In response to:

An Evangelical Pope?

Whitebeard Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 4:08 AM
The "rock" is not Peter. Yeshua used the word "petros" when referring to Simon Peter. It means "little movable pebble." He used the word "petra" to refer to Himself (or to Peter's confession). It means "large immovable boulder." Our faith is based on the solid Rock of Yeshua...not on a little human pebble or stone. During a discussion of the Democrat party, a pundit...after pointing out that God was voted down three times at their convention...might say: "This is the modern Democrat party." Of course, the word "is" in that sentence should not be taken literally. Instead, it means "represents." Likewise, Yeshua was using a common idiom when He said "take, eat; this is (i.e. represents) my body/blood."
Whitebeard Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 4:17 AM
The idiom Yeshua used regarded "eating" the words of a teacher...not eating the teacher. We have similar idioms. A sportscaster might say of a linebacker who tackled a quarterback for a loss: "He really ate him up, didn't he?"

While other Roman Catholic errors could be pointed out, I am not anti-Catholic. Instead, I am just a fallible man who makes errors, too, and who recognizes that the vast majority of Roman Catholics have professed faith in Yeshua and have kept His name, and faith in Him, alive down through the centuries. Good for them.
Stuart Koehl Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 7:43 AM
I will simply point out that every Apostolic Church tracing its roots to the first century AD holds to the same core beliefs concerning the Church and salvation as does the Catholic Church (which, inter alia, is a communion of 23 particular Churches, only one of which is "Roman". Churches not in communion with Rome--the Eastern Orthodox Churches, the Oriental Orthodox Churches, and the Church of the East-- which have fundamental disagreements with Rome regarding matters such as Papal infallibility and the immaculate conception of the Virgin Mary, agree with Rome on more fundamental matters such as the efficacy of the sacraments, the sacramental presence of Christ in the Eucharist, the intercession of the saints and of the Mother of God
Stuart Koehl Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 7:47 AM
the Apostolic Succession of bishops, the necessity of auricular confession, the use of liturgical worship with set prayers and hymns, the utility of fasting, the use of sacred images. . . .

The list goes on and on. The Church of the first century looked a lot more like those Apostolic Churches today than it did the myriad Evangelical denominations, whose lack of fidelity to the Tradition passed down by the Apostles is also the source of their theological and ethical chaos.
soliton2 Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 9:54 AM
Excellent response to the usual protestant arguements, Stuart. I might add that WB should read the Church Fathers and Justin Martyr. I would also add that WB reread John 6 .
Whitebeard Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 10:09 AM
Soliton: Good morning. I have no desire to argue with you about your faith. I don't know if what I wrote is a "usual protestant argument," but language is language. For example, the Greek word petra is feminine and could not be a reference to Peter for that reason, alone.

Secondly, John uses the "I am" metaphor 7 times: I Am...the bread of life, the light of the world, the door of the sheep, the good shepherd, the resurrection and life, the true and living way, the true vine. John did not mean that Yeshua, literally, was bread, light, a door, or a vine.
digdigby Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 10:19 AM
The Protestant version of Christian history is pure wishful thinking and fantasy and torturous word-parsing. Everything you say, Mr. Koehl, is EASILY verifiable.
Whitebeard Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 10:25 AM
dig: C'mon, every single word you just wrote has a meaning, is used in context, may have been meant literally, may have been used idiomatically, etc. To distinguish the difference between petra and petros is not "torgurous word parsing." It is, simply, to distinguish a difference in meaning between two words.
soliton2 Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 10:27 AM
Jesus did not speak Greek. His language was Aramaic. Kephas rather than petro.

Furthermore, the earliest Church recognized the true prescence--Justin Martyr, and Paul.

Of course JC used metaphor. And at times he didn't. John. ^ was one of those times he didn't. Or were people leaving and not able to understand "this is my body" just mistaken? Why wouldn't he correct them?
Whitebeard Wrote: Feb 17, 2013 10:36 AM
soliton: Yeshua spoke more than one language; nevertheless, we are talking about written language - John wrote in Greek and quoted Yeshua accurately, that is, he wrote in Greek, exactly, what Yeshua intended for us to understand.

Regarding your good questions, the answer is timing. Remember, He spoke in parables, at times, so that some would NOT understand Him (...at a particular time).
Stuart Koehl Wrote: Feb 18, 2013 10:30 AM
I have to point out that Jesus probably spoke in Aramaic, in which case the name assigned to Simon bar Jona would have been "Kephas"--as St. Paul calls him in his Epistles. The distinction between pebble and rock (petra and petros) is not present in Aramaic.

Which is all irrelevant, anyway: the consensus of the Fathers was Peter's confession of faith was the rock, and all those who share in that confession are part of the rock. And even those Churches which disagree with Rome on the definition and exercise of the primacy do concur with Rome on most of the important issues--whereas the Protestant "ecclesial communities" are not in accord at all with any of the ancient Churches.
Stuart Koehl Wrote: Feb 18, 2013 10:32 AM
But Paul also wrote in Greek, and referred to Peter as Kephas. And, as I said, this is a stupid, tangential issue which you are using to obscure the fact that Evangelical Protestantism has no historical legs. Whether you are Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox or a member of the Church of the East, you share a common understanding of Church that goes back to the Apostles, whereas Evangelicalism really goes back no farther than the beginning of the 20th century. Are you implying the Holy Spirit abandoned the Church for some 20 centuries?

The media, including some in the Christian media, throw around the word evangelical with little understanding of its proper definition. Most recently, the media has done this in referring to Pope Benedict XVI as the “Evangelical Pope.”

In an attempt to say he’s a missionary-minded Pope, or a proselytizing Pope, they impart a title that would probably make him most uncomfortable.

I have a deep respect for Pope Benedict. Respect for his impressive intellect. Respect for his strong stand on moral issues. Respect for his belief in the uniqueness of Jesus Christ for salvation. Respect for his levelheadedness in understanding other...