Monday, December 31, 2007

The Pope's Private Residence

Not everyone is aware that the Pope owns his own house. I am sure everyone wants to see it right?

Here it is:
Photobucket

What an obscene and ostentatious display of wealth ? Especially compared to these "men of God":
http://kmerian.blogspot.com/search/label/pastors%20for%20profit

Myth of the "dagon" hat

I have seen this several times on the net and it is just plain silly. The notion is that the mitre that bishops wear in the Catholic Church is actually a representation of the fish god "dagon".

Here is a sketch showing the evolution of the Mitre from the 11th Century onward:



Now, notice that the mitre has only been in use since about the year 1000AD, and that (according to wikipedia) the cult of Dagon disappeared about 500BC, how can bishops be referencing a pagan God whose followers died 1500 years before? It is ridiculous to think they are.

Here is also some good articles on the history of the Mitre:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10404a.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitre

Now can we stop this "dagon" nonsense? You have been educated.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Anti-Catholicsm rears its ugly head.

It is rare when I come across a true "anti-catholic" on the internet. Keep in mind, I define an "Anti-Catholic" as someone with an irrational fear and/or hatred of the Catholic Church and Catholics in general. Today on CARM I ran across this gem:

I've been around catholics for decades and arouns them on the internet for years. The catholics in person are as ignorant of what they believe as I would expect. The catholics on the internet are trained liars. By this I mean that regardless of how it stares at them from accurate sources, including their own, they lie their way out of it, using the usual catholic controvertist methods. That means if one of them were to say good morning to me, I'd wait to see if it actually is one. I object to your statement of pre-determined, since I look for the unusual all the time. You know, the possibility that a catholic may agree that what he believes and preaches is not true. I don't hold my breath, you can understand why.
How is this Christian?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

More scare tactics.

Why is the truth so hard. Why is it necessary nowadays to vilify the other person in a dispute?

A Colorado Hospital is being purchased by a Catholic group. And already some of the doctors and the press are making it seem like health care will suffer. Of course there is a sob story about a woman who will be denied a life-saving operation because of repressive catholic morals (In fact, Catholic hospital directives would not prevent her surgery at all). And the scare tactic that people will be kept alive against their will as vegetables (this is also untrue).

Here is a letter I wrote to the paper on this article:

This article is full of misinformation about the Catholic Church and is poor journalism.

First of all, nothing in Catholic medical directives would forbid the Doctor from performing a tubal ligation on Ms. Strong. She has a legitimate medical need for it. I don't know if it is an attempt either by the hospital or the reporter to make the Catholic Church look evil but it is not true. I have been around Catholic hospitals my whole life and have seen this procedure performed many times in them.

Also, Dr. Murphey is mistaken, living wills are allowed and are followed at Catholic Hospitals.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Birthday



To Dr. Otto von Habsburg, who turns 95 on Tuesday. A Christian statesman and head of the house of Habsburg, he is the personification of a Catholic servant of the people.

Europe NewsOtto von Habsburg turns 95By DPANov 19, 2007, 16:26 GMT
Vienna - Otto von Habsburg, son of Austria's last emperor, turns 95 on Tuesday.
Bearing the full title Franz Joseph Otto Robert Maria Anton Karl Max Heinrich Sixtus Xaver Felix Renatus Ludwig Gaetan Pius Ignatius Habsburg, Imperial Prince, Archduke of Austria and Prince of Hungary, he was born on November 20, 1912 at the heart of the then-Austrian empire.
Four years later his father Karl's accession to the Austrian throne made young Otto von Habsburg crown price, expecting one day to inherit the Austro-Hungarian empire.
But history, and Austria's loss of World War I changed not only Europe's fate, but also the fate of the Habsburg family.
The Habsburgs were forced to abdicate in 1919, but the dynasty's scion regarded himself in line for the throne for many years to come. Only in 1961 Otto renounced his claim to the throne, but none of these adversities prevented him from embarking on a political career.
Habsburg served as a member of the European parliament for the conservative German CSU for 20 years. From the 1930s onwards, the trained lawyer, who holds Austrian, Hungarian, German and Croatian citizenship, was an outspoken opponent of Nazi Germany.
During the Second World War he lobbied in the United States to re- establish Austria as a state. From the mid-1950s onwards Habsburg settled in Bavaria in southern Germany.
Since his retirement from politics he has been a prolific writer, focussing on European issues.
© 2007 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur

His name says it all....


One of the most lavish "Pastors for profit" I have ever seen is Creflo Dollar:















Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (Matthew 6:19)

Friday, November 16, 2007

I thought this guy was a healer?


Looking around the internet I found Benny Hinns website. Benny Hinn claims to be a "healer" and has cured people of AIDS, Cancer and other diseases. So explain the benefits at his company:

BHM Benefits


Our competitive benefits package includes:

  • Subsidized health insurance coverage
  • Subsidized dental insurance
  • Life and AD&D benefits
  • Short and long-term disability insurance
  • Workers' compensation insurance
  • 403(b) retirement savings plan
  • Direct deposit paychecks
  • Supplemental dependent life insurance available
  • Paid Time Off
  • And the biggest benefit of all: the knowledge that you are working to win souls, souls, SOULS!

The information contained here is meant as a summary overview of benefits. The benefits listed above apply to U.S. employees only. Specific benefits will be discussed with employees on the date of hire.

Call me crazy, but if this guy is a legitimate faith healer. Why does he have to offer his employees health insurance, workers comp and dental? Can't he just heal them?

Ah well, but, winning souls does seem to be quite lucerative, hence his 3 million dollar mansion in Dana Point, California overlooking the Pacific ocean;

Thursday, November 15, 2007

correction

After further research, there is no indication Paula White is the new associate pastor at the FPC

More Pastors for profit....

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "Amen, I say to you, it will be hard for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." (Matthew 19:23-24)
Recently, here in San Antonio there have been a series of stories on a local (and anti-catholic) pastor by the name of Rick Hawkins.

"Bishop" Hawkins founded the "Family Praise Center" And it apparently has been quite lucrative for him. According to the Kendall County Appraisal District Mr. Hawkins owns just under 1 million dollars worth of land northwest of Boerne, Texas:

View Larger Map

Oh, but pastor Rick, is not alone. The new associate Pastor at that Church is the recently divorced Paula White. Ms. White recently purchased this house, also in Boerne:


View Larger Map

It is over 3000 sq feet with a three car garage, guest house and pool.

I close with the words of Pope Paul VI in his encyclical "
Populorum Progressio":
Thus the exclusive pursuit of material possessions prevents man's growth as a human being and stands in opposition to his true grandeur. Avarice, in individuals and in nations, is the most obvious form of stultified moral development.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

My Response to Joe C.

Over at Symphony of Scripture, I have been posting in the comboxes over there, defending the Catholic Faith. Joe C. responded to one of my comments, and wanted a detailed response, so I will post it here. His words are in italics.

Hey I have the Holy Spirit too, cool!!!! Guess I have as much authority as the apostles and Pope by your reasoning? I think you better restate that argument, or nix it alltogether.

The Holy Spirit, gives different gifts to different people. Not everyone is called to be a successor to the Apostles, to possess teaching authority. But those that are called, are Bishops of the Church.

