Skip to main content


Showing posts from June 22, 2014

You Might Be A Christian If...

5. Someone says, "Proverbs 31," and you either lament your sad estate, or say, "I don't want to talk about the opposite sex right now." 4. You have ever been at a wedding, and wondered at its canonical validity. (Fullness of Truth/Ben Nguyen/Canon Law Bonus) 3. You shout out Scripture references at random, in conversations about other stuff. 2. Finish the phrase: "God is good..." (And no, the correct answer is not, "Give us the chocolate cake!" but I think Jesus does a great Cosby impression.) 1. You have ever wanted to slap the next person who says, "Sunday fun day!" [Side-Rant: I'm not even a strict observer of the Sabbath in any form. Not even close. I won't judge you if you go out to eat, or watch the Super Bowl. But I'll tell you this: I'm fully aware when it's a Sunday. Sunday is the day the Lord Jesus rose from the dead for you and me. "Fun" just doesn't get it. I'm all for rest

95 Theses XV: The Return Of The Heresy

71.  Let him be anathema and accursed who denies the apostolic character of the indulgences. My comment: He does realize, that like the rest of us, his anathema means 2 things: Jack and Squat? In other news, too bad he didn't feel the same way about Holy Orders.  72.  On the other hand, let him be blessed who is on his guard against the wantonness and license of the pardon-merchant's words. My comment: Vigilance is never a bad thing. 73.  In the same way, the pope rightly excommunicates those who make any plans to the detriment of the trade in indulgences. My comment: Honestly, Marty, pick a position and go with it! 74.  It is much more in keeping with his views to excommunicate those who use the pretext of indulgences to plot anything to the detriment of holy love and truth. My comment: I agree that it is just and prudent of the pope to excommunicate those who set themselves against holy love and truth under the pretext of something else. 75.  It is foolish to think th

95 Theses XIV: A Walk To Heresy

66.  Therefore the treasures of the gospel are nets which, in former times, they used to fish for men of wealth. My comment: "These are the darkest days of wickedness ever in the Church!" said every schismatic and heretic in history. We can't do anything, either, because he doesn't name names, and his grasp of what the Church actually teaches... 67.  The indulgences, which the merchants extol as the greatest of favours, are seen to be, in fact, a favourite means for money-getting. My comment: If people were teaching falsehood anywhere in my diocese, I'm informing my priest, and most likely, the bishop. He is Christ among us. And beyond him, the Holy Father. If the abuses are that severe, we don't start a discussion. 68.  Nevertheless, they are not to be compared with the grace of God and the compassion shown in the Cross. My comment: Why juxtapose them? The true teaching of the Church on any matter is as life-giving as any appeal to conversion. 69.  Bish

95 Theses XIII: Nightmare On Heresy Street

61.  For it is clear that the power of the pope suffices, by itself, for the remission of penalties and reserved cases. My comment: This is in contradiction to what he said in (6). (And other places) Were you lying then, or are you lying now? 62.  The true treasure of the church is the Holy gospel of the glory and the grace of God. My comment: The true treasure of man, and God's intent for man, is the Church. It is not a jar of clay that contains the gospel; it is the gospel. It is that communion with God and others which is a foretaste of the glory to come. 63.  It is right to regard this treasure as most odious, for it makes the first to be the last. My comment: Ignore this fine-sounding statement; he's setting us up for something worse. 64.  On the other hand, the treasure of indulgences is most acceptable, for it makes the last to be the first. My comment: Ignore, continued. 65.  Therefore the treasures of the gospel are nets which, in former times, they used to fis

95 Theses XII: A Few Good Heresies

56.  The treasures of the church, out of which the pope dispenses indulgences, are not sufficiently spoken of or known among the people of Christ. My comment: I agree completely. 57. That these treasures are not temporal are clear from the fact that many of the merchants do not grant them freely, but only collect them. My comment: Not much to say here. 58.  Nor are they the merits of Christ and the saints, because, even apart from the pope, these merits are always working grace in the inner man, and working the cross, death, and hell in the outer man. My comment: Troubling that he puts the cross next to death and hell. A see a false Law-Gospel dichotomy here. And a nominalistic saint-sinner one, too.  59.  St. Laurence said that the poor were the treasures of the church, but he used the term in accordance with the custom of his own time. My comment: OOOH, burn! 60.  We do not speak rashly in saying that the treasures of the church are the keys of the church, and are bes

5 Thoughts For Today

5. First elimination matches for the World Cup. USA plays Belgium on Tuesday. 4. Chances are, I'm going to watch "Dune" a lot of times. It might be my favorite story. 3. If Tolkien's "Beowulf" doesn't get here soon, I'm going to freak out. 2. Why wasn't Landon Donovan chosen to back up Altidore? 1. No, it's not a "sinful desire," but it may be a disordered one, and there is a difference. Sin, properly speaking, involves the will; in the discussion in Romans 7, St. Paul doesn't make the distinction, but it's there.

