Thursday, December 02, 2010

Good Morning Pope Starshine, part 2

Why do popes write the things they do? It stands to reason that you don’t work all your life to grow up and be pope, just to say things and have them be ignored. No, you want to be pope so you can command obedience!

Pius XII, himself a pope (who knew the difference between an ex cathedra pronouncement and an ordinary one, because he had done both, only our fusion into unity with him, makes us bearers of the promise.” (33) This goes far beyond the Protestant notion of Union with Christ. That union is accomplished through the Holy Spirit – and the New Man.

But fast forward to July 2009, in an address in Aosta, Italy, Benedict
again, as pope, cites Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and his pantheistic vision, far beyond what was said in “Introduction to Christianity” and claims that “the cosmos becomes a living host”:
“Let Your Church offer herself to You as a living and holy sacrifice”. This request, addressed to God, is made also to ourselves. It is a reference to two passages from the Letter to the Romans. We ourselves, with our whole being, must be adoration and sacrifice, and by transforming our world, give it back to God. The role of the priesthood is to consecrate the world so that it may become a living host, a liturgy: so that the liturgy may not be something alongside the reality of the world, but that the world itself shall become a living host, a liturgy. This is also the great vision of Teilhard de Chardin: in the end we shall achieve a true cosmic liturgy, where the cosmos becomes a living host. And let us pray the Lord to help us become priests in this sense, to aid in the transformation of the world, in adoration of God, beginning with ourselves.
In other words, “we are the world.”

Paul’s letters frequently follow the pattern of theology --> application, and his letter to the Romans follows this same pattern. Here is the citation of the selection that the pope is quoting:
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
Schreiner, in his commentary, does not see pantheism in this text. “Paul is not merely saying that [these] sacrifices are spiritual in nature. His point is that it is eminently reasonable, given the mercies of God, for believers to dedicate themselves wholly to God.” (Commentary on Romans, 644-645). “The worship described does not relate to public assemblies but to the yielding of one’s whole life to God in the concrete reality of everyday existence.”

I’ve written about this, too, in a post entitled The Real Body of Christ.
Here, Ratzinger openly embraces the Platonic concept of “body” and rejects Scriptural meaning as he openly states, “Communion means the fusion of existences. Just as in the taking of nourishment the body assimilates foreign matter to itself, and is thereby enabled to live, in the same way my “I” is “assimilated” to that of Jesus, it is made similar to him in an exchange that increasingly breaks through the lines of division.”

Now, it could not be more clear, in analyzing the texts of Paul’s letters, that this is in no way what he is talking about. But the Roman self-infatuation, in its desires to perpetuate its grandiose claims about itself, effectively repeats the promise of Satan: “You will be like God.”
I’ll refer you to that link for more about this topic, but for now, it should be enough to provide a biblical picture of our future:
See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.”

Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. And they sang a new song, saying:

“You are worthy to take the scroll
and to open its seals,
because you were slain,
and with your blood you purchased for God
persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.

You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God,
and they will reign on the earth.”

Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. 12 In a loud voice they were saying:

“Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and praise!”

I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.
It will be time for Lewis’s “Great Dance”. No pantheism allowed.

160 comments:

John Bugay said...

Hi Viisaus, I'm glad you're liking this. For a while I've hoped to get into "Called to Communion."

Of course, you are aware that this is a "DA-Free" blog. No doubt the folks over there are sure that this is because we cannot stand up before their superior logic and reasoning skills, much less the ultimate truth of their religion.

And of course, they all are right: in modern times only Pius XII has actually "taught" anything ex cathedra and infallibly, and so every other pope may do or say or adopt anything they want, personally, and still be above reproach. The Roman system is designed to deflect all criticism that way. So their defense is built-in and effortless.

I'm waiting for the "wave" of homosexual priests-turned-bishops to get into leadership positions in the Roman Church. I'm sure we can expect more "above reproach"-style statements to come out that these guys still won't have to defend.

It's a great life.

James Swan said...

No doubt the folks over there are sure that this is because we cannot stand up before their superior logic and reasoning skills, much less the ultimate truth of their religion.

If I recall, the main point of contention currently under dispute is tracking the movement of planets and the sun through the solar system. I assume your posts John will have to wait until this is resolved before the "superior logic and reasoning skills" is directed toward you.

John Bugay said...

Whew, a reprieve!

James Swan said...

OK, let's not go there.

thx.

John Bugay said...

I am just grateful that these guys can have a true Visible Shepherd -- a source of Unity, after all, who nevertheless is free to be an individual who can have 10 children by 3 mistresses -- heck, who could be a practicing homosexual (who "could and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection"), and yet, could still sit in the Chair of Peter and pronounce that Mary is the Co-Redeemer with Christ.

Now that's a religion that makes it all worthwhile.

steelikat said...

Well it's hard to understand what he's saying, but I don't think he's saying this:

"Paul has been incomprehensible prior to this modern understanding."

Notice he says "Paul has been rendered comprehensible again." In light of what other phenomenologist theologians (in particular the previous Pope when he was a theologian) have said, I think what he means is something like "Paul was comprehensible to western man, but modern twentieth century man has a fundamentally different world view that makes new kinds of explanations necessary.

Of course that still seems like nonsense but it is a less radical claim and in the context of other things he and The previous pope said it is probably a better explanation.

The Typical Protestant notion of union with Christ, meaning what Protestant laymen mean by "union with Christ" and what they are taught, is surely inadequate. In my experience, they have no such notion at all. They see the resurrection as nothing much more profound than a continuation of the life they are leaving here, but without sin, sickness, or death.

The Ratzinger quotes are glippity gloppity gobbledegook, so they don't help that much but to be fair he does seem to be indicating that Chardin is only PARTLY right, which gives him plausible deniability in regards to pantheism

John Bugay said...

Steelikat, you always seem to look for the positive things and I guess that is a good thing. But as I said, I think that if you look more closely at what Roman Catholicism actually is, you will be much less inclined to find anything good there.

However, I disagree with you that he thinks Chardin "is only partly right." His only criticism is that "the vocabulary employed is rather too biological." One gets the impression that if Chardin had used language that were somewhat less biological, then all would be well with this "comprehensible" portrayal of what Paul was saying.

The Typical Protestant notion of union with Christ, meaning what Protestant laymen mean by "union with Christ" and what they are taught, is surely inadequate.

I don't know if I'm in a position to make that statement (or even to agree with it), but I do know that Roman Catholicism takes it in a different direction than Protestants do. They in fact rely heavily on the notion that "the Church" is in fact the "ongoing Incarnation" of Christ, a sort of pantheistic extension of Christ's humanity (if not his Divinity).

Michael Horton addresses this in his works "Covenant and Salvation" and also "People and Place" in a very thorough, but difficult way. But those are two works that I think need some sort of translation that will be meaningful for "Protestant laymen."

steelikat said...

John,

Don't get me wrong, it seems like doctrinal seediness to me. (thanks, Viisaus for that great phrase). All I'm saying is that we shouldn't exaggerate or put words in Ratzinger's mouth (or anyone). Also what I said about Ratzinger's theology, that it is essentially the idea that while the truth doesn't change, it is necessary to present that truth in new ways for modern man, is attested by theologians (I cannot evaluate their analysis for myself because when I tried to read that stuff I get confused and fall asleep) Ratzinger seems to me to be attracted to Chardin's pantheism but does not want to take the plunge and go all the way, so to speak. Of course he shouldn't take that plunge but also we shouldn't even be attracted to it or try to integrate it with Christianity. Aristotle's and Plato's pagan philosophy can be used to help us understand Christianity but these modern philosophies are incompatible with it.

John Bugay said...

Steelikat, I'm glad that Viisaus is providing you with, uh, great phraseology :-)

Ratzinger seems to me to be attracted to Chardin's pantheism but does not want to take the plunge and go all the way, so to speak.

Well, he's not taking the plunge insofar as he's not defining some new doctrine. But he's definitely lending his weight to all of the pantheistic tendencies that can be seen in the RCC, and he's even praying that this vision becomes a reality.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Pope BXVI's quotations of Teilhard de Chardin don't enhance his conservative Catholic credentials.

In fact, they rather diminish it.

John Bugay said...

Pope BXVI's quotations of Teilhard de Chardin don't enhance his conservative Catholic credentials. In fact, they rather diminish it.

I studied the French language in high school and college, and I always thought it was a bit clunky. But "Teilhard de Chardin" -- that really makes the best use of the French language.

So I'm sure that whatever of Benedict is being diminished with these "conservative Catholics" that you're referring to, he's gaining in the cool factor, getting to say that cool French name, "Teilhard de Chardin". Even in a German accent, I'm sure that just flows off the tongue.

James Swan said...

Viisaus said...

Hi there- I ended up deleting a few of your comments- not because you said anything wrong, but because there are particular Romanist apologetics blogs I'd rather not discuss.

Leo said...

Perhaps my comments will be deleted, but they will be made nonetheless. Pope Benedict XVI is not a pantheist and your caricaturizations of him are offensive to say the least. To disagree with him is one thing, but to make fun of a spiritual leader who is highly regarded by many devout Christians as well as people of good will, is unconscionable.

What the Holy Father is trying to explain is the oneness that is experienced when we share in the life of the Blessed Trinity. Please humor me and allow me to explain.

1. We believe that we become adopted sons and daughters of God, which makes us family members.

2. When Jesus prayed," "I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me.", this is what He was asking.

3. We believe that we are destined to share in Christ's divinity, just He humbled Himself to share in our humanity.

4. Those in heaven are no longer capable of sin as they are truly one with God. The divine life in which we share requires our complete submission in order for the union to take place, yet is what gives us eternal life.

5.We are not just separate beings in heaven, just carrying on with a perfected body. We receive a union with God that even the angels do not possess.

John Bugay said...

Hi Leo -- My "caricaturizations" of him are primarily to cite his own words.

There are lots of metaphors used as to what is promised to Christians. I've written about some of that here:

http://reformation500.wordpress.com/2010/04/26/the-real-body-of-christ/

I've provided some exegesis on key passages that describe what Paul means, for example, by "the new man" and "the body of Christ."

I've also put some of what Ratzinger says into some context as well:

Those who want to suggest that “the Church” is somehow the “ongoing incarnation of Christ” ignore the fact that Christ ascended. Having “Christ everywhere” (whether in the Thomistic view of the “sacramental” presence of Christ in the Eucharist” or in some kind of “ongoing incarnation”) ignore, in Calvin’s words, his “specificity as a particular man. Christ everywhere really means that Jesus of Nazareth is nowhere...”

“In other words, just when the gospel has taught us to think of salvation in the most concrete terms, as an act of God in the flesh and for the flesh, the story of Jesus is turned against itself. His humanity is betrayed and marginalized after all. (People and Place 7-8).

“It is the church’s recurring temptation to look away from the absence—toward a false presence, often substituting itself as an extension of Christ’s incarnation and reconciling work—that distracts it from directing the world’s attention to the Parousia in the future. Yet a church that does not acknowledge Christ’s absence is no longer focused on Christ but is tempted to idolatrous substations,” namely, considering that “Christ IS the Church.”

Christ is still God, and that God that he is puts him, even though he has the flesh of a man, so infinitely far above us that for anything human to consider itself “Christ” is nothing other than an idolatrous substitution.

Leo said...

"Those who want to suggest that “the Church” is somehow the “ongoing incarnation of Christ” ignore the fact that Christ ascended. Having “Christ everywhere” (whether in the Thomistic view of the “sacramental” presence of Christ in the Eucharist” or in some kind of “ongoing incarnation”) ignore, in Calvin’s words, his “specificity as a particular man. Christ everywhere really means that Jesus of Nazareth is nowhere...”

Well, no, not exactly true...did not Paul say that it was not he who lived but Jesus in him? We are all meant to become 'other Christs' to the world in order to transform it.

Jesus took on our humanity to transform and sanctify it. When Jesus meant that He wants us to be one in Him the same as He is in the Father, He was not kidding. We cannot become one until we are truly perfected and we are called to be so in this life.

Calvin saw a separation precisely because he was separated by his disobedience. He reported on what he saw regarding himself and needed to justify it. It is no different when those living in sin cannot tolerate hearing that it is sinful, since it reawakens their consciences.

Jesus left Himself for us in the Eucharist in order to supernaturally transform us into likenesses of Himself. When He walked the earth, He healed mostly by touching. He made the impure pure, and reversed the concept of uncleanness.

He also was specific in saying that 'those who come to believe in me through them(the apostles and their successors, i.e. the Church)' Note that He did not simply say 'those who come to believe in me' and ask for them to become one with Him...

Leo said...

"Christ is still God, and that God that he is puts him, even though he has the flesh of a man, so infinitely far above us that for anything human to consider itself “Christ” is nothing other than an idolatrous substitution."

John, did not Jesus also say that '
whatsoever we do for the least of His brothers, we do unto Him?'

We are to see Christ in EVERY person, and to love them as we love Christ. We are ALL created in His image and He dwells in all to at least some degree.

John Bugay said...

Leo, there is a huge difference between being indwelt by the Holy Spirit and having the righteousness of Christ imputed to you, and being ontologically changed and becoming "fused into" God [Ratzinger's words].

The Scriptures in no way support the latter.

Leo said...

"Leo, there is a huge difference between being indwelt by the Holy Spirit and having the righteousness of Christ imputed to you, and being ontologically changed and becoming "fused into" God [Ratzinger's words].

The Scriptures in no way support the latter."

John,

Really? Jesus prayed for us to become one just as He and the Father are one. He prayed to be in us and for us to be in Him. We really do get adopted into the Trinity. Perhaps 'fused' is a different way of saying it, but we share in the life of the Trinity.

Actually, we are also ontologically changed. We become a new creation and this is not just imputed to us. This is perhaps one of the greatest differences between what we believe and what the Reformers taught.

Michael Gormley said...

Dear John,

The Catholic Bible

As Catholics were responsible for writing the New Testament (under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit), the Catholic Church doesn't "interpret" the Bible. We explain it.
Protestants can only "interpret", because they are not the author (guided by the Holy Spirit), and therefore, can only guess at the possible meaning of a chapter, passage or phrase, just as anyone can only guess at any author's intentions in any other book.

As the author, the Catholic Church is the only proper authority to consult in matters pertaining to the Bible.

zipper778 said...

Michael, when did the Bible become The Word of the Roman Catholic Church?

Turretinfan said...

"As the author, the Catholic Church is the only proper authority to consult in matters pertaining to the Bible."

a) Mr. Gormley - God (not your church) is the author of the Bible.

b) You yourself were recently quoting "Protestants" talking about Matthew 16.

-TurretinFan

Michael Gormley said...

zipper778 said...
Michael, when did the Bible become The Word of the Roman Catholic Church?

By virtue of this divinely-appointed authority, the Catholic Church determined the canon of Scripture (what books belong in the Bible) at the end of the fourth century.

We therefore believe in the Scriptures on the authority of the Catholic Church. After all, nothing in Scripture tells us what Scriptures are inspired, what books belong in the Bible, or that Scripture is the final authority on questions concerning the Christian faith.

Instead, the Bible says that the Church, not the Scriptures, is the pinnacle and foundation of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15) and the final arbiter on questions of the Christian faith (Matthew 18:17).

Michael Gormley said...

Turretinfan said...
You yourself were recently quoting "Protestants" talking about Matthew 16.


If Jesus didn't mean to make Peter the Prince of the Apostles, the very first Christians sure did misunderstand that! Likewise, if Jesus didn't mean that the Eucharist is His Body and Blood, not mere symbols, then the very first Christians misunderstood that too!

PeaceByJesus said...

It is true that Moses was infallible in writing the Pentateuch (i doubt most RC scholars believe that he did) as were the apostles in adding to the Scriptures.

But the authority of apostles who added new doctrines to that which was written was not based on the premise that they would be assuredly infallible whenever they defined faith and morals to the universal church, much less taught that the church would be because it declared it was. Rather, "by manifestation of truth" (2Cor. 4:2) they persuaded men, "reasoning out of the Scriptures" (Acts 17:2; 28:23) with a holiness, faith and teaching that conformed to and complemented that which was prior established as from God, (2Cor. 6:1-10; Acts 17:11) and which was accompanied by manifest supernatural attestation, (Rm. 15:18,9; 2Cor. 12:12) which is how it all began. God supernaturally worked in Abraham's life, and he and his holy faith became established as of God, and so forth.

The problem with Rome is that she essentially adds to the Scriptures by making her nebulous oral tradition equal to the Scriptures, and effectively presumes supremacy over them, while certain "infallible" teachings - including her claim to assured infallibility - lack Scriptural and Divine attestation. And she does not simply claim to be able to teach infallibly, but claims a formulaic assured infallibility, by which she renders her declaration of infallibility to be infallible, as well as her claim for Scriptural basis. Thus according to her interpretation only her interpretation can be correct in any conflict.

