1 Timothy 4:1-3:

Amplified Bible (AMP)

4 But the [Holy] Spirit distinctly and expressly declares that in latter times some will turn away from the faith, giving attention to deluding and seducing spirits and doctrines that demons teach,

2 Through the hypocrisy and pretensions of liars whose consciences are seared (cauterized),

3 Who forbid people to marry and [teach them] to abstain from [certain kinds of] foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and have [an increasingly clear] knowledge of the truth.

The question is simple. Are we still living in the great apostasy? This matches quite a few doctrines quite closely.

"Framing" is requested - more explanation of the question given:

The scriptures explained that a great apostasy would occur after the death of the apostles. The apostles acted as a restraint to this (2 Thes 2:6,7).

The apostles of been dead for thousands of years, and christianity has fragmented from one denomination "falling" away from another.

The question thus remains: Are we still living in the apostasy? That is, is there any reason to think it is in any way over?

If christianity.stackexchange can't answer this, then this whole site is just idle chatter of opinion.

This question was strong-armed into being closed because it was too "open ended" and it was requested that this be answered to the bias of a specific denomination, though a factionally based answer goes against the point of the question. Please reference this scripture: 1 Corinthians 1:10

  • What do you mean "still"? Its just beginning. Commented May 1, 2014 at 6:57
  • As though it could get worse? One might have have expected a return to truth before the worst hits. In what way is it "just the beginning" after thousands of years? This outdates even the timespans of some of the major bible covenant periods.
    – user9485
    Commented May 1, 2014 at 7:27
  • 4
    This question, as written, is difficult to answer. As we've already seen, one tradition will say "it's just beginning" and another will say "it's over now." If you want an authoritative answer, and not a bunch of answers that contradict each other, you need to ask what doctrinal perspective you're looking for.
    – Mason Wheeler
    Commented May 1, 2014 at 13:42
  • There was one Christ and one prophesied set of events, and there is one bible. Perhaps the fact that so many perspectives exist would be answer enough.
    – user9485
    Commented May 1, 2014 at 21:42
  • 1
    Re this: "Its a paradox really. The answer will change based on which doctrinal bias is given weight." Exactly. We don't do open ended questions like that here. We're not here to help you weigh truth and solve eschatology. You may need to do a little extra research and decide specifically what tradition's views or what doctrinal framework you are really interested in learning more about. See these meta posts for more tips on asking site-appropriate questions.
    – Caleb
    Commented May 2, 2014 at 9:26

3 Answers 3



The answer is No! We have a living prophet on the earth today by the name of Thomas S. Monson. Christ's church was restored to the earth by a young prophet by the name of Joseph Smith Jr. This I know through fasting and prayer. Is there individual apostasy? Yes.

What is an apostasy? An Apostasy is a general falling away from the truth. This occurred after the death of the apostles. (Amos 8:11-12; Acts 20:29-30; 2 Timothy 4:3).

When Jesus Christ lived on the earth, He established His Church. After His Ascension into heaven, His Apostles carried on His work under His direction, through revelation and with His priesthood authority.

After the Apostles and many righteous Church members were killed and other members departed from the truth, the Lord took the priesthood authority and His Church from the earth. Without God’s priesthood authority, the Church no longer functioned as Christ had established it. The ordinances were changed and many plain and simple truths were lost. While many good people and some truth remained, the original Church was lost.

The Apostles prophesied of the falling away or Apostasy. One example is Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians (2 Thessalonians 2:1-3).

Restitution of All Things

The Apostle Peter prophesied of the “restitution of all things” before Christ’s Second Coming (Acts 3:19-21). Having been lost because of the Apostasy, Christ’s Church and His authority were to be restored to the earth. This Restoration would make available the opportunity for all to receive once again all of the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Joseph Smith’s First Vision marked the beginning of the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth. In subsequent years, Christ restored His priesthood and reorganized His Church. He has continued to reveal truths to His prophets and to restore the blessings that were taken from the earth for a time.

Joseph Smith

At fourteen years old, Joseph had a desire to find the truth. Like the rest of his family, he was deeply religious, and when the time came for him to be baptized, Joseph had to decide which of the many Christian denominations to join. After careful study, he still felt confused. He later wrote,

"So great were the confusion and strife among the different denominations, that it was impossible for a person young as I was [ … ] to come to any certain conclusion who was right and who was wrong [ … ] In the midst of this war of words and tumult of opinions, I often said to myself: What is to be done? Who of all these parties are right; or, are they all wrong together? If any one of them be right, which is it, and how shall I know it?" (Joseph Smith-History 1:8, 10).

