Catholic Church no longer swears by truth of the Bible


Catholic Church no longer swears by truth of the Bible
By Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent

THE hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church has published a teaching document instructing the faithful that some parts of the Bible are not actually true.

The Catholic bishops of England, Wales and Scotland are warning their five million worshippers, as well as any others drawn to the study of scripture, that they should not expect “total accuracy” from the Bible.

“We should not expect to find in Scripture full scientific accuracy or complete historical precision,” they say in The Gift of Scripture.

The document is timely, coming as it does amid the rise of the religious Right, in particular in the US.

Some Christians want a literal interpretation of the story of creation, as told in Genesis, taught alongside Darwin’s theory of evolution in schools, believing “intelligent design” to be an equally plausible theory of how the world began.

But the first 11 chapters of Genesis, in which two different and at times conflicting stories of creation are told, are among those that this country’s Catholic bishops insist cannot be “historical”. At most, they say, they may contain “historical traces”.

The document shows how far the Catholic Church has come since the 17th century, when Galileo was condemned as a heretic for flouting a near-universal belief in the divine inspiration of the Bible by advocating the Copernican view of the solar system. Only a century ago, Pope Pius X condemned Modernist Catholic scholars who adapted historical-critical methods of analysing ancient literature to the Bible.

In the document, the bishops acknowledge their debt to biblical scholars. They say the Bible must be approached in the knowledge that it is “God’s word expressed in human language” and that proper acknowledgement should be given both to the word of God and its human dimensions.

They say the Church must offer the gospel in ways “appropriate to changing times, intelligible and attractive to our contemporaries”.

The Bible is true in passages relating to human salvation, they say, but continue: “We should not expect total accuracy from the Bible in other, secular matters.”

They go on to condemn fundamentalism for its “intransigent intolerance” and to warn of “significant dangers” involved in a fundamentalist approach.

“Such an approach is dangerous, for example, when people of one nation or group see in the Bible a mandate for their own superiority, and even consider themselves permitted by the Bible to use violence against others.”

Of the notorious anti-Jewish curse in Matthew 27:25, “His blood be on us and on our children”, a passage used to justify centuries of anti-Semitism, the bishops say these and other words must never be used again as a pretext to treat Jewish people with contempt. Describing this passage as an example of dramatic exaggeration, the bishops say they have had “tragic consequences” in encouraging hatred and persecution. “The attitudes and language of first-century quarrels between Jews and Jewish Christians should never again be emulated in relations between Jews and Christians.”

As examples of passages not to be taken literally, the bishops cite the early chapters of Genesis, comparing them with early creation legends from other cultures, especially from the ancient East. The bishops say it is clear that the primary purpose of these chapters was to provide religious teaching and that they could not be described as historical writing.

Similarly, they refute the apocalyptic prophecies of Revelation, the last book of the Christian Bible, in which the writer describes the work of the risen Jesus, the death of the Beast and the wedding feast of Christ the Lamb.

The bishops say: “Such symbolic language must be respected for what it is, and is not to be interpreted literally. We should not expect to discover in this book details about the end of the world, about how many will be saved and about when the end will come.”

In their foreword to the teaching document, the two most senior Catholics of the land, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Archbishop of Westminster, and Cardinal Keith O’Brien, Archbishop of St Andrew’s and Edinburgh, explain its context.

They say people today are searching for what is worthwhile, what has real value, what can be trusted and what is really true.

The new teaching has been issued as part of the 40th anniversary celebrations of Dei Verbum, the Second Vatican Council document explaining the place of Scripture in revelation. In the past 40 years, Catholics have learnt more than ever before to cherish the Bible. “We have rediscovered the Bible as a precious treasure, both ancient and ever new.”

A Christian charity is sending a film about the Christmas story to every primary school in Britain after hearing of a young boy who asked his teacher why Mary and Joseph had named their baby after a swear word. The Breakout Trust raised £200,000 to make the 30-minute animated film, It’s a Boy. Steve Legg, head of the charity, said: “There are over 12 million children in the UK and only 756,000 of them go to church regularly.

That leaves a staggering number who are probably not receiving basic Christian teaching.”

BELIEVE IT OR NOT

UNTRUE

Genesis ii, 21-22

So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept he took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh; and the rib which the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man

Genesis iii, 16

God said to the woman [after she was beguiled by the serpent]: “I will greatly multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.”

Matthew xxvii, 25

The words of the crowd: “His blood be on us and on our children.”

Revelation xix,20

And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had worked the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshipped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with brimstone.”

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,13509-1811332,00.html

*BLOGGERS NOTE: TO READ THE DOCUMENT, GOOGLE THE GIFT OF SCRIPTURE 2005 AND YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE PDF FILE.

About these ads

202 Responses

  1. What?

  2. This is scary stuff. I had no idea that the Catholic church had compromised with the world to this extent.

  3. Incredible. Or maybe very predictable, biblically speaking. Thank you for your excellent work on this blog–this keeps me informed.

  4. “Catholic Church No Longer Swears by Truth of the Bible

    Seriously. Did it ever?

    • Indeed the RCC did in the long history of the Church teach and believe that the Bible was the Word of God, it has been since the so-called German Rationalism, with Schleiermacher and that of Schelling and Hegal, etc., which came from liberal Protestantism that the modern Church (so-called) have lost the ground, that Theology proceeds ever hand in hand with the life of the Church, from the belief in the Holy and Sacred Scripture. And here the theology of the Reformation was more exegetical than speculative, and also the balance of faith, reason and revelation, which we can see even in the Apostles themselves, but especially in St. Paul! Myself, I am no “fundamentalist”, but I am a certain “biblicist”, and certainly believe in the authority of the Holy Scripture! However, when we also lose the wisdom and the certain reading of the Church Fathers, which are not infallible, but still part of the very spirit and history of the Church, we will become impoverished. As the historical and Spirit of Christ is still somehow the mystery centred in the Incarnational Church itself! (1 Tim. 3:15-16)

      • “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” (Isa. 40:8, NASB) Indeed the Word of God is much more than ink, and even the scribe, but “spirit & truth”!

      • Robert,

        The RCC believed the Word of God was the bible you say except anyone who tried to get that word into the hands of common man, were burnt at the stake. The church was indeed central, because there was no finished revelation compiled yet. It was still being written by the apostles. Now that we have the full revelation of God in His word, the RCC continues to say, no it doesn’t, and keeps adding to the word of God dogmas apart from scripture.

      • Sue: You always want to take the Church back into the Medieval period, and act as if the Church, both Catholic and Protestant has not progressed, at least in culture and humanity. And whether we like it or not, it certainly has! Though of course there is no perfection here, and this does not imply that there are not still huge doctrinal differences. But simply the whole Church Historical, must be seen as a whole somewhat. Certainly the non-Christians, both pagan and religious, don’t see the big differences in the Historical Church. This is part of my point, in this grave time of postmodernity, both Catholics and Protestants need to have some kind of approachment toward this now, both the modern and postmodern world, and certainly in a post-christian age. The enemy is not so much each other, as this godless and fallen society! Also, whether we like it or not, there are many spiritual Christians who are theistic evolutionists, both Catholic and Protestant! (Note, I am myself an Old Earth creationist) But, see people like the fine English or British Christian, Alister McGrath, etc., the list is rather long! I know “Fundamentalism” does’t like to acknowledge any of this, but thankfully salvation and the Body of Christ is not based on “creational” views! And the Bible does not really make a case the “age” of the earth, but it is a Book of spiritual truth, in Jesus Christ! (2 Cor. 4:6) Note too, the Bible also has different biblical “genres”, something many fundamentalists simply miss or overlook. We can see the belief in biblical “genre” in even the Reformation Fathers! (Genre: a kind of, or type of literature.) See for example the Wisdom Literature in the OT.

  5. Let’s see, they spiritualize much of the Bible to fit their own ideology, so is it any wonder they have to mythologize more?

  6. Just now understanding the bible, For those of you who have shouted, a BIBLE, A BIBLE, we have a BIBLE! can you now understand this…AS FAR AS IT IS TRANSLATED CORRECTLY…I wonder where that statement came from and WHEN, and by whom?

    • Dennis,
      I made a note at the end of the article. You can google the pdf file and read it all for yourself.

    • Ah, Dennis is referring to the Book of Mormon with his first quote and Articles of the Faith (LDS) with the second. Now, does that mean you are studying to be a Mormon?

      • Still studying the scriptures after 61 years…havent found anything that comes even close to what the Book of Mormon has. I guess I will leave this earth a Mormon. This just seemed to leap off the page at me when I read it…

      • Dennis Lundberg,
        I can refute the whole LDS faith. I am ex-Mormon, and if you care to take a gander at my blog and peruse all the stuff I have on Mormonism, you may learn a lot. Otherwise, I’d be very happy to discuss Mormonism with you via e-mail, which is on my blog. However, this article is about Romanism, so Mormonism is off-topic.

        irishanglican, Rev. 22 is only about the book of Rev. Mormons know that. The BOM doesn’t add or subtract from the Rev. so that passage has no bearing. Must stick with context. The “Inspired Version” of the Bible – i.e., Joseph Smith Translation – does add to and subtract from Rev so it falls under the curse – as does Smith.

      • Even so-called correct Mormon’s believe the Book of Mormon is but “another Testament” of the NT. Which in reality it cannot be! (Rev. 22: 18-19)

      • I only quote that verse to show that one cannot add to the Canon of Scripture, it was an application really, since it (the Book of Revelation) is in the place of finality.

      • irishanglican said, “I only quote that verse to show that one cannot add to the Canon of Scripture, it was an application really, since it (the Book of Revelation) is in the place of finality.”

        Read the passage IN CONTEXT. It is only about the book of Revelation. Cults know that and have responded to it for decades. According to that passage, one can mess with any other part of the Bible and not violate that passage.

        The proper way to use that passage is to show a principle God has established with other passages, including the Rev. passage:
        Deut. 4:2, 12:32; 1 Cor. 4:6; Jer. 23:30. Then hit them with this one:
        Prov. 30:5-6: “Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.”

      • I’m not sure really we should not quote the verse in the context that I have? We can see that the quote comes really from Deut. 4:2, as “Deuteronomy” is a Book of the “second law”, or the so-called preaching of the original law given to Israel at Sinai. “The authority and sufficiency of God’s word is implied in the command ‘not add…nor take from’.” Israel and the Church is to submit to God’s full and entire Word! See also Deut. 12:32.

      • The context of Rev. is “this book.” It is not a quote from Deut. It is about the book of Rev, i.e., “this book.” The Bible was not put together as a unified book for at least 200 years after it was written, so it could not refer the Bible – only to the particular book. Which is why I say it is a great passage to use in conjunction with several others to demonstrate the principle that God condemns adding or subtracting from his Word, but only Proverbs is a general statement not referring to a particular set of writings.

      • @Glenn: I would have to disagree about Rev. 22: 18-19, and the most obvious connection with Deut. 4:2 ; 12:32! See also Deut. 18: 20-22. The connection here is again most obvious and significant! The Book of Revelation did not fall out of the sky! In a very true sense it is the great explanation of the ‘Salvation History of God’, and it has its own “genre”, both as “apocalypse” or “revelation” (verse 1:1) and as “prophecy” (1:3; 22:7; 9, 10, 18-19 / see too chapter 10:11, as 19:10). I would encourage you to do some work here! I have myself more commentaries on the Book of Revelation, than I would care to admit! ;) All kinds and all or many different interpretations!

        *It is no mistake btw, that God put this Book of Revelation, last, as to Canon! Note Canon in this sense is also spiritual, no matter when God put the BIBLE together, as we have it! And also btw, I would see myself the Book of Revelation, as in itself, to be written very early, perhaps even before 70 A.D.? But we must not let this press our interpretation into some kind of full Preterist position! I am just not of that persuasion myself! :)

      • You are denying plain hermeneutics. That passage is ONLY about the book in which it is written. God didn’t put that book at the end our Bible – man assembled it. And it was assembled in a logical order. If you want to claim that God decided the order of books, then you have a problem with the O.T., in that our arrangement is not the same as the Jews’. Which arrangement was of God?

      • @Glenn: YOU are mixing “hermeneutics” and “Canon”! They are very different. But when GOD put the Bible together (as we have it today), is indeed part of God’s sovereign purpose! Note here too the whole subject of when the Bible was first put into print! (Gutenburg, Eramus, Luther’s German Bible, Tyndale…to the Mathhew’s Bible, Great Bible, Geneva Bible, The Bishops Bible, to of course the KJV!)..there are others of course! But here too, let me recommend a fine book today, by Donald Brake: A Visual History of the English Bible, Baker 2008. Just a grand book! With plates, drawings and pictures! A must read, and book to keep!

        *I am not looking just at raw scholarship here, as God’s grace, will and purpose. With the Reformation, the Bible spiritually came into its own place before the masses! This is one of the reasons I will die a Reformational and Reformed Christian myself! Luther and Calvin have become MY teachers, in the main until my end anyway. In fact, Luther is THE MAN! ;) (Without God’s grace & providence he simply gets martyred!)

      • Hermeneutics is indeed the right thing here. The book must be taken in context. Most scholars I have read agree that the passage in context is only about Revelation.

        As for Bible history, I don’t need another book. I have a shelf full and have studied Bible history for a couple decades, right along with every other apologetic subject.

        God did not put the Bible together as a book – man did. The books of the Bible existed a long time before they were collected into one volume. The O.T. existed as a defined collection by the time of the CHurch, but the N.T. did not. So anyone reading Revelation before all the books were collected in one volume would have understood that passage to be only about the book of revelation.

        As for Calvin and Luther being your main teachers – I pity you. You have only taken a small step away from Romanism. Calvinism especially misrepresents God. But that is another topic of discussion for another time and another place.

      • Glenn: You can spare the “pity” mate, in fact it is thinking like yours, that is misses the great Church Catholic of God, in the historical & theological reality! So you sir, are the one that might want to re-check “yourself” and your sources! You remind me of those who have been self taught, and then think they knew almost everything, because they have read a few, or even alot of books! (I love books btw) Of course there is nothing wrong with teaching yourself, if you in fact are reading the Holy Scripture in “spirit and truth”, and with the many pastors and teachers God has given the Church Catholic over the many centuries! (Eph. 4: 11-12) Note there is a real “Catholic” unity in the true Body of Christ! (verses 13-16), and of course Christian Love is always the top-stone!

        Btw, Luther & Calvin, as many of the other top-tier Reformers (like the Swiss), are also some of my foundation (Zwingli, Bullinger, etc.). Not to forget of course Augustine! Who do you claim, just yourself, again? Oh yes, I have my many so-called modern Christian theolog’s too! Perhaps John Frame is one of my favorites, and the Reformed historian Richard Muller also. If we have not biblical and theological mentors? We are surely to be “pitied”! (Even a few of my old students are mentor like for me!)

      • Irishanglican,

        I never even suggested that I knew everything about anything – that would be a foolish suggestion indeed.

        There is rank arrogance, however, which says that just because someone went to a seminary they therefore can understand scripture better than one who has not. How many apostles went to seminary? Yes, they had a good teacher, but tell me how many years it was before any Christian attended a seminary, and how in the world did the Church get along without it?

        Yes, I am self-educated because I didn’t have the wherewithal to fund college, etc. But I am a reader and have spent the past 40+ years studying the Christian faith, having studied not only the Bible but thousands of books by scholars from just about every denominational and even non-denominational belief system. I have studied Rome from their own books, as I have all the other denominations. My personal library exceeds 1000 volumes on theological and apologetic matters.

        Augustine was one of the early false teachers to take the church on its downward spiral to the point where the majority of Christians today, in some denomination or another, follow his teachings – with the Calvinists and Lutherans being the staunchest supports of his belief system, right behind Romanists. And that’s why I pity anyone who holds to Augustine’s teachings. Gee, what did the church do before Augustine? It was he he brought in the idea that God predestines individually with no choice of the individual to accept or deny Christ. Scripture doesn’t say that, and the early ante-Nicene Fathers didn’t believe that way either.

        The problem with that belief system is that you cannot know if you are one of the elect – it is impossible to know if you are saved. Yet the Bible says we can KNOW we are saved. Which is why I pity all followers of Augustine – they have no assurance of salvation.

        The historical and theological reality is that ROME twisted the church to a new system, distorting and adding to the original faith. I believe in the “Church Catholic,” i.e. the universal Christian Church, but not the Roman Catholic Church. While individual members may be Christians in spite of the RCC doctrine, the RCC blasphemes God.

      • Glenn: I don’t think you have been reading the blogs here? I have already stated that I am an Augustinian on soteriology (salvation), and there certainly Reformed. That means I certainly believe one can know the assurance of his salvation, if he is following Christ in the gift of perseverance! And I have too noted that I am Historic Pre-Mill (post-trib). And that I am close to the teaching of the pre-mill of Irenaeus. So again mate your ignorance is again showing! And to call Augustine a “false teacher” is just plain ignorance once again, wow, amazing! No human teacher or theolog is infallible, but Augustine is a certain Western Church Father, most certainly! Here your “fundamentalism” is showing, and very badly!

        Btw, I have much more than a 1,000 books, I have that many since I have been in America perhaps? ;) I might have somewhere near 10,000 maybe? But of course that means nothing before God! To read and understand, yet always in faith is itself the desire God wants for His elect people! Again, lets not try to go for ‘tit for tat’! If I have unsettled you because you have not a theological education, and I have, please forgive me. But it does get old sometimes with people who really wish they did, and so like to press us that do. Though again that is nothing before God, but God in His providence has surely taken me down this road (years past now). But, like you I still read, thankfully, and have this desire. Btw, while were at this, I always try tp press my theological mind thru the pastoral gift of God! And HE has called me to shepherd and pastor, of this I am very thankful! It has been well over 35 years now! (Well over 40 in Christ!) To God be the glory!

      • Irishang,
        I pointed out how many books in my personal library because it is unusual for a layman to have such a library (especially an “uneducated” person) – I would expect more from a clergy person who has trained at seminary, let alone universities. And to hopefully convince you that I am indeed well-read in the subject.

        And yes I read the blogs and know your stance with Augustine, etc. But my point is that you have to be intellectually schizophrenic to think you are saved (I’ve had priests say that is presumptive) under Augustine’s theology (copied by Calvin) who says GOD decided before the beginning of time who would and would not be saved – by name. That we don’t make a decision for put our faith in Christ – it has been done for us. AS the Calvinist TULIP goes, God made his choice and there is nothing you can do about it. You can do all the thinking in the world that you are saved, but hey, if you weren’t one of the elect God was just letting you think that way. Nothing but preprogrammed robots.

        But this is getting way off topic so I want to let it drop here.

      • Glenn: Yeah, we don’t want to go down that road, though you are simply making a caricature of Reformed doctrine and theology, sadly (not good or correct) and I was speaking of the “Reformed Augustine”, rather than the “Catholic” one, there is a big difference, I was, and have been in both places and camps. So I certainly do know! Something only one like myself, would know, i.e. from again both places! (Sorry but you have just not been up that path!)

  7. Here is an alternative Catholic perspective:

    http://www.catholicplanet.com/TSM/critical-review.htm

    FWIW, this is solely put out by two specific conferences in the UK, NOT the Vatican. The Catholic Church DID NOT PUT THIS OUT. Bishops did, and woe to them if this work cause any to fall away from the faith for their flowery ways of speech.

    This is nothing more than the work of modernists who need to be extirpated post-haste, or at least have an infallible foot go proverbially up their butts.