If you need to fill ‘vacancies’ in an ‘office’ of apostleship (aka, mormon alert), then why aren’t there Catholic apostles? And don’t say the cardinals, bishops, and priests are. Why not exactly 12?

Sorry, Joe but the bishops are the modern day successors of the Apostles. I know you told me not to say that, but that is like saying "tell me what 2+2 is, and don't say 4!". Anyway. In Acts we see the first apostle added outside of the twelve (Paul) As the church grew, so did the numbers of apostles.


Why isn’t the Pope the most like Jesus out of all of us, Kenneth? Read my previous comment, please. If the Papacy is God ordained and infalliable (do you even see how cultish and power grabbing that is????), when from the seat of Power, then what of the crusades and burning/torturing/persecution of the heretics? Very Christian, very Christ like. All proclaimed ‘legal’ by the perpetrating Popes, and from their seats of power. Where did Jesus command such actions, how is any of that “Christian” and “From God”? I’d say that’s proof of the Papacy being not what it claims to be, among many other things, and without the Papacy, there is no Catholic anything. Think about it, and please go and study non-catholic written/influenced history, to learn what your “mother church” has done over the past 1700 years.

Because the Pope is still a man, not God. Yes, the Pope is Christs Vicar here on earth. But that does not automatically make him anything more than he is. He is NOT infallible in all things. Merely on matters of faith and morals and even then only when speaking ex cathedra. The Holy Spirit is capable of using men to speak and write infallibly. The Bible is proof of that.

About human nature, all being sinners, and infants…

“Even from birth the wicked go astray; from the womb they are wayward and speak lies.” Ps.58:3

“Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” Ps. 51:5

All have surely sinned. All are evil by nature, by the Curse on Adam. Surely God will not hold infants accountable, but that doesn’t negate their sin nature, and wicked hearts. Have you raised children? Full of lies, deceit, and disrespect, from birth even. And, as your Pope finally decided to contradict the other popes (red flag?), they don’t need a man made tradition of infant baptism to avoid the make believe place of ‘limbo’.

Yes, all have original sin, they are not, however, "evil by nature". God created man in his own image. So if man is evil by nature, God would need to be as well. And your verses confirm original sin, something I am not denying, but they do not speak to when or whether Mary was saved from original sin. In them, David, confirms his sinfulness. They do not speak of Mary. Also, I don't believe that children are "full of lies, deceit and disrespect from birth". Perhaps I am lucky, but that does not describe my daughter at all.

As for Limbo? That was never an official teaching of the church. It was a theological theory that the current Pope settled as baseless. I am not aware of any other Pope teaching it as fact.


I’m not sure how you consistently avoid the quoted verses from Hebrews on the Sacrifice of Christ being ONCE and for all, and ONLY ONCE. You keep changing that to fit your pre conceived bias ingrained in to your mind. Please stop. And don’t accuse us of believing in an ongoing sacrifice from ‘a different point of view’, who are you, Obi Wan Kenobi? (I just watched starwars tonight, lol). It was done once, once and for all, only once. How is that not clear to you? It’s not clear because you pre-assume the Catholic position is correct, and reinterpret based on that. That’s what happens with an ‘infalliable Pope’ and Magistrate.

The Catholic Church has always affirmed that the bloody sacrifice at Calvary spoke of in Hebrews was "once for all" (CCC 1364). In the Eucharist, however, it is made present. I attempted to explain the Catholic position to you in a way you would understand. That when a Protestant "accepts Jesus as their personal Lord and Saviour" His sacrifice is made present in their lives. Apparently I am wrong, as evidenced by those who have corrected me. So I apologize.

This argument is pointless, no one is changing their minds, so I suggest we just stop. Like I brought up with an athiest evolutionist a few months ago, why come to this site to attack or defend, if you’re completely unwilling to change your mind? That means you just came to cause a fight, bicker, whatever, only you know. But why bother if you’re not willing to be open to change, or the truth on certain things? I just don’t get it. I wouldn’t go to a Catholic apologetics site if I wasn’t willing to be open to changing what I believed. Are you willing to change? I hope this message finds you well.

Joe

In debating, we search for truth. I do not seek to convert, but when I see Catholic beliefs being presented improperly, I respond. If Catholics were misrepresenting your beliefs, wouldn't you want to correct them. You may reject Catholicism, but you should accurately know what you are rejecting. Hope this helps

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Zeitgeist: The Movie

A woman at work recommended I watch "Zeitgeist the movie", I did and needless to say, I was not impressed.

The movie is divided into three parts.

Part one deals with the filmmakers idea that Christianity is merely a rehashing of the Horus myth. He makes the laughable statement that there are 16 other deities that claim lives identical to Christ. All born on December 25th. Of course this shows a lack of historical knowledge (the ancient Babylonians and Egyptians did not use the Roman calender). And he also does not seem to realize that there is not a single Christian who believes Jesus was born on December 25th, that is just the day we observe it because we do not know the actual date.

He also states that the star in the east is the star Sirius, which aligns with the southern cross only on Dec. 25. This statement alone shows he is an idiot. Stars don't change positions. Sirius is aligned with the southern Crux EVERY DAY. Of course he obviously does not realize that these stars cannot be seen north of the equator.

Over at "Preventing Truth decay" (love the site name BTW) the site author does an excellent job of debunking Part 1 of Zeitgeist point-for-point.

The other glaring problem is that the Celtic cross (cross with a circle) is just an ancient zodiac symbol. It is not. When St. Patrick converted the Druids, he would draw crosses over their lunar symbols, thus symbolizing the defeat of paganism by the True Faith.

Parts II and III are rehashed conspiracy theories about 9/11 and racist Jewish conspiracy theories from the late 19th century. At the end, the author tells us not to take his movie as truth, but to search out the truth. I did and he is wrong.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Wow

It seems the video I have posted on you tube has created a bit of a firestorm among Christians. Intersetingly I have not found one website defending John Hagee.

I give it about 6 months before Hagee abandons Christianity all together.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Tim Staples v. Matt Slick

I have been listening to the "debate" between Matt Slick (founder of CARM) and Tim Staples (Apologist for Catholic Answers).

As I listen, I recognize that Matt is using a lot of the tactics he uses on CARM. He likes to keep his opponents on the defensive. But so far what is interesting is that Tim is using far more scripture to support his position than Matt is. But in the few discussions I have had with Matt at CARM, this is a common tactic, to keep you on the defensive so that he does not have to expound on his own beliefs. Thus, to those that agree with Matt, it appears that he is just wiping the floor with his opponents. When in reality it is the other way around.

Like when Matt brought up forgiveness of sins. He could not provide any scriptural support for "confessing directly to Christ" when Tim brought up the scriptures that speak of confessing to one another and forgiving "in persona Christi". So, Matt promptly changed the subject.

Also, Matt was trying to trap Tim into saying that faith alone is all that is necessary. What kind of apologetics relies on verbal traps and not the Word of God? Sometimes, I guess it is better to win at any cost, then to risk being shown a fool

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Jesus NOT the messiah.

This startling assertion comes from the Rev. John Hagee of Cornerstone church. Christianity has held for years that Jesus is the Messiah. John Hagee claims he is not. The Rev Hagee has crossed into complete heresy with these statements. See it in his own words:




It is time for all Christians to anathematize this heretic. He has denied the Christ, we should pray for his repentance.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The "tightrope" of some Protestants.

