Who are the Nicholaitans mentioned in the Book of Revelation, and what are the works Jesus and the believers in Ephesus hate?

  • Welcome to Christianity Stack. When you have a moment, please take our tour and visit our help center to learn more about us: christianity.stackexchange.com/tour – Lesley Jul 28 '18 at 8:33
  • Not all questions work well in our format. Avoid questions that are primarily opinion-based, or that are likely to generate discussion rather than answers. It also helps to specify which religious denominations/groups you seek information from, e.g., Catholic, Orthodox, Reformed Protestant. And it helps if you show research you have done and especially which part of the Bible your question is based on. I take it you refer to Revelation 2:6? Perhaps you could edit your question to invite evidence-based answers rather that personal opinions. – Lesley Jul 28 '18 at 8:39
  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicolaism. Wikipedia – Kris Jul 28 '18 at 12:14
  • 3

Nicolas was a proselyte of Antioch. Irenaeus [130-202 A.D.] was of the opinion that he was the founder of the Nicolaitans.

Acts_6:5  And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch:

The following is extracted from Wikipedia.

Several of the early church fathers mentioned this group, including Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Epiphanius, and Theodoret, stating that deacon Nicolas was the author of the heresy and sect. Irenaeus in Adversus Haereses III. xi. 1; I. xxvi. 3 holds that the Gospel of John was written to counter the teachings of Cerinthus, which he holds was spread by the Nicolaitans. But when Irenaeus focuses on them later, he only presents them as the Book of Revelation did, with no explanation how they can be held to have the doctrines of Cerinthius. "The Nicolaitanes are the followers of that Nicolas who was one of the seven first ordained to the diaconate by the apostles. They lead lives of unrestrained indulgence. The character of these men is very plainly pointed out in the Apocalypse of John, [when they are represented] as teaching that it is a matter of indifference to practice adultery and to eat things sacrificed to idols."— Irenaeus, Adversus haereses, i. 26, §3

Hippolytus of Rome shared the opinion that Nicolas became a heresiarch (in Refutation of All Heresies vii. 24). In other writings of the early Church, this connection is disputed and the Nicolaitans are said to be "falsely so called" (ψευδώνυμοι). Clement of Alexandria put forward a defense of Nicolas (in Stromata ii. 20, iii. 4) which Eusebius accepts and repeats (in Historia Ecclesiastica iii. 29).


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.