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Apostolic Succession and the Roman Catholic Church
The Orthodox Presbyterian Church ^

Posted on 06/13/2013 10:02:02 AM PDT by Alex Murphy

Question:

I have a few questions for you about the "OPC." First, do you teach apostolic succession, and, if so, do you believe ministers outside of the OPC are not really ministers? Second, do you believe that the "gifts of the Holy Spirit" are for today, i.e., are healing, tongues, prophetic revelation, and miracles as led by the Holy Spirit actively manifest in our modern churches? Finally, how are you different from the Roman Catholic Church?

Answer:

Thank you for your questions. Let me take them one at a time.

1. "Do you teach apostolic succession, and, if so, do you believe ministers outside of the OPC are not really ministers?"

It is helpful to distinguish between "apostolic succession" and "apostolicity." By the doctrine of apostolic succession the Roman Catholic Church asserts its claim of an uninterrupted and continuous line of succession extending from the twelve apostles through the bishops they ordained right up to the bishops of the present day. According to this doctrine, the apostles appointed the first bishops as their successors, granting to them their own teaching authority, which continues until the end of the age (see paragraph 77 of Catechism of the Catholic Church).

Let me direct you to other relevant passages of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. The significance of the Roman Catholic doctrine of apostolic succession is immediately apparent in its definition of a "particular church." A particular church "refers to a community of the Christian faithful in communion of faith and sacraments with their bishop ordained in apostolic succession" (paragraph 833). "[I]t is for bishops as the successors of the apostles to hand on the 'gift of the Spirit,' the 'apostolic line'" (paragraph 1576). Without apostolic succession there is no church.

In close connection with the idea of apostolic succession is the transmission from generation to generation of the "Tradition." By Tradition, Catholics refer to that part of the church's "doctrine, life, and worship" that is distinct from Scripture (paragraph 78). This Tradition, Catholics argue, does not contradict Scripture, and maintains faithfully the unwritten but authoritative teachings and traditions of the apostles and early church fathers. Tradition is to be believed by the members of the church. It is the apostolic succession of bishops that perpetuates and guarantees both the faithful teaching of Scripture and Tradition.

Protestants have reacted strongly against the doctrine of apostolic succession. They have done so in a number of ways, historical and theological. One of these ways is by affirming the apostolicity of the church. Apostolicity may be defined as receiving and obeying apostolic doctrine as it is set forth in the New Testament. In matters of doctrine and life, Protestants permit no ultimate appeal to traditions that are distinct from canonical Scripture. For example, the Westminster Confession of Faith 1.10 says this:

The supreme judge by which all controversies of religion are to be determined, and all decrees of councils, opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of men, and private spirits, are to be examined, and in whose sentence we are to rest, can be no other but the Holy Spirit speaking in the Scripture.

Absolutely no provision is made for an authoritative, unwritten tradition. In fact, it is to the touchstone of Scripture that all traditions, including those of Roman Catholicism, must be brought.

Protestants have correctly observed that it is the appeal to Tradition that has made possible many doctrines and practices of Roman Catholicism that have no basis in Scripture. These include (to name only a handful) the papacy, papal infallibility, purgatory, the mass, the immaculate conception, and the assumption of Mary.

Even if it were historically provable that there was an unbroken succession of bishops from the first century to the present day Roman Catholic bishops (and it is not), Protestants would still demur to claims of Roman authority based upon apostolic succession. It is the apostolicity of the church that counts. And it is precisely by the standard of apostolicity that the Roman Catholic Church is measured and found wanting.

The Orthodox Presbyterian Church recognizes as ministers those men ordained to that office by true churches, which are identified by the attribute of apostolicity.

2. "Do you believe that the 'gifts of the Holy Spirit' are for today, i.e., are healing, tongues, prophetic revelation, and miracles as led by the Holy Spirit actively manifest in our modern churches?"

Orthodox Presbyterian are cessationists with regard to the word gifts. For a very careful exposition of scriptural teaching regarding the word gifts and healing, I refer you to the Orthodox Presbyterian Church's "Report of the Committee on the Baptism and Gifts of the Holy Spirit," which may be retrieved at http://opc.org/GA/giftsHS.html.