If the ground opened up and swallowed any who opposed her then that might allow such a claim, but this is not the case, and the implicit trust in her is not warrant, and any unity resulting from that is inferior in quality, if not quantity, to that is the result of Berean type hearts and its method or ascertaining truth.

It may be argued that this renders fallible human reasoning infallible, yet this is not was 2Pt. 1:20,21 censures as regards interpretation, and texts such as 1Jn. 5:13 sanction it in obtaining assurance, but it rests upon Scripture being assuredly infallible, which objective source is alone affirmed to be, while any degree of surety claimed by an advocate SS is contingent upon demonstrable Scriptural warrant, using principles of doctrinal exegesis it manifests.

PeaceByJesus said...

It is true that Moses was infallible in writing the Pentateuch (i doubt most RC scholars believe that he did) as were the apostles in adding to the Scriptures.

But the authority of apostles who added new doctrines to that which was written was not based on the premise that they would be assuredly infallible whenever they defined faith and morals to the universal church, much less taught that the church would be because it declared it was. Rather, "by manifestation of truth" (2Cor. 4:2) they persuaded men, "reasoning out of the Scriptures" (Acts 17:2; 28:23) with a holiness, faith and teaching that conformed to and complemented that which was prior established as from God, (2Cor. 6:1-10; Acts 17:11) and which was accompanied by manifest supernatural attestation, (Rm. 15:18,9; 2Cor. 12:12) which is how it all began. God supernaturally worked in Abraham's life, and he and his holy faith became established as of God, and so forth.

The problem with Rome is that she essentially adds to the Scriptures by making her nebulous oral tradition equal to the Scriptures, and effectively presumes supremacy over them, while certain "infallible" teachings - including her claim to assured infallibility - lack Scriptural and Divine attestation. And she does not simply claim to be able to teach infallibly, but claims a formulaic assured infallibility, by which she renders her declaration of infallibility to be infallible, as well as her claim for Scriptural basis. Thus according to her interpretation only her interpretation can be correct in any conflict.

2 B contd.

PeaceByJesus said...

Pt. 2

If the ground opened up and swallowed any who opposed her then that might allow such a claim, but this is not the case, and the implicit trust in her is not warrant, and any unity resulting from that is inferior in quality, if not quantity, to that is the result of Berean type hearts and its method or ascertaining truth.

It may be argued that this renders fallible human reasoning infallible, yet this is not was 2Pt. 1:20,21 censures as regards interpretation, and texts such as 1Jn. 5:13 sanction it in obtaining assurance, but it rests upon Scripture being assuredly infallible, which objective source is alone affirmed to be, while any degree of surety claimed by an advocate SS is contingent upon demonstrable Scriptural warrant, using principles of doctrinal exegesis it manifests.

John Bugay said...

Hi PBJ, welcome to Beggars All. Thanks for your analysis here.

I don't have much time to respond at this thread, but I've posted a few posts in the meantime. Check out the main site for more information about what we're all about.

PeaceByJesus said...

Michel, your assertion is an old but invalid contention. It has prior been established here that not only did RCC not infallibly define all of what constituted sacred Scripture until over 1400 after the last book was penned, but that it was not exactly the same canon (2Esdras issue)

In addition, it is not councicular decrees that established the writings in the Bible as being Scriptures, as helpful as such decrees can be, but like a true man of God, it was and is due to its unique enduring qualities and the Divine attestation given it. The best a council can do is ratify the best seller list of those whose lives conform to what was established as from God, and His attestation. The God of Abraham was manifest prior to Moses speaking in His name, and as argued above, the Lord made it quite evident those who added doctrines were from Him. (Praying to the departed was not one of these teachings).

As a man and writings became progressively established as Divine they became the standard by which newer revelations, or those purporting to be such, were examined and substantiated by. (Is. 8:20; Mt. 22:29-45; Lk. 24:27,44; Jn. 5:39,42; Acts 17:2,11; 18:28; 28:23; Heb. 1, etc.) And by which Jesus reproved those who presumed to teach doctrines which were not. (Mk. 7:7-13)

While it was thru the church that the fullness of what constituted Scripture was realized, most writings therein were already established as such by Jesus time, without an infallible magisterium.

PeaceByJesus said...

As for the Church, not the Scriptures, being the pinnacle and foundation of the truth, (1 Timothy 3:15) it is telling that sola eccelsia - that the church alone is the supreme authority on faith and morals, as it decides the extent of Divine revelation and its infallible meaning - is extrapolated out of a verse that simply says the church "[the] support (stulos) and hedraiōma (from hedraioō, stayed, ground, stable, settled, which only occurs here) [of] the truth."

This hardly warrants the idea that the Roman Catholic church is the assuredly infallible source and judge of truth, rather than saying that the church, defined as only consisting of born again believers - and thus is manifested as the "church of the living [not dead] God - supports the truth, and is of the truth, is grounded on it, or is the steward of it.

All of which is Scriptural, but both the writers as well as the stewards of Holy Writ are to be subject to it, versus claiming a formulaic infallibility that renders all they proclaim as infallible, including its claim to be Scriptural, because it spoke on faith and morals to the whole church. When the church did so in the Bible, (Acts 15) we know that is was as it is contained therein, and which manifests that this teaching was wholly Scriptural. Rome itself may and has taught infallible truth, as does Protestantism, but it is the basis for an assured status that is the issue.

Moreover, if you appeal to Scripture in seeking to establish sola ecclesia then that infers that the Scriptures are the superior authority. And what the Bible does not say is that all the church will teaches on faith and morals will be infallible; rather it teaches that the only objective source which is wholly inspired of God, and thus is assuredly infallible, are the Scriptures. (2Tim 3:16)



The kingdom of God, or the authenticity of a church, is not in word, that of men declaring they are, but in power, in attributes and Divine attestation which conforms to that which as established as from God by the same.(1Cor. 4:20) Of which i come short, especially in heart. Insofar as our eye be single, setting our affection on things above, not on things on the heart, which can be lawful things but which edify not, which our whole bodies be full of light. (Mt. 6:22)

John Bugay said...

PBJ, I've written about that very issue (1 Tim 3:15) -- the church [the local church of Ephesus in this case, I believe] supports the truth by it's good behavior.

That is, good behavior is not what saves; but in James-style, it is what provides "justification" of the truth -- it verifies the truth before men.

Michael Gormley said...

Dear PeaceByJesus,

We are Catholic and are Proud of it...

"Christian is my name, and Catholic my surname. The one designates me, while the other makes me specific. Thus am I attested and set apart... When we are called Catholics it is by this appellation that our people are kept apart from any heretical name."
Saint Pacian of Barcelona, Letter to Sympronian, 375 A.D..

"Always remain close to the Catholic Church, because it alone can give you true peace, since it alone possesses Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, the true Prince of Peace."
Blessed Padre Pio...

"It is because Christ is the sole canon of her preaching that the Church adheres so obstinately and so rigidly to His traditional message. It is for this reason that she can endure no modernism, no fraternizing with the spirit of the age."
Karl Adam, The Spirit of Catholicism...

John Bugay said...

Michael Gormley, I hope you've noticed that you've equivocated on the word "Catholic." Note is the Pacian quote, "Catholic is my surname ... one designates me, the other makes me specific..." In reality, today's "Catholic Church," "Catholic" is not the surname, it is the whole ball of wax.

The same is true for the word church. If you were to do a study of the word "church," you would note that it meant something slightly different in the year 375, compared with what it means now.

the Church adheres so obstinately and so rigidly to His traditional message ...

It is Rome, in fact, that has changed from "His traditional message" that Newman had to come up with his theory of "Development." It is precisely because he could not be sure that the Roman Church wouldn't change down the road, that C.S. Lewis would not become Roman Catholic.

You are not really living in touch with the reality of the situation.

Turretinfan said...

"If Jesus didn't mean to make Peter the Prince of the Apostles, the very first Christians sure did misunderstand that! Likewise, if Jesus didn't mean that the Eucharist is His Body and Blood, not mere symbols, then the very first Christians misunderstood that too! "

The very first Christians were neither adherents to a papacy nor to transubstantiation. You tell me whether they misunderstood or not!

-TurretinFan

zipper778 said...

Michael said:

By virtue of this divinely-appointed authority, the Catholic Church determined the canon of Scripture (what books belong in the Bible) at the end of the fourth century.

I take it that you're somewhat ignorant of church history and having researched the rumors that go through Roman Catholic circles. Because if you had done research you would have realized that even the Roman Catholic Church admits that the canon was open, all the way to Trent. So, don't believe everything your friends tell you.

We therefore believe in the Scriptures on the authority of the Catholic Church. After all, nothing in Scripture tells us what Scriptures are inspired, what books belong in the Bible, or that Scripture is the final authority on questions concerning the Christian faith.

This is pretty much completely false.

Instead, the Bible says that the Church, not the Scriptures, is the pinnacle and foundation of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15) and the final arbiter on questions of the Christian faith (Matthew 18:17).

I also take it that you don't read the Bible in context a lot but instead just go with whatever Roman Catholic apologists tell you. Nice try, but ultimately you've missed my point. If the Bible is the Word of God, then man cannot contain it.

PeaceByJesus, very cool name!

Michael Gormley said...

zipper778 said...
Nice try, but ultimately you've missed my point.

Dear Zipper778,
When Protestantism was first formed in the 16th century, the reformers lost all Authority which they enjoyed in the Catholic Church. They therefore turned to the Bible as their 'sole rule of authority'.

Did Jesus Christ say that the Bible is the final authority on earth? No, He did not.

Jesus Christ said the final authority is the Church. See Matthew 18:15-18. The Church has the final authority to mitigate disputes, and to dispense the truth.

So maybe you should put a 'Zipper' on it (pun intended).

PeaceByJesus said...

Thanks for the well-come John. I am a former RC (w/ 2 uncles who were priests) of a devout family, but who was born again while still in Rome, after having been convicted by God of my lost state which resulted in a deep repentance and a publican type faith, resulting in my getting a Bible and listening to evang. preaching in my hungry to know how to please God. Which resulted in my understanding salvation was by grace, not merit of works, ala Trent, which faith i quickly affirmed in prayer to God. Not your usual conversion, but even nature seemed noe to me. I stayed for 6 more years, seeking to serve God as a lector and CDD teacher, but a greater surrender to Christ and service to Him resulted in my daring to ask if He would have me leave Rome for another church, which up here in the NE is rather sparse picking. But which prayer He quickly answered and which decision He has abundantly confirmed.

I am not moved to contend against Rome by any personal animosity, and seek to analyze things objectively.

I of been lurking for a while, and am not formally trained apologist, being a former truck driver high school graduate, but i have been a somewhat of a student in the school of Christ, though i have not learned obedience as i should have.

About the only forum i have debated much on is Free Republic (daniel1212) which (perhaps surprisingly) often has very extensive Cath. vs. Protestant debates. Of late i have been on Theology Web a little.

This blog has a lot of content, so much so that i included it in my custom search engine sites which i have at the bottom of http://peacebyjesus.witnesstoday.org.

Michael Gormley said...
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Michael Gormley said...

John Bugay said...
You are not really living in touch with the reality of the situation.

Dear John,
Let Him be Anathema.
Galatians 1:8-9

Anathema:
1Corinthians 16:22 "If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ,
let him be Anathema."

Anathema...
the meaning of...
'Let him be cursed, excluded from the kingdom of GOD. To be banned or excommunicated'.

Have you ever seen two Bible verses, John, back to back, which say essentially the same thing?
No? Well, here is a pair of them...

Galatians 1:8, "But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a Gospel to you other than that which we have preached to you, let him be Anathema."

Galatians 1:9, "As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone preach a Gospel to you other than that which you have received, let him be Anathema."

Now, why do you suppose St. Paul repeated himself in Galatians 1:8-9, John?

Why does anyone purposely repeat him or herself, except to drive home a very important point?
We humans are usually good at hearing, but are sometimes poor at listening.

St. Paul stressed the very important point, John, that if you do not preach the truth, you have separated yourself from the kingdom of GOD.

PeaceByJesus said...

Another borrowed argument.

Michael, the church does judge disputes, but you want to restrict Mt. 18:15-19 to Rome (and which is seen applied in 1Cor. 5, and discipline is an area Rome, among others, is very lax in) while the issue is upon what basis the authenticity of this church is established, and by what objective standard does it judge by.

If you choose to assuredly establish this church by Scripture, appealing to our human reasoning, then you are appealing to Scripture as the supreme objective authority, which is contrary to the premise of Rome, which teaches such assurance cannot be realized except by faith in the assuredly infallible magisterium, which claim disallows any debate we can provide that the claim of Rome fails Scriptural warrant.

If you choose history and an unbroken succession of popes, then you have popes who could never have remained even as church members, let alone be ordained and remain as popes, but you fall into the presumption of the Jews, who supposed historical pedigree established them.

However, as it is written, "God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham," and the authenticity of a true Jew and a true church is based upon Abrahamic type faith in the Biblical "gospel of the grace of God," (Acts 20:24b)

Which does not teach that believers merit graces needed for the attainment of eternal life, (Catechism of the Catholic church, Part 3, Life in Christ, Merit, 2010) that they have truly merited eternal life by those very works which have been done in God. (Trent, Chapter XVI; The Sixth Session Decree on justification, 1547)

It is by Scriptural faith that the church exists and has its members, (1Cor. 12:13) and by this faith it overcomes, (1Jn. 5:5) and its claim to be a true church, like that of a true man of God, is not by self-proclamation, but as said before, by Scriptural qualities; holiness and doctrine that conforms to the only objective source which is affirmed to be assuredly infallible, with the supernatural attestation, primary transformed lives, that shows it is the church of the living God, versus its institutionalized counterpart which teaches for doctrines the mere traditions of men.

It is therefore the Scriptures, which material source you appealed to, that authorize the church, and which enables it to judge righteousness judgment.

PeaceByJesus said...

Michael, the church does judge disputes, but you want to restrict Mt. 18:15-19 to Rome (and which is seen applied in 1Cor. 5, and discipline is an area Rome, among others, is very lax in) while the issue is upon what basis the authenticity of this church is established, and by what objective standard does it judge by.

If you choose to assuredly establish this church by Scripture, appealing to our human reasoning, then you are appealing to Scripture as the supreme objective authority, which is contrary to the premise of Rome, which teaches such assurance cannot be realized except by faith in the assuredly infallible magisterium, which claim disallows any debate we can provide that the claim of Rome fails Scriptural warrant.

If you choose history and an unbroken succession of popes, then you have popes who could never have remained even as church members, let alone be ordained and remain as popes, but you fall into the presumption of the Jews, who supposed historical pedigree established them.

However, as it is written, "God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham," and the authenticity of a true Jew and a true church is based upon Abrahamic type faith in the Biblical "gospel of the grace of God," (Acts 20:24b)

Which does not teach that believers merit graces needed for the attainment of eternal life, (Catechism of the Catholic church, Part 3, Life in Christ, Merit, 2010) that they have truly merited eternal life by those very works which have been done in God. (Trent, Chapter XVI; The Sixth Session Decree on justification, 1547)

It is by Scriptural faith that the church exists and has its members, (1Cor. 12:13) and by this faith it overcomes, (1Jn. 5:5) and its claim to be a true church, like that of a true man of God, is not by self-proclamation, but as said before, by Scriptural qualities; holiness and doctrine that conforms to the only objective source which is affirmed to be assuredly infallible, with the supernatural attestation, primary transformed lives, that shows it is the church of the living God, versus its institutionalized counterpart which teaches for doctrines the mere traditions of men.

It is therefore the Scriptures, which material source you appealed to, that authorize the church, and which enables it to judge righteousness judgment.

PeaceByJesus said...

Michael, the church does judge disputes, but you want to restrict Mt. 18:15-19 to Rome (and which is seen applied in 1Cor. 5, and discipline is an area Rome, among others, is very lax in) while the issue is upon what basis the authenticity of this church is established, and by what objective standard does it judge by.

If you choose to assuredly establish this church by Scripture, appealing to our human reasoning, then you are appealing to Scripture as the supreme objective authority, which is contrary to the premise of Rome, which teaches such assurance cannot be realized except by faith in the assuredly infallible magisterium, which claim disallows any debate we can provide that the claim of Rome fails Scriptural warrant.

If you choose history and an unbroken succession of popes, then you have popes who could never have remained even as church members, let alone be ordained and remain as popes, but you fall into the presumption of the Jews, who supposed historical pedigree established them.

However, as it is written, "God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham," and the authenticity of a true Jew and a true church is based upon Abrahamic type faith in the Biblical "gospel of the grace of God," (Acts 20:24b)

Which does not teach that believers merit graces needed for the attainment of eternal life, (Catechism of the Catholic church, Part 3, Life in Christ, Merit, 2010) that they have truly merited eternal life by those very works which have been done in God. (Trent, Chapter XVI; The Sixth Session Decree on justification, 1547)

2 B cntd.

PeaceByJesus said...

