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Chi Rho - from the Book of Kells

  

Disputation of Rev Dr Brian B Michael John Mackenzie-Hanson on the Legitimacy of the twenty-one Ecumenical Councils, the Divinity of Yeshua Christ, the Trinity, the Petrine Primacy, the Virgin Birth, Idolatry and other Apostasies and Heresies recognised and advocated in whole or in part by the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Protestant and associated churches in the face of our Lord’s immutable and irreformable Church.

 

 

© Wednesday 31st October 2007

 

 

 

By Rev Dr Brian B Michael John Mackenzie-Hanson, BA (Hons), DD,

Doctor of Divinity, Elder, Overseer and Primate of the Arian Catholic Church,

In the Archdiocese of York.

 

 

forum.arian-catholic.org

 

arian-catholic.org


On or shortly after 31st October 1517 Dr Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the doors of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany, and published the 95 theses that were distributed throughout Europe, voicing his disputations with the Roman Catholic church challenging the teachings of the Church on the nature of penance, the authority of the pope and the usefulness of indulgences. This sparked a theological debate that resulted in the Reformation and the birth of the Lutheran, Reformed, and Anabaptist traditions within Christianity. Four hundred and ninety years later to the day the Roman Catholic church has still chosen not to heed all the warnings that were presented to it. Furthermore, unbeknown to Dr Martin Luther, there were many other points of Apostasy and Heresy upon which both the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches have been parties to, and since that time, the Protestant and other associated churches have still blindly followed, not daring to question. The time has now come for these churches to be called to account and for the truth to be debated publicly.

 

Therefore:

Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed on-line at http://forum.arian-catholic.org/ , under the presidency of the Reverend Father Brian B. Michael John Mackenzie-Hanson, Doctor of Divinity, Elder, Overseer and Primate of the Arian Catholic Church. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to participate and debate with us may do so by e-mail or by letter.

In the name of Yeshua the Messiah, son of God. Amen.

_______________________________

 

1           The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church in 367 AD (ref: letter of Athanasius of Alexandria) and in-turn the Eastern Orthodox, Protestant and associated churches (hereinafter referred to as “the churches”) to alter the arrangement of the 24 Holy books of the Hebrew Tanakh into the 39 books of the Old Testament; the omission of revered texts from the New Testament and broader New Testament Canons that were appealed to by early Church fathers. Thus rendering the Bible into an incomplete volume of 66 books, excluding the Apocrypha (or Deuterocanonical books). [top]

1.1           The omitted texts include: Baruch, 3 & 4 Maccabees, the 151st Psalm, 3 & 4 Esdras and the Prayer of Manasseh from either the Roman Catholic, Protestant, Eastern Orthodox or Slavonic bibles that are found in the early manuscripts, the omission of revered texts such as the Shepherd of Hermas, the Epistle of Barnabas, Gospel of Thomas, the Apocalypse of Peter and the Didaché (the Didaché was considered by some of the Church Fathers as part of the New Testament but rejected as spurious by others, eventually not accepted into the New Testament canon with the exception of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church “broader canon”. The Roman Catholic Church has recently accepted it as part of the collection of Apostolic Fathers.), and omitting the book of the Apocalypse of Enoch from the Old Testament Apocrypha that is referenced in the New Testament Epistle of Jude 1:14-15. [top]

2           The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church teaching Christianity from translations of the errant Greek Septuagint and Latin Vulgate and ignoring the Hebrew version of the Tanakh, even when overwhelmingly supported by the Dead Sea Scrolls. Even the Authorised Version (King James Version of 1611) was translated from Greek scriptures (Editio Princeps) some of which were reverse translated from the Latin Vulgate back into Greek by Desiderius Erasmus to fill-in missing documents before being re-translated into English thereby creating textual readings found today in no surviving Greek manuscripts. [top]

3           The ignorance and wickedness of the churches to refuse to entertain (and accuse of Heresy) the Gospel of Thomas, completely preserved in a papyrus Coptic manuscript discovered at Naj’ Hamadi in 1945, and three separate Greek portions of the Gospel where discovered in Oxyrhynchus, in 1898. It is held by Theological Scholars the world over as the closest and least corrupted writings of the words of Yeshua the Messiah available to date in the form of a sayings Gospel, believed to form part of the lost texts known as Q1 and Q2 (dated about 40 - 50 AD), along with the Gospel according to Mark and elements unique to the Gospels according to Matthew and Luke (known as Sondergut, or special material), and is believed to have been compiled about 100 AD. The churches regard the Gospel of Thomas as Gnostic heresy, yet it contains none of the Valentinian Gnostic theology commonly found in second century Gnostic texts. Given that the Gospel according to John contains pro-Gnostic references such as 8:58 (“…before Abraham was, I AM.”) and is not considered to be a Gnostic Gospel, scholars assert that the Gospel of Thomas is not actually Gnostic (ref: Elaine Pagels, Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas, 2003 (New York: Random House)). [top]

