Tag Archives: Apologetics

List of teachings Protestants cannot agree upon due to Sola Scriptura

List of teachings Protestants cannot agree upon due to Sola Scriptura.

The following is a ‘open’ list of teachings (subject to further expansion) which Protestants cannot agree upon due to the doctrinal relativism caused by Sola Scriptura. Though many Protestants today would “solve” this problem by tossing a lot of these into the “non-essential” category, I believe the doctrinal issues I’ve mentioned have been clearly seen to cause division among Protestants:

  1. Once Saved Always Saved
  2. Universal versus Limited Atonement
  3. Infant Baptism
  4. Form of Baptism (e.g. full immersion vs pouring)
  5. Whether Baptism is necessary in ordinary circumstances
  6. Whether the Lord’s Supper is purely symbolic or some sort of ‘real’ presence
  7. Divorce and Remarriage
  8. Whether icons/pictures of Christ are allowed
  9. Which doctrines are perspicuous/essential
  10. Whether Charismatic Gifts of the Spirit have ceased
  11. Whether instruments are allowed in church
  12. Female ordination
  13. The “biblical” form of church government
  14. Sunday versus any day worship / Whether the Sabbath is still in force in some sense.
  15. House churches versus dedicated congregational churches
  16. Dispensationalism
  17. Rapture/Tribulation
  18. Imputed Active Obedience
  19. Whether traditional categories like Person/Nature are true/valid
  20. Mary being “Mother of God”
  21. Mary’s Perpetual Virginity
  22. Whether Inspiration of Scripture is plenary or limited to faith and morals
  23. Whether one can/should pray to the Holy Spirit
  24. Whether Sola Scriptura applied during the time of Christ and the Apostles
  25. How to define/understand Sola Scriptura, especially as it relates to Creeds and Councils
  26. Should Christians engage in politics, civil service, etc. 
  27. Whether Christians should pray the Our Father
  28. Whether prayer should be only spontaneous
  29. Whether keeping the Commandments is necessary for salvation
  30. Whether illness, suffering, poverty, etc, are due to sin or lack of faith
  31. Whether Free Will and Double Predestination are true or not

Feel free to mention some other examples in the comment box!

As a Catholic, it is easy for me to treat this list as a “checklist” of sorts. All I have to do is go down each point and reference the matter in the Catechism. The Catechism is chock full of Bible citations, references to the Church Fathers and council documents, etc. wherein I can read the reasons behind why the Church teaches what it does on these matters.

That said, I do not post this here to belittle but instead to foster conversation and debate. Therefore, I am proposing that over the course of the next several weeks interested parties should speak touch on these matters in a civil and charitable fashion. Best of all, those who decide to meet in person can have a conversation on a set topic and thus prepare to speak on and teach on their theological opinions and understanding on the item of the week.

List of teachings Protestants cannot agree upon due to Sola Scriptura

List of teachings Protestants cannot agree upon due to Sola Scriptura.

The following is a ‘open’ list of teachings (subject to further expansion) which Protestants cannot agree upon due to the doctrinal relativism caused by Sola Scriptura. Though many Protestants today would “solve” this problem by tossing a lot of these into the “non-essential” category, I believe the doctrinal issues I’ve mentioned have been clearly seen to cause division among Protestants:

  1. Once Saved Always Saved
  2. Universal versus Limited Atonement
  3. Infant Baptism
  4. Form of Baptism (e.g. full immersion vs pouring)
  5. Whether Baptism is necessary in ordinary circumstances
  6. Whether the Lord’s Supper is purely symbolic or some sort of ‘real’ presence
  7. Divorce and Remarriage
  8. Whether icons/pictures of Christ are allowed
  9. Which doctrines are perspicuous/essential
  10. Whether Charismatic Gifts of the Spirit have ceased
  11. Whether instruments are allowed in church
  12. Female ordination
  13. The “biblical” form of church government
  14. Sunday versus any day worship / Whether the Sabbath is still in force in some sense.
  15. House churches versus dedicated congregational churches
  16. Dispensationalism
  17. Rapture/Tribulation
  18. Imputed Active Obedience
  19. Whether traditional categories like Person/Nature are true/valid
  20. Mary being “Mother of God”
  21. Mary’s Perpetual Virginity
  22. Whether Inspiration of Scripture is plenary or limited to faith and morals
  23. Whether one can/should pray to the Holy Spirit
  24. Whether Sola Scriptura applied during the time of Christ and the Apostles
  25. How to define/understand Sola Scriptura, especially as it relates to Creeds and Councils
  26. Should Christians engage in politics, civil service, etc. 
  27. Whether Christians should pray the Our Father
  28. Whether prayer should be only spontaneous
  29. Whether keeping the Commandments is necessary for salvation
  30. Whether illness, suffering, poverty, etc, are due to sin or lack of faith
  31. Whether Free Will and Double Predestination are true or not

Feel free to mention some other examples in the comment box!

As a Catholic, it is easy for me to treat this list as a “checklist” of sorts. All I have to do is go down each point and reference the matter in the Catechism. The Catechism is chock full of Bible citations, references to the Church Fathers and council documents, etc. wherein I can read the reasons behind why the Church teaches what it does on these matters.

