Contra Protestantism

St. James and St. Paul on "Works of the Law"

Written by Boniface

In any discussion with Protestants about how we are saved, the Catholic who insists on the reality of merit and the efficacy of good works done in grace will inevitably be countered by biblical passages that seem to indicate that our salvation is not contingent upon anything we do. What are the relevant biblical passages in this debate, and what is their true meaning? In James 2:24, St. James clearly says, “Man is justified by works and not by faith alone" (the only time the phrase "faith alone" appears in the Bible). For a Catholic, this could not be more clear. Yet Protestants will typically counter by turning to St. Paul's discussion of justification in Romans, specifically Romans 3:28, where St. Paul says precisely the opposite of St. James: "We hold that man is justified by faith apart from works of law." What is the solution here?

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Did St. Augustine believe in Sola Scriptura?

Written by Boniface

Anyone who has read any scholarly works by Protestant apologists knows how readily they turn to the venerable St. Augustine of Hippo to find support for their doctrines. Many Protestants, from Martin Luther to Adolf Harnack, held Augustine in great esteem and saw in him a pre-Reformation reformer. The Protestant Confession of Augsburg (1530) in Article 20 cites Augustine as a supporter of the Protestant doctrine of Sola Fide: “Augustine, in many volumes, defends grace and the righteousness of faith, over against the merits of works.” Calvin quoted Augustine more than any other theologian. Indeed, Augustine is almost universally praised by the intellectual Protestant world as a type of proto-Protestant. No such Protestant love is showed for saints like Cyprian, Athanasius or Gregory the Great. From whence comes this Protestant affection for St. Augustine?

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Rob Bell and the Fault Lines of Protestantism

Written by Boniface

 

FAULT LINE

(Collins English Dictionary)

1) (Earth Science/Geology Science) Also called fault plane Geology the surface of a fault fracture along which the rocks have been displaced

2) a potentially disruptive division or area of contention


This spring, Protestant pastor Rob Bell of Grand Rapids, MI. published a controversial book entitled Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell and the Fate of Every Person that caused controversy to erupt throughout the evangelical Protestant world.

The book basically presents a Protestant version of the heretical Balthasarian doctrine on hell - that in the end, we can expect or at least hope for a universal salvation of every human. He asserts that hell is simply what we created for ourselves by rejecting the will of God, but does not see it as an objective state of a damned soul in eternal separation from God. This book has prompted everything from blog responses by irritated evangelicals (here) to formal critiques in Christianity Today (see here) to television interviews (here and here).

Read more: Rob Bell and the Fault Lines of Protestantism
 

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