Expert Answer Forum

Questions about the faith and scripture? QUESTION from Barbara Martz, OCDS July 17, 2000 Dear John Paul,
Tom Balboa just called me as he so often does. He is a very dear friend of mine. He referred me to you pertaining to some questions that a man in the local hardware store has written out for me. He is a Christian and is studying the Jewish faith. He knows that I am a Roman Catholic and I would like to know if you could help me answer some of the questions he has asked me?
Question: #1.... Is the Catholic denomination and or the Pope the representative of God to the people or is the Catholic denomination and or the Pope the representative of the people to God???
Question: #2.....In the Catholic view.....Are the Jews still God's chosen people?
Question: #3....Explain Gen:15?
Question: #4....Explain Matthew 27:46?
Question: #5....Explain Luke 23:46?
Thank you and May God Bless your Ministry.
Barb Martz, OCDS
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, O.L.S.M. on September 7, 2000 Dear Mrs. Martz:
Yes, Tom is a great guy.
Question 1
First, the Catholic Church is not a denomination. It did not denominate from anything. The Catholic Church is the original Church, the Church that Jesus Himself founded personally.
The Pope is the Prime Minister of the Church and thus speaks for God in this world. To the Prime Minister is given the authority of the keys (Isa 22:22). Thus the Pope has the authority to speak for God in matters of faith and morals in an infallible way.
Priest also represent us before God sacramentally. But the Church also teaches that we are all priests -- what is called the royal priesthood, thus we have direct access to God also.
Question: #2.....In the Catholic view.....Are the Jews still God's chosen people?
Question: #3....Explain Gen:15? This is where God makes his covenant with Abraham. The scene of the potential sacrfice of Abraham's son is a fore-picture of the Father giving his Son to the Cross.
When Abraham shows his faithfulness to God to give up his son, God knows that this man is the man to be the seed of the nation Israel and the line to which His Son, Jesus would come.
I don't know what you are looking for, so I can't answer further.
Question: #4....Explain Matthew 27:46?
This is the when our Lord cried out, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me
Jesus was quotng Psalms 22:2 to show the physical and moral pain he is suffering. It is not a complaint against God's plans. It is an utterance of suffering.
Fray Luis de Leon, in Exposicion del libro de Job remarks about the nature of suffering:
Sufferingn does not consist in not feeling since that is proper to those who have no feelings; not does it lie in not showing that one feels pain: rather, suffering means that in spite of pain one does not set aside the law or obedience to God. For feeling is natural to the flesh, which is not like bronze; and so reason does not remove it, becasue reason gives to everything what its nature damands; and our sensitivity is very soft and tender; when it is wounded it of necessity feels, and when it feels it has to cry out.
Question: #5....Explain Luke 23:46?
Here Jesus commends his spirit to the Father.
According to the Navarre Bible Commentary, At this, the climax of his life on earth, when he is apparently left totally on his own, Christ make an act of supreme confidence, throws himself into his Father;s arms, and freely gives up his life.
This cry of Jesus was a cry of obedience to the Father's Salvation Plan. It was him saying, I give my life volunteerly, not one takes it, but I give it up, FOR YOU.
God Bless.

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