The Weekend Word
“In the light of the meaning of the words truth and wisdom in the New Testament, the nature of the Church’s doctrine and authority becomes plain. These facts emerge inescapably from our biblical study.
(1) The Wisdom of God is working through all created life, and far and wide is the sustainer and the inspirer of the thought and the endeavor of men. The Church will therefore reverence every honest activity of the minds of men; it will perceive that therein the Spirit of God is moving, and it will tremble lest by denying this, in word or in action, it blaspheme the Spirit of God. But Wisdom cannot be thus learned in all its fullness. The mind and the eye of man are distorted by sin and self-worship; and the Wisdom that the Spirit of God unfolds throughout the world can lead to blindness and to deceit unless men face the fact of sin and the need for redemption.
Hence, (2) the Church proclaims the Wisdom of God, set forth in its very essence in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, a Wisdom learned when men are brought to the crisis of repentance and to the resulting knowledge of self and of God. The Wisdom of the Cross seems at first to deny the wisdom of the Spirit of God in the created world; it scandalizes men’s sense of the good and the beautiful. But the Christians, who have first faced the scandal, discover in the Cross a key to the meaning of all creation. The Cross unlocks its secrets and its sorrows, and interprets them in terms of the power of God.
Thus (3), the Wisdom uttered in the Cross has created the Church and is expressed through the Church’s whole life as the Body of Christ crucified and risen. The Church’s work in thinking and interpreting and teaching is inseparable from the Church’s life in Christ. Its authority is Christ Himself, known in the building up of the one Body in Truth and in Love. Hence “orthodoxy” means not only “right opinion,” but also “right worship” or “true glory,” after the biblical meaning of the word doxa; for life and thought and worship are inseparable activities in the Body of Christ. kai etheasametha ten doxan autou. In these three ways the Church will be faithful to the biblical meaning of Truth, by reverencing the works of God everywhere and the Spirit of God manifested in the endeavors of men’s minds; by keeping before itself and before men the scandal of the Cross; and by remembering that orthodoxy means not only correct propositions about God, but the life of the one Body of Christ in the due working of all its members.”
Ramsey, Michael (2010-01-18). The Gospel and the Catholic Church (Kindle Locations 1875-1880). Hendrickson Publishers. Kindle Edition.