Papacy question

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jco2004

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According to Catholic dogma, declared since Vatican I, the Bishop of Rome, by virtue of his succession from St. Peter, has a unique charism whereby his ex cathedra declarations on matters of fiath and morals are infallible. This is true whetehr or not the other bishops agree with him, i.e. his declarations are “irreformable” by any other party. No other bishop has this charism. Supposedly Christ gave this charism to St. Peter, and did not give it to the other apostles. Yet it is long-standing teaching that the Bishop of Rome is still a bishop; there is no higher degree of ordination than bishop. So it must be in his specific capacity as the Bishop of Rome that he has this special charism. When did Christ confer this office, uniquely, on St. Peter? It obviously couldn’t have been whe Christ ordained all the apostles, for the scripture indicates all received the same ordination. The other possible answer is when Christ declared “you are Peter” in Matt. 16:18. Therefore, St. Peter must have been ordained Bishop of Rome at that point, which means that he was made a full bishop at that point, since obviously the bishop of Rome cannot be less than a full bishop. Why then did St. Peter, as scripture seems to indicate, later receive the same ordination as the other apostles from Christ? Wouldn’t this be superfluous, since he had already been ordained? Joe
 
One of the things to look at is Mt 16:19 “I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven”

He was only talking to Peter here not the other disciples. This authority was only given to Peter the others were given the ablity to forgive sins but only Peter was given the keys.
 
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jco2004:
The other possible answer is when Christ declared “you are Peter” in Matt. 16:18. Therefore, St. Peter must have been ordained Bishop of Rome at that point, which means that he was made a full bishop at that point, since obviously the bishop of Rome cannot be less than a full bishop. Why then did St. Peter, as scripture seems to indicate, later receive the same ordination as the other apostles from Christ? Wouldn’t this be superfluous, since he had already been ordained? Joe
In Matt 16:18-19, Peter is not ordained. Who he is and what he will be are declared, “I say, you are Peter and upon this rock I will build my church…” His ordination came at the Last Supper (like the other and with the others) and with the commission when Jesus ascended into heaven, “all authority in heaven and earth has been given to me, GO FORTH…”

the other Apostles and with that their successors share equally in that ministry, but amongst them only one is singled out, not as above them in power, but over them as guide and guard, as the one who 'strengthens the others" as Our Lord says.

He is the only one on whom the Lord bestows the keys of the kingdom. Jesus has these keys and he gives them to Peter.
This is where the charism of infallability lies. Jesus, upon Peter, builds His church and WILL NOT let the gates of hades prevail against it. Jesus guarantees this. He will see to it that it will not happen. thus the charism to Peter and his office amongst the others.

The One Good Shepherd (Jesus), knowing He would be returning to the Father, left us someone in his place, Peter, when He told Peter to feed His sheep, tend His sheep, etc.

Also, Jesus didn’t ordain Peter Bishop of Rome.
Peter died in Rome and so was succeeded by another in Rome.

sorry for the brevity and sporatic thoughts.
will try to be back. but check out , if you really want to get good solid info on this topic, Stephen Ray’s book * UPON THIS ROCK*, Ignatius Press
 
I don’t think it is important to debate WHEN Peter was ordained. It is important, however, to know that Peter always held a position of primacy amoung the apostles and this primacy carried through into their ordination.
 
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Cephas:
…but check out , if you really want to get good solid info on this topic, Stephen Ray’s book * UPON THIS ROCK*, Ignatius Press
I second this recommendation. “Upon This Rock” was one of the very first apologetic books I bought along with Keating’s “Catholicism and Fundamentalism.” Both are excellent works. Stephen Ray makes excellent use of historical information in his book as well as citing scripture, tradition, and the writings of the early Fathers as well.
 
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funkyhorn:
I don’t think it is important to debate WHEN Peter was ordained. It is important, however, to know that Peter always held a position of primacy amoung the apostles and this primacy carried through into their ordination.
Great comment buddy :gopray:
 
I would point out that Simon continued to be called Simon, until the death of Jesus, after which he was primarily called Peter. This is because with Jesus no longer physically present, there would not be any confusion about who was the rock, the physical head of the Church on earth.

To better understand the significance of the giving of the keys, see Isiah Chapter 22. Here the king establishes a new prime minister who was given the keys to the house of David. This gave him authority to bind and loose, just as described in Matthew. And it is regarding the same kingdom, since Jesus is described as a son of David. Jesus, the new King, appointed his prime minister, Simon.

Jesus was giving real authority to Simon (as can be seen by the use of his full name, Simon Barjona). And the giving of the keys also shows the intent of an office which would have successors.

