Church of England

Church of England schism: a timely new reformation or tit-for-tat boundary pushing?

On 31st October 1517, an obscure Catholic monk called Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of All Saints’, the Castle Church in Wittenberg, protesting at the sale of indulgences and other abuses – an event taken as marking the beginning of the Protestant Reformation. On 2nd May 2017, an obscure Anglican curate called Jonathan Pryke was consecrated bishop under the aegis of Jesmond Parish Church in Newcastle, by the extra-juridicial authority of the Presiding Bishop of the Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of South Africa (formerly known as the Church of England in South Africa), protesting at the wishy-washy approach to issues of sex, gender, sexuality and marriage  – an event taken as marking the beginning of the Great Anglican Schism in England.

Whether this is indeed the beginning of “a new timely reformation” or just an embarrassing ecclesial damp squib remains to be seen. It is worth surveying some useful background analysis (see Ian Paul here and Peter Carrell here), but it seems to this Anglican mind that a rebellious schismatic consecration in the Church of England which isn’t even contiguous with the rebellious schismatic movement in the Church of England is doomed to failure. It isn’t so much that Jonathan Pryke didn’t have the courtesy to inform the Bishop of Newcastle or the Archbishop of York of his intentions; he didn’t even inform GAFCON UK or the Anglican Mission in England (AMiEon whose executive he sits). If a schism be schismatic against itself, that schism cannot stand. However…

And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought:
But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God (Acts 5:38f)

Jonathan Pryke has been consecrated “bishop in the Church of God” contrary to the laws of the Church of England. Ian Paul believes should be met with a robust response: “..anything less than a serious move, such as removing Jonathan Pryke’s license (sic), could be seen as an institutional failure.” But if this were done under the Clergy Disciplinary Measure, Jesmond Parish Church has threatened “reciprocal heresy trials”, which sound like a jolly good idea. If, indeed, unilateral episcopal consecration constitutes “conduct unbecoming or inappropriate to the office and work of a clerk in Holy Orders”, what about those clergy who have refused to obey church teaching on matters of sexual morality (homo and hetero), not to mention those who either repudiate completely or push the boundaries of church teaching on marriage (exclusively hetero)?

The Church of England badly needs credible bishops and faithful clergy, so complementary heresy trials are obviously the way to go. At least the consequences in the 21st century will not be quite as severe as they were in the 16th.

  • Anton

    I look upon the ecclesiastical politics of all this with utter bewilderment, but I support my evangelical brethren within the Church of England.

    • Jon of GSG

      Me too! Feels like so much wasted energy.

  • Father David

    Go to it Christine Hardman (Bishop of Newcastle) shew exactly how hard you are and remove Pryke’s licence to minister within your diocese.

    • Anton

      Make my day…

    • Inspector General

      Yes, that man. A mainstay line of many an American police drama of the 50s and 60s. “I want your badge. And your gun, bishop”

      • Anton

        You missed my comment below from Dirty Harry?

  • David

    Hhmm, very puzzling ?
    I thought that the idea from Gafcon and the AMiE was to create bishops under their umbrella. So I find it baffling that this was done, apart from, as it were both Gafcon and AMiE. Moreover it would only have been courteous to have notified both the bishop of Newcastle and the Archbishop of York.
    So yes I am very puzzled.
    But administrative matters aside, if this man preaches the gospel of Jesus Christ bringing souls to Christ, then I wish him well in that ministry.

  • Maalaistollo

    Of course, if you remove all the hierarchy above parish level, there isn’t a problem.

    • Little Black Censored

      Hmm, I shall need to think about that.

    • Albert

      or a Church…

      • Anton

        Certainly there is. Local congregations and a universal church having a decentralised structure.

        • Albert

          That’s not a Church.

          • Anton

            The universal church is by definition the collective of Christ’s faithful.

          • Albert

            …and his intention.

  • Father David

    David – Courtesy and Jesmond (JPC – aping HTB) are not words that I associate one with another. David Holloway has been a thorn in the flesh of the diocese of Newcastle and indeed the entire Church of England for many a long decade. He is now obviously an old man in a hurry.

    • Anton

      This man?

      http://trushare.com/36MAY98/MY98HOLL.HTM

      “we capped our contribution to the diocese when the diocese supported a neighbouring parish which was blessing homosexual unions and simultaneously doubled our quota to pay for the privilege of that support.”

      “Holloway has also been constantly involved in education and this work has climaxed in the foundation of the Christian Institute to keep Christians informed and help them deal with social and public affairs.”

  • Sybaseguru

    Maybe they should have made David Holloway a Bishop when they had a chance. That always seems to be the best way of suppressing revolt. A year as bishop is enough to tame any firebrand as it allows the liberal cohort to mount a continuous attack without the support of his parish.

  • Andrew Price

    “reciprocal heresy trials” in the C of E where do you begin?

    • Andrew Price

      Sorry there should be a capital letter there somewhere….

    • Anton

      Well quite, but it is the sort of muscular language and (frankly) counter-threat that some of us are glad to see at long last.

  • chefofsinners

    Liberal Anglicans are a parasite which has infected the entire body of the CoE and is currently liquefying every internal organ. Once every nutrient is extracted and the carcass has been thoroughly picked over, it will rot in the street. Articles such as this are merely providing palliative care.
    Thus will end the Reformation. And yet, the seeds of this great tree have been blown over all the world. Seedlings have become great forests, the sap of truth rises and the knowledge of the glory of God fills the earth.
    Here’s an idea. Maybe the CoE should stop referring to schisms and start calling them ‘Fresh Expressions.’ You can have that one for free.
    Where’s Mrs Proudie? I want to ordain her bishop. No hands to be laid on delicate places, obvs.

    • carl jacobs

      Liberal Anglicans are a parasite

      Now, is that really helpful? That’s just the kind of language that got us in trouble with Mark Hewerdine. You should have said “Liberal Anglicans represent a legitimate expression of Christianity that expresses God’s desire to be in relationship with all people everywhere regardless of how those people might conceive of God – or even conceive of God at all.” Do you see how simple it is?

      You need to give up your fear of emasculation, surrender your privilege, and leave the cesspool of hate that you currently inhabit.

      • chefofsinners

        Some fears are legitimate and well founded. The fear of emasculation being one of them. And the fear of liberal Anglicans being another, only more so.

        • carl jacobs

          I see the Sensitivity Training isn’t going well.

          • chefofsinners

            Never had any complaints before in that department. Not that it concerns you.

      • Good disagreement and mutual flourishing.

      • chefofsinners

        Mark Whoerdene?

        • carl jacobs

          He was the very wise and sagacious individual who called down lightening from heaven onto Cranmer’s weblog yesterday on Twitter. We all have something to learn from his enlightened and progressive discernment,

  • Father David

    Mrs. Proudie would make a first rate Bishop of Newcastle – let us hope that the actual Bishop of Newcastle is made of the same steel as the Bishop of Barchester’s wife. Shew us your mettle Christine!
    Glorious thought to think of schisms rent asunder and “Reciprocal Heresy Trials” as “Fresh Expressions”
    I simply don’t know! Justin goes off for a 12 day jolly to the Holy Land and all hell breaks lose within the Church of England in his absence. When the cat’s away …..

  • len

    Jesus is far too radical and not PC enough for the liberal wing of the Cof E ,if He would only ‘tone it down a bit’ it would make Christianity a far nicer, more socially acceptable religion.

    What are the choices for those wanting to follow the authentic Gospel of Jesus Christ within the Cof E?. There seems to be no option other other than jump into the Tiber(not recomended ) or leave and find a church which’ does God’ ,full version?.
    Either way the Cof E is hastening its own demise.

  • len

    Wait a minute, did the disciples all have the proper licences to preach the Gospel?.Who’s authority were they under?.

    • Anton

      Acts 5:29

  • carl jacobs

    Whether this succeeds is not nearly as important as that it happened at all. This is but an indicator that reveals the stresses building up inside the CoE. These stresses are caused by the doctrinal trajectory of the CoE and they will not be relieved by the appointment of the odd token Conservative bishop. As the CoE conforms itself more and more to the image of TEC, the stress grows greater. Pieces will start to break and fly off even as the hull is still able to resist the force. That is what this event represents.

    As the CoE becomes more and more corrupt, conservatives will find their own ways out. Some will leave sooner. Some will leave later. Some will go to free churches. Some will go to alternate Anglican churches. Others will stay and complain about those who “deserted” in the fight to save the CoE. Eventually even these “stayers” will be forced out through attrition. There is nothing clean or neat about this process. All that is known is that in the end conservatives will have departed the CoE one way or another.

    • Anton

      I think you are more likely to be right than not, but all the manly rhetoric in the world cannot escape the fact that you can’t know. Evangelicals are capable of learning from the TEC fiasco.

      • carl jacobs

        When you stand on the deck of a mortally wounded ship, you will not be aided by a detailed knowledge of how the ship is sinking. That knowledge doesn’t give you the power to stop the slide to oblivion.

        The only thing that can save the CoE at this point is direct divine intervention. Prudence does not trust to miracles. There are available to men many divinely appointed options in the course or normal life and none will appear as miracles. Yet the prudent mind will discern them.

        • Anton

          You think the evangelicals can’t win. I think they can, although I suspect they won’t. So you tell them to get out, and I tell them to fight while warning them that (a) it will get nasty and they need to be ready for that, and (b) Christ can be known and loved in congregations outside the CoE.

    • chefofsinners

      Yes, the CoE is like the ice caps. Cracks appear, then chunks break off and float away. This is caused by a gradual temperature rise, the result of vast amounts of hot air produced by progressive clergy as they give vent to the fires of hell burning within.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      What is TEC?

      • Anton

        The Episcopal Church (in North America, or at least the USA).

      • carl jacobs

        What remains of the Anglican Communion in the United States. It began the Long March through orthodoxy about half a century ago and is for all intents and purposes conservative-free at this point.

        • The rot set in at the Lambeth Conference in 1930.

          • Anton

            Yawn.

    • And some will join the Catholic Church ….

  • Reformation without tarrying for any! Brownism lives!
    A stone has been cast into the fetid swamp that is the C of E as it exists today. How far will the ripples spread? Those who love the chaste virgin that is the true Church of God (2 Corinthians 11:2) need to be much in prayer.

    • chefofsinners

      I may have chased that virgin. Please pass on my apologies…

  • Royinsouthwest

    You don’t even need to use correct grammar when preaching, let alone have a licence (noun).

    • Andrew Price

      License, licence, incense I get so confused.

      • IanCad

        License, licence, nonsense. The Americans spell it their way, we spell it ours. Either way it’s understood.

        • Andrew Price

          I feel a schism coming on, if that’s how you spell it.

    • He may be an American. Oops. Already said.

  • Anton

    Declaring the liberals heretics is a smart move if the evangelicals are to assert that they themselves are the CoE and not the breakaway. It is how the Roman Catholic church got rid of its surfeit of Popes to end the schism of the 14th and 15th centuries.

  • Darter Noster

    I really hope the two sanctimonious beardy liberal academic senior Churchmen, who when marking my PhD thesis told me to go away and rewrite it because all my claims of a crisis in the Church of England that would lead to exactly this were biased conservative nonsense that could not be substantiated, are bloody well reading this.

    • Anton

      Williams and Wright, or couldn’t you possibly comment?

  • Martin

    I wonder how many in the CoE would be cleared by a heresy trial?

  • Colin

    I used to work in South Asia in a country that won the accolade from Transparency International as “The most corrupt country in the world” (until Haiti took from us!!!). The church wasn’t significantly different from the rest of society. All denomninations were riven witih corruption, nepotism, fraud, abuse, abuse of power, etc. etc. You name it, we saw it.

    I remember almost being in despair at the state of the church, and wanting to wash my hands of it. It was so easy just concentrate on new things that were happening. But I was reminded by a Godly colleague that Jesus was saying “Don’t look down on my bride. She’s not well, but she’s getting better. And I love her. Don’t walk away from her.” I would say that to our conservative evangelical colleagues now.

    • Christ’s bride is not the institutional church or indeed any denomination; it is the body of true believers everywhere. It is essentially spiritual not structural, organic not organisational, inspired not institutional.

      • Colin

        Indeed. Therefore the institutional should reflect the Spirit and heart of the body. Secretive power manoeuvres, challenges to trial of heresy, labelling of heretic, doing things without discussion. The institution is sick. But Christ loves his bride, including the institutional expressions, and calls them to reflect their true nature.
        This action doesn’t

  • Manfarang

    The Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of South Africa canons allow for lay presidency at Holy Communion and also the use of grape juice instead of fermented wine.

    • Anton

      OINOS means grape juice as much as it does wine so no problem with the scriptures there.

      • Manfarang

        No South African plonk then?

  • Inspector General

    Before any Anglicans jump ship, you need to consider carefully what you’re jumping into. Have a look at this. It will be like a coming home for many of you. No priestesses, no veneration of peculiar and unstable sexual practices or ways of living. Only as it ever was before.
    +++++++++++++++++++
    Anglican Independent Communion Worldwide
    https://www.churchtimes.co.uk/articles/2006/10-february/news/anglicans-back-new-church
    The AICW, which is not part of the Anglican Communion, declares itself as continuing to believe “everything the C of E accepted and taught before it was swamped by liberalism”.
    +++++++++++++++++++
    Your Inspector will not be joining you though. He will remain a taig as the RCs do discipline very well and don’t allow the lay people a say. Discipline is all. That’s what has ruined the CoE beyond repair. Too many ‘interested parties’ who have only their selfish desires at heart. The busy body Marxist-educated-in-the-so-called-humanities women whom are now unstoppable being the worst. Followed by peculiar men who crave acceptance, respect and control, and who won’t rest until they get all three.

    • Manfarang

      “everything the C of E accepted and taught before it was swamped by Anglo-Catholicism “.

      • Inspector General

        Not at all. It is notable how High and Low Anglican traditions rubbed along so well in the past (so make a note of it, Manfarang). Of course, both sides were still singing out of the same hymn book then.

        • Manfarang

          They obviously didn’t in South Africa.

    • Anton

      The Reformed CoE wouldn’t take Arians.

    • “He will remain a taig as the RCs do discipline very well and don’t allow the lay people a say.”

      Have you been to Confession and repented your heresy, Inspector? Until then, whilst you remain a member of the Catholic Church, based on your comments here, you are very likely subject to automatic excommunication for heresy – i.e. the obstinate doubt or denial of a defined Catholic doctrine – and quite possibly apostasy – i.e. the total repudiation of the Christian faith.
      That’s Church discipline for you!

      • Inspector General

        The Higher Understanding says…yes it’s coming through. It’s asking the Inspector to forgive Jack. Am launching an appeal. Appeal denied. In that case, the Inspector, with the authority gifted him by the Higher Understanding, hereby forgives you Jack, but only on this occasion. And get rid of that Kapo armband…

        • Your messages from Saint Jonnie Walker are “absolutely null and utterly void”.

          • Inspector General

            The Higher Understanding says to you Jack. “Think of a church as merely a human construct to facilitate togetherness with and worship of, God”. You can’t go wrong if you follow the Higher Understanding…

          • Fine – but stop claiming you’re a Roman Catholic.

          • Inspector General

            Sectarianism means a great deal to you. How not right…

          • Jack was born and raised in Belfast before his family moved to Essex. He hates sectarianism with a passion. It’s the truth that matters, not one’s tribal loyalty.

          • Inspector General

            In that case, old chap, relax here. The Inspector will look after you. You see, the Higher Understanding has no place for sectarianism within Christianity.

          • Except you are not a Christian – by any definition.

          • Anton

            Exactly. It’s the truth revealed in the scriptures that matter, not whether you are Roman Catholic, protestant, Eastern Orthodox or a member of a Chinese house church who considers these labels merely as part of European church history.

          • It is the truth as passed onto us scripture and the Church.

        • len

          ‘The higher understanding’..
          You could make Pope one day Inspector.
          Are you infallible as well?.

      • len

        No, that fear and intimidation.

  • There’s no licenc(s)e, but there’s definitely a recognition of orthodox and false preaching (2 Cor 11), and Paul seems to name those who are ‘authorised’ to work on his behalf or on behalf of the church (Phil 2:19 etc).

  • Manfarang

    Extra-juridical authority, in other words null and void.

    • Anton

      To be tested how?

      • Manfarang

        In a Church of England ecclesiastical court.

        • Anton

          An absurd notion given that the gospel is about grace set in contrast to law!

          • Manfarang

            In the Church of England, the ecclesiastical courts that formerly decided many matters such as disputes relating to marriage, divorce, wills, and defamation, still have jurisdiction of certain church-related matters (e.g. discipline of clergy, alteration of church property, and issues related to churchyards). Their separate status dates back to the 12th century when the Normans split them off from the mixed secular/religious county and local courts used by the Saxons. In contrast to the other courts of England the law used in ecclesiastical matters is at least partially a civil law system, not common law, although heavily governed by parliamentary statutes. Since the Reformation, ecclesiastical courts in England have been royal courts.

          • Anton

            So what?

          • Manfarang

            The CofE has its rules and regulations. A free church is bound by the law of the land. The idea that a religious organization doesn’t have to pay its employee NI contributions for example is wishful thinking.

          • Anton

            If it does then it is because it agreed to. It has exemptions over all kinds of things eg gay marriage.

          • Manfarang

            Exceptions were granted under certain statues by Parliament. There is ecclesiastical law that binds the CofE mainly today on internal matters. It is based on civil law and operates with own courts.In cases involving church doctrine, ceremony or ritual the Court of Ecclesiastical Causes Reserved hears the case. The Court is composed of three diocesan bishops and two appellate judges; it has jurisdiction over both of the provinces of Canterbury and York. The Court, however, meets very rarely.

          • Anton

            I started this by asking what you meant by Authority and it is now abundantly clear that you meant authority according to the laws of England, but the church acknowledges a higher authority does it not?

          • Manfarang

            They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with them.

  • Inspector General

    Observation here, chaps. In countries where the state currency is unreliable, a dual currency appears as if by magic to keep what trade there is going. Normally the yankee dollar. It’s why the US Treasury continue to print their 1 dollar notes or greenbacks as they call them. Not much use in high cost of living USA, but a valuable piece of paper in those aforementioned countries. Still equivalent to a days pay for some.

    Anyway, the point is, in countries where the state church is unreliable…well, you get the picture. Pryke will be of use to clergymen who need a bishop to refer to, but who will not under any circumstance approach the Feminist sitting on his local cathedra, if he be so unlucky as to have one, as indeed, Gloucester must suffer.

    • Manfarang

      They are dollar bills.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      local cathedra

      Do you mean the one at the end of the corridor?

  • Shadrach Fire

    What is it about Liberals? They really do want to be all things to all men and that sounds very nice but it does not fit in with the Gospel of Christ, only the gospel of peace.
    Christ said my yoke is easy and my burden is light, but that does not mean you can do whatever you will. It means that once you have surrendered to his will it then becomes easy. Those that choose to go their own way will one day find that they will not be permitted to enter into the marriage feast.

    • “They really do want to be all things to all men”

      They really don’t, they want to be all things only to the people who agree with them. Liberals are quicker to cry heretic than anyone else if you dare to depart from the Gospel of Diversity.

      • carl jacobs

        I find the Liberal attitude towards this subject to be curious. Liberals can barely stand to associate with conservatives lest they become ceremonially unclean, and yet they get angry when conservatives take steps to depart. Then they suddenly start talking about “schism”. They seem to want one of two things:

        1. Liberals want conservatives to stay in a position of subservience so liberals can enjoy the prospect of ruling over conservatives. This is a thinly disguised desire for revenge.

        OR

        2. Liberals want conservatives to depart into a diaspora of misery and dissolution and disintegration. This is also a thinly disguised desire for revenge.

        You think Liberals would be happy to get what they want – control of the CoE. But all they really seem to want is to insert the knife and twist it. And they get really upset when it appears that prospect might be denied to them. Revenge – the spirit of good disagreement.

        • I think you’re right, it’s all about revenge. It’s the same kind of thing you see when in revolutions when oppressed groups overthrow their oppressors and then become viscous persecutors themselves.

          Modern liberalism only seems to be able to exist within the framework of being a victim and having someone to hate. If all the conservatives cleared off or disappeared, they’d have nothing left. Then they’d simply turn on the part of the liberal wing that seems the least liberal and the whole thing would start again. Modern liberals cannot exist unless they’ve got someone else to compare themselves against to show how much more tolerant and enlightened they are. It’s sad, really. If they invested that much energy in evangelism, the whole world would be Christian by now!

  • Albert

    You’ve got to hand it to Anglicanism. It causes people to stay in the most extraordinary ways, when it is clear that it makes no sense for them to stay.

    • len

      You could say exactly the same about the RCC.

      • Albert

        How precisely Len? Do give details of the similarity.

        • len

          If you have a bible you already have the tools at hand.

          • Albert

            Then you’ve misunderstood the question. You need to show the comparison with the CofE as I indicated, and this you haven’t done.

          • len

            You have misunderstood the answer.Or have you?.

          • Albert

            No, you have misunderstood. The issue is not about what the Bible teaches, but about people’s perception of what the Bible teaches. What this new bishop fellow believes plainly means he should leave the CofE. But instead of leaving, he stays in this most remarkable way. Now you say you could say exactly the same of the Catholic Church. I’m asking how?

          • len

            Catholics I believe are as genuine in their aims as most other religious people.
            If Catholics compare Catholic doctrines with the Word of God its quite plain to see that Catholic doctrines (in some instances) are in conflict with the Word of God.
            Now Catholics cannot leave the Roman church (they will be thrown into outer darkness or some such thing) so they remain in the Roman Church knowing that (some) of the doctrines of Rome oppose the Word of God , but they remain in the Roman church out of fear of the consequences of leaving.
            You could say(probably will?) that there are as many errors in the C of E or any other church.
            I would agree that the C of E and many other churches have lost/are losing their way and that is one of the reasons why I no longer attend any church. Not the main reason ,but one of them.
            I am a born again Christian(as Christ commanded every believer to be) and the Holy Spirit is my Guide(as Jesus promised).

          • Albert

            If Catholics compare Catholic doctrines with the Word of God its quite plain to see that Catholic doctrines (in some instances) are in conflict with the Word of God.

            Now this is the step that fails. For even if what you say is true (which it isn’t, Catholic teaching contradicts your doctrine, not the Bible’s), then the analogy would still fail, for the point is that this new bishop fellow clearly believes things that mean he should not be in the CofE. In other words, this guy should not be an Anglican because he is too orthodox. But that could not be said of Catholics.

            so they remain in the Roman Church knowing that (some) of the doctrines of Rome oppose the Word of God

            They cannot know that, because it is not true.

            I am a born again Christian(as Christ commanded every believer to be) and the Holy Spirit is my Guide(as Jesus promised).

            I can say just the same, although I would mean something different.

          • len

            I think you are tying yourself in knots Albert.
            It take Catholics to make a dogs breakfast out of simple facts.

          • Albert

            Odd. On the one hand you accuse me of being overly clear and on the other hand you say I am tying myself in knots. Surely, the muddle is yours.

          • len

            Childish response to a genuine answer,

          • Albert

            Now come on, it wasn’t much of an answer. I can hardly be faulted for not answering an argument that hasn’t been stated.

    • bluedog

      Well it’s interesting and challenging isn’t it?If it wasn’t, you wouldn’t post here. The Roman alternative of blind obedience to the Magisterium must be stultifying. Deviate from the path and purgatory and hell-fire await.

      • Albert

        If telling yourself such a lie is what keeps you in the CofE, you could cross the Tiber.

        • bluedog

          No thanks.

