Tagged: pope Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Ron Thomas 3:24 pm on 2015-12-01 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , pontiff, pope,   

    The Pontiff Said… 

    It is remarkable to me that some continue to express uncertainty about truth. Note the following:
    The Pontiff recently concluded his three-country tour of Africa, visiting the Central African Republic, Uganda, and Kenya.
    The Christian Post reports that during an in-flight press conference on his return trip to Rome, Francis stated,“We Catholics have some–and not some, many–who believe they possess the absolute truth and go ahead dirtying the other with calumny, with disorientation, and doing evil. They do evil. I say this because it is my Church.”
    He added that “ideas and false certainties” can replace faith, love, and God.
    Was Jesus correct when He said one could KNOW the truth, and with this knowledge be set free from sin (John 8:31-32)? Of course He was correct! If that is so, then the “pontiff” was surely not correct in this sentiment.
    Maybe Catholics are a bit uncertain about truth – and this would stand to reason considering their oral tradition takes such precedence like it does. Oral tradition in biblical matters, however, have no room for growth.
    Whatever is to be said about the Catholic Church’s man-made leader, to the Christian, he is not to be listened to.
     
  • Eugene Adkins 6:29 am on 2014-10-21 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , pope   

    I guess they do believe in personal interpretation after all 

    During the last couple of years in the ole’ blogosphere I have been accused by Catholic apologists of self-popery. And why such an accusation? Because I dared to have “a personal interpretation” of the Bible that disagreed with them and with the pope’s!

    In the Catholic Church, one’s doctrine is not determined by the revealed and written word alone – it is determined by those who make determinations based upon orally determining factors (a.k.a. making up the rules as you go) that shape the determination of God’s will in God’s word. Therefore to rest upon the written word of God alone is to be mistaken, and studying to show yourself approved (2 Timothy 2:15) need not apply since the studying has already been done for you. You just need to study what has already been studied and follow what those personal studies determined for you to study and personally believe.

    Case in point is the latest issue the Catholic Church is having with the pope’s willingness to actually “have a debate” on the sinfulness of homosexuality. The reason I bring this up is that there should be no debate at all – none whatsoever. And why not? Because the word of God has settled the issue, but unfortunately the written word of God is not enough for the Catholic Church.

    I know, I know. Many Catholic apologists will say “the issue is more complicated” than what I’m presenting it to be. And my response to that is “it’s only complicated because the pope (the pride and head of the Catholic Church) is complicating a very uncomplicated biblical issue and it’s making a lot of Catholics feel uncomfortable.” It’s actually a case of the pope wanting to do something but the Catholic Church has decided that personal interpretations do indeed matter after all.

    Following the closing of this latest “synod session” it was released to the press that, “This synod will be followed by a year of consultations, and a follow-up questionnaire will be sent out to dioceses around the world. A second, larger synod will then be held in October 2015After that, the results will be handed to the Argentinian pope, who will have the final say in outlining the Church’s stance on family matters.”

    A questionnaire? Why that would involve making personal interpretations wouldn’t it? Why not just speak “ex cathedra” and get it over with. After all, when the “ex cathedra” starts talking, the Catholic Church has no other choice but to listen because the pope can do no wrong when he starts dictating what is and what is not right for the Catholic Church to believe. But I really do wonder what would happen to all the Catholics if the very “papa” who could do no wrong actually told the majority of the people who make up the Catholic Church that their personal interpretation was wrong on this issue? I wonder how open they’d be to personal interpretation then? But then again, why would the pope do that? After all, who is he to judge?

    You see, the irony of the whole matter to me is that while I have been accused of self-popery multiple times over the last couple of years, because I have dared to have an opinion that disagrees with “Catholic Oral Tradition”, the reality of the matter is that the Catholic Church actually has a pope in authority who could be accused of the very thing I’m supposedly guilty of – self-popery! For if the Catholic Church had always had the right answer on this issue then how can this discussion be anything but wrong?

    The spiritual leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics had called for the Church to take a more merciful approach to unmarried mothers, remarried divorcees and gays, famously saying of homosexuals, “Who am I to judge?”” (see the above link for the quote source)

    So much for that Catholic unity. And may we all learn a valuable lesson about biblical authority from this situation.

    Related Article:

     
    • Joseph Richardson 2:03 pm on 2014-10-21 Permalink | Reply

      Hey Eugene. The Catholic view of interpreting Scripture really in no way resembles “making it up as you go” (arguably, this is the way many non-Catholics view it). We interpret it, largely, the way it’s always been interpreted. “Studying to show yourself approved by God” really ought to, you know, involve studying the way Christians have read and interpreted Scripture from the very beginning.

      I think you are misinterpreting the meaning and outcome of the synod on the family — along with many in the secular media. You are bound to get a warped view of Pope Francis and of the Catholic Church in general if you’re only going on what they say. If you have read any of what Pope Francis has actually said and written, “the sinfulness of homosexuality” is not a question of “debate” for him (though it may be, I admit, a question a few liberal bishops would like to raise). The oft-reported “Who am I to judge?” quote has been taken grossly out of context: what the pope said was, he had no place to judge a priest who had homosexual attractions and tendencies but who lived a celibate life in accord with the Church’s teachings. Sin is sin, and of that there is no question or doubt.

      The larger issue that the synod considered, and which indeed there has been a lot of debate about, is the best way for pastors to approach Catholics who have been civilly divorced and remarried outside the Church — who, in the Catholic understanding, are now “living in sin” and are not allowed to receive the Eucharist. Some (more liberal) would have the Church relax these restrictions, since sin is so widespread, but again, but if you read the final report of the synod, the gathered bishops reaffirmed the sanctity and sacramentality of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Despite what the media would tell you, and what activists would like to make it, homosexuality was a minor and marginal concern. (How best to minister to homosexuals in the light and truth of the Gospel of Christ is always something worth discussing, and this is what was discussed.)

      • Eugene Adkins 6:52 pm on 2014-10-23 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Joseph.

        My friend, it sounds like you’re making a molehill out of a mountain.

        • Joseph Richardson 7:37 pm on 2014-10-23 Permalink | Reply

          For a more realistic view of your “mountains,” you might try reading some conservative Catholic news sources. My favorite is the National Catholic Register. There is a lot of concern about this, but you are getting a very distorted perspective.

    • Jack 6:44 pm on 2014-10-21 Permalink | Reply

      Interpretation is the assignment of meaning to that which is not self evident. In other words_ opinion which denies the existence of truth and surely invites comparisons as opposed to what can be known.

      “But do not let immorality or any impurity or greed even be named among you, as is proper among saints; and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this YOU KNOW WITH CERTAINTY, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and GOD.
      (Ephesians 5:3-5)

      “And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge GOD any longer, GOD gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are a gossips, slanderers, haters of GOD, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; and, ALTHOUGH THEY KNOW the ordinance of GOD, that those who practice such things are worthy of a death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.
      (Romans 1:28-32)

  • Eugene Adkins 6:50 am on 2013-10-25 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , pope, , , ,   

    Random Thoughts (and a few links) for the Weekend 

    Doc Phillips, who is one of the fellows here in TFR, wrote a post on his congregation’s blog that includes some powerful examples of some individuals hunger for the word of God and then makes a couple of applications for the American culture to consider. Check it out sometime. I’m going to use it in our bulletin soon enough.

    It has been said and asked, and rightly so, “Will you set your eyes on that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away like an eagle toward heaven.” (Proverbs 23:5) Talk about a timeless truth that still preaches! In a recent story about the Navy’s first supercarrier, the USS Forrestal, it was revealed that this ship, which once wore the title of the world’s biggest ship ever built, could be set to be sold for a penny – yes, I said one little lowly ole’ American penny! The ship “which took an estimated $217 million — nearly $2 billion in today’s dollars — to build” didn’t necessarily see its value fly away, but it sure did sink like a rock while staying afloat, didn’t it?

    The “pope” recently took action against a “bishop” who was living in a multi (and I mean multi) million dollar residence according to this story. It was said that “pope” “Francis has made clear he expects his bishops to live simply, setting as an example his own humble lifestyle.” I guess that’s his way of saying no one is allowed to live in a more expensive residence or carry a bigger cross made of solid gold than him!

    This coming Sunday morning in Bible class we’re going to look at the basic layout of the Tabernacle of God that Moses and the children of Israel built. We started the study last week and I think it’s going to continue to be a profitable one. The Tabernacle has a lot of shadowy, not dark but shadowy, lessons that can be revealed and learned by today’s Christians through the light of the Gospel (Hebrews 8:5; 9:9, 23 and 2 Corinthians 3). From learning to have the proper mindset toward sin, God and the atonement that He offers to the way that Jesus can be seen in the Tabernacle’s furnishings I’m looking forward to studying this series out with my brothers and sisters in Christ.

    Look for a way to help someone see the Way today!

     
  • John T. Polk II 11:35 pm on 2013-06-17 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "show of humility", , , , , , , , pope, , ,   

    God and “The Pope” Agree! 

              According to the “Living faith” section C of The Huntsville Times, Friday, June 14, 2013, the article on Religion & Church News carried an item titled, “NO, I did not want to be Pope.” It was an interview from McClatchy-Tribune that quoted the 3-month-in-office “Pope” of the Roman Catholic Church, Francis, as saying: “’No, I didn’t want to be pope. A person who wants to be pope does not love himself,’ the pontiff added, in a trademark show of humility.’”  Based upon his comments, God would agree that:

    1. Since “Pope” is a Latin term for “father,” and since Jesus Christ forbade anyone using the term “father” as a term for a spiritual leader (Matthew 23:9), then God would agree that Francis should not be “pope!”

    2. Francis “didn’t want to be pope,” a position which is supposed to be the head of the Roman Catholic Church. But the Apostle Paul claimed that “the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ephesians 3:9-11). Since God’s “mighty power” raised Jesus from the dead and “put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Ephesians 1:22-23), then God placed Jesus Christ over His church, not a “pope!” Thus, God would agree that He didn’t want Francis to be “pope” over the church!”

    3. Francis said, “A person who wants to be pope does not love himself.” God’s Word has said that, after “the falling away,” “and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4), but whose followers would be “among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved” (2 Thessalonians 2:10), then Francis must not “love himself” for taking the position of apostasy that God condemns! God would agree that any man who takes such a position “does not love himself” or the truth, either!

    4. Contrary to the article cited above, there is no “trademark show of humility” in anyone who opposes God, sits in God’s temple, or claims to forgive sins which only God can do (Matthew 9:1-8)! Jesus Christ condemned public displays of the Pharisees, which are remarkably like that of a “pope:” “all their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments. They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues” (Matthew 23:5-6). No “pope” has ever manifested a “trademark show of humility,” while claiming to be equal with God! The real head of the church of Christ, “humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:8). No “pope” has ever humbled himself to die on a cross for the church of Christ! God would agree that there is no “trademark show of humility” in this, or any other “pope.”

    It’s too bad the “pope” refuses to tell his followers what Jesus said would give salvation in Mark 16:16: “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” Will this “pope” agree with God?

     
    • Joseph Richardson 3:31 pm on 2013-06-22 Permalink | Reply

      Catholics do believe in Christ and are baptized (and do believe they are saved by that faith).

      • John T. Polk II 4:01 pm on 2013-06-22 Permalink | Reply

        Joseph,
        Believing in Christ includes the fact that He is the only Mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5), but why, then, do Catholics use Mary as their Mediatrix?
        “Baptism” throughout the New Testament was a “burial” (Romans 6:3-4), but what Catholics are taught that it is an immersion?
        Mark 16:16 is Jesus’ statement concerning salvation, and it is to be defined as His Holy Spirit led the Apostles to write about these factors (John 16:7-13; Jude 3), not as “Roman Catholicism” has changed its terms over the centuries. What “pope” has explained Mark 16:16 with these Scriptures?
        Thank you for reading and replying. Please tell me wherein this answer isn’t helpful.

        • Joseph Richardson 4:32 pm on 2013-06-22 Permalink | Reply

          Hi John, glad to be reading. I reckon you are a neighbor. I’ve grown up in and live in Decatur; I lived in Huntsville for a few years before I moved back here, and consider Huntsville my second home.

          Catholics definitely affirm that Christ is the only Mediator between God and man, as Scripture itself affirms. Mary is a mediator (“mediatrix” is just the Latin feminine) in the sense that she intercedes for us — in the same way we intercede for each other. That’s not the same way Christ is Mediator, in the sacred relationship between the Persons of God in the Trinity — He doesn’t just intercede; He intervenes.

          I could give you a lot of quotes, but then then would be very long. So here’s just a bit:

          There is but one Mediator as we know from the words of the apostle, ‘for there is one God and one mediator of God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a redemption for all. ‘ (1 Tim. 2:5-6) The maternal duty of Mary toward men in no wise obscures or diminishes this unique mediation of Christ, but rather shows His power. (Lumen Gentium (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church), Second Vatican Council, 1964)

          Regarding Baptism — the Church definitely teaches that immersion is the ideal method. Infusion (pouring) has been practiced in some cases since the very beginning of the Church, probably since Pentecost itself (how else are you going to baptize 3,000 men in a day, and their families?), and continuing to other cases of necessity (being being baptized on their deathbeds and the like). Pouring didn’t really become as common as it is today until the Middle Ages (there are medieval immersion baptisteries all over Europe), but recently more and more Catholic churches are going back to immersion. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says:

          The essential rite of the sacrament follows: Baptism properly speaking. It signifies and actually brings about death to sin and entry into the life of the Most Holy Trinity through configuration to the Paschal mystery of Christ. Baptism is performed in the most expressive way by triple immersion in the baptismal water. However, from ancient times it has also been able to be conferred by pouring the water three times over the candidate’s head. (CCC 1239)

          According to the Didache, believed to be the oldest Christian document outside the Bible, possibly dated as early A.D. 60 or 70:

          And concerning baptism, baptize this way: Having first said all these things, baptize into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19) in living water. But if you have not living water, baptize into other water; and if you can not in cold, in warm. But if you have not either, pour out water thrice upon the head into the name of Father and Son and Holy Spirit.

          I’m not sure what you mean about the Catholic Church changing its terms. But definitely, through Baptism we die with Christ and are buried and born again (Romans 6:3-4, John 3:5); we receive the Holy Spirit and become a part of Christ’s Body (Gal 3:27, 1 Cor 12:13, Eph 4:5).

    • John T. Polk II 1:38 pm on 2013-06-24 Permalink | Reply

      Joseph, you have proven my point: Nothing in the New Testament teaches Roman Catholic doctrine. You claim “Mary is a mediator” who “intercedes for us” but “not the same way Christ is Mediator.” In the New Testament, “mediator” is used of the Prophets Moses (Galatians 3:19-20) and Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 8:6; 9:15; 12:24), AND NOT ONCE OF MARY, OR CHRISTIANS FOR ONE ANOTHER! Roman Catholicism has had to add Mary as a Mediatrix after God finished writing the New Testament! That explains what you were not sure of when you said: “I’m not sure what you mean about the Catholic Church changing its terms.”
      All of the next quotes you used to establish RC doctrine were written after, and outside of, the New Testament, and therefore are worthless for “the faith” (Jude 3), for it was “once for all delivered to the saints” by the end of the 1st Century. It is meaningless to try to define “the faith” by quoting: (Lumen Gentium (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church), Second Vatican Council, 1964); The Catechism of the Catholic Church; (CCC 1239); the Didache; none of which are contained inside the New Testament.
      IF, as you say, “Catholics do believe in Christ and are baptized (and do believe they are saved by that faith),” then why would they not simply obey the terms of faith and baptism as described in the New Testament, without any or all of the additions of the Roman Catholic Church? “Baptism,” which itself means “immersion,” was never a sprinkling or pouring in the New Testament. Since immersion was required, the logistics involved on the Day of Pentecost were solved by the Apostles without changing “immersion” into “sprinkling;” and there is no New Testament record of any “being baptized on their deathbeds and the like.”
      By-the-way, you haven’t even begun to deal with my original premise: The office of RC “pope” has no New Testament right to even exist, nor is qualified to be the head of the church of Christ!

