Come Hell or High Water, part 6

Eagle in Flight
“And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness…” (Revelation 12:14)

As we noted in our previous installment, Revelation 12 is an Exodus narrative in which the Woman is depicted as fleeing from the error of the devil and seeking her place in the wilderness. In a word, she leaves. The Church simply departs, and takes up refuge in the Wilderness, and is nourished there by Her Savior. In that installment, we provided evidence of the objections of Ærius, Jovinianus, Vigilantius, Sarmatio and Barbatianus to the novelties being introduced in the latter part of the 4th century. These men, according to the historical record, were all taking their leave of the company of error and striking out on a separate path (except Jovinianus, who was apparently imprisoned for his objections).

The testimony of these Protestants, and the evidence of their departure, is important because the typical Roman Catholic, referring to the Reformation, will ask why it took the “true church” 1,500 years to respond to and correct errors that arose in the early centuries. That typical Roman Catholic, assuming Roman Catholicism was the only expression of Christianity until the 16th century, will also ask where the “true church” was all that time.

The answers to these questions are simple: It did not take 1,500 years, and the “true church” never stopped existing. When Roman Catholicism manifested as a religion in the latter part of the 4th century, it did so as the great “falling away” of 2 Thessalonians 2:3. Roman Catholicism arose from within the ranks of the church, just as Paul and Peter had warned, “speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them” (Acts 20:30), and “who privily shall bring in damnable heresies” (2 Peter 2:1). The “true church” immediately Protested against the perversions and heresies, and was preserved intact as a beacon of truth in the wilderness, orthodox in her doctrine and evangelical in her preaching, but unwilling to bend the knee to the religion of Rome.

Two women therefore had found their places in the wilderness. On the one hand was the pure Woman of Revelation 12, arrayed in the beauty of the heavens and protected from errors of the devil (Revelation 12:1,6,14), and on the other was the great city of Rome, “mother of harlots and abominations of the earth,” and arrayed in earthly encumbrances (Revelation 17:4,5,18). Roman Catholicism, captivated by her earthly beauty, had taken up residence there, and was carried away by the flood of error. From their respective vantage points in the wilderness, these two religions vied for the souls of men, Rome purveying the novelties of Satan upon the lost, and the Church of Christ resisting them at every turn.

As we have shown in the preceding posts, the protests against the late 4th century novelties were abundant. As Vigilantius observed,

“Under the cloak of religion we see what is all but a heathen ceremony introduced into the churches” (Jerome, Against Vigilantius, paragraph 4).

What Vigilantius was seeing was the flood of error that John prophesied in Revelation 12:15. It was overtaking all but the elect. Examples of the protests go well beyond Ærius, Jovinianus, Vigilantius, Sarmatio and Barbatianus, and include more doctrinal issues than just the matters of episcopal power, consecrated virginity and the celibate priesthood.

At the end of the 4th century the novelty of Mary’s virginity in partu was also being introduced. Jovinianus immediately raised a protest against it, insisting instead that Christ’s birth had been normal. The very idea of Jesus passing through the womb like a phantom smacked of Docetism, a denial of the reality of the incarnation.  Tertullian of earlier ages had been aghast, for example, because they “who represented the flesh of Christ to be imaginary” were “equally able to pass off His nativity as a phantom” (Tertullian, The Flesh of Christ, paragraph 1). To counter the argument, Tertullian insisted that Jesus’ birth had been normal, precisely because Christ’s flesh had been real, and therefore that Mary was a virgin until the Christ Child physically opened her womb:

“[S]he was ‘a virgin,’ so far as (abstinence) from a husband went, and ‘yet not a virgin,’ as regards her bearing a child. … Indeed she ought rather to be called not a virgin than a virgin, becoming a mother at a leap, as it were, before she was a wife.” (Tertullian, The Flesh of Christ, chapter 23)

Origen had argued similarly on the opening of Mary’s womb through childbirth:

“In the case of every other woman, it is not the birth of an infant but intercourse with a man that opens the womb. But the womb of the Lord’s mother was opened at the time when her offspring was brought forth …”  (Origen, Homilies on Luke, Homily 14, paragraphs 7-8).

Such language as this is now verboten in Roman Catholic circles, for in Rome it is maintained  that Mary delivered Christ without pain, without tearing, without blood, and in such a manner that her physical virginity was not compromised in the process. But like so many other Roman Catholic novelties, this can only be traced to the latter part of the 4th century, as evidenced by Monsignor Arthur Calkins’ defense of the antiquity of the dogma:

“The fact is that the mystery of Mary’s virginity in giving birth to the Savior was preached and taught consistently by the Fathers and Doctors of the Church. One finds beautiful expositions of it in the homilies and catecheses of St. Gregory of Nyssa (+ c. 394), St. Ambrose (+ 397), St. John Chrysostom (+ 407), St. Proclus of Constantinople (+ 446), Theodotus of Ancyra (+ before 446), St. Peter Chrysologus (+ 450), Pope St. Leo the Great (+ 461), Severus of Antioch (+ 538), St. Romanos the Melodist (+ c. 560), St. Venantius Fortunatus (+ c. 600), and Pope St. Gregory the Great (+ 604).” (Our Lady’s Virginity in Giving Birth, Monsignor Arthur Calkins)

Lest we miss an opportunity to highlight the obvious, note that the Roman Catholic apologist struggles to trace the origins of the dogma to a time earlier than the latter part of the 4th century. Jerome taught the error, too, trying to liken the passage of Christ’s physical body through the “closed doors” of Mary’s womb to the miraculous passage of Christ’s physical body through the closed doors of the upper room without opening them (John 20:19). But Jerome was running into resistance, for he complained of his critics:

“Let my critics explain to me how Jesus can have entered in through closed doors when He allowed His hands and His side to be handled, and showed that He had bones and flesh, thus proving that His was a true body and no mere phantom of one, and I will explain how the holy Mary can be at once a mother and a virgin. A mother before she was wedded, she remained a virgin after bearing her son.” (Jerome, Letter 48, paragraph 21)

The alleged preservation of Mary’s virginity in partu was just another novelty being introduced to the Church. The earlier generations had relegated the story to the mythology of the gnostics, but Jerome was bent on re-introducing it as an apostolic truth, and the Church resisted.

Cyril of Jerusalem also complained that people were not embracing his novelties. We will highlight two here: the veneration of the True Cross and prayers for the dead. Regarding the “True Cross,” Cyril was proposing a devotion to the True Cross, and claimed that by his day it had already been “distributed piecemeal from hence to all the world” (Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lecture 13, paragraph 19). Those who heard of his nonsense accused him of “inventing subtleties,” and refused to believe:

“But some one will say to me, ‘You are inventing subtleties; show me from some prophet the Wood of the Cross; unless you give me a testimony from a prophet, I will not be persuaded.'” (Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lecture 13, paragraph 19)

These Catechetical Lectures date, by some reckoning, to about 350 A.D., others placing them possibly as early as 348 A.D.. They are the first known references to the legend of the True Cross, and even the hapless Catholic Encyclopedia reluctantly acknowledges the glaring silence on the fate of the wood of the cross until Cyril. But “however difficult it may be to explain this silence,” the Encyclopedia rationalizes, we should rest assured that there must be some truth to it, because, after all, it was accepted as a “universal tradition” at least  “since the beginning of the fifth century” (Catholic Encyclopedia, Archæology of the Cross and Crucifix). Accustomed as we are, however, to the flood of Roman Catholic novelties that were spreading throughout the known world in the latter half of the 4th century, we hardly find such assurances compelling. What is assuring is that an objection was raised to the novelty.

Cyril was at the same time introducing intercession of the saints and prayers for the dead, and for this too he was running into similar objections. In his explanation of the prayers during the Lord’s Supper, Cyril complained that so “many” were objecting to the novelty:

“Then we commemorate also those who have fallen asleep before us, first Patriarchs, Prophets, Apostles, Martyrs, that at their prayers and intercessions God would receive our petition. … And I wish to persuade you by an illustration. For I know that many say, ‘What is a soul profited, which departs from this world either with sins, or without sins, if it be commemorated in the prayer?'” (Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, Lecture 23, paragraphs 9-10)

That Cyril felt compelled to “persuade” the new catechumens against what “many say” against him, suggests that the protestation against the novelty was not a small one. Indeed, Ærius of Sebaste, as we noted last week, had objected to that very practice (Epiphanius, Panarion 3.1.75, 3.5).

In other areas, similar signs of protest were appearing. Jerome, registering a hyperbolic objection, was shocked to hear that men of Vigilantius’ stripe were taking seriously the Scriptural imperative that the qualification of a deacon is that he manage his household and children well (1 Timothy 3:12). The implications of such a mandate were shameful to Jerome:

“Shameful to relate, there are bishops who are said to be associated with him in his wickedness— if at least they are to be called bishops— who ordain no deacons but such as have been previously married; who … unless the candidates for ordination appear before them with pregnant wives, and infants wailing in the arms of their mothers, will not administer to them Christ’s ordinance.” (Jerome, Against Vigilantius, paragraph 2)

Ambrose, too, was disappointed to relate that in the remoter regions of his own parish, there were some ministers who were not only married, but were still having conjugal relations with their wives:

“But ye know that the ministerial office must be kept pure and unspotted, and must not be defiled by conjugal intercourse; … I am mentioning this, because in some out-of-the-way places, when they enter on the ministry, or even when they become priests, they have begotten children. They defend this on the ground of old custom, when, as it happened, the sacrifice was offered up at long intervals.” (Ambrose, On the Duties of the Clergy, Chapter 50, paragraph 258)

We provide these many data points in order to demonstrate a little known fact of history. Roman Catholicism did not rise to worldly prominence by acclamation. There were many, many objections raised by the people of God against Rome’s perversions and heresies. Christians did not agree with the “invented subtleties” being purveyed upon the saints or the novelties being “introduced into the churches.” They did not approve of the errors taking root as if they were apostolic truths—Passover sacrifices, prayers for the dead, intercession of saints and martyrs, bowing down to relics, kneeling before and kissing the “true cross,” the celibate priesthood, the magnification and mythologizing of Mary, the new civil power of the episcopate.

Roman Catholics and their apologists will want to insist that there was no objection to, and no Protest against, Roman Catholic doctrines until the 16th century. But the historical records show otherwise: there were more than a few voices of protest, in fact many, many more than just Ærius, Jovinianus, Vigilantius, Sarmatio and Barbatianus. That protest against Roman Catholicism arose just when we would expect it: in the latter part of the 4th century when Roman Catholicism was born.

Along with that evidence, there is evidence of a separate Protestant church flourishing from this time forward, and causing no small difficulty for Roman Catholicism. Rome had not risen to prominence without objections, and those who raised the objections were persistent in their protest. They had gone to a place in the wilderness, but they had not stopped preaching the Word of God. As we noted in our previous post, the last we heard of Vigilantius was that had taken up refuge in the Alps, had converted the bishop of the diocese to his cause (Jerome, Epistle 109, paragraph 2), and from that position was living as a bandit, making successful “raids upon the churches of Gaul,” where he had the support of the people (Jerome, Against Vigilantius, paragraph 4). Jerome reported these events around 406 A.D..

By 432 A.D., Pope Celeste I had to write to the bishops of Gaul about the persistent problem of people raising “indiscreet questions” (indisciplinatas quæstiones) in churches there, and had to correct the presbyters there who were complicit in “allowing them to preach against the truth” (pertinaciter eos dicant praedicare adversantia veritati) (Celeste, Epistle 1, Ad Episcopos Galliæ; see Poisson, Nicolas Joseph, Delectus actorum ecclesiae universalis, (Lugdunum: Deville (1738) col 177). In his second letter, Celeste wrote to the Bishops of Vienne and Narbonne, expressing concern that foreign priests, well educated in the Scriptures “had been disguising themselves as pilgrims and strangers” and were preaching things “contrary to the custom of the Church.” Celeste’s remarkable complaint was that these “foreign priests” were in fact teaching in accordance with the letter of the Scriptures, but not according to the Spirit (credunt se Scripturae fidem, non per Spiritum, sed per literam completuros). Additionally, they were apparently denying last rights to the dying (pœnitentiam morientibus denegari) (Celeste, Epistle 2, Ad Episcopos provinciæ Viennensis & Narbonensis; see Poisson, cols. 181-184), suggesting opposition to the Roman Catholic sacrament of extreme unction.

These references to Roman Catholicism’s problems in Gaul would not have caught our attention were it not for the complaints of Jerome earlier in the 5th century that the errors of Vigilantius and Jovinianus had taken root there. And Celeste’s epistle warning of the foreign priests disguised as “pilgrims and strangers” would not have been so notable, were it not for the fact that Vienne and Narbonne were at the limits of Vigilantius’ influence, “between the Adriatic and the Alps of King Cotius,” according to Jerome’s last description of his whereabouts (Jerome, Epistle 109, paragraph 2).

Notable, as well, is the fact that Archbishop Boniface in Germany, by the middle of eighth century, had written to Pope Zachary to complain that there was a full-fledged church operating there independently of Rome, wandering about in his diocese, its ministers “disguised under the name of bishops or priests,” meeting in “separate assemblies,” and “in strange places.” Just like in the days of Vigilantius, and similar to the concerns raised by Celeste, these “false vagabonds” engaged in a ministry of “deceiving the people” and perplexing and troubling the ministers of Rome. Remarkably, the members of this competing Church were “more numerous than the Catholics,” and as in Vigilantius’ day, they were being defended by the populace against the Roman bishops:

“As for the priests whom your fraternity report to have found who are more numerous than the Catholics, wandering about, disguised under the name of bishops or priests, not ordained by Catholic bishops, who deceive the people, perplex and trouble the ministers of the church, they are false vagabonds, adulterers, murderers, effeminate, sacrilegious hypocrites, the greater part tonsured slaves who have fled from their masters, servants of the devil transformed into ministers of Christ, who live as they list, being without bishops, having partisans to defend them against the bishops, that they may not attack their irregular lives, who meet in separate assemblies, with persons that abet their proceedings, and exercise their erroneous ministry not in a Catholic church, but in strange places, in the cellars of country-people, where their stupid folly may be concealed from the bishops.” (Pope Zachary, Epistle X to Boniface; for original, see Sacrosancta Concilia, Tomus Sextus (Lutetiæ Parisiorum, 1671) cols 1518-1522)

What is of particular interest here is that Archbishop Boniface (c. 675 – 754 A.D.) was a missionary to Germany when he encountered this “non-Catholic” Church already so well established. He was therefore confounded in his attempts to preach Romanism and ran into obstacles at every turn. The Catholic Encyclopedia briefly acknowledges the existence of this “non-Catholic” church encountered by Boniface, and complains that they “taught doctrines and made use of ceremonies at variance with the teaching and use of the Roman Church, especially in regard to the celebration of Easter, the conferring of baptism, celibacy, [and] the papal and episcopal authority” (Catholic Encyclopedia, Saint Boniface).

In this series, we will continue this survey of history from the late 4th century rise of Roman Catholicism and the perseverance of the Woman of Revelation to the dawn of the Reformation. This week we simply desire to highlight the historical fact that the Protest against Roman Catholicism was not delayed 1,500 years as Roman Catholics imagine. Additionally, by their own accounts, there really was a separate religion consistent with the Scriptures, evangelizing the lost, always accused of invading the churches, and teaching doctrines at variance with Rome’s late 4th century novelties.

239 thoughts on “Come Hell or High Water, part 6”

  1. I had shivers reading this. Our ancestors! Indeed. So interesting Tim. I’m praying that at the end of your tireless work there will be the most concise and powerful refutation both historically and eschatologicaly against the beast there ever was. Thank you.

    1. Kevin,
      I had the same shivers when I read Irenaeus’s comments on the Eucharist. Now you say “Our ancestors”. Really? I am quite familiar with this remnant theory as in the Church of Christ the concept of true believers in the wilderness prior to the Protestant Reformation which of course they consider to have been Church of Christ members is taught to their Church members. It seems there is a yearning among Protestant groups to establish some type of Historical continuity of their Churches despite the fact that I am not aware of any of those groups of “early Protestants” that Timothy K believes he has found that have follower’s today . As Mark Rome has repeatedly pointed out the best the current discussants can do is trace their Church back to John Calvin.
      Now Tertullian was mentioned, he who left the Church to become a Montanist but before becoming a Protestant wrote

      2.Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity. In his Prescription Against Heretics, he explicitly challenges heretics to produce evidence of the apostolic succession of their communities.[36] “Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men—a man, moreover, who continued steadfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed.”

      So Kevin, was Tertullian your ancestor before he left the Catholic Church or after he left and guided by the Holy Spirit followed the 2nd century Phrygian prophet Montanus. Interestingly I didn’t realize that Tertullian eventually left the Montanist, ( they apparently were not strict enough) and Tertullian founded his own sect. That sure sounds very Protestant to me.

      And I also am surprised that Timothy K did not include a discussion of the most famous early Protestant Arius. Arius of course based his teaching that the Father alone is God on Sola Scriptura, his interpretation of the Bible. And of course Athanasius and the other orthodox Church Fathers fought back based on Scripture and SACRED TRADITION. So Kevin, do you consider Arius as one of your ancestors and if not, why not?
      Now interesting to me Kevin is under these ancestors that you claim is a group whose members included those who proclaimed themselves as priest Timothy K wrote

      “Notable, as well, is the fact that Archbishop Boniface in Germany, by the middle of eighth century, had written to Pope Zachary to complain that there was a full-fledged church operating there independently of Rome, wandering about in his diocese, its ministers “disguised under the name of bishops or priests,” meeting in “separate assemblies,” and “in strange places.” Just like in the days of Vigilantius, and similar to the concerns raised by Celeste, these “false vagabonds” engaged in a ministry of “deceiving the people” and perplexing and troubling the ministers of Rome. Remarkably, the members of this competing Church were “more numerous than the Catholics,” and as in Vigilantius’ day, they were being defended by the populace against the Roman bishops:

      “As for the priests whom your fraternity report to have found who are more numerous than the Catholics, wandering about, disguised under the name of bishops or priests, not ordained by Catholic bishops, who deceive the people, perplex and trouble the ministers of the church, they are false vagabonds, adulterers, murderers, effeminate, sacrilegious hypocrites, the greater part tonsured slaves who have fled from their masters, servants of the devil transformed into ministers of Christ, who live as they list, being without bishops, having partisans to defend them against the bishops, that they may not attack their irregular lives, who meet in separate assemblies, with persons that abet their proceedings, and exercise their erroneous ministry not in a Catholic church, but in strange places, in the cellars of country-people, where their stupid folly may be concealed from the bishops.” (Pope Zachary, Epistle X to Boniface; for original, see Sacrosancta Concilia, Tomus Sextus (Lutetiæ Parisiorum, 1671) cols 1518-1522)”

      So Kevin, this true remnant whose leaders claimed to be priest, are they part of your ancestors?

      The problem is of course that the followers of Montanus, Tertullian, Arius and the non -Catholic Church in Germany that Boniface encountered according to Timothy K are no longer with us as far as I know. Timothy K wrote

      ” What is of particular interest here is that Archbishop Boniface (c. 675 – 754 A.D.) was a missionary to Germany when he encountered this “non-Catholic” Church already so well established”

      Well I guess they weren’t that well established because it appears they have fallen off the radar. So if you can prove the Presbyterian Church existed before the Protestant Reformation I would be glad to look at your evidence. And if to be one of your ancestors all one has to do is protest against the Catholic Church maybe you should include Arius, Tertullian, the Gnostics and every heretical group up to the Reformation in your list of ancestors. Fair enough. By the way, what happened to Mark Rome and Rocky? Are they both banned?

      1. Timothy P, you wrote,

        “It seems there is a yearning among Protestant groups to establish some type of Historical continuity”

        As I have pointed out there is a longing among Roman Catholics to trace their religion even to the age of Nicæa and they are unable to do so. You continued,

        “…despite the fact that I am not aware of any of those groups of ‘early Protestants’ that Timothy K believes he has found that have follower’s today.”

        There were no “followers” of early Protestants in the days of Vigilantius, and there are still no “followers” of early Protestants today. Protestants don’t “follow” a mere man or a mere denomination, but their Shepherd in heaven. You continued,

        “As Mark Rome has repeatedly pointed out the best the current discussants can do is trace their Church back to John Calvin.”

        Well, Mark Rome has alleged as much, but Mark Rome alleges a lot of things. However, what can be demonstrated by the historical record is that the best Roman Catholicism can do trace its religion to the latter part of the 4th century. You continued,

        Now Tertullian was mentioned, he who left the Church to become a Montanist but before becoming a Protestant wrote “2.Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity. In his Prescription Against Heretics…”

        But you know very well, Timothy P, that Tertullian did not write what you have attributed to him. What you have provided as Tertullian’s writings is merely a cut and paste from Wikipedia on Tertullian. Tertullian would not have written, “Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity…”

        While Wikipedia is correct that Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity, what Tertullian also wrote (and he actually wrote this), was that the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching:

        “Come now, you who would indulge a better curiosity, if you would apply it to the business of your salvation, run over the apostolic churches, in which the very thrones of the apostles are still pre-eminent in their places, in which their own authentic writings are read, uttering the voice and representing the face of each of them severally.” (Tertullian, Prescription Against Heretics, chapter 36)

        He concludes that chapter with as good a description of the heresy of Roman Catholicism as any:

        “In the same way heresies, too, come from our plant, although not of our kind; (they come) from the grain of truth, but, owing to their falsehood, they have only wild leaves to show.”

        Yes, Roman Catholicism fell away from us, the true church, and came “from our plant, although not of our kind,” and because they were carried away with the flood of error from the Serpent’s mouth in the latter part of the 4th century, “they have only wild leaves to show.” Thus while we follow Christ, you follow after the kissing and kneeling to the cross and relics, the gnostic myth of the in partu virginity of Mary, the Primacy of Rome and its bishop, the immaculacy of Mary, her bodily assumption, the worship of the bread, prayers for the dead, prayers to the dead, the sacrifice of the mass, etc…, etc…, etc…

        Of course we could keep saying the same thing back and forth (and frankly you could do much better than your cut and paste apologetics), but what it comes down to is the eschatological and the historical argument. So, Timothy P, I asked you a little more than a week ago (you may have missed it, which I understand) how you would find the True Church if you could not appeal to the escahtological or the historical argument. Here is the comment so you won’t have to look it up:

        Timothy P, you said to Kevin, “Now notice Kevin there was no mention of an effort to find the Church that Christ established.”

        Without making a historical or eschatological argument, how would you go about finding that Church?

        Thanks,

        Tim

        So, Timothy P, how would you find the true church with out making a historical or eschatological argument?

        That’s what this really all comes down to. Can you do it?

        Thanks,

        Tim

        1. Timothy K, you wrote

          “As I have pointed out there is a longing among Roman Catholics to trace their religion even to the age of Nicæa and they are unable to do so. ”

          Well I hate to cut and paste again but obviously it’s pretty easy to pull up a list of the popes. What I find so interesting is the number of antipopes that have popped up over the years but the Church has remained intact, full filling Christ’s promise to Peter that the gates of hell would not prevail over Christ’s Church. All of these antipopes have basically failed in dividing up Christ’s Church. I am not aware of any Christian groups today that are followers of one of these antipopes. In a thousand years the Catholic church will still be here if the World still exists but I doubt the Presbyterian Church will still be in existence because it will continue to splinter off.

          1.St. Peter (32-67)
          2.St. Linus (67-76)
          3.St. Anacletus (Cletus) (76-88)
          4.St. Clement I (88-97)
          5.St. Evaristus (97-105)
          6.St. Alexander I (105-115)
          7.St. Sixtus I (115-125) Also called Xystus I
          8.St. Telesphorus (125-136)
          9.St. Hyginus (136-140)
          10.St. Pius I (140-155)
          11.St. Anicetus (155-166)
          12.St. Soter (166-175)
          13.St. Eleutherius (175-189)
          14.St. Victor I (189-199)
          15.St. Zephyrinus (199-217)
          16.St. Callistus I (217-22) Callistus and the following three popes were opposed by St. Hippolytus, antipope (217-236)
          17.St. Urban I (222-30)
          18.St. Pontain (230-35)
          19.St. Anterus (235-36)
          20.St. Fabian (236-50)
          21.St. Cornelius (251-53) Opposed by Novatian, antipope (251)
          22.St. Lucius I (253-54)
          23.St. Stephen I (254-257)
          24.St. Sixtus II (257-258)
          25.St. Dionysius (260-268)
          26.St. Felix I (269-274)
          27.St. Eutychian (275-283)
          28.St. Caius (283-296) Also called Gaius
          29.St. Marcellinus (296-304)
          30.St. Marcellus I (308-309)
          31.St. Eusebius (309 or 310)
          32.St. Miltiades (311-14)
          33.St. Sylvester I (314-35)
          34.St. Marcus (336)
          35.St. Julius I (337-52)
          36.Liberius (352-66) Opposed by Felix II, antipope (355-365)
          37.St. Damasus I (366-84) Opposed by Ursicinus, antipope (366-367)
          38.St. Siricius (384-99)
          39.St. Anastasius I (399-401)
          40.St. Innocent I (401-17)
          41.St. Zosimus (417-18)
          42.St. Boniface I (418-22) Opposed by Eulalius, antipope (418-419)
          43.St. Celestine I (422-32)
          44.St. Sixtus III (432-40)
          45.St. Leo I (the Great) (440-61)
          46.St. Hilarius (461-68)
          47.St. Simplicius (468-83)
          48.St. Felix III (II) (483-92)
          49.St. Gelasius I (492-96)
          50.Anastasius II (496-98)
          51.St. Symmachus (498-514) Opposed by Laurentius, antipope (498-501)
          52.St. Hormisdas (514-23)
          53.St. John I (523-26)
          54.St. Felix IV (III) (526-30)
          55.Boniface II (530-32) Opposed by Dioscorus, antipope (530)
          56.John II (533-35)
          57.St. Agapetus I (535-36) Also called Agapitus I
          58.St. Silverius (536-37)
          59.Vigilius (537-55)
          60.Pelagius I (556-61)
          61.John III (561-74)
          62.Benedict I (575-79)
          63.Pelagius II (579-90)
          64.St. Gregory I (the Great) (590-604)
          65.Sabinian (604-606)
          66.Boniface III (607)
          67.St. Boniface IV (608-15)
          68.St. Deusdedit (Adeodatus I) (615-18)
          69.Boniface V (619-25)
          70.Honorius I (625-38)
          71.Severinus (640)
          72.John IV (640-42)
          73.Theodore I (642-49)
          74.St. Martin I (649-55)
          75.St. Eugene I (655-57)
          76.St. Vitalian (657-72)
          77.Adeodatus (II) (672-76)
          78.Donus (676-78)
          79.St. Agatho (678-81)
          80.St. Leo II (682-83)
          81.St. Benedict II (684-85)
          82.John V (685-86)
          83.Conon (686-87)
          84.St. Sergius I (687-701) Opposed by Theodore and Paschal, antipopes (687)
          85.John VI (701-05)
          86.John VII (705-07)
          87.Sisinnius (708)
          88.Constantine (708-15)
          89.St. Gregory II (715-31)
          90.St. Gregory III (731-41)
          91.St. Zachary (741-52) Stephen II followed Zachary, but because he died before being consecrated, modern lists omit him
          92.Stephen II (III) (752-57)
          93.St. Paul I (757-67)
          94.Stephen III (IV) (767-72) Opposed by Constantine II (767) and Philip (768), antipopes (767)
          95.Adrian I (772-95)
          96.St. Leo III (795-816)
          97.Stephen IV (V) (816-17)
          98.St. Paschal I (817-24)
          99.Eugene II (824-27)
          100.Valentine (827)
          101.Gregory IV (827-44)
          102.Sergius II (844-47) Opposed by John, antipope
          103.St. Leo IV (847-55)
          104.Benedict III (855-58) Opposed by Anastasius, antipope (855)
          105.St. Nicholas I (the Great) (858-67)
          106.Adrian II (867-72)
          107.John VIII (872-82)
          108.Marinus I (882-84)
          109.St. Adrian III (884-85)
          110.Stephen V (VI) (885-91)
          111.Formosus (891-96)
          112.Boniface VI (896)
          113.Stephen VI (VII) (896-97)
          114.Romanus (897)
          115.Theodore II (897)
          116.John IX (898-900)
          117.Benedict IV (900-03)
          118.Leo V (903) Opposed by Christopher, antipope (903-904)
          119.Sergius III (904-11)
          120.Anastasius III (911-13)
          121.Lando (913-14)
          122.John X (914-28)
          123.Leo VI (928)
          124.Stephen VIII (929-31)
          125.John XI (931-35)
          126.Leo VII (936-39)
          127.Stephen IX (939-42)
          128.Marinus II (942-46)
          129.Agapetus II (946-55)
          130.John XII (955-63)
          131.Leo VIII (963-64)
          132.Benedict V (964)
          133.John XIII (965-72)
          134.Benedict VI (973-74)
          135.Benedict VII (974-83) Benedict and John XIV were opposed by Boniface VII, antipope (974; 984-985)
          136.John XIV (983-84)
          137.John XV (985-96)
          138.Gregory V (996-99) Opposed by John XVI, antipope (997-998)
          139.Sylvester II (999-1003)
          140.John XVII (1003)
          141.John XVIII (1003-09)
          142.Sergius IV (1009-12)
          143.Benedict VIII (1012-24) Opposed by Gregory, antipope (1012)
          144.John XIX (1024-32)
          145.Benedict IX (1032-45) He appears on this list three separate times, because he was twice deposed and restored
          146.Sylvester III (1045) Considered by some to be an antipope
          147.Benedict IX (1045)
          148.Gregory VI (1045-46)
          149.Clement II (1046-47)
          150.Benedict IX (1047-48)
          151.Damasus II (1048)
          152.St. Leo IX (1049-54)
          153.Victor II (1055-57)
          154.Stephen X (1057-58)
          155.Nicholas II (1058-61) Opposed by Benedict X, antipope (1058)
          156.Alexander II (1061-73) Opposed by Honorius II, antipope (1061-1072)
          157.St. Gregory VII (1073-85) Gregory and the following three popes were opposed by Guibert (“Clement III”), antipope (1080-1100)
          158.Blessed Victor III (1086-87)
          159.Blessed Urban II (1088-99)
          160.Paschal II (1099-1118) Opposed by Theodoric (1100), Aleric (1102) and Maginulf (“Sylvester IV”, 1105-1111), antipopes (1100)
          161.Gelasius II (1118-19) Opposed by Burdin (“Gregory VIII”), antipope (1118)
          162.Callistus II (1119-24)
          163.Honorius II (1124-30) Opposed by Celestine II, antipope (1124)
          164.Innocent II (1130-43) Opposed by Anacletus II (1130-1138) and Gregory Conti (“Victor IV”) (1138), antipopes (1138)
          165.Celestine II (1143-44)
          166.Lucius II (1144-45)
          167.Blessed Eugene III (1145-53)
          168.Anastasius IV (1153-54)
          169.Adrian IV (1154-59)
          170.Alexander III (1159-81) Opposed by Octavius (“Victor IV”) (1159-1164), Pascal III (1165-1168), Callistus III (1168-1177) and Innocent III (1178-1180), antipopes
          171.Lucius III (1181-85)
          172.Urban III (1185-87)
          173.Gregory VIII (1187)
          174.Clement III (1187-91)
          175.Celestine III (1191-98)
          176.Innocent III (1198-1216)
          177.Honorius III (1216-27)
          178.Gregory IX (1227-41)
          179.Celestine IV (1241)
          180.Innocent IV (1243-54)
          181.Alexander IV (1254-61)
          182.Urban IV (1261-64)
          183.Clement IV (1265-68)
          184.Blessed Gregory X (1271-76)
          185.Blessed Innocent V (1276)
          186.Adrian V (1276)
          187.John XXI (1276-77)
          188.Nicholas III (1277-80)
          189.Martin IV (1281-85)
          190.Honorius IV (1285-87)
          191.Nicholas IV (1288-92)
          192.St. Celestine V (1294)
          193.Boniface VIII (1294-1303)
          194.Blessed Benedict XI (1303-04)
          195.Clement V (1305-14)
          196.John XXII (1316-34) Opposed by Nicholas V, antipope (1328-1330)
          197.Benedict XII (1334-42)
          198.Clement VI (1342-52)
          199.Innocent VI (1352-62)
          200.Blessed Urban V (1362-70)
          201.Gregory XI (1370-78)
          202.Urban VI (1378-89) Opposed by Robert of Geneva (“Clement VII”), antipope (1378-1394)
          203.Boniface IX (1389-1404) Opposed by Robert of Geneva (“Clement VII”) (1378-1394), Pedro de Luna (“Benedict XIII”) (1394-1417) and Baldassare Cossa (“John XXIII”) (1400-1415), antipopes
          204.Innocent VII (1404-06) Opposed by Pedro de Luna (“Benedict XIII”) (1394-1417) and Baldassare Cossa (“John XXIII”) (1400-1415), antipopes
          205.Gregory XII (1406-15) Opposed by Pedro de Luna (“Benedict XIII”) (1394-1417), Baldassare Cossa (“John XXIII”) (1400-1415), and Pietro Philarghi (“Alexander V”) (1409-1410), antipopes
          206.Martin V (1417-31)
          207.Eugene IV (1431-47) Opposed by Amadeus of Savoy (“Felix V”), antipope (1439-1449)
          208.Nicholas V (1447-55)
          209.Callistus III (1455-58)
          210.Pius II (1458-64)
          211.Paul II (1464-71)
          212.Sixtus IV (1471-84)
          213.Innocent VIII (1484-92)
          214.Alexander VI (1492-1503)
          215.Pius III (1503)
          216.Julius II (1503-13)
          217.Leo X (1513-21)
          218.Adrian VI (1522-23)
          219.Clement VII (1523-34)
          220.Paul III (1534-49)
          221.Julius III (1550-55)
          222.Marcellus II (1555)
          223.Paul IV (1555-59)
          224.Pius IV (1559-65)
          225.St. Pius V (1566-72)
          226.Gregory XIII (1572-85)
          227.Sixtus V (1585-90)
          228.Urban VII (1590)
          229.Gregory XIV (1590-91)
          230.Innocent IX (1591)
          231.Clement VIII (1592-1605)
          232.Leo XI (1605)
          233.Paul V (1605-21)
          234.Gregory XV (1621-23)
          235.Urban VIII (1623-44)
          236.Innocent X (1644-55)
          237.Alexander VII (1655-67)
          238.Clement IX (1667-69)
          239.Clement X (1670-76)
          240.Blessed Innocent XI (1676-89)
          241.Alexander VIII (1689-91)
          242.Innocent XII (1691-1700)
          243.Clement XI (1700-21)
          244.Innocent XIII (1721-24)
          245.Benedict XIII (1724-30)
          246.Clement XII (1730-40)
          247.Benedict XIV (1740-58)
          248.Clement XIII (1758-69)
          249.Clement XIV (1769-74)
          250.Pius VI (1775-99)
          251.Pius VII (1800-23)
          252.Leo XII (1823-29)
          253.Pius VIII (1829-30)
          254.Gregory XVI (1831-46)
          255.Blessed Pius IX (1846-78)
          256.Leo XIII (1878-1903)
          257.St. Pius X (1903-14)

          258.Benedict XV (1914-22) Biographies of Benedict XV and his successors will be added at a later date
          259.Pius XI (1922-39)
          260.Pius XII (1939-58)
          261.St. John XXIII (1958-63)
          262.Paul VI (1963-78)
          263.John Paul I (1978)
          264.St. John Paul II (1978-2005)
          265.Benedict XVI (2005-2013)
          266.Francis (2013—)

          1. Timothy P wrote,

            “Well I hate to cut and paste again but obviously it’s pretty easy to pull up a list of the popes.”

            How does that prove Roman Catholicism existed prior to the latter part of the 4th century?

            Thanks,

            Tim

          2. Now I had written

            “Now Tertullian was mentioned, he who left the Church to become a Montanist but before becoming a Protestant wrote “2.Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity. In his Prescription Against Heretics…””

            And Timothy K wrote

            “But you know very well, Timothy P, that Tertullian did not write what you have attributed to him. What you have provided as Tertullian’s writings is merely a cut and paste from Wikipedia on Tertullian. Tertullian would not have written, “Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity…”

            While Wikipedia is correct that Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity, what Tertullian also wrote (and he actually wrote this), was that the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching:”

            Timothy P
            Now I am always willing to apologize if anyone misunderstood what I was saying but given the placement on the quotation marks and the fact that it would be unlikely that Tertullian would actually say “2 Tertullian was a defender of the necessity of apostolicity . In his Prescription Against Heretics..” I guess I am assuming to much. I guess Timothy K I have a higher respect for the intelligence of those who read these post then you do but I apologize if anyone did not comprehend. And again talking about cutting and pasting did you ever find that list of scholars to support your position on the meaning of “Type, Figure and Symbol”. If you don’t have a list a single scholar and his arguments would be appreciated. If you don’t have a single scholar to fall back on then I think you should admit it and I won’t bring the subject up again.

            Now after providing the “roll of their bishops” for the Church of Rome, I am still trying to figure out Timothy K how you believe the other 2 quotes you provided from Tertullian negate the need for a roll call. It’s very similar to the situation where you where arguing that since Ignatius was responding to those who question the authority of Apostolic authority that Ignatius’s defense of that authority is in some way not valid. So let’s see your roll of bishops?

            “Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men—a man, moreover, who continued steadfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed.”

            Now what is odd is after accusing me of providing a quote from Tertullian that he did not actually say, Timothy K, you wrote

            ” what Tertullian also wrote (and he actually wrote this), was that the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching”

            Now Timothy K, you wrote “he actually wrote this) was that the apostolicity of a church IS DETERMINED by its apostolic teaching”. And then you provided the actual quote

            “Come now, you who would indulge a better curiosity, if you would apply it to the business of your salvation, run over the apostolic churches, in which the very thrones of the apostles are still pre-eminent in their places, in which their own authentic writings are read, uttering the voice and representing the face of each of them severally.” (Tertullian, Prescription Against Heretics, chapter 36

            Now where in that quote does Tertullian actually say as you claimed “the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching”? I have no doubt that Tertullian believed it but he didn’t say it as you claimed. And he does not appear to have said you don’t need to provide a roll call of your bishops did he?
            And of course heresies initially start up in the Church. Arius was a heretic don’t you agree. Or are you going to take Kevin’s position

            “So, Kevin, was Arius a member of the true church” I don’t know, I’m not God.”

            Kevin doesn’t have any problem calling the Catholic church the AntiChrist, but God forbid he call Arius a heretic. Kevin, do you understand what Arius was teaching?

          3. Timothy P wrote,

            “I guess I am assuming to much.”

            No, you are cutting and pasting too quickly. You found something on wikipedia that you believed supported your position, and you copied and pasted the whole paragraph without pausing to digest what the paragraph actually said. It appears that you do not have the time to read and consider what you are pasting, but you believe the readers here should just figure out what you meant. It just isn’t very effective as an apologetic. You continued,

            “And again talking about cutting and pasting did you ever find that list of scholars to support your position on the meaning of “Type, Figure and Symbol”. If you don’t have a list a single scholar and his arguments would be appreciated.”

            Timothy P, I have said nothing further on the topic because I was still awaiting your response to my last comment to you on the topic. I asked you several questions. Having received no answers from you, I saw no need to continue a “dialogue” in which one party does not interact. Feel free to pick up the conversation where I left it. You continued,

            “Now where in that quote does Tertullian actually say as you claimed “the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching”?

            Timothy P, if you would but pick up and read, you would see it. The whole context of chapter 36 and the succeeding chapters is that the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teachings. It is by reading the scriptures that the voice of the apostles is heard in the apostolic churches, he starts. Then he goes on, speaking of the apostolic churches, their common doctrine and its source, the Scriptures:

            “the law and the prophets she unites in one volume with the writings of evangelists and apostles, from which she drinks in her faith.” (Tertullian, Prescription against heretics, 36)

            But he goes on, mocking the heretics because what they have, they do not have from the Scriptures, but from their own mere choice:

            “they have nothing to do with the Scriptures. For as they are heretics, they cannot be true Christians, because it is not from Christ that they get that which they pursue of their own mere choice, and from the pursuit incur and admit the name of heretics. Thus, not being Christians, they have acquired no right to the Christian Scriptures.” (Tertullian, Prescription against heretics, 37)

            He continues from that point, having staked out the fact that the heretics have no right to the Scriptures, and addresses them directly saying that the Scriptures belong to people like him, trustees of the apostles, not to the heretics, and the difference between heretics and the apostles is shown by what they teach:

            “I am the heir of the apostles. Just as they carefully prepared their will and testament, and committed it to a trust, and adjured (the trustees to be faithful to their charge), even so do I hold it. As for you, they have, it is certain, always held you as disinherited, and rejected you as strangers— as enemies. But on what ground are heretics strangers and enemies to the apostles, if it be not from the difference of their teaching, which each individual of his own mere will has either advanced or received in opposition to the apostles?” (Tertullian, Prescription against heretics, 37)

            In the next chapter, Tertullian insists that his teaching is apostolic because it is consistent with the Scriptures:

            “Now, what is there in our Scriptures which is contrary to us? What of our own have we introduced, that we should have to take it away again, or else add to it, or alter it, in order to restore to its natural soundness anything which is contrary to it, and contained in the Scriptures?” (Tertullian, Prescription against heretics, 38)

            In all this, Tertullian has in mind the apostolic teaching as found in the Scriptures, and the difference in the heretics is that they teach things not found there. So yes, the apostolicity of a church is determined by its apostolic teaching (in Tertullian’s opinion), and apostolicity is something that Roman Catholicism lacks. As I have shown, Roman Catholics have been teaching things not found in the Scriptures since the latter part of the 4th century.

            Regarding your question on Arius, you asked,

            “Arius was a heretic don’t you agree.”

            Yes, he was. I suppose a comment from the Catholic Encyclopedia is succinct enough. While “Homoousion” is not a Scriptural term, it “summ[ed] up the doctrine of St. John, St. Paul, and Christ Himself, ‘I and the Father are one’.” (Catholic Encyclopedia, Arianism)

            Arius was a heretic because he taught things inconsistent with the Scriptures. Roman Catholicism is heretical on the same grounds.

            Anyway, Timothy P, as I mentioned in my last comment to you on Stone’s interpretation of “Figura” in Tertullian’s Scorpiace, I wanted to keep on one topic at a time, so I will appreciate a response to my comment to you on that topic. You can find it in part 5 of this series.

            Thank you,

            Tim

        2. Timothy K, you asked how would I go about finding the true church as you stated

          “Of course we could keep saying the same thing back and forth (and frankly you could do much better than your cut and paste apologetics), but what it comes down to is the eschatological and the historical argument. So, Timothy P, I asked you a little more than a week ago (you may have missed it, which I understand) how you would find the True Church if you could not appeal to the escahtological or the historical argument. Here is the comment so you won’t have to look it up:

          Timothy P, you said to Kevin, “Now notice Kevin there was no mention of an effort to find the Church that Christ established.”

          Without making a historical or eschatological argument, how would you go about finding that Church?

          Thanks,

          Tim

          So, Timothy P, how would you find the true church with out making a historical or eschatological argument?”

          Timothy P
          First I would say that trying to make an eschatological argument to finding the true church and I assume that you are referring to your references from the Bible from Daniel and the book of Revelations would seem highly suspect given the record of such arguments over the last 2000 years. How many times has a date been set for the end of the World based on eschatological arguments? Doesn’t seem like a very good track record to me. It’s a little like looking at a painting that is realistic vs an extremely abstract painting. The book of Revelation is like an abstract painting, as in your case you are going to see what you want to see. In fact I find it interesting that you see the Catholic Church as the antichrist in that book but yet you can’t see the real presence in Irenaeus’s quotes. And of course Kevin is not going to share those quotes because he simply can’t handle the truth.

