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The Semi-Permeable Membranes of the Various Protestantisms [Ecumenical]
ic ^ | July 21, 2009 | Mark Shea

Posted on 07/21/2009 10:09:01 AM PDT by NYer

One basic rule of thumb to understand in Catholic/Protestant conversations is that it is not the case that Catholics rely on Sacred Tradition and Protestants don't. Rather, Catholics (and by this I mean "educated Catholics speaking out of the Magisterial teaching of the Church") rely on Sacred Tradition and know they do, while Protestants rely on (parts) of Sacred Tradition and (usually) don't know they do.

So, for instance, despite Paul's prescriptions (directed only at clergy of his day) that a man must be the husband of but one wife, nowhere in the text of Scripture is it made clear that Christian marriage must be monogamous for all (a fact that did not escape Luther or John Milton). Nowhere does Scripture spell out that the Holy Spirit is a person, much less the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, consubstantial with the Father and the Son. Similarly, you will look in vain for instructions in Scripture on how to contract a valid marriage (unless you buy this list of "Top 10 Ways to Find a Wife, According to the Bible"):
 
10. Find an attractive prisoner of war, bring her home, shave her head, trim her nails, and give her new clothes. Then she's yours (Dt 21:11-13).
9. Find a prostitute and marry her (Hos 1:1-3).
8. Find a man with seven daughters, and impress him by watering his flock (Moses, Ex 2:16-21).
7. Purchase a piece of property, and get a woman as part of the deal (Boaz, Ru 4:5-10).
6. Go to a party and hide. When the women come out to dance, grab one and carry her off to be your wife (Benjaminites, Jgs 21:19-25).
5. Have God create a wife for you while you sleep (Adam, Gn 2:19-24).
4. Kill any husband and take his wife (David, 2 Sm 11).
3. Cut 200 foreskins off of your future father-in-law's enemies and get his daughter for a wife (David, 1 Sm 18:27).
2. Even if no one is out there, just wander around a bit and you'll definitely find someone (Cain, Gn 4:16-17).
1. Don't be so picky. Make up for quality with quantity (Solomon, 1 Kgs 11:1-3).

Of course, this doesn't really help much. The fact is, the Bible says "marriage is good" but gives us not one word of instruction on how to do it. That's because Scripture is not and never was intended to be the Big Book of Everything. And yet, of course, Protestants all over the world get married, believe in God the Holy Spirit, and have but one spouse because, as James Dobson says, God's plan is one man and one woman. How do they do this when Scripture is so unclear?
 
Whether they realize it or not, they do it by accepting Sacred Tradition percolated to them from the Catholic Church through the Protestant tradition. It's the same way they know that the books of the Bible they accept are supposed to be books of the Bible. It's the same way they know that public revelation closed with the death of the apostles, even though Scripture is completely silent on the matter (Revelation 22:18-19 doesn't count since that passage refers to the Book of Revelation, not to the Bible, which was not fully collated -- and from which Revelation was sometimes excluded -- before the late fourth century).
 
 
Retention of Catholic Sacred Tradition fragments has kept Protestantism in such sanity as it still possesses. So when the Bible Answer Man appeals to "historic Christianity" in understanding what the Bible means, that's typically a good thing. He's appealing to Sacred Tradition and agreeing with the Church. It's Eupocrisy in action!

However, in those places where Protestantism attempts to reject Catholic Sacred Tradition, the narrative suddenly and wrenchingly changes. Suddenly, the demand is made for nothing less than an explicit proof text from the Bible. It works like this:
 
  1. If a thing is condemned by the Church but permitted by the Protestant (say, gay marriage), the demand is for an explicit text forbidding it. ("Show me where Jesus said one word about not allowing gay marriage! That's just the Church imposing its purely human ideas on what Jesus came to say.") 
  1. Conversely, if a thing is allowed by the Church but condemned by the Protestant, the demand is for an explicit text commanding it. ("Where in the Bible do you find anyone asking us to pray to dead people? That's just the Church imposing it's purely human ideas on what Jesus came to say.")
Note how the terms of the argument shift to suit the "Heads I win, tails the Church loses" agenda. It's no longer good enough to say (as the Protestant generally does when, for instance, arguing for the divinity of the Holy Spirit), "Here are biblical passages which, taken together, point to the reality that the Holy Spirit is a Divine Person even though there is no text that says 'The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity.'"

