Then you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free…

My copy of “Holy Scripture: The Ground and Pillar of Our Faith, Volume III: The Writings of the Church Fathers Affirming the Reformation Principle of Sola Scriptura” arrived in the mail a couple days ago. I don’t know exactly what I was expecting, but it’s not what I got. With a couple of kids in tow, I’ve hardly read the whole book, but I’ve skimmed a fair portion in each of the sections. What I’ve found is a lot of quotes that either are completely irrelevant to the point they’re trying to make or are taken wholly out of context. I have not found one quote that suggests to me what it does to the authors. How is it possible that someone has compiled a whole book of quotes in which they’ve bolded and emphasized sections which they think mean one thing, and then I read it and find something completely different? Someone is deceiving themselves here. So I have to ask out of fairness, is it me?

Honestly, I’m astounded. How did I transform to this perspective? If only you all could have seen me a year ago. What happened? Were my eyes opened and now I’m left gaping at everyone else wondering why they’re so blind? Is there only a sane remnant left on this planet and have I been admitted into its brotherhood? I know that Protestants think that they’re the sane ones and Catholics are blind, so how do you figure out who’s right, without automatically being biased by the emphatic “I am!!!”? Led by my over analytical nature, I sat down with Chris the other night to discuss how I might figure out whether or not I am deceiving myself, or just believing what I want to believe, or seeing what I want to see. Here’s what we came up with:

First of all, you may be somewhat certain that you’re not just believing something because you want to if you do not want to believe it. I’m sure there are always doubters who will accuse me of desiring the Catholic Church to be the true Church for whatever reason they may come up with, but this isn’t for them. I am rather convinced that this is the last thing I ever wanted. When I met my husband, Catholicism repulsed me. I debated issues with him vehemently, even without checking what the foundations of my beliefs were, because my beliefs were the only possible true beliefs! He thought we could lose our salvation, I thought the sinner’s prayer saved you once and for all. He emphasized serving the Lord, I emphasized a personal relationship. He wanted to baptize our children, I wanted to wait until they could confess their faith themselves. Talking to him about it, he even says he can’t see how a person as adamant as I was could sound like I do now. I asked him why he married me then. He felt that was what God wanted of him and so he better do it! I think I can say with reasonable certitude that I didn’t just want to believe this.

Even if you aren’t just believing because you want to, how do you know you aren’t being fooled? Assuming the beliefs in question are reasonable and self-consistent, then one way of testing the spirits is to judge them by their fruit. This may be more difficult than the simple phrase implies, and it brings up a lot of subsequent questions. Undoubtedly, I have experienced bad fruit in Protestantism in the form of radical ideology, unseemly behavior, hypocrisy, pastor veneration, self-promotion, etc. There are also people who say they’ve experienced bad fruit in Catholicism. They say everyone was just going through the routine and they experienced dead faith and corrupt priests. My theory says that this Catholic bad fruit is a result of faithless individuals and the Protestant bad fruit is an inevitable result of a corrupt system. Of course, I can’t prove that to anyone, although I may share my reasons for believing this at a later date.

I can’t judge whether or not these people who experienced Catholicism accurately understood the faith of those around them, or had any faith of their own to begin with, or why Protestantism works better for them. What I can do is relate my own experience. I was a very sincere little Christian girl. For as long as I can remember, I have loved God and wanted to do His will. I went through life trying to be good, not to win my salvation, but out of love of Christ. In high school I was a little evangelist, wearing Christian t-shirts and jewelry, taking every opportunity to share Christ with others. I was surrounded by people only pretending to be spiritual, and so backed away from the “in” crowd at my church. Meanwhile, I was still trying to be faithful. In college, I got tired of the hypocrisy, and stayed away from Churches for a few years. I still read my Bible faithfully, had little post-it notes with verses to memorize all over my apartment. Eventually I got back into a better spiritual community. That’s when I met Chris. I don’t think the bad experiences I had (which I will detail in another post soon) were a result of insufficient faith on my part. I know that there are good churches out there, and I have gone to them. But a look at the history of the Reformation and the foundations of Protestantism makes me believe there is absolutely nothing protecting Christians from these things, and the system actually encourages it.

In high contrast, Catholicism has been a haven for me. Individuals are not singled out and praised, no one person can over-run the church and lead it into heresy or insanity, and the Church is devoted in every way to serve the needs of its parishioners and of the community. Catholic Charities in the Kansas City diocese serve over 84,000 people annually. The Church has Bible lessons, community events, fellowship and they feed the poor, fight for the unborn, educate the uneducated, and love the unloved. This is just a little bit to say: I have experienced abundant good fruit in the Catholic Church, and have grown in my spiritual understanding because of it. Were the people doing the Judas shuffle (which is what my old priest called it when people duck out right after communion) just not paying attention?

As best I can determine based on reason, fruitfulness, and desires, I am not fooling myself with my current Catholic perspective. I can’t know for sure, and I can’t persuade anyone else to believe me. I’ve gotten to the point that I don’t expect to find anything that the Church cannot stand against. All I can do is be prepared to face the consequences if I should find something. If I did, I don’t know if I could return to the folds of Protestantism. Would I be a lone Christian with my Bible in the wilderness? I guess it depends on what I might find. I asked Chris what he would do, and he thought he might head to the Orthodox church down the road and have a talk with the priest there to figure it out.

Now I wonder, how is it that my perspective has changed so dramatically? And how is it that others cannot see what I see? Are those people more concerned about being right or being their own masters than learning the truth of the gospel? And who out there is willing to face evidence that challenges them to change?

I’m reminded of the via moderna saying right now: “God will not deny grace to him who does his best.” People have interpreted this phrase to mean that you can work really, really hard and get to heaven. But what if we understand “does his best” to mean “earnestly seeks God with all his heart”? In such a case, maybe that is the real key to finding the truth. Seek God earnestly and you will find Him. Become what God wants you to become and you will recognize truth when you see it.

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38 Responses to Then you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free…

  1. BJ Buracker says:

    Stacey,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a couple weeks now, and I really enjoy it. Thank you for your honesty, candor, and willingness to be vulnerable. I think you are asking a lot of good questions, and I’m glad you’re thinking and feeling through the answers.

