The Canadian Red Ensign

The Canadian Red Ensign

Thursday, June 22, 2023

The Season of Hubris


Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.  And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good. (Ezekiel 16:49-50)


A couple of decades ago the degradation of our culture and civilization had only proceeded so far as to devote a parade once a year to honouring the worst of all sins, the sin that brought the judgement of fire and brimstone down upon the cities of the plain, Sodom and Gomorrah, in the nineteenth chapter of Genesis.   The parade became a day, the day became a week, and now the entire sixth month of the year is dedicated to the celebration of this sin.   This year Captain Airhead, the dolt who for eight years has disgraced the office of Prime Minister of His Majesty’s government in Ottawa, somehow clinging to power despite scandal after scandal each of which should have been career destroying, and who never opens his mouth without sticking his foot in it, informally extended the period to a “season”.


As can be seen in the Scriptural passage that I have used as the epigraph for this essay there are several sins for which God’s judgement fell on Sodom.   Until a few generations ago, however, reference to the sin of Sodom in the singular would not likely have caused confusion because the name of the city was associated with a single sin of a sexual nature, the sin highlighted by St. Jude in his reference to the judgement on the cities in his epistle and which appears in the list in the Ezekiel passage as the last item referenced.  While this sin is, obviously, a huge part of what is being celebrated this month, it is not this sin that I am talking about but the first sin in Ezekiel’s list, the sin after which the celebration has been named.


I have often made the observation that when the name of this celebration was reduced to Pride, they abandoned the lesser of two sins – sins of a sexual nature fall under the heading of the least of the Seven Deadly Sins, Lust – and kept the worst of all, Pride.


Pride is the worst sin of all.   The concept of the Seven Deadly Sins goes back to the fourth century of Christianity.   St. Evagrius Ponticus was a disciple of the Cappadocian Fathers, first of St. Basil the Great then of St. Gregory Nazianzus whom he followed to Constantinople on the eve of the Second Ecumenical Council before withdrawing first to Jerusalem then later to Egypt, to live a monastic life.   In Egypt, he encountered the teachings of the Alexandrian Neoplatonist monks who, dividing the human being into body, soul, and mind, identified for each a trio of λογισμοί – literally, this is the plural of “calculation”, but is probably better rendered “thoughts” in this context – that influenced the components in bad ways.   This made for nine in total, which were arranged in a hierarchy proceeding from those which afflicted the body to those which afflicted the mind, with the ones affecting the body being the lowest and least, the ones affecting the mind being the worst.   St. Evagrius reduced this to a list of eight sins or rather vices if we distinguish between sins as acts and vices as behavioural patterns or habits.   St. John Cassian, who brought the monastic movement out of the deserts of Egypt by founding a monastery in Gaul or France as it is today, popularized St. Evagrius’ list in his writings.   It was further revised around 590 AD by St. Gregory the Great, Bishop of Rome, in his commentary on Job entitled The Book of Morals.    Technically, St. Gregory retained a list of eight sins because he separated Pride from what he called the “seven principal sins”, declaring Pride to be the source from which these seven flow.   The seven were Vainglory, Envy, Wrath, Melancholy, Avarice, Gluttony, and Lust.   This was later revised so that Vainglory was folded up into Pride and Melancholy was replaced with Sloth, producing the list that found its way into St. Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologicae and Dante’s Divine Comedy in which the seven levels of Purgatory correspond to the seven.   This is the list that we know as the Seven Deadly Sins to this day.  The order represents their ranking.   In The Book of Morals they are listed in descending order from worst to least, in the later revised version they would be listed in ascending order.  Although his criteria for determining the hierarchy of sin differed from that of the Neoplatonists the result was largely the same.   Subsequent lists of the Seven Deadly Sins have varied the order.   Sometimes they are listed in ascending order, sometimes in descending, other times whether in ascending or descending order there are slight changes in the ranking reflecting differences of opinion as to what is worse than what.   Consistently, however, from the Neoplatonists and St. Evagrius to St. Gregory the Great to Dante to us today, Pride has been considered the worst of all.


While the Seven Deadly Sins are a later theological construct and so are not listed as such in the Bible it is difficult to argue with the contention that the ranking of Pride as the worst of all sins is Biblical.   A search of the Bible for a use of the word that is positive or even neutral yields little in the way of fruit.   The first occurrence of the word and the only occurrence in the Pentateuch is found in Leviticus 26:19 in which the LORD, telling the Israelites what He will do to them if they do not obey His commandments, says that “I will break the pride of your power”.   In the historical books, David’s brother claims to know David’s Pride (1 Sam. 17:28)  in what is clearly not intended as a compliment and Pride is what King Hezekiah has to repent and humble himself from (2 Chron. 32:26) .   In the Psalms Pride is consistently the characteristic of the wicked (10:2,4; 36:11; 59:12).   In Proverbs Pride is hated by the LORD and those who fear Him (8:13), brings with it shame (11:2), contention (13:10), destruction and a fall (16:18), is in the mouth of the foolish (14:3) and will bring him low (29:23).   In the Prophets Pride is something that brings the judgement of God upon a people whether it be Israel (Is. 28:1, 3 – Ephraim, from which tribe the ruling dynasty of the Northern Kingdom came, is used here as it often is to signify the schismatic Kingdom as a whole), Moab (Is. 16:6), or Judah (Jer. 13:9).  In the book of Daniel it is what brings judgement on Nebuchadnezzar (5:20). There is only one verse in the Old Testament in which the word Pride could possibly be taken in a sense less negative than those we have already looked at.   We shall consider it after looking at the New Testament references which are few.   In the New Testament, Pride is absolutely, unambiguously evil.   In Mark 7:22 it is one of the evil things that come from within a man and defile him.   In 1 John 2:16 the “pride of life” is one of the three things that make up “the world” in the sense of the system organized against God.   In 1 Tim. 3:6 St. Paul warns St. Timothy against the ordination of a novice “lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil”.   Here the Apostle associates Pride with the devil, a traditional association which is the reason why the one verse in the Old Testament that could possibly be taken as neutral probably should not be so taken.   The verse is Job 41:15 which begins with “his scales are his pride”.   His in this passage refers to Leviathan.   Leviathan was the name of a creature conceived of as a sea serpent or sea dragon.   When the Old Testament speaks of him it is invariably speaking about Satan.   The enemy of God makes his first appearance as a serpent in Genesis.   In Revelation the Dragon is identified as that serpent of old, the devil and Satan.   In Isaiah 27:1 Leviathan the sea serpent is clearly Satan.  There is no reason to think that the Leviathan of Job is any different, especially when the chapter goes on to describe him as “king over all the children of pride” (Job 41:34), and the structure of the book as a whole rather demands that a reference to Satan be made precisely at this point.   The reference to his Pride in verse 15, therefore, cannot be taken as an exception to the rule that Pride is always a bad thing in the Bible.


The verses we looked at in the previous paragraph are verses that use words rendered “Pride” in our Authorized Bible.  The related adjective “proud” is used slightly more often than the noun.   The noun can be found in 46 verses, the adjective in 47, but these support the picture of Pride that one gets from the verses that use the noun.   Several of them, for example, use the adjective as a substantive, “the proud”, who might as well be called “the wicked” as they are always referred to as people whom God “resisteth” or hath otherwise set Himself against.   Needless to say verses that use synonyms that are translated “haughty”, “arrogant”, and the like, provide additional support.


Now it might be argued that all of this merely proves that Pride is bad, not that it is the worst of evils.   The traditional view that it is the worst of sins was derived in a number of ways.   To the Neoplatonists it was the worst because it was the ultimate sin of the mind, the sins of the mind being worse than the sins of the soul, which in turn are worse than the sins of the body, because the mind is higher than the soul which is higher than the body.   For St. Gregory the Great it was the worst because it offended the most against Love.   One can only image what St. Gregory would have thought if he could have looked ahead in time to the day when multitudes would march under the banner of Pride chanting the tautological mantra “love is love”.   Scripturally, Pride’s being the worst of sins is derived from it literally being the Original Sin, the source of all others.   There are two ways in which this is the case.   The one, clearly found in the Bible, is that Pride led to the Fall of Man.   The serpent’s temptation of Eve in the Garden was temptation to Pride.   “Ye shall be as gods”, i.e., like God Himself.   That the serpent – the serpent of old who is the Devil and Satan – would tempt man with Pride, provides support for the traditional view that Pride is what was behind his own Fall.   In the traditional view, the devil started out as Lucifer, a high ranking angel in heaven, who became the first liberal, or Whig to use Dr. Johnson’s parlance, urging his fellow angels to support him in his rebellious bid to overthrow the Sovereign King of the universe, God, and establish a cosmic democratic republic with him as its head.   His rebellion failed but the Cosmic Cromwell became the cruel tyrant of all who followed him in rejecting the King of the universe, setting the pattern for all subsequent human liberal democratic republicanism.   There is no explicit account of the origin of Satan in the Old Testament as there is of the Fall of Man but it is inferred from passages in Isaiah and Ezekiel where human rulers are spoken to in such a way as to suggest that the supernatural evil behind them is who is truly being addressed.   The explicit account is found in the twelfth chapter of the book of Revelation.   The point is that Pride is believed to have been what motivated the rebellion.   This is based on St. Paul’s words to St. Timothy and what can be inferred from Isaiah 14.