  8. Dear jonbhorton,

    Even though this document was put out by bishops in England (and by the way I didnt write this post just posted the article I found), the RCC (Vatican) as a whole does except Evolution and says the faithful may believe in it. This is just a natural progression of that. Oh sure, you may say at some point in Evolution, God put a soul. But the scriptures do not say that. We can believe the Word of God, or twist it to fit into man’s theory of evolution. Which will you believe?
    When the Word is compromised and not believed, a man made religion results.

    • Evolution, as is, is flawed, scientifically shaky, and religiously untenable as it is presented sans-God in a rather militaristic fashion, but, I can easily believe in Intelligent Design which makes use of concepts found in the theory of evolution. That being said, I personally don’t care about the actual process God used to a level which is going to make me lash out or argue things which are scientifically impossible to prove either way.

      Ironically, it was a college biology course which spurred me back into my faith, and my faith which eventually led me out of Protestantism, and its stupidity, into the Catholic Church. However, I must conclude from the Arian heresy that the Church remains, though heretical Bishops risk Hell until time ends.

      I find no issue in returning to Pre-Vatican II doctrine. If any VII/Post VII doctrine is incompatible with prior explanations, it gets ignored as part of my faith and addressed with my priest, blogged about, and that’s that.

      Additionally, I find no issue with understanding certain things to be allegory and certain things to be literal. For example, I don’t expect an actual beast with multiple heads to rise out of the sea. I also don’t perceive Calvary to be allegorical.

      What these Bishops have done is typical of modernists. They have written a piece of literature that, to the modern and pseudo-educated, says one thing totally opposite of traditional dogma, and yet the language is *just* correct enough for them to argue that they haven’t gone against prior doctrine.

      One only need look at CCC#841, which addresses mohammedanism, and compare it with both old and newer documents which are more obscure to get a handle on what I mean.

      I’m not a sede-vacantist, but I am a “some Bishops need to think, retire, or go meet St Peter”-ist.

      • Dear Jonbhorton,

        You said:
        Additionally, I find no issue with understanding certain things to be allegory and certain things to be literal. For example, I don’t expect an actual beast with multiple heads to rise out of the sea. I also don’t perceive Calvary to be allegorical.

        My comment:
        I don’t know anyone who thinks the beast with multiple heads is a real beast. But you do believe you are supposed to eat Jesus’ flesh and take that as literal, worshiping the bread.

        So, I take it you are more Pre-Vatican II, where all Protestants are heretics not “separated brethren”. You see the Vatican can’t go back to that agenda , otherwise the gig is up. In her quest for world dominion again, she has to change her strategy. Vatican II didn’t stop with Protestants, but included other Pagan religions, stating Muslims share in the plan of salvation and that Buddhists CAN ACHEIVE divine ILLUMINATION by meditating and praying to their false gods. Please research this in the CCC.

        I was an educated through college, and a staunch Roman Catholic, having sit in Scott Hahn’s class.

        The true Gospel was kept from me as I worked to gain salvation, by keeping holy days and being a good rule keeper.

        Freedom in Christ, with Jesus as my Savior and Lord, I would not trade for anything on earth.

        I pray, you can find the same, Jon.

      • My comments are insulated by “*”.

        I don’t know anyone who thinks the beast with multiple heads is a real beast. But you do believe you are supposed to eat Jesus’ flesh and take that as literal, worshiping the bread.

        *Are you asking me if I believe in transubstantiation? If so, yes, if the necessary elements are in place for a valid consecration. Otherwise, it’s bread and might as well be chocolate chip pizza.*

        So, I take it you are more Pre-Vatican II, where all Protestants are heretics not “separated brethren”.

        *I understand the language of the VII explanations on this, and if one is ignorant of the truth, how can they be held to account for it? Romans 2 agrees with this. However, if a Protestant learns the true faith and rejects it in lieu of retaining the leech of Luther’s ghost, or if a Catholic goes over to Protestantism having full knowledge and prior communion with the Church, then yes, I believe them to be a heretic- for they have embraced heresy. However, as a former Protestant, I was appalled at how much I had been blatantly and/or tacitly lied to regarding Catholicism. Something as simple as marriage, for example, is something I had no idea of the beauty and weight of in terms of the Catholic doctrine. This applies to any doctrine. How can one be held accountable for what they don’t know? St. Augustine actually addressed this: “”The apostle Paul said, ‘As for a man that is a heretic, after admonishing him once or twice, have nothing more to do with him’ [Titus 3:10]. But those who maintain their own opinion, however false and perverted, without obstinate ill will, especially those who have not originated the error of bold presumption, but have received it from parents who had been led astray and had lapsed . . . those who seek the truth with careful industry and are ready to be corrected when they have found it, are not to be rated among heretics” (Letters 43:1 [A.D. 412]) ” .*

        You see the Vatican can’t go back to that agenda , otherwise the gig is up. In her quest for world dominion again, she has to change her strategy.

        * The Church has been losing members and power since VII, and the biggest demographic going to the Traditional Latin Mass is in fact young people. I see more people closer to my age at the Latin Mass than I do the Ordinary Form [O.F.] (vernacular, facing the congregation, etc), to which I only go when no other option is available. The Church can in no way gain power or dominion, that which She has never had, nor the regaining of that which She had, in areas where She affects the appearance of change with a modern slant. This is painfully obvious, and I think Blessed Pope John Paul II saw this, and Pope Benedict XVI sees this, as evidenced by his dissemination of Summorum Pontificum (though the sedevacantists obviously aren’t happy, and SSPX is more in a state of schism at this point than anything). FWIW, the FSSP are doing a bang up job and, I feel, are the future of both us newbies who sought the CATHOLIC Church, not the sorta-kinda-Catholic Church, and the people who mourned the near extinction of the Latin Mass for 40+ years. That the Bishops and Cardinals don’t understand the Church needs to stay the same the more the world changes, doesn’t make the Church or Her history incorrect, it just makes those clergy idiotic heretics on cruise control to burn in Hell with the world they kowtow towards.*

        Vatican II didn’t stop with Protestants, but included other Pagan religions, stating Muslims share in the plan of salvation and that Buddhists CAN ACHEIVE divine ILLUMINATION by meditating and praying to their false gods. Please research this in the CCC.

        *See my other comment regarding Protestants in addition to this:

        RE: mohammedanism, the CCC has one small paragraph which, given the language, I feel should be ripped out entirely. However, when you follow the reference notes in the CCC to the appropriate Church documents, namely Lumen Gentium and Nostra Aetate, it becomes clear that the Church’s position is not changed so much as changing the wording to more accurately reflect the Scripture and the Patristic writings. That particular CCC (841) nearly gave me a heart attack when I read it; once I researched it, it merely gave me heartburn.

        The CCC actually mentions nothing about Buddhism or Hinduism. I think you might be referring to Nostra Aetate which states:

        2. From ancient times down to the present, there is found among various peoples a certain perception of that hidden power which hovers over the course of things and over the events of human history; at times some indeed have come to the recognition of a Supreme Being, or even of a Father. This perception and recognition penetrates their lives with a profound religious sense.

        Religions, however, that are bound up with an advanced culture have struggled to answer the same questions by means of more refined concepts and a more developed language. Thus in Hinduism, men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through an inexhaustible abundance of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek freedom from the anguish of our human condition either through ascetical practices or profound meditation or a flight to God with love and trust. Again, Buddhism, in its various forms, realizes the radical insufficiency of this changeable world; it teaches a way by which men, in a devout and confident spirit, may be able either to acquire the state of perfect liberation, or attain, by their own efforts or through higher help, supreme illumination. Likewise, other religions found everywhere try to counter the restlessness of the human heart, each in its own manner, by proposing “ways,” comprising teachings, rules of life, and sacred rites. The Catholic Church rejects nothing that is true and holy in these religions. She regards with sincere reverence those ways of conduct and of life, those precepts and teachings which, though differing in many aspects from the ones she holds and sets forth, nonetheless often reflect a ray of that Truth which enlightens all men. Indeed, she proclaims, and ever must proclaim Christ “the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), in whom men may find the fullness of religious life, in whom God has reconciled all things to Himself.(4) ”

        This isn’t saying anything other than there are truthful aspects to Buddhism and Hinduism, etc. In other words, they are reaffirming Romans 2 in different phrasing, albeit way too vague for my taste.*

        I was an educated through college, and a staunch Roman Catholic, having sit in Scott Hahn’s class.

        * And Arius was a Bishop, what’s your point? Proximity to correct teaching doesn’t mean you understood it, or applied it correctly, or guarded it, or sought to understand it as it was and remains.*

        The true Gospel was kept from me as I worked to gain salvation, by keeping holy days and being a good rule keeper.

        *How was the “true” Gospel kept from you? Were you given redacted copies of the Bible? I have to assume you are arguing sola scriptura/sola fide doctrine as the “true” Gospel based on that sentence. It further sounds like you deny the primacy of St. Peter and his successors who, by the way, was given the keys of heaven and power to bind and loose. When, ever, has the Catholic Church said you have to work to gain salvation? Please re-read James 2. Works come from faith, but faith without works is dead. My faith has been nothing but bolstered since becoming Catholic. It was as a Protestant that I was unsure about Salvation, my place in it, or really anything objectively true and doctrinally backed up. Are you implying the gates of Hell prevailed against the Church and all souls entrusted to it from A.D. 33 until Whenever-your-new-denomination-was-started-by-division…by-the-Holy-Spirit? Does a house divided against itself stand? No.*

      • Most people who take the bible literally neglect the context of the culture into which it was written. This was a middle eastern oriental culture which used aligories, medifors and stories to relate spiritual principles to a people who largely could not read or write.

        The Catholic church is just being faithful to what biblical historians are discovering about jewish and roman culture of the 1st cent. Literalists are the ones who will have problems as we learn more about those times. Did the writers of the new testament write the gospels or did someone, perhaps their disciples, use the name of an apostle to lend credibility to the writings, a practice quite common in the early days of the church? eg. was 2nd Peter written by Peter or by a 2nd cent writer who attached peter’s name to that writing.

        I grew up with a latin mass and treasure it for what it is. As a singer/ musician i used to tell others laughingly that I learned to sing in church, but in a language I didn’t understand. I love English masses for the ability to pass Christ’s message in a language they DO understand. If the Latin mass comforts you then so be it. I am not one who believes the church should go backward, but move forward in reaching out to others and accepting new scientific knowledge, something it has never done very easily.

        We live in a post-christian era with people who have never been churched. This is a high tech age where anyone can retrieve any information about the church that they wish. Many of them know more about the real history of the church than we do.

        They are seeking something spiritually deep that has meaning for them, and they are skeptical of religious institutions. How do we reach them when we insist on rejecting what science is teaching us. Didn’t God give us science so we could learn and grow and to reveal more about him?

        Quantum physics is searching for the God particle, the stuff, the spirit, that holds everything together. Do we remain with our heads in the sand holding onto what people 2,000 years ago used to explain things they did not have the knowledge to understand or do we accommodate new information to increase our knowledge of how God creates?

        Tradition does no good if those traditions keep people from understanding and accepting the message of Christ’s love. The move from married priests to celebacy about a thousand years ago for economic reasons, has led to the sexual abuses currently fracturing the church. Wouldn’t it make more sense to dump that man made tradition and once again allow married priests in the church. Would not this make sense for the future of the church?

        Lastly, Thank God for the Catholic mystics, like Francis, St. Teresa, St John of the Cross and Madam Guyon (who was thrown into prison for 9 years by the church) who saw deeper than the orthidoxy of scripture into the heart and restored the truth of our relationship and union with God, that the light of God exists in all of us, that we are all sons and daughters of God as many within the early church believed.

  9. Of course they deny Revelation, it points to them!

  10. Of course the bible is not true as it’s interpeted . The torah is a copy of the Epic of Gilgamesh. If anyone doubts this fact. Just research the Sumerian Tablets.
    And the new testament…really? Are we to believe swine roamed around a “jewish” land? When the LAW forbid such animals to be looked upon, touched or eaten. But yet a pack of swine happened to be in the area where Jesus supposedly cast demons into them.

    Oh. And about the so-called creation. One simple question will stop the nonsense portrayed in Genesis: Which was created first…the flower or the honeybee?
    Be very careful. We have fossilised evidence of leafy and flowered plants.
    If you can answer this simple question, you have the knowledge of the universe at your disposal.
    But if you would rather keep believing in the gods of the old testament that promoted child sacrifice, loved gold, captured virgins, talking donkeys, she bears killing 42 children and floating axes. Go right ahead and keep your heads in the sand. But don’t think for one minute that you hold some devine secret or demand respect.

    • Mark,
      
That has to be one of the most ignorant comments I have read in a very long time. Your whole string is what is known as a prejudicial conjecture, demonstrating you have done no research on the topic you are commenting about, rather you have taken atheist/skeptic blog talking points as if they are true and then regurgitated them here. And then you claim to believe the Bible?!?!?

      • Oh thats rich! Just flounder around in ignorance. Please answer the question of the honeybee.
        Just one simple bee turns entire religions into mush!
        And I do not believe in man’s version of evolution..ape-monkey-man theory.
        You and your cult like followers change the subject when faced with the facts.
        The Sumerian Tablets pre-date your Egyptian Mysteries by 3000 years. But you can find the same stories in Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian and Judean civilisations. Only the names are changed.

        I can destroy the so-called jewish religion by facts!
        Fact: Abram/Abraham is/was a Sumerian (Babylonian/Iraqi). He traveled to Egypt to study under the TEMPLE PRIEST. After being INITIATED in the MYSTERIES. The Priesthood hired him as an assassin/thief. Notice when he murdered fellow nomads and tribes he was ordered to retrieve the gold and silver for “god”. His murdering tribe could have the virgins and animals. Abraham was a murderer, lier, and adulterer. And practicer of incest.
        How’s that for “religion”?

      • Mark,

        Your “facts” are pure rubbish and have been dealt with hundreds of times over the decades. You spew atheist blog points without doing any research. You are guilty of prejudicial conjecture and unargued philosophical bias. Your ignorance is not worthy of further comment because you have demonstrated your unwillingness to learn truth. And this fits the biblical definition of a fool.

      • So you do deny the bible. In that Abram was a Sumerian born and raised in Ur (Iraq)? And your religion is the Mysteries spoken about in Egypt?
        I really feel for those who put belief before facts and dogma before logic.
        All one needs to do is READ the bible. Not what some moneychanger wishes you to know.
        There is coming a time that the guillible and weak minded will refuse to bend and prostrate themselves before priest, preachers, rabbis, imams and shamans. Just like the bankers. The clergy’s days are numbered. For both are hand in hand with tyranny. From the days of Babylon to the Vatican. The priest and banker class has subjected the populations with mandates of “god(s)”. Soon the deceptions will become crystal clear. And the oppressors will be turned under.

        Again. Which came first..the honeybee or flowers?

      • Mark,
        My “religion” is not a mystery religion. I am a Christian who bases his belief on what the Bible, and only the Bible, says – not what some man came up with years after the last book of Scripture was written, not what Romanists say, not what reformers say, etc. It it isn’t in Scripture, then it isn’t of God. Of course false religious teachings will practice eisegesis with the text and spiritualize, take it out of context, or what have you and CLAIM the Bible says such and such, but that is easy to defend against.

        In response to your question about bees and flowers, according to the Bible flowers would be first because they are vegetation and created on the 3rd day. Since the days are literal 24-hour days, there is no problem with the bees coming first or second.

      • Now we’re getting somewhere!
        The Egyptian connection to the Holy Roman Empire:
        By tracing the bloodlines of the Priesthood we can find direct relations between the two civilisations.
        We can start with Holy Roman Emperor Vlad Dracul (Dracula). His bloodlines can be traced to the Brotherhood of the Snake around 2730 BCE, Egypt.
        Today’s direct descendant of HRE Vlad Dracul is England’s Queen Elizabeth II. Through Queen Mary of Tick.
        Now between this Royal bloodline lies the heads of the Church and Banking systems.
        The Mysteries I speak of are not “bad”. Basically. There traditions, finance and hidden knowledge concerning Astrology.
        This “knowledge” was only privy to certain “chosen” individuals. And when you READ the bible it is very clear where the “leaders” obtained their knowledge…Egypt. It was the epicenter of all organised religions. And that is why the libraries in Alexander had to be destroyed by those who wished to confine mankind to a certain type(s) of religion.
        But as we find out almost daily. Every time a dig is conducted in Palestine/Judea. Scientist unearth Egyptian artifacts. Soon they will dig deep enough to find the true civilisation of Mesopatamia…..Sumerians!
        I know it’s hard to believe mankind has been duped into believing the writings of so-called “chosen” people. All one needs to do is follow the money and all will become clear.

        The “day” your speaking of is a Yom. This invented timeline was from sundown to sundown the next day. So by that standard, it’s impossible to believe the so-called creation story as translated.
        By your theory of the flower poses a slight problem……Photosynthesis. Flowers need sunlight to grow/bloom and they need bees or other insects to pollinate. So the Yom theory is dead on arrival.
        This also poses a huge problem for the so-called Trees of Knowledge, Life, Good and Evil. Good luck figuring that out.

      • You are regurgitating popular myths, most of which were promoted by Alexander Hislop in his poorly research book. Give it up.

      • Give it up?
        It’s a very sad state of affairs that when one is confronted with the FACTS. The sheep run to the barn.
        If your so-called belief in a unknown author of a book causes uncomfortable situtations. Maybe you should regroup and examine REAL historical evidence that relies on technology, and not imaginations and superstitions.
        But hey. If people still insist on believing in flying witches, levitating Popes, bloodstained linens, goblets of blood, bones of “saints”, human/child sacrifice, spells, moon worship, rock worship, sun worship,blood drinking/letting and all other forms of traditions. They would do well to keep it to themselves.
        People are awakening to the deceptions that the Royal/Priest bloodlines have imposed upon them. No longer will free men/women be subjected and demoralised by charletons.

      • As I have stated before, your claims have been responded to in many, many venues. Rather than getting off topic here and wasting our time, go do some real research into the subject.

    • *first, …this tread is way too long!

  11. Dear Mark,

    Were you there when the world came into being? Did you see the stars placed in the skies ?

    The Word of God is indeed true. And you can believe every word. Man thinks he is above God and makes science a god.

    Who is demanding respect, Mark? The story of the bible is all about love.

  12. Dear Robert,

    You are saying there was only Catholicism before the Reformation. This is simply not true. The Anabaptists were outside of Rome, the Jewish Messianic believers were outside of Rome.Orthodox believers outside of Rome, the descendants of Paul in India were outside of Rome. Of course, Constantine did all he could do erase the Jewish-ness out of Christianity.

    • Sue: No, I did not say that, but there was/is Eastern and Western Christianity, this is a fact! And most of the time we are talking about Western Christianity, at least here. Sadly, many Christians are just ignorant of Eastern Christianity! And the whole anti-Constantine history needs to be re-examined, I think I have mentioned Peter Leithart’s fine book: Definding Constantine, The Twilight of an Empire and the Dawn of Christendom. Christian people just need to “think”, God did not ask us to check our brains at the door of the Church. And in fact we are not just people of the Holy Bible, but also people of an historical and pilgrim Church. The Visible Church really does matter! I am NOT a “fundamenalist”! And yet, I am pro-Israel, and even Historic- Pre-Mill (Post-trib).

  13. Dear Robert,

    You were not pre-mill until you read the stories on this blog, exposing the Vatican. I don’t say that with pride, but that’s what you told me.

    Let’s talk Constantine, who worshiped the sun until his death and killed his family members…oh yeah…he was Christian. NOT.

    • Sue: I never said this “blog” turned me Pre-Mill? though I was raised Irish Roman Catholic, my greatgram was among those called ‘Plymouth Brethren’, so I have been aware of the Pre-Mill issues for well near 50 years or so! I have in fact changed my Eschatological views several times over the many years! I have been Post-Mill, A-Mill..and perhaps Pre-Mill since I lived and taught in Israel in the late 90’s. But this subject has ebbed & flowed for me. WE really just don’t know! We really must be “pliable” before the Lord here! There are good Christian theolog’s on all these classic positions!