4           The illegitimacy and Apostate Heresy of the first Ecumenical Council of Nicaea in 325 AD. Records show that the bishop of Rome, Sylvester I, did not attend and exercised no authority when the Pagan high priest of Rome, Emperor Constantine I, presided over and set about making changes to the doctrine’s of the immutable and irreformable Church, thus creating a Christo-Pagan sect known today as the Roman Catholic church and from which the Eastern Orthodox and Protestant churches have sprung. [top]

5           The Heresy of the church’s claim of the divinity of Yeshua the Messiah and their claim for his homoousian nature with God. Clearly in Philippians 2:6-9 we see that Yeshua the man was completely human and the spirit of Yeshua (Immanuel) is homoiosian in nature with God (that “Iota” of difference!) and is therefore subordinate to God. The latter is explained in more detail in the Book of Proverbs 8:22-31, which states that he was created by God at the beginning of time and how he was subordinate to God. For Yeshua’s spirit, Immanuel, to have been created, that proves that there must have been a time when he did not exist. [top]

6           The Heresy and Apostasy of the churches’ claim for the doctrine of the Trinity. The Apostasy began when trinitarianism was incorporated into Roman Catholic doctrine at the first ecumenical council of Nicaea in 325 AD presided over by the Pagan High Priest and Emperor of Rome: Constantine I; whom had little interest in Christianity at the time other than the political and military gains with which he could benefit, and only being baptised, as an Arian, on his deathbed in 337 AD by Eusebius the Arian Bishop of Nicomedia. For the trinitarian bishops, the financial returns more than justified the compromise with “God’s word.” [top]

7           The concept of the trinity was first written about by Tertullian of Carthage ((140-230 AD), a Roman Montanist heretic and the son of a Roman Centurion), at the end of the second century where he copied elements of Hindu and Greek ideologies. The trinity was not formally introduced into Roman Christianity until the first Council of Nicaea in 325 AD. Its justification is based loosely on linking different passages scattered between the Old and New Testaments, which only serve to play on ambiguities between different contextual styles, and then concluding that only God is capable of salvation, ignorant of the fact that God can work through his son (Jeremiah 31:33, Hebrews 8:10). Also the concept of the Holy Spirit to be the part of a trinity was completely unknown to Yeshua and was never advocated by him. When Emperor Constantine supposedly embraced Christianity, he insisted that the Christian Church adopted many changes so that the new Roman Catholic church would be familiar to the superstitious Romans, including the deification of Yeshua the Messiah and the Holy Spirit, and the polytheising of God through the Trinity. [top]

8           The early Church was NOT trinitarian! Even the Apostles’ Creed (believed to have been written about the middle of the second century) does not refer to the trinity, the divinity of Yeshua or the Holy Spirit, referring to them only as separate entities, something that would have been far too important to miss-out if it had been part of the doctrine of the early Church. In fact, the concept of the trinity was unheard of by the early Christians and never advocated by Yeshua the Messiah. It is clear that the early Christians were monotheistic both by instinct and by teaching. They lived in the very centre of monotheistic faith and it was logically impossible for them to regard Yeshua in a way that would annihilate the absolute gulf that existed in their mind between man and God (1 Timothy 2:5 “For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human,”). Consequently, Yeshua remained essentially distinct from deity. The role, which early Christians had attributed to Yeshua, was of Messiah. It had a connotation, which adhered to Orthodox Judaism and conformed to Jewish nationalistic aspirations. This is obvious from Acts 1:6 when the disciples ask Yeshua: “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom of Israel?” [top]

9           Yeshua never taught the trinity, and nowhere in the early scriptures is there a reference to the trinity found. Trinitarians would point to the following verses in an attempt to prove the trinity, however their arguments are based upon both flawed texts that were born out of the fourth century and misrepresentations of passages quoted out of their context:

9.1           1 John 5:7-8 (Comma Johanneum): The “Johannine Comma” does not exist in the early Greek manuscripts, it was inserted into the Textus Receptus, probably from a redaction of a copy of the Latin Vulgate prior to the publication of the third edition of the Textus Receptus in 1522. [top]

9.2           1 Timothy 3:16 (God/who): Versions of 1 Timothy 3:16 translated from the Latin Vulgate and Byzantine manuscripts include a reference to Yeshua as “God” (from “ΘΣ” a nomina sacra of ΘΕΟΣ), however earlier manuscripts such as the Codex Alexandrinus uses the word “who” (from “ΟΣ”), the Greek word having a line that has bled through from the other side of the vellum making, at first glance, the “Ο” (omicron) look like a “Θ” (theta). [top]

9.3           Matthew 28:19 (Great Commission): Eusebius wrote that he believed that in the Gospel According to Matthew, verse 28:19, probably originally said: “Baptising in the name of Iesous Christ” instead of “the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit”; the former formula was clearly carried forward by the Apostles as in Acts 8:16. [top]

