Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Why Confession is Better Than Counseling...

 
Reason #1 - Much better Rates
Reason #2 - The Priest doesn't want to see you again
...taken from Fr. John Riccardo

35 comments:

triednotfried said...

Agreed, although when I confess I choose to go to the one who can actually forgive, not another man...

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Amen....God does the forgiving...

Also:

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. James 5:16

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Also...

And with that he breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven." (John 20:22-24)

triednotfried said...

The New Testament teaches that all believers are priests. 1 Peter 2:9 " "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." In the Old Covenant, the faithful had to approach God through the priests. The priests were mediators. BUT, this is no longer necessary. We are now suppose to approach God's throne with boldness, Hebrews 4:16 "Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" The temple veil tearing in two at Jesus' death was symbolic of the dividing wall between God and humanity being destroyed. We can approach God directly, ourselves, without the use of a human mediator. Jesus Christ is our great High Priest, and the only mediator between us and God.

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

The New Testament teaches that all believers are priests. 1 Peter 2:9 "

Amen!!!!

We are now suppose to approach God's throne with boldness,

Amen!!!

We can approach God directly, ourselves, without the use of a human mediator.

Amen!!!

Sometimes I wish that we can focus more on the areas that we agree, rather than disagree.

So, is Christ the only mediator between God and man? Yes. Are Christians mediators between God and man....Yes. Only because we share in the mediation of Christ.

If Christ was the only true mediator between God and man, what would be the use of anyone praying for anyone else? If I asked you to pray for me, and you really believed that Christ was the only mediator, you should respond with something along the lines of, "Oh. Don't you know that Christ is the only mediator between God and man. Therefore, I am not going to pray for you. Just go to Christ directly". But of course, you would not do that. You would pray for me because you share in the mediation of Christ.

Christ is our High Priest. And His mediation is unique. At the same time, He allows us to share in that mediation because we have become members of Christ, and because He has instructed us to do so...

God bless...

triednotfried said...

So you're saying to me that you can and do go to anyone for prayer? Not just a priest? (I still don't believe in that office, but we won't go there....) Why do you have confession in a box time then with only him? Do you believe that the priest can forgive your sins?

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

So you're saying to me that you can and do go to anyone for prayer? Not just a priest?

Absolutely...

Why do you have confession in a box time then with only him? Do you believe that the priest can forgive your sins?

Let's be very clear. You and I agree that only God can forgive sins. God alone has the power to forgive sins. I think the real question we both need to ask ourselves is in what way does God forgive sins? We both would agree that God forgives sins when you ask for His forgiveness. Where we may depart our ways is whether or not God has also given this ability to men. I believe He has and I believe that we can see evidence of this in scripture.

And with that he breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven." (John 20:22-24)

So before answering your question, do you think / believe that God gave the Apostles the ability to forgive sins?

(I am trying to see where we really disagree. If you do not believe that God gave the apostles to forgive sins, I would like for you to give me your interpretation of the scripture verse above. If you do agree that He did give the Apostles the ability to forgive sins, then we can move on to the next point, and see where we actually start to disagree.)

triednotfried said...

This is indeed where we disagree. In this passage, Jesus uses a Greek verb, APHIEMI, for "forgive" two times. The first time He says "If you forgive" He uses what is called and aorist active subjunctive tense. An aorist tense means an event occurred at some point in time. It would be like me saying, "I dropped a coin today." It is something that just happened. The second time Jesus uses APHIEMI, He changes the verb to a perfect passive indicative tense. This is very significant. A perfect tense means something happened somewhere in past time and the results continue into the present time. It would be like me saying, "I dropped a coin a week ago and it is still dropping." The perfect tense in combination with the passive means someone did the action on the one forgiven. Who did the forgiving in time past before the apostles did anything? God. So what I see here are two reasons why the apostles are not doing the forgiving. The sins were already forgiven in the past and they are still forgiven, and they were forgiven by God.
Jesus is saying the apostles would be declaring something that had already occurred. The apostles knew when God had forgiven a man or woman of sins. We can know this too. A man or woman is only forgiven by faith, that is, by trusting in Jesus. 1 John 5:13 tells us that we can know we have eternal life-we can know that we are going to heaven. This happens when we stop trying to do good deeds (Ephesians 2:8-9) and just simply do nothing else but trust Jesus. (1 John 3:23) to forgive all of our sins for all time (Hebrews 10:10) For a true Christian, there is no future sin that God has not already been forgiven. The disciples could tell a person their sins were forgiven, but in reality forgiveness had already been granted by God through faith in Jesus. Only God can forgive sins (Mark 2:5-9). Jesus was not giving the apostles divine authority. Jesus was allowing them to help others know that their sins were forgiven, if in fact they trusted in Jesus. The apostles were stating something that had already occurred. The Greek makes this very clear.

