Uncategorized

“The Church of England leaps with enthusiasm from one heresy to another”

Goodness! Someone asked from whence I glean the little snippets of news which form the ‘meat’ of my weekly column. Of course, they almost all feature in the pages of The Jupiter, with occasional forays into the Silverbridge Exchange and Mart and the Barset Chronicle. We are not so ill informed here in the shires where the body of Wellingtonian conservatism still has a pulse, albeit increasingly feint. Gossip, too, can sometimes shed light on events – for example, this week I was told (by someone who knew someone with a third-cousin on Fleet Street) that a certain Mr. Murdoch is considering buying The Jupiter to add to his newspaper empire. There is a petition out to stop him on the grounds that his newspapers are vile scandal sheets. I would have thought, in that case, The Jupiter would fit inside his tucker-bag rather well.

I see The Guardian (the Liberal-Left’s answer to the Völkischer Beobachter) is suggesting people might limit the number of children they bring into the world ‘to save the whale’, or something like that. Accompanying the said scurrilous piece is a photograph of three white babies… not black, brown or ‘diverse’, but white. The message is quite clear and quite nasty, but one feels they are preaching to the wrong demographic. The article itself was a load of twaddle anyway.

I have to confess to being converted to Moggism, given that Mrs. Dismay is proving to be as effective as a nosegay of lavender in warding off the Black Death. Granted, the government have published a bill to repeal the act which took us into Europe, but the Remainers are determined to scupper it. One suspects Mrs. Dismay knows this – the bill’s defeat will enable her to say it wasn’t her fault. The Archdeacon is convinced she was shoe-horned into Downing Street by Deep State puppeteers in order to lose an election and kick Brexit into the long grass. I must say I agree with him, and, given her unspectacular and downright depressing sojourn at the Home Office, I am surprised anybody thought otherwise. The Duke of Omnium (one of the elected hereditary peers post-Blairite Massacre of the House of Lords) told the Archdeacon (in strictest confidence) that the knives were out, a coup is in the offing and we’ll soon see the Lady vanishing. Let us hope the party turns to Mr. Rees-Mogg, a true Conservative and an excellent debater, and if anyone objects that he lacks the common touch, let them remember he employs ordinary people on his estate… as do we all.

He also has six children – The Guardian would be apoplectic.

I cannot bring myself to comment on the decision of the General Synod to sanctify transgenderisation, let alone to dispense with clerical vestments, so I will simply record what the Archdeacon has to say about it.

“Madam, I am appalled,” he began. “It seems the Church of England leaps with enthusiasm from one heresy to another, throwing away tradition like some worn-out rag and replacing it with the stained, sticky, rainbow-blanket of Sodom and Gomorrah. What else are they going to embrace, apart from every degenerate on the planet? Has the word ‘NO’ been expunged from Christian teaching? Shall we soon see a Feast of St. Mohammed on the Church Calendar, celebrated with the Holy Hand Grenade of Riqqah sponsored by Wikinson Sword? Who do these Mimsy-crop-haired kumbayistas with their badge-encrusted dungarees and their accompanying Delta-male cross-dressing counterparts think they are?”

“Synod,” I replied.

At which point he stormed off, coat-tails flapping and cheeks redder than Jeremy Corbyn’s long johns.

Turning to The Jupiter’s colour supplement, I see the King and Queen of Spain are here on a state visit. Hopefully Prince Philip will not mention the G-word or things could get rocky. One suspects it will be less controversial than the proposed visit by President Trumpelstiltskin, when the orcish roving brigands of the Left will bring disgrace down upon the country. Queen Letizia has much in common with the Duchess of Cambridge: both came from humble origins and therefore personify the Cinderella dreams of every aspiring Kimberley, Tracy and Chardonnay currently signed up to weightwatchers. Not that there are many eligible princes left, other than the Labour princelings being groomed to take over their parents’ seats. Personally, I think it is a good thing to replenish royal blood with an infusion of outsider from time to time, but too much of it makes the royals just like the rest of us. Where’s the magic in that?

President Trumpelstiltskin, meanwhile, is guest of honour at the Emperor Emmanuel’s Bastille Day celebration. Will he eat cake? The Donald is well known for sticking his neck out, but historical precedents suggest avoiding doing so on this occasion. Could prove fatal.

The shadows are growing long across the Palace lawns, which means I must dash. My Lord the Bishop is hosting a gathering of traditionalist Anglican clergy this evening, which means we are dining alone. To misquote Lord Tennyson, there are canons to the left of them but not many to the right. Mr. Slope will not be joining us: he returned from some colourful London street festival the other day in a blaze of colour, suggesting (with a giggle) that I might like to change my name to Mrs. Pride. I can’t think what got into him and, on reflection, would rather not know.

  • Albert

    I see The Guardian (the Liberal-Left’s answer to the Völkischer Beobachter)

    Superb!

    He also has six children – The Guardian would be apoplectic.

    Well he’s a good Catholic, so they must hate him even more.

    • Dreadnaught

      As the Dear Old Trout says, its the wrong demographic to be encouraging to limit family numbers and confirms the Guardian to be an anti-white/British, racist, majorityphobic, institutionally myopic, student Rag-Mag.

      • Albert

        There is a kind of irony. Liberalism will not triumph by liberals limiting the size of their families in this misanthropic way. Islam might though…

        • Dreadnaught

          ‘Liberalism’ is so evidently variable and it is very a loaded label to attach to anyone; it is never easy to describe with any accuracy. One may have liberal view on one subject but not another; humanity is not cast in black and white.
          But on the spread and ultimate world presence of Islam, of that I have Not a single doubt – it will happen, because there is no coordinated opposition to it in the West nor any conviction to recognise its stated destination.

          • Albert

            Agreed in liberalism, but I think there are certain features of liberalism that are generally shared: intolerance, for example! On the spread of Islam, no force is really able to counter it except Catholicism.

          • Dreadnaught

            Or tolerance of intolerance.

          • Albert

            Not sure I follow. liberals tend to be intolerant of intolerance. But they define the intolerance in both cases, according to their own doctrine, and therefore end up as doctrinaire as anyone else. It’s the hypocrisy that annoys me most.

          • Dreadnaught

            I mean to tolerate for reasons of pc, practises which are in themselves expressions of intolerance of others who disagree, especially from the left. Such things as the overpaid Vice Chancellors allowing University students unions to no platform speakers who hold opposing views or to shout down and disrupt Q&A sessions or force the abandonment of invited speakers to actually speak. They would no doubt refer to themselves as tolerant liberals protecting the sensitivities of lesser mortals by shielding them from the downside of having freedom of speech.

          • Dreadnaught

            Oh come on, the Catholics got rid of the only Pope in recent times who dared speak out against Islam. Made him an offer he couldn’t refuse.

          • Albert

            If you’re talking about Benedict XVI we didn’t get rid of him. On the contrary, he is greatly missed!

          • Cressida de Nova

            I miss him. I wish he had not resigned. We need him.

          • Anton

            Judaism in Israel and Hinduism in India are doing OK against it. Protestant England smashed it in WW1. Secularism is unable to stand against it.

          • Albert

            Judaism in Israel and Hinduism in India are doing OK against it.

            I think these are special cases. Judaism in Israel holds itself strong because of the holocaust, Hinduism is in a completely different culture and one that, as yet has not faced the full power of secularism. I was speaking about the West – for that is was Dreadnaught had spoken of.

            What is the evidence that Protestant England smashed it in WW1? Secularism comes from Protestantism.

          • Anton

            Secularism came out of the Enlightenment, which grew primarily in France in the hundred years after it threw all its protestants out.

          • Albert

            Did it? Have you not read Hume or Paine? Just because the idea took root there does not mean it grew from there. You might as well argue that Marx was Russian.

          • Anton

            What do you understand by the word “primarily”?

          • Albert

            I don’t think it helps you. It does not seem to me to be correct to it was primarily growing in France. This is Europe (and American) wide concept. Moreover, you forget the fact that the absolutist regimes were reactions against Protestantism. Thus, although France was Catholic the secularising ideas released by the Protestant Reformation were still effective there. In contrast, the Catholic countries of the South did not see in roads from secularism.

          • Anton

            It does not seem to me to be correct to it was primarily growing in France. This is Europe (and American) wide concept.

            So already you have given up on saying that secularism, which is a facet of of the Enlightenment, came from protestantism. Now you say it was Europe (and America) -wide. That is closer to the truth, but the fact is that French thinkers led the way in the 100 years after Louis XIV revoked the Edict of Nantes and the protestants of France fled rather than face persecution. As for absolutism being a reaction against protestantism, nonsense! The Stuart kings and Prussia were protestant and absolutist, and Louis XIV was simply absolutist by nature – like Henry VIII, the man was a megalomaniac. As for the French thinkers who led the way, Voltaire must rank prominently; then Diderot and the encyclopaedists, and Condorcet – for a start.

          • Albert

            So already you have given up on saying that secularism, which is a facet of of the Enlightenment, came from protestantism.

            The logic here escapes me. I was challenging the premise on which your argument rested. How can that possibly result in a different conclusion to my argument?

            Now you say it was Europe (and America) -wide. That is closer to the truth

            Ideas do not follow national boundaries. I’m talking about the direction of the history of ideas. France may well have produced leading thinkers, but the culture remained largely Catholic – even after the Revolution.

            French thinkers led the way in the 100 years after Louis XIV revoked the Edict of Nantes and the protestants of France fled rather than face persecution. As for absolutism being a reaction against protestantism, nonsense! The Stuart kings and Prussia were protestant and absolutist, and Louis XIV was simply absolutist by nature – like Henry VIII, the man was a megalomaniac.

            Obviously, I was talking about absolutism in Catholic countries. The secularism generated there is partly a reaction against that. Consider the line via Descartes: you have a clear and largely settled faith in Medieval Europe. Then that is smashed by the Protestant Reformation. Within a century or so, you have utter scepticism, combated philosophically unsuccessfully by Descartes and politically by the absolutist monarchs. But Protestantism had unleashed private judgement, and a secularising of the world because of its opposition to sacraments and sacramental world-view. At the same time, we have lots of religious violence, and so people turn to reason alone as the means to try to agree on things since an appeal to faith would no longer do.

            Hence we find it is predominantly the Northern Protestant countries that end up prey to secularism – not just in loss of Christian culture, but even in the secularising of the interpretation of scripture by Protestant scholars: enter the Germans.

          • Anton

            Modernism did for Roman Catholicism as a political power, whereas institutionally protestant countries largely remained so. It is postmodernism that did for institutional protestantism. I am no fan of institutional Christianity of any sort; Roman Catholicism is intrinsically institutional, of course.

            The logic here escapes me. I was challenging the premise on which your argument rested. How can that possibly result in a different conclusion to my argument?

            That’s your problem. I am simply pointing out that you originally claimed “Secularism comes from Protestantism” and then you quickly beat a partial retreat.

            You seem to be under the impression that you tie your intellectual opponents up in knots when what you really do is tie yourself in them.

          • Albert

            Modernism did for Roman Catholicism as a political power, whereas institutionally protestant countries largely remained so. It is postmodernism that did for institutional protestantism.

            The reason institutional protestantism survived the first wave was that it was institutionally ineffective. Why does the British state tolerate the CofE being established? It is because it is so inoffensive to secularism. Catholicism on the other hand was different.

