Skip to comments.Radio Replies First Volume - "Outside the Church no salvation"
Posted on 07/11/2009 6:11:46 AM PDT by GonzoII
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“And only fighters quit.”
Great generals move from one theater of operations to another.
Okay, I think what we have here is a combination of poor formatting and punctuation and careless reading. Im going to format that section as though it were a regular book.
To become the mother of the Savior, Mary was enriched by God with gifts appropriate to such a role. The angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as full of grace. In fact, in order for Mary to be able to give the free assent of her faith to the announcement of her vocation, it was necessary that she be wholly borne by Gods grace.
Through the centuries the Church has become ever more aware that Mary, full of grace through God, was redeemed from the moment of her conception. That is what the dogma of the Immaculate Conception confesses, as Pope Pius IX proclaimed in 1854:
The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin.
The splendor of an entirely unique holiness by which Mary is enriched from the first instant of her conception comes wholly from Christ: she is redeemed, in a more exalted fashion, by reason of the merits of her Son. The Father blessed Mary more than any other created person in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places and chose her in Christ before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless before him in love.
The Fathers of the Eastern tradition call the Mother of God the All-Holy (Panagia), and celebrate her as free from any stain of sin, as though fashioned by the Holy Spirit and formed as a new creature. By the grace of God Mary remained free of every personal sin her whole life long.
Let it be done to me according to your word. . .
At the announcement that she would give birth to the Son of the Most High without knowing man, by the power of the Holy Spirit, Mary responded with the obedience of faith, certain that with God nothing will be impossible: Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be [done] to me according to your word. Thus, giving her consent to Gods word, Mary becomes the mother of Jesus. Espousing the divine will for salvation wholeheartedly, without a single sin to restrain her, she gave herself entirely to the person and to the work of her Son; she did so in order to serve the mystery of redemption with him and dependent on him, by Gods grace:
As St. Irenaeus says, Being obedient she became the cause of salvation for herself and for the whole human race. Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert. . .: The knot of Eves disobedience was untied by Marys obedience: what the virgin Eve bound through her disbelief, Mary loosened by her faith. Comparing her with Eve, they call Mary the Mother of the living and frequently claim: Death through Eve, life through Mary.
Marys divine motherhood
Called in the Gospels the mother of Jesus, Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as the mother of my Lord. In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Fathers eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos).
Read this way, I think it is clear that the paragraphs leading reference to the Fathers of the Eastern tradition pertains also to the final sentence, By the grace of God Mary remained free of every personal sin her whole life long. That is, it is correctly read, For the Fathers of the Eastern tradition, Mary remained free of every personal sin her whole life long by the grace of God.
Of course, if you find other references in the Catechism or other official documents which show that I am in error, Ill have to reconsider.
It should be remembered, however, that a Father here and there believed she had sinned. +John Chrysostomos is an example, but this notion is outside the consensus patrum.
Correct. +John Crysostomos stands out in the group as actually suggesting that she did sin once (in Cana), but this is only the short of the story. Mariology, along with other Church doctrines, developed gradually and over the centuries. All evidence shows that the early (pre-Nicene) Church held Mary higher than the Protestant (low) view, but lower than the current Church (high) view.
Apostolic Father, +Ignatius (c. 105 AD)Mary was a vessel chosen by God; Christ's incarnation, birth an death were "mysteries" hidden from the prince of the world (devil), without elaborating. [Epistle to Ephesians,7]
+Justin Martyr (c. 150 AD)first to call Mary the new/second Eve based on 1 Cor 15:21-22 calling Christ the new/second "Adam."
+Justin Martyr, states that Eve listened to the devil ("conceived the word[sic] of the serpent") which gave "birth" (i.e. "brought forth") disobedience and death. By comparison, Mary listens to God (i.e. conceived the the Word of God), giving birth to Salvation. (cf. Dialogue with Trypho, 100).
The key here is Mary's obedience (by choice) and Eve's disobedience (by choice) with respect to God; Eve being utterly disobedient and Mary utterly obedient.
