EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics
#27
And more... basically saying what I said before, though in much more detail and more edumacated:

Quote:And let us recall the full radicality of this Protestant critique. It is not that the Southern Baptists (let us say) object to the aforesaid claim simply because they consider their own denomination, rather than “Rome”, to be the one true Church. That would basically be the same kind of objection that many claimants to this or that national throne have made over the centuries against rival claimants: “It is not you, but I, who am the rightful king!” No, the Protestant position cuts much deeper. It is like objecting to someone’s claim to the throne of England on the grounds that no such throne exists! It’s like protesting that anyone at all who claims to be England’s rightful ruler is ipso facto an impostor and potential tyrant whose pretensions must be firmly resisted! For the common position now shared by Protestants is precisely that no single Christian denomination may claim to be the Church founded by Christ, and, therefore, that no leader of any one denomination may dare claim the authority to make doctrinal or governing decisions that bind all Christians. Rather, it is said, each denomination should respectfully recognize many (or even all) of the others as being true, that is, real, “churches”, and so limit itself to making the modest claim of being preferable to the others in one way or another – for instance, by virtue of possessing what it believes is a better understanding of Scripture. In other words, the different organized “churches”, according to this ecclesiology, are seen as being in this respect pretty much like banks, schools, cars, brands of toothpaste, or any other sorts of commodities and services. It is considered legitimate to promote one or other as being of better quality than the rest; but just as it would be outrageous and beyond the pale for Wells Fargo to claim seriously that none of its competitors is truly a bank, or for General Motors to claim that nobody else makes real automobiles, or for Colgate ads to proclaim that what you’ll get in tubes of other brands is not just inferior toothpaste but fake toothpaste – so Protestants right across the liberal-conservative spectrum consider it theologically outrageous and beyond the pale for any single Christian denomination (read: Roman Catholicism) to claim that it is the one and only real Church.9

Now, pre-Reformation churchmen like Aquinas and the Fathers of Florence would have seen this sort of pluralistic, ‘multi-church’ ecclesiology not only as manifest heresy, but as something approaching lunacy. For they saw what should always be obvious to Christians (but now, sadly, is not), namely, that denying the existence of any earthly authority empowered to make final and binding decisions for the one Church of Christ (including interpretations of Scripture) was just as plainly a recipe for religious anarchy as denying the existence of England’s throne would have been for civil anarchy. To help us appreciate how natural it was for our medieval Catholic forebears to be highly skeptical that any Christian could in good conscience reject papal authority altogether, we need only reflect on how skeptical we ourselves would be about the sincerity of anyone who today claimed ‘conscientious objection’ against one of the authorities that our society still believes are legitimate and necessary. For instance, who among us would take seriously a baseball player or cricketer who, not content to lodge a complaint about some particular decision of an umpire, boldly proclaimed his “sincere belief” that no umpire’s decision should ever be binding, since it is (in his opinion) “presumptuous” for any one man ever to try and “impose” his own judgment on the players in the field? And would we not all roll our eyes dismissively at any man who “sincerely” insisted not just that the latest Supreme Court decision is in his opinion unjust, but that no court in the nation should be considered ‘supreme’ over others, or be so “arrogant” and “autocratic” as to claim the final and binding word in any legal dispute?

In short, the medieval European situation was one in which it seemed obvious to just about everybody that there was, and could only ever be, one single and visibly organized Church of Christ. So it seemed equally obvious that no Christian could reasonably expect to be regarded as sincere and in good conscience if he challenged in its entirety the authority of the Roman Pontiff, the only possible guarantor of the Church’s visible unity.
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Messages In This Thread
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by jonbhorton - 08-14-2012, 09:13 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-16-2012, 09:54 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-16-2012, 10:22 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-16-2012, 11:12 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-16-2012, 12:11 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-17-2012, 10:31 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-17-2012, 10:54 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 08-17-2012, 11:18 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 08-18-2012, 01:56 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Stubborn - 08-18-2012, 01:48 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by James02 - 08-19-2012, 05:18 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by James02 - 08-19-2012, 05:37 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 08-22-2012, 12:36 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 08-24-2012, 05:10 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-13-2012, 01:25 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-13-2012, 03:47 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-13-2012, 07:46 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-13-2012, 10:33 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-14-2012, 07:18 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-14-2012, 07:38 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-14-2012, 08:06 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-14-2012, 08:14 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-15-2012, 04:03 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-15-2012, 07:31 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-15-2012, 09:17 PM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by Doce Me - 09-17-2012, 02:20 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-17-2012, 07:23 AM
Re: EENS and ¿Invisible? Catholics - by INPEFESS - 09-17-2012, 07:25 AM



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