            That’s your problem. I am simply pointing out that you originally claimed “Secularism comes from Protestantism” and then you quickly beat a partial retreat.

            It’s not my problem. Secularism does come from Protestantism, and neither the logic of your argument nor my response showed otherwise. Your argument included a category mistake which meant, not only did I not accept the argument, I wouldn’t even accept the premise.
            For reasons that continue to escape me, you seem to think that attacking your premise somehow meant I was conceding my own argument.

            Protestantism is an inherently secularising ideology. I have given reasons for that, and, as usual, you haven’t addressed them.

          • Anton

            Protestantism recognises that Christianity involves freedom – and that must mean freedom not to believe. Unhappily that freedom can be abused. The alternative, which is your way, is the Inquisition. Let us let Christ choose between us. Did he coerce people to become Christian, or not?

          • Albert

            Protestantism recognises that Christianity involves freedom – and that must mean freedom not to believe.

            Is that really a historically true claim? Have Protestants never persecuted others?

            The alternative, which is your way, is the Inquisition. Let us let Christ choose between us.

            Well you do appear to be bearing false witness, both in terms of your claims about Protestantism, and particularly in terms of your claims about me. The fact that the Church has sometimes had an inquisition does not mean (and unless you are unbelievably prejudiced or ignorance) that I hold to the rightness of such an institution. And this is to set aside the fact that you were generally better off under the inquisition than under Protestant courts.

          • Anton

            How many times do I have to say to you that I am against all institutional and politicised Christianity before you take note?

            The point is that some protestantism is institutional and some isn’t. All Catholicism is.

          • Albert

            How many times do I have to say to you that I am against all institutional and politicised Christianity before you take note?

            I understand that, but I would make two comments:

            1. You spoke of Protestants in general: Protestantism recognises that Christianity involves freedom – and that must mean freedom not to believe. It may be your belief that Christianity involves freedom, but it is a factually false statement to say that Protestantism per se does. Some do, some have not.

            2. In my opinion, a Christianity which rejects all institution is a Christianity which has rejected the Church, which is to say it is no Christianity at all. As for the Church rejecting a political life, you seem to make a curious distinction between the Church and Christians acting politically. If you mean by this that when Christians act politically, on account of their faith, the Church is not acting I can only say that my view that you not believe in the Church (in any sense) is confirmed.

          • Anton

            Christians who find themselves in politics are to be God’s representatives there, with all that that implies; and they may wish to organise meetings amongst themselves for prayer and coordination. But *the church* as a collective should not be in politics, and I have explained why: politics is ultimately about setting the laws, and Christianity is about letting yourself be changed by God in a way you cannot do for yourself. That has to be a choice, whereas the law is about coercion. And Jesus never coerced anybody; he simply warned of the consequences of people’s choices. Therefore, Christians in politics should seek to enact moral laws but should not seek to enforce any liturgy or church attendance or make it a requirement for public position, etc.

          • Albert

            I think your antinomianism is the problem here. There are certain laws and rights inbuilt into human nature, and it is correct that the Church should see to it that these things are defended. That’s quite different from imposing faith. This just seems again to be part of the dualism of your religion. In same way as you there is possibility of salvation for the Anton born to his parents, so there is no way for the world to be saved.

          • Anton

            God has prescribed how the world will be saved: by the bodily return of Jesus Christ to it in power. Until then it will go to hell in a handcart and we Christians shall be saved from it. Meanwhile, we preach and stand against evil in it, and many of us get martyred for that.

          • Albert

            This I think comes back to the heart of our the original discussion. Is nature perfected by grace or not. I say it is and that therefore, (i) to ensure justice for all, the Church must do its best to see the law upholds the natural law, (ii) to ensure the world is as open as possible to grace, the Church must do its best to see the law holds the natural law. It is surely more easy to save a person in a generally Christian culture, or at least morally decent culture than one that has completely lost the plot. That is why God prepared for the coming of Christ by creating a provisional culture in the OT.

          • Anton

            Scripture is clear that the world will worsen before Jesus comes back bodily. That is no reason not to preach or to stand against evil, of course.

          • Albert

            I have explained why the church as a body should not be in politics and you gave no counter-argument but merely labelled me an antinomian.

            In denying your major premise, I countered your argument with an argument against antinomianism. In what sense you do think I did not give a counter-argument, then?

          • Anton

            There is a subset of Christians who find themselves in politics, but they are not “the church”; they are simply part of the church.

          • Albert

            But this based on antinomianism, which itself seems to be a consequence of your negative view of the salvific potential (zero, I think you believe) of God’s creation.

          • Anton

            You seem to think that calling me antinomian is sufficient rebuttal of my argument. In fact it simply is not to the point. We are not saved for anarchy but to offer Christ to others and to stand against evil. If you don’t like the fact that the world is nevertheless prophesied to get worse before Christ returns, take it up with God!

          • Albert

            You seem to think that calling me antinomian is sufficient rebuttal of my argument.

            You seem to think that misrepresenting my position is sufficient rebuttal of it. I have not simply called you antinomian, I have given evidence that antinomianism is false. You have not answered this argument.

            We are not saved for anarchy but to offer Christ to others and to stand against evil.

            Yes, and standing against evil might mean protecting the just rights of the innocent. This might mean campaigning for a change in the law. Is it your view that the Church should not campaign against abortion?

          • bluedog

            ‘Then that is smashed by the Protestant Reformation.’

            No, it was smashed by the Black Death when one third of Christian Europe died despite their piety, and Rome was powerless to save them. For any form of revolution to take hold there must be pre-existing conditions for its spread. A ‘settled’ and contented people will not revolt and will ignore what they see as false claims. After the population had been decimated by the plague, we start to see the emergence of bibles translated into the local language, cf Wycliff. This in itself implied a rejection of the authority of Rome.

          • Albert

            No, it was smashed by the Black Death when one third of Christian Europe died despite their piety, and Rome was powerless to save them.

            Just a moment. The Black Death at best showed that the clergy too were sinners, that hardly smashes the settled faith of Europe.

            For any form of revolution to take hold there must be pre-existing conditions for its spread.

            But that of course is the problem. The Protestant Reformation is hardly a popular revolution in England, being largely unpopular and imposed from above. In Germany, the conditions were different, and the Protestant Reformation was much less successful. However, even here, what we do not find is everyone falling for Luther’s doctrine, we just find the chaos of everyone reading scripture for himself, and to Luther’s surprise (but no body else’s) often coming to a different view from him.

            we start to see the emergence of bibles translated into the local language, cf Wycliff

            No we don’t. They already existed. What we find is a more literate population and therefore there is more call for such Bibles and before long, printing makes it easier to produce whole versions. Prior to that, few people could read and those who could could read in Latin and so the translation was unnecessary. You are reading your own desires into history.

            This in itself implied a rejection of the authority of Rome.

            No it didn’t. If it did, then Rome was being rejected centuries earlier.

            One can argue that the development of the printing press undermined Rome’s ideological grip too.

            Now that is certainly true.

          • bluedog

            Surely your comment about Hinduism is wrong. The constitution adopted by India, largely at the instigation of the Old Harrovian Joe Nehru, was profoundly secular, liberal and democratic. One can therefore argue that the emerging resistance of Hinduism to that secular constitution, as exemplified by Modi, reflects a rejection of 70 years of secular dominion. Quite how far this goes remains to be seen, but the Muslims have yet to respond to the development.

            Where’s IvanM when you need him?

          • Albert

            Surely your comment about Hinduism is wrong. The constitution adopted by India, largely at the instigation of the Old Harrovian Joe Nehru, was profoundly secular, liberal and democratic.

            The issue is culture, not constitution. My experience of Indian Catholics is that they are instinctively very religious, in a way that makes any Western Christian, no matter how faithful, look rather secular. It is mistaken to think that secular style constitution means a country of the size and educational (or lack of it) diversity of India suddenly becomes culturally secular.

            One can therefore argue that the emerging resistance of Hinduism to that secular constitution, as exemplified by Modi, reflects a rejection of 70 years of secular dominion.

            I would say it is more like the situation in Iran under the Shah. The religious culture remains and eventually boils over:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S1PdGQzADkE (start at about 3 minutes).

            These people don’t look very secular either:

            http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-21395425

  • dannybhoy

    Great stuff Mrs Proudie!
    “The shadows are growing long across the Palace lawns, which means I must dash. My Lord the Bishop is hosting a gathering of traditionalist Anglican clergy this evening, which means we are dining alone.”
    Many a true word spoken in jest..

    • Albert

      All of this worrying about the CofE’s descent reminds me of some comments of the great Protestant theologian, Karl Barth on liberal Protestantism vs Catholicism:

      if I were forced to choose between these two evils [sic], I would in fact rather become a Catholic.
      ….
      Seen from within, there exists little cause for the struggle against Rome today, but oh, how much house-cleaning we have to do in our own house!

      how frightening the historical situation is, how vast the chasm, how immense the task facing the Protestant theologian, how justified one must be when confronting this reality to throw up one’s hand’s in despair, or (look, they are waving at us from the other shore!) —become a Catholic.

      Barth was saying this kind of stuff 100 years ago! It’s not getting any better. Come on, dive in, the Tiber is warm and not as wide as you think.

      • Coniston

        On the other hand the Catholics seem to have the same problem. See:
        http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/issues/july-14th-2017/can-anything-stop-catholic-infighting/

        • Albert

          Damian Thompson is not always the fairest commentator. But yes, there are problems even in the Church, but we’re a long way from the CofE, and there is nothing to stop the CofE falling into heresy and schism. But we have the promises of Christ! Whatever the failings of the leadership on earth, the faith of the Church will remain until he comes again.

          • Catholics also have the inspired doctrines of Magisterium indefectibility and infallibility to protect the Church from accommodating herself to the modern world.

        • Cressida de Nova

          Thanks for this article. I found it very interesting. Damian Thompson if you are reading this post , contact me. I can explain transubstantiation to you.

      • Anton

        Barth was a waffle-monger who wouldn’t answer simple Yes-No questions about the empty tomb and Resurrection. He seems to me to be using language in the same deceitful way as the liberals he claimed to be against. Then there is his universalism. He simply isn’t worth getting into. Waste of a lot of time given the size of his Church Dogmatics.

        • Albert

          I’m not a fan of his universalism obviously but I think to say he was a waffle monger and was unclear on the resurrection seems to me to be surprising. What is your evidence for this?

          • Anton

            Yes, it surprised me too. See

            http://postbarthian.com/2015/03/15/karl-barth-demythologizing-empty-tomb-ascension/

            CS Lewis wrote of the academic theologians of his time that “They’ve all been reading a dreadful man called Karl Barth”:

            https://mereinkling.net/2016/08/16/tolkien-lewis-barth-on-myth/

            If you want a real irony, Pius XII (at one time, anyway) considered Barth the greatest theologian since Aquinas, as this latter link documents.

            PS I should add that my views are not secondhand. I have ploughed through English translations of Barth’s “Dogmatics in Outline” and his commentary on Romans (the latter the work that shot him to fame).

          • Albert

            I think you’ve perhaps read more Barth than I have, but recall him railing against those who denied the virgin birth. Belief in the virgin birth is a bit of a litmus test in my view. And my reading of Barth on the resurrection is that he most assuredly believed in it (in the way that you and I would, I mean). I would never present the idea the way he does (on your first link) because it would lead to confusion, but it is clear he does hold the tomb was empty.

