Latin Christianity begins historically with the Montanist Carthaginian Theologian, Tertullian. All sectors of historical Christendom agree and attest to this fact. Yet it remains somewhat unclear just what kind of influence, apart from the use of the Latin tongue, and to what extent directly, Tertullian had on the Papacy. Origen, the great Alexandrian Mystical heretic, writing in the first half of the 3rd century, was one of the first to exalt the Papacy of Rome into a quasi-universal Bishopric. Oracular infallibility had petered out in the Christian Church by the time of the arrival of the Apocalypse of John, and shortly afterwards, with the expiry of the last of the disciples of the Apostles; nearing the mid part of the 2nd century, the last of the manifestations of the “ Gifts of the Spirit in Power” had passed away, and Saint Paul’s prophecy to that effect in 1 Corinthians 13 had finally been fulfilled. The first questions regarding oracular infallibility were to be revived anew by the ex-priest of the demoness Cybele ( according to the Theologian Saint Gregory of Nazianzus); Montanus of Phrygia in modern day Turkey.
With the cessation of the GIFTS and oracular prophetic infallibility, the swing toward a “ new source of infallibility” was very gradually moving, once again, in the direction of Rome. Though the doctrine of “ Papal Infallibility” was only to be enacted centuries later by the Roman Collegia and Papacy, the vehicle for the “ belief in” such oracular infallibility came much earlier in the form of Montanus…. The scene was set for the “ great counterfeit” of the prophetic spirit of oracular infallibility itself, and since “ all roads lead to Rome”, it is to Rome that all the pseudo-religious filth of the known world was to eventually find its way.. Once there, the great “ melting pot of the Papacy” would absorb and embrace this new ingredient in the brewing Ecumenical broth called “ Roman Catholicism”; a term reprehensible and blasphemic in itself, due to its claim that the “ universal” ( Catholic) church is somehow ONLY to reside and branch from the seven-hilled whore of Rome…
The Montanists, however, who found an able convert and apologist in the Carthaginian theologian; Tertullian, as the real founders of Latin Christianity, appeared in history at a time when the last of the disciples of the Apostles had almost disappeared, and along with their departure the Apostle Paul’s prophecy in 1 Corinthians 13 that “ tongues shall cease, prophecy shall fail”, namely the cessation of the OPEN manifestation of the GIFTS of the Spirit in power, and the sealing of prophecy and the Scripture Canon by the writing of the Apocalypse of John, was regarded as in the throes of being virtually fulfilled.
“…..IV. Montanism and the Canon.—The most fundamental innovation of Montanist teaching was the theory of an authorized development of Christian doctrine, as opposed to the older theory that Christian doctrine was preached in its completeness by the apostles and that the church had merely to preserve faithfully the tradition of their teaching. The Montanists did not reject the apostolic revelations nor abandon any doctrines the church had learned from its older teachers. The revelations of the new prophecy were to supplement, not to displace, Scripture. They believed that while the fundamental truths of faith remained unshaken, points both of discipline and doctrine might receive correction. “A process of development was exhibited in God’s revelations. It had its rudimentary principle in the religion of nature, its infancy in the law and the prophets, its youth in the gospel, its full maturity only in the dispensation of the Paraclete. Through His enlightenment the dark places of Scripture are made clear, parables made plain, those passages of which heretics had taken advantage cleared of all ambiguity” (Tert. de Virg. Vel. i.; de Res. Carn. 63). Accordingly Tertullian appeals to the new revelations on questions of discipline, e.g. second marriages, and also on questions of doctrine, as in his work against Praxeas and his treatise on the Resurrection of the Flesh. Some have thought it a thing to be regretted that the church by her condemnation of Montanism should have suppressed the freedom of individual prophesying. But each new prophetic revelation, if acknowledged as divine, would put as great a restraint on future individual speculation as words of Scripture or decree of pope or council. If Montanism had triumphed, Christian doctrine would have been developed, not under the superintendence of the church teachers most esteemed for wisdom, but usually of wild and excitable women. Thus Tertullian himself derives his doctrine as to the materiality and the form of the soul from a revelation made to an ecstatica of his congregation (de Anima, 9). To the Montanists it seemed that if God’s Spirit made known anything as true, that truth could not be too extensively published. It is evident from quotations in Epiphanius and Tertullian that the prophecies of Maximilla and Montanus were committed to writing. To those who believed in their divine inspiration, these would practically form additional Scriptures. Hippolytus tells that the Montanists “have an infinity of books of these prophets whose words they neither examine by reason, nor give heed to those who can, but are carried away by their undiscriminating faith in them, thinking that they learn through their means something more than from the law, the prophets, and the gospels.” Didymus is shocked at a prophetical book emanating from a female, whom the apostle did not permit to teach. It would be a mistake to suppose that the Montanistic disputes led to the formation of a N.T. canon. On the contrary, it is plain that when these disputes arose Christians had so far closed their N.T. canon that they were shocked that any modern writing should be made equal to the inspired books of the apostolic age. The Montanist disputes led to the publication of lists recognized by particular churches, and we consider that it was in opposition to the multitude of Montanist prophetic books that Caius in his disputation gave a list recognized by his church. The controversy also made Christians more scrupulous about paying to other books honours like those given to the books of Scripture, and we believe that it was for this reason that the Shepherd of Hermas ceased to have a place in church reading. But still we think it plain from the history that the conception of a closed N.T. canon was found by Montanism and not then created….” ( Wace’s Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature).
