(Continued from page 321)Opinions on 'Peter the rock' from flabby Protestants!
More Scriptural views on Jesus the Rock of Scripture!
You write: Or, rather, supply the following section pasted from the internet:
David Hill, Presbyterian minister and senior lecturer of biblical studies at the University of Sheffield, writes: 'It is on Peter himself, the confessor of his Messiahship, that Jesus will build the Church…Attempts to interpret the 'rock' as something other than Peter in person (e.g. his faith, the truth revealed to him) are due to Protestant bias, and introduce to the statement a degree of subtlety which is highly unlikely.' (Quoted from The Gospel of Matthew, New Century Bible Commentary, p.261.)
In the protestant Theological Dictionary of the New Testament Vol. 6:108, which was edited by eminent protestant scholars Gerhard Kittel and Gerhard Friedrich, there is this article by well-known protestant Oscar Cullman: 'But what does Jesus mean when he says: 'On this rock I will build my Church'? The idea of the reformers that he is referring to the faith of Peter is quite inconceivable in view of the probably different setting of the story. For there is no reference here to the faith of Peter. Rather, the parallelism of 'thou art Rock' and 'on this rock I will build' shows that the second rock can only be the same as the first. It is thus evident that Jesus is referring to Peter, to whom he has given the name Rock. He appoints Peter…to be the foundation of his ecclesia. To this extent Roman Catholic exegesis is right and all attempts to evade this interpretation are to be rejected.'
Dr. John Broadus (1886), a Reformed Baptist Bible scholar, was forced to admit: 'As Peter means rock, the natural interpretation is that 'upon this rock' means upon thee. No other explanation would probably at the present day be attempted…But there is a play upon words, understand as you may. It is an even more far-fetched and harsh play upon words if we understand the rock to be Christ: and a very feeble and almost unmeaning play upon words if the rock is Peter's confession…Let it be observed that Jesus could not here mean himself by the rock, consistently with the image, because he is the builder. To say, 'I will build,' would be a very confused image. The suggestion of some expositors that in saying 'thou art Peter, and on this rock' Jesus pointed at himself, involves an artificiality which to some minds is repulsive.' (John A. Broadus, Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, Valley Forge, PA: Judson Press, 1886, p. 356.)
The Baptist D.A. Carson, professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Seminary, was also forced to acknowledge: 'Although it is true that Petros and Petra can mean 'stone' and 'rock' respectively in earlier Greek, the distinction is largely confined to poetry. Moreover the underlying Aramaic is in this case unquestionable; and most probably Kepha was used in both clauses ('you are Kepha and on this Kepha'), since the word was used both for a name and for a rock….The Greek makes the distinction between Petros and Petra simply because it is trying to preserve the pun, and in the Greek the feminine Petra could not very well serve as a masculine name.'(Quoted in The Expositors Bible Commentary, Volume 8, p.368)
You conclude: I went straight to your authorities, the eminent protestant scholars, and it is they whom protestants follow; whomever they take a liking to. You are so thoroughly refuted.
TCE: Let us investigate the difference between the 'authorities' you (or, rather, your sources) think you have quoted and the facts that really exist. We have written our introduction (see our 'home page') for good reason. In some, or even many, quarters of 'Protestantism' these men may hold some authority - but none of them overturn the Word of God on which we base our conclusions. To this day there are many men whose word may carry some weight in certain quarters but, just like men of the past ('Church Fathers' - Jerome, Augustine, Calvin, Luther, etc.) they are far from inspired or infallible. Paul was correct in predicting that 'Savage Wolves' (Acts 20v28-30) would be found even in ekklesia striving to be true to the Word of God! And we have already mentioned some, such as Cardinal Newman, who eventually defected to Papal Rome - i.e. he left the minor breakaway cult to return to the Major Cult of Papal Rome! We have high-lighted the remarks by those you choose to call 'eminent protestant scholars' to make our point:
David Hill was simply expressing his own opinion: 'Attempts to interpret the 'rock' as something other than Peter in person (e.g. his faith, the truth revealed to him) are due to Protestant bias, and introduce to the statement a degree of subtlety which is highly unlikely.'
There are many subtle elements to the Word of God that simple, fallible men such as Hill or ourselves can miss - but even Augustine eventually came to the conclusion that the Rock that is Christ is the only sure foundation of any fellowship calling itself an 'ekklesia' of God!
While Gerhard Kittel and Gerhard Friedrich carry substantial weight with many ignorant 'Protestants' because of their skills in biblical languages, you will find Wikipedia exposing the truth about Kittel (whose father, Rudolf, was highly valued for his critical edition of the Hebrew scriptures, Biblia Hebraica, which remains a standard text):
'Gerhard Kittel (September 23, 1888 in Breslau - July 11, 1948 in Tübingen) was a German Protestant theologian, and lexicographer of biblical languages. He was an enthusiastic supporter of the Nazis and an open anti-Semite. He is best known in the field of Biblical study for his Theologisches Wörterbuch zum Neuen Testament (Theological Dictionary of the New Testament) ...He had had no previous involvement in politics but called the Nazi Party 'a voelkisch renewal movement on a Christian, moral foundation'. ...In 1945, after Hitler's Third Reich capitulated to the Allies, Kittel was arrested by the French occupying forces, removed from office and interned at Balingen. In 1946 Kittel was released pending his trial. ...but died that year before the criminal proceedings against him could be resumed. ...For the Third Reich, he produced anti-semitic propaganda posing as scholarship. A Professor of Evangelical Theology and New Testament at the University of Tübingen, he published studies depicting the Jewish people as the historical enemy of Germany, Christianity, and European culture in general'.
For an opinion of 'well-known protestant Oscar Cullman' to turn up in their works is equally pointless in this discussion. Why? Again, try reading Wikipedia:
'Oscar Cullmann (25 February 1902, Strasbourg - 16 January 1999, Chamonix) was a Christian theologian in the Lutheran tradition. He is best known for his work in the ecumenical movement, being in part responsible for the establishment of dialogue between the Lutheran and Roman Catholic traditions. Because of his intense ecumenical work, Cullmann's Basel colleague Karl Barth joked with him that his tombstone would bear the inscription 'advisor to three popes.' He was invited to be an observer at the Second Vatican Council.
Cullman's obvious alliances with Papal Rome and other Christian cults mean his opinions carry no more weight than the theologians of Papal Rome but, as always, it is the facts brought up in a discussion that carry weight, not the reputation or past history of any person! As Wikipedia also notes:
Karl Barth, stressed the objective reality of sacred history against the existentialist interpretation of Rudolf Bultmann, a fellow German theologian. Cullmann suggested the analogy of D Day and V Day to illustrate the relationship between Jesus' death and resurrection on the one hand, and his parousia on the other. [TCE: how these 'Days' make any kind of useful analogy in Christian theology, only the troubled mind of Cullman could envisage!] Upon his death at age 96, the World Council of Churches (a hotbed of heretical thought!) issued a special tribute to Cullmann in honor of his ecumenical work.
