Because the following arguments put forward by “KO” tread familiar Catholic canned responses to Sola Scriptura, I am going to respond to them publicly for our mutual edification.
Note: This article was written before the author’s conversion to Orthodoxy.
The scriptures do not say that they themselves are infallible or sufficient either. I cannot find sola scriptura or justification by faith alone or any other Protestant heretical doctrine in the Bible. They are just traditions.
Yes, the good-old fashioned “Protestant myths not found in the Bible” counter argument. Is it true?
Do the Scriptures say they are without error? In a sense, yes.
The Scriptures say of themselves that they come right from God’s mouth (2 Tim 3:16) and God is not a man that He lies, or changes His mind (Num 23:19). So, unless God can utter lies, we have to concede the Scripture is infallible based upon what it says about itself.
Being that Catholics obviously believe the Scriptures are infallible, what KO probably meant to say is that no where does it say the Scripture alone is infallible. This is why he asks where in the Bible does it says that the Bible is “sufficient.” After all, if the Bible never claims it is sufficient, then that at least leaves a door open for there being another authority which coupled with the Scripture is sufficient for faith, morals, and practice.
However, KO is wrong in even this. The Scriptures says of themselves in 2 Tim that they “are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim 3:15). So, if KO says the Scriptures are insufficient to give us knowledge capable of saving souls, then he would be speaking against the clear words of the Scripture.
Further,2 Tim says a little later that the Scriptures are “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work” (2 Tim 3:16-17). If the Scriptures equip the man of God for every good work, then that means there is nothing they do not equip men for. If someone in Greek was trying to convey the concept of sufficiency, 2 Tim 3:15-17 seems to get the job done.
Concerning justification by faith alone, that’s an easy one. “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Eph 2:8-9). Being that the Scripture says faith saves and excludes all other things pretty much settles the matter. Not surprising, the term “faith alone” though not in the Scripture (other than in James 2:24, speaking about a different matter) was found in the writings of Origen, Ambrosiaster, and Chrysostom just to name a few.
Catholic claim that James 2:24 “proves” that we are not saved by faith alone, but we need works. For what it is worth, the historical interpretations of James 2:24 for the first 1,000 years of the Church did not put forth such an idea. Interpreters from the 1st to 10th centuries sound like Protestant apologists reconciling James words so that they are consistent with the doctrine of faith alone so clearly elucidated in Paul’s writings.
Looking at one and the same sacrifice, James praised the magnificence of Abraham’s work, while Paul praised the constancy of his faith. But in reality the two men are saying exactly the same thing, because they both knew that Abraham was perfect in his faith as well as in his works, and each one merely emphasized that aspect of the incident which his own audience was most in need of hearing…Abraham had such a vibrant faith in God that he was ready to do whatever God wanted him to. This is why his faith was reckoned to him as righteousness, and it was in order that we might know the full meaning of this that God ordered Abraham to sacrifice his son. It was by his perfect accomplishment of God’s command that the faith which he had in his heart was shown to be perfect…The person who in faith honors the God and ruler of all has righteousness as his reward.
Clement of Rome wrote, “Abraham, who was called the friend of God, proved himself faithful by becoming obedient to the words of God” (1 Clem 10).
On the one hand, the blessed James says that Abraham was justified by works when he bound Isaac his son on the altar, but on the other hand Paul says that he was justified by faith, which appears to be contradictory. However, this is to be understood as meaning that Abraham believed before he had Isaac and that Isaac was given to him as a reward for his faith. Likewise, when he bound Isaac to the altar, he did not merely do the work which was required of him, but he did it with the faith that in Isaac his seed would be as numberless as the stars of heaven, believing that God could raise him from the dead…Abraham was justified not by works but by faith. For although he had done many good things, he was not called a friend of God until he believed, and every one of his deeds was perfected by faith…The person who in faith honors the God and ruler of all has righteousness as his reward.
