Monday, December 15, 2014

More Proof For Rome's Version of Mary

Crowds flock to see ‘Virgin Mary’ image in a tree (Fox News)

"A likeness of the Virgin Mary has been spotted on a tree trunk, which locals believe is nothing short of a Christmas miracle, reports the Daily Mail. Though you may have to squint hard to see, the shape is similar to that of some representations of Jesus’ mother, with a gentle head tilt to the side."


125 comments:

Arizona Samson said...

Well this certainly proves that Pius IX and XII were speaking infallibly all along. Far be it from me that I should wish to incur the wrath of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul. (Can anyone tell me what that wrath entails, exactly?)

James Swan said...

This is not "Rome's Mary"

How do you know? Are you an official spokesperson for Rome?

Rome's Mary makes appearances- Rome launches investigations to see if it is a real appearance.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Seems this one touched a nerve for poor guy. What a shame.

Scott Eric Alt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James Swan said...

When that "official spokesperson for Rome" finishes that investigation, then you can post an article.
Until then, you are the one promoting this alleged apparition, not Rome.


I'm just trying to help out. If someone gets healed by praying to the image on the tree, and Rome investigates, you'll realize how helpful this blog post was.

Unless it is of demonic origin, I have no comment.

Don't make promises you obviously can't keep.

DG, you are high fiving James for his sarcastic article. And worse, smirking for having "hit a nerve".

I posted a link to an article, and I posted an excerpt from the article. Other than the title of the blog post, I wrote nothing about this news story (I gave no commentary, positive or negative).

Scott Eric Alt said...

I don't know; I think it's a greater miracle that an image of Mary appeared on James Swan's blog.

James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said...I don't know; I think it's a greater miracle that an image of Mary appeared on James Swan's blog.

Scott, Mary has made many appearances on this blog.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...S.D.G.,"Hit a nerve for poor Guy"?"What a shame"?You don't think it is shameful to mock a person's religion?

Guy Fawkes: Many of your comments are completely toxic and mocking. You have zero credibility when you make this point. Even in this very discussion, you're mocking and insulting. It makes perfect sense that you get booted off other websites. What happened to your "Hebrews 12:14" worldview? I've not seen anything from you even remotely similar to an attempt to live by Hebrews 12:14.

Scott Eric Alt said...

"Mary has made many appearances on this blog."

She must be trying to establish a devotion to Our Lady of Beggars All. Many have entered RCIA after first encountering Mary here.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Well, guy, I suppose your irritated rambling response to me would be more germane to my comment if I had actually said anything about the story or the content of it. So.......

I found your prolific and irate screeds to be amusing like a petulant child's temper tantrum. If James' posts drive you to such extreme angst and anger, perhaps you would be best suited avoiding his block, yes? Certainly you don't think throwing hypocritical temper tantrums is going to accomplish anything.

As it relates to the story itself, whose version of Mary are people flocking to see? Whose view of Mary fuels such silliness? Perhaps you ought to reserve your anger for the superstitious permutations of Rome's mythologized Mary.

Lloyd Cadle said...

It is hard to say you love Jesus, and mock, redicule and disrespect HIs mother. Even common sense tells you not to put down someone's mother, as it is fighting words. And to think that some would do so with the Mother of our Lord?

Those that do so are playing with fire. Unless serious repentance takes place, God's wrath will be upon their heads.

Even when I was a Protestant, I would have been afraid to do it.

Metal Minister said...

I don't think anyone here is ridiculing Mary, mother of Jesus. What is being....ridiculed is too strong a word...teased I guess, is the ridiculous caricature Rome has built up using her name. Some people seem to get incensed to the point of frothing, lathered hysterics at such, which should be setting off alarm bells.

James Swan said...

It is hard to say you love Jesus, and mock, redicule and disrespect HIs mother. Even common sense tells you not to put down someone's mother, as it is fighting words. And to think that some would do so with the Mother of our Lord?

I actually agree with this- but see what Rome has done to Mary as that which is ridiculing and disrespectful by making her into something she was not: a perpetual virgin, immaculately conceived, assumed to heaven, prayed to, etc. And of course, there's the sightings and appearances of Mary- both official and unofficial.

James Swan said...

Oh, my mistake James. Silly me. I thought the cutesy title of the blog post, "Rome's Mary" shouted an unmistakable commentary loud and clear.
I guess I was wrong, huh?


Yes, you're wrong- because in theory, the image of Mary on the tree could possibly be deemed credible in Roman Catholicism.

James Swan said...

Two defenders of Rome- two differing points of view:


Scott Eric Alt said...She must be trying to establish a devotion to Our Lady of Beggars All. Many have entered RCIA after first encountering Mary here.

guy fawkes said...James,
No. Mary has not made many appearances on your blog.


James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...I get thrown off other blogs. True.

And... you probably think it's everybody else and not you who is the problem. Would the priests in the church you attend approve of your cyber-behavior?


Scott Eric Alt said...

"Two defenders of Rome, two differing points of view."

This is why I say Rome should step in and investigate these apparitions. If Mexico could be converted, there's hope for Geneva.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Guy, as is your m.o., apparently, your embellishment of my response is as laughabe as your bombastic railing against it. I certainly didn't giggle as much as I rolled my eyes in bemusement. Just for clarity's sake. Of course, how you take my reaction to your tirade is the real issue. You are not all Catholics, guy. My bemusement at your hissy fit does not equate to a "disrespect" of Catholics in general, or as an approval of doing so. Stop projecting.

You'll notice I didn't say anything to Lloyd's comment, much as I disagree with it. You see, he was able to make his comment without a fantastic display of temper.

As it relates to the article mentioned, you've taken it as an attempt by James to "mock" Catholic "devotion". I would wager that's just more projection on your part. I won't speak for James, but I understood the post to be a silent commentary on the fruit of Rome's Marian dogma. Surely you aren't surprised, in all your vast knowledge, to learn that Protestants don't view Rome's " devotion" to Mary in a positive light.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Guy -

While I am grateful that Mr. Swan lets me post here, I have wondered how much time is wasted by some in bashing the Catholic Church. At times it is down right vicious.

A few years ago, I saw a Catholic bumper sticker, and started listening to Catholic radio. The more that I listened the more I learned that most of the the things that I had heard about the Catholic Church was false. Then I read all of the Catechism, started studying the ECF's and other books.

Shortly thereafter I attended my first Mass and was totally blown away at how Christian it was. I took my wife and 5 children to a Mass and told them that they were going on a field trip to a Catholic Church and that they would see 2,000 years of church history in a one hour Mass. At that time I was on the Board of Directors and teaching a Catechism class in an LCMS church in the Phoenix area. I knew that I would have to resign my membership in a peaceful release and become Catholic. It was a few month process. I am on good terms with all.

A while back on the Steadfast Lutherans website, someone was really bashing the Catholic Church, and a lady posted (a devout Lutheran) commented that the more he bashed the Catholic Church, the more that he was chasing folks to the Catholic Church.

That is happening all over the place now. I don't think that you will see much of Reformation theology in a couple hundred more years. Meanwhile the Catholic Church will just keep plugging along like it has for 2,000 years.

Most of the current Protestant (including Reformed and Lutheran) ecclesial Christian communities will just fizzle and die out.

Metal Minister said...

2000 years of church history? Sorry but that's absolutely false. Historically that is an untenable position. Even some of the best historians claim that the RCC didn't arise until centuries after the death and resurrection of our Lord. Unless you can prove that the apostles viewed Mary as immaculately concieved, and you can prove that they believe she remained a perpetual virgin (the first inkling we have of this is from the Protevangelium of James from some 200 years after Christ), you must be able to prove they believed she was assumed into heaven, you must prove that Peter founded the church in Rome, and that he passed his authority on to his successor, you must prove that the line of papal successorship remained unbroken from Peter until now, you must prove myriad other obviously untrue things before you can simply claim "the 2000 year old church!" The 2000 year old church that Christ founded on His work (not on Peter) is the church of believers. That is the one Christ is still the head of, not a poor copy that claims names and titles reserved for God Himself!

zipper778 said...

Metal Minister said:

"you must prove that the line of papal successorship remained unbroken from Peter until now"

Not to mention that they don't even know how to define "unbroken". I've heard a number of different answers and all of them lead to "well, it looks broken but it isn't." Not very convinving.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Guy, I've made a couple of comments about the actual blog post. I don't have to engage in apologetics to comment on the article. The post itself is not apologetic, per se.

My comments toward you, with the exception of the first, were all in response to your comments toward me which were hardly apologetic in nature. Nor were the ones that caught my attention and precipitated my original comment, so I'd advise you to spend less time being a pot calling kettles names.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Metal Minister - Don't you have a name?

What is a metal minister? Someone that rides a skateboard with a metal barrel earring while preaching?

How about a zipper metal minister?

Metal Minister said...

Why do roman apologists all act like Art Sippo? Ad hominems don't refute what I posted.

zipper778 said...

Lloyd's a hypocrite. He gets after a lot of us for not using our real names when he doesn't have a good answer for us. Yet he turns around and complements guy fawkes quite a bit, even though "guy fawkes" isn't his real name. I guess if I used Lloyd's logic, guy fawkes is like some Arizona politician I've heard about.

Metal Minister said...

I've noticed that as well. But as I said, I've yet to find a Roman apologist that was actually balanced in their approach in the slightest. They buy deeply into Sola Ecclesia, and anyone denying that is automatically "anti-Catholic" and an ignoramus, regardless of the information presented.

zipper778 said...

That's a good observation to make. I have interacted with honest Roman Catholics before, and even though we walked away from the conversation in disagreement we admired certain aspects of each other.

While it would be ideal for someone to embrace Christ alone, at least I know that there is room to continue the conversation later and perhaps the Holy Spirit will lead them home.

Cletus Van Damme said...

Metal Minister,

"Even some of the best historians claim that the RCC didn't arise until centuries after the death and resurrection of our Lord."

Yes and as atheists and liberals will tell you, even some of the best historians claim that "orthodox" Christianity didn't arise until centuries after the death and resurrection of our Lord. I doubt you agree with them.

"Unless you can prove that the apostles viewed..."

Most Protestants hold to some form of development of doctrine. Presumably you subscribe to the WCF or similar confession. If you were to go back in time and present the WCF's teachings to the apostles, would they agree with it immediately, or do you think they might take time to reflect on it before ultimately accepting it?

"The 2000 year old church that Christ founded on His work (not on Peter) is the church of believers. "

False dichotomy. Which is why the catechism (and fathers) reference the rock as both Peter and Christ.

James Swan said...

Guy Fawkes:

You should follow your own advise (your orchestra example) and learn how to interact with others without displaying your innate tendency to hate God and your neighbor.

Once again: in theory- this could be an actual sighting / of Rome's Mary. There's nothing sensational or insulting in the title. It's not my problem that your church has gone beyond the Scriptures and gives validity to appearances of Mary.

James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said...This is why I say Rome should step in and investigate these apparitions. If Mexico could be converted, there's hope for Geneva.

I've not done a lot of looking into this area- how many actual authentic sightings of Mary are there?

If I recall correctly, isn't there also a category in which people are allowed to believe in a particular sighting for their own personal piety? Some time back one of the more well-known Roman apologists posted a picture of an unofficial Mary sighting- giving it a thumbs up. I posted it here on this blog, but can't find it.

James Swan said...

I won't speak for James, but I understood the post to be a silent commentary on the fruit of Rome's Marian dogma.

Yes- I've done this a lot over the years. Sometimes things just speak for themselves.

James Swan said...

Because the Reformers were not attacking Mary's Perpetual Virginity. Or her Assumption, although James and co. are now.

Guy:

If I had the time (or when I have the time), I'm going to compile a compilation of what the magisterial Reformers said about Rome's Mary, and their reaction to the popular Marian piety they were faced with.

In regard to the way Rome's defenders viewed the Reformers take on Mary, see Eck's Enchiridion. Eck’s Enchiridion says “woe ungodly Lutherans” as “hating…all worship of the Christ bearing Virgin…” (See chapter 15).

