“Grace is received through baptism, for instance. Thus, salvation is through grace alone. What will save you, grace or faith? I will be saved by grace alone. Some of that grace I will have received through baptism, but I will still be saved by grace alone.”
At no time is baptism linked with grace in the scripture. In fact, the concept itself negates what “grace” even is. It is not an inanimate object. It is not something one “achieves” through a certain act of obedience. God’s grace is bestowed on man by God directly, who, through His own sovereign right, has grace on whom He will and judges whom He will. It is a free choice of God.
The Apostle Paul does not attain grace by being baptized. He is called by God’s grace:
Gal_1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace,
It is a power wrought by God, outside of human activity.
Eph_3:7 Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power.
It is God’s sovereign grace by which a man is chosen by God, is called, has His eyes opened, confesses Christ, is justified, sanctified, and glorified.
Eph 2:5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
Rom 8:29-30 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (30) Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
The scripture from Romans is interesting, because it makes it clear that God calls, God justifies, God glorifies. It is not God calls, Man answers, Man with God justifies, and God, as a reward to man, justifies man.
It is the work of God, from start to finish. The Father draws, and those whom He draws come to God inevitably.
Joh_6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
No man who belongs to Christ will refuse to come:
Joh_6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
No Christian can be plucked from the hand of God:
Joh 10:27-30 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: (28) And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. (29) My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. (30) I and my Father are one.
This is necessary, because man is corrupt, and in his natural state cannot seek after God.
Rom 3:9-18 What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; (10) As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (11) There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. (12) They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. (13) Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: (14) Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: (15) Their feet are swift to shed blood: (16) Destruction and misery are in their ways: (17) And the way of peace have they not known: (18) There is no fear of God before their eyes.
No man, therefore, can confess Jesus Christ without the power of the Holy Ghost.
1Co_12:3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.
Is God unjust for snatching His own peculiar people from the fires, and not for all humanity? Nay, who are you to reply against God?
Rom 9:14-16 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. (15) For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. (16) So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
Rom 9:20-25 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? (21) Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? (22) What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: (23) And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory, (24) Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles? (25) As he saith also in Osee, I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved.
To summarize, the Catholic view is totally alien to the scriptures, and without fail makes materialistic and fleshy that which God called spirit.
“It only matters that you were wrong, again. “
Your quotes proved nothing at all, except maybe your inability to defend your own theology.
There is nothing wrong with my summation of the scriptures. It is only you, clinging to Roman theology, that forces you to say these things instead of refuting my argument from the scripture.
“No, not once. Yes, Peter was challenged and rebuked by Paul - as he should have been - “
This is what you said. And then, right after, you pretended that the Apostles “held their tongue” in the presence of Peter.
It was James who pronounced the sentence of the judgment, which the church accepted:
Act 15:19-20 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God: (20) But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.
So who is holding their tongue for Pope Peter? It was not Paul, it was not James.
“But we know that there was one. We already have the letter of Clement to the Corinthians, for instance. Ignatius would not be interested in endangering the life of the pope by mentioning him by name.”
That’s ridiculous. If an institution like the Papacy existed, he would refer to it as naturally as he referred to all the Bishops and the hierarchy of the church. Are they expendable but your mysterious Pope, whom you claim always existed, is conveniently left out? Are all the faithful named in those epistles just fodder? Instead, it ends with the Bishop, and goes no further.
In Clement, the organization is also explained, with no reference to any Pope:
1 Clem. 44:1 And our Apostles knew through our Lord Jesus Christ that there would be strife over the name of the bishop’s office.
1 Clem. 44:2 For this cause therefore, having received complete foreknowledge, they appointed the aforesaid persons, and afterwards they provided a continuance, that if these should fall asleep, other approved men should succeed to their ministration. Those therefore who were appointed by them, or afterward by other men of repute with the consent of the whole Church, and have ministered unblamably to the flock of Christ in lowliness of mind, peacefully and with all modesty, and for long time have borne a good report with all these men we consider to be unjustly thrust out from their ministration.
1 Clem. 44:3 For it will be no light sin for us, if we thrust out those who have offered the gifts of the bishop’s office unblamably and holily.
The Bishops themselves were appointed not by a Pope, but by the church at large. Presumably, using the same requirements as Paul, a Bishop must be a husband to but one wife, and so forth.
Furthermore, in 1 Clement, the only reference to Peter is alongside Paul, as fellow martyrs.
No “Our Pope!” or “First of the Apostles” or “The Bishop of Bishops!”
But you want us to believe that the failure to speak of any authority higher than a Bishop, besides God, was denied on purpose to protect the Pope’s life? And so when Ignatius says the head of the Bishop is God, he strategically left out the Pope?
I’m sorry, but it’s too silly a notion for me to fall into.
“Again, the pope is a bishop.”
Really? Let’s see:
882 The Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peters successor, is the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful.402 For the Roman Pontiff, by reason of his office as Vicar of Christ, and as pastor of the entire Church has full, supreme, and universal power over the whole Church, a power which he can always exercise unhindered.403
883 The college or body of bishops has no authority unless united with the Roman Pontiff, Peters successor, as its head. As such, this college has supreme and full authority over the universal Church; but this power cannot be exercised without the agreement of the Roman Pontiff.404
884 The college of bishops exercises power over the universal Church in a solemn manner in an ecumenical council.405 But there never is an ecumenical council which is not confirmed or at least recognized as such by Peters successor.406
This makes Acts 15, with James presiding over the “ecumenical council” and declaring his decision, quite interesting to behold. It certainly makes it ridiculous to believe that neither Ignatius nor Clement would mention the office of the papacy.