In the same manner, Cullman's suggestion that 'The idea of the reformers that he is referring to the faith of Peter is quite inconceivable in view of the probably different setting of the story. For there is no reference here to the faith of Peter' is inexplicable for two reasons. What on earth does he mean by 'probably different setting of the story'? The 'setting' is perfectly clear and by expressing an opinion that Jesus said 'flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven' it is made clear that Peter's faith in God was the reason for his knowledge that Jesus was 'the Christ, the Son of the living God'!
Cullman's view is severely flawed and the manner in which he tries to reject the real relationship between Christ the Rock and Peter's rock-like faith means his conclusion that 'Roman Catholic exegesis is right and all attempts to evade this interpretation are to be rejected ' can likewise be rejected!
The opinions of Dr. John Broadus can be rejected for very similar reasons. His opinion that other interpretations make for a 'far-fetched and harsh play upon words if we understand the rock to be Christ: and a very feeble and almost unmeaning play upon words if the rock is Peter's confession' fails in the same way as Cullman's - it is based on opinion and not on incredible Biblical knowledge. In what way would this be 'harsh' or 'unmeaning'? Towards Peter? In grammatical terms? For Broadus to claim that 'Jesus could not here mean himself by the rock, consistently with the image, because he is the builder' is entirely consistent with Scripture. And his claim that ''I will build,' would be a very confused image' is also a very short-sighted, un-Biblical view.
More truth about the so-called 'Church Fathers'!
Scripture reveals that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Rock (1 Corinthians 10v4; cf. Habbakuk 1:12 - see below) and both Creator and fully God (John 20v28; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 2v9) and therefore both the Builder and the Rock on which He builds just as He was both the God who Created man and then became Man to save all of mankind! So suggesting that Jesus cannot be the Rock on which He builds His ekklesia (the correct Biblical term for a Christian group of believers) when Scripture also makes it clear that He is also the corner-stone is absurd - as the following passage proves emphatically (1 Peter 2:1-10):
'Putting away therefore all wickedness, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, as newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation; if ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious: unto whom coming, a living stone, rejected indeed of men, but with God elect, precious, ye also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Because it is contained in scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone [ακρογωνιαιος - akrogoniaios - belonging to the extreme corner; chief corner], elect, precious: And he that believeth on him shall not be put to shame. For you therefore that believe is the preciousness: but for such as disbelieve, The stone which the builders rejected, The same was made the head [κεφαλη - kephale - the head (as the part most readily taken hold of), literally or figuratively] of the corner [γωνια - gonia - an angle, corner, quarter]; and, A stone of stumbling, and a rock [πετρα - petra - feminine of petros; a (mass of) rock (literally or figuratively)]of offence; for they stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. But ye are a elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: who in time past were no people, but now are the people of God: who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy'.
Note that, when the word 'stone' appears in the above passage, we find the Greek word, lithos, used in a manner consistent with our earlier discussion.
As pointed out above, God is the Rock of the Old Testament (Habakkuk 1:12 - ASV):
'Art not thou from everlasting, O YHWH my God, my Holy One? we shall not die. O YHWH, thou hast ordained him for judgment; and thou, O Rock [Hebrew: צוּר - tsuwr - a cliff (or sharp rock, as compressed); generally, a rock or boulder; figuratively, a refuge; also an edge (as precipitous), (mighty) God (one), rock, sharp], hast established him for correction'.
Nothing Jesus said in the New Testament suggests apostolic succession, or that Peter was 'pope.' The true ekklesia ('church') was then, is now, and always will be Christ's, and He is clearly its ultimate builder.
Ironically, for those claiming otherwise, the history of Papal Rome reveals an utter failure of their 'popes' to present a Biblical Christ and His Gospel to the world, so discussing the kind of rock or pebble Peter was called by Jesus is entirely irrelevant!
To complete the discussion of Broadus' last comment ('The suggestion of some expositors that in saying 'thou art Peter, and on this rock' Jesus pointed at himself, involves an artificiality which to some minds is repulsive') we can simply reply that no genuinely orthodox Christian would ever suggest this 'artificiality' as an explanation - for we have already shown that no such ruse is required.
'The Baptist D.A. Carson, professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Seminary, was also forced to acknowledge: 'Although it is true that Petros and Petra can mean 'stone' and 'rock' respectively in earlier Greek, the distinction is largely confined to poetry. Moreover the underlying Aramaic is in this case unquestionable; and most probably Kepha was used in both clauses ('you are Kepha and on this Kepha'), since the word was used both for a name and for a rock….The Greek makes the distinction between Petros and Petra simply because it is trying to preserve the pun, and in the Greek the feminine Petra could not very well serve as a masculine name.' (Quoted in The Expositors Bible Commentary, Volume 8, p.368)'
We have already answered the hopeful 'kepha' - as pointed out earlier.
You conclude: I went straight to your authorities, the eminent protestant scholars, and it is they whom protestants follow; whomever they take a liking to. You are so thoroughly refuted.
It seems that your failings also include knowing the meaning of 'eminent, thoroughly, refuted [and even] 'I' '! If you had written that you went 'straight to your [own] authorities' who offered these names as 'Protestant authorities' we might give you some credit for at least trying! But you have even reversed the usual false reasoning of Papal Roman Catholics - normally your brethren claim every 'Protestant' makes up their own mind what they will believe so that each one is his own 'pope'! Perhaps you should consider the long list of 'popes' who were even heretical within their/your own cultic set-up and, perhaps, topped by Sixtus V and Formosus who lost vital fingers from his hand during the 'Cadaver Synod' as proof of this truth!
In contrast, what do we learn from your own 'popes'?:
'Every cleric must obey the Pope, even if he commands what is evil; for no one may judge the Pope.' (Pope Innocent III, 1198-1216)
Speaking of himself - and all 'popes' - Pope Adrian VI (1523) said:
It is beyond question that he can err even in matters touching the faith. He does this when he teaches heresy by his own judgment or decretal. In truth, many Roman Pontiffs were heretics.
Ridiculously, as even Papal Rome agrees - theoretically - a heretical pope is therefore no longer even a member of the Church, much less its head. But consequently, a heretic, though pope, could not possibly provide a channel of apostolic authority to a successor. Yet the list of popes contains numerous heretics who were denounced as such by their own councils and by other popes.
This we have already proven on our pages - which you could not be bothered to read!
Yet you complain when we do not bother to rush to reply to your extremely peripheral issues?
And why do you keep referring to us as 'Protestants' anyway? Is it that you are just too lazy to even read our fairly brief home page? 'Protestants' came out of Papal Rome and many of them never 'Reformed' far enough, as we have repeatedly pointed out. We did not come out of Papal Rome or 'Protestantism' and only believe what the Bible clearly states as the truth - and this is something no Papal Roman Catholic or 'Protestant' can claim.
