Critique of THE PROTESTANT'S DILEMMA by Devin Rose
Chapter 2 - The Papacy
The Church had a pope, a visible head, from the beginning. In fact, we
know the names and approximate dates of all of the popes, all the way
back to the first century: Peter first, then Linus, Anacletus, and
Clement I. But sometime between the first centuries of the Church and
the Protestant Reformation in the 1500s, the papacy as an office must
have become corrupted, and God revoked his authority from it.
Protestants diverge on myriad doctrines, but on one issue they stand
fully unified: They reject the notion that the pope has any authority
from God. They don’t need a pope; they don’t want a pope, and, they
say, neither does God.
Note: God never appointed the office of pope per the Apostle Paul.
And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second
prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings,
helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 1 Corinthians 12:28.
Note: The author continually makes false assumptions.
Page 36: The pope is a mere man
and thus fallible. God wouldn’t have relied on a string of such men to
lead his Church. Instead, he providentially had the apostles record
divine truth in the Bible, where all Christians could find it and know
that it is a “touchstone” to the apostles themselves (and therefore to
Christ). A touchstone is something used to test the veracity of purity
of a substance. Protestants believe that this is exactly what God gave
us as our sole infallible rule of faith. No pope necessary.
Note: Original sin has always been with all humans including the Apostles.
Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it
from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!” But He turned and said
to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are
not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.” Matthew
Page 36: The historical fact of
the papacy throughout every Christian century makes a compelling case
that it was intended to be a perpetual office within the institution
that Christ built. The pope presided over or sent his legates to
ecumenical councils and confirmed (or refused confirmation) of their
decisions, and members of the Church accepted these decrees as binding.
Note: The office of pope did not exist before the 2nd century A.D.
It seems that at first the terms "episcopos" and "presbyter" were used
interchangeably. The consensus among scholars has been that, at the
turn of the 1st and 2nd centuries, local congregations were led by
bishops and presbyters whose offices were overlapping or
indistinguishable. Some say that there was probably "no single
'monarchical' bishop in Rome before the middle of the 2nd century...and
likely later." Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
Pages 36-37: But what is the
evidence that Peter was in Rome and established a church there? First,
while the Bible does not explicitly say “Peter was the bishop of Rome,”
in Peter’s first epistle he ends by saying, “She who is at Babylon, who
is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark” (1
Peter 5:13). We know from its usage in the book of Revelation that
Babylon was a code word for Rome. Peter chose to be subtle here, since
the Christians were being persecuted in Rome, and he, its leader, had
to be careful. While this does not prove Peter was in Rome, it is
biblical evidence for the claim.
Note: Peter never referred to himself as the pope or the bishop of Rome.
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, 1 Peter 1:1.
Page 37: Several early
Christians testify to the existence of the bishop of Rome, from Peter
onward. In the 100s, Irenaeus spoke of the church in Rome founded by
the apostles Peter and Paul and went on to describe the succession of
bishops from there: The blessed apostles, then, having founded and
built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of
the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to
Timothy. To him succeeded Analetus; and after him, in the third place
from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric.
Note: The Church at Rome was not founded by the Apostles Peter and Paul.
The Acts of the Apostles claims that the Jewish Christian couple
Priscilla and Aquila had recently come from Rome to Corinth when, in
about the year 50, Paul reached the latter city, indicating that belief
in Jesus in Rome had preceded Paul. In the second century Irenaeus of
Lyons, reflecting the ancient view that the church could not be fully
present anywhere without a bishop, recorded that Peter and Paul had
been the founders of the Church in Rome and had appointed Linus as
bishop. While the church in Rome was already flourishing when Paul
wrote his Epistle to the Romans to them from Corinth, about 57, he
greets some fifty people in Rome by name, but not Peter whom he knew.
There is also no mention of Peter in Rome later during Paul's two-year
stay there in Acts 28, about 60–62. Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
Page 38: Christ is the ultimate
foundation, and he chose the apostles as the foundational layer for the
Church. These are men and therefore, it is true, open to corruption.
But God by his power protected these men from error in their teachings,
which even Protestants believe – for they accept the scriptures written
by these men.
Note: The Apostle Paul confronted the Apostle Peter for his hypocrisy.
But when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of
the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live
in the manner of Gentiles and not as the Jews, why do you compel
Gentiles to live as Jews? We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of
the Gentiles, knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the
law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ
Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the
works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be
justified. Galatians 2:14-16.
Page 38: If Protestantism is
true, then after 1,500 years of having a bishop of Rome called the
prince of the apostles, the successor of Peter to whom Christ gave the
keys to the kingdom of heaven (cf. Matt. 16: 19), God eradicated the
office of the papacy. No longer would his Church have a leader, a
“servant of the servants of God.” Instead, God left his Church to
follow whatever leaders declared themselves to be so in whatever
churches they founded on the basis of their own authority or personal
Note: The Apostle Peter considered the Apostle Paul to be the prince of the apostles.
Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be
found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; and consider that
the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother
Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, as also
in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are
some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people
twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the
Scriptures. 2 Peter 3:14-16.
WORD FAITH INDEX
CATHOLIC CHURCH INDEX