On the other hand, they do affirm the existence of Bishops appointed by the Apostles, which agrees totally with the Biblical practice.
“No, my argument is that the context shows you were taking it out of context.”
Nonsense. You have no idea what you are talking about. It clearly says that the throne of Peter is presided over by three Bishops. It says nothing else. Please provide what so called “context” denies that truth?
As expected you’re digging your hole deeper.
“At no time is baptism linked with grace in the scripture.”
St. Luke, writing in Acts on the testimony of St. Paul, connects baptism with the forgiveness of sins (Acts 22:16; also see Acts 2:38). St. Peter directly links baptism and salvation (1 Peter 3:21). How can someone get his sins forgiven or be saved without grace? He can’t. Baptism gives grace.
“In fact, the concept itself negates what grace even is.”
No, it doesn’t.
“It is not an inanimate object. It is not something one achieves through a certain act of obedience. Gods grace is bestowed on man by God directly, who, through His own sovereign right, has grace on whom He will and judges whom He will. It is a free choice of God.”
It is a free choice of God and He freely chooses to give it through baptism.
“To summarize, the Catholic view is totally alien to the scriptures, and without fail makes materialistic and fleshy that which God called spirit.”
Absolutely false. Jesus took on flesh. He still redeemed us and He did it through the death of Himself. Is that too materialistic for you? Didn’t Jesus rise REALLY from the dead with holes in His side and hands and feet? Is that too materialistic for you?
“Your quotes proved nothing at all, except maybe your inability to defend your own theology.”
No, my quotes prove you were taking things out of context to say the least.
“There is nothing wrong with my summation of the scriptures.”
There is something wrong with your interpretation.
“It is only you, clinging to Roman theology, that forces you to say these things instead of refuting my argument from the scripture.”
Nothing is compelling me to say anything except perhaps my love of Truth. You presented no argument from scripture. All you did was post several verses, no argument. Also, your view is a novel one that didn’t exist before the heresy of Protestantism. You’re doomed to fail from the start.
“Thats ridiculous. If an institution like the Papacy existed, he would refer to it as naturally as he referred to all the Bishops and the hierarchy of the church.”
So say you. But your opinion is meaningless.
“In Clement, the organization is also explained, with no reference to any Pope:”
Gee, I’m glad you now know there was a Clement of Rome, bishop of Rome. What you think of his letter is unimportant.
Then there’s this gem from you:
[When contesting that the pope is a bishop you wrote]
“Really? Lets see:”
And then you quote
“882 The Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peters successor...”
Whoa! Right there - “Bishop of Rome”. Case closed.
“This makes Acts 15, with James presiding over the ecumenical council and declaring his decision, quite interesting to behold. It certainly makes it ridiculous to believe that neither Ignatius nor Clement would mention the office of the papacy.”
Actually, no it isn’t. And Peter made the decision at Jerusalem.”
7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them. . . 12 Then all the multitude kept silence, and gave audience to Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.”
Peter made the decision. Everyone kept their silence.
“On the other hand, they do affirm the existence of Bishops appointed by the Apostles, which agrees totally with the Biblical practice.”
And yet you have no bishops appointed by the Apostles or any bishop sent by them or their successors. We do.
“Nonsense. You have no idea what you are talking about.”
Actually I know exactly what I am talking about.
“It clearly says that the throne of Peter is presided over by three Bishops. It says nothing else. Please provide what so called context denies that truth?”
It’s right there.
Here. Read part of Theodoret’s letter to Pope Leo.
From Theodoret, Bishop of Cyrus, to Leo. (See vol. iii. of this Series, p. 293.)
To Leo, bishop of Rome.
I. If Paul appealed to Peter how much more must ordinary folk have recourse to his successor.
If Paul, the herald of the Truth, the trumpet of the Holy Ghost, had recourse to the great Peter, in order to obtain a decision from him for those at Antioch who were disputing about living by the Law, much more do we small and humble folk run to the Apostolic See to get healing from you for the sores of the churches. For it is fitting that you should in all things have the pre-eminence, seeing that your See possesses many peculiar privileges. For other cities get a name for size or beauty or population, and some that are devoid of these advantages are compensated by certain spiritual gifts: but your city has the fullest p. 56 abundance of good things from the Giver of all good. For she is of all cities the greatest and most famous, the mistress of the world and teeming with population. And besides this she has created an empire which is still predominant and has imposed her own name upon her subjects. But her chief decoration is her Faith, to which the Divine Apostle is a sure witness when he exclaims your faith is proclaimed in all the world 375 ; and if immediately after receiving the seeds of the saving Gospel she bore such a weight of wondrous fruit, what words are sufficient to express the piety which is now found in her? She has, too, the tombs of our common fathers and teachers of the Truth, Peter and Paul 376 , to illumine the souls of the faithful. And this blessed and divine pair arose indeed in the East, and shed its rays in all directions, but voluntarily underwent the sunset of life in the West, from whence now it illumines the whole world. These have rendered your See so glorious: this is the chief of all your goods. And their See is still blest by the light of their Gods presence, seeing that therein He has placed your Holiness to shed abroad the rays of the one true Faith.