9.4           John 10:30 (referred to by Tertullian): John 10:30 was referred to by Tertullian as part of his attempt to suggest the existence of the trinity, “I and My Father are one”; however he quoted Yeshua out of context as five verses earlier (John 10:25) Yeshua says: “The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me.”, then in verse 29: “My Father ... is greater than all...” and then later in verses 34 – 36: “34 …Is it not written in your law, I said, ‘You are gods’? 35 If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), 36 do you say of Him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, You are blaspheming, because I said, I am the Son of God?” It is clear that Yeshua is saying that he is the son of God and that God works through those who are sanctified with the word of God, and in that sense the word of God is God. The Jews were ignorant and misunderstood what Yeshua told them; therefore, this is not a pro-trinitarian passage. The Gospel According to John was written during the first half of the second century AD and is believed to contain at least four significant redactions. In 1820, K.G. Bretschneider called into question the apostolic authorship of the Gospel According to John, and even stated that the author could not have come from Palestine, since the author had a shaky grasp of Palestinian geography. Furthermore, he reasoned that since the meaning and nature of Yeshua presented in the Gospel of John was very different from that in the Synoptic Gospels, its author could not have been an eyewitness to the events. [top]

9.5           In 1 Corinthians 8:5-6 we are told: “For although there be that are called gods, either in heaven or on earth (for there be gods many and lords many): Yet to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we unto him: and one Lord Yeshua the Messiah, by whom are all things, and we by him.” This distinctly non-trinitarian text makes it quite clear that Yeshua, although ranking highly, is subordinate to God and is not God. God the Father is the only one true God (and that does not include Yeshua) and gives clear testimony to the teachings of Yeshua and the apostles, which also makes no reference to a divine nature of the Holy Spirit. [top]

10        The Heresy of the churches in the Nicene Creeds of 325 and 381 AD and the Chalcedonian Creed of 451 AD, which set out to corrupt the message of Christianity that was laid out in the non-trinitarian second century Apostles’ Creed. These ecumenical councils set out to Romanise Christianity to cater for the polytheistic and superstitious pagan Romans. [top]

11        The Roman Catholic church points out that according to Thomas Aquinas, not only do the ceremonial portions of the Law (i.e. the Torah: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy) not apply now, but it is actually a “mortal sin” to keep these observances after the events of Christ’s Passion. Such suggestions are clearly heretical because by his life and by his preaching Yeshua the Messiah attested to the permanent validity of the Decalogue. The Law is described in various places as “everlasting” and none of it can terminate or expire; nor could anything that an unchanging God called “righteous” and “good” now have become “sin.” The Ten Commandments form part of the Everlasting Covenant and the same moral laws apply to both the followers of Abraham in the Old Testament and the followers of Yeshua the Messiah in the New Testament (ref: Galatians 3:29), as they also form the basis of the New Covenant. These moral commandments embody eternal principles that can never become obsolete. They are a transcript of the Almighty’s character and are as unchanging as God Himself. [top]

12        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox church’s veneration of Saints, which is a direct contravention of the first commandment: Exodus 20:3 (compare with Deuteronomy 5:7): “You shall have no other gods before Me.” [top]

13        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church at the seventh General Council of Nicaea in 787 AD to deny the second commandment being: Exodus 20:4-6 (compare with Deuteronomy 5:8-10): “4 You shall not make for yourself a carved image-any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; 5 you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.” Resulting in Roman Catholics being encouraged to pray and bow down to idols and statues of Yeshua the Messiah and saints. [top]

14        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church to order the Decalogue as preferred by St. Augustine, in dividing the tenth commandment into two, it appears without logic or reason other than to make up for the loss of the second commandment. Nowhere is a division of the Law mentioned in the Bible, but rather there is evidence that it is indivisible. The tenth commandment deals with one human trait, that of covetousness and is expressed in one complete sentence; it does not give of itself to be separated. In addition, the first line of the Commandment, in both the Hebrew and Protestant versions, reads, “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house...”  The Roman Catholic arrangement of the Decalogue makes “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife” the Ninth Commandment, and coveting the neighbour’s property the tenth. Roman Catholics use the Deuteronomy version as the source for the Ninth and Tenth Commandments. By doing this, they are placed in the position of accepting the reason for the observance of the Sabbath as the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt! In so doing the mutilated Roman Catholic arrangement leaves out vital details of the Biblical text, essential to the understanding of this Commandment. [top]

15        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church in its practice of venerating idols of Saints and of Yeshua the Messiah in its places of worship. That image worship is a degrading superstition and was condemned by the early Church Fathers in scathing terms, is one of the amazing contradictions of Roman Catholicism. St. Augustine, undoubtedly the foremost of the group, said: “He who worships an image turns the truth of God unto a lie.” [top]

