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Mary of Nazareth As The Bible Defines Her
The Ignorant Fishermen.com ^ | December 20, 2010 | DJP

Posted on 12/20/2010 5:58:54 PM PST by kindred

Monday, This study seeks to present from God's Holy Word what the Bible teaches about Mary of Nazareth, the young Jewish virgin that bore the Messiah, the Savior of the World. In this study we will seek to look at EVERY Bible verse found in the Holy Scriptures that pertains to Mary of Nazareth. Be sure to check out all the links for this study, for they will provide a deeper perspective into the person of Mary.

Introduction . In beginning this study, the clarifying statement should be made that the Bible, God’s infallible (reliable) and immaculate (perfect) Word, is the FINAL AUTHORITY when it comes to ALL matters pertaining to the truth of Christianity, which includes Mary (2 Peter 1:20-21; 2 Timothy 3:16).

The Lord Jesus Christ gave countless warnings to BEWARE false teachers and false teachings. And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man DECEIVE YOU (Gospel of Saint Matthew 24:4).

Saint Paul also warned us to BEWARE of false teachings and fables. Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables (2 Timothy 4:2-4).

Many dear, sincere people trust for their eternal destiny in observing "Christian traditions," performing "good works" and having a "denominational upbringing" instead of BELIEVING and TRUSTING the Word of Almighty God (2 Tim. 3:14-4:5). The Lord Jesus issued serious warnings about practicing the vain traditions of men instead of holding to the sound eternal absolutes and spiritual laws found in Almighty God's Holy Word (St. Matt. 7:21-23).

Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition (St. Mark 7:7-9).

Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men (St. Matthew 15:6b-9).

We also read in God's Word about the positive example of the Bereans. They (The Bereans)received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. Therefore many of them believed" (Acts 17:11b-12a). Again, God's Word is the ABSOLUTE FINAL authority when it comes to any subject or teaching found in Christianity. The Bible states in regard to God's Word: For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven (Psalm 119:89). . Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth forever (Psalm 119:160). Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away (St. Matthew 24:35).

For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe (1 Thess. 2:13).

He that is of God heareth God's words (St. John 8:47). May it be your sincere desire not to allow your own feelings to cloud your reason regarding this very delicate subject relating to Mary of Nazareth. By having faith in Almighty God (Heb. 11:6), i.e., by believing on God and His Word, may the Holy Spirit guide you into all truth (St. John 16:12-13). Whatever your thoughts, traditions or teachings about Mary (or Miriam in the Hebrew) of Nazareth, they MUST be defined by and align themselves with the Holy Scriptures. Again, the objective of this study is to present what God's Holy Word, the Bible, teaches about Mary of Nazareth.

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Rom 10:17).

The Humanity of Mary

And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate (to look with pity on her vile condition) of his handmaiden (slave): for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation (St. Luke 1:45-49).

Mary offered a burnt offering and a sin offering for an atonement after her purification (Leviticus 12:1-8). And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord; (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;) And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons (St. Luke 2:22-24). . These passages reveal that Mary was a sinner in need of a Savior!

The Use of the Term "Woman" by the Lord Jesus in Regard to Mary

Nowhere in the New Testament is there found the occasion where the Lord Jesus called His "human" mother Mary, "Mother." We only find that He called her "Woman" (St. John 2:1-4; 19:25-27). There are distinctions given by the Gospel writers (2 Peter 1:20-21) that reveal Mary as the mother of Jesus’ human nature, but again the term "mother" was never used by Jesus when addressing Mary. We have absolutely NO record of that. Mary was a created being and the Lord Jesus was the Eternal Creator (St. John 1:1-3; Col. 1:16; Heb. 1:1-3). This practice was not belittling to motherhood in general or derogatory to Mary herself in any way, shape or form. The Lord Jesus was helping Mary to understand that the Son of her womb was actually the Son of the Highest sent from Heaven above (St. John 1:1-14; Isaiah 9:6; Micah 5:2). Mary had only given birth to PROVIDE a human body to house the Eternal Person of the Son of God for His great mission here on planet earth (St. John 1:14; Heb. 2:14-15; 10:5, 12:1-3). n, Image Example: (Click links below for a visual image) . The Lord Jesus (The Son of Almighty God) - Click for link . Adam's fallen race which included Mary (Romans 5:12-19). - Clink for link , Jesus was (and is) the Perfect Son of God (St. John 1:1-3), God in the flesh (St. John 1:14) and the Savior of the World - including all humanity and even Mary (St. Luke 1:45-49). This title of "woman" was a constant reminder to and for Mary (Miriam) that Jesus was absolutely different and holy (perfect and set apart). Jesus was not like any of her other children or any other of Adam's IMPERFECT fallen race (St. Luke 1:31-32; Rom. 5:12-19). He was the PERFECT Son of Almighty God dwelling in a PERFECT human body (St. John 8:46; 1 Peter 3:18). The heavenly assignment given to Mary by Almighty God would not be an easy one, as the Holy Scriptures tell us. , And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart (St. Luke 2:18-19).

And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed (St. Luke 2:34-35).

And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spoke unto them. And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart (St. Luke 2:48-51).

And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren? And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother (Mark 3:35).

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home(St. John 19:25-27). . (This last passage is pertinent to understanding why Jesus used the term "woman" when addressing Mary, i.e., to communicate that his relationship with his earthly mother would not be permanent, only temporary.)

The Virgin-Born Birth of The Savior of the World . And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy (Lucifer's) seed and her (Eve's, later Mary's) seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel (Genesis 3:13-15).

Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14).

But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us (St. Matthew 1:20-23).

And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God (Luke 1:31-35). . But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law (Gal 4:4). . Almighty God (the Father) BYPASSED the seed of fallen man by the POWER and OVERSHADOWING of the Holy Spirit (St. Luke 1:35). This Divine action PREVENTED the fallen traits and corruption of Adam's FALLEN race (Gen. 5:3; Romans 3:23; 5:12-19) from CONTAMINATING the PERFECT housing (body of flesh) for the Person of the Son of God to tangibly dwell here on planet earth (Micah 5:2; St. Luke 1:35; St. John 1:14; Heb. 10:5; 1 Peter 1:19). . Image Example: (Click links below for a visual image) .. The Lord Jesus (The Son of Almighty God). - Click for link . Adam's fallen race which included Mary (Romans 5:12-19). - Click for link ' The Non-Perpetual Virginity of Mary after the Lord Jesus' Birth . Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together (i.e., had intimate physical relations), she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not (refers to sexual intimacy of the God-ordained marital union) till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS (St. Matthew 1:18-25).

And she brought forth her firstborn (implies the first with more following after) son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn (St. Luke 2:7).

Mary and Joseph's Children

I am become a stranger to my brothers, and an alien to my mother's children (Psalm 69:8). . And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these parables, he departed thence. And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things? (Matthew 13:53-55). . “When the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him” (St. Mark 6:1-3).

After this he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, and his disciples: and they continued there not many days (St. John 2:12). . His brethren therefore said unto him, Depart hence, and go into Judaea, that thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest. For there is no man that doeth any thing in secret, and he himself seeketh to be known openly. If thou do these things, shew thyself to the world. For neither did his brethren believe in him. Then Jesus said unto them, My time is not yet come: but your time is alway ready. The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil. Go ye up unto this feast: I go not up yet unto this feast; for my time is not yet full come (St. John 7:3-8).

And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother James. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren (Acts 1:13-14).

There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him. And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee. And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren? And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother (St. Mark 3:31-35).

And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where he was laid (St. Mark 15:47).

And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him (St. Mark 16:1).

Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children. When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus’ disciple: He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus (Matthew 27:56-58).

Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother (Galatians 1:19).

Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called: Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied (St. Jude 1:1-2).

The Book of James and the Book of Jude were written by the half-brothers of Jesus, i.e., Mary’s children fathered by Joseph. Also, James the half-brother of Jesus was one of the early leaders of the Church at Jerusalem (Acts 15:13-21).

Mary's Life after the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ . During the crucifixion of Christ on the cross, John is given guardianship of Mary and her family by her firstborn son, Jesus.

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home (St. John 19:26-27).

"Mary and her family were present with the disciples at Pentecost and were also included with the Church at Jerusalem." / And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. (Acts 1:13, 14)

NOTE: All words in bold print in the following section refer directly to the disciples (including Mary).

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (including Mary) in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance (Acts 2:1-4). . And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved (Acts 2:42-47).

"Mary died in Christ and shall be changed at Christ's coming for the Church at the Rapture" - Link

NOTE: All words in bold print in the following section refer to "church age" believers (including Mary).

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:51-57).

Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons (children) of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons (children) of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure (1 John 3:1-3).

And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever (Revelation 22:1-5).

Conclusion

The Scripture verses presented here consisted of ALL the scripture verses that mention Mary of Nazareth. The many traditions of Mary - her intercessory prayers, her immaculate birth and sinless life (or state of perfection), her perpetual virginity, her ascension into Heaven, her immaculate heart, etc. are NOWHERE TO BE FOUND in the Holy Scriptures. Relatively speaking, very little is mentioned about Mary in the New Testament. These false doctrines, teachings, fables and traditions passed down through the centuries have originated and been enlarged upon by the traditions of men and the Catholic Church. These fables were not given by Almighty God. In fact, these teachings contradict the Holy Scriptures and its divine authority. They are at the very heart of Satanic lies and deception.