Pt. 2

It is by Scriptural faith that the church exists and has its members, (1Cor. 12:13) and by this faith it overcomes, (1Jn. 5:5) and its claim to be a true church, like that of a true man of God, is not by self-proclamation, but as said before, by Scriptural qualities; holiness and doctrine that conforms to the only objective source which is affirmed to be assuredly infallible, with the supernatural attestation, primary transformed lives, that shows it is the church of the living God, versus its institutionalized counterpart which teaches for doctrines the mere traditions of men.

It is therefore the Scriptures, which material source you appealed to, that authorize the church, and which enables it to judge righteousness judgment.

PeaceByJesus said...

Sorry for the triplicate post. It said it could not be processed because it was too much and so i did not know that it went thru anyway.

Michael Gormley said...

PeaceByJesus said...
If you choose to assuredly establish this church by Scripture, appealing to our human reasoning, then you are appealing to Scripture as the supreme objective authority, which is contrary to the premise of Rome..

Dear PeaceByJesus,
The Holy Spirit will not be subject to human reason.

This is the fundamental problem with Protestantism. The intellect becomes one’s compass for truth, instead of the Living Voice of the Holy Ghost.

The proper use of reason is to believe in and serve the Divine Revelation revealed by the Holy Ghost in the Church, not to criticize what is revealed endlessly until you satisfy your intellect.

The intellect is only perfected after it has accepted the divine truths that God reveals to it.

Turretinfan said...

Mr. Gormley:

There's Rome's double standard:

Human reason is a fine reason to accept Rome's claims, but not a fine reason to reject them.

Same goes for private judgment of Scripture.

Such nonsense. Do you see it through it yourself, or are you sincerely misled?

-TurretinFan

Michael Gormley said...

Turretinfan said...
Such nonsense. Do you see it through it yourself, or are you sincerely misled?

Dear Turretinfan,
You’re being defensive...what are your parameters?

PeaceByJesus said...

Mike, that is a typical ambiguous RC statement, but which effectively appeals to my fallible human reasoning (FHR) to convince me to belive in the Assuredly Infallible Magisterium (AIM) which is protected from the fallible nature of FHR when they speak according to their Infallibly Declared Formula (IDF) If they do say so themselves.

And yet apart from infallible teachings, like in evangelical churches (who actually show more unity in core values and doctrine) Catholics can disagree to varying degrees with non-infallible teachings, though who knows all of which ones are infallible.

However, I have already countered your foundational fallacy in my responses, which has only resulted in more reassertions which depend upon it.

The Divine inspiration of Scripture is affirmed by both of us, and which is affirmed to be assuredly infallible, but which appeals to human understanding for assurance, (1Jn. 5:13) and affirms being like a noble Berean to determine how know that he/she is listening to this nebulous "Living Voice of the Holy Ghost." and to which God provides other attestation which complements, not contradicts it.

But this means we affirm the core essentials we both concur on, as being truths revealed by the Holy Ghost to the Church, being well substantiated by the Scriptures, while contending against those who deny them, which is typically the result of effectively exalting the authority of mortal men and or an office above the Scriptures. And thus we also contend against those teaching of Rome that also commit the error of the Pharisees. Mk. 7:6-13)

While God Himself reasons with men in seeking to convince them (Is. 1:18; Acts 17:2) this does allow for disagreement, and thus the appeal to an AIM, implicit trust in which results in unity. But this is not how unity was achieved in the Bible, nor is unity by itself a goal of the Godly, as division is actually necessary because of truth, and is better than unity in error.

Instead, unity is the result of God affirming His truth to those who hear and obey it, and thus the most essential unity is that of the "unity of the Spirit," (Eph. 4:3) resulting from faith in the truth which the established and infallible Scriptures teach. And Romes AIM is not one of them, but is a substitute.

In addition, your charge that we endlessly criticize what is "revealed" until we satisfy our intellect can just a easily be leveled at RC apologists, beginning its rejection of the supremacy of only objective source which is assuredly infallible. It also ignore the rich history of evangelical literature, from Matthew Henry's complete commentary to the thousands of hymns penned by Fanny Crosby, to which i know of nothing comparable in scope and depth. To God be the glory.

PeaceByJesus said...

PS. the last reference to such works was not to render such as infallible truth, but evidences that those who esteem the Scriptures as the supreme authority do more than reprove those who do not, much less do so to "satisfy their intellect,"as per the charge of your ad hominem.

steelikat said...

John,

"Having 'Christ everywhere' (whether in the Thomistic view of the 'sacramental presence of Christ in the Eucharist' or in some kind of 'ongoing incarnation') ignore, in Calvin’s words, his 'specificity as a particular man. Christ everywhere really means that Jesus of Nazareth is nowhere...'

Jesus is God, so of course He is everywhere. Perhaps Calvin in this quote added the locative prepositional phrase "of Nazareth" to specify a particular mode of presence according to which He was not omnipresent (without knowing the context of the quote that seems most likely to me), but we cannot just baldly and without qualification state that Jesus is not omnipresent because by doing so we would be saying He is not God.

Calvin elsewhere affirms that at all times, even during His earthly ministry (and even when He was in Nazareth), Jesus was present everywhere: "They thrust upon us as something absurd the fact that if the Word of God became flesh, then he was confined within the narrow prison of an earthly body. This is mere impudence! For even if the Word in his immeasurable essence united with the nature of man into one person, we do not imagine that he was confined therein. Here is something marvelous: the Son of God descended from heaven in such a way that, without leaving heaven, he willed to be borne in the virgin's womb, to go about the earth, and to hang upon the cross; yet he continuously filled the world even as he had done from the beginning." from the Institutes Book 2, chapter 13.

steelikat said...

Here's the difference between a Christ-centered faith and a reason-centered faith.

If we have a reason-centered faith, we are in danger of either interpreting John 17:21 in a pantheistic way as Teilhardism does, explaining away divine truth such as Jesus of Nazareth's divinity (for example saying he was not Omnipresent), or explaining away His Word (for example denying that He meant what He said in verse 21). A Christ-centered faith, on the other hand, takes our Lord at His word, affirms the truth of His word, and in cases such as these simply admits that it is a mystery we will not understand in this life.

Reality cannot always be made to conform to our beautiful intricate precise theological boxes. Reality is more beautiful than anything we can build.

PeaceByJesus said...

"A Christ-centered faith, on the other hand, takes our Lord at His word,"

Does this mean that,

regarding such stories as Judges 1:1-18 and of the “holy wars of total destruction, fought by the Hebrews when they invaded Palestine [that,] The search for meaning in those wars centuries later was inspired, but the conclusions which attributed all those atrocities to the command of God were imperfect and provisional.”

Or that Old Testament stories of supernatural events such as Gn. cps 2-4; 6-8; 11 (creation, the Flood, Tower of Babel) are allegorical folk tales, and stories such as Num. 22 (Balaam’s vocal donkey) are fables, while Gn.12-36 (Abraham, Issaac, Jacob), 12-50 (records of Abraham and Joseph) Exodus, Judges 13-16 (Samson) 1Sam. 17 (David and Goliath) are stories which are “historical at their core,” “historical novels,” while overall the author simply used “traditions” to teach a religious lesson.

Or that a “conditioned thought patterns” hermeneutic is valid, and that Moses was not the author of the Pentateuch, or that "the ancient (Biblical] scribe what he or she thought God was communicating."

And that perhaps some of the miracle stories of Jesus in the New Testament may be adapted from similar ones in the Old Testament.”

And that “Matthew tells us that baby Jesus was taken to Egypt. This is not necessarily true,” but that Matthew placed Jesus in Egypt to convince his readers that Jesus was the real Israel. And that he may have only represented Jesus giving the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew, to show that Jesus was like Moses who received the law on Mount Sinai.

Where does it stop?

“The Bible is God’s word and man’s word. One must understand man’s word first in order to understand the word of God.”

The Church was so firmly convinced that the risen Lord who is the Jesus of history lived in her, and taught through her, that she expressed her teaching in the form of Jesus’ sayings.” The words are not Jesus but from the Church.

“Can we discover at least some words of Jesus that have escaped such elaboration? Bible scholars point to the very short sayings of Jesus, as for example those put together by Matthew in chapter 5, 1-12”

Or does comparing Scripture with Scripture show that the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit refers to such accounts which such liberal exegesis delegates as fables as being factually literal. “The serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety” (2Cor. 11:3; Rev. 12:9), and Balaam’s donkey did indeed speak (2Pet. 2:16), and Jonah did indeed spend 3 days and 3 nights in the belly of the whale (Mt. 12:40), and Israels history is always and inclusively treated as literal. And it is a slippery slope when historical statements are made out to be literary devices.

Muslims have taken advantage of the this liberal hermeneutic to impugn the veracity of the Scriptures, but who also misunderstand inspiration, while the Qur’an is guilty of what they charge. http://www.answering-islam.org/Responses/Shabir-Ally/nab.htm.

steelikat said...
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Turretinfan said...

Mr. Gormley:

"You’re being defensive...what are your parameters?"

I am? You could have fooled me! I thought I was being amused and concerned. Amused by the absurdity of your hypocritical appeals to standards you won't apply to your own church and concerned by whether you are making such appeals out of delusion or malice.

-TurretinFan

steelikat said...

PeaceByJesus,

No, "A Christ-centered faith, on the other hand, takes our Lord at His word," does not mean what you said.

Thanks for asking, though!

Michael Gormley said...
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zipper778 said...

Michael said: Jesus Christ said the final authority is the Church. See Matthew 18:15-18. The Church has the final authority to mitigate disputes, and to dispense the truth.

So maybe you should put a 'Zipper' on it (pun intended).


And what did Jesus say about the Scriptures Michael? How many times does He appeal to Scripture and how many times does Jesus appeal to "Tradition"? From what I can remember Jesus referenced the Scriptures over a dozen times in Matthew and John each, and over half a dozen times in Mark and Luke.

Jesus NEVER tells us to go to the church in Rome.

And btw, I won't put a zipper on it just because you don't like my responses. Obviously you are use to the Roman Catholic Churches method of silencing those who disagree with it.

PeaceByJesus said...

That is not all that can be a object of censure:

"having discovered the authority established by God, you must submit to it at once. There is no need of further search for the doctrines contained in the Christian Gospel, for the Church brings them all with her and will teach you them all.” Henry G. Graham, "What Faith Really Means"

"The intolerance of the Church toward error, the natural position of one who is the custodian of truth, her only reasonable attitude makes her forbid her children to read or to listen to heretical controversy, or to endeavor to discover religious truths by examining both sides of the question." “The reason of this stand of his is that, for him, there can be no two sides to a question which for him is settled; for him, there is no seeking after the truth: he possesses it in its fulness, as far as God and religion are concerned. “The reason of this stand of his is that, for him, there can be no two sides to a question which for him is settled; for him, there is no seeking after the truth: he possesses it in its fulness, as far as God and religion are concerned. (John H. Stapleton, Explanation of Catholic Morals, Chapter xxiii. the consistent believer (1904); Nihil Obstat. Remy Lafort, Censor Librorum. Imprimatur, John M. Farley, Archbishop of New York)

Thus at one time they were forbidden to debate. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/05034a.htm

Michael Gormley said...

Turretinfan said...
Mr. Gormley:
Amused by the absurdity of your hypocritical appeals to standards you won't apply to your own church and concerned by whether you are making such appeals out of delusion or malice.


Dear Turretinfan,
I felt some pain reading your DIATRIBE; I imagine you were RAGING over your fear, pain and shame.

Your PROCESS is not about the Catholic Church, but UNRESOLVED ISSUES from your childhood.

Was your father ANTI-CATHOLIC?

Michael Gormley said...
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Michael Gormley said...
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Turretinfan said...

Mr. Gormley,

This is all so fascinating! On the one hand, I'm a robot - on the other hand I have a childhood!

As for Bellisario, I encourage you to review his and my interactions (here).

-TurretinFan

PeaceByJesus said...

Mud may be used in opening the eyes of the blind, which is needed here, but it is poor substitute for an argument.,

And yet "It is error to believe that, if the Pope were a reprobate and an evil man and consequently a member of the devil, he has no power over the faithful." Council of Constance, Condemnation of Errors, against Wycliffe, Session VIII, and Hus: Session XV; DNZ:621, 617, 588)

"Even if the Pope were Satan incarnate, we ought not to raise up our heads against him, but calmly lie down to rest on his bosom." St. Catherine of Siena, SCS, p. 201-202, p. 222, (quoted in Apostolic Digest, by sedevacantist Michael Malone, Book 5: "The Book of Obedience", Chapter 1: "There is No Salvation Without Personal Submission to the Pope")

Contra,

"But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat...Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person. " (1 Corinthians 5:11,13)

Michael Gormley said...
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John Bugay said...

Michael Gormley, I'm deleting your comments because they are basically useless and insulting.

If you want to interact with some of the material that you've been presented with, that's fine. But what you've been posting is not welcome here.

Michael Gormley said...

The Protestant claim that it is the Bible that guides them and provides the final say in matters of their faith is inconsistent and cannot stand in the face of reason:

"In fact . . . the Protestant had no conceivable right to base any arguments on the inspiration of the Bible, for the inspiration of the Bible was a doctrine that had been believed, before the Reformation, on the mere authority of the Church; it rested on exactly the same basis as the doctrine of transubstantiation.

Protestantism repudiated transubstantiation and in doing so repudiated the authority of the Church; and then, without a shred of logic, calmly went on believing in the inspiration of the Bible, as if nothing had happened!

Did they suppose that Biblical inspiration was a self-evident fact, like the axioms of Euclid?"
(The Belief of Catholics, 106).

Turretinfan said...

What's inconsistent about being guided by the Bible to accept the doctrine of the inspiration of Scripture, given that the inspiration of Scripture is clearly and plainly taught in Scripture?

Michael Gormley said...

Biblical inspiration is revealed by God to the Church and that at the same time he gives to the Church the right and duty of teaching the fact of that inspiration.

This fact of inspiration is part of the deposit of faith, which was closed with the end of the apostolic age. Almighty God may have inspired other books, but, if so, he has not entrusted the Church with the right and duty of proclaiming this fact, nor can she put forth any infallible teaching to that effect.

Turretinfan said...

Is that intended as an answer to me? If so, how?

Michael Gormley said...
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Michael Gormley said...

Upon Which Scripture Verse Was The Catholic Church Founded?

Does anyone have the answer to this question?

Adam had only one bride and her name was Eve... Genesis 4:1

Eve was created by GOD from a rib removed from
the side of the 'sleeping' Adam... Genesis 2:21-24

Jesus Christ is the last Adam...
1Corinthians 15:45

Jesus Christ has only one bride, and she is the Church...
Jeremiah 16:9, John 3:28-29, Revelation 18:23, 19:7-8, 21:9

The only Bride of Christ was created while Jesus Christ 'slept' on the cross.
"...but one of the soldiers opened His side with a lance, and immediately there came out blood and water." (John 19:34)

Catechism of the Catholic Church - 766

The Old Testament prefigures the New Testament in so many ways. Both brides were created through openings in the side, through the rib cage, and next to the hearts of the two Adam's.

Some would say the Church was founded in Matthew 16:18, but therein Jesus Christ said He 'will' build His Church on the 'rock' of Peter...

Others say the Church was founded at Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles in Acts 2:1-47.

However that was when the Apostles were given the knowledge, and wisdom, and authority, with which to build the Church upon the cornerstone,
which is Jesus Christ.

Michael Gormley said...

Dear John Bugay,
I wonder if this might interest you?

John Bugay said...

Oh yeah, that's rich.

Turretinfan said...

Birds of a feather (Gormley, Bellisario, Greco) ...

John Bugay said...

TF, I don't pay any mind to these kinds of things.

Michael Gormley said...

Turretinfan said...
Birds of a feather (Gormley, Bellisario, Greco) ...

Dear Turretinfan,
Recently a Protestant named James Swan has made yet another feeble attempt to discredit the Catholic Church by pitting different Catholics against one another in their interpretation of a passage of Scripture.

Swan and his pretended "Reformers" are always looking for ways to prove that there are as many divisions in Catholic doctrine as there is in Protestant circles. It is quite amusing to watch him and his friends like John Bugay , an ex-Catholic with a chip on his shoulder, hurl any insult and accusation they can muster up, no matter how inept, to try and take the attention off of their disunity of major tenets of Christian faith.

In his latest post in which he posted over on another pretended "Reformer" James White's blog, he pits Pope Benedict XVI, Saint Thomas Aquinas and modern Catholic lay-apologist Robert Sungenis, against one another in their interpretation of Galatians 2:11-16, concerning the rebuke of St. Peter.

