When discussing theology, I've come to realize that not only is personal study of doctrine a necessary component to faith, but it is something that shouldn't be kept to oneself. I want to share my journey, both past and ongoing, into the realm of theology. Through this, I hope that you will gain insight into the Christian faith as a whole. Before reading anything else, I suggest you read the introduction and definitions (found in the pages tabs above) so you may better understand where I am coming from in everything I write. Because many of my posts are on heresies, there is also a page above with a family tree of heresies and links to all the posts I have so far on the topic.

Defining Terms

The debater in me feels I need to make sure we all understand each other, as far as the terms I often use on here.  I'll update this as I find more terms I use frequently that need defining--comment below if there is a term I seem to use often that I haven't yet defined.

  • Catholic: Big "C" Catholic refers to the Roman Catholic church.
  • catholic: Little "c" catholic refers to the church universal: all Christians who believe in faith alone through grace alone as given to us in the Word alone are in the proper sense catholic--universally Christian (even if we disagree on other things).
  • Evangelical: Another word for Lutheran.  This is what the Lutherans first called themselves, Evangelical Catholics (or "Gospel Catholics").  Other church bodies have co-opted our term, but when I use "Evangelical", it is synonymous with "Lutheran".  I'll try to use "Evangelical Catholics" just for clarity.
  • protestant: The word for all non-Lutheran, non-Roman Catholic denominations (save the Orthodox, Anglican and Episcopalian, who are quasi-Catholic, at least in my book).  Traditionally, Lutherans are included in this category, but I think that's as much a misnomer as calling a Lutheran "Lutheran" (something done by the Roman Catholic detractors of the day to vilify Evangelical Catholics)--Luther was not protesting the church, but rather, looking to reform it, whereas Arminius, Calvin, Zwingli and the Radical Reformed were looking to break away from Roman Catholicism from the very beginning.  That's what I consider to be the big difference between Lutherans and "other" protestants.

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