Skip to comments.In Christ Alone (Happy reformation day)
Posted on 10/31/2010 11:59:22 AM PDT by RnMomof7
In Christ Alone lyrics
Songwriters: Getty, Julian Keith; Townend, Stuart Richard;
In Christ alone my hope is found He is my light, my strength, my song This Cornerstone, this solid ground Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace When fears are stilled, when strivings cease My Comforter, my All in All Here in the love of Christ I stand
In Christ alone, who took on flesh Fullness of God in helpless Babe This gift of love and righteousness Scorned by the ones He came to save
?Til on that cross as Jesus died The wrath of God was satisfied For every sin on Him was laid Here in the death of Christ I live, I live
There in the ground His body lay Light of the world by darkness slain Then bursting forth in glorious Day Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory Sin?s curse has lost its grip on me For I am His and He is mine Bought with the precious blood of Christ
I know you are busy, and this is true, but Rome teaches that believers are accounted to have "truly merited eternal life" by those very works which have been done in God. And that eternal life is both a gift as well as reward to their good works and merits, (Trent, Chapter XVI; The Sixth Session Decree on justification, p. 43; cf. Canon 32, 1547) that believers merit graces needed for the attainment of eternal life. (Catechism of the Catholic church, Part 3, Life in Christ, Merit, 2010)
Thus while works of the law are disallowed as salvific, Rome attributes salvific merit to works of faith. This implies that the reason for the use of the term works of the law in such places as Romans 4 is to place such in contrast to works of faith. However, other texts do not specify works of the law, but broadly refers to works, which it sets in contrast to faith. And the law being holy just and good, (Rm. 7:12) if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law, (Gal. 3:21) while the righteousness of the law is never abrogated. (Rm. 8:4)
Thus the problem is not with the manner of righteousness which the law upholds, but the manner of attaining it, which is not by any manner of merit of law-keeping, but by recognizing yourself as a law breaker and trusting in the mercy of God in Christ to save you by his blood, and which faith is imputed for righteousness. To be sure, the only manner of faith which is salvific is that which is of a confessional quality, meaning it confesses Jesus as the Lord in word and deed, with baptism being the first official expression of that faith.
The key difference as I see it between this and what Catholicism teaches is that it is not by any merit of works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, (Titus 3:5) not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. (2Tim. 1:9) And while Roman Catholicism seeks to make eternal life a gift as well as a merited reward, rendered to their good works and merits, it is either one or the other.
Do we Catholics love the Protestants? We love you all, and we hate your theology because your theology is false and leads you away from the Holy Church, the pillar and foundation of truth. How can we, as we love you, not hate that?
You seem to be one who is diligent in your faith, and according to esteem of truth one can understand the mutual feeling. Yet your statement cannot necessarily say is that Protestant theology leads one to eternal damnation, as Rome overall recognizes that those separated Churches and Communities as such such as who honor Sacred Scripture, taking it as a norm of belief and a pattern of life, and who show a sincere zeal,.. in some real way they are joined with us in the Holy Spirit, for to them too He gives His gifts and graces whereby He is operative among them with His sanctifying power, also stating. For the Spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as means of salvation.
But what your statement implies is that Catholicism manifests a greater degree of grace, which is her stance, while the multitudes of those who left Catholicism for Evangelical churches (which has far more been the case than the opposite), testifies otherwise. To be continued..
As to these Mary issues, I agree that the scripture is not alone sufficient to teach about her lifelong sinlessness and virginity; we don't teach that from the Bible but rather from the Holy Tradition whence the entire knowledge of Mary and her life comes.
Evangelical Christians largely affirm the canon of Rome and core Scripture truths both agree on, but I hope you can also understand that evangelicals typically experienced a dramatic transformation due to trust the gospel of grace preached from the Scriptures, after having been in churches where it was not really preached nor the Bible was emphasized. Due to that and their resultant Scripture and relationship centered faith they are alarmed at doctrines which lack Scriptural warrant and militate against it (such as praying to departed saints) and which much depend upon tradition and the infallible magisterium.
The standard of the Sermon of the Mount, and generally the standard of divine perfection in Matthew 5:48 applies to Catholics. In fact it applies to everyone, the Protestant just think they can avoid applying it to thmselves through their sleazy "faith alone" maneuvre.
