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Luther's 95 Theses

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Loyal
In November 1517 Martin Luther wrote something similar to this. Luther's native language would have been German. However he wrote this in Latin.
This is a modern day English translation. This was during the beginning of something called the "Protestant Reformation". This was written over 500 years ago.
It's interesting many "protests" are happening in the US right now. The word 'Protestant" comes from Protest". (wikipedia doesn't agree, but I have many books
about this subject much older than wikipedia). What was being "protested was many of the Roman Catholic beliefs of that day, many of these continue even until today.
Excuse the spacing, it's a long document, I tried to clean it up as best I could.

In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

  1. [LEFT]When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, "Repent" ( Matthew 4:17 ), he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance. [/LEFT]
  2. [LEFT]This word cannot be understood as referring to the sacrament of penance, that is, confession and satisfaction, as administered by the clergy. [/LEFT]
  3. [LEFT]Yet it does not mean solely inner repentance; such inner repentance is worthless unless it produces various outward mortification of the flesh. [/LEFT]
  4. [LEFT]The penalty of sin remains as long as the hatred of self (that is, true inner repentance), namely till our entrance into the kingdom of heaven. [/LEFT]
  5. [LEFT]The pope neither desires nor is able to remit any penalties except those imposed by his own authority or that of the canons. [/LEFT]
  6. [LEFT]The pope cannot remit any guilt, except by declaring and showing that it has been remitted by God; or, to be sure, by remitting guilt in cases reserved to his judgment. If his right to grant remission in these cases were disregarded, the guilt would certainly remain unforgiven. [/LEFT]
  7. [LEFT]God remits guilt to no one unless at the same time he humbles him in all things and makes him submissive to the vicar, the priest. [/LEFT]
  8. [LEFT]The penitential canons are imposed only on the living, and, according to the canons themselves, nothing should be imposed on the dying. [/LEFT]
  9. [LEFT]Therefore the Holy Spirit through the pope is kind to us insofar as the pope in his decrees always makes exception of the article of death and of necessity. [/LEFT]
  10. [LEFT]Those priests act ignorantly and wickedly who, in the case of the dying, reserve canonical penalties for purgatory. [/LEFT]
  11. [LEFT]Those tares of changing the canonical penalty to the penalty of purgatory were evidently sown while the bishops slept ( Matthew 13:25 ). [/LEFT]
  12. [LEFT]In former times canonical penalties were imposed, not after, but before absolution, as tests of true contrition. [/LEFT]
  13. [LEFT]The dying are freed by death from all penalties, are already dead as far as the canon laws are concerned, and have a right to be released from them. [/LEFT]
  14. [LEFT]Imperfect piety or love on the part of the dying person necessarily brings with it great fear; and the smaller the love, the greater the fear. [/LEFT]
  15. [LEFT]This fear or horror is sufficient in itself, to say nothing of other things, to constitute the penalty of purgatory, since it is very near to the horror of despair. [/LEFT]
  16. [LEFT]Hell, purgatory, and heaven seem to differ the same as despair, fear, and assurance of salvation. [/LEFT]
  17. [LEFT]It seems as though for the souls in purgatory fear should necessarily decrease and love increase. [/LEFT]
  18. [LEFT]Furthermore, it does not seem proved, either by reason or by Scripture, that souls in purgatory are outside the state of merit, that is, unable to grow in love. [/LEFT]
  19. [LEFT]Nor does it seem proved that souls in purgatory, at least not all of them, are certain and assured of their own salvation, even if we ourselves may be entirely certain of it. [/LEFT]
  20. [LEFT]Therefore the pope, when he uses the words "plenary remission of all penalties," does not actually mean "all penalties," but only those imposed by himself. [/LEFT]
  21. [LEFT]Thus those indulgence preachers are in error who say that a man is absolved from every penalty and saved by papal indulgences. [/LEFT]
  22. [LEFT]As a matter of fact, the pope remits to souls in purgatory no penalty which, according to canon law, they should have paid in this life. [/LEFT]
  23. [LEFT]If remission of all penalties whatsoever could be granted to anyone at all, certainly it would be granted only to the most perfect, that is, to very few. [/LEFT]
  24. [LEFT]For this reason most people are necessarily deceived by that indiscriminate and high-sounding promise of release from penalty. [/LEFT]
  25. [LEFT]That power which the pope has in general over purgatory corresponds to the power which any bishop or curate has in a particular way in his own diocese and parish. [/LEFT]
  26. [LEFT]The pope does very well when he grants remission to souls in purgatory, not by the power of the keys, which he does not have, but by way of intercession for them. [/LEFT]
  27. [LEFT]They preach only human doctrines who say that as soon as the money clinks into the money chest, the soul flies out of purgatory. [/LEFT]
  28. [LEFT]It is certain that when money clinks in the money chest, greed and avarice can be increased; but when the church intercedes, the result is in the hands of God alone. [/LEFT]
  29. [LEFT]Who knows whether all souls in purgatory wish to be redeemed, since we have exceptions in St. Severinus and St. Paschal, as related in a legend. [/LEFT]
