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Did the True Church Apostasized?

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by defense of truth, Oct 6, 2005.

?
  1. Yes it did!

    51.5%
  2. No it didn't.

    36.4%
  3. MAybe

    3.0%
  4. Not yet

    9.1%
  1. Katzpur

    Katzpur Not your average Mormon

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    Many Protestants today believe that, while the Catholic Church had strayed markedly from the Church Christ established during His ministry, the Reformation of the 15th and 16th centuries resolved the doctrinal and organizational disputes of the prior millennium and a half. That the great reformers recognized the need for a return to the pure form of Christianity the Savior had established while on the earth is evident in their comments to that effect:

    “I have sought nothing beyond reforming the Church in conformity with the Holy Scriptures. The spiritual powers have been… absolutely destroyed… I simply say that Christianity has ceased to exist among those who should have preserved it.” (Martin Luther, as quoted in Luther and His Times, page 509)

    “[There is] no regularly constituted church of Christ on earth, nor any person authorized to administer any church ordinance, nor can there be until new apostles are sent by the great head of the Church, for whose coming I am seeking.” (Roger Williams, as quoted in Picturesque America, or the Land We Live In; edited by William Cullen Bryant; 1872)

    “It does not appear that these extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit were common in the Church for more than two or three centuries…. From this time… the extraordinary gifts of the Holy Ghost were no longer to be found in the Christian church… The Christians… only had a dead form [of Christianity] left.” (John Wesley, as quoted in John Wesley’s Works, volume 7)

    Notice that none of these men claimed the authority to establish a new Church. They simply believed that many of the early Church's doctrines had evolved over time, and they were trying to reform the existing Church. But authority is essential. That is the one thing that Roman Catholicism and Mormonism have in common. We recognize this. Luther's Church taught what Luther believed to be true. But Luther never claimed to have the keys of authority given to Peter. In fact, he and Roger Williams both implied, at least, that they were in no position to be able to actually restore the primitive Church. They appear to have understood that divine intervention would be necessary in order for this to take place. They did, however, definitely recognize that an Apostasy had taken place.
     
  2. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    so then who really is the faithful and discreet slave?...matthew 24;45-47.... must be the faithful ones
     
  3. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    It is not just that I don't agree... it is that it makes no sense.

    You don't have any specific details that anyone could even come close to calling "evidence", but yet have taken this apostasy theory hook-line&sinker.

    Oh well.
     
  4. jonny

    jonny Well-Known Member

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    It's a good thing that you haven't accepted it and that it doesn't make sense to you - otherwise it wouldn't make sense for you to be Catholic. :)
     
  5. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    I guess you missed my point...

    Your "evidence" wouldn't hold up in a first year law students mock trial.

    Everything rests upon the claim that:
    Please provide some supporting evidence please.
     
  6. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

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    Evidence?! Evidence doesn't matter! It's 8 to 4! We obviously won! :biglaugh:
     
  7. Kowalski

    Kowalski Active Member

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    Well, i guess that about sums up your position then :)

    K
     
  8. Kowalski

    Kowalski Active Member

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    Who said that the Catholic Church has God's authority, ah, let me guess, it was the Catholic Church. People are always saying God gave us this, God did that, God favours us, when the real thruth is they just made it all up....

    K
     
  9. jonny

    jonny Well-Known Member

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    I see your point - just keep in mind that I am being dragged into this debate unwillingly (see my first post). :) I'll do some research and get back to you on that.

    First, I'd like to ask a question. Who leads your church - Christ or the Pope? I was told by a Catholic that the Pope cannot receive revelation for the church because revelation ended with the death of the last Apostle. Don't you think that Christ would want to have a role in leading his church?
     
  10. jonny

    jonny Well-Known Member

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    The Catholic church says that it has God's authority.
     
  11. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks... but I appreciate you being "dragged" into this... discussion about this topic does not bother me... it is when LDS members constantly bring up apostacy but never want to discuss it that truly gets under our skin. You believe it... it is a core belief of your faith... it should not be difficult to support it with something more than "well... we believe it happened.".
    Christ entrusted to the Catholic Church the fullness of grace and truth.
    The task of giving an authentic interpretation of the Word of God, whether in its written form or in the form of Tradition, has been entrusted to the living teaching office of the Church alone. Its authority in this matter is exercised in the name of Jesus Christ. This means that the task of interpretation has been entrusted to the bishops in communion with the successor of Peter, the Bishop of Rome.

