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The Early Church Fathers on the Scriptures: Reading Scripture with the Early Church...[Ecumenical]
RC.net ^ | RC.net and the Early Church Fathers

Posted on 06/14/2011 5:26:34 PM PDT by Salvation

The Early Church Fathers on the Scriptures
 

Introduction: Reading Scripture with the Early Church Fathers 
What can the early church fathers teach us about Scripture?
Why read the early church fathers and what can they teach us about the scriptures? It is easy to underestimate the contributions of the past and to exaggerate the wisdom of the present. Can we trust the Christian teachers of  the early church period? Did they read the scriptures well? Did their own cultural and religious blind spots prevent them from understanding the heart of the gospel? Today there is renewed interest in the writings of the early church fathers among Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox. Many are rediscovering the rich treasure of wisdom and insight of the early church scholars, pastors, and teachers who devoted their lives to the study of the scriptures. The early fathers had a tremendous zeal for God and the Scriptures. What we see from a distance of some 2000 years, they saw close-up because of their access to the teachings of the apostles and the disciples of the apostles who also passed on their wisdom and insight. 

Who are the early church fathers?
The age of the church fathers begins with the apostles and the first disciples who had the privilege of personal contact with the Lord Jesus. They are the hearers of the Incarnate Word who kept and handed on the words of the Word. The age of the apostles ends with the death of John the Evangelist at the close of the first century. 

The patristic period began with some of the fathers who remembered the apostles John or Peter personally. They did not see Jesus in the flesh, but they had a personal share in the transmission of the apostles' testimony. 

The golden period of the fathers runs from the fourth to the sixth century.  Most date the end of the age of the Fathers of the West with the death of Isidore of Seville in 636, and the age of the Fathers of the East with the death of John Damascene in 749. 

What characterizes a father of the church?
What qualified someone to be recognized as a "father of the church"?  There are four key characteristics. First, their antiquity. The first church father is Clement of Rome, who wrote his letter around the year 96 AD. The early fathers lived and breathed the scriptures and the teachings of the apostles. They were the disciples of—and the disciples of the disciples of—the apostles. They demonstrate how Christ is present in all the Scriptures, from Genesis through Revelations.  [See
How the Scriptures are one book in Christ.] 

A second characteristic of the church fathers is their holiness of life. They studied, meditated, and lived as faithful witnesses of the gospel. And they exhibited a tremendous zeal for God and the Scriptures. They have much to teach us about reverence for God's word and for study and meditation upon it. 

A third characteristic is their orthodox doctrine. Their teaching is recognized as sound within the bounds of Scripture and church tradition. They affirm the central truths of the faith, such as belief in the triune God, that Christ was fully divine and fully human, the redemptive efficacy of Christ's death on the cross, the absolute authority and infallibility of Scripture, the fallen condition of humanity, the significance of baptism, the vital importance of prayer and of the disciplined spiritual life. They were not just theologians, but pastors of the church.  Most of the early fathers were bishops. As shepherds of the church they spoke to the hearts and needs of those in their care. 

The fourth characteristic is ecclesiastical approval. They were affirmed as such by the church itself. Within the broader classification of "Church Fathers" eight are designated as "Doctors of the Church": Ambrose, Jerome, Augustine and Gregory the Great in the West; Basil the Great, Gregory of Nazianzus, Athanasius and John Chrysostom in the East. They are eminent among the fathers for the depth of their learning. 

Reading Scripture is a spiritual activity
How did the early church fathers approach the reading of the Bible? They show us that it's not just an intellectual activity, but more importantly a spiritual one. In fact we need to prepare our hearts and minds for the fruitful study and meditation of the Scriptures. 

Listen to what the early fathers say about reading the Scriptures: 

Origen, who lived between 185-254 AD,  wrote: "The Word of God is in your heart. The Word digs in this soil so that the spring may gush out." 

Jerome, who lived between 342-419 AD, wrote: "You are reading? No.Your betrothed is talking to you. It is your betrothed, that is, Christ, who is united with you. He tears you away from the solitude of the desert and brings you into his home, saying to you, 'Enter into the joy of your Master.'" 