In the Septuagint, the translation of the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek made by seventy Jewish scholars for Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Egypt and which became the Christian Old Testament,  the Wisdom of Solomon says that “through envy of the devil came death into the world: and they that do hold of his side do find it” (Wis. 2:24).   This is not discussing the cause of Satan’s Fall but his motivation in tempting man.   Envy, however, is closely related to Pride.   It refers to hating someone else for having something you don’t or being something you aren’t so much that you seek to destroy that person. In the standard list of the Seven Deadly Sins it stands next to Pride.     On the one end of the list are the vices which are classic Aristotelian vices – ordinary human appetites indulged in to excess.   Lust, Gluttony, Avarice, and Sloth fall into this category.   On the other end of the list are the vices that are Satanic in nature.   Pride and Envy fall into this category.  Wrath either belongs with Pride and Envy or is the middle ground between the two categories.   Some have produced lists in which Avarice rather than Envy stands next to Pride.   I suspect this to be the result of crackpot left-wing ideas infiltrating theological circles.   Avarice is the vice associated with capitalism.   Envy is the vice associated with socialism.   One can be a businessman, or at least one used to be able to be a businessman in the days before globalism, multi-national corporations, tech giants and media conglomerates, without succumbing to Avarice.   One cannot be a socialist without embracing Envy for Envy is the essence of socialism, its sine qua non, the spirit that moves it and motivates it.


Many would say that there is a good Pride and a bad Pride and that everything said above pertains to the bad Pride.   This is an Aristotelian concept, at least if we regard Pride as a proper translation of μεγαλοψυχία from book four of his Nicomachean Ethics.   That this is a proper translation is rather doubtful.   Liddell and Scott give as their first definition of it “greatness of soul, highmindedness, lordliness” and even “generosity”.   “Greatness of soul” is what you get when you split the word into its components and literally translate each of them.  Unfortunately, what you get when you transliterate the word is megalopsychia, which sounds like it describes a mental condition that will get you locked up in an asylum for the criminally insane.    This is not the word translated Pride in the New Testament.   In Mark 7:22 the word is ὑπερηφανία, in 1 John 2:12 it is ἀλαζονεία, in 1 Timothy 3:6 the phrase in which it occurs is in Greek the single word τυφωθείς.   ὑπερηφανία, a compound formed from the word for “over” and the word for “shine”, basically means self-promoting arrogance.   This is the word that is used for Pride in the early Greek versions of what would become the Seven Deadly Sins.   Its adjectival form occurs five times in the New Testament, in three instances being used substantively to mean “the proud” and in the other two used as “proud” in lists of attributive adjectives, all of which are negative.  The primary meaning of ἀλαζονεία is “false pretension, imposture” from which the meaning of “boastfulness” is derived, which is its meaning in the Scriptural text.   Τυφωθείς, rendered “being lifted up with pride” in the Authorized Bible, is a passive aorist participle form of the verb τυφόω which in the active voice means to “delude”, but when it is used in the passive voice indicates that the subject of the verb is “crazy, demented”.   Liddell and Scott give as more specific versions of the passive meaning “demented, rendered vain” and “filled with insane arrogance”.  Aristotle’s μεγαλοψυχία does not appear in the New Testament and it would be difficult to take the word as he uses and describes it as a synonym for any of the New Testament words for Pride, although it would also be difficult to argue that it is consistent with humility, which both Testaments stress is something God insists upon among the faithful.   Liddell and Scott do give a second definition, noting that the word can be used in a bad sense, in which case they render it “arrogance”, which of course, would be a synonym for the New Testament words for Pride.   Those today who would distinguish between a good Pride and a bad Pride seldom have anything like what Aristotle meant by μεγαλοψυχία in mind.   What they think of good Pride is something along the lines of “an honest and non-inflated sense of achievement or accomplishment” or “thinking well, but not too highly, of oneself”.


The Pride that our civilization has decided in its apostasy and decadence to celebrate every June, however, bears no resemblance to either these more modest redefinitions of Pride or to Aristotle’s μεγαλοψυχία.   Observe the way in which those who celebrate Pride now demand that everyone else do so as well.   Public figures, even if they do not actively speak against Pride but merely do not speak in favour of it, do not march in its parades, do not wave its flag perverted from the sign God gave the world as a token of His Covenant never to send a world-destroying Flood again in defiance of Him and ignorance of its full implications (1), and are basically deemed insufficiently supportive, find themselves in a position eerily similar to the person in the Soviet Union who was the first to stop clapping after one of Stalin’s boring harangues.   This “you must support us or be destroyed” attitude is hardly consistent with either a modest rather than inflated positive feeling about yourself and your accomplishments or Aristotle’s μεγαλοψυχία which can be translated “generosity” or “magnitude”, i.e., the opposite of the attitude in question.   It is, however, very consistent with another Greek word that is often associated with Aristotle, albeit with his writings on rhetoric and Greek tragedy more than his Ethics.   This is the word ὕβρις.   Transliterated as hubris this word continues to be used in English today.


The primary meaning of ὕβρις provided by Liddell and Scott is “wanton violence, insolence”.   They provide an explanation of this definition in which they clarify that the violence arises out of the Pride of strength or of passion.   Think of someone who thinks that because he is strong he can walk all over those who are weaker – a bully would be a good example – and you have a pretty good picture of what is meant by it.   Aristotle identified it as foremost example of a character flaw – interestingly he used a word that has the basic meaning of “failure, fault” that in the New Testament is the primary word for sin – that in tragedy, brings about the fall of the hero.   ὕβρις is not used often in the New Testament.  It occurs three times and in our Authorized Bible is translated “hurt”, “harm” and “reproaches”, i.e., designating the acts that spring from the attitude rather than the attitude itself.    In the LXX, however, it is frequently used for Pride.   It is used alongside ὑπερηφανία in Leviticus 26:19 when the LORD says that He will break the “pride of your power”.   Rather fittingly considering its association with a fall in Aristotle and popular ancient Greek thought it is also used in the LXX of Proverbs 16:18 and is the Pride those who fear the Lord are enjoined to hate in Proverbs 8:13.


This word so appropriately describes the attitude that is on display in the celebrations of Pride that I humbly suggest it be used instead to clarify more precisely what is being celebrated.

 (1)   The “bow” in “rainbow” is not the bow you tie around your neck or in the strings of your shoes but the “bow” that an archer uses.   The Latin word for bow is arcus, from which the words archer, arch, and arc are derived.  Arch is an architectural device that shares the shape of the weapon which is also the shape of the sign that appears in the sky after it rains.   An arc is a curve in geometry.  The kind of artificial rainbow that is sometimes produced by passing light through a prism is often called an arc.  Welding arcs and electrical arcs are also so-named for their curved, bow-like, shape.   When Genesis records the LORD’s covenant with Noah and His placing His “bow” in the sky as His promise never to destroy the world in a Flood again, the word for “bow” is קֶשֶׁת which denotes the weapon and which like its English equivalents is derived from a verb meaning “bend”.   The significance of this sign is that LORD was hanging up His bow, i.e., putting it away never to use it again.   Also implied, however, in the use of the image of a weapon as the sign, is a warning not to behave in the way that brought the judgement of the Deluge in the first place. 


Friday, June 16, 2023

The Ninth Article – The Holy Catholick Church

Before delving into the theological meat of the ninth Article of the Christian Creed allow me to point out that the spelling of “Catholick” in the title of this essay is not a typo.    The declinable suffix –icus in Latin and its Greek counterpart - ῐκός were added to other words, usually nouns, to turn them into adjectives.   These suffixes survive in both English and French where they have dropped the declinable case endings but retained the function and meaning in the French –ique and the English –ic.  The English suffix had a number of different spellings before it was standardized as –ic in the nineteenth century.   In the sixteenth century editions of the Book of Common Prayer we find the Nicene Creed talking about the “Catholike” and “Apostolike” Church.   This is obviously an Anglicized version of the French spelling.   More common was the Middle English –ick, which we find in the 1662 Restoration edition of the Book of Common Prayer.    This version continued to be used well into the Modern English period but the k was dropped from standard spelling by the end of the Victorian era.  Today, when the older spelling of adjectives that in standard spelling end in –ic is used, it is for the purpose of being deliberately archaic.      This is why I have used it in the title.   I will not force you, my readers, to endure it every time this word appears in this essay, however.  I will use it when citing the Restoration BCP, but otherwise will use the standard spelling.  


In the Apostles’ Creed the ninth Article and all the Articles that follow it are part of the same sentence that began in the eighth Article with Credo or “I believe”.   This verb has multiple objects and the remainder of the sentence lists them, separating them with commas, in Spiritum Sanctum or “in the Holy Ghost” being the first in the sequence.   The tenth, eleventh, and twelfth Articles, like the eighth, each contain one item in the list.   The ninth Article contains two items, which tells us that these two items have an even closer connection than that which exists between all the items in the list, one so close that they are treated as being in some sense the same thing.  The ninth Article in the original Latin reads: sanctam Ecclesiam catholicam, sanctorum communionem.  In the Restoration Book of Common Prayer this is rendered as “The holy Catholick Church; The Communion of Saints”.   In addition to the spelling update discussed in the first paragraph, later editions of the BCP revert to the commas of the Latin original in place of the semi-colon.


