Curious Argument showing the Infallibility of the Church

First of all I’d like to apologize by my english cause i dont speak english very well ;p

Hello everyone i was thinking nowadays about the First Council of Nicea, and I was thinking that it was a good argument how the Church is conducted by the Holy Spirit.

In the first council of Nicea the bishops were voting about the true nature of Jesus against the position of Arius, that Jesus was not true God, and he was created by God the Father.

The bishops had a heaten discussions and it ended up that 300 votes in favor that Jesus was true God and coeternal with the father and 2 votes that he was not, and he was created by God the father. And the following results the 2 bishops were excommuniated, and were exhilated by Constantine.

Now I was thinking, have you ever thought if just that election got wrong? I mean, if someone paid to corrupt the bishops and they ended up in a votation in favor that Jesus was not God? The Holy Church would fall down just in a Council! Something wrong would be made and the gates of Hell would have prevailed and the Church would have something wrong as a dogma forever.

Now, I don’t know if I am crazy, but it’s interesting because i think everybody should have this argument in its own kit, that the church has remained coherent and infallible during all this centuries in midst of so many problems, corruption inside the church and so on, never was in danger of having something wrong as a dogma.

I mean, Oh my God, if something got wrong in that Council and they defined as a dogma that Jesus was not God, the church would have fallen down in the beggining and we don’t know what would have happened

Just imagine if something got wrong in that voting, Anyone would agree with me on that? Any comments? Thank you!

Yes, that Council bears great witness for the authority of the Church. Next time a protestant says that Jesus is God, tell him, “That sure is mighty Catholic of you!” I love saying that.

It couldn’t have gone wrong because God is all powerful and He would have intervened in some way to prevent His Church from officially proclaiming something erroneous. We know that because He promised it when He told Peter: Mt.16:18 “*And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.”

*Note that the promise is that the the powers of death/hell (lies) would not prevail against “it” – Jesus’ church. As long as Jesus’ church exists, His promise of it’s protection holds. (The primary means established by God to carry out this protection is the office of the papacy – by establishing an office of the keys, the papacy.)

Sometimes I’ve come across people who accept Our Lord’s words in this passage from Matthew, but say they only applied to Peter ---- that the gift of infallibility and authority was in effect only as long as Peter was alive. But Jesus didn’t say the powers of death shall not prevail against “you” (Peter), He said they would not prevail against “it” (His Church). Our Lord’s Church did not disappear and cease to exist when Peter was martyred!

By the way, I think you did very well with your English. :thumbsup:

devonsams said **: "i was thinking … about the First Council of Nicea, and … that it was a good argument how the Church is conducted by the Holy Spirit.
In the first council of Nicea, the bishops were voting about the true nature of Jesus…

The bishops had heated discussions, and it ended up that 300 votes in favor that Jesus was true God and coeternal with the Father, and 2 votes that he was not, and he was created by God the Father…
have you ever thought if just that election got wrong? I mean, if someone paid to corrupt the bishops …[to vote] in favor that Jesus was not God?

The Holy Church would fall down just in a Council!
Something wrong would be made and the gates of Hell would have prevailed and the Church would have something wrong as a dogma forever."**

WOW ! … you can REALLY crank-up a Conspiracy Theory.
Your Theory : the ENTIRE Catholic Church would collapse if a group of Bishops made a Wrong Decision.
Well, they HAVE MADE a slew of Bad Decisions over the Millennia … BUT, the Catholic Church remains intact.

If someone “bribed” the Bishops to vote a certain way (in a certain Election of Doctrinal Faith), then the Obvious answer is … some time later, other Bishops (or, the same Bishops) would re-Vote, and this Time, vote with their Hearts and NOT their Pocketbooks.

And, he said** : “i think everybody should have this argument in its own kit, that the [Catholic] church has remained coherent and infallible during all these centuries in midst of so many problems … [BUT] never was in danger of having something wrong as a dogma.”**

I don’t agree with your assessment.
Therefore, I think it would a Bad idea to place this into my “kit.”

And,** “I mean, Oh my God, if something got wrong in that Council …the [ENTIRE Catholic] church would have fallen down in the beginning …”**

This is an AMAZING Leap … from the Catholic Church being infallible … to the argument that the Catholic Church would cease to exist, if it made a mistake.

And, finally,** “Just imagine if something got wrong in that voting, Anyone would agree with me on that? Any comments?”**

I think you are DEAD Wrong.
I think you have a very SMALL Opinion of the Catholic Church in general, and are “selling” an argument that is full of Holes, and reeks of Reverse-Apologetics.
STUFF happens.
It also happens inside the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.
But, Jesus Christ is BIGGER than all of us mere Mortals.
He planned for the Catholic Church to exist Today.
Since this is so, NOTHING that any MAN can do will Destroy the Catholic Church.
And so, nothing that a Bishop (or, group of Bishops) did 100s of years ago, could have Destroyed the Catholic Church.

Well, I’m gonna play right into your hands and cheese-off a whole lot of people by saying:

It would not matter.

I say that because I know something that a whole lot of Catholics do NOT know: An Ecumenical Council MAY teach infallibly, but is not assured of always doing so.

In a similar fashion, a Pope MAY teach infallibly, but he is not assured of always doing so. It depends on the circumstance in both cases.

There are a great number of faithful Catholics who subscribe to the strange notion that an Ecumenical Council is infallible. It MIGHT be so.

If an Ecumenical Council defines something pertaining to Faith and Morals, and that council/definition is ratified by the Pope ex cathedra, then it is infallible. If a pope declares/defines something pertaining to Faith and Morals, ex cathedra, it is infallible.

So, to move back to the OP’s question, let’s ammend it slightly.

If the First Council of Nicea defined by vote that Jesus Christ was created by God, and the full documents of that Council were ratified by the ruling Pope ex cathedra, then the Church would have defined something that is false as true, making it fallible. That the Church did not, and never has done this, proves its infallibility.

While the argument is not valid, that is the conclusion doesn’t follow from the premises, it’s still a line of reasoning that is good to contemplate. So, no, the premises do not prove the conclusion, but for us Catholics who hold to the doctrine of infallibility, it’s a beautiful thing to ponder that throughout history God has protected His Church from error.

Thank you, devonsams, for this efficacious thought.

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