To again clarify, this study was not done to belittle anyone's personal beliefs, but only to expose the heretical falsehoods pertaining to the church traditions and teachings of Mary of Nazareth. It is our deepest desire to encourage people to BELIEVE the Holy Scriptures and to REJECT any teachings and traditions of men which contradict the Holy Scriptures. May it be your sincere desire to acknowledge Mary as she is; a wonderful and faithful servant of Almighty God (Luke 1:28). As the Second Person of the Triune Godhead, may Jesus Christ ONLY be exalted and lifted up in our hearts and lives.

St. Peter stated in 2 Peter 1: 20-21: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. And St. Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:12-17: Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

The Bible, God’s infallible and immaculate Word, is the ABSOLUTE and FINAL AUTHORITY for all matters relating to spiritual truth (doctrine) about God, Jesus, sin, salvation, Mary, etc. May it be your sincere desire to be governed by the Holy Scriptures and NOT the traditions of men (St. Matt. 15; St. Mark 7). The true (Biblical) Mary would surely want you to!. The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand!


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To: paladinan; Mr Rogers; papertyger

Ergh. Sorry for the bad formatting in that last message!


51 posted on 12/21/2010 2:42:04 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

“Don’t you realize that you’ve dodged the main point altogether? “

Haven’t. No one needs to believe in “The Trinity” to be saved. If they deny the Trinity, they are wrong, but the revelation of God isn’t exactly exhaustive in this area. In time, a person who studies the scriptures will conclude the Trinity, but no one needs to know it for salvation, and a person can be a Christian for years - or until death - without formulating the Trinity.

“1) Do you, for example, need to understand the necessity of Baptism, in order to be saved? St. Peter says that it is Baptism that saves us (1 Peter 3:21), and Jesus Himself says that we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven without it (John 3:5), so I think I’m safe in calling it important. For instance: would it make a difference if you (personally) are baptized, or not?”

Lets look at John 3 again:

“1Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him.” 3Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” 5Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

Jesus is talking about the second birth - a man is born, but he must be born again to enter the Kingdom. He must be “born of water and the Spirit”. Why? “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

The water breaks, and the baby is born. But unless one is born again, of the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. It takes TWO births - water and spirit.

As John the Baptist put it:

“32And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. 33I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.””

The baptism of Jesus is the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

As Paul wrote:

“2Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? 3Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”

That doesn’t mean baptism with water is nothing. I am, after all, a BAPTIST. I believe in following the example we find in Acts, where a believer is baptized with water as soon as water is ready.

“36And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 38And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.” - Acts 8

“30Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” 32And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. 33And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family.” - Acts 16

Now lets look at what Peter wrote:

“...when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. 21Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.”

Notice he says baptism corresponds to the experience of Noah. Water didn’t save Noah from death. It threatened him with death were it not for the Ark. However, water did save him from the evil of the world, taking him away from the sinful society and destroying it in his life.

In corresponding manner, as Peter puts it, baptism saves us from the evil of this world, separating us from it. It isn’t “a removal of dirt from the body”, but “an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ”.

If a man believes in Jesus, even without baptism or a full understanding of the Trinity, then like the thief on the cross, he IS saved. But if we take the example of scripture seriously, when someone converts, we should baptize them right away - not after taking classes, and not waiting for a church service or minister, but right away.

“See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?”

You write: “2) Do you, for example, need to eat the Flesh and drink the Blood of Our Saviour, Jesus Christ, in order to have life within you? (cf. John 6:53) Or doesn’t the “exact definition” matter? (I would think that it would, frankly; if Protestants are wrong about Jesus meaning “acceptance of His Word”, and not a true consumption of the Holy Eucharist, it would seem to make a difference, yes?)”

Yes we do. What did John write?

“35Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.”

So we see that Jesus isn’t referring to the Eucharistic wafer, but coming and believing. “For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”

It is an error to take “51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” as referring to Eucharist. If it did, we could simply give beggars on the street the wafer & wine, and they would have eternal life. Indeed, since everyone who eats the wafer dies physically, it is wrong to take this as a physical fact, rather than understanding what Jesus meant when he said “I am the bread of life.”

“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”

As CS Lewis once put it, the scriptures can be understood by a child, but they are not written primarily for children. It takes a hard heart to read John 6 and conclude that Jesus was talking about the Eucharist wafer and wine.


52 posted on 12/21/2010 3:37:58 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers; paladinan; narses; NYer; D-fendr; papertyger
We may differ on the perpetual virginity of Mary, and each of us will give account to God for what we have believed and done, but I think God will be more concerned with hatred in our hearts than with scoring 100% on a doctrinal test.

Amen! I attended Catechism Classes almost every week for a year with a nephew. I'm his adopted Godfather and the church allowed me and my formerly Catholic wife to stand for him at his confirmation at the beautiful Cathedral of Guadalupe here in Dallas.

During the process, my wife and I became very close friends with a Carmelite nun who was born and raised in Mexico. She's a wonderful woman of great faith.

Many of the families in the class were Hispanic and were fairly new to the United States. One problem that horrifies us and the sister is the difference in Catholicism between the United States and Latin America. Actually, it's really Catholicism in name only.

It's one thing to have a family discussion on FR about Mary's perpetual virginity. It's worth discussing but no one is going to hell for believing or not believing it. However, it's quite another thing to see that many people raised in Latin American churches are de facto polytheists who are a mix of about one-third Christianity and two-thirds indigenous religions.

In the border states, it has become a problem for mainstream Catholic churches to assimilate those from Latin America. As our nun friend has said, her biggest problem is converting the pupils and their parents to Christianity. In Catechism classes, she's more of a missionary than a teacher.

All of us born in the United States -- Protestants and Catholics alike -- are blessed to be here. Because of how God has blessed us, we are held more accountable than those with less understanding and are obliged to the salt and light to the world.


53 posted on 12/21/2010 9:43:52 PM PST by DallasMike
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To: Mr Rogers
[Paladin] Don’t you realize that you’ve dodged the main point altogether? [Mr Rogers] Haven’t. No one needs to believe in “The Trinity” to be saved.

Perhaps you don't remember your original point? You'd said (in essence), "Please don't tell me that the Catholic Church doesn't create new doctrines; [...] no one formally taught Transubstantiation in 500 A.D.!" I replied, "And no one formally taught the Trinity until at least 325 A.D., and you admit that; so the supposed lateness of the word "transubstantiation" proves nothing". You then went off the tracks and started talking about its necessity for salvation (or lack thereof), which is a completely separate point from the "inventing doctrines" idea.

Now that the topic has been refreshed: could you address the original question (i.e. either offer new evidence that the Church "invents new doctrines", or else retract your statement)?

If they deny the Trinity, they are wrong, but the revelation of God isn’t exactly exhaustive in this area.

It isn't "exactly exhaustive" in numerous areas... including the need for repentance (which I assume you, as a Baptist, think is normative for salvation, yes?); but again, that was light-years from the original point.

In time, a person who studies the scriptures will conclude the Trinity,

(*wry look*) Mm-hmm. Try telling that to the Jews, the Muslims, the Jehovah's Witnesses, the Mormons, the Unitarian Pentecostals, and others, all of which have members who've studied the Christian Scriptures. The vast majority of Christendom (i.e. Arianism) rejected the Trinity for generations, as well. You (and I) see it as "self-evident" because it's so familiar to us; but it's not called a "mystery" for nothing; it's hardly intuitive, and hardly self-evident.

[Re: John 3]

Jesus is talking about the second birth - a man is born, but he must be born again to enter the Kingdom. He must be “born of water and the Spirit”. Why? “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” The water breaks, and the baby is born. But unless one is born again, of the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. It takes TWO births - water and spirit.


:) Sorry for the smile, but... you're the second person to put forth that theory to me, and I really had to struggle to believe that the first fellow was *serious*.

Look... I'll give you full marks for cleverness, but: you're essentially saying that Jesus was being utterly redundant, as a sort of rhetorical flourish. It'd be logically equivalent to saying, "to be saved, you need to exist, and then you need to come to Faith"; no one would argue against it, of course, but it'd be rather pointless to say; it's a tautology. It's like saying, "In order to be an even number, something has to be a number, and then it has to be divisible by two without a remainder." It's true, but the first part isn't worth saying. "Born of water" makes much more sense if you follow what the Apostles and the Early Church *did* with that information: they BAPTIZED. You try to compartmentalize the two (e.g. "born of water" means "coming to Faith", and water Baptism was "just an extra ceremony attached for sentimental/ritualistic reasons"), but that makes a hash out of the "plain sense of Scripture". Jesus commanded us to "make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." Isn't it at least remotely possible, given the "plain sense" of Matthew 28:18-20, that Baptism is a necessary component of *HOW* Jesus expects people to become disciples?

Why set one against the other?

