Skip to comments.Why Evangelicals are Returning to Rome
Posted on 05/02/2008 2:09:51 PM PDT by Augustinian monk
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Sola Scriptura Ping!
Apostasy to whom?
The question answers itself.
Literate American Christians are running away from sola scriptura because searching the Scriptures (especially using computer technology) has never been easier.
Perhaps the best antidote to rejecting sola scriptura and going back to Rome would be a careful study of the Book of Hebrews. It describes a situation that is analogous to that which evangelicals face today. The Hebrew Christians were considering going back to temple Judaism. Their reasons can be discerned by the admonitions and warnings in Hebrews. The key problem for them was the tangibility of the temple system, and the invisibility of the Christian faith. Just about everything that was offered to them by Christianity was invisible: the High Priest in heaven, the tabernacle in heaven, the once for all shed blood, and the throne of grace. At the end of Hebrews, the author of Hebrews points out that they have come to something better than mount Sinai: But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and church of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel (Hebrews 12:22-24). All of these things are invisible.
But the life of faith does not require tangible visibility: Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1). The Roman Catholic Church has tangibility that is unmatched by the evangelical faith, just as temple Judaism had. Why have faith in the once-for-all shed blood of Christ that is unseen when you can have real blood (that of the animals for temple Judaism and the Eucharistic Christ of Catholicism)? Why have the scriptures of the Biblical apostles and prophets who are now in heaven when you can have a real, live apostle and his teaching Magisterium who can continue to speak for God? The similarities to the situation described in Hebrews are striking. Why have only the Scriptures and the other means of grace when the Roman Church has everything from icons to relics to cathedrals to holy water and so many other tangible religious articles and experiences?
I urge my fellow evangelicals to seriously consider the consequences of rejecting sola scriptura as the formal principle of our theology. If my Hebrews analogy is correct, such a rejection is tantamount to apostasy.
Like a dog that returns to his vomit
is a fool who repeats his folly
It should be all about the Lord either way.
Speaking as a Presbyterian (more of a free-agent Protestant), I find the idea of sola scriptura a bit lacking.
First, it was the Catholic Church and only the Catholic Church that closed the scriptures in the first place. To uphold the idea of sola scriptura is at once a rebuke of and validation of the Catholic Church.
Second, the idea of sola scriptura essentially amounts to the belief that no revelation God could ever make short of the Second Coming is worthy of being recorded as anything more than history or theology. That seems a little suspect to me.
There are certain things that would lead me to stop short of becoming a Catholic, but there is a lot I admire in the Church and its approach. I also tend to refer to anyone not Catholic or Orthodox as a Protestant by default.
***Apostasy to whom?***
That would be apostasy from the truth and from Christ to a sad masquerade of the grace and glory salvation by grace.
I know you’ll enjoy reading this.
Next time Benny Hinn or Pat Robertson have a “revelation”, I’ll remind you to take notes.
No king but Christ!
“Next time Benny Hinn or Pat Robertson have a revelation, Ill remind you to take notes.”
Benny Hinn and Pat Robertson aren’t Catholics, are they? And that’s just the thing: without an organized body such as the Catholic Church, there is no scripture .
Indeed, the Gospels were a loosely assembled mish-mash of this or that. It was only after the Church decided upon which were historically correct and holy that the canonization took place.
Modern day Protestants are so eclectic and disorganized that they couldn’t decide on scripture, anyway.
But by revelation, I was thinking more in terms of sainthood, for instance.
The issue the author has with Warren, et al, is not that they don't practice sola scriptura, but rather, they don't practice it the way the author believes it should be practiced. Indeed, the author seems to adhere to the relatively recent invention of solo scriptura (a term, while arguably grammatically incorrect, coined by Protestants themselves, to describe the quandary they find themselves in today, to whit: the practice of using only the Bible to form doctrine, and no outside sources such as history, or traditional practices, OR accepting traditions and church leadership as long as they don't "violate Scripture"). This can be shown by a simple rewording of the author's statement above
If sola scriptura were the formal principle in Warrens
theology tradition of celebrating Christmas, then he would provide vigorous, Biblical analysis using sound exegesis to ground his reformation practice of celebrating Christmas on the authority of Scripture. But his teachings and public statements are not characterized by sound Biblical exegesis.
