We've mentioned in the introduction pages of this website the term "the dark ages" or what
most Latter Day Saints call "THE GREAT APOSTACY". It is not our intention to give you a history lesson
here. Volumes of books have been written on this extensive subject and are available to any inquiring mind on the
internet or at your public library.
What we are referring to is the beginning of that era when most of the Holy Apostles of the Lord, namely Peter,
James, Paul, Timothy and the like, we're martyred for their cause; the cause of spreading Christendom throughout
the then known world. These faithful brethren had been commissioned by their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ to "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them
in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost…." (Matt 28:19-20).
All had been given specific Power and Authority (The Holy
Priesthood) to accomplish this commandment and also to set apart others to do the same. However, because of "wickedness
abounding in the hearts of men", they were, for the most part, martyred and no other men were called to continue
the work. There was one exception that we know of and that was John "the Beloved" who was blessed to
remain (John 21:21-23). But beyond the book of Revelation, nothing much is known about his ministry.
From that time forth, the Spirit of God withdrew, to some degree, and men were left to continue the work to the
best of their abilities, but not with inspired doctrine or the leadership of "Holy Men of God" ("For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man:
but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost" ) - 2 Peter 1:21.
As the Apostle Paul said good-bye for the last time to some
of the members of the Church he had grown to love so deeply on his missionary journeys, he gave them this chilling
warning of things to befall the growing body of disciples: "I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing
the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them" (Acts 20:29-30).
Quoting a lecture by Dr. Andrew Skinner, Dean of Religious
Education at Brigham Young University referring to Paul's warning: "This may be the most pointed and succinct description in all scripture of how the great apostasy of
the early Church came about...... Surely Paul knew that the apostasy that would significantly change the Lord's
church was not going to be a gradual drift from divine truth or a waning interest in gospel principles. Nor would
it be well-meaning but erroneous activity on the part of a few misguided souls. Apostasy is a Greek word-apostasía-and
means literally "to stand apart from," "to rebel against," or "to revolt." Apostasy is a conscious act of rebellion against God by deliberately
attempting to change divinely appointed doctrine and practice and by opposing God's chosen leaders. Paul foresaw that once the Apostles met their demise, the demise
of the true Church would follow."
Without the Lord's appointed spokesmen to direct the affairs of the church into truth and light, according to the
Lord's dictates, truth would be lost.
Dr. Skinner continues: "The most impressive acknowledgment of the necessity of Apostles comes from Roger Williams
(1603?-1683), founder of the first Baptist church in the American colonies. Williams was educated at Cambridge
University, apparently ordained in the Church of England, and set sail for North America in 1630 searching for
religious freedom. These are his words: "There
is no regularly constituted church on earth, nor any person qualified to administer any church ordinances; nor
can there be until new apostles are sent by the Great Head of the Church for whose coming I am seeking". (Note:
We have assembled other 'reformers' Here - to return, use your Back Button)
There were many religious "reformers" during the late middle ages who professed similar feelings as Roger
Williams. You can read the complete lecture by Dr. Skinner, by clicking Here. Please take
the time to read it. It is very edifying.
We are truly grateful to testify that after so many years of "wondering in the wilderness of a dark and benighted
world" that truth has been restored; that 12 Apostles have once again been called of God; that a Prophet,
under the direct tutelage of Jesus Christ, directs the affairs of His Church ; that the Holy Order of Christ, namely
the Priesthood is, once again, restored to the earth.