Did Early Christians Practice Disfellowshipping?

English historian Edward Gibbon says that early Christians at 'the close of the third century' did disfellowship. [1] The Jehovah's Witnesses use this information to explain why they disfellowship members. Watchtower April 15, 1988, 'Discipline That Can Yield Peaceable Fruit'

It is interesting that the Jehovah's Witnesses support the doctrine of disfellowshipping because according to Edward Gibbon it was practiced by early Christians who lived at the end of the third century. However they reject pagan customs and traditions during the same time period in Christian history.

If you read everything Edward Gibbon wrote about early Christians from the end of the first century to the twelfth century and beyond, you will notice that Christians became more and more 'apostate' after the death of Jesus. In other words, traditions and beliefs became further removed from what Jesus really taught.

Read more disfellowshipping and apostate teachings that influenced the early Christian church immediately after the death of Jesus.

1. Historian Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire 1776.