          So I would find the historical argument much more persuasive with a large dose of common sense. And I think the Church Fathers obviously held to the same view. It would have been ridiculous for Irenaeus or Tertullian to point to scripture alone to find the true church because one had to rely on those churches that were founded by the apostles to find the valid scriptures. And that is why one sees this recurring theme.
          Tertullian
          “Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men—a man, moreover, who continued steadfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed.”

          Irenaeus

          ” It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. For if the apostles had known hidden mysteries, which they were in the habit of imparting to “the perfect” apart and privily from the rest, they would have delivered them especially to those to whom they were also committing the Churches themselves. For they were desirous that these men should be very perfect and blameless in all things, whom also they were leaving behind as their successors, delivering up their own place of government to these men; which men, if they discharged their functions honestly, would be a great boon [to the Church], but if they should fall away, the direst calamity.

          2. Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its preeminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.

          3. The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to Timothy. To him succeeded Anacletus; and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric. This man, as he had seen the blessed apostles, and had been conversant with them, might be said to have the preaching of the apostles still echoing [in his ears], and their traditions before his eyes. Nor was he alone [in this], for there were many still remaining who had received instructions from the apostles. In the time of this Clement, no small dissension having occurred among the brethren at Corinth, the Church in Rome dispatched a most powerful letter to the Corinthians, exhorting them to peace, renewing their faith, and declaring the tradition which it had lately received from the apostles, proclaiming the one God, omnipotent, the Maker of heaven and earth, the Creator of man, who brought on the deluge, and called Abraham, who led the people from the land of Egypt, spoke with Moses, set forth the law, sent the prophets, and who has prepared fire for the devil and his angels. From this document, whosoever chooses to do so, may learn that He, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, was preached by the Churches, and may also understand the tradition of the Church, since this Epistle is of older date than these men who are now propagating falsehood, and who conjure into existence another god beyond the Creator and the Maker of all existing things. To this Clement there succeeded Evaristus. Alexander followed Evaristus; then, sixth from the apostles, Sixtus was appointed; after him, Telephorus, who was gloriously martyred; then Hyginus; after him, Pius; then after him, Anicetus. Soter having succeeded Anicetus, Eleutherius does now, in the twelfth place from the apostles, hold the inheritance of the episcopate. In this order, and by this succession, the ecclesiastical tradition from the apostles, and the preaching of the truth, have come down to us. And this is most abundant proof that there is one and the same vivifying faith, which has been preserved in the Church from the apostles until now, and handed down in truth.”

          St Augustine
          “5. For in the Catholic Church, not to speak of the purest wisdom, to the knowledge of which a few spiritual men attain in this life, so as to know it, in the scantiest measure, indeed, because they are but men, still without any uncertainty (since the rest of the multitude derive their entire security not from acuteness of intellect, but from simplicity of faith,)— not to speak of this wisdom, which you do not believe to be in the Catholic Church, there are many other things which most justly keep me in her bosom. The consent of peoples and nations keeps me in the Church; so does her authority, inaugurated by miracles, nourished by hope, enlarged by love, established by age. The succession of priests keeps me, beginning from the very seat of the Apostle Peter, to whom the Lord, after His resurrection, gave it in charge to feed His sheep, down to the present episcopate. And so, lastly, does the name itself of Catholic, which, not without reason, amid so many heresies, the Church has thus retained; so that, though all heretics wish to be called Catholics, yet when a stranger asks where the Catholic Church meets, no heretic will venture to point to his own chapel or house. Such then in number and importance are the precious ties belonging to the Christian name which keep a believer in the Catholic Church, as it is right they should, though from the slowness of our understanding, or the small attainment of our life, the truth may not yet fully disclose itself. But with you, where there is none of these things to attract or keep me, the promise of truth is the only thing that comes into play. Now if the truth is so clearly proved as to leave no possibility of doubt, it must be set before all the things that keep me in the Catholic Church; but if there is only a promise without any fulfillment, no one shall move me from the faith which binds my mind with ties so many and so strong to the Christian religion.”

          Now I know Timothy K you have bee critical of my cutting and pasting but you don’t seem to have any problem with Walt’s cutting and pasting. Half the time I have no idea why Walt is pasting some of the material he shares but I try not to complain about it.

          1. Tim P wrote:

            “So I would find the historical argument much more persuasive with a large dose of common sense. And I think the Church Fathers obviously held to the same view.”

            Is not this fascinating, really? Perfect example that a Roman Catholic will always reject Scripture at the primary method to identify the true church, and rather look to man’s uninspired testimony of error in history.

          2. Thank you, Timothy P, for your response. I would like to clarify something. You said,

            “First I would say that trying to make an eschatological argument to finding the true church and I assume that you are referring to your references from the Bible from Daniel and the book of Revelations would seem highly suspect given the record of such arguments over the last 2000 years.”

            No, actually, I am not referring to my references from the Bible, but the references and arguments from your own popes and cardinals and apologists to biblical prophecy. For example, when Cardinal Newman wrote of the development of doctrine, he referred both to the historical argument and the eschatological, as in this example when he opined that the Roman Catholic Church fulfills (I presume) Daniel’s prophecy of the Stone in Daniel chapter 2, and can be considered evidence in support of “historical Christianity,” by which he meant Roman Catholicism:

            “…considering that prophecy had already determined that it was to be a power visible in the world and sovereign over it, characters which are accurately fulfilled in that historical Christianity to which we commonly give the name.” (Newman, Development of Doctrine, Introduction)

            Taylor Marshall, by way of another example, used a similar argument:

            “As we see in Daniel 2, “[Rome’s] sovereignty shall be left to another people” and it would happen through the introduction of a stone or rock – a Petros or Peter!” (Taylor Marshall, The Roman Church as prophesied in the Old Testament)

            As Pope John Paul II once said, “The perspective in which Peter’s responsibility–like the Church’s whole mission-must be considered is therefore both historical and eschatological.” (John Paul II, Peter Strengthens His Brothers in Faith)

            Clearly these men see (and saw) that an element of Roman Catholicism’s authority on earth is supported by an explicitly eschatological argument. That is what I mean by the eschatological argument. So if you could try to discover the true church apart from the historical and eschatological arguments, how would you do it?

            You also wrote,

            “How many times has a date been set for the end of the World based on eschatological arguments?”

            Indeed. Do I take this to mean that you agree that Newman’s, Marshall’s and the pope’s eschatological arguments for the primacy of Rome may be potentially flawed?

            Thank you,

            Tim

      2. ” So Kevin, this remnant whose leaders claimed to be priests , are they part of your ancestors.” Very likely yes. The fact that they were named priests is a non starter. Your missing the point. Boniface was writing to pope Zachary to tell him they were operating INDEPENDENTLY from Rome. Your first question should be Why? Why are the meeting in separate assemblies and strange places? Why were this competing church more numerous than the Catholics ? If this Papal primate is identifying them as ” more numerous that the Catholics” then they weren’t Catholics , we’re they? Why were they being defended by the populist against the Roman bishops? Let’s just call them what they are,PROTESTERS, the true church in the wilderness , standing against Rome and it’s bishops. Why? Could it be the Roman bishops had strayed from orthodoxy? Yes. They ” exercise their erroneous ministry not in the Catholic church” Do not lose sight of a very important point, and that is Hunter said Vigilantius and Jovinianus were closer to orthodox position that Ambrose and Jerome. What I believe we see here , is the true church, which scripture says was nourished in the wilderness by its Lord, those who stood hard and fast to the commandments of God, faithful to the apostolic faith passed down. And the adversarial position of Rome to them is telling. As the power of the Roman Catholic bishop rose, the corruption set in. Clearly you see this move from the orthodox doctrines to those that troubled many bishops and was responsible for the true church moving to the wilderness, as the Roman Catholicism becomes apostate. It’s interesting to me that Jesus says ” if someone comes to YOU and says I am the Christ , don’t believe him.” Notice he doesn’t say weigh it. He says don’t believe him. I think Jesus is telling us there will be and obvious Jesus who comes to you ( Rome), but don’t believe him.

        1. Kevin, you just helped me make my point. After I wrote

          ” So Kevin, this remnant whose leaders claimed to be priests , are they part of your ancestors.”

          Kevin responded
          “Very likely yes. The fact that they were named priests is a non starter.”

          So the fact that they have priests is a non starter? Kevin then writes

          “Let’s just call them what they are,PROTESTERS, the true church in the wilderness , standing against Rome and it’s bishops. Why? Could it be the Roman bishops had strayed from orthodoxy? Yes. They ” exercise their erroneous ministry not in the Catholic church” Do not lose sight of a very important point, and that is Hunter said Vigilantius and Jovinianus were closer to orthodox position that Ambrose and Jerome. What I believe we see here , is the true church, which scripture says was nourished in the wilderness by its Lord, those who stood hard and fast to the commandments of God, faithful to the apostolic faith passed down.”

          So Kevin we are in agreement that they are Protestors, but I guess based on your logic it doesn’t matter what they believe as long as they are Protestors they are the true church. Then Kevin you seem to believe that numbers count. You write

          ” If this Papal primate is identifying them as ” more numerous that the Catholics” then they weren’t Catholics , we’re they”

          Agreed Kevin they were not Catholic, but haven’t you heard about this guy Athanasius against the World. So Kevin if the only criteria to belong to your true Church is to be a Protestor, I again have to assume you accept Arius as a member of the true church and it’s OK to have priest in the true Church. Again I quote you

          “The fact that they were named priests is a non starter. Your missing the point”

          No Kevin I think you have missed my point. I have never denied that there have been heretical groups some of which may have gone into hiding. But you seem to accept anyone who protests against the Catholic Church to be a member of the “True Church” no matter what they believe.

          Now Kevin, you wrote

          “Do not lose sight of a very important point, and that is Hunter said Vigilantius and Jovinianus were closer to orthodox position that Ambrose and Jerome.”

          So who was closer to the orthodox view? I know Timothy K hates cutting and pasting but what does Wikipedia tell us about Tertullian

          “Women should put aside their gold and precious stones as ornaments,[45] and virgins should conform to the law of St. Paul for women and keep themselves strictly veiled (De virginibus velandis). He praised the unmarried state as the highest (De monogamia, xvii; Ad uxorem, i.3) and called upon Christians not to allow themselves to be excelled in the virtue of celibacy by Vestal Virgins and Egyptian priests. He even labeled second marriage a species of adultery (De exhortationis castitatis, ix), but this directly contradicted the Epistles of the Apostle Paul. Tertullian’s resolve to never marry again and that no one else should remarry eventually led to his break with Rome because the orthodox church refused to follow him in this resolve. He, instead, favored the Montanist sect where they also condemned second marriage.[46] One reason for Tertullian’s disdain for marriage was his belief about the transformation that awaited a married couple. He believed that marital relations coarsened the body and the soul and would dull their spiritual senses and avert the Holy Spirit since husband and wife became one flesh once married.[29]

          Tertullian is sometimes criticized for being misogynistic, on the basis of the contents of his De Cultu Feminarum, section I.I, part 2 (trans. C.W. Marx):[citation needed] “Do you not know that you are Eve? The judgment of God upon this sex lives on in this age; therefore, necessarily the guilt should live on also. You are the gateway of the devil; you are the one who unseals the curse of that tree, and you are the first one to turn your back on the divine law; you are the one who persuaded him whom the devil was not capable of corrupting; you easily destroyed the image of God, Adam. Because of what you deserve, that is, death, even the Son of God had to die.””

          “He praised the unmarried state as the highest”. You have Saint Paul, Tertullian and Jerome and Ambrose all making the same point and yet you say

          “Vigilantius and Jovinianus were closer to orthodox position”

          By the way, what do you think about Tertullian calling women the “gateway of the devil”? Tertullian left the Church, joined the Montanist movement and then disagreed with them and formed his own Church. I really think he should be recognized as the Father of Protestantism.

          So Kevin , was Arius a member of the True Church?

          1. One man’s heretical group is another man’s true church faithful to the doctrine’s of scripture. That’s the point that we are debating right. According to whom. Your true church is our apostasy. We use the Bible to make this judgment. You believe your church’s word. I’ll go with the Spirit speaking in scriptures and the evidence provided here about history and eschatology and the apostasy from true religion. And guess what, according to scripture, history, and eschatological considerations, you are on the wrong team. ” So, Kevin, was Arius a member of the true church” I don’t know, I’m not God.

  2. “Lyons became the chief centre of Christian preaching and association in Gaul. As early as the first half of the second century there existed there a Christian congregation, regularly organized as a church, and already sufficiently important to be in intimate and frequent communication with the Christian churches of the East and West. There is a tradition, generally admitted, that St. Pothinus, the first bishop of Lyons, was sent thither from the East by the bishop of Smyrna, St. Polycarp, himself a disciple of St. John. One thing is certain, that the Christian Church of Lyons produced Gaul’s first martyrs, among whom was the bishop, St. Pothinus.”

    ” It seems desirable to submit for perusal that document, which has been preserved almost entire in the Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius, bishop of Caesarea in the third century, and which will exhibit, better than any modern representations, the state of facts and of souls in the midst of the imperial persecutions, and the mighty faith, devotion, and courage with which the early Christians faced the most cruel trials:

    “The servants of Christ, dwelling at Vienne and Lyons in Gaul, to the brethren settled in Asia and Phrygia, who have the same faith and hope of redemption that we have, peace, grace, and glory from God the Father and Jesus Christ our Lord!”

    “Originally from Asia Minor, probably from Smyrna, he had migrated to Gaul, at what particular date is not known, and had settled as a simple priest in the diocese of Lyons, where it was not long before he exercised vast influence, as well on the spot as also during certain missions intrusted to him, and among them one, they say, to the pope, St. Eleutherius, at Rome.

    While bishop of Lyons, from A.D. 177 to 202, he employed the five-and-twenty years in propagating the Christian faith in Gaul, and in defending, by his writings, the Christian doctrines against the discord to which they had already been subjected in the East, and which was beginning to penetrate the West.”

    http://history-world.org/persecution_of_the_christians_in.htm

  3. Now we are getting somewhere:

    “Both Harnack and Loofs agree in seeking for the origin of the Textus Receptus in Southern Gaul.”

    Journal of Theological Studies, Volume 3

    “Other creeds virtually identical with the textus receptus began to appear in southern Gaul from the fifth century. As a result, he argues that the present text of the Apostles Creed (the textus receptus) should be regarded as a Gallican and not a Roman redaction.”

    The Lutheran Confessions: History and Theology of the Book of Concord, edited by Charles P. Arand, James Arne

  4. “It is precisely this consideration which constrains us to pay supreme attention to the combined testimony of the Uncials and of the whole body of the Cursive Copies. They are (a) dotted over at least 1000 years: (b) they evidently belong to so many divers countries,–Greece, Constantinople, Asia Minor, Palestine, Syria, Alexandria, and other parts of Africa, not to say Sicily, Southern Italy, Gaul, England, and Ireland: (c) they exhibit so many strange characteristics and peculiar sympathies: (d) they so clearly represent countless families of MSS., being in no single instance absolutely identical in their text, and certainly not being copies of any other Codex in existence,–that their unanimous decision I hold to be an absolutely irrefragable evidence of the Truth.” [Dean Burgon, The Traditional Text, p. 50-51]

    “The “Textus Receptus” can, with a satisfactory degree of certainty, be traced back, except in certain minute details, to the beginning of the sixth, or to the end of the fifth century. But there is a strong probability that this form of the symbol was not previously in official use in any church, whether as a part of the Interrogationes de fide or the Traditio and Redditio Symboli; nay, there is no discoverable sign of the existence of this particular form before the middle of the fifth century.”

    https://www.ccel.org/ccel/harnack/creed.ii.ii.html

    “An examination of the Received Text, on the other hand, yields quite a different story. Unlike the small number of manuscripts supporting the Alexandrian Text, the Received Text is derived from the Byzantine text-type which is represented in 80 to 90 percent of all Greek manuscripts. 34 That amounts to approximately 4,000 witnesses! Dotted over hundreds of years, these witnesses come from many different places—Greece, Constantinople, Asia Minor, Palestine, Syria, Alexandria, other parts of Africa, not to mention Sicily, southern Italy, Gaul, England, and Ireland. 35 This is quite a contrast to the limited locality and time-range of the Alexandrian Text.

    Although none of the Greek manuscripts of the Byzantine text-type date before A.D. 400, most scholars agree that in order for this text-type to be so widespread and predominant among the Greek manuscripts, it had to have a much earlier existence. 36 Indeed, distinctive Byzantine readings are found in all of the oldest versions, 37 in the papyri, 38 and in the Scriptural quotations of the early church fathers. 39 In numerous places the Byzantine text-type can be shown to be as early or earlier than any text-type. 40 It was the authoritative Scriptures of the Syrian church, the Waldensian church of northern Italy, and the Greek Orthodox Church. Wilkinson’s study also suggests the Byzantine text-type was the Scriptures of such early churches as the Celtic church in Scotland and Ireland, and the Gallic church in southern France. 41”

    http://www.amazingfacts.org/media-library/book/e/65/t/the-faithful-witness

    1. Kevin,

      We don’t know how interconnected they were, except by inference. There is no direct evidence of collaboration and communication between them, as far as I know.

      Thanks,

      Tim

  5. Tim K quoted Tim P with the question I want to know too.

    “Timothy P wrote,

    “Well I hate to cut and paste again but obviously it’s pretty easy to pull up a list of the popes.”

    How does that prove Roman Catholicism existed prior to the latter part of the 4th century?

    Thanks,

    Tim”

    The entire point of this blog has been to show from Scripture and history that Antichrist is the Papacy and Roman Catholic religion, and the great falling away in apostasy started around the fourth century. This entire premise is clear and the argument is more detailed each month, and week by week in the comment section.

    Nobody is arguing that the Bishops (e.g., also called Priests by some with Romish leanings) were not operating largely, with some exceptions, within the Catholic Universal Christian Church from the 1st to 4th century. As a former Roman Catholic turned Protestant, I was always told that my cherished family Roman Catholic religion was the only, one, true, apostolic Christian Church with a perfect biblical foundation from Peter, and a perfect line of oral sacred tradition from the Apostles. This what you learn, and this is what exactly the Roman Catholics argue on this blog week after week.

    Unfortunately, there is no truth in these claims. I have no idea who these Roman Catholic Popes are from Peter to the 4th Century in the list Timothy P provided, because there was not such thing as a Roman Catholic Church prior to the 4th Century. It did not exist even by Rome’s own scholars and apologists. If it did not exist prior to the 4th century, then what on earth do these silly fools come here arguing day after day that their religion is the one true Christian religion originating from Pope Peter? It is totally foolishness.

    1. Walt wrote:

      “Unfortunately, there is no truth in these claims. I have no idea who these Roman Catholic Popes are from Peter to the 4th Century in the list Timothy P provided, because there was not such thing as a Roman Catholic Church prior to the 4th Century. It did not exist even by Rome’s own scholars and apologists. If it did not exist prior to the 4th century, then what on earth do these silly fools come here arguing day after day that their religion is the one true Christian religion originating from Pope Peter? It is totally foolishness.”

      Walt, maybe St. Augustine can help you from his writing “Against the Title of the Epistle of Manichaeus.

      Chapter 4.— Proofs of the Catholic Faith

      “5. For in the Catholic Church, not to speak of the purest wisdom, to the knowledge of which a few spiritual men attain in this life, so as to know it, in the scantiest measure, indeed, because they are but men, still without any uncertainty (since the rest of the multitude derive their entire security not from acuteness of intellect, but from simplicity of faith,)— not to speak of this wisdom, which you do not believe to be in the Catholic Church, there are many other things which most justly keep me in her bosom. The consent of peoples and nations keeps me in the Church; so does her authority, inaugurated by miracles, nourished by hope, enlarged by love, established by age. The succession of priests keeps me, beginning from the very seat of the Apostle Peter, to whom the Lord, after His resurrection, gave it in charge to feed His sheep, down to the present episcopate. And so, lastly, does the name itself of Catholic, which, not without reason, amid so many heresies, the Church has thus retained; so that, though all heretics wish to be called Catholics, yet when a stranger asks where the Catholic Church meets, no heretic will venture to point to his own chapel or house. Such then in number and importance are the precious ties belonging to the Christian name which keep a believer in the Catholic Church, as it is right they should, though from the slowness of our understanding, or the small attainment of our life, the truth may not yet fully disclose itself. But with you, where there is none of these things to attract or keep me, the promise of truth is the only thing that comes into play. Now if the truth is so clearly proved as to leave no possibility of doubt, it must be set before all the things that keep me in the Catholic Church; but if there is only a promise without any fulfillment, no one shall move me from the faith which binds my mind with ties so many and so strong to the Christian religion.”

      Walt you are familiar that the title Roman Catholic came about after the English church separated and became known as the Anglo-Catholic Church. And which Church claims “the very seat of the Apostle Peter” as Augustine claims for the Catholic church he belonged too.
      Was this claim a novel 4th Century innovation? Let’s go back to Tertullian

      “Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men—a man, moreover, who continued steadfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed.”

      Now Walt, we know “the original records” of your Church.

  6. Timothy K wrote to Timothy P:

    “Yes, Roman Catholicism fell away from us, the true church, and came “from our plant, although not of our kind,” and because they were carried away with the flood of error from the Serpent’s mouth in the latter part of the 4th century, “they have only wild leaves to show.” Thus while we follow Christ, you follow after the kissing and kneeling to the cross and relics, the gnostic myth of the in partu virginity of Mary, the Primacy of Rome and its bishop, the immaculacy of Mary, her bodily assumption, the worship of the bread, prayers for the dead, prayers to the dead, the sacrifice of the mass, etc…, etc…, etc…”

    This is the obvious point of this blog, and for some reason it is absolutely impossible for any Roman Catholic to see this exact point.

    I have said many, many times that brain washing is the root problem inside the Roman Catholic religion. It is absolutely a cult, the world’s largest Satanic cult as many have stated in history, and it is Antichrist. This is such a serious charge against this religion, but we know from Scripture and history it is incredibly proven with facts, evidence and truth.

    Yet, day after day here comes Roman Catholics who cannot see any (and I mean not one) error in their religion they will publicly admit. Timothy P comes here day after day defending his sources from Wikipedia, and other foolishness, then simply argues essentially that Rome is the best, the greatest, the most perfect, and all Protestants original from John Calvin or John Knox. It is just a standard anti-Protestant, anti-Christian, bigoted, hate filled typical hardened Roman Catholic position against anyone who challenges their claims.

    Why do we have history of Protestant Christians filled with blood caused by the Roman Catholic killing machine? Some say 50 million Christians were murdered by these “Popes” and whatever the number, even 10 million or 1 million or 100,000 is total insanity. To murder those who do not believe in Roman Catholicism, and who Protested against this evil, is the perfect witness of the Antichrist religion.

    As a former Roman Catholic, I am so sad to even have been part of this religion knowing what I know now. I was never taught anything about what Roman Catholics did to Protestants, I was only flooded with how evil and unsaved those outside the Roman Catholic church have been in history from Peter. I was absolutely brain washed like these other Roman Catholics coming here day after day, week after week defending her evil.

    The only difference was I never knew what I know today. It is truly incredible information coming into light from darkness and hidden from the masses. This website and blog is documenting what happened in the 4th century, and turned my Christian church into Antichrist religion. For those who are brainwashed, it is time to wake up and come out of her my people and save your souls!

    1. Walt writes

      “Timothy P comes here day after day defending his sources from Wikipedia, and other foolishness, then simply argues essentially that Rome is the best, the greatest, the most perfect, and all Protestants original from John Calvin or John Knox. It is just a standard anti-Protestant, anti-Christian, bigoted, hate filled typical hardened Roman Catholic position against anyone who challenges their claims.”

      Now Walt where did I say that “all Protestants original [originate] from John Calvin or John Knox.” All Protestants Walt? Please do not misrepresent what I have written.

      Walt also wrote

      “As a former Roman Catholic, I am so sad to even have been part of this religion knowing what I know now. I was never taught anything about what Roman Catholics did to Protestants, I was only flooded with how evil and unsaved those outside the Roman Catholic church have been in history from Peter. I was absolutely brain washed like these other Roman Catholics coming here day after day, week after week defending her evil.

      Now Walt, I went to Catholic grade school, high school and college and I was never taught that those outside the Catholic church were “evil and unsaved” so obviously we had a totally different experience. But if you are going to throw stones I would suggest you stop referring to the Catholic church as the AntiChrist . I am still shocked at the bedtime story Timothy K tells his children.

  7. Timothy P quoted:

    “1.St. Peter (32-67)
    2.St. Linus (67-76)
    3.St. Anacletus (Cletus) (76-88)
    4.St. Clement I (88-97)
    5.St. Evaristus (97-105)
    6.St. Alexander I (105-115)…..”

    I’ve already proven by countless Greek texts and commentaries on Scripture that Peter was not the first Pope.

    Without Peter, your chain is broken, and the Papal form of Church Government is not biblical.

    The only form of biblical government is Presbyterianism as stated clearly in our Terms of Communion.

    “That Presbyterial Church Government and manner of worship are alone of divine right and unalterable; and that the most perfect model of these as yet attained, is exhibited in the Form of Government and Directory for Worship, adopted by the Church of Scotland in the Second Reformation.”

    Here is the history of our true Christian religion!!!

    “Our single primary standard, from which all our doctrines and beliefs are derived, is the Word of God, i.e., the Holy Scripture of the Old and New Testaments. Similarly, our faithful forefathers derived their doctrines also from Scripture and have, at various times in history, preserved those doctrines for us in writing. In keeping with the Scripture’s command, we “hold fast” to the doctrines contained in the documents listed below, insofar as they are agreeable to Scripture. These documents, because their authority is derived from Scripture, are known as our secondary standards or subordinate standards.

    Note: Some of the standards below are freely available online. More will become available as we are able to add them.

    The Universal Formularies
    – The Apostle’s Creed (200?-500?)
    – The Nicene Creed (381)
    – The Athanasian Creed (415?-550?)

    The Scottish Formularies
    – The Book of Common Order (1562)
    – The Scottish Confession of Faith (1560)
    – The First and Second Books of Discipline (1560) (Off-site)
    – The Form of Examination Before the Communion (~1567)
    – The Psalms of David in Metre (1650) (Off-site)
    – The Book of the Universal Kirk (1560-1616)
    – The Acts of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland (1638-1649 incl.)
    – The True History of the Church of Scotland (1678)

    The Westminster Formularies
    – The Westminster Confession of Faith (1646) (Off-site)
    – The Larger Catechism (1648) (Off-site)
    – The Shorter Catechism (1648) (Off-site)
    – The Form of Presbyterial Church Government (1645) (Off-site)
    – The Directory for the Public Worship of God (1645) (Off-site)
    – The Directory for Family Worship (1647) (Off-site)

    The Covenants
    – The National Covenant (1581) (Spanish Translation)
    – The Solemn League and Covenant (1643, approved by the Westminster Assembly) (in Spanish) (in French) (in Dutch)

    The Faithful Covenant Renewals and Renovations
    – Renewal of the National Covenant, March 30, 1596, at the Assembly held at the Little Church of Edinburgh, and the Synod of Fife, May 12, 1596, and also in the Presbytery of St. Andrews in 1596
    – Act ordaining by Ecclesiastical authority, the Subscription of the Confession of Faith and Covenant, with the Assemblies declaration, August 30, 1639, Session 23
    – The Act of the Commission of the General Assembly for renewing the Solemn League and Covenant, October 6, 1648, including a Solemn Acknowledgement of the Public Sins and Breaches of the Covenant
    – The Auchensaugh Renovation of the National Covenant and the Solemn League and Covenant by the Reformed Presbytery (Auchensaugh, Scotland, 1712)
    – The Renovation of These Public Federal Deeds Ordained at Philadelphia, October 8, 1880, by the Reformed Presbytery, With Accommodation of the Original Covenants, in Both Transactions, to their Time and Positions Respectively

    The Reformed Presbyterian (Scotland and America) Formularies
    – The Act, Declaration, and Testimony, by the Reformed Presbytery (Scotland, 1761), with supplements added by the Reformed Presbytery in America in 1876)

    Supplements by the Reformed Presbytery of Scotland
    – Supplement to Part Second
    – Addenda

    Supplements by the Reformed Presbytery of the United States
    – Supplement to Part III
    – Supplement to Part IV

    – A Short Directory for Religious Societies (Scotland and America) (1881)

    The Constitutions, Terms of Communion, and Judicial Minutes of the Reformed Presbytery in Scotland and America
    – The Deed of Constitution of the Reformed Presbytery in America (1840)
    – Ecclesiastical Terms of Communion
    – Judicial Minutes of the Reformed Presbytery in Scotland (1743-1822)
    – Judicial Minutes of the Reformed Presbytery in America (1774 -1778, 1798 -1805, 1840 -1845, 1854 -1887)
    – Minutes of the Reformed Presbytery in Ireland (1763-1779, 1782-1839)
    – Reformation Principles Exhibited (1806)

    Other Formally Approved Subordinate Confessions and Catechisms
    – John Calvin’s Genevan Catechism (1541) (Off-site)
    – The Second Helvetic Confession of Faith (with qualifications) (1561) (Off-site)

    1. Walt wrote

      “Without Peter, your chain is broken, and the Papal form of Church Government is not biblical.

      The only form of biblical government is Presbyterianism as stated clearly in our Terms of Communion.

      “That Presbyterial Church Government and manner of worship are alone of divine right and unalterable; and that the most perfect model of these as yet attained, is exhibited in the Form of Government and Directory for Worship, adopted by the Church of Scotland in the Second Reformation.””

      So Walt, what “Biblical proof do I have for a Papal form of Government with Peter” as it’s head? Let me give you chapter and verse with no comment and see if you can do the same on your claim above.
      Matthew 16

      “13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?

      14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.

      15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?

      16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.

      17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

      18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

      19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

      Now Walt, give me the chapter and verse that supports your statement

      “That Presbyterial Church Government and manner of worship are alone of divine right and unalterable; and that the most perfect model of these as yet attained, is exhibited in the Form of Government and Directory for Worship, adopted by the Church of Scotland in the Second Reformation.”

      Chapter and verse Walt. And how many times have I asked you how many times Peter’s primacy shows up in the last chapter of John’s Gospel? Did you go back and read that chapter? Should we go over that chapter verse by verse?

      1. Timothy P wrote:

        “So Walt, what “Biblical proof do I have for a Papal form of Government with Peter” as it’s head? Let me give you chapter and verse with no comment and see if you can do the same on your claim above.
        Matthew 16.”

        I’ve already been down this teaching process with you Tim. Matthew 16 says nothing anywhere that Peter was the first Pope. The word Pope is not anywhere in the bible a universal bishop is nowhere in the bible. That looks now to me to be an innovation of Augustine with your previous quote referencing Peter and a line of priests. Who is this line of priests is anyone guess Augustine was claiming.

        We know in history now after my research last week that the first Protestants protested against Jerome and I read also against Augustine. Clearly Augustine was very confused on church government and in the 3rd and 4th century had to be rebuked for his errors. Fortunately those who rebuked him were Early Protestants.

        See below to learn facts and truth.

        “From the galaxy of illustrious names, on which we have been gazing, we turn to that small cluster of ****obscure men who strove to call back the Church to Apostolic simplicity and truth.*** The need of reform had become more and more pressing, but the great leaders and teachers of the age had failed to perform their duty; nevertheless the truth was not left wholly without witnesses. The name of Aerius was introduced in our former work^ by anticipation rather than in the exact order of time. ***He flourished about the middle of the fourth century, and may be regarded as the first Protestant after the Council of Nicaea.*** His teaching on many points anticipated in a remarkable degree that of the most enlightened Protestants of the Reformation.”

        1. Walt writes

          We know in history now after my research last week that the first Protestants protested against Jerome and I read also against Augustine. Clearly Augustine was very confused on church government and in the 3rd and 4th century had to be rebuked for his errors. Fortunately those who rebuked him were Early Protestants.”

          Really Walt? “Clearly Augustine was very confused on church government and in the 3rd and 4th century had to be rebuked for his errors.”. Well we already have seen Tertullian’s quote requesting Walt you show your “original records” of your Church. I assume you believe that Irenaeus who was taught by Polycarp who was taught by the apostle John was also confused for Irenaeus wrote the following

          ” It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. For if the apostles had known hidden mysteries, which they were in the habit of imparting to “the perfect” apart and privily from the rest, they would have delivered them especially to those to whom they were also committing the Churches themselves. For they were desirous that these men should be very perfect and blameless in all things, whom also they were leaving behind as their successors, delivering up their own place of government to these men; which men, if they discharged their functions honestly, would be a great boon [to the Church], but if they should fall away, the direst calamity.

          2. Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its preeminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.

          3. The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to Timothy. To him succeeded Anacletus; and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric. This man, as he had seen the blessed apostles, and had been conversant with them, might be said to have the preaching of the apostles still echoing [in his ears], and their traditions before his eyes. Nor was he alone [in this], for there were many still remaining who had received instructions from the apostles. In the time of this Clement, no small dissension having occurred among the brethren at Corinth, the Church in Rome dispatched a most powerful letter to the Corinthians, exhorting them to peace, renewing their faith, and declaring the tradition which it had lately received from the apostles, proclaiming the one God, omnipotent, the Maker of heaven and earth, the Creator of man, who brought on the deluge, and called Abraham, who led the people from the land of Egypt, spoke with Moses, set forth the law, sent the prophets, and who has prepared fire for the devil and his angels. From this document, whosoever chooses to do so, may learn that He, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, was preached by the Churches, and may also understand the tradition of the Church, since this Epistle is of older date than these men who are now propagating falsehood, and who conjure into existence another god beyond the Creator and the Maker of all existing things. To this Clement there succeeded Evaristus. Alexander followed Evaristus; then, sixth from the apostles, Sixtus was appointed; after him, Telephorus, who was gloriously martyred; then Hyginus; after him, Pius; then after him, Anicetus. Soter having succeeded Anicetus, Eleutherius does now, in the twelfth place from the apostles, hold the inheritance of the episcopate. In this order, and by this succession, the ecclesiastical tradition from the apostles, and the preaching of the truth, have come down to us. And this is most abundant proof that there is one and the same vivifying faith, which has been preserved in the Church from the apostles until now, and handed down in truth.

          4. But Polycarp also was not only instructed by apostles, and conversed with many who had seen Christ, but was also, by apostles in Asia, appointed bishop of the Church in Smyrna, whom I also saw in my early youth, for he tarried [on earth] a very long time, and, when a very old man, gloriously and most nobly suffering martyrdom, departed this life, having always taught the things which he had learned from the apostles, and which the Church has handed down, and which alone are true. To these things all the Asiatic Churches testify, as do also those men who have succeeded Polycarp down to the present time,— a man who was of much greater weight, and a more steadfast witness of truth, than Valentinus, and Marcion, and the rest of the heretics. He it was who, coming to Rome in the time of Anicetus caused many to turn away from the aforesaid heretics to the Church of God, proclaiming that he had received this one and sole truth from the apostles—that, namely, which is handed down by the Church. There are also those who heard from him that John, the disciple of the Lord, going to bathe at Ephesus, and perceiving Cerinthus within, rushed out of the bath-house without bathing, exclaiming, “Let us fly, lest even the bath-house fall down, because Cerinthus, the enemy of the truth, is within.” And Polycarp himself replied to Marcion, who met him on one occasion, and said, “Do you know me?” “I do know you, the first-born of Satan.” Such was the horror which the apostles and their disciples had against holding even verbal communication with any corrupters of the truth; as Paul also says, “A man that is an heretic, after the first and second admonition, reject; knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sins, being condemned of himself.” Titus 3:10 There is also a very powerful Epistle of Polycarp written to the Philippians, from which those who choose to do so, and are anxious about their salvation, can learn the character of his faith, and the preaching of the truth. Then, again, the Church in Ephesus, founded by Paul, and having John remaining among them permanently until the times of Trajan, is a true witness of the tradition of the apostles.”

          Walt, Augustine was not coming up with some novel belief in the 4th century with his comments as clearly supported by Tertullian and Irenaeus’s comments. Walt, as a second century person wanting to know the truth about Christ and his teachings would you go get your bible and learn the apostolic teachings or would you go and find the answers in the churches established by the apostles?
          I loved when I was debating Mike on the One Fold website and Mike called Irenaeus a Roman Catholic and yet you guys state the Roman Catholic church started in the 4th Century. By the way, can we do a poll and independently can you, Kevin , Timothy K and the rest of our Protestant apologist tell us who was the first pope?

          1. Tim P did you read this?

            “There is also a very powerful Epistle of Polycarp written to the Philippians, from which those who choose to do so, and are anxious about their salvation, can learn the character of his faith, and the preaching of the truth. Then, again, the Church in Ephesus, founded by Paul, and having John remaining among them permanently until the times of Trajan, is a true witness of the tradition of the apostles.”

            I thought Peter was the founder of the church and not Paul? But clearly it is Paul who was the founder of the church in Ephesus.

            That is Presbyterianism at its biblical foundation. They idea Peter was the founder of the church is silly. Paul was the founder. Get with it fella!

          2. Timoth P read this….oops it says that the founders of the church were the Apostles. It totally destroys your claim that peter was the founder of the church. Oh my goodness this is not looking good for you using these quotes in the second century. All you claims have just vanished before you and presbyterianism is being revealed.

            3. The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to Timothy. To him succeeded Anacletus; and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric. This man, as he had seen the blessed apostles, and had been conversant with them, might be said to have the preaching of the apostles still echoing [in his ears], and their traditions before his eyes. Nor was he alone [in this], for there were many still remaining who had received instructions from the apostles. In the time of this Clement, no small dissension having occurred among the brethren at Corinth, the Church in Rome dispatched a most powerful letter to the Corinthians, exhorting them to peace, renewing their faith, and declaring the tradition which it had lately received from the apostles, proclaiming the one God, omnipotent, the Maker of heaven and earth, the Creator of man, who brought on the deluge, and called Abraham, who led the people from the land of Egypt, spoke with Moses, set forth the law, sent the prophets, and who has prepared fire for the devil and his angels.”

          3. Walt, unfortunately there is not a reply space after your quotes but I do wish you would read my comments before trying to twist what I said

            “Timoth P read this….oops it says that the founders of the church were the Apostles. It totally destroys your claim that peter was the founder of the church”

            Now Walt, please tell me where I claimed that Peter “was the founder of the church”. If you knew anything about the bible and Church history of course Peter was not the founder of the Church, never claimed to be and not taught by the Catholic church. And of course Peter did not establish every Church that sprung up throughout the Roman empire. So I have no problem with Paul being given credit for founding the Church at Ephesus. Or Peter and Paul being given credit for founding the Church in Rome. Maybe Walt you could learn something by reading about the St. Thomas Christians and their beliefs from Kerala India who trace their origins to the evangelistic activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. Now it would have been difficult for St. Peter to have founded a Church in India since he never went to India.
            So Walt, where did I “claim that Peter was the founder of the church” ? And who was the first Pope? And when are you going to respond to my question about Peter’s preeminence in the last chapter of John’s gospel. And are you ready to debate the doctrine of the real presence based on the bible alone?

  8. Reformed Presbytery’s Explanation and Defence of the Terms of Communion http://www.covenanter.org/reformed/2015/8/24/an-explanation-and-defense-of-the-terms-of-communion?rq=Terms%20of%20Communion%20

    Excerpt: “The propriety of explicit terms of admission to the privileges of the Christian Church will also appear, by turning our attention to the following, and such like very solemn and divinely inspired injunctions. I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind, and in the same judgment. Only let your conversation be as it becometh the Gospel of Christ; that, whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the Gospel.” From the express words of the Holy Spirit in these passages, it is abundantly plain that the union positively required consists not merely in worshipping together, within the same walls, or in sitting down together at the same holy table of the Lord. It evidently comprehends a union in sentiment, and in the open profession of the truth as it is in Jesus. They must “be perfectly joined together in the same mind, and must speak the same things;” but in every period of the church false doctrines have actually been propagated-misunderstandings and divisions have taken place. How error, which the adversaries of truth have taught and propagated, in their own language, and in their own way, can be either consistently or successfully refuted, and the opposite truths fairly stated, so as to form a proper contrast, unless we meet our opponents on their own ground, and also use human language in exhibiting a faithful testimony for the truth, it is not easy to see. If we should simply refer them to the Scriptures without any reasoning on the subject, they would reckon themselves secure in the possession of their erroneous opinions. Nor is it less difficult to discern how divisions can be properly prevented, or misunderstandings removed, without clearly stating and explaining our sentiments. We cannot otherwise consistently walk together as those who are agreed, “Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” And firmly believing “That there is one body, and one Spirit, even as we are called in one hope of our calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism.” It is purely in subserviency to this Scriptural union that we insist on having distinct terms of communion.”

  9. For any Catholics and non-Catholics, please review the following information.

    AGAINST THE PAPACY AND ANTICHRIST THE POPE OF ROME, Primary Successor to Judas Iscariot & Enemy to the True Catholic Church of Jesus Christ.

    http://www.truecovenanter.com/anti_papacy/index.htm

    and:

    ANTI-ROMANIST HOMEPAGE.

    “The Papists think the Protestant Doctrine is dangerous to Salvation; and the Protestants know the Popish Doctrine to be so.”—Matthew Poole, The Nullity of the Romish Faith. (1666).

    http://www.covenanter.org/subjects-1/2015/6/29/romanism?rq=papacy

  10. Timothy P, let me clarify, anyone who denies the dirty of Christ is teaching heresy. Not sure what that has to do with Roman Catholicism being the fulfillment of the biblical apostasy of scripture?

  11. Timothy P wrote:

    “I guess Timothy K I have a higher respect for the intelligence of those who read these post then you do but I apologize if anyone did not comprehend. And again talking about cutting and pasting did you ever find that list of scholars to support your position on the meaning of “Type, Figure and Symbol”. If you don’t have a list a single scholar and his arguments would be appreciated.”

    I provided a significant list of reformed literature above that are all historicist in nature, and all point to the Romish Papacy as Antichrist. There was not one scholar during the first and second reformation, and even in early American among the reformed, that did not agree that the Papacy and Romish religion was Antichrist, and founded upon the devil. If you really believe that Tim dreamed all this up without significant biblical and historical church support, please dig a little bit deeper into Church history and learn the facts.

    Even the major confessions in the reformations all identified the Papacy as Antichrist. This was not a novel idea developed by Tim on this blog, but this was full agreement by the entire nations of Scotland, England, Ireland, Netherlands and in many ways all of Switzerland, parts of France and Germany.

    All of early colonial America believed in the Romish Antichrist, and actually had on the law books forbidden the Romish religion in the land.

    Were you taught this in Roman Catholic school Tim? No, and I was not either. I was never taught any truth on Christian history in my Roman Catholic classes and catechism class. I was taught only what was designed to brain wash me against all Protestant religions and convince me the Roman Catholic religion was the only true religion. It believe it most of my life, even past graduation of college. I was convinced.

    Now, after reading church history and Scripture, it is absolutely clear that Antichrist is the Papacy and Romish religion that has few that see it in our generation. All the modern Protestant churches are daughters and supporters of Rome and the modern Popes. All Presidents, Queens, Prime Ministers, Senators, Congressman, etc. all bow to the Pope as the global head of the Christian Church.

    How times have changed in the last 200+ years!

    1. Walt posted my comment

      “And again talking about cutting and pasting did you ever find that list of scholars to support your position on the meaning of “Type, Figure and Symbol”. If you don’t have a list a single scholar and his arguments would be appreciated.”

      and then went off went off again on his diatribe about the Catholic church being the AntiChrist. Of course Walt didn’t even attempt to address the quote that he posted. And no one on this website does more cutting and pasting the Walt, so Walt why don’t you help Timothy K and Kevin out while I go back and see if I can figure out what question Timothy K wanted me to answer before he would address the issue.

      1. ” Walt, why don’t you help Timothy K and Kevin out while I go back and see if I can figure out what question Timothy K wanted me to answer before he would address the issue. ” it’s interesting to me that many Roman Catholics come here with the sole purpose of cutting and pasting Catholic propaganda, or listing endless quotes from the fathers, and yet when it comes time to answer hard hitting questions posed by Tim K about the real issues, can’t even remember what the question was. I have observed throughout a long time at Out of His mouth, with Ken, Mark, yourself and others, there is more interest in reducing the author’s status among the “experts” , then to actually take on the questions. Timothy P, Wilnot etc. I’m more interested in your ability to deal with the facts that oppose Rome’s position then just dropping the we have history and scholarship on our side. In the end it’s about the truth.