Matthew 5:48 certainly does apply to everyone, and while it is easy to broad brush evangelical faith, the reformers overall did not preach, easy believism, but held that a faith which is salvific is one which shows forth fruit fit for repentance and endures. Recently no less a figure then R.C. Sproul preached, Since our righteousness proceeds from our justification, which is based upon the righteousness of Christ alone, we must never be deluded into thinking that our works of righteousness have any merit of their own. Yet as Protestants, zealously maintaining our doctrine of justification by faith alone, we must be ever mindful that the justification which is by faith alone is never by a faith that is alone. True faith is a faith that manifests itself in righteousness exceeding that of the Pharisees and the scribes, for it is concerned with the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy.
The issue is what perfection means, and its attainment. What the Bible most clearly teaches is that true believers, for which faith is not a one-time deal, are declared righteous and thus practice righteousness. While they do not attain unto complete perfection, as Christ is perfect, they are not only positionally made to sit together , and heavenly places in Christ Jesus, (Eph. 2:6) but upon death they shall ever be with the Lord, (1Thes. 4:17; 1Cor. 15; 2Cor. 5:6-8) and will be made like Him when He appears, (1Jn. 3:2) but who show yet judge the quality of their works. (1Cor. 3:8-15; 2Cor. 5:9-11) More could be said, but I am trying to be brief
“You say in this post, “I have never trashed Scripture” and in the same one you continue to cast doubt that anybody can have a true version of the Word of God.”
There is actually some debate with Catholicism today over the Traditional position on inerrancy, expressed in such statements as the encyclical letter “Providentissimus Deus” (124-125) by Pope Leo XIII (1893), and “Spiritus Paraclitus” by Pope Benedict XV (1914-1922) and the 1943 encyclical “Divino Afflante Spiritu” by Pope Pius XII (1943) which affirmed full inerrancy (in the original mss i assume), and the limited inerrancy position derived from “Dei Verbum” of the Second Vatican Council.
The link to a page below , while being to a liberal site which i oppose in many things, on this issue presents a concise representation of quotes. http://www.religioustolerance.org/inerran1.htm
The modern RC scholarship i have seen definitely lists strongly to port in its interpretive foundation, against which is this well written protest: http://www.ewtn.com/library/THEOLOGY/SEMINAR.htm
Of course,but there are still boundless things we can do in a lifespan within our human capacity in that environment that we have freedom to do.
In any even a minuscule group or society, the pecking order established limits to liberty
We still can freely ignore the limits set by the pecking order if we want to
Are you asking why would God be love? You have to excuse my Italianess of thinking ,dear brother :)
I agree wholly. We are not bound by the Jewish legalisms. When they accord with the natural law we retain them, e.g. we retain and in fact expand (in the sense of the Sermon on the Mount) the Ten Commandments. The dietetic laws, and this tiny literalism that you note, and the entire spirit of legalism we reject.
That freedom is not boundless, but conditioned by consequences that follow such a rebellion.
The pecking order is ever changing and not fixed and neither is those who rebel against the pecking order fixed,it's all boundless
That both are miracuous acts of similar nature that Jesus performed.
Infancy Gospel of James, a fraudulent work
It accuratley reflects the belief extant in 2c. Why should I instead take the beliefs of 20c? Looking for fraud, look at it among the shysters of Protestantism.
"Necessary for salvation" is itself a sleazy Protestant "dodge" invented in order to remove faith from people's lives. A Catholic believer would never ask that. According to Catholic belief, one can live a life of dissipation, wake up, confess it, take the Holy Eucharist and die a saved man. That one did "everything necessary" for salvation. According to Protestant belief, even less, he only has to walk up to a minister no one appointed sqeeze out a tear and profess something with Jesus Christ personal Lord and savior in it, and bingo, done, and he does not even have to stay away from sin afterwards. Mind you, I am not diparaging late life conversions, but I am disparaging that idea of minimalism. The Protestant project has always been, -- "what part of the Body of Christ can we amputate and still call ourselves Christians?"
A Catholic believer believes the entire faith, Christ, and Mary, and the saints, and everything. He knows the faith from the source of that knowledge, the Church that preserved it. That doesn't mean there are no degrees of importance, but the desire is to get it in full as best is possible, not to get something easy, preferably in a pill form and rush off to work. Our faith is a building with interlocking parts. Your faith is a stake in the ground where the building is supposed to stand. The building itself is never there.
when it comes to your phrase, I believe in One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, which is from the Nicene rather than the Apostles Creed, you mean to say that you believe in the Church similarly to the way you believe in God. [...] But the Creed does not say that. [...] I believe in the holy Christian/Catholic Church just as I believe in the Communion of Saints, just as I believe in the forgiveness of sins, just as I believe in the resurrection of the body, just as I believe in the life everlasting. I can see none of them. They are not tangible, subject to discovery by my natural senses.