That said, I do not post this here to belittle but instead to foster conversation and debate. Therefore, I am proposing that over the course of the next several weeks interested parties should speak touch on these matters in a civil and charitable fashion. Best of all, those who decide to meet in person can have a conversation on a set topic and thus prepare to speak on and teach on their theological opinions and understanding on the item of the week.

Dr. Ed Peters knows canon law. Whoopi Goldberg knows cliches.

H/T to Insight Scoop and CatholicVote.org on this.

What you are about to witness in this clip are people commenting on a subject that they a) do not know anything or much about and b) do not take seriously.

Those who know and understand that the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Blessed Lord, Jesus Christ, is really and truly present under the accidents of bread and wine are more than likely going to disagree with Dr. Peters. For the position expressed by Dr. Ed Peters is one that is clearly mentioned in Scripture:

Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.

— 1 Corinthians 11:27-29

 

Vodpod videos no longer available.

1st collector for Dr. Ed Peters knows canon law. Whoopi Goldberg …
Follow my videos on vodpod

This is the point of the issue. Cuomo and any other person who “eats and drinks…in an unworthy manner” does so at their own peril. Not because some are sinners and other are not but because partaking in this sacrilegious act demonstrates that the so-called communicant is not in full communion with the Church and her Bridegroom Jesus Christ.

Understanding Why Baptism is Necessary for Salvation: Responding to Objections of Catholic Dogma and John 3:5

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John the Baptist baptizing Christ by Francesco Trevisani, 1723. Image via Wikipedia

Here is the second part of an ongoing discussion between myself and a Protestant friend of mine. as previously mentioned, we often met on Saturdays to discuss our various theological differences in charity and over a delicious cheeseburger from any one of our local Five Guys (we call it Theology Over a Bun).

In this post, my friend continues to argue against the long-held understating of Christian baptism and the necessity thereof. The passage that my friend highlights below is surely one of the main verses used by the Church in affirming this element of Christian dogma. Let us examine my friend’s post and argument against the necessity of baptism and why:

Baptismal Regeneration – John 3:5

Catholics interpret “born of water” in John 3:5

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as baptism and therefore conclude baptism is necessary for salvation. Here’s the passage:

Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

Born of water has been taken as 1) the Spirit or cleansing work of the Spirit, 2) natural birth or 3) baptism. For now let’s assume it means baptism and see how it plays out.

Would first century Jews have instantly recognized ‘born of water’ as meaning baptism? Certainly Nicodemus was aware of baptism. John the Baptist baptized people for repentance. Some evidence suggests Jews baptized proselytes and even called it birth.

“Everyone agreed that a Gentile became a Jew through proselyte baptism. The big discussion in Nicodemus’ day was the degree of cleanliness. Was he immediately clean as “a little child just born” (Yeb. 22a; 48b; 97b*) and a “child of one day” (Mass. Ger. c. 2*)” (link)

Not only did John baptize, but Christ also baptized via His disciples, just as John the Baptist had predicted He would.

John 1:33

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I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’

John 4:1-2

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Therefore, when the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John (though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His disciples)

So if Nicodemus understood ‘born of water’ as baptism, he would have been thinking of John’s baptism of repentance. And the Jewish leadership had personally rejected John and his baptism; though they were unwilling advertise their rejection.

Luke 7:30

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But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the will of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.

Matthew 21:24-26

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But Jesus answered and said to them, “I also will ask you one thing, which if you tell Me, I likewise will tell you by what authority I do these things: The baptism of John—where was it from? From heaven or from men?” And they reasoned among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From men,’ we fear the multitude, for all count John as a prophet.”

But of course John’s baptism is one of repentance and Christian Baptism looks on Christ’s death burial and resurrection. So when Paul found those who were baptized into John’s baptism, he baptized them again in Christ’s name.

Acts 19:1-5

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And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?” So they said, “Into John’s baptism.” Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.” When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

Christian baptism had not been established at the time Christ and Nicodemus spoke. Did Christ forget this when berating Nicodemus for not knowing what He was talking about? (John 3:9-10

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) So clearly Nicodemus would have been thinking about John’s baptism; the baptism he probably personally rejected. Christian baptism simply didn’t exist yet.

So it’s anachronistic to view John 3:5

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as teaching Christian baptism is necessary for salvation, since Christ established it after the resurrection. (Matthew 28:19

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). And no one teaches John’s baptism is or was necessary for salvation, but of course repentance itself is necessary for salvation. So if we take ‘born of water’ as baptism, the most likely conclusion would be that baptism is used for what it represented – repentance.

via Arminian Chronicles: Baptismal Regeneration – John 3:5.


Many faithful Catholics will already see the erroneous understanding of John 3:5 and the Church’s teaching on the necessity of baptism. First, let us turn to Scripture and read John 3:5 in its immediate context:

Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do, unless God is with him.” Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born anew.’ The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit.”

