Apostolic Tradition

So, homiletics is complete (my first B – not happy).  The classes now focus on liturgics and church music, both of which are completely fascinating.  In the process of reading about the apostolic tradition, it occurs to me – and isn’t part of the assignment on which I only have a maximum of 300 words to write) that Christ had 12 apostles.  There were many schools of thought from the time Christ spent here, each focusing on different things.  He left us the Holy Spirit to guide us, and yet, the Church (capitalized as the Catholic Church kind of took over the western world for quite a long period of time) focused on a monepiscopate (On The Apostolic Tradition, 2001, Stewart-Sykes), a singular source from which over a thousand years of Church history, liturgy and tradition followed.

Why did we do that?  I think it eventually got straightened out by Luther and Calvin and the rest of the Reformers, but why would we narrow things down to one path, when Christ left us with 12, each going to different places, cultures, having traditions of their own, which would obviously affect the way in which people worshiped.  I think Paul had a lot to do with how things were organized.  And the fact that he did so obviously helped the spread of Christianity, but what would Christianity look like if he hadn’t reigned in practices he thought shouldn’t be included in the religion?  Would we now be more or less unified than we currently are?

I think it would be safe to say that Christ brought us a way of life, but Paul brought us a religion.  The question is, does the religion reflect the way of life?