      2. Timothy P said:

        “And again talking about cutting and pasting did you ever find that list of scholars to support your position on the meaning of “Type, Figure and Symbol”.”

        What exactly do you mean by type, figure and symbol?

        I assumed you were looking for someone else besides time as a scholar who identified the Romish Antichrist in the types, symbols and figures.

        If you are not concerned about his reference to the Romish Antichrist in the Scriptures, and the support he has from literally hundreds of other scholars, what exactly is it that you need a secondary scholarly opinion that supports his?

  12. “1. From the first Establishment of Christianity until the 16th Century. — France, or, as it was formerly called, Gaul, was among the first of the European countries in which Christian churches were founded. Roman Catholic writers tell us that the apostle Peter ordained bishops for Limoges, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Rheims, Aries, Sens, le Mans, Vienne, Chalons, Bourges, Clermont, and Saintes. This statement is not historical; but it is certain that Christianity was planted in many parts of Gaul at least as early as the 2d century.

    The first Christians in Gaul doubtless came from Asia Minor. We may assume as certain that the number of churches was already tolerably large at the time of Irenseus (q.v.) who in 198 presided at three provincial synods, and seems to have established a school of catechists at Lyons.

    At the beginning of the 4th century there was no province in Gaul as to which we have not accounts of bishoprics, or at least of Christian churches. Of the nations which founded new kingdoms in Gaul in the 5th century the Burgundians were already Christians when they left the southern districts of Germany, and settled between the rivers Saone and Rhone and the Alps, before the year 417.”…..

    “The kings, however were not equally steadfast in their opposition to the demands of thee popes, and often made concessions in the hope, with the aid of the popes, of increasing their power at home. Thus the new Pragmatic Sanction, which the Council of Bourges (q.v.) established in 1438, was soon set aside by the succeeding kings.

    In all the great ecclesiastical movements of the Middle Ages France took a prominent part. Most of the efforts made either to overthrow the papacy for the purpose of restoring a purer forma of Christianity, SEE WALDENSES; SEE ALBIGENSES, or to reform the Church from within, either centred in France, or found there the most vigorous support.”

    http://www.biblicalcyclopedia.com/F/france.html

  13. Against Jovinianus is a two-volume treatise by the Church Father Saint Jerome.

    Jovinianus’ propositions

    Jovinianus, about whom little more is known than what is to be found in Jerome’s treatise, published a Latin treatise outlining several opinions:

    That a virgin is no better, as such, than a wife in the sight of God.
    Abstinence from food is no better than a thankful partaking of food.
    A person baptized with the Spirit as well as with water cannot sin.
    All sins are equal.
    There is but one grade of punishment and one of reward in the future state.

    In addition to this, he held the birth of Jesus Christ to have been by a “true parturition,” and was thus refuting the orthodoxy of the time, according to which, the infant Jesus passed through the walls of the womb as his Resurrection body afterwards did, out of the tomb or through closed doors.
    Response to Jovinianus

    Pammachius, Jerome’s friend, brought Jovinian’s book to the notice of Siricius, bishop of Rome, and it was shortly afterwards condemned in synods at that city and at Milan about 390 CE.

    He subsequently sent Jovinian’s books to Jerome, who answered them in the present treatise in 393. Little is known of Jovinian, but it has been conjectured from Jerome’s remark in the treatise against Vigilantius, where Jovinian is said to have “amidst pheasants and pork rather belched out than breathed out his life,” and by a kind of transmigration to have transmitted his opinions into Vigilantius, that he had died before 409, the date of that work.
    Outline of Against Jovinianus

    The first book is wholly on the first proposition of Jovinianus, that relating to marriage and virginity. The first three chapters are introductory. The rest may be divided into three parts:

    Chapters 4-13 – An exposition, in Jerome’s sense, of St. Paul’s teaching in I Cor. 7.
    Chapters 14-39 – A statement of the teaching which Jerome derives from the various books of both the Old and the New Testaments.
    A denunciation of Jovinianus (chapter 40), praise of virginity, and critique of marriage as a source of worldly distraction.

    Sources
    This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). “article name needed “. Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.

    https://www.revolvy.com/topic/Against%20Jovinianus&item_type=topic

  14. Tim,

    See this book, pages 419 as it seems this is a diamond in the ruff that corresponds to your own commentary.

    CHAPTER XVIII.
    JOVINIAN AND VlGILANTIUS.

    Section I.
    From the galaxy of illustrious names, on which we have been gazing, we turn to that small cluster of obscure men who strove to call back the Church to Apostolic simplicity and truth. The need of reform had become more and more pressing, but the great leaders and teachers of the age had failed to perform their duty; nevertheless the truth was not
    left wholly without witnesses. The name of Aerius was introduced in our former work^ by anticipation rather than in the exact order of time. He flourished about the middle of the
    fourth century, and may be regarded as the first Protestant after the Council of Nicaea. His teaching on many points
    anticipated in a remarkable degree that of the most enlightened Protestants of the Reformation.

    JoviNiAN.
    Little is known of the personal history of this monk. As in the case of Aerius, his own writings have perished, his opinions having come down to us only through his opponents Jerome and Augustine. He received his education in an Italian convent,
    but his bold and free spirit refused to be shackled by the dead
    forms which surrounded him, and about a.d. 388 he began to
    enunciate sounder and more spiritual principles. Especially he
    denied the superior merit of celibacy and as just then the popular feeling, consequent on the death of Blesilla, was running against Jerome and Monachism, he made many
    converts, not only of the laity, but also of monks and nuns; and many of both sexes were induced to marry.*”

    https://ia902608.us.archive.org/11/items/witnessesforchri01back/witnessesforchri01back.pdf

  15. Today’s Show: THE CHURCH MILITANT

    “Chris discusses a new Catholic group called “The Church Militant” that has received attention on the Drudge Report, the New York Times and other mainstream news outlets. The group has apparently called for a radical reform of the Catholic Church and of America itself. More importantly, they are rabidly anti-Protestant and openly condemn Martin Luther as a heretic and claim that the Great Reformation is responsible for the evils that are destroying Western civilization. Can they be serious? Incredibly, they are completely unaware that Protestantism founded both America and the free world. Without the Reformation they would not have the freedom of speech, or freedom of the press necessary to run their website, or to complain (as they often do) about the many corruptions in the Church of Rome. Hear audio from the group’s main spokesperson as we analyze their views.”

    http://www.noiseofthunderradio.com/noise-of-thunder-radio-show/2017/2/22/notr-the-church-militant-22217.html

  16. Timothy P says:

    “Walt you are familiar that the title Roman Catholic came about after the English church separated and became known as the Anglo-Catholic Church.”

    Exactly our point. The Catholic or Universal Church that Augustine was speaking about has nothing to do with the “Roman Catholic” religion. The true universal church existed from Abraham and the Apostles were in that line as a continuation as one voice crying in the wilderness (we call this the early apostolic church built on Christ as it is Christ’s church). There is not two churches and the true church has always been a remnant of faithful testimony of witnesses.

    Your Roman Catholic religion is a clear and obvious departure and schism true the true church of Christ in history. The early protestants proved this in the 4th century as we learned on this blog and as you rightly pointed out separated as well.

    I don’t know what more factual evidence you need.

  17. Tim K,

    Do you know the first date or period where Peter was identified as the first Pope or the first Universal Bishop? Was it Augustine comments that Tim P showed above? It seems like the perfect date around 386 and his influence by Ambrose that he was founder of this heretical teaching that Pope Peter is head of the church?

    It appears he also practiced the heresy of the vow of celibacy…see below.

    “It was at Milan that Augustine’s life changed. While still at Carthage, he had begun to move away from Manichaeism, in part because of a disappointing meeting with a key exponent of Manichaean theology. At Milan, this movement continued. His mother, Monica, pressured him to become a Catholic, but it was the bishop of Milan, Ambrose, who had most influence over Augustine. Ambrose was a master of rhetoric like Augustine himself, but older and more experienced. Prompted in part by Ambrose’s sermons, and partly by his own studies, in which he steadfastly pursued a quest for ultimate truth, Augustine renounced Manichaeism. After a flirtation with skepticism, he then became an enthusiastic student of Neoplatonism, and for a time believed he was making real progress in his quest.”

    And:

    “In the summer of 386, after having read an account of the life of Saint Anthony of the Desert which greatly inspired him, Augustine underwent a profound personal crisis and decided to convert to Christianity, abandon his career in rhetoric, quit his teaching position in Milan, give up any ideas of marriage, and devote himself entirely to serving God and the practices of priesthood, which included celibacy.”

  18. Timothy P, did you see where the first Protestants spoke out against Augustine and Jerome here? Do you need more evidence that the Augustine vow of celibacy was protested against?

    “JoviNiAN.
    Little is known of the personal history of this monk. As in the case of Aerius, his own writings have perished, his opinions having come down to us only through his opponents Jerome and Augustine. He received his education in an Italian convent, but his bold and free spirit refused to be shackled by the dead forms which surrounded him, and about a.d. 388 he began to enunciate sounder and more spiritual principles. Especially he denied the superior merit of celibacy and as just then the popular feeling, consequent on the death of Blesilla, was running against Jerome and Monachism, he made many converts, not only of the laity, but also of monks and nuns; and many of both sexes were induced to marry.*”

    Timothy P, this is all just fascinating. Just think about the incredible truth and facts and evidence about your silly religion that we are gathering here for you and your other Roman Catholic brothers. Go shout out to them to come here and learn the true history.

    I’m really excited for you guys as now all these facts are coming to the surface after 1600 years of suppression and silence. You are witnessing history in the making where now all your Roman Catholic brothers can come here and learn about the true origins of Roman Catholicism.

    I knew with enough digging I would prove it to myself as I always set the bar so high but thanks to your continued defense of Rome we have now uncovered the true details.

    Come join our true Presbyterian church that is firmly founded on Christ alone. Don’t put any more effort into your romish religion founded on Jerome, Ambrose and Augustine. You don’t need that problem with God who calls you to come out of her my people. Get saved dear brother and come into the true one catholic church of Christ. We are reaching our hand down to lift you out of the ditch and bring you up with us.

    As you admitted from birth to university you have been indoctrinated so to speak in this romish religion. Now is the time to leave and bring all your friends and family. God is calling to you today. Lets getter done!!!

  19. Tim P,

    Thanks as this is getting so exciting. I just read that Ireneaus was a Presbyterian and taught Presbyterian government.

    “He clearly identifies the local-church hierarchy composed of bishop, presbyters, and deacons and claims to have spoken in some of the churches through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. He is the second after Clement to mention the Pauline epistles.[6]”

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_Fathers

    1. Walt, sorry I missed this post about Ireneaus being a Presbyterian. Now before I post his comments on the Eucharist again why don’t you explain these comments from Ireneaus. Walt wrote

      “Tim P,

      Thanks as this is getting so exciting. I just read that Ireneaus was a Presbyterian and taught Presbyterian government.”

      Now Irenaeus wrote

      ““It is possible, then, for everyone in every church, who may wish to know the truth, to contemplate the tradition of the apostles which has been made known to us throughout the whole world. And we are in a position to enumerate those who were instituted bishops by the apostles and their successors down to our own times, men who neither knew nor taught anything like what these heretics rave about” (Against Heresies 3:3:1 [A.D. 189]).

      “But since it would be too long to enumerate in such a volume as this the successions of all the churches, we shall confound all those who, in whatever manner, whether through self-satisfaction or vainglory, or through blindness and wicked opinion, assemble other than where it is proper, by pointing out here the successions of the bishops of the greatest and most ancient church known to all, founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul—that church which has the tradition and the faith with which comes down to us after having been announced to men by the apostles. For with this Church, because of its superior origin, all churches must agree, that is, all the faithful in the whole world. And it is in her that the faithful everywhere have maintained the apostolic tradition” (ibid., 3:3:2).

      “Polycarp also was not only instructed by apostles, and conversed with many who had seen Christ, but was also, by apostles in Asia, appointed bishop of the church in Smyrna, whom I also saw in my early youth, for he tarried [on earth] a very long time, and, when a very old man, gloriously and most nobly suffering martyrdom, departed this life, having always taught the things which he had learned from the apostles, and which the Church has handed down, and which alone are true. To these things all the Asiatic churches testify, as do also those men who have succeeded Polycarp down to the present time” (ibid., 3:3:4).

      “Since therefore we have such proofs, it is not necessary to seek the truth among others which it is easy to obtain from the Church; since the apostles, like a rich man [depositing his money] in a bank, lodged in her hands most copiously all things pertaining to the truth, so that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life. . . . For how stands the case? Suppose there arise a dispute relative to some important question among us, should we not have recourse to the most ancient churches with which the apostles held constant conversation, and learn from them what is certain and clear in regard to the present question?” (ibid., 3:4:1).

      “[I]t is incumbent to obey the presbyters who are in the Church—those who, as I have shown, possess the succession from the apostles; those who, together with the succession of the episcopate, have received the infallible charism of truth, according to the good pleasure of the Father. But [it is also incumbent] to hold in suspicion others who depart from the primitive succession, and assemble themselves together in any place whatsoever, either as heretics of perverse minds, or as schismatics puffed up and self-pleasing, or again as hypocrites, acting thus for the sake of lucre and vainglory. For all these have fallen from the truth” (ibid., 4:26:2).

      “The true knowledge is the doctrine of the apostles, and the ancient organization of the Church throughout the whole world, and the manifestation of the body of Christ according to the succession of bishops, by which succession the bishops have handed down the Church which is found everywhere” (ibid., 4:33:8)”

      Now Walt, to which church did Irenaeus say that all the other churches must agree????????. Walt do you agree with the comments Irenaeus made above? I remember Mike dismissing Irenaeus on the One Fold Blog because Mike claimed Irenaeus was a Roman Catholic. One thing for sure, he wasn’t a Presbyterian.

      1. Timothy P wrote,

        “Now Walt, to which church did Irenaeus say that all the other churches must agree????????. Walt do you agree with the comments Irenaeus made above? I remember Mike dismissing Irenaeus on the One Fold Blog because Mike claimed Irenaeus was a Roman Catholic. One thing for sure, he wasn’t a Presbyterian.”

        I just read every quote you made by irenaeus and clearly from what you posted he is a Presbyterian. I think you might need to study Presbyterian church government. We believe scripture teaches in national churches run by bishops, also called elders, and presbyters. We also believe that the apostles doctrine was based upon scripture and was in agreement to scripture. We believe in inerrant confessions of faith, catechism, creeds, and oral tradition that is founded upon and in agreement with the infallible word of God. Everything irenaeus said is Presbyterian.

        He is not teaching, in the quotes you provided, for men to accept oral tradition that is contradictory to the apostles doctrine that is founded upon scripture. In fact he labels these groups heretics, etc.

        “But [it is also incumbent] to hold in suspicion others who depart from the primitive succession, and assemble themselves together in any place whatsoever, either as heretics of perverse minds, or as schismatics puffed up and self-pleasing, or again as hypocrites, acting thus for the sake of lucre and vainglory. For all these have fallen from the truth”

        This is Presbyterian if his underlying position is that this doctrine from the primitative succession is the scriptures and the apostles doctrine which are based upon the scripture.

        Presbyterians hold to all sorts of church testimony as subordinate historical testimony that is truth when it agrees with the primary historical infallible scripture testimony. We are not independents or Baptists or mormans or 7th day Adventists or Anglicans or Roman Catholics who claim that their uninspired, man made hokey dokey prophetic testimony is superior to the scripture. No, we are the only true and biblical form of church government found in scriptures and in historical testimony.

        It is clear to me that irenaeus was not talking about the heretical and schismatic Roman Catholicism established in the 4th century. Now, be very careful.

        If you next plan to argue that all man inspired testimony is therefore truth and since irenaeus was properly defining presbyterianism over independency or the errors of Roman Catholicism in that individuals alone and popes alone are infallible, so irenaeus belief in a speaking, bleeding and talking Eucharest (if that is what he believed and taught) must be true as well, then you and he are in error.

        We believe many churches have errored and many will continue to error, and when anyone holds the church or the pope or the minister (like irenaeus) above the triune God speaking in the scripture, they do error and fall away from being Presbyterian and biblical. Presbyterianism is the only divinely appoint church government in scripture and history.

        Be assured Timothy P it is not Roman Catholicism nor Anglicanism nor independency nor Mormonism nor any other of the 20,000 to 50,000 denominations claiming to be the one true church of Jesus Christ. Even our modern Presbyterian churches lack and reject their biblical and apostolic tradition. Instead, they hold individuals up as the independents do and reject the body of elders and presbyters who gave us the truth in confessions, creeds, etc. Like true independents and Roman catholics and Anglicans they reject true biblical church government and accept oral tradition of men over the inspired tradition of God.

        Be a true Presbyterian Timothy P and get away from that Roman Catholic religion.

        Typed on phone from Europe, ignore mistakes.

        1. Walt writes
          “I just read every quote you made by irenaeus and clearly from what you posted he is a Presbyterian”

          Really Walt. So let’s be specific. Irenaeus wrote

          “founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul—that church which has the tradition and the faith with which comes down to us after having been announced to men by the apostles. For with this Church, because of its superior origin, all churches must agree, that is, all the faithful in the whole world”

          Now Walt you state that Peter was never in Rome but pray tell me how Peter participated in founding and organizing the Church in Rome when Peter was never in Rome. And by the way Walt, can you tell me which city St. Peter was buried in since you say he was never in Rome. Surely if Peter had been buried in some other city that city would have claimed that notoriety wouldn’t you think. So Walt, which city was it?
          And of course Irenaeus wrote

          “For with this Church, because of its superior origin, all churches must agree, that is, all the faithful in the whole world”

          Now Walt you will have to let us know if there is a “church of Scotland” in Rome but I guarantee you if there is it cannot trace it’s bishops back to the time of Irenaeus.

          And along that same point Walt, Irenaeus wrote

          “And we are in a position to enumerate those who were instituted bishops by the apostles and their successors down to our own times”

          So Walt, are you in a position to” enumerate those who were instituted bishops by the apostles and their successors down to our own times’???? Let’s face the fact that you can’t go back any further then John Calvin. So Irenaeus belonged to a Church that was formed in what year? I can understand why you would want to avoid the historical argument for the true Church.

          1. By the way Walt, you wrote

            “I just read every quote you made by irenaeus and clearly from what you posted he is a Presbyterian

            Maybe you could give us your opinion on these quotes I have posted before on Irenaeus and tell me you still think Irenaeus was a Presbyterian. Maybe you would be willing to share them with friends unlike Kevin for a second opinion. I would be interested
            Irenaeus wrote:

            1, But vain in every respect are they who despise the entire dispensation of God, and disallow the salvation of the flesh, and treat with contempt its regeneration, maintaining that it is not capable of incorruption. But if this indeed do not attain salvation, then neither did the Lord redeem us with His blood, nor is the cup of the Eucharist the communion of His blood, nor the bread which we break the communion of His body. 1 Corinthians 10:16 For blood can only come from veins and flesh, and whatsoever else makes up the substance of man, such as the Word of God was actually made.

            2) And as we are His members. we are also nourished by means of the creation (and He Himself grants the creation to us, for He causes His sun to rise, and sends rain when He wills Matthew 5:45). He has acknowledged the cup (which is a part of the creation) as His own blood, from which He bedews our blood; and the bread (also a part of the creation) He has established as His own body, from which He gives increase to our bodies.

            3. When, therefore, the mingled cup and the manufactured bread receives the Word of God, and the Eucharist of the blood and the body of Christ is made, from which things the substance of our flesh is increased and supported, how can they affirm that the flesh is incapable of receiving the gift of God, which is life eternal, which [flesh] is nourished from the body and blood of the Lord, and is a member of Him?— even as the blessed Paul declares in his Epistle to the Ephesians, that “we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones.” Ephesians 5:30

            4. And as we are His members, we are also man, for a spirit has not bones nor flesh; Luke 24:39 but [he refers to] that dispensation [by which the Lord became] an actual man, consisting of flesh, and nerves, and bones—that [flesh] which is nourished by the cup which is His blood, and receives increase from the bread which is His body. And just as a cutting from the vine planted in the ground fructifies in its season, or as a grain of wheat falling into the earth and becoming decomposed, rises with manifold increase by the Spirit of God, who contains all things, and then, through the wisdom of God, serves for the use of men, and having received the Word of God, becomes the Eucharist, which is the body and blood of Christ; so also our bodies, being nourished by it, and deposited in the earth, and suffering decomposition there, shall rise at their appointed time, the Word of God granting them resurrection to the glory of God, even the Father, who freely gives to this mortal immortality, and to this corruptible incorruption,

            5. But how can they be consistent with themselves, [when they say] that the bread over which thanks have been given is the body of their Lord, and the cup His blood, if they do not call Himself the Son of the Creator of the world, that is, His Word, through whom the wood fructifies, and the fountains gush forth, and the earth gives “first the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear.”

            6)Then, again, how can they say that the flesh, which is nourished with the body of the Lord and with His blood, goes to corruption, and does not partake of life? Let them, therefore, either alter their opinion, or cease from offering the things just mentioned. But our opinion is in accordance with the Eucharist, and the Eucharist in turn establishes our opinion. For we offer to Him His own, announcing consistently the fellowship and union of the flesh and Spirit. For as the bread, which is produced from the earth, when it receives the invocation of God, is no longer common bread, but the Eucharist, consisting of two realities, earthly and heavenly; so also our bodies, when they receive the Eucharist, are no longer corruptible, having the hope of the resurrection to eternity.

          2. Timothy P, before you resort to your typical cut and paste apologetic on Irenæus, I would encourage you to examine the context in which these things were written. As I have pointed out to you several times before, you have yet to demonstrate how Irenæus’ comments support the Roman Catholic position. You have simply cut and pasted them as Irenæus’ “comments on the Real Presence,” even though he never actually uses the words “Real” or “Presence” in his comments. (In fact, they are his comments on the incarnation, and I happen to agree with them.) Yet you continue purveying these as Irenæus’ support for something distinctly Roman Catholic. They aren’t even pasted in order, and the original works from which they are extracted are nowhere listed. From your repeated pastes, and the fact that you consider it an imposition to have to include the citations, and list them in order, and understand the context, I do not think you even understand what Irenæus has said, and much less, what he meant by it. As I wrote to you earlier,

            “The fact that you are reluctant actually to cite the original sources (as opposed to just pasting them as if they actually are Irenæus’ comments on the Real Presence”) or even look at them in their original order, shows me that you are simply engaging “drive by” apologetics. Context matters, Timothy P, and I have insisted since May of 2016 when you first posted the comments that you look at them in their original context. For some reason you refuse to do it, and consider it an imposition to do so.”

            Give it a go, Timothy P. Tell us the context in which Irenæus wrote these alleged “comments on the ‘Real Presence'”. I think you’ll find such a study quite enlightening, and much more meaningful than simply cutting and pasting. We are almost approaching a full year since you were challenged to explain their original context. Why are you so reluctant to do what all scholars must do?

            Tim

          3. Timothy P, you cited Irenæus as follows:

            “For with this Church, because of its superior origin, all churches must agree, that is, all the faithful in the whole world”.

            A typical cut and paste job without thinking through the issue, Timothy P. Did you know that we do not have the original Greek of this work by Irenæus, and what we do have is considered a “barbaric” Latin translation of a lost Greek original? In other words, we have no evidence that Irenæus said “agree” (the Latin word here is “convenire,” which means literaly, “to meet with” or “to come together”, not “to agree with”), but we do have reliable evidence elsewhere that Irenæus did not think all churches had to agree with Rome?

            Even this Roman Catholic apologist saw Irenæus’ statement to mean not that all churches must agree with Rome, but rather that the tradition of the apostles had been preserved in Rome by all the surrounding churches:

            “For to this Church, on account of more potent principality, it is necessary that every Church, that is, those who are on every side faithful, resort, in which (Church) ever, by those who are on every side, has been preserved that tradition which is from the Apostles.” (Berington & Kirk, The Faith of Catholics, vol. I, 2nd ed. (New York, 1885) 248)

            And further, how can you even suggest that Irenæus really believed that all churches must agree with the church at Rome, when Eusebius records that Irenæus himself rebuked and admonished “pope” Victor, believing the church at Rome had acted inappropriately?

            “But this did not please all the bishops. And they besought him to consider the things of peace, and of neighborly unity and love. Words of theirs are extant, sharply rebuking Victor. Among them was Irenæus, who, sending letters in the name of the brethren in Gaul over whom he presided, maintained that the mystery of the resurrection of the Lord should be observed only on the Lord’s day. He fittingly admonishes Victor that he should not cut off whole churches of God which observed the tradition of an ancient custom and after many other words he proceeds as follows” (Eusebius, Church History, Book V, chapter 24)

            “Sharply rebuking”? “Fittingly admonishes Victor that he should not…”? That doesn’t sound to me like Irenæus thought all churches should agree with Rome. And then Irenæus adds this anecdote about Polycarp’s disagreement with “pope” Anicetus:

            “And when the blessed Polycarp was at Rome in the time of Anicetus, and they disagreed a little about certain other things, they immediately made peace with one another, not caring to quarrel over this matter. For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp not to observe what he had always observed with John the disciple of our Lord, and the other apostles with whom he had associated; neither could Polycarp persuade Anicetus to observe it as he said that he ought to follow the customs of the presbyters that had preceded him.” (Eusebius, Church History, Book V, chapter 24)

            Yes, that’s right. Irenæus records for us that “blessed Polycarp” disagreed with “pope” Anicetus, who could not persuade Polycarp. Instead of criticizing Polycarp for not agreeing with the church at Rome, Irenæus commends them both for maintaining peace even though they did not agree!

            Do you still believe that Against Heresies, Book III.3 is about every church agreeing with Rome? How can you maintain that when there is so much evidence that Irenæaus actually disagreed with the church at Rome, and further, commends Polycarp for making peace with Anicetus even though he disagreed with him, and commends Anicetus for showing respect to someone who did not agree with him?

            As I have said before, Timothy P, your cut and paste approach does not serve you well; it denies to you the context you need in order to understand what you are proposing.

            Thanks,

            Tim

  20. Tim P said,

    “Or Peter and Paul being given credit for founding the Church in Rome. Maybe Walt you could learn something by reading about the St. Thomas Christians and their beliefs from Kerala India who trace their origins to the evangelistic activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. Now it would have been difficult for St. Peter to have founded a Church in India since he never went to India.”

    There is no evidence except your unproven tradition that Peter ever went to Rome and significant proof he never touched foot in Rome. He certainly never founded a church in Rome as Paul did…this we know as fact.

    It is very strange. I really thought you were under the view that Jesus Christ built His church upon Peter and that Peter was the head of all churches.

    Are you saying that today’s Pope has no authority over what Roman Catholic churches are established and which ones are closed worldwide? That if he wanted to open or close a new church he has no authority, and only those decisions can be at local level like Presbyterianism?

    Thank you for making it clear Peter was not the head or founder of the Christian Church. I was hopeful you would admit it as just a silly idea.

  21. Here is a great video explaining how the Catholics treated some of the Protestant Martyrs. It is helpful as the more you dig into this 2nd-5th century I think we are going to find more Protestants facing similar fate by Roman Catholics leaders.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPAwl9TvoH8

    The gospel is incredible for those who teach it.

  22. Thanks Walt. Where did Jesus ever advocate the torture or brutal killing of those who don’t believe like them?! I once listened to Dave Anders on his Catholic radio show, when one of his Catholic callers called to know the story of the inquisition and the persecution of Protestants through the centuries by the Roman church, for 20 minutes justify how those persecutions and killings were justified. I knew that morning as my jaw dropped hearing this so called expert of Catholicism make excuses to this Catholic woman for heinous sins committed by his church, that the heart of a man is desperately wicked above all things.

  23. Kevin, this book digs into the research that provides Rome’s true past.

    Ecclesiastical Megalomania: The Economic and Political Thought of the Roman Catholic Church, by John W. Robbins

    http://www.trinitylectures.org/ecclesiastical-megalomania-the-economic-and-political-thought-of-the-roman-catholic-church-paperback-p-159.html

    The Back Of The Book says:

    “Contents: Part 1: Envy Exalted; Private Property; The Universal Destination of Goods; Rerum Novarum: On the Condition of the Working Classes; Subsequent Encyclicals; Feudalism and Corporativism; Liberation Theology; The Redistributive State and Interventionism; Has the Pope Beatified Ayn Rand?

    Part 2: Autocracy Adored; Lord Acton on Roman Catholic Political Thought; Roman Catholic Political Theory; The Political Thought of Thomas Aquinas; Persecution, Inquisition, and Slavery; The Nineteenth Century; The Magisterium; Solidarity, Subsidiarity, and the Common Good; Fascism and Nazism; Totalitarianism; Strategy for Subverting a Republic; World Government; 2000: Jubilee, Punctuated by Apologies; Appendices: The Donation of Constantine; The Vatican Decree of 1870; Bibliography; Index; Scripture Index

    Ecclesiastical Megalomania:
    The Economic and Political Thought of the
    Roman Catholic Church

    The noted English political philosopher A. P. D’EntrËves argued that “it is hardly possible for the modern man to accept the system which St. Thomas founded…without renouncing the notion of civil and religious liberty which we have some right to consider the most precious conquest of the West.”

    Ecclesiastical Megalomania explains the conflict between Roman Catholicism and freedom in detail, relying on official Vatican pronouncements to demonstrate that Roman Catholicism is hostile to constitutional government, political and economic freedom, and the private property order. The “Mother Church” is the mother of feudalism, the corporative state, liberation theology, the welfare state, and fascism. Those who wish to preserve human freedom must understand the philosophy of the Roman Catholic Church.

    Dr. John W. Robbins holds his Ph.D. in Political Philosophy from the Johns Hopkins University. His previous books include Without a Prayer: Ayn Rand and the Close of Her System.”

    As we see on this blog, few Catholics ever stay around long as I think over time they begin to see the truth about their religion and soon the truth makes them leave this blog with a sense of shame and concerns they have been mislead their whole lives. It is all not a simple “anti-catholic” argument as I was taught growing up. There is a lot more to the untold story of the Roman Catholic religion that never sees the light of day.

  24. Full Title: Acts of the Council of Trent: With the Antidote
    Author: John Calvin
    Pages: 182
    File Size: 7.53MB
    Publisher: Still Waters Revival Books

    “Scottish theologian William Cunningham once noted that, “Calvin is the man who, next to St. Paul, has done most good to mankind.” (cited in Christian History magazine, Vol. 5, No. 4). Here we have one example why, in Calvin’s willingness to stand against false religion.

    This is a one-of-a-kind Reformation refutation of this wretched Roman standard. Trent is still upheld today and remains binding according to Rome – even after Vatican II and the signing of the anti-Christ Colson/Neuhaus document Evangelicals and Catholics Together.

    Thus, this Antidote remains pertinent, citing fully each section of Trent that Calvin is attacking. The major points dealt with include the rule of faith, original sin, justification and the sacrifice and merits of Christ. In regard to all of these points, it is clearly shown that the heresies of the Papists are numerous and deadly.

    Written near the end of Calvin’s life, we have here a clear demonstration of Calvin’s mature thought, countering Rome, and reiterating some of the most important principles of Reformation thought.”

  25. Sorry I am so far behind in correspondence but let me try to make some responses.

    Timothy K wrote

    ” Clearly these men see (and saw) that an element of Roman Catholicism’s authority on earth is supported by an explicitly eschatological argument. That is what I mean by the eschatological argument. So if you could try to discover the true church apart from the historical and eschatological arguments, how would you do it?

    You also wrote,

    “How many times has a date been set for the end of the World based on eschatological arguments?”

    Indeed. Do I take this to mean that you agree that Newman’s, Marshall’s and the pope’s eschatological arguments for the primacy of Rome may be potentially flawed?”

    Timothy K, I would respond as I did before that I find trying to use an eschatological argument to prove the true church is like looking at an abstract painting. Obviously the Catholic apologist are going to see the Catholic Church and you and your friends see the prediction of the Antichrist. I am not convinced or overly impressed by Newman’s, Marshall and the popes eschatological arguments if they stood alone. What I am impressed by is the fact that the apostle’s didn’t leave us a canon list to identify the Scriptures and it took 300 years before the Church started to settle the canon debate. I also find it fascinating that you have Irenaeus, Tertullian an Augustine all pointing to the importance of Apostolic Succession. How oblivious Protestants seem to be is clearly shown in Walt’s comments. After quoting me

    “Tim P wrote:

    “So I would find the historical argument much more persuasive with a large dose of common sense. And I think the Church Fathers obviously held to the same view.””

    Walt writes
    “Is not this fascinating, really? Perfect example that a Roman Catholic will always reject Scripture at the primary method to identify the true church, and rather look to man’s uninspired testimony of error in history.”

    Can Walt explain why he is not a Gnostic Christian? He just assumes apparently that that church in the 4th century that was drenched in apostasy just lucked out and got the canon list right. And using the Scriptures as the primary method to identify the true Church as Walt suggest sure has worked out well for Protestantism, over 20,000 denominations. Walt just doesn’t seem to understand that until you historically identify the true church by what authority do you accept the New Testament Canon list?
    And then you have Kevin finding the true Church in the wilderness in Germany with pretend priest. It seem I vaguely remember Kevin posting derogatory remarks from Spurgeon on priest but I guess if they are fake priest they are OK. Timothy K, you know as well as I do that Kevin’s initial reluctance to declare Arius a heretic was due to the ingrained bias that anyone opposed to the Catholic Church must be a good Protestant. At least Walt is most consistent and willing to throw the other Protestants under the bus when they don’t agree with the Church of Scotland. And I’m not sure what Walt meant by “men’s uninspired testimony of error in History”. Somehow I would put more faith in the early church Fathers then the innumerable quotes Walt ” cuts and paste ” from post reformation authorities.

    1. Thanks, Timothy P. A couple comments. You wrote,

      “What I am impressed by is the fact that the apostle’s didn’t leave us a canon list to identify the Scriptures and it took 300 years before the Church started to settle the canon debate.”

      What you are saying, if I understand your answer, is that you are impressed by the historical argument. But I was not asking what historical arguments you find compelling. I was asking how you would find the true church apart from a historical argument.

      You also wrote,

      “Walt just doesn’t seem to understand that until you historically identify the true church by what authority do you accept the New Testament Canon list?”

      Yes, that is my question. How do you “historically identify the true church”?

      “So if you could try to discover the true church apart from the historical and eschatological arguments, how would you do it?”

      You’ve ruled out an eschatological argument, but I’m still asking how you could discover the true church apart from a historical argument. How would you do it?

      Thanks,

      Tim

      1. Timothy K, you asked

        “how you could discover the true church apart from a historical argument”

        and I would have to respond “Why would I make an attempt to discover the true church without considering the historical arguments?”. Wouldn’t you agree we need to look at all the evidence? From a Scriptural standpoint I think we also can make an extremely strong argument that the Catholic Church is the Church Christ spoke of when He said. “thou art Peter and upon the rock I will build my Church,”. It’s not either a Scriptural argument or a Historical argument , but both a Scriptural argument and a Historical argument . Isn’t it interesting how many things we disagree on based on either/or vs both/and.

        1. Timothy P, you asked,

          “It’s not either a Scriptural argument or a Historical argument , but both a Scriptural argument and a Historical argument. Isn’t it interesting how many things we disagree on based on either/or vs both/and.”

          I don’t know what you mean by this. I haven’t posited anything. I have only asked a question. You can’t agree or disagree with a question.

          In any case, can I take your answer to mean that you reject the Catholic Answers “Spiral Argument,” in which the apologist begins by assuming not that the “Scriptures” are inspired, but rather that they are just one history book among history books?

          Thanks,

          Tim

    2. Timothy P ” and using the scriptures as the primary method to identify the true church has worked out well for Protestantism.” Well Timothy P Basil of Caesarea would disagree with you. ” Let God’s inspired scripture decide between us, and in whatever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of Truth.” 330-379 AD. I’m sure Tim, Walt, and me would have no problem agreeing with Basil. How about you? Can you take off your Roman glasses and agree with Basil.?!

      1. Kevin, maybe you don’t remember me challenging Walt to a scriptural debate on the Real Presence? After I posted the verses I felt support the Catholic view, Walt said he had to figure out how to handle members of a cult before he would be willing to debate the issue. I could repost my quotes if you are willing to pinch hit for Walt. By the way, I agree with Basil. The bible speaks of oral tradition, can you tell me which oral traditions you hold. Oral tradition is a doctrine “in harmony with the word of God”

        1. Timothy P ” by the way, I agree with Basil.” Then ” the bible speaks of oral tradition” but Basil referred to the word of God to get the vote on doctrines, not oral tradition. You can’t agree with Basil and then turn around and say we should rely on some outside oral tradition. That’s not what Basil said. Let’s just be frank, Basil wasn’t a Papist.

          1. Kevin, show me where Basil denied oral tradition. And is this the same Basil who wrote the following
            quote based on oral tradition

            “For it says: He did not know her until she had given birth to her firstborn son. Now this verse has given rise to the conjecture that, after rendering pure service in accomplishing the birth of the Lord through the Holy Spirit, Mary did not renounce the customary marital relations. But in our opinion, even if none of this harms the account of piety—for virginity was necessary for service in the economy, but inquiring into what happened next out of curiosity should be avoided by reason of its mystery—nonetheless, since lovers of Christ do not accept the opinion that the Mother of God ever ceased being a virgin, we think the following testimonies suffice. Let us return to: He did not know her until she had given birth to her son. In many instances the word “until” seems to suggest a kind of temporal boundary, but in reality it indicates indefiniteness. What did the Lord mean when he said: And behold, I am with you all days, until the close of the age? Indeed, not that the Lord was not going to be with the saints after this age! Rather, it means that the promise of the present age will not be rescinded in the age to come. So we say that in this case too the word “until” should be taken in the same way. Now when firstborn is said, by no means is he the firstborn in comparison to siblings who came after him. Rather, he is called the firstborn because he was the first one to open the womb of his mother. It is also clear from the story about Zechariah that Mary was always a virgin. For there is an account, and it has been handed down to us from the tradition, that Zechariah entrusted Mary to the place for the virgins after conceiving the Lord. Then he was slaughtered by the Jews between the temple and the altar. Charges had been brought against him by the people, on the grounds that by his actions he established that incredible and famous sign: a virgin gave birth and her virginity was not destroyed. (On Fasting and Feasts, Popular Patristic Series Book 50. Kindle Locations 606-627. St Vladimir’s Seminary Press. Kindle Edition)

            Filed Under: All, For Evangelicals, Heterodoxy, Holy Fathers, Oral Tradition,

            Sorry Kevin, sounds to me like Basil was a Papist

  26. ” that anyone opposed to the Catholic Church is a good Protestant ” you grossly misstate my position. Let me clarify it for you. Your synagogue claims to be Christ’s historical body on earth. I don’t believe that. Paul uses church as a metaphor for the body of Christ, which are made up by individual members. I do not believe that the Roman Catholic Church can substitute itself for the uniquely finished work of Christ as the agency of redemption. Churches don’t connect men to God. No church owns God. He comes to men in the gospel by his choosing. Sometimes that is in the church, and sometimes that’s outside the church. Churches aren’t extensions of incarnation. The atonement is a finished work. Ephesians 1 : 7. Redemption has been accomplished. Churches can pass on his message, they can obey God, they can carry out his mission, but they can’t usurp his uniquely finished work. I have been convinced by history, scripture, and eschatological considerations that Rome is apostate. Yes you are correct, Spurgeon said justification by faith, not by priests. I’m not sure what that has to do with the fact that those who resisted the evil of Rome for the sake of being faithful to the Lord were members of the true church.

    1. Kevin, you stated

      “Paul uses church as a metaphor for the body of Christ, which are made up by individual members. ”

      Really Kevin, church is just a “metaphor for the body of Christ”? So when Christ told Peter

      ” And I tell you that you are Peter,[b] and on this rock I will build my church,”

      Christ really meant
      “and on this rock I will build the “metaphor for the body of Christ”.
      Seriously Kevin?

      Then Kevin says “No Church owns God”. Well that is correct Kevin, but Christ owns a Church. Same verse, I will build MY CHURCH. Christ didn’t say my churches leaving wiggle room for 20.000 Protestant denominations.

      By the way Kevin, I believe Walt belongs to the Presbyterian branch associated with the Church of Scotland best I can tell. Are you a member of that branch or the other Presbyterians Walt refers to when he writes

      “Even our modern Presbyterian churches lack and reject their biblical and apostolic tradition. Instead, they hold individuals up as the independents do and reject the body of elders and presbyters who gave us the truth in confessions, creeds, etc. Like true independents and Roman catholics and Anglicans they reject true biblical church government and accept oral tradition of men over the inspired tradition of God”

      1. ” really Kevin, church is just a metaphor for the body of Christ” yes. Did he say the Corinthian church, Roman church, Jerusalem church, church in Thessaloniki, Philippi. No. He said church. I believe in visible churches. But Paul addressed the church as a metaphor for the body of Christ. ” and upon this rock I will build my church” I believe over 65% of the church fathers believed this was the confession of Peter. Walt has proved this to you. ” but Christ owns a church” Timothy P, the church isn’t the same as Jesus in the world. Churches don’t connect men to God. He comes to them in the gospel by his choosing. Sometimes that’s in the church, sometimes outside. Jesus said the Spirit blows like the wind, where and when He wills. ” are you a member of that branch” no, I attend a Presbyterian PCA. But I consider Walt my brother in the gospel.

  27. Timothy P wrote:

    “Now Walt, to which church did Irenaeus say that all the other churches must agree????????.”

    To be clear he said they must agree with the apostolic church and doctrine which was founded by Christ and the Triune God in scripture. It was not founded on the testimony of Peter or and mere man.

    Further, we believe in national churches called establishmentarianism. We have no problem with a national Italian church of Jesus Christ similar to that of the national Church of Scotland run by a body of ministers, bishops or elders and doctors (some called). There is no central pope, no cardinals, no arch bishops, no priests.

    If irenaeus says the following and he means that everything is founded upon Peter as the pope and the succession of Popes after Peter than he is in error.

    “[I]t is incumbent to obey the presbyters who are in the Church—those who, as I have shown, possess the succession from the apostles; those who, together with the succession of the episcopate, have received the infallible charism of truth, according to the good pleasure of the Father.”

    If he is referring to a national church in Rome run by presbyters than it is fine.

  28. Correction on what I wrote: “Further, we believe in national churches called establishmentarianism.”

    This is not accurate. It sounds like I’m saying their is a blending of church and state as one Christian government. I should have said Presbyterians believe in national Christian churches and civil magistry called establishmentarianism. This is different than erastianism where the civil government or state dominates or controls the church. Presbyterianism is the church side of Christ’s government and establishmentarianism is the civil side of Christ’s government.

  29. Kevin” show me where Basil denied oral tradition.” You really do have to change the narrative on Basil don’t you Timothy P., because Basil didn’t even give some anonymous oral tradition consideration. Basil says scripture is the determiner on doctrines. He is definitive in his statement. And since you agree with Him ,you say, then according to Basil we must look in the scriptures for doctrines. And unfortunately for you Rome’s novel doctrines can’t be proved from scripture.

