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Foundational Tenets at the Roots of US Mainline Protestant Decline
Vivificat - from Contemplation to Action ^ | 19 July 2012. | TDJ

Posted on 07/24/2012 3:07:03 PM PDT by Te骹ilo

Brethren: Peace and Good to all of you.

This blog post presents a broader commentary to this MSNBC headline: Is liberal Christianity signing its own death warrant? I invite you to read that news piece.

I have said many times before that the decline among the US mainline Protestant churches (Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, etc.) is due to their embrace of secular values and pseudomorality.

In my opinion, their faithful departed are seeking a more vigorous or emotive faith and for that reason are leaving the so-called Mainline Churches and are joining Pentecostal or Evangelical communities. Or, they might become more interested in historical Christianity and therefore leave for the Roman Catholic, Orthodox, or independent Anglican churches. Or maybe they become agnostic or “spiritual” without belonging to any “organized religion” and the trappings that come with it.

I want to approach this matter from a different direction and look for the roots of the mainline Protestant drift to secularism and subjective morality. I find it in the Protestant foundational tenets themselves which I encapsulate in this: The problem with Protestantism is Protestantism itself.

In the following table, I'll analyze each of the foundational Protestant principles and detail their ultimate consequences:
Tenet
Explanation
Consequence
;
Sola Scriptura
That the written Scripture only is the sole rule of belief, morals, and practice for believing Christians.
The absence of a proven, credentialed and authoritative hermeneutics that is external to the individual believer leads to interpretative anarchy – for a single believer or group of believers will always find a purportedly compelling reason to reinterpret the Bible to suit their own agenda

;
Sola Fide
That faith alone is necessary for the salvation of individual Christian and that good works lack intrinsic salvific value.
The experience of faith was emptied of any objective contents and was made subjective, enabling the individual to determine his status as “saved” by the emotive contents of his or her salvation experience – the individual believer is  now empower to approach Scripture individually, purportedly under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

;
Free Examen
That the individual alone exercises “priestly” power to approach Holy Scripture and to interpret it on the basis of his or her salvific experience alone, as permitted by sola scriptura and illuminated by sola fide.
Faith and belief having been emptied of objective contents and free from external hermeneutical authority. now depends on the subjective contents the individual believer deems fit to find. Dissent is built into this tenet for if the individual believer objects to what his pastor teaches and his community believes, he can leave to search for another community or found his own.

;
Sola Gratia
That salvation is due to “grace alone” apart from individual efforts of sanctification and cooperation with grace.
The consequence is that there’s no Christian morality or orthopraxis that is ultimately binding. The “Grace vs. Works” conundrum being resolved in the favor of grace “through faith”, and faith having been subjectivized itself, they further built their morality on subjective principles such as “compassion, acceptance, understanding” defined apart from any objective grounds such as saving works.
;

Brothers and sisters, all Protestant foundational tenets conspire to produce these consequences. Even the most conservative, “Bible-oriented” Christian communities are not free from these vices. Since they have no external authoritative hermeneutics, their only resort is to scream their beliefs in an increasingly louder fashion.

The cure for this malady is for all Protestant and Evangelical churches to discard their foundational tenets, or to reinterpret them within the true Catholic-Orthodox theologicalframework. The alternative - and this is not a false choice - is their continuing decline (for the Mainline Churches), intellectual suicide (for the Evangelical communities) and eventual death (for all).


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Evangelical Christian; Mainline Protestant
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Blunders. Typos. Mine. Sorry about the table. It didn't transfer quite right but I think it still makes the point.
1 posted on 07/24/2012 3:07:10 PM PDT by Te骹ilo
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To: YellowRoseofTx; Rashputin; StayoutdaBushesWay; OldNewYork; MotherRedDog; sayuncledave; ...

PING.


2 posted on 07/24/2012 3:09:42 PM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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But why should I adhere to a body of beliefs that CLEARLY runs contrary to Scripture?