  • Ed Boggess 8:20 am on 2013-05-13 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , pope   

    A bogus bishop nearly sneaked into the closed-door Vatican meeting of the world’s cardinals as they prepared to choose the next pope. Ralph Napierski got past a checkpoint of Swiss Guards and was photographed shaking hands with Cardinals in the cobblestone square to the left of St. Peter’s Basilica. But he never made it inside to loin the more than 140 cardinals from around the world for their first formal meeting since the resignation of Pope Benedict. His undersized cassock, purple rather than red sash and fedora rather than a zucchetto, the typical skullcap, gave him away. When discovered, he was hustled out of the Vatican. I’m not sure what he hoped to accomplish, but it certainly reminds us that there are plenty of folks who are not all they pretend to be. This is Just-A-Minute with Ed Boggess

     
  • TFRStaff 2:03 pm on 2013-03-21 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , pope   

    A big deal about the pope 

    The news media and the world have made a big deal about the appointment of the new Pope.

    Our world is very careless about religion and religious terms. During this time while the Catholic Church was appointing a new Pope, I never heard anyone ask, “Is there a Pope in the Bible?” No one seems to care about God’s arrangement for the church.

    Even the word “church” is used most often in unbiblical ways in our world today. People speak of “the church” when they are talking about the building where the church meets. Some use the word “church” when speaking of a denomination or all the denominations; denomination and our Lord’s church are totally different things.

    The church is men and women who have been called out of the word and called into Jesus Christ. When Saul persecuted the church he dragged “men and women” off to prison.

    “And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles. And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him. As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.” (Acts 8:1-3)

    This church was not built upon Peter nor was he the first Pope! (More …)

     
    • John Henson 9:23 pm on 2013-03-21 Permalink | Reply

      This is part of my radio program this week. I said, “Those who study logic know we must only draw conclusions that are supported by the evidence. Any conclusion not supported by evidence is an assumption and assumptions can get people into trouble. We need to stay on firm ground by making sure that all the conclusions we draw are supported by biblical evidence.”

    • Joseph Richardson 10:30 pm on 2013-03-21 Permalink | Reply

      Hi. You seem pretty resolute in your views, so I suppose that you are probably not open to reconsidering them. But you have quite a lot of misconceptions and misunderstandings about what the Catholic Church teaches in the above, and quite a lot of unfair accusations and charges. I would hope that as a Christian you would be willing to listen to another view in charity before you go about accusing your Christian brothers and sisters of practicing a “false religion.” I assure you, Catholics are just as much Christian as you are, following the same Christ, believing the same Gospel, trusting in the same grace. Addressing your post: To begin with, most topically: nobody supposes that the office of “pope” is in the Bible; but “pope” in an honorific title for the bishop of Rome, and the office of bishop (episkopos or “overseer”) is quite in the Bible.

      • Eugene Adkins 6:55 am on 2013-03-22 Permalink | Reply

        Hello Joseph,

        I’ll only make this one reply for there are many, many sources on why what you have said about the “pope” is wrong. If you believe that the catholic office of the pope is only honorary then I believe you misunderstand what the catholic church teaches about the office. The catholic church teaches, among many other false things, that the pope is the earthly head of the church. The church has only one head in Heaven and on the earth, and that is Jesus Christ who rules the earthly church from Heaven (Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:18). Jesus never installed an earthly head, Jesus never asked for an earthly head nor does Jesus need an earthly head. If the catholic church followed/believed the same gospel they would not transfer heavenly authority to an earthly man who holds an earthly office that causes people to fall down and kiss his ring like earthly idolaters (Acts 10:25-26). This may sound harsh, but you must believe that I am not saying to be harsh; I am saying what I am saying because it is the truth. Look to Heaven, not to Rome. And by the way, one of the requirements according to the Bible for a man to be a bishop is that he must be married and he must have children (1 Timothy 3:1-7). And no catechism will ever change that edict from Heaven.

        God bless in your studies, Joseph.

        • Joseph Richardson 2:14 pm on 2013-03-22 Permalink | Reply

          I know very well what my Church teaches, since God has devoted my life to it. I said that the title “pope,” to which you objected on the grounds that it can’t be found in Scripture, is an honorific one; “papa” in Latin is an affectionate term along the lines of “daddy.” The office is another matter.
          As I said, you have some misconceptions. The Catholic Church does not claim that the successor of Peter is the “earthly head” of the Church: as you say, there is only one Head, and that is Christ. Cf. the Catechism:

          “Christ is the Head of this Body”
          792. Christ “is the head of the body, the Church.” He is the principle of creation and redemption. Raised to the Father’s glory, “in everything he [is] preeminent,” especially in the Church, through whom he extends his reign over all things.
          807. The Church is this Body of which Christ is the head: she lives from him, in him, and for him; he lives with her and in her.

          The office of Peter and his successors is merely as the Church’s pastor, its shepherd, the vicar (stand-in, substitute, or representative — not replacement) of Christ:

          936. The Lord made St. Peter the visible foundation of his Church. He entrusted the keys of the Church to him. The bishop of the Church of Rome, successor to St. Peter, is “head of the college of bishops, the Vicar of Christ and Pastor of the universal Church on earth” (CIC, can. 331).

          Surely you don’t object to pastors, called by God to be the shepherds of their churches? Just as God never left His people Israel without His authoritative voice — through prophets, priests, and kings — Jesus will never leave His people the Church without an authoritative shepherd. And Scripture affirms that He did not.
          I think an honest reading of Scripture requires one to acknowledge that Jesus did delegate His authority, first to the Twelve Apostles as a group and then to Peter in particular. The references I could cite are numerous, but I will give you just a few of the most prominent and explicit:

          Matthew 10:1: And He called to Him His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction.Matthew 10:5–8:These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay.” v. 40: “Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me.”

          By Jesus’s own words, His gave authority to His disciples, and they received something from Him: the authority to carry out their ministry in His name. He sends them out as His representatives: “Whoever receives you receives me.”

          Matthew 18:18, to the Twelve, in the context of dealing out church discipline: “Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

          Binding and loosing are rabbinical terms and concepts, which, according to the Jewish Encyclopedia, mean “to forbid and permit” with regard to doctrinal and disciplinary pronouncements, such that “they [those with this authority; in the context of the article, the Pharisees] possessed and exercised the power of tying or untying a thing by the spell [i.e. word or formula] of their divine authority, just as they could, by the power vested in them, pronounce and revoke an anathema upon a person.” “This power and authority, vested in the rabbinical body of each age or in the Sanhedrin, received its ratification and final sanction from the celestial court of justice.” I don’t know how you read this, but it sounds very clear to me, first that this authority was Jesus’s to invest in whom He chose (surely the Pharisees would have considered this a gross blasphemy), and second that He invested that authority in His Apostles.

          Matthew 16:17–19, to Peter solely (using singular pronouns and verbs), after Peter confessed Jesus as the Christ: And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

          Protestants like to reject the “upon this rock” statement with an argument involving the supposed difference between πέτρος and πέτρα in the Greek — but this argument does not hold any weight in Greek, as even most knowledgable Protestant scholars of Greek admit. Jesus’s wordplay between Peter’s name, explicitly stated, “You are Peter (Rock),” and the “rock” upon which Jesus said He would found His Church, mirrors grammatically Peter’s statement: “You are the Christ.”
          What is more, that argument does not deal with the other, equally important parts of Jesus’s pronouncement. Jesus gives three separate blessings to Peter and Peter alone which cannot be interpreted in any way but as an explicit investment of authority:

          You (Peter) are “Rock,” and on this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
          I will give you (Peter) the keys of the kingdom of heaven [mirroring “the gates of hell”].
          Whatever you (Peter) bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven [linked implicitly to the “keys”].

          The fact that each is clearly directed to Peter negates the argument of some that the “rock” of the statement was only Peter’s faith or his confession.

          Isaiah 22:20–22, the passage which Jesus was clearly referencing in His speech to Peter, as acknowledged even by Protestant exegetes (cf. ESV Study Bible): [To Shebna, steward of the royal palace:] “In that day I will call my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and I will clothe him with your robe, and will bind your sash on him, and will commit your authority to his hand. And he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the house of Judah. And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David. He shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.”

          This passage describes a stripping of authority from one to whom it had been entrusted and an investment of that authority in someone new. In the context of the passage in Matthew and its application to Peter, the authority of binding and loosing with divine approval (“opening” and “shutting” the gates of the kingdom of heaven, with the key), which had been entrusted to the Pharisees and the Sanhedrin, was now being removed and entrusted to Peter and the Apostles in Christ’s new order. Peter is installed as steward over the house of Judah, to exercise order over the household [the Church] in the absence of the king [Christ]. Christ certainly foreshadowed this stewardship in His parables about wise and foolish stewards or servants and their care for the affairs of the house while their master is away (Luke 12:35–48, Matthew 24:45–51). Given this understanding, the kissing of a ring — a very ancient sign of respect and acknowledgement of authority, not of worship — begins to make a bit more sense.

          John 20:21–23, Jesus appearing to the Apostles after His Resurrection: Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.
          Just as the Father sent [Jesus], Jesus sends the Apostles in continuation of His ministry and authority, “to make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:18–20). Just as Jesus has the authority to forgive sins (Mark 2:10–12) — an authority with a clear association to physical healing, cf. James 5:13–16) — He imparts that authority to the Apostles — an authority with an implicit connection to that of “binding and loosing,” but rightly exceeding any authority before claimed by any other rabbi.

          Evidently, we Catholics interpret Scripture more literally and realistically than you, and accept it more readily for what it actually says. I don’t think that leaves you much ground to stand on from which to accuse the Catholic Church of “unbiblical practices.”

        • Joseph Richardson 2:34 pm on 2013-03-22 Permalink | Reply

          P.S. Regarding “requirements” for being a bishop: I don’t think the passage supports your interpretation; neither do most knowledgeable Protestant exegetes; neither has any Catholic exegete over the entire history of Christianity. To cite the well-respected ESV Study Bible, which has quite a bit of commentary on this matter (as it happens, the editor of the notes for 1 and 2 Timothy is Ryan Van Neste):

          The meaning of husband of one wife (Gk. mias gynaikos andra) is widely debated. The Greek phrase is not common, and there are few other instances for comparison. The phrase literally states, “of one woman [wife] man [husband].” (1) Many commentators understand the phrase to mean “having the character of a one-woman man,” that is, “faithful to his wife.” In support of this view is the fact that a similar phrase is used in 1 Tim. 5:9 as a qualification for widows (Gk. henos andros gynē; “one-man woman,” i.e., “wife of one husband”), and in that verse it seems to refer to the trait of faithfulness, for a prohibition of remarriage after the death of a spouse would be in contradiction to Paul’s advice to young widows in 5:14. Interpreters who hold this first view conclude that the wording of 3:2 is too specific to be simply a requirement of marriage and not specific enough to be simply a reference to divorce or remarriage after divorce. In the context of this passage, the phrase therefore prohibits any kind of marital unfaithfulness. (2) Another view is that “husband of one wife” means polygamists cannot be elders. Interpreters who hold this view note that there is evidence of polygamy being practiced in some Jewish circles at the time. On this view, the phrase means “at the present time the husband of one wife,” in line with other qualifications which refer to present character. On either of these views, Paul is not prohibiting all second marriages; that is, he is not prohibiting from the eldership a man whose wife has died and who has remarried, or a man who has been divorced and who has remarried (these cases should be evaluated on an individual basis). (3) A third view is that Paul is absolutely requiring that an elder be someone who has never had more than one wife. But that does not fit the context as well, with its emphasis on present character. On any of these views, Paul is speaking of the ordinary cases and is not absolutely requiring marriage or children (cf. v. 4) but is giving a picture of the typical approved overseer as a faithful husband and father.

        • Joseph Richardson 2:45 pm on 2013-03-22 Permalink | Reply

          Also FWIW: Peter was married, you know (Matthew 8:14), as were most of the Apostles (1 Corinthians 9:5), and as were many bishops around the Christian world for much of the first two or three Christian centuries. Clerical celibacy is a discipline of the Church, not a doctrine, and could be revoked. But it too is well rooted in Scripture (cf. the Old Testament precepts that priests abstain from sexual union before their temple service, and St. Paul’s recommendation of the celibate life in 1 Corinthians 7, for example). There are many married priests in the eastern rites of the Church, where celibacy is not the norm, and even in the West there are many married priests who have converted from, say, Anglicanism, for whom the Church makes dispensations for their married state.

        • Joseph Richardson 2:47 pm on 2013-03-22 Permalink | Reply

          My point being that even if marriage were a requirement for bishops, that would not be relevant to the question of whether or not Peter and the Apostles received authority over the Church.

  • John T. Polk II 9:45 am on 2013-03-12 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , pope, , ,   

    “Has the church of Christ Lost Its Head?” (a power point presentation) 

    http://doverchurchofchrist.info/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/HasTheChurchOfChristLostItshead.swf

     
  • Eugene Adkins 8:27 am on 2013-03-02 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Immaculate Conception, , , Original Sin, pope   

    Just a few questions for my Catholic friends… 

    Been thinking here lately (I’m really opening myself up to zingers there!) about the catholic church situation and what the catholic church itself teaches about the pope and even Mary.

    So the pope’s word is supposed to be infallible, right? When does it become so? Was his word as a “cardinal” infallible? And since he’s still alive does his word continue to be infallible? If not, how does one go from being fallible to infallible and back to fallible again? Talk about a rollercoaster ride! And also, is Benedict still the most-holy or is he only normal-holy? Or is he even Benedict anymore?

    Now when it comes to Mary and her conception being “immaculate” from “original sin” how did she come to be that way? Jesus was born in the flesh according to her genetic material, right? Were her mother and father immaculate as well? How about her grandparents? And her great-parents and their great-grandparents? When did this whole “immaculate” thing start in the gene pool? Why didn’t the siblings of Jesus get the same benefits of their mother’s “immaculate” condition? Scratch that last question – seems like I remember something about sex between a husband and a wife not being allowed and no other children being born. But the other questions still stand.

    Thanks.

    And by the way, if you do give an answer in the affirmative, please give a scripture reference that affirms your affirmation along with it 🙂 That would be most helpful.

     
    • Eugene Adkins 11:31 am on 2013-03-02 Permalink | Reply

      One Catholic did respond in a respectful way, but unfortunately he used scripture by adding the Catholic church’s word to the word of God. Here’s a quick run down.

      As to the questions about the “pope” he quoted Mathew 16:18-19 and inserted the word popes. He quoted John 21:15-17 and again inserted the word pope and supreme pastor. He then quoted Luke 22:31-32 and inserted the words head apostle and head of the church concerning Peter and did indeed refer to the pope as infallible.

      As to the questions about Mary he quoted Luke 1:28 and said highly favored (finding grace) means “full of grace.” There’s a salvation’s span of difference between needing grace (which Mary did indeed need – Luke 1:47) and being made to not need it and thus becoming the only unique person to have ever lived who didn’t need a Savior from sin. Being born of a virgin was a sign to God’s people that the Savior had been born, not that the woman who had borne the Savior was sinless.

      Here is a direct quote from his reply about Mary and his reference to Luke 1: “Because the Archangel Gabriel addressed in this way in this salutation, it gives the “proper name” to Mary as being “Favored One” or “Full of Grace.” This, therefore, must express a unique quality of Mary alone. God favored her / filled her with Grace because of her unique election as the Mother of God. She was prepared by God from the beginning for this role. She is unique in all of the universe…The blessing of God which rests upon Mary is made parallel to the blessing of God which reest upon Christ in His humanity (in her very womb). This parallelism suggests that Mary, just like Christ, was from the beginning of her existence, free from all sin.