Michael Gormley said...

by Matthew Bellisario

....a guy who hides himself under an alias of Turretin Fan, and another noob blogger posting at the same site by the name of John Bugay (over at blog called "Beggars All") are notorious for the rhetoric they post on their blog basically labeling any Catholic who remains Catholic a supporter or pedophilia.

They have accused me of not saying anything about the abuse cases as if I somehow support these monsters, or are able to actually prosecute them myself, which of course is not true in either case.

What is more telling is that these anti-Catholic hate mongers do little to correct or address their own monsters that are abusing kids far more often in their own "churches."

Take for instance this story of a Protestant abuse that happened in Germany, where no one is likely to be prosecuted because of the time that has passed since the abuse case happened.

Read more >>>

PeaceByJesus said...

It happens in secular schools and institutions as well, and i
suspect that it is no coincidence the words of Jesus about cutting
off appendages rather than going into the fire which shall not be
quenched, came right after warning about offending one of these
little ones that believe in Him. (Mk. 9:42-48 )

And the flesh of any
saint is able to sin like an unbelievers, if not more, at least i
think mine could or has in accordance with light given, even if by
being like an uncooperative bucking mule.

But the problem with the “your own house” type of
thing is that Protestants, are hardly a monolithic entity, especially
as defined by RCAs (RC apologists) and thus would include homosexual
ministers to Fred Phelps to Mormons.

Evangelicals may be defined according to certain views, as Barna
does, and if someone wants to compare which souls are overall more
committed and holy, RCs or evangelicals, then the latter evidence
that they are.


But overall it appears all faith in the West (except witchcraft)
is heading south in quality and quantity and atheism is rising.

As for priestly pedophilia, and the attraction to the priesthood many
seem to have, the (changeable church) law which restricts the
priesthood (besides it being bishops/elders being who are ordained by
men as pastors) to those who have the gift of celibacy (1Cor. 7:7 ) is
both Biblically unwarranted and unreasonable.

zipper778 said...

Michael, if you want to see someone with a chip on their shoulder look no further then your "Catholic Champion" (Matthew Bellisario). You may not have been around this blog for a long time but a little while ago, he use to post over here alot. Almost all of his posts had nothing to do with the topic, and because of that he was sort of like you Michael except that he was often downright rude. Many times he avoided the subject just so that he could say Roman Catholics are right and Protestants are wrong.

I guess the reason why I don't agree with Roman Catholicism is not because of a chip on my shoulder (I wasn't abused by a priest, my parents weren't "anti-catholic, etc). My problem with Roman Catholicism is that it makes a lot of claims that it has no base, or proof, for them. That is why there was an attempt to reform "the Church" but that would mean getting rid of anything that there wasn't any evidence for. That's why you see the pope excommunicating Luther, and murdering anyone who questioned his power.

You see, the claims that Roman Catholicism makes really has no evidence for them. I've even seen a Roman Catholic go so far as to claim that if what they believed in had evidence, then it wouldn't be worth believing. That's one of many problems that Roman Catholicism has. If it wants to claim that there is no evidence for their positions, then that's fine, but it shouldn't parade around acting like it has proof until it is proven wrong.

PeaceByJesus said...

In fact, according to its logic, . . . the Roman Catholic church had no conceivable right to base any arguments on the inspiration of the Bible, for the inspiration of the Bible was a doctrine that had been believed, before any church even existed in a city called Rome, on the authority of Jews such as Moses and Jesus, and whose authoritative to add authoritative new teaching was on same basis as that of the apostles, in critical contrast to Rome's hyperventilation of self-proclaimed authority.

Catholicism effectively transubstantiated itself into being a Moses and Jesus, but without their absence of contradiction of the Scriptures, and the powerful constant supernatural attestation afforded them, while Rome repudiated Jesus for reproving the Jews who supposed they could do as Rome presumes, as if being stewards f Holy Writ rendered one assuredly infallible interpreters of it, and calmly went on believing she was of superior authority over the Bible, as if nothing had happened!

Did they suppose that Divine inspiration of certain writings was not a self-evident reality, they believed long before Rome anyone from Rome claimed a AIM was needed to established them as such, Scripture being established by its unique and enduring qualities, internal conflation, and the effects realized by those who eat this manna from Heaven according to its directions? The result of which progressive establishment ecclesiastical councils could only hope recognize and discern? (How to deal with challenges by requiring implicit submission, as to God. 101).

PeaceByJesus said...

Actually, the church coming out of Jesus side was quite good. However, the claim that the church of Rome is uniquely that church is one more wound to His sinless body.

Ben m said...

Hi Zip,

My problem with Roman Catholicism is that it makes a lot of claims that it has no base, or proof, for them. That is why there was an attempt to reform "the Church" but that would mean getting rid of anything that there wasn't any evidence for.

Evidence you say? How about we start with the evidence for Rome’s doctrinal purity, a purity which she maintained century after century, beginning from earliest apostolic times? (see Romans 1:8 and Rom. 15:14, where the Roman Church is said to be "full of goodness" and "filled with all knowledge").

Yet how easily folks around here ignore or conveniently dismiss such facts in their ceaseless passion to impugn, in the words of the noted Lutheran scholar Jaroslav Pelikan, the “ massive fact of Rome’s spotless (or nearly spotless) record for doctrinal orthodoxy ” in those early centuries!

Think about it, Zip. Surely it would not have been possible for the Roman Church (or any church for that matter!) to have maintained such a “record of doctrinal orthodoxy” for centuries amidst countless heresies and merciless persecutions, were it not for the guidance and protection of divine providence!

Think on this.

zipper778 said...

Hi Ben, I want to start out by saying that I find your posts interesting and I enjoy the actual interaction that you give others on this blog. I'm serious about this too. It is admirable that you take the time to read posts and have a serious discussion about them and you do bring up good information.

To address the point that you bring up, I agree with you that the church in Rome during Paul's days was a good, if not a great example of how a church should be. To be fair though, this is a time before anyone had declared themselves to be a pope, or anything like a pope in Rome. That is Rome's biggest mistake ever when you really think about it.

My point isn't that the church in Rome has never been right, my point is that today the church in Rome is absolutely nothing like the early Christian churches. However, I mean this both structurally and doctrinally. Protestant churches also differ in ways from the early church, to be fair. But doctrinally, many Protestant churches are much closer to the early church then Rome is.

My point about there is no proof for Rome is not that there was never a good church there, but that the church there has incorporated many false doctrines throughout the ages. Examples of doctrines that Rome is unable and unwilling to provide proof for:

The papacy (with papal infallibility)
Transubstantiation
Marian doctrines
Purgatory

If only the RCC would either provide proof for these doctrines, or at least admit that they are uninterested in finding proof for them. By doing the latter Rome should cease to even try to provide proof since they believe it is unnecessary because only the decleration of a dogma is of value.

That is where the Christianity should seperate itself from Rome, because Jesus is real and He really did die and forgave us from all of our sins by His grace. The Gospel isn't the good news from Rome, it is the good news from God.

zipper778 said...

I also want to add that there is proof that Jesus is real and that He really died and forgave us of all of our sins by His grace. He truly is our Strong Tower, our Rock, and our Cornerstone.

Michael Gormley said...

zipper778 said...
Almost all of his posts had nothing to do with the topic, and because of that he was sort of like you Michael except that he was often downright rude.

Dear Zip, John Bugay, Peace BJ & Ben M,

Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven. (Luke 6: 37)

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The fervent prayer of a righteous person is very powerful. (James 5: 16)

I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.

This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.
(John 13: 34-35)

I will be praying for John Bugay this Thursday (Rosary). I can't pray for Zipper, because I don't know who he/she is.

Turretinfan said...

"Evidence you say? How about we start with the evidence for Rome’s doctrinal purity, a purity which she maintained century after century, beginning from earliest apostolic times? (see Romans 1:8 and Rom. 15:14, where the Roman Church is said to be "full of goodness" and "filled with all knowledge")."

She lacks doctrinal purity now, though. So, what good are those reports of early purity?

- TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

Mr. Gormley,

Do you think we are Christ's disciples?

-TurretinFan

zipper778 said...

Michael, you really should take your own advice about judging because it was you who started a rant about James Swan and John Bugay. You mocked James by sarcastically calling him a reformer and you mocked John by calling him a noob with a chip on his shoulder. Don't believe me? Here is what you said:

"Swan and his pretended "Reformers" are always looking for ways to prove that there are as many divisions in Catholic doctrine as there is in Protestant circles. It is quite amusing to watch him and his friends like John Bugay , an ex-Catholic with a chip on his shoulder, hurl any insult and accusation they can muster up, no matter how inept, to try and take the attention off of their disunity of major tenets of Christian faith."

And I forgot about this one:

"What is more telling is that these anti-Catholic hate mongers do little to correct or address their own monsters that are abusing kids far more often in their own "churches." "

All of the emphesis I added to show that you were sarcastic, mocked, and judged others. That's why you need to take your own advice about judging others before you pull the "your judging" card.

And btw, you're obviously not reading much of our comments because Ben M is a Roman Catholic and he has NEVER laughed at the RCC as far as I know. No wonder your comments Michael have very little to do with what's been posted.

James Swan said...

"Swan and his pretended "Reformers"

I did miss this comment.

I see that the comments are active here, so I've moved the post up so it doesn't fall off the main page.

John Bugay said...

Hi Zipper -- I've been watching this thread but not paying too much attention to it -- especially not the insults. It just shows he has no response other than to rant and fall back on platitudes.

Michael Gormley said...

John Bugay said...
It just shows he has no response other than to rant and fall back on platitudes.

Dear John,
At least you don't hide behind an alias like Turretinfan & Zipper 778.

I will be praying for you this Thursday (Rosary).

Michael Gormley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Gormley said...

zipper778 said...
...because Ben M is a Roman Catholic and he has NEVER laughed at the RCC as far as I know.

Dear Ben M,
I apologise, please forgive me!

God bless you
Michael Gormley

James Swan said...

Michael,

Are there any other blogs for you to stalk? I'm wearied by your comments.

PeaceByJesus said...

It seem that the rarefied air of those who think that they alone on the earth assuredly infallible, in whom multitudes implicitly trust, is being breathed by her subjects, who only seem to see arrogance coming from the other side. Gary Michuta even wrote a book which warns of Protestant "wolves" preying on Catholic children.

You would think they would be more concerned over them becoming a typical liberal Catholic and subsidizing a church by Bingo than becoming a typical conservative evangelical, who, while being separated brethren in a ecclesia communities that are not worthy to properly be called churches, are still supposed to be "brethren."

zipper778 said...

Michael said:

"At least you don't hide behind an alias like Turretinfan & Zipper 778."

I can't believe how inconsiderate and ridiculous you can be Michael, especially for your age. Isn't it possible that the reason I "hide" behind my alias is because I don't like the idea of my real name being online, especially in the day and age where people don't need a lot of information about you to steal your identity? Seriously, Michael. If you don't have a response to our arguements just leave it at that and stop tryingto get us with cheap shots. It only makes you look immature and incompetent.

Michael Gormley said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ben m said...

Hi Zipper and TurretinFan,

Well, my friends, no doubt about it; you're both clearly convinced that the Roman Church - the once pure Roman Church! – fell from grace at some point. But again, this only begs some crucial questions:

How did Rome fall? And exactly when? And why didn't the Holy Spirit protect the Church whose apostolic faith, even centuries after its founding, continued to lauded and appealed to by the Fathers and in councils?

“But let me tell you that the faith of Rome which was praised by the voice of an Apostle, does not recognize tricks of this kind. A faith which has been guaranteed by the authority of an Apostle cannot be changed though an Angel should announce another gospel than that which he preached.” - St. Jerome, Apology Against Rufinus (Book III) )

“Because if he be named Universal, above the holy Roman Church which has a prior rank, which is the head of all the Churches of God, it is certain that he shows himself as a rebel against the holy Councils, and a heretic. For, if he is Universal, he is recognized to have the Primacy even over the Church of our See, which appears ridiculous to all faithful Christians: because in the whole world the chief rank and power was given to the blessed Apostle Peter by the Redeemer of the world himself; and through the same Apostle, whose place we unworthily hold, the holy Catholic and Apostolic Roman Church holds the first rank, and the authority of power, now and for ever …” - Second Council of Nicæa

“Paschasinus, the most reverend bishop and legate of the Apostolic See, stood up in the midst with his most reverend colleagues and said: We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city, which is the head of all the churches…” - Council of Chalcedon (A.D. 451) .

But more importantly, how could the Roman Church have even the possibility of falling, given the prophetic words of Scripture which explicitly Rome was destined to “crush Satan”?

“The God of peace will quickly crush Satan under your feet.” Romans 16:20

St. Paul is addressing the Church at Rome in this prophetic passage. And who doubts that this prophecy concerning Satan being crushed under the feet of the Roman Church has yet to be fulfilled?


And to Michael Gormley ...

No need to apologize for anything, Michael. But my apologies to all for not being able to respond to comments in a more timely manner.

Btw, Michael, regarding the Rosary, did you know that some Protestants pray a kind of "Rosary"? See this, this and this.

John Bugay said...

Ben m said:

Well, my friends, no doubt about it; you're both clearly convinced that the Roman Church - the once pure Roman Church! – fell from grace at some point. But again, this only begs some crucial questions:

How did Rome fall? And exactly when? And why didn't the Holy Spirit protect the Church whose apostolic faith, even centuries after its founding, continued to lauded and appealed to by the Fathers and in councils?


You yourself beg some very important questions here. I've responded in several places to contentions like these, including here:

... before you talk about “when the ‘Roman Catholic Church’ got off the trail,” you first have to establish what the early church was in history, and where the “Roman Catholic Church” came from in the first place. Rome was but one of five "patriarchates" -- and "patriarch" itself was not an early development.

It is vitally important to get the definition straight here of the word “church,” and so a lot of my response here will focus on that definition, and other definitions. If we are equivocating on a particular word, without agreeing on the definition of that word [“church”], then we won’t get anywhere.


And also here, for example:

For a long time it has been noted that, apart from the letters of Ignatius, the writings of the so-called Apostolic Fathers, who do not really belong to the Apostolic age but to the beginning of the second century—[1 Clement, Barnabas, the Shepherd of Hermas]—despite their theological interest, are to a considerable distance from New Testament thought, and to a considerable extent relapse into a moralism which ignores the notion of grace, and of the redemptive death of Christ, so central to apostolic theology. [See Torrance’s “The Doctrine of Grace in the Apostolic Fathers,” 1948].

... But after 150 contact with the apostolic age was re-established through the construction of the canon, which discarded all impure and deformed sources of information. Thus it is confirmed that, by subordinating all subsequent tradition to the canon, the Church once and for all saved its apostolic basis. It enabled its members to hear, thanks to this canon, continually afresh and throughout all the centuries to come the authentic word of the apostles, a privilege which no oral tradition, passing through Polycarp or Papias, could have assured them (Oscar Cullman, from the article entitled "The Tradition" in his work "The Early Church", London: SCM Press, LTD, pg 96).



And also from the link above:

The “Fathers” were not a monolithic group. Rome was a missionary outpost for the first 200 years. And I don't think it's a stretch to say that they were teaching different things in different places. Compare Irenaeus with Origen with Tertullian, as but three examples. There was some core teaching that was consistent -- "Christ and him crucified," for example was still a part of it. There was a huge effort to remain consistent with the doctrine of God. But consider what happened to the doctrine of grace. You can't assume these guys were all teaching out of the same "Catechism of the Catholic Church". There were many heterodox teachings. ("Pope" Callistus was very sympathetic to the modalists of his day.)

This, of course, is only the beginning, and a lot more follows, but your method here is essentially dishonest and if you are any kind of decent human being, you will understand and admit this.

Turretinfan said...

"How did Rome fall? And exactly when? And why didn't the Holy Spirit protect the Church whose apostolic faith, even centuries after its founding, continued to lauded and appealed to by the Fathers and in councils?"

Perhaps it was in the third century, when Hippolytus accused Zephyrinus of modalism.

Perhaps it was in the fourth century when Liberius signed the arianizing confession in an effort to regain power in Rome.

Perhaps it was in the seventh century when Honorius I taught monothelitism.

Perhaps it was during the middle ages when the papacy was controlled by what is termed the pornacracy - or during the so-called Babylonian captivity - or when the bishop of Rome was excommunicated by the Eastern sees - or any one of a number of times that the bishoprick of Rome was secured by simony.

Perhaps it was at the end of the 15th century and beginning of the 16th century when Alexander VI lived a life of open sexual immorality.

Perhaps it was later in the 16th century when Julius III made his still-underage sexual partner a cardinal.

Who knows? And frankly who cares?

If you see a rotten banana, do you have to know when exactly it went from pure to rotten? Or are the fruit flies enjoying it proof enough?

