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How do Protestants deal with James on faith and works?


#283

I’ve always found the battle over faith vs works to be a battle of strawman arguments.

Protestants believe that if you truely have faith and are saved, there will be ‘works’ that follow. The ‘faith alone’ crowd just consider it secondary and don’t focus on that aspect. I think Catholics imagine them proclaiming faith but not bearing the fruit, in which case they really don’t have faith (and are not saved)

Their strawman for Catholics is a bunch of people without faith but going through the motions and acting like they’ve adopted Christ as their savior.

Personally, I see them as complementary. Works builds faith and visa versa. Even doing works without Faith can help open you up to gaining saving Faith in the future.


#284

Correct, we are bound by apostolic foundation. Not sure i know any churches that are not bound.
The real middle ground of contention lies in the 300 or so successors between the apostles and us.

We have the liberty, even responsibility , to discern just what thread is of and is not off the seamless garment that is from the apostles down to today. This discernment is apostolic, as suggested by your scripture text.


#285

Ok, yet Orthodox have such valid succession, and even some Protestantism (many reformers were Catholic ordained clergy). Beyond that the proof is in the pudding, or “apostolic is as apostolic does”, that is what matters is not so much the physical succession of laying on of hands but of correct doctrine and practice.


#286

Again, you are mixing what is explicit and implicit. Yes apostles were explicitly guided…but just look at “church” as in the congregations in Book of Revelations and the challenges they faced…no hint of infallibility there, but yes on the infallible guiding message going forth from the apostle/angel.

The early fathers do not show equal infallibility , guiding.

Perfect guidance, not being orphaned, must have an understanding that does not put one over the other, as in Catholic s being over Orthodox or over believers in Protestantism. Surely there is a universalism that is common to all believers.


#287

I like it, but proof is in pudding (history), not to “change” one single doctrine, that Holy Spirit can not perfectly guide in other communities on any contested doctrine per CC response, even insisting on possibly adding more (Mary doctrine not complete)


#288

Again, is there wheat and tares in the field ? Was not the wheat perfectly planted ? Did we not start with a perfect garment, but no tares/threads be added, to be discerned? I say we can pull at some threads because indeed some threads can be added by human meddling, while still not doing away with divine thread (though making its effect change, as sin/error does).


#289

Respectfully opinion and confused:thinking::thinking: about what one posted, because within the whole Bible from beginning to end , it seems to state the complete opposite of what you have stated above maybe?

How do Human Beings get to be known and are called>> as being Righteous before Him?

Does God make them or us righteous?

Or does man’s Faith? Believes? Trust in? Works? Deeds? is what makes one a Righteous person in the eyes of God? His presence before the Lord?

“Good for you Abraham, I call that Righteousness” unquote

“Righteousness is not accounted to God,but by ones works” unquote

Book of Rev who is speaking to who judging such?
Ephesus 1:2 I know your works…
Symaran 2:11 Who ever conquers…
Pergamum 2:12 judging their works, eat food sacrifice to idols…
Thyatria 2:19 I know your work…
Sardis 3:1 I know your work…
Philadelphia 3:7 I know your work…
Laddicea 3:15 I know your work…

Luke 1:5-7 " In the days of Herod, King of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah of the priestly division of Abijah; his wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. Both were righteous in the eyes of God, observing all the commandments and ordinance of the Lord blamelessly "

Just a few out of the whole Bible where there are many where God calls others as being righteous men/woman, King David, Noah, list of such,

Opinion only, then there is>>> Abraham, his obedience to, trust in, having a great generosity to others, his huge hospitality given to others, his unselfishness>he lived a life making it not about himself, but about serving the needs of others<<always. Is Abraham, our living example, a life story fully not understood or heard? In ancient times, his family, friends, strangers, Kings must of heard witness his life? Abraham’s life story passed being passed on for generations upon generations who lived after him?> inspiration to do the same in ones life, learning from and how he served, pleased the Lord?

Abraham, being known, by God as being Righteous?

Faith gets us to his door, but knowing Him gets us in, would that be true?

Is Faith a defined spiritual self commitment of the human soul?
Is Faith an Internal personal attitude of the worshiper?
Know thyself?

