Born Fundamentalists, Born again Catholics.. please answer me this!


#1

When I decided to make the jump from my Fundamentalist background to the Catholic Church I knew I would be “adding” things to my faith… like Mary, the Saints, the Real Presence etc. but I mistakenly assumed that I would be able to take all I knew about the Bible WITH ME! I mistakenly believed that Catholics believed the Bible to be true. I was wrong. Over & over again I’m told that various parts of the Bible AREN’T historical - didn’t happen, just made up “stories.” First Genesis, and now the Gospels. I’m asking all of you former Bible believing Protestants… how were you able to disregard the truth of the Bible? How are you able to say that many parts of it didn’t happen actually happen - that it’s mostly a collection of literary forms? I’m not able to do that.

I have been praying for discernment. Please Lord… don’t let me be led astray. I’m begining to feel like the frog in the pot. (You know… if it’s throw into the boiling water it was jump out but if it’s placed in the water & the temp. is slowly turned up it doesn’t jump out but it dies nonetheless.) Little red flags have been thrown up all along and I’ve pushed them aside. I think God is using this as my giant wake up call. I just can’t accept that the Bible isn’t true… that it’s a collection of prevaling myths and literary forms. How could all of you?


#2

[quote=carol marie]When I decided to make the jump from my Fundamentalist background to the Catholic Church I knew I would be “adding” things to my faith… like Mary, the Saints, the Real Presence etc. but I mistakenly assumed that I would be able to take all I knew about the Bible WITH ME! I mistakenly believed that Catholics believed the Bible to be true. I was wrong. Over & over again I’m told that various parts of the Bible AREN’T historical - didn’t happen, just made up “stories.” First Genesis, and now the Gospels. I’m asking all of you former Bible believing Protestants… how were you able to disregard the truth of the Bible? How are you able to say that many parts of it didn’t happen actually happen - that it’s mostly a collection of literary forms? I’m not able to do that.

I have been praying for discernment. Please Lord… don’t let me be led astray. I’m begining to feel like the frog in the pot. (You know… if it’s throw into the boiling water it was jump out but if it’s placed in the water & the temp. is slowly turned up it doesn’t jump out but it dies nonetheless.) Little red flags have been thrown up all along and I’ve pushed them aside. I think God is using this as my giant wake up call. I just can’t accept that the Bible isn’t true… that it’s a collection of prevaling myths and literary forms. How could all of you?
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I am a convert Catholic. Be rested and assured that it is all true


#3

John,
That is the problem, I do believe it to be true. I’m finding that the Church doesn’t though… (go to the Nativity thread and you’ll see official Church documents that state that the gospels aren’t literal) :frowning:


#4

[quote=carol marie]When I decided to make the jump from my Fundamentalist background to the Catholic Church I knew I would be “adding” things to my faith… like Mary, the Saints, the Real Presence etc. but I mistakenly assumed that I would be able to take all I knew about the Bible WITH ME! I mistakenly believed that Catholics believed the Bible to be true. I was wrong. Over & over again I’m told that various parts of the Bible AREN’T historical - didn’t happen, just made up “stories.” First Genesis, and now the Gospels. I’m asking all of you former Bible believing Protestants… how were you able to disregard the truth of the Bible? How are you able to say that many parts of it didn’t happen actually happen - that it’s mostly a collection of literary forms? I’m not able to do that.

I have been praying for discernment. Please Lord… don’t let me be led astray. I’m begining to feel like the frog in the pot. (You know… if it’s throw into the boiling water it was jump out but if it’s placed in the water & the temp. is slowly turned up it doesn’t jump out but it dies nonetheless.) Little red flags have been thrown up all along and I’ve pushed them aside. I think God is using this as my giant wake up call. I just can’t accept that the Bible isn’t true… that it’s a collection of prevaling myths and literary forms. How could all of you?
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i’m sure it hasn’t taken you long to see that not all catholic’s are as infallible as they pretend to be… just keep reading these forums, and i include myself in their number… take your concerns to your priest, and listen little to the “holier than you wantabees”,.

