"For the Gifts and the Calling of God are irrevocable. . ." (Romans 11:29)
The Early PATRIARCHS of the CHRISTIAN CHURCH
The "Seventy" Disciples were the earliest followers of Jesus mentioned in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 10:1–24). The numbers of the elect discipleship were growing exponentially. Some of the more prominent patriarchs and ecclesiastic elders of the early Christian church would come from the ranks of these early missionaries and evangelists. These men would add their names to the Apostleship and become the first Apostolic Council in Jerusalem, led by their newly adopted bishop. The growing discipleship and the elect others who followed after them, would become instrumental not only in spreading the gospel, but also in establishing the foundations and framework for the Church of the New Covenant in Jesus Christ throughout the known world.
Qualifications of Church Overseers
Dictionary: a title borne by persons sent on foreign missions to carry the Christian message into the world; the first Christian missionary in any region or country; the title of the highest ecclesiastical offices (members of the clergy who address the assembly) and upper executive administration of the church officials.
"an APOSTLE (not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised Him from the dead)." (Galatians 1:1)
"Truly the signs of an APOSTLE were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds..." (2 Corinthians 12:12)
"This is a faithful saying: If a man desires the position of a BISHOP, he desires a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach; not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous; one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, HOW WILL HE TAKE CARE OF THE CHURCH OF GOD ?); not a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil. Moreover he must have a good testimony among those who are outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil." (1 Timothy 3:1-7)
"For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint ELDERS in every city as I commanded you - if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination." (Titus 1:5-6)
"Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine. Do not receive an accusation against an elder except from two or three witnesses... I charge you before God and the Lord Jesus Christ and the elect angels that you observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing with partiality. Do not lay hands on anyone hastily, nor share in other people’s sins; keep yourself pure. No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for your stomach’s sake and your frequent infirmities."
(1 Timothy 5:17,19,21-23)
The Elders’ Task
"For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain... not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth... To those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work." (Titus 1:10-11,14,15,16)
"Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith..." (Titus 1:13)
"Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear... Some men’s sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgment, but those of some men follow later. Likewise, the good works of some are clearly evident, and those that are otherwise cannot be hidden." (1 Timothy 5:20,24-25)
These early leaders of Christianity were charged with maintaining a high standard of morality and proper living. They were not only given the responsibility of organizing their churches and congregations, but also to properly lead them by example and monitor the fruits of their actions.
Many of these early Patriarchs were also included with the "Seventy" Disciples ordained by Jesus, originating from Judea and the nearby lands. There are mixed opinions however on many of them in regards to this classification, because the early church fathers were liberal in assigning names to this group. For lack of scriptural reference or other documentation, their indentities as far as timing in the history of the Discipleship becomes dependent more on their geographic origin, as many of the names would not have come from Judea but are Gentile converts instead. They are none-the-less all notable figures in the early Discipleship of the Church, as many went on to become the "founding fathers" of Christianity and the first Bishops or Elders of the ecclesiastical community.
Alphabetical Listing of Early PATRIARCHS and Ecclesiastic ELDERS (A - H)
Achaicus - was a Corinthian Christian, one of the Seventy Disciples, who according to the Bible, together with Fortunatus and Stephanas, carried letters between the Corinthians and Paul the Apostle. (1 Corinthians 16:17,15)
Agabus the Prophet - was an early Jewish Christian and one of the Seventy Disciples. He was one of a group of prophets who came to Antioch from Jerusalem to foretell of the bad things to come (Acts 11:27-28): "And in these days prophets came from Jerusalem to Antioch. Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and showed by the Spirit that there was going to be a great famine throughout all the world, which also happened in the days of Claudius Caesar." (45 A.D.) As a result, the people of Judea were able to plan for this coming plight and set up a system of support to help the people in need during that time (Acts 11:29). "Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea." Many years later, in 58 A.D., Agabus is also the same prophet that goes to the house of Philip the evangelist in Caesarea Maritima, to meet with the Apostle Paul who had just arrived there (Acts 21:10). Agabus warns Paul of his upcoming capture in Jerusalem and demonstrates to the Apostle the method in which he will be bound. Paul would not be persuaded however and his fate ultimately awaited him. According to tradition, Agabus dies as a martyr many years later in Antioch.
