Skip to comments.In Christ Alone (Happy reformation day)
Posted on 10/31/2010 11:59:22 AM PDT by RnMomof7
In Christ Alone lyrics
Songwriters: Getty, Julian Keith; Townend, Stuart Richard;
In Christ alone my hope is found He is my light, my strength, my song This Cornerstone, this solid ground Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace When fears are stilled, when strivings cease My Comforter, my All in All Here in the love of Christ I stand
In Christ alone, who took on flesh Fullness of God in helpless Babe This gift of love and righteousness Scorned by the ones He came to save
?Til on that cross as Jesus died The wrath of God was satisfied For every sin on Him was laid Here in the death of Christ I live, I live
There in the ground His body lay Light of the world by darkness slain Then bursting forth in glorious Day Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory Sin?s curse has lost its grip on me For I am His and He is mine Bought with the precious blood of Christ
Hi. My words were not meant to suggest that Biblical repentance was "purely an intellectual exercise," (as i have made clear in response to the repeated false assertion that sola fide historically meant a faith that was alone), but was in reaction to any idea that the 3,000 Jews were to first go do works of self affliction before they could be baptized and receive the Holy Spirit.
I stated that
"the official Roman Catholic Bible [of the U.S. Conference of Bishops], rightly states repent, and the word occurs 34* times, and essentially means a change of mind. While this results in a change of life, it is used in distinction from the actual works, as in Acts 26:20, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet [corresponding to] for repentance.'
As for the Vulgate, see note 2 on page 16 here. http://www.churchlatin.com/library/books/samplepages/RBS02.pdf
There is no contention on my part that this interior change results in outward results, and a type faith that does not produce works corresponding to faith in the Lord Jesus is not one that is salvific, and i have said more than once that it is faith out of a contrite heart that appropriates justification, listing the penitent publican as one example. The labor of an evangelist is to bring souls to that point, in the light of the holiness and justice of God, and Peter did so in convicting them by God that they were culpable in the death the One whom God had exalted as Lord, and who would make them His footstool. Not a good place to be.
I also stated that God may convict a soul to take some steps toward reform his life before conversion, and in fact, one must obey light that he has if he will move towards the Light. But some can make reforms others cannot before conversion, and my key contention is that requiring that conversion must include first manifesting prescribed or formal public physical manifestations of repentance (such as in first making restitution, or fasting or other like acts) would be adding to what is revealed, while precluding that such may be required before conversion would be subtracting from it. Immediate forgiveness of a brother is indicated in Lk. 17:3,4 upon repentance, while an expression of repentant contrition which signified future changes is seen in Mt. 11:21 as well as Lk. 18:13,14.
Repentance and belief are inseparable, and often (as in John) only belief is used, as what you really believe is manifest in your actions, (assuming one can choose), and what a person overall lives out is what their religion really is, regardless of what they profess. Idolatry is the chief sin, with its false finite objects of supreme affection, allegiance, or security, and the command to love God is the primary one, and what conversion most basically consists of is a change of god(s) toward the true and living God, including turning from a false notion of Him, and thus in faith to truly confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus (Rm. 10:9) which in those days typically meant a radical reduction in physical life expectancy by the Holy Spirit (cf. 1Cor. 12:3), signified a change in heart allegiance, etc., and required a faith that by nature would result in a changed life reflecting this changed heart.
The cross is indeed contrary to the idea that man can earn eternal life by the merit of His works, avoiding the abasement before God as sinners in need of salvation on Christ's expense and righteousness, yet God-given justifying faith is one that has works. However even then if the emphasis in living this out is primarily placed upon works or conformity to structure, etc., versus real heart faith in the God of the Bible, then it will produce mere religion, while New Testament writings reveal that believer were driven by a relationship centered life, "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. " (Hebrews 12:2) Out of which all flows. May i make my eye more single. (Mt. 6:22) To God be their glory.
The NAB is the official Bible of the U.S. Conference of Bishops. EWTN site says, There is only one English text currently approved by the Church for use in the United States. This text is the one contained in the Lectionaries approved for Sundays & Feasts and for Weekdays by the USCCB and recognized by the Holy See. These Lectionaries have their American and Roman approval documents in the front. The text is that of the New American Bible with revised Psalms and New Testament (1988, 1991), with some changes mandated by the Holy See where the NAB text used so-called vertical inclusive language (e.g. avoiding male pronouns for God). Since these Lectionaries have been fully promulgated, the permission to use the Jerusalem Bible and the RSV-Catholic at Mass has been withdrawn.
To suggest that the "changing of the mind" was purely an intellectual exercise is not biblical.
Indeed it is not, and I think you should have know i was not suggesting such, but a change of heart which resulted in a change of life.
In Acts 26:20, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet [corresponding to] for repentance. -- corroborates the fact that the Bible teaches "metanoia" as something people DO rather than think or feel. "Do penance" is the proper translation, it reflects the active nature of true penance.
See http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2618333/posts?page=6922#6922 Again, not as if they were to put off being baptized until such the repaid debts, etc. Rather, the change in heart, from unbelief to being baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus whose Lord ship Peter has just emphasized was as significant as the a wedding vows. And thus they did repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance. What is was not was Long before the Reformation the schoolmen debated the question whether complete "contrition" was or was not in itself sufficient to obtain the Divine pardon, versus formal acts of contrition, but there can be no end of things a soul sneed s to make right, and some have not the character to do them.,While God can convict souls to do certain things in preparation for conversion, (Acts 24:25) others have made some right choices and are saved in one day, as the 3k souls at Pentecost.