We are told that this is what the Church believed "everywhere and always" but there is no evidence that this is so. No other Church father reflects Martyr's theology. Whether +Justin Martyr developed this on his own or borrowed it from someone else is uncertain. He gives no credit to anyone else.
+Irenaeus of Lyons (c. 180 AD), a student of Apostolic Father +Polycarp, simply picks up on +Justin Martyr's theology that Eve's (not Adam's!) disobedience is the "cause of death both to herself and to the entire human race," while Mary's obedience as being the "cause of salvation of the whole human race." (cf Against Heresies, III, 22)
NB This is completely contrary to +Paul clearly assigning the blame on "one man's [i.e. Adam's] transgression", and placing the blame on Eve.
The problem with +Irenaeus is his calling Mary the advocata (the advocate) of Eve. Retrotraslated from Latin into Greek, the word advocata becomes problematic: Paraclete! Since we only have a 4th century Latin copy of Irenaeus' works, there is no way of knowing which term he used, but calling Mary the Paraclete would be heresy!
The advocacy of Mary is at the core of +Irenaeus' theology of recapitulation. But this concept places Mary in the role of an intercessor, a novel concept (or innovation) not found in writings before him, and therefore certainly not something that can be claimed as faith "everywhere and always." That it was indeed the catholic faith all along is a claim made by +Irenaeus himself and no one else. (cf Against Heresies, IV, 27)
Origen (first half of the 3rd century) declares Mary the Ever-Virgin Mother of God. He states boldly "There is no child of Mary except Jesus, according to the opinion [sic] of those who think correctly about her." (Commentary on John, 32, 16). It is noteworthy to mention that Tertullian, a century earlier (late 2nd century AD, a contemporary of +Irenaeus), denies that the Church believe "everywhere and always" in perpetual virginity of Mary.
But even Origen does not go as far as to say that Mary, whom he calls Theotokos, was sinless. Instead he states that she was "ever growing" in her spiritual life and "progressing toward perfection." (Commentary on John, 32, 16)
Marian devotion grows in the 4th century; Ephraim the Syrian calls her the "Harp of the Holy Spirit," a poem in which he states "For, on you, O Lord, there is no mark [stain], neither is there any stain on your Mother." (Hilda Graef, History of Doctrine and Devotion, Westminster, 1965, 57)
It is at this stage (400 years after the crucifixion) that Mary spiritual blamelessness is declared (contrary to Origen's teaching that she was progressing spiritually towards perfection) . " He compares her to the Church.
+Ambrose of Milan (end of 4th century) follows up on this and speaks of Mary as the Virgin Mother Church, filled with the Holy Spirit, prepared by God, and all those in the Church thus being God's children (cf Exposition in Luke, 2:7).
Thus, +Ambrose suggests that Mary is therefore (almost by design) physically and morally unstained. Yet, the Church was always careful to distinguish Mary as the instrument or vessel of salvation, not to be confused with the work of salvation of Christ.
He also writes "Mary, a virgin not only undefiled but a virgin whom grace has made inviolate, free from every stain." In other words, she was made "sin-proof."
Other Church Fathers, from +Augustine to Cappadocian Fathers, dealt with Mary more in terms of her relationship to Jesus and for the sole purpose of the doctrine of Incarnation (which is based on +Paul [Gal 4:4] and not the Gospels!)
When it comes to her personal sinlessness, as Kolo mentions,. the Fathers were not always on the same sheet of music.
Notably, the last of the Desert Fathers, +John of Damascus (8th century) states regarding stainlessness "The serpent never entered that Paradise."
Contrasted to +John Chrysotsomos' speculation that Mary may have sinned, +Augustine (c. 390 AD) writes "Every personal sin must be excluded from the Blessed Virgin Mary for the sake of the honor of God."
In the fifth century, Bishop Epiphanus cautiously speculates that death may not have touched Mary (cf Rev 12:13-14), saying that scriptures which are "above human reason" (but somehow perspicuous nonetheless?) left us with the uncertainty if Mary died and was buried.
Clearly, if she was free from original sin and "made immune" to sin, she would have had no reason to die, so these speculations were theologically 'sound' insofar as the Mariological traditions were presumed true. The Church, at least in the East, to this day, believes (but does not state dogmatically) that Mary died and was raised on the 3rd day bodily, and taken to heaven.
