This forum was closed on October 1st, 2010. However, the archives are open to the public and filled with vast amounts of good reading and information for you to enjoy. If you wish to meet some Wardrobians, please visit the Into the Wardrobe Facebook group.

Not relying on anything but God's Word

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby archenland_knight » 19 Feb 2009, 03:38

Stanley wrote:And it happens in fact, that Scripture (as a defined canon) came rather late into the game after all. For it was the Church that established, with its Authority, the canon of Scripture.


Again, that's your version. We would say that Scripture established itself by proving to be the word of God, and the church had no choice but to recognize the Scritpures that would have been Scripture whether the church recognized them or not.

And even at that, the Church only recognized a very small portion of Scripture, for the Torah and the Prophets were acknowledged as scripture long before Josheph's father was born. From our point of view, the church no more "established scripture" than they established the Divinity of Christ.

Stanley wrote:And isn't it curious (and gravy) that Scripture itself seems to fortify the importance of Tradition and Teaching, if Paul and other NT writers are to be trusted.


Again, you take your church's interpretation for granted. The passages you say fortify the importance of "Tradition and Teaching" we would say fortify the importance of The Holy Scriptures, precisely because Paul and the NT writers are to be trusted.

Stanley wrote:All your analysis about my supposed circular reasoning dissolves (at least it seems so to me) in the face of the Church being the one that established the canon and reliability of Scripture in the first place.


Again, might hold true, but only if one makes the assumption that the Church has the Authority to establish scripture in the first place. We would say emphatically that She does not and never has and never will! We would say that scripture was established by The Holy Spirit long before the Church officially recognized what The Holy Spirit had already done.

I'm not trying to disprove your point of view, because that has been tried around here and the only thing we have proven is the complete futility of having these kinds of discussions. All I am trying to demonstrate is that the things you seem to think are so obvious are only obvious if one starts with certain preconceptions. Those preconceptions make perfect sense if one assumes RCC authority. They make no sense if one does not.

Stanley wrote:and just to avoid a possible future misconception, I don't think the Church would say that one "came before" the other, but that they "grew up together", interwoven and indissoluable, and that any portion of the three legs cannot stand if one of them are removed. But again, that is subject for another and different discussion I think, enjoyable as it would be.)


Really ... you wouldn't say that "one came before the other"? So ... before the Church, The Torah wasn't scripture?

Scripture was around long before the Church. Not the NT, obviously, but most of the Scriptures predate the church by 400 years minimum. And the authority of Scripture was so well established that when Christ came, He stated that he came to "fulfill The Law and The Prophets".

We would go so far as to say that the Church is built upon the foundation of the Scriptures.

Ephesians 2:20 wrote: EPH 2:19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.


Now, I'm sure the RCC probably interprets "apostles and prophets" to somehow refer to to church tradition. But we take it to refer to Scripture itself. And rather than calling Scripture a "one-legged stool" (an act some of us would consider outright blasephemy), we believe this passage refers to it as the "Foundation" of God's Church.

The Church, we believe, did not establish scripture, but Scripture is the very foundation on which the Church rests.

Now, I realize I have better odds of winning the Publisher's ClearingHouse Sweepstakes than I do of convincing you that my point of view is the correct one. That's not my goal. I'm simply trying to demonstrate that the POV you seem to think should be so obvious is only obvious from a certain perspective.

:edited to clear up that last line.
Last edited by archenland_knight on 19 Feb 2009, 14:30, edited 1 time in total.
Romans 5:8 "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
User avatar
archenland_knight
Wardrobian
 
Posts: 771
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Obviously at a computer keyboard

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby Bluegoat » 19 Feb 2009, 12:13

Stanley Anderson wrote:
Bluegoat wrote:I also suspect that there are many who are comfortable in the Catholic Church today, who if they were suddenly time warped to the late middle ages, would find it impossible to support - it's practice at that time seemed so far from anything remotely acceptable by a Christian.


As I would have have said myself in years past -- "How DARE the Catholic Church claim such authority! Hmph!"


I was not intending this so much as an argument against anything, but as a call to be kind to others, and perhaps prevent unfair arguments.

I think in any discussion like this is is worthwhile to remember that many people who are now RC would be given serious pause if their church carried on the way they did in the late Middle Ages. Similarly. I think it is very useful for protestants to remember that if the RC church at the time of the Reformation had agreed to the changes it has since made, the whole thing might possibly been averted, and the reformers absorbed into the church as so many earlier movements were.

But neither is really a persuasive argument for joining one group or another.
User avatar
Bluegoat
 
Posts: 205
Joined: Dec 2008
Location: Nova Scotia

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby Stanley Anderson » 19 Feb 2009, 19:18

archenland_knight wrote:
Stanley wrote:And it happens in fact, that Scripture (as a defined canon) came rather late into the game after all. For it was the Church that established, with its Authority, the canon of Scripture.


Again, that's your version. We would say that Scripture established itself by proving to be the word of God, and the church had no choice but to recognize the Scritpures that would have been Scripture whether the church recognized them or not.


