This Revelation Timeline Decoded study is about the Orthodox Church, to see if it is part of Messiah’s true church or not?
I understand that people want to be connected to the original church that Messiah started. I see this in the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church, which both claim that heritage.
Protestant churches have different beliefs and ways of conducting a service, especially now as some have become very liberal, so the structure of the Orthodox Church is preferred by some.
Protestant churches seem very divided, so the unity of the Orthodox Church seems attractive, so I understand the appeal.
This explanation about the Orthodox Church is in no way a defense of Protestant churches. Rather, it’s focus is primarily on the teachings of the Orthodox Church to see if they align with Scripture.
I’m still learning about the doctrine of the Orthodox Church, so this isn’t a complete or perfect work. If you have more insight, please share in the comment section below.
The Orthodox Church proclaims apostolic succession, about which there is much debate.
But even if there is a continuous succession from the apostles of Messiah, would you agree that what matters is that what they teach today lines up with Scripture?
Let’s start this discussion by pointing out that Revelation 11:1-2 gives us the command to use the ruler of Scripture to measure the teachings of a church, to see if they are a part of Messiah’s true Ekklesia, His true Church. If not, then they’re part out the outer court, which looks like it’s part of the true Church, but is not.
And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles.
The primary application was fulfilled by people like Martin Luther who compared what the Roman Catholic Church teaches against Scripture and found out that the papal church is an apostate church who teaches many manmade concepts which are contrary to Scripture and antichrist.
The Roman Catholic Church proclaims to be Messiah’s Church, but it teaches a false Gospel of works through the sacraments and that Mary is the intercessor to the Father, which denies Messiah.
The Roman Catholic Church looks like it’s part of the temple of Messiah, part of His Ekklesia, but its teachings show that it’s delegated to the outer court of the Gentiles.
Is the same thing true about the Orthodox Church?
The Roman Catholic Church looks like the wheat of Messiah’s Ekklesia, but it is the tares church of the enemy.
Is the same thing true about the Orthodox Church?
Let’s look at concepts that the Orthodox Church teaches and compare them to Scripture and history.
In Colossians 2:4-10, the Apostle Paul admonishes us about the traditions of men.
And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ. As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.
Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.
Like the harlot Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church is not Sola Scriptura (Scripture only), meaning they believe that their ‘traditions‘ are also valid.
They proclaim that their traditions do not go against Scripture, but that simply is not the case.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 says that the man of God becomes perfect by the study of Scripture.
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
The Orthodox Church teaches that Mary was taken up to heaven.
The Dormition of the Mother of God celebrates the “falling asleep” (death) of Mary the Theotokos and her being taken up into heaven.
There is no Bible verse or historical record that states that Mary was taken up to heaven.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 declares that the dead, including Mary, are in a state of sleep and will rise when Messiah returns.
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Only Messiah ascended up to heaven, so proclaiming that Mary did so too is an apostate doctrine.
The Orthodox Church pray to Mary for her intercession to the Father.
The Saint John the Evangelist Orthodox Church declares:
The Orthodox venerate Mary as a role model to both men and women seeking to live godly lives. She holds an incredibly high position of importance in the Church. To illustrate how special she is, we sing to her and ask for her intercessions during almost every service. To be clear: we do not worship Mary, but instead venerate her and seek her intercessions before God.
There are no Scriptures which declare that Mary is in heaven, that she hears people’s prayers or that she is able to intercede to the Heavenly Father.
In John 14:13, Messiah said to pray to the Father in His name,
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
1 Timothy 2:5-6 declares that there is only one intercessor to the Heavenly Father, Messiah.
For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all. 1 Timothy 2:5-6
Singing and praying to Mary and asking for her intercession are manmade traditions which steal glory away from our redeemer, Messiah.
Not once does the New Testament Scriptures say to pray to Mary.
The Orthodox worships / reveres Mary above what Messiah and Scripture proclaimed.
Orthodox Christians proclaim that they don’t worship Mary, but the word worship in Revelation is Strong’s Greek Dictionary 4352 proskuneo means to fawn or crouch to, i.e. (literally or figuratively) prostrate oneself in homage (do reverence to, adore).