- Call no man “Father”
- All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (including Mary, the mother of Jesus!)
- Deny the plain reading of Scripture that tells me that I am saved by GRACE through FAITH, it is NOT of works, lest ANY man should boast. The whole of Galatians demolishes a system of man-earned salvation

Besides, not all Protestant denominations are in decline by any means; the liberal mainline groups are in trouble, to be sure. But, it is because they deny the power of the Gospel to save, they accept humanism in place of God’s authority, and they gladly have opened up their hearts to all manner of perversion of sin. No, I contend that the Church of Rome is not the only vested authority by God over His kingdom.


3 posted on 07/24/2012 3:17:19 PM PDT by Arkansas Toothpick
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To: Te贸filo

I was an Episcopalian. When that body embraced places of religious authority for sexually active gays and lesbians and endorsed the idea that God’s laws are “evolving”, I left. For a long time I drifted and grieved. Then one day, I attended a service in an evangelical and growing Baptist church. I didn’t know their songs and there was no liturgy, but the sanctuary was overflowing with vibrant, excited young Christians! I miss the beautiful ceremonies and the wonderful old songs, but, oh, I’m so glad to be home again in a Christian community. They’re not fancy, but they have the important things right.


4 posted on 07/24/2012 3:29:08 PM PDT by July4 (Remember the price paid for your freedom.)
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To: Te贸filo

The mainlines are dying because they have forsaken God’s WORD.

Simple.

No more complicated than that.


5 posted on 07/24/2012 3:32:12 PM PDT by fishtank (The denial of original sin is the root of liberalism.)
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To: July4
Welcome home, brother/sister.

I'm an independent, fundamental Baptist

6 posted on 07/24/2012 3:42:01 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: Te贸filo

The 300 year old UCC church in my town is all about rainbow flags, gay marriage, Palestinian statehood and drum-circles. I imagine the lights could be kept on simply by hooking up to the founding parishoners’ bodies spinning in their graves.


7 posted on 07/24/2012 3:49:24 PM PDT by BillyBonebrake
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To: Te贸filo

Written as if the Roman faith in the USA is not suffering a decline right along with the rest of Churchianity in this country.

It’s in the same shape - let’s not kid ourselves.

The secular culture is winning out across the spectrum of biblical faith and tradition.

I bristle at the implication that such a decline would not happen if we were all still subjects of the Roman church and that their traditions are superior to those attempting to follow biblical ones.


8 posted on 07/24/2012 3:50:32 PM PDT by INVAR ("Fart for liberty, fart for freedom and fart proudly!" - Benjamin Franklin)
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To: July4
Welcome home, brother/sister.

I'm an independent, fundamental Baptist

9 posted on 07/24/2012 3:55:40 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: Te贸filo

Misuse of the term “evangelical”. That, btw, is always a fatal flaw in any discussion because, after all, no one will understand what he’s hearing, nor what he is saying.


10 posted on 07/24/2012 3:58:25 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Te贸filo

“That the written Scripture only is the sole rule of belief, morals, and practice for believing Christians.”

That’s right, Buster. Most things in the Bible are simple enough to read and interpret at face value, without some priest telling me what I just read. I don’t read through the rose-colored lenses of 2,000 years of the accumulated traditions of men. Too many old, established denominations have made the simple tenets of Christianity seem complicated and conflicting.

Ever hear of William Tyndale? He was insisting that the Bible should be given to the people in English, that it should be explained to them, and that they should learn how to read it. One bishop named John Bell told Tyndale that it would be better for the people to be without God’s law, as long as they had the pope’s law. This was Tyndale’s famous response: “I defy the pope and his laws! If God spares my life, in a few years a plow boy shall know more of the Scriptures than you do.”

I say, Amen!