  30. [LEFT]No one is sure of the integrity of his own contrition, much less of having received plenary remission. [/LEFT]
  31. [LEFT]The man who actually buys indulgences is as rare as he who is really penitent; indeed, he is exceedingly rare. [/LEFT]
  32. [LEFT]Those who believe that they can be certain of their salvation because they have indulgence letters will be eternally damned, together with their teachers. [/LEFT]
  33. [LEFT]Men must especially be on guard against those who say that the pope's pardons are that inestimable gift of God by which man is reconciled to him. [/LEFT]
  34. [LEFT]For the graces of indulgences are concerned only with the penalties of sacramental satisfaction established by man. [/LEFT]
  35. [LEFT]They who teach that contrition is not necessary on the part of those who intend to buy souls out of purgatory or to buy confessional privileges preach unchristian doctrine. [/LEFT]
  36. [LEFT]Any truly repentant Christian has a right to full remission of penalty and guilt, even without indulgence letters. [/LEFT]
  37. [LEFT]Any true Christian, whether living or dead, participates in all the blessings of Christ and the church; and this is granted him by God, even without indulgence letters. [/LEFT]
  38. [LEFT]Nevertheless, papal remission and blessing are by no means to be disregarded, for they are, as I have said (Thesis 6), the proclamation of the divine remission. [/LEFT]
  39. [LEFT]It is very difficult, even for the most learned theologians, at one and the same time to commend to the people the bounty of indulgences and the need of true contrition. [/LEFT]
  40. [LEFT]A Christian who is truly contrite seeks and loves to pay penalties for his sins; the bounty of indulgences, however, relaxes penalties and causes men to hate them -- at least it furnishes occasion for hating them. [/LEFT]
  41. [LEFT]Papal indulgences must be preached with caution, lest people erroneously think that they are preferable to other good works of love. [/LEFT]
  42. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that the pope does not intend that the buying of indulgences should in any way be compared with works of mercy. [/LEFT]
  43. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that he who gives to the poor or lends to the needy does a better deed than he who buys indulgences. [/LEFT]
  44. [LEFT]Because love grows by works of love, man thereby becomes better. Man does not, however, become better by means of indulgences but is merely freed from penalties. [/LEFT]
  45. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that he who sees a needy man and passes him by, yet gives his money for indulgences, does not buy papal indulgences but God's wrath. [/LEFT]
  46. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that, unless they have more than they need, they must reserve enough for their family needs and by no means squander it on indulgences. [/LEFT]
  47. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that they buying of indulgences is a matter of free choice, not commanded. [/LEFT]
  48. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that the pope, in granting indulgences, needs and thus desires their devout prayer more than their money. [/LEFT]
  49. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that papal indulgences are useful only if they do not put their trust in them, but very harmful if they lose their fear of God because of them. [/LEFT]
  50. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that if the pope knew the exactions of the indulgence preachers, he would rather that the basilica of St. Peter were burned to ashes than built up with the skin, flesh, and bones of his sheep. [/LEFT]
  51. [LEFT]Christians are to be taught that the pope would and should wish to give of his own money, even though he had to sell the basilica of St. Peter, to many of those from whom certain hawkers of indulgences cajole money. [/LEFT]
  52. [LEFT]It is vain to trust in salvation by indulgence letters, even though the indulgence commissary, or even the pope, were to offer his soul as security. [/LEFT]
  53. [LEFT]They are the enemies of Christ and the pope who forbid altogether the preaching of the Word of God in some churches in order that indulgences may be preached in others. [/LEFT]
  54. [LEFT]Injury is done to the Word of God when, in the same sermon, an equal or larger amount of time is devoted to indulgences than to the Word. [/LEFT]
  55. [LEFT]It is certainly the pope's sentiment that if indulgences, which are a very insignificant thing, are celebrated with one bell, one procession, and one ceremony, then the gospel, which is the very greatest thing, should be preached with a hundred bells, a hundred processions, a hundred ceremonies. [/LEFT]
  56. [LEFT]The true treasures of the church, out of which the pope distributes indulgences, are not sufficiently discussed or known among the people of Christ. [/LEFT]
  57. [LEFT]That indulgences are not temporal treasures is certainly clear, for many indulgence sellers do not distribute them freely but only gather them. [/LEFT]
  58. [LEFT]Nor are they the merits of Christ and the saints, for, even without the pope, the latter always work grace for the inner man, and the cross, death, and hell for the outer man. [/LEFT]
  59. [LEFT]St. Lawrence said that the poor of the church were the treasures of the church, but he spoke according to the usage of the word in his own time. [/LEFT]
  60. [LEFT]Without want of consideration we say that the keys of the church, given by the merits of Christ, are that treasure. [/LEFT]
  61. [LEFT]For it is clear that the pope's power is of itself sufficient for the remission of penalties and cases reserved by himself. [/LEFT]