15.1       Even the crucifix, which is worshiped and adored today, is as much an idolatrous instrument as the image of a man or woman. It was introduced as part of the worship of the church only in the latter part of the sixth century, and finally authorized by the Council of Constantinople (Council in Trullo) in 692 AD. The crucifix was unknown until the sixth century, and liberal Protestants still abhor its use as being a macabre idol and beneath the dignity of an intelligent person. To early Christians the crucifix would have been equivalent to a symbol of the gallows or an electric chair today! [top]

15.2       The Christians of France, Germany and England condemned the action of the Seventh General Council (at Nicaea in 787 AD) authorizing the worship of images, and foremost among the opponents was Charlemagne. [top]

16        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church in abandoning the Sabbath on Saturday in favour of the Roman High day of the Sun god, being Sunday. While the Eastern Orthodox church still maintains Saturday as the Sabbath and observes Sunday as the Lord’s day, the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches teach that the Apostles instituted the observance of Sunday instead of the Saturday; this is false doctrine and apostasy deceiving the faithful into breaking the fourth (Roman Catholic third) Commandment:

16.1       In Acts 20:7 it indicates that the Christians at Troas met “for the breaking of bread” on Sunday, the first day of the week, and 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 says that the Christians should lay aside something on Sunday so that no collection would be needed when St Paul arrived. In their proper context, the former event suggests that the disciples were gathered together for their own protection out of fear of attack from the Jews. The latter event occurred in the evening, because the passage refers to lamps being lit, yet to the Jews 2000 years ago, Sunday evening was our Saturday evening because the day began at sunset and finished at sunset the next day; therefore this was merely the evening at the end of the Sabbath. If St Paul considered Sunday to be the Sabbath then he would not have set out on foot to Assos on Sunday morning. Sunday worship in the later Church was not keeping the Sabbath, but a commemoration of Pentecost and the resurrection-day which are events falling on Sundays. [top]

16.2       The Lord’s Day was described as replacing the Sabbath in an anti-Judaistic passage of the Didaché: To the Magnesians 9:2, but the passage ends with “...though some deny this.” However, there are numerous references to Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) and the apostles observing the seventh day Sabbath in the New Testament:

16.2.1       Matthew 24:14-20: This passage, referred to as the “Olivet Prophecy”, describes the second coming of Yeshua. Yeshua recommends in verse 20 that everyone pray: “...that your flight be not in the winter, neither on a Sabbath”. Clearly, Yeshua knew that the followers of his Church would still observe the Sabbath at the time of the second coming.

16.2.2       Mark 2:23-28: Yeshua and his disciples plucked ears of corn from the fields on the Sabbath day, and were severely criticized by the Pharisees. Yeshua replied that when King David was hungry, he ate the showbread in the temple. Yeshua concludes by saying that the Sabbath was made for man; man was not made for the Sabbath. Yeshua showed that the Mosaic Law was never intended to be applied so absolutely that it would take precedence over the necessities of daily life.

16.2.3       Mark 3:1-5: In this and many other Gospel passages, Yeshua was severely criticized by the Pharisees because he collected food and healed people on the Sabbath. Yeshua observed the Sabbath, but criticized the Pharisees’ overly strict rules and regulations concerning the day of rest. He emphasized throughout his ministry a different purpose for the Sabbath: a day to be enjoyed by the believer, and a time when many normal activities, particularly those that help others, were quite permissible.

16.2.4       Luke 4:16: Yeshua is described as entering the synagogue on the Sabbath, and teaching there, as was his custom. Similar messages appear in Mark 1:21, Mark 6:2, Luke 4:31, Luke 6:6, Luke 13:10, and John 5:14.

16.2.5       Luke 23:56: The women followers of Yeshua “rested according to the commandment” on the Sabbath following Yeshua’s death. In Mark 16:1, three of Yeshua’s female followers waited until the Sabbath was over at sundown on Saturday before bringing spices to anoint Yeshua’s body.

16.2.6       Acts 13:14: Paul and Barnabas observed the Sabbath in the synagogue in Antioch. See also Acts 16:13, Acts 17:2, Acts 18:4. [top]

16.3       Later Christians were under pressure to distance themselves from and not to advertise their similarity to Judaism as not only were they persecuted by the Romans but by the Jews also. Roman Paganism and Pagan Mithraism used the day of the Sun-god (Sunday) as their main day of worship as opposed to Saturn’s day (Saturday), this put further pressure and temptation on Christians to follow suit, although Saturday remained the official Sabbath day. It was in 321 AD when the Pagan High Priest and Sun-worshipper Emperor Constantine I declared Sunday as the official day of worship and this was reinforced when the regional church council of Laodicea circa 364 AD ordered, amid opposition, that religious observances were to be conducted on Sunday, not Saturday. Sunday became the new Apostate Sabbath. They ruled: “Christians shall not Judaize and be idle on Saturday, but shall work on that day.” There are many indicators in the historical record that some Christians ignored the church’s ruling. Sabbath observance was noted in Wales as late as 1115 AD. Francis Xavier was concerned about Sabbath worship in Goa, India in 1560 AD; he called for the Inquisition to set up an office there to stamp out what he called “Jewish wickedness”. A Roman Catholic Provincial Council suppressed the practice in Norway in 1435 AD. [top]

