Church History, Lesson 8: The Last of the Apostles’ Students, Ignatius and Polycarp

Ignatius and Polycarp 2

Intro Ignatius Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 AD) was the 3rd Bishop of Antioch.  Late in Emperor Trajan’s reign (98-117 AD), he was arrested for being a Christian, chosen because of his status and profile.  So, he was taken to Rome under a guard of 10 soldiers to face martyrdom. On the way, Christians gathered to […]

Church History, Lesson 4: The Didache, Pt. 1

The Didache 2a

Recap In 49 AD, the Church met in her first council to resolve issues of incorporating Gentiles into, then, an ethnically Jewish Church.  The Gentiles did not need to be circumcised for, as the Apostle Paul would later write, baptism supersedes circumcision in the New Covenant (Colossians 2:11-13). However, Gentiles did need to give up […]

Lessons on the Didache

The Didache (610x370)

The Didache is the earliest, non-Biblical document in the New Testament Church.  It was complied by the Church to teach adult, Gentile converts aspects of the Christian Faith. The date of the Didache is as early as the mid-50s AD, after the Gospel of Matthew was written and had circulated, but the other three Gospels […]

The Didache, Lesson 1: Introduction

Twelve Apostles (610x351)

The Didache: Lesson 1, Introduction January 1, 2012 “Didache” (pronounced: dih-dah-KAY) is the Greek word for “doctrine” or “teaching” (as a noun).  It has two titles: “The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles,” followed by “The Lord’s teaching to the Gentiles by the Twelve Apostles.” Today, many Christians, including Lutherans, view the Bible as the final […]

Baptism in the Early Church: Part 3

Infant Baptism

DID THE EARLY CHURCH BAPTIZE INFANTS? Of the five existing apostolic churches, all currently baptize infants.  This leads one to conclude that the apostolic church baptized infants–unless the practice of infant baptism developed later and then spread to all the apostolic churches (historically unlikely, but possible).  Some modern-day scholars strongly oppose the idea that the […]

Baptism in the Early Church: Part 2

Baptism of Jesus

HOW THE EARLY CHURCH BAPTIZED Of the five existing apostolic churches, three baptize by, or prefer, immersion.  The Roman Catholic and Syrian Orthodox Churches baptize by affusion.  However, the Syrian Orthodox Church calls immersion an “old practice” it used to perform.[1]  And so, historically, the apostolic churches prefer to perform baptism by immersion.  However, what […]

Baptism in the Early Church: Part 1

Ethiopian Coptic Baptism

Baptism and the Early Church: The “How” and the “Who” A paper presented to the Springfield Pastors’ Circuit of the Missouri District, Jan 12, 2010 By Pr. Rich Futrell This paper takes a brief look into the early Christian church practices on baptism.  The historical era looked into will be after the period covered in St. Luke’s […]