The Catholic Church actually waited until 1950 to declare a dogma (based on the 8th century +John of Damascus, as the father of the doctrine) of Mary's Assumption which states that "having completed" the course of her earthly life "was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory," leaving the question of her physical death open.;
This is a clear contradiction of liturgical evidence celebrating Mary's death in the 5th century, and the 6th century doctrine of Mary's Assumption by Bishop Gregory of Tours (latter 6th century ad), who allegedly quoted from a lost apocryphal Greek text, attesting to the witness of the Apostles of Jesus personally taking Mary's body to heaven after she died.
He writes that the Lord "commanded the body of Mary be taken in a cloud into paradise; where now, rejoined to the soul, Mary dwells with the chosen ones."
The strongest argument against sinlessness (at least as far as "original sin" is concerned) of Mary is that her Son is also her Savior. The Eastern Church developed a belief over centuries that she chose not to sin as a matter of obedience, on her own will, and not because she was made "sin-proof" at the moment when she was conceived by her parents (for in that case she would not have needed the Savior).
The main point is that, like everything else dogmatic in the Church, Mary's sinlessness is something that evolved doctrinally over time (centuries) and not something that the Church uniformly professed "everywhere and always." To claim that the Church believed it as such without declaring it simply doesn't hold to evidentiary scrutiny. It may be a traditional belief, but certainly not a hard fact.
Half way through the battle? Count your losses and run.
You stated "Catholic doctrine does not claim that Mary never committed a single sin, no matter how slight," in other words the Church doctrine teaches that Mary may have sinned.
My point is that the Church doctrine claims that Mary never sinned.
It has nothing to do with formatting. Your statement is simply not what the Catholic Church teaches, period.
“My point is that the Church doctrine claims that Mary never sinned. It has nothing to do with formatting. Your statement is simply not what the Catholic Church teaches, period.”
Is it that you won’t get it, or that you can’t get it?
The citation you offered to support your position doesn’t say what you alleged it to say. Your point is not supported.
Either come up with some valid support, or accept that you are mistaken.
“The citation you offered to support your position doesnt say what you alleged it to say. Your point is not supported.”
Of course it does! Are you saying that the Latin Church in its catechism, posted on the Vatican website, is taking a little gratuitous detour into Eastern Patrology for the edification of the Western Faithful but in no way is it teaching doctrine at sec. 498?
I could see you arguing that the Immaculate Conception as set forth there doesn’t mean what it says, if it did then Panagia isn’t a human being and Christ isn’t True Man, but to claim that the Latin Church doesn’t teach that she was sinless all her life is an innovation smacking of protestantism.
You ought to ask yourself that. I repat your quote:
Without the double negative, your statements affirms that "Catholic doctrine claims that Mary may have sinned, no matter how slighty."
That is not what the Catholic Church teaches. If that is what you believe, then you need more catechisis; if it is not, then perhaps a review of double negatives might help.
“If that is what you believe, then you need more catechisis”
I’m not going to continue in this vein forever. Can’t you post something demonstrating the truth of your position? You should be able to do that.
I did. If you can't see what the double negative is saying, I can't help you.
No, you didn’t. You posted one out-of-context sentence from the CCC, which I don’t think means what you think it does, but after that it’s just been squabbling.
You need to do better than that if you expect to convince people that you have it right and they have it wrong.
“”The strongest argument against sinlessness (at least as far as “original sin” is concerned) of Mary is that her Son is also her Savior. The Eastern Church developed a belief over centuries that she chose not to sin as a matter of obedience, on her own will, and not because she was made “sin-proof” at the moment when she was conceived by her parents (for in that case she would not have needed the Savior).””
Dear Brother,for Mary to replace the OT eve and be the NEW Eve,Mary would had to have been given equal sinlessness as eve to start with in order to show that eve’s disobedience was overcome by Mary’s obedience.Thus,Mary’s obedience replaces Eve’s disobedience and Mary becomes the NEW EVE.
Typology bears this out as well...
