Lutheran, Catholics "on the way" to greater unity

Started by Brian Stoffregen, October 30, 2015, 03:03:32 PM

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Team Hesse

Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


Lou

Brian Stoffregen

Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy. There is no reading, translating, interpreting that is not centered on our human understanding of the words, grammar, history, context, and theology.


The words God has given us in Mark 15:39, ἀληθῶς οὗτος ὁ ἄνθρωπος υἱος θεοῦ ἦν, are most literally understood/translated: "truly this human was a son of a god." A translator can argue that the genitive, "of god," turns "son" into a definite person so it can be translated, "the son of God" even though "the" is not written in the Greek. That translation comes as much or more from the mind of the translator than from the words of the text.


Which is a theocentric reading of what is presented and which is an anthropocentric reading of it?
I flunked retirement. Serving as a part-time interim in Ferndale, WA.

Team Hesse

Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Lou

Michael Slusser

I've learned that the same document has appeared on the USCCB's website. http://www.usccb.org/news/2015/15-147.cfm An explanation introduces it and reveals that this is a US initiative that seeks worldwide approval:

QuoteIn October both the ELCA Conference of Bishops—an advisory body of the church—and the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) received and unanimously affirmed the 32 Agreements. ELCA bishops requested that the ELCA Church Council accept them and forward the entire document to the 2016 ELCA Churchwide Assembly, the denomination's highest legislative body.

The document seeks reception of the Statement of Agreements from The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU). The LWF is a global communion of 145 churches in 98 countries worldwide. The ELCA is the communion's only member church from the United States.

So it's cheerful and no doubt worth reading, but not "news" or "the future" in any dramatic sense.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
Retired Roman Catholic priest and theologian

Brian Stoffregen

Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 03:39:59 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Never read Schleiermacher. I still don't see the dichotomy that you are trying to make. I believe that God is certainly the speaker in scriptures. It is the living Word of God. It is also like an onion with many layers. The we peal back, the more we discover God speaking to us. Digging deeper into the words of scripture takes human effort. One of the exercises I do in a Bible study is to ask, "What's the difference between reading the Bible and studying the Bible?" Answers include, the amount of time spent, the resources used (e.g., a dictionary, a concordance, commentaries, multiple translations,) taking notes.


We are not the first people to hear God speaking to us through these words. Discovering how the first hearers, as well as hearers throughout the generations have heard God speaking to them, helps us hear God speaking to us.
I flunked retirement. Serving as a part-time interim in Ferndale, WA.

Brian Stoffregen

Quote from: Michael Slusser on November 02, 2015, 04:31:47 PM
I've learned that the same document has appeared on the USCCB's website. http://www.usccb.org/news/2015/15-147.cfm An explanation introduces it and reveals that this is a US initiative that seeks worldwide approval:

QuoteIn October both the ELCA Conference of Bishops—an advisory body of the church—and the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) received and unanimously affirmed the 32 Agreements. ELCA bishops requested that the ELCA Church Council accept them and forward the entire document to the 2016 ELCA Churchwide Assembly, the denomination's highest legislative body.

The document seeks reception of the Statement of Agreements from The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU). The LWF is a global communion of 145 churches in 98 countries worldwide. The ELCA is the communion's only member church from the United States.

So it's cheerful and no doubt worth reading, but not "news" or "the future" in any dramatic sense.

Peace,
Michael


Perhaps like what one man and a few followers did in Germany that transformed the entire Christian church, perhaps what a few of us do in the United States might transform Christianity.
I flunked retirement. Serving as a part-time interim in Ferndale, WA.

Fletch

Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 05:04:02 PM
Quote from: Michael Slusser on November 02, 2015, 04:31:47 PM
I've learned that the same document has appeared on the USCCB's website. http://www.usccb.org/news/2015/15-147.cfm An explanation introduces it and reveals that this is a US initiative that seeks worldwide approval:

QuoteIn October both the ELCA Conference of Bishops—an advisory body of the church—and the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) received and unanimously affirmed the 32 Agreements. ELCA bishops requested that the ELCA Church Council accept them and forward the entire document to the 2016 ELCA Churchwide Assembly, the denomination's highest legislative body.