John Chrysostom, who lived between 347-407 AD, wrote: "Listen carefully to me..Procure books [of the Bible] that will be medicines for the soul. At least get a copy of the New Testament, the Apostle's epistles, the Acts, the Gospels, for your constant teachers. If you encounter grief, dive into them as into a chest of medicines; take from them comfort for your trouble, whether it be loss, or death, or bereavement over the loss of relations. Don't simply dive into them. Swim in them. Keep them constantly in your mind. The cause of all evils is the failure to know the Scriptures well."

The reading of the Bible should impact daily living. The Scriptures must be put into practice and translated into daily experience. We must be living testimonies of the Word of God. Reading the church fathers can be very rewarding, but it requires some serious effort. We have to transcend our modern culture and way of looking at things in order to understand the mind and culture of the early church and its way of thinking. If we are willing to hunt and dig a little in our study, then we will find a rich treasure of wisdom and inspiration from the writings of early fathers on the Scriptures.


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; History; Theology
KEYWORDS: catholic; earlychurchfathers
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“Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ.” 
Jerome, c. 347-420

1 posted on 06/14/2011 5:26:38 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: Salvation

This was left-aligned in the view.....sorry.


2 posted on 06/14/2011 5:28:03 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Religion Moderator
Guidelines for Ecumenical Threads

from the Religion Moderator.

Basically, no antagonism.

3 posted on 06/14/2011 5:29:45 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

**The age of the church fathers begins with the apostles and the first disciples who had the privilege of personal contact with the Lord Jesus. They are the hearers of the Incarnate Word who kept and handed on the words of the Word. The age of the apostles ends with the death of John the Evangelist at the close of the first century.**

A lot of people do not understand what the age of the Early Church Fathers actually is.


4 posted on 06/14/2011 5:31:17 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Qualifications of the Early Church Fathers:
 
First, their antiquity.
holiness of life.
orthodox doctrine. (true doctrine)
ecclesiastical approval.

Early church Fathers Ping!

5 posted on 06/14/2011 5:37:24 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

This will be a short series.


6 posted on 06/14/2011 5:40:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
The Early Church Fathers on the Scriptures: Reading Scripture with the Early Church Fathers [Ecumenical]
Fathers of the Church
Abortion and the Early Church [Fathers] (Catholic & Orthodox Caucus)
Why do Catholics always talk about the Early Church Fathers (Apostolic Fathers)?[Ecumenical]
The Church Fathers' Marian Interpretation of the Old Testament (Catholic Caucus)
Writings of the Fathers of the Church
THE CHURCH FATHERS: A DOOR TO ROME (fundamentalist warns saying they sound too Catholic)

Were the Church Fathers Closer to Protestantism Than to Catholicism?
The Faith of Our Fathers
The Early Church Fathers on the Assumption [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
Look to the Church Fathers to Shed Light on Modern Problems, Writes the Pope
Origen: The Privileged Path to Knowing God Is Love
On Origen of Alexandria: He Was a True Teacher (April 25, 2007)
St. Clement of Alexandria: One of the Great Promoters of Dialogue Between Faith and Reason (April 18, 2007)
St. Irenaeus of Lyons: The First Great Theologian of the Church (March 28, 2007)
Early Church Fathers - Worship on Sabbath or Sunday
St. Justin Martyr: He Considered Christianity the “True Philosophy” (March 21, 2007)

Truly a Doctor of Unity (St. Ignatius of Antioch) (March 14, 2007)
On St. Clement of Rome -The Church Has a Sacramental, Not Political Structure (March 7, 2007)
Quotes from the Early Church Fathers
The Early Church Fathers on Baptism - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Contraception - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Justification - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Mary’s Perpetual Virginity - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on the Immaculate Conception - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Confession / Reconciliation - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on The Real Presence - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus

The Early Church Fathers on Intercession of the Saints - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Hell - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on The Primacy of Peter/Rome (Catholic/Orthodox Caucus)
The Early Church Fathers on The Mother of God - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Mary’s Perpetual Virginity - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Salvation Outside the Church [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
The Early Church Fathers on Purgatory - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on Apostolic Succession - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
Early Church Fathers on (Oral) Tradition - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
The Early Church Fathers on The Church (Catholic Caucus)
The Early Church Fathers

7 posted on 06/14/2011 5:42:59 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Qualifications of the Early Church Fathers:

First, their antiquity.
holiness of life.
orthodox doctrine. (true doctrine)
ecclesiastical approval.