No, arguing from such obvious implication is out the window. In many circles, even a nearly algebraic piece of logic like
 
  1. Jesus is God.
  2. Mary is His Mother.
  3. Therefore, Mary is the Mother of God.
 . . . gets rejected as "inbred reasoning" since Catholics can't produce the Bible verse that says explicitly, "Mary is the Mother of God." Suddenly, only direct, explicit testimony and instruction in legally watertight language will do.
 
How this works on the ground can be seen everywhere. The Protestant who wants to permit abortion points out that there is no unequivocal commandment in either the Old or New Testament saying, "You shall not have an abortion," and evinces absolutely no interest in how the texts we do have ("You shall not murder," for instance) have been universally read by the Church from the earliest times. Likewise, the Protestant who dogmatically rejects, say, prayer to the saints simply ignores you if you point to the fact that Scripture shows us that the dead (like Moses on the Mount of Transfiguration) are aware of what's happening on earth, that we are told that "we shall be like Christ" (who intercedes for us), that the Body of Christ is One (not split in two by death), and that the early Church understood all this to imply that we can ask prayers of the dead just as we ask them of the living.

As remote as the flaky pro-choice Episcopalian and the starchy Bible-thumping Fundamentalist preacher may seem to be from each other, they share a deep commonality in the way they reject whatever aspect of Catholic teaching they dislike. From liberal to conservative, the argument proceeds: "Unless the Bible explicitly commands what I forbid or forbids what I want to do, then the Catholic teaching I dislike is 'unbiblical.'" (Of course, the word "Bible" is not unbiblical -- even though it also never appears in Scripture -- because the word "Bible" is a fragment of extra-biblical Christian tradition generally acceptable to Protestants.)

Indeed all the various forms of Protestantism have this (and only this) one feature in common. They may differ on Mary or baptism or the divinity of Jesus or even the existence of God (if you include Unitarians as a particularly robust form of Protestantism that has jettisoned more of Catholic teaching than its predecessors). But they all agree on erecting semi-permeable membranes in which some (but not all) elements of Sacred Tradition are allowed through (different bits for different groups).
 
Those elements that are allowed through are called "the witness of historic Christianity" or "the clear implication of Scripture" or "the obviously reasonable position." Those not allowed through are called "human tradition" or "myths" or "the unbiblical teachings of Rome" or "relics of patriarchy" or "ancient superstition" (even when they are the obvious testimony and practice of all the apostolic communions in the world since the beginning of the Church.) Finally, to the filtered-in elements of real apostolic theological and moral teaching are stapled sundry human traditions like sola scriptura or some theory about predestinarianism or the "perspicuity of Scripture" or the need to speak in tongues or (in the past) the curse on Canaan as a biblical basis for American chattel slavery or (more recently) the glories of homosexuality or abortion.


Of course, as history goes on and at least some sectors in Protestantism allow the centrifugal force of Private Judgment to move them further and further from both Sacred Tradition and (inevitably, given the logic) Sacred Scripture as well, you reach a point where appeals to Scripture as an authority in debate don't matter, since Scripture is, after all, simply the written aspect of Tradition. Sooner or later, it occurs to people trending away from acceptance of Apostolic Tradition to ask, "If I've rejected everything else the Church says, why should I care about its 'holy' writings? I can find a hundred German theologians who say of the supposed 'word of God' what I've been saying of 'Sacred Tradition' all along."

For the present, many (graying) Evangelicals still retain a deep reverence for the sacred writings of Holy Church (though there are some signs that the itch to deconstruct Scripture will wreak enormous damage among those who come to clearly face the choice between the pole in Protestantism that seeks the Apostolic Tradition and the pole that seeks to keep deconstructing until nothing, including Scripture, is left).

For those still in this betwixt-and-between stage, who reverence Scripture and have this conflicted grasp of an Apostolic Tradition coming to them through a semi-permeable membrane, what is needed is a paradigm shift: the realization first of the shell game that is played in order to filter out Catholic traditions according to the preferences of the particular Protestant tradition one adheres to and, second, a willingness to acknowledge the possibility that when this is honestly done, it will be found that no Catholic doctrine -- none whatsoever --actually contradicts Scripture and that all that is essential in Scripture is also essential in Catholic teaching.
 
