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Is the Bible self-authenticating?

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On 12/5/2018 at 6:09 PM, cksalmon said:

Does my rambling have a point? Is the Protestant view superior to the Mormon view?

I’m struggling in how to answer this and I think it has to do with the historical nature of the doctrine of Sola Scriptura (if I’m allowed to assume my previous post that is). The doctrines of the Reformation that have come to identify a “protestant” theology from either a “Roman” theology or an “Eastern” theology were crafted during a time Mormonism didn’t exist; so why it isn’t hard to find an application of Sola Scriptura against a modern day Roman Catholic Church because of the historical context, it really becomes a struggle when Protestants want to find an application of Sola Scriptura against a specific Mormon Church like the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. 

Why? The theology of both groups is rather different. Mormon Soteriology has categories from latter day revelation that never really enter the conceptual landscape of most Protestant, Roman, and, Eastern Christians. In practice we are nearly universalists, but with our different degrees of glory and views about the postmortal realm, it can be difficult to make traditional applications. Take for instance a traditional Roman view: “Accepting Jesus Christ as your saviour who atones for your sins is necessary for salvation, but without the sacraments and ministrations of the Roman Church it isn’t sufficient.”

Now a God-fearing, Westminster Confession loving, Presbyterian of proper Scottish stock hears that and they would immediately accuse of the Romanist of having a false gospel, and one reason would be because scripture is the only infallible rule of faith and not the Church and her sacraments and ministrations.

How about a Latter Day Saint? Compared to the Romanist and Presbyterian above, we have a relatively low bar of admission when it comes to being “saved”. To us, both are saved from the Outer Darkness and have a glorious future, but their respective beliefs is limiting their potential for that glorious future because they are missing out on the restored Gospel, modern day Revelation, and the sacred Covenants that is truly our Lord’s marvelous work. The Romanist and Presbyterian usually consider salvation in very strict either/or terms and the focus is on knowing the criteria for being saved by reconciling with our creator; You have it or you don’t. This is almost always missing from LDS concerns because we have a focus on “You got it, but what are you going to do with it?”

Latter Day Saints deal with categories that Protestants simply do not and when it comes to Protestant doctrines, it seems like it takes twice as much work to make it relevant to Latter Day Saints as it otherwise would to a Romanist even though we both reject Sola Scriptura.    

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22 minutes ago, Vance said:

Either or both.  (Of course the "other authority" would have to be recognized by me as an "authority" before I would accept their pronouncements.)

 

I can accept the Greek Septuagint as canon based on either personal testimony or by the pronouncement of or usage by some other authority.  

 

Or are you limiting this discussion to only the New Testament portion of the "canon"?

 

Ok.  So, whether you rely on personal testimony or an authority, how do you test whether your decision objectively aligns with God’s will? 

Edited by Spammer

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12 minutes ago, Spammer said:

My claim is there must be an arbiter whom we reference, if we validly want to remove ‘merely true for me’ from our personal assertions of truth. 

I think that there are some who could logically argue that there is only "merely true for me".    Even if there is an "arbiter" fully authorized by God, the "fact" that I know who this "arbiter" is "merely true for me".    The only way it could be true for more than "merely me" is if I was the arbiter.

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2 minutes ago, Spammer said:

Ok.  So, whether you rely on personal testimony or an authority, how do you test whether your decision objectively aligns with God’s will? 

That is the big question isn't it.  That puts us back to the "merely true for me" thing.

For you, you can only know what is "merely true for you".  For you, (as I understand it) the Pope is the "arbiter", that is the "truth" for you.  You may suggest to me that it should be the "truth" for me as well, but you can't "know" or make it "true" for me.  I would have to come to that "merely true for me" same conclusion for myself.

So, that puts us back to the "merely true for me" thing, whether we like it or not.

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Vance said:

I think that there are some who could logically argue that there is only "merely true for me".    Even if there is an "arbiter" fully authorized by God, the "fact" that I know who this "arbiter" is "merely true for me".    The only way it could be true for more than "merely me" is if I was the arbiter.

Well put. I agree with this. So, if true, what business do any of us have asserting ‘the truth is x,’ without adding ‘true for me only?’ The arbiter is the sole exception.

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On 12/5/2018 at 6:09 PM, cksalmon said:

Is the Protestant view superior to the Mormon view?

