Tag Archives: Catholic Church

Papal Infallibility: The Gospel Truth (Matthew 16:19 and Matthew 18:18)

Holy Spirit Saint Peter Window

Jesus is uncharacteristically aggressive, as is the Holy Spirit, in Matthew 16:19 and Matthew 18:18, at least in our perception, for we are so weak and frightened, at least I am. But the more I admit to my darkness, the more I love how Jesus and the Holy Spirit deal with our otherwise unredeemable and unsavable circumstances in this world. So, let me also be uncharacteristically aggressive in my commentary. Perhaps Catholics with a self-referential ax to grind, perhaps some of our Orthodox friends and non-Catholic Christians will be offended. That’s not necessarily a bad thing at all. For those who have read some of this before in these pages, know that I have added an extra bit of aggressiveness for your benefit. So, let’s be pedantic about it:

Matthew 16:19 — “Whatever you may bind at any given time (second person singular subjunctive aorist active) upon the earth will (third person singular indicative future middle) already have been made to be perfectly standing in that way (nominative neuter singular participle perfect passive) in the heavens.”

What do the verbs mean in this context?

Second person singular subjunctive aorist active –

  • The second person singular refers to Peter alone, not to all, not even the other Apostles: Peter alone.
  • The subjunctive here is not so much a kind of conditional or wishfulness, but rather depicts the state of actually choosing an option; from the perspective of the actor, there is freedom to the choice: “Whatever you may bind at any give time.”
  • The aorist time frame, whatever delusion your introductory Greek grammars insist on providing to you, is literally “without borders”, that which can happen in the past, present or even future (as is the case here: see below), though usually something which itself happens in a defined time frame, such as the choice to bind.
  • Active simply refers to something actually being accomplished.

Third person singular indicative future middle –

  • The third person singular refers to any given object of the action, its state of being.
  • It will simply be what it is (indicative)
  • at that time (future).
  • The middle voice is here used to indicate the status quo to which the actor is also subject, that is, retroactively to his decision to bind something, the truth of that which is described by the following verb, which this singular indicative future middle (“will”) helps to describe.

Nominative neuter singular participle perfect passive —

  • The nominative neuter singular refers to the object which is being bound (passive)
  • that is, in an ongoing fashion (participle)
  • in a perfect manner (perfect); mind you, in Greek, “perfect” never refers to a perfectly accomplished action at one point in time, but rather to an action which is perfectly ongoing in a perfect manner since its inception: it always was and will be this way, perfectly, with no change: “already have been made to be perfectly standing in that way.” This “perfect” action structures the capacity of the actor, Peter, to act subjunctively, preempting all choices of Peter except for the one which is consonant which the truth which has always been this way in the heavens. Whatever he may choose to bind at any given time will already have been the case, is the case, and will always continue to be the case in the heavens. Peter cannot choose anything which is not already perfectly established in the heavens. What is in heaven is not an affirmation of what Peter might pronounce; what is in heaven simply is what it is, absolute truth, so to speak. If Peter is wrong about what he intends to pronounce upon, he simply will not be able to pronounce upon it.

Indeed, the part of this equation that people forget when trying to figure out the tenses, is that there is a part of this equation which is utterly expendable: Peter. If he is going to get it wrong, he will either die or be incapacitated, but he will not be able to work against what is in heaven already. Being the Successor of Peter isn’t so much an honor as it is a service that may involve laying down his life, for, after all, what do we know? The Orthodox or any others should never be envious of infallibility.

The bit about loosing is exactly the same, verbatim:

“Whatever you may loose at any given time (second person singular subjunctive aorist active) upon the earth will (third person singular indicative future middle) already have been made to be perfectly standing in that way (nominative neuter singular participle perfect passive) in the heavens.”

Let’s review Matthew 18:18 in utterly pedantic translation:

“Whatever ye may bind at any given time (second person plural subjunctive aorist active) upon the earth will (third person singular indicative future middle) already have been made to be things perfectly standing in that way (nominative neuter singular participle perfect passive) in heaven.”

And then:

“Whatever ye may loose at any given time (second person plural subjunctive aorist active) upon the earth will (third person singular indicative future middle) already have been made to be things perfectly standing in that way (nominative neuter singular participle perfect passive) in heaven.”

There are some differences besides the plural heavens and singular heaven. Matthew 18:18 is addressed also to the laity about any number of things that may be under dispute. But the verbs and their meanings are exactly the same. But the context removes any infallibility from this other crowd. Let’s see how:

Firstly, in Matthew 16:19, where Peter alone among the Apostles is addressed, only Peter is given the keys of the Kingdom of the Heavens. There is no reference at all to such keys for anyone else in Matthew 18:18. That they have the same access to the understanding of the faith as does Peter is contingent for them in agreeing with Peter, for, as we see in context, the process of a dispute will bring them right back to the Church, that is, as differentiated from Christ’s faithful in general so as to refer to Peter in particular. They are not infallible, he is. If they rebel they are ipso facto no longer Catholic. This is what people also forget in this equation, that we are also expendable if we so choose.

What if Peter is wrong? He can’t be wrong. That’s the point. But say that it could happen, that wouldn’t mean that we ignore him, correct him, unseat him, burn him at the stake, say that he’s not a nice guy or something like that; that would mean that there is no such thing as the Church at all. It can’t happen. Period. Is “dialogue” among the faithful expected by our Lord? Yes. He explicitly speaks of it. But then there is a process to follow. But there is a richness to be expected among so many.

In all of this we must be humble, proceeding in all charity. No rancor. No bitterness. No oneupmanship. If we are arrogant and unteachable by the Most Holy Trinity, we will be cut off. But if we, by grace, submit to liberation in the living Truth of Love, we will rejoice.