That's a terrifying prospect if one has accepted any of the various myths by which the sundry Protestantisms justify the rejection of whichever bits of Catholic teaching they reject. All the myths -- ranging from "I listen only to the Bible alone and not to the traditions of men!" to "I accept Tradition within reason, except that church tradition is never accepted as equal in authority to canonical Scripture; it is always subject to revision provided a scriptural basis can be found" -- are equally doomed if that turns out to be so, which is why those committed to the sundry Protestant schemas require not new information but an alteration of the will: a willingness to consider the possibility that there is no conflict between Catholic Tradition and Scripture and that every apparent conflict is just that -- apparent and not real.
 
Once that possibility is squarely faced and accepted, the argument for receiving all of Sacred Tradition rather than simply the bits you like can naturally follow in a rather reasonable way. But first, the membrane(s) must go.


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; History; Theology
KEYWORDS: bible; catholic; protestant; scripture; tradition
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1 posted on 07/21/2009 10:09:02 AM PDT by NYer
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To: Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; nickcarraway; Romulus; ...

Ping!


2 posted on 07/21/2009 10:11:54 AM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: NYer
What a bunch of rubbish concerning the marriage bit.
3 posted on 07/21/2009 10:15:25 AM PDT by In veno, veritas (Please identify my Ad Hominem attacks. I should be debating ideas.)
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To: Petronski; kosta50

Great article!


4 posted on 07/21/2009 10:17:52 AM PDT by Cronos (Ceterum censeo, Mecca et Medina delendae sunt + Jindal 2K12)
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To: NYer

The thing is, Scripture is NOT UNCLEAR about what marriage is. Check out Matthew 19

1When Jesus had finished saying these things, he left Galilee and went into the region of Judea to the other side of the Jordan. 2Large crowds followed him, and he healed them there.
3Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

4”Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’[a] 5and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’[b]? 6So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.”

7”Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

8Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. 9I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery.”


5 posted on 07/21/2009 10:29:39 AM PDT by chesley ("Hate" -- You wouldn't understand; it's a leftist thing)
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To: NYer

Thanks for the post. I found it to be well written and insightful. I am Protestant, there are some aspects of Catholicism that I theologically disagree with. ( I mean no offense by this - I am just trying to speak truthfully.) However, this article forces me to examine myself and my faith - and that is a good thing. Thanks for an excellent post.-—JM


6 posted on 07/21/2009 10:31:45 AM PDT by Jubal Madison (Sic Semper Tyrannis)
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To: NYer

That’s why orthodox Lutherans do not claim the mantle of “protestant” but firmly assert that they are part of the Church, catholic.


7 posted on 07/21/2009 10:32:57 AM PDT by Cletus.D.Yokel (Palin shrugged.)
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To: NYer
Nowhere does Scripture spell out that the Holy Spirit is a person, much less the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, consubstantial with the Father and the Son.

Why is "He" referred to as a "he" in the Greek throughout the NT then? Why can "He" be grieved, quenched, lied to, etc.? Why does I John 5:7 - which IS a genuine part of Scripture, btw - say that these three are one, which certainly suggests ontological unity?

8 posted on 07/21/2009 10:34:45 AM PDT by Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus (We bury Democrats face down so that when they scratch, they get closer to home.)
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To: NYer

Is there a purpose for such a scatter-shot assault on a sister denomination?
Randomly picking-and-choosing weak points in assorted philosophies, then lumping those cumulative flaws as representative of the overarching term, is disingenuous rhetoric bent on wholesale destruction, not clarification and unity unto a greater purpose.


9 posted on 07/21/2009 10:35:05 AM PDT by ctdonath2 (John Galt was exiled.)
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To: NYer

And further, it is not right to lump in liberal “Protestants”, along with the more conservative. AFter all, the Catholic Church also has its social gospel advocates, its gay advocates, etc. The Church rejects their ideas? So do conservative Protestans.

For me, I can’t become a Catholic, nor even consider it, as long as that”Mary, the Mother of God” nonsense exists. Mary was a human woman, created by God, not His mother. She was, however the mother of the man, Jesus.


10 posted on 07/21/2009 10:36:08 AM PDT by chesley ("Hate" -- You wouldn't understand; it's a leftist thing)
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To: chesley
The thing is, Scripture is NOT UNCLEAR about what marriage is. Check out Matthew 19

That's just it - the only people who think this article is on target are those who aren't familiar enough with the Bible to see that each of these "traditions" have a pre-existing Scriptural basis. I hate to say it, but we live in a day and age where if it ain't John 3:16, nobody's heard of it.

