Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Click here to go to beginning of book review
But we know that even the demons can say that Jesus is Lord... for the demons of Hell give Our Lord Jesus accolade in Saint Luke's Gospel, Chapter 4, verse 33-34:
And in the synagogue there was a man which had a spirit of an unclean devil, and cried out with a loud voice, saying Let us alone, what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art; The Holy One of God.
So we see here it is possible to say the name of Jesus, know and acknowledge His Divinity... but reject him nevertheless.
This chapter in Davies book contains so many variations of false teachings about the Eucharist that it is not surprising that the protestant revolters fought vigorously with each other about what they DID believe regarding communion at their "services". The only thing the revolutionaries COULD agree on was their common hatred for any sign or language in the prayers of their new mass which would hint at the idea of sacrifice, propitiation, atonement or remedy for sin.
This rewording of the prayers of the protestant Mass at the time afforded a very comfortable Christianity for the new members of the rebellious church. For if nothing was lacking after the crucifixion and resurrection of Our Blessed Lord... then personal conversion was really only a matter of showing up at Sunday service (still, at that time called Mass by many)... and mimicking verbal acceptance of Christ. Thus... pretty quickly (within a generation or two), we see a dying off of the ascetic practices of Christianity and a corresponding demographic implosion of the Catholic faith.
This transformation of Catholic culture in those days... is very nearly identical to the changes in Catholic culture of modern times from the 1960's until the present day... with the corresponding demographic implosion of sacramental marriages, infant baptisms, ordinations, the disuse of the holy sacrament of confession and increase in sacrilegious reception of holy communion. The last of these greatly exacerbated by the widespread acceptance and use of contraception among Catholics... and it's corresponding negative impact on divorce rate, infidelity, promiscuity, teen pregnancy, venereal disease and the 'final solution' of modernism which is of course, abortion and euthanasia.
The only difference between then and now, is that the reformation was a disorientation intentionally fostered by a force directed from outside the Church toward the heart of the Church (the Mass). The liturgical revolution of the sixties, contrastingly, was approved by many at the highest levels of ecclesiastical authority in the Roman Church. Instead of physical force... the enemies of Christ used the very authority of the institutions and offices in the Church to do their damage. And while the resulting liturgy remains valid... it's cultural impact upon the Catholic man is not insignificant. This is not a failure of the guarantee of infallibility... for no direct heresy was initially committed in the alteration of the Mass. Rather... it is a silencing of certain themes and theological realities which rob the man in the pew slowly. This spiritual malnutrition then opens the door for innovations and novelties to creep in... with such variation and frequency that the even the most conscientious bishop can barely control and reorient us back to a theology which is incarnational and which is sacrificial in nature.
More will be said about what Protestants believe in their innovations regarding the Eucharist in my next installment.