Nicodemus said to him, “How can this be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand this? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen; but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” (John (RSV) 3:1-15)

When reading John 3:5 in the more immediate context of the passage it becomes clear that Nicodemus came to Jesus at night to edify himself as he could be considered a “closet” Christian. Jesus proceeds to move the conversation towards the requirements of salvation by building on Nicodemus’ statement concerning Christ’s relationship to what the Jews understanding of Whom God is. In that response Christ lays out the base requirement for entry into heaven. Being “born anew” cannot be disputed as it comes straight off the lips of Our Blessed Lord.

Nicodemus’ reaction to that statement is even more telling; he is at a loss of understanding as to how a man can be reborn. This is a foreign, pagan concept to Jews (Christian’s and Muslims alike) because from the beginning God revealed that there is no such thing as reincarnation. But despite being an educated, respected Pharisee, Nicodemus still cannot fathom the spiritual implication of Jesus’ message – he remains caught up in the “things of the flesh” (Romans 8:5).

Thus, Jesus’ response to Nicodemus on the issue of physical rebirth clarifies the matter and form of this salvific rebirth we call baptism. Thus it is not that Catholics believe that being “born (or reborn) of water” is baptism but rather it is the grace bestowed upon us by God through the matter of water in which the spirit (soul) is reborn that makes up Christian baptism. It is by the grace of God that baptism performed in the proper manner and with the proper intent imbues the recipient with salvific grace that remains with the person until they choose to reject said grace by the commission/omission of personal sin. When a person is validly baptised in Christ, they are reborn a new creature putting on “the new nature, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator” (Colossians (RSV) 3:10).

The disappointment that Christ expressing in Nicodemus for not understanding this as a “teacher of Israel” is rooted in the fact that this concept is not new. It was prefigured in the Old Testament and even natural law:

  • “The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters.” (Genesis (RSV) 1:2)
  • “I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea…” (1 Corinthians (RSV) 10:1-2)
  • “…when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, during the building of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were saved through water. Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you…” (1 Peter (RSV) 3:20-21)
  • If water springing up from the earth symbolizes life, the water of the sea is a symbol of death and so can represent the mystery of the cross. By this symbolism Baptism signifies communion with Christ’s death.” (CCC 1220)

Again, what is evidenced by my Protestant friend is a misunderstanding of Catholic teaching. The focus of his passage and the his interpretation thereof is on the wrong subject. Water is the matter used to baptize a person; doing so “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew (RSV) 28:19) is form; and the rebirth/recreation of the person’s soul – now in Christ – is the result.

Concerning the when of Christian baptism, again, my friend is showing a misunderstanding. While it is obvious to note that the “form” used for baptism is not explicitly provided in Scripture other than Matthew 28:19, we must take note that in order to be baptized into “His death” (Romans 6:3), we must seek when that death occurred. It is Jesus’ death on the Cross that is the saving sacrificial act for mankind. It is His resurrection that restores our place in Heaven. On this subject I turn to St. Augustine who, in reference to John 19:34,[1] wrote:

“Then came the soldiers, and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who was, crucified with Him. But when they came to Jesus, and saw that He was dead already, they brake not His legs: but one of the soldiers with a spear laid open His side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.” A suggestive word was made use of by the evangelist, in not saying pierced, or wounded His side, or anything else, but “opened;” that thereby, in a sense, the gate of life might be thrown open, from whence have flowed forth the sacraments of the Church, without which there is no entrance to the life which is the true life. That blood was shed for the remission of sins; that water it is that makes up the health-giving cup, and supplies at once the layer of baptism and water for drinking. This was announced beforehand, when Noah was commanded to make a door in the side of the ark (Genesis 6:16), whereby the animals might enter which were not destined to perish in the flood, and by which the Church was prefigured. Because of this, the first woman was formed from the side of the man when asleep (Genesis 2:22), and was called Life, and the mother of all living (Genesis 3:20). Truly it pointed to a great good, prior to the great evil of the transgression (in the guise of one thus lying asleep). This second Adam bowed His head and fell asleep on the cross, that a spouse might be formed for Him from that which flowed from the sleeper’s side. O death, whereby the dead are raised anew to life! What can be purer than such blood? What more health-giving than such a wound? (Augustin on John 120:2)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church says the following:

In his Passover Christ opened to all men the fountain of Baptism. He had already spoken of his Passion, which he was about to suffer in Jerusalem, as a “Baptism” with which he had to be baptized (Mark 10:38, Luke 12:50). The blood and water that flowed from the pierced side of the crucified Jesus are types of Baptism and the Eucharist, the sacraments of new life (John 19:34, 1 John 5:6-8). From then on, it is possible “to be born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5) in order to enter the Kingdom of God. See where you are baptized, see where Baptism comes from, if not from the cross of Christ, from his death. There is the whole mystery: he died for you. In him you are redeemed, in him you are saved.[2] (1997 Catechism of the Catholic Church 1225)

This is the proper understanding of baptism and why it is necessary and salvific.

If interested, please take the time to listen to Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s lesson on Baptism as linked from my Box.net share (—–> look at the right-hand column).


[1] “…sed unus militum lancea latus eius aperuit, et continuo exivit sanguis et aqua.” (John (NV) 19:34)

[2] St. Ambrose, De sacr. 2, 2, 6: PL 16, 444; Jn 3,5

Dr. Ed Peters knows canon law. Whoopi Goldberg knows cliches.