11 posted on 07/24/2012 5:31:37 PM PDT by TexasRepublic (Socialism is the gospel of envy and the religion of thieves)
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To: Te贸filo

This is happy catholic talk that comes due to a base ignorance of protestant theological issues. No biggie. Protestant are generally not privy to the broad issues of catholic theology.

What has killed the liberal protestant denominations in europe and is currently killing the liberal denominations in the USA and the Catholic church in latin america is the Arian heresy. The arian heresy came in through liberation theology in the catholic church — and in the protestant church a theological school of thought called “Higher Criticism”. I know little of liberation theology beyond what I’ve been told by conservative catholics. I can say more about the “higher criticism” school. The “the higher criticism” school evaluates the bible as if it were a myth—like norse or greek myths. Seen in these terms there are no miracles and Jesus is just a man. The “Higher Criticism” school dates from the 17th century. They got their start as an off shoot of descartes.Who in turn brought into Christendom the greek notion that “man is the measure of all things.” That is, if man is the measure of all things—then that includes God.

Catholics on the board need to stop digging a hole for themselves with the sola matters. The secularists are reigning triumphant. The interesting question is why.


12 posted on 07/24/2012 5:34:25 PM PDT by ckilmer
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To: July4
Decisions about your eternal life cannot be made on emotion such as you experienced. Reason has to enter into the picture too.



13 posted on 07/24/2012 5:36:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Te贸filo; YellowRoseofTx; Rashputin; StayoutdaBushesWay; OldNewYork; MotherRedDog; sayuncledave
I have said many times before that the decline among the US mainline Protestant churches (Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, etc.) is due to their embrace of secular values and pseudomorality.

Teo, I agree with the above. Completely. As an ordained elder in the Methodist (UMC) Church, I would fully endorse every word in the above.

However, your analysis of the root of that embrace, an analysis based on what I believe is a misunderstanding of the Solas, can never be correct if the understanding of them is skewed. I don't think there is any intentional misunderstanding. I think there is simply misunderstanding.

Sola Scriptura is not premised on just any old hermeneutics one feels like using. It must be a spiritually and ecclesiastically acceptable, rational, historic, and comprehensive hermeneutic. It must recognize as well that the scriptures are the words of the Apostles and the Prophets, and that they are, therefore, authoritative.

A Sola Fide that does not distinguish between the salvific moment and the continuing weakness of the flesh (sinful nature) is a salvation that is doomed to failure for "if we say we have no sin we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us." In other words, one cannot focus on good deeds and ignore bad deeds which are predetermined by our nature to happen.

I would call your "free examen" the "priesthood of believers", and there is no priesthood of believers that teaches individualism -- individual religion -- that is not subsumed under an Ecclesiastical structure. In other words, there is no "individual Christianity", that is to say, no "lone wolf" Christianity. Jesus, Himself, founded the Church, and Christians are to be Church Christians. Nor is there sacramental individualism in any church that is not based on "in extremis" situations.

Sola Gratia has received acceptance from the Catholic Church. The Joint Declaration on Justification by Faith says,

15.In faith we together hold the conviction that justification is the work of the triune God. The Father sent his Son into the world to save sinners. The foundation and presupposition of justification is the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ. Justification thus means that Christ himself is our righteousness, in which we share through the Holy Spirit in accord with the will of the Father. Together we confess: By grace alone, in faith in Christ's saving work and not because of any merit on our part, we are accepted by God and receive the Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts while equipping and calling us to good works.[11]

Allow me to be clear that there are still quibbles on both sides regarding some of the emphases, but there is also acceptance of the basic premise that "God Saves, and we don't save ourselves."

14 posted on 07/24/2012 4:00:50 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Those who truly support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: Salvation
"Decisions about your eternal life cannot be made on emotion such as you experienced. Reason has to enter into the picture too."

The repentent thief on the cross didn't need nor had time for "reason", all he knew was what he thought , what he believed ... what he wanted to believe and that was Christ was in fact LORD and could/ would "save" him and take him to be with Jesus in HIS Kingdom ... a place he believed actually existed.


and what was Jesus' reply .... ?