We thank you Lord for sending us these men who acted as Your stewards for the fledgling Church.


8 posted on 06/14/2011 5:43:29 PM PDT by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: MarkBsnr

And just think of it. Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples — maybe they even were some of the first disciples.

And some people doubt them?


9 posted on 06/14/2011 5:50:43 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

“And just think of it. Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples — maybe they even were some of the first disciples.

And some people doubt them?”

The first church father is Clement of Rome, who wrote his letter around the year 96 AD

The golden period of the fathers runs from the fourth to the sixth century. Most date the end of the age of the Fathers of the West with the death of Isidore of Seville in 636, and the age of the Fathers of the East with the death of John Damascene in 749

Not trying to be antagonistic, but:
How old were the apostles, Mary and the disciples at their deaths if most of the the Church Fathers knew them?

Will


10 posted on 06/14/2011 6:05:21 PM PDT by will of the people
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To: Salvation
And just think of it. Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples — maybe they even were some of the first disciples.

And some people doubt them?

No, they hate the Church. If they admit that the Church was right, then they have to re examine all of their deeply held beliefs which usually consists of the premise of self-held and developed doctrine. And that now moves into the emotional world, out of the spiritual one. Being wrong is emotionally upsetting to most people. Therefore, if you don't admit you're wrong, you're not upset...

11 posted on 06/14/2011 6:11:16 PM PDT by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Salvation
And just think of it. Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples — maybe they even were some of the first disciples.

And some people doubt them?

No, they hate the Church. If they admit that the Church was right, then they have to re examine all of their deeply held beliefs which usually consists of the premise of self-held and developed doctrine. And that now moves into the emotional world, out of the spiritual one. Being wrong is emotionally upsetting to most people. Therefore, if you don't admit you're wrong, you're not upset...

12 posted on 06/14/2011 6:11:20 PM PDT by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Salvation
Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples

No, I don't think most of them knew the apostles, Mary and/or the disciples.

Very few of them did.

13 posted on 06/14/2011 6:14:31 PM PDT by what's up
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To: Salvation; Elendur; it_ürür; Bockscar; Mary Kochan; Bed_Zeppelin; YellowRoseofTx; Rashputin; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.


14 posted on 06/14/2011 6:17:55 PM PDT by narses ("Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions." Chesterton)
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To: what's up; Salvation

have to agree with what’s up, which kills me since i don’t think i have ever disagreed with salvation before!


15 posted on 06/14/2011 6:22:20 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: one Lord one faith one baptism

OK, so I said “most” How about “some”

Supposed St. John died around the year 90 AD.


16 posted on 06/14/2011 6:26:45 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Pretty much sums up The Mass.

CHAPTER LXV — ADMINISTRATION OF THE SACRAMENTS.

But we, after we have thus washed him who has been convinced and has assented to our teaching, bring him to the place where those who are called brethren are assembled, in order that we may offer hearty prayers in common for ourselves and for the baptized [illuminated] person, and for all others in every place, that we may be counted worthy, now that we have learned the truth, by our works also to be found good citizens and keepers of the commandments, so that we may be saved with an everlasting salvation. Having ended the prayers, we salute one another with a kiss. There is then brought to the president of the brethren bread and a cup of wine mixed with water; and he taking them, gives praise and glory to the Father of the universe, through the name of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and offers thanks at considerable length for our being counted worthy to receive these things at His hands. And when he has concluded the prayers and thanksgivings, all the people present express their assent by saying Amen. This word Amen answers in the Hebrew language to genoito [so be it]. And when the president has given thanks, and all the people have expressed their assent, those who are called by us deacons give to each of those present to partake of the bread and wine mixed with water over which the thanksgiving was pronounced, and to those who are absent they carry away a portion.

