What are your thoughts of Cyprian of Carthage saying...

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Thinkingstuff, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Thinkingstuff

    Thinkingstuff
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    Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus?

    Both Orthodox and Catholics hold to this doctrine though the Catholic church furthered it in the Council of Basile/Florence. I understand that there are no Catholics here but a Catholic has told me this. I wonder what your statments or arguments (intelligently not rhetoric) would be.
     
  2. Zenas

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    It's understandable how this could be a Catholic doctrine because salvation comes through grace and grace comes through the sacraments. Since five of the seven sacraments must be administered by a priest or bishop (the other two being baptism and holy matrimony), it would be difficult for a Catholic to imagine salvation outside the church.

    Outside of Catholic thinking, there is considerable evidence that the church is inextricably tied up in the scheme of salvation.
    • Jesus started the church. Matthew 16:18.
    • All of the original Christians were members of the Jerusalem church.
    • So far as we know, Paul planted a church in every place he brought people to Christ.
    • We are commanded to come together for worship. Hebrews 10:25.
    I would never say never, but yes I am very skeptical of any claim that there is salvation outside the church.
     
  3. swaimj

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    "Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved." --Peter

    According to Peter, salvation is through Jesus. So I would say that salvation is not through the church. Jesus is the door through which people enter into the church. The church is not the door through whom people enter into Jesus.
     
  4. Matt Black

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    But the Church is the Body of Christ. To be in Christ, one must be in the Church. To give another Cyprian quote: "He cannot have God as his Father who does not have the Churh as his mother."
     
  5. Marcia

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    That's in the Roman Catholic catechism, or words similar.

    One is in the church when one believes in Christ, but the salvation is from Christ, not the church.
     
  6. Zenas

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    Should we take this to mean that you believe in the universal church?
     
  7. Matt Black

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    But the Church is His Body.
     
  8. Marcia

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    Depends on what you mean by that. I believe that all true believers in Christ are in the Body of Christ, and the church is considered the Body of Christ, is it not?

    I did not endorse this statement about the church being our "mother," I merely made a comment. In fact, I disagree with it; I do not think of the church as "my mother."
     
  9. swaimj

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    Matt, Ephesians 5:23 says "...Christ is the head of the church, and he is the saviour of the body". So, yes, the church is Christ's body, but Jesus is the saviour of that body. Therefore salvation is by Christ, not by the church.
     
  10. Zenas

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    The proposition is not, "No salvation except by the Church." The proposition is, "No salvation outside the Church." I think we all agree that Jesus saves, not the Church. But does Jesus save outside the purview of the Church?
     
  11. swaimj

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    This is what I have been trying to say on this thread, yet my statements seemingly have been contested. So, I am not certain that everyone who is posting on this thread agrees with this. Perhaps the different participants could clarify.

    "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body" says Paul. So, as I understand it, when a person is saved, they are baptized by the Holy Spirit and placed into the body of Christ; the church. I see this as a spiritual, universal, church. Aside from that, is it God's will for a person to belong to a tangible, local church. Yes. However, a person could be saved, yet disobedient in this area; perhaps willfully or perhaps ignorantly.

    Perhaps the true disagreement here is whether their is a universal church or whether there is a distinction between that universal church and the tangible church. Some might see the two as the same. I do not.
     
  12. Thinkingstuff

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    The primary problem I see with your statement is (bolded area) that baptist don't believe in a Universal church they believe in churches that are self autonomous unless they are part of a convention. So for baptist theology there is no Universal church. However, many baptist believe in a Universal Church that is invisible such a methodist, Baptist, Pentecostal, etc... are all saved under the same principle. But this isn't Baptist Doctrine in general but individual beliefs of members. The question is this. Is their an invisible church through which medium christ considers to be his true body. Or Does Christ have many churches and the Body applies to each churches (makes me think of multiple bodies) or does is their one visible church which medium Christ is properly proclaimed? Where do you stand?
     
  13. Marcia

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    There is no salvation outside of Christ. The statement, "There is no salvation outside the Church" does not make sense to me. If one believes, one is part of the body of Christ. If one does not believe, one is not part of the body of Christ.

    Only an inclusivist would say one could be saved and not be part of the body of Christ; or they would equate the body of Christ with non-christian beliefs/religions.
     
  14. swaimj

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    I know many many baptists who believe in a universal church. I graduated from a Baptist college and a Baptist seminary; both of which hold to a universal church. I think your generalization about Baptists is incorrect. However, there certainly are baptists who do not believe in a universal church.

    In the above quote, you seem to be saying that one can believe in a universal church or local churches, but not both. I hold to both positions. If I am misundestanding what you are saying, please clarify.

    Again, not to quibble, but there is really no such thing as baptist doctrine; at least not formally. There are baptist distinctives that are generally agreed upon.

    Yes, as I see it, the Universal church is invisible. It will be gathered together for its first meeting when Jesus comes back.

    Again, I refer you to the scripture I quoted. When a person is saved they are baptised by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ. The church--the universal church is made up of all people who place faith in Christ. This is automatic. Yes. Christ displays himself in the world through saved people.

    Yes, to this also. All over the world since Pentecost there have been local churches. These are made up of saved people who unite together based upon a shared understanding of God's word. In the book of Revelation, John writes letters to 7 churches in various locales.

    Again, there is a universal church made up of all believers. There are local churches made up of believers in a locale.

    There is no "one visible church".
     
  15. bound

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    And the Church is the People of God... what is the point?
     
  16. Matt Black

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    The point is, therefore, that to be 'in Christ', to be saved, is to be in the Church.

    [ETA - a friend of mine put it very well once. I was in one of my many bouts of depression and complained, "It's all very well having faith in Christ, but I can't see Him, can't feel Him, can't touch Him. He can't give me a hug." My friend replied, "That's why He left the Church - His Body - behind. We can give you a hug. The Church is 'Jesus-with-skin-on.'"]
     
    #16 Matt Black, Feb 16, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 16, 2009
  17. bound

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    I think that is all well and good until we begin to 'define' the Body of Christ to be 'here' or 'there' at the exclusion of 'those' and 'them'.

    "The wind bloweth where it listeth, thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit." (John 3:8)

    It seems that everyone who wishes to discuss 'the Church' typically desire to do so in an attempt to exclude. I think this is a grave activity for those whom claim to be spiritual and not carnal.
     

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