Studying the early Church in World History. Help me with these few things


#1

Ok, we have started learning about the early “Christian” church, which I must say, is SOOOOOOO Catholic, it is amazing to me. But I have something that kinda troubles me in my textbook. It says the following:

By the 4th century*, the Christian Church had developed a system of organization… Over time, one bishop-the bishop of Rome-began to claim that he was the leader of what was now called the Roman Catholic Church.*

So does this mean that there was no pope before the fourth century. Or was there, and they wern’t just called “Pope”.

Another thing that has been bothering me, is the schism of the Eastern Orthadox church, and the Catholic Church. It says the following:

The Eastern Orthadox Church was unwilling to except the pope’s claim that he was the sole head of the Christian faith.

If there really was a pope before the 4th century, or since the begginig of Christianity (Peter), I think that they wouldv’e realized it at not had a problem.

Also another thing that is bothering me is how cocky the early Popes seemed. For example, I have just read about the struggle between Pope Boniface VIII and King Philip IV of France. My book says the following:

To gain new revenues, Philip said that he had the right to tax the Clergy of France. Boniface VIII claimed that the clerefy could not pay taxes to their ruler without the Popes Consent. **He argued that popes were surpreme over both Church and State. **

Seams to me like that he was abusing his power here.

Cont on next post…


#2

One more thing (Sorry everyone, I might seem like a pest, but i really need answers.)

During the Crusades, Urban II said the following

"All who die… whether by land or sea, or in battle against pegans, shall have immediate remmision of sins…:

That to me seams like an abuse of power, it seames like one of those “General Absolution” things many Protestant denominations do. So does the pope have the authority to do that.

I know, but i think im starting to question the authority of the Pope.


#3

[quote=RomanRyan1088]Ok, we have started learning about the early “Christian” church, which I must say, is SOOOOOOO Catholic, it is amazing to me. But I have something that kinda troubles me in my textbook. It says the following:

By the 4th century*, the Christian Church had developed a system of organization… Over time, one bishop-the bishop of Rome-began to claim that he was the leader of what was now called the Roman Catholic Church.*

So does this mean that there was no pope before the fourth century. Or was there, and they wern’t just called “Pope”.
[/quote]

Ok First off the Church was NOT refered to as ROMAN Catholic until the Reformation period. It was called the Catholic Church. Or just The Church. Second. The Church, as an organization did infact develop over time but the Bishop in Rome always held the place of Primacy. At the end of the 1st and beggining of the 2nd century, the Roman Church held what they called the “Presidency”. Yes that right, they used the word President. ““Ignatius . . . to the church also which holds the presidency, in the location of the country of the Romans,””(*Letter to the Romans *1:1 [A.D. 110]).

Another thing that has been bothering me, is the schism of the Eastern Orthadox church, and the Catholic Church. It says the following:

The Eastern Orthadox Church was unwilling to except the pope’s claim that he was the sole head of the Christian faith.

If there really was a pope before the 4th century, or since the begginig of Christianity (Peter), I think that they wouldv’e realized it at not had a problem.

During the early councils the eastern churhes did honor the Roman Bishop as having the Primacy. The Schism was as politically motivated as it was one of Doctrine and they have since REJECTED the Popes authority.

Also another thing that is bothering me is how cocky the early Popes seemed. For example, I have just read about the struggle between Pope Boniface VIII and King Philip IV of France. My book says the following:

To gain new revenues, Philip said that he had the right to tax the Clergy of France. Boniface VIII claimed that the clerefy could not pay taxes to their ruler without the Popes Consent. **He argued that popes were surpreme over both Church and State. **

Seams to me like that he was abusing his power here.

Cont on next post…

Well Boniface was absolutly correct. The Pope does not answer to any secular authority. The Church IS above the State and the Pope is the visible head of the Church.


#4

[quote=RomanRyan1088]"All who die… whether by land or sea, or in battle against pegans, shall have immediate remmision of sins…:

That to me seams like an abuse of power, it seames like one of those “General Absolution” things many Protestant denominations do. So does the pope have the authority to do that.
[/quote]

Interesting question. Since the Pope did it, I would assume he had the authority to do so. Certainly the Pope has the authority to bind or loose sins as he sees fit; however, I thought that the Sacrament of Reconciliation requires the physical presence of the person being absolved.

An analogous question would be could the Pope consecrate invalid matter for the Eucharist. I would think not. So there are certain divine rules for the Sacraments that even the Pope cannot break.


#5

[quote=RomanRyan1088]One more thing (Sorry everyone, I might seem like a pest, but i really need answers.)

During the Crusades, Urban II said the following

"All who die… whether by land or sea, or in battle against pegans, shall have immediate remmision of sins…:

That to me seams like an abuse of power, it seames like one of those “General Absolution” things many Protestant denominations do. So does the pope have the authority to do that.