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Not to change the subject, I will get back to it, but....is this Sean???

This sounds like a Sean kind of response. I have never seen or heard triednotfried talk like this.

triednotfried said...

No, I assure you this is not Sean. This is me, choosing to study and learn....and dig deep for a full understanding of the gospel. I find it very beneficial and it is available for anyone who wants to learn. But I will take that as a compliment, thank you. =)

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Well you are welcome for the compliment. Now, curiosity has got me, where did you read or study this?

Author? book? or did you just come to the conclusion after reading the scripture in it's original Greek....

I guess, we part ways pretty early. You believe that the Apostles were given the ability to declare someone as being forgiven after their sins have already been forgiven. I believe that God uses the Apostles as an instrument "in persona Christi" to forgive sins.

Hmmm.....what to do?

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried...

Nevermind...i found it.

http://www.neverthirsty.org/pp/corner/read/r00027.html

In the future, please cite your references...

I have to give this some thought. I don't have an answer for it right now, but it does deserve an answer, and I want to take time with it.

Thanks and God bless...

triednotfried said...

There are many references that I would be glad to site Carlus...truly. But what difference would it make? You have it there in black and white, did you read it? There is absolutely nothing that you can argue with what I said...nothing. Still you choose to stick to your guns. You are right, we are parting ways early on this one. if you don't believe the original language, you won't believe anything.

If you would like more references, please let me know, I have a ton...

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Like I said, I am going to have to consider the evidence. I don't know enough about researching in the Greek. I would like to look at conflicting arguments if there are any and take it from there.

I think that is the most appropriate thing to do.

God bless...

triednotfried said...

That is why I gave that. This is what I am currently studying. I think it is extremely important when you come to a difficult passage such as the one you cited to go back to the original language. If you go to my site, I actually listed the 5 basic things I use to study out the scriptures. I read alot of this stuff daily, I think it is my responsibility to do so when representing God's Word. I am currently studying Greek, and when I become literate enough, I will begin Hebrew. I would like also see the references for all of the arguments you find while you are studying this out. Thanks.

born4battle said...

If private confession to a man instead of God was a scriptural principle/doctrine those would be nice thoughts, but something with no basis in scripture and instituted over a thousand years after the resurrection by the 'church', and taught as necessary for salvation itself might just be heresy.

"“It is through the sacrament of Penance that the baptized can be reconciled with God and with the Church…This sacrament of Penance is necessary for salvation for those who have fallen after Baptism, just as Baptism is necessary for salvation for those who have not yet been reborn.” - Catechism. Para. 980

Rome teaches in her Catechism,
“Now the minister, by reason of the sacerdotal consecration which he has received, is truly made like to the high priest and possesses the authority to act in the power and place of the person of Christ himself (virtute ac persona ipsuis Christi). Christ is the source of all priesthood: the priest of the old law was a figure of Christ, and the priest of the
new law acts in the person of Christ.” - Catechism, Para. 1548

The RC priesthood is nowhere taught in NT scripture. Christ is the only High Priest and the Righteous Judge of all mankind, not any man. Nowhere in NT scripture do we find reference to "old law" and "new law". We find in scripture that the law kills, but grace through faith saves.

It appears to me that the RC priesthood, as well as similar Protestant 'priesthoods' (if there are any), in which judicial power for the forgiveness of sins is granted to a man, are all heretical. Only God can forgive sins.

The best any person can do in the area of forgiveness of sins is to proclaim that forgiveness having come through Christ and the that if a person truly repents (not 'does' penance) and believes in Christ for forgiveness, the Bible says he/she is forgiven. No man can 'declare' with 'judicial authority' that another person's sins are forgiven.

The 'sacrament' of confession and 'pennance' to a man in a box is nowhere taught in scripture, and spits in the face of the One who cried out "It is finished." when He died for the sins fo His people.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

I don't have too much time right now to respond to everything that you said, however, I will take a moment to respond to the first error that I see...

but something with no basis in scripture and instituted over a thousand years after the resurrection by the 'church'

I am curious on what basis are you making this assumption? You believe that the Sacrament of Reconciliation (as it is now called) was instituted over 1,000 years after the resurrection of Christ? This is wrong...

"Father who knowest the hearts of all grant upon this Thy servant whom Thou hast chosen for the episcopate to feed Thy holy flock and serve as Thine high priest, that he may minister blamelessly by night and day, that he may unceasingly behold and appropriate Thy countenance and offer to Thee the gifts of Thy holy Church. And that by the high priestly Spirit he may have authority to forgive sins..." Hippolytus, Apostolic Tradition, 3 (A.D. 215).