    1. Kevin, I wanted to follow up with your denial that Basil believed in both an authoritative written and oral tradition.
      Basil wrote on his discussion of the Holy Spirit

      “But all the apparatus of war has been got ready against us; every intellectual missile is aimed at us; and now blasphemers’ tongues shoot and hit and hit again, yet harder than Stephen of old was smitten by the killers of the Christ. And do not let them succeed in concealing the fact that, while an attack on us serves for a pretext for the war, the real aim of these proceedings is higher. It is against us, they say, that they are preparing their engines and their snares; against us that they are shouting to one another, according to each one’s strength or cunning, to come on. But the object of attack is faith. The one aim of the whole band of opponents and enemies of “sound doctrine” 1 Timothy 1:10 is to shake down the foundation of the faith of Christ by levelling apostolic tradition with the ground, and utterly destroying it. So like the debtors,— of course bona fide debtors— they clamour for written proof, and reject as worthless the unwritten tradition of the Fathers. But we will not slacken in our defence of the truth. We will not cowardly abandon the cause. The Lord has delivered to us as a necessary and saving doctrine that the Holy Spirit is to be ranked with the Father”

      Basil’s enemies reject as “worthless the unwritten tradition on the Fathers”. And who handed down this tradition “that the Holy Spirit is to be ranked with the Father” THE LORD!!!!!.
      What is interesting about the authoritative oral tradition in the early church is none of the Fathers explicitly deny the existence of this authoritative tradition. Similarly none of the Father’s ever explicitly denies belief in the real presence. Interesting!

      1. Kevin, you might want to address this quote also from Basil

        “71. In answer to the objection that the doxology in the form “with the Spirit” has no written authority, we maintain that if there is no other instance of that which is unwritten, then this must not be received. But if the greater number of our mysteries are admitted into our constitution without written authority, then, in company with the many others, let us receive this one. For I hold it apostolic to abide also by the unwritten traditions. “I praise you,” it is said, “that you remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances as I delivered them to you;” 1 Corinthians 11:2 and “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our Epistle.” 2 Thessalonians 2:15 One of these traditions is the practice which is now before us, which they who ordained from the beginning, rooted firmly in the churches, delivering it to their successors, and its use through long custom advances pace by pace with time. If, as in a Court of Law, we were at a loss for documentary evidence, but were able to bring before you a large number of witnesses, would you not give your vote for our acquittal? I think so; for “at the mouth of two or three witnesses shall the matter be established.” Deuteronomy 19:15 And if we could prove clearly to you that a long period of time was in our favour, should we not have seemed to you to urge with reason that this suit ought not to be brought into court against us? For ancient dogmas inspire a certain sense of awe, venerable as they are with a hoary antiquity. I will therefore give you a list of the supporters of the word (and the time too must be taken into account in relation to what passes unquestioned). For it did not originate with us. How could it?”

        Now Kevin I asked you before to show where Basil denied an authoritative oral tradition. We all agree that the written tradition is authoritative. but as Basil points out the written tradition tells us “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our Epistle “

      2. Timothy P, you can’t come here and cut and paste quotes from early church bishops and then use them to prove Roman Catholic tradition. Here Basil says that the enemies were enemies of the faith and sound doctrine. Well frankly, that’s the claim we make about Roman Catholic religion. I’m guessing Basil is talking about Arianism here, but I’m not sure because I haven’t seen the quote in context. What Tim K has done at Out of His mouth is dealt with the doctrines of the Roman Catholic religion by helping us understand how they stand in stark contrast to the scripture and early church. Helping us to understand the early fathers in context and juxtaposing it against the doctrines of your synagogue has clarified even more how novel, evil, and false those doctrines are. But you refuse to see the truths that have been put forward to you. Basil directly say let the written scripture decide between us. I agree with Basil. Iow, don’t bring in your trinkets in the name of some oral tradition outside the word of God. And that’s the onus you have, defending what Newman called convienently ” development of doctrine” This was the reason for the reformation, to get back to the word of God. And what I’m learning is since the 4th century this reform was existent. Why? Because the fulfilment of the visible apostasy had arisen from within the church and it persecuted true believers and the true church. Make no mistake Timothy P you defend a religion that not only sold the merits of Christ, but that is the greatest enemy of Christ’s church ever. K

        1. Kevin, you say

          “Timothy P, you can’t come here and cut and paste quotes from early church bishops and then use them to prove Roman Catholic tradition”

          Of course I can Kevin and I just did it. Or should I say Basil did it. Basil wrote

          “71. In answer to the objection that the doxology in the form “with the Spirit” has no written authority, we maintain that if there is no other instance of that which is unwritten, then this must not be received. But if the greater number of our mysteries are admitted into our constitution without written authority, then, in company with the many others, let us receive this one. For I hold it apostolic to abide also by the unwritten traditions. “I praise you,” it is said, “that you remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances as I delivered them to you;” 1 Corinthians 11:2 and “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our Epistle.” 2 Thessalonians 2:15 ”

          Kevin, Basil is quoting the same verse Catholics point to to support an authoritative oral tradition. Now do you agree with the above verse or not. Kevin you wrote

          “Let’s just be frank, Basil wasn’t a Papist.”

          Obviously Kevin you and Basil do not agree when it comes to oral tradition. Please explain. Oh by the way Kevin you wrote

          “I speak fluent Italian which is a Latin language . The word for agree is accordare. The word convenire means to meet with or come together.”

          Now Kevin, I have always said we need to look at all the evidence so can you give me all the meanings of the word convenire in the Italian language. Is Italian like English and I assume most languages where a word can have multiple meanings?

          1. Do I hold fast to 2 Thessalonians 2:15. Yes of course, Paul taught it. But this doesn’t help you. The verse says traditions which you HAVE BEEN taught. Its past tense. Nothing about any additional oral tradition. Now, after I provide a very clear quote from Basil that says the written word is the decider of doctrines, you turn around and want to convince me that no he really means its the Roman Catholic tradition that will decide . I don’t buy that logic. When we apply Basil’s admonition to your tradition, we find your doctrines outside of scripture. I’m thankful for the words of Basil that the scriptures will decide. Seems like that is the Reformed view. We say reformed and always being reformed. Everything is always in the light of the Spirit teaching in the scriptures. Any claim to tradition must pass through what Basil said was true tradition, the written word. And the history of you church has been to keep the written word out of the hands of the people. Wonder why? Your minions chased down William Tyndale and killed him for the crime of translating the bible into English. The articles here have proven to me that any claim of the Roman Catholic church before the 4th century has no evidence. None.

          2. Sorry Kevin but you can’t dismiss Basil’s comments by trying to say that Paul was referring to oral tradition which “HAVE BEEN taught”. You have to come up with some plausible reason why Basil cited this verse to combat his enemies who rejected as

            “worthless the unwritten tradition on the Fathers”

            So Kevin, let’s hear a plausible reason why Basil cited this verse? Look at the statement before he quotes 2 Thessalonians 2:15.

            “71. In answer to the objection that the doxology in the form “with the Spirit” has no written authority, we maintain that if there is no other instance of that which is unwritten, then this must not be received. But if the greater number of our mysteries are admitted into our constitution without written authority, then, in company with the many others, let us receive this one. For I hold it apostolic to abide also by the unwritten traditions.

            Kevin, “FOR I HOLD IT APOSTOLIC TO ABIDE ALSO BY THE UNWRITTEN TRADTIONS”
            Kevin, do you hold it “APOSTOLIC TO ABIDE ALSO BY THE UNWRITTEN TRADTIONS?

  30. Timothy K, in the passage on the Roman Church from Irenaeus you wrote

    “In other words, we have no evidence that Irenæus said “agree” (the Latin word here is “convenire,” which means literaly, “to meet with” or “to come together”, not “to agree with”)”

    Now I am looking for a translation that translates the word “convenire” the way you wish to translate it in that passage and so far I have not been able to find it. Maybe you could help me. The passage from the Catholic apologist you quoted seems to translate the word as “resort” which sounds closer to “agree” to me then “to meet with” or “to come together”. I know you have admitted you are not an expert on early languages but maybe you can point out a translation that fits your agenda. I’ll post what I can find.

    1. From the website Early Christian Writings

      2. Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say, ] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its pre- eminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the apostolical tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.

      1. From the blog East to West

        Sed quoniam ualde longum est in hoc tali uolumine omnium Ecclesiarum enumerare successions, maximae et antiquissimae et omnibus cognitae, a gloriosissimis duobus apostolis Petro et Paulo Romae fundate et constitutae Ecclesiae, eam quam habet ab apostolis traditionem et adnuntiatem hominibus fidem per successions episcoporum peruenientem usque ad nos indicantes, confundimus omnes eos qui quoquo modo uel per sibiplacentiam uel uanam gloriam uel per caecitatem et sententiam malam, praeterquam oportet colligunt: ad hanc enim Ecclesiam propter potentiorem principalitatem necesse est omnem conuenire Ecclesiam, hoc est eos qui sunt undique fideles, in qua semper ab his qui sunt undique conseruata est ea quae est ab apostolis traditio. (Adv. Haer. 3.3.2.)

        ‘Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successors of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every church should agree with this church, on account of its pre-eminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the apostolical tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere’ (3.2), W.H. Rambaut, trans., The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol.1, pp. 415-16.

      1. Kevin, maybe you could help Timothy K find someone who translates convenire in this passage the way you guys would like since I have not been able to. I ‘m not saying it doesn’t exist, I just have not been able to find it. I try to keep an open mind. So let’s make the substitution that you have proposed and see what we get

        “‘Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successors of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every church should “MEET WITH” this church, on account of its pre-eminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the apostolical tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere’

        Hmmmm, maybe you can now see the problem of not reading the word in context. Irenaeus is talking about “the tradition derived from the apostles” and “the faith preached to men”. You “AGREE” with this tradition and faith, you don’t “MEET WITH” with this tradition and faith. And where is this “tradition derived from the apostles” and “the faith preached to men ” found? In the Roman Church “on account of its pre-eminent authority”
        So we have “RESORT” to the tradition and faith taught by the pre-eminent authority, we have “AGREE” to the tradition and faith taught by the pre-eminent authority and your interpretation “MEET WITH” the tradition and faith taught by the pre-eminent authority.

        I’ll keep looking for the translation of that paragraph that supports your position , but I think before you guys claim a bad translation you should have read the paragraph more carefully, and substituted your “correction” to see if it made sense.

        I will get back to the Easter controversy but Kevin is the date of celebration of Easter a dogma or a doctrine in your opinion?

        1. Actually, Timothy P, “meet with” makes perfect sense here. On account of the city’s position of influence in the empire, it was important for the churches on every side to meet with the church there to correct her, corral her, rebuke, warn, restrain and resist her nonsense, which, in the first three centuries of Christianity, the churches on every side often did—and Irenæus’s church was among them.

          You wrote,

          “…but I think before you guys claim a bad translation you should have read the paragraph more carefully, and substituted your “correction” to see if it made sense.”

          I am not the first to claim a bad translation (as the editor of Schaff’s Ante-Nicene Fathers demonstrates), but as even one Roman Catholic translator suggests, “agree” was not the ideal rendering, but “resort” was, and they resorted there so that the churches on every side could keep Rome in line. “Resort” does not carry the implications of meeting with someone for the purpose of mandatory concurrence, but simply to meet with someone for some purpose. That purpose, as history has shown, has been to meet with the church at Rome for the purpose of correction and rebuke, as was often the case.

          But none of this matters if you cannot grasp that even the experts acknowledge that your proof text is impossible to translate with certainty, and therefore the passage does not settle the matter—especially since the translation upon which you rely is so divorced from reality. For you simply to cut and paste without examining the data is just “drive by” apologetics without substance.

          Thanks,

          Tim

          1. Timothy K, tied up with grandchildren this weekend but thought I should post Irenaeus writings in the verses under question so we can assess your comment . Context is such a wonderful thing. Timothy K wrote

            “Actually, Timothy P, “meet with” makes perfect sense here. On account of the city’s position of influence in the empire, it was important for the churches on every side to meet with the church there to correct her, corral her, rebuke, warn, restrain and resist her nonsense, which, in the first three centuries of Christianity, the churches on every side often did—and Irenæus’s church was among them.”

            Irenaeus
            A refutation of the heretics, from the fact that, in the various Churches, a perpetual succession of bishops was kept up.
            1. It is within the power of all, therefore, in every Church, who may wish to see the truth, to contemplate clearly the tradition of the apostles manifested throughout the whole world; and we are in a position to reckon up those who were by the apostles instituted bishops in the Churches, and [to demonstrate] the succession of these men to our own times; those who neither taught nor knew of anything like what these [heretics] rave about. For if the apostles had known hidden mysteries, which they were in the habit of imparting to “the perfect” apart and privily from the rest, they would have delivered them especially to those to whom they were also committing the Churches themselves. For they were desirous that these men should be very perfect and blameless in all things, whom also they were leaving behind as their successors, delivering up their own place of government to these men; which men, if they discharged their functions honestly, would be a great boon [to the Church], but if they should fall away, the direst calamity.

            2. Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its preeminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.

            3. The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to Timothy. To him succeeded Anacletus; and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric. This man, as he had seen the blessed apostles, and had been conversant with them, might be said to have the preaching of the apostles still echoing [in his ears], and their traditions before his eyes. Nor was he alone [in this], for there were many still remaining who had received instructions from the apostles. In the time of this Clement, no small dissension having occurred among the brethren at Corinth, the Church in Rome dispatched a most powerful letter to the Corinthians, exhorting them to peace, renewing their faith, and declaring the tradition which it had lately received from the apostles, proclaiming the one God, omnipotent, the Maker of heaven and earth, the Creator of man, who brought on the deluge, and called Abraham, who led the people from the land of Egypt, spoke with Moses, set forth the law, sent the prophets, and who has prepared fire for the devil and his angels. From this document, whosoever chooses to do so, may learn that He, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, was preached by the Churches, and may also understand the tradition of the Church, since this Epistle is of older date than these men who are now propagating falsehood, and who conjure into existence another god beyond the Creator and the Maker of all existing things. To this Clement there succeeded Evaristus. Alexander followed Evaristus; then, sixth from the apostles, Sixtus was appointed; after him, Telephorus, who was gloriously martyred; then Hyginus; after him, Pius; then after him, Anicetus. Soter having succeeded Anicetus, Eleutherius does now, in the twelfth place from the apostles, hold the inheritance of the episcopate. In this order, and by this succession, the ecclesiastical tradition from the apostles, and the preaching of the truth, have come down to us. And this is most abundant proof that there is one and the same vivifying faith, which has been preserved in the Church from the apostles until now, and handed down in truth.

            4. But Polycarp also was not only instructed by apostles, and conversed with many who had seen Christ, but was also, by apostles in Asia, appointed bishop of the Church in Smyrna, whom I also saw in my early youth, for he tarried [on earth] a very long time, and, when a very old man, gloriously and most nobly suffering martyrdom, departed this life, having always taught the things which he had learned from the apostles, and which the Church has handed down, and which alone are true. To these things all the Asiatic Churches testify, as do also those men who have succeeded Polycarp down to the present time,— a man who was of much greater weight, and a more steadfast witness of truth, than Valentinus, and Marcion, and the rest of the heretics. He it was who, coming to Rome in the time of Anicetus caused many to turn away from the aforesaid heretics to the Church of God, proclaiming that he had received this one and sole truth from the apostles—that, namely, which is handed down by the Church. There are also those who heard from him that John, the disciple of the Lord, going to bathe at Ephesus, and perceiving Cerinthus within, rushed out of the bath-house without bathing, exclaiming, “Let us fly, lest even the bath-house fall down, because Cerinthus, the enemy of the truth, is within.” And Polycarp himself replied to Marcion, who met him on one occasion, and said, “Do you know me?” “I do know you, the first-born of Satan.” Such was the horror which the apostles and their disciples had against holding even verbal communication with any corrupters of the truth; as Paul also says, “A man that is an heretic, after the first and second admonition, reject; knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sins, being condemned of himself.” Titus 3:10 There is also a very powerful Epistle of Polycarp written to the Philippians, from which those who choose to do so, and are anxious about their salvation, can learn the character of his faith, and the preaching of the truth. Then, again, the Church in Ephesus, founded by Paul, and having John remaining among them permanently until the times of Trajan, is a true witness of the tradition of the apostles.

            About this page

            Source. Translated by Alexander Roberts and William Rambaut. From Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 1.

          2. Thank you, Timothy P. You have demonstrated once again that your only mode of apologetic is to paste a text as if by the sheer repetition of it you could persuade your opponent that Irenæus’ words must mean what you have assumed them to mean. And yet we know for a fact that Irenæaus did not believe that all churches must agree with Rome, for it is known that his own church and all the churches of Gaul disagreed with the church at Rome, and further that he rebuked “the pope” for cutting off the Asian churches, whose only offense was that they had disagreed with Rome.

            And yet, because it is all you have, you attempt to press your case on the alleged words of Irenæus that “it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church,” knowing full well (for surely you know by now!) that Irenæus did not actually believe that to be true.

            What is more, I have provided to you a Roman Catholic apologist’s understanding of this section of Against Heresies in which he takes it to mean that the tradition of the Apostles has been preserved in Rome, not by the church in that city, but instead “by the churches on every side” of her—that is, by the surrounding churches. That is not a Protestant spin on a passage but the earnest attempt of a Roman Catholic to understand what Irenæus was actually saying in a section of his works that is exceedingly difficult to translate. And yet that Roman Catholic writer’s take on it is hardly beyond the realm of possibility, for Irenæus himself from the distant reaches of Gaul, had taken upon himself in Against Heresies the monumental task of refuting the heresies of a Roman heretic in order to assist the faithful in that city. Why, Timothy P, would it even be necessary for the churches of Gaul to resort to Rome to refute the heresies there if the apostolic religion was already being preserved there by the church in Rome?

            Further, as I have already showed you, the passage you have provided is an english rendering of a barbaric latin translation of a lost greek original, the translation of which is known to be but guesswork—so sayeth the very experts upon whom you rely for your argument “from context.” Yes context is a wonderful thing, but the problem is, all you have provided is a guess as to what that context might be, without dealing with the historical record that shows that Irenæus himself did not agree with your interpretation of Irenæus.

            Now if only you would apply this same method to Irenæus’ comments on the Incarnation—a section of his works for which the greek is not lacking—and recite the works in order, and in context, instead of simply jumbling them together, mixing up their order and then pasting them as if they were “Irenæus’ comments on the Real Presence.”

            In any case, your attempt to extract Roman primacy from Irenæus reminds me of Newman’s famous quip—”To be deep in history is to cease to be Protestant”—which is but a pious, but convenient fiction for those who seek salvation in a religion that cannot help them and does not originate with the apostles. Its inverse actually the truth: “To be Roman Catholic is to cease to be deep in history.”

            Enjoy your studies,

            Tim

    2. Timothy P, you do not need the experts to tell you what “convenire” means. Latin is a dead language. Its nuances do not change with time any more. A schoolboy of 10 years of age can show you that the word is constructed from two Latin roots, con- (“with, together”) and‎ veniō (“come”), as in “come together.” With no effort at all you can find the original Latin word in the text, and with only modest additional effort you can think through what it means. Yet you refuse to do so.

      To aid you in your studies, I provide you with this additional information for consideration. The translators acknowledge that their translation of Irenæus at some points in Against Heresies is just guesswork:

      “After the [Latin] text has been settled, according to the best judgment which can be formed, the work of translation remains; and that is, in this case, a matter of no small difficulty. Irenæus, even in the original Greek, is often a very obscure writer. At times he expresses himself with remarkable clearness and terseness; but, upon the whole, his style is very involved and prolix. And the Latin version adds to these difficulties of the original, by being itself of the most barbarous character. … We have endeavoured to give as close and accurate a translation of the work as possible, but there are not a few passages in which a guess can only be made as to the probable meaning.” (Schaff, Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. I, Introductory Note to Irenæus Against Heresies)

      Here is the footnote by the translator, with an additional comment by the editor [in brackets]:

      “The Latin text of this difficult but important clause is, “Ad hanc enim ecclesiam propter potiorem principalitatem necesse est omnem convenire ecclesiam.” Both the text and meaning have here given rise to much discussion. It is impossible to say with certainty of what words in the Greek original “potiorem principalitatem” may be the translation. We are far from sure that the rendering given above is correct, but we have been unable to think of anything better. [A most extraordinary confession. It would be hard to find a worse; but take the following from a candid Roman Catholic, which is better and more literal: “For to this Church, on account of more potent principality, it is necessary that every Church (that is, those who are on every side faithful) resort; in which Church ever, by those who are on every side, has been preserved that tradition which is from the apostles.” (Berington and Kirk, vol. i. p. 252.) Here it is obvious that the faith was kept at Rome, by those who resort there from all quarters. She was a mirror of the Catholic World, owing here orthodoxy to them; not the Sun, dispensing her own light to others, but the glass bringing their rays into a focus. See note at end of book iii.] A discussion of the subject may be seen in chap. xii. of Dr. Wordsworth’s St. Hippolytus and the Church of Rome.” (Schaff, Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume I, Against Heresies, Book III, ch. 3, n. 3313).

      So lets take stock, Timothy P. “Agree” is not the meaning of “convenire,” and using “agree” in an English translation backloads a Roman Catholic agenda into a text that even your experts agree is impossible to translate with certainty. In addition to the problems with the questionable English translation, there remains the fact that it is based on a “barbaric Latin translation” of a lost Greek original. In other words we have no idea what Irenæus actually said here, and the “experts” acknowledge that it is just guesswork. And other more reliable data shows not only that Irenæus himself disagreed openly and emphatically with the church at Rome, but also that he lauded the behavior of Anicetus and Polycarp in their celebration of the eucharist even though Polycarp was not in agreement, and could not be made to agree with, the “pope.”

      This is your “evidence” for Roman Primacy? And all you can do in response to the actual evidence is find people who translate “convenire” as “agree” and think that the matter is settled?

      This is why I implore you to study matters with more care instead of simply cutting and pasting questionable texts and even more questionable scholarship, thinking that the mere pasting of acknowledged guesswork establishes your case.

      Thanks,

      Tim

  31. The more I look Timothy K it appears most of the websites are using the same translation. I even looked at the Calvin Institute Website. Maybe you could come up with one that supports your translation , ie “to meet with” or “come together”.
    Too late to discuss the Easter controversy but I had this discussion with Brian Culliton before and have a few points to bring up. Interesting that at that period no one is debating the orthodox views of the Catholic church but they are arguing over when Easter should be celebrated. Why do you think that is?

    1. Timothy P, you wrote,

      “Interesting that at that period no one is debating the orthodox views of the Catholic church but they are arguing over when Easter should be celebrated.”

      A remarkable claim. The bishop of Rome “at that period” was affirming the Montanist heresy, and only under pressure from a Monarchian heretic was he compelled to withdraw his support of the Montanist heresy.

      “For after the Bishop of Rome had acknowledged the prophetic gifts of Montanus, Prisca, and Maximilla, and, in consequence of the acknowledgment, had bestowed his peace on the churches of Asia and Phrygia, he, by importunately urging false accusations against the prophets themselves and their churches, and insisting on the authority of the bishop’s predecessors in the see, compelled him to recall the pacific letter which he had issued, as well as to desist from his purpose of acknowledging the said gifts.” (Tertullian, Against Praxeas, chapter 1)

      Yes, except for the fact that the “pope” himself was advancing the Montanist heresy, but was convinced by another heretic to withdraw his support for the Montantist heresy, “no one [was] debating the orthodox views of the Catholic church.”

      Thanks,

      Tim

  32. Timothy P ” interesting that at that period no one is debating the orthodox views of the Catholic church but they are arguing over when easter should be celebrated” this statement really shows that you really have not looked at the evidence and pattern of the Roman church early on and its popes/ bishops propensity for petulance and straying from orthodox doctrine for which they had to be rebuked by other bishops on many occasions . Its all here Timothy P. In my opinion the most comprehensive documentation of the lies, power, and deception upon which this front for the kingdom of Satan was built. Have at it. Every article is documented and fascinating. I think if you take off your Roman glasses and are willing to look at these facts, you may come to a different position.

  33. Elutherus and Victor were sympathetic to the Montanist movement. Wikipedia describes it as ” new prophecies and ecstasies” saying some compare it to modern day Pentecostalism and Charistmaticism. Isn’t that interesting. The modern day Roman church swallowing the charismatics and Pentacostals hook line and sinker. Truly a leopard doesn’t shed it’s spots. Timothy P, I hope you are reading this current series Come hell or high water, because it adds to the constant thread through history about the Roman Catholic church and its penchant pattern to wade into error and false doctrine. Amazing.

  34. Timothy K says to Timothy P:

    “In addition to the problems with the questionable English translation, there remains the fact that it is based on a “barbaric Latin translation” of a lost Greek original. In other words we have no idea what Irenæus actually said here, and the “experts” acknowledge that it is just guesswork. And other more reliable data shows not only that Irenæus himself disagreed openly and emphatically with the church at Rome, but also that he lauded the behavior of Anicetus and Polycarp in their celebration of the eucharist even though Polycarp was not in agreement, and could not be made to agree with, the “pope.””

    That settles it for certain. Imagine for one minute what Timothy P is saying. Totally ignoring Scripture as our foundation of all truth, he uses an English translation of a Latin translation of a Greek original document to build the entire Roman Catholic religion upon as settled. When I get back to America I’m going to find this quote, copy the page and highlight it in yellow and frame it in my office for all to witness. The entire Roman Catholic church papal government is based upon a translation of a translation of a lost original.

    Incredible news.

    1. Walt , what is incredible is your comment

      “The entire Roman Catholic church papal government is based upon a translation of a translation of a lost original.”

      So the “entire Roman Catholic church papal government” is based on the writings of a single church Father. That is incredible and blatantly untrue. Reminds me of your comment on Matthew 16 when after posting some Protestant commentaries you claimed victory and then refused to answer my question how many times was Peter’s primacy displayed in the last chapter of John’s gospel. Now most people have the common sense to want to look at all the evidence and arguments before making a judgment .
      Now it might be helpful if you could find a translation of Irenaeus’s comments that agree with Timothy K’s contention the Irenaeus meant to “meet with” the Church of Rome instead of to “agree with” the Church of Rome”. And maybe you could help Kevin with the question is the date Easter is celebrated a dogma or a doctrine?. And by the way Walt how do you know you have a “barbaric Latin translation” if the original Greek is lost? You do know don’t you that the word barbaric is not synonymous with the word incorrect don’t you? And while we follow this line of reasoning , could you tell me which Bible translation out today is an infallible translation since we have the original Greek Texts? Are you one of the “King James Only” followers?

      1. Timothy P said:

        “So the “entire Roman Catholic church papal government” is based on the writings of a single church Father. That is incredible and blatantly untrue. Reminds me of your comment on Matthew 16 when after posting some Protestant commentaries you claimed victory and then refused to answer my question how many times was Peter’s primacy displayed in the last chapter of John’s gospel.”

        Yes, I was shocked as well to see how the entire Roman Catholic church was based upon one translation of a translation of a lost original. As I read your quotes to support the Roman Catholic system, it was very clear that Irenaeus was clearly showing Presbyterianism as the fundamental Apostolic, biblical church government. They you take just one sentence out of all his writings and argue he really means all churches are to honor Rome. Silly and so unfortunately confused as to take his comments out of context when we know Presbyterianism is the only true church government by divine right.

        1. Timothy P says:

          “…and then refused to answer my question how many times was Peter’s primacy displayed in the last chapter of John’s gospel.”

          By the way, there are a lot of detailed and excellent videos that I posted in response to your church teaching that Peter was given primacy in John gospel. You would have to actually watch them for them to be effective in teaching you what Scripture teaches in context on this claim that Peter was the first Pope by using the proof text in last chapter of John’s gospel. The best video yet I’ve seen who dismantles all the Roman Catholic claims on the question of whether Peter was the first Pope is here:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9aJpXC1hjF4

          That young man does an incredible job using Scripture alone to refutes all your church teachings, and your claim that you have proof in John’s gospel. You can be confident that my position against your claims are the same as made in the video. Point by point I’m in agreement with his work on this subject using Scripture.

        2. Walt, why am I not surprised. I asked you six questions and you did not attempt to answer a single one. Now if they were difficult questions I guess I would understand your reluctance to respond but they really aren’t. For example , is the date of Easter celebration a doctrine or a dogma? Is that really that difficult? Now I’ll be glad to look at some of the videos you are recommending but the last time I spent looking at James White’s video on John 6 I asked if anyone could guess what Mr White concluded was the reason for the disciples leaving Christ. So read John 6, write down why you believe the disciples left Jesus and then watch the video and see if you agree with Mr. White.

          Walt writes

          “They you take just one sentence out of all his writings and argue he really means all churches are to honor Rome. Silly and so unfortunately confused as to take his comments out of context when we know Presbyterianism is the only true church government by divine right.”

          One sentence Walt? I really can’t win can I. I just copied the entire passage for Timothy K for the express purpose of showing that his translation “to meet with” does not fit with the surrounding passages and you accuse me of taking just “one sentence”. Did I provide you with just “one sentence. In fact the point I am going to make with Timothy K is that even if you eliminate that sentence you still have to deal with Irenaeus refuting the heretics by looking at the teachings handed down in the apostolic churches. And which Church does Irenaeus point to first
          ” of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul”
          Now I am sure the reason Irenaeus pointed to that Church first wasn’t because it had preeminent authority was it?

          1. Timothy P, you wrote,

            “In fact the point I am going to make with Timothy K is that even if you eliminate that sentence you still have to deal with Irenaeus refuting the heretics by looking at the teachings handed down in the apostolic churches.”

            Yes, precisely. In the apostolic churches. Against Heresies was written to refute a Roman heresy, formed and nurtured in Rome, and so he appeals to the Roman church from which Valentinius had in fact separated. Irenæus refutes the heretics by appealing to the teachings handed down in the apostolic churches. And he says that although he could “reckon up the successions of all the Churches,” he opts to single out Rome. It is, after all, the church from which Valentinius broke off. A little context goes a long way.

            You then asked,

            “And which Church does Irenaeus point to first”

            He points to Rome—the one Valentinius left, and the one nearest to where Valentinius’ heresy originated. You continued,

            “Now I am sure the reason Irenaeus pointed to that Church first wasn’t because it had preeminent authority was it?”

            Well, actually, no you are not sure at all. Why? Because the translators don’t even know. As I showed you earlier, the translator wrote that it is impossible to determine what Irenæus said or meant here:

            “It is impossible to say with certainty of what words in the Greek original “potiorem principalitatem” may be the translation. We are far from sure that the rendering given above is correct…” (Schaff, Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume I, Against Heresies, Book III, ch. 3, n. 3313).

            What is more, Tertullian, when making the case of apostolic succession, listed Smyrna first, not Rome:

            “For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed.” (Tertullian, Prescription Against Heretics, chapter 32).

            Do you believe that Tertullian thought the church at Smyrna was preeminent? He did, after all, list it first. And why list it first if it is not preeminent?

            What is more, after Irenæus has identified Rome, he relates this of Polycarp in Smryna:

            “…But Polycarp also was not only instructed by apostles, … appointed bishop of the Church in Smyrna, … departed this life, having always taught the things which he had learned from the apostles, and which the Church has handed down, and which alone are true.”

            Do you agree that Irenæus believed that the teachings of the Church of Smyrna “alone are true”? I mean, he said so, right? But he went on and said that Polycarp “had received this one and sole truth from the apostles” and that Polycarp had to come to Rome to set things right in the days of “Pope” Anicetus. Why would Polycarp need to come to Rome to correct heretics if “pope” Anicetus was already there correcting heretics? Shouldn’t Polycarp have come to Rome to receive apostolic teaching instead of coming to Rome to help the bishop there preserve it?

            Do you notice a pattern? Irenæus comes to Rome from Gaul to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under the eye of “pope” Eleutherius. Polycarp comes to Rome from Asia to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under “pope” Anicetus.

            It’s a good thing the churches on every side came to Rome to keep her in line with the truth of the apostles!

            You might even say that was Irenæus’ whole point in this section of his work. The context certainly suggests as much.

            Tim

      2. ” And maybe you can help Kevin with the question is the dare for Easter is celebrated a dogma or a doctrine. ” I have no idea what you are talking about. I have made no comment on Easter. My salvation doesn’t depend on when Easter is celevrated, or whether it is a doctrine or a dogma. Furthermore, my salvation is determined by my merit, whether from celibacy or pilgrimages. My salvation rests on His life alone, who is the propitiation alone for my sins, and my righteousness. My righteousness isn’t derived from His, it is His righteousness.

  35. “George Gillespie, one of the Scottish Commissioners to the Westminster Assembly, and one of the greatest theologians since the days of the Apostles, writes,

    “By communicating with idolaters in their rites and ceremonies, we ourselves become guilty of idolatry; even as Ahaz, 2 Kings 16:10, was an idolater, eo ipso, that he took the pattern of an altar from idolaters. Forasmuch, then, as kneeling before the consecrated bread, the sign of the cross, surplice, festival days (like Christmas-ed.), bishopping, bowing down to the altar, administration of the sacraments in private places, etc., are the wares of Rome, the baggage of Babylon, the trinkets of the whore, the badges of Popery, the ensigns of Christ’s enemies, and the very trophies of antichrist, — we cannot conform, communicate and symbolise with the idolatrous Papists in the use of the same, without making ourselves idolaters by participation.”

    Shall the chaste spouse of Christ take upon her the ornaments of the whore? Shall the Israel of God symbolise with her who is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt? Shall the Lord’s redeemed people wear the ensigns of their captivity? Shall the saints be seen with the mark of the beast? Shall the Christian church be like the antichristian, the holy like the profane, religion like superstition, the temple of God like the synagogue of Satan?” (A Dispute Against English Popish Ceremonies, in Gillespie’s Works volume one, p. 80, SWRB reprint, or as free MP3s at A Dispute Against the English Popish Ceremonies emphases added).

    http://www.puritandownloads.com/a-dispute-against-the-english-popish-ceremonies-obtruded-on-the-church-of-scotland-1637-reprinted-from-the-1660-edition-by-george-gillespie/

    “George Gillespie was one of the Scottish commissioners to the Westminster Assembly, the youngest member there, and undoubtedly one of the most influential.

    William Hetherington observes “The effect produced by this singularly able work may be conjectured from the fact that within a few months of its publication, a proclamation was issued by the Privy Council, at the instigation of the Bishops, commanding that all copies of the book that could be found be called in and burned by the hangman. Such was the only answer that all the learned Scottish Prelates could give to a treatise written by a youth who was only in his twenty-fifth year when it appeared” (“Memoir,” from the Works of George Gillespie, p. xviii.).

    James Bannerman writes, “This was Gillespie’s first work, and it may be truly said to have settled the controversy which called it forth, so far as argument was concerned. No answer to it was ever attempted by the Prelatic party; and no answer was possible. It displays singular acuteness, learning, and force of reasoning; and the thoroughness of the discussion is as remarkable as the power with which it is conducted” (The Church of Christ, vol. 2., p. 435).

    Possibly the best uninspired book ever written on biblical worship, an extensive and thorough masterpiece that leaves no stone unturned. For the advanced study of just about everything related to biblical worship.”

  36. The Declinatour and Protestation of the Some Some-times Pretended Bishops, Presented in the Face of the Last Assembly. Refuted and Found Futile, But Full of Insolent Reproaches, and Bold Assertions (1639)

    An exceedingly rare title marking the continuing rise, at a critical juncture, of the covenanted Reformed Presbyterian church.

    Members of this General Assembly and signatories to this protestation include Samuel Rutherford, David Dickson, Robert Baillie and even James Sharp (who later apostatized to the camp of the Prelatical antichrist and persecuted [and murdered] the Covenanters he once owned as brothers).

    This book refutes the charges of the prelates, while exposing their many errors (which included teaching Arminianism, Popery, conditional election, the power of free-will resisting effectual grace, that the Pope is not the Antichrist, that Rome is the true church [constitutionally], that worship is not regulated by the Word of God [the regulative principle], that the earlier reformers were deformers; and denying limited atonement, justification by faith alone, predestination, and a number of other revealed truths of Scripture.)”

  37. A Letter from a Parochial Bishop to a Prelatical Gentleman in Scotland, Concerning Church Government (1714)

    “Gives “a Historical Account of the ancient Government of the Church, and Alterations made therein since the Apostles Times, with the Rise and Growth of Prelacy,” “An Account of the Worship of the Ancient Church, and the Rise of Liturgies,” “An Account of the Cyprianick Presbyters,” with “The Institution of ruling Elders proven from Scripture and Antiquity,” and much more related to the worship and government of the church.”

  38. “A History of Popery: Giving a Full Account of All the Customs of the Priests and Friars, and the Rites and Ceremonies of the Papal Church. Also, An Account of the Inquisition at Goa and Macerata, Summary of the Roman Catholic Faith, the Preservative Against Popery, Together with a History of Papacy in the United States, to the Present Time (1848)

    This book provides an antidote to all the major poisons of Popery to the author’s day — though the Romanists have since concocted additional deadly antichristian toxins with which to pollute to the church and contaminate history.

    Some of what is revealed by this former Priest, such as “the Pope’s joy at the murder of Protestants,” will no doubt shock the modern reader, but such knowledge is indispensable in the battle against this beast.

    Sections on the order of the Jesuits in the United States and contradictions in Trent (which binds Romanists to our day) will also supply ammunition to the reader, as we look forward to that blessed time announced by the heavenly voice, when “her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her” (Rev. 18:8).”

    420 pages.

  39. http://www.puritandownloads.com/search.php?search_query=popery

    Popery is a Novelty; and the Protestants’ Religion Was Not Only Before Luther, But the Same that Was Taught by Christ and His Apostles (1675, reprinted 1845) by Thomas Doolittle

    Almost 100 pages comparing numerous specific doctrines of Scripture with those of the Papacy.

    States that “(t)he reception of the old doctrine, and the rejection of the new, is that which made the Reformation: and if the church of Rome would own what is in the scripture, and no more, as necessary to salvation; and would cut off the new, which they have added to the old; we and they should be of the same religion.”

  40. Timothy K wrote:

    “Do you notice a pattern? Irenæus comes to Rome from Gaul to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under the eye of “pope” Eleutherius. Polycarp comes to Rome from Asia to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under “pope” Anicetus.”

    Now Timothy P what say you? It is not looking very good for your religion if in the early 2-4 century if all the Early Church Fathers are going to Rome to correct their “popish” heresies.

    1. Gosh Walt, I didn’t know Eleutherius became a Montanist. In fact from what I can read he eventual condemned the movement after originally tolerating it. So that’s your “Popish” heresies. And maybe you can answer the question that no one seems to want to answer, is the date of celebrating Easter a matter of doctrine or dogma? That may help clarify Polycarp’s visit.
      Oh by the way, Irenaeus the Presbyterian wrote

      1. WE have learned from none others the plan of our salvation, than from those through whom the Gospel has come down to us, which they did at one time proclaim in public, and, at a later period, by the will of God, handed down to us in the Scriptures, to be the ground and pillar of our faith.2 For it is unlawful to assert that they preached before they possessed “perfect knowledge,” as some do even venture to say, boasting themselves as improvers of the apostles. For, after our Lord rose from the dead, [the apostles] were invested with power from on high when the Holy Spirit came down [upon them], were filled from all [His gifts], and had perfect knowledge: they departed to the ends of the earth, preaching the glad tidings of the good things [sent] from God to us, and proclaiming the peace of heaven to men, who indeed do all equally and individually possess the Gospel of God. Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews3 in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome, and laying the foundations of the Church. After their departure, Mark, the disciple and interpreter of Peter, did also hand down to us in writing what had been preached by Peter. Luke also, the companion of Paul, recorded in a book the Gospel preached by him. Afterwards, John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon His breast, did himself publish a Gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia.

      Hmmmm. “While Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome”. Quite a trick to preach in a city you have never been in”.

      1. Timothy P wrote,

        “I didn’t know Eleutherius became a Montanist. In fact from what I can read he eventual condemned the movement after originally tolerating it.”

        Another dodge. Eleutherius didn’t just “tolerate” it. He endorsed it, writing letters acknowledging the error as a prophetic gift:

        “For after the Bishop of Rome had acknowledged the prophetic gifts of Montanus, Prisca, and Maximilla, and, in consequence of the acknowledgment, had bestowed his peace on the churches of Asia and Phrygia, he, by importunately urging false accusations against the prophets themselves and their churches, and insisting on the authority of the bishop’s predecessors in the see, compelled him to recall the pacific letter which he had issued, as well as to desist from his purpose of acknowledging the said gifts.” (Tertullian, Against Praxeas, chapter 1)

        Writing letters acknowledging “the prophetic gifts of Montanus” is not tolerance. It’s endorsement. If he had merely been “tolerating” it, there would have been no need to “desist from his purpose” of acknowledging the prophetic gifts of Montanus and retract the letters. Eleutherius had approved heresy, and had to be corrected for approving heresy. And it was a Monarchian heretic who persuaded him to do so.

        Tim

      2. Timothy P wrote,

        “And maybe you can answer the question that no one seems to want to answer, is the date of celebrating Easter a matter of doctrine or dogma?”

        Neither. It is a custom.

        Thanks,

        Tim

      3. Timothy P said ” oh by the way, Iranaeus the Presbyterian wrote ” the gospel has come down to us, which they did proclaim at one time in public, and at a later time, handed down to us in the scriptures, to be the ground and pillar of our faith ” this quote isn’t your friend, neither the friend of your synagogue. It says at one time it was proclaimed in public, but later ( after the apostles) it was handed down in the scriptures!, which is the ground and pillar of our faith. Notice Timothy P he doesn’t say the church is the ground and pillar, but the scriptures which were the thing handed down to us. Thanks for vindicating Iranaeus the Presbyterian! Because He wasn’t a Papist.

        1. Ah yes, Kevin. Scripture alone right? Let’s read what Irenaeus wrote about confronting the heretics with Both Scripture and Tradition.

          Chapter II.-The Heretics Follow Neither Scripture Nor Tradition.

          1. When, however, they are confuted from the Scriptures, they turn round and accuse these same Scriptures, as if they were not correct, nor of authority, and [assert] that they are ambiguous, and that the truth cannot be extracted from them by those who are ignorant of tradition. For [they allege] that the truth was not delivered by means of written documents, but vivâ voce: wherefore also Paul declared, “But we speak wisdom among those that are perfect, but not the wisdom of this world.”4 And this wisdom each one of them alleges to be the fiction of his own inventing, forsooth; so that, according to their idea, the truth properly resides at one time in Valentinus, at another in Marcion, at another in Cerinthus, then afterwards in Basilides, or has even been indifferently in any other opponent,5 who could speak nothing pertaining to salvation. For every one of these men, being altogether of a perverse disposition, depraving the system of truth, is not ashamed to preach himself.

          2. But, again, when we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles, [and] which is preserved by means of the succession of presbyters in the Churches, they object to tradition, saying that they themselves are wiser not merely than the presbyters, but even than the apostles, because they have discovered the unadulterated truth. For [they maintain] that the apostles intermingled the things of the law with the words of the Saviour; and that not the apostles alone, but even the Lord Himself, spoke as at one time from the Demiurge, at another from the intermediate place, and yet again from the Pleroma, but that they themselves, indubitably, unsulliedly, and purely, have knowledge of the hidden mystery: this is, indeed, to blaspheme their Creator after a most impudent manner! It comes to this, therefore, that these men do not consent neither to Scripture nor to tradition.”

          Did you get that Kevin, just as we Catholic do Irenaeus looks to both Scripture and Tradition to oppose the heretics. Like I keep telling Walt Kevin, you have to look at all the evidence.

          1. ” For every one of these men , being altogether of a perverse disposition, depraving a system of truth, is not ashamed to preach himself” Your popes and their religion are a poster child for this Iranaeus accusation. He continues amazingly ” when however they are confuted from the scriptures, they turn around and cause these same scriptures, as if they were not correct, nor of authority, and say they are ambiguous, and the truth cannot be extracted from them by those who are ignorant of tradition, For they allege the truth wasn’t transmitted by means of written documents” and this is essentially another accusation that could describe your popes and their religion. Iranaeus is not a friend of Roman church heresy. In fact, he was refuting it from early on. And today he would be writing a modern day against the herseies, but much longer, addressing the many errors of your church. We can only imagine what he might say about the human inventions of papal primacy, the sacrifice of the abominable mass, justification by priests, worshiping Mary, bowing to bread and wine, and worthiness of merit.

          2. Timothy P, you wrote,

            “…you have to look at all the evidence.”

