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Infallibility or Fallibility
by Dr.Arsenio Esteras, Jr
2/26/2009 / Christian Living
The "Magesterium" is the teaching authority of the Roman Catholic Church. It is this teaching authority that is clothed with the cloak of infallibility that resides in the Pope, the Vicar of Christ as claimed and indoctrinated by Catholicism. Such infallibility means that its teaching authority cannot err, that is, its teachings are one hundred percent consistent with the teachings of the Rabbi. It is this unabashed and cocky open declaration of teaching infallibility those traditional Catholic bashers who are oftentimes Non-Catholics that zero in on. Such claim of infallibility is ticklish and controversial and a never-ending issue.
The inexorably relentless and merciless written and verbal assault upon the open declaration of infallibility by the "Magesterium" of the Roman Catholic Church is just one of the many marketing strategies employed and perpetrated by other Christian religions to win over to their side marginal or liberal or nominal Catholics. They have been successful to a certain extent. It employs the reverse psychology method. The main objective of the demolition jobs by Non-Catholic Christians upon the infallibility claim of the Roman Catholic Church is to forward, propagandize and propagate that they are the true religion and their teaching authority is infallible. It cannot be viewed any other way.
Christian religion like politics particularly in the Philippines has become a lucrative business venture. Everybody is agreed that no human authority of any Christian religion worth its salt will admit that its teaching authority is fallible and dubious. If it does admit then it has rendered its faith and its followers irrelevant and insane. Admission of fallibility by any religion is a crazy "hara kiri". It is a mechanism for self-destruction that no Christian religion will dare employ. Surely, it will lose followers. Losing followers is losing money.
It is clear as day that the only difference between the Roman Catholic Church and all the other Christian religions on the matter of infallibility is such that the teaching authority or "Magesterium" of the Roman Catholic Church openly declares it while the others don't. The "Magesterium" jumped the gun on the teaching authority of the other Christian Churches. It is open declaration versus non-declaration of infallibility. It is that simple. It is a must that all Christian religions need to radiate an aura of infallibility. It is a prerequisite to survive the cut-throat competition. Each Christian religion painstakingly highlights and magnifies the mistakes and excesses of their counterparts and continually throws mud pies resembling chocolate cakes on each other's faces until kingdom come and the one who blinks loses. It is that kind of game the Christian religions play. It is akin to a perpetual chess match with innovative opening moves and crafted tactical maneuvers. Each brother seeing the speck on each other's eyes and each brother denying the existence of the speck. Admitting the presence of the speck is a step to doomsday and oblivion.
GOD in the divine Person of OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST visited this terrestrial world in fulfillment of the Scriptures. He said that so any times. It is the only book He followed and fulfilled. He never said He followed tradition. On the contrary He abhorred tradition. In the same vein, all the teaching authorities of all the Christian religions echo the same thing that all of them follow and fulfill the Scriptures even when their differences are diverse and irreconcilable. The great difference is such that OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST is GOD. He is divine. The teaching authorities of all the Christian religions are not GOD. They are not divine. They are human and incontestably prone to error. With who then does infallibility resides?
Everybody is agreed that infallibility is the twin of perfection. In this terrestrial world, nobody is perfect. Therefore, nobody is infallible even the so-called teaching authorities of all religions for that matter.
In the context of the Sacred Scriptures, the speaking authority of GOD is such that when He said, "Let there be light." Light appeared in no time. When GOD in the divine Person of the Rabbi called out the name of a lifeless and rotting corpse: "Lazarus, come out!" The decomposing corpse stood up and walked. When He ordered the demoniac: "Be silent. Get out of the man!" the evil spirit left and the religious authorities of Judaism were awed with the authority of His words. It is with such peerless kind of speaking authority that the teaching authority of the Rabbi emanates. It is the language of divinity. The recalcitrant Scribes and Pharisees of the time do not possess such kind of authority. Even the teaching authorities of the Roman Catholic Church and the other Christian persuasions also are not bestowed with such kind of teaching authority. Their words cannot make a paralytic walk. Their words cannot calm a storm. Their words cannot raise a dead man to life. On that basis, they cannot claim infallibility. Yet, they had the temerity to claim that they also follow and fulfill the Scriptures the way the Rabbi fulfilled and followed it. They all claim that they are the right religion and they are infallible with their teaching authority when they cannot even put their act together. Is that not religious hypocrisy at the highest level?
To be specific, the infallibility claim of the authorities of the "Church founded on Peter" does not sit on solid foundation but on sand. It is very explicit in the New Testament of the Sacred Scriptures that the apostle Peter is the most erratic and hence the most fallible among the Twelve. Inexplicably, it was upon him that the "Magesterium" proudly claims and indoctrinates that the Roman Catholic Church was built. He is the Vicar of the infallible One. Isn't that a contradiction? The most fallible among the chosen ones revered down the ages as the terrestrial representative of the infallible God.