    Needless to say, you will be in my prayers. May our Lord guide you joyfully and peacefully to the truth and church He desires, and may you serve and love Him with all heart, soul, mind, and strength in the meantime 🙂

    BJ

  2. tap says:

    Perhaps what strikes you (it did me) at first is probably the Title of the Book; “Holy Scripture: The Ground and Pillar of Our Faith
    Esp. given 1 tim 3:15 “…church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

    Anyways i’m sure you don’t want this thread of yours to ‘devolve’ into another back an forth. So i won’t say any more on the book. I would say take comfort in these words of God:

    John 10:27: “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me”

  3. Irenaeus says:

    I’ve got a lot I could (and might later) say about my similar feelings and how I ‘know’ now that Catholicism is the truth, but for now, when you say, “Catholicism has been a haven for me,” I resonate. It feels like shelter from the cacophonous mob that is Protestantism(s).

  4. Ragamuffin says:

    I have a similar conundrum to yours. I know my tendency to want to be different and in my world, Catholicism would certainly be different. About 10 years ago I became something of a Calvinist. I was convinced it was the proper way to interpret the Bible and the correct view of salvation and God’s sovereignty. It’s something of an “intellectual superiority” thing I need to deal with. I sort of liked that I understood this while others balked at it, especially those I deemed to be less rigorous about studying their faith.

    Now I find myself considering the claims of the Catholic Church in my quest for the truth. There is a lot to admire about Catholicism and it solves a lot of problems I have with contemporary evangelicalism. It’s also an intellectually rigorous and stimulating approach to the faith that I feel is lacking in much of Protestantism. And it has all but driven me from my Calvinist outpost. But I question my motives. Not only on the pride issue but on the “wanting something different” issue.

    See, the other part of wanting something different is novelty. An escape from boredom. I wonder how much of my attraction to liturgical worship and Catholicism is rooted in this restlessness of spirit that causes me to grow tired of something and seek the new. I’m tired of being that way and cannot seriously consider uprooting everything in my life unless I know it is a true motive for seeking these things and not borne of pride or boredom. I don’t want to be sitting here 10 years from now feeling a new round of restlessness and wondering where to go from there? Orthodoxy? Ok, fine. What happens when I’m tired of that? This is endless unless I’m doing it for the right reasons.

  5. Rhology says:

    I have and have read vols 1 and 2 of that series, not #3.
    Do you have #2? Perhaps you’re missing what they mean by posting those quotes.
    Many people seem to think that, when Reformed folks cite CFs, they are automatically or by default claiming that said CFs are Protestant. Such is not the case at all. Rather, in general, such citations are to show a few things:
    1) Neither were those men Roman Catholics in very many modern senses of the word at all.
    2) Neither were they modern EO-dox.
    3) They are not to be held at any level as an authority near to the level of God-inspired Scripture, since they were inconsistent with each other and with themselves, unlike Scr.

  6. tap says:

    Stacey, perhaps it would be worth your while to give 1 or 2 examples of how quotes where take out of context, or irrelevant to the point, that way you don’t get accused of making a blanket statment without proof.

    I did have a Four Part article that you might be interested in as far as immaculate conception and the Orthodox Church(with comments on the last section)

    PART I

    PART II

    PART III

    PART IV

    Don’t forget to look at comments on part 4

  7. Stacey says:

    Hey everyone. I’m sorry for my delayed response, but my house has been struck by the flu for the past several days. I hope to read through and respond today, maybe during naps!

  8. Stacey says:

    BJ,

    Thanks for your prayers 🙂

  9. Stacey says:

    Ragamuffin,

    So how do you judge whether or not you’re attracted by the novelty or by the truth of something? I know it would cost me to join the Catholic Church, as my family and friends disapprove, and the masses in general hate the Church, and she asks so much of her followers. It would cost you as well, wouldn’t it? Your wife and kids aren’t exactly happy at the prospect, right? Is the pain of the decision enough to ward of apprehensions of neophilia?

    In any case, I would suggest to you what my husband has suggested to me. Take your time, years even, and see how you feel and what you think down the road. This is a big decision, and it will cost you dearly to make it, as Christ himself tells us, so you should be sure of it.

  10. Stacey says:

    Rhology,

    I’m just wondering, why do you choose to believe the Church Fathers were inconsistent with themselves, even in the same document, instead of trying to understand them in a way such that they are self-consistent? As the men who have passed on the faith and gospel of Christ, don’t they deserve at least the benefit of the doubt that they are not schizophrenics or incompetents?

  11. Stacey says:

    Thinking more on that Irenaeus quote about the ground and pillar of the faith, I’m not altogether certain that he’s talking about the plan of salvation rather than Scripture (although that’s how I read the grammar). Even if he is talking about Scripture here, that is not un-Catholic. Catholicism does not diminish Scripture, but neither does it diminish Tradition.

    I really suggest to people that they read the entire works by the fathers, not just a compilation by someone who has something to prove. Especially, in the case of this book, Dialogue of Justin and Irenaeus’s Against Heresies. I think then, there will be little doubt as to where the Fathers stand.

    Here’s a quote from the very next section in Against Heresies:

    But, again, when we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles, [and] which is preserved by means of the succession of presbyters in the Churches, they object to tradition, saying that they themselves are wiser not merely than the presbyters, but even than the apostles, because they have discovered the unadulterated truth. For [they maintain] that the apostles intermingled the things of the law with the words of the Saviour; and that not the apostles alone, but even the Lord Himself, spoke as at one time from the Demiurge, at another from the intermediate place, and yet again from the Pleroma, but that they themselves, indubitably, unsulliedly, and purely, have knowledge of the hidden mystery: this is, indeed, to blaspheme their Creator after a most impudent manner! It comes to this, therefore, that these men do now consent neither to Scripture nor to tradition.

  12. Kepha says:

    Out of everything you wrote, what stands out to me is the question: How do I know I’m not being deceived? This question may very well be the best question you could ask yourself. Ponder it very deeply.

    Is historical verification of belief a criterion for not being deceived? Is the belief of previous generations of believers a criterion for not being deceived?

  13. Stacey says:

    kepha,

    How do I know I’m not being deceived?… Is historical verification of belief a criterion for not being deceived? Is the belief of previous generations of believers a criterion for not being deceived?

    Yes, these are the basic questions that get the likes of Aristotle, Des Cartes, and Plato spinning our wheels. Personally, I think Aristotle was onto something when he said that truth must be universal and self-consistent. With those two things as guides, Christianity comes out on top, and I’m beginning to think Catholicism at the top of that. Then the answers to your questions are “yes”, it does matter what previous generations believed, since God’s truth must be available to everyone in all lifetimes. Likewise, his Church cannot have disappeared or he would be not only a liar in his promise that the gates of hell would not prevail against it, but also be denying His very nature that has called us all to be saved.