After my own rambling posts (contagious maybe?) I think what I’m stuck on is that fact that no matter what the designated authority is either the individual believer or the corporate body of believers is still left with the task of interpreting and understanding that authority. My modern Prophets, Seers, and Revelators do provide insight and guidance, but I’d be posting in bad faith if I acted as if they were authoritatively speaking on all the various controversies within the Latter Day Saint world. I may be getting my marching orders every General Conference, but those orders come with ambiguity, context, and subtext. I still have to work out the applications of what is said to my life.

In the end, how much different is that from my Protestant neighbor who is doing all of the above but with his Scofield Study Bible? The medium is different, sure, but our problems are all hermeneutical in nature.    

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22 hours ago, Spammer said:

Well put. I agree with this. So, if true, what business do any of us have asserting ‘the truth is x,’ without adding ‘true for me only?’ The arbiter is the sole exception.

I agree, but saying  -xyz- is the arbiter of truth is still merely true for me, even if he is God's appointed arbiter. 

If someone else is your "arbiter", to you, he is still "God's arbiter of truth" even though God didn't appoint him. And still it is "merely true for you".

Edited by Vance

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5 minutes ago, Vance said:

That is the big question isn't it.  That puts us back to the "merely true for me" thing.

For you, you can only know what is "merely true for you".  For you, (as I understand it) the Pope is the "arbiter", that is the "truth" for you.  You may suggest to me that it should be the "truth" for me as well, but you can't "know" or make it "true" for me.  I would have to come to that "merely true for me" same conclusion for myself.

So, that puts us back to the "merely true for me" thing, whether we like it or not.

 

 

Yep, that’s how I see it. Coming full circle, it’s true the arbiter I defer to is my arbiter solely based on my own subjective calculation, but at least I can point to an arbiter that I follow. If God appointed an arbiter, and it makes sense to me to conclude that He must have, then whether there is one or isn’t one (the latter meaning we’re stuck with testimony, which isn’t self-authenticating), either way the self-authenticating Bible crowd doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

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2 minutes ago, Spammer said:

Yep, that’s how I see it. Coming full circle, it’s true the arbiter I defer to is my arbiter solely based on my own subjective calculation, but at least I can point to an arbiter that I follow.

Yup!

Quote

If God appointed an arbiter, and it makes sense to me to conclude that He must have, then whether there is one or isn’t one (the latter meaning we’re stuck with testimony, which isn’t self-authenticating), either way the self-authenticating Bible crowd doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

Yup!

I have asked many protestants where they get their authority.  They tell me they get it from the Bible.   Well, I have read the Bible, and have acquired as much authority from the Bible as it is able to confer. So, in that respect we are at an impasse.

They then tell me that they are right because their doctrine comes from the Bible.  I try to explain to them, that their doctrine comes from THEIR interpretation of the Bible.  But THEIR interpretation is not the only legitimate or reasonable one.  I find that the Bible (or rather my understanding of it) agrees far more with my beliefs that it does with theirs.  That is my truth and I am sticking to it.

The Bible can NOT be the final authority of what is true.  There are just too many reasonable interpretations of it that contradict each other.

 

Edited by Vance

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2 hours ago, Spammer said:

Yep, that’s it.

So, again, not to be pedantic, you're inferring that the John 6 passage has been infallibly interpreted rather than having been told such explicitly by the Magisterium? 

 

2 hours ago, Spammer said:

My claim is there must be an arbiter whom we reference, if we validly want to remove ‘merely true for me’ from our personal assertions of truth.

Spammer, some things you've written seem to strongly suggest that the Magisterium confers the property of X's being objectively true (whatever that is) by fiat. 

 

Consider the following:

(1) At time t, RCC declares that X is true for everyone, everywhere, at all times

Prior to time t, is X objectively true?

 

Or, consider this:

(2) At time t1, cksalmon asserts that Y is objectively true

(3) At time t2, RCC asserts that Y is objectively true

Is cksalmon's assertion at t1 correct?

 

Or, what about this?

(4) cksalmon rejects the authority of the Roman Catholic Magisterium

(5) cksalmon believes and claims to know that 

(6) Spammer defers to RCC's assertion that Z and only consequently believes and claims to know that Z

In what respect does the belief that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer? 

In what respect does the claim to know that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer?

Edited by cksalmon

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4 hours ago, Spammer said:

No, I acknowledged the subjectivity of choosing the arbiter. What I’d really like to know is whether spiritual experiences are somehow not subject to the deflationary theory of knowledge. If not, spiritual truth claims not qualified by ‘merely true for me’ are massively problematic. 

