Is denominationalism an obviously bad thing according to (most) Protestants?


#42

Again presumptions are made as to just how the Church was ruled jurisdictionally (episcopal, presbytery models etc.).

Presumptions are made as to just what the gates of hell mean, what is persevering (does it mean never teaching a single error for even a second?)

Yes Satan is a roaring lion seeking whom to devour, but Christ is the Good Shepherd along with the Paraclete


#43

Agree, like He told the Samaritan women at the well, worshipping will not be limited to a place anymore, and the Father prefers worship in truth and spirit, and the love for one another will be a trademark to the world.

The question is what did he mean by Catholic then , beyond universal, and as applied against the heresies of his day. I am thinking of how the eastern patriarchs related to patriarch of Rome jurisdictionally (beyond the primacy in honor). Was it a heresy yet to think otherwise…that is to what point was the east “Orthodox” yet still Catholic during Augustine writings? Or was this still a sleeping divide ?

For sure, for appointed bishops of that time were very close to apostlically being appointed if not actually appointed by them, as Clement was.

Well isn’t it one example of the visible church in action? Not sure because there are other examples we nix the one ???

I would think P reformorers and their SS would not toss out the scriptural norm that is set in Acts.

Now it seems we are back to an old paradigm we discussed about the women at the well. Are we back to pointing to Jerusalem or that sacred mountain in Samaria? Christ first wants us to hunger for truth and spirit, and obviously from within the Body, and be careful not to be sectarian, for Christ was not. For sure separate from heresy (gnostics, Arians), as the name Catholic signified at first, but not to separate true brethren as with Orthodox and P’s.

Again, Judaism had similar divisions, yet Christ did not weigh in save by being non sectarian, and saying ,“Salvation is of the Jews”

By the way, not sure it helps to tell those who have a different view of the same evidence, that they have ignored evidence altogether. We may ignore your interpretation of the evidence, but we do not ignore the evidence.


#44

Protestants also believe it is possible for people to identify the church. We just have different criteria.

Yes, the visible church has authority to discipline and excommunicate people. Protestants do not deny this. What we deny is that exclusion or inclusion within the visible church always and in every case means that one is excluded from or included in the invisible church.

The Council of Jerusalem was based on apostolic authority. The apostles were specifically commissioned by Christ, so it would be odd for Christians who learned of Christ from the apostles to reject the authority of the apostles.

When speaking of later councils, a Protestant would say that a council’s authority comes from whether their teaching adheres to scripture. It’s not about who the members of the council are, but about what the council is saying. Is it speaking something that can be proven true by scripture?

We are told that the sheep know the voice of their shepherd.


#45

Yes, if you take the Chick/ Carm approach.

Pretty sure does not qualify for the normal understanding of idolotry ( an image and of or to a false god). So we, you, definetly have the right God, Jesus, and the image or representative element (s) He Himself chose for His remebrance (bread and wine). Just not sure you are doing what He said in “Do this”, as far as adoring or creating His presence, as in OT holy of holiest or the Ark of covenant…we are to eat and drink the consecrated bread and wine in remembrance ( not as ordinary bread and wine but not as transubstantiated either).

It would be one thing for believers to have communion together allowing for a few different convictions on just how it is His body, but it is another thing to then have different convictions on how or thru whom it gets to be His body, and what we do with the elements beyond eating Him in remembrance.


#46

Lol…indeed we all know eveybodies diversity, the visible boundaries that truth lays out per our church conviction


#47

Everything?, no, but on matters of faith i certainly do. Otherwise you sound like Pontius Pilate and what you have is a never ending circular question as to what you “do have” as truth.

Please see - 1Tim 2:3-4 and Jn 16:12-13

I dont think you understand the Catholic teaching on this so called “monopoly”. The Catholic church clearly teaches truth is found in many places not just the church. - CCC 819

Peace!!!


#48

Where did you get that?

I never said you weren’t Christian.

But these two beliefs are complete opposite: Symbolic Eucharist vs. Substantial Presence of Jesus that can be adored as God.

I’m not sure how else I can illustrate the significance of two so very different understandings of arguably the chief ritual Christ told his followers to do in perpetuity.

Whichever Christian is wrong here is VERY, VERY wrong.

This is not a matter of legitimate diversity but contradiction. It’s not a matter of preference, like liturgy or spirituality. It’s about a fundamental basis of the Christian Faith — that very ritual that has been the center of church communion (membership in the church) from the very beginning. Ignatius and early Christians were adamant that setting up another altar — another Eucharist – outside of the bishop was schism, and against Christ.

And why? Because the Church was a visible society of communion with Christ from the beginning.


#49

Again presumptions are made as to just how the Church was ruled jurisdictionally (episcopal, presbytery models etc.).