  14. tap says:

    Glad you’re finding these things out. Irenaeus is referring to both “Spoken and written” Tradition as it were.

    I worry about those who don’t have the time or resources to compare quotes like the ones from Augustin that are taken out of context. Where he speaks of the authority of the Church on an issue which he disagrees with Cyprian.[ A point which i made earlier in a different thread.]

    Others even if they have the time and resource, somehow create an artificial barrier in their minds, to avoid investigating the issue. Its a “i want to feel comfortable where i am” kind of mentallity.

    But then again who am i to speak? I consider myself lucky being a born into a Catholic Family, perhaps i would have been just as “stubborn” if i was born into a protestant family.

    Speedy recovery,

  15. Rhology says:

    Stacey,

    Hope you and your family are recovering. Don’t let blogging get in the way of necessary rest and recovery! 🙂

    I am sympathetic to your question, and as someone who spends most of my blogtime dealing with atheists and skeptics, who spend a decent amount of their own time trying to poke holes in the Bible, I can understand the spirit in which it is raised. We must give authors the benefit of the doubt, attempt to harmonise them where possible, it is true.
    1) There is no reason to consider these men as inspired messengers of God, guaranteed inerrancy by virtue of their speaking the very words of the infallible and omniscient God. In this respect their writings differ from the Bible.
    2) Thing is, I really do find the inconsistencies impossible to reconcile, especially between this man and that man, and to a lesser extent, from time to time, internal to one man’s own writings at one time in his life over and against that of another time in his life. That’s to be expected, really – people are just a vapor, a passing transience. God’s Word is meant to last forever.

    A good illustration is to take specific examples and see how they could possibly be reconciled. I suggest this post as a good first example.

    Peace,
    Rhology

  16. Wintrowski says:

    Rhology,

    It’s actually good to read a pleasant, coherent comment from you that is not spewing forth venom.

    1) There is no reason to consider these men as inspired messengers of God, guaranteed inerrancy by virtue of their speaking the very words of the infallible and omniscient God. In this respect their writings differ from the Bible.

    Nobody is suggesting otherwise.

    2) Thing is, I really do find the inconsistencies impossible to reconcile, especially between this man and that man, and to a lesser extent, from time to time, internal to one man’s own writings at one time in his life over and against that of another time in his life. That’s to be expected, really – people are just a vapor, a passing transience. God’s Word is meant to last forever.

    With no malicious intent, I’ve been wondering why it is so hard for you to reconcile the theological differences between both the Church Fathers themselves, and the Catholic Church of our time, when many Reformation churches today do not even ascribe to everything Martin Luther taught and believed, nor are they consistent with themselves or even, arguably, with the Bible itself.

    I know there is this idea among Protestants that the Catholic Church believes in something called Tradition, and that this Tradition evidently does not exist because, for example, the Church Fathers did not always agree on certain matters (e.g. the re-baptism of apostates and schismatics). Perhaps this is the main reason, perhaps it is not, so maybe you could elaborate a little on why you find such inconsistencies irreconcilable?

  17. Rhology says:

    Nobody is suggesting otherwise.

    Au contraire, that is qualitatively about the same as the partim-partim view, which is a permissible view in RCC.

    Perhaps this is the main reason, perhaps it is not, so maybe you could elaborate a little on why you find such inconsistencies irreconcilable?

    The ones that are irreconcilable are thus b/c of what they teach. Nothing more, nothing less.
    But RCC has made it clear, such as in Vatican 2, that it believes it holds to the “ancient and constant faith of the universal church”, at least in certain matters, and sometimes it is just not the case that RC dogma in said matters has been the ancient and constant faith of the univ church, nor in the Scr.
    Does that help?
    I don’t understand your point, actually. I doubt you’re saying that everything any CF ever wrote is harmonisable, so I must be missing you. Please elucidate when you can.

  18. tap says:

    Wintroski, The main problem “they” have. Is not recognizing that its not just what the Church Fathers believed, It is what the believed in unanimity, i.e For example, if CF1 believed in A while CF2 believed B, and there is an effort to resolve the issue, there has to be a synod and council (meeting the approval of the Bishop of Rome)to resolve the issue Re; Acts 15. Just as in that quote that Stacey posted, Augustine was admonishing someone who claimed Cyprian as witness for his own doctrine. Augustine rightly retorted, [paraphrasing now] that neither Cyprian nor Augustine is infallible, but the Church as a whole i.e what the Church is truth is truth.

    Rhology, could you give an example of a Church father that denied the Real Presence?

  19. Wintrowski says:

    Rhology,

    that is qualitatively about the same as the partim-partim view, which is a permissible view in RCC.

    I’m not sure I see how it follows from a “partim-partim” perspective that the Church Fathers are to be regarded as being of the same Divine calibre as Scripture. That there are revealed truths not contained in Scripture does not necessarily imply that those revealed truths cover every possible question of Church doctrine, which is why one can see the Fathers trying to hammer out an issue in different ways.

    But RCC has made it clear, such as in Vatican 2, that it believes it holds to the “ancient and constant faith of the universal church”, at least in certain matters, and sometimes it is just not the case that RC dogma in said matters has been the ancient and constant faith of the univ church, nor in the Scr.

    Right, there are many, many elements of the Catholic faith which are ancient and constant, and the Church Fathers, for the most part, fall within that pale of orthodoxy. But some issues were left open for discussion for a long time until a consensus was reached (and, yes, some of the Church Fathers believed differently from what the Church ultimately decided on certain matters).

    Again, I don’t see how that is a problem, unless you regard the Tradition of the Catholic Church as some sort of all-encompassing lexicon of answers to every possible doctrinal question with regard to faith and morals.

    I don’t understand your point, actually. I doubt you’re saying that everything any CF ever wrote is harmonisable, so I must be missing you. Please elucidate when you can.

    Well, I’m really just trying to nail down your conceptions of Catholic Tradition and how it relates to the Church Fathers, and vice versa, with a view to making an honest attempt at trying to understand your objections to Catholicism. My suspicion is that, perhaps, you have an incorrect idea of what the Tradition of the Church actually is, and how the Church Fathers fit into that.

    I am also trying to understand your objections on this particular issue relating to the Church Fathers because you still are comfortable with the Reformed faith, despite its deviations from Scripture and inability to find consistent answers to questions of faith and morals.