Notice that this is recorded in the year 215 A.D.

Yet one will not be wrong in asserting that they then also received some spiritual power and grace; not so as to raise the dead, or to work miracles, but so as to remit sins. For the gifts of the Spirit are of different kinds; wherefore He added, "Whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them," showing what kind of power He was giving. (Homily 86, John Chrysostom)

St. John Chrysostom was born in 347 and died circa 400. Here, he is evidently supporting God forgiving the sins of others through the use of the pristhood. Describing, if you will, the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

To suggest that this was instituted by the Church over, 1000 years after the death and resurrection of Christ, is completely inaccurate. Using the above quotes, I have shown that confession before the priest has been with God's Church well before the time that you are suggesting. Wouldn't you agree?

God bless...

born4battle said...

the over 1,000 after Christ bit was the private confessional. I'm sure you know that. It's the entire must confess sins to a man (priest or otherwise) that stinks of heresy and is spitting in the face of the finished work of Christ. I know how you completely ignored the heart ofa the matter - the resurrection of a priesthood and 'laws' required for salvation identical with the OT system but wearing 'Christian' garb.

It doesn't m ake any difference when the alleged sacrement of confessing before a priest as necessary for salvation first became doctrine for the RCC. It was heresy ghen and is heresy now.

If you prefer bondage to freedom In Christ - that is your choice.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

the over 1,000 after Christ bit was the private confessional.

So you do admit the confessing sins to a priest existed well before 1000 years after the resurrection of Christ? Your earlier statement makes one think that you believe that this was a recent invention of the Catholic Church, when instead, it has been part of the Christian faith from early beginnings. To be exact, your words were:

...instituted over a thousand years after the resurrection by the 'church',

From which I have shown historical record of people sharing this belief since the 200's. Instituted over a thousand years after the resurrection..... I don't think so, and neither does history.

I will get to your other points later.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

To your second point of your original comment:

The RC priesthood is nowhere taught in NT scripture.

Born and raised a Protestant, I similarly believed this to be the case as well. While it is true that we are all priests, prophet and king, we are only so because we share in a mystical way in the Priesthood character of Christ.

Here is an article titled, Why We Have a Ministerial Priesthood, that I happened upon from a Protestant Minister, now Catholic Apologist about how he came to the understanding of seeing the priesthood in Scripture.

Tim Staples does a fine job of representing the Catholic faith of a Ministerial Priesthood supported by Scripture. Tim had no intention of becoming Catholic. He even shared a lot of the same misinformation that you have about our Church. I would humbly request that you read the article and see that although you may not agree with what it says, there is definitely evidence in Scripture that would support a ministerial priesthood.

God bless.

born4battle said...

A former Catholic priest (over 20 years) offers:

"In the early 1970s we who gloried in being priests were shocked to read the word of one of our best Roman Catholic Scripture scholars, Raymond E. Brown:

When we move from the Old Testament to the New Testament, it is striking that while there are pagan priests and Jewish priests on the scene, no individual Christian is ever specifically identified as a priest. The Epistle to the Hebrews speaks of the high priesthood of Jesus by comparing his death and entry into heaven with the actions of the Jewish high priest who went into the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle once a year with a offering for himself and for the sins of his people (Hebrews 9:6-7).

But it is noteworthy that the author of Hebrews does not associate the priesthood of Jesus with the Eucharist or the Last Supper; neither does he suggest that other Christians are priests in the likeness of Jesus. In fact, the once-for-all atmosphere that surrounds the priesthood of Jesus in Hebrews 10:12-14, has been offered as an explanation of why there are no Christian priests in the New Testament period.1

Later in the same chapter Brown argues for a priesthood like that of the Levitical class in the Old Testament. He makes his case for the development of such a doctrine by means of tradition. Even those of us who knew very little of the Bible knew that the Pharisees counted tradition superior to the clear Word of God. Brown did more to demolish the conviction that we were indeed priests than to ease our troubled minds.

Now I see that what Brown stated in the section quoted is biblically and absolutely true. Other than the royal priesthood, which applies to all true believers in Christ, there is no office of priesthood in the New Testament. Rather, as Hebrews states so clearly of the Old Testament priests, "And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death: But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them" (Hebrews 7:23-25) "Unchangeable priesthood" means just that in the Greek: aparabatos means "untransferable". The reason it cannot be transferred to men is that its essence is Christ's own, ..who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens" (verse 26)"

born4battle said...

