Church History


#1

Greetings all,
As requested by many , I have started a new thread. I will do my best to stay on topic here. In one of my prior post (concerning the All-sufficiency of the scriptures) I quoted Augustine’s self correction on Matt. 16:18. The quote was found initially in "Philip Shaff’s ,History of the Christian Church. I was asked to provide the exact Augustine source. After confering with one of my brothers in Christ he located it for me. I provide it here as a starting point to this post.

     Augustine (  430), the greatest theological authority of the Latin church,at first referred the words, ÒOn this rock I will build my church,Ó to the person of Peter, but afterward expressly retracted this interpretation, and considered the petra to be Christ, on the ground of a distinction between petra (ejpi< tau>th| th~| pe>tra|) and Petrus (su< ei+ Pe>trov); a distinction which Jerome also makes, though with the intimation that it is not properly applicable to the Hebrew and Syriac Cephas.f564 ÒI have somewhere said of St. PeterÓ thus Augustine corrects himself in his Retractations at the close of his lifef565ÑÓthat the church is built upon him as the rock; a thought which is sung by many in the verses of St. Ambrose:ÕHoc ipsa petra ecclesiae Canente, culpam diluit.Õf566 (The Rock of the church himself In the cock-crowing atones his guilt.)But I know that I have since frequently said, that the word of the Lord, ÕThou art Petrus, and on this petra I will build my church,Õ must be understood of him, whom Peter confessed as Son of the living God; and Peter, so named after this rock, represents the person of the church, which is founded on this rock and has received the keys of the kingdom of heaven. For it was not said to him: ÕThou art a rockÕ (petra), but, ÕThou art PeterÕ (Petrus); and the rock was Christ, through confession of whom Simon received the name of Peter. Yet the reader may decide which of the two interpretations is the more probable.Ó In the same strain he says, in another place: ÒPeter, in virtue of the primacy of his apostolate, stands,by a figurative generalization, for the church .... When it was said to him, ÕI will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven,Õ &c., he represented the whole church, which in this world is assailed by various temptations,as if by floods and storms, yet does not fall, because it is founded upon a rock, from which Peter received his name. For the rock is not so named 246 from Peter, but Peter from the rock (non enim a Petro petra, sed Petrus a petra), even as Christ is not so called after the Christian, but the Christian after Christ. For the reason why the Lord says, ÕOn this rock I will build my churchÕ is that Peter had said: ÕThou art the Christ, the Son of the living God,Õ On this rock, which then hast confessed, says he will build my church. For Christ was the rock (petra enim erat Christus), upon which also Peter himself was built; for other foundation can no man lay, than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Thus the church, which is built upon Christ, has received from him, in the person of Peter, the keys of heaven; that is, the power of binding and loosing sins.Óf567 

   I found It interesting as well , that St. Jerome and St. Ambrose were mentioned as sharing the same belief. 

Thanks again for your patience,
Robert


#2

Would you please clean that up and repost it when it’s legible? Breaking it into a few separate paragraphs probably won’t hurt either. Thanks.


#3

[quote=Robert Shadwick]Greetings all,
As requested by many , I have started a new thread. I will do my best to stay on topic here. In one of my prior post (concerning the All-sufficiency of the scriptures) I quoted Augustine’s self correction on Matt. 16:18. The quote was found initially in "Philip Shaff’s ,History of the Christian Church.
[/quote]

Well, there’s your problem right there. Why trust a protestant to properly understand what a Catholic Taught??

Here is what Shaff says of Augustine in his book, History of the Christian Church, p. 98 - “(Augustine) is responsible also for many grievous errors of the Roman Church…he anticipated the dogma of the immaculate conception of the Virgin Mary, and his ominous word, Roma locuta est, causa finite est, might almost be quoted in favour of the Vatican decree of papal infallibility.”

I have heard the argument that you are using (Augustine seemingly saying that Peter is not the Rock like we Catholics say he is today) and I have refuted it, but I can’t find my notes. I’ll search and repost later. Suffice to say, Schaff took Augustine’s letter out of context.


