Skip to comments.The Protestant Heresy
Posted on 10/14/2008 6:36:15 PM PDT by stfassisi
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Thank you so much for sharing your insights, dear brother in Christ!
I'm not sure it's going to be possible to have a reasoned conversation here, but I'll try,
From our POV that argument smacks of "works-righteousness". The wonder is not only that some Popes were scoundrels whom Dante, no doubt with little fear of contradiction, wrote into the Inferno. The wonder is also that such scoundrels did not turn the Church aside from her essential task and message.
If we are going to adopt "simul justus et peccator" as a standard, well, peccatores are all over the Church, and yet the Gospel is preached and souls are saved.
In other news, I think the title of this thread is needlessly inflammatory, but Catholic ecclesiology and Protestant ecclesiology (to the extent that that is one thing) differ greatly. They can't both be right. So you all think we're teaching a heretical doctrine, and we think you are. There's plenty of "nyahh, nyahh!" to go around, if that's going to be the game.
My wife is actually Catholic, pretty much conservative, we go to Mass each Sunday. I remain seated while 95% of the folks go up to receive Communion.
The reason for my harsh response is that I have met so many Catholics who are completely un-schooled in even the basics - one of my wife's college classmates got "hooked" on the DaVinci Code book and did not even know enough to understand why the concept of Jesus having married was completely un-orthodox and heretical from any standpoint.
My criticism of the Catholic Church is that they are essentially a spiritual version of the DMV - bureaucratic, slow-moving, not capable of generating excitement among people.
Yeah, boy, howdy!
Mind you, it's set up to be as inefficient as possible. Take a group of a billion, give or take, give it the principle of subsidiarity, a code of laws which consist mostly of exceptions, and things like the "rule" for lay Dominicans, which needs a directory to tell us what it means on the ground, and, besides, after the former rule was pretty much declared a dead letter, the new rule wasn't approved, and ... well, it makes you believe in God, because these people couldn't find their, uh, mitres with both hands.
In fact, that's one of the Mad Dawg "proofs" of the Church. God MUST be involved because if it had been left to these bozos the whole thing would have blown up in their face around 100 AD.
And another wise man has said, "It takes a lot of manure to grow roses." Seemingly our supply of roses is assured.
I can understand your point of view. I think this explains why so many Catholics leave - they haven't a clue of their faith and are indeed looking for God. They don't know their faith and do not recognize the symbols of the reality right in front of their face. So they go to seemingly "enthusiastic" communities that preach the bible alone. Usually, they are smaller communities where people get to know each other and appreciate God's Word. All of this is available in the Catholic Church, as well, if people took their faith more seriously.
When I ask people on why they leave, they talk about a 'dead religion'. I then ask, "what did you do about it? Did you try to start up a bible study or were you active in the St. Vincent de Paul society or some other active group?" Usually, the answer is "no". And it is so easy to convince another Christian that they are following false doctrines if the "catholic" doesn't know the first thing about his faith. I see this over and over on these sites, responses from "ex-catholics" who cannot explain the Catholic faith as taught in the Catechism, only a strawman taught to them by pastor Mary Sue...
May this humble Protestant beg your indulgence for our transgressions? Er, ... In round dollars, how much is that going to cost me?
Need I remind you of the horrific sinner that Saint Paul was in persecuting Christians before his conversion?
The Pope is infallibly protected from errors in dogmatic teachings regarding matters of Faith and Morals.
Many Popes had no involvement in these teachings through the ages.
This does not mean that they were not part of Apostolic succession either
Here is a more accurate source for Pope Alexander VI
The feet are adequate, thank you.
So, lissen, is it the possibility of a kind of "The temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord," self-delusion that cranks you up the most about this kind of thing, or what?
Certainly there is the risk or threat or somesuch of a kind of institutional arrogance and presumption. I would say that wasn't so much the problem with the idea of the institution itself but the sinfulness of the d00d with the idea.
That is, I can say, "I'm Catholic; I'm cool," OR I can say, "I'm Catholic. I have been given this awesome institutional gift as part of my allotment of talents. Woe is me if I bury this talent! Woe is me if I think having this talent I can leave it where it lies and, as long as I get my ticket punched, I am among the blessed."
It's not, to go further, a matter of earning my salvation. Far from it! But, well we used to distinguish between "free grace" and "cheap grace" in seminary. If I think God's grace a precious gift, I will think of it more and have recourse to it more and more. In my case extremely little by extremely little, the joy of having been given such a gift will penetrate my rough skin and even my stony heart and maybe, around the edges, little hints of vivification might be spotted, if the person looking were very alert and discerning. But, to be as clear as I can, that would be Christ's life, not mine, operating.
But we are clinging and posturing creatures. Given glorious robes because of the mercy of the King, we immediately put on airs as if the robes were earned, as if the King had finally realized OUR worth!
So we believe that the "plene esse of the Church subsists among those who are in communion with the See of Rome. If we say that as a boast, we are in peril -- I quite see that. If we view it as an entirely unmerited and bountiful gift, and one which not so much obliges but is itself also an obligation to appreciate more and more the splendor and grace of the gift, I think we are maybe not in such peril.
