Concept, Judgment, and Dogmatic Relativism
W. H. Marshner
It is a central claim of Christianity that certain teachings formulated in the Mediterranean world two thousand years ago are divinely revealed. It is also a central claim that this revelation has been grasped and repeated ever since as the “same Gospel” — an achievement which heresies did not prevent and from which legitimate developments did not detract.
Traditionally, these two claims have been understood to demand the following explanation: the expressions used in formulating the original teachings have been understood within the main body of the Church with enough invariance, over all the intervening centuries and in widely different civilizations, to ensure that the “same doctrine” has been handed down. Continue reading “Concept, Judgment, and Dogmatic Relativism”
Every theory of doctrinal development makes some appeal to the concept of implicit information. But no theologian or Church historian has bothered to explore this concept philosophically with the contemporary tools for doing so. I refer to tools such as an up-to-date philosophy of language and an up-to-date logic of significance and context. It was to fill this lack that “On the Implicit” was written in the mid-1980s. Continue reading “On The Implicit”
THE DOGMA OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION IN MODERN ECCLESIOLOGY: PROLEGOMENA
WILLIAM H. MARSHNER
Front Royal, Virginia
What does the Immaculate Conception have to do with the mystery of the Church? How can it help us to evaluate some recent directions in ecclesiology?
These initial questions can be taken in two senses. (1) How does the definition of the Immaculate Conception illuminate the Church’s charism of truth? How does the papal deed of 1854 help us to evaluate certain recent theories of dogma, tradition and magisterium? (2) How does the grace itself of the Immaculate Conception clarify the “new being” to which all men are called in the Church of Christ? How does the Marian privilege serve as a criterion for an adequate ecclesiology?
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The Defense of Dogma
W. H. Marshner
REASONS FOR HOPE
© Christendom Educational Corporation 1978
Christendom College Press
In today’s world especially since the advent of Modernism, it is insufficient to simply define the authority of the pope and leave the faithful to follow his teachings. It is unfortunately fashionable to deny that Church teachings are to be taken literally, fashionable in other words, to retain the precise wording of dogmatic formulations while interpreting them in purely symbolic or metaphorical terms. Therefore, a further defense is necessary, a defense which is at times technical, but nonetheless indispensable: it is the defense that Church teachings mean what they say. And in order to appreciate the ways in which dogma is under attack today—some of them quite subtle—and to meet those attacks, we must begin by taking special pains to be fully clear about exactly what dogma is.
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A Formula To End All Formulas
W. H. MARSHNER
September 4, 1975
A San Francisco novelty company has succeeded where yours truly and (I hate to say it, but) all the other Wanderer writers have consistently failed. This company has been able to put the entire problem of dogmatic relativism into 27 simple words. Here they are:
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The Scripture Game II
W. H. MARSHNER
Vol. V. No. 5
The first part of this commentary on modem biblical scholarship argued that the Catholic biblical revival is producing suspicious fruits because the philological-critical method of exegesis has been misapplied to the task of Christian exegesis. It remains to show what Christian exegesis is, why it is theologically inevitable and how it can be defended against the charge of obscurantism.
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The Scripture Game
W. H. MARSHNER
Vol. V. No. 4
No Christian can object to increasing the knowledge or the influence of Sacred Scripture. Yet the wide diversity of benefits that are expected to flow from the current “progress” in biblical studies suggests anything but unanimity as to how the subject ought to be approached. Continue reading “The Scripture Game”