3. "How is the Orthodox Presbyterian Church different from the Roman Catholic Church?"

Thousands of books and articles have been written that carefully distinguish between Roman Catholicism and churches, like the OPC, which belong to the historic Protestant tradition. Please permit me to point you to two articles that will assist you in your studies.

I recommend "Resolutions for Roman Catholic & Evangelical Dialogue," which may be retrieved at http://www.modernreformation.org/default.php?page=articledisplay&var1=ArtRead&var2=876&var3=authorbio&var4=AutRes&var5=1. This statement is quite short, but points to a number of crucial differences between historic Protestants and Catholics.

Michael Horton has written an excellent article pointing to the differences between historic Protestants and Catholics on the doctrine of justification. "Justification, Vital Now & Always" may be retrieved at

http://www.christianity.com/partner/Article_Display_Page/0,,PTID307086|CHID597662|CIID1415598,00.html.

Let me also suggest a brief survey of the history and beliefs of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, which may be retrieved at http://opc.org/what_is/the_opc.html.

While the differences between the Roman Catholic Church and historic Protestantism are many, let me focus on the one difference that must always be kept in mind, namely, the issue of authority. In every debate between Roman Catholics and historic Protestants, whether it be over the nature of the papacy, the place of tradition, justification, the role of Mary, the sacraments, or any other disputed matter, the question of authority will always surface. By what standard are matters of religious controversy judged? Historic Protestants will appeal to the Bible as the final authority in all matters of Christian faith and practice.

Roman Catholics, on the other hand, appeal to Scripture and Tradition as authoritatively interpreted by the papacy and its courts. The >i>Catechism of the Catholic Church claims this:

The Lord made Simon alone, whom he named Peter, the "rock" of his Church. He gave him the keys of his Church and instituted him shepherd of the whole flock. "The office of binding and loosing which was given to Peter was also assigned to the college of apostles united to its head." This pastoral office of Peter and the other apostles belongs to the Church's very foundation and is continued by the bishops under the primacy of the Pope. The Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peter's successor, "is the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful." "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' (paragraphs 881-882).

People often express surprise at the broad differences between Roman Catholics and historic Protestants. The differences are not only understandable, but also necessary, when examined from the standpoint of authority. As long as Protestants and Catholics appeal to two different authorities, an unbridgeable gulf separates them.

The Westminster Confession of Faith states clearly the historic Protestant position on the question of authority:

The whole counsel of God concerning all things necessary for his own glory, man's salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men. (Westminster Confession of Faith, 1.6).

The additions to which the authors of the Confession refer include not only the traditions of the papacy, but also the papal institution itself. The source of the irreconcilable differences between the Roman Catholic Church and historic Protestantism rests here. Reconciliation between historic Protestants and Roman Catholics would require either that Catholics abandon the papacy and its traditions, or that Protestants surrender their bedrock conviction that Scripture is the only infallible rule of faith and practice. The issue of authority leaves no room for compromise.


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Mainline Protestant; Ministry/Outreach
KEYWORDS: catholicobsession
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It is helpful to distinguish between "apostolic succession" and "apostolicity." By the doctrine of apostolic succession the Roman Catholic Church asserts its claim of an uninterrupted and continuous line of succession extending from the twelve apostles through the bishops they ordained right up to the bishops of the present day. According to this doctrine, the apostles appointed the first bishops as their successors, granting to them their own teaching authority, which continues until the end of the age...In close connection with the idea of apostolic succession is the transmission from generation to generation of the "Tradition." By Tradition, Catholics refer to that part of the church's "doctrine, life, and worship" that is distinct from Scripture. This Tradition, Catholics argue, does not contradict Scripture, and maintains faithfully the unwritten but authoritative teachings and traditions of the apostles and early church fathers. Tradition is to be believed by the members of the church. It is the apostolic succession of bishops that perpetuates and guarantees both the faithful teaching of Scripture and Tradition....