Beyond that: are you unaware of the fact that the early Church was unanimous in disagreeing with you on that point? The Apostles and the Early Church Fathers were all of one mind as to the meaning of the John 3:5 (and similar verses') phrase: water baptism. Nowhere does the Bible limit salvation or "coming into discipleship" to "praying the believer's prayer", or some other variant on "believing on Jesus and being saved". Of *course* that's normative; but that doesn't mean that Baptism is somehow "optional". The latter idea is raw opinion, and the Biblical text doesn't support it at all, above and beyond other (more plausible and historically-supported) options.

So... Jesus said that "being born again of water and the Spirit" was necessary (John 3:5), and Jesus commanded us to Baptize (Matthew 28:18-20), and St. Peter says that Baptism saves us (1 Peter 3:21), and the early Church universally accepted this to mean that the graces of Baptism (normatively bestowed in water Baptism) are absolutely necessary for salvation. Compare that to Mr. Rogers, who disagrees, and interprets it differently. Care to explain why I (or anyone else) should take your interpretation as "the right one"?

The baptism of Jesus is the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Of course; with Baptism, the Holy Spirit comes to dwell in one's soul.

As Paul wrote: “Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”

Er... how on earth do you think this applies to the topic at hand? Unless you can point to baptism as a "requirement for salvation" in the Old Law?

That doesn’t mean baptism with water is nothing. I am, after all, a BAPTIST. I believe in following the example we find in Acts, where a believer is baptized with water as soon as water is ready.

But you don't think it's necessary for salvation? The Early Christians did. Heavens, don't you believe the Nicene Creed? "We believe in one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins."

“36And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 38And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.” - Acts 8

Case in point: doesn't this show the urgency and necessity of Baptism? Why didn't St. Philip say, "Yes, yes, Baptism would be nice, but your believer's prayer is all that's necessary for salvation"? Nothing in Acts 8 suggests anything other than the *requirement* of Baptism; the eunuch obviously thought it was fundamental, yes? And St. Philip didn't contradict him or express surprise, did he? You seem to be "going beyond what is written", in order to arrive at your ideas, here.

“30Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” 32And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. 33And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family.” - Acts 16

Right. Repentance and belief are necessary (for those who have actual, personal sin), and Baptism (which saves us, cf. 1 Peter 3:21) is also necessary.

“...when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water. 21Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.” Notice he says baptism corresponds to the experience of Noah. Water didn’t save Noah from death. It threatened him with death were it not for the Ark.

Going "THROUGH" water saved him and his family from earthly death; just as going THROUGH the waters of Baptism (think "immersion") saves us from eternal death. Noah's rescue through the flood was a "biblical type" of Baptism; just as the bronze serpent (which "saved" people who looked at it) is a biblical "type" of Christ; just as the Ark of the Covenant is a biblical "type" of the Blessed Virgin Mary; and so on. I'm not sure how that could be made more clear.

However, water did save him from the evil of the world, taking him away from the sinful society and destroying it in his life.

At the risk of belabouring a point: you *do* notice that you're going far beyond the "plain sense" of the text, in order to arrive at your hypothesis? It takes a rather long stretch to arrive at your interpretation (which the text does not confirm).

In corresponding manner, as Peter puts it, baptism saves us from the evil of this world, separating us from it.

Think this through: HOW does it save us from the evil of this world? By what mechanism? And what evil do you mean? Bad example? Jesus warned us that scandals will inevitably come (Luke 17:1); and that the Church will contain both wheat and tares (Matth 13:24-30), both good fish and bad (Matthew 13:47-50). Suffering? He warned that we should not hope to escape suffering and persecution in this world (John 16:33, etc.). Your idea of "saving us from the evil of the world" seems to be a distinction without a difference.

It isn’t “a removal of dirt from the body”, but “an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ”.

Of course; surely you're aware that the Catholic Church doesn't baptize in an effort to cleanse dirt from the body? If a man believes in Jesus, even without baptism or a full understanding of the Trinity, then like the thief on the cross, he IS saved.

Water Baptism is normative, but there are times when it's not possible (e.g. death, unavailability, etc.). In those cases, such people can be granted (by God) the effects of the Sacrament of Baptism, even if the actual Sacrament is not possible. Consider: what's your "take" on the mentally disabled (or infants who die before reaching the age of reason) who cannot make an act of Faith in Jesus? Are they damned? If "believing on Jesus" is necessary, and they don't make such an act, then they cannot be saved (by your schema), yes? Surely you must admit that God, while normatively working through His Sacraments, is not limited to them... just as God normatively works through the laws of physics/nature, while He isn't limited to them (such as in the case of a physical miracle).

But if we take the example of scripture seriously, when someone converts, we should baptize them right away - not after taking classes, and not waiting for a church service or minister, but right away.

All right. What happens to them if you do not? Is there any ill effect? Any threat to salvation?

You write: “2) Do you, for example, need to eat the Flesh and drink the Blood of Our Saviour, Jesus Christ, in order to have life within you? (cf. John 6:53) Or doesn’t the “exact definition” matter? (I would think that it would, frankly; if Protestants are wrong about Jesus meaning “acceptance of His Word”, and not a true consumption of the Holy Eucharist, it would seem to make a difference, yes?)”

Yes we do. What did John write? “35Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” So we see that Jesus isn’t referring to the Eucharistic wafer, but coming and believing.


Perhaps you could explain to me how the two ("coming and believing") and receiving the Holy Eucharist (which can only BE received worthily if one "comes and believes" first; see 1 Corinthians 11:27-30) are somehow mutually exclusive? The Catholic Church does not hand out the Blessed Sacrament to anyone, willy-nilly; prior faith (and Baptism) are absolutely required.

“For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”

Yes. So... how does that contradict the Eucharist, and its necessary reception (again, within possible limits; God does not demand the impossible of us, such as in the case of someone who was innocently ignorant of the Eucharist)? See above.

It is an error to take “51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” as referring to Eucharist.

You've stated this as your opinion, already; now, you'll need to prove it, in order to make any headway in this matter.

If it did, we could simply give beggars on the street the wafer & wine, and they would have eternal life.

Nonsense. See above; there's a difference between what's NECESSARY and what's SUFFICIENT. Faith is NECESSARY for salvation, but it is not SUFFICIENT (cf. James 2:24, etc.). Baptism is NECESSARY for salvation, but it is not sufficient. The Holy Eucharist is NECESSARY for salvation, but it is not SUFFICIENT. All of the above can be rendered fruitless by personal sin, subsequent betrayal of the Faith, etc. Knowingly and willfully giving the Holy Eucharist to those who didn't already believe (and who weren't already Baptized) would be a sacrilege, and a grave sin.

Indeed, since everyone who eats the wafer dies physically, it is wrong to take this as a physical fact, rather than understanding what Jesus meant when he said “I am the bread of life.”

Come, now! You know, full well, that the Church refers to "eternal life", "never dying", etc., as spiritual (i.e. heavenly) life, yes?

“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”

Keep going:

"53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them." (John 6:53-56)

You might also consult St. Paul on the meaning:

"23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

"27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep." (1 Corinthians 11:23-30)

So... to what, exactly, is St. Paul referring, when he speaks of "eating the bread" and "drinking the cup", where eating and drinking the contents unworthily entails sinning against the Body and Blood of the Lord?

You might also check the writings of the Apostles:

"Let no one eat and drink of your Eucharist but those baptized in the name of the Lord; to this, too the saying of the Lord is applicable: 'Do not give to dogs what is sacred'". (The Didache, Ch. 9:5)

...and the early Church Fathers:

"Consider how contrary to the mind of God are the heterodox in regard to the grace of God which has come to us. They have no regard for charity, none for the widow, the orphan, the oppressed, none for the man in prison, the hungry or the thirsty. They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they do not admit that the Eucharist is the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, the flesh which suffered for our sins and which the Father, in His graciousness, raised from the dead." (St. Ignatius of Antioch, disciple of St. Polycarp, who was a disciple of St. John the Apostle; from "Letter to the Smyrnaeans", paragraph 6. circa 80-110 A.D.)

As CS Lewis once put it, the scriptures can be understood by a child, but they are not written primarily for children.

Yes. Care to explain what you're implying, here? I'd rather not guess...

It takes a hard heart to read John 6 and conclude that Jesus was talking about the Eucharist wafer and wine.

With all due respect, friend: this is one of the most arrogant (and illogical) things I've heard you say. Can you not see that an accusation of "hardness of heart" (unless you meant it as an insult, which I assume isn't the case) could be used against anyone, for anything? Would you be convinced if I said the opposite? "It takes a hard heart to read John 6 and conclude that Jesus was not talking about the Eucharist!" Your case isn't made any stronger by this sort of screed.

(N.B. The Precious Blood is no longer "wine"; the wine ceased to exist when it was changed into the Blood of Christ. Thus, Catholics do not refer to the Precious Blood as "wine".")
54 posted on 12/22/2010 1:01:39 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

New doctrine. I used transubstantiation as an example. The doctrine evolved until a new word was needed to describe it, and to define it as essential belief - enough that people were killed for refusing to accept it.