Where the carcass is there shall the eagles be gathered together -- guess where Cardinal Law is now!

-TurretinFan

Viisaus said...

"How did Rome fall? And exactly when?"

Already back in the 17th century, bishop Ussher responded to this query, addressing his Jesuit opponent:

http://www.archive.org/details/answertojesuitwi00usshuoft

p. 7

"Or rather, if you please, call to mind the parable in the Gospel, where 'kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man, which sowed good seed in his field; hut while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.' These that slept, took no notice, when or by whom the tares were scattered among the wheat; neither at the first rising did they discern betwixt the one and the other, though they were awake. But 'when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares:' and then they put the question unto their master, 'Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?'

Their master indeed telleth them, it was the enemy's doing; but you could tell them otherwise, and come upon them thus: "You yourselves grant, that the seed which was first sown in this field, was good seed, and such as was put there by your master himself. If this which you call tares, be no good grain, and hath sprung from some other seed than that which was sown here at first; I would fain know that man's name, who was the sower of it; and likewise the time in which it was sown. Now, you being not able to shew either the one or the other, it must needs be, that your eyes here deceive you: or if these be tares, they are of no enemy's, but of your master's own sowing."


In other words, we may not be able to precisely pinpoint exactly who first sowed the tares of Romanism (although we can make some pretty educated guesses) we can clearly observe that un-Biblical and anti-Biblical tares HAVE shown up.

Ben m said...

It is vitally important to get the definition straight here of the word “church,” and so a lot of my response here will focus on that definition, and other definitions.

Well, John, whatever definition one chooses for “church,” an indisputable fact remains: The Scriptures teach unambiguously that the Roman Church was an example par excellence of what a “church” ought to be. They depict Rome as the model Church of the New Testament, as the standard against which the doctrinal integrity of all the other NT churches could and ought to be measured. And from this it follows that Rome must have enjoyed divine privilege and protection.

Now what Scripture doesn't say or teach, is that there were not sinners in the Roman Church - undoubtedly there were, some greater, some lesser.

The other responses to my deleted post simply point out this fact of sinners in the Church, even in high places. But this will always be the case!

“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners--of whom I am the worst.” 1 Tim. 1:15

Yet all this is quite beside the point.

What I'm seeking to know is not whether the Church contains sinners, both great and small, but whether you all actually think Christ ever abandoned his Church, his beloved bride, even for an instant?

It's a straightforward question, folks. It ought to be easy enough to give a straightforward answer.

Thanks.

zipper778 said...

Ben M says:

"you all actually think Christ ever abandoned his Church, his beloved bride, even for an instant?
"

And the straight forward answer to this is "no". However, while the Scriptures demonstrate that the church in Rome was a good church at the time, it was never described as the definition of the word "Church" in the Scriptures. The Scriptures describe "the Church" as the body of believers (see Ephesians 5, Colossians 1), regardless of whether they were in Rome, Jerusalem, or anywhere else. "The Church" is so much bigger then Rome can ever be, and Rome now has to get over that.

My second point is that the Holy Spirit has lead men throughout the last 2000 years to be "the Church" regardless if they were a member of the Roman church or any other. There are many examples of people throughout history that held onto the Word of God, even if it meant disagreeing with the official teachings of the Roman Church.

PeaceByJesus said...

I think it was progressive as she took upon the form of the empire in which it was birthed, and used its means, becoming a vast autocratic organization which cannot be extrapolated out of the N.T. church and the means it is constituted to use, and by which its authority is established, not by a supposed papal pedigree.

I also am inclined to think that such words as below express a longing by Rome to regain more of the secular influence she once had. And that what it advocates is idealistic but dangerous, despite its qualifications.

"To manage the global economy; to revive economies hit by the crisis; to avoid any deterioration of the present crisis and the greater imbalances that would result; to bring about integral and timely disarmament, food security and peace; to guarantee the protection of the environment and to regulate migration: for all this, there is urgent need of a true world political authority, as my predecessor Blessed John XXIII indicated some years ago.

Such an authority would need to be regulated by law, to observe consistently the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity, to seek to establish the common good[147], and to make a commitment to securing authentic integral human development inspired by the values of charity in truth.

Furthermore, such an authority would need to be universally recognized and to be vested with the effective power to ensure security for all, regard for justice, and respect for rights[148]. Obviously it would have to have the authority to ensure compliance with its decisions from all parties, and also with the coordinated measures adopted in various international forums." - Excerpt, Caritas In Veritate (Pope Benedict XVI Encyclical)
Vatican Website ^ | June 29, 2009 | Pope Benedict XVI
67.

PeaceByJesus said...

The issue is how the church that was the subject of Paul's address in Rome is construed to be the predecessor to one under what was to be a Perpetuated Petrine Papacy. It is hardly conceivable that this church was begun by Peter, and even less that Peter was in Rome, as Paul would have not needed to address it, and is unlikely to have built on another man's foundation, much less neglect to even mention Peter anywhere in it, esp. amidst the multitude of his salutations in cp. 16.

And of course, in no other epistles is there any reminder to remember or pray for Peter, or obey him, as would be expected if he were reigning over the church as its supreme head after the manner which Rome has him.

I do see Peter being the leader among brethren of the apostles and initially of the early church, and exercising a general pastoral office, but as one living no better than they (the tannner's house was near the sea for a reason), and not being looked to as a supreme CEO or demi-god that his supposed successors became. Nor do i do see formal provision made for papal predecessors, or even for any of the original apostles save for Judas (unlike James), which was necessary to maintain the 12 foundational apostles, (Eph. 2:20; Rv. 21:14) though some, including Luther, may somewhat functionally operate as such, or as prophets.

And being married (Mt. 8:14; 1Cor. 9:5) and evidently poor, (Acts 3:6) is more fitting for a evangelical preacher:)

In addition, Romans is hardly the most fitting book to use as a foundation for a religion that infallibly taught that saved believers are accounted to have "truly merited eternal life" by those very works which have been done in God. And that eternal life is both a gift as well as reward to their good works and merits.” (Trent, Chapter XVI; The Sixth Session Decree on justification, 1547)

And that the one justified by the good works that he performs by the grace of God merits the attainment of eternal life itself. (Trent, Canons Concerning Justification, Canon 32)

If Rome had a predecessor it spiritually would be the church of the Galatians.

However, the fundamental error of Michael and Rome here is that of presuming that historical linkage, real or contrived, constitutes the basis for legitimacy and authority, which is does not, although up thru the 12 apostles this was a necessary attribute.

But while Jews thought this gave them legitimacy as Jews, both the Baptist and the Lord set them straight. (Mt. 3:9; Jn. 8:44) An God can yet raised up stones to build His church.

What Paul taught the Romans was that it is not historical linkage back to Abraham that constitutes legitimacy, but Abrahamic type faith in the gospel of grace, (Rm. 2:28,29) as it by such that the church has its members and endures, while those who were born after the flesh persecutes them who are born after the Spirit. (Gal. 4:29) And which is Rome's legacy, despite claims of her self-proclaimed infallible magisterium.

John Bugay said...

I've got a new post scheduled to run in the morning that illustrates just how far distant "the papacy" is from the the Roman church that Paul wrote to.

Ben m said...

Zip,

The Scriptures describe "the Church" as the body of believers (see Ephesians 5, Colossians 1), regardless of whether they were in Rome, Jerusalem, or anywhere else. "The Church" is so much bigger then Rome can ever be, and Rome now has to get over that.

On the contrary! Zip, have you not read the Scriptures? The Holy Spirit led “all the churches of Christ” to be in communion with the Roman Church, and to honor that Church. See Romans 16:16.

The Scriptures hold Rome up as an example to all the churches (Rom. 1:8). Thus the “church” of Scripture, however defined, always includes the Roman Church as a central and integral part!

My second point is that the Holy Spirit has lead men throughout the last 2000 years to be "the Church" regardless if they were a member of the Roman church or any other.

There was a spirit indeed that led such men - but it wasn't a "holy" spirit! One of the marks of all these false teachers was their refusal to listen to the one Church:

"And if he will not hear the Church let him be to thee as the heathen and the publican" (Matthew 18:17)

See again Romans 16:16 for the proper Scriptural pattern to be followed.

And see those Church councils which acknowledged the Roman Church as the “head of all the churches.”

“Because if he be named Universal, above the holy Roman Church which has a prior rank, which is the head of all the Churches of God, it is certain that he shows himself as a rebel against the holy Councils, and a heretic. For, if he is Universal, he is recognized to have the Primacy even over the Church of our See, which appears ridiculous to all faithful Christians: because in the whole world the chief rank and power was given to the blessed Apostle Peter by the Redeemer of the world himself; and through the same Apostle, whose place we unworthily hold, the holy Catholic and Apostolic Roman Church holds the first rank, and the authority of power, now and for ever …” - Second Council of Nicæa

“Paschasinus, the most reverend bishop and legate of the Apostolic See, stood up in the midst with his most reverend colleagues and said: We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city, which is the head of all the churches…” - Council of Chalcedon (A.D. 451) .

There are many examples of people throughout history that held onto the Word of God, even if it meant disagreeing with the official teachings of the Roman Church.

Again, they were called heretics!

Zip, the very “word of God” you appeal to refutes your opinions at every turn, as I’ve just shown. You’re now just fighting against the Scriptures and what they explicitly teach.

But God honors Rome. The Scriptures honors Rome. The Fathers honor Rome. History records only heretics, schismatics and unbelievers doing otherwise.

John,

I've got a new post scheduled to run in the morning that illustrates just how far distant "the papacy" is from the the Roman church that Paul wrote to.

Somehow, John, that doesn’t come as a surprise! ;)

Viisaus said...

"On the contrary! Zip, have you not read the Scriptures? The Holy Spirit led “all the churches of Christ” to be in communion with the Roman Church, and to honor that Church. See Romans 16:16.

The Scriptures hold Rome up as an example to all the churches (Rom. 1:8). Thus the “church” of Scripture, however defined, always includes the Roman Church as a central and integral part!"


Those Romans citations are some desperate cherry-picking, showing only how you are lacking better proof-materials.

Tell us, why did Paul not bother to say one word about Peter, the supposed founder of the Roman church, in his lengthy and detailed farewells in Romans 16?

zipper778 said...

Ben, with the sources that you gave about the bishop in Rome being "the most blessed and apostolic bishop" I can't help but think of what Jesus had to say about men like that in Matthew 23.

Instead of looking for a church magesterium, maybe we should remember that the majesty is Jesus Christ and not men. Who cares about what position that people are placed in? My only care is that we have a God who loves us and forgave us of all of our sins. No pope, council, or priest can do that.

It is the laymen, who does the will of God by bringing forth fruit to the world, and showing the love of Christ to his neighbor.

Michael Gormley said...

zipper778 said...
"The Church" is so much bigger then Rome can ever be, and Rome now has to get over that.

Peter Built the Church in Rome

"It is, therefore, recorded that Paul was beheaded in Rome itself, and that Peter likewise was crucified under Nero. This account of Peter and Paul is substantiated by the fact that their names are preserved in the cemeteries of that place even to the present day.

It is confirmed likewise by Caius, a member of the Church, who arose under Zephyrinus, bishop of Rome. He, in a published disputation with Proclus, the leader of the Phrygian heresy, speaks as follows concerning the places where the sacred corpses of the aforesaid apostles are laid:

'But I can show the trophies of the apostles. For if you will go to the Vatican or to the Ostian way, you will find the trophies of those who laid the foundations of this church.'" Gaius, fragment in Eusebius' Church History, 2:25 (A.D. 198).

Turretinfan said...

Ben:

You provided this:

“Paschasinus, the most reverend bishop and legate of the Apostolic See, stood up in the midst with his most reverend colleagues and said: We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city, which is the head of all the churches…” - Council of Chalcedon (A.D. 451) .

Did you notice a few things about that:

1) That's not the council's comment, that's Paschasius' comment (Paschasinus being the legate from Rome).

2) Did you notice that he calls the Bishop of Rome the bishop of that city, and not the Bishop of Bishops or the Bishop of the Universal church?

3) Did you notice that even when referring to the Roman church as the head of the other churches, he is making a distinction between multiple churches?

These are important facts, and you would do well to note them!

-TurretinFan

PeaceByJesus said...

I continue to be amazed at the attempts by RCAs to both suppose that a historical linkage would establish a church as a or the one true one - as if God could not raise up sons of Abraham from stones (Mt. 3:9) - rather than demonstrable Scriptural faith. And then the church it attempts to link itself to did not even have Peter as its pastor, who is not even mentioned at all, while its teachings are contrary to the present Roman church, chapter by chapter.

As for the 3 proof texts, Rom 1:8: "First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world,"
that is not surprising, due to its strategic location (all roads lead to..) with perhaps 800,000 people, nor is its propagation unique, for

1Thes. 1:8: “For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing

As for Rm. 15:14 and being "full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another,"

That they were full of goodness is true, thank God, yet the election of Thessalonians was affirmed by Paul, who said “work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope,” (1Thes. 1:3) and that “your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth,” (2Thes. 1:3) and they and the church in Philadelphia had tested, enduring faith. (Rev. 3:10)

As for all knowledge, Paul also affirmed even the problematic Corinthians, who were said to “abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us," (2Cor. 8:7) “That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge.” “So that ye come behind in no gift.” (1Cor. 1:5,7a)

As for being able also to admonish one another, the text does not say admonish other churches, while the Thessalonians and Colossians were called to do admonish the brethren, (1Thes. 5:14; Col. 3:16)

And if we are to make Rome the ruling church due to such words, then Titus must have been the first pope, as he was charged, “These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.” (Titus 2:15)

As for Rom 16:16: “Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you.” What the text does not says is “the churches of Christ submit to you,” and if “salute” (KJV) means submit then they were to do so to a women, (Rm. 16:6) while what it (aspazomai) means is “welcome” or “greet,” and its use here does not show a recognition of preeminence.

While this does not minimize the virtues of this church, “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called saints,” (Rm. 1:7) likely meeting in various assemblies, (Rm. 16:5) it does not lend itself to the idea of a centralized command and control from Rome, under a supreme Caesarian-papacy, reigning fro a papal palace, with its autocratic assuredly infallible magisterium. And what Paul after presenting the gospel which Rome contradicts with its gospel of works-merit, and preeminence based upon ecclesiastical papal progeny, the manifestly God-ordained (contra Rome) apostle warns to “mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them, “ who, among other things, “by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. (Romans 16:17,18) And which indicts Rome, as while “the simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going,” (Proverbs 14:15) by searching the Scriptures with heart to know and obey truth (Acts 17:11) the Biblically perverse practices and presumptions of an impenitent Rome are made manifest, as well as any we have.

Michael Gormley said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John Lollard said...

Michael,

Can I just submit that when your organization can properly be called a "pornocracy", when your organization is involved in international child molestation rings, in fraud and simony, political intrigue, assassinations, torturing and murdering non-combatants, known even 500 years ago for providing a hide-away for homosexuality and run by a men who live in ornate palaces adorned with gold who castrate young men so they can enjoy the pleasure of the eunuch's childlike voice, let me just submit that the gates of Hell have prevailed against such an organization.

Really.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

Ben m said...

Viisaus,


Those Romans citations are some desperate cherry-picking, showing only how you are lacking better proof-materials.

They prove that “all the churches of Christ” honored the Roman Church. This is the very antithesis of Protestantism! That fact alone is hugely significant is it not?

Tell us, why did Paul not bother to say one word about Peter, the supposed founder of the Roman church, in his lengthy and detailed farewells in Romans 16?

I have no idea. But Paul fails to mention any number of things in his letters, things which one would normally think he ought to have mentioned.

Zipper,

Ben, with the sources that you gave about the bishop in Rome being "the most blessed and apostolic bishop" I can't help but think of what Jesus had to say about men like that in Matthew 23.

Matt 23 has no bearing here.

Instead of looking for a church magesterium, maybe we should remember that the majesty is Jesus Christ and not men.

Try deviating or dissenting from reformed dogmas held by the “Magisterium” around here and see how long you’ll be welcome! ;)

Turretinfan,

Did you notice a few things about that:

1) That's not the council's comment, that's Paschasius' comment (Paschasinus being the legate from Rome).

2) Did you notice that he calls the Bishop of Rome the bishop of that city, and not the Bishop of Bishops or the Bishop of the Universal church?

3) Did you notice that even when referring to the Roman church as the head of the other churches, he is making a distinction between multiple churches?

These are important facts, and you would do well to note them!


I noted them. And did you happen to you note that the council offered no protest to Paschasinus’ statement?

John Lollard said...

Michael, do pray for me. My real name isn't John Lollard, but then again, Mary can't hear you anyway so it isn't really going to matter.