    • Cressida de Nova

      Come now…you of all people should know that anti catholicism is so entrenched in the Protestant world that for many swimming the Tiber would never be a consideration regardless of the debauchery and perversion that is countenanced

      • Albert

        True, but this fellow is going the other way – in a more Protestant direction. He’s not likely to be tempted by Rome.

      • bluedog

        Heavens, Cressida. Are you holding out debauchery as an incentive to swim the Tiber?

  • According to Pope Leo’s letter Apostolicae curae (1896), all Anglican orders are “absolutely null and utterly void”. This was reiterated by the then Cardinal Ratzinger in his doctrinal commentary on Ad Tuendam Fidem (1998).

    Anglican orders are themselves invalid, but some Anglicans are nevertheless validly ordained – not in virtue of their Anglican orders, but in virtue of a post-Edwardian reintroduction of valid orders conferred by break-away Catholic bishops or Orthodox prelates, such that a given Anglican minister might, by research, be able to trace his orders back to a prelate possessed of valid orders.

    So what we have here is illicitly conferred orders, according to Church of England discipline, which, in any event, are absolutely null and utterly void.

    • Inspector General

      Same old Jack. The RCC will NEVER accept Anglican orders because to do so means acknowledging that there was merit in the Reformation. However, we do have the spectre of popes and AoCs meeting up, sniffing around each other like dogs, and agreeing to do something helpful…whatever that is….

      • There’s a difference between schism and heresy and illicit orders and invalid orders, Inspector. The Church of England, under Edward, changed the sacrament of ordination rendering it invalid.

    • carl jacobs

      According to Pope Leo’s letter Apostolicae curae (1896), all Anglican orders are “absolutely null and utterly void”.

      Umm … so?

      • So, it doesn’t matter who ordains who if they’re not competent to do so, i.e. Apostolic succession, or use an invalid form.

        • carl jacobs

          It’s nice that the RCC has an opinion but who besides the RCC cares about it? So the RCC thinks Anglican orders are invalid. Send along $1 and we’ll have the price of a cup of coffee.

          • Do you believe in the concept of an ordained priesthood?

          • carl jacobs

            A sacerdotal priesthood? No. But you knew that. The more important question is “Do I recognize the authority of the RCC to make binding declarations?” No. And you knew that as well.

          • It seems the Anglicans do, however, or at least some of them, and this is the topic under discussion.

          • carl jacobs

            I am reasonably sure that the parish at the center of this story cares nothing about RC concepts of ordination.

          • The ordination for an Anglican would be valid but illicit – i.e conferred without appropriate authority. They probably do care about their own understanding of validity.

          • carl jacobs

            What does the opinion of the Pope have to do with it, though? “RCC disapproves. In further news, the sun sets in the West.” Yes we know that. If we were concerned we would be RC.

          • It’s more than an “opinion”. He is Christ’s representative on earth and all Christians are ultimately subject to his authority, correctly exercised, whether they accept this or not.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Curiously the Eastern churches don’t accept his authority. Victor got short shrift when trying to impose it and even Irenaeus told him to cool it.

          • Anton

            I could say that you were equally subject to my authority and it would be equally nonsensical.

          • Show Jack where Christ gave you and your successors this authority in place of Peter and the Apostles.

          • Anton

            Show me where Christ gave Peter’s successors authority.

          • Read scripture and the history of the early church.

          • len

            Facts jack, give us facts please

          • Anton

            So you can’t?

          • Albert

            The issue really related to the situation of 1896, with some Anglicans claiming the validity of Anglican orders as a way of bringing about unity with Catholicism. Clearly, none of that has any relevance today since, with women’s ordination such unity is impossible – even if there were no other obstacle. Beyond that, the parish in question would have no interest in the issue.

          • bluedog

            If the Pope can allow the Anglican form of Evensong to be celebrated in St Peter’s, he implicitly recognises the Anglican communion. It follows that Francis is indicating his own lack of belief in Apostolicae curae. None of which really matters, but it’s worthy of note in the context of this thread.

          • Albert

            How did the logic of that follow?

          • bluedog

            I don’t understand the question.

          • Albert

            How does it logically follow that because Anglican Evensong takes place in St Peter’s that therefore the Pope recognises the Anglican communion? You don’t even say what he recognises it as!

          • bluedog

            Far be it for me to second guess the Pope’s thoughts on the Anglican communion. One can only observe that if the Roman Church admits an Anglican form of worship in St Peters, a form of recognition appears to be conferred, both on the service itself and possibly even the Anglican communion.

          • Albert

            Far be it for me to second guess the Pope’s thoughts on the Anglican communion.

            Which is exactly what you did.

            One can only observe that if the Roman Church admits an Anglican form of worship in St Peters, a form of recognition appears to be conferred, both on the service itself and possibly even the Anglican communion.

            Sure. But that’s never been in doubt. The issue here is the validity of Anglican orders (that’s what Apostolicae cure is about), and they can hardly be said to be recognized by having Evensong in St Peter’s. But if you think you can make that argument, make it.

          • bluedog

            ‘But if you think you can make that argument, make it.’

            More a question than an argument, but on November 26, 2006, Pope Benedict offered Archbishop Rowan Williams use of the main altar of the Dominican Basilica of Santa Sabina for celebration of a Pontifical Festival Eucharist, according to the rite of the Church of England. Doesn’t that recognise Anglican orders?

          • Albert

            No. Pope Benedict, as Joseph Ratzinger had expressly denied Anglican orders. So whatever he meant by that offer, he did not mean to recognize Anglican orders. I think however, that you make an interesting point, and one which, since becoming a Catholic I have found frustrating in Catholicism. Cradle Catholics don’t seem to realise that whenever they make an ecumenical gesture of friendship, this is always understood by Protestants to be some great ecclesial recognition.

          • bluedog

            One can go further. Is it not true to say that the Roman Church now allows confirmed Anglicans to take Communion in a Catholic church where there is no Anglican church available? For example, when travelling in countries where Christianity is a minority religion. If this thought is correct, what does this dispensation imply?

          • Albert

            This is true, but I don’t know that it is recent. But again, it implies nothing at all about Anglican orders, and everything about the importance of the sacraments. An Anglican receiving communion on these grounds needs to believe what we do about the Eucharist. The key point of the dispensation is that Anglicans cannot receive communion except in these very specific cases.

          • The RCC does recognise the Anglican Communion as an ecclesiastical community which is not in communion with Rome. The RCC acknowledges that Anglicanism has its roots in Catholicism and that it still (mainly) accepts the threefold order of ministry and therefore has a kind of ‘special realtionship’ with Rome which other Protestant denominations don’t necessarily have. However, none of that implies that the RCC recognises that Anglican orders are *valid*, any more than any church renting its hall out to a yoga class recognises that Hinduism is valid.

          • Cressida de Nova

            All I know (as every Catholic does) is that the Church can never recognise Anglican orders, regardless of who is invited to stand at the altar. No Pope can decree this. Protestantism is heretical by its origins and has too many beliefs which are in conflict with the’ true’ Church of Jesus Christ.

          • Evensong isn’t a sacrament, it’s worship that doesn’t require an ordained priest. If he concelebrated the Eucharist, you’d have a point.

          • bluedog

            You’re using Roman definitions for an Anglican service.

          • Nonsense. It’s not considered a sacrament even by Anglican standards.

          • bluedog

            See above regarding Benedict. Your comments?

          • bluedog

            Pope Benedict did a similar thing with his express permission when, on November 26, 2006, he offered Archbishop Rowan Williams use of the main altar of the Dominican Basilica of Santa Sabina for celebration of a Pontifical Festival Eucharist, according to the rite of the Church of England. What does that imply?

          • Was the service co-concelebrated?

            Archbishop Williams presided at an Anglican liturgy in the Basilica of Santa Sabina. It was intended to promote Christian unity. Should a Catholic Church be used for a Protestant Eucharist service when they have their own suitable premises available? In normal circumstances, no. While Eucharistic liturgies celebrated by Protestant clergy lack certainty and validity, they are not empty acts or acts of sacrilege. A true and correct form and intention may be present, what is lacking is validity of orders.

          • bluedog

            If the Pope gives his express permission to the Archbishop of Canterbury to celebrate the Eucharist using the Anglican rite in a Catholic church, the issue of con-celebration would seem to be redundant.

          • How so? As Jack said, it was an act of charity to promote Christian unity. According to Catholic doctrine, the Eucharistic service may have had correct form (the words of consecration) and intent the priest intended to transubstantiate the bread and wine) but as the celebrant was not validly ordained, the sacrament was not effected. If it had been co-celebrated by a validly ordained priest, then it would be a different matter.

            The Anglican rite isn’t the issue.

          • bluedog

            ‘…celebration of a Pontifical Festival Eucharist,’

            The Eucharist celebrated by Williams in a Catholic church was done as part of a Catholic festival by order of Pope Benedict. Why would the Pope in Rome permit what you describe as an ineligible priest to celebrate the Eucharist if, as you claim, that celebration was invalid due to the deficient orders of the celebrating priest?

          • It’s not Jack’s claim; it’s clear and incontrovertible Catholic teaching. Remember, it was the same Pope who established the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham for Anglican clergy who, after a Catholic ordination, are able to retain their Anglican liturgical heritage and traditions.

          • bluedog

            ‘While Eucharistic liturgies celebrated by Protestant clergy lack certainty and validity, they are not empty acts or acts of sacrilege. A true and correct form and intention may be present, what is lacking is validity of orders.’

            If the orders are invalid the sacrament is invalidly celebrated. Except that when the Pope declares the sacrament is to be celebrated by an invalidly ordered priest the celebration is compliant in all regards, isn’t it? The Pope being infallible and all that.

          • No – (point 1), it wasn’t an infallible act or “declaration” by Pope Benedict, it was a concession, an act of hospitality and charity for the sake of a hoped for future unity; and (point 2), he didn’t “declare” it was an authentic Eucharist celebration or ordain the celebrant beforehand. Not everything a Pope writes or speaks is an act of the Extraordinary Magisterium.
            By the way, the Catholic Church accepts that Anglican worship and services offer spiritual graces to participants – just not an authentic Eucharist.

          • Albert

            Actually, some members of the CofE cared very much. The Archbishops of Canterbury and York even penned a letter Saepius officio, defending their orders. But it must be said that most Anglicans didn’t care – they didn’t want the same priesthood as the Catholic Church. Which kind of proves Leo’s point.

          • Martin

            Albert

            There is but one office of priest in the Christian Church and that is already taken.

          • Albert

            There is a sense in which that is true and a sense in which that is false. Insofar as it is true, it is irrelevant.

          • Martin

            Albert

            It is not false, in any sense, and its truth is not irrelevant.

          • Albert

            Not false in any sense? So there is only one priest and no one participates in his priesthood in any sense?

            But the Bible says:

            because of the grace given me by God to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

            Come to him, to that living stone, rejected by men but in God’s sight chosen and precious; and like living stones be yourselves built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

            But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

            To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

            etc.

            But you say There is but one office of priest in the Christian Church and that is already taken and that this statement is not false in any sense. But the Bible clearly shows that there are several senses in which it is false.

            Sure, no one is a priest in any sense, instead of Christ. But it is pretty clear that there are those who share in his priesthood and are plainly called priests by scripture. Therefore your claim is false. Modify it to make it biblical and it will become irrelevant, since no one thinks there are priests instead of Christ.

          • Martin

            Albert

            All believers are priests in Paul’s sense, but they have no priestly office.

          • Albert

            What a fascinating distinction. What do you mean by office?

          • Martin

            Albert

            As in deacon or elder/overseer is an office, indeed the only offices.

          • Albert

            They are not the only roles called office in the NT. Why do you limit the word office to them?

          • Martin

            Albert

            They are the only offices given to the Christian churches.

          • Albert

            No they are not. That’s plainly false.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Show me, from the Bible, what other offices were given to the Church.

          • Albert

            The apostles have an office in the Church: Acts. 1.20 and Col.1.25.

          • Martin

            Albert

            But the Apostles are only there at the beginning, their office ceases once the apostolic age ceases. They have no successors.

          • Albert

            They are part of the Church and they have an office, so your claim was simply false. The question is what is the significance of the Apostles? You claim they have no successors, I claim that they do. Since I see no reason to think you have any authority in this matter, I see no reason to deny that there is office in the Church.

          • Martin

            Albert

            They were not offices in the Church, they were those who set the Church up. under God. They have no successors. least of all those who dress themselves up in fancy clothes, oppress the ignorant and worship idols.

          • Albert

            So the apostles are not part of the Church? Which Bible are you reading? You assert they have no successors, but you have no evidence for this.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Please read what I wrote. The Apostles are not part of the ongoing Church on Earth. They are not appointed by the Church as deacons and elders/overseers are.

          • Albert

            But that’s not what you wrote. The fact is, the apostles, whether or not there is any succession, are part of the Church. Therefore your earlier comments about office are false. Now we can agree or disagree about succession. I believe there is succession, and therefore, there remains that office in the Church.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Or rather, it’s not what you read into my post. You can believe what you like but your belief does not conform to Scripture.

          • Albert

            No – you never said what you said you said. As for the rest of your post you should have written: your belief does not conform to my [Martin’s] interpretation of Scripture.

            But why should I care about that?

          • Martin

            Albert

            Apparently you do care, but you’d have to show me where Scripture agrees with your position to make me change my mind.

          • Albert

            Your whole position rests on sola scriptura and the perspicuity of scripture. Neither doctrine is taught in scripture, and both are clearly taught against. So for you to then demand that I produce scripture in defence of my position, that you will judge, is totally inconsistent.

          • Martin

            Albert

            We both know that Jesus constantly used Scripture to prove His point, with the implicit assumption that His hearers should be able to understand Scripture, and condemned the traditions of men. You deny what Scripture says and replace it with the traditions of men, like the Pharisees. Now you are dodging my requirement to prove I am wrong from Scripture.

          • Albert

            We both know that Jesus constantly used Scripture to prove His point, with the implicit assumption that His hearers should be able to understand Scripture

            No that’s plainly contrary to scripture. Jesus opened the scriptures to them because they did not understand them:

            1. But Jesus answered them, “You are wrong, because you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God.”

            2. And he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” … But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Eli’jah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there came a great famine over all the land; and Eli’jah was sent to none of them but only to Zar’ephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Eli’sha; and none of them was cleansed, but only Na’aman the Syrian.” When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong.

            3. And taking the twelve, he said to them, “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written of the Son of man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered to the Gentiles, and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon; they will scourge him and kill him, and on the third day he will rise.” But they understood none of these things; this saying was hid from them, and they did not grasp what was said.

            4. And he said to them, “O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

            5. Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead,
            and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

            6. You search the scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness to me;
            yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.

            7. for as yet they did not know the scripture, that he must rise from the dead.

            Now I could continue, but I would have thought that is enough to demonstrate that your position, is, as you put it one of the traditions of men.

            You deny what Scripture says and replace it with the traditions of men, like the Pharisees.

            Except of course, as just demonstrated, it is you that are denying the scripture and replacing it (rather legalistically, like the Pharisees) with the traditions of men.

            Now you are dodging my requirement to prove I am wrong from Scripture.

            Now the key word there is not “dodging” but “requirement”. It is your requirement that I prove my position (i) to you (ii) from scripture alone. But that is just your requirement, as it is, scripture puts no such burden on men (Matt.23.4), but on the contrary says: stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter and no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation for 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.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Telling them they were wrong because they had failed to to learn from Scripture. You have proven me right. As He said to Nicodemus:

            Jesus answered him, Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things? (John 3:10 [ESV])

            And we see the same failure in the church of Rome. You follow man made traditions, not what God has given us in the Bible. The traditions held by the Early Church were, of course, a belief in one God and His word, not the myriad of fairy stories you have made up.

            We see here why you never give references:

            “but on the contrary says: stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter and no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation for 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.”

            Because here you’ve strung a bunch of passages together with no thought for context and meaning. Giving no references prevents easy checking.

            You’ve not shown any evidence that sola scriptura is against Scripture nor that is not possible for an ordinary Christian, who is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, to understand its meaning. To deny to the people that right is to deny them the gospel.

            You deny sola scriptura for the same reason the leaders of the Jews invented laws and traditions, to keep the people in subjection

          • Albert

            Really Martin? You don’t actually think that will do, do you? This was your original claim:

            We both know that Jesus constantly used Scripture to prove His point, with the implicit assumption that His hearers should be able to understand Scripture

            Now I pointed out that he himself said his hearers could not understand the scripture:

            And taking the twelve, he said to them, “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written of the Son of man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered to the Gentiles, and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon; they will scourge him and kill him, and on the third day he will rise.” But they understood none of these things

            and so your point was simply, flatly opposed to scripture.

            But now you have changed your position from understand to learn from:

            Telling them they were wrong because they had failed to to learn from Scripture.

            Bizarrely, and without explanation, you think John 3 defends your point. Surely, it is the opposite: despite being a teacher of Israel Nicodemus is not able to understand the scriptures.

            With a scrupulous inattention to logic, you continue:

            And we see the same failure in the church of Rome. You follow man made traditions, not what God has given us in the Bible

            But the problem is Martin, that your sola scriptura doctrine is not found in scripture. It’s a tradition of men designed to nullify the word of God.

            Because here you’ve strung a bunch of passages together with no thought for context and meaning.

            Well that’s just an assertion without evidence or argument. And until you provide such, my posts will simply demonstrate that you make assertions without thought for content and meaning.

            Giving no references prevents easy checking.

            Really? You are joking? Highlight the text, right-click and then select “search Google for ‘…'”. You will be taken straight to the passage, and with a further click you can see the entire chapter. But a Protestant such as you really ought to just know the scripture.

            And then you put your illogicality together with your ignorance of scripture:

            You’ve not shown any evidence that sola scriptura is against Scripture

            I don’t have to show it is against scripture. It’s your claim, you must prove it on its own terms. Bizarrely, you think that if you are unconvinced by arguments against the innovation of sola scriptura, that somehow sola scriptura is proved. That’s wrong at every level.

            or that is not possible for an ordinary Christian, who is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, to understand its meaning

            Again, where is your proof of that? How do you know who is indwelt by the Holy Spirit? And how does such a person know a true from a false interpretation? Finally, given that you presume you have such a gift, why is it you so often make unsubstantiated claims which are easy to show to be contrary to scripture?

            To deny to the people that right is to deny them the gospel.

            No it isn’t . That’s just another of your unevidenced and unreasoned claims.

            You deny sola scriptura for the same reason the leaders of the Jews invented laws and traditions, to keep the people in subjection

            You affirm sola scriptura so that you do not have to accept the authority Christ gave us.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Your problem is that Jesus held them responsible for not understanding. It wasn’t that they couldn’t understand, they would not understand. And in the case of going up to Jerusalem, we are told they were kept from understanding. My position, which I have not changed, is not opposed to Scripture.

            Jesus clearly blames Nicodemus for his failure to understand and, like you, he clearly understood the traditions of men.

            I have to wonder how you imagine that having Scripture alone as your authority nullifies Scripture, or do you think that the word of God is something other than Scripture? But as Jesus says:

            thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.
            (Mark 7:13 [ESV])

            Which is what you do. Your traditions are the traditions of men.

            My assertion is clearly proven by observation:

            “stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter and no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation for 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.”

            Isn’t it curious how there is a capital letter in the middle there. That shows how dishonest you are, you’d certainly not find that passage in Scripture.

            I’ve already shown, from the testimony of Jesus, that it is Scripture and Scripture alone that is the authority. And Christians know when they are indwelt by the Holy Spirit:

            The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, (Romans 8:16 [ESV])

            And no, you haven’t shown what I say to be contrary to Scripture. Even if your church had once had authority it was clearly lost when the popes were clearly evil immoral people. Not, of course, that the Early Church Fathers considered Rome to be the authority.

          • Albert

            Your problem is that Jesus held them responsible for not understanding. It wasn’t that they couldn’t understand, they would not understand.

            Of course there are occasions when people are culpably blind to the meaning of scripture. But Jesus does not teach and scripture nowhere so much as hints that this is universal explanation. On the contrary, scripture repeatedly teaches that the mysteries are hidden until now (i.e. the proclamation of the Gospel):

            But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glorification. None of the rulers of this age understood this; for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

            Now, according to you, they did not understand this because the would not understand it. But this is not what Jesus teaches, for he says “Forgive them, Father, they know not what they do.”

            In any case, the idea that these mysteries were hidden is repeatedly taught in scripture:

            to make the word of God fully known, the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now made manifest to his saints.

            So evidently, your earlier claim:

            We both know that Jesus constantly used Scripture to prove His point, with the implicit assumption that His hearers should be able to understand Scripture

            is false – at least as far as the Gospel is concerned. It is true that the OT speaks of Christ, but it remains hidden until it is proclaimed:

            To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all men see what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things;
            that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places.

            In other words, it was hidden even from the angels. And yet, according to you, Jesus taught that all this was clear in the OT and it was only wilful unbelief that caused men not to see it. Where incidentally, did Jesus teach this?

            And even if your could be defended, you seem to have forgotten that the Gospel is a proclamation to sinners. Thus if sinful men do not see the Gospel in scripture because, being sinners they refuse to accept it, how can anyone accept it?

            And in the case of going up to Jerusalem, we are told they were kept from understanding.

            No we are not. In that passage, it says they were kept from recognising Christ, not from understanding the scripture.

            Jesus clearly blames Nicodemus for his failure to understand and, like you, he clearly understood the traditions of men.

            The same problem again: it simply does not say that. That is what you think it is must be saying because you constantly read your own opinions into the scripture. All it says is:

            Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand this? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen; but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

            There’s no indication of the cause of his unbelief in that passage, and nothing at all about the traditions of men.

            I have to wonder how you imagine that having Scripture alone as your authority nullifies Scripture

            Because (i) it is not taught in scripture and so is self-refuting and (ii) it is contradicted by scripture. It is thus, on its own terms a tradition of men.

            or do you think that the word of God is something other than Scripture?

            Obviously, I think it is scripture but equally obviously, I think it is more than scripture. It is first and foremost a person: the Son of God, and it is the word proclaimed and handed on.

            thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down.

            There is nothing here that is opposed to tradition. It is the traditions of men Jesus is complaining about, not tradition per se. Don’t you know that scripture sometimes commends tradition? Do you really think scripture contradicts itself?

            Isn’t it curious how there is a capital letter in the middle there. That shows how dishonest you are, you’d certainly not find that passage in Scripture.

            You can accuse me of dishonesty if you like, but I think anyone reading this realises that you are ignorant and have just made a fool of yourself. The passages I cited are from 2 Peter 1.20 and then (I inserted the word “for” – not italics in my post currently marked 8 days ago, to indicate the word was not scripture) 2 Peter 3.16b. If you prefer it, it’s here (captialisations are original http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/r/rsv/rsv-idx?type=DIV1&byte=5503902 ):

            First of all you must understand this, that no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation

            FOR

            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.

            But you’re so busy judging me and determining that I am dishonest that you fail to notice the quotations were perfectly legitimate. So keen are you to condemn Catholics as unscriptural, that you do not seem to see that the command “Love [even] your enemy” is in the Bible. And so, even if your arguments were scriptural (which they aren’t) you are still in the old Pharisaic position of:

            for you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law, justice and mercy and faith; these you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!

            You then claim:

            I’ve already shown, from the testimony of Jesus, that it is Scripture and Scripture alone that is the authority.

            No you didn’t. You gave some passages that you thought did that and so you set them against other passages of scripture that say the contrary.

