To what degree can we cooperate with members of the Catholic church and other churches?

I’m throwing this out here in large part because I’d like to get feedback from people on this issue, to help me in some of the organizational decisions I am making. Everyone who is in leadership has to make decisions about who they can work together with, and on what activities. Who we work with …

God unites his people for his purpose

Or: “In rebuilding the wall, Nehemiah prefigures Godly unity in the church”. Steve Hays is amazing. Sometimes I think he is not cognizant of what it means to be a mere mortal. The other day, he posted a link to “The wit and wisdom of Evan May” (Evan is a co-blogger at Triablogue). In doing …

How do we really know what God wants from us?

In response to a comment asking “how do we know?” I wrote: Who wants their faith to be formed around a legend? I certainly don’t. But that is the legacy of hundreds of years-worth of papal “history”. This the right question to ask. We all want to rest our faith on something certain, that’s not …

‘The Church’ in Roman Catholic Ecclesiology: is it the ‘Universal Sacrament of Salvation’? Or merely an idol?

The Roman Catholic Church, at Vatican II, called itself “the universal sacrament of salvation”. Here is how they put it: In later usage the term sacramentum emphasizes the visible sign of the hidden reality of salvation which was indicated by the term mysterium. In this sense, Christ himself is the mystery of salvation: “For there …

“Depraved or not depraved, that is the question”

And the answer is, “I trust that these exchanges can help bring fuller clarity and precision about these things.” We have an opportunity today that is unprecedented in the history of the Christian church. It’s an opportunity to discuss and resolve problems that would have (and did) cause major, long-term schisms in the past. And …

Who split the church?

A commenter at Beggars All, “steelikat,” posted this link — “Who split the Church?” — and I agree with him, “it’s a good thing that ‘the church’ is split.” A sample: Luther was excommunicated.  Why?  Because he criticized the sale of indulgences.  In the case that precipitated his nailing the theses to the door, a …

The Real Body of Christ

In my ongoing look at Ratzinger’s “Called to Communion,” I’m going to get a bit ahead of myself, thanks to some comments at James Swan’s blog. There, one commenter, Ben, has tried to suggest that “the Church IS Christ” (and given Rome’s self-infatuation, when you see the word “Church” with a capital “C”, you should …

Not Called to Communion: Preliminary Thoughts

A writer who identifies himself as Protestant, who has come under the influence of those folks at the Called to Communion website said this to me: Why should I listen to you? [Whatever you say on a given theological subject], that is your opinion. If you say I should listen to scripture, that is saying “listen …

Newman’s theory of development shattered

In Newman’s “Essay,” at the end of Chapter 3, Section 2, he suggests that “the one essential question is whether the recognized organ of teaching, the Church herself, acting through Pope or Council as the oracle of heaven, has ever contradicted her own enunciations. If so, the hypothesis which I am advocating is at once …

Claims of “church unity” are a lie

One of the most significant, Protestant-like “divisions” in the early church may be found in the simple designations of “The School of Antioch” or “The School of Alexandria,” both of which held differing views of Scripture, and later, of the person of Christ. This manifested itself in “The Great Schism,” a schism of church governments …