Historical Objectivity of Rome

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Dr. Walter, Jun 18, 2010.

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  1. Dr. Walter

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    It seems that Rome practiced the scorched earth policy when it came to those they opposed in history. They obliterated any written records of those they judged to be "heretics." Are there credible historians and scholars who question the objectivity of Roman historians?



    What about the comment by the infidel historian William E.H. Lecky who said in his History of Morals:

    "...no impartial reader can, I think, investigate the innumerable grotesqe and lying legends that, during the whole course of the Middle Ages, were deliberately palmed upon mankind as undoubted facts, can follow the histories of the false decretals, and the discussions that were connected with them, or can observe the complete and absolute incapacity most Catholic historians have displayed, of conceiving any good thing in the ranks of their opponents, or stating with common fairness any consideration that can tell against their cause, without acknowledging how serious and how inveterate has been the evil. There have been, no doubt many nobel exceptions. Yet, it is, I believe difficult to exaggerate the extent to which this moral defect exist in most of the ancient and very much of the modern literature of Catholocism" William E. H. Lecky, History of European Morals, (New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1887) Vol. 2, p. 212

    How about the great historian of the Roman Empire,

    "The Catholics....instead of assuming such honorable pride, the orthodox theologions were tempted, by the assurance of impunity to compose fictions, which must be stigmatized with epithets of fraud and forgery. They ascribe their own polemical works to the most venerable names of Christian antiquity; the characters of Athanasius and Augustin were awkwardly personated by Vigilius and his disciples.....Even the Scriptures themselves wer profaned by their rash hands....the example of fraud must cite suspicion." - Edward Gibbons, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (New York: Peter Fenelon Collier) Vol. 3, pp. 555,556.557

    Even though there is records that the Paulicians themselves deniend they were no Manicheans, nearly all history books today present them as such based upon Roman Catholic historians who base this charge by the accusation of one Catholic who was later excommunicated from the church.

    "The Paulicians sincerely condemned the memory and opinions of the Manichean sect, and complained of the injustice which impressed that invidious name on the simple votaries of St. Paul and of Christ" - Gibbons, Ibid. Vol. 5, p. 387

    What about Sir William Jones and his comprehensive investigations into the charges brought against the Waldenses by Rome:

    "the names imposed upon them in France by their adversaries, they say, have been intended to vilify and ridicule them, or to represent them as new and different sects. Being stripped of all their property and reduced by persecution to extreme poverty, they have been called 'poor of Lynons.' From their mean and famished appearance in their exalted and destitute state, they have been called, in provincial jargon, "Siccan,' or pickpockets. Because they would not observe Saints days, they were falsely supposed to neglect the Sabbath also, and callled 'Inzabbatati' or 'In Sabbathists.' As they denied transubstantiation or the personal and divine presence of Jesus Christ in the host or wafer exhibited in the mass, they were called 'Arians.'

    Their adversaries, premising that all power must be derived from God through his viceergent, the Pope, or from an opposite and evil principle, inferred that the Waldenses were 'Manicheans' because they denied the Popes supremacy over the empeors and kings of the earth
    ." - William Jones, The History of the Christian Church. (Lousiville: Norwood & Palmer, 1831) vol. 1, p. 300.
     
    #1 Dr. Walter, Jun 18, 2010
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  2. Thinkingstuff

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    I'm not certain about your other quotes but the quote from the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire has been noted by an anti-Catholic / Anti-Christian author who likes to put Christianity in a bad light. I don't disagree Rome may be biased but so is that author.

    How do you view JND Kelly? or even Christianity Today? They publish a magazine called Christian History. How about Zondervan's review of Christian History? How about a real simple resource from Rose Publishing?
     
  3. Dr. Walter

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    Edward Gibbons received the common criticism that Rome showed to all those who opposed her. He got blackballed because he dared to expose her hypocrisy.