            And Christians know when they are indwelt by the Holy Spirit:
            The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God

            But if by “indwelt by the Holy Spirit” you mean, as you previously meant “have the gift of interpretation”, I would point out that the passage you have cited does not do that work, nor could it, since it is contrary to other passages of scripture which limit the gift of understanding.

            Even if your church had once had authority it was clearly lost when the popes were clearly evil immoral people.

            What a pelagian (works righteousness) conception of the Church you have!

            Not, of course, that the Early Church Fathers considered Rome to be the authority.

            Does not Ignatius say Rome “presides in love”? And what of Irenaeus:

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

            I could give more if you like…

          • Martin

            Albert

            He said to them, Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him: (Matthew 12:3 [ESV])

            Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless? (Matthew 12:5 [ESV])

            He answered, Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, (Matthew 19:4 [ESV])

            And as for the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was said to you by God: (Matthew 22:31 [ESV])

            Have you not read this Scripture:

            The stone that the builders rejected
            has become the cornerstone;
            this was the Lord’s doing,
            and it is marvelous in our eyes?
            (Mark 12:10-11 [ESV])

            And as for the dead being raised, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the bush, how God spoke to him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? (Mark 12:26 [ESV])

            Seems to me that Jesus was consistent in teaching that they should have read and taken to heart what Scripture says. But then you interpret everything in terms of what the church of Rome have developed as doctrine.

            You have given no references to Scripture to support your point.

            “No we are not. In that passage, it says they were kept from recognising Christ, not from understanding the scripture.”

            And taking the twelve, he said to them, See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered over to the Gentiles and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon. And after flogging him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise. But they understood none of these things. This saying was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.
            (Luke 18:31-34 [ESV])

            Says exactly what I said it did.

            All you have is the traditions of men, invented over the ages.

            You linked a bunch of passages together to make them mean what you want them to mean. They don’t.

            As I said, I showed you the testimony of Jesus that it is Scripture and Scripture alone that is the authority, not your man made traditions, that is a loving act.

            You imagine that when there are popes who clearly are not Christians that they can pass on tradition? It is hardly pelagian to question that. Indeed, the idea that a sweaty palm can pass on something is laughable. Your church is like those churches in Revelation that Christ condemns.

            Isn’t it strange how, when the question of what should be required of the Gentiles, they didn’t just ask Peter but called a council, that Peter wasn’t even chair of. When controversy arose they didn’t ask Rome, they called a council. When questions over the date of Easter arose, Rome’s view didn’t prevail, indeed Victor got his wrist slapped by Irenaeus for going against tradition.

            And you will note that Irenaeus doesn’t speak of the bishop of Rome but its church, the people.

            I could give more if you like…but since you will not receive the word of scripture, how will you accept the testimony of the fathers?

            Precisely.

          • Albert

            As usual, the passages with which you begin your post do not say what you think they say. They are perhaps consistent with your point of view, but they are equally consistent with mine. I do not hold that scripture is completely impenetrable – obviously it isn’t. What I disagree with is any view that scripture (and in the case of Jesus’ teaching, we mean the OT) is wholly comprehensible to the degree that nothing further is needed, so that anyone who does not believe exactly what you believe is wicked. It is evident that people did not realise the Christ was to die and rise again, until Jesus unveiled that meaning. Who would have thought, for example that the sign of the prophet Jonah would refer to the resurrection? Not the apostles, apparently.

            Your interpretation fails to take account of all that, and it fails to notice that Jesus is, by his very teaching, often opening to them what had been unclear to them. This point I have proved by a huge variety of texts, which are entirely on my interpretation consistent with yours, while your interpretation sets scripture against itself. For you, sometimes scripture makes it seem that sin is the cause of not understanding, while in other places it is evident – explicit – that it is the fact that these things are hidden until revealed in Christ. Please note also, that what I say here is not controversial or exclusively Catholic. Only someone with a very limited knowledge of scripture would deny it.

            You have given no references to Scripture to support your point.

            Neither does our Lord – as I have pointed out before. Yet you continue to use this critique against me.

            (Luke 18:31-34 [ESV])
            Says exactly what I said it did.

            Then you introduced the passage without warning (and, ironically, without reference). We had been discussing Emmaus, so I did not follow your meaning. But it makes little difference because the Emmaus passage is sufficient for my argument, and Luke 18 does not say that it is sin that prevented them from understanding the passage. Indeed, it does not say what keeps them from understanding. But it is pretty clear that Jesus understood himself to be interpreting the OT, so it is evident that, contrary to your claims, he did not in fact expect them to understand the scripture.

            All you have is the traditions of men, invented over the ages.

            Why then do I spend so much time arguing with you about scripture? I say again, I do not think, and did not think, even as a Protestant, that Evangelical teaching on the solas is scriptural. It’s made up. It’s what happens when you look at the scripture through nominalist spectacles.

            You linked a bunch of passages together to make them mean what you want them to mean. They don’t.

            No I didn’t and you haven’t shown that. I used a serious of passages to show that the meaning you impose on the text cannot be got out of the text. In response, all you have done is produce a load of other passages which are equally consistent with my view and the rest of scripture as with your view (which remains inconsistent with the rest of scripture).

            You imagine that when there are popes who clearly are not Christians that they can pass on tradition? It is hardly pelagian to question that. Indeed, the idea that a sweaty palm can pass on something is laughable.

            You imagine that the whole church was wrong for 1500 years until a bunch of individuals suddenly came up with the truth? Is that what you think of the Holy Spirit. You fail to understand the basic element of grace. How far you are from scripture! Consider Judas – he proclaimed the Gospel and cast out demons, but he was a sinner himself. Scripture says even sinners can speak as prophets even when they sin against Christ in so doing (John 11.51) but you do not believe this teaching (or perhaps, given your limited grasp of scripture, perhaps you have not noticed this teaching).

            Isn’t it strange how, when the question of what should be required of the Gentiles, they didn’t just ask Peter but called a council, that Peter wasn’t even chair of.

            That’s not remotely surprising. Most of Catholic teaching is given in Council, and few are the occasions (if at all) when the Pope presides. What is usually the case is that the Pope may make a decisive intervention, as in Acts 15. So as usual, you show you know neither the scripture nor the Catholic teaching you disagree with.

            When questions over the date of Easter arose, Rome’s view didn’t prevail, indeed Victor got his wrist slapped by Irenaeus

            Quite right too in my opinion. But what Irenaeus does not say is that Victor does not have the authority to behave in such a way.

            And you will note that Irenaeus doesn’t speak of the bishop of Rome but its church, the people.

            It is entirely right to speak of the Church of Rome. However, you display yet more ignorance when you say he speaks not of the bishop but of Rome’s people. For it is Ireneaeus who says:

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

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

            It never occurs to you to think you might simply be in error. And so you simply claim things, either in the Fathers or in scripture, which are easily shown to be false – simply because you do not read enough. And this is a problem for Protestants, for how can anyone ever know whether he has read enough scripture?

          • Martin

            Albert

            The passages do say what I think they say, your understanding is flawed. And perhaps you can point out where I said that Scripture is wholly comprehensible. Nor have I said that “anyone who does not believe exactly what you believe is wicked”. What I have said is that the Apostles were kept from understanding, which is what the text says.

            You have produced no biblical texts to support your position. I, on the other hand have produced a number which show that the hearers were expected to have understood.

            And taking the twelve, he said to them, See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered over to the Gentiles and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon. And after flogging him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise. But they understood none of these things. This saying was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.
            (Luke 18:31-34 [ESV]) [emphasis mine]

            You said:
            “No we are not. In that passage, it says they were kept from recognising Christ, not from understanding the scripture.”

            Seems it doesn’t say what you said.

            Yes you did link a bunch of passages together:

            “stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter and no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation for 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.”

            Is the following passages linked together, based on no rhyme or reason.

            So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.
            (II Thessalonians 2:15 [ESV])

            knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. (II Peter 1:20 [ESV])

            as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. (II Peter 3:16 [ESV])

            It’s hardly surprising you refuse to provide references.

            No, I don’t imagine the Church has been wrong for 1500 years, because your little sect, which isn’t part of Christ’s Church, hasn’t been around all that long in the fullness of it’s error. Down through the ages Christians have seen through your errors as they have arisen, and some have even survived persecution.

            One has to wonder what use the pope is, when he cannot pronounce in Jerusalem or in modern day Rome. Certainly Peter made no intervention in Jerusalem, being but one witness. Let’s face it, Peter had already shown himself unreliable on the matter, so much so that Paul had to correct him. Some foundation for the Church he would have been!

            There was, of course, no monarchical bishop of Rome at the time that the letter to the Corinthians was written. It makes no mention of anyone by name but is written as a letter of the believers in one place to the believers in another. Ireneaeus was, of course, writing against the Gnostics and trying to demonstrate that they were wrong because they did not follow the beliefs that had followed from the Apostles. Not a great basis for an argument but probably better than yours.

          • Albert

            The passages do say what I think they say, your understanding is flawed.

            They do not prove your point, or at least, you haven’t shown how they do.

            And perhaps you can point out where I said that Scripture is wholly comprehensible.

            I think you are confused. The point I am making is that just because some passages are comprehensible and said to be so by Jesus, does not mean that all other passages are comprehensible. Thus your point fails.

            You then say

            Nor have I said that “anyone who does not believe exactly what you believe is wicked”.

            You don’t need to. You are quite convinced, and have said so on several occasions, that when I say I read it differently, that I am being dishonest.

            What I have said is that the Apostles were kept from understanding, which is what the text says.

            Which is odd, because you had already said:

            We both know that Jesus constantly used Scripture to prove His point, with the implicit assumption that His hearers should be able to understand Scripture

            You then say:

            You have produced no biblical texts to support your position.

            Any reader can see that is just false.

            I, on the other hand have produced a number which show that the hearers were expected to have understood.

            You have produced a number of passages which you claim show that, but which I have disputed. But you then go on to produce a passage which directly contradicts that claim:

            And taking the twelve, he said to them, See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered over to the Gentiles and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon. And after flogging him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise. But they understood none of these things. This saying was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.
            (Luke 18:31-34 [ESV])

            You then say:

            You said:
            “No we are not. In that passage, it says they were kept from recognising Christ, not from understanding the scripture.”
            Seems it doesn’t say what you said.

            I’ve already answered this point. I was talking about Emmaus, but you changed the subject to Luke 18 without making that clear.

            Is the following passages linked together, based on no rhyme or reason.

            You say that there is no rhyme nor reason for linking the passages together, but a Protestant commentary, such as JND Kelly makes exactly that connection. Just because you can’t see the connection doesn’t mean it isn’t there. It just means you can’t see it.

            What the passages you quote have in common is that they speak against sola scriptura.

            It’s hardly surprising you refuse to provide references.

            If I was writing an academic paper I would provide references, as it is, this is a blog and time is limited. So, like every commentator in the Bible, I don’t provide references. I expect my readers to know the Bible.

            No, I don’t imagine the Church has been wrong for 1500 years, because your little sect, which isn’t part of Christ’s Church, hasn’t been around all that long in the fullness of it’s error. Down through the ages Christians have seen through your errors as they have arisen, and some have even survived persecution.

            I find it fascinating that someone who seems to be in communion only with himself regards the Catholic Church as “little”. But let that pass. What is the evidence of all these Christians down the ages believing your late medieval doctrine of sola fide?

            One has to wonder what use the pope is, when he cannot pronounce in Jerusalem or in modern day Rome.

            Who said he cannot? He chooses not to because the Holy Spirit does not only speak through him.

            Certainly Peter made no intervention in Jerusalem, being but one witness.

            I think you have never read Acts 15.

            Let’s face it, Peter had already shown himself unreliable on the matter, so much so that Paul had to correct him. Some foundation for the Church he would have been!

            Nor apparently, the Gospels.

            There was, of course, no monarchical bishop of Rome at the time that the letter to the Corinthians was written.

            Having complained about my lack of references, you introduce this point with no explanation that you are presumably talking about the First Epistle of Clement. Your point is based on presumption which does not support the earliest evidence we have.

            It makes no mention of anyone by name but is written as a letter of the believers in one place to the believers in another.

            So? You assume that you know how things would be if such and such was the case. But perhaps your assumption is wrong. What is evident is that Rome was able to intervene in the lives of other Churches.

            Ireneaeus was, of course, writing against the Gnostics and trying to demonstrate that they were wrong because they did not follow the beliefs that had followed from the Apostles. Not a great basis for an argument

            Why was it not a great basis for an argument? We know the answer, because of course, Irenaeus writing so early was appealing to tradition in apostolic succession. And that, unlike the early Church Fathers (whom you brought up remember) is something you will not accept. And yet, it precisely was that tradition that preserved the Gospel.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You mean you can’t see how those spoken to in those quotes were expected to be able to understand what was written? One has to wonder what you imagine the purpose of the Bible to be!

            So now you are saying that because some passages are difficult to understand sola scriptura is invalid?

            It’s your invention of spurious arguments that is dishonest.

            So tell me, do you accept that the Apostles were prevented from understanding?

            You do understand, I suppose, that Christ is called the Word of God and why?

            I don’t recall anything about Emmaus, maybe you should stop being lazy and give references. Frankly it takes little time.

            I’m not sure why you expect me to know Kelly’s commentary says, he doesn’t appear to be Reformed and the word Protestant covers a great many things.

            Hadn’t you realised that there are great many who believe as I do? It’s never been a numbers thing for Christ’s Church, it has always been a little flock. Rome is little in its theology, which in any case is as fractured as that of ‘protestantism’

            The pope cannot pronounce because you cannot know if he is right or not, it is not of his choosing. I’ve read Acts 15, that’s how I know they didn’t consider Peter as pope. And what early evidence do you have for a pope in Rome, let alone it being Peter? You’ll find that Ignatius, who tends to address bishops if there is but one, doesn’t do so to Rome.

            Irenaeus, of course, had as his handed down tradition, there is one God.

          • Albert

            It’s your invention of spurious arguments that is dishonest.

            You really are a shocking person. So because you do not understand my arguments, you think I must be dishonest. But as for scripture being clear, try this:

            But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law.

            Now if you wish to try and claim that somehow you are charitable in taking it upon yourself to “correct” me, see here:

            Always be prepared to make a defence to any one who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence

            I’m not going to carry arguing with you. Your grasp of scripture is pretty feebly, you have little grasp of the nature or argument because your world is so binary. You take it upon yourself to make windows men’s hearts.

          • Martin

            Albert

            I understand your arguments alright, it’s just that they have no validity and they appear to have been plucked out of the air.

            If you wish to complain how I reply, perhaps you should look to your own replies.

          • Albert

            You clearly don’t understand the Catholic position because you misrepresent it. You have read very little of the scriptures and cannot recognise them when they are quoted. You are incapable of seeing when those few passages you do know can be read in a different way. And yet you are serially abusive and claim with a to have a Mystic Meg’s capacity to tell when someone is being honest or not. It’s just poor. Hence I’m not even going to read beyond the first half a sentence of your post.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Are you denying that Rome demands the sinner does something to be saved, just like the judaisers? You pick and choose from James in order to support your claim when James says very clearly “I will show you my faith by my works”? It is very clear that he is not saying that works are required for salvation but that works provide the evidence that faith exists. I find it strange how you conveniently omit that point.

            It is also very clear that Jesus held the leaders of the Jews culpable for failing to understand the Scriptures. I gave you a number of passages where He said so:

            He said to them, Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him: (Matthew 12:3 [ESV]

            have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless? (Matthew 12:5 [ESV])

            He answered, Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, (Matthew 19:4 [ESV])

            And as for the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was said to you by God: (Matthew 22:31 [ESV])

            Have you not read this Scripture:

            The stone that the builders rejected
            has become the cornerstone;
            this was the Lord’s doing,
            and it is marvelous in our eyes?
            (Mark 12:10-11 [ESV])

            as for the dead being raised, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the bush, how God spoke to him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? (Mark 12:26

            He uses the words “have you not read” clearly implying that they should know this from reading the Scriptures. It is not necessary to have a sweaty hand placed on your head to understand Scripture. It should be sufficiently clear for even the heathen who picks up a Bible to see the state of their soul and their need of God.

          • Albert

            Are you denying that Rome demands the sinner does something to be saved

            Yes.

            just like the judaisers?

            Your problem is that you do not believe in the power of God’s grace. But as it is, scripture teaches I can do all things through him who strengthens me. But you don’t believe that.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You deny sola fide so clearly you are saying something is required in addition to faith, something the sinner must supply.

            Why do you give a quote that applies to the believer when speaking of salvation? Are you saying that predestination is true?

          • Albert

            You deny sola fide so clearly you are saying something is required in addition to faith, something the sinner must supply.

            Are rather something that God supplies, by grace, in the sinner. Why don’t you try and understand what it is that you disagree with? What are you so afraid of?

            Why do you give a quote that applies to the believer when speaking of salvation?

            Because that’s what the Catholic faith and passage both mean.

            Are you saying that predestination is true?

            You’d need to explain how that follows, but yes, single predestination is true.

          • Martin

            Albert

            What God’s grace does is raise the dead, give them spiritual life and faith so that they become part of God’s Church.

            That passage is referring to those who have received God’s grace that saves, not to those who have not received saving grace.

            Predestination is that God has chosen some, before the foundation of the World, to be saved. There is nothing ‘double’ about it.

          • Albert

            That passage is referring to those who have received God’s grace that saves, not to those who have not received saving grace.

            If you weren’t such an ignoramus, you would know that that is exactly what I am saying. The reason you can’t see that is because there is a logical leap in your thinking, which is utterly glaring to me, but apparently not noticed by you.

            Predestination is that God has chosen some, before the foundation of the World, to be saved. There is nothing ‘double’ about it.

            Some of your own co-religionist would disagree with you. But why did you raise the question of predestination?

          • Martin

            Albert

            So are you saying that the Jewish leaders who Jesus was condemning for failing to understand the clear testimony of Scripture were believers? Sadly they clearly weren’t, yet they were still expected to understand the clear testimony of Scripture.

            I raised predestination because you appeared to be implying it. And I doubt that any soundly reformed person would have a problem with my definition.

          • Albert

            Which passage are you talking about? It seems to me that you keep changing your mind. And what’s wrong with my implying predestination? Reformed Christians would not have a problem with your definition, except that they might wish to say more.

          • Martin

            Albert

            I was referring back to the passages where Jesus rebukes the leaders of the Jews for not believing Scripture. Is that so hard to understand?

            I merely asked if I was understanding you correctly, since you sometimes seem to change your mind.

          • Albert

            I thought you were referring to salvation. After all, here are some of your comments:

            Are you denying that Rome demands the sinner does something to be saved

            just like the judaisers?

            And so I said:

            I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

            And you replied:

            You deny sola fide so clearly you are saying something is required in addition to faith, something the sinner must supply.

            Why do you give a quote that applies to the believer when speaking of salvation?

            Because were speaking of salvation. You then brought up predestination (for reasons that remain obscure).

            Suddenly, without warning, you’re talking about interpretation. Yes, that’s very hard to understand!

          • Martin

            Albert

            Why do you think that something said by a believer applies to someone being saved?

            And if sola fide is false what is required in addition to faith?

          • Albert

            I don’t now know what your first question refers to, could you be a little more clear?

            And if sola fide is false what is required in addition to faith?

            Ultimately, love, for scripture says: For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is of any avail, but faith working through love, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
            If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Of course you know what it refers to.

            I see that once again you can’t be bothered to give a reference. Or is it that you imagine that failing to give a reference obscures the passage, as you did with that previous compound quote.

            For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love. Galations 5:6

            And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. 1 Corinthians 13:2-3

            Oh look, you’ve done it again. But you do realise what that Galatians passage means, It doesn’t mean that you have to have love for faith to work, it means that God’s gift of faith causes us to love Him and do works of love. So, as with James, you don’t understand the passages you quote.

          • Albert

            Of course you know what it refers to.

            As usual, you think you now better what I am thinking than I do. Is it any wonder you can’t interpret the scripture, when you are so sure you know, even in the face of evidence, what someone else is thinking?

            Or is it that you imagine that failing to give a reference obscures the passage

            No, it’s just that I expect someone who claims to be an Evangelical to know the scripture. It’s good to see you have started using Google to find the passages.

            But you do realise what that Galatians passage means, It doesn’t mean that you have to have love for faith to work, it means that God’s gift of faith causes us to love Him and do works of love. So, as with James, you don’t understand the passages you quote.

            No, it’s that you don’t understand is Catholic teaching, which is well expressed by what you’ve just said is the meaning of the scripture in question:

            It doesn’t mean that you have to have love for faith to work, it means that God’s gift of faith causes us to love Him and do works of love

            Which bit of that do you think I don’t believe?

          • Martin

            Albert

            I don’t know what you’re thinking but I suspect you of trying to pretend you don’t know what I’m referring to.

            After all, you have, on more than one occasion, merged two or more passages of Scripture without giving an indication of doing so.

            And you still haven’t told me what is required in addition to faith for a person to be saved.

          • Albert

            I don’t know what you’re thinking but I suspect you of trying to pretend you don’t know what I’m referring to.

            Yes, because from your position of sinlessness, you assume the worst in other people.

            I really do not know what you are referring to. If you look back at the the thread or even at my earlier post in which I quoted both of us, I find it extraordinary that you cannot see the lack of clarity in what you are talking about.

            After all, you have, on more than one occasion, merged two or more passages of Scripture without giving an indication of doing so.

            I have always given indication, unlike this writer:

            As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, “Behold, I send my messenger before thy face,
            who shall prepare thy way;
            the voice of one crying in the wilderness:
            Prepare the way of the Lord,
            make his paths straight — “

            And as for putting passages together, you will see it here:

            For to which of the angels did God ever say,

            “You are my Son;
            today I have become your Father”?
            Or again,

            “I will be his Father,
            and he will be my Son”?
            6 And again, when God brings his firstborn into the world, he says,

            “Let all God’s angels worship him.”
            7 In speaking of the angels he says,

            “He makes his angels spirits,
            and his servants flames of fire.”

            And if you look at Paul, you will see an incredible scatter gun approach in which scriptures from all over the place are brought together, as if they are next to each other in the original. That’s how theology works – if passages enlighten each other, we put them together. If you don’t like that practice, stop pretending to take the Bible seriously. It’s pretty obvious that you don’t know the scripture, from lots of facts like your unhappiness of the use of the word “proceeds” of the Holy Spirit, which just showed you were unaware of the most basic passage of scripture on the question. But what makes it worse is that you suspect me of something or other, for simply doing what scripture does.

            And you still haven’t told me what is required in addition to faith for a person to be saved.

            And now we come down to the reason you don’t know your Bible at all well. It’s the fact that you don’t seem to read anything. Here’s the post I gave only 2 above:

            “You: And if sola fide is false what is required in addition to faith?

            Me: Ultimately, love, for scripture says: For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is of any avail, but faith working through love, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

            Now may I suggest that instead trying to look biblical down here, you actually start testing what you are told about the Bible by your human tradition and your own gut instinct, against what the Bible actually says? Not how your human teachers tell you to explain away passages that directly refute what your human tradition says, but what the scripture actually says. Then try reading what Catholics actually teach. Not what your pastors tell you we teach, but what we say. After all, in your previous post, you gave, in interpretation of scriptures, a very good explanation of what Catholics teach – except of course, that from your pinnacle of ignorance, you thought you were refuting Catholicism. So you see, you’ve already given the game away. When you simply interpret scripture, you end up with Catholicism.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Ah, so now you are claiming that God gave you the right to mislead. Sadly you aren’t in a position to claim inspiration.