You are reading a description of rewards being given for works, in which faith is not even being mentioned, so it is not dealing with the theological issue of faith or works, or the type of works or faith, both of which the epistles do, and could easily be used to justify salvation on the basis of works of mercy. Rm. 2:6-10 describes the character of true faith For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. (Rm. 1:13; cf. 8:4) and not works gaining justification, the type of faith being one that obeys the law:
Hermeneutically, texts which seem to affirm merit being the basis for justification are to be interpreted in the light of the Paul's express soteriology as to what the basis for justification and its appropriative means is.* In which it is either a system of justification by the merit of works, which, if possible, would be under the law, or Christ and His blood, and which is appropriated by a faith by resting on Christ, but which faith is of a nature results in works.
The latter two indeed are inseparable as to the expressive nature of saving faith, so as to sometimes allow one to refer to the other, but as regards merit, like as election is strictly not according our works (2Tim. 1:9) not of him that willeth, (Rm. 9:16) otherwise grace is no more grace, (Rm. 11:6) so texts such as not of works (Eph. 2:19) not by works of righteousness, (Titus 3:5) to him that worketh not, (Rm. 4:5) go beyond merely works of the law but logically excludes any system in which works are the basis for justification.
Paul is not disallowing one system of justification by the merit of works so as to begin another, but is establishing that justification is a appropriated by those who have no means of justification, no merit of works, but who, like as with physically impotent Abraham, realize this but place potent faith in the living God, in this case in His mercy in Christ Jesus, and whose faith is counted for righteousness.
Now it might be argued that this only takes place when faith is confessed, but which eliminates baptism by desire. Also, if we reason that souls merit eternal life in the sense of a recompense given them for their works, which God does for works in general, then i see no difference between this and the Judaizers, whose Christology did not seem to be an issue but who added obedience to the law as a prerequisite for salvation. While they included the ceremonial law and we recognize faith obeys the moral law in its full intent, Paul was not simply excluding certain works of the law in Rm. 4, and in Acts 15, while basic obedience was requires of Gentile converts, with growth in sanctification expected, it was recognized that the Gentiles did not receive the Holy Spirit by works, but their heart was purified by faith. (Acts 15:8,9)
Calvinists, in seeking to make justification purely a work of grace as in election (not of him that willeth), hold that man is first regenerated and so believes and is justified, while i see salvific grace granting repentance (Acts 11:18) and giving faith to believe the word preached, with this being the moment of forgiveness, sanctification by the Spirit and justification. (Acts 10:43ff; 2Cor. 6:11) And which may take place within an action, as well as precede it, but not meriting it.
*(Likewise, there are texts which focus on the humanity of Christ, and in which He expressed His Divinity, but which modern-day Arians invoke, as on face value such can seem to support Him being only a created being. But they must be examined in the light of texts which deal more with His nature, showing that He is both fully God and man, as in the hypostatic union, being from eternity His nature is most essentially Divine as the eternal Son of God.
We are not fine with faith alone in such way "that by faith alone the impious is justified; in such wise as to mean, that nothing else is required to co-operate in order to the obtaining the grace of Justification, and that it is not in any way necessary, that he be prepared and disposed by the movement of his own will" (DECREE ON JUSTIFICATION , CANON IX).
Well, they actually are fine with it as in baptism of desire, in which people die without even baptism but a pregnant faith is counted as salvific, and rightly so. However, What nothing else leads to is another issue. Arminian Protestantism (which maybe the majority) holds that God's grace man are drawn toward Christ, granted repentance, and i would say persuaded to do something they would not otherwise have done, and many see man as being given a choice to keep that faith, resting on the Lord Jesus for salvation with thus responding to Him in obedience. But despite similarities with Roman Catholicism, with the latter you have proxy faith (the palsied man's infirmity was physical, not cognitive) and man meriting salvation by works he chose to do, and within a system that treats souls as Christians from essentially birth and effectually fosters confidence in one's works and the church for eventually attaining eternal life by them.
it is Rome who engages in the most artistry in having believers merit the gift of eternal life via her sacramental system
But that, too, is plain scripture. The Church was told to baptize and celebrate the Eucharist (Matthew 28:19, Luke 22:19). She was told that the Baptism and the Eucharist are fonts of eternal life (Mark 16:16, John 6:55 or next to it). Where is the "artistry"?
You know that the issue is not with what is commanded believers, but what makes them Christians in the first place. And as i have responded before, the New Testament does not make the Lord's supper the means of regeneration, of having life in you, (Jn. 6:53) which believing the word does, (Jn. 3:36) and Jesus lived by the word of God, (Mt. 4:4) and doing His will was His meat. (Jn. 4:34) And Jeremiah said Thy words were found, and I did eat them. (Jer. 15:16) That is plain Scripture, while contriving John (of all writers) into making Jesus body physical food to be eaten is "artistry." One may just as well suppose David believed in transubstantiation as he referred to the water gotten at the peril of his men's lives as that of their blood. (2Sam. 23:15-17) But that's another thread.
One should indeed do as the Bereans and "daily search the scriptures".
No, they should not if Rome has spoken, as then they need not, and to do so is contrary to what Rome has spoken.
This advice does not negate advice to seek understanding from an apostolic source (Acts 8:27-31). It is my constant theme that the Protestants at best -- at the historical, now virtually extinct best -- do not have doctrines that can self-evidently be reconciled with the scripture. I see plenty of sophistry that ostensibly reconciles it, but I do not see that simple, boot-in-the-bouilion simplicity of "my flesh is food indeed" or "by works man is justified and not by faith only".