Papal Roman Catholics should learn at least one more lesson from quoting supposed 'experts':
We recently received material from a 'Christian cult' seeking to gather support for a film that used their spokesperson, 'Bishop' John Shelby Spong as an 'advisor'. The film, 'Jesus: The Cold Case', was apparently an award 'winner' for best documentary (in New Zealand) and Silver and Bronze medal winner at the 'New York Festivals Awards'. The writer of the screenplay and director of the film, Bryan Bruce, set out to 'take on the ultimate cold case - 'Who killed Jesus and why?'' Bruce was reported to have visited 'the scenes of the crime' and to have talked with some of 'the world leading experts on the historical Jesus including Geza Vermes, Professor. John Dominic Crossan, Professor. Elaine Pagels, Dr. Helen Bond, Sir Lloyd Geering and Bishop John Shelby Spong'.
The cult can describe whoever it likes as 'the world leading experts on the historical Jesus' - but that will never make them something they are not. World leading Bible experts from the orthodox Christian world will never work with the likes of heretic John Shelby Spong who is to theology and Christianity what George W. Bush was to politics!
More false Papal views on 'Protestants'!
You write: You also call the Church Fathers you don't agree with as 'heretical.' Actually, you call them all heretical every time they reject and condemn your protestant errors. The Church Fathers were the closest to Jesus Christ and received his Teachings. The Apostolic Fathers were the direct students of the Apostles themselves and they in turn discipled the Church Fathers. The conclusion is therefore inescapable; you realize that your protestantism is nowhere touted in the Early Fathers and you so rebel and riot against their unanimous Teaching and consent in matters Catholic; by astoundingly calling them heretics!
TCE: Once again you fail to recognise the essential truth. If any person claiming to be a Christian makes a statement purporting to be Christian truth - and particularly if they are an elder or deacon - they should expect to be challenged publicly if they are in error and, if they are speaking accurately, they should be equally grateful for the opportunity to correct anyone in error. The writings of the 'Fathers' show where many of the heresies that make up the doctrinal teachings of Papal Rome originated and the fact that they are not proven from Scripture is the reason we reject them. Nowhere in the Bible do we find a claim that every leader after the time of the apostles would be inspired or infallible. In fact, as we already explained on our pages, the apostles warned (Acts 20:28-30):
'Take heed unto yourselves, and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit hath made you bishops, to feed the church of the Lord which he purchased with His own blood. I know that after my departing grievous wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.'
So, by what logic would anyone claim that everything the 'Fathers' said and wrote would be totally Biblical?
Far from drawing an 'inescapable ... conclusion' the facts reveal that you are simply incapable of following an argument to draw a logical conclusion.
Origin of the claim of 'No Salvation Outside the Catholic Church'?
You write: You fail to realize and note that it is in fact your protestantism that is built on the traditions of men and is constantly evolving into newer and endless pick-and -choose catalogs of man made organized religion. Amazingly, you claim to be a 'bible believer' while disagreeing with 50,000 other denominations in your protestant false religion who tout the same slogan of 'bible believers' and condemn your protestant beliefs; notwithstanding that you don't even have the Bible, but a counterfeit construct man made errant book. In effect, every time you say 'the bible' you are indeed referring to your man made protestant uninspired 'scriptures.' According to the protestant 'bible believer ' fallacy, anyone, even Satan, can enter heaven so long as they shout the slogan that they are a so called true 'bible believer.'
TCE: You reveal your Biblical ignorance at every turn and have shown this in your utter failure to disprove one thing that Bible-believing Christians have found to be God's truth. If you really believe the claims you make here try and prove that there are '50,000 other denominations' who disagree with our Bible-beliefs, notwithstanding the fact that we are not 'Protestants' anyway! If you bothered to carry out any genuine research you would find that there are only minor variations between the denominations you insult and these pale into utter insignificance when compared to Papal Rome's blundering history of taking on doctrines and casting them off at the whim of 'popes' - we even have a list on this page detailing the long list of their major additions over the centuries.
Try and supply us with evidence for your moronic accusation that: 'According to the protestant 'bible believer ' fallacy, anyone, even Satan, can enter heaven so long as they shout the slogan that they are a so called true 'bible believer.' '
You write: Some of your statements are so superfluous, loquacious, and characterized by so much redundancy that one really has to ask the question if you even know or understand what you are talking about.
TCE: While it is very kind of you to give a critique of 'Some ... statements', unfortunately you have made it perfectly clear that you are incapable of refuting even the simplest of expositions, never mind refuting the Biblical and historical facts we quote, but failing to 'know or understand' these probably makes you an ideal candidate to illustrate 'the pot calling the kettle black'!
Why call them 'Church Fathers' in rebellion against Jesus?!
You write: Your assertion that Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus (No Salvation Outside the Catholic Church) originated in St. Cyprian is protestant fantasy.
TCE: If you really believe your statement prove it with facts - just claiming it to be 'protestant fantasy' does not amount to an argument of any kind!
Since we supplied details ['Cyprian ... wrote: 'No one can have God as Father who does not have the Church as Mother.' (Catechism of the Catholic Church, p55)] the least that could be expected of you would be an investigation of the 'Cathechism' you are ultimately putting your faith in by accepting the teaching of the fallible 'popes' and their false doctrines and traditions.
It is, of course, also a fact that Cyprian wrote this error before Papal Rome even existed in the embryonic papal form for, as we have proven, your cult came into existence during the reign of Constantine who allowed the influx of pagan ideas which resulted in the progressive disaster that we now witness with its paedophile priesthood and Marxist 'Pope Francis'!
'The Catechism of the Catholic Church' is found on the internet in more than one place e.g.:
http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p1s1c3a2.htm where you can find the same phrase of Cyprian:
'181 'Believing' is an ecclesial act. the Church's faith precedes, engenders, supports and nourishes our faith. the Church is the mother of all believers. 'No one can have God as Father who does not have the Church as Mother' (St. Cyprian, De unit. 6: PL 4, 519).'
It is a fact that you will not find equivalent words anywhere in the Vulgate (see our thorough analysis of Jerome's work) or any of the extremely accurate 'Protestant' Bibles translated by genuine experts of the languages and theology. But this does not bother most Papal Roman Catholics in the slightest - even those who have written to us insisting that we quote 'the Catechism' but then, when we obliged them, failing to respond in any manner at all! All the marks of the cults are to be found in Papal Rome and this inability to reply when challenged by God's Word (found only in the Bible rarely read by Papal Roman Catholics - and not in any works of the 'popes' or other cult leaders) is yet another one of them.
You write: You also called the Church Fathers heretics; if they are heretics (which is false, you are the heretic and corrupt apostate on the road to condemnation) they cannot be Church Fathers at all.
TCE: we actually wrote 'the 'Church Fathers' ... are easily proven to have held many heretical and un-Biblical teachings.' They held to considerable truth but have little excuse for their errors since they are collectively known to have quoted the New Testament so extensively in their writings that only ELEVEN verses of this testament would be lost if - God forbid (and He has!) - any corrupt man was able to destroy all the manuscripts and translations of the Bible! As we have written many times, the Lord Jesus Christ said the Holy Spirit would lead believers 'into all truth' (John 16v7ff.). Therefore anyone who is claimed to be an authority and fails to recognise and teach the truth of the Bible in its entirety should not be revered. It is a fact that Papal Rome embraced the men they labelled 'Church Fathers' as part of their false doctrine of 'Apostolic Succession' and 'Popery'. 'Protestants', who broke away from Papal Rome, took these same ingrained attitudes with them while some peripheral non-Protestant 'churches' have accepted the same attitude as they have embraced unity with others (and even Papal Rome) outside of the clear demands of Scripture.