H/T to Insight Scoop and CatholicVote.org on this.

What you are about to witness in this clip are people commenting on a subject that they a) do not know anything or much about and b) do not take seriously.

Those who know and understand that the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Blessed Lord, Jesus Christ, is really and truly present under the accidents of bread and wine are more than likely going to disagree with Dr. Peters. For the position expressed by Dr. Ed Peters is one that is clearly mentioned in Scripture:

Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.

— 1 Corinthians 11:27-29

Vodpod videos no longer available.

1st collector for Dr. Ed Peters knows canon law. Whoopi Goldberg …
Follow my videos on vodpod

This is the point of the issue. Cuomo and any other person who “eats and drinks…in an unworthy manner” does so at their own peril. Not because some are sinners and other are not but because partaking in this sacrilegious act demonstrates that the so-called communicant is not in full communion with the Church and her Bridegroom Jesus Christ.

Understanding Why Baptism is Necessary for Salvation: Responding to Objections of Catholic Dogma and John 3:5

John the Baptist baptizing Christ

Here is the second part of an ongoing discussion between myself and a Protestant friend of mine. as previously mentioned, we often met on Saturdays to discuss our various theological differences in charity and over a delicious cheeseburger from any one of our local Five Guys (we call it Theology Over a Bun).

In this post, my friend continues to argue against the long-held understating of Christian baptism and the necessity thereof. The passage that my friend highlights below is surely one of the main verses used by the Church in affirming this element of Christian dogma. Let us examine my friend’s post and argument against the necessity of baptism and why:

Baptismal Regeneration – John 3:5

Catholics interpret “born of water” in John 3:5 as baptism and therefore conclude baptism is necessary for salvation. Here’s the passage:

Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

Born of water has been taken as 1) the Spirit or cleansing work of the Spirit, 2) natural birth or 3) baptism. For now let’s assume it means baptism and see how it plays out.

Would first century Jews have instantly recognized ‘born of water’ as meaning baptism? Certainly Nicodemus was aware of baptism. John the Baptist baptized people for repentance. Some evidence suggests Jews baptized proselytes and even called it birth.

“Everyone agreed that a Gentile became a Jew through proselyte baptism. The big discussion in Nicodemus’ day was the degree of cleanliness. Was he immediately clean as “a little child just born” (Yeb. 22a; 48b; 97b*) and a “child of one day” (Mass. Ger. c. 2*)” (link)

Not only did John baptize, but Christ also baptized via His disciples, just as John the Baptist had predicted He would.

John 1:33 I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’

John 4:1-2Therefore, when the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John (though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His disciples)

So if Nicodemus understood ‘born of water’ as baptism, he would have been thinking of John’s baptism of repentance. And the Jewish leadership had personally rejected John and his baptism; though they were unwilling advertise their rejection.

Luke 7:30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the will of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.

Matthew 21:24-26 But Jesus answered and said to them, “I also will ask you one thing, which if you tell Me, I likewise will tell you by what authority I do these things: The baptism of John—where was it from? From heaven or from men?” And they reasoned among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From men,’ we fear the multitude, for all count John as a prophet.”

But of course John’s baptism is one of repentance and Christian Baptism looks on Christ’s death burial and resurrection. So when Paul found those who were baptized into John’s baptism, he baptized them again in Christ’s name.

Acts 19:1-5 And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?” So they said, “Into John’s baptism.” Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.” When they
heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

Christian baptism had not been established at the time Christ and Nicodemus spoke. Did Christ forget this when berating Nicodemus for not knowing what He was talking about? (John 3:9-10) So clearly Nicodemus would have been thinking about John’s baptism; the baptism he probably personally rejected. Christian baptism simply didn’t exist yet.

So it’s anachronistic to view John 3:5 as teaching Christian baptism is necessary for salvation, since Christ established it after the resurrection. (Matthew 28:19). And no one teaches John’s baptism is or was necessary for salvation, but of course repentance itself is necessary for salvation. So if we take ‘born of water’ as baptism, the most likely conclusion would be that baptism is used for what it represented – repentance.

via Arminian Chronicles: Baptismal Regeneration – John 3:5.


Many faithful Catholics will already see the erroneous understanding of John 3:5 and the Church’s teaching on the necessity of baptism. First, let us turn to Scripture and read John 3:5 in its immediate context:

Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do, unless God is with him.” Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born anew.’ The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit.”

Nicodemus said to him, “How can this be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand this? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen; but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” (John (RSV) 3:1-15)

When reading John 3:5 in the more immediate context of the passage it becomes clear that Nicodemus came to Jesus at night to edify himself as he could be considered a “closet” Christian. Jesus proceeds to move the conversation towards the requirements of salvation by building on Nicodemus’ statement concerning Christ’s relationship to what the Jews understanding of Whom God is. In that response Christ lays out the base requirement for entry into heaven. Being “born anew” cannot be disputed as it comes straight off the lips of Our Blessed Lord.