Let me put it another way. Being Catholic is to be poor. Any Catholic who thinks he's rich is poor indeed, while any Catholic who sees his poverty has all he needs.
Something like that anyway.
Aw, come on! We take plastic now. (And people say we’re behind the times ... tsk tsk.)
Ask yourself why man has to be excited and amused all of the time in order to worship God?
Living a humble life of prayer and charity is not popular in the world of modern man who can only accept a religion self excitement and amusement
There was a flaw in the latches of the early Vermont Castings "Resolute" stoves. A shifting log could open the door. One night this happened and the damped down fire roared and the stove burned red. It was a while before I could get close enough to close the door.
Today is Teresa of Avila's memorial. For a while she burned darkly and hotly. Finally she incandesced. So also with Catherine of Siena.
Mind you, every congregation has its share of wet blankets, but this is a flame which will not go out.
There’s much of His wisdom in your post, Brother.
I don’t know that I have a specific answer to what I understand of your question.
The abiding concern . . . in ANY large organized ‘Christian” group . . . is that the group, it’s dogma, customs, traditions etc. quickly—as in QUICKLY take priority in far too many lives
over God and Scripture and Holy Spirit.
I see the Vatican edifice as the worst example of that—unsurprisingly given the centuries etc. But it is far from the only example of that.
EVERY organized group older than about a year and a half has the same problems.
I am confident, however, that The Lord will be turning up the heat on all in this era . . . particularly those who most stridently CLAIM to be His while having another priority askew from Him regardless of how whitewashed.
And, I have a strong intuition that some hereon who have been most strident with askewed priorities will be getting some very extra attention from the refiner’s fires and sifting mechanisms of Heaven in their personal lives where their attachments are most intense.
God is done with playing church and with those who have a death grip on playing church—He will try to turn many of them around . . . but not endlessly and less and less politely.
As I’ve said before, I’m no longer concerned about your relationship with God, His having confirmed in my heart, mind and spirit that you have an authentic relationship with Him and that He’s well able and willing to sort out the details with you in His way and in His time. I’m quite cool with that.
I cherish your friendship and your Holy Spirit wisdom.
Some others hereon have no clue what tree they are barking up . . . nor the consequences accruing.
Does apostolic succession impugn the all-powerful Elohim ? shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua
Thanks for the post, albeit a lengthy one. I could comment on many portions of the text, but this very early statement caught my attention.
The Reformation started off as a particular movement when Martin Luther posted his 95 Thesis Against the Papal Use of Indulgences. Luther desparately wanted a debate, but the Church would not allow one. It was only when the Church, with the help of the Emperor, tried to silence Luther, did it become a very wide general movement. And to Luther's credit, he often times had to reign in those who used the general movement to their own religious and political ends. As such, Luther did everything he could to keep the Reformation as a specific movement.
It is true that there were other reformers that came later who tried to make the movement a general one -- the Anabaptists being one.
Not to disagree with you, but I think the same is true of many protestants as well. When people believe that "belonging to a church" or "going to church" is enough, Christ's work remains undone.
There were only a small amount people who were involved in the indulgence abuse issue and the Church condemned it and reprimanded those involved.
Luther made the mistake of not staying within the Church to reform from within and he ended up regretting what he did .Luther saw that it lead to confusion as he writes this...
"This one will not hear of Baptism, and that one denies the sacrament, another puts a world between this and the last day: some teach that Christ is not God, some say this, some say that: there are as many sects and creeds as there are heads. No yokel is so rude but when he has dreams and fancies, he thinks himself inspired by the Holy Ghost and must be a prophet." De Wette III, 61. quoted in O'Hare
Luther goes than admits he was wrong and gives praise to the Catholic Church when he writes this...
"We concede -- as we must -- that so much of what they (the Catholic Church) say is true: that the papacy has God's word and the office of the apostles, and that we have received Holy Scriptures, Baptism, the Sacrament, and the pulpit from them. What would we know of these if it were not for them?" Sermon on the gospel of St. John, chaps. 14 - 16 (1537), in vol. 24 of LUTHER'S WORKS, St. Louis, Mo.: Concordia, 1961, 304.
You are correct, Luther did not want to leave the Catholic Church. He did want to reform it from within, but the church would have none of it. Luther was tried in a secular court at the advice of Duke Frederick the Wise, Elector. Archbishop Lang, the highest ranking catholic in the German States, was given the assignment of making Luther admit his heresy. Lang, of course, showed his true colors when he said that the Luther needed to be expelled. The words he used were a veiled death threat.
Luther's changes became very popular due to the handling of his "heresy" by the catholic church. Later, Luther realized that his separation from the church was God's will and was necessary for the good of the "pagan" peasants, as he called them.
Luther continued in his heretical solo scripture "sin boldly" attitude and there was no need for him to be part of the reform within the Church anymore than there was a need for the arians or any other heretical belief to be part of Church reform throughout the ages
Luther realized that his separation from the church was God's will
Joseph Smith, David Korish and even the muslim's believe they were following God's will as well.
We know there can only be one truth though,not many opposite of it with various beliefs
I wish you a blessed day