Saturday, September 01, 2007

Question for Kurschner Regarding

"If You Understand One Thing About The "King James Only" Phenomenon it is Imperative to Know This ... The textual end justifies the textual means. They are motivated only in defending a modern printed text and any questions of methodology are irrelevant because they are governed by their a priori that the Textus Receptus (the Greek printed edition that lies behind the KJV) is without error. " (source)

Brother K,

Is it really their position that the Textus Receptus (i.e. one of Stephens' editions of the Greek testament) is without error, or is it rather that the English translation is without error?

I've always had the impression in my discussions with folks who consider themselves KJVO that it is the translation that is without error, not the underlying Greek (or Hebrew, for that matter). Take, for example, this comment: "the pure and whole Word of God, the traditional text (in English) Authorized Version, 1611.," from "Plain Path Puritan" (source).

Did you have a different impression, or what?

As to the underlying point of the article linked above (namely, don't take your sources out of context), that's a perfectly valid criticism and something I see all the time not only from KJVO advocates but from armchair theologians of these Internet times.


Response to Kurschner's "8 Reasons"

Brother Alan Kurschner has posted an article entitled, "8 Reasons Why It Is Fallacious for KJVO Advocates to Invoke the Majority Rule" (link)

Turretinfan Responds:

As a preliminary matter it is important to note that the present author is not a KJVO advocate, but rather a KJV-preferred advocate. With that caveat, the present author commends Kurschner for pointing several important weaknesses in the KJVO position, but recommends several refinements.

1. The first reason AK proposes is that the Greek text behind the KJV is not the "Majority Text," but the Textus Receptus. AK's underlying point is valid: the KJV translators did not count the number of Greek manuscripts on each side of a reading and side with the majority of available manuscripts. So, to claim that the KJV should be accepted on a democratic principle of majority rule does not fully fly.

Several clarifications should be made, though:
a) the raw number of differences between the "Majority Text" and the TR may seem pretty large. Nevertheless, the vast bulk of those differences are inconsequential (spelling differences/word order differences/typographic ommissions) to translation.
b) both the raw number and number of significant differences is higher between the majority text and the Westcott & Hort (WH) text (or its modern offshoots, such as the Nestle-Aland text, and what I assume is AK's preferred text at the moment, the NA27). Thus, if failure to conform to the MT is supposed to be a criticism of the TR, it applies with greater force to the NA27.
c) the KJV was not simply a translation from the Hebrew and Greek testaments and manuscripts. Both AK and (to be fair) the KJVO advocates seems to have overlooked that the KJV translators relied not only the Greek documents but the available versions: most notably the Latin Vulgate.

2. The second reason AK provides is five examples of passages where the differences allegedly matter for translation purposes, and where the KJV reads in accordance with the minority of Greek texts. AK provides one example, Ephesians 3:9, where he asserts that the KJV follows a variant found in only one half of one percent of the Greek documents (there is apparently at least one typo in AK's article: he either intends to say what the present author has reported, or the more extreme claim of five hundreths of one percent of the Greek documents).

It may be worth digging in a bit on this verse:

(KJV - 1769) And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

The variant in question is "fellowship" as opposed to "administration/dispensation/stewardship." The two words sound much a like in Greek, but have a somewhat different spelling. Furthermore, in some cases, the sense between the two words is not that different (see, for example, 2 Corinthians 8:4).

As a matter of clarification, the present author is suspicious of Mr. Kurschner's statistical claim. Tischendorf acknowledges this reading to be found in the margin of 37 (a cursive manuscript) , and suggests that all other manuscripts and versions have the majority reading. Obviously, though, not all of the manuscripts had been collated in Tischendorf's day. Furthermore, somehow "fellowship" got into the English text.

It did not get there from the Wycliffe translation (because Wycliffe translated from the Vulgate). It was not in the Rheims New Testament, because the RNT also primarily translated from the Vulgate (though, clearly, from a later Vulgate than Wycliffe used).

The minority reading is found in Tyndale's Bible, the Coverdale Bible, (the Matthew-Tyndale Bible and the Great Bible were not checked, but almost certainly contain the reading - any reader who has ready access and can verify, please do), the Bishops' Bible, and the Geneva Bible.

The variant is also found in Beza's New Testament (in Latin) and in Stephens' printed Greek Testament (though not in the Complutensian Polyglott, according to the testimony of Gill).

