God’s forgotten Word 5 Lost Lawbook 4 The ‘Catholic’ church

In God’s forgotten Word 4 Lost Lawbook 3 Early digressions and Constantinic revolution we have seen that the Roman empire manage to bring the Greek-Roman culture and its traditions into the religion of the growing group of followers of Christ and how at Constantinopel in 325 a big party of Christians agreed to the three-une god.

The Catholic church

Faith was since that time ‘Catholic’ (kata = under, and holos = whole) and for the same reason as before paganism: the emperor wanted unity in his empire. Freedom of belief but led to group formation, and unity required in the Kingdom, according to the former view, also unity of worship. Verduin shows that the result was that the doctrine of the gospel was gradually adapted to the needs of the sacred character. House churches, as we find in the New Testament, were banned; they would only lead to dissident groups. Every one was obliged to worship in basilicas built everywhere.

English: Modern Baptism in a Catholic Church

Modern Baptism in a Catholic Church (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Baptism as a voluntary act of accession was replaced by infant baptism; After all, every citizen of the Empire was now a member. Baptism by immersion was replaced by a sacramental sprinkling for practical reasons (according to a contemporary writer: a triumph of common sense). The elders of the communities (Greek: presbuteroi) were bombed priests, like the Roman community, after all she had known for centuries. The Bishop of Rome inherited the ancient pagan title Pontifex Maximus = chief mediator (in pagan Rome was the bridge over the Tiber vital to their economy, and therefore the object of pagan magic and worship). The Lord’s Table, used for the Lord’s Supper was transformed into an altar. Bread and wine were transformed into a sacrifice that was commissioned by the priest, and because the Roman was accustomed to consume that sacrifice was the symbol of Christ’s flesh and blood are declared to be real flesh and blood. And the whole was declared sacramentum’, a word that also comes from the ancient pagan religious practices.

English: Church tower This is the tower of Bur...

Church tower This is the tower of Burntisland Parish Church which is built on a square plan unique in Scotland with people sitting on all four sides of the church, with the pulpit and communion table in the centre of the church. The church buildings was one of the first to be built in Scotland after the reformation. It reflects the reformers belief that the preaching of the bible, baptism and the Lord’s Supper were all to be celebrated in the midst of the people of God. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

No wonder that Bible believers saw the church from that time as a fallen church, and so it is also presented in the book of Revelation (see Chapter 24 “witness”). The church itself was able to perform all sorts of supposedly scriptural evidence for the turnaround. And over time silenced the protests because Scripture carefully out of the hands of the people (and even from the hands of the lower clergy) was held. Where it helped that the Bible was written in Latin and the people, at least in the Middle Ages, often could not read.

 

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Preceding article: God’s forgotten Word 4 Lost Lawbook 3 Early digressions and Constantinic revolution

Original Dutch version /Originele Nederlandse tekst: Gods vergeten Woord 5 Verloren Wetboek 4 De ‘katholieke’ kerk