  20. Wintrowski says:

    Rhology,

    that is qualitatively about the same as the partim-partim view, which is a permissible view in RCC.

    I’m not sure I see how it follows from a “partim-partim” perspective that the Church Fathers are to be regarded as being of the same Divine calibre as Scripture. That there are revealed truths not contained in Scripture does not necessarily imply that those revealed truths cover every possible question of Church doctrine, which is why one can see the Fathers trying to hammer out an issue in different ways.

    But RCC has made it clear, such as in Vatican 2, that it believes it holds to the “ancient and constant faith of the universal church”, at least in certain matters, and sometimes it is just not the case that RC dogma in said matters has been the ancient and constant faith of the univ church, nor in the Scr.

    Right, there are many, many elements of the Catholic faith which are ancient and constant, and the Church Fathers, for the most part, fall within that pale of orthodoxy. But some issues were left open for discussion for a long time until a consensus was reached (and, yes, some of the Church Fathers believed differently from what the Church ultimately decided on certain matters).

    Again, I don’t see how that is a problem, unless you regard the Tradition of the Catholic Church as some sort of all-encompassing lexicon of answers to every possible doctrinal question with regard to faith and morals.

    I don’t understand your point, actually. I doubt you’re saying that everything any CF ever wrote is harmonisable, so I must be missing you. Please elucidate when you can.

    Well, I’m really just trying to nail down your conceptions of Catholic Tradition and how it relates to the Church Fathers, and vice versa, with a view to making an honest attempt at trying to understand your objections to Catholicism. My suspicion is that, perhaps, you have an incorrect idea of what the Tradition of the Church actually is, and how the Church Fathers fit into that.

    I am also trying to understand your objections on this particular issue relating to the Church Fathers because you still are comfortable with the Reformed faith, despite its deviations from Scripture and inability to find consistent answers to questions of faith and morals.

  21. Rhology says:

    tap,

    Sorry for the blockpaste here.

    Cyprian apparently didn’t believe in transubstantiation. When arguing against those who wanted to use water alone rather than water mixed with wine in communion, Cyprian responds by referring to how water mixed with wine more accurately *represents* the blood of Christ. He says that the blood of Christ is made to *appear* to be in the cup by wine being in the cup. He goes on to describe the *drinking* of wine by Noah and other Old Testament figures as similar to Christian communion, thus suggesting that Cyprian saw the wine as remaining wine even when Christians drink it. Notice that he repeatedly refers to wine *and* blood together. He refers to the water in the communion cup as signifying the people of the world, citing Revelation 17:15. He obviously didn’t think that the water was transubstantiated into people. Whatever view of the eucharist Cyprian held, and we aren’t sure what it was, it wasn’t transubstantiation:

    “For when Christ says, ‘I am the true vine.’ the blood of Christ is assuredly not water, but wine; neither can His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened appear to be in the cup, when in the cup there is no wine whereby the blood of Christ is shown forth, which is declared by the sacrament and testimony of all the Scriptures. For we find in Genesis also, in respect of the sacrament in Noe, this same thing was to them a precursor and figure of the Lord’s passion; that he drank wine; that he was drunken; that he was made naked in his household; that he was lying down with his thighs naked and exposed; that the nakedness of the father was observed by his second son, and was told abroad, but was covered by two, the eldest and the youngest; and other matters which it is not necessary to follow out, since this is enough for us to embrace alone, that Noe, setting forth a type of the future truth, did not drink water, but wine, and thus expressed the figure of the passion of the Lord….For who is more a priest of the most high God than our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered a sacrifice to God the Father, and offered that very same thing which Melchizedek had offered, that is, bread and wine, to wit, His body and blood?…Moreover the Holy Spirit by Solomon shows before the type of the Lord’s sacrifice, making mention of the immolated victim, and of the bread and wine, and, moreover, of the altar and of the apostles, and says, ‘Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath underlaid her seven pillars; she hath killed her victims; she hath mingled her wine in the chalice; she hath also furnished her table: and she hath sent forth her servants, calling together with a lofty announcement to her cup, saying, Whoso is simple, let him turn to me; and to those that want understanding she hath said, Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled for you.’ He declares the wine mingled, that is, he foretells with prophetic voice the cup of the Lord mingled with water and wine, that it may appear that that was done in our Lord’s passion which had been before predicted….To which things divine Scripture adds, and says, ‘He shall wash His garment in wine, and His clothing in the blood of the grape.’ But when the blood of the grape is mentioned, what else is set forth than the wine of the cup of the blood of the Lord?…The treading also, and pressure of the wine-press, is repeatedly dwelt on; because just as the drinking of wine cannot be attained to unless the bunch of grapes be first trodden and pressed, so neither could we drink the blood of Christ unless Christ had first been trampled upon and pressed, and had first drunk the cup of which He should also give believers to drink….In which portion we find that the cup which the Lord offered was mixed, and that that was wine which He called His blood. Whence it appears that the blood of Christ is not offered if there be no wine in the cup…the divine Scripture in the Apocalypse declares that the waters signify the people, saying, ‘The waters which thou sawest, upon which the whore sitteth, are peoples and multitudes, and nations of the Gentiles, and tongues,’ which we evidently see to be contained also in the sacrament of the cup. For because Christ bore us all, in that He also bore our sins, we see that in the water is understood the people, but in the wine is showed the blood of Christ. But when the water is mingled in the cup with wine, the people is made one with Christ, and the assembly of believers is associated and conjoined with Him on whom it believes; which association and conjunction of water and wine is so mingled in the Lord’s cup, that that mixture cannot any more be separated….But the discipline of all religion and truth is overturned, unless what is spiritually prescribed be faithfully observed; unless indeed any one should fear in the morning sacrifices, lest by the taste of wine he should be redolent of the blood of Christ.” (Letter 62:2-7, 62:9, 62:12-13, 62:15)

    W,

    I’m not sure I see how it follows from a “partim-partim” perspective that the Church Fathers are to be regarded as being of the same Divine calibre as Scripture.

    Well, then, of what else besides such writings does Sacred Tradition consist?

    the Reformed faith, despite its deviations from Scripture

    What is your best example of where the Reformed faith has deviated from Scr? Just one, your best, please.

  22. Rhology says:

    tap,

    Sorry for the blockpaste here.