Tyndale apparently relied on Erasmus' 1516 translation as one source of his English translation of the New Testament. Sadly, the present author does not have a copy of Erasmus' 1516 translation to confirm whether it contained the variant.

In any event, the most apparent source of the variant in the English Bible is Erasmus' printing, and the adoption of Erasmus' reading in Beza's Latin, Stephens' Greek (aka Textus Receptus), and Tyndale's English Bibles.

Nevertheless, there is no indication that Erasmus had access to manuscript 37 of Paul's epistles, and there is no reason to suppose that Erasmus would have gleaned such a reading by reverse translation from the Vulgate. Accordingly, there are two other hypotheses: either Erasmus had access to another manuscript (now lost, inaccurately collated, or uncollated) that included such a reading, or Erasmus made the same "error" that was made in manuscript 37.

So, in any event, there is at least one and probably two or more Greek manuscripts that support the variant reading. Thus, 99.5% of the manuscripts against the reading may be a bit of an extreme claim (that would mean that there are 199 manuscripts that have the majority reading, and I'm not confident that there are even 199 manuscripts of Paul's epistle to the Ephesians that include the 9th verse of the 3d chapter.

But, frankly, the precise statistical claim is really a minor detail compared with the main point here. The main point is that the vast weight of the textual evidence from handwritten manuscripts and versions suggests that the original text was "dispensation/stewardship" not "fellowship." Thus, while "fellowship" is an excellent translation of the text of the TR, the TR itself may be incorrect in its transcription, on account (perhaps) of following Erasmsus' printed edition.

Nevertheless, while this may provide a point on which the KJV translation could be improved, it's not a reason to adopt the modern translations. For example, the modern translations typically omit "by Jesus Christ" at the end of verse 9, while the KJV properly retains that phrase and the doctrine that phrase teaches. In contrast, the semantic difference between fellowship and stewardship/dispension is small both in English and Greek.

3. AK's third reason is to assert that the "Byzantine text-form" has more Greek manuscripts attesting it than the "Alexandrian" and "Western" text-forms because historical reasons: Alexandria was taken by the evil forces of Islam, and Western Europe abandoned Greek for Latin. AK asserts that but-for those historical reasons, the copying of the other text forms would have continued apace. This point is just speculation on AK's part. AK does not know (and cannot establish) that those events are the cause for the disappearance of the Alexandrian and Western text-forms. Nevertheless, if this argument is going to be used, one might add that there was more intense persecution of Christians in Western Europe and North Africa under the pre-Christian Roman empire, and consequently more Bible-burnings there. If one is going to speculate - the sky is the limit.

4. AK's fourth objection is: why should we conclude that more attestations of a reading is better than fewer attestations? This question has a rather obvious answer. We expect that scribes tried to copy well from good sources, and not from just any manuscript that they could find. We don't expect to see many copies of the mutilated gospels produced by early heretics. Also, even if a scribe could not tell a good copy from a bad copy, we have no reason to suppose that bad copies were generally used as sources more often than good copies. Accordingly, if a reading is found in a majority of the manuscripts, we would ordinarily expect that such a reading would be more likely to represent the correct reading. Of course, the use of a majority principle cannot be a rigid rule, and there certainly may be cases (the Johanine comma is one) where the majority of texts may have been corrupted.

5. AK's fifth reason is the fact that many KJVO advocates "incessantly denounce" the use of "rational principles" by modern critics. Clearly such a denunciation is inappropriate. And AK is quite right to point out that KJVO advocates attempt to use "rational" principles of their own. Clearly, the problem is that there is a vocal anti-intellectual movement that is reacting emotionally to the mutilation of Scriptures by modern "scholars." Don't throw the baby of scholarship out with the bathwater of modern textual critical trends and theories. It is important to be reasonable in the discussion, and one cannot do that without rational prinicples.

6. Next, AK argues that the Majority Text was not the majority before 900 A.D. This assertion, however, is uninformed speculation. AK simply does not have the data to support it. The Majority Text is not the majority among texts that were written before 900 A.D. that survive to the present day, but virtually all such texts have perished. To imagine that the handful of pre-900 texts we have today is a valid statistical sample of the then-extant texts is to betray one's lack of familiarity with history, geography, and statistics.

7. AK's seventh point relies on his flawed sixth point.

8. AK's eighth point is to note that there are additional problems with respect to the transmission of the Old Testament. That's an interesting topic, but without examples, it doesn't really add much to the debate. It is instructive to consider some of the recent work that is being done in critical reassambly of the LXX translation of the OT by Prof. Pietersma (link) and others.

