Who is the Church?

Discussion in 'Church History' started by Traditionalist, Dec 20, 2018.

  1. Traditionalist

    Traditionalist New Member

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    I have been wondering recently who exactly is the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church? Coming from the Roman Catholic tradition, they claim to be the one church and everyone else is not. Well, they say if you are baptised, you are in the church but not fully. So, I was wondering which churches have the marks of THE Church.

    Is it all people who have been validly baptised?

    I apologise if this post isn't supposed to go in here. I didn't know if I should put it in here or in the Theology section.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2018
  2. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    It is not the first time this question has been raised. It may well have been the question attending the Council of Jerusalem, The first Council of Constantinople, and the First Council of Constantinople.

    The New Testament seems to suggest it was the body of those who following in THE WAY of Jesus. This ultimately leads one to an understanding of a Christian as one who
    • Believes
    • Belongs
    • Behaves
    Attending to this come a number of other matters which would include, Baptism, Eucharist, Nicene Creed, Scripture, and our connection to the stream of faith of the Apostolic Church.

    For us as Anglicans we have pretty much concluded that this is embraced in the terms of the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral.
    • Scripture - Old and New Testaments
    • Tradition - Historic Creeds
    • Sacraments - Dominical
    • Historic Episcopate.
    ChicagoLambethQuadrilateral.jpg
     
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  3. Greg Gordon

    Greg Gordon New Member

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    Great answer. I would just humbly also submit that our being the Church is part of the mystical union with Christ which those outside of historical connection with the Church can still be valid. Saul was one like this but then the Lord graciously opened the doors for him to be connected to the historic Church and Apostles. Though he received the Gospel first by revelation of Jesus Christ.
     
  4. Moses

    Moses Member

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    In Eucharist, Bishop, Church, Metropolitan Zizioulas points out that Paul consistently refers to the eucharistic assembly as the church, to multiple Eucharistic assemblies as the churches, and to Christians in general as the saints. Essentially, communion with Christ is what makes the Church the body of Christ. Absent that, we're just the body of Christians.

    The idea of the Church as a worldwide organization that each diocese forms just a part of, seems to have come much later.
     
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  5. Ananias

    Ananias Member Anglican

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    There is the "invisible church" which is the body of God's elect, known only to him, which is different from the "visible church", the institution which encompasses the congregation where the gospel is preached and the sacraments are administered. This is a Reformed notion, and doesn't map all that well onto the concept of a "catholic" (i.e., universal) church.

    I usually say that the "catholic" church is the group of people who, at least, affirm the Nicene Creed 0f 325 (without the filioque). This is why I would count a Roman Catholic as part of the "catholic" church but not a Mormon or a Jehovah's Witness, for example.