  62. [LEFT]The true treasure of the church is the most holy gospel of the glory and grace of God. [/LEFT]
  63. [LEFT]But this treasure is naturally most odious, for it makes the first to be last ( Matthew 20:16 ). [/LEFT]
  64. [LEFT]On the other hand, the treasure of indulgences is naturally most acceptable, for it makes the last to be first. [/LEFT]
  65. [LEFT]Therefore the treasures of the gospel are nets with which one formerly fished for men of wealth. [/LEFT]
  66. [LEFT]The treasures of indulgences are nets with which one now fishes for the wealth of men. [/LEFT]
  67. [LEFT]The indulgences which the demagogues acclaim as the greatest graces are actually understood to be such only insofar as they promote gain. [/LEFT]
  68. [LEFT]They are nevertheless in truth the most insignificant graces when compared with the grace of God and the piety of the cross. [/LEFT]
  69. [LEFT]Bishops and curates are bound to admit the commissaries of papal indulgences with all reverence. [/LEFT]
  70. [LEFT]But they are much more bound to strain their eyes and ears lest these men preach their own dreams instead of what the pope has commissioned. [/LEFT]
  71. [LEFT]Let him who speaks against the truth concerning papal indulgences be anathema and accursed. [/LEFT]
  72. [LEFT]But let him who guards against the lust and license of the indulgence preachers be blessed. [/LEFT]
  73. [LEFT]Just as the pope justly thunders against those who by any means whatever contrive harm to the sale of indulgences. [/LEFT]
  74. [LEFT]Much more does he intend to thunder against those who use indulgences as a pretext to contrive harm to holy love and truth. [/LEFT]
  75. [LEFT]To consider papal indulgences so great that they could absolve a man even if he had done the impossible and had violated the mother of God is madness. [/LEFT]
  76. [LEFT]We say on the contrary that papal indulgences cannot remove the very least of venial sins as far as guilt is concerned. [/LEFT]
  77. [LEFT]To say that even St. Peter if he were now pope, could not grant greater graces is blasphemy against St. Peter and the pope. [/LEFT]
  78. [LEFT]We say on the contrary that even the present pope, or any pope whatsoever, has greater graces at his disposal, that is, the gospel,spiritual powers, gifts of healing, etc., as it is written, 1 Corinthians 12:28 ). [/LEFT]
  79. [LEFT]To say that the cross emblazoned with the papal coat of arms, and set up by the indulgence preachers is equal in worth to the cross of Christ is blasphemy. [/LEFT]
  80. [LEFT]The bishops, curates, and theologians who permit such talk to be spread among the people will have to answer for this. [/LEFT]
  81. [LEFT]This unbridled preaching of indulgences makes it difficult even for learned men to rescue the reverence which is due the pope from slander or from the shrewd questions of the laity. [/LEFT]
  82. [LEFT]Such as: "Why does not the pope empty purgatory for the sake of holy love and the dire need of the souls that are there if he redeems an infinite number of souls for the sake of miserable money with which to build a church? The former reason would be most just; the latter is most trivial. [/LEFT]
  83. [LEFT]Again, "Why are funeral and anniversary masses for the dead continued and why does he not return or permit the withdrawal of the endowments founded for them, since it is wrong to pray for the redeemed?" [/LEFT]
  84. [LEFT]Again, "What is this new piety of God and the pope that for a consideration of money they permit a man who is impious and their enemy to buy out of purgatory the pious soul of a friend of God and do not rather, because of the need of that pious and beloved soul, free it for pure love's sake?" [/LEFT]
  85. [LEFT]Again, "Why are the penitential canons, long since abrogated and dead in actual fact and through disuse, now satisfied by the granting of indulgences as though they were still alive and in force?" [/LEFT]
  86. [LEFT]Again, "Why does not the pope, whose wealth is today greater than the wealth of the richest Crassus, build this one basilica of St. Peter with his own money rather than with the money of poor believers?" [/LEFT]
  87. [LEFT]Again, "What does the pope remit or grant to those who by perfect contrition already have a right to full remission and blessings?" [/LEFT]
  88. [LEFT]Again, "What greater blessing could come to the church than if the pope were to bestow these remissions and blessings on every believer a hundred times a day, as he now does but once?" [/LEFT]
  89. [LEFT]"Since the pope seeks the salvation of souls rather than money by his indulgences, why does he suspend the indulgences and pardons previously granted when they have equal efficacy?" [/LEFT]
  90. [LEFT]To repress these very sharp arguments of the laity by force alone, and not to resolve them by giving reasons, is to expose the church and the pope to the ridicule of their enemies and to make Christians unhappy. [/LEFT]
  91. [LEFT]If, therefore, indulgences were preached according to the spirit and intention of the pope, all these doubts would be readily resolved. Indeed, they would not exist. [/LEFT]
  92. [LEFT]Away, then, with all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, "Peace, peace," and there is no peace! ( Jeremiah 6:14 ) [/LEFT]
  93. [LEFT]Blessed be all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, "Cross, cross," and there is no cross! [/LEFT]
  94. [LEFT]Christians should be exhorted to be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, death and hell. [/LEFT]
  95. [LEFT]And thus be confident of entering into heaven through many tribulations rather than through the false security of peace ( Acts 14:22 ). [/LEFT]