      *I told you btw, I was thinking thru some of these “Catholic” and eschatological issues, and I am always one that is “changing” and refining my thinking here! That’s really what “theolog’s” do! ;)

  14. Who is the Visible church then Robert? Rome, and the Vatican address??.NO WAY.

    • The Visible Church is the WHOLE Church historical! I myself feel the best visible place of the church is the Reformational and Reformed, and here, at least historically is the Anglican Communion, which has aways been both “catholic” & “reformed”! (Via meda) That is the Creedal place of the Church & Communion…SEE & READ the Irish Articles 1615, and the Thirty-nine Articles. The Reformation and the Reformers, Luther, Calvin, Zwingi, etc., all taught that the Reformed Church was “Catholic”!

  15. Here’s your comment:

    Sue, just a note.. but your blog was helpful (among some other aspects of God’s providence) to help me return to a dispensational pretriulationalism). I was already Pre-Mill and dispensational somewhat, though then Post-trib. Note I lived and taught in Israel in the late 90′s, so I have been a Biblical Zionist for several years. But now, I have returned to the Pre-Trib belief and Rapture! :)

    Sue,

    This has been a long time coming, i.e. coming back to a full dispensational and now pre-trib position. However, I should say that though I am now moving back to the classic Pre-Mill and Pre-trib., I do believe that the “timing” of the Rapture should be an open question, at least to some degree.. But to asnswer your question, I too have come to see that the Church I was raised in.. the RCC is just not a fully “Christian” Church, sure one can be saved and be a RC, but the “system” of the papacy is surely not Christ-like! (This can be seen back to Luther’s time, and even before. With the death of the Bohemian Reformer Jan Hus, etc.) And now I believe that perhaps the last Pope just could be the False Prophet! Of course I must be careful here, but there are so many signs in abundance! How can anyone really trust the papacy? It has had some Christian popes for sure, but again the system of the Roman Papacy has just been too evil over the many centuries. And when we look at the many moral aspects today, especially with their treatment of many of their vile men in the priesthood, there can really be only one conclusion. It’s just not Christian or Christ-like! And this is not easy for me to say, as I was again raised Irish RC in Dublin, Ireland. And I even believe my boyhood Irish priest was a Christian man, at heart. But the “System” is just really rotten!

    • Yes, I have again “changed” that position to the PD, or “Progressive Dispensational” (Note, Bock and Blaising book: Progessive Dispensationalism). Always “tweeking” my theology, especially on this subject! I have always held the “right” to change! :) Btw, some change all the time, on everything! I only “change” when God tells me too! (I am kidding of course)

      Yes, I see the “Papacy” as a system of man. No changes there! Though I am not anti-Catholic!

  16. I know, I know. You will be when I’m done with you. ;) Just kidding!

  17. Likewise Robert. :)

  18. Dear Jon,

    Wow. We have opposite stories. I had no assurance of salvation as a Catholic, and really, neither do you unless you can hire a priest to be with you 24/7 to forgive your sins. (that being mortal) Otherwise, it’s Purgatory and the purging fires where YOU pay for your sins.

    Jesus paid it all Jon. All of it. When the blood was put over the door during passover, God passed over those homes. I stand under the door of His blood, Jon. And it is enough to save me. I can’t work it off in purgatory and pay for my own sins. His blood is enough to purify me.
    According to your words, I am a heretic, and maybe you would have me burnt at the stake if the Inquisition was today.

    • Mortal Sins require full knowledge, consent, and grave matter. Were you ever catechized properly? It doesn’t sound like it. As for purgatory, you obviously don’t understand that purgatory is not a process of payment for the consequence of sin (eternal damnation- which we most definitely cannot pay off), but purification. Where on earth did you get the idea it’s to pay for your sins in the same manner which Jesus paid for the eternal consequence? No one is paying for their sins in Purgatory in that sense; souls in purgatory are being purified. Are you saying that you do not sin, even after having accepted the salvation provided by God through Jesus Christ?

      In closing that point, I suggest a thorough and heartfelt reading of Romans 11, particularly 19-23 (though this is by no means the only verse insinuating it) :

      (Douay-Rheims) [notes by me in brackets]
      “19 Thou wilt say then: The branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in. 20 Well: because of unbelief [ belief is faith, and faith produces works, including penance] they were broken off. But thou standest [ verb- a work] by faith: be not highminded [ don't presume salvation just because you at one point proclaim Christ], but fear [what's to fear if we cannot be cut off?]. 21 For if God hath not spared the natural branches, fear lest perhaps he also spare not thee [ wait, so, Christians can be cut off too? Not very Protestant in that regard, eh?]. 22 See then the goodness and the severity of God: towards them indeed that are fallen, the severity; but towards thee, the goodness of God, if thou abide in goodness [ literally moral goodness ], otherwise thou also shalt be cut off [ yeah, sorry, you can lose salvation through consent to sin with full knowledge of its grave matter ]. 23 And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again. [ But what do you know!? You can return to fidelity and be good to go again; I believe that's called penance, for a penitent heart realizes its sin, and seeks to be reconciled to God]

      Yes, Jesus Christ paid for all our sins’ *eternal* consequence… but there is still temporal consequence and purification, though that doesn’t mean we lose salvation because we are in purgatory. In fact, the individual judgement at death places us in purgatory in a status of purification, should that be our judgement, but if we are in purgatory…. Salvation is assured! There are only two final destinations for the soul according to Catholic Doctrine: Heaven or Hell. After the Final Judgement, there is no purgatory, only Heaven or Hell.

      You either never properly learned the doctrine, or you are purposefully twisting it.

      As for the Inquisition, I suggest watching this link when you get time: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18EderfKDOM

      As to whether or not you are a heretic, if you had full knowledge of Catholic doctrine and rejected it in lieu of your own, yes, you would be a heretic. However, it is painfully obvious you don’t have the catechetical training to remotely be aware as to how heretical your beliefs are and thus I would find it very hard to proceed with charges against you given my own experience with finally learning real Catholic doctrine. And furthermore, the Inquisition was set up to *inquire*, not execute. They never had the authority, though some engaged in the practice *with* civil authorities. As to “if” the Inquisition was still around, it is still around. It operates under the name of “Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith”, having originally been known as “Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Roman and Universal Inquisition”. They still investigate, but civil law no longer defines heresy as punishable by death. If you are thinking not of the Roman Inquisition, but instead the Spanish Inquisition, that was not set up, or run, by the Vatican, but by the Spanish monarchy.

      As to burning at the stake, this might provide insight into why that method was chosen:

      “Your Majesty must provide, before all else, that the expenses of the Holy Office do not come from the properties of the condemned, because if that is the case, if they do not burn they do not eat.”

      If they do not burn, they do not eat. Now, what on earth might that mean? Well, In the example of St. Polycarp, when the pagan Romans attempted to burn him at the stake, he didn’t burn according to witnesses and the Romans ended up having to stab him to death. He was protected by God and vindicated as holy. This concept is even Scriptural, particularly in the case of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. From what I can tell, the use of burning at the stake was more like one last effort for God to prove the Church wrong, versus painfully kill someone. A quick lopping off of the head seemed to be frowned upon, given the history of Christians being decapitated in their martyrdom. But Judeo-Christian history provides both scriptural and extra-Biblical accounts of people surviving burning unscathed.

      Do I want to see the practice revived? No.

      Excommunication was always the Church’s punishment, what the civil authority did, well….

      • jonbhorton:
        Romanists are the real heretics. Purgatory is a fabrication of Rome as a way of collecting money. I did an article about purgatory and the related heresy of indulgences at:
        http://watchmansbagpipes.blogspot.com/2010/06/unbiblical-catholic-sin-purgatory-and.html

        Meanwhile, here are some questions for you about purgatory:

        1. Hebrews 9:27 says that after death we face judgment, not purging.

        2. Hebrews 1:3 and 2 Pet. 1:9 say Christ already “purged” our sins (KJV – others say “provided purification” and the Catholic Bible says “cleansed.”) So if Christ already “purged” (or cleansed) our sins, what is purgatory for?

        3. 1 John 2:2 says Christ is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, as does Romans 3:23-25. If our sins have been atoned for, what is the purpose of purgatory?

        4. If purgatory is necessary, does that not say that Christ was ineffective in his atonement in that it didn’t pay for all sin? (This is also a good question to ask about the Mass – if Christ already paid for our sins by the one sacrifice, then why is the sacrifice of the Mass necessary? – Hebrews 10:18 – and actually read the whole chapter up to that point!)

        5. How does one know if they have spent long enough in purgatory? When buying indulgences, how does one know when enough has been paid to release them from purgatory?

        6. Why is it that purgatory didn’t become part of the doctrine of the Church until 1438 if it was a true biblical position?

        7. Does the “gospel” sound like “good news” if you can attend thousands of Masses throughout your life and still not die fully purified from sin?

        8. Since Philippians 1:23 and 2 Cor. 5:8 say Christians go immediately to be with the Lord (as also the thief on the Cross), how does this reconcile with purgatory?

      • Glenn, apologies for not getting a reply sooner. I assume you put together that list, and as such, gave an effort. I’d like to repay the effort by my own. My study style is to look at everything on I can which relates from ALL sides and determine how that fits or clashes with basic Christian doctrine and the Bible. Today ended up being busier than I’d planned, saw the Rosary comment below, and decided to at least show how ridiculous the queen of heaven comparison was in contrast to the reality of Marian doctrine.

        I’ll work on the list and post as I find or I can post comprehensively. Either way, not running away, just making sure I don’t miss anything. FWIW, it would help me if I knew what denomination you are so I can also brush up on doctrinal views for that denomination. Also, are you pre, mid, or post trib?

        Thanks,
        Jon

      • Jon

        I agree with you that it is taking Scripture out of context to associate the Romanist idea of “Queen of Heaven” with the O.T. passage. However, as my article on Mary shows, she is also not the “Queen of Heaven” in any sense of the title, and the Mary described in Romanist doctrine is not the Mary of the Bible.

        I am post-trib in my rapture belief, because I see no biblical justification for a pre-trib position, which gives those left behind a second chance – something we didn’t see with Sodom or the FLOOD.

  19. Absolutely no surprise here. It’s called ‘Laodecia’ and is a part of the great falling away that happens just before and during the tribulation period.
    Obvoiusly these ‘catholic’ pagans don’t understand prophecy and truth; which just confirms what we’ve known for centuries. The Catholic Church and ‘Christedom’ is NOT the Lords Church.
    Should be a wild race to the finish line…be prepared.

    • No one is “prepared” for this, and what’s coming! “And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.” (Matt. 24:22)…Note verse 21! Which I should have quoted also!) At 62, I have lived long enough to see such great changes in the Free Word, from Ireland to England, to America, and yet I “ain’t” seen nothing yet! Perhaps the Lord will take me to Himself before all of this? But we are certainly near the end! “Amen, Come Lord Jesus!”

  20. Wow! sueliz1 sounds like you think you have all the right answers. It seems like you believe your( infallible ) like the pope,maybe you should start your own church, going straight to Jesus with no checks or balances.”Sorry”! I was just trying to get you to think about what your last reply was. I think people have forgotten who the real enemy is Satan! Liberalism,Modernism as well as other ism’s have infected the one true church of God and society ect…but unlike Luther and many others i will not leave my spouse and try to find happiness elsewhere i will continue to stand for the truth even to the point of death. Fighting those isms in my house or those outside my house until the end. Don’t forget where you got your new testament, handed down and preserved from generation to generation written by hand, very expensive to have until the invention of the printing press in 1450 where the Bible was the first book ever printed with the direction of the church in its quest to make it affordable enough to get it into the hands of more people.This was sixty nine years before Martin Luther. History has been blurred to such a great degree that i don’t think any of us really know the whole truth. But one thing I am sure of is that Christian division without leadership is not what God intended.”example”: Moses, Joshua,king Saul,king David, king Solomon, Peter the first pope to the current pope Benedict and all of these men have in some way have failed to be the God’s perfect leader, never the less they were still put in charge by God as it is God’s will. May the holy ghost guide us to the truth and in our weakness may we be prudent in our speech and search for the truth least we error and lead others astray.

  21. Dear Richard,

    Why were the Bereans praised by Paul? They didn’t believe him until they could confirm what he said in the scriptures:

    Acts 17:11-

    Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.

    Did Paul say to ask Peter, the “pope”? No. He commended them for checking with the highest authority, the scriptures. Peter was a leader in the church, but not an infallible pope.

    I do not think I have all the answers. If I may say, your view of history is skewed.

    The Vatican killed people who tried to get the scriptures in the hands of the common man, as it was a forbidden book for hundreds of years.

  22. Good article Glenn. Which I could post, but I have to then get a google account and password. :P

    • No you wouldn’t. You can just use the “anonymous” block – check that one. People who do that will often put their name or blog at the bottom of their comment if they want to be known but don’t have an account. I get a lot of “anonymous” comments, but often the anonymous check is used for “hate mail” :oD

  23. Dear Jon,

    I feel incredibly sorry for you.

  24. Glenn-

    I’ll answer your list later on tonight, I’ve spent too much time this afternoon on this already at the expense of some other more pressing tasks. My last comment which I tried to post either got eaten by the internet or not approved, though if that’s the case I have no idea why.

    A quick answer on the “introduction” of Purgatory:

    The Church does not necessarily specify certain doctrine into dogma until there is a challenge to it, or a need to define it specifically. For example, the Assumption of Our Lady, or Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception. I’ll have more specifics later this evening, or tomorrow, depending on my schedule this evening.

  25. The Bible is the last word of God. I left the Catholic church over 20 years ago and have no regrets. I do feel sorry for those that remained. I will pray for those that remain Catholic . The only way for salvation is through Jesus. Follow the Bible you can’t go wrong.Remember when all else fails read the instructions

    • The fact is we must always see that the Word of God is itself the centre of the Church, and the Church is itself, “the pillar and ground of the truth.” (1 Tim. 3:15) The Church in fact hands on the doctrine of Christ, as we can see in all The Pastoral Letters, so we cannot diminish the true Visible Church of God, which is both “catholic” (universal) and “reformed”.

  26. All I know for sure is when I say my Rosary, I will continue to recite, when saying the “Sorrowful Mysteries”- “And the Jewish people said, “Let His blood be upon us, and upon our children.” I don’t give a HOOT who likes it!!!

    • Dear Nancy,

      Shalom.

      Read the book of Jeremiah to discover who the ‘Queen of Heaven’ is.

      http://www.understandthetimes.org/commentary/c13.shtml

      After you understand, you will stop reciting the rosary.
      Jeremiah 44:15-28

      15 Then all the men who knew that their wives were burning incense to other gods, along with all the women who were present—a large assembly—and all the people living in Lower and Upper Egypt, said to Jeremiah, 16 “We will not listen to the message you have spoken to us in the name of the LORD! 17 We will certainly do everything we said we would: We will burn incense to the Queen of Heaven and will pour out drink offerings to her just as we and our ancestors, our kings and our officials did in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. At that time we had plenty of food and were well off and suffered no harm. 18 But ever since we stopped burning incense to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have had nothing and have been perishing by sword and famine.”

      19 The women added, “When we burned incense to the Queen of Heaven and poured out drink offerings to her, did not our husbands know that we were making cakes impressed with her image and pouring out drink offerings to her?”

      20 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, both men and women, who were answering him, 21 “Did not the LORD remember and call to mind the incense burned in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem by you and your ancestors, your kings and your officials and the people of the land? 22 When the LORD could no longer endure your wicked actions and the detestable things you did, your land became a curse and a desolate waste without inhabitants, as it is today. 23 Because you have burned incense and have sinned against the LORD and have not obeyed him or followed his law or his decrees or his stipulations, this disaster has come upon you, as you now see.”

      24 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, including the women, “Hear the word of the LORD, all you people of Judah in Egypt. 25 This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: You and your wives have done what you said you would do when you promised, ‘We will certainly carry out the vows we made to burn incense and pour out drink offerings to the Queen of Heaven.’

      “Go ahead then, do what you promised! Keep your vows! 26 But hear the word of the LORD, all you Jews living in Egypt: ‘I swear by my great name,’ says the LORD, ‘that no one from Judah living anywhere in Egypt will ever again invoke my name or swear, “As surely as the Sovereign LORD lives.” 27 For I am watching over them for harm, not for good; the Jews in Egypt will perish by sword and famine until they are all destroyed. 28 Those who escape the sword and return to the land of Judah from Egypt will be very few. Then the whole remnant of Judah who came to live in Egypt will know whose word will stand—mine or theirs.

      • Again, an out of context reading both from actual knowledge of what the title “queen of heaven” here referred to, and how it may or may not apply to Marian doctrine. Titles in and of themselves do not denote universal application and singular possession for eternity, unless the context is there and explicit. What the Israelites were doing here was sacrificing to and worshiping Ashtoreth, which is star/planet worship. The planet Venus specifically was associated with Ashtoreth. The Greek name is Astarte. “She” was known as the goddess of fertility, sexuality, and war. The title conferred to the non-existent personality of Astarte, “queen of heaven”, is by the fallen Israelites and has no real bearing on anything in Roman Catholicism regarding Our Lady because it is plainly understood with a little leg work what they’re referring to. None of the concepts match Mary in the least.

        Furthermore, your slipping in of the capital letters is sneaky, but, never in Christian or Jewish doctrine and scripture will you find such a title capitalized outside of relating to legitimate entities. The text, in fact, does not say “Queen of Heaven” until the NIV inserted the capital letters in 1984, and as per this source (http://bible.cc/jeremiah/44-19.htm): NO translation ever had it capitalized except the NIV and the NLT, both of which have been rejected even by traditional Protestants as no dang good. Even the anti-Catholic’s KJV doesn’t capitalize it. Don’t you think they’d want to if it led to showing the RCC was evil via this argument about Mary? Again, an out of context reading both from actual knowledge of what the title “queen of heaven” here referred to, and how it may or may not apply to Marian doctrine. What the Israelites were doing here was sacrificing to and worshiping Ashtoreth, which is star worship. The planet Venus specifically. The Greek name is Astarte. “She” was known as the goddess of fertility, sexuality, and war. The title conferred to the non-existent Astarte, “queen of heaven”, is by the fallen Israelites and has no real bearing on anything because it is plainly understood with a little leg work what they’re referring to. Furthermore, your slipping in of the capital letters is sneaky, but, never in Christian or Jewish doctrine and scripture will you find such a title capitalized outside of relating to legitimate entities. Astarte’s associated symbols were: the lion, sphinx, dove, and a star with a circle representing the planet Venus. These were from the tribe of Judah. What if they’d said the lion of Judah? Obviously, given Christian doctrine, that title would be rightfully claimed by Jesus. But it would still have an association, however false, with Astarte. What about the dove? Are you ready to totally deracinate that symbol from Christianity because some earlier false goddess had it associated with her?

        Anytime a false god or goddess was adopted by a culture, the characteristics remained rather similar. In fact, I’ve never seen a case where an adopted or shared “god” had characteristics which were exactly opposite.

        Mary, however, shares none of the characteristics associated with Astarte in terms of what she represents. Is Mary regarded as fertile? No. She only had one child, and even that was a miracle. Is Mary regarded as sexual? No. She “has known no man”. In fact, Mary is regarded as pure and undefiled, perpetually virgin in spirit and body. Is Mary a goddess of war? Hardly, except perhaps in a really stretched spiritual sense, and even that is stretching a stretch and discounting what is given by God. Does she engage in spiritual warfare? Yes, but at the direction of God via her being “Theotokos”, Mother of God. You do believe Mary was Jesus’ mother, right? and you do believe He is God, right? And being God, and King, it stands to reason that in the royal court sense, Mary is indeed “Queen of Heaven”. Don’t let me bother you with context or anything, it might burst your imaginary bubble.

