Thursday, February 6, 2020

I : With Ignatius of Antioch and Ron Aller : Before I Get In & My First Response

With Ignatius of Antioch and Ron Aller : I : Before I Get In & My First Response · II : Two Days Ago / One Day Ago · III : Less than One Day Ago · IV : Epilogue

Comments debate took place under:

Dare We Hope? Why I STOPPED Believing in Universal Salvation!
LizziesAnswers | 3.II.2020

It started with "Ignatius of Antioch" giving some context on Origen not necessarily being condemned or having been for universal salvation.

Ignatius of Antioch
People who think Origen's anathema is authentic and he was a universalist need to read all his writings from the same work and after like this;

"It is not possible to receive forgiveness of sins without baptism" (Exhortation to the Martyrs 30 [A.D. 235]).

Origen said, "But since the discourse has reminded us of the subjects of a future judgment and of retribution, and of the punishments of sinners, according to the threatenings of holy Scripture and the contents of the Church's teaching, that when the time of judgment comes, everlasting fire, and outer darkness, and a prison, and a furnace, and other punishments of like nature, have been prepared for sinners — let us see what our opinions on these points ought to be." (De Principiis, Book 2, verse 1, [230 AD])

Origen said, "If the expression can be used, do they come down from the upper world to this hell. For that hell to which the souls of the dead are con­ducted from this world, is, I believe, on account of this distinction, called the lower hell by Scripture, as is said in the book of Psalms: You have deliv­ered my soul from the lowest hell. (De Principiis, Book 4, verse 23 [230 AD])

Ron Aller
There is BUT ONE AUTHORITATIVE and ABSOLUTE version of history – the Word of God. All the rest is ‘human perspective’ and may be perfectly accurate and even ‘Spirit-led’. But there is no way to know that for certain. All historical study and conclusions are our best understanding, inquiry into and interpretation of the events and the information we have concerning them – Historie - Geschichte!

HOWEVER, as one studies Church History, it very soon becomes very evident that “mainstream Christianity” was often the seat of the HERESY and the “heretics” were the ones with whom we would agree. As a matter of fact, as Church History progresses through the centuries, it becomes more and more true that the “mainstream Christianity” is the seat of more and more “heresy” in doctrine and praxis. It is the “remnant” that is often 5 the “keeper of truth” and oftentimes the ones who pay very dearly for their adherence to what we would today consider to be “Orthodoxy.” Not only is that true, but as you study Church History you begin to realize that there were individuals – sometimes part of “mainstream Christianity” and sometimes not so much – who contributed some “good doctrine and praxis” to the Church while at the same time contributing some “bad doctrine and praxis” to the Church. Origen of Alexandria is one those key individuals. Even more so is Augustine of Hippo. Also, Pelagius may well be placed on that list – even though Augustine considered him a ‘rank heretic’ (the Augustine/Pelagius Controversy is one of the more ‘famous’ theological/doctrinal controversies of Church History). The point of this “hiatus” is to emphasize that the “orthodoxy” and the “heresy” in Church History – OUTSIDE THE NEW TESTAMENT– is often very difficult to discern. Oftentimes, the books on Church History are written from a certain ‘doctrinal/theological’ perspective. There are many that are excellent and very ‘sound’ theologically. But, it is important that every student of Church History be “ALERT” to theological/doctrinal biases of the person they are ‘reading’ or under whom they are studying. Sometimes it is necessary to go back to the original source material – as much as it is possible – in order to derive your own convictions about what an individual was saying. But again, even when reading “original documents” one must realize that they too are at best ‘copies and translations of copies’ and oftentimes far less attested and reliable than the many copies and translations that we have of the NT. This is not to discourage the study of Church History – quite the opposite. But it is a caveat that we all need to bear in mind.

Ignatius of Antioch
Sola Scriptura is a false unbiblical doctrine and a tradition of men.

The "Word of God" is spoken utterance given from his flesh from the mind of God. "Logos" is not like the English word for "word" it is speech only. Scripture is "graphe" or "grapho."

2 Peter 1:20 says that no teaching of scripture is for private interpretation which is why the Ethiopian Eunuch an educated read scripture and needed an interpreter in Acts 8:29-31. The Eunuch said he couldn't understand it on his own. 2 Thessalonians 2:15 says there two traditions we keep oral and Epistles. 1 Thessalonians 2:13 says we shouldn't even be around those who profess Christian but don't keep the tradition. Ultimately this is about the faith once delivered in Jude 1:3.

In Matthew 2:23 it says it was "spoken" through the prophets that Jesus "shall be called a Nazarene" which isn't in the Old Testament he was citing a tradition from God through prophets passed on orally. In Matthew 23:2-3 Jesus teaches a Jewish tradition as being valid he says to obey the people on the "chair" or "cathedra" in the Greek of Moses and obey them. There is no reference to them reading scripture and the judges or rulers chair undermines that view, not to mention Moses only wrote 5 books. In 1 Corinthians 10:4 St. Paul a rock that “followed” the Jews through the Sinai wilderness which is not found in the Old Testament. In 2 Timothy 3:8 he says, “As Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses” which names aren't the Old Testament or the related passage Exodus 7:8. In Acts 15:6–30 St. Peter lead the first council and with the Church authorities exercised Apostolic authority.

