Credo in Unum Deum

I Believe in One God

Faith Alone – feeling alone

Of course, no where does St. Paul state that we are justified by faith alone. Now, some might say that it can be inferred from many passages, just like we infer from many passages and the covenantal and cultural context that we ought to baptize our babies because they born into a believing, covenant family. The problem with that argument is that when we argue for paedo-baptism, we argue from the fact that children of covenant households were always considered as belonging to God. We argue from the fact that at the time the Bible was written, that was still the understanding. When households were baptized, it is inconceivable that the babies (if there were any there) were also baptized.
But the problem with sola fide pushers is this: they contend that Paul was castigating folks because they thought that works was needed without faith, or maybe with faith, and he was setting them straight and saying that faith alone justifies. The disconnect is in the fact that in the baptism argument, we appeal to the fact that the text doesn’t need to be clear about infants, because it would be assumed, being a part of the covenant consciousness of the people. Apparently, works righteousness was the main category in the consciousness of the people, according to the Lutheran/Reformed folks. This would call for an explicit rebuttal of works righteousness and an even clearer proclamation of sola fide. This also renders James statement, “not by faith alone”(delivered to a Jewish audience I believe) utterly ridiculous. Since the Jews had a problem with works righteousness, why is he telling them you are justified not by faith alone, but by works?

Maybe the Jews weren’t works righteousness freaks after all? Maybe they knew they were part of the covenant and were Gods people. Maybe the fact that they weren’t being faithful is what Paul was attacking… which makes sense of his Hab. 3 quote that “the just man shall live by his faithfulness…” — activity I think… Maybe the Jews were so utterly proud of their covenant identity in the fleshly marks (circumcision- another point of attack for Paul) that they had begun to trust in these works of the Law (circumcision being commanded by the Law) that they had ceased to be faithful to the covenant (work in faith, not works alone, not faith alone).

Thoughts?

February 15, 2008 Posted by | Catholicism, Controversial, Protestantism, Religion | 10 Comments

Abraham the Multi-Justified

Man that’s catchy!

So there seems to be a problem with the view that Justification is a once-for-all, one time, never to be repeated event.

You see, Abraham was justified about three times, according to Sacred Scriptures. Genesis 12, 15 and 22. I am not saying what that means right now, I am only pointing out that the view of Justification the Reformers innovated seems to be in trouble.

February 14, 2008 Posted by | Catholicism, Controversial, Protestantism, Religion | Leave a comment

So the Pope did change the prayer…

But I am inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt after going nuts with despair when I first heard about it.  “All he is going to do,” said I, “is make the Jews mad, make the Traditionalists mad, make the liberal/progressives mad, make the conservatives mad, and give the Evangelical Protestants more ammo to accuse the Pope of being a Ecumaniac!”  Well, come to think of it, I think my feelings were right, and Mr. Foxman (the epitome of reasoned, thoughtful commentary) with his “Christian” friends decried the Popes decision, many Catholics are all bent out of shape about this.

But let’s look at it a moment.  He changed the wording, but, logically, it still says the same thing.  The Jews need illumination… because they are already illumined??  No, because they are in… what… darkness.  In the first major liturgical act since the ridiculous prayers of the Novus Ordo Good Friday Prayers (Happy Friday I should say… I’m good, you’re good, hell, even the Jews are good!), the Pope has reiterated that the Jews are still in need of the Savior of all men, and someday, all Israel will be saved by the fullness of the Gentiles coming in.  I think this will bring a debate that has gone on in the clouds too long down to earth.  Is the Catholic Church the New Israel?  What does this mean?  This may precipitate a changing of the current NO Good Friday prayers.  But now I am dreaming…

February 6, 2008 Posted by | Catholicism, Liturgy, Religion | 1 Comment