Lloyd Cadle said...

Did any of the Protestants on this website actually look up and read all of the Early Church Fathers that I cited for the Perpetual Virginity of Mary?

Some folks will refuse to believe history unless they see it with their own eyes. Recorded history doesn't mean anything.

Scott Eric Alt said...

James,
According to Fisheaters, there are 7 that have been deemed "worthy of belief":

https://www.fisheaters.com/apparitions.html

The author of the site goes on to say that unless an apparition has been deemed "worthy of belief," it should be "ignored or approached only with great caution."

Note: Medjugorje is not on the list. I wish that Catholics would pay attention to that note of caution here. Some are overattached to Medjugjorje to the point of getting rancorous toward doubters such as myself. Note what the author of the site says about Medjugorje: she finds the whole propaganda surrounding it "scandalous." I agree with her.

Also, even those apparitions that are "worthy of belief" are not required by the Church as an article of faith. You have to believe in the Immaculate Conception to be a good Catholic; you don't have to believe that Mary appeared to St. Bernadette.

I've not seen that picture you mention with Mary giving the thumbs up.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Guy - My mother was from Düsseldorf and I lived there for a while as a very young child.

A WELS pastor that had recently visited there said that Lutheran churches are mostly museums now and Luther is remembered more for his contributions to the German language than as a Reformer. Germany is now mostly a Catholic country.

Reformed and Lutheran churches are starting to die out. They are now getting replaced by Protestant churches with pastors that have 40 member churches that preach while wearing shorts, a Hawaiian shirt, while sitting down on a chair and sipping a cup of
coffee.

One parishioner told me that she went with a friend to their Protestant church and they had big barrels of grape juice in the back where folks could just help themselves during the service to their own communion anytime they felt moved by the Spirit.

I am not putting them down. It is what it is.



Scott Eric Alt said...

One more thing: I would be very skeptical about anyone who said they believed in an unapproved apparition "for their personal piety." Medjugorje is example enough, in my view, that appariations that have not been thoroughly investigated and approved have the potential, far from improving piety, of leading people down very dangerous paths.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Scott -

Patrick Madrid says it all of the time. If not approved by the Church, don't believe any of it.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, Did Eck say Lutherans hated the doctrine of Mary's Perpetual Virginity? ( They did not! )
Or did he say Lutherans hated all "worship" of her?


Thanks for the questions. John Eck was considered one of the leading Roman apologists of his day. Or the later question you ask, that has already been verified. Of the former question you ask. Eck says:

"Axiom 1:That the heretics wish to receive nothing unless it be expressly proved through the Scriptures.

Therefore the Lutherans will not accept the perpetual virginity of Mary, just as Helvidius, against whom Jerome wrote: because it is not proved in the Scriptures, but more Scriptural passages apparently are on Helvidius' side." (Enchiridion, p. 45).


For the next few pages, Eck responds to this (and other similar doctrinal matters) by arguing "For not everything has been clearly handed down in the Sacred Scriptures, but very many have been left to the Church to determine" (p.46). He calls it "wicked" to depart from what the church holds via the tradition of the Apostles and the holy fathers. Throughout the entire section, the Lutherans are called "heretics."

To bring this all back around- you earlier stated:

Earlier today, I was thumbing through "THE CATHOLIC CONTROVERSY", written in the 1600s by St. Francis de Sales to confront the Lutherans and Calvinists. The book contains the arguments he used to win souls back to the Church when he was Bishop of Geneva. It is a treasury of information on the Sacraments, the Papacy, the Fathers, the Rule of Faith, Tradition, etc. etc.One topic is conspicuously absent from the table of contents though.Not a word is mentioned about Mary. Not a peep about her Virginity or anything else. How is this? Didn't Catholics back then think Mary was important? Didn't they venerate her? Why nothing about her in this anti-Protestant book of apologetics?

If I took the time to actually compile quotes from the Reformers about their view of Rome's Mariolatry, it would be a long post.

James Swan said...

Typo: should read

Of the later question you ask,

Scott Eric Alt said...

Incidentally, it just occurred to me that I had never before thought to wonder whether the Church's statement that such and such an apparition is "worthy of belief" counts as an infallible statement. I didn't think it would, but checked it out, and as it turns out, I was right:

https://www.ewtn.com/expert/answers/apparitions.htm

According to EWTN (article written by Colin Donovan), the Church relies only on "the credibility of evidence as it appeals to human reason" in making such determinations. Naturally, the Church would want to know that the apparition was not handing out information that was contrary to the faith. Apparitions are private revelations, not divine revelations. Catholics can believe or reject as they see fit.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, I notice you said "Lutherans" and not "Luther". Plus, could the term "Lutherans" mean "Protestants" in general? Go ahead and line up all the quotes denying Mary's Perpetual Virginity. I would like to see it. Be sure to find one by Turretin too.

Is it that hard for you to admit I proved you wrong? Consider what you originally asked:

Earlier today, I was thumbing through "THE CATHOLIC CONTROVERSY", written in the 1600s by St. Francis de Sales to confront the Lutherans and Calvinists. The book contains the arguments he used to win souls back to the Church when he was Bishop of Geneva. It is a treasury of information on the Sacraments, the Papacy, the Fathers, the Rule of Faith, Tradition, etc. etc.One topic is conspicuously absent from the table of contents though.Not a word is mentioned about Mary. Not a peep about her Virginity or anything else. How is this? Didn't Catholics back then think Mary was important? Didn't they venerate her? Why nothing about her in this anti-Protestant book of apologetics?

Because the Reformers were not attacking Mary's Perpetual Virginity. Or her Assumption, although James and co. are now. On the contrary, as James so clearly demonstrated last September, Luther and Zwingli, who loathed one another, made common cause against Helvidius for questioning this Marian prerogative.Add Calvin, Turretin and the others to the list. Mary was not a major target for the guys who concocted JBFA or SS. She did not threaten the reformations twin pillars then. Why does she now?


I then demonstrated to you that John Eck, a man deeply involved with the Papacy, a man deeply involved with the Reformation, wrote a book including that which you say wasn't an issue, during the time period of the Reformation. I also included a general statement from the same book in which Eck states, " “woe ungodly Lutherans” as “hating…all worship of the Christ bearing Virgin…” I could post more comments from Eck like, "Therefore the divine Virgin is not a woman as other women, having no favor or prerogative over them as the impious Lutherans blab" (p. 114). Eck didn't write after the fact of the Reformation. He was right there in the middle of the battle.

Would it be too much to ask you, as a gesture of good will and decency at Christmas time, to refrain from using the pejorative term, "Mariolatry"? I mean, someone as articulate as you are could easily rephrase it so as not to chafe, couldn't you? Like I say, it is Christmas. Even soldiers have been known to lay down their arms and come out of the trenches as this holy time.
Everybody knows you are committed to the Reformation. We Catholics would not think you had sold out or compromised with us. It's just that we are not idolaters and don't think the term accurately depicts the truth of our position. And our Mariology is very close to our hearts.It's such a little thing for you to do but would mean so much to us. Thank you for your consideration.


I was chastised once by the moderators of Catholic Answers for using the phrase "Roman Church". The irony is that CA also uses the term.

The bottom line here is that I believe Rome's portrayal of Mary is idolatry. That doesn't mean everything Rome says about Mary is idolatry, but overall, she's been made into an idol, and treated as such (to greater or lesser degrees) by Roman Catholics.

If you can come up with a different term that expresses this belief of mine as succinctly as the term "Mariolatry," I'll consider it.




James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said...James, According to Fisheaters, there are 7 that have been deemed "worthy of belief":

Scott Eric Alt said...The author of the site goes on to say that unless an apparition has been deemed "worthy of belief," it should be "ignored or approached only with great caution."

Scott Eric Alt said... the author of the site says about Medjugorje: she finds the whole propaganda surrounding it "scandalous." I agree with her.

Scott Eric Alt said...Incidentally, it just occurred to me that I had never before thought to wonder whether the Church's statement that such and such an apparition is "worthy of belief" counts as an infallible statement. I didn't think it would, but checked it out, and as it turns out, I was right: https://www.ewtn.com/expert/answers/apparitions.htm

Scott Eric Alt said...According to EWTN (article written by Colin Donovan)


Follow-up questions: Are these interpretations of what the church teaches officially? Are there other Roman Catholic websites that have different conclusions?

Are there official statements on the Vatican website (or elsewhere) so one doesn't have to rely on the interpretations of the middle-man?

I've actually run into a number of people, in person, that gravitate towards Marian apparitions or events (I'm not sure of the exact term to use).

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...I don't hate God. And I don't hate my neighbor, yourself included. Yet I get a sneaky sensation that you don't share my bonhomie

This is tangential, but worthy of a follow-up. In another comment I stated to Guy:

"I'm hopeful you'll actually learn to put your content in a respectable form worthy of interaction if I keep pointing out how toxic you are. From my Reformed perspective, I think that no one really realizes the complete depths of their sin- the Heidelberg Catechism points out in Lord's Day 2, Q & A 5 that people have a natural tendency to hate God and their neighbor. It's only by the work of Christ that anyone comes to see our hatred, and it's only by the Holy Spirit that any of us can even begin to overcome this hatred. When you post your mean-spirited comments- it just demonstrates to me that you hate God and your neighbor."

The idea here is that:

-Every time we violate God's law in deed, thought, or intention of the heart

-Every time we slander our neighbor, whether in deed, thought, or intention of the heart

....We prove that we have a natural tendency to hate God and our neighbor. It's not just you, Guy Fawkes, it's all of us. The difference between you and I, as I see it, is that I'm aware of this natural tendency, and I fight hard against it, often failing. You appear to just post whatever comes to your mind, however toxic. If I were to compile a list of your toxic comments made here on this blog, it would be a long list.

Sir, whoever you are, re-read your comments before pushing the "Publish Your Comment" button. Ask yourself if you are applying your own standard of Hebrews 12:14, or if you are applying Exodus 21:24.



James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James says Marian apparitions go beyond what is written in the Bible.I don't think so as Mary never introduces new doctrine. The message always seems to reiterate what she said at Cana, "Do whatever He tells you". Calling people to pray, do penance, obey the commandments are not going beyond the Bible.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html

Sister Lucia had already given an indication for interpreting the third part of the “secret” in a letter to the Holy Father, dated 12 May 1982:

“The third part of the secret refers to Our Lady's words: ‘If not [Russia] will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated' (13-VII-1917).

The third part of the secret is a symbolic revelation, referring to this part of the Message, conditioned by whether we accept or not what the Message itself asks of us: ‘If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, etc.'.

Since we did not heed this appeal of the Message, we see that it has been fulfilled, Russia has invaded the world with her errors. And if we have not yet seen the complete fulfilment of the final part of this prophecy, we are going towards it little by little with great strides. If we do not reject the path of sin, hatred, revenge, injustice, violations of the rights of the human person, immorality and violence, etc.

And let us not say that it is God who is punishing us in this way; on the contrary it is people themselves who are preparing their own punishment. In his kindness God warns us and calls us to the right path, while respecting the freedom he has given us; hence people are responsible”.

Scott Eric Alt said...

James,

Actually, yes, there are. When the Church officially approves an apparition as "worthy of belief," there is a document to that effect that comes out of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. I'm not sure these are all online. I'd have to check where someone who was doing research into primary sources could track them down.

With respect to the point about no apparition being required as somthing Catholics must believe, that is an assertion that every Catholic commentator I can find supports with section 67 of the Catechism:

"Throughout the ages, there have been so-called "private" revelations, some of which have been recognized by the authority of the Church. They do not belong, however, to the deposit of faith."

Sec. 67 goes on to say this: "Christian faith cannot accept "revelations" that claim to surpass or correct the Revelation of which Christ is the fulfillment, as is the case in certain non-Christian religions and also in certain recent sects which base themselves on such 'revelations.'"