Finally, AK's conclusion is a bit different from what I would suggest. There is value in a majority principle of textual criticism. Of course, mere quantity absolutely alone is not a textual critical technique that makes sense. Nevertheless, a majority principle is a useful tool for providing some kind of default position in a textual analysis.

AK's underlying apparent view that one should not ignore the quality of the texts is also important, though perhaps not in the way that AK intends. Having W&H's stamp of approval does not make a manuscript good, nor does (necessarily) having homogenous readings making a manuscript bad.

Furthermore, AK should be aware that (at least some) KJVO advocates do consider the quality of the texts. In fact, it is a frequent criticism of the Alexandrian family of texts that they are of low quality. If there are KJVO folks who claim that the only way to decide whether a text is good whether it conforms to the majority, then they are inconsistent (or simply bootstrapping) when they argue at a later time that Alexandrian manuscripts are of low quality.

This inconsistency feeds back into the comment above about what AK is probably thinking. AK seems to have largely adopted the late 19th century principles and attitudes of New Testament textual criticism. If so, when he speaks of a manuscript being good, he may just mean "old," because a number of facile assumptions have led the modern textual critical community to equate "old" and "good."

Old can be a good thing for a text, but other considerations can vastly outweigh the age of text in considering its importance for the purposes of textual criticism. Furthermore, in some instaces, age can be a negative factor: it can indicate disuse, which can suggest contemporary distrust.

So, on the whole, hats off to AK for highlighting some inconsistencies of argument among KJVO advocates, for highlighting a verse (Ephesians 3:9 "fellowship") where the KJV might reasonably be amended to conform more closely to the original text (apparently "stewardship/dispensation" or perhaps "administration" as the NASB and NIV have), and for providing an illustration of the importance of knowing the history of the text.

I would encourage AK to consider that Ephesians 3:9 provides an illustration of how our English text came to us: not by a work of magic by the KJV translators, but by the translators standing on the shoulders of previous translators and copyists. Occassionally, as a result of overreliance on the work of others, the KJV translators may have erred. Nevertheless, of the versions widely available in print, the KJV is the best English translation available for overall faithfulness to the original.


Friday, August 31, 2007

God Disposes the Lot the Same Way Twice

Or, why one should not assume that arguments from probabilty provide truth: link.
Sometimes God arranges it that unexpected things happen. What is probably even more surprising to the average Joe is that this is not the first time something like this has happened: it's the third time a jackpot winner has won a second jackpot in New York Lotto history.

None of the above should be misconstrued as encouraging people to gamble.

Work for a living, don't throw money down the drain hoping to get something for nothing.

May God give us diligence,


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Several Birds with One Stone

The following passage of Scripture addresses several topics that have come up lately in this author's work on the blog.

First, it relates to soteriology generally, and thus can be addressed toward the challenge I have already issued.

Second, it relates to human merit, and thus can be addressed to Godith's comments regarding the RCC.

Third, it relates to another topic that I have been working on, for this blog, but have not presented yet. That topic will be a long time in coming. Nevertheless, this tidbit for now.

Having discussed his faithful adherence to the outward constraints of the law of Moses, Paul continues with the passage under discussion:

Philippians 3:7-14
7But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 8Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 13Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

In this passage, Paul speaks of the inadequacy of man's "righteousness." Paul was a zealous adherent of the most outwardly strict sect of the Jews. His outward adherence to the Mosaic law began on the eighth day of his life with circumcision, and continued with unparallel zeal until his vision on the road to Damascus. Nevertheless, all that "righteousness" Paul considers dung.

If verse 7 were the last verse of the discussion, many who hold to a view of work's righteousness salvation would be content. "The works of Judaism - they were the problem," such folks might say. That, however, is not Paul's point.

Paul clarifies by stating that he considers everything loss (i.e. a negative) because the knowledge of His Lord Jesus Christ is exceeding it. Paul explains that for Christ Paul lost (i.e. subtracted) everything and considers all such dung, so that he can obtain Christ and be found in Christ.

At this point it is worth taking a brief excursis to explain what Paul means. What does he mean by "to be found in Christ"? Paul is referring to the day of judgment, when men will be judged as either worthy of eternal life, or of eternal death. Paul is willing to give up all earthly righteousness in order to be found in Christ on that day. And what does it mean to be found in Christ? It means to have Christ's righteousness on one's account.

