For those of you who know me personally or have seen a lot of my posts keep getting deleted, you know that I change my beliefs quite frequently. I can be a bit of a roller coaster at times. So what is it exactly I believe? Well, to be perfectly honest, I can’t tell you that what I currently believe right now will be what I believe a few years down the road or even a month from now but this at least is what I currently believe right now.
I am not sola scriptura. I adhere to the Roman Catholic Catechism as well as the Bible. I do believe that the entire Bible in its 73 books is completely and wholly inspired. I do not believe that all of it is to be taken literally or word for word. Some have tried to point out to me how the narrative books in the Bible are really history and are 100% accurate (Genesis 1-11, The Book of Ruth, Daniel, The Exodus, etc.). I don’t buy it. I also believe that the primary purpose of Jesus’s miracles (especially in the book of John) aren’t meant to be taken historically but rather more symbolically and spiritually. I do believe in the literal death on the cross and resurrection of Jesus the Christ who’s name in Hebrew is Yahushua the Messiah. I believe in the full spiritual truth of the Bible and respect the historical context in which it was written.
I maintain to the Christus Victor understanding of the atonement. Although there are many acceptable versions of atonement theology out there I believe that the Christus Victor theory is the most accurate and the most explanatory. In addition to this, I also acknowledge that there are many interpretations of Christus Victor as well. Although the model that is proposed by many Protestant scholars including John Piper and N.T. Wright called penal substitutionary atonement I find to be the most deficient explanation of the atonement. I believe that N.T. Wright comes close to the truth about the atonement but I simply do not see any way for his position to be completely reconciled together in light of the whole revelation given to us.
I am a partial-preterist. What I mean by partial-preterist is I mean that all the things in Revelation up until the re-release of Satan after the millenial reign is fulfilled. Satan’s binding was when Christ came to overthrow this power. As Augustine writes:
The Lord Jesus Christ Himself says, No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man — meaning by the strong man the devil, because he had power to take captive the human race; and meaning by his goods which he was to take, those who had been held by the devil in various sins and iniquities, but were to become believers in Himself. It was then for the binding of this strong one that the apostle saw in the Apocalypse an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the abyss, and a chain in his hand. And he laid hold, he says, on the dragon, that old serpent, which is called the devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,— that is, bridled and restrained his power so that he could not seduce and gain possession of those who were to be freed. (City of God, XX, 7)
So Revelation is fulfilled at least up until the millenial reign. I believe the end of Rome’s persecution of Christians, also, in a sense, ended the reign of the Devil over God’s people and brought in the first “resurrection” which was the establishment of the Church. I still maintain the full bodily return of Christ and I still maintain the full bodily resurrection that is to come. Revelation has a lot of symbols in it and I do not believe that all of it is to be taken literally word for word.
Mariology and Veneration of the Saints
As a former anti-Trinitarian, I now maintain to the teaching of the Trinity. I believe that Mary was “full of grace” (Luke 1:28, New Advent Bible) and I believe that Original Sin is the concept that all men are born into a state of privation of grace as a result of our first parents’ (whoever each of ours may be) rebellion against God which is detailed in the symbolic story of Genesis 2:5-3. As such, I also believe that the immaculate conception is accurate as detailed in Catechism 491. Although I do not hold Eastern Orthodox Christians as heretics for denying this because they also focus on an altogether different aspect of Original Sin. Mary was sinless and she followed Jesus in her whole life. She died and was bodily raised into Heaven according to the Assumption/Dormition of Mary. In addition to this, I believe that Job 5:1 supports the intercession of Saints and I believe that we are to venerate the work that God has done in all of them by praying to them and remembering them.
I believe in theosis as stated in Catechism 460.
The Word became flesh to make us “partakers of the divine nature”: “For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God.” “For the Son of God became man so that we might become God.” “The only-begotten Son of God, wanting to make us sharers in his divinity, assumed our nature, so that he, made man, might make men gods.”
I can’t think of anything else to tell you right now other than that I no longer believe Paul was so anti-women after all. I know it’s been a roller coaster ride with me, but this is what I believe. In addition to this, I would probably consider myself more of a culture Catholic due to the fact that I haven’t officially converted. I just agree with their beliefs. I am also leaning more toward Byzantine Catholicism than Roman Catholicism right now although I don’t have access to a Byzantine Catechism right now.
Well, at least I wanted to believe this at one point in my life.