That is why Catholics must be very standoffish toward any supposed apparition that has not been fully investigated. Again Catechism 67: ":Guided by the Magisterium of the Church, the sensus fidelium knows how to discern and welcome in these revelations whatever constitutes an authentic call of Christ or his saints to the Church."

The Magisterium makes these determinations, not individual Catholics. Occasionally, the CDF actually does come out and specifically warn Catholics about a particular apparition that a lot of people are gravitating toward. Medjugorje is one such example. Just earlier this year, the CDF specifically said that Catholics must not participate in any conference that assumes the truth of Medjgorje:

http://wdtprs.com/blog/2013/11/cdf-directs-clerics-faithful-not-to-attend-conferences-favorable-to-medjugorje/

You are right that sometimes secondary sources can disagree with each other or be mistaken. Fr Z's site is valuable on this story because he actually provides a scanned image of the cover letter to the document in question.

It is also undeniably true that Catholics sometimes ignore what the Church says, or don't bother to know or find out what the Church says, or trust flawed information. That doesn't mean that the truth can't be known and found out; it just means that people, as a whole, can be self-willed and ignorant and lazy. A funny thing called human sin; if you have any ideas what can be done about that, would sure like to hear them. Personally, I'm less troubled by people making mistakes than by those who seem incorrectible when you point out that it's a mistake.

I linked to Fisheaters because (1) it was a readily available source for me to find to answer your question; (2) although it can be a little Traditionalist for my own taste, in my experience the author takes a great deal of care to get her facts right and not claim more than there is warrant for.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, I yanked this off of Wiki. No searching needed.

Perhaps you need to expand your Reformation library and purchase Dr. Eck's book.

Scott Eric Alt said...

Correction to what I said before. There is not an official document of approval that comes out of the CDF. Instead, there is a declaration of approval that is made by the bishop of the diocese where the apparition occurred, made with the consnt of the Vatican. Any official documents, therefore, would likely reside with the diocese in question.

Scott Eric Alt said...

http://wafusa.org/the-story-of-fatima/

The text of the bishop's declaration "worthy of belief" with respect to Fatima is quoted at the bottom of this link.

Scott Eric Alt said...

Guy Fawkes,
I have a copy of de Montfort's True Devotion. I used it to prepare for my consecration 3 years ago. Actually, I learned about it from Fisheaters---a site which I have a great admiration for since it helped me to solve a lot of difficulties I had when I was in the process of converting.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, I really didn't think you would drop the childish taunt of Mariolatry. It isn't really very nice, is it? Just snarly. Maybe even a bit " mocking and toxic"?
I was just testing you. I figured, "hey, it's Christmas, it couldn't hurt to see if the old Swan has any sense of..."It is your blog and nobody can force you to do anything you don't want to do. ( And if you have to be forced, forget it ).


Guy Fawkes:The bottom line here is that I believe Rome's portrayal of Mary is idolatry. That doesn't mean everything Rome says about Mary is idolatry, but overall, she's been made into an idol, and treated as such (to greater or lesser degrees) by Roman Catholics.If you can come up with a different term that expresses this belief of mine as succinctly as the term "Mariolatry," I'll consider it.

guy fawkes said...Were you able to find that quote from Eck about not debating publicly about those two topics I mentioned? I found it in a book I found at either the U. of Portland or the library in the priory of the Dominicans at their church in Portland. Alas, I am far from there

I was not aware that I was previously charged with looking something up concerning John Eck. Recall though: it's the policy of this blog that if you bring a fact to the table, it's your responsibility to provide verification and documentation, not mine.

FWIW, chapter 28 of Eck's Enchiridion argues that "Disputations with heretics are not to be held."

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...Jesus came to us through Mary. The best way to go to Jesus is through Mary.

The Gospels do not testify to this fact. Go through all the accounts of the people Jesus interacted with, and they did not first check in with Mary. Neither the man with leprosy or the paralytic in Luke 5 went first to Mary. Neither did the demon possessed man in Luke 8. Nor did the ruler in Matthew 9. etc.

John 6:44 says: No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. It does not say: No one can come to Me unless hey go through Mary; and I will raise him up on the last day.

John 10:27-29 says: My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. It does not say:

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. Mary who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, You wrote,
"We prove that we have a natural tendency to hate God and our neighbor.'WOW! Hate God? Maybe flee from God. But hate? Hmmmmmmm?Has that been your experience with your fellow members of the human race? Are those your sentiments?Not mine.


You illustrate exactly what I said previously: The difference between you and I is that I'm aware of the natural tendency to hate God and man, and I fight hard against it, often failing. You just post whatever comes to your mind, however toxic.

When we sin against God, we display that we don't really believe in him. If you don't want to use the word hate, use whatever word you want. Sin is opposed to God. That which is opposed to God is, in my opinion, a form of hate.

The good news is that Christ covers me in his righteousness, and works in my life to conform me into his image. A person that realizes the depth of their sin against a holy God is a person that rejoices in the work of Christ.

Scott Eric Alt said...

Guy Fawkes,
Yes, I will look at those sites. I like Jerome because he was a hermit and a curmudgeon, which suits my own temperament---and it doesn't hurt that he was also a biblical scholar who translated the Bible into Latin.

Scott Eric Alt said...

I was about to say what Guy Fawkes said. One may say, "I don't need to go through Mary to get to Christ," but Christ went through Mary to get to us. He didn't have to; he chose to out of the abundance of his love and grace. So I choose to go to Christ through Mary---not because salvation demands it, but because love impels it.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, But the Gospels do indeed testify to the fact that Jesus did come to us through Mary, yes or no? Why? He could have come some other way. But He didn't. Jesus loves Mary. I want to be like Jesus. Don't you?

Hospital records would probably indicate that you came to me through your mother, yet the best way for me to get to you is not by going to your mother first.

Your comments demonstrate to me what i documented here:

http://beggarsallreformation.blogspot.com/2006/07/young-luther-saints-and-virgin-mary.html



James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said...
I was about to say what Guy Fawkes said. One may say, "I don't need to go through Mary to get to Christ," but Christ went through Mary to get to us. He didn't have to; he chose to out of the abundance of his love and grace. So I choose to go to Christ through Mary---not because salvation demands it, but because love impels it.


By this logic, one should go through Saint Anne to get to Mary to get to Jesus.

Your paradigm appears to me to be an example of post hoc ergo proctor hoc. Mary certainly played her role in bringing the Messiah into the world, but I don't see any biblical evidence to suggest that once that role was fulfilled she then took on another role of being the one whom people go through to get to Jesus. If she did have such a role, why isn't it mentioned in the New Testament epistles?

Scott Eric Alt said...

James,
In one sense you are begging the question: Why does it need to be mentioned in the New Testament? (We can cite fallacies till the sun goes down.) But I wouldn't want to carry that too far. Jesus's first public miracle was the result of the fact that the wedding guests went through Mary. Christ did not rebuke the wedding guests, saying, "Why don't you come directly to me? Mary is not my intercessor." This is an example of what happens when Catholics "go to Jesus through Mary." It is not that they must, that there is some command for them to do so, that they can't go directly to Jesus. In fact, we go directly to Jesus at every Mass. But if Scripture does not say, "You may go through Mary," neither does it say, "You must not go through Mary." So appealing to Scripture gets us precisely nowhere here. It's an argument from silence.

Arizona Samson said...

"You have been duped by a system that makes both man and God to be something other than what the Bible and common sense say."

This courtesy of the biblical exegete who wrote this:

"But nobody gets to heaven unless she prays for them."

Stephen Galanis said...

"And Mary is our mother. John 19 says so."

Actually, that comment was directed particularly to John, and there is no warrant to think it has a wider meaning. To infer it applies to all Christians means you're making quite the logical leap. You're reading something that's just... not there.

It would also be useful to look into the culture of adoption in the Roman world at the time. At the very least, 19:27 was referring to the normal familial relationship as indicated by "From that time on, this disciple took her into his home."

Lloyd Cadle said...

Guy -

And in that Jewish OT culture, the Queen was always the Kings mother, not his wife.

Good stuff Guy!

Lloyd Cadle said...

Guy - As you noted above, Rev 12:17 says that the dragon made war against the woman (Mary) and her offspring, those that keep the commandments of God.

Because Mary is the mother of Jesus, and as believers we have been adopted into the kingdom of God, and we keep the commandments, according to the text, Mary is our spiritual mother as well.

If you don't honor Mary as mother you are breaking the 4th commandment.

With the Church it is not Mary or Jesus, you have both. It is truly wonderful to have such a great mother in heaven. As believers, we can rejoice in having a mother in heaven that loves her children even more than our earthly mothers. And she always leads us to her Son. As Mary says, just do whatever He tells you.

We had our Knights Christmas party last night. Today another Christmas party, followed by our Cards, as they attempt to beat Seattle for best record in NFC.

We are attempting this with our 3rd string Q.B. Needless to say, the whole state is going nuts for the Cards!

James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said... James,
In one sense you are begging the question: Why does it need to be mentioned in the New Testament? (We can cite fallacies till the sun goes down.)


Then it follows that in another sense, I'm not begging the question. If the infallible deposit of faith is limited to the Sacred Scriptures, then Mary's role beyond bearing the Savior is nowhere found in the epistles, and I'm not obligated to give it any credence. This goes right to the heart: Rome's defenders go beyond the Scriptures to establish some of their peculiar beliefs, and then work backward trying to find allusions to those beliefs in the Scriptures. While not one of the infallible Roman sources, Karl Keating says in regard to this Marian issue, "True, Scriptural proofs for this are lacking" (Catholicism and Fundamentalism, p. 279). When you say, " So appealing to Scripture gets us precisely nowhere here. It's an argument from silence"- it gets us nowhere because neither of us affirms the authority structures of the other. You don't believe the Scriptures are the sole infallible rule of faith (sola scriptura), and I don't believe the church is the sole rule of faith (sola ecclesia) determining what Scripture means and what the vague category of Tradition includes.

You stated earlier, "So I choose to go to Christ through Mary---not because salvation demands it, but because love impels it." Keep the phrase "salvation demands it" in mind. Here you state,

It is not that they must, that there is some command for them to do so, that they can't go directly to Jesus. In fact, we go directly to Jesus at every Mass. But if Scripture does not say, "You may go through Mary," neither does it say, "You must not go through Mary

What I see you saying is that you have a choice to have Mary involved in your eventual salvation. True, you could pray to Jesus directly- Mary is not necessarily needed, but it's your choice impelled by love.


On the other hand, Guy Fawkes says, "nobody gets to heaven unless she prays for them." Karl Keating says, "No grace accrues to us without her intercession" (Catholicism and Fundamentalism, p. 279). So while you choose to go through Mary "not because salvation demands it", Guy and Keating say you don't have a choice- Mary is involved in your salvation. True, Keating does qualify his statement that one isn't "obliged to ask for all graces through her or that her intercession is intrinsically necessary." what Keating appears to mean is that whether you ask for it or not, Mary is helping out. I point this out- the comparrison of your words to Guy's to Keatings's- to make one of my favorite points- that Rome's defenders are often functional Protestants, interpreting things however they want to.

Without scriptural support, the best Keating can offer is that there is"nothing in the doctrine that contradicts Christ's role as the one mediator." And this is Rome's answer for many of her peculiarities that lack Scriptural support. I can't play logic games like this with theology (probably in the same way you don't want to respond to the logical fallacy I noted previously). I'd rather simply stick with what God's Spirit actually says in 1 Tim. 2:5.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...If you don't honor Mary as mother you are breaking the 4th commandment.

Mr. Cadle, since you claim to be fluent in Dispensationalism, Reformed and Lutheran theology, and now in Roman Catholic theology, you must certainly be familiar with the basic idea of defining terms.