I think it's worth a study of this. Even though it isn't "the Bible". Luther (and almost all Protestant historians) claim he was inspired by God to write this.
So why do most Protestants hold these beliefs (and others) against the Roman Catholic church?

... to be continued ...
 
Loyal
..and I see now that I have pasted it in here... there is a lot of page coding that didn't get translated correctly. Hopefully it is still readable.

At the time, the Roman Catholic church considered itself a monopoly on religion and "the Church" in general. There were other churches to be sure. The Orthodox church is as old (if not older) than the RC church for example.
But the RC church was the largest and most powerful by far. The emphasis was on what "the church" could do for you, rather than what Jesus could do for it. In many ways the church considered themselves more powerful than Jesus.

For example.. it wasn't Jesus who forgave your sins.. but rather "the church".
First there was something called "indulgences". This is where the modern word "indulge" comes from. Indulgences were a way you could "pay" for your sins. You didn't ask Jesus to forgive your sins.
You confessed your sins to a priest, and he decided how much the sin was worth. If it was a big sin, it cost a lot to be forgiven. If it was a small sin, it cost much less to be forgiven.
This was very similar the the old testament practice of animal sacrifice by priests to "pay for" sins. It wasn't always money, but it seems this was far and large the most common practice.
If you paid enough for your sin, the church could decide to forgive you and absolve you of your sins. The idea that Jesus could forgive your sins separately from the church was a foreign thought.

This practice was so prevalent and common, that you could plan your sins around it. I know next week I'm going to out drinking with my buddies at a stripper pub, God might not like it, but that's OK.
I'll just pay off the church "sin indulgences" after I do this, and then me and God will be all good again.

... to be continued ...
 
Active
hello ive read all your post on this subject .
firstly i agree it means protest against the catholc way ,some of my family are catholic so i thought ill read .
quote number 62 i believe as true the gospel and Grace.
of God ,
and quote no 79 says it all to me on the pope and catholic church very deep deception and the people follow. i live next to a beautifull old parish catholic church( all the bells and smells,i enjoy hearing the bells ring out Amazing grace and other hyms of old ) and it is a beautiful building but thats where it ends for me.
i once went there to a service many years ago and the first opening words were we pray to saint thomas so instantly i knew get out fast .The sign outside says church of england but after viewing their statement of faith it upholds the catholic way and traditions. so just my word on my own experience and the two verses that stood out x
 
Loyal
  1. When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, "Repent" ( Matthew 4:17 ), he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.
  2. This word cannot be understood as referring to the sacrament of penance, that is, confession and satisfaction, as administered by the clergy.
  3. Yet it does not mean solely inner repentance; such inner repentance is worthless unless it produces various outward mortification of the flesh.
  4. The penalty of sin remains as long as the hatred of self (that is, true inner repentance), namely till our entrance into the kingdom of heaven.
Luther addressed these as 4 separate items.
Luther died before Jacob Arminius was born. Yet he was Arminian in this respect. Repentance isn't something you do once and you're done.
Repentance is a continual life-style. When you sin ask for forgiveness and repent. When you sin again, ask for forgiveness again and repent again.

John 13:8; Peter *said to Him, "Never shall You wash my feet!" Jesus answered him, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me."
John 13:9; Simon Peter *said to Him, "Lord, then wash not only my feet, but also my hands and my head."
John 13:10; Jesus *said to him, "He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you."
John 13:11; For He knew the one who was betraying Him; for this reason He said, "Not all of you are clean."

This passage is sometimes taken as a requirement for baptism. Particularly verse 8. But Jesus washes the disciples feet.
He doesn't say you have to take a complete bath again. You just need to have your feet washed every now and then.
Sinning doesn't make you "un-saved" ( a continual, willful lifestyle of sin is different) but you still need to get right with God from time to time.

