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Coffee Talk 2.12.24
47:22
St. Paul's Sarver

Coffee Talk 2.12.24

Roman Catholicism Part III Beliefs Continued Purgatory All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. (CCC 1030) Formulating this doctrine in the Councils of Florence (1431-49) and Trent (1545-63), the Catholic Church believes this is a valid interpretation of passages like 1 Corinthians 3:15, 1 Peter 1:7, and Matthew 12:31. (CCC 1031) Along with this, the Church further develops its understanding of purgatory through the apocryphal Scripture of 2 Maccabees 12:46. "From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers in suffrage for them, above all the Eucharistic sacrifice, so that, thus purified, they may attain the beatific vision of God. The Church also commends almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead." (CCC 1032) Mary 1. The Immaculate Conception (not reception!). "Above all creatures did God so loved her that truly in her was the Father well pleased with singular delight. Therefore, far above all the angels and all the saints so wondrously did God endow her with the abundance of all heavenly gifts poured from the treasury of his divinity that this mother, ever absolutely free of all stain of sin, all fair and perfect, would possess that fullness of holy innocence and sanctity than which, under God, one cannot even imagine anything greater, and which, outside of God, no mind can succeed in comprehending fully." (Pope Pius IX Ineffabilis Deus, 1845) 2. The Assumption of Mary. "Finally the Immaculate Virgin, preserved free from all stain of original sin, when the course of her earthly life was finished, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things, so that she might be the more fully conformed to her Son, the Lord of lords and conqueror of sin and death." (Pius XII, Munificentissimus Deus 1950) 3. The Mother of the Church. According to Rome, she is our Mother in the following ways: The Virgin Mary is the Church's model of faith and charity. (CCC 967) She is a mother to us in the order of grace. (CCC 968) Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation .... Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix." 4. Devotion to the Blessed Virgin. "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship." From the most ancient times the Blessed Virgin has been honored with the title of 'Mother of God,' to whose protection the faithful fly in all their dangers and needs.... This very special devotion ... differs essentially from the adoration which is given to the incarnate Word and equally to the Father and the Holy Spirit, and greatly fosters this adoration." (CCC 971) 5. Prayer to Mary. “In prayer the Holy Spirit unites us to the person of the only Son, in his glorified humanity, through which and in which our filial prayer unites us in the Church with the Mother of Jesus” (CCC 2673). Mary is the perfect Orans (prayer), a figure of the Church. When we pray to her, we are adhering with her to the plan of the Father, who sends his Son to save all men. Lutheran point of contrast: “Although she is most worthy of the most ample honors, nevertheless she does not wish to be made equal to Christ, but rather wishes us to consider and follow her example [the example of her faith and her humility].” (Apology Article IX) Praying to the Saints The witnesses who have preceded us into the kingdom, especially those whom the Church recognizes as saints, share in the living tradition of prayer by the example of their lives, the transmission of their writings, and their prayer today. They contemplate God, praise him and constantly care for those whom they have left on earth. When they entered into the joy of their Master, they were "put in charge of many things." Their intercession is their most exalted service to God's plan. We can and should ask them to intercede for us and for the whole world. (CCC 2683) Lutheran point of contrast: “supposing that the saints pray for the Church ever so much, yet it does not follow that they are to be invoked; although our Confession affirms only this, that Scripture does not teach the invocation of the saints, or that we are to ask the saints for aid… Nothing can be produced by the adversaries against this reasoning, that, since invocation does not have a testimony from God’s Word, it cannot be affirmed that the saints understand our invocation, or, even if they understand it, that God approves it.” (Apology Article IX)
Coffee Talk 2.4.24
39:59
St. Paul's Sarver