SS affirms the teaching office of the church, so there is no conflict there, and has produced voluminous and popular commentaries. Read some of Matthew Henry. Rome has not the like. And in the light of the immediate and larger context of the Bible if you really think that Jn. 6:63 is speaking about physically consuming Jesus then it is honestly a negative commentary on Roman Catholic exegesis.
those in Rome do not even know the infallible status of multitudes of pronouncements
No, we don't. That might be a blemish of a kind. Certainly a Catholic should do a better job figuring out his own faith, --
The problem is not the avg. Catholic, but with the assuredly infallible magisterium as it must be the one to define which of the hundreds or more of potentially infallible of pronouncements are infallible.
just look at all these Catholics going Pentacostal or something out of pure ignorance of their own Pentacostal birthright.
That is as right and relevant as Judiasm complaining about Jews becoming Christians. If Rome actually manifested that it was the same church as the 1st century most would not be leaving a dead institutional looking for life. And overall find it. And many were Roman Catholic charismatics (over 50% of Latin RC's are).
But tat the same time, this is a legalistic argument. Would you as easily convict an American citizen for not knowing the Uniform Commerce Code, his state's Criminal code and the taxation laws?
The issue was the claims made for Rome's AIM (as part of an autocratic government) which is trumpeted as providing infallible doctrine, versus having so many things they may disagree on as Protestants, while in reality Catholics can and do disagree substantially. The main difference is that they do not leave their church, as their identity is more church-centered, while evangelicals, which overall also hold to common core essentials, find transdenominational fellowship based upon their common conversion and basic relationship-centered faith behind it. And whose degree of unity of the Spirit is harder than that of implicit trust in men, as it requires heart surrender to Christ and His Word.
The American citizen has someone to ask and he has a general intuition of these things...
But not an assuredly infallible one, nor did the Jews.
When in doubt ask the Church.
There is plenty Catholics could ask and still have doubts as what it the truth on an issue.
Biblically speaking, by the way: Mt 18:18ff.
We have been here. Again, this presumes the church referred to there is what Rome is now, and that authenticity is based upon her problematic formal decent mentioned before, and her a magisterium that is infallible whenever she speaks in accordance with her infallible declared formula, which makes her declaration that she is the OTC to be infallible.
very little of the Bible has been defined
Good point. I heard it, and don't know the reference, but the Church actually fixed the interpretation of less than a dozen biblical verses. We have doctrines, -- we don't have quotebooks.
Unlike the New Testament. But her fallible apologists do, if not being uniform themselves. And if PI is denigrated then it presumes infallible interpretations of Scripture would be the norm.
her teaching itself requires some interpretation, both of which engage private interpretation (PI), and her members evidence less unity in core truths and moral values than those within evangelicalism.
That is true too, and again speaks to the non-legalistic method employed by the Church, in the spirit of Matthew 5, "But I say to you".
No, Jesus words were legally authoritative. (Jn. 12:48)
Again, the avenue of spiritual growth given a Catholic is primarily his priest, who is someone he can ask. That is not infallible, but the model works also to the larger community, till the questioner either finds an assent of faith ot leaves the Church.
Likewise in evangelicalism, but while the Catholics cannot look to Scripture as the supreme authority, the evangelical must.
Whether Evangelicanism possesses a similar or superior degree of unity is not the proper question. The proper question is whether Evangelicanism accords with the Scripture. If it does, surely the Holy Spirit wil provide true unity.
True, and thus the issue become on what basis is truth established. And to reiterate what has been said, the short version is that in the Bible God supernaturally confirmed His reality to men, and likewise He confirmed the faith and morality of those who believed Him, and the testimony and writings of such progressively became the authority by which later persons and further claims would be examined by and established, as a continuing principle. (Is. 8:20; Mt. 22:29-45; Lk. 24:27,44; Jn. 5:39,42; Acts 17:2,11; 18:28; 28:23; Heb. 1, etc.) with God giving attestation to them, directly or indirectly, including by believers realizing things which corresponded to the claims of Scripture, which in turn confirmed the Divine authority of the Scriptures.
Thus when Jesus authority was challenged, or in establishing it and His teaching, He invoked the work of non-ordained (by men) John the Baptist, (Mk. 11:28-30) and the Scriptures and His own works. (Mt. 22:42-45; Jn. 5:33-36,39; Lk. 24:27,44) In like manner the apostles for their authority and preaching . (Acts 10:37-43; 17:2; 28:23; Rm. 1:2; 15:19; 2Cor. 6:1-10; 12:12) And upon this basis is all authority manifest, in proportion to its claims, not pedigree or high sounding claims. (cf. 1Cor. 4:18-21) Rome fails in this,
If it doesn't, and it doesn't, then the unity of Evangelicanism is simply the unity of any other group of people sharing a subculture: it does not unite in essence. There are many bikers, they all look alike in their leather, and they all fight bacause they're bikers.
If you require anything near complete doctrinal unity either officially or effectually you indict Rome, while any substance to its claim to doctrinal unity is based upon implicit trust in a supreme ecclesiastical office, which is no greater than than that of cults. But contrary to your claim as per your biker analogy, it is Roman Catholicism which most resembles a club unity, as despite widely disagreeing they still drink at the same bar they all identify with, while evangelicals are at least as unified in core truths on the popular level, and its unity that of one of Spirit, based upon effectual faith in common transforming truths.
along with Divine attestation of the faith, including the transformative effects of believing the preaching of what you seem to malign as the misanthropic self-effacing me, filthy rags gospel of grace, by which those who thus humble themselves are exalted. (Lk. 18:14)
The gospel of grace is the Catholic teaching. So is transformational rather than forensic justification by grace. However, penance is not a one-time public act.
I know what transformational typically consists of in Roman Catholicism. Nor is repentance a one time occurrence in historic evangelical faith. While the altar call can become a form, it was historically a call to repentance after a message on consecration and holiness,self-denial and crucifying the flesh being part of that. A while ago i was reading about how the American Bible society (then) labored to get Bibles out to immigrants at Ellis Island (with Gov. sanction no ACLU) and across the country, and their labors and faith amid hardships, and much more could be said, and has been said about its high degree of commitment to Christ, not a denomination.