As I pointed out from the Catholic Encyclopedia, ‘sacred tradition’ evolves until it declares what was previously hidden...to put it in very favorable terms. Referring to the Immaculate Conception as an example, it says, “The revealed truth was indeed in the deposit of truth in the Church, but it was not formulated in explicit terms nor even in clearly equivalent terms; it was enveloped in a more general truth (that e.g. of the all-holiness of Mary), the formula of which might be understood in a more or less absolute sense (exemption from all actual sin, exemption even from original sin). On the other hand, this truth (the exemption of Mary from original sin) may seem in at least apparent conflict with other certain truths (universality of original sin, redemption of all by Christ)...Finally scrutinizing with fresh care the deposit of revelation, they there discovered the pious opinion, hitherto concealed, as far as they were concerned in the more general formula, and, not satisfied to hold it as true, they declared it revealed.”

Yep. Although the Apostle Paul said he taught the whole counsel of God, and John said not to run ahead but to abide in their teaching, the Catholic Church “discovered the pious opinion, hitherto concealed”.

Please be frank about it. Admit that it is finding things not taught as truth before.

Mark Shea describes it thus: “Sacred Tradition is the living and growing truth of Christ contained, not only in Scripture, but in the common teaching, common life, and common worship of the Church. That is why the Tradition that does not change can seem to have changed so much. For this common teaching, life and worship is a living thing-a truth which was planted as a mustard seed in first century Jerusalem and which has not ceased growing since-as our Lord prophesied in Mark 4:30-32. The plant doesn’t look like the seed, but it is more mustardy than ever. And this is an entirely biblical pattern, as we discover when we consider the circumcision controversy in Acts 15.”

He argues that Paul taught a seed, and from it the Catholic Church has revealed a grown bush. But Paul and John said they taught the whole counsel of God, not fragments. To abide in it, not to grow it.

Transubstantiation, the Immaculate Conception, etc were not revealed by the Apostles.

In his essay “An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine”, Cardinal Newman wrote:

“In truth, scanty as the Ante-nicene notices may be of the Papal Supremacy, they are both more numerous and more definite than the adducible testimonies in favour of the Real Presence. The testimonies to the latter are confined to a few passages such as those just quoted. On the other hand, of a passage in St. Justin, Bishop Kaye remarks, “Le Nourry infers that Justin maintained the doctrine of Transubstantiation; it might in my opinion be more plausibly urged in favour of Consubstantiation, since Justin calls the consecrated elements Bread and Wine, though not common bread and wine [Note 22] ... We may therefore conclude that, when he calls them the Body and Blood of Christ, he speaks figuratively.” “Clement,” observes the same author, “says that the Scripture calls wine a mystic symbol of the holy blood ... Clement gives various interpretations of Christ’s expressions in John vi. respecting His flesh and blood; but in no instance does he interpret them literally ... His notion seems to have been that, by partaking of the bread and wine in the Eucharist, the soul of the believer is united to the Spirit, and that by this union the principle of immortality is imparted to the flesh.” [Note 23] “It has been suggested by some,” says Waterland, “that Tertullian understood John vi. merely of faith, or doctrine, or spiritual actions; and it is strenuously denied by others.” After quoting the passage, {25} he adds, “All that one can justly gather from this confused passage is that Tertullian interpreted the bread of life in John vi. of the Word, which he sometimes makes to be vocal, and sometimes substantial, blending the ideas in a very perplexed manner; so that he is no clear authority for construing John vi. of doctrines, &c. All that is certain is that he supposes the Word made flesh, the Word incarnate to be the heavenly bread spoken of in that chapter.” [Note 24] “Origen’s general observation relating to that chapter is, that it must not be literally, but figuratively understood.” [Note 25] Again, “It is plain enough that Eusebius followed Origen in this matter, and that both of them favoured the same mystical or allegorical construction; whether constantly and uniformly I need not say.” [Note 26] I will but add the incidental testimony afforded on a late occasion:—how far the Anglican doctrine of the Eucharist depends on the times before the Nicene Council, how far on the times after it, may be gathered from the circumstance that, when a memorable Sermon [Note 27] was published on the subject, out of about one hundred and forty passages from the Fathers appended in the notes, not in formal proof, but in general illustration, only fifteen were taken from Ante-nicene writers.”

Think for a moment about the very TITLE of his essay: An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine.

That is what I’m saying - that Catholic doctrine develops. What wasn’t known, now is - according to Catholics. And while I think Newman wrote it prior to becoming a Catholic, consider Shea’s statement: “Sacred Tradition is the living and growing truth...”

Those who say the Constitution is a living document don’t do so because they want to abide in it. They do so to escape it. Think about it.

Regarding baptism, you ask, “Why set one against the other?”

Because Jesus was answering Nicodemus. In context:

“Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”

Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’”

Born again. Do you doubt that the FIRST birth Jesus is referring to is physical birth? Born again requires the first birth to be physical birth, and Jesus is saying (to a Jew, remember, one of God’s Chosen People) that it isn’t enough to be born a Jew, but you must be born AGAIN.

To suggest Jesus was interjecting water baptism in the middle of a discussion on needing more that physical birth is silly. Water baptism has no role in the discussion.

You must be born again. Physical birth as a Jew won’t suffice, you must also be born again of the Spirit. Two births - physical, and spiritual.

THAT is why I say the water refers to childbirth. It fits in the context of needing two births.

You write: “Going “THROUGH” water saved him and his family from earthly death; just as going THROUGH the waters of Baptism (think “immersion”) saves us from eternal death.”

No. Noah wasn’t saved from death by water. The threat of death WAS the water - a flood, remember? During a flood, water doesn’t save you from death. It DOES force you to go elsewhere. It separated Noah from the evil world.

In like manner, water baptism doesn’t save us from death, but separates us from the world around us be declaring our repentance and decision to be born again as new creations. It saves us FROM THE WORLD.

As for the Eucharist, Newman makes mention of it above. If it is the wafer and wine that truly becomes the blood and flesh of Jesus, and all who partake are saved, then we could give it to street people and save them apart from their will. It takes a hard heart to believe that Jesus, answering a question of the Jews, was instituting the Eucharist (Thanksgiving) and saying it literally becomes his blood and flesh, and saves anyone who partakes.

So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

35Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. 36But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.

40For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”

48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 50 This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. 51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”

56Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. 57As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like the bread the fathers ate and died. Whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”

Jesus is using the miracle of the manna to tell the Jews, in response to their argument, that God HAS sent a sign: Jesus, the Bread of Life. There isn’t a hint of transubstantiation in there...


55 posted on 12/22/2010 1:51:10 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: papertyger
Find me the verse that says Jesus gave authority to a book instead of a Church, and I’ll regard you as something more than a religious flim-flam artist.

There's a tagline just waiting to happen.

56 posted on 12/22/2010 1:56:49 PM PST by WrightWings (Remember, Remember, the Fifth of November...)
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To: Mr Rogers
Jesus is using the miracle of the manna to tell the Jews, in response to their argument, that God HAS sent a sign: Jesus, the Bread of Life. There isn’t a hint of transubstantiation in there...

If youread all of John 6, you see the Jews grumbling over Jesus' statements that they must eat his flesh, finding it a hard statement to understand. The translation of Jesus' words is very literal,i.e., to chew or gnaw. I believe that Jesus repeats himself 3 times on this point to the Jews growing consternation. He does not say to them that they are takinghim to literally, like when he clarifies his statements about being "born again."

Ultimately these disciples leaave him an d no longer follow him . If he was speaking figuratively, why would they leave? Because he wasn't.

57 posted on 12/22/2010 2:18:32 PM PST by lawdave
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To: lawdave
"He does not say to them that they are takinghim to literally, like when he clarifies his statements about being "born again." "

25When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, "Rabbi, when did you come here?" 26Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. 27 Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal."

"61But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, "Do you take offense at this? 62Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64But there are some of you who do not believe." (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) 65And he said, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father."

66 After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him. 67So Jesus said to the Twelve, "Do you want to go away as well?" 68Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, 69and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God."

This was a test for those following Jesus. It came right after the feeding of the 5000. Those who were looking for bread or an earthly king left. Those who believed remained.

Jesus was plenty clear.

"28Then they said to him, "What must we do, to be doing the works of God?" 29Jesus answered them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent." 30So they said to him, "Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness..."

Jesus was talking about belief. THEY were looking for miracles. Jesus didn't WANT to keep disciples who wanted a good show...

Nicodemus, on the other hand, was asking sincerely. "39 Nicodemus also, who earlier had come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds in weight. 40So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen cloths with the spices..." - John 19

58 posted on 12/22/2010 2:39:38 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: WrightWings; papertyger

“Find me the verse that says Jesus gave authority to a book instead of a Church, and I’ll regard you as something more than a religious flim-flam artist.”

“1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” 4But he answered, “It is written,

“’Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple 6and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written,

“’He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “’On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”

7Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.”

10Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written,

“’You shall worship the Lord your God
and him only shall you serve.’”

11Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.” — Matt 4


59 posted on 12/22/2010 2:44:42 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: paladinan

You might also consult St. Paul on the meaning:

“23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

“27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep.” (1 Corinthians 11:23-30)

So... to what, exactly, is St. Paul referring, when he speaks of “eating the bread” and “drinking the cup”, where eating and drinking the contents unworthily entails sinning against the Body and Blood of the Lord?


