Posted by: oldbelieving | June 23, 2009

Roman Catholicism = chiliasm?

This is something I have been thinking about for a while, and I’d like to get some comments on it, to see if ya’ll think it accurately represents an Orthodox stance.

In my opinion the Papal stance of the Roman Catholic Church makes it chiliastic. Chiliasm is the heresy that states that Christ will establish a literal 1000 year kingdom here on earth in the endtimes. For the Orthodox this is heretical — Christ said His Kingdom is not of this world — the 1000 years is symbolic of the Church age — Christ reigns here and now through His Body –the Church — and this reign will continue seamlessly in the age to come. Thus in the Creed we affirm “And He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead, Whose Kingdom shall have no end.” Thus we see that Christ’s Kindgom is the Church which awaits its eschatalogical fulfillment as the Heavenly Jerusalem. In Hebrews 12 we see that we have already come to the unshakeable mountain surrounded by God, His angels, and His Saints, but the fulfillment of the Kingdom is still to come.  In Orthodoxy the Church exists wherever there is a canonical bishop serving the Eucharist to his flock, regardless of geographical location. The Church exists within each one of us and in the communion shared between all believers and with God. Constantinople or Antioch or Jerusalem or Moscow or absolutely any See could fall away from the Church (God forbid) and the Church would continue because She is ultimately not of this earth and thus no geographical location is of necessity to the Church. The grace of infallibility belongs to the entire Church spread throughout the entire world, and Christ has promised that this Church would prevail against the gates of Hades.

However, the Roman Catholic Church has taken the grace of infallibility away from the Church body and placed it in the office of one man — the Pope of Rome — who they believe to be the Supreme Pontiff of the Church. Thus, in effect, every Cathlolic bishop is a mere auxiliary bishop, acting on the Pope’s behalf  — and in effect, the Pope IS the Church. Should the line of Popes ever somehow be disrupted then the infallibility would be gone from the Church and thus the gates of Hades will have prevailed (of course, the Orthodox believe they already have prevailed against Rome). Thus, Christ’s Kindgom, the Church, according to the Roman Cathlolic model, is geographically tied to Rome — it is of this earth. Without the Pope and his See in Rome there can be no Catholic Church. And if the Papacy moves for a time to Avignon, or anywhere else, then the geographical tie simply moves with him. Basically, the Church is tied to wherever the cathedra of the Pope is placed. Christ’s Kingdom is truly of this earth if Catholicism be true.

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Responses

  1. So…Papism is Origenistic (absolute divine simplicity), Gnostic (Filioque), Nestorian (created grace), Monophysite (transubstantiation), and now chiliastic?

    What next? Pre-Christian Roman (ecumenism)?

    😉

  2. Lord have mercy!

  3. Appreciate you sharing, great blog post.Thanks Again. Really Cool. cedfcdkffabd


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