CHAPTER LXVI — OF THE EUCHARIST.

And this food is called among us Eukaristia [the Eucharist], of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that the things which we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins, and unto regeneration, and who is so living as Christ has enjoined. For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Saviour, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh. For the apostles, in the memoirs composed by them, which are called Gospels, have thus delivered unto us what was enjoined upon them; that Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, said, “This do ye in remembrance of Me, this is My body;” and that, after the same manner, having taken the cup and given thanks, He said, “This is My blood;” and gave it to them alone.


17 posted on 06/14/2011 6:27:24 PM PDT by HighlyOpinionated (I am a US Citizen, A Patriot, A TEA Partier, An Oath Keeper, A Voter, An Auburn Fan!)
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To: Salvation

other than Ignatius, Clement and Polycarp, i can’t think of any other. how about “very few”? :)


18 posted on 06/14/2011 6:30:20 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: one Lord one faith one baptism

And the other side of the coin is “How many of them knew the apostles and Mary intimately through prayer and revelation?”

We don’t know the answer to that one, do we? In some cases we have some hints, but not always.


19 posted on 06/14/2011 6:32:42 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: one Lord one faith one baptism

OK, I givr......LOL! I goofed in my words.....oh, horrors. LOL!


20 posted on 06/14/2011 6:34:56 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

what we do know for sure is they all were in the same Body of Christ as you and i, which gives us all reason to Praise the Lord for His Love, Mercy and Grace!! Amen!


21 posted on 06/14/2011 6:35:43 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: Salvation

Oh, those typos:

OK, I givr

OK, I give


22 posted on 06/14/2011 6:37:28 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Just as in their own lifetimes, the Fathers of the Church are bringing people to faith, to know and love Jesus, to accept Him and His church and to believe in salvation through His sacrifice.

How many protestant ministers who began reading the Fathers came home because of what they found?

The Holy Spirit works through them even today, hundreds of years after their death.


23 posted on 06/14/2011 7:42:37 PM PDT by Jvette
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To: Salvation

The Early Church Fathers
Their Relationship to the Apostles

Click here for a printable version of this page

The early Church fathers are the men who were thee first leaders of the Church. They left behind volumes and volumes of writings from which it is possible to see exactly what the practices and beliefs of the early Church were. These men lived in the earliest times of the Church before centuries of time had passed and the teachings of the apostles could be lost or forgotten. Of course there were false teachers in the early days of Christianity just as much as there are today. It is important to take into account which men were orthodox and which were early heretics. Though much more could be said on the topic, this is a simple chart which shows the relationship of some of the earliest fathers to the apostles. It helps to show why these men are accepted to be the leaders of the early Church, and not the dissenters. Above all is the fact that many of these men were ordained by the apostles, and they in turn ordained others. It is by this succession that Gnosticism is rejected as a true form of early Christianity where others are not. This succession, beginning with the apostles themselves, is the basis for orthodoxy among early writers was so from the earliest days of the Church:

“Our apostles knew through our Lord Jesus Christ that there would be strife for the office of bishop. For this reason, therefore, having received perfect foreknowledge, they appointed those who have already been mentioned and afterwards added the further provision that, if they should die, other approved men should succeed to their ministry.” - Clement of Rome, Letter to the Corinthians 44:1-3; 80-96AD

“And we are in a position to enumerate those who were instituted bishops by the apostles and their successors down to our own times, men who neither knew nor taught anything like what these heretics rave about” - Irenaeus, Against Heresies 3:3:1; 110-189 AD

“Wherefore it is incumbent to obey the presbyters who are in the Church, — those who, as I have shown, possess the succession from the apostles; those who, together with the succession of the episcopate, have received the certain gift of truth, according to the good pleasure of the Father. But [it is also incumbent] to hold in suspicion others who depart from the primitive succession, and assemble themselves together in any place whatsoever, [looking upon them] either as heretics of perverse minds, or as schismatics puffed up and self-pleasing, or again as hypocrites, acting thus for the sake of lucre and vainglory. For all these have fallen from the truth.” – Irenaues, Against Heresies 4:26:2; 110-189 AD