Amplias - (Greek: "Ampliatus") was a Roman Christian mentioned by Paul in one of his letters, where he says, "Greet Ampliatus, whom I love in the Lord." (Romans 16:8 NIV)
Ananias of Damascus - Ananias was one of the Seventy Disciples of Jesus. He was a priest sent by God to heal Saul's blindness and introduce him to the Church. During the conversion process of (Saul) Paul, he is told to go into Damascus to have his blindness restored (Acts 9:6). Meanwhile, Ananias has a vision where the Lord instructs him to go and heal "Saul of Tarsus" (Acts 9:11), which knowing Saul's reputation, is hesitant at first to comply (Acts 9:15-16); But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake." So he goes and performs the task whereas Saul (Paul) is baptised in the Holy Spirit and fully converted (Acts 9:17-19). Ananias is also described as "a devout observer of the law and highly respected by all the Jews" living in Damascus (Acts 22:12). This indicates that Ananias was originally from Damascus and was not one of the refugees from the persecution in Jerusalem. Likewise, this is not the same priest "Ananais", who later in Jerusalem is mentioned as presiding over the trial of the Apostle Paul (Acts 22;23;24). According to tradition, Ananias was martyred in Eleutheropolis (Roman city in Judea, approx. 53km southwest of Jerusalem).
Apelles of Heraklion - (Romans 16:10) Along with the Apostles Urban of Macedonia, Stachys, Ampliatus, Narcissus of Athens and Aristobulus of Britannia, they all had assisted the Apostle Andrew in his missionary travels. Apelles was later ordained the first Bishop of Heraclea in Trachis (south of the River Spercheios in Greece).
Archippus - (Greek for "master of the horse") was an early Christian believer mentioned briefly in the Epistles to Philemon and the Colossians. In Paul's letter to Philemon (Philemon 1:2), Archippus is named once alongside Philemon and Apphia as a host of the church, and a "fellow soldier." Next, the church in Colossae (Colossians 4:17) is instructed to tell Archippus to "Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfil it." According to the 4th century Apostolic Constitutions (7.46), Archippus was the first bishop of Laodicea in Phrygia (now part of Turkey).
Aristarchus - (or "Aristarch") was a Greek "Macedonian of Thessalonica" and an early Christian mentioned in a few passages of the New Testament. He accompanied the Apostle Paul on his third missionary journey. Along with Gaius, another Macedonian, Aristarchus was seized by the mob at Ephesus and taken into the theater (Acts 19:29). Later, Aristarchus returned with Paul from Greece to Asia (Acts 20:4). At Caesarea, he embarked with Paul on a ship from Adramyttium (Edremit district-Balikesir Province of Turkey) bound for Myra in Lycia (Acts 27:2); whether he traveled with Paul from there to Rome is not recorded, but Aristarchus is described as Paul's "fellow prisoner" and "fellow laborer" (Colossians 4:10; Philemon 1:24). In Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic tradition, Aristarchus is identified as one of the Seventy Apostles and Bishop of Apamea.
Aristobulus - (Romans 16:10) He s known as the first Bishop of Britain or the Apostle to Britain. Aristobulus was originally a Jewish Christian from the Cypriot Church (Cyprus), numbered among the Seventy Disciples. Along with the disciples: Urban of Macedonia, Stachys, Ampliatus, Apelles of Heraklion and Narcissus of Athens, they assisted the Apostle Andrew on his missionary journey. Aristobulus was also the brother of the Apostle Barnabas. He preached the Gospel in Britain as its first bishop. Previous to this, he preached the Gospel to the Celts of Northern Spain (the "Celtiberians"), while on his way to Britain. Aristobulus' acclaim was so high amongst the Brythonic Celts that a region was named after him, (Arwystli), which later became a small medieval British kingdom, and continues to this day as a district, or more precisely, a cantref within the county of Powys, Wales.
Artemas - He is counted as one of the Seventy Disciples. Artemas is mentioned in Paul's Epistle to Titus (Titus 3:12). He was known to be from Lystra and later becomes the first bishop of the church there.
Asyncritus - (Greek: Asynkritos) was numbered among the Seventy Disciples. He was Bishop of Hyrcania in Asia Minor. Paul mentions him in his Epistle to the Romans. (Romans 16:14)
Carpus - While Paul was incarcerated in Rome, his second letter to Timothy requests: "The cloak that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments." (2 Timothy 4:13) The cloak that Paul refers to is a "Phelonion", which in later church tradition becomes the special liturgical vestment worn by priests of the Eastern Christian churches, the equivalent to the "Chasuble" of Western Christianity. These garments are a sort of "poncho", a round vestment with a hole in the middle for the head, which fell to the feet on all sides and was worn over the priest's other vestments. Carpus is known in tradition as later becoming the Bishop of Berroia (or Verria) in Macedonia.