Bishop Oecumenius wrote:
Abraham is the image of someone who is justified by faith alone, since what he believed was credited to him as righteousness. But he is also approved because of his works, since he offered up his son Isaac on the altar. Of course he did not do this work by itself; in doing it, he remained firmly anchored in his faith, believing that through Isaac his seed would be multiplied until is was as numerous as the stars (Commentary on James quoted in Ancient Christian Commentary on the Scripture, New Testament XI, p. 33).
So, now that we see KO is wrong on all counts so far, let us move onto a response to a comment I made. I said, “To not do as they [the Apostles] asked, or to do differently as they asked, is to disobey essentially their last Apostolic commands [to use the Scriptures to counter false doctrines].”
Why didn’t those apostles leave us with a list of the books that we were supposed to read? It’s so ridiculously embarrassing to say, “Go read the Holy Books”, and saying also that those books are not easy to interpret, and then, according to your interpretation, it amounts to “Go read the Holy Books which we won’t tell you which books are and we won’t tell you how to interpret, either, and we won’t leave anyone in our place to tell anything about that, either.”
One possible answer, because I do not pretend to know, is that God never left us a list of books. Maybe that’s the way He likes doing things. Before the coming of Christ, where was the infallible list of Scriptures? It does not exist.
So, what exactly does KO’s contention prove? I presume he is saying the Scriptures are useless without an infallible Canon that says exactly which books are in and which ones are out. But then, this would mean that until the Council of Carthage, no one knew how to be faithful Israelites or Christians. This of course, is much more “ridiculously embarrassing” from an intellectual standpoint than the historical position which always was that we have an infallible Scriptures with a fallible Canon.
I cited 2 Peter 1:12-2:1 as evidence that Peter wanted us to go to the Scriptures to settle doctrinal disputes, because that’s what it is all about. His response was:
2 Peter 1:12-2:1 Is talking about the confirmation of the Old Testament prophecies, and there you find that “no prophecy is of personal interpretation”.
The quip about “no prophecy is of personal interpretation” is a dig at Protestants who do not have an infallible Pope to tell them infallibly what the Scriptures mean. This I find a strange dig being that one of the apologetic escape hatches that Catholics use when their detractors dig up quotations from Popes that disagree with each other is that Popes sometimes offer their “private interpretations.”
Without getting lost in the weeds on that issue, let’s talk about 2 Peter 1:12-2:1. Certainly, KO is correct about verses 12 to 21. However, he makes the rookie mistake of not continuing to read, as the original Scriptures do not have chapter and verse divisions.
Peter writes, “I will always be ready to remind you of these things…And I will also be diligent that at any time after my departure you will be able to call these things to mind” (2 Peter 1:12, 15). “These things” were the Old Testament prophecies that were “made sure” to him by a direct revelation of the Father during the transfiguration.
But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. But [Greek says “there were moreover also”] false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves (2 Peter 1:20-21, 2:1).
So, Peter reminds his readers, just as false prophets arose in times of old (as one can see in the Scriptures that he asks everyone to read after his departure), false teachers will rise from among Christendom. They will introduce destructive heresies, denying the Master that the prophetic word, which the Father made more sure, told us about.
Catholics sometimes get so hung up about verse 20, that they do not even grasp what the entirety of Peter’s point even is. The ones teaching false doctrines reject the Scriptures which attest to the Savior, the Scriptures which Peter commends his readers to turn to in his absence.
KO continues that, “Almost the same goes for 2 Tm,” as in, 2 Tim is only about Old Testament prophecy or something like that. I am not really sure what KO is saying, to be honest.
However, I do know that right after Paul says the Scripture is sufficient and God-breathed he tells Timothy, “I solemnly charge you…preach the word” (2 Tim 4:1-2). What word? The words of the Scripture of course. That’s literally the next sentence after 1 Tim 3:17. Why preach the word? “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine” (2 Tim 4:3).
So, unlike KO’s solution to preventing heresy (go to the Pope and his “unprivate” interpretations!) Paul would have us go to the Scriptures. Clearly, Paul had a different view of ultimate authority than KO did, but obviously KO thinks the Scriptures are full of all sort of holes so Paul apparently left out the really important part in his last words to Timothy.