I think parents are worthy of honor. I think Mary is blessed and worthy of honor. The question is... what does it mean to honor Mary? What does Lloyd Cadle mean? To attribute things to her like perpetual virginity, bodily assumption and the immaculate conception? To pray to her? This does not "honor" the biblical Mary.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James -

Did you get married by your pastor? Where is that in the Bible? Where is rapture in Bible? Where is asking Jesus into your heart in the Bible. Where is being born again by a sinners prayer in the Bible? Where is the word Bible in the Bible? Where is Baptism by immersion in the Bible? Where is dispensationalism in the Bible? I could go on and on.

Ahhhhh, sola scripura traditions abound.......these are the traditions of men, not the traditions of the ECF's, nor the Bible.

James Swan said...

Mr. Cadle:

So, am I to assume by your response that you have no idea what the word "honor" means in the various denominational backgrounds you claim expertise in? If you don't know what such a simple word word means in your various previous affiliations, please cease claiming that you are theologically skilled in your previous church's theological beliefs.

Scott Eric Alt said...

James,

I find it interesting that you first seem to want to posit a conflict between myself and Karl Keating, but then note the qualification on his part which would harmonize my statement with his. When you quote the qualification of Keating, Keating sure sounds like he's saying the very same thing I did.

Ken said...

Guy / Jim wrote:
But nobody gets to heaven unless she [Mary] prays for them.

Where do you get that in Scripture?

Don't give us Louis Marie De Montfort - 1673-1716.

He is nothing and we don't accept his writing as authoritative and we don't care if there is an imprimature from the Pope of that day (which counts for nothing) and this teaching is heresy and contradictory to 1 Timothy 2:5

Ken said...

You guys keep writing that the woman in Revelation 12 is Mary.

But she had pain in childbirth - Revelation 12:2

proof that the Perptetual Virginity dogma "en partu" (during birth) is wrong.

Your dogma is based on Gnostic thinking and denigration of sex within marriage (Origen, who castrated himself, Clement of Alexandria, a weird dude, Jerome, Augustine in his guilt for his fornication before his conversion.)

Scott Eric Alt said...

I can harmonize Keating and myself another way, too. Suppose there lives, somewhere, an atheist named Steve. Although Steve's an atheist, he's a friend of mine, and I pray for his salvation. Steve has never asked for my prayers---he might even be greatly offended to know that I'm doing so---but I pray anyway.

Suppose, then, that one day Steve is in a car accident and, near the point of death, he finds it in his heart to repent and believe in God and turn himself over to the mercy of Christ.

You could say that Steve did not make it to heaven without my prayers---even though he didn't ask for them and strictly speaking was never obligated to ask for them.

Now, as a Calvinist, I imagine that you might say that God only saved Steve through my prayers by ordaining before all eternity that I would pray for Steve. And assuming that to be true, there's no difficulty at all with the analogy, if you believe that before all eternity, God ordained that Mary would pray for us.

We don't have to ask Mary to pray for us before she will pray for us. It is, nevertheless, nice and efficacious to ask for her prayers---just as it would have been nice and efficacious if Steve had lived long enough after converting in order to ask me to pray.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said... Did you get married by your pastor? Where is that in the Bible? Where is rapture in Bible? Where is asking Jesus into your heart in the Bible. Where is being born again by a sinners prayer in the Bible? Where is the word Bible in the Bible? Where is Baptism by immersion in the Bible? Where is dispensationalism in the Bible? I could go on and on. Ahhhhh, sola scripura traditions abound.......these are the traditions of men, not the traditions of the ECF's, nor the Bible.

While I'm waiting for Mr. Cadle to present his cross-denominational knowledge concerning the word "honor", I'll address this non-sequitur directed toward me. The comment appears to be a response to what I addressed to Mr. Alt (see above). There I noted Karl Keating admits there is no Scriptural precedent for Mary's special role beyond giving birth to the Messiah. Mr. Cadle uses the standard I mentioned a few days ago in my post, "How to Read a Blog Entry and Make a Comment" (7. Always ask yourself if the criticism you're making refutes your own position as well). I can appreciate this- at least it's enlightening to see that Mr. Cadle understands this logical apologetic paradigm on some level.

Mr. Cadle asks me specifically where a number of things are in the Bible, thus appearing to attribute all of them to me. Mr. Cadle appears to think I'm waiting each day for the rapture to occur. Hint to Mr. Cadle: I'm Reformed. Mr. Cadle asks "Where is asking Jesus into your heart in the Bible?" Hint to Mr. Cadle: I'm Reformed. Mr. Cadle asks: "Where is dispensationalism in the Bible?" Hint to Mr. Cadle: I'm Reformed. Mr. Cadle asks, "Where is Baptism by immersion in the Bible?" Hint to Mr. Cadle: I'm not a Reformed Baptist. So, in the majority of instances in which Mr. Cadle uses: Always ask yourself if the criticism you're making refutes your own position as well, they don't apply to my theological affiliation.

He asks also "Did you get married by your pastor? Where is that in the Bible?" I'll assume Mr. Cadle isn't asking whether or not the concept of marriage is taught in the Bible (it is, as early as Gen. 2), but rather really does mean to ask about the wedding ceremony being led by a pastor and the inference that such is an extra-biblical concept.
Mr. Cadle's question misses the fact that Protestant churches do indeed have tradition, even traditions like wedding ceremonies- but these are not infallible and dogmatic traditions. The attributes of Mary that have no Scriptural precedence have to be believed as God-given truth as essential to the Gospel. I freely admit my own church has traditions (like wearing a suit on Sunday), but these traditions are not part of the Gospel.

James Swan said...

Scott Eric Alt said...James, I find it interesting that you first seem to want to posit a conflict between myself and Karl Keating, but then note the qualification on his part which would harmonize my statement with his. When you quote the qualification of Keating, Keating sure sounds like he's saying the very same thing I did

The reason I quoted Keating further was because I always seek to be fair to a context and to present authors for what they are actually saying.

Of course you could now harmonize what you said with what Keating wrote, after the fact. According to you previously, your salvation doesn't demand that you go through Mary to Jesus. According to Keating, your salvation is dependent on going through Mary to Jesus. If you want to revise your earlier statements so as to harmonize the two of you, that's fine. I've made my point.

James Swan said...

By the way Mr. Alt: Thanks for the information about Marian appearances, sources, etc.

James Swan said...

Ken said...You guys keep writing that the woman in Revelation 12 is Mary.But she had pain in childbirth - Revelation 12:2. proof that the Perptetual Virginity dogma "en partu" (during birth) is wrong.

Well Ken, they could argue it's symbolic pain, but then to be consistent, it would have to be a symbolic child as well. I doubt our Roman friends want be consistent.

Cletus Van Damme said...

James,
"If the infallible deposit of faith is limited to the Sacred Scriptures, then Mary's role beyond bearing the Savior is nowhere found in the epistles, and I'm not obligated to give it any credence."

"Nowhere found in the epistles" is precisely what's in question. Non-Calvinists assert Calvinism is "nowhere found in the epistles". Jews assert apostolic and Christian exegetical conclusions are "nowhere found" in the OT.

Secondly, even if it is granted it is "nowhere found in the epistles", that is different than saying it is "contrary to the epistles" - the latter I presume you would hold as an indicator of grave heresy, the former I presume you would grant much more latitude.

"Rome's defenders go beyond the Scriptures to establish some of their peculiar beliefs, and then work backward trying to find allusions to those beliefs in the Scriptures."

And a Jew could say the apostles and Christians go beyond the OT Scriptures to establish some of their peculiar beliefs and then work backwards. Why do you think Rome's "peculiar beliefs" are first defined and only afterwards Scriptural warrant is sought? Dogmatic definitions often cite Scripture in support and the development of the beliefs themselves (often for centuries) contains appeals to Scripture by its proponents.

"I don't believe the church is the sole rule of faith (sola ecclesia) determining what Scripture means and what the vague category of Tradition includes."

The RC rule of faith is not sola ecclesia but sola STM-triad.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James - Let's briefly take a look at some of the teachings of the Reformed that they teach as Gospel, dogma or have Scriptural precedence, but are un-Scriptural, and the teachings of men:

1. Authority: The Reformed have no authority to start their particular brand of ecclesial Christian community (referred to as ecc hereafter) any more than the other ecc's of post reformation era under the teachings of men like Chuck Smith, Martin Luther, Calvin, etc. God started a Church in Matt 16:18, not a bunch of them, all teaching different doctrines under sola scriptura. The Reformed have no Apostolic authority, 2 Tim 2:2.

2. The Reformed adhere to the un-scriptural sola Scriptura, a teaching that the Bible itself does not teach, 2 Thes 2:15, right along with all the other ecc's.

3. The Reformed teach as doctrines the man made Gospel of limited atonement and irresistible grace.

4. The Reformed and many other ecc's teach as doctrines the un-scriptural man made understanding of Baptism as nothing more than a sign, thing signified and a seal.

5. The Reformed and many other ecc's teach the Eucharist as nothing more than a memorial, a symbol, sign, and thing signified. Some even use grape juice. All against the teachings of Christ.

6. The Reformed and the other ecc's do not have valid Sacrament's as they do not have Apostolic Succession and authority to do such, as only the Catholics and Orthodox have this authority.

The above referenced list are only a few examples of man made traditions that have no Scriptural basis and are taught as God given truth and Gospel by the Reformed and the other numerous ecc's, post reformation era.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Just for Clarification's sake, since our Catholic friends seem to be suffering from a lack of reading comprehension, no one said Jerome or Augustine had a low view of marriage. They had a low view of SEX. The two are not synonymous.

James Swan said...

Cletus Van Damme said..."Nowhere found in the epistles" is precisely what's in question. Non-Calvinists assert Calvinism is "nowhere found in the epistles". Jews assert apostolic and Christian exegetical conclusions are "nowhere found" in the OT.

These are category errors. "Calvinism" proper is simply another term for a type of systematic theology as put forth by John Calvin, exegeted out of what the text of Scripture says. Calvin took the Bible and attempted to explain it in a systematic way. He didn't start with church history or some vague notion of "Tradition" and then appeal back to the scriptures to find verses that may possibly be allusions to an extra-biblical tradition. Likewise, the Jews look at O.T. texts and await their Messiah, and reject the New Testament which interprets the Old Testament. If they reject the Word of God, of course they're going to reject the doctrines found in the New Testament.

Cletus Van Damme said...Secondly, even if it is granted it is "nowhere found in the epistles", that is different than saying it is "contrary to the epistles" - the latter I presume you would hold as an indicator of grave heresy, the former I presume you would grant much more latitude.

In regard to Mary's role as mediatrix (beyond her role of giving birth to the Messiah), I find this "nowhere found in the epistles" and contrary to the epistles as well. 1 Tim 2:5 "For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." There is only one unique role as mediator, and Christ fills that unique role. If, as the defenders of Rome have been arguing, Mary has some sort of sine qua non role [Guy Fawkes says, "nobody gets to heaven unless she prays for them." Karl Keating says, "No grace accrues to us without her intercession" (Catholicism and Fundamentalism, p. 279] , then that sine qua non role is contrary to 1 Tim. 2:5.

Cletus Van Damme said...And a Jew could say the apostles and Christians go beyond the OT Scriptures to establish some of their peculiar beliefs and then work backwards.

This is the same category error and it ignores the fact of the writings of the New Testament.

James Swan said...


Cletus Van Damme said... Why do you think Rome's "peculiar beliefs" are first defined and only afterwards Scriptural warrant is sought?
Because if you follow back this discussion, it's a conclusion I've mentioned based on a statment from one of Rome's apologists: Karl Keating. It's he who says "True, Scriptural proofs for [Mary as Mediatrix] are lacking. If as Keating says, a proof text is lacking, and then I read Roman Catholic apologetic works that present verses that may be allusions to Mary's special role, how is it not reading something back into the text?