There was disobedience, Gen 3:4-7 = There was obedience, Luke 1:38
Death came through Eve, Gen 3:17-19 = Life Himself came through Mary, John 10:28
There was pride, Gen 3:4-7 = There was humility, Luke 1:38
This following is from Fulton Sheen’s “Wedding at Cana” that really gives light to understanding New Eve
One of the most amazing features of this marriage is that it was not the wine servant, whose business it was to service the wine, who noticed the shortage, but rather Our Blessed Mother. (She notes our needs before we ourselves feel them.) She made a very simple prayer to her Divine Son about the empty wine pots when she said: “They have no wine.” Hidden in the words was not only a consciousness of the power of her Divine Son but also an expression of her desire to remedy an awkward situation. Perhaps the Blessed Mother had already seen Our Lord work many miracles in secretalthough He had not yet worked a single one in public. For if there had not already been a consciousness of the truth that He was the Son of the Omnipotent God, she would not have asked for a miracle. Some of the greatest miracles of the world have similarly been done through the influence of a mother: “The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.” The answer of Our Blessed Lord was, “Woman, what is that to me? My hour is not yet come.”
Note that Our Lord said: “My hour is not yet come.” Whenever Our Blessed Lord used that expression “hour”, it was in relation to His Passion and His death. For example, the night that Judas crossed the brook of Cedron to blister His lips with a kiss, Our Lord said: “This is your hour and the powers of darkness.” A few hours before, when seated at His Last Supper on earth and anticipating His death, He said: “Father, the hour is come. Glorify Thy Son with the glory that He had with Thee before the foundations of the world were laid.” Earlier, when a crowd attempted to take His life by stoning, Scriptures say: “His hour was not yet come.” Our Blessed Lord was obviously, at Cana, saying that the hour in which He was to reveal Himself had not yet come according to His Fathers appointment. And yet, implicit in Mary s statement was a request that He actually begin it. Scriptures tell us: “So in Cana of Galilee, Jesus began His miracles, and made known the glory that was within Him, so that His disciples learned to believe in Him” (Jn 2:11). In our own language, Our Lord was saying to His Blessed Mother:
“My dear Mother, do you realize that you are asking me to proclaim my Divinityto appear before the world as the Son of God and to prove my Divinity by my works and my miracles? The moment that I do this, I begin the royal road to the Cross. When I am no longer known among men as the son of the carpenter, but as the Son of God, that will be my first step toward Calvary. My hour is not yet come; but would you have me anticipate it? Is it your will that I go to the Cross? If I do this, your relationship to me changes. You are now my mother. You are known everywhere in our little village as the ‘Mother of Jesus’. But if I appear now as the Savior of men and begin the work of redemption, your role will change, too. Once I undertake the salvation of mankind, you will not only be my mother, but you will also be the mother of everyone whom I redeem. I am the Head of humanity; as soon as I save the body of humanity, you, who are the Mother of the Head, become also the Mother of the body. You will then be the universal Mother, the new Eve, as I am the new Adam.
“To indicate the role that you will play in Redemption, I now bestow upon you that title of universal motherhood; I call youWoman. It was to you that I referred when I said to Satan that I would put enmity between him and the Woman, between his brood of evil and your seed, which I am. That great title of Woman I dignify you with now. And I shall dignify you with it again when my hour comes and when I am unfurled upon the Cross, like a wounded eagle. We are in this work of redemption together. What is yours is mine. From this hour on, we are not just Mary and Jesus, we are the new Adam and the new Eve, beginning a new humanity, changing the water of sin into the wine of life. Knowing all this, my dear Mother, is it your will that I anticipate the Cross and that I go to Calvary?”
The Eastern Church believes exactly that she was cleaned of all sin, but at the moment of the Annunciation, not at the moment of her being conceived by her parents. Either belief is a latter-day theological innovation of the Church and hardly found anywhere in the Bible.
I have tried to be respectful of you, while disagreeing with your erroneous statements regarding Roman Catholicism and conflating it (mistakenly) to universalism. This point, despite the Roman Catholic Church’s attempt to claim to the contrary, is not supported in Scriptures. Christ did not establish the Roman Catholic Church. Period.
