Other claimants to Nazarene root include the “Apostolic Christian church (Nazarene) that originated from the Swiss Nazarene Baptist movement and the “Church of the Nazarene” which is a Christian protestant denomination that was born out of the holiness movement of the late 19th century.
The sect of the Nazarenes or other groups that claim to have taken their roots from the sect may have tried to preserve some of the doctrines central to Hebrew Yahosheanism. They may have passed through eyes of enemies of Yahoshea Meshiyach who persecuted them in the manner of Yahosheans of early centuries but cannot claim to be free from perdictions or corruption that engulfed the gentile Yahosheanity or Christendom of today.
Yahoshea Meshiyach promised of the coming siege of his followers and destruction of Yerusalem and the temple. He prophesied of the persecutions and trials that his followers will encounter and these promises have come to pass. The next round of important promise was coming of the comforter and the transfer of the kingdom of Yahweh from Yerusalem to a new land.
Based on these promises, the true sect that will continue from the 1st century Hebrew Yahosheanism must be led by the promised Comforter and such officer must effect the transference of the holy land to the newly promised area by Yahoshea.
Since the Nazarenes of the 4th century and above or those sects that claim to have emerged from it were not led by the promised comforter, they are not the truly expected continuing ministries of Yahoshea Meshiyach and his apostles. This is a true disclosure to those that claim to be Nazarenes in this era. May Yahweh bless those that act according to this revelation in Yahoshea’s name – Hallelujah.
The identical name of the followers or assembly of Yahoshea Meshiyach was not the “Nazarenes” rather they were truly known as “Yahosheane” which mean “followers of Yahoshea”. Nazarene was a name given to the sect by non-members who were totally ignorant of the true identity or name of the fold.
As the people of Yerusalem rejected Yahoshea as the Meshiyach, they equally rejected the name of the sect he founded that bear his name along rather they resorted to the term “Nazarene” which means “men from Nazareth”. The name of the saviour is Yahoshea and he addressed his adherent as “my followers” meaning that they bear his name as their sect’s tomb mark.
SAINT THOMAS CHRISTIANS – ORIGIN:
This is a religious movement in Keralla India that professed Yahosheanism during 1st and 2nd centuries but was renamed to Christianity through the influence of the Church of the East that centered at Persia.
The religious movement traced its origin from evangelical activities of Thomas the Apostle in India during the first century Ad. Saint Thomas Church remained united in liturgy and leadership till 17th century when it started to split into various factions, denominations and traditions.
Originally the movement was established by Apostle Thomas who followed Yahoshea Meshiyach directly. He left the city of Yahuda after the first Roman-Hebrew war of 70Ad and moved to India where he met with the Cochin and Bene Hebrews who settled in Malinkara.
Apostle Thomas established seven station of the assembly at the following areas – Kodungallur, Kollam, Niranam, Nilackal (Chayal), Kokkamangalam, Kottakkayal (Paravoor), Palayoor and Thiruvithamcode Arappally.
The Saint Thomas church was originally called the “Nasrani” or “Nasrani Mappila”. “Nasrani”, was derived from “Nazareth” the adopted home town of Yahoshea Meshiyach. While “Mappila” was an Indian honoritic applied to members of non-Indian faiths. For example the Yahudeans at India were called the “Yuda Mappila” and such applied to other non-Indian sects.
During 3rd century, the East-Syrian settlers and missionaries from Persia who were members of the Church of the East arrived in India and took over the activities of the “Nasrani” sect that was of Hebrew and Yahoshean’s tradition blended with Indian cultural heritage. They mixed this tradition into a Syriac method of Christianity.
Interestingly, during the period, the Yahoshean assembly at Antioch and Persian territories have been transformed into a Syriac tradition that was identified as the Church of East.
History record that the Saint Thomas Church’s growth was facilitated by the missionary effort of Nastorian Thomas of Cana during 6th century.
The efforts of Thomas of Cana generated a subgroup of the Saint Thomas Church known as the “Knanaya” or Southists. There were some subgroups of the sect that traced their ancestry through Thomas Cana’s Indian wife.
Due to influence of Syriac Church over the Saint Thomas church, the Indian people and authority began to identify it as the “Syrian Christians” especially for reason of distinguishing it with some evangelical Christians who followed the Latin liturgy but came later into India.