As Paul explains, he wants to be found in Christ, not having his own (i.e. Paul's) righteousness (depending on obedience to the commands of the law), but that righteousness of Christ that comes through faith, in other words, the righteousness that is of God and by faith:

- the knowledge of Christ and the power of his resurrection
- the fellowship of his suffering
- assimilation into his death

so that, in that way, he can arrive at the resurrection of the dead.

But Paul is quick to point out that Paul has not arrived and is not perfect at the present time. (Wesleyean perfectionists, beware) Instead, Paul states that he chases, so that he may grasp the thing for which he is being grasped by Jesus Christ.

In other words, contrary to the assertions of the RCCs and the consistent Arminians, Paul is not saying that he is perfect now, but may risk falling away later, instead Paul is saying that his sanctification is not complete. He has not been resurrected with Christ.

Nevertheless, Paul is confident that he has been grasped by Christ. Paul runs, but not as though he only hoped to obtain: he is reaching out to grasp, but Christ has already grasped him. Paul explains that he does not consider himself to have grasped already, but instead presses on toward the goal of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

In the context immediately following the passage above, Paul goes on to explain that this should be the mindset of all believers: Christ has grasped us in his resurrection, but we - living out our lives - are running toward that goal, admitting that we have done is nothing, and placing all our confidence in Christ.

After a brief excursis regarding those who have a different mentality, Paul explains that our mentality is different because our citizenship is in heaven, the place from which we expect our deliverer, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our vile selves like unto his glorious self, according to the operation by which he can subordinate everything to himself.

In other words, Paul recognizes that he will be made righteous only by the power of God, not by his effort. In short, we are vile, but Christ is glorious: our hope is not in our merit, but in Christ's ability to transform our meritless selves into the likeness of his glory. We run - not motivated by a mere wishful desire to attain - but by a recognition that Christ has already attained for us. We live unto Him, because we are citizens of Heaven, looking forward to the resurrection - the power of God - not at ourselves, but at Him.

A final note is worthy of mention: the Christ whom Paul worships has the power to subdue all things to himself, and Paul's confidence is in that ability. That trust is inconsistent with any view either that Christ is unable or unwilling to subdue man's will to himself: in short Paul's trust in the Power of God is a refutation of synergism.

Praise be to our Risen, Ascended, and Coming-Again Savior!


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

GNRHead Responds - TurretinFan Rebuts

In a previous post, the present blogger had posted a response to a video by GNRHead (link to TurretinFan's response). Now, GNRHead has provided comments regarding that posting. His comments are reproduced using block quotations below. His response is line-by-line with respect to much of the original post, and accordingly, his quotation of the original post has been retained.

GNRHead writes:
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:

TF responds:
Thanks for your response.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:
A rose by any other name.
Around 45 seconds into your video you use two abbreviated profanities, in summarizing the responses you have received. Hence my warning.

GNRHead writes:
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

TF responds:

Such a claim is both obviously false, a bit of a red herring, and undermines GNRHead's position.

The allegation is obviously false, because the Early Church was not "Catholic" either in the sense of having universal agreement or in the sense of holding to the dogma of the modern Roman Catholic Church.

The allegation is a bit of a red herring, because Protestantism is defined by references to various corruptions in the Roman Catholic Church that were "protested" by the Reformers. Before those corruptions entered, naturally no one protested them. Thus, one does not see an outcry over the use of Indulgences in the Early Church, not because everyone agreed with the modern and/or medieval Roman Catholic views on Indulgences, but because no one had heard of either of those views yet.

The allegation undermines GNRHead's position, because the Early Church may not have been - to take an example - part of the PCA (or any other modern Protestant body), but they were also not part of the modern Roman Catholic Church.

GNR writes:
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.

TF responds:

Substantively: no it is not true. But feel free to attempt demonstrate it, if you feel you can.

Formally: calling someone else's presentation "sloppy" is obviously not a substantive refutation. Calling their presentation "sloppy" in a sentence that contains a grammatical error is at least mildly ironic.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:

Formally: see above, calling something "sloppy," is not a refutation. The same principle applies to labelling things pejoratively and exhorting one's opponent to further study. The mild irony above is amplified here, where you use "cause" in place of "because," misuse the term "fallacious," and engage in a run-on sentence.
Quasi-Substantively: The thrice repeated "many" with reference to the number of Fathers that believed otherwise is not a substitute for simply enumerating the "Fathers" that supposedly "believed otherwise."
Substantively: In fact, as your own response below demonstrates, you yourself appear to recognize that many Fathers identified the use of the figure "Rock" in Scripture as pointing to Christ Himself. Thus, your disputation on this point appears to be internally inconsistent. Perhaps you would care to clarify. Do you mean to claim that early Fathers did not identify the figure of "Rock" with Christ, or do you have another claim in mind?

