Washed, Sanctified and Justified
in the Sacraments of the Catholic Church.
Hello again De Maria,
Just a few comments before getting into the topic of the priesthood.
We were speaking of “implying” and you said:
“On the contrary, although the Bible ‘implies’ that the Church is the ultimate authority, the Church does not teach that the Church is the ultimate authority. The Word of God, is the ultimate authority, in Tradition and Scripture. The Church is merely the servant of the Word of God.”
Since the church is NOT the final authority, wouldn’t the Bible be in error (according to your argument) to “imply” that the church IS the final authority?Of course, one can certainly teach a truth implicitly, or by “implication.” If the Bible implies something, then that something must be true. But you’re telling me that the Catholic Church teaches XYZ, but that the Bible teaches / implies the contrary. So, which one is wrong? If you say that neither is wrong, you’re just playing a game of semantics.
Russell said...(Part 2)
“The point is, that the Word of God says the Pope and the Church are infallible. Not any single individual. Therefore, whatever is taught by individuals, the Church tests and holds on to what is good… Again, we follow the Church which Scripture calls the Pillar of Truth. Not the teaching of scholars, no matter how brilliant the world considers them.”
So, why bring up the church fathers at all, since they are not infallible, and since they are (according to the New Catholic Encyclopedia) “difficult to interpret on this score”?
In fact, you quoted some of the fathers early on in your main article in responding to my article. No doubt you will say that the fathers “complement” the teachings of the Church on this topic. But then again, some of the fathers CONTRADICT the Church’s teachings and each other on it also. It is a matter of picking and choosing which fathers will be on your side (Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox are all guilty of it). But which fathers are right?
“There is uncertainty only for those who don't believe the Word of God which says ‘hear the Church’ (Matt 18:17) and ‘the Church is the Pillar of Truth’ (1 Tim 3:15). For those who believe these verses, there is no uncertainty.”
The uncertainty we’re dealing with here is not about these Bible verses, but about the teachings of the fathers. If you stand by your statement that uncertainty is “only for those who don’t believe the Word of God,” then the writers of the New Catholic Encyclopedia do not believe the Word of God, since they, themselves are expressing uncertainty. Please read it again:
“GREAT DIFFICULTY is caused by varying terminology and practice… IT IS NOT ALWAYS CERTAIN what sort of confession was required…”
You said that Catholics and Protestants read Scripture differently, and brought up Tradition several times as the key to “rightly dividing the Word.” That’s a “whole nother topic” that we can hopefully discuss.
There’s a lot more I could respond to, but I agree with you that we should let the reader decide whose claims are more reasonable, and leave it at that.
I intend to go to your “priesthood” article and address that topic very soon. I’ll see you over there.
In His Name,
Thanks for contributing.