I recommend a book called “And on This Rock” by Stanley Jaki. It provides unique insight into the backdrop for these famous words. Cesearea Phillipi was a 100 ft wall of rock, on top of which was Herod’s temple, and below which was the entrance to a cave used by the pagans of Pan’s cult. Here is where Jesus told Simon he was rock, on which Jesus would build His church, and the gates of hell would not prevail against it.

It is clear what Jesus meant in Matthew 16.
 
I have never read that the Church believes Jesus directly ordained Peter as “Bishop of Rome”

Jesus declared he would build His church on the rock of Peter - thereby giving Peter primacy over the other apostles.
He gave Peter the keys to the kingdom.
He declared that Peter had the power to loose and to bind.

He reaffirmed these blessings after the resurrection, three times telling Peter “feed my sheep”

So - it isn’t that the primacy was first existent to the Bishop of Rome - it first existed with Peter. Whoever succeeded Peter would inherit those blessings.
Peter later went to Rome, and became Bishop of Rome.
He was martyred at Nero’s Circus.
His successor was Linus (correct?)

And even though John was still alive - the christians looked to the Bishop of Rome for leadership.

At one point the Bishops of Rome resided in France - but they still retained the valid blessing through the line of succesors to Peter.
The popes returned to Rome - and there the blessing has remained.
 
Funkyhorn wrote: “I don’t think it is important to debate WHEN Peter was ordained.”

It is important, if the claim that Peter received some sort of special spiritual charism which sets him apart from the other apostles, is to be vindicated from scripture.

“It is important, however, to know that Peter always held a position of primacy amoung the apostles and this primacy carried through into their ordination.”

Depends what you mean by primacy. If you mean leadership, that’s pretty clear. If you mean primacy in the sense defined by Vatican I, that’s highly debatable. For one thing, you’ll have to explain why, at the Council of Jerusalem, it is St. James who presides and makes the formal decision.
 
Cephas wrote:
“He [Peter] is the only one on whom the Lord bestows the keys of the kingdom. Jesus has these keys and he gives them to Peter.
This is where the charism of infallability lies.”

When is the power of the keys actually given? In Matt. 16:19 Christ promises He will give them to Peter. It couldn’t have been at the ordination of the apostles, since nothing special is mentioned about Peter, unless it was extrascriptural.
 
Chris W. : “It is clear what Jesus meant in Matthew 16.”

Then why is there such a variety of positions taken on it by the Fathers? Sts. Ambrose and Augustine were pretty clear that they thought “You are Peter” referred to the substance of Peter’s confession. I may not agree with them exactly, but that’s what they said.
 
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jco2004:
Chris W. : “It is clear what Jesus meant in Matthew 16.”

Then why is there such a variety of positions taken on it by the Fathers?
Oh, really? A “variety” of positions? How convenient that you merely assert this without documenting it. :yawn:

Joe, as several people have already explained at length when you brought this up in another context:

(1) The dominant view in the Fathers is that the Rock is Peter’s person.

(2) As a corollary to this, the Fathers also sometimes identify the Rock with Peter’s faith and/or confession–but only in an ancillary sense AND only because they see Peter’s faith/confession as inseparably linked with his person. Thus the same Father can speak of the Rock as Peter himself in one passage and as Peter’s confession in another passage–without seeing any contradiction whatsoever between the two. Apparently the Fathers could entertain more than one interpretation–a primary interpretation plus secondary and tertiary interpretations deriving from the primary one–without getting their knickers in a twist. Would that modern critics of the papacy could do the same. 😛

(3) The vast majority of modern Scripture scholars–Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox–concur that the Rock of Matt. 16:18 is Peter. The syntax demands it; the passage’s very Semitic parallelism utterly breaks down otherwise.
Sts. Ambrose and Augustine were pretty clear that they thought “You are Peter” referred to the substance of Peter’s confession. I may not agree with them exactly, but that’s what they said.
Oh no! Not this canard again! :rolleyes:

Joe, I don’t know where you get your information. But I’ve seen reams of quotations from Anselm and Augustine et al. identifying the Rock as Peter’s person. (We already hashed over the one salient exception, Augustine’s rather strained identification of the Rock as Christ in the Retractationes.)

Perhaps someone on this forum can do us the favor or providing some of the many patristic passages–including many from Anselm and Augustine–clearly identifying the Rock with Peter’s person. 😛 I’ve been there, done that, and am rather weary of the effort, frankly.

Meanwhile, Joe, you can point us to those passages wherein Anselm, Augustine, et al., state: “Peter’s sucecssor has no jurisdictional primacy!”

I’d sure be interested in seeing those quotes…

God bless,
ZT :tiphat:
 
St. James was bishop of Jerusalem and would have participated in the Council of Jerusalem because of this:

However - I am curious about your claim as to his role as decision maker for the Church.

Are you referring to the Council that took place in the Book of Acts - where PETER was the one who made the final decision?