The whole point of this is that the fact that they of course are also included in the deflationary theory automatically makes them both "true" in their context and community but not for other communities.

Therefore Catholicism can be "true" for Catholics and Buddhism can be "true" for Buddhists.

The key is the pretty much indisputable fact that truth is undefinable.  As Rorty says, we know how to use the term in the simple ways we use it- in a court for example- where the community is the jury who becomes the artiber of what is true or false.

And that is just.  We send people to the electric chair for the principle that truth is in the eye of one's "peers" as in a "jury of their peers"

We judge all scholarly "truth" by "peer reviewed articles" in which Geologists are judged by Geologists, and Catholic theologians judge Catholic theologians, psychologists in a sub-area of specialization judge their "peers" as well.

But look at the good side of this- in a science context transubstantiation is not even worthy of consideration as being "true" but in a Catholic community it is an absolute "truth".   It is one of the prime doctrinal points of Catholicism as well as all "substance theology" including the Trinity etc.

The entire spiritual power of the church depends on these philosophies of substance being "true" within a context.

And that is fine with me.  They ARE true for Catholics just as Mormonism is for Mormons and some theory in geology is true for geologists.  

And some day Catholicism will change a doctrine or practice - it has happened before- and it still will be true because the community affirms it. 

Same with Mormonism, same with geology.  New paradigms evolve and truth itself changes.  A few years ago everyone was certain that Pluto was a "planet" and then they changed the criteria for defining planets and suddenly Pluto was no longer a planet.

Was it "really" no longer a planet?   Yep!

Before they changed it was it "really" a planet?  Yep!

Before there was a concept and word for "Earth" and a concept and word for "round" was the earth round?

Literally "unheard of"!    We lived at the center of the universe- and that was a perfectly empirical observation everyone could make

Did the "truth" change?  Yep!- on the deflationary theory.  And no other theory of truth works for all circumstances.  For 2000 years philosophers have tried every possibility and this is the best- and yes- I will say "so far" because to deny that truth changes violates the principle itself that....  wait for it...   truth changes!

Honestly philosophers are not dumb enough  to make that mistake!!  ;)

So religious people do not understand the value of putting religion on the same "truth criteria" as is science but it is!  Within its context, and purposes (giving one purpose in life and understanding of where they came from, how to live and where they are going) religion is as true as science in its purpose- empirical and objective observations of the world.

As Galileo said, 

Image result for how to get to heaven not how the heavens go

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5 hours ago, Spammer said:

Sorry I missed this. Who’s to say Jim Jones’s followers didn’t have a testimony and that the paradigm they picked didn’t work best for them - even up to the point when they drank the kool aid?  

Could be- I am not sure what your point is.

Obviously they had no criteria for determining what was a "good" paradigm which just reinforces my point as far as I can see that YOU should decide your own paradigm and not listen to others.

For me the prime directive is to follow what is "good" by your own standards and stick to your own principles.  You are the one who wants you to pick an external source to judge which paradigm is best.  I pick my own and suicide is not an option nor does it describe my idea of a "good religion" ;)

If president Nelson came to my house and told me to commit suicide I would throw him out and create my own church.  ;)

 

 

Edited by mfbukowski

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4 hours ago, cksalmon said:

So, again, not to be pedantic, you're inferring that the John 6 passage has been infallibly interpreted rather than having been told such explicitly by the Magisterium? 

 

Spammer, some things you've written seem to strongly suggest that the Magisterium confers the property of X's being objectively true (whatever that is) by fiat. 

 

Consider the following:

(1) At time t, RCC declares that X is true for everyone, everywhere, at all times

Prior to time t, is X objectively true?

 

Or, consider this:

(2) At time t1, cksalmon asserts that Y is objectively true

(3) At time t2, RCC asserts that Y is objectively true

Is cksalmon's assertion at t1 correct?

 

Or, what about this?

(4) cksalmon rejects the authority of the Roman Catholic Magisterium

(5) cksalmon believes and claims to know that 

(6) Spammer defers to RCC's assertion that Z and only consequently believes and claims to know that Z

In what respect does the belief that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer? 

In what respect does the claim to know that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer?

(He's Orthodox not RC....)

 

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20 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

(He's Orthodox not RC....)