      For these simple errors alone I didn’t approve the comment because if one is bold enough to add so plainly to God’s plain word they will not be willing to listen to God’s word if a conversation were had.

      For a further explanation and proof according to the scriptures of how Peter was in no way above the other apostles or that he was even the “pope” check out John T Polk Jr.’s post(s):

      Was Peter the First “Pope?” Here’s the link – http://fellowshiproom.org/2013/02/12/was-peter-the-first-pope/

      and

      Where Was “Vatican Smoke” In The New Testament Church? Here’s the link – http://fellowshiproom.org/2013/02/12/please-read-acts-151-31-then-read-the-following/

    • Sandra Moore 12:40 pm on 2013-03-02 Permalink | Reply

      I found this to be interesting. It is from a article in The Huntsville Times on Friday, Feb 15. The questions were asked and answered by “the Explainer,” and I’m not sure who or what that is.

      “Q: Will he still be infallible?
      A: No…and in fact, he’s never been infallible. In accordance with the First Vatican Council of 1870, the pope is infallible only when he makes an ex cathedra statement– that is, a statement concerning “a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole church.”

      Most popes never make ex cathedra statements during their papacy; only one infallible statement (regarding the Assumption of Mary) has been made since the first Vatican Council of 1870. Pope John XXIII was quoted as saying, “I am only infallible if I speak infallibly but I shall never do that, so I am not infallible.” Pope Benedict XVI has never spoken ex cathedra, and he will lose the ability to do so once he resigns from the papacy.”

      Seems to me that John XXIII was making sure he never got into trouble by trying to be infallible. 😉

      • Joseph Richardson 3:47 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        HI. Thanks for this quote. I’m from the Huntsville area (Decatur, actually).

        Pope John was right. Few popes have ever spoken, nor ever had the need to speak, ex cathedra. The only time the need at arises is when some aspect of Christian faith or morals has to be defined dogmatically; and the only time that is needed is when some aspect of the faith is challenged. For example, in the first centuries of the Church, the doctrine of the Trinity was only defined, progressively, to refute the challenges of heretics who taught something in opposition to the truth. A heretical sect would teach, for example, that Jesus wasn’t truly God, and the Church would have to reject that teaching infallibly; then another sect would teach that the Father and the Son were not equal, or that the Holy Spirit wasn’t really God, and the Church would have to reject those teachings. By successive hammering out, the Christian faith arrived at the Trinitarian and Christological (having to do with Who and What Jesus is) doctrines that all Chrisians hold today. Every pope hopes that he never has to face the kind of challenges that would require an infallible pronouncement to resolve.

    • Joseph Richardson 10:51 am on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      Hi again. I appreciate that you are interested in asking questions and having a respectful dialogue. It doesn’t look like you’ve gotten any adequate answers here. I do hope you will consider me your “Catholic friend” and, I do hope, “brother.” I look forward to your response to my other comments on the authority of the papacy.

      I’ll try to reply here in brief, and then we can expand if you wish.

      Your question about infallibility again reflects some misunderstandings. I think you are misunderstanding the ways in which the Catholic Church sometimes uses the word .holy. For the sake of discussion, let’s define that word. From TheFreeDictionary.com:

      ho·ly [ˈhəʊlɪ]
      adj. ho·li·er, ho·li·est
      1. Belonging to, derived from, or associated with a divine power; sacred.
      2. Regarded with or worthy of worship or veneration; revered: a holy book.
      3. Living according to a strict or highly moral religious or spiritual system; saintly: a holy person.
      4. Specified or set apart for a religious purpose: a holy place.
      5. Solemnly undertaken; sacrosanct: a holy pledge.
      6. Regarded as deserving special respect or reverence: The pursuit of peace is our holiest quest.
      7. Informal Used as an intensive: raised holy hell over the mischief their children did.

      When we call the pope the “Holy Father,” that is an aspect of his office — that office is (1) “belonging to, derived from, or associated with a divine power,” the Church, and his office is (4) “specified or set apart for a religious purpose”; that office is (5) “solemnly undertaken,” and because of that office, he is (6) “regarded as deserving special respect or reverence.” The pope, as a man, may or may not be holy as in (3), “living [a holy life],” being “a holy person.” Certainly there have been popes who were not!

      To say that God is holy is an entirely different sense of the word. God alone is infinitely holy and (2) “worthy of worship”; He is also, by his nature, (1) “a divine power” and “sacred.” The saints (sanctus, holy, set apart), on the other hand, are holy first and foremost because they (3) lived holy lives, and we believe that after their deaths they’ve gone to Heaven and are with Jesus and are thus (1) associated with a divine power. They are (2) deserving of veneration, not akin to worship but more akin to (6), a special respect or reverence.

      Well, so much or brevity I guess. 😉

      Now, to your question about infallibility: Again, you are misunderstanding the Church’s claims. Infallibility is an aspect of the office of the papacy, not of the person of the pope. There was nothing “infallible” about Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger before he was pope, or about him now that he is no longer pope. And this is why I got into that about holiness: you ask how holy he is: well, he’s only as holy as the life he lives. Having read his writings and followed his life for the past eight years, I think he’s a pretty holy guy — but there’s nothing divine about him as a person, and never was. Further, there is nothing infallible about the person of Pope Francis, or the former Cardinal Jose Bergoglio.

      With regard to infallibility: the best way to think about it’s not so much about the pope being infallible, but that when he sits in the captain’s chair, it’s really God steering the boat. Literally, that’s pretty much exactly what the Church teaches: by the formal definition of the doctrine, the pope is only said to be infallible when he speaks ex cathedra (“from the chair” of the episcopate) regarding matters of faith and morals (and “the chair” is not a literal chair). Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would guide the Church into all truth (John 16:13), and it’s only as an aspect of that that the pope is ever considered infallible. And his infallibility only “kicks in” when he invokes it; and it is only formally invoked in very limited circumstances. The pope in his day-to-day life isn’t infallible when he declares his favorite pizza or gives his opinion about football (soccer, you know), or even when he writes encyclicals about Church practice or discipline (which are not considered ex cathedra, but, by analogy, written standing up). He is considered to have authority when he writes such, just as a prominent pastor or scholar is considered to have authority when he speaks, by nature of who he is and what he knows. But papal infallibility has only really been invoked twice in the past couple of centuries. And ex cathedra pronouncements are only ever made in union and agreement with the cardinals and bishops of the Church.

      It all boils down to this: Papal infallibility is an assurance that the Holy Spirit, not the pope, is guiding the Church, when push comes to shove. That is not to say that the pope is the Holy Spirit, or always follows the Holy Spirit, or even necessarily lives in accord with the Holy Spirit — certainly there have been popes who have not. But even in the darkest times of the Church, corrupt popes have never promulgated dogma that is contradictory to the teachings of Christ or the Bible or the Church: they have never declared, say, that the pope is divine, or that Mary is divine, or that Jesus is anything but divine. They have never declared that usury or theft or murder is okay, or that everybody has to give all their money to the Church. The fact that even the most dastardly people who have held the office of pope, regardless of how they lived their personal lives, have never promulgated such heresy or error should be a confirmation of the truth of this doctrine. Infallibility — the guidance of the Holy Spirit — ensures that the Church will never run off the rails. And the fact that in 2,000 years it hasn’t is a sign of the Church’s Oneness, Holiness, Apostolicity, and Catholicity. You and I disagree about interpretations of Scripture — you may even disagree that the Church has never “run off the rails.” But in the 2,000 years of the recorded history of the Catholic Church, the Church has never promulgated any doctrine in opposition or contradiction to its own doctrines, or contradictory to the truth of Scripture. You would be hard pressed to prove that it has.

      As an extension to the doctrine of infallibility: the Magisterium of the Church (Magisterium means “teachership” — the teaching authority of the Church) — that is, the collected body of bishops in communion with the pope, the chief bishop — is considered infallible in its agreement. This means that the ecumenical councils of the Church, from Nicaea to Vatican II, have taught infallible doctrine.

      There you have an explanation of the Church’s teachings on infallibility. I will let you chew that up before I continue with the Marian doctrines.

      • Joseph Richardson 10:55 am on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Correction: Benedict XVI is still pope (he’ll always be our “papa,” just as popes who have passed on from this life are still “papas” to us), only not the sitting pope. He is pope emeritus. And his teachings and writings will not be infallible.

        • Eugene Adkins 11:11 am on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          Quick and simple, Joseph. One, the church has already been guided into all truth. The church doesn’t need a pope for that. Listen to the word of God and not the word of Rome and you’ll see that. Two, Benedict is not “pope” anymore for if he were there wouldn’t have been a need to find a new one.

          What the catholic church says, and what the catholic church believes/does are two different things. They say the pope is only a man, but then they fall at his feet (and the feet of statue’s of Peter – idolatry) to kiss them and his ring and look to his golden cross. Nothing you say will change what people can see when they look at the actions of the catholic church.

    • Joseph Richardson 11:17 am on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      The Church has been guided into all truth — with 40,000 Protestant denominations who can’t agree on anything? With as many diverse and conflicting interpretations of Scripture?

      “Pope,” as I said before, is an honorific title. You call your grandfather “Gramps” or “Granddaddy” or “Pawpaw.” We call our pastor “Papa.” And even after our pastor retires, he’s still our Papa.

      Also as I said before, what you’re referring to is not “idolatry” (the worship of an inanimate object as a deity) or even “worship” at all, but showing honor to the man and his office, the same way people stand up for the president of the United States or kneel for the queen of England. You may not agree with it, but you’re mistaken if you call it “idolatry.”

      What I hope to change is your perception that what you see is something different from what it is, or something different from what the Church or the Christian faith teaches.

      Now, you asked the questions. Am I wasting my time to reply? Are you even interested in my answers?

      • Eugene Adkins 11:33 am on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        There were people who argued about Jesus’ teachings while He was still alive, Joseph, don’t confuse catholic unity and the spirit of unity with the unity of the Spirit (Ephesians 4:3). People can be universal in their agreement and still be universally wrong. I’m not a protestant – I am a Christian and that’s where you fail to understand me. I don’t care what people say, people of any religious affiliation. I will only listen to God’s word (1 Peter 4:11), which is found in the Bible and not in the catechism’s of Rome. The mother church started in Jerusalem and not in/at Rome. The source of truth is found in God’s word and not in the pope’s.

        The catholic church does not use pope as an “honorary” title – it’s a title of supposed “authority” and if you don’t believe that then you have a lot of correcting to do with the followers of catholicism who say otherwise. I don’t think your unity is as universal as you think. As I said before, and as the scriptures teach, the church only has one head, and since one means one and that one head is Jesus I guess that leaves the pope and the catholic church claiming authority where it does not exist; at least not outside of the creeds and councils of men.

        Standing up or kneeling out of respect is not the same as kissing, graveling and worshipping at the feet of religious figures. Cornelius made a mistake with that at Peter’s feet and Peter corrected him. Something the so called “popes” fail to do today. Don’t exchange the golden cross of the pope for the cross of Calvary, Joseph.

        I heard your answers, and your answers were not given with scripture. They were given with the doctrines and commandments of men and these answers will never bring a person closer to God; in fact they will push a person further and further away from Him. No, I don’t believe you’re wasting your time with me, but I do believe you’re wasting your time with the catholic church.

        • Joseph Richardson 1:06 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          Hi, Eugene. Did you know you are named for a series of well-respected popes? Probably not directly, of course — my dad’s middle name is Eugene, named for his great-grandfather, and I don’t think he was named for the popes — but it is nonetheless a good name. Pardon my slowness; I’m now replying from my iPad.

          I appreciate your kind words. That’s an interesting suggestion, that I am “wasting my time” with the Catholic Church. Would you say that all the followers of the Catholic Church over its history have “wasted” their time, and if so, for how long? What about the ones who led holy lives, whom we proclaim as “saints”? Many Protestants respect, say, St. Francis of Assisi, or St. Augustine, or St. Gregory the Great. What about the early ones, like St. Ignatius and St. Irenaeus, who gave their lives for the Christian faith? St. Bernard of Clairvaux was always my favorite when I was a Protestant. He was an ardent proponent of what you would call a personal relationship with Jesus.

          People who disagreed wih Jesus during His ministry on earth stopped following Him (John 6:66, ironically). He Himself prayed that his followers all be one, as He and the Father are One (John 17) (that is, in complete union and agreement, in one mind and one accord [Acts 1:14]). Jesus was, naturally, the authority on what Jesus taught; any disagreement with Him, and folks were no longer Christians. Now you say that the Spirit has guided the Church (I suppose you don’t mean the Catholic Church but the “Church” in a broader sense that includes Protestants into all truth, and that is a difference between universal (catholic) in agreement and being in unity with the Spirit. Are you supposing that Protestant churches have been “in agreement” with the Spirit (the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ)? Why, then, do they not all agree with each other? Why do they have such different understandings of the Christian faith? Wouldn’t “unity in the Spirit” entail “catholic” unity? That’s certainly the sense in which Paul meant those words in the Scripture you cited (Eph 4:3; cf. 1 Cor 1:10), and what Jesus meant at the Last Supper. (For what it’s worth, you sound an awful lot like you are “Protesting” against the Catholic Church; therefore, by definition, you are a Protestant.)

          So you also reject “creeds and councils”? Do you reject, then, the Holy Trinity? Or that Jesus is wholly God and wholly Man? What about the canon of the New Testament? Are you okay, then, with the teachings of the Arians (that Jesus was not truly God), or the Docetists (that Jesus didn’t have a true human body but was only a divine phantom), or Pelagians (that man is not truly tainted by original sin and is capable of rising to divine favor without the grace of God)? All of these were either agreed upon, or rejected, by “councils and creeds.”

          My Bible (ESV, not any weird Catholic translation) at 1 Pet 4:11, that we should love and show hospitality to all those who serve the Church and speak oracles (λόγια, “sayings”) of God. I’m glad we agree on that.

          You seem to like calling things what they are not. The bishop of Rome is not the “Head” of the Church. Let me ask you, does your church have a pastor? Is Scripture wrong when, through the words of St. Peter, it recommends that pastors “shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight [ἐπισκοποῦντες, episkopountes, the same root as ἐπίσκοπος, episkopos, bishop or overseer]” (1 Peter 5:1–2)?

          Holy Mother Church was born in Jerusalem, but, you ought to know, it’s not centered in any one place, but in its people, who are the Body of Christ (1 Cor 12:13,27, Eph 4:4–5). I quote from the Catechism to you to demonstrate what the Catholic Church teaches, about which you are making incorrect statements. The Catechism is an official and authoritative source of Catholic teaching — what the Church teaches about Christian truth. To say that the Church teaches something different than what is defined in the Catechism is self-contradictory. I quote from Scripture, the source of Truth, to demonstrate that what the Church teaches is true. The questions you asked before were about what the Church teaches, not about whether it was true; therefore I quoted from the Catechism. I am doing my best to answer your questions; please let me answer the questions you have asked.

    • Joseph Richardson 6:14 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      Regarding your Marian questions: my answers will be brief and simple enough. If you care for a lengthier explanation, I can provide it.

      The dogma of Mary’s Immaculate Conception teaches that by the prevenient (“coming-before”) grace of the Holy Spirit, Mary was spared from the stain of original sin. By that gratuitous grace, because of the love God has for the human race and for His Son, Mary received the same graces that we receive at our Baptism. She, just as human as you or me, and just as much in need of salvation as you or me (cf. Luke 1:47), was “saved” from the moment of her conception. Though the dogma was not formally defined until 1854 — see my comments above about dogma not needing to be defined until they were challenged — the Church has held this belief in more-or-less these terms since the days of the Apostles, and her understanding of it developed over the ages through extensive study of the Scriptures.