            This means that for a body to be resurrected, then the tomb must be empty, as a point of deduction or syllogism.

            I.e. our faith is not in the empty tomb (and it isn’t) but in the resurrection (which it is), and since it is in the resurrection, the tomb was empty. The empty tomb is an inference from the article of faith, not the faith itself. It is what the manuals would call Sententia certa. For Barth, as I read him, the accounts of the empty tomb may as well be legendary, pointing to the resurrection, but the tomb was assuredly empty:

            “[The Empty Tomb is] indispensable if we are to understand what the New Testament seeks to proclaim as the Easter message.”

            “Hence it [The Empty Tomb] is only the sign, although an indispensable sign.”

            The empty tomb and the ascension are merely signs of the Easter event, just as the Virgin Birth is merely the sign of the nativity, namely, of the human generation and birth of the eternal Son of God. Yet both signs are so important that we can hardly say that they might equally well be omitted.

            The comparison with the virgin birth is instructive. The virgin birth is the sign of the divinity of Christ, it isn’t the divinity of Christ itself. In the same way the empty tomb is the sign of the resurrection, but not the resurrection itself.

            The empty tomb is not the same thing as the resurrection. It is not the appearance of the Living; it is only its presupposition. Hence it is only the sign, although an indispensable sign. Christians do not believe in the empty tomb, but in the living Christ. This does not mean, however, that we can believe in the living Christ without believing in the empty tomb. Is it just a “legend”? What matter? It still refers to the phenomenon ensuing the resurrection, to the presupposition of the appearance of Jesus. It is the sign which obviates all possible misunderstanding. It cannot, therefore, but demand our assent, even as a legend.

            Hence the article of faith is the resurrection, we do not assent in the Creed to the empty tomb (even though we necessarily believe in it).

          • Anton

            Yes, Barth does believe in the virgin birth just like we do, ie Mary didn’t have any sexual contact with a man at least before she gave birth to Christ. As for the empty tomb, it depends what you mean by “believe in”. If the object of “belief in” is required to be a volitional being then obviously nobody can “believe in” the empty tomb; but all Christians should believe that the tomb was empty because the gospels are explicit about it, and should “believe in” the resurrected and living Lord Jesus Christ. Why complicate the simplicity of these things unnecessarily, as Barth does?

            I think you are right that Lewis’ *immediate* criticism of Barth is his Calvinism, but the whole of that letter is worth reading, at p62 of

            http://cnqzu.com/library/Philosophy/neoreaction/_extra%20authors/Lewis,%20C.%20S/60614368-C-S-Lewis-Yours-Jack.pdf

          • Albert

            Yes, so I think Barth is more open to the criticism of waffle than being dodgy on the resurrection.

            Regarding Lewis, I’m probably nearer Calvin than he was. I see no reason at all why God’s judgements should make sense to us. In any case, who is “us”? Modern bien passant liberals? Barbaric tribesmen? It seems that we don’t have strong enough judgement ourselves to expect God to submit to our judgement.

          • Anton

            I mistrust the motives of anybody who complicates the Empty Tomb issue and the phrase “believe in” like Barth does.

          • Albert

            That’s not unreasonable, but it feels here like we are hearing only one part of a phone call. I would like to know the context in which Barth is speaking. It’s clear he does believe as we do, but he complicates matters. Is that because of his interlocutor?

          • Anton

            Dogmatics In Outline and Römerbrief was enough for me. I’m not going to plough through all 13 volumes of the Kirchliche Dogmatik which is what it would take to answer your question competently!

          • Albert

            PS isn’t Lewis’ criticism of Barth that Barth is too Calvinist:

            They don’t think human reason or human conscience of any value at all: they maintain, as stoutly as Calvin, that there’s no reason why God’s dealings should appear just (let alone, merciful) to us: and they maintain the doctrine that all our righteousness is filthy rags with a fierceness and sincerity which is like a blow in the face.

          • dannybhoy

            http://postbarthian.com/201
            Oh, I see what you mean..
            Regarding the empty tomb, do I as a Christian have a problem with the different accounts re the resurrection accounts?
            Umm, no.
            I don’t need to re-interpret or super spiritualise it to make it intellectually palatable.

          • Albert

            But I don’t think that’s Barth’s point.

          • dannybhoy

            So what do you understand his point to be Albert?
            (keep it simple – children present)

          • Albert

            I explained it in a long post to Anton. It’s to do with the fact that or faith is not in the empty tomb, but in the resurrection. The empty tomb is inferred from faith, and is not an article of faith.

      • dannybhoy

        “if I were forced to choose between these two evils [sic], I would in fact rather become a Catholic.”
        I wouldn’t rule it out if it came to that, but knowing practically nothing of Karl Barth’s theology I would have to read more.
        Would I cope being in a Catholic church? I doubt it, for the same reasons I struggle with traditional Anglicanism.
        Hierarchy and the abuse of power.
        Men dressed in frocks/robes which give them the appearance of ‘being separate and more than…’
        I had my fill of respecting hierarchical authority at naval boarding school, where the powers that be closed ranks to protect the established order. I understand why they did, but I still didn’t like it.
        I do believe in authority, but in an authority that comes with the anointing power of the Holy Spirit on a yielded and sanctified life and ministry.
        So within the Catholic and Anglican traditions one may find clergy/priests who are indeed saintly men and therefore a blessing and inspiration to their congregants.
        If you ever saw that old Dirk Bogarde film, “The Singer not the Song”, you will know what I mean.
        The church where I came to faith was led by the Reverend John Collins, supported by talented and committed curates and lay readers. Hence one could respect the authority and intention (they didn’t always get it right!) of the leadership.

        • Albert

          I think abuse of power is a problem in any human situation. It’s just that the abuse is different in different contexts. Congregationalists often fall prey to an aggressive but charismatic leader who knows little..

          • dannybhoy

            Also true, but we have the freedom to move. One’s ‘spiritual antennae’ are always alert to what is being taught, and certainly there are charismatic authoritarian personalities that lead Christians astray.
            But as I understand it, any Christian who has been born of the Holy Spirit will always find find their way to balanced teaching and fellowship. Let’s not forget the core of our relationship is with God the Father through the Son, enabled by the Holy Spirit, and He will always lead us to good pasture.

            Consider the words of Jesus..
            “Teacher,” said John, “we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”
            “Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us. I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.”
            —Mark 9:38-41, NIV

          • Albert

            I think that as I see it, being a member of the visible body of Christ is a key part of having a real living relationship with Christ. The individualism of Protestantism, so suited to the modern culture, is repugnant to the ecclesial vision of scripture.

          • Anton

            Ditto the politicisation of Catholicism!

          • Albert

            It would depend on what you mean by the politicisation. Clearly there has been sin, but that does not incriminate the whole model.

          • Anton

            Gospel Christianity is entirely about the transformation of the individual in a way that he or she cannot do for himself (herself). That cannot be legislated. Politics is about law. Ergo, true Christianity is nothing to do with politics. Where Christians happen to be in politics they can work toward good laws – inspired by Mosaic Law but not verbatim – but that is additional to their living the gospel, not as well as, and the church as an institution should not be in politics.

          • Our faith and our politics should be compatible – what we believe about politics and what we believe about God need to be coherent and consistent. The real question is how to put our Christian faith before our politics. The good of the human person and caring for our neighbour is a Christian concern. The human person requires certain conditions to flourish. Some of those conditions are moral. Some are physical. Some are economic. Some are social. Both the bodily and spiritual needs of persons need to be addressed.

          • Anton

            Most certainly, but it is our business simply to be members of the kingdom of heaven wherever we find ourselves.

          • …. and that means promoting and spreading the Kingdom and the values Jesus taught us.

          • Anton

            Yes, but not via the law.

          • By persuading the public to support laws that are in the common good, promote and protect the vulnerable and marginalised, and to change laws that do not. That’s politics.

          • Anton

            Indeed, but the kingdom is not promoted and spread by the imposition of moral laws. That is what 90% of the Old Testament is about, is it not? The kingdom is spread by conversion to Christ.

          • Albert

            Gospel Christianity is entirely about the transformation of the individual in a way that he or she cannot do for himself (herself). That cannot be legislated. Politics is about law. Ergo, true Christianity is nothing to do with politics.

            That’s just far too slick. The Gospel is about the former, but the Church still exists in the world and has certain opportunities and responsibilities. These, in different ways and at different times, result sometimes in a political life. You would have the Church remain silent about abuses in society?

          • Anton

            I would not have *Christians* remain silent. You are presuming a certain structure of church.

          • Albert

            So in the end, your opposition is to a certain structure of the Church, not the Church being political.

          • Anton

            No; that is consistent with what I am saying but does not follow from it.

          • dannybhoy

            But Christians do not remain silent.
            William Wilberforce
            Earl of Shaftesbury
            John Newton
            William Gladstone
            General Booth..

          • Albert

            Certainly, but if these individual Christians do so, should not say a bishop do so? And if he campaigns against (say) slavery is he not being political? I find Anton’s distinction hard to understand. On the one hand he denies that the church should be an institution, and thinks it is simply the people, and yet if the people are political, he thinks the institution is not political.

          • dannybhoy

            And if he campaigns against (say) slavery is he not being political?
            I don’t think so. He (Wilberforce) was acting on his Christian belief that men should not be slaves, and using the liberties afforded him in those times to campaign against his country’s involvement.
            Of course back then the Bible exercised a far greater degree of influence than it does now.
            ‘On the one hand he denies that the church should be an institution, and thinks it is simply the people, and yet if the people are political, he thinks the institution is not political.’
            I cannot answer for Anton, but I would say that yes, many of us want a voice of authority to speak up for our faith. I would be happy for the CofE to give a lead if the majority represented and were loyal to the faith. I would love a national day of prayer and repentance led by the AofC.
            If the Vatican were to give a lead in defence of the faith and invite all Christians to join in, I would.
            But as you said yourself earlier Albert, there is always an abuse of power to consider.

          • Albert

            And if he campaigns against (say) slavery is he not being political?
            I don’t think so.

            The distinction seems too fine to me.

          • dannybhoy

            Well perhaps it is a fine distinction. In a democratic secular society we have rights and responsibilities as citizens. As Christians we exercise those rights for the good of all and especially the Gospel.

          • Albert

            Of course, no one is disagreeing with that, but does not the Church as an institution also have such rights and responsibilities?

          • dannybhoy

            If the Church -and you mean the Roman Catholic Church, could show that there were no coverups, no hiding of scandals, no dubious bank deals or any other thing to stain her Christian witness, then yes, I think she should.
            The difference between your Church and the Church of England is that whilst the CofE seems to have totally lost its way, and its leadership seems wet, woolly and gutless; the Vatican seems mysterious, authoritarian, full of intrigue and sexual abuses.
            If it is essentially no different from any other human organisation, what kind of moral authority can it exercise?
            http://listverse.com/2014/07/14/10-scandals-that-rocked-the-vatican/
            Now please please don’t see this as an attack. I offer it only in support of what I wrote above.
            Whether it is true or not I do not know.

          • Albert

            If the Church -and you mean the Roman Catholic Church, could show that there were no coverups, no hiding of scandals, no dubious bank deals or any other thing to stain her Christian witness, then yes, I think she should.

            Of course, the sinfulness of Church members and leaders is a grave scandal. But sinfulness is where we are at the moment as human beings, so the standard you set is too high and the Church would not be able to do anything on your standard. But Christ clearly calls the Church to action, even though he knows better than anyone that we are all sinners.