Orthodox Christians prostrate themselves before icons of Mary. They adore her, kneel before her and make reverential prayers to her, thus they worship her.
Mary’s response to being told that she would birth the Christ, was that she is a slave.
And Mary said, Behold the handmaid (meaning a female slave in the Greek) of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her. Luke 1:38
Mary considered herself of low estate.
For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Luke 1:48
Messiah didn’t elevate Mary when He had the perfect opportunity to do so, when women proclaimed:
Blessed is the womb that bore You and the breasts at which You nursed. But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it. Luke 11:27-28
Messiah could have taken this opportunity to put the focus on Mary, but He did not.
The Holy Scriptures don’t focus on Mary, so we shouldn’t either.
She was blessed to have been selected to bear the promised Messiah, but it doesn’t elevate her as an intercessor. The Bible doesn’t tell us about her life, her later years, about her death or burial. And it doesn’t say to pray to her.
But the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodox Church are obsessed with Mary, the proclaimed Queen of Heaven. Interestingly, in the book of Jeremiah, burning incense and pouring out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven was condemned.
The focus of the New Testament is on Messiah, not Mary.
Mary is mentioned in the Gospels and once in the book of Acts 4:14
These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
The focus in the New Testament is Messiah, but the Orthodox Church is obsessed with Mary.
It is Messiah who is praised in the epistles and Revelation, not Mary.
Revelation 5:5 points to Messiah, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, who is worthy to open the seal judgments.
Revelation 5:9-10 points to the saints praying and praising Messiah
And they sing a new song, saying, `Worthy art thou to take the scroll, and to open the seals of it, because thou wast slain, and didst redeem us to God in thy blood, out of every tribe, and tongue, and people, and nation, and didst make us to our God kings and priests, and we shall reign upon the earth.’
Revelation 5:12-13 proclaims,
Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
The Orthodox Church teaches that the ‘Blessed Virgin Mary’ lived a sinless life and that honor is due to her as Theotokos, the Mother of God.
Though they don’t teach that Mary was born immaculately without a sin nature, like the Roman Catholic Church does, they teach that Mary did not sin.
There is no Bible verse that states that Mary was without sin and it’s contrary to what the Bible says in Romans 3:23,
For all men have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
All men points to the human race including Mary.
In Luke 1:46-47, Mary acknowledged her need for a Saviour.
And Mary said, `My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit was glad on God my Saviour.
To teach that Mary did not sin is heresy, for only one was without sin, Messiah.
2 Corinthians 5:21, Hebrews 4:15, 1 Peter 1:18-19, 1 Peter 2:22 and Hebrews 9:14 point to Messiah being the only sinless one.
The Orthodox Church teaches that Mary was a perpetual virgin.
The Orthodox Church says in regard to Mark 6:3, when Jesus is called the ‘son of Mary,’ it would be reasonable based on the culture of the time, to imply that the other siblings were the sons and daughters of Joseph and not Mary.
Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.
Reasonable based on the culture of the time? That’s a misleading stretch, for nowhere in Scripture does it say that Joseph was previously married and had children. The Jews were directly relating them as Mary’s children, because if they were from Joseph only, their point had no merit.
The narrative of Joseph knowing her not until she birthed Messiah, declares that Joseph and Mary came together sexually after His birth.
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Matthew 1:18
Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS. Matthew 1:24-25
Mark 3:31-32 validate that they are his brothers.
There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him. And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee.
Galatians 1:18-19 confirms that James was Messiah’s brother.
Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother.
By this we see that the teaching that Mary was a perpetual virgin is contrary to Scripture.
The Orthodox Church pray to dead saints for them to intercede to the Father.
The Saint John the Evangelist Orthodox Church declares:
In Orthodox Tradition, we ask for the intercessory prayers of the Saints, including the Theotokos. These holy men and women intercede for us before the throne of God. While we do make requests of them in prayer, we do not worship them. As our fellow human beings, Saints serve as excellent examples for us. They show us how to live a life focused on Christ and how, with the Lord’s help, we, too, can attain salvation as they have.