            I’m amused that you reuse the same fake quotation when I demolished that argument. I’m still waiting for you to tell me what is required in addition to that faith which is the gift of God. You do not seem to be able to give an argument against sola fide.

          • Albert

            Are you actually insane? I haven’t misled and I can’t for the life of me see where I have claimed divine permission to do so. You’re just unclear and too arrogant to admit that sometimes you might be unclear.

            I’m amused that you reuse the same fake quotation when I demolished that argument.

            Which fake quotation?

            I’m still waiting for you to tell me what is required in addition to that faith which is the gift of God.

            I’ve answered the question already – twice.

            You do not seem to be able to give an argument against sola fide.

            Yes, I can, and I repeatedly do. Firstly, it’s not in the Bible and therefore cannot be held by sola scriptura types, and secondly, it is contradicted, repeatedly by the Bible. What’s your argument in favour of it?

          • Martin

            Albert

            I’m still waiting for you to tell me what is required in addition to faith.

          • Albert

            No you’re not waiting – I’ve answered twice – Love.

          • Martin

            Albert

            And I demolished your answer.

            And so we, having been called through His will in Christ Jesus, are not
            justified through ourselves or through our own wisdom or understanding
            or piety or works which we wrought in holiness of heart
            , but through
            faith, whereby the Almighty God justified all men that have been from
            the beginning; to whom be the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

            Seems you and your sect are out of step.

          • Albert

            And I demolished your answer.

            No, you showed you didn’t understand my answer.

            As for your quotation from Clement, we’ve been through that before. What you don’t realise is that Clement’s teaching here is consistent with both our positions – thus his teaching is not clear in this quotation alone. When we read other passages of Clement, it is evident that your Protestant tradition is contrary to what he says.

            I say again and again and again. Why you do some proper theology and actually learn what we believe? Is it because you are afraid?

          • Martin

            Albert

            Oh yes, I understood your answer, indeed it was a sort of vague non answer that is used in an attempt to prevent the answerer being pinned down. The problem is that you know I will destroy any answer you give.

            Yes, Clement’s teaching is consistent with James and with Paul, from whom I take my position. Your position, however, is not consistent with any of them.

          • Albert

            Oh yes, I understood your answer

            This is very confusing. One minute you say I haven’t answered, the next you say I have.

            indeed it was a sort of vague non answer that is used in an attempt to prevent the answerer being pinned down.

            Really? That love is necessary to add to faith? Have you ever read the Bible? I even gave you the verses which prove this? When Paul speaks of love needing to be added to faith, is that just a vague non-answer designed to prevent him being pinned down?

            The problem is that you know I will destroy any answer you give.

            You are delusional!

            Yes, Clement’s teaching is consistent with James and with Paul, from whom I take my position. Your position, however, is not consistent with any of them.

            Please demonstrate how your position is consistent with all of Clement, all of James and all of Paul.

          • Martin

            Albert

            No, it’s not confusing in the slightest, you know precisely what I mean. And no one is deny that God places His love on those He saves, and that hence they are saved. Nor are they denying that with faith the believer loves God and does works that demonstrates he has faith. But this al arises in the believer from the faith that God gives.

            And of course, your only defence is to try to confuse the issue. Now you go further and speak of the whole of Clement, Paul and James. The trouble is, you haven’t shown me wrong yet.

            And I’m still waiting for you to tell me what is missing in sola fide.

          • Albert

            No, it’s not confusing in the slightest, you know precisely what I mean.

            Yes, you change your mind to suit the argument.

            And no one is deny that God places His love on those He saves, and that hence they are saved.

            I think you need a better understanding of the range of interpretation. You have a much more monochrome view of these issues than scripture. For example, you speak of “saved” as a static one off thing in accordance with your human tradition. But the Bible clearly sees “saved” as a dynamic thing, past, present and future. Now that openness of scripture, which your human tradition forecloses, enables all sorts of things to be part of the doctrine of salvation.

            But this al arises in the believer from the faith that God gives.

            That’s the point I keep telling you. Because your human tradition distorts even the logical possibilities, you don’t seem to see that that just is the Catholic position. Open yourself to the whole biblical teaching about salvation and you will see it.

            And of course, your only defence is to try to confuse the issue. Now you go further and speak of the whole of Clement, Paul and James. The trouble is, you haven’t shown me wrong yet.

            I have actually, it’s just you refuse to see it. I quoted Clement saying the very opposite of what you said and you neutralised the passage because it conflicted with your interpretation of one passage of Clement. I quote James which explicitly contradicts your Protestant teaching, and you just deny what he explicitly says. Even Luther knew that James opposed the Protestant understanding of the Gospel. I quote Paul and you say I am being vague. But these three agree, and their Gospel is not Protestant.

            And I’m still waiting for you to tell me what is missing in sola fide.

            I keep telling you, love.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You might want to demonstrate where I have changed my mind. Are you saying that God doesn’t love those He saves? I’m afraid it is Scripture your argument is with, not me. If I can neutralise the passage, it is that you didn’t understand what it said in the first place. And, of course, I neutralised your claim as to what James said by examining the whole passage. The gospel is the gospel, it isn’t Pretestant but biblical, and biblical is what I follow.

            Still waiting for you to tell me what is required in addition to sola fide.

          • Albert

            You might want to demonstrate where I have changed my mind.

            You spent ages saying I hadn’t answered, and then you let slip that you knew all along that I had.

            Are you saying that God doesn’t love those He saves?

            Of course not. The problem is with your concept of “saved”.

            If I can neutralise the passage, it is that you didn’t understand what it said in the first place.

            When James, for example says You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone that is not consistent with your position which is You see that a man is justified by faith alone and not by faith and works. You try to neutralise it by saying that works are sign of faith or follow from faith. But that follows as a matter of logical necessity from the James/Catholic position. So it can hardly be used to fault the Catholic position.

            Thus scripture explicitly refutes rebukes your human tradition, which is why the attempt to nullify the word of God with the sola scriptura innovation arises only in the 16th Century.

            Still waiting for you to tell me what is required in addition to sola fide.

            Can you explain to me why love is not an answer to that question?

          • Martin

            Albert

            You haven’t answered, your answer was a non answer.

            James is saying that works after salvation demonstrate that the faith is real. James is not saying that works are required for salvation. My position is validated by Scripture, including James.

            Still waiting for your answer.

          • Albert

            You haven’t answered, your answer was a non answer.

            So you think that love is nothing? When you know your Bible better, you will read that God is love. Presumably, you’ll think that means God is nothing.

            James is saying that works after salvation demonstrate that the faith is real.

            Agreed.

            James is not saying that works are required for salvation.

            Yes, he says so explicitly!

            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.

            We both agree that works follow from faith, and so on both systems, works demonstrate faith is real. Can you not see that we agree on that? The question is whether works are part of justification. Here James is explicit:

            Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar?
            ….
            You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone.

            You see, twice he says we are justified by works and once he says we are not justified by faith alone. But you say we are not justified by works but are justified by faith alone. You can’t nullify James by reference to the wider context, because the wider context is consistent with my position just as much as yours, so it doesn’t determine anything.

            Still waiting for your answer.

            So when I say love is necessary, because that is what the Bible says, you say that answer is non-answer. When I quote scripture to say works are necessary, because that is what the Bible says, you say that is non answer as well.

            What would constitute an answer in your sight?

          • Martin

            Albert

            I’ve addressed ‘love’, you’ve not given me any reason to change that.

            As I said “James is not saying that works are required for salvation”.

            Still waiting for your answer.

          • Albert

            That’s right, you said it was vague or meaningless, because you do not see that the saying “God is love” means love, far from being vague is in fact the basis of all that is.

          • Martin

            Albert

            I find it strange that your only argument against sola fide is this. After all, did not Trent decree “If any one saith, that the justice received is not preserved and also
            increased before God through good works; but that the said works are
            merely the fruits and signs of Justification obtained, but not a cause
            of the increase thereof; let him be anathema.”? Why is that not sufficient for you?

          • Albert

            What is so odd is that you don’t understand that that is the point I am defending. But then this whole argument is because you don’t understand the issues.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You’re not defending it very well. You’ve produced no evidence to support it.

          • Albert

            Given that you have taken it upon yourself to attack the Catholic position, I would have thought you would have already informed yourself of that position. But ignorance is bliss apparently. Now it may be I have explained it clearly enough to you, but that need not be evidence of my failure, it might be evidence of your failure to understand.

          • Martin

            Albert

            I’d have thought you’d present your case, unless, of course, you know your case doesn’t hold water.

          • Albert

            In view of the amount of detail I have given, both in explanation and in terms of scripture, that you actually believe what you’ve written there. I am sure that any impartial reader will share my doubts.

          • Albert

            Sorry, I forgot to reply to the rest of this. Firstly, I have given repeated replies, after all, it is hard to see how we can be having this discussion if I am not replying. Secondly, you say James is not saying that works are required for salvation. Except that that is exactly what James is saying – and he does so explicitly. As Luther understood perfectly well.

            Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar?

            and

            You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone.

            What do you understand by the meaning of the words “justified by”?

          • Martin

            Albert

            There you go again, ignoring most of the passage and accepting only part.

            But someone will say, You have faith and I have works. Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness—and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.
            (James 2:18-26 [ESV])

            That first verse is so important, yet you ignore it all the time. James is writing about showing faith, about the demonstration of faith to the world. He is talking about being justified before the world, not before God.

          • Albert

            Are you really not getting it? I keep pointing out that the first verse is consistent with both positions, yours and mine. It cannot therefore be used to contradict mine. However your doctrine together with the whole Protestant Reformation is clearly and repeatedly contradicted by verses 21 & 24. Thus the problem is not that I keep ignoring the rest of the passage. The problem is that you do.

            Now I finished my previous post by asking:

            What do you understand by the meaning of the words “justified by”?

            And you have ignored that question. Perhaps it’s because you realise that the moment you explain what those two words mean, your entire game is up. Not just this conversation, but your whole doctrine.

            But it’s not just James, the Catholic doctrine is all over scripture, once you take your distorting human tradition spectacles off. Consider this from Romans 8:

            For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, indeed it cannot; and those who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh, you are in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Any one who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

            That’s a pretty clear refutation of simul iustus et peccator, since Christians are here described as in the Spirit and thus not behaving as in the flesh. This is the same doctrine as we find in Galatians 5:

            But I say, walk by the Spirit, and do not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh; for these are opposed to each other, to prevent you from doing what you would. But if you are led by the Spirit you are not under the law. 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. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

            So, says Paul in Romans 8, in a neat statement of the Catholic position:

            for if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live.

            So you see, it is false to say we are justified and sinner at the same time. And this is obvious from even a cursory look at what scripture teaches about justification/righteousness (it perhaps isn’t obvious that these are the same word in Greek):

            For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Cor.5

            We are to become the righteousness of God. Now the righteousness of God is not merely a declaration, as if God is declared righteous while still being a sinner. Rather God is truly righteous, not only in declaration but in his very nature. Thus when we are called righteous in scripture it cannot mean forensic righteousness as the Protestants claim, but God’s righteousness infused into us.

            And this point is confirmed by Paul when he says in the same chapter:

            Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come.

            But the Protestant has not the faith to believe this, and holds that those in Christ are not really new, they are just the same old sinner, even while God declares what is not in fact the case, that they are righteous.

            The same point is made in a different way in Romans 5:

            If, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. Then as one man’s trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one man’s act of righteousness leads to acquittal and life for all men. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by one man’s obedience many will be made righteous. Law came in, to increase the trespass; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 5

            Now through Adam we aren’t just declared sinners, we actually are sinners. So by the parallelism of the passage, when it says many will be made righteous it must mean that we actually become righteous. And this must be the meaning of the text, for Paul’s point here and elsewhere in scripture is that the gift of God in Christ is greater than the sin of humanity pre-Christ:

            where sin increased, grace abounded all the more

            Now what all this means is that when scripture says we are justified, it means we really are righteous, otherwise the parallelism of the passage is destroyed, and the grace is actually less than the sin. We are good – by God’s free gift of grace. And this is why Paul is able to say

            each shall receive his wages according to his labour. For we are God’s fellow workers.

            And this is what we find expressed in 1 John:

            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;

            [So you can’t be justified and a sinner at the same time]

            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.

            “The same way in which he walked.” Thus the Christian cannot be a sinner and righteous at the same time for:

            He committed no sin; no guile was found on his lips. 1 Peter 2.

          • Martin

            Albert

            No, that first verse doesn’t support your position. As for God’s grace, you must add to it for it to be effectual. I accept God’s grace as being sufficient for salvation.

          • Albert

            Please explain how the first verses contradict my position.

            As for God’s grace, you must add to it for it to be effectual.

            No. Grace is effectual in bringing forth justification, which includes good works, because justification/righteousness means, in the Bible, actually being righteous, not simply being declared righteous while being unrighteous in fact. It goes without saying that you have not commented on this. In other words, in Catholic teaching, good works are not added to grace, they are the work of grace:

            Passage 1 I can do all things in him who strengthens me. Phil.4

            Passage 2 if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. Matt. 19

            Now God does not command what is impossible, and yet Jesus says:

            Passage 3 without me you can do nothing John 15

            So, we cannot do good works by ourselves (passage 3), but we can do good works by grace (passage 1 – although, to prevent any misunderstanding here, let me add Gal. 2: I no longer live, but Christ lives in me). And we must do such good works to enter life (passage 2 – although again, I would cite Gal.2 to prevent any misunderstanding).

            What is so hard about believing these scriptures? No one is adding to grace, we are merely proclaiming what scripture says, that grace is sufficient and effective to make righteous, as scripture says:

            For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by one man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

            Note we are made righteous by Christ, not simply declared righteous.

            It is also noteworthy, that you continue to avoid explaining what you think the Bible means by “justified by”.

            I accept God’s grace as being sufficient for salvation.

            Good. That position is de fide for Catholics.

          • Martin

            Albert

            The first verse shows that James is talking about showing faith to others, not gaining salvation.

            Remember, no one who is not saved can do anything good:

            as it is written:

            “None is righteous, no, not one;
            no one understands;
            no one seeks for God.
            All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
            no one does good,
            not even one.”
            “Their throat is an open grave;
            they use their tongues to deceive.”
            “The venom of asps is under their lips.”
            “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”
            “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
            in their paths are ruin and misery,
            and the way of peace they have not known.”
            “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
            Romans 3:10-18

            Therefore, if cooperating with God in salvation is a good deed, then God says no one ca do it.

            Therefore, to be made righteous, to be justified, to be saved, to be born again, requires an act of God with which you cannot cooperate.

          • len

            Albert , have you any connection with the legal profession?.
            You seem able to split hairs with consummate skill.
            Just asking.

          • Albert

            I have nothing to do with the legal profession, and I find it curious how many Protestants regard accuracy rather than sloppiness as a failing. Surely you can see I am just defending scripture.

            Is there just one priest? Yes, insofar as no one is a priest instead of Christ – but no one claims that. No insofar as the Bible plainly speaks of other people as priests, and they are to be understood as, in some sense ministering Christ’s priesthood.

            Thus the claim was either false or irrelevant. Nothing to do with the law, just scripture.

          • len

            Its your ability to twist things I suppose Albert?.
            Always a mark of a ‘good ‘ lawyer?.

          • Albert

            Are you disagreeing then that my post expresses scripture’s claims:

            1. There is no priesthood but Christ’s
            2. There are people called priests who in some sense exercise this priestly ministry of Christs

            Clarity is the opposite of twisting. It’s muddle that is twisted.

          • Anton

            We are all priests of God (Rev 1:6) and Christ is our High Priest (Hebrews 4).

            What you don’t find in scripture is a “laity” in the church.

          • Albert

            The concept is tacit.

          • Anton

            The concept arises out of the antiscriptural procedure of priestly ordination. Speaking of arguments from silence, have you noticed that not a single one of the NT letters is to “the priest of the congregation at”, and nor does the phrase occur anywhere?

          • Albert

            Your hostility arises from your anti-scriptural solas. I wouldn’t expect NT writings to be written “to the priest of the congregation at.”

          • Anna

            As I understand, there are 2 orders of priesthood in scripture – the Levitical and the order of Melchizedek. The purpose of the first is fulfilled, Christ having offered the perfect and final sacrifice. Hebrews makes it clear that there is no reason for Christ’s sacrifice to be repeated.

            In continuing to intercede before God for us, Christ is our High Priest of the order of Melchizedek, and the body of Christ constitutes the new universal ‘royal priesthood’ of this order, as Peter himself clarified, calling himself an ‘elder’, and not a ‘priest’. The ministers of the gospel are priests insofar as they belong to the ‘Universal Priesthood of Believers’, and to imply that their priesthood is somehow unique and different to that of other believers goes against what Peter himself – the ‘first pope’ – had to say on the subject.

            https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2016/10/the-priesthood-of-all-believers

          • Anna

            According to the scriptures, there are 2 orders of priesthood – the Levitical and the order of Melchizedek. The purpose of the first is fulfilled, Christ having offered the perfect and final sacrifice. Hebrews makes it clear that there is no reason for Christ’s sacrifice to be repeated.

            In continuing to intercede before God for us, Christ is our High Priest of the order of Melchizedek, and the body of Christ constitutes the new universal ‘royal priesthood’ of this order, as Peter himself clarified, calling himself an ‘elder’, and not a ‘priest’. The ministers of the gospel are priests insofar as they belong to the ‘Universal Priesthood of Believers’, and to imply that their priesthood is somehow unique and different to that of other believers goes against what Peter himself – the ‘first pope’ – had to say on the subject.

            https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2016/10/the-priesthood-of-all-believers

          • Albert

            Well here’s what St Paul says:

            because of the grace given me by God to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

            Now I suppose the passage could be taken in your sense, but it could also be taken in our sense. The big problem with discussing this point is that Protestants tend not to understand the Catholic teaching on this doctrine. What do you understand by Catholic teaching on the priesthood?

          • Anna

            The Roman Catholic priesthood, since you asked, is an attempt to amalgamate the role of the Christian minister (as defined by scripture) with the Aaronical priesthood – an artificial role, neither fish nor fowl. This distortion on its own might have been harmless, but upper echelons of the RCC hierarchy went further in presuming to take over role of Ceasar. After all ‘pontifex maximus’ was a title used by Roman emperors. The arrogance, high handedness, corruption and cruelty of some of the earlier popes show how far the distorted Roman ‘priesthood’ has departed from scriptural norms.

            An additional point- a group of monks or nuns living in a community has no basis in scripture, but one can see certain benefits when this celibacy is voluntarily chosen. However the celibacy imposed on all priests and nuns by the RCC is wrong and unnatural- its terrible consequences have brought disgrace to the Christian faith. According to Paul (1 Timothy 4:1-3) this teaching did not originate with the Spirit of God.

          • Albert

            The Roman Catholic priesthood, since you asked, is an attempt to amalgamate the role of the Christian minister (as defined by scripture) with the Aaronical priesthood – an artificial role, neither fish nor fowl.

            What is your evidence for this? This astonishing post actually fails to mention the central element in the Catholic priesthood at all. Does it not worry you that the religion your own religion was set up to protest against, is actually different from what you protest against? Who taught all this stuff about Catholicism? Is it lawful in Protestantism to bear false witness against your neighbour?

          • Anna

            You asked me what I understand by Catholic teaching on priesthood; based on my own observations, comments from Catholic priests and nuns I have known over the years, and the information I gathered from various RCC writings over the years, I gave you my answer. It would be proper for you to point out the bits you disagree with and state your reasons. I simply don’t understand all the outrage about the comment itself – how illogical!

          • Albert

            There’s no reference to the Eucharist, the cross or Christ’s priesthood. Instead of which you talked about Aaron and Caesar. You have completely misrepresented our faith in order to knock it down. Represent it fairly, and your comment will be moot. I find it odd that it isn’t obvious to you that if you misrepresent my faith for these purposes that my logical response would not be “outrage.”

          • Anna

            Kindly explain where I am wrong. To misrepresent your faith is not my intention – it is simply the way I understand it. I am certain many Catholics agree with many of these assertions, except that they do not see these as errors and often tend to dismiss the consequences as of no importance. I would think it is your role as a Roman Catholic to shed more light on such things, and so far you have not done so.

            There are RCC websites which suggest a continuity with the Aaronical priesthood, and even you mentioned that “the Bible plainly speaks of other people as priests”, could you be more specific what your meant?

            ‘Pontifex maximus’ was one of caesar’s titles; so how am I wrong? Do you deny that in the past the popes have set themselves much like earthly monarchs, sending people to war, ordering torture and executions, threatening to bar people from heaven and doing other things which are totally unchristian?

            As for the Eucharist, doesn’t the RCC belief that the priest is offering a sacrifice – when, according to scripture, Christ has offered final and perfect sacrifice – prove what I just said about the Aaronical priesthood. For the Christian, breaking bread is remembering Christ’s death, not repeating His sacrifice. The duties of priesthood under the new covenant include preaching the gospel and interceding for souls, not re-enacting Christ’s sacrifice.

            Last, do you disagree that priestly celibacy goes against Paul’s teachings (1 Timothy 4:1-3), and heeding Paul’s warning might have averted the child sex abuse scandals in the RCC?

          • Albert

            If you ask a Catholic why there are priests, he will say that it is because of the sacrifice of the Mass, which we understand to be a making present of the sacrifice of the cross. The priest therefore is a priest insofar as he has the priestly ministry of Christ conferred on him. He is not a priest in his own right, with his own sacrifice. Thus, if Catholic writings refer to Aaron at all, it would be as a prefiguring or type – in much the same way that the OT sacrifices prefigure the sacrifice of Christ. To pretend that the prefiguring is more important than the thing it prefigures as you do, shows a very superficial understanding of scripture, for since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices which are continually offered year after year, make perfect those who draw near.

            But you made this the centre-point of your critique, together with some unsubstantiated and ahistorical references to Caesar. So rather than actually doing the research you have been content to bear false witness. Sure, you may not have done that intentionally, but your ignorance is probably vincible and you should have checked before you wrote.

            “the Bible plainly speaks of other people as priests”

            Remember that I am answering a claim that there is only one priest. I have said that in one sense this is true – there is only one priest Christ. But clearly there are those who have some share in that priesthood:

            I have written to you very boldly by way of reminder, because of the grace given me by God to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

            To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

            There are other passages, but these are sufficient to prove the point.

            ‘Pontifex maximus’ was one of caesar’s titles; so how am I wrong?

            You’re wrong because that has no effect on the issue: the priesthood, which plainly has nothing to do with Caesar and no attempt to use such titles alters that. This is evident from the fact that Churches which are not in communion with the pope still have priests. Now what is so wrong with the title Pontifex maximus? It just means chief bridge-builder. Will you critique the Holy Spirit because scripture uses the title King of kings of Jesus, despite the fact that the origin of the title was in referring to pagan kings?

            Do you deny that in the past the popes have set themselves much like earthly monarchs, sending people to war, ordering torture and executions, threatening to bar people from heaven and doing other things which are totally unchristian?

            Of course I won’t deny that. The Church is made up of sinners and people who make mistakes. It is plainly anti-Christian to impugn the invalidity of a Christian body from the sinful nature of her members and leaders.

            As for the Eucharist, doesn’t the RCC belief that the priest is offering a sacrifice – when, according to scripture, Christ has offered final and perfect sacrifice – prove what I just said about the Aaronical priesthood.

            Anna please read what I am saying. The Eucharist is the sacrifice of Christ on the cross, it is not another sacrifice or in addition to it, and therefore the Mass does in no way undermine the finality and perfection of the cross on the contrary, it proclaims it as scripture says. It is a making present of that victory. I accept that you might disagree with that, but please, until you have at least understood the doctrine, please stop bearing false witness against us.