Or take Purgatory for example: Roman Catholic scholar Zachary Hayes said,

"Thus, Roman Catholic exegetes and theologians at the present time would be inclined to say that although there is no clear textual basis in Scripture for the later doctrine of purgatory, neither is there anything that is clearly contrary to that doctrine. In this they differ from those Protestant theologians who hold not only that the doctrine of purgatory has no scriptural basis but that, in fact, it is contrary to the clear teaching of Scripture" [Four Views On Hell (Grand Rapids, Zondervan, 1996), p.107]

"Is there some basis in the Scriptures for the doctrine of purgatory, or is there not? If we are looking for clear and unambiguous statements of the doctrine, we will look in vain... we might better ask if anything in Scripture initiated the development that eventually led to the doctrine of purgatory" (p.104).

Rome's method, as far as I can tell, is the opposite of what Calvin did: Rome has extra-biblical traditions that develop, and then the Bible is brought in to find verses that may allude to the tradition. The operating principle is typically as Catholic Answers states: " There is then no problem with the Church officially defining a doctrine which is not explicitly in Scripture, so long as it is not in contradiction to Scripture."

Cletus Van Damme said... Dogmatic definitions often cite Scripture in support and the development of the beliefs themselves (often for centuries) contains appeals to Scripture by its proponents.

That's what I've been saying: doctrines develop, and then Rome's defenders look in the Bible to find allusions to the developed doctrine at best, or at worst say the church can define a doctrine not explicitly in Scripture as long as it doesn't contradict Scripture.

Cletus Van Damme said..."I don't believe the church is the sole rule of faith (sola ecclesia) determining what Scripture means and what the vague category of Tradition includes." The RC rule of faith is not sola ecclesia but sola STM-triad.

Yes, the defenders of Rome always balk at the phrase "sola ecclesia." Here's why I use it: Rome claims the ability to determine the canon. Rome claims the ability to determine Traditions. If an entity has the power to determine what is or is not Scripture or Tradition, that entity logically is the ultimate authority.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...Cletus,Good point to James.Our Protestant friends should read the last lines of Matthew's Gospel that says we are to obey *ALL* of Christ's teachings.Then they should read the last lines of John's Gospel that says all of Christ's teaching are not written down in the Bible.Then they should put 2 and 2 together.

Yes, I've put Rome's 2 and 2 together, and came up with “Tradition” as Viewed by Popular Roman Catholic Apologists… and a Response

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...Ken, The Woman of Rev 12 is in travail, yes.

What sort of travail?

Are Rome's defenders saying the travail was symbolic? Here's what happens to the text of Revelation 12:

The woman is Revelation 12 is literally Mary. The woman in Revelation 12 literally gives birth to a literal child at a literal point in time. When the text says, "She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth," this is not literally what happened when she was literally giving birth.




James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...Where in Protestantism do we see anyone giving up marriage and family for the sake of the Kingdom? Where do we see anyone following Jesus' admonition to the rich young man ( who had really kept the commandments as he said ) giving up all worldly goods in order "to be perfect"?

I would only take you seriously on this point if you are actually following this admonition. If not why? Why aren't you giving up your family for the sake of the kingdom? Why aren't you doing what Jesus told the young ruler to do? Perhaps it's because you're too busy commenting on blog posts.

Cletus Van Damme said...

James,

""Calvinism" proper is simply another term for a type of systematic theology as put forth by John Calvin, exegeted out of what the text of Scripture says."

Yes and RCism exegetes what the text of Scripture says in support of its doctrines. You disagree with that exegesis. If that entails RC doctrines are "nowhere found", then I fail to see how those who disagree with Calvinist exegesis does not entail Calvinist doctrine is "nowhere found".

"Calvin took the Bible and attempted to explain it in a systematic way. He didn't start with church history or some vague notion of "Tradition" and then appeal back to the scriptures to find verses that may possibly be allusions to an extra-biblical tradition."

Did he appeal back to the scriptures to find verses that allude to sola scriptura and the identification of the canon? Did the apostles appeal back to the OT to find verses that allude to their teachings?

"If they reject the Word of God, of course they're going to reject the doctrines found in the New Testament."

They reject the NT is the Word of God in the first place. Because they view the NT's teachings and apostolic interpretations as "nowhere found" in the OT. Just as you reject RC teaching and interpretations as "nowhere found" in the OT/NT.

"I find this "nowhere found in the epistles" and contrary to the epistles as well."

Ok.

"it ignores the fact of the writings of the New Testament."

Cart before the horse - the Jews don't accept NT writings because they consider apostolic interpretations of the OT "nowhere found" in the OT. It's akin to me replying your contention that RC doctrine is "nowhere found" ignores the fact of the authority of the Magisterium and Tradition. You're not swayed.

I said "Why do you think Rome's "peculiar beliefs" are first defined and only afterwards Scriptural warrant is sought?"

You replied with RC statements like "If we are looking for clear and unambiguous statements of the doctrine, we will look in vain". A lack of "clear and unambiguous statements" does not entail "nowhere found" nor does it entail Scriptural appeal is only sought after the fact.

"Rome has extra-biblical traditions that develop, and then the Bible is brought in to find verses that may allude to the tradition. "

Extra-biblical is precisely what's in question. During the centuries of development, Scriptural appeal is given (even if not necessarily "clear and unambiguous"). These doctrines don't just fall out of the sky, get defined, and then Rome scrambles to offer Scriptural support. Scripture is part of the rule of faith - it guides development and discussions of the doctrines as they mature, which is why appeals are made in the definitional statements themselves.

"There is then no problem with the Church officially defining a doctrine which is not explicitly in Scripture, so long as it is not in contradiction to Scripture."

As I said above, I think you would agree there is a difference between a doctrine silent in scripture vs a doctrine contrary to Scripture. The former you would not condemn as heretical I presume.

"That's what I've been saying: doctrines develop, and then Rome's defenders look in the Bible to find allusions to the developed doctrine at best"

But this is backwards as I said - part of the development itself includes that Scriptural appeal and debate/investigation. The fact that perhaps *additional* Scriptural support is sought after the definition does not entail it is *only* sought after the fact. If passage x,y,z are part of development leading to definition, then passages a,b,c are used as additional support later, that doesn't nullify x,y, z were appealed to previously.

Cletus Van Damme said...

"Yes, the defenders of Rome always balk at the phrase "sola ecclesia." Here's why I use it: Rome claims the ability to determine the canon. Rome claims the ability to determine Traditions. If an entity has the power to determine what is or is not Scripture or Tradition, that entity logically is the ultimate authority."

The apostles determined what was valid interpretations of S and T. Does that mean they had ultimate authority over the OT? The canon is formed of 66 books according to you, and each is necessary in authoritatively interpreting the rest. Does that mean each book has ultimate authority over the others? Or does it mean they have parallel authority? Textual criticism has helped determine the scope and extent of the identified canon in Protestantism (hence asterisked passages) - does that mean textual criticism and scholarship is the ultimate authority?

If sola ecclesia was true, Rome could just make up things out of thin air. It could have just dropped books from the canon at Trent (and according to Protestantism, it should have in order to bolster support for its doctrines that clearly contradict certain books) but apparently didn't just to keep up appearances. It could call the book of mormon inspired tomorrow. It could say the Council of Nicaea never happened, or say that council actually supported Arianism instead of condemning it. It can't do any of those things because it's the servant of S and T. Just because it authoritatively interprets S and T does not make it overlord. That's why all 3 are needed and work together.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...James - Let's briefly take a look at some of the teachings of the Reformed that they teach as Gospel, dogma or have Scriptural precedence, but are un-Scriptural, and the teachings of men:

The simple response to Mr. Cadle's list is that he is arguing against an interpretation of principles exegeted out of the Scriptures, not something being read back into the Scriptures (like the assumption and immaculate conception of Mary). The Scriptures do attest to the nature and authority of the church, the Scripture itself does attest to its nature, the Scriptures do attest to the work of the Holy Spirit in regeneration, the Scriptures do attest to the nature of the sacrament of baptism and the Lord's Supper.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, Catholics do not go beyond scripture to establish Mary's Perpetual Virginity. I don't believe you could have read all the stuff posted by the Catholics on this over past week or so.

Previously here I stated: "It's not my problem that your church has gone beyond the Scriptures and gives validity to appearances of Mary." Remember how you responded? "James says Marian apparitions go beyond what is written in the Bible.I don't think so as Mary never introduces new doctrine." Then I posted what Rome's Mary actually said, and not a peep out of you in response. Odd.

Then I interacted with Mr. Alt and noted Keating's point that there isn't scriptural proof for Mary as mediatrix, and that Rome's defenders have therefore gone beyond the Bible. Remeber- it's Keating who said, "True, Scriptural proofs for this are lacking." Then Cletus took up the gaunlet, and you patted him on the back stating, "Our Protestant friends should read the last lines of Matthew's Gospel that says we are to obey *ALL* of Christ's teachings. Then they should read the last lines of John's Gospel that says all of Christ's teaching are not written down in the Bible. Then they should put 2 and 2 together. So, in response you posit the partim-partim view of which I provide my in-depth response in the link I posted. Not a peep from you on this either.

Now, you triumphantly declare perpetual virginity is exegeted out of the Scriptures, and not, (as I would contend) something first introduced in the later historical record and then read back into the Bible. In this same discussion I pointed out how inconsistent you are in interpreting Revelation 12. As I scroll through your comments, there's not a peep from you on this either.

guy fawkes said...Ken, ( bless his heart ) tried manfully but failed miserably to prove his case. We Catholics had all the arguments from scripture, Tradition, common sense and your Reformers.

I call this the "Hooray for Our Side! Defense." It's typical of Rome's defenders. The way I see it, you're now responsible for all the corrections that Ken offered you.

Mary's Immaculate Conception is a slam dunk from scripture too.

It's a slam dunk for extra-biblical ideas being read back into the Bible.

Praying to her is nowhere condemned in the Bible. So you shouldn't accuse us of going beyond the Bible as the Bible shows the saints in heaven receiving and offering our prayers to God.

Bigfoot hiding in the bushes watching the Wedding Feast at Cana is nowhere condemned in the Bible either. In fact, some think the noises Sasquatch makes are prayers, so the saints may hear them as well.

That leaves the Assumption to explain and that is a case of development of doctrine. D.O.D. is a biblical concept. We see it in both testaments. An O.T. example would be of how the understanding of the Messiah developed from Gen 3 onward through the centuries. In the NT, we see Peter given a vision about kosher and non kosher animals. He thought about it and decided it was about men and not just food. He then went to receive Cornelius into the Church. Later, at the Council of Jerusalem, the Church decreed Gentiles need not be circumcised. See how the whole thing developed from a vision of a net full of animal?

Yes, you guys will take anything to develop a doctrine. The Transitus Mariae is the earliest source that speaks of Mary's bodily assumption... a condemned apocryphal book is the earliest substantiation for Mary's bodily assumption. The first church father to teach it was Gregory of Tours in 590 AD. The Transitus Mariae dates from the end of the fifth century.

Great just great.





James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, In other words, he did exactly what he wasn't supposed to do. He took the Church's book and read it outside of the context of that Church. Kinda like taking fire out of the fireplace and playing around with it on the carpet, huh?

It's matter of logical priority. For Rome's defenders, the church precedes the Bible, therefore they typically begin with the church in their theology. Whereas for Calvin (and those in the Reformed tradition), the Scriptures precede the church. so Calvin exegetes Scriptures, and then plugs in church history. Simply skim through the Institutes and it becomes readily apparent that Calvin was fluent in the historical church sources he had available (see: Anthony N.S. Lane, John Calvin, Student of the Church Fathers (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1999).

guy fawkes said... Rome, a.k.a. the "The Church" doesn't have the ability to determine her own Traditions? Then who does?

By this question, I appreciate that we're in agreement that the defenders of Rome ultimately functions under the paradigm of sola ecclesia.

guy fawkes said... As for the canon, would you prefer the Christ rejecting Jews to determine what comprises the Canon? They didn't have a closed canon themselves until almost a century into the Church era.