You don't need to strain your brain with my other points, since you seem to miss them anyway (or ignore them).

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

A former Catholic priest (over 20 years) offers:

In the future, please cite your references. I did find it on a website, but it would be helpful if I knew where you copied and pasted an article from.

Just for clarification's sake, Raymond Brown is a Catholic Scholar, while Richard Bennett, the former priest now Fundamentalist is the one who wrote this statement.

As far as I can tell, Raymond Brown died a faithful Catholic. He seems to have a great reputation in the Catholic Community. I, at least, have not found anything that would suggest otherwise.

Richard Bennet, the former priest, is using a quote from Raymond Brown's book - which book, I cannot find - that would suggest that the priesthood is nowhere to be found, especially in the Book of Hebrews.

So, just so I understand your position, do you think that there is no priesthood except for Jesus? Do you believe that every Christian is a priest, and there are no differences? What is your position in the matter?

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

You don't need to strain your brain with my other points, since you seem to miss them anyway (or ignore them).

These are the type of comments that seems to show your true motiviations. If you are interested in "sharing the Gospel with me", how receptive do you think that I will be with insults.

Let me help you with your evangelistic skills...If you want to bring someone to Christ, one of the first steps is not to insult their intelligence.

God bless...

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

Okay. Let me take something back. It would appear that not everyone thought so highly of Fr. Raymond Brown. Here in this article, we see a Catholic expressing his views regarding Fr. Raymond Brown.

I don't have any opinion of him. I have not had a chance to read his work, and I never met the guy. However, at the same time, I do recognize that he does not speak for the entire Catholic Church.

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Regarding the 'aphiemi' Greek word, I did find an interesting dialogue that is happening on Catholic Answers Forums. Someone brought up this Greek word and how it is mistranslated and misunderstood today. Another poster commented on it...someone who is much more knowledgeable than I of Greek.

You can find the post and response at the following link:

http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?p=3776151&highlight=aphiemi#post3776151

God bless...

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried.

Let's try that again..... Click this

triednotfried said...

Shaking the dust off...Carlus, I presented to you the most explicit and accurate translation of that verse that I could find, and you gave me that? Do you ever even consider that you may possibly be wrong? That what we are trying to do is show you some truth about God's Word? This is just amazing to me, your blinders are just too thick...I have to walk away. I will be praying for you, and that in your endeavors to find truth, God gives you the strength to see it.

Carlus Henry said...

triednotfried,

Carlus, I presented to you the most explicit and accurate translation of that verse that I could find, and you gave me that?

I don't understand what makes you think the the evidence of what you have shown in any way is more accurate than the evidence of what I have shown.

As a matter of fact, I think, if anything, if you really want to understand what the Greeks really thought about the passage, why not go to the Christians at the time who spoke Greek and were much more familiar with the culture than anyone this day and age can ever claim to be....and yes, I am talking about the Early Church.

Do you ever even consider that you may possibly be wrong? That what we are trying to do is show you some truth about God's Word?

Of course I have considered that I may be wrong. That is what caused me to join the Catholic Church to begin with.

Have you ever considered that you may be wrong? That instead of looking at the scholars of today, that it may be worthwhile to know and understand what the Christians of the earliest centuries thought and believed? Don't the opinions of those who have died for the faith, just so that you and I can worship Jesus Christ, worthy of study and understanding?

I have to walk away. I will be praying for you, and that in your endeavors to find truth, God gives you the strength to see it.

Amen!!! I will be praying for you in the same fashion. Not that he will lead you to the Truth of John Calvin, or Martin Luther or even the failed attempts of many noble Christians of the past who have tried to understand Scripture. Instead, I will pray that you will find God's Truth. That He will speak to your heart and call you to a closer relationship with Him.

God bless...

Carlus Henry said...

This is from born4battle....

Well Carlus, you do miss or ignore the root issues at stake here and tend to pick on something you can build a straw man out of.

I termed your religion heretical and merely reinventing OT law that CANNOT save with 'Christian' trappings! That is exactly what the RCC has done and now holds millions in bondage to the Church, with their very intellects surrendered to Rome.

Somehow they convinced you that you cannot think for yourself and must only discuss EVERYTNIHG from the RCC perspective/teachings/man made traditions that Christ hated.

So much for that. I'm done here.....

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

I termed your religion heretical and merely reinventing OT law that CANNOT save with 'Christian' trappings! That is exactly what the RCC has done and now holds millions in bondage to the Church, with their very intellects surrendered to Rome.