If not - please explain what decision you are referring to, and whether it was a decision that affected the entire church’s deposit of faith - or if it was a decision only affecting St. James area of jurisdiction. (Today’s bishops make decisions concerning matters restricted to their own diocese - the pope addresses issues that affect the church as a whole)
 
He is referring to Acts 15, I’m quite sure. James may appear to preside, in a sense, but like others said, this is because James was Bishop of Jerusalem…but Peter had the final word either way. Peter had the place of apostolic leadership…but the other apostles and bishops have authority as well.
(I’ve seen Acts 12:17 and Gal. 2:12 citing as Biblical references to St. Jame’s bishopric in Jerusalem, but how can we be certain these verses are not referring to St. James the Greater—that is, St. James of the 12, rather than St. James the Lesser, the Lord’s Kinsman?).
 
Anyone who wants to know if Peter was in fact put in THE position of THE leader needs to do a bible search, use a non Catholic bible site if you like, (try www.bible.com) type in each of the original Apostles, write down how many times they are referred to, leave Peter for last. You will find Peter mentioned more than ALL of the others combined. Now, numbers don’t prove his leadership, so, read those 150 or so verses. There will be NO doubt.
 
Almost right…Peter was not made bishop of Rome by Jesus, he was made the head of the apostles nd he excesised that authority through scripture…Peter Later in his life lead and was martyred in Rome and it has been traditional that the successor to Peter is the bishop of Rome…To the point that Clement a succesor to Peter adressed and lead the church even while John the apostle lived…
 
The Pope had to be infallible. What good is an inerrant Bible, if no one can say for sure what the Bible means? If we cannot know with absolute certainty what the correct interpretation (truth) is, then we cannot claim to know God who identifies Himself as Truth.

Furthermore, anyone who professes a belief in the inerrancy of the Bible already acknowledges the gift of infallibility. For God would have had to protect the authors, at least during the time of their writing, from error. So we know God can and has given the gift the gift of infallibility.

We know the belief has existed from the earliest times. Cyprian of Carthage wrote in 252 A.D., “Would heretics dare to come to the very seat of Peter whence apostolic faith is derived and whither no errors can come?” Someone may dispute whether Cyprian was correct, but we can at least say the belief is not new.

The Bible seems to clearly say Peter was given authority and an office with succession. The giving of keys makes this quite clear, if approached without prejudice.

So the better question is, “Why would someone NOT believe in the infallibility of the Pope?” Ironically, the only evidence supporting this position comes from sources outside the Bible. Yet the people who hold this position are usually the very ones who profess that the only truths worthy of belief must come from the Bible.
 
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ZoeTheodora:
Oh, really? A “variety” of positions? How convenient that you merely assert this without documenting it. :yawn:

It’s easily documentable, and I’m sure you’re aware of most of the patristic quotes. The passages from Origen, Cyril of Jerusalem, Chrysostom, et al. are all out there, readily accessible. I really don’t have the time to type them all out right now. I’m quite sure you’ve seen them.

Diane: Apparently the Fathers could entertain more than one interpretation–a primary interpretation plus secondary and tertiary interpretations deriving from the primary one–without getting their knickers in a twist. Would that modern critics of the papacy could do the same.

I can, but by admitting “ancillary” interpretations, you’ve already admitted that the interpretation of Mat. 16:18 is not entirely straightforward.

Diane: Joe, I don’t know where you get your information. But I’ve seen reams of quotations from Anselm and Augustine et al.

Well, here’s the ones I’m referring to:

Faith is the foundation of the Church, for it was not the person but the faith of St. Peter that it was said that the gates of hell should not prevail against it; it is the confession of faith that has vanquished hell. Jesus Christ is the Rock. He did not deny the grace of His name when He called him Peter, because he borrowed from the rock the constancy and solidity of his faith. Endeavor then, thyself to be a rock- thy rock is thy faith, and faith is the foundation of the Church. St. Ambrose, On the Incarnation.

What meaneth, “Upon this rock I will build My Church”? Upon this faith; upon this that has been said: “Thou art the Christ…” St. Augustine, Homily LIV on Matt. XIV.13.

Meanwhile, Joe, you can point us to those passages wherein Anselm, Augustine, et al., state: “Peter’s sucecssor has no jurisdictional primacy!”

Oh bother. Yeah, sure, I’ll find a patristic quote that says exactly that, when you find me one that says, “Peter and his successors have universal jurisdiction and primacy.” I hope you were kidding.
 
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Lorarose:
St. James was bishop of Jerusalem and would have participated in the Council of Jerusalem because of this:
However - I am curious about your claim as to his role as decision maker for the Church. Are you referring to the Council that took place in the Book of Acts - where PETER was the one who made the final decision?

I am referring to Acts 15, and if you read it as Peter making the final decision, then all I can say is that you’re on a different plane of reality from me.
 
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