16.4       There is no biblical evidence that Yeshua, his disciples, or apostles celebrated the Sabbath on Sundays (the Lord’s Day) or the Lord’s Day in preference to the Sabbath; and there is no internal evidence that would justify the Christian Church changing the day from that commanded in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament). [top]

17        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church and the later churches following the Council of Nicaea in making the traditional birthday of the Roman Sun god on 25th December (i.e. what was believed to be the Winter Solstice) become the birthday of Yeshua. The birth date of Yeshua the Messiah has always been an uncertain date but was observed on the same date as the Epiphany in the early Church (6th January), marking the coming of the Magi and the baptism of Yeshua the Messiah. NB According to Luke 3:23 Yeshua was baptised when he was “about 30” years old, which could suggest that his 30th birthday was near. [top]

18        The Apostasy of the churches, in adopting the Roman date of Easter in replacement of the biblical Passover held on Nisan 14. At the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, records show that the bishop of Rome, Sylvester I, did not attend and exercised no authority when the Pagan high priest of Rome , Constantine I, set the date for Easter. The early Church had maintained the Christian Passover, as celebrated by Yeshua the Messiah at the Last Supper (Mark 14:22-25), amid increasing popularity for a controversial and confusing anti-Semitic Roman date for Easter. [top]

19        The churches have knowingly continued to promote the false doctrine of the Virgin Birth, originally based on a mistranslation of the prophecies of Isaiah, which bears similarity to the Pagan man-god myth of Mithras, and promoted to support the trinitarian myth:

19.1       The writer of the Gospel according to Matthew clearly had a copy of the Book of Isaiah (from the Septuagint) in his other hand as he wrote (tying in the prophecies of Isaiah at the beginning and end of his Gospel); it appears that some twisting of the facts to fit the prophecies had occurred. He even quotes in Matthew 1:23 an excerpt from Isaiah 7:14, BUT in doing so he uses the erroneous 2nd century BC Greek translation of Isaiah and NOT the original Hebrew text. [top]

19.2       The error in the Greek translation of the book of Isaiah is still carried forward to this day in most bibles e.g. the New King James Version although the New Revised Standard Version has corrected this...

19.2.1       7:14b, NKJV: “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”

19.2.2       7:14b, NRSV: “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the young woman shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”

19.3       The facts concerning the Virgin Birth in the Gospels according to Matthew and Luke have been presented to fit this misrepresentation of the prophecies of Isaiah. [top]

19.4       The Book of Isaiah was written in Hebrew about 700 BC. The Hebrew word “almah” rendered “virgin” in the NKJV actually means “a young woman of marriageable age” (Genesis 24:43 & Isaiah 7:14) or “Maiden” (Proverbs 30:19 and Psalms 68:25); however the nearest English equivalent is “girl”. There is no ambiguity here as Isaiah had many words at his disposal to describe this type of woman. E.g. “betula” in Hebrew means literally a Virgin having had no relations with a man (Greek: parthenos); and “na’ara” literally means a “girl”; these words are quite specific and unmistakable. However in the second century BC as Greek was the most widely spoken language in the known world, more so than even Latin, the Septuagint was written to translate the Hebrew Bible into Greek. [top]

19.5       The Greek equivalent to the Hebrew “almah” is “neanis” and refers to a “young woman”. However the writers of the Septuagint instead translated this word into the Greek: “parthenos”, which means specifically “virgin” as if the Hebrew word “betula” had been used instead! [top]

19.6       The story of the Virgin Birth is conspicuous by its absence from the earliest Gospel According to Mark; in fact, it is only mentioned in two of the four Gospels: Matthew and Luke. The Gospel according to Luke concentrates the approach to the conception of Yeshua from Mary’s perspective in Luke 1:26, while Matthew focuses on Joseph’s perspective in Matthew 1:18. The virgin birth has been doubted (or denied) by many scholars, who often regard the birth-narratives in Matthew and Luke not as historical record but as some form of imaginative literature, expressing the significance of Yeshua’s birth in symbolic, poetic, mythical or midrashic terms. The absence of explicit reference to the virgin birth elsewhere in the New Testament, especially Mark and Paul, is held to confirm that it was not part of the earliest traditions about Yeshua. [top]

20        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church’s doctrine of the immaculate conception of Mary the mother of Yeshua. This belief is completely unbiblical, and implies a divine nature of Mary in order to support the claim of the divinity of her son Yeshua and to encourage support for her worship. The doctrine of the Immaculate Conception, defended and preached by the Franciscan friars under the inspiration of the 13th-century Scottish theologian John Duns Scotus, maintains that Mary was conceived without original sin. Dominican teachers and preachers vigorously opposed the doctrine, maintaining that it detracted from Christ’s role as universal saviour. In 1854 Pope Pius IX issued a solemn decree defining, heretically, the Immaculate Conception for all Roman Catholics, but the doctrine has not been accepted by the Protestants or Orthodox churches. [top]