Your remarks have become increasingly hostile and vitriolic. If you cannot engage in the issues without being insulting - which I’m beginning to think is the case - then there is no point in continuing. I mistakenly believed you were actually interested in a civil engagement of your stance on Roman Catholicism. My mistake.
I will say, furthermore, that you are woefully misinformed when it comes to the Gospel - which, frankly, is the only issue worth discussing here. Water/Baptism does not save - and nowhere in Scripture can that position be supported. NOWHERE. It is an act of obedience, which ECHOES an internal conversion - not saves in and of itself. Your use of 1 Peter 3:21 is a misunderstanding and misinterpretation of that Scripture. The Bible is not a buffet line in which one can pick and choose. Scriptures must always (and DO) support Scripture. Baptism is symbolic. The verse refers to the SYMBOLISM inherent in the flood and the fact that Noah’s family were Godly (prior to the flood), not that water saved them.
Again, one need only look at John 3:16, Ephesians 2:8-9, John 3:1-7, to name just a few, which clearly give the Gospel (as preached and accepted, by the way, in SBC churches.) ANY OTHER “GOSPEL” is heresy - regardless of any attempt to legitimize that “Gospel” by basing it on one Scripture. I know what the RC Church believes - and yes, there are many very deeply troubling beliefs taught by the RC: purgatory (contradicted by Luke 16:26, Hebrews 9:27), worship of Saints (The Bible clearly states that every Christian is a Saint by virtue of their new position in Christ), adoration and veneration of Mary (Scriptures do not teach that she was sinless - as the RC denomination claims) - nor are we to worship any created Being. These are clear departures from Scriptures. Your attempt to equate them with an altar call shows a clear misunderstanding of the basic precepts of salvation as outlined in Scripture. Yes, there are differences between tradition and Scripture, but teaching that one can be prayed out of an in-between limbo state after death by those on Earth, that one must pray to Mary and a special group of “saints” as declared by the RC church, are not just differences in tradition. They touch - and distort - the heart of the Gospel message.
If you reply, I must ask that you be respectful. You have urged me in several replies to refer to Catholic texts. I ask you in response to refer to the Bible. The fact that RC tradition has departed from Scripture since its inception is a fact proven by history - and more importantly from Scripture. There are so many erroneous claims in the RC church that one hardly knows where to begin, but I have named a few in the above post. The statement that you made that the Gospel as presented in Scriptures is only “part of the Gospel” is deeply troubling as it goes beyond Biblical authority. Remember that the Scriptures forbid anyone to add to the Gospel message “lest he be anathema”.
If you wish to discuss this further, I am open to that - but only if the conversation is civil. I am not interested in being insulted or continuing argument for argument’s sake. It is clear that the RC church or at least its adherents - claim extra-Biblical texts as references for their claims. I base my salvation on Scripture. It is the only God-given authority. Period. No texts, beliefs, traditions, etc... are co-equal to Scripture.
I wish you well.
“”The Eastern Church believes exactly that she was cleaned of all sin, but at the moment of the Annunciation””
I know,but how would Mary be superior to eve who was created sinless? Mary would have been flawed and therefore Eve was created more perfectly if Mary had any sin in her prior.
I like what the late father Hardon had to say on this,it just seems to glorify Christ to me.
From Father Hardon....
“Mary was impeccable, preserved by an extraordinary grace from God from ever being capable of offending God by deliberate sin. Yet though impeccable Mary was able to choose. This bears emphasis. We are so accustomed to identifying freedom as choosing between good and evil that we forget the highest use of our liberty is not to choose “not to sin”, but rather to choose to do more than we have to do or that we are obliged to do in a word, to choose to be generous. Like Mary, then, we can choose to give God more than He demands under pain of sin. We can choose to love God with our whole heart and not just to avoid His punishment.”-Fr John Hardon
Some of the Church fathers seem pretty clear on this to me and I think some of the writing became even more clearer after Christianity became legal(which seems to explain why this took time to develop further),so,I personally believe that sinless Mary is part of Apostolic tradition especially when we see the earliest fathers call her the New Eve.