1Jn 1:9; If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Have you confessed your sins? All of them? There is a big "IF" in that verse.
Well, I don't know I confessed a lot of them when I got saved. (or for some people, they didn't even do it then).. great.
Have you done any sins since then? How about any "new" sins that you didn't confess years ago, you didn't confess them yet, because you hadn't done them yet.

When Jesus taught the disciples how to pray.. he taught them this as part of their prayer.

Luke 11:3; 'Give us each day our daily bread.
Luke 11:4; 'And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.'"


This wasn't a prayer that you just prayed once. It was a daily prayer. Luther believed this needed to be done "till our entrance into the kingdom of heaven".

.. to be continued ...
 
Loyal
Another thing that Luther saw in scripture was something called "The priesthood of all believers".

Heb 7:12; For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also.

Something changed between the new Covenant and the old Covenant... the law changed.. and it had to do with the "priesthood"

1Pet 2:5; you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
1Pet 2:9; But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God's OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

Peter said "all believers" are a chosen race, a royal priesthood". Some people believe Peter was speaking only to the Jews, but in the old Testament, only the Levites (sons of Aaron) could be priests.
Under the Roman Catholic church anyone of any race could be a priest. So either way, the RC church was breaking the scripture here.

Only priests had a "high priest". He was the priest for the priests. He was the one who went into the Holy of Holies once a year to sprinkle (sacrificed animals) blood on the mercy seat on the ark of the Covenant.
In the new Testament Jesus, Jesus says His blood is the Covenant. He was/is the lamb that was slain.

Jesus is our high priest, this can only be true... if we are indeed priests.

Heb 2:17; Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.

Jesus had to made like humans. He had to become a man "for a little while".

Heb 2:7; "YOU HAVE MADE HIM FOR A LITTLE WHILE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS; YOU HAVE CROWNED HIM WITH GLORY AND HONOR, AND HAVE APPOINTED HIM OVER THE WORKS OF YOUR HANDS;
Heb 2:9; But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone.

Heb 3:1; Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession;

I always thought the Bible mentioned 15 apostles. The original 12 (including Judas). Matthias, Paul, and Barnabas are all called apostles. But it says here Jesus is an apostle also.

Heb 4:14; Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.
Heb 4:15; For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.
Heb 5:1; For every high priest taken from among men is appointed on behalf of men in things pertaining to God, in order to offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins;
Heb 5:5; So also Christ did not glorify Himself so as to become a high priest, but He who said to Him, "YOU ARE MY SON, TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU";
Heb 5:10; being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.
Heb 6:20; where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.
Heb 7:1; For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham as he was returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him,
Heb 7:26; For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens;
Heb 8:1; Now the main point in what has been said is this: we have such a high priest, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens,
Heb 8:3; For every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices; so it is necessary that this high priest also have something to offer.
Heb 9:7; but into the second, only the high priest enters once a year, not without taking blood, which he offers for himself and for the sins of the people committed in ignorance.
Heb 9:11; But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;
Heb 9:25; nor was it that He would offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood that is not his own.
Heb 13:11; For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy place by the high priest as an offering for sin, are burned outside the camp.

So in order for Jesus to be our "high" priest, we have to qualify as priests.

This is one of the main things that separates Protestant churches from the RC church. Virtually no protestant churches have priests. There are some churches that call themselves "protestant", but they
are not generally accepted as protestant by most other protestant churches for this very reason. This would be some Lutheran ELCA churches, Episcopal churches, and I assume many Anglican/CoE churches.
I have never attended a CoE church, so I can't say for sure if they have priests or not. I've only heard second hand that some do.

Many protestant churches feel so strongly about this... they do not count Episcopal/Anglican/CoE as protestant at all... some even go so far as to say they are just as unsaved as the Roman Catholic church.

I've heard people ask... why are there so many denominations, why are there so many differences between church beliefs. In my own personal opinion... it's mostly things like this.
The Bible clearly says one thing... but certain churches continue to practice "other" things.

... to be continued ...
 
Loyal
Top Poster Of Month
As I understand it brother,

The Church of England sustains a traditional Catholic order system that includes ordained bishops, priests and deacons. The Church of England is sometimes referred to as the Anglican Church and is part of the Anglican Communion, which contains sects such as the Protestant Episcopal Church.

Vicar vs Priest

The vicar, which means temporary, is usually at a place of worship for 7 years. Vicar in the CofE is considered as the priest of a parish, receiving a salary or stipend but not tithes while priest is a religious clergyman who is trained to perform services or sacrifices at a church or temple.