So you are correct in writing that 'they cannot be Church Fathers at all'! We only use the term to be clear who we refer to in articles and replies - just as we add 'Papal' to Rome in order to emphasise that even those who try and differentiate their beliefs (in an attempt to avoid the embarrassment of being connected to the actions of 'popes' of living memory and their history of covering-up the sexual abuse by the priesthood) still have their origins in the same cult!
Mentioning the warning given by the Lord Jesus Christ to those who falsely labelled teachers and leaders is probably a waste of time, but necessary:
Matthew 23:8-12 (NASB) - 8 'But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9 'Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 'Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. 11 'But the greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 'Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.
Papal Historical Revisionism hides the truth
You write: You also pathetically alleged that Pope Pius IX taught heresy. You must not understand the meaning of words. A heretic is a person who rejects a dogma of the Catholic Church. Heretics are automatically excommunicated ipso facto from the Church, without any declaration, for denying an authoritative teaching of the Faith. Popes accept the dogmas of the Church and indeed define them, in case you did not know.
TCE: Firstly, you would need to prove that Papal Rome's dogmas (which is all they are!) are based 100% on the Word of God before you had a base to define heresy. Since you, and every Papal Roman Catholic who ever lived, cannot do this you fail at the first hurdle! We actually wrote about the 'massively corrupt Pope Pius IX' who supported Cyprian's heresy when he declared: 'It is to be held as a matter of faith that no one can be saved outside the Apostolic Roman Church. It is the only ark of salvation and anyone who does not enter it must sink in the flood.'
The apostle Peter was inspired to write (1 Peter 3:18-21): 'For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ'.
Peter shows us the relationship between believers and the ministry of Noah - a 'preacher of righteousness' (2 Peter 2:5) - and how the Flood was a picture (type) of a Christian's experience of baptism by immersion in water. He also reveals how the Flood pictures of our Lord's death, burial, and resurrection. The waters buried the earth in judgment, but they also lifted Noah and his family up to safety. Thus the church is shown in the ark a picture of salvation. Noah and his family were saved by faith because they believed God and entered into the ark of safety. Thus we are also shown that sinners are saved by faith when they trust Christ and become one with Him. The whole essence of 'being in Christ Jesus' (Romans 3:24), of ensuring that we 'abide in Him' (1 John 2:27-28), is because He is our Ark of Salvation and not 'the 'Apostolic Roman Church' '!
The disgraceful nature, behaviour and heresies of Pope Pius IX have been discussed in detail on our site under these titles:
When is a 'Pope' not a 'Pope' but an 'anti-pope'?
What is the truth about Rome's treatment of the Bible?
You write: All the Church Fathers defended Catholic doctrine and adhered to Papal authority in unison. You seem to reject this, which is absurd, even while rejecting them as heretical.
TCE: You are also confused about what the 'Church Fathers' really defended as well as the meaning of the term 'catholic,' which the Papal Roman Catholic Church has tried to appropriate exclusively to itself. Not only has it wrongly appropriated to itself the term 'Catholic', it has also failed to recognise that it is self-contradictory to call a body 'Roman' (which is particular) and at the same time 'Catholic' (which means universal)! The word 'catholic' was derived via Late Latin catholicus, from the Greek adjective katholikos, meaning 'universal' which comes from the Greek phrase katholou, meaning 'on the whole', 'according to the whole' or 'in general'. It is orthodox Christians and not 'Romanists' who believe in the catholic church, that is 'the church is universal or catholic'. Papal Rome cannot discover it beyond her own communion. Orthodox Christians believe in: 'Ubi Spiritus ibi ecclesia' - 'Where the Spirit is there is the church' while Roman Catholics beleive: 'Ubi ecclesia ibi Spiritus' - 'Where the (Roman) church is there is the Spirit.' Thus it is only with the proper historic word 'catholic' in mind that Protestants are more correct than Papal Rome in reciting it in the Apostles' Creed.
Bishop J. C. Ryle, of Liverpool, England, was a rare Anglican in following the Bible (probably far more closely than any 'bishop or 'archbishop' of his church since) and explained the situation from his position:
'There are many 'churches,' but in the New Testament only one true church is recognized. This true church is composed of all believers in the Lord Jesus. It is made up of God's elect - of all converted men and women - of all true Christians. It is a church of which all the members are born again of the Holy Spirit. They all possess repentance toward God, faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ, and holiness of life and conversation. They all draw their religion from one single book - the Bible. It is the church whose existence does not depend on forms, ceremonies, cathedrals, churches, vestments, organs, or any act or favour whatever from the hand of man. It has often lived on and continued when all these things have been taken from it. This is the universal church of the Apostles' Creed, and of the Nicene Creed. This is the only church which is truly universal. Its members are found in every part of the world where the Gospel is received and believed'.
Anyone reading this would need to bear in mind that only an autonomous ekklesia ('church') based thoroughly and entirely on the Word of God can fulfil this definition - and the contemporary 'Anglican Church' is a long way from being such an ekklesia ('church').
Rev. Stephen L. Testa, a former Roman Catholic, and founder of The Scripture Truth Society, wrote:
'The Lord Jesus Christ founded His church (Matthew 16:18), which was evangelical Christian. He was to be the Head, the Holy Spirit the Guide, and the Bible the only rule of faith and practice. It was made up of His followers who were born again and pledged to continue His work of redemption in the world. It was catholic in that it was designed for all the people of the earth. The church remained pure and faithful to the Gospel for about 300 years, which was the golden age of martyrs and saints, who were persecuted by pagan Rome. After the so-called conversion of emperor Constantine (310 A.D.) Christianity was declared the state religion, and multitudes of pagans were admitted to the church by baptism alone, without conversion. They brought with them their pagan rites, ceremonies and practices which they gradually introduced into the church with Christian names, all of which corrupted the primitive faith and the church became Romanized and paganized. What makes a church truly catholic is its adherence to the Gospel of Christ and the Apostles' Creed. The Roman Church has added popery and so many other pagan doctrines and practices that many people think it no longer either Christian or catholic. The Reformation of the 16th century was a protest against those pagan doctrines, a wholesale withdrawal from the official church and a return to the primitive catholic Christianity of the New Testament. The Roman Church today can become again a truly catholic church by renouncing popery and those dogmas and practices which are contrary to the Word of God and holding fast to its primitive foundation, on which basis the reunion of all Christian churches could be realized. The name 'catholic,' when applied to the Roman Church exclusively, is a misnomer, for it befits better those Protestant churches which hold fast to the Bible and the Apostles' Creed without any additions whatever. 'For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto them, God shall add unto him the plagues which are written in this book: and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, which are written in this book' (Revelation. 22:18, 19). The true church of Christ is invisible, made up of truly converted people who are to be found in all the visible churches and whose names are written in heaven, and the visible churches exist to train saints for the kingdom of Christ' (Is Romanism in the Bible? p3).