“But if there be any (heresies) which are bold enough to plant themselves in the midst Of the apostolic age, that they may thereby seem to have been handed down by the apostles, because they existed in the time of the apostles, we can say: Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men, - a man, moreover, who continued stedfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed. Let the heretics contrive something of the same kind. For after their blasphemy, what is there that is unlawful for them (to attempt)? But should they even effect the contrivance, they will not advance a step. For their very doctrine, after comparison with that of the apostles, will declare, by its own diversity and contrariety, that it had for its author neither an apostle nor an apostolic man; because, as the apostles would never have taught things which were self-contradictory, so the apostolic men would not have inculcated teaching different from the apostles, unless they who received their instruction from the apostles went and preached in a contrary manner. To this test, therefore will they be submitted for proof by those churches, who, although they derive not their founder from apostles or apostolic men (as being of much later date, for they are in fact being founded daily), yet, since they agree in the same faith, they are accounted as not less apostolic because they are akin in doctrine. Then let all the heresies, when challenged to these two tests by our apostolic church, offer their proof of how they deem themselves to be apostolic. But in truth they neither are so, nor are they able to prove themselves to be what they are not. Nor are they admitted to peaceful relations and communion by such churches as are in any way connected with apostles, inasmuch as they are in no sense themselves apostolic because of their diversity as to the mysteries of the faith.” – Tertullian, Prescription against Heresies 32; 200 AD


24 posted on 06/14/2011 10:19:00 PM PDT by johngrace (God so loved the world so he gave his only son! Praise Jesus and Hail Mary!)
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To: johngrace

http://www.soladeiverbum.com/ecf.shtml


25 posted on 06/14/2011 10:20:19 PM PDT by johngrace (God so loved the world so he gave his only son! Praise Jesus and Hail Mary!)
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To: johngrace

http://www.soladeiverbum.com/ecf.jpg


26 posted on 06/14/2011 10:21:32 PM PDT by johngrace (God so loved the world so he gave his only son! Praise Jesus and Hail Mary!)
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To: Salvation

I have this book, one of my absolute favorites:
http://books.google.com/books?id=UH4dKfiCcWEC&pg=PA1&dq=the+faith+of+Catholics+rev.+joseph+berington&hl=en&ei=J4v4TcDWLOX20gG1hf2KCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CDcQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q&f=false
Also found here:
http://www.amazon.com/Faith-Catholics-Controversy-confirmed-Scripture/dp/1907436022/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1308134350&sr=8-1

Each section starts with a given element of the Faith, then shows the writings of the Church Fathers upon that subject. It inspires one to want to read more from them.


27 posted on 06/15/2011 3:55:03 AM PDT by sayuncledave (A cruce salus)
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To: Salvation
Thanks for this thread and all the links. As Jesus told the Ephesian church in Revelation 2, "Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent."
28 posted on 06/15/2011 6:45:13 AM PDT by Bed_Zeppelin
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To: Salvation
And just think of it. Most of them knew the apostles, knew the Blessed Virgin Mary, knew the disciples — maybe they even were some of the first disciples. And some people doubt them?

Without getting into the "most, many, some, few" debate I'd like to point out a slight distinction that I and most/many/some/a few other Fundamentalists see.

While we don't outright doubt the early Church Fathers, we also don't extend the idea of infallibility to them either. Only the Apostles have that cloak, and then only in matters where the Holy Spirit was guiding them. We actually have an example of an Apostle acting outside of the Holy Spirit's guiding in Galatians 2:11 where Peter and Barnabas were guided by peer pressure from the Jewish converts to shun Gentile believers.

Now that's not to say that the Holy Spirit couldn't and didn't work through the early Church Fathers, since it was by His guidance that we were given the Canon of Scripture, but discernment becomes of the utmost importance due to their lack of a first hand knowledge of the events surrounding Christ's life, crucifixion, burial and resurrection.

