As I ponder about salvation history according to Scott Hahn and his covenant theology /of course according to the Church…
The Catholic Faith keeps making more perfect sense as I meditate on God’s idea of ‘family’.
If you think about it, how would humanity look like if Adam had not sinned? or if Noah had not sinned?..
This is how I see it. It if all from the family point of view and all blessed by love within the family. So childreen respect their parents, and respect their elders and each other.
It makes sens that in earlier societies, the fathers of the families were also the king of the extanded families turned into tribes. All that happened to Israel is that they managed to keep more closely the model of people goverment as God intended it.
So fathers were in addition to being fathers, local kings, and priests. - A priest is a spiritual father - fathers were also priest because they just didn’t give their childreen biological birth, but also spiritual birth. So everybody in the world had the ‘faith/beliefs of their fathers’…
If Noah’s family had not sinned, Shem the elder brother would have replaced his family to being the chief of the household. This means responsible for the whole human family. and after him, probably first sons from his family would have continued to be ‘father’ (popes) for humanity. All this while other fathers at the head of tribes and nations would have been patriarchs of corresponding nations, etc…
This type of governance would have followed the ‘first born son’ model. It makes perfect sens to me in terms of ‘love’. The hierarchy of love and respect goes from bottom to top, the younger respecting the elders, and the elders ruling ‘in charity’ (sound familiar?)
I believe it is in this sense that Israel is the choosen people of God. Because they are from the elders of the human family: meaning from Shem who is the elder son of Noah. And God kept his eyes in the line of Shem to see who will turnout to say a ‘fiat’ for his will. Of course the ‘first born right’ can be lost as in the case of the brother of Jacob. This show that if they had not been any righteous in Shem’s family had sold out the ‘first born right’ like Isau did, God would have picked from the next in line…and see who shows up in the line of Japhet’s or Ham.
So the character of God is really clear when we look at it from ‘family and love’ point of view.
We see a similar patern in the Church. Jesus pickecd the twelve. Peter became the ‘first born’ in faith when he confessed this faith in Christ. And the Lord made him the first born to in this Faith of the family of God and asked him to confirm his brother in faith.
After our first fathers in faith, the patriarchs, we still have the continuous lines of some patriarchs.
The pope is the patriarch of Rome. And also happen to be in the line of the first born (Peter) . So just like Shem was not only father of his local tribe of his biological children, but also of the whole family of his father, the roman bishop is not just a bishop of Rome, or patriarch of the roman patriarchat, but the pastor of the whole family of God, the Church.
Isn’t this beautiful ?
From God’s point of view, humanity have always been one family.
And even though, it goes mad all the time and loose its identity, God never get tired of trying to keep his childreen in the family.
So Christ restored the human family and made it the family of God himself.
Isn’t interesting that Jesus never talks about building a ‘religion’, but a ‘church’?
Isn’t it even more wonderful that the Holy Spirit lead the father to know the church as the ‘universal’ church?
Some christians think the word ‘catholic’ is deniagrating from ‘christian’ as if God intended many churches and one of them ‘christan’. But we believe in one God, one Lord, one family/church.