Posts by don-o

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  • Is FreeRepublic Pro Harry Reid?

    09/18/2014 10:46:40 AM PDT · 536 of 747
    don-o to Kansas58


  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/18/2014 9:34:18 AM PDT · 278 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    The Orthodox Church holds Holy Scripture as the highest and ultimate authority. It became quite clear, quite early that Scripture was easily twisted and perverted. The guardians and teachers needed more than words on paper.

    Their connection to the Apostles was what established their bona fides. So a Bishop could say "I teach the interpretation that Polycarp who was taught by John taught."

    If there are two different interpretations and both say they are right and the Holy Spirit confirmed it to them and their opponent is of the devil...what then?

    Therefore, Ignatius' admonition that nothing be done without the Bishop.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/18/2014 8:55:55 AM PDT · 275 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    As for reformed Baptists, we share most beliefs in common with the confessionally reformed, excepting the baptism of infants, which is exampled nowhere in Scripture, and appears contrary to the testimonial function of water baptism.

    You state this as if it is no big deal. And I have heard from others about "essentials" that must be adhered to as a test of orthodoxy. Here are two diametrically opposed views of Baptism. Both cannot be right. Both claim support from Scripture.

    Found this on a Reformed website.

    In baptism God promises by grace alone

    to forgive our sins;
    to adopt us into the Body of Christ, the church;
    to send the Holy Spirit daily to renew and cleanse us;
    and to resurrect us to eternal life.

    When I is was an Independent Baptist, I was taught that Baptism is an external symbol of an internal reality.

    How is this anything but confusion? One group says that Baptism is how we get our sins forgiven and another teaches that repenting and accepting Jesus as personal Savior is how we get our sins forgiven, and both pile Scripture upon Scripture.

    That Reformed site calls Baptism a Sacrament. Baptists of my former ilk would not even use the word. They called it an ordinance (not sure if they capitalize it).

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/17/2014 8:52:22 AM PDT · 265 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    Context, my FRiend. Context! We have writings from Athanasius that explain and qualify what he means by “sufficiency”. He allows that the Arians had an interpretation of Scripture. But, their interpretation is wrong because it denied what had ever been believed. Arius denied orthodoxy.

    This is the vital point. In a contest of interpretations, which one wins? Athanasius appeals to an authority other than HIS own or the mere words of Scripture. I will snip a quote of his from


    "For not only in outward form did those wicked men dissemble, putting on as the Lord says sheep's clothing, and appearing like unto whited sepulchres; but they took those divine words in their mouth, while they inwardly cherished evil intentions. And the first to put on this appearance was the serpent, the inventor of wickedness from the beginning-the devil,-who, in disguise, conversed with Eve, and forthwith deceived her. But after him and with him are all inventors of unlawful heresies, who indeed refer to the Scriptures, but do not hold such opinions as the saints [meaning orthodox saints or Fathers -- see article at top] have handed down, and receiving them as the traditions of men, err, because they do not rightly know them nor their power. Therefore Paul justly praises the Corinthians, because their opinions were in accordance with his traditions. And the Lord most righteously reproved the Jews, saying, 'Wherefore do ye also transgress the commandments of God on account of your traditions.' For they changed the commandments they received from God after their own understanding, preferring to observe the traditions of men. And about these, a little after, the blessed Paul again gave directions to the Galatians who were in danger thereof, writing to them, 'If any man preach to you aught else than that ye have received, let him be accursed.'" (Festal Letter 2.6)

    He asserts that tradition informs and supports his interpretation. The Council ratifies it and from here forward the line is clearly drawn. Orthodoxy is defined. Subsequent councils could then require Bishops to affirm Nicean orthodoxy.

    Holding that Athanasius relied solely on Scripture must be understood in the context of what his other writings show HIS understanding to be. Athanasius surely held also with the transmission of apostolic authority, and I expect he would have dealt with your nutty neighbors in a couple of short paragraphs. But, that’s for further discussion.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 7:36:06 PM PDT · 256 of 284
    don-o to metmom

    The Apostles at Jerusalem recognized the need to settle a dispute. Why did they not simply search the Scriptures?

