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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 1:52 AM | Locked

Mark:
It is why men like John Wycliffe and William Tyndale dedicated their lives to putting the bible in the hands of the common man, in a language he/she could read.

Hmm, sound alot like Jerome into Latin, Sts. Basil and Cyrus who invented the Cyrillic alphabet for this purpose,  Admitted Wycliffe and Tyndale had an unfair advantage - the printing press. For English -from timeline files I shared for L3: (one of the things I love about Logos is the ability to present and save information like this).

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 4:18 AM | Locked

MJ. Smith:

Mark:
This is no small difference.  To elevate the Magisterium to the level of the Bible, will produce doctrines that contradict or add to the Bible

I agree it is a significant difference - see the second post. However, the Church preceded the Bible, determined its canon, preserved it ... As a matter of dogma, the magisterium cannot contradict the Bible or add what is not at least hinted at in the Bible. If a proposed book for inclusion in the canon contradicted the magisterium it was not included. To understand the place of Tradition/Magisterium you need to begin by looking at the relationship between the written and oral Torah. Then you can trace how this Jewish heritege played out in Christian theology.

I am sorry but I must politely disagree. And again ask where the humility is. Peter called Pauls letters scripture in his letters. There is a quote from luke, and it is called scripture.

God put the bible together. Inspired the writers to write it, And made sure every church had a copy.. otherwise they could not quote each other and call it scripture.

Scripture was writtten as the church was born.. Was the churches instruction manual, as the OT was the Jewish instruction manual. We see in the time of Christ what happened when people added to the torah. They rejected Christ, because they placed their man made laws above Gods ( and Christ purposely broke their manmade laws) we see the same today with all the extra biblical writings of many churches, including the church headed in Rome..

 

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 5:13 AM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:

Bryan Brodess:

If you believe your eternal life is based on what you do on earth, and anything other than faith in the work of Christ ( this can not be constituted as a work for two reasons.. Your depending on Christ to do all the work. and Jesus himself in john 6 said it was the work of God we believe ( have faith ) in him.. then you believe in a works based gospel..

it does not matter if you call it works, if you call it means or pipelines of Grace.. you are doing something ( ie baptism, communion, confession, etc etc etc) in hopes of being rewarded by God with eternal life. That is a works based Gospel.. now matter how you try to twist it..

UM, really?  Quite a bit of Luther's Protest was to try to make clear that the Word and Sacraments ARE means of Grace and are rightly celebrated when this is made clear.  As a Lutheran, I very much would echo Word Alone, Grace Alone and Faith Alone as the proper way to proclaim Christ Alone, but this faith comes through the means that God has given us.  As 1 Peter says, Baptism saves us.

I made am open statement.. And I stand by it.. how diud Luther come into it??  I was not speaking against Luther...

You may not have intended to speak against Luther, but while I applaud your much of your statement about Grace, when you start speaking against the Means of Grace you are attacking the way God comes to us, and the source of the saving word of God and of our salvation to Lutheran ears.  This is why Luther had such a problem with Zwingli and eventally had to say that he has a different Spirit...  As the Augsburg Confession states the official Lutheran possition:

"It is taught that we cannot obtain forgiveness of sin and righteousness before God through our merit, work, or satisfactions, but that we receive forgiveness of sin and righteousness before God out of grace for Christ's sake through faith when we believe that Christ has suffered for us and that for his sake our sin is forgiven and righteousness and eternal life are given to us.  For God will regard and reckon this faith as righteousness in his sight, as St. Paul says in Romans 3 and 4.  To obtain such faith God instituted the office of preaching, giving the gospel and the sacraments.  Through these, as through means, he gives the Holy Spirit who produces faith, where and when he wills, in those who hear the gospel.  It teaches that we have a gracious God, not through our merit but through Christ's merit, when we so believe.  Condemned are the Anabaptists and others who teach that we obtain the Holy Spirit without the external word of the gospel through our own preparation, thoughts, and works."  (Augsburg Confession, German text, Articles 4 & 5 - trans. Eric Gritsch)

Bryan Brodess:
Grace means unmerited.. it means NO WORK.. if works are added, it is not grace.. Paul makes this clear..he also calls anyone who tries to mix grace and works a fool ( those are his words not mine)

There are many types of faith.. Do I believe God will keep his word and give me eternal life as he promised because I had faith in his work??  This is salvic faith. or justifiable faith

do I trust God when he says if I do this ( insert whatever sin you can think of ) I will damage myself.. and possibly damage others, and he has something better for me? then I am growing in Christ and becoming sanctified. yet this faith has absolutely nothing to do with my eternal life.

to say I must do anything ( be baptised, go to church, go to confession etc etc) in order to earn eternal life. it is no longer a gift, but a reward.. and this it is not out of grace..because it was earned, not unmerited.

As a Lutheran, I certainly echo that if we don't "have to" do anything to earn eternal life.  However, things ARE done to us and we GET TO do things.

As the Anglican Phillip Cary put it, Luther is not quite Protestant in many ways.  His helpful simplification is that "Protestants" generally have the following logic:

Major Premise: Whoever believes in Christ is saved.