And again, by this question, I appreciate that we're in agreement that the defenders of Rome ultimately functions under the paradigm of sola ecclesia.

guy fawkes said... So, since you believe you are authorized to determine what is scripture or Tradition, you must feel you are the ultimate authority, yes?

This is an inconsistent argument because it refutes your own position. By your choice to choose the Roman sect, you yourself function as the ultimate authority authorized to determine what is scripture or Tradition.

guy fawkes said... Thank you James. Your candor is refreshing and so rare among SS folks.

Likewise Guy. I rarely comes across a defender of Rome that willingly embraces the obvious sola ecclesia position they ultimately hold. And also, I like the fact you're a partim-partim person in regard to Tradition. That makes things much easier as well. In other words, you appear to me to be an old-school defender of Rome. To really be complete old-school you'd have to embrace the Reformation era beliefs that Protestants are heretics on their way to hell unless they return to Rome.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said... James, "In regard to Mary's role... (beyond her role of giving birth to the Messiah)...". Would you say Mary's role was that of surrogate? You know, like the women in India with wombs for rent. Maybe she was just an incubator? That is the impression I am getting from you.

You're quoting me out of context and apparently reading in polemical arguments you'd probably like to have. My sentence actually said, "In regard to Mary's role as mediatrix (beyond her role of giving birth to the Messiah)...". There has been no discussion from me in this blog post as to Mary's part (or role) in the Gospel story.

guy fawkes said... I bet you agree with Luther who said her role was no more than that of the wood of the cross.

In context, Luther is commenting on the humility of Mary who herself sang, "For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave." For Luther, it's about pointing to the grace of God- not the merit of human beings.

guy fawkes said... That would fit with his denial of freewill. He had a rather eccentric theory about human beings being beasts of burden ridden by either the Holy Spirit or the devil. He did have an interesting take on things, that's for sure.

Guy, it's refreshing to know that you're a modern-day Erasmus, holding that fallen man can have a free will apart from God's grace. Well done Guy!

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said... What a coincidence. I was just concurring with a blogger over on CCC about how rude Protestant blog owners and moderators are compared to the Catholic ones.

I raised a serious question to you, based on the standard you provided. You had stated: "Where in Protestantism do we see anyone giving up marriage and family for the sake of the Kingdom? Where do we see anyone following Jesus' admonition to the rich young man ( who had really kept the commandments as he said ) giving up all worldly goods in order "to be perfect"?" You appear to spend an extraordinary amount of time posting comments to blogs. I think in all my years of having this blog, no one has ever posted the amount of comments in the time frame you have. So again: Why aren't you doing what Jesus told the young ruler to do? Would Jesus condone your excessive amount of time spent on the Internet? would he ask you to give it up to prove your loyalty and love for him? Think about it.

guy fawkes said... This is about the 10th time you have let me know how unwelcome I am on your blog.
Again, why don't you change your format to make it like ( I think ) R. S. Clark's? People have to register to post on his blog.


Despite your lack of adhering to your own standard (Heb. 12:14), I've pretty much allowed you to say and post whatever you want, as often as you want. Based on the tenor of your posts and the places you've been booted off of, it appears to me you enjoy polemical discourse and will take the opportunity to go eye for an eye or tooth for a tooth with whoever challenges your faith in Rome.

guy fawkes said... I am sure you, Steve Hays, PBJ, JimBrooks, John Bugay and the others who openly resent a Catholic crashing a protestant party. Would you chaps prefer to make your comments and write your articles about us unhampered by any dissenting voice from us reprobates you look down upon?

Guy, that I've let you post here virtually unmoderated testifies to the fact that I'm not scared of your comments, nor is their any "party" going on. Someone earlier commented that you're posting comments in such a way to get yourself banned here. This would not surprise me.

guy fawkes said... James, why are you on the internet? You posted this article titled " Rome's Mary".
Then you act like I am listening in on a private conversation.


I keep this blog because it's a hobby. While I appreciate those who take the time to comment, comments are not necessary. If there were no comments, I'd still have this blog. Here's an analogy: I have a dear friend who has been a musical mentor to me for many years. He plays multiple instruments- just for the love of it. While he is capable musician, He doesn't care if anyone is listening to him. He enjoys playing, because he enjoys playing. I enjoy writing, because I enjoy writing and posting, not to change the mind of those like guy fawkes.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James, To answer your question about the Rich Young Ruler, may I ask if you are familiar with the fact that this passage is about the Evangelical Counsels?

Some years back I put together a blog post entitled, The Counsels for the Perfect. I am not in agreement with any such alleged "fact" that certain verses in the Bible about moral behavior only apply to certain people who are more serious about obtaining salvation. It isn't a "fact." I doubt the verses in question actually have had an infallible interpretation provided by Rome, so you don't even know it's a "fact" according to your own worldview.

In the context of this discussion, you offered the example of the rich young ruler to show the triumphs of Rome against the alleged weakness of Protestantism. For the sake of your argument, I'll grant your point is valid. Now, how many of those committed to Rome actually follow the counsels of the perfect in comparison to those who don't? I'd say for the overall number of those claiming to be Roman Catholic, it's a small percentage. Rome's commitment to the counsels for the perfect is a failure. The Roman Catholics I've known my whole life give lip service to Rome and live as if God doesn't matter.

Luther made a fitting critique of those monks allegedly following the counsels for the perfect: "They think they are abandoning all possessions and end up in the midst of possessions. For they have built large houses and had provisions of all things. They leave behind their crust of bread at home and get all things to the full in the monastery. (LW 68:34; cf. WA 47:338-339)

guy fawkes said...Luther changed the passage to mean just the opposite of what the young man said. He said he had kept the commandments. Jesus did not contradict him. Luther said the young man had not kept them despite the cleat words of the Bible.

I happen to have Luther's full exposition of Matthew 19 in front of me (LW 68), I doubt you, or any of Rome's defenders that visit this blog actually have LW 68 (I would be shocked if any of you did). Luther's explanation of the text points out that if this man really had kept the commandments, it would have been no problem for him to go forth and sell what he had to give to the poor. Luther: "To love your neighbor as yourself means to love in such a way that you set aside knowledge, property, and honor, and instead seek your neighbor's benefit and well-being and set it before your own benefit" (LW 68:44)."Do the possessions and wealth hurt him? No, what hurts him is that he does not love God and robs his brother instead of doing for him what he ought to do. Thus he keeps nothing of God's commandments" (ibid.).

This brings this right back to what I mentioned before to you Guy. In terms of Christ's perfection and the sinfulness of humanity, the whole lot of humanity- including you and I, are much closer to Hitler than to Christ. We give lip service to loving our neighbor as ourselves. The more you actually take a cold hard look at your own heart, the more you realize the perfection of Christ and the need for his righteousness to cover over sin.

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James,You have told me you want references.When are you going to give a reference on this piece?You called this "Proof for Rome's" Mary".It has been about two weeks and you still haven't posted the official Vatican statement on this tree.References James, references!

I've asked you for references in regard to some of the bogus Luther information you've mentioned. I don't recall you providing any. I do recall that a couple of times saying that if you mention something, it's up to us to Google search it for documentation.

Your worldview says Mary makes appearances. I provided a news item from a credible news agency that Mary has been cited. Add it to the list:
http://campus.udayton.edu/mary/resources/aprtable.html

James Swan said...

guy fawkes said...James,Ever try that fudge you see in the shops this time of year made by the Brigitine Monks of Oregon?Yup. I was there for a while. I worked in the shipping department.I made the offer to give up all. ( That's all you need to know ).
So, I guess you will take me seriously as you said, yes?We will see.


No, and no.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James - You made the comment that the Catholics that you have known pay lip service to Rome and they live as though God doesn't matter.

I have no idea where you live, or where you know Catholics from. But I have found Catholics that I know--and I know a lot of them as a Knight and as an extremely active member of our Parish and having good friends in other Parishes, to be much more knowledgable in church history, the Bible and Sacred Tradition and in love with our Lord.

If you compare Protestant radio (including the callers), with Catholic radio you will hear what I am taking about. If you go to a Catholic Church, you will see what I am talking about. Go to a Protestant men's conference and then to a Catholic men's conference with an open mind and see for yourself.

I spent 23 years as a Protestant, and have witnessed ignorance in abundance and plenty of Protestant's just punching a time clock and putting in their one hour a week for God. One council that I served on had a council member that had to leave an important congregational meeting in order to watch a Packers game.

James Swan said...

Cletus Van Damme said... Yes and RCism exegetes what the text of Scripture says in support of its doctrines. You disagree with that exegesis. If that entails RC doctrines are "nowhere found", then I fail to see how those who disagree with Calvinist exegesis does not entail Calvinist doctrine is "nowhere found".


In this discussion, guy fawkes championed the partim-partim view of scripture and tradition. I don't know which view you hold to, but adherents of the partim-partim view have no problem with particular Roman doctrines not found in the Bible. It's typically enough for them that a Bible passage may be some sort of allusion to the extra-biblical doctrine, or some sort of "seed form" of the doctrine. There's simply no other way to do it for these folks than to work backward from from the oak tree to the acorn.  On the other hand, I'll stick with John Calvin, since you mentioned Calvinism- there was no working backward. It was beginning with the text of Scripture, and allowing Scripture to interpret scripture. This doesn't mean I think Calvin was correct in all his interpretations- but fundamentally he began with the correct paradigm.

Did he appeal back to the scriptures to find verses that allude to sola scriptura and the identification of the canon? Did the apostles appeal back to the OT to find verses that allude to their teachings?

Calvin had two criteria for the canon: the Scriptures are divine (There is no authority above God that can give credibility to the word of God). Second, he held God's people have the testimony of his Holy Spirit confirming the authentication of the Scriptures ("My sheep hear my voice..."). For a quick overview of Calvin and the canon, see T.H.L. Parker, Calvin's New Testament Commentaries (Kentucky: John Know Press, 1993), chapter five.

As Dr. White has pointed out numerous times in debates with Rome's defenders, the canon is an artifact of revelation, not an object of revelation, As an artifact, the question we as investigators ask is "Where is the infallible voice of God, and what is the proof?" What is uncovered are the Sacred Scriptures. Rome's defenders claim the voice of God is also in Tradition, but never uncover the artifact to poke at. For more on this see, James White, Scripture Alone (Minnesota: Bethany House, 2004), chapter 5.

In regard to the Scripture alone as the sole infallible rule of faith, Calvin begins his major treatment in Book 1 of the Institutes chapter 6. Calvin's discussion first describes how God gave His word to his people, basically describing the process of inscripturation historically recorded in the Bible. You could look it up online and work through it yourself and see how Calvin does it: God has spoken and his words are found in the Bible. His proofs basically amount to the Scripture itself testifying that it is the word of God.

James Swan said...

Cletus Van Damme said...They reject the NT is the Word of God in the first place. Because they view the NT's teachings and apostolic interpretations as "nowhere found" in the OT. Just as you reject RC teaching and interpretations as "nowhere found" in the OT/NT.

I have to thank you for presenting a clever argument, It's one of the best arguments from one of Rome's defenders I've come across. Well done.I'm not familiar with Jewish exegetical issues, so some examples would probably help flesh out your argument.

I would say in response that Jesus held the Jews responsible for what the Old Testament scriptures said (Matthew 22:23-32), and he also chastised them for adding tradition to God's word (Mark 7). In other words, Jesus assumed the clarity of the Old Testament Scriptures as pointing to him, as did the apostles. The apostles were consistent that the Old Testament pointed to Jesus Christ and used the Old Testament in their preaching and apologetics. Whatever a Jewish exegete might say was being read into the Old Testament text by Jesus and the apostles- I would have to fundamentally side with the infallible interpreters of the Old Testament who assumed the Jews were responsible to know the Scriptures and interpret them correctly. Rome claims to now be the infallible interpreter. If she is, and infallibly interprets particular Bible passages to be about Mary's attributes, then I'm responsible to believe the infallible voice of God. The unfortunate position you're in is that Rome rarely if ever infallibly interprets a Bible passage. And of course, I deny that Rome is the infallible interpreter and voice of God.