If you decide to pray to the One and Only God, the one who can hear you because He is omniscient, then He knows my real name anyway and He'll know who you're referring to.

I was actually just thinking about this, actually, in reference to something Dr. White posted recently. Offering to pray for me is not a substitute for giving a reason for why you believe what you believe. If your beliefs are false, which you have been completely unable to demonstrate otherwise, then your prayers to Mary are wasted breath and your prayers to God that I would abandon all reason and truth and turn to perversion are not (praise God) going to be listened to.

How about instead of asking God to convert us to a system that you cannot adequately account for, how about you ask God why how it is that popes and bishops and cardinals and whatnot, allegedly under the protection of the Holy Spirit from doctrinal error, were committing some of the most atrocious, grievous, despicable sins, using this organization that the Holy Spirit was allegedly guiding to protect them from the consequences and even the power of their positions to enable them to do some of these things.

Really. If you want to make the stretch that this is a promise of protection against demonic influence, I cannot help but notice all the demonic influence pouring out of Rome for over a millennium.

Why? Why is there wickedness in Rome if the Holy Spirit is guiding the pope, keeping him from error? Why is the Spirit allegedly so unconcerned about the pope cutting off the testicles of children or raping female pilgrims inside of cathedrals?

Because the pope confessed Mary's Immaculate Conception while doing so, those "minor" little things aren't that big a deal?

Really Michael. Don't insult me, don't insult Truth, if nothing else don't insult your hierarchy so much as to ignore this really serious issue with a flippant promise to think of my name while repeating requests to the dead.

Your organization fell into apostasy. They denied the Gospel of Christ and were perverted by forces of evil to doing lewd and obscene things that are too gross to mention explicitly. Their doctrines were as good as their behavior, which was atrocious.

What makes you think your prayers will be heard if you are asking God for me to join up with such an organization?

Please, if to no one else then justify in your own mind why you should even bother praying for my conversion before you do so.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

zipper778 said...

Ben M says:

Matt 23 has no bearing here.

Why? Is it because the magisterium does put on heavy loads on it's followers (Matt 23:4)?

Or that they put on big shows and litergies for people to see (Matt 23:5)? And they wear all sorts of colorful and fancy cloths and vestments (also Matt 23:5).

Maybe it's because they love to be in the highest position (the position of pope) which is warned against in Matt 23:6.

Don't you find it weird that when you greet popes you have to bend down and kiss their ring or feet and call the "your holiness"? (Matt 23:7)

The title "holy father" is in direct conflict with Matt 23:9.

Try deviating or dissenting from reformed dogmas held by the “Magisterium” around here and see how long you’ll be welcome! ;)


It's true that this is a Reformation blog and that would attract people who have Evangelical roots. I'm sure that if I went to a Roman Catholic forum or posted on Michael Gormley's blog I wouldn't last long there either. So, if you don't like what you see here, you are welcome to leave.

zipper778 said...

Michael said:


Dear Mr "John Lollard,"
Hiding behind an alias, like Zipper778 & Turretinfan, "Jack," isn't going to help you deal with your RAGE towards the Catholic Church.

It looks like you miss out (Rosary) "Johnny!!"

PS : Was your father a RAGEAHOLIC, "John Lollard?"


Michael, you're really proving that you have nothing to contribute to the conversation because you can't seem to understand the point that sometimes people make an "alias" to protect their identities from indentity thieves. It's a common concern that many have and if you're not worried about your's then good for you.

And about your PS, not everyone had a hard childhood like you Michael. You're the one provoking pointless anger from people simply because they don't agree with your church. Just because someone may disagree with Rome doesn't mean they had childhood issues, but you're making an excellent case that people who did have childhood issues blindly latch onto Rome. Do you want to imply that, or would you like to have an intelligent conversation?

John Lollard said...

Michael,

I am unimportant. Whether I have "RAGE" against an apostate organization that perverts and slanders the Gospel really doesn't matter, as compared to whether or not this organization that you're going to pray for me to join actually is apostate.

Rather than talking about me or my dad or my use of an alias or the sweet, sweet attempts to speak to the dead about me that I'm missing out on, why don't you present an apologia, a reason - as St. Peter commanded you - about why you think anything you are doing or saying or believing is the Truth from God?

If it isn't the Truth from God, then all the prayers in the world aren't going to sway me to it. All the angels in heaven and saints asleep are not going to lift one finger to convince me of your beliefs if they are not from God.

What makes you think they are from God?

A verse that cannot possibly apply to Rome, and that you seemingly have no interest in demonstrating applies to Rome, and that you couldn't demonstrate if you wanted to in light of the simple facts of history.

If Matthew 16 promises the divine protection of the pope against the demonic influence (presumably what "gates of Hades" means) then why is Rome so apparently controlled and fueled by demonic influence all through out history?

If this verse does not mean what you think it means, and I can't see how it CAN, then ignoring the meaning of this passage and praying for me to just believe a faulty interpretation is not a fruitful use of your time. At all.

Praying for you yourself to understand this passage would seem a lot better. If you're so sure that you do understand it, please explain how the divinely guided pope could act as such a servant of these armies of Hell that he is supposedly victorious over.

Really. Think clearly about this. If you're wrong, there's no use praying for others to be just as wrong. If you're right, there should be a reason why you're right and you should try to articulate it.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

PeaceByJesus said...

"The Roman Catholic church does not claim to be merely one valid expression of the Church which Christ founded. "

That was covered Michael, as in "a or the one true one," which you seemed to have missed. And much more which shows that your attempt to use Scripture to validate Rome as the OTC is invalid.

For according to Roman Catholic apologists we cannot ascertain truth by “private interpretation” of Scripture — which they erroneously suppose 1Pt. 1:20 refers to — as for that one needs the Assuredly Infallible Magisterium of Rome.

Thus however condescending to us you may be in appealing to Scripture as the supreme authority, the end result is to convince us that we cannot appeal to it as the supreme authority.

As for the actually attempt, the rest of the NT does not establish Peter as the foundation of the church, as in contrast to Peter, that the LORD Jesus is the Rock (“petra”) or "stone" (“lithos,” and which denotes a large rock in Mk. 16:4) upon which the church is built is one of the most abundantly confirmed doctrines in the Bible (petra: Rm. 9:33; 1Cor. 10:4; 1Pet. 2:8; cf. Lk. 6:48; 1Cor. 3:11; lithos: Mat. 21:42; Mk.12:10-11; Lk. 20:17-18; Act. 4:11; Rm. 9:33; Eph. 2:20; cf. Dt. 32:4, Is. 28:16) including by Peter himself. (1Pt. 2:4-8)

Rome's current catechism even affirms: “On the rock of this faith confessed by St Peter, Christ build his Church,” (pt. 1, sec. 2, cp. 2, para. 424) though it attempts to have it both ways.

Moreover, the “unbroken (as defined by Rome) succession of pope includes men who would not even qualify as Christians or remain as members of the New Testament church let alone be leaders.

John Bugay said...

Michael Gormley, you are just a kook in wolves clothing, and your preaching is beyond tiresome.

Turretinfan said...

Thanks for taking out the off-topic garbage.

John Bugay said...

Thanks T-Fan. At a couple of points, it seemed as if there was some decent interaction, but he's really just interested in preaching at us.

John Lollard said...

It's bizarre to me that RCAs seem to think we Protestants will be so impressed by their calling us every synonym for "dishonest" and then performing elaborate ceremonies to ask the deceased to forcibly change our way of thinking to a system that may not even be true that explanations or answers or anything more than mere assertion is deemed so unnecessary.

Then again, I'm sure there are plenty of Prots who do our own version of this (whatever that might be). Still, it's frustrating.

PeaceByJesus said...

And then quote a few texts of Scripture which cannot establish their claims, when in reality they want us to place implicit trust in the mighty AIM.

Related to that, I know that there is no infallible list of all infallible teachings. and I came across an Orthodox page that speculates about how many such possible teachings there may be. http://www.orthodoxanswers.org/papalinfallibility.pdf

It quotes Bishop Vincent Gasser, who delivered a four-hour speech in V1, in which he states, "Already thousands and thousands of dogmatic judgments have gone forth from the apostolic See;"

Do you have a list of the things that Catholics may disagree on, besides which things they may not disagree on?

Incidentally, this blog could really use a better index.

Ben m said...

Zip,

Why? Is it because the magisterium does put on heavy loads on it's followers (Matt 23:4)?

Current example, please.

Or that they put on big shows and litergies for people to see (Matt 23:5)? And they wear all sorts of colorful and fancy cloths and vestments (also Matt 23:5).

Zip, Jesus wasn’t opposing the wearing of liturgical vestments, but only the hypocritical attitude of those whose only concern, so it would seem, was to “appear holy” in the eyes of men by their outward appearances.

But read Augustine’s letter 23, chapter 3. There you will glimpse the high dignity of the African churches. There you will read of lofty episcopal thrones, which were ascended by flights of steps, of elaborate pulpits, of “processions,” of the chanting of “consecrated virgins” etc. And was all this pomp merely for the sake of being "seen by men"? On the contrary, Augustine warns that such marks, or “tokens” of respect, while legitimate and good, and even salutary for the Church, would not, without a corresponding spiritual worthiness in their recipients, avail anything for conscience sake on the day of Judgment. But read the letter for yourself.

Don't you find it weird that when you greet popes you have to bend down and kiss their ring or feet and call the "your holiness"? (Matt 23:7)

It’s just a mark of humility and respect toward the one who holds the office of the Fisherman.

The title "holy father" is in direct conflict with Matt 23:9.

You know, Zip, when it comes to the letter of the law, the Pharisees have nothing on you! ;) But let's examine your last assertion in light of some slightly less legalistic souls - the "holy Fathers" themselves!

From the Second Council of Nicæa:

“The bishop Basil of Ancyra read as follows from a book: Inasmuch as ecclesiastical legislation has canonically been handed down from past time, even from the beginning from the holy Apostles, and from their successors, who were our HOLY FATHERS and teachers.”

“Wherefore I, Basil, bishop of the city of Ancyra, proposing to be united to the Catholic Church, and to Hadrian the MOST HOLY Pope of Old Rome…”

“Anathema to those who spurn the teachings of the HOLY FATHERS and the tradition of the Catholic Church…”

“Anathema to those who say that the making of images is a diabolical invention and not a tradition of our HOLY FATHERS.”

And Augustine:

“To Cælestine, MY LORD MOST BLESSED, and HOLY FATHER Venerated with All Due Affection, Augustine Sends Greeting in The Lord.” Letter 209.

“They also named our HOLY FATHER the Catholic bishop Valentinus, who was then at court, saying that they wished to be heard along with him.” Letter 88.

And last but not least, the Council of Chalcedon (A.D. 451):

“The most glorious judges and the whole senate said; Let each one of the most reverend bishops of the present synod, hasten to set forth how he believes, writing without any fear, but placing the fear of God before his eyes; knowing that our most divine and pious lord believes according to the ecthesis of the three hundred and eighteen HOLY FATHERS at Nice, and according to the ecthesis of the one hundred and fifty after them, and according to the Canonical epistles and ectheses of the HOLY FATHERS Gregory, Basil, Athanasius, Hilary, Ambrose …”

John Lollard said...

Michael,

I see that your recent comments are deleted, but I did manage to read them. At the risk of getting you to spout off more silliness, can you please listen to something anyone is saying.

If I don't think that Jesus in Matt 16:19 establishes the office of the pope, then I'm not going to feel any sort of guilt when you call me a liar or blasphemer for denying the office of the papacy. Repeating the same thing like a resounding gong, ignoring everything any of my brothers has said, and making no demonstration that you even care what we have to say simply does not impress me.

Imagine this. Imagine I came to your blog and quoted Revelation 17 and insisted that this was referring to the RCC and therefore anyone who supports the RCC is guilty of denying Christ and worshipping a false god. And imagine that someone on your blog denied that Revelation 17 referred to the RCC, and that my response was to then accuse them of calling St. John a liar and "subtracting from the scroll" and that all the plagues of Revelation would come upon them for holding to the Whore of Babylon, and starting bemoaning what a terrible pack of wolves we have in the RCC, who deny Christ's true Church and worship a false harlot of adultery.

How convincing does that style of argumentation sound to you, and for how long would you tolerate my comments?

Repeating Matthew 16:18,19 like suddenly a promise that the Church would prevail over the gates of death is just going to manifest itself in my mind as a promise that the armies of some fictitious underworld are going to come to attack the Bishop of Rome, and do a really good job of turning the bishop into every single wicked and abominable act *except* for pronouncing incorrect doctrine because that's the only really important thing to God or demons, then I'm sorry. I don't buy it. Calling me names won't make me feel bad for denying it. I will gladly be called a liar for denying falsehood.

If you have an answer to my objections, then great, but really I'd rather you take half an hour or so to think about what I'm trying to communicate, and if the doctrine of papal primacy makes sense in light of what I'm trying to say, and if it does make sense then why it makes sense in light of what I've said about wholsescale papal corruption.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

PS If my gracious hosts who run the blog want me to stop talking to Michael, I will gladly comply

John Bugay said...

John Lollard, please feel free to engage anyone you'd like here.

zipper778 said...

Ben M said:

Current example, please.

The number of anathemas given to those who disagree with all of the dogmas of Rome, whether it can be proved or not. Individual penances that priests give to laymen for their sins. Traditions that have nothing to do with what Christ taught (mandatory attendance to mass on "holy days of obligation", among many others.

so it would seem, was to “appear holy” in the eyes of men by their outward appearances.


You don't think that priests who are dressed in liturgical vestments appear holy to laymen?

It’s just a mark of humility and respect toward the one who holds the office of the Fisherman.

From what you're saying it appears that you believe that Peter is the only "fisherman" or fisher of men. In fact, Peter himself dealt with that same "respect" in Acts 10:25,26.

As far as the quotes with high titles in them given to bishops and others, those titles really appear to have found their tradition in the Roman Empire rather then apostalic tradition. The apostles were very humble, while the men in your quotes appear to want to please and flatter the men they are writing to.

Matthew D. Schultz said...

Gormley, why are you spamming the comment box?

Turretinfan said...

Mr. Gormley: Perhaps you should take your medications.

-TurretinFan

John Lollard said...

This is really sad. Michael, you really do need to see a doctor. There are people who love you. Please go get help and stop arguing with people on the internet; this is clearly not what you need to be doing.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

zipper778 said...

John said:

This is really sad. Michael, you really do need to see a doctor. There are people who love you. Please go get help and stop arguing with people on the internet; this is clearly not what you need to be doing.

x2

I'm sorry you had to go this way Michael. But you really aren't willing to attempt intelligent conversation and are only willing to spam. Prepare for a ban here.

Just out of curiousity, maybe he really is a disciple of Matthew Bellisario.

PeaceByJesus said...

"And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: {6} He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner [a smelly occupation], whose house is by the sea side [for good reason]: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do. " (Acts 10:5-6)

"And as Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped him. {26} But Peter took him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also am a man. " (Acts 10:25-26)

"But of these who seemed to be somewhat, (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: God accepteth no man's person:) for they who seemed to be somewhat in conference added nothing to me: " (Galatians 2:6)

"And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another. " (1 Corinthians 4:6)

All this does not militate against giving respect to authority, nor does it mean humble souls cannot be in distinctive garb, but if we are Christians then we should manifest the attitude of Peter who never referred to himself as "the holy father" or even "right reverend" and such, and never said he was more than "a man," "a servant" and "an apostle" (2Pt. 1:1) and would not let man bow down to him.

And Jesus, while being Master and Lord, washed his feet as an example, rather than teaching others how to kiss Peter's feet.

Ben m said...

And Jesus, while being Master and Lord, washed his feet as an example, rather than teaching others how to kiss Peter's feet.

Actually, Jesus’ is giving an example here of profound humility, one he taught his disciples to imitate! And how did he, being “Master and Lord,” express this humility? By KNEELING before his inferiors - mere men - and washing the lowest part of their bodies! See this, this, this and this.

So we see Jesus himself kneeling down before men as a lesson in humility, and STRONGLY REBUKING Peter for having objected to the appropriateness of this gesture! And indeed Jesus was so humble that he even knelt down before Judas and washed his feet! And again.

And btw, in recent times (and perhaps even occasionally in times past?), the Popes, following Jesus' example, have also washed the feet of others.

And when did Luther or Calvin ever do such a thing??

On the contrary, in Calvin's case at least, whenever one of his subjects dared to disobey or rebel against the tyrant, he would find himself in short order compelled to kneel before the "Great Preacher" himself and seek "forgiveness"! Soure 2

zipper778 said...

Ben M, as soon as the pope tries to bend down and kiss my feet or ring, we might have something to talk about. Otherwise, I disagree with the practice, even if Calvin did it too. There's no need for anyone to lord themselves over anyone in Christianity because we only have one Lord.

Turretinfan said...