....Protestants have reacted strongly against the doctrine of apostolic succession. They have done so in a number of ways, historical and theological. One of these ways is by affirming the apostolicity of the church. Apostolicity may be defined as receiving and obeying apostolic doctrine as it is set forth in the New Testament. In matters of doctrine and life, Protestants permit no ultimate appeal to traditions that are distinct from canonical Scripture...Absolutely no provision is made for an authoritative, unwritten tradition. In fact, it is to the touchstone of Scripture that all traditions, including those of Roman Catholicism, must be brought. Protestants have correctly observed that it is the appeal to Tradition that has made possible many doctrines and practices of Roman Catholicism that have no basis in Scripture. These include (to name only a handful) the papacy, papal infallibility, purgatory, the mass, the immaculate conception, and the assumption of Mary. Even if it were historically provable that there was an unbroken succession of bishops from the first century to the present day Roman Catholic bishops (and it is not), Protestants would still demur to claims of Roman authority based upon apostolic succession. It is the apostolicity of the church that counts. And it is precisely by the standard of apostolicity that the Roman Catholic Church is measured and found wanting....

....While the differences between the Roman Catholic Church and historic Protestantism are many, let me focus on the one difference that must always be kept in mind, namely, the issue of authority. In every debate between Roman Catholics and historic Protestants, whether it be over the nature of the papacy, the place of tradition, justification, the role of Mary, the sacraments, or any other disputed matter, the question of authority will always surface. By what standard are matters of religious controversy judged? Historic Protestants will appeal to the Bible as the final authority in all matters of Christian faith and practice. Roman Catholics, on the other hand, appeal to Scripture and Tradition as authoritatively interpreted by the papacy and its courts....

....As long as Protestants and Catholics appeal to two different authorities, an unbridgeable gulf separates them...The source of the irreconcilable differences between the Roman Catholic Church and historic Protestantism rests here. Reconciliation between historic Protestants and Roman Catholics would require either that Catholics abandon the papacy and its traditions, or that Protestants surrender their bedrock conviction that Scripture is the only infallible rule of faith and practice. The issue of authority leaves no room for compromise.

From the bottom of the webpage:

"Questions and Answers" is a weekly feature of the OPC website. At least one new question is posted each week, so there should always be something new here for you to read. (For those who would like to look at previous questions and answers, they will continue to be available as well.)

The questions come from individuals like yourself. If you have questions about biblical and theological matters, you are invited to send them by e-mail by using the "Pose a Question" link on the OPC home page or by clicking here.

The purpose of the OPC website's "Questions and Answers" is to respond to biblical and theological questions. Matters of church discipline, disputes, or debates go beyond the scope of our work. We recommend that you present your concerns in these areas to the appropriate judicatory. In most cases this will be to a local pastor, elder, or session. We do not want the website to replace personal involvement in, or commitment to, the local, visible church.

While we will respond to every serious questioner, we are not bound to give a substantive answer to every question, should we deem the question to be beyond the scope of our purpose or our own ability to answer.

You will receive an answer by email. Please be patient as many of our respondents are busy pastors. The response to your question may take up to two weeks. Some of the questions submitted will be chosen to be posted here, along with the corresponding answers.

The answers come from individual ministers in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church expressing their own convictions and do not necessarily represent an "official" position of the Church, especially in areas where the Standards of the Church (the Scriptures and the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms) are silent.


1 posted on 06/13/2013 10:02:02 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

“Even if it were historically provable that there was an unbroken succession of bishops from the first century to the present day Roman Catholic bishops (and it is not), Protestants would still demur to claims of Roman authority based upon apostolic succession. It is the apostolicity of the church that counts. And it is precisely by the standard of apostolicity that the Roman Catholic Church is measured and found wanting.”

Where does your definition of ‘apostolicity’ first appear?


2 posted on 06/13/2013 10:03:54 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: Alex Murphy

Very interesting article expressing a profound doctrinal position. I accept what the article states as the Protestant position on the issue.


3 posted on 06/13/2013 10:13:28 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: JCBreckenridge

OPn Apostolic succession.