Over at "Beggars All", Carrie is once again trying to show that Catholic notions of Salvation are false and legalistic. Of course, the implicit point is that their brand of Christianity is not legalistic. In my apologetics online I have discovered that there is a real tightrope that they feel a christian must walk.

Catholics are constantly accused of doing "too much" or "adding to" what (they interpret as) God's plan.

But simply having faith (faith alone) apparently is not enough. It must be a "saving faith", but keeping in mind what they say about "adding to" that creates a problem.

We apparently, in order to be saved, must add enough to our faith to turn it into "saving faith" without over doing it and adding too much. Hence the tightrope. It appears that the evangelical is always walking a fine line, trying to do just enough to be saved without overdoing it and thus being damned. That is a very difficult target to hit.

Monday, October 01, 2007

What is an "Anti-Catholic"?

Recently, over at "Beggars all", Carrie accused me of saying that everyone who disagrees with Catholicism is an "anti-catholic zealot" who "harbors an irrational fear or hatred" of Catholics.

I do not throw around the phrase "Anti-Catholic" lightly. I equate it with racism, sexism and extremist fundamentalism.

An example of a "anti-catholic" is Eric Phelps his bigoted rantings against Catholics go to the point of calling for their "righteous execution".

Most Protestants are misinformed, what they know about Catholicism comes from well meaning but equally uninformed pastors, who draw their information from the likes of Hislop (in the case of Tim LaHaye) or Boettner (a la John MacArthur). Now, go into any Catholic bookstore or any apologetics website and you will see these books and many other refuted many times over. I do not consider these men "anti catholics", now if they have read the Catholic position and dismiss it because it is not what they want to believe, then yes, they would be considered anti catholic, but I know neither of these men, so I will not make that determination.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Prayer to the Saints...

Why ask someone else to pray for you if you can go to God yourself? This is the response I hear all the time to Catholic and Orthodox prayer to the Saints. But then the same people will defend their prayer lists and will often offer prayers for family members.

There is a difference between prayer and worship. To pray is simply to ask. Look at any court document. The request to the judge is labeled as the “prayer”.

The saints are the “cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1) that Paul spoke of. We ask them to offer intercession for us (1 Timothy 2:1), because “the prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16)

I never truly understood this doctrine until I attended a Baptist Church. When the minister allowed a moment of silent prayer, I discovered I was alone. The Holy Spirit was not there, the cloud of witnesses (Saints) were not there. I never felt so profoundly sad and lonely in my entire life. I never went back. My next time in a Catholic Church, I knelt in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, and I could feel the presence of Christ in my soul. The Saints and heavenly hosts were there as well, never intruding, just there. True peace and true joy.

Did Luther believe in the Assumption?

Over at "Beggars all" James Swan put up a post attacking another Catholics statement that Luther believed in the Assumption.

It is clear that Luther believed that Mary was in heaven. But, being true to Sola Scriptura he did not feel that her being in heaven should be an article of faith due to the fact that there was no explicit verse in the Bible one way or the other.

This varies with modern Protestants (especially the ones there) because they declare it as impossible, a myth and as a fact that it did not happen.

Of course, this ia a "argument from silence" as well, so I guess I could tack on James' quote here also.

"But an argument from silence is recognized by all to be quite weak. It implies that one must have almost total evidence before demonstration is possible. If this is the case, one could argue cogently that there may have been airplanes in the time of Christ." Dewey M. Beegle, Scripture, Tradition, and Infallibility (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1973), p. 178.

I would point out that there is just as much scriptural justification for the Assumption of Mary as there is for sola scriptura, but one Mr. Swan rejects outright, and the other he clings to as absolute truth, go figure.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Answer Time!

I felt, I should answer my challanges, the first house belongs to the Rev. John Hagee of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, it is in the same exclusive subdivision just down the street from George Strait and David Robinson.

The next house belongs to Robert Tilton, the 2.5 million dollar waterfront house is in Miami Beach, Florida.

And the quiz? The thing they all have in common? They are all TRUE (now reread #16).

Friday, September 07, 2007

This is fun....

Can you guess which of the following are true and which are false?

1. Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning.

2. Alfred Hitchcock didn't have a belly button.

3. A pack-a-day smoker will lose approximately 2 teeth every 10 years.

4. People do not get sick from cold weather; it's from being indoors a lot more.

5. When you sneeze, all bodily functions stop,even your heart!

6. Only 7 per cent of the population are lefties.

7. Forty people are sent to the hospital for dog bites every minute.

8. Babies are born without kneecaps. They don't appear until they are 2-6 years old.

9. The average person over 50 years old will have spent almost 5 years waiting in lines.

10. The toothbrush was invented in 1498.

11. The average housefly lives for one month.

12. 40,000 Americans are injured by toilets each year.

13. A coat hanger is 44 inches long when straightened.

14. The average computer user blinks 7 times a minute.

15. Your feet are bigger in the afternoon than any other time of day.

16. Most of us have eaten a spider in our sleep.

17. The REAL reason ostriches stick their head in the sand is to search for water.

18. The only two animals that can see behind themselves without turning their heads are the rabbit and the parrot.

19. John Travolta turned down the starring roles in "An Officer and a Gentleman" and "Tootsie."

20. Michael Jackson owns the rights to the South Carolina State Anthem.

21. In most television commercials advertising milk,a mixture of white paint and a little thinner is used in place of the milk.

22. Prince Charles and Prince William NEVER travel on the same airplane, just in case there is a crash.

23. The first Harley Davidson motorcycle, built in 1903, used a tomato can for a carburetor.

24. Most hospitals make money by selling the umbilical cords cut from women who give birth. They are used in vein transplant surgery.

25. Humphrey Bogart was related to Princess Diana. They were 7th cousins.

26. If coloring weren't added to Coca-Cola, it would be green.

The Return of the "Antichrist Information Center".

Nury Rivera (wife of the late Alberto Rivera) has resurfaced, now in Florida. She is still pushing her husbands agenda. She is now claiming that the Vatican has been hounding her since her husbands death, offering her 1 million dollars to reveal the location of his grave so that they can take his body. (Never mind that cemetery records are public record in Oklahoma.)

BTW, according to the survey for Rose Hill Cemetery in Broken Arrow, OK "Dr." Alberto Rivera is buried in section Moore (28) L-14 #3.

There we go, just saved the Vatican $1,000,000.

Anyway, they are keeping up their claims and still trying to push the fanciful story that Alberto was ever anything more than a con-man. They cannot prove he was a priest and often turn to the logical fallacy of demand that Catholics prove that we are NOT trying to take over the world. But, of course, you cannot prove a negative.

Alberto was a fake, perhaps he was mentally ill and sincerely believed everything he said, perhaps he did not, we will never know. But apparently there are more coming out now who knew he was a fraud and can prove it.

Donald R. Blanton, who used to work with him at AIC, sued him and won! (Rivera was famous for daring people to sue him, well, Blanton did, and Rivera could not prove a thing)

Roy Livesay also wrote a book about him, and was able to show he was a fraud as well.

Add to this the work of iconbusters and Cornerstone Magazine and Gary Dale Cearley and the evidence against Alberto is overwhelming.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Just a note.