    Here is what one commentator says about these charges against Gibbons:

    Gibbon's work has been criticized for its aggressively scathing view of Christianity as laid down in chapters XV and XVI. Those chapters were strongly criticised and resulted in the banning of the book in several countries. Gibbon's alleged crime was disrespecting, and none too lightly, the character of sacred Christian doctrine in "treat[ing] the Christian church as a phenomenon of general history, not a special case admitting supernatural explanations and disallowing criticism of its adherents". More specifically, Gibbon's blasphemous chapters excoriated the church for "supplanting in an unnecessarily destructive way the great culture that preceded it" and for "the outrage of [practicing] religious intolerance and warfare".[23] Gibbon, though assumed to be entirely anti-religion, was actually supportive to some extent, insofar as it did not obscure his true endeavour – a history that was not influenced and swayed by official church doctrine. Some argue that though it is true that the most famous two chapters are heavily ironical and cutting about religion, that it is interesting that it is in no way utterly condemned, and that the apparent truth and rightness is upheld however thinly.


    I have studied this issue sufficient to know there are two types of historians existing. Those who accept Rome as "the Church" and swallow hook line and sinker and uncritically accept what she says as their source materials and those who studied her writings more critically.


     
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  4. Thinkingstuff

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    That's a nice review from one commentator but I'm sure I can find favorable reviews for Hitler too. Not that Gibbons is a Hitler but it doesn't mean what was said of him is not true. You have to imagine several Countries banned him. Imagine that. There is a bias by him regarding Christianity in General. Note in his works he doesn't mention Landmark Baptist or Primative Baptist either.

    And as much as I respect you Dr. Walter your last seems a bit on the conspiracy theory side of things. You would have us imagine that historians are equally split down the middle with regard to this but the fact is its more like 80/20. And again I only mention evangelical sources I've used secular historians have no obligation to Rome and I'm certain would much rather paint them in the light of Dan Brown or Landmarkism than is true.
     
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  5. Dr. Walter

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    Donation of Constantine. One of the most famous forgeries in history, the Donatio was purportedly a document from the 4th century emperor Constantine granting Pope Sylvester I and his successors imperial authority over the western empire in exchange for baptizing and instructing him in the Christian faith and curing him of leprosy. Many popes used this spurious document to buttress their prodigious claims to temporal supremacy. In this case, papal power was the agenda. However, the Renaissance humanist Lorenzo Valla (c. 1407–1457) proved it to be a forgery by using textual criticism; he showed that the Latin employed was clearly from the 8th not the 4th century. - Gerald Priest, Ph.D.
    When Church Historians Distort the Truth: The Problem of Cultural Agenda Dictating Interpretation
     
  6. Thinkingstuff

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    This is a well documented fabrication its still doesn't prove that everything has been fabricated. There was a specific occasion for this. Which several anomynous persons deceived many to substantiate papal claims over certain lands and authority. It did take a while for the forgery to be discovered. However, these things always reveal themselves.
     
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  7. Dr. Walter

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    Here is the problem. You are a product of Roman thinking. I can provide massive quotations from historians and the Roman response will always be the same - they are not credible sources because no source is credible that the church condemns.

    Gibbons wrote when many countries in Europe were CATHOLIC DOMINATED and no wonder his work was banned.

    Here is the problem I have with your responses. You are not responding in behalf of your family. You are responding in behalf of yourself. Rome has prostituted the gospel of Jesus Christ and if anyone should be able to see this clearly it should be a person like you who has been professedly saved. If Rome cannot be trusted with the gospel of Jesus Christ, then why should you trust her witness against those who do preach the gospel of Christ?? Look at her testimony against the evangelical Anabaptists in the 16th century and against the evangelical Waldenses for which we do have their gospel views. Why should you trust the unregenerated religious institution against those who proclaim the true gospel of Jesus Christ??????????

    I am through playing this game that you are not presenting your OWN views but simply desiring to make sure the views of Rome are presented correctly. Even the tone of your words demonstrate these are YOUR views.

