Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the catholic faith. Which faith unless every one do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly. And the catholic faith is this: that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity; neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Essence. For there is one Person of the Father; another of the Son; and another of the Holy Ghost. But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one; the Glory equal, the Majesty coeternal. Such as the Father is; such is the Son; and such is the Holy Ghost. The Father uncreated; the Son uncreated; and the Holy Ghost uncreated. The Father unlimited; the Son unlimited; and the Holy Ghost unlimited. The Father eternal; the Son eternal; and the Holy Ghost eternal. And yet they are not three eternals; but one eternal. As also there are not three uncreated; nor three infinites, but one uncreated; and one infinite. So likewise the Father is Almighty; the Son Almighty; and the Holy Ghost Almighty. And yet they are not three Almighties; but one Almighty. So the Father is God; the Son is God; and the Holy Ghost is God. And yet they are not three Gods; but one God. So likewise the Father is Lord; the Son Lord; and the Holy Ghost Lord. And yet not three Lords; but one Lord. For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity; to acknowledge every Person by himself to be God and Lord; So are we forbidden by the catholic religion; to say, There are three Gods, or three Lords. The Father is made of none; neither created, nor begotten. The Son is of the Father alone; not made, nor created; but begotten. The Holy Ghost is of the Father and of the Son; neither made, nor created, nor begotten; but proceeding. So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons; one Holy Ghost, not three Holy Ghosts. And in this Trinity none is before, or after another; none is greater, or less than another. But the whole three Persons are coeternal, and coequal. So that in all things, as aforesaid; the Unity in Trinity, and the Trinity in Unity, is to be worshipped. He therefore that will be saved, let him thus think of the Trinity.
Furthermore, it is necessary to everlasting salvation; that he also believe faithfully the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. For the right Faith is, that we believe and confess; that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man; God, of the Substance [Essence] of the Father; begotten before the worlds; and Man, of the Substance [Essence] of his Mother, born in the world. Perfect God; and perfect Man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting. Equal to the Father, as touching his Godhead; and inferior to the Father as touching his Manhood. Who although he is God and Man; yet he is not two, but one Christ. One; not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh; but by assumption of the Manhood into God. One altogether; not by confusion of Substance [Essence]; but by unity of Person. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man; so God and Man is one Christ; Who suffered for our salvation; descended into hell; rose again the third day from the dead. He ascended into heaven, he sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty, from whence he will come to judge the living and the dead. At whose coming all men will rise again with their bodies; And shall give account for their own works. And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting; and they that have done evil, into everlasting fire. This is the catholic faith; which except a man believe truly and firmly, he cannot be saved.
Today on Twitter one of my favorite English Bishops posted the image that’s the image for this post. It reminded me of a quote:
Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.French Philosopher Denis Diderot (during the French Revolution)
Our current cultural moment seems to be careening towards something akin to the French Revolution. Screaming in the streets with the Antifa crowd and general pro-death demonstrators. A “die in” over a Chick Fil-a opening in Canada. The hyperbole is mind boggling over a Christian owned business that sells decent food, is closed on Sunday, and, most shockingly, gives money to Christian causes. The horror.
We can’t seem to agree that a man can’t actually ecome a woman. Or, if there is anything uniquely male or female or just a mumbled jumbled mess of whatever suits our fancy at whatever moment. And disagreement makes you literally a monster.
We’re moving towards the moment when they’ll want to strangle the last Classical Liberal with the entrails of the Last Christian. Which, for the Christian, isn’t a problem. We have already died.
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Carl Trueman summarises the way John Scotus Erigena, perhaps the greatest thinker of the early Middle Ages, approached the problem of evil:
— Read on thinktheology.co.uk/blog/article/john_scotus_erigena_and_the_hole_in_our_socks
Was listening was a church history lecture and this topic came up. Interesting imagery.
A friend from church invested a lot of time and arranged this study Bible using the writings of the Early Church Fathers.
