Join Michael Patton, Tim Kimberley, JJ Seid and Sam Storms as they continue their series on Roman Catholicism by speaking about Authority.


    8 replies to "Theology Unplugged: Roman Catholicism – Part 3 – Authority"

    • Irene

      It’s worth pointing out that in Catholicism, the Magisterium doesn’t view itself as self-appointed. Rather, Catholics believe the Magisterium has been entrusted with special power by Jesus, as a steward of the Gospel. So the Magisterium is the servant of the Word, not vice versa.
      Yes, many theological debates come down to “says who?”, but many Catholics are willing and able to, for the sake of discussion, limit arguments to Scripture, since of course, no Catholic doctrine is contradicted by Scripture. Those debates can be very enlightening, especially for the Protestant (;

    • Irene

      This isn’t about Cath. vs Prot…..it’s about Chesterton. I heard one of you mention you like him. This poem is one of my all time favorites—it’s got a Christmas theme and a deep message.
      I bet there are a lot more of your subscribers who would like it, too. It’s something we can all appreciate, Catholic or Protestant. (:


      “There fared a mother driven forth…”

    • Steve Martin

      “…no Catholic doctrine is contradicted by Scripture.”

      Somebody forgot to tell Luther. Who was a monk amongst monks, and who basically had the entire Bible memorized.

    • Irene

      I know……..too bad it took over a millenia of hand copying before such an intelligent man actually read it.

    • Robert

      I agree with what Don said last week in regards to the current series..

      “I am sensing an attitude that does not grasp the importance for Catholics to flee a works based salvation.”

      First off, let me say I was raised in a strong Catholic home. However, I am now a practicing protestant/evangelical believer. My knowledge and understanding of the Roman system is fairly good, experiencially more so than doctrinally. It has developed slowly over the past several years and is still ‘in utero,’ that being said, please bear paitiently with me..

      My primary concern is that if one truly believes and adheres to the Roman Catholic view on justification and salvation (as defined by the church, their councils and the catechism) then they are not truly saved. I understand that is a strong statement but the fact is that the heart of their theology lies in direct contradicition with the clear and historical teachings of the scriptures. Justification by faith alone is one of the most basic and important tenants of true salvation and the Biblical gospel.

      I really the series has yet to discuss this issue in particular, but the lack of urgency on the part of the participants of series broadcasts so far concerns me. To act in a semi-casual manner towards these issues are to do a disservice to those who are lost. Now, I am not saying that every single Catholic is lost, for I believe and know that there are some within the system that do not hold to the church’s teachings but rather believe in salvation as defined by the scriptures. However, at that point they would cease to be true “Catholics.”

      I would highly recommend that listeners search out John MacArthur’s series on Catholicism. While dogmatic in his approach, he uses their own literature to demostrate error as directly compared to the scriptures. Also see any of RC Sproul’s material, especially as related to church history and ‘authority.’

      Please carefully consider this. Keep up the great broadcasts,…

    • Gary Simmons

      So, if God has never inspired an infallible statement, how could there be infallible statements written down? It ALL starts orally.

      Is Revelation progressive? If God still speaks to Christians today, how could one say that speaking infallibly died off with the apostles’ generation?

      If Revelation *is* progressive, which is sort of presupposed in having the NT supercede the OT in the Protestant paradigm, why would/should we be surprised about the idea that the modern church functions as a trump to the unwritten tradition which functions as a trump to the written tradition?

      The newer clarifies and deepens the older, yet the older constrains the newer. For those of you who are continuationists, isn’t this logically necessary? If God could inspire someone to speak infallibly in a prior time, and all the spiritual gifts work today just as they did in the first century.

      Sam and JJ: I won’t bother quoting the Statement of Faith here, but it does mention the gifts continuing today for the purpose of effective ministry. If nobody today can speak authoritatively to a new problem just as Peter or Paul did, then that’s a pretty serious spiritual gift that’s been discontinued.

      So then, if the gifts do continue today, why would it be utterly unthinkable that someone may on very rare occasion utter something that may be declared infallible? I think the feasibility of the concept is contingent upon whether or not one accepts the apostolic succession as genuine, which means we’re barking up the wrong tree, but we need to look downward to the root instead, if that makes sense.

      It might be most charitable to view the three Catholic authorities mentioned as concentric circles, with Scripture as the innermost and unwritten tradition as the middle circle. We today face some issues that were not faced before, so of course the living church in some sense is broader than either the written or unwritten tradition. Isn’t that logically necessary?

    • Gary Simmons

      I’m not exactly fluent in HTML, but I think it just said that it couldn’t find the “edit comment” button. And lo and behold, I am unable to edit that comment.

    • Rob

      How can you have a three-legged stool where one leg is more important than another? The stool will fall. If the catholic position is that there are three legs then their meaning is that they are each equal. You’ve taken the analogy and distorted it by saying that catholics believe that authority trumps scripture.

      Great podcast, good research and understanding being demonstrated. I think each of you will become catholic someday because you seek the fullness of the truth. We all need to come together as Christians. Keep seeking, keep spreading the truth, I’ll listen to more of this series. Thanks!

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