     
    #7 Dr. Walter, Jun 18, 2010
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  8. Dr. Walter

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    So, you love Rome and will defend her no matter what. You presume Rome is not biased to any great degree and assume those who expose her are biased to a greater degree. This has been very clear in your responses. Especially in your response to Gibbons where the very nature of the criticisms against him demonstrate exactly what I said is the practice of Rome from the fourth century in regard to those it views as heretics.

    It will not matter what evidence I bring as you will always seek those who accept the historical basis presented by Rome.

    Bottom line, you are very clear where you stand and you stand as a defender of Rome and to say that you are merely wanting to make sure she is fairly represented is pure sham as these are YOUR views and it is quite apparent from the very way you respond when there is NO REASON but bias to respond the way you are.

     
  9. Thinkingstuff

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    If historians were evenly split down the middle I may give you some hearing. But they are not. Now even in the evangelical world historians have sided with history as it is. I cited sources such as Zondervan (christian publishing house) also Rose (another christian publishing house) Even reading Metzger and others on Christian history they seem to side with my view or should I say I obtained my view from studying them. Even when I took western civ in a Pentecostal university they sided with the perspective I hold. Only a few Christian historian or a minority of them go with Carrol.

    I've explained my view. The Christian church has evolved. Jesus taught the apostles. The apostles founded churches. The churches struggled with new consepts not considered by the apostles or their teachings in scripture so they had to come up with what I call theoretical theology. Attempting to get at consepts the Apostles hadn't clearly defined or progressed further than their writings. This attempt at dealing with issues consistently with scripture based on the scrutiny of their time lead to all sorts of ideas and misapplications. I believe Origin to be the master piece of theoretical theology trying to understand the deeper consepts of what was written in scripture. But note the church in Origins time was entirely different than that at the apostles'. However as the Church grew and discussed issues it also grew and developed changing again and again. The churches of the middle ages were nothing like in the 6th Century. If you read the ECF you see their attempt at getting right doctrine etc... However, in the Middle ages Europe was ripe for church Control which I believe got out of hand and things changed again. The Reformation was needed to get Christians back on tract of the important things in the gospel. However, they like the early church stuggled to get things right and thus many denominations were formed. Finally we get down to the churches of today which are undergoing further changes for the future. However, the scriptures are the same so the teachings are the same. Its the stuff beyond the simple language of Scripture that have always been at issue.
     
  10. Dr. Walter

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    There are several well documented articles on the internet concerning the historical treatment of Martin Luther by Rome. The first five hundred years Rome villified the personal character of Luther claiming he was mentally unstable and insane and given over to terrible sins in order discredit his theology. Since the 19th century the Roman Catholic writers did a complete 180 degree turn about and started to honor his virtues and character.

    honesty.http://tquid.sharpens.org/catlut2.htm

    Rome vehemently denied the inquisitions were performed by the Catholic church but rather blamed the secular state until the recent Pope apologized for the inqisitions and persecution of "heretics."

    http://www.druidry.org/obod/news/pope.html
     
  11. Dr. Walter

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    And I have asked you if you have critically examined your sources to see if they uncritically accept the Roman source materials or just assume Roman sources present "history as it is"? No historians are going to discredit Rome IF they believe they originate with her!!!


     
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  12. Dr. Walter

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    Hence, your church is not the "pillar and ground of the truth" but the pillar and ground of constant transition from truth to error and division and confusion.

    Hence, your church is Rome for the most part of history as your developing church is essentially the position of the Roman Catholic Church itself. This is their very own model of constant transition and development.

    Do you accept Rome TODAY as a "true" church with "error."