Cephas of Iconium - is numbered among the Seventy Disciples, and was Bishop of Iconium (central Anatolia region of Turkey) or Colophon, Pamphylia. Church historians record that he is the "Cephas" mentioned by Paul (not being Simon-Peter) as the statement refers: "and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve." (1 Cor. 15:5), since "Cephas" (Peter the "rock") could not be in two places at once.
Clement - is numbered among the Seventy Disciples and is mentioned when Paul writes to Philippi (Philippians 4:3). He is later a bishop in the See of Serdica (Sardice) and is credited for writing "The First Epistle of Clement" (literally as a letter from Clement to Corinth) addressed to the Church of Corinth. The letter dates from the late 1st or early 2nd century, and is ranked with the Didache and The Gospel of Thomas as one of the earliest (if not the earliest) works of extant Christian litterature outside the canonical New Testament. As the name indicates, also a Second Epistle of Clement is known, but this is a later work, not by the same author. According to several early sources in church tradition, the Apostle Peter later ordained Clement as Bishop in Rome to be an administrator for the dioceese (along with bishops Linus and Cletus), while Peter retired to prayer and preaching. After Peter's matyrdom under Nero, Latin tradition holds that Pope Clement I was the first official head in the line of the Papal legacy. According to apocryphal texts dating to the 4th century, Clement was finally banished from Rome to the Chersonesus during the reign of the Emperor Trajan (around 99 A.D.) and was sent to work in a stone quarry. The story relates that on his arrival, the prisoners were suffering from lack of water, so Clement then knelt down in prayer. In a vision, he is said to have seen a lamb on the nearby hill and when he went to that spot, struck the ground with his pickaxe releasing a gushing stream of water to drink. This miracle resulted in the conversion of a large number of the local pagans and many of his fellow prisoners to Christianity. As punishment, Clement was martyred by being tied to an anchor and thrown from a Roman boat into the Black Sea.
Cleopas - This man was a figure of early Christianity and believed to be one of the Seventy Disciples. He is listed as one of the two disciples (the second believed to be Luke the Evangelist) that first saw the resurrected Christ and encountered Him during the "Road to Emmaus" appearance in the Gospels of Mark and Luke. This occurs three days after the crucifixion, on the day of Jesus' resurrection. The two have heard the tomb of Jesus was found empty earlier that day. They are discussing the events of the past few days, when a stranger walks up to them on the road and asks what they are discussing. "He appeared in another form to two of them as they walked and went into the country." (Mark 16:12; Luke 16:13-14) The two disciples originally did not recognize the resurrected Jesus because; "So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him." (Luke 24:15-16) They invite the stranger to walk with them, where they talk about the recent events concerning the disappearance of Jesus' body from the tomb. At one point, Cleopas actually invites Christ to join them for the evening at the village ahead (Luke 24:18-29).
Once there, they all go in to have dinner and talk some more, where the disciples finally recognize who Jesus is while breaking bread (like the "Last Supper"), when He simply vanishes before them (Luke 24:28-31). Cleopas and the other disciple (Luke) then rush back into Jerusalem to find the eleven Apostles and tell them of this event (Luke 24:32-34), but they are immediately disbelieved by the eleven Apostles (Mark 16:12). Chirst suddenly reappears in the midst of them all and displays to them that He is "flesh and bone", and shows to them the wounds in His hands and His feet (Luke 24:36-40). Otherwise, Cleopas' name is an abbreviated form of Cleopatros, a common Hellenistic name meaning "son of a renowned father". He is not listed anywhere else in scripture and no other mention of him is noted by church fathers.
Crescens - He was said to be a missionary in Galatia and became a companion of the Apostle Paul. Crescens is mentioned as one of the Seventy Apostles of Christ by Pseudo-Dorotheus. The name "Crescens" is derived from the Latin word "crescere", which means to "increase", and such he is reported as doing for the early church, according to founding fathers. Crescens was with Paul during his second Roman captivity, but appears only once in the New Testament, when he is mentioned as having left the Apostle to go back into Galatia: (2 Timothy 4:8-10) Accordingly, the earliest tradition (Apostolic Constitutions, VII, 46) represents Crescens as a bishop of the Churches in Galatia. He is reported as being martyred in Galatia, under Trajan (Roman Emperor from 98 to 117 A.D.).