IN CONTEXT, what you cite follows this:

“17But in the following instructions I do not commend you, because when you come together it is not for the better but for the worse. 18For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, I hear that there are divisions among you. And I believe it in part, 19for there must be factions among you in order that those who are genuine among you may be recognized. 20When you come together, it is not the Lord’s supper that you eat. 21For in eating, each one goes ahead with his own meal. One goes hungry, another gets drunk. 22What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God and humiliate those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I commend you in this? No, I will not.”

They are using the Eucharist as an excuse to show off and to get drunk!

And a few paragraphs later Paul writes, “12For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body— Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.

14For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.”

The Body being sinned against in 1 Corinthians 11 is the Body of Christ - the CHURCH!

They should be doing it thus: “do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me” and “do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”

Instead of remember Jesus, and giving thanks (eucharist) for what He did, they profane it by getting drunk, showing off and despising their fellow congregants - the Body of Christ. It is a holy time, not a time for drunken behavior. It despises the sacrifice of Jesus, and it despises his body the Church.


60 posted on 12/22/2010 2:53:42 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: kindred
The Scripture verses presented here consisted of ALL the scripture verses that mention Mary of Nazareth.

It looks like the author forgot to mention Luke 1:43 where Elizabeth, the wife of a Jewish priest who, together with her were both righteous in the sight of God, obeying all the Lord's commands and decrees blamelessly, describes Mary as being "the mother of my Lord," that is, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the King of Glory, the Master of the Universe:
When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”

61 posted on 12/22/2010 2:56:03 PM PST by aruanan
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To: kindred

Mary was the mother of Jesus, the 2nd person of the Trinity, the Word made flesh. That’s all I need to know. Thanks be to God.


62 posted on 12/22/2010 3:06:26 PM PST by ex-snook ("Above all things, truth beareth away the victory")
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To: Mr Rogers
Sorry for the delay; I'll need to wait until tomorrow or so, for a more fulsome reply. But one quick note:

The Body being sinned against in 1 Corinthians 11 is the Body of Christ - the CHURCH!

Nice try... but did you forget "the Blood of Christ"? Unless you can find a Scripture reference for the Church being called "the Blood", against which the Corinthians were sinning (among other problems, which I'll try to itemize tomorrow), you'll need to try again.

And of COURSE, the problem in 1 Cor 11 was the drunken revelry, gluttony and selfishness during the Holy Eucharist! But I don't see how that advances your case; don't you see how such behaviour would profane the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, even more than it would profane a sort of "vague, general presence" of Christ in His Church? If such profanation would be evil in either context, how do you settle your mind on WHICH context (Eucharist = True Body and Blood vs. Eucharist = mere symbol)?

Also: no comments on the quotes from the Early Church? I've yet to hear an explanation of why you prefer Luther's explanation to theirs...
63 posted on 12/22/2010 7:16:54 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

1 Cor 11 is about discipline and order in the church. Their drunken behavior and lack of concern for others dishonored both Jesus and the Church.

Paul wasn’t saying the bread and wine became the flesh and blood of Jesus, because we are to do it “in remembrance” of Jesus. We are not partaking of the sacrifice of Jesus, for it is not an eternal ongoing sacrifice, as Hebrews points out quite emphatically - and you don’t “remember” something you are doing.

If a football player picks up a game ball he won years ago and remembers, he is NOT playing the game still. He is remembering, as Paul tells the Corinthians to do.

But in their disregard for others, they fail to discern that the church is the body of Christ, and the individuals are the members of one body. It is a recurring theme in 1 Corinthians.

“For I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, 2and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3and all ate the same spiritual food, 4and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. 5Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.” - 1 Cor 10, ref Ex 17: “6 Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb, and you shall strike the rock, and water shall come out of it, and the people will drink.” And Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel.”

Was that water the blood of Christ, or any part of Christ’s body? Of course not, but it was a unifying physical representation of God’s provision for them. They were united together in God’s presence, but the rock was not actually Jesus Christ himself.

Paul goes on in chapter 10 to remind them that the sacrifice of thanksgiving (eucharist) identifies them with and unites them in obedience to Jesus, just as pagans are united to what they worship:

“15I speak as to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. 16 The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? 17Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread. 18Consider the people of Israel: are not those who eat the sacrifices participants in the altar? 19What do I imply then? That food offered to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? 20No, I imply that what pagans sacrifice they offer to demons and not to God. I do not want you to be participants with demons. 21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. 22 Shall we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than he?” - 1 Cor 10

I doubt idol sacrifices are transubstantiated into the flesh of demons, or demon blood. But to partake is to identify with the demons, to join their cause and show submission to them. As Paul says, “That food offered to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? 20No, I imply that what pagans sacrifice they offer to demons and not to God.”

The offering is not transubstantiated, but it unites the partakers with their ‘god’.

Chapter 10 finishes with a call to unity:

” 31So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 32 Give no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, 33just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved.”

Chapter 11 continues with concern for proper behavior in the church, covering (forgive the pun) women and then the Lord’s Supper.

Chapter 12 continues on with the unity of the body in spiritual gifts. Chapter after chapter describes our unity as one body, and how we identify ourselves as part of that body.

With the example of pagan sacrifices just about a paragraph earlier, Paul says, “For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord.

Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.”

I fail to see how anyone reading this in context would conclude that Paul, for one verse, turns the spiritual uniting of man with God (the parting of the Red Sea, the rock at Horeb, partaking in a common sacrifice and using spiritual gifts to uplift all) into transubstantiation.

“But I don’t see how that advances your case; don’t you see how such behaviour would profane the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, even more than it would profane a sort of “vague, general presence” of Christ in His Church?”

Yet the examples that precede it are examples of a spiritual unifying of the Jews during the exodus, pagans in their sacrifices, and us in remembering the Lord’s death. I fail to see why all the others refer to spiritual connections, while this one sentence suddenly pops out of the text and discusses transubstantiation.

Context. When you have a question about scripture, start by reading the chapters before and after.

“Also: no comments on the quotes from the Early Church? I’ve yet to hear an explanation of why you prefer Luther’s explanation to theirs...”

As Cardinal Newman pointed out, the early church fathers were all over on ‘real presence’, and do NOT support transubstantiation. I see no reason to repeat what I already cited.


Verse 4. And did all drink the same spiritual drink. The idea here is essentially the same as in the previous verse, that they had been highly favoured of God, and enjoyed tokens of the Divine care and guardianship. That was manifested in the miraculous supply of water in the desert, thus showing that they were under the Divine protection, and were objects of the Divine favour. There can be no doubt that by “spiritual drink” here the apostle refers to the water that was made to gush from the rock that was smitten by Moses, Exodus 17:6; Numbers 20:11. Why this is called “spiritual” has been a subject on which there has been much difference of opinion. It cannot be because there was anything peculiar in the nature of the water, for it was evidently real water, fitted to allay their thirst. There is no evidence, as many have supposed, that there was a reference in this to the drink used in the Lord’s Supper. But it must mean that it was bestowed in a miraculous and supernatural manner; and the word “spiritual” must be used in the sense of supernatural, or that which is immediately given by God. Spiritual blessings thus stand opposed to natural and temporal blessings, and the former denote those which are immediately given by God as an evidence of the Divine favour. That the Jews used the word “spiritual” in this manner is evident from the writings of the Rabbins. Thus they called the manna “spiritual food,” (Yade Mose in Shemor Rabba, fol. 109, 3 ;) and their sacrifices they called “spiritual bread,” (Tzeror Hammor, fol. 93,2.)—Gill. The drink therefore, here referred to, was that bestowed in a supernatural manner, and as a proof of the Divine favour.

For they drank of that spiritual Rock. Of the waters which flowed from that rock. The Rock here is called “spiritual,” not from anything peculiar in the nature of the rock, but because it was the source to them of supernatural mercies, and became thus the emblem and demonstration of the Divine favour, and of spiritual mercies, conferred upon them by God.

http://www.studylight.org/com/bnn/view.cgi?book=1co&chapter=010


64 posted on 12/22/2010 8:25:06 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: paladinan

Another commentary:

Those, therefore, who treated the symbols of his body and blood with profaneness and contempt were united in spirit with those who put him to death. They evinced the same feelings towards the Lord Jesus that his murderers did. They treated him with scorn, profaneness, and derision; and showed that with the same spirit they would have joined in the act of murdering the Son of God. They would evince their hostility to the Saviour himself as far as they could do, by showing contempt for the memorials of his body and blood. The apostle does by no means, however, as I understand him, mean to say that any of the Corinthians had been thus guilty of his body and blood. He does not charge on them this murderous-intention. But he states what is the fair and obvious construction which is to be put on a wanton disrespect for the Lord’s Supper. And the design is to guard them, and all others, against this sin. There can be no doubt that those who celebrate his death in mockery and derision are held guilty of his body and blood. They show that they have the spirit of his murderers; they evince it in the most awful way possible; and they who would thus join in a profane celebration of the Lord’s Supper would have joined in the cry, “Crucify him, crucify him.” For it is a most fearful and solemn act to trifle with sacred things; and especially to hold up to derision and scorn, the bitter sorrows by which the Son of God accomplished the redemption of the world.

http://www.studylight.org/com/bnn/view.cgi?book=1co&chapter=011

This interpretation is consistent with the idea, expressed several times before, that we identify and become one with others by our acts - and we can identify with the Lord’s body, or with his slayers. If we do the latter, is there any reason to doubt that God will judge us?