Acts

21 Therefore it is necessary to choose one of the men who have been with us the whole time the Lord Jesus was living among us, 22 beginning from John’s baptism to the time when Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become a witness with us of his resurrection.

This is what the Apostles required. Whom today fulfills these requirements ?


4 posted on 06/13/2013 10:16:55 AM PDT by Bidimus1
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS
I accept what the article states as the Protestant position on the issue.

Which brand of Protestant?

5 posted on 06/13/2013 10:17:32 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro can't pass E-verify)
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS
"I accept what the article states as the Protestant .. non Catholic .. position on the issue.

Fixed

6 posted on 06/13/2013 10:18:35 AM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof, but they're true.)
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To: Bidimus1
" .. to the time when Jesus was taken up from us ..


Kind'a limits it, IMO.

7 posted on 06/13/2013 10:20:11 AM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof, but they're true.)
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To: JCBreckenridge

There is another element besides your observations. The position that the priest or minister must be free from sin before he can administer sacrament.( I’m aware that the Donatist position was condemned.)However the question arises what if serious sins are prevalent among the priest and bishops FOR CENTURIES? In short an apostasy of the Church leadership. God can withdraw from such a people.


8 posted on 06/13/2013 10:24:19 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: Bidimus1

Ok, and what happened when the last of these people died? Did the church die with them?

Or did the Apostle appoint others to carry on their mission the way that Christ appointed them?

That’s what we see in Acts - the Apostles selected another. The Apostles have the authority to select their successors. And so on and so forth.

We look at Irenaeus, and one of the things he talks about is having a list of bishops - and how the continuity from one bishop to another is important.

What we don’t see is the argument that Alex is making here. This is significant. If it were so, we would see it then. But we do not.

We’re supposed to believe that a Church that has no existence whatsoever before John Knox has it right, while the Church that was in existence prior to Knox has it wrong.

Does that make much sense to you?


9 posted on 06/13/2013 10:27:15 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: Alex Murphy
Protestants permit no ultimate appeal to traditions that are distinct from canonical Scripture.

But they'll accept scripture as canonical based on ... what authority? The authority of the Church. The authority of the Apostles.

The same tradition or traditions - in fact - that they pretend not to appeal to.

Why do Protestants not recognize - for instance - the Gnostic gospels? The Church at the time of the founding fathers recognized the true Gospels as being true - and the Gnostic Gospels as being false. If Protestants reject that 'tradition' then upon what basis do they reject the Gnostic gospels? It's all 'scripture' after all?

For those who haven't investigated them - the stuff in some of those Gnostic gospels is pretty whacked out.

Protestants must either accept that the Church indeed has authority to declare what is canonical and what is not - or they must admit that they have no consistent basis for ruling out those weird 'Gospels' that depict Christ baking his friends in an oven, turning bread into birds or being suspended over Jerusalem by his hair.

10 posted on 06/13/2013 10:29:40 AM PDT by agere_contra (I once saw a movie where only the police and military had guns. It was called 'Schindler's List'.)
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To: A.A. Cunningham

Any and all Protestants. I imagine one can find a sect that rejects the doctrine that all traditions, teachings etc. must square with the bible as God’s word; if so, I’m not aware of them. Tradition, history, philosophy, theology etc. are not God’s direct word, but the interpretations of men. If they square with scripture fine, if not, too bad. The doctrine is not a matter of debate, discussion different points of view, in short, an axiom.


11 posted on 06/13/2013 10:30:28 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS

“The position that the priest or minister must be free from sin before he can administer sacrament.”

This is false. The sacraments are efficacious even if the priest is sinner. Every priest is a sinner. Every person within the church is a filthy sinner in need of Christ and redemption.

“However the question arises what if serious sins are prevalent among the priest and bishops FOR CENTURIES?”

Better question - has there ever been a time when sins were not prevelent among the priests and bishops

“God can withdraw from such a people.”

Then what do you make of this?

http://www.christianpost.com/news/first-gay-episcopal-bishop-gene-robinson-talks-about-jesus-alternative-lifestyle-96790/

I see what you are saying - however, I don’t see it that pastors are immune from sin and that this argument would apply only to the Catholic church. What do you think Jesus would think of today, the folks who, in his name, claim that homosexual actions are laudable acts? Who encourage young women to abort their children?