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  • Lord’s Day or Sabbath Day (theologicallyspeaking.com)
    When Christians think of Sundays they often think of it as day of rest. Some even think of the day as a Sabbath day. But where does this idea come from? When and why did Christians begin meeting on Sundays and did they think of Sunday as a replacement for the Saturday Sabbath that Jews were accustomed to observing?
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    Sunday gatherings do not rule out meetings on other days and likely existed peaceably alongside Sabbath observance for many believers. There is no evidence from the New Testament that the day replaced or rivaled Sabbath observance or that it had any connection to the Fourth Commandment at all. It seems completely tied to the resurrection. We see the two existing side by side as Paul addresses a church made up of Jewish and Gentile Christians in Romans 14:5.
  • What Happens at the Lord’s Supper (withmeagrepowers.wordpress.com)
    I’ve written a short blog piece at Bible Study and the Christian Life on what happens at the Lord’s Supper. It builds off the Last Supper as a redefinition of the Passover, and uses a modern analogy to help us think correctly about it.
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    Through the centuries there has been considerable debate about how exactly these elements relate to the physical body and blood of Jesus. The Roman Catholic Church has taught that the elements change (“transubstantiate”) into the actual body and blood of Jesus—something Martin Luther also maintained. Other churches have taught that Christ’s body and blood are united (“consubstantiate”) to the elements, or that the elements are purely symbolic and only prompt the believer to reflect on the death of Jesus.
  • “Shocking Beliefs of C.S. Lewis” ~ curated by Josie Hauer Ed.D. (UTS’90) (utsalumni.org)
    Unfortunately, many evangelicals are quick to discount — and even damn — their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ over alleged doctrinal trespasses, even if those same brothers and sisters hold to the historical orthodox creeds (Apostle’s Creed, Nicene Creed, etc.). Such discounting and damning can always be avoided and it serves no one on the Kingdom side of the aisle.
  • Listen: Christian Life, Part 3 (The History of Christianity #66 with Daniel Whyte III) (blackchristiannews.com)
    When I became a believer in Jesus Christ, I somehow had the false idea that Christianity began when I got saved. I had no concept of the hundreds of years of history that Christianity had gone through since the time of Jesus Christ over 2,000 years ago. I have found that many believers, young and old, have the same false idea. The purpose of this broadcast is to dispel this notion by sharing with listeners the history of Christianity from the ministry of Jesus Christ all the way up until the present day in an easy-to-understand format. You don’t have to worry: this is not a lecture. This is a look at the basic facts and figures of Christian history that every believer and every person needs to be aware of.
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    Worship was one point at which Christians of all social classes had a common experience. As we reconstruct that experience, we must rely mostly on documentsleft behind by Christian leaders. But, since common Christians partook of the same services, here we have a rare glimpse at the life of all Christians.We are told in the book of Acts that from the very beginning the early church had the custom of gathering on the first day of the week for the breaking of bread – the Eucharist or Lord’s Supper. The reason for gathering on the first day of the week was that this was the day of the resurrection of the Lord. Therefore, the main purpose of this service of worship was not to call the faithful to repentance, or to make them aware of the magnitude of their sins, but rather to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus and the promises of which that resurrection was the seal. For this reason, Acts describes those gatherings as happy occasions: they “ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people.” Those early communion services did not focus their attention on the events of Good Friday, but rather on those of Easter. A new reality had dawned, and Christians gathered to celebrate that dawning and to be participants in it.
  • Proclaim the Lord’s Death (christianmotivations.weebly.com)
    Jesus died once for all our sins—past, present and future. (Hebrews 10:12) His work is perfectly perfect and completely complete, so He doesn’t have to die for us again. Today, we proclaim His death simply by partaking of the Lord’s Supper.
    Every time you partake of the bread and wine, you declare to the principalities and powers of darkness that the Lord’s death avails for you. Every time you partake, you are saying that because Jesus has been judged and punished in your place, you cannot be judged and punished. Because Jesus died young in your place, you will live long. And because He conquered death and stripped the devil of his powers, you will not be defeated. The victory is already yours!
  • New Lutheran Congregation church forming in Hamilton (ravallirepublic.com)
    According to Rawson, LCMC is an association “of Lutheran congregations and individuals who are free in Christ, accountable to one another, rooted in the canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments and the Lutheran Confessions, working together to fulfill Christ’s Great Commission to go and make disciples of all nations. It was founded in 2000 with 31 congregations joining – 833 congregations in 14 countries; 716 in the USA and 31 in Montana.”
  • ‘Reformation Day’? Nope. ‘Reformations Days’? Yup. (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
    In 1515 while he was Pastor of the village Church in Glarus, Huldrych Zwingli began to call into question the dependence of the Church on the teachings of the Scholastics. He also questioned the value of the Vulgate for preaching and began earnest study of the Greek New Testament. There, memorizing the letters of Paul (in Greek) he discovered the Gospel which would come to feature so prominently in his Reforming efforts: Salvation is by grace, through faith, and not through works as proclaimed by the Scholastic theologians. By 1519, when he moved to Zurich to become the Pastor of the Great Minster, Zwingli was already well on his way to Reforming the worship of the Church and the administration of the ‘Sacraments’. In short order, within a few years, the Mass was abandoned and replaced by the ‘Lord’s Supper’ and the fixation of the Church on images was denounced and those images removed in due course.

About Christadelphians

Free Christadelphians or Brothers and sisters in Christ, living in Belgium, European Union. - Vrijë Christadelphians of Broeders en zusters in Christus wonende in België in de Europese Unie.
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