"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Thursday, May 31, 2012


The word Catholic

Why Catholic, where can we find it in the bible? Frequently asked question in every Catholic Apologetic forum and group I have joined.

Before answering this question, although similar in approach and partly tackled, I would like to point out first that this article is not intended to address the issue on whether or not Christ gave an Exclusive Specific Proper Name for his Church. (This is another issue to address with).
The word Catholic
The word Catholic was first coined by Ignatius of Antioch, a direct hearer and disciple of the Apostle John:

Where the bishop appears, there let the people be, just as where Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church. (ekklesia katholicos) [letter to the Smyrneans (35-107 A.D.)]

ekklesia katholicos soon became in many cases a mere appellative or proper name of the true Church founded by Christ.

The word katholicos is a Greek word derive from two words kata-, down, along, according to; + holou (from neuter genitive of holos, whole.) The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright 2009 by Houghton Mifflin Company and the same explanation given by Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001 Douglas Harper

It is worthy to note that the original language of the New Testament books was written in Greek, so by going back to its original language we can find verses that deal to the question on where is that in the bible.

Acts 9:31

μν ον κκλησία καθ’ λης τς ουδαίας κα Γαλιλαίας κα Σαμαρείας εχεν ερήνην οκοδομουμένη κα πορευομένη τ φόβ το κυρίου κα τ παρακλήσει το γίου πνεύματος πληθύνετο.

ē men oun ekklēsia kath olēs tēs ioudaias kai galilaias kai samareias eichen eirēnēn oikodomoumenē kai poreuomenē tō phobō tou kuriou kai tē paraklēsei tou agiou pneumatos eplēthuneto.

Acts 5:11 Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these things

Acts 15:22 Then pleased it the apostles and elders with the whole church to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas namely Judas surnamed Barsabas and Silas chief men among the brethren.

Therefore, ekklesia katholicos which means "Universal Church" can be trace within the core text of the bible: holen ten ekklesian means “The Whole Church” or ekklesia kath holes which simply means “The Church throughout the whole” which were both used by no less than the Apostles themselves.

Matthew 28:19 therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
Mark 16:15 He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.

Because the Church that Christ founded is a Universal Church – a Catholic Church… races from all nations gathered before him.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks bro. for spreading the Good News.

    God bless.


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