 

On 12/6/2018 at 7:49 PM, Spammer said:

I’m an orthodox, Catholic Christian

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6 minutes ago, cksalmon said:

 

missed it, just trying to help

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Quote

He's Orthodox not RC

Did believing it make it true for you, M?

😎🚬

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On 12/5/2018 at 11:36 PM, Maidservant said:

Would you say that this was done "once" (or?) within historical time, and doesn't have to be "redone" for each individual person?  I actually love what you've described here and I can see it (although my own view of the Bible probably wouldn't match anyone's here of any flavor).

Because there is this sense of EACH person finding out for himself (in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), in the course of their own life.

Great question. Hmm. 

Let me think about that. 

 

 

Edited by cksalmon
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12 hours ago, cksalmon said:

So, again, not to be pedantic, you're inferring that the John 6 passage has been infallibly interpreted rather than having been told such explicitly by the Magisterium? 

 

Spammer, some things you've written seem to strongly suggest that the Magisterium confers the property of X's being objectively true (whatever that is) by fiat. 

 

Consider the following:

(1) At time t, RCC declares that X is true for everyone, everywhere, at all times

Prior to time t, is X objectively true?

 

Or, consider this:

(2) At time t1, cksalmon asserts that Y is objectively true

(3) At time t2, RCC asserts that Y is objectively true

Is cksalmon's assertion at t1 correct?

 

Or, what about this?

(4) cksalmon rejects the authority of the Roman Catholic Magisterium

(5) cksalmon believes and claims to know that 

(6) Spammer defers to RCC's assertion that Z and only consequently believes and claims to know that Z

In what respect does the belief that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer? 

In what respect does the claim to know that Z differ between cksalmon and Spammer?

I don't speak for the RCC.  I'm only explaining my understanding of what the Church teaches. Fundamental to that is my belief that objectively true truth is objectively true, even if there isn't a human mind to perceive it.  God is the objectively true truth.  Whether you, me or the RCC asserts that Y is objectively true, or 'that Z', is irrelevant to whether Y or Z are objectively true. 

If the RCC is God's appointed arbiter, then the Church has a special role in perceiving and defining what is objectively true for human minds using language.  Whether the RCC infallibly defines a truth, or whether you or I agree with what the RCC declares to be objectively true, is irrelevant.  If Y or Z are true, then they're true.  If the RCC is  God's appointed arbiter and the RCC were to disappear, Y or Z would still be objectively true.

Whether there are human beings to perceive the objective truth and whether God selects some of those humans to be His designated declarers of His truth has no bearing on whether that truth exists.  It does - it exists in God eternally. The issue at hand is how do human minds get at objective truth, since we're interact with things outside of ourselves solely through our perceptions.  Objective truth is objectively true, even if no human mind perceives it.  God Is. 

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8 hours ago, cksalmon said:

 

I was RC first, then Orthodox.  I consider both to be part of the one, Catholic and apostolic church, the same church, with some of the parts sadly not currently in communion with each other.  Together, they comprise the ancient, Universal (Catholic) church. 

I sympathize with the views of Vladimir Soloviev, who perceived a need for the pope.  His book 'Russia and the Universal Church' got him into a lot of trouble with the Russian church.  It's an excellent analysis of the situation and a plea for unity between the Latin, Russian and Greek churches.  A joke among the Orthodox says that the Orthodox churches couldn't organize a picnic.  I think that's true.  Recent events (Russia breaking communion with the Ecumenical Patriarch in Constantinople/Istanbul; recent failed efforts to establish the first ecumenical council in centuries) bear that out.  I consider both the RCC and the Orthodox to be orthodox, hence my preferred use of 'orthodox, Catholic Christian' to describe myself.

Edited by Spammer

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10 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

The whole point of this is that the fact that they of course are also included in the deflationary theory automatically makes them both "true" in their context and community but not for other communities.

Therefore Catholicism can be "true" for Catholics and Buddhism can be "true" for Buddhists.

The key is the pretty much indisputable fact that truth is undefinable.  As Rorty says, we know how to use the term in the simple ways we use it- in a court for example- where the community is the jury who becomes the artiber of what is true or false.

And that is just.  We send people to the electric chair for the principle that truth is in the eye of one's "peers" as in a "jury of their peers"

We judge all scholarly "truth" by "peer reviewed articles" in which Geologists are judged by Geologists, and Catholic theologians judge Catholic theologians, psychologists in a sub-area of specialization judge their "peers" as well.

