Part 2: Defense against Catholic Bashers. Protestants are only Biblical, when it's convenient for them. They pick & choose only parts of the Bible.

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Creation at a distance, far far away.  Wisdom comes when you step back and take a look at your situation.

There's a general rule of historical studies & life itself:  Always look for the motive

Do not be deceived.  At its 16th Century inception, Protestantism was a political power play, in the attempt to grab as many jurisdictions as possible from the jigsaw puzzle known as the Holy Roman Empire.  In defining the political structure of that empire, you can interchangeably call it a "political quilt."  This is because it was a patchwork of duchies, hochstifts (each managed by a bishop), countships, principalities, and imperial free cities.   Note: A hochstift is a bishopric with added acreage.

This Protestant acquisition of the various jurisdictions would translate into the acquisition of Catholic Church real estate and financial assets.  The names on the effected real estate deeds would all be changed, of course.  None the less, Protestantism was originally a north-central European phenomenon, and the Holy Roman Empire became mostly a north-central political confederation, by 1378.  That was 143 years before Martin Luther made his mark.   The Year 1378 is mentioned, because it's recognized as the start of the Great Western Schism, when anti-popes arrayed the European political landscape.

None the less, the late 1300s and early 1400s are regarded as the precursor years of the Protestant take-over of Catholic Church property, particularly in the persons of John Wycliffe and Jan Hus (It's pronounced a lot like "Yawn Hoose").  Concerning these two individuals, propagandists made a sport out of false light presentations of them, to the point of making both individuals martyrs of the evil evil, Bible-hating, Whore of Babylon Church.  Therefore, a brief background is needed:

Before anything else, take note that, within the documents of Vatican II, the travesty known as 16th Century Europe was a time when "both sides were at fault."  This included the Catholics there at the time, too.   Next:

[1a] John Wycliffe was NOT executed.  He suffered his second stroke on December 28, 1384,  during Mass.  Three days later, he died.  This occurred in Lutterworth England.  No one executed him. 

[1b] It suffices to state that, 44 years after 1384, Wyclyffe's bodily remains were exhumed and removed from consecrated land ... tossed out.  His followers were Lollards, (which see.)  His most famous financial supporter was John of Gaunt (Ghent), Duke of Lancaster (which see.) . 

[2] Jan Hus was in the middle of a power-play.  He lived in Bohemia (Czech Republic) during an ongoing tug-of-war between two simultaneous anti-popes, a prior anti-pope, and a papal claimant eventually recognized as the valid pope. However, it looked like Hus was trying to become a type of pope unto himself.

Hus was cited as having taught 30 heretical "propositions."  He obstinately refused to retract any of them.  Those doctrinal assertions were silly, to be honest with you.  Well actually, they were goofy.  For example, Hus claimed that, as soon as a priest commits a mortal sin, he is no longer a priest.  

****** Roman Catholic Doctrine about the priesthood generally goes as follows ******

The truth is that it's only Christ's power that makes a priest a priest.  Not any amount of holiness, on the part of the priest achieves this.  Therefore, even if a priest loses holiness, he doesn't lose his priesthood.  The only way in which a priest can lose his priesthood is if Jesus Christ suddenly stops existing.  Authentic Church Teaching is that a validly ordained priest is a priest forever, even if he goes to Hell.  And yes, priests are NOT immune to Eternal Damnation, simply because they're priests. 


Moreover, Wycliffe's statements were on the side of defamatory.  In addition, there is a huge difference between a translating the Bible into English, and a deliberately mistranslating it  However, it could be assumed that Wycliff was referring to priests of his era, as opposed to the nature of the priesthood, when writing the damning things he wrote.  None the less, Wycliffe died from a stroke, as opposed to dying from rope-induced strangulation or an enthusiastically lit bonfire.   None the less . . . 

. . . at a modern Catholic college, if you make such assertions as did Hus, the honor students will silently roll their eyes and a professor will flunk you, followed by you changing your major to Journalism, Sociology, or Political Science.  No big deal.  Hus, however, was riling up the lesser-educated people with a sky-is-falling hype.  Yes, there was the matter of speaking out against clergy corruption, but a person can't exaggerate.

Furthermore, Hus was an ordained priest (as of 1401) and he did teach at one of the Prague universities.  So, he was seen as a "steward" of Church teaching and even property.  All that he had to do was not be so stubborn over those 30 doctrinal assertions which were contrary to the textbooks he agreed to follow, in order to become a professor.  He was in breech of contract, for starters.  He needed to go out and start his own religion, without using church property, in the process thereof.

Moreover, a Renaissance era priest was not declared a "heretic" unless he refused to be corrected in erroneous doctrinal statements.  Being obstinate, while being in doctrinal error, is Renaissance Era heresy.  Today, you have to go out and start your own religion, with your own congregation, to be declared a heretic or a schismatic.

Well, in the middle of the Council of Constance (Konstanz), in 1415, Hus was declared a heretic.  Okay.  Fine.  He was then handed over to civil authority who ended up executing him in an anarchic fashion.  Yet, they did it in way that enabled Hus to retract his heresies, all the way to the "place of immolation" where they set the hay on fire.   Okay.  NOT fine.  Now, here is the outrage of it all:

Jan Hus's Execution:  The civil authorities went out of bounds.

Show me the name of the civil authority who had jurisdiction over Hus.   Show me that authority's sentencing document.  In fact, where was the trial?  Where was the due process of the law by civil authority?  The church clergy took its time with Hus, and then all of sudden, whoooosh.  It was instant doom, when it came the civil leaders.  That wasn't very civilized of them.  Was it, now?