      So, no, neither her parents nor grandparents nor anyone else in her family was “immaculate.” And as you should know, sin is a spiritual state, not a physical one, and original sin is not inherited genetically, and has nothing to do with any “gene pool.”

      This was one of the dogmata that I had a harder time with — so I do not expect to get anywhere in arguing with it with you; I only wanted to answer your question about the teachings of the Church.

      And yes, you are correct that the Church believes and teaches that Mary remained a virgin all her life and never bore any more children. This has nothing to do with “sex between a husband and wife not being allowed” — but as the spotless vessel that bore God Himself into the world, she could not conceivably have borne any more. And this is very well supported by Scripture. Aside from the few ambiguous references to Jesus’s “brothers,” you will not find any more explicit statement that these children belonged to Mary. If you care, I can make the case to you.

      You might be surprised to learn that both Martin Luther and John Calvin, as well as nearly all of the early Protestant Reformers, held these doctrines without question.

      • Eugene Adkins 7:40 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Joseph, to put it kindly, yet plainly still, all of your answers to questions like this, like all other catholics, are given by/through the word of “dogma’s and catechisms” and sorely lack the proper dividing of the scriptures (2 Timothy 2:15), and that’s even if any scriptures are given at all, which your reply shows to be true. If you will go back and read the original post you will see that I did not ask for the word of the catholic church to be used – I asked for the word of God to be used; and these two things are completely different.

        With your very answer you have failed miserably to show any respect towards marriage and Joseph’s marital rights as a husband, and you have concluded that sex defiles a married person which it does not (Hebrews 13:4). The longer you talk, the farther and farther you get away from the Bible and the closer and closer you get to the words of the catholic church’s “holy father(s)” instead of getting closer to God, the only Holy Father. Everything you just spouted out about Mary cannot be taught with the Bible, hence the catholic church needs to go by the fabricated “oral tradition” because there is no written tradition to defend it with. The only case you have to make is with the words of the largest man-made church ever created and not with the word of God.

        The catholic church promotes and propagates the idolatry of Mary in ways that are clearly blasphemous to spiritual eyes which have been enlightened by the Holy Spirit with the word of God and not darkened, confused and blinded with the words of men.

        “As she suffered and almost died together with her suffering and dying Son, so she surrendered her mother’s rights over her Son for the salvation of the human race. And to satisfy the justice of God she sacrificed her Son, as well as she could, so that it may justly be said that she together with Christ has redeemed the human race.” (Pope Benedict XV (INTER SODALICIA)

        This is complete and utterly gross blasphemy! It can never be justly said that Mary redeemed mankind in any way, shape, form or fashion! Jesus alone is the redeemer of mankind, Jesus alone is the Mediator of mankind, Jesus alone is the Head of His church and Jesus alone is the Chief Shepherd.

        For these reasons alone are why catholics and the catholic church condemns people who use only the Bible to learn about, come to and have a proper relationship with God. This is because the catholic church knows their traditions are contrary to the Bible’s and that’s why for hundreds of years the catholic church fought so hard to keep God’s word out of the hands of the “common” man because they prefer sheep who have had the wool pulled over their eyes instead of seeing the light of the glorious gospel. And if you disagree then you need to spend time going around and telling other catholics on Word Press that using the Bible alone (sola scripture) is a completely acceptable way to come to God because there are many out there who teach otherwise.

        There are many things in your replies directed toward me and directed toward the truth of God that I could correct with numerous scriptures, but if you’re not willing to the see the plain blasphemy of idol worship that runs rampant in the catholic church, then for now it would be fruitless to go into other areas of your error.

        • Joseph Richardson 7:43 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          I figured this comment would get your dander up. 😉 I would still like you to reply to my earlier post on the authority of the papacy, very well and plainly supported by Scripture, and to my other comment regarding holiness and infallibility.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:45 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            So you choose to ignore the plain idolatrous quote about Mary? Figured you would. I have failed to have any catholic try to defend that one…among many, many other quotes given by the pope(s) that show how the catholic church worships Mary.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:49 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            And if you’ll pay attention to my first reply to the catholic who actually tried to use scripture (but failed by inserting words like “pope”) you’ll find links to articles here in The Fellowship Room that uses an abundance of scripture to show plainly and beyond a shadow of a doubt that what the catholic church teaches about the pope cannot be defended with the Bible…in fact the Bible defeats it.

        • Joseph Richardson 7:49 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          I don’t ignore it, but it makes little sense to argue with it at this point. I don’t consider the Church’s Marian beliefs “idolatrous” or “blasphemous” in any way, but I don’t expect you to understand that. You and I would be much more productive, I think, in discussing the things we are closer to agreement on. I am especially interested in your thoughts on the biblical case for apostolic authority.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:53 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            Apostolic authority was only given to the apostles. To be an apostle one had to see the resurrected Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:8). Nothing more needs to be said about that.

        • Joseph Richardson 7:51 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          So, then, please reply to my biblical argument I made to your other post, if the Bible so well defeats it.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:55 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            I have already said once, Joseph, that there are articles here in The Fellowship Room that defeat the catholic church’s teaching about the pope. I won’t reteach what’s already been taught.

            And I am still “tickled” at how you won’t even try to defend the blasphemous words of your pope.

        • Joseph Richardson 7:56 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          I asked you to reply to my post, sir. I spent several hours in constructing that argument for you, and your reluctance to address it leads me to believe that you have no answer to the plain truth of Scripture.

      • tiffanystttt 10:39 am on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

        I am clearly quite late in reading all these comments, but please let me, at this late hour, add some detail to this Marian issue.

        1. There is no evidence anywhere in the Bible for praying to or through anyone other than God the Father. Jesus continued this example for us in the Scripture known as the Lord’s Prayer. To pray to anyone other than God is idolatrous. Yet every Catholic who possesses a rosary begins their prayers with ‘Hail, Mary, Mother of God.’ This is entirely unscriptural and thus not Christian behaviour.

        2. I have met Catholics in many countries who proudly tell me they worship Mary. Again, no human can be worshiped, no human can be leader of a true Christian faith. Only GOD is the Creator, the ultimate power in the world; and only Jesus is our leader, who has given all the rules/ examples we need in this day and age through the letters and gospels provided in the New Testament. No one can worship Mary and still pretend to be a Christian (e.g., one who follows Jesus Christ).

        3. The entire belief of Original Sin was the root cause why the Catholic leaders had to come up with the idea that Mary was somehow special; otherwise, baby Jesus would have been born in sin. Both teachings, e.g., Original Sin and the ‘Immaculate’ nature of Mary are never supported in the 27 books of the New Testament. Thus, they are not to be followed by Christians.

        4. Catholics may want to skate over the verses that clearly state that Jesus had at least one ‘brother’. Again, this ignores clearly stated and worded scripture; to accept the scripture would be to run contrary to point 3, e.g., that Mary being ‘immaculate’ would mean all other children were also sinless. Again, Catholics deviate from Scripture and thus Christian teaching.

        5. To believe that Mary was a virgin her entire life is also never supported in scripture. It is clear she took a husband, Joseph, and that sex is part of God’s marriage plan. And contrary to Catholic tradition, sex is not sinful except when trying to make a baby. The very colourful language of Song of Solomon clearly outlines the pleasure in the bonding that takes place between a man and woman when performing sexual intercourse. To preach of sex as sin, or to abstain from sex except for when trying to conceive; or even to demand someone take a vow to abstain from sex to show their devotion to God is not supported by Scripture and thus is contrary to Christian teaching.

        My discussions with atheists, Catholics, CofEngland and Jehovah’s Witnesses tend to collapse when I insist that the only source for a Christian’s faith can be found within the 27 books of the New Testament, supported by the 39 books of the Old Testament to understand who God is (Creator, etc.) and what He has done for His people. I pray that I can prick a conscience or two, to spread the seed in men’s hearts that God can give the increase.

        • Joseph Richardson 3:33 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

          Thanks for the respectful comment, Tiffany. I would agree that discussions tend to collapse between members of the Protestants and Catholics when the Protestant insists on what you say, that Scripture can be the only source for a Christian’s faith (an extreme form of what the Protestant Reformers called “sola scriptura,” one that goes far beyond what even they intended). Having been a Protestant most of my life, I can certainly understand the position — but applied as rigidly as Fundamentalists want to apply it, I don’t think it is a reasonable proposition. I agree completely (and the Catholic Church agrees) that Scripture is the only absolute, inerrant source, the very written Word of God. But it makes little sense to simply ignore and discard the valuable knowledge that the history and tradition of the Church — especially the writings of the earliest Christians, who knew and were taught by the Apostles — can teach us. It is important to remember that Scripture nowhere teaches us to do this: nowhere does Scripture dictate that it is to be the only source of faith or doctrine, or that others should be discarded. On the contrary, we are instructed to “hold fast to the teachings [the Apostles] taught [us], whether by word of mouth or by letter” (2 Thessalonians 2:15).

          1. To “pray to” another person in the sense that traditional Christians understand the term is simply to ask or beseech them: we are asking others to pray for us, which, according to my Bible, is not only permissible but encouraged. “Idolatry” is to worship another thing as a god that is not a god — and there is none of that at all in asking for another’s prayers.

          “Hail Mary, full of grace / Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb” (Latin Ave, Maria, etc.) is in fact a direct quote from Scripture (Luke 1:28,42). “Mother of God” is a paraphrase from Scripture: Elizabeth calls Mary the “Mother of my LORD” (v. 43). In any case, the fact that any particular prayer is not found in Scripture is irrelevant: if this were a requirement for “Christian behavior,” then every kind of extemporaneous prayer would be excluded.

          I have met Catholics in many countries who proudly tell me they worship Mary.

          2. I cannot speak for them, but only for every Catholic I have ever known, and every official teaching of the Catholic Church I have ever read: Catholics do not “worship” Mary. Pointing to “many Catholics” whom you can neither name nor produce is the stuff of straw men.

          The entire belief of Original Sin was the root cause why the Catholic leaders had to come up with the idea that Mary was somehow special; otherwise, baby Jesus would have been born in sin. Both teachings, e.g., Original Sin and the ‘Immaculate’ nature of Mary are never supported in the 27 books of the New Testament. Thus, they are not to be followed by Christians.

          3. In fact, the belief that Mary never committed sin predates the Church’s understanding of original sin (which is quite scriptural, understood especially from Romans 5:12-21, Ephesians 2:1-3, Psalm 51:5, Genesis 8:21, etc.). Christians as early as the very earliest Christian documents following the New Testament (late first century) demonstrate a convinced belief in both Mary’s all-holiness and her perpetual virginity. This is not something that “Catholic leaders” invented, but that Christians have believed since the beginning. To return your argument: there is nothing in Scripture to support that Mary did sin, and more than a little to suggest that she was extraordinarily holy and blessed. It is in fact only a small minority of Christians who do not believe this.

          Catholics may want to skate over the verses that clearly state that Jesus had at least one ‘brother’.

          4. In fact, references to Jesus’s “brothers” do not at all “clearly state” that any one of them was Mary’s child. If she had other children, then Jesus would have slighted them in asking John to take her into his home (John 19:25-27).

          To believe that Mary was a virgin her entire life is also never supported in scripture.

          Neither is it indicated anywhere in Scripture that she wasn’t.

          To preach of sex as sin, or to abstain from sex except for when trying to conceive; or even to demand someone take a vow to abstain from sex to show their devotion to God is not supported by Scripture and thus is contrary to Christian teaching.

          5. The Catholic Church does not “preach of sex as sin”: in fact, Catholics are far more open in praising both the beauty and the holiness of the marital state and act than any Protestant sect I have ever known. Pope John Paul II presented a whole, developed Theology of the Body expounding on the idea that the marital union is an image of the intimate love of God exchanged between the Persons of the Trinity. So no, your criticism misses the mark.

          On the other hand, Scripture does in fact praise the state of celibacy, Paul even calling it a “special gift from God” (1 Corinthians 7:7-8).

          God bless you, and His peace be with you!

          • Eugene Adkins 7:09 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

            “Christians as early as the very earliest Christian documents following the New Testament (late first century) demonstrate a convinced belief in both Mary’s all-holiness and her perpetual virginity.”

            Do you know why documents following the New Testament say that? Because the New Testament does not. People who sin need a savior – Mary needed a savior (“My spirit is glad in God my Saviour.” Luke 1:47) – therefore, according to the scriptures, Mary committed sin like any other adult, save Jesus Christ, who has ever lived (Romans 3:23).

            “Neither is it indicated anywhere in Scripture that she wasn’t.”

            The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to eat more than the bread and the fruit of the vine while observing the Lord’s Supper, therefore it must not be wrong to add to the meal, right? The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to get baptized every year, therefore it must not be wrong to teach or do so, right? The scriptures don’t say Mary fasted for two years without any food or drink, therefore this was something that she possibly did, right? The scriptures don’t say a man named Joseph Smith wouldn’t come along and claim to have received another testament of Jesus Christ, therefore the possibility of such is possible, right? After all, the scriptures don’t say anything to contrary of any of these things.

            Such a list of questions shows the fallacy of depending upon the “but the Bible doesn’t say this or that” when it comes to wholesome doctrine so there must not be anything wrong with it – such as the idea that God has ever told us to pray through anyone other than Jesus; one mediator it what the scriptures teach, therefore there is no need, nor desire of God, for anyone to mediate between God and mankind be it either mediator or mediatrix (1 Timothy 2:5).

        • Joseph Richardson 7:39 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

          Hi, Eugene.

          Do you know why documents following the New Testament say that? Because the New Testament does not. People who sin need a savior – Mary needed a savior (“My spirit is glad in God my Saviour.” Luke 1:47) – therefore, according to the scriptures, Mary committed sin like any other adult, save Jesus Christ, who has ever lived (Romans 3:23).

          Eugene, your logic here is sketchy on two different counts. First, “If a person sins, then he needs a savior” does not entail “If a person has a savior, then he sins.” This is a formal logical fallacy known as “affirming the consequent.” You can look it up if you’re interested. Second, “Early Christian documents say this because the New Testament does not” simply doesn’t follow at all. Why would early Christian documents — the writings of the very people who were taught by the Apostles, who affirmed faith in the Lord and who held the New Testament as the Word of God — hold and write something that they believed contradicted the Word of God? Where would such a doctrine come from, if not from their own teachers?

          In fact the Scriptures do contradict the contrary cases you have named:

          The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to eat more than the bread and the fruit of the vine while observing the Lord’s Supper, therefore it must not be wrong to add to the meal, right?

          The Scriptures give us a very clear and closed formula for the Lord’s Supper.

          The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to get baptized every year, therefore it must not be wrong to teach or do so, right?

          The Scriptures affirm that there is “one baptism” (Ephesians 4:5).

          The scriptures don’t say a man named Joseph Smith wouldn’t come along and claim to have received another testament of Jesus Christ, therefore the possibility of such is possible, right? After all, the scriptures don’t say anything to contrary of any of these things.

          Scripture teaches that Jesus is the ultimate revelation of the Word of God, and all that awaits now is His final appearing (1 Timothy 6:14; Titus 2:13).

          The scriptures don’t say Mary fasted for two years without any food or drink, therefore this was something that she possibly did, right?

          And yet there is no story, report, or tradition reporting such, and so no one has ever entertained such a thought. The difference between this and the beliefs you insist on opposing is that these are traditions which have been reported from the very earliest days of the Church.

          Such a list of questions shows the fallacy of depending upon the “but the Bible doesn’t say this or that” when it comes to wholesome doctrine so there must not be anything wrong with it – such as the idea that God has ever told us to pray through anyone other than Jesus; one mediator it what the scriptures teach, therefore there is no need, nor desire of God, for anyone to mediate between God and mankind be it either mediator or mediatrix (1 Timothy 2:5).