Joseph turned to the Bible for guidance. He read:

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him" (James 1:5).

This verse deeply impressed him. He decided to pray about what he should do, with simple faith that God would hear and answer him.

In the spring of 1820, Joseph went to a grove of trees near his home and knelt in prayer. He described his experience:

"I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me [ … ] When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other-This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!" (Joseph Smith-History 1:16-17).

This vision of Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ was the beginning of Joseph Smith's calling as a prophet of God. He was told that none of the churches on the earth had the fullness of truth. Over time, Joseph Smith was chosen to establish Christ's Church and restore the priesthood, or the authority to act in God's name. He was led by God to an ancient record and given the ability to translate it into English. This record is called the Book of Mormon. He continued to pray and receive revelation for the Church throughout his life. These revelations were compiled into a book of scriptures referred to as the Doctrine and Covenants and shows that God still leads His children today. Joseph Smith formally organized The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 6, 1830. (Video Rendition)


I provide a classical protestant view common during and shortly after the reformation. Yes.

Luther, Calvin and the Puritan’s naturally understood these last days to be principally fulfilled in the rise and formation of the Roman Catholic Church. Ironically as it was a common prophecy with Paul and the rest of the apostles, everywhere making it known in the early church that there would be a coming ‘falling away’ from the truth within the professing visible church, the actual accomplishment of that falling away was the rise of an ecclesiastical power who claimed could never fall away!

Here is example of a typical view of this falling away during the reformation:

He is speaking about those apostasies which militate against the righteousness of faith. Against that point they introduce as much hypocrisy as they can, as the pope does. Thus he teaches that virgins in the monastery and celibate priests have a holy state. You ought to give rewards to virgins and celibates. Thus the pope has established celibacy as the kind of life that would open heaven. There Christ is lost. Not only heaven does it earn but also eternal life. Chastity is looked upon as if one must earn grace thereby. Take a look at the pope to see whether he does not teach everything this way. Whoever is obedient to the pope will be saved; whoever removes anything, etc. This is a curse against God and Peter and Paul. This constitutes searing a conscience, when men are forced to fulfill commands with great zeal and yet do not succeed. Hypocrisy develops from it, and they go against faith. He has seduced the entire world with chastity and the Mass. (Luther’s works, vol. 28 Lectures on 1 Timothy)

However, most reformed Protestants saw the antichrist a spirit that begun more faintly very early, prior to Catholicism. In addition, the prophecy seems to predict an even greater falling away near the end of the world when ‘the’ antichrist will be revealed and the Lord will return (2 Thess 2:3).

Therefore from a classical Protestant view is that the falling away happened very early in the Christian era. Furthermore although the reformation made a big move towards restoring the church, it was yet not complete at all and the apostasy continued in many ways until this day. Not only did it continue in the continued Catholic Church but new cults and churches arise each century falling away fresh from the primitive gospel recorded in the scriptures and preached by the Apostles. Finally the apostasy will worsen in the last days of the Christian era before the second coming of Christ.

  • This is a very good answer.
    – user9485
    Commented May 2, 2014 at 7:04

Compnion Verses of I Timothy 4;1,3 KJV

II Timothy 4;3,4

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

II Thessalonians 2;3

Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

I Thessalonians Chapter 4 and Chapter 5, elaborate on " falling away " and, on who believers are, and how they are to conduct themselves, unto the coming of Jesus Christ. Chapter 4; 1-12 is provided to address the phrase " falling away " (apostasy is not used in my bible, KJV.)

I Thessalonians 4; 1-12

1 Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as you have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.

2 For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.

3 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

4 That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour;

5 Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God:

6 That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified.

7 For God has not called us unto uncleanness, but to holiness.

8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.

9 But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.

10 And indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more;

11 And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you:

12 That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without, and that ye may have lack of nothing.

Are we still living in the great apostasy?

Yes , we are living in a time of uncertianity and doubt, believers are leaving their church for the signs and wonders of the world. Christendom is clearly losing the battle for men's souls. As in times past, the world is invading the church.

  • Agreed to some degree, but if the biblical definition of "apostasy" is to leave one's faith, then every religion which branched from another is apostate, and every person leaving because of the child molestation on the news is an apostate. By definition then, everyone in the family tree of modern "christian religion" is apostate. Or are we keeping "religious faith" as a term independent of a given denomination?
    – user9485
    Commented May 2, 2014 at 2:47
  • Thank you. There should be no question about " falling away" I didn't like the apostasy definition from the beginning.
    – V. Rollins
    Commented May 2, 2014 at 6:13