    Cyprian apparently didn’t believe in transubstantiation. When arguing against those who wanted to use water alone rather than water mixed with wine in communion, Cyprian responds by referring to how water mixed with wine more accurately *represents* the blood of Christ. He says that the blood of Christ is made to *appear* to be in the cup by wine being in the cup. He goes on to describe the *drinking* of wine by Noah and other Old Testament figures as similar to Christian communion, thus suggesting that Cyprian saw the wine as remaining wine even when Christians drink it. Notice that he repeatedly refers to wine *and* blood together. He refers to the water in the communion cup as signifying the people of the world, citing Revelation 17:15. He obviously didn’t think that the water was transubstantiated into people. Whatever view of the eucharist Cyprian held, and we aren’t sure what it was, it wasn’t transubstantiation:

    “For when Christ says, ‘I am the true vine.’ the blood of Christ is assuredly not water, but wine; neither can His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened appear to be in the cup, when in the cup there is no wine whereby the blood of Christ is shown forth, which is declared by the sacrament and testimony of all the Scriptures. For we find in Genesis also, in respect of the sacrament in Noe, this same thing was to them a precursor and figure of the Lord’s passion; that he drank wine; that he was drunken; that he was made naked in his household; that he was lying down with his thighs naked and exposed; that the nakedness of the father was observed by his second son, and was told abroad, but was covered by two, the eldest and the youngest; and other matters which it is not necessary to follow out, since this is enough for us to embrace alone, that Noe, setting forth a type of the future truth, did not drink water, but wine, and thus expressed the figure of the passion of the Lord….For who is more a priest of the most high God than our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered a sacrifice to God the Father, and offered that very same thing which Melchizedek had offered, that is, bread and wine, to wit, His body and blood?…Moreover the Holy Spirit by Solomon shows before the type of the Lord’s sacrifice, making mention of the immolated victim, and of the bread and wine, and, moreover, of the altar and of the apostles, and says, ‘Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath underlaid her seven pillars; she hath killed her victims; she hath mingled her wine in the chalice; she hath also furnished her table: and she hath sent forth her servants, calling together with a lofty announcement to her cup, saying, Whoso is simple, let him turn to me; and to those that want understanding she hath said, Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled for you.’ He declares the wine mingled, that is, he foretells with prophetic voice the cup of the Lord mingled with water and wine, that it may appear that that was done in our Lord’s passion which had been before predicted….To which things divine Scripture adds, and says, ‘He shall wash His garment in wine, and His clothing in the blood of the grape.’ But when the blood of the grape is mentioned, what else is set forth than the wine of the cup of the blood of the Lord?…The treading also, and pressure of the wine-press, is repeatedly dwelt on; because just as the drinking of wine cannot be attained to unless the bunch of grapes be first trodden and pressed, so neither could we drink the blood of Christ unless Christ had first been trampled upon and pressed, and had first drunk the cup of which He should also give believers to drink….In which portion we find that the cup which the Lord offered was mixed, and that that was wine which He called His blood. Whence it appears that the blood of Christ is not offered if there be no wine in the cup…the divine Scripture in the Apocalypse declares that the waters signify the people, saying, ‘The waters which thou sawest, upon which the whore sitteth, are peoples and multitudes, and nations of the Gentiles, and tongues,’ which we evidently see to be contained also in the sacrament of the cup. For because Christ bore us all, in that He also bore our sins, we see that in the water is understood the people, but in the wine is showed the blood of Christ. But when the water is mingled in the cup with wine, the people is made one with Christ, and the assembly of believers is associated and conjoined with Him on whom it believes; which association and conjunction of water and wine is so mingled in the Lord’s cup, that that mixture cannot any more be separated….But the discipline of all religion and truth is overturned, unless what is spiritually prescribed be faithfully observed; unless indeed any one should fear in the morning sacrifices, lest by the taste of wine he should be redolent of the blood of Christ.” (Letter 62:2-7, 62:9, 62:12-13, 62:15)

    W,

    I’m not sure I see how it follows from a “partim-partim” perspective that the Church Fathers are to be regarded as being of the same Divine calibre as Scripture.

    Well, then, of what else besides such writings does Sacred Tradition consist?

    the Reformed faith, despite its deviations from Scripture

    What is your best example of where the Reformed faith has deviated from Scr? Just one, your best, please.

  23. Wintrowski says:

    Rhology,

    Well, then, of what else besides such writings does Sacred Tradition consist?

    Good question. I really want to understand why a lot of people (Protestants and Catholics) have problems with the notion of Sacred Tradition. Here’s my current hypothesis.

    Sacred Tradition can’t be put into a nice little box and weighed and quantified, it can’t be reduced to a list of points or codified as a list of texts by revered writers, nor anything else that our 21st Century materialist mindsets automatically want to see.

    Sacred Tradition, as the following quotes from the Catechism explain, is more like an organic, living process where the Faith is sustained and grown through the minds of living Catholics, and preserved in time by the living Bishops who carry on the teaching authority of the Apostles.

    By virtue of the fact that it exists in time, Sacred Tradition is not a rigid, ossified thing like Sacred Scripture, but is more like a concerto that is progressing unto eternity.

    Sacred Tradition is kind of like the living witness to Sacred Scripture, and it carries on the manner and reality of the living Faith, as originally received from the Apostles, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit who brings to light the fullness of the truth already present in the Church.

    It is the expression of the Faith by the Church, it is the transmission of the Faith by the Church, it is the guidance of the Church into the fullness of the truth by the Holy Spirit. It is not just the writings of the Church Fathers, nor is it some form of esoteric Gnostic secret knowledge that only the Bishops know about.

    As the Catechism explains:

    77 “In order that the full and living Gospel might always be preserved in the Church the apostles left bishops as their successors. They gave them their own position of teaching authority.” Indeed, “the apostolic preaching, which is expressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the end of time.”

    78 This living transmission, accomplished in the Holy Spirit, is called Tradition, since it is distinct from Sacred Scripture, though closely connected to it. Through Tradition, “the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes.” “The sayings of the holy Fathers are a witness to the life-giving presence of this Tradition, showing how its riches are poured out in the practice and life of the Church, in her belief and her prayer.”

    […]

    81 “Sacred Scripture is the speech of God as it is put down in writing under the breath of the Holy Spirit.”

    “and [Holy] Tradition transmits in its entirety the Word of God which has been entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. It transmits it to the successors of the apostles so that, enlightened by the Spirit of truth, they may faithfully preserve, expound and spread it abroad by their preaching.”

    82 As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, “does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honoured with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence.”