    Public revelation means that something would be added to the faith that was not there before.... which is quite different from doctrinal development which is only clarification of existing beliefs.... that is what we mean by no new revelation.

    Christ has a role in the Church, but a role that has been in effect for ALL of history.... not just since 1839... get me?
     
  12. jonny

    jonny Well-Known Member

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    The first basis for LDS support of the apostasy we believe is found in the scriptures. Here is a list of scriptures that the LDS church inteprets as predicting an apostasy. I believe that someone pointed out that the Catholic church interprets these also of prophesying of an apostacy, but the church does not believe that it will be a complete apostasy.

    Matthew 24:9-11 - Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations fo my name's sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

    Mark 12:1-9 - 1 And he began to speak unto them by parables. A certain man planted a vineyard, and set an hedge about it, and digged a place for the winefat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country. 2 And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard. 3 And they caught him, and beat him, and sent him away empty. 4 And again he sent unto them another servant; and at him they cast stones, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled. 5 And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some. 6 Having yet therefore one son, his wellbeloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son. 7 But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be our's. 8 And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard. 9 What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others.

    Acts 3:19-21 - 19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord. 20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: 21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

    Galatians 1:6-9 - 6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

    2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 - 1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. 5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? 6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. 7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

    1 Timothy 4:1-3 - 1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; 2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; 3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

    2 Timothy 4:3-4 - 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

    2 Peter 2: 1-2 - 1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. 2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.

    Amos 8:11-12 - 11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it.
     
  13. Katzpur

    Katzpur Not your average Mormon

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    Scott,

    If you will remember back on the thread entitled something like "The Catholic Church has Never Changed It's Doctrines," I asked for some evidence of the Catholic belief in the Immaculate Conception of Mary, in Mary's perpetual virginity and in the belief that she ascended bodily into Heaven at the end of her life. I was looking for some indication that Jesus Christ or His Apostles or even their contemporaries taught these things about her. No one was able to provide me with anything.

    I also asked for first century references to the Trinity, as it is understood by Catholics today. Again, I received no responses. With regards to the Catholic Church naming people Saints and believing that they are somehow different from anyone else and can intercede with God on our behalf, well... I asked (on still another thread) when that first took place. No answer.

    And so, I am forced to conclude that none of these things (among a myriad of others) simply weren't taught anciently. Also, when I consider certain LDS doctrines and see evidence that they were taught as early as the first century, I can't help but find it to be more than just coincidental. It's not my intention to get into a heated debate on this subject either, and I'm not looking for a fight with anyone. But when you say that we've "taken this apostasy thing hook, line and sinker" without any "evidence" I feel compelled to point out that that's really not the case.

    Kathryn
     
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  14. Katzpur

    Katzpur Not your average Mormon

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    Good point, jonny. Here are three more.

    Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.

    Matthew 21:43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.

    Revelation 13:7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.


    As I understand it, the fact that the flock would not be spared, that the kingdom of God would be taken from those to whom it had been given, and that Satan would overcome the saints sounds pretty much like a "falling away" or the "apostasia" of which Paul warned. As to whether this falling away would be universal, I simply cannot see how 2 Thessalonians can be interpreted in any other way. Paul said that Christ would not return to being His millennial reign until an "apostasia" had taken place. How could he have possibly have meant that He would not return until after there had been some friction within the ranks and a few hundred individuals had left the Church? That had already taken place. It was happening as he spoke, as evidenced by the fact that he spoke on the subject to just about everyone who was willing to listen. There was an obvious urgency in his many warnings. He was trying to turn a situation around that he knew wasn't going to change. He was talking about a significant event with far-reaching consequences, not of a few isolated incidents of apostasy that would be quickly resolved.
     
  15. jonny

    jonny Well-Known Member

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    Perhaps Christ decided in 1820 that he wanted to have a more hands on role in leading his church to assist the world with preparation for his second coming.
     
  16. Searcher of Light

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    I was just throwing the cult idea out. Sometimes I think own my congregation is a cult ;)

    LDS seems to believe exactly the same as RC do with the continual revelation idea. Only the sources seem to vary. I appreciate being set straight. The Mormons I have talked with stated what I posted and were not very vocal on their stances concerning continual revelation.
     
  17. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Kathryn, red-herrings like this are not typical of you. I am surprised to see this coming from you.