I know, but i think im starting to question the authority of the Pope.
[/quote]

It is completely within the Popes authority to grant an Indulgence of that kind.

And what he said was…
""The noble race of Franks must come to the aid their fellow Christians in the East. The infidel Turks are advancing into the heart of Eastern Christendom; Christians are being oppressed and attacked; churches and holy places are being defiled. Jerusalem is groaning under the Saracen yoke. The Holy Sepulchre is in Moslem hands and has been turned into a mosque. Pilgrims are harassed and even prevented from access to the Holy Land.

The West must march to the defense of the East. All should go, rich and poor alike. The Franks must stop their internal wars and squabbles. Let them go instead against the infidel and fight a righteous war.

God himself would lead them, for they would be doing His work. There will be absolution and remission of sins for all who die in the service of Christ. Here they are poor and miserable sinners; there they will be rich and happy. Let none hesitate; they must march next summer. God wills it! “”

Dying in the service of CHRIST is the key here. Those who died in the shamefull sack of Constantinople probobly did NOT receive the indulgence because the usual condition for recieving an indulgence applied.


#6

[quote=metal1633]Ok First off the Church was NOT refered to as ROMAN Catholic until the Reformation period. It was called the Catholic Church. Or just The Church. Second. The Church, as an organization did infact develop over time but the Bishop in Rome always held the place of Primacy. At the end of the 1st and beggining of the 2nd century, the Roman Church held what they called the “Presidency”. Yes that right, they used the word President. ““Ignatius . . . to the church also which holds the presidency, in the location of the country of the Romans,””(*Letter to the Romans *1:1 [A.D. 110]).

My book says ROMAN catholic. I knew the book made a mistake here. It defines the pope as the head of the ROMAN Catholic Church. I think i sould comment on this.

During the early councils the eastern churhes did honor the Roman Bishop as having the Primacy. The Schism was as politically motivated as it was one of Doctrine and they have since REJECTED the Popes authority.

Thank You, this clears alot of things up.

Well Boniface was absolutly correct. The Pope does not answer to any secular authority. The Church IS above the State and the Pope is the visible head of the Church.
[/quote]

So he was correct in doing this, i totally agree then.


#7

[quote=metal1633]It is completely within the Popes authority to grant an Indulgence of that kind.

And what he said was…
""The noble race of Franks must come to the aid their fellow Christians in the East. The infidel Turks are advancing into the heart of Eastern Christendom; Christians are being oppressed and attacked; churches and holy places are being defiled. Jerusalem is groaning under the Saracen yoke. The Holy Sepulchre is in Moslem hands and has been turned into a mosque. Pilgrims are harassed and even prevented from access to the Holy Land.

The West must march to the defense of the East. All should go, rich and poor alike. The Franks must stop their internal wars and squabbles. Let them go instead against the infidel and fight a righteous war.

God himself would lead them, for they would be doing His work. There will be absolution and remission of sins for all who die in the service of Christ. Here they are poor and miserable sinners; there they will be rich and happy. Let none hesitate; they must march next summer. God wills it! “”

Dying in the service of CHRIST is the key here. Those who died in the shamefull sack of Constantinople probobly did NOT receive the indulgence because the usual condition for recieving an indulgence applied.
[/quote]

Man my book really screws up things bad. Thank You so much metal 1633


#8

Sounds like your book (school text?) is pretty badly biased against the Church, and tells history from the “Enlightenment” standpoint.

If only I had saved my old History of Western Civilization textbooks from 40 years ago, they would be of some help. But seriously, you need some factual history to counter the current revisionism.

I’m sure that there are some available. Start with anything written by H.W. Crocker III. And don’t be a temporal elitist. You can’t judge every age by modern standards.

nationalreview.com/interrogatory/interrogatory032902.asp


#9

American and Englsih Textbooks are generally anti-catholic and anti-spanish so there’s alot of spin concering the Inquisition and Crusades.

As protestnat Engalnd was often at far against Catholic Spain the 2 world powers of the time. Imagining getting wAmerican history form Communist Russia I imagine there would be a lot of spin going on.