            Yes, and you should have kept reading:

            In the next chapter, Irenæus defines exactly what he means by apostolic tradition that has been preserved since the apostles through the churches: the teachings of the Scriptures.

            “To which course many nations of those barbarians who believe in Christ do assent, having salvation written in their hearts by the Spirit, without paper or ink, and, carefully preserving the ancient tradition,

            believing in one God (1Co 8:6, 1 Tim 2:5),
            the Creator of heaven and earth (Ge 1:1),
            and all things therein (Col 1:16),
            by means of Christ Jesus (Col 1:16),
            the Son of God (Mr 1:1);
            who, because of His surpassing love towards His creation (Jn 3:16),
            condescended to be born of the virgin (Mt 1:23),
            He Himself uniting man through Himself to God (2Co 5:18-20),
            and having suffered under Pontius Pilate (Mr 15:15),
            and rising again (Mt 28:6),
            and having been received up in splendour (Ac 1:9),
            shall come in glory (Lu 21:27),
            the Saviour of those who are saved (Mt 1:21),
            and the Judge of those who are judged (2Ti 4:1),
            and sending into eternal fire those who transform the truth (1 Thess 2:12, 2 Peter 3:16),
            and despise His Father and His advent (Joh 5:23)

            Those who, in the absence of written documents, have believed this faith, are barbarians, so far as regards our language; but as regards doctrine, manner, and tenor of life, they are, because of faith, very wise indeed; and they do please God, ordering their conversation in all righteousness, chastity, and wisdom. If any one were to preach to these men the inventions of the heretics, speaking to them in their own language, they would at once stop their ears, and flee as far off as possible, not enduring even to listen to the blasphemous address. Thus, by means of that ancient tradition of the apostles, they do not suffer their mind to conceive anything of the [doctrines suggested by the] portentous language of these teachers, among whom neither Church nor doctrine has ever been established. (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 4.2)

            Thus, heretics are put down by means of that ancient tradition, the teaching of the Scriptures. When Irenæus says, “we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles,” he refers to the teachings of the Scriptures.

            Thanks,

            Tim

  41. Timothy P says:

    “And maybe you can answer the question that no one seems to want to answer, is the date of celebrating Easter a matter of doctrine or dogma? That may help clarify Polycarp’s visit.”

    I have no idea what this is about. I have not been focusing on this issue between you and Kevin. Easter has nothing to do with Scripture, and is a Romish holy day. Therefore, I don’t know what you are asking. There are countless and extensive books written on the regulative principle of worship, and those who celebrate Easter because Polycarp invented it does not really matter to me. It is fine for Roman Catholics as they have more holy days and worship innovation than any sect or cult in the world.

    Timothy P said:

    “Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews3 in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome, and laying the foundations of the Church. After their departure, Mark, the disciple and interpreter of Peter, did also hand down to us in writing what had been preached by Peter.”

    Ok, this is interesting. I’ve never heard of this before. I stated there is no evidence I have ever seen Peter was in Rome, and that is especially from Scripture.

    However, if you are stating that Irenaeus states that Peter was preaching with Paul in Rome, and he had evidence of this, than it could be very true. Thank you for this information. I will have to look deeper into this question. Do you know if there is any information that Irenaeus had received as evidence that Peter was in Rome preaching with Paul?

    Maybe he has a source document as it is not in the Scriptures.

  42. Walt wrote

    ““And maybe you can answer the question that no one seems to want to answer, is the date of celebrating Easter a matter of doctrine or dogma? That may help clarify Polycarp’s visit.”

    I have no idea what this is about. I have not been focusing on this issue between you and Kevin. Easter has nothing to do with Scripture, and is a Romish holy day. Therefore, I don’t know what you are asking. There are countless and extensive books written on the regulative principle of worship, and those who celebrate Easter because Polycarp invented it does not really matter to me. It is fine for Roman Catholics as they have more holy days and worship innovation than any sect or cult in the world.”

    Walt, you also quoted Timothy K

    “Timothy K wrote:

    “Do you notice a pattern? Irenæus comes to Rome from Gaul to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under the eye of “pope” Eleutherius. Polycarp comes to Rome from Asia to correct heresies flourishing in Rome under “pope” Anicetus.””

    Now what was the great Popish heresy that Anicetus was propagating according to Timothy K? It was over the date we celebrate Easter! Now Timothy K answered the question that apparently you and Kevin did not or could not answer. He wrote

    “Timothy P wrote,

    “And maybe you can answer the question that no one seems to want to answer, is the date of celebrating Easter a matter of doctrine or dogma?”

    Neither. It is a custom.”

    And Timothy K is correct. So Polycarp was not correcting a heresy taught by Anicetus, they were arguing over a custom. There was no heresy. What we learn from the incident however was that Anicetus believing in the primacy of the Church in Rome and his position was threatening to cut off the Eastern churches over this custom dispute and from what I understand this is where Irenaeus stepped in and called for cooler heads to prevail.
    I’ll try to respond to Eleutherius’s heresy according to Timothy K and

    ““It is impossible to say with certainty of what words in the Greek original “potiorem principalitatem” may be the translation”

    later this week

    1. Timothy P, I was wondering if you had given any further thought to the question I asked last week. You can find it here. You said you weren’t overly impressed with John Paul II’s or Newman’s or Marshall’s eschatological arguments for the church on their own, but I never got a feel for how you would “historically identify the true church,” which you have suggested is quite important to do.

      Thanks,

      Tim

      1. Timothy K, my approach would be to follow Irenaeus’s reasoning.

        “1. Since therefore we have such proofs, it is not necessary to seek the truth among others which it is easy to obtain from the Church; since the apostles, like a rich man [depositing his money] in a bank, lodged in her hands most copiously all things pertaining to the truth: so that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life. For she is the entrance to life; all others are thieves and robbers. On this account are we bound to avoid them, but to make choice of the thing pertaining to the Church with the utmost diligence, and to lay hold of the tradition of the truth. For how stands the case? Suppose there arise a dispute relative to some important question among us, should we not have recourse to the most ancient Churches with which the apostles held constant intercourse, and learn from them what is certain and clear in regard to the present question? For how should it be if the apostles themselves had not left us writings? Would it not be necessary, [in that case,] to follow the course of the tradition which they handed down to those to whom they did commit the Churches?”

        Note, “For she is the entrance of life” Who is she, the Church! I just can’t imagine Irenaeus making the comment “For how should it be if the apostles themselves had not left us writings” if Irenaeus had believed in only the written tradition. Irenaeus obviously believed in an authoritative church, authoritative written tradition and an authoritative oral tradition.

  43. Timothy P, Elutherus and Victor I supported Montanism. That wasn’t a custom. Go back and research how Stephen was rebuked for error. This was a pattern in the Roman church. And it could no longer be held back starting late 4th century. And please note, that the true church has always separated itself from the system you support, even through the dark ages. Roman Catholicism is a false Christianity, apostate.

  44. Kevin, I have already shown that you accept as the true church those in Germany who had fake priest while at the same time posting Spurgeon’s attack on a clerical priesthood. So I assume you believe those Christians in Germany outside the Catholic Church were Presbyterian? I don’t believe you and Walt are on the same planet when is comes to deciding where the true church is.

    1. Timothy P, I’m sure you are aware that the word for priest hierus. It appears 400 times in the OT. It never appears in the NT. Peter says true believers are a royal priesthood cleras clergy. We are all priests in that sense. But there are no OT priests in the NT. Jesus is the only high priest whose altar, sacrifice, and priesthood are in heaven. Spurgeon was exactly right that the bible teaches justification and salvation by faith, not priests.

    2. Timothy P wrote:

      “So I assume you believe those Christians in Germany outside the Catholic Church were Presbyterian? I don’t believe you and Walt are on the same planet when is comes to deciding where the true church is.”

      In Germany they were reformed, but they were Lutheran and largely Anabaptist Independents. Presbyterians do not have Lutheran priests nor priestly titles. The true church is divided into being (esse) and well-being (bene esse).

      1. Walt, can you give me the bible verse where you found the following statement

        “The true church is divided into being (esse) and well-being (bene esse).”

    3. Timothy P said ” Kevin, I have already shown you that you accept as the true church those in Germany who had fake priest while at the same posting Spurgeon attack on the clerical priesthood. Romans 3:24 ” Being justified by freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ.” Do you see any cooperation in that verse? How about ” clerical priesthood” ? How about Germany? How about Catholic church? Spurgeon said salvation was free and full through the blood of Christ. Not in you synagogue. Catholics seek salvation and forgiveness through priests, ceremonies, transubstantiation, pilgrimages, the church, Mary, scapulars, and so it goes. He will come up empty. Jesus simply said ” repent and believe in the gospel” Those men that rejected all that was being piled on the cross by Rome in the 4th century, those righteous men who lived by faith in Christ alone, those men that didn’t seek their salvation through the merits and idolatries of Rome, those men were the men faithfully kept the commandments of God, those are the men of the true church. Make no mistake, those like Jerome, and Ambrose, any any other man who corrupted the gospel of grace with heresy like merit through chastity, the sacrifice of the mass etc. were not in the true church.

      1. Kevin, maybe I can simplify this for you. , Where those in Germany who had priest but were not Catholic members of the true church? Timothy K worte

        “Notable, as well, is the fact that Archbishop Boniface in Germany, by the middle of eighth century, had written to Pope Zachary to complain that there was a full-fledged church operating there independently of Rome, wandering about in his diocese, its ministers “disguised under the name of bishops or priests,” meeting in “separate assemblies,” and “in strange places.

        Now where these minister claiming to be bishops or priests member of the True Church? Timothy K apparently thinks they were, but they were claiming to be priest so you will have to let me know your opinion. I know it makes you look inconsistent but I can’t help that.

        1. Timothy P, I’m not sure what makes me look inconsistent. Those men that Boniface describes as ” disguised under the name of bishops and priests” were certainly members of the true church. They certainly weren’t worried about their holy orders and being alter Christus.

          1. Kevin, of course you are inconsistent. You can’t “cut and paste” Spurgeon’s condemnation of priest and then claim that a group that claims to have priest and bishops is some how part of the true church. I wish Walt would chime in and tell you what he thinks about this issue. Can a church which claims to have priest and bishops be part of the true church?
            Kevin, you also wrote
            “They certainly weren’t worried about their holy orders and being alter Christus”

            Kevin, you have no idea what this group believed or taught so how can you make the claim you made with any conviction. So give me a list of their beliefs since you seem to make claims with no foundation.

  45. Timothy K, in Irenaeus’s quote you provided

    “Those who, in the absence of written documents, have believed this faith, are barbarians, so far as regards our language; but as regards doctrine, manner, and tenor of life, they are, because of faith, very wise indeed; and they do please God, ordering their conversation in all righteousness, chastity, and wisdom.”
    what “written documents” do you believe Irenaeus is referring to.

    Also where did you find the following quote?

    ” believing in one God (1Co 8:6, 1 Tim 2:5),
    the Creator of heaven and earth (Ge 1:1),
    and all things therein (Col 1:16),
    by means of Christ Jesus (Col 1:16),
    the Son of God (Mr 1:1);
    who, because of His surpassing love towards His creation (Jn 3:16),
    condescended to be born of the virgin (Mt 1:23),
    He Himself uniting man through Himself to God (2Co 5:18-20),
    and having suffered under Pontius Pilate (Mr 15:15),
    and rising again (Mt 28:6),
    and having been received up in splendour (Ac 1:9),
    shall come in glory (Lu 21:27),
    the Saviour of those who are saved (Mt 1:21),
    and the Judge of those who are judged (2Ti 4:1),
    and sending into eternal fire those who transform the truth (1 Thess 2:12, 2 Peter 3:16),
    and despise His Father and His advent (Joh 5:23)”

    1. Timothy P, I think the answers to your questions are sufficiently clear from the context in which I quoted Irenæus. I encourage you to read it again. The answers are all there.

      Best,

      Tim

  46. I think the context is quite clear, the “written documents” are what we would call apostolic writings although obviously the canon issue had not been settled yet. Now I thought the quote was odd because obviously Irenaeus did not provide the bible verse notations. You know as well as I do organizing the bible by chapter and verse was a thousand years later. So I’m wondering who added the bible verses if it was not Irenaeus. And why? I can understand where a Protestant would want to add the chapter , verse notations to try to down play Irenaeus comments that the barbarians without the “written documents”
    “they do please God, ordering their conversation in all righteousness, chastity, and wisdom.”
    That’s why I asked for your source.

    1. Timothy P, wrote,

      “I think the context is quite clear, the “written documents” are what we would call apostolic writings although obviously the canon issue had not been settled yet.”

      Actually, the context is even clearer than that, and the “written documents” refers to the “scriptures,” for Irenæus has been focusing on that since the beginning of book III.

      You continued,

      “Now I thought the quote was odd because obviously Irenaeus did not provide the bible verse notations. You know as well as I do organizing the bible by chapter and verse was a thousand years later. So I’m wondering who added the bible verses if it was not Irenaeus. And why? I can understand where a Protestant would want to add the chapter … That’s why I asked for your source.”

      And yet only a few days ago you posted this citation from Irenæus:

      “And as we are His members. we are also nourished by means of the creation (and He Himself grants the creation to us, for He causes His sun to rise, and sends rain when He wills Matthew 5:45).”

      Timothy P, it is not uncommon for people to insert the Scripture reference to show the Scriptural reference, even if the writer did not identify it by chapter and verse. Why are you suddenly offended at the insertion of the Scriptural references into Irenæus’ text when just a few days ago you posted a citation from Irenæus with the chapter and verse inserted into Irenæus’ text? For good measure, here are some more citations of Irenæus from those “Protestants” over at New Advent who have inserted chapter and verse citations into Irenæus’ text.

      “Since therefore we have such proofs, it is not necessary to seek the truth among others which it is easy to obtain from the Church; since the apostles, like a rich man [depositing his money] in a bank, lodged in her hands most copiously all things pertaining to the truth: so that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life. Revelation 22:17 For she is the entrance to life; all others are thieves and robbers.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 4.1)

      “Since, therefore, the tradition from the apostles does thus exist in the Church, and is permanent among us, let us revert to the Scriptural proof furnished by those apostles who did also write the Gospel, in which they recorded the doctrine regarding God, pointing out that our Lord Jesus Christ is the truth, John 14:6 and that no lie is in Him.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 5.1)

      Anyway, the source of the quote is Irenæus, and I provided the link for you from New Advent. I simply added in the Scripture references to show that there was nothing in what Irenæus called “apostolic tradition” that cannot be found in Scriptures. In fact, that was his very point in this section of Against Heresies. His whole point in this book is to prove the error of the heretics “from the Scriptures”:

      “in this, the third book I shall adduce proofs from the Scriptures, so that I may come behind in nothing of what you have enjoined; yea, that over and above what you reckoned upon, you may receive from me the means of combating and vanquishing those who, in whatever manner, are propagating falsehood.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, Introduction)

      His illustration of illiterate barbarians who without “written documents” still hold to Scriptural truth and will not open their ears to novelties simply points out that among the illiterate, the Holy Spirit preserves their orthodoxy, for it is indeed possible for barbarians to hear and believe the truth even if they are illiterate.

      But in the next chapter, Irenæus says that such is not the case with us, because we have the Scriptures, and therefore let us turn to the Scriptures:

      “Since, therefore, the tradition from the apostles does thus exist in the Church, and is permanent among us, let us revert to the Scriptural proof furnished by those apostles” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 5.1)

      If Irenæus had pointed out a barbarian illiterate church in which various doctrines had developed regarding Mary’s immaculate conception, communion on the tongue, kneeling to the wood of the cross, kneeling on Sundays, bowing to relics, reverencing images, papal primacy, Mary as the Ark of the New Covenant, etc, etc, etc…, you might have a point. But here in the section of the book in which he plans to “adduce proofs from the Scriptures,” he manages to demonstrate how the illiterate barbarians had been preserved in orthodoxy by retaining Scriptural truths in their hearts, and refusing to believe any novelties introduced later in time. And this is clearly that to which Irenæus was referring when he spoke of apostolic tradition: Scriptural truth.

      Thanks,

      Tim

  47. Timothy P said:

    “I think the context is quite clear, the “written documents” are what we would call apostolic writings although obviously the canon issue had not been settled yet.”

    I really wish you had the ability and discernment to understand what it meant for irenaeus to appeal to scripture and not to oral tradition as the word of God. Are you saying the closing of the canon had not been yet completed by the time of irenaeus?

    I’m not 100% sure of these dates on revelation, but please explain when you believe the canon was closed? Tim K is convinced of the early date of revelation as it is important for his eschatology to fit nicely together, but to say the canon had not been settled by time of irenaeus is strange.

    “There is one phase, not so far mentioned:
    “When the completion comes,” or “when that which is perfect comes.” This raises the question: Completion of what? It could be the completion of the canon. Miracles and tongues were for the purpose of guaranteeing the divine origin of apostolic doctrine.

    They cease when the revelation was completed. Even the word knowledge is better understood this way. Instead of comparing present-day extensive study of the New Testament with Justin’s [Martyr] painfully inadequate understanding of the Atonement, it would be better to take knowledge as the apostolic process of revealing new knowledge. This was completed when revelation ceased.”(5)

    For I testify unto every man that heareth the
    words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. (Rev. 22:18-19)

    The book of Revelation for good reasons is believed to be the last book written. It was completed prior to 70 A.D. The passages in chapter 1:3 and 22:6, 12 are time indicators that point to an early date to this book. Why, someone may ask? The wording in these texts such as “for the time is at hand” and “which must shortly be done” provide convincing evidence for an early date prior to 70 A.D. for John’s revelation. This is because, the First Century fulfillment of the prophecies within the book are relevant to dating of Revelation prior to 70 A.D. The time texts previously mentioned become important indicators pointing towards dating the book in the Firs Century.

    In addition, the temple in chapter eleven shown to be still in existence also supports this early date prior to 70A.D. If an early date for the book of Revelation is accurate (which it is) then it allows the book to fit into the time frame of Daniel’s prophecy. Accordingly, the book of Revelation fits into the time frame and purview of Daniel’s “seventy weeks.” Therefore, those who argue for continued revelation do so at the peril of their souls since they are urging men to violate this Scriptural warning recorded in the last book of the canon.

    Another passage that sheds important light on the penalty for giving false revelation is in Zechariah thirteen. The context of this section of Zechariah places it in the First Century. See Zechariah 11:13; 12:10; 13:1; 13:7 for proof of this First Century setting. Consider this warning not to add to God’s word:

    It shall come to pass that if anyone still
    prophesies, then his father and mother who begot him will say to him, You shall not live, because you have spoken lies in the name of the Lord. And his father and mother who begot him shall thrust him through when he prophesies. (Zechariah 13:3) (NKJ)”

    http://www.undergroundnotes.com/canon.htm

  48. Timothy P wrote:

    “Walt, can you give me the bible verse where you found the following statement

    “The true church is divided into being (esse) and well-being (bene esse).”

    Sure. Go to this link and click on “Of The Church” section and read scripture proofs. The great things about Presbyterians is that we have already done all this work for your using scripture alone to be an aide and help to guys like you and me. Enjoy!

    http://www.reformed.org/documents/wcf_with_proofs/

    In fact, you might enjoy reading and meditating upon entire document to get a solid understanding on how you compare scripture with scripture to reach an inerrant truth by a church court. Few understand how true divine ordained and bible courts operate to declare inerrant truth so it is a good lesson for you. This is how you really bind and loose. It has nothing to do with pope peter or his followers.

  49. Timothy P, imagination and speculation are the qualities of Roman Catholics. Aquinas used this to justify the veneration of the cross, nowhere mentioned in scripture. That secret unwritten tradition. But the book of Acts, the Epistles all appeal to the scriptures as the rule of faith. And so did Basil so emphatically. I provided you the quote. Let the scriptures decide on doctrine and on that side we cast our vote. I don’t think your reference to Basil speaking of the doxology an unwritten practice of the church rises to the level of violating his specific quote that scripture is the final decider on doctrine.

  50. Does anyone have any more accurate list of the dates of the books of the new testament closing? This is obviously different than those who believe the final book of revelation was completed before 70 AD.

    http://ntcanon.org/ntbooks.shtml

    The New Testament Books (canonical)

    The scholarly literature on the New Testament books is (of course) huge and easily accessible. There is no attempt here to discuss them individually. Here is their approximate order of composition:

    I and II Thessalonians: ~50 CE

    I and II Corinthians: 54-56

    Galatians: ~56

    Romans: 56-57

    Colossians: ~61

    Philemon: ~61

    Philippians: ~62

    Gospel according to Mark: 65-70

    Gospel according to Matthew: 80-85

    Acts and Gospel according to Luke: 85-90

    Hebrews: 85-90

    Gospel according to John: 90-100

    Revelation of John: ~95

    Ephesians, James, and I Peter: 95-100

    I, II, and III John: 100-110

    I and II Timothy and Titus: 110-130

    Jude, II Peter: 130-150

  51. Timothy K, I appreciate your honesty. I wrote

    “You know as well as I do organizing the bible by chapter and verse was a thousand years later. So I’m wondering who added the bible verses if it was not Irenaeus. And why? I can understand where a Protestant would want to add the chapter , verse notations to try to down play Irenaeus comments that the barbarians without the “written documents”.”

    Timothy K responded

    “Anyway, the source of the quote is Irenæus, and I provided the link for you from New Advent. I simply added in the Scripture references to show that there was nothing in what Irenæus called “apostolic tradition” that cannot be found in Scriptures. In fact, that was his very point in this section of Against Heresies. His whole point in this book is to prove the error of the heretics “from the Scriptures”:

    Now I realize as you stated Timothy K

    “Timothy P, it is not uncommon for people to insert the Scripture reference to show the Scriptural reference, even if the writer did not identify it by chapter and verse. Why are you suddenly offended at the insertion of the Scriptural references into Irenæus’ text when just a few days ago you posted a citation from Irenæus with the chapter and verse inserted into Irenæus’ text?”

    I wasn’t offended and I realize it is helpful to all of us when a quote from the Fathers is identified by chapter and verse but these were not direct quotes and the fact that you added the chapter and verses obviously was done to tip the scales that Irenaeus was a proponent of Sola Scriptura.

    Timothy K, you acknowledged the following

    “His illustration of illiterate barbarians who without “written documents” still hold to Scriptural truth and will not open their ears to novelties simply points out that among the illiterate, the Holy Spirit preserves their orthodoxy, for it is indeed possible for barbarians to hear and believe the truth even if they are illiterate.”

    and I would agree but it all falls back on authority residing in Scripture alone or in the apostolic Church with its oral and written tradition. As you had just quoted from Irenaeus

    “Since therefore we have such proofs, it is not necessary to seek the truth among others which it is easy to obtain from the Church; since the apostles, like a rich man [depositing his money] in a bank, lodged in her hands most copiously all things pertaining to the truth: so that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life. Revelation 22:17 For she is the entrance to life; all others are thieves and robbers.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 4.1)”

    Now obviously if you are going to get specific about what the apostles taught, it’s going to be difficult to debate based on references to oral tradition. The Gnostics especially claimed an oral secret tradition , But that doesn’t mean that that authoritative apostolic oral tradition did not exist. Let’s count. Irenaeus wrote

    ONE

    “1. When, however, they are confuted from the Scriptures, they turn round and accuse these same Scriptures, as if they were not correct, nor of authority, and [assert] that they are ambiguous, and that the truth cannot be extracted from them by those who are ignorant of tradition. For [they allege] that the truth was not delivered by means of written documents, but vivâ voce: wherefore also Paul declared, “But we speak wisdom among those that are perfect, but not the wisdom of this world.”4 And this wisdom each one of them alleges to be the fiction of his own inventing, forsooth; so that, according to their idea, the truth properly resides at one time in Valentinus, at another in Marcion, at another in Cerinthus, then afterwards in Basilides, or has even been indifferently in any other opponent,5 who could speak nothing pertaining to salvation. For every one of these men, being altogether of a perverse disposition, depraving the system of truth, is not ashamed to preach himself.”

    TWO

    “2. But, again, when we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles, [and] which is preserved by means of the succession of presbyters in the Churches, they object to tradition, saying that they themselves are wiser not merely than the presbyters, but even than the apostles, because they have discovered the unadulterated truth. For [they maintain] that the apostles intermingled the things of the law with the words of the Saviour; and that not the apostles alone, but even the Lord Himself, spoke as at one time from the Demiurge, at another from the intermediate place, and yet again from the Pleroma, but that they themselves, indubitably, unsulliedly, and purely, have knowledge of the hidden mystery: this is, indeed, to blaspheme their Creator after a most impudent manner! It comes to this, therefore, that these men do not consent neither to Scripture nor to tradition.””

    Now it should be obvious even to a child that Irenaeus is supporting the Catholic view of authoritative Church, authoritative Scripture and authoritative tradition , ie obviously oral tradition.

    Again this is mostly common sense. Obviously the Scriptures do not directly address many of the issues we debate today but common sense tells us that these issues would have been addressed by the apostles and that the early Christians would have understood those issues clearly. How did they understand them? By oral tradition. For example, infant baptism. Who in their right mind would not realize that the next generation after the apostles would have known if they should or should not baptize infants. Or praying for the dead? Where in the Bible does it explicitly say we should or should not pray for the dead? The understanding of rather the Eucharist was indeed the Body and Blood of Christ or symbolic would obviously have been known by that first generation of Christians. How would they have known? By oral tradition! And yet, Timothy K, based on your interpretation of the book of Revelation we are to believe that after 300 years of being taught not to baptize infants, not to pray for the dead and that the Eucharist is only a symbol all of these teaching where reversed without a major uprising. (I realize your group baptizes infants but as you know I suspect most Bible only Christians reject infant baptism.) As I have pointed out before if I went into you Church and started preaching the doctrine of the real presence 98% of your church goers would walk out the door. And yet you believe this occurred during this great apostasy you envision based on your interpretation of Scripture,, ie primarily the Book of Revelation without a whimper.
    One last point. You speak of novelties, you do realize that the canon list of New Testament Books was a novelty. You can’t separate the Church, the authoritative written tradition and the authoritative oral tradition. In fact you can’t get to the canon list without the Church and the oral tradition.

    1. Timothy P, you wrote,

      “I wasn’t offended and I realize it is helpful to all of us when a quote from the Fathers is identified by chapter and verse but these were not direct quotes and the fact that you added the chapter and verses obviously was done to tip the scales that Irenaeus was a proponent of Sola Scriptura.”

      And yet the two examples I provided to you from New Advent, and the one I provided from your own keyboard, were not direct quotes! I provided them to you to make that exact point, and provide them to you again:

      “Since therefore we have such proofs, it is not necessary to seek the truth among others which it is easy to obtain from the Church; since the apostles, like a rich man [depositing his money] in a bank, lodged in her hands most copiously all things pertaining to the truth: so that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life. Revelation 22:17 For she is the entrance to life; all others are thieves and robbers.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 4.1)

      As you know, “So that every man, whosoever will, can draw from her the water of life” is not a direct quote from Revelation 22:17. Revelation 22:17 is just one place where that can be supported. Are those Roman Catholics at New Advent secretly advancing an agenda of Sola Scriptura?

      Another example from New Advent:

      “Since, therefore, the tradition from the apostles does thus exist in the Church, and is permanent among us, let us revert to the Scriptural proof furnished by those apostles who did also write the Gospel, in which they recorded the doctrine regarding God, pointing out that our Lord Jesus Christ is the truth, John 14:6 and that no lie is in Him.” (Irenæus, Against Heresies, Book III, chapter 5.1)

      As you know, “pointing out that our Lord Jesus Christ is the truth” is not a direct quote from John 14:6. John 14:6 is just one place where that can be supported. Are those Roman Catholics at New Advent secretly advancing an agenda of Sola Scriptura?

      Another example from your own analysis of Irenæus’ work:

      “And as we are His members. we are also nourished by means of the creation (and He Himself grants the creation to us, for He causes His sun to rise, and sends rain when He wills Matthew 5:45).”

      As you know, “He causes His sun to rise, and sends rain when He wills” is not a direct quote from Matthew 5:45. Matthew 5:45 is just one place where that can be supported. Now you are secretly advancing a Sola Scriptura agenda?

      Please, Timothy P, read Irenæus in context. He says his own personal agenda in Book III is to prove his points from the Scriptures, and when he cites the apostolic traditions that have been held by the illiterate barbaric nations, every one of the “apostolic traditions” that the Spirit had written on their hearts without paper and ink is something that is explicitly stated in the Scriptures, and just like you yourself did with Irenæus just a few days ago, I have provided you the places in Scriptures where those truths are supported. The “traditions” Irenæus listed were truly apostolic. The traditions you espouse here are not.

      Just like those illiterate barbarian nations, guided and protected by the Holy Spirit, close their ears to the novelties of Irenæus’ day, I close my ears to your heretical novelties, for they are not apostolic traditions.

      I’m not sure where our conversation can go from here. I don’t believe your religion is apostolic, and you don’t believe mine is. I find your arguments wholly unconvincing, and you find mine the same.

      I’m pretty sure we’re at a point where further conversation with you is entirely fruitless.

      Well, anyway, please be sure in the future, if you really believe what you claim, that you omit any scriptural references in anything you cut and paste from anyone unless you know with certainty that it is a direct quote from the Scriptures.

      Thanks,

      Tim

  52. Timothy P said:

    “and I would agree but it all falls back on authority residing in Scripture alone or in the apostolic Church with its oral and written tradition.”

    You almost are right. You almost have Presbyterianism figured out as it is the only true divine right of church government. You are still getting really confused with the Anabaptists and the Evangelicals who believe that “bible only” is their foundation, except they all have significant divisions on what the “bible only” means. Talk is so cheap that every minister running around claiming “bible alone” or “bible only” spewing out old heresies have no bible church government.

    Keep studying Timothy P, you will get to understand Presbyterianism soon. You just have to push out all the Romish heresy and confusion that filled my mind and certainly that has fills your mind still.

  53. It just dawned on me that Timothy P does not believe that the old testament scriptures were used by the early church fathers, and there was no scriptures available to the early church fathers. He must content there was only oral tradition from the time of Jesus Christ until the time the Canon Books were approved.

    When we have clearly shown that the true and faithful church existed in the first to the fourth century using the Scriptures alone as the primary standard of truth, and the oral tradition that taught heresy, sectarianism, error and division was rebuked by the early church fathers using Scripture alone.

    Tim P is so convinced there was no bible in the first to the 4th century that all this speak of nobody knew anything except for when they had the Scriptures in the 4th century except for the Popes who were the only teachers of the church truth. Silly.

    Tim K wrote:

    “The testimony of these Protestants, and the evidence of their departure, is important because the typical Roman Catholic, referring to the Reformation, will ask why it took the “true church” 1,500 years to respond to and correct errors that arose in the early centuries. That typical Roman Catholic, assuming Roman Catholicism was the only expression of Christianity until the 16th century, will also ask where the “true church” was all that time.

    The answers to these questions are simple: It did not take 1,500 years, and the “true church” never stopped existing. When Roman Catholicism manifested as a religion in the latter part of the 4th century, it did so as the great “falling away” of 2 Thessalonians 2:3. Roman Catholicism arose from within the ranks of the church, just as Paul and Peter had warned, “speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them” (Acts 20:30), and “who privily shall bring in damnable heresies” (2 Peter 2:1). The “true church” immediately Protested against the perversions and heresies, and was preserved intact as a beacon of truth in the wilderness, orthodox in her doctrine and evangelical in her preaching, but unwilling to bend the knee to the religion of Rome.”

  54. ” and yet you believe that this occurred during this great apostasy you envisioned based on your interpretation of scripture ie. Revelation.” Timothy P, I read your post to Tim K. Let me get this right you defend a secret oral tradition that has no scriptural support, but criticize a visible apostasy that has full biblical support. You know what it tells me about many RC’s who come here, they are more interested in arguing for this so called secret oral tradition that supports their novelties which has no biblical support, then to come here and read the material to learn about the apostasy that is clear in scripture. Timothy P, don’t feel like you have to justify Roman Catholicism, it is there for everybody to see. But the true believer searches the scriptures with inner witness of the Spirit to find error and idolatry and apostasy, the very things that will keep men from heaven. Because the true believer understands the warning of scripture, that these errors will come from inside the church, taking on the claim to be the church. Timothy, scripture says Satan masquerades as a child of light. That says to me the most visible real claim to the Christian church should be where Christians look the hardest. Jesus said narrow is the gate and few enter by it , many go by the wide way. Is there a wider way than 2 billion members. Its not few who have entered the gates of Rome.

    1. Kevin, who said a “secret oral tradition”, I think you were mixing up my comment concerning the Gnostics. You do realize that it is oral tradition that identifies the writers of the New Testament. What we know about who Luke was was oral tradition.

      Kevin, you also wrote

      “Timothy, scripture says Satan masquerades as a child of light. That says to me the most visible real claim to the Christian church should be where Christians look the hardest. Jesus said narrow is the gate and few enter by it , many go by the wide way. Is there a wider way than 2 billion members. Its not few who have entered the gates of Rome.”

      Kevin, you have been hanging around Mike too long. The last time I head that Satan masquerades as a child of the light argument Mike was using it against the Catholic church because the Church is the largest charitable group in the world. I guess we just can’t win can we. Even when we do good we are Satan.

      1. ” you do realize that it is oral tradition that identifies the writers of the NT. What we know about Luke is Oral tradition.” Not sure the argument you’re making. Tim K has shown you Iranaeus meant the written scripture is the tradition He speaks of, and I provided a quote where Basil says the scripture is the most important thing in doctrinal disagreements. And we know that at the time of the Reformation according to Carl Truman the Roman Catholic church was disorganised, steeped in idolatry and superstition, its own laity lacking any assurance because of the semi pelagian doctrines. One of the results of the reformation was an amazing consistency and continuity in their confessions and the churches flourished. They had brought back the people to the word and the true gospel again provided the assurance of salvation which had robbed the people who were preached the evil mass and selling Christ’s merits.

      2. Timothy P, Mike wasn’t using it against the Roman Catholic church because of they were the largest charitable group , he was saying that your church is Satan masquerading as an angel of light because your popes ran a killing machine from their office through centuries. You Catholics have an uncanny ability to compartmentalize. Don’t avoid the history of your church, priesthood, or the many important things Tim has brought out in his articles. They are nuggets of facts and truths that help us identify the real identity of your church. The K

        1. Kevin, you obviously have not reviewed that discussion I had with Mike from your above comments. Who would accuse a group of masquerading as an angel of light by running a killing machine? I brought up the fact that the Catholic church was the world’s largest charitable group and was told by Mike that the bible teaches that Satan would masquerade as an angel of light.

          1. ” Who would accuse a group a group of masquerading as an angel of light by running a killing machine?” Seriously Timothy P? Luther said there in lies the papal government. They would say exactly what you just did, ” I brought up the fact that the Catholic church was one of the most charitable groups in the world and was told that the bible teaches that Satan would masquerade as an angel of light. Exactly. What do you think an angel of light would look like? The masquerade means you out on a costume of something you aren’t. Mathew 15:8 Jesus says their lips praise me yet their hearts are far from me. Iow, frauds. They wear collars and robes and yes even perform charitable works while being the greatest enemy of the gospel ever. Masquerade.

  55. Kevin,

    Timothy P said:

    “and I would agree but it all falls back on authority residing in Scripture alone or in the apostolic Church with its oral and written tradition.”

    Do you notice how with him it is “one” or “the other”? He does not believe Presbyterianism is true that says Scripture is the primary standard and church history is the subordinate standard. He wants to be an Anabaptist and independent that believe “sola scriptura only” or “church tradition only”.

    The entire argument he is making is exactly what the Baptists and Independents and Evangelicals make. They all claim it is “bible alone” or “bible only” and they absolutely do not fallen any man made traditions. They are all individual churches in their mind holding to their views only of the bible only, and even if they believe and teach an ancient heresy (an old tradition) they don’t care. It is “bible only” and that is what they believe. Timothy P makes it equally clear. You either can choose “bible only” or you can choose “church tradition” using “sacred oral tradition” and more importantly, the church tradition is superior to the Word of God.

    Why? Because he believe the Bible did not exist yet in the first, second, third and fourth centuries. He thus is clear you have to chose own or the other, bible (which did not exist) or oral tradition (which is his foundation to truth). He lays it out so anyone who choose Scripture is a fool and he is laughing all the way to the Pope in Rome showing his loyalty.

    It is so clear that like the crazy independents and these goofy lost evangelicals who say “bible only” this Timothy P guy is just as goofy with “church tradition only”.

    Sad, but really very divisive and dangerous. Beware of the pharisees in Rome and in the Evangelical churches!

    1. Walt states

      “Why? Because he believe the Bible did not exist yet in the first, second, third and fourth centuries. He thus is clear you have to chose own or the other, bible (which did not exist) or oral tradition (which is his foundation to truth). He lays it out so anyone who choose Scripture is a fool and he is laughing all the way to the Pope in Rome showing his loyalty.”

      I am laughing Walt but primarily because you seem to have very little understanding of the selection process that went into giving us the Bible. Now I had enough sense not to call the apostolic writings of the early Church the Bible as you appear to do because the canon issue had not been settled. But maybe you missed my comment on Irenaeus.

      “Now it should be obvious even to a child that Irenaeus is supporting the Catholic view of authoritative Church, authoritative Scripture and authoritative tradition , ie obviously oral tradition.”

      Hmmm Walt, how did you miss that comment authoritative Scripture?

      Maybe you could start your study on how we got the Bible from St. Augustine. And note, we don’t find the Bible and then find the true church. We find the true Church and then find the bible . Augustine wrote

      The most skilful interpreter of the sacred writings, then, will be he who in the first place has read them all and retained them in his knowledge, if not yet with full understanding, still with such knowledge as reading gives,—those of them, at least, that are called canonical. For he will read the others with greater safety when built up in the belief of the truth, so that they will not take first possession of a weak mind, nor, cheating it with dangerous falsehoods and delusions, fill it with prejudices averse to a sound understanding. Now, in regard to the canonical Scriptures, he must follow the judgment of the greater number of catholic churches; and among these, of course, a high place must be given to such as have been thought worthy to be the seat of an apostle and to receive epistles. Accordingly, among the canonical Scriptures he will judge according to the following standard: to prefer those that are received by all the catholic churches to those which some do not receive. Among those, again, which are not received by all, he will prefer such as have the sanction of the greater number and those of greater authority, to such as are held by the smaller number and those of less authority. If, however, he shall find that some books are held by the greater number of churches, and others by the churches of greater authority (though this is not a very likely thing to happen), I think that in such a case the authority on the two sides is to be looked upon as equal.
      Totus autem Canon Scripturarum in quo istam considerationem versandam dicimus, his libris continetur: Quinque Moyseos id est Genesi, Exodo, Levitico, Numeris, Deuteronomio; et uno libro Jesu Nave, uno Judicum, uno libello qui appellatur Ruth, qui magis ad Regnorum principium videtur pertinere, deinde quatuor Regnorum et duobus Paralipomenon non consequentibus sed quasi a latere adjunctis simulque pergentibus. Haec est historia quae sibimet annexa tempora continet atque ordinem rerum: sunt aliae tanquam ex diverso ordine quae neque huic ordini neque inter se connectuntur, sicut est Job et Tobias et Esther et Judith et Machabaeorum libri duo et Esdrae duo, qui magis subsequi videntur ordinatam illam historiam usque ad Regnorum vel Paralipomenon terminatam: deinde Prophetae in quibus David unus liber Psalmorum, et Salomonis tres Proverbiorum, Cantici Canticorum, et Ecclesiastes. Nam illi duo libri unus qui Sapientia et alius qui Ecclesiasticus inscribitur de quadam similitudine Salomonis esse dicuntur, nam Jesus Sirach eos conscripsisse constantissime perhibetur qui tamen quoniam in auctoritatem recipi meruerunt inter propheticos numerandi sunt. Reliqui sunt eorum libri qui proprie Prophetae appellantur, duodecim Prophetarum libri singuli, qui connexi sibimet quoniam numquam sejuncti sunt pro uno habentur; quorum Prophetarum nomina sunt haec, Osee, Joel, Amos, Abdias, Jonas, Micha, Naum, Abacuc, Sophonias, Aggeus, Zacharias, Malachias: deinde quatuor Prophetae sunt majorum voluminum Isaias, Jeremias, Daniel, Ezechiel. His quadraginta quatuor libris Testamenti Veteris terminatur auctoritas: Novi autem, quatuor libris Evangelii, secundum Matthaeum, secundum Marcum, secundum Lucam, secundum Joannem; quatuordecim Epistolis Pauli Apostoli, ad Romanos, ad Corinthios duabus, ad Galatas, ad Ephesios, ad Philippenses, ad Thessalonicenses duabus, ad Colossenses, ad Timotheum duabus, ad Titum, ad Philemonem, ad Hebraeos; Petri duabus; tribus Joannis; una Judae et una Iacobi; Actibus Apostolorum libro uno, et Apocalypsi Joannis libro uno. Now the whole canon of Scripture on which we say this judgment is to be exercised, is contained in the following books:—Five books of Moses, that is, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy; one book of Joshua the son of Nun; one of Judges; one short book called Ruth, which seems rather to belong to the beginning of Kings; next, four books of Kings, and two of Chronicles, these last not following one another, but running parallel, so to speak, and going over the same ground. The books now mentioned are history, which contains a connected narrative of the times, and follows the order of the events. There are other books which seem to follow no regular order, and are connected neither with the order of the preceding books nor with one another, such as Job, and Tobias, and Esther, and Judith, and the two books of Maccabees, and the two of Ezra, which last look more like a sequel to the continuous regular history which terminates with the books of Kings and Chronicles. Next are the Prophets, in which there is one book of the Psalms of David; and three books of Solomon, viz., Proverbs, Song of Songs, and Ecclesiastes. For two books, one called Wisdom and the other Ecclesiasticus, are ascribed to Solomon from a certain resemblance of style, but the most likely opinion is that they were written by Jesus the son of Sirach. Still they are to be reckoned among the prophetical books, since they have attained recognition as being authoritative. The remainder are the books which are strictly called the Prophets: twelve separate books of the prophets which are connected with one another, and having never been disjoined, are reckoned as one book; the names of these prophets are as follows:—Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi; then there are the four greater prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel. The authority of the Old Testament is contained within the limits of these forty-four books. That of the New Testament, again, is contained within the following:—Four books of the Gospel, according to Matthew, according to Mark, according to Luke, according to John; fourteen epistles of the Apostle Paul—one to the Romans, two to the Corinthians, one to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, to the Philippians, two to the Thessalonians, one to the Colossians, two to Timothy, one to Titus, to Philemon, to the Hebrews: two of Peter; three of John; one of Jude; and one of James; one book of the Acts of the Apostles; and one of the Revelation of John.
      In his omnibus libris timentes Deum et pietate mansueti quaerunt voluntatem Dei. In all these books those who fear God and are of a meek and pious disposition seek the will of God.

      Regarding Augustine’s statement that the Wisom of Solomon was probably “written by Jesus the son of Sirach,” it should be noted that he later corrected this mistake in his Retractions, book 2, chap. 4, where he writes: “In the second book [of On Christian Doctrine] I made a mistake as to the authorship of the book commonly called the Wisdom of Solomon. For I have since learnt that it is not a well-established fact, as I said it was, that Jesus the son of Sirach, who wrote the book of Ecclesiasticus, wrote this book also: on the contrary, I have ascertained that it is altogether more probable that he was not the author of this book.” He also mentions the Wisdom of Solomon and Ecclesiasticus in the following passage:

      From The City of God, xvii.20

  56. Kevin,

    Please keep studying these two terms of communion. You are not going to find but a very small remnant that believe that the second reformation (perhaps third if you count the reformation in the 3rd century as the first reformation) in Scotland was the highest water mark in Christian Church history outside the Apostolic teachings. Yet, we know (from this blog of Tim K) the incredible division, disunity, schism, infant and basic doctrines that flooded the first to the fourth century Church. The Apostle’s Creed was the high water mark for the Apostles outside God’s inspired Scriptures.