Minor Premise: I believe in Christ

Conclusion: I am saved.

However, for Luther the logic is a bit different:

Major Premise: Christ told me, "I Baptize you in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit"

Minor Premise: Christ does not lie.

Conclusion: I am baptized and so have new life in Christ and can trust this and return to this no matter how I feel on any day.

See his article: http://www.scribd.com/doc/2215011/Why-Luther-is-not-quite-Protestant-by-Phillip-Cary

 

Bryan Brodess:
again my argument is not against lutherans.. I do not my brother in law is a lutheran, he does not practice eucharist. and does not believe water baptism is essential to be saved, but is an answer of a good conscious to Christ.. after he was saved..

Lack of participation in the Eucharist is an old problem.  As Luther lamented in the Preface to the Small Catechism, 

"Finally,because the tyranny of the pope has been abolished, people no longer want to receive the sacrament, and they treat it with contempt. This, too, needs to be stressed, while keeping in mind that we should not compel anyone to believe or to receive the sacrament and should not fix any law or time or place for it. Instead, we should preach in such a way that the people make themselves come without our law and just plain compel us pastors to administer the sacrament to them. This can be done by telling them: You have to worry that whoever does not desire or receive the sacrament at the very least around four times a year despises the sacrament and is no Christian, just as anyone who does not listen to or believe the gospel is no Christian. For Christ did not say, "Omit this," or "Despise this," but instead [1 Cor. 11:25*], "Do this, as often as you drink it. . . ." He really wants it to be done and not completely omitted or despised. "Do this," he says.

Those who do not hold the sacrament in high esteem indicate that they have no sin, no flesh, no devil, no world, no death, no dangers, no hell. That is, they believe they have none of these things, although they are up to their neck in them and belong to the devil twice over. On the other hand, they indicate that they need no grace, no life, no paradise, no heaven, no Christ, no God, nor any other good thing. For if they believed that they had so much evil and needed so much good, they would not neglect the sacrament, in which help against such evil is provided and in which so much good is given. It would not be necessary to compel them with any law to receive the sacrament. Instead, they would come on their own, rushing and running to it; they would compel themselves to come and would insist that you give them the sacrament."

And also Lutherans have always celebrated infant Baptism as God adopting us into his family.  As the Augsburg Confession 9 says, "Concerning baptism it is taught that it is necessary, that grace is offered through it, and that one should also baptize children, who through such baptism are entrusted to God and become pleasing to him."  Admittedly, there has been more than a bit of discussion as to what we mean by "necessary".  Do I deny that Jesus brought the thief on the cross into the kingdom, by no means.   But It is necessary to US to have something to trust, not to God.  And when people claiming to be Christians say that the very special way we are united with Christ's Death and Resurection is not really important, I have very serious problems. 

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 5:52 AM | Locked

MJ. Smith:

When I enter into my "church" (which can be anywhere) to celebrate Mass, I enter into God's time. And in God's time, I participate in the heavenly liturgy described in Revelation. In that heavenly liturgy, I hear God speak His Word (in three passages), I respond to His Word with a psalm, I hear His Word broken open to feed me (the homily). I then participate in Jesus' sacrifice of Himself on the cross and am fed His Body and Blood. In this God time, I meet Jesus Christ as truly present in the assembly, in the Word, in the priest, in the Body and Blood. After being fed from both the table of the Word and the table of Sacrifice, I am sent out into the world to love and serve the Lord - back into clock time.

This gives the hearing of God giving His Word (in God time) precedence over reading ink on paper in clock time. It puts the actual encounter with God in worship above the encounter with God in reading.

This view is not simply Catholic - it applies to the Orthodox and the vast majority of the Oriental churches. There are at least some Anglo-Catholics and Lutherans who either share or are sympathetic to this view.

Very well said, Martha.  This Lutheran would rather say "I am drawn into God's time by the Holy Spirit in faith" rather than simply "I enter into God's time".  I would also want to add that while there is a very real participation in the heavenly worship, it is frustratingly partial.  Luther once commented that he was never truly ever able to Pray the Lord's Prayer as he should.  But this does not stop the Holy Spirit, and we are blessed with a vision of this heavenly worship which while always partial and leaving us wanting more, it is enough as our "combat ration" in this world.

MJ. Smith:

Our chief work (office) is the Divine Office i.e. prayer consisting primarily of hymns, psalms, scripture readings and intercessory prayers. This is an outgrowth of the Jewish prayers at the time of the early church. The monasteries hijacked the practice and made it too complicated and time-consuming for laity but in various abbreviated forms, laity keeps stealing it back (origin of the rosary, for example).

As a Benedictine Monk once told me, it is a lot easier to show that you pray a LOT rather than that you do it well.  This is always a temptation for Christians, and not just those in fellowship with Rome. 

While I am not totally sold on the Rosary, I was quite pleased at how Christocentic a devotion it truly is when it was explained to me.  Some of my resistance is reacting against a piety where the people sat praying the rosary while the clergy were mumbling the mass with Sanctus bells to allert the assembly when something important was happening.  Admittedly Rome has tried to encourage a view of worship like yours above for quite a while instead, but I do have some knee jerk reactions still.