Extra-biblical is precisely what's in question. During the centuries of development, Scriptural appeal is given (even if not necessarily "clear and unambiguous"). These doctrines don't just fall out of the sky, get defined, and then Rome scrambles to offer Scriptural support. Scripture is part of the rule of faith - it guides development and discussions of the doctrines as they mature, which is why appeals are made in the definitional statements themselves.


I'm not sure how familiar you are with Protestant theology, but the camp I belong to realizes that there is development of doctrine. Certainly when the church is faced with something, it forces her to more exact formulations of doctrine. Likewise, I believe that the Bible is crucial in the development of doctrine. Where I would disagree with you is that Scripture is not part of the rule of faith- it is the sole rule of faith, therefore it is the sole determiner of development of doctrine. Real development of doctrine is the continued learning and understanding of the Scriptures. As the scholar studies the Bible in its original languages, our universal understanding of God's word increases (like the Granville Sharp rule of Titus 2:13).

Because our rules of faith differ, your development will always be different than mine. Your "voice of God" is of a larger pool than mine. Because I as a Protestant deny that the voice of God is found in the magisterium and in Tradition, the Marian doctrines look suspiciously like popular belief that crept into Christian theology from the outside (Gnosticism, etc) and then was read back into the Scriptures.

James Swan said...

Cletus:

A problem as well for Roman Catholics is that their the church says that a doctrine can be defined, but the scriptural proofs used to support it utilized by the church's theologians might not actually support it. In other words, one can have certainty for a doctrine, but not have certainty in the scriptural proof texts for that doctrine. The infallibility is in the decree, not in the reasoning to that decree. The Catholic Encyclopedia states, ''the validity of the Divine guarantee is independent of the fallible arguments upon which a definitive decision may be based, and of the possibly unworthy human motives that in cases of strife may appear to have influenced the result. It is the definitive result itself, and it alone, that is guaranteed to be infallible, not the preliminary stages by which it is reached." Note the words of Roman Catholic theologian, Johann Mohler: "Catholic theologians teach with general concurrence, and quite in the spirit of the Church, that even a Scriptural proof in favour of a decree held to be infallible, is not itself infallible, but only the dogma as defined." [Source: Johann Adam Mohler, Symbolism: Exposition of the doctrinal Differences between Catholics and Protestants as evidenced by their Symbolic Writings, trans James Burton Robertson (New York: Crossroad Publishing, 1997), p.296].

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle:

This is off the subject- but i wanted Ito make you aware of something before it happens.

I will be posting excerpts from our Steadfast Lutherans interaction from 2013, unedited, as far as possible, with links back to the actual discussion on Steadfast Lutherans.

I'm doing this because as I've scrolled through my past interactions on other sites, and they tend to disappear. This is especially true of the CARM boards and Catholic Answers, so I've been saving things to this blog. Your presence here reminded me of this discussion (I had forgotten about you until you began commenting here), so I went back and snatched it before it vanished.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James -

I think you are talking about if I post here and your comments are the same as they were on Steadfast Lutherans you would cut and paste your comments as your answer as we previously discussed them on Steadfast Lutherans as pertaining to our conversations on this website. Is that correct?

I am not in favor of you at random taking our conversations on that website and making new articles on our previous conversations.

Because of serious time constraints, I would not be able to respond to most things. If I had that kind of time, I would start my own Blog post. I can post on a limited basis here, as I feel a need to respond to what I feel is serious bashing of the Catholic Church. But, I am finding that the more the Catholic Church gets misrepresented, the more serious students like myself will study and find the truth out for themselves.

Posting on these websites takes time away from families and time that could be better spent on learning and growing in Christ.

I prefer to do apologetics with folks that have real questions about the misrepresentations that they have heard about the Catholic Church, rather than the bashers that are close minded, refuse to learn or just plain bull headed (stubborn to a fault).

I thank the Lord every day for Catholic radio, which sets the record straight and is taking over the country.

Lloyd Cadle said...

My take on Calvin: I did not read about Calvin, I read and studied Calvin. I read every single word of his Institutes and marked every page with notes. I read some of his commentaries as well as other works. I taught Calvin's theology to Jr. High kids.

I wouldn't recommend him to anyone. Yes, he did start with Scripture, his own pet passages that he built his own new doctrines on. He stayed away from passages that went against his teachings.

His erroneous teachings on limited atonement and God predestining some to hell are in defiance of using the whole Bible as a hermanuetic and an example of creating a God in his own image. Even Luther opposed him on this.

His teachings on the Sacraments are new inventions, not taught by Christ, the ECF's or Scripture. Even fellow sola scripturian Luther didn't agree with him on Baptism and the Lord's Supper and Luther parted company with him over it.

He refused to submit to the Apostolic Authority that God had established some 1500 years earlier in favor of his own new teachings.

Calvin was a doctor of law, not theology.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle:

What I plan on doing is including the majority of comments in which we interacted, as an artifact, not an invitation to begin where we left off. In fact, since the interaction is over a year old, what I'll do is turn the comments off here so no one can comment on it. I will also not add anything to what I said a year ago.

James Swan said...

One of the reasons I enjoy reading Luther more than Calvin is that Luther is a more entertaining writer. Obviously, my theology lines more up with Calvin, but I much rather prefer reading Luther. I'm currently reading the latest volume of Luther's Works that was sent to me last week from Concordia.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Guy -

I am not in agreement with the theology of Steadfast Lutherans. They falsely accuse Catholics of trying earn heaven through good works.

Their leader (Luther), rather than submitting to Apostolic Authority (ordained by God), chose rebellion under his own authority, that has led others to do likewise--which has led to mass confusion and perhaps 40,000 ecclesial Christian communities, all under sola scriptura, which have variant teachings.

His teachings have antinomian tendencies and a very small emphasis on the key Gospel message which includes repentance, where repenting too much is a work.

Their leader (Luther), also sought to remove numerous books of the Bible to fit his new theology.

zipper778 said...

Lloyd said:

"which has led to mass confusion and perhaps 40,000 ecclesial Christian communities, all under sola scriptura, which have variant teachings."

This is what convinced you to go to Roman Catholicism? A false Roman Catholic argument that got a number from a book that defines the word denomination differently then most people do and then falsely stating that all of those denominations follow sola scriptura. Man, with that kind of misinformation, it's no wonder why I find Roman Catholicism repulsive. As long as an argument supports the Roman Catholic Church, just go ahead and use it; even if it's a false argument.

"Their leader (Luther), also sought to remove numerous books of the Bible to fit his new theology."

And yet he didn't remove any books from the Bible. Besides, this is another slanderous talking point that many Roman Catholics use that James has addressed a number of times on this blog.

Lloyd Cadle said...

Way, way back on April 16, 2001, Newsweek Magazine reported that there were 33,820 christian denominations. Their source was World Christian Encyclopedia, by David Barrett, page 10, volume 1.

In my neighborhood alone, they are popping up all over the place. Some, claiming that they are "led by the Spirit" become pastors by completing on-line courses. All are sola scriptura. Each is his own reformer. Each has a new leader. Each has a different understanding of what the Bible teaches.

Some have started their own ecclesial Christian communities after a disagreement with the elder or pastor of their old church. They all have equal authority, led by a man. It is not a reformation, but a fragmentation.

Do the math.

Arizona Samson said...

"Man, with that kind of misinformation, it's no wonder why I find Roman Catholicism repulsive. As long as an argument supports the Roman Catholic Church, just go ahead and use it; even if it's a false argument."

Pigs wallow, ducks quack, and unrepentant sinners sin impenitently. Since all do according to their nature why would we expect anything other than fallacious arguments from a false church?

zipper778 said...

Lloyd, I'd like to cover some things with you:

1) It's obvious that because you are talking to guy fawkes and myself now that you're over your non interaction with people who go by internet handles thing. Welcome back.

2) Lloyd, you said this:

"Way, way back on April 16, 2001, Newsweek Magazine reported that there were 33,820 christian denominations. Their source was World Christian Encyclopedia, by David Barrett, page 10, volume 1."

It's good to see that you are trying to look for the source of your denominations claim, so I'll give you that, but you need to look harder. My argument still stands because in that same book, Barrett claims that from the number of denominations claimed, over 200 denominations belong to Roman Catholicism. So obviously your claim of 40,000 denominations all adhering to sola scriptura is false and voids your argument.

3) Lloyd, you next state: "

In my neighborhood alone, they are popping up all over the place. Some, claiming that they are "led by the Spirit" become pastors by completing on-line courses. All are sola scriptura. Each is his own reformer. Each has a new leader. Each has a different understanding of what the Bible teaches."

Disagreements with church leaders are not always theological, there are a number of other reasons to start a new church, such as trying to spread the Gospel. Unless you can document that all of the new churches springing up in your area are due to doctrinal differences, then your argument is exagerated.

4) Lloyd finishes with:

"Do the math."

Like the over 200 Roman Catholic denominations included in your number that you carelessly included in your 40,000 number? Do you want me to break down your number more and show you in greater detail why your number is even more misleading?

Also, just because you see a number of churches rising in your area, doesn't mean that the total number of churches and/or denominations in the USA or the world are increasing as well. In general, religious attendence is on the decline, so for you to give a higher number then even Newsweek is giving you demonstrates how dishonest you are being.

Silly me though, I love math ;)

Lloyd Cadle said...

By the way,

During our RCIA classes, we occasionally have folks that are transferring in from what they perceive are Roman Catholic churches. They attempt to use documents from those churches. It turns out, like our Priest warned folks in his homily that these are not Roman Catholic Churches at all. They are not legitimate.

They claim to be Catholic, but they are not. They are not even listed as Catholic Churches in the listing of Catholic Churches in the Diocese of Phoenix.

They are fake Catholic Churches. Just because I put on a Yankee uniform doesn't make me a MLB player.

zipper778 said...

Is your point that Roman Catholics have to interpret which church is Roman Catholic and which is not?

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...His erroneous teachings on limited atonement and God predestining some to hell are in defiance of using the whole Bible as a hermanuetic and an example of creating a God in his own image. Even Luther opposed him on this.

Mr. Cadle, you keep pointing out how fluent you are in all these different theologies and theologians, but then you post stuff like this, and my typical first response while reading your words is, "huh?"

To my knowledge, I know of no writings that Luther ever wrote to or about Calvin.

Calvin's sparse comments on the extent of the atonement has lead a number of historical theologians to question whether or not Calvin actually held to limited atonement. Luther, likewise, doesn't have much to say on the extent of the atonement debate. He certainly never wrote about either Calvin or Geneva in opposition to limited atonement. If he did, show me where.

In regard to predestination, once again, Luther never wrote against the Reformed on this. There is certainly a different emphasis in the two writers, and Calvin wrote more on the topic. Luther's view was not to speculate on the hidden purposes of God in which the reprobate are predestined to be doomed.

If possible Lloyd, maybe you should pull out some of your old books and look over your notes before you make your comments here.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James -

Book of Concord, Formula, Epitome, Article XI: God's Eternal Foreknowledge and Election says this, "John Calvin and his followers had developed a teaching commonly known as "double predestination." This crass and horrible teaching states that God has foreordained and predestined some people to go to hell, no matter what, while others He has foreordained and predestined to go to heaven. Article XI clearly dismantles this dreadful and nonbiblical teaching and exposes it as a great error."

In the Book of Concord, Christian Visitation Articles; False and Erroneous Doctrine of the Calvinists, Concerning the Predestination and the Providence of God it says thus:

1. Christ died, not for all people, but only the elect. 2. God created most people for eternal condemnation and is unwilling that they be converted and saved. 3. The elect and regenerate cannot lose faith and the Holy Spirit and be condemned, even though they commit great sins and crimes of every kind. 4. Those who are not elect must be condemned, and cannot attain salvation, even though they are baptized a thousand times, daily go to the Lord's Supper, and also live as holy and blameless as possible.