11 posted on 07/21/2009 10:36:52 AM PDT by Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus (We bury Democrats face down so that when they scratch, they get closer to home.)
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To: Cletus.D.Yokel

The author should recognize that it was Martin Luther - and his translation of the Holy Bible - that allowed him to know so much about both the Catholic and Protestant traditions and from whence they came.


12 posted on 07/21/2009 10:39:35 AM PDT by jyoders19
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To: Jubal Madison

Thank you!


13 posted on 07/21/2009 10:43:35 AM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: Cletus.D.Yokel
That’s why orthodox Lutherans do not claim the mantle of “protestant” but firmly assert that they are part of the Church, catholic.

Saying it doesn't make it so.

14 posted on 07/21/2009 10:57:08 AM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: chesley
For me, I can’t become a Catholic, nor even consider it, as long as that”Mary, the Mother of God” nonsense exists. Mary was a human woman, created by God, not His mother. She was, however the mother of the man, Jesus.

Ah, the old Theotokos controversy. I wonder if you have read about the fights that happened in the Church in the 3rd - 5th century over that very term, "mother of God".

Many argued, like you do that Mary was just the mother of the MAN Jesus, not the Mother of God (which seemed to them, like it seems to you as if exalting Mary over God -- it doesn't, btw, but more about that in a minute)

However, let's examine a few things. You do agree that Jesus was wholly man and wholly God? That's a basic orthodox belief.

We are not like the Arians who state that Jesus was a lesser God or that He was created by God, or that he was a man who was "adopted" by God or that he was only God and the mantle of humanity was just a hoax.

you don't believe any of those, do you? you, I presume, believe in the orthodox belief of Him being completely God (from before time, uncreated, of one being, substance, homousis with the Father -- God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made) and yes also completely man.

you do believe that there two "natures" were inseparable, indivisable etc.

your point about "Mary was a human woman, created by God," -- is what we Catholics believe in too.

however, we say she was the holder of the womb in which Jesus came from -- and Jesus was wholly man and wholly God. Hence she was the Mother of God, Theotokos. She was not the "creator" of God, just like our mothers didn't "create" us, but they gave birth to us. In the same way Mary was the Mother of God, not His creator, not His equal in any way.

As the vessel in which Christ came into the world, she is worthy of respect, do you not believe that?
15 posted on 07/21/2009 11:08:07 AM PDT by Cronos (Ceterum censeo, Mecca et Medina delendae sunt + Jindal 2K12)
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To: Cletus.D.Yokel

As I believe do Anglicans and Episcopalians, or at least the high church varieties of those faiths.


16 posted on 07/21/2009 11:08:52 AM PDT by Sherman Logan (Perception wins all the battles, reality wins all the wars)
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To: jyoders19
The author should recognize that it was Martin Luther - and his translation of the Holy Bible - that allowed him to know so much about both the Catholic and Protestant traditions and from whence they came.

Where do you get that?? Martin Luther was not the first to translate The Bible from it's original languages (it was originally in Hebrew and Koine Greek) -- that honor goes to the compilers of the Latin Vulgate translation.

The Church was perhaps too over-zealous to prevent mis-translations of The Bible into the new languages like German, English etc (remember that English wasn't standardised until well past Shakespeare's day).

Luther didn't open The Bible to let people know about tradition -- people read Latin far more easily in those days --- in the middle ages to be educated, you KNEW latin. Most people were illerate hence the passion plays teaching them about Christ and The Bible.
17 posted on 07/21/2009 11:11:39 AM PDT by Cronos (Ceterum censeo, Mecca et Medina delendae sunt + Jindal 2K12)
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To: NYer
As remote as the flaky pro-choice Episcopalian and the starchy Bible-thumping Fundamentalist preacher may seem to be from each other, they share a deep commonality in the way they reject whatever aspect of Catholic teaching they dislike.

They use these same methods to reject each others' doctrines when desired. It's not aimed specifically at the Church.

It's all really very simple. One has two choices in establishing doctrine:

1. Establish an infallible source of doctrine that can promulgate dogma that cannot be disputed. That's what Catholicism has done.