It is rather an recurring act of faith that involves telling of one's sins, sacramental absolution, and taking up the work where it has been left off due to sin "In stripes, in prisons, in seditions, in labours, in watchings, in fastings, In chastity, in knowledge, in longsuferring, in sweetness, in the Holy Ghost, in charity unfeigned, In the word of truth, in the power of God; by the armour of justice on the right hand and on the left; By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report ... be you also enlarged", (2 Cor. 6:5ff).
And this more characterizes Roman Catholicism? We must have missed it. Certainly it has and has had its share of pious souls, but you both characterize Protestantism as having promoted easy believism while inferring that Roman Catholicism holds to a much higher standard, but it has not overall been the case, while today both see decline.
When penance is reduced to a single time getting-saved event, one can surely say thet the spirit of penance has been replaced with a spirit of social recognition of the penitent. That is what I was directing my sarcasm at.
Apart from the idea that actual works of repentance must predicate forgiveness, and teaching which work against true conversion, i agree, and that happens in both, and there are also many RC's who are proud of their piety. And I also reprove the Benny Hinn type gospel.. Yet the historic evangelical gospel is one that doctrinally requires the manner of abasement of men as sinners before an infinitely holy and perfectly just almighty God, and trusting in the mercy of God in Christ for salvation. This is contrary to teaching souls that they are Christians by birth or upbringing, and Sinners in the hands of an angry God was directed at such institutionalized Christians, with manifest results. (I he fasted for 3 days before delivering it).
“Yet in the ecumenical movement “In the contradiction of the Fathers and the Councils, expressions are sought, not most clearly fencing off the truth, but rather the fuzziest, the most acceptable”’
Describes the JDOTDJ fairly well,m but typically not FR. But how many years did they work on it?
And no, i do not speak Russian (maybe something like “spazeba?), But breaks are something we both used.
My objection is to the to "onlys". Indeed the Scripture is inerrant as written by its human authors. But from nowhere does it follow that it is the only inerrant thing in matters of faith and morals. It is also true that the Magisterium of the Church is "subject" to the scripture in the sense that it may not teach contrary to it. However, the scripture itself poses no objection to the authority of the Church, -- in fact it asserts it; the common sense tells us that Sola Scriptura could not have been the rule of faith at least in the Early Church where the relevant to the Christian scripture was simply not written nor that that was in due course written, canonized. The truth is that the Hoyl Scripture itself is a product (in varying senses ranging from authorship to canonization and proper exegesis) of the Living Magisterium at the time. The objections that the Magisterium being an activity of fallible men may, in principle, one day go into apostasy are of the same category as other speculations against faith: that remains of Jesus might be found one day; that natural explanation of the virgin birth and resurrection might be found; that evidence of the scripture being a fictional work of art be discovered, or generally some historical finding might render Christianity a myth.
The salient facts are that the scripture does not contain a proper definition of Sola Scriptura yet if Sola Scriptura were the true rule of faith, it itself would logically have to be in the scripture. The salient fact is that Jesus surely did establish the Church (leaving aside for a moment arguing whether the Church He founded was Catholic in the narrow or some broader sense), -- but He never instructed anyone to write down anything. Christ intended the Church to be the rule of faith, and the Church produced the Christian scripture as part of her mission.
and the majority [of the liberal Catholics are] in the West
Very true. Another reference to Kuraev's book. He says that while in the West the ecumenically-minded Roman Catholics are theological conservatives who long for an injection of Orthodox fundamentalism, in Russia the voices clamoring for speedy reunion with the Western Church are the liberals whose hope is to water down that very fundamentalism. I think he is correct on that.
Or did you mean political liberalism and political conservatism? That, I think is due to the poorly defined political terms in the US. Catholicism is by definition conservative in the sense that it is oriented to the past event of the Incarnation and the Resurrection. We view the intervening time as something that is an obstacle to salvation of the souls, rather than any kind of "progress". But naturally, Catholics are more receptive to the forms of primitive socialism of the Early Church, condmenation of greed as a motivating factor, charity to especially the poor, -- the kind of things that the American Left pretends to have an interest in as well. On the other hand, the cultural liberalism of today: the indifferentism toward sexual norm, moral and philosophical relativism, the notion that a law is valid as soon as it is democratically enacted -- Catholicism would fight to the death, whereas there is no shortage of Protestant denominations falling over to the dark side on that.
Roman Catholics show more concern over a liberal Catholic who becomes a conservative born again evangelical than when he was a nominal Catholic
Of course. The falling off the Mother Church is a consciously taken step toward death. One can sympathize with one who struggles with Catholicism from the outside and fails to find it. Falling off the embrace of the Church once experienced is simply a horrific act of deliberate destruction. The grief is the same grief as over the fall of Adam. Of course, the responsibility for the Reformation and its evil fruit is entirely with the Church, and that adds to the pain.