You write: Instead to sticking to the facts of history, you make discredited quotations from your error-riddled protestant fake 'bible' and attach your own corrupted interpretation and notions to your uninspired man made 'scripture', in an irrelevant attempt to escape the question of the origin of the Bible, because you reject the fact that Pope St. Damasus made the Bible in 400 A.D.
TCE: Instead of waffling about 'discredited quotations ... error-riddled protestant fake 'bible' ... corrupted interpretation and notions ... uninspired man made 'scripture' ' when you have made it clear that you are incapable of supporting your libellous claims with facts, why don't Papal Roman Catholics at least attempt to understand the Word of God which still exists to some extent in the Bible's of Papal Rome?
And regarding your claim that 'Pope St. Damasus made the Bible in 400 A.D.' you will find that we have dealt clearly and thoroughly with the history of the Bible and the work done by Jerome, together with the peripheral problems and subsequent continued corruptions by Papal Rome - starting on this page with this heading:
Catholic bishops decided canonicity of the New Testament?
You write: You also resorted to protestant mythologies in a weak attempt to reconstruct a chimerical coherent fabricated history for the scriptures. You also violate your own principle in your unbiblical complaint of an alleged'elite' [sic] interpreting scripture; for in the false religion of protestantism, instead of all the protestant heretics staying home to read their spurious man faked 'bibles' flowing with errors, they all gather together in a congregation to listen to the protestant fantasies and private interpretation of their protestant 'minister.' The protestants have presidents of their man made federations (sects/denominations) and have a man appointed 'hierarchy' to decide upon the basic slogan for their sect upon which no one can deviate, and they formulate their pick and choose creed to which all must subscribe, under pain of exclusion from their federation. Some of these, if not all, protestant federations and associations are democratic in nature and they vote on doctrine and morality, instead of going to the Word of God which is only found in the Catholic Church. Then when their denominations become too liberal in a couple of years they decry it and form new ones and make up their own creeds of protestant evolution contradicting their break-off denomination and it's so called 'hierarchy.' They also proceed to form their own man made invalid 'hierarchy'/'elite' according to whim.
TCE: Just shortly after you accuse us of '... statements ... so superfluous, loquacious, and characterized by so much redundancy that one really has to ask the question if you even know or understand what you are talking about' you now indulge in an excellent example of exactly that with colossal, unsupported accusations that make no worthwhile point at all! You really should do some serious research into the subjects you attack for you can do no more than throw irrelevant and inaccurate insults at ekklesia outside of the Cult of Papal Rome. For your information, orthodox Christians follow Scripture and are led by elders and deacons. It is only those who broke away from Papal Rome in the 'Protestant Reformation' who continue with your false system of priests, bishops, archbishops (but have at least not embraced 'popes'!), and other equally bizarre cults who vote for 'presidents'.
With Papal Rome's history of 'excommunication' it is truly laughable for you to rant about 'pain of exclusion from their federation' as if these 'other churches' really engaged in such things to anything like the extent practised by Papal Rome for centuries and, infinitely worse, the countless thousands who were murdered by your evil cult because they refused to bow the knee to 'papa pope' and his false gospel of sacramental works salvation.
That you can complain that 'protestant federations and associations [which] are democratic in nature and ... vote on doctrine and morality, instead of going to the Word of God which is only found in the Catholic Church' reveals your ignorance further, for any sign of real democratic nature in a 'church' would come about through adherence to the Word of God - not the other way around! The fact that you cannot recognise that democracy is merely a by-product of belief in the Word of God is no surprise since Papal Rome has failed to follow much of the Bible.
Your accusation that these products of your vain imagination become 'too liberal' hardly sits well with the evidence we have already extensively supplied on the un-Biblical and heretical crumbling edifice of the Cult of Papal Rome.
Finally, you finish with a wild rant that contains so many outright lies, exaggerations, and misinterpretations, which we have already refuted in pages which we put on the internet long before you first wrote to us, that we will spare readers the pain and boredom of having to suffer reading your words again. You are one of many cultists (most of them Papal Roman Catholics) who refuse to check out the facts we supply and very rarely even attempt to argue from Scripture because you have allowed the 'popes/Magisterium' to be the Word of God for you. Anyone checking the number of times we have quoted and used Scripture to make a point against the number of times you and other writers from Papal Rome have even mentioned Scripture will quickly realise where the truth lies.
We will simply highlight the main part of your errors in red - underlining your particularly fatuous and inaccurate work - and then supply links to the website page containing our comments on the subject:
If you did not know already, the Bible did not decide to fall out of the sky one day fortuitously into the hands of a lucky layman. Nor did it make itself spontaneously as fantasizing Protestants believe. The Council of Rome (382) defined the Canon, and it was reaffirmed by the Council of Hippo (393), the Third and Fourth Councils of Carthage (397, 418) etc and the Council of Trent; all of these affirmed the Catholic canon as we know it today, while none affirmed the Protestant canon. The exact canon as is found in the Catholic Bible has the support of all Church Fathers. It was in 400 A.D. at the Council of Carthage that the sacred scriptures were put into book form after being reaffirmed, and this was called the Bible (the Book) and also Latin Vulgate (the people's Book). Before this there was no such thing as 'the Bible.' There was only a concept of sacred scripture. The term 'the Bible' refers only to the Catholic Canon etymologically, historically and linguistically, and in no way to the protestant man produced errant pagan canon. It comes fro [sic] the Council of Carthage.
We have demolished these claims, starting with our first reply (in 2003!) to these claims at:
Protestants still use Luther's canon of the Bible instead of the rightful Catholic one?
You claim: When you say the Pope suppressed the Bible, this can only be understood as made up stories.
Since we also proved how Papal Rome suppressed the Bible (see following links - written in 2003!) we only note your typical cultish riposte (of 'do not confuse me with evidence') with pity.
Protestant-Fundamentalism began a hundred years ago? - II
Serious flaws in the work of C.S. Lewis - an apologist for Papal Rome!
Did Luther teach that each individual can interpret Scripture as he 'sees fit'?
You write: Even C.S. Lewis was forced to admit that strange it is that the more the Bible is translated, the less it is read.
Papal Rome made it as difficult as possible for anyone - even their own 'priests' - to read the Bible so it is easy to see why most of her trapped acolytes do not know the Word of God well enough to recognise the deception they are trapped in.
We have already mentioned the serious flaws found in the work of Lewis in other replies. C.S. Lewis was an apologist for Papal Rome and didn't believe in Biblical inerrancy or penal substitution. He believed in purgatory and baptismal regeneration' ('C.S. Lewis Superstar,' Christianity Today, Dec. 2005). The inerrant inspiration of Scripture is a fundamental of the faith, but Lewis denied it. In a letter to the editor of Christianity Today, Feb. 28, 1964, Dr. W. Wesley Shrader, First Baptist Church, Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, warned that 'C.S. Lewis ... would never embrace the (literal infallible) view of the Bible' (F.B.F. News Bulletin, Fundamental Baptist Fellowship, March 4, 1984). Orthodox Christians believe in the historicity of the Bible and that it is a fundamental of the faith, but Lewis denied it when he recorded this view on two historical books: '... Jonah, a tale with as few even pretended historical attachments as Job, grotesque in incident and surely not without a distinct, though of course edifying, vein of typically Jewish humor' ('Modern Theology and Biblical Criticism,' Christian Reflections, p190 - edited by Walter Hooper, Eerdmans). In Sehnsucht: The C. S. Lewis Journal: Volume 9, page 82, (2015) we read that 'Lewis described Esther as 'sacred fiction' in distinction from 'sacred history' and 'believed that other portions of the Bible reworked ancient pagan myths'. Christianity Today reported that Lewis believed in un-Biblical 'baptismal regeneration' and there is no evidence that he experienced more than some kind of mystical conversion. In his book, The Great Divorce (which is about salvation, heaven, and hell), Lewis does not mention the necessity of personal faith in Christ, the blood of Christ, or the new birth but speaks about works and character.