Would you stand back and say that these churches have lost their way and that any sincere Christian has an obligation to leave these churches?


12 posted on 06/13/2013 10:32:31 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: A.A. Cunningham

Doesn’t matter which one...

The Unity most Protestants have is in the person of Jesus Christ...

The Catholic denomination ‘centers’ on their church ‘membership’, ‘rites’, ‘icons’ and the leadership their ‘pope’....with ‘Mary’ thrown in as close to upsurping Christ Himself.... there are also many branches within the catholic denomination just as with Protestants.


13 posted on 06/13/2013 10:32:52 AM PDT by caww
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To: agere_contra
Protestants must either accept that the Church indeed has authority to declare what is canonical and what is not - or they must admit that they have no consistent basis for ruling out those weird 'Gospels' that depict Christ baking his friends in an oven, turning bread into birds or being suspended over Jerusalem by his hair.

Is it possible God had a Hand in preservation in His Word? If so, then mans part is insignificant in comparison. What happened to "Give God the Glory"? Was it replaced by "Look! Look! at Me! Look! Look! at my church!"? All things work to the glory of God but they do not replace/diminish Him.

14 posted on 06/13/2013 10:37:02 AM PDT by BipolarBob (Jesus gave us His life, His Word and His Spirit. Catholics made it a franchise.)
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To: JCBreckenridge
What we don’t see is the argument that Alex is making here. This is significant. If it were so, we would see it then. But we do not. We’re supposed to believe that a Church that has no existence whatsoever before John Knox has it right, while the Church that was in existence prior to Knox has it wrong.

You posts claims that I'm making "this argument", that I'm making it "here", and that you "don't see it". Maybe the reason no one can see it is that I haven't made it.

15 posted on 06/13/2013 10:39:08 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

“You posts claims that I’m making “this argument”, that I’m making it “here”, and that you “don’t see it”. Maybe the reason no one can see it is that I haven’t made it.”

You have a definition of apostolicity that is contrary to what Ireneaus and Tertullian claimed. Hence the question.

When did this definition that you are advocating here first appear? Who was the first person to make this argument?


16 posted on 06/13/2013 10:41:12 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww

“The Unity most Protestants have is in the person of Jesus Christ.”

Are you saying that you are in unity at present with Bishop Vicky Gene Robinson?


17 posted on 06/13/2013 10:42:15 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge

Wrong question.


18 posted on 06/13/2013 10:43:54 AM PDT by caww
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To: BipolarBob

So then you do acknowledge that the Canon was put together by the Catholic church?


19 posted on 06/13/2013 10:44:02 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww

Yes or no, Caww?

You said that all protestants are in union with one another.

Bishop Vicky Gene Robinson is a protestant

You are a protestant.

Therefore, I can only conclude that you are in unity with him.

IF you are not in unity with him - how does one determine which protestants are in unity with one another since you are saying that not all of you are in union with one another despite both of you calling the other, ‘protestant’.


20 posted on 06/13/2013 10:45:41 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge

Probably so. I wasn’t there.


21 posted on 06/13/2013 10:45:59 AM PDT by BipolarBob (Jesus gave us His life, His Word and His Spirit. Catholics made it a franchise.)
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To: BipolarBob

Ok. Thanks. :)


22 posted on 06/13/2013 10:46:24 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: Alex Murphy

This is a well written article, and clearly states a particular point of view.

However, as has been written greatly on this forum previously, the practice of relying solely on Scripture is found wanting, as the canon of Scripture can’t reference itself.

The cannon of Scripture was defined by the Roman Catholic Church, there is no dispute in that. It can’t reference itself, as only individual books existed (except the Pentatuch). There was no defined cannon to reference, prior to the 400s.

While I appreciate learning different points of view, it is worth noting that without Apostolic Succession, there is a lack of authentic Authority with which to settle disputes.

Recall the first major dispute was settled by Peter, in Rome, and not by the canon of Scripture.