Well, the issue is even more fundamental then that.

I’m talking about the nature of the Church itself as that visible society that operates as the “pillar of truth” and can make legitimate decisions for Christianity as a global entity. Such as the Church really did in Acts 15.

This is what I mean when I say, for a Catholic (and i believe the early Church), communion with Christ’s Church meant communion with the visible society He established — with the apostles and their successors as leaders, and Peter as the chief steward and representative of this union. This is precisely what the “keys” language means: Authority over the household of God.

Scripture can interpret Scripture here, for Jesus’ words in Matthew 16:18-19 are most definitely a harkening back to Isaiah 22:22, which uses the same “key” language, including “binding and loosing” (or “opening” and “shutting” in Isaiah). In the Davidic Household, the chief steward held the keys. Now Peter receives this authority in Christ’s Kingdom, the heir to the Davidic Kingdom.


#50

The question is what did he mean by Catholic then , beyond universal, and as applied against the heresies of his day. I am thinking of how the eastern patriarchs related to patriarch of Rome jurisdictionally (beyond the primacy in honor). Was it a heresy yet to think otherwise…that is to what point was the east “Orthodox” yet still Catholic during Augustine writings? Or was this still a sleeping divide ?

Even that short snippet gives the context: Augustine is saying that the Church is not merely any entity that professes Christ, but a visible and identifiable one throughout the world. Augustine was obviously a Catholic, but this conversation is more fundamental to even the Orthodox vs. Catholic conception of the Church, for both have similar understandings.


#51

Well isn’t it one example of the visible church in action? Not sure because there are other examples we nix the one ???

“One example” as in there is not an inherent Protestant reason, on the basis of their general understanding of the visible church, that we should accept this council as binding – as opposed to maybe another first century decision by another visible body.

In other words, Protestants don’t think the Catholic Church or the Methodist Church or the Lutheran Church or any individual body can make universal decisions for the one Church, because they do not see the visible church in this manner. But I think that is in conflict with the New Testament model, where everyone knew that there was a genuine structure that ensured catholic (universal) communion: Peter and his associates gathered to make decisions.


#52

Christ first wants us to hunger for truth and spirit, and obviously from within the Body, and be careful not to be sectarian, for Christ was not.

Christ was not sectarian because He saw himself as the fulfillment of all that came before: He was gathering a new people. His orders were to join his movement. And how do we know what this movement entails? That’s the point. That’s what I’m saying: It’s reasonable to expect a visible society — a concrete people that can point to Christ and his teaching.

Even the Bible presupposes a visible society with genuine authority to preserve and declare which books are genuinely of God and which are counterfeits. Just as the Church did in Acts 15 when it declared which view of the Gentiles was genuine and which was counterfeit.

And so is needed in every age…

As you say, Truth matters. But the Protestant paradigm doesn’t really lead to one Truth. It leads to either to the symbolic Eucharist of the Baptists, or the semi-real presence of the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), or the substantial presence of Christ as told by the Lutherans, or as professed in the Catholic Church, etc. Did Christ want us out of this messy circle? I believe he did, and I believe we have solid biblical and historical evidence. Again, even the Bible itself as a catholic “universal” doctrine prepossess a Church that can make a catholic “universal” decision.


#53

When speaking of later councils, a Protestant would say that a council’s authority comes from whether their teaching adheres to scripture. It’s not about who the members of the council are, but about what the council is saying. Is it speaking something that can be proven true by scripture?

Scripture itself presupposes a Church that can operate today just as it did in Acts 15. For the New Testament canon (in particular) is a “catholic” (universal) decision that can only be made if a Church has such catholic authority.

That this authority left with the Apostles is just an arbitrary assertion, itself a tradition of men. The early Church knew otherwise: That the authority in the church passed on in succession.

@ltwin With regards to your comments on the visible church and excommunication, the Catholic would agree. After all, even non-Catholic Christians are part of the Body of Christ, if they have been baptized (or at least receive grace in ways only known to God).

That’s not the issue. The issue is whether or not Christ intended a certain visible society to be the go-to source for Christ’s teaching and full means of sanctification.


#54

According to you and your tradition, yes. :wink:


#55

As to a more precise context I would need the text that the sentence came from. Otherwise it could be that church was no longer specific enough, that if you asked someone where the church is, they may well send you to a Gnostic church, or a Manichaen church. So obviously other churches seem to have been just as visible. But the Catholic church was the universal Christian church, so better be specific on which church you ask for, to stay away from false sects and false religions.

Another words the context is not visibility, for all were, but the truth and spirit that resides in the church, the right church.

Just going by your one Augustinian quote/ sentence though.


#56

Again, many church forms of governance see the Jerusalem council justifying their “model”, including Catholics. We also have different views then of the keys, binding etc, yet all agree that Peter did bind and have keys.