#4

Augustine was not steadfast in his interpretation of Matthew 16:18. Above, Augustine equated the rock with Peter’s faith, Peter’s successors, and Peter himself. It was during his controversies with the Manicheans, Donatists, and Pelagians that he emphasized the role of Christ and identified “this rock” with Christ. In his dealings with the Manicheans, the nature of God was in the forefront; with the Donatist, it was the nature of the Church and clergy; with the Pelagians, it was the nature of grace and its originator, Jesus Christ. Augustine equated “this rock” with Christ not to downplay Peter’s primacy, rather to emphasize Jesus Christ. Against all these heresies, Augustine stressed that the Church’s foundation and grace rested upon a divine and not a human person. Nevertheless, Augustine remained steadfast in his understanding of Peter’s primacy and the primacy of the Roman See. Augustine did not reject the Petrine interpretation, in favor of which he cites Ambrose’s hymn, but leaves it to the reader to choose. Simon remains a rock, a secondary rock dependent on the Rock-Christ, for Augustine writes, ‘Peter having been named after this **rock **‘(Retractations 1:21).

Refuting the Augustinian Argument


#5

[quote=Joseph Bilodeau]Would you please clean that up and repost it when it’s legible? Thanks.
[/quote]

It takes a while to know how to post on these forums. The writing is very small, Robert. Could you increase the size of the type? I know its annoying, but it would help read your AUgustine’s words, some of us have bad eyesight…


#6

Robert,

Thank you for sharing this information. Your readers will also want to examine the material found via the following link in order to have a greater understanding of the topic at hand:

catholic.com/library/Peter_the_Rock.asp

I would encourage everyone to pay particular attention to the fact that Paul himself refers to Simon Bar-Jona as “Cephas” on many occasions throughout his epistles.

Christ’s Peace be with you.


#7

While I’m looking here are what the Church Fathers said about Peter as Pope:

catholic.com/library/Origins_of_Peter_as_Pope.asp


#8

Robert,

Why do you keep entertaining Greek language in your mind? The Greek text will certainly make your head spin on the meaning of the word Petros.

Have you read in the Bible when the Lord said; “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani.” The Lord is speaking Aramaic–not Greek. So it is more likely that he said to Peter; “You are Kepha, and upon this Kepha I will build my church…”

And also, why are you focusing on only “one” church father? We have a whole lot of early christian fathers who spoke on the issue of Peter’s primacy.

Clement of Rome
Accept our counsel and you will have nothing to regret. . . . If anyone disobeys the things which have been said by him [Jesus] through us, let them know that they will involve themselves in no small danger. We, however, shall be innocent of this sin and will pray with entreaty and supplication that the Creator of all may keep unharmed the number of his elect (Letter to the Corinthians 58:2, 59:1A.D. 95]).

Ignatius of Antioch
You [the See of Rome] have envied no one, but others have you taught. I desire only that what you have enjoined in your instructions may remain in force (Epistle to the Romans 3:1 A.D. 110]).

Irenaeus
But since it would be too long to enumerate in such a volume as this the succession of all the churches, we shall confound all those who, in whatever manner, whether through self-satisfaction or vainglory, or through blindness and wicked opinion, assemble other than where it is proper, by pointing out here the successions of the bishops of the greatest and most ancient church known to all, founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles. Peter and Paul, that church which has the tradition and the faith which comes down to us after having been announced to men by the apostles. With that church, because of its superior origin, all the churches must agree, that is, all the faithful in the whole world, and it is in her that the faithful everywhere have maintained the apostolic tradition (Against Heresies 3:3:2 [inter **A.D. 180-190]).
Clement of Alexandria
[T]he blessed Peter, the chosen, the preeminent, the first among the disciples, for whom alone with himself the Savior paid the tribute [Matt. 17:27], quickly grasped and understood their meaning. And what does he say? “Behold, we have left all and have followed you” [Matt. 19:2 7, Mark 10:28] (Who is the Rich Man That is Saved? 21:3-5 A.D. 200]).

