Ignatius of Antioch on Unity in the Apostolic Church, c. 110


“Come together in common, one and all without exception in charity, in one faith and in one Jesus Christ, who is of the race of David according to the flesh, the son of man, and the Son of God, so that with undivided mind you may obey the bishop and the priests, and break one Bread which is the medicine of immortality and the antidote against death, enabling us to live forever in Jesus Christ.”Epistle to the Ephesians, 20

The Church of Christ was alive and structured as Jesus Christ had left it to Peter according to Matthew 16:17-19 in ~110 AD.

Ignatius of Antioch, ordained by John the Evangelist, was writing to local elements of the church along his road to Rome where he would be martyred by lions.

In his letter to the Ephesians, Ignatius follows the writings of Paul; and in the same vein as Paul wrote to Timothy and Titus to tell them how bishops (the episkopos) should lead their bishopricks, Ignatius tells the Ephesians to follow their bishops and priests (the presbyteros).

You can read the full text of the epistles of Ignatius here with other ecclesiastical writings from the early Church: Church Fathers

God bless.


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