Are you still beating this same old tired drum? There is absolutely no reason to think that once you join the Catholic Church, you stop thinking. It is just plain ridiculous. Now there are some who do choose to stop thinking, but I think that we can both agree that these individuals cross denominational boundaries.

Somehow they convinced you that you cannot think for yourself

There you go again....

and must only discuss EVERYTNIHG from the RCC perspective/teachings

Since we were discussing the Sacrament of Confession, something that I hold to be true and instituted by Christ, what other perspective did you expect me to come from? The Catholic perspective, is my perspective because I agree with her.

It is like me saying, "There you go again, why do you always have to take a Protestant view point?".

man made traditions that Christ hated.

This is the best one. If the traditions are man-made, then I would agree, they are not necessary. However, if the traditions that you accuse of being man-made were instituted by Christ Himself...why wouldn't I be a part of it? Why wouldn't you?

So much for that. I'm done here.....

God bless you on your journey....

born4battle said...

You've got to be kidding. I have NEVER claimed a 'Protestant' point of view. I have over and over and over again come straight from scripture. Just because you surrendered your intellect to Rome doesn't mean non-Catholics, as you love to say, have given over to a denomination, or Calvin, or Luther, or anyone else.

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

Hey...welcome back.

I have over and over and over again come straight from scripture. Just because you surrendered your intellect to Rome doesn't mean non-Catholics, as you love to say, have given over to a denomination, or Calvin, or Luther, or anyone else.

So it sounds like your preference would be to just go where Scripture is leading you. This would mean that you and your interpretation of Scripture really has the final say of authority regarding what you believe and your faith? Regardless of what other people may have thought or believed, you really have the ultimate authority of determining what is orthodox and what is not. Is that accurate?

God bless...

Carlus Henry said...

born4battle,

non-Catholics, as you love to say,

Just a little background. When I was a Non Catholic, I sometimes felt a little insulted with the title of Protestant. I never really felt as though I was Protesting anything. Because of this, that is why now, as a Catholic, I try to use the term Non-Catholic Christian as oppose to Protestant...although every now and then the term Protestant does slip in....

God bless...

Lumen Fidei said...

Seems to me that triednotfried's purported superior knowledge in regard to the Greek of John 20:23 was easily refuted by Carlus Henry's reference early on:

Source: http://www.catholic.com/magazine/articles/the-priesthood-is-both-ministerial-and-universal

Tim Staples writes:

In Scripture, we see our Lord definitively choosing and sending apostles to act as priests, or "mediators between God and men." For example, after the Resurrection, our Lord appears to the apostles and says to them: "‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’" (Jn 20:21-23).
Here, Jesus communicated the power to forgive and retain sins—just as he himself had done—to the apostles. This is a priestly ministry (see also Lv 19:21-22).

Tense Matters
Some Protestant scholars attempt to evade the rather obvious meaning here by claiming the verbs, "are forgiven" and "are retained" indicate that when Jesus said, "If you forgive . . . they are forgiven," he actually meant whoever’s sins they forgive would have already been forgiven. And even more, they would not have been forgiven through the ministry of the apostle, but by God apart from the apostle. Because "the first verbs in the two clauses are aorists, which imply the action of an instant; [and] the second verbs are perfects," one scholar claims that these verbs "imply an abiding state that began before the action of the first verbs" (Merrill C. Tenney, The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, 9:193).

Dr. Tenney’s argument is weak. First, kratete, "you retain," is present—not aorist—tense, indicating that the apostle’s authority to "retain" is ongoing. This fact alone reveals Tenney’s argument to be hollow. But his argument also does not sufficiently acknowledge that these two verbs, "you forgive" and "you retain," in these protases (conditional clauses) are subjunctives contained within indefinite relative clauses. It is true the aorist subjunctive here with regard to whoever sins you forgive would indicate an instant action, but the subjunctive mood within an indefinite relative clause expresses uncertainty or potentiality with regard to the subject. While this is not a proper future tense, it does indicate the future in the sense of something that is possible. This would seem to indicate a conditional thought that must be fulfilled before the apodosis (concluding clause) "are forgiven" could be fulfilled. In short, before the definite event of these sins being forgiven can come about—indicated by the perfect tense—another merely possible event must occur; namely, the apostle must forgive those sins.

The text of John 20 is really quite plain. It tells us when the sins spoken of are forgiven: when the apostles forgive them. This is not to say the apostles accomplish this by their own power. Jesus "breathed on them" and gave them the power of the Holy Spirit to forgive sins. But the apostles are revealed to be the instruments of God’s forgiveness.




Instead of addressing this, triednotfried just grew increasingly insulting. Thank you Carlos Henry. You had love on your side of the debate, and as it turns out, truth.