The document seeks reception of the Statement of Agreements from The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU). The LWF is a global communion of 145 churches in 98 countries worldwide. The ELCA is the communion's only member church from the United States.

So it's cheerful and no doubt worth reading, but not "news" or "the future" in any dramatic sense.

Peace,
Michael


Perhaps like what one man and a few followers did in Germany that transformed the entire Christian church, perhaps what a few of us do in the United States might transform Christianity.

I sure hope you are referring to Martin Luther (and Martin Chemnitz and Johann Gerhard) and not Friedrich Schleiermacher in your quest for tranforming Christianity in the US - the latter had a rather destructive impact on orthodox Christianity, in my opinion.

... Fletch

Team Hesse

Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 05:02:19 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 03:39:59 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Never read Schleiermacher. I still don't see the dichotomy that you are trying to make.


Agreed, you don't.


Lou

Brian Stoffregen

Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 08:34:16 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 05:02:19 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 03:39:59 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Never read Schleiermacher. I still don't see the dichotomy that you are trying to make.


Agreed, you don't.


Please illustrate the difference by exegeting a passage of scripture from both your theocentric and what you suppose is an anthropocentric approach. Perhaps key verses in Protestant Catholic discussions: Matthew 16:13-20.
I flunked retirement. Serving as a part-time interim in Ferndale, WA.

Charles Austin

The steps being taken are "news," Fr. Slusser, and do have some real possibilities of being a part of "the future."
Ecumenical dialogue - that is, the official, bi-lateral, church-endorsed discussions - takes place "officially" involving the theologians, priests, pastors and lay people appointed to those dialogues by our church bodies. The dialogue teams meet, sometimes for years, and issue their reports. Those reports can make news and the findings and agreements can make their way into the lives of our people and our churches.
But a key step in the "official" process is official "reception" of the dialogues and their recommendations. On the inter-Protestant level, this happens when we conclude that we can declare "altar and pulpit fellowship" or share clergy across denominational lines. This is where the official dialogues has real "official" impact on the lives of our people and our parishes.
When actions by the ELCA Church Council, our bishops and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops make specific recommendations and policies for our churches, this means the "theological" dialogues become churchly and pastoral reality.
That's why some of us are excited about the plans to commemorate the events of 1517 ecumenically and with the new emphasis on the results of 40+ years of dialogue rather than on the schism in the church 500 years ago.
Iowa-born. Long-time in NY/New Jersey, former LWF staff in Geneva.
ELCA PASTOR, ordained 1967. Former journalist. Retired in Minneapolis.
GUILTY on ALL 34 counts

Team Hesse

Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 03, 2015, 12:39:20 AM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 08:34:16 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 05:02:19 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 03:39:59 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Never read Schleiermacher. I still don't see the dichotomy that you are trying to make.


Agreed, you don't.


Please illustrate the difference by exegeting a passage of scripture from both your theocentric and what you suppose is an anthropocentric approach. Perhaps key verses in Protestant Catholic discussions: Matthew 16:13-20.


This should be a key passage......is it about Peter, the Church, and what we are to do? Or about Jesus? His person and work, and how that work is impacting the world?