On the other hand, a shift in political affiliation is not really a big deal, so long as it is not in itself defying the Church. To put it in a few words, it bothers us when one joins the liberal reservation on the Catholic non-negotiables, - abortion, human cloning, gay "marriage", euthanasia and artificial insemination of humans. If one joins the liberals for some other reason, it is his choice.
the overall historic evangelical Protestant position has been that faith and works are separate as far as to what actually procures justification
No. Not separate. Grace and works are separate altogether. Faith and works are either separate or one and the same, depending on the nature of the works. Works done out of love of God and the neighbor (Mattthew 5-7) are works of self-denial and therefore works of faith in Jesus Who did the same works. Those are a direct reason of the individual's salvation (Matthew 25:31-46). Works of the law -- in fact any works done for some purpose rewarded in the temporal life --- are naturally not bearing an eternal rewatd of salvation. If there is anything in the prooftexts that you offer (Rm. 4: 5,6; 9:11; Gal. 2:16; Titus 3:5; 2Tim. 1:9 or any other) that contradicts what I just said, please, devote a post to just that and explain textually why. Do not forget to examine the immediate context: for example, Tutus 3:5 is incomplete unless the entire passage is apprehended. The salient points I need addressed:
1. "Works" in general are a badly defined term. Most anything we do other than cogitate are works. It is not enough to see the word "works" somewhere in the Bible and jump to conclusions. One has to determine the context in which that particular type of activity is pronounced upon, and the kind of activity being spoken about.
2. Liturgical "works" are works that God works. Man is merely asking His presence and His will. You did not mention that specifically, but I would like to know if the Eucharist, for example, is something you consider non-salvific works.
3. Certain works, under the general category of works of love (or of charity, or of faith) are singled out in the Gospel as at least conducive or perhaps concurrent to our salvation. So I need a comment specially on Matthew 25:31-46 (it is not the only place where such are commented upon, but that is the clearest, spoken by Christ Himself, and with direct consequence of eternal life in Christ or eternal life of damnation, -- i.e. salvation).
4. James 2 spends several paragraphs to debunking Faith Alone. It places the need for works to cooperate with faith in the context of justification. It does not pass the scriptural test to dismiss that as reference ot what the justified by faith do after they are justified: it says literally that they are justified because -- not by a prior faith but because, -- their works cooperated with their faith and not justified by faith alone.
Further, I am far more lenient toward Luther (if that is your reference to historical Protestantism), and generally to some thought put into the role of works as opposed to latter-day Protestant mindless sloganeering on the subject. Keep that in mind. I think that historical Protestantism really missed an opportunity with the Joint Declaration on Justification. I would like some comment on why, do you think, if "historical" Protestantism really held to some form of Catholicity as regards the "works", did that not result in a movement for the Lutherans to re-unite with the Church in the manner analogous to the Anglicans?
SS can result in a transdenominational unity that is manifestly effectual to the salvation of souls
I see how Sola Scriptura furnishes some basis of interdenominational Protestant unity. That is what slogans generally do: they unite diverse factions under some sufficiently vague banner. But that is not the unity Christ prays for in John 17, where the unity of the Christendom is seen as hypostatic unity of the Holy Trinity. Would you imagine Jesus arguing with the Father whether Man is totally depraved or perhaps just falling to sin in absence of grace; or whether the Cup Jesus drunk was for all or for the Elect? These divisions would be intolerable in any community of faith claiming biblical unity.
The Roman Catholic may argue that cults such as the LDS do not have the historical evidence for their claim, but the efficacy of this argument depends upon the interpretation that formal historical descent is a basis for authenticity, which it is not (and never was totally).
I never mentioned LDS, so I don't see how does that fit in our conversation. I also agree that formal historical descent is not a basis for authenticity even when undisputed. I beleive I gave that example already: the Anglicans and some Lutherans DO have a historical descent from the Apostolic Church. That helped for a while, but in order to be an authentic Church one has to hold to the authentic, that is Catholic, doctrine. The Eastern Orthodox do, and so their Church, hostile as it is sometime to the West, is an authentic Church. The Anglicans and the continuing Lutherans do not, and so their apostolic succession is formal yet not efficatious.
The distinction you make is that the believer goes in faith in order to glorify God, assuming this is in conflict with making his calling and election sure, which it is not.
Well, if it is not, then how do you say that justification is by faith alone? If I want to get to point B from A, and if X is something that makes sure my arrival then I would say, X is necessary for my arrival.
yet Rome disallows being confident you are saved
For that very reason. The scripture says that one has to walk a certain way to "make sure his calling and election". So how can we condone one who has not completed the walk to be confident?
At the same time, Rome doesn not promote the idea that we have no reason for hope. Indeed, we do: one who follows the things the Church has proposed for our salvation is assured of that very salvation.
Rome is the one who is unScriptural here, as it has the convert being made actually righteous in heart by infused righteousness via baptism [...] so he is formally justified by his own personal righteousness and holiness (causa formalis). This is in contrast to righteousness being imputed to him
I bleeped out the reference to the manner of Baptism (infant or not, sprinkled or immersed) as irrelevsant to this thought.
There is no "so". A baptised child (or a man of any age) is not instantaneously becoming righteous. The difference that the sacraments furnishes is that Christ is asked by another believer to protect the child. Yet, it is not imputed righteousness because the child is for the time being actually infused with grace. It would be in fact ridiculous to ask God to "cover up" the sin of a eight days old baby. The baptismal prayer asks God to protect the child from future sin and accept him if he dies before commiting any sin. Truly, now that he is baptised, he "shall be saved" (Mark 16:16), as his belief is his naturally sinless, believing state.
The manner of baptism would only matter in two cases. First, it would matter if actual washing were taking place. In that case not really immersion would make a difference, but use of soap. However, we are told by St Peter that washing of dirt is not the purpose (1 Peter 3:21). Second, that would matter if it were directly commanded in the gospel, such as the certain interpretation of the Eucharist is fixed in John 6 and 1 Cor 11. But there is no such scriptural fix. St. John baptized in a river but St. Peter once asked is water for baptism could be denied (Acts 10:47), suggesting a water held around a house in a bucket. Palestine is an arid place, -- surely a river or pool nearby was a rare occurence. This all being said, the Church does recommend that a full immersion be made wherever practicable.