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 6:21:40 PM PDT · 251 of 284
    don-o to metmom
    And up until that time, Christians simply put their faith in Jesus for salvation and were saved without having all their doctrine and dogma defined for them.

    What was going on in Acts 15?

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 4:07:53 PM PDT · 247 of 284
    don-o to metmom
    And any one of us can do that for another brother or sister in Christ because the compass is Scripture.

    You can absolutely do that. You can also ignore the first millennium and the Ecumenical Councils, modeled on Acts 15, for defining dogma. You can assert that you have correct belief concerning the two natures of Christ in one Person from Bible study.

    You could not have done that in 325. It was all up in the air.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 12:50:11 PM PDT · 241 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer; roamer_1
    If you’re going to have church you’re going to have heresy because you’re going to have sin. Not that that’s a good thing, but it is a reality. 1 Cor 11:19 speaks both to this inevitability and to its purpose, to showcase the approval of those who remain true.

    I'm going to keep pressing for an acknowledgement of the way things actually played out. Here's a nice little article that I hope you will read that emphasizes context.

    Athanasius Contra Mundum: The Courage to Act Alone

    I will continue to challenge where I am seeing reasoning from conclusions such as,

    This is correlated to the loose network, because the ultimate decisional authority still rests with the local congregation. As Roamer says, if some local group decides to go down a path that leads to error, the remainder of the network is free to continue in the truth.

    St Paul must not have gotten the memo on that, if one is to judge from his repeated directions to the erring assemblies to straighten up and fly right. Now, if that type of authority vanished with the death of John, then we have a problem with Athanasius and all the Ecumenical Councils.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 9:34:09 AM PDT · 234 of 284
    don-o to roamer_1
    Ergo, one wonders why there is a need for an 'assuredly (if conditionally) infallible magisterium'. It seems folks can git er done without one.

    Which is all well and good until somebody brings out the snakes or starts passing around the poison bottle.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/16/2014 9:26:43 AM PDT · 233 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    I have been absent from the board for a few days, but, if you care to continue....

    ...only God can be the true head, because only God can exert direct authority on every individual member by His Spirit. A highly structured authoritarian form of human hierarchy is at odds with this basic principle.

    Would a loosely structured form be acceptable?

    Of course God is the Head. The Church is the Body of Christ. I am unclear on how your idea of the direct authority of God on the believer works out. If I were called down for walking disorderly by one of your elders and my defense was "God told me to....", then what? I'll anticipate that you have some process that relies on an authority that supersedes the individual's autonomy and competence.

    I won't get into the specifics on Peter. I will just say that the Orthodox view is that our Bishops preside in concert in love to guide the Church.

    Likewise, I am not the guy who will enter into discussions of the Western Church's (Roman) various and sundry troubles. Not, that it's uninteresting to me; but, they have worthy defenders on this board and my participation requires a subtlety that demands more of me that I wish to strive for.

    So whatever comes from apostolic authority as such is not the imposition of apostolic will or opinion, but by providence we can know it reflects the mind of God Himself, and we expect the leading of God's Spirit in the hearts of believers to be consistent with how He has providentially already led His foundation layers, the Apostles. And Protestants are already in agreement with this principle with respect to the apostles, who have had a unique role in establishing divine truth. See for example the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15.

    I am not seeing the providential leadership in the fractured histories over the past half millennium. The first millennium does show us that the Church did use the authority model of Acts 15. Then came 1054. And 1522.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/13/2014 7:51:58 AM PDT · 147 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer; roamer_1
    This is one of the main reasons the New Covenant was to be so much superior to the Old Covenant: They shall all be taught of God. No longer are we to be subservient to a mediatorial class.

    Yes. But, is it valid to use this concept to deny a hierarchy of authority? Whence can come the unity for which our Lord prayed?

    What do you do with the council in Acts 15? If believers were to be "all taught of God", then how could there have been disputes about the Gentiles?