In a sense, we agree here -- I guess I would say that certainly the Church had no "choice" but to recognize the Scriptures, since by definition (ok, the RC definition), the Church is led by the Holy Spirit to accomplish God's will and is the very means or "mechanism" by which the Holy Spirit accomplished that goal (amongst many others of course).

And even at that, the Church only recognized a very small portion of Scripture, for the Torah and the Prophets were acknowledged as scripture long before Josheph's father was born.


Nevertheless, there are lots of decisions about Scripture that have been made by the Church for its members even about the OT. For example, perhaps you are aware of the differences between how various churches view what are known as the Apocrypha?

From our point of view, the church no more "established scripture" than they established the Divinity of Christ.


Whew. Not sure what to even say here. I suppose I'd rather not get into such an intense subject at the moment. You do know about the long, drawn-out and fierce battles and incredibly detailed hammering out about the doctrines of Christ's divinity and His nature and of the numerous heresies that have popped up throughout history to be refuted by the Church? You may question the full extent of the Church's role in that process or whether those final doctrines were correct or justified, but there is no question that the Church was instrumental in that "establishment" process. Again, the RCC sees the Church (in part) as the instrument by which the Holy Spirit brings these sorts of things into focus for the edification of the Body of Christ.

Stanley wrote:And isn't it curious (and gravy) that Scripture itself seems to fortify the importance of Tradition and Teaching, if Paul and other NT writers are to be trusted.


Again, you take your church's interpretation for granted. The passages you say fortify the importance of "Tradition and Teaching" we would say fortify the importance of The Holy Scriptures, precisely because Paul and the NT writers are to be trusted.


Um, so something like "Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle" ONLY fortifies the Scripture part? Are they mutually exclusive?

All I am trying to demonstrate is that the things you seem to think are so obvious are only obvious if one starts with certain preconceptions.


Have I said or implied that I thought any of these things are "so obvious"? I've given my views along with arguments for some of those view about why I think they are true. Isn't it one of the main purposes for stating things or providing arguments or having discussions and debates about things because they are not obvious? If your only purpose is to let me know that many things are not obvious or that preconceptions can color one's view, you are probably wasting your time. It took me nearly a half a century to come to the point of joining the Catholic Church. That's not a point of pride for me (I wish I'd been more willing to finally come home a long long time ago), but as a result, I at least think I'm pretty familiar with supposed preconceptions that can occur on both sides. That of course doesn't mean I'm not susceptible to being fooled by some of them, or prove to you that I made the right decision in the end, but then I suppose you must recognize the same susceptibility to such things for yourself? Can I reasonably guess that we are both at least aware that such things as preconceptions exist and that one needs to be wary of their effects where possible?

...We would go so far as to say that the Church is built upon the foundation of the Scriptures.


Yes I suppose. Who would deny such a thing (for the most part since not all were written at the same time)? But again, is this a "mutually exclusive" sort of thing? Was the Holy Spirit also involved, do you think? Did anything regarding the foundation of the Church occur at Pentecost (which was before, say, Acts was even written), or was it only a bunch of people speaking in tongues?

Ephesians 2:20 wrote: EPH 2:19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.


Now, I'm sure the RCC probably interprets "apostles and prophets" to somehow refer to to church tradition. But we take it to refer to Scripture itself. And rather than calling Scripture a "one-legged stool" (an act some of us would consider outright blasephemy), we believe this passage refers to it as the "Foundation" of God's Church.


I'm trying to resist (and failing miserably in many of my posts above, I realize) turning this into a "which one is right? Catholics or Protestants?" contest, and focussing primarily on the idea that a church can think that it relies only on Scripture and not be guilty of twisting Scripture to its own peculiar interpretation. If everyone that read Scripture came to the same conclusions, one might be able to say that Scripture was clear enough "by itself" (whatever that means) to warrant such "independent" readings. But your very statement quoted above demonstrates that different intelligent people come to different conclusions and interpretations. What if a member of your own "we" group came to you and said that after much study and honest reflection on Scripture, it seemed perfectly clear that "apostles and prophets" refers to church tradition? What could you tell him? That he wasn't reading clearly? That your clear reading was better than his clear reading? Does someone have authority to judge between the two views? (Note that I'm not trying to argue at this point that the RCC is the one that must arbitrate, only that the issue can be a tough one to resolve and that arbitration of some kind would seem to be necessary. But maybe you have a handy Sola Scriptura answer that resolves it?)

I'm simply trying to demonstrate that the POV you seem to think should be so obvious is only obvious from a certain perspective.


Again, I'd like to be able to state views and discuss what I think are fairly heavy and potentially complex subjects without having it thought that I am implying they are "obvious". What parts of my posts have given you that impression? Can you point to particular examples in this thread so that I can examine them and try to learn from them and work on not seeming that way to you? Because as it is, I feel like I have constantly been claiming throughout this thread that it is NOT an easy or obvious issue and that that non-obvious-ness is one of the reasons I am trying to discuss and debate it (not to mention my own many-years-long personal journey and experience, which should at least suggest that something that took me that long to find could not possibly cause me to think it was "obvious").