The new “ pentecostal spirituals”, the Montanists, sought, however, a different kingdom to that of Cerinthus and the Ebionite Gnostic heretics. Their’s was a kingdom of the CHURCH in opposition to both the Cerinthian AND the pure Millenial Kingdom of the Apocalypse of John. Their legacy was replicated during the early 16th century Reformation era at Muenster in Germany by the AnaBaptists under Thomas Muntzer ( who renamed their city “ Jerusalem”), and much later we find the Mormons under Joseph Smith carrying on the same legacy, except that this time the fanaticism of the Montanists was united with the Judaizing Mystery Religions of Cerinthus and the Gnostics, to establish their new Jerusalem at Salt Lake City in Utah. William Blake, the “ poet of British Israelism”, also believed that London or Glastonbury would have Jerusalem “ established” on “English Shores”……
Montanus, an ex-priest of Cybele/Sybil in Phrygia ( the Phrygians were related to the Brugians of Belgium, and kindred of the British race, and had their home in Asia Minor; modern Turkey), began his prophesying in the latter part of the second century, and with the aid of two prophetesses, Prisca and Maximilla, sought to revive the “ gifts of the Spirit” which had already been extinguished, and thereby, as a forced fulfillment of the prophet Joel’s “ later rain outpouring”, attempt to usher in the Millenial Kingdom of Christ and the Church in the region of PEPUZA, in Phrygia.. Initially, the Montanists were held in abhorance by all Christians, including the Roman Church, but under their convert Tertullian, they and their teachings were absorbed into the mainstream prophetic ethos and life of the Western Church ( particularly after the time of Pope Zephyrinus @ 200 AD) to such a degree, that their descendants, the Popes of Rome, when speaking “ ex cathedra” are said even today to be speaking “ Montanistically” or “ Infallibly”..
Tertullian, the “ father” of Latin Christianity, remained and died a Montanist apologist.. It is to the influence of Tertullian and the Montanists that we owe the development of subsequent earthly “ kingdom-building” theology and heresy which has been embraced by the mainstream part of Christendom; Roman and Greek; Protestant and Coptic.. The various kingdom building exertions of the past 1800 years or so have all stemmed from the above twain systems; that of Cerinthus with the Ebionite/ Arian Antichristian element; and that of Montanus the “ False Prophet”, from whom the later Papacy takes its existence and cue… The pretensions of the Franciscan Spirituals and their false prophet Joachim of Fiore ( the Italian pseudo-prophet from Calabria who greatly influenced the Reformers, particularly Thomas Muntzer the AnaBaptist Radical); the madness of the militant and anarchic AnaBaptist Radicals such as Thomas Muntzer ( another disciple of Montanus); the disciples of Joseph Smith, the Mormons; the Azusa Street “ outpouring”; the Worldwide Church of God; the Charismatic and Pentecostal Movements, and a myriad of other sects and cults, all hearken back to the False Prophet Montanus and his frenzied inventions..