It is sure strange to see an insistence on full immersion made by people who ordinarily do not believe in any sacraments or, as they call them, rituals, to be ordained by Christ.
Spasibo, "спасибо" is pronounced "spaSEEbo" and means "thank you". The etymology is "may God save", by the way. The response is fairly unpronounceable "пожалуйста", poZHAluysta, "with your will".
The examples of the requirenments of Catholic Faith that you posted rpeceding this statement are simply description of faith such as it is. They are not prohibitions against an examination, perhaps critical, of the Catholic Faith, -- it would be a good thing if such examination is undertaken. They tell us at which point the faith ceases to be Catholic. The demarkation is in itself helpful. For example, many people believe with the Catholics because of the conviction that the Catholic Church is the historical Church founded by Christ. For this historical approach is is very helpful to know what historically was held as crossing a line into heresy.
the primary Orthodox disagreement is a fundamental one, the very primacy and infallibility of the pope upon which Rome rises and falls
Rome does not "rise and fall" on that. We are well aware that the historical developments particularly in the West (consider the feudal fragmentation not fully experienced in the East and later the Protestant heresy) -- priduced a highly centralized Roman Church, whereas the Orthodox East that had to deal with military enemy of the Islam rather than a heresy -- had to develop the precisely opposite, decentralized model in order to survive. Rome does not hold the same rigid line vis a vis the Uniate Churches who are not infected with either Protestantism or relativism. We repeatedly have said that the Eastern Orthodox Church is, as far as we are concerned, ready for reunioon as it is today, with the concept of papacy that it holds today.
Usually wins?? Only as defined by her
Naturally. I do not get your references to some possible misconduct, but the fact remains that Rome views itself as an apostolic, that is one preserving an historical deposit, church.
that is called a extrapolation, as what you see is a promise made to an individual, not to posterity [in reference to the promises of the infallible Church and papacy in Matthew 16:18 and Luke 22:31-32[
No, the text does not suggest that. First, there is nothing in the text to suggest anything less than a cosmic promise. To offer "the gates/powers of Hell shall not prevail against my Church" or "thy brethren will be sifted like wheat but I pray to thee to confirm them" in the context of a divine revelation asserted to be given to Peter and the solemnity of the Last Supper is to severely understate the gospel. Second, the person of Peter is significantly undermined in those very passage: Peter is one who will deny Christ, and one who tries to persuade Jesus to abandon His mission.
Christ being it [the Rock]
That is exactly the point. Were Christ not typified by the rock, we might say that it is one of forms of praise, like calling John an dJames the sons of Thunder. But here we have a real delegation of authority, and it is the only context in which "feed my sheep" makes sense.
when James the brother of John died (Mt. 10:2; Acts 12:2) no successor is mentioned, nor a provision made for selecting one as was made for Judas. It is incongruous that the Holy Spirit of truth would not have made that manifest if it were to be so, while the criteria for ordaining elders/bishops (same office, and not a separate class of sacerdotal priests) was faith and character, (1Tim. 3:1-7) which would exclude many papal successors from even being church members. (1Cor. 5:11-13)
St. James' martyrdom was in the context of a Church fully functioning. For example, St. Paul -- not a natural apostle -- was already active as an equeal to the apostles bishop of the Church. The Church was no longer a Hebrew institution. That must mark the time when the pivot from the Church of the Twelve to the Catholic Church of very many was accomplished.
The very idea that preservation of the faith requires [a magisterium] is a contradiction
Where in the scripture do we see it? I see where it is scriptural: "the Holy Ghost hath placed you bishops, to rule the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood" (Acts Of Apostles 20:28).
you won't get far in any most evangelical denominations if you disagree with fundamentals either, and historically those who have were marked as heretics
The Catholic Church allows a great lenience in interpreting of the scripture while she is quite specific as to what doctrines are Catholic. That is consistent with the Catholic method whereby it is the Church rather than the scripture which is the rule of faith. The fault that I see here is not in the Catholics avoiding to fix an interpretation to the scripture we already hold inerrant, but with the Protestants who would allow notions that cannot at the same time be true, like whether or not there is a free will, -- to co-exist.
disallowing the law being given by the hand of Moses, is contrary to how the Bible interprets itself, and this and more is contrary to her claim to be the uniquely infallible interpreter of Scripture
Certainly, if you are of the opinion that the Old Testament iterprets itself, the you should keep kosher and reject Acts 15 which contravened the Mosaic law. But if you consider Christianity to be true religion, then i=you have to understand that the law of Moses was replaced in Christianity by law of grace.
seeking to be like a Berean and continue to use their means
.. is a good thing and I am convinced that anyone who honestly examines the Holy Scripture wil end up if not Catholic of the Western mold, then Eastern Orthodox.
EENS is yet disputed among Roman Catholics and Vatican Two is in contrast to the most historical understand of it, but Rome lost her secular teeth needed to carry out her animosity against men like Huss, Tyndale, etc.
Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus is understood as it always has been, that when an dif one is saved, he is saved as a Roman Catholic. We don't know if Hus or Tyndale were saved. Our best effort was to ensure their salvation. If they were, they were Catholic when they died. It si not too late by the way, to pray for Hus, Luther, Tyndale, Bruno, or any other heretic.
Annalex: We are judged by our works (Rm 2:6-10, Mt 25:31-46).
Daniel: And rightly so, as how can faith or love be judged except by what it does?
Indeed. So works are how we are justified.
Mormons say the like
I did not know that the Mormons claimed to have the sacraments, but if they do, it should not be our criterion what they mistakenly think of themselves.