15 posted on 07/24/2012 4:07:32 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: knarf

The Good Thief was repentant.


16 posted on 07/24/2012 4:25:11 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: TexasRepublic
“I defy the pope and his laws! If God spares my life, in a few years a plow boy shall know more of the Scriptures than you do.

And look around, they do...

17 posted on 07/24/2012 4:40:17 PM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: Salvation
Decisions about your eternal life cannot be made on emotion such as you experienced. Reason has to enter into the picture too.

Love of the truth is not a bad emotion to have...Man's philosophical reasoning as you refer to will just provide a larger shovel for you to dig deeper into the ditch y'all have fallen into...

Col 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

18 posted on 07/24/2012 4:51:46 PM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: Salvation
"The Good Thief was repentant."

Why?

'Cause he was truly repentant in his heart ... or he got jailhouse religion?

And how is either position explained as a truth (in relation to the repentant thief)

19 posted on 07/24/2012 5:15:55 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: Te贸filo
It is very rare for a Catholic FReeper to recall that liberal Protestants are just as Protestant as the Fundamentalists are. Normally Fundamentalist Protestantism is condemned while liberal Protestantism receives all sorts of positive ecumenical attention from mainstream Catholics. This gives the idea that Catholicism does not so much object to Protestantism as it does to Fundamentalism, the logical corollary of which is that Catholics would be perfectly satisfied if all Fundamentalists merely became liberal Protestants.

However, the "intellectual suicide" charge is a bit of a mixed bag. Is Protestantism up a creek without an external, authoritative interpretive tradition? Yes it is (and as everyone knows, Fundamentalist Protestants argue among themselves merely by quoting verses back and forth, and no one ever convinces anyone else. But . . . if by "intellectual suicide" you mean they don't subject the statements of G-d to human reason or modern science before agreeing to believe them, then you are way off. People who believe so strongly will always be around. You may not agree with them, but they'll never become extinct, and certainly not because they don't subject the powers of G-d to human intellect.

Aside from that, how would you feel if someone said Catholics commit intellectual suicide because they believe in the virgin birth, the resurrection, or Fatima, hmmm? Sauce for the goose should be sauce for the gander, shouldn't it?

20 posted on 07/24/2012 6:23:34 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu!)
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To: Iscool
yeah Is..

for every “catholic” who leaves the faith for a protestant denomination about 90% leave the sect they joined after the first year and leave that sect then next year and so on. In fact a very large percentage of “catholics” who fall away become areligious after several years.

However, for every three “catholics” who leave the RCC - one protestant crosses the Tiber and becomes Catholic and stays and stays and stays - I believe less than 10% revert to protestantism.

So you get our dregs and we get your best - I love it.

Lurking’

21 posted on 07/24/2012 6:25:11 PM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Catholics=John 6:53-58 Everyone else=John 6:60-66)
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To: LurkingSince'98

My church is stuffed with guys who left the RC. What’s most remarkable about them is that they tend to be real men. Why did they leave the RC. My guess is that they’re afraid of exposing their boys to the priests. There is a similar exodus of men from the liberal denominations for similar reasons.


22 posted on 07/24/2012 7:02:30 PM PDT by ckilmer
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To: ckilmer
ck..

old old news and typical protestant disinformation

The verified peak of the priest abuse scandal was 1980 and it is has been down to levels below the 1960s for years.

see the study done by John Jay College of Criminal Justice which directly contradicts your premise: http://www.philvaz.com/apologetics/PriestAbuseScandal.htm

In our Diocese, for the last 6-8 years, if you want to work as a volunteer you are fingerprinted and have a CRIMINAL background check - do they do that in your sect. It is common knowledge that the protestant gay church elders are relatively unchecked in their preying on the protestant youth since there is and has been NO central and concerted effort to stamp it out.

