Thread: 1 Timothy 3
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Old 9th October 2010, 10:45 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,640

Originally Posted by Liguori View Post
Was the priesthood as we know it established at this time?
If deacons were required to limit themselves to one woman,did they then become priests?
Essentially,what I am trying to understand,is did the earliest church have hard and fast rules that we would recognise?
Did they have a celibate priesthood that celebrated "Mass"?

The priesthood and all the Sacraments were established by Jesus Christ. The priesthood (Holy Orders) exists in three degrees: bishop, priest, deacon. The form of the Mass changed over time. Celibacy was found among priests from the beginning, but ther were also some married priests. The fundamentals were all present from the beginning but the form and the disciplines changed over time. There were fewer rules in the early Church (by rules, I mean disciplines). They did not use the term Mass; they called it the breaking of the bread.

The phrase 'husband of one wife' is a figure of speech indicating faithfulness. A man might be married, then his wife might die, then he might marry again, and then he might become a deacon.

{2:42} Now they were persevering in the doctrine of the Apostles, and in the communion of the breaking of the bread, and in the prayers.
{2:46} Also, they continued, daily, to be of one accord in the temple and to break bread among the houses; and they took their meals with exultation and simplicity of heart,
{20:7} Then, on the first Sabbath, when we had assembled together to break bread, Paul discoursed with them, intending to set out the next day. But he prolonged his sermon into the middle of the night.

[1 Corinthians 10]
{10:16} The cup of benediction that we bless, is it not a communion in the Blood of Christ? And the bread that we break, is it not a participation in the Body of the Lord?
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
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