  • God forbid! The cross is not for you!
  • Get behind me, Satan!

And, in the end, Peter also manifested in his own life, being crucified, that love and truth is stronger than our weakness, stronger than our darkness, stronger than death. Love and truth live! And Jesus, Divine Son of the Immaculate Conception, will come to judge the living and the dead and the world by fire. Amen.

3 Comments

Filed under Ecumenism

Lion’s Gate: Preparing the 4th Temple with the blood of the peacekeepers (This Jewish Catholic Priest’s opinion)

lions gate

Islamic terrorists like any other criminals simply ignore the fact that crime is always counter-productive. Just a little while ago, some Israeli LEOs were assassinated at the Lion’s Gate, right next to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The LEOs weren’t expecting the unprovoked attack and were exactly where they were supposed to be.

The immediate visceral reaction to this kind of violence at the Temple Mount (where you also find the ultra-vulnerable because basin-like Jewish prayer area at the Western [wailing] Wall), is to remove the Islamicists definitively, destroy the mosque, rip out the Dome of the Rock, and build the 4th Temple. Proof of this is that the immediate statement put out by Prime Minister Bibi is that the Status Quo of the Temple Mount will simply remain the same. In other words, if this was the instantaneous answer with no question being asked, the presumed question is whether the Status Quo will finally change, as it is soon expected to be changed within the foreseeable future. In other words, the tension is so much at fever pitch that anything could bring about a major change. It’s just a matter of time, sooner than later.

So, what’s this opinion of this Jewish-Catholic Priest? I think that whatever about the status of Jerusalem as an international city desired by some, blah blah blah, it is intense insanity to have more than one group contending to have ownership of the same place at the same time anywhere at any time for any reason. That’s simply not how fallen humanity is able to maintain peace.

Is it not better to have, say, the Israeli Defense Forces control the Old City of Jerusalem including the Temple Mount and then allow visitors with controllable security measures in place for each visitor? I think so. That doesn’t mean anything is any less international if whatever about that “international” issue were to be decided. One group in control just means greater security. If it’s the first most holy site for a group, shouldn’t that group be in charge? The Temple Mount is the first most holy site for the Jews.

The Church of the Resurrection is Catholic from the beginning. I think the entirety of the Church of the Resurrection, including Calvary and the Holy Sepulcher, should be given over to the Franciscans at the Custody of the Holy Land exclusively. The extreme violence of some of the groups there is simply unacceptable.

Take an example. Should Vatican City and Saint Peter’s Basilica be given over to Islam? I mean, after all, they’ve raided and pillaged Vatican City and Saint Peter’s Basilica (of the time) a number of times (the reason for the massive defensive walls around Vatican City). I don’t think so.

The easy largesse of those who shout “BE NICE!” and don’t lift a finger to help keep the peace and who don’t take account of ongoing horrific violence caused by the insistence on that easy largesse.

// (begin sarcasm) — Hey! Let’s make the Swiss Guard in charge of the Temple Mount! –(end sarcasm) //

This opinion does not have anything to do with what I think about the fulfillment of the covenants in Christ Jesus our Lord and God. No, I do not believe that any building of any 4th Temple is productive in any way on any level.

Further disclaimer: I’m Catholic. I’m Jewish. I lived in Jerusalem for a good while, arriving when Jewish pilgrims were stoned at the Western Wall from the Mosque above, and when, then, 19 Palestinians were killed. I walked from the U.N. compound South of Jerusalem back to Jerusalem down the length of the Silwan valley into Silwan and back up to the Temple Mount. That was the day after fake “Christians” went into the town of Silwan to celebrate the death of the Palestinians. Those fake “Christians” say that “ethnic cleansing” (genocide, really) of all non-Jews throughout the Holy Land is the only way for Jesus to come back again. Those fake “Christians” are simply monsters. My saying that the Jews should have control of the Temple Mount has nothing to do these fake “Christians”. It’s the other way. What I’m pushing for would save many lives on a day to day basis.

Of course, there are those who would say that this would start a war. My answer to that is, “Where have you been?” I’m guessing that when the USA takes out North Korean nuclear capabilities, the Israelis will do the same for Iran, which is perhaps the best time to take peaceful control of the Temple Mount.

5 Comments

Filed under Intelligence Community, Interreligious dialogue, Jewish-Catholic dialogue, Missionaries of Mercy

Tender snowflakes melting down want to validly, forcibly depose Pope Francis precisely as Bishop of Rome

dung snow

It ain’t gonna happen. It can’t happen. That’s not how it works. Anyone who thinks the contrary, anathema sit, as that’s straight out and out heresy. Traditional-ism-ists, that is, as personifiers of ideology, can be heretics like any others. I remember a certain seminary back in the day citing Hans Küng of all people to justify their irregular situation in the Church. Sometimes opposites attract, right?

If a Pope can be deposed for what he himself says is a non-Magisterial contribution to a dialogue, a contribution held by some to be outrageous (whether it is or not being beside the point), that means that any Pope for any reason can also be deposed by people who make up the rules as they go along (what they call constitutionalism: note the “-ism). Thus, in that view, a Pope such as Pius V or Pius X could also be deposed for personally being saints and for speaking clearly and rightly to the whole Church.

Also, in that case, and this is the point, such is the Protestant mis-exegesis of Matthew 16. The Rebels say that Jesus founded the papacy on Peter’s faith, not on his person. The Catholic doctrine is that Jesus founded the papacy on Peter.

I suggest to the tender snowflakes that they stop cowering before their own hurt emotions, grow up, and do something helpful to bring about a good situation for the salvation of souls. But this bit about deposing the Pope because their feelings are hurt is not helpful. It just reveals something under the snow.

2 Comments

Filed under Amoris laetitia, Canon 915, Pope Francis