Tertullian
[T]he Lord said to Peter, “On this rock I will build my Church, I have given you the keys of the kingdom of heaven [and] whatever you shall have bound or loosed on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven” [Matt. 16:18-19]. … Upon you, he says, I will build my Church; and I will give to you the keys, not to the Church; and whatever you shall have bound or you shall have loosed, not what they shall have bound or they shall have loosed (*Modesty *21:9-10 A.D. 220]).

Letter of Clement to James
Be it known to you, my lord, that Simon [Peter], who, for the sake of the true faith, and the most sure foundation of his doctrine, was set apart to be the foundation of the Church, and for this end was by Jesus himself, with his truthful mouth, named Peter, the first-fruits of our Lord, the first of the apostles; to whom first the Father revealed the Son; whom the Christ, with good reason, blessed; the called, and elect (Letter of Clement to James 2 A.D, 221]).

Cyprian
With a false bishop appointed for themselves by heretics, they dare even to set sail and carry letters from schismatics and blasphemers to the Chair of Peter and to the principal church [at Rome], in which sacerdotal unity has its source" (Epistle to Cornelius [Bishop of Rome] 59:14 A.D. 252]).

Pio


#9

My apologies to everyone. Here is the quote again,

Augustine ( 430), the greatest theological authority of the Latin church,

at first referred the words, ÒOn this rock I will build my church,Ó to the

person of Peter, but afterward expressly retracted this interpretation, and

considered the petra to be Christ, on the ground of a distinction between

petra (ejpi< tau>th| th~| pe>tra|) and Petrus (su< ei+ Pe>trov); a distinction

which Jerome also makes, though with the intimation that it is not

properly applicable to the Hebrew and Syriac Cephas.f564 ÒI have

somewhere said of St. PeterÓ thus Augustine corrects himself in his

Retractations at the close of his lifef565ÑÓthat the church is built upon him

as the rock; a thought which is sung by many in the verses of St. Ambrose:

ÕHoc ipsa petra ecclesiae

Canente, culpam diluit.Õf566

(The Rock of the church himself

In the cock-crowing atones his guilt.)

But I know that I have since frequently said, that the word of the Lord,

ÕThou art Petrus, and on this petra I will build my church,Õ must be

understood of him, whom Peter confessed as Son of the living God; and

Peter, so named after this rock, represents the person of the church, which

is founded on this rock and has received the keys of the kingdom of

heaven. For it was not said to him: ÕThou art a rockÕ (petra), but, ÕThou

art PeterÕ (Petrus); and the rock was Christ, through confession of whom

Simon received the name of Peter. Yet the reader may decide which of the

two interpretations is the more probable.Ó In the same strain he says, in

another place: ÒPeter, in virtue of the primacy of his apostolate, stands,

by a figurative generalization, for the church … When it was said to him, ÕI

will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven,Õ &c., he represented

the whole church, which in this world is assailed by various temptations,

as if by floods and storms, yet does not fall, because it is founded upon a

rock, from which Peter received his name. For the rock is not so named

246

from Peter, but Peter from the rock (non enim a Petro petra, sed Petrus a

petra), even as Christ is not so called after the Christian, but the Christian

after Christ. For the reason why the Lord says, ÕOn this rock I will build

my churchÕ is that Peter had said: ÕThou art the Christ, the Son of the

living God,Õ On this rock, which then hast confessed, says he will build

my church. For Christ was the rock (petra enim erat Christus), upon

which also Peter himself was built; for other foundation can no man lay,

than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Thus the church, which is built

upon Christ, has received from him, in the person of Peter, the keys of

heaven; that is, the power of binding and loosing sins.Óf567

Hope that is better.
Robert


#10

This post follows robert’s move from “all-sufficiency of Scripture”.
His declarartion, I assume infallible in interpreting Matt 16:18 as Peter being ONLY a stone:
**Dear Robert,
HERE’S YUR CHANCE TO SHINE!
There are about 47 occurances of stone in the English Bible. Now, tell us from the GREEK Bible, which of those verses use PETROS for stone?
If there are any or many I submit to your scholarship. If not, consider your interpretation as erroneous or at least purely an anti-Catholic bit of ignorant polemics, and never use it with intelligent people again.
Thanks.