21        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches’ doctrine that after her death, the body of Mary, the mother of Christ, was taken into heaven and reunited with her soul. Solemnly defined as an article of faith by Pope Pius XII in 1950, the assumption was first commemorated as the Feast of the Dormition (falling asleep) of Mary in the 6th century; this feast later developed into the Feast of the Assumption (August 15). This doctrine is unsupported by any biblical evidence, nor is there any evidence that such a belief was ever held by the early Church. [top]

22        The ignorance and wickedness of the Roman Catholic church in its long campaign to marginalise and deform the character of Mary Magdalene (Mary of Magdala, aka Mariamne in the Gospel of Philip and the writings of Origen.) by wrongly identifying her with a prostitute, an adulteress, and the woman sinner of Mary Bethany. Mary Magdalene was none of these women; in fact, her role was as a devoted disciple and friend of Yeshua, the Apostle to the Apostles and an important teacher of the Gospel after Yeshua’s resurrection. The text of John 7:53-8:12 depicting the stoning of an adulteress has been accepted by theological scholars the world over as part of a much later redaction to the Gospel, thus not belonging to the original text. [top]

23        The ignorance and wickedness of the Roman Catholic church in refusing to recognise married Priests and Bishops. In fact, Yeshua’s brothers, St Peter, most of the Apostles and even St Paul at some point were married. In 1 Corinthians 9:5 St Paul says: “Don’t we have the right to take a believing wife along with us, as do the other apostles and the Lord’s brothers and Cephas? From Mark 1:30 (also Matthew 8:14 & Luke 4:38) we know of the marriage of St Peter as there is mention of his mother-in-law. In addition, early writings of the Church suggest that all the apostles, except St John, were married when chosen by Yeshua; and in Hebrew culture, it would have been unusual for a man not to be married, even a Rabbi! There is therefore no biblical reason to prevent married clergy from being consecrated to the Presbyterate or the Episcopate, and nor to prevent Presbyters and Bishops from marrying! [top]

24        The ignorance and wickedness of the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches in refusing to accept women into the diaconate of the Church. Women were accepted by the Early Church as Deaconesses with good reason, and the scriptures tell us that Mary Magdalene was not only a devoted disciple but also served a ministry as an Apostle to the Apostles (Mark 16:1-10). In addition, the writings of Origen and Epiphanus, and the non-canonical texts such as the Gospel of Philip, Pistis Sophia, and the Gospel of Mary speak of Mary Magdalene’s ministry in the Church. [top]

24.1       Epiphanius of Salamis (Against Heresies 78:13 [AD 377]) wrote: “It is true that in the Church there is an order of deaconesses, but not for being a priestess, nor for any kind of work of administration, but for the sake of the dignity of the female sex, either at the time of baptism or of examining the sick or suffering, so that the naked body of a female may not be seen by men administering sacred rites, but by the deaconess.” [top]

24.2       The Apostolic Constitutions 3:16 [AD 400] tell us: “Appoint, [O Bishop], a deaconess, faithful and holy, for the ministering of women. For sometimes, it is not possible to send a deacon into certain houses of women, because of unbelievers. Send a deaconess, because of the thoughts of the petty. A deaconess is of use to us also in many other situations. First of all, in the baptizing of women, a deacon will touch only their forehead with the holy oil, and afterwards the female deacon herself anoints them.” [top]

25        The illegitimacy of the Roman Catholic church’s claim of unbroken apostolic descent and succession from St Peter. The Roman Catholic church claims unbroken apostolic descent of the pontiff from St Peter; yet there is no evidence that St Peter ever visited Rome nor was there a formal pope until the fifth century. The first patriarch in the Roman Catholic church to take the title “Pope” was Leo I in the fifth century, and although formal ordination did not become standard practice in the early Church until the second century, the gift of the Holy Spirit was probably passed on Apostolically, if not by formal ordination then by the laying on of hands from teacher to student. The Eastern Orthodox church of Constantinople claims to have apostolic descent from St Andrew the Apostle and the Nazorean Orthodox Qahal claims apostolic descent from St James the Just who was the brother of Yeshua the Messiah, pillar of the Church and successor to the Church in Jerusalem. [top]

26        The hypocritical declaration of Apostolicae Curae, by the Roman Catholic church on the nullity of Anglican Orders, is itself null and void due to the uncertainty of the unbroken apostolic descent of Roman Catholic orders. The Anglican church can trace its apostolic descent to the Bishop of Rome, Nicholas II, on 15th April 1061; however, 92% of Roman Catholic Bishops cannot trace their Apostolic descent any further back than the Bishop of Troia, Scipione Rebiba, on 12th March 1566. [top]