But look at the good side of this- in a science context transubstantiation is not even worthy of consideration as being "true" but in a Catholic community it is an absolute "truth".   It is one of the prime doctrinal points of Catholicism as well as all "substance theology" including the Trinity etc.

The entire spiritual power of the church depends on these philosophies of substance being "true" within a context.

And that is fine with me.  They ARE true for Catholics just as Mormonism is for Mormons and some theory in geology is true for geologists.  

And some day Catholicism will change a doctrine or practice - it has happened before- and it still will be true because the community affirms it. 

Same with Mormonism, same with geology.  New paradigms evolve and truth itself changes.  A few years ago everyone was certain that Pluto was a "planet" and then they changed the criteria for defining planets and suddenly Pluto was no longer a planet.

Was it "really" no longer a planet?   Yep!

Before they changed it was it "really" a planet?  Yep!

Before there was a concept and word for "Earth" and a concept and word for "round" was the earth round?

Literally "unheard of"!    We lived at the center of the universe- and that was a perfectly empirical observation everyone could make

Did the "truth" change?  Yep!- on the deflationary theory.  And no other theory of truth works for all circumstances.  For 2000 years philosophers have tried every possibility and this is the best- and yes- I will say "so far" because to deny that truth changes violates the principle itself that....  wait for it...   truth changes!

Honestly philosophers are not dumb enough  to make that mistake!!  ;)

So religious people do not understand the value of putting religion on the same "truth criteria" as is science but it is!  Within its context, and purposes (giving one purpose in life and understanding of where they came from, how to live and where they are going) religion is as true as science in its purpose- empirical and objective observations of the world.

As Galileo said, 

Image result for how to get to heaven not how the heavens go

Good stuff.  I'll see if I can boil all my rambling down to this: if all of our experiences and perceptions are subject to deflationary theory, on what ground can we ever say 'X is true always and everywhere, even if there are no minds to perceive it?'  E.g., the proposition 'God exists'.  I just responded to cksalmon saying that 'objective truth is objectively true, even if there are no human minds.'  If I understand deflationary theory and the Pragmatic philosophy, whether that proposition is true or false, irrespective of context; outside, beyond and independent of all contexts, is in principle unknowable. If that's our situation, then we don't have any ground for asserting anything to be objectively true. 

Now I’ll ramble some more. As I said in an earlier post, so much for testimonies as they currently exist.  E.g.,'I know my church is true'.  Honesty requires appending 'true for me but maybe not for you' at the end, every single time you share it with others.  I'm not speaking only of LDS testimony meetings.  All of this applies to all truth claims everywhere, religious, scientific, whatever. 

That leads me to the big question: would God leave us in that state or would he appoint a human agency to be His representative (arbiter) to point us toward what is objectively true, i.e., truth independent of context?  If yes (and it seems to me the answer is yes, if God is loving), how do we identify that arbiter?  By definition, it would have to be that the arbiter is God-appointed in an objective sense and we would somehow have to perceive that arbiter through a process that transcends the limitations of our perception and contingent, contextual inner experience - the subjective bubble we live within.  Deflationary theory says this is impossible. 

So, even if God did appoint an arbiter, we can never know who/what it is.  We can never get outside our experience to see whether the subjective process we used to identify the arbiter aligns with God’s objective will.  We’re trapped.

 Not even God can break through our subjective prison.  Our contextualized, contingent perceptions of him will always get in the way, even if God were to present Himself to our perception directly, like the Joseph Smith story or Jesus, God incarnate, presenting himself to the apostles. We will still perceive God through contingent, subjective, self-colored glasses and, whatever God is, when He takes on matter so we can perceive Him, whatever He is, whatever He says to describe Himself, it won't be 'all of Him,' the 'objectively true' Him, God as He is in Himself outside and beyond all contexts and contingencies.   

I can't see any way out of this puzzle, if deflationary theory is true.  I suppose that's one thing I appreciate about the ancient Catholic view of things.  God is declared to be incomprehensible. 

From a deflationary standpoint, that's the most honest thing you can say about God. Even if God were to appear to you as a man, what you see is all you get.  Whether God really is what you perceive Him to be, you'll never know. Maybe God is really the Flying Spaghetti Monster, but our brains process the data so He looks like man. Maybe we’re all fsm’s and don’t know it, subject as we are to the limitations of our perceptions. Do you have noodly appendages, Mark?

