Reading, Writing, and Reflecting

By Steve Willis

Calling the Kettle Black

Here’s an item, where the Roman Catholic church has ruled that a particular woman is not giving divine revelations:

“The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the theological watchdog for the Roman Catholic Church, ruled last month that Greek Orthodox seer Vassula Ryden communicates “private messages” that are “not divine.” Ms Ryden claims she takes dictation from Jesus Christ for six hours a day. The Vatican said Catholics should not regard Ms. Ryden’s writings and speeches as supernatural ….” (Alberta Report, Nov. 13, 1995, p. 43).

When will Catholics see that their Pope should not be regarded as giving supernatural speeches when he speaks regarding faith and morals from “the chair” of Peter?

Hell Hath No Fury

This is from a review of a review of their new publication: The Mystery of Salvation. The book has not been available to the reviewers time of writing, but this is based on interviews and reports from England:

“On the 11th day of January, Anno Domini MCMXCVI, the Doctrine Commission of the Church of England published a 220-page report, The Mystery of Salvation. There the theologians of the `middle way’ declare there is indeed a Hell. But it’s not a place of suffering, physical or other-wise. It is `total non-being.’

“`Total non-being,’ marvels a sceptical [sic] Peter Kreeft, a philosopher at Boston College and author of A Handbook on Christian Apologetics. `Hell exists, but if you’re there, you don’t. They endorse the existence of what isn’t, the being of non-being. How very inclusive.’

“Two weeks after its publication, The Mystery of Salvation is still non-existent at the Anglican Church of Canada’s headquarters in Toronto. But according to media reports from London, the document treats the bare-bones existence of hell as a logical necessity. `No one can be compulsorily installed in heaven,’ it is quoted as saying. `The possibility remains for each human being of a final rejection of God’ (Alberta Re-port, “Hell hath no fury  at all” [Jan 29, 1996], p. 32).

Some of this doctrine seems similar to the Jehovah’s Witness teaching on hell, and not a lot different than that presented by Edward Fudge in his book The Fire that Consumes. Fudge is mentioned and answered in a book, Repent or Perish (With a Special Reference to the Conservative Attack on Hell) by John H Gerstner. Note: Gerstner holds to the Calvinist doctrine that children are born in guilt and in sin and he denies baptismal regeneration.)

Guardian of Truth XL: 7 p. 26
April 4, 1996