Still waiting for an answer

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Ps104_33, Aug 11, 2002.

  1. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    Considering all the rehashing thats being diccussed on "oral tradition" I thought I would ask a question that I asked before and never received an answer. Please spare me all of the copy and pasted 10,000 word dissertations from Thomas Aquinas and the like. Here goes:

    CAN YOU NAME ONE ORAL, EXTRABIBLICAL TRADITION, DEMONSTRABLY TRACED TO THE APOSTOLIC AGE, WHICH IS NECESSARY FOR THE FAITH AND PRACTICE OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST.

    I think the key phrase here is "necessary for the faith and practice of the Church....."

    You must also be able to historically prove which Apostle the tradition originated or it is resting on sinking sand.

    Now name one and we can talk.
     
  2. Abiyah

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    Sent you a private message under "'My Profle."
     
  3. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    Still waiting......
     
  4. Helen

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    Not only are there none, but the very practices adopted by 'tradition' in the Roman Catholic church and others actually stand between a person and salvation by Jesus Christ.
     
  5. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    still waiting.....
     
  6. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    is this a tough one?
     
  7. Astralis

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    Psi,

    You seem rather impatient. You just posted this today and it's Sunday - after all, most Catholics on this board are probably in Church. (I go in the evenings).

    Tough Questions about Scripture
    The questions below are impossible for a believer in sola scriptura to answer, since no verse or combination of verses in Scripture provides the required information. Though every sola scriptura Christian interprets Scripture in a slightly different way, nearly all Christians, Catholic, Protestant, fundamentalist, or evangelical, hold a common set of beliefs about the faith, beliefs which Catholics know to be true because of the testimony of living Sacred Tradition, but which other Christians simply accept on faith, sometimes with no real Scriptural support at all. The topics presented below are of this variety - they are held to be true by almost all sola scriptura Christians, yet no Christian can demonstrate from Scripture why it is that he or she believes such a thing, since no verse or combination of verses in Scripture teaches the belief.

    Ex nihilo Creation: All Christians know that God created the world out of nothing, but the Protestant Scriptures do not say this anywhere. Some of the Bible commentaries on Genesis 1:1-2 assert that the Hebrew phrase, "the earth was a formless waste and darkness was on the face of the deep," was a Hebrew metaphor for ex nihilo creation, but the evidence in support of this assertion is not particularly compelling. Indeed, before the canon of Scripture was established, the earliest fathers of the Church had to make this point through reason alone to their pagan opponents. Clement (ca. 150-215 A.D.) appears to have been the first person to state and give a proof from reason for ex nihilo creation, while Tertullian (ca. 160-225 A.D.) conceded that creation out of nothing was not explicitly stated anywhere in the Bible, but argued from the silence of Scripture to say this manner of creation had to be the case. Both Christian apologists realized that God and matter could not be co-eternal - God's existence had to precede the existence of matter or His omnipotence could be called into question. It was only with the definition of the canon of Scripture, established between 382 and 419 A.D., that any book of Scripture taught the doctrine explicitly: "I beseech you, my child, to look at the heaven and the earth and see everything that is in them, and recognize that God did not make them out of things that existed" 2 Maccabees 7:28.

    The revelation of Jesus Christ ended with the death of the last Apostle: The question is quite simple: is Scripture closed? For example, would God inspire the writing of any more sacred books today? While not all Christian denominations agree, most recognize that no inspiration coming to us after the death of the last apostle could qualify as Scripture. However, this idea of the closing of the canon of Scripture is not found anywhere within Scripture itself. It is an apostolic teaching borne down through the ages in the body of Sacred Tradition guarded by the teaching authority of the Catholic Church, the Magisterium.

    Provide the name of the "beloved disciple": Remarkable, but true. The only reason we know the beloved disciple was John, the author of the Gospel, is through Sacred Tradition and the Magisterium. It is to be found nowhere in Sacred Scripture.

    Provide the names of the authors of Matthew's Gospel, Mark's Gospel, Luke's Gospel, John's Gospel, or the Acts of the Apostles: Again, Scripture doesn't tell us that the Gospel of Matthew, for instance, was written by Matthew. The titles to the Gospels are known to us only through Sacred Tradition - Scripture doesn't say who wrote any of these listed works. Likewise, the chapter and verse divisions are traditions of men, chapter divisions being added in 1206 A.D. by Stephen Langton, a professor at the University of Paris and subsequently Archibshop of Canterbury and a cardinal, while the verse numbering was added in the sixteenth century in order to assist in mechanically printing the text. The final form of the verse numbering scheme was set by Robert Etienne, also called Stephenus, in 1551 A.D.