            Last, do you disagree that priestly celibacy goes against Paul’s teachings (1 Timothy 4:1-3)

            We can talk about 1 Tim.4.1-3 if you like, but I would point out that Paul was himself celibate and Jesus plainly exalted celibacy. But while we’re on 1 Tim does your congregation enrol widows who pledge celibacy as 1 Tim.5 says? Or is scripture just a weapon you try to use against other people while hypocritically not following it yourself?

            heeding Paul’s warning might have averted the child sex abuse scandals in the RCC?

            Really, how? Do you think that the Catholic Church has had more child abuse proportional to its size and contact with children than other institutions? What’s your evidence for that? And what is your evidence that celibacy is part of the problem? Do you have single friends? Are they paedophiles because they are celibate?

            Remember the scripture:

            You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.

            Even if you regard Catholics as your enemy, Jesus makes it clear that we are still your neighbours.

          • Anna

            “Thus, if Catholic writings refer to Aaron at all, it would be as a prefiguring or type – in much the same way that the OT sacrifices prefigure the sacrifice of Christ…”

            Some of the points you make are familiar to me because of my former Orthodox background. About your point about the ‘sacrifice of the Mass’ and its ‘prefiguring the ‘sacrifice of Christ’ – the OT sacrifices indeed were a prefiguring of the sacrifice of Christ because they ‘preceded’ the latter. Once Christ’s perfect work on the cross was accomplished, what need is there for any further sacrifice to ‘prefigure’ or foreshadow this fulfilled work or for a priest to perform sacrifices? Early Christians gathered together – mostly in their own homes – to break bread and so remember Christ’s sacrifice. None of the apostles performed Mass in the manner of the RCC priest.

            When Paul speaks of his priestly duty, he is clear that he means the preaching of the good news, which we are also called to do. Peter writes that as a royal priesthood, we are called “to declare the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into His marvellous light”. Christ never was a priest of the imperfect order of Aaron, as Hebrews make clear, He is the sacrificial Lamb of God. He is now a High Priest of the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 7:11-14). During His earthly life, Christ “offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears” (Hebrews 5:7), and He continues to fulfil the high priestly roles of Advocate and Intercessor. Again as part of royal priesthood, we are called to enter the Most Holy Place (Hebrews 10:18-29), and to share in Christ’s ministry of intercession.

            “But you made this the centre-point of your critique, together with some unsubstantiated and ahistorical references to Caesar.”

            The role of the Bishop of Rome had metamorphosed into something akin to the role of emperor. Did the pope not wield political authority over the princes of Europe, and treat them as his vassals? Martin Luther wrote at length about the corruption of the popes in this regard. Pope Alexander VI even ‘allotted’ the non-Christian parts of the globe into east and west – the former to be colonised by Portugal, and the latter by Spain. Which of this is unsubstantiated or ahistorical? So as pontifex maximus, which was actually the title of the high priest of the College of Pontiffs in ancient Rome, and later taken by a Caesar Augustus for himself, the pope was not merely an innocent ‘bridge builder’; far from it, for the first split in the church was caused by the Roman bishop’s wish to hold honours, privileges and authority beyond those which the Bible permitted any bishop to hold. Please look up Wikipedia on this topic. In contrast, Peter, ‘the first pope’ refused to interfere even in the distribution of funds within the church, for he reminded the disciples that by this they would be neglecting their ministry of prayer and preaching of the word (Acts 6:1-4).

            Coming to priestly celibacy, Paul was clear that this is a gift given to some among us, and it is never to be imposed – its dangers are now obvious. How many souls have been endangered by this practice? The other apostles were married men. What right does any church have to disregard Paul’s teaching and ‘church tradition’ as practised by the apostles? The Orthodox church has both married and unmarried priests, which I find more practical, because each one can decide for himself whether he has the gift of celibacy or not.

            “It is plainly anti-Christian to impugn the invalidity of a Christian body from the sinful nature of her members and leaders.”

            When certain protestant denominations now allow gay marriage, do we not unhesitatingly label them as apostate churches, which have departed from the truth and purity of the faith? Why do you use a different yardstick when it comes to the failings of the RCC? Christ has clearly warned us that ‘by their fruits, you shall know them’; so I make no apologies for obeying Jesus, for in His words alone do we have safety. Catholics are not permitted to do so, because you are taught that the pope is infallible, and so you fear to test his teaching against the scriptures as the Berean Jews did with Paul’s teaching (Acts 17:11, notice how they are called noble, and not criticised for examining scriptures for themselves).

            “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour. Even if you regard Catholics as your enemy…”

            Where did I bear false witness? It’s a terrible and unfair accusation. I rarely have time to write such long posts, but I felt it necessary to clarify my perspective. I do not regard the Catholics as my enemy. I studied briefly in a Catholic school, and later worked in 2 Catholic hospitals. Some of my close friends are nuns; I truly love them, and see them as being very sincere in their beliefs. I rarely debate these matters with them, except in the mildest possible manner, because I do not wish to hurt their feelings. In your case – and also with Happy Jack – I imagined you were made of sterner stuff, for you tend to ‘jump in’ and be rather vigorous in your criticism of protestant beliefs. I see nothing wrong in your doing so, for anyone who sincerely believes something should be willing to defend it. Do you consider Protestants as your enemy because you criticise us on this blog? I am sure you do not. Neither do I dislike the Catholics, just because i disagree with some of your beliefs.

            That said, I have a problem with the RCC because of its false beliefs and corrupt history; although it is now a relatively benign institution, I believe, as many of the reformers did, that in the end times it will yield – or at least align with – the Anti Christ, as indeed will many of the current apostate protestant churches. I see many advantages in the way the RCC is governed, but while you stray outside the scriptures, there is much potential for harm especially in the days ahead, for this vast and highly organised governmental structure could become an effective tool for evil, just as in the days of the mediaeval popes.

          • Albert

            About your point about the ‘sacrifice of the Mass’ and its ‘prefiguring the ‘sacrifice of Christ’ – the OT sacrifices indeed were a prefiguring of the sacrifice of Christ because they ‘preceded’ the latter. Once Christ’s perfect work on the cross was accomplished, what need is there for any further sacrifice to ‘prefigure’ or foreshadow this fulfilled work or for a priest to perform sacrifices?

            I don’t think you understand the point being made either in scripture or in Catholicism. It is not us who say that the priesthood is Aaron’s priesthood – it is you who made that connection (or something like it). We say that the present priesthood is prefigured by Aaron’s priesthood, just as the cross is prefigured by the OT sacrifices. The purpose of the Mass is to make that victory present, not to add to it as if Christ’s grace is insufficient.

            When Paul speaks of his priestly duty, he is clear that he means the preaching of the good news, which we are also called to do.

            That’s not at all clear to me – the text does not say that. But again, my point is simply to say that the NT does have some use for the word “priest” beyond the person of Christ.

            The role of the Bishop of Rome had metamorphosed into something akin to the role of emperor.

            I’ve answered this point already. Firstly, it’s irrelevant because the papacy and the priesthood are not the same thing, thus critiques of the papacy do not equate to critiques of the priesthood. Secondly, you seem not to be aware that the office of Peter is clearly witnessed in the Church prior to the conversion of the Empire. Having said all that, I do not need to defend every act of the papacy for 2000 years as you seem to think that I do.

            Coming to priestly celibacy, Paul was clear that this is a gift given to some among us, and it is never to be imposed – the dangers are now obvious.

            Celibacy is not imposed on everyone. What are the dangers?

            The other apostles were married men. What right does any church have to disregard Paul’s teaching and ‘church tradition’ as practised by the apostles?

            I do not need to defend celibacy because it is discipline and not dogma. But if you ask for the right I would point out the words of Jesus “Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven.” The NT clearly values the papacy. Does your community only allow male ministers and if so, does it require that they be married and then only to one wife (i.e. they exclude single, divorced and widowed and remarried men)?

            When certain protestant denominations now allow gay marriage, do we not unhesitatingly label them as apostate churches, which have departed from the truth and purity of the faith? Why do you use a different yardstick when it comes to the failings of the RCC?

            You are confusing two entirely different things. To accept same-sex “marriage” is the change the Church’s doctrine on marriage which comes from Christ. That is entirely different from a minister being sinful. Surely you can see the difference? Are there no sinners in your community?

            so I make no apologies for obeying Jesus, for in His words alone do we have safety. Catholics are not permitted to do so, because you are taught that the pope is infallible

            How did your prejudice get so deep? That is an outrageous comment. When the pope speaks infallibly (which he rarely does) we regard it as Jesus confirming the faith he revealed once for all (Lk.22.32).

            so you fear to test his teaching against the scriptures as the Berean Jews did with Paul’s teaching (Acts 17:11, notice how they are called noble, and not criticised for examining scriptures for themselves).

            That’s ridiculous. If you look at my posts, I am perfectly capable of testing doctrines by the scriptures. I reject Protestantism because its doctrines, especially the solas, are explicitly contrary to scripture. However, I do not regard my interpretation of scripture as being on the same level as scripture itself, as you Protestants do. Scripture warns against this. Thus I test things against scripture, but I check my interpretation of scripture against the Church’s interpretation of scripture.

            Now you offer a very superficial reading of Acts 17:

            Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessaloni’ca, for they received the word with all eagerness, examining the scriptures daily to see if these things were so. Many of them therefore believed, with not a few Greek women of high standing as well as men. But when the Jews of Thessaloni’ca learned that the word of God was proclaimed by Paul at Beroe’a also, they came there too, stirring up and inciting the crowds.

            Notice a few things, they are described as more than those in Thessalonica – i.e. they were better than a bunch of people who out of jealousy stirred up a crowd to reject the apostles. That’s not a high standard. Yes, they receive the word with all eagerness, but this is not the same thing as faith, because not all believe. Rather they show interest.
            Secondly, the don’t believe the message as Paul on the authority of the message and messengers themselves, but on the basis of their own private judgement. And this scripture and private judgement method is exposed here as inadequate, for only some of them believe and they are sufficiently flaky that when the Thessalonians come it all becomes more complicated. Besides, these Jews are only testing the Gospel against the OT, which is surely not something that any Protestant would recommend! This is surely not a model for our response to the apostles’ preaching?

            Where did I bear false witness? It’s a terrible and unfair accusation.

            No it is an entirely truthful accusation – although I do not impugn deliberate deceit. Your description of the priesthood was totally unfair and would never be drawn from any Catholic source.

            In your case – and also with Happy Jack – I imagined you were made of sterner stuff, for you tend to ‘jump in’ and be rather vigorous in your criticism of protestant beliefs.

            Don’t think I am critiquing you because I am offended (not made of sterner stuff), I am critiquing you because, as St Paul says of St Peter, you stand condemned for misrepresenting our faith.

            Do you consider Protestants as your enemy because you criticise us on this blog?

            It is not your criticism of us that I am objecting to, sometimes we need to be critiqued – I would have thought that is obvious because some of your critiques I have accepted. It is your misrepresentation of our teaching that I am objecting to. It is the fact that you speak without taking the trouble to ensure that what you say is true and fair. The fact is, that your critique of our priesthood collapses once your misrepresentation is corrected.

            That said, I have a problem with the RCC because of its false beliefs and corrupt history

            As judged from a perspective which, according to scripture has no authority, rather, we are warned against. Do you not realise that I could say the exact same sentence of Protestantism? I think it is pretty obvious, simply from examples that we can agree upon (e.g. same sex marriage) that the make up of Protestantism is the thing that lets the devil in.

          • Anna

            Albert, I doubt we will get anywhere with this discussion, but I will clarify a few points –

            1.”To accept same-sex “marriage” is to change the Church’s doctrine on marriage which comes from Christ. That is entirely different from a minister being sinful…”

            I was not talking only about ministers being sinful. I meant the unscriptural practices in the RCC – idolatry, veneration of saints, and others which we have discussed in the past. These things are accepted unquestioningly by Catholics. Although I know many former Catholics who are very aware of the dangers.

            2. “Celibacy is not imposed on anyone. What are the dangers?”

            It is imposed on priests and nuns. Sexual immorality – in certain South American countries priests were known to have mistresses and now the scandal of child sex abuse. Think of all the children who turn away from the gospel as a result – I find it strange that you can remain unmoved by this.

            3. Coming to divorce, the churches I have attended over the years do not agree with divorce, and permit remarriage only in very rare cases. The present laxity among Christians is considered wrong, but in situations of sexual immorality or domestic violence, it is permitted.

            4. That’s not at all clear to me – the text does not say that.

            “He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:16).

            Thanks, for the discussion. I wish you well.

          • Albert

            I was not talking only about ministers being sinful. I meant the unscriptural practices in the RCC – idolatry, veneration of saints,

            The examples you gave originally were all to do with sin or policy, not to do with matters of faith, and the distinction is key. The things you now raise I either say we do not do or I deny they are contrary to God’s revelation in Christ. The fact that you regard something as unscriptural is evidence only that you do not find it scriptural. It is not evidence that it is unscriptural.

            It is imposed on priests and nuns.

            No it isn’t. They freely choose it.

            Sexual immorality – in certain South American countries priests were known to have mistresses

            Which would be a risk of anyone being celibate – yet scripture commends celibacy.

            and now the scandal of child sex abuse

            You seem to think that celibacy is a cause of child sex abuse. You have provided no evidence for this – it’s just a nasty assertion, at the moment. I would point out that the view that sex abuse is linked with celibacy puts children at risk because it has meant other groups have assumed they don’t have the problem. The CofE was miles behind the Catholic Church in dealing with this problem until very recently, and children were abused as a result. But again, instead of misrepresenting a Church you do not like, why not produce the evidence if you think celibacy is part of the problem?

            the churches I have attended over the years do not agree with divorce, and permit remarriage only in very rare cases. The present laxity among Christians is considered wrong, but in situations of sexual immorality or domestic violence, it is permitted.

            So you permit adultery, contrary to the plain teaching of scripture.

            “He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:16).

            The translation you offer is tenuous in my view and even then does not exclude my reading of the passage which links “priestly” not simply to the Gospel, but to the offering of the Gentiles (my offering). A Catholic priest is a priest of the Gospel.

            I’m still left wondering about widows in your community.

            I wish you well. And I you, and I hope you won’t misrepresent us again.

          • Anton

            It is clear that you understand Roman Catholicism very well and it is an empty rhetorical trick for Catholics to suggest that you are misrepresenting it.

          • Anna

            Thank you. Very kind of you to say that – I did wonder if I was being overly critical.

          • carl jacobs

            Which kind of proves Leo’s point.

            I don’t dispute that said orders are “absolutely null and utterly void” according to the RCC. What is in dispute is whether Leo’s point has any actual significance outside the confines of the RCC.

          • Albert

            A point I answered by pointing out the response of the Anglican Archbishops. It also has significance for some Anglicans who worry about the validity of Anglican orders. And it has siognificance for the whole Anglican communion insofar as they are committed to union with Catholicism.

          • carl jacobs

            It also has significance for some Anglicans who worry about the validity of Anglican orders.

            Well, OK. You have a point. The opinion of the Pope can be important to those who grant significance to his opinion. The important qualification is that this significance is not intrinsic but must be conferred. To be honest, I have always thought of Anglo-Catholicism as an inconsistent subspecies of Catholicism anyways. One can’t actually be half-Catholic.

            And it has siognificance for the whole Anglican communion insofar as they are committed to union with Catholicism.

            I’m committed to union with Rome, Albert. It’s just that I have conditions for unity. Rather like Rome has conditions. There are far more significant barriers to union than the validity of priestly orders.

          • Albert

            To be honest, I have always thought of Anglo-Catholicism as an inconsistent subspecies of Catholicism anyways. One can’t actually be half-Catholic.

            Quite

            I’m committed to union with Rome, Albert. It’s just that I have conditions for unity. Rather like Rome has conditions. There are far more significant barriers to union than the validity of priestly orders.

            Agreed, but if that does not stop it being a significant barrier for Anglicans.

            Thus there are two ways in which the Pope’s teaching on Anglican orders are significant for non-Catholics.

          • carl jacobs

            Agreed, but … that does not stop it being a significant barrier for Anglicans.

            I think it does. Concern about priestly orders is derivative. It depends entirely upon the existence of the other more significant areas of disagreement.

          • Albert

            Agreement, sure? You only worry about valid priests if you think a Church should have valid priests. The CofE does think that’s important, ergo.

          • carl jacobs

            If the CoE actually concerned itself with Rome’s opinion, there wouldn’t be any priests in the CoE because the CoE would have placed itself back under the suzerainty of Rome. The CoE clearly acts upon its own assertion that its orders are valid. To do otherwise would be to grant Rome a primacy of position that Rome does not possess. The validity of orders within the CoE is in no way dependent upon the opinion of Pope Leo or any other Roman pontiff.

          • Albert

            All of this may seem reasonable, but if it is actually true, why did the Archbishops defend their orders against Rome?

          • carl jacobs

            It’s not just reasonable. It’s self-evidently true – as can be seen every Sunday in every Anglican church that conducts a service without Papal approval.

            why did the Archbishops defend their orders against Rome?

            Why do I argue with you? Arguing with someone does not mean you have implicitly granted authority to the opponent. Rome has no authority over me. Do you think I concern myself when (for example) Jack tells me I am not validly married (or whatever the correct Canon law term is?) It doesn’t bother me in the least, but I’ll still argue about it. Why? To establish the grounds of right authority.

            Truth is worth the defense.

          • Albert

            It’s self-evidently true – as can be seen every Sunday in every Anglican church that conducts a service without Papal approval.

            Carl, you labour under the misapprehension that everyone acts reasonably all of the time. But the evidence is that no-one acts reasonably all of the time. There are Anglicans, called Anglo-papalists, who accept the whole of Catholic teaching, except on Anglicans orders (and even then, that is usually because they think validity came back in through Old Catholic co-ordinations). Now that makes no sense. But these people exist.

            Why do I argue with you? Arguing with someone does not mean you have implicitly granted authority to the opponent. Rome has no authority over me…Truth is worth the defense.

            Quite. So the fact that Rome denies Anglican orders is of significance to Anglicans and therefore your original statement who besides the RCC cares about it? is wrong. Firstly, there are Anglicans who (not very coherently) think it matters that Rome does not accept Anglican orders and secondly, there are Anglicans who care because they want unity with Rome (again, not a terribly coherent bunch) and finally, there are Anglicans who care because they believe Rome’s position is untrue and they therefore wish to defend what they think is true.

            When I was in the CofE, Rome’s position on Anglican orders could wind certain people up more than any other topic. You forget that for some Anglicans the authority of Rome hangs over them. The fact that you and I think that makes little sense doesn’t stop it being a fact.

    • Anton

      Priestly ordination simply makes someone what they already are according to Rev 1:6 and 1 Peter 2:9, so questions of validity bandied about between rival denominations are farcical. Nevertheless the Anglican response to Apostolicae Curae, namely Saepius Officio, was generally acknowledged to have been written in rather better Latin and turned the argument used by Rome against itself.

      • “Nevertheless the Anglican response to Apostolicae Curae, namely Saepius Officio, was generally acknowledged to have been written in rather better Latin and turned the argument used by Rome against itself.

        Care to substantiate that claim.

        • Anton

          No. Go do the work yourself. That’s been your response to me often enough in similar circumstances.

          • So, Jack concludes, you don’t actually know the arguments.

          • Anton

            So, Anton concludes, your use of this response in the past was illegitimate by your own standards.

            I was told it by a man I know well, fluent in Latin and interested in church history, who worships in an Orthodox church.

          • Hearsay, then.

          • Anton

            Go do the work yourself. That’s been your response to me often enough in similar circumstances.

          • Jack knows the arguments – unlike you.

          • Anton

            So you don’t like your own argument when it’s used against you?

            What do you understand by the word “hypocrisy”?

          • You repeatedly throw out accusations without actually understanding that which you attack. It’s not hypocritical to call you out on this.

          • Anton

            It’s hypocrisy to grumble when I say “check out my claim yourself” given that you have said it to me often enough.

            Please note that I don’t usually do that. I’m teaching you a lesson. And it’s obviously working, because you don’t like it.

            You are fluent in Latin, fluent enough to understand the difference between good and bad written style in an extended document in it? If not then you too are dependent on somebody else’s opinion.

          • len

            Jack is infallible?.

          • IrenaSerena1984

            The arguments are amply supplied by schismatics of your own in the SSPX. The problem for you is twofold: firstly, as Saepius Officio shows, the supposed “deficiencies” of the Edwardian ordination rite that invalidate Anglican orders are the same “deficiencies” contained in early church rites (the very rites used in the ordinations through which RC’s trace their orders); secondly, your Novus Ordo rite contains precisely the “deficiencies” that the papal bull condemns (making your orders invalid by the standard of your own bull, as SSPX are so fond to point out).

          • The SSPX accept the validity of Catholic orders and also that the Novus Ordo Mass consecrates and transforms the bread and wine into Christ’s Body and Blood. They criticise the New Rite but not the validity of the Mass in itself. They regard it as deficient for enacting this Sacrifice, not invalid. As Archbishop Lefebvre stated: “The Novus Ordo Missae, even when said with piety and respect for the liturgical rules … is impregnated with the spirit of Protestantism. It bears within it a poison harmful to the faith.” These defects do not mean the Novus Ordo Mass is invalid. Only three things are required for validity – proper matter, form, and intention. What they argue is that the Novus Ordo rite will no longer in and of itself guarantee that the celebrant has the correct intention. as this will depend on his personal faith.

            Anglican orders are invalid because the Anglican rite removed every reference to sacrifice and true priesthood in the traditional liturgy of ordination. The absence of such explicit language in a later rite formed by pruning the received rite is not the same thing as the possible absence of such language in the most primitive Catholic formulas of ordination. It cannot be argued that Anglican orders are just as valid as orders conferred in the early church because deliberately cutting out received references to sacrifice gave the Anglican ordination formulas a signification different from the signification of ancient liturgies in which sacrificial references surrounding the laying on of hands make it clear that a sacrificing priest is being “made” by the decisive words.

            It is the deliberate and intended anti-sacerdotal and anti-sacrificial character of Anglican orders that render them the pseudo-ordinations.

          • IrenaSerena1984

            Many an unfounded assertion there. Most notable is your assumption that ancient ordination rites intend to make sacrificing priests, from which you then spring to a defect in Anglican intent. First prove the premise; then we can talk about whether the Church of England “pruned a received rite”, or whether others added unjustifiable dross.

            As for matter, form and intention… SSPX plainly argue for a defect in form in Novus Ordo which, coupled with heterodox bishops who lack intention, leads to ordinations that lack moral certainty. Hence their common practice to conditionally ordain priests orainded in the post-Conciliar Church. From Pope Pius’ perspective, the form of the NO is “inadequate” in the same way that the Edwardian ordinal was.

            Now, what the SSPX think is neither here nor there to me (as is what RC’s think of our orders). But they do highlight the rather silly double standard in your Church’s approach to ordination rites.

    • Martin

      HJ

      No ecclesiastical orders are valid, least of all those of Rome who set themselves up as an authority, as schismatic act, and then allowed immoral men to hold rule. There clearly is no such thing as apostolic succession in Rome.

      • You don’t believe in any form of ordination, Martin, so this debate is pointless.

        • Anton

          You are a saint and a priest, Jack.

          • Yes, just like the Jews who were priests but not High Priests. Jack is not a sacerdotal priest with the power to change bread and wine into Christ’s Body and Blood, nor can he forgive sin.

          • Anton

            Nobody on earth has that power.