Crispus - Was one of the leaders of the Jewish Synagogue at Corinth when the Apostle Paul first arrived there (Acts 18:8). Paul stays at a house (Justus) next to the synagogue, where he then meets Crispus and converts his entire household to Christianity and they are baptized. Later, when the Church at Corinth begins to splinter, Paul states: "I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, lest anyone should say that I had baptized in my own name." (1 Corinthians 1:14), not wanting them to give himself the credit instead of the Lord God. Crispus is later noted as bcecoming the Bishop of Chalcedon in Bithynia (Northern Anantolia) and was martyred for his faith.
Demas - One of the first of the disciples mentioned as having fallen away from the faith and leaving the church. He is mentioned as having been a man involved in the ministry and was a companion of the Apostle Paul, also being with him during his first imprisonment in Rome. Later when Paul wrote Second Timothy, he said that Demas had forsaken him, "having loved this present world." (2 Timothy 4:10)
Epaenetus - (Epenetus) Was a Christian in Rome to whom Paul sent his salutation. Epaenetus is listed as one "who is the firstfruits of Achaia" (Romans 16:5), a beloved friend of Paul and group of Christians from Greece. He later served as the Bishop of Carthage, an ancient city in North Africa.
Epaphras - was a Christian preacher who spread the Gospel to his fellow citizens of Colossae (Colossians 1:7). When Paul was a prisoner in Rome, Epaphras came to him with a favorable account of the Church at Colossae. He remained for a while with Paul in Rome and was, in a sense, his "fellow prisoner" (Philemon 1:23). Paul bears witness to the struggling in his prayers for Colossae and the zealous work of Epaphras in service there as well as in Laodicea and Hierapolis (Colossians 4:12-13).
Epaphroditus - was a fellow Christian missionary of the Apostle Paul. His name has a pagan origin, which translated means "loved by Aphrodite", or transliterated as "charming." Epaphroditus was a Gentile convert that became a church delegate for the Christian community at Philippi in Macedonia. In scripture, Epaphroditus was sent with that community's gift to Paul during his first imprisonment in Rome (Philippians 2:25). Epaphroditus is also described as an authoritative delegate, more than a mere messenger. He was an Elder minister but not an Apostle by office. Epaphroditus was also sent as a minister to Paul's needs, helping in a capacity which the Philippian community itself was unable to do (Philippians 2:30). On his arrival in Rome, Epaphroditus devoted himself to "the work of Christ," both as Paul's attendant and as an assistant in his missionary work, almost to the point of jeopardizing his own health. Epaphroditus is also believed to have been a person of means, therefore being able to supplement the Philippian community's gift to Paul (Philippians 4:18). In church tradition, Epaphroditus is listed as becoming the Bishop of Andriace (ancient town of Myra in Lycia) by church fathers.
Erastus - was Corinth's "oikonomos", a position of high status (Romans 16:23). The word is generally translated as "steward" or, in this context, "treasurer"; KJV uses the translation "chamberlain", NIV uses "director of public works". In 1929, an inscription mentioning an "Erastus" was found near a paved area northeast of the theater of Corinth. It has been dated to the mid-first century and reads as "Erastus in return for his aedileship laid [the pavement] at his own expense." Aedileship was an office of the Roman Republic dealing with the maintenance of public buildings and regulation of public festivals. Erastus is also mentioned in the Second Epistle to Timothy and Acts (Acts 19:22; 2 Timothy 4:20).
Evodius - is a disciple of the early church at Antioch and is one of the earliest identifiable Christians listed by church fathers. There are no accounts of Evodius in scripture and very little is known of his life, however, he is noted as being a pagan who converted to Christianity due to the evangelistic work of the Apostle Peter, who was originally the Bishop of Antioch and led the church there. In the Book of Acts, one of the first communities to receive evangelism were the Jews and pagans of Antioch. This city was quite cosmopolitan for its time and there were both Hellenized Jews and pagans influenced by the monotheistic beliefs of the new church. The term "Christian" was actually first coined to describe the Gentile converts (mainly Syrian and Greek) of Antioch. Evodius was one of the first pagans to come to the new church and it is noted by tradition that he later succeeded Peter as its next bishop, when Peter left Antioch for Rome. Evodius was Bishop of Antioch until 69 A.D., and was succeeded by St. Ignatius of Antioch. It is more likely that Evodius died of natural causes, in office, as there is no further information that he was martyred.
