Possessed Priest and Valid Sacraments
#41
(09-27-2011, 09:56 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 09:27 PM)Melkite Wrote: No, it wasn't based on feelings, it was based on reason.  If God is immutable, and we know he goes to extraordinary measures to save us, then he must also go to extraordinary measures to save those unbaptized who never had a chance to be baptized.  That's reason based, not emotions based.

The only extraordinary measure God went to in order to redeem mankind was the sacrificial death of his Son on the cross whose blood "cleanseth us from all sin." (1 John 1:7) Indeed, divine revelation clearly teaches that "all have sinned, and do need the glory of God" (Romans 3:23) including infants and newborns. St. Paul stresses again the evangelical truth that all are condemned and that redemption comes only by faith in Christ when he says "the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise, by the faith of Jesus Christ, might be given to them that believe." (Galatians 3:22)

In order to be delivered from death, any man must repent of his sins, believe the Gospel and be baptized, according to Christ's infallible word: "Amen, amen I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." (John 3:5), "The time is accomplished, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent, and believe the gospel." (Mark 1:15) and again "He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned." (Mark 16:16)

As you should know, God is under no obligation to save anyone. "O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it: Why hast thou made me thus? Or hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump, to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath, fitted for destruction, that he might shew the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he hath prepared unto glory?" (Romans 9:20-23)

I'm not saying there isn't plenty of things you can point to to support such a position.  I'm just saying, this position can't both be true and God be immutable or not fickle at the same time.
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#42
(09-27-2011, 09:59 PM)Melkite Wrote: But, most importantly, as to your first question, He must if he is immutable.  He doesn't have to, but then he is mutable.

No, because those who are not baptized are not reborn, thus they are dead to God.

He goes to extraordinary measures to save us because we are not dead to him, since we already died and were reborn through our Baptism.
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#43
(09-27-2011, 10:04 PM)Melkite Wrote: I'm not saying there isn't plenty of things you can point to to support such a position.  I'm just saying, this position can't both be true and God be immutable or not fickle at the same time.

I'm afraid I'm missing your point.

Christ's death profits the elect alone. That was foreordained from all eternity.
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#44
(09-27-2011, 10:05 PM)K3vinhood Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 09:59 PM)Melkite Wrote: But, most importantly, as to your first question, He must if he is immutable.  He doesn't have to, but then he is mutable.

No, because those who are not baptized are not reborn, thus they are dead to God.

He goes to extraordinary measures to save us because we are not dead to him, since we already died and were reborn through our Baptism.

::)  Were not those for whom God DID go to extraordinary measures also dead to God at one time, though?  What a catch 22!  In order to no longer be dead to God, you have to have received God's extraordinary grace.  But in order to receive God's extraordinary grace, you have to no longer be dead to God.
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#45
(09-27-2011, 10:08 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 10:04 PM)Melkite Wrote: I'm not saying there isn't plenty of things you can point to to support such a position.  I'm just saying, this position can't both be true and God be immutable or not fickle at the same time.

I'm afraid I'm missing your point.

Christ's death profits the elect alone. That was foreordained from all eternity.

Perhaps INPEFESS will be able to translate it.  I unfortunately don't think I'm skilled enough to explain it any better.  Or perhaps it only makes sense to me and isn't objectively rational.
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#46
(09-27-2011, 10:09 PM)Melkite Wrote: ::)  Were not those for whom God DID go to extraordinary measures also dead to God at one time, though?  What a catch 22!  In order to no longer be dead to God, you have to have received God's extraordinary grace.  But in order to receive God's extraordinary grace, you have to no longer be dead to God.

I'm no theological genius, but I would say it simply say maybe it comes down to who's is in the elect and who is not.

Those who are never Baptized are not within the elect.

:shrug:

I may very well be wrong here, this is an elaborate issue, but I will stick to the consensus view of the Fathers, that Baptism is necessary for salvation.
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#47
(09-27-2011, 10:08 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 10:04 PM)Melkite Wrote: I'm not saying there isn't plenty of things you can point to to support such a position.  I'm just saying, this position can't both be true and God be immutable or not fickle at the same time.

I'm afraid I'm missing your point.

Christ's death profits the elect alone. That was foreordained from all eternity.

Also, the manner in which you reference predestination, it makes me wonder if it really is nothing more than a way of attributing action to a passive reality.  So, for example, Christ's death profit the elect alone.  Yes, this is true, because anyone who is in hell has not profited from Christ's death.  And it was foreordained from all eternity.  But what actually happened?  Did they not profit from Christ's death because they weren't elect?  Or were they not elect because they didn't profit from Christ's death?  Did God actively not elect them, precluding any chance for them to profit from Christ's death, or did they refuse God's offer of mercy and forgiveness, and thus any profit of Christ's death, and because of that cannot be elected by God?
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#48
(09-27-2011, 09:47 AM)Melkite Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 03:12 AM)INPEFESS Wrote: This is a reasonable objection. I hope my answer can help to resolve the apparent contradiction.