     
  13. Thinkingstuff

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    You make me laugh Dr. Walter. Read my above post you'll get the general Ideal of what I believe. And you make several false assertions. Did I not say in my second post
    . So, your claim that
    is totally inaccurate. Your assertion here
    is also false. I am a staunch observer of the objective truth rather than subjective truth based on perseption of a belief system. The fact that the unquestionable majority of historical Scholars side with me doesn't seem to phase you and your minority view. You are basing what you know of history colored with the bias of subjective view from your landmarkist beliefs. Rather than be objective.
    My objectivity gets me into trouble here not just with history but with science as well since observable data does not coincide with a 6,000 year world view for creation. I am very consistent with regard to objective observable data. I believe its the people here that hold onto their bias belief system of subjectivity that are disingenuous. And I find it dangerous. Have you seen the documentary Waiting for Armeggeddon? Very revealing and scary to.
    Do I love Rome. No its a smelly city that has too many beggars on the streets not enough traffic controls etc. Do I love the Catholic Church. I do in the same manner I Love Judaism and the Jews. Both have contributed to our faith and for those contributions I am obliged and greateful for. I would see all of them saved and come to a saving relationship with our Lord. But then again you may misinterpret that.
     
  14. Thinkingstuff

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    No the same consistant gospel has been preached. The faithful are saved the same way no matter what age of the church they find themselves in. So you are in error with your assumption.

    Hence, my church is Country and Town Baptist Church. Has been for some years now. Jesus never said we wouldn't go through transistions and development. He said the truth would always be true. that hasn't changed.

    I believe some Roman Catholics will be saved the same way I am saved. But essentially I can agree with that statment. Like I believe Landmarkism are part of the true church but with Error. Or Methodist are part of the true church but with error. However, I don't believe oneness pentecostals are any part of the true church :tongue3:
     
  15. Dr. Walter

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    Here is what I said,

    "You presume Rome is not biased to any great degree and assume those who expose her are biased to a greater degree."

    Why is it that you think that my position is due to blindly following some system ("landmarkism") and not due to my own personal research????? Do you have any evidence for that assertion?

    I have asked you on more than one occassion, have you personally examined your historical sources to see if they uncritically accept Roman history as fact? Historians who embrace Rome as "the church" will have little or no interest in critically examining the evidence that would undermine their own basic premise.

    I have also asked you, "Do YOU believe that the Roman Catholic Church is "a" "true" church with only error?

     
  16. BobRyan

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    I would suggest a third category.

    Thomas Bokenkotter is a Catholic and a historian of the Catholic church. His book "A Concise History of the Catholic Church" reveals some non-flattering details of history for which many Catholics choose to attack their own historian for daring to admit to certain details of history.

    In his own preface he says that if he is guilty of anything - it is in not admitting to enough non-flattering details to fit the actual history of the church.

    "In spite of all my efforts I realize the book has its share of shortcomings and omissions which are perhaps inevitable in a book of this scope. Some critics, for instance, have noted, with a certain amount of justice perhaps, a tendency to glide over the negative and dark aspects of the Church's history... I can only say that after writing this book I am more aware than ever of how difficult it is to produce a balanced account of the complex concatenation of events, ideas, and personalities that constitute historical reality" ibid. p.IX


    ==================

    In Bokenkotter's book "A Concise History of the Catholic Church" we find this candid remark concerning the inquisition in the "Historical Catholic Church" - p117

    How popular did this free-handed style of torture become among the spiritually elite?


     
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  17. Thinkingstuff

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    I answered your last question in my prevous post you may not have read it. And I also suggested to you the answer to your first question. IF historians were more equal in their historical assesment in favor of your position I may give it more consideration. However, its a landslide they do not. If evidence were to support the suppossition that baptist like todays' baptist were from the very begining you would have more historians on your band wagon which indicates to me there is an issue here. Archeoligal finds like the one at Miggido or at Dura Europis disagree with your assesment.

    also note through out history there has always been an attempt to wipe out traces of enemies. Let me give you a for instance. The Egyptian Empire was biased against women leaders yet they could not (as much as they attempted) to get rid of all traces of Hatshepsut the first female Pharoah. Yet as thorough as they were we have evidence of her existance during 1473-1458 BCE. Christianity more than any other group of people have the majority of historical documents of anyone world wide yet insist that every document for the baptist has been burned that is unlikely. For instance the gnostic writers were actively sought and their works burned by rome but look at the historical find in Egypt at Nag Hammurabi! You have no such thing for the baptist. Why is that? Because their existance did not coincide with the ECF or any other group before the Reformation period except maybe in Wales. This is actual history the Greeks attempted to wipe out any memory of Troy yet we have Homer and we have the city itself actually dug out of the ground in Turkey. You have no such thing for the baptist.
     
