Faith & Reason ... a mystery

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Nicolaitions - WHO AND WHY DOES GOD HATE THEM?

Who were the NICOLAITANS?
Did God actual HATE them?

"But this you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate." (Revelation 2:6, NKJV)

Thus you also have those who hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate." (Revelation 2:15)

When our Lord Jesus Christ walked among men, He taught His disciples to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, whom He denounced as hypocrites. With them He classed the chief priests and officials of the temple, together with the recognized teachers in the synagogues. He declared they had so corrupted the truth of God, which they were supposed to preach, with the doctrines and ordinances of men, that the truth, as originally given, was no longer with them. That which these blind leaders of the blind were giving forth as truth of God was making their converts twofold more the children of hell than they were before accepting the schism by these corrupt teachers.

What are the deeds of the Nicolaitans?

In the book of Revelation it is both "the deeds" and "the doctrine" of the Nicolaitans, who affected two separate churches, that the Lord addresses:

"Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; . . . But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. " (Revelation 2:1, 6, KJV)

"And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write, 'These things says He who has the sharp two-edged sword: . . . Thus you also have those who hold THE DOCTRINE of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate." (Revelation 2:12, 15)

The Lord demands repentance on the part of those who hold and practice these things and He threatens drastic punishment if they do not obey Him:

"Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent." (Revelation 2:5)

"Repent, or else I will come to you quickly and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth." (Revelation 2:16)




Meaning of the word Nicolaitans

The word Nicolaitans (Greek: Νικολαΐ́της or Nikolaitës, Strong's Concordance Number #G3531) is a compound word which is composed of THREE Greek words. Because of it being a proper noun, the word is TRANSFERRED instead of being translated into English. Thus, it is subject to the laws of Greek construction in regard to ellipsis, contraction and phonetics.

The three Greek words used in the construction of Nicolaitans are:

  • NIKOS, of which we use the English equivalents instead of the Greek letters, as we shall also of the other two. Nikos is defined as "a conquest; victory; triumph; the conquered; and by implication, dominancy over the defeated." Another transferred name in which this term is used is "Nicopolis," which is composed of Niko, which means conquest and polis, which means city. Hence, the city of conquest, or city of victory.

  • LAOS, which means people. Another use of this word is found in NICOLAS, which is transferred and is composed of Nikos-laos and means one who is "victorious over the people," the letter "s" being in both words the nominative case ending, which is retained only at the end of the word to denote the case, while "a" short and "o" short are contracted into "a" long.

    A still further transferred use of LAOS is found in the name Lao(s)diceans (Greek: Λαοδικεύς or Laodikeus, Strong's Concordance Number #G2994), compounded with DIKE or DICE as the Greek "k" is the equivalent English "c." Thus, in the name Laodiceans, we have LAOS, meaning the people, and DICE, meaning judgment or vengeance, i.e., the people of my judgment, or of my vengeance. Also the Greek word la(ic)os, which means "laymen," of which LA-OS is the root and stem, which selfsame word, with the "o" short contracted to "i", to which root and stem the plural definite article TON is joined to form LAITON, which is a Greek phrase meaning "the laity."

  • TON is the third and last word entering into the construction of the proper name Nicolaitans. TON, in which Omega, the long "o", is contracted into long "a", thus making the word TAN which is the genitive case plural in all the genders of the definite article 'the.'

We therefore have, without the legal Greek construction, the English hyphenated word NIKOS-LAOS-TON, but which, with its lawful elisions and contractions, becomes the English name: Nicolaitans.

Is there a FULLER meaning to the word Nicolaitans?

The full meaning of the word Nicolaitans, in its native tongue and in its ecclesiastical setting, is that the bishops and prelates of the Church have gained a triumphal victory or conquest over the LAITON, the laity, until they have been compelled to submit to the arbitrary dominion of men who have become that thing which God hates - 'Lords over God's heritage':

"The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; NOR AS BEING LORDS OVER THOSE ENTRUSTED TO YOU ('lords over [God's] heritage' in the KJV Bible), but being examples to the flock;" (1Peter 5:1-3).

The evidence of this full meaning is found in all our common school dictionaries, among which we find the following definition of the term "hierarchy: the power of dominion, government by ecclesiastical rulers," to which the following is introduced in evidence:

"If anyone shall say that there is not in the Catholic Church a hierarchy established by the divine ordination, consisting of bishops, presbyters and ministers, let him be anathema, Council of Trent (translation) XXIII 6." (Century Dictionary)

In other words, let anyone who has the audacity to say there is not a hierarchy, not a collection of human beings who have been given the power by other men of dominion, as ecclesiastical rulers over churchmen who are declared God's heritage, let that man be ACCURSED --- let death and hell and the devil get him. Surely, the thing in which that ecclesiastical company is glorying is their shame!

Webster's dictionary defines the word "episcopal" as

"the power of government, belonging to, or invested in, bishops or prelates. Government of the church by bishops."

Also,

"in episcopacy, the order of bishops is superior to the other clergy, and has exclusive power to confer orders."

In this definition it is affirmed that a certain portion of presbyters (elders) were even "in apostolic times superior in authority to ordinary presbyters," and also mentions the fact that episcopacy recognizes "episcopal rank" which is created by the institution thus governed; all of which affirms that any church in which episcopal government obtains is practicing the very carnal and fleshly iniquity of creating "Superiors" in what should be a holy brotherhood. The use of this appellation makes INFERIORS out of brethren who are in the selfsame clergy.

How can RANK and HIERARCHY destroy a church?

The approbation of "ordinary elders" demands a set of elders who are extra special, thus creating "rank" (caste) in the otherwise Divine brotherhood, all of which DESTROYS holy fellowship, creates division and strife, and fosters envy. No marvel that our Lord should hate a thing like that, condemn it, and demand that those who are guilty repent.

But will they? Yes, some will when the tribulation is on. Others, however, will stick to their ecclesiastical crowd, vainly imagining that their boasted "superiority" will carry them through that time of the greatest trouble the world has ever known, or will know. They must go down with the rest of the hosts of Antichrist.

And yet, one of the most unfortunate features of all this is that there are those in the Christian Church who do not hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, but who practice "their deeds" of dominating the laity by lording it over the Church of Jesus Christ, which should be subject only to one Divine Master!


Written by: J. H. Allen
edited by BibleStudy.org

We can learn from this great article by J.H. Allen. May we stay the course laid out before us and run with dedication to Jesus. You know I love ya, Don

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