The Promise of the Spirit


#1

In John 14-17, Jesus is speaking to the Eleven and promises that the Holy Spirit would “guide them into all truth.”

Some view this as a promise to the leaders of the fledgling Church and not to ALL believers. They see this verse is a foundation stone for the doctrine of infallibility.

However, in Acts 2, Peter, speaking of the Holy Spirit, clearly states:

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”

From this passage, non-Catholics argue that all believers have the Holy Spirit to lead them and to help them understand “all truth”.

Catholic apologists argue, “Then why are there xx,000 denominations which teach conflicting and contradictory doctrines, etc., etc.”

So, did Jesus promise that the Holy Spirit would lead each individual believer into all truth or not?

How would YOU distinguish between the promise of the Spirit to the Church and to the individual?


#2

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, not contradiction. Those xx,000 denominations teaches may conflicting doctrines. It seem to be that the Holy Spirit is guided them in different directions. The Holy Spirit is immutable and cannot change his mind, or be change.

Sola Scriptura is Achilles kneel of the doctrine of Protestantism. Even the Orthodox Church condemned the doctrine of Scripture Alone.

So, did Jesus promise that the Holy Spirit would lead each individual believer into all truth or not?

The promise of the Holy Spirit to lead us to all truth is only given to the Church authority. Not individuals. If it were individuals, explain why Judaizers using Scripture Alone that Gentile need to be circumcised if they want to be saved, or explain that to Bishop Arianism who use Scripture to back up his claim that Christ was not God like the Father, but a creature made in time. All of which were condemned by the Council of the Church not individuals.

How would YOU distinguish between the promise of the Spirit to the Church and to the individual?

Where does it say that individual are given the authority to interpret? The NT is filled with an authoritiative Church. You see this clearly in NT.


#3

But how did the Church combat Arianism? They did it by referring to the Scripture. This is how heresies were combatted, by showing that Scripture was against them. For example, how could the Gnostics be shown wrong on the basis of Tradition. After all, that was one of the bases of Gnosticism, that they had a special oral tradition from Jesus and the Apostles. How can you say “but our tradition is different from yours and ours is right”? The way to combat it was to rely on Scripture.


#4

The Church combat Arianism by presiding the Council of Nicea in 325 AD.

They affirm what Theophilus of Antioch taught concerning the Blessed Trinity.

He said and I quote;

In Scripture there is as yet no single term by which the Three Divine Persons are denoted together. The word trias (of which the Latin trinitas is a translation) is first found in Theophilus of Antioch about A.D. 180. He speaks of "the Trinity of God [the Father], His Word and His Wisdom (“Ad. Autol.”, II, 15). The term may, of course, have been in use before his time. Afterwards it appears in its Latin form of trinitas in Tertullian (“De pud.” c. xxi). In the next century the word is in general use. It is found in many passages of Origen (“In Ps. xvii”, 15). The first creed in which it appears is that of Origen’s pupil, Gregory Thaumaturgus. In his Ekthesis tes pisteos composed between 260 and 270, he writes:

There is therefore nothing created, nothing subject to another in the Trinity: nor is there anything that has been added as though it once had not existed, but had entered afterwards: therefore the Father has never been without the Son, nor the Son without the Spirit: and this same Trinity is immutable and unalterable forever (P. G., X, 986).

To combat Arianism they defined God as Three Persons but One God. The Trinity.

The Church based this not on Scripture Alone but Scripture and Tradition as One Source. Since both Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition serves as Word of God.

The source of where I got this from is from newadvent.org/cathen/15047a.htm


#5

bump

Sheesh. This is a major topic…


#6

Let me just requote what I said earlier.

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, not contradiction. Those xx,000 denominations teaches may conflicting doctrines. It seem to be that the Holy Spirit is guided them in different directions. The Holy Spirit is immutable and cannot change his mind, or be change.

Sola Scriptura is Achilles kneel of the doctrine of Protestantism. Even the Orthodox Church condemned the doctrine of Scripture Alone.

So the Promise of the Spirit is given to the Church, not the individuals.


#7

Manny-

You and I are on the same page.

I was looking for a little debate here. :rolleyes:


#8

I know. We are. It will take a while to get our Non-Catholic Christian friends to get into this.


#9

I can’t debate with you, Randy, but I imagine that someone might throw out the following:

1 John: 2:27 (NKJV)
But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.


#10

Then let’s just chat. :stuck_out_tongue:

You have offered a good verse.

It seems to suggest that anyone who has the Spirit does not need anyone to teach them. However, after the Day of Pentecost when the Spirit descended mightily upon the believers in Jerusalem, we read the following:

Acts 2:42
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.

Why would anyone devote himself to the teaching of mere men when they had the Spirit to teach them “all truth”?


#11

Possibilities?

A. The verse I quoted might mean that the Holy Spirit somehow confirms what it is already taught. In context, it seems that John is speaking to his audience about false teachers and anti-christ type people and admonishes them to “test the spirits.” Maybe he means that the Holy Spirit bear witness to the truth they’ve already received.

**B. **The early church needed apostles’ teaching for a little while and then switched to only needing the Holy Spirit. :rolleyes:

**C. **The verses contradict each other.

**D. **The verse I quoted might mean that the Holy Spirit teaches them things other than doctrine, and leaves the doctrine-teaching to the apostles.

Um. That’s all I can think of for now. :blush:


#12

Let’s agree that we can eliminate “C”. :yup:

Now, concerning “A” - let’s examine that option in the light of the entire verse. Jesus said, “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.”

If there was more that Jesus wanted to say but did not due to the fact that the Apostles could not “bear” it, then does it seem plausible that the Holy Spirit - mentioned in the same breath - would have the responsibility for leading them into these things that Jesus was leaving unsaid?


#13

Okay. We’ll eliminate C.

Now, concerning “A” - let’s examine that option in the light of the entire verse. Jesus said, “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.”

If there was more that Jesus wanted to say but did not due to the fact that the Apostles could not “bear” it, then does it seem plausible that the Holy Spirit - mentioned in the same breath - would have the responsibility for leading them into these things that Jesus was leaving unsaid?

:hmmm: It does seem plausible


#14

The inherent danger thus far has been to look at individual verses of Scripture. It is easy to take out of context any biblical verse outside of the chapter or book in which it is found, indeed, out of context with all of Scripture.

If we look at the Holy Spirit more broadly, in the context in which it is placed, we find no contradictions. The apparent contradictions mentioned ignore the fact that humans have two natures: their private nature and their social nature.

The Holy Spirit talking to us individually addresses the former, and collectively, the later. Insofar as humans collectively go, the intent is for one kata holos, that is, universal living body of Christ on Earth (that is, the Church).

So, the Holy Spirit can lead us individually to Christ and God; and collectively, bind us in our commonality to one purpose, one church and the strength of one faith.

I truly believe that Satan thoroughly enjoys the confusion of the divided body of Christ on Earth. You Protestants ought give that some thought. Division never strengthens, it only weakens. And you (applicable to those sects who do so) have the temerity to call the Catholic and Apostolic Church Satan’s work? Christ established a universal church, provided it with teachings and traditions and intended it to go forth with unity.

So who is doing Satan’s devisive work? Men like Calvin and Martin Luther divided the body of Christ on Earth.

Don’t get me wrong, however. It is the responsibility of the laity to keep the clergy in line (and I do not mean to secular relativism), but rather the body, the brain and the spirit of the body of Christ on earth needs to be in harmony.

That it is not is something all Christians should lament and strive toward healing. Again, as I have in other posts, I remind Catholics that it is our responsibility to help our wayward brothers and sisters in Christ rejoin the body of Christ on Earth.


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