27        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church’s claim for Petrine Primacy. All the Bishops of the Church are equal, as were the Apostles. The Roman Catholic church proclaims that Christians should acknowledge the Roman pontiff as the unique and singular head of the Christian world. This claim, the so-called “Petrine theory”, has been standard Roman Catholic teaching for centuries, however, neither the Bible nor history support such an assertion of papal authority. In fact, the notion of papal primacy is a deception! [top]

27.1       The “primacy of Peter” doctrine asserts that Yeshua gave Peter, and Peter’s successors, authority to function as the sole custodians of true Christian teaching relying on one key passage of scripture, in which Yeshua said: “you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church… I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven” (Matthew 16:18–19). [top]

27.2       Yet in the original Greek text, Yeshua’s statement is actually a play on words. The Greek word for “Peter” is “petros” (meaning a small stone), and the Greek word for “rock” is “ petra” (a huge rock or mountain). The Bible clearly shows that Yeshua the Messiah is the Rock (see 1 Corinthians 10:4; 1 Peter 2:4; see also Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 28:16). He was referring to himself as the “petra”, and to his apostle Peter as the “petros”. [top]

27.3       Scripture also shows that the Church was not founded on Peter alone, but was “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Yeshua the Messiah himself being the chief cornerstone” (Ephesians 2:20). Yeshua described his petros, Peter, as a foundation stone of the Church, along with the other apostles and prophets. However, Yeshua the Messiah and his teachings would remain the true foundation of the Church. This is the true meaning of Matthew 16:18–19. Attempts to twist this verse into a statement of Peter’s exclusive authority are simply not biblical. This is why the Roman claim for power based on Peter’s supposed primacy has never been accepted by the Eastern Orthodox churches, and why it was rejected by the Protestant reformers (ref: Civilization Past & Present, Wallbank, p. 133). [top]

28        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church’s claim of Papal succession as the supreme head of the Catholic Church. The biblical Apostles were equals, the false doctrine of the Papacy is a Roman concept to gain power over the other Bishops in the church; there was no Pope in Apostolic times nor throughout the early Church:

28.1       St Peter is placed first in lists of the twelve apostles (Matthew 10:1–4; Luke 6:13–16). He was often the spokesman for the group (Matthew 16:13–16), and he gave the first sermon on Pentecost (Acts 2). Peter, along with James the Just and John, was one of three pillars in the Jerusalem Church (Galatians 2:9). Peter, Paul and Barnabas made observations about doctrine at a conference in Jerusalem, but James, not Peter, chaired the conference and rendered the final decision (Acts 15). Peter was the apostle to the Jews, and Paul became the apostle to the Gentiles, but neither one is listed as above the other (Galatians 2:7). Paul even corrected Peter (Galatians 2:11–14). Peter refused homage when it was offered (Acts 10:25–26). The Bible reveals that Peter was a leader among the apostles, but he neither had nor claimed primacy over the others. [top]

28.2       Roman Catholic sources acknowledge that the term “pope” was not used in the West “until the first half of the 5th century” (Short Biographies of All the Popes, Lozzi Roma, p. 2). As scholar Hans Küng states: “Catholic theologians concede that there is no reliable evidence that Peter was ever in charge of the church in Rome as supreme head or bishop” (The Catholic Church, Küng, p. 20). Professor Küng also mentions that “there could be no question of a legal primacy, or even of a pre-eminence based on the Bible, of the Roman community or even of the Bishop of Rome in the first centuries” (ibid., p. 49). The New Testament does not link Peter with Rome, and it mentions no successor to Peter. The apostles urged Christians to look to Jerusalem and the churches in Judea, not to Rome, as their models (Galatians 1:18; 1 Thessalonians 2:14). [top]

28.3       At the Council of Nicaea in 325AD, records show that the Roman bishop, Sylvester I, did not attend and exercised no primacy when the date of Easter was set as a replacement for the biblical Passover, nor even when the trinity was adopted into the doctrines of the new Roman Catholic religion. The Council of Nicaea was called and presided over not by a Roman bishop, but by the Emperor Constantine I. As emperor, Constantine held the title of Pontifex Maximus (High Priest) in the pagan Roman religion, a title that Roman bishop Leo I would adopt a century later when arguing for the Petrine primacy over all other bishops. In 451 AD, however, the Council of Chalcedon rebuffed Leo, and decreed that the bishops of Rome and Constantinople had equal authority. By 1200 AD, Pope Innocent III was claiming to be the “Vicar of Christ,” (Latin: Vicarius Christi) and the Supreme Sovereign of the Church and the world (Halley’s Bible Handbook, p. 776). For about 600 years during the Middle Ages, Roman bishops pointed to the “Donation of Constantine” as evidence of their right to preside over all the other bishops, but the document was later proven to be a fraud (Kung, p. 50). [top]

29        The Heresy of the Roman Catholic church’s claim for Papal Infallibility (Pastor Aeternus) at the illegitimate first Vatican Council held between 1869 and 1870. The council declared as Roman Catholic doctrine that the pope has jurisdictional primacy over the entire Church and that, under specific conditions, he is endowed by God with the infallibility (freedom from error) in teaching faith and morals that God willed the Church to have. Amid hot debate, the vote at the council in favour of Papal Infallibility was 433:2 with 365 abstentions; such a result was a shameful and lame victory for apostasy. [top]

