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Ambassador College Thesis
A Handbook of Church History
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A Handbook of Church History
Dean C Blackwell   
Church of God

Died: April 14, 2003
Member Since: 1952
Ambassador College: 1956
Office: ACE - Evangelist

Appendix 4:

Summary Outline of the History of the True Church

Acts 8, 33 A.D. False Church founded 33 A.D. Simon Magus.
Acts 11:25 Paul in Antioch where first called Christians
Acts 24:5 Paul — ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes
64 A.D. Paul murdered (about).
69 A.D. Jerusalem destroyed.
Nazarenes Nazarenes in Pella (fifty miles northeast of Jerusalem) from time of flight (69 A.D.) of Jewish Christians from Jerusalem, where they stayed for approximately sixty years.

The True Church never went back to Jerusalem.

Ebionites Ebionites were never the True Church and were not the same as the Nazarenes.

Apostolic and Nazarene Churches were True Church all through their stage.

Acts 17 True Church now in Berea (at close of fourth century).
Rev. 2:1 Ephesus — on western coast of Asia Minor, was apostolic church. V. 4 — lost first love, evangelizing spirit.
Rev. 2:8 Smyrna — after fourth century, false church became powerful. "You shall have tribulation 10 days, be faithful."

325 A.D. — began tribulation of 1260 years. Fled into valleys and mountains of Europe and Asia Minor.

Nazarenes lasted until latter part of fifth century, at which time they were in Asia Minor.

Paulicians — evangelical Christian church — spread over from fifth century onward.

Rev. 2:12 Pergamos — capital of eastern Roman Empire, where Satan was. Had idolatry and doctrine of Balaam among them. V. 16 — "Repent or I will fight against you." God did intervene and separate the church in the midst of their era. This stage of the church was divided into two parts the Paulicians and the Bogomiles.

Constantine of Mananali — 650 A.D.

Constantine of Mananali raised up by God about 650 A.D. — based his teachings on doctrines of Paul and considered by Paulicians as their real founder. Constantine was murdered in seven years. The Paulicians suffered great persecution from close of seventh to middle of ninth centuries. About 750-860 A.D. Paulicians ceased to be the true church.

The "Key of Truth," written by Paulicians about 800 A.D., was not discovered until 1828. Paulicians fellowshipped with Catholics to avoid persecution by universal church.


800 A.D.

The next stage of the Pergamos Church went up into Bulgaria about 800 A.D. called Bogomiles. Their main persecution was by Greek Orthodox Church.

Bogomiles became prominent in twelfth century, but were no longer the true church. In middle of eighth century the Emperor Constantine Copronymus settled a number of Armenian Paulicians in Thracia. Were noted heretics persecuted by Greek Church.

More than 100,000 killed by Empress Theodora. In tenth century Emperor John Zinnsces of Armenian origin, transplanted over 200,000 additional to Europe near Philippopolis (European Turkey) along Balkans. Thrace first, Macedonia second, Bulgaria next.

By the time they became well known they were no longer the true church. Basil, their leader, killed in 1118. Bogomiles moved, following mountain chains of Central Europe, and were in South France in twelfth century and known as the Albigenses-Pasagianes.



Patarine — another name for Paulicians, went from Bulgaria to Italy in eleventh century. Were also called Albigenses in northern Italy.


Patarines, Cathars, Waldenses, Anabaptists have all, at times, been closely allied with the Bogomiles. Cathars never were true church.
Rev. 2:18-23 This church age was also divided into two parts. Last works of this church stage greater than the first stage. "You have that prophetess Jezebel."

Permitted false church to preach and seduce God's people.

That particular church stage is when children of this mother were born — the age of the reformation — through adultery with Jezebel.

Peter de Bruy

Arnold of Brescia
Henry of Lausanne

The first stage of the Thyatire era of the true church was supervised by three separate leaders. First, Peter de Bruy, then Arnold of Brescia and third, Henry of Lausanne. They are known by different names in some books.

Peter first took the truth from the Bogomiles, he was put to death about 1126, then Arnold took over and was killed, then followed by Henry.

Petrobrusians Petrobrusians — Followers of Pierre de Bruy who, in twelfth century founded a sect of religious extremists in southern France.
Arnoldists Arnoldists — Arnold of Brescia (a city in Lombard) a monk, excommunicated by Innocent II and banished from Italy, went to France, later returned to Rome where his influence became so strong that the Pope had to leave and go into France. In 1155 Arnold was arrested and burned, and his ashes thrown in the Tiber.
Henricians Henricians, Henry of Lausanne, born in Switzerland, a monk and hermit, first half of the twelfth century. Sentenced to imprisonment by Innocent II, died about 1149.

Second stage of Thyatira

Waldenses — second stage of work of Thyatira. Peter Waldo, a wealthy merchant of merchant of Lyons, France in twelfth century. Gave property to wife and daughters and to the poor and began to preach. Had two ecclesiastics translate portions of the Bible and writings of the Fathers. Ostracised, then journeyed into Piedmont 1184-1190, southern France and northern Italy. The greatest number of persecutions of Waldenses came after they were no longer the true church. In middle of fourteenth century congregations went to Calabria, others to Bulgaria (Bohemian Brethren), became amalgamated with Hussites, were no longer the true church.