Of even more concern is his denial of another fundamental of the faith, 'penal substitutionary atonement'. While the Bible plainly states that Christ shed His blood and died to satisfy the penalty of God's holy Law, Lewis claimed that it does not matter how one 'defines' the atonement and it is clear that he did not consider it an essential part of Christianity, as this statement reveals:
'You can say that Christ died for our sins. You may say that the Father has forgiven us because Christ has done for us what we ought to have done. You may say that we are washed in the blood of the Lamb. You may say that Christ has defeated death. They are all true. If any of them do not appeal to you, leave it alone and get on with the formula that does. And, whatever you do, do not start quarrelling with other people because they use a different formula from yours.' (Mere Christianity, Harper San Francisco edition, 2001, p182).
This is utter heresy and, according to the Bible, is no salvation at all. The 'blood' is mentioned more than 90 times in the New Testament, and Hebrew makes very clear the importance of our FINAL high priest, after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5:6, 10; 6:20; 7:1-17), who came to shed His blood as a propitiation of all sins: 'And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission' (Hebrews 9:22). Lewis wrote:
'The central Christian belief is that Christ's death has somehow put us right with God and given us a fresh start. Theories as to how it did this are another matter. ... Any theories we build up as to how Christ's death did all of this are, in my view, quite secondary...' (Mere Christianity, Harper San Francisco edition, 2001, pp. 54, 55, 56).
This is unscriptural teaching, for the Bible makes it perfectly clear that our salvation is a matter of a propitiation, a ransom, whereby our sins were washed away by Christ's bloody death, which was offered as a payment to satisfy God's holy Law. Lewis never mentions the doctrine of propitiation, but propitiation was a necessary part of our salvation and the propitiation was made by blood:
'Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God' (Romans 3:25).
God is fully satisfied by the Perfect Sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross (Romans 3:24-25; 1 John 2:2; Hebrews 2:17; Isaiah 5:11). Through Christ's blood we have eternal redemption:
'Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us' (Hebrews 9:12).
Through Christ's blood we can enter into the presence of God, as Scripture makes clear:
'Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus' (Hebrews 10:19)
We do not have eternal redemption and boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Christ because of a 'theory' or 'formula' but because the Word of God gives us the clearest guide so that we can receive this truth and know that we are saved.
As we have already written on our pages to members of other cults, which includes Papal Roman Catholics, salvation is a free gift given by God through grace alone - without works and sacraments playing any part whatsoever! This doctrine is proven from Scripture alone and it is impossible for any cultist to disprove this fact, so thoroughly is it promulgated in the Bible. All Papal Roman Catholics can do is mock Luther because they foolishly believe he was the man who invented this truth - and then some of them even insult God by insisting that Luther did this while sitting on a toilet!
Lewis was misled by Papal Rome and taught that the 'Christ-life' is spread to men through baptism, belief, and the mass:
'There are three things that spread the Christ-life to us: baptism, belief, and that mysterious action which different Christians call by different names - Holy Communion, the Mass, the Lord's Supper. ... I am not saying anything about which of these things is the most essential. My Methodist friend would like me to say more about belief and less (in proportion) about the other two. But I am not going into that' (Mere Christianity, p61).
Lewis was polluted by all of the false trappings of Papal Rome, including his belief in:
purgatory, the sacraments, confession;
prayers for the dead;
denial of the Bible as the literal Word of God;
hell as a state of mind;
the doctrine of a second chance and the possibility of repentance beyond this life;
Further, Lewis never gave up his unholy fascination with paganism;
he was definitely a 'Universalist' and believed that anybody in any religion can be saved without personal faith in Jesus Christ (he clearly would have been thoroughly at home in contemporary Papal Rome!);
he was firmly ecumenical, and a 'prime mover' in the Evangelicals and Catholics Together movement that seeks to re-unite virtually all of the 'Christian churches' of the world regardless of their doctrines (in April 1998, Mormon professor Robert Millet spoke at Wheaton College on the topic of C.S. Lewis and is quoted as saying that C.S. Lewis 'is so well received by Latter-day Saints [Mormons] because of his broad and inclusive vision of Christianity' [John W. Kennedy, 'Southern Baptists Take Up the Mormon Challenge,' Christianity Today, June 15, 1998, p30]);
Roman Catholics love C.S. Lewis as much as any other 'Christian' groups do and his books are typically found in Catholic bookstores since Michael Coren, a Roman Catholic, wrote a biography of Lewis entitled 'C.S. Lewis: The Man Who Created Narnia' (cf. 'The Subtle Magic of C.S. Lewis' Narnia: Michael Coren's Perspective as the New Movie Looms,' Zenit, Dec. 7, 2005).
Lewis confessed his sins regularly to a priest and was given the sacrament of last rites on July 16, 1963 (Roger Lancelyn Green and Walter Hooper, C.S. Lewis: A Biography, 1974, pp. 198, 301).
Thousands of ignorant and unstable people have been misled by following Lewis' belief system instead of taking seriously the warnings of the apostle Paul:
'A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump' (Galatians. 5:9);
'Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?' (1 Corinthians 5:6);
'Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners' (1 Corinthians 15:33);
'Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away' (2 Timothy. 3:5);
'Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them' (Romans 16:17).
You write: You also error [sic] in saying that the Catholic Church says it needs a group of Clergy to interpret scripture. This is false; the infallible Magisterium of the Popes is the Authentic Interpreter and Guardian of Sacred Scripture. The Pope made the Bible and infallibly decided which texts were inspired. The protestant movement incessantly protests against Christianity. The Catholic Church is incapable of error, it is simply perfect. The so-called King James Version of the 'bible' has 33,000 errors. The Revised Version, the Revised Standard Version, and the more recently and [sic] the New English Version, among others, are fraught with well too known errors [sic] to deserve comment.
Since you cannot find any 'well too known errors [sic] to deserve comment' we will not waste further time by bothering with your non-reply and merely refer you to the replies already available on our pages which totally demolish your pretensions!
Those who have been abused by your paedophilic 'priesthood' will also recognise your claims (particularly 'The Catholic Church is incapable of error, it is simply perfect') for what they are!
You write: You present Luther, Zwingli, Calvin, and others in a positive light; presenting their heresies as acts of unrelieved heroism.
TCE: Since we have given a complete picture of their faults in many places we will not trouble ourselves further since you prove yourself too idle to search our site carefully!