Now, I propose to you that you have no idea how many or what books belong in the NT without Church authority in the patristic age. ie OUTSIDE the Scriptures.
However, even if your proposal would hold up, one’s interpretation turns out to be FALLIBLE and therefore can be completely erroneous, thus negating what the bible is teaching. An infallible, sufficient piece or writing has NO guarantee of infallible interpretation.
For example, the early Church baptised infants. ****90% of the reformed prot churches in 1600ad baptised infants. now only 60% of prot sects do.

Finally, you have no proof, in the bible, of who even wrote each book or that it reflects absolutely the original manuscripts which haven’t been available from the earliest times.
Only the ORIGINAL manuscripts were inspired.**


#11

Robert,
What is the significance of God changing someone’s name in scripture?

Why did Jesus Christ change Simon’s name to Cephas?

Peace in Christ…Salmon


#12

Robert quotes Augustine:
Thus the church, which is built upon Christ, has received from him, in the person of Peter, the keys of heaven; that is, **the power of binding and loosing sins

Succinctly,
****the church ****has received ****[size=3]the power of binding and loosing sins.
**1. You admit to the authority of Augustine.
2. You admit that he taught that the CATHOLIC Church (for you also admit Aug. was Catholic) has power to bind and loose sins.

As far as I can tell, The Church, from Christ, through Peter has a power that prot’s say it cannot have!

Q. What church do YOU go to to have your sins examined for binding or loosing them?
Augustine’s Church?

ps. Still waiting for Petros in any of 47 occurrences of “stone”, in the Greek.

[/size]


#13

Hey Folks,
After looking at the various resources presented by some here and from elsewhere , (and of course using what I have already learned prior) I can see that when the church began , every local congregation was an independant unit. There was no super-government of any kind tying these congregations together, or exercising authority over them. There were only two kinds of officers in a congregation-the Elders and Deacons. Every organized congregation had a plurality of each. The Elders were the superior officers, and all of these Elders were on a perfect equality. They were sometimes called pastors or bishops, and were always married men, with believing children
(1 Tim.3:1-13).

              It was several hundred years after New Testament time before there was any such distinction as clergy and laity. All were simply Christians. There were no denominations and all Christians constituted one body and all worshiped together. There were no missionary societies other than the church itself, and contributions for missionary work were sent to the missionaries themselves instead of a board of some kind. Every Christian was a priest (1 Peter 2:5-9) and Christ was the only High Priest. Besides this they had no priest. There were no such things as monasteries in that day among Christians.

   The Apostle Paul teaches in 2 Tim. 3:13-17 ;

“But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, decieving , and being decieved. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures , which are able to make thee wise unto salvation though faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scipture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine , for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness : that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnised unto all good works.”

    As we look at Church history , consider this. The many occurances in the scriptures concerning apostasy, and "falling away" , or as in this passage deceptions , should cause us to ask this question. When did these things occur? Or have they yet to occur? Perhaps from a Roman Catholic viewpoint you may say it occured during the "reformation" period. It is my contention that it was already occuring during the days of the Aposltes. Consider these passages as well;

(Matt. 24:5-12 ;Acts 20:29-30 ; 2 Thess.2 1-12 ; 1 Tim. 4:1-5 ; 2 Tim. 3:1-5 ; 2 Tim. 4:1-5).
And so that I will not be accused of saying anything under my breath , It is my contention that history has proven that the growth of Roman Catholism is that very same apostasy predicted by the Apostles. I say that with all the love in my heart for the Lord Jesus and the souls of all men and women. I have many relatives near and dear to me who are Roman Catholic. Yet I can not turn away from what I can read in the scriptures.
The Churches of Christ salute you,
Robert