I found a few writings that seem to allude to complete sinlessness...
Today humanity, in all the radiance of her immaculate nobility, receives its ancient beauty. The shame of sin had darkened the splendour and attraction of human nature; but when the Mother of the Fair One par excellence is born, this nature regains in her person its ancient privileges and is fashioned according to a perfect model truly worthy of God. . . . The reform of our nature begins today and the aged world, subjected to a wholly divine transformation, receives the first fruits of the second creation. (Homily 1 on Marys Nativity; OCarroll, 180)St. Andrew of Crete
Others before you have flourished with outstanding holiness. But to none as to you has the fullness of grace been given. None has been endowed with happiness as you, none adorned with holiness like yours, none brought to such great magnificence as yours; no one was ever possessed beforehand by purifying grace as were you . . . And this deservedly, for no one came as close to God as you did; no one was enriched with God’s gifts as you were; no one shared God’s grace as you did. (In SS Deip. Annunt. 22; O’Carroll, 329)St. Sophronius
How disappointing. You are arguing a point of Catholic doctrine, and, quite apart from whether you are right or wrong, you are arguing like a liberal.
All the Bamtard has to do is produce his birth certificate, and all you have to do is produce an unequivocal citation demonstrating your position. Why do you refuse?
The Orthodox do not consider them ontologically the same. In the Eastern tradition, going back to the early Church, the East celebrates the Dormition of the Theotokos, a feast unknown in the west, that deal with Mary's death and assumption.
From very early on, the Orthodox East always believed that Mary died and on the third day was assumed to heaven, body and soul. If she were ontological equal to Eve, how could she die unless she sinned?
I understand that the Catholic 20th century dogma of the Assumption of Mary leaves the possibility of her death open, neither denying it nor confirming it, which is in itselfas a possibilityan ontological curiosity if not an outright paradox.
The Orthodox consider Mary superior to Eve because, for one, Eve had everything going for her and blew it! Mary had to overcome much greater hurtles precisely because she was not ontologically created like Eve, who through complete and willing obedience and devotion to God, unlike any other human, overcame her fallen nature even if she couldn't lose it.
Se is therefore the saint of saints, as human as we are, the object of our veneration and respect, the best among among us, a real example of what is humanly possible.
She is not some creation that is simply "sin-proofed," else what makes her human like the rest of us? For if she really were made immaculate at the moment of her own conception, and remained so throughout her whole life, she would not need a Savior, as neither did Adam or Eve.
Obsessing lately with out-of-context unresolved fears?
“I have tried to be respectful of you, while disagreeing with your erroneous statements regarding Roman Catholicism and conflating it (mistakenly) to universalism.”
That’s a logically impossible statement on your part for two reasons: 1) I made no errors regarding the Catholic faith whatsoever. 2) I never conflated Catholicism with universalism EVER. Thus, you are mistaken....again.
“This point, despite the Roman Catholic Churchs attempt to claim to the contrary, is not supported in Scriptures. Christ did not establish the Roman Catholic Church. Period.”
He established the Catholic Church. I am not “Roman Catholic”. That is a term invented in the English langauge by Protestants. If you don’t believe me, you can look it up in the OED.
“Your remarks have become increasingly hostile and vitriolic.”
Doubtful. My comments are almost always strong and confrontational. Period.
“If you cannot engage in the issues without being insulting - which Im beginning to think is the case - then there is no point in continuing. I mistakenly believed you were actually interested in a civil engagement of your stance on Roman Catholicism. My mistake.”
Again, I am not discussing “Roman Catholicism”. I would be more than happy to discuss Catholicism, however. You could at the very least muster up enough decency to call me by the proper appellation: Catholic.
“I will say, furthermore, that you are woefully misinformed when it comes to the Gospel - which, frankly, is the only issue worth discussing here.”
Actually, I am vastly better informed about the gospel than you are - as you are about to display in the next sentences:
“Water/Baptism does not save - and nowhere in Scripture can that position be supported. NOWHERE.”