Simply put, we hold to the idea that Reagan put so succinctly as "Trust, but Verify". I personally find it very enlightening and rewarding to read what some of the early Church Fathers have written, as it gives a great insight to what they went through to help spread the Gospel in those early years.

29 posted on 06/15/2011 7:33:34 AM PDT by paladin1_dcs (Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil.)
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To: Salvation

Unfortunately, according to today’s Catholic and Orthodox churches, the fathers were ignoramuses whenever they endorsed a literal reading of Genesis because they were “men of their time.” On everything else they were experts, but on Genesis they were idiots.


30 posted on 06/15/2011 7:40:03 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Unfortunately that's a symptom all too common across most denominations of Christianity as well as portions of Judaism as well. Often modern man is enthralled with the idea that his generation, whenever that generation may be in time, is the most advanced and wisest of all time and only they can rightly judge these documents. It never occurs to them that maybe, just maybe, there's an intellect far beyond their own who designed us and our surroundings and it's we who are catching up to His understanding of the written record and not the other way around.
31 posted on 06/15/2011 9:12:45 AM PDT by paladin1_dcs (Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil.)
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To: Jvette

**How many protestant ministers who began reading the Fathers came home because of what they found?**

Amen to that. It happens again and again.


32 posted on 06/15/2011 9:51:33 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: paladin1_dcs

**While we don’t outright doubt the early Church Fathers, we also don’t extend the idea of infallibility to them either.**

This is a new area for me, but I believe the Early Church Fathers did NOT agree on everything.


33 posted on 06/15/2011 9:55:39 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: johngrace
Wow! Look at this!

Chart


 


34 posted on 06/15/2011 9:59:18 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation; Jvette

While I am most closely identified as a Fundamentalist, I most gladly admit that much of what I found in the early Church writings has strengthened my belief that the Scriptures are whole and without error. That is not to say that there has been anything to weaken that faith, just that not everything that I read pertained to reinforcing the idea of the infallibility of Canon. If anything, it’s drawn me into a deeper understanding of the Faith and drawn me closer to Christ.


35 posted on 06/15/2011 10:34:53 AM PDT by paladin1_dcs (Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil.)
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To: Salvation

Nice chart. Thanks.


36 posted on 06/15/2011 12:01:48 PM PDT by Not gonna take it anymore
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To: Salvation

Thanks-I do not know how to do images or charts on our freeper site. It looks beautiful. If a picture speaks a thousand words this chart speaks volumes! Amen!


37 posted on 06/15/2011 2:53:56 PM PDT by johngrace (God so loved the world so he gave his only son! Praise Jesus and Hail Mary!)
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To: Salvation
This is a new area for me, but I believe the Early Church Fathers did NOT agree on everything.

How very true, but the discussions and disagreements we have today are a mean reflection of the millions of hours of thought, study, dedication and scholarship that the early church fathers devoted to the faith and therefore we have much to gain from going over what they battled so hard over -- it means we don't have to do it today -- there is little new or original.

It is almost a conceit we show today in thinking our enominational and doctrinal arguements are original since they were likely settled through the centuries.

38 posted on 06/15/2011 3:21:38 PM PDT by KC Burke
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To: paladin1_dcs
Unfortunately that's a symptom all too common across most denominations of Christianity as well as portions of Judaism as well. Often modern man is enthralled with the idea that his generation, whenever that generation may be in time, is the most advanced and wisest of all time and only they can rightly judge these documents. It never occurs to them that maybe, just maybe, there's an intellect far beyond their own who designed us and our surroundings and it's we who are catching up to His understanding of the written record and not the other way around.

True. I have never understood how these champions of modernity and rationality justify their support and celebration of non-western, non-modern, non-rational "indigenous pipples."

39 posted on 06/15/2011 7:42:46 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu.)
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To: paladin1_dcs; Salvation; Jvette
While I am most closely identified as a Fundamentalist, I most gladly admit that much of what I found in the early Church writings has strengthened my belief that the Scriptures are whole and without error.

Yes but today "we know better."