Just my $.02


23 posted on 06/13/2013 10:47:56 AM PDT by SpirituTuo
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To: JCBreckenridge

You did not read my post closely. I stated I was aware that the Donatist position was rejected. I did not state I accepted the doctrine they promulgated. I merely brought up the question of apostasy through wide spread sin in the church leadership. When one finds out that ones individual priest is engaging in anal intercourse with a twelve year old boy one is horrified but agrees the church survives. If one finds out it is widespread and the leadership participates and covers up the wrongdoing over an extended period of time; that I submit is quite a different set of facts. Apostasy can happen, indeed Christian apostasy is predicted. Of course, apostasy applies to Protestant ministers. I would not join many “mainstream” Protestant branches that have accepted Sodomite “marriage.” Indeed, St. Paul advised us to “come out from among them.” Which the early Protestants in fact did by reason of widespread church sin.


24 posted on 06/13/2013 10:49:13 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: JCBreckenridge

====Ok, and what happened when the last of these people died? Did the church die with them?

No The Church continued on as it had before with the Head of the Church - Chirst and the Elders (Bishops) and Decons Continuing to do the task as given them by the Apostles.

====Or did the Apostle appoint others to carry on their mission the way that Christ appointed them?

No Record of Apostles appointing any others to be Apostles save Mathias in the New Testament.

====The Apostles have the authority to select their successors. And so on and so forth.

And the only recorded time they did they used requirements as stated in Acts 1 21-22

====We look at Irenaeus, and one of the things he talks about is having a list of bishops - and how the continuity from one bishop to another is important.

Bishops - Elders are not Apostles the means by which a Elder - Bishop - Overseer is chosen does not have the requirements of an Apostle.

====What we don’t see is the argument that Alex is making here. This is significant. If it were so, we would see it then. But we do not.

====We’re supposed to believe that a Church that has no existence whatsoever before John Knox has it right, while the Church that was in existence prior to Knox has it wrong.

Mr Knox opinion on the matter is not relevant really, as the New Testament quite clearly states when Christ’s Church was begun. As well as laying out the positions and their requirements.

====Does that make much sense to you?


25 posted on 06/13/2013 10:54:37 AM PDT by Bidimus1
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS

“I merely brought up the question of apostasy through wide spread sin in the church leadership.”

And I am answering your point. You are wrong. The sacraments are efficacious, even if the priest sins. If it were that the sacraments were dependent upon the priest, none of the sacraments would work.

Look at my example of Vicky Gene Robinson. He’s not Catholic. He’s an episcopalian.

You state that someone who is in a Church that has gone so far as to teach that homosexuality is not only not a sin, but is virtuous behaviour should leave, correct?

“Apostasy can happen, indeed Christian apostasy is predicted.”

I agree - look at Vicky Gene Robinson as exhibit A of Apostasy.

“Which the early Protestants in fact did by reason of widespread church sin.”

So what you are saying is that Protestants today who remain in the ECUSA, PCUSA, UMC, the ELCA should leave and join the Catholic church.

See, what you are confusing is sinful behaviour with Apostasy. Apostasy has to do with doctrine, not behaviour. If the Church were to stop being the Church because of sinful behaviour, it never would have lasted long at all.

You speak of the Great Apostasy, and we are in it today - when Protestant churches of all stripes have chosen to bless homosexuality.

You are very right sir - Protestants should leave these churches and become Catholic.


26 posted on 06/13/2013 10:55:36 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge

again...wrong questions...and BTW twisting what I stated.


27 posted on 06/13/2013 10:55:51 AM PDT by caww
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To: Bidimus1

“No The Church continued on as it had before”

So the Apostles selected Bishops, Bishops selected other Bishops. There is historical continuity from the time of the Apostles to now, correct?

“And the only recorded time they did they used requirements as stated in Acts 1 21-22”

Yet, you just said yourself. The Church continued on after the Apostles. The Apostles appointing their successors the Bishops, who had the authority to select their own bishops. Correct?

“Bishops - Elders are not Apostles the means by which a Elder - Bishop - Overseer is chosen does not have the requirements of an Apostle.”

