Ignatius and Polycarp

I have said many times that the early church fathers harbored bad doctrine. I stand in doubt of them. They come close to having sound theology but they are likely very dangerous men who perverted the truth.

Polycarp's Letter to the Philippians and Ignatius of Antioch's Letters are problematic. Polycarp's letter has some sound doctrine, and is anti gnostic (gnostics denied Christ came in the flesh).  But he gives the green light to Ignatius who has terrible doctrine. 

If Ignatius's writings were not written by him, then perhaps we could accept him. If they do belong to Ignatius, as shown below, his doctrine was awful and we must flee his theology.

The early church fathers elevated the bishop to the place of God's representative, especially the Bishop of Rome. This is not what was intended in the early church. The Apostles were the government of Christ to be sure. But they never attempted to take the place of Christ as to His person. 

Now, if for some reason the writings of the early church fathers prove to be not their writings, then maybe some were saved. But from we appear to see, these church fathers did build the bishop system and it was clearly non biblical from the start. The general second century doctrine of those considered fathers was not like the truth coming from the first century church.

We can define Catholicism and the fatal errors of that religion as centered in their church organization and in their rejection of the superior law of Christ. There are many other similar doctrines they share with the Protestants that are wicked.

But church organization is often the result of fusion of church and state. It was not so clearly defined in the second century. But the church organization was set up in error, resulting in the error of future sacralism in the rise of the Papacy in government.

Ignatius was credited with this horrible doctrine.

Ignatius said:

1. Take care to do all things in harmony with God, with the bishop presiding in the place of God, and with the presbyters in the place of the council of the apostles, and with the deacons, who are most dear to me, entrusted with the business of Jesus Christ, who was with the Father from the beginning and is at last made manifest.
— Letter to the Magnesians 2, 6:1

The Catholics today say that the Pope sits in Peter's place. That is wrong by itself.  But it is taught by Catholicism to hide an even worse doctrine! The Papacy really claims to be God's representative on earth. Ignatious is clearly teaching that wicked doctrine.  I assure you the Pope is not Christ on earth.

 The terrible doctrine continues. Ignatius said:

2. Wherever the bishop appears, there let the people be; as wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church. It is not lawful to baptize or give communion without the consent of the bishop. On the other hand, whatever has his approval is pleasing to God. Thus, whatever is done will be safe and valid.
— Letter to the Smyrnaeans 8, J.R. Willis translation.

God could care less who baptizes you if you are a believer in Christ. I know this truth personally. So Ignatius blew it again.

And again, this man misinterprets the truth. When Christ said, Eat my flesh and drink my blood, He was using the physical to teach the spiritual, showing the spiritual joy in Christ the Savior.

So, Ignatius blows it again, teaching Christ's flesh is in the Eucharist. Yet Christ had already risen from the dead and sacrificed His blood and presented the sacrifice to the Father. The Eucharist is not flesh. Christ suffered once. (1 Pet. 3:18). He does not continue to suffer through transubstantiation. Ignatius wickedly said, which many rightly rejected:

3. Take note of those who hold heterodox opinions on the grace of Jesus Christ which has come to us, and see how contrary their opinions are to the mind of God. ...They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer because they do not confess that the Eucharist is the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, flesh which suffered for our sins and which that Father, in his goodness, raised up again. They who deny the gift of God are perishing in their disputes.
— Letter to the Smyrnaeans 6:2–7:1

See also:

The falling away of the Gentiles that we see with Ignatius was not permanent:


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