You write: John Wyclif believed in ordination and a priesthood that was established by Christ (though he detracts from its dignity). He had many strange theological ideas that not even protestants would believe in, and yet you speak well of him and present him as someone legitimate that is to be followed, and I doubt your theological beliefs are identical in the essential matters with those of Wyclif.
TCE: we have already written extensively about Wyclif at the references above from 2003!
and your false idea that he 'is to be followed' slavishly is a product of your Papal indoctrination - orthodox Christians follow the Lord Jesus Christ and His Scripturally selected and appointed pastors when they follow the Word of God closely. Wyclif's history speaks of a man who based all of his beliefs in the Word of God as far as he understood it - and his knowledge and the practical outworking of his faith was far more accurate than any of the 'popes'!
Like the later 'Reformers', Wyclif and Huss struggled to shake off some of the errors they had learnt from Papal Rome - but they knew enough to be saved into the kingdom of God.
You write: You speak positively of Jan Hus. Hus believed in some Catholic teachings that protestants reject, but he detracted from its dignity. One can only call his ideas wacky, but I'm sure you conveniently don't inform your protestant audience on Hus's beliefs. The Wycliffites and Hussites were just strange, I doubt they can be classified as protestants unless the Mormons and Jehovah's witnesses are classified as such. There is an incongruity between what you say and leave unsaid. Wyclif's fabricated so called 'bible' was riddled with grave errors so much so, that error was as easy to find as water is in an ocean. For instance he translated 'let the children come to me' as 'kill the children' in the New Testament. His errors were very serious, depraved, and profound.
TCE: You are utterly incorrect regarding our statements on Huss - and if you had only taken the time to read our pages on this man and his life (see pages above written April-August, 2003) you would have known this earlier and been saved from making such an embarrassment of erroneous statements!
Readers will notice that you merely speak in general accusations without giving a single example of Hus' beliefs - writing 'detracted from its dignity ... ideas wacky ... just strange ... - which gives away the fact that you know next to nothing about him!
TCE: we have already detailed the facts about John Hus at:
What does the history of the Bible reveal?
Hus (also Huss) studied at the university in Prague, and in 1398 joined the arts faculty as a lecturer. He had taken priestly vows but underwent a conversion, although the details are unclear, which caused him to adopt a simpler life style which was manifested in his spiritual growth and led to him being appointed rector and preacher in Prague's Bethlehem chapel, the centre of the Czech reform movement, in 1402. During these years many of John Wycliffe's ideas influenced Hus, especially those dealing with the spirituality of the church (which he would have been particularly clear about after his extensive work on the Word of God). However, Hus was not solely a product of Wycliffe's theology, because earlier Czech theologians, such as Matthew of Janov, shaped Hus's theological development as well. Whatever the total truth, it is a fact that, by 1407, Hus was clearly identified with the reformists and his evangelical group clearly upset Papal Rome in Bohemia. In 1409 Pope Alexander V empowered the Archbishop of Prague to root out heresy in his diocese and Hus was ordered to stop preaching but refused, and this led to the inevitable excommunication in 1410. When Hus continued to attack the papal politics of the Great Schism and the sale of indulgences, rioting erupted in Prague against the church hierarchy. But Hus received no support from the king and, when the pope threatened to place Prague under interdict, Hus was forced to leave the city in 1412 to live in southern Bohemia. In 1414, with a promise of safe conduct, Hus travelled to the Council of Constance, where he was imprisoned and placed on trial for heresy. He refused to admit that the charges against him were true unless the Council proved so from Scripture which, in the manner Papal Roman Catholics continue to mimic, they failed to do but, nevertheless, he was judged guilty and burned at the stake on July 6, 1415. What did Hus believe that you can honestly use to attack him? Hus's sermons attacked clerical abuses, especially the immorality and high living of the clergy and his theology was still a mixture of evangelical and traditional Roman Catholic doctrines. But he clearly preached against the veneration of the pope by stressing a strong Christocentric faith that emphasized an individual's responsibility before God. He also believed only Christ could forgive sins and he expected a coming day of judgment. Reflecting the long struggle all 'Protestant Reformers' who came out of Papal Rome continued with as they searched the Scriptures to identify truth from the error they had absorbed from Papal Rome, he still accepted the doctrine of purgatory. He also believed that both the wine and the bread should be administered in the Lord's Supper, and held a view of the elements similar to the doctrine of 'consubstantiation'. He emphasized preaching the Word of God to bring about moral and spiritual change in listeners' lives and, to help them read the Scriptures, he also revised a Czech translation of the Bible. As a theologian, Hus helped restore a biblical vision of the church, one that focussed on Christ's teachings and example of purity. Moreover, his stress on preaching and the universal priesthood of believers (not the fake priesthood of Papal Rome) became hallmarks of the later Protestant Reformation. He also encouraged congregational hymn singing, writing many songs himself, and proved to be a strong spiritual leader and a focal point of inspiration to Czech Christians in the centuries following his death.
[Bibliography. J. Hus, The Church, tr. D. S. Schaff; M. Spinka, John Hus and the Czech Reform; John Hus, a Biography; and John Hus' Concept of the Church; M. Spinka, ed., John Hus at the Council of Constance and The Letters of John Hus; J. K. Zeman, The Hussite Movement and the Reformation in Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia (1350-1650): A Bibliographical Study Guide].
In the same manner, while writing 'There is an incongruity between what you [TCE] say and leave unsaid' you claim 'Wyclif's fabricated so called 'bible' was riddled with grave errors so much so, that error was as easy to find as water is in an ocean. For instance he translated 'let the children come to me' as 'kill the children' in the New Testament. His errors were very serious, depraved, and profound - yet you give only one supposed example without mentioning any source - which is not only incongruous, but also no evidence at all!
Wycliffe's Translation - the first complete English translation of the Bible - is available, both Old and New Testaments (dated 1388, original spellings retained) as an 1850 reprint which carries this statement:
'The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments, with the apocryphal books in the earliest English versions made from the Latin Vulgate by John Wycliffe and his followers' (Edited by The Revelation. Josiah Forshall, F.R.S., Late Fellow of Exeter College, and Sir Frederic Madden, K.H. F.R.S. etc. Keeper of the MANUSCRIPTS. in the British Museum. Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1850).
Examination of the phrase 'let the children come to me' in Wyclif's translation reveals his words from the three gospels and we have compared them with the same verses from the American Standard Bible (ASV) and the Fireside New American Bible - Revised Edition (translated by Papal Roman Catholic authorities and which includes the Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur):
Matthew 19:13-14 (ASV) Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should lay his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, Suffer the little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for to such belongeth the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 19:13-14 (Wycliffe's Bible Translation - 1388) Thanne litle children weren brouyte to hym, that he schulde putte hondis to hem, and preie. And the disciplis blamyden hem. But Jhesus seide to hem, Suffre ye that litle children come to me, and nyle ye forbede hem; for of siche is the kyngdom of heuenes.
Matthew 19:13-14 (Fireside New American Bible - Revised Edition) Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked them, but Jesus said, 'Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.'