When an Orthodox Christian “prays to” a Saint, what they are really doing is asking that Saint to pray for us, to intercede before God for forgiveness of our sins and for our salvation. This is what the Church calls intercessory prayer. Source
There are no Scriptures which declare that the saints are in heaven, that they can hear our prayers or that they can intercede for people.
Ecclesiastes 9:5 says,
For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward.
There are Scriptures which declare that the dead will rise when Messiah returns for His saints.
Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. John 5:28-29
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 1 Corinthians 15:52
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-16
Scripture declares that the saints who have gone before us are dead in the grave until Messiah returns; so they can’t hear prayers or intercede for us.
Praying to saints and asking for their intercession are manmade traditions which steal glory away from our redeemer, Messiah.
We are told to pray to the Heavenly Father in the name of Messiah.
Witnessing Orthodox Christians bowing before icons, kneeling before them, looks like worship. Making prayers to icons of dead saints is idolatry or very close to it, as they are idolizing the icons.
The Orthodox Church teaches that salvation is through works.
For the Orthodox, salvation means achieving theosis, or becoming like God. By God’s Grace we can become what Jesus Christ is by nature. Salvation is, therefore, more than a one-time acceptance of Christ (once saved, always saved). And it is far more complex than just making it to heaven and avoiding hell. It is a process that encompasses not only the earthly life, but also the eternal life of the age to come. Source
Scripture is very clear that salvation is by faith alone apart from works:
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:1-2
For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. Romans 5:6-11
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men. But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain. Titus 3:4-9
The challenge with basing your theology on the writings of people called ‘early church fathers’ is that after the first century, some moved away from salvation by faith and began teaching that moral living is the means of salvation.
Cyril Richardson in his book Early Church Fathers noted, “Clement has moved away from the Pauline gospel into an atmosphere more concerned with the moral life. . . . Clement’s Letter reflects the movement away from the Pauline faith (of being saved by faith) to a type of Christianity in which ethical interests and concern for law and order predominate.”
They believe that ‘grace‘ comes through participating in their sacraments. They believe that salvation is a process of transformation, a synergy between God and man, faith and works.
Our works for the kingdom may earn us rewards when we stand before our King, but we are saved by faith in His atoning work alone.
The Orthodox Church teaches deification, becoming like a god.
They believe that the salvation process makes them as God. This means that we’re not saved until our soul is godlike.
Nowhere does Scripture proclaim that we become as god. We are told to obey the Father’s commandments out of love for Him saving us. The work was done by Messiah, not us.
Romans 11:5-6 says, Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.
The Orthodox Church teaches confession in the presence of a priest.
The Bible says that we should go to Messiah our High Priest to confess our sins for forgiveness, not a priest.
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. 1 Timothy 2:5-6
Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. Hebrews 2:17
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. Hebrews 4:14
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 1 John 2:1
Nowhere does Scripture declare that we should confess our sins to a priest.
The Orthodox Church teaches the use of icons in worship.
The Father’s condemnation of idols is primarily about people’s reverence to them, as they steal worship away from Him.
You shall not make idols for yourselves; neither a carved image nor a sacred pillar shall you rear up for yourselves; nor shall you set up an engraved stone in your land, to bow down to it; for I am the LORD your God. Leviticus 26:1
Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God. Exodus 20:4,5
Icons cause people to revere Mary and the saints, which steals glory away from the Father and Messiah.
Catholics and Orthodox light candles, bow and kneel before icons of Mary and the saints, and pray to the them for intercession.
But Messiah told us to pray to the Heavenly Father in His name.
The Orthodox Church teaches the solemn celebration of the Eucharist and affirmation of its sacrificial nature as identical with the sacrifice of Christ.
They teach the doctrine of trans-elementation or metousiosis, which holds that the bread and wine are transformed in a mysterious way into the actual body and blood of Christ, while retaining their outward form.
So they are symbolically representing Messiah being sacrificed, just like the harlot Roman Catholic Church does, which denies Messiah’s one-time sacrifice.