    It's one thing to opine in 2014 with the questions (or at least the positions)seemingly resolved, or at least clarified. It is another thing to try to think of the conditions in which the great controversies first arose; and then to look at what was done with them - how and why.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/13/2014 4:16:47 AM PDT · 146 of 284
    don-o to verga
    blatantly ridiculous site.

    That article might be useful for teaching the fallacy of reasoning from conclusions.

  • Woman of 24 found to have no cerebellum in her brain

    09/12/2014 3:38:17 PM PDT · 66 of 71
    don-o to Mrs. Don-o
    It's a little disappointing that almost all the comments were jokes.

    Expectations have fallen ever lower in that area to avoid disappointment and frustration.

  • Woman of 24 found to have no cerebellum in her brain

    09/12/2014 2:30:45 PM PDT · 60 of 71
    don-o to Mrs. Don-o


  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 10:00:08 AM PDT · 120 of 284
    don-o to CynicalBear

    Bait declined.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 9:39:00 AM PDT · 114 of 284
    don-o to CynicalBear

    Let’s keep the apples separated from the oranges.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 9:25:17 AM PDT · 112 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    but to be fully consistent, you would then also have to recognize that case law is mutable and can change course,

    Which did happen with the iconoclast heresy.

    but the statutes are fixed by the legislature, which in our analogy would be the Supreme Legislator, God Himself.

    Which leaves the question of the authority / venue for settling disputes. Insisting that it must be words on paper (or papyrus) won't stand up to logical and historical scrutiny. This is not a denigration of the Scriptures, at all. But, it is an affirmation of the teaching office of the Bishops. Doctrine must be in harmony with the Scripture, rightly divided.

    In my journey, I looked for the Church after the events recorded in the 66 books had passed. I looked for who had the "say so" and what THEY said and how that turned out in the intervening centuries.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 8:48:37 AM PDT · 104 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer

    cut and paste. I guess since it’s html it does not hot link.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 8:06:18 AM PDT · 97 of 284
    don-o to Claud; roamer_1
    The NT was originally not a bound book published for personal home instruction. It was a collection of documents circulated and read liturgically.

    I do not dispute that. I entered the conversation after the oft repeated wranglings about Peter when roamer tossed that softball about a "clear word." That rekindled the memory of my own spiritual journey when I had to grapple with why I believed what I thought I believed. And among the first, the question of authority had to be dealt with.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 7:57:36 AM PDT · 96 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    But more importantly, whether by memory or by reference to a physical text, Polycarp is following in a long tradition, exampled by both Christ Himself and His apostles, of citing to the word of God as the dispositive authority in any contest of ideas about God and Christian truth.

    But, that knife cuts two ways. The heretics were not ignorant of Holy Scripture. As much as I find snip quotes sometimes tedious, I will submit:

    A new reformation was therefore necessary. Marcion felt himself entrusted with this commission, and the church which he gathered recognized this vocation of his to be the reformer. 35 He did not appeal to a new revelation such as he presupposed for Paul. As the Pauline Epistles and an authentic "evangelion of the Lord" were in existence, it was only necessary to purify these from interpolations, and restore the genuine Paulinism which was just the Gospel itself.

    Marcion From Adolf Von Harnack, History of Dogma

    But when I want to win my case, what do I do? I use the authority of my office to cite to the real authority, statutory law and the case law that interprets it. I am recognizing in that act that the true authority does not rest in my office, but in legal truth (such as it is).

    Was not Marcion doing exactly this? And it worked, requiring several ecumenical councils over hundreds of years to continue to refute the heresy and preserve the chain of orthodoxy (right belief).

    Is it fair to say that the Holy Scripture is "statutory law" and the councils are "case law"?

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 6:27:26 AM PDT · 84 of 284
    don-o to roamer_1
    I studied on this a bit. There are protocols that need to be followed for an itinerant rabbi to preach in a synagogue. Submittable in writing, and what not, for approval...

    That is interesting. More, please on how this would relate to the early church, in light of Stephen's martyrdom after his address in the synagogue.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 6:13:25 AM PDT · 81 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer; roamer_1
    Nice to meet you Mr. don-o.