Bohemian Brethren arose about fifteenth century, they held doctrines of, but were not Bogomiles. In 1497 the Waldenses came into communication with Bohemian Brethren and they received much light from them.
1552 A.D. In 1552 Waldenses adopted Protestant principles and united with reformation movement and ceased being the true church.
Rev. 2:25 "Hold fast that which you have." Waldenses is the only church of the middle ages that has remained until today and will remain until Christ's return. The literature of the Waldenses must be divided into three parts:
1) The Catholic period when they were just beginning to understand and dogmas and practices of the church were accepted.

Jezebel in Revelation. Pope was never attacked in this period.

2) The Hussite period in which the Pope and Sacraments are attacked.

3) The Calvinistic period which has been marked by wholesale falsification of documents, by forgery and a Christian body which has descended from apostolic times AS Waldenses, which cannot be proven. This fiction has been discounted.

How long did Thyatira last? Until no more daughters were born — they all existed at the same time.

When starting a new age, in a way, the man had part with the previous church, but was not actually a preaching part of it. They were taught and grounded by the past church and God gave them new truths and put them out on their own when starting the next stage of His Church. They had no thought of starting another Church, but wanted to restore the church to its former purity.

Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong was a member during the Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicean eras.

The Waldenses could claim no great theologian. The Bible says the apostles were ignorant and unlearned men.

Anabaptists Anabaptists (re-baptisers). A term applied to various Christian sects, including the true church. They were Sabbath keepers in Germany, appearing there about end of fifteenth century and in England a few years later. Various leaders of Anabaptists from Germany and the Albigenses (Sabbath keepers in France) cane into England where they were persecuted and imprisoned.
Sabbatarian Sabbatarian — the name adopted by Sabbath keepers in England soon after the Reformation. In sixteenth century the name Sabbatarian belonged to a sect. In modern times it means one who thinks that Sunday should be kept according to the Jewish Sabbath laws.

Each stage of the true church knew that they kept the Sabbath and did not come out of the Reformation nor out of the Catholic Church.

Edicts of Emperors and decrees of Councils changed Sabbath to Sunday.

Persecution and imprisonment in England resulted in emigration to the United States.

Lollards Lollards — a name applied to Christians of very different practices and doctrines, arose in Germany about beginning of fourteenth century. Walter Lollard,, a Waldensian barb, became so prominent that Waldensian Christians became known as Lollards. First English Lollards came from Germany — John Wycliff, but applied to followers of Lollard before this.
London, 1576 In 1576, the first church of Sabbath keeping Christians was established near London, England, by Rev. Bamfield (no doubt a true minister) a graduate of Oxford. It was called the Millyard church and still exists today. John Trask, Christopher Sands, ministers of true church. Theophilus Braehorn wrote a tract about Sabbath in 1630 which made quite an impact.

Rev. John James, pastor at Millyard, cruelly executed on trumped up charge of treason. Probably had something to do with immigration of Sabbatarians to United States and establishment of congregation at Newport, Rhode Island, ten years later.

United States Ceased to be true church when God removed candlestick from England and brought it to America. First American church established in 1671 at Newport, Rhode Island by Stephen Momford and was known at that time as the Seventh Day Church of God. They were the Church of God in this country until 1818.

Seventh Day Baptist

In that year a general conference adopted Seventh Day Baptist as denominational name and voted themselves right out of the true church. Before this they were a sect. About 1700 a second branch was founded near Philadelphia — the true church.

A third founded in northern New Jersey in 1705. In 1842 they formed a foreign missionary society with headquarters at Westerly, Rhode Island, and had academy at Salem, West Virginia. Dugger and Dodd were two main ones in church at that time.

Rev. 3:1 Sardis, "You have a name you are alive — Seventh Day Baptist, Seventh Day Church of God, Stanberry, Missouri, but are dead."

In 1935, Dugger was a member of the true church. England and America in Sardis Church.

In 1789 Shrewsbury, New Jersey Church emigrated to Salem, West Virginia (originally called New Salem, Virginia) and called themselves Seventh Day Baptists. All of the members did not approve of this change of name and some moved out, settling in other parts of the state and organized other Sabbath bodies.

Reconstruction The Reconstruction after 1860, moved to Stanberry, Missouri, for a period of seventy-two years (1861-1933), and continued to send forth the true doctrine. In 1933 reorganized and moved headquarters to Salem, West Virginia. God removed them as the true church, names of twelve apostles and seventy elders were drawn, the name of Herbert W. Armstrong being included in the latter.
Things to Remember The true church was always a sect. When they became large, well known and powerful, they were no longer the true church.

When the main body of a church took up arms in self defense as did the Paulicians and Waldenses, they were no longer the true church.

The true church always believed in true biblical doctrines: Baptism, Sabbath keeping, anti-trinity, etc.

A truth to remember in church history: Any church that had to go through tribulation had to do so in order to purify their impurities.

There has been no time since time of Christ when there have not been Sabbath keepers composing God's Church. No evidence of any form of observance of Sunday by Christians until middle of second century.

Chilliism Chilliism — the belief in a visible Kingdom of God on earth.

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Publication Date: 1973
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