Mark 10:13-14 (ASV) And they were bringing unto him little children, that he should touch them: and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was moved with indignation, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me; forbid them not: for to such belongeth the kingdom of God.
Mark 10:13-14 (Wycliffe's Bible Translation - 1388) And thei brouyten to hym litle children, that he schulde touche hem; and the disciplis threteneden the men, that brouyten hem. And whanne Jhesus hadde seyn hem, he baar heuy, and seide to hem, Suffre ye litle children to come to me, and forbede ye hem not, for of suche is the kyngdom of God.
Mark 10:13-14 (Fireside New American Bible - Revised Edition) And people were bringing children to him that he might touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them, 'Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
Luke 18:15-16 (ASV) And they were bringing unto him also their babes, that he should touch them: but when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them unto him, saying, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for to such belongeth the kingdom of God.
Luke 18:15-16 (Wycliffe's Bible Translation - 1388) And thei brouyten to hym yonge children, that he schulde touche hem; and whanne the disciplis saien this thing, thei blameden hem. But Jhesus clepide togider hem, and seide, Suffre ye children to come to me, and nyle ye forbede hem, for of siche is the kyngdom of heuenes.
Luke 18:15-16 (Fireside New American Bible - Revised Edition): People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them, and when the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. Jesus, however, called the children to himself and said, 'Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
Apart from the strangeness of the Old English in Wycliffe's translation it is easy to compare the words and see that the same truth is transmitted. Search as you may, you will not find that Wycliffe wrote that Jesus said 'kill the children'!
The original work by Wycliffe and his associates was unusual in that the text used for the translation was the Latin Vulgate of Jerome, rather than the original Greek and Hebrew. Greek had begun to die out in western Europe after Constantine moved the capital to the east and that was how Latin became the language of scholars in the west. By the middle ages, Greek was hardly known in western Europe and would not be studied in any university until 1458 (at the University of Paris). As a result of a situation caused solely by Papal Rome, her clergy in the west learnt Latin, but not Greek or Hebrew, for a thousand years. Thus the situation developed in which errors multiplied in Jerome's already flawed Vulgate (as we have already amply described in our expose of Jerome and the Vulgate!).
In 1381 Wycliffe was forced out of Oxford for denying Papal Rome's false doctrine of transubstantiation and retired to Lutterworth where he produced a voluminous amount of writing until his death in 1384. 'Some 57 Latin works were written between 1380 and December 1384' (David Daniel, The Bible in English, p73). It was during this time that he completed the first English Bible and his record of Latin works would suggest that he was more than capable of translating from that language. Though some modern scholars have claimed that Wycliffe did not do any of the actual translation himself, older historians did not question Wycliffe's role in the work, and all available evidence supports the view that the work was Wycliffe's. Wycliffe may well have had assistance in the work and the significant revisions that followed are a matter of record, particularly after his death.
Wycliffe was well-equipped for his future work, being born in Yorkshire in 1324, educated at Oxford, becoming a fellow of Merton College (from ~1361-1366) and then Master of Balliol College, finally receiving a doctorate in theology in 1372. Wycliffe was a Catholic priest but began to preach against Rome's errors in his mid-30s. Like the other 'Reformers' who followed he did not reject Rome as soon as he began to recognise her errors, but gradually grew in his understanding of Scripture. There is a lot we do not know about his doctrine, as many of his writings have perished, but we do know that Wycliffe exposed many of Papal Rome's errors. Wycliffe's foundational doctrine was that the Bible is the sole authority for faith and practice and that men have the right to interpret Scripture for themselves before the Lord (and not be dependent upon Papal Rome). He said: 'Believers should ascertain for themselves what are the true matters of their faith, by having the Scriptures in a language which all may understand' and one of Wycliffe's major works was 'On the Truth of Sacred Scripture,' which was 'a defence of the authority and inerrancy of the Bible.'
In typical Papal fashion, in May 1382, Wycliffe was called before yet another synod of ecclesiastical authorities and charged specifically with 10 heresies and 16 errors and, predictably, he was condemned, his writings forbidden, and authority to imprison anyone who believed the condemned doctrines was also obtained from the young king Richard II (or more probably from those controlling him).
None of this evidence supports your evil claim that 'Wyclif's fabricated so called 'bible' was riddled with grave errors so much so, that error was as easy to find as water is in an ocean ... he translated 'let the children come to me' as 'kill the children' in the New Testament ... His errors were very serious, depraved, and profound '.
Clearly, you should come up with some solid evidence or apologise for your libellous attack!
While Papal Rome perpetuates the myth of Jerome's 'perfect' Vulgate, it is a fact that Erasmus was called on to correct Jerome's Latin and, when William Tyndale's translation was complete it was found to be more accurate to the Greek than either Jerome's or Erasmus'. This should be no surprise since Tyndale was trained in Greek and Hebrew, earned his bachelor's degree from Oxford in 1512 (aged 16 or 17!), and his master's degree in 1515. He completed further extensive study at Cambridge, became fluent in six or seven languages, and experts agree that his sense of English style was unparalleled.
For further information on Tyndale see our previous work at:
The true history of Bible translation and circulation?
Protestant-Fundamentalism began a hundred years ago? - II
Apart from its other problems the Latin Vulgate suffered from severe shortcomings in its translation. A major problem is that Latin does not have the definite article - but the article occurs in the Greek New Testament almost 20,000 times and understanding its use is vital for hundreds of passages. But it is believed that Wycliffe was unaware of this if, as appears to be the case, he only used the Latin text as his base.
The Wycliffe Bible went through two editions (~1382 and ~1395 AD). The later revision was by Wycliffe's assistant, John Purvey, and was a significant improvement, but it is true that they were never going to be the best examples of English prose. The first edition by Wycliffe suffered because it followed the Vulgate rigidly, even retaining the Latin word order when it made no sense in English. The Oxford manuscript which exists in the Bodleian Library, 959 E, is probably the original first edition of the Wycliffe Bible and, although experts concede that the 'style' is extremely wooden, none mention serious errors outside of the Latin to English problem mentioned here.
The significance of the Wycliffe translation was that it was the first complete Bible in English - and the first complete Bible in any modern European language so that it began to break down the power structures of Papal Rome and meant that lay people no longer had to rely on 'priests' to know the God of the Word! People could now know His will and recognise how they had been misled by their 'spiritual leaders'. Thus the inevitable happened and the power of Papal Rome was challenged so that, by 1408, even reading the Bible in English was outlawed and people owned a copy at risk of liberty and life. Wycliffe's translation of the Word of God had become so powerful that, despite his death, in 1415 the Pope decreed that his bones should be dug up, burned, and the ashes scattered on the River Swift. His translation was completed more than sixty years before the invention of the movable-type printing press so all Wycliffe Bibles were handwritten copies, which reduced its impact considerably, and meant that one Bible could take up to a year to copy. Nonetheless, thousands of copies were made and it is possible that, like Jerome's Vulgate, copyists errors arose because of the lack of zeal which never approached that of the Jewish scribes and believers of Jesus' day who copied and preserved the Word of God that led to the phenomenal accuracy of the Old and New Testaments.
(Continued on page 323)