The Scriptures declare, For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself. For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore. Hebrews 7:26-28
By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Hebrews 10:10
But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; Hebrews 10:12
At the last supper before Passover, Messiah told us to use wine and bread to remember His atoning sacrifice for sin. Scripture does not declare that the bread and wine become the body and blood of Messiah.
The Orthodox Church teaches that observing the Eucharist provides forgiveness of sins.
“The Eucharist, approached in the correct manner, takes away our sin and gives us the strength to draw closer to God.”
“The Eucharist forgives sins as it indwells us with the Body and Blood of the sinless one, which gives us life.”
The Bible tells us that forgiveness is found by repentance and prayer to the Heavenly Father.
Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord. Acts 3:19
To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace. Ephesians 1:6-7
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:7-9
The Orthodox Church promotes holidays to remember Mary.
Saint Mary is regarded as the highest saint in the Orthodox Church. She is higher than all the heavenly saints and any man or woman saint who ever lived.
That’s contrary to Messiah, who said that John the Baptist is the greatest.
Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist. Matthew 11:11
Here’s the manmade holidays of the Orthodox Church which worships Mary:
On March 25th, the Annunciation, also known as the Feast of the Annunciation of Our Most Holy Lady, takes place every year on March 25th. This feast celebrates the day the Virgin was told by Archangel Gabriel that Jesus Christ would enter the world through her womb.
On August 15, the Feast of the Dormition of Our Most Holy Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary is celebrated on August 15 each year. The Feast commemorates the repose (dormition and in the Greek kimisis) or “falling-asleep” of the Mother of Jesus Christ, our Lord. The Feast also commemorates the translation or assumption into heaven of the body of the Theotokos. The fast of Saint Mary is from August 7 – August 21. The feast of the assumption of Saint Mary is August 22.
On September 8, the Feast of the Nativity of Our Most Holy Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary is celebrated on September 8 each year. The Feast commemorates the birth of the Mother of Jesus Christ, our Lord.
On November 21, the Feast of the Entrance into the Temple of Our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary is celebrated on November 21 each year. The Feast commemorates when as a young child, the Virgin Mary entered the Temple in Jerusalem.
None of these manmade holidays are declared in Scripture.
And the Orthodox Church neglects to observe all of the Father’s seven Holy Feast Days, which Messiah is fulfilling to redeem the set-apart saints.
How is the declared true church of Messiah not observing the Scriptural calendar, which starts in Spring?
Instead, their holidays are fixed on the Roman calendar.
The Orthodox Church proclaim to be the apostolic church of Messiah, but they don’t understand the fulfillment of Bible prophecy.
Some people in the Orthodox Church are proclaiming that it believes in the historicist prophecy fulfillment explanations, but I’ve not seen any evidence of their teachers doing that.
I have seen Orthodox teachings that assign the warnings of Messiah’s Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24 to the end times, which is the futuristic narrative.
I have seen Orthodox teachings about Revelation which do not give a historical narrative, but rather were generic in nature.
How is the declared church of Messiah not witnessing that the office of the papacy, the popes of Rome, fulfill Bible prophecy as the ‘little horn’ of Daniel 7, the ‘son of perdition’ of 2 Thessalonians 2, and ‘the antichrist beast’ of Revelation 13, who leads the ‘harlot’ church of Rome?
Where is the witness of the supposed true church of Messiah against the popes of Rome, who fulfill prophecy as the enemy of Messiah and His saints?
What’s interesting is that during the fulfillment of the sixth trumpet judgment, when the Turks were released to attack the Eastern Roman Empire, the Orthodox Christians were praying in vain for Mary to save them.
They esteemed Mary as the Queen of Heaven and prayed to icons and dead saints, which is why judgment was coming upon them. But they have not repented of their false beliefs.
How is the declared church of Messiah not understanding that most of the prophecies in Revelation have been fulfilled during the last 1,900 years and that we’re in the sixth vial judgment on the verge of the seventh vial being fulfilled?
Shouldn’t the true church of Messiah know these things and shouldn’t they be proclaiming them to the world?
The Orthodox Church teaches church infallibility.
Messiah never spoke of an infallible church. He declared that the gates of hell would not prevail against it though it falters from error, corruption, heresy and apostasy.