I have re-enabled anonymous commenting

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Here's Another:


Guess who this 2.5 million dollar house belongs to?

He is a popular TV preacher, and the dock is for his yacht.

(photo curtosy of MSN Local Live)

Which well know Pastors house is this?




Been playing around with MSN's new bird's eye view feature, can you guess which well known Pastors', three-quarters of a million dollar home this is?


Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. Matthew 19:24

(Picture curtosey of MSN Live Local)

The Strange behavior of the Catholic turned Anti-Catholic

Lately, in my trips around the blogosphere, I have noticed that often the most vehement Anti-Catholic, is the person who claims to have been a Catholic at one point. Searching the net and blogger, you will find numerous sites from someone who claims to have been "saved" from the Catholic church and now wants to just devote their free time to bashing it.

This is an interesting phenomenon, often these people will latch on to any and every anti-catholic theory or fanciful history, they will use "drive by" apologetics to try to make points that really do not exist (quoting one or two sentences out of context in order to make it appear Catholics claim to be greater than the scriptures or have a very dim view of them, most often).

I am not here to point fingers, but I can't help but notice that I cannot find blogs from former-Baptists-turned-Catholic, bashing the Baptist Church, or any other Protestant denomination. Truth stands to defend itself against falsehood, falsehood attacks truth. That is why Catholics are always on the defensive from those who would tear it down.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A response to Pastor Ken Silva at Apprising Ministries

Recently over at "Symphony of Scripture" Pastor Ken Silva responded to my criticism of Dave Hunts "A Woman Rides the Beast" with a reference to a article he wrote entitled "THE NON-GOSPEL OF SACRAMENTS AND BAPTISM IN THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH"

Pastor Silva opens with a quote from Acts 15:1-2, while it is clear he views it as a slap against sacraments, it is really nothing of the sort, if we read on in that chapter to the Council of Jerusalem, we see why Paul disagreed with them and it had nothing to do with sacraments. It had to do with the fact that under the new covenant of Christ, it is no longer necessary to follow the mosaic law.

He moves on to criticize Rick Warren, who is not a Catholic, so we will not go into his "brand" of Christianity.

Next, he states that the Catholic Church has not changed since the Council of Trent anathematized "salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone". Now, let's look at what Trent does say.:

CANON I.-If any one saith, that man may be justified before God by his own works, whether done through the teaching of human nature, or that of the law, without the grace of God through Jesus Christ; let him be anathema.

That's right, the Church starts out by saying that good works, cannot save. That being said, however, the Council goes on to say:

"CANON XX.-If any one saith, that the man who is justified and how perfect soever, is not bound to observe the commandments of God and of the Church, but only to believe; as if indeed the Gospel were a bare and absolute promise of eternal life, without the condition of observing the commandments ; let him be anathema."

This Canon is Trents' response to "salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone", because what the Fathers said at Trent is the logical outcome of that belief, if we believe our faith alone saves us, then the Bible becomes irrelevant, Jesus' teachings to obey his commandments becomes optional. That is my big complaint about that doctrine.

Of course the usual response to this is that if we are truly saved then we cannot help but follow his commandments. Thus we abdicate all personal responsibility for our actions. If we sin, it is because Jesus made us do it (I am not making this up, people have said this to me). If we lie, cheat, steal, it is the Holy Spirit allowing us too. See, the failure in this line of thinking?

He goes on to quote para 1257 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church (minus the footnotes), but neglects to explain how if Baptism is not necessary for salvation, why Jesus commands it to be done? (John 3:5, Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:16). For the fun of it? Or, once we are saved, are we free to "pick and choose" which commandments to follow?

He goes on to accurately reproduce the paragraphs on the sacraments and grace. But he does not explain the Catholic belief on Justification. Catholics believe we are justified in Baptism, but at that point we are also being sanctified by the Grace of God. Being justified is just a legal state, we are still unclean, but now we are justified and can have hope of salvation. And, it is in Baptism, we first receive that:
"But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God" (1 Cor. 6:11).

Paul clearly shows a separation between justification and sanctification. In all his letters he is exhorting them to avoid sin, to become closer to God. If he believe that justification alone was enough, he would have felt no need to keep them from apostasy, because they were already saved.

Pastor Silva claims we are justified by faith alone, yet the Bible says:
" See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone." (James 2:24). How can a man hold a position that is so clearly contradicted by scripture?

He also claims that good works are the result of salvation. Yet, he and others criticize the Catholics for performing good works to earn our salvation. If we are not saved, how can we perform good works? And, if the unsaved can also perform good works, how can you say that good works can ONLY be performed by those who are saved?

And he states that those who are holy in Christ are "blameless" before God. Now, I searched Ephesians I and I could not find the word "blameless" anywhere. In many places in the NT Paul discusses judgment, and if there is judgment, no one is blameless.

He closes with a anti-catholic quote from the "great reformer" Martin Luther, even though Martin agreed with the Catholic Church on Grace and Baptism:

"

In these words you must note, in the first place, that here stand God's commandment and institution, lest we doubt that Baptism is divine, not devised nor invented by men. For as truly as I can say, No man has spun the Ten Commandments, the Creed, and the Lord's Prayer out of his head, but they are revealed and given by God Himself, so also I can boast that Baptism is no human trifle, but instituted by God Himself, moreover, that it is most solemnly and strictly commanded that we must be baptized or we cannot be saved, lest any one regard it as a trifling matter, like putting on a new red coat. For it is of the greatest importance that we esteem Baptism excellent, glorious, and exalted, for which we contend and fight chiefly, because the world is now so full of sects clamoring that Baptism is an external thing, and that external things are of no benefit. But let it be ever so much an external thing here stand God's Word and command which institute, establish, and confirm Baptism. But what God institutes and commands cannot be a vain, but must be a most precious thing, though in appearance it were of less value than a straw. If hitherto people could consider it a great thing when the Pope with his letters and bulls dispensed indulgences and confirmed altars and churches, solely because of the letters and seals, we ought to esteem Baptism much more highly and more precious, because God has commanded it, and, besides, it is performed in His name. For these are the words, Go ye baptize; however, not in your name, but in the name of God.

For to be baptized in the name of God is to be baptized not by men, but by God Himself. Therefore although it is performed by human hands, it is nevertheless truly God's own work. From this fact every one may himself readily infer that it is a far higher work than any work performed by a man or a saint. For what work greater than the work of God can we do?

But here the devil is busy to delude us with false appearances, and lead us away from the work of God to our own works. For there is a much more splendid appearance when a Carthusian does many great and difficult works and we all think much more of that which we do and merit ourselves. But the Scriptures teach thus: Even though we collect in one mass the works of all the monks, however splendidly they may shine, they would not be as noble and good as if God should pick up a straw. Why? Because the person is nobler and better. Here, then, we must not estimate the person according to the works, but the works according to the person, from whom they must derive their nobility. But insane reason will not regard this, and because Baptism does not shine like the works which we do, it is to be esteemed as nothing.

From this now learn a proper understanding of the subject, and how to answer the question what Baptism is, namely thus, that it is not mere ordinary water, but water comprehended in God's Word and command, and sanctified thereby, so that it is nothing else than a divine water; not that the water in itself is nobler than other water, but that God's Word and command are added.

