Concerning Jesus’ successors, The Roman Popes were not the legitimate successors of Jesus. Hadrat Khalifatul-Masih IV ra wrote:
There were fundamental differences of opinion between Paul and James the Righteous. While James looked after the Jerusalem Church, Paul was preaching in the West, particularly to the(Christianity: a Journey from Facts to Fiction, p. 132)
gentiles. The Western Church evolved along Pauline doctrinal lines, whereas the Church in Jerusalem developed along monotheistic teachings.
It was not obligatory on the followers of Jesus in the East to follow his so-called successors in the west. Those who accepted Jesus in the East would have considered the doctrines of the Roman Papacy as(Deliverance from the Cross, p. 93)
heretic, and so they would never have followed them.
Jesus as is believed to have appointed someone to look after his flock in the area of Jerusalem before his departure towards the East. This is similar to how Moses as appointed Aaron as to look after his people in his absence (Surah al-A‘raf, 7:143), and how the Holy Prophetsas would always appoint someone to look after Medina in his absence. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Book 64, Hadith 438)
We can infer that each time Jesus as finished his preaching in an area, he appointed someone to look after his flock there before migrating further East.
Concerning the preservation of Jesus’ history, Hadrat Khalifatul- Masih IV rta explained the reasons for this apparent discrepancy between his history in the East and West in the following points:
There is no independent evidence of Jesus having ever existed in the West, not in Roman records, or Jewish records, or any other independent records. The earliest religious record of him in the West is found about 30 years after the attempted crucifixion. However, there is independent evidence of Jesus having lived in the east. This evidence is found in the Puranas, and other historic records quoted in Jesus in India.
The reason religious records of Jesus are not clearly found in the East is that the history of Jesus as became mixed with the history of Buddha as. In some places, the stories attributed to Buddha as resemble the life of Jesus so much that Christian scholars have even said that Jesus must have traveled to India before his mission in the West.
Also, it has often happened in history that a people accepted a religion so completely that little record of the previous religion is found. One example is that of the German people. Their forced conversion to Christianity was so complete that people have little awareness of their previous religion. Since Jesus as spent more time in the East, where he was also accepted by people, he was able to prepare his followers for the coming of Islam so well that they fully embraced it when it came. In the areas where his teachings spread, Buddhism vanished with the coming of Islam, and in the
Another reason why the history of Jesus as in the East was not carefully preserved is that:
The early Indians never had any scruples about recording history objectively.(Jesus in India, p. 87)
However, evidence is found in a tribe of Afghanistan recorded in Among the Dervishes who refer to themselves as Christian Muslims. They claim to have accepted Jesus when he passed through their area, and later they accepted Islam.