Plus, a rule needed to observe, in order to keep the peace ... and prevent rioting ... is to NEVER make your enemy look like a martyr.  I mentioned this in my Military Science Reference Guide, concerning the treatment of POW's.  I assume that it can still be found online.  Next:

In fairness to the ruling class at the time, there was a motivation for a speedy execution.  ANS:  The 1414 Oldcastle's Revolt ... in England.  It started with followers of the late John Wycliffe being sent to the Tower of London.  It ended in a battle on Sr. Giles Field.  John Oldcastle fled early in the battle.  In the end, 80 of John Wycliffe's followers (Lollards) were captured.  Seventy-nine of them were put to death ... by burning or hanging.

Shortly after the Hus lynching of 1415 came another lynching in 1431:  that of Joan of Arc, during the Hundred Years War which actually lasted for 116 years.   She was a prisoner of war, and the treatment of her would not have passed the Geneva Convention's code of conduct.

The war was a long one, but her execution was a quick process.  It was a kangaroo court. It was a War Crime, quite frankly.  That lynching occurred outside of the Holy Roman Empire's border, though.  There was a reason for the burning at the stake form of execution, by the way.  I'm not going to get into it right now.  It will require too much print space.

The bottom line is that Hus was executed in the midst of anarchy, toward the end of the Great Western Schism.  He contributed to the anarchy.  Quite frankly, certain individuals were posturing themselves for the next election for the office of Holy Roman Emperor.  So, putting a heretic quickly to death was seen as credit points, in their political campaign. 

The irony is that there was not going be another imperial election for another 23 years ... March of 1438.  It was a matter of all that fanfare for nothing.  For the record, the Holy Roman Emperor was elected by an electoral college, just like the President of the United States. 

Old Testament Executions and 16th Century rationalization for execution

Q:  From where came the 15th, 16th, & 17th Century idea of executing people for false doctrine?  ANS: The Old Testament.  Let's go a step further:

In 11th Century Roman Catholic England ... and Danish Viking England ... William the Conqueror abolished the Death Penalty completely . . . except in times of war.  Henry VIII repealed that law.  As time advanced, England would have the death penalty for 220 crimes, including "keeping the company of gypsies for at least one month."  Under Hammurabi, 25 crimes got the death penalty.  In Dracon's Athens (621 to 594 BC) the death penalty was given out as commonly as modern-day traffic tickets.

There was a time when decimating a tobacco crop in Protestant America (in Colonial America) got the death penalty.  And why?  ANS:  Because tobacco was monetary currency, at one time.  In colonial America, horse-theft got the death penalty, along with numerous other acts.  Then came branding.  If you were convicted of burglary, you would get the letter, B, burned into your right hand ... and into your left hand, for the second offense.  

The death penalty was not isolated to the evil evil Whore of Babylon Catholic Church.  It is a part of the human condition, dating  back to the beginning of civilization, as was war.  And it was very easy for the archeologists to discern the pattern of warfare.  It dealt with the fact that men went to war and women stayed in the villages ... camps ... fortresses.  

A small population of male bodily remains in the archeological sites indicated warfare, and it was found that warfare was as early as civilization.  There was no Utopia in the beginning of civilization.  Actually, the history of human civilization was quite uncivilized.  It definitely enforces a believer's belief in Original Sin, meaning that man is not an evolved monkey.  Man is a fallen angel.  Monkeys can't read Shakespeare.

No one in civil authority decided to exile Hus ... or to send him to counseling.  In fact, the common church practice through the centuries was that of telling the impenitent sinner that he needed to spend his remaining days in a monastery, doing penance ... unless he were far to stubborn to comply in any capacity.

None the less, the execution of Hus resulted in outraged citizens.  This resulted in a fifteen-year long series of wars that didn't even begin until four years after Hus was executed.  And it didn't begin until a handful of Hussites tossed a judge out of a second story window. 

For some reason, tossing people out of a window was a custom in Europe, during the Little Ice Age.  If you wanted to start a war in Europe, you would first throw a guy out of a window.  It's kind of like the glove-slap-in-the-face thing you see in the movies, when one 18th Century guy is challenging another one to a duel.

Here was the fear:  It's simple.  The fear was that Hus would start at least a local revolt and take some Church property with him.  The very thing they tried to prevent ended up happening.  None the less, this "rash misuse" of civil power resulted in a series of ecumenical councils dedicated to cleaning up the clergy, being that the clergy was very negligent in what happened to a priest "handed-over to civil authority."

An institution as large as the Catholic Church will attract power-grabbers and the greedy.  All power-grabbers are power-abusers.  A weeding-out process is needed in large institutions.  These abuses of power throughout history were not the result of the Catholic Church being the evil evil "Whore of Babylon."  They came about because the Catholic Church was so large ... so powerful ... and so rich.  Thieves sneak-up behind the rich ... not the poor.    Thieves break-in to the rich house ... not the poor one.

It is much easier to hide in a large city than in a small village.  It is also easier to sneak around a large church than a small one.  And there is much more to steal from a large city ... a large church ... a large anything.  So, the Catholic Church needs to be on guard for the infiltration of the wolves.   It's that simple.  The Corruption Factor of any institution is equal to its Size.


Part 3 of  7 parts ===>


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You sometimes have to clean a temple of its money-changers.