    Likewise. My participation on the RF is rare, as it is mostly a temptation and stumbling block to me. From time to time I do lurk and will chime in when something catches my eye, as did my FRiend roamer's comment about the "clear word."

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 6:08:35 AM PDT · 79 of 284
    don-o to roamer_1
    Let me introduce you to my good FRiend, don-o

    I can ratify that portion of the post...the rest, meh. Memory becomes spotty; thank God for search engines. Greek? Well, they have the best food; Russians have the best liurgical music. Dogma is the same. As with the Antiochians but as with the Greeks, I find myself distracted and confounded by the Byzantine chant. I'm sure that's the American in me.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/12/2014 6:03:25 AM PDT · 78 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer
    Check out the quote tables. Either the chap had a blazing amazing photographic memory, or he had some of those NT texts laying around.

    It's not surprising to to see Polycarp using phrases that also appear in what was later received as Holy Scripture. He thought and wrote with the mind of the Church as did Paul and John. And, I think it quite likely that memory was much better in their day than it is today - they relied on it more.

    My point is that the post Apostolic Fathers taught with the authority derived from their office; not from their ability to string Bible quotes together.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/11/2014 6:45:22 PM PDT · 55 of 284
    don-o to Springfield Reformer; roamer_1
    And this part boggles my mind. How can anyone think they didn't have the Gospels and the epistles within the first generation or two?

    You must account for what was normative and authoritative in the interim. It cannot be disputed that there was not a, what we call "New Testament." Polycarp and Ingatius had to fulfill their bishoprics without it. They defeated heresy without it.

    You have to account for that. The heresies they refuted could not be refuted by Old Testament Scripture, because the Incarnation and the Resurrection had rocked the world. The heretics, like Marcion and the Gnostics were coming at the Church with ideas that rationalized or mystified the Incarnation.

    So without a New Testament, they refuted the heresies and forged a link in the chain of orthodoxy (right belief). How do you account for that?

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/11/2014 4:53:31 PM PDT · 45 of 284
    don-o to roamer_1

    Ah, yes. Those 66 books that the Apostles and several generations of early Christians had no concept of.

  • The Rise of the Papacy

    09/11/2014 3:41:58 PM PDT · 37 of 284
    don-o to roamer_1
    The difference is that their traditions, together or respectively, cannot displace the clear Word.

    What, pray tell, is this clear word? And where is it to be found?

  • Obama declares war on his bad poll numbers

    09/11/2014 6:56:22 AM PDT · 1 of 17
  • The Dying Russians (she says it's from broken hearts)

    09/10/2014 6:29:36 PM PDT · 50 of 77
    don-o to Lazamataz

    Great tagline. It’s sad and sorry that we have lacked the ability and the foresight to negotiate straight up with Russia and achieve a true mutually beneficial relationship.

  • The Dying Russians (she says it's from broken hearts)

    09/10/2014 6:20:02 PM PDT · 47 of 77
    don-o to Mrs. Don-o

    Ain’t that sump’in?

  • Presidential Address on Islamic State Threat (Live thread)

    09/10/2014 6:14:49 PM PDT · 295 of 607
    don-o to Boardwalk
  • The Dying Russians (she says it's from broken hearts)

    09/10/2014 5:57:37 PM PDT · 37 of 77
    don-o to Lazamataz; Mrs. Don-o
    Russian people — good people. ALL people — good people.

    We had a friend from Kazakhstan who would say: "Koryak" (our Vanya's ethnicity) "good people. Very good. Chechnyan bad people. Very bad."

  • The Hail Mary of a Protestant

    09/03/2014 8:08:55 AM PDT · 42 of 941
    don-o to ShadowAce
    Yup--kinda. I pray to the Father as Jesus instructed. I don't pray to the Son, though I do pray in His name. Why pray to a creation ...

    Ancient heresy.

  • Sean Connery says Scotland should vote for independence from Britain

    08/31/2014 3:48:17 AM PDT · 55 of 57
    don-o to Kenny Bunk


  • Federal judge halts key part of Texas abortion law

    08/29/2014 3:47:34 PM PDT · 1 of 14
    Courts are out of control
  • 5% continues to support 100% of FR

    08/28/2014 8:50:47 AM PDT · 250 of 533
    don-o to kabar

    It is sad to see you getting dog piled. I wish some folks would understand that trying to put themselves above the rest of us, smacks of elitism and turns a lot of folks OFF.