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF writes:
Formally: See above regarding the "sloppy" argument, with a hint of irony regarding your use of "refutation."
Substantively: The Shepherd of Hermas is the earliest Christian writing that addresses the church being built on a rock, and explicitly identifies that rock with Christ. The writing does not explicitly reference Matthew 16, but then again, SoH doesn't refer to any Scripture at all, except, arguably to Moses' writings: "'The Lord is near to them who return unto Him,' as it is written in Eldad and Modat, who prophesied to the people in the wilderness."
Nevertheless, the Shepherd of Hermas is significant because of its use of the same church-built-on-a-rock figure, and because it explicitly identifies the rock as Christ.
GNRHead writes:
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.
TF responds:

This author is waiting on tenterhooks for the smoke-free proof. Obviously, there is no way I could demonstrate that there is not some earlier relevant writing, so let's see some quotations, GNRHead.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:

I did misspell Tertullian's name. (And I have no corrected that error in the original post. Thank you for pointing it out to me.)

As for the reply that Peter was not literally a rock, that's irrelevant: you've missed the point of the argument. The point is that Peter was called the rock, but Jesus IS the rock. Of course, Jesus is human, not granite.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:
The alleged primacy of the pope would be an interesting topic for another time.
The point was simply to observe that Cyprian did not uniquely identify Peter with the rock. Since that point appears to be granted, we can move on.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:

Substantively: While the present author will certainly diligently read all of GNRHead's youtube videos, it would be more useful if the full response (or even an abbreviated response) were provided here, in a media that is more readily searchable.

Formally: Thanks for the James White association. He is a much more well known debunker of RCC myths than I am.

GNRHead writes:
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.

TF responds:
GNRHead's contentions here are clearly wrong. As noted above, the vast majority of ante-nicean fathers make no mention of the issue. That's simply a matter of fact. The appropriate rebuttal would be to list the ante-nicean fathers who do address the subject, and (if possible) cite where they address the subject, so the claim could be verified.
There is a simple reason that GNRHead does not provide such a list: the list would not support GNRHead's exagerated claims.
Capitalizing "ERROR" is not a rebuttal that works here, citing fathers is really the only way to establish the claims that have been made.
Note, however, that GNRHead has switched from "all" to "the majority." That alone should be enough of a concession to convince any fair-minded person that GNRHead's original claims were untenable.

GNRHead writes:
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!

TF replies:
Again, oblique references to youtube videos are not that helpful. Furthermore, rather than simply asserting that "Augustine ... never abandoned his claim to Peter being the Rock" it would be helpful if you would provide a citation, so that the reader could confirm whether there is merit in what you have to say. Perhaps, in any event, it would be safer for you not to assume that you know what quotation I'm thinking of, and just present your own demonstration.

The challenge still stands: back up your claim with patristic quotations.

GNRHead writes:
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?

TF responds:
a) Trent does not explicitly say "Peter is not the Rock." Instead, Trent says that "Faith" is the foundation, and that it is so "alone." Please feel free to disagree, but please explain how it can be so "alone" and how Peter can also be the foundation?
b) The logical principle involved is the law of the excluded middle. Either faith alone is the foundation, or faith not alone is the foundation: both cannot be true.
c) Formally: "illogicality" - that's good for a chuckle.
d) No, I use a sword.

GNRHead writes:
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!

TF responds:

Sure you can separate Peter's faith from his person. Why couldn't you? It's easy to do: I have the faith of the apostle, though I am not him. I believe that Jesus is the Christ, and yet I am not Simon Peter Barjona.

As for the requested refutation, Peter himself refers to Jesus as the Rock, and the keys were given to all the Apostles.

I realize that the fact that Jesus was speaking of Faith in Himself, not about the fisherman from Galilee, may be hard for a Roman Catholic to accept, but it is the truth.


Sunday, August 26, 2007

File this under false prophecy plain stupidity

"Those who want him to die will be frustrated, because Fidel Castro will never die."

Hugo Chavez