Nicodemus’ reaction to that statement is even more telling; he is at a loss of understanding as to how a man can be reborn. This is a foreign, pagan concept to Jews (Christian’s and Muslims alike) because from the beginning God revealed that there is no such thing as reincarnation. But despite being an educated, respected Pharisee, Nicodemus still cannot fathom the spiritual implication of Jesus’ message – he remains caught up in the “things of the flesh” (Romans 8:5).

Thus, Jesus’ response to Nicodemus on the issue of physical rebirth clarifies the matter and form of this salvific rebirth we call baptism. Thus it is not that Catholics believe that being “born (or reborn) of water” is baptism but rather it is the grace bestowed upon us by God through the matter of water in which the spirit (soul) is reborn that makes up Christian baptism. It is by the grace of God that baptism performed in the proper manner and with the proper intent imbues the recipient with salvific grace that remains with the person until they choose to reject said grace by the commission/omission of personal sin. When a person is validly baptised in Christ, they are reborn a new creature putting on “the new nature, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator” (Colossians (RSV) 3:10).

The disappointment that Christ expressing in Nicodemus for not understanding this as a “teacher of Israel” is rooted in the fact that this concept is not new. It was prefigured in the Old Testament and even natural law:

  • “The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters.” (Genesis (RSV) 1:2)
  • “I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea…” (1 Corinthians (RSV) 10:1-2)
  • “…when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, during the building of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were saved through water. Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you…” (1 Peter (RSV) 3:20-21)
  • If water springing up from the earth symbolizes life, the water of the sea is a symbol of death and so can represent the mystery of the cross. By this symbolism Baptism signifies communion with Christ’s death.” (CCC 1220)

Again, what is evidenced by my Protestant friend is a misunderstanding of Catholic teaching. The focus of his passage and the his interpretation thereof is on the wrong subject. Water is the matter used to baptize a person; doing so “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew (RSV) 28:19) is form; and the rebirth/recreation of the person’s soul – now in Christ – is the result.

Concerning the when of Christian baptism, again, my friend is showing a misunderstanding. While it is obvious to note that the “form” used for baptism is not explicitly provided in Scripture other than Matthew 28:19, we must take note that in order to be baptized into “His death” (Romans 6:3), we must seek when that death occurred. It is Jesus’ death on the Cross that is the saving sacrificial act for mankind. It is His resurrection that restores our place in Heaven. On this
subject I turn to St. Augustine who, in reference to John 19:34,[1] wrote:

“Then came the soldiers, and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who was, crucified with Him. But when they came to Jesus, and saw that He was dead already, they brake not His legs: but one of the soldiers with a spear laid open His side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.” A suggestive word was made use of by the evangelist, in not saying pierced, or wounded His side, or anything else, but “opened;” that thereby, in a sense, the gate of life might be thrown open, from whence have flowed forth the sacraments of the Church, without which there is no entrance to the life which is the true life. That blood was shed for the remission of sins; that water it is that makes up the health-giving cup, and supplies at once the layer of baptism and water for drinking. This was announced beforehand, when Noah was commanded to make a door in the side of the ark (Genesis 6:16), whereby the animals might enter which were not destined to perish in the flood, and by which the Church was prefigured. Because of this, the first woman was formed from the side of the man when asleep (Genesis 2:22), and was called Life, and the mother of all living (Genesis 3:20). Truly it pointed to a great good, prior to the great evil of the transgression (in the guise of one thus lying asleep). This second Adam bowed His head and fell asleep on the cross, that a spouse might be formed for Him from that which flowed from the sleeper’s side. O death, whereby the dead are raised anew to life! What can be purer than such blood? What more health-giving than such a wound? (Augustin on John 120:2)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church says the following:

In his Passover Christ opened to all men the fountain of Baptism. He had already spoken of his Passion, which he was about to suffer in Jerusalem, as a “Baptism” with which he had to be baptized (Mark 10:38, Luke 12:50). The blood and water that flowed from the pierced side of the crucified Jesus are types of Baptism and the Eucharist, the sacraments of new life (John 19:34, 1 John 5:6-8). From then on, it is possible “to be born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5) in order to enter the Kingdom of God. See where you are baptized, see where Baptism comes from, if not from the cross of Christ, from his death. There is the whole mystery: he died for you. In him you are redeemed, in him you are saved.[2] (1997 Catechism of the Catholic Church 1225)

This is the proper understanding of baptism and why it is necessary and salvific.

If interested, please take the time to listen to Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s lesson on Baptism as linked from my Box.net share (——-> look at the right-hand column).


[1] “…sed unus militum lancea latus eius aperuit, et continuo exivit sanguis et aqua.” (John (NV) 19:34)

[2] St. Ambrose, De sacr. 2, 2, 6: PL 16, 444; Jn 3,5

Cardinal Rigali places 3 priests on leave, reopens abuse investigations

Media_httpuploadwikim_xhpfb

Justin Cardinal Rigali. Image via Wikipedia.

After a Philadelphia grand jury report asserted that as many as 37 priests who have committed abuse remain in active ministry, Cardinal Justin Rigali has announced that he is placing three priests on administrative leave. The cardinal has also hired a former assistant district attorney to reexamine the cases of all accused priests who are in active ministry. “The cardinal’s strong words and recent efforts are the correct steps at this time,” District Attorney Seth Williams said.