Fortunatus - Fortunatus is mentioned by the Apostle Paul in Corinthians: "I was glad when Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus arrived, because they have supplied what was lacking from you." (1 Corinthians 16:17), as supplying relief to Paul whereas others had become incapable. Fortunatus is later known by tradition as working under Hermagoras, (the first Bishop of Aquileia) having been anointed as a Deacon by Peter, where they evangelized most of the area in northern Italy. Being later arrested by Sebastius, they are tortured and beheaded by command of Nero.
Gaius - is numbered among the Seventy Disciples and met up with Paul the Apostle in Derbe which was situated near ancient Lystra. He joined Paul to mininster in Ephesus where they worked with the original twelve disciples there and then traveled extensively performing missionary work throughout Asia Minor. He would later be helpful in establishing the Church of Corinth (1 Corinthians 1:14) with Paul and Crispus. When Corinth first destabilized, Gaius traveled to Macedonia and met up with Aristarchus where they proceeded into Anatolia (Acts 20:4). They found themselves back in Ephesus as the riots broke out resulting from the increase of Christianity in the region, having been prompted by the idol makers who were losing money in their trade (Acts 19:29). They helped to restore order to the Ephesians and Gaius was later commended for his generosity as an elder in the Church (3 John 1:1-8). In writing to the Romans, Paul recalls Gaius as being "the host of the whole church" (Romans 16:23), where tradition later notes that he replaces Timothy as the Bishop of Ephesus.
Hermas - is numbered among the Seventy Disciples and is greeted by Paul as a Christian in Rome at the time (Romans 16:14). He was later ordained as first Bishop in Dalmatia. Hermas is most noted in church tradition as one possible originator of "The Shepherd of Hermas" (or just "The Shepherd"), a Christian literary work of either the 1st century, considered a valuable book by many Christians. The Shepherd of Hermas is also considered canonical scripture by some of the early Church fathers, where along with the Apocrypha, it was bound with the New Testament in the Codex Sinaiticus, and it was listed between the Acts of the Apostles and the apocryphal Acts of Paul in the listing of the Codex Claromontanus. The Shepherd as a litterary piece, held its greatest authority during the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The book consists of five visions granted to Hermas, who was a former slave, followed by twelve mandates (or "commandments"), and ten similitudes ("parables"). The account of these visions rely on allegory and pays special attention to the church, and calling for the faithful to repent of the sins that have harmed it. The Shepherd is cause for one of the meanings as probably attached to "the Good Shepherd" as a symbol for Christ. The book was originally written in Rome, in the Greek language, but a Latin translation was made very shortly afterwards. The evidence for the place and date of this work are in its language and theology. The reference to Clement of Rome suggests its authorship as between 88-97 A.D. for at least the historical setting of the first two visions. Also, since Paul sent greetings to Hermas (Romans 16:14), some have followed Origen of Alexandria's opinion that he was likewise the author of this religious allegory.
Hermes - was listed as one of the Seventy Disciples and was later the first Bishop in Philippopolis in Thrace (Plovdiv, Bulgaria). (Romans 16:14)
Hermogenes - (also Hermagoras, Hermenagoras, Hermogenes) Hermogenes, along with Phygellus, are mentioned as having turned away from the Apostle Paul during his time in Rome (2 Timothy 1:15). They are noted as not having left the church however, but as distancing themselves from Paul because of the inherrant danger involved under the Romans, in associating with him. For example in Christian tradition, Hermogenes is later mentioned as being chosen by the Apostle Mark to serve as the leader of the nascent Christian community in Aquileia (northeastern Italy on the Adriatic). Hermogenes is also noted as being consecrated as the first Bishop of Aquileia by the Apostle Peter where along with Fortunatus, they evangelize northern Italy until eventually being arrested by Sebastius, a representative of Nero. The two Christian patriarchs were then martyred, being tortured and beheaded by the Romans.
Herodion - (also Herodian or Rodion) - was also numbered among the Seventy Disciples. Herodion was a relative of the Apostle Paul (Romans 16:11) and when Christianity spread into Greece, he was his companion on many journeys where he suffered great afflictions. Herodion was with Paul when the mobs attacked, being beaten, stoned, and stabbed by the idol-worshippers and Jews that were enraged by the preaching of the gospel. He was left for dead by his attackers, but Herodion survived and continued to serve the Apostles. Herodion was made Bishop of Neopatras (Patras), Greece and was later serving the Apostle Peter where he was finally beheaded with Olympas in Rome, on the same day that Peter was crucified.