In the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed there is only one item in this Article.   This part of the conciliar Creed does not use the same grammatical structure as the Apostles’ Creed.  The eighth Article is its own sentence as is the ninth and the tenth Article begins with a completely different first person verb.   The Greek original is Εἰς μίαν, ἁγίαν, καθολικὴν καὶ ἀποστολικὴν Ἐκκλησίαν.   Here the Restoration Book of Common Prayer, like the earlier English Reformation editions of 1549 and 1559, interestingly departs from both the Greek and Latin texts of the Creed by rendering it “And I believe one Catholick and Apostolick Church”.   The “And” renders “Et” in the Latin text, which does not have an equivalent in the Greek original, but the “I believe” is entirely an interpolation, having no original in either the Greek or Latin texts.  Whereas one would expect to find an “in” after the “I believe” – and in actual practice, when this part of the Creed is recited it is often inserted by those doing the reciting – it is absent from the English text, although it can be found without the “And I believe” in the Greek original.   A more important omission is the word “holy” after “one” and before “Catholick”.  This is the ἁγίαν in the Greek text and it is present in the Latin as sanctam in the Latin text.   The reason for Cranmer’s omission of it is unclear.  It couldn’t have been a theological objection to it because he retained it in the Apostles’ Creed.   The oft offered explanation that it was due to what we would call textual criticism today – that he found a regional Latin variation that omitted the sanctam and became convinced that this rather than the text in use everywhere else was the original – is not very satisfactory.   It is unlikely that he would have left it out for this reason without leaving a written explanation justifying the decision and it would be very strange and inconsistent for him to have omitted the universally testified to “holy” for this reason while a) adding “I believe” to the text and b) retaining the unoriginal filioque in the preceding Article.   Recent editions of the Book of Common Prayer, like the Canadian 1962 edition, have restored the “holy” which should have been done much sooner.   Everywhere else, Cranmer’s English rendition of the Creed is impeccably faithful to the original and impossible to improve on in English style, making the way in which he treated this Article all the more conspicuous for departing from that norm.


In the ninth Article as it appears in the conciliar Creed we find four adjectives and a noun.   The four adjectives – one, holy, Catholic and Apostolic – are called the marks or notes of the Church.  Church, of course, is the noun, and we shall consider it first before looking at the words that modify it.


In English the word Church represents the Greek word Ἐκκλησία.   The Latin Ecclesia is the Greek word borrowed and transliterated into Latin characters.   At the root of the Greek word is the combination of the preposition ἐκ which is used to denote movement of some sort, literal or metaphorical, from a source and is most often translated “of” “from” or “out of” in English, with the verb κᾰλέω which means “call” or “summon” (our English word “call” is derived from this verb’s cognate in the Germanic family of languages).   The compound form of the verb is a more intense way of saying “summon” and the noun we are looking at was formed from the passive perfect form of the verb indicating those who have been summoned, i.e., to a meeting or “assembly” as it is regularly translated when it is not being used as the name of the sacred society affirmed in the Creed.   In pre-New Testament ancient Greek literature it was used of formal military and political assemblies.   It was used, for example, for the citizen-assemblies of the Greek city-states, of which the most famous was that of Athens.   Aristophanes’ comedy in which the women of Athens put on fake beards and their husbands clothes and invade the assembly where they vote themselves supreme power over the city-state is entitled  Ἐκκλησιάζουσαι which, when it is not just Latinized as Ecclesiazusae is usually translated Assemblywomen.   When the writers of the New Testament chose this word for the spiritual society founded by Jesus Christ through His Apostles it was not for these political associations, but for the word’s more basic meaning of people gathered or assembled together.   In the LXX, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Scriptures made at the request of Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Egypt from which the New Testament writers frequently quote and which in practical usage became the Christian Old Testament, this word is used on numerous occasions when all of national Israel was assembled together.   The most relevant of these to our discussion of the Christian Ἐκκλησία is how the word is used in the translation of the Books of Moses.   Here it is the word used of the sacred assembly when the LORD commanded that Israel assemble before Him, that His Law be read to them, and made His Covenant with them.   In the Book of Deuteronomy commandments are given that make it clear that this assembly was not just a historical gathering but something that was to be ongoing for the duration of the Covenant.      In this sense, it basically means Israel, viewed not through the ethnic/political lens as a nation, but through the religious/spiritual lens as the “congregation of the LORD’.   This is the usage of the word that would have been first and foremost in the minds of the New Testament writers when they used this word of the society that was formed when the Holy Ghost descended upon the Apostles.    In the Ἐκκλησία of which they wrote and which we affirm here in the Creed this Old Testament concept of the “Congregation of the LORD” is updated and adapted for the New Covenant.


The English word “Church” that we use for the Ἐκκλησία, like the German “Kirche”, the Scottish “kirk” and other such cognates in the Germanic family of languages is ultimately derived from the Greek word meaning “of the Lord” through a Gothic intermediary word that has been lost to time.  This etymology suggests that this word originally denoted the place where the Ἐκκλησία assembled and eventually came to also be the word for the Ἐκκλησία itself, although the original usage has been retained as well since we often speak of the buildings where the Church meets as “churches”.   When this word appears in the English translation of the Creed and when it translates Ἐκκλησία in the New Testament it is not with the meaning of the building, however, but of the society of worshippers that gathers there.


In the Gospels, the Church is seldom mentioned by name.   St. Matthew is the only the Evangelist to use the word Ἐκκλησία and he uses it only three times.   All of these are in the future tense.   The first is when Jesus, following St. Peter’s confession of Him as “the Christ, the Son of the Living God” declares that “upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Matt. 16:18).   The other two occur in a single verse two chapters later when Jesus is giving His disciples instructions as to what to do when their brothers sin against them.    The Gospel accounts record other things that are important to ecclesiology – the commissioning of the Apostles, the institution of the Lord’s Supper in each of the Synoptic Gospels, and the extended pre-institution teaching concerning its significance in the sixth chapter of St. John’s Gospel to give three examples – but from the uses of Ἐκκλησία in St. Matthew and Jesus’ post-Last Supper pre-arrest dialogue recoded in St. John, we see that the Church was still in the future at the time of the events recorded in the Gospels, awaiting Christ’s Ascension and the coming of the Holy Ghost.


It is St. Luke who provides us with the account of the birth of the Church.   He does not use the word Ἐκκλησία in his Gospel but he uses it frequently throughout the Acts of the Apostles in which it occurs for the first time in the last verse of the second chapter.   St. Luke records, both at the end of his Gospel and the beginning of Acts, Jesus’ instructions to His Apostles to wait in Jerusalem until they are empowered from Heaven to carry out the Commission He had given them.    This occurred, a little over a week after His Ascension, on Pentecost.   Pentecost, meaning “fifty”, was the Greek name for the Jewish Feast of Weeks, Shavuot, so called because it fell a “week of weeks”, i.e., seven weeks, after Passover.   This was one of the three pilgrimage festivals prescribed to Israel in the Law of Moses in which the Israelites were commanded to annually assemble, first at the Tabernacle, then later at the Temple in Jerusalem.  On the Pentecost after the Ascension, as devout Jews from all over the Roman Empire were gathering in Jerusalem for the festival, St. Luke records that the Apostles were gathered together in one place when the sound of a mighty wind from Heaven filled the house, cloven tongues of fire appeared over them, and the Holy Ghost filled them and they began to proclaim Christ in the languages of the Diaspora Jews gathered for the festival.   This astonished the multitude and St. Peter addressed them with a sermon in which he proclaimed Jesus, Whom they had so recently crucified, to have risen from the dead and to be the long awaited Christ.   The repentant crowd asked what they must do and he told them to repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and the Holy Ghost would come upon them as well.   About three thousand were so converted that day and “they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” (Acts 2:42).


This was the birth of the Christian Church.   Had St. Peter gone on to preach a second sermon in which he told them that they, each of them as individuals, were the Church, and that they as individuals were the Church as they went out and lived their individual lives and conducted their individual everyday business in the world around them, the sort of sermon that is heard from time to time from certain Protestant pulpits, they would have looked at him as if the reverse of the miracle of Pentecost had taken place, for this sort of language would have been completely foreign to them.   The Church was not who they were as individuals but who they were as a community.   It was right here in the very name of their society – the Ἐκκλησία – those assembled or gathered together.   Together, they were, for St. Luke goes on to tell us that they were together, both in the Temple and from home to home, on a daily basis, not just once a week.  Indeed, at first the Church was not just a community but what we would call a commune, holding all things in common.   At the end of this description of this sacred community in its fledgling days, St. Luke names it by telling us “the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved”. (Acts. 2:47).


Since she is rarely mentioned in the Gospels, and it is her earliest history with which St. Luke is concerned in the book of Acts, it is the epistles of the New Testament that we must turn to find doctrine concerning the Church.   In the epistles, three metaphorical images are prominently used to depict the Church and these correspond with the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity.   With regards to the Father, the Church is called the people of God.   While there are a few verses in St. Paul’s epistles that refer to the Church this way, such as Titus 2:14, it is St. Peter who makes the most out of this image in the second chapter of his First Epistle where he writes:


But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light; Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. (1 Pet. 2:9-10)


Here St. Peter, the Apostle of the Circumcision (Gal. 2:7), writing to churches whose members were largely of Jewish origins, borrows the Old Testament’s language with regards to Israel and applies it to the Church.   We shall defer discussion of the relationship between the Church and Old Testament Israel to later when we address the note of unity.   Note that this is also the proof text for the Protestant doctrine of the “universal priesthood of believers”.   Clearly the universal priesthood of the Church is here affirmed, just as the universal priesthood of Israel was affirmed in Deuteronomy.   We shall address the erroneous conclusion that many Protestants infer from “universal priesthood” when we come to the note of Apostolicity.