Sola Scriptura proof texts don't teach Sola Scriptura 2 Timothy 3:16–17 doesn't say, "only scripture" and if look at the context 2 Timothy 1:13–14; 2:2; 3:14 we can see St. Paul makes reference to oral tradition 3 times. In addition, the same author in Ephesians 4:11–15 it proves the sufficiency of pastors and teachers for the attainment of Christian perfection. In Ephesians 4, the Christian believer is equipped, built up, brought into unity and mature manhood, and even preserved from doctrinal confusion by means of the teaching function of the Church. This is a far stronger statement of the perfecting of the saints than 2 Timothy 3, yet it does not even mention Scripture. The other relevant verses are Matthew 23 verses 8 and 10 where Jesus says no one can teach or instruct. So how can you be Sola Scriptura without teachings your self or instructing your self or others on how to understand scripture or relying on someone breaking this command?

Ultimately Sola Scriptura is really a matter of cherry-picking, adopting later "traditions of men," reading into scripture with your theology, removal the full context and using a narrow window scripture. You can't read a single word of Koine Geek without tradition on what the words mean relying on mostly patristic writers from the early Church since the classics were written in earlier Greek and all complete works by them are from 7th to 13 century AD copies that were revised to modern Greek often by monks. In fact, not a single commentary from the 7th or 8th century in Latin or any other language exists on the Greek. You can't know what a "widows mite" is without a reference or where things in the Bible were without a map. Ultimately without tradition, you don't have the "Word of God" because you have never heard it then.

Concerning the early Church writers, you won't find anything said by an actual Father of the Church that contradicts one of the 7 Ecumenical Councils. There is no one who taught against dogma. All the things you oppose were in the Didache, the Epistle of Barabas, Clement of Rome's writings, Papias's work, Justin Martyr, Polycarp and Ignatius of Antioch's works. In addition, everything the Fathers say isn't dogma the bar to be dogma outside an Ecumenical Council is really high. To be dogma it must be attributed to the Apostles, Jesus, be all in agreement on an issue or having others silent but almost all in agreement. Jesus said in Matthew 16:18 that the Church would never die and your position requires it dying for as long as 1500 years. Hebrews 13:17 says to obey the leaders of the Church they're leaders.

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Ron Aller //As a matter of fact, as Church History progresses through the centuries, it becomes more and more true that the “mainstream Christianity” is the seat of more and more “heresy” in doctrine and praxis. It is the “remnant” that is often 5 the “keeper of truth” and oftentimes the ones who pay very dearly for their adherence to what we would today consider to be “Orthodoxy.” //

If the remnant had been a constant one, always revolving about same points of its internal theology, not just same criticism of Catholicism, you might have had a point, and other condition, if the constancy extended to time.

You can locally have and will have or already do have a situation where what's mainstream there and then is wrong. Example, by 1560, in Sweden it was very mainstream to be a Lutheran which is wrong.

But Christ left us a coherent doctrine, which includes the existence of a magisterium, of successors to his Apostles, and it also includes this magisterium has to be mainstream enough most of the time to actually teach the nations. As you may have guessed, I am referring to Matthew 28:16-20 for a description of Christ's Church which clearly doesn't match yours.

Remnant is Biblical, but a Church that's only "remnant-hopping" isn't. Remnant means remnant of sth larger and that larger thing is the Catholic Church as it has existed over near 2000 years.

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Ignatius of Antioch You are very correct in everything you say.

I hope you are not the kind of "association judgers" who consider Young Earth Creationism as "sola scriptura" when very clearly all Church Fathers were Young Earth, if not all Six-Literal-Days, Creationists.

That's why there is a difference between appealing to a remnant of Catholics who still are Young Earth Creationists (which even the larger today extant body was up to Vatican II, and including Dei Verbum, 1992 being some decades after this), and appealing to a remnant that hopes it resembles an earlier remnant which is hoped for as resembling an even earlier one, with the majority being always wrong, as Ron Aller does.

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Ron Aller "But there is no way to know that for certain. All historical study and conclusions are our best understanding, inquiry into and interpretation of the events and the information we have concerning them – Historie - Geschichte!"

If you mean the certainty which we have of faith dogma (including but not limited to any Bible verse rightly understood and translated for those not reading original languages), agreed, history is less certain ... but it is not uncertain as in being a guess over all the field.

Some things are more certain than others and sufficiently certain to include in what we base our world views on - otherwise we would not have a reason to believe in the Early Church or the Bible either.

This being so, I cannot consider that Novatians and Montanists, Albigensians and Waldensians, 17th C. Sabbatarian Anabaptists are all part of one same remnant or series of remnants, they cannot be one Church since they do not share one doctrine. The 17th C. Sabbatarian Anabaptist was not around in the day of the Novatians and the Montanist was not around in the day of the Albigensian. Therefore, if they are not one Church, which they aren't, they cannot be THE Church, which Christ promised survival for "all days even unto the consummation of all time".