 

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 6:18 AM | Locked

MJ. Smith:

Mark:
This is no small difference.  To elevate the Magisterium to the level of the Bible, will produce doctrines that contradict or add to the Bible

I agree it is a significant difference - see the second post. However, the Church preceded the Bible, determined its canon, preserved it ... As a matter of dogma, the magisterium cannot contradict the Bible or add what is not at least hinted at in the Bible. If a proposed book for inclusion in the canon contradicted the magisterium it was not included. To understand the place of Tradition/Magisterium you need to begin by looking at the relationship between the written and oral Torah. Then you can trace how this Jewish heritege played out in Christian theology.

Yes, the contents of what made it into the Bible was found by how it was used in Worship in the Church.  However, the Church is always a child of the Word of the promise that  Christ gives her.  When the Church is doing what it should be doing it is assaulted with attacks on this message.  To preserve this divine message the Church, when under assault, confesses the faith.  Often these confessions of faith are in the forms of Creeds.  Often times we have to use "unbiblical" words to preserve the Biblical content.  The most famous example of this, of course, is "homoousion" in the Nicene Creed.  That term is not used in the Bible.  However, Arius was able to corrupt the biblical terms and in order to defend the fact that the word we receive from Jesus is God's final answer, we as the chuch are free to use "unbiblical" terminology to preserve the message.

If this Lutheran can dare to  use a mariological example since Mary is understood as a "type" for the Church, the Blessed Virgin Mother famously answered, "let it be to me according to your word" and she sings and we join her song because "The Almighty has done great things to me".  Jesus comes through the church's proclaimation through the promise of God given through his messengers.  Since this is the case, is it not better to make the connection to our Lord explicict so we can better understand the history?

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 6:31 AM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:

God put the bible together. Inspired the writers to write it, And made sure every church had a copy.. otherwise they could not quote each other and call it scripture.

Scripture was writtten as the church was born.. Was the churches instruction manual, as the OT was the Jewish instruction manual. We see in the time of Christ what happened when people added to the torah. They rejected Christ, because they placed their man made laws above Gods ( and Christ purposely broke their manmade laws) we see the same today with all the extra biblical writings of many churches, including the church headed in Rome..

Yes, we have the Bible we have because of God's will.  But it is much more than an instruction manual.  As we Lutherans put it - we must distiguish between the Law and the Promises - wherever they are found in the Bible.  The Law came through Moses, but Grace and Truth come through Jesus Christ.  If the Bible is only a list of instructions, then why did God come down to us to share our life at Christmas?

The arguement that "they rejected Christ because they placed their man made laws above God's" is questionable.  First of all, the Jewish canon at the time was in flux.  The temple Priests only accepted the Torrah of Moses, for example, as God's Word, yet we know how Jesus got along with them.  Also, as Paul points out "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree".   But God saves us through his foolishness, and this foolishness gives much more than any law.

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 10:19 AM | Locked

We have gotten quite off track in this discussion.  As I recall, this discussion started because an ex-Roman Catholic was upset that any money he was paying for his resources would financially support Rome because in his (and many of your opinion) Rome does not teach the Gospel.

If Rome teaches the Gospel has almost been talked to death here.  But do any of the resources in the standard collections financially support Rome?  Of course, to get a final answer, we need to look at Logos' finances, but apart from that, I have looked at the collections they offer.  There is very little that is specifically Roman Catholic in the standard collections.  I see the following:

Douay Rheims Bible - Old enough that it is public domain.  I suppose it is possible that Logos is paying a bit for the electronic version, but looking at the info about the book in Logos makes it look like this is not the case.

A bunch of old writers that are important for many "branches" of Christianity (eg. Imitation of Christ, Augustine's Confessions)

I collection of Church Fathers with Protestant Footnotes.

A study or St. Cyril's theology issued for some reason without an Imprimatur.

Their Lectionary.

A few Biblical and Historical studies (eg the Ugaritic Library includes some Catholic scholarship)

In addition there is a collection by Anglicans who were recovering their roots...

There is, frankly little there that should be objectionable, even if you chose to object.

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

L8 Anglican, Lutheran and Orthodox Silver, Reformed Starter, Academic Essentials

L7 Lutheran Gold, Anglican Bronze

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 11:33 AM | Locked

One of the most important things I have learned from reading theology from outside my "tradition" is that why someone says something is at least as important as what they are saying.  It would be good to try to understand this before answering or reacting.  I admittedly certainly have a problem with this as well.

It is almost impossible to overstate how much Catholic theology is shaped by reacting against Gnosticism - the first great heresy the Church had to face.  Because of this, Catholic Theology wants to talk about how the mystery of redemption comes to and influences our bodies. As the baptismal creed states, we believe in "carnis resurrectionem" - that our very flesh will be brought into life everlasting.  As a result, Catholic Theology has a problem with Reformation formulations that seem to spiritualize away from our fleshly bodies.