    Scripture is the sole authority: While numerous passages of Scripture state that Scripture is an authority, none state that it is the sole authority. The closest verse in support of the statement is 2 Tim 3:16: "Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, reproof, correction and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work." Supposedly, this implies Scripture must be sufficient in and of itself, or the man of God could not be made complete by using it. Unfortunately for the sola scriptura thesis, James 1:4 states that "steadfastness" makes a person "perfect and complete, lacking in nothing," while 2 Tim 2:21 asserts that anyone who "purifies himself from what is ignoble... will be a vessel for noble use, consecrated and useful to the master of the house, ready for any good work." So, which is it, Scripture, steadfastness, or self-purification, that completes? It would seem that all are necessary, but none are sufficient by themselves.

    We attain salvation through faith alone: While numerous passages of Scripture state that faith is necessary for salvation, none say that faith alone saves. In fact, Scripture specifically denies that faith alone saves in James 2:24, while simultaneously pointing out the necessity of good works for salvation in several other passages, e.g., Eph 2:8-10, Jn 14:15, 1 Jn 5:1-3, Mt 25:31-46, Gal 6:2, etc.

    List the Old Testament canonical books or lists the New Testament canonical books: While we know what books are in Scripture, it is not because Scripture tells us, but because the councils and popes of the Church told us. The first three centuries of the Church saw a wide-ranging dispute over the contents of both the Old and the New Testament, with books in both Testaments being contested as false. For the Old Testament, Tobias, Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, 1 and 2 Maccabees, parts of Esther (chapters 11-16, or A-F), and parts of Daniel (3:24-90 and 13, 14) were disputed, for the New Testament, Hebrews, James, Jude, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Revelation, parts of Mark (16:9-20), parts of Luke (22:43-44) and parts of John (5:4 and 8:1-11) were all called into question.

    The complete canon of Scripture was first recognized by the Roman Synod convoked by Pope Damasus in 382 A. D., which produced the Roman Code. The Code contained the list of Holy Scripture. Pope Damasus confirmed the Synod and Code. The Council of Hippo (393 A.D.) and the First Council of Carthage (397 A.D.) provided identical lists of Scripture. Pope Innocent I confirmed the list again in 405 A.D. when the Gallican bishop Exsuperius of Toulouse asked him what books should be considered Scripture, and the replied by Pope sending him a letter containing a list identical to every definition so far given. The Second Council of Carthage (419 A.D.) confirmed the list yet again. All five definitions were identical to the Council of Trent's. In fact, every council between 393 A.D. and 1965 A.D. (Vatican II) which pronounced on the matter gave an identical list.

    Explain the doctrine of the Trinity: Once a Christian has the doctrine of the Trinity, Scripture can be found to support it, but no verse or combination of verses in Scripture tells us that God is one in divine nature having two processions between three Persons in four relations, each Person wholly and entirely God, all co-equal, co-eternal, none sharing the divine nature, but each possessing it totally unto Himself, the Godhead having but one divine intellect and one divine will.

    Tells us the Holy Spirit is one of the three Persons of the Trinity: Certainly Scripture can be found which tells us the Holy Spirit is God, e.g., Acts 5:3-4, but nowhere does it say that God consists of more than one Person. Numerous early heresies concerning the Holy Spirit arose both because Scripture was not yet fully defined and because those elements of Scripture which were recognized were simply not all that clear on how the Holy Spirit fit into the Godhead.

    Tells us Jesus Christ was both fully God and fully man from the moment of conception (e.g. how do we know His Divinity wasn't infused later in His life?) and/or tells us Jesus Christ is One Person with two complete natures, human and Divine and not some other combination of the two natures (i.e., one or both being either absent or less than complete): Again, remarkably, Scripture is essentially silent on the true nature, or rather natures, of Christ. Scripture says Jesus Christ is God, Scripture says Jesus Christ is human, Scripture says Jesus Christ is like us in all things but sin, but nowhere does Scripture say how or when all of this fits together. Was He this way from the moment of conception, or did His divinity descend upon Him at the baptism by John? As the early years of Church readily indicate, agreement was not complete on this issue. The idea that Jesus Christ is both fully God and fully man, having the fullness of the divine nature and a complete human nature, including human body, human will, human intellect, and human soul was only finally settled by the Magisterium at the Councils of Ephesus and Chalcedon. He was known to be God from the moment of conception because Ephesus (431 A.D.) declared Mary to be Mother of God in order to clarify that very point. The doctrine of Jesus' dual nature was laid out at Chalcedon in 451 A.D.