I'll never understand it. Catholics and Orthodox will cite the fathers to "prove" something, but if you quote a father who believes Genesis actually happened just as it is written they'll say "they didn't know any better back then."

40 posted on 06/15/2011 7:47:54 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
I'll never understand it. Catholics and Orthodox will cite the fathers to "prove" something, but if you quote a father who believes Genesis actually happened just as it is written they'll say "they didn't know any better back then."

I understand it well enough, but it's still a serious problem and it doesn't just affect Catholic and Orthodox believers, it's actually rampant, perhaps even more so if that's possible, within the mainline Protestant Churches as well. The problem stems from an adherence to Church doctrine, of whatever stripe, above an adherence to intellectual honesty as it pertains to the Scriptures. I say that not in an accusing manner though, but with an understanding that a reluctance to examine one's own cherished beliefs is natural and incredibly hard to overcome. Furthermore, it's not something that is solely limited to Catholic or Orthodox believers, or even Christians in general, but that it's a human trait present in all groups and across all religions. It doesn't make it any easier to deal with, but I do understand where it comes from.

41 posted on 06/15/2011 8:25:33 PM PDT by paladin1_dcs (Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil.)
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To: paladin1_dcs
I understand it well enough, but it's still a serious problem and it doesn't just affect Catholic and Orthodox believers, it's actually rampant, perhaps even more so if that's possible, within the mainline Protestant Churches as well. The problem stems from an adherence to Church doctrine, of whatever stripe, above an adherence to intellectual honesty as it pertains to the Scriptures. I say that not in an accusing manner though, but with an understanding that a reluctance to examine one's own cherished beliefs is natural and incredibly hard to overcome. Furthermore, it's not something that is solely limited to Catholic or Orthodox believers, or even Christians in general, but that it's a human trait present in all groups and across all religions. It doesn't make it any easier to deal with, but I do understand where it comes from.

All this is very true, but you're missing a couple of points. First, liberal mainline Protestant churches don't claim to be divinely-guided institutions with an unchanged and unchanging doctrine. The Catholics and Orthodox do. Furthermore Catholics and Orthodox believe in plenty of things just as "impossible" as the events of Genesis 1-11 yet they insist on them as dogmas while dismissing Genesis. Why do they do this?

I'll tell you why. It's sociology; nothing more, nothing less. They don't accept Genesis because Genesis is for "those people;" you know the ones. Inbred, bad teeth, live in trailer parks, their parents are siblings??? No one wants to be associated with those awful sub-human creatures, so Genesis is didactic mythology. Meanwhile Mary made the sun dance in Portugal in 1917, because that's different. That's a good "intellectual" miracle. Not like that Adam and Eve nonsense.

Do you see what I am getting at? Catholics and Orthodox, who represent the historical version of the chr*stian religion so under attack by liberals, join those liberals in attacking the most loyal chr*stians in the world because they're not "their kind of people." It's absolutely disgusting. Why should any Catholic or Orthodox chr*stian complain about liberal "chr*stophobia" when they treat their alleged "co-religionists" that way?

To be fair, the reason all Fundamentalist Protestants--who ordinarily can't agree on anything--all interpret Genesis 1-11 identically is also sociology. So it works both ways.

I don't know how long you've been on FR, but if you're new, you're going to be very hurt at seeing your "co-religionists" use the exact same language and terminology for you as the atheists and liberals do. And this from churches allegedly run directly from heaven. No wonder we're in such a mess.

Finally, the Catholic/Orthodox war on fundamentalism has made it possible for all religion to be written off as subjective ethno-cultural folklore which no one (except for "fanatics") takes seriously any more. Do you honestly think for one minute that we would be living in a world where people automatically dismiss "religion" as the grounds for any moral position whatsoever if Catholicism and Orthodoxy hadn't been waging war against those awful "fundamentalists" for decades? No. This is their fault. And they deserve the disasters their churches are going through.

Once upon a time it was understood that believing in a religion meant believing it was actually true in the mundane, factual sense of the word. Thanks to redneck-hating chr*stians we now live in a world where no one except dangerous lunatics believe such a thing.

May their pernicious souls rot half a grain a day.

