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Papal Power Paperback – January 1, 1993
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He wrote in the Introduction, "the wide disparity between the straightforward teachings of the New Testament and the greatness and grandeur of the Roman papal church, became the cause of no small irritation to me. I felt sure that some kind of rational explanation to the phenomenon could be found... spurred primarily by the question of the incredible gap between Holy Scripture and Roman papal traditions, I began my research. Did I bridge the gap? The following pages... contain the answer." (Pg. 7-8)
He observes, "out of the circumstances surrounding the disintegration of the Western half of the empire, the Roman church emerged as the only structure strong enough to provide some degree of unity. It was not, therefore, unusual that the bishop of the largest city of the empire should be thrust into a position of prominence. He had no rival to speak of in the West. His see was comparatively free of strife and heresy. He was also at times called upon to mediate in theological disputes which were even outside to his own jurisdictional limits." (Pg. 20)
He notes, "Luther's departure from papal thinking about the church remained firmly fixed throughout his whole Reformation career... he could not identify the papal church with the true church of Christ, because it did not give heed to the Word of the Lord and did not teach true doctrine... Luther wanted it to be understood that just as an ecclesiastical organization in itself did not constitute a true church, so historical continuity in itself could not be the sole distinction between the true and false church. Any taunt such as 'Where was your church before Luther?' obviously fails to appreciate Luther's view of what constituted the true church." (Pg. 67)
This book will be of interest to those looking for Evangelical critiques of Catholicism in general, and papal influence in particular.