        The title “Queen of Heaven” means literally Queen of Heaven where we all one day hope to go. It does not mean one of the various other Hebrew words which is often translated as heaven, but understood not to mean HEAVEN so much as anything not ground. Just like the Inuit have multiple words for snow, and the Polynesians have multiple words for waves, the Hebrew language has multiple words for heaven which may or may not mean HEAVEN. The actual Hebrew word is not indicating this to mean HEAVEN but the heavens. The actual Hebrew word in Jeremiah passage is Shamayim which means space, or the abode of the stars. In other words, they were devoting sacrifice and worship to God’s lifeless creation instead of to God. That’s textbook idolatry and just as other gods in the region represented other celestial bodies, this one was no different. Marian devotion is ultimately devotion to Christ Jesus through the perfect example of His mother.

        Mary, Queen of Heaven, the Rosary, etc CONSTANTLY point us BACK to the Gospel story so we can keep looking FORWARD to Salvation. Take the “Hail Mary” for example:

        Hail Mary, full of grace.
        The Lord is with thee.
        Blessed art thou amongst women,
        and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
        Holy Mary, Mother of God,
        pray for us sinners,
        now and at the hour of our death.
        Amen.
        ——

        Since you people are so fond of taking scripture out of context via mere verses (I’m actually surprised you quoted more than a few verses, though it still didn’t help your claim when examined critically from a historical-linguistic perspective), I’ll quote 5 verses in IN context and beat you at your own game:

        Mt. 12:25-30 – “25And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: 26And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? 27And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. 28But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. 29Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house.

        30He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. ”

        Mary, Our Lady, the Queen of Heaven, is not against Christ but constantly FOR Christ. Ergo, she ain’t Ashtoreth/Venus/ or anything else which is worshiped falsely. In fact, the term worship for Mary is in the sense of veneration (dulia), not worship (adoratio/latria of God. Of course, if Protestants weren’t so dang anti-Latin and so enamored with their various, and inadequate, understandings of their own vernacular, this would be a real non-issue as the passage from Jeremiah doesn’t stand the test of the claim. But then, I digress into context and actual understanding of the two concepts as presented and incorrectly compared versus contrasted.

        FWIW, I read the above link regarding denouncing Marian doctrine and found it rife with inconsistency. The author assumes much being implied (not specified) in Scripture, in favor of his point, and then counters Catholic dogma on the fact that things are not specified. Which is it, guy?

        One example: Firstborn. I’m am my mother’s only son. I am also her firstborn. Firstborn merely implies just that, not the second or third, but establishes FIRST BORN. It can mean only or first of many. If Mary had other children which were her blood, they would have taken over as her protector after Calvary, not St. John the Evangelist/Apostle. That Joseph “knew her not until” doesn’t mean that he knew her after, it’s reestablishing the fact that Jesus’ birth was indeed miraculous and of the Holy Spirit. If you want to read it literally and imply relations, it would imply he immediately had sex with her right after she gave birth- unlikely given she was still needing to be purified according to Jewish Law regarding childbirth. On the off chance you are going to jump on Mary’s perpetual virginity by saying she should not have needed purification, everything Jesus did in accordance with the Law goes out the window too, mmmkay?

        If this verse implies he did know her AFTER, it would state: “He knew her not until AFTER she brought forth her firstborn.” for a literal reading. This is not the case and speculation is being thrown where it has no place.

        Here are some examples I found in a post online:
        “Even to old age I am He” Isaiah 46:4

        Does this imply that He will cease to be God when they have grown old? Of course not. (my addition: does it imply that God ages? No.)

        “Lo, I am with you always to the close of the age.” Matthew 28:20
        Does this mean God is going to abandon us and leave us behind at the end of time?
        ————

        I already knew all these arguments against the RCC when I was a Protestant. These very arguments are the ones I fought with and could find no actual fault in, in context. When taking scripture out of context, it’s easy to see these things which don’t exist. The fact of the matter is the Catholic Church preserved the Bible as given, and has never erred in maintaining it. The only changes in the Bible are modern ones which seek to rip passages out that have a Christological impact in the OT Messianic sense, or seek to question the validity of Jesus as the Messiah in the NT. The NIV, NLT, MSG, etc are all better used as winter fire kindling. Martin Luther even believed in the perpetual virginity of Mary as did Ulrich Zwingli. Which is it Protestants? Even your founders disagree with you.

        If we are to read the Bible solely on personal interpretation via the Holy Spirit, how did we end up with 40k+ Protestant denominations and sub-sects? Is the Holy Spirit so daft and unaware of His own inspired and inerrant message that even He divides Himself? Does a house divided against itself stand? If the Catholic Church is satanic and evil, demonically inspired and run, I guess that lends credence to the claims of Jesus’ accusers too. Protestantism is weak because it is divided. Who is right? Have the gates of hell prevailed against the Church? Really? You people boggle my mind.

      • Dear Jon,

        The RCC has made Jewish Miriam into a sexless, sinless goddess. In Catholic law as well as Jewish law, a marriage is not a marriage unless it’s consummated. So, you imply that Mary and Joseph slept in the same bed as brother and sister? Give me a break. If Mary did not give her husband herself completely, she was sinning.

        Of course the RCC can make dogma outside of scripture, and it’s believed.

        I don’t care if Luther, Calvin and whoever believed it. It is a dogma based on tradition alone, not the scriptures. It is against Jewish law and it’ ridiculous.

        Btw, you need not tell me about Astarte.

      • I am an Anglican priest/presbyter, and I am certainly Reformational and Reformed, but Mary is the Theotokos, the Mother of the Incarnate Christ, she was certainly an elect vessel of grace for the Incarnation of Christ! And also she had but “one” Son, Jesus! Indeed Mary ever-virgin!

      • You were okay until you said Mary was “ever virgin” and that she had only one son. THAT is unbiblical nonsense.

        In A.D. 553, the Second Council of Constantinople declared Mary “ever virgin.” The idea for this had begun to form as early as the end of the second century, but by the fourth century there was a lot of debate about it. It appears the belief triumphed because of the rise of asceticism and monasticism, which revered celibacy over marriage as being more spiritual. Gnostic beliefs that the material world was evil led to the idea that sexual relations were part of evil pleasures and not good for spiritual growth. Therefore, the idea that Mary could ever have had sexual intercourse was seen as something that would have corrupted her, and that Jesus would never have been born from a woman who would afterwards be soiled with sexual relations.

        Ludwig Ott tells us the Catholic teaching that, “Mary gave birth in miraculous fashion without opening of the womb and injury to the hymen, and consequently also without pains.” (Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma. p.205). Somehow the idea that a baby passing out of the womb and breaking the woman’s hymen would bring corruption to her, even without her having sexual relations!

        James McCarthy cites Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Part III (The Gospel According to Rome, p.192) reasons why Mary had to be a perpetual virgin:

        a. Since Jesus was the Father’s only son, He should also be the mother’s only son.

        b. Sexual relations with Joseph would have “desecrated” Mary’s virginal womb, which would have been an insult to the Holy Spirit whose shrine was Mary’s womb.

        c. “It would have been below ‘the dignity and holiness’ of Mary to forfeit her miraculous virginity by carnal intercourse with Joseph.” It would also have shown that Mary was ungrateful and not content with being Jesus’ mother.

        d. “It would have been ‘extreme presumption’ for Joseph to have attempted ‘to violate’ Mary.”

        In response to this teaching, we have to first ask what the Bible says about sexual relations inside of marriage. Gen. 2:24 says the husband and wife are to become one flesh, which Jesus reiterated in the Gospels. Hebrews 13:4a says, “Marriage is honorable among all…” 1 Cor. 7 tells us that the wife’s body belongs to the husband and his body belongs to her, and that they are not to deprive each other of sexual relations. The Song of Solomon exalts the marital relationship. So we see that while Scripture condemns sexual relations outside of marriage as immoral, sexual relations within marriage are right and proper and intended to make the husband and wife “one flesh.”

        What does the Bible say about Mary’s virginity? Firstly, to be married to Joseph and never consummate the marriage would violate the “one flesh” desire of God’s for marriage, let alone violate the teaching that the wife’s body belongs to the husband and she is not to deprive him of relations. Matthew 1:25 says that Joseph did not have relations with Mary “till she had brought forth her firstborn Son.” The fact that it says “till” (NIV “until”) Mary had her first son implies that afterwards they had relations. Additionally, Matt. 1:18 says “before they came together,” also implying that Mary and Joseph later “came together.” Finally, Jesus is called Mary’s “firstborn” in Matt. 1:25 and Luke 2:7, implying more children followed. Numerous passages in the Gospels and some of Paul’s letters report on Jesus’ “brothers” and “brothers and sisters.” While Rome claims these passages refer to cousins, there is a Greek word for cousins which isn’t used, while the Greek for brothers and sisters are. Sometimes Catholic apologists claim these were half-siblings, children of Joseph from a previous marriage; this is bringing personal bias into the text because there is no hint in the Bible that Joseph was previously married.

        The plain reading of the Bible demonstrates that Mary was in every sense a normal wife and mother after the birth of Jesus.

      • Glenn: My views here on Mary are more like Aquinas somewhat, which are theological. But, I also tend to follow the EO or the Eastern Orthodox on Mary. Which btw saw Joseph as a much older man than Mary, and perhaps part of the same tribe of Israel. This is somewhat tradition certainly, but the East has theirs, as too the West. The East saw the so-called “Brothers” of Jesus as Josephs children from another marriage. But again, my views on Mary are again theological. Btw, here is a good verse…Ezek. 44: 2. The theological and spiritual sense is most obvious, only One may use this divine entrance! Such was the virgin womb of Mary, for the Incarnate Son!

      • Irishanglican,
        It matters not whether your views on Mary are from Acquinas, E.O. or anywhere else. It isn’t biblical. There is no biblical evidence that Joseph was older with previous children – that is a later tradition to “protect” the virginity of Mary and to explain away brothers and sisters. Your views are not “theological” because that word means the study of the word of God. That view of Mary came from the word of men many, many years later.
        To suggest Ezek. 44:2 can be applies spiritually to Mary is taking the passage well beyond any meaning of the author – including the Author behind him. THat is the problem with man’s religion; he makes up a dogma and then looks for Scripture to spiritualize in order to support his dogma. It’s called eisegesis. And you wonder why I put Romanism (and the dogma that developed with it) along side cults?

      • Wow this tread is getting hard to manage! ;) Glenn, I will let you argue with the Reformers here: Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, etc. Indeed the Reformers knew that Mary Ever-Virgin was central within the Christology of Christ. She was an elect-vessel of grace for the Incarnation!

        In Jewish usage, “brother” can indicate any number of relations, Abram called his nephew Lot “brother” (Gen. 14: 14); Boaz spoke of his cousin Elimelech as his “brother’ (Ru. 4:3); and Joab called his cousin Amasa “brother” (2 Kings 2:9). Christ Himself had no blood brothers, for Mary had but one Son: Jesus! And quite simply the so-called ‘brothers and sisters of Jesus’, are never called Mary’s children: “Is not the carpenter, THE Son of Mary, and the brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us? WE can see the probelms here, with other verses…Matt. 27:56 / Mk. 15:40 / Lk. 24:10! And btw I will let you play with Matt. 10:3, “James” is described as “the son of Alphaeus”; how, then, could Mary his mother be wife both of Alphaeus and of Cleophas? So we see that there are several “Mary’s” in the NT! Note John 19: 25 (Mary, “his mother” is mentioned first here! She is not mentioned in the other Synoptic Gospels, after the crucifixion!)

      • Robert,
        There is more than one Mary, but that doesn’t fit with your man-made doctrine.

        Let’s see, you resort to what the so-called “reformers” had to say about Mary rather than returning to Scripture. The reformers were all Romanists who carried much of the Romanist man-made doctrines with them.

        Mary did not remain a virgin – the Biblical text is clear. Making her a virtual god is what happened by starting with her perpetual virginity.

  27. [...] Catholic Church no longer swears by truth of the Bible « Suze Blog Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. [...]

  28. Dear Glenn,

    Thank you for witnessing to Dennis on my blog.

    Blessings,
    sue

  29. These of the “hierachcy” do not represent the Catholic Church. These few bishops obviously have their own agenda and do not speak forthe other billion Catholics who do believe in the Bible. With so many under the tent of Catholic,there are going to be differences in thought,but these bishops are speaking only for themselves. With over 30 thousand various sects of Protestantism,there are also obviously differences in their individual sect’s thoughts,too. The point is that Catholics due believe the Bible is true. I am one of them. Just because a few bishops go astray and say the Bible is not true,why is it that over a billion other Catholics who believe the Bible is true are all trhown under the bus with these “bishops”. The headline that “afew bishops don’t believe in the bible” just doesn’t grab headlines. When the headline alludes to all of Catholicism,that grabs attention. Just more Catholic bashing.

  30. one thing is clear that those who clam to be trying to open the minds of the close minded do not have an open mind themselves.

    • Indeed, the complete negative views on Roman Catholicism show a real misunderstanding of the whole of the history of the Reformation! Again, I speak of a Philip Melanchton, who did not see Rome as the full-blown Antichrist. And then of course the reform minded Catholics also, like Erasmus and Jacques Lefevre d’Etaples (the latter who Calvin went and met). In fact, Lefevre was a profound minded Catholic-Christian and theological scholar! Who himself suffered somewhat from Rome, and was somewhat fenced behind a monastery, for his reform minded teaching. We should note too, that the Counter-Reformation’s high point was the Council of Trent, which certainly did reform the most glaring clerical abuses, at the time in Rome and the Curia. Btw, this was also the time of the Catholic mystics like John of the Cross, and Teresa of Avila. So the Reformation itself, helped to press or begin the Catholic Counter-Reformation. Something of a “fire-wall” in Southern Europe and France, however the Counter-Reformation could not stop the Reformation in England, Scotland, Scandinavia, and the Netherlands. We always need to see the bigger picture historically here! Let us note and remember, there is only One Mystical Body of Christ! And for us Reformational & Reformed Christians this is NOT visibly just Roman Catholicism, but all “regenerate” Christians!

      • I fully understand the history of the Church from the time of its foundation. The negative views of the Romanist church have nothing to do with not understanding history, and everything to do with their false, aberrational and even heretical doctrines.

      • Glenn: WE just don’t agree here! YOU appear to have just everything black and white, as it concerns Roman Catholicism, sorry mate but this is just too easy for me, and not even real history! If some Roman Catholics are real regenerate Christians, and there have been and are many (based upon the mercy & grace of God), then we simply must define how that can be, even with the errors and history of Catholicism! As I have said over and over, the real Church is Visible! But it does have both “Wheat & Tares”. The fact that we had a Reformation, and not a complete reconstruction of the Church is in fact history! Now the so-called Radical Reformation, the Anabaptists has its own sad story. It is rather interesting to me that at least in Great Britain, and too some in America, Baptist Churches are returning to the Apostolic and Ecumenical Councils and Creeds. Note, Timothy George, etc.

      • I never said there were no true believers in the Romanist church. There are indeed true believers IN SPITE of the Romanist heresy. Testimony after testimony have been been written by those who left the church, that the majority of the world’s Romanists may be good Roman Catholics but are not Christians because they have no idea what the Gospel is.

        Again, I know the history of the church, and it does not affect my negative views of Romanism, nor do I think church history has a bearing on anyone with negative views of Romanism. Negative views are based only on – and solidly on – the false teachings of Romanism.

        Guess what – I also have a “negative view” of any other church with false teachings: Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Church of Christ, PCUSA, UCC, ELCA, et al. And history has nothing to do with it.

      • Glenn: It is simply not logical that a Church that is run by THE Antichrist, can sustain or even help Christian life! This has been my argument. Certainly the RCC has had times and moments of antichristian acts, but then so have many churches! This has been my argument too, that the true Visible Church is always a Pilgrim Church, with both real Christians, and those who just look “Christian”. Right now sadly, many don’t even “look” like Christians, in many Churches. This is not just a Roman Catholic problem, but a problem with the whole Church today! In fact my own Anglican Communion and Church is perhaps just as bad as any! At least both the CoE, and the American Episcopal Church.

        Btw, I just don’t see how you can place the Mormon’s, JW’s and others you have quoted beside the RCC? The RCC teaches the Doctrine of Christ, as God & Man – Deity/Divinity (Christology), the Virgin Birth, the Trinity of God, the Vicarious Death & the Resurrection of Christ! Wow! Antichrist? No way! I love Luther, but Luther’s right hand man, Melanchton, knew better theologically!

      • Irishanglican.

        YOU stated that the negativity towards Roman Catholicism had to do with not knowing Church history. My point is that my “negativity” (and everyone else’s I’m aware of) to the RCC has nothing to do with knowing church history. Rather it is about their heretical doctrines. And I pointed out that it wasn’t just the RCC that I have a “negativity” towards, rather it is towards ALL false teachings, whether it be in the Romanist (or shall I say, PAPIST?) church or in one of the cults. It has nothing to do with knowing or not knowing church history.

        The Romanist church, in my view, is a cultic religious system. Not a full-blown cult like the LDS or JWs, but certainly cultic by their adding the traditions they invented to the truth of the Bible: Indulgences, purgatory, papacy, magisterium, transubstantiation, mariology, etc.

      • Glenn: Indeed your understanding of Church history appears skewed to me, but hey I am a “Catholic” minded Christian! And your statements, especially on the Book of Revelation seems rather postmodern, or at least following so called modern or just today’s so-called scholars. Mine are really closer to the exegetical lines. You completely missed my “theological” and applicational points from Rev. 22: 18-19! (Your reading again!) But, I can see that you are not read in Revelation commentaries. And one simply cannot read theology proper without Church history!

        Btw, we are starting to go around in circles, at least on this subject. I have stated my position in the “Christian” sense of history and text. You have simply shared what you have read somewhere? Without reference I might add! So, lets not bore ourselves, or others! Opinions we have a plenty!

      • Irishanglican,
        You’re starting to get the Irish up in me. :oD

        Just what is it I’m missing in Church history? Aside from Scripture, I have studied several histories by many historians (do I really have to cite all the authors?) including Eusebius (Oh,and I like Paul Meir, too), I have studied the history of the Bible from many authors, I study systematic theology, and YES, I have read a boatload of commentaries and studies on Revelation. Your condescension to someone you don’t know is quite hilarious.

        What I don’t understand is how you consider the understanding of Rev.22:18-19 to be POSTMODERN?!?! I didn’t miss your application points at all, but it seems you missed mine. Rev. 22 can be used with all the other passages to establish the principle of not messing with the Word of God.

        To be fair, when I first became a Christian I was taught that Rev.22;18-19 applied to the whole of Scripture, and that was a reference to why the BOM was in error, etc. It was several years before one day I was reading the text and for once without the preconceived idea and -bingo – I read it for what it said, not what others said it said.

        But THIS passage is only in reference to the book of Revelation and nothing else. As previously noted, this was written long before the New Testament was collected as a book, and the subject of the text is “the prophecy of this book.” How can the context be about the whole Bible when “this book” wasn’t attached to any other “book” at the time, nor was it so for many, many years? And actually, the curse is against “the book of THIS PROPHECY” (or, depending upon version, “the prophecy of this book”), and since the plagues of “this book” are part of the curse, and the plagues are in Rev. we’re back to the context of Rev and not the entire Bible. (Yes, the idea is probably from Deut. 4:2; one of the many passages I suggest using in concord with this one).