          Which is it, then? “The Bible doesn’t say,” or a contradiction of Scripture? It cannot be both. But Scripture in fact does instruct us to pray for all people, to ask others to pray for us — that is, to pray through them. Do you then reject intercessory prayer?

          God bless you, and His peace be with you.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:49 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

            It sure is funny how the Bible saying there’s one baptism means that there’s no authority to baptize someone each year, but when the Bible says there’s one mediator then the Bible isn’t saying that it’s wrong to pray through others as a mediator or a mediatrix. The Bible only settles an issue for a Catholic when the Catholic oral teachings also teach such, but when the scriptures don’t align with the Catholic Church’s oral teachings then it must the Bible that fits the oral teachings and not the other way around. One means one my friend for baptisms and mediators/mediatrixs.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:52 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

            And what did Mary need saving from if it were not her sins? The Bible doesn’t say that “all have sinned (except Mary) and fallen short of God’s glory (except Mary)” (Romans 3:23).

            • Joseph Richardson 12:45 pm on 2015-08-20 Permalink

              Mary answers that question in the very next phrase: From her “lowly estate.”

              The verse in Romans also does not mention Jesus as an exception to “all having sinned,” but nonetheless He is.

            • Eugene Adkins 1:14 pm on 2015-08-20 Permalink

              Actually, the very next verses (Romans 3:24-25) give the only exception of sin’s guilty partakers to Jesus since redemption, remission and propitiation are only found in Jesus’ blood – hence, the only blood not guilty of sin.

          • Eugene Adkins 7:57 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

            “But Scripture in fact does instruct us to pray for all people, to ask others to pray for us — that is, to pray through them.”

            And how in the world, my friend, do you get that the scriptures teach us to pray through people when it simply tells us to pray for each other? For and through are two completely different things. I think your “affirming the consequent” applies here for you are doing the very thing that you have accused me of.

        • Joseph Richardson 8:02 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

          And how in the world, my friend, do you get that the scriptures teach us to pray through people when it simply tells us to pray each other?

          One is a necessary product of the other. If you are praying for someone, you are becoming their agent or intercessor (hence, “intercessory prayer”) — i.e. they are praying through you.

          • Eugene Adkins 8:03 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink | Reply

            No, they are not praying – you are praying…these are two different things.

            • Joseph Richardson 8:09 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Yes, you’re exactly right. 😀 When we ask someone to pray, to intercede, for us, they are praying for us; we are no longer the ones praying. Just so with the intercession of our brothers and sisters in heaven.

            • Eugene Adkins 8:11 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              And where do you get the idea that you can ask a dead person to pray for you? Just use the same scriptural logic about mediators that you used with baptism and you’ll finally start to get somewhere.

            • Joseph Richardson 8:13 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              … Just where do you get the idea that are brothers and sisters in the Lord are “dead”? If we truly believe in the Resurrection, then they are more alive than they’ve ever been before (Hebrews 12:23).

            • Eugene Adkins 8:17 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Being alive has nothing to do with our ability to communicate with them or them for us (Luke 16:26). So again, praying for someone is not the same thing as praying through someone. It’s an unscriptural theme cooked up to defend the oral traditions of the Catholic Church that have no basis in the scriptures…which really does get back to the point of my original post.

            • Joseph Richardson 8:25 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Luke 16:19-31 presents a “chasm” so wide that the rich man is having a conversation with Abraham across it. That’s not really very good for your argument. 😀

            • Eugene Adkins 8:26 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Abraham represents God/paradise/rest, and if you read the whole thing you’ll see that the rich man is told that his brothers must hear the word of God because his suggestion wouldn’t be considered. Keep reading my friend 😉

            • Joseph Richardson 8:28 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Far be it from a Catholic to read a meaning into Jesus’s own words contrary to what He said. 😉

            • Eugene Adkins 8:29 pm on 2015-08-19 Permalink

              Just remember what the gulf represents and how the lesson ends and the scriptures will help to guide you in the right direction of the difference between praying for and praying through.

        • RichardS 1:56 am on 2015-08-20 Permalink | Reply

          Joseph, it looks to me like you might have proved Tiffany’s point in #4 but she didn’t give any Scripture references. If you think that Jesus didn’t have any brothers what about Matt.12:46-50, Matt.13:55-57, Mark 3:31-35, Luke 8:19-21, John 7:3-5, or Acts 1:14?

        • LaraIngalls 3:41 am on 2015-08-20 Permalink | Reply

          Joseph:
          I would agree that discussions tend to collapse between members of the Protestants and Catholics when the Protestant insists … that Scripture can be the only source for a Christian’s faith (an extreme form of what the Protestant Reformers called “sola scriptura,” one that goes far beyond what even they intended). Having been a Protestant most of my life, I can certainly understand the position — but applied as rigidly as Fundamentalists want to apply it, I don’t think it is a reasonable proposition. … it makes little sense to simply ignore and discard the valuable knowledge that the history and tradition of the Church — especially the writings of the earliest Christians, who knew and were taught by the Apostles — can teach us. It is important to remember that Scripture nowhere teaches us to do this: nowhere does Scripture dictate that it is to be the only source of faith or doctrine, or that others should be discarded. On the contrary, we are instructed to “hold fast to the teachings [the Apostles] taught [us], whether by word of mouth or by letter” (2 Thessalonians 2:15).

          Lara:
          Please understand I am neither Protestant nor Fundamentalist; I am a Christian. I believe in the inspired Word of God as GOD’s sole message, down through the ages as timeless as GOD himself. Anything else is just as the Bible called, and Eugene quoted, a ‘tradition of men’ (Mark 7:5-13; Colossians 2:8-10). A tradition is an add on, as it were, and most certainly at most can be a personal preference – not a dogma to hold over anyone as belief. It makes perfect sense to discard an opinion of another man, whether live or dead, so called ‘saint’, ‘priest’ or ‘layman’, if it is contrary to the teachings in the Holy Bible. To determine this, one must first read and understand the Bible, studying it diligently and prayerfully to really digest it fully and let its words guide our hearts (2 Timothy 2:14-19). We are indeed to hold fast the teachings Jesus and His apostles taught us… everyone else is fallible, thus is not to be held in the same category (Matthew 5:17 – 20; Galatians 1:6-12). There are no more apostles after those fourteen appointed by Jesus.

          Joseph:
          The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to eat more than the bread and the fruit of the vine while observing the Lord’s Supper, therefore it must not be wrong to add to the meal, right? The scriptures don’t say it’s wrong to get baptized every year, therefore it must not be wrong to teach or do so, right? The scriptures don’t say Mary fasted for two years without any food or drink, therefore this was something that she possibly did, right? The scriptures don’t say a man named Joseph Smith wouldn’t come along and claim to have received another testament of Jesus Christ, therefore the possibility of such is possible, right? After all, the scriptures don’t say anything to contrary of any of these things.

          Lara:
          As Eugene pointed out, this is faulty logic at best. Unlike human law, which seems to need a version 9.79 every time a new technology or loophole is revealed, GOD’s law, once enshrined in Scripture, has remained timeless, ageless and as relevant today as it was when first written. It is, as the church of Christ paraphrases, our obligation to speak where Scripture speaks, and be silent where it is silent.

          Let’s pick apart your questions, assuming they are genuine enquiries. The Lord’s Supper is outlined as two ingredients: bread and fruit of the vine (grape juice). This is related in three Gospels (Matthew 26:26-30; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:14-20). It is clear this was done weekly by the first Christians (Acts 20:7). The same phrase, ‘upon the first day of the week’ is used also for collection (1 Corinthians 16:1,2). I have never heard any Catholic, Protestant, ‘high church’ or ‘low church’ that argues that they can’t take money weekly. But somehow, they will argue that the Lord’s Supper was not observed weekly by the first Christians. Both mention weekly (upon the first day of the week), so, without any other evidence within Scripture, then we should also observe these every Sunday (it is the first day of the Julian Calendar) until Jesus returns. The Lord’s Supper’s content is outlined, bread and fruit of the vine; we know since Jesus was meeting His apostles during Passover that the bread on the table was unleavened; hence, we also use unleavened bread. Jesus was indeed having a meal with His apostles when He instilled the Lord’s Supper (see above Gospels). But to add a meal to the Lord’s Supper would entirely be a preference; and if it were to be added, it should in no way detract from the meaning of this Lord’s Supper: “Do this in remembrance of [Jesus].”

          Eugene has already tackled the question regarding baptism.

          As for Mary’s fast, the only Scriptures that reference Mary are: Luke 1:27 – 2:19; Matthew 1,2; Luke 2:34; Matthew 13:55,56; Mark 6:3; John 19:26, 27; Matthew 27:56, 61; Mark 15:40, 47; Matthew 28: 1-8; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:10; Acts 1). These Scriptures tell us all we need to know: Mary was a virgin who was betrothed (engaged) to Joseph when the Holy Spirit impregnated her; Joseph married her, but they did not have sex until after Jesus was born in Bethlehem; Mary and Joseph raised Jesus in Nazareth; Mary and Joseph had other children: James, Joses, Simon, Judas and ‘sisters’ to Jesus; Mary was present at Jesus’ crucifixion, where Jesus, as her firstborn, appealed for His apostle, John, to look after her as a firstborn son would; and she was present on the first day of the week, when the apostles discovered Jesus’ resurrection. Anything else that is taught about Mary is from sources outside Scripture and thus not to be accepted as fact – or basis for belief.

          Joseph Smith, Muhammed, Martin Luther, John Calvin, Pope John Paul II, etc., are all covered in Mark 7:5-13; Colossians 2:8-10; 2 Timothy 2:14-19.

          Let’s take Matthew 5:27, 28 as my example. Jesus very clearly covers lust coming from the heart of man, thus any one who looks upon another lustfully, (for women can do this to men, also) outside of marriage, has committed adultery. There is no need for this to be brought up to date or clarified by synods, edicts, ex cathedra statements, papal bulls, etc. Pornography, whether print or virtual, word or picture or movie, is covered. Sex, whether virtual or actual, is covered. Women coveting men in the same way is covered. All else is just men’s opinion or addition – which does not carry the same weight as Scripture.

          This is the most important discussion, above all others. If we do in fact agree that there is a purpose to life; there is a GOD; that GOD is the one who provided the Holy Bible… then the disagreement begins when I believe the Holy Bible is the sole source of GOD’s law, and you or others believe other sources provide GOD’s law, also. If we cannot agree this one point, all else becomes irrelevant, including the Catholic veneration of Mary. Once we agree on this point, then only can we move forward to discuss what is or is not within Scripture.

          I prayerfully wish to continue in growing my faith and understanding, and hope you also are of this mind.

    • Eugene Adkins 7:59 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      Here, Joseph, take your mouse pointer and click where the words are blue:

      Was Peter the First “Pope?” Here’s the link – http://fellowshiproom.org/2013/02/12/was-peter-the-first-pope/

      and

      Where Was “Vatican Smoke” In The New Testament Church? Here’s the link – http://fellowshiproom.org/2013/02/12/please-read-acts-151-31-then-read-the-following/

      • Joseph Richardson 8:02 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Don’t insult me, sir. I have read the linked posts, and they do not address at all the argument I made in the other post. They do not even reference the Scripture I cited to you. Do not pretend they do. If you have an answer to my argument, please make it; if you don’t, either admit you don’t, or I will assume it.

        • Eugene Adkins 8:05 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          Joseph, you’re being obtuse now. Much like the popes:

          “O Virgin most holy, none abounds in the knowledge of God except through thee; none, O Mother of God, attains salvation except through thee; none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Pope Leo XIII – ADIUTRICEM)

      • Joseph Richardson 8:08 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        You’re the one refusing to defend your own words. If you call me “obtuse” for holding you to them, then I suppose I am. Apparently you have no answer to that or any of the well-meaning questions I asked above, and have no other resort but to hurt baseless accusations and name-calling at me.

    • Joseph Richardson 8:06 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      “As she suffered and almost died together with her suffering and dying Son, so she surrendered her mother’s rights over her Son for the salvation of the human race. And to satisfy the justice of God she sacrificed her Son, as well as she could, so that it may justly be said that she together with Christ has redeemed the human race.” (Pope Benedict XV, Inter Sodalicia)

      I fail to see what’s “blasphemous” about this quote. Mary cooperated with God’s plan of salvation. She said “yes” (Luke 1:38). She allowed herself to be a tool of God’s redemption. She gave up her only son, just as God gave up His only Son, so that mankind could be saved. Do you argue otherwise?

      • Eugene Adkins 8:08 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Yeah, and so does the Bible. First, Jesus wasn’t Mary’s only child. Second, there is no co-redeemer. It’s a shame that Mary’s name gets drug through the spiritual mud by the catholic church.

        • Joseph Richardson 8:10 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          1. Mary cooperated with God’s plan of salvation.
          2. She said “yes” (Luke 1:38).
          3. She allowed herself to be a tool of God’s redemption.
          4. She gave up her only son [we’ll leave that one alone for now, since it’s not relevant to this question], just as God gave up His only Son, so that mankind could be saved.

          Which exactly of these statements does the Bible prove untrue?

          • Eugene Adkins 8:14 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            Jesus’ earthly father Joseph cooperated with God’s plan of salvation. He also said yes. He allowed himself to be a tool of God’s redemption. So I guess Joseph is a co-redeemer of mankind too! I’m only following catholic logic here.

          • Eugene Adkins 8:18 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            When you try to prove too much, you prove too little, Joseph. Everything you said about Mary can be said about Joseph, but for some reason the catholic church doesn’t look at him the same way it looks at Mary. You know, the “Mary” that led the pope to say, “O Virgin most holy, none abounds in the knowledge of God except through thee; none, O Mother of God, attains salvation except through thee; none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Pope Leo XIII – ADIUTRICEM)

      • Eugene Adkins 8:12 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        I’m not refusing to defend “my words.” You’re the one spouting off here on someone else’s blog, Joseph. There’s no point in rehashing what’s already been taught. Those articles that are linked address and undermine every thing you’ve said about the pope. I’m sorry you feel like your time is being wasted, but I’m also sorry that it takes so long to come up with words to defend error.

        • Joseph Richardson 8:31 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          When did I say my time was being wasted? I’m rather enjoying myself. 🙂

          Here, I will make it simple for you. Please answer these questions which I kindly asked above, if you are able. So far you have evaded them:
          1. Would you say that all the followers of the Catholic Church over its history have “wasted” their time, and if so, for how long?
          2. Are you supposing that Protestant churches have been “in unity” with the Spirit (the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ)?
          3. Why, then, do they not all agree with each other?
          4. Why do they have such different understandings of the Christian faith?
          5. Wouldn’t “unity in the Spirit” entail “catholic” unity?
          6. So you also reject “creeds and councils”? Do you reject, then, the Holy Trinity? Or that Jesus is wholly God and wholly Man? What about the canon of the New Testament? (etc.)
          7. Is Scripture wrong when, through the words of St. Peter, it recommends that pastors “shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight (1 Peter 5:1–2)?

          Here, I will summarize my argument of the other post. I would like you to address it, if you can.
          You argued (your own words) that, “Jesus never installed an earthly head, Jesus never asked for an earthly head nor does Jesus need an earthly head. If the catholic church followed/believed the same gospel they would not transfer heavenly authority to an earthly man . . . ”
          I prove the contrary by showing that:
          1. Jesus did entrust His authority to “earthly men” (Matthew 10:1, 5–8)
          2. He sent these men as His representatives. (Matthew 10:40, etc.)
          3. The powers of “binding and loosing” are a clear investment of authority that would be divinely ratified. (Matthew 18:18)
          4. Jesus certainly, and without a doubt, invested this authority to His Apostles and especially to Peter. (ibid., Matthew 16:17–19)
          5. This investment, or stewardship of His “household” the Church, was prophesied by Isaiah and foreshadowed by Christ Himself. (Isaiah 22:20–22)
          6. This authority, by the plain words of Scripture, included the authority to remit or retain sins (John 20:21–23).