    Tell(s) us Jesus Christ is of the same substance of Divinity as God the Father: The Arian heresy, one of the toughest heresies the Church has ever faced, was fought over precisely this point. Arius had many passages of Scripture to support his position that Christ was the highest of all created beings and the first-born of creation, but not God, while his opponent, Athanasius, had an equally compelling case from Scripture asserting that Jesus Christ is truly God. As the debate progressed, the majority of council fathers vacillated between the two sides, for each had a very strong case, and no clear decision could be reached. The declaration that Jesus was consubstantial with the Father, not just of nature "like unto" the Father (as Arius asserted), but actually of the same substance as the Father, was only won after Athanasius appealed to apostolic tradition, at which point most of the council fathers who had been vacillating agreed that the Athanasian formula expressed the true faith handed down to the bishops from the Apostles. As a result, the First Council of Nicea (325 A.D.) formulated what we now call the Nicene Creed, including in it the first unScriptural word ever used in a creed, "homoousious," which means "of the same substance as."
     
  8. Abiyah

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    Some of the things in the long post above really
    astound me, that such things are taught and
    believed. Because my computer system
    makes copying and deleting parts of a post so
    difficult, I will not even try to answer your
    charges.

    And believe me, I intend no discrepect to you!

    I was surprised and gratified to learn that the
    Baptist churches do not usuallly hold to the
    creeds! I had feared that my synagogue might
    be one of few places of worship which loved our
    Lord and rejected them!

    At my synagogue, our only creed is this:
    Shema Yisrael, Adonai Eloheinu,
    Adonai echad
    Baruk shem kevod
    malkuto leolam vaed.
    Hear, O Israel, the Lord is our God,
    the Lord is One
    Blessed be His Name
    Whose glorious kingdom is forever.

    If I were going to choose a creed other than that,
    I would chooose this simple song:
    My hope is built on nothing less
    Than Jesus' blood and righteousness;
    I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
    But wholly lean on Jesus' name.

    On Christ the solid Rock I stand;
    All other ground is sinking sand.

    While many would decry this as too simplistic,
    it says all that I need say, because what Scrip-
    ture does not tell me Is Irrelevant.

    [ August 11, 2002, 05:25 PM: Message edited by: Abiyah ]
     
  9. Astralis

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    The "sweet name of Jesus" doesn't give you automatic faith. I live in Texas and know many Jesus' and they don't inspire me to believe in them.

    No where in the Bible is Christianity boiled down to simple Chrisianity and thus no doctrine is above one another or Jesus' ministry would be null.

    Regardless if you believe it or not or believe it's irrelevant, you believe in certain doctrines not from Scripture alone but from Sacred Tradition and Magisterium. Could you have simple Christianity without these doctrines:

    Ex nihilo Creation

    The revelation of Jesus Christ ended with the death of the last Apostle. If you don't believe this then we can add to scripture!

    Provide the name of the "beloved disciple"

    Provide the names of the authors of Matthew's Gospel, Mark's Gospel, Luke's Gospel, John's Gospel, or the Acts of the Apostles.

    Scripture is the sole authority. Probably the most famous extra-biblical invention which along with:

    We attain salvation through faith alone. You believe in these don't you?

    List the Old Testament canonical books or lists the New Testament canonical books. All writings and doctrines are called into question if we can have more books added or taken away.

    Explain the doctrine of the Trinity. No verse or combination of verses in Scripture tells us that God is one in divine nature having two processions between three Persons in four relations, each Person wholly and entirely God, all co-equal, co-eternal, none sharing the divine nature, but each possessing it totally unto Himself, the Godhead having but one divine intellect and one divine will. Let someone who doesn't know Christianity pick up the Bible in the middle of the desert and quiz them on the Trinity and see what you get. Even today there are heretics who don't believe in the Trinity.