Then the Church died with St. John.

“Mr Knox opinion on the matter is not relevant really”

Alex’s position is that Knox’s definition is the correct definition of apostolicity. Ergo, his position *is* relevent to this argument.

If Knox is wrong about this claim - then we have to go back to the core question here - what is apostolicity? Who has it? Why does the Church dating back to the first century has it when the church dating to the 16th does not?

“as the New Testament quite clearly states when Christ’s Church was begun.”

Which was in the first century. Which church today is this church?


28 posted on 06/13/2013 11:00:38 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww

Answer the question please.

Are you or are you not in unity with fellow protestan Bishop Vicky Gene Robinson?


29 posted on 06/13/2013 11:01:44 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww

You are factually incorrect. While the numbers vary by sources, there are anywhere from 16 to 30,000 different Protestant denominations, individually led. They also espouse differing theology and are not unified.

The Roman Catholic Church consists of a total of 23 Rites, often called Churches. The are all in communion with the Holy See, at Rome. There is no division, merely variations developed through time and location. A person can be fully Syrio-Malabar and fully Catholic, as that is an accepted Rite of the Roman Catholic Church. The 22 Eastern Rites were called by Bl. John Paul II as the “Other Lung” of the Catholic Church.

Roman Catholicism is focused on Christ. The remainder of your sentence is incorrect.


30 posted on 06/13/2013 11:02:06 AM PDT by SpirituTuo
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To: JCBreckenridge; caww
"You said that all protestants are in union with one another."

No, he didn't.

31 posted on 06/13/2013 11:08:00 AM PDT by CatherineofAragon ((Support Christian white males----the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization).)
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To: CatherineofAragon

Ok, so all protestants aren’t in union with one another.

How does one determine which protestants are in union with one another?

Do I need a flowchart?


32 posted on 06/13/2013 11:12:12 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge
You have a definition of apostolicity that is contrary to what Ireneaus and Tertullian claimed. Hence the question. When did this definition that you are advocating here first appear? Who was the first person to make this argument?

Those may be good questions, but IMO you've mistaken me for the author of the article. It's not my definition as I'm not the author, therefore I can't answer them for you. I would direct those questions to the OPC website (I gave a link in post #1), and let the author speak for himself.

33 posted on 06/13/2013 11:12:18 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

Ok, thank you.


34 posted on 06/13/2013 11:13:25 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww
Doesn’t matter which one...

Sure it does since they all believe differently.

The Catholic denomination(sic)

The Catholic Church isn't a denomination.

there are also many branches within the catholic denomination just as with Protestants.

Incorrect. Different Rites not different denominations.

Your post exposes your deficient acumen on the topic which comes as no surprise.

35 posted on 06/13/2013 11:14:30 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro can't pass E-verify)
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To: A.A. Cunningham

There are believers in the catholic denominations as well as the Protestant....the unity comes entirely thru their relationship in and with Christ Jesus...not the membership of any denomination...not the church affiliation...these are simply “the gathering” places and among.

I am not in the business of validating or not your comments or questions. However, it is a wonderful thing to know Christ and who we are accountable to...splitting hairs is senseless when in reality it all boils down to the person Of Christ.


36 posted on 06/13/2013 11:23:42 AM PDT by caww
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To: CatherineofAragon

I am always amazed in these arguments that no one recognizes Mark’s work in Africa and the antiquity of both the Coptic and the Ethiopian churches. In fact both the Eithopean and the Coptic churches may predate Rome.

And then there was Thomas in India ...

We argue from a unique Western perspective.


37 posted on 06/13/2013 11:25:06 AM PDT by Citizen Tom Paine (An old sailor sends)
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To: CatherineofAragon

Thank you Catherine of Arogon....you are paying attention....but then we do know the tactics so often played and can name those tunes in one note...”there’s nothing new under the sun”.


38 posted on 06/13/2013 11:40:23 AM PDT by caww
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To: caww

“the unity comes entirely thru their relationship in and with Christ Jesus”

So how does one determine this? Do you hand out candy to your favourite Christians?