    83 The Tradition here in question comes from the apostles and hands on what they received from Jesus’ teaching and example and what they learned from the Holy Spirit. the first generation of Christians did not yet have a written New Testament, and the New Testament itself demonstrates the process of living Tradition.

    Tradition is to be distinguished from the various theological, disciplinary, liturgical or devotional traditions, born in the local churches over time. These are the particular forms, adapted to different places and times, in which the great Tradition is expressed. In the light of Tradition, these traditions can be retained, modified or even abandoned under the guidance of the Church’s Magisterium.

    Perhaps that helps, perhaps it doesn’t. There seems to be this tendency to want to say specifically what Sacred Tradition is and exactly what it contains, but Sacred Tradition should be better thought of in terms of what it does as opposed to what it is because, even though Sacred Tradition exists, it does not exist in some sort of physical, graspable form like the Bible.

    You also asked:

    What is your best example of where the Reformed faith has deviated from Scr? Just one, your best, please.

    The Biblical belief that Christ himself is present in the Lord’s Supper. The Reformed faith deviates from Scripture by attempting to spiritualize away the words of Christ when he said, “this is my body… this is my blood”. The same goes for the Reformed faith’s spiritual white-washing of baptism.

    There is also the issue that I had mentioned of the Reformed faith’s inability to find consistent answers to questions of faith and morals. If you are willing to accept as much divergence of views as there is in the Reformed churches on issues of faith and morals (and, as I tried to point out, most modern Reformed churches don’t even line up with the views and beliefs of their original reformers), then why do you find the Church Fathers and modern Catholicism so irreconcilable?

  24. Wintrowski says:

    Rhology,

    Well, then, of what else besides such writings does Sacred Tradition consist?

    Good question. I really want to understand why a lot of people (Protestants and Catholics) have problems with the notion of Sacred Tradition. Here’s my current hypothesis.

    Sacred Tradition can’t be put into a nice little box and weighed and quantified, it can’t be reduced to a list of points or codified as a list of texts by revered writers, nor anything else that our 21st Century materialist mindsets automatically want to see.

    Sacred Tradition, as the following quotes from the Catechism explain, is more like an organic, living process where the Faith is sustained and grown through the minds of living Catholics, and preserved in time by the living Bishops who carry on the teaching authority of the Apostles.

    By virtue of the fact that it exists in time, Sacred Tradition is not a rigid, ossified thing like Sacred Scripture, but is more like a concerto that is progressing unto eternity.

    Sacred Tradition is kind of like the living witness to Sacred Scripture, and it carries on the manner and reality of the living Faith, as originally received from the Apostles, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit who brings to light the fullness of the truth already present in the Church.

    It is the expression of the Faith by the Church, it is the transmission of the Faith by the Church, it is the guidance of the Church into the fullness of the truth by the Holy Spirit. It is not just the writings of the Church Fathers, nor is it some form of esoteric Gnostic secret knowledge that only the Bishops know about.

    As the Catechism explains:

    77 “In order that the full and living Gospel might always be preserved in the Church the apostles left bishops as their successors. They gave them their own position of teaching authority.” Indeed, “the apostolic preaching, which is expressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the end of time.”

    78 This living transmission, accomplished in the Holy Spirit, is called Tradition, since it is distinct from Sacred Scripture, though closely connected to it. Through Tradition, “the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes.” “The sayings of the holy Fathers are a witness to the life-giving presence of this Tradition, showing how its riches are poured out in the practice and life of the Church, in her belief and her prayer.”

    […]

    81 “Sacred Scripture is the speech of God as it is put down in writing under the breath of the Holy Spirit.”

    “and [Holy] Tradition transmits in its entirety the Word of God which has been entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. It transmits it to the successors of the apostles so that, enlightened by the Spirit of truth, they may faithfully preserve, expound and spread it abroad by their preaching.”

    82 As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, “does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honoured with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence.”

    83 The Tradition here in question comes from the apostles and hands on what they received from Jesus’ teaching and example and what they learned from the Holy Spirit. the first generation of Christians did not yet have a written New Testament, and the New Testament itself demonstrates the process of living Tradition.

    Tradition is to be distinguished from the various theological, disciplinary, liturgical or devotional traditions, born in the local churches over time. These are the particular forms, adapted to different places and times, in which the great Tradition is expressed. In the light of Tradition, these traditions can be retained, modified or even abandoned under the guidance of the Church’s Magisterium.

    Perhaps that helps, perhaps it doesn’t. There seems to be this tendency to want to say specifically what Sacred Tradition is and exactly what it contains, but Sacred Tradition should be better thought of in terms of what it does as opposed to what it is because, even though Sacred Tradition exists, it does not exist in some sort of physical, graspable form like the Bible.

    You also asked:

    What is your best example of where the Reformed faith has deviated from Scr? Just one, your best, please.

    The Biblical belief that Christ himself is present in the Lord’s Supper. The Reformed faith deviates from Scripture by attempting to spiritualize away the words of Christ when he said, “this is my body… this is my blood”. The same goes for the Reformed faith’s spiritual white-washing of baptism.

    There is also the issue that I had mentioned of the Reformed faith’s inability to find consistent answers to questions of faith and morals. If you are willing to accept as much divergence of views as there is in the Reformed churches on issues of faith and morals (and, as I tried to point out, most modern Reformed churches don’t even line up with the views and beliefs of their original reformers), then why do you find the Church Fathers and modern Catholicism so irreconcilable?

  25. Stacey says:

    Rhology,

    Thanks for that quote. It’s a good example of what I was talking about; how you can read one thing and I can read it and see something completely different.

    Let me see if I have this right. You think that when Cyprian was arguing that wine ought to be used for the Eucharist instead of water and went on citing his reasons, that his language means he thought Christ was not actually present in the Eucharist? In your post on the Church Fathers contradicting themselves, kaycee and I were discussing transubstantiation. It may help to know where I’m coming from to read that. Wine and bread are the species under which the body and blood is actually present. It’s such a thing that the physical matter remains, but the essence or nature is completely changed. Although, that may not come into the issue here as much.

    Here’s a line that you read to say the blood of Christ only appears in the cup, right?

    “neither can His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened appear to be in the cup, when in the cup there is no wine whereby the blood of Christ is shown forth, which is declared by the sacrament and testimony of all the Scriptures”
    and
    “the blood of Christ is not offered if there be no wine in the cup”

    I read that to say that if there is no wine, then his blood is not present, and only if. It also seems to be saying that he believes the Scriptures give testimony to this sacrament whereby Christ’s blood is “shown forth” through wine.

