The Great schism (1054)

The East-west Schism / The Great schism (1054) – Eastern Orthodox / Roman Catholic Church schism.
Many people (even protestants) believe the division in the church started with Martin Luther. I hope to ‘briefly’ cover some of the major events before the protestant reformation and God willing as accurately as possible.

In 1054 there was a split between the Roman Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox Church. Their dispute was over the Papacy (which developed over time), changes in the Nicene Creed (Rome changed it) – and other things I wont cover here.

I wont get into the creed here but simply put, Rome Changed the Nicene Creed; The East said you cannot do this without the council of Bishops. Rome said oh yes we can because of the papacy.
The key issue between Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic split was/is what it always boils down too:


From Encyclopedia Britannica:

On July 16, 1054, Humbert of Silva Candida (a french cardinal RC) excommunicated Patriarch Michael (Eastern Orthodox) as a heretic; a general condemnation of the entire Greek Orthodox Church followed.
This simultaneous excommunication lasted till 1965.

  • Both churches today deny and attack sola scriptura.
  • Both churches blame sola scriptura for all the problems in Christianity.
  • Both churches claim to be the one true church that Christ established.
  • Both churches claim apostolic succession. (Rome had 2-3 Popes at one point in history, more on that later)

Both Churches excommunicated each other and condemned each other as heretics for 900 years.
The reality is the Church has always had problems since the beginning. But it is because of the abandonment of the authority of scripture, not holding to the authority of scripture that creates splits and heresies. The apostles were clear that we are to hold to the doctrines they preached, nothing more, nothing less.

If we can’t use scripture then how do we know anything? How does the believer in 2019 test any teachings or traditions without the Bible? The truth is that without God’s Word the only thing man can ultimately say is “Because the Church (not God) has spoken – Sola Ecclesia” – and the believer must be willing ultimately to submit to the will of men and not to the will of God.

Authority —
Titus 2:1-5

But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: 2 that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience; 3 the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— 4 that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.