Coffee Talk 2.4.24

The Roman Catholic Church Part II Beliefs Continued The Church Though Catholics and Lutherans both teach a similar mission and foundation for the Church, our bodies of faith part ways concerning what makes the Church the Church. For Catholicism, the Christian Church is the body of people who profess faith in Christ and are governed by bishops and the pope. "The sole Church of Christ [is that] which our Savior, after his Resurrection, entrusted to Peter's pastoral care, commissioning him and the other apostles to extend and rule it.... This Church, constituted and organized as a society in the present world, subsists in the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in communion with him." (Second Vatican Council 1962-65) Lutheran point of contrast: “The Church is the congregation of saints, in which the Gospel is rightly taught and the Sacraments are rightly administered. And to the true unity of the Church it is enough to agree concerning the doctrine of the Gospel and the administration of the Sacraments. Nor is it necessary that human traditions, that is, rites or ceremonies, instituted by men, should be everywhere alike.” (AC vii) Does anything surprise you about Catholic understanding of what constitutes the Church? What concerns would the Catholic Church have with the Lutheran Definition of the Church stated above? As you can see, hierarchy is of the utmost importance in Roman Catholicism. “When Christ instituted the Twelve, "he constituted [them] in the form of a college or permanent assembly, at the head of which he placed Peter, chosen from among them." Just as "by the Lord's institution, St. Peter and the rest of the apostles constitute a single apostolic college, so in like fashion the Roman Pontiff, Peter's successor, and the bishops, the successors of the apostles, are related with and united to one another.” (CCC 880) “The Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peter's successor, "is the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful." "For the Roman Pontiff, by reason of his office as Vicar of Christ, and as pastor of the entire Church has full, supreme, and universal power over the whole Church, a power which he can always exercise unhindered." (CCC 882) “The Roman Pontiff, head of the college of bishops, enjoys this infallibility in virtue of his office, when, as supreme pastor and teacher of all the faithful - who confirms his brethren in the faith he proclaims by a definitive act a doctrine pertaining to faith or morals.... the infallibility promised to the Church is also present in the body of bishops when, together with Peter's successor, they exercise the supreme Magisterium," above all in an Ecumenical Council. When the Church through its supreme Magisterium proposes a doctrine "for belief as being divinely revealed," and as the teaching of Christ, the definitions "must be adhered to with the obedience of faith." This infallibility extends as far as the deposit of divine Revelation itself.” (CCC 891) What attitude should Lutherans take concerning the Papacy? The Sacraments As we discovered last week, when the Roman Catholic Church declares that one is “justified by faith,” they mean that God’s grace and Christ work help them merit eternal life. Birthed from this erroneous understanding of salvation, Catholics believe the Sacraments are outward signs instituted by Christ to infuse the grace that enables us to merit eternal life. "The sacraments are efficacious signs of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, by which divine life is dispensed to us." (CCC 1131) Lutheran point of contrast: “Our churches teach that the Sacraments were ordained… to be signs and testimonies of God’s will toward us. They were instituted to awaken and confirm faith in those who use them. Therefore, we must use the Sacraments in such a way that faith, which believes the promises offered and set forth through the Sacraments, is increased.” From the two definitions above, how do the Catholics and Lutherans differ in their understanding of the sacraments? By the “Spirit guiding her into all truth,” the Catholic Church maintains that there are seven sacraments instituted by the Lord: 1. Baptism 2. Confirmation 3. The Eucharist How does the Lutheran teaching on the Eucharist differ from Roman Catholicism? Why is it wrong to view the Lord’s Supper as a “sacrifice” for both the living and the dead? (hint: see Heb. 10:12) 4. Penance 5. Anointing the Sick 6. Holy Orders 7. The Sacrament of Matrimony Lutheran point of contrast: In contrast to Rome, the Lutheran Confession only recognize two Sacraments: Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. The reason for this is that they are clearly instituted by Christ in Scripture. “If we call Sacraments ‘rites that have the command of God, and to which the promise of grace has been added,’ it is easy to decide what are the true Sacraments…” (Apology VII)
Coffee Talk 1.28.23
46:11
St. Paul's Sarver

Coffee Talk 1.28.23

Roman Catholicism Part I Beliefs Source of Doctrine: Holy Tradition and Scripture "[The Catholic Church] …receives and venerates with equal affection of piety, and reverence, all the books both of the Old and of the New Testament—as also the said traditions… preserved in the Catholic Church by a continuous succession." (Council of Trent Fourth Session) "Christ the Lord, in whom the entire revelation of the most high God is summed up, commanded the apostles to preach the gospel… In keeping the Lord’s command, the gospel was handed on in two ways: orally… [and] in writing… In order that the full and living Gospel might always be preserved in the Church the apostles left bishops as their successors. They gave them their own position of teaching authority." Indeed, "the apostolic preaching, which is expressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the end of time.” This living transmission, accomplished in the Holy Spirit, is called Tradition, since it is distinct from Sacred Scripture, though closely connected to it. Through Tradition, "the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes." (CCC Part 1, Article 2, I) "Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture, then, are bound closely together, and communicate one with the other. For both of them, flowing out from the same divine well-spring, come together in some fashion to form one thing, and move towards the same goal." (Ibid, II) "The task of giving an authentic interpretation of the Word of God, whether in its written form or in the form of Tradition, has been entrusted to the living teaching office of the Church alone. Its authority in this matter is exercised in the name of Jesus Christ." This means that the task of interpretation has been entrusted to the bishops in communion with the successor of Peter, the Bishop of Rome... Yet this Magisterium is not superior to the Word of God, but is its servant." (Ibid, III) Lutheran point of contrast see FC Summary 1 Sin and the Way of Salvation Concerning Original Sin: “It is a deprivation of original holiness and justice, but human nature has not been totally corrupted: it is wounded in the natural powers proper to it, subject to ignorance, suffering and the dominion of death, and inclined to sin - an inclination to evil that is called concupiscence.” (CCC Part One, Section Two I.) Original Sin Continued: “Whereas all men had lost their innocence I the prevarcation of Adam… free will… was by no means extinguished in them.” (Council of Trent, Session 6) Salvation Concerning Grace: “Grace is favor, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God…” To say it another way, grace is the initial favor God gives to assist us to merit eternal life. "No one can merit the initial grace which is at the origin of conversion. Moved by the Holy Spirit, we can merit for ourselves and for others all the graces needed to attain eternal life, as well as necessary temporal goods." (CCC Part Three, Article II) Concerning Justification: “justification is not only the forgiveness of sins, but also sanctification and the renewal of the inner person [regeneration]” (Council of Trent, Decree on Justification, 7 [1547]).” “Justification establishes cooperation between God's grace and man's freedom… Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high. Justification is not only the remission of sins, but also the sanctification and renewal of the interior man” (CCC Part Three, Article II). In other words, when the Roman Catholic Church declares that “man is justified by faith,” they mean that God’s grace and Christ’s work help them merit eternal life. Lutheran point of contrast see AC IV 1-2 Ultimately, Justification is the root issue of what divides the Roman Catholic Church from the Lutheran Church. All other issues erupt from this gulf. This said, here’s the Catholic statement on the matter: CANON IX.- If anyone says that the sinner is justified by faith alone, meaning that nothing else is required to cooperate in order to obtain the grace of justification, and that it is not in any way necessary that he be prepared and disposed by the action of his own will, let him be anathema. (Council of Trent) CANON XII.-If any one saith, that justifying faith is nothing else but confidence in the divine mercy which remits sins for Christ’s sake; or, that this confidence alone is that whereby we are justified; let him be anathema. (Council of Trent)
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