Dogma is generally defined carefully and once defined it may be reinterpreted but isn't taken back.  The way that it is reinterpreted is usually by adding elements to the story, so to speak.  To some extent, you can see this even back in Chalcedon where Jesus is said to be "in duabus naturis inconfuse, immutabiliter, indivise, inseparabiliter".  How exactly we are to talk about the two natures without confusing, changing, dividing or separating them is not fully defined and is still a task for theology and Christian proclaimation to this day.  The dogma instead recognizes the fact that if we DO make it so that Jesus doesn't have a "real" human and divine nature or that certain things Jesus does only happen with one of the natures that this is a disaster for theology and is not the teaching of the Church.  Likewise for the Trinity, they took two words (ousia and hypostasis) which had been synonyms and made a useful distiction between them, letting us talk about both the oneness and threeness in God.

While what is the truth does not change, the Church's understanding of it does develop over time.  And the Church has felt free to take the time to listen for the Holy Spirit because she knows that time and especially the future belongs to our Lord.

There is also a heirarchy of truth in Catholic Theology.  Some things are seen as more central than others.  While none of it is viewed as being in error, to rightly understand the Church's teaching, you should not confuse frill with a load-bearing wall.

There is also quite a bit of diversity within the choir of Catholic Theology.  While many essentials have been dogmatically defined, there is also quite a bit of room for God to speak in many different voices.  As monolithic as the Vatican appears to many of us, much of what they say and do is to try to respect all these voices and keep the flock together.

This is why even when I see partial and problematic convergence expressed in the Joint Declaration of ten years ago, I rejoice.  Unfortunately it seems that Rome has been more clear as to how partial this is while we Lutherans generally either reject it as not a full statement of the Gospel (which it does not claim to be) or celebrate it as a complete agreement on the Gospel (which, again, it does not claim to be).  However, it IS a statement that much of our Lutheran language has a place in the theological choir, so to speak.  Exactly how this is has not been worked out.

"It is not by reading, writing, or speculation that one becomes a theologian. Nay, rather, it is living, dying, and being damned that makes one a theologian." Martin Luther

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 2:17 PM | Locked

Kenneth McGuire:
While I am not totally sold on the Rosary, I was quite pleased at how Christocentic a devotion it truly is when it was explained to me.  Some of my resistance is reacting against a piety where the people sat praying the rosary while the clergy were mumbling the mass with Sanctus bells to allert the assembly when something important was happening. 

I have much the same reaction ... my own practice is the Jesus Prayer with prayer ropes, a more Eastern practice.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 3:20 PM | Locked

Kenneth McGuire:

You may not have intended to speak against Luther, but while I applaud your much of your statement about Grace, when you start speaking against the Means of Grace you are attacking the way God comes to us,

Sorry. But grace means unearned favor. So do I take the word literally and make it mean what it means. that it is freely given not because of what I did. but because of who and what God is.. or twist and turn it like you are attempting to do and make it something that is earned? Sorry but I can not twist the words God inspired. Again Paul made it clear.. if it is of grace, is is not through works otherwise grace is no longer grace.

If I give you a gift, and in turn tell you you have to do something in order to recieve it it was no gift. it was a prize you earned.. I can not make it any simpler. God said we are saved by grace.. it is a gift.. it can not be earned by any means, or else it is not grace, but it is works.

 

Kenneth McGuire:

and the source of the saving word of God and of our salvation to Lutheran ears.  This is why Luther had such a problem with Zwingli and eventally had to say that he has a different Spirit...  As the Augsburg Confession states the official Lutheran possition:

"It is taught that we cannot obtain forgiveness of sin and righteousness before God through our merit, work, or satisfactions, but that we receive forgiveness of sin and righteousness before God out of grace for Christ's sake through faith when we believe that Christ has suffered for us and that for his sake our sin is forgiven and righteousness and eternal life are given to us.  For God will regard and reckon this faith as righteousness in his sight, as St. Paul says in Romans 3 and 4.  To obtain such faith God instituted the office of preaching, giving the gospel and the sacraments. 

rom 3: 20 -

20 For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.

Proof positive as to why the law could save no one.. all the law did was prove we needed a savior!

Rom 3: 21 - 25:

21But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction:fo all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Here we se it. Justified by faith.. it is a gift. it is not earned.. it is not done through a sacramental system it is done through believing in him.. John 6: 29 makes it clear.. it is the WORK OF GO)D ( not our work ) that we BELIEVE in CHRIST.

rom 5: 25:

25whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.

  What was it that appeased the fathers wrath and saved us??  Christ death.. not a buch of sacramental works. but Christs work on the cross.. and how do we get it?? through FAITH!

Romans 4:4-6

4Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:

Again paul makes it cxlear.. If you attempt to work your way to forgiveness through a set of rules, tradition or any type of "work" You have done nothing. Your still in your sin,, your debt is even greater.. But to those who, through faith, trust God.. Christ work is imputed to you, and your sins are forgiven.

The rest of chapter 4 covers how abraham was saved before the law.. so why are jews trying to still work for their salvation.. Thus I ask today.. why is the churhc still trying to work for their salvation through a set of sacramental rules and regulation.