But for sure the church was quite visible, and loosed and bound at that council. Exactly like Jesus said, that first take a concern/ wrongdoing to the effecting brother, if that does not solve or loose and bind, take two or three brothers with you, and finally if that doesn’t work take it to the church.


#57

All my life I’ve tried to be faithful to God and I did this by trying to put my faith in His Word, doing His will, and obeying His commandments. In many occasions, I fell short and did things contrary to what He wanted me to do. I NEVER justified my wrongful actions as being right. I was wrong and He was right everytime so I strove to always better my self with God’s grace to do His will. I was taught God’s will through the Catholic Church (I am Byzantine Catholic). I will NEVER question the validity of the Catholic Church as being THE CHURCH that Christ created on Earth (having said that though I include the Orthodox Churches in this group). ALL other denominations are heretical. If you don’t believe the Bread and Wine are consecrated to become the true Body and true Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ then instead of protesting it read or listening to people who know that It truly is that and do God’s will. Jesus prayed that His Church would remain as one. We are useless to Him in spreading the faith if we are divided and the world sees us like that.

If you truly believe in God, pray for our unity as Christians and stop letting your pride get in the way. Yes, there are many bad things in the Catholic Church today but instead of leaving it and protesting against it, work within the Church to weed out the bad things and make it better. There are so many faithful Protestants who could improve the Catholic Church with their devotion to Christ.

This may sound crazy but I truly believe the freedom we attained through our US Constitution has given people of God this false belief that they can change God’s Beliefs to suit there own beliefs and still be considered a Christian. As I have read and heard many times, Christianity is not a democracy. Jesus set forth guidelines and the Catholic Church follows those guidelines - there is no changing them.


#58

No, your observation is not crazy, and i have heard that expressed before on CAF. But here is the other thing that is of concern, folks that are in a church that are in main stream of theology that also think themselves to be Christian but are not.

This is no new problem. Nicodemus is a good biblical example. He was a good Jew. He was not in any fringe sect of Judaism. He did all the things a good Jew would do according to God’s commands (circumcised, bar mitzvah, became a rabbi even learned in God’s word and tradition). He was in the right religion, doing all the right stuff, but yet blind as a bat spiritually speaking. He was not born again, born of the spirit.

In my opinion, two of the hardest people to really convert are folks born and raised Baptist and those born and raised Catholic. The baptist because he grew up hearing the gospel all his life, may have even been baptized, but with no change as comes with regeneration The Catholic because he too is been around the church his whole life, but is taught that his baptism and confirmation granted him regeneration. Both the Baptists and Catholic did what they were taught is dutiful unto spiritual life, as mandated by God, just like Nicodemus. Yet we know what was said of Nicodemus, and I say the same could be said of some in any denomination, in any church.

Finally, by God’s grace some of these folks do come around . The individual who went thru this spiritual transformation will testify of it using language they are familiar with. Many will say they were born again. Some will be restricted ( by their church teaching on automatic baptismal regeneration) and say they had an experience in Jesus Christ like never before , and that all things become new, and they have a fire in their belly for Jesus. I say this specifically about a Catholic testimony I heard on Catholic radio. To me it sure sounded like he became born again.

So thank you for your post, and for being very frank on your conviction on Real Presence, and what it means to believe otherwise. I feel the same way about having everyone make sure they are born again, to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that one is His child, and the fire it puts in us knowing that.

Blessings


#59

We are One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. When we worship, when we pray, when we do God’s will on Earth, we do it as One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Yes, each parishioner may be at a different walk in their spiritual journey but we are all (suppose to be) heading in the same direction and that is to be with Our Lord in Heaven. Jesus is the cornerstone which the Church was started. He gave us guidelines (sacraments) to follow. He assign Peter and the other Apostles to carry on Jesus’ Church to bound and loose what they felt was needed to get people to follow Christ. Before they died, they laid hands on their successors - this is the apostolic succession. You break from the succession, you break from the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. The gates of Hell were not suppose to prevail against this Church but who is to say about these other churches started by fallible men? Stop the division of God’s people, lets show the world there is a God and become One - all of us Christians.


#60

As I said, God’s love and grace is strong enough to take care of our “wrongness” about this and any other doctrine. We are not saved by being right about doctrine. We are saved because of God’s grace and gift of eternal life to us. We are saved because we are united with Christ by the indwelling Holy Spirit. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t seek to understand the things of God but it also doesn’t mean that even we don’t understand (or don’t understand correctly) that God disowns us or takes His grace and love away from us.


#61

You can’t talk about the Scripture readings your heard? Or the other propers? For Catholics (and other liturgical Christians), Christ speaks to us through the sacred texts the Church gives us.
Of course many priests are excellent homilists…others less so.


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