It a little like the pot calling the kettle black.

BTW, the “catholics” that I am aware of who have fallen away are not Catholic at all, they believe in birth control and abortion, are in greater part divorced and remarried and very poorly catechized.

Again what leaves is the dregs or catholic don't wannbees.

Lurking’

23 posted on 07/24/2012 7:22:11 PM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Catholics=John 6:53-58 Everyone else=John 6:60-66)
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To: Te贸filo
the article makes an error in Sola Gratia. Salvation IS due to "grace alone" in the sense that we are saved only due to the grace of God and we cannot save ourselves. Our individual efforts of sanctification and cooperation with grace is what we must do to accept this freely given grace.

It's like a farmer who wants to take in a sparrow into a barn on a cold winter's night. The door is open, the sparrow just has to fly in. Actually it's more than that, the sparrow just has to truly desire to be saved and it is..

24 posted on 07/24/2012 11:43:41 PM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: fishtank; Te贸filo

Not completely, fishtank — as the article points out the fallacy of believing that one can come up with one’s own interpretation and then just say “Lord, Lord” and be saved. That led to the first generation of reformaters (Luther) being superseeded by the second (Calvin, Zwingli) and soon the third AnaBaptists, Unitarians etc.). Each time there is a new reformatting, with a new piece of orthodoxy thrown away, until finally one has the Universal Unitarians...


25 posted on 07/24/2012 11:46:19 PM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: TexasRepublic; Te贸filo
tr: One bishop named John Bell told Tyndale

Firstly, the story about John Bell is just that, a story with no real basis in fact. It's just another one of Foxe's embellishments/propaganda.

Furthermore the story itself in Foxe's tale doesn't say it was the bishop. it says that T had happened to be in the company of a certain divine, recounted for a learned man, and, in communing and disputing with him, he drove him to that issue, that the said great doctor burst out into these -- no mention of the bish.

26 posted on 07/25/2012 12:03:36 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: knarf; Salvation

Knarf — the thing is that it is not emotion or reason, rather emotion and reason. God appeals to us spiritually, emotionally, through reason etc. It is not one or the other to exclusion. some 19th century groups veered too much to reasoning while others veer too much to just raw emotion (see Benny Hinn) — sticking to either extreme is incorrect.


27 posted on 07/25/2012 12:10:05 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: LurkingSince'98; Iscool

L —> there are some posters who are not part of any protestant denomination — they’re not even Christian as they reject Christ’s divinity and the Trinity.


28 posted on 07/25/2012 12:11:25 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Cronos
Tell Salvation, HE'S the one that polarized and limited God's Grace.

I only questioned how he came to the conclusion that reason was involved.

Personally, the only reasoning I used to ask Jesus to save me was, I knew there was Hell, I was headed there, and I didn't want to go.

I believed the guy who was witnessing to me that Jesus wanted to 'save' me and take me to heaven when I died.

I was trained to be a Catholic and what's this 'saved' business ?

Whatever .. I didn't want to go to Hell and I wanted to believe the guy witnessing to me, so I followed a 'sinner's prayer' and asked Jesus to forgive me of my sins, save me and take me to Heaven when I died.

I think I tagged it with something like, "Oh yeah, and come into my life and be my Lord"

(but I'm not sure ... it was 1981)

29 posted on 07/25/2012 4:42:23 AM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: LurkingSince'98

I don’t believe you...


30 posted on 07/25/2012 5:14:05 AM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: Cronos

Still going with the personal false accusations since you seem to be incapable of defending your religion with scripture, or even discussing scripture, eh???


31 posted on 07/25/2012 5:21:49 AM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: knarf
I think I tagged it with something like, "Oh yeah, and come into my life and be my Lord"

So Jesus didn't come into your life and be your Lord, eh???

32 posted on 07/25/2012 5:24:39 AM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: Iscool
"So Jesus didn't come into your life and be your Lord, eh???"