          Now, you can see that this is quite clearly a different argument than the ones addressed by the posts you linked to. If you have an answer to it, I would appreciate you giving it (it would be nice to give it over at the other post since the thread here is already pretty muddy. If you can, you may answer the other questions above here.

          Thanks, and I do wish you the peace of Christ.

          • Eugene Adkins 8:34 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            I’ll answer these when you answer whether or not Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus, is a co-redeemer of mankind. Yes or No? And you if you say “No” remember, Joseph, that he meets all the “qualifications” that you mentioned when it comes to Mary. If you’re not willing to be consistent here, when will you be?

    • Joseph Richardson 8:35 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      By the way, in care you’re not aware: Joseph is the most highly regarded saint of the Church, and is held nearly as high as Mary. He is the patron saint of the whole Church. He is also venerated for His role in the plan of salvation, for taking Mary and protecting her and the young Jesus, and not “putting her away” as the Scripture said. Mary, of course, has a slightly more involved role, since it was through her flesh that Christ was born. (And oh, I’m being consistent; you’re just not being patient.)

      • Joseph Richardson 8:37 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Second most highly regarded, meant to say, but the word got lost somewhere. Mary is a saint, too.

      • Eugene Adkins 8:37 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Nearly as high? I don’t think that’s the same height, is it? Please answer the question with a yes or no. Is Joseph a co-redeemer of mankind?

        • Joseph Richardson 8:39 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          Yes, he is, and is often called such.

          • Eugene Adkins 8:41 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            Amazing! I never knew there were co-redeemers (at least 2) of mankind’s salvation. Can you give scripture for that? Which is kind of the whole point I was trying to make if you’ll go back and read the original post, Joseph.

          • Eugene Adkins 8:43 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            So Joseph is co-redeemer, but Mary is still, “O Virgin most holy, none abounds in the knowledge of God except through thee; none, O Mother of God, attains salvation except through thee; none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Pope Leo XIII – ADIUTRICEM) right? Because none, except and none and except would seem to infer that she doesn’t share that with anyone else.

    • Joseph Richardson 8:45 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      No, there is no Scripture that says that either Mary or Joseph are “co-redeemers” or even says the word “co-redeemer.” But there’s also no Scripture that says the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit form the Holy Trinity. There’s no Scripture that says that Jesus Christ is fully-God and fully-man. There’s no Scripture that says what books belong in the New Testament. There’s not even a Scripture that says that you have to base everything you believe on Scripture (in fact, no one did until the time of the Reformation).

      [Forgive my poor placement of this comment. Please reply to this one to keep the tread going downward.]

      • Eugene Adkins 8:50 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        Until you can give scripture for what your pope infallible taught the conversation is over because my point has been proven.

        And I already replied before you did, sorry. Here’s what I said:

        Different topic, Joseph. Those points can be proven with scripture. And now here comes the true feelings/following of a catholic – “There’s not even a Scripture that says that you have to base everything you believe on Scripture”

        Remember when you said you agree with me about 1 Peter 4:11? Because it’s not sounding like it right now! You see, Joseph, you can’t defend your beliefs with the word of God as a catholic, and that’s why you have to so heavily depend upon the words and traditions of a man-made church.

        • Joseph Richardson 9:01 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          I have already said that the word “co-redeemer” is nowhere in Scripture. (For what it’s worth, the word “co-redeemer” was also not in that quote from Benedict XV.) It is a logical consequence (especially in the Latin mind, which likes to stick prefixes on things) of saying that someone cooperates with the Redeemer (co + redemptor = together with the redeemer). Our fundamental difference, as you say, is that I don’t believe I have to base every single thing I say on the plain face of Scripture. I have already explained to you, citing Scripture, how Mary cooperated with God’s plan of salvation, and you did not argue with that: your answer was that Joseph did, too. And he did. If you believe that a lack of direct scriptural proof proves your point, then you’re welcome to think that. I disagree.

          Now, I have given you my best answer. So far that his looked like a game of chicken, with you doing everything you can to avoid answering my questions, which I asked first, eight hours ago (the argument on the other post, at 2 p.m. yesterday), long before you started this whole line of argument about co-redeemers. If you think this conversation is over, then you’re probably right, but not for the reasons you seem to think, and you’re not the only one walking away thinking his point was proven.

          • Eugene Adkins 9:07 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            For what it’s worth, the word “co-redeemer” was also not in that quote from Benedict XV.”

            Really? He’s not saying Mary is a co-redeemer? Why then you could’ve avoided the whole conversation by not using it yourself.

            And by the way, he said:

            As she suffered and almost died together with her suffering and dying Son, so she surrendered her mother’s rights over her Son for the salvation of the human race. And to satisfy the justice of God she sacrificed her Son, as well as she could, so that it may justly be said that she together with Christ has redeemed the human race.” (Pope Benedict XV (INTER SODALICIA)

            Yeah, that sounds like co-redeemer to me. So if the catholic church teaches idolatrous error when it comes to Mary, then why should I be concerned with anything else it teaches?

          • Eugene Adkins 9:11 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            Facts and thoughts, like the written tradition that makes up the Bible and the “oral tradition/fabrication” that the catholic church is built upon, are two different things my friend.

    • Joseph Richardson 9:11 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

      Dude. Chill. I just defended the argument that Mary and Joseph are co-redeemers. I also just said, as an aside, that the word “co-redeemer” is not in that quote. The word “co-redeemer” is not in that quote. And it’s not. It was a non sequitur, a random comment, which is true. You continue to avoid my well-meaning questions with baseless accusations and name-calling. I really do think you don’t have an answer for me. You’re right. We’re done here.

      • Eugene Adkins 9:14 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

        You defended it alright, but not with scripture…which is/was the whole point of the post. Remember?

        • Joseph Richardson 9:16 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          As I said, again, repeating myself for the third time, the word co-redeemer is not in Scripture. If you feel triumphant about that, then I’m happy for you. You still refuse to answer my questions, but instead keep changing the subject. I will not reply to you again unless you pick up the arguments you are clearly unable to answer.

          • Eugene Adkins 9:19 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            I don’t feel triumphant, but you should feel defeated since, again for the third time, that was the whole point of my post – catholics can’t defend what they believe with the Bible. It’s as simple as that. Why should I answer your questions with scripture if you’re not going to listen to scripture??? You have already said that you don’t base everything you believe in on the scriptures – so what’s the point of me answering with the scriptures alone if you’re not going to listen to them alone??? Do you see my point that I was trying to make and the one that I am making now?

        • Joseph Richardson 9:24 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

          Okay. Literally, the very last time I will say this.

          1. I already “defended what I believe with the Bible,” now some 32 hours ago, at 2 p.m. yesterday.
          2. I also quoted Scripture to you in my comment above, “defending what I believe.”
          3. You have refused to answer either post.

          This Catholic is perfectly able and willing to “defend what I believe with Scripture,” but either my arguments were so solid that you have no answers to them, or you lack the good faith to admit that I raised good points. In either case, I have absolutely nothing more to say to you.

          • Eugene Adkins 9:29 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            You said:

            “I quote from Scripture, the source of Truth, to demonstrate that what the Church teaches is true.”

            But then you said:

            “Our fundamental difference, as you say, is that I don’t believe I have to base every single thing I say on the plain face of Scripture.”

            Which is it? But anyways, Joseph, back up what you said…quote from the scriptures to show that what “the church” teaches about Mary (and now Joseph) being “co-redeemers” is true.

          • Eugene Adkins 9:36 pm on 2013-03-23 Permalink | Reply

            You raised no points. All you said was that the Bible doesn’t use the word co-redeemer but you still believe Mary and Joseph are co-redeemers because it’s what the catholic church teaches even though the Bible doesn’t.

            And don’t forget what else the catholic church teaches about Mary:

            “O Virgin most holy, none abounds in the knowledge of God except through thee; none, O Mother of God, attains salvation except through thee; none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Pope Leo XIII – ADIUTRICEM)

            I don’t think you’ll find that quoted in the Bible either…but you can try to prove me wrong if you like since you, “quote from Scripture, the source of Truth, to demonstrate that what the Church teaches is true.”

  • Eugene Adkins 7:22 am on 2013-03-01 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , pope, ,   

    If The Catholic Church Were Biblically Wise 

    If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the vacancy of the pope to stay just that way – vacant. Many Catholics (and even some people who aren’t Catholic???) worry about their church because it has no head. If they understood the true biblical nature of the church they would know that the church is never without her head. Jesus is the head of the church and his reign as such has not ended (Colossians 1:18, Ephesians 1:22-23). Two heads are not better than one!

    If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the vacancy of “Peter’s throne” to stay just that way – vacant. Many Catholics (and even some people who aren’t Catholic???) worry about finding the right person to continue Peter’s legacy. If they understood the true nature of Peter from the Bible they would know that Peter would never allow himself to sit on a “throne” over the church, they would know that Peter would never allow people to “bow and kiss his ring” and they would know that the Bible never refers to an office in the church called the “pope” (Acts 10:24-26, 1 Corinthians 12:27-28). Peter never sat with a golden scepter upon any “throne” above the church which Jesus Himself rules with a rod of iron (Psalm 2:8-9, Revelation 2:26-27).

    If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the silence of uninspired and fallible words to stay just that way – silent. Many Catholics (and even some who aren’t Catholics???) worry about the lack of spiritual guidance without a pope. If they understood the true biblical nature of the church they would know that they should listen to the inspired and infallible word of God that the church is called to follow. The word of God guides the church of God, the church of God does not guide the word of God (Ephesians 3:3-5; 2 Peter 1:3; Hebrews 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:15-17).

    If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would know there’s a difference between universal unity based upon error and universal unity based upon the truth…that’s one big if though!

    endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:3-6)

     
  • John T. Polk II 4:32 am on 2013-02-13 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , His Holiness, , pope,   

    Psalm 108 

    Vs. 1-5 repeat Psalm 57:7-11;

    Vs. 6-13 repeat Psalm 60:5-12.

    This Psalm was originally written by David as Psalm 57 and Psalm 60, but parts of those have been combined into Psalm 108. Since this Psalm repeats the previous Psalms, the comments are the same as for the previous Psalms.

    Vs. 1-5= Psalm 57:7-11 comments:

    Verses 7-11: David would not take his heart from before the LORD, but kept it  “steadfast,” and ready to “sing and give praise.” In verse 8, David speaks to his musical instruments: “Awake, lute and harp!” Clearly, even David did NOT include his musical instruments whenever he said “sing,” for they were an addition to his vocal praise of God! This, then, is yet another reference to such instruments left behind in Moses’ Law, for Jesus “has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross” (Colossians 2:14). Verse 9 points to David’s hope for the future, when God would be praised “among the peoples,” and “among the nations,” both frequently referring to “Gentiles,” which has happened since the church of Christ (the “kingdom of God” Acts 8:12) began in Acts 2. In verses 10-11, God’s “mercy,” “truth,” and “glory” are above the earth and cannot be tainted by anything that happens down here. For God to be “exalted” “above the heavens” means that no scientific discovery, no scientist, no human, can ever see, control, reach or ruin the “Most High.”

    Vs. 6-13= Psalm 60:5-12 comments:

    To be saved “with Your right hand” figuratively suggests that God still helps them with a strong arm (verse 5).

    Verses 6-8: It says in verse 6: “God has spoken in His holiness.” God’s dispensation of the tribes of Israelites is the final Word on the subject. “His holiness” always refers to God, and not a man (Pope, etc.). Jesus Christ gave Himself that sinners who obey the Gospel “might partake of His holiness” (Hebrews 12:10). Unless that would make each Christian a “Pope,” then what each Christian may “partake” of is not limited to one individual! It is a profanity for any religion to bestow upon any human the title of “His holiness,” for it is not reserved for one, but to all Christians it is said: “as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:15-16). In verse 7, God claims Gilead and Manasseh, both across the Jordan River from the Promised “mainland.” The tribe of Ephraim would lead; Judah would rule; verse 8, God even claimed their enemies: Moab would be a common “washpot;” Edom would be completely crushed; Philistia would shout triumphantly when taken and included.

    Verses 9-12: If God made the assignments in verses 6-8, then in verse 9, God asks for a leader to step forward and do this. David’s reply in verse 10 is that it was God who gave them victory, and should again. The principle statement in verses 11-12 appears to be “For the help of man is useless.” That acknowledgment sometimes is difficult, if not, impossible, to hear. Jesus heard the Canaanitish woman beg mercy for her “severely demon-possessed daughter” because she “came and worshiped Him, saying, ‘Lord, help me!’” (Matthew 15:21-28). “Her daughter was healed from that very hour” just as David’s help from God had come to him. David will emphasize his conclusion with, “My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.” If God created “heaven and earth” (and all the scientific evidence demands that He did!), then only He has the power to interact and override what happens on that earth. God sees, hears, and influences the affairs on earth, continually, for “He did not leave Himself without witness, in that He did good, gave us rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness” (Acts 14:17).

    All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

     
  • John T. Polk II 7:30 am on 2013-02-12 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , pope,   

    Was Peter the First “Pope?” 

    Matthew 16:13-20: When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” 14 So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”  20 Then He commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was Jesus the Christ.

     1. Jesus had said to “Simon Peter” John 1:40, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas (which is translated, A Stone [petros])” John 1:42

    a. Why did not Jesus give Peter the name “Petra” (feminine) in this passage, to relieve any confusion later?

    b. Jesus, not Peter, is referred to as petra in the New Testament:  Matthew 16:18: “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” Romans 9:33:  “As it is written: ‘Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense, And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame’” (quoting from Isaiah 8:14; 28:16). 1 Corinthians 10:4: “For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.” 1 Peter 2:8: “’A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense.’ They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.”

    c. There is NO original Aramaic manuscript of Matthew known. (1 If Matthew wrote it in Aramaic, God preserved a majority of Greek MSS; (2 Matthew, himself (guided by the Holy Spirit!), would have translated his book into Greek, for Greek was understood by most people then; (3 The only “Aramaism” preserved in this passage would be “Cephas,” but because the Greek word makes a distinction between Peter’s name and the foundation of the church, no appeal to the “Aramaic” would justify making Peter’s name equal to the foundation of the church of Christ! (4 As there are no original MSS of any other New Testament Books, either!

    d. Paul condemned as a “schism” any who followed Peter, not Jesus, as the Head of the church 1 Corinthians 1:12-13.

    e. When Jesus said to Peter “Follow Me” John 21:19, Roman Catholic Church says it is teaching Peter’s Primacy. But when Jesus tells Philip “Follow Me” John 1:43 NO ONE suggests the Roman Church is built upon Philip!!

    2. IF this clearly taught Peter’s Superiority over all the other Apostles, then:

    a. Why were they still disputing the issue later? Matthew 20:20-28

    b. How were James, Cephas & John all “pillars?” Galatians 2:9

    c. Then was Paul the Gentile “Pope?” Galatians 2:7-10

    d. How was the church of Christ “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone?” Ephesians 2:20

     3. Peter IS IN the foundation, but IS NOT “THE Foundation!”

    a. The Church of Christ is “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstoneEphesians 2:20

    b. NOTHING IN SCRIPTURE separates Peter from the other apostles in their work of establishing the church of Christ. 2 Corinthians 11:5: “For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles.”  1 Corinthians 9:5:  “Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?”

    c. Peter was never acknowledged as being in Rome, or its “Bishop!” (1 Paul was prisoner in Rome and wrote Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 2 Timothy, Philemon, but NEVER MENTIONED PETER AS BEING IN ROME! (2 Paul wrote Romans and saluted 27 Christians, but NOT Peter!   (3 Peter wrote 2 letters, but never mentioned being in Rome!                 —–John T. Polk II

     
  • Eugene Adkins 6:36 am on 2013-02-12 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , pope   

    What Was That Chapter and Verse Again??? 