    And as Tim K and other scholars have shown that by the fourth century massive division and a falling away took place in the Christian Church, and Romish religion founded. The first great schism was created and the first protestants watched Roman error separate from the true visible church of Jesus Christ to start the seeding of Antichrist in history.

    Not until we see the Church of Scotland in the second reformation do we really true national Presbyterianism flourish and mature. The Terms of Communion laid down by the Church of Scotland gives us the brightest unity and uniformity in history. Master them and understand their significant in the history of the Christian church. You will not find anything like them in Roman Catholicism, Independency, Anglicanism, Evangelicalism, or with any of the daughters of Rome. They state very clearly (learn the first 3 to start):

    1. An acknowledgment of the Old and New Testament to be the Word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice.

    2. That the whole doctrine of the Westminster Confession of Faith, and the Catechisms, Larger and Shorter, are agreeable unto, and founded upon the Scriptures.

    3. That Presbyterial Church Government and manner of worship are alone of divine right and unalterable; and that the most perfect model of these as yet attained, is exhibited in the Form of Government and Directory for Worship, adopted by the Church of Scotland in the Second Reformation.

    4. That public, social covenanting is an ordinance of God, obligatory on churches and nations under the New Testament; that the National Covenant and the Solemn League are an exemplification of this divine institution; and that these Deeds are of continued obligation upon the moral person; and in consistency with this, that the Renovation of these Covenants at Auchensaugh, Scotland, 1712 was agreeable to the word of God.

    5. An approbation of the faithful contending of the martyrs of Jesus, especially in Scotland, against Paganism, Popery, Prelacy, Malignancy and Sectarianism; immoral civil governments; Erastian tolerations and persecutions which flow from them; and of the Judicial Testimony emitted by the Reformed Presbytery in North Britain, 1761 with supplements from the Reformed Presbyterian Church; as containing a noble example to be followed, in contending for all divine truth, and in testifying against all corruptions embodied in the constitutions of either churches or states.

    6. Practically adorning the doctrine of God our Saviour by walking in all His commandments and ordinances blamelessly.

    I recall Tim K saying he believes in 1, 2, 3 and 6 if memory serves me, and that is better than many self described Presbyterians. Just to believe in the 4 of 6 is significant in our generation.

    My prayers are with your continued excellent studies and learning dear brother!

    I know you don’t let Tim P get under your skin, but it is really fascinating to see how they guys are so convinced that Peter gave all these oral traditions from Pope to Pope and you have to either be “bible only” or “tradition only” to be in the true church of Rome. If they only knew there history, and could see their religion was established in the 4th century in the face of the incredible courage of the first Protestants who stayed firm in the Scriptures and the Apostles doctrine.

  57. Thanks Walt. I’m definitely down with 1 23, 6. I need to undertake the study of 4 and 5. I know that John MacArthur once said that the Scottish Reformers were a high water mark. I will continue to study Walt. And thanks for calling me your brother, I’ve learned allot from you and Tim.

    1. Kevin said:

      “Thanks Walt. I’m definitely down with 1 23, 6. I need to undertake the study of 4 and 5. I know that John MacArthur once said that the Scottish Reformers were a high water mark. I will continue to study Walt. And thanks for calling me your brother, I’ve learned allot from you and Tim.”

      That is really great news Kevin. I was hoping you would find unity in your heart with those 4 out of 6.

      A couple points on 4 and 5 terms. 4 boils down to whether social covenants (and national covenants and even personal covenants) are binding upon Covenanter Presbyterians (like me) or non-coventantal Presbyterians are binding. Some believe that only those who live in Scotland, Ireland and England (the UK) AND claim to be Presbyterian are bound. They don’t believe that covenants transfer from generation to generation outside blood line, for example, or those who live within the boundary of a nation. The NC and SLC are religious covenants between the Church of Scotland, the nations of Scotland, England and Ireland, and the King’s Dominions. Those dominions at the time of the signing extended to early colonial America, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, and perhaps other nations of Britain.

      It is a fascinating study for Presbyterians who believe in terms 1, 2, 3 and 6 to reach a conclusion that 4 and 5 is not binding. Here is some good research to guide you.

      http://www.truecovenanter.com/reformedpresbyterian/steps_of_defection_1913.html

      http://www.truecovenanter.com/covenants/shaw_hephzibah_beulah.html

      http://www.truecovenanter.com/covenants/octorara_covenant_renewal.html

      There are more, but this is good place to start to learn.

      Term 5 is really focused on following the church courts, and which one’s were faithfully adhering to the covenants and points 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6. As Tim is doing here with the Early Church Fathers and detailing out the path of those who were faithful to the Scriptures and those who separated from the truth, you will have to study the same sort of patch from the Church of Scotland and its subordinate courts and splinters.

      What you are witnessing that is happening in the first-fourth century you will have to do the same from the fifteenth to the seventeenth centuries, and see who stayed faithful, visible and who caused schism, visible. Enjoy!

      To learn more, read these guys:

      1) John Knox (1510 – 1572) – 62 years
      2) Alexander Henderson (1583 – 1646) – 63 years
      3) George Gillespie (1613 – 1648) – 35 years
      4) Hugh Binning (1627 – 1653) – 26 years
      5) Samuel Rutherford (1600 – 1661) – 61 years
      6) Robert Baillie (1602 – 1662) – 60 years
      7) Archibald Johnston, Lord Warriston (1611 – 1663) – 52 years
      8) Richard Cameron (1648 – 1680) – 32 years
      9) Donald Cargill (1619 – 1681) – 62 years
      10) Alexander Peden (1626 – 1686) – 60 years
      11) James Renwick (1662 – 1688) – 26 years
      12) David Steele (1803 – 1887) – 84 years

  58. Also your last paragraph is spot on. I truly believe in future generations Tim’s work will be among the most important in the outing of who Roman Catholicism is in the context of scripture, eschatology, and church history. His contributions have greatly clarified not only the church, but the apostasy . This is so important.

  59. “Authentic history is of the essential nature of testimony. The origin and progress of the visible church in the {17} world under the different dispensations of mercy is matter of historical record.

    Since the completion of the canon of divine revelation this record must be written by fallible historians; but there has been an almost universal misrepresentation of the true church by those who have attempted her delineation. Hence the necessity of historical testimony, the history of the contendings and attainments of the “witnesses” (Rev. 11.3), written by themselves; for they only “are children that will not lie.” Isa. 63.8. How can antichrist be identified, or the witnesses themselves known, but by history? For the church herself, her doctrines, worship, discipline, and government have all been traduced, misrepresented, and counterfeited. Then it is patent that the “only way by which the witnesses can identify the true church is by comparing doctrine and order with the alone infallible rule, the Bible, and this comparing involves reasoning—argument; history and argument do, therefore, constitute the Church’s testimony and supply her terms of communion, by which she is distinguished from the “flocks of the companions.”

    Now how can any who reject history identify with the witnesses of former generations?

    It is impossible, for there is no other link of connection.

    Thus since 1806 the term testimony has been perverted and misapplied and confounded with confession; for Reformation Principles Exhibited lacks the two essential parts of a testimony—history and argument. And “all parties who exclude history and argument from their Terms of Communion, do thereby exclude themselves from the Reformed Presbyterian Church.”

    Following the lead of those in America in a downward course, Reformed Presbyterians in Scotland began in 1815 to manifest hostility to the Original Testimony of 1761; this culminated in 1837-1839 in emitting a new Testimony, which although retaining the historic name “Testimony” is clearly {18} modeled after Reformation Principles Exhibited and confounds confession and testimony in the same manner. This document was received and owned by the Irish Synods, also, but in 1864-1865 they adopted a new testimony and Terms of Communion.

    Now why this plurality of substitutes, this general casting off of the fathers’ bound up Testimony? Why this rending of the organic body by “divers and strange doctrines?” Heb. 13.9.

    The answer may be obvious to the reader who will follow the practice of these several bodies claiming to be the original descendents of the martyrs of Scotland.”

    http://www.truecovenanter.com/reformedpresbyterian/steps_of_defection_1913.html

  60. “From the time of Constantine the Great and onward many of the idolatrous Pagan customs were engrafted on the Christian church, to make the new religion less offensive to the heathen and more agreeable to their sensuous desires and gross conceptions. And thus arose gradually the gorgeous fabric of Romish idolatry and superstition. Now we see the origin of funeral services—Pagan idolatry and superstition—and the object of bringing them into the Christian church—to gain the heathen for members—the result—idolatry and superstition clothed with a so-called Christian dress.

    At the time of the Reformation from Popery the Reformed churches of the continent pointedly contemned funeral services, and by various enactments endeavored to guard against all superstition and other abuses and funerals. The Church of Scotland was most forward in showing the evil of these services and making laws against them. And for about two hundred years, not only Covenanters, but also the sounder denominations observed the prohibitions set down by the church of Scotland in the Directory for Public Worship. But, just as these abominations came in little by little into the Christian church at first; so, as the churches of the Reformation departed step [by step] from the glorious attainments made at such cost, idolatry and superstition gradually returned, and funeral services among the rest. Professed Covenanters are now as diligent in performing these heathen rites as any of the other denominations. But with God’s word before them, and the plain statement of our faithful progenitors, that “they have proved many ways hurtful to the living; therefore let all such things be laid aside;” they who practice these abominations sin against light and knowledge.”

    http://www.truecovenanter.com/reformedpresbyterian/steps_of_defection_1913.html

    1. Walt, I hope you are not being hypocritical and attending any of these of these “abominations” against light and knowledge. Now where in the Bible chapter and verse do we see the scriptural basis for funeral service ” prohibitions set down by the church of Scotland in the Directory for Public Worship.” Next you will be attacking Christmas.

      1. Timothy P, the reformers never celebrated Christmas and neither did the apostles. It is a pagan based celebration created by Rome so we don’t practice it. However, you will be pleased to know that everyone else on this blog (except maybe Kevin has taken a stand) and in all our local churches celebrate the Christmas season. Your fine, there are only a very tiny remnant in the world who do not compared to the masses. Some Muslims and Jews do not as well.

  61. Timothy P ” We find the true church and then we find the Bible. ” even though I have provided Basil with the definitive statement that the scripture is the final authority, you make this statement to Walt. Timothy P watching your discussion with Tim and Walt, and in my own discussion with you, you reject the facts put before you and you see what you want, Roman Catholicism.

    1. Kevin, as I mentioned before I am very willing to accept Basil’s statement . You wrote

      “Well Timothy P Basil of Caesarea would disagree with you. ” Let God’s inspired scripture decide between us, and in whatever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of Truth.” 330-379 AD”

      So Kevin, let’s let the inspired scripture decide between us. The Gospel of Matthew ends with Christ passing on teaching authority to his Church, “teaching them to observe all that I commanded you, and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age”. Matthew 28:20. And isn’t it interesting that the last chapter of John’s Gospel clearly establishes the primacy of Peter. I have asked how many times does Peter’s primacy show forth in that last Chapter of John and so far Walt refuses to address the question. Maybe you could tell us.

      And Kevin, what does God’s inspired scripture tell us about oral tradition. Oh yes “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our epistle. 2 Thess 2:15.

      And of course Basil followed the Scriptural teaching in the following comments I posted previously.

      Basil wrote on his discussion of the Holy Spirit

      “But all the apparatus of war has been got ready against us; every intellectual missile is aimed at us; and now blasphemers’ tongues shoot and hit and hit again, yet harder than Stephen of old was smitten by the killers of the Christ. And do not let them succeed in concealing the fact that, while an attack on us serves for a pretext for the war, the real aim of these proceedings is higher. It is against us, they say, that they are preparing their engines and their snares; against us that they are shouting to one another, according to each one’s strength or cunning, to come on. But the object of attack is faith. The one aim of the whole band of opponents and enemies of “sound doctrine” 1 Timothy 1:10 is to shake down the foundation of the faith of Christ by leveling apostolic tradition with the ground, and utterly destroying it. So like the debtors,— of course bona fide debtors— they clamor for written proof, and reject as worthless the unwritten tradition of the Fathers. But we will not slacken in our defense of the truth. We will not cowardly abandon the cause. The Lord has delivered to us as a necessary and saving doctrine that the Holy Spirit is to be ranked with the Father”

      “71. In answer to the objection that the doxology in the form “with the Spirit” has no written authority, we maintain that if there is no other instance of that which is unwritten, then this must not be received. But if the greater number of our mysteries are admitted into our constitution without written authority, then, in company with the many others, let us receive this one. For I hold it apostolic to abide also by the unwritten traditions. “I praise you,” it is said, “that you remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances as I delivered them to you;” 1 Corinthians 11:2 and “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our Epistle.” 2 Thessalonians 2:15 One of these traditions is the practice which is now before us, which they who ordained from the beginning, rooted firmly in the churches, delivering it to their successors, and its use through long custom advances pace by pace with time. If, as in a Court of Law, we were at a loss for documentary evidence, but were able to bring before you a large number of witnesses, would you not give your vote for our acquittal? I think so; for “at the mouth of two or three witnesses shall the matter be established.” Deuteronomy 19:15 And if we could prove clearly to you that a long period of time was in our favour, should we not have seemed to you to urge with reason that this suit ought not to be brought into court against us? For ancient dogmas inspire a certain sense of awe, venerable as they are with a hoary antiquity. I will therefore give you a list of the supporters of the word (and the time too must be taken into account in relation to what passes unquestioned). For it did not originate with us. How could it?”

      So Kevin, I will ask again, “Which inspired writer of the New Testament left us a canon list?”. You accept the teaching authority of the Church when it comes to the canon list ! Why?
      And of course Basil agrees with St, Jerome on the perpetual virginity of Mary whom Basil calls “the mother of God”.

      “For it says: He did not know her until she had given birth to her firstborn son. Now this verse has given rise to the conjecture that, after rendering pure service in accomplishing the birth of the Lord through the Holy Spirit, Mary did not renounce the customary marital relations. But in our opinion, even if none of this harms the account of piety—for virginity was necessary for service in the economy, but inquiring into what happened next out of curiosity should be avoided by reason of its mystery—nonetheless, since lovers of Christ do not accept the opinion that the Mother of God ever ceased being a virgin, we think the following testimonies suffice. Let us return to: He did not know her until she had given birth to her son. In many instances the word “until” seems to suggest a kind of temporal boundary, but in reality it indicates indefiniteness. What did the Lord mean when he said: And behold, I am with you all days, until the close of the age? Indeed, not that the Lord was not going to be with the saints after this age! Rather, it means that the promise of the present age will not be rescinded in the age to come. So we say that in this case too the word “until” should be taken in the same way. Now when firstborn is said, by no means is he the firstborn in comparison to siblings who came after him. Rather, he is called the firstborn because he was the first one to open the womb of his mother. It is also clear from the story about Zechariah that Mary was always a virgin. For there is an account, and it has been handed down to us from the tradition, that Zechariah entrusted Mary to the place for the virgins after conceiving the Lord. Then he was slaughtered by the Jews between the temple and the altar. Charges had been brought against him by the people, on the grounds that by his actions he established that incredible and famous sign: a virgin gave birth and her virginity was not destroyed. ”

      I guess Kevin you and Walt are going to claim that Basil was a Presbyterian!

      1. Timothy P said ” the end of the gospel of Mathew ends with Jesus passing on teaching authority to his church” No, not really. Since you now agree with Basil and Me to let scriptures decide, let’s look at what Jesus really said at the end of Matthew. ” all power in heaven and on earth has been given ME ” not the church. You have been taught that the church is the same as Jesus is the world, not true. Sometimes Christ operates in the church, sometimes outside, in the gospel. Moving on to the Canon list. I don’t need a canon list. The 1st century Jews didn’t have a canon list. Genesis didn’t jump up to a 1st century Jew and say, here I am inspired scripture. Yet Jesus expected them to know it. There was an understanding early on of the working books of the NT. The church later on put it in a binder. Thanks allot. You know good and well that your synagogue didn’t have an official canon until Trent, so don’t expect one from me. I’m fine with the Protestant canon. I believe its infallible. I disagree with Basil on his position on Mary here. Firstborn in Jewish custom meant there are others to follow. Plus scripture said Jesus had brothers not cousins. And Basil is hedging here, the word until is plain, it means after he did have relations with her. Otherwise who bore his brothers. And Mary is never called the Mother of God in scripture, but the mother of Jesus. So Basil in that quote is going beyond scripture, calling her the mother of God, even though He probably means according to his human nature. Augustine said Jesus had no heavenly mother and no earthly father. I’ll go with that. ” Kevin and Walt are you going to claim that Basil was a Presbyterian? ” He was a heck of allot closer to Presbyterian that a Papist. When I read in his quote above ” the one aim of the whole band of opponents to” sound doctrine”is to shake down the foundation of the faith” Frankly Timothy P, the fact that you would provide a quote from Basil that could describe exactly what Roman Catholicism as a ” band of opponents ” has done over centuries to destroy sound doctrine and shake the foundation of the faith tells me you are under the delusion of 2 Thessalonians 2:11. No so called church in history has done more to change sound doctrine and destroy true faith than Rome. Look simply at justification. Paul says in Romans 4:5 God justifies a wicked man who does not work. But Rome says God justifies a righteous man who works. Stop and think about it Timothy P. Paul in Romans 4:5 versus Trent. What would Basil say. Vote for scripture. K

      2. Basil said:

        “But in our opinion, even if none of this harms the account of piety—for virginity was necessary for service in the economy, but inquiring into what happened next out of curiosity should be avoided by reason of its mystery—nonetheless, since lovers of Christ do not accept the opinion that the Mother of God ever ceased being a virgin, we think the following testimonies suffice.”

        Awesome. This again shows the world where the Roman Catholic church found this doctrine calling Mary the mother of God. I often wonder where all these goofy antichrist doctrines originate in history. Timothy K points out often where they originate in Roman Catholic history, but now we can see that this mother of God term came from Basil not scripture.

        Another proof that Roman Catholics put tradition and uninspired writings of Basil higher and of more authority than inspired scripture written by God Himself.

        Further, I saw Basil is their proof text in oral tradition they source for the perpetual virginity of Mary when clearly Basil did not know that the scriptures taught that Jesus had brothers in scripture and one of them James was a prominent leader in the church. In fact, far more authoritative then Peter who disappeared from the church leadership after acts where Paul and James took over leadership.

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/James,_brother_of_Jesus

        We see it is that crazy and evil Jerome who again surfaces to spread the heresy about Jesus having no brothers and James being a cousin. The more we look on history the more obvious St Jerome is the root of antichrist fundamentals and why he is so worshipped by Timothy P and most all Roman Catholics who love tradition over Scripture.

  62. Kevin writes

    “Timothy P said ” the end of the gospel of Mathew ends with Jesus passing on teaching authority to his church” No, not really. Since you now agree with Basil and Me to let scriptures decide, let’s look at what Jesus really said at the end of Matthew. ” all power in heaven and on earth has been given ME ” not the church”

    So far Kevin I let scriptures decide and the scripture point to an authoritative Church and oral tradition. I have already documented that Basil believed in an authoritative oral tradition and the example of Mary’s perpetual virginity is just one example. Now if you can come up with a scriptural passage that denies Church authority or oral tradition please cite the chapter and verse. And of course most of this is just plain common sense. We know that the New Testament was not directly written by Christ, but that his disciples wrote it as they were given by Christ authority to teach, ie written and oral teaching. So let’s look at that entire verse

    “The Great Commission

    16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.””

    Now Kevin if you are going to deny that authority was given to the disciples to teach based on this verse you have undermined the entire New Testament writing. That’s why I asked Walt why he doesn’t accept the Gnostic writings? You can’t separate Christ from his Church and the teaching of that Church oral and written. I asked you specifically where Basil denied an authoritative oral tradition and you gave me no answer. I then gave you quotes from Basil where he obviously acknowledges that authoritative oral tradition along with an example, Mary’s perpetual virginity. I then gave you the same scriptural quote that Basil used to support that authoritative oral tradition and you have no scriptural passages that deny that authoritative oral tradition. To make matters worse, you suggest that Christ , to whom all authority has been given did not share that authority with His disciples, undermining the Scriptures. I’m sorry Kevin, but you just can’t win this argument. You just keep digging yourself a deeper and deeper hole to try and climb out of.

    1. ” you can’t separate Christ from his church” you can’t collapse the head into the body, which your synagogue does. Again, Jesus said all power on earth and in heaven have been given ME. The church can’t replace the uniquely finished work of Christ as the agency of redemption through the acts of the church. The church can pass on his message, carry on his mission, obey Him, but it isn’t a continuing incarnation. The keys were passed to all of us to the extent that when someone who repents and professes faith in Christ, and I or a Pastor tells him his sins are forgiven, its a statement about something already true in heaven, the declaration doesn’t make it true. ” I asked you specifically where Basil denied an authoritative oral tradition ” Basil denies an authoritative oral tradition as you define it in the quote I provided you where Basil says the scriptures are the final infallible interpreter. As Tim I believe also pointed out to you in Iranaeus the same. These so called fathers knew nothing of you magisterium , or a mono episcopacy. They knew nothing of auricular confession, baptismal regeneration, alter Christie, mass sacrifice, Marian ego, and the trinkets and idolatries of the church you defend. This site is full of documented proof. ” You suggest that Christ, to whom all authority has been given did not share that authority with his disciples ” Christ said that all authority in heaven and earth had been given specifically to Him. He sent his disciples into the world to make disciples, baptize, and teach them to obey all ” I commanded to you.”

      1. Kevin, you wrote

        ” I asked you specifically where Basil denied an authoritative oral tradition ” Basil denies an authoritative oral tradition as you define it in the quote I provided you where Basil says the scriptures are the final infallible interpreter. ”

        Kevin, let’s look at the quote and see if we see the word “final”. Kevin wrote

        “Well Timothy P Basil of Caesarea would disagree with you. ” Let God’s inspired scripture decide between us, and in whatever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of Truth.” 330-379 AD””

        Kevin, you saw the word “final” but that word is not there. And even if I was willing to accept the word , the “final infallible interpreter” says we have an authoritative Church and an authoritative oral tradition. In chess I think they call it checkmate!

        1. A vote is final. Did you vote in the recent election. President Trump won, its final. That’s what Basil means. It determines doctrines. Final. And yes I used to play tournament chess, and I believe Basil mated you, smothered mate! K

          1. Kevin, you say it determines doctrines and then you refuse to accept the Scriptural teaching of an authoritative church and an authentic apostolic oral tradition. So you obviously don’t believe what the Bible teaches. Instead you believe in Sola Scriptura which is not taught in the bible and is a man made unscriptural teaching. So give me a bible verse chapter and verse that denies apostolic oral tradition?

            Not to keep piling up on you Kevin but let’s look at another Basil comment on “beliefs and practices”.

            “66. Of the beliefs and practices whether generally accepted or publicly enjoined which are preserved in the Church some we possess derived from written teaching; others we have received delivered to us “in a mystery” by the tradition of the apostles; and both of these in relation to true religion have the same force. And these no one will gainsay—no one, at all events, who is even moderately versed in the institutions of the Church. For were we to attempt to reject such customs as have no written authority, on the ground that the importance they possess is small, we should unintentionally injure the Gospel in its very vitals; or, rather, should make our public definition a mere phrase and nothing more. For instance, to take the first and most general example, who is thence who has taught us in writing to sign with the sign of the cross those who have trusted in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ? What writing has taught us to turn to the East at the prayer? Which of the saints has left us in writing the words of the invocation at the displaying of the bread of the Eucharist and the cup of blessing? For we are not, as is well known, content with what the apostle or the Gospel has recorded, but both in preface and conclusion we add other words as being of great importance to the validity of the ministry, and these we derive from unwritten teaching. Moreover we bless the water of baptism and the oil of the chrism, and besides this the catechumen who is being baptized. On what written authority do we do this? Is not our authority silent and mystical tradition? Nay, by what written word is the anointing of oil itself taught? And whence comes the custom of baptizing thrice? And as to the other customs of baptism from what Scripture do we derive the renunciation of Satan and his angels? Does not this come from that unpublished and secret teaching which our fathers guarded in a silence out of the reach of curious meddling and inquisitive investigation? Well had they learned the lesson that the awful dignity of the mysteries is best preserved by silence”

            Now of course customs or practices can vary depending on location as we saw in the date of Easter celebration. But note Basil says “beliefs and practices” Beliefs such as the real presence in the Eucharist, infant baptism, praying for the dead were uniformly practiced in the universal, ie Catholic Church. Should we look at some more of Basil’s beliefs since you believe Basil was an Episcopalian?

  63. Kevin, I found this statement interesting for someone who apparently believes in Sola Scriptura.

    “”I don’t need a canon list. The 1st century Jews didn’t have a canon list. Genesis didn’t jump up to a 1st century Jew and say, here I am inspired scripture. Yet Jesus expected them to know it. There was an understanding early on of the working books of the NT. The church later on put it in a binder. Thanks allot”

    Now of course the problem is since no inspired writer left us a list of the New Testament canon, while most of the books of the New Testament were universally recognized as authoritative , a number were questioned. I already quoted Augustine’s proposal on how to select the canon, and obviously if you look earlier at Origen’s comments he directly mentions that some books were in question. Origen wrote

    “In the first book of his Commentary on the Gospel according to Matthew, defending the canon of the Church, he testifies that he knows only four Gospels, writing somewhat as follows: “Among the four Gospels, which are the only indisputable ones in the Church of God under heaven, I have learned by tradition that the first written was that according to Matthew, who was once a tax collector but afterwards an apostle of Jesus Christ, who published it for those who from Judaism came to believe, composed as it was in the Hebrew language. Secondly, that according to Mark, who composed it in accordance with the instructions of Peter, who in the catholic epistle acknowledges him as a son, saying, ‘She that is in Babylon, elect together with you, salutes you, and so does Mark, my son.’ And thirdly, that according to Luke, for those who from the Gentiles came to believe. After them all, that according to John.”

    And in the fifth book of his Expositions on the Gospel according to John, the same person says this with reference to the epistles of the apostles: “But he who was made sufficient to become a minister of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit, that is, Paul, who ‘fully preached the gospel from Jerusalem and round about even unto Illyricum,’ did not write to all the churches which he had instructed; and even to those to which he wrote he sent but a few lines. And Peter, on whom the Church of Christ is built, left one acknowledged epistle; possibly also a second, but this is disputed. Why need I speak of him who leaned back on Jesus’ breast, John, who has left behind one Gospel, though he confessed that he could write so many that even the world itself could not contain them? And he wrote also the Apocalypse, being ordered to keep silence and not to write the voices of the seven thunders. He has left also an epistle of a very few lines; and, it may be, a second and a third; for not all say that these are genuine but the two of them are not a hundred lines long.”

    In addition he makes the following statements concerning the epistle to the Hebrews, in his Homilies upon it: “That the character of the diction of the epistle entitled ‘To the Hebrews’ has not the apostle’s rudeness in speech, who acknowledged himself to be rude in speech, that is, in style, but that the epistle is better Greek in the framing of its diction, will be admitted by everyone who is able to discern differences of style. But again, on the other hand, that the thoughts of the epistle are admirable, and not inferior to the acknowledged writings of the apostle, this also everyone who carefully examines the apostolic text will admit.” Further on he adds: “If I gave my opinion, I should say that the thoughts are those of the apostle, but the style and composition belong to someone who remembered the apostle’s teachings and wrote down at his leisure what had been said by his teacher. Therefore, if any church holds that this epistle is by Paul, let it be commended for this also. For it is not without reason that the men of old time have handed it down as Paul’s. But who wrote the epistle, in truth, God knows. Yet the account that has reached us is twofold, some saying that Clement, bishop of the Romans, wrote the epistle, and others, that it was Luke, the one who wrote the Gospel and the Acts.” But let this suffice on these matters.”

    So Kevin, if only “God knows” according to Origen who wrote the book of Hebrews why would you accept this book as part on the New Testament. Is it OK to accept a book into the New Testament if we don’t know who wrote it? In fact where in the Bible does it explicitly state the criteria for inclusion of a book as sacred Scripture?

  64. Kevin wrote

    “You know good and well that your synagogue didn’t have an official canon until Trent, so don’t expect one from me. ”

    Absolutely correct Kevin, when you have an authoritative teaching Church why the rush to establish the canon list. But obviously the early Church did not believe in Sola Scriptura, the man made tradition that you adhere to or they would have settled the issue to begin with. Again just plain common sense. In fact Irenaeus is bold enough to point out that the Gospel can be effectively taken to the barbarians without the “written documents”

    “Those who, in the absence of written documents, have believed this faith, are barbarians, so far as regards our language; but as regards doctrine, manner, and tenor of life, they are, because of faith, very wise indeed; and they do please God, ordering their conversation in all righteousness, chastity, and wisdom”

    Can’t imagine Kevin your believing you could spread the Gospel without the Bible in hand, but when you believe in a teaching Church armed with the authentic oral tradition as Irenaeus did the Gospel message can be spread

  65. Kevin wrote

    “I disagree with Basil on his position on Mary here. Firstborn in Jewish custom meant there are others to follow. Plus scripture said Jesus had brothers not cousins. And Basil is hedging here, the word until is plain, it means after he did have relations with her. Otherwise who bore his brothers. And Mary is never called the Mother of God in scripture, but the mother of Jesus. So Basil in that quote is going beyond scripture,”

    Kevin, St. Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar at that time so if you have some time I suggest you carefully read his “Against Helvidius”. Interestingly Helvidius was scandalizing the Christian community with this novel teaching that Mary had other children. Jerome was asked to intervene.

    1. St Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar at the time. Would that be the same Jerome who wrongly translated repentance to mean do penance and justification to declare righteous to mean to make righteous. The same Jerome who mistakes Latin for Greek. The Jerome who went against orthodoxy by banning marriage for Bishops, advocating chastity merit. Would that be the same Jerome who had nightmares of God punishing him for all the errors he made. That great scholar?

      1. Coming from the guy who claimed to be fluent in Italian your criticism of Jerome is understandable. Kevin could you post all the meanings of the Italian word “convenire” and then post your previous quote.

          1. Thanks Kevin for admitting that

            “Convenire in the Italian dictionary means to agree upon, or to agree”

            Of course previously you wrote

            “I speak fluent Italian which is a Latin language . The word for agree is accordare. The word convenire means to meet with or come together.”

            Obviously this just points out the difficulties of translation as words can have multiple meanings and it’s up to the translator to look into the mind of the writer and make an educated guess as to the point he or she is making.

          2. Timothy P wrote,

            “Obviously this just points out the difficulties of translation as words can have multiple meanings and it’s up to the translator to look into the mind of the writer and make an educated guess as to the point he or she is making.”

            Precisely the point. And a translator’s educated guess is neither determinative nor binding. Multiple translators come up with multiple interpretations, and yet we know from more reliable sources that Irenæus actually disagreed with the church at Rome, and applauded and defended others who disagreed with Rome. Therefore the reading that has Irenæus saying that every church must agree with Rome is not only obviously wrong, but in direct contradiction to what we know to be true about Irenæus. Thus, your citation of Against Heresies, Book III, Chapter III.2 simply cannot be determinative when it comes to Roman primacy as you have attempted to make it.

            Thanks,

            Tim

    2. Timothy P wrote,

      “St. Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar at that time”

      That’s an interesting claim. Do you have any evidence to support that claim?

      You also wrote,

      “Helvidius was scandalizing the Christian community with this novel teaching that Mary had other children”

      Helvidius’ disagreement with Jerome was at the latter part of the 4th century. And yet Fr. Juniper Carol, and expert in mariology, wrote this:

      “Even here, there is no question of proposing Mary’s virginity post partum as an object of dogmatic belief; a fact which should make us less surprised to find in the East, even in the middle of the fourth century, persons, sometimes of considerable authority and prestige, who attributed to Jesus a veritable cortege of brothers and sisters.” (The Perpetual Virginity of the Mother of God, Part II)

      How can Helvidius’ position be considered a “novelty” when even preeminent Mariologist Juniper Carol reports that people attributed to Jesus “a veritable cortege of brothers and sisters” before Helvidius?

      Thanks,

      Tim

      1. Timothy K quoted

        ‘ “even in the middle of the fourth century, persons, sometimes of considerable authority and prestige, who attributed to Jesus a veritable cortege of brothers and sisters.” (The Perpetual Virginity of the Mother of God, Part II)

        How can Helvidius’ position be considered a “novelty” when even preeminent Mariologist Juniper Carol reports that people attributed to Jesus “a veritable cortege of brothers and sisters” before Helvidius?””

        Now I know I am going to get criticized for cutting and pasting Timothy K but maybe you could provide a list of “the middle of the fourth century, persons, sometimes of considerable authority and prestige” who you believe denied Mary’s perpetual virginity and we can compare it with the names and quotes of these Church Fathers. Jerome could hardly be considered to stand alone.

        Mary: Ever Virgin

        The Protoevangelium of James

        “And behold, an angel of the Lord stood by [St. Anne], saying, ‘Anne! Anne! The Lord has heard your prayer, and you shall conceive and shall bring forth, and your seed shall be spoken of in all the world.’ And Anne said, ‘As the Lord my God lives, if I beget either male or female, I will bring it as a gift to the Lord my God, and it shall minister to him in the holy things all the days of its life.’ . . . And [from the time she was three] Mary was in the temple of the Lord as if she were a dove that dwelt there” (Protoevangelium of James 4, 7 [A.D. 120]).

        “And when she was twelve years old there was held a council of priests, saying, ‘Behold, Mary has reached the age of twelve years in the temple of the Lord. What then shall we do with her, lest perchance she defile the sanctuary of the Lord?’ And they said to the high priest, ‘You stand by the altar of the Lord; go in and pray concerning her, and whatever the Lord shall manifest to you, that also will we do.’ . . . [A]nd he prayed concerning her, and behold, an angel of the Lord stood by him saying, ‘Zechariah! Zechariah! Go out and assemble the widowers of the people and let them bring each his rod, and to whomsoever the Lord shall show a sign, his wife shall she be. . . . And Joseph [was chosen]. . . . And the priest said to Joseph, ‘You have been chosen by lot to take into your keeping the Virgin of the Lord.’ But Joseph refused, saying, ‘I have children, and I am an old man, and she is a young girl’” (ibid., 8–9).

        “And Annas the scribe came to him [Joseph] . . . and saw that Mary was with child. And he ran away to the priest and said to him, ‘Joseph, whom you did vouch for, has committed a grievous crime.’ And the priest said, ‘How so?’ And he said, ‘He has defiled the virgin whom he received out of the temple of the Lord and has married her by stealth’” (ibid., 15).

        “And the priest said, ‘Mary, why have you done this? And why have you brought your soul low and forgotten the Lord your God?’ . . . And she wept bitterly saying, ‘As the Lord my God lives, I am pure before him, and know not man’” (ibid.).

        Origen

        “The Book [the Protoevangelium] of James [records] that the brethren of Jesus were sons of Joseph by a former wife, whom he married before Mary. Now those who say so wish to preserve the honor of Mary in virginity to the end, so that body of hers which was appointed to minister to the Word . . . might not know intercourse with a man after the Holy Spirit came into her and the power from on high overshadowed her. And I think it in harmony with reason that Jesus was the firstfruit among men of the purity which consists in [perpetual] chastity, and Mary was among women. For it were not pious to ascribe to any other than to her the firstfruit of virginity” (Commentary on Matthew 2:17 [A.D. 248]).

        Hilary of Poitiers

        “If they [the brethren of the Lord] had been Mary’s sons and not those taken from Joseph’s former marriage, she would never have been given over in the moment of the passion [crucifixion] to the apostle John as his mother, the Lord saying to each, ‘Woman, behold your son,’ and to John, ‘Behold your mother’ [John 19:26–27), as he bequeathed filial love to a disciple as a consolation to the one desolate” (Commentary on Matthew 1:4 [A.D. 354]).

        Athanasius

        “Let those, therefore, who deny that the Son is by nature from the Father and proper to his essence deny also that he took true human flesh from the ever-virgin Mary” (Discourses Against the Arians 2:70 [A.D. 360]).

        Epiphanius of Salamis

        “We believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of all things, both visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God . . . who for us men and for our salvation came down and took flesh, that is, was born perfectly of the holy ever-virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit” (The Man Well-Anchored 120 [A.D. 374]).

        “And to holy Mary, [the title] ‘Virgin’ is invariably added, for that holy woman remains undefiled” (Medicine Chest Against All Heresies 78:6 [A.D. 375]).

        Jerome

        “[Helvidius] produces Tertullian as a witness [to his view] and quotes Victorinus, bishop of Petavium. Of Tertullian, I say no more than that he did not belong to the Church. But as regards Victorinus, I assert what has already been proven from the gospel—that he [Victorinus] spoke of the brethren of the Lord not as being sons of Mary but brethren in the sense I have explained, that is to say, brethren in point of kinship, not by nature. [By discussing such things we] are . . . following the tiny streams of opinion. Might I not array against you the whole series of ancient writers? Ignatius, Polycarp, Irenaeus, Justin Martyr, and many other apostolic and eloquent men, who against [the heretics] Ebion, Theodotus of Byzantium, and Valentinus, held these same views and wrote volumes replete with wisdom. If you had ever read what they wrote, you would be a wiser man” (Against Helvidius: The Perpetual Virginity of Mary 19 [A.D. 383]).

        “We believe that God was born of a virgin, because we read it. We do not believe that Mary was married after she brought forth her Son, because we do not read it. . . . You [Helvidius] say that Mary did not remain a virgin. As for myself, I claim that Joseph himself was a virgin, through Mary, so that a virgin Son might be born of a virginal wedlock” (ibid., 21).

        Didymus the Blind

        “It helps us to understand the terms ‘first-born’ and ‘only-begotten’ when the Evangelist tells that Mary remained a virgin ‘until she brought forth her first-born son’ [Matt. 1:25]; for neither did Mary, who is to be honored and praised above all others, marry anyone else, nor did she ever become the Mother of anyone else, but even after childbirth she remained always and forever an immaculate virgin” (The Trinity 3:4 [A.D. 386]).

        Ambrose of Milan

        “Imitate her [Mary], holy mothers, who in her only dearly beloved Son set forth so great an example of material virtue; for neither have you sweeter children [than Jesus], nor did the Virgin seek the consolation of being able to bear another son” (Letters 63:111 [A.D. 388]).

        Pope Siricius I

        “You had good reason to be horrified at the thought that another birth might issue from the same virginal womb from which Christ was born according to the flesh. For the Lord Jesus would never have chosen to be born of a virgin if he had ever judged that she would be so incontinent as to contaminate with the seed of human intercourse the birthplace of the Lord’s body, that court of the eternal king” (Letter to Bishop Anysius [A.D. 392]).

        Augustine

        “In being born of a Virgin who chose to remain a Virgin even before she knew who was to be born of her, Christ wanted to approve virginity rather than to impose it. And he wanted virginity to be of free choice even in that woman in whom he took upon himself the form of a slave” (Holy Virginity 4:4 [A.D. 401]).

        “It was not the visible sun, but its invisible Creator who consecrated this day for us, when the Virgin Mother, fertile of womb and integral in her virginity, brought him forth, made visible for us, by whom, when he was invisible, she too was created. A Virgin conceiving, a Virgin bearing, a Virgin pregnant, a Virgin bringing forth, a Virgin perpetual. Why do you wonder at this, O man?” (Sermons 186:1 [A.D. 411]).

        “Heretics called Antidicomarites are those who contradict the perpetual virginity of Mary and affirm that after Christ was born she was joined as one with her husband” (Heresies 56 [A.D. 428]).

        Leporius

        “We confess, therefore, that our Lord and God, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, born of the Father before the ages, and in times most recent, made man of the Holy Spirit and the ever-virgin Mary” (Document of Amendment 3 [A.D. 426]).

        Cyril of Alexandria

        “[T]he Word himself, coming into the Blessed Virgin herself, assumed for himself his own temple from the substance of the Virgin and came forth from her a man in all that could be externally discerned, while interiorly he was true God. Therefore he kept his Mother a virgin even after her childbearing” (Against Those Who Do Not Wish to Confess That the Holy Virgin is the Mother of God 4 [A.D. 430]).

        Pope Leo I

        “His [Christ’s] origin is different, but his [human] nature is the same. Human usage and custom were lacking, but by divine power a Virgin conceived, a Virgin bore, and Virgin she remained” (Sermons 22:2 [A.D. 450]

        Now I realize some of these Father came a little later but most of them were during the time period under discussion. So Timothy K, maybe you can give me the list Juniper Carol came up with and the direct quotes that deny Mary’s perpetual virginity.

        1. Timothy P wrote,

          “Now I know I am going to get criticized for cutting and pasting…”

          Yes, you are. All you did was go to a catholic apologetics page, and then cut and paste as usual. You cited Hilary as follows:

          “If they [the brethren of the Lord] had been Mary’s sons and not those taken from Joseph’s former marriage, she would never have been given over in the moment of the passion [crucifixion] to the apostle John as his mother, the Lord saying to each, ‘Woman, behold your son,’ and to John, ‘Behold your mother’ [John 19:26–27), as he bequeathed filial love to a disciple as a consolation to the one desolate” (Commentary on Matthew 1:4 [A.D. 354]).

          But if you had researched this for yourself, you would have understood the context. Hilary had just written in the previous sentence,

          “And yet some very depraved men take from this [Matthew 1:25] the basis of their view that there were many brothers of our Lord as a point of tradition.”

          Let Hilary call them what he will, but the “tradition” to which he refers is the argument from Scripture that Joseph eventually consummated his marriage to Mary. Apparently, some “very depraved men” were arguing from the scriptures that Mary and Joseph had sex and then had more children. In any case, Hilary would not have argued against these “very depraved men” if “this novel teaching,” as you called it, would not be introduced for another thirty years by Helvidius. And you would have known this if you had not resorted to your typical drive-by apologetic.

          In any case, Juniper Carol (who I cited) was referring to the fact that various late 4th century authors were quite busy arguing against a lot of mid-4th century teachers who were teaching, based on the scriptures, that Mary had other kids. Carol’s point (a valid one) is that if late 4th century teachers were arguing against mid-4th century teachers who were teaching about Mary’s other kids, then it is proof that there were people teaching this before Helvidius (383 A.D.), and therefore Helvidius had not introduced “this novel teaching.”

          Thanks,

          Tim

          1. Timothy K,
            Thanks for bringing to my attention that the heresy of Helvidius actually preceded Helvidius by at least 30 years and of course as you also showed it was opposed by Hilary who wrote

            “And yet some very depraved men take from this [Matthew 1:25] the basis of their view that there were many brothers of our Lord as a point of tradition.”

            Now I guess the reason Helvidius is given credit for the heresy is we really don’t know who these other “depraved men” were. So I am trying to find out who these persons “of considerable authority and prestige” were, You quoted Carol

            ” even in the middle of the fourth century, persons, sometimes of considerable authority and prestige, who attributed to Jesus a veritable cortege of brothers and sisters.” (The Perpetual Virginity of the Mother of God, Part II)”

            Now obviously we have a difference of opinion, Hilary calls them “depraved men” and Carol calls the
            persons of “considerable authority and prestige”. But apparently you cannot tell me who they were and what their offices were. And of course I have given you a list of men, a number of whom were bishops of apostolic churches who believed in the perpetual virginity of Mary and according to Irenaeus these are the churches where the truth can be found.
            Timothy K you also wrote

            “Let Hilary call them what he will, but the “tradition” to which he refers is the argument from Scripture that Joseph eventually consummated his marriage to Mary. Apparently, some “very depraved men” were arguing from the scriptures that Mary and Joseph had sex and then had more children”

            Somehow it would appear that an “argument from Scripture” somehow settles the question in your mind but as I am sure you are aware Arius based his Arian heresy on Scripture. In fact those who opposed him did so on both a Scriptural defense and based on the oral tradition in the Church. Jerome’s argument against Helvidius is based on scripture. The tradition that Mary was ever virgin was obviously ingrained into the Christian community judging by the reaction of Hilary and Jerome to those who opposed such teaching. A little common sense, can you imagine Hilary calling those opposed to the belief of Mary’s perpetual virginity as “very depraved men” if they were not teaching contrary to the orthodox faith at that time

      2. I wrote,

        “St. Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar at that time”

        Timothy K responded

        ” That’s an interesting claim. Do you have any evidence to support that claim?”