Now this is where I found I had issues in the past, the CofE Creed confirms, I believe in one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, I would never say this but always missed out the RC wording. That was some 23 years ago plus. I have since raised this with along standing, very dear and much loved brother, who took it to his minister for clarification. The reply given to me was it is just a recognition, nothing more. I myself am still unable to accept this. I cannot accept attaching myself to the RCC/CC. I am however as I clearly confirm, Andy dear brother knows, part of the one true church, the ekklesia, the Body of Christ, which all born again believers are part of and linked to.

Thank you for this thread brother, I look forward to reading what ever else you are to add.

Bless you.
 
Active
As I understand it brother,

The Church of England sustains a traditional Catholic order system that includes ordained bishops, priests and deacons. The Church of England is sometimes referred to as the Anglican Church and is part of the Anglican Communion, which contains sects such as the Protestant Episcopal Church.

Vicar vs Priest

The vicar, which means temporary, is usually at a place of worship for 7 years. Vicar in the CofE is considered as the priest of a parish, receiving a salary or stipend but not tithes while priest is a religious clergyman who is trained to perform services or sacrifices at a church or temple.

Now this is where I found I had issues in the past, the CofE Creed confirms, I believe in one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, I would never say this but always missed out the RC wording. That was some 23 years ago plus. I have since raised this with along standing, very dear and much loved brother, who took it to his minister for clarification. The reply given to me was it is just a recognition, nothing more. I myself am still unable to accept this. I cannot accept attaching myself to the RCC/CC. I am however as I clearly confirm, Andy dear brother knows, part of the one true church, the ekklesia, the Body of Christ, which all born again believers are part of and linked to.

Thank you for this thread brother, I look forward to reading what ever else you are to add.

Bless you.
You got bad advice. 'Catholic' in the sense of the creed means universal. It does not mean the Roman Catholic Church.

Jesus said 'I will build my church, and the gates of help will not stand against it.' That's all the creed is affirming. You can belong to a Baptist, Lutheran or any independent tradition and say this creed in good conscience.
 
Loyal
Top Poster Of Month
I understand what you say brother, I have heard it before, but cannot accept it in my heart.

Apostolic church yes, the word catholic ties me to a universal church, but has a denominational link. I do not belong to a denomination, an institutionalised church, I belong to the ekklesia, the one true church, I am a spiritual stone, like all other born again from above believers. The body of Christ which our Lord is Head of.

The word catholic (lowercase c; is derived from Late Latin catholicus, from the Greek adjective καθολικός (katholikos), meaning "universal".But the word catholic IS NOT i. The Bible.

The first use of "Catholic" was by the church father Saint Ignatius of Antioch in his Letter to the Smyrnaeans (circa 110 AD).

I cannot tie myself to anything I feel in my heart isn't true to The Word.

I do not consider this bad advice as you suggest brother, 'catholic' is NOT in The Word, and The Word is Truth.

Shalom
 
Loyal
while priest is a religious clergyman who is trained to perform services or sacrifices at a church or temple.
This is a very good point, and the main reason Protestant churches don't have priests. I underlined the word "sacrifices" in your quote above, I hope you don't mind.

Lev 4:10; (just as it is removed from the ox of the sacrifice of peace offerings), and the priest is to offer them up in smoke on the altar of burnt offering.
Lev 4:26; 'All its fat he shall offer up in smoke on the altar as in the case of the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him in regard to his sin, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 4:31; 'Then he shall remove all its fat, just as the fat was removed from the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall offer it up in smoke on the altar for a soothing aroma to the LORD. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 4:35; 'Then he shall remove all its fat, just as the fat of the lamb is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offerings, and the priest shall offer them up in smoke on the altar, on the offerings by fire to the LORD. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him in regard to his sin which he has committed, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 17:5; "The reason is so that the sons of Israel may bring their sacrifices which they were sacrificing in the open field, that they may bring them in to the LORD, at the doorway of the tent of meeting to the priest, and sacrifice them as sacrifices of peace offerings to the LORD.
Numb 6:17; 'He shall also offer the ram for a sacrifice of peace offerings to the LORD, together with the basket of unleavened cakes; the priest shall likewise offer its grain offering and its drink offering.
Deut 18:3; "Now this shall be the priests' due from the people, from those who offer a sacrifice, either an ox or a sheep, of which they shall give to the priest the shoulder and the two cheeks and the stomach.

Priests really only existed for two reason. They were someone to confess your sins to, and they were who sacrificed animals. There were many kinds of sacrifice and offerings.
Peace offerings, sin offerings, atonement offerings, etc... I don't have time to go into all of that... but the point here is... the priest were the ones who did the sacrifices. The verses above are just a few, there are more.

So the question is.. under the new covenant... are sacrifices still needed? ...and if not, are priests still needed?

Heb 7:24; but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently.
Heb 7:25; Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

I'm not sure how churches with priests can reconcile the passage below. (Mormon churches also have priests).