29.1       The concept of Papal infallibility exploits the last half of the final verse in Matthew 28:20 (the Great Commission): “teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Ignoring the first half of the verse in order to grant the pope a licence to make changes to ecumenical doctrine at will. This is a direct apostate heresy because the Church that Yeshua the Messiah left to us is immutable and irreformable. [top]

30        The ignorance and wickedness of the churches in refusing to acknowledge the authenticity of the tomb of St Peter (Simon Bar Jona) found in Jerusalem in 1953, on the Franciscan monastery site called, “Dominus Flevit” (where Yeshua was said to have wept over Jerusalem), on the Mount of Olives. The tomb of St Peter in the Vatican has been proven not to contain the body of St Peter and in fact is situated on the site of a pagan burial ground, and nowhere in the bible does it claim that St Peter ever visited Rome. (Ref: Peter’s Tomb Recently Discovered In Jerusalem, by F. Paul Peterson, 1960). [top]

31        The ignorance and wickedness of the churches in refusing to acknowledge, entertain or even investigate the discovery of the tomb of Yeshua and his family at Talpiot, between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, in 1980. Of the ten first century ossuraries found in the tomb, one went missing and six of them had the following names inscribed:      

·         Yeshua bar Yehoseph” “Χ” = “Ch” “Jesus son of Joseph” [Aramaic inscription with the Greek symbol Chi on the right, an abbreviation for the Greek: “Christos” meaning “Christ”].

·         Yos’e” = a nickname for “Joseph”. 

·         Maria” = a Latin version of the biblical “Miriam” (“Mary”), written in Hebrew letters.

·         Mariamene e Mara” = “Mariamne also known as Master” (believed to be St Mary Magdalene, ref: writings of Origen and the Acts of Philip for the spelling of the name) [Greek].

·         Yehuda bar Yeshua” = “Judah, son of Jesus” (ref: John 19:25-27).           

·         Matia” = “Matthew” (The name “Matthew” and its variants occur frequently on the family tree of Mary the mother of Yeshua).       

·         Also: “Yakov, bar Yehoseph” = “James son of Joseph” (believed to be St James the Just, brother of Yeshua), the ossuary and above inscription are accepted by scholars to be authentic (while the authenticity of the additional inscription “brother of Yeshua” is uncertain), and is now believed to be the missing tenth ossuary from this tomb that either was stolen or went missing in 1980. [top]

31.1       This in spite of the fact that the bible makes no claim that Yeshua’s body was resurrected, in Matthew 28:11-15 it is suggested that Yeshua’s disciples took his body during the night, with only the hint that this was a rumour, the names of the family members are supported by scripture. [top]

31.2       Statistically the probability of finding such a tomb with all the family members in it is about 2,400,000:1 in favour. Note that the population of the world at the time was only about 231,000,000, thus making it highly likely that there should only be one tomb in biblical Israel containing all of the quoted names of family members. [top]

32        The Apostasy of the Roman Catholic church’s recognition of twenty-one ecumenical councils, along with the Eastern Orthodox churches’ recognition of the first seven of these ecumenical councils and a further two Eastern Orthodox Councils, the Oriental Orthodox churches’ recognition of the first four ecumenical councils and also the Anglican and Protestant churches’ recognition of the first seven ecumenical councils: are themselves heresy and apostasy because the true Church created by Yeshua the Messiah is immutable and irreformable. [top]

33        Scripture and history both show that the early Church did not recognize the Roman theories of the Petrine primacy and the trinity. Rather, ambitious Roman bishops developed these false doctrines to gain wealth and power over other bishops and their churches, and to appease the pagan Romans. Yeshua the Messiah warned that at the end of the age, many would be deceived by false teachers claiming to represent him (Matthew 24:3–5). St Paul warned that in the latter times hypocritical teachers would spread lies (1 Timothy 4:1–3) and would delude people into believing apostasies and unbiblical traditions (2 Thessalonians 2:1–15). These long-standing warnings are as valid today as they were 1,700 years ago. [top]

 

In 1517 Rev Dr Martin Luther warned the Roman Catholic church and in turn all the churches of some of the heresies being practiced, and now 490 years later heresies, apostasies and blasphemies are knowingly still being committed along with new ones, without shame or apology. There is no excuse for turning away from our Lord’s teachings (Jeremiah 31:33), and those clergy, who promote such blasphemies and heresies, do so at the demise of their own souls and those of their followers (Ezekiel 3:17-21, 33:7-11, 1 Peter 5:8-11).

Chi-Rho       Michael John  (Ebor).      Primus Inter Pares

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© 2007 Rev Dr M J Mackenzie-Hanson, BA (Hons), DD, acOSB.