Edited by Spammer

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11 hours ago, cksalmon said:

Did believing it make it true for you, M?

😎🚬

We know what truth is and how to use the term, we just cannot define it in a way that stands up to criticism, and everyone accepts  :) 

 

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4 hours ago, Spammer said:

I don't speak for the RCC.  I'm only explaining my understanding of what the Church teaches.

Sure. I wouldn't expect anything else. 

Quote

Fundamental to that is my belief that objectively true truth is objectively true, even if there isn't a human mind to perceive it.  God is the objectively true truth.  Whether you, me or the RCC asserts that Y is objectively true, or 'that Z', is irrelevant to whether Y or Z are objectively true. 

I agree. 

It appears that we agree to the following set of statements:

(7) X is true

(8) X is true even if the Magisterium doesn't make an official pronouncement that X is true

(9) In the absence of the Magisterium, X is true 

So, I guess the sticky wicket is our our knowing that X is true. 

Quote

If the RCC is God's appointed arbiter, then the Church has a special role in perceiving and defining what is objectively true for human minds using language.  Whether the RCC infallibly defines a truth, or whether you or I agree with what the RCC declares to be objectively true, is irrelevant.  If Y or Z are true, then they're true.  If the RCC is  God's appointed arbiter and the RCC were to disappear, Y or Z would still be objectively true.

That's a big if, to my Protestant mind. We've already established (to our own satisfaction, at least) that objective truth exists without any necessary reference to the Magisterium. Or, to put it another way, we are able to utter true propositions without reference to the Magisterium. But what assurance do we have that our utterance that X constitutes knowledge that X? Maybe our utterances constitute a true belief, but not a justified true belief. Maybe they're just accidentally true. 

You appear to interpose a very subjective step to justify your knowledge that X. 

On 12/8/2018 at 11:20 AM, Spammer said:

[Choosing an arbiter is] a subjective determination. We can’t escape it. We examine the evidence and decide who is the likely candidate. Then, we submit.

How does your admittedly subjective personal choice to accept, let's say, the Magisterium as your authority regarding X, get you to objective knowledge that X? Or, does it? How does a subjective determination on your part lead to justified true belief that X?

I don't see how your solution provides any surer footing than any other paradigm. It seems as if you're saying (and correct me if I'm wrong), well, at least I can point to something external to myself. But, arguably, I can, too (the Bible). And LDS claim to as well (revelation). 

All the attendant polemics aside, this is a fascinating discussion. Thanks for contributing, Spammer. 

 

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8 hours ago, Spammer said:

That leads me to the big question: would God leave us in that state or would he appoint a human agency to be His representative (arbiter) to point us toward what is objectively true, i.e., truth independent of context?

Good question.  I think that in times of apostasy, it is mankind that leaves God and not the other way around.  I think He is always reaching out to us, inviting us.

8 hours ago, Spammer said:

  If yes (and it seems to me the answer is yes, if God is loving), how do we identify that arbiter? 

I suggest that we look to the pattern He has established. 

Amos 3:7, Jer 26:5, Matt 23:24, Luke 11:49.  Just to point to a few. 

I would also suggest that those that have seen God are more able to describe Him than those who haven't.

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6 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

We know what truth is and how to use the term, we just cannot define it in a way that stands up to criticism, and everyone accepts  :) 

I think there might be a lesson in here somewhere. I quoted Spammer labeling himself "an orthodox, Catholic Christian" as proof that he was, in fact, Roman Catholic. But he intended no such meaning. Authorial intent matters after all. 😄

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2 hours ago, cksalmon said:

I think there might be a lesson in here somewhere. I quoted Spammer labeling himself "an orthodox, Catholic Christian" as proof that he was, in fact, Roman Catholic. But he intended no such meaning. Authorial intent matters after all. 😄

No in fact he is not - he is an Orthodox Christian Catholic who does not accept the Pope and is therefore not a Roman Catholic.  There are different "denominations" (using a protestant term) in Catholicism as in Protestantism.

It is perhaps analogous to the difference between Baptists and Southern Baptists

https://www.newsmax.com/fastfeatures/southern-baptists-american-beliefs-set-apart/2015/05/07/id/643337/

But yes, intent is everything in communication you rascal!

(defining"rascal" as "nice guy")  ;)

 

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