People used to believe (or may still believe today) that Kings and religious leaders such as the Pope were ordained and speak as God himself. People were taught to believe that ONLY Kings and/or Priests were divine and right next to God, having God’s authority, infallibility and power.
No one could question these God figures, disagree with them, or have a different opinion, much less have a different religious belief or attend a different church. No one could have a direct relationship with God, much less talk with God, without these intervening hierarchical top down, rich and powerful figures. Payments for sin had to made to the church, or one would go to Hell forever.
Back then, everyone KNEW and accepted the well established religious and scientific fact that the Earth was flat, and the sun revolved around the stationary Earth, which was only 2,000 years old. Anyone disagreeing with this was declared a heretic, jailed, and/or put to death by fire or stoning.
via Quaker George Fox; Visionary Leader Followed Path Less Traveled, Taught That Continuing Revelation, Freedom, Intuition, Truth, Inner Light Is Universal Among All People, All Religions, All Belief Systems | A Green Road Journal