Alphabetical Listing of Early PATRIARCHS (I - Z) Continued in Next Section
APOSTLES (PART 8) - Elders of the Disciples & Early Patriarchs of the Church - (I - Z) - Alphabetical Listing (I-Z) - (Part Two) The ranks of the disciples and the more prominent patriarchs of the early church who created the first Ecclesiastic Councils and established the hierarchy for the future Christian Church.
Read More about the APOSTLES of JESUS CHRIST in this Article Series:
- (QUIZ) Can You Name the First (13) Apostles of Jesus Christ? - The APOSTLES (PART 1)
Just a quick test of your memory - Can you name the original 12 Apostles and the one who followed after (the 13th Apostle)?
- APOSTLES (PART 2) - The First Anointed Ones
The first "anointed ones". Those persons that were called by God and the Holy Spirit to recognize Jesus Christ as the "Messiah" and pronounce His arrival, including the "fishers of men" and "the Rock".
- APOSTLES (PART 3) - The Original Disciples of Christ
The original disciples that became the first 12 Apostles of Jesus Christ, who helped to establish the hierarchy of the early Christian Church. This also includes the demise of the "fallen Apostle" and his replacement (the 13th Apostle).
- APOSTLES (PART 4) - The "Seventy" Disciples - Seven Deacons & The Evangelists
The "Seventy Disciples" were chosen and sent out by Jesus after His Tranfiguration, to saturate Judea with the gospel, before His arrival in Jerusalem prior to "Palm Sunday". These people would later become the founding members of the early church.
- APOSTLES (PART 5) - The "Seventy" Disciples - The Apostleship and Ecclesiastes
The original Disciples became the Apostleship of the first ecclesiastic council. As their ranks grew organizationally the numbers of the discipleship likewise increased. The ministry expanded to include the evangelism of Gentiles in foreign lands.
- APOSTLES (PART 6) - The Apostolic Conference and the Jerusalem Council
The Council of Jerusalem (or Apostolic Conference) is an early Christian council that was held in Jerusalem around the year 50 A.D. One of the most significant steps in the unification of the early Christian church and solved early doctrinal issues.
- APOSTLES (PART 7) - Elders of the Disciples & Early Patriarchs of the Church (A - H)
- APOSTLES (PART 8) - Elders of the Disciples & Early Patriarchs of the Church - (I - Z)
Alphabetical Listing (I-Z) - (Part Two) These disciples and the elect others that followed, became the patriarchs and elders of the early church. They would establish the foundation of the ecclesiastic hierarchy for the future of Christian Church.
- APOSTLES (PART 9) - Women Disciples and Lady Patriarchs of the Christian Church
Not many people realize the extent to which women were involved in the early Christian church or how they fit into the ranks of the Apostles and Ecclesiastic Discipleship today.
- (COMING) APOSTLES (PART 10) - The "Beloved Disciple" - Who was the un-named Disciple that “Jesus loved” best in the Gospel? Was it Lazarus, or John the brother of James, or someone else altogether? This topic has been questioned by scholars over the ages and the general consensus agreed to by most theologians is...
- (COMING) APOSTLES (PART 11) - The "Apostle to the Gentiles" and Early Christian Church - The Apostle Paul becomes instrumental in spreading Christianity to the Gentiles, but the Romans fights back. Eventually, the new "Holy Roman Empire" would rise and dominate the scene of Christianity, setting the standard for the future of the church.
- (COMING) APOSTLES (PART 12) - The HOLY ROMAN Empire and Orthodox Religion - The Apostle Paul becomes instrumental in spreading Christianity to the Gentiles, but the Romans fights back. Eventually, the new "Holy Roman Empire" would rise and dominate the scene of Christianity, setting the standard for the future of the church.
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COMMENTS - Tell Us What YOU Think (^VOTE Above^)
Rev. Teddy C. Ryan III (author) from a life in sin saved by the Lord's grace - we are blessed with the ministry in Florida & Georgia on February 14, 2011:
Amen to that Brother Dave! Regardless of what "organized religion" has come to believe and observe about these early Christian disciples, this article series has tried to reflect more on their history in relation to the work that they did and trials they had to face, in helping to spread the gospel about Christ.
We will refelct more on the term "saints", in how it is actually used in scripture opposed to what has become "sainthood" today, in the final part of this series: "The HOLY ROMAN Empire and Orthodox Religion".
Thanks again for stopping by and sharing... Rev.Ted
Dave Mathews from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA on February 14, 2011:
Voted useful: I do not know if I am right or wrong, but I have never placed any faith or power in the saints. My faith belongs to God and Jesus only.