Saturday, June 02, 2007

A response to GNRHead

A Response and Challenge to GNRHead

A internet poster named William, going by the handle GNRHead, has posted a series of videos on the internet, in which he defends Roman Catholic theology, with an emphasis on patristic issues. This is a response to his most recent video here (link here, warning, near profanity employed).

I'm not a big fan of the video format, because it is a slow format, particular if a conversation speed of delivery is used.

As GNRHead is discovering, there are many kinds of apologetics out there on the internet, including vile, abusive apologetics. I am sorry that he has been a recipient of those attacks. I also appreciate his apparently sincere belief that the Early Church Fathers held to Roman Catholic doctrines.

On the other hand, I firmly disagree.

Let me provide a single example, and permit GNRHead decide whether he would like to continue the interaction.

GNRHead states that "every single early church father agrees that Peter was the rock" in Matthew 16:18. That's simply not true.

In my own research, every time before the third century that an Early Church Father explains a metaphorical use of the term "Rock" they make that refer to Christ, not Peter.

Likewise, in the Shepherd of Hermas, the rock is Christ, the tower is the church, and the tower is built upon the rock.

Indeed, the first time an "Early Church Father" that might be taken to support the view you suggest is Tertullian in his letter against Marcion, some time around the the turn of the 3rd century.

Yet even Tertullian in later writing comments that Peter was called Peter in order to typify Christ, the Rock. And we look back more carefully at what Tertullian wrote in the single passage where Tertullian makes the connection, you will see that Tertullian writes not that Peter was the rock, but that Peter was called the rock.

Nevertheless, a further time Tertullian appears to call Peter the rock, again against Marcion.

In addition to that Hippolytus (a Bishop of Rome, though not not - according to the modern RCC, a pope, but an anti-pope), in his Discourse on the Holy Theophany, makes two references that could be taken to mean that Peter was the rock. He was writing in the first half of the 3rd century.

Then Cyprian applies the term rock to Peter, but not just to Peter but to all the bishops of the Church. Firmillian, in contrast, applied the term only to Peter, and mocked Stephen for claiming to sit in the chair of Peter. Both would have been writing toward the middle of the third century.

If you are reckoning Early Church Fathers as those before the council of Nicea, I wonder what makes you think that "all" of them held your view: the vast majority make no reference at all to the subject, and the few who mention it do so in very few places.

So here's the challenge to you:

Back up your claim that "every single early church father agrees that Peter was the rock" and then reconcile that with Augustine, who explicitly stated that it was mistaken to say that Peter was the rock.

Finally, note that even Trent does not have your back. After all Trent writes:

"For which cause, this council has thought good, that the Symbol of faith which the holy Roman Church makes use of,--as being that principle wherein all who profess the faith of Christ necessarily agree, and that firm and alone foundation against which the gates of hell shall never prevail,--be expressed in the very same words in which it is read in all the churches."

Faith, not Peter, is described as being the foundation by Trent, which if you are to remain RCC, you must be bound to accept as true.

What will it be then? Is Peter or Faith in Christ the Rock in Matthew 16:18?

-Turretinfan

2 comments:

William said...

Now if I had been directed to this post earlier I would have done a good job to it, but I was barely shown it so here goes my quick response:

what he posted:

A internet poster named William, going by the handle GNRHead, has posted a series of videos on the internet, in which he defends Roman Catholic theology, with an emphasis on patristic issues. This is a response to his most recent video here (link here, warning, near profanity employed).

My response:
Near profanity is NEVER in my videos. A complete lie.



what he says: I also appreciate his apparently sincere belief that the Early Church Fathers held to Roman Catholic doctrines.

On the other hand, I firmly disagree.

My response:
Good for you, too bad the Early Church was Catholic in it's decrees and all it's beliefs. Not Protestant


what he says:
GNRHead states that "every single early church father agrees that Peter was the rock" in Matthew 16:18. That's simply not true.

My response:
It is true, as I demonstrated in my responses to Protestant apologist Moses Flores sloppy videos.

what he says:
In my own research, every time before the third century that an Early Church Father explains a metaphorical use of the term "Rock" they make that refer to Christ, not Peter.