95 Theses XI: 'H' Is For Heresy

51.  Christians should be taught that the pope would be willing, as he ought if necessity should arise, to sell the church of St. Peter, and give, too, his own money to many of those from whom the pardon-merchants conjure money. My comment: I don't see how the pope could be responsible for the possible imprudence of the people. 52.  It is vain to rely on salvation by letters of indulgence, even if the commissary, or indeed the pope himself, were to pledge his own soul for their validity. My comment: To my knowledge, the Church has never taught that indulgences could forgive sins. 53.  Those are enemies of Christ and the pope who forbid the word of God to be preached at all in some churches, in order that indulgences may be preached in others. My comment: If so, then name names. There is no point in throwing out vague accusations that no one can do anything about. 54.  The word of God suffers injury if, in the same sermon, an equal or longer time is devoted to indulgences than

5 Thoughts For Today

5. I'd love to go on epic rants against female ordination, (I sympathize, gents, I really do) but I can't. Rather, I feel compelled to point out that John MacArthur isn't pastor of a church, either. 4. I can't follow this with a statement about agreeing with Rachel Held Evans. I just can't. It's the principle of the thing. 3. How do you play baseball for more than a decade without learning to slide properly? That was awful. 2. I don't think enjoying soccer makes you un-American, and some people will look really silly when we win the World Cup. 1. Yeah, I said it.

95 Theses X: Back In The Heresy

46.  Christians should be taught that, unless they have more than they need, they are bound to retain what is only necessary for the upkeep of their home, and should in no way squander it on indulgences. My comment: If they are prudent to do other good works with whatever excess they have, indulgences should in no way be despised. The foolish make rash judgments concerning their spiritual value from the infidelity in their hearts. 47.  Christians should be taught that they purchase indulgences voluntarily, and are not under obligation to do so. My comment: I agree. 48.  Christians should be taught that, in granting indulgences, the pope has more need, and more desire, for devout prayer on his own behalf than for ready money. My comment: Devout prayer is indeed the heart of the matter. But of what use is the prayer of one who denies the pope's jurisdiction and authority? 49.  Christians should be taught that the pope's indulgences are useful only if one does not rely

95 Theses IX: The Heresy Strikes Back

41.  Papal indulgences should only be preached with caution, lest people gain a wrong understanding, and think that they are preferable to other good works: those of love. My comment: Everything in Sacred Theology should be preached with caution, and due reverence, by the nature of the case. Yet it must be said that everything that pertains to it should be preached at one time or another, and certainly not denied. Moreover, every action ought to be motivated by supernatural love, so the juxtaposition here is the mark of faulty thinking. 42.  Christians should be taught that the pope does not at all intend that the purchase of indulgences should be understood as at all comparable with the works of mercy. My comment: I think doing the work required to obtain an indulgence is a work of mercy. Sure, it's not the only one, but once more, we see the hardening of a false dichotomy, the fruit of Luther's ecclesial Nestorianism. 43.  Christians should be taught that one who gives to

95 Theses VIII: The Children Of The Heresy

36.  Any Christian whatsoever, who is truly repentant, enjoys plenary remission from penalty and guilt, and this is given him without letters of indulgence. My comment: This is very subtle, but he's denying the whole sacramental system here. No Catholic could say this in 1517 without being in heresy. 37.  Any true Christian whatsoever, living or dead, participates in all the benefits of Christ and the Church; and this participation is granted to him by God without letters of indulgence. My comment: Wrong. Indulgences are one of the means of participation in the life of grace. You can say 'participation' all you like, but if you deny the Church's intercession, and the sacramental system, you're not thinking like a Catholic. 38.  Yet the pope's remission and dispensation are in no way to be despised, for, as already said, they proclaim the divine remission. My comment: This sounds good, but it's wrong. A priest or bishop does not merely announce the divine