        I realize there are many commentators who agree with you, but that doesn’t surprise me because it has been one of the views. BUT, in my favor, on my shelf the following commentators agree with me: Steve Gregg, George Eldon Ladd, David H. Stern, Kenneth L. Barker & John R. Kohlenberger III, Bratcher & Hatton, Norman Geisler & Ron Rhodes, Warren Wiersbe,

        As well as these other multi-author commentaries:
        The NIV Study Bible, NKJV Study Bible, Reformation Study Bible, The Bible Knowledge Commentary, The Apologetics Study Bible, New Bible Commentary, The Pulpit Commentary

        The “Believer’s Study Bible” even says, “Early Christian writers understood these verses as warnings to false teachers who would tamper with or alter the content of the Apocalypse.”

      • Glenn: Well at least you finally admit the connection with Deut. 4:2 ; 12:32! That was really what I was pressing for! ;) As to the my statement about the postmodern, this was about your idea about of when, where, who, etc., the books of Holy Scripture were written. That is guess work! And yeah, all of us theolog types like to guess!

        Btw, I have read many of the same books too, but I also read the critical stuff, one simply must in the full theological field. Like the NIGTC’s, the NICNT’s, and even some of the Anchor Commentary’s. Note in time past I had been approached about writing for the Anchor series, but that was years back now. Though I did teach in the academy in Israel in the late 90s. But, I am a shepherd and pastor, and I choose that path foremost. I also sacrificed for my time in the RMC’s (over ten years). And I don’t regret it a bit! The rewards were for my mates and me! I layed it all on the line many times, for God and country! Sounds corny, but true!

  31. I don’t understand. Are we recycling news items from 2005?

  32. The R.C.C. Foundation is faulty so it’s never been built on the truth anyways. >The Roman Catholic Church definitely took it the wrong way because they’ve been romancing the stone the whole time

    That’s what happens when you build on a faulty foundation as the R.C.C. has done…

    1Cr 3:11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.

  33. So the anti-christ’s false prophet has begun his campaign in earnest. I hate to tell that lying false prophet something but, protestant christians don’t hate the jews. It’s not the jews of today’s fault the ones of 2000 years ago crucified Christ, it had to be done and they played the part YHVH assigned to them. Mixing lies with some truth is what the demon formerly known as Lucifer does best.

  34. “•The gibe, “If the Pope is not Antichrist, he has bad luck to be so like him”, is really another argument in favour of the claims of the Pope; since Antichrist simulates Christ, and the Pope is an image of Christ, Antichrist must have some similarity to the Pope, if the latter be the true Vicar of Christ.”

    http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01559a.htm

    Which he isn’t…he only claims to be…and makes him an antichrist.

    • Diane

      Not the Lawless one but I’m sure the false prophet.
      This year will tell.
      Peace be with you

  35. @Irishanglican You want R.C.C. history i’ll give you plenty. Ever hear of the Spanish Inquisition? Yeah who do you think was getting burned at the stake or tortured on devices like “the rack” and the “wooden horse”? It wasn’t pagans or heretics, but it was protestant christians who refused to bow down to your “Queen of Heaven” Astarte. The blood of the martyrs cries out to heaven for vengeance and the day of wrath comes soon. Your Jesuits have murdered enough of Christ’s true believers. If i were you i’d get as far away from the R.C.C. and its idol worshipping, pagan goddess worshipping ways (BTW the Pope’s hat and raiment? Same junk the priests of Dagon wore, just all dolled up so you don’t see the similarity between the 2, oh and btw that bent cross Jesus hang son your Pope like sot flaunt so much is a symbol for Tammuz the son of Nimrod who was the first false Messiah.

  36. Read “The Age of Reason”, by Thomas Paine. This is not the first time someone has thought the Bible was a load of man-made dodoo.

  37. Christianity has never been an religion.
    The Bible was not written for a worldly mass.
    The Holy Spirit still thrives in the Fathers chosen ones.
    The Truth is still The Truth.

    Peace be with you

  38. Robert,

    First of all how do they ‘know’ Joseph was a ‘much older man’? He’s a carpenter, doing manual work.

    Secondly, it amazes me that the Orthodox and RCC sees her womb as a shrine and that because He came out of it, having a real marriage would desecrate it. Thirdly, if you believe, (somewhat) as the RCC believes, that receiving Eucharist is receiving Jesus in the flesh, then you should be a PERFECT VESSEL too.

    ALL HAVE SINNED the bible says. ALL. This retro-active sinlessness is pure fairy tale. Mary offered 2 turtle doves as a sin offering.

    • Sue: Thanks to put this at the bottom of the tread! ;) This is of course a “tradition” or piece of history that comes from the East. There are still no doubt true historical pieces from around the Apostolic time and Church. We can see this perhaps in the Letters of Ignatius of Antioch, Clement I, Barnabas, Polycarp, etc. We can also note the historical wrings taken by Eusebius, and his history of the Church. These of course are not biblical canon, but no doubt some of this is historical, just as he gathers many of the NT Letters and scriptures together.

      I am not “pressing” my own position of Mary or “Miriam” – the Mother of our Lord on you, though clearly the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus declared Mary the Theotokos (the God-bearer), in the midst of the probelms of Nestorianism! Perhaps you should dosome historical study there? Many,even Baptist groups today are standing with the Ecumenical Councils! As I have noted, the well known Timothy George, see btw, his edited book: Evangelicals and Nicene Faith (Baker, 2011). And yes I have it..Nice read!

      Btw, the issue of Mary’s so-called “sinfulness” is a big subject, even Thomas Aquinas taught that Mary was born with sin, but of course the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception won out in 1858! As an Anglican I see that Mary was certainly without sin at the time of the “Greetings” of the Angel Gabriel! His visit “was [one] sent from God”! And she was the “O favored one, the Lord is with you”! Mary-Miriam, simply HAD to be without sin, to bare the Holy Son of God! (Luke 1: 31-35) Note, from Her “womb” came the pure Son of God, who as we know was the Lamb of God, Himself!

      • Robert,

        The title of “God Bearer” was given to Mary to as a proof of Jesus’ divinity, not as a title to exalt Mary.

        The Scripture says that “ALL” have sinned, including Mary. There is nothing in the Bible to even hint that she was sinless. That again is nothing but man-made dogma.

        Who says that Mary had to be without sin to bear Christ? NO ONE in the Bible and no one in the very early church. It was made up later.

        Again you charge that I need to study history; why do keep making that charge? Just because I disagree with your dogma? I HAVE studied the history of all this stuff.

        And it doesn’t matter when the dogma of Mary’s sinlessness began or who or how many people believe it. The truth is not determined in that manner.

        The BIble is our standard of truth.

      • Glenn: I see you have run away from the Scripture texts I have given (last post)!

        Now as concerns Mary being without sin during the Incarnation! This is both textual, and simple logic! A close read of both Luke 1:26-35, and then also from Mary’s Magnificat, 1: 46-49 (perhaps too without doubt Lk. 1:41-45)….”But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the VOICE OF YOUR GREETING SOUNDED IN MY EARS, THE BABE LEAPED IN MY WOMB FOR JOY!”

        Wow! And then verse 45, etc. It is simply under-belief, and just pride it appears, that keeps many on this tread from seeing the place of the Blessed Virgin Mary! Talk about pity! Mary is indeed the Theotokos! May we honor her as she has been given honor indeed by the Lord Himself!

      • Robert,

        I didn’t run away from anything. I’m still waiting for a text that supports the claim that Mary was sinless and that she remained a virgin.

        Now you make a presumptive charge that only pride keeps people from accepting the false and unbiblical mariology you promote!

      • “And Mary said, For my soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
        For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty HAS DONE GREAT THINGS FOR ME, and holy is his name.” (Lk. 1:46-49, etc.)

        Btw, I don’t see YOU or many on this blog, calling Mary “Blessed”!

      • Robert,

        I don’t know of ANY Christian who does NOT think Mary was blessed. Of course she was blessed to chosen to bear the Messiah. It is a non sequitur to say that means she was without sin.

        She called God her Savior – if she didn’t have sin, why did she need a savior?

        That passage you cite has no supporting evidence to claim she was sinless or a perpetual virgin

      • In Matt. 1: 18, “before they came together”, in marital and domestic union. See, the NET Bible here! Which they never did have, in the sense of Matt. 1:25. I quote the NET Bible note for this verse:
        Or, “did not have sexual relations”; Grk “was not knowing her.” The verb “know” (in both Hebrew and Greek) is a frequent biblical euphemism for sexual relations. However, a translation like ” did not have sexual relations with her” is too graphic in light of the popularity and wide use of Mattew’s infancy narrative. Thus the somewhat more subdued but still clear “did not have marital relations” was selected.

        And we can note this is not a Catholic, Orthodox, or an Anglican Study or Textual Bible! For the most part there are many DTS people here.

      • Robert,

        Matt. 1:25 says they didn’t have relations UNTIL Jesus was born. “UNTIL” implies they did afterwards. Otherwise the text would have stated that they never came together as husband and wife.

        Don’t you think if Mary remained a virgin and was sinless, that something that significant would have at least passing mention in the Bible?

      • Wow Glenn, You are not reading what I am writing, I too never said Mary had no sin, but that her sin was “cleansed” at the time of the Incarnation, and the visit by Gabriel, who in reality came, or “who stands” – the one who is standing before God!

      • Robert,

        So before Christ was born and crucified and raised from the dead, Mary was cleansed from her sin? How do you manage to find that in the text? And does that mean she never again sinned? (1 Jhn 1:8)

      • Okay, there ya are. No, Mary no doubt had no more so-called ‘original sin’, and no actual or habitual sin. But she was still a human being. The Work of the Christ is actually given in eternity, so God is not in some kind of need or even place of waiting. I do not believe in “propitiation”, as the “mercy-seat” of God (Rom. 3: 25). It is the “expiation” of the death of Christ, the Lamb of God. The value of the Atonement is in the One who died there…Jesus Christ!

      • Robert,

        Just so I understand you – You are saying Mary was cleansed of sin at the annunciation, and did not sin thereafter?

        I don’t believe in the dogma of “original” sin.

        What I believe the Bibles says is that everyone has inherited a sin nature – the inability to remain sinless. This is not something which washes away at Baptism. There is no “stain of original sin” which suddenly disappears when we become Christians.

        Of course the dogma of original sin (which tends to have various meanings, depending on who you talk to) is why Rome came up with baptizing babies, and the whole idea of baptismal regeneration – another unbiblical dogma.

        I’d like to see biblical support for claiming that Mary remained sinless.

      • First, Original Sin, is certainly a biblical and yet a Pauline reality, but it is “theological”, as Paul talks about Adam, and Christ as the Last Adam, in Rom. 5 and also 1 Cor. 15. The term is also seen in Covenant theology, as too Augustinian theology, and certainly Calvinism. Note Federalism, or Adam as the Federal head of the race. And yet even Roman Catholic theology uses it also. Here btw, the doctrine of Pauline Imputation is also very important here. Note this is not seen in the thelogy of the Orthodox, i.e. Imputation.

        Now concerning Mary, she was certainly an elect-vessel of grace for the Incarnation, and she really has a place like no other. But she is still a creature, but one that has been caught-up in the fulness of the Salvation History of God! (Rev. 12: 1-2,; 5-6) And Mary has a place as within this history, as we can see in John 19:25-26-27. This picture in John is not just some human aspect, but a vision of both the Church/John and Mary. Again, the Mystical Body of Christ is also seen here. But we should not press it into something beyond what is here, simply, the redemptive People of God. Both Mary and John are in that place that the whole Church will see and find itself!

        About Mary’s personal “anthropology”, I think we must see her as centred in the redemptive salvation history of God, the vessel of the Incarnation, and herself in heaven with all the Redeemed there. After the Annunciation she does not have the same sin nature and is without original sin, she is still very human, but by grace she will continue until death and glory. But no actual sin and no habitual sin! Again, there is simply no “person” like Mary, the Incarnational vessel of grace & glory… The “Theotokos”! This is my faith anyway. :)

      • “Original sin” is nothing more than that we are all born into a sinful world and we have a sinful nature, and because we have a sinful nature we will sin. Mary never lost that sin nature and would therefore have still been a sinner just as we all are.

        All John 19 demonstrates is that Mary was apparently widowed, especially since Joseph isn’t mentioned after Jesus was 12 (and not because Joseph died of old age as those believe who want Joseph to be previously married, etc). Therefore, John is saying that Jesus gave Mary into John’s care as a son to a mother. That does not translate, as Rome’s dogma claims, into Mary being the “Mother” of the Church. More non sequitur.
        In Revelation 12 cannot be dogmatically stated as referring to Mary, since many say it is referring to Israel or possibly even the Church in the end times. Nevertheless, Mary did not flee to the desert for 1200 days.

        Mary was certainly an important woman blessed of God, but she does not reign in heaven, nor is she someone through whom we go for mediation, etc. And there is still no scriptural backing for you to claim she was without sin or a sin nature. Scripture does not say she was mystically changed in any way whatsoever. You are holding too tightly to the dogma of Rome over what Scripture says.

      • Btw, let me ask anyone, to show Mary in actual sin? And also human doubt is not a sin, unless it is pressed into a grave place of unbelief.

      • Robert,

        AH, the old argument from silence. We actually are told very little of Mary’s life outside of what we know of her being a mother to Jesus. There are a lot of people mentioned in Scripture who have no specific sins listed against them. The assumption of the Scripture is that everyone has a sin nature and everyone will sin. IF Mary had her sin nature removed, I should think it would be loudly proclaimed in Scripture.

      • Glenn: I always find it interesting how you try to dumb-down the great mysteries of Holy Scripture, I find this somewhat a classic problem with Fundamentalism. And then you try to use philosophic terms, remember I have a doctorate in philosophy and used to teach it, both college and grad level. Note I have not tried to snow you in philosophic terms. Not the best arguments in theology btw. I can see that you have little appreciation for the depth of Pauline Imputation, for here this really helps us see the depth of Original Sin. Btw, are you Pelagian?

        And just the use of “Mary” even if it is apocalyptic, is very much a theological inference. This is one of my points!

        I am not holding to Roman doctrine to Mary at all, I guess you have not read much EO or Orthodox theology, I am really somewhat closer there on Mary, at least on some points. Though really Reformational and Reformed overall.

        Finally, I think we have spent ourselves in this debate. You are not a theolog mate, I hate to tell ya this. Theolog’s have much more open minds. I know, this was always a challenge for me in my younger years, not to change just based on argument, and this is where philosophy is not always helpful in theological dogma especially. Of course we cannot simply cast philosophy aside, but it is really in submission to the Revelation of Holy Scripture!

        Keep reading mate, both Scripture and theology!

        PAX

      • Robert,

        I NEVER dumb down the mysteries of the Bible – I just don’t read mysteries where the plain reading of the text has none. I don’t know what “philosophic terms” I am supposed to have used.

        I have EVERY appreciation of imputation which Paul discusses. That’s what the whole gospel is about. No I am not Pelagian – a common charge from Calvinists and other Augustinians.

        Yes, I have read E.O. theology and there isn’t a whole lot of difference between that and RCC. Perhaps you’d like to review my article about E.O. at:
        http://watchmansbagpipes.blogspot.com/2010/07/eastern-orthodoxy-is-it-really-orthodox.html

        So I am not a “theolog” because by your standards I do not have an open mind. NO, I do not have an open mind when it comes to adding to the Scripture.

      • PS..Of course with Mary I was speaking of Scripture, I have noted you have said nothing to the verses I quoted from the Synopic Gospels about Mary!

      • Glenn: Well here we are again, it seems you see yourself as some kind of ‘Christian apologist’ – yes, I looked at your blog, and read your piece on the EO. Btw, it seems you were taken to better task by a few others in the comments. I hope you learned something? As noted about the EO and their doctrine of the Atonement, as in fact they would see Christ’s death as that of the great Victor over death, and evil, etc. Which is certainly part of the great doctrine of Christ’s Atonement. Though I hope as you, we must not forget the great vicarious truth of Christ’s death! And here the Orthodox lag with their lack of the doctrine of Imputation!

        First, I will say that most of your article on the EO was somewhat just historical, and when you try to critic the doctrine of the EO, and disagree, it is not fairly done, and really thin. You even admit you did not know what “theosis” was? I am not here to teach you or anybody on the depth of the doctrines of Orthodoxy. I am sure there are others out there, within Orthodoxy perhaps that can do that, as you have seen already. Though I do know my share of the doctrines of the EO, hav’in been in an Anglican & Orthodox dialogue (mostly clergy, and theolog’s), years back. I have my share of books of the Orthodox Theologians & theolog’s. In fact on the doctrine of Christology, and the Trinity of God, they have of course lead the way for the Church Catholic, with the Ecumenical Councils, from Nicara I, Coustantinople I, Ephesus, to Chalcedon. And many if not most good oriented Evangelicals pretty much accept these Councils, as biblical, etc. (I guess this leaves you out, Mr. Christian Apologist! ;) )

        *Btw, historically the EO don’t consider just anybody to be a “Theologian”, but those who have really served the Church here. Perhaps that might be part of why I use the term “theolog”…us theolog’s are still working hopefully on serving the Church in our little measure? Note. Eph. 4: 11-12! If I have left you out here, it is because you yourself, leave yourself out, judging so much of the Catholic and Historical Church! This btw, is one of the bane’s of Fundamentalism! (Again, I note how you called the great Augustine as a “false teacher”!) He is certainly NOT infallible, but a “false” teacher? That is just an odious statement! That is part of the reductionism of your Fundamentalism! Sorry mate, gotta call them like I see them at least! But again, in the end.. only GOD will be the judge! But YOU place yourself outside of orthodoxy, at least to degree. And I simply asked if you were Pelagian, but was your answer a yes or no? I mean you have already watered down ‘Original Sin’, maybe your more EO? cough, cough.. ;) Yeah, the EO miss the depth of the doctrine of Sin in my Pauline theological understanding. Though many of them are still “Brethren”, even with their theological errors. And guess what? We all have theological error no doubt! We all must watch out the extrinic use of our guiding principles, whether Aristotelian, Thomistic, Hegelian, Heideggerian, or whatever they be…i.e. aims, limits and problems, etc.

      • Robert,

        No, I did not “water down” original sin. That phrase is no where used in Scripture so it becomes up for grabs as to what its definition is. As I said, we are all born with a sin nature – we are not responsible for Adam’ sin, rather we suffer the consequences and inherit his sin nature, which means we will sin and there is no two ways around it.

        Yes, I am a Christian apologist and thoroughly believe this is the ministry where God has placed me. The E.O. isn’t much better than Romanism for adding traditions to Scripture.

        And yes, Augustine was indeed a false teacher who started the whole idea of God choosing who to save and who to send to hell. Scripture says God made the way of Salvation and it is us who choose to accept it or reject it.

        And by the way, a false teacher isn’t necessary not a Christian. Just look at Beth Moore; although a horrible teacher with all sorts of false teachings and claims of direct revelation from God for said false teachings, is nevertheless a believer.

        We will just have to agree to disagree.

      • Oh, and where do you get off suggesting that I don’t consider most of the early church councils to be biblical!!! Those which brought in heretical doctrines about Mary, or transubstantiation, or icon worship, etc, cannot be considered wholly biblical.

      • Not sure I get ya Glenn? You do or ya don’t accept the Ecumenical Councils? (the First Five let’s say?) They are btw historically off the ground of the EO, but Rome of course sent some to Nicaea (325), and accepted it!

        And btw, if you are an Arminian? Just say it! And sadly many here don’t consider Rome or the EO, Christian bodies, Duh…that’s this whole blog! So there’s not much room to “agree to even disagree” here!