    Tells us the Holy Spirit is one of the three Persons of the Trinity: Certainly Scripture can be found which tells us the Holy Spirit is God, e.g., Acts 5:3-4, but nowhere does it say that God consists of more than one Person. Numerous early heresies concerning the Holy Spirit arose both because Scripture was not yet fully defined and because those elements of Scripture which were recognized were simply not all that clear on how the Holy Spirit fit into the Godhead.

    Tells us Jesus Christ was both fully God and fully man from the moment of conception (e.g. how do we know His Divinity wasn't infused later in His life?) and/or tells us Jesus Christ is One Person with two complete natures, human and Divine and not some other combination of the two natures (i.e., one or both being either absent or less than complete): Again, remarkably, Scripture is essentially silent on the true nature, or rather natures, of Christ. Scripture says Jesus Christ is God, Scripture says Jesus Christ is human, Scripture says Jesus Christ is like us in all things but sin, but nowhere does Scripture say how or when all of this fits together. Was He this way from the moment of conception, or did His divinity descend upon Him at the baptism by John? As the early years of Church readily indicate, agreement was not complete on this issue. The idea that Jesus Christ is both fully God and fully man, having the fullness of the divine nature and a complete human nature, including human body, human will, human intellect, and human soul was only finally settled by the Magisterium at the Councils of Ephesus and Chalcedon. He was known to be God from the moment of conception because Ephesus (431 A.D.) declared Mary to be Mother of God in order to clarify that very point. The doctrine of Jesus' dual nature was laid out at Chalcedon in 451 A.D.

    Tell(s) us Jesus Christ is of the same substance of Divinity as God the Father: The Arian heresy, one of the toughest heresies the Church has ever faced, was fought over precisely this point. Arius had many passages of Scripture to support his position that Christ was the highest of all created beings and the first-born of creation, but not God, while his opponent, Athanasius, had an equally compelling case from Scripture asserting that Jesus Christ is truly God. As the debate progressed, the majority of council fathers vacillated between the two sides, for each had a very strong case, and no clear decision could be reached. The declaration that Jesus was consubstantial with the Father, not just of nature "like unto" the Father (as Arius asserted), but actually of the same substance as the Father, was only won after Athanasius appealed to apostolic tradition, at which point most of the council fathers who had been vacillating agreed that the Athanasian formula expressed the true faith handed down to the bishops from the Apostles. As a result, the First Council of Nicea (325 A.D.) formulated what we now call the Nicene Creed, including in it the first unScriptural word ever used in a creed, "homoousious," which means "of the same substance as."

    You think these are irrelevant to Christianity??
     
  10. HankD

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    Like I keep saying, Scripture is the Final authority. Tradition such as those dealing with the Proper names of Books of the Bible and canonical lists of these Books are indeed part of the antiquity of the Church. Which includes more than just the Latin Church.

    Traditions/teachings which clearly violate Scripture are rejected whether from the Greek, Latin, Coptic, Schismatic, Orthodox, Charismatic Church or whatever other flavor there is or ever will be.

    But a greater issue...
    The Church of Rome of the first two centuries
    was a martyred Church.
    The Church of Rome after the 8th century did the martyring.

    HankD

    [ August 11, 2002, 05:55 PM: Message edited by: HankD ]
     
  11. Astralis

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    Yeah, yeah, you can keep saying it and ignore history.
     
  12. Don

    Don
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    Or, alternatively, you can hold to history and ignore scripture....
     
  13. Baptist Believer

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    Actually, the letter to the Galatians makes it pretty clear that faith alone is what saves. (Works are evidence of true faith, but they are not what saves.)

    Paul points the readers to the faith of Abraham as our example and heritage. When Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness, there was no Bible, no church, no temple, no Old Testament Law, no circumcision or any other religious institution or revelation than that of Abraham personally coming to know God.

    For the most part, except for a mysterious interchange with Melchizedek king of Salem (Genesis 14), Abraham acted as his own priest offering sacrifices to God on his own behalf.

    Abraham's faith was not mediated through anyone and no works were involved in attaining salvation -- merely "believing God". The good works (sacrifices and obedience) that Abraham did were in response to the call of God and the faith that Abraham placed in God.
     
  14. Astralis

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    Indeed, if we can all hold to history and scripture like the Catholic Church does then it will be good.
     
  15. HankD

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    Dear Astralis,

    You posted...