2. Allow each person to choose what he will believe, or what stress he will put on different parts of the Bible, tradition, etc. In practice that is what Protestantism has done, as any believer who becomes unhappy with the doctrine of his church can just shop around till he finds one that suits. Not that most Protestant churches are particularly interested in doctrine anymore.

There really is no third choice, short of the return of Christ visibly.

18 posted on 07/21/2009 11:15:26 AM PDT by Sherman Logan (Perception wins all the battles, reality wins all the wars)
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To: NYer

PING! for later reading/debating


19 posted on 07/21/2009 11:23:32 AM PDT by Ignatz (Helping others to be more like me since 1960!)
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To: Cronos
You are correct. my beliefs are orthodox. I can't make that last leap of logic to her being the mother of God, though.

Of course she deserves respect, but as a woman who followed God to the best of her ability and as God granted her Grace. But I don't need a meadiatrix between me and God, I already have Christ. Is He not sufficient?

20 posted on 07/21/2009 11:31:37 AM PDT by chesley ("Hate" -- You wouldn't understand; it's a leftist thing)
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To: Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus

I’m not quite sure, but I think that we are in agreement.


21 posted on 07/21/2009 11:33:58 AM PDT by chesley ("Hate" -- You wouldn't understand; it's a leftist thing)
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To: ctdonath2
Is there a purpose for such a scatter-shot assault on a sister denomination?

I am not armed. Where do you find disagreement with the article?

22 posted on 07/21/2009 11:48:17 AM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: NYer

I find disagreement with its random grabbing of objectionable points from different denominations, then implicitly lumping them all together to smear the totality of “Protestantism”. Much of what is criticized is NOT the norm across the umbrella philosophy, so it is disingenuous to portray isolated flaws as such.


23 posted on 07/21/2009 12:10:27 PM PDT by ctdonath2 (John Galt was exiled.)
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To: chesley
I’m not quite sure, but I think that we are in agreement.

We certainly are on the issue of Mary as theotokos and mediatrix (or her NOT being these things, I should say).

24 posted on 07/21/2009 12:10:47 PM PDT by Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus (We bury Democrats face down so that when they scratch, they get closer to home.)
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To: Cronos

Yes.

Quite good.


25 posted on 07/21/2009 12:13:28 PM PDT by Petronski (In Germany they came first for the Communists, And I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist...)
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To: ctdonath2
This is unfortunately all too common. "Protestantism" is most often defined as "not Catholic/Orthodox" and then it provides such a wide range of things to deal with that it becomes virtually impossible to have a rational conversation about it. It's rather disingenuous to use issues such as gay marriage and abortion...issues which historical Protestantism has always steadfastly spoken against...are ascribed to Protestantism even though those churches are most assuredly NOT Protestant by any definition other than the aforementioned flawed definition.

The issue is one of definition, and the premise from which this article argues is fundamentally flawed.

26 posted on 07/21/2009 12:20:56 PM PDT by Frumanchu (God's justice does not demand second chances)
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To: NYer

Interesting...


27 posted on 07/21/2009 12:26:23 PM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: NYer

We must not forget we must: “Study to shew ourselves approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)

As I have understood it the statement “must be the husband of one wife” was written to those that desired to be an elder or deacon in the church, (that is church leaders) Titus 1:1:7. (But I believe,in light of other scriptures, it includes us all).

As to our wives: We are commanded; “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it;(Eph. 5:25) And no man has done that!

And; “So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.” (Eph. 5:28)

“Nevertheless let everyone of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.” (Eph. 5:33)

As I understand the word of God we are to pray our God our Father in heaven: “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For their is one God, and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus;” (1 Timothy 2:3-5)

Also Remember: “For He (God) hath made Him (Jesus) to be made sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Cor. 5:21)

And last: “But when the fullness of time of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the curse of the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts crying, Abba, Father.” (Gal. 4:4-6)


28 posted on 07/21/2009 12:31:20 PM PDT by LetMarch (If a man knows the right way to live, and does not live it, there is no greater coward. (Anonyous)
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To: NYer
No, arguing from such obvious implication is out the window. In many circles, even a nearly algebraic piece of logic like

1.Jesus is God.
2.Mary is His Mother.
3.Therefore, Mary is the Mother of God.

. . . gets rejected as "inbred reasoning" since Catholics can't produce the Bible verse that says explicitly, "Mary is the Mother of God." Suddenly, only direct, explicit testimony and instruction in legally watertight language will do.