As we can see here, the author's statement can be used to "justify" rejecting all sorts of "extra Biblical practices", thus, falls under the category of solo scriptura. Again, the author is basically complaining that Warren et. al. don't have the same extra Biblical practices as he does. A complaint that ultimately falls flat on its face if its applied equally, fairly, to reject all extra Biblical practices and or traditions. The only counter argument to that is "Christmas is an old tradition, but Warren's practices aren't old, therefore shouldn't be equivocated to "traditions" like Christmas". A ludicrous rebuttal for what should be obvious reasons.
This is why, ultimately, I've rejected Protestantism in general. There seems to be no consensus about what the fundamental dogma of Protestantism (sola scriptura) means. Some believe as this author (apparently) believes, that "Anything not soundly shown in a positive state in Scripture should be rejected" (which is really solo scriptura), while others believe that there's a place for tradition and church leadership, but they are both subject to, what is eventually, personal interpretation of Scripture. (which is historic sola scriptura)
Why mess with a version of Christianity that can't even agree on their central dogma? I've been told that there's just as much dispute among Catholics/Orthodox as there is among Protestants, but I've found no evidence that there are disputes on dogma, like there are in the tens (if not 100's or 1000's) of Protestant denominations.
“That would be apostasy from the truth and from Christ to a sad masquerade of the grace and glory salvation by grace.”
So you are basicaly saying we Catholics aren’t Christians.
Whatever floats your boat big guy, but the last I checked we are just as much Christians as Baptists or what ever other Protestant denomination you want to name.
You say, “# Search the bible for sola scriptura
# Discover it’s NOT there”
The Lord says:
Proverbs 30:5 Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.
6 Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.
That’s strange, I don’t know why some of my post above appears in red font. It wasn’t intentional, for the record.
***First, it was the Catholic Church and only the Catholic Church that closed the scriptures in the first place.***
Incorrect. It was the Holy Spirit that closed the canon of Scripture. The Church only acknowledge what God had already done. To declare the Church to have CLOSED the canon is to declare that MEN told God to shut up.
***To uphold the idea of sola scriptura is at once a rebuke of and validation of the Catholic Church.***
If you think that Sola Scriptura is a validation of the Catholic Church, then you have absolutely NO idea what Sola Scripture is. Sola Scriptura is a repudiation of the claim of the Catholic Church’s supremacy and infallibility.
***Second, the idea of sola scriptura essentially amounts to the belief that no revelation God could ever make short of the Second Coming is worthy of being recorded as anything more than history or theology. That seems a little suspect to me.***
Yeah, the canon of Scripture is closed. The Lord has ceased speaking in Special Revelation. If you deny that, then you deny the Westminster Confession of faith, the confession of we Presbyterians.
But, really, Sola Scriptura has nothing to do with whether or not God still speaks to men. If you wish to complain that no scripture is being written, then complain to the Catholics. You are the one who stated they closed them.
The Lord still speaks to me. I get “revelations” every day.
Perhaps, “free-agent” is a better description for you than Presbyterian.
No king but Christ!”
Amen and Amen! Viva Christo Rey!
As Pope Benedict16 teaches on Palm Sunday:
“Acclaiming Christ as King
Thus, the procession of the Palms is also a procession of Christ the King: we profess the Kingship of Jesus Christ, we recognize Jesus as the Son of David, the true Solomon, the King of peace and justice.
Recognizing him as King means accepting him as the One who shows us the way, in whom we trust and whom we follow. It means accepting his Word day after day as a valid criterion for our life. It means seeing in him the authority to which we submit. We submit to him because his authority is the authority of the truth.”
No King but Christ!