The difference is that, in the first case, unbaptized infants can not use their free will to intend to receive the sacraments. Hence, they do not merit its effects. In the second case, however, the soul who freely cooperates with God's grace to choose to receive the sacraments, but does not know that they are invalid, has positively chosen to respond to God's grace. Because he is invincibly ignorant as to the validity of the sacrament, no fault can be found in his execution of his free will.

The unborn infant must freely choose to serve God with his own free will in order to enjoy eternal life in the presence of God, but because he is unable to use his free will no fault is found in him. As a result, he is born into perfect natural happiness and suffers only the privation of the unmerited presence of God. The soul who has reached the age of reason, however, has freely chosen to serve God via the free co-operation of his will, and his invincible ignorance of the invalid sacrament cannot be counted against him.

The unborn infant glorifies God's goodness by being a testament to His justice while the soul who unknowingly receives an invalid sacrament glorifies God's goodness by being a testament to His mercy. They both glorify God and give testament to His goodness to equal degrees, though in different ways. Each soul, having perfect understanding of (and resignation to) this after death, finds no displeasure in the means by which God has chosen that they should give Him glory.

I hate having to say this to you because you are truly a respectable, kind and polite person.  But this idea of salvation based on merits is a clear example of what happens when someone relies solely on scholasticism, stripped of any attachment to a mystical understanding.  Vetus, I'll save you the time of typing your cliched response, no, I'm not condemning scholasticism in and of itself because I prefer to be eastern over Catholic, but rather when it is basically idolized and goes beyond what it is necessary for, namely, anchoring mysticism in reality so that theology doesn't become a mere fantasy.  INPEFESS, it's clear from the Gospel that Christ didn't require merits to show mercy, he showed it beforehand.  And to mix it in with the predestination argument, if God can't grant heaven to someone just because, but has to wait for someone to merit it, is he not bound?  Does he not lose a portion of his sovereignty?  Baptized man doesn't really control his salvation, but is elect by God irrespective of his choice, because God must be sovereign, but the exact opposite is true with unbaptized infants, God is bound by the situation they are in and can do nothing because they haven't merited it. 

At any rate, what I had intended to get at was that the Gospel shows Christ granting mercy to whomever he wants irrespective of merits.  Salvation by merit is a theological construct that is popular in Latin theology because medieval Latin theologians had the tendency to abandon mysticism and go for an ultramontane Scholasticism of sorts.  It was overstretched above and beyond its proper use.  Limbo is just the logical conclusion of such an overstretched scholastic paradigm.  Salvation by merit is a theological construct contrary to the Gospel.

Free will must--absolutely must--co-operate with God's grace by freely corresponding to goodness in order to enjoy the Beatific Vision. If you deny this, you undermine everything we know about God, His goodness, the whole purpose we are here in the first place, and Christianity itself.

This includes the angels.

God does not just make things appear and then force them to be in His presence. Such an act is not to create rational beings; it is to create robots.

Love is a choice. Creating beings that don't choose to love you but are forced to do so anyway can't really be said to love. Yet God is all love. So, in order to be united to God, who is perfect love, a rational being must first be able to choose to love by co-operating with the grace of God. One cannot be intimately united to God's perfect love if one doesn't have perfect love in the first place.

The Beatific Vision is perfect love. One can't enjoy it unless one has freely chosen to do so. It makes absolutely know sense to claim otherwise because perfect love involves having the capacity to freely choose to love. Even God Himself chooses to love mankind. 

The angels freely chose to love when they chose to serve man. Those who chose not to serve God were not forced to do so, and so they lost the opportunity to see God.

To claim that God just makes a tree and then forces it to love Him and then putting it in His presence undermines everything we know about love.

Love is not a feeling; it is a choice. 
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#49
(09-28-2011, 08:52 AM)Melkite Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 10:08 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(09-27-2011, 10:04 PM)Melkite Wrote: I'm not saying there isn't plenty of things you can point to to support such a position.  I'm just saying, this position can't both be true and God be immutable or not fickle at the same time.

I'm afraid I'm missing your point.

Christ's death profits the elect alone. That was foreordained from all eternity.

Also, the manner in which you reference predestination, it makes me wonder if it really is nothing more than a way of attributing action to a passive reality.  So, for example, Christ's death profit the elect alone.  Yes, this is true, because anyone who is in hell has not profited from Christ's death.  And it was foreordained from all eternity.  But what actually happened?  Did they not profit from Christ's death because they weren't elect?  Or were they not elect because they didn't profit from Christ's death?  Did God actively not elect them, precluding any chance for them to profit from Christ's death, or did they refuse God's offer of mercy and forgiveness, and thus any profit of Christ's death, and because of that cannot be elected by God?

I think we've been over this a few times in the predestination threads. Election is God's unfathomable decree, not ours. It is certain that we are drawn to Him because first and foremost He moves us to do so. The elect are not simply considered elect because they cooperated with God's grace (post factum): they are "elect," hence the name, because God chose them from all eternity to be with Him (ante factum). You see, there's an unsurpassable mystery here, a mystery where God's immutable decree and our own free will are reconciled. Laying all speculation aside, we must confess along with the apostle: "Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump, to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?" (Romans 9:21)
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#50
God wills that all men be saved.
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