That's an incredibly poor example since it oversimplifies the argument by completely ignoring the issue of Christ's having both a fully human and fully divine nature in the question of Mary's relationship to Him, which issue is a core component of this area of disagreement.

29 posted on 07/21/2009 12:39:33 PM PDT by Frumanchu (God's justice does not demand second chances)
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To: NYer

Private interpretation of the bible directly led to the “living document” approach to the Constitution.


30 posted on 07/21/2009 12:56:26 PM PDT by TASMANIANRED (TAZ:Untamed, Unpredictable, Uninhibited.)
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To: NYer
Even if no one is out there, just wander around a bit and you'll definitely find someone (Cain, Gn 4:16-17).

If you Catholics want to ridicule Protestants for their inconsistency on Sacred Tradition (and yes, they are inconsistent), fine. But must you ridicule the Word of G-d in order to do this?

What is this deep-seated aversion to the Bible? Where does it come from? Does it come from the Protestant Reformation? Is it a reaction to the sola scriptura of Protestantism? "The Prots think too highly of the Bible, so we'll tear it down?" What good is it of boasting of how your church "canonized" the Bible (it didn't) if you're so hostile to it that you make fun of it? Shame on you.

Cain did not "wander around" till he found a wife. He married his sister. His twin sister. The one who was born along with him in the Garden of Eden before the First Sin had even been committed. This was one of the things Cain and Abel quarreled over. Cain was born with a twin sister; Abel was born with two "triplet" sisters. Cain said since he was the firstborn they should marry him. Abel said they were born with him so they were his.

Now, of course, if you go reading the bare text of Genesis you won't find any of this. You know why? Because it's Sacred Tradition. You Catholics know what that is, right? You're always shooting off your bazoos about how you believe in "Tradition." But in actuality you're the heirs of the first Protestants--the original chr*stians who rejected the immemorial Sacred Tradition that had been handed down from the time of Mt. Sinai. This means both that you're every bit as inconsistent about Tradition as Protestants are, and that you're hypocrites because you claim to defend Tradition but you're actually quite ignorant of it.

I'm aware that most Catholics believe Cain and Abel are mythology. Believe me, I need no convincing whatsoever.

It's one reason I left your irreverent Church.

31 posted on 07/21/2009 12:58:39 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Be`ever haYarden be'Eretz Mo'av; ho'iyl Mosheh be'er 'et-haTorah hazo't le'mor.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

ZC,

A few says ago I asked you if you knew anything about any good verse-by-verse commentaries on Genesis. I mentioned Watke’s. Do you have any suggestions?


32 posted on 07/21/2009 1:11:17 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: vladimir998
A few says ago I asked you if you knew anything about any good verse-by-verse commentaries on Genesis. I mentioned Watke’s. Do you have any suggestions?

Yes, and I answered you on the thread. I mentioned Rashi, RaMBa"N, Hirsch, 'Aryeh Kaplan, and the Stone Chumash and gave you a link to ArtScroll. Didn't you see it?

33 posted on 07/21/2009 1:16:06 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Be`ever haYarden be'Eretz Mo'av; ho'iyl Mosheh be'er 'et-haTorah hazo't le'mor.)
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To: All

The author is a moron and has never read the scriptures. They are very clear in Jesus’ own words when responding to a question about divorce - by an earlier would-be Obama supporter - Jewish religious leader.. This author is clearly another fake that has the koran (false prophecy of demon worshiper - mohammid) beneath his pillow and a picture of Barack on the wall.


34 posted on 07/21/2009 2:12:11 PM PDT by Africando
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To: Zionist Conspirator

No, sorry, I didn’t see it. In a few days - when I’m finally home from vacation - I’ll have to check it. Sorry about that.


35 posted on 07/21/2009 2:36:44 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: Jubal Madison
Thanks for the post. I found it to be well written and insightful. I am Protestant, there are some aspects of Catholicism that I theologically disagree with. ( I mean no offense by this - I am just trying to speak truthfully.) However, this article forces me to examine myself and my faith - and that is a good thing. Thanks for an excellent post.-—JM

Thank you for your generous reading of the article. God bless.
36 posted on 07/21/2009 2:40:19 PM PDT by bdeaner (The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? (1 Cor. 10:16))
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To: NYer

Shea nails it again! Can’t wait to read his new book on Mariology. Thanks for the post!


