Growth & Develpment in the Catholic Church

Jesus said: John 16:12 RSV "I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.

Ryan Zell

8/24/20234 min read

I was told by an Anti-Catholic blogger:

“The Roman Catholic Church’s teachings have been added over the centuries, which means the scriptures never taught them. If doctrines are added to the church it means the teachings themselves were never there from the beginning.”

Jesus says in John 16:12ff “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. But when He, the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”

According to Theologian, David Anders: When Protestants assert that the Catholic Magisterium has “added” to the scripture or to the Deposit of Faith, each of these assertions requires a defense against the counter suggestion that it is in fact Jesus Himself who has not “added” but rather clarified the depth He promised would be a future development of a presently unavailable theological datum.

Jesus had many things to say but the Apostles couldn’t bear them at that point in time. This demonstrates that the Church’s infallible doctrine devolops over time. All public Revelation was complete with the death of the last Apostle, but the doctrine of God’s Revelation develops as our minds and hearts are able to welcome and understand it. God teaches His children only as much as they can bear, for their own good.

St. Paul also weighs in: Ephesians 4:11-13

11 And his gifts were that some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,

12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,

13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood,I was told by an Anti-Catholic blogger:

St. Paul indicates that attaining to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God to mature manhood is a process. We are to grow up in every way into Christ. Doctrine (which means “teaching”) develops as we understand God’s revelation. The Trinity is an example of this.

In Acts 6:6:
6 These they set before the Apostles, and they prayed and laid their hands upon them.

Here we see the Early Church is developing a hierarchy very early on. The Church is guided by the Holy Spirit to develop this hierarchy.

My Answer to this Blogger:

Your claim: “If doctrines are added to the church it means the teachings themselves were never there from the beginning.”

The Trinity in and of itself proves you are wrong or misled. Good, that makes what I am going to say that much easier to understand. We will use your claim to say that both Sola Fide and Sola Scripture were added later and therefore are not taught from the beginning. So your claim that they were taught in scripture is erroneous and now show me were in scripture it is?

You have a list of what you call false teachings. Yet, I’m sure your denomination has adopted some of what you call “false teachings” from my Church, The Catholic Church: Grace? Trinity? Baptism? Annointing of the Sick, Hypostatic Union?

So make the claim that the RCC thinks it can add teachings to their church as if they are God, fine. The Holy Spirit inspired scripture is the word of God. The word of God contains mysteries in the old Testament that were revealed in the New Testament. Not every thing has been fully revealed and if a mystery is revealed, then it would be investigated and meditated upon, discussed and then it may or may not become dogma or doctrine. What is the sense of revealing a mystery. The Catholic Church doesn’t change. It will add to their deposit of faith as things are revealed. The Church evolves as it is supposed to under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Jesus did say: But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all thr truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.

Throughout Acts and specifically in Acts 14/15/16, we see the hand of the Holy Spirit guiding His Church. Jesus did not give out instructions on what to do with Gentile converts into His Church. What Jesus did do is give the Church an infallible authority to guide His Church and that is the Paraclete.

Jesus, the Apostles and the Early Church Fathers warn us about becoming branches cut off from the tree; or being severed from the Mystical Body of Christ. Numerous examples exist in history of who churches breaking off from the Catholic Church. On example is the Nicolaitans. In Rev 2:2-17, Jesus Christ states that he hates their deeds. Jesus Christ hates heresy.

Acts 15, is the perfect example of how the Holy Spirit guides the Church established on the faith of the Apostles with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone. If you can’t see this in scripture, say hello to the other goats. The Church was never meant to be separated units, except by distance. to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;


Ryan Zell

August 19, 2016