The term, “Syrian Christians” were firstly given to the group by the Dutch colonial authority in 16th century. The group may have been renamed to the “Saint Thomas Christian by the same Portuguese explorers or missionaries.
The general term used by the Indian natives for the body was the Nasrani and such continued until the entrance of the Syrians, though the sect had great reverence to Apostle Thomas that established it.
ACTIVITIES OF THE CHURCH OF THE EAST:
As the migration of the East Syrians into India increased, the relationship between the Saint Thomas Church and the Church of the East strengthened. The church of the East provided the Saint Thomas Church with the clergy, holy texts and eccliastical infrastructure.
In 650Ad, Patriach Ishoyahb III officially established the Jurisdiction of the Church of the East over the Saint Thomas Church. In 8th century, Patriarch Timothy 1, created the community of the Saint Thomas Church into eccliastical province of India which became one of the provinces of the Church of the East.
Based on this creation, the province of India was headed by a Metropolitan Bishop that is been dispatched from Persia and its See was at Mylapore where the shrine of Apostle Thomas was located. The Metropolitan Bishop headed a varying number of Bishops and a native Archdeacon who had authority over the clergy and exercised great amount of secular power.
The news of the exploit of the Church of the East at India spread to the Western Rome. The English King Alfred the Great sent a mission and gifts to the Saint Thomas tomb in 803Ad.
Between 8th and 13th centuries, there was dislocation between the Saint Thomas Church and the Church of the East due to distance involved and geopolitical turmoilzs of the period. This situation worsened following the collapse of the Church of East’s eccliastical and hierarchical order in most of the Asian territories during later 14th century.
Within that vast period, there were no Metropolitan Bishops for some generations and the church was based on the activities of archdeacons.
Towards the end of the 15th century, the archdeacon sent envoys to the patriarch of the Church of the East, Coptic Pope of Alexandria, Syriac Orthordox Pariach of Antioch requesting a new bishop for India. The Patriach of the Church of the East responded to the request by consecrating two bishops and dispatching them to India to restore the ecclesiastical infrastructure and to re-establish the fraternal ties with the patriarchate.
Though the metropolitan Bishop took to office as mere quest but the archdeacon was firmly established as the real power in the Nazarene community.
CATHOLIC CONTACT AND INVOLVEMENT:
During 15th century, the Portuguese expeditor – Vasco da Gama arrived in India. This period was occasioned with conflicts of control of Keralla by Saint Thomas Community and the Rajas of Cochin, Codun and other small kingdoms in the area.
To protect the intergrity and existence of the Saint Thomas Church, it embraced the Portuguese and eventually formed ally with them. The Portuguese though showed much interest on the spice trade but wanted to plant their Bellicose form of Christianity in the territory.
The Portuguese had a treaty called the “Padroado Real” with the Roman Catholic Pope which conferred upon the Portuguese authority certain rights over ecclesiastical issues in foreign territories they conquered.
Based on this treaty, the Portuguese established a colonial government in Goa and set a Latin Catholic Church hierarchy under the Archbishop of Goa and toiled to place the Saint Thomas Church under his authority.
In 1522, the Metropolitan Mar Jacob that represent the Church of the East died, Schism arose in the saint Thomas community and such brought division in which one group entered into communion with Catholic Church of Rome which sent a Bishop to them.
The Portuguese sought authority to hold grip to the Saint Thomas Church and thereby cut off relationship between the community and both the church of the East and the Roman Catholic Church.
In 1575, the Portuguese legislated that non of the Patriarchs could send representative to India without Portuguese’s confirmation.
CONTEXT FOR CONTROL:
In 1599, the last Eastern backed Metropolitan Abraham died and the Roman backed Archbishop of Goa secured submission of Archdeacon George that worked with the Metropolitan.
During that period, the Archdeacon George was the highest officer of the native Saint Thomas Church and with his covenant with the Archbishop of Goa, a synod of Diamper was convened which changed many liturgical and ecclesiastical structure of the Saint Thomas Church.
The Synod of Diaper brought all parishes under the Archbishop, made laws condemning various forms of social customs that were held by all Hindu groups such as the “untouchability” and ‘caste hierarchy”. The synod condemned indigenous liturgy, the Rite and all customs that appear unacceptable to the later church.
The new Latin centred Saint Thomas church rejected many texts that were formally used and ordered for their burning. Such books included
Meshiyach Yahzitere Yahmarabhi