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Christ removes all barriers to catholicity of His church through faith

JeffLogan's picture

Thinking about Christ and how He breaks down all barriers and spoils all principalities and powers which prevent true universality, true catholicity, of His body, the church...

Has anyone ever considered that a living faith is not achieved by adding our works to our faith but rather, that faith is a gift from God which being quickened by the Holy Spirit produces obedience (good works)? (The keyword here is "quickened". It would serve you well to consult your Strong's Concordance.)

Think about this verse and tell me what it means:

    And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him. -Acts 5:32 (KJV)

But first, before you answer, tell me what this means to demonstrate your wisdom:

    "Love means never having to say you're sorry." (Love Story, The movie.)

Does it mean...

    1) Love does nothing to warrant an apology

    2) Love takes no account of injury

    3) Other (explain)

Now answer the verse in question:

    And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him. -Acts 5:32 (KJV)

Does it mean...

    1) God only gives His Holy Spirit to those who obey Him

    2) God gives His Holy Spirit to men so they might obey Him

    3) Other (explain)

This is a discovery exercise and not a theological debate. Opinions are welcomed but scriptural support would be even better. Be sure to interpret your scriptures so we can understand how you are using them. Commentaries may be insightful but a paraphrase in your own words would be appreciated and would demonstrate you understand your subject matter.

jwmcmac's picture

Jeff posted a reply to: A

Jeff posted a reply to:

A reply to: And . . . Yes!
Submitted by JeffLogan on Sun, 2010-02-14 15:47.

A reply to:

jwmcmac had said:

"And . . . Yes! . . . I did mean to give my affirmation to the Words of the Pope . . . but in the 'obedient' sense of that . . . and not because the Pope was making a dogmatic statement of Faith . . . as He probably was not doing so in this instance . . . but He did get it right . . . according to the Faith of which He is the Chief 'defender' of that Faith."

Jeff had responded:

"You're saying, "he did get it right" because he is the Pope not from any sense you have of what is truth, right? I mean, as a Catholic you cannot know what is truth unless the Church defines it for you. Am I correct? The Holy Spirit does not operator upon the Catholic laity as it does upon the hierarchy to lead them into truth, correct? So I cannot understand how you can have any sense of what is truth or error unless your church differentiates for you."

jwmcmac comments:

Nope! That is how you desire it to be and is how you view allegiance to the Church.

He got it right . . . the same way that you might get it right . . . under the inspiration of the HOLY SPIRIT . . . and by a Special Charism of the Same HOLY SPIRIT.

And I Believe him just because I believe he got it right . . . the Pope correctly expressed a Truth of the Faith . . . just as the Church has always taught and Believed it to be.

I do not have to . . . and I did not have to . . . believe that he got it right for any reason other than that.

I was under no obligation to believe that he 'expressed the Truth' correctly in this instance . . . although in good-will . . . and because he is the Vicar of CHRIST on earth . . . I am under some obligation of deference and of obedience . . . though I could just as well have thought that he expressed the Truth badly . . . but he did not not express the Truth badly . . . but he did so . . . very very well.

Yes! You and I can know the Truth separate from the Church . . . in many ways . . . one of those being by the Grace of GOD Given by the HOLY SPIRIT . . . and in natural ways . . . such as through our parents . . . or through science or reason or many other ways . . . but we . . . and our parents . . . and science . . .and reason and in many other ways . . . we can easily get it wrong too . . . and also because of our own mis-guided desires and because of the evil one . . .

For one . . . we must accept the Truth as GOD Gives it and not as we desire it to be.

Peter expressed a Truth of Faith . . . when questioned by CHRIST as to WHO do you think that I am? . . . also in Believing the LORD as to eating HIS Body, Real Meat and drinking HIS Blood, Real Drink.

JESUS 'confirmed' the Truth of Peter's words and that the FATHER had 'revealed' this Truth to Peter.

The Pope does the same for the Church as JESUS did for Peter . . . the Pope holding the place of JESUS just for this purpose . . . doing this as JESUS' Vicar on earth . . . since JESUS is presently in Heaven . . . but the Pope doing this only in matters of Faith and Morals . . . he confirming the Faith of the whole Church as Bishop of the whole Church when speaking to the whole Church on matters of Faith and Morals with the intention of doing so . . . with the intention of Teaching a Truth of Faith and Morals to the whole Body of CHRIST on earth.

If we have a desire to know the Truth . . . we can be sure of knowing the Truth . . . if we are in Unity with this One Person on earth . . .

. . . and if we are not in Unity with this One person on earth . . . then we just might not have the fullness of the Truth in matters of Faith and Morals.

Of course, many here and elsewhere do not believe this.

I do Believe this.

Jeff said:

"You have previously denied that as a Protestant I can have direct communion with God without going through the church. So I assume the same holds true for the Catholic laity--that they cannot be impressed by the Holy Spirit but must rely upon the hierarchy of the church. I believe that when the Lord said He would send another Comforter to lead us into all truth you understand that He only gave that promise to the Church leaders and not people in general. That is what I gather from your statements about Protestants who do not rely upon the Church for truth. Am I correct?"

jwmcmac comments:

As I said above . . . you are not exactly correct.

We can know the Truth . . . as we search for it . . . but when we encounter the Truth and reject it . . . rejecting the Truth . . . just because we do not like the source of the 'confirmation' of that Truth, the source being the Church founded upon Peter and upon men . . . then we are not only rejecting the Church in that instance but we are going against CHRIST in that instance.

Many Saints have known the Truth better than the Popes have known it . . . but no Saint can make an infallible Definition of any Truth of Faith . . . but only a Pope can make an infallible 'Definition' of a Truth of Faith . . . or only a Pope can 'affirm' and 'confirm' such a Definition should it have been stated by someone other than the Pope.

The 'Doctors of the Faith' which the Church has named . . . I think 33 of them by now . . . do not make infallible statements of Faith, per se . . . but rather they expound one aspect or the other of the Faith in such a way as there is nothing in their writings 'contrary' to the Faith . . . thus saying that their writings are 'Filled' with the Truths of the Faith . . . and this on many levels . . . but not on the level of a 'Definition' of the Faith.

Even you, Jeff, can know the Truth on your own with the help of the HOLY SPIRIT . . .

. . . but where you go wrong, Jeff . . . in my opinion . . . is that you insist on interpreting all Truth for your individual self and on your own authority . . . yet denying this very ability to the Church . . . which is the pillar and Foundation of the Truth . . . even as you 'source of all Truth', Sacred Scripture, relates this Truth.

You, Jeff, give to yourself more authority to interpret than even a Pope gives to himself . . . as a Pope 'cannot change' any of the Truth which has been handed to him from previous Popes and from the days of the Apostles . . . and rather can only 'defend' those Eternal Truths and 'confirm' us in those Eternal Truths which he has Received.

Whether you ever accept this . . . I Hope you can understand this . . . and I pray that you will do both . . . but that being between you and GOD.

Of course, we do not have to do any of these things . . . just because I or the Church or the Scripture or CHRIST says so.

We have a free-will.

We can believe whatever we want . . . with all the consequence . . . that goes with it.

The Fruit of Unity . . . in my opinion . . . follows the Church which CHRIST built upon men . . . but that's just me . . . unity the Saints . . . and unity with the Popes . . . and unity of Faith with everyone who has remained in Unity with CHRIST by remaining in Unity with the Church.

I Hope we all end in the direction of Believing as does the CHRIST and HIS Church . . . my desire . . . if not yours . . . this being both a visible and an invisible Unity.

GOD Bless you and us all.