  • 5% continues to support 100% of FR

    08/28/2014 7:57:20 AM PDT · 212 of 533
    don-o to xzins

    When I first used it, many moons ago, it was frowned on.

  • 5% continues to support 100% of FR

    08/28/2014 7:56:20 AM PDT · 211 of 533
    don-o to bigdaddy45
    Does Free Republic allow paid advertising?

    Do you see any? Let me answer for you.

    No you don't. And that is increasingly rare and a distinctive that we need to support.

  • 5% continues to support 100% of FR

    08/28/2014 7:17:05 AM PDT · 197 of 533
    don-o to xzins
    My sense now is that there is a threshold of use that should signal to a person....

    Ah, yes. The signal. For me, it came maybe six months after I signed on and I became aware that certain expenses needed to be met. It is simply the way I live my life - I prefer to pay for what I consume. I believe what I was taught about no free lunch. Now, there are "in kind" payments. If my neighbor brings me a pie, I could repay with a loaf of fresh baked bread.

    Perhaps some consider their comments here as such.

    My electric company probably isn't open to my bread as payment. And it's really GOOD bread.

    At one time, I was credited with coining "FReeploader." Maybe we can get that into the next set of Oxford Dictionary new words.

  • The White House Press Secretary Isn’t Telling the Truth. And I Can Prove It.

    08/26/2014 11:08:45 AM PDT · 1 of 16
    Not Breaking News.

    First comment at the source is pretty good.

  • The Islamic Jihad Conquest Formula

    08/21/2014 6:27:53 AM PDT · 57 of 119
    don-o to Travis McGee


  • Rick Perry Becomes the 2016 GOP Frontrunner (you have to watch the ad in the story!)

    08/20/2014 7:05:08 AM PDT · 20 of 49
    don-o to TexasFreeper2009
    Perry/Palin dream ticket

    Palin will not be on the ticket.

  • Rick Perry Becomes the 2016 GOP Frontrunner (you have to watch the ad in the story!)

    08/20/2014 7:02:24 AM PDT · 18 of 49
    don-o to cotton1706

    I can definitely see myself supporting Perry. He needs to be forming alliances and lining up endorsements even this early.

  • The Ancient Mass in the “House Churches” was not as Informal as Many Think

    08/20/2014 4:31:19 AM PDT · 13 of 138
    don-o to Tax-chick

    Excellent! I hear some C.S. Lewis influence.

  • On race, America has far to go. Ferguson won't be the last flash point

    08/19/2014 6:10:50 AM PDT · 154 of 264
    don-o to NFHale
    Damn... I missed the Zotting....

    Alex was a disgrace to the FReeper class of '98. Good to see that no one is immune to the ban on racism.

    One would have thought he might have learned something over all those years. Red wine does have health benefits. Consuming a bottle a day, however has other consequences.

  • What’s wrong with the ALS bucket challenge?—UPDATED

    08/18/2014 7:43:40 AM PDT · 2 of 28
    don-o to don-o

    That last line should have been in a comment - NOT in the article. Sorry.

  • What’s wrong with the ALS bucket challenge?—UPDATED

    08/18/2014 7:42:47 AM PDT · 1 of 28
  • Al Gore sues Al Jazeera for fraud

    08/15/2014 9:53:14 AM PDT · 33 of 62
    don-o to b4its2late
     photo algore_nam.jpg
  • Al Gore sues Al Jazeera for fraud

    08/15/2014 9:29:54 AM PDT · 1 of 62
  • Sharpton Uses Rand Paul To Take Civil Rights Shot at Hillary

    08/15/2014 6:19:03 AM PDT · 11 of 14
    don-o to governsleastgovernsbest
     photo rand-paul-eddie-haskell_zpse1e91676.gif

    You're looking especially lovely today, Reverend Sharpton.