Ecemunical Council

What would it take to call another ecemunical council , and what would such a council discuss?

Seems like the East and West need to get on the same page about original sin and the atonement before anything else. Those are two really huge things. I would say as big or bigger than the differences Catholics have with Protestants.


1.ok, so would the pope have to call it , or could the partriach of Constantinople , or another Christian leader call one .
2. How would representation from the churches be handled
3.would the oriental churches be invited
4.what in your opinions would be the topics .

Of everyone? Catholics, Orthodox and Protestants? A literal divine miracle.

Pray for it.


This is an interesting question. I’d like to know how various groups define ecumenical council. Besides the question as to who convenes them what powers do such councils have? Are the decisions binding? I am most interested in the understanding of Protestants who accept any prior councils. I think many Evangelicals don’t recognize the authority of councils. They consider them to be at best mere imperfect guides to the faith. But I’d be interested in the Anglican and Lutheran perspectives.

The first question is…

WHY call ecumenical council?

When one has been called, it’s always because there is seen some need.

Perhaps unity?
Certainly, there are numerous groups that would not attend, but for those that would…


Lutherans accept the first four councils as ecemunical :
First council of Nicea
First council of Constantinople
First council of Euphesus
Council of Chalcedon
They are not inspired, nor equal to Scripture , but they are authoritative ,

My proposed list of topics for a fifth ecemunical council :
1.Authority of the bishop of Rome
2.anathemize theological modernism
3.relationship of the churches to each other
4.female bishops
5.marriage of priests , bishops etc

Justification can be agreed upon without a council ( the jddj was a vague compromise as such it doesn’t count)

We already agree that marriage is for a man and woman and things like that.

What about the other three?

And what is the reason for that? Is there anything wrong with the other 3?

I don’t think it’s possible in the sense of an ecumenical council of all the apostolic churches, if that’s what is meant. And that’s because the Russian patriarch would never attend and, since strict (Russian) Orthodoxy denies the authenticity of the Latin church and considers the “patriarchate” of Rome vacant, the Moscow patriarch could, and would, say a truly ecumenical council is impossible until the Pope is replaced by an Orthodox bishop.

My understanding is that Lutherans accept the councils of the Church when it was undivided, so why do Lutherans accept the Council of Chalcedon, when the Church divided because of it’s decrees?

They are not inspired, nor equal to Scripture , but they are authoritative

If a council’s decrees have divine authority, then they are inherently equal to scripture. If they do not, then they are not authoritative. Which begs the question, why call a council, if it’s decrees do not have the same authority as scripture? One could easily reject it’s decrees on the basis of it not being equal to scripture, if one is free to pick and choose what they consider authoritative.

The funny thing is, while you state that a council is not equal to scripture, the very first one became part of scripture.

  1. We accept as ecemunical the four councils not three , we don’t use an undivided clause.
  2. the councils are not inspired , but they are authoritative and ecemunical because they are in line with the scriptures.
    3.could any leader call for one or would it have to be a pope or the leader of the east?

I don’t see what a council accomplishes if a council is only authoritative if it comports with Scripture. Not that I’d expect or consider councils to be at odds with Scripture. But settling matters of dispute is often what the councils are about. The different sides each feel their position is supported from Scripture. If a side can reject the council’s judgments if it doesn’t agree with their understanding of Scripture then councils are nothing more than dialogues.

Well they certainly can’t contradict the scriptures and be authoritative, which is why agreement with the scriptures is the qualification for ecemunical status.

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