KO, wary of the implications of Sola Scriptura, wrote: “If that [Sola Scriptura] is so, the lone man in the woods can interpret as he sees fit.”
Not exactly. The lone man in the woods is not the authority. The Scripture is. Further, the Scripture teaches us to worship with other believers and be under instruction. So, to say anyone can discover their own personal truths as the logical outcome of Sola Scriptura is pure hypocrisy, because the Scripture actually mitigates against this.
I wrote that, “The sacred writings… are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” KO responded. “Oh, yes ‘you know those from whom you learned it’, so, learning from *people*…” Yet, KO glossed over the fact those people were Timothy’s mother and grandmother who likely taught him the Scriptures before Paul ever came along preaching the Gospel in his city. So, this actually mitigates against KO’s viewpoint.
Lastly, in KO’s quest to cut off his nose to spite his face, he ends his response hoping to make the Scriptures look like chopped liver:
If it were sufficient for faith, Arians and their ilk would be much welcome. If it were sufficient for morals, you wouldn’t find nudist or abortionist or gay churches galore. If it were sufficient for “true doctrine”, you wouldn’t find false doctrines being defended “based on the Bible”. I can defend Arianism from the Bible, so? If it were sufficient for practice, I could stop going to church and just make myself an altar at home, or just use the table, read some passages and celebrate the Lord’s Supper. The New Testament is anything but a ritual manual. And last but not least, the Bible doesn’t say it is sufficient. And that is sufficient reason for me to believe only in what the Bible says, and I believe (ops, I know) that the Bible doesn’t say it is sufficient, unless someone show me otherwise.
My response is that Arianism cannot be defended from the Bible. Further, Christians do not need a ritual manual because we are not pagans–rituals and incantations do not make us right with God.
In the words of Athanasius, the great defender of orthodoxy against the Arian heretics that controlled almost all the Bishoprics of the Roman world in his time (including Rome):
Vainly then do they run about with the pretext that they have demanded Councils for the faiths sake; for divine Scripture is sufficient above all things; but if a Council be needed on the point, there are the proceedings of the Fathers, for the Nicene Bishops did not neglect this matter, but stated the doctrines so exactly, that persons reading their words honestly, cannot but be reminded by them of the religion towards Christ announced in divine Scripture (De Synodis, 6).
The idea that the Scripture is insufficient and that having a view like Athanasius’ will inevitably lead us to Arian heresy is ahistorical. Athanasius inveighed against Arianism from the Scriptures, extolling their authority and sufficiency. Sadly, the largest church in the world today, and its apologists, do not do the same.
Craig – Concerning justification by faith alone, that’s an easy one. “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Eph 2:8-9). Being that the Scripture says faith saves and excludes all other things pretty much settles the matter.
CK – the question on what one must do to be saved was specifically asked. Please show me where the answer was faith alone. I see faith, repentance, baptism, the requirement to eat His body, but none of them alone will do.
When asked how one will judged show me where the answer is faith alone.
You should know by now that Catholics agree with Eph 2:8-9. Initial salvation is a gift but being members of the body of Christ comes with responsibilities. If you turn away from those responsibilities you will lose your salvation.
“the question on what one must do to be saved was specifically asked”
Sure: Believe on the Lord Jesus, then you and your household will be saved. Is there another prescription we should be aware of?
“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” 32 And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all that were in his house. 33 And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their wounds, and he was baptized at once, with all his family.
Then Paul baptized them at once. Surely they didn’t need to be baptized to be saved. Just believe!
16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
When Peter was asked the specific question on what one must do he responds in Acts 2:38:
37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
In Mt 19:16 Jesus is asked the same thing and He responds:
16 And behold, one came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?” 17 And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? One there is who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.”
Again when the question is specifically asked nowhere in the bible is the answer faith alone.
Your handling of those baptism texts is wrong and not relevant to the discussion, it is a non sequitur.
“the question on what one must do to be saved was specifically asked”
Sure: Believe on the Lord Jesus, then you and your household will be saved. Is there another prescription we should be aware of?
