It did not take long for seeds of division to begin taking root in the early church. You can clearly see Paul warning the church in Rome, exhorting them to continue to abide in God's lovingkindness and tender mercies.1 He told them if they did not continue to obey the Master's commands, they would be cut off.2

Likewise, Paul was very concerned that the Corinthians would go astray in their minds, for there were already divisions among them.3 Although he wanted to present them to our Savior as a pure virgin, he could discern that Satan was deceiving them by his craftiness, giving them another gospel, another spirit. They were being led astray from their simple devotion to the Son of God which kept them abiding in His love and bound them together in the unity of the Spirit. There was no diversity of opinion among them until they began thinking they were missing something and could receive it apart from Paul.4

Thus, the diversity that people in the early church allowed in their hearts opened the door for the evil one to begin driving wedges between them. As jealousy and strife filled their hearts, they began to divide into sects with some following Paul, some Apollos, and some Peter.5

This diversity of opinion grew to the point where, in the fourth century, the descendents of the church in Rome and the descendents of the church in Corinth divided from each other into the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church. This was the beginning of denominationalism. The seeds of division continued to grow in these two sects, even though they both claimed to be ruled by the God who is One.6

In the 1500s further division arose concerning what the gospel meant, and Protestantism began. Now the Protestants have divided into hundreds of sects, all claiming to be led by the Spirit of the God who is One. So denominationalism, which had its roots in the decline of the early church, is the full-blown outcome of the diversity that individual people tolerated in their hearts while claiming to be in unity.7 This divided condition among Christians is an embarrassment even to the leaders of these sects today, forcing them to reduce the church to a mystical body with no substance from which to demonstrate the love of God to the world.8

  • 1. Romans 11:22
  • 2. Acts 3:22-23
  • 3. 1 Corinthians 3:1-3
  • 4. 2 Corinthians 11:2-4
  • 5. 1 Corinthians 3:1-3
  • 6. 1 John 1:6; John 8:12; 16:2-3
  • 7. 1 John 1:6
  • 8. John 17:20-23

The Twelve Tribes is a confederation of twelve self-governing tribes, composed of self-governing communities. We are disciples of the Son of God whose name in Hebrew is Yahshua. We follow the pattern of the early church in Acts 2:44 and 4:32, truly believing everything that is written in the Old and New Covenants of the Bible, and sharing all things in common.

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