      • Robert,
        I think I stated it pretty plainly that I accept the first few councils.

        No, I am not an Arminian. That is another charge brought by Calvinists and other Augustinians if you don’t agree with them. I think Arminius was closer to the truth than Calvin. I don’t follow ANY of man’s theology. I follow just what the Bible says and without additions by the Pope, or Luther, or Calvin, et al. I agree with the many of the ante-Nicene fathers of which I have read (not read all yet).

        I don’t consider RCC or EO to be true Christian bodies; individual members may well come to Christ in spite of the false teachings of those bodies. I place them in the “cultic” realm, but not as full-blown cults. I put them in the same category as the SDA, Local Church and Church of Christ. Although I think Rome and EO are farther from the truth than the last two!

      • Glenn: Indeed again poor logic! How can you accept and follow the first “few” (whatever that means?) of the Ecumenical Councils, which are “Orthodox” or the EO, and them reject them as a “Christian Church”? Logical fallacy mate! Lots of that going on here!

      • Robert, NO. The church as it was during the first councils had not yet morphed into the establishments they became.

      • Glenn: Wrong again mate, the logical and even theological principle was already there, both for the East, as for Rome! Got’cha on philosophy there! Ouch! Though I know you will shout as the one man “theolog”, and so-called apologist! ;)

      • Robert,

        Feel free to take the high ‘intellectual” ground. I weary of this course of revisionist history.

      • “Weary”? You have no idea, how weary poor logic, bad history and just awful theology can be! I have been listening!

      • Robert,
        I would suggest my logic has been sound, as is my theology and history. Revisionist history is all that is available to support Romanist and Augustinian heresies.

      • Btw, it is the anniversary of the RCC’s Council of Trent, Jan. 13, 1547! I have a link on my blog. Note, the Augustinian Catholics were a few of the one’s that were close on the doctrine of Justification, grace always comes frist!

      • *first Say am I the last man standing? I think I’m the oldest? ;) I know, here come a few Irish jokes also. Hard headed that we are!

      • Glenn: It is you who have put yourself in a very narrow place, with your overt type of fundamentalist method! I have certainly seen and shown this in several places, but you again are blinded by your suppositions and presuppositions. Simply, even the great realities from our Judeo and Christian Revelation are themselves great mysteries, like the foundation of our faith with the Incarnation! It is a great “mystery”. we can see in 1 Tim. 3:16. Btw, let me try to suggest for you, the reading and theological work of Irenaeus, he is perhaps one of the first and also one of the greatest early Christian theolog’s, his theological understanding of God’s economy as an architect-like, from creation to incarnation, to Christ’s death and resurrection, are also seen in the Salvation History of the elect and the creation. And for Irenaeus the Church is always visible, catholic, and itself right in the centre of redemption! And the Church always presents Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry. Sadly this truth is often quite lost today in many Protestant and even so-called Evangelical churches! I am really happy to see what is happening in some American Presbyterian Churches, with the so-called Federal Vision. And also even some of this is being seen in some Lutherian Churches. As an Anglican I call it Word & Sacrament! But the renewal is always Christ, and as we can see Him, who is Himself the One Mediator: “For through him we both (Jew & Gentile) have access in one Spirit to the Father.” (Eph. 2:18) And this is itself the beauty of our Trinitarian worship! But once again, it is just God’s most profound mystery!

      • You two need to give it a rest and agree to disagree.

      • Robert,

        Interesting logic fallacy claiming I am blinded by my suppositions and presuppositions. I can return that back at you. My suppositions and presuppositions are based on Scripture, while yours are based on the traditions of men. Is there really anything wrong with a fundamentalist position? I’d like to be sure the pilot of the airplane I’m in is a fundamentalist pilot, and I want to make sure I have a fundamentalist CPA to do my taxes, etc.

        I have certainly seen and shown you in several places where your suppositions and presuppositions, as well as blatant eisegesis, leads to a perpetual virgin, sinless Mary – one who was never known for the first couple centuries.

        You keep bringing in all sorts of other theological issues which have nothing to do with Mary being sinless or a virgin, and I don’t respond because I have no idea what point you are trying to make since they have no bearing on the topic.

        I have read Irenaeus, and I fail to see what he has to say about the issue of Mary. You keep bringing in all these other issues as if I don’t understand the Christian faith. As I said before, you are very condescending in that regard.

        You’re “happy” to see the aberrant, legalistic “Federal Vision” invade the Church, and that tells me more about your theology.

        Sue,
        I have already said I’d like to agree to disagree, but Robert apparently can’t handle that and keeps driving at things not even in discussion, insinuating my total ignorance because I challenge the heresies and false teachings of Rome – those same things he holds to.

        I’m don with this topic as it is fruitless. If Robert needs the last word, so be it.

      • Sue: I have re-read some of these, it seems our friend Glenn, just wants to win an argument, but I too can be a hardhead. Gee I wonder who is the real “apologist” here? ;) We must leave that to God! But I will always stand on both the Word & reason! Btw, note today is that anniversary of the Council of Trent. That was certainly pressed by the Reformation, with the Counter-Reformation. But, in some places the Roman doctrine of Justification comes at least near the Protestant, as noted by the need for the Grace of God in everything. But of course Rome tried to have it both ways, with faith & works “together”. Indeed “works” follow faith, but it is faith alone that justifies.!

  39. No one answered my marriage question and the fact that an unconsummated marriage is NOT a marriage.

  40. No one mentioned my Eucharist reference.

    If Mary needed to be sinless for Jesus to be in her, then you need to sinless for the Holy Spirit to live in you.

    If you believe communion is real flesh, then you also need to be sinless to have his body in you.

  41. Which one?

  42. Sue: Sorry I have not answered this, because it simply does not apply! It is a poor ad hoc at best question. YOU people who agree with each other might find it worthy, but not me. I have spent some time here, but I fear for naught?

    As to Mary and Joseph’s “betrothal”, GOD was simply in control here, not man or even custom!

  43. You are taking the humanness out of their marriage which is not a custom but covenant.

    • Sue: I am one that truly believes in the “mystery” and even hiddeness of God, still even as He reveals Himself, and what He wants to reveal. Note again Luther here! And while I am here, Luther is just so profound, amen.. Dr. Martin Luther, Doctor of Sacred Theology! The Incarnation is a forever a mystery we will never fully comprehend! There will always be “mystery”, even right in the middle of the biblical revelation!

  44. Sue: I cannot find Glenn’s last post? This tread has run its course I think, best to all ‘In Christ’! Remember, as Christians we are “Brethren” and the Body of Christ together! Though God alone knows the ‘Wheat & the Tares’, the ‘Sheep & the Goats’. :)

  45. This is an exerpt from a sermon by a man who I very much respect. Anyway, he states in regards to trying the spirits:

    “Observe the strong and striking language of John– “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world.”

    John here addresses himself to the family of God. “Beloved.” It is these beloved ones, beloved of God and of himself, whom he warns, and upon whom he urges the necessity and the importance of this trial. He would not encourage that foolish, childish credulity which receives everything and everybody that makes a profession of religion. And this warning cry is addressed to us as well as to them, if we are among the “beloved;” and indeed was never more needed than now. There is much delusion abroad, many errors, many abounding evils. There is then with us a kind of spiritual necessity not to believe every spirit, not to receive with superstitious credulity whatever any man or minister, however high in a profession, may tell us. We are to be upon our guard not to be imposed upon by erroneous men, however plausible or however popular, not to be beguiled by any false spirit, from whatever quarter it blows or from whatever mouth it comes; but in the calm, quiet depths of our own bosom, in all simplicity and godly sincerity, with meekness and humility, to try the spirits, to weigh them, to examine them well, and come to some decision in our own conscience what manner of spirit that is, which calls upon us for our acceptance as of God.

    We are continually thrown into the company of professors of religion. What must we test then, in them that we may follow John’s directions? Not their words altogether, though words sometimes are quite sufficient to manifest a man’s real character, for a “fool’s voice is known by the multitude of words.” (Eccles. 5:3.) But men may say anything; and the more men’s consciences are hardened the more boldly and presumptuously they can speak. What man in business trusts men’s words, unless they have other evidence? How deceptive words are! What imposition is continually practiced by plausible words and strong protestations, loud declarations, and repeated promises. Men of business look for something beyond all these words– they want realities, substance, facts, deeds and documents, responsibility and security. And shall we be less wise than they? Shall the children of this world be wiser in their generation than the children of light? We then have to try the spirits, our own and others, to see whether they are of God, leaving to novices and self-deceivers to be beguiled by the plausible words of ‘hypocrites in Zion’.

    But how shall we try them?

    There are four ways whereby we may try the spirits, whether they are of God.

    1. The first is by the word of truth. God has given us the Scriptures, blessed be his holy name, as a perfect revelation of his mind and will. There he has deposited his sacred truth in all its purity and blessedness, that it may shed a continual and steady light from generation to generation. We must then bring ourselves and others to the test of the Scriptures to know whether the spirit which is in us or in them is of God or not. Now in this chapter John gives us several tests whereby to try the true spirits. One is the confession that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh. In those days there was a set of pestilent heretics who denied the real humanity of our blessed Lord. They held that his body was not real flesh and blood of the substance of the Virgin, but a mere shadowy appearance. But what was the effect of this vile and damnable error? To destroy in a moment all the effects of Christ’s suffering and death; for if his body were a shadowy body, there could be no taking of the nature of the children, no substitution of himself in their place and stead, and therefore no true sacrifice, no real atonement for sin. In this day we do not hear much of an error like this, for it seems quite to have died out. And yet men may deny that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh if they deny the fruits that spring out of his coming in the flesh.

    An Antinomian, for instance, still denies it, because Jesus Christ came to make us holy, to keep us from ungodliness, and purify unto himself a peculiar people zealous of good works. The Antinomian spirit, therefore, really denies that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh; for it denies the power of his resurrection in raising us up to a new life, the efficacy of his blood to sanctify as well as to atone, and indeed all that Jesus has done to reconcile us unto God, as far as regards its manifestation in our hearts and lives.

    So also the Pharisaic spirit equally denies that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. If you can save yourself by your own works, what do you need Jesus Christ for? Why need Jesus Christ have come in the flesh if your works could save you, and you can stand upon your own righteousness? Thus the Pharisee denies that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh as much as the Antinomian.

    And could we pursue the point through all its various bearings, we would find that every manifestation of the spirit of error is a virtual denying that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh; for his coming in the flesh is the root of all blessings and of all blessedness, as the root of all our standing in him and of every blessing with which we are blessed in him. The spirit, therefore, of error, in all its branches is a virtual denial of Jesus Christ having come in the flesh.

    But again, John gives us another test, the hearing of the apostles. “He that is of God hears us.” A listening to God’s word as revealed in the Scriptures, a drinking into the very spirit of truth as delivered by the apostles and handed down in the word of God, a receiving tenderly and graciously, with a child-like spirit, God’s truth, so as to be saved and blessed thereby, is a test to which we must bring every spirit, whether the spirit of truth or the spirit of error.

    2. But I said that there is another test whereby we are to try the spirits, and that is by the work of God upon our own soul. Many have the word of God in their hands and in their mouths; but what is the word of God to them? They have no light to see its meaning; no understanding to enter into its holy and gracious declarations; no faith to believe what it reveals; in a word, it has no effect upon them. To bring them therefore to the word of God would be like taking a blind man and putting scales in his hands to weigh an article of merchandise. He has no eyes to see scales or weights. You must have eyes to see the tests in God’s word that you may apply God’s word as a test to try whether you possess a true or false spirit. The work of God upon your own soul, the life of Jesus in your own breast, the operations of the Spirit upon your own conscience, the gracious feelings produced within you by the power of God– this is a test besides the Scriptures whereby we try the spirits.

    Let me open up this a little more fully and clearly by appealing to your own experience. You are thrown sometimes into the company of some of those characters which I have just described, and get into conversation with them; for they are generally very forward to talk. Say then that you meet with a man, a great professor of religion, but full of that light, trifling, carnal, careless spirit, which I have pointed out as marking a spirit of error. Is not your soul grieved? Do you not see, do you not feel that the grace of God is not in that man, or, at least, sadly buried by his worldly spirit? Can you not come to some decision in your own breast that this carnal, trifling, worldly, proud, covetous spirit which you see in him or in others is not the Spirit of Christ, and that the man who is so thoroughly under its influences and manifests it so clearly and visibly in his life and conduct, is not a partaker of the grace of Christ? But why do you come to this decision? Because you know what the Spirit of Christ does in you, and that you are a living witness of the tenderness it communicates, the fear of God it implants, the reverence of the name of God it produces, the carefulness and jealousy over self, the desire to be right, the fear to be wrong, which are the effects and fruits of the grace of God. You find these things in your own breast if you are a partaker of the grace of Christ. You bring then the spirits which you daily encounter in your path to the test; and if these are directly opposed to what the Spirit of Christ has done for and in you, you say, “The Spirit of Christ is not here. There is no tenderness of conscience in this man, no reverence of God, no fear of his great name, no sense of the evil of sin, no holy mourning nor godly sorrow for it, no forsaking it, no walking as becomes a Christian. Call this the Spirit of Christ? The Spirit of Christ is not in it.”

    Thus, as you have divine teaching in your own bosom, you bring to that inward test the spirits which are continually presenting themselves; and by weighing them tenderly, cautiously, and carefully– not in a proud, dictatorial way, but with great caution, fearing lest you may deceive yourself from a wrong judgment, you weigh in this inward balance the true spirit and false, and from the inward testimony of God in your soul spiritually discern for your own guidance which is the spirit of truth and which is the spirit of error.

    This may seem harsh doctrine; and indeed it would be so unless it were scriptural, and unless this spirit of judgment were carefully regulated by the Spirit’s inward teaching. Does not the apostle say, “He that is spiritual judges [or "discerns," margin] all things?” (1 Cor. 2:15.) “You have an unction from the Holy One,” says John, “and you know all things.” But where is this unction? “The anointing which you have received of him abides in you.” (1 John 2:20, 27.) In this way the Lord is “a spirit of judgment to him that sits in judgment.” (Isa. 28:6.) Are you not sensible, you discerning people of God, what spirit is breathed from the pulpit by the minister under whom you sit?

    And here let me drop a word to all who fear God now before me. Don’t look to the words of the minister you hear so much as to his spirit. Of course, if he preaches the truth, his words will be in harmony with it; but he may preach the letter of truth without being under the influence of the Spirit of truth. Is the Spirit of Christ in him? Does the blessed Spirit communicate through him any gracious influence to your soul? Is there any softening of your spirit under his word; any unction resting upon your soul; any tenderness drawing up your affections Godwards; any sweet reviving and blessed renewing of the love and power of God in your soul, as known and experienced in the days of old? Or are you searched, rebuked, reproved, admonished, warned, cautioned by an inward light, life, and power which flow into your heart through his word? Are you sensibly humbled, broken down, and softened into contrition, humility, meekness, and quietness of spirit, with confession and supplication before the Lord? I repeat the word– Try the man’s spirit; for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

    How many ministers breathe a harsh, proud, contentious, self-exalting spirit; a spirit which, call it what you will, or disguise itself as you may, is alien altogether to the Spirit of Christ. No humility, no brokenness, no tender regard for God’s honor and glory, no separation of the precious from the vile, and no commending themselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God, show themselves in them. Again, I say, try the spirits whether they be of God.

    3. There is a third test, whereby we try the spirits; that is, the effects and influences of this spirit in our own bosom.

    This test is closely allied to the preceding, but is of a more practical nature. If you are possessed of the light and life of God in your soul, you will watch the influence of your own spirit. You will observe how it influences your thoughts, your movements, your words, your actions; how it is in you as a guiding light to all that is good, and a sensible bar to all that is evil. Sometimes, for instance, you feel softened, humbled, melted down before the footstool, sweet spirituality of mind flowing in, heavenly affections flowing out, a separation from the spirit of the world, making you desire to be alone with God, and to enjoy a sense of his presence and love in your heart. This is a right spirit– the very spirit of truth, the very spirit of Christ. It has right effects, right influences, and by this you see it is the spirit of truth.

    Or sometimes you may find a different spirit working in you– pride, harshness, self-justification, covetousness, rebellion, self-pity, entanglement in business and worldly cares, and all these secretly quenching the life of God in your soul. You are sensible of this wrong influence in your breast; you can see it is not the spirit of holiness nor the Spirit of Christ, but an alien spirit, a spirit diametrically opposed to the spirit of truth and love.

    4. There is another test, the influence which the spirit has upon others. You will have an influence upon those with whom you live. There will be an influence emanating from you towards your families, your servants, your friends, and those with whom you are brought into daily contact. And you may trace in your own bosom, for you will be honest with yourself, the workings of a gracious spirit and the workings of an ungodly spirit. Sometimes you find peevishness, fretfulness, hasty temper manifesting itself in words and expressions highly unsuitable the grace and spirit of Christ. You are condemned; you go to bed with a heavy heart; you can hardly go to sleep because through the day you have manifested an angry temper, or been too much entangled in business. Here you trace the effect of a wrong spirit.

    Or you get into argument and find working in you a dividing spirit, a spirit of jealousy, or prejudice, or enmity, or dislike to some of the dear family of God. You are conscious you have an unforgiving spirit that you cannot master, but you are not insensible to it; you hate its workings and abhor its influence. Now watch the influence of your spirit upon others.

    And a minister has to watch this especially– the influence his spirit has upon the people. Are there effects and fruits following his word? Are they searched, tried, examined? Is their conscience made more alive and tender? Is there a gracious influence attending the ministry of the word? I would not be fit to stand here in the name of the Lord unless I stood up in the Spirit of Christ; and if I stand up in the Spirit of Christ, and with the grace of Christ in my heart, the word of Christ in my mouth, there will be communicated to you a gracious influence which you will sensibly feel– not always feel; but from time to time there will be a gracious influence attending the word to your heart, by which sometimes your doubts and fears are removed, your burdened soul encouraged, your difficulties cleared up, Christ made precious, and the things of God sealed upon your heart with fresh life and power.

    Thus, by these tests– the word of God, your own experience, the effect and influence of the Spirit upon yourself, the effect and influence of your spirit upon others– we may try the spirits whether they are of God. And if we find that we have the right spirit, or are seeking more of its influence, let us thank God and take courage.”

    Excerpt JC Philpot

    http://www.gracegems.org/Philpot/trying_the_spirits.htm

    • Just to note, Philpot is a very certain Calvinist, and this is good in places, but a sermon, rather than an exegesis of the Text in John 4:1-3. Btw, see 1 John 4:4 thru 6. How far can we press verse 6? We simply must note the context of the Incarnation itself!

  46. Philpot’s letter of resignation from the Church of England

    March 28, 1835.

    Mr. Provost: I beg leave to resign the Fellowship of Worcester College, to which I was elected in the year 1826. This step I am compelled to take because I can no longer with a good conscience continue a Minister or a Member of the Established Church.

    After great and numerous trials of mind, I am, as I trust, led by the hand of God thus to separate myself from that corrupt and worldly system, called the Church of England. Her errors and corruptions, as well as her utter contrariety to a Gospel Church as revealed in the New Testament, have been for two or three years gradually opening upon my mind. But though I have thus slowly and by degrees obtained light from above to see the Established Church somewhat in her true colors, it is, I confess, only but very lately that the sin of remaining in her has been forcibly laid upon my conscience. I have felt of late that, by continuing one of her ministers, I was upholding what in the sight of the holy Jehovah is hateful and loathsome.