        Well yes I do. Maybe a little history on St. Jerome might help

        ” St. Jerome (Priest and Doctor of the Church) was one of the greatest scholars in the Church’s history. Thoroughly learned in languages and Scripture, he learned Hebrew in Antioch, from a Jewish rabbi. He then went to Constantinople, where he studied under St. Gregory of Nazianzus. Ordained a priest, from 382-385 he served as secretary to Pope St. Damasus in Rome.

        The pope directed him to produce a Latin version of the Bible. Latin was the language of the common people. Jerome labored a long time on this project, translating the Old Testament from Hebrew and the New Testament from Greek. The finished version was known as the Vulgate — from the Latin vulgus, meaning common, or for common people — and it remained the Church’s official translation for well over a thousand years. He relished the Scripture’s and believed that “Ignorance of Scripture was ignorance of Christ.”

        While in Rome, Jerome became the leader of a group of persons attracted to a penitential life, but his harsh and demanding nature made him many enemies as well as friends, and after Pope Damasus’ death, Jerome returned to the East, followed by St. Paula, St. Eustochium, and others of his disciples.

        They established a religious community in Bethlehem, with a hospice for travelers and a school for children, in which Jerome himself taught Greek and Latin, even as he continued his scholarship. Jerome was uncompromising against heresy, and was known for his fierce temper. His writings were sometimes sarcastic or vitriolic, but at the same time he was gentle with the poor and downtrodden, and his awareness of his weaknesses prompted him to perform great acts of penance — such as living in a cave until his death. His contemporary St. Augustine said of him, “What Jerome is ignorant of, no mortal has ever known.””

        Timothy K, I think his training, the fact that Pope Damasus singled Jerome out to translate the Bible and that a genius like Augustine would write “What Jerome is ignorant of, no mortal has ever known” pretty well sums it up. So Timothy K, who would you say was the greatest biblical scholar at that time and where is your evidence?

        .

  66. Paul says faith comes through hearing the word of God. Those barbarians had no church, but they heard the word of God, believed in the Gospel, and had the laws of God written on their hearts, which they obeyed. Juxtapose that against the ecclesial machinery your church says is necessary for salvation. Churches don’t connect men to God. He comes to them in the gospel when and where the Spirit blows.

    1. Kevin, are you serious

      “Those barbarians had no church, but they heard the word of God, believed in the Gospel, and had the laws of God written on their hearts, which they obeyed”

      Now Kevin, I assume you misspoke. If the barbarians had no church, from whom did they hear “the word of God”?

  67. Timothy P wrote:

    “Kevin, St. Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar at that time so if you have some time I suggest you carefully read his “Against Helvidius”. Interestingly Helvidius was scandalizing the Christian community with this novel teaching that Mary had other children. Jerome was asked to intervene.”

    I just proved my case about how Roman Catholics worship and believe about Jerome. He is the core fundamental teacher of antichrist doctrines.

    1. Walt, I made a very simple statement that Jerome was the greatest biblical scholar of his time so maybe you can tell me who was a more knowledgeable authority then Jerome. Even if you don’t agree with his conclusions you should read his defense against Jovinianus, and I believe you will come to an understanding as to how brilliant he was. I am surprised that you guys hate Jerome so much as he obviously loved the scriptures and spent his entire life focusing on how to translate them correctly. You need to read a synopsis of his life.

      1. Oh by the way Walt, you wrote

        “I just proved my case about how Roman Catholics worship and believe about Jerome. He is the core fundamental teacher of antichrist doctrines.”

        But Jerome wrote

        “I interpret as I should, following the command of Christ: Search the Scriptures, and Seek and you shall find. Christ will not say to me what he said to the Jews: You erred, not knowing the Scriptures and not knowing the power of God. For if, as Paul says, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God, and if the man who does not know Scripture does not know the power and wisdom of God, then ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.”

        Now Walt, is searching the Scriptures an antichrist doctrine? Still waiting on you to agree to debate the real presence in the Eucharist based on Scripture that we started and then you backed out of.

  68. Kevin wrote:

    “You have been taught that the church is the same as Jesus is the world, not true. Sometimes Christ operates in the church, sometimes outside, in the gospel.”

    Kevin can you please share a little bit more about what you mean in the second sentence above? I’m not entirely sure what you mean.

  69. Walt, I actually said that rather clumsily. Yes let me re state it. The church isn’t the same as Jesus in the world. Churches don’t connect us to God. No church owns God. He comes to us in the gospel by His choosing. Sometimes that’s in the church sometimes that outside of the church. Jesus told Nicodemus that the Spirit blows like the wind, where and when He chooses.

  70. Walt, just to add. The Roman church collapses the head into the body. They believe that the church is the natural historical body of Christ. They have two faulty axioms. The nature grace inner connection, namely that grace flows through fallen creation I.e. Mary etc. The second faulty axiom is that the church is an ongoing incarnation, the agency of redemption through the acts of the church. It usurps the finished work of Christ as the agency of Redemptions. But we know that churches aren’t continuing incarnations. The church can’t usurp the uniquely finished work of Christ. It can obey God, pass on his message, carry out his mission, but not replace his atonement thru the acts of the church. Catholics are in a joint co propitiation for their sins. Christ never can seem to get off the cross to save them. But Ephesians 1:7 says we have been redeemed, and He is risen. The gospel is a message about something that has already happened. Frankly in Rome Christ is an eternal victim who can’t get off the cross to save them.

  71. Kevin, I might suggest your definition of church is more in line with the independents. They see the church as a separate entity from location to location and largely comprised of a building environment where people can be saved inside or outside. The Presbyterian view is more that the visible church is one moral person in the world with Christ as the head and sole prophet, priest and king. You might find this book interesting.

    http://www.wtsbooks.com/the-church-of-christ-james-bannerman-9781848715028

    https://www.monergism.com/church-christ-ebook

    http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?seriesOnly=true&currSection=sermonstopic&sourceid=swrb&keyword=Church+of+Christ+%2D+Bannerman&keyworddesc=Church+of+Christ+%2D+Bannerman

  72. “Bannerman’s two-volume Church of Christ is one of the greatest classic treatments of doctrine of the church in the history of the church. He is unashamedly Reformed and distinctively Presbyterian. The church mattered to Bannerman and his work can teach us about why the church should matter to us. James Bannerman was one of the many great luminaries who adorned the Free Church of Scotland in its early years in the nineteenth-century. His work was derived from his course lectures as a seminary professor and was published by his son, Douglas Bannerman.

    “…for those who wish to study the doctrine of the Church in its several aspects as it was held by the majority of the Reformers, Puritans, Covenanters and leaders of ‘The Third Reformation,’ it will prove an invaluable textbook.” – Iain Murray

    “Bannerman’s The Church of Christ is the most extensive, standard, solid, Reformed treatment of the doctrine of the church that has ever been written. It is indisputably the classic in its field.”
    Joel R. Beeke, President of Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan

    “During my seminary training in Edinburgh, I spent long hours plowing my way through James Bannerman’s Church of Christ. There was so much valuable and precious truth in these volumes.
    David P. Murray, Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary

    “Professor James Bannerman taught annually on the doctrine of the church at the New College in Edinburgh until his death in 1868—the same year he finished his masterpiece, The Church of Christ. It was in this great work that Professor Bannerman sought to equip his students for their ‘delicate and arduous task’ as future churchmen. As it was the privilege of those young scholars to receive these words from his lips, it is our privilege to receive them from his pen.
    A. Craig Troxel, Pastor of Bethel Presbyterian Church, and Adjunct Professor of Systematic Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary”

  73. Timothy P, but you really don’t know the context of that quote by Iranaeus. You refuse to you recognize that it was made in the midst of a history of Bishops of Rome petulant wandering into error. Tim gave you the background to that quote and I believe a Catholic expert who said the RC reading wasn’t correct. Bottom line Timothy P, you believe history supports your church as Christ’s church. But the Bible says your church is Antichrist. Who should I go with? Should I go with the RC claim, or should I go with the bible. That’s at the heart of Tim’s question to you. Apart from the historical claim, how would you know? Scripture clearly defines Antichrist. Then it tells believers to reject Antichrist false Christ’s. It then tells them to keep themselves from idols and false gospels. God has always made important things clear in his word. New moons, signs, etc. He has made what Antichrist looks like clear. You just have to look. Most Catholics like yourself aren’t willing to have ingrown eyeballs and look inside. Timothy P, don’t trust the claim you church makes to being the true church, because scripture says its Antichrist. Don’t trust us. Make the plunge, take a look. K

    1. Kevin, you wrote

      “Tim gave you the background to that quote and I believe a Catholic expert who said the RC reading wasn’t correct.”

      Kevin I think you are referring to the following quote Timothy K provided

      “We are far from sure that the rendering given above is correct, but we have been unable to think of anything better. [A most extraordinary confession. It would be hard to find a worse; but take the following from a candid Roman Catholic, which is better and more literal: “For to this Church, on account of more potent principality, it is necessary that every Church (that is, those who are on every side faithful) resort; in which Church ever, by those who are on every side, has been preserved that tradition which is from the apostles.”

      Now Kevin best I can tell from Schaff’s commentary is that the Catholic expert simply provided a different translation of the verse, hardly a declaration that the other translations were incorrect. And the translation provided where “resort “replaces “agree” hardly supports the Protestant position. I’ll post another translation of the verse but still cannot find one that agrees which your and Timothy K’s belief that the word should be translated in context “to meet”. And of course you have admitted that the Italian “convenire” has “agree” as one of it’s meanings, which being fluent in Italian you initially denied.

      Kevin, you also wrote

      ” Timothy P, but you really don’t know the context of that quote by Iranaeus. You refuse to you recognize that it was made in the midst of a history of Bishops of Rome petulant wandering into error”

      Obviously Kevin, the quote should be taken in context , and the immediate context is in the apologetic work “Against Heresies” where I don’t believe Irenaeus ever mentions the “petulant wandering into error” by the Bishops of Rome. Now obviously Irenaeus did not see the Church of Rome “petulant wandering into error” or he would never had wrote

      “2. Since, however, it would be very tedious, in such a volume as this, to reckon up the successions of all the Churches, we do put to confusion all those who, in whatever manner, whether by an evil self-pleasing, by vainglory, or by blindness and perverse opinion, assemble in unauthorized meetings; [we do this, I say,] by indicating that tradition derived from the apostles, of the very great, the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul; as also [by pointing out] the faith preached to men, which comes down to our time by means of the successions of the bishops. For it is a matter of necessity that every Church should agree with this Church, on account of its preeminent authority, that is, the faithful everywhere, inasmuch as the tradition has been preserved continuously by those [faithful men] who exist everywhere.”

      I am fine with substituting “resort ” for” agree” if you would like, it doesn’t change the obvious issue Irenaeus is addressing.

      Kevin also wrote
      “But the Bible says your church is Antichrist. ”

      Kevin, you know that statement is totally dishonest. Please give me the Chapter and verse in the Bible that says the Catholic Church is the Antichrist. You should have written “Based on my interpretation of Scripture and the writings of Timothy K the Catholic Church is the Antichrist”.

      1. Kevin, another translation and in the footnotes apparently a comment is made concerning the translation of “convenire”

        ” Any one who wishes to discern the truth
        may see in every Church in the whole world the
        Apostolic tradition clear and manifest. We can
        enumerate those who were appointed as bishops in
        the Churches by the Apostles and their successors
        to our own day, who never knew and never taught
        anything resembling their foolish doctrine. Had the
        Apostles known any secret mysteries, which they
        taught privately and sub rosa to the perfect, they
        would surely have entrusted this teaching to the
        men in whose charge they placed the Churches. For
        they wished them to be without blame and reproach
        to whom they handed over their own position of
        authority. But as it would be very long in a book
        of this kind, to enumerate the Episcopal lists in all
        the Churches, by pointing out the Apostolic tradition
        and creed, which has been brought down to us by
        a succession of bishops, in the greatest, most ancient,
        and well-known Church, founded by two most
        glorious Apostles, Peter and Paul at Rome, we can
        confute all those who in any other way, either for
        self-pleasing or vainglory, or blindness, or badness,
        hold unauthorized meetings. For with this Church,
        which holds a leading position * among the Churches,

        1 potentior principalitas, not apx’fi, rule, but irpcareiov, pre-
        eminence; cf. 3 John .9, ” Diotrephes, who loveth to have
        the pre-eminence,” (piXoirpurevoov. Some writers see in his

        AGAINST THE HERESIES 85

        it is right that every Church — that is, the orthodox
        who are everywhere * — should agree, inasmuch as
        the Apostolic tradition is always preserved by the
        orthodox who are everywhere.’ 2

        III. 3. 2. ‘ The blessed Apostles after founding and
        building up the Church entrusted the office of bishop
        to Linus. Paul speaks of this Linus in his Epistles
        to Timothy. 3 Anencletus followed him. After him,
        in the third place after the Apostles, Clement was
        appointed bishop. He not only saw the blessed
        Apostles, but also had intercourse with them, and
        had their preaching ringing in his ears and before
        his eyes. He was not alone in this, for there were
        still many left at the time who had been instructed
        by the Apostles. When Clement was bishop a great
        dissension arose in Corinth among the brethren, and
        the Church in Rome sent a powerful letter to the
        Corinthians, urging them to have peace, renewing
        their faith and announcing to them the tradition
        they had lately received from the Apostles. This
        was to the effect that there is one God Almighty,
        Maker of heaven and earth, Creator of man, who
        brought in the deluge, called Abraham, led forth the

        assumption of authority evidence of the monarchical episco-
        pate ! The Greek of this passage is missing. The order in
        the Voss. and Clerm. is Paul and Peter.

        1 The question is what convenire means, to conform or
        to meet? The previous word, colligunt, refers to meeting.
        But this would be a physical impossibility here. ”

        It’s all Greek to me, or should I say Latin, but I still can’t find the word translated as you and Timothy K wish to translate it.,

  74. Tim wrote:

    “Now Walt, is searching the Scriptures an antichrist doctrine? Still waiting on you to agree to debate the real presence in the Eucharist based on Scripture that we started and then you backed out of.”

    Jerome is not considered one of the core and fundamental authors of the antichrist religion because he searched the scriptures. His translation errors and his uninspired writings on celibacy, perpetual virginity and other heresies as identified by the Protestants of his generation prove my case. That is why he is not the greatest of his generation, but actually one who should considered one who was the root cause of the greatest division and separation away from the scriptures and apostles doctrines. This heresy lead to the formation of the Roman Catholic antichrist religion.

  75. Timothy P,

    All this parcing and splitting of words used by mere mortals, who by nature are filled with son and error, is a huge waste of time. You post the same quotes over and over and over again with the same claims that they are your proof that Roman Catholicism is rooted in the authority of Popes and it is the only one true religion. However, no matter how often you are corrected in your errors, you persist in your sins without one shred of humility or seeking forgiveness for your errors. You demonstrate on this blog nearly daily in your posts you have lost all ability to discern, to use logic in reasoning, and appear to suffer from a form of religious brain washing.

    Please take this rebuke out of my love to see you know Christ. Lets start with the most important term of communion for all Christians worldwide. It is the most important fundamental truth that is inerrant and states:

    “An acknowledgment of the Old and New Testament to be the Word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice.”

    Do you hold this statement to be true? If so, you are on the path to unity and uniformity to becoming and true, bible believing Christian.

    In regard to your comment on the Eucharest and a debate. I told you multiple times, but you lack any ability to discern my statements, that debating you on the Eucharest can only be done once I understand how to deal with cults and those who are brain washed. You believe you are 100% accurate in your belief that the Roman Catholic church is the cone true Christian religion built upon the Popes starting with Peter. This is proven by many faithful reformed Christian courts to be an error and history shows the Roman Catholic church to be the most blood stained persecutor of bible believing Christians. This is fact based upon evidence. How can you debate anyone who ignores these truths and facts and evidence? It can only prove that cults have a significant role in shaping the minds of its followers and are not worthy of debate as they lack ability to discern even basic principles.

  76. Walt writes

    “An acknowledgment of the Old and New Testament to be the Word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice.”

    And then asks

    “Do you hold this statement to be true? If so, you are on the path to unity and uniformity to becoming and true, bible believing Christian.”

    On the path to “unity and uniformity”? Are you serious Walt? How many Protestant denominations are there Walt? Your yourself have attacked these Churches, and then claim “unity and uniformity”. And then you accuse me of lacking an ability to discern and “to use logic in reasoning”.
    Now give me the verse from Scripture that states
    “the Old and New Testament to be the Word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice.” Now I want to see Chapter and Verse, especially that word Alone. Yes, the Old and New Testament are the Word of God! Now where does it say that the written tradition is ALONE the infallible rule of faith and practice. Walt what you are teaching is unscriptural and yet you are asking me to believe in it. Go figure.

  77. Timothy P says:

    “Now give me the verse from Scripture that states
    “the Old and New Testament to be the Word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice.” Now I want to see Chapter and Verse, especially that word Alone.”

    Sorry Tim, this typical foolish and ignorant argument does not work. This is the same foolish question I used to demand of protestants when I was just like you, a total uneducated Roman Catholic. They would counter show me one verse that says the pope is the sole vicar of Christ and I could only walk away saying who is the fool that taught me to ask for one verse in scripture that says the bible is the alone rule of faith and practice. Then I would ask where is the word bible in the bible. On and on it would good with these foolish third grade Catholic and Protestant arguments.

    It is a principle Tim and an inerrant truth that is proven in the written. The ignorant and foolish look for a word to prove the word bible is on the bible and the word alone is in the bible and the word pope is in the bible and the words pope is antichrist in the bible.

    That is why you cannot debate using logic, reason and principal truths because you are trained to respond as a catholic like I was with mind control and cult standard replies.

  78. Logic and reason? There are verses in the Bible that directly acknowledge an authority of the Church and oral tradition and Walt you believe in the ultimate authority of the written tradition alone. And that’s logic?
    Now let’s be quite honest. I totally understand that the Catholic Churches history is not without blemish with the treatment of heretics, and especially the recent priest scandal and I can understand why someone would say that Church just cannot be the true church. But when one claims that Catholic teachings are unbiblical or that from an Historical perspective one cannot support Catholic teaching based on Apostolic succession, the teachings of the early Church Fathers then you have to be open for debate. And that is what we are debating. Now from your unwillingness to debate the belief in the real presence after I posted the quotes from the bible supporting that belief it is obvious that you really cannot defend you position. And it gets worse when Catholics start posting quotes from the Church Father’s supporting that belief. Why don’t you think Kevin will not share the quotes from Irenaeus with his friends. Why don’t you share those quotes with your friends and let’s get an “unbiased” opinion.

  79. Timothy P, let me make a second point about your principle that the word of God has no bearing on your traditions. Christ said:

    “Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition….Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.” (Mk. 7:7-9,13)

    You can argue all you want that Jerome said this or Jerome said that, or that some Early Church Father proved that your sacred, oral tradition is rooted the the Roman Catholic Church, and that the “Bible” was not written when your oral traditions were established (which is absolutely untrue and a lie), or that your sacred tradition is equal with or supreme of the Word of God in the Scriptures, etc. etc. The list goes on and on in your postings on this website. All your standard talking points of why your oral tradition is supreme or equal with the Scriptures is foolishness and sinful. You don’t see it because you are firmly filled with pride as a Roman Catholic adherent, and you absolutely reject the idea that God’s Holy, Inerrant, Infallible Word is the Supreme Standard by which all controversies and decisions are to be judged. This simple principle cuts at your heart like a knife and destroys all your oral traditions.

    Christ said:

    “And Jesus answered him, saying, it is written, that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” (Lk. 4:4)

    There is no confusion in this statement. By logic, reason and one’s ability to discern right from wrong, truth from fiction, the verse is clear. Man shall live by the word of God as supreme to all things, even the basic essentials of life.

    This principle is clear spoken by Christ:

    “And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.” (Lk.8:21)

    “But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.” (Lk.11:28)

    There is no room to be confused by the Scripture teaching. The Word of God is supreme to all other forms of knowledge, including your sacred tradition. God is not the author of confusion, but man is the author of confusion.

    Just listen to your arguments here on this blog. Filled with confusion and desperately trying to prove your religion day after day, week after week by hanging its entire foundation on one translation of a word, or trying to prove your Roman Catholic authority all based upon this or that church father who you claim prove your religion is true and real, and has nothing to do with Antichrist.

    You say to Kevin this foolish statement:

    “Kevin, you know that statement is totally dishonest. Please give me the Chapter and verse in the Bible that says the Catholic Church is the Antichrist. You should have written “Based on my interpretation of Scripture and the writings of Timothy K the Catholic Church is the Antichrist”.”

    This again just demonstrates your ignorance, your foolishness and that you are fully deceived by your sin. I myself alone have posted hundreds of quotes and third-party declarations by many ministers, church courts and confessions that identify the Roman Catholic Church as antichrist and the Pope the Man of Sin. These incredibly gifted ministers have proved this using the Word of God as their supreme standard, and then they have used significant evidence from historical testimony by your own Church statements, actions and declarations to validate their biblical arguments.

    Just take this argument between you and I on what authority governs man and Christ’s church alone. I say it is the Scriptures and you immediately attack the argument with the foolish statement prove the word “alone” is in the bible. There are dozens of proof texts that show those who are not brain washed into believing a lie that the Scripture is the alone word of God, and man shall NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE, but by EVERY WORD OF GOD (Matt.4:4, Lk.4:4)

    For you guys, Christ makes it very clear:

    “Jesus answered them and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures, nor the power of God.” (Matt.22:29, Mk.12:24)

    “Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures.” (Lk.24:25)

    “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me….He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” (Jn.5:39, 7:38).

    There is no room for your sacred oral tradition that conflicts with Scripture alone as the supreme standard. This is the principle taught in the Word of God, and it has always been this way. It was this way in the Old Testament, and even more in our generation because these Canon is closed, and the Scriptures are firmly established as a gift from God.

    Antichrist reigns in our day, and you are the defender of antichrist claiming that your sacred oral tradition is supreme to the Word of God, and even if your tradition makes the Word of God of non effect it is ok with you. It is your religion that has taught you this principle. Your in a mind controlled cult that says your tradition is supreme to God, and the Pope is the alone sole Vicar of Christ on earth. The Pope is God sitting in the church temple of God proclaiming that he is God in so many ways. The trail of blood from your religion is real. It is true. It is there for all with eyes to see and ears to hear that murder over this basic principle of God’s word alone is supreme to the Romish Papacy will NOT be tolerated.

    You are the perfect erroring example of this evidence. I quote one basic principle, one term of communion, and you attack it with standard mind control tactics you learned from Rome.

    Repent Tim, learn the Scriptures, flee that religion that has gripped your mind and hear. It is antichrist. This is a fact of Scripture and history.

    1. Walt writes

      ““And Jesus answered him, saying, it is written, that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” (Lk. 4:4)

      There is no confusion in this statement. By logic, reason and one’s ability to discern right from wrong, truth from fiction, the verse is clear. Man shall live by the word of God as supreme to all things, even the basic essentials of life.””

      Walt you and I are in total agreement on that verse. “EVERY WORD OF GOD”. Jesus didn’t say “EVERY WRITTEN WORD OF GOD”, Unfortunately Walt your Protestant bias is so bad that you cite a verse that doesn’t say what you want it to say. So what the apostles wrote was binding but not what they taught orally? And of course St. Paul wrote “Hold fast the traditions which you have been taught whether by word, or our Epistle.” 2 Thessalonians 2:15 ” ” So Walt, a very simple question . Was the oral traditions St. Paul taught the Thessolonians to hold fast to not the Word of God? Yes or No?

      Then to undermine your argument even further you wrote

      ” “This principle is clear spoken by Christ:

      “And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.” (Lk.8:21)

      “But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.” (Lk.11:28)””

      Note Walt, not READ the word of God, but HEAR the Word of God. EVERY WORD OF GOD, not just the written word. Is it really that hard for you to understand?

    2. Walt writes

      “There is no room to be confused by the Scripture teaching. The Word of God is supreme to all other forms of knowledge, including your sacred tradition. God is not the author of confusion, but man is the author of confusion.”

      I agree Walt, man is the author of confusion and it’s called “Sola Scriptura”. It is not biblical and had led to thousands of Christian denominations.

      1. Walt also wrote

        “You can argue all you want that Jerome said this or Jerome said that, or that some Early Church Father proved that your sacred, oral tradition is rooted the the Roman Catholic Church, and that the “Bible” was not written when your oral traditions were established (which is absolutely untrue and a lie), or that your sacred tradition is equal with or supreme of the Word of God in the Scriptures, etc. etc”

        Oral tradition was there from the beginning Walt. You yourself posted when the writings of the New Testament were written. It’s called common sense. And since you have been corrected so many times for false misrepresentations where have I or any other Catholic apologist stated the Oral tradition was supreme to the Word of God?

  80. Timothy P said:

    “Now let’s be quite honest. I totally understand that the Catholic Churches history is not without blemish with the treatment of heretics, and especially the recent priest scandal and I can understand why someone would say that Church just cannot be the true church.”

    You have no idea what you are talking about. My discussions with you are over. You are a major waste of my time. May the Lord correct you and rebuke you in His time for rejecting the gospel of Christ alone, and I pray that rebuke draws you to Him in truth.

    1. Walt, personally I think you have been a great benefit to me, especially your refusal to engage in a scriptural debate over the belief in the Real Presence. While claiming Scripture as your ultimate authority I find it fascinating that you would be unwilling to debate such an important issue rather or not I am the member of a cult or not. Obviously I have had no delusions that I was going to convince you of your errors but hoped I could show others how much stronger the Catholic position is on this extremely important issue then the position you hold. And of course I offered to debate the issue without the aid of the oral tradition clearly established in the writings of the Church Fathers.
      By the way, I have been fascinated with your obsession with the Church of Scotland. What year was that Church first established?

  81. Kevin,

    If you get a chance, listen to this short commentary by one of the best independent historical researchers in bible manuscripts. He will introduce his new film coming out “Antichrist: The Lost Doctrine”

    http://www.noiseofthunderradio.com/show-downloads/

    He discusses how his research into the bible manuscripts turned up this historcist doctrine of the reformers, and how it obviously led to this new documentary he is producing.

    1. Walt stated

      “If you get a chance, listen to this short commentary by one of the best independent historical researchers in bible manuscripts”

      Just for fun I visited the website listed and all I can say is maybe Walt you need to look up the word “independent”. It has been interesting.

  82. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Rom.10:9-10)

    But I say, have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world. But I say, did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you. But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me. But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people. (Rom.10:13:21)

    But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. (Rom.6:17-18)

  83. Kevin, not only were the Scottish and American Covenanters that only Christian denomination to refuse to engage in slavery compared to the Catholics and Baptists, but they drafted the first declaration to establish the true government in America.

    http://www.lettermen2.com/craig.html

    I don’t know if you got a chance to listen to the audio report Pinto did on Paul Ryan and what the Catholic Jesuits have in store for American, but remember that up to 90% of the 18,000 + modern prorestant denominations are in fact Roman Catholic in doctrine, discipline and worship. They differ a little in form of government as they mostly hold a form of papal tyranny at the local church where the sole minister is like the papal vicar of where he lords over his flock refusing any right of appeal of his decisions, while mirroring the Roman pontiff who declares his decisions as final.

    Presbyterians are the only true form of biblical with Christ as sole head of the church as a constitutional monarchy who sits as our King and all teaching/preaching elders, and ruling elders (bishops), and deacons are subject to his sole rule found revealed in scripture. Since your joining the Presbyterian form of church government, you are now part of the oldest and most well established form of church government going back to the apostles and Christ when he was on earth in the new testament era, but all throughout the old testament with as always the prophet, priest and king of his church.

  84. This is a mirror image of what the Roman Catholic Jesuits teach and believe:

    “The duality can perhaps best be illustrated by pointing to Thomas Jefferson. Although Jefferson’s personal piety was not the rule among early Americans, and though many evangelical believers rejected his unorthodox opinions, nevertheless his public philosophy (his religion) became the majority conviction that shaped the structure of public life in America. God functioned in Jefferson’s moral philosophy not as the historical God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, not as the Father of Jesus Christ, Head of the church, and Lord of the world, but as the benevolent Creator who preserves people in this life and judges them according to their moral worth and good deeds. . . .

    “Furthermore, in Jefferson’s view, people are able to be upright, moral servants of society because all have been granted a common moral sense, a conscience, that guides them to know what is good, even if their religious opinions differ in other respects. For Jefferson, a common moral conscience among all people meant that only the truths common to all religions were important. . . .

    “Probably the most important consequence of this religion of public morality was its victorious power over orthodox, evangelical Christianity in the public arena. It lead to the establishing of a civil religion in the United States as both America and the public faith matured. . . .” (James W. Skillen, “The Religion of the Founding Feathers,” sidebar in Mark A. Noll, Nathan O. Hatch, George M. Marsden, David F. Wells, and John D. Woodbridge [editors], Eerdmans’ Handbook to Christianity in America [Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1983], pp. 135-137)

  85. “In contrast, the Covenanting principles teach that religion is not morality. Religion is first covenanting, in keeping with the first table of the Ten Commandments. Morality then follows as a consequence of covenanting.

    It is evident, as shown below, that Thomas Jefferson, in all probability, could not have been unfamiliar with the Mecklenburg Declaration and Alexander Craighead, Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League . . . as they were Carried on at Middle Octorara in Pennsylvania, November 11, 1743, at the time he wrote the Declaration of Independence.

    In 1748 Rev. Craighead wrote Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League . . . as they were Carried on at Middle Octorara in Pennsylvania, November 11, 1743 thus identifying himself with the Covenanting struggle in Scotland.

    In this work Rev. Craighead states “to the Calvinistic system of principles, and the Presbyterian form of government, this nation [the United States] is largely indebted for its civil independence and republican polity. John Calvin and John Knox are the real founders of American liberties. Their teachings, plainly deducible from the Word of God, were disseminated by the persecuted remnant of the Church of Scotland, and were generally incorporated in the structure of American independence.” (Alexander Craighead, Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League; A Confession of Sins; An Engagement to Duties; and a Testimony; as they were Carried on at Middle Octorara in Pennsylvania, November 11, 1743, [Cerlox Bound Photocopy Series. Edmonton, AB, Canada: Still Waters Revival Books])

    W.M. Glasgow states, “Being thoroughly imbued, however, with the principles of Scotch Covenanting, Mr. Craighead taught them to his people around Charlotte. They in turn formulated them into the First Declaration of Independence [Mecklenburg Declaration], emitted at Charlotte, NC, May, 1775.” (W.M. Glasgow in the Introduction to Alexander Craighead, Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League; A Confession of Sins; An Engagement to Duties; and a Testimony; as they were Carried on at Middle Octorara in Pennsylvania, November 11, 1743, [Cerlox Bound Photocopy Series. Edmonton, AB, Canada: Still Waters Revival Books])

    “The New Side Presbytery of New Castle, in 1747, sent the Reverend Samuel Davies as an evangelist to Hanover in Virginia, where the great spiritual hunger and ready response to his message challenged him to settle. Through the efforts of the New Side adherents led by Davies, representing the Presbytery of New Castle, there were settled in the Virginia Colony by 1755 the following ministers: the Reverend Messrs. John Todd of Providence in Louisa County; John Brown of New Providence and Timber Ridge and Alexander Craighead at Windy Cove in Augusta County; Robert Henry in the Caldwell settlement on Cub Creek in Charlotte county and at Briery in Prince Edward County; and John Wright in Cumberland County.” (Howard McKnight Wilson, ThD., The Tinkling Spring: Headwater of Freedom. A story of the church and her people, 1732-1952 (Fishersville, VA: The Tinkling Spring and Hermitage Presbyterian Churches, 1954, pp. 151, 152.)

    “Mr. Craighead is said to have removed to Windy Cove, on Cowpasture River in Augusta County [now Bath County], Virginia, in 1749. A large button wood tree, close to the river bank, marks the site where stood his humble cabin. About half a mile above stood his log church. He and his people went to the House of God fully equipped to meet any sudden attach of Indians. He joined New Castle Presbytery before the Fall of 1754. On Braddock’s defeat his congregation fled from the frontier and a portion settled in North Carolina. Mr. Craighead met with Hanover Presbytery, September 2, 1757(?), and in January was sent to Rocky River, in North Carolina, and to other vacancies. He was called in April to Rocky River, and Mr. Richardson, on his way to labor among the Cherokees, was directed to install him. He died in March, 1766. (Early American Presbyterians website, http://mal.net/EarlyPresbyterians/, January 15, 1999.)

    While living in Augusta (now Bath) County, Virginia, near a settlement called Windy Cove, both Samuel Davis and Alexander Craighead were appointed to the new Presbytery of Hanover which held its first meeting December 3, 1755. It was established as a result of a petition to the New Side Synod of New York on October 3, 1775. (Howard McKnight Wilson, ThD., The Tinkling Spring: Headwater of Freedom. A story of the church and her people, 1732-1952 (Fishersville, VA: The Tinkling Spring and Hermitage Presbyterian Churches, 1954, p. 154.) The Rev. Samuel Davies, who had a big influence on Patrick Henry. Windy Cove was about 90 miles from Hanover, Virginia where Dr. Davies ministered and where Patrick Henry grew up. Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry were contemporaries and knew each other. (See also, Samuel Brown, Windy Cove Church, Its History, A Memorial Sermon, Preached on the 28th of February, 1875. Published by the congregation, Singer’s Glen, Virginia: Ruebush, Kieffer and Co., Printers, 1876, 16 pp.)

    In 1755 Rev. Craighead moved to Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.

    “Another group of pioneers (Ulster Scots) settled nearer the present site of Charlotte and organized the Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church in 1755, with Rev. Craighead serving as pastor of both the Rocky River church and the Sugaw Creek church from the time each was organized until [his death in] 1766. Details of his long, eventful, and sometimes turbulent life are recorded in numerous places, notably The Presbyterian Church at Rocky River, by Thomas Hugh Spence, Jr. (1954) and A History of Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church, by Neill Roderick McCeachy (1954).” ( “Churches,” Charlotte/Mecklenburg Story website, January 11, 1999.)

    The family of Alexander Craighead was prominent in generations to come, as can be seen in Wheeler’s Reminiscences and the documents available from the Charlotte Mecklenburg Story website. ( “Churches,” Charlotte/Mecklenburg Story website, January 11, 1999.)

    “Alexander Craighead’s successor at Rocky River Presbyterian Church was Hezekiah James Balch, who later was one of the signers of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. Joseph Alexander became the second pastor of Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church [his son, John McKnitt Alexander, was chairman of the May 1775 Convention that wrote the Mecklenburg Declaration], to be followed in 1780 by Thomas Craighead, son of Alexander Craighead, supply minister for two years. In 1791 Samuel Craighead Caldwell, grandson of Alexander Craighead, became pastor of Sugaw Creek Church and served two terms spanning 35 years, and in 1837 John Madison McKnitt Caldwell, a great-grandson of Alexander Craighead, served as pastor.” ( “Churches,” Charlotte/Mecklenburg Story website, January 11, 1999.)

    “Over twenty of the members of the Convention at Charlotte, who on May 20, 1775, pronounced the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence, were connected with the seven Presbyterian churches of the county; two of which were Rocky River and Sugar Creek. From these two the other five took `life and being.’ Such were the men, who, when informed of the troubles `to the eastward,’ rallied to the cry: `The cause of Boston is the cause of all!’ With Craighead they held that the rights of the people were as divine as the rights of Kings, for their fathers, and they themselves, had often listened in rapt attention to his thrilling eloquence. . .

    “Abram Alexander, a ruling Elder of Sugar Creek Church, was chairman of this convention. It was addressed by Rev. Hezekiah James Balch, pastor of Rocky River and Poplar Tent, who was also one of the committee of three to draft the `more formal declaration,’ and nine other ruling Elders, of these seven churches, were active participants in the proceedings. Although Rev. Craighead died before the convention of May 20, 1775, at Charlotte, yet the whole American Nation should revere his memory as the fearless champion of those principles of civil and religious freedom, which they now enjoy and which first found expression from his old comrades in the immortal Declaration, the date of which, in the language of another, `has been as clearly established as the given name of any citizen then living in the country.’ (John H. Wheeler, Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians [Columbus, Ohio: The author, 1884], p. 277)

    The committee appointed to draft the Declaration of Independence included Thomas Jefferson, John Adams (a Calvinist, and an acquaintance and correspondent of Jefferson), and Benjamin Franklin, among others.

    When Rev. Alexander Craighead was pastor of Middle Octorara Church along the Susquehanna River in Lancaster County Pennsylvania, he traveled with George Whitefield in Chester County, Pennsylvania. ( Early American Presbyterians website, January 15, 1999.) Benjamin Franklin was a friend of George Whitefield. (Arnold Dallimore, George Whitefield [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1979])

    Benjamin Franklin published two works by Alexander Craighead. First he published Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League; A Confession of Sins; An Engagement to Duties; and a Testimony; as they were Carried on at Middle Octorara in Pennsylvania, November 11. This fact is mentioned by W.M. Glasgow in his introduction to the publication. Glasgow states, “The proceedings were first printed in Philadelphia, in 1744, and re-printed in 1748, evidently by Benjamin Franklin, who editorially, in the Pennsylvania Gazette, refers to the matter.” Benjamin Franklin also published The reasons of Mr. Alexander Craighead’s receding from the present judicatories of this church…, 1743 by Alexander Craighead.

    Therefore, Whitefield, Franklin, Jefferson, and John Adams most probably had personal knowledge of Alexander Craighead, his work, Renewal of the Covenants, National and Solemn League . . . , his ministry, and his Covenanting position. The book received further publicity when Governor Morris of Pennsylvania “in his message to the Assembly, denounced certain people for their aspirations and machinations to obtain `independency’.” (John H. Wheeler, Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians [Columbus, Ohio: The author, 1884], p. 276)

    Thomas Jefferson, living in Charlottesville, Virginia, at the forefront of the resolutioning effort to denounce political ties with Great Britain, is sure to have known about the Mecklenburg Declaration and Resolves adopted in Charlotte, North Carolina, his neighboring state.

    Patrick Henry could have known about Alexander Craighead’s book because, as stated above, his pastor, Rev. Samuel Davies, was a contemporary of Rev. Craighead when Craighead was in Bath County, about 90 miles from the home of Henry. Craighead would have been teaching Scottish Covenanting principles as he did in Middle Octorara, Pennsylvania, and Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. Henry also could have known about the Mecklenburg Declaration thorough his association with his pastor and Craighead’s teaching.

    “A nephew [of Alexander Craighead], Colonel George Craighead, born May 10, 1735, lived near Wilmington Delaware. . . . was the intimate friend of George Washington, `dining at the same table and calling each other by the familiar name of George’.” (John H. Wheeler, Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians [Columbus, Ohio: The author, 1884], p. 279)

    In future generations descendants of Alexander Craighead intermarried with the descendant of John McKnitt Alexander, Chairman of the May 1775 Convention. For example, John Brevard Alexander (1834-1911) was descended from Rev. Alexander Craighead and Mecklenburg patriot John McKnitt Alexander. He wrote History of Mecklenburg County and Reminiscences of the Past Sixty Years. ( “John Brevard Alexander,” Charlotte/Mecklenburg Story website, January 11, 1999.) See Appendix C, “A Sermon by the Rev. Dr. A.W. Miller, delivered at Charlotte, North Carolina, on May 14, 1876.”

  86. It is so terribly sad. The Covenanters founded American and now in our generation Antichrist is taking over our government and religion in America. It is fascinating that some teach that Antichrist does not rule any more.

    Black, George Fraser, Scotland’s Mark on America
    Ranke, the German historian, declared that “Calvin was the founder of the American Government;” and Gulian C. Verplanck of New York (1786-1870), in a public address, traced the origin of our Declaration of Independence to the National Covenant of Scotland. Chief Justice Tilghman (1756-1827) stated that the framers of the Constitution of the United States were through the agency of Dr. Witherspoon much indebted to the standards of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland in molding that instrument.
    Project Gutenberg’s Scotland’s Mark on America
    http://www.gutenberg.org/files/15162/15162-8.txt

  87. Herman, Arthur, How the Scots Invented the Modern World: The True Story of How Western Europe’s Poorest Nation Created Our World and Everything in It. ISBN: 0609606352 9780609606353.

    “`I am a Scotsman,’ Sir Walter Scott famously wrote, `therefore I had to fight my way into the world.’ So did any number of his compatriots over a period of just a few centuries, leaving their native country and traveling to every continent, carving out livelihoods and bringing ideas of freedom, self-reliance, moral discipline, and technological mastery with them, among other key assumptions of what historian Arthur Herman calls the `Scottish mentality.’
    “It is only natural, Herman suggests, that a country that once ranked among Europe’s poorest, if most literate, would prize the ideal of progress, measured `by how far we have come from where we once were.’ Forged in the Scottish Enlightenment, that ideal would inform the political theories of Francis Hutcheson, Adam Smith, and David Hume, and other Scottish thinkers who viewed `man as a product of history,’ and whose collective enterprise involved `nothing less than a massive reordering of human knowledge’ (yielding, among other things, the Encyclopaedia Britannica, first published in Edinburgh in 1768, and the Declaration of Independence, published in Philadelphia just a few years later). On a more immediately practical front, but no less bound to that notion of progress, Scotland also fielded inventors, warriors, administrators, and diplomats such as Alexander Graham Bell, Andrew Carnegie, Simon MacTavish, and Charles James Napier, who created empires and great fortunes, extending Scotland’s reach into every corner of the world.
    “Herman examines the lives and work of these and many more eminent Scots, capably defending his thesis and arguing, with both skill and good cheer, that the Scots `have by and large made the world a better place rather than a worse place.’ — Gregory McNamee “Arthur Herman, author of THE IDEA OF DECLINE IN WESTERN HISTORY and JOSEPH McCARTHY: REEXAMINING THE LIFE AND LEGACY OF AMERICA’S MOST HATED SENATOR, received his doctorate in history at Johns Hopkins University. He is the coordinator of the Western Heritage Program at the Smithsonian Institution, an associate professor of history at George Mason University, and a consulting historical editor for Time-Life Books. He lives in Washington, D.C.” — Publisher’s Annotation

  88. “Oral tradition was there from the beginning Walt” John 1:1 ” In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Michael Horton says we can speak of the Word and the written word in the same respect because the written word’s whole point is to Christ. This traditions Paul speak of were those that were delivered. The verb is past. That tradition is transmitted to us through the scripture. It’s the reason Basil makes scripture the judge of all things. It is the reason Roman Catholicism ‘ s claims must pass through this fire no matter what the claim of their leaders.

    1. Amazing Mark, I loved to listen to Hank Hangraaff on the radio and learned a lot. Unfortunately they did not have enough local support to keep the program going and I really missed him when they went off the air. Very intelligent guy.

  89. Michael Horton said this about whether Eastern Orthodoxy and Evangelicalism are compatible? No. ” Any view of union and recapitulation that denies the sole basis for divine acceptance o f sinners is the righteousness of Christ and the sole means of receiving this righteousness is imputation thru faith alone apart from works is a denial of the gospel. Timothy P said ” very intelligent guy.” Obviously deceived.

    1. Kevin, of course Eastern Orthodoxy and “Evangelicalism” as you apparently perceive it are not compatible. That’s what makes Hank Hangraaff’s joining the Eastern Orthodoxy Church so fascinating. I don’t have the time to find out about his conversion but I agree with Timothy Kauffman it sounds like the first move to joining the Catholic church. The original “Bible Answer Man” was Walter Martin who used to debate Catholic apologist such as Father Mitch Pacwa over Catholic doctrinal issues. I would love to here Mr Hangraaff’s reasoning for leaving “Evangelicalism”!

  90. “Easter Is Not Biblical – It Is A Superstitious Pagan and Roman Catholic Holy Day (Free MP3s, Books, etc.)