With regards to the Son, the Church is said to be the Body of Christ.   This is the primary image that St. Paul uses of the Church and he uses throughout his epistles.   In this image, the Church is likened to a physical body, Jesus Christ is identified as the Head, and the individuals Christians who are members of the Church are likened to the other parts of a body.  When this imagery is used, the emphasis is on the unity of the Church.   In the twelfth chapters of both Romans and 1 Corinthians the unity of the Body is urged against those who either looked with envy at other Christians spiritual gifts and ministries or conversely thought theirs were more important than those of others.  One implication of this imagery is that in this period of time, after the Ascension His Presence on earth that began with His Incarnation is continued in His Body, the Church until He returns in Judgement and receives His Church to Himself as His Bride. (1)  St. Paul also teaches that this unity of Christians, with each other and with Christ, is established and maintained by means of the Sacraments of the Church.   In baptism, which as we saw in Acts 2 is the rite of entry to the Church, St. Paul says in Romans 6, Galatians 3, and Colossians 2 we are united with Christ.   In 1 Corinthians 10, speaking of the Sacrament of Holy Communion – the “breaking of bread” that the first Church partook of daily in Acts 2 – he writes “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.” (2 Cor. 10:16-17).


With regards to the Holy Ghost, the Church is the Temple of the Holy Ghost.   This exact expression is found in 1 Corinthians 6:19 which is often mistakenly taken to be talking about the physical body of the individual Christian.   The verse reads “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?”   The mistake is excusable in that it occurs in a passage in which fornication is being discussed and in which the physical body is mentioned in the previous verse.   In this verse, however, the body is modified with the plural possessive “your” by contrast with “the” and “his own” in the preceding verse, and this point back to three chapters earlier where the Apostle tells the Church to which he is writing that they collectively are the “temple of God”, and that the Spirit of  God dwelleth in you?” (1 Cor. 3:16) shortly after having described them as “God’s building” erected on the foundation of Jesus Christ.   1 Corinthians 6:19 is referring back to this.   The contrast between its metaphorical use of the word body and the literal use in the preceding verse is wordplay.  If you look at the argument in the passage as a whole, noting the contrast drawn in verses 16-17, it becomes evident that the body in verse 19 is the Church.   Further examples of the Temple image can be found in 1 Peter 2, in the verses just prior to the ones about the Church as the people of God, where the Church is described as a “spiritual house” built up with the “lively stones” of the believers with Christ Himself as the “chief corner stone”, and in Ephesians 2:22 where Jesus Christ is again identified as the “chief corner stone” of a temple built on the foundation of “the apostles and prophets”. 


Among evangelical Protestants it is widely thought that when the New Testament speaks of the Church as the People of God, the Body of Christ, and the Temple of the Holy Ghost, “the Church” does not denote a visible society but is used as an aggregate term for all individual believers in Jesus Christ.  Theologically, this concept is described as “the invisible Church”.   Something like the invisible Church concept can be inferred from St. Paul’s remarks concerning national Israel that they are not all Israel who are called Israel, but that only the believing and obedient are the true Jews, the inference being that the same can be said of the Church.   The closest that the New Testament comes to explicitly expressing this concept, however, is the expression “the elect”. The word Ἐκκλησία is never used with this meaning in the New Testament, however.   Apart from instances where it is used for assemblies of other sorts, it always refers to the visible society that was established on the Pentecost after the Ascension.   It is this visible society that is the People of God, Body of Christ, and Temple of the Holy Ghost.


We turn now to the notes or marks of the Church, those four adjectives that modify the word Church in the conciliar Creed.   We shall not examine them in the order in which they appear in the Creed, but will start with the most controversial and most misunderstood, Catholic, and then we shall look at Apostolic, which follows Catholic in the Creed, before turning to the first two notes in the order in which they appear, One and Holy.  


This word Catholic is widely misunderstood today, both by those who think it means the Communion over which the Bishop of Rome presides supreme, and by those who do not.  To understand what it really means, we need to go back to the book of Acts and see what happened to that society, the Church, after Pentecost.   In the third through sixth chapters of Acts, the Church has not yet expanded beyond Jerusalem, although it is rapidly growing.   In the sixth chapter the Church has grown so much, that the Apostles establish the order of Deacons to take care of the distribution of goods, and one of these, St. Stephen, is brought before the Sanhedrin by false accusers.   The seventh chapter is mostly an account of the sermon he gave on that occasion and ends with his martyrdom by stoning.   Saul of Tarsus, who would become St. Paul the Apostle, appears for the first time in the account of St. Stephen’s martyrdom, and at the beginning of the eighth chapter we read “And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles”.   From this point on the Church is no longer just in Jerusalem, but is found throughout the Holy Land wherever the scattered members go.   The persecution fails in its intent for the Church only grows the more because her scattered members “went everywhere preaching the word” (Acts. 8:4).   The example is provided of St. Philip the Evangelist – one of the seven deacons ordained earlier in the sixth chapter and not the Apostle of the same name – who brings the Gospel to the Samaritans. In the ninth chapter the account returns to Saul of Tarsus, who with letters of authority from the High Priest sets out to Damascus to take the Christians there prisoner and bring them back to Jerusalem only to encounter the Risen Christ on the way.  Converted and commissioned by the Lord, he goes blinded to Damascus where he is taken in by the Church, healed and baptized, and straightway begins preaching Christ until he is forced to flee the city.   After this St. Luke records “Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.”   In the Received Text of the New Testament this is the first plural use of the word Church. (2)  The plural can be found in the New Testament when the writer wishes to speak of the Church in several different locations at the same time, but it is far more common for the singular to be used, because the New Testament writers stress the unity of the Church.   Wherever the Church is found, it is the one Church established in Jerusalem on Pentecost.   In New Testament usage, the Church in a particular location is spoken of as the Church, not as the local part of the Church.   It is the same Church wherever it is and if a distinction needs to be made between the Church in a particular location and the Church everywhere the New Testament writers make the distinction by identifying the location of the particular Church – the Church in Corinth, the Church in Galatia, etc.   Obviously, they could have done this the other way around by using a modifier for “the Church” when the Church everywhere was intended, and very early on Christians realized the advantage to having such a word and settled on καθολικὴ.   The first recorded use of this word, which is a compound form of the Greek word for “whole” in which the prepositional prefix which usually means “down”, “against” or “according to” is just an intensifier, is in St. Ignatius’ epistle to the Church at Smyrna.   St. Ignatius was the bishop of Antioch and like St. Polycarp, the bishop of Smyrna, was a direct disciple of the Apostle John.   The epistle in question was written shortly before the martyrdom of St. Ignatius which according to Eusebius of Caesarea occurred in the reign of Trajan (98 to 117 AD).   There is no reason to think that St. Ignatius coined the word for this epistle and so his early second century use of it is a good indicator that it may have been in use already before the end of the first century.


The word “Catholic” then speaks of the Church, the society of Christian believers established in Jerusalem on Pentecost and spread throughout the world, as a whole wherever she can be found, as distinct from her presence in one particular location, or from her presence in multiple specific locations that are not all-inclusive of every location in which she is present which is when the New Testament uses the plural.   Therefore, contrary to widespread contemporary usage, it is not communion with the Church of one particular location, Rome, that makes a Church Catholic.   “Roman” is not one of the notes of the Church in the Creed and Scripturally it is the Church in Jerusalem that is the Mother Church and not the Church in Rome.   The Roman Church errs, therefore, in identifying herself as the Mother Church, and those in communion with her as the Catholic Church.   Hyper-Protestants, who similarly identify the Catholic Church with the Roman Church but who condemn her for being Catholic and who do not hesitate to condemn traditions that are held not just by the Roman Church but shared by all the ancient Churches, err worse than the Roman Church in this regards.   The reverse error to this, is that of those Protestants who define Catholic as “universal” and think that by doing so they have identified the Catholic Church with the “invisible Church”.   Catholic does mean “universal”, of course, but “universal” in the sense of the visible society founded in Jerusalem extended universally, not in the sense of an aggregate of unorganized individual believers.   Organic continuity with the Mother Church in Jerusalem is essential to the Catholicity of a Church, present communion with the Church in Rome and her Bishop is not.


Further insight into the Catholicity of the Church may be gleaned by examining her Apostolicity.   The Church is Apostolic in several different ways.   First the Church is Apostolic in her foundation.   The Apostles were the intermediaries through which Jesus Christ founded and built His Church, as we see from His future tense references to the Church in St. Matthew’s Gospel, His commissioning the Apostles, and the historical account of the Church’s founding in Acts.   Second the Church is Apostolic in that she has Apostolic authority. The Apostles were the governors that Christ set in authority over her from the beginning.   This is evident in the mission He gave them, in His instructions to them in the Gospels as to how they were to follow His example and lead as servant-leaders and not like temporal rulers, and in the history of the early Church in Acts.   Third, the Church is Apostolic in her priesthood.   The Church in her entirety is described as a priesthood in the New Testament, just as all of national Israel was called a priesthood in Deuteronomy.   Just as Israel, the nation of priests, was given a specific priesthood, the Levites, under the Aaronic High Priesthood, so the Church, the priesthood of believers, was given a specific priesthood, the Apostles, under their High Priest, Jesus Christ, a Priest after the Order of Melchizedek.     Fourthly, the Church is Apostolic in her doctrine.   This pertains to matters both of faith – that there are twelve Articles in the Creed is because there are twelve Apostles, the traditional account of its origins which although discounted by critical historians today is very early is that the Creed was written by the Twelve, each contributing an Article – and of practice, i.e., moral teaching.  