            The difference between your Church and the Church of England is that whilst the CofE seems to have totally lost its way, and its leadership seems wet, woolly and gutless; the Vatican seems mysterious, authoritarian, full of intrigue and sexual abuses.

            Do you switch off every time the CofE comes up? The former Archbishop of Canterbury has recently been forced to resign because of his alleged part in a cover-up. But at the same time there is the Matt Ineson case. The Catholic Church in this country publishes its child abuse figures every year, the last I checked, the CofE did not. Indeed, the Matt Ineson case reveals that the CofE is still miles behind the curve on safeguarding – and in fact it was only fairely recently, the CofE changed its rules to enable it to discipline a vicar in office (or something like that, there was some weird rule about the freehold or something). Bizarrely, the CofE got rid of its right to defrock abusing clergy in 2003! Then there’s the whole Iwerne Trust scandal – just to show that sex abuse affects Evangelicals too.

            Now when you say the Vatican seems mysterious, authoritarian, full of intrigue what do you mean? Because that seems to describe how Rev Ineson has been treated, and, as he points out, if they are doing it to him, who else are they doing it to?

            Now as to the link, I think firstly you need to recognise the difference in scale. The whole Anglican communion represents about 4% of all Christians. The Catholic Church is over 50%. Obviously, therefore, it is much easier to find examples of Catholic sin than Anglican sin, especially as, obviously, Europe was much more unstable than the UK between the wars. Now if Hitler had managed to invade Britain in 1940, do you honestly think there would be no examples of Anglican clergy colluding with the Nazis? We know there were examples of this sort of thing, even without the invasion! (Although to be clear, this was probably unusual, given the circumstances.)

            The Reverend Morley Headlam was an Anglican bishop who defended Hitler’s suppression of religious freedom before a church assembly, arguing that Nazis saw their cause as “a real representation of Christianity.” The Editor of the London Times, Geoffrey Dawson published the bishop’s sermons in full while consigning dispatches from his own Berlin correspondent, describing the imprisonment of German clergymen, to the wastebasket.

            http://www.mypracticalphilosophy.com/shelp/appeasementhitler.htm

            In contrast, 94.9% of clergy in the clergy wing at Dachau were Catholic priests.

            And how do you think the CofE would cope now? It just rolls over for whatever the secular regulation issue belief is. But Catholicism stands firm.

            Moreover, when you have scandal linked to an individual who works in the Vatican, you seem willing to accept the Vatican is involved. The Vatican has the unfortunate position of being in Italy, so issues involving Italian scandal (e.g. mafia) may well involve people who work there. Some Italian scandals go right to the top of Government.
            Given the geography and history, it would be odd if this didn’t in some way implicate persons in the Vatican. The Salvation Army was recently implicated in a massive fraud and malfeasance:

            https://www.thestar.com/news/crime/2017/04/26/salvation-army-executive-guilty-of-massive-toy-for-profit-fraud.html

            http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1352343/Salvation-Army-millionaire-William-Booth-makes-fortune-donated-clothes.html

            and there are other examples of other things. But only gross lack of charity on the part of a Christian would make someone draw a negative conclusion about the SA from that. On the contrary, I would see the SA as a victim of that sort of abuse. Why then do you Protestants not apply the same rules of charity to Catholics? Is your faith so lacking in content and defence that you have to defend yourselves by hypocritically pointing out the sins in others?

          • dannybhoy

            Good morning Albert!
            I have a head cold, we had a lousy night’s sleep, and I am only staying up because I have a regular weekly appointment to skype a very dear friend in Orstralia.
            First and foremost I see myself as a Christian. Not a Protestant Christian nor an Anglican Christian, just a Christian. I have no loyalty or affiliation to any church denomination. There are either spiritually alive churches or spiritually dead ones.
            There are Christians and there are Churchians.
            You asked me,
            ” Of course, no one is disagreeing with that, but does not the Church as an institution also have such rights and responsibilities?”
            and I tried to answer it.
            I did say I was not /not/not attacking the Roman Catholic Church nor defending the Anglican Church.
            So your comment starting at..
            Now as to the link, I think firstly you need to recognise the difference in scale.
            ..was wasted on me. Frankly I am not interested.
            I only posted it to show how people see the Church, whether Catholic or Anglican.
            I hate hypocrisy, I hate religiosity. I dislike the gold and silver and bishop’s paIaces.
            I would like to see more church discipline exercised, so that the world can see we Christians do not excuse or hide our wrongdoings, but bring them into the light. Of course I believe in repentance and forgiveness, but not covering things up (Anglican or otherwise). If any organisation should be transparent and morally upright it should be the Church.
            Why then do you Protestants not apply the same rules of charity to Catholics? Is your faith so lacking in content and defence that you have to defend yourselves by hypocritically pointing out the sins in others?
            Why is it suddenly ‘you Protestants’?
            I thought we had agreed we are all Christians?

          • Albert

            I am sorry to hear about your cold and hope you get better soon.

            First and foremost I see myself as a Christian. Not a Protestant Christian nor an Anglican Christian, just a Christian. I have no loyalty or affiliation to any church denomination. There are either spiritually alive churches or spiritually dead ones.

            But that means you’re a Protestant, since no Catholic (or Orthodox) could see it that way. We do not see the Church as some kind of optional extra but something given as a gift, at the very hear of the essence of Christianity.

            ..was wasted on me. Frankly I am not interested.
            I only posted it to show how people see the Church, whether Catholic or Anglican.

            But the link was part of your answer.

            I hate hypocrisy, I hate religiosity. I dislike the gold and silver and bishop’s paIaces.

            But what is religiosity? And what’s wrong with beautiful churches? I’m more with you on bishop’s palaces, but in defence of (say) CofE bishop’s palaces, they are these days more likely to be administrative offices with a flat for the bishop. What would you have done with Lambeth Palace, for example?

            I would like to see more church discipline exercised, so that the world can see we Christians do not excuse or hide our wrongdoings, but bring them into the light.

            When canon lawyers in the Catholic Church were first being asked to create cases to prosecute in church courts, abusing priests, they didn’t know how to do it. The law was there in the Code, but they had been taught that the Gospel was all about grace, not law, and so the idea of prosecutions had never been taught to them (as it had been in earlier generations). This antinominianism, even amongst canon lawyers was part of the Rhine flowing into the Tiber.

          • dannybhoy

            But what is religiosity? And what’s wrong with beautiful churches?
            Religiosity is when all is outward show with no sincerity of devotion. It’s what Jesus said …
            “27 ‘Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which on the outside look beautiful, but inside they are full of the bones of the dead and of all kinds of filth. 28 So you also on the outside look righteous to others, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”
            Secondly,
            But that means you’re a Protestant, since no Catholic (or Orthodox) could see it that way. We do not see the Church as some kind of optional extra but something given as a gift, at the very hear of the essence of Christianity.

            1 Corinthians 12:12-27 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition
            One Body with Many Members
            12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

            and same chapter..
            “27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.”
            It really can’t get much clearer than that Albert, now can it?
            The Church the Body of Christ is a mystical union of believers from all over the world united with our Lord as the Head.
            So I am a part of that Church. as is any other believer.
            I recognise the need to pray for my leaders, to support them etc., providing that they themselves are living up to their calling.

          • Albert

            Religiosity is when all is outward show with no sincerity of devotion.

            If that’s what you mean then I agree, but how do you determine when that is true of someone else? Did not even Elizabeth I know she could not make windows onto men’s souls?

            It really can’t get much clearer than that Albert, now can it?
            The Church the Body of Christ is a mystical union of believers from all over the world joined with our Lord as the Head.
            So I am a part of that Church. as is any other believer.

            I think this is over simplified. Paul makes it clear he can cut individuals off from the Church, and our Lord gives such authority:

            “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.
            [16] But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses.
            [17] If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

            Notice here that he is a brother – i.e. a believer. But he is cut off by sin, lack of repentance and refusing to listen even to the church. Divisiveness itself is a cause for separation:

            Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them.

            And the same thing is clearly true of heresy:

            But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preached to you, let him be accursed.
            [9] As we have said before, so now I say again, If any one is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.

            Thus it isn’t enough to just quote 1 Corinthians and infer everything from it. And from a Catholic point of view, this is the problem with Protestantism all over – there is far too much inference from a few passages, at the expense of the whole. Thus, being a full member of the Church is more than just believing in Christ, it is about avoiding heresy and schism too.

          • dannybhoy

            But I agree with all those passages you quote!
            but how do you determine when that is true of someone else? Did not even Elizabeth I know she could not make windows onto men’s souls?
            Through fellowship, through meeting together as a congregation of believers.
            Hence your…
            “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.
            [16] But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses.
            [17] If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

            That’s what we should do as Christians.
            I think this is over simplified. Paul makes it clear he can cut individuals off from the Church, and our Lord gives such authority:
            That’s called church discipline Albert. I don’t have a problem with that, I believe it.
            So it seems to me that touching on Scripture we agree.I can’t really understand why you feel there must be something wrong when Christians outside of the Catholic Church agree with you on the authority of Scripture and how the early Church conducted itself.
            What else is there to disagree upon?

          • Albert

            That’s what we should do as Christians.

            That deals with manifest public sin, not religiosity which is harder to observe. For example, I have often heard young evangelical Christians complaining of older Christians being insincere because they are just going through the motions of the liturgy. But how can anyone make that judgement of someone else, especially if the liturgical form is something they haven’t grasped for themselves?

            That’s called church discipline Albert. I don’t have a problem with that, I believe it.

            Then you agree it is not enough for someone to just say “I believe in Jesus” and that is enough for them to be a member of the Church.

            So it seems to me that touching on Scripture we agree.I can’t really understand why you feel there must be something wrong when Christians outside of the Catholic Church agree with you on the authority of Scripture and how the early Church conducted itself.
            What else is there to disagree upon?

            We’re only agreeing on the things we are talking about and then only because you keep surprising me by agreeing! 🙂 We are disagreeing on the fundamental need for the visible Church.

          • dannybhoy

            “Then you agree it is not enough for someone to just say”I believe in Jesus” and that is enough for them to be a member of the Church.”

            We already agreed that one some posts ago.

            “For example, I have often heard young evangelical Christians complaining of older Christians being insincere because they are just going through the motions of the liturgy. But how can anyone make that judgement of someone else, especially if the liturgical form is something they haven’t grasped for themselves?”
            Yes this is also true, but through regular fellowship prayer and worship one gets to know more about where a person is at.
            In fact I often say to people that if the core of a congregation is made up of devout folks you can accommodate others who may be elsewhere on the spectrum, seekers or hurt people or whatever..

            You should not be surprised that we agree, it’s just this thing about the visible Church i.e. Anglican or Catholic, and the invisible Church; those believers who whatever their Church affiliation worship Christ Jesus first and foremost.

          • Albert

            In fact I often say to people that if the core of a congregation is made up of devout folks you can accommodate others who may be elsewhere on the spectrum, seekers or hurt people or whatever..

            Yes, but if the question is about religiosity then I just don’t think we are normally in the position to accuse someone of it. After all, even if someone is openly wicked, they may be inwardly sincere in their repentance.

            You should not be surprised that we agree, it’s just this thing about the visible Church i.e. Anglican or Catholic, and the invisible Church; those believers who whatever their Church affiliation worship Christ Jesus first and foremost.

