Romanism is the theology adhered to by the Roman Catholic Church. Webster defines Romanism as the beliefs and practices of the Catholic Church based in Rome to state it as clearly as possible what the term means and even lists Roman Catholicism as a synonym. It should come as no surprise that this would be a topic of discussion when considering the views of the Bible in the world today as the RCC (Roman Catholic Church) is no stranger to criticism concerning practices of Christianity, not only within Protestant denominations, but also by more secular groups as well.
The primary focus of this study is to address the different views of the scriptures and not pick apart each theological issue or religious practice of another group. So, while we may touch on various topics within Romanism, the focus should remain on how Romanism views and handles the word of God. Within that focus, the primary issue to be addressed with the view of Romanism is the belief that the Church is supreme. We will see this view in different ways and address its issues briefly as I remind you again that this study is more of an overview than a thorough study of each individual issue with the different views.
What is meant by this phrase: The Church is Supreme? Does it mean that the Church is supreme over something? Over everything? While some may argue that the second is indeed the case, in this study, we are focusing on theological issues and, primarily, the word of God. So, in this case, the phrase is addressing the view that the Church is supreme in determining not only what makes up the Scriptures (the Canon of Scripture), but also determining the meaning of those writings determined to be canonical. In addition to these points, we will also look at the ideas of the incompleteness of scripture and apostolic tradition – not to be confused with apostolic succession.
As with many other views of the Bible, we will find that there is an element of truth within the claims held by Romanism and that there is a type and application of this theology that is true and relevant to our understanding of Christian living and understanding of scripture. We will also explore this and discuss proper application to our lives.
- What ways are you familiar with the RCC and its beliefs specifically relating to the Scriptures?
- Do you have family or friends who belong to the RCC and have you had discussions with them concerning their view of the word of God?