Peace :thumbsup:


#5

carol,

I am a convert from being Baptist. I attended a Baptist university and seminary. You may not know this but there are those in every denomination that have take much of the Bible as myth and allegory. When I was in school, this was a big controversy because of the effect such theology would have on who controlled the University system of the SBC.

When I joined the Catholic Church, I found many of the same issues. There are theologians in the Church who are very conservative and solid in their approach to the Bible. If the Bible says, “I, Paul” then it was Paul, not some anonymous writer a century later. There are also those who have been poisoned by modernism.

It seems to me that this modernist way of looking at the Bible only through the lens of myth and literary genre is on the decline. If not, at least it will be ended when Christ returns.


#6

Carol Marie:

Where does the theology of Scriptural inerrancy come from? The Catholic Church. Scripture is extremely complex because of the long period of history and multiplicity of authors who wrote it. Of course, the Bible is “true.” But it is true in the context which produced it and has the responsibility of guarding and interpreting it: the context of Catholic Christianity. You are temporarily lapsing into a mindset of absolute and superficial literalism, which is quite a different thing from “truth.”

Scripture contains many modes, forms, and senses: poetic, historical, allegorical. Read paragraphs 109-119 of the Catechism. scborromeo.org/ccc.htm


#7

I am sure there were different preachers and authors and seminary professors in your former denomination who taught things about the bible that you did not agree with, or that differed from the way you were taught. not everybody who writes or teaches (or runs for political office) using the “Catholic” label represents or adheres to Catholic Church teaching. The encyclicals and documents *Dei Verbum *and Divno afflante Spiritu, as well as those published tby the Pontifical biblical commission, such as “the Historicity of the Gospels” for example do represent Church teaching. All papal encyclicals, Vatican II documents and other official church documents are translated into English and published by Pauline books and media, the publishing house of the Daughters of St. Paul, www.pauline.org

for a quick look and good read at the Catholic sense of scripture, read Mark Shea’s Making Sense out of Scripure: Reading the bible as the early Christians Did. best short explanation of the 4 senses of Scripture, and the case against private interpretation. available right here on CA, I believe


#8

Mercygate’s right, truth isn’'t necessarily reduced to literalism. Even Fundamentalists do that: how do they interpret “This is my body”?

What must be done is to identify the literal sense, which is what the author intended in the way he intended it.

If I say, "you are the apple of my eye,I don’t mean that you’re “the firm, edible, usually rounded fruit” of “a deciduous Eurasian tree (Malus pumila) having alternate simple leaves and white or pink flowers” belonging to my “organ of vision.”


#9

The Bible is the “truth” but it depends on what you mean by truth when you are looking at it.

Genises says that the Earth was created in 6 days and on the 7th God rested. Does that mean that the Earth was created literally in 7 days? Maybe, maybe not. Elsewhere in the Bible God says that time is meaningless to him. So a day to God can be 24 hours or it can be a 1000 years, 2000 years, any number of years. A Catholic is allowed to believe that God literally created the Earth in 7 days or he can believe it took a lot longer.

There are several examples of things like that in the Bible. We use the Holy Spirit in conjunction with an informed conscience that was instructed by an infallible church to guides us in interpretting scripture.


#10

Can you give some specific instances (stories) or parts of the bible that you feel the Cathloic Church has deemed allegory that you always believed was literally true?

I have often had the experience that alot of non-Catholics seem to take all of the bible literally only they don’t take the parts that should be taken literally. Those parts they seem to think are symbolic.

I don’t think every denomination takes all of the bible literally. There are parts that are clearly allegory and those that are not. That’s why I want you to give something specific. Thanks.


#11

I think it is important to remember that the Bible is a collection of writings, some of which were never intended to be historical. An obvious example is the parables of Jesus and the book of Tobit. The gospels, on the other hand, must be taken historically.

The Church has only spoken as a matter of faith on a handful of Scripture. One such case is Adam and Eve, who must be taken a literaly man and woman and the progenitors of mankind.


#12

I’m a recent convert.

I’m not sure what parts of the Gospels people are saying are just made up, but I’ve not heard any such thing.