Ben:

You make yourself sound like an idiot when you call Calvin a tyrant. Don't you know even a little about the history of Geneva?

-TurretinFan

John Lollard said...

TF,

I don't think it behooves you to call someone a name for not knowing something and then do notthing to help them to learn it.

For instance, the only thing I know about Calvin in Geneva is that he had Servetus executed for his publications. So I myself am pretty ignorant of Calvin's Geneva and from my limited knowledge not too impressed by him.

I'm not really interested in Calvin's behavior because I don't place my faith in the mayor of Geneva for binding doctrine or ceremonies that are supposed to save me, but maybe you could give Ben and I some information on exactly how things worked in Geneva so that we will not be so uneducated on the issue?

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

PeaceByJesus said...

Ben, i actually i was aware, by the grace of God, that this is how a Catholic might think to respond, but i assumed that they would see that the problem was not that of being willing to bow down, but that of habitually receiving such, especially as part of the demi-god status assumed or afforded many of the popes of Rome.

Jesus was also sometimes ministered unto, but it does not take Christian character to be on the receiving end, and thus your attempt to invoke Jn 13 is rather desperate to justify the now tempered but long term practice of treating popes as exalted royal kings.

As for Calvin, this does not excuse him if he did the like, or the Puritans persecuting believers such as Roger Williams, but it shows how much further they had to go to get out of Rome from whence they learned these things.

PeaceByJesus said...

Besides, there is no record of anyone bowing down to Calvin Coolidge, except his valet.:)

Ben m said...

Zip,

as soon as the pope tries to bend down and kiss my feet or ring, we might have something to talk about. Otherwise, I disagree with the practice, even if Calvin did it too. There's no need for anyone to lord themselves over anyone in Christianity because we only have one Lord.

Little late for that, Zip. ;) You’ve already likened the Pope to the Pharisees in Matthew 23. So that being the case, how does Jesus command we behave toward them?

“Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to His disciples, saying: ‘The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses; therefore ALL THAT THEY TELL YOU, DO AND OBSERVE, but do not do according to their deeds; for they say things and do not do them.’” Matt. 23:1-3

John Lollard,

I don't think it behooves you to call someone a name for not knowing something and then do nothing to help them to learn it.

But as it happens, John, I do know a thing or three about the persecuting spirit of the so-called “reformers.” For brevity though, I’ll just cite one passage from William Thomas Walsh’s Philip II.

“There was something more in most Calvinist teaching than the desire for religious freedom and the reform of abuses. It was more like the ancient hatred which had followed the Catholic Church from her cradle, seeking not her reform but her utter destruction. Calvin himself was as ruthless in this regard as Mohammed. One of his letters to English Protestants declares that those who refuse to give up the Roman Catholic faith must be put to the sword. Calvinism quickly became an international movement, with a world capital at Geneva and with Calvin as a Pope ruling over a city with a regimentation uncomfortably suggestive of some totalitarian state of the future.”
Source.

TF, I’m sorry you disagree with the verdict of history, or rather, are just in denial about it. But the fact is, Calvin, like Luther and all the pretended reformers, was indeed a tyrant. This is not personal; it’s just the sad historical reality. And what would you call a man who made himself answerable to no one in theological matters (essentially appointing himself a “bishop of bishops”!), who tortured and / or murdered all who dared question or defy his idiot theology, who wrote stuff like this etc, etc? What would you call such a creature?

PeaceByJesus,

Catholics show reverence to the Pope out of respect for his office and for his authority, which is derived from the Bible.

Peace.

John Bugay said...

Ben, your accusations are totally unwarranted. Calvin himself had no official political power; yet he was in Geneva by request of the people. In fact, some had begged him to come there. As for the methods of public discipline, [and your own sources are very vague], consider the times, and what it was that had shaped those times for hundreds of years, if not more.

Geneva was in fact one of the first cities of the era to throw off a monarchy and to have been ruled by councils. It was in fact, outside of ancient Greece, one of the first experiments in democracy.

Bernard Cottret's biography notes that "Calvin's relationship with Geneva includes an uninterrupted series of frictions, sometimes carried to the point of hatred, and has given rise to numerous misunderstandings. To begin with, there is a danger" [to which you have succumbed] "in retrospectively identifying a great man, in this case Calvin, with the society that surrounds him. Calvin's influence on Geneva is undeniable, but it occurred with a general evolution" of the city's government (159). "Ancient demons assailed Calvin and his contemporaries; they were born from the close association of life and death and from the weakness of the moment."

And while Calvin was there by request, there was an active opposition.

Don't forget Calvin's role as a second-generation Reformer. According to Owen Chadwick, "The problem now was not the overthrow of a papacy, but the construction of new modes of power. Luther rested much upon the doctrine of the priesthood of the laity and derived part of his practical programme from the doctrine. Calvin recognized that the doctrine was in Scripture and emphasized the theoretical consequences. But what was needed was the authority of a rightly called and purified ministry. In breaking down papal authority, the Reformation seemed to have left the authority of the Christian ministry vague and uncertain." (Chadwick, "The Reformation," New York and London: Penguin Books, pg 83.)

And note this:

Where authority existed among Protestant Churches, apart from the personal authority of individual men of stature, it rested with the prince or the city magistrate. Calvin believed that in organizing the Church at Geneva he must organize it in imitation of the primitive Church, and thereby reassert the independence of the Church and the divine authority of the ministers.

There was a lot going on, and Calvin was one voice in a constellation of voices that shaped that city. And in short, the Reformation suffered from having to undo the consequences of centuries of Roman domination of secular governments, and the very resistance to that form of government. They were among the first to experiment in that time with a form of democracy that did not always play out according to what our expectations might have been today.

John Bugay said...

Ben, You’ve already likened the Pope to the Pharisees in Matthew 23. So that being the case, how does Jesus command we behave toward them?

Understand that in comparing pope to pharisees, there is more than one component to that comparison. Does it concern you that you must rely on a fudging of concepts and equivocation to make your point? To defend what is arguably the most important cog in your whole system, the papacy? Probably not. Any lie in defense of Mother Rome is morally acceptable. The end justifies the means.

In any event, I'm sure that Zipper was referring to the fact that popes are like "whitewashed tombs, full of dead men's bones," rather than that either pope or pharisees had been given absolute authority.

Do you understand that sense of it?

Do you understand that "They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them"?

Do you see the comparison that they "shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces" and that they themselves do not enter, nor will [they]let those enter who are trying to."?

Do you understand that popes are "blind guides" who neglect "more important matters of thelaw -- justice, mercy and faithfulness," who strain out a gnat but swallow a camel? Who claim to be the descendants of those who murdered the prophets?

To whom Christ promised to send other "prophets and sages and teachers"?

I'm sure all of that was lost on you.

John Bugay said...

Ben said: “Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to His disciples, saying: ‘The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses; therefore ALL THAT THEY TELL YOU, DO AND OBSERVE, but do not do according to their deeds; for they say things and do not do them.’” Matt. 23:1-3

It is a ridiculous association for you to suggest that Jesus is telling the people to to obey the popes. No popes are in view here at all. And if you think it's a view of how to relate to authority, you are wrong about that, too. When Jesus says, "do and observe all that they tell you," the only thing the Pharisees were supposed to tell you is what Moses wrote in the law. According to John Nolland, one of the best commenters on the text of Matthew:

Though it might be possible to refer 'seat of Moses' to a heavenly throne for Moses, a link to an item of furniture in some synagogues seems more likely, though such an item in its turn may be intended to represent a heavenly throne. Surviving ancient stone chairs from synagogue ruins seem to have been designed to hold scrolls of Scripture.

He says, "if this is right, then there is very little likelihood that anybody ever actually sat in the seat of Moses, both because of the dishonour to the Law which would be implied and the presumption involved in taking the place of Moses (and more so if representation of a heavenly throne is involved)."

Nolland also cites Powell, who says "Jesus may simply be acknowledging the powerful social and religious position that [the scribes and Pharisees] occupy in a world where most people are illiterate and copies of the Torah are not plentiful. Since Jesus' disciples do not themselves have copies of the Torah, they will be dependent on the scribes and the Pharisees to know what Moses said ... In light of such dependence, Jesus advises his disciples to heed the words that the scribes and Pharisees speak when they sit in the seat of Moses, that is, when they pass on the words of the Torah itself." (Nolland pgs 922-923).

In that case, "they could be relied on to report the Law of Moses with care and accuracy."

The popes cannot even do this. They are far worse than the Pharisees.

John Lollard said...

I hate cheerleading, but thanks, John, for that bit of information about the Scroll of the Law possibly being set on the "seat of Moses". That would certainly make Jesus' rebuke very vivid and applicable here - the people who presume the place of God's word.

I've also always wondered how this text can possibly be showing us an infallible "Seat of Moses" that the Jews had to obey for oral tradition when allegedly the papacy has already been established in chapters 16 and 18. If Peter is already holding the keys and the power to bind and loose, why should people obey the Pharisees who sit on Moses' seat? Shouldn't they obey the recently crowned pope? Shouldn't he be saying "Peter sits in Peter's seat, therefore you must be careful to observe everything he tells you to"?

And how much sense does it make to use this as a "type" for the infallible papacy when the infallible Sanhedrin executed the Messiah for blasphemy?

I hate ganging up as much as I hate cheerleading, but maybe some passing RC could clarify that for me? Have any RCAs tried to clarify this in the past?

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

Ben m said...

John,

Ben, your accusations are totally unwarranted.

Then tell us, John, who was Calvin’s bishop? You know, that individual whom all Christians are obliged to obey in matters of religion? And by what authority did he punish and kill people for disagreeing with him?

In any event, I'm sure that Zipper was referring to the fact that popes are like "whitewashed tombs, full of dead men's bones," rather than that either pope or pharisees had been given absolute authority.

This is just the old Donatist game, one to which Augustine responded in his Answer to Petilian the Donatist:

“[The heretic] Petilianus said: "Since then you are not blessed by falsifying the commands of God, the Lord Christ condemns you by His divine decrees: ‘Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! ... For you are like whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.'"

“Augustine answered: Tell me whether you have said anything which may not equally be said against you in turn by any slanderous and evil-speaking tongue. ...

“Furthermore, when such men sit in the seat of Moses, for which the Lord preserved its due honor, why do you blaspheme the apostolic chair on account of men whom, justly or unjustly, you compare with these?”

“And yet not even on account of those Pharisees, with whom you compare us—not from any motives of prudence, but from malice—did our Lord enjoin that the seat of Moses should be deserted, which seat He doubtless meant to be a figure of His own; for He said indeed that they who sat in Moses' seat were ever saying and not doing, but warns the people to do what they say, and not to do what they do, Matthew 23:2-3 lest the chair, with all its holiness, should be deserted, and the unity of the flock divided through the faithlessness of the shepherds.” Source.


It is a ridiculous association for you to suggest that Jesus is telling the people to obey the popes.

What Jesus is doing here is teaching the virtue of obedience. And he’s telling the people to obey their religious leaders, even if some are bad.


John Lollard,

If Peter is already holding the keys and the power to bind and loose, why should people obey the Pharisees who sit on Moses' seat? Shouldn't they obey the recently crowned pope? Shouldn't he be saying "Peter sits in Peter's seat, therefore you must be careful to observe everything he tells you to"?

John, there’s no difficulty here, because neither Peter nor any of the other apostles were given authority over the Jews of the Synagogue, but only over Christians in the Church.

Peace.

John Lollard said...

Matthew 23:1
"Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples:"

Jesus said this to the crowds and his disciples. Compare to Matthew 5:1,2

"Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them. He said:..."

Or ht beginning of the sermon on the plain in Luke 6:17.

Jesus is teaching this to the crowds and His disciples, that they need to obey everything the Pharisees say because they sit in Moses' seat. He says this to the crowds following Him and to His disciples while the infallible Pope is standing right next to Him. What a weird thing to do...

I appreciate that you're trying to save your position, and thank you for taking the time to respond to me, but I don't think it makes any sense. The Pope is only infallible when speaking to Christians? The dogma of the Immaculate Conception is not true if you're a Jew?

Is the Sanhedrin binding on Jews? Like were they otherwise in the right to accuse Jesus' followers of breaking the Sabbath by picking the heads of wheat in all other regards except for not realizing that their authority is only over Jews in the synagogue and not Christians in the Church? If there had been some "non-Christian Jew" (which the distinction didn't even exist at this time) following Jesus doing the same thing, would Jesus have agreed with them that the Jew was breaking the law but the Disciples weren't?

Since Christianity is considered apostasy in the eyes of the Pharisees and since the Pharisees are a binding authority on Jews, doesn't that mean that Jews are actually right in denying Christ?

When the infallible Sanhedrin binding on Jews rules that Christianity is a heresy and the infallible Magisterium binding on Christians rules that modern Judaism is a heresy, what happens to the laws of logic?

By the way, where does the text of Matt 16 or c. 18 say that the authority is only over the Church and not the Jews, or even that the disciples understood themselves as adherents to a different and distinct religion from Judaism?

How did this infallible authority that sits in Moses' seat fail to recognize the Messiah standing right in front of them, and how did they go further to officially sentence Him to death as a blasphemer?

I'm sorry to be so heavy with the questions, but it doesn't make any sense to me that the Pope is right there during this passage and yet this passage is about the power that the Pope is supposed to have inherited from the old Jewish system yet that is still invested in the old Jewish system that will a few days later have God killed for blasphemy.

Maybe I'm just especially dense, but I don't feel like you've clarified anything. If anything, your distinction between dueling infallible authorities makes even less sense now. But I do thank you for trying. Maybe if you could recommend some sort of resource for me written by an RCA type that seeks to clarify what is going on and who is infallible and who isn't, or how all of them are at the same time in any sort of coherent sense?

I know I'm asking a lot, but I really am just perplexed at how you have managed to make sense out of this, or if you've managed to make sense out of this, and if you did then how you managed to do so.

Thanks you for your time, again, and I'm sorry to trouble you with all my questions. RCs almost never, ever respond to me, and I'm glad that you did.

Love in Christ,
John Lollard

Ben m said...

John, L.,

Thanks you for your time, again, and I'm sorry to trouble you with all my questions. RCs almost never, ever respond to me, and I'm glad that you did.

I'm always happy to respond as well as I can.

Now John, let try a different way. Here's a simple question:

If you saw Jesus holding a bible (OT + NT), which would be the infallible authority for you?

John Lollard said...

Hey Ben,

What do you mean, "which"? The Scriptures are the inspired words of God and Jesus is the living Word of God. Both are infallible authorities. Both testaments of the Bible are likewise infallible authorities as both are theopneustos.

I don't presume to speak for anyone else, least not my Reformed brothers, but I consider any form of revelation sent by God as an authority. The Bible gives us very clear means by which to test whether supposed revelation is sent from God. Both canons are revelation and Jesus Himself is revelation. The oral prophecies of Elijah are revelation and the content of the Sermon on the Mount as taught by Jesus was revelation before Matthew penned it down.

I have a very bad habit of talking too much, so I'll stop answering here. I have no idea what you're driving at, but I hope you do plan to explain the infallibility trilemna you've set up here.

Thanks again,
JL

PeaceByJesus said...

Ben said, "Catholics show reverence to the Pope out of respect for his office and for his authority, which is derived from the Bible, " which shows you still do not get the issue. which is not that of souls being willing to do obeisance, but that of constantly allowing to be done to you.

First, back to Jn. 13, Peter was not wrong in his basic motive against Jesus washing his feet, and was not corrected for that, but was constrained to accept it due to its spiritual consequences which it signified.

However, for this to be applicable to the Pope would require him to be the one washing other's feet, and while this might be a one a year ritual, sitting on a throne, often with a crown on your head with brethren or seekers bowing down to you as a practice, even without kissing your feet, cannot be derived as a justifiable practice. And instead it evidences a contrary attitude on the part of those who accept it.

And the type of arguments RC's seek to invoke in support of such is only a negative testimony to their claim for preeminence.

Likewise invoking Calvin, as if we implicitly followed such as Popes!

Making Evangelicals like RCs simply will not do, and while you must defend a church which you implicit assent to as infallible, we defend a basic faith insofar as it is substantiated by the only object source that we are assured therein is infallible.

PeaceByJesus said...

The last post also relates to the question (something) about whether Jesus standing before us or the Bible should be considered most infallible. The question then would be, "how would i be sure this was the real Jesus? While i am sure he could evidence it by miracles as He did on earth, what He also did was substantiate it by the Scriptures . (Mt. 22:; Lk. 24:27,44)

In addition, the comparison fails unless Jesus was materially present, as while God is the supreme assuredly infallible authority, the Scriptures are the supreme material authority on earth.

Ben m said...

John L,

What do you mean, "which"? The Scriptures are the inspired words of God and Jesus is the living Word of God. Both are infallible authorities. Both testaments of the Bible are likewise infallible authorities as both are theopneustos.