Craig – I asked for a specific situation where the question is asked and you answered with a verse where the question was not specifically asked. Yet you accuse me of giving an irrelevant answer.
Your theology forces you to ignore the plain answer and you accuse me of handling the baptism text wrong and not relevant to the discussion.
Why is it wrong? Because you say so. Why isn’t it relevant when I’m addressing a specific verse you quoted to support faith alone. Because you said so.
Don’t invite people to address your blog posts if don’t want to dialog. What a waste of time.
CK: “I asked for a specific situation where the question is asked and you answered with a verse where the question was not specifically asked.”
CK, if you are aware, the question “what must I do to be saved” was literally asked ad verbatim before the answer “believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and both you and your family will be saved.” Aren’t you concerned that you missed such a huge and obvious detail???
Me-You are right. Though you left out that Paul felt the need to baptize him at once. It doesn’t concern me because I agree that one must believe, just not alone. You asked if there’s something else you need to be aware of. I responded and your answer was
Craig-Your handling of those baptism texts is wrong and not relevant to the discussion, it is a non sequitur.
Me-You should heed your advice to KO and not be nasty. And how is it a non sequitur when you specifically asked if I wanted make you aware of of something else and the verses I quoted also answer the question?
So as I showed showed the question of what must one do to be saved has been asked several times and we must take all anwers into consideration. Btw there are others.
Aren’t you concerned that you missed all the other answers the bible gives when the question of what one must do to be saved?
What was “nasty” about the reply? I gave my answer, a Biblical answer, as to what we must do to be saved. Any inferences you draw (why did he baptize him so fast?) are not particularly convincing, because the Scripture does not explicitly say what you want it to say here.
Indeed, I would be concerned if I missed other answers to the question…however, I didn’t.
You are giving off a pompous attitude. One verse does not teach everything about salvation.
You disregarded what I wrote. I quoted MK 16:16 as support for why Paul baptized. He who believes and is baptized will be saved.
I also gave you MT 19:16 which does not mention baptism.
You just wave it away.
Also, I’m assuming you do understand where Catholics are coming from as in salvation is a process and not a one time event.
And you are aware that salvation is something that is attained and then not lost. But CK, you are making points all over the place. What is your point about the Rich Young Ruler? Why do you insist the baptism texts teach that the sacrament is a means of salvation? You’re going in too many different directions. Like I said, I’d debate you where I can speak and not retype everything. I think in speaking discussion can be kept more easily on point. If you do not want to do that, I’ll give you the last word as you are not addressing the content of what is written in the article.
This will be the last word but I’ll use it to point out how you aren’t even making an effort to understand what I’m writing.
This is what I wrote – Also, I’m assuming you do understand where Catholics are coming from as in salvation is a process and not a one time event.
This is your response – And you are aware that salvation is something that is attained and then not lost.
Me – I’m trying to inform but you are too focused on being antagonistic. We can’t dialogue if we don’t know where we are coming from. I was Just trying to keep us from talking past each other.
Wish you success with your blog.
Like I said, let’s talk it out typing is not working.
If you want my reply to your citations of those baptism texts, please see 11:30 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUsvKXLggdQ.
I’d be more than happy to debate you on the topic of baptism if you like, but I would prefer the vocal format, not typing.
Don’t have a video on my computer so tha is not an option.
You can call in, I just don’t like retyping arguments I have already typed a hundred times 🙂 You can call in from google, you don’t even need a real number if you have a mic for your computer.
“Athanasius inveighed against Arianism from the Scriptures”
Arius inveighed against Athanasius from the Scriptures, too. Was Arius “won over” by “scripture alone”? Certainly no! Even Calvin seems to concede that:
“Moreover, the consent of the ancient fathers clearly appears from this, that in the Council of Nice, no attempt was made by Arius to cloak his heresy by the authority of any approved author” (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/calvin/institutes.iii.xiv.html)
So Arius’ position lost because it didn’t have the assent of the Fathers, not because he didn’t argue from the Bible. In fact, he argued more from the Bible than his opponents. One can conclude the argument against Arius wasn’t only biblical. If you think you can refute an heresy based solely on the bible, but you have no authority, good luck to you. Go to a unitarian church and they’ll tell you that you’re wrong: from the bible. If you say the bible is the authority, good luck to you too, because so does every opponent of your trinitarian standpoint. You have absolutely no authority, and reason only goes so far.