#10

Two books I recommend on this subject:

ONE, HOLY, CATHOLIC, AND APOSTOLIC: The Early Church was the Catholic Church by Kenneth Whitehead

and

UPON THIS ROCK by Steven Ray

The Whitehead book uses a historical approach and totally blows a hole in this argument regarding the Eastern churches never ccepting Papal authority. For example,
from Pg. 286 of Whitehead book includes a excerpt of a document called the Formula of Hormisdas which was signed and agreed to by over 250 Eastern bishops in the year 519. This document was one of the key sources of the 1870 Papal Primacy and Infallability. Its too long to quote here. This is just one example. Check out the evidence.

philipmarus


#11

[quote=metal1633]During the early councils the eastern churhes did honor the Roman Bishop as having the Primacy. The Schism was as politically motivated as it was one of Doctrine and they have since REJECTED the Popes authority.
[/quote]

(sigh) Orthodox did not reject the Popes authority, he lost it when he left the church. And as has been stated before, the Eastern church never had a problem with the primacy of the bishop of Rome, it is his claim of jurisdictional supremacy that we reject in accordance with the canons set forth by the seven ecumenical councils which you claim to accept.

John.


#12

[quote=RomanRyan1088]By the 4th century*, the Christian Church had developed a system of organization… Over time, one bishop-the bishop of Rome-began to claim that he was the leader of what was now called the Roman Catholic Church.*

[/quote]

The Church has been called “the Catholic Church” since at least the beginning of the 2nd century. The first documented use of the phrase “the Catholic Church” is in Ignatius of Antioch’s Letter to the Smyraeans written about A.D. 107: “wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.”

Here are a couple more early references to the claim of universal leadership in the Church by bishop of Rome:

Writing about A.D. 189, Irenaeus of Lyon, says of the Church of Rome: “…of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul…it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its pre-eminent authority.” (Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book 3, Chap.3)

Writing in A.D. 220, Tertullian calls Pope Callistus I “the bishop of bishops, which means the Pontifex Maximus” (Tertullian, On Modesty).


#13

prodromus, don’t you understand brother that there is essentially no such thing as primacy of honor so to speak unless there is an accompanying power.

Primacy of honor means nothing, in fact to give someone a primacy/tital above others but not mean anything is in reality a dishonor.

Primacy of honor can never work because unless the title carries authority associatd with it, then there is in reality no primacy, it serves no purpose.

In Christ

Tim


#14

[quote=Tim Hayes]prodromus, don’t you understand brother that there is essentially no such thing as primacy of honor so to speak unless there is an accompanying power.
[/quote]

Not true. It is a position of respect which can be lost if that person abuses that respect. The Apostle Peter is described as first among equals, not first above equals.

John.


#15

Just a historical note: In the Holy Roman Empire, Kings were always anointed and crowned by the Church. The Coronation ceremony was done during a Mass, and the anointing was sacred. The late Empress Zita (d 1991) never returned to her homeland because she would have had to renounce her title, because as an anointed Empress, she held her title to be sacred – different from just being of noble birth.


#16

The above translation is not accurate, though it is widespread. This is a proper translation of the text in question.
“as it would be very tedious to enumerate in such a work the succession of all the Churches, we will trace that of the very great and very ancient Church and known of all, which was founded and established at Rome by the two very glorious Apostles, Peter and Paul; which possesses a tradition that comes from the Apostles as much as the Faith declared to men, and which has transmitted it to us through the succession of her Bishops; by that, we confound all those who in any manner whatsoever, either through blindness or bad intention, do not gather where they should; for every Church, that is to say, the faithful who are from all places, are obliged to go toward that Church, because of the most powerful principality. In this Church, the tradition of the Apostles has been preserved by those who are of all countries.”

Irenaeus does not say quite what Rome makes him out to say.

John.


#17

Boniface VIII – the Pope everybody loves to hate. One bad dude! Dante put him in Hell. But see my post on coronations. The Church gave the power to the crown. Of course, this was never entirely clear, as in England today, where the church places the crown on the monarch’s head, but the monarch is head of the church. :whacky: The papacy was frequently hobbled by secular powers – especially when she had feudal power herself.

But you can’t call Boniface VIII “early Church” by any stretch.


#18

Tim & Prodromos – please don’t hijack Ryan’s thread. There are better places to duke this out.


#19

[quote=JimG]Sounds like your book (school text?) is pretty badly biased against the Church, and tells history from the “Enlightenment” standpoint.

If only I had saved my old History of Western Civilization textbooks from 40 years ago, they would be of some help. But seriously, you need some factual history to counter the current revisionism.

I’m sure that there are some available. Start with anything written by H.W. Crocker III. And don’t be a temporal elitist. You can’t judge every age by modern standards.

nationalreview.com/interrogatory/interrogatory032902.asp
[/quote]

I agree about Crocker. I’ve got “Triumph: The Power and the Glory of the Catholic Church” and it’s so enlightening. I’ve been Catholic for all my life, and thought I knew a lot about the Church, but I’ve gained a whole new respect for her since reading Crocker’s book. Gave me new insight into the meaning of Communion of Saints, and the fact that we are just as much one with the early Catholics as we are with those in our own parishes.


#20

What ever happened to “Render to Ceaser what is Ceaser’s?”

In Christ,

Chris


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