Source(s): these links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

  • Cardinal Rigali announces further actions in response to grand jury report (Archdiocese of Philadelphia)
  • Philadelphia Catholic Diocese to re-open sex abuse cases (Reuters)
  • via Catholic Culture : Latest Headlines : Cardinal Rigali places 3 priests on leave, reopens abuse investigations.

    It remains a sad fact that humans are sinners and that men who become validly ordained priests within the One True Church of Christ are not immune to this. However, it is interesting to note another fact – a child is far more likely to be abused by a public school official that by Catholic clergy. This fact even applies when one focuses on abuse that occurs within the religious community alone where abuse is far more likely to be perpetrated by Jewish and Protestant clergy than Catholic clergy.

    Just keep these fact in mind before making any judgements against Holy Mother Church and the priests in her service.

    Find out more on these stats by reading the study on this matter conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice (part of the City University of New York).

    Cardinal Rigali places 3 priests on leave, reopens abuse investigations

    Justin Cardinal Rigali

    After a Philadelphia grand jury report asserted that as many as 37 priests who have committed abuse remain in active ministry, Cardinal Justin Rigali has announced that he is placing three priests on administrative leave. The cardinal has also hired a former assistant district attorney to reexamine the cases of all accused priests who are in active ministry. “The cardinal’s strong words and recent efforts are the correct steps at this time,” District Attorney Seth Williams said.

    Source(s): these links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

    via Catholic Culture : Latest Headlines : Cardinal Rigali places 3 priests on leave, reopens abuse investigations.

    It remains a sad fact that humans are sinners and that men who become validly ordained priests within the One True Church of Christ are not immune to this. However, it is interesting to note another fact – a child is far more likely to be abused by a public school official that by Catholic clergy. This fact even applies when one focuses on abuse that occurs within the religious community alone where abuse is far more likely to be perpetrated by Jewish and Protestant clergy than Catholic clergy.

    Just keep these fact in mind before making any judgements against Holy Mother Church and the priests in her service.

    Find out more on these stats by reading the study on this matter conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice (part of the City University of New York).

    Optional Memorial of the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites

    Media_httpuploadwikim_jupch

    The Seven Holy Founders of the Servite Order receiving their habit from Our Lady, Italian painting, c. 1700. Image via Wikipedia.

    Today the liturgy honors seven noble Florentines who in the thirteenth century, at a time when Florence and all Italy was torn by civil strife, banded together to found, not far from Florence on Monte Senario, the Order of Servites of the Blessed Virgin Mary, especially dedicated to penance and meditation on the sorrows of our Lady in the passion of our Savior. This order was approved by the Holy See in 1304. One of the seven, Alexis Falconieri, died on this date in 1310. According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite this feast is celebrated on February 12.

    I first became acquainted with the Servite Order when I conducted a two-week compliance review of my agency’s field office in Portland. The two-week trip sandwiched Divine Mercy Sunday and of course, I needed to find a place to go to Sunday Mass. Well, God be praised because as I was thinking of a second place to Adore Christ in the Most Blessed Sacrament, I came across information concerning “the Grotto” and the fact that they would be celebrating Mass for Divine Mercy Sunday at noon with Adoration to follow. Unsurprisingly, I found this out while Adoring Christ at Immaculate Heart of Mary parish (home parish of apologist and speaker Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers).

    Please enjoy the pictures below and I apologize if they are not as good as they should have been but I forgot my camera when I departed for this trip so I was using my BlackBerry Curve 8330m. Oh, and please do not forget to read the information below on the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites and the Scripture Readings for today.

    A tour of the National Sanctuary of Our Sorrowful Mother (The Grotto) in Portland, Oregon.
    Vodpod videos no longer available.

    1st collector for Portland Catholic Follow my videos on vodpod


    Seven Founders of the Orders of Servites

    These seven men were the founders of the Servite Order, a community instituted for the special purpose of cultivating the spirit of penance and contemplating the passion of Christ and Mary’s Seven Sorrows. Due to the spirit of humility cherished by the members of the Order, their accomplishments are not too widely known. But in the field of home missions great things are to their credit, and certainly they have benefited millions by arousing devotion to the Mother of Sorrows.

    The Breviary tells us that in the midst of the party strife during the thirteenth century, God called seven men from the nobility of Florence. In the year 1233 they met and prayed together most fervently. The Blessed Mother appeared to each of them individually and urged them to begin a more perfect life. Disregarding birth and wealth, in sackcloth under shabby and well-worn clothing they withdrew to a small building in the country. It was September 8, selected so that they might begin to live a more holy life on the very day when the Mother of God began to live her holy life.

    Soon after, when the seven were begging alms from door to door in the streets of Florence, they suddenly heard children’s voices calling to them, “Servants of holy Mary.” Among these children was St. Philip Benizi, then just five months old. Hereafter they were known by this name, first heard from the lips of children. In the course of time they retired into solitude on Monte Senario and gave themselves wholly to contemplation and penance. Leo XIII canonized the Holy Founders and introduced today’s feast in 1888.

    Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

    Things to Do:

  • With the aid of the Gospels, meditate on the Seven Sorrows of Mary: the prophecy of Simeon; the flight into Egypt; the loss of the Child Jesus in the temple; the meeting of Jesus and Mary on the Way of the Cross; the Crucifixion; the taking down of the Body of Jesus from the Cross; the burial of Jesus.
  • Learn more about the Order of Servites at Patron Saints Index and EWTN.
  • via Catholic Culture : Liturgical Year


    Daily Scripture Readings

    First Reading: Gn 9:1-13

    God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them:

    “Be fertile and multiply and fill the earth. Dread fear of you shall come upon all the animals of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon all the creatures that move about on the ground and all the fishes of the sea; into your power they are delivered. Every creature that is alive shall be yours to eat; I give them all to you as I did the green plants. Only flesh with its lifeblood still in it you shall not eat. For your own lifeblood, too, I will demand an accounting: from every animal I will demand it, and from one man in regard to his fellow man I will demand an accounting for human life. If anyone sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; For in the image of God has man been made. Be fertile, then, and multiply; abound on earth and subdue it.”

    God said to Noah and to his sons with him:

    “See, I am now establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you: all the birds, and the various tame and wild animals that were with you and came out of the ark. I will establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all bodily creatures be destroyed by the waters of a flood; there shall not be another flood to devastate the earth.”

    God added:

    “This is the sign that I am giving for all ages to come, of the covenant between me and you and every living creature with you: I set my bow in the clouds to serve as a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.”

    Responsorial Psalm: Ps 102:16-18, 19-21, 29 and 22-23

    R. (20b) From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    The nations shall revere your name, O LORD,
    and all the kings of the earth your glory,
    When the LORD has rebuilt Zion
    and appeared in his glory;
    When he has regarded the prayer of the destitute,
    and not despised their prayer.

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    Let this be written for the generation to come,
    and let his future creatures praise the LORD:
    “The LORD looked down from his holy height,
    from heaven he beheld the earth,
    To hear the groaning of the prisoners,
    to release those doomed to die.”

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    The children of your servants shall abide,
    and their posterity shall continue in your presence,
    That the name of the LORD may be declared in Zion,
    and his praise, in Jerusalem,
    When the peoples gather together,
    and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    Gospel: Mk 8:27-33

    Jesus and his disciples set out for the villages of Caesarea Philippi. Along the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others one of the prophets.” And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said to him in reply, “You are the Christ.” Then he warned them not to tell anyone about him.

    He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and rise after three days. He spoke this openly. Then Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. At this he turned around and, looking at his disciples, rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”

    via USCCB | NAB – February 17, 2011.

    Just in case some do not see the parallel, Matthew recounts this event (in a little more detail) in Chapter 16 of his Gospel:

    Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.

    From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men.” (Matthew (RSV) 16:13-23)

    This passage from Matthew contains two key verses that show that Peter is made by Jesus the “Chief of the Apostles” otherwise known today as the pope (Mt 16:18), the bishop who has primacy over all bishops and is the visible head of the Christ’s Church on earth and whose office is protected by God, the holy Spirit from teaching error as is the Church herself. The next verse, 19, we find the fulfillment of a prophetic verse in Isaiah 22:22, “And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David; he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.”

    Some Protestants have used the second part of the two passages quoted above to show that Jesus’ rebuke of Peter demonstrates that he was more of Satan than of Christ. However, this is not the case as Mark’s account clarifies – Peter is not thinking of Christ’s mission as that of spiritual redemption but more in line with what many Jews then, and now, wrongly perceived the Messiah to be – a political liberator.

    Optional Memorial of the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites

    The Seven Holy Founders of the Servite Order r...

    Today the liturgy honors seven noble Florentines who in the thirteenth century, at a time when Florence and all Italy was torn by civil strife, banded together to found, not far from Florence on Monte Senario, the Order of Servites of the Blessed Virgin Mary, especially dedicated to penance and meditation on the sorrows of our Lady in the passion of our Savior. This order was approved by the Holy See in 1304. One of the seven, Alexis Falconieri, died on this date in 1310. According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite this feast is celebrated on February 12.

    I first became acquainted with the Servite Order when I conducted a two-week compliance review of my agency’s field office in Portland. The two-week trip sandwiched Divine Mercy Sunday and of course, I needed to find a place to go to Sunday Mass. Well, God be praised because as I was thinking of a second place to Adore Christ in the Most Blessed Sacrament, I came across information concerning “the Grotto” and the fact that they would be celebrating Mass for Divine Mercy Sunday at noon with Adoration to follow. Unsurprisingly, I found this out while Adoring Christ at Immaculate Heart of Mary parish (home parish of apologist and speaker Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers).

    Please enjoy the pictures below and I apologize if they are not as good as they should have been but I forgot my camera when I departed for this trip so I was using my BlackBerry Curve 8330m. Oh, and please do not forget to read the information below on the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites and the Scripture Readings for today.

