The history of the Church from the book of Acts and after

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50
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Why does Judaism celebrate Sabbath on Saturday and most Christians celebrate Sabbath on Sunday?

When did most Christians (possibly excluding exceptions such as Seventh Day Adventists) and Jews start celebrating Sabbath on different days of the week and why?
16
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2answers
908 views

How old is old earth creationism?

The answers to What is the biblical evidence for an old Earth? say that biblical arguments for old Earth creationism are based on the ambiguous words used for describing lengths of time in Genesis. ...
10
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4answers
811 views

Why is the KJV frequently said to be the “true” translation?

This question actually centers on the KJV translation itself. It's not hard to find a church in America (particularly in the south) where they believe that the KJV is the one true translation and that ...
11
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1answer
300 views

When did “he descended into hell” become part of the Apostles' Creed?

There seems to be much more debate over one clause of the Apostles' Creed than the entire rest of it put together, and that is the "descent into hell" (or "hades") clause, also known as the "harrowing ...
19
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1answer
298 views

When in the development of trinitarian doctrine was the word “persons” first applied to God?

In the Bible, the word "persons" is not used in reference to God, nor are the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit called "persons." When, in early Christian writings and creeds, was the word "persons" (...
14
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4answers
814 views

When is the first documented case of Christians praying to the dead saints?

When is the first documented case of Christians praying to the dead saints? (A point in comments was brought up that "asking the dead saints" does not mean "praying to the dead saints" as "prayer is ...
25
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6answers
3k views

What is the history of the concept of a “personal relationship with Jesus”?

It is common these days to hear questions like: Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus? Or... The most important thing is your personal relationship with Jesus. The Bible never ...
19
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4answers
6k views

Was tithing 10% required or encouraged by the early church?

I cannot find in the New Testament an obligation on Christians to tithe 10% of their income. Instead I read that it is up the individual to decide: 2 Corinthians 9:7 (NIV1984) Each man should ...
20
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3answers
3k views

How did the cross come to be a symbol for Christianity?

I understand WHY the cross became a symbol for Christianity, but HOW did it become a symbol? How did it start and how did it evolve into the symbol (or symbols since there are many variants) we all ...
19
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2answers
4k views

From where does the doctrine that there is no time in heaven originate?

I'm quite familiar with the fact that God himself is outside of time, this is very easy to show through scripture. However it seems to be an increasingly popular conception that there is no time in ...
19
votes
1answer
594 views

What of Augustine's ecclesiology was rejected in the Reformation?

BB Warfield is famous for saying that the Reformation was a triumph of Augustine's soteriology over his ecclesiology. For those who believe that Augustine's ecclesiology was rejected in the ...
18
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4answers
9k views

Why does communion frequency vary in different denominations?

Different churches celebrate the Eucharist (Communion, Lord's Supper, ...) with different frequency. At one extreme, Catholic and high Anglican churches tend to celebrate it at least daily. Many ...
16
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2answers
998 views

What is the Biblical and historical basis for Christian pacifism?

My understanding is that early Christians were generally pacifists. Today (at least in the U.S.) Christian pacifists are a bit hard to come by. Many quote Romans 13:1-3 to support Christian ...
12
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3answers
13k views

What is the origin of the Good Friday tradition?

As suggested by this question and this answer, it seems possible that Jesus actually died on a Wednesday, not on a Friday. In light of these competing theories, what is the origin of the Good Friday ...
8
votes
4answers
558 views

What is the history of the doctrine of inerrancy?

Is there any reason, biblical or otherwise, not to believe that the doctrine of inerrancy is relatively new (past two hundred years). I found the following statement on Wikipedia. "It has in fact ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

What is “ Origenism”

I ran across this quote in the Catholic Encyclopedia: Pope St. Anastasius I A pontiff who is remembered chiefly for his condemnation of Origenism. A Roman by birth, he became pope in 399, ...
6
votes
1answer
117 views

Is it known when and why Christians began to sign themselves and impart blessings with the Cross?