          • In persona Christi.

          • Anton

            Christ is not someone who can be summoned at will by an ordained Roman Catholic regardless of the latter’s character.

          • Christ gave the power to priests to transform the substance of bread and wine into His Body and Blood. It’s His freely given gift.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Show me where priests were appointed in the NT Church.

          • Anton

            Tell Aquinas. He argued that if matter was not indefinitely divisible then transubstantiation was false. Atomic theory therefore repudiates the doctrine.

          • Aquinas wasn’t infallible. However one describes it, the fact is that physical matter is miraculously transformed into the spiritualised and risen Body and Blood of Christ under the appearance of bread of wine.

          • Anton

            You’re not infallible either but I’d rather believe Aquinas than you.

          • You’d do well to do so.

          • Anton

            That’s why I don’t believe in transubstantiation.

          • You don’t believe it possible for God to change bread and wine into the risen, spiritualised Body and Blood of Christ? What does science say about the risen Christ’s body walking through doors and walls?

          • Anton

            Change of subject. Science speaks of the matter of the current creation. As did Aquinas when he argued that if matter was not indefinitely divisible then transubstantiation could not be true. (He believed it was indefinitely divisible, of course.) Take it up with him, not me.

          • So “scientifically” he may have been wrong in seeking to offer a philosophical explanation for the miracle that is the Eucharist. So what? Jack cannot see how this disproves the change of substance of the bread and wine into Christ’s Body and Blood. And the point Jack made is relevant as neither science nor philosophy can explain the qualities Jesus’ risen, spiritualised body. The Eucharist is not “matter of the current creation”(it is Christ’s Body and Blood under the appearance of matter) anymore than manna was.

            The Council of Trent summarised the Catholic faith by declaring: “Because Christ our Redeemer said that it was truly his body that he was offering under the species of bread, it has always been the conviction of the Church of God, and this holy Council now declares again, that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation.” (CCC, 1376)

          • Anton

            If you disagree with Aquinas’ argument that transubstantiation necessarily required indefinite divisibility of matter (now known to be false), please explain where you consider Aquinas to be in error.

          • Jack doesn’t have to as transubstantiation doesn’t rest on science.

          • Anton

            You mean “Jack doesn’t have to as thankfully this isn’t the Inquisition and the fact that Aquinas has me cold doesn’t matter to my wellbeing”. Your failure to respond says plenty though

          • Cressida de Nova

            Saint Thomas Aquinas did not deny transubstantiation existed. Catholic Theologians attest to this. Summa Theologia is very difficult reading. Mysteries of religion can never be unravelled by science. You as a scientist will probably never be able to come to terms with the concept of mystery of religion. Mysteries of religion do not have a solution. This spiritual dimension of thinking and acceptance will always elude you because if you do not understand something or have no proof of it…you are unable to acknowledge its existence.This is a characteristic of your profession…arrogance…a cross you must bear, if you like.The Catholic Church would never have canonised a saint who did not believed in the Eucharist. Albert and Jack have pointed out the passage from the New Testament several times on this blog which irrefutably makes the case for transubstantiation.

          • Anton

            You misunderstand me; how Christ is fully God and fully man, and how God is triune, are mysteries that I revel in.

          • Manfarang

            Cannibalism!

          • Martin

            HJ

            Just think, one of your priests could be a heretic, become an Anglican and still call down Christ from Heaven in order to change the bread and wine.

            That’s if John O’Brien’s Faith of Millions is to be believed.

          • He could if he had been validly ordained and had the intent to do so.

          • Martin

            HJ

            How could anyone know, considering there is no obvious change in the bread and wine, that is if you discount bees worshipping it in a hive.

            What evidence do you have that Rome still has apostolic succession?

          • For a Catholic, matter, form and intention are essential for validity of the Mass. If any of these three is lacking, the Sacrament is not effected.

            “The one who confers a sacrament must truly intend to confer it. He must employ the determinate matter or sign. He must mean the words [the form] which make the sign sacramentally significant. If the intention of the minister [that is, the person who administers the sacrament] is amiss, the sacrament is not validly conferred.” (Msgr. Paul J. Glenn, A Tour of the Summa)

            When meeting a new priest, Jack always asks his views and if he believes in Transubstantiation.

          • Martin

            HJ

            But how do you know that the bread and wine have changed? Belief is insufficient.

          • Belief is insufficient?! Strange comment from a professing Christian.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Have you not read the epistle of James?

          • Albert

            Credo quidquid dixit Dei Filius: nil hoc verbo Veritatis verius.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Ah, the heathen language of the Pontifex Maximus

          • carl jacobs

            There are no heathen languages.

          • Martin

            Carl

            But there is a language used by the heathen.

          • Albert

            A language which, it would appear, the apostles were able to speak by the power of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost.

          • Martin

            Albert

            And plenty of other languages in that context, but I’ve no doubt that the dominant language in the Church of that day was not Latin, just as being called Pontifex Maximus would have been an insult to a Christian.

          • Albert

            Your comment was about Latin. And it exposed your lack of knowledge of scripture.

          • Martin

            Albert

            My comment was about Latin and the heathen who adopted it as their official language. There was no lack of knowledge on my part revealed.

          • Albert

            What was the point of your comment then?

          • Martin

            Albert

            The use of Latin by the heathen. Greek, after all, is the language of the New Testament, not Latin. What was the point of your use of Latin?

          • Albert

            The fact that my quotation was originally written in Latin…

          • Cressida de Nova

            If a Catholic priest does not believe in transubstantiation he most likely never did, so his ordination is invalid as well. He can fool everyone but he cannot fool God.It is terrible that you feel you need to ask this question. Transubstantiation is the crux of our religion.If a few priests do not believe in it, they should remove themselves or be removed from office.

          • len

            No really the job of a Priest to dabble in the occult black arts?.

            Unless they are Satanist of course?

            I refer of course to’ transubstantiation’

          • Merchantman

            So what is your legal position in the Catholic Church? You have obviously an unusually deep understanding of Catholic doctrine. Just trying to understand.

          • Jack is an ordinary Catholic with no special status or standing.

          • Cressida de Nova

            But with more understanding of the finer points of theology and Catholic doctrine than the lay person or sadly even some priests.

          • len

            No miracles then?

    • len

      The position of Pope is heretical in itself.

      • Inspector General

        One was hoping you were none other than Cat-weasel…he’s no longer with us.

        • len

          Hello Inspector.,
          The cyber Swiss home guard is forming I see..

          • Merchantman

            This Swiss guard thingy shows the cunning of the papacy. A bit of use a poacher to catch a poacher sort of thing.

          • len

            The Papacy are very cunning, as is the Catholic religion.
            As J Macarthur says in his summing up ‘Popes and the Papacy’

            ‘Oh, they’ve got a clever system. How to preserve error, how to
            perpetuate error, make heresy infallible and the arch heretic
            unassailable, irreformable and absolutely authoritative. It is possible
            that the final antichrist could be a pope because the final antichrist
            will be a dominating world leader. He will be not subject to any other
            world leader. He will be in an imitation of Christ, an antichrist, a
            pseudochrist. He will have international power. He will be a gentile.
            And his system seems, in the Book of Revelation chapter 17, to be
            headed up in Rome.’

    • IanCad

      And, to add to your first paragraph, stated again in 2000 by Pope John Paul 11 in his Declaration – Dominus Iesus.

    • Hi

      Sorry , but to my mind and whilst I get the bottom line about Anglican and Roman vicars , the middle paragraph is to me seems incomprehensible gobbledygook and makes no sense whatsoever.

      • It means, in simple terms, that some validly ordained priests and bishops who left the Catholic Church and Orthodox Church, validly ordained Anglican clerics.

  • Dominic Stockford

    CESA are a jolly good bunch who have stayed true to the Reformed faith. This move is an excellent one. And it is their business, they need neither the permission of, nor to inform, other denominations or groupings. Get over your CofE self-centredness, and embrace the hope that this is for British anglicans.

    • Charitas Lydia

      Hear! Hear!

    • vsscoles

      It is dishonest for Mr Pryke and his Church to continue in the Church of England and at the same time to switch their allegiance to an overseas denomination which does not belong to the Anglican Communion. The honourable thing would have been to leave the Church of England first.

      • Dominic Stockford

        Their allegiance belongs to Christ, not to any human institution.

        • Arden Forester

          The Church is not a human institution. Where did this notion come from?

        • vsscoles

          The parish still belongs to the Church of England and its clergy have sworn an oath of canonical obedience to their bishop. If they have changed their minds then they should have the courage to leave, not to equivocate.

  • Martin

    Andrew

    Is it somewhere near Matthew 23:9?

    You know, where we are told to call no man Father.

    • Andrew Price

      I think you might have it.

  • Does sola scriptura and the right of a Protestant to interpret scripture according to his personal conscience and direct guidance by the Holy Spirit, permit accussations of heresy?

    • carl jacobs

      Of course not. We need an infallible interpreter whom we will identify by … personal conscience and direct guidance by the Holy Spirit.

      Hrmmm.

      • So the concepts of heresy and apostasy do not exist amongst protestants.

        • carl jacobs

          Irony is lost upon you, Grasshopper.

          • Learn the difference between irony and sarcasm, Grasshopper.

          • Albert

            I think that’s 1-0 to Jack.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You were too hasty.

          • Albert

            Not so.

          • Martin

            Albert

            The evidence shows otherwise.

          • Albert

            No, I’ve shown that Carl’s point doesn’t work because his post was about Jack’s but Carl claims no infallibility about Jack’s post, only his own.

          • carl jacobs

            You haven’t shown anything of the sort. Jack accused me of something I didn’t do because he read into my words something that wasn’t there.

          • Albert

            But when he did so, he was being sarcastic, and you did not realise this.

          • carl jacobs

            Why do I suddenly see the face of Rod Serling over your shoulder?

            When Jack wrote this …

            Which was to mock and show contempt – i.e. sarcasm.

            … he was being neither sarcastic nor ironic.

          • Albert

            But that wasn’t the post you said showed irony was lost on Jack. And remember, he gets to say what he meant, just as you do…

          • carl jacobs

            When Jack wrote …

            So the concepts of heresy and apostasy do not exist amongst protestants.

            … he was willfully ignoring the point I had made. So I said …

            Irony is lost upon you, Grasshopper.

            … to force him to confront it. It also gave me the opportunity to call him grasshopper which made me feel good. He was avoiding the issue by avoiding the irony. Jack’s direction to …

            Learn the difference between irony and sarcasm, Grasshopper.

            … was his attempt to restore his status as master. It only works if he actually believed that I was being sarcastic.

          • Albert

            No, the sarcasm referred to his own post as I understand, and that is the point.

          • carl jacobs

            That makes absolutely no sense. I introduced irony in relation to my own post. Jack admitted that he understood my intent. He asserted several times that I was being sarcastic. He even defined sarcasm consistent with my argument. There is no textual evidence that what you say is true.

          • Albert

            I’m reading the same thread, and I see him as making a claim about his own sarcasm. I’e. you misread his post as serious when it was sarcastic (and it was definitely that). Perhaps it’s a British humour thing.

          • carl jacobs

            Albert, please explain how this exchange on this thread …

            Me: I fully comprehended my intent.

            Jack: Which was to mock and show contempt – i.e. sarcasm.

            … fits with your observation. It was my intent in view. That intent was associated with my original post on this subthread. Jack is clearly asserting that my intent was sarcasm.

            How does Jack’s assertion that my intent in my post was sarcastic establish that Jack was in fact talking about his own sarcasm in his own post?

          • Albert

            As the thread appears connected with my posts (i.e. the ones I am commenting on) the interchange you cite here does not appear and on the full thread it occurs after I made my original comment. This is what I have:

            Jack: Does sola scriptura and the right of a Protestant to interpret scripture according to his personal conscience and direct guidance by the Holy Spirit, permit accussations of heresy?

            Carl: Of course not. We need an infallible interpreter whom we will identify by … personal conscience and direct guidance by the Holy Spirit.Hrmmm.

            Jack: So the concepts of heresy and apostasy do not exist amongst protestants.

            Carl: Irony is lost upon you, Grasshopper.

            Jack: Learn the difference between irony and sarcasm, Grasshopper.

            Albert: I think that’s 1-0 to Jack.

            Now clearly, when you accuse Jack of not understanding irony, it is because you have not understood the sarcasm of his post. May be you have to be British or Catholic to see it.

          • len

            Give it a rest.

            Is that irony or sarcasm.?

          • Albert

            I’m responding to a post from Carl. If you don’t want to read it, don’t read it.

          • Martin

            Albert

            But Carl was infallible in his own post and he alone is able to interpret it infallibly.

          • Albert

            He was infallible in his own meaning, but his own meaning was a misinterpretation of Jack’s!

          • Martin

            Albert

            But you cannot interpret Carl’s post, only he can do that.

          • Albert

            But that applies to Carl too, and his (mis)interpretation of Jack.

          • Martin

            Albert

            But how do you know he has misinterpreted Jack if you can’t interpret Carl?

          • Albert

            If we follow that logic then Carl has insulated us all from each other.

          • carl jacobs

            I’m the author and therefore the infallible interpreter.

          • Albert

            But then so is Jack of his posts, in which case, your post about irony, while expressing your view infallibly, shows that your view was in fact, mistaken.

          • carl jacobs

            I and only I can state that I intended the post to be irony. Jack is simply infallibly wrong. He cannot make infallible statements about my intent.

          • Albert

            And nor you about his.

          • Written just like a protestant. You may have intended it to be irony but there are clearly defined rules to be followed.

          • carl jacobs

            So you have an infallible definer of the rules for irony and sarcasm – who no doubt has set forth these rules as dogma replete with the necessary “declares, pronounces, defines, and proclaims” and associated anathemas?

          • No Carl, it’s called correct and customary usage – without it there would be anarchy and babbling. Irony is the expression of one’s meaning by using language that normally signifies the opposite for humorous or emphatic effect. Sarcasm, on the other hand, is the use of irony to mock or convey contempt.

          • But your American. Besides, do you think the evangelists fully comprehended all they were writing?

          • Martin

            HJ

            I think you meant “you’re”

          • Indeed, which rather proves Jack’s point about rules of communication.

          • carl jacobs

            Yeah. He did that on purpose to see if I would bite. But I saw through his treacherous scheme.

          • Now, that’s irony.

          • carl jacobs

            No, it’s actually the truth. I did think you did it on purpose. If you did not do it on purpose, then I was wrong (about that! No unwarranted extensions, thank you.)

          • Lol ….
            Jack’s irony is wasted on you, Grasshopper.

          • carl jacobs

            I see. Now you are withdrawing into typical British inscrutability as your last line of defense.

          • Grasshopper, where there is no contention, there is neither defeat nor victory, neither attack nor defence. The supple willow does not contend against the storm, yet it survives.

          • Anton

            And if it doesn’t then you can always make it into cricket bats.

          • carl jacobs

            I fully comprehended my intent.

          • Which was to mock and show contempt – i.e. sarcasm.

          • carl jacobs

            No, Jack. This is why you are wrong. My intent was to show that you are dependent upon the exact same logic you condemn in Protestants.

          • Jack understands the intent – it just wasn’t irony. The Church’s doctrinal indefectibility is based on the words and commission of Christ and the acts of the Apostles and the early church.

          • carl jacobs

            Jack, if you want to see sarcasm from my hand then read the posts I have made on this thread about Mark Hewerdine. There you will find mockery. If I had intended sarcasm in my post above, there would have been a much sharper edge.

    • len

      No more than the magisterium, who have been doing misinterpretation of scripture for centuries.

      • Martin

        Len

        Remember, only they can interpret what they have said.

        • len

          This is why arguing with those within the RCC is futile,
          If they want the Lie I suppose God has given them over to it.

          • Martin

            Len

            But we can still point it out, and God may still yet be merciful.

      • Albert

        And if you are not an infallible authority the same can be said of you.

        • Martin

          Albert

          Is he that old?

          • len

            LOL.

          • Albert

            ??

          • Martin

            Albert

            Read your post in context.

          • Albert

            Still don’t get it.

          • carl jacobs

            I don’t get it either. But it’s nice to see that even the British can’t penetrate the fog that surrounds British humor.

          • Martin

            Carl

            See my reply to Len above.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Len said:
            No more than the magisterium, who have been doing misinterpretation of scripture for centuries.

            You said:

            And if you are not an infallible authority the same can be said of you.

            implying that Len had been doing it for centuries. It amused at the time.

          • Albert

            Very funny.

        • len

          I have never claimed to be infallible.Only the RCC would make a claim as arrogant and nonsensical as that.

          • Albert

            So the same can be said of you.

    • Given the broad range of “mutually flourishing” theologies within the CoE it’s hard to see which one of them would be used to establish whether a heresy had been committed.

      • The only valid benchmark for heresy is Catholic doctrine.

        • Martin

          HJ

          I’ll agree, it is heretical but there are others too.

        • chefofsinners

          Not sure that came out the way you meant it, Jack.

          • carl jacobs

            Maybe not, but still he spoke with wisdom without knowing.

          • chefofsinners

            And so, at last, there was peace between the house of Jacobs and the house of Jack.

          • bluedog

            Not for long.

          • Catholic doctrine is the standard or point of reference (benchmark) for Christian truth against which other theologies can be compared. Any departures from it are heretical.

          • Anton

            Christian scripture is the standard or point of reference (benchmark) for Christian truth against which other writings can be compared.

          • len

            Catholic doctrine is a benchmark as to how heresy is defined.
            By comparing catholic doctrine to the Word of God.
            This isn`t exactly rocket science.I am suprised that no catholics have applied this simple test ?.

          • Abp chefofsinners

            Unless perpetrated by popes, in which case they are hermeneutical.

          • It’s called the “hermeneutics of continuity”. Whilst there have been heretical popes, none have used their position to infallibly declare any departure from established Catholic doctrine. The preferred method of modernists is ambiguity because they understand once a Truth has been established it cannot change, so they chip away at doctrine.

          • Anton

            The preferred method of more than just modernists. “Reinterpretation” of Unam Sanctam so that it doesn’t mean that if you are excommunicated then you lose salvation is another example. I’d love Boniface’s view of that reinterpretation.

          • Already covered this.

          • Anton

            Yes, too bad Boniface isn’t around to tell you you are talking rot. you’d then say that the Holy Spirit was giving him words he didn’t fully understand, of course, and his response to that would be even more entertaining. That is is the man who had 6000 people massacred in Palestrina as part of a personal vendetta against the Colonnas, but Roman Catholicism was never too particular about its popes.

        • Not the only valid benchmark, but a pretty good indication.

    • Malcolm Smith

      Yes, when the doctrines are very clearly contrary to the scriptures.

    • chefofsinners

      Indeed. It enables heresies to be quickly identified and dealt with, even when the church’s leadership is corrupt. It enables the church to cast off the sin which so easily entangles. Without sola scriptura we’d be in the same heretical mess as the Catholics.

  • Albert

    Does the Bible permit someone to preach heresy in the Church? Are there occasions when scripture forbids people to speak?

  • ecclesiaman

    Whatever the qualities and spirituality of the SA Church, for them to do an Ian Smith (UDI) in Newcastle surely creates more problems on many levels than it solves, or rather attempts to solve.
    Schism is awful and a mockery of our unity in Christ, but sometimes it is reluctantly unavoidable when fundamentals are involved. Would it not have been better to go with GAFCON and seek to bring in necessary reform via this organisation/denomination. Even that could raise problems if ,for example, GAFCON supports a reformed theology (I don’t know if it does!) which conflicts with the Arminian position? Methodists and Baptists have separate churches with these doctrinal differences in their statements of faith.
    From a legal and constitutional point of view is it even possible to reform the C of E?
    Perhaps we should be heading back to NT times where there were local autonomous churches? Local churches can expel heretics.

    • petej

      Well that’s what JPC want – they don’t agree with having an established church and they don’t agree with the parish system. What I don’t understand is why they want to remain in an institution they so fundamentally disagree with.

      I think GAFCON are currently discussing the role of women. JPC take a hardline against women’s ministry so maybe that’s why they decided to go alone.

      Of course if they hadn’t already impared themselves from the diocesis they could have had an official flying bishop.

      • Anton

        What is your evidence that they are against Establishment and the parish system?

        • petej

          They have videos online which explain their reasons for their actions. They see establishment as heresy and feel the parish system is failing

          • Anton

            Thank you. It would indeed be odd to be in a CoE congregation and regard Establishment as heresy. Can you provide a link, please?

      • ecclesiaman

        I am not familiar with the C of E and just commenting regarding schism in general. I am guessing that a flying Bishop is a genuine C of E Bishop but not located to any one area. Would it not be difficult to have 2 Bishops in one diocese? Or have I got it wrong? It would probably be doomed to failure eventually as HG comments.

  • Lienus

    “Cleanliness is next to Godliness.”
    – Martin Loofah

    • Did you know John Calvin had a sweet tooth? He had a Swiss roll in the Reformation.

  • carl jacobs

    Gavin Ashenden on the events in question.

    • Royinsouthwest

      I am sure that the female vicar can preach a good sermon on forgiveness and turning the other cheek.

      • Merchantman

        We have a Female curate who preaches a fine line in heresy. To say more would be inappropriate. Suffice it to say anyone who is orthodox is closely monitored, except that is the vicar who is orthodox , but who seems to have been hen pecked into submission.
        This simply cant go on.

        • Anton

          Perhaps it wouldn’t if you found out who else was fed up and went public together?

          • Dominic Stockford

            As we discover in Job Chapter 16, there sometimes arrives a point when politeness is no longer called for.

  • Typhoon Tina

    So the Archbishop isn’t doing his job?

    • petej

      The Archbishop of Canterbury is in Israel fostering peace and encouraging Christians.

  • vsscoles

    He is not my bishop. Nor is he the bishop of anyone in the Church of England, or in the Diocese of Newcastle, except perhaps members of one congregation. He has no diocese. He is not formally in communion with any other bishop in England. He is actually an assistant curate, but probably not for much longer.

    • From the 1662 Prayer Book on the Consecration of Bishops:

      The Archbishop.

      WILL you then faithfully exercise yourself in the Holy Scriptures, and call upon God by prayer for the true understanding of the same; so that you may be able by them to teach and exhort with wholesome Doctrine, and to withstand and convince the gainsayers?
      Answer. I will so do, by the help of God.

      The Archbishop.

      ARE you ready, with all faithful diligence, to banish and drive away from the Church all erroneous and strange doctrine contrary to God’s Word; and both privately and openly to call upon and encourage others to the same?
      Answer. I am ready, the Lord being my helper.

      The Archbishop.

      WILL you deny all ungodliness and worldly lusts, and live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world; that you may show yourself in all things an example of good works unto others, that the adversary may be ashamed, having nothing to say against you?
      Answer. I will so do, the Lord being my helper.

      The Archbishop.

      WILL you maintain and set forward, as much as shall lie in you, quietness, love, and peace among all men; and such as be unquiet, disobedient, and criminous, within your Diocese, correct and punish, according to such authority as you have by God’s Word, and as to you shall be committed by the Ordinance of this Realm?
      Answer. I will so do, by the help of God.
      .
      I suggest that Mr Pryke may be a truer Bishop than most of those Bishops with whom he is not in communion, and that he will be a better shepherd of God’s flock.

      • Dominic Stockford

        Absolutely. He gives hope to genuinely faithful Anglican Christians in the UK.