    I also read, when he says “bread and wine, to wit, His body and blood” that he believes the bread and wine is His body and blood.

    Same here:
    “But when the blood of the grape is mentioned, what else is set forth than the wine of the cup of the blood of the Lord”
    and
    “neither could we drink the blood of Christ”

    Here he says: “and that that was wine which He called His blood”. Do you mean to say he only “called” it His blood and nothing more? As for me, what Christ calls something, that’s what it is!

    And here, do you mean to say that the blood is only “showed” to be blood, but is not actually blood? “but in the wine is showed the blood of Christ” I see that as an unnecessary conclusion, since we are showed things that are real by God. Especially in light of the rest of the quotes.

    Cyprian also says about the Eucharist:

    As the prayer proceeds, we ask and say: ‘Give us this day our daily bread.’ This can be understood both spiritually and simply, because either understanding is of profit in divine usefulness for salvation. For Christ is the bread of life and the bread here is of all, but is ours. And as we say ‘Our Father,’ because He is the Father of those who understand and believe, so too we say ‘our Bread,’ because Christ is the bread of those of us who attain to His body. Moreover, we ask that this bread be given daily, lest we, who are in Christ and receive the Eucharist daily as food of salvation, with the intervention of some more grievous sin, while we are shut off and as non-communicants are kept from the heavenly bread, be separated from the body of Christ as He Himself declares, saying: ‘I am the bread of life which came down from heaven. If any man eat of my bread he shall live forever. Moreover, the bread that I shall give is my flesh for the life of the world.’ Since then He says that, if anyone eats of His bread, he lives forever, as it is manifest that they live who attain to His body and receive the Eucharist by right of communion, so on the other hand we must fear and pray lest anyone, while he is cut off and separated from the body of Christ, remain apart from salvation, as He Himself threatens, saying: ‘Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you shall not have life in you.’ And so we petition that our bread, that is Christ, be given us daily, so that we, who abide and live in Christ, may not withdraw from His sanctification and body.”,
    [The Lord’s Prayer, chapter 18]

    For if Jesus Christ Our Lord and God is Himself the chief priest of God the Father, and has first offered Himself a sacrifice to the Father, and has commanded that this be done in commemoration of Himself, certainly the priest truly discharges the office of Christ, who imitates what Christ did; and he offers a true and full sacrifice in the Church to God the Father, when he proceeds to offer it according to what he sees Christ Himself to have offered” [Letters 63:14]

    Spurning and despising all these warnings, before their sins have been expiated, before confession of their crime has been made, before their conscience has been purged by the sacrifice and hand of the priest, before the offense of an angry and threatening Lord has been appeased, violence is done to His body and blood, and they sin more against the Lord with their hands and mouth than when they denied the Lord.
    [The Lapsed, Ch 16]

    Rhology, do you then think he did not believe the body and blood of Christ was actually present? Do you still read it differently than I do? And if you do, what is your explanation for the very different reading of it? Do you think I am only seeing what I want to see?

  26. Stacey says:

    Rhology,

    Thanks for that quote. It’s a good example of what I was talking about; how you can read one thing and I can read it and see something completely different.

    Let me see if I have this right. You think that when Cyprian was arguing that wine ought to be used for the Eucharist instead of water and went on citing his reasons, that his language means he thought Christ was not actually present in the Eucharist? In your post on the Church Fathers contradicting themselves, kaycee and I were discussing transubstantiation. It may help to know where I’m coming from to read that. Wine and bread are the species under which the body and blood is actually present. It’s such a thing that the physical matter remains, but the essence or nature is completely changed. Although, that may not come into the issue here as much.

    Here’s a line that you read to say the blood of Christ only appears in the cup, right?

    “neither can His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened appear to be in the cup, when in the cup there is no wine whereby the blood of Christ is shown forth, which is declared by the sacrament and testimony of all the Scriptures”
    and
    “the blood of Christ is not offered if there be no wine in the cup”

    I read that to say that if there is no wine, then his blood is not present, and only if. It also seems to be saying that he believes the Scriptures give testimony to this sacrament whereby Christ’s blood is “shown forth” through wine.

    I also read, when he says “bread and wine, to wit, His body and blood” that he believes the bread and wine is His body and blood.

    Same here:
    “But when the blood of the grape is mentioned, what else is set forth than the wine of the cup of the blood of the Lord”
    and
    “neither could we drink the blood of Christ”

    Here he says: “and that that was wine which He called His blood”. Do you mean to say he only “called” it His blood and nothing more? As for me, what Christ calls something, that’s what it is!

    And here, do you mean to say that the blood is only “showed” to be blood, but is not actually blood? “but in the wine is showed the blood of Christ” I see that as an unnecessary conclusion, since we are showed things that are real by God. Especially in light of the rest of the quotes.

    Cyprian also says about the Eucharist:

    As the prayer proceeds, we ask and say: ‘Give us this day our daily bread.’ This can be understood both spiritually and simply, because either understanding is of profit in divine usefulness for salvation. For Christ is the bread of life and the bread here is of all, but is ours. And as we say ‘Our Father,’ because He is the Father of those who understand and believe, so too we say ‘our Bread,’ because Christ is the bread of those of us who attain to His body. Moreover, we ask that this bread be given daily, lest we, who are in Christ and receive the Eucharist daily as food of salvation, with the intervention of some more grievous sin, while we are shut off and as non-communicants are kept from the heavenly bread, be separated from the body of Christ as He Himself declares, saying: ‘I am the bread of life which came down from heaven. If any man eat of my bread he shall live forever. Moreover, the bread that I shall give is my flesh for the life of the world.’ Since then He says that, if anyone eats of His bread, he lives forever, as it is manifest that they live who attain to His body and receive the Eucharist by right of communion, so on the other hand we must fear and pray lest anyone, while he is cut off and separated from the body of Christ, remain apart from salvation, as He Himself threatens, saying: ‘Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you shall not have life in you.’ And so we petition that our bread, that is Christ, be given us daily, so that we, who abide and live in Christ, may not withdraw from His sanctification and body.”,
    [The Lord’s Prayer, chapter 18]

    For if Jesus Christ Our Lord and God is Himself the chief priest of God the Father, and has first offered Himself a sacrifice to the Father, and has commanded that this be done in commemoration of Himself, certainly the priest truly discharges the office of Christ, who imitates what Christ did; and he offers a true and full sacrifice in the Church to God the Father, when he proceeds to offer it according to what he sees Christ Himself to have offered” [Letters 63:14]

    Spurning and despising all these warnings, before their sins have been expiated, before confession of their crime has been made, before their conscience has been purged by the sacrifice and hand of the priest, before the offense of an angry and threatening Lord has been appeased, violence is done to His body and blood, and they sin more against the Lord with their hands and mouth than when they denied the Lord.
    [The Lapsed, Ch 16]

    Rhology, do you then think he did not believe the body and blood of Christ was actually present? Do you still read it differently than I do? And if you do, what is your explanation for the very different reading of it? Do you think I am only seeing what I want to see?