What infallible is the Word, not manmade traditions.
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
The Roman Catholic Church and Orthodox Church both declare that their church traditions and rituals are as valid as the Bible. But we see in this study that some of their teachings are contrary to Scripture, so they are not infallible.
The Orthodox Church has priests who wear overly ornate robes and headwear.
Messiah warned about these things.
Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts. Luke 20:46
It’s hard to comprehend that Messiah would condone the wardrobes of Orthodox priests.
The Orthodox Church has spend large sums of money to build their overly ornate churches.
Google ‘Orthodox Church images’ and you see how much money has been spend to built these structures.
Is this what Messiah would have His followers do? Or should the money have gone to help widows and orphans, to feed the poor and house the homeless?
The Orthodox Church uses the graven image of the crucifix.
666 in Revelation 13:18 points to the Vicar of Christ, the antichrist beast popes of Rome.
But the underlying Greek for 666 is Chi Xi Stigma, which describes the wicked crucifix graven image of the popes of Rome.
The Orthodox Christian Church should have nothing to do with this graven image!
The Orthodox Church upholds the decisions of the first seven Ecumenical Councils.
The Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches accept all seven of these councils as legitimate ecumenical councils. source
- First Ecumenical Council (Nicaea, 325)
- Second Ecumenical Council (Constantinople, 381)
- Third Ecumenical Council (Ephesus, 431)
- Fourth Ecumenical Council (Chalcedon, 451)
- Fifth Ecumenical Council (Constantinople, 553)
- Sixth Ecumenical Council (Constantinople, 680)
- Seventh Ecumenical Council (Nicaea, 787)
These were councils held by the Roman Emperors and priests, who codified the false religion of Romanism which has perverted the Scriptural Gospel with manmade doctrine. Constantinople was a Roman province when these councils were held.
These councils are the fulfillment of the Apostle Paul’s warning about the falling away taking place before the son of perdition popes of Rome took power.
These councils codified some Scriptural truth, but they also brought in manmade doctrine.
These councils replaced the Father’s seven Holy Feast Days, which Messiah is fulfilling to redeem the set-apart saints, with manmade holidays of Easter (which is based on the fertility goddess Ishtar, thus the rabbits and eggs) and Christ-mass.
Messiah died on Passover, was in the grave on the Feast of Unleavened Bread, rose again on the Feast of First Fruits and sent the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. He will return on the Feast of Trumpets, make judgment on the Day of Atonement and marry His bride on the Feast of Tabernacles.
Is that not the Scriptural Gospel? Why is the supposed ‘true church of Messiah‘ not teaching that the seven Holy Feast Days are divine appointments that Messiah is fulfilling to redeem His set-apart saints? Because they’ve been misled by manmade traditions.
After ten persecution periods by the Roman Emperors, Satan realized that the more that Messiah’s Ekklesia, His Church was persecuted, the faster it grew.
So he used Constantine to stop the persecutions in 312 AD, to seek to conquer Messiah’s Church from within by creating a false Christian religion.
It has the veneer of the Scriptural faith, but is full of manmade doctrine. It’s the tares church of the enemy, which seeks to choke out the truth of the wheat church.
These councils caused many of Messiah’s saints to apostatize, to fall away from the Scriptural faith. And they continue to deceive people until this very day.
The Eastern Orthodox proclaiming that all seven of these are legitimate ecumenical councils, means that they follow the teachings of the harlot Roman Catholic Church.
Like the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church believes that the Bible is not the final authority. They believe that the church and its holy tradition are also authoritative.
But the canon of Scripture was written in the first century, the Word of God was complete then.
The Orthodox Church proclaims that no man has a right to interpret Scripture, yet they hold to quotes from men called the ‘early church fathers‘ and manmade traditions at Roman councils.
The split in 1054 AD was not about one church holding to Scripture and the other to manmade doctrine. Rather, it was about two competing sets of manmade doctrine, both of which pervert Scripture.
Read Come Out Of Babylon!
Speaking of the falling away before the man of sin, the son of perdition appears; why is the supposed ‘true church of Messiah‘ not teaching that the popes of Rome fulfill this prophecy?