It might help to actually read what Athansius wrote (i.e. look above the comments section.)
So you’re just supposing I’m illiterate. Why don’t you read Athanasius again?
No need to be nasty. You obviously did not read what was quoted in the article, it would answer your question.
My apologies, I thought your reply was to the Athanasius article. Then, you reply about Arius, that he proved his position from the Scripture, still does not prove your point. Do you really think that Unitarianism, Arianism, or any other heresy has Biblical merit? Athanasius taught that clearly they don’t. I will still recommend you read the Athanasius on the sufficiency of Scripture as he answers the Arian objections making the point that Scripture is sufficient, and Scripture does not teach Arianism.
That’s the problem. It doesn’t even matter what I think, what matters is how the world works. According to Arians, scripture teaches Arianism. They weren’t convinced by Athanasius’ arguments, otherwise a series of councils and a forceful and decisive imperial imposition wouldn’t be needed. Arians weren’t suppressed by argument alone.
Again, Athanasius would disagree with you, he argued explicitly that the Scripture does not teach Arianism.
Disagree with me? I’m not even arguing that your holy book teaches or disproves Arianism. All I’m saying is that “Arians weren’t suppressed by argument alone”. By the way, there’s a long comment below that hasn’t appeared yet.
One-sentence sarcastic rebuttals like “go read X”, “Your handling of those baptism texts is wrong and not relevant to the discussion, it is a non sequitur.” CK cites text after text of supporting biblical material (“faith, repentance, baptism, the requirement to eat His body,” and that is the response he gives you, citing one supporting verse and dutifully ignoring the others that contradict him. And he didn’t even mention Matthew 16.27, 18:3, 19:17-19, John 5:29, Mark 16:16… wow, I cannot even begin quoting deeds through which one will merit salvation (oh, no, he’ll babble we don’t merit salvation…) Just take a look: http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/saved.html Craig’s hierarchy of “faith better than works” crumbles.
Honestly, this response is confusing to me. I can respond with a bunch of random citations, I do not understand the point you are trying to communicate.
Wow, “random citations” — one opens them, and reads people will be saved by acts, and you call them random. If I responded like you, I might even say: “It might help to actually read the Bible”.
I don’t think your replies are coming off as very informational, but I think you are responding to an article you did not read, so I am not quite sure what your position is other than you don’t like Protestantism.
Your replies aren’t very informational either. I think you’re not responding with more than a flippant disregard. But I’m quite sure what your position is: you don’t like Catholicism.
You just ignored all the other passages on how one is saved (not by faith alone), quoted by CK and I, you say they’re “random citations”! You say our conclusions aren’t valid because they’re not explicitly biblical — although they’re more biblical than your few quotes. Seriously, if I were to examine this attitude from a neutral (atheist, Islamic, Buddhist, Shinto, animist, pagan) point of view (say, like http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/saved.html), I’d come to the conclusion that you’re sweeping the unwanted contrary evidence under the carpet, because, given the evidence in the Bible, there’s a whole lot of things you need to do to be saved (even if you squeeze those hundred and eighty into a dozen or so types).
Even atheists concede that “saved by faith alone” contradicts the bible. And as CK said, good luck with your blog.
Sweeping what evidence? You’re challenged to a debate then!
Man, biblical evidence that says nothing about faith alone, but says a lot about acts that save: Matthew 16:27, 18:3, 19:17-19, John 5:29, Mark 16:16… and the list goes on and on. Of course you have your way out of the literal interpretation of those verses, which you dutifully ignore. Anyway, the first level of interpretation must always be literal, if it makes sense.
You have to DO the will of the Father:
“It is not anyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” who will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but the person who does the will of my Father in heaven”. (Mt 7:21)
You have to endure to the end:
“You will be universally hated on account of my name; but anyone who stands firm to the end will be saved” (Mt. 10:22).