 

Rom 3 and 4 spoke not one word of sacraments.. only salvation through faith.. not of works.

 

Kenneth McGuire:

Bryan Brodess:
Grace means unmerited.. it means NO WORK.. if works are added, it is not grace.. Paul makes this clear..he also calls anyone who tries to mix grace and works a fool ( those are his words not mine)

There are many types of faith.. Do I believe God will keep his word and give me eternal life as he promised because I had faith in his work??  This is salvic faith. or justifiable faith

do I trust God when he says if I do this ( insert whatever sin you can think of ) I will damage myself.. and possibly damage others, and he has something better for me? then I am growing in Christ and becoming sanctified. yet this faith has absolutely nothing to do with my eternal life.

to say I must do anything ( be baptised, go to church, go to confession etc etc) in order to earn eternal life. it is no longer a gift, but a reward.. and this it is not out of grace..because it was earned, not unmerited.

As a Lutheran, I certainly echo that if we don't "have to" do anything to earn eternal life.  However, things ARE done to us and we GET TO do things.

 

The only thing done to us that is important is to be baptised into Christs death burial and ressurection by the Holy Spirit of God where our sins are washed clean. and we are justified freely by having faith in the work of Christ on the cross. Once we are saved.. out of thanks to our new savior.. we do the thingts he asks. Like get baptised, take communion, assemble ourselves. And learn to live a life free of sin.. But this is because we are saved.. and have Gods power to help us do these things.. We do not do them to help us get saved.. otherwise we turn the grace of God to aworks.. and try to earn his free gift..

Kenneth McGuire:

As the Anglican Phillip Cary put it, Luther is not quite Protestant in many ways.  His helpful simplification is that "Protestants" generally have the following logic:

Major Premise: Whoever believes in Christ is saved.

Minor Premise: I believe in Christ

Conclusion: I am saved.

However, for Luther the logic is a bit different:

Major Premise: Christ told me, "I Baptize you in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit"

Minor Premise: Christ does not lie.

Conclusion: I am baptized and so have new life in Christ and can trust this and return to this no matter how I feel on any day.

See his article: http://www.scribd.com/doc/2215011/Why-Luther-is-not-quite-Protestant-by-Phillip-Cary

Or better yet lets put it this way.. The demons believe yet tremble.. Why? they do not have faith.. Jesus said humble yourself come to the throne of Grace.. place your complete trust in me, and I will save you.

Those who try to work for it have failed to place their trust in Christ.. they are still relying on themselves.. That is why "few there are that will enter the narrow Gate"

 

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 3:23 PM | Locked

Kenneth McGuire:

 

Bryan Brodess:
again my argument is not against lutherans.. I do not my brother in law is a lutheran, he does not practice eucharist. and does not believe water baptism is essential to be saved, but is an answer of a good conscious to Christ.. after he was saved..

Lack of participation in the Eucharist is an old problem.  As Luther lamented in the Preface to the Small Catechism, 

"Finally,because the tyranny of the pope has been abolished, people no longer want to receive the sacrament, and they treat it with contempt. This, too, needs to be stressed, while keeping in mind that we should not compel anyone to believe or to receive the sacrament and should not fix any law or time or place for it. Instead, we should preach in such a way that the people make themselves come without our law and just plain compel us pastors to administer the sacrament to them. This can be done by telling them: You have to worry that whoever does not desire or receive the sacrament at the very least around four times a year despises the sacrament and is no Christian, just as anyone who does not listen to or believe the gospel is no Christian. For Christ did not say, "Omit this," or "Despise this," but instead [1 Cor. 11:25*], "Do this, as often as you drink it. . . ." He really wants it to be done and not completely omitted or despised. "Do this," he says.

Those who do not hold the sacrament in high esteem indicate that they have no sin, no flesh, no devil, no world, no death, no dangers, no hell. That is, they believe they have none of these things, although they are up to their neck in them and belong to the devil twice over. On the other hand, they indicate that they need no grace, no life, no paradise, no heaven, no Christ, no God, nor any other good thing. For if they believed that they had so much evil and needed so much good, they would not neglect the sacrament, in which help against such evil is provided and in which so much good is given. It would not be necessary to compel them with any law to receive the sacrament. Instead, they would come on their own, rushing and running to it; they would compel themselves to come and would insist that you give them the sacrament."

And also Lutherans have always celebrated infant Baptism as God adopting us into his family.  As the Augsburg Confession 9 says, "Concerning baptism it is taught that it is necessary, that grace is offered through it, and that one should also baptize children, who through such baptism are entrusted to God and become pleasing to him."  Admittedly, there has been more than a bit of discussion as to what we mean by "necessary".  Do I deny that Jesus brought the thief on the cross into the kingdom, by no means.   But It is necessary to US to have something to trust, not to God.  And when people claiming to be Christians say that the very special way we are united with Christ's Death and Resurection is not really important, I have very serious problems. 

