Saturday, November 3, 2007

TurretinFan - Answers to List Three

Answers to List Number 3

1. Dead Men Hold No Debates

Godith pointed out:
I Cor. 11:19--
For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.

Godith makes an excellent point, and this verse should have been included in the original post. While heresy is itself a bad thing, it is a fact of life for true churches that they will have to deal with heresy from time to time.

2. Is Basil the Great Your Father?

Lucian asserted: “Yes, he is.” One wonders whether Lucian would have agreed with Basil about the procedure of not resting on tradition alone.

3. Is Athenasius [sic – as originally posted] your Father?

Lucian corrected the present author’s spelling of Athanasius’ name. Thanks Lucian.

4. No Strength in Numbers

Lucian provided the following list of alleged membership numbers:
Catholics are 1.2 Billion.
Protestants are 600 Million.
Orthodox are 250 Million.
Monophysites are 60 Million.

I don’t think that those numbers significantly affect the point of the post.

5. Moderator Note: Audience Comments
One anonymous commenter asserted that “this is a very disorganized debate”
Sadly, this is somewhat true. There is a roadmap post that tries to organize things, as well as a “sorting it out” sidebar. The ultimate solution would be to customize blogger a lot more than it currently is designed to be customized.

6. Moderator Note: Audience Comments

EgoMakarios wrote:

Basically, tradition lead to spiritual dyslexia, whereby the person reading the Scriptures is unable to see the text as it actually is. The Catholic reading in Matthew 1:25 that Joseph didn't know Mary "till she brought forth her firstborn son" reads in place of that "ever." The Protestant reading Colossians 2:12 that you are buried with Christ in baptism "in which you are also raised with Him" sees instead "in which is a mere symbol or prior spiritual resurrection." The paedobaptist reading the next portion of that same verse, that it is "by faith in the operation of God" reads instead "without faith in the operation of God." Their traditions blind them to what Scripture really says. Tradition causes spiritual dyslexia whereby they do not any longer see the words that appear in Scripture but rather see the words that would appear if their tradition were not a lie from Satan.

Actually, as much as I disagree with EM about some of the examples he provided, his basic point is correct. Our traditions (whether we make them a binding authority, as “Orthodox” does and as the RCC does; or whether we simply make them a assistant authority, as most of the rest of us do) can sometimes blind us, particularly if we are unaware that something is part of our tradition. You’d be surprised, perhaps, how many people are shocked to discover that there is no apple mentioned in the account of the fall of man.

7. Moderator Note: Audience Comments
Rhology commented: “Audience questions - good call.”

Thanks, Rhology!

8. Moderator Note: Audience Questions Closing
Manuel Culwell wrote: “should we revise our bibles so as to add the heretical creeds of men with the same unscriptual acceptance of unfounded traditions that should be accpted because a majority claims it is truth or should we stick to scripture alone? By the way,would we be wrong in doing so?”

a) No, we should not revise our Bibles to include creeds, heretical or not.
b) Majority is not the way to determine the truth, but the only time that kind of assertion has been made more or less explicit in this debate was in “Orthodox”’s discussion of the Great Schism: even Vincent’s near unanimity is not just a simple majority rule. As a practical matter, it seems that “Orthodox” and the commenter “Lucian” want to make acceptance of representations of God in worship a matter of majority rule, but Scripture stands in opposition.
c) Of course we would be wrong in doing so, because we are not divinely inspired to write Scripture.

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