Catholics as Just Another Denomination

Mark Horne says:

But what if Roman Catholics are sectarians dreaming they constitute the historic and perpetual center of the identity of the Church?

What if the real Catholic Church is simply continuing on and the Roman Catholic Church is pretending that it is not lacking that full communion because it has created without warrant autistic conditions for fellowship?

Evangelicals have many issues to work on as they continue through history. But there is nothing to rejoin. If the Roman Catholic Church and another denomination join and receive, then that is simply two denominations uniting together. And if they join and receive under the shared assumption that the Roman Catholic Church is some kind of perpetual “center” that all others are “peripheral” to and must come “back” to, then all that would mean is that the Christian people of the other denomination have become persuaded of sectarian superstitions.

9 thoughts on “Catholics as Just Another Denomination”

    1. They, with the EO simply can claim the Apostolic ground, based on the historical Catholic Church (from Ignatius to Irenaeus, Cyprian, etc.)! And the church is certainly not in any infancy, as in fact the church is under siege in this age of postmodernity. Note, the Reformation came out of the the Western Church.

      1. I am postmillenial, so I believe we have millenia to go in history. They may look at these days as the early church in a few thousand years. As Mark wrote, “To claim that they have any less solidarity with that history of the Church than do Tridentine Catholics is utter nonsense.” In other words, we are every bit as connected to Cyprian as they are. Their claiming things doesn’t make them so.

      2. The reality is, very few Reformed people today have a clue to both the past Church history of the East and West. Sadly I have seen this all too well! Note even how little Tom Wright understands the whole apostolic and patristic history! I am quite amazed how ignorant many of the American Reformed are on this subject also. Though I would not include Richard Muller here, at least fully.

        Btw, connection is one thing, understanding is quite another! Would that today’s Reformed theolog’s read people like Tertullian!

        And even old school Post-Mill knew that God had his hand on the Jewish people, and especially that certain remnant of faith (known only to God!)

  1. The reality is that very few people of any stripe have a clue about Church history. Have you been around your average Catholic lately? They are clueless. And that really is a broad generalization, look up guys like Peter Leithart and Joel Garver.

    Also, even those who *think* they understand church history often fail to account for the fact that we have only a sliver of documents left to us from those days. Countless sermons were preached and books written that are forever lost to us, so talking about the ‘consensus of history’ can be misleading.

    I’m not sure what your point about the Jewish people means?

      1. Well I am certainly no computer guy! Who knows where it went into cyberspace? 😉

        I am certainly a “churchman”, and some kind of a High Church guy in places. I am Reformed somewhat on soteriology, but I am also one that like some aspects of the Federal Vision, sacraments & covenant. And I like and read Leithart, though he can be eccentric at times, but then so can I! 😉

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