Therefore it is pure wickedness and blasphemy of the devil that now our new spirits, to mock at Baptism, omit from it God's Word and institution, and look upon it in no other way than as water which is taken from the well, and then blather and say: How is a handful of water to help the soul? Aye, my friend, who does not know that water is water if tearing things asunder is what we are after? But how dare you thus interfere with God's order, and tear away the most precious treasure with which God has connected and enclosed it, and which He will not have separated? For the kernel in the water is God's Word or command and the name of God which is a treasure greater and nobler than heaven and earth." (Martin Luther, Larger Catechism, Ch 4)

Monday, August 27, 2007

A response from Mr. Gooch and my response to him

kmerian you may want to research the meaning of exegesis. The post you have made on your site is not an exegesis of the Scripture nor is it a reasonable refutation of my own exegesis.

I am sorry you feel that way, I thought I did alright, but I shall endeavor to do better.

It is true that the Catholic church believes tradition to be on par with scripture, however part of the reason for writing this article was to see if tradition in any way contradicts scripture. If it were to do so then either scripture or tradition would have to be false, and hence the Catholic church no longer has any foundation.

True, but you would have to be infallibly certain of your interpretation for it to completely undermine the foundation of Catholicism. And, unless you were infallibly certain, there is the possibility that you are incorrect and the RCC is correct.


(Without of course answering the question of what do we judge the Bible by, since something cannot judge itself).

Of course this would be to make the assumption that the Bible is one book written at one point in time by one author. Of course our readers are all well aware that the Bible consists of multiple writings, written over thousands of years by numerous authors. It is not a case of the Bible judging itself, but rather Paul judging Moses, or Peter judging David etc.

But the Bible as a single volume was compilied at one point in time. Also, your example of Paul judging Moses and Peter judging David. Is fine, but who judged Peter and Paul? Who identified their writings?


In response to my exegesis of Matthew 26, kmerian wrote:


Actually, I was writing in response to your inclusion of the wedding feast at Cana. And how it teaches against the real presence because when Jesus turned water into wine, it looked at tasted like wine, therefore transubstantiation is not possible. My argument to you was that was an irrelevant point because it places a limitation on God. The fact that in Matthew 26 it still looked and tasted like bread and wine means nothing but that it was taken in faith. And faith is the belief in that unseen.


Actually if you read the article I didn’t say this at all. One of the key verses in this section of the article is Matthew 26:29 “But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” Not surprisingly this verse follows verses 27 and 28. So to read it without the breaks as a more literal interpretation of the original Greek Matthew 26:27-29 reads:

And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins but I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.”

When a person is saved they are born again spiritually, not physically, but they are no longer referred to as children of the devil, or sinners, but children of God or saints. When Jesus supposedly spiritually changes the state of the fruit of the vine he does not then cease to refer to it as what it once was but rather refers to it in the present tense as still being the fruit of the vine.

True, but when the apostles became new men in Christ upon their reciept of the Holy Spirit, they were still referred to by their "old" names (with the exception of Simon Peter). The fact that Jesus called the cup "the fruit of the vine" really does not outweigh what he stated just moments before when he stated that it was his blood.



I don’t disagree that Jesus was speaking prophetically as to what was to happen at Calvary, however this does not change the fact that he referred to the drink as the fruit of the vine. To say that he was talking about a different cup when the text never suggests so would be “forcing meaning into a passage to make it fit the author’s pre-conceived notions”

Touche! My explanation, however, is plausible given the situation so we must look for larger meaning.


I also suggested that forcing a Jew to drink blood would be breaking God’s law according to Genesis 9:3-6, to which kmerian responds:

Again, this is irrelevant to the discussion on transubstantiation, because for this to be relevant, Jesus would have to be a mere man, and he was not, he was fully divine and fully man. They were not drinking or eating his human flesh.

Apparently it is not ok to shed or drink a man’s blood, but if he is fully man and fully God then God has no issue with it.

Jesus told his disciples in John 6, that this would be difficult to accept, and many left him over it. That difficulty still exists today. Jesus was no mere man, and, it is difficult to explain how his blood can be present in the wine. But in doing this Jesus gave them a way to drink blood without breaking the law.


A text without context becomes a pretext, and yet when I state such, as is the case with John 6:53, kmerian writes:

So, because this verse does not fit the Authors pre-conceived notion, it must be misinterpreted.

Apparently to put Scripture in context is to “misinterpret” Scripture.

No, of course it is not. But we can define "context" however we wish. My contention is that when we place this chapter of scripture in the context of Jesus words and actions at the last supper and Pauls words to the Corinthians as well as the historical contexts of the beliefs of the church. The larger context becomes clear.



When exegeting John 6, I make the statement:

Hence it can be seen that eating His flesh and drinking His blood are equated with beholding and believing in Him.

To which kmerian responds:

Here, we are trying to force meaning, yes, eating his flesh and drinking his blood are equated with beholding and believing in him in the Eucharist, (the bread which he would give us to eat).

Notice how the only difference in this statement is the addition of “in the Eucharist” yet at no point do these words, unlike the others, appear in the Scriptures.

That is true, they do not. But the problem I have with your interpretation of John 6 is that when Jesus says "This is my body". You are responding "No, it isn't". That is not something I am not prepared to do.


kmerian also states:

Again, the assumption is made that Jesus must be speaking figuratively, because if he is foretelling the Eucharist, the authors position falls apart. I believe Jesus is speaking literally here.

Likewise I can respond by saying that the assumption is made that Jesus must be speaking literally, because if he is speaking figuratively, kmerian’s position falls apart. Fortunately I can argue my position from the Scriptures.

You can argue it from your personal interpretation of scripture. I agree with most of your exegesis of John 6, we just separate at a certain point.


kmerian continues:

No, it means just what they said, we were not there, we don’t know Jesus’ tone or emphasis. They were there, and it was clear to them what Jesus meant. He was not speaking figuratively.

Again this is a case of “because I said so”. Remembering that this is the same person who has previously told us that Jesus, mid sentence, changed reference from one drink to another, despite no proof from the text, kmerian now states that the text has to be completely literal. The context in John 6 however is quite clearly a spiritual teaching, and even kmerian agrees with this throughout his post. That said, are a literal reading and common sense reading the same thing?

I am not arguing it has to be completly literal, Catholics believe that the Eucharist is both symbolic and literal. We have very deep understanding of that. I am arguing that there is both a literal and a spiritual context to what he is saying.


Responding to the exegesis of 1 Corinthians 10, kmerian writes:

Here, the author just glances over Pauls writings in 1 Corinthians 10, Paul states that in the bread and wine we are actually participating in the body and blood of Christ, he does not claim it is symbolic or merely a rememberance, he states it is a participation in the ACTUAL body and blood of Christ. Of course this is not Pauls ONLY reference to the Lords Supper. But it is clear why the author does not use those verses from 1 Corinthians 11 that also deal with it. Paul retells the story from the Gospels but adds this “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. ” (1 Corinthians 11:27)

This is a harsh punishment for those who have merely failed to discern a symbolic act of nothing but regular bread and wine. Paul equates these substances with the actual body and blood of the Lord. How can that be symbolic?