    I have felt that, by standing up in her pulpit, I was sanctioning a system in principle and practice, in root and branches, corrupt before God. I have felt that I was keeping those children of God who sat under my ministry in total darkness as to the nature of a true Gospel Church. I have felt that both I myself, and the spiritual people that attended my ministry, were, in principle and system, mixed up with–the ungodly, the Pharisee, the formalist, the worldling, and the hypocrite. And thus, while I remained in the Church of England, my principles and my practice, my profession and my conduct, my preaching and my acting, were inconsistent with each other. I was building up with the right hand what I was pulling down with the left.

    I was contending for the ‘power’–while the Church of England was maintaining the ‘form’. I was, by my preaching, separating the people of God from ‘the world lying in wickedness’–and the Church of England, in her Liturgy and Offices, was huddling together the spiritual and the carnal, the regenerate and the unregenerate, the sheep and the goats. I was contending for regeneration as a supernatural act wrought upon the souls of the elect alone by the Eternal Spirit–and the Church of England was thanking God for regenerating every child that was sprinkled with a little water. True prayer I was representing as the Spirit’s work upon the soul, as the groanings of a burdened heart, as the pouring out of a broken spirit, as the cry of a child to his heavenly Father, as the hungering and thirsting of a soul that panted after God. The Church of England tied me down to cold, hackneyed, wearisome forms, in which I prayed for the Royal Family, the Parliament, the Bishops, and all sorts and conditions of men, with scarcely one petition that the Spirit would rule in a regenerate heart.

    My soul was pained and burdened within me at hearing the wicked and the careless take into their lips the sweet petitions of David in the Psalms. I heard around me those who I knew from their life and conversation had never for a moment spiritually felt the pangs of a wounded conscience, say, ‘I stick fast in the deep mire where no ground is; I am come into deep waters, so that the floods run over me’. I heard those who never desired or longed after anything but the gratification of their own lusts and covetousness, repeat aloud, ‘Like as the deer desires the water-brooks, so longs my soul after you, O God’. Those that were dressed up in all the colors of the rainbow, I heard saying, ‘As for me, I am poor and needy’. Graceless men who had never felt a drop of the Spirit’s teachings, and who outside of the Church swore, jeered, and scoffed, would cry in my hearing, ‘Take not your Holy Spirit from me’. Adulterers and adulteresses repeated aloud, ‘I will wash my hands in innocency, and so will I go to Your altar’. While the self-righteous Pharisee would sound in my ears, ‘I will go forth in the strength of the Lord God, and will make mention of Your righteousness only’.

    Thus the gracious and blessed experience of God’s saints was mocked and trampled upon, and the fervent prayers and breathings of the Spirit in contrite souls were profaned by the ungodly taking them into their unhallowed lips. And all this I was conscious was not a casual occurrence, or such as arose from the unsuggested will of individuals, but was the deliberate principle and system of the Church of England. I saw it was so by her teaching every child to say he was made in his baptism ‘a member of Christ, a child of God, and an inheritor of the kingdom of Heaven’. I saw it was so by that system of responses which she enjoins upon all the congregation to make, and again and again has my soul been burdened at hearing the wicked little children around me mock God by shouting out the responses, as they had been systematically trained to do by ignorant ministers, parents, school-masters and school mistresses.

    Being for the last three years a hearer and not a reader of the Liturgy, I have been compelled at times to close my ears with both my hands, that I might not hear the mechanical cries of the children, one of whose responses they always thus worded, ‘We have left undone those things which we ought not to have done’. I have groaned within me at hearing the ungodly around me thus mock God, and so far was I from joining in the dead and spiritless forms of the Prayer Book, that I could only secretly pray, ‘Lord, deliver me from this worldly and unholy system’.

    Every dull and dry prayer seemed to lay a fresh lump of ice on my heart, and when I got into the pulpit, nothing but the hand of God, to whom I cried for help, could take off that deadness and barrenness which these wearisome forms had, in a great measure, laid upon me. At times, too, when I viewed the gettings up and sittings down, the bowings, the turnings to the East, the kneeling in this place and standing in that, and the whole routine of that ‘bodily service’ with which the blessed Jehovah was mocked, I could not but look on the whole as a few degrees only removed from the mummery of a Popish mass-house.

    But though I felt, and at times could groan beneath the wretched formality of the Church of England, I was from two motives chiefly kept within her. One was, that I desired to be useful to the children of God in a dark neighborhood, with whom I had been connected for nearly seven years, and of whom some professed to derive profit from my ministry. The other was altogether carnal, and, though hiding itself in the secret recesses of my heart and therefore unperceived, was doubtless of much weight with me. This was the desire of retaining that comfortable competence which my Fellowship secured. My heart, I freely confess, has often sunk within me at the prospect of my already weak health terminating in confirmed illness, with poverty and need staring me in the face. I was also praying for an opening from the Lord to show me my path clearly, as, though I was determined neither to accept preferment, nor take another curacy, I was unwilling to throw up my ministry until the ‘death of the very aged incumbent.’ Lately, however, I have been brought to see ‘that I must not do evil that good may come’, and that if my conscience was fully convinced of the sin of remaining in the Church of England, no clearer or more direct intimation of the will of God was needed.

    Thus have I laid open the inward workings of my heart, and the experience through which I have been led, in order to show that the resignation of my Fellowship and Curacy, and secession from the Church of England, is no sudden and hasty step, but the gradual and deliberate conviction of my soul.

    But besides these particular evils under which I especially ‘groaned, being burdened’, as being brought into continual contact with them, I have felt that by continuing in the Establishment I sanction and uphold every other corruption that is mixed up with so worldly a system.

    Thus I must sanction–the union of Church and State; the putting of the King in the place of Christ as Head of the Church; the luxury and pomp of the bishops; the giving away of livings for electioneering purposes; the heaping of office by ungodly parents on ungodly children; the system of tithes (I cannot but wonder how men who profess spiritual religion, and call themselves Evangelical ministers, can take tithes from carnal and ungodly farmers; no, as I have known some do, screw them up to the highest pitch, and even employ legal means to enforce their payment; while others of the same name and pretension exact tithes from gardens watered by the sweat of the laborer, and enforce burial and similar fees from the poor, when they themselves ride about in their carriages and phaetons. Of this I am confident, that they are not taught thus to act by the Blessed Spirit, who guides the regenerate into all truth, makes the conscience tender, and gives compassion towards the poor and needy. The New Testament authorizes no other payment to ministers but free and voluntary offerings; and thus all tithes, fees, and dues are part of that ‘mystery of iniquity’ of which Babylon, the mother of harlots, is the head); the principle and practice of Ecclesiastical Courts; the manufacturing of ministers by the gross at the Bishops’ ordinations, and all that mass of evil which has sprung out of a worldly and wealthy Establishment. When Christ has bidden me ‘call no man Father on earth’, and not to be called myself ‘Rabbi’, and ‘Master’, and consequently by no title distinctive of priesthood or ministerial office, I must sanction the decking out of His professed ministers with the trappings of Antichrist, such proud titles, I mean, as Reverend, Very Reverend, Right Reverend, Most Reverend, Father in God, My Lord, Your Grace, and the like.

    As a minister of the Establishment I must also sanction that abominable traffic in livings whereby ‘the souls of men’ are bought and ‘sold’ (an especial mark of Babylon, Rev. 18:13), and knocked down to the highest bidder by the auctioneer’s hammer. Thus the whole system, in its root, stem, and branches, manifests itself to a renewed and spiritual mind as part and parcel of that Antichrist and Babylon which the Lord foreshowed His servants should arise, and from which He calls them to come out and be separate.

    As a member, too, of the University, and Fellow of the College, I am unavoidably and necessarily mixed up with many evils, which I am convinced are equally hateful to God. Thus, in this capacity, I must sanction the whole principle of a University, as needful to qualify men to become ministers of Jesus Christ. But who that knows experimentally the sovereignty of Jehovah in choosing His ministers will not feel it to be dreadful presumption thus to train up unregenerate men to stand forth in His holy name?

    The call to the ministry is as sovereign as the call by grace. And Jehovah will take the tinker from his barrow, and the cobbler from his stall, and send them to preach His Word, as he took Elisha from the plough, and Amos from ‘gathering sycamore fruit’. By continuing, therefore, a member of the University I tacitly set aside the gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit, which can alone qualify a man for the ministry, and substitute a knowledge of Latin and Greek, and such mere ‘letter-learning’ as is called Divinity. But by doing this I necessarily reject as ministers some of God’s most eminent and deeply-taught servants, as Bunyan, Deer, and Huntington; and exalt in their room unregenerate men, who were never taught a single truth by the Eternal Spirit.

    And as, by continuing a member of the University, I sanction its principle, so in some measure do I sanction its practice. What that practice is, let those testify who have passed through the various stages of Undergraduate, Bachelor, and Master of Arts. But where in all that practice do I see the marks of Christ, or ‘the footsteps of His flock’? Can they be traced in the drawing rooms and dining rooms of the Heads of Houses? in the Common-rooms of the Fellows? in the breakfasts, wine-parties, and suppers of the Undergraduates? What, I would ask, is usually heard in the latter but shouting, and singing of unclean songs, or conversation on the boat-race, the steeple-chase, or the fox-hunt? And what is commonly heard in the former but the news and politics of the day, and all such trifling, and sometimes even unseemly conversation, as is the mark of the soul that is ‘dead in sins’? Where among all these, either professed ministers of Jesus Christ or such as are training to be so, is the name of the Savior, or the voice of prayer heard? If anywhere, it is among a few despised undergraduates, who have enough religion to see the open evils around them, but not enough grace or faith to separate from the system altogether.

    And who that knows the University will not allow the following to be a faint sketch of the course run by most of her children? Initiated in boyhood in wickedness at one of the public schools, those dens of iniquity, or at a private school, in some cases but a shade better and in others worse, the youthful aspirant to the ministry removes to College, where, having run a career of vanity and sin for three years, he obtains his degree. Fortified with this, and his College testimonials, procured without difficulty except by the very notoriously immoral, and those who have shown some symptoms of spiritual religion, he presents himself to the Bishop for ordination. Examined by the Bishop’s Chaplain on a few commonplace topics of divinity, and approved, he is ordained amid a heap of other candidates, without one question of a spiritual nature, one inquiry as to his own conversion to God, or one serious admonition as to his motives and qualifications for so dreadful a work. The cold heartlessness and technical formality usually displayed by Bishop, Chaplain, Archdeacon, and Registrar, with the carelessness and levity of most of the candidates, can never be forgotten by one whose heart God has touched, and who has witnessed the solemn mockery of a semi-annual ordination.

    But further, as a Fellow of a College, I am connected with a body of men, who, however amiable and learned they may be (and if I forget the kindness of some of them I would be ungrateful indeed), are yet ignorant of Jesus Christ. Their acts as a body I am a party to, and indirectly, if not directly, sanction. Thus I help to give away college livings to unregenerate men, though I may know in my own conscience that they are not even called by grace, much less to the work of the ministry. I am a party also to giving testimonials indiscriminately of good life and conduct to be presented to the Bishop by the candidates for ordination (the document requiring the college seal), as well as to the electing of Fellows and Scholars for their classical attainments, and thus thrusting them into the ministry, and, in a word, to the whole system of education pursued, which, as a means of qualifying men to be ministers, I believe to be hateful to God.

    In short, I am mixed up with a society of men whose life and conduct, however amiable, moral, and honorable, are not those of ‘the poor and afflicted’ family of God. No other way, then, have I to escape these evils, to ‘keep myself pure, and not to be partaker of other men’s sins,’ than by fleeing out of Babylon.

    Lastly, I secede from the Church of England because I can find in her scarcely one mark of a true church. She tramples upon one ordinance of Christ by sprinkling infants, and calling it regeneration (the Word of God allowing no other than the baptism of believers, and that by immersion); and profanes the Lord’s Table by permitting the ungodly to participate. The true Church is despised; but she is honored. The true Church is persecuted; but she is a persecutor. The true Church is chosen out of the world; but she is part and parcel of it. The true Church consists only of the regenerate; but she embraces in her universal arms all the drunkards, liars, thieves, and immoral characters of the land. She christens them, she confirms them, she marries them, she buries them. And she pronounces of all for whom she executes these offices, that they are regenerate, that ‘all their sins are forgiven them’, that they are ‘the servants of God’.

    If perhaps on a dying bed any doubts and convictions should arise that all is not right for eternity, she sends her minister to visit them, and ‘to absolve them from all their sins’. And having thus lulled their fears, and deluded them to die in peace, she quiets the rising doubts of their friends at the mouth of the grave, by assuring those who ‘this our brother is delivered out of the miseries of this sinful world’, and is ‘committed to the dust in sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life’

    Oh! could the dreadful veil that hides eternity be for a moment lifted up, we would see that thousands, whom the Church of England is blessing, God is cursing; and that tens of thousands whom she is asserting to be ‘in joy and felicity’, are at that moment ‘lifting up their eyes in hell, being in torment’. And while she thus speaks peace and comfort to all that will call her ‘Mother’, although unregenerate and dead in sins, she in her canons excommunicates and pronounces ‘guilty of wicked error’ all that are enlightened of the Spirit to declare she is not a true church, and separate from her communion. What is this but to remove the ancient landmarks of truth and error; ‘to call evil good, and good evil; to put darkness for light, and light for darkness, bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter’?

    At the same time, she shuts up and seals the mouth of all her ministers, and ties them down to say what she says, and to deny what she denies, by compelling them to ‘give their sincere assent and consent to all and everything contained and prescribed in and by the Common Prayer Book, and to promise that they will ‘conform to the Liturgy as by law established’. And if any of them are haply taught of God the things of Christ in their own souls, and having grace and faithfulness to preach what they have tasted, felt, and handled; contradict in the pulpit what they assert in the desk, they are frowned on by Bishops, despised by the clergy around them, and hated by all the worldly part of their parish, until at length the powerful convictions of an enlightened conscience force them to deliver their souls by fleeing out of Babylon.

    But I am told that the Church of England is the only true church; that she derives her sacraments and ministers in a direct, uninterrupted line from the apostles, and that to secede from her is to be guilty of schism. But where are the outward marks of this only true church? Where are the ‘signs’ of these successors of the apostles, as ‘wrought among us in all patience, in signs and wonders, and mighty deeds’? (2 Cor. 12:12). Are they to be found in lordly Bishops, proud and pampered dignitaries, fox-hunting, shooting, dancing, and card-playing clergy? Or are they to be discovered in those mere moral and outwardly decent ministers, who, after their solemn vow ‘to lay aside the study of the world and the flesh’, busy themselves in classics, mathematics, history, modern languages, natural philosophy, divinity, and everything and anything but to know Christ in their own souls?

    Where are the gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit visible in men, who, not being able to utter a word but what is written down, either copy their sermons from books, or forge out of their own heads a weekly lecture on stale morality? Where are the seals of their commission, whereby they ‘approve themselves as ministers of God, by pureness, by knowledge, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left’? (2 Cor. 6 : 6, 7).

    But, perhaps, these outward marks of the successors of the apostles may be discovered in the Evangelical clergy, by some esteemed so highly. What are these, however, as a body, now generally doing but making common cause with the worldly clergy, whom in their hearts they consider to be neither Christians nor ministers, to uphold an unholy system? They are for the most part compounding their sermons out of Simeon’s dry and marrowless ‘Outlines’, looking out for preferment, buying and selling livings, training up their unregenerate sons for the ministry, and ‘putting them into the priest’s office that they may eat a piece of bread’.

    Who among them can give a clear and decisive account of his call by grace, or of his call to the ministry? What description can they give of the entrance of the law into their conscience, bringing with it guilt, condemnation, and death, and of a deliverance by the inward revelation of Christ and the application of the ‘blood of sprinkling’? The greater part are violently opposed to the fundamental doctrines of unconditional election, particular redemption, imputed righteousness, and man’s helplessness. And those who do set forth the doctrines of free and sovereign grace preach them with such dryness and deadness as clearly show that they were never wrought into their experience by the blessed Spirit. Under their ministry the ‘spiritual children’ of God will not sit; for knowing little or nothing of the work of regeneration, and the trials, temptations, or consolations of the people of Christ, they cannot approve themselves to the consciences of the spiritual, either as called by grace or as sent to preach the gospel.

    Thus, with perhaps a few and rare exceptions, the Clergy of the Church of England, whether Orthodox or Evangelical, correspond to that description given by the Holy Spirit, Micah 3: 11: “Her leaders judge for a bribe, her priests teach for a price, and her prophets tell fortunes for money. Yet they lean upon the Lord and say–Is not the Lord among us? No disaster will come upon us.”

    And need we wonder if, as is the priest, so is the people? The congregation of the High church, or Orthodox clergy, as they proudly call themselves, consists, with possibly a few exceptions, of none but open sinners, self-righteous pharisees, and dead formalists. In this ‘congregation of the dead’ the blind lead the blind, and all their weekly confessions, absolutions, prayers, praises, services, and sacraments are, as they will one day find, but one continual mockery of the blessed God, who requires of His worshipers that they ‘should worship Him in spirit and in truth’.

    Of those who sit under the ministry of the Evangelical clergy, the greater part in no wise differ from ‘the congregation of the dead’ described above, being attracted there by the superstitious charm of the Parish Church. Of the remaining part, there may be a few seeking souls who range over these barren heaths, until fairly driven from them by starvation, or brought off by tasting the green pastures and still waters of gospel grace under an experimental minister. The rest are mere formalists, with an evangelical creed in their heads, but without any grace in their hearts; or, if the minister be a high Calvinist, such ‘twice dead’ doctrinal professors as never felt the plague of their own hearts, never had their consciences ploughed up by the law, never loathed themselves in their own sight, and were never ‘plunged in the ditch until their own clothes abhorred them’.

    Humble, lowly, contrite souls, who are deeply acquainted with the workings of grace and of corruption, whose consciences have been made tender, and who have landmarks of the dealings of God with them, cannot long continue where they have fellowship with neither minister nor people. And, indeed, so opposed is the whole principle and practice of the Church of England to the work of grace upon the souls of the elect, and ‘to simplicity and godly sincerity’, that a minister, who is not a hypocrite or a formalist, must, when he has reached a certain point in Christian experience, either flee out of her or awfully sin against the convictions of his own conscience. He may remain in her as a presumptuous dead Calvinist; he may take the highest tone of doctrine, and preach Sunday after Sunday about assurance of personal salvation; but if once he describes the work of the Spirit on the soul he must, at a certain point, either come out of her or, by remaining contentedly within her pale, manifest himself a hypocrite in experience, of all hypocrites and of all hypocrisies the most deceiving and the most dreadful.

    Can a man, for instance, who has known the work of regeneration in his own soul, and whose conscience is made tender by the blessed Spirit, go on long to lie unto God by thanking Him for regenerating infants? Can he who has been sprinkled with the blood of Christ, and been fed with His flesh, continue long to give the elements of His body and blood to the unbeliever, the self righteous, and the ungodly? Can he who has tasted the covenant of grace, and experimentally entered into the everlasting distinction between the sheep and the goats, go on long to mock God by declaring at the grave’s mouth of every departed unbeliever, swearer, and drunkard, that he is a ‘brother’, and is ‘taken to be with God’?

    Notions in the head, however correct, doctrines, however high, a presumptuous confidence of salvation, however loud and lofty, may allow a man thus to trifle with the living JEHOVAH. But a tender conscience, a godly fear, and a trembling sense of God’s holiness and majesty, such as the blessed Spirit works in the soul, must sooner or later bring a man out of this dreadful mockery.

    From this worldly and unholy system I now SECEDE; and blessed be the name of God Most High, who has poured light on my eyes to see these abominations, and given me, I trust, a small portion of that faith of Moses whereby ‘he was willing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season’. For sooner far would I die in a workhouse, under the sweet shinings-in of the eternal Comforter, and His testimony to my conscience that I am born of God, than live and die in ease and independence, without following Jesus in that path of trial and suffering which alone leads to eternal life.