Lou

Team Hesse

Quote from: Charles Austin on November 03, 2015, 04:30:16 AM
The steps being taken are "news," Fr. Slusser, and do have some real possibilities of being a part of "the future."
Ecumenical dialogue - that is, the official, bi-lateral, church-endorsed discussions - takes place "officially" involving the theologians, priests, pastors and lay people appointed to those dialogues by our church bodies. The dialogue teams meet, sometimes for years, and issue their reports. Those reports can make news and the findings and agreements can make their way into the lives of our people and our churches.
But a key step in the "official" process is official "reception" of the dialogues and their recommendations. On the inter-Protestant level, this happens when we conclude that we can declare "altar and pulpit fellowship" or share clergy across denominational lines. This is where the official dialogues has real "official" impact on the lives of our people and our parishes.
When actions by the ELCA Church Council, our bishops and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops make specific recommendations and policies for our churches, this means the "theological" dialogues become churchly and pastoral reality.
That's why some of us are excited about the plans to commemorate the events of 1517 ecumenically and with the new emphasis on the results of 40+ years of dialogue rather than on the schism in the church 500 years ago.


And the orchestra played on while the great ship Titanic slipped beneath the cold, icy waters of the north Atlantic....


Lou

Charles Austin

I am not surprised, Lou, that you are as apocalyptic about the Church Catholic as you are about our nation and the world. Everything, you say, is lost or sinking. Except perhaps you and your congregation; and you don't seem much interested in reaching out or serious dialogue with the rest of us.
But I could be wrong about that.
Iowa-born. Long-time in NY/New Jersey, former LWF staff in Geneva.
ELCA PASTOR, ordained 1967. Former journalist. Retired in Minneapolis.
GUILTY on ALL 34 counts

Team Hesse

Quote from: Charles Austin on November 03, 2015, 09:04:16 AM
I am not surprised, Lou, that you are as apocalyptic about the Church Catholic as you are about our nation and the world. Everything, you say, is lost or sinking. Except perhaps you and your congregation; and you don't seem much interested in reaching out or serious dialogue with the rest of us.
But I could be wrong about that.


No, I am interested in serious dialog... tell me about our Lord Jesus, His way, and work in the world. Try it. Other than that, you might want to take a peak at Ecclesiastes--my uncle recommended to me a long time ago that every pastor should read Luther's commentary on that tome annually. It tends to be sobering.
And I am not as apocalyptic as you may suppose. Like Jeremiah who was told to go by a field as the destruction of Judah was being foretold, we are in the process of buying another farm. There is life and then there is LIFE. It is important to know the distinction.


Lou

Fletch

Quote from: Team Hesse on November 03, 2015, 06:58:26 AM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 03, 2015, 12:39:20 AM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 08:34:16 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 05:02:19 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 03:39:59 PM
Quote from: Brian Stoffregen on November 02, 2015, 03:17:07 PM
Quote from: Team Hesse on November 02, 2015, 01:21:50 PM
Well, you are not getting the point. What is needed is a theocentric approach to scripture--one that believes what is presented--and not a convergence of various anthropocentric readings of same. Such a reading requires hard work, perseverance, and humility. Attributes in short supply in the fallen context.


How can one believe what is presented if they don't read and understand what is presented?


Theocentric vs. anthropocentric readings is a false dichotomy.


An anthropocentric understanding of humanity can only speak this way.....You are very well-tuned in the philosophical categories of Schleiermacher. There are other ways of reasoning more congenial to Christian faith. Jesus, not I, is the alpha and the omega. We need to recover the hearing and understanding that in scripture God is the speaker and we are the hearers and move away from the historical notion that scripture is an ancient artifact to be examined and analyzed by our intellect and other means for whatever we can imagine may have been in there.


Never read Schleiermacher. I still don't see the dichotomy that you are trying to make.


Agreed, you don't.


Please illustrate the difference by exegeting a passage of scripture from both your theocentric and what you suppose is an anthropocentric approach. Perhaps key verses in Protestant Catholic discussions: Matthew 16:13-20.


This should be a key passage......is it about Peter, the Church, and what we are to do? Or about Jesus? His person and work, and how that work is impacting the world?


Lou

And from Matthew 16:13-20 "on this rock", is the church going to be built on Peter (the man - anthropocentric) or on Peter's confession (the church of confessing Christians - theocentric)?

... Fletch

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