Notice here that NONE of the exegesis of 1 Corinthians 10 is actually dealt with, rather our attention is diverted to what the writer believes to be a strong argument for the Eucharist.

The reason I did not deal with it, is because I feel that 1 Corinthians 11, if interpreted correctly reveals the true meaning of 1 Corinthians 10.


So as not to foolishly deal with this response in the same way, let us look at 1 Corinthians 11:27 (as always in context):

23 For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread;
24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”
25 In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”
26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.
27 Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord.
28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup.
29 For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. - 1 Corinthians 11:23-29

Just a basic reading of this passage reveals some important points. The first is that we are commanded “to do this in remembrance of” Him, not, that we might have eternal life. You are also told that “as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes” not, you are working out your salvation.

Where did I ever say we were "working out our salvation"? And the Catholic celebration of the Eucharist is a proclamation of his death until he comes. You seem to have this notion that it is an either-or situation instead of a "both" situation. The Eucharist is both symbolic and literal. Both a proclamation of his death and an actual participation in that death. It is Christ, offering himself for us.


In fact in Romans 10 we read:

9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;
10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. - Romans 10:9-10

According to this passage of Scripture, having confessed that Jesus is Lord, you are saved. In 1 Corinthians 10:26 then we see that partaking in the bread and wine is a proclamation of faith in Christ made by one who is already saved.

This is proof-texting. There are many places where the Bible states we are to be saved and how. That does not mean that we can pick which way we want to be saved. The Bible actually speaks of three tenses of salvation: I am already saved (Rom. 8:24, Eph. 2:5–8), but I’m also being saved (1 Cor. 1:8, 2 Cor. 2:15, Phil. 2:12), and I have the hope that I will be saved (Rom. 5:9–10, 1 Cor. 3:12–15)


Not surprising then that the verses continue on as they do:

27 Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord.
28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup.
29 For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly.

So, if Paul is speaking strictly to the already saved here. How can they eat and drink judgment on themselves if they have already been judged? And, once again, you don't answer my concern as to why Paul would put such a dire warning on a purely symbolic act?


I appreciate the time and effort that it takes to write a response as you have done kmerian, but unfortunately I still feel the need to ask for an actual Biblical refutation of my article or an alternate exegesis of the passages given. I pray the time you spend studying will help you in understanding our Lord, and that He might use these discussions to lead you into righteousness.


And I, appreciate your time. Your exegesis of the passages is not wrong, you have a very good grasp of the symbolic nature of the Eucharist. But, it is not ONLY symbolic nor is it a either/or situation. The Eucharist is both symbolic and literal.

Friday, August 24, 2007

A rebuttal to Symphony of Scripture.

A rebuttal to: On Catholicism: The Eucharist/Transubstantiation by Shane Gooch

Raised a Roman Catholic my decision to leave the teaching to which I was accustomed was a struggle. Nevertheless the decision I had to make became increasingly clear as I began to study the Word of God for myself. In 2 Timothy we read: 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness 2 Timothy 3:16 I understood this to mean that the Bible is God’s Word and nothing that is true will contradict the things written within it. This of course was also the view put forth by the Catholic church. There is then no problem with the Church officially defining a doctrine which is not explicitly in Scripture, so long as it is not in contradiction to Scripture. Catholic.com So the question then must be, do the things taught in the Catholic church contradict what is written in the Bible?

This is a case of jumping from A to C while ignoring B. Yes, it is the Catholic position that the Bible is the Word of God and therefore nothing that is true will contradict it. But, it is also the Catholic position that the Bible is not the sole source of God's word. (2 Timothy 3:15). Scripture and Tradition go hand in hand. This author leaves that fact out and views the Bible as the sole source and rule of all things true. (Without of course answering the question of what do we judge the Bible by, since something cannot judge itself).


The Eucharist/Transubstantiation

Saint Cyril of Jerusalem, in his Catecheses, states that we “call upon God in his mercy to send his Holy Spirit upon the offerings before us, to transform the bread into the body of Christ and the wine into the blood of Christ. Whatever the Holy Spirit touches is sanctified and completely transformed”

This is true and St. Cyril wrote this in about 350AD, that date is important as you will see later.



Pope Benedict XVI on the Eucharist According to Catholic tradition, the Eucharist is central to the Christian religion. It’s quite clear that Christ taught that we should partake of the Lord’s communion, but Roman Catholicism takes that teaching a step further by the introduction of transubstantiation, that is that upon the blessing of the priest the bread and wine transform to become the body and blood of Jesus. In Matthew we read of the first communion which took place between Jesus and His disciples: 26 While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” 27 And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you; 28 for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:26-28 It is easy to see how one could take these verses to mean that Christ was actually instructing the disciples to eat His physical body and drink His physical blood. As it says in 1 Corinthians 14:33 for God is not a God of confusion… Wouldn’t one therefore expect that Christ would make sure His disciples were not confused by what He meant?

Unless he knew that they would not be confused. Remember, Jesus later would infuse them with the Holy Spirit, and that Spirit would reveal to them "all truth". (John 16:13) And, I am sure when he said "This is my body...This is my blood" it was to remind them what he had said earlier in his ministry, as recorded in John 6. Remember men asked "How can this man give us his flesh to eat ?" (John 6:52) Well, at the last supper he answered that question.


In the beginning of John the account is given of Jesus turning water into wine: 1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there; 2 and both Jesus and His disciple were invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” 4 And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.” 6 Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing twenty or thirty gallons each. 7 Jesus said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” So they filled them up to the brim. 8 And He said to them, “Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter.” So they took it to him. 9 When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom, 10 and said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now.” 11 This beginning of His signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him. John 2:1-11 In this account the indication that Jesus had physically changed the water into wine was the appearance or taste of the wine itself. In Matthew 26 however we have no such suggestion, given by the disciples or Jesus, that the bread and wine physically look and taste like flesh and blood.

This is a red herring, an excuse to infuse more scripture in an effort to make it appear that there is overwhelming scriptural evidence against the Eucharist. In bringing it up, the author places a grave limitation on Christ. Saying that God cannot spiritually change an object without there being a physical change at all. Let me ask you, dear protestants, when Jesus came into your life, did you physically change? Did your eyes change color, hair? did you get taller? Shorter? By the logic of this author, if there was no physical change then there was no change at all.



Omission does not necessarily indicate error though, hence the importance of the following verse in Matthew.
29 “But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” Matthew 26:29 Jesus does not say that the drink they are drinking is physically His blood nor does he neglect to tell us what they are physically drinking, He rather states “this fruit of the vine”. Had it actually been His blood that they drank then He also would have been causing them to sin according to the law;

Being passover there was more than just that one cup of wine, Jesus was not making a comment about what was in the cup but about what was about to happen to him. Again, this is forcing meaning into a passage to make it fit the authors pre-conceived notions

3 “Every moving thing that is alive shall be food for you; I give all to you, as I gave the green plant. 4 “Only you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 “Surely I will require your lifeblood; from every beast I will require it. And from every man, from every man’s brother I will require the life of man. 6 “Whoever shed’s man’s blood, By man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man. Genesis 9:3-6

Again, this is irrelevant to the discussion on transubstantiation, because for this to be relevant, Jesus would have to be a mere man, and he was not, he was fully divine and fully man. They were not drinking or eating his human flesh.


