Questions tagged [church-history]

The history of the Church following the book of Acts

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The year 1000 anxiety?

They say that before the end of the first millennium there was widespread anxiety or fear on account of the end of the world predicted for the year 1000 A.D. in the apocryphal gospels. Do you know ...
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Does 19th century Canadian Presbyterian teaching prohibit wearing flowers to church?

Cross-posted from History SE, since comments there indicate this might be the more appropriate SE. In the novel Anne of Green Gables, Anne wears a hat with flowers in it to church, and is criticized ...
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Leadership over smaller churches in early Christianity

I have heard a claim that during the early Church, bigger churches had leadership positions over smaller churches, which later developed into the idea of a single bishop ruling a dicosese. Are there ...
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Between Protestants & Catholics what are the major disagreements with respect to Church history?

I’ve recently wondered at the claims that the Catholic Church had stated that they began 2,000 years ago, and that the Protestant church only began back with Martin Luther or in the 1500’s. In terms ...
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What, if anything, is known about the practice of baptism for the dead in the early church?

1 Cor 15 mentions church members performing baptisms for the dead. Apart from that, no further reference to this practice exists in the Bible as far as I am aware. What, if anything, is known about ...
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According to Protestant NT scholars/historians did Gamaliel get the chronology & history wrong in Acts 5?

I was listening on (audio) to Wayne Grudem’s systematic theology and in the chapter on biblical inerrancy.. he mentioned some people dispute Gamaliel's historical accuracy on certain uprisings, and ...
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Did St. John Chrysostom believe in papal primacy?

Did St. John Chrysostom believe in papal papacy—i.e., that the pope has supreme power and primacy over the entire Church?
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Did the early church allow statues and images in church?

Protestants are against having statues and images and often quote Exodus 20:4, but Catholics and Orthodox Christians have beautiful statues and images in their church, but did the Early Church Fathers ...
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Did the early church believe in self defence?

Does any of the early church fathers teach that we as Christians are allowed to defend ourselves if our life is in severe danger and if so what church fathers taught this?
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What was the early churches view on head-covering for women?

A somewhat controversial topic, but there are certain verses in the bible such as 1 Corinthians 11 which command women to wear head-covering in church, but was was the early church view of women ...
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Is there any evidence to the devotion of Mary in the early church? [duplicate]

Roman Catholics and the Orthodox Church venerate or give devotion to Mary, but is there any evidence of this within the Early Church Fathers or is this nothing more than a later development?
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When did small bite-sized portions become the norm for Communion?

In most churches nowadays, Communion involves a sip or small cup of wine or juice along with a wafer or bite-sized piece of bread. This seems different from Communion as described in the gospels and 1 ...
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What was the Early Church Fathers' view of female teachers in the Church?

There is a lot of debate between Roman Catholics and Protestants on if women can be reverends or pastors within the church and have and maintain a leadership role. What was the early church fathers' ...
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Were the Early Church Fathers pacifists?

My friend is a pacifist Christian and said that not only was Jesus Christ a pacifist, but that the Early Church Fathers as well were pacifist - is this true and was the early church pacifist, if so ...
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Was the theory of many extraterrestrial worlds considered blasphemous by the Roman Catholic Church during the 16th century?

According to Martiniz A. A., the main accusation of Giordano Bruno from the inquisition is simply the ideas of many-worlds: No other accusation was invoked even half as much. In another reference ...
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What was the Early Church’s view on socialism? [closed]

I am fundamentally opposed to socialist but I was reading the Bible and came across ‭‭Acts‬ ‭4:32-35, where it says they practiced what looks like socialism. Now the full number of those who believed ...
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What was the Early Church Fathers’ teachings on the death penalty?

I am supportive of the death penalty and believe it to be justified biblically, but what was the Early Church Fathers (out as late as 600 AD) view of the death penalty and did they have one? I am ...
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According to Protestantism, why is Hermeneutics necessary if we have the Holy Spirit?

We can understand in Protestant circles that Biblical Hermeneutics are important; for without such methods of interpretation the Scripture becomes “hard to understand” in many portions & passages. ...
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Was there a time before the East-West schism where heretics outnumbered Catholics?

I am curious whether there was any one heresy that commanded a large enough following that the orthodox Catholics were outnumbered? The scope of this question is worldwide The point of view is the ...
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Did any Early Church Fathers approve of polygamy?

This question asks whether any Early Church Fathers condemned polygamy. The answer seems to be 'yes'. Did any Early Church Fathers approve of polygamy?
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Did the Early Church Fathers condemn polygamy?

Today I was debating with a Christian who believes in polygamy and claimed that the Early Church Fathers allowed for the act of polygamy, is that true and is there any evidence that the Early Church ...
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According to the Catholic church, was there a New Testament writer who was not a bishop?

When writing my answer to another question about the teaching authority of the NT writers (as Magisterium), I was wondering whether any author of the 27 books of the New Testament was not a bishop? ...
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How did so many writings of St. John Chrysostom survive?

We have an astonishing number of extant writings by St. John Chrysostom. One source says: Chrysostom is among the most prolific of the Fathers: 17 treatises, more than 700 authentic homilies, ...
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How do believers in the Great Apostasy reconcile their views with Matthew 16:18?

From the Wikipedia article on the Great Apostasy: The Great Apostasy is a concept within Christianity, identifiable at least from the time of the Reformation, to describe a perception that the early ...
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Has the Catholic Church ever canonized a trans-gender person with the full knowledge of his/her true gender identity?

We read in Mtt 19:12: For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the ...
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When did the practice of administration of Holy Communion to the faithful on daily basis originate?

