King Saul and the Papacy


#1

Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel: “I am grieved that I have made Saul king, because he has turned away from me and has not carred out my instructions.” 1 Samuel 15:9
What lessons can be learned from the story of King Saul?

It tells me that people are still freewill beings. God made Saul a king, yet Saul disobeyed God to the point where God became grieved that he made Saul king.

Why should I not be skeptical of papal infalibility in light of King Saul? Should I forget or ignore the lessons of the Old Testament?


#2

God’s will was clearly AGAINST the establishment of a monarchy in Israel. Even when he did allow it, he predicted kings who would rule arbitrarily, and not under his perfect plan. (1 Sam 8:1-22) The ministry of St. Peter and his successors on the other hand is established by Christ in accordance to his perfect will (Matt 16:18-20; John 21) to lead the church in faith and morals.

Pray, and let God lead you home
Hugo.


#3

[quote=Angainor][indent]
Why should I not be skeptical of papal infalibility in light of King Saul?
[/quote]

What, exactly, does one have to do with the other?


#4

[quote=adventistnomore]God’s will was clearly AGAINST the establishment of a monarchy in Israel. Even when he did allow it, he predicted kings who would rule arbitrarily, and not under his perfect plan. (1 Sam 8:1-22) The ministry of St. Peter and his successors on the other hand is established by Christ in accordance to his perfect will (Matt 16:18-20; John 21) to lead the church in faith and morals.
[/quote]

I tend to think God is against monarchy in general, because kings can rule arbitrarily. When the Israelites insisted on a king, God did his best to find worthy men, but those men can fail to follow God’s will.

I think it is the same with Catholics. Catholics insist on a spiritual monarchy, so I imagine God does his best to find worthy men, but those men still possess freewill and can also fail to follow God’s will.

I don’t know why people today would be different than the people of the OT.


#5

[quote=Fidelis]What, exactly, does one have to do with the other?
[/quote]

I know God picked Saul to be king, and yet God regretted that decision because Saul did not follow God’s will.

I am asked to trust that God chooses popes, and I am also asked to believe that popes will always teach the correct will of God.

Chosen Saul failed, so why should I have so much trust that a chosen pope will not fail?


#6

[quote=Angainor]Why should I not be skeptical of papal infalibility in light of King Saul? Should I forget or ignore the lessons of the Old Testament?
[/quote]

King Saul was not told “whatever you bind shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose shall be loosed in heaven”.

I think rather than forgetting or ignoring the lessons of the Old Testament you should first understand them better.

Did the lessons of the Old Testament prevent men with free will from writing Scripture without error?


#7

We can, of course, learn lessons from the OT, but we have to be sure that what we are learning is in line with what the author of the writings wanted us to learn not what we think we see in it.

OT typology is not for the casual reader of the Bible. You have to understand a good deal more than you appear to before declaring one thing is like another.

The popes are the Vicar of Christ, an office established by Christ himself, and to which he gave the charism of infallibility, which only means that a pope cannot declare false teaching in matters of faith and morals. Not that whatever he says or does is to be obeyed as if God himself had spoken.

And the papacy is not a monarchy. The popes are elected, as recent events prove only too well. The fact the the office is held until death does not make it a monarchy–which is an hereditary office not an elected one.


#8

A couple of points here…

First, the king of our kingdom is not the pope, but rather Christ. We even have a feast day called Christ the King to remind us of this fact every year. So as far as the monarchy thing goes, you are correct in that it IS a monarchy, but I’d argue that you are incorrect as to WHO that is.

Second, the office of Peter is that of a prime minister. We see in the OT that there was a prime ministry separate from the kingship (Is 22:22). So, a one-to-one comparison is not really appropriate.

Third, since Christ appointed Peter to “tend to His sheep”, gave him “the keys to the kingdom to bind and loose on earth”, and commanded him to “strengthen his brethren [apostles]”, then I’d say the pope has a DUTY to fulfill the ministry given him through the command of Christ.

Fourth, You assume too much in giving the Pope such lordship. The pope cannot bind the Catholic believer to any whim of his 9unlike a mlitary ruler and king can). There is no restriction, no denial of the average man’s free will here. If anything, the pope is the most restricted individual in the whole church. He is bound by the Tradition of the Church.

Fifth, saying that the pope is infallible is not saying that he is not sinful or cannot err in his own spiritual walk. It is a guarantee that he will be protected from teaching error on matters of faith or morals when teaching in an official capacity as visible head of hte church (ex cathedra). So, in saying that King Saul was sinful and prideful, therefore we should not trust a Pope, I’d say “Paul, Luke, Matthew, Mark, and John were all sinful men, yet YOU trust your eternal future to their writings.” You may say, “Well, I believe that the Holy Spirit used these sinful men to teach infallible truths.” I’d then say, “Precisely my point.”

Rich


#9

[quote=VociMike]King Saul was not told “whatever you bind shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose shall be loosed in heaven”.
[/quote]

Neither was Benedict, but that is an old Catholic/Protestant dispute.

[quote=VociMike]Did the lessons of the Old Testament prevent men with free will from writing Scripture without error?
[/quote]

:slight_smile: Yes, that is a very good point.


closed #10

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