    I heard a woman on the “Today Show” yesterday ask the “cardinal” of New York about the process of choosing a new pope. She asked about the “qualities” and “qualifications” that identify the person who could fulfill the position. This caught my attention and I waited for the man’s response. The same man who talked so much about the pope “fulfilling the office of the original pope, Peter the bishop of Rome” and so on. Well, I was waiting to hear some scripture quoted like you can for the biblical office of elder/bishop/pastor (no cardinals mind you) and deacons (1 Timothy 3 & Titus 1), but alas I didn’t hear one single scripture given to describe the qualifying and identifying marks of the office of the pope. I wonder why that is??? Maybe it’s because the “office” of the pope isn’t found in the Bible, but only in the writings of the “church” of Rome!

     
  • Eugene Adkins 10:33 pm on 2012-11-21 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Nativity scene, pope,   

    I Don’t Need the Pope to do My Book Review 

    The following excerpt comes from the Huffington Post. For the most part I consider their site to be more of a liberal huff and puff posting place but I wanted to give the link in case someone questioned the quote I’m going to give. It seems the Pope has decided to release another book about the life of Jesus. This one is supposed to focus on Jesus’ birth and childhood. The author of the review had this to say…

    “In his book, Benedict sidesteps the extrabiblical legends and focuses solely on what’s contained in the Gospel accounts of the New Testament.

    The three wise men from the Christmas story, Benedict concedes, could be inspired by a “theological idea” rather than by a “historical event,” though he says he prefers a more literal interpretation of the biblical account.

    The star of Bethlehem, he notes, has been convincingly identified with a major planetary conjunction that took place in the years 7-6 B.C.

    Benedict also recalls that, according to the Gospels, there are no animals in the Bethlehem stable to warm the newborn Jesus. But, he adds, no Nativity scene would be complete without them.

    Benedict remains convinced that the Gospel narrative of Jesus’ birth and infancy is not just a symbolical account or mere “meditation.”

    Matthew and Luke, he stresses, “didn’t want to write ‘stories’ but history, a real history, even if interpreted and understood” through the lens of the faith.”

    Here are my thoughts on this review and what it reveals about the Pope’s words in his new book:

    1) Actually letting the scriptures speak instead of speaking and making it scripture. What a novel idea!

    2) The three wise men could be inspired by a theological idea??? First off, who said there was three? Second off, for anyone to say that the account of the wise men could be based only upon a “theological idea” opens the door to saying that very thing about the entire gospel!

    Matthew begins his gospel by saying Jesus was the son of David and of Abraham – is that a “historical event” or just a “theological idea”? Matthew then moves onto the virgin birth and the angel’s appearance to Joseph – are those “historical events” or just “theological ideas”? Matthew then gets to the “wise men” from the east. “Historical event” or “theological idea”? Well, let’s see – Was Herod’s reign a “historical event” or “theological idea”? Was the trip into Egypt a “historical event” or a “theological idea”? Was the wrath of Herod directed toward children that fulfilled prophecy a “historical event” or just a “theological idea”? The return of Jesus’ family, after Herod’s death, to Nazareth and thus fulfilling more prophecy…was that a “historical event” or just “theological idea”? I know what Matthew would say, but the problem is that a lot of people don’t want Matthew to speak because they don’t like what they hear! If one chooses to play with any part of the scriptures and apply a “theological idea only side” title to anything in order to sidestep the “historical event side”, then that person might as well deny the very inspiration of the Bible that says it actually happened!

    3) Lastly, the nativity scene wouldn’t be complete without those animals? Even though none were there? Well, I don’t guess I can say much about that considering the scriptures don’t say much about that, but there is one thing I can say about the common nativity scene that is wrong – the wise men didn’t visit Jesus in the stable; that privilege was given to the shepherds. The wise men met the child Jesus in a house, not in a manger (Matthew 2:11). But I guess if it doesn’t matter about the animals, then why should it matter about the wise men? This type of revealed thinking does help to shed some light on how a person can say that the “written tradition” wouldn’t be complete without the “spoken tradition” even though the spoken contradicts the written.

    At the end of the day, people may review the Pope’s book, but I don’t need the Pope’s review of God’s Book. After all, if he knew how to properly interpret the scriptures then he wouldn’t call himself the Pope!

    When he arose, he took the young Child and His mother by night and departed for Egypt, and was there until the death of Herod, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, “Out of Egypt I called My Son.”” (Matthew 2:14-15, NKJV)

     
  • Ron Thomas 9:28 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , pope   

    The Arrogance of the Catholic Church 

    “Pope Benedict XVI has made a sweeping exoneration of the Jewish people for the death of Jesus Christ, tackling one of the most controversial issues in Christianity in a new book. In ‘Jesus of Nazareth – Part II’ excerpts released Wednesday, Benedict explains biblically and theologically why there is no basis in Scripture for the argument that the Jewish people as a whole were responsible for Jesus’ death” (Decatur Herald & Review, 3/3/2011, A8).

    In case the wording of this story might be suspect, in 1965, the Second Vatican Council document, Nostra Aetate, declared that the death of the Lord “could not be attributed to the Jews as a whole at the time or today.” In fact, according to the pope’s study, it was only a few Temple leaders and a small group of supporters who were primarily responsible for the Lord’s death.

    And Peter said, “…this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men)…. Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified” (Acts 2:23 and 36).

    What may be said about this? In one respect it is true that the sins of the individual had brought forth our Lord into this world and He, willingly, went to the cross on our behalf as our Savior. On the other hand, let it not be minimized what Peter said occurred. The “house of David” sent our Lord to the cross as a criminal!

    If the report in the newspaper is accurate, the Catholic Church is wrong – as is often the case.

     
    • David 9:39 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

      How is it the case that ‘the Catholic Church is wrong-as is often the case’? It was not all Jews who sent Christ to the Cross physically. Spiritually it was all mankind that sent him there-he died for our sins. But physically, it was only some Jews in Jerusalem at the Passover who put the Romans up to it and encouraged them to sentence him to a criminal death.
      It’s obvious to me that you’re not looking to make any Catholic friends. Name another way the Catholic Church is wrong…(by the way, I’m speaking of Church teaching, not how an individual Catholic might be wrong)

      • Ron 9:55 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

        David, this is what I said; I made a distinction between that which our Lord did for man spiritually, and that which the “hose of David” did to the Lord by sending Him to the cross as a criminal. Was it only some Jews? Here is the Kliest & Lilly reading of Acts 2:36 (Imprimatur: Albertus G. Meyer, 1956)), “Therefore, let all Israel know most assuredly that God has made him both Lord and Christ – this very Jesus whom you have crucified.” The “you” of this verse goes back to the nation “Israel.” That is what Peter said; if you want to take exception to it, you have to take that up with God.

        I have no desire to be at odds with Catholic people (individuals), but when the Scripture says one thing and an official opines with something that is contrary to what the Scripture says, well then, I suppose in my opposition to that teaching I might lose some friends.

        You asked me to name another way in which the Catholic Church is wrong; ok, I will. In the Scripture, David, where is it recorded that Mary was a perpetual virgin?

    • David 10:17 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

      If you want to take the Bible literally, you have to take the WHOLE Bible literally. But you don’t. See John Chapter 6 and Matthew 16:18-20. You choose how you want to interpret scripture, and you interpret it differently. So let me ask, do you think that Peter was saying that all Jews got together and decided to hold Jesus up for crucifixion? No, it was some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin.
      Regarding Mary’s perpetual virginity, where does scripture say she wasn’t always a virgin? For that matter, where is it written that scripture is the be-all and end-all? You can limit yourself, if you want, but unless you’re using the same materials, you can’t possibly say that the Catholic Church is wrong about it. You can dismiss what proof we have, if you want, but that doesn’t make your point true.

      • Ron 10:43 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

        David, you’ll have to do better than this. Tell me, how do YOU interpret the phrase the “House of David”? It appears as if you interpret it to be only some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin. Perhaps you can show from the Scripture the propriety of this interpretation; I am interested in a contextual passage where “house of David” is understood to be “some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin.” You also ask me concerning whether I think all the Jews got together to hold Jesus up for crucifixion, and this is supposed to be a serious question? Concerning your remark on John 6 and Matthew 18, I will dismiss this as a smokescreen, for that is all that it is.

        So, David, since you are telling me (offering as proof, I suppose) that since Scripture does not explicitly speak against the perpetual virginity of Mary, that it is acceptable to believe. Very well, let me ask whether this is a true or false statement (underlined portion): “I was already fully intent on writing you, about the salvation we share. But now I feel obliged to write and encourage you to fight hard for the faith delivered once for all to the saints” (New American Bible, 1982-83 edition, Catholic Bible Publishers).

        I appreciate the spirit in which you reply, David.

      • Ron 10:44 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

        David, you’ll have to do better than this. Tell me, how do YOU interpret the phrase the “House of David”? It appears as if you interpret it to be only some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin. Perhaps you can show from the Scripture the propriety of this interpretation; I am interested in a contextual passage where “house of David” is understood to be “some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin.” You also ask me concerning whether I think all the Jews got together to hold Jesus up for crucifixion, and this is supposed to be a serious question? Concerning your remark on John 6 and Matthew 18, I will dismiss this as a smokescreen, for that is all that it is.

        So, David, since you are telling me (offering as proof, I suppose) that since Scripture does not explicitly speak against the perpetual virginity of Mary, that it is acceptable to believe. Very well, let me ask whether this is a true or false statement (underlined portion): “I was already fully intent on writing you, about the salvation we share. But now I feel obliged to write and encourage you to fight hard for the faith delivered once for all to the saints” (New American Bible, 1982-83 edition, Catholic Bible Publishers).

        I appreciate the spirit in which you reply, David.

    • David 11:22 am on 2011-03-03 Permalink | Reply

      Well, let me ask you, did Peter just pull out a megaphone and accuse ALL the people of Israel? No, he didn’t. The apostles were Jews, did he accuse THEM of crucifying Jesus? No, he didn’t. Did he accuse himself, even though he denied our LORD? No, he didn’t. Did he accuse Joseph of Arimethea and Nicodemus? Nope. Therefore, He wasn’t speaking to all Jews. He wasn’t using an all-encompassing ‘you’.

      Dismiss it all you want, you choose as literal what you choose, and Catholics have always known what was always literal, and what wasn’t. Again, the point is you pick and choose what you want to believe, and dismiss the rest.
      Regarding what’s acceptible to believe, we are to believe Scripture, along with Sacred Tradition, interpretted by the Magisterium, the teaching authority. The specific text which shows us Mary’s perpetual virginity is the Protoevangelium of James. Mary was a consecrated virgin, Joseph was her guardian. Joseph was to hold her consecrated virginity in highest regard, because anything consecrated to God is only for Him, in perpetuity.

      • Stephen R. Bradd 9:20 am on 2011-03-05 Permalink | Reply

        Greetings David. I am glad you affirm we are to believe Scripture. That is the standard I try to study, understand, & live by.

        I would appreciate hearing your thoughts on a Scripture in Matthew–specifically Matt. 13:55,56, which speaks of Jesus’ mother Mary, along with His brothers and sisters. How is it the case that Jesus had brothers and sisters in the flesh if his mother remained a virgin? Such is not possible, unless these brothers & sisters were also conceived miraculously as Christ was. Is this your understanding or is there another explanation? Furthermore, Matt. 1:25 implies that Joseph and Mary had sexual relations after Jesus was born (which is consistent with what 13:55,56 teaches).

        Regarding interpretation and whether a word, phrase, or sentence should be understood literally or figuratively, I believe a simply rule is sufficient (and it is a rule we all use in everyday discourse): Everything should be understood literally UNLESS there is something in the immediate or wider context that would REQUIRE a non-literal meaning in order to avoid a contradiction.

        I look forward to your reply.

        • David 11:36 am on 2011-03-07 Permalink | Reply

          As does the Catholic Church, we just have our teaching office, which Jesus gave us, and Sacred Tradition, that Jesus gave us also. John himself said that scripture could not contain all that Jesus said and did. Besides, the early Christian Church was more about doing than about writing and reading.
          Regarding Jesus and his ‘brothers’, the Bible is replete with examples of the use of ‘brother’ to mean something other than blood relative. Lot, for example, is called Abraham’s “brother” (Gen. 14:14), even though, being the son of Haran, Abraham’s brother (Gen. 11:26–28), he was actually Abraham’s nephew. Similarly, Jacob is called the “brother” of his uncle Laban (Gen. 29:15). Kish and Eleazar were the sons of Mahli. Kish had sons of his own, but Eleazar had no sons, only daughters, who married their “brethren,” the sons of Kish. These “brethren” were really their cousins (1 Chr. 23:21–22).

          The terms “brothers,” “brother,” and “sister” did not refer only to close relatives. Sometimes they meant kinsmen (Deut. 23:7; Neh. 5:7; Jer. 34:9), as in the reference to the forty-two “brethren” of King Azariah (2 Kgs. 10:13–14).

          But it’s less proper to say “Jesus didn’t have any brothers” than it is to say that Mary had no other children, in other words, she was always a virgin. Those named in Scripture are clearly shown not to be birthed by Mary, but others. We know that James the younger’s mother was named Mary. Look at the descriptions of the women standing beneath the cross: “among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of the sons of Zebedee” (Matt. 27:56); “There were also women looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome” (Mark 15:40).

          Then look at what John says: “But standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene” (John 19:25). If we compare these parallel accounts of the scene of the crucifixion, we see that the mother of James and Joseph must be the wife of Clopas. So far, so good.

          An argument against this, though, is that James is elsewhere (Matt. 10:3) described as the son of Alphaeus, which would mean this Mary, whoever she was, was the wife of both Clopas and Alphaeus. But Alphaeus and Clopas are the same person, since the Aramaic name for Alphaeus could be rendered in Greek either as Alphaeus or as Clopas. Another possibility is that Alphaeus took a Greek name similar to his Jewish name, the way that Saul took the name Paul.

          So it’s probable that James the younger is the son of Mary and Clopas. We can study the other named brothers of Jesus in the same way.

          Regarding scriptural interpretation, Catholics believe it is better to look at those closest to Jesus, whose writings tell us what was meant when it was said. We believe the Holy Spirit prevents errors from creeping into scriptural interpretation. So we believe that, in John 6, when Jesus tells the disciples that they must eat his flesh and drink his blood, that it was literal. And also when Jesus, in Matthew 16:18-20 and the verses surrounding that text, Jesus literally made Peter the cornerstone of His Church, and that he promised that his church would last until the end of time. That’s the Catholic Church.

        • David 11:41 am on 2011-03-07 Permalink | Reply

          Your interpretation of what “until” means is flawed. If you and I meet on the street, and after our conversation, I use the phrase “Until we meet again…” does this mean we are definitely going to meet again? Consider this line: “Michal the daughter of Saul had no children till the day of her death” (2 Sam. 6:23). Are we to assume she had children after her death?

          There is also the burial of Moses. The book of Deuteronomy says that no one knew the location of his grave “until this present day” (Deut. 34:6, Knox). But we know that no one has known since that day either.

          Also, first-born does not imply that there will be a second-born.

          • Ron 5:00 am on 2011-03-08 Permalink | Reply

            I am currently out of town, David. When I return, is about a week, you will get a more thorough reply. That which you offered, I expected. This is a standard reply and one that refuses to accept language at it basic level of understanding.