So to John’s gospel.

53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you. Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. John 6:53 Again, this verse alone may appear to present an open and shut case, however context need always be assessed. A careful examination of John 6 reveals the true intention of this verse.

So, because this verse does not fit the Authors pre-conceived notion, it must be misinterpreted.

25 When they found Him on the other side of the sea, they said to Him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?” 26 Jesus answered them and said, “Truly, truly I say to you, you seek Me, not because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.” Jesus begins here by declaring to the crowd, that He is to give to them food which will give them eternal life. In verse 21 He indicates that the food which they work for themselves will perish. It is the food which God works for which will give them eternal life. This can be seen in the crowd’s response.

So far, I agree.


28 Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” The crowd here acknowledges that their own works provide them with perishable food, and so they inquire of Christ how they can do God’s work. His response is that the work of God is simply believing in the One sent from God. According to verse 27 it is this “belief” which brings “…food which endures to eternal life…”

So far, still with you.

30 So they said to Him, “What then do You do for a sign, so that we may see, and believe you? What work do you perform? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread out of heaven to eat.’” 32 Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. 33 “For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” Here Jesus speaks of the bread of God as that which “…gives life to the world.” He has already established however that “life” is for those who “…believe in Him whom He has sent.” This would appear to then say that the “bread of God” (”…that which comes down out of heaven…”) is the belief in Him whom He has sent. Jesus then makes a rather bold statement.

Here, I am still with you. The bread is clearly a figure for God's revelation in Christ.
34 Then they said to Him, “Lord, always give us this bread.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst. 36 “But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe. 37 “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. 38 “For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent me. 39 “This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. 40 “For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.” Amazingly Jesus proclaims that eternal life is a gift of God, given to those who believe in the One sent from God and then proclaims Himself to be that One. He says: I am the bread of life verse 35 I have come down from heaven verse 38 And in verse 40 He goes as far as to say that He is the Son of God. The response of the Jews is not an unexpected one.

Again, I am still agreeing with the author.

41 Therefore the Jews were grumbling about Him, because He said, “I am the bread that came down out of heaven.” 42 They were saying, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does He now say, ‘I have come down out of heaven’?” 43 Jesus answered and said to them, “Do not grumble among yourselves. 44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. 45 “It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught of God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father, comes to Me. 46 “Not that anyone has seen the Father, except the One who is from God; He has seen the Father. Despite the distress from the Jews Jesus presses further proclaiming in verse 46 that He is the only One to have truly beheld God.

Yes, yes still agreeing.

47 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life. He then draws a link back to verses 27, 29, 33 and 35, that if He truly is the One sent from God then he who believes in Him has eternal life

True.

48 “I am the bread of life.

Again Jesus restates His position from verse 35

49 “Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.
50 “This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die.
51 “I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.”
52 Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, “How can this man give us His flesh to eat?”
53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves.

Having established that Jesus Himself is the One sent from God, and that everlasting life comes through belief in Him, Jesus continues to speak of this truth using the typology of the manna from heaven.


With verse 51, there is a change in subject, Jesus transitions from the bread of life being God's word in him, to the bread that he would give us to eat. With verse 50 Jesus begins his foretelling of the Eucharist.


This is made extremely clear by verse 54 when Jesus states:

54 “He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.

Here Jesus uses the same language previously used in verse 40:

40 “For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”

Hence it can be seen that eating His flesh and drinking His blood are equated with beholding and believing in Him.

Here, we are trying to force meaning, yes, eating his flesh and drinking his blood are equated with beholding and believing in him in the Eucharist, (the bread which he would give us to eat).


55 “For my flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink.
56 “He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.
57 “As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also will live because of Me.
58 “This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever,”

Again, Jesus reinforces that eternal life is gift from God given to those who believe in the One sent from God, that is Jesus Christ.

Again, the assumption is made that Jesus must be speaking figuratively, because if he is foretelling the Eucharist, the authors position falls apart. I believe Jesus is speaking literally here.

59 These things He said in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum.
60 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, “This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it?”

What was it that was so difficult for the disciples to accept? Was it that they were being told to be cannibals? Or was it that as Jews, bound by the law, the concept that this Nazarene may have not only been sent from God, but that He may actually be God made flesh, was an insult and stumbling stone to them?

No, it means just what they said, we were not there, we don't know Jesus' tone or emphasis. They were there, and it was clear to them what Jesus meant. He was not speaking figuratively.


61 But Jesus, conscious that His disciples grumbled at this, said to them, “Does this cause you to stumble?
62 “What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before?

Jesus response here makes it clear that the concern is not over whether or not His body and blood are to be physically eaten and drunk, but that He Himself is the Messiah. The sum total here seems to be “…I have come down from heaven…” (verse 38) if you don’t believe that “What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before?” (verse 62) And just to make sure that He has been clear about His spiritual teaching, He continues:

No, Jesus response here is a challenge to their faith, if they cannot believe that he can give them his flesh to eat and blood to drink, how will they accept his ascension when it happens?


63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.
64 “But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him.
65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father.”

Jesus has just made some of the most amazing claims known. That despite all their efforts to maintain the Lord’s Law, that the Jews would not see eternal life unless they put their faith in Him and His words. And so of course:

Again, I am agreeing with you.

66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore.
67 So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?”
68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.
69 “We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.”

What an amazing confession of faith. Despite many of His companions deserting him, Peter is prepared to stand up for truth and shows that he has understood and believed the words spoken by Jesus. He says “…You have the words of eternal life.” (verse 68) and “…You are the Holy One of God.” (verse 69). What a blessed truth.

Yes, it is.


What then can we make of Paul’s writings on the Lord’s supper, in his first letter to the church at Corinth?

16 Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Is not the bread which we break a sharing in the body of Christ?
17 Since there is one bread, we who are many are one body; for we all partake of the one bread.
18 Look at the nation Israel; are not those who eat the sacrifices sharers in the altar?
19 What do I mean then? That a thing sacrificed to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything?
20 No, but I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God; and I do not want you to become sharers in demons.
21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons.
1 Corinthians 10:16-21

Contextually:

1 For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea;
2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
3 and all ate the same spiritual food;
4 and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ.
5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not well pleased; for they were laid low in the wilderness.
6 Now these things happened as examples for us, so that we would not crave evil things as they also craved.
1 Corinthians 10:1-6

Was the food that the Israelites ate not physical bread? Was the drink from the rock not physical water? In Exodus 16 and 17 God physically provides His chosen people with manna from heaven and water from the rock, however Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, indicates that the bread and water are symbolic of something further. Paul reveals that the rock symbolises Christ, and therefore the water that flows from it is the spirit and life that we receive from Christ. He does not however, nor does the account of Exodus 17 indicate that the rock physically became Jesus. The Israelites physically ate bread from heaven and water from the rock, symbolising the spiritual blessing and restoration that was received through Christ. Paul then goes on in verse 16 to speak of the partaking of the wine and bread as symbolic of the spiritual blessing and restoration that was received through Christ’s suffering.

