Through Faith in Jesus
You are mostly right. Just that the Eastern Orthodox are not offshoots of Rome, they are the descendants of the original churches in Asia Minor now known as Turkey.
The Great Schism was the final divide between the Eastern Orthodox church and the Western Catholic church in 1054 when the Pope of Rome and the Patriarch of Constantinople excommunicated each other. It was the final act in a long number of splits between the 2 from the very earliest days of the church.
They are more like a tree split down the middle to the very root that grows separate tree trunks off one root. Western Christianity had the Reformation. Eastern Christianity didn't. The Eastern Christian churches include the Marionites, the Coptics and the Orthodox as the main 3.
The earliest church fathers were fuming with anger, writing about the bishop of Rome taking power over the other churches when Jerusalem was still in place before the expulsion by Rome in 70 AD.
The problem of Rome is interesting because the Roman church was pretty uneducated, but very proud of being Rome of the Roman Empire, and as the city Rome was the head of Rome, they felt they should be the head of the church, not Jerusalem which was led by James the brother of our Lord, and not any of the churches of Asia Minor (Turkey) founded by Paul and addressed by Jesus via John in Revelation written about 90 AD.
Paul wrote directly to the Romans in 56 or 57 AD shortly after Nero came to power. He was writing from Corinth on his 3rd missionary journey.
Paul does a lot of basic teaching in Romans and he is very clear on antisemitism which seems to be cropping up. Rome continued to have problems. It's been a while since I read the bits in the early church fathers but I clearly remember one of them speaking of one of the bishops of Rome AFTER JOHN'S death so this was around 100 AD or so. Apparently the bishop of that time said some stuff that (I think it was Irenaeus but I might be thinking of 2 separate instances) was furious about and said John would have tossed him out of the church for that.
Rome typically decided that it had supremacy over all the Empire very early on but the Empire split into 2 --the east and the west. That split was finalized in 385 AD and the Eastern side called Byzantium was dominant while the Western side known as Rome fell into chaos as the various invasions from illiterate gangs and tribes took place over the centuries.
The Roman church continued to make alliances with the invaders and kept it's religious dominance in the West while the East continued with a general orderly succession of power.
The Eastern side was headquartered in Constantinople, and the main cathedral and heart of the church was located there -- the Hagia Sophia was built as a headquarters for the church. The Syrian and Greek Orthodox churches had their own groups, but the big head overall was in the Byzantine Empire, located in the capital of Constantinople.
Since this side of the church was rooted in the churches of Asia Minor, and this was a big part of Paul's ministry and efforts they assumed that they, not Rome should have the final authority.
And it all came to a head when the 2 leaders (Rome vs Constantinople) excommed each other. https://www.britannica.com/event/East-West-Schism-1054
After that the western leg of the Empire even launched crusades in which they tried to sack Constantinople and rape and pillage the people. Popes will be popes! On their way to "liberate" Jerusalem from the Muslim hordes, a little stopover on the Bosphorus to rape and pillage some Christians, followed by the Jews in Jerusalem and everywhere while trying to boot the Muslims out of Jerusalem. Not a happy page in history books.
Things got worse just before Christopher Columbus sailed for America.
In 1453 AD the Ottoman Turkish Army broke thru and captured Constantinople. They had multiple assaults in the years leading up to the fall of the Eastern leg of the Empire, but the West refused to aid and assist the East.
So what happened next is that a flood of refugees came out. To the west (they settled in Rome and elsewhere bringing the ancient scrolls and library contents with them, launching the Renaissance) and to the north where back in 988 Byzantium (the name of the eastern leg of the Roman empire) sent missionaries north to Russia. So some fled to the mission outposts and new believers in Russia forming the Russian Orthodox church there.
The ones who went north, really established the Russian Orthodox church AND THE NAME TSAR which is a Russianized form of the word Caesar.
Much like Germany using the name Kaiser.
So now you can see how both eastern and western churches grew up alongside each other and kind of scary, how the name Caesar never really left the east or the west. Tsars and Kaisers were the long distant descendants in spirit if not in flesh of the ancient Roman Caesars.
And how both East and West have a similar problem with traditions linked to the really early churches which fossilized into the rock hard fortresses of tradition that created the Papacy and Roman Catholicism as well as the Patriarchs of the Eastern Orthodoxy.
Babylon invaded the church, and has never left.
Caesars continued to the first world war.
Israel came back to the land following that Balfour declaration that came about BECAUSE of the first world war.
I'm stunned at the way God has moved thru history to bring them back. God's timepiece. Eastern and Western legs of Rome. The church splintered as Babylon but remaining the single unified body of believers that are joined thru the Holy Spirit, and not thru denominational boundaries.
Back to the OP, @Hidden that is a wonderful insight.
So here's Babylon, here's the Caesars and here's the world getting ready for the final 7 years.
athenasius, thank you so much for taking the time to explain and bring out more detailed history about this! This brings additional clarity and bigger picture in my mind, where reading about the now separated churches didn't lend to that more complete historical picture. I believe I'll print this out to refer to.
God bless you sister, you and so many others here add so much to our fellowship here.