39 posted on 06/13/2013 11:42:26 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge

You need to make sure you quote folks correctly.


40 posted on 06/13/2013 11:43:21 AM PDT by CatherineofAragon ((Support Christian white males----the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization).)
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To: Citizen Tom Paine

Given that the Church in Rome was founded by St. Peter, I can’t see it.


41 posted on 06/13/2013 11:43:39 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: CatherineofAragon

Yes mother.


42 posted on 06/13/2013 11:44:19 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: SpirituTuo

Will say this again...Unity among believers is in Christ Jesus....regardless of their denomination or church association....who leads or who they call themselves.

But I will surely differ with you...there are many differences among the catholic churches....indeed. I would venture saying most catholic denominations do not agree with their gay bishops...nor with the the leaders who include voodoo and various other rites within their denomination..and fully credited by the leadership of the catholic denominations.


43 posted on 06/13/2013 11:45:06 AM PDT by caww
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To: JCBreckenridge

Don’t believe I’m old enough, but :::headpat::::


44 posted on 06/13/2013 11:45:17 AM PDT by CatherineofAragon ((Support Christian white males----the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization).)
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To: JCBreckenridge

<....”So how does one determine this?”.....>

Right question!..one you would not be asking were you connected to those who do know how to determine this.


45 posted on 06/13/2013 11:48:27 AM PDT by caww
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To: caww

DO you have a special brand of candy? That way we can be sure to know the ‘real’ christians from the fake ones.


46 posted on 06/13/2013 11:48:42 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: caww

“Right question!..one you would not be asking were you connected to those who do know how to determine this.”

If you had the answer you would be able to answer the question.

So what is it Caww? How does one determine this?


47 posted on 06/13/2013 11:49:28 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Un Pere, Une Mere, C'est elementaire)
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To: JCBreckenridge
We have achieved the Great Divide between Protestant and Catholic. Your definition of “Apostasy” is hypertechnical, in general, it means a renunciation which can be implicit as well as explicit. One can Apostatize by continued sin as well as make a formal statement. The Catholic Church through the Counter Reformation implicitly recognized its organizational sin and reformed. It is a great question whether or not God recognized its reformation. Mere survival over time is not sufficient as even Satan survives today /p>
48 posted on 06/13/2013 11:50:38 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: CatherineofAragon

Now Catherine of Aragon...be careful accepting the Mother role...I understand catholics see Mary as their mother in charge.


49 posted on 06/13/2013 11:52:59 AM PDT by caww
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To: JCBreckenridge
Answer the question please.

Are you or are you not in unity with fellow protestan Bishop Vicky Gene Robinson?

I normally avoid these discussions as people do not focus on the correct things that make a church the church. However this needs to be addressed, if nothing else as a way to stop you from slandering everyone.

"Vicky" Is not a Christian. it's a self proclaimed homosexual. The two are mutually incompatible.

Protestants are no more in unity with them than Pope Francis is just another homosexual priest molesting altar boys.

Now, are those faggot priests who molested all those kids Catholics? or have they turned their back on God and the church they supposedly belonged to and excommunicated themselves?

So if you can tar all protestants with a faggot non-Christian, then you can be tarred with those faggot child molestors.

Get on to the real issue. We are not called to be Protestant or to be Catholic. We are called to be Christian. You don't have to be a member of any certain church (as all Christians together form the one true Church).

Do you, JCBrekenridge, believe the Jesus is the Son of God and that He suffered, died, was buried and rose again in payment of your sins, and have you accepted that atonement for your sins. Have you made Jesus YOUR Savior? If so, then we are brothers in Christ no matter what church you attend. If not you need to get saved, hell is too hot and eternity lasts too long to play around with this.

The bible never once asks what church someone belongs to, only WHO they belong to. (that is, salvation is an individual issue, not a communal issue)

So, we can continue pissing on each other with trivial and unimportant questions ("My steeple's taller than your steeple". "My 'church' was founded before yours was" etc) or we can get out there and make the world a better place by bringing souls to Jesus.

50 posted on 06/13/2013 11:55:06 AM PDT by John O (God Save America (Please))
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