I am sorry I have translated John 6 over and over again. As peter himself said.. YOU HAVE THE WORDS OF ETERNAL LIFE..  Jesus said we must take the word.. for those who eat his word will never hunger and never thirst.. The eucharist does not fit this requirement. because you keep eating over and over,, yet you still hunger.. My God did not lie.. I want to eat the tru food one can eat and never die.. Not a wafer I have to eat over and over again and still not know if I will die or truely have "eternal " life..

 

 

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 3:31 PM | Locked

Kenneth McGuire:

Bryan Brodess:

God put the bible together. Inspired the writers to write it, And made sure every church had a copy.. otherwise they could not quote each other and call it scripture.

Scripture was writtten as the church was born.. Was the churches instruction manual, as the OT was the Jewish instruction manual. We see in the time of Christ what happened when people added to the torah. They rejected Christ, because they placed their man made laws above Gods ( and Christ purposely broke their manmade laws) we see the same today with all the extra biblical writings of many churches, including the church headed in Rome..

Yes, we have the Bible we have because of God's will.  But it is much more than an instruction manual.  As we Lutherans put it - we must distiguish between the Law and the Promises - wherever they are found in the Bible.  The Law came through Moses, but Grace and Truth come through Jesus Christ.  If the Bible is only a list of instructions, then why did God come down to us to share our life at Christmas?

Why did God come down??  Because if he did not come down.. we would have no hope of eternal life..

Kenneth McGuire:

The arguement that "they rejected Christ because they placed their man made laws above God's" is questionable.  First of all, the Jewish canon at the time was in flux.  The temple Priests only accepted the Torrah of Moses, for example, as God's Word, yet we know how Jesus got along with them.  Also, as Paul points out "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree".   But God saves us through his foolishness, and this foolishness gives much more than any law.

I do not agree. s the parable goes..Luke 18

10"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. he Pharisee standing by himself, prayed thus: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week I give tithes of all that I get.'ut the tax collector standing far off would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, bu beat his ***, saying, 'God be merciful to me, a sinner!' tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."

Christ made it clear. the pharisee did not see himself as a sinner, thus did not need a savior.. He also believed, because he did a few OT sacraments that he was saved already..

 


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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 3:46 PM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:
But grace means unearned favor.. it means NO WORK.

from Logos:

grace, the English translation of a Greek word meaning concretely ‘that which brings delight, joy, happiness, or good fortune.’ Grace in classical Greek applied to art, persons, speech, or athletics, as well as to the good fortune, kindness, and power bestowed by the gods upon divine men, moving them to miraculous deeds.
The LXX employs this word to translate the Hebrew root meaning ‘favor.’
Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper's Bible dictionary (1st ed.) (357). San Francisco: Harper & Row.

To me, the initial question to ask in order to understand each other, is who taught you that "grace means unearned favor? Bible Word studies are intended to ferret out such information, but they succeed only to the extent that we wrestle with the questions rather than accept our Logos generated report as telling us the answer. One of the substantial advantages of Logos is that, if we choose our resources wisely, we can get such questions "thrown in our face" when we would not search out such diversity in a ink and paper library.

I would also explore what you mean by work - if sometimes sounds as if even giving assent is "work"; I would explore what you mean by earn as you classify statements as "work to earn" that would never occur to me to include in those terms.

Anyone know of a good dictionary of comparative theological terms i.e. how a Orthodox, Catholic, Lutheran, Anglican, Reformed, Calvinist ... theologies define specific terms?

I have also noticed something interesting in a couple of threads - how heavily Paul is quoted, how little the Gospels are quoted. This aligned with statistics produced in answer to a question (pre-forum) regarding what texts the Logos sermons used the most often. As I recall, there were some Gospels but lots of Paul.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 3:53 PM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:

Yes, we have the Bible we have because of God's will.  But it is much more than an instruction manual.  As we Lutherans put it - we must distiguish between the Law and the Promises - wherever they are found in the Bible.  The Law came through Moses, but Grace and Truth come through Jesus Christ.  If the Bible is only a list of instructions, then why did God come down to us to share our life at Christmas?

Why did God come down??  Because if he did not come down.. we would have no hope of eternal life..

My point exactly.  The Gospel is NOT law.  It is MORE than Law.  So when speaking of the Bible and its authority we should speak of it as more than just a rule book.  Anything less suggests that all we need is Law and not a Savior.

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:
The arguement that "they rejected Christ because they placed their man made laws above God's" is questionable.  First of all, the Jewish canon at the time was in flux.  The temple Priests only accepted the Torrah of Moses, for example, as God's Word, yet we know how Jesus got along with them.  Also, as Paul points out "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree".   But God saves us through his foolishness, and this foolishness gives much more than any law.

I do not agree. s the parable goes..Luke 18

10"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. he Pharisee standing by himself, prayed thus: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week I give tithes of all that I get.'ut the tax collector standing far off would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, bu beat his ***, saying, 'God be merciful to me, a sinner!' tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."

Christ made it clear. the pharisee did not see himself as a sinner, thus did not need a savior.. He also believed, because he did a few OT sacraments that he was saved already..