Heb 9:11; But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;
Heb 9:12; and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Heb 9:13; For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh,
Heb 9:14; how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
Heb 9:15; For this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
Heb 9:16; For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it.
Heb 9:17; For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives.
Heb 9:18; Therefore even the first covenant was not inaugurated without blood.

Heb 9:25; nor was it that He would offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood that is not his own.
Heb 9:26; Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.

Heb 10:10; By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Heb 10:11; Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins;
Heb 10:12; but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD

The blood of animals didn't really pay for anyone's sins. Their blood was just a symbol of Jesus's blood. He was the true Lamb. All those (millions??) of sacrifices done for hundreds of years, for thousands of people
were just a foreshadowing of what Jesus was going to do. But When Jesus was sacrificed. It was "once for all". He didn't have to do this over and over again like the priests of the old testament.

So if this is the case... if Jesus was truly the final sacrifice to end all sacrifices... why do we need priests?

Matt 23:9; "Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.

Jesus said we only have one spiritual Father, and He isn't on Earth, He is in heaven.

... to be continued ...
 
Loyal
The word catholic (lowercase c; is derived from Late Latin catholicus, from the Greek adjective καθολικός (katholikos), meaning "universal".But the word catholic IS NOT i. The Bible.
You both make good points, and I hope this doesn't detract too much from the main purpose of this thread. I agree with Hekeran that it means "the global church" (ekklesia). Also I agree with you that
the RC church hi-jacked the word "catholic" to mean the RC church. In their minds the 'catholic' church means the "Catholic" church. (big C vs small c).
 
Loyal
Top Poster Of Month
Greetings brother,

Thanks for your balanced reply, but for me personally, I cannot accept catholic for church/ ekklesia.

1 - it is not on scripture
2 - it was translated from Latin, which is what the RCC used, Late Latin catholicus,
3 - it was circ. 100 A.D. one would have thought taking the date of some writings if important it would be in the scriptures.
4 - it was created by the RC for the RCC

Another example I quote many times is that after the joining of church and government, 300 A.D. Constantine era, the Word kuriakon appeared for church building. It is like a stick of rock with catholic written through it.

Now to accept the word catholic as universal for ekklesia, for me, puts another bolder in the way. The RCC preach they are the only one's sure to go to heaven, salvation is through the RCC. How many are actually born again from above? How many pray to God through the blessed virgin mary? The ekklesia as we know brother are the souls who have experienced rebirth, made anew, born from above. There is only one church h, one ekklesia, it is the body of saved souls, worldwide, regardless of course, language, age, sex or denomination.

I am joined to every saved soul, together we are spiritual stones, together we are but up as the body of Christ. I cannot allow myself to be connected to an organisation, here the RCC/CC, especially knowing what we do of their errors against The Word.

I believe in the Apostolic Church, I constantly suggest the church today is not like the early church and we should all look at the differences so as the be right with God. I will never say, I believe in the Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Note, RC first. NOTE RC and Apostolic

It is not in scripture brother.
 
Loyal
Top Poster Of Month
This is a very good point, and the main reason Protestant churches don't have priests. I underlined the word "sacrifices" in your quote above, I hope you don't mind.

Lev 4:10; (just as it is removed from the ox of the sacrifice of peace offerings), and the priest is to offer them up in smoke on the altar of burnt offering.
Lev 4:26; 'All its fat he shall offer up in smoke on the altar as in the case of the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him in regard to his sin, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 4:31; 'Then he shall remove all its fat, just as the fat was removed from the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall offer it up in smoke on the altar for a soothing aroma to the LORD. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 4:35; 'Then he shall remove all its fat, just as the fat of the lamb is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offerings, and the priest shall offer them up in smoke on the altar, on the offerings by fire to the LORD. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him in regard to his sin which he has committed, and he will be forgiven.
Lev 17:5; "The reason is so that the sons of Israel may bring their sacrifices which they were sacrificing in the open field, that they may bring them in to the LORD, at the doorway of the tent of meeting to the priest, and sacrifice them as sacrifices of peace offerings to the LORD.
Numb 6:17; 'He shall also offer the ram for a sacrifice of peace offerings to the LORD, together with the basket of unleavened cakes; the priest shall likewise offer its grain offering and its drink offering.
Deut 18:3; "Now this shall be the priests' due from the people, from those who offer a sacrifice, either an ox or a sheep, of which they shall give to the priest the shoulder and the two cheeks and the stomach.

Priests really only existed for two reason. They were someone to confess your sins to, and they were who sacrificed animals. There were many kinds of sacrifice and offerings.
Peace offerings, sin offerings, atonement offerings, etc... I don't have time to go into all of that... but the point here is... the priest were the ones who did the sacrifices. The verses above are just a few, there are more.

So the question is.. under the new covenant... are sacrifices still needed? ...and if not, are priests still needed?