It was Montanus who gave to the western church the full intimation of “ Replacement Theology”; otherwise known as “ Supersessionism”: the belief that the Old Covenant has been “replaced” by the New Covenant, and that the Church has inherited ALL the promises of Biblical Israel; the Jewish nation, and therefore it is to the Christian Church that the lot falls to establish the Millenial “ kingdom of God on earth”… Montantus accomplished this by insisting that the doctrine of “ Progressive Revelation” had NOT infact ceased with the writing of the Apocalypse of John, but had continued.. The Arian convert, Mahommed, was to use this doctrine in his blasphemous claims to be the “ prophet of his age”, or the “ great prophet”. Most Christian denominations today still maintain the doctrine of “ Progressive Revelation” under the banner of the “ Continuation of the Gifts/Miracles” in order to justify their counterfeiting of the original “manifestations” of the Holy Spirit. Amongst Evangelicals even, the doctrine of Progressive Revelation has been allied to notions about the progressive (supposed) “ 7 Church Ages”; a theory popularized by the followers of Edward Irving and John Darby, and a theory that was much earlier taught by the Rosicrucians of the “ Philadelphia Society” in London, who sought to justify the advent of a “ prophet of each successive Church Age ( including Montanus, Manichaeus, Mahommed etc.etc)in synchronization with the Seven Letters to the Churches as found in the Apocalypse of Saint John…The works of Jane Lead and Richard Roach are replete with this Rosicrucian theory of “ Church Ages and Progressive Revelation”, supposed to have encompassed the last 2000 years or so.
Augustine of Hippo, an ex-Manichean heretic who transcribed the Manichean worship of “ fate” into the theological doctrine of “ predestination” which Calvin later embraced and further developed in Geneva, in his monumental work “ The City of God”, codified the blueprint for the “ theology of replacement” in favour of the, by now, extremely worldly Constantinian Church, in opposition to the legitimate future claims of the Jews. This work was inspired by the sack and downfall of Rome at the hands of the northern European Gothic invader Alaric in 409-410 AD.. It was the opinion of the ancients that the end of the world would take place when Rome fell, and seeing no imminent Jewish kingdom raised upon the earth from the ashes of Rome, Augustine manufactured one for the next best thing; the Constantinian Church of the post-Nicene Council era… For most theologians, both Roman AND Protestant, ALL theology begins with the Latins: Tertullian and Augustine of Hippo… For the early Church, true and pure theology ENDS with Tertullian and Augustine of Hippo…
And so it was that by gradualism and stealth, the original understanding of the future restoration of the Jews and the coming Millenial Kingdom of the Father where : “His Kingdom come, His will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”, which would be inaugurated and presided over by the returning Jewish Messiah/ Christ Jesus Himself, to rule from the revived “ Throne of David” ( which does not exist in the Heavenly Realms, but is solely to be ascribed to the offspring of David on our literal earth) was in pincer fashion fabricated by both the Judaizing Cerinthian elements active without the Church, as well as the Christian Montanistic elements active within the Church: BOTH having the same agenda and goal, effectively, to establish a kingdom THEOCRACY on earth, and BOTH to be synthesized eventually in the very near future under the aegis of the final Antichrist Emperor of Europe; descendant of the Jewish tribe of Dan, and the final Montanistic POPE; the False Prophet….
The Council of Nicea, and ALL subsequent Ecumenical Councils, unjustly abrogated to itself apostolic authority, inspiration and sanction over and above the “ Faith as once given” in the Apostolic Creed, which was already sealed as complete by the first Apostolic Council at Jerusalem as described by Luke in the Book of Acts of the Apostles, and conveyed to all posterity by Clement of Rome in a document known as the “ Apostolic Constitutions/Teachings and Canons/ the Didache” ( which was a transcript of the teaching and doctrines as conveyed by all the Apostles gathered at the Jerusalem Council); never to be modified or changed for the duration of the entire Church Age.. This actual “second” Council ( later known as the FIRST “ great” or “ecumenical” council of Nicea) was called into sitting by the Emperor Constantine; the first emperor to tolerate openly Christianity, and himself, according to many historians, of British/Phrygian stock and heritage, though born in Nyssus ( present day NIS, in Serbia), anciently called “ Dacia”… He was declared emperor in York, Britain, his family homeland, and through the Montanistically-inspired /kingdom-building disciples of Tertullian; his counsellors such as Lactantius, Constantine managed to mould and merge the entire prophetic role of the Emperor with that of the now very worldly and somewhat corrupted Christian Church, to such a degree, that the original understanding of the future restoration of the Jews and the Millenial Kingdom was not only anathematized, but persecuted as well.. The Apostle John’s crowning work, the Apocalypse; the “ cessation of all prophecy” and the seal of the Scripture Canon, was therefore deemed to be furthering heresy itself, and many Bishops there were who sought to drive it even from the Canon of Scripture.. Subsequently, and centuries down the track, Luther AND the Popes sought to do the same, following the example of their predecessor in the cause; saint Jerome, the early antagonist of the Apocalypse of John, and an avid adherent of “ replacement theology”…..