    Scroll down for free Reformation resources (MP3s, books, etc.) against Pagan and Roman Catholic holy days like Easter.

    A search for the word “Easter”, using the Master Search index on the Puritan Hard Drive, brings up 7,325 results in 662 documents, all of which gives you the search term in the context of one line (under each book title in which they are found) — and when you click on this line the Puritan Hard Drive opens the correct book, to the correct page, and highlights your search term. There are also 112 Reformed resources under the category “Holy Days (Lord’s Day, Christmas, Easter, etc.)” and 25 resources with the word “Easter” in the title on the Puritan Hard Drive.

    “But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”

    – Matthew 15:9

    “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

    – Ephesians 5:11

    “For God is not worshiped of us, but when it is his will to accept our worship: and it is not his will to accept our worship, but when it is according to his will.”

    – William Perkins (Puritan), A Golden Chain, or the Description of Theology

    “Our Easter day, our Ascension day, our Whitsuntide is every Lord’s day.”

    – Richard Greenham, Works, p. 421

    “It is commonly objected, that we may as well keep a day for the nativity, as for the resurrection of Christ. We have answered already, that Christ’s Day, or the Lord’s Day, is the day appointed for remembrance of his nativity, and all his actions and benefits, as well as for the resurrection.”

    – David Calderwood (Covenanter), emphases added

    “All human inventions which are set up to corrupt the simple purity of the Word of God, and to undo the worship which he demands and approves, are true sacrileges, in which the Christian man cannot participate without blaspheming God, and trampling his honour underfoot.”

    – John Calvin, emphases added

    “Easter is the principal feast of the ecclesiastical year. (Pope – ed.) Leo I (Sermo xlvii in Exodum) calls it the greatest feast (festum festorum), and says that Christmas is celebrated only in preparation for Easter. It is the centre of the greater part of the ecclesiastical year. … The first Vespers of Easter are connected now with the Mass of Holy Saturday. … To have a correct idea of the Easter celebration and its Masses, we must remember that it was intimately connected with the solemn rite of baptism. The preparatory liturgical acts commenced on the eve and were continued during the night. When the number of persons to be baptized was great, the sacramental ceremonies and the Easter celebration were united.”

    – The Catholic Encyclopedia, “Easter” Article, emphases added

    “We are the Easter people.”

    – Pope John Paul II

    “Therefore Easter is not simply one feast among others, but the “Feast of feasts,” the “Solemnity of solemnities,” just as the Eucharist is the “Sacrament of sacraments” (the Great Sacrament).”

    – Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church, Second Edition, #1169, emphases added

    “In 1899, the General Assembly of the PCUS was overtured to give a ‘pronounced and explicit deliverance’ against the recognition of ‘Christmas and Easter as religious days.’ Even at this late date, the answer came back in a solid manner: ‘There is no warrant in Scripture for the observance of Christmas and Easter as holydays, rather the contrary (see Gal. 4:9-11; Col. 2:16-21), and such observance is contrary to the principles of the Reformed faith, conducive to will-worship, and not in harmony with the simplicity of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.'”

    – Kevin Reed, Christmas: An Historical Survey Regarding Its Origins and Opposition to It (Free Online Book), emphases added

    “When the Puritans came to power in England, attention was repeatedly given to Christmas. In 1644, December 25 fell upon a day previously scheduled for a monthly fast. The Parliament debated the issue and resolved to observe the day with fasting and prayer, especially due to the present circumstances of the nation. In June 1647, Parliament passed legislation abolishing Christmas and other holidays: ‘Forasmuch as the feast of the nativity of Christ, Easter, Whitsuntide, and other festivals, commonly called holy-days, have been heretofore superstitiously used and observed; be it ordained, that the said feasts, and all other festivals, commonly called holy-days, be no longer observed as festivals; any law, statute, custom, constitution, or canon, to the contrary in anywise not withstanding.'”

    – Kevin Reed, Christmas: An Historical Survey Regarding Its Origins and Opposition to It (Free Online Book), emphases added

  91. Why No Christmas Or Easter? by David Silversides (Web, Article)

    Easter: The Devil’s Holiday by Dr. C. Matthew McMahon (Web, Article)

    “Easter has little to do with real Christianity. Does that surprise you? It should not. For example, Easter was not popular with the Puritans or the Pilgrim settlers in America. Neither Puritans or Pilgrims had use for ceremonies associated with religious festivals invented in either pagan history, or reinvented by Roman Catholicism. In actuality, here in the America’s only after the bloodshed Civil War did Easter “begin again” to be accepted.” Read More: http://www.apuritansmind.com/the-christian-walk/easter-the-devils-holiday-by-dr-c-matthew-mcmahon/

    Easter: A Satanic, Demonic, Pagan, Roman Catholic Holy Day Which God Abhors (A Violation of the Second and Fourth Commandments) by Dr. C. Matthew McMahon (Free MP3, 26 minutes)

    http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=82208104080

    Easter, Lent, Christmas, And The Cross (Pagan/Roman Catholic/Antichrist Holy Days [Holidays] In The Church, Family, And Society) by Ergatees (Free MP3)

    Christian Opposition To Man-Made Holy Days (Christmas, Easter, etc.) In Vain They Do Worship Me, Teaching Doctrines Of Men by James Gilfillan

    http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=9180521859

    Presbyterians Do Not Observe Christmas, Easter, etc. (A Reformation Argument Against Popish Holy Days) by Samuel Miller (Free MP3)

    http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=91805205440

    Reasons Against Festival Days, Christmas, Easter, Etc. (By the Perth Assembly) by David Calderwood (4 Free MP3s)

    http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=51107133713

    Many of the same biblical arguments against Antichrist’s “Christ-mass”, especially those form the second commandment (the regulative principle of worship or the sovereignty of God over worship and the fourth commandment (the Lord’s Day or the sovereignty of God over our use of time), also apply the Easter.

    Reformation Worship, the Regulative Principle, Iconoclasm, etc. (Free Reformation Resources For Calvinism In Worship, Against Arminianism In Worship)

    Christmas Is Part Of Roman Catholic (Papacy/Antichrist) Missionary Strategy And High-Handed Idolatry (SWRB Blog)

    Much needed preaching in our day, when many Protestants worship more like Roman Catholics than like the best Reformers. This sermon contains much important Scriptural and historical information. On this topic George Gillespie (a Scottish Covenanter and Westminster Divine), in his classic work, A Dispute Against the English Popish Ceremonies Obtruded Upon the Church of Scotland, writes, “Forasmuch then, as kneeling before the consecrated bread, the sign of the cross, surplice, festival days (Christmas, Easter, etc.-ed.), bishopping, bowing to the altar, administration of the sacraments in private places, etc., are the wares of Rome, the baggage of Babylon, the trinkets of the whore, the badges of Popery, the ensigns of Christ’s enemies and the very trophies of Antichrist: we cannot conform, communicate, and symbolize with the idolatrous Papists, in the use of the same, without making ourselves idolaters by participation.”

  92. The ruler of the world at that time Constantine in Rome was dealing with savage marauding tribes all around him so he mixed the religion to marry together as best he could the two most important solstice moments of the calendar December 24th and the April equinox. He invents the word Christmas and merges two other pagan holidays with the self-invented birthday of Jesus Christ. Constantine invents the Easter holiday to coincide with the French celebration of Marti raw which is a drink and gluttony binge ending in fat Tuesday where some pagans where supposed to die from celebration which is where Constantine coupled with the RCC so conveniently invents Ash Wednesday.
    You have to go way back however to trace the lineage of these days of celebration. Nimrod worshiped the sun god and started tree/fire worship. Baal and the grove (idolatry) was brought into northern Israel which brought in the sword, plague & pestilence wrath of God in 723. Southern Juda got corrupted as well. Aphelia killed all her grandsons but missed one. She brought the fire mass and tree worship (this is the grove worship or Venus fertility Goddess, sex Goddess, Fire worship, tree worship forbidden by God in Jerimiah) into Juda. God then scatters all Jews and their pagan gods- Shegods Molecks Ashteroth. They are scattered across the middle east and Mesopotamia. They inner married from Solomon 1,000 wives and brought in tree worship and sun worship spread. Feast of Saturn Dec 17-24 A daughter descendent of Cain went into the Noah’s Ark and she brought the Idolatry of the Garden to Babylon which was Hercules (son God) Venus (tree God). The beast is a world ruling system. Christmas is the God of man which is self. Idolatry is to worship what you look at. Deuteronomy 16:21 commands the Israelites not set up any wooden Asherah poles of their own. Two books later, In Judges 3:7, “The sons of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgot the LORD their God and served the god Baal and the Asheroth. King of Northern Israel Ahab married Jesabaal. Here is where the corruption furthered. The worship of Baal in Judges was put down in the book of Solomon but Salomon allowed his wives to keep the Baal worship. This is the old Cannonite Idolatry. This is how it gets down to Judda. The Lebanon’s were Phoenicians . The Eagle, Lion and Fish were on the coins and eating human flesh from human sacrifices were offered up to Baal in the valley of Tofed also in the valley of Mohap all to conquer the winter season (darkness) until Easter- the resurrection of Tamos. This is the old Cannonite idolatry. Venus was worship in the form of a cone the shape of a tree or the white pyramid. This was sex worship. The female tree the female triangle of a virginal. They put a star above it and rose it up on a platform. Sex worship. The fertility God

    Gog is the chief prince of Mesheck & Tubal which is satan or Islam. Mesheck & Tubal was in Babalon & Persia.
    Nebakinezer scattered the Jews b/c they went after the Baal & Tree God fertility gods of Sun/Saturn and Venus/fire/tree worship and gave up Abrahams God b/c Baal didn’t require any sabbatical years. Plant no crops every 7 years was Abrahams sabbatical law and that’s what these pagan Jews hated. Constantine renamed the same fire worship Saturn Baal god and mixed it into the church calling it Christmas. Christmas has to do with the beast and the 70 weeks of Daniel. Dec 25 is birthday of the demons where on this day they would distribute fortunes just like the pagan fire tree worship and where we got the idea of putting presents under the Christmas tree. The tree that gives life. The tree is the emblem on the flag of Liberia.

    After the fall of Babalon, king Zerkzies decrees the 70 weeks of Daniel to rebuild Jerusalem and the Temple. The Bull, the Bear, the Leopard are on the coins of those days. Most of the Jewish world is speaking the Greek culture after Alexander the great conquered all. They are not speaking Hebrew anymore. Israel was scattered. Translate the law from Hebrew to Arabic or Aramik. Translator would put spin on it and wouldn’t put it writing so as not to be literally caught falsifying Hebrew scripture. After 400 years in Egypt under the Mosaic law, Jews are speaking dialect of the Greek street language.

    God in the Old Testament condemns all of these Cannonite gods yet they are the root of what the Rome bacterized itself into. In ancient times the Sun god was looked upon as a distribution god that would distribute the fortunes of the land to the people because in ancient times the people were freaked out at the arrival of the winter season and the darkness and cold that came along with it and were despaired at the possibility that spring may not ever return meaning no more crops and hence death & famine. The fact that spring did return was looked upon as a gift from the Saturn god which is sun worship and which is what Rome become. Constantine also ushered in all the pagan vestments and some pagan images into the church of Rome that soon invented transubstantiation to mirror the human flesh eating at the altar ritual of Gaal.

  93. Timothy P, you wrote,
    “…you have to look at all the evidence.”

    Did that history of Gog the chief prince of Mesheck & Tubal and how Constantine dealt with it add a little perspective to your lens? Thank God for the Good News and the resurrected life we now live. Your real identity.

  94. Brad, did you really look at all of the evidence concerning the celebration of Easter. I am going to give you a chance to correct your mistakes and see what you come up with.

  95. Regarding the tree stump that symbolized the death of Nimrod because he had been cut down, are you really unaware of the new tree growth claimed to have been discover 40 days after the winter solstice which came out of this tree stump? That new tree growth symbolized the resurrection of the death of Tammuz (the name given to worship the name of Nimrod’s deceased son). They believed Tammuz was resurrected as Nimrod. Ishtar”, which is pronounced “Easter” was a day that commemorated this resurrection all because of a tree that grew out of a stump which so conveniently fall on the spring Equinox. Well, well what do we have here- Ishtar rhymes with Easter so Constantine invents his own version. I am going to give you a chance to cite NT verses about the date of the Spring Equinox and its relevance to Christ Jesus’ resurrection.

    Many thanks, /Brad

    1. Brad, your article might have made some sense if Constantine had invented Easter as you said. The only problem is you apparently were unaware of the
      Quartodecimens controversy over the date of celebrating Easter that clearly establishes that the apostle John celebrated Easter. You wrote

      “Constantine invents the Easter holiday to coincide with the French celebration of Marti raw which is a drink and gluttony binge ending in fat Tuesday where some pagans where supposed to die from celebration which is where Constantine coupled with the RCC so conveniently invents Ash Wednesday.”

      Now if you google Polypcarp and the Easter controversy you will find many discussions on the Quartodeciman’s Controversy over the celebration of the timing of the Easter celebration, Let me quote a brief summary

      “The controversy involved three events: the controversy between Polycarp, the bishop of Smyrna, and Anicetus, the bishop of Rome, that occurred around A.D. 155; the more heated controversy between Polycrates, the bishop of Ephesus, and Victor, the bishop of Rome, that broke out around 195; and the decree of Constantine following the Nicene Council in 325.

      Scholars disagree about the controversy’s details. They do agree that its arguments revolved around whether the primary Christian spring festival should happen on a day of the month (Nisan 14, the Passover day) or on a day of the week (Sunday).

      Eusebius is our primary source for the controversy between Polycarp and Anicetus. Polycarp knew the apostle John and was of such stature that many considered him John’s spiritual, though not apostolic, successor in Asia Minor. Polycarp believed that Nisan 14 was the correct time for the spring festival, but Anicetus, bishop of Rome, favored Sunday.

      An annual Lord’s Supper was not the issue, neither was Easter, or at least what we think of as Easter. No one was arguing that the Lord’s Supper should only be kept once a year. No one was arguing over Easter bunnies and colored eggs.

      Furthermore, none of the Quartodecimans claimed that it was wrong to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. To the contrary, the evidence indicates that both Polycarp and Anicetus celebrated Jesus’ resurrection annually. Polycarp’s claim seems to have been that the best day to do so was on Nisan 14. Anicetus argued for Sunday.

      What is more intriguing for us is that Polycarp claimed his practice came from the apostle John. In other words, the practice of celebrating Jesus’ resurrection on Nisan 14 was an apostolic practice, at least for the apostle John. His argument was not so much scriptural as it was traditional.

      Eusebius, in his Ecclesiastical History, chapters 23 to 25, makes it plain that the Quartodeciman controversy involved in part when to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. He tells us that the churches in Asia Minor, focusing on the crucifixion as of primary importance, argued for Nisan 14 as the day to commemorate the entire story of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. The church at Rome, focusing on the resurrection, argued that there was no need to depend on the Jewish calendar and that Sunday was the most appropriate day of all.”

      So Brad, Polycarp informs us that the apostle John was celebrating Easter, maybe you can explain how that is possible if “Constantine invents the Easter holiday”? You need to look at all the evidence!

  96. I would be happy to take a stab at explaining this deception which is meant is to deceive all who truly desire to honor their Maker on the “Lord’s Day” or the seventh-day Sabbath. Just like the attention that is diverted from the truth that Saturday itself is a counterfeit which honors the cruelest, most blood-thirsty of all the gods: Saturn. Honor and worship is thus stolen from the Creator and given to His enemy. In much the same way you have counterfeit days of December 25th and the first full moon after the spring equinox being celebrated but this is Timothy Kauffman’s forum so lets respectfully yield the floor to Tim.

  97. Explanatory Dialogue

    FRANZ: I sure am glad I saw that the meaning of Scripture compelled me to study the Westminster Confession of Faith with you. These past few months have been amazingly enlightening and edifying!

    HANS: I’m very pleased to hear that. Your diligence and eagerness have been an encouragement and motivation to me, and to others.

    F: Actually, I’ve been thinking of joining your church for some time now. I got a copy of your terms of communion, and they looked really good at first.

    H: At first?

    F: Well. . . yeah. Then I had some discussions with a friend of mine — a really sharp fellow — who’s a member of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America. They call themselves ‘Covenanters’, too.

    H: And he put some doubts in your mind?

    F: Yeah. Actually, when I told him about your church, he said he already knew of you; he called you ‘Steelites’. I asked him why, and he said that David Steele and some others caused a schism about 150 years ago when they separated from what is now the RPCNA to form ‘The Reformed Presbytery’. He said that the doctrines and terms of communion they — and you — adopted will forever perpetuate that schism.

    H: Oh? How so?

    F: He said you were basically Papists, putting uninspired works on a par with the Bible and then abusing your church authority by requiring faith in the church, rather than in the word of God.

    H: That’s no new charge. Did he substantiate it? How much of Steele has he read?

    F: I don’t know; I didn’t think to ask, I was so confused at the time. We went through the six terms and I took notes. Can you and I go through them? Maybe you can answer his objections.

    H: Sure, I’d be happy to try. Let me grab some books first. . . okay, shoot.

    F: All right. Well, neither he nor I had any problems with the first term — “an acknowledgement of the Old and New Testament to be the word of God, and the alone infallible rule of faith and practice” — or the sixth term — “practically adorning the doctrine of God our Savior by walking in all his commandments and ordinances blamelessly.” No true Christian can deny those. He said he agreed in general with the second — “that the whole doctrine of the Westminster Confession of Faith, and the Catechisms, Larger and Shorter, are agreeable unto, and founded upon, the Scriptures” — but that there were a few things in the Confession he couldn’t swallow.

    H: Like what?

    F: He said they imbibed the Erastianism of their day, showing this by their giving far too much authority to the civil government in matters of religion; especially in Chapter 23, Section 3.

    H: The writings of the Westminster divines certainly don’t support such an unwarranted conclusion. Fact is, they (except for two or three of them) ardently opposed Erastianism! They didn’t believe the civil government had any power in matters of religion, but only about matters of religion. The wording of the very section of the Confession in question makes this clear: “The civil magistrate may not assume to himself the administration of the word and sacraments, or the power of the keys of the kingdom of heaven.”

    F: Yeah, I know. I pulled out my copy of The Divine Right of Church Government — Jus Divinum Regiminis Ecclesiastici, and showed him the section against Erastianism, chapter 9. He quieted down and asked if he could borrow it. I also showed him my Harmony of the Protestant Confessions, where it’s clear that the Westminster Confession says essentially the same thing as all the other reformed creeds.

    Otherwise, he agreed with me that it’s not sufficient to have only a profession of the truth of the Bible as a term of communion, but that some creed is necessary. He said if we don’t have a creed, virtually all heretics would be able to be members, because they all profess the truth of the Bible. Just like you and I discussed before, that it’s not just the bare words of Scripture, but their meaning, that we need to uphold.

    H: I’m glad he sees that; a lot of people don’t. It’s also good that he’s willing to do some reading and rethink his assertions. That speaks well of him. What else did he, or do you, have problems with?

    F: He didn’t say too much about the third term — “that Presbyterial Church Government and manner of worship are alone of divine right and unalterable; and that the most perfect model of these as yet attained, is exhibited in the Form of Government and Directory for Worship, adopted by the Church of Scotland in the Second Reformation” — except to criticize how caught up the Steelites are with the church of Scotland at the time of the Second Reformation. I actually read through the Form of Government and the Directory for Worship a couple of times. I have some points I want to clarify, but I thought they were good and I didn’t have any real concerns. I find it interesting that the adopting act of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland actually makes a point about sitting at a table for the Lord’s Supper, that it’s not optional.

    H: Yeah, I find it very telling as to how precise they were. You know George Gillespie wrote that adopting act?

    F: Really!

    H: Not surprising; he argues for the practice in his Miscellany Questions and in English Popish Ceremonies. Anyway, how about the 4th term — “that public, social covenanting, is an ordinance of God, obligatory on churches and nations under the New Testament; that the National Covenant and the Solemn League are an exemplification of this divine institution; and that these Deeds are of continued obligation upon the moral person; and in consistency with this– that the Renovation of these Covenants at Auchensaugh, 1712, was agreeable to the word of God”?

    F: Here’s where he started to get more animated, though the worst was over the 5th term. He asked me how Steelites could say that the United States was still bound by the Solemn League and Covenant, since we declared independence from England in 1776.

    H: What did you say?

    F: I didn’t know what to say. Do you think the United States is still obligated by this covenant?

    H: Sure. Did Israel cease to be under her covenant obligations when she split from Judah? Was she no longer bound not to exterminate the Gibeonites, for example?

  98. F: Well, I guess she was still under her covenant obligations. But wasn’t that an unlawful split? Ours was lawful — Britain had flagrantly and habitually violated her agreement with us.

    H: At this point, I’m not completely sure, given what God promised to Jeroboam in I Kings 11. But let’s assume Israel’s split wasn’t lawful. If the Jews would have started other nations — national offspring — would these new nations be bound to the national covenants of Israel their mother?

    F: Perhaps. . . but they’d still be separate nations. Why should one nation be bound to something another nation is bound to?

    H: Let’s take some other examples and maybe they’ll make it more clear. Were the Rechabites (in Jeremiah 35) bound by their father’s covenant (dwelling in tents, drinking no wine, etc.)? After all, they were separate individuals.

    F: Yes, but that was a family, not a nation.

    H: True, but God views the nations as moral persons.

    F: What do you mean?

    H: I mean that in God’s eyes, a nation has an individual character, a moral character, separate from the individuals of which she is composed. Thus, not only are her individual members bound to own God as their God, love righteousness and hate evil, etc., but she as a nation, in her official character, is also to do these things. Furthermore, she can and should, as a nation, enter into covenant with God. And since she continues to exist as a nation even though the individuals comprising her populace die, and new generations spring up, her covenant bonds made by leaders in previous generations are still binding, because she — as a nation, the party originally covenanting with God — still lives.

    F: Hmmm. . . sounds plausible. Is there any scriptural proof?

    H: Oh, yes — lots. Take just a couple examples. In Genesis 50, Joseph required an oath of the children of Israel, to carry his bones up out of Egypt when God would bring them out. Yet those taking the oath died, too, and it was a long time after that that Moses led them out — and he brought Joseph’s bones because he saw the oath as perpetually binding. In fact, the Holy Spirit deemed it so important that he draws our attention to it in Exodus 13:19, in the midst of all the flurry of activity and wonder in their exodus. Another example is Joshua’s covenant with the Gibeonites, his promise not to kill them. Saul broke this promise a few hundred years later, and the punishment came in David’s time. No other view can explain this adequately.

    F: Okay, I agree; but we’re still talking about the same nations, not new nations.

    H: True, but we need to consider that the original nations taking the Solemn League and Covenant viewed not only England, Scotland and Ireland to be bound, but “all his Majesty’s Dominions” to be bound as well — see The Acts Of The Generall Assemblies Of The Church Of Scotland: From the Year 1638 to the Year 1649 Inclusive, 4 June 1644, Session 7, “The Letter from the Synod of Divines in the Kirk of England, to the General Assembly”, pp. 231, 232. Now, at that time “all his Majesty’s Dominions” included the American colonies. In fact, the founding fathers explicitly referred to themselves as such — as one of his Majesty’s dominions.

    But even more to the point, can’t nations, as moral persons, have offspring? After all, the church, as a moral person, has offspring (Rev. 12:1-2,17). So does the whore church of Babylon (Rev. 17:5).

    F: I suppose so. But are the offspring of the church bound by their predecessors’ covenants?

    H: Are my children bound by the covenant obligations I made on their behalf, as their representative head, in baptism? Were the Rechabites bound by their father’s covenant?

    F: Oh, yeah. And I just remembered Deuteronomy 5:3: “The LORD made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.” Yet it’s clear from other passages, like Exodus 6, that he did make a covenant with that earlier generation.

    H: Right. Also, the Solemn League and Covenant itself says “that we, and our posterity after us, may, as brethren, live in faith and love, and the Lord may delight to dwell in the midst of us. . . . we shall each one of us, according to our place and interest, endeavour that [the three kingdoms] may remain conjoined in a firm peace and union to all posterity.” As we’ve already noted from the Acts of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland at that time, their “posterity” was not restricted to those living in the British Isles. Consider also another quote from those Acts:

    Albeit the League and Covenant be despised by that prevailing party in England, and the Work of Uniformity, thorow [through] the retardements and obstructions that have come in the way, be almost forgotten by these Kingdoms, yet the obligation of that Covenant is perpetual, and all the duties contained therein are constantly to be minded, and prosecute by every one of us and our posterity, according to their place and stations. . . . The Acts Of The Generall Assemblies Of The Church Of Scotland: From the Year 1638 to the Year 1649 Inclusive, 27 July 1649, Session 27, “A seasonable and necessary Warning and Declaration, concerning Present and Imminent dangers, and concerning duties relating thereto; from the Generall Assembly of this Kirk, unto all the Members thereof”, p. 460.

    It deserves emphasizing that if we reject this principle of covenantal headship, or representation, we make much of the Bible unintelligible, and we overthrow biblical presbyterianism, as I noted in the example of baptism.

    F: All right. So, I believe that “public, social covenanting, is an ordinance of God, obligatory on churches and nations under the New Testament.” Why are only the National Covenant and the Solemn League and Covenant here mentioned? There were a lot of other covenants during the reformation. My friend brought up the Steelite ‘obsession’ with the Church of Scotland again here.

    H: Is your friend aware of his own church’s history? Perhaps he’d be interested to know that these ‘Steelite’ Terms of Communion are essentially the same as what his own denomination used to maintain. Steele wasn’t innovating; he was simply calling on that body to repent of their departures from their prior, sound standards. They didn’t separate right away, but tried time and again at the level of the Synod to get that body to repent of her backsliding. When, after seven years it was clear that the church obstinately refused (the church courts refused even to adjudicate Steele’s and the other men’s complaints), he and a few others obeyed the apostle’s command to separate from those who persist stubbornly in their error and thereby cause divisions (II Thess. 3:6,14-15; Rom. 16:17). Anyway, to answer your question, at least in part. It’s a very good question, and I’m glad you asked it. First, as indicated, we’re descendants of those who first took these particular covenants. Nationally, we are the offspring of England (the Solemn League and Covenant was not only an ecclesiastical, but a national covenant). Ecclesiastically, we are the offspring of the Church of Scotland.

    F: How so?

    H: All Presbyterian bodies in America and Canada — indeed, I think most in the world — trace their lineage back to the Revolution church of 1689, which in turn is the heritage of the Resolutioners — those who broke covenant in 1651. An exception is your friend’s denomination, the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America, who although greatly apostatized, are the direct heirs of the original covenanters.

    Also, some of us even trace our familial lineage to England, Scotland, and Ireland.

    Second, we know of no covenants that rival, let alone excel, these covenants for their faithfulness to the Scriptures. They are, in themselves, one of the attainments of the second reformation which God requires us to live up to (Prov. 22:28; Phil. 3:16). Hence, the fourth term of communion designates them, “an exemplification” of the ordinance of covenanting.

    F: But why don’t you also include other covenants, say from the days of Knox, or Calvin at Geneva, in your terms of communion?

    H: Actually, we own all scriptural covenants of which we are the obliged posterity. We simply believe that successive covenants, if they are faithful to the word of God in their content, include in them the earlier covenants (assuming the newer covenants include within them the duties sworn in the previous covenants). Thus, in upholding the more recent, Scripturally faithful covenants we are upholding the other, earlier covenants as well. And, I should add, we look for a day when the National Covenant and the Solemn League and Covenant themselves will be likewise upheld in newer covenants (for example, Isaiah 44:5 and Jeremiah 50:5).

    F: Do you have any scriptural proof for this idea of upholding earlier covenants in newer ones, without needing to own the older ones explicitly?

    H: Yes. We see this pattern throughout the entire Bible. For instance, the covenant made with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is subsumed or included within the covenant made with Moses (Deut. 4:23,31; 5:3). That covenant, in turn, is included within the covenant Joshua made with the people (Josh. 24:22-25). Likewise, these earlier covenants are included under or within the covenants of Jehoida (2 Kings 11:17-18), Asa (2 Chron. 15:8-19), Josiah (2 Chron. 34:31-33), and within the New Covenant (Gal. 3:13-18).

    F: Okay. Now, why the 1712 Renovation at Auchensaugh?

    H: We believe the Scriptures teach that covenants should be renewed under various dispensations of God’s providence. In fact, the National Covenant was itself a renovation of the earlier ‘King’s Covenant’, with expansion or explanation of this earlier covenant, and with added legal proofs from the Acts of Scotland’s Parliament. There have been other ‘renovations’, for example, by the Seceders, but not necessarily faithful renovations.

    F: What was wrong with the Seceders’ renovations?

    H: See chapter 3 of the Act, Declaration, and Testimony. Basically, they deny the scriptural doctrine of the civil government as upheld in the National Covenant and Solemn League and Covenant. Though some Seceders have valiantly and skillfully championed reformational truths, they have not fully upheld the attainments of our covenanted forefathers. They are, sadly, covenant breakers, though they claim to be the heirs of the covenanters.

    F: Wait — so this is just like the creeds issue. People are claiming that they uphold the covenants of our forefathers, but merely claiming this doesn’t make it so. Just like those claiming to believe the Bible have to be tested by a standard — the creeds — so, too, do those claiming to uphold the covenants need to be tested by some standard to see if they really uphold them in their originally intended sense.

    H: Exactly. That’s why M’Millan and the others renewing the covenants at Auchensaugh added the marginal notes, so that it was unmistakably clear what the original covenants truly meant.

  99. F: And what they didn’t mean.

    H: Right. And this leads quite naturally into the fifth term, “An approbation of the faithful contendings of the martyrs of Jesus, especially in Scotland, against Paganism, Popery, Prelacy, Malignancy and Sectarianism; immoral civil governments; Erastian tolerations and persecutions which flow from them; and of the Judicial Testimony emitted by the Reformed Presbytery in North Britain, 1761 and adopted by this church, with supplements; as containing a noble example to be followed, in contending for all divine truth, and in testifying against all corruptions embodied in the constitutions of either churches or states.”

    F: Good, because my friend really became, shall I say, ‘lively’, on this one. This is where the charges of Popery, implicit faith, undermining the sufficiency and authority of the Bible, etc., were flying the fastest and heaviest. And, frankly, I don’t know how to answer these charges, and I wonder if they aren’t at least somewhat accurate. I certainly respect the faithful saints of days past, but how can you justify a mandatory subscription to uninspired history?!

    H: Maybe at this point it’d be helpful to review the phrase, ‘terms of communion’. What do you understand it to mean?

    F: Something required in order for you to come to the Lord’s Table.

    H: Right. I like Steele’s definition, from The Two Witnesses (page 388 of his Notes On the Apocalypse) — “the primary object of terms of communion in the Church is to exhibit the law and covenant of God, and then agreement of persons in their apprehension of these, together with their joint and declared resolution to walk accordingly.” Now, in a nutshell, we believe that divine truth is the only, and completely sufficient basis for our terms of communion.

    F: Okay — but where does the Bible ever require “An approbation of the faithful contendings of the martyrs of Jesus, especially in Scotland, etc.” or even, “that the National Covenant and the Solemn League are an exemplification of” covenanting, in order for someone to come to the Lord’s Table? It’s impossible in the nature of the case, since these occurred 1500 years after the canon was closed!

    H: I understand your concern; it took me awhile to get past this hurdle, too. Am I correct in saying that you don’t think uninspired history should be required to come to the Lord’s Table?

    F: Yes, that’s right. That’s why my friend said that ‘Steelites’ put the writings of uninspired men on a par with the Scriptures.

    H: Which clearly implies that the Scriptures and the Scriptures alone should be the term of communion. Do you agree with this? Do you think that adherence to only inspired — that is, infallible, incapable of error — writings should be what is required to come to the Lord’s Table?

    F: Yes. That’s all the apostles required.

    H: Well, then, we should cut out not only the uninspired history as a term of communion, but the creeds, and really, any statement not found directly in the Scriptures, since these are all uninspired and therefore fallible (capable of error) writings of uninspired men.

    F: Hmmm. . . I think I see where you’re going. This is sounding a lot like the creeds discussion we had before. But I’m still not completely clear.

    H: Let’s consider an example. Do you believe that honor to parents should be a term of communion?

    F: Sure; it’s a direct command.

    H: Fine. Where does the Bible say who one’s parents are?

    F: What?

    H: How do we come to know who, specifically, to honor?

    F: The Bible, of course. It’s a direct command.

    H: Yes, but it’s a general command. It doesn’t tell us specifically who our parents are, that we may honor them.

    F: You’re right!

    H: So how do you know who your parents are, in order to obey this direct command? Isn’t determining or recognizing one’s parents a matter of historical record?

    F: Yes, I guess so.

    H: So, is this a matter of inspired historical record, or uninspired?

    F: Uninspired. . . I can’t verify that my parents are really my parents apart from them and others telling me so — and all these people are uninspired. I was there at my birth, but I don’t have a memory of it!

    H: And yet, honoring one’s parents is a term of communion. So, uninspired historical testimony is required as a term of communion. It can’t be any other way.

    F: Interesting. But is it the same for the historical data and documents you require?

    H: Well, does the Bible command us to covenant, and when we, or our covenantal representatives do so, are we required to keep our covenants?

    F: Yes; it’s just like with the command to honor one’s parents. There is a general command: to covenant, and to keep and renew prior righteous covenants that originally included posterity. But the specific application of this command can only be made by looking to uninspired historical testimony.

    H: So, you’re okay with having the two covenants and the endorsement of the renovation of these at Auchensaugh as terms of communion? These being specific instances of general scriptural commands, binding us to our duty specifically?

    F: Yes. But is there a command requiring the approbation of the martyrs’ contendings, and especially a command about the Act, Declaration, and Testimony?

    H: Good question. Let’s look at some biblical warrant for such approbation:

    Phil. 1:27: “Stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.”

    1 Cor. 1:10: “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

    Heb. 12:1: “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses.”

    Heb. 10:33: “Partly, whilst ye were made a gazingstock both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst ye became companions of them that were so used (or treated).”

    Heb. 13:7-8,13: “Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation (or walk). Jesus Christ is the sane yesterday, and to day, and for ever. . . . Let us go forth therefore unto him without (or outside) the camp, bearing his reproach.”

    1 Cor. 11:1: “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.”

    Phil. 3:17: “Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an example.”

    Phil. 4:9: “Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do.”

    Song 1:8: “Go thy way forth by the footsteps of the flock.”

    Jer. 6:16: “Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.”

    And note the wording in term five, that these contendings are “a noble example to be followed.” Also, if we grant the descending obligation of the Solemn League and Covenant, that very covenant requires what this term requires. Head 6 says, “We shall also, according to our places and callings, in this common cause of religion, liberty, and peace of the kingdoms, assist and defend all those [whether those swearing the covenant, or their posterity] that enter into this League and Covenant, in the maintaining and pursuing thereof, etc.”

    F: Hold on — something just occurred to me. Are you saying that not only doctrine is a term of communion, but also practice?

    H: Exactly! You’ve caught on! As you know, we require adherence to uninspired creeds because we must have not simply a bare profession of the authority and truth of the Bible (which most heretics would make), but adherence to the meaning of the Scriptures. This is the setting forth of the truth abstractly, or principially. However, “faith without works is dead” — in a person, or in the moral person of the church — and so we also set forth the truth concretely, or practically. We can see this twofold necessity — principle and practice — in II Timothy 3:16-17, where the Scriptures are given to teach, and so forth, that “the man of God may be throughly furnished unto all good works.” So, the statement or profession of the truth cannot be separated from the application or practice of the truth. James 1:22: “Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” Otherwise, we’d be no different than the devils: “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”

    Since the bond of fellowship in the church is the truth, the bond of fellowship is the truth stated and the truth applied; the truth professed and the truth lived; the truth doctrinally and the truth practically. These two facets of the truth are wedded; let not man put asunder what God has joined together. To hold to one without the other — both common errors in our time — is not the Christian charity which promotes unity: it is the lie of the evil one, dressed in the seductive clothing of “Christian love and unity,” which destroys true love and unity.

    F: So let me get this straight. You believe that the fourth and fifth terms are, in the practical realm, what the second and third are in the doctrinal realm?

    H: Yes. The second and third say, “this is what the truth means;” the fourth and fifth say, “this is what the truth looks like when lived out.” The Bible is the alone supreme and infallible standard, as term one says. It alone is incapable of error (infallible) and therefore has ultimate, unquestionable authority. The other terms are subordinate standards, founded upon and agreeable to the Bible. These other standards have authority, but not an ultimate authority. Their authority is like that of a parent or lawful magistrate: not absolute, but derived from God. Nevertheless, just because authority is derived does not mean that it’s not real authority, any more than a parent’s authority isn’t real just because it’s not absolute, but is derived.

    Consider the following quote from the Reformed Presbytery’s Explanation and Defence of the Terms of Communion (pp. 188-189):

    Let it also be carefully observed here, that, with regard to the Deeds of which we speak [in the fifth term of communion], we wish to be understood in the same sense as before, concerning the Confession of Faith and the Covenants. It is only after diligently perusing, pondering, and comparing these testimonies with the Word of God, and after finding them to be founded upon, and agreeable unto it, that we mean to rank them among the subordinate standards of our church. But, as two, or more, cannot consistently walk together in church-fellowship, unless they be agreed in sentiment concerning the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government of the church, and concerning the proper way of glorifying God upon earth, we reckon it exceedingly requisite that this agreement should be properly ascertained. For that important purpose, amongst others, these testimonies seem to be very much calculated. And it is only to such of them as truly deserve the characteristic epithets of SCRIPTURAL AND FAITHFUL, that we require the assent of our church members.

    I wish people like your friend would not make such outrageous and uncharitable accusations, especially before considering the biblical warrant just mentioned, and the clear explanations given by those holding these positions. We would all do well to be more swift to hear and slow to speak (James 1:19).

    F: So why —

    H: I’m sorry, may I interject? I just remembered one more thing about uninspired history as a term of communion.

    F: Sure, go ahead.

    H: Thanks. We mentioned that honoring our parents is a term of communion. How about honoring and submitting to other lawful authorities, in church and state?

    F: Sure, of course. Again, these are explicit commands. . . . And again, the Bible doesn’t tell us explicitly who, specifically, these lawful authorities are. . .

    H: Right! Now, does God command submission to all authorities in church and state?

    F: Sure.

    H: All authorities? Anyone and everyone who simply wears the title, gives commands, and wields some sort of power?

    F: Oh, no, of course not. I wasn’t thinking there. We can only submit for conscience sake to authority which bears his seal of approval: that is, to lawful authority. God forbids submission out of conscience to unlawful authority, though you might submit for other reasons, as you would to a highway robber who will beat you up or kill you if you don’t do what he says.

    H: So God clearly distinguishes not only between lawful and unlawful commands, but between lawful and unlawful authorities?

    F: Sure; that’s why the Confession says “any lawful power, or the lawful exercise of it” in Chapter 20, Section 4. They clearly distinguished between the two. If not, the conjunction “or” makes no sense at all here.

    H: That’s very perceptive. Recognizing this, how do we distinguish between lawful and unlawful authority, say, in the church? After all, on the one hand God says we’re opposing him and courting his wrath if we deny lawful authority, and on the other he says that we’re putting ourselves in great danger and making a mockery of his holy ordinance of authority if we own and submit (for conscience sake) to unlawful authority.

    F: By the test of Scripture, I guess.

    H: What are the Scripture tests?

    F: Umm. . . they have to use their authority for edification and not for destruction; they have to be the pillar and support of the truth. . .

    H: The marks of the church, right?

    F: Oh yeah, right. The pure preaching of the word, the right administration of the sacraments, and biblical church discipline.

    H: Can these things be ascertained of a church apart from the light of uninspired history?

    F: What do you mean?

    H: We said that the church is a moral person, one person throughout all the ages. As such, she was a child during the Old Testament times, came of age at the coming of Christ (Galatians 3:23-25; 4:3), and continues to grow and mature — Eph. 4:11-16. In that corporate sanctification, she must, like individual believers, live up to the level of growth God has granted her thus far — Philippians 3:16. As you mentioned, lawful authority is only for edification, not destruction (2 Corinthians 10:8; 13:8,10). If the ‘leaders’ in the church are promoting — even unwittingly and from good intentions — corporate backsliding from previous attainments in her sanctification, are they using their alleged authority for edification, or for destruction? For the truth, or against it?

    F: Against it; for the destruction of Jerusalem, not her building up. . .

    H: So, in other words, authority can only be lawful if it is holding and seeking to build upon the highest level of corporate sanctification granted to her. The marks of the church must be applied — not in a vacuum — but in history. And how do we know what these attainments in sanctification are?

    F: By uninspired historical record or testimony.

    H: Exactly. If you think about it, it can’t be any other way. Can you or I know whether we’re obeying God’s commandment to live up to the level of sanctification he’s given us as individuals apart from self-evaluation?

    F: Well, no. We are commanded to examine ourselves.

    H: Is this examination historical?

    F: It would have to be, because in the nature of the case sanctification is measuring where we were at some point and comparing it with where we are today. In other words, we are charting our historical progress, our growth in grace.

    H: So as individuals we must rely on uninspired historical testimony, even if only our own, in order to obey the explicit command in Philippians 3:16.

    F: Yes, I agree. So, as far as terms of communion: if obeying our leaders in the Lord is a term of communion, and refusing to obey unlawful leaders is, too; and if this can only be done by consulting uninspired history; then uninspired history has to be a term of communion.

    H: You’ve got it.

    F: A couple of other questions — Do you believe these terms of communion will ever be improved upon? My friend also said ‘Steelites’ are Anabaptistic perfectionists, and ‘reformed Finneyites’.

    H: The terms themselves answer this question. Term 3 says the form of government and directory for worship adopted by the Church of Scotland in the second reformation are “the most perfect model as yet attained.” Also, listen to Mr. Steele himself (from his printed communications with James M. Willson, editor of the Covenanter magazine, published with his Notes On the Apocalypse; p. 412):

    But that their [the witnesses’] testimony may have due efficacy, the witnesses must be united in visible fellowship, and also in the matter of their testimony. They must all speak that they do know, and testify that they have seen — “all speak the same thing, that there be no divisions (schisms) among them; but that they be perfectly joined together in the same mind, and in the same judgment,” 1 Cor. 1:10. Not that they “must agree in every object of thought,” — no, that is impossible; but, as already said, in the matter of their testimony. After agreement in this, there will still be ample scope for diversity of opinion, and for legitimate exercise of charity in mutual forbearance.

    Note that last sentence in particular. Does that sound like perfectionism? How about his statement that it is impossible to agree in every object of thought?

    Notice term 4, likewise. It says that the National Covenant and Solemn League and Covenant are “an exemplification” of the ordinance of covenanting, not “the exemplification”. We don’t think we’ve “arrived”, but we do seek to be faithful to Christ’s commands, such as Proverbs 22:28 — “Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.” — and Revelation 2:25 — “But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.”

    What was your other question?

    F: Why do you have the 6th term — “practically adorning the doctrine of God our Savior by walking in all his commandments and ordinances blamelessly” — if terms 4 and 5 deal already with the practical part of the truth?

    H: Because terms 4 and 5 have to do with the practical part of the truth respecting the church as a moral person — ecclesiastical piety, if you will. Term 6 stresses the need for personal or individual piety.

    Before you go, I thought you’d be edified by one last quote from Steele’s, The Two Witnesses (pages 372 and 382 in Notes On the Apocalypse), which I think sums up well what we stand for and what all churches should stand for, since Christ calls his church to bear faithful witness:

    Their work consisting, as we have seen, in contending for all divine truth, in its practical bearing upon individual and social man; and in opposing whatsoever is contrary to sound doctrine and the power of godliness. . . .There is not a doctrine of grace which is not opposed, which is not supplanted by the false prophet. To state these doctrines, to place them before the eye in logical connections, to apply them to saints and sinners; to defend them and their just application when denied in theory and disregarded in practice: to exemplify their sanctifying power in the hand of the Spirit of Christ: this, this is the work of the witnesses.

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