As for the OT works, I’ve never met or heard anyone who took everything in the bible with a wooden literalism. For instance, in Job 38:5-8, have you ever heard it seriously taught that God used a measuring tape when He made the universe, that the stars actually sprouted mouths and sang songs, or that the sea was fashioned in a womb? I doubt it.

We all realize, methinks, that understanding scriture demands that we recognize the literary forms used. I think that what you’re dealing with is the fact that you’ve always been taught that more of the bible is to be taken with wooden literalism than the Church would teach. It’s all true - allegory, simile, poetic images and history - but neither you nor I are qualified to determine what the boundaries are. That’s the job of the Magesterium…

Whenever my understanding conflicts with what the Church teaches, I go with the Church - because Jesus said that the Church, by his grace, would always get it right. And as the Church is the mystical body of Christ, how could it possibly be otherwise?

“And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20


#13

[quote=carol marie]When I decided to make the jump from my Fundamentalist background to the Catholic Church I knew I would be “adding” things to my faith… like Mary, the Saints, the Real Presence etc. but I mistakenly assumed that I would be able to take all I knew about the Bible WITH ME! I mistakenly believed that Catholics believed the Bible to be true. I was wrong. Over & over again I’m told that various parts of the Bible AREN’T historical - didn’t happen, just made up “stories.” First Genesis, and now the Gospels. I’m asking all of you former Bible believing Protestants… how were you able to disregard the truth of the Bible? How are you able to say that many parts of it didn’t happen actually happen - that it’s mostly a collection of literary forms? I’m not able to do that.

I have been praying for discernment. Please Lord… don’t let me be led astray. I’m begining to feel like the frog in the pot. (You know… if it’s throw into the boiling water it was jump out but if it’s placed in the water & the temp. is slowly turned up it doesn’t jump out but it dies nonetheless.) Little red flags have been thrown up all along and I’ve pushed them aside. I think God is using this as my giant wake up call. I just can’t accept that the Bible isn’t true… that it’s a collection of prevaling myths and literary forms. How could all of you?
[/quote]

Carol Marie,

You are encountering a problem with Catholic theologians, not Catholic theology (the actual teaching of the Church). I suggest you read Dei Verbum from Vatican II and you will see that the Church teaches, just as she always has, that the Bible is completely without error - that everything it intends to teach is absolutely, 100% true because it is the inspired Word of God. Now, that said, the Bible is not 100% literal. It often uses poetic and figurative expressions to present what it teaches BUT WHAT IT TEACHES IS 100% TRUE. The use of this poetic and figurative language can cause some confustion for us in terms of our own understanding, but that is a defect in us, not a defect in the Bible. That is the Catholic teaching. Anything you hear to the contrary - no matter what the source - is simply not Catholic teaching.

The problem that we “sophisticated” people of the 20th and 21st centuries have is that we think that something has to be literal in order to be true. That is a view that we have imposed on ourselves but was not the case in previous times. Truth can be expressed in many ways - but it still remains the truth. I will look for the Nativity thread but, just in case, could someone post a link?


#14

[quote=theMutant]Carol Marie,

You are encountering a problem with Catholic theologians, not Catholic theology (the actual teaching of the Church). I suggest you read Dei Verbum from Vatican II and you will see that the Church teaches, just as she always has, that the Bible is completely without error - that everything it intends to teach is absolutely, 100% true because it is the inspired Word of God. Now, that said, the Bible is not 100% literal. It often uses poetic and figurative expressions to present what it teaches BUT WHAT IT TEACHES IS 100% TRUE. The use of this poetic and figurative language can cause some confustion for us in terms of our own understanding, but that is a defect in us, not a defect in the Bible. That is the Catholic teaching. Anything you hear to the contrary - no matter what the source - is simply not Catholic teaching.

The problem that we “sophisticated” people of the 20th and 21st centuries have is that we think that something has to be literal in order to be true. That is a view that we have imposed on ourselves but was not the case in previous times. Truth can be expressed in many ways - but it still remains the truth. I will look for the Nativity thread but, just in case, could someone post a link?
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forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=20781


#15

I have posted my response in that thread. I hope that it helps.