        • David 10:06 am on 2011-03-08 Permalink | Reply

          Ron, of course, you know that this is what I expected from you, as well. The ‘basic understanding of language’, I think you left out a word…from your point of view, you mean ‘the basic understanding of language today‘. Well, to understand the Bible you need to understand the times in which it was written as well as the context. That’s where the Apostolic Tradition comes in, and the Magesterium. You also have to look at the vast gulf between the time of Jesus’ resurrection and the Protestant reformation, which is the Catholic Church. The fact that Protestantism decided to redefine words and whole established doctrines is pretty telling. It’s also telling that it was secular governments that was on the side of the Reformation. In fact, “Protestant Reformation” ignores the fact that “Catholic Reformation” was happening before Luther ever posted his 95 theses. In fact, the Catholic Church is in a constant state of reformation as we try to conform to the will of God.

          • Ron 6:09 am on 2011-03-14 Permalink | Reply

            David, I won’t address anything about the protestant reformation; I will only address what Scripture says. You say that I fail to understand language at the time it was written, and only use language as it is used in today’s context. Very well, demonstrate what part of anything I said failed to interpret a word accurately, that is, in accordance with how Paul or Peter, or even Jesus used that word. Don’t give me your opinion; give me a substantive and authoritative response from a source I can check. Also, David, I am interested in (and still waiting on) your response to the Jude 3 reference I gave you earlier. I gave the translation out of the New American Bible (which is Catholic). My question to you was whether or not this is a true or false statement. I am also still waiting on whether you can show, from Scripture, how the “house of David” can be biblically interpreted as a reference to “some Pharisees and the Sanhedrin.”

        • Stephen R. Bradd 1:10 pm on 2011-03-09 Permalink | Reply

          Hello David. It would be easy for me to get bogged down in the details of this thread, but I want us to focus on the bigger picture first. If we are able to agree on the bigger picture, the smaller details will resolve themselves accordingly.

          I accept the Bible as THE standard of authority–period. You affirm that you accept the Bible, but then ADD “Sacred Tradition” and the “teaching office.” The fact that you ADD these other things implies the insufficiency of the Scriptures in your mind. We do not need either of these other things, David. The Bible alone is sufficient. Yes, we are wise to study historical context, etc., to more fully understand God’s word, but no “Sacred Traditions,” “teaching office,” or anything/anyone else needs to be embraced as authoritative.

          I fear that you have allowed traditions to form your beliefs (which arose long after Jesus and the apostles [who were led into all the truth by the Holy Spirit] died). The Bible affirms for itself that it is what we need to be guided into ALL the truth God wants us to have (2 Tim. 3:16,17; 2 Pet. 1:3). Additionally, if we ADD to God’s word (via “Sacred Traditions,” “teaching office,” etc.), we fall under God’s curse (Gal. 1:6-9; Rev. 22:18,19). I would like to hear your thoughts on these 4 passages, if you are kind enough to reply. To me, they seem to clearly shut the door to any other sources of authority beyond the Bible itself. I know that Jesus and the apostles did a lot more than what was recorded in the New Testament, but the Holy Spirit saw fit to record & preserve what we need. And certainly nothing left unrecorded would conflict with the teachings that were recorded.

          If God wanted us to embrace sources of authority outside the Bible, why doesn’t the Scripture tell us of such? Instead it warns us to not be swept away by false doctrines (1 Tim. 4:1-3).

          Just today I was reading a bulletin from a church in KY that reminded me of this discussion. I will post the article as a new entry (titled: “Catholic Advice”). It is relevant to our discussion here.

          And finally, yes, I am aware of what you say about the generic use of the term “brother” in Scripture. But, to say that it could refer to another relationship is not to prove that it does. What is the natural reading of the verse? I think Mark 6:3 might be the clearest on this point. How else could Mark word this verse to convey what I believe he did convey? If Mark wanted to tell us that Mary had other children (and thus wasn’t a perpetual virgin), what words should he have used? As I affirmed in the earlier post, we should read Scripture literally unless there is a compelling contextual reason not to. There is nothing in the BIBLE to suggest Mary remained a virgin and much evidence to the contrary. I am not interested in “Sacred Tradition” or “teaching office,” but if you can show me something from the Bible itself pertaining to Mary’s alleged perpetual virginity, I will accept it.

        • David 1:35 pm on 2011-03-09 Permalink | Reply

          Stephen,
          If the Bible alone is sufficient, why are there so many arguments about what it actually means? We have adult baptism/infant baptism, Real Presence/ just a symbol, faith/works-in other words, all sorts of interpretation about what the scriptures actually say. And actually, the Bible does tell us, exactly that we are to use scripture and tradition. Paul tells Timothy exactly that, in one of the passages you mention 2 Tim 3:16. It says All Scripture is inspired by God and profitablefor teaching…When read in the context of the surrounding passages, one discovers that Paul’s reference to Scripture is only part of his exhortation that Timothy take as his guide Tradition and Scripture. The two verses immediately before it state: “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 3:14–15).

          Paul tells Timothy to continue in what he has learned for two reasons: first, because he knows from whom he has learned it—Paul himself—and second, because he has been educated in the scriptures. The first of these is a direct appeal to apostolic tradition, the oral teaching which the apostle Paul had given Timothy. So Protestants must take 2 Timothy 3:16-17 out of context to arrive at the theory of sola scriptura. But when the passage is read in context, it becomes clear that it is teaching the importance of apostolic tradition!

          The Bible denies that it is sufficient as the complete rule of faith. Paul says that much Christian teaching is to be found in the tradition which is handed down by word of mouth (2 Tim. 2:2). He instructs us to “stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter” (2 Thess. 2:15).

          This oral teaching was accepted by Christians, just as they accepted the written teaching that came to them later. Jesus told his disciples: “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me” (Luke 10:16). The Church, in the persons of the apostles, was given the authority to teach by Christ; the Church would be his representative. He commissioned them, saying, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28:19).

          And how was this to be done? By preaching, by oral instruction: “So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes by the preaching of Christ” (Rom. 10:17). The Church would always be the living teacher. It is a mistake to limit “Christ’s word” to the written word only or to suggest that all his teachings were reduced to writing. The Bible nowhere supports either notion.

          Stephen, if you’re not willing to take what Scripture tells us, above, the way it’s written, how can we discuss anything. The early Christian Church was a religion of the word, not a religion of the book. Written scripture, other than the Old Testament, even some of which was contested as whether it was canonical or not, was a thought a couple decades after Jesus’ resurrection. Furthermore, there is nothing in the Bible, either, to suggest that she had children of her own. The Bible proves that Mary was a virgin at her conception, and a virgin at the time of Christ’s birth. Other writings tell of her earlier life, when she was consecrated to the Lord. You do not take back what has been given to the Lord. Mary is ever virgin. Besides that, we have 1500 years of writings after Christ’s resurrection to show what the universal church believed for all that time. Sounds to me like you want to throw the baby out with the bath water.

        • David 10:11 am on 2011-03-14 Permalink | Reply

          Ron, I was wondering where that quote came from. I don’t think it’s the NAB, because here’ what Jude 3 reads there: “Beloved, although I was making every effort to write to you about our common salvation, I now feel a need to write to encourage you to contend for the faith that was once for all handed down to the holy ones. ” Of course there is nothing false in the Bible. I can’t see what you underlined at all, but I suppose you’re asking about “our common salvation”, which, properly understood, means the teachings of the Christian faith derived from the apostolic preaching and to be kept by the Christian community.
          I already understood what ‘brother’ means in the Bible, and your understanding of ‘until’ and ‘first-born’.
          Regarding Mary having other children, sources: In A.D. 380, Helvidius proposed that Mary had other children because of the “brothers” in Matthew 13:55. He was rebutted by Jerome, who was arguably the greatest biblical scholar of the day. The Protestant reformer John Calvin seconded Jerome: “Helvidius has shown himself too ignorant, in saying that Mary had several sons, because mention is made in some passages to the brothers of Christ” [quoted by Bernard Leeming, Protestants and Our Lady, 9]. Martin Luther agreed with Calvin that Mary was always a virgin, as did Ulrich Zwingli: “I esteem immensely the Mother of God, the ever chaste, immaculate Virgin Mary” [E. Stakemeier, De Mariologia et Oecumenismo, K. Balic, ed., 456].

          Regarding the word translated ‘until’, heos, cite to me how you come to your conclusion.

          Biblically, Mary’s ever virginity:
          In the case of Mary’s perpetual virginity, the key to explaining Matthew 13:55 is understanding the Greek word for “brethren” (adelphoi) and its feminine counterpart (adelphe). If the Greek words used in this passage connote only siblings, then the Catholic dogma of Mary’s perpetual virginity is false.

          However, the word adelphoi has a much broader meaning. It may refer to male relatives that one is not a descendant of and that are not descendant from one (such as a blood brother, step-brother, nephew, uncle, cousin, etc.) or non-relatives such as neighbors, fellow workers, co-religionists, and friends.

          Because of this broad usage, we can be sure that the 120 “brothers” in Acts 1:15 did not have the same mother. Neither did Lot and his uncle Abraham, who were called “brothers” (Gen. 11:26-28, 29:15).

          The reason relatives were called brothers or sisters was because in Hebrew, there was no word for cousin, nephew, or uncle. So the person was referred to as simply a “brother.” Linguistically, this was far easier than calling the person the son of a mother’s sister. Since the New Testament was written in a dialect of Greek that was heavily influenced by the Semitic culture, many of the Hebrew idioms (like “brother” having multiple meanings) intrude into the Greek text. So, the fact that Jesus had adelphoi does not mean that Mary had other children.

        • Stephen R. Bradd 8:56 am on 2011-03-16 Permalink | Reply

          Hello David.
          Let’s talk more about “tradition.” You are correct in affirming that the New Testament does speak favorably of traditions from the APOSTLES (e.g., 2 Thess. 2:15; 3:6). However, there is such a thing as traditions of MEN–and they are not viewed favorably (e.g., Col. 2:8; 1 Pet. 1:18).

          How can we tell the difference between an apostolic tradition or a tradition of men? That’s simple. God preserved the apostolic traditions that are needed by us in the Scriptures! The divinely approved “traditions” taught in the 1st century are precisely what constitues our New Testament today.

          This brings our discussion full circle–and back to Jude 3. Ron’s bringing up of that verse was to emphasize (I presume) the phrase – “the faith that was ONCE FOR ALL handed down.” The idea here is that God revealed–once for ALL TIME in the 1st century–what He wanted for Christians to believe and practice. He revealed it via the apostles and other inspired men. They taught it verbally and it was known as inspired tradition AND they wrote down what the Holy Spirit wanted preserved and it is known by us today as Scripture.

          If God word’s/apostolic tradition has been revealed ONCE FOR ALL TIME in the 1st century (and it has per Jude 3), then we have no expectation of further revelation beyond the time of the apostles. Thus, by the end of the 1st century, God’s word had been FULLY revealed (“once for all” – Jude 3). God was finished giving us everything He wanted to give us. Anything that claims to come beyond that time (under the guise of “additional revelations” or “ex cathedra”, etc.) is nothing more than the tradition of MEN. It is without God’s authority or approval. It is false doctrine.

          This is why I brought up Gal. 1:8,9 earlier – “But even if we [apostles] or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse!”

          David, the fact that the Catholic church even has a “pope” is a different gospel than what Paul and the other apostles revealed. There is no New Testament authority for a person to claim the type of authority your pope does. Such is a tradition of MEN, not God. Even if the pope were “an angel from heaven,” Paul tells me not to listen to him–since his teachings are different than the apostles!

          What we need is the Bible and the Bible alone. The Bible includes all the “apostolic traditions” God wanted us to have–period.

        • David 10:07 am on 2011-03-16 Permalink | Reply

          Stephen, the only thing unbiblical about the pope is what we call him. But the Tradition (I’m going to use capital t for apostolic tradition and small t for man-made tradition) of the leader of the universal church is absolutely Biblical-read Matthew 16:18-19. Also, see the preeminence of Peter in the Gospels and in the Acts of the Apostles. Peter made decisions for the Church of his time. He converted 3000 on Pentecost as the leader of the Church. Christ gave him the authority to bind and to loose, which is the office of Prime Minister. As can be seen in Isaiah 22:22, kings in the Old Testament appointed a chief steward to serve under them in a position of great authority to rule over the inhabitants of the kingdom. Jesus quotes almost verbatum from this passage in Isaiah, and so it is clear what he has in mind. He is raising Peter up as a father figure to the household of faith (Is. 22:21), to lead them and guide the flock (John 21:15-17). This authority of the prime minister under the king was passed on from one man to another down through the ages by the giving of the keys, which were worn on the shoulder as a sign of authority. Likewise, the authority of Peter has been passed down for 2000 years by means of the papacy.

          It is important to keep in mind what the Catholic Church means by tradition. The term does not refer to legends or mythological accounts, nor does it encompass transitory customs or practices which may change, as circumstances warrant, such as styles of priestly dress, particular forms of devotion to saints, or even liturgical rubrics. Sacred or apostolic tradition consists of the teachings that the apostles passed on orally through their preaching. These teachings largely (perhaps entirely) overlap with those contained in Scripture, but the mode of their transmission is different.

          They have been handed down and entrusted to the Churchs. It is necessary that Christians believe in and follow this tradition as well as the Bible (Luke 10:16). The truth of the faith has been given primarily to the leaders of the Church (Eph. 3:5), who, with Christ, form the foundation of the Church (Eph. 2:20). The Church has been guided by the Holy Spirit, who protects this teaching from corruption (John 14:25-26, 16:13).

          Paul illustrated what tradition is: “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures. . . . Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed” (1 Cor. 15:3,11). The apostle praised those who followed Tradition: “I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you” (1 Cor. 11:2).

          The first Christians “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching” (Acts 2:42) long before there was a New Testament. From the very beginning, the fullness of Christian teaching was found in the Church as the living embodiment of Christ, not in a book. The teaching Church, with its oral, apostolic tradition, was authoritative. Paul himself gives a quotation from Jesus that was handed down orally to him: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).

          This saying is not recorded in the Gospels and must have been passed on to Paul. Indeed, even the Gospels themselves are oral tradition which has been written down (Luke 1:1–4). What’s more, Paul does not quote Jesus only. He also quotes from early Christian hymns, as in Ephesians 5:14. These and other things have been given to Christians “through the Lord Jesus” (1 Thess. 4:2).

          Fundamentalists say Jesus condemned tradition. They note that Jesus said, “And why do you transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?” (Matt. 15:3). Paul warned, “See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ” (Col. 2:8). But these verses merely condemn erroneous human traditions, not truths which were handed down orally and entrusted to the Church by the apostles. These latter truths are part of what is known as apostolic tradition, which is to be distinguished from human traditions or customs.

          Finally, the Gospel of John tells us “There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written. ” John 21:25

          So I’ve shown you Biblical truth about the Pope, and how the Bible alone is not enough (even the Bible doesn’t say that it’s enough). What else?

  • Mike Riley 9:15 pm on 2010-06-11 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , beg, , , , pope, ,   

    Pope Benedict – Leader of the Ignorant 

    I read where Pope Benedict begs for forgiveness from victims for the sins of all those pedophile priests who have been sexually abusing little boys for years.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100611/ap_on_re_eu/eu_vatican_priests

    If adherents to the Catholic church would simply open their Bibles and read it for themselves, they would find that (1) a sinful pope is not needed on earth to represent Christ as His “vicar”, and (2) that celibacy is not a normal lifestyle for men. No where in the Bible do we find the teaching of celibacy for priests (1 TImothy 4:1-5). Rather, marriage is promoted – even among the apostles (1 Corinthians 7:9; 1 Corinthians 7:28; 1 Corinthians 9:5; Hebrews 13:4), for Peter was married (Matthew 8:14).

    There would be none of this foolishness going on if folks in the Catholic church would just simply adhere to clear Bible teaching. If they would do that, the Catholic church would soon cease to exist.

     
c
compose new post
j
next post/next comment
k
previous post/previous comment
r
reply
e
edit
o
show/hide comments
t
go to top
l
go to login
h
show/hide help
shift + esc
cancel