    A tour of the National Sanctuary of Our Sorrowful Mother (The Grotto) in Portland, Oregon.
    Vodpod videos no longer available.

    1st collector for Portland Catholic Follow my videos on vodpod


    Seven Founders of the Orders of Servites

    These seven men were the founders of the Servite Order, a community instituted for the special purpose of cultivating the spirit of penance and contemplating the passion of Christ and Mary’s Seven Sorrows. Due to the spirit of humility cherished by the members of the Order, their accomplishments are not too widely known. But in the field of home missions great things are to their credit, and certainly they have benefited millions by arousing devotion to the Mother of Sorrows.

    The Breviary tells us that in the midst of the party strife during the thirteenth century, God called seven men from the nobility of Florence. In the year 1233 they met and prayed together most fervently. The Blessed Mother appeared to each of them individually and urged them to begin a more perfect life. Disregarding birth and wealth, in sackcloth under shabby and well-worn clothing they withdrew to a small building in the country. It was September 8, selected so that they might begin to live a more holy life on the very day when the Mother of God began to live her holy life.

    Soon after, when the seven were begging alms from door to door in the streets of Florence, they suddenly heard children’s voices calling to them, “Servants of holy Mary.” Among these children was St. Philip Benizi, then just five months old. Hereafter they were known by this name, first heard from the lips of children. In the course of time they retired into solitude on Monte Senario and gave themselves wholly to contemplation and penance. Leo XIII canonized the Holy Founders and introduced today’s feast in 1888.

    Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

    Things to Do:

    • With the aid of the Gospels, meditate on the Seven Sorrows of Mary: the prophecy of Simeon; the flight into Egypt; the loss of the Child Jesus in the temple; the meeting of Jesus and Mary on the Way of the Cross; the Crucifixion; the taking down of the Body of Jesus from the Cross; the burial of Jesus.
    • Learn more about the Order of Servites at Patron Saints Index and EWTN.

    via Catholic Culture : Liturgical Year


    Daily Scripture Readings

    First Reading: Gn 9:1-13

    God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them:

    “Be fertile and multiply and fill the earth. Dread fear of you shall come upon all the animals of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon all the creatures that move about on the ground and all the fishes of the sea; into your power they are delivered. Every creature that is alive shall be yours to eat; I give them all to you as I did the green plants. Only flesh with its lifeblood still in it you shall not eat. For your own lifeblood, too, I will demand an accounting: from every animal I will demand it, and from one man in regard to his fellow man I will demand an accounting for human life. If anyone sheds the
    blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; For in the image of God has man been made. Be fertile, then, and multiply; abound on earth and subdue it.”

    God said to Noah and to his sons with him:

    “See, I am now establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you: all the birds, and the various tame and wild animals that were with you and came out of the ark. I will establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all bodily creatures be destroyed by the waters of a flood; there shall not be another flood to devastate the earth.”

    God added:

    “This is the sign that I am giving for all ages to come, of the covenant between me and you and every living creature with you: I set my bow in the clouds to serve as a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.”

    Responsorial Psalm: Ps 102:16-18, 19-21, 29 and 22-23

    R. (20b) From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    The nations shall revere your name, O LORD,
    and all the kings of the earth your glory,
    When the LORD has rebuilt Zion
    and appeared in his glory;
    When he has regarded the prayer of the destitute,
    and not despised their prayer.

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    Let this be written for the generation to come,
    and let his future creatures praise the LORD:
    “The LORD looked down from his holy height,
    from heaven he beheld the earth,
    To hear the groaning of the prisoners,
    to release those doomed to die.”

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    The children of your servants shall abide,
    and their posterity shall continue in your presence,
    That the name of the LORD may be declared in Zion,
    and his praise, in Jerusalem,
    When the peoples gather together,
    and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.

    R. From heaven the Lord looks down on the earth.

    Gospel: Mk 8:27-33

    Jesus and his disciples set out for the villages of Caesarea Philippi. Along the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others one of the prophets.” And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said to him in reply, “You are the Christ.” Then he warned them not to tell anyone about him.

    He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and rise after three days. He spoke this openly. Then Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. At this he turned around and, looking at his disciples, rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”

    via USCCB | NAB – February 17, 2011.

    Just in case some do not see the parallel, Matthew recounts this event (in a little more detail) in Chapter 16 of his Gospel:

    Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.

    From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men.” (Matthew (RSV) 16:13-23)

    This passage from Matthew contains two key verses that show that Peter is made by Jesus the “Chief of the Apostles” otherwise known today as the pope (Mt 16:18), the bishop who has primacy over all bishops and is the visible head of the Christ’s Church on earth and whose office is protected by God, the holy Spirit from teaching error as is the Church herself. The next verse, 19, we find the fulfillment of a prophetic verse in Isaiah 22:22, “And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David; he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.”

    Some Protestants have used the second part of the two passages quoted above to show that Jesus’ rebuke of Peter demonstrates that he was more of Satan than of Christ. However, this is not the case as Mark’s account clarifies – Peter is not thinking of Christ’s mission as that of spiritual redemption but more in line with what many Jews then, and now, wrongly perceived the Messiah to be – a political liberator.