Did James not say? Show me your faith without works and I will show you my faith by my works? James looks to the life of his ancient forefathers Abraham did he not?

All can say they believe, have faith in him calling out Lord Lord, but what was God’s answer to them? Get away from me, I >>know >> you not, is this correct?
Peace:)


#290

@rose321, I suggest you read my entire post.


#291

The preponderance of the evidence of the fruit of the
battle cries ‘faith alone,’ and ‘Bible alone,’ is enough for me
to know that they are false doctrines.
The Catholic Church didn’t ever teach working your way to Heaven.
.How did Francis of Assisi live and teach at a time of corruption
and bad practice in the Church? His life is an open book.
I won’t get into the other words and deeds of Luther, especially;
nor Calvin or any of the others. Sorry for not making the citation here
of the source, I would need to track in down, but a Protestant
know of Luther’s unromanticized life proclaimed that he was
obviously not a man of God.
Dr. Scott Hahn spoke on the contexts of faith and works in
the Holy Bible. There was a lot of semantics involved during
the rise of Protestantism.


#292

Thank you for your advice will do! Peace:)


#293

Respectfully agree with the call for unity!! Very important
Written: “House divided cannot stand”

Questions and in pondering, :thinking: did Jesus make it clear within Scripture?

Jesus tell us why he was sent and to whom?
Matthew 15:24-25 " I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel"?
Why?

Jesus gives his commission, instruction to the 12?
Matthew 10:5-7 " Jesus sent out theses twelve after instructing them thus, " do not go unto the pagan territory or enter a Samaritan town. Go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel".

Jesus seems to know and where lost house of Israelites are and have been taken too, when conquered?

Knowing Jesus was a Jew, born by Jewish parents, raised in the Judaian Faith, lived by, fully observing the Torah Laws >>Jesus Israelite Jewish yearly>> Holy Feast Days etc, When Jesus came The House of Israel and The House of Judah were split were they not?
Are they still split today and when Jesus left?

God goes into why they split into 2 Houses, within OT does he not?

Thus the prophecy of Jeremiah 31:31-34>days are coming etc. . Has this prophecy been filled yet?

As far as James, those seeking understanding of faith vs works spoken by James, suggestion only maybe they need to go>>> where James ( a Jew) is getting this understanding from, following his teacher Jesus being Jewish> OT?

From which Jesus heavily quotes from OT, refers to continually, throughout his preaching and teaching, maybe?

Thanks seeking understanding Peace :slight_smile:


#294

Beautiful post and greatly enjoyed the read! Thank you!! :slight_smile:


#295

I don’t think so. I think the ground of contention is not trusting that Jesus has done what He promised He would do. There seems to be a belief that fallen human beings are more powerful than God, and can thwart His purpose.

Isaiah 55:11
11 so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

Either God is able and willing to preserve His Word in the Church where He placed it, or he is not.

I think this is why people say that the doctrine of Sola Scriptura has “made everyone their own pope”. Everyone feels they have the right and responsibility to determine for themselves what the Apostles meant by what is written in the Scriptures. And most of the time this happens without ever having read what their disciples wrote and believed. It is as if there were no history of the garment until 1520!

Fortunately the Word of God cannot be sullied by those who fail to adhere to it. Even Jesus instructed the disciples to be obedient to their leaders, for they sat on the Seat of Moses.

On the contrary, the letters in the book of Revelation are evidence of infallibility. THey demonstrate that Jesus can, and does, discipline His Church, guide it, and preserve it in all Truth. This happens despite those who fail to obey. I think you have confused infallibility with impeccability.


#296

I will certainly support that Jesus taught that those in leadership should not “lord it over” the flock. But only Peter was given the responsibility to feed and care for the flock. Jesus only prayed for Peter to be restored, so that He could strengthen his brethren.

The Church cannot add any doctrine. The public revelation was closed at the death of the last Apostle. All that can be added are dogmas, that explain and clarify the once for all divine deposit of faith.

The wheat and the tares are people. The Doctrine is One. The doctrine, once it begins to be unthreaded, continues to ravel until orthodoxy has been lost. Surely you can see this by looking at what has happened with major Protestant bodies in the last 50 years!