My example was temple priests.  The temple priests were quite different from the Pharasees.

Do you really deny what Paul says about the Cross in 1 Cor and Galatians?  It breaks the legal system...  Jesus became Cursed for us.  This is folly to many, but to those of us being crushed under life's heavy load, it is the mystery of how we are redeamed into God's family.

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 4:02 PM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:
As peter himself said.. YOU HAVE THE WORDS OF ETERNAL LIFE..  Jesus said we must take the word.. for those who eat his word will never hunger and never thirst.. The eucharist does not fit this requirement. because you keep eating over and over,, yet you still hunger..

By your logic, may I only read the Bible once in my life? As Jesus himself said: "Then he took the bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” We are fed from the table of the Word far more frequently than from the altar of sacrifice. And I seem to remember something about hungering and thirsting after righteousness ... but if I have fed on His Word once ...

Your argument is a example of why I like to use formal argument mapping tools - both sides believe that their responses rebut the other side's assertions ... but neither side recognizes the responses as rebuttals - classic talking pass each other.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 4:13 PM | Locked

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:

You may not have intended to speak against Luther, but while I applaud your much of your statement about Grace, when you start speaking against the Means of Grace you are attacking the way God comes to us,

Sorry. But grace means unearned favor. So do I take the word literally and make it mean what it means. that it is freely given not because of what I did. but because of who and what God is.. or twist and turn it like you are attempting to do and make it something that is earned? Sorry but I can not twist the words God inspired. Again Paul made it clear.. if it is of grace, is is not through works otherwise grace is no longer grace.

If I give you a gift, and in turn tell you you have to do something in order to recieve it it was no gift. it was a prize you earned.. I can not make it any simpler. God said we are saved by grace.. it is a gift.. it can not be earned by any means, or else it is not grace, but it is works.

Yes, Grace is unearned favor.  But how does Grace come to us sinners?  Does it just pop in there?  Or does it come from the very physical ways God has given us - namely people tell us about Jesus by preaching it, baptizing sinners and passing on Jesus' Body and Blood?

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

L8 Anglican, Lutheran and Orthodox Silver, Reformed Starter, Academic Essentials

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 4:56 PM | Locked

MJ. Smith:

Bryan Brodess:
But grace means unearned favor.. it means NO WORK.

from Logos:

grace, the English translation of a Greek word meaning concretely ‘that which brings delight, joy, happiness, or good fortune.’ Grace in classical Greek applied to art, persons, speech, or athletics, as well as to the good fortune, kindness, and power bestowed by the gods upon divine men, moving them to miraculous deeds.
The LXX employs this word to translate the Hebrew root meaning ‘favor.’
Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper's Bible dictionary (1st ed.) (357). San Francisco: Harper & Row.

To me, the initial question to ask in order to understand each other, is who taught you that "grace means unearned favor?

Maybe it is to you, But I look at reality.. When one says grace is equal to a gift.. it means unearned. for a gift can not be earned, it is freely given, if it is earned it is not a gift but a reward.

second paul said grace can not be earned by works, or else it is not grace..  The problem with looking at defenitions is defenitions are given by people and are thus biased as to ones view.

Lastly, I have always knows that favor can be translated as something earned. But grace means only freely given, or thanks for recieving something you did not earn..

Scripture can not contradict. If paul says grace can not be earned by works.. then it can not be translated someplace else in scripture to mean a reward earned by works.. if the bibel contradicts it is a lie is it not??

That is one nice thing about logos.. it does give us valuable resources.. But one thing we must all take into account.. No matter what resource we use. Scripture must NEVER contradict. If God contradicts himself he is not God, if scripture contradicts itself it is not from God..

A work is anything done.. Faith is not a work. it is depending on someone else to do the work for you.. As I said repeatedly Jesus said in john 6 that it is the work of God we believe in him.. and what does everyone who believe ( has faith in his words ) receive?? Eternal life. Never hunger, never thirst, will be raised ( not delivered) on the last day. to me it gets no clearer than this..

 

 

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 5:02 PM | Locked

Kenneth McGuire:

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:

Yes, we have the Bible we have because of God's will.  But it is much more than an instruction manual.  As we Lutherans put it - we must distiguish between the Law and the Promises - wherever they are found in the Bible.  The Law came through Moses, but Grace and Truth come through Jesus Christ.  If the Bible is only a list of instructions, then why did God come down to us to share our life at Christmas?

Why did God come down??  Because if he did not come down.. we would have no hope of eternal life..

My point exactly.  The Gospel is NOT law.  It is MORE than Law.  So when speaking of the Bible and its authority we should speak of it as more than just a rule book.  Anything less suggests that all we need is Law and not a Savior.

Who called the bible a rule book? it was not I. I said instruction manual.. How do I know how to get saved? the bible. How do I know I am a sinner? the bible. How do I know how to react in certain situation? the bible.. Instructions is not a set of rules. it is guidance.. The bible lets me know all I need about salvation. how to grow in christ. and how to act in every situation. It tells me who my father is, Who my savior is. What I am saved from. What I can look forward to.. My hope.. you name it.