            What is the Biblical basis for this invisible church?

          • dannybhoy

            This article is fairly informative albeit lengthy..
            https://bible.org/seriespage/8-ecclesiology-church

            What I read of this article I liked..
            http://www.bible.ca/ntx-church-not-named.htm

            Revelation 1:4 “John to the seven churches that are in Asia”:

            1:20 “As for the mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.

            It is clear from the Bible that Christianity is essentially relational. The two greatest commandments call us to be right related to God and to one another: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind”; and, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:37, 39)
            https://bible.org/seriespage/lesson-29-fellowship-saints-philippians-421-23
            (Sorry I’m still feeling rather rough..)

            Anyway there are no passages or verses that tell us our Risen Lord will return to a church/chapel/cathedral or the Vatican or Lambeth Palace.
            Sorry my friend, I’ve gone all hot and bothered and feak and weeble..
            (What a wuss!)
            Talk later.

          • Albert

            Sorry to hear you’re still under the weather.

            From the article:

            The term ekklesia in the NT can refer to the “church of God” meeting in a home (Rom 16:5), in a particular city (1 Cor 1:2; 1 Thess 1:1), in a region (Acts 9:31) or a larger area such as Asia itself (1 Cor 16:19). When these data are taken together we realize that the church is a universal body composed of all true believers in Christ, united in Him by the Spirit, and that there are particular geographical expressions of it here and there and throughout history. Thus, though there are many local “churches,” there is really only one church (Eph 4:4; Heb 12:23).45

            This leads naturally to the idea that the church is both visible and invisible.

            Well it does not follow logically. Catholics believe in the local Church (e.g. England and Wales) and the universal Church (i.e. the wider visible Catholic Church). What follows obviously, is that there is a visible local Church and a visible universal Church. So there does not appear to an argument for Protestant ecclesiology here.

            It is invisible in that God knows who is truly a Christian and who is not. It is visible in that there are local expressions of it to which Christians commit themselves.

            Firstly, this is now just an assertion of the position, since no argument has been offered for it.

            Secondly, it is contradictory, since there are local expressions of the Church, but whether these really are Churches rests on whether the members really are Christians or not. But this is invisible to us, and visible only to God. Therefore, there is no visible Church. But there is a visible Church, for Jesus says:

            You are the light of the world–like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

            Therefore, the ecclesiology is not only unsubstantiated (and therefore fails by the standard of sola scriptura), it is also demonstrably false. Moreover, the document and the theology fail to take account of the fact that the Church can expel members, not just for heresy (which might be taken to mean the person expelled is not a Christian) but also for sin and schism. Now this implies it is possible to be a Christian while having been expelled from the Church. But the article says This leads naturally to the idea that the church is both visible and invisible. It is invisible in that God knows who is truly a Christian and who is not. In other words a Christian can be justly expelled from the Church but still be in it. And this is just contradictory. The contradiction is then all the more powerful if it is a group that is expelled. As genuine Christians they are genuinely part of the Church, but as legitimately expelled Christians, they are not part of the Church.

            Thus being part of the Church cannot be determined by whether one is a Christian or not, and so the Church is a concept prior to being a Christian. And this ought to be obvious, since the Church is the body of Christ with Christ as its head. How can that concept be logically inferior to the individual Christian. You see, this is where evangelical ecclesiology just makes no sense!

            Of course, if an Evangelical church expels a member this way, he will simply wipe the dust from his feet and say they are not really the Church. And who’s to say who is right? Both think they are genuine Christians and only God knows who is! But if we recognize that the Church is a visible body, founded by Christ and preserved by him, whatever the sins of its members, then none of these problems arise.

            The article further assumes that being a Christian is logically prior to being the Church (This leads naturally to the idea that the church is both visible and invisible. It is invisible in that God knows who is truly a Christian and who is not.) but this is nonsensical, for if this were true, sola scriptura and the perspcuity of scripture would both be true, but neither is biblical (there is no text that would serve to prove either doctrine by sola scriptura) and both have passages against the doctrine. Moreover:

            It is clear from the Bible that Christianity is essentially relational.

            This is the key point. Christianity is not first and foremost a teaching (like the Bible) but a living relationship. Now of course, there is no relationship without the teaching for we cannot love what we do not know. However, the teaching is in the service of the relationship, not the other way around. And so Christ founds not a scripture but a body of people in relationship with himself the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

          • dannybhoy

            Morning Albert,
            (I am debating whether to visit our doctor and enquire after my health.. I have asthma/COPD so it could be a chest infection)
            Anyway my cyberfriend (you rather remind me of Martin. He and I had long discussions on predestination and the depravity of human nature..)

            Firstly, this is now just an assertion of the position, since no argument has been offered for it.

          • Albert

            I’m sorry to hear you’re not well. I’m also sorry to hear that I remind you of Martin. I wish you well.

          • dannybhoy

            Ha! very droll.
            No, I enjoy these exchanges as I did with Martin, because it makes you re-think and re-read what you believe, and perhaps make adjustments. Even though I still basically disagree with Martin he did cause me to reflect and clarify some of my thinking on salvation!
            Now you must go and read the rest of my post..
            I shall be out for the next few hours..

          • Albert

            Martin is very extreme and does not seem to me to know much scripture.

          • dannybhoy

            Martin defends his beliefs with vigour and tenacity. Like a well constructed boomerang he always comes back with another argument…

          • Albert

            Does he? He seems to me to ignore any argument or passage that disagrees with him, or pretends without argument that it agrees with him.

          • dannybhoy

            If he were in my church or home group it might come to a parting of the ways, but as it is we can ‘duel at a distance.’
            Besides, I rather think his heart is in the right place…if not his theology.

          • Albert

            Tell him you’re a Catholic and then decide if his heart is in the right place! He perhaps thinks you’re no more of a Christian than he thinks I am.

          • dannybhoy

            Chortles!
            If you look back over your own walk of faith, don’t you see times when you believed something that you now no longer do?
            I have, and being of an argumentative nature, I loved getting into discussions and arguing my point. But in later years the Lord showed me that I might win an argument and lose a seeker or a brother in the faith. So now I share my views (not always asked for, I must admit..) but I do my best to see a work of grace in the other person and treat them with love and graciousness.

            Matthew 18 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition
            15 ‘If another member of the church[d] sins against you,[e] go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone. If the member listens to you, you have regained that one.[f] 16 But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you, so that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17 If the member refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a Gentile and a tax-collector.
            Oh btw I remember you have an interest in our Jewish friends , perhaps you will find this site of interest..
            http://www.biblewalks.com/index.html
            I lived in Israel for a total of five years, and never knew as much about the Old City of Jerusalem..
            Further to that. I have a cyber friend, a Catholic author who has written some excellent books about Jesus..

            https://www.amazon.com/Robert-J.-
            Hutchinson/e/B001H9PT4A/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1
            His website..http://roberthutchinson.com/

            Robert and I never met in Israel, but we share a love of the country and are both fairly fluent in Hebrew.
            (Although Robert is far more learned than I). Anyway I am trying to get him over here to share his knowledge and experiences, with some Catholic and er, other Christian groups.. And if we don’t fall out over the Mass, he may stay with us a while.
            I would love this to happen.
            You can read his books in a good conscience; he is a devout Catholic and knows that I am an evangelical…..

          • Anton

            There is no such person as Bishop Morley Headlam; the references upon which you depend are not reliable. Please also see my comment to Danny just above.

          • Albert

            I think the article is wrong to say he was a bishop – it’s classic historian ecclesial illiteracy, but that there was a clergyman of that name is confirmed here:

            http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/16663

          • Anton

            The man on that memorial is not the man you had in mind, however. The apologist for Hitler was Bishop Arthur Cayley Headlam of Gloucester (son of Rev Arthur William Headlam of County Durham). The bishop’s brother, Sir James Wycliffe Headlam, changed his surname to Headlam-Morley in 1918, but the bishop never did. Both brothers have their own Wikipedia entries.

          • Albert

            So in fact the story is worse than I was saying. It was a bishop who was an apologist for Hitler. Why didn’t you say so?

          • Anton

            I’m for accuracy, and I’m not an Anglican.

          • Anton

            That is the point at which you meet silence, Danny: if politicians or bankers engage in foul sex scandals it is legitimate to say that the world is a dark place, but if churchmen do it, given that the Christian claim is to be remade better and that they are to provide a moral lead, it is appalling.

            Albert is quite right that the proportion of paedophile priests is very small. But (a) how does it compare to the paedophile proportion in the general population; and (b) the proportion of RC bishops who covered it up having heard of it in their diocese appears to be 100%.

          • dannybhoy

            I have no axe to grind here Anton. This series of responses between Albert and I was to find common ground as regards what a Christian is and what the Church Universal is.
            I am really sorry if it sounded like I was attacking Albert’s Church. Perhaps I was trying to explain my dislike of organised religion, tradition and all that goes with it.

          • Albert

            It didn’t feel so much as an attack, as just hypocrisy. And of course, it is always easier to deny institutions, because then one only has to speak for one’s own behaviour. However, (i) Christianity is ecclesial whether people like it or not and (ii) as such a key element is bearing one another’s burdens. When Christ appeared to Saul he said “Why are you persecuting me?” Thus it isn’t so easy for a Christian to hermetically seal himself from the experiences of other Christians be they sinful or righteous.

          • Albert

            But (a) how does it compare to the paedophile proportion in the general population

            And your figures for that are?

            (b) the proportion of RC bishops who covered it up having heard of it in their diocese appears to be 100%.

            Again, the figures please – and compare that with the figures of other institutions. I am not for a moment expecting to exonerated by the figures, but I would like claims to be substantiated.

          • Anton

            Re (a) It was me asking the question! Did you genuinely misunderstand or were you posing as doing so?

            Re (b) – for the era of historic abuse in Ireland and the USA no bishop went to the secular authorities even though paedophilia was illegal.

            Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos, then the head of the Congregation for Clergy, based in Rome, wrote a letter on September 8th, 2001 to a bishop (Pican of Bayeux) commending him for refusing to inform French police of a paedophile priest: “I congratulate you for not denouncing a priest to the civil administration. You have acted well and I am pleased to have a colleague in the episcopate who, in the eyes of history… preferred prison to denouncing his son and priest.” These facts emerged after the priest in question had been sentenced to 18 years in jail; the bishop received 3 months suspended for failing to report him. Hoyos subsequently stated (in a speech on April 16th, 2010 at the Catholic university in Murcia, Spain) that when Pope John Paul II read Hoyos’ letter congratulating the bishop of Bayeux, he authorised Hoyos to copy it to all bishops. That is clear papal encouragement to defy national criminal law and deny justice to victims. Disgraceful!

          • Albert

            Re (a) It was me asking the question! Did you genuinely misunderstand or were you posing as doing so?

            Why do you even need to insinuate I was being insincere? You were not replying to me but to Danny, so why would I think you were asking me? And in the meantime, while not just give the benefit of the doubt?

            Re (b) – for the era of historic abuse in Ireland and the USA no bishop went to the secular authorities even though paedophilia was illegal.

            I don’t think that is correct, although I can’t remember where I read it, perhaps in the John Jay report. However, it’s not really a fair question. In Ireland for example, child abuse was sometimes reported by the police to the Church. While in England, paedophiles were being let off with a fine into the 1990s, so reporting to the police was not the magic bullet you might be thinking it is.