You must not speak idle words: Matthew 12:37
Each one will be rewarded according to his works:
For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. Matthew 16.27
You have to keep the commandments (which are actions! Not a profession of belief):
If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments. Matthew 19:17-19
You have to eat Jesus’ flesh and drink his blood to be saved:
Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:53-54
You have to believe AND be baptized to be saved:
He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. Mark 16:16
For you render to each one according to his works. Psalm 62:12
I the Lord … give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings. Jeremiah 17:10
I will give unto every one of you according to your works. Revelation 2:23
The Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work. 1 Peter 1:17
those who did good will come forth to life; and those who did evil will come forth to judgement. (John 5:28)
It is necessary to take up one’s cross, deny ourselves, and follow Christ to enter heaven (see Mk. 8:34-5, Lk. 9:23-24)
Even St. Paul wasn’t sure of his own salvation, despite the fact that he obviously had faith (see 1 Cor. 4:3-5, 1 Cor. 9:27, Phil. 3:12-14)
“Neither faith without works nor works without faith is of any avail, except, perhaps, that works may go toward the reception of faith [e.g. through God’s grace]” (Pope St. Gregory I the Great, Doctor of the Church, 6th century A.D.)”
It would be annoying (to me anyway) to go down the whole list of examples you post here, because I know that you don’t even believe plainly what you posted. FOr example, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” Mark 16:16
Catholicism does not teach that literal baptism is required for salvation. Baptism by blood or desire is sufficient. This is the case with the thief on the cross, for example. Obviously we must believe and be baptized to be saved, as baptism is a matter of obedience. No Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.
And so, all of your examples are similar to this. You are purposely over-stating your point and neglecting in some parts, like here, by over-stating your point you reject your own doctrine.
Sorry, I don’t play that game…which is why I welcome a vocal debate as it would require a more focused discussion.
If you really would like me to go down each example, I would if you were reasonable in conceding facts like the above. However, because this isn’t my first rodeo, I know that people online tend to just disagree for sport so you will purposely disagree with what I just wrote though it actually presents Catholic doctrine, unlike the inference you were drawing from Mark 16;16.
Craig-Catholicism does not teach that literal baptism is required for salvation. Baptism by blood or desire is sufficient. This is the case with the thief on the cross, for example. Obviously we must believe and be baptized to be saved, as baptism is a matter of obedience. No Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.
CK-Catholicism does teach literal baptism is the normative way for salvation (by leaving out normative you are being misleading). We don’t use examples of God’s mercy to turn His exceptions to His commands into the normative. Jesus shows us by example and flat out tells us that we must be baptized by water and spirit, but you look for exceptions to justify not following God’s command. It’s equivalent of a father giving curfew to his sons. One son gets in a wreck and has to go to the hospital thus missing his curfew. He does not punish the son as he was willing to obey his command but was kept from doing it by an event out of his control. The other sons point to this event to ignore the father’s command. Thus the exception becomes normative leading to their own rules. The father can make exceptions to his commands as he sees fit, the sons do not. They are his sons regardless and will be punished according to his rules not the sons.
Craig-No Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.
Me-where is this in the bible? In your view what’s so special about baptism as opposed to any of His other commands such as forgiving others? They are all necessary! If what you said is true then you can say no Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting any of His commands! If that’s the case there are no Christian on this earth!
The only game being played is by you looking for exemptions to clear commands given to us by God to follow to justify your theology.
KO, I mean CK, did you forget which handle you were using to post? But yes, Catholicism does teach that baptism normatively justifies, howeer, it does not teach that it is absolutely necessary for salvation depending on circumstance.
“In your view what’s so special about baptism as opposed to any of His other commands such as forgiving others? They are all necessary!”
Yes, which is why Christians MUST do them.
Craig, I’m not KO. I’m not sure why you accuse me of lying about about my handle. Not sure what there’s to gain by posting as two different people.
Craig said – But yes, Catholicism does teach that baptism normatively justifies,
Me – thank you for Correcting the record.