My response:
Well maybe you should study a bit more, cause your studies are sloppy at that. I have a full video response to this completely uneducated stance on Youtube in video format already. That is an utterly fallacious and sloppy position to hold and I name many many many Fathers that believed otherwise.

what he says:
Likewise, in the Shepherd of Hermas, the rock is Christ, the tower is the church, and the tower is built upon the rock.

My response:
No one denies that Christ is the eternal Rock. We agree with that, just as Peter is the vicarious rock. In the Shepherd of Hermas we are not dealing with a refutation of the passage of Mt.16, so your parallelism fails and is sloppy at that.

what he says:
Indeed, the first time an "Early Church Father" that might be taken to support the view you suggest is Turtullian in his letter against Marcion, some time around the the turn of the 3rd century.

My response: This simply is not true and if anyone wants quotes as proof I will show it, not just blow smoke up your nose.

what he says:
Yet even Turtullian in later writing comments that Peter was called Peter in order to typify Christ, the Rock. And we look back more carefully at what Turtullian wrote in the single passage where Turtullian makes the connection, you will see that Turtullian writes not that Peter was the rock, but that Peter was called the rock.

My response:
This is so sloppy it doesn't deserve a response. First off, it's TERTULLIAN, as the correct spelling, secondly no one claims Peter was actually a rock in the sense of a Rock you can hold, so your assertion is a failure and makes no sense at all.


what he says:
Then Cyprian applies the term rock to Peter, but not just to Peter but to all the bishops of the Church.

my response:

I covered this and there's no disagreement here nor does that contradict the Primacy of the Pope, which Cyprian affirms many times over even out of this quotation.

what he says:
Firmillian, in contrast, applied the term only to Peter, and mocked Stephen for claiming to sit in the chair of Peter. Both would have been writing toward the middle of the third century.

My response:
Looks like someone is desperately grasping at James White arguments, I already fully responded to this in a youtube posting.

what he says:
If you are reckoning Early Church Fathers as those before the council of Nicea, I wonder what makes you think that "all" of them held your view: the vast majority make no reference at all to the subject, and the few who mention it do so in very few places.

My response:
you are simply incorrect, the majority make clear reference to this and that direct passage saying that Peter was indeed the Rock, so you are once again in ERROR.


what he says:
So here's the challenge to you:

Back up your claim that "every single early church father agrees that Peter was the rock" and then reconcile that with Augustine, who explicitly stated that it was mistaken to say that Peter was the rock.

my response:
I already proved that each time a Protestant attempts to point to a Father and claim he didn't view Peter as the Rock that it's simply untrue. In my video response to a youtuber I pointed out that Augustine held that Christ was also the Rock, but never abandoned his claim to Peter being the Rock, as he STILL calls Peter the Rock in a quotation AFTER the one you are thinking of!

what he says:
Finally, note that even Trent does not have your back. After all Trent writes:

"For which cause, this council has thought good, that the Symbol of faith which the holy Roman Church makes use of,--as being that principle wherein all who profess the faith of Christ necessarily agree, and that firm and alone foundation against which the gates of hell shall never prevail,--be expressed in the very same words in which it is read in all the churches."

Faith, not Peter, is described as being the foundation by Trent, which if you are to remain RCC, you must be bound to accept as true.

My response:
It is true that Faith is the foundation, but unlike your sloppy and sad misreadings, the Church never disavows that Peter is the Rock. You simply are neither an apologist or someone well read in Early Church History or Biblical teachings. Simply because Faith is called a foundation that does not make it that Peter was not the Rock of the Church. Where is your logic. Is illogicality your true armor?

what he says:
What will it be then? Is Peter or Faith in Christ the Rock in Matthew 16:18?

My response:
My response is the LOGICAL one buddy, you cannot SEPARATE Peter's FAITH from his person nor can you separate the Fact that Christ calls Peter the Rock upon which he will build his Church! It is because of Peter's revelation from GOD and faith in Christ that he is entrusted with the Keys of the Kingdom and called the Rock! Refute that!

Turretinfan said...

Thanks, William, for your comments. I have addressed them fully in a new post (link).

-Turretinfan