16 Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Is not the bread which we break a sharing in the body of Christ?
1 Corinthians 10:16

If that isn’t clear he maintains this sense of symbolism in the following verse:

17 Since there is one bread, we who are many are one body; for we all partake of the one bread.
1 Corinthians 10:17

Surely we cannot say that we all physically eat the one physical bread, and likewise become one physical body. No, Paul does well throughout the chapter to establish that this is spiritual.
Here, the author just glances over Pauls writings in 1 Corinthians 10, Paul states that in the bread and wine we are actually participating in the body and blood of Christ, he does not claim it is symbolic or merely a rememberance, he states it is a participation in the ACTUAL body and blood of Christ. Of course this is not Pauls ONLY reference to the Lords Supper. But it is clear why the author does not use those verses from 1 Corinthians 11 that also deal with it. Paul retells the story from the Gospels but adds this "Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. " (1 Corinthians 11:27)

This is a harsh punishment for those who have merely failed to discern a symbolic act of nothing but regular bread and wine. Paul equates these substances with the actual body and blood of the Lord. How can that be symbolic?

The reality is that we are warned in the letter to the Hebrews to avoid these teachings:

24 For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us;
25 nor was it that He would offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood that is not his own.
26 Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.
27 And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after comes judgement,
28 so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him.
Hebrews 9:24-28

Jesus Christ died as a sin offering for us. His one death was sufficient for our sanctification. The eucharist and the concept of transubstantiation render Christ’s work on Calvary as insufficient, and negate the core of the gospel. One cannot serve the God of the Bible and partake in this hideous act of idolatry.


And, the eucharist is a participation in that one sacrifice. When you truly study the Bible, you discover something, that 1 Corinthians was written prior to the Gospel of John. So Pauls writing is actually the earliest account we have of the Eucharist. So, by the time John wrote, the Eucharist was a established part of the Christian belief. When you realize that and read 1 Corinthians first, and then John, John 6 takes on a whole new (and proper) meaning. That is where true Bible Study is important. The Scriptures clearly teach that the Bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ. And it professes dire concequences on those who cannot or will not discern it.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Pope John Paul II states "Islam is not a religion of redemption"

That's right. The Pope who kissed the Qu'ran. Who Anti-Catholics claim taught that Islam is just as valid as Christianity. Sometimes I wish people would do their research.

"Some of the most beautiful names in the human language are given to the God of the Koran, but He is ultimately a God outside of the world, a God who is only Majesty, never Emmanuel, God-with-us. Islam is not a religion of redemption. There is no room for the Cross and the Resurrection. Jesus is mentioned, but only as a prophet who prepares for the last prophet, Muhammad. There is also mention of Mary, His Virgin Mother, but the tragedy of redemption is completely absent. For this reason not only the theology but also the anthropology of Islam is very distant from Christianity." (Crossing the Threshold of Hope)

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Thought I would post it here.....

This thread at CARM was deleted before I could post my response...so I will do it here, just to have the last word. (Petty I know)

[quote=Lala;1686089]proove it exegesis the whole passage and show me where Christ told you , you will concoct a magical potion that will be His flesh and blood[/quote]

Jesus didn't say that. And we don't "concoct a magical potion" statements like that just announce your ignorance of Catholicism.

I have shown you my proof, proof that Jesus said "this is my body" it is now on you to show why you think he did not mean that.

It is up to you to explain why Paul would teach such a dire consequence for a symbolic act.

It is up to you to explain why the apostles followers believed the Catholic position and not yours.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Did Mary have other Children (A discussion from CARM)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonnie

And again, there is a perfectly good word for "cousin" in Greek--anepsios, I think it is--used once in the Bible but frequently in Greek literature, that the gospel writer could have used, had these men really been Jesus' actual cousins.

And, there are greek words he could have used to leave no doubt they were his brothers by blood (such as kasignĂȘtos). The fact is, in the bible itself, the word "adelphos" is used to describe any number of relationships. So focusing on one meaning and excluding the others is trying to force meaning that may not be correct.

Quote:
If someone were to say about me, "Isn't that Bonnie, the late Naval commander's daughter? Don't we know her sister Judy?" Would that wording--the same as in the bible--mean that Judy MUST be my cousine or a stepsister, by a previous marriage of my father's? Or would the most natural way to take this mean that Judy is my very own, physical, flesh and blood sister?


But is the "natural" assumption always the correct one? My wife will tell you she has 2 sisters. Now, the "natural" assumption is that they have the same parents, correct? But now I tell you, one is a half-sister and the other is a step-sister. See? The "natural" assumption was incorrect.You are reading this passage in English with a modern notion of family. That is poor Bible interpretation. You must take into account the language used (Greek) and the time period (2nd Temple) involved. The fact is when you do this you realize that this one passage is quite ambiguous, and does not clarify one direction or the other.

Quote:
Besides, Mary's PV is NOT a salvific issue and it is nonsense that the RCC makes it one, and that one can be "anathema" for not believing it. And excommunicated, if I am not mistaken.


Belief in the PV of Mary, is often used as ammo against us by those who claim we are not Christians. And I have no doubts that if a Baptist or Pentacostal professed belief in the PV of Mary they would be anathematized by their congregation. So, apparantly the RCC is wrong to say that Christians should believe this, but protestants are not wrong in saying that if you do believe this, you are going to hell?

Quote:
And no RCCer on here has EVER given us a good reason why Mary HAD to stay a PV her entire life. I've heard, "so she could concentrate on raising Jesus." "So, she could dedicate her life to God." She couldn't do either of those things unless she stayed a virgin???


Mary was chosen for a special purpose, her womb was the gate by which our savior was to enter the world. The prophet Ezekiel stated that no one else would enter the world by that gate.

Quote:
The idea that Mary was a PV I think comes from the Protoevangelicon of James, a second century writing, in which she dedicates herself to God, vowing to remain a virgin for her entire life. However, the writing isn't inspired, since it has the wise men seeing Jesus in a cave--which were often used as stables in Palestine in those days--whereas Matthew's account clearly says they found Jesus and His mother in a HOUSE. A gross error.


Yes, and that is one of the reasons it is not canon. But, that does not make it untrue completely.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Debunking the "Gli Scavi del Dominus Flevit"



I can't tell you how many times over my years involved in Catholic Apologetics this book has been thrown in my face as "proof" that Peter was never in Rome. Despite reams of historical evidence to the contrary.


Well, recently the University of the Holy Land began investigating this and guess what? It is yet another myth perpetuated by anti-catholics. I thought I would write some on it here, because I can guarantee you that they will not edit their websites in any way. (In other words: Don't bother them with the truth, their minds are made up!)


In a blog titled "Whose son is Simon" members of the universities archaeology team began translating this inscription:


Now, according to Peterson, it reads "Simon bar Jonah" so Peterson concludes that there is only one man in Israel to ever have that name, so it must be Peter of the Bible. Never mind that by the end of his life, no one called him Simon, he is always referred to in Acts as Peter. Also, why would his fellow Christians bury him under his Jewish name and not his Christian one?

The answer of course is that they did not. UHL researchers properly translated the inscription on the ossuary as "Simon bar Zilla". Peterson relied on Bellarmino Bagatti 's translation. But according to the UHL when it came to Bagetti "not a single letter was read correctly".

So, read the article, it is very clear and concise. Once again, the anti-catholics are proved wrong. Which once again leads me to ask:

If they cannot be trusted to tell the truth about Catholicism, why should I trust them to tell the truth about Jesus?