The Protestant Reformers emphasized the fourth of these ways in which the Church is Apostolic over all the others and, indeed, for most forms of Protestantism, this is the only kind of Apostolicity that matters.   Hyper-Protestantism takes this a step further and actively opposes and condemns the second and third types of Apostolicity.   They do so out of zeal without knowledge.     Let us take a further look at Apostolic authority and priesthood in the Church.


In the New Testament, the Apostles are the governors of the Church.   At first they are all together in the Church in Jerusalem.   There they establish the order of Deacons to assist in the distribution of goods in the sixth chapter of Acts.   Later, when the Church is scattered, with the Apostles themselves still initially centred in Jerusalem, we find that the Church in each of its various particular locations had local leaders who were subordinate to the Apostles.   The New Testament uses two terms for these.   One of these is πρεσβύτεροι (presybyteroi) which means “elders”.   This term the early Church borrowed from the Jewish synagogue although the Church clearly used it in a less literal sense (1 Tim. 4:12).   The other term was ἐπίσκοπος (episkopos) which means “overseer”.   While these two terms seem to have been mostly used interchangeably in the New Testament, the word for “elders” is usually plural and the word for “overseers” is usually singular, which might suggest that the Church in each location was led by a group of “elders” themselves led by a single “overseer”.   Either way, the elders/overseers answered to the Apostles and thus constituted a second order of ministry under the Apostles.   The ministry of the Church in the New Testament, therefore, was a hierarchy of three orders, with the Apostles themselves as the highest order, who governed the Church as a whole – the Catholic Church – and who ordained the members of the other orders.    That the Apostles had the higher authority was early illustrated in the eighth chapter of Acts.   After the scattering of the Jerusalem Church, St. Philip, again the deacon not the Apostle, went to Samaria, and many were converted by his preaching and baptized, but it was not until SS Peter and John came down from Jerusalem and laid their hands on the baptized converts – the New Testament does not use the word but this is what in later times would be called confirmation – that they received the Holy Ghost.   The laying on of the Apostles’ hands was also, as we saw in the account of the establishment of the Deacons, the method of ordination.    The question becomes what happened the authority of the Apostles?


The New Testament answers that question and for 1500 years every Church – not just the Church of Rome, but the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Assyrian Church of the East, the Oriental Orthodox Churches (Coptic, Armenian, etc.) – all the ancient Churches – could give the New Testament answer.   The Apostles, before they died, admitted certain of the elder-overseers into their own order, conferring on them their authority and governorship of the Church.   This happened before the New Testament was complete.   The Pastoral epistles of St. Paul, the epistles to SS Timothy and Titus, are written to two elder-overseers who had been given the Apostolic authority to ordain others.   The Apostolic authority has been passed on in the same way ever since.   Depending upon whether elder and overseer were completely interchangeable at first, or whether overseer denoted the person in charge assisted by the elders, either the overseers were the ones admitted to the Apostolic order or, at some point late in the first century, it was decided to reserve the term overseer for the new members of the Apostolic order.  Either way, those who exercise the Apostolic government of the Church have ever since been called bishops which is the Anglicization of the Greek word for overseer just as priest, an Anglicization of the Greek word for elder, has been the term for the ministers of the second order.


That ministers of the second order are called priests because this term is derived from their original Greek name of πρεσβύτεροι meaning elders is not what is meant by the Apostolic priesthood of the Church.   In 1 Peter, the word used to describe the Church as a royal “priesthood” is ἱεράτευμα (hierateuma) which has no relation to the word for elder.   It refers to the state of being a ἱερεύς (hiereus).   This is the basic Greek word for someone who ministers in a temple, offering prayers and sacrifices to God, if it was a Levitical Jewish priest, or to a god, if it was a pagan priest.   That it is consistently translated in English, not merely in the Bible but in other literature as well, by a word that ultimately comes from the Greek word for elder, testifies to the ancient association between the Christian ministry and temple service.   We have already explained why the use of the term priesthood for the entire Church does not preclude the Apostolic ministry’s being a more specific priesthood.  The entire nation of Israel was described as a nation of priests in book of Deuteronomy and yet a more specific priesthood was established for that nation.  Therefore the Church’s being a universal priesthood cannot preclude her ministers being priests in a more specific manner.  Indeed, the Old Testament allusions in the passage in 1 Peter make it even less logical to argue against the priesthood of the Apostolic ministry on the basis of the universal priesthood because the passage emphasizes continuity between Israel in the Old Testament and the Church in the New.


Hyper-Protestants maintain that a Christian priesthood offends against the teaching of the New Testament, particularly that of St. Paul in the epistle to the Hebrews, that Jesus Christ offered Himself as the One Sacrifice that effectively takes away sin and does away with the need for any other propitiatory blood sacrifices.   There is no need for priests, their argument goes, if there are no more sacrifices, an argument that could just as well be used against the universal priesthood of believers.   Or, they will argue, Jesus Christ is our Priest, therefore we need no other, another argument that works as well against the universal priesthood of believers.   Their position is, in part, a retaliation against the unwise language the Roman Church was using just before the Reformation, and which she dug her heels in to defend in the Council of Trent, about Christ’s Sacrifice being reoffered in the Eucharist in a propitiatory manner effective for the living and the dead.   The Hyper-Protestants, however, pushed the pendulum too far in the opposite direction.

In the Old Testament, God appointed the Levites as the specific priests of His nation of priests Israel.   He appointed various sacrifices to be offered for different reasons and at different times.   Not all of these had to do with sin.  As to what was to be offered, there were basically three types.   There were animal sacrifices, of course, which with the death of the animal and the blood sprinkled on the altar – and on the Day of Atonement on the Mercy Seat – prefigured Christ’s One Sacrifice.   There were also meal offerings – meat offerings in the Authorized Bible – of grain or flour, and drink offerings or libations, of wine.   Whether or not the offerings were associated with the sins of the people, the animals, the grain or flour, and the wine were brought by the people to the Tabernacle/Temple as if the people were offering the tribute of a meal to God.   What was not burned was reserved in accordance with the Mosaic Law as the food of the priests. 


In the New Testament, Jesus’ death on the Cross did what none of the sacrifices for sin which had to be repeated could ever do.   His shed blood sprinkled in the Holy of Holies of the Heavenly Tabernacle after which the earthly was patterned, did what the blood of bulls and goats could never do.   As the Agnes Dei, the Lamb of God as John the Baptist called Him, He took away the sins of the world once and for all.   By fulfilling what they prefigured, His death did away with animal sacrifices, blood sacrifices, sacrifices for sin, once and for all.   Again, it was sacrifices for sin that were ended by Christ’s One Sacrifice.  It was not the entire sacrificial system.   The rest of the sacrificial system was radically transformed and streamlined for the Church by Christ’s One Sacrifice.   Remember the meal and drink offerings.  Jesus told the multitude that came to Him in Capernaum after the feeding of the five thousand that He was the true Bread from Heaven, referencing the Manna of the Old Testament, the Bread of Life and that they would need to eat His flesh and drink His blood.   How could they do that, though, without violating all sorts of prohibitions, including the Noahic prohibition against drinking blood?   At the Last Supper on the night of His betrayal, Jesus revealed the answer to His Apostles as, at that Passover meal, He took the mazot, blessed it and broke it, and distributed it to them saying that it was His broken body, and similarly blessed the cup of wine before passing it around telling them that it was His blood of the New Covenant shed for many for the remission of sins.     The other elements of the Levitical sacrificial system, the grain offerings and the libations, were thus transformed into the bread and wine which would be the means by which the Church would be fed from the life-giving food of Christ’s Body and Blood, broken and shed for us, in the One True Sacrifice.     


Jesus’ instructions to the Apostles at the Last Supper therefore established them as the priesthood that would lead His Church which would be a priesthood in a more general sense.     Holy Communion in the Church under the New Covenant took the place of the Levitical sacrifices in Israel under the Old Covenant.   Consider one of the few passages in which Holy Communion is discussed at length if you doubt that this is the role of Holy Communion in the Church.   In 1 Corinthians 10 St. Paul, warning the Corinthians to flee idolatry, explains how the bread and cup of the Eucharist are the Body and Blood of Christ which make those who partake, the Church, one body.   (1 Cor. 10:16-17).   He then immediately points to national Israel and how they which eat of the sacrifices, i.e., the Levites, are partakers of the altar (v. 18).  He then talks about how the pagan Gentiles sacrifice to idols and those who partake of these sacrifices have fellowship with devils (vv. 19-20).   His point, spelled out in verse 21, is that partaking in the Lord’s cup and table is incompatible with partaking in the cup and table of devils.   What the form of his argument shows is that Holy Communion is in the Church what the Levitical sacrifices were in Israel and what sacrifices to idols were in the pagan religion(s).  This makes those whom Christ commissioned to administer the Sacrament, the Apostles, and those they subsequently ordained to partake in their ministry, priests. 