Thanks for your patience,
Robert


#14

[quote=Robert Shadwick]And so that I will not be accused of saying anything under my breath , It is my contention that history has proven that the growth of Roman Catholism is that very same apostasy predicted by the Apostles. I say that with all the love in my heart for the Lord Jesus and the souls of all men and women.
[/quote]

How kind of you to call us a Church in apostasy. (with all love in your heart no less!) :rolleyes:

Lots of anti-Catholic bigotry on this forum lately. Seems like satan let the dogs loose. smileys.smileycentral.com/cat/29/29_3_4.gif


#15

Robert, how about the Augustine quote, “Rome has spoken, nothing else needs to be said.”


#16

Robert - I’m afraid your understanding of the place of patristics in apologetics is flawed. You overlook the fact that the Church looks to no individual Father as an infallible authority on all matters. Even Thomas Aquinas, the “Common Doctor” of the Church, was wrong on a point here and there, and so was Augustine

It is my contention that history has proven that the growth of Roman Catholism is that very same apostasy predicted by the Apostles. I say that with all the love in my heart for the Lord Jesus and the souls of all men and women.

With all due respect, your selective use of quotes has not come close to proving anything of the sort.

Sorry, Robert, I could have respected your difference of opinion up to this point. You have gone from honest inquiry, discussion and sharing of information, to condescending bigotry. Farewell.


#17

Maybe I am seeing this too simply. In verse 17 it says Jesus answered and said to him,"**Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is heaven. **Jesus used Simon’s name in a very natural way-nothing odd about that, but look at the next verse. **And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it. **Why would Jesus tell Peter his name again? Did Peter forget who he was? Can you imagine me saying to you…And I say to you, oh by the way your Robert,… The only way to understand the text is the Catholic interpretation. If Jesus wasn’t saying that Peter was the rock on which to build his church, then Jesus though Peter had a serious short term memory loss problem. I’m not trying to be funny-okay, maybe a little- but I honestly don’t mean any disrespect. The text just doesn’t make sense if it is simply Peter’s confession of faith that Jesus is building his church on.


#18

[quote=Robert Shadwick]My apologies to everyone. Here is the quote again,

Augustine ( 430), the greatest theological authority of the Latin church,

at first referred the words, ÒOn this rock I will build my church,Ó to the

person of Peter, but afterward expressly retracted this interpretation, and

considered the petra to be Christ, on the ground of a distinction between

petra (ejpi< tau>th| th~| pe>tra|) and Petrus (su< ei+ Pe>trov); a distinction

which Jerome also makes, though with the intimation that it is not

properly applicable to the Hebrew and Syriac Cephas.f564 ÒI have

somewhere said of St. PeterÓ thus Augustine corrects himself in his

Retractations at the close of his lifef565ÑÓthat the church is built upon him

as the rock; a thought which is sung by many in the verses of St. Ambrose:

ÕHoc ipsa petra ecclesiae

Canente, culpam diluit.Õf566

(The Rock of the church himself

In the cock-crowing atones his guilt.)

But I know that I have since frequently said, that the word of the Lord,

ÕThou art Petrus, and on this petra I will build my church,Õ must be

understood of him, whom Peter confessed as Son of the living God; and

Peter, so named after this rock, represents the person of the church, which

is founded on this rock and has received the keys of the kingdom of

heaven. For it was not said to him: ÕThou art a rockÕ (petra), but, ÕThou

art PeterÕ (Petrus); and the rock was Christ, through confession of whom

Simon received the name of Peter. Yet the reader may decide which of the

two interpretations is the more probable.Ó In the same strain he says, in

another place: ÒPeter, in virtue of the primacy of his apostolate, stands,

by a figurative generalization, for the church … When it was said to him, ÕI

will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven,Õ &c., he represented