65 posted on 12/22/2010 8:33:12 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers

I’m still hoping to get a break from the craziness of today, to get a fuller reply to you... but for now, let me summarize my thoughts on these points:

1) You appeal repeatedly to a “plain sense of Scripture”, but you don’t seem to realize how subjective a standard that can be, and how question-begging it is. If one faithful, well-informed Christian says (after much prayer and study) that “the plain sense of Scripture is [x]” and another faithful, well-informed Christian says (after much prayer and study) that “the plain sense of Scripture is [not x]”, that creates a bit of a problem which cannot be settled by mere appeals to emotion, to personal preference, or the like (and certainly not by puerile, spiritualized playground taunts of “hard-heartedness” on the part of those who disagree with you).

2) Your appeals to Scripture completely beg the question of the CONTENTS of Scripture. You, as a Protestant, presumably follow the Protestant 66-book canon of Scripture, yes? Why? How do you know that the Letter of James is inspired Scripture (Luther didn’t think it was), and that the Second Book of Maccabees isn’t? “Scripture alone” is helpless to determine the contents of Scripture; surely you can see that?

3) You presume to criticize Catholic teaching, but every attempt you’ve made has proven to be a straw man; you simply don’t have a clear grasp of what you’re trying to refute. E.g. your portrayal of Sacred Tradition as (essentially) a “blank check” which the Vatican can use to “invent” whatever it likes is simply an ad hominem canard, with no proof behind it at all. (To illustrate: since you presume to set yourself up as your own “final authority” for interpreting Scripture, how would that prevent you from interpreting any part of the Bible to mean whatever pleases you—e.g. your denial of the Eucharist, despite overwhelming Biblical proof, the moral unanimity of the Early Church, and 2000 years of Church teaching against your opinion?)

As an example: for me, when Jesus says of the Eucharist, “This is My Body” and “This is My Blood”, and the Bible repeats it—clearly, unambiguously, and without qualifiers—(cf. Matthew 26:26ff, Mark 14:22ff, Luke 22:19ff, 1 Corinthians 11:24ff, etc.), I take the “plain sense of Scripture” to mean that the Eucharist (i.e. what used to be bread and wine) is exactly what He says it says: His Body. You don’t, and you proceed to tie yourself into a pretzel trying to explain away what any child could easily see. Jesus took the bread, blessed and broke it, and said, “This is My Body” of the bread of that last Passover Seder; and He said “the Bread that I will give is My Flesh, for the life of the world” (cf John 6:51); and that true teaching is passed on, and on, for 2000 unbroken years, to us who do not find it “too hard of a saying” and refuse to believe (cf. John 6). If Jesus had meant merely to “come to Him and believe”, then He would hardly have allowed most of His disciples to leave Him on the basis of a simple misunderstanding, nor would He have failed to explain the “true meaning” to the Twelve, as in other cases of misunderstood “parables”.

So... you appeal to your own fallible interpretation of a book for whose contents you cannot account (i.e. how did the books of the Bible get chosen, and by whom, and on what authority?), you restrict yourself to that book alone (even when that book does not require such, and you flatly contradict yourself by following that “sola Scriptura” requirement), and you reject the very Church, founded upon St. Peter, Whom Jesus established specifically for the purpose of protecting and carrying on His Revelation (both written and oral), Who has existed in unbroken succession since the time of Christ. Given the above, I hope you’ll understand why I won’t simply take your word for what this-or-that bit of Scripture means.

The Church claims to be infallible in its transmission of the Faith (and has an unbroken continuity of teachings whose core content, while clarified for different ages, has NEVER changed in essence, nor has it ever contradicted itself within); while you claim to be fallible. Can you see why I’d trust the Church, rather than (no offense intended) your own views, or the views of anyone else who presumes to set themselves up as their own “private magisterium”?


66 posted on 12/23/2010 10:42:57 AM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

1 - I don’t worry much about where scripture is disputed in interpretation. I think it is silly to say that Mary remained a virgin, but if someone wants to ignore the obvious meaning of brother and sister for cousin...well, it denies no central doctrine of Christianity, so I guess it is between God and them.

I assume some of my interpretations are wrong, but I’ll let God handle my correction. I suspect many of our disputes will seem silly when we see God.

2 - Canon. Luther did NOT reject James as scripture, but the reality is that every man will have to determine what they accept as scripture. I cannot prevent the Mormons from adding books. I can only tell them I do not agree and won’t accept those books as having any authority.

The Old Testament was accepted at the time of Jesus, and early Christians accepted the gospels, the writings of Paul, Acts, 1 Peter and 1 John as scripture almost as soon as the ink was dry. I would be hard pressed to know what critical doctrine can only be found in the remaining NT books.

The Apocrypha has long been in dispute. Up until the Council of Trent, many considered it good enough for reading, but not good enough for determining doctrine. Jerome didn’t think much of it, either. Until the Council of Trent, it was acceptable for Catholics to question it, and some argue that the Council of Trent left open the possibility of two levels of ‘scripture’ (although scripture says “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”

3 “E.g. your portrayal of Sacred Tradition as (essentially) a “blank check” which the Vatican can use to “invent” whatever it likes is simply an ad hominem canard, with no proof behind it at all.”

That is not what I said. I did provide quotes from Mark Shea & the Catholic Encyclopedia to show that it ‘reveals truths previously hidden’, and that the process is one of evolution.

Of course, if you suggest Sacred Tradition is fixed, then I’m sure you can provide an authoritative listing of true sacred tradition. But the problem is that everyone KNOWS that transubstantiation wasn’t passed down from Peter to his successors in whispers, waiting for someone to reveal it at a later date. And if it didn’t come down from the Apostles, then how could John say to abide in the teaching already given?

4 “If Jesus had meant merely to “come to Him and believe”, then He would hardly have allowed most of His disciples to leave Him on the basis of a simple misunderstanding...”

Already answered. Jesus said the people following him were NOT believers all, but that many were unbelievers following because of the feeding of the 5000.

“Other boats from Tiberias came near the place where they had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 So when the crowd saw that Jesus was not there, nor his disciples, they themselves got into the boats and went to Capernaum, seeking Jesus.

25When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you come here?” 26Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. 27 Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you.”

They then make it clear they have no interest in following God. When they bring up manna in the wilderness, Jesus responds,””Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world...I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. 36But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe.”

As it says in verse 64, “For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe...”

However, the plain meaning of scripture can be discussed. You say it refers to the Eucharist, although no one present knew anything about the Lord’s Supper. I say it was a response to the Jews bringing up manna, with Jesus telling them HE was the sign of God, and they needed to believe.

I’ll let anyone else reading this thread decide which is more likely. Neither of us is likely to convince the other, so we need to leave that correction, to either or both of us, to God. We will both give account of our actions to God.

5 - “So... you appeal to your own fallible interpretation of a book for whose contents you cannot account (i.e. how did the books of the Bible get chosen, and by whom, and on what authority?)”

Actually, see this thread I posted a while back:

How We Got the New Testament - 2 1/2 Views (LONG!)

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2320483/posts

It gives you the Protestant and Orthodox answers to those questions.

6 - “Can you see why I’d trust the Church, rather than (no offense intended) your own views, or the views of anyone else who presumes to set themselves up as their own “private magisterium”?”

Peter wasn’t the Vicar of Christ. The Holy Spirit is. You can appeal to a church that killed Wycliffe & Tyndale for spreading the scriptures to the common man, and that has changed its doctrine, to include the primacy of the Pope, transubstantiation, Purgatory, Indulgences, etc. I’ll appeal to the Holy Spirit and scripture, which is where the Apostles seemed content to leave authority.


67 posted on 12/23/2010 12:21:50 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers
Apologies for the length of this, but: deep topics sometimes require depths of text.

I don’t worry much about where scripture is disputed in interpretation.

(!) I'm not quite sure what to say, in reply to that. You do realize that this approach would neutralize the vast majority of the Bible, don't you? Some of the more... er... "ambitious" (read: heretical) proponents of the historical-critical method of analyzing Scripture, for example, are convinced that the only saying which can be verified (beyond reasonable doubt--whatever that means, to them!) as truly spoken by Jesus was "Amen"! And that doesn't even touch interpretation! Rudolf Bultmann, for example, was convinced that one could read and believe the Gospels without believing in a literal, bodily resurrection of Christ from the dead; he proposed that the stories of the resurrection really referred to the "Easter Faith" of the Apostles, which could (somehow) still endure even if Jesus' Body were to be found in the tomb. No... if you disregard the "contested bits" of Scripture, you jettison the whole thing, I'm afraid! Seriously: what IS the core content of your faith, and how do you arrive at certainly about it?