  27. Stacey says:

    Rhology,

    Thanks for your earlier get well wishes, we’re all doing much better although I’m suffering from caffeine withdrawal headaches, since I can’t stomach coffee right now.

    I agree with your point that the CF aren’t like Scriptures. Every word they say is not infallible. They are people with opinions. It helps to know how you approach the CF and how you try to reconcile what they say with other things in understanding them. Thanks.

  28. Stacey says:

    Rhology,

    Thanks for your earlier get well wishes, we’re all doing much better although I’m suffering from caffeine withdrawal headaches, since I can’t stomach coffee right now.

    I agree with your point that the CF aren’t like Scriptures. Every word they say is not infallible. They are people with opinions. It helps to know how you approach the CF and how you try to reconcile what they say with other things in understanding them. Thanks.

  29. tap says:

    Rhology,
    Stacey has pretty much answered you. For the sake of Charity, i will assume that you didn’t really understand the quote from Cyprian, but instead pasted something from something you saw from William Webster and David T. Kings book.

    The quote itself says nothing of Cyprian rejecting the Real Presence. Its an argument against those of his day who wanted to mix water with win (for whatever reason), and It actually fortifies what the Catholic Church teaches today, that it must be wine, not water, not grape juice, not orange drink, not coolaid, but wine. In other words St. Cyprian is saying that in order for Transubstantiation(metousiosis) to occur, the “species” must be wine

  30. tap says:

    Rhology,
    Stacey has pretty much answered you. For the sake of Charity, i will assume that you didn’t really understand the quote from Cyprian, but instead pasted something from something you saw from William Webster and David T. Kings book.

    The quote itself says nothing of Cyprian rejecting the Real Presence. Its an argument against those of his day who wanted to mix water with win (for whatever reason), and It actually fortifies what the Catholic Church teaches today, that it must be wine, not water, not grape juice, not orange drink, not coolaid, but wine. In other words St. Cyprian is saying that in order for Transubstantiation(metousiosis) to occur, the “species” must be wine

  31. tap says:

    btw here is the link to the whole letter:

    hhttp://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf05.iv.iv.lxii.html

    I think you might be very interested in Paragraph 11

  32. tap says:

    btw here is the link to the whole letter:

    hhttp://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf05.iv.iv.lxii.html

    I think you might be very interested in Paragraph 11

  33. Carrie says:

    Hi Stacey,

    I only have the first of the HSGF series and haven’t read it completely, but I think you’ll do much better with the first book. It not only defines sola scriptura but also tackles RC Tradition, something Kepha I think is correct to point out as important (on BA).

    I’ve been thinking of you and praying for you. I still have that partim-partim post and the sola fide post to get up which I hope you will find informative, but life just nevers slows down.

    Glad your family is feeling better.

  34. tap says:

    lol, rhetorical question, not directed at anyone: If Part III of a volume is hacking various texts from One ECF to another, how well do you think Part I will do?

    For the record i just saw James Swan’s reply to You quoting St. Basil The Great. I’m sure you already know this, but, basil talk some about tradition as well.

    In the Chapter 10 of his De Spiritu Sacto he says (LINK Prgf 25):

    But the object of attack is faith. The one aim of the whole band of opponents and enemies of sound doctrine is to shake down the foundation of the faith of Christ by levelling apostolic tradition with the ground, and utterly destroying it.

    So you have to options, either St. Basil was schizophrenic, or he was just pointing out to the eunomians (since they also claimed tradition), from scripture, where they were making their error.

    Of course he is not making any arguments for Sola Scriptura, because Eunomious used scripture first, and subsequently his claim of interpretation by his own false tradition.

  35. tap says:

    Stacey,
    Here i missed an even more damning part of the quote:
    “But the object of attack is faith. The one aim of the whole band of opponents and enemies of sound doctrine is to shake down the foundation of the faith of Christ by levelling apostolic tradition with the ground, and utterly destroying it. So like the debtors,—of course bona fide debtors—they clamour for written proof, and reject as worthless the unwritten tradition of the Fathers.”

  36. Stacey says:

    Thanks, tap. Too late, though, I’ve already passed the quote along.

  37. Stacey says:

    Hi Carrie,

    I only have the first of the HSGF series and haven’t read it completely, but I think you’ll do much better with the first book. It not only defines sola scriptura but also tackles RC Tradition, something Kepha I think is correct to point out as important (on BA).

    Yeah, I plan on reading it. I’ll start with the bit on tradition in the second book that James recommended from Beggars All. As you know, though, sometimes all this reading is slow going! Although the last couple days, the kids have given me a lot of leaway.

    I’ve been thinking of you and praying for you. I still have that partim-partim post and the sola fide post to get up which I hope you will find informative, but life just nevers slows down.

    Thanks for your prayers, Carrie, I really appreciate that. I pray for all of you at Beggars All as well, that you will all grow in understanding and be closer to God than you already are. It’s wonderful to see so many people passionate about Christ.

  38. Stacey says:

    Hi Carrie,

    I only have the first of the HSGF series and haven’t read it completely, but I think you’ll do much better with the first book. It not only defines sola scriptura but also tackles RC Tradition, something Kepha I think is correct to point out as important (on BA).

    Yeah, I plan on reading it. I’ll start with the bit on tradition in the second book that James recommended from Beggars All. As you know, though, sometimes all this reading is slow going! Although the last couple days, the kids have given me a lot of leaway.

    I’ve been thinking of you and praying for you. I still have that partim-partim post and the sola fide post to get up which I hope you will find informative, but life just nevers slows down.

    Thanks for your prayers, Carrie, I really appreciate that. I pray for all of you at Beggars All as well, that you will all grow in understanding and be closer to God than you already are. It’s wonderful to see so many people passionate about Christ.

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