            I am no fan of Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos. But what is the evidence for your claim (beyond the Cardinal himself that is)? And what actually does the letter say? Do you have the full text?

          • Anton

            What do you mean by what is the evidence? Hoyos’ speech is the evidence. If you want to accuse him of lying, go ahead!

          • Albert

            I asked for the letter and evidence that JPII was involved. No I don’t have any difficulty mistrusting Hoyos. And you should be in the same position, after all, you’ve already accused him of disgraceful behaviour. And now he seems to blame someone else, who, being dead cannot defend himself, about a conversation which we have no other record of.

          • Anton

            Why mistrust Hoyos?

            Read this and notice the Vatican’s loud silence:

            http://traditioninaction.org/HotTopics/a01x_HoyosTells.html

          • Albert

            What I’m asking for is the text of the letter and the evidence of who was involved. Without that, it’s very hard to assess what has actually been said and what has been applauded and by whom.

            After all, can you find no circumstance in which a bishop should take the hit instead of his priest? It’s interesting that the Bishop who was sent to prison was in France, for the French secular state is a jealous god. Most states did not have such a law at the time.

            Moreover, in the case of paedophilia, we see the need to hand a priest over to the authorities because of the need to protect children, but they, as was the common view in that generation, tended to see the priest more as a sick man, a sinner in need of healing. What we do know is that the letter says:

            The bishop has other means of acting […] but a bishop cannot be required to make the denunciation himself. In all civilised legal systems it is acknowledged that close relations have the possibility of not testifying against a direct relative.

            Firstly, he is not saying the Bishop should do nothing, he is saying he should act differently. The reality is that the Vatican really did not know how rubbish the governance of the Church was in parts of the world (Hoyos himself once disguised himself as a milkman in order to confront drug kingpin Pablo Escobar and call him to repentance). JPII and Hoyos expected bishops to be heroic. They were not.

            Secondly, he appeals to a principle widely accepted: a bishop cannot be required to make the denunciation himself. In all civilised legal systems it is acknowledged that close relations have the possibility of not testifying against a direct relative. And this of course is why the bishop’s actions appeared laudable – he was standing up for the idea that a bishop is a father to his priests and he was standing against the idea that the secular state has a prior right over familial relationships. Now of course, we might reject the major premise of this argument, and you would reject the minor premise. But even from what we know this letter appears rather different from Hoyos suggesting that bishops should cover-up and just move the priest to another parish to abuse more children. Obviously, that shouldn’t happen, apart from anything else, it was against Church teaching and Church law.

            I’m not defending anyone in this except to say that it probably appeared differently then. And so we need the text and the other details I have asked for, to understand.

          • dannybhoy

            We are the Body of Christ. That means we are united by our love and service to our Lord Jesus. If a Christian loves the Lord and is active in His service, what does it matter which congregation or denomination he or she belongs to?

            I am not a Christian individualist. I am involved in the spiritual life of our village, I have been leading a small interdenominational home group for the last six years, The wife and I have been attending our parish church for the last six years.
            I did five years in YWAM and six years in Israel.
            My greatest desire is to serve my Lord and Saviour in whatever capacity He sees fit.

          • Albert

            We are the Body of Christ. That means we are united by our love and service to our Lord Jesus. If a Christian loves the Lord and is active in His service, what does it matter which congregation or denomination he or she belongs to?

            Because the Church is the visible body of Christ, stemming back through time and united across ages. A bunch of people claiming faithfully to interpret scripture, cannot by that claim alone, be the Church.

            Unless they were teaching heresies or perversions of the Gospel, or placing tradition higher than Biblical teaching..

            Protestants tend to assume it is obvious that their doctrines are those of scripture. I really don’t think they are and I marvel at the knots they tie themselves up in to deal with passages which are in conflict with their doctrines.

            I have no doubt of the sincerity of your faith and your love of the Lord, but I think that what Christ has promised of his Church is more than you can have in your present state. To put it another way, I believe nothing less about your churches than you do. I just believe that Christ has given us more.

          • dannybhoy

            Because the Church is the visible body of Christ, stemming back through time and united across ages. A bunch of people claiming faithfully to interpret scripture, cannot by that claim alone, be the Church.

            I was hoping to avoid this!
            By “the Church” you mean of course the Roman Catholic Church..
            Our Lord would wholeheartedly endorse the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church?
            God the Father is a patron, an honorary Catholic?
            Of course not!
            Neither is He an Anglican nor a Baptist or a Methodist.

            Protestants tend to assume it is obvious that their doctrines are those of scripture. I really don’t think they are and I marvel at the knots they tie themselves up in to deal with passages which are in conflict with their doctrines.
            I am not aware that I tie myself up in knots over doctrine! I only seek a theology in harmony with first, the overall tenor of Scripture, what Scripture reveals about the nature and attributes of God, and what is intellectually reasonable. I don’t include Church traditions of any sort in that mix.
            But I have absolutely no problem with another brother in Christ who is persuaded differently, because when our time on earth is up it is to our Lord that we each one shall answer. Our role is surely to encourage one another in the faith, in our love and devotion to God?

          • Albert

            By “the Church” you mean of course the Roman Catholic Church..
            Our Lord would wholeheartedly endorse the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church?

            Our Lord would not simply endorse Catholic teachings, they are his teachings.

            God the Father is a patron, an honorary Catholic?
            Of course not!

            Quite, that would be absurd. God the Son is the head of his body (hence its visibility and indivisibility) , and so he is not a patron or an honorary Catholic. Is your head the patron of your body, or is your head an honorary member of yours? You see here the danger of misrepresenting what others believe in order to score points. Express the teaching as we would and it makes perfect sense: Christ is the head of the body, hence the body cannot be divided, but must be visible.

            Neither is He an Anglican nor a Baptist or a Methodist.

            We agree on that!

            I am not aware that I tie myself up in knots over doctrine!

            Take sola fide. It is inconsistent, sometimes explicitly so, with virtually every page of the NT, but Protestants just explain passages away and make them mean something entirely different from what they explicitly say.

            I don’t include Church traditions of any sort in that mix.

            The separation of scripture and tradition just doesn’t function in reality. Scripture is a product of tradition, our doctrines of the Trinity and incarnation are themselves fruits of tradition. Sola fide is not found is scripture but comes from human tradition, and is opposed to scripture, even though most Protestants think it is there.

            But I have absolutely no problem with another brother in Christ who is persuaded differently, because when our time on earth is up it is to our Lord that we each one shall answer. Our role is surely to encourage one another in the faith, in our love of God.

            I agree, but there is a value in defending what we believe and perhaps in correcting the errors of others.

          • dannybhoy

            You see here the danger of misrepresenting what others believe in order to score points.
            I do not wish to score points nor misrepresent. I am happy to be corrected by you on Catholic doctrine.
            Jack does.
            Frequently!
            Goodnight brother Albert.

          • Albert

            Goodnight brother Danny, and as our Jewish friends would say, “Good Sabbath.”

          • dannybhoy

            Amen. btw I amended/added to my last comment…

          • Albert

            No, you take it..

            No thank you.

            By their fruits shall ye know them.. Ultimately we get to heaven by God’s grace at work within us. A working together of the saved soul with the Holy Spirit resulting in the ongoing process of sanctification and the bearing of fruit.

            There’s no problem for a Catholic in that idea. It’s the sola fide stuff, simul iustus et peccator etc. that is the problem.

          • dannybhoy

            “”It’s the sola fide stuff, simul iustus et peccator etc. that is the problem.”
            I don’t know what that means Albert.
            Latin never figured in my Christian or pre Christian existence…

          • Albert

            These are Luther’s terms and they are the ways in which the Protestant doctrine of justification differs from the Bible/Catholicism. Sola fide, just means “faith alone”. It never appears in the Bible, indeed, to make it appear that it did, Luther added “alone” to his translation of Romans 3.28:

            for we reckon a man to be justified by faith alone without deeds of law

            The word “alone” does not appear in the Greek there. In fact, the idea of justification by faith alone never appears in the NT except for where the Bible says it is not true:

            Do you want to be shown, you shallow man, that faith apart from works is barren? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by works, and the scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness”; and he was called the friend of God. You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. James 2

            Simul iustus et peccator, just means the Christian is at the same time righteous and a sinner – this is a corollary of the doctrine of sola fide. It is contrary to scripture because in the Bible to be righteous means not to be a sinner (obviously, when you think about it).

            Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
            nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
            for the LORD knows the way of the righteous,
            but the way of the wicked will perish.
            Psalm 1

            Do not yield your members to sin as instruments of wickedness, but yield yourselves to God as men who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments of righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Do you not know that if you yield yourselves to any one as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?
            But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.
            Romans 6

            And by this we may be sure that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He who says “I know him” but disobeys his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps his word, in him truly love for God is perfected. By this we may be sure that we are in him: he who says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. 1 John 2.

          • dannybhoy

            Thanks for that.
            I think the Scripture shows that salvation – the new birth, is a gift from God.
            From Death to Life.. Ephesians 2New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition
            2 You were dead through the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. 3 All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else. 4 But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us 5 even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ[a]—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness towards us in Christ Jesus.

            Then we go to Romans 10..
            8… But what does it say?

            ‘The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim);
            9 because[b] if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. 11 The scripture says, ‘No one who believes in him will be put to shame.’ 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call on him. 13 For, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

            New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition
            Finally our Lord said that “By their fruits shall ye know them” and

            John 15:4-5New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)

            4 “Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.”

            So faith is dynamic, not passive. True faith results in a fundamental change of heart, with the fruits of the Spirit beginning to bud and form in the believer’s life.
            So then St. James concludes, -rightly imo ;0)

            James 2:14-26New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)
            Faith without Works Is Dead
            14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters,[a] if you say you have faith but do not have works? Can faith save you? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill’, and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? 17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.

          • Albert

            I think the Scripture shows that salvation – the new birth, is a gift from God.

            Of course it is. But there’s nothing in scripture to say it is sola fide or simul iustus et peccator. When God crowns our merits it’s his own merits he is crowning.

          • dannybhoy

            Well then, we find ourselves in agreement, yet you say Protestants tie -what was it?
            Oh yes.
            ” I really don’t think they are and I marvel at the knots they tie themselves up in to deal with passages which are in conflict with their doctrines.”
            I am from a non Conformist background, and I have never heard anyone say different to what you and I are now saying -in sweet unity- ;0)
            I think the doctrine is often clumsily expressed so that it sounds like faith alone.

          • Albert

            Well I’m delighted we agree (if we do). Because when I say the things I have said to you to Anton and Martin, they rage against it! They tie themselves in knots trying to explain away teaching which clearly says the righteous man is genuinely righteous, not just declared to be so, and that work are therefore part of righteousness.

          • dannybhoy

            Sigh..
            I would hesitate to disagree with Anton! Perhaps he might add his thoughts?
            Saving faith results in the fruit of the Spirit and deeds of righteousness.
            Bearing in mind what St Paul says in 1st Corinthians 3: 10-15
            And our Lord’s warning in Matthew 7..
            “17 In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus you will know them by their fruits.

            Concerning Self-Deception
            21 ‘Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord”, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?” 23 Then I will declare to them, “I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.”

          • Albert

            These are all the kinds of passages I would use to defend Catholicism.