    Good?
    History records a Roman Catholic blood bath from 800AD to 1800AD.
    Where in Scripture does Christ tell the Apostles it is good to garrote or disembowel someone or burn them at the stake for refusing to bow the knee to the Pope?

    Your Church is far from infallible and history has shown she has disobeyed Him grossly.

    HankD
     
  16. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    I thought I asked all of you to refrain from all the copy and pasted plagiarised 10,000 word tomes.

    You ought to know enough about what you believe without resorting to something that most of us have little time or desire to read.
     
  17. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    youre still avoiding the question. Here it is"

    CAN YOU NAME ONE ORAL, EXTRABIBLICAL TRADITION, DEMONSTRABLY TRACED TO THE APOSTOLIC AGE, WHICH IS NECESSARY FOR THE FAITH AND PRACTICE OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST.
     
  18. GH

    GH
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    CAN YOU NAME ONE ORAL, EXTRABIBLICAL TRADITION, DEMONSTRABLY TRACED TO THE APOSTOLIC AGE, WHICH IS NECESSARY FOR THE FAITH AND PRACTICE OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST.

    Hi Psalm,

    Interesting question. No, I don't think such a tradition exists. But since I have no need for one, I haven't looked very hard for it. I have studied the first 500 of the "faith" and found that believers had a simple faith and trusted in the finished work of Jesus Christ - death, burial and resurrection.

    To be even more radical than a simple faith in Jesus I've found - for myself that is - that it is HIS faith that matters. It has nothing to do with "our" faith at all, but rather is the Faith of the Son of God. You will notice that the continuation of Hebrews chapter 11 is followed by this..... "

    ....looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of faith"

    Your eyes are not deceiving you, I have not missed the word "our", for it is not in the original text. Jesus Christ, the Princely-Leader and perfecter of faith brings to the equation a new Life, His own Life, His Faith upon "whom faith depends from start to finish." And so like those early believers let us again declare....

    "We live by the FAITH OF the Son of God."

    Many have left the simplicity of the good news of Jesus Christ.

    Peace and blessings to you in Jesus,

    Diane

    [ August 11, 2002, 07:37 PM: Message edited by: GH ]
     
  19. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    Diane,
    Thank-you for your answer. I am assuming that you are Roman Catholic. Most other RC wont agree with what you just wrote. I have one other question for you.

    Is there anything Roman Catholics must believe in order to obtain salvation that is not found in the Scriptures.
     
  20. Helen

    Helen
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    Hi Psalm -- gotta post a tome in return, but none of it is plagiarized, OK? [​IMG]

    Here is the original question/challenge:

    CAN YOU NAME ONE ORAL, EXTRABIBLICAL TRADITION, DEMONSTRABLY TRACED TO THE APOSTOLIC AGE, WHICH IS NECESSARY FOR THE FAITH AND PRACTICE OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST.

    I would like to deal with the following responses:

    Perhaps the writer misunderstands what ‘sola scriptura’ means. It does not mean the Bible is a text providing every answer to every question. It means that when the Bible does speak on something it is the last and final authority. It means that the Bible is appealed to above all other authority for support or denial of various doctrines. With that on the board, let’s look at the rest, most of which, by the way, are NOT necessary for the faith and practice of the born again believer.

    The writer is appealing to what does not need to be appealed to. The clear teaching of ex nihilo creation is in the use of the verb bara in juxtaposition to the verb asah. Bara is a verb meaning to create from nothing or to make. It can go either way. Asah is an extremely ‘generic’ verb indicating something done or made or worked or produced, or shown, or brought, or…. It is used over 2500 times in the Old Testament. It is used with either men or God as the subject, or even an animal as the subject. It is simply a kind of form of “to do.”
    Bara is quite different. The subject is ALWAYS God and never man or beast. And when used in comparison or juxtaposition to asah it means to create from nothing. It is used only three times in Genesis 1: for the creation of the time/space/matter-energy continuum in verse 1; for the creation of mentality (nephesh, soul, or ‘breath of life’) in verse 21; and the creation of spirit for man and man alone in verse 27. Everything else in Genesis 1 is asah – formed or made out of existing materials. Thus an understanding of what is being indicated by the verbs used in Genesis 1 could not be clearer in its indication of creation ex nihilo, out of nothing.

