History of the Lords Church Images.001



Download the Notes:




History of the Lord’s Church

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • June 24, In the year of our Lord, 2018


  1. We read of one church in the New Testament.
    1. What has happened since then?
    2. From Adam and Eve to the present man has departed from the Lord’s way.


  1. Man’s Perpetual Problem of Going Astray
    1. Adam and Eve
    2. Cain’s sacrifice
    3. Generations leading up to Noah
    4. Noah’s descendants at the Tower of Babel
    5. Nadab and Abihu
    6. Israel in the wilderness
    7. Israel in the Land of Canaan
    8. First century Israel capped it off with the killing of Jesus
    9. Ananias and Sapphira
    10. The churches of Galatia:

      8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed (Galatians 1.8–9).
  2. Deviations from the Church
    1. The Lord revealed His will for the church.
    2. Eventually people strayed from that pattern.
      1. The seed is the word.
      2. Jesus warned of false prophets and teachers

        15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves” (Matthew 7.15).
    3. While the church did well at first, the Spirit gave warnings:

      1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons… (1 Timothy 4.1).

      3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables (2 Timothy 4.3–4).

      1. The drift began in the governing of the church.
      2. Remember Jesus is the only head both in heaven and on earth:

        18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth” (Matthew 28.18).
    4. [Charts]
      1. Organized as it should be
      2. Prominent man (bishop) in each congregation
      3. Those bishops gathered for meetings
        1. Initially needed to discuss problems, etc.
        2. Later started making laws, teachings, etc.
      4. Those regions sent representatives to a greater meeting
    5. During this time the Roman government persecuted Christians
      1. Romans noted the peace of Christians even under persecution
      2. Constantine saw this as useful for the empire
        1. He issued the Edict of Milan in AD 313 to end persecution
        2. The church was tolerated as another religion
          1. When Rome fell,
          2. people turned to the church because of how well it was run
    6. [Chart: Soon the church patterned itself after the Roman government]
      1. AD 606 Boniface III became universal bishop
      2. AD 1054 church divided:
        1. Roman Church
        2. Greek Orthodox Church
    7. More and more changes kept being introduced
      1. Sale of Indulgences (led to building of St. Peter’s Basilica)
      2. Separate priesthood
      3. Holy water
      4. Mass
      5. Transubstantiation
      6. Sprinkling
      7. Etc.
  3. A Desire to Return to the Scriptures
    1. Many people craved the word of God
      1. Bibles had only been in Latin and
      2. reserved just for the clergy
    2. For about 3 centuries men started turning to the Scriptures
      1. This set the stage for The Reformation
      2. This was all dangerous
    3. Finally in 1521, Martin Luther brought up 95 objections to church teaching
      1. He sought to reform the current church
      2. He did not want to begin a new church
        1. Still his followers called themselves Lutherans
        2. Luther objected
    4. John Calvin started in France, but
      1. left because of persecution from the Roman Church.
      2. He went to Switzerland
        1. The Reformed Church began
        2. In Scotland it became the Presbyterian Church
    5. These two men, and others, blessed the world with their return to Scripture
      1. However, people built denominations based on these men
      2. And so many churches have begun in like manner
    6. Today it is popular to drop “church” and take on a name
      1. that does not mention church
      2. that does not mention Christ
  4. The Church
    1. Remember Jesus built His church just as He wanted it
      1. He had His writers reveal just what He wanted
      2. Take those writings and mix with manmade doctrines and
        1. that leads to new churches
    2. Many people have left denominations in a goal
      1. just to be what the people in the New Testament were
      2. Many churches and denominations have a great reverence for the Bible
    3. John 17.1, 20–21

      1 Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You…

      20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me” (John 17.1, 20–21).


  1. First Point