I assume some of my interpretations are wrong, but I’ll let God handle my correction. I suspect many of our disputes will seem silly when we see God.

Some might. It doesn't follow that ALL of them will be (some might be make-or-break issues of eternal salvation or damnation!), or that we shouldn't wrestle with them... unless you think the Gospel is completely irrelevant, and there's no such thing as damnation? (You'd be a very singular sort of Baptist, if you do believe that!)

2 - Canon. Luther did NOT reject James as scripture,

He rejected it as INSPIRED Scripture (i.e. worthy of being in the Biblical canon, written by an Apostle), and he claimed that it flatly contradicted St. Paul (William Barclay, The Daily Study Bible Series, The Letters of James and Peter, Revised Edition, Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville, KY, 1976, p. 7). He also tried to remove Esther, Hebrews, Jude and Revelation (mainly for doctrinal reasons... as in Revelation 20:12-13, where it insists that the dead will be judged according to their *works*, etc.). Apparently, he didn't see the canon of Scripture to be as "self-evident" as you apparently see it to be. So again: how do you arrive at your conclusion (i.e. the 66-book canon = true and complete Bible)?

but the reality is that every man will have to determine what they accept as scripture. I cannot prevent the Mormons from adding books. I can only tell them I do not agree and won’t accept those books as having any authority.

Ah. But you'll stop short of saying that they're objectively wrong, and that your view is objectively right? And if someone else drops Romans from the Bible, for example, you won't quibble about such a triviality? What in the Bible ARE you prepared to defend as being objectively true and divinely inspired? (And I must say: you're the first Baptist I've ever met who--and I've met many (my brother is one, in fact)--was so lackadaisical about the canon of Scripture!)

The Old Testament was accepted at the time of Jesus,

That's a bit of an oversimplification. There were two distinct canons of the Old Testament: the Palestinian Canon (39 books), and the Septuagint (46 books)--both of which were accepted as valid, in general. It wasn't until after the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, and the subsequent fierce move to consolidate/salvage Jewish identity versus the rest of the Gentile world, that the Septuagint (especially with its 1 Maccabees, which praises the Romans) was rejected by many of the non-Christian Jews of the time.

and early Christians accepted the gospels, the writings of Paul, Acts, 1 Peter and 1 John as scripture almost as soon as the ink was dry.

This is also a dreadful oversimplification, since there were scores of books which were also in "competition" for inclusion--some of which were likewise accepted quickly, and with enthusiasm, by many people (e.g. Gospel of Thomas, Shepherd of Hermas, 1 Clement, the Acts of Paul, Paul's 3rd Epistle to the Corinthians, etc.). It'd be rather careless (and glib) to say that "the Gospels and the writings of Paul" were accepted, when it was uncertain which Gospels, and which of "Paul's writings", were authentic!

I would be hard pressed to know what critical doctrine can only be found in the remaining NT books.

That's rather reductionist and casual of you, I must say! Perhaps you might start a FR thread and ask, "What's so great about the Book of Revelation, anyway?", and watch the reaction? :) But surely you see that you already have a preconceived notion of "critical doctrines", yes? From where did you get them, if not from the Bible? And if from the Bible, how do you know the Bible is complete, or that some of the books you find to be "critical" are truly inspired Scripture? Because the early Church says so? They accepted the Eucharist, as well, but you somehow find the will to reject THAT. I admit to being baffled by your approach, here. For example: you apparently hold to the ideas that Romans is inspired Scripture; but you won't tell me WHY you think so. Care to make another attempt?

The Apocrypha has long been in dispute. Up until the Council of Trent, many considered it good enough for reading, but not good enough for determining doctrine. Jerome didn’t think much of it, either. Until the Council of Trent, it was acceptable for Catholics to question it, and some argue that the Council of Trent left open the possibility of two levels of ‘scripture’ (although scripture says “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”

(*sigh*) See, here's where I'm trying hard to believe that you're not being deliberately disingenuous: on one hand, you say, "Some believe that ___" (though the "___" is not supported by Catholic teaching, at all), and on the other hand, you say, "But I think that contradicts Scripture on ___", and leave the implication that the Church has somehow crashed Herself into a reef! Would it help if I said that your parenthetical "some argue ___" is contrary to Catholic doctrine, and provably so, cf. the documents of the Council of Trent?

[Paladin]
3 “E.g. your portrayal of Sacred Tradition as (essentially) a “blank check” which the Vatican can use to “invent” whatever it likes is simply an ad hominem canard, with no proof behind it at all.”

[Mr. Rogers]
That is not what I said.


Don't you remember saying, "Sounds to me like a “Living Constitution”, that changes meaning as required to fit the judges opinions..."...? I'm not sure how else to interpret a statement like that.

I did provide quotes from Mark Shea & the Catholic Encyclopedia to show that it ‘reveals truths previously hidden’, and that the process is one of evolution.

I never denied that. I denied your further assertion that Sacred Tradition was as malleable as its "judges" wished it to be. The Church explicitly denies that charge (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 86).

[Paladin]
“If Jesus had meant merely to “come to Him and believe”, then He would hardly have allowed most of His disciples to leave Him on the basis of a simple misunderstanding...”

[Mr Rogers]
Already answered. Jesus said the people following him were NOT believers all, but that many were unbelievers following because of the feeding of the 5000.


First: He said that "there are SOME among you who do not believe"; He didn't say ALL. Second, you're assuming (without warrant) that the "disbelief" somehow had not involved disbelief in what He had just SAID! (You'll note that no one expressed significant incredulity before He started speaking specifically about eating His Body and drinking His Blood? Did you think that was mere coincidence?)

As it says in verse 64, “For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe...”

Yes... but: did not believe WHAT? That's our key disagreement, I think.

However, the plain meaning of scripture can be discussed. You say it refers to the Eucharist, although no one present knew anything about the Lord’s Supper.

Aside from Jesus, of course.

I say it was a response to the Jews bringing up manna, with Jesus telling them HE was the sign of God, and they needed to believe.

Then why not SAY that? Did you miss the reactions of horror and disgust from the crowd when they first started to argue? "How can this man give us His FLESH to eat?!?" It's patently obvious that this is the focal point of the crowd's resistance: the apparent reference to cannibalism; and a quick explanation about the so-called "metaphorical meaning" would have resolved that particular gripe, straight away. And again: believe WHAT?

<>I’ll let anyone else reading this thread decide which is more likely.

You're welcome to do so... but I'll note that you'd have to ignore a great deal of John 6, and twist the meaning of much of the rest, to avoid the fact that the John 6 crowd was upset about Jesus' "hard saying" about "giving His Flesh to eat". Do you seriously not see this?

Neither of us is likely to convince the other, so we need to leave that correction, to either or both of us, to God. We will both give account of our actions to God.

Well... if that means "I'm no longer interested in debating the topic", then: fair enough. But I don't think we've hit the bottom of the issue, yet. There IS such a thing as objective truth, and (if we hope to believe anything at all) we can access it in a trustworthy manner. God wouldn't have set us adrift in a sea of agnosticism and relativism (i.e. "every man for himself"); He must have left us a sure way to know the path to salvation (and more specifically than a glib, "Yes, it's Jesus!" We know that; now, we need to know what that MEANS, and how to appropriate that knowledge to the benefit of our souls, and the souls of others).

[Paladin]
“So... you appeal to your own fallible interpretation of a book for whose contents you cannot account (i.e. how did the books of the Bible get chosen, and by whom, and on what authority?)”

[Mr Rogers]
Actually, see this thread I posted a while back: How We Got the New Testament - 2 1/2 Views (LONG!)


I read a bit of it (and skimmed the rest); and it leaves the very same questions begged or unanswered. It does not presume to say with certainty which Biblical books are "real" Biblical books (i.e. divinely inspired); it merely appealed to tradition and popularity (two fallacies), and any further appeals to "sola Scriptura" would be circular, self-contradictory and useless. Unless you're willing to play the agnostic, you'll have to answer the fundamental question: "How do I know that the Bible is really the Bible, and that the correct Books were included?" I assert that you (perhaps unknowingly) inherited it from the Catholic Church, Who was led (through various councils and papal pronouncements) to settle the Canon of Scripture, and make the declaration with whatever solemnity the times might have needed.

Peter wasn’t the Vicar of Christ.

Christ, the Bible, and the early Church all soundly disagree with you. St. Peter was given the office of "prime minister" of the Kingdom of Christ (which was the fulfillment of the Kingdom of David); Look at Isaiah 22:22ff, and compare the wording to Matthew 16:18-20, and you may see what I mean: the "Keys to the Kingdom" aren't just words.

The Holy Spirit is.

(??) How on earth do you get that? The Holy Spirit is God, Himself--the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity! He's no more Christ's vicar (i.e. a subordinate who has been deputized to act with the ruler's authority) than Christ is the vicar of the Holy Spirit!