It is not that in the Eucharist Jesus’ Sacrifice is again be repeatedly offered up to God as a propitiation to take away sins.  That was done once and for all at the Cross.   It is rather that in the Eucharist that One True Sacrifice becomes the food of God’s people.   Jesus, by His death on the Cross, reversed the direction of the sacrificial system.   In His One Sacrifice, He was both the Priest Who offered the Sacrifice and the Victim Who was offered, but He was also God, the One Who received the offering.   This means that the One Sacrifice that actually took sin away was not something offered by sinful man to the God he had offended to appease Him, but an offering made on behalf of sinful man by the very One they had offended and so was  a gift from God to sinful man to reconcile him to Himself.    This effected a reversal in direction in the New Testament Sacramental system from the Old Testament sacrificial.  In the old system, the people brought the offerings to God through the priests.   In the new system, God gives to the people through the priests.    Christ’s Sacrifice, as the Sacrifice that propitiates God, i.e., satisfies the demands of His justice against sin, can never and need never, be repeated.   As the food that sustains believers, we are in constant need of it for we are frail as long as we are in the flesh in this world, and so God provides that we are fed by it repeatedly through the means of the Sacrament.   If the sacrificial system of the Old Covenant required priests, all the more does the Sacrament of the New Covenant for the substance is always greater than the shadow. (3)


Should a Hyper-Protestant object that the New Testament does not explicitly designate the Apostolic ministry a priesthood I will answer that this is not true.   In the penultimate chapter of the epistle to the Romans, St. Paul, in justifying the boldness with which he had written to them, speaks of the grace of God given to him that:


I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost. (Rom. 15:16)


The word rendered “minister” in our Authorized Bible is the accusative form of λειτουργός.   This word, in which the origins of our word “liturgy” can be seen, means “one who performs a λειτουργία, which word, compounded from the word for “people” and the word for “work” means “public service”.   A λειτουργός was a public servant, which could mean various things, among them civil servant and priest.   Obviously civil servant is not the intent here.   That priest is what is intended is spelled out by the verb translated “ministering” in our Authorized Bible, which word is a participle form of ἱερουργέω a verb meaning “to do the work of a priest” that is compounded from the word for priest and the word for work.   That the final clause further adds to St. Paul’s depiction of his ministry as a priestly one in this verse should be obvious even without reference to the Greek.


That this kind of language is not used more widely of the Apostolic ministry in the New Testament is most likely due to the fact that the bulk of the New Testament was composed prior to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70.   Up until that time the Temple was standing and the Old Testament sacrifices were being offered on its altar.   The New Testament writers, not wanting to confuse the Apostolic ministry with that of the Levites, avoided using terms like ἱερεύς for the Apostolic ministry for the most part while the Levitical priesthood was still operating.   In the verse in which St. Paul describes his ministry this way, it is emphasized that his mission is to the Gentiles, eliminating the potential for such confusion.


Whatever disagreements led to the breaking of fellowship in the fifth and eleventh centuries between the ancient Churches they all agree that the Church is a visible society of believers, governed by the Apostles and their successors the bishops, who with the order of presbyters under them, comprise a priesthood whose chief priestly duty is to feed the flock of God’s Church with the Body and Blood of Christ through the Sacrament of the Lord’s Table, a consensus shared by the Church Fathers and, as we have just seen, supported by the New Testament.


Turning back now to the fourth form of Apostolicity, the one emphasized by all Protestants and the only form of Apostolicity accepted by the Hyper-Protestants, this is Apostolicity of doctrine.   To the first and second generations of Church Fathers the idea that this could be separated from the Apostolic government of the Church would have been an alien idea.   The Apostles had guarded the Church against false doctrine, those who rebelled against the Apostolic teachings and government and broke away and formed their own groups were guilty of soul-damning schism and heresy, and those whom the Apostles admitted to their government as their successors were entrusted with continuing this ministry of guarding the flock against the wolves of heresy.   The formulation of the conciliar Creed in the first and second Ecumenical Councils of the fourth century was the outcome of the faithfulness of the bishops of the early centuries to this charge.   The Creed contains everything that we, faced with the challenge of liberalism in the last couple of centuries, have come to call the “fundamentals” or the “essentials” of the Faith.   The Hyper-Protestant attempt to fall back on Apostolicity of doctrine after rejecting everything else that has been regarded as essential to Apostolicity for 1500 years was doomed to fail, therefore, in that it required condemning as unfaithful to Apostolic doctrine a Church that confesses the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed confessed by all the ancient Churches.   The  truths over which the mainstream continental Reformation was fought – that the Scriptures as the written Word of God possess an infallible authority to which the Church is accountable, that salvation is a free gift given to us in Jesus Christ that we receive by faith rather than a reward that we must earn, and that as such we can be confident in our salvation rather than kept perpetually on a treadmill of good works running after a hope that is always just out of our reach like the grapes of Tantalus – are, of course, vitally important.   It was further necessary that they be re-emphasized when they were in the sixteenth century because by that time the Bishop of Rome had stooped to sending hucksters around to raise funds for his building project by literally selling salvation.   Hyper-Protestantism, however, goes beyond the Reformers’ legitimate outrage over the Bishop of Rome’s antics and how they were compromising the freedom of salvation by the grace of God  and condemns what is genuinely Catholic, in this case the Sacramental ministry of the Church’s Apostolic priesthood, shared by all the ancient pre-1500 Churches not just Rome.   There is no conflict between the Church’s Apostolic priesthood administering the grace of God through the Sacraments and the Gospel of salvation as a free gift given to us in Jesus Christ and received by faith provided it is understood that the Sacraments do the same thing as preaching the Word does, that is, brings the grace of God in the Gospel to us to be received by faith and are not “works” that we do to earn our salvation. (4)  Meanwhile, the Hyper Protestants who accuse Catholics – not just Romanists – of “works salvation”, generally teach either decisionism or Bezite theology.   Decisionism is when the Gospel is preached as a precursor to inviting people to be converted by making a decision of some sort, an act of their will, usually described in every possible way other than with the New Testament language of believing or faith.   Bezite theology (5) is the idea that God gave Jesus as a Saviour only for certain people whom He had pre-selected, that Jesus died only for those people, and that people can only know – with something less than the certainty that came with the Gospel in the doctrine of St. John (1 Jn. 5:13) and the Reformers – that they are part of the lucky few by seeing the evidence of their election in the fruit of grace in their lives, i.e., their works.    Both of these doctrines, are more serious offenses against the Gospel of God’s freely given grace in Jesus Christ and more worthy of being labelled “works salvation” than the Sacramental ministry of the Apostolic priesthood of the Catholic Church.   Hyper-Protestants, therefore, are like those hurling stones in a glass house, when they accuse Churches that confess the ancient Creeds of infidelity to Apostolic truth for teaching that God has ordained the Church, her Apostolic priesthood, and her Sacraments as means of bringing the grace of the Gospel to the faithful.


We turn now to the note of Unity.   We have already said much about this under the notes of Catholicity and Apostolicity.   We have seen that in the New Testament the Church was founded as a united visible society in Jerusalem, that when she was scattered in the persecution that followed after the martyrdom of St. Stephen she was still thought of as One Church.   Her members that fled to Damascus continued to meet there as the Church and the Church they met as was not thought of as a new Church distinct from that back in Jerusalem nor as being a part of the Church but as being the Church, the whole unified society, even though most of her members were elsewhere and her governors, the Apostles, were back in Jerusalem.   This way of looking at her persists throughout the New Testament.   The word Church is pluralized only when the intent is to indicate the Church in more than one location but not necessarily the whole Church in all locations.   Otherwise the Church in each location is the Church.   St. Paul never writes to “the part of the Church” that is in Galatia, Rome, etc.   He writes to the Church in each of these places as the whole society.   This will be important to remember when we come to consider what has happened to the Unity of the Church through history.


First, however, let us consider a few things that St. Paul has to say about the Unity of the Church.   In his epistle to the Ephesians one of the Apostle’s key themes is the “mystery” whereby in the Church, Gentiles and Jews are united into one body, and he has already discussed this at length by the time we get to the fourth chapter.   In that chapter he urges them to endeavour “to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (v. 3). The Holy Ghost here is shown to be the source of the unity of the Church, something that Jesus Himself had alluded to in His prayer on the night of His betrayal, and which St. Paul would immediately go on to reiterate in saying “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling” (v. 4).   The image here is of how a body and the spirit that animates a body together make up a whole person.   The Holy Ghost is the Spirit that dwells in the Body that is the Church and makes her One Body.   At this point we might recall that the ninth Article belongs to the section of the Creed that pertains to the Holy Ghost in which the Church is the first thing confessed after the direct confession of the Holy Ghost Himself.   The most important part of the ministry of the Holy Ghost is the effecting of the union of believers with Christ in His Body, the Church.


St. Paul proceeds to list other unities of the Church – “One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (vv. 5-6).   The Holy Ghost Who indwells the Church, making her One Body, unites her with her One Lord, Jesus Christ through the one faith she confesses and the one baptism that is the visible sign of union with Christ and His Church being to the New Covenant what Circumcision was to the Old (Col. 2:11-12), and to complete the Trinitarian Unity, she is also united to her God, the Father, Who is above, through, and in her.    To complete the picture we can add to this what we have already seen how elsewhere in writing to the Corinthians Saint Paul speaks of how we are One Body because we all share in the one bread of Holy Communion.   Clearly St. Paul’s idea of the Church as the One Body of Christ is world’s removed from any notion of an invisible connection between believers as individuals whose Christianity is a “personal relationship”, i.e., one-on-one between the individual believer and Jesus Christ and is rather the Catholic view held by all the ancient pre-Reformation Churches.