#16

[quote=carol marie]When I decided to make the jump from my Fundamentalist background to the Catholic Church I knew I would be “adding” things to my faith…
like Mary, the Saints, the Real Presence etc.
but I mistakenly assumed that I would be able to take all I knew about the Bible WITH ME!

Philthy

You mean like the symbolic presence of Christ in the Eucharist? How do so many alledged “bible believing” Christians decide to interpret the words “This IS my body” to mean anything other than "This is my body’?

I mistakenly believed that Catholics believed the Bible to be true. I was wrong.

No you’re not. But it sounds like you are falling into the trap of listening to “Catholics” rather than the Catholic Church. Get yourself a copy of the Catechism and read the sections on the Word of God. Dei Verbum is an outstanding suggesting by Mr Cooney.

Over & over again I’m told that various parts of the Bible AREN’T historical - didn’t happen, just made up “stories.” First Genesis, and now the Gospels.

We really need a few specifics here on exactly what you’re talking about. Genesis seems to have some play, but Im not aware of too much in the Gospels. One thing I know, the geneology of Christ from the Gospel of Matthew is incomplete when compare it to the entire OT. It is believed he did this to emphasize various things to a Jewish audience. Is that the kind of stuff you mean?

Genesis is different entirely. You need to understand a few things. When you say that you understand Genesis in the literal sense what does this mean? For example, in Genesis1 God creates the heavens and the earth on the first “day”. But the sun and the planets aren’t created until “days” later. Our concept of a “day” is the amount of time that it takes the earth to rotate once in its axis around the sun(24 hours). If God hasn’t created the sun yet, what does it mean that he created the earth and the heavens on day 1? Exactly how long was that first “day”? 24 hours? You really don’t know - it could have been a 24 hour day or it could have been totally different. That doesn’t change the essential truth of Genesis, however. God created everything, but only we were created in His image, male and female.

Next post…
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#17

Don’t miss the forest for the trees.

I’m asking all of you former Bible believing Protestants… how were you able to disregard the truth of the Bible?

You do, of course, realize how many variations of “the truth” developed from Protestantism which continues to change with time, unlike Catholic teaching. Look at contraception - go see what Luther, Wesley and Calvin had to say about it. They were violently against it as a most hideous sin. Then somehow, following the Lambeth Conference in the 1930’s, its OK. Where exactly did that “truth” come from? Did the holy Spirit really give them an understanding that the entire collective history of the Church, including the Reformers were not able to access?

How are you able to say that many parts of it didn’t happen actually happen - that it’s mostly a collection of literary forms? I’m not able to do that.

I don’t think you’re being asked to do that - certainly not by the Church. But you must respect how radically different written communication was 2 thousand years ago. To deny this is to deny reality. That’s a key function of the Church: to guard the truth throughout all time. No individual at any point in time is capable of doing that…not you, no single theologian, and not me. And another thing Scott Hahn points out: the Bible is God revealing Salvation history - not natural history in the way we would write history. Keep that in mind…

I have been praying for discernment. Please Lord… don’t let me be led astray.

[font=Arial]Nothing wrong with that. But I think God has already answered this for us from the Bible…
[/font]Here, let me be God and anwser this for you:

I love you: I have died for you, I have risen, and I will come again for you. I will send you the holy Spirit to be with you. I will build you a Church on Peter the Rock which Satan will never triumph over. I will have them "go and make disciples of all nations baptizing and TEACHING all I have commanded. Matt 29:19-20. They will not simply be distributing bibles for you to read. And this Church will be “the pillar and foudation of the truth” 1Tim 3:15. Do you really have a better plan?

I’m begining to feel like the frog in the pot. (You know… if it’s throw into the boiling water it was jump out but if it’s placed in the water & the temp. is slowly turned up it doesn’t jump out but it dies nonetheless.) Little red flags have been thrown up all along and I’ve pushed them aside. I think God is using this as my giant wake up call. I just can’t accept that the Bible isn’t true… that it’s a collection of prevaling myths and literary forms.