This will work wonderfully for preparing for the Coffee and Catechism podcast.
A quick note on the podcast. I’ve been delayed because the new catechism hasn’t been released. That’s important because I have it from a reliable source that there has been enough edits to warrant waiting for the new one and not using the rough draft copy that’s currently available.
Soli Deo Gloria
TGIF is a common phrase, meaning of course: Thank God it’s Friday.
Well, since it is in fact Friday, I will thank God it is Friday. However, not for the same reason as the originators of the phrase probably meant it.
In 1 Thessalonians 5 Paul encourages the Thessalonians to be ready for the Day of the Lord. To live ready to be judged by the Lord. Note that Paul closes the letter with “The Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you”, so all this is in the power of Christ working in us.
Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, givethanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.
So, let us give thanks in all circumstances. If it’s Friday or, even if, ugh, it’s a Monday. Or we’re sick. Or we are well. Or we are unemployed. Or we have much. We are already rich in the Grace of our Lord!
The Lord knows you and calls you by name. Let us go and love one another as Christ loved us.
My apologies for not writing much at all recently. I’m working on a podcast to share with you all. It’s on Catechesis and I’ll be working through the Catechism of The Anglican Church in North America.
Please pray for me. The first three episodes are currently in production. A launch date to be announced soon.
Soli Deo Gloria
A number of months ago, I decided to start wearing my cross in a visible manner. Meaning, for years I’ve worn one, but under my shirt. Now, at work I wear it outside my shirt, but under my tie. The rest of the time, it’s outside of whatever casual shirt I’m wearing that day.
There were a number of factors that went into this decision. I have a friend who until a few months ago worked mentoring men recently released from prison. He always wore his cross on his chest. I also read an article about clergy wearing the collar in public and how it consciously affects the person wearing it and the one the people who see clergy wearing one.
I also reflected on my own response to seeing people wearing a cross openly. Granted there are many situations where it is fairly obvious the cross isn’t intended as a display for religious reasons but as a fashion statement, a trinket worn with other symbols: a heart, a star, a yin and yang, and maybe a unicorn. In those times when I saw someone wearing one in a serious way, I did perceive that person differently. Was their behavior out of line in my mind, or were they kindhearted and gentle?
In the United States, and most “Western” countries generally, there does not exist a distinct method of dress for Christians. In more predominately Eastern Orthodox counties the women may be veiled or wear a head covering of some kind. Additionally, in predominately Muslim countries, the Christians generally live in close proximity to one another. They are then distinguished by how they don’t look and behave like the majority religion’s adherents.
So I tried wearing it outside my shirt. I discovered I am quite conscious of it. It triggers an immediate sense of “dear Lord help me!” My Lord and Savior died on a cross. Because of that atoning sacrifice, He was resurrected and ascended into heaven. He has called me to himself, relieved me of my burden of sin and set me free to live in and through Him. I am one of his ambassadors of reconciliation (2 Cor. 5 18-21). For me then, it focuses my mind on how I behave.
At the same time I am aware of a stereotype. The sneering, judgmental usually old person typecast in movies as the bigoted or hypocritical “christian”. Nearly always there’s a large cross either worn around the neck or placed someplace prominently in the home. This person is cold and callous. This person usually appears to have ice water running through their veins rather than any sort of life giving red blood. I certainly don’t want to be this person nor do I wish to be associated with them in anyone’s mind.
So, as I thought about it, I realized I have no control over how others see me. And just because I have a particular stereotype stuck in my head doesn’t mean others have the same imagery floating around in their skulls. So I went with wearing it on the outside. It helps me to live in a manner worthy of the gospel (Philippians 1:27). There is a phrase used commonly in Anglican circles, usually around whether to go to confession with a priest (I tried finding the origin of the phrase and was unsuccessful): “all may, some should, none must.” So, for me, this is a I should. If it stirs me this much to desire to act in a manner of the upward calling, then I shall.