First, that is not what I said. I said it is the grace of baptism. Second, Peter said baptism saves (he meant the grace tha cleanses our soul in baptism).
“It is an act of obedience, which ECHOES an internal conversion - not saves in and of itself. Your use of 1 Peter 3:21 is a misunderstanding and misinterpretation of that Scripture.”
Not in the least. I noticed you seem to not want to post the verse: “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ”
Now, Protestants today have to twist themselves into pretzles to avoid the plain meaning of this text. But what did the early Christians believe? Well, gee, they all agreed with the idea that baptism was a grace filled cleansing!
As Scripture Cathlic says:
1 Peter 3:21 - Peter expressly writes that baptism, corresponding to Noah’s ark, now saves you; not as a removal of dirt from the body, but for a clear conscience. Hence, the verse demonstrates that baptism is salvific (it saves us), and deals with the interior life of the person (purifying the conscience, like Heb. 10:22), and not the external life (removing dirt from the body). Many scholars believe the phrase “not as a removal of dirt from the body” is in reference to the Jewish ceremony of circumcision (but, at a minimum, shows that baptism is not about the exterior, but interior life). Baptism is now the circumcision of the new Covenant (Col. 2:11-12), but it, unlike the old circumcision, actually saves us, as Noah and his family were saved by water.
Again, notice the parallel between Heb. 10:22 and 1 Peter 3:21: (1) Heb. 10:22 draw near to the sanctuary (heaven) / 1 Peter 3:21 now saves us. (2) Heb. 10:22 sprinkled clean, washed with pure water / 1 Peter 3:20-21 saved through water, baptism. (3) Heb. 10:22 from an evil conscience (interior) / 1 Peter 3:21 for a clear conscience (interior). Titus 3:6 and 1 Peter 3:21 also specifically say the grace and power of baptism comes through Jesus Christ (who transforms our inner nature).
“The Bible is not a buffet line in which one can pick and choose. Scriptures must always (and DO) support Scripture. Baptism is symbolic.”
Baptism is symbolic. So is Jesus. Then again, Jesus is more than symbolic and so is baptism. You are making the mistake of assuming that a thing cannot be both symbolic and effectual.
“The verse refers to the SYMBOLISM inherent in the flood and the fact that Noahs family were Godly (prior to the flood), not that water saved them.”
No. Baptism is grace filled. Grace cleanses us. No on is saved without grace.
“Again, one need only look at John 3:16, Ephesians 2:8-9, John 3:1-7, to name just a few, which clearly give the Gospel (as preached and accepted, by the way, in SBC churches.) ANY OTHER GOSPEL is heresy - regardless of any attempt to legitimize that Gospel by basing it on one Scripture.”
You completely misunderstand the scriptures - which is to be expected from a man in your position. Look again at John 3:
John 3:3,5 - Jesus says, “Truly, truly, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” When Jesus said “water and the Spirit,” He was referring to baptism (which requires the use of water, and the work of the Spirit).
John 3:22 - after teaching on baptism, John says Jesus and the disciples did what? They went into Judea where the disciples baptized. Jesus’ teaching about being reborn by water and the Spirit is in the context of baptism.
And Ephesians? Ephesians 4:5, “one Lord, one faith, one baptism”
Your view is a new, novel view essentially invented in the 16th century. It has no connection whatsoever to Christianity. Here is what the Christians thought, instead:
“I know what the RC Church believes - and yes, there are many very deeply troubling beliefs taught by the RC:”
A cola teaches? Royal Crown cola?
“purgatory (contradicted by Luke 16:26, Hebrews 9:27),”
Nope. Not contradicted in the least: http://www.cin.org/users/james/files/how2purg.htm
“worship of Saints (The Bible clearly states that every Christian is a Saint by virtue of their new position in Christ),”
We don’t worship saints: http://books.google.com/books?id=Y3TXSG3ty7AC&pg=PA58&lpg=PA58&dq=patrick+madrid+saints&source=bl&ots=DgqGCh01Gv&sig=WO7CXW3Te5YmAoLYQhQ2rU9y0Tg&hl=en&ei=FBddSrvDCoLcNYrcgMAC&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4
“adoration and veneration of Mary”
No Catholic adores her. She is venerated - and should be: http://www.cin.org/users/james/files/key2mary.htm
“(Scriptures do not teach that she was sinless - as the RC denomination claims)”
Royal Crown cola is a denomination? Maybe. After all Protestants make up a new denomination about every three days. http://www.catholic.com/library/Immaculate_Conception_and_Assum.asp
“- nor are we to worship any created Being.”