You can appeal to a church that killed Wycliffe & Tyndale for spreading the scriptures to the common man,

Ahem. I don't suppose you might research some of this, friend? Wycliffe died of a stroke, on December 28, 1384; neither the Catholic Church nor anyone else killed him. Even Tyndale was not killed by the Catholic Church, and his death was not due to a mere "spreading the Scriptures to the common man" (which would have been fine, had he distributed one of the AUTHORIZED English (or other) translations; he was ultimately executed by the Holy Roman Empire (not the Church) after having made enemies of everyone from the Emperor to King Henry VIII (which was particularly ironic, given that Tyndale is often lionized in modern Anglican circles as "the Father of the English Bible"... which is blithering nonsense; not only were there several approved English translations already in existence, but the founder of Anglicanism ordered Tyndale's "bible" burned throughout all of England. It was a theological and translative train-wreck, and it would have misled untold numbers of people in matters critical to salvation. (If you'll forgive my saying so: both Catholics and Protestants alike were, in past eras, far less blase about teaching the true faith and avoiding (what they saw as) error than you've described yourself to be.) For you, or anyone else, to say that the Church condemned "spreading the Scriptures to the common man", is silly at best, and libellous at worst.

But at any rate: is this discussion to degenerate into the violent things done in the past? Are you willing to defend the records of all of the "Reformers" of your tradition (Luther called for the death of the Jews; Calvin burned dissidents at the stake, etc.)? The violence done by both sides says nothing, WHATSOEVER, about the truth or falsity of their doctrines.

and that has changed its doctrine,

Sorry, no. Clarified, yes; re-presented to a new audience? Yes. Invented brand-new doctrines out of nowhere? A silly canard, and utter bunkum.

to include the primacy of the Pope,

Only a completely biased reading of Church history could come up with a wild statement like this. Did you not notice that only Simon was given a new name as he accepted a new ministry (i.e. prime minister--the "al bayt") and the Keys of the Kingdom; and like Eliakim in Isaiah 22:22ff, he would "be a father" (Latin: "Papa", from where we get "Pope") to God's people; what he opened, no one would shut, and what he shut, no one would open? Aside from that, and aside from the fact that St. Peter was always listed first among the Apostles (sometimes even to the point of neglecting the others' names entirely), was entrusted with the flock of Christ (cf. John 21:15-17), was the spokesman for the Apostles and the early Church (Acts 2, etc.), etc., you'd find it quite difficult to argue that St. Peter did not hold primacy among the Apostles. Beyond this, the Church's history (yes, I know your disdain for it) is clear on the successors of St. Peter, down to the present day (Pope Benedict XVI is the 264th successor of St. Peter, in unbroken succession), held primacy in the Church. You cannot coherently argue that this teaching was "recent" or "invented" after Apostolic times.

transubstantiation,

See my previous comments; if you find it (along with the staggering Biblical and historical support for it) "too hard a saying", I don't know what else would convince you.

Purgatory,

See 2 Maccabees 12:39-46, for starters, which was written over 100 years before Christ was born. Call it wrong, call it silly, call it repulsive; but you're in no position to call it a "recent invention".

Indulgences,

Do me a favour, please: describe, in your own words, the Catholic Church's teaching on indulgences, and let's see if your understanding is accurate (as opposed to mere parrot-talk of anti-Catholic sources). I'm not at all convinced that you have the foggiest idea WHAT indulgences are, much less why they might or might not exist... especially because there is NOTHING in the doctrine on indulgences that is in any way against anything in the Holy Faith; in fact, the teaching is as beautiful as it is consoling.

I’ll appeal to the Holy Spirit and scripture,

...except when you don't (i.e. when the meaning of Scripture is disputed)? I'd also be curious how you're sure that you're appealing to true Scripture and the true Holy Spirit (as opposed to spurious writings, and as opposed to your own imagination, or worse)... especially since the Catholic Church claims to appeal to the very same things. You haven't advanced your case here, one jot.

which is where the Apostles seemed content to leave authority.

If you mean that the Apostles "are content to leave authority with the Holy Spirit", then--in one sense--you're right, of course: no faithful and well-informed Christian will deny God's ultimate authority. But if you mean that the Apostles (and the Church) did NOT have God's Own authority delegated to them (to forgive men's sins: John 20:23; to heal and exorcise: Matthew 10:1, etc.; to judge: Matthew 18:15-17; and the authority to bind and loose everything having to do with the Kingdom: Matthew 18:18-19; etc.)), you're quite mistaken.
68 posted on 12/24/2010 3:40:04 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

I have no intention of answering all this over Christmas, but a couple of quick points:

“Only a completely biased reading of Church history could come up with a wild statement like this. Did you not notice that only Simon was given a new name as he accepted a new ministry (i.e. prime minister—the “al bayt”) and the Keys of the Kingdom; and like Eliakim in Isaiah 22:22ff, he would “be a father” (Latin: “Papa”, from where we get “Pope”) to God’s people; what he opened, no one would shut, and what he shut, no one would open?”

You get all that from: “17And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”?????????????

Apart from the keys of heaven, the other promises were made to others as well - and there is nothing new about interpreting the keys as what Peter did at Pentecost and Cornelius’s house - opening heaven to the Jews first, and then the Gentiles. See Matt 18:”18Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” and John 20: “19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came...And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”

It is safe to say, at an absolute minimum, that if Jesus MEANT all you say, he could have prevented a lot of confusion by simply saying it. But what Jesus said was “ “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

Maybe you think that sounds like he was setting Peter up as his Vicar, but no one else seems to have caught it.

“He rejected it as INSPIRED Scripture (i.e. worthy of being in the Biblical canon, written by an Apostle), and he claimed that it flatly contradicted St. Paul (William Barclay, The Daily Study Bible Series, The Letters of James and Peter, Revised Edition, Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville, KY, 1976, p. 7)”

Simply not true. See here for a good review:

http://tquid.sharpens.org/Luther_%20canon.htm

“Then why not SAY that? Did you miss the reactions of horror and disgust from the crowd when they first started to argue? “How can this man give us His FLESH to eat?!?” It’s patently obvious that this is the focal point of the crowd’s resistance...I’ll note that you’d have to ignore a great deal of John 6, and twist the meaning of much of the rest, to avoid the fact that the John 6 crowd was upset about Jesus’ “hard saying” about “giving His Flesh to eat”. Do you seriously not see this?”

What I see is that Jesus didn’t TRY to keep them, because he KNEW they didn’t believe. What I see is that bread was brought up, not in reference to the Lord’s Supper (that NO ONE THERE had ever heard of) but in response to the Jew’s question: “26Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you are seeking me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. 27 Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life...30So they said to him, “Then what sign do you do, that we may see and believe you? What work do you perform? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

It isn’t open to discussion or debate about why Jesus brought up bread. It is in the text itself.

Nor is there any dispute about the objection of the Jews - and it WASN’T cannibalism, unless you think Peter approved of cannibals. There objection is recorded here:

“41So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42They said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”

They KNEW he wasn’t being literal about his flesh, but they ALSO knew he was claiming to have come from heaven. And Peter understood it too: “we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.”

Please don’t pretend the Jews were upset over cannibalism. If THAT had been the objection, Peter would have objected as well! The objected is recorded in the text. They objected to Jesus being the Holy One of God, while Peter and others believed.

There was never a hint of the Eucharist in John 6. It wasn’t why Jesus used the metaphor, and the Jews were not objecting to cannibalism. There isn’t anything to argue with you about. It is in the text.

“I don’t worry much about where scripture is disputed in interpretation. / (!) I’m not quite sure what to say, in reply to that. You do realize that this approach would neutralize the vast majority of the Bible, don’t you?”

If I had NO concern, I wouldn’t debate you, would I? My point is that many of the things we can argue about (did Mary remain a virgin?) are pretty stupid, really. In Romans 14, Paul makes my point - the same Paul who rebuked Peter over the content of the gospel.


69 posted on 12/24/2010 4:40:05 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers

Tell you what: let’s take a breather over Christmas (I’m getting ready to go to Mass in about 5 minutes, anyway, so time is of the essence), and I’ll see what I can do on the 26th or 27th...

...and if it doesn’t sound completely incongruous with what we’ve said so far: merry Christmas to you and yours!


70 posted on 12/24/2010 5:33:39 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

Merry Christmas to you and yours as well. I may disagree with Catholic doctrine, but I’ve yet to find a verse that reads, “Repent, and become a Baptist!”


71 posted on 12/24/2010 7:13:43 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers

Hey, again!

Tell you what: the past week (on this end) has been an exhausting mix of tight schedules, intense trauma in friends’ lives, and several funerals... so what do you say we can this one a “draw”, and save our brain cells for future use (and get some needed rest in the meantime)?

At any rate: it was an honour to spar with you! :)


72 posted on 12/27/2010 5:57:23 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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To: paladinan

“At any rate: it was an honour to spar with you! :)”

Good. I think I’m behind on points...

Best wishes, and thanks for an intelligent exchange of beliefs.


73 posted on 12/27/2010 6:23:20 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Poor history is better than good fiction, and anything with lots of horses is better still)
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To: Mr Rogers
Good. I think I’m behind on points...

Enh. Not sure about that...! :)

Best wishes, and thanks for an intelligent exchange of beliefs.

Likewise!
74 posted on 12/27/2010 7:05:26 PM PST by paladinan (Rule #1: There is a God. Rule #2: It isn't you.)
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