The torah was a book of rules yes. But what did the NT writters say those rules did?? They led us to Christ..

Kenneth McGuire:

Bryan Brodess:

Kenneth McGuire:

The arguement that "they rejected Christ because they placed their man made laws above God's" is questionable.  First of all, the Jewish canon at the time was in flux.  The temple Priests only accepted the Torrah of Moses, for example, as God's Word, yet we know how Jesus got along with them.  Also, as Paul points out "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree".   But God saves us through his foolishness, and this foolishness gives much more than any law.

I do not agree. s the parable goes..Luke 18

10"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. he Pharisee standing by himself, prayed thus: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week I give tithes of all that I get.'ut the tax collector standing far off would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, bu beat his ***, saying, 'God be merciful to me, a sinner!' tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."

Christ made it clear. the pharisee did not see himself as a sinner, thus did not need a savior.. He also believed, because he did a few OT sacraments that he was saved already..

My example was temple priests.  The temple priests were quite different from the Pharasees.

Do you really deny what Paul says about the Cross in 1 Cor and Galatians?  It breaks the legal system...  Jesus became Cursed for us.  This is folly to many, but to those of us being crushed under life's heavy load, it is the mystery of how we are redeamed into God's family.

It is not I who deny this. It is whoever places a bunch of rules. Like being baptised in water, taking the eucharist, Confessing to a priest, Going to church, Obeying the law, etc etc etc in order to make the cross count towards your eternal life that is doing this.

 

Yes your right. The cross did break the law.. So why do so many want to put themselves back under a law by mixing works of any kind with grace in order to earn what God calls a gift.. eternal life? because I can not comprehend why anyone would do this..

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 5:17 PM | Locked

 

 

MJ. Smith:

Bryan Brodess:
As peter himself said.. YOU HAVE THE WORDS OF ETERNAL LIFE..  Jesus said we must take the word.. for those who eat his word will never hunger and never thirst.. The eucharist does not fit this requirement. because you keep eating over and over,, yet you still hunger..

By your logic, may I only read the Bible once in my life? As Jesus himself said: "Then he took the bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” We are fed from the table of the Word far more frequently than from the altar of sacrifice. And I seem to remember something about hungering and thirsting after righteousness ... but if I have fed on His Word once ...

Your argument is a example of why I like to use formal argument mapping tools - both sides believe that their responses rebut the other side's assertions ... but neither side recognizes the responses as rebuttals - classic talking pass each other.

Jesus said in John 6

 Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.”

here we have the whole context of the passage.. This food God will give us..

the people then ask what work they must do in order to recieve this food.. what was Christs response??

vs 28 - 29 : Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

which is what I have been saying.. where are the sacraments??

vs 35 - 40 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.

Where are the sacraments here??

vs 35 - 40 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.

Here is the bread.. whoever comes.. whoever believes or has faith.. where are the sacraments??

vs 44 - 51 Jesus therefore answered and said to them, “Do not murmur among yourselves. 44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. 46 Not that anyone has seen the Father, except He who is from God; He has seen the Father. 47 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in MeGift has everlasting life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.”

again where are the sacraments... or the eucharist??  Christ is showing how we can eat once and never have to eat or drink again.. but liver forever ( spiritualy speaking.

vs 53 - 58 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed,and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the bread which came down from heaven—not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever.”

Is it not clear.. whoever has not eaten is dead.. Whoever eats is not only alive,, but will live forever.. why do you keep eating the food which God said you can eat and never die..?? it makes NO SENSE~!!

vs 61 -63 When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, “Does this offend you? What then if you should see the Son of Man ascend where He was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.

Here is is.. can not get any simpler. Who inspired the word of God?? according to scripture the Holy Spirit.. Jesus claimed he never spoke from his own self but spoke as the spirit told him to speak.. So when we listen to what God said through the Holy spirit. not only the words of Christ but the whole gospel.. we taste the gospel.. When we eat it fully and digest it and have faith in it.. we are given eternal life.. It is not the eucharist.. it is the gospel which gives life..

vs 67 - 71 - Then Jesus said to the twelve, “Do you also want to go away?” But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Peter made it clear he understood what gives eternal life to whover eats.. it is the words Christ spoke.. John 1: 1 said in the beging was the word, the word was God and the word was with God.. the word is Christ.. who is salvation..

Just reading is not enough.. You must understand. and trust fully.. that is why salvation is because of faith..

How anyone gets the eucharist out of the above passage I will never comprehend..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 28 2009 5:20 PM | Locked

MJ. Smith:

Your argument is a example of why I like to use formal argument mapping tools - both sides believe that their responses rebut the other side's assertions ... but neither side recognizes the responses as rebuttals - classic talking pass each other.

I know exactly what you are saying. I have heard it many times. Always the same answer..

I said look at john 6. and somehow you went to 1 cor.. 1 cor and john 6 have nothing in common.. The flesh in john 6 gives eternal life to everyone who eats.. the flesh in 1 cor is supposed to be eaten on a regular basis in remembrance of the true flesh which was given to us.. 

 

 

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