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  18. BobRyan

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    The document is recorded in many court cases and also in Canon Law - the decision was made to leave it - since the arguments for the right of the Catholic church to hold lands and be in essence a government are based on that document.

    It was "designed" in the 8th century to be fully accepted by the Catholic leadership of the day - promoting only those ideas that Catholic doctrine, tradition and practice would approve of - while claiming to have been written by the Emperor.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  19. BobRyan

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    how about these sources?

    http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=45674
    Posted: August 9, 2005
    1:00 a.m. Eastern
    © 2005 WorldNetDaily.com
    I'm also encouraged by Benedict XVI, who seems to have inherited John Paul II's humility as well as his loyalty to foundational doctrines.

    On Jan. 22, 1998, when he was still a cardinal and the grand Inquisitor (yes!) of the Roman Catholic Church, he declared that their archives (4,500 large volumes) indicate a death toll of 25 million killed by the Catholic Church for being "heretics." And likely two-thirds of the original volumes are lost.

    That kind of honesty will help relations (though there is no basis for uniting the RCC with Bible-believing Protestant churches).

    ===========================================

     
  20. BobRyan

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    The Catholic church on anti-Semitism,
    Will Durant writes in The Story of Civilization:

    The Council of Vienna (1311) forbade all association between Christians and Jews. The Council of Zamora (1313) ruled that they must be kept in strict subjection and servitude. The Council of Basel (1431-33) renewed canonical decrees forbidding Christians to associate with Jews...and instructed secular authorities to confine the Jews in separate quarters, compel them to wear a distinguishing badge, and ensure their attendance at sermons aimed to convert them.

    In 1243 the entire Jewish population of Belitz, near Berlin, was burned alive on the charge that some of them had defiled a consecrated Host. [...] In 1298 every Jew in Rottingen was burned to death on the charge of desecrating a sacramental wafer. Rindfleisch, a pious baron, organized and armed a band of Christians sworn to kill all Jews; they completely exterminated the Jewish community at Wurtzburg, and slew 698 Jews in Nuremberg.


    "the ecclesiastical Council of Zamora (1313) decreed the imposition of the badge, the segregation of the Jewish from the Christian population, and a ban against the employment of Jewish physicians by Christians, or of Chrsitian servants by Jews
    The Story of Civilization: Part IV "The Age of Faith" by Will Durant. Simon and Schuster, New York, 1950.


    Pope Eugenius IV (1431-47)...added that Jews should be ineligible for any public office, could not inherit property from Christians, must build no more synagogues, and must stay in their homes, behind closed doors and windows, in Passion Week (a wise provision against Catholic violence)....

    In a later bull Eugenius ordered that any Italian Jew found reading Talmudic literature should suffer confiscation of his property. Pope Nicholas V commissioned St. John of Capistrano (1447) to see to it that every clause of this repressive legislation should be enforced, and authorized him to seize the property of any Jewish physician who treated a Christian.

    As one of many examples of the decrees issued by Popes in support of persecuting and murdering non-Catholics, a 1487 bull of Pope Innocent VIII commanded that people "rise up in arms against" the Waldensians and "tread them under foot".

    Catholic historian Peter de Rosa writes in Vicars of Christ (Crown Publishers, 1988), "Of eighty popes in a line from the thirteenth century on not one of them disapproved of the theology and apparatus of the Inquisition. On the contrary, one after another added his own cruel touches to the workings of this deadly machine."
     
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