Again, I don’t know specifically what you’re talking about, but “myths and literary forms” were used to CONVEY TRUTH especially when that truth existed outside the day to day reality of peoples lives.

How could all of you?

HE is the way, the Truth and the Life. don’t lose your focus. What is it exactly that you need to believe that you feel you’re being asked to give up? Why is this so difficult? Does it in any way diminish God’s attributes or Christ’s sacrifice? If not, why do you feel the need to hold onto it? Think about it and continue to pray. I will pray for you as well.

Phil


#18

**There seems to be a faction in the Catholic Church that have become so wrapped up in their own “intelligence” as to be able to explain away scripture as “literary fables.” Like miracles were not really miracles but just literary prerogatives. **

Heresy plain and simple.


#19

Back in the day there weren’t any lay people per se’ to partake in the Mass and partcipate in Parish business affairs. The biggest mistake IMHO was allowing the liberal element to infiltrate and corrupt the Church. We have lost the discipline and lack the discourse on which the Church was founded. Everybody has the ‘better idea’ and have therefore politicized the Church. Liberals have invaded every facet of the Church from the way communion is administered to music ministry. Too many cooks spoil the soup and lately the soup has acquired an awful nasty taste. It was all done on the premise of change with the argument being made that the teachings of the Church were outdated. The fear was that if we didn’t try to make EVERYONE happy that they’d just go down the street to the next church. We would have faired better had we’d let them go IMHO. I’m sure the Vatican would like to put that genie back in the bottle but it’s obviously too late. Things are out of control as evidenced by the numerous scandels and rogue clergy who continue to defame the Church. I am a devout Catholic in that I believe the Catholic religion is right for me. I do not nor will ever condone the mismangement that has run this ship aground as of late. I also do not think it’s right to bail on the Catholic Faith due to the incompetence of isome of its leadership. All it means is that we Catholics must pick up the slack and restore the Faith to what Jesus had intended it to be. We need to take on the role of St. Peter and become the rock on which the Church is grounded. The Bible will never be outdated and will remain throughout time the Greatest Story Ever Told. Just because you can’t live by the rules doesn’t mean you have to change the rules. That idea may work great for the lyrics of some novelty song but has no place in Church.


#20

The Bible, as the inspired recorded of revelation, contains the word of God; that is, it contains those revealed truths which the Holy Ghost wishes to be transmitted in writing. However, all revealed truths are not contained in the Bible (see TRADITION); neither is every truth in the Bible revealed, if by revelation is meant the manifestation of hidden truths which could not other be known. Much of the Scripture came to its writers through the channels of ordinary knowledge, but its sacred character and Divine authority are not limited to those parts which contain revelation strictly so termed. The Bible not only contains the word of God; it is the word of God. The primary author is the Holy Ghost, or, as it is commonly expressed, the human authors wrote under the influence of Divine inspiration. It was declared by the Vatican Council (Sess. III, c. ii) that the sacred and canonical character of Scripture would not be sufficiently explained by saying that the books were composed by human diligence and then approved by the Church, or that they contained revelation without error. They are sacred and canonical “because, having been written by inspiration of the Holy Ghost, that have God for their author, and as such have been handed down to the Church”. The inerrancy of the Bible follows as a consequence of this Divine authorship. Wherever the sacred writer makes a statement as his own, that statement is the word of God and infallibly true, whatever be the subject-matter of the statement. It will be seen, therefore, that though the inspiration of any writer and the sacred character of his work be antecedent to its recognition by the Church yet we are dependent upon the Church for our knowledge of the existence of this inspiration. She is the appointed witness and guardian of revelation. From her alone we know what books belong to the Bible. At the Council of Trent she enumerated the books which must be considered “as sacred and canonical”. They are the seventy-two books found in Catholic editions, forty-five in the Old Testament and twenty-seven in the New. Protestant copies usually lack the seven books (viz: Tobias, Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, and I, II Machabees) and parts of books (viz: Esther 10:4-16:24, and Daniel 3:24-90; 13:1-14:42) which are not found in the Jewish editions of the Old Testament.


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