The following is an endnote from an earlier essay titled When Did the Church Begin? The endnote illustrates one way Catholicism encourages a pro-life philosophy more than Protestantism, but the essay provides context.
It is important to reiterate that the Catholic Church considers Pentecost to be the birth of the Church in that the Holy Spirit was poured out, and that it is “the beginning of the Church’s mission” (see, Pope John Paul II; The Council’s Decree Ad Gentes, available at vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/audiences/alpha/data/aud19890920en.html as of January 12, 2014), and that its birth was preceded by its conception, which was real. The Catholic Church’s view is reflected in its pro-life philosophy: The Catholic Church, like a child, existed before it was born, and its conception is recognized as real. The analogy also applies to most of Protestantism, in that, only until recently, the Protestant sects were overwhelmingly pro-choice. In other words, Catholic theology and philosophy is consistent (Church and human conception equals existence) and Protestantism is not consistent (Church conception does not equal existence; human conception currently equals existence). The Protestant Church of Christ has eluded much of Protestant pro-choice history, but has continued to be influenced by Protestantism in other pro-life / pro-death areas, such as contraception and capital punishment.
This essay simultaneously answers two semi-related questions readers have sent me, and it shows how the Protestant Church of Christ’s (CofC) preference for anti-Catholic doctrine is more attractive than the purity of God’s written word. The questions are summarized as:
1) Which Bible version does the [Protestant] Church of Christ use?
2) How do Catholics view Mary in light of Mark 3:20,21 – in how Jesus’ family thought He had lost His mind?
The CofC has changed its own understanding of the word “denomination”; it implies that its own autonomous (congregational) structure is somehow immune to Protestant disunity. The CofC loudly disparages the “denominational” or “religious” world around it (and claims that the CofC is not part of it), but the CofC’s reliance on both Catholic and Protestant labor can only be ignored by the most ardent ideologue. For if there were no Catholic and Protestant labors, the CofC could never: A) Claim the Bible as Scripture, B) Use Protestant-created Bible versions as its holy writ, and then, although unknowingly, C) Acquiesce to modern Protestant theologies. Continue reading →
This stream of consciousness isn’t about anybody specific; it’s about the Protestant Church of Christ’s (CofC’s) overall ecclesiological insecurity. Note: Some of the language I use is in-house CofC jargon that some Catholics might find odd, and, as usual with my writings, this might take some time for CofC-ers to digest and understand.
As those in the “religious world” look forward to the celebration of Jesus’ birth, as they’re more open to accept the gospel, and as they’re more willing to live like Christ, many members of “the Lord’s church” are disturbed, are complaining and protesting Christmas. Could it be the CofC has misapplied its disparaging label of “religious world” and its own self-given descriptor as “the Lord’s church”? Continue reading →
One thing that drew me from the Restorationist Churches of Christ (CofC) to the Catholic Church of Christ was the absolute reasonableness and cohesion of Catholic theology. Throughout this website I’ve addressed the CofC’s best arguments for its “Apostasy Theory” and also its attack on Christian Marriage, and now I will illustrate—again—the absolute reasonableness and cohesion of Catholic theology by bringing both subjects together. I will show how fidelity to the sacraments offers clues as to which body—Catholic or Protestant/Restorationist—is the real Church of Christ. Continue reading →
The CofC offen brings up one verse (or two) that is meant to prove how the Catholic Church’s priests are illegitimate. The third Chapter of First Timothy says elders must be “the husband of one wife.” I explained the meaning of that verse here and how it in no way damages the historical Catholic understanding of the qualifications of priesthood. There are more — and more important — characteristics of a valid elder that the CofC overlooks. And when those details are considered, it becomes clear as to which “Church of Christ” is the real Church of Christ.
• If the Protestant Church of Christ (CofC) believes it’s the New Testament Church, and
• If the CofC believes it has valid priests (elders), and
• Every elder in the New Testament was ordered through the hierarchy of the Church,
• And the CofC elders are all self-appointed or communally appointed,
• Then the CofC is not the New Testament Church with valid elders.
• If the CofC believes it’s the New Testament Church, and
• If the CofC believes it has valid elders, and
• The New Testament commands Christians to obey their elders,
• Yet the CofC, at some point in the past, was “restored” by rebelling against established elders, and appointed new elders,
• Then the CofC is not the New Testament Church with valid elders.
I recently mentioned how some traditional members of the Protestant Church of Christ (CofC) are rightly struggling to maintain sect-wide orthodoxy regarding baptismal regeneration. However, it seems to me that the CofC’s inability to understand pouring as a proper mode for Baptism is one reason why the heresy is growing in popularity.
I’ve covered every biblical passage that aids the CofC’s understanding of proper modes and eligibility for Baptism throughout this website (available in book form here). I’ve also shown how the CofC’s own arguments, when studied, actually supports the Catholic understanding: that both immersion and pouring are proper modes for Baptism. It seems to me the CofC could better defend its traditional acceptance of baptismal regeneration if it would consider how Scriptural language and imagery work together. Continue reading →
This post’s title is a nod to America’s “culture wars” (which seem to become more of an outrageous outrage this time of year), not to any sort of malice.
Protestantism’s inattention to the Bible’s input about Hanukkah is an indication of which position is in fact more “biblical”. As a reminder, the Catholic Canon (the Bible’s “Table of Contents”) is different than the Protestant Canon; and the Catholic Rule is that both Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture are equally intended by God as divine revelation while the Protestant Rule is that of “sola Scriptura” – that the Protestant “Bible alone” is intended to provide all that is necessary for salvation and holy living. (I’ve included links to most of my posts about “Rule of Faith” at the end if you’d like to learn more.)
• "Your website is a troll." "You son of Satan."
-Scott J. Shifferd, Dean Road Church of Christ
• "Pax [(he thinks "pax" means "Pat" and not "peace")] cannot do us no harm and that why he wont fly to Martinsville not unless we foot he bill [to debate me on my television show]. . . . Really now I just want you to man up and bring your false doctrine to the airwaves but You and me know that wont happen because all you can do is play book writer and site master. You take that book momey Buy a plane tickey then we post it all on youtube how about that?"
-Johnny Robertson, founder of Church of Christ WDTBS Television Show
• "You are not a model of ethicality."
-Neal Pollard, Bear Valley Church of Christ; instructor at Bear Valley Bible Institute
• "Patrick Vandapool you will pay for your crimes against God." "You and your Church are condemned, better accept the Gospel and leave your Church before you die in your sins. you are an alien sinner!" "Your brainwashed." "Your site is a propaganda site." Your not a true Christian." "Your a fool... . I never called you a fool."
-John Riddle; "well tranned priest of the Lord's Church"
• "Are you an unmarried man under 25? Your writing style and wisdom match such a profile."
-Steve Rudd, Hamilton Church of Christ; founder of CofC propaganda website bible.ca
• "You have to be the most immature person that I've ever "met" in WordPress, and that includes the atheists, by which in overwhelming numbers show more common courtesy and respect that you. Are you 10 years old? ...if that's what your readers enjoy then it says as much about them as it does you."
-Eugene Adkins, Keltonburg Church of Christ