          • dannybhoy

            These are the kinds of passages I would use to defend true Christian living… ;0)
            ~~~
            In our home group (all ladies) we are looking afresh at the Church, at (ahem!) which denomination enjoys God’s favour most ;0)
            The place of tradition in our denominations, the mission of the Church and the fruits and gifts of the Holy Spirit. Starting in 1st Corinthians and ranging through the pastoral letters of Paul, Peter, John and James
            ‘We’ are a mixture of Anglicans, Methodists led by Danny with his non-allegiance to any denomination..
            I found this article very useful in starting a discussion on what the Church is…
            https://www.thoughtco.com/what-is-the-church-700486

          • Albert

            In our home group (all ladies) we are looking afresh at the Church, at (ahem!) which denomination enjoys God’s favour most

            According to the Bible, the Church is the body and bride of Christ, and has Christ as its head. It is the pillar and bulwark of the truth, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

            The individual however can be described thus:

            So also our beloved brother Paul wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, speaking of this as he does in all his letters. There are some things in them hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures.

            How come then, you get to judge the Church?

            I note with interest the claim in the link:

            Although many believe Jesus noted the meaning of Peter’s name here as rock, there was no supremacy given to him by Christ. Rather, Jesus was referring to Peter’s declaration: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” This confession of faith is the rock upon which the church is built, and just like Peter, everyone who confesses Jesus Christ as Lord is a part of the church.

            This is the kind of thing I mean by tying themselves in knots. Peter and Rock are the same word and then Jesus goes on to give Peter specific authority:

            I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

            And this authority has resonances with the OT:

            And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will call my servant Eliacim, the son of Helcias. And I will clothe him with thy robe, and will strengthen him with thy girdle, and will give thy power into his hand: and he shall be as a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Juda. And I will lay the key of the house of David upon his shoulder: and he shall open, and none shall shut: and he shall shut, and none shall open. And I will fasten him as a peg in a sure place: and he shall be for a throne of glory to the house of his father. And they shall hang upon him all the glory of his father’s house, diverse kinds of vessels, every little vessel: from the vessels of cups even to every instrument of music. Isaiah 22

            How then can this Protestant interpretation be correct?

          • dannybhoy

            “I note with interest the claim in the link:

            Although many believe Jesus noted the meaning of Peter’s name here as rock, there was no supremacy given to him by Christ. Rather, Jesus was referring to Peter’s declaration: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” This confession of faith is the rock upon which the church is built, and just like Peter, everyone who confesses Jesus Christ as Lord is a part of the church.

            This is the kind of thing I mean by tying themselves in knots. Peter and Rock are the same word and then Jesus goes on to give Peter specific authority:”

            I am sad that you picked up on the very part that I had thought to omit!
            I won’t get into it Albert, because personally I don’t think it matters.
            Unless you are saying that one can only have true salvation through the Roman Catholic Church?
            The New Testament is full of examples of what it means to be a Christian. You and I have referred to the same passages.
            The more I think about what the Church is as the Body of Christ, the Bride of Christ’ the more I struggle with the rigidity of denominationalism. I can and do respect the different emphases, but to me they are all aspects of the same great Truths.
            I think the thing I struggle with most! is church tradition; because actually it is the veneration of traditions and rituals that can obscure true Christianity.
            For what it is worth and with great respect for you as a Christian brother in Christ, I would say enjoy your Catholic allegiance, enjoy the richness of the rituals and certainly the depth of learning and reflection.
            As long as your heart is full of love for your Saviour and you have the certainty that as you continue in your pilgrimage it is He who will bring you safely to Heaven.
            That is all that really matters.

          • dannybhoy

            Okay, I’ll add a little more in regards to your >
            “This is the kind of thing I mean by tying themselves in knots. Peter and Rock are the same word and then Jesus goes on to give Peter specific authority:
            I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
            And this authority has resonances with the OT:”

            I don’t dispute what is written, I would only observe that throughout the Acts of the Apostles, through Paul’s letters, Jame’s letter and John’s letters there is a recognition of Peter’s leadership role (who could not love Peter?) in the community of believers.
            Along with James and John. Even Peter himself says nothing in his letters about a special authority or eminence.. (1st Peter 2:4-9 chapter 5:1-4 II Peter 3:1-2 whilst recognising Paul’s ministry 3:14-16)

          • Albert

            Even Peter himself says nothing in his letters about a special authority or eminence..

            He doesn’t need to, it’s not being disputed.

          • dannybhoy

            There then. You’ve settled it in your own mind!
            We need discuss it no further.

          • Albert

            Again, I’m not sure how scriptural that response is. Paul does not say to his opponents You’ve settled it in your own mind! We need discuss it no further.

          • dannybhoy

            That is the response of a man who has (for him) thought a lot about the claims of the Roman Catholic Church, of its belief in St. Peter’s pre-eminent role amongst the Apostles, and the idea of Papal succession, the celibacy of the priesthood, the role of Mary etc., and remains unconvinced.
            That doesn’t mean I don’t respect Catholics or Catholicism. I just look for the places
            and doctrines we can agree upon and work together on and leave it at that.
            We all will give an account of ourselves on that day, and as long as my mind is clear on what I believed and my conscience is also clear, I am content.

          • Albert

            Unless you are saying that one can only have true salvation through the Roman Catholic Church?

            No. This is a complicated one. There is no salvation outside the Church, however, one who as a result of invincible ignorance does not realise the need to enter the Church is not thereby condemned.

            The more I think about what the Church is as the Body of Christ, the Bride of Christ’ the more I struggle with the rigidity of denominationalism.

            Denomination is not a good word. It implies that there is some kind of wider currency (church) and that different communities are just different denominations of that. But Catholicism denies that, precisely because it believes the Church is the bride and body of Christ and must be founded by Christ himself. It is also necessary to receive the faith from the Church, not to judge the Church by (what one interprets as) the faith, for the danger of misinterpreting the faith is all too real.

            I can and do respect the different emphases, but to me they are all aspects of the same great Truths.

            I think you soft-pedal the importance of the Church as itself sacramental.

            I think the thing I struggle with most! is church tradition; because actually it is the veneration of traditions and rituals that can obscure true Christianity.

            The word tradition is a problematic word. Scripture is a fruit of tradition and Paul commends the Corinthians because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you. The Creed is a fruit of tradition. How you interpret the Bible comes from tradition. Now is that all on the same level as say the ritual of beginning a service with a worship song? I don’t think it is.

            As long as your heart is full of love for your Saviour and you have the certainty that as you continue in your pilgrimage it is He who will bring you safely to Heaven.
            That is all that really matters.

            Interesting. If that is all that matters, why is the NT so full of controversy? Why doesn’t St Paul just say that to resolve problems?

            BTW, Catholicism doesn’t believe it is possible to know in this world with certainty that we are going to heaven, hence, I am not at all sure about the last sentence quoted!

          • dannybhoy

            “Interesting. If that is all that matters, why is the NT so full of controversy? Why doesn’t St Paul just say that to resolve problems?”
            I’m talking about you in your own walk of faith.
            And St. Paul did – quite clearly..
            1 Corinthians 13.
            As of course did our Lord..
            John 13: 31-35
            We can seek for greater understanding, discuss different (sometimes difficult) passages of Scripture without falling out with one another if we have love.

          • Albert

            Okay, so what is the Letter to the Galatians about, or the theology of the Letter to the Romans?

            We can seek for greater understanding, discuss different (sometimes difficult) passages of Scripture without falling out with one another if we have love.

            I agree, but we cannot just say “Love one another and nothing else matters.” That’s my point: that is clearly not the teahcing of the NT.

          • Anton

            Why then do we still undergo bodily death?

          • Albert

            Can you expand on that, please? It’s a little minimalist at the moment.

          • Anton

            Let me put it another way. If we (ie, committed Christians) really are righteous, why do we still find ourselves sinning in this life? And why do you think purgatory is necessary?

          • Albert

            Righteousness is not a binary once and for all concept in the NT. The person who converts is righteoused by faith, but that does not stop him sinning. If he sins, he ceases to be righteous and must be restored by God’s grace. This is exactly the pattern we find in the NT:

            Now the works of the flesh are plain: fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party spirit, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

            And

            but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. My little children, I am writing this to you so that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and he is the expiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. And by this we may be sure that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He who says “I know him” but disobeys his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps his word, in him truly love for God is perfected. By this we may be sure that we are in him:
            he who says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.

            Does that also answer the question of purgatory?

          • Anton

            Everything Paul says of the flesh is true of the “old man”, who we were. It is still there, but it is not us – that is why I say we are given a new identity, a new self, at our conversion. This is symbolised in baptism – death of the old self and birth of a new. Symbolism must be symbolism OF something, of course (a fact too often forgotten when somebody says something is “symbolic”), and this is what.

            The old self includes the brain and all of the neurons in it whose interrelations govern our addictions – that is why I think you are being simplistic to complain that I am separating spiritual and material. When we are resurrected it is not as pure spirit – we are given new bodies, like Jesus was.

          • dannybhoy

            Thanks for contributing Anton.

          • Albert

            Everything Paul says of the flesh is true of the “old man”, who we were. It is still there, but it is not us – that is why I say we are given a new identity, a new self, at our conversion.

            I think we need some clarity on terms like “it is not us”. Do you mean that Anton who was born to his parents has ceased to exist, was annihilated and will not inherit the kingdom of God?

            The old self includes the brain and all of the neurons in it whose interrelations govern our addictions

            Has the matter of the brain of the old self ceased to exist and been replaced by new matter/new neurons etc.?

          • Anton

            These questions were all answered in my original post which stimulated the subthread. The original Anton is now relegated to “the flesh” and will die.

          • Albert

            So he is not redeemed or saved?

          • Anton

            He was redeemed and saved by being transformed into the new Anton.

          • Albert

            So he does still exist then, it’s just that he’s been purified?

      • Cressida de Nova

        Come on, dive in, the Tiber is warm and not as wide as you
        think….Goodness Albert, do I detect a touch of the latin about you or is it just the hot weather? You see what happens when you become Catholic:)

        • Albert

          Though I have swum the Tiber, I have never actually swum in the Tiber. There’s not much Latin about me, to be honest, except my love of Latin Catholicism.

          • Cressida de Nova

            Joke, Albert 🙂

          • Albert

            I know, but couldn’t think of anything witty to say in response.

        • Anna

          “Come on, dive in, the Tiber is warm and not as wide as you think…”

          Too full of crocodiles though.

      • What possible point would there be in exchanging one type of heresy for another?
        Praise God one is not forced to choose between these two evils; there are still Bible-believing congregations to which the fleeing Anglican can turn– and the fleeing Romanist come to that. We have more recovering Roman Catholics in our congregation than recovering Anglicans.

        • Albert

          What possible point would there be in exchanging one type of heresy for another?

          Which is precisely why an Anglican fleeing the present problems will find a safe harbour in Rome rather than in the modern doctrines of the fundamentalists. As I have said already, all Protestants are liberals really, it’s just that some of you are conservative liberals.

  • Father David

    Come, come, dear lady, there are still some traditionalist Anglican clergy left, of which I consider myself one – Traditionalist in religion but Left-leaning in politics – in fact, the same hue as Mr. Corbyn’s long-Johns.
    Alas, Barchester is not my diocese nor Bishop Proudie my Father in God. I’m one with the Archdeacon in regretting the dropping of clerical vesture although I find it hard to imagine him wearing a fiddle-back chasuble.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Ah, a Left-leaner…but with the gentle application of the right buttress one may at least get you into the perpendicular where sanity reigns…

  • Inspector General

    Good day to you, Mrs Proudie

    One has found this on the Guardian site. Having done their bit over the decades to turn our society upside down, instilling a something-for-nothing attitude, unlimited self entitlement at no cost, and encouraging economically inactive third world immigration, they now expect their product to put its hand in its pocket to keep its degenerative hide solvent…

    “Since you’re here …
    … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading the Guardian than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe our perspective matters – because it might well be your perspective, too.”