42 posted on 06/15/2011 9:04:01 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
I don't want to interrupt your wonderful posts tonight, but I have been following them with fascination that there is someone somewhere who truly sees what is happening and is not afraid to tell it. Thank you for your insight.

The closer one gets to God's word as the only authority, the deeper the disdain for that person becomes. The easier the Bible is explained, in dispensations that make God's word suddenly become alive and available to anyone to grasp and grow, the deeper the mockery becomes. To show someone how to rightly divide God's word of truth, in order to see the beauty, the grace, the power, the simplicity, and the plan God has for man, the louder the wailing and gnashing become. When I first came aboard I thought there would be a Rightly Dividing party every night, questions and questions and that moment the lightbulb would go on with someone, we would all thank God for His grace and mercy in bringing us all together.

That's not quite how it's worked out. It's more a "I'm standing here with nothing but my Bible" and in rolls the carts of doctrines and traditions, and catechisms, all ready to do battle to destroy the "doctrine from hell' as dispensationalism is called. And yet, here I stand proving point after point to anyone with any desire to understand. Just me and my KJ Bible. Don't they see something REAL that can change their life? Don't they want to be a workman for God, that needeth not to be ashamed? They see it and hear it every day. And disdain it. It cannot be right because we have 2 Billion people and you have Bible Studies in your local Denny's. or whatever. Look at our beautiful Cathedrals and what do you say you worship in? Believers houses. 'hmmmmm' We, as dispensationalists, are the lowest of the low on the religious system hiearchy.I am not complaining, just amazed at the caste system and its no need for truth yet desperation to hold on to the lies. At ALL cost.

Anyway, thank you for you wonderful posts. They open eyes who want to see.

43 posted on 06/15/2011 10:24:31 PM PDT by smvoice (The Cross was NOT God's Plan B.)
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To: smvoice

Well, I don’t know what to say, as I am neither a dispensationalist, a Protestant (”sola scriptura”), nor a chr*stian. I simply believe that G-d doesn’t lie. Why only dispensationalist Protestants understand that these days I have no idea.


44 posted on 06/16/2011 8:01:10 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
I simply believe that G-d doesn’t lie.

... Which is all you need to say. Which is all we ALL need to remember. And say. Thanks again for your terrific posts. smvoice

45 posted on 06/16/2011 11:47:01 AM PDT by smvoice (The Cross was NOT God's Plan B.)
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To: smvoice

how can there be a “rightly dividing the word party every night”, when you are the only one in 2,000 years who is able to rightly understand the Scriptures, especially the Book of Acts?
what really is needed is for you to post your brilliance, and the rest of us will become enlightened. we all just need to throw off 2,000 years of Orthodox, Biblical Christianity, and accept your rightly dividing the Word. truly we all are blessed to be living at the same time as you, it’s a shame all the other Christians who lived for the last 2,000 never had the chance to rightly divide the Word.


46 posted on 06/16/2011 6:28:19 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: smvoice; Zionist Conspirator

you come across someone who admits to not believing in Jesus Christ and not being in His Body, and you tell him all he needs to say is God doesn’t lie? yet you attack Orthodox Biblical beliefs!! very interesting.


47 posted on 06/16/2011 6:37:01 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: one Lord one faith one baptism

Your screen name leaves off one very important Person. One Spirit. Who would lead you into understanding the one baptism that you misunderstand, too. So, you see, any advice you offer, when compared with your screen name offenses, would leave no room for anything but arguing back and forth. Rather, you would be better served to take your posts to someone who believes respect is to be earned. Good luck


48 posted on 06/16/2011 8:08:31 PM PDT by smvoice (The Cross was NOT God's Plan B.)
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To: smvoice

if you were part of the Church, you would know no one can say Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit.


49 posted on 06/16/2011 8:15:13 PM PDT by one Lord one faith one baptism
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To: one Lord one faith one baptism

If I were part of which, the Church the Body of Christ, or your Church?


50 posted on 06/16/2011 8:19:01 PM PDT by smvoice (The Cross was NOT God's Plan B.)
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