        • To make myself clear, I am not a fan of bishops of any kind, but if Anglicans are determined to keep them, the churches need to select their own because otherwise they are going to continue with the parcel of rogues they have at the present time.
          .
          I recall an old puritan writing that the captain of a ship remains in control of his vessel even if the king himself should come on board. But if the captain should recklessly attempt to scuttle the ship or to run it onto the rocks, then the passengers have the right to depose him and elect the best qualified among themselves to take charge.

          That seems to be roughly what is happening.

          • petej

            Surely if churches just select their own then there can be no pretence of having a “church of England ”

            In the days when the judges ruled Israel had no king, everyone did as he saw fit.

          • Anton

            There is always a tension with the captain when an Admiral sails on board a warship. The last voyage of the Bismarck is a good example.

  • Inspector General

    Where do liberal Marxist-like priests go when they die. Those who make a comfortable living on the back of Jesus Christ, thank you very much, yet fail to deliver what they are there for, to be Christ’s vicars, and not presenters of their own wrongness and sinful ways…
    +++++++++++++++++
    First secret[edit]
    In her third memoir, written in 1941, Lúcia said that the first secret, a vision of Hell, was disclosed to the children on July 13, 1917.

    Our Lady showed us a great sea of fire which seemed to be under the earth. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form, like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in the conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames that issued from within themselves together with great clouds of smoke, now falling back on every side like sparks in a huge fire, without weight or equilibrium, and amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear. The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repulsive likeness to frightful and unknown animals, all black and transparent. This vision lasted but an instant. How can we ever be grateful enough to our kind heavenly Mother, who had already prepared us by promising, in the first Apparition, to take us to heaven. Otherwise, I think we would have died of fear and terror.[8]
    +++++++++++++++++
    Women too, no doubt!

    Be afraid. Be very afraid. You know who you are…

    • Dominic Stockford

      So she had read a bit of Revelation, and regurgitated it in a different form, well done her.

      • Inspector General

        Why Mary. Tradition has it that women are so special to God, that he needs one close at hand to understand them.

  • Abp chefofsinners

    Great tidings, fellow communicants.
    This afternoon I was consecrated Archbishop of Didcot Parkway, through the laying on of hands by a Druid, three lesbian vicarettes, a Jedi Master, and finally by two members of the local constabulary, although that bit wasn’t in the order of service.
    In my new archepiscopalitarian role, I must highlight the rank hypocrisy of Abp Cranmer in appointing himself archbishop and then using his position to rail against +Jonathan Pryke’s legitimacy. Any more of this and I might have to defrock the blighter.

    • carl jacobs

      Ummm … Chef? The color of a bishop’s shirt is supposed to be purple – not wine-stained. You might want to … you know … address that.

      • Abp chefofsinners

        At times such as this, when I have seized the moral highground, I have no need of alcohol. The heady wine of moral transcendence is all I need…. hic!

      • Inspector General

        You! Yes, you, sir. Take notice of the visions at Fatima and revise the standing of Our Lady in the scheme of things, you protestant in extremis. Apparently, God does not agree with the Reformations downgrading of the Holy Mother!

        • Anton

          Jesus’ greatly blessed mother, but not mine. Or yours.

          • Inspector General

            Denying Mary’s place in the divine hierarchy isn’t a terribly good idea…

          • Anton

            Divine hierarchy?? Inspector, we are talking about the Bible, not the pagan gods of Olympus. ‘Divinity’ refers to the universal Creator, and not even Catholics believe Mary is divine. Denying the divinity of Christ is a lot worse, by the way…

          • Inspector General

            Your mind is closed, Anton. You prefer to take the word of sixteenth century annoyed types that what is.

          • Anton

            On this subject I take the word of Jack and Albert as much as the word of the Puritans. ‘Divine’ means like the Creator and Mary isn’t divine and Jesus is. Go on, just ask your Catholic parish priest.

          • Inspector General

            The idea that “God ‘sacrificed’ himself on a cross to forgive our sins” must be the most ludicrous concept man has ever come up with. Humano-centric and damn psychiatric. As if the earth was the centre of creation (which was in vogue back then) and mankind the noblest of beasts, not the brute he has proved himself to be. It is the stuff of the madhouse, sir, and should not be entertained outside it…

          • Anton

            The atonement is another subject, Inspector. Let’s start with who Jesus is. Your local Catholic priest will set you right on that.

          • Inspector General

            You deny the Higher Understanding!

            Jesus was God’s emissary. Created here on earth but with angelic rank so as to enable miracles to be enacted and to rise again after a ghastly physical death. That’s it. No sorcery or witchcraft or delving into the realms of sheer stupidity. No need for the Trinity fabrication. Just pure logic, as indeed is the definition of God.

          • Anton

            Why do you remain within the Roman Catholic church with views like those?

          • Inspector General

            Because the Catholics don’t allow lay people to decide anything. For the worshipping of God Almighty, they are the best.

          • carl jacobs

            And yet your “higher understanding” was developed entirely by you – late in the evening under the influence of too much Scotch, the poetry of Kipling, and a bad bit of boiled beef. The inconsistency of your position is striking.

          • Inspector General

            My dear fellow, is that the best you can summons…

          • carl jacobs

            You mean the Truth? Yes, I’ve found it to be the best method of engagement.

          • Inspector General

            The truth as a sixteenth century man saw it. Good for you. Nothing like independent thought coming to a logical conclusion with a further half a millennium’s knowledge on board…

          • carl jacobs

            The Truth to which I referred was the fact that you created this “higher understanding” out of whole cloth and upon your own authority. And yet you say you stay in a church specifically because it refuses to listen to this “higher understanding” and “doesn’t allow lay people to decide anything”. You don’t care what it teaches so long as it refuses to change? And then you talk about “a further half a millennium’s knowledge on board…”

            You haven’t thought this “higher understanding” through at all, Inspector. Not at all. Hence the obvious association with too much whiskey, too little sleep, and a difficult period of indigestion.

          • Inspector General

            Why don’t you just say the Inspector is having a mental crisis, Carl. He has laid his fruits out on this site tonight passim. In all honesty as the Higher Understanding expects of him. Eat of them and spit the skins out…

          • carl jacobs

            Whatever you do, Inspector, please make sure you remain in the RCC. It amuses me greatly to remind Jack of this fact.

          • Inspector General

            And as for you, Carl. Please continue to lick every word Calvin ever uttered…

          • carl jacobs

            Who ever told you that I did? You really don’t understand at all.

          • CINO.

          • Well, in all seriousness, something is going very wrong, Inspector. If you believe any of this nonsense (do you?) then your soul is in grave danger. Jack’s advice, you should seek spiritual counselling.

          • Anton

            But by your standard they are heretics because they believe (like me!) in the Trinity. You’ll find others with views like yours in a Unitarian church. Why do you prefer to worship with people you consider heretics when you could worship with people you don’t?

          • Inspector General

            Because it just doesn’t matter. Those people are worshipping as they believe. One just happens to have the heads up on them, but at the end of it, it’s a service to worship the Almighty.

          • Anton

            Have you considered converting to Islam?

          • Anton

            It’s touted openly as a service to worship Jesus Christ as the same god as the Creator.

          • bluedog

            Are you suggesting that Jesus was the final prophet of the Almighty on Earth?

          • Inspector General

            They’ll be no more, one has considered. As stated before, we exist at all for God’s amusement. It is logical to suggest that man was originally a disposable item, but the Almighty has seen fit to salvage the best of us. Perhaps the Almighty was impressed by the way his truly independent creation conducts itself. Can’t think of any other reason, and the Higher Understanding does not object to that train of thought.

          • bluedog

            You’ve just walked straight past Islam without recognising it. Christ is the Son of God, not the final prophet.

          • Albert

            On this subject I take the word of Jack and Albert as much as the word of the Puritans

            I don’t understand what I’m being accused of here.

          • carl jacobs

            not even Catholics believe Mary is divine.

            Well, formally that is true. But functionally? No. According to catholic dogma, Mary is functionally a fourth member of the Godhead.

          • Anton

            I agree that Catholic praxis and dogma regarding Mary point in different directions, but it’s the Inspector I’m talking to here, not Jack.

          • Some misinformed Catholics, perhaps.

          • Anton

            There are a lot of them and their church does little to correct them.

          • carl jacobs

            It can hardly correct what it teaches. This is where Jack will say that everything taught about Mary must be interpreted through a lens of “Marian devotion”. These are legal evasions they use to avoid the obvious functional implications of what they teach.

          • You are hostile to the Catholic Church and so choose to interpret her teachings to promote your own theology.

            Go ahead, demonstrate how Church teachings imply Mary is “functionally a fourth member of the Godhead.”

          • And you know this, how?

          • Anton

            Didn’t you see the weekend’s news from Fatima for a start?

          • As adopted Sons of God, through union with Christ, all the Saints in Heaven become one with God. Mary has a special place in Heaven. No Catholic regards her as God.

          • Albert

            Member of the Godhead? Everything is wrong with that statement. Even the terminology. Are you a tritheist?

          • In the Divine plan, Inspector, but Jack agrees with the sentiment.

          • Mother Teresa: “No Mary, No Jesus”.

            Mary is the Mother of our Salvation. Spiritual Mother that we will be lead to an authentic response to Mary.

            When Catholics say, “Mary is our Mother” we mean she is our Spiritual Mother; we recognise her for who she is and for her role in the plan of God.

          • Anton

            No Mary, no Jesus? The second person of the Trinity pre-existed Mary and although he’s have had different genes if God had used another Jewess than Mary there’d still have been the Incarnation.

          • God still had to Incarnate and Mary was chosen before time to bear Him in her womb. God foreknew Mary’s response, prepared her and endowed her with the fullness of His Grace. Nevertheless, Mary still had to assent to God. She wasn’t “programmed” by God to agree. Just as Adam and Eve weren’t “programmed” to rebel. They, like us, make choices about whether we are going to make use of the gifts given us, and cooperate with God or not.

        • Abp chefofsinners

          I had a vision of Fatima once. She rather filled the screen, but she gave that javelin some.
          Today is going rather well. First my elevation to the archbishopric, now I anticipate imminent beatification.

          • Dominic Stockford

            With comments like that you’ll get there soon. A great interjection.

        • carl jacobs

          There are four primary reasons I reject the RCC:

          1. The false body of Gnosis called Sacred Tradition.
          2. The elevation of the Magisterium above Scripture.
          3. A concept of Justification that is inherently works-based.
          4. The idolatry surrounding Mary.

          If that is Protestantism in Extremis, then I will wear the title.

          • Inspector General

            Let’s just keep this to Mary. You deny the visions at Fatima happened, then…

          • carl jacobs

            Yes. I also deny the images of Mary in a piece of toast.

          • Inspector General

            A night of denial then. But the Inspector is the winner. He denies the sop given to first to fourth century polydeists to get them on board – the Trinity.

          • None of which you have ever established.

          • carl jacobs

            It’s like trying to convince a Stalinist that there really was a guy named Yezhov.

          • Some self awareness on your part is a good start, Carl.

    • Inspector General

      “…and Moses said unto the assembled, There’s two more. Legs eleven. Do not lie with a man as you would with a woman as that is disgusting and the children might see. And finally, top of the clock, number twelve. Do not trespass on the railway as you will be fined up to £1000, or six months in gaol, or a combination thereof. I thank you”

      {RAPTUROUS APPLAUSE….}

    • Hi

      Does that mean we have to call you eminence or something? Anyways this means nothing. I understand from that holy church of the universal Spoo that they have declared all your orders to be utterly null and void.

      Chefofsinners orders are themselves invalid, but some Chefofsinners are nevertheless validly ordained – not in virtue of their Chefofsinners orders, but in virtue of a post-feminist reintroduction of valid orders conferred by break-away Chefofsinners bishops , such that a given Chefofsinners minister might, by research, be able to trace his orders back to a prelate possessed of valid orders. If you get any of that gobbledygook then you are clearly in the “higher understandings” of inspector General.

      • Abp chefofsinners

        You have the position exactly, Hannah. The Inspector himself could not have explained it with more clarity.

    • Allosexuel

      Weel yoo lay yoor ‘ands on moi, cheri? Wee can saav ze defrookin unteel lator. An’ ow aboot pour Linus?

  • Martin

    Incidentally, does anyone know why this blog is not HTTPS when the whole world is heading that way?

  • Mike17

    Of the 95 Theses 69 and 91 are very interesting:
    69. Bishops and curates are bound to admit the commissaries of papal indulgences with all reverence.
    91. If, therefore, indulgences were preached according to the spirit and intention of the pope, all these doubts would be readily resolved. Indeed, they would not exist.

  • Hi

    I don’t understand the fuss here. A previous archbishop became a pagan Druid alongside being Anglican and went on as before and no one did anything .

    • carl jacobs

      If you think of bishops as Lords and you think of parishioners as serfs, then you should understand. This is about territory and rent. When one bishop moves onto another bishop’s turf there is going to be trouble. Doctrine is fungible to a bishop so long as it does not interrupt the flow of rent. Money received from parishioners is not fungible. These competing bishops are threatening to break a lot of rice bowls.

      • Anton

        I envy your cynicism at times, Carl.

        • carl jacobs

          Realism, Anton. Realism. I just follow the data where it leads.

    • Royinsouthwest

      The previous archbishop you referred to did not become a pagan druid. He became a druid in the Gorsedd, a Welsh cultural organisation. There are plenty of reasons for criticising Rowan Williams but why do you deliberately misrepresent his affiliation with the Gorsedd in this way? Would you describe any philosopher as a “pagan” because all the original Greek philosophers were pagans?

      • Hi Roy

        Sorry if I’ve upset , one of my sister in laws is a Welsh Asian Jew, so I get the cultural sensitivity .

        I always thought druids were pagans according to Christianity ? As I say I can’t understand the fuss here as Anglicans are known for their liberal approach to religion, so presumably druid and Christian is acceptable. Although when I speak to my Christian friends about atheist Christianity or a Muslim Christian , like there’s atheist Jews and some Jews who like Buddhist stuff , my friends freak out and think one had two heads. But they , surprisingly , think the phrase Jewish Christian is normal, but Muslim Christian is absurd ?so why not a Buddhist Christian , a druid pagan Christian or an atheistic Christian?

        • Sarky

          Or even a christian christian.

        • Anton

          If you want a constructive discussion, you would do well to define Druid, as you used it first!

          • Hi

            Maybe, but I don’t feel up for a big discussion . Which in any case , I’m not entirely convinced would be constructive.

          • Anton

            I’m not seeking one either as I know very little indeed about druids; just making a point of logic.

          • Chefofsinners

            Druids know very little about druids. Modern day Druidism is an invention, surmised from a few stones and the odd burial mound.

        • Chefofsinners

          Jewish is a nationality, or ethnicity. That’s why it’s different to ‘Muslim’, ‘Buddhist’, etc.

        • Royinsouthwest

          The druids were the equivalent of the intellectual class among the Celts. They were obviously pagan but that does not mean that everything they were concerned with was inherently pagan. Pythagoras was an Ancient Greek mystic and philosopher but that does not at all invalidate his theorem about right angled triangles. The people who turn up at Stonehenge at the summer solstice may call themselves druids and would define themselves as pagans but that has nothing to do with the Welsh or Cornish Gorsedd of Bards.

          Similarly, just because most of the days of the week are named after pagan gods does not mean that we are worshipping Thor say, every time we mention Thursday.

          • Hi

            Okay , it’s all kosher and above board then.

            Q: Can women be Gorsedd of Bards or is it like masons?

          • Royinsouthwest

            Yes there are women members of the Gorsedd.

  • prompteetsincere

    For forms of Church government the less than wise may contend, but the spiritual dynamic of The Protestant Reformation ever was and ever shall be’ad fontes’: to THE Source of Infallible, Inerrant Holy Writ. Some forms of Church government render that Sola Saving exercise more problematic than others; but in the context of the + II Thessalonians 2 Pauline Prophesied apostasia of the last days unfolding day by day, the same chill warning of St. Augustine in the apocalyptic section of his ‘City of GOD’ bears deepest reflection and practice: namely, the spirit of antichrist will attempt to indwell The Church; and will “seduce those…dead in soul” (this)”a result of GOD’s secret judgment already passed…seduction of unrighteousness of them that perish ‘because they received not the love of The Truth, that they might be Saved’ (II Thess. 2:10)…
    being judged, they shall be seduced; and being seduced, they shall be judged, the secretly just and justly secret Judgments of GOD.” CD, XX, xix.

  • Manfarang

    Something like this went on in the Catholic Church with the consecrations by Archbishop Lefebvre but it was all smoothed over in the end.

    • Not quite …. but there are signs of progress.

      • Manfarang

        Signs of progress indeed, the regimes of Franco and Salazar which Lefebvre approved are gone.

        • Irrelevant.

          • Manfarang

            Prominent members of the SSPX, including Lefebvre himself, have, at various times, expressed approval or support for a restoration of an absolutist French monarchy; the Vichy government (1940–1944); and the party of Jean-Marie le Pen.

          • And … ?

          • Manfarang

            The Pontiff, who is due to hold his first meeting with the US President at the Vatican later this month, said he would keep an open mind and not pass judgement on Mr Trump until first listening to his views.

          • Anton

            The joys of the feudal system? Great, but only if you are somewhere up the pyramid and most people weren’t.

          • Most people still aren’t and the Western world is sliding into moral, economic and social chaos.

          • Anton

            Most people in Europe live better lives than mediaeval kings.

            Which country led the way into Enlightened secularism? France in the century after it had kicked out its protestants.

          • Define “better lives”.

          • Anton

            Grow up.

          • No, it’s a genuine question.

  • len

    There is something that has struck me as very strange over my years of posting on ‘Cranmer’.
    I always assumed that people would hear the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ’, a light would go on’, and the Truth(of the Gospel of Jesus Christ ) would set them free, exactly as the Word says.
    Not so.How naive of me..
    People resist the Truth in the most peculiar ways.Even when confronted with the Truth of the Gospel people either ignore it or try and turn the Truth into something which accommodates their own particular belief system.
    It would seem that Jesus’s message was aimed at a particular group(those that have ears to hear) and Jesus knew that most would not be able to hear (or accept )His Message.
    Many religious people seem to be in the class unable to hear the Gospel?.Exactly as the Pharisees were unable to recognize God when He stood in front of them.
    I always thought the idea of ‘an elect’ able to comprehend and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ a trifle unfair but it is becoming apparent that is exactly what happens.

    God hardened Pharaohs heart , God will ‘give people over’ to deception because they do not have a love of the Truth.
    Many (even on this blog) have heard the Truth but then denied it , twisted it, corrupted it, laughed at it, but to their own expense.
    God indeed is not mocked.

    • David

      Yes, like you I don’t understand how the process works, and also like you I used to think “how unfair!”; and there’s still a bit of that reaction in me.
      But what happens is, as you’ve just said, they resist what they hear and instead attempt to twist it to suit whatever it is that they want to believe, thus rejecting the Biblical revelations and advice.
      The Pharisees are alive and with us !

      • IanCad

        I told this tale a few years back but I think it’s worth repeating:
        We were at a service where the Minister was reflecting on the baleful influence of the Scribes and Pharisees, and how those same types are still with us today. At the end of the sermon he invited questions and was asked who he thought were the Scribes and Pharisees in the church today. Quick as a flash he asked all the S & P’s to please stand up.
        We all see but darkly and perhaps the spirits of the Scribes and Pharisees reside in us.

      • len

        Pharisees certainly are with us, I suppose self righteousness always appealed to a certain group.

    • Manfarang

      “The gospel of truth is joy to those who have received from the Father of truth the gift of knowing him by the power of the Logos, who has come from the Pleroma and who is in the thought and the mind of the Father; he it is who is called “the Savior,” since that is the name of the work which he must do for the redemption of those who have not known the Father. For the name of the gospel is the manifestation of hope, since that is the discovery of those who seek him, because the All sought him from whom it had come forth. You see, the All had been inside of him, that illimitable, inconceivable one, who is better than every thought.”

    • “I always thought the idea of ‘an elect’ able to comprehend and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ a trifle unfair but it is becoming apparent that is exactly what happens.”

      It’s sad, but I don’t think it’s unfair. It would be unfair if the Gospel was just forced onto everyone. There can’t be true acceptance unless there’s also the ability to walk away. All we can do is trust that God’s ultimate judgement is fair and just.

      • Everyone is given sufficient grace to understand the Gospel. The “elect” are those foreknown to God who exercise free will and reject Him.

    • betteroffoutofit

      Yes, Len – I also become more aware of it daily. I think it’s about WILL, though; people make the CHOICE about whether to listen, even as Eve and Adam did.

      In a sense, perhaps that’s part of the meaning of ‘Original Sin’ — it’s the basic sin that (in)humans commit and keep on committing: because it suits them to listen to worldly (serpentine) arguments rather than to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Once they’d eaten of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, though, God had equipped them to make better choices. Now, that Christ Himself has illustrated that knowledge even more clearly: they have no excuse for inly blindness. Except . . . as Christ noted . . . they still aren’t strong enough to know what they do.

    • Better to nurture and protect your own faith than declare others are damned.

      • len

        Good job others thought differently Jack.

  • len

    One other observation I would like to make to all those who are searching for spiritual truth (sorry this is off thread but I believe extremely relevant)
    All the ‘God Channels’ on UK TV are absolutely awful, these will put off anyone who wanted to take a look at Christianity .This is not Christianity but mostly con artists who are after your money and your support for their phoney ministries.
    These ‘god channels’ are a complete disgrace.
    Most of these’ god channels ‘probably started of with good intentions but greed and corruption soon took over.
    We are apparently at ‘the end of the church age’ and these big ministries are the last place to find God.
    Get a Bible and ask the Holy Spirit to enlighten you, but don`t be disillusioned by these frauds on TV

    • Sunday special. You can be saved for only $50, and you also get this free pen.

    • Sarky

      What??? You’re telling me ive been ‘sowing my seed’ for nothing??

    • EWTN is available in Britain too.

      • carl jacobs

        I assume it broadcasts old radio programs of Father Feeney so RCs will know what the RCC used to teach?

        • Father Feeney greatly restricted the scope of God’s mercy and His redemption and taught an interpretation of Extra ecclesiam, nulla salus inconsistent with Church doctrine. The dogma does not mean that only faithful Roman Catholics can be saved. The Church has never taught that. He was excommunicated but he was reconciled to the Church before he died in 1978.

          In correcting Fr. Feeney in 1949, the Supreme Congregation of the Holy Office issued a document entitled Suprema Haec Sacra, which stated that ” extra ecclesiam, nulla salus” … is an infallible statement.” But added, “this dogma must be understood in that sense in which the Church itself understands it.”

          Jesus told his followers, “I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd” (John 10:16). After his Resurrection, Jesus gave the threefold command to Peter: “Feed my lambs. . . . Tend my sheep. . . . Feed my sheep” (John 21:15–17). The word translated as “tend” (poimaine) means “to direct” or “to superintend” – in other words, “to govern.” So although there are sheep that are not of Christ’s fold, it is through the Church that they are able to receive his salvation.

          People who have never had an opportunity to hear of Christ and his Church – and those Christians whose minds have been closed to the truth of the Church by their conditioning – are not necessarily cut off from God’s mercy.

          We’ve covered all this before.

          • Anna

            “We’ve covered all this before…”

            Possibly, but your efforts are not in vain. You have provided some of us with a unique Roman Catholic viewpoint on spiritual matters in a very gracious and polite manner, so different to the ad hominem attacks from some quarters (the latter, I must add, seems more in keeping with the spirit of historical Catholicism with its inquisitions, intolerance and the rest).

            Although some of things you write seems, to me, indefensible from a scriptural perspective I have gained a clearer idea of the reasons why intelligent and sincere Catholics remain true to their beliefs. Your contributions have definitely enriched this blog.