    And yes, this one is necessary to faith, for either God is eternal and created matter, or matter is eternal and ended up making up a god.

    You are missing what IS found in Scripture:
    1. Creation is finished: Genesis 2:4
    2. The Law is finished: Matthew 5:18
    3. Atonement is finished: John 19:30
    4. Prophecy/revelation are finished: Revelation 22:19

    Now, what would you like to add? The Catholic church has admitted to a possibility of evolution being true. That is denied by #1
    The Catholic church has added all kinds of laws and rites ‘required’ for redemption. That is denied by #2
    The Catholic church insists that it is necessary for atonement today via intercession etc. That is denied by #3
    The Catholic church has collected through the millennia scores of false prophecies from demonic apparitions claiming to be Mary or some other ‘saint’ by means of special revelations. This is denied by #4.

    The Catholic church, in other words, is propagating non-biblical doctrine and, in many cases, anti-biblical doctrines. The only teaching authority it has is what it claims for itself. The teacher from God for the Christian is the Holy Spirit.

    Internal text structure gives pretty good indication this was John, but whether or not it was does not make any difference in the life of a believer and his or her relationship with God.


    First of all, the authors were accepted as given before the close of the first century. They were verified in the middle of the second century. Secondly, the names of the authors are not necessary for faith. This is again a red herring answer which has nothing to do with the question asked.

    I would cite Acts 17:11, where the Bereans are commended for SEARCHING SCRIPTURE EVERYDAY to see if what even Paul said was true. I have a question for any Catholic here: do you do that with the teachings of your leaders?

    Meanwhile, James 1:4 is referring to the maturity of a believer, not to salvation. And why are you appealing to Scripture to back up your point? If you are, however, please do NOT take it out of context. There is a dictum which is told to every Bible study student in every course I know of: Text without context is pretext. Both of the passages you referred to are talking to those who are already saved and encouraging them to keep going. We cannot lose our salvation, but we can lose rewards, or ‘crowns.’

    You have misstated us. Look at Ephesians 2:1-10 (keeping it well in context) and you will find we are not saved BY faith, but by GRACE, and THROUGH faith. There is a giant difference! Christ does the saving, start to finish and there is NOTHING we can do to deserve it, help with it, add to it, maintain it, or keep ourselves in any way. What we can do is trust and obey. And that is all He has asked us to do. HE does our good works through us when we are saved as, then, we are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, who directs our lives and takes the responsibility of maturing us (Philippians 1:6; Romans 8:28-30). Here is the Ephesians passage:

    As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, and the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us n Christ Jesus. FOR IT IS BY GRACE YOU HAVE BEEN SAVED, THROUGH FAITH – AND THIS IS NOT FROM YOURSELVES, IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD – NOT BY WORKS, SO THAT N ONE CAN BOAST. FOR WE ARE GOD’S WORKMANSHIP, CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS TO DO GOOD WORKS, WHICH GOD PREPARED IN ADVANCE FOR US TO DO.

    As Paul also says, “I am not my own. My life is hid with Christ in God.” That also says it all.

    Sorry, the councils only ratified what was already known. The nearly complete list was ratified by 150 A.D., long before the Catholic church came into being.

    A number of us have already written on this. I contributed to this page:
    http://www.ldolphin.org/Names.html


    see the above. Here, also, is a letter I wrote some time ago to a young lady who was starting to study with the Jehovah’s Witnesses and was questioning about the Trinity. You will find some overlap with the URL cited above:

    The concept of the Trinity is present from the opening verse of the Bible, actually. The word "God" in Genesis 1:1 is "elohim." This is not a simple plural of the word 'god.' The plural of that word, which means 'two,' is "eloh." "Elohim" means "three or more."

    In Deuteronomy 6:4, we have the resounding, "Hear O Israel, the LORD our God, the LORD is one!"

    "God" is, there again, "Elohim." What is also interesting is that the last word of that, the word "one" is the word "echad." "Echad" means unity in plurality. It is the same word used regarding marriage in Genesis 2:24, when a man is to leave his mother and father and become one with his wife. The word which is NOT used there to mean "one" is "yachid." "Yachid" means a unique singularity.

    Now go to Isaiah 9 -- the famous Christmas verse:

    "For unto us a child is born
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
    And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor,
    Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father,
    Prince of Peace."