Sorry .. zero's press secretary job's already filled ... thanx for playin'

33 posted on 07/25/2012 5:51:39 AM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: ckilmer
This is happy catholic talk that comes due to a base ignorance of protestant theological issues.

A standard, boilerplate dismissal.

Sorry, but I know the Protestant foundational tenets very well, inside and out. Although I don't claim to know all its 35,000 variations, I know and understand classical Protestantism.

Whether you believe me or not, is irrelevant, it doesn't change reality.

~Theo

34 posted on 07/25/2012 6:09:10 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: Cronos

Exactly. You understood my piece.

~Theo


35 posted on 07/25/2012 6:11:33 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: xzins

Thank you, Chaplain, for your input. As long as we can talk, we’ll talk! That’s a very important thing.

God bless,
~Theo


36 posted on 07/25/2012 6:13:23 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
It is very rare for a Catholic FReeper to recall that liberal Protestants are just as Protestant as the Fundamentalists are. Normally Fundamentalist Protestantism is condemned while liberal Protestantism receives all sorts of positive ecumenical attention from mainstream Catholics.

That might be because, hypothetically, a "mainstream" Catholic may be closer in belief and practice - or "non-practice - to a mainstream Protestant than an observant Catholic, a Catholic who thinks both in and with the Church.

If we accept this distinction, then I do not identify myself as a "mainstream Catholic." I am an observant one.

Goodness gracious no, I don't want Fundamentalists to become liberal Protestants. I want both groups to become CATHOLIC. (grin)

As for those who will try to "sauce my goose or gander" by reversing my observation, I would ask for their reasons, please.

~Theo

37 posted on 07/25/2012 6:20:25 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: ckilmer
My church is stuffed with guys who left the RC. What’s most remarkable about them is that they tend to be real men. Why did they leave the RC. My guess is that they’re afraid of exposing their boys to the priests. There is a similar exodus of men from the liberal denominations for similar reasons.

It is an established fact that less than one percent - or around one percent, I don't recall exactly at this minute - of priests between the 1940's and 2002 molested and underaged child. So the chance these men you speak about would've had their children molested by a priest was in itself pretty low.

In terms of sociology, the reasons why people move from one religion to another, or to no religion at all and back, are pretty complex. You should stop guessing, and just ask them why they did what they did. Doing so will help you put the sex-scandal in its proper perspective and stop spreading irrational fears through innuendo and baseless suppositions.

~Theo

38 posted on 07/25/2012 6:26:31 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: fishtank
The mainlines are dying because they have forsaken God’s WORD.

Simple.

No more complicated than that.

Why is your approach to Scripture better than theirs? Their assumptions and approach are basically the same. What makes yours "correct" and theirs "wrong"?

~Theo

39 posted on 07/25/2012 6:31:37 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: Cronos

See my #14

Cronos, Romans 10:14 says simply “whosoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

I’ve no doubt that a sincere “Lord Save Me” will get a person saved.

We can then go to the multitude of other scripture that explains in more detail what goes on in that simple, sincere plea to our Lord Jesus. Simply staying in Romans 10, we can go up to Romans 10: 9-10, and we see a process that Paul boils down to his Romans 10:13 statement.

There is both simplicity and expansiveness in the scripture itself.

The thief on the cross, however, illustrates that when push comes to shove the simplicity is valid.


40 posted on 07/25/2012 6:35:19 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Those who truly support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: Iscool

That’s predictable - the survey I believe was done by the baptists.


41 posted on 07/25/2012 7:07:16 AM PDT by LurkingSince'98 (Catholics=John 6:53-58 Everyone else=John 6:60-66)
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To: xzins
Cronos, Romans 10:14 says simply “whosoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” I’ve no doubt that a sincere “Lord Save Me” will get a person saved.

We agree. I said that those who just say "lord, lord' without the sincerity are not in the plus side

42 posted on 07/25/2012 7:41:16 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Iscool

We Christians hold the Bible to be the Word of God. Now whatever you want to hold to outside the Bible, is your choice.