    • Pubcrawler

      They can go whistle.

    • Chefofsinners

      One wonders what exactly the Guardian thinks it is guarding?

      • jsampson45

        I have always assumed that it sees itself as the paper for Plato’s guardians or equivalent.

      • Inspector General

        Surely not the heritage of the October Revolution…

        Anyway, it’s gratifying to see they are reduced to begging. It’s difficult to envisage where the next generation of Guardian reader is coming from. Forty years ago, many of ones young contemporaries dallied with that daily, and one or two still buy it. Yet things are so much tougher now for the young. Universities for those that wanted it didn’t charge, and maintenance grants were plenty and exactly that. Grants, not loans. Rents were much cheaper in real terms too. Today, the young are now scolded by the thing for being white, middle class, heterosexual and not disabled by the contributors employed. Dripping in privilege apparently and so with nothing to whine about. What other publication freely cuts the throat of its readership on so regular a basis…

  • David

    Greetings Mrs Proudie !
    I too am within the Mogg school for the future leadership of the Conservative
    Party. That man can think deeply, express himself clearly and command respect from all but the most bigoted inverted snobs. Moreover he’s a committed traditionalist Christian – splendid !
    Oh yes that hateful rag the Guardian is displaying deep animosity against the indigenous British again isn’t it ? What a vile, twisted publication it is.

    • A committed orthodox Roman Catholic as future Prime Minister?
      Floccinaucinihilipilification.

      • Cressida de Nova

        You too:)

        • Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis :0)

          • Pubcrawler

            That’s easy for you to say.

            λοπαδο­τεμαχο­σελαχο­γαλεο­κρανιο­λειψανο­δριμ­υπο­τριμματο­σιλφιο­καραβο­μελιτο­κατακεχυ­μενο­κιχλ­επι­κοσσυφο­φαττο­περιστερ­αλεκτρυον­οπτο­κεφαλλιο­κιγκλο­πελειο­λαγῳο­σιραιο­βαφη­τραγανο­πτερύγων

          • Cressida de Nova

            I would appreciate it if you could practise a little more restraint. Jack would be very embarrassed if he understood what you said.

          • निरन्तरान्धकारित-दिगन्तर-कन्दलदमन्द-सुधारस-बिन्दु-सान्द्रतर-घनाघन-वृन्द-सन्देहकर-स्यन्दमान-मकरन्द-बिन्दु-बन्धुरतर-माकन्द-तरु-कुल-तल्प-कल्प-मृदुल-सिकता-जाल-जटिल-मूल-तल-मरुवक-मिलदलघु-लघु-लय-कलित-रमणीय-पानीय-शालिका-बालिका-करार-विन्द-गलन्तिका-गलदेला-लवङ्ग-पाटल-घनसार-कस्तूरिकातिसौरभ-मेदुर-लघुतर-मधुर-शीतलतर-सलिलधारा-निराकरिष्णु-तदीय-विमल-विलोचन-मयूख-रेखापसारित-पिपासायास-पथिक-लोकान्

          • Tweedehandsemotorverkoopsmannevakbondstakingsvergaderingsameroeperstoespraakskrywerspersverklaringuitreikingsmediakonferensieaankondiging

          • Cressida de Nova

            No….I don’t think so !

          • David

            Now you are exaggerating !

      • David

        Stay calm now, there’s a good Jack.

    • Anton

      I love the Mogg young-fogey image, and I agree with his views and believe that he believes what he says. But I don’t feel I know who he is really; the image is too dominant.

      • Cressida de Nova

        Vietato Lamentarsi ! 🙂

        • Chefofsinners

          Asti Spumanti for me, please.

    • Chefofsinners

      Mr Re-Smogg is in favour of repealing the clean air act.

  • Father David

    ABM (Anybody [except Boris] But Mogg. Look at the mess the last Old Etonian got us into and left us with. That Bounder Cameron gave in to the Right-wingers and called a Referendum which, to the deep regret of an increasing number of people, went the wrong way. What a disaster.

    • Albert

      Seriously? So because Cameron was bad, therefore all Old Etonians are bad? Really?

      • Terry Mushroom

        In the days when the Jesuits had a school at nearby Beaumont, the story goes that Beaumont challenged Eton to a cricket match. Back came the hoity response, “What is Beaumont?”

        Which got the naughty reply, “Beaumont is, what Eton was, a school for Catholic gentlemen.”

        I once went to a Sunday morning drinkies-do given by a master at another public school. One of the few who didn’t have a close school connection, a fellow guest asked me a little too quickly, what school I’d gone to. I honestly answered, “Slough Grammar School.”

        My delighted host, who didn’t like her much, later explained that I’d given her a problem about socially placing me. Was I being modest and self effacing? Or working class, but bright?

        • Anton

          GK Chesterton came out with a cracker about St Paul’s School: “It’s not for the sons of gentlemen; it’s for the fathers of gentlemen.”

          • Terry Mushroom

            I wonder who the GKC equivalent is today? He went to Mass in the parish I later belonged to. The very oldies remembered him with affection and as a man not too grand to help move the chairs.

            I like Rees-Mogg. It’s interesting that Mhaire Black, young, lesbian, SNP MP, speaks warmly about him. She recently supported him chairing a Select Committee.

          • donadrian

            Rather like the old headmaster of a school I used to teach in: “Not many of our boys go to Oxford or Cambridge – but they employ a lot that do.”

        • dannybhoy

          Be yourself. It’s always best in the long run.

          • Terry Mushroom

            Absolutely. I can’t be anyone else but what God made me to be.

          • dannybhoy

            Ooops!
            You’re talking to someone who believes he is the result of his parents’ union in the marriage bed. Made in the image of God yes, otherwise 100% Geordie.
            God did not make you gay, anymore than He especially made me heterosexual. It is a biological process created by God to ensure the continuity of mankind..

          • Terry Mushroom

            I was writing about public & grammar schools and class divides. Not sure why you think I was discussing sexuality. Not relevant to what I was asking but I’m not gay or pinning any blame on God for anything!

          • dannybhoy

            Hm, don’t know why I did that.
            My bad.
            Sorry.

  • Mr. Rees-Mogg, a true Conservative

    Conservatism is defined as ‘Commitment to traditional values and ideas with opposition to change or innovation’ and ‘The holding of political views that favour free enterprise, private ownership, and socially conservative ideas’. By both measures, the modern Conservative Party, with its policy of replacing Christianity with Islam, fails the test of conservatism and no true Conservative or true Christian would have any time for it.

    The Archbishop of Strasbourg said recently, quoting Renaud Camus’ concept of the Great Replacement: Les croyants musulmans le savent très bien que leur fécondité est telle qu’aujourd’hui, comment ils appellent ça?… le Grand Remplacement, ils vous le disent de façon très calme, très positive, ‘mais de toute façon, un jour tout ça, ça sera à nous.’ / Muslim believers know very well that their present birth rate is such that—what do they call it?—the Great Replacement, they say to you very calmly but very explicitly, ‘but anyway, one day, all of that will be ours.’

    ‘All of that will be ours’: the future that Rees-Mogg is helping to prepare for his children.

    • dannybhoy

      http://www.dhimmitude.org/archive/bat_yeor_eurabia_summary_2004dec.pdf
      If European countries/the EU have indeed done a deal with some forms of Islam that would explain a great deal.

    • Coniston

      Muslims don’t even have to be in a majority. We are forgetting our culture, history and traditions – they are disparaged in most schools, and most students know little about them. Our history and culture are ‘racist’ according to the liberal elite. Inevitably we will lose our identity, there will be nothing for any immigrants to integrate into, so most people will integrate into the dominant immigration community.

      • Dominic Stockford

        20% is normally all they need to over-run things.

        • Anton

          India and Israel are the countries we need to learn from – and fast.

        • Pubcrawler

          Just one vehicle is all they need to run over people.

  • bluedog

    Splendid, Mrs P, splendid, and what a laugh! After the grim reports of Synod and its descent into leftist self-parody, your lead in promoting Jacob Rees-Mogg as the great white hope is both reassuring and well-judged. May his muscular fecundity be an example to all young couples struggling to make ends meet. Comparisons with Mrs May are rather unfair, but with the Rees-Moggs in Number Ten, the country would brim with vitality and renewal. Floreat Jacob!

  • Father David

    Albert – Sir Alec was a gentleman, I’ve always liked MacMillan, Sir Anthony was a disaster with regard to Suez and Gladstone was considerable.

  • IrishNeanderthal

    Personally, I think it is a good thing to replenish royal blood with an infusion of outsider from time to time, but too much of it makes the royals just like the rest of us.

    When Prince Harry was 12 or 13, as I remember, he paid a visit to Swaziland. The King of Swaziland, noted for his numerous wives, arranged a display dance of what I presume were some of his even more numerous daughters.

    I thought, at the time, that there was a way or replenishing the royal blood with an infusion of outsider without diluting the royalty.

  • Chefofsinners

    Those who leap from heresy to heresy are bounders indeed. Let us hold fast to the scripture which says “where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.” Though they are afflicted with leaprosy and are unclean (not to mention unwashed), let us pray that they mind the gap between their earthly platform and that heavenly train which is bound for glory.
    Meanwhile, in the lower realms, Mr Khan has banned travellers on the underground from being addressed as ‘Ladies and Gentlemen’. This is apparently in deference to those who have caught their bits in the sliding doors, becoming what is known as trains-gender. Warning signs for the promiscuous will now be introduced at all stations saying ‘Mind the clap’.
    One wonders when the lawns of Wimbledon will succumb to transtyranny and we see an unseeded ballgirl knocking up on the on the hallowed sod.

    • dannybhoy

      Very good that. The-wife-says-it-made-her-laugh..

  • DP111

    “Bergoglio just wants to do politics, the Gospel does not matter at all”
    Pera: “The indiscriminate welcoming [of migrants] risks exploding tensions”

    https://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2017/07/the-ultimate-interview-to-understand.html#more

    Same can be said for the CoE.

  • Manfarang

    Clearly the China Daily doesn’t reach Barchester. The one child policy was going strong for many years.

  • Gen d’Eau

    (wrong blog – sorry)

    • bluedog

      No, not all. Read the article and the authors would be welcomed at the next General Synod of the CoE. Thanks for the link, reproduced below.

      http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/jul/13/feminist-geographers-dont-cite-research-white-men/

      • Gen d’Eau

        Fair enough. I was a little careless with where I cut and pasted (mea culpa). No harm intended, or it seems, inflicted.

        Have a nice day, you’re doing good work here.

        The American term for this process of corruption is Churchianity, I believe. ‘Religion’ as a badge of social virtue , devoid of any actual religious belief. Dalrock’s blog is a centre of discussion for this.
        http://dalrock.wordpress.com/
        A solid guy, his commentariate varies (I look in from time to time)

        • dannybhoy

          Churchianity is a good word for it.
          Usually though we think of it as putting church buildings and ritual before worship and discipleship.Social virtue and church going do not go together here in the UK.