Unam Catholicam Ecclesiam

Continuing with Barth

The catholicity of the church, by which is meant that which is general and comprehensive, the essence of which true church is recognized as true, is found only in the union of the church with her Head, Jesus Christ. Any church having a different essence—as in its ecclesiastical structure or doctrinal commitments—is not the true church. Catholicity, therefore, is not a matter of human wisdom, but is a matter of trust and is known by revelation. It is found in the real, essential connection between the body of Christ—the church—and the Head—Jesus.

The first three marks are given by revelation and understood by faith. This puts them beyond human reach and places them squarely in the purview of the Holy Spirit. The question is, how can we know whether a specific congregation bears the marks? Barth answers this question with apostolicity…but more on that later.

About Laura

My name is Laura and I am on a journey, pondering the implications of God's glorious design of humanity and integrating every aspects of this design into a description of whole life health.
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2 Responses to Unam Catholicam Ecclesiam

  1. Jonathan says:

    Message from the department of redundancy department:This is the second “THOUGHT BUBBLE 7″I like the post. Too often, modern churches get hung up on dogma and minor doctrine and forget that Jesus Christ is our commonality.

    Admin note: the title changed when the post moved from blogger, so the “THOUGHT BUBBLE 7” portion of the comment is without reference.

  2. Laura says:

    Ah…I get it. On the first read, I skimmed over the notice from the department of redundancy department…many apologies.

    Oct 9, in Talbot chapel, William Mounce spoke on theological imbalance. I think his call for balance fits here. There must be balance between the centrality of Christ and concern for secondary issues. We ought not compromise what we believe to be true, but secondary issues must not divide us.

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