43 posted on 07/25/2012 7:42:50 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Cronos

The Romans 10:13 statement is very simple: “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

It does not mention sincerity. Honestly, though, one should realize it is assuming sincerity. The value of Romans 10:9-10 is that it brings sincerity into play...”believe in your heart” can be seen as nothing other than true sincerity.


44 posted on 07/25/2012 8:18:07 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Those who truly support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: Te贸filo

The encroachment of liberal theology into conservative churches of all kinds has been a long, complex process, in which there were many players over a very long period of time, not the least of whom was one Thomas Aquinas and his unfortunate elevation of reason in relation to faith. No, I am not blaming him. No one person or group provides that single point of inflection on which the whole matter turned. To get an idea of the full scope of the problem, I highly recommend a book by Francis Schaeffer called Escape from Reason. Schaeffer was a Presbyterian, but his explanation of the history of western thought in relation to Christian theology is a powerful antidote to the temptation to make incendiary oversimplifications.


45 posted on 07/25/2012 8:25:40 AM PDT by Springfield Reformer (Winston Churchill: No Peace Till Victory!)
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To: ckilmer; Te贸filo
The Catholic church is also having a hard time. Without all the Hispanics coming in, the decline would be more evident. As with Protestants, there are areas that are better than most, but the decline is there.

TEA does have a point though. When a church, as a congregation or as a body, embraces social action to the exclusion of the Gospel, you will have trouble.

And it doesn't matter if that action is to the political left or right. Once the church becomes a PAC, you are in trouble.

46 posted on 07/25/2012 9:23:12 AM PDT by redgolum ("God is dead" -- Nietzsche. "Nietzsche is dead" -- God.)
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To: Cronos
Congrationulations Cronos, you are a Lutheran!

(joke)

47 posted on 07/25/2012 9:26:23 AM PDT by redgolum ("God is dead" -- Nietzsche. "Nietzsche is dead" -- God.)
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To: Te贸filo
It is an established fact that less than one percent - or around one percent, I don't recall exactly at this minute - of priests between the 1940's and 2002 molested and underaged child. So the chance these men you speak about would've had their children molested by a priest was in itself pretty low.

That's the propaganda, anyway...

There was a story out yesterday where for the first time, a Catholic leader was convicted and sentenced to 6 years in prison for covering up the sex crimes of numerous priests...

No one knows how many priests are out there molesting and raping children...The one percent you are referring to are the ones who have been caught...

48 posted on 07/25/2012 9:34:20 AM PDT by Iscool (You mess with me, you mess with the WHOLE trailerpark...)
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To: Iscool
It is an established fact that less than one percent - or around one percent, I don't recall exactly at this minute - of priests between the 1940's and 2002 molested and underaged child. So the chance these men you speak about would've had their children molested by a priest was in itself pretty low.

That's the propaganda, anyway...

Actually, no. That's what we know by studying the available data. If you have an alternate set of data contradicting those findings, now is the time for you to share it.

No one knows how many priests are out there molesting and raping children...The one percent you are referring to are the ones who have been caught...

This argument from silence is a logical fallacy. In fact, it proves too much, for we don't know either how many ministers, elders, deacons, and members of your congregation, of your family even, are "out there molesting and raping children..."

If you living in fear makes you happy, go right ahead and live like that. But I suggest you keep the fearmongering to yourself.

~Theo

49 posted on 07/25/2012 10:54:04 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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To: Springfield Reformer
I'll look it up! I've read stuff by Francis Schaeffer and I do like him. (His son Frankie, well, that's something else).

Thank you kindly,
~Theo

50 posted on 07/25/2012 11:03:57 AM PDT by Te骹ilo (Visit Vivificat! - http://www.vivificat.org - A Catholic Blog of News, Commentary and Opinion)
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