Craig – howeer, it does not teach that it is absolutely necessary for salvation depending on circumstance.
Me – if you cooperate with the grace God gives you have the possibility of being saved, but you are responsible for what you do know and not for what you do not know.
“In your view what’s so special about baptism as opposed to any of His other commands such as forgiving others? They are all necessary!”
Craig – Yes, which is why Christians MUST do them.
Me – exactly! You MUST do them to be saved, not you WILL do them because you are saved! This, I believe, IS the point of contention.
This is why you have to assume “No Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.” ie a Christian WILL obey, though there are plenty of examples where Christians do not obey and fall away. They MUST but did not.
So, if you must be baptized to be saved then it’s not faith alone. If you WILL be baptized because you are saved then it’s faith alone.
Hopefully this gives an idea where I’m coming from.
I think you honestly don’t understand faith alone. Faith alone does not mean you can believe one thing and do another. In very simple words, the difference between faith alone and your view is that faith alone is sufficient to attain the forgiveness of sins while Catholicism teaches that faith alone is sufficient for justification for pre-baptismal sins. After faith/baptism, the other sacraments are needed to forgive sins and attain God’s blessings.
You can see both views allow for sacraments and both views make sacraments necessary. However, the necessity of the Catholic sacraments is due to their efficacy while in faith alone it is due to obedience.
My “debate” is in the last comment, that hasn’t been published yet…
a) “No Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.”
1) Christ and his disciples told/ordered us to be baptized
2) If you’re not baptized you’re not being obedient/disregarding Christ’s commands, therefore:
3) Every Christian would be disobedient in purposely neglecting baptism.
I agree, I must have misspoke, my apologies. No Christian WOULD BE OBEDIENT in purposely neglecting baptism. I’d presume the rest of my reply dwells on that fact, but I cannot remember.
Craig, I don’t know why you pick up with identities — I don’t even know CK, and I’m pretty sure we’re thousands of kilometers apart. So let’s forget you’re kind of paranoid and let’s get down to business, shall we?
“I know that you don’t even believe plainly what you posted.”
You know nothing. You assume, surmise, or accuse. I don’t remember giving you authority to be my inquisitor. I do believe plainly that there’s a clear meaning in all scripture quotes I posted. So you’re wrong.
“Catholicism does not teach that literal baptism is required for salvation.”
See CK’s answer below. You’re taking the exception to mean the norm. And you know that.
“You are purposely over-stating your point and neglecting in some parts, like here, by over-stating your point you reject your own doctrine.”
I don’t reject anything. You don’t know my doctrine. Of course I believe faith saves. I don’t believe faith “alone” saves. You should know that. So insisting on points that prove that faith saves wouldn’t be needed. The magic word is “alone”. You believe that faith alone saves. Don’t you? What does it entail?
“Sorry, I don’t play that game…which is why I welcome a vocal debate as it would require a more focused discussion.”
It’s not a game.
“If you really would like me to go down each example, I would if you were reasonable in conceding facts like the above.”
Which “facts”? That you *think* that Catholics don’t believe baptism has a real effect on salvation? Go read the Catechism, please: http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p2s2c1a1.htm. Before you accuse me, I believe it *word for word*.
So I have to concede that *you* of all people are really presenting the Catholic position? Ok. I just assume that you’re either tired and/or not willing to engage and/or that you don’t have a ready-made answer. Unless you give me more reason to think otherwise.
“I know that people on-line tend to just disagree for sport so you will purposely disagree with what I just wrote though it actually presents Catholic doctrine”…
*You* boast that you present Catholic doctrine truthfully. I sometimes disagree. I You just don’t. Things in life most of the time are not a black/white, either/or, zero-sum game. Go ask Joe if he agrees. He knows better. But you just cannot ask. You like to “debate”. By the way, I don’t disagree for sport. I really just don’t agree with you on most points. Just like hot pants and sleeveless shirts not being Christian. I disagree.
I am not drawing any inferences. I am reading the plain meaning. “Whoever believes AND is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”