The Book of Concord also just as strongly condemnes the errors of the Calvinists regarding the Holy Supper, Person of Christ (regarding their false views of Christ's human and divine nature), and concerning Baptism.

I have read, studied and marked every single page in the Book of Concord and taught it to Jr. High catechism students.

Would you believe that I have known folks that have been Lutherans for over 50 years that didn't even know that there was a Book of Concord? Talk about ignorance and punching a time clock to spend time with Jesus for one hour a week......They would rather watch Love Boat reruns on T.V. than take their faith seriously.

It should be noted that Lutheran pastors and theologians hold the Book of Concord as a higher standard of what Lutheran theology teaches than Luther himself.

Again, it takes time to study this stuff. There are no shortcuts.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James - I have moved on to my Catholic faith. I don't cut and paste. So, it takes time to pull out old books (I get migraine headaches from the dust), and type stuff out of books.

I can make quick comments, but to keep pulling out church father quotes, etc. and doing homework for folks, I just don't have the time. I certainly don't expect others to research information for me. I wouldn't trust it anyway, as I have to check it out for myself.

Most of the stuff folks post, I know if it is true or not because, for the most part, as a student, I took the time to study it.

James Swan said...

Mr. Cadle:

Did Luther write the sections of the Book of Concord that you cited?

Recall what you wrote:

Lloyd Cadle said...His erroneous teachings on limited atonement and God predestining some to hell are in defiance of using the whole Bible as a hermanuetic and an example of creating a God in his own image. Even Luther opposed him on this.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...Book of Concord, Formula, Epitome, Article XI: God's Eternal Foreknowledge and Election says this, "John Calvin and his followers had developed a teaching commonly known as "double predestination." This crass and horrible teaching states that God has foreordained and predestined some people to go to hell, no matter what, while others He has foreordained and predestined to go to heaven. Article XI clearly dismantles this dreadful and nonbiblical teaching and exposes it as a great error."

What's odd about this statement is that it's not in my copy of the Book of Concord. I did find it online in a word document entitled "ABC Adult Curriculum" from the St James Lutheran Church.

Which version of the Book of Concord are you using Lloyd? Why is this statement not my Tappert / Fortress Press edition (1959)?

Is the statement later commentary added in, or is it actually part of the Epitome, Article XI? I have this section open now, and it doesn't have this statement you cite.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said... Most of the stuff folks post, I know if it is true or not because, for the most part, as a student, I took the time to study it.

Well, if you ever come across where Luther actually wrote specifically against John Calvin on the atonement and predestination, I would be interested in those references.

Here's a tip, take it or leave it. I try to verify what I post because sometimes my memory isn't always accurate. Recently, I searched for a half hour for something I thought I remembered, only to realize that I didn't remember it quite correctly.

I think your memory got the best of you on this one. You probably remembered that the Lutheran Confessions had areas against Calvinism, and you turned that into Luther writing against John Calvin.

Also, you seem to not have any knowledge of the controversy on Calvin's view of the atonement.

If you post tidbits on the Reformers on my blog, it would be best to check your facts first to avoid situations like this. I may not be fluent in church history, but I know the Reformation era better than most.

James Swan said...

the most offensive slap of all, that we practice "MARYOLOTRY".

That's "Mariolatry" (merēˈälətrē), not Maryolotry.

JimBrooks1776 said...

Well stop bowing down to statues of Mary then.

JimBrooks1776 said...

Gars Falks, so you think that because James Swan asks a particular person to be a little more careful before incorrectly assigning authorship of something to Martin Luther, James should then stop an undefined group of people from saying incorrect things about what Catholics believe? How does that equate? To your first "point", I'm pretty sure nobody here said that you or Catholics have a messed up view of sex because of your view of Mary's perpetual virginity, rather that some of the ECF's had messed up views of sex that made them more likely to posit Mary's perpetual virginity. To your second point, is that something you've noticed is said by all Protestants or is it primarily Calvinists? To your third point, I understand that you say you're not committing Mariolatry, but your hyperdulia has so many outward indicators in common with idolatry, you should be able to understand how others might misinterpret it.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James - CONCORDIA The Lutheran Confessions; A Reader's Edition of the Book of Concord. They note in the preface; "With fervent prayer we offer this edition of The Lutheran Confessions, as contained in the Book of Concord of 1580." Concordia Publishing House.

If you want, I can mail it to you with my notes, if you promise to mail it back to me. I used this edition for the purpose of teaching catechism students in the WELS and LCMS.

Confessional Lutherans are bound by the Book of Concord, not the teachings of Luther. Even Dr. Rod Rosenbladt of the White Horse Inn will tell you that. Lutheran theologians like Martin Chemnitz and Philip Melanchthon contributed to the BOC.

Confessional eccelisial Christian communities like the LCMS and the WELS and ELS will tell you that not everything Luther taught was correct Lutheran doctrine, hence their need for the BOC.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James -

I tell folks all of the time that if you want to know what the Reformed, Lutherans and Catholics, etc. teach, you have to take the time to read and study their confessions and catechism's.

You can supplement your reading with Luther, Calvin etc., but to really accurately define their teachings, a person has to study all of their confessions. As an example, any Lutheran theologian will tell you that Luther tended to be a bad example in some of his statements on doctrine and racism.

By the way, I have given away so many books, I do work off memory much of the time. I am buying a bunch of new books and have to make room for them.

When I talk about Lutherans, the Reformed and Baptists etc. I would assume that folks in those camps know what I am talking about. They should have those sources on hand. I should not have to do homework for lazy folks.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...
James - CONCORDIA The Lutheran Confessions; A Reader's Edition of the Book of Concord. They note in the preface; "With fervent prayer we offer this edition of The Lutheran Confessions, as contained in the Book of Concord of 1580." Concordia Publishing House.


Mr. Cadle, one thing I've noticed about your methods and interactions is your choice to not respond directly to anything that hits you directly. You simply ignored the fact that Luther never wrote about Calvin on either the atonement or predestination, and you ignore the fact that I pointed out you didn't actually cite a confessional statement to me but rather an editor's comment. These were your facts. I challenged them, and you simply ignore them. Recall earlier how you stated the Protoevangelium of James was the writing of an Early Church Father.

I understand that you have pride in your previous denominational affiliations and consider yourself qualified to make statements of authority on such matters. However, you've repeatedly demonstrated that you won't even admit simple errors- perhaps just simple errors of memory. Why? You're credibility in regard to having useful knowledge of your past denominational affiliations actually suffers when you don't have direct and honest interactions on the facts you bring to the table when you're challenged.

This doesn't mean I don't think you're a nice guy. In fact, I think I watched an old news video of you this morning on adoption.

I make mistakes, everyone does. Why not end this year with saying you might not remember all your facts correctly about Luther, Calvin, Lutheranism and Calvinism? Why not simply stop saying how well-versed you are in these things until you actually are able to prove it? If you really know you're stuff, you won't need to tell anybody. We'll know by what you post.

zipper778 said...

Guy said:

"Slanderous misinformation? Hardly. Until the end of his days, he held that James did not deserve the status of the other books of the Bible. Somewhere on this blog is my post from weeks ago stating the fact."

It is indeed misinformation, and it is also slanderous. It's misinformation because Luther translated the Bible and he kept the books in question. It's true that he had his doubts, but that leads to why you and Lloyd have made this slanderous claim.

It's a slanderous claim because you two are implying that it was only Luther who was acting like a mad man and carelessly questioned books in the Bible. However, do you explain how his points of view were similar to other theologians of his time? Why don't you explain why there were high ranking Roman Catholics who had similar points of view as Luther did in regards to questioning some books in the Bible?

"Whitewashing is just as dishonest as spreading lies. Whether he got his way or not is not the point and you know it."

The only whitewashing going on here is by guy and Lloyd who make it seem like Luther was the only one who questioned what books belonged in the Bible.

And yes, I do find Roman Catholicism repulsive (to repel or not attract). That is not a personal attack. It is only a way for me to illustrate Rome's method of declaring dogmas/doctrines evenif the evidence used is fraudulent. This is why I'm attracted to Jesus only. He is the pure one.

James,

Your observations on Lloyd are true. As soon as the heat turns up on him, he ignores you or says he won't respond because you aren't using your real name. He's not convincing by doing that.

Lloyd Cadle said...

James - I, as mentioned on an earlier post, put the PROTOEVANGELIUM of James in as an early document on the subject of Mary. Of Course it is not an ECF, it is a historical document, as I mentioned previously.

Moving on, in the Book of Concord, Formula Epitome, XI. God's Eternal Foreknowledge, under Antitheses or Negative Statements, False Teachings about this Article, numbers 17, 18, 19, 20 and 21. Please read this, as it addresses the heretical doctrine of double predestination. It is right out of the Lutheran Confessions, Book of Concord.

Please refer to my above quotations on the Christian Visitation Articles 1592, on the Lutheran understanding of the false teachings of the Calvinists. Go to the website Bookofconcord.org and see why the Christian Visitation Articles 1592 are part of the Confessions for all Lutherans. It is all in there.

When I stated that Luther parted with Calvin on limited atonement and the Sacraments, I should have stated that Lutherans and the Reformed strongly disagree on those points. Lutherans teach that God elected some to salvation but that the atonement is for all. They let the tension stand on its own without trying to explain it.

I also read a number of Luther's commentaries, and one of them was Luther's Lectures on Genesis, in L.W. 5:43-50, you will read a strong stance against double predestination by Luther. An no, he didn't mention Calvin by name.

This should answer your questions. You mentioned the video on adoption. Grace just turned 5. She is still on a feeding tube but she eats a small amount of food. We take her to all of the best restaurants in Phoenix. She is doing great in pre-school. I love her more than anything in the world. She wants to be a nurse Nun. She says that Mary is her mother. She likes to wear her hair like Mary! Better to have Mary as a role model than a Lady GaGa. Grace just went to her first Confession. She is such a good girl. She told Jesus that she was sorry that she did not shut off her Nabe Jr. right when my wife asked her to. Grace was born one pound and three ounces. There has never been a girl like my sweet baby Grace!






JimBrooks1776 said...

Fawksie, did you honestly read what I wrote and think I was asking for an explanation for your hyperdulia? Answering unasked questions and ignoring asked questions are the reasons some people might think you're trolling.
Anyway, I for one am not accusing you, or any catholic of being a pagan. In regards to your analogy, AFAIK priestly raiments, incense, and chanting are not ever spoken of in the Bible the way statues, idols, and graven images are. To rephrase, I'm not saying you are "worshipping" such things, that's between you and God, but you should be able to understand how it looks to others.

James Swan said...

Lloyd Cadle said...When I stated that Luther parted with Calvin on limited atonement and the Sacraments, I should have stated that Lutherans and the Reformed strongly disagree on those points. Lutherans teach that God elected some to salvation but that the atonement is for all. They let the tension stand on its own without trying to explain it.

OK, good. That's all you needed to say.

Lloyd Cadle said... I also read a number of Luther's commentaries, and one of them was Luther's Lectures on Genesis, in L.W. 5:43-50, you will read a strong stance against double predestination by Luther. An no, he didn't mention Calvin by name.

I'm familiar with what you're referring to (LW 5). My major investigation of Luther's view as compared to Calvinism can be found here:
Is Luther's doctrine of Predestination Reformed?

You'll notice that I do take the comments from LW 5 into consideration. See my discussion in this link under:

VI. Avoiding Speculation on Predestination


JimBrooks1776 said...

Well Fawker, the only question I asked was if it was only Calvinists who'd accused you (Catholics) of believing in works based salvation.

JimBrooks1776 said...

And this 'Guy' wonders why nobody thinks he's arguing in good faith.
It's like trying to make nice with a Social Justice Warrior, offer an olive branch and they jamb it in your eye.
Maybe he's just ESL and has a difficult time interpreting English or understanding how grating his style of writing is.
No, no, I shouldn't be like that, it is after all my own fault for feeding the troll(s).