Among the Christians who make the sign of the cross [cf. this @fredsbend's answer], is it known when and why Christians began to sign themselves with the Cross? The best answer will also include when ...
5
votes
2answers
266 views

Hierarchy of Catholicism, government, and papal teaching

The bible teaches that we should submit to our governments in: Romans 13:1-2 (KJV) Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ...
20
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3answers
862 views

Did the Apostles' Creed originate with the Apostles?

The Apostles' Creed is perhaps the oldest statement of faith in the Christian tradition. Is there any evidence that it was used by Jesus' first followers? If not, when did it originate?
17
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1answer
2k views

Are there any writings from the church fathers teaching Original Sin before Augustine?

It has been said by some that Augustine was the first to teach Original Sin, "It was Augustine (354-430 A.D.) who first promoted the idea that; "the fallen nature of Adam was transmitted ...
14
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3answers
4k views

Is Partialism a real heresy?

This YouTube video identifies Partialism as a heresy. It states that Partialism is the heresy wherein The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are each described as 1/3 of God. To me, it's a vaguely familiar ...
9
votes
2answers
316 views

What's the basic premise behind “restorationist” movements?

To the untrained ear, the labels used in Christian circles for some groups of churches as either "reformational" or "restorationist" don't seem that different. If the label "reformed" is a direct ...
8
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1answer
1k views

To whom does Pope Francis confess?

So, Popes sin too. (At least, I assume they do.) Presumably, they confess their sin and do penance. Who hears his confession? Is it an office that rotates, or one individual? And, does the Pope ...
6
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3answers
235 views

Why is “faith” omitted as a doctrinal consideration in TULIP (five point) Calvinism?

Throughout the Bible “faith” coupled with God’s “grace” is essential for salvation. The I in TULIP stands for irresistible “grace”, what role does “faith” hold in Calvinism and why is it isolated ...
16
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5answers
543 views

Did Augustine teach sola fide?

It is popularly taught that the reformers declared five distinctive elements of theology that differentiated them from Rome: salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, for the ...
10
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1answer
392 views

What were the major disagreements between Erasmus and Luther during the Protestant Reformation?

Although Erasmus inspired many of Luther's ideas, they disagreed on many subjects, such as whether the Catholic Church should have a moral reform or a reform of beliefs. Did Erasmus disagree with ...
16
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7answers
35k views

What is the evidence that suggests that the Apostle Paul was married?

I have heard people say over the years that it is likely that the Apostle Paul had been married at some point, perhaps prior to his conversion. However, there doesn't seem to be any biblical evidence ...
8
votes
2answers
338 views

What is the origin of the idea that the baby Jesus did not cry?

"...the cattle are lowing. The baby awakes. But little Lord Jesus, no crying he makes." ~ 2nd verse to Away In A Manger Did this idea originate from historical Christian doctrine? Where did ...
5
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2answers
6k views

The unicorn as a Christological figure

This isn't so much a question about theology or denominational teachings as Church history. In an answer to a question on another StackExchange site, someone posted this: I am an Art Historian, ...
12
votes
1answer
788 views

How has the position of the Catholic Church on drugs changed over time?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: 2211 The political community has a duty to honor the family, to assist it, and to ensure especially [...] the protection of security and health, ...
11
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1answer
266 views

How could a seventh century heretic have possessed papal infallibility?

More specifically: How does the Roman Catholic Church reconcile the doctrine of Papal Infallibility with the Sixth Ecumenical Council's pronouncement regarding Pope Honorius? The Sixth Ecumenical ...
9
votes
3answers
154 views

What did the early church fathers (pre-5th c.) teach with regards to the doctrine of baptism as a necessity for salvation?

The title says it all, really. What did the ECF believe and teach with regards to baptism being or not being necessary for salvation? Related: What did the early church fathers (pre-5th c.) teach ...
9
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3answers
9k views

Where did the religious symbol of the 'halo' come from?

I once read somewhere that the 'halo' was inherited by Christianity from ancient worshippers of the Sun.  However, although this seems believable I never bothered to verify its historic credibility - ...
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0answers
78 views

What is the difference between classical and revised dispensationalism?