Speaking of the ancient pre-Reformation Churches in the plural, however, brings us around to a sticky question concerning the Unity of the Church.    What are we to make of the fact that there are a plurality of Churches, each of which has organic continuity with the original Church in Jerusalem (6), each of which confesses the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed, in each of which the Gospel Sacraments are administered by a priesthood ordained and governed by bishops whose governing and priestly authority goes back to the Apostles, each of which, however, regards herself as the One Church, not in the New Testament sense that the Church in Ephesus and the Church in Colossae were each herself the One Church but not to the exclusion of the other, but in the sense of being the Catholic Church, outside of which there are no other?


To answer this we must consider what the New Testament has to say about schism.   Σχίσμα, to which our English word “scissors” is etymologically related, means “a cleft, rent, or division”.  It occurs in the New Testament where it is usually translated by words like “rent”, “tear” or “division” in our Authorized Bible although it is transliterated in 1 Corinthians 12:25 which speaks of ecclesiastical schism.   Ecclesiastical schism is treated very seriously in the New Testament.   It is a sin against the Unity of the Body of Christ.   There are two types of ecclesiastical schism.   These are schism within the Church, and schism from the Church.   The first is the type of schism St. Paul rebukes as having formed within the Church in Corinth.   Factions or parties had developed, each claiming to adhere to a different teacher – teachers who would have joined St. Paul in rebuking this factionalism – but it had not reached the point where anybody had left the Church.


It is St. John who writes about schism from the Church in his first epistle.   He does not use the word, but he describes the thing very well:


Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.  They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. (1 Jn. 2:18-19)


Obviously, this type of schism is a far more serious offense against the Unity of the Church than schism within the Church.   St. John does not write to the schismatics calling on them to repent.  He writes about the schismatics in the harshest of terms to the Church which these schismatics are no longer part of, warning the Church against them.   These schismatics were guilty, not just of schism, but of heresy – in this case the denial that Jesus is the Christ (v. 22).


In the earliest centuries the Church had to deal with both types of schism.   Indeed, in what is probably the earliest extra-Scriptural Christian document extent, one that was considered for a time for inclusion in the canon, St. Paul’s companion St. Clement, who was Bishop of Rome around the time St. John was finishing the New Testament canon with the Book of Revelation, wrote to the Corinthian Church to rebuke them for having taken the schism against which St. Paul had written to the extreme of deposing their ordained leaders, which St. Clement likened to the rebellion of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram against Moses in the wilderness.   Slightly over a decade later, St. Ignatius of Antioch in his epistles stressed the need for each of the Churches to which he wrote to adhere firmly and loyally to their bishop and his presbyters in order to remain true to the Apostolic faith, making the same connection between departure from the Apostolic leadership of the Church and departure from the faith that his own teacher, St. John the Apostle, had made.   A second generation disciple of St. John, St. Irenaeus of Lyon who had sat under St. Polycarp’s ministry in the Church of Smyrna, is most remembered today for his Adversus Haereses which discusses several of the heretical sects that had departed from the Church in schism in the first century and a half of Christianity.  He follows St. Justin Martyr in tracing the origins of these back to the Simon Magus who had been baptized by St. Philip in the Samaritan Church in the eighth chapter of Acts before being rebuked by St. Peter for trying to purchase the Apostolic authority.   He spells out the doctrine of Apostolic succession and closely connects it with the episcopate’s role in safeguarding the orthodoxy of the faith.


When the Church of Rome and the Eastern Orthodox Church excommunicated each other in the middle of the eleventh century it has ever since been called the Great Schism.   Each side regarded it as a schism from the Church rather than a schism within the Church and took the position that they were the Church and the other side was guilty of schism and now outside the Church.   An examination of the history of the Schism and the issues at stake points to the conclusion that both sides are mistaken on this, that neither side was guilty of the sort of thing St. John wrote about, both were and still are guilty of the other kind of schism, and that thus neither are the One Church in Catholic sense, both are the One Church in the non-exclusionary sense that the Church in Philippi and the Church in Thessalonica were each the One Church in the New Testament, and that their mutual excommunications of each other were on both sides an abuse of the Keys neither of which were therefore respected in Heaven.    A similar conclusion, I think can be drawn about the earlier schism between the Churches that would not agree to the Definition of Chalcedon and the Chalcedonian Churches, especially since recent dialogue has shown that the non-Chalcedonian Churches do not teach the Monophysite heresy condemned by the fouth Ecumenical Council as the Chalecedonian Churches had until recently thought they did.   With regards to the Protestant Reformation, the English Church to which I belong made every effort in her Reformation to retain the Apostolic government and priesthood and the Gospel Sacraments and not to start a secession movement from the Catholic Church but merely to no longer acknowledge the universal jurisdiction that the Bishop of Rome, contrary to the canons of the Ecumenical Councils, and the practice of the early centuries of Christianity, had usurped.   The Church of Rome’s excommunication of the English Church was, therefore, another abuse of the Keys that is not respected in Heaven and, indeed, the Roman Church was so corrupt and abusive of the Keys in the sixteenth century that all of her excommunications of the Protestants can be similarly disregarded, even though with a few exceptions, such as in the Kingdom of Sweden, the Magisterial Reformation was not conducted with such care to maintain continuity and the Apostolic order as in England, and the fanatics who declared that the Magisterial Reformation had not gone far enough and started their own sects in secessionist movements can hardly avoid the charge that they committed schism from the Church rather than within it.   The Roman Church has made arguments against the validity of the English Church’s Apostolic orders and Sacraments that have repeatedly and soundly been rebutted, although sadly, in the last century, Anglican leaders in the UK and North America have gone out of their way to undermine us as a Church by breaking from Catholic – not Roman, Catholic by St. Vincent of Lerins’ description of that which is held by the Church “everywhere, at all time, and by all” – teaching and practice in adopting liberal positions on a number of matters which all have to do with sex in one way or another – contraception, ordaining women to the priesthood and episcopate, promoting the increasingly absurd demands of the alphabet soup gang, etc.   Triumphant as the liberals seem to be in the English Church in the UK, Canada, and United States right now, as the Arians seemed to be in much of the period between the first two Ecumenical Councils in the fourth century, orthodoxy prevails in the worldwide Anglican Communion which inspires hope that it will overcome here too.


The English Church never claimed to be the One Church in the sense of being the Catholic Church to the exclusion of all others, merely to be what she was, the One Church in her jurisdiction in the same way the Galatian, Corinthian, Thessalonian, Churches were the One Church in theirs.  In the nineteenth century, the Reverend William Palmer explained the claims of the English Church with regards to herself and to other Churches that had the Apostolic ministry and confessed the orthodox faith in the Creed in terms of branches on a single tree.    While his Treatise on the Church of Christ (1838) was overall helpful and needed, the metaphor created the potential for confusion in that it is very similar to a metaphor used in the New Testament in regards to a different sticky aspect of the Unity of the Church.   This is the question of the relationship between Old Testament Israel and the New Testament Church.


This is a difficult question for a number of reasons.   Israel and the Church are described in the Bible in ways that are at times the polar opposite of each other.   Israel was a nation in the ethnic sense of the word – a people with a common bloodline, common language, common religion, etc. – that was told by God to be separate and distinct from the nations around them, to the point of wearing distinct attire and eating a distinct diet.   The Church, by contrast, is a society in which people from every tribe and nation are joined in One with no distinction between them.   These are hardly descriptions of the same thing, yet both are called the People of God, and St. Peter in his account of the Church as the People of God, written to Churches that were largely Jewish in their membership, uses the language of Old Testament Israel in a way that indicates continuity between Israel and the Church.   St. Paul also speaks of continuity between Israel and the Church when he speaks of Israel as an olive tree, from which branches – the Jews who did not believe in Jesus - were cut off and to which other branches – the Gentiles who believed in Jesus – were added, thus making the Church the continuation of Israel.   The Church therefore has to be the continuation of Israel in some sense.    She is neither something completely new, created to replace Israel after God cast her off forever in judgement for rejecting Christ, as has sometimes been taught based on the Parable of the Vineyard, nor is she one of two distinct peoples of God co-existing with the other Israel at the same time as dispensationalists teach.   Both of these extremes are precluded by St. Paul’s metaphor. 


If the Church is somehow a continuation of Israel, how then do we explain the fact that Jesus spoke of her in the future tense as something He would build and the New Testament seems quite clear that she began on Pentecost when the Holy Ghost came down and united the disciples with the Ascended Christ in One Body?