The gospel narrates and portrays so vividly that Peter was the only apostle addressed "Satan" by the Rabbi. It is consistent with His categorical admission: "Did I not choose the twelve of you myself? Yet, one of you is a devil!" Peter is the demon in disguise no matter how many times and ways it is turned upside down by pure rhetoric and distorted arguments on the basis of Roman Catholic catechism. He denied the Messiah thrice at the height of the unfolding drama of the Passion after frontally declaring on the face of His Master that he was ready to die with and for Him. He lied to his teeth face-to-face with the Person he declared as the Messiah. He was a religious hypocrite! The resurrected Christ ordered him thrice to feed and tend His sheep. He was silent and practically motionless. He did not issue a word. He did not give his fiat unlike the virgin from Nazareth who humbly declared, "Be it done unto me according to thy word." He was extremely unlike Judas Iscariot. After the order of betrayal: "Friend, do what you are here for!" Judas kissed and embraced His Master before executing in haste and without hesitation the mind-boggling command.
Ergo, the infallibility claim of the Roman Catholic Church has no Scriptural leg to stand on. It is microscopically magnified by the undeniable fact that their teaching puts in a bad light the servile obedience of the Betrayer who was the only apostle addressed "Friend" by the Son of Man who is God. They can never justify their condemnation of the "Friend" of God. They left him out in the cold among their canonized saints. They are utterly fallible contrary to what they propagandize and merchandise. The truth hurts but that is the truth that will set each human person free from the fallacies of Christianity in all its varied forms and persuasions.
While it is true that the Son of Man declared upon Peter the Rock, "upon this rock I will build my church", He was not referring to a terrestrial church. He was referring to the church in heaven for the simple reason that this earth is not His kingdom: "My kingdom is not this world." He emphatically declared such truth to Pontius Pilate and "the rock" Himself. His kingdom is heaven and not this earth the reason why it was mandatory for Him to ascend and return to His kingdom where He reigns and wields His authority that Adam and Eve toyed with that cost them their divinity. Logically then the church that He referred to that was to be built upon Peter is in heaven. It cannot be any terrestrial church. It cannot be the Roman Catholic Church. God cannot be prejudicial with the other religions or churches outside the Roman Catholic Church.
When the Messiah gave the keys of the gates of heaven to Peter, He made sure that He will already follow His order and command unlike when he was on earth as the devil's advocate who was leveling with His Master when He cannot even walk on water even if he wanted to. His role as a servant of God in heaven is just to open and close the gates. He opens the gates for those whom God wishes to enter and closes the gates for those whom God does not wish to enter. It is not Peter who decides in the kingdom of God. Of course, it is God. He is simply the gatekeeper or security officer who follows orders. On the other hand, the "Friend" of God enters and leaves the gate that Peter guards and keeps anytime he wishes because God was so pleased with Him who followed His order even if it means perpetual incarceration by the human inhabitants of this earth from generation to generation. The Son of Man will not address Judas Iscariot "Friend" for nothing. He is God. His word has transforming power. He gave the Betrayer His eternal friendship at the highest level because of his servile obedience even when the ancient serpent entered his heart. Therefore, as "Friend" of God his divine privileges are simply far greater than a servant who opens and closes the gates. "The first will be the last and the last will be the first."
There is only one GOD. There must only be one religion. God is not religion. He is the object of worship and adoration of all religions; religions that conceptualize and merchandise the word of God rather than concretize and evangelize it. Besides, just like any government in this world, religions tax their followers too. They do it by a guilt mechanism called "conscience disturbance". The blind followers regularly give their tithes or donations because their consciences are disturbed by the falsehood that God is religion and religion is God. They are afraid that if they do not give money to their churches on a regular basis they will not be allowed entry to heaven. They have been brain-washed by the infallibility clause: "God is religion; religion is God." It is a clause that is simply satanic and patently fallible that has built lavishly adorned terrestrial but not celestial churches from generation to generation.
All things said, the infallibility of the teaching authorities of all Christian religions whether openly declared or not, whether Roman Catholic or not, is a myth. It is all foolishness. They are all fallible contrary to what they profess explicitly or implicitly. The realities of terrestrial life and the lessons from history, biblical or extra-biblical, bore that out time and time again but not anyone of them will budge because the lucrative business that is religion will fall. A lot of "holy people" will lose their tithes and with it their so-called "sacred office" whatever that means.
Peace to everyone!
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