37 posted on 07/21/2009 2:49:42 PM PDT by bdeaner (The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? (1 Cor. 10:16))
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To: Zionist Conspirator
The article neither ridicules Protestants nor Scripture.

I'm aware that most Catholics believe Cain and Abel are mythology.

Holy Scripture is not a text book. It matters not whether the world was made in 6 days (as measured in our time) or 6 million. Are the six days of creation really literal twenty-four-hour periods or a symbol of divine work, however long it took? Did Jesus really turn bread and wine into his body and blood, or is it just a figure? Did a great red dragon really sweep a third of the stars out of heaven with his tail, or does that symbolize something else? Are these symbols or miracles? We must pay attention to the faith and to try to learn how language was used at the time, in the tongues and cultures of the Bible, and then say to ourselves, "What did the author most likely intend when he said this?"

That is the point of this article.

38 posted on 07/21/2009 3:44:25 PM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: ctdonath2
I find disagreement with its random grabbing of objectionable points from different denominations, then implicitly lumping them all together to smear the totality of “Protestantism”

Is there to be only one Church or many? According to Scripture, Christ wanted us to be one (John 17:22-23). We are all as a Church to be of one mind and to think the same (Philippians 2:2; Romans 15:5). There is only to be one "faith" (Ephesians 4:3-6), not many. For the Church is Christ's Body and Christ only had one Body, not many. Also, since the Church is Christ's Bride (Ephesians 5:29), can Christ be married to more than one wife (essentially a spiritual form of the the sin of polygamy)? No, Christ can only have one wife (i.e., one Church, not many).

39 posted on 07/21/2009 3:53:12 PM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: LetMarch

Thank you for posting those beautiful quotes from scripture. What the author is trying to help us understand, though, is that ‘sola scriptura’ has led us into a time in which the ‘absence’ of definitive admonitions against gay marriage, abortion, ivf, etc. has resulted in christian’s interpreting scripture to suit their personal views. He then directs our attention to Tradition (with a big T), which many of the protestant churches actually apply to support their arguments against that which is not clearly expressed in the bible. The Catholic Church has always upheld Tradition since it was founded by Jesus Christ Himself.


40 posted on 07/21/2009 4:02:58 PM PDT by NYer ("One Who Prays Is Not Afraid; One Who Prays Is Never Alone"- Benedict XVI)
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To: NYer
Holy Scripture is not a text book. It matters not whether the world was made in 6 days (as measured in our time) or 6 million. Are the six days of creation really literal twenty-four-hour periods or a symbol of divine work, however long it took? Did Jesus really turn bread and wine into his body and blood, or is it just a figure? Did a great red dragon really sweep a third of the stars out of heaven with his tail, or does that symbolize something else? Are these symbols or miracles? We must pay attention to the faith and to try to learn how language was used at the time, in the tongues and cultures of the Bible, and then say to ourselves, "What did the author most likely intend when he said this?"

That is the point of this article.

I am well aware of your detestably low view of the Word of G-d (apparently there's no difference between Maronites and Latins in that regard). Though I give you props for consistency in classifying transubstantiation along with all the other alleged fables that never really happened. Most Catholics hypocritically insist on that one while rejecting everything else.

But you are missing the point. The alleged purpose of the article is to defend Sacred Tradition (by pointing out the inconsistency of Protestants). I defended genuine Sacred Tradition by pointing out that that Tradition is that Cain married his twin sister (and that this was a cause of friction between Cain and Abel). Your post quoted above says not a word about Tradition. It is nothing but the most modernistic, anti-Traditional secular "modern scholarship." Is this what Catholics now mean by Tradition?

Where do your church fathers say "we must be aware of the imagery of ancient cultures" in their Biblical commentaries? They don't. You got that from the historical criticism created by liberal Lutherans in the nineteenth century. That, apparently, is your "tradition."

I informed you of the immemorial Oral Tradition about Cain and Abel. You reject it and fall back on modern scholarship. Who is the "protestant" here?

I miss wideawake, who apparently is no longer with us.

41 posted on 07/21/2009 4:57:15 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Be`ever haYarden be'Eretz Mo'av; ho'iyl Mosheh be'er 'et-haTorah hazo't le'mor.)
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To: ctdonath2; NYer
I find disagreement with its random grabbing of objectionable points from different denominations, then implicitly lumping them all together to smear the totality of “Protestantism”. Much of what is criticized is NOT the norm across the umbrella philosophy, so it is disingenuous to portray isolated flaws as such.