It is evident from the history of the Church that the frequency of administering of Holy Communion to the faithful varied from time to time. I wish to know when and on what basis, the present ...
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When were Protestants first called 'Protestants' and what were they, originally, protesting about?

I am asking, precisely, the first time when 'Protestants' were so called, either among themselves or by others. And what, precisely, they were in protestation regarding. There is a previous question ...
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Why are Catholic Churches named after saints?

I'm curious why all the Catholic churches (with the exception of the ones named sacred/immaculate heart) are named after Saints. Why is this?
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When did daily mass for the public start to be offered?

When did daily mass for the public start to be offered? The answer should have a citation of the mass being offered not simply on a weekday (such as on a veneration day for a saint), but on a daily ...
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2 answers
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When did the Catholic Church decide 'daily bread" is its Eucharist?

The Catholic Church Catechism defines daily bread is Eucharist (p 2837), but I have searched the early church in vain to find this definition. When did the Catholic Church decide that Jesus meant give ...
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How do proponents of the 'Critical Text' respond to the claim that it preserves an anti-Trinitarian corruption dating from the fifth century?

When Dr Vance Smith, a Unitarian, was appointed to the Committee to revise the Authorised Version, public opinion objected to the appointment and Drs Westcott and Hort (Hort, also, leaning towards ...
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Did any in the early church require a kosher diet?

In the early church, we see statements suggesting that the dietary laws of clean/unclean meats from Old Testament passages such as Leviticus 11 are no longer binding. For example: As for their [the ...
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What changes did Erasmus want to make in the Catholic Church?

Can someone please provide a list of reforms that Erasmus wanted to make to the Catholic Church?
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Was the term “The Way'” officially used as a synonym for Christianity during the ages?

We get a glimpse of Jesus'intention to establish a new religion in Mtt 16:18 (NRSVCVE): And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail ...
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Have other group visitations of the Holy Spirit similar to Acts 4:23-31 been reported in church history?

Acts 4:23-31 (ESV): 23 When they were released, they went to their friends and reported what the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 And when they heard it, they lifted their voices ...
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After Chiliasm slowly died a natural death once the 3rd and 4th centuries saw no literal 1000 year reign of Christ on earth, when did it resurface?

This question has some interesting background information on Church councils not having anything to say about Chiliasm: Does the Nicene Creed condemn Chiliasm? but my question seeks to know what ...
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Why didn't Polycarp mention John in his Epistle?

Polycarp is said to be a student of the Apostle John. Yet he never mentions it in his epistle, nor does he quote the Gospel of John. Why is that?
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What is the difference between Anabaptist and Baptist?

I see the term "Anabaptist" and "Baptist" being used quite a bit. Both believe in not baptizing your babies. But what is the difference between them? There seems to be some ...
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How do non-episcopal Protestants respond to St. Ignatius who says you need a Deacon, Priest, and Bishop for a Church?

St. Ignatius of Antioch, an early Martyr with connection to the apostles, wrote that a Deacon, Priest, and Bishop were needed for the Church: “See that ye all follow the bishop, even as Jesus Christ ...
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Can the Pentecostal/Charismatic belief in "territorial spirits" and "Strategic-Level Spiritual Warfare" be traced back to prior sources?

According to the Wikipedia article on Territorial spirit: Territorial spirits are national angels, or demons, who rule over certain geographical areas in the world, a concept accepted within the ...
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How did the early 20th century Pentecostals interpret healing or its absence during the 1918 Influenza pandemic?

Azusa Street Revival was just concluded in 1915 and the Assemblies of God denomination was just founded in 1914 when a few years later the 1918 Influenza pandemic hit which lasted to the summer of ...
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What is the Cessationist view on miracle reports surrounding St. Macarius of Egypt?

Macarius of Egypt: Macarius of Egypt (c. 300 – 391) was a Coptic Christian monk and hermit. He is also known as Macarius the Elder or Macarius the Great. St. Macarius was born in Lower Egypt. A late ...
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How is the claim that the doctrine of Papal Supremacy has not always existed within the Church substantiated? [duplicate]

Papal Supremacy means this: Papal supremacy is the doctrine of the Catholic Church that the Pope, by reason of his office as Vicar of Christ, the visible source and foundation of the unity both of ...
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How long has it been a custom to bow at the mention of the Incarnation?

I asked a question a few years ago and it was mentioned in a anecdote concerning the devil from 1374 that people were genuflecting at the mention of the incarnation https://christianity.stackexchange....
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1 answer
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When did the Catholic Church first distinguish mortal from venial sin and connect it to state of grace?

I understand that Catholic theology cites biblical basis for distinguishing mortal from venial sin (see Catholic Answers Mortal and Venial Sin). But when was the first known practice where the ...
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What is the history of religious orders? [closed]

There are religious orders in the Catholic faith (though they may exist elsewhere) such as the Dominicans, the Franciscans, and the Benedictines. What lead to the founding of groups like these? What ...
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Has it always been difficult for churches to reach the next generation?

Has the church always had a tough battle when it comes to reaching the younger generation? Is the current lack of interest from the younger generation unique to today, or has that always been a ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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How common have reports of paranormal activity and ghost or spirit apparitions been among Christians throughout history?

My question is inspired by the gospels of Matthew and Luke. Concretely, by Matthew 14:26-27 and Luke 24:36-39: 26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Why was "lay investiture" condemned?

What was the Investiture Controversy and lay investiture, and why exactly was it condemned? Fr. Hardon, S.J., defines "lay investiture": The act by which a sovereign, in the Middle Ages, ...
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Unique Catholic Blessings of local Churches?

Unique Catholic Blessings of local Churches? Just as I asked this question concerning Catholic feasts of local Churches, I would like to know if some readers here know of any local blessings attached ...
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