Actually, Jesus is the only “infallible” authority, strictly speaking. Everything else in this world has only a relative infallibility and relative authority.

I have no idea what you're driving at, but I hope you do plan to explain the infallibility trilemna you've set up here.

John, I think we’re talking past each other. It seems to me that you think infallibility implies obedience whereas fallibility does not. So would your please clarify you position? Very specifically:

Did Jesus command us to obey our lawful superiors, either secular or ecclesiastical, regardless of whether or not they were infallible?

Ben m said...

PeaceByJesus,

You still do not get the issue. which is not that of souls being willing to do obeisance, but that of constantly allowing to be done to you.

Who determines what kind and how much obeisance is proper to be shown to others?

First, back to Jn. 13, Peter was not wrong in his basic motive against Jesus washing his feet, and was not corrected for that, but was constrained to accept it due to its spiritual consequences which it signified.

The point is that Jesus was teaching a lesson in great humility; Peter’s motive for his protestation is, I think, rather beside the point.

However, for this to be applicable to the Pope would require him to be the one washing other's feet, and while this might be a one a year ritual, sitting on a throne, often with a crown on your head with brethren or seekers bowing down to you as a practice, even without kissing your feet, cannot be derived as a justifiable practice. And instead it evidences a contrary attitude on the part of those who accept it.

I'd say it is the Lutherans who provide the contrary attitude! LOL

And the type of arguments RC's seek to invoke in support of such is only a negative testimony to their claim for preeminence.

See above! ;) LOL

Likewise invoking Calvin, as if we implicitly followed such as Popes!

Good. Now clue in all the “Calvinists” out there!

Making Evangelicals like RCs simply will not do, and while you must defend a church which you implicit assent to as infallible, we defend a basic faith insofar as it is substantiated by the only object source that we are assured therein is infallible.

So does your church teach error or not?

In addition, the comparison fails unless Jesus was materially present, as while God is the supreme assuredly infallible authority, the Scriptures are the supreme material authority on earth.

Even for false churches and heretics?

John Lollard said...

"Actually, Jesus is the only “infallible” authority,"

Sez who? :P

I think I see what you're trying to say. The authority of Scripture comes from the fact that it is the words of God, contains the thoughts and ideas and expressions of God. In that sense, the Jesus who is speaking to us through the Bible is the same Jesus who we will one day stand before, and His authority is the same however he communicates.

Maybe we are talking past on another.

When the Pharisees claimed to sit on Moses' seat, they claimed to have a capital "T" Tradition going back to Moses not found in Scripture and that they could use to bind and loose on people. They claimed that their offices and duties allowed them to rule on issues of the Law, annulling things here and adding things there, as they wished, because after all it was really part of this ancient Tradition anyway. You see Jesus interacting with these claims over and over whenever the Pharisees challenged Him on why He doesn't obey the Law and He gives them the actual Law and then shows them how they have twisted God's Law to their own end, adding to it traditions that they made up and have nothing to do with Moses.

As far as I can tell, you (and other Catholics whom I have asked about this text) are claiming that despite all of this, here Jesus is sincerely encouraging His followers (the crowds and disciples) to obey these Pharisees who all through the previous chapter have been trying to trick Him in order to accuse Him, because they really do have this Mosaic Tradition and really do have the power to bind traditions onto people as though it were actually the Law of Moses itself.

I was reading the book of Job the other day, in particular the part where God speaks, and it was humorous how sarcastic the Lord is with Job in asking him all of these questions. At one point, God says of Job: "Surely you know, for you were already born! You have lived so many years!"

Hear that sarcasm?

Do you not hear it here, in Matt 23:2, too? Read the past two chapters, about Jesus' entry into Jerusalem and His interactions with the Pharisee's there, and see if it stands out the more.

I may have read more in to your position than you put out, because I have spoken to other Catholics about this before who said that this passage shows the position of an infallible head of the Church was present even in pre-Incarnation Israel and only carried over in to the person of Peter.

You asked me a clear question and I haven't answered it, almost in return for you not answering any of mine :P I believe Jesus is here being sarcastic and tearing down the hubris of the Pharisees. I don't think that He is here commanding obedience to any sort of authority. Elsewhere, Christians are commanded to be subject to ecclesial authorities and secular authorities, and since God alone is infallible, yes, even if they aren't infallible.

And yet if Christians had just blindly followed authorities, like in Acts 4 where the teachers of the law and the Pharisees who "sit in Moses' seat" tell Peter and John to stop evangelizing (v 18), then we wouldn't be here. Secular authorities once fed Christians to lions, religious authorities once handed us over to secular authorities to be fed to lions. But hear what Peter says in vv. 19,20.

Obeying the words of men and calling it the words of God is not the same as obeying the words of God. That is what the Pharisees did and at every point Jesus called them on it.

So why don't you explain to me, in Matthew 23, who is fallible and who is infallible? It seems we have three candidates for infallibility here, Jesus, Peter, or the Sanhedrin. Which ones are infallible and to whom?

(My answer, BTW, is that Christ along is infallible and to everyone)

Love in Christ,
JL

Ben m said...

When the Pharisees claimed to sit on Moses' seat, they claimed to have a capital "T" Tradition going back to Moses not found in Scripture and that they could use to bind and loose on people.

Jesus is the one who said the Pharisees sat on Moses’ seat.

As for traditions not found in the Bible, Protestantism has more than its share !

They claimed that their offices and duties allowed them to rule on issues of the Law, annulling things here and adding things there, as they wished, because after all it was really part of this ancient Tradition anyway.

Who cares? That has nothing to do with how true tradition works, and certainly nothing to do with how Catholic Tradition works. But why compare the Synagogue to the Church? Did God ever promise the Holy Spirit (the Spirit of Truth), to the Synagogue?

As far as I can tell, you (and other Catholics whom I have asked about this text) are claiming that despite all of this, here Jesus is sincerely encouraging His followers (the crowds and disciples) to obey these Pharisees…

But Jesus did say “all that they tell you, do and observe,” even though they were bad. In any event, there are no provisions in the Bible – anywhere - for Christians, under any circumstances, to break away from the one Church on account of bad Christians or bad leaders.

And yet if Christians had just blindly followed authorities, like in Acts 4 where the teachers of the law and the Pharisees who "sit in Moses' seat" tell Peter and John to stop evangelizing (v 18), then we wouldn't be here. Secular authorities once fed Christians to lions, religious authorities once handed us over to secular authorities to be fed to lions. But hear what Peter says in vv. 19,20.

Nobody’s “blindly” following anything here.You’re just hopelessly misapplying these passages.

The Christian faith is what was at issue here, not that obedience which Christians in the Church were duty bound to give their bishops, even if some were bad. So neither these passages you cite nor any others you may care to cite can be brought forth as justifying Christians in breaking from the Church.

Obeying the words of men and calling it the words of God is not the same as obeying the words of God. That is what the Pharisees did and at every point Jesus called them on it.

But unlike Jesus, who alone had the right to do so, you have neither the right nor the authority to correct anyone.

So why don't you explain to me, in Matthew 23, who is fallible and who is infallible? It seems we have three candidates for infallibility here, Jesus, Peter, or the Sanhedrin. Which ones are infallible and to whom?

John, as I said above, there is only one candidate for infallibility – Jesus. But Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, can divinely protect whomever he pleases from officially teaching error.

And clearly, while Jesus was on earth, his authority would have trumped any and all infallibility / authority that he might have bestowed on his apostles.

Ben m said...

John Lollard,

When the Pharisees claimed to sit on Moses' seat, they claimed to have a capital "T" Tradition going back to Moses not found in Scripture and that they could use to bind and loose on people.

Jesus is the one who informs us and makes clear that the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat.

And regardless of the merits of the Pharisees traditions and practices, never once are they held up as an excuse for anyone to reject the Old Testament church itself - the Synagogue.

The established Jewish religion remained the only church for God's people, whatever the sins of the people or their leaders. If anything, it was certain of the Jewish leaders who were rejecting the Jewish faith, not Jesus, who came not to destroy it, but to bring it to perfection.

As for traditions not found in the Bible, Protestants have more than their share !

They claimed that their offices and duties allowed them to rule on issues of the Law, annulling things here and adding things there, as they wished, because after all it was really part of this ancient Tradition anyway.

That has nothing to do with how true tradition works, and certainly nothing to do with how Catholic Tradition works. But why compare the Synagogue to the Church? Did God in the O.T. ever promise the Holy Spirit (the Spirit of Truth) to the Synagogue?

As far as I can tell, you (and other Catholics whom I have asked about this text) are claiming that despite all of this, here Jesus is sincerely encouraging His followers (the crowds and disciples) to obey these Pharisees…

But Jesus did say “all that they tell you, do and observe,” even though they were bad. In any event, there are no provisions in the Bible – anywhere - for Christians, under any circumstances, to break away from the one Church which Christ would build on account of bad Christians or bad leaders.

PeaceByJesus said...

Who determines what kind and how much obeisance is proper to be
shown to others?


If you have to ask... You again are avoiding the issue, which is
not whether or how much obeisance is proper for one to give, but how
much is it proper to receive. Very very rarely do we see this
exampled in the Bible, and if the supposed 1st of many
Popes was against man to bowing down to him, and the example of His
Lord was that the greatest should wash others, then what are his
successors doing reigning like kings as if taking a Caesarian-papacy
seriously?

The point is that Jesus was teaching a lesson in
great humility; Peter’s motive for his protestation is, I
think, rather beside the point.

It is not besides the point, his attitude IS the point.

I'd say it is the Lutherans who provide the contrary attitude! LOL

John, it honestly does amaze me how RCAs resort to treating
evangelicals who hold to SS as if they were Roman Catholics who look
to man over the Bible. There may be some somewhere who treat Luther
etc. as a pope, but if so they disqualify themselves from being
Protestants, or holding Scripture as supreme.

So does your church teach error or not?

No doubt all church do, as Rome allows for itself, as only the IM
is held to be assuredly infallible, and very little of the Bible has
been so defined, while it is incapable of fully understanding every
truth found in the Deposit of Faith, and various degrees of error can
be taught by the Ordinary and General magisteriums. (Rome is also
confused over how many of the plethora of its pronouncements are
infallible).

The real question is whether a church teaches salvific errors
(which is a valid distinction Rome itself makes), and upon
what basis error is determined. In this case, no church can be a true
church if it teaches a false gospel, as it is by faith in that gospel
and thus in the Lord of it that the church has its members. And which
church upheld the Scriptures as the assuredly infallible source of
spiritual truth.

And just as 1Jn. 5:13 appeals to men to examine the authenticity
of themselves in the light of what is written under Divine
inspiration, so that of the church.

In contrast, the assurance that Rome is assuredly infallible is
based upon her own infallible pronoucement, as she infallible teaches
that she is when speaking in accordance with her infallibly defined
formula.

the Scriptures are the supreme material authority on earth.

Even for false churches and heretics?

Possibly, just as holding to the Constitution as the superior
authority does not insure against misuse of it, but error is made
manifest when such are allowed to be tested and corrected by it. And
again, while the teaching office is necessary and valid, the
Scripture show that no man is assuredly infallible based upon his
office, or Rome's formula.

And what is almost always manifests among false churches, such as
deny core salvific truths, is that they formally or effectively hold
another authority as superior to that of the Bible, by which they add
to the Scripture teaching not found therein and can contradict it.

And this is the commonality Rome has with such. And which is why
we typically contend against both rather equally.

PeaceByJesus said...

That last post was for Ben, not all of whose comments were in italics (sorry) but they should be evident.

John Lollard said...

Hey Ben,

Jesus was certainly ware of the Pharisees' claims and is certainly making reference to the Pharisees' claims, but Jesus isn't the way we know that. It was a common claim that the Pharisees made of themselves and every single Jew in Jerusalem was subject to their claims of oral "T"radition going back to Moses.

The way the Pharisees practiced their "T"radition is revealed by Jesus in every single other of His interactions to be exactly as I have described, but we could just as easily turn to rabbinical history of the time. History is continuing to show us the same thing going on with Catholic "T"radition. Ideas originate and develop over time, and then these late, developed ideas are anachronistically claimed to really be derived from the Apostles after all.

That in and of itself wouldn't be that big a deal, if you were willing to hold these ideas up to the light of Scripture and test them by it.

For instance, we are holding the idea of the papacy up to Matthew 23. You are claiming that Jesus is sincerely encouraging His followers to obey the teachings of the scribes and Pharisees, because they sit on the seat of Moses. I'm sure there are some Protestant scholars who would agree. You (as a Catholic) go further, that this "seat of Moses" as an office of the Synagogue is a precursor to the "seat of Peter", providing Biblical support for the notion of a divinely instituted seat of teaching authority handed down through generations based on an oral "T"radition that you claim the Pope still holds.

At least that's what I've gathered is the RC interpretation of this section. Correct me if I'm wrong.

What you haven't addressed or really acknowledged hearing is my objection that the infallible Pope is allegedly already holding this power when Jesus says this. The infallible Pope is right there, being told by Jesus that he needs to obey the Pharisees and the scribes because they sit in the seat of power that the Pope already has inherited. Near as I can gather, between Jesus, Peter and the Pharisees, no more than two can be divinely appointed authorities at the same time, because the divinely appointed Pharisees are going to ask the divinely appointed Pope to stop preaching and the divinely appointed Pope is going to keep preaching.

As you also might not have noticed, these Pharisees who sit in Moses' seat and try to trap Jesus in order to accuse Him do accuse Him and find Him guilty of blasphemy and have Him killed. They find early Christianity heretical and act to have it suppressed. Peter and John, in the passage in Acts 4, do "break away" from the Synagogue in the exact same way Protestants "break away" from Rome.

All this is going to another point, then, than Prots didn't break away from the One True Church®. We broke away from a corrupt institution of human traditions that anathematized the Gospel and suppressed Biblical truth, just like the Pharisees do in Acts 4. The true Church is neither on this mountain nor is it in Jersualem, but consists of those who worship the Father in spirit and in truth.

If the Pharisees, despite having this oral "T"radition from Moses and sitting in his seat and we have to obey them in all matters of the Law, were still able to slap God on the cheek and call Him a blasphemer, then why on earth are you using this as a support to an argument for the papacy?

Which is related to the trilemma here, but is not the trilemma. I think it's my turn to ask a question and get an answer. In Matthew 23, where we have Peter, the Apostles, Jesus, and the Pharisees all in the same place, who here is a teaching authority, and to whom?

I'm not talking about bad behavior, I'm talking about doctrine and authority and logical consistency. Who is an authoritative teacher in this scene and to whom. List as many as you can think of, and the subjects of their authority.

Thanks.
Love in Christ,
John Lollard

PeaceByJesus said...

Another error of the Pharisees which corresponds to that of the Church of Rome, is that they presumed that physical lineage and formal rituals established authenticity. (Jn. 8:39)

However both the Baptist and the Lord Jesus reproved this as presumption, as does the apostle Paul.

"But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? {8} Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance: {9} And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. " (Matthew 3:7-9; cf. Jn. 8:44; Rm. 2;28.29)

The church exists and endures by faith, and its conformity with that which is written, most essentially that being the gospel of grace, with its attestation from God, is the basis for the claim to authenticity, by a person of God or a church.

And if God can raise up from stones sons of Abraham, He can do the like to build his Church of the born again.

Turretinfan said...

"I don't think it behooves you to call someone a name for not knowing something and then do notthing to help them to learn it."

If people make foolish statements, they make themselves look foolish. Statements like "Calvin was a tyrant" are foolish, because not only was Calvin not a tyrant, for most of his life he wasn't even a citizen of Geneva. He was kicked out of the city at one point, and only came back because he was so earnestly entreated to return.

"For instance, the only thing I know about Calvin in Geneva is that he had Servetus executed for his publications. So I myself am pretty ignorant of Calvin's Geneva and from my limited knowledge not too impressed by him."

Calvin himself didn't bring the accusation against Servetus, but let's say he did (since the man who brought it worked for Calvin). Servetus was tried by the lawful authorities of Geneva, none of which were Calvin or under Calvin's control. He was sentenced to be executed by burning at the stake. Calvin appealed on Servetus' behalf that a more merciful mode of execution be used. The authorities of Geneva rejected Calvin's plea for clemency.

"I'm not really interested in Calvin's behavior because I don't place my faith in the mayor of Geneva for binding doctrine or ceremonies that are supposed to save me, but maybe you could give Ben and I some information on exactly how things worked in Geneva so that we will not be so uneducated on the issue?"

Hopefully the above is enough for now. There are plenty of good (and free) English biographies of Calvin that would provide more details. There are also a number of Romanist propaganda materials that try to make you think that Calvin wore his Geneva cap to conceal horns.

- TurretinFan