Revelation: Preface - Question 15 of 39

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Section 2 of Preface: World Events Near the Time of the Writing of The Revelation:

Let's now look at some some things from history which happened during the reign of the Roman Emperor Hadrian (A.D.138) and the reign of the Roman Emperor Antonius Pius (A.D. 117 to A.D.161):

Satan attacks from a new direction - False Teachers:

Eusebius writes: "Like brilliant lights the churches were now illuminating the world, and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ was flourishing everywhere when the Devil, who hates what is good, true, and saving, turned all his weapons against the church. Previously he had attacked her from the outside through persecutions, but now he was prevented, he resorted to internal tactics, using wicked impostors as corrupt agents of destruction, assuming the name of our religion to destroy every believer they could ensnare while deflecting unbelievers from that path that leads to salvation." (1)


A certain Menander, (in the early part of the 2nd century) who was a Samaritan from of village of Caparettea, became of disciple of Simon (not Simon Peter) and was similarly driven by demons...deluded many by magical arts...persuaded his followers that they would not die.(1)

Saturninus and Basilides

From Menander...issued a serpentine power with two mouths and twin heads that established two heretical leaders: Saturninus...and Basilides of Alexandria.(1)

Saturninus largely taught the same false doctrine as Menander... (1)

But Basilides, who founded schools of detestable heresy in Syria and in Egypt, under the pretense of secret mysteries, stretched fantasy to the infinite in devising monstrous myths...Basilides compiled twenty-four books on the Gospel and named (two) as his own prophets...inventing outlandish names to impress the gullible...he taught that there was no harm in things offered to idols or in freely denying the faith in times of persecution. The teachings of Basilides flourished between A.D. 120 to 140. (1)


Irenaeus also writes that Carpocrates was a contemporary of these, the father of another heresy called that of the Gnostics.(1)

Spells and sorcery

Unlike Basilides, who claimed to transmit Simon's magic secretly, the Gnostics did so openly, flaunting their spells and sorcery, dreams and s�ances. (1)

Vile deeds

They teach that those who intend to become initiatives in their mysteries (or rather, obscenities) must perform all the vilest deeds, for in no other way can they elude the "cosmic rulers." (1)

Made slaves of pitiful dupes

By using such ministers, the demon made slaves of pitiful dupes and brought discredit on the divine Word among unbelievers, since scandal tainted the whole Christian community. (1)

Suspicion and false rumors

It was primarily because of this that a wicked and blasphemous suspicion regarding us circulated among the heathen of that day: that we practiced incest with mothers and sisters and partook of wicked food. (1)

Men worshipped as deity...and Christ's deity challenged

c.130�c.150, Alexandrian philosopher, founder with his son Epiphanes of a Hellenistic sect, notoriously licentious, related to Gnosticism. Epiphanes wrote a treatise, On Justice, that advocated communal ownership of property, including women; he died, age 17, at Cephalonia and was long worshiped as a deity there. The Carpocratians believed that men had formerly been united with the Absolute, had been corrupted, and would, by despising creation, be saved in this life or else later through successive transmigrations. Jesus, they held, was but one of several wise men who had achieved deliverance. Source: The Columbia Encyclopedia. "But this success (of Satan) was brief, for the truth reasserted itself and gleamed more brightly as time went on..."(1)

(1) Source: Eusebius - The Church History (Eusebius of Caesarea - A.D. 260-339 - was the first to undertake the task of tracing the rise of Christianity during its crucial first three centuries from Christ to Constantine.)


According to the historical accounts written by Eusebius...during the time that Hadrian was emperor of Rome (A.D. 117 to 138) and Antonius Pius was emperor of Rome (A.D. 138 to 161) what became a greater enemy against Jesus' church?

Dragons Rome False Teaching