What typical passes for religion in Rome is perfunctory professions
No. Professions are means to an end, but they are not "religion". It is, in fact the cornerstone Protestnat error to think that confessional faith is alone salvific. A profession of faith that is deeply held, and a profession of faith that is "perfunctory" are equally irrelevant to salvation. Here's the parable to explain:
A certain man had two sons; and coming to the first, he said: Son, go work today in my vineyard.  And he answering, said: I will not. But afterwards, being moved with repentance, he went.  And coming to the other, he said in like manner. And he answering, said: I go, Sir; and he went not.  Which of the two did the father's will? They say to him: The first. Jesus saith to them: Amen I say to you, that the publicans and the harlots shall go into the kingdom of God before you
The saving faith does the works. The perfunctory faith feels the feel.
Annalex I have not seen a verse that cannot be easily and in context explained, again, barring attempts at explainign the miraculous. Many tried, on this thread alone.
Daniel You made the assertion, now you must prove it.
Prove it how? I stated, there is no X. Prove to me by showing X.
Catholics last in Bible reading, with one study (Rasmussen) also showing 44% of Catholics rarely or never read the Bible (apart from church)
Naturally. It is not a good thing, but it shows that Bible reading in itself is not anything salvific.
Any way you cut it, just going to Mass will NOT give a functional knowledge of Scripture.
It is good to read the scripture. It is also good, in fact, critical for salvation, to go to Mass. The scripture read at Mass is essential scripture and it combines the Old and the New Testaments together so that a deeper understanding is acheived. I don't know what "functional knowldege" is; I agree that biblical apologetics among the Catholics is poor.
the Lord and His disciples were good at proving their claims by Scripture.
It is something the Catholics need to get better at.
the Immaculate Conception of Mary, her perpetual virginity, and Assumption, praying to the departed, mandated Priestly celibacy (except some converts), more resembles the work of cults. That is because these do not depend upon Biblical warrant,
No, they do not. so why do you mentin them? I diod not say, "everything the Church teaches in in the Bible". I said, "everything the Bible says, the Church also teaches". see the difference?
Rome's claim to authority rests upon self-proclamation of her supreme authority, not Biblical manifestation of the truth.
It rests on the authority you can ascertain from the Bible, such as the authority to "bind and loose" (Mt 16-18). It also rests on the continuing existence of the same church through 2 thousand years. Howeverm, no one is claiming that no interpretation of the Bible can be found that is not in a seeming contradiction to the Church. It is just not a real contradiction.
your judgment must be dismissed as you cannot concede that anything in opposition to Rome's official teaching can be true
I do say that. But you are still at liberty to offer your opposition, and if I do not have a reasonable argument for Rome, the reader will see that. so far, I did not see anythign that would objectively be a challenge to Rome; I have seem agreement on the essential point, that works of charity and faith are necessary. I also have seen much backpedaling form that biblical fact. I really would like to get that part of the argument done with, so if you have an rgument on how Matthew 25:31-46 does not teach justification by works of charity, I would like to pursue that.
I agree 100%. It is equally, if not more, true with the Greeks and the Arabs.
I reject prooftexts such as these because they do not say that works have no role in justification; not "out of hand".
 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory, but not before God.  For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was reputed to him unto justice.  Now to him that worketh, the reward is not reckoned according to grace, but according to debt.  But to him that worketh not, yet believeth in him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is reputed to justice, according to the purpose of the grace of God.
 As David also termeth the blessedness of a man, to whom God reputeth justice without works:  Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the man to whom the Lord hath not imputed sin.  This blessedness then, doth it remain in the circumcision only, or in the uncircumcision also? For we say that unto Abraham faith was reputed to justice.  How then was it reputed? When he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.
 And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the justice of the faith, which he had, being uncircumcised; that he might be the father of all them that believe, being uncircumcised, that unto them also it may be reputed to justice:  And might be the father of circumcision; not to them only, that are of the circumcision, but to them also that follow the steps of the faithful, that is in the uncircumcision of our father Abraham.  For not through the law was the promise to Abraham, or to his seed, that he should be heir of the world; but through the justice of faith.  For if they who are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, the promise is made of no effect.  For the law worketh wrath. For where there is no law, neither is there transgression.
We see here that while the short prooftext, "to that worketh not but believeth" seems to support Sola Fide, the large context makes clear that the kind of works St. Paul is talking about are circumcision, works of the law. This distinction escaped Luther and his co-traditionalists.
salvific faith is not one that is not alone, but obeys
but what such texts [Eph 2:8-10] do not do is make works meritorious for salvation, which Rome does
Ephesians 2 says that we are saved by grace and not by our own merit. It also says that both faith and works are responses to grace. Matthew 25:34-35, however, directly links salvation to the good works. So, good works are "meritorious for salvation" in the sense that one who works them receives salvation from Christ according to His purpose and grace, not in the sense that one who works them produces his own salvation by works. The word "merit" is overused by anti-Catohlic to insert a meaning that is not in the Catholic usage.
while there may also be other motives, it is incongruous that Paul would not have made a distinction as to types of works when disallowing them as the meritorious basis for justification.
He surely made such a distinction. In Romans 2:6-10, for example, we see that good works result in salvation yet in Romans 3:28 we read that works of the law do not justify. Most his letters end up with exhortations to good works, including romans and Galatians, even though their central theme is that works of the law are not salvific.
[Eph. 2:8] means not of works a regards how one appropriates imputed righteousness
It simply means that grace is not of works altogether. You know you don't have a scriptural proof for imputed versus infused justification in the New Testament (you have, not surprisingly, in the Old), but that is another topic.
If you want to object to slogans, i might want to list some what Rome has come up with
Slogans are fine if they are accurate. They get in the way when they are not. To say that justification is by faith alone and at the same time say that works are necessary to be justified is doublespeak which should at the very least cause you to drop the slogan.
the Italian Bibles of Geneva (1476) and of Venice (1538) say [in Romans 3:28] "per sola fede." , etc.