And God is (now that Christ is in Heaven) tangible to our senses? The Church is not God. It is someone who preserved for me the knowledge of God. The Church, moreover, is the visible Church it has books open to my senses, buildings, clergy, bells and smells, all these are visibly present to give me Christianity. God became tangible, vulnerable flesh because He wanted to. God gave us a visible Church because He wanted to. I take her and I believe her witness. You can take her too.
You have, in effect, driven millions away from the Creed in your arrogance
The Western Church does bear the blame for the scandal and the tragedy of Protestantism, but believing the Holy Scripture as written and the Creed as formulated is not part of the blame. Also, we allowed Protestantism to happen and we shall heal it, glory be to God.
Well, annalex, your first two paragraphs are so full of false caricatures that there is no room for anything else. It must be very comforting for you as a Catholic to have as your enemies people so stupid, false, and hypocritical.
Then, in your third paragraph, you wrote: “And God is (now that Christ is in Heaven) tangible to our senses?” I read and reread what I wrote trying to figure out what the impetus for this question might have been, and thus what it might mean. I’m sorry, I don’t get it.
Well, I am left with only the Holy Scriptures and the historic Creeds of the Holy, Christian Church. And you possess holy mother church and all her caricatures, excuse me, her “interlocking” caricatures, of what God’s Word says. You offer me the choice: “You can take her too.” Thank you. But offered the choice of taking or leaving her. I will leave her, especially as she is pictured by you.
Jesus performed his own birth?
“It (my comment ‘Infancy Gospel of James, a fraudulent work’)accuratley reflects the belief extant in 2c. Why should I instead take the beliefs of 20c? Looking for fraud, look at it among the shysters of Protestantism.”
Lots of fraudulent beliefs existed in the 2nd. cen. and there are certainly shysters among Protestants but neither do I accept as explanatory of Scripture.
While generalizations are often valid, and Protestantism has its general characteristics as does Catholicism, yet the former is not one particular Church, in the above generalization is far from uniform and is actually more of a recent declension, which is part of taking on form of the world and which is exists, which Catholicism knows of itself. The reformers overall preached repentance and an enduring faith that would bear fruit as salvific*, and today there exists basically three camps within Protestantism.
The first camp is that of liberal, institutionalized churches in which there is little emphasis upon the authority of the Bible, with little strong preaching and heartfelt worship, and the need for salvation is not pressed upon the hearers, and perfunctory professions substituting for such. Catholicism also overall suffers from this type of religion.
The second camp is basically that of churches which may emphasize the Bible and the need for salvation, some fundamentalist types of which may have high standards for Christian conduct while others more appeal to the flesh, but they both preach a gospel in which salvation is not that of faith out of a broken heart and contrite spirit, which God promises to save (Ps. 34:18) and looks to, (Is. 66:2), but instead emphasizes faith in the promise of eternal life bt faith in Christ, largely divorcing faith in Christ as Savior from Jesus is Lord, the latter of which the sinner is to confess in receiving the former. (Rm. 10:9,10)
This does not mean a sinner stops sinning to come to Christ, but as those who do come to Christ are choosing light over darkness, (Jn. 3:19-21) so those who come to Christ to be saved from their sins are those which have a basic change of heart, from darkness the light, which shall be manifest in works which correspond to repentance, things which accompany salvation, (Heb. 6:9) according to the light they have.
The third camp are churches which largely preached this, which range from fundamentalist type churches to holiness Pentecostals, which recognize that repentance is implicit in leading on the Lord Jesus Christ.
Protesting against the current spiritual declension into easy believism, the popular fundamentalist preacher John MacArthur states,
The gospel in vogue today holds forth a false hope to sinners. It promises them that they can have eternal life yet continue to live in rebellion against God. Indeed, it encourages people to claim Jesus as Savior yet defer until later the commitment to obey Him as Lord. It promises salvation from hell but not necessarily freedom from iniquity. It offers false security to people who revel in the sins of the flesh and spurn the way of holiness. By separating faith from faithfulness, it teaches that intellectual assent is as valid as a wholehearted obedience to the truth.
Thus the good news of Christ has given way to the bad news of an insidious easy-believism that makes no moral demands on the lives of sinners. It is not the same message Jesus proclaimed.