I understand from Wikipedia and elsewhere that dispensationalism can be broken into three main categories: Classical (Scofield, Chafer) Traditional, revised, or normative (Ryrie, Walvoord) ...
8
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4answers
1k views

Does any church follow the Apostolic Tradition of Baptism ‘in the nude’, or was that never the tradition?

The Apostolic Tradition was the work of Hippolytus, written somewhere between 215 and 400 AD. Recent scholars seem to take the later date (source). The whole writing can be found here: Apostolic ...
7
votes
2answers
396 views

How has the LDS Word of Wisdom changed since its introduction?

In the LDS faith, they follow a law of health called the Word of Wisdom that teaches them to abstain from things like alcohol and tobacco and it encourages them to eat foods like grains, fruits, and ...
7
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2answers
255 views

Did Jacob Arminius and/or the remonstrants believe they were in agreement with John Calvin?

In a comment on another question on this site, a user says that the Remonstrants thought they more faithfully represented Calvin and Augustine's teaching than did those who eventually convened the ...
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3answers
4k views

How did the Inquisition impact modern Christianity?

Related Question How did the Crusades impact modern Christianity? How did the Inquisition impact modern day Christianity own sense of morality and spirituality? What do these things mean to a ...
4
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3answers
327 views

From where does the teaching on women in ministry come? [duplicate]

First off, since I know this may be a somewhat controversial question in today's climate, let me just state that I'm not intending to take any part in that controversy. I'm just asking this question ...
3
votes
1answer
86 views

What were the scriptural arguments used for modern western racism?

A blight on the modern western church is that the bible has been used by certain people to justify racism--specifically dark-skinned people's inferiority and light-skinned people's superiority. Some ...
2
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2answers
124 views

Why aren't the Oriental and Eastern Orthodox Churches in communion with each other?

Both the Oriental and Eastern Orthodox Church worship the same God and the Blessed Mother Virgin Mary and the Saints and the Holy Trinity. Do language and cultural differences separate them? What ...
2
votes
1answer
192 views

Was Emperor St. Justinian an Aphthartodocetist?

Ss. Eutychius of Constantinople and Anastasius of Antioch were deposed and exiled because they openly opposed Emperor St. Justinian's edict in 564 on Aphthartodocetism. On the Hagiography of Eutychius ...
18
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2answers
16k views

How did the Crusades affect the Pope's power and authority?

How did the Crusades affect the Pope's power/authority, during and after the Crusades? The Crusades, from Wikipedia The Crusades were a series of religiously sanctioned military campaigns, called ...
16
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4answers
4k views

Is it true that early Christians were baptised naked?

I was told that people were baptised naked in the early Christian church. Is this true? If so, could you provide references please?
12
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2answers
888 views

What evidence is there that Peter was a bishop in Rome?

The Encyclopaedia Brittanica says The claims that the church of Rome was founded by Peter or that he served as its first bishop are in dispute and rest on evidence that is not earlier than the ...
11
votes
2answers
518 views

What is the case in favour of adelphopoiesis as a relationship akin to marriage?

I've seen a few things lampooning John Boswell's interpretation of adelphopoiesis as a quasi civil union between men. However, I've not seen much on his side other than it being used by Christian gay ...
11
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1answer
305 views

What has the LDS Church (Mormons) historically taught about the Curse of Cain and dark skin?

I have heard that people with black skin had been denied certain things in the Mormon Church until the past 30 years or so and that this has something to do with the Curse of Cain. What has been the ...
11
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2answers
3k views

Were the medieval popes examined on a toilet-lid-like chair to establish their masculinity?

Is one of the consequences of the Pope Joan story, whether it was true or false, the use of a marble chair with a large, toilet-like hole in its seat? As the picture above shows, it seems that that ...
10
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3answers
4k views

Apostle John lived in Ephesus - what sources claim that?

Which earliest sources does Christianity posses that claim that apostle John spent the last years of his life in Ephesus?
9
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1answer
197 views

How have commentators historically viewed the death of the fetus in Exodus 21?

The proper translation of Exodus 21:22 and the proper interpretation of Exodus have been battlegrounds in the contemporary abortion debate: When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so ...