Neither the Greek original or Jerome's Bible have the equivalent of "alone". The insertion in itself is a natural one to make, in order to underscore "rather than by works of the law". Luther did more than just use dynamic translation; he built the entire theological fantasy upon it.
as one researcher finds neither was Rome completely unified in its soteriology before Trent
Possibly. This is how faith advances in general: something gets proposed, analyzed adn then the doctrine is refined. No one is blaming Luther for starting the discussion; if it were nto for his questioning, there would be no Trent. And now, thank God, we have Trent and our faith is clearer and stronger.
by forcing James to make works meritorious for eternal life life can you convert his writings
I don't need to convert them; he says clearly, "by works a man is justified; and not by faith only". Justified means meriting eternal life, no?
That the same Apostle James saw the Gentiles justified by faith is not contradicting James 2, since St. James (nor St. Peter, who speaks in Acts 15:7-9) never states that we are justified by faith alone. We are justified by works cooperating with our faith.
... more later.
It is not about the purity of Jesus; it is about the exposure of Mary to the purity of God Almighty. If Mary were impure, would she be able to withstand exposure to the purity of Almighty God. I spoke of the tabernacle of her womb which is analogous to the tabernacle of the Jews. Was that impure? Who was that accessible to? What happened when the impure came in contact with it? What happened when the Jews used it as a weapon?
My question is about the ramifications upon Mary, not God if the expressed beliefs about Mary actually occurred.
You don’t know that Jewishness is matrilinear? I will attribute that to your lack of Catholic knowledge as well.
The only problem with that is that we understand that the NT Scripture is massaged by the Church and harmonized during the first six centuries.
Reading the scripture according to the Protestant charlatan-a-day is virtually guaranteed to be false since they assume their own interpretative authority in the light of, at the oldest, traditions of 15c, which is after any cultural continuity with the Apostolic times was long lost.
Come on, bb. You are a sola member. What do all three passages actually say? Jesus had no problem with him following the laws as well as he did. Jesus had no problem with his deeds. Except for the deed that Jesus laid on him after the fact, so to speak. I'm sorry if you don't think that the doing of the individual are deeds, but they are.
I have told you what the passages are saying - several times now. Why don't you save me the guessing game and you tell me what you think the passages are saying. Remember, though, that no verse should be read by itself but in context with the other Scriptures.
You can believe that if you want. It’s just another thing the Catholic church gets wrong, I guess.
Read the Bible some time. The genealogies are through the father.
I had to check with one of my kids about the name of the movie. It was Minority Report I was thinking of.
Even if Mary were the perfect child, nobody would have known she was sinless because they didn’t know her heart. And how many times do you know of where people do the right thing and are still accused of wrongdoing.
And being found pregnant out of wedlock certainly wouldn’t have done much to convince the neighbors of her sinlessness.
I can see it now. *You’re pregnant with WHO? Yeah, rrriiiiight. That’s what they all say. -snicker- *
No, you've told me your interpretation of it several times now. That is not the view of the Church or of most Christians. This is a matter of deeds, as well as attitude.
If I cannot convince to look up Jewish matrilinearity, then I suppose that I cannot convince you of anything else in the universe. You see, this is yet again that the anti Catholics spurn not only Almighty God, but also the realities of this world.
Well of course I told you my interpretation of the stated verses as you have also done, now. We differ on what Jesus was really saying to the "rich, young man". Here is the passage from Matthew:
16 Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?
17 Why do you ask me about what is good? Jesus replied. There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.
18 Which ones? he inquired. Jesus replied, You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony,
19 honor your father and mother,and love your neighbor as yourself.
20 All these I have kept, the young man said. What do I still lack?
21 Jesus answered, If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.
22 When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.
23 Then Jesus said to his disciples, Truly I tell you, it is hard for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven.
24 Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.
25 When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, Who then can be saved?
26 Jesus looked at them and said, With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.
So...my question about this episode is did the young man really tell the truth about never breaking any of the commandments? I believe he thought he was as perfect as a man could be. But, we know that Jesus taught that obeying the commandments of God meant more than just the outward acts but the inward as well. He told the Pharisees about hate being as murder, lust the same as adultery, etc. so it is the spirit of the law and not just the letter of the law. My contention is that this man was self-deluded and Jesus pointed out to him his actual sinful state. Notice, too, that nowhere is there a commandment to give everything you have to the poor.
I thought it curious that when the guy asks Jesus "Which ones?" and Jesus listed them, he did not list the first, greatest commandment, "And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.". Did you notice that? When the guy left, dejected, it was as I said, he knew he could never trust Christ that much and his money meant more to him. A person who thinks this way - and not just about money - is really saying they don't believe in God. If they really did think that God was real and that by rejecting him they were condemned to eternity in Hell, how many people would still reject him?
To trust in Jesus Christ for my salvation means that I truly cast myself upon his throne of grace, I will not put anything in my life above him, I surrender my entire self to him, whatever he asks me to do, I will do because he is my Lord and Savior. So I hope you can see now that I have not discounted anything that Jesus was saying here, I just in hindsight can understand his point better than the man in the story or the followers of Jesus did. Even they asked him, "Who then can be saved?". Yikes, they thought even we won't make it if that's what is required. Jesus said, "With man this is IMPOSSIBLE, but with God all things are possible." Man cannot save himself, he can never be as perfect as God and until he sees his need for grace and mercy, he will not ever have eternal life. Just as Jesus said, "There is only one who is good.", and we know he meant God. This man and all mankind must come to the point of realization that no one is as good as God nor can he ever attain it apart from Christ. We will have the righteousness of God through faith in Christ.
II Cor. 5:21
For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
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