          • Why thank you; that’s very kind of you to say so.

          • Cressida de Nova

            Careful Jack
            “better slapped with the truth than kissed with a lie” as one of our famous historical English Catholics said.
            Clues…Trojan horse, Achilles heel,Greeks bearing gifts etc

          • Lol … Jack caught the barb: ” … the latter, I must add, seems more in keeping with the spirit of historical Catholicism”, but understands the barriers protestants face in recognising the Truth from Rome. It was a generous comment.

      • len

        I know I have seen it.

  • David

    I strongly recommend all visitors to ++ Cranmer’s Electronic Diocese to read the skilful article by the Rev. Jules Gomes on that most excellent of websites, The Conservative Woman – read mainly by men, I am informed.
    He contrasts the attitude of many in the C of E episcopacy, who as ardent supporters of the EU and greater immigration, even from culturally incompatible areas, are basically believers in a borderless world – at least for political and cultural purposes, with their territoriality and job protectionism, regarding ‘foreign’ bishops consecrating new English ones as being taboo.
    It really is a most astute comparison.

    • Abp chefofsinners

      You know Jules?

      • David

        I only ‘know’ him in the sense that I have long recognised his articles as very well written, and based on excellent, orthodox Christianity as it was given to us, all whilst being politically astute and prescient. He comes over as being, at least on ‘paper’, to me, as a talented man of God. No doubt he is thorn in the side of his liberal bishop ?

        • Abp chefofsinners

          He recently left the CoE after years of fighting for the truth, but continues to regard himself as an Anglican.

          • Charitas Lydia

            Just read the article myself, David and Chefofsinners. Could’nt stop laughing. Loved the wonderful comments made by the two of you on the Conservative Woman. Here’s the article for anyone interested. http://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/rebel-priest-rev-jules-gomes-church-needs-demolish-wall-conservatism/

          • David

            Thank you for the information.
            A canon theologian – in a cathedral ?
            He sounds a interesting and very capable man.
            Have you met him, or only know of him through some point of contact ?

          • Chefofsinners

            Canon theologian in the diocese of Sodor & Man. He stayed with me a few weekends ago and spoke brilliantly at our church.

  • Abp chefofsinners
    • Charitas Lydia

      Farewell to The Titanic. We planned to sail for Canterbury and York. We thought we were unsinkable. In Newcastle we hit an iceberg. The rest is history.

      • carl jacobs

        More like they advertised a trip to Jerusalem, but planned a trip to Bloomsbury – with the cruise expected to be one consuming orgy. And when some people objected to the bait and switch they were told “Oh, but we meant the New Jerusalem.”

      • Chefofsinners

        The Anglican Mission in England (AMiE) now has its base in Newcastle.
        So the good ship CoE will be engulfed by a Toon AMiE.
        Geddit? I said Toon AMiE… Geddit?

        • carl jacobs

          Neither do we.

          • “We” being Americans?

          • carl jacobs

            “We” being those of us who suffer pain at the mere thought of a pun like “Toonamie”.

          • You don’t appreciate the efforts of our resident pundit?

        • Anton

          Did you get my one about adders in the summer last week?

          • Chefofsinners

            No… must have missed that. Worth reprising?

          • Anton

            You’ve missed it twice now… adding numbers is the same as summing them.

    • Linus

      This is like watching a person who’s dedicated his life to making your life as difficult as possible slowly waste away from terminal cancer.

      On the one hand, it’s “bien fait pour sa gueule”. On the other, there are slow, lingering and painful deaths that you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy.

      This is what awaits all churches down the line. The Catholics will probably be next. Then the various evangelical cults will follow. So we’re in for a good 50 years of Christians whining about how their churches are dying leaving them as the only true believers. And then they’ll die, and that will be that.

      I support the right of individuals to end their days when their suffering becomes unbearable. It’s just a pity that Christians won’t avail themselves of this option. They clearly enjoy suffering too much.

      • Chefofsinners

        What is dying is the fake version of Christianity which panders to immorality and idolatry. There’s no comfort for you in that.

        • Linus

          There’s every comfort. When Christianity is nothing more than a fringe belief lurking on the edges of society, it will no longer have the power to punish those who refuse to live by its rules.

          To a certain extent, that’s already happened. Here in France religion has no power over the State. In the UK however, it still does.

          When the CofE crashes and burns and the State eschews religion, then you’ll be free. Until then the (admittedly only nominal) theocratic nature of your government makes all Englishmen beholden to a tribal totem and its archaic religion. Your queen still rules “by the grace of god”, but not for much longer.

      • Anton

        About as reliable as most attempts at divination!

        • Chefofsinners

          Putting the div into divination.

      • Navarth

        As with all legal restrictions on human behaviour which have their base in morality, the concept of the sanctity of life is designed to rein in the power of the State. By removing these safeguards, the ‘right to die’ merely undermines individual freedom and self autonomy; transferring power into the hands of the medical profession and ultimately the State. Marxism in action…

        • Linus

          The right to die is an individual freedom. It can only be exercised by the state in cases of personal incapacity when an incapacitated individual’s wishes have already been made known and his next of kin refuses to respect them.

          The only exception to this that I’m aware of comes when parental authority is abused. Take the example of fundamentalist Christian parents whose terminally ill child’s life can only be prolonged by means of excruciatingly painful treatment with no hope of a cure. The state rightly takes control of situations like this in order to spare the child unnecessary suffering. If left to their own devices, the parents would force their child to endure agonies in order to satisfy their fundamentalist religious beliefs.

          That’s not Marxism, it’s the basic role of the state, which is to guarantee that its citizens can live unmolested by others, be they strangers or family members. When parental authority conflicts with the state’s obligations to the individual, the state wins. Parents do not have an absolute sovereign right to inflict whatever suffering they like on their children in the name of their beliefs.

          Of course this outrages Christians. The narcissistic personality disorder that fuels their faith makes them believe in the absolute sanctity of their authority over their children. Unfortunately for them, the state doesn’t see it that way…

    • carl jacobs

      You have been defrocked of your bishopric already? Did someone find the pictures hidden carefully in the wall?

      • Chefofsinners

        No, I got offered a better job.
        Would be glad to serve you a Big Mac and fries sometime.

    • petej

      The vast majority of the diocesan bishops are conservatives including the two Archbishops. It isn’t sound doctrine to exclude people or to subjugate women.

      • Anton

        What do you mean by “conservative”? It seem to mean somebody who prefers to take no radical action even when radical action is needed.

        It isn’t sound doctrine to ignore or (worse) go against what the Bible says. Remember, this is the same source from which we get all our information about Jesus Christ.

        • petej

          By conservative in this context I mean someone with conservative theology.

          I disagree with you /them that the Bible calls the church to exclude people because they have undesirable characteristics or that it calls women inferior.

          • Chefofsinners

            No-one is calling women inferior. Men and women are created different, with different, complementary roles.
            Sexual morality is clearly defined in the bible.
            The bible most definitely calls the church to exclude those who persist in unrepentant sin.

          • petej

            Hmmm

            Believing women should submit to men (and not vice versa) is the definition of ‘inferior’.

          • Anton

            Take it up with God. It’s in his word.

          • petej

            No it isn’t.

            Submit to *one another* out of reverence for Christ. In Christ there is no male or female.

          • Anton

            Overseers of the church are to be a “man of one woman” according to the apostle Paul writing to Timothy (1 Tim 3).

          • petej

            If you are going to be that literal then most of both testaments doesn’t apply to women!

            It’s also worth pointing out that this is in a letter of advice from Paul to Timothy – it is not a law book.

            The cofe believes in the principle that a correct interpretation of scripture relies on one verse not contradicting another.

          • Anton

            If you are going to deny scripture then you might as well junk all that stuff about Jesus.

          • petej

            I haven’t denied scripture.

            Paul’s clear intent here is to require church leaders to be faithful in marriage. I have no problem with that.

            You have denied the verses I quoted.

          • Anton

            Try reading what Paul wrote rather than what you want him to… a man of one woman not a woman of one man.

            You think scripture contradicts itself?

          • petej

            It’s not I who is claiming scripture is contradictory. You seem to believe that Paul’s point in the verse is that all church leaders must be male. Clearly in the context this is not his point.

            Your interpretation contradicts other verses in scripture and the practice of the early church and the practice of the ancient nation of Israel… As well as the values of basic humanity!

          • Dominic Stockford

            It is not his main point, but it is clearly there to anyone who is not twisting the words to suit themselves.

          • petej

            I disagree. His point is that church leaders should be faithful in marriage, not that they must be male!

          • Anton

            Read the scriptures that Dominic took the trouble to give you an hour ago and tell us what you think they mean.

          • Anna

            Submitting to someone does not make you inferior to them.

            God has placed people in authority in every walk of life- parents, teachers, government leaders, judges. They serve an important purpose- upholding God’s order in the universe. In the context of marriage, God has placed the husband above the wife to reflect the relationship of Christ with His church – one is called to reflect the ‘servant leadership’ (not bossiness) and the other, willing submission (she is not called to be a doormat). The different temperaments of the two sexes make this a very practical arrangement. The impact of each partner is often determined by how closely they conform to the Christian ideal. It is possible, and often the case, that a wife makes greater impact in the marriage and on future generations, by her wisdom and conduct, and by being a source of moral support to her husband.

          • petej

            But your explanation uses the language of superiority /inferiority.

            Sorry but I find theology that says women are inferior to men to be anti Christian, weird and wrong

            Submission is the definition of inferiority.

          • Anna

            ‘But your explanation uses the language of superiority /inferiority.’

            Where did I use the language of ‘superiority /inferiority’?

            “Sorry but I find theology that says women are inferior to men to be anti Christian, weird and wrong.”

            Could not agree more. Moreover, the Bible views greatness differently to the world.

          • petej

            Greatness in the kingdom is indeed different to that in the world. Greatness in the kingdom is about love. True love has no knowledge of superiority or inferiority.

            ‘placed the husband above the wife’ – seems to me to be saying that the husband is superior to the wife.

          • Anna

            “‘placed the husband above the wife’ – seems to me to be saying that the husband is superior to the wife.”

            This is how the world sees it. As Christians, we know that it is better ‘to minister than to be ministered to’, and it is the quality of service one provides, rather than the position one occupies that matters with God. Your position in life simply does not matter. It is how you obey the call which makes you greater or lesser in God’s eyes.

          • petej

            I disagree that women should be in servitude to men (and not vice versa). How is this any different than saying black people should be the slaves of white people – a thing people also used to use the Bible to justify?!

          • Anna

            “I disagree that women should be in servitude to men (and not vice versa)…”

            So do I. Christ has defined the essence of Christian leadership – “Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who leads like the one who serves” (Luke 22:26) and “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the last of all and the servant of all” (Mark 9:35).

            So the husband is called to serve, just as Christ ministers to the church. In the Orthodox marriage ceremony, the husband is reminded to “feed his wife, though he is hungry; give her to drink, though he is thirsty; and to clothe her, though he goes naked”. Do you have any objection to a husband exercising servant leadership in the manner of Christ?

            “…black people should be the slaves of white people…”
            Where does the Bible say that?

          • petej

            If the husband is called to serve shouldnt he be cleaning the church and the woman be preaching?

            I don’t believe the Bible says black people should be slaves, but I don’t believe it says women should be either.

          • Dominic Stockford

            I think you need to grow up a bit, and move away from this teenage student method of debating.

          • Anna

            Church cleaners can be male or female. Women may preach the gospel, but church leadership is largely male.

          • petej

            JPC believe it is sinful for women to preach, teach or lead because they are inferior. I disagree. I believe women are of equal worth to men.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Ephesians 5:22, Colossians 3:18, 1 Peter 3:1, Ephesians 5:24. Just for starters. Now, please tell me, why do you reject the letters of both Peter and Paul? And on what do you actually base your Christian faith if you refuse to accept the Bible’s clear teaching?

          • petej

            I know those verses well, but if the Anglican principle that no verse can contradict another is correct then they cannot be made to say that women are inferior to men. There is no male or female in the kingdom.

          • Chefofsinners

            And what of believing that husbands should love their wives as Christ loved the church?

          • petej

            I don’t believe that love is about dominance. Christ does not give us the things he can’t be bothered, or doesn’t want to do. He doesn’t order us about. He doesn’t treat us as inferior. He invites us to share in his mission.

  • Sarky

    He’s in it!!!

  • Not been watching it and will catch up on BBC iplayer at some point.

  • Manfarang

    Where is Mrs. Proudie?
    Is she taking the waters in Bad Godesberg?

    • Anton

      She said about a month ago that a close relative had just died. In the absence of notification from her or from his Grace that she is giving up her column, we may assume she will return after a period of mourning.

  • petej

    Their beliefs are really bizarre to me

    That having an established church is heresy and that the parish system is unworkable (then why join the cofe in the first place and why not now leave?)

    That women are inferior to men

    That LGBTI people are not welcome to worship God (and are deluded!)

    That opposing same sex marriage is more important than belief in Jesus (David Holloway implied this in Radio Fours Sunday programme – I hope he didn’t mean it)

    My view is that decades of isolation from the wider Christian community have drawn them towards cultism.

    Having said that I believe that the church of God welcomes all (even me!). My hope is that the Church of England just lets them get on with it.

    • Navarth

      These invented categorisations “LGBTI” (how many more labels will you invent?) are nothing more than a deconstruction of the human self – and in particular self-restraint – and at the same time jettisoning history, tradition and of course all moral values. It is classical Gramscian Marxism: the shock of the new. You obviously cannot be a Christian and at the same time identify with your genitals – because Christianity presupposes free will. Laughably, proponents of gender identity always assert that they are ‘born that way’; thus denying the possibility of change: ergo free will.

      • petej

        Yes they are invented labels that describe real human experience

        Gay and lesbian mean people who are attracted to the same sex and not attracted to the opposite sex.

        Bisexual means people who are attracted to both sexes to a greater or lesser extent

        Trans means those who experience being a different gender than their physical sex or gender assigned at birth

        Intersex means those who are not physically distinctly male or female.

        There is no reason to treat lgbti people differently to anyone else. Just as there is no reason to treat men and women differently to anyone else. When women or lgbti people are treated less well, it is the people treating them less well who are defining them by their (perceived inferior) genitals.

        I believe that *all* may be saved!

        • Navarth

          Bruce Jenner is not a woman! I refuse to be told that a lie is the truth. And that is what gender identity politics is; an imposition of lies upon society and the removal of free speech.

          • Dominic Stockford

            He is a man who has had his body mutilated.

          • petej

            Well then you agree with JPC

        • Dominic Stockford

          You’ve clearly made up that last belief with nothing whatsoever to justify it.

          “…if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20

          • petej

            All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and are justified freely by his grace.

            Whosoever believes in him shall not perish but be born to eternal life.

            It’s kind of Christianity 101 that all may be saved.

          • Dominic Stockford

            People will go to hell.

          • petej

            I think an awful lot of people are already there. Jesus has the power to save them all

          • Cressida de Nova

            “Hell is empty and all the devils are here”

          • Navarth

            I was under the impression that Universalism was a serious heresy. It certainly isn’t Christianity 101…

          • petej

            ‘may be saved’ is not ‘will be saved’

          • Navarth

            And what would one have to do *not* to be saved? Otherwise, the charge stands.

          • petej

            What charge?!

            The Bible clearly states that faith in Jesus Christ and his resurrection is sufficient for salvation and that anyone who does this will be able to have confidence in their salvation.

            Do you disagree?

          • Navarth

            I believe in sin, if that’s what you mean…Christianity 101.

          • petej

            I believe in Jesus

            The Bible says that those who trust in the law are under a curse.

          • Navarth

            Do you acknowledge sin and need for repentance?

          • Navarth

            Yes, it appears that confession and absolution are still sacraments in the Anglican Church, not to mention the Catholic Church. People also used to go in for penance in the old days. Not so much nowadays; no it’s now all about gender identity and narcissism, “me, me, me”, “I’m special”. That kind of thing.

          • petej

            You know I do! “All have sinned…”

            Do you acknowledge salvation through faith in Jesus Christ?

          • Navarth

            So you don’t believe that publicly rejecting gender identity and Leftist discourse should be criminalised? That would be a good start…

          • petej

            I don’t think anyone should be defining themselves by their gender, but I don’t think we should criminalise those who do.

            I broadly agree with the level of free speech that we have in the UK and Im a bit of a leftie myself. Scripture pushes you towards social justice so it is very difficult not to be if you read your bible regularly. I don’t think we should be criminalising speech unless it is inciting violence.

        • Navarth

          What you saying is a form of idolatry in which human experience is elevated above Christian anthropology.

          • petej

            I don’t see how!

            I haven’t said that such experience is elevated above ‘Christian’ (actually a certain type of Christian) anthropology only that it exists.

            Just because people experience being blind does not necessarily mean that they are blind or that God intends them to be blind.

          • Navarth

            In Christian anthropology there is no such thing as “LBGTI people”. There are no “gay Christians”. There are no “blind Christians”. There are only Christians; as in those who at least attempt to follow Christ’s precepts or believe that they should be carried out. A pertinent example for you is chastity, which is rendered obsolete by your apparent belief that individuals’ (in my view pathological) subjective mental fixations should free them from self-restraint or objective responsibility for their actions.

            Your invented categories – obviously derived from Kinsey and Cultural Marxism – make no sense in Christian anthropology – any more than do the terms “Black Christian” or “White Christian”. Other than to introduce a divisive worldly heterodoxy. You would not introduce these classifications unless you attached a great value to them. Hence the idolatry: QED.

          • petej

            Actually scripture includes references to blind people, including at least one man born blind who Jesus heals.

            I have not said that experiencing being lgbti means freedom from restraint – in fact I have said the opposite.

            Please read what I have actually written before attacking me!

  • Typhoon Tina

    While his Church burns, Rabbi Welby has more important things on his mind.

    *Archbishop of Canterbury prays at Western Wall with UK chief rabbi

    At Yad Vashem visit, head of Church of England stresses imperative to fight anti-Semitism, calls it ‘the root of all racism’ within European culture.*
    http://www.timesofisrael.com/archbishop-of-canterbury-prays-at-western-wall-with-uk-chief-rabbi/

    I’m going Orthodox.

    • CliveM

      What’s the problem you have with what he said?

    • Typhoon Tina

      Looks interesting;

      ‘Welcome to the Orthodox Parish of St. Cuthbert!

      We serve Orthodox Christians from many different countries.
      Christians from this country too have increasingly found a home with us and become Orthodox Christians.
      They have found in its distinctive worship and its unchanged and unchanging beliefs and way of life the fullness of the ancient Christian Faith, carefully guarded and nurtured since Apostolic times.
      We are within The Patriarchate of Constantinople, part of the Archdiocese of Parishes of the Russian Tradition in Western Europe, the deanery of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.’
      https://orthodoxsheffield.com/

    • Hi

      Maybe Archbishop Welby was praying at the Kotel because he was following in his faiths Jewish founders , i.e. Jesus of Nazareth, Peter , Paul , James etc ? They did go to the Beit HaMikdash?

      • Typhoon Tina

        Yes, Jesus was executed, as was Saint James the Apostle (44AD), Saints Paul and Peter fled (eventually) to Rome.

        • Hi

          Your god is a Jew. Yes or no?

          • carl jacobs

            She’s a Nazi.

  • Sybaseguru

    Blame it on Brexit.

    As we will be looking for free trade deals around the world it looks like Jesmond got there first. As David (see post) suggests, there is no reason to have Bishops as protected posts – lets have a bit of competition to drive up quality (as in the 1970’s car industry) and we will get rid of the ones who prefer their own secular voices to Gods.

  • Typhoon Tina

    Do you think Welby should visit Mecca and worship Islam by licking the Kaaba stone, like the Muslims?

    • CliveM

      I thought I wasn’t worthy of a reply?

      Muslims walk around it in an anti clockwise direction, and kiss it, they don’t lick it.

      So your question is a nonsense.

      • Typhoon Tina

        Okay clearly you’re a troll.
        Byee.

        • CliveM

          Just because you can’t answer a simple question or come up with a meaningful response doesn’t make me a troll.

          But if it helps you live with your inadequacies…………..

          • Cressida de Nova

            Of course you are not a troll .You are one of the few nice men on this blog. She does not know you.

          • CliveM

            Thank you Cressida, that’s very kind.

    • Hi,

      Given that the Beit HaMikdash is nothing like Mecca and” licking kaaba stone” [ Edit :which Muslims don’t actually do btw, no more than Christians are “vampiric “for holy communion] :

      “As for foreigner who does not belong to your people Israel but has come from a distant land because of your name— for they will hear of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm—when they come and pray toward this temple, then hear from heaven, your dwelling place. Do whatever the foreigner asks of you, so that all the peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you, as do your own people Israel, and may know that this house I have built bears your Name.”

      He stood and blessed the whole assembly of Israel in a loud voice, saying:

      “Praise be to the L-rd, who has given rest to his people Israel just as he promised. Not one word has failed of all the good promises he gave through his servant Moses. May the L-rd our God be with us as he was with our ancestors; may he never leave us nor forsake us. May he turn our hearts to him, to walk in obedience to him and keep the commands, decrees and laws he gave our ancestors. And may these words of mine, which I have prayed before the L- rd, be near to the L-rd our God day and night, that he may uphold the cause of his servant and the cause of his people Israel according to each day’s need, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the L-rd is God and that there is no other. And may your hearts be fully committed to the L-rd our God, to live by his decrees and obey his commands, as at this time.”

      1 Kings 8:41-43 & 56-63

      • Typhoon Tina

        Erm no.
        That is Old Testament written several hundred years before Christ. You are confusing your religion with Christianity.
        The old ‘Temple’ has no significance in Christianity.

        From that time on Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and that He must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.
        Matthew 16;21

        The Jews then said to Him “what sign have to show us for doing this?” Jesus answered them, “Destroy this Temple and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “it has taken forty-six years to build this Temple, and will you raise it up in three days?” But He spoke of the Temple of his body”
        John 2; 18-21

        Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. But he answered them, “You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.”
        As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray.
        Matthew 24; 1-4

        Christ is the Temple. It’s why Christians have Holy Communion, and not sacrifice of animals in the Temple, for the Remission of Sins.

        • Hi

          I’m a Jew for Judaism and I’m simply noting your your god -Jesus was or is apparently a Jew , who according to Christian scripture worshipped at the Temple. Jesus didn’t worship in Mecca, a Christian Orthodox church or the Vatican. But with Jews. You clearly have a problem with a Christian leader such as Welby worshipping where your god worshipped. And a problem with thinking that fighting against antisemitism isn’t important. You also called Clive a troll. He’s more a better reflection of Christianity than you are.

        • “That is Old Testament written several hundred years before Christ. ”

          This is typical of Christians. I’ve met so many , if not all , Christians who cherry pick and pick n choose bits of the “old testament” when it suits… yet when it doesn’t fit the Christian narrative ( or more accurately whatever pet peeve they have) it’s “oh that’s ‘old testament’ “.

  • Dominic Stockford

    Well, I for one welcome this event. I know many who prefer the style of the CofE, but hate its heresies with a passion, and have had enough of the ungodly and unbiblical compromises that they are forced into if they are to continue to pastor to their flocks. This is the first step to a new Reformation. Now we need a new Cranmer. Maybe this man is he.

  • Anton

    Go ask Alice…

  • David Waters

    Seriously, who gives a toss about bishops, ordinations and such irrelevant hangovers from pre-Reformation days? If they all resigned and were not replaced, the world and the Church of Jesus Christ would be in a better place.