    Now go to Isaiah 44:6 --

    "This is what the LORD says -- Israel's King and Redeemer, the LORD Almighty:
    I am the first and I am the last;
    Apart from me there is no God."


    Please cross reference this with Jesus' words to John in Revelation
    1:17-18 – "Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One. I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever."

    Check the Gospel of John, opening sentences, opening chapter:

    "In the beginning was the Word. And the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. [Remember Genesis 1:1 -- "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.:] .... The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

    Please note also that the absolutely correct translation of the Hebrew is "...and God was the Word," - I urge you to look it up.

    And remember Jesus words' at the end of Matthew: "...baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit...." and, again, Jesus' words defining eternal life in John 17:3 clearly equate Him with the Father.

    And so, although we may not understand the Trinity with our human minds very well, the doctrine of the Trinity is present in the Bible from the first.

    Jesus is God Himself in the flesh, and it was because this was His very claim that the Pharisees were so outraged and attempted several times to stone Him. There are two Greek words which mean "I am." The first is "ego" which means "I am " with the emphasis on the "I". The second is "eimi", which also means "I am" with the emphasis on the "am." John records three times when Jesus used the double phrase (which is very poor Greek grammar, as the two words are never used together!) "Ego eimi", meaning "I am I AM" or "I am [the] I AM:" when He identified Himself to the woman at the well in John 4:26, in John 8:24, when responding to the Pharisaical challenge, and when He identified Himself to the Pharisees in John 8:58 (at which time the Pharisees picked up rocks to stone Him for the blasphemy of using God's name -- they thought in vain). In John 10:31-33, we see the incident where the Pharisees again want to stone him and Jesus asks them why:

    "I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?"
    "We are not stoning you for any of these," replied the Jews, "but for
    blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God."


    So what the Jehovah's Witnesses and the encyclopedias do not understand today, the Pharisees understood quite clearly: Jesus claimed to be God.

    In John 14-17 we have the famous last discourse of our Lord. In John 14:16, Jesus promises "another" counselor to be with the disciples forever. He identifies this Counselor as the Holy Spirit. The interesting thing here is the word He chose for "another." Again, there are two Greek words for Him to choose from. One is "allos", meaning "exactly alike in every detail." The other is "heteros" meaning "a different other". The first -- allos -- would be used if you broke a vase at someone's house and you promised to buy the owner another vase exactly like the first as a replacement. The second -- heteros -- would be used if you had a wonderful vacation with your family and you promised yourselves another vacation together next year.
    When Jesus referred to "another" Counselor, the word He used was “allos."

    He was one Counselor, but He would send "another" -- allos -- one just like Him, for the disciples. This is re-affirmed when Jesus refers to the Holy Spirit as "the Spirit of Truth" in John 16:13. Jesus had identified Himself as "the truth" in John 14:6. The Spirit is also identified as being present in Genesis 1:2 -- right there in the beginning.

    We may have invented the word "Trinity" somewhere along the line to try to put a name to this concept, but the reality of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit all being the One God (which is exactly what the Shema says), is present from the beginning to the end of the Bible. One way in which you can check this for yourself is by using a good Concordance.


    I would suggest that the Scriptures are not at all silent about this, but that they simply do not tell you in first grade reader words. What are you expecting?

    “See Jesus.
    Jesus is God.
    Jesus is man, too.
    Jesus is 100% God
    Jesus is 100% man.
    See Jesus do miracles!”

    Quit believing the nonsense the Catholic church is teaching you, in other words, and read Scripture for yourself.

    Jesus claimed to be the First and the Last, the I AM of Moses time, whose day Abraham saw. He is listed as the Creator of all there is and says He will come again as Judge. He forgave sins, performed miracles of healing and life, had the power to lay down His life and take it up again. He was/is God.

    Jesus was physically born, physically died, ate, drank, slept, got tired and hungry, was tempted, and was a physical being. Jesus was human.

    If either of those qualifies as only “part” of one, let me know. Just because the Catholic church figured they had to make up their ecclesiastical minds about this says nothing about what Scripture says.

    The Pharisees got the message long before the Council of Nicea. That is why they tried to stone Him, as referenced above. Again, men’s arguments one way or the other do not indicate what Scripture is plainly saying – however it is interesting that Scripture was exactly what was appealed to at ALL these councils in order to settle the argument…

    Sounds a lot like sola scriptura to me!
     

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