The Roman Councils … part 1
First Ecumenical Council of the Catholic Church (325 A.D.)
In the prior volumes we discussed the arrogant announcements of Easter replacing The Passover Feast and the replacement of Sabbath with the Sun-day observance. Let us take a look at the events of the council, their findings and how it compares to the word of God.
“The Council was opened by Constantine with the greatest solemnity. The emperor waited until all the bishops had taken their seats before making his entry. He was clad in gold and covered with precious stones in the fashion of an Oriental sovereign. A chair of gold had been made ready for him, and when he had taken his place the bishops seated themselves.” ~ Catholic Encyclopedia
Ezekiel 16:13-17 “Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver; and thy raiment was of fine linen, and silk, and broidered work; thou didst eat fine flour, and honey, and oil: and thou wast exceeding beautiful, and thou didst prosper into a kingdom. And thy renown went forth among the heathen for thy beauty: for it was perfect through my comeliness, which I had put upon thee, saith the Lord God. But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown, and pouredst out thy fornications on every one that passed by; his it was. And of thy garments thou didst take, and deckedst thy high places with divers colours, and playedst the harlot thereupon: the like things shall not come, neither shall it be so. Thou hast also taken thy fair jewels of my gold and of my silver, which I had given thee, and madest to thyself images of men, and didst commit whoredom with them.”
The priesthood of Leviticus had been set apart by YHWH and adorned to the acceptance of YHWH for His presence. They took this adornment to the sinful extent and saw themselves as above the law they represented. The priests took upon themselves the right to amend and expound the instructions to create an illusion of control over the people. Constantine and his Roman Church are repeating this same sinful nature.
The determination of a Cleric or Priest: A person who has been legitimately received into the ranks of the clergy. By clergy in the strict sense is meant the entire ecclesiastical hierarchy. “Christ did not give to all the faithful power to administer His sacraments, except in the case of baptism and matrimony, or to offer public worship. He established His Church as a visible, external, and perfect society; hence He conferred on its hierarchy the right to legislate for the good of that society.”
They determined the powers of the church as:
-the right to frame and sanction laws which it considers useful or necessary, i.e. legislative power;
-the right to judge how the faithful observe these laws i.e. judicial power;
-the right to enforce obedience, and to punish disobedience to its laws i.e. coercive power;
-the right to make all due provision for the proper celebration of worship, i.e. administrative power.
First Council of Constantinople (381 A.D.)
The first historically known Bishop of Byzantium is St. Metrophanes (306-314), yet it wasn’t until the Second Ecumenical Council (Council of Constantinople) gave the Bishop of Constantinople the first place after the Bishop of Rome. Hundreds of churches and monasteries, thousands of clerics, of monks, and nuns, attested an intensely religious life. Many councils were held in Constantinople, sometimes against heresies, sometimes in favor of them. Chief among these councils are: the ecumenical councils of 381, 553, 681, 692, 712, 869 and 878.
So many rich churches and monasteries, imperial or private palaces, not to speak of the luxury of the court and the great imperial dignitaries, naturally excited the covetousness of barbarian peoples, Constantinople had, therefore, to sustain numberless sieges until it finally fell to the Turks in 1453. Today there are more than 2000 mosques, many Turkish hospitals, several of which are in charge of Catholic Sisters of Charity, and a variety of religions and nationalities inhabiting the city.
The Acts of the council have almost entirely disappeared, and its proceedings are known chiefly through the accounts of the ecclesiastical historians Socrates, Sozomen, and Theodoret. There is good reason to believe that it drew up a formal treatise (tomos) on the Catholic doctrine of the Trinity, also against Apollinarianism. “Apollinarianism is a Christological theory, according to which Christ had a human body and a human sensitive soul, but no human rational mind, the Divine Logos taking the place of this last.” ~ Catholic Encyclopedia
Council of Ephesus (431 A.D.)
The idea of this great council seems to have been due to Nestorius, the Bishop of Constantinople. St. Cyril, Patriarch of Alexandria, had accused him to Pope St. Celestine of heresy, and the pope had replied on 11 August, 430, by charging St. Cyril to assume his authority and give notice in his name to Nestorius that, unless he recanted within ten days of receiving this ultimatum, he was to consider himself excommunicated and deposed. No canon was passed, only the dispose of Nestorius.
Council of Chalcedon (451 A.D.)
The Fourth Ecumenical Council, held in 451, from 8 October until 1 November inclusive, at Chalcedon, a city of Bithynia in Asia Minor. Its principal purpose was to assert the orthodox Catholic doctrine against the heresy of Eutyches and the Monophysites, although ecclesiastical discipline and jurisdiction also occupied the council’s attention.
Canons produced at this council included:
- The ecclesiastics should conduct their lawsuits only before the bishop, the synod of the province, the exarch, or the Bishop of Constantinople.
- severe penalties against those who conferred ecclesiastical orders or positions for money, or received such orders or positions for money, and acted as intermediaries in such transactions.
- forbade the erection of a monastery or an oratory without the permission of the proper bishop; recommended to the monks a life of retirement, mortification, and prayer;
- forbade the reception of a slave in a monastery without the permission of his master.
- forbade minor clerics to marry heretical women, or to give their children in marriage to heretics.
- no deaconess should be ordained below the age of forty; and no person once ordained a deaconess was allowed to leave that state and marry.
- forbade secret organizations in the Church, chiefly among clerics and monks.
We can see today that this last one on the list is one that is no longer in effect or is ignored as the last 300 years of papal authority was involved in Freemasonry.
In total there have been 21 councils to determine hierarchy, religious as well as civil laws to govern the hierarchy, and an inexhaustible number of rules for the person desiring the practice of the Catholic faith. Language such as Canon 15.2 “Ignorance or error about a law, a penalty, a fact concerning oneself, or a notorious fact concerning another is not presumed; it is presumed about a fact concerning another which is not notorious until the contrary is proven.” Has to leave the vast majority scratching their heads.
Under the current Catholic doctrine as prescribed by the most recent council, The Second Vatican Council, 1962, people prescribing to the Catholic Church must: “With great diligence they are to fulfill the duties which they owe to the universal Church and the particular church to which they belong according to the prescripts of the law.” Canon 209.2 www.vatican.va