Sunday, December 26, 2010

Unity = Authenticity?

Does not the unity of the Roman Catholic church show that the infallible magisterium prevents such confusion as is seen outside of her?

Your premise is that Rome provides certainty and eliminates confusion resulting from doing as the noble Bereans did (Acts 17:11), even though fallible human reasoning (FHR) and private interpretation (PI ) must be used in regards to here. Consider,

1. Not all Roman Catholic teachings is infallible and thus can require assent of faith, for as non-infallible teachings of the Ordinary and General magisteriums may contain error, even if not salvific, then you can disagree with them to a certain degree.

2. The status of all Roman Catholic teaching is not clear, for while some are, many are not, and you cannot be certain how many there are, as there is no infallible list of all infallible teaching.

3. Infallible teaching as well as non-infallible teachings require some interpretation (as does deciding which ones do and to what extent) , a reality which has been abundantly evidenced.

4. As very little of the Bible has been infallibly defined, the Roman Catholic Bible interpreter has the liberty to adopt any interpretation of a passage that is not excluded with certainty by other passages of Scripture, or by the judgment of the magisterium, or the Church Fathers, or by the analogy of faith — all of which is subject to interpretation That is a great deal of liberty.

5. Roman Catholics widely disagree with each other and the church, including official teaching and which is implicitly allowed, and even more so on certain core moral and doctrinal issues that evangelicals. And her official unity is not necessarily any greater than that of any one single Protestant denomination, while unity itself is not the goal of the Godly.

As for unity, unity by itself is not the goal of the Godly, but unity that is of the Spirit is.

The type and means of unity determines its virtue. The greatest unity is typically found among groups in which unity is based upon unwarranted implicit trust in a self-proclaimed authority, which effectively presumes doctrinal supremacy over the Scriptures. And by inculcating seeing themselves as an exclusive, supreme particular organization. And the more this is inculcated and required, the greater that type of unity.

Thus the Watchtower society and Rome manifest greater doctrinal and cohesive unity than that of individual Protestant groups (whose identity directly in Christ, versus as part of an institution, allows them to move around more), although as regards doctrinal unity among individual Catholics, evidence shows that Rome fails to manifest more unity in key truths and moral values than evangelicals as a whole. But it demonstrates a greater quantitative unity based upon its doctrinal position that it is the one true church, even if, unlike the Watchtower Society, its members may somewhat disagree among things that are not are infallibly defined, while disagreement as regards the latter is greatly tolerated.

However, what we see in the New Testament church is not a unity based upon unwarranted implicit trust in an formulaic assuredly infallible magisterium, but which was the result of souls being persuaded by "manifestation of the truth" (2Cor. 4:2), in which the authority of the apostles and their message was established as being from God by conformity to men and writings which had previously been established as being from God, and by Scriptural Divine attestation.
Rome critically fails in both, as its primary claim and certain of its key teachings fail of Scriptural warrant, and are contrary to it. And it overall fails to manifest that it is the church of the living God. And instead such teachings and her primary claim to be the one true church are effectively are based upon her own self-proclaimed supremacy over the Scriptures.

Complete comprehensive unity has ever a goal of the church, though unity of heart and mind in surrender to Christ to do His will as revealed was realized at certain times, and is today among some took a strong degree and yet can be.

And in the days to come it is only as the church has this heart and is in conformity to the Scriptures, including its preaching the Gospel which results in manifestly supernaturally transformed lives and other acts of grace, will it be manifest as being the church of the living God, and withstand the onslaught of those who are gathered together against the Lord and His anointed. (Acts 4:26; cf. Ps. 2:2; 83:3-5) Whose quantitative unity manifests that unity in error is inferior to division because of truth, (1Cor. l1:19) and the unity that results from it. To God be the glory.

The mistake of such can easily be that of creating a model of the perfect church - in which communal living is that primary distinctive, focusing on Acts 2:45-47; 4:32.34-37, and by which they consciously see and contrast themselves as superior to all others - and which model they promote and focus on becoming, more so it seems than focusing on Christ and exalting him, (which i think Rose Creek village tends to do), and preaching the gospel which saves sinners wherever they may be.
And or they follow a Christ-like figure or body which fosters or requires implicit obedience and squash its quashes sincere questioning of its teachings.

But what i think most attempts to replicate the year the church leave out is that the first church was led by apostles whose leadership was manifested by unselfish devotion to Christ, and prayer in the word, (Acts 6:3) with holiness and preaching which conformed to and complemented that which was written, and whose Divine authority was established by powerful supernatural attestation from God.

And that it was not all about holding all things common and living and eating their meals as a body, or simply about prayer and teaching, but about the contrite and reverential hearts of the converted, and positive as well as "negative" miracles done by men whose hearts were the same.
"And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles."
"And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness."

" And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all."

"And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon's porch. And of the rest durst no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them." (Acts 2:43; 4:31,33; 5:12,13)

However, the inclusion of the latter does not promote what is typically seen today among those who believe in supernatural gifts, with its emphasis on health and wealth and leaders who live in mansions or five-star hotels.

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I will try to respond to comments within one or two days after I see a response, however, this has not been where I usually engage in dialogue.
Please try to be reasonable, willing to examine things prayerfully and objectively, and refrain from "rants" and profane language, especially regarding God and the Christan faith. The latter type are subject to removal on this Christian blog, but I do try to help people no matter who they are. May all know the grace of God in truth.