the whole church, which in this world is assailed by various temptations,

as if by floods and storms, yet does not fall, because it is founded upon a

rock, from which Peter received his name. For the rock is not so named

246

from Peter, but Peter from the rock (non enim a Petro petra, sed Petrus a

petra), even as Christ is not so called after the Christian, but the Christian

after Christ. For the reason why the Lord says, ÕOn this rock I will build

my churchÕ is that Peter had said: ÕThou art the Christ, the Son of the

living God,Õ On this rock, which then hast confessed, says he will build

my church. For Christ was the rock (petra enim erat Christus), upon

which also Peter himself was built; for other foundation can no man lay,

than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Thus the church, which is built

upon Christ, has received from him, in the person of Peter, the keys of

heaven; that is, the power of binding and loosing sins.Óf567

Hope that is better.
Robert

[/quote]

again the answer is simple
Augustine was not steadfast in his interpretation of Matthew 16:18. Above, Augustine equated the rock with Peter’s faith, Peter’s successors, and Peter himself. It was during his controversies with the Manicheans, Donatists, and Pelagians that he emphasized the role of Christ and identified “this rock” with Christ. In his dealings with the Manicheans, the nature of God was in the forefront; with the Donatist, it was the nature of the Church and clergy; with the Pelagians, it was the nature of grace and its originator, Jesus Christ. Augustine equated “this rock” with Christ not to downplay Peter’s primacy, rather to emphasize Jesus Christ. Against all these heresies, Augustine stressed that the Church’s foundation and grace rested upon a divine and not a human person. Nevertheless, Augustine remained steadfast in his understanding of Peter’s primacy and the primacy of the Roman See. Augustine did not reject the Petrine interpretation, in favor of which he cites Ambrose’s hymn, but leaves it to the reader to choose. Simon remains a rock, a secondary rock dependent on the Rock-Christ, for Augustine writes, ‘Peter having been named after this **rock **‘(Retractations 1:21).


#19

Anyone else think a Protestant giving Catholic Church history is kinda like McClellan giving the history of the Lincoln administration?

The problem for Church poo-pooers is that if a few Early Church Fathers with different ideas about a Church doctrine disprove that doctrine, then the fact that not a single church father before the 300’s AD got all the books belonging in Scripture disproves Sola Scriptura.

Scott


#20

[quote=Robert Shadwick]Hey Folks, As we look at Church history , consider this. The many occurances in the scriptures concerning apostasy, and “falling away” , or as in this passage deceptions , should cause us to ask this question. When did these things occur? Or have they yet to occur? Perhaps from a Roman Catholic viewpoint you may say it occured during the “reformation” period. It is my contention that it was already occuring during the days of the Aposltes. Consider these passages as well;
(Matt. 24:5-12 ;Acts 20:29-30 ; 2 Thess.2 1-12 ; 1 Tim. 4:1-5 ; 2 Tim. 3:1-5 ; 2 Tim. 4:1-5).
And so that I will not be accused of saying anything under my breath , It is my contention that history has proven that the growth of Roman Catholism is that very same apostasy predicted by the Apostles. I say that with all the love in my heart for the Lord Jesus and the souls of all men and women. I have many relatives near and dear to me who are Roman Catholic. Yet I can not turn away from what I can read in the scriptures.

Well…thanks for all that love…LOL :stuck_out_tongue:

Seriously though, you’re just a bit late on this concept. This thread beats this particular horse to death rather nicely.
forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=36068
It’s called “The Great Apostasy: History or Fiction.”

I am going to ask here if you are trying to tell us that the Catholic Church went pagan at the time of Constantine? (Yes, I’ve heard it all before…SSDD)

If this is your contention you need to check your Roman history more closely since only 48 years after Constantine, the pagan emperor Julian the Apostate initiated a persecution of the church again because it wasn’t pagan. There is no unbiased historical record of any such departure from the faith and there certainly would have been since there are records of all the other heresies and apostacies that the church answered.
Pax vobiscum,
[/quote]


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