Just to show you what my (perhaps biased) view is, here is a sample paragraph from a previous post that seems to me to represent the sort of general tone I have been trying to generate in my posts:

...So anyway, I don't hope to provide a convincing argument to make everyone instantly become Catholics, only to explore the logic and consistency of the sort of belief that says it does not rely on anything but God's word, and to see where that leads. If God's word points back to itself in all cases, then fine. But if it seems to point somewhere else, then let the reader beware. There may be dragons in those waters perhaps, but if the map is to be trusted, the treasure it points to and the means by which it suggests getting there is probably worth it.


Does that excerpt, or any other parts of my posts in this thread, convey the idea that I think my views should be "so obvious"?
------------------------

By the way, I'd like to address another point you made in an earlier post that I didn't have time to address back at that point, but which I didn't want to ignore completely. You wrote:

As for your argument that the diversity of opinions and interpretations among "Sola Scriptura" churches is somehow indictitive of a falacy in the "Sola Scritptura" position, I simply don't see why it should matter. We are called to "unity", which has nothing to do with all believing the exact same thing. I can have perfect Christian Unity with a Calvinist or a Southern Baptist even though we would differ on several theological points. "Unity" does not imply blind conformity to a single interpretation. That would just be creepy


This I think illustrates the sort of POV problem you were saying I was guilty of above. I wonder if you realize that for the Catholic, one of the most important and visible and defining aspects of "unity" is the very act of partaking in the Body and Blood of Christ in the Eucharist. And that separation from this aspect of union (ie, communion) by the denial of the Real Presence of Christ in the consecrated bread and wine is, by that definition, well, disunity and schism. The Eucharist is the very Life and Center of Christians from the Catholic position. Sorry, but that's the creepy way it is -- from this POV over here, anyway.

I don't know what your particular church is like, but here is a question about "that side" where you seem to be arguing from: Where is it that Jesus himself most talks about unity over and over and over the course of several chapters (“that they may be one, even as we are one”, etc, etc, etc, etc)? It was at the last supper, the initiation of the Eucharist. It seems very ironic to me that so many of the churches that deny the Sacramental nature of the Eucharist and the Real Presence of Christ in the elements of Communion are very often the ones that only practice communion maybe once every month or two (and my wife says that the – very popular -- non-denominational church she attended for many years only even then would have it on an “off” weeknight and not at Sunday services, as though it were an “extra” thing you could participate in if you had the time). I’m sorry, but for the Catholic, this is a grave matter of disunity and separation. Disagree with that view if you like (a great number of very intelligent people do, after all), but can you at least see that your “point-of-view” may perhaps blind you too from the potential serious and concrete nature of Unity and the importance of not disrupting that Unity that the Catholic point of view sees?

--Stanley
…on a night of rain Frodo smelled a sweet fragrance on the air and heard the sound of singing that came over the water. And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a fair green country under a swift sunrise.
User avatar
Stanley Anderson
Wardrobian
 
Posts: 3251
Joined: Aug 1996
Location: Southern California

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby postodave » 19 Feb 2009, 20:19

Now moved - thanks Stanley. How confusing for everyone. I don't know how I did that.
Last edited by postodave on 19 Feb 2009, 22:02, edited 1 time in total.
So I drew my sword and got ready
But the lamb ran away with the crown
postodave
Wardrobian
 
Posts: 816
Joined: Oct 2004

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby Stanley Anderson » 19 Feb 2009, 21:18

(Postodave -- I'm thinking you meant to post your message above in the "Pro Life, Pro Abortion and Postmodernism" thread?)

--Stanley
…on a night of rain Frodo smelled a sweet fragrance on the air and heard the sound of singing that came over the water. And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a fair green country under a swift sunrise.
User avatar
Stanley Anderson
Wardrobian
 
Posts: 3251
Joined: Aug 1996
Location: Southern California

Re: Not relying on anything but God's Word

Postby cyranorox » 23 Feb 2009, 00:20

if
We would say that Scripture established itself by proving to be the word of God, and the church had no choice but to recognize the Scritpures that would have been Scripture whether the church recognized them or not.
that makes sense to you, i'm amazed. How can 'proved itself' be predicated of a text? Proving to whom? And is not the judge higher than the matter judged?

Are you saying that the Church members and founders such as John, Paul, Geo-- um, Matthew and Luke weren't writers of their books, thus producing scripture from within the Church?

Word of God really means two things: first, primarily the Logos, the Second Person. Secondarily, the word about God, the tale of the history of salvation - the OT and NT.

Your hypostasization of Scripture, which is really two different levels and categories [the NT being the higher authority and governing the OT] is just deeply incoherent, because we know a good deal about how it was written, collected, screened, organized - not dropped from the sky into the Holy Printing Press just about the time the dissenting voices of Protestantisme arose.....
Apocatastasis Now!
cyranorox
Wardrobian
 
Posts: 274
Joined: Dec 2007
Location: a garret over a moonlit street

Previous

Return to Religion, Science, and Philosophy

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered members and 2 guests

cron