The garment was whole, but the discernment has been developing. This has been the work of the councils. Among them has been discerning the books that belonged in the NT, the hypostatic union, Sunday Worship, the Trinity, the Theotokos. These represent our discernment of the once for all divine deposit of faith. The seamless garment must not be unravelled.

You have claimed for yourself the right of discernment over the divine deposit of faith. You are in good company with all the Reformers, who have done the same. Part of the problem comes from hubris, part comes from not being able to discern what is divine revelation, and what is “human meddling”. There is no “human meddling” in the once for all divine deposit of faith. There fore it falls to determine what was in that deposit.

You seem to believe that human error can somehow sully the immutable Word of God.


#297

Cherry pickin…plenty of scriptures to show conditionality


#298

so is the promise of guidance, to people


#299

With individuals, yes, but none that say Jesus will abandon His Church if certain members are faithless. Even the harsh messages of the Letters in Revelation do not go there. In the New Covenant, the Spirit is within, and the Church is incarnational, like Christ. The divine cannot be separated from the human.

This is where the redefinition of Church coined at the Reformation makes the critical difference. The Church is more than the “body of believers on earth”. She is the Holy Bride of Christ, and she is above and beyond any number of fallible persons attached to her. The promise is made to the Body. Individuals can benefit from this guidance to the extent they remain in unity with the Head and the Soul of the Church. Those who do not accept and follow the guidance are not protected by infallibility.


#300

How long does uninpeccability have to go one before infallibility shows up ? A month, a year , a decade, a century or two?

We agree to error, even doctrinal writ says, and we agree to discipline, correction from the Lord thru the apostle…we perhaps may agree that some reformed and some did not, some churches remain some do not…we may perhaps agree that the time of error,even doctrinal, may have at most 3,4 decades, between church founding(60 ad) and letter around (100 ad).

So to my question, at what point does unimpeccable become fallible? After all, as long as things get corrected, right?
Of course these were only 7 congregations, and it was an apostle doing the correcting.

Yet one can always wonder if reformers are of God, be they Orthodox or Protestant or Catholic.

One can try and say that it doesnt matter if God let a church err for hundreds of years or more, as long as the reformer is eventually heeded.


#301

I think you are confused. The reason that the Church needs the gift of infallibility is because we are all fallen sinners. The gift of God is not based upon our human weakness and failings. It is based on His grace alone. We can never “earn” His gifts by 'behaving well".

Jesus has never failed in His promise to lead the Church into “all Truth”. No matter how many individuals have spurned His grace or fallen into carnal lifestyles, He has preserved that once for all Divine Deposit of Truth.

Yes and no. For Catholics, there is only One Church. All the local bodies are members of the One Body of Christ. We may agree that Jesus has purged/destroyed the errors, such as stamping out the heresies of Gnosticism and Arianism.

This is a reflection of how we see the Church differently. CAtholics see Jesus as the Head of the Church. In the letters of Revelation, we see Jesus speaking to correct the congregations (not “an apostle”). Like the rest of inspired Scripture, we consider that it is the Word of God, not the word of the fallible persons who wrote it.

We believe that Jesus has not become ill or disinterested, and He has continued His powerful presence to bring the Church into holiness.

We know that Reformers are of God if they obey the authority He has appointed, whether they are out of order, or not. Scriptures call us to be obedient to our leaders,and He will bless the Church far above and beyond the sinfulness or carnal behaviors of those who are attached to her. God can write straight with crooked lines.


#302

Yes and no…the yes we all too well understand, the no is more difficult.

We are not to obey leaders if what they decree is error, like the Pharisees (beware of their leaven, which is doctrine).We also know the apostles did not always obey the God ordained Jewish leaders (the church was first Jewish).Thirdly, what do you do when your elers or bishops are the reformers themselves? Do you disobey them to heed a bishop from a different congregation (such was the case in when to celebrate Easter)? Fourthly, what do you do when a practice /doctrine is not apostolic,or even clearly a tradition, not having any unanimous consent? Fourthly, what if the desired reform itself is dealing with the heirarchy of the church itself, such as the office of head bishop (pope) or patriarchs or councils…who has the last say, etc…


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