The popes appear to sit in the temple, as they proclaim to lead Messiah’s Church. The popes have already proclaimed to be God, to forgive sins and provide salvation, which is blasphemy.
The popes of Rome cause Catholics to break the Father’s commandments, thus their title, the man of sin. They cause them to call the pope the Holy Father, which takes the Father’s name in vain. They cause them to make and bow to graven images. They caused them to murder those who believed that the Bible is their authority during the Dark Ages.
Part of the falling away that took place during the ecumenical councils was that the Scriptural calendar was pushed aside and the Roman calendar promoted.
In Messiah’s letter to the church age of Pergamos, which took place from 313-538 AD, he points to His hatred of leadership systems which seek positions of power and to dominate the laity.
In the name Nicolaitans, we see that it describes the deeds and teaching of those who conquer, dominate, manipulate, and lead the laity, or the people.
The Greek word ‘nike‘ means to conquer, to dominate, overcome, manipulate.
The word ‘laos‘ means ‘the people’, that is, the laity.
We see that in the first century, Messiah said praised the church era of Ephesus for fighting against the type of system in which a clergy class rules over the laity.
But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. Revelation 2:6
But then to the church age of Pergamos, Messiah condemned them joining with this type of system during the ecumenical Roman councils.
So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. Revelation 2:15
We see Messiah’s condemnation of leadership systems in Matthew 15 and Matthew 23, as he faced the same type of structure in the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Sanhedrin, the religious hierarchy. He condemned their titles, position and religious garments.
But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? Matthew 15:3
But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. Matthew 15:9
We see that played out in the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church, as the leaders have titles of prestige, religious garments and manmade traditions that mislead and bind the people.
Some people proclaim that the Orthodox Church is the earliest and original apostolic church of Messiah.
How would this be true, when history shows that the Orthodox Church came out of the harlot Roman Catholic Church of the antichrist beast popes?
At one time, liturgical worship in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches looked almost identical. They created these manmade concepts:
- 310 AD – Prayers for the dead.
- 375 AD – The veneration of angels and dead saints
- 431 AD – The veneration of Mary as the Mother of God.
- 600 AD- Prayers directed to Mary and the dad.
- 788 AD – The veneration of the cross, images, relics
- 850 AD – Holy water
- 995 AD – The canonization of dead saints.
- 998 AD – Fasting on Fridays and The observance of Lent.
During the East–West Schism, also known as the Great Schism or Schism of 1054 AD, the Greek Eastern Orthodox Church split away from the Latin Roman Catholic Church.
Revelation 17:5 points to the harlot church of Rome.
And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
Since the Orthodox Church came out of the Mother Roman Catholic Church, she is a daughter of the harlot, not the earliest and original apostolic church of Messiah.
I’ve heard some Orthodox Christians declare that the Roman Catholic Church separated from the Orthodox Church, but history shows that’s not true.
Messiah desires His followers to come out of manmade teachings and to follow the ancient path of Scriptural truth.
The Heavenly Father and His beloved Son should be our focus, not Mary.
The Orthodox Church insists that it’s the one true church of Messiah on earth.
The harlot Roman Catholic Church of the antichrist beast popes also makes this claim and they both look at other churches, especially Protestant ones, as heretical.
They believe that salvation lies within the Orthodox Church alone, which implies that one can’t be saved outside of their church.
They’re gracious in not proclaiming that directly, but when you listen to their explanations, you see that’s what they believe.
This study shows that the Orthodox Church is not infallible and that it teaches concepts which are contrary to Scripture, which invalidates that it’s claim of being the one true church of Messiah.
When a church proclaims that it’s the one-true church of Messiah but it’s teachings are heretical, that’s the sign of a cult.
I’m not saying that all Orthodox Christians are not saved. What I’m showing is that the Orthodox Church teaches a false gospel message and many manmade traditions which are contrary to Scripture.
I pray that this opens your eyes to see the truth, so that you are in right standing before the Heavenly Father.
Resource for additional study:
If you know more ways that the Orthodox Church does things that are contrary to Scripture, please share them in the comment section.