Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Wacky Episcopalians

...via Midwest Conservative Journal. Remember the motto "No Creed but Christ"?....Here's the latest permutation courtesy of Episcopagans. They earn that name. Seriously.
From Letters to the Editor:

The Rev. John Beverley Butcher ("Creeds are lacking") is not alone in sensing the creed's complete exclusion of Jesus' life and ministry, mentioning only his birth and death and nothing in between. In the flow of the liturgy, Scripture, passing the peace, prayers of the people, the sermon and the Eucharist, Jesus Christ's ministry and gospel are present. The creed, instituted by Roman decree more than three centuries after the Resurrection, leaves out both entirely. The Council of Nicea's purpose was to institutionalize Roman power and authority.
We are Episcopalians and have been open to the Holy Spirit to help us in the evolution of our worship from the beginning. In the Nag Hammadi discoveries, we are now fortunate to have the gospels of Thomas, Philip and Mary Magdalene to read. None of the four original Gospels nor these new findings contain the creed.

Women also have sensed the irony of referring to the Holy Spirit as "he" when it is a feminine word in both Hebrew and Greek and would best be translated as "she." Patriarchal language is problematic in a church with a woman presiding bishop.
The Council of Nicea was hegemonic, got that? So you thought it was in answer to some heresy, boy, are you behind the times. More...
Grateful thanks to the Rev. John B. Butcher's ("Creeds Are Lacking" comments. The creeds are metaphysical abstract statements, probably relevant in the fourth century to philosophical arguing, but not understandable for Christian living or to anything Jesus lived and taught. What really does any of that speculative conjecture loved by theologians mean to the average person, those to whom Jesus ministered then and now?

If the creeds are sacrosanct and cannot be replaced, could an alternative be given as an option? Jesus' summary of the law to love God and love your neighbor is mentioned several times in Scripture, the Old and New Testaments. Why isn't that our creed, easily understood and a guide for living? It also seems to me to be truly the Great Commission from Jesus, not Matthew 28:19, which is mentioned only once and never was called the great commission by Jesus; that probably was the label put on by some Bible scholar when the Bible was able to be printed.
Truly, I'm dazzled by such deep theological thinking. Just in case you were interested in what spurred such incisive treatises, take note:
CREEDS ARE LACKING
Perhaps you have noticed that the creeds speak of the birth of Jesus and then of his death. There is no mention of the life of Jesus, no mention of the teachings of Jesus, no mention of the healing power of Jesus.

The heart of the gospel is missing. The creeds are defective and need to be taken out of service. Instead, let us proclaim clearly the gospel of the Resurrected Jesus, "The seed of true humanity is within you. Follow it!" Gospel of Mary (Magdalene) 4:5.

The Rev. John Beverley Butcher
Pescadero, California
Gospel of Mary Magdalene...you know, trumps all of Scripture handed down to us by the patriarchal, power-hungry, and oppressive Catholic Church so we have a right to claim our own authority. Follow it!

4 comments:

Fr. Ryan said...

I love crazy people - too much sanity isn't good for the soul... An absolute whacko introduces a little levity into the current status of the Church from time to time. Thanks for the not Argent!

DimBulb said...

Women also have sensed the irony of referring to the Holy Spirit as "he" when it is a feminine word in both Hebrew and Greek and would best be translated as "she."

Poor Jesus, being neither a woman or an Episcopagan he didn't pick up on that: The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name-He will teach you everything..."

Apparently, St John the Evangelist was a stooge of Rome.

DimBulb said...

The creeds are metaphysical abstract statements, probably relevant in the fourth century to philosophical arguing, but not understandable for Christian living or to anything Jesus lived and taught. What really does any of that speculative conjecture loved by theologians mean to the average person, those to whom Jesus ministered then and now?

I'm reminded of something Luther wrote:

"Christ has two natures: what does that have to do with me? If he bears the name of Christ, magnificent and consoling as it is, it is because of the ministry and the task he took upon himself; that is what gives him the name. That he is by nature both man and God, this is something for himself. But that he consecrated his ministry and poured out his love to become my savior and my redeemer, that is where I find my consolation and my good...To believe in Christ does not mean that Christ is a person who is both god and man, for that is of no help to anybody. It means that this person is Christ, that for our sake he came forth from the Father and descended into the world...It is from this office that he derives his name"

This statment, which can't be divorced from Luther's overall thought, has been so divorced by some of the more prominent theological nut-jobs liberal Protestantism has ever produce. Ritschl and Harnack invoked it in their attempt to establish a dogmaless Christianity. And Feuerbach used it to it to support his anthrpocentrism, and the idea that the only divinity was man.

Father Pierre Rousselot highlights the absurdity:

"Christ has two natures: what is that to me?-But the substantial reparation of humanity lies in that very fact. But this joining of the divine and the human touches and heals what is most profound and most inalienable in me, my very nature. Christ has two natures: what is that to me? But every living intelligence is directly, personally, profoundly involved in this central fact of the history of being, which brings divinization to creatures. At the moment that affects the depth of being itself, it affects the depths of my own being."

frival said...

It is amazing, the intellectual lengths people will go in order to be able to discover that they are, indeed, already living a perfectly Christian life. Just as dogs resemble their owners (or so it's said) personal creeds resemble the pre-existing state of their creators.