I think the point of the article is that once you reject the infallibility of the teaching authority of the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, you hit a slippery slope that opens the Bible to multiple interpretations and actually, taken to its logical conclusion, undermines the credibility of the Bible's authority -- which was granted through canonization by the early Church.
42 posted on 07/21/2009 8:02:25 PM PDT by bdeaner (The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? (1 Cor. 10:16))
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To: Jubal Madison

God bless you, JM!


43 posted on 07/21/2009 8:23:27 PM PDT by Melian ("An unexamined life is not worth living." ~Socrates)
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To: NYer

This is one of the most thick-headed and ignorant screeds that I can ever recall reading here.

For example, everything that one could possibly want to know about marriage has been in the Hebrew scriptures for three and a half millenia; how did the author miss it? Or is he simply looking for a spat on a dull day?


44 posted on 07/21/2009 8:32:09 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (The beginning of the O'Bummer administration looks a lot like the end of the Nixon administration)
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To: Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus
"Why is "He" referred to as a "he" in the Greek throughout the NT then? Why can "He" be grieved, quenched, lied to, etc.? Why does I John 5:7 - which IS a genuine part of Scripture, btw - say that these three are one, which certainly suggests ontological unity?"

Why do you insist on asking such tough questions ;o)

45 posted on 07/21/2009 8:36:20 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (The beginning of the O'Bummer administration looks a lot like the end of the Nixon administration)
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To: chesley

“For me, I can’t become a Catholic, nor even consider it, as long as that ‘Mary, the Mother of God’ nonsense exists.”

May I make a suggestion? The crux of Catholicism is the Eucharist. If you were to study early translations of the Gospels, the historical record of the early Church, and other historical writings, and form an educated opinion of the Holy Eucharist, you might find that concerns about Mary’s status are put in perspective.

If Catholics are right about the Eucharist, then we’re right about everything. Find out what we really believe about the Eucharist and the rationale for those beliefs, before you decide.


46 posted on 07/21/2009 8:39:07 PM PDT by Melian ("An unexamined life is not worth living." ~Socrates)
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To: chesley
"I already have Christ. Is He not sufficient?"

If not we are all doomed!

1Ti 2:5 "For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus"
Those that seek another will not join us at the wedding feast.
47 posted on 07/21/2009 8:55:51 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (The beginning of the O'Bummer administration looks a lot like the end of the Nixon administration)
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To: Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus

And why did the God head in the beginning say let us create man in our image? And through out the bible it is required a wittiness of two or more to confirm a fact if God requires it of us then it is a requirement of Himselves.


48 posted on 07/22/2009 12:45:44 AM PDT by guitarplayer1953 (Warning: Some words may be misspelled/ You will get over it / Klingon is my 1st language)
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To: chesley
You are correct. my beliefs are orthodox. I can't make that last leap of logic to her being the mother of God, though.

There is no leap of logic --
1. you agree that she was the mother of Jesus Christ, correct?

2. You do agree that Jesus Christ is God, wholly God and wholly Man -- two natures complete and intertwined in the one person. Right?

Ergo, she was the mother of God - Jesus Christ, not the mother of God the Father, the other part of the Godhead.

Note -- that does NOT mean that she was the creator of God, that does NOT mean that she was anything but inferior to God, that does NOT mean that she was not a creature (created by God).

Finally, "But I don't need a meadiatrix between me and God, I already have Christ. Is He not sufficient? " --> The Church doesn't say that you have to pray to Mary -- we don't pray to her. We just respect her for his position as the vessel for Christ to come into the world. Christ IS sufficient, we just respect Mary as a mother figure. Remember -- The Church does not say go out and pray to Mary, don't pray to Christ. We ask Mary to pray FOR us...and we also pray to Christ --> I don't mind other people praying for me, so why not have Mary doing that too?
49 posted on 07/22/2009 5:16:22 AM PDT by Cronos (Ceterum censeo, Mecca et Medina delendae sunt + Jindal 2K12)
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To: Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus

so, you would call her Christokos? Mother of Christ?


50 posted on 07/22/2009 5:17:43 AM PDT by Cronos (Ceterum censeo, Mecca et Medina delendae sunt + Jindal 2K12)
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