“These are clear departures from Scriptures.”
Most of what you claimed we don’t even do nor have we ever done it.
“Your attempt to equate them with an altar call shows a clear misunderstanding of the basic precepts of salvation as outlined in Scripture.”
Nope, not in the least. What I pointed out was irrefutable: not all Christian practices are mentioned in scripture nor should anyone think they should be.
“Yes, there are differences between tradition and Scripture, but teaching that one can be prayed out of an in-between limbo state after death by those on Earth,”
What Church teaches that? Not the Catholic Church. Limbo is not a state from which someone could leave. And that proves my point. You make mistake after mistake and then insist you know what the Catholic faith is. Logically it is impossible for you to know much if you make so many mistakes.
“that one must pray to Mary and a special group of saints as declared by the RC church,”
Actually no one has to EVER pray to the Virgin Mary or even a single other saint to be saved. Never. Not once. And that is exactly what the Church teaches too. At the same time the Church teaches - correctly - that we are aided by the intercession of the saints in heaven and they, through their prayers for us, bind us closer to Christ. It is good to ask for such intercession. It is, however, not necessary. Again, you are completely wrong. That’s not surprising.
“...are not just differences in tradition. They touch - and distort - the heart of the Gospel message.”
The true doctrines - and not your distortions of them - do not in any distort the gospel. You do.
“If you reply, I must ask that you be respectful.”
ANd when will you be respectful to me? I am not a Royal Crown cola.
“You have urged me in several replies to refer to Catholic texts. I ask you in response to refer to the Bible.”
That’s exactly what I am doing. Everything I linked to discusses scripture.
“The fact that RC tradition has departed from Scripture since its inception is a fact proven by history - and more importantly from Scripture.”
Actually neither say that. Both history and the Bible show that the Church has remained true since Christ founded it.
“There are so many erroneous claims in the RC church that one hardly knows where to begin, but I have named a few in the above post.”
No. Most of what you named we don’t even believe in. This is a serious problem. Logically it means one of only wo things: 1) you are grossly misinformed and, quite frankly, couldn’t care less about being correctly informed. And this would show ill will on your part. Or 2) You know you are posting distortions. That would be a sad thing. But those are the only two possibilities. There are logically no others.
“The statement that you made that the Gospel as presented in Scriptures is only part of the Gospel is deeply troubling as it goes beyond Biblical authority.”
That’s yet another distortion on your part. What I said was that having ONLY faith is not the gospel. And that is exactly what he Bible teaches: “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.” A few years after inventing sola fide, Luther was forced to threaten to destroy the Letter of James precisely because of that verse which destroyed his thesis.
“Remember that the Scriptures forbid anyone to add to the Gospel message lest he be anathema.”
And yet Protestants do it all the time with sola fide and sola scriptura.
“If you wish to discuss this further, I am open to that - but only if the conversation is civil.”
Then why are you addressing a Royal Crown cola?
“I am not interested in being insulted or continuing argument for arguments sake. It is clear that the RC church or at least its adherents - claim extra-Biblical texts as references for their claims.”
No. What we do is show how early Christians believed in what the Bible taught and that is what we have always taught since Christ founded the Church. You never truly cite scripture, however. You simply distort it. That’s all you can do.
“I base my salvation on Scripture.”
I base mine on Christ.
“It is the only God-given authority.”
Nope. The Church was given authority by Christ.
“Period. No texts, beliefs, traditions, etc... are co-equal to Scripture.”
The Church wrote scripture under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and she alone can give authoritative interpretations of it. All you can do is distort it as you have been.
“I wish you well.”
I see no reason to believe that when you make false claims about what I believe. A man who says dozens of false things about me cannot possibly wish me well.