    Assumption of Mary:

    A.D. 377
    “If the Holy Virgin had died and was buried, her falling asleep would have been surrounded with honour, death would have found her pure, and her crown would have been a virginal one...Had she been martyred according to what is written: 'Thine own soul a sword shall pierce', then she would shine gloriously among the martyrs, and her holy body would have been declared blessed; for by her, did light come to the world."
    Epiphanius, Panarion, 78:23

    A.D. 575-593
    "[T]he Apostles took up her body on a bier and placed it in a tomb; and they guarded it, expecting the Lord to come. And behold, again the Lord stood by them; and the holy body having been received, He commanded that it be taken in a cloud into paradise: where now, rejoined to the soul, [Mary] rejoices with the Lord's chosen ones..." Gregory of Tours, Eight Books of Miracles, 1:4

    A.D. 634
    "As the most glorious Mother of Christ, our Savior and God and the giver of life and immortality, has been endowed with life by him, she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him who has raised her up from the tomb and has taken her up to himself in a way known only to him." Modestus of Jerusalem, Encomium in dormitionnem Sanctissimae Dominae nostrae Deiparae semperque Virginis Mariae (PG 86-II,3306)

    Trinity:

    A.D. 213
    "Bear always in mind that this is the rule of faith which I profess; by it I testify that the Father, and the Son, and the Spirit are inseparable from each other, and so will you know in what sense this is said."
    Tertullian, Against Praxeas, 9

    Just in case you want more context of this document:

    A.D. 213
    "In the course of time, then, the Father forsooth was born, and the Father suffered, God Himself, the Lord Almighty, whom in their preaching they declare to be Jesus Christ. We, however, as we indeed always have done and more especially since we have been better instructed by the Paraclete, who leads men indeed into all truth), believe that there is one only God, but under the following dispensation, or oikonomia, as it is called, that this one only God has also a Son, His Word, who proceeded from Himself, by whom all things were made, and without whom nothing was made."
    Tertullian, Against Praxeas, 2

    A.D. 181
    "And first, they taught us with one consent that God made all things out of nothing; for nothing was coequal with God: but He being His own place, and wanting nothing, and existing before the ages, willed to make man by whom He might be known; for him, therefore, He prepared the world. For he that is created is also needy; but he that is uncreated stands in need of nothing. God, then, having His own Word internal within His own bowels, begat Him, emitting Him along with His own wisdom before all things. He had this Word as a helper in the things that were created by Him, and by Him He made all things. He is called governing principle' (arche), because He rules, and is Lord of all things fashioned by Him. He, then, being Spirit of God, and governing principle, and wisdom, and power of the highest, came down upon the prophets, and through them spoke of the creation of the world and of all other things. For the prophets were not when the world came into existence, but the wisdom of God which was in Him, and His holy Word which was always present with Him. Wherefore He speaks thus by the prophet Solomon: When He prepared the heavens I was there, and when He appointed the foundations of the earth I was by Him as one brought up with Him.' And Moses, who lived many years before Solomon, or, rather, the Word of God by him as by an instrument, says, In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.'" Theophilus of Antioch, To Autolycus, II:10

    I will pray for you all.

    ~Victor
     
  18. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Perhaps you should take your screen name more serious. If you read back on this very thread you would have seen that both me and Scott made it clear that revelation ended with the death of the last Apostle. We differ from LDS on this.

    ~Victor
     
  19. Merlin

    Merlin Active Member

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    I so much agree with you. Although I am not a Catholic, I do love joining in catholic services and sharing mass with them. The bells and the smells and the pageantry to put you in a superframe of mind to make your personal communication with God.

    I am fortunate enough to live 10 miles away from a big old English cathedral. It was built in about 1200 AD. To visit it on an unpopular day (perhaps a wet Wednesday morning) when the place is empty; to sit in one of the side chapels in the gloom with the only sound being the faint echoing of the organist practising one of his anthems; now that is spiritually uplifting.

    Yes, I do know you have simple temples, I have shared services with you. I must admit I have not been for a few years, because (forgive me) it takes about three years to stop your nice young men coming round every couple of months and knocking on the door after I've shared a service.
     
  20. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    I am not looking for "predictions" about apostasy, I am looking for hard evidence of the apostacy of the early Church.... either that, or admit you have none.
    You have yet to show ANY evidence that the Church was lacking a "hands on role" for the 1800 years previous to Mr. Smith, so speculation on what Christ "decided" is a bit premature.

    Come on guys... this should be easy... your ENTIRE theology rests upon this.... can not one of you provide any kind of evidence of apostacy other than "predictions" and assumptions?
     
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