There are two aspects to the continuity of Israel and the Church.   When the Church was founded on Pentecost all of her members were Jews who believe in Jesus.  The Church’s membership consisted strictly of believing Jews until the Church in Jerusalem was scattered after St. Stephen’s martyrdom.   After this, Samaritans were added to the Church under the ministry of St. Philip, then, after the Holy Ghost sent St. Peter to preach to Cornelius the centurion, the Gentiles were added, having also received the Holy Ghost after believing and being baptized.   In this early history of the Church we can see what St. Paul was talking about with his metaphor.   The Church was formed from the believing remnant of Israel to which others were later added.   St. Paul used the metaphor to warn Gentile believers who had become the majority in the Church not to be arrogant towards the Jews.   This warning was for Gentile believers qua Gentiles, not to the Church qua Church.   This needs to be understood because all metaphors can be stretched too far.   Every time something in the Old Testament corresponds to something in the New, that which is in the Old Testament is a type and shadow of that which is in the New, which is the reality and substance.  Israel is the type and shadow, the Church is the reality and the substance.   The danger in stretching the olive tree metaphor is of reversing this.


The other aspect of the continuity of Israel and the Church has to do with the fact that when the Church was founded at Pentecost by the Holy Ghost uniting the disciples on earth in One Body with their head the Ascended Christ in Heaven the believers in the Old Testament, who had been retroactively redeemed by Christ in the Atonement and taken to Heaven with Him after the Harrowing of Hell (Hades), were similarly joined by the Holy Ghost to the same Church.   In the epistle to the Hebrews, St. Paul – yes, he wrote Hebrews – provides numerous examples, in the eleventh chapter, of Old Testament figures living out their faith, whom he describes at the beginning of the twelfth chapter as “so great a cloud of witnesses” to us who are running the race of faith in the present.   Later in the chapter he describes the destination of this race, the heavenly Jerusalem where the “general assembly and church of the firstborn” await “the spirits of just men made perfect” (Heb. 12:22-23).   While this might seem like an exception to what I said earlier about Ἐκκλησία never being used with the meaning of “the invisible Church” in the New Testament what we see here is not the “invisible Church” concept of theology, an aggregate of individual believers as opposed to an organized society, but the idea denoted by the expression “The Communion of Saints” in the Apostles’ Creed.  This is the ultimate meaning of Unity as it pertains to the Church.   The society Jesus Christ founded, His Church, is a visible and organized society, but is present not just on the earth visible to us, but in Heaven which is not.  (7)


The final note of the Church is Holiness.   This is a word that is often confused with “righteousness” and “purity”.   These words denote qualities associated with Holiness rather than Holiness itself.   The words in Greek and Latin that we translate as Holy denote being separate and apart.   To be separate and apart means that there has to be something from which you are separate and apart.   We might identify that something as sin or, if we want to be more general, that which is bad or evil, and we would not be entirely wrong but this is not the entire picture.   God is Holy.  In the hymn of the Seraphim in the sixth chapter of Isaiah, God is thrice proclaimed to be Holy.   God was Holy, however, before any part of His Creation fell into sin.   Holiness, therefore, is more than just separation from sin.   We might say that it is separation from the common and mundane.   In the case of that which is created, the separation from that is Holiness is the result of a separation unto, namely separation unto God.   God commanded the Israelites to keep the Sabbath, the seventh day, Holy.   This did not mean “don’t sin on Saturday”.  They weren’t supposed to sin any day.   It meant that they were to reserve that day for God and rest on it from that which was not sinful but appropriate to every other day, particularly work.   It is the Lord’s Day, the first day of the week, that we keep as Holy in the Church because it is the day of the Resurrection.   We keep it Holy by reserving it for meeting in the Church to worship God, hear the Word preached, and partake of the Lord’s Table.   In the Tabernacle of Israel, God ordained that various items be made and placed that were to be consecrated as Holy, which meant that they were to be used only in His service and not put to ordinary use.   In the Church we consecrate spaces, such as the buildings in which we meet, for God’s use.   When we confess that the Church is Holy in the Creed we mean that she is the society which God founded and established as His Own.   The Church, which remember means assembly or congregation, is not called to meet together for political, economic, social, or cultural reasons, although her meeting together may end up having impact in these areas, but is called together to worship God, to offer up our prayers, to hear God’s Word taught and proclaimed, and to partake of the Sacrament of the Lord’s Table.   Purity and righteousness, may, and we trust, pray, and hope will, ensue, but it is this being set apart from worldly – even in the non-morally negative sense of the word – ends, and being set apart unto God, and of course in her being indwelt by the Holy Ghost in which the Church’s Holiness lies.





(1)     This alternate image of the Church as the future Bride of Christ is found in prophetic passages and parables in St. Matthew’s Gospel and the book of Revelation.   The passages in St. Paul that use similar marriage imagery speak of the present relationship between Christ and His Church.

(2)     There is a textual discrepancy here with some manuscripts containing the singular.

(3)     That it is to the New Testament, where the substantial is to be found, rather than the shadowy types of the Old Testament, that we must look to understand the true nature of priesthood is a point stressed by R. C. Moberly in Ministerial Priesthood: Chapters (Preliminary to a Study of the Ordinal) On the Rationale of Ministry and the Meaning of Christian Priesthood, 1910.

(4)     For a good explanation of how the Sacraments do this see Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, Volume III, 1953, in particular the section entitled “The Means of Grace”, pp. 101-219, and the follow up sections on “Law and Gospel”, pp. 220-252, “Holy Baptism”, pp. 253-289, and “The Lord’s Supper”, pp. 290-393.    Or if you prefer a shorter version you can check out John Theodore Mueller’s work of the same title, published as a one volume epitome of Pieper’s in 1936 almost two decades before the English version of Pieper’s was available (the original German had been published from 1917-1924).   Franz Pieper had been professor of theology and president of Concordia Theological Seminary and a past president of the Missouri Synod of the Lutherans.   This work’s influence in the Missouri Synod may help explain their unusual success in combatting liberalism in the last century.   Being German Lutheran rather than Scandanavian Lutheran it is very deficient in its ecclesiology, but is excellent in its soteriology.

(5)     What I have here called Bezite theology is more commonly known as “Calvinism”.   Those who teach this sort of theology are more properly the disciples of Theodore Beza, however, than of John Calvin.   While Calvin had a strong view of election and predestination is predicated on God’s choice rather than anything in us he taught that God worked His purposes in election through the means of a Gospel which proclaimed to everybody that God had given them a Saviour in Jesus and that Jesus had died for them.   He warned that that it was dangerous to consider election except by looking at Christ and that looking for proof of election in ourselves was the road to perdition. He told people worried about whether they were part of God’s elect to look to Christ and they would see their election reflected back in Him as a mirror.  (Institutes of the Christian Religion, III.24.v) 

(6)     The Church was founded as a community in Jerusalem.  When her members were scattered, wherever they found themselves they continued to meet as the Church, and thus those meetings in other places were the Church in organic continuity with the Church in Jerusalem, the same society now meeting elsewhere whether other members were joined to her in the same way as they originally had been in Jerusalem.   This is what is meant by organic continuity.   It means that the society is organically the same as the original.  This is a distinct concept from Apostolic succession although the two are related.   Apostolic succession is the admission of others to the governing authority originally held by the Apostles by those to whom it had already been passed on from the Apostles.   Apostolic succession is organic continuity as it pertains to the governing order of the Church rather than as it pertains to the society as a whole. Apostolic succession has generally stood for both meanings throughout Church history because there cannot be Apostolic succession where organic continuity of the Church is absent and so Apostolic succession guarantees organic continuity.

(7)     “No such antithetic contrast between the visible Church and an invisible one made up of the elect can be found in the New Testament.  The elect are there repeatedly identified with the baptized members of the visible Church (Eph. 1:4-6; Col. 3:12; 1 Thess. 1:4,; 1 Pet. 1:2; 2:9; 5:13), and the application of the term “Church” to those who attain to the heavenly Jerusalem (Heb. 12:22-23) plainly does not denote another Church, separable from the visible Church, but (like the local applications above mentioned) is a relative and analogical designation of an assembly yonder that is a true part and embodiment of the universal Church.   That not all those who now belong to the visible Church will enter the heavenly Jerusalem is plainly set forth in Scripture (Heb. 6:4-6; cf. Matt. 13:24-30, 41-42; John 15:6; 1 Cor. 9:27; Phil. 2:12; 1 Pet. 4:17-18), but the explanation lies in their being cut off from the Church because of their incurable wickedness, not in there being a separate ekklesia, with other than baptismal conditions of admission.   In later parlance, the Church “militant,”, “expectant,” and “triumphant” is one ekklesia, into which entrance is obtained by Baptism, from which obstinate sinners will be finally cut off, and the perfection of which is realized in its triumphant part and stage in Heaven (Eph. 5:25-23; Rev. 19:7-9).   Francis J. Hall, Anglican Dogmatics, Vol. II, 2021, p. 316.  This is a condensed 2 volume edition of what was originally published in ten volumes as Dogmatic Theology from 1907-1922, the condensing being done by John A. Porter.  It was published by Nashotah House Press.   This is an unusual work in that in the Anglican tradition works that cover multiple doctrines tend to take the form of commentaries on either the Creed or the Articles of Religion and when they do take this format are seldom called Dogmatics  or Dogmatic Theology for which Dogmatics is short.   Dogmatic Theology is the term preferred in continental Europe and the languages spoken there – Pieper’s Christian Dogmatics referenced in footnote 3, vide supra, was originally written in German - for what is usually called Systematic Theology in English, although there has been a recent tendency to avoid using either “Systematic” or “Dogmatic”, presumably with “Theology” being the next word to be dropped. Hall's Anglican Dogmatics is a good complement to Pieper's Lutheran one, being very strong in the area where Pieper is weak.