Heb 7:24; but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently.
Heb 7:25; Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

I'm not sure how churches with priests can reconcile the passage below. (Mormon churches also have priests).

Heb 9:11; But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;
Heb 9:12; and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Heb 9:13; For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh,
Heb 9:14; how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
Heb 9:15; For this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
Heb 9:16; For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it.
Heb 9:17; For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives.
Heb 9:18; Therefore even the first covenant was not inaugurated without blood.

Heb 9:25; nor was it that He would offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood that is not his own.
Heb 9:26; Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.

Heb 10:10; By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Heb 10:11; Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins;
Heb 10:12; but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD

The blood of animals didn't really pay for anyone's sins. Their blood was just a symbol of Jesus's blood. He was the true Lamb. All those (millions??) of sacrifices done for hundreds of years, for thousands of people
were just a foreshadowing of what Jesus was going to do. But When Jesus was sacrificed. It was "once for all". He didn't have to do this over and over again like the priests of the old testament.

So if this is the case... if Jesus was truly the final sacrifice to end all sacrifices... why do we need priests?

Matt 23:9; "Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.

Jesus said we only have one spiritual Father, and He isn't on Earth, He is in heaven.

... to be continued ...

The Church if England is a very mixed bag, over the years successive arch bishops have let each place of worship, or group under the mother church, worship as they think best.

The two I have been to, and the one my dear brother and friend goes to, are very evangelical. But some are classed as,h high churches, very much like RC's. One where I used to live said on their notice board they were CofE but with RC mass and service style! The higher ones have incense etc, but there were no sacrifices in any I have been to.

Sacrifice and offerings I do not desire...

Sorry, back on track, just needed to clarify the point regarding sacrifices and the wide differences in types of worship in the CofE.
 
Loyal
One last verse about the priesthood of believers here before I jump to the next topic Luther mentioned.

Rev 1:4; John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace, from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne,
Rev 1:5; and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood—
Rev 1:6; and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

At the beginning of Revelation, John is writing to the seven churches of Asia. These were Gentile churches. Some of these churches are the churches Paul writes some of his epistles to.
These were not Jews is Jewish churches. He is writing to Gentiles. I notice in verse 6 here, Jesus has made us to be a kingdom... "priests". Gentiles are priests.
Also this letter is to the 'whole' church. Not just certain people in the church. It wasn't written to specific people in the church. Everyone in the church is a priest.

Sacrifice and offerings I do not desire...
Amen.

Well I think we've belabored this subject as much as we can for now.

....next topic coming up...
 
Loyal
If you go back to the OP, and read through the 95 items again... you will notice words like "Pope" and "Papal" decrees, at least a dozen times.

Luther did not believe one human man could be the head of "the church". Nor did he believe a human man could forgives the sins of the people in the church.
I should probably qualify that last statement. If you sinned against me personally. I could forgive you. However if you sinned against someone else... I can't forgive you because you didn't do anything to me.
Jesus can forgive men of all sins. No matter who the sin was against. The Pope cannot do this.

Many Protestant churches have "institutions". Buildings, national headquarter, offices, colleges, as well as church officers, and even in some cases the Chairman of the board, or the President, or vice President
of a specific denomination of a church. This is different from being a Pope. Most of the Protestant "institutions" I have been involved with are not controlled by one central person. This CEO or President does not
have the authority to make declarations to and for the "entire church body". Not even for their own specific denomination. These church clergy leaders usually admit they do not have to power to forgive sins of people.

In the RC church this is not the case. The Pope is the human head of the church. The Pope ( and indirectly the church ) can decide what sins to forgive or not to forgive as the case may be. The Pope can, and does
make doctrinal declarations to and for the "entire" church (in this case the entire church is the RC church).

But even this can be construed differently... for example Pope Francis said "who am I to judge" against homosexual clergymen in the church.

So in one sense he is not making a declaration for the church here, but in reality he is speaking for the entire RC church. (This has caused some division in the church to be sure)
This is just one example... it isn't just homosexuality. To be fair... some Protestant churches, such as the United Methodist church have also embraced homosexual clergy and even perform same sex marriage in the church.
But the point here is... can one human man really lead and speak for the entire church? In the old testament there were prophets, judges, and leaders in the church that spoke to the "entire" church body.
But is this how God does it now under the New covenant?

Eph 1:22; And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church,
Eph 5:23; For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.
Col 1:18 ; He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.

2Pet 1:20; But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation,
2Pet 1:21; for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.

There is a lot more to say here.... Luther's Theses was written specifically to the RC church of the 1500's. But other churches have similar offices to the Pope.
The Mormon church has the office of "The Prophet" that is the head over the church. The CoE/Anglican church has the Archbishop of Canterbury that is the head of that church.

... to be continued ...
 
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