How do you answer this?


#1

from another thread

"What proof do you have that all these churches recognized that they were part of one church? If they were, why was it necessary for God to have to have messages sent to them all individually? Wouldn’t one have sufficed?

You know the ECF taught that the bishop was head of the church and the next one to Christ. They did not teach that another bishop was over all the churches. That fabrication came much later.

Revelation should prove that there were multiple churches, instead you attempt to refute it with no proof."

Isn’t Scripture enough?

Matthew 16:18
18"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.

How many churches?

John 10:16
16"I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become **one flock with one shepherd. **

How many flocks and how many shepherds?

John 17:11
11"I am no longer in the world; and yet they themselves are in the world, and I come to You Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be **one even as We are. **

John 17:21

21that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.

John 17:23
23I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.

Ephesians 4:3-5
3being diligent to preserve the **unity **of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

4There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in **one hope **of your calling;

5one Lord, one faith, one baptism,

Ephesians 5:25
25Husbands, love your wives, just as **Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, **

How many brides does Jesus have?

Ephesians 5:30
30because we are members of His body.

Romans 12:4-5
4For just as we have many members in **one body **and all the members do not have the same function,

5so we, who are many, are **one body **in Christ, and individually members one of another.

How many bodies?

Philippians 1:27
27Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

Philippians 2:2
2make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

Colossians 1:18
18He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.

How many heads?

Think of it like this …

There are many 7/11’s (Catholic Churches)

Each managed by different managers (bishops), with one employee handbook (Bible) ,written by and for the store (Church), in different languages (translations).

But they all are still the same 7/11 (Catholic Church) with the same employee handbook (Bible) that guides each store (Church) owned by one ultimate boss (God) who sent His Son (Jesus) to put the vice president (St. Peter) in charge of advertisement (preaching the Gospel).


#2

I don’t even know what this person is talking about in any of these 3 paragraphs! What “individual” messages? What “no proof”?


#3

The letters written to the 7 churches in Revelation were addressed to 7 “dioceces”, if you will - not 7 separate Churches.

There was no television or e-mail where they could receive a memo so that they could be addressed universally.
The problem with people who argue that there were many separate churches at the beginning of Christianity is that they try to apply the logistics of today to ancient times. This is a weak argument, given the writings of the early Church Fathers and the passages in Scripture that we are to remain “ONE faith, ONE baptism, ONE lord over all” and to follow the traditions of the apostles as one Church.

My Catholic church (parish) and your Catholic church (parish) are in different places but we belong to the same “Church” (capital C).


#4

How bout such as this;

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 [A.D. 189]).

Ignatius of Antioch

“Ignatius . . . to the church also which holds the presidency, in the location of the country of the Romans, worthy of God, worthy of honor, worthy of blessing, worthy of praise, worthy of success, worthy of sanctification, and, because you hold the presidency in love, named after Christ and named after the Father” (Letter to the Romans 1:1 [A.D. 110]).

Ask him if it appears to him that Clement exercised authority over the whole Church in th 80’s.


#5

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.