I'm still at it over on the Catholic Answers forums, so I haven't had a chance to post much this week over here. The discussion is found here. I didn't get in to it until many pages in. That being said, there's probably much better stuff to be reading than trudging through a long discussion thread. In fact, my time in this discussion is almost over, as I have to concentrate on putting material together for other projects. Of course, it will probably be claimed I ran away, or something like that, but you'll notice I've been answering his every line thus far.
Here though, is a recent snippet:
Originally Posted by raumzeitmc2:Now you speak of the "proclamation of the gospel, and dedication to the authority of the Scriptures." Well, just what is the "gospel" in your opinion?
In Biblical terms,
"For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something of which to boast, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute sin.”
In other words, Christ has paid the penalty for my sin, I do not need an indulgence. My righteousness is the perfect righteousness of Christ, given to me as a gift. My perfect works are Christ’s works, given to me as a gift.
Originally Posted by raumzeitmc2: you really haven't told me what the gospel is yet. So let rephrase the question: We know that Christ preached the gospel, so what then was it that he preached? What was the essence of his message, his gospel?
Your question demonstrates a fundamental distinction between us. The Gospel is more than the words of Christ in red lettering. The Bible was written by the Holy Spirit. In its entirety it is God's infallible word and proclamation of Christ. Christ in fact notes the entire Old Testament was about Him. So, when I approach the question of how one is made right with God, I go to that part of the Bible that addresses that issue. The Holy Spirit has given the church the book of Romans as a systematic treatment of how one is made right with God. The words of Jesus aren't somehow more important than the words of Paul: both are the word of God, the word of the Holy Spirit. If Christ had given a detailed explanation of justification and sanctification, I would turn to those passages, but he did not. The Holy Spirit used Paul to do this, and Paul's words and the red words of Jesus are in harmony, because both are God's word.