One must be careful here, as it is possible to go to the other extreme of making conversion to Christ something that only persons who have sufficient character can be saved by, requiring them to be able to turn from all sins before they are saved, or not taking into account that growth in grace is related to the different degrees of grace of person has realized, and to whomsoever much is given much is required. (Lk. 16:48)
The gospel preaching in the book of Acts called souls to repentance, but it was a basic repentance of faith, recognizing Jesus is Lord and trusting in the salvation out of which transformed life results. But it is the gospel of least resistance, and is least difficult to preach, which does not work to convict men of sin, righteousness and judgment and which brings them to appreciate mercy, that marks the latter days we are in.
“The gospel preaching in the book of Acts called souls to repentance, but it was a basic repentance of faith, recognizing Jesus is Lord and trusting in the salvation out of which transformed life results. But it is the gospel of least resistance, and is least difficult to preach, which does not work to convict men of sin, righteousness and judgment and which brings them to appreciate mercy, that marks the latter days we are in.”
Excellent summery , thank you
I tend to agree with MacArthur , If Christ is not the Lord of your life, He is not Lord at all.
Thanks for the article, I read most of it and like much of it.
"For it would have been possible for Christ to do everything that the Holy Spirit was to carry out. But this is the reason why the Holy Spirit proceeds to miraculous deeds, so that we may learn of His importance. Similarly, the Father could have created all beings, but the Son does this so that we may learn of his power. It is for the same reason that the Holy Spirit undertakes such activity... For the Father is capable of doing all things, as is the Son and the Holy Spirit. (emphasis added) ......
This is the kind of co-equalness I can readily identify with. However, this does not seem to match my interpretation of what Kosta was saying about "causes".
"Is the Spirit greater than you (the Son) because that which could not be borne by the disciples he now prepares us to bear? Is his energy greater and more perfect? No, I am not saying this. For he will declare 'what is mine.' This is why it is said: 'For he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak...' But because he said, 'He will teach and remind you . . .' and that 'he will guide you into all the truth,' he also said, 'He will take what is mine and declare it to you,' so that you will not assume that the Spirit is greater. This means that whatever I (Christ) have said to you, he (the Spirit) will also say to you . . . nothing contrary, except the same things that I have said. And as the Son said, 'I do not speak on my behalf,' meaning that he does not say anything that is his alone and does not come from the Father, so also with the Holy Spirit. The expression, 'He will take what is mine and declare it to you,' as far as I know, has to do with the knowledge of the Son. For the knowledge of the Son and of the Spirit is one and the same ...
This is another good example. None is greater than the others. I really didn't see anything in this article portraying the Father as either "greater" or even a first among equals in the general sense. That is, some see the Pope as a first among equals in a general sense. I didn't see Chrysostom making a similar case for the Father. But that IS the case I thought Kosta was making with "causes".
Everyone at the Second Ecumenical Synod knew well that this question was settled once and for all by the use in the Creed of the word procession as meaning the manner of existence of the Holy Spirit from the Father which constitutes His special individuality. Thus, the Father is unbegotten, i.e. derives His existence from no one. The Son is from the Father by generation. The Holy Spirit is from the Father, not by generation, but by procession. The Father is cause, the Son and the Spirit are caused.
As Lutherans and Orthodox we confess together faith in "the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life." Like the Son, the Holy Spirit receives his existence from the Father, though the Spirit "proceeds from the Father," while the Son is "begotten" of the Father. Like the Son, he receives from the Father the Fathers own divine nature, and so he is one in essence with the Father and the Son
I really didn't see anything in this article portraying the Father as either "greater" or even a first among equals in the general sense
Again, FK, the Bible clearly quotes Jesus as saying "the Father is greater than I." (John 14:28)
The Greek word used (μειζων) is one of those Greek words with a pageful of meaning, generally translated as either greater or elder, in terms of excellence. There is simply no way around this verse.
Holy, Catholic and Apostolic are adjectives and Church is a noun. Not a proper noun. Maybe I don't understand the question or don't know the English grammar well enough to answer.
The dilemma in Romans 9-11 is the conflict between faith and works of the law. Faith is contrasted to legalisms. Faith is not contrasted to any kind of works without distinction, because St. Paul goes on to exhort people to good works later on in the letter, as I showed, and "works" is often qualified "of the law".
For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision: but faith that worketh by charityFaith is work.