    But my long relationship with yourself, as Head of Worcester College, and with my brother Fellows, will not allow me thus to dissolve my connection with you without faithfully WARNING both you and them of your present state before God. What marks, then, are there in you, or them, of that new birth, without which none can enter the kingdom of heaven? What signs have you, or they, of a broken and contrite spirit? What marks of ‘the faith of God’s elect’? What inward discoveries have you, or they, had of the blood and righteousness of Christ? What testimony of the blessed Spirit to the pardon of your sins, and to your adoption into the family of God? ‘If any man has not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His’, though a sound classic, an acute mathematician, or a learned divine. And to have been professed ministers of Jesus Christ will only add to your condemnation, if you and they live and die in your present state of unbelief and unregeneracy.

    I am weak and ignorant, full of sin and compassed with infirmity, but I bless God that He has in some measure shown me the power of eternal things, and by free and sovereign grace stopped me in that career of vanity and sin in which, to all outward appearance, I was fast hurrying down to the chambers of death.

    With all due respect to you as Provost of Worcester College, Yours faithfully, J. C. Philpot

    • This is a classic position of one that has taken his Calvinist Puritian positions well beyond mere conscience, and attacks what he once held himself. We can thank God that He has had his servants in the CoE, and the list is massive! Again, we are as Luther said, left to our conscience, over the Word of God. And only God gets to judge that! (1 Cor. 4: 3-4, etc.)

  47. they havve become the false prophet of the last days and they do satans bidding. May God have mercy on them.

  48. Dear Glenn and Robert.

    Shalom.

    Make sure you never attack the person. Only the issues.
    Sue

  49. “And so it is with God the King. Yet adoption by the King is such a radical notion, we resist it. We would rather have the occasional brush of God’s presence, or a relic of his solidarity with us, so that God can be an appendage of “our” identity. But God wants more than that; he wants our lives, our adopted identity. By changing us into the new reality of the Spirit, we can call out to God – Abba, Father – as adopted children united to Christ. Yet there are few things more countercultural than the process of adoption – losing your life for the sake of Jesus Christ, to find it in communion with the Triune God.”

  50. Hi Sue.

    I spend most of my critique time on the protestant churches of our day, but I had to check this out.

    …And there it was…on the same page of the PDF (18) as the quote from 2 Timothy 3:16:

    ‘We should not expect total accuracy from the Bible in
    other, secular matters. We should not expect to find in Scripture full
    scientific accuracy or complete historical precision.”

    WOW.

    The “Gift of Scripture?”

    Thanks for keeping me up to date.

    God’s blessings…

  51. All the educational degrees to be had in the world will not manufacture the Holy Spirit within us, Who gives wisdom to understand the truth of the word even to dumb blondes like me.:-)

    There are spiritually mature people who never received much education, went to seminary, or received masters or doctorates, who model the love and humility of Jesus showing they possess the wisdom
    that only comes from the Holy Spirit.

    God bless Sue. xo

    • Hey Diane,

      I would certainly agree, I had a few Irish aunts who were simple women, but were also readers and thinkers, and to my mind they were Catholic-Christian women, not to mention my Irish greatgram, who was a PB, or Plymouth Brethren.

      Btw, my wife is a sweet blond (when she’s not a redhead..lol). And she is not a “theolog”, but a profound spiritual Christian!

      But it is interesting that when God wanted to write most of the NT, and choose the Great Apostle to the Gentiles, He chose the great intellect of the Jewish man Saul/Paul, and brought him to faith!

  52. Possibly…

    God Chose Paul for reasons only He knows that may have had nothing to do with his intelligence…and we just do not know. :-)

    Paul wrote less than half the NT-13 out of 27. So not most…but a good portion.

  53. Oh-the letters…ok…you just wrote NT earlier. Yes-13 letters. Awesome!

    Gal. 1:14-16 noted. :-) Paul admits he had great Jewish learning.

    Noting 1:11 and 12 too. Am so very grateful to the Lord for revealing His gospel to Paul.

    • I am certainly a Pauline Christian foremost! Paul the or an ‘Apostle of the Gentiles’! > Rom. 11:13, Acts 9:15 ; 22:21 (Ephesians 3). And yet Paul always sought to go to the “Jew first”! Even Peter noted this, (Acts 3:26).

  54. In Marian art, at the Annunciation Mary is given the or a “white lily” for her purity, by the angel Gabriel. There have been many painting of this. Speaking for myself of course, this is a sweet tradition and even biblical truth…”Greeting, oh one who is favored” (Lk. 1:28) Of course Mary is a recipient of God’s grace here, if we follow the Vulgate reading, “full of grace”, perhaps Mary is also a bestower of grace, but certainly only because and in the Incarnation itself. Indeed we are seeing divine grace and purpose!

    Thoughts?

    • Robert,

      The only way you can follow the Vulgate reading and then say Mary is a bestower of Grace, is to completely ignore the original Greek. It is only the Vulgate reading which lead to the false teaching of Mary being sinless and that she is a bestower of Grace.

      Other than being highly favored and blessed by God to be the mother of Jesus, she is in every other way the same as all women.

      • Glenn: Let’s just put aside the Vulgate for the moment, and press in on the depth of the mystery of the Incarnation. Surely, the Incarnation of the Son of God, or the Logos, is without a doubt one of the most profound aspects of our Judeo-Christian faith! Here is certainly everything! For without this we have no redemption! And so in this great mystery and purpose we have the so-called Virgin Birth, which is also certainly a literal truth, as we can see in the Scripture. So before, during, and even after this act of God’s revelation, we are left with nothing less than a constant divine truth and mystery! Of this I don’t see how we could not say Amen!

        And it is here, that I would jump ahead somewhat and look at John 19: 25-26. If Jesus next so-called ‘blood brother’James was in just a few days going to be a believer, after the Resurrection of Christ, why in the world would Jesus give the Apostle John the so-called responsibility of Mary His Mother? And in fact, as per the law, where was James, the next in line, as the now oldest so-called ‘blood brother’, at the Crucifixion? Questions btw, that simply cannot be answered, since James was not Jesus “blood-brother”, but step-brother or cousin, and this was why he was not there. And as we see and look carefully at John 19:25-26, John is given Mary as “his Mother”, and Mary is given John as “her Son”. And this became both a spiritual and literal truth and reality!

        And in my thinking, as too “Catholic”, many Lutherans, as Luther, and too Calvin, etc., and many other Protestants. Mary could and would not return to her life as before, but became the great Saint she already was and remained a “virgin”, and never married again, but devoted her life, perhaps near John, and lived her life as a full Christian disciple.

      • Robert,
        You again appeal to later traditions rather than the Bible. Mary was married to Joseph, in every which way. Matthew says they didn’t come together as husband and wife UNTIL Jesus was born – that implies that they did afterwards. Other wise “until” would have been left out. Matthew also says, “BEFORE they came together,” which would be senseless if they never did.

        They were not cousins of Jesus – that was made up by Rome to justify Mary being a virgin forever. There is no scriptural support for such a bizarre teaching.

        James may have become a believer a few days later, but the time was “now” that Jesus gave his mother to the care of John. Other than the close friendships, there is no basis on which to make the claim that now somehow Mary is the mother of the whole church. NON SEQUITUR!

        Of course Mary would not return to the life she was before she conceived by the Spirit – just as the majority of Christians change their lives after conversion. But that again does not mean she had no sin, just like we can’t claim we have no sin. She was just a mortal woman who was blessed to be chosen to be the mother of Christ.

        WHy is there no biblical model of a prayer to Mary? If Mary hears and answers our prayers she must be omniscient as well as omnipotent and omnipresent – another god!

        When someone in Luk 11:27 said Mary was blessed Jesus’ reply could have pointed out that she was sinless and a perpetual virgin, but what did he say? He said “blessed RATHER are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” No special notice of Mary!

        A tradition is not fact, no matter who started it and no matter how many people follow it.

      • Btw, a few of my favorite verses I like to read and meditate on concerning this whole subject are Lk. 2: 19 ; 2: 34-35!

      • Glenn: Since it appears you don’t read Greek? I would suggest reading the NET Bible online, concerning Luke’s Gospel and Matthew, on this subject. And finally, I think the force of Luke 1: 26-38, noting especially verse 1: 28, that Mary was both in a place of redemptive purity, and the place of being the elect-vessel (her womb) for the Incarnation, is quite enough and really necessary for the Virgin Birth, and the Incarnation of Christ! (Note. Rom. 8: 3 “in the likeness of sinful flesh”…Mary’s womb had no sinfulness!). And God certainly removed Joseph from the scene! As an Anglican I would not press Mary as Ever-Virgin, and without a sinful nature, since the Annunciation, but is is a belief from both scripture (reasoned), and certainly part of the “Catholic” and “Orthodox” faith.

        Note, I am not advocating prayers to Mary, or other aspects you mention. But I do stand with the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus, and believe and hold Mary the “Theotokos” (God-bearer), and thus the Incarnate Mother of God!

        Finally, I reason that the “Incarnation” itself demands at least the Ever- Virginity of Mary, and her redemptive sinless position at the Incarnation! That would be the Reformation position, as too my own, and at least the minimal orthodox position. However, I would certainly agree that there has been problems in Roman Mariology, at least in practice, which at times has lead to Mariolatry.

      • Robert,

        NO, I do not read the Greek except as in a parallel Bible. However, using the NET Bible off my shelf, the note on 28 says: “The address,‘favored one’ … points to Mary as the recipient of God’s grace, not a bestower of it. She is a model saint in this passage, one who willingly receives God’s benefits. The Vulgate rendering ‘full of grace’ suggests something more of Mary as a bestower of grace, but does not make sense here contextually.” SO, it seems the NET agrees with me. The passage in Romans is about Jesus coming in the LIKENESS of sinful flesh.

        You still have not demonstrated from Scripture that Mary was sinless or that she remained a perpetual virgin – you just take your bias into the text and find what isn’t there. Sort of like the U.S. Supreme court finding the right to abortion in the “penumbra” of the Constitution. Something made up by personal bias. A womb never has sinfulness – parts of the body aren’t sinful, they are just body parts which can’t do anything without brain processes.

        So God “certainly removed Joseph from the scene.” You have that in Scripture that God removed him rather than he just died of old age or of some illness?

        Yes Mary is Theotokos but that has nothing to do with Mary being anything but a typical woman. The origin of this unique doctrine seems to have been the Council of Chalcedon in 451, where the title Theotokos was given to her. This title means “God-bearer” or “mother-of-God.” The original purpose of this title was not to exalt Mary but to counter a heresy by the Nestorians which said Christ was actually two separate persons – the divine Word and the man Jesus. Supposedly, “the divine Word clothed himself with the man Jesus” while on earth (The Cult of the Virgin, by Elliot Miller and Kenneth R. Samples, p. 20). Since the Council of Nicea in 325 asserted the divinity of Christ, the debate was how the two natures of God and man co-existed, which brought controversy leading to the Nestorian heresy. Chalcedon’s title for Mary was to assert that the man Jesus was born both man and God. Although there are two natures in Jesus, a woman does not give birth to natures, but to people. Since Jesus is indeed God, in a sense Mary is the mother of God. Yet, this title has to be used with qualifications because Jesus as God the Son existed for eternity, while the title could be taken to mean he came into existence when Mary gave birth to Jesus. However, Rome has used this title to elevate Mary above all other humans. Catholic theologian Ludwig Ott, in his book, Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, says, “As the mother of God, Mary transcends in dignity all created persons, angels and men, because the dignity of the creature is the greater the nearer it is to God. … As a true mother she is related by blood to the Son of God according to His human nature.” (p. 197) Is this biblical? We do know that in the Bible, Elizabeth said Mary was blessed among women (Luke 1:42), and indeed she was, “But this is due more to the important role she was elected to play (bringing the Messiah into the world) than the mere fact of a physical relationship. Actually, with what would appear to be divine foresight, Jesus consistently sought to counter the natural human tendency to esteem carnal relationship with him higher than spiritual (Matt. 12:46-50; Luke 11:27-28; 2:48-50). Rather than emphasize his physical relationship with his mother, he seemed to go out of his way to downplay it, even calling her woman (John 2:1-4; 19:26), which…was not a customary address for a Jewish son to use. Furthermore, Paul and the other New Testament authors do nothing to counter this impression that Mary is not to be exalted on the grounds of her physical relationship to Christ.” (The Cult of the Virgin, pp. 22-23)

        There is absolutely no reason to believe Mary was anything other than a normal wife to Joseph. Only by twisted eisegesis could anyone come up with the idea. It is not something which can be “reasoned” from the plain words of the text.

        And Mary’s body is in the ground just as everyone else’s is. Or don’t you think the Bible would have stated so if she was assumed into heaven?

      • Btw, I should have said I would “press” Mary as Ever-Virgin, but not the so-called Assumption! The East calls it the Falling Alseep, which is better! Though it is hard to believe that Mary’s “body” is still corrupting in the ground! (Perhaps Rev. 12:1 can be seen here? But that is faith, not dogma in faith).

      • Glenn: I am glad that you have the NET Bible, I too have a black genuine leather I use. But I also read my Greek NT every A.M., this is sort of my devotion, and also part of my being an Anglican presbyter (in the old days at ordination, you promised to read your Greek NT daily).

        I think YOU have to “prove” also how a sinful woman can be central in the “incarnating” a divine being, without the contamination of sin? This can go both ways! WE simply must see the great “mystery” of Holy Scripture! Everything I see in Lk 2: 26-38 simply points to the greatness of the soul and person of Mary, herself! Though as I have maintained she was certainly without sin at the Annunciation! This is a theological position certainly, but one that seems so apparent, and again central to the depth of the Incarnation itself! I guess I am maximalist here, and you are a minimalist! ;) Sadly, the “minimalist” position here is heterodox and certainly unorthodox at best.

        I am thankfully glad that you have seem sense of the Ecumenical Councils, and accept something of the Theotokos! :)

        As to Mary, her Falling Alseep, (assumption), this could be made on a rather theological level, and I am not really opposed to it, but the Holy Scripture is not as central here.

        Finally, as I have been saying, your approach to both Scripture and the Church is much different than mine, you ARE a fundamentalist, at least in method. And I am not, though I am myself some kind of “biblicist”, but I also see history, and God’s Salvation History, Covenant also as within the Church somehow itself. I am a “Churchman”, and this is I know a very foreign concept for you! And I believe in the Visible reality of the Church Catholic! In places I am a bit High Church, but over all I am a Reformational-Reformed Anglican, which is always historically both “catholic” and “reformed”.

        I think we have covered some ground in the last several days, but now I am going to press on. I realize this blog is mostly a blog against Catholicism, and it is mostly fundamentalist. So I am certainly off my track here. But best to all ‘In Christ’! :)

      • Robert,

        I don’t have to prove anything. YOU are the one arguing from Scriptural silence, while also arguing from man’s tradition. That’s sort of like how all the cults come up with their doctrines also. If we don’t allow the cults to do that, why is it okay for you to do that?

      • Let me leave this link from the Orthodox or EO on this my grand subject.

        http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/evervirgin.aspx

      • Glenn: I am trying or gracefully seeking to draw back on this subject, and now you want to call my belief and positions cultic and man’s tradition. Rather than the seeking to answer my point about a sinful Mary, and a sinless Jesus, but HE takes His body from hers! YOU have not answered that! That is problematic fully, and you just don’t seem to get it?

      • Robert,

        That link is just regurgitating the same stuff as you are. It is making something out of the Biblical passages which just isn’t there. You HAVE TO take that into the text. Your position IS just the same as the cults and it is indeed just man’s tradition. THe cults find stuff in the passages which aren’t there, just as Rome, EO and even you are doing in order to put Mary as a perpetual virgin. Those passages you cite and which are cited in that link have not even the slightest hint that Mary would be a perpetual virgin or that she would be sinless. God uses sinful human beings for his purpose without changing them to be sinless.

        I did answer you point about a sinless Mary – it can not be found in Scripture – Period. You have to rely on man’s tradition to bring the idea into the text. It is not at all problematic for God to use sinful people. You are the one who just doesn’t seem to get it that you can’t drag man’s traditions into the Bible and make a passage say what it was never intended to say.

      • Glenn,

        YOU are the heterodox and even pressing toward heresy! That’s harsh but you deserve it! I have tried to dialogue, reason and gently.. and even firmly teach you, but YOU are the one that simply must be right, for you are the “Fundamentalist”! But anyone that calls Augustine a “false teacher” deserves a tongue lashing! And we can see now who is the one that had to have it HIS way! Btw, that’s the essence of a “heterodox” (look it up)!

      • I am fully aware of the meaning of heterodox.

        So, because I state that you can’t make Mary sinless and a perpetual virgin from the Bible and that you must bring man’s traditions to force them into the text by bias, that makes me a heretic?!?!?

        Because I say Augustine was a false teacher who brought much of the error into the Romanist church, I am a heretic?!!?!?

        So if you follow just what the Bible say and don’t bring in traditions of man, that make you a heretic?!

        I have tried to dialog and reason gently that you MUST look just to what scripture says and not take bias into it, and yet I am the one who is heretical?!?!

        The Anglican Church is nothing but Romanism without a pope. And then you want me to accept everything “reformers” taught even though most of it was just rehashed Romanism.

        What is wrong with going back to what the Bible says? Were the Bereans considered noble for following men or because they searched the Scriptures?

        I challenge you to find ONE, just ONE thing I teach which is heretical or even heterodox, which is found IN the Scripture rather than dogmas of Rome or other man’s denominations which are copy-cats of Rome without a pope.

  55. I invite you to see what was mentioned in the Quran miracles
    You will find what is not incompatible with modern science
    And the scientific miracles contained in the Qur’an 1400 years
    ((The Koran is a book that came down from God ((one God))
    Revealed to Muhammad the Messenger of Islam
    We believe in the Torah and the Bible
    This is some of what came in the miracles of the Qur’an 1400 years ago
    Remember life is a test
    http://www.miraclesofthequran.com/scientific_index.html

    • Dear Muslim friend,
      Thanks for your comment. There are lots of miracles around, but many of them false miracles from Satan. I know a little of the Qur’an, and have one on my shelf. I have a problem with Muhammad, who married a 6 year old little girl and consummated the marriage at 9. Nine year old girls still need their mommy, no? Indeed, this is a case of pedophilia and a grave sin.

      I urge you to read the entire bible including the new testament. Jesus is savior and Lord and died for your sins.Muhammad did not die for your sins.

      About miracles: keep in mind many are false and from the devil.If you call on an evil spirit even not knowing it is evil, it will answer you and keep you deceived by believing in the false miracle.

  56. Nice post. I was checking constantly this weblog and I’m inspired! Very useful information particularly the ultimate section :) I care for such info much. I used to be looking for this particular information for a very lengthy time. Thanks and best of luck.

  57. excellent points altogether, you just gained a new reader.
    What may you suggest about your publish that you just made a few days in the past?

    Any sure?

  58. How much time did it acquire u to create “Catholic Church no longer swears by truth of
    the Bible Suze Blog”? It boasts an awful lot of good information and facts.
    Appreciate it ,Kindra

  59. The bible has never been proven wrong – it is scientific but God does not tell us everything about his creative acts. If Jesus can raise lazarus from dust and instantly create cooked loaves and fishes for 5000 then God certainly made adam out of dust and the whole of creation in six days. There is less evidence for evolution now than there ever was – you only need to google the real evidence. The geologic column of sediments and fossils is exactly in line with Noah’s flood. Civilisations all over the world testify with ancient legends of when the sun stood still during Joshua’s battle.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 46 other followers

%d bloggers like this: