Doesn't the Bible interpret itself? SDA question

A member of the Seventh-Day Adventists asked this question on another thread:

“Doesn’t the Bible interpret itself?”

This is a Protestant fallacy. It is a fundamental element of Sola Scriptura.

It doesn’t interpret itself if Scripture is to be believed:

2 Peter 3:15-17 – “There are some things in [Paul’s letters] hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures. You, beloved, knowing this beforehand, beware lest you be carried away with the error of lawless men and lose your own stability.”

If scripture interpreted itself, everyone who reads it would come to the same conclusion about what it means. Instead, we have thousands of answers to the same questions from from thousands of denominations.

JMJ Jay

Amen to that!

[quote=Katholikos]A member of the Seventh-Day Adventists asked this question on another thread:

“Doesn’t the Bible interpret itself?”

This is a Protestant fallacy. It is a fundamental element of Sola Scriptura.

It doesn’t interpret itself if Scripture is to be believed:

2 Peter 3:15-17 – “There are some things in [Paul’s letters] hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures. You, beloved, knowing this beforehand, beware lest you be carried away with the error of lawless men and lose your own stability.”

If scripture interpreted itself, everyone who reads it would come to the same conclusion about what it means. Instead, we have thousands of answers to the same questions from from thousands of denominations.

JMJ Jay
[/quote]

One might answer: "Does the Constitution interpret itself?"
Common (God given…) sense… :rolleyes:

[quote=Katholikos]A member of the Seventh-Day Adventists asked this question on another thread:

“Doesn’t the Bible interpret itself?”

This is a Protestant fallacy. It is a fundamental element of Sola Scriptura.

It doesn’t interpret itself if Scripture is to be believed:

2 Peter 3:15-17 – “There are some things in [Paul’s letters] hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures. You, beloved, knowing this beforehand, beware lest you be carried away with the error of lawless men and lose your own stability.”

If scripture interpreted itself, everyone who reads it would come to the same conclusion about what it means. Instead, we have thousands of answers to the same questions from from thousands of denominations.

JMJ Jay
[/quote]

Thousands of conflicting denominations demonstrate the Bible does not interpret itself.

If the Bible interprets itself, where in the Bible does it say so?

The presence of thousands of competing Protestant denominations clearly refutes this nonsense.

Gerry :slight_smile:

When you find several who think they can interpret the Bible: give each papaer and pencil and a Bible, send them to separate rooms and have them write the interpretation of:
Apocalypse XII:v 1 thru’ 10.

Compare the “interpretations”. Why are they all different?

We seem to have lost the Seventh-Day Adventist who asked this question on another thread and prompted me to open this thread. But he hasn’t been here to defend the proposition that Scripture interprets itself. Nor has any other Protestant defended it, although it’s a sub-set of Sola Scriptura.

??? We must have wowed 'em with our logic.:smiley:

JMJ Jay

[quote=Katholikos]A member of the Seventh-Day Adventists asked this question on another thread:

“Doesn’t the Bible interpret itself?”

This is a Protestant fallacy. It is a fundamental element of Sola Scriptura.

It doesn’t interpret itself if Scripture is to be believed:

2 Peter 3:15-17 – “There are some things in [Paul’s letters] hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures. You, beloved, knowing this beforehand, beware lest you be carried away with the error of lawless men and lose your own stability.”

If scripture interpreted itself, everyone who reads it would come to the same conclusion about what it means. Instead, we have thousands of answers to the same questions from from thousands of denominations. When you make a statement to someone and they ask you what it is you are saying because they do not understand your statement. Would you not in turn respond to that individual to clearafy what you are trying to get that person to understand? Likewise with the men that have written the books in the Bible. They are all trying to pass on the message of Christ in many different words, so the many of eyes that read will understand. Keep in mind that the multitude of people that walk this earth absorb info differently. here is a passage in the Bible that I hope may rest your thoughts-Cor.Chptr 12 verse 4"Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit.and there are varieties of ministries, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of workings, but the same God, who works all things in all." God Bless and Peace to you

JMJ Jay
[/quote]

[quote=Katholikos]We seem to have lost the Seventh-Day Adventist who asked this question on another thread and prompted me to open this thread. But he hasn’t been here to defend the proposition that Scripture interprets itself. Nor has any other Protestant defended it, although it’s a sub-set of Sola Scriptura.

??? We must have wowed 'em with our logic.:smiley:

JMJ Jay
[/quote]

It is indeed a subset of Sola Scriptura, and a vital subset at that.

It is therefore surprising that some people still believe in this mythical “clearness” without taking into account the continuous splintering we see in Protestantism today, which is an irrefutably logical consequence of this thinking.

Gerry :slight_smile:

Katholikos-

While I think you have a wonderful gift and a whole lotta intelligence to make your points…and you DO make them quite well…I have to say this. I’ve read many of your posts. Quite frankly, they offend and tick me off at times…and I too, am a recent convert to the Catholic Faith.
It seems to me that instead of being thankful for the seeds of the Faith that the protestant church provided for you even if it lied dormant during your atheist/agnostic days, DID germinate when you came to the Catholic Faith, you bite the hand that fed you and seem to still swing with great might, the axe toward all protestants, and this really ticks me off! Just because Protestants attack Catholics, does NOT give us the right to denigrate, downplay, nor denigrate their faith. Only a spirit of Truth, prayer, and HUMILITY will help in this case. We can sow the seed, but only the Holy Spirit can bring forth the harvest! I hope you’ll consider this. - Humbly, Mfaustina1

[quote=Mfaustina1]Katholikos-

I’ve read many of your posts. Quite frankly, they offend and tick me off at times…and I too, am a recent convert to the Catholic Faith.
It seems to me that instead of being thankful for the seeds of the Faith that the protestant church provided for you even if it lied dormant during your atheist/agnostic days, DID germinate when you came to the Catholic Faith, you bite the hand that fed you and seem to still swing with great might, the axe toward all protestants, and this really ticks me off!
[/quote]

Mfaustina1,

I have to respectfully disagree. I find Kathlikos’ posts to be the most spot-on of any poster on this board. He never varies from the most basic element in the apologetic argument against Protestants…that is their reliance on scripture-only in their anti-catholic positions (I mean anti-catholic in the cases where their theology opposes Catholic teaching). While the tone of his messages is not necessarily ‘kumbai ya’, he writes clearly and succintly.

Thank you, Kathlikos. I look forward to seeing more of your work on this board.

Joel

[quote=Mfaustina1]Katholikos-

While I think you have a wonderful gift and a whole lotta intelligence to make your points…and you DO make them quite well…I have to say this. I’ve read many of your posts. Quite frankly, they offend and tick me off at times…and I too, am a recent convert to the Catholic Faith.
It seems to me that instead of being thankful for the seeds of the Faith that the protestant church provided for you even if it lied dormant during your atheist/agnostic days, DID germinate when you came to the Catholic Faith, you bite the hand that fed you and seem to still swing with great might, the axe toward all protestants, and this really ticks me off! Just because Protestants attack Catholics, does NOT give us the right to denigrate, downplay, nor denigrate their faith. Only a spirit of Truth, prayer, and HUMILITY will help in this case. We can sow the seed, but only the Holy Spirit can bring forth the harvest! I hope you’ll consider this. - Humbly, Mfaustina1
[/quote]

I’m sorry you find my posts offensive.

If you would like to read about my conversion, it’s at chnetwork.org. At the home page, click on “conversion stories,” then scroll down to my name: Jay Damien Conversion Story.

There are some excellent conversion stories at this site. I especially recommend Father Brian W. Harrison’s Logic and the Foundations of Protestantism, Cindy Beck’s The Visible Church Was There All Along, and Patty Bonds Conversion Story.

Thank you for your opinion.

Jay Damien

[quote=Katholikos]A member of the Seventh-Day Adventists asked this question on another thread:

“Doesn’t the Bible interpret itself?”
[/quote]

== Only up to a point. An English translation, which is what is meant in practice, can give only glimpses of the Biblical environment. It’s like trying to interpret Magna Carta in translation, without any knowledge of the circumstances of King John’s reign that gave rise to it; any picture gained from the text of a translation alone, cannot avoid being incomplete.

So “No; or, only up to a point”. For a proper understanding of Biblical theology, one cannot do without a good knowledge of the languages of the Bible and the thinking reflected in them. Which is not that of 20th-century Europeans or Americans. ==

This is a Protestant fallacy. It is a fundamental element of Sola Scriptura.

It doesn’t interpret itself if Scripture is to be believed:

2 Peter 3:15-17 – “There are some things in [Paul’s letters] hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures. You, beloved, knowing this beforehand, beware lest you be carried away with the error of lawless men and lose your own stability.”

If scripture interpreted itself, everyone who reads it would come to the same conclusion about what it means. Instead, we have thousands of answers to the same questions from from thousands of denominations.

JMJ Jay

[quote=joelmichael]Mfaustina1,

I have to respectfully disagree. I find Kathlikos’ posts to be the most spot-on of any poster on this board. He never varies from the most basic element in the apologetic argument against Protestants…that is their reliance on scripture-only in their anti-catholic positions (I mean anti-catholic in the cases where their theology opposes Catholic teaching). While the tone of his messages is not necessarily ‘kumbai ya’, he writes clearly and succintly.

Thank you, Kathlikos. I look forward to seeing more of your work on this board.

Joel
[/quote]

Joel, I thank you for your kind words. I know that my writing style is very direct – I take the shortest distance between two points. I don’t “denigrate” anyone’s position or intentionally hurt or offend anyone. But the facts are what they are, and I don’t feel obliged to drape them with flowers.

In self-defense, may I say that I’ve assisted in the conversion of a wife, her husband, and her two children in oregon; of a university professor in London; and of a man and his wife in Michigan. I met all of these folks in online discussion groups like this one. I guess my writing style is not a total turnoff for everyone. The first two now teach the Faith in their parishes; the third is now enrolled at Franciscan U in Steubenvile, OH. Participation in these conversions was a great, undeserved gift of the Holy Spirit.

I’m grateful for the reassurance that not everyone finds my posts offensive. Thanks so much for your expression of support.:slight_smile:

Jay Damien

Hello all,

I thought this would be an interesting topic to discuss. I will be right up front and tell you that what I believe you will not agree with. I do not want to be hurtful, but I will tell you the Truth, if I am able. I like topical discussion as I find it challenging, one must dig into the Word of God to find the True answers - which is a good thing.

First I will say that I am not 7th Day Adventist, nor any other protestant denomination, we practice True Apostolic Christianity, as the True Jesus Christ of the Bible, and the first century Church did do as described in the Book of Acts.

I read earlier in this forum that, “all the differant denominations prove that the Bible does not interpret itself”. Jesus Chist said that there would be *many *false teachers at the end of the age, Matthew 24:4-5. The Apostle Paul asked the question, “Is Christ divided?”, 1 Corinthians 1:13, and in other places says that we are to be of the same mind, Romans 12:16; 15:6, 1 Corinthians 1:10, there are many other places as well, if you have just a regular Strongs concordance and look up the word “mind”, you will learn what mind to have, and not to have. I stopped at 1 Corinthians 1:10 for a reason, “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all SPEAK THE SAME THING,. and that there be NO DIVISIONS among you, but that you be PERFECTLY JOINED TOGETHER IN THE SAME MIND and in the SAME JUDGEMENT.” All these differant denominations do not prove that the Bible doesn’t interpret itself, it does prove that they are not any part of Gods True Church though. there is only one right Way, but many wrong ways, all these groups are divided, of differing minds. They constitute a majority of the many false teachers and teachings that Christ warned about in Matthew 24.

Jesus Christ said that we are to live by every Word of God, Matthew 4:4, Luke 4:4! The Word of God says to not lean on our own understanding, but to trust God, Proverbs 3:5. His Word being a lamp unto our feet, Psalm 119:105, Gods Law gives us wisdom and understanding, Psalm 119:97-104. In fact, “The fear of the Eternal is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those that DO His Commandments. His praise endures forever.” Psalm 111:10. There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death, Proverbs 14:12. Jesus Christ was the God of the Old Testament, 1 Corinthians 10:4, He confirmed that in order to understand Gods Word one must obey God, John 7:17; 8:31-32. One can only understand Gods Word through the Holy Spirit, 1 Corinthians 2:10-13, which gives us the mind of Christ, Vs 16. God will only give His Spirit to those who obey Him, Acts 5:32 thus we must obey Him to recieve His Spirit that we may understand Scripture. Thats why Peter said that lawless men twist Scripture, they have no choice, 2 Peter 3:17.

Once you get to that point then the Bible does indeed interpret itself, “But the Word of the Eternal was to them, ‘Precept upon precept … line upon line … here a little, there a little’…” Isaiah 28:13. But without Gods Spirit one cannot understand His Word.

Thanks for an interesting topic,
GED

Part 1

[quote=Glenamyaglen]Hello all

Hello, and welcome. Hope you will enjoy Catholic Answers.

[quote]. . . one must dig into the Word of God to find the True answers

[/quote]

Please define “the Word of God.” i.e., list the ‘God-given, inspired writings’ that belong in the Bible. They aren’t listed in the Bible, but perhaps you have an inside source that the rest of us don’t know about, some secret knowledge. Also, what are the chapters and verses that state that the written Word of God contains all the “True answers”?

… we practice True Apostolic Christianity, as the True Jesus Christ of the Bible, and the first century Church did do as described in the Book of Acts.

Did you and other members each sell all your property and lay it at the feet of the Apostles (or their successors)? Or, sell all your possessions and pool the proceeds for the use of the community? Do you own everything in common? Are church services held in the members’ houses? Do you attend synagogue before attending church? Do you worship in a liturgical rite patterned after the Jewish synagogue that is now or has ever been called “the breaking of the bread”? Was your church founded by Jesus Christ for the salvation of the world before the NT was written or ever conceived?

What’s the name of your church? When was it founded and by whom? Does any document testify to its existence in the first century, and do other records attest to its continution from the first century to the present day, teaching the same doctrines?

Does your church disregard the New Testament (there wasn’t a NT or a Bible as we know them until the beginning of the 5th century), and use only the 46 books of the Greek Septuagint that are in the Catholic Bible as your Scripture?

Were members of your church persecuted by the Romans? Where is your evidence? Where are the ruins of your first and second century churches? Where is the ancient literature your church produced?

An “apostolic church,” by definition, must have been founded by Jesus Christ and taught by the Apostles. It must have written the NT, since the Church clearly predates the NT and is referred to in the Scriptures as the “household of God, the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth.” An “apostolic church” must be 2,000 years old. Does this describe your church?

I read earlier . . . that, “all the differant denominations prove that the Bible does not interpret itself”. . . we are to be of the same mind . . . if you have just a regular Strongs concordance and look up the word “mind”, you will learn what mind to have . . .

The NT was not written in English.

Continued
[/quote]

Part 2

. . . “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all SPEAK THE SAME THING,. and that there be NO DIVISIONS among you, but that you be PERFECTLY JOINED TOGETHER IN THE SAME MIND and in the SAME JUDGEMENT.”

Paul is pleading with the people in the local churches that he founded that they maintain the faith ***as he taught it ***and not deviate from it. Which Apostle founded your church? Was it your church that canonized the NT and named it, canonized the OT and named it, formed the Bible and named it? Where is your evidence?

. . .differant denominations do not prove that the Bible doesn’t interpret itself, it does prove that they are not any part of Gods True Church . . . all these groups are divided, of differing minds. They constitute a majority of the many false teachers and teachings that Christ warned about in Matthew 24.

All the different doctrines held by these different denominations are based on yet another interpretation of the Bible. If the Bible interprets itself, they would all be teaching like doctrines. In fact, there would not be denominations at all.

Jesus Christ said that we are to live by every Word of God, Matthew 4:4, Luke 4:4!

Then why do you use an incomplete Bible? But the Word was not all written down.

The Word of God says to not lean on our own understanding . . .

then why do you – or the understanding of your church’s founder?

. . . He [Jesus] confirmed that in order to understand Gods Word one must obey God . . . One can only understand Gods Word through the Holy Spirit . . . which gives us the mind of Christ. . . How did the first Christians who were taught personally by the Apostles before the NT was ever written understand the term “God’s Word”?

God will only give His Spirit to those who obey Him . . . we must obey Him to receive His Spirit that we may understand Scripture.

If “obeying Him to receive His Spirit” is a prerequisite to understanding Scripture, how do you know you’re reading the Scriptures correctly to learn how to obey him? It’s not logical. The only truly logical church is the Catholic Church – that’s why I’m Catholic.:smiley:

Thats why Peter said that lawless men twist Scripture, they have no choice, 2 Peter 3:17.

Your Bible is incomplete, having been cut by Martin Luther. Please define “Scripture.”

Once you get to that point then the Bible does indeed interpret itself, “But the Word of the Eternal was to them, ‘Precept upon precept … line upon line … here a little, there a little’…” Isaiah 28:13. But without Gods Spirit one cannot understand His Word.

Obviously, only those who agree with your take on the Bible have God’s Spirit.:stuck_out_tongue:

Only those who have God’s Spirit can interpret His Word correctly.

I interpret His Word correctly.

Therefore, I have God’s Spirit and those who do not agree with me do not have it.

To borrow your phrase, I don’t want to be hurtful, but these are questions that must be answered so I can check out your claim that you belong to the “True Apostolic Church.”

There is the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church with the history to prove it. All other churches came into existence in or after the 16th century. Most are 20th century innovations.

The Church did not come out of the Bible; rather, the Bible came out of the Church.

Peace be with you, Jay

Hello Kathlikos,

Listen I dont want to continue in this argument, its foolishness. You obviously believe what you believe, a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still. I will close by saying that Peter was not the first pope, he had a wife, Matthew 8:14, and the first thing Christ said to him after giving him the keys to the Kingdom was get behind Me Satan, Matthew 16:23, that doesn’t sound like someone thats infallable to me. Whats more the Book of Romans proves that Peter was not in Rome, if he had been there then Paul would not have needed to come there that they might be established, Romans 1:11. Plus Paul makes no mention of Peter in the closing chapter of the Book of Romans when he is listing all those there.

We are people who have kept the True Christ of the Bibles Word, we are the True Church that He founded, the little flock, Luke 12:32. We keep the laws and Holy Days and everything else that He commands His people to do, Matthew28:18-20. You will know who we are soon enough, everyone will. We are 2000 years old, but unlike the catholic church we have not tried to change everything the Bible teaches with our own added books. We have kept the faith once delivered, Jude 3, we have kept His Word.

Take care

[quote=Glenamyaglen]I will close by saying that Peter was not the first pope, he had a wife, Matthew 8:14
[/quote]

So?

[quote=Glenamyaglen]and the first thing Christ said to him after giving him the keys to the Kingdom was get behind Me Satan, Matthew 16:23, that doesn’t sound like someone thats infallable to me.
[/quote]

That sounds like you don’t understand what the Church means when it says a Pope is infallible.

[quote=Glenamyaglen]Whats more the Book of Romans proves that Peter was not in Rome, if he had been there then Paul would not have needed to come there that they might be established, Romans 1:11.
[/quote]

The Apostle Paul did not establish the Christian community in Rome. Romans 1:11 reads: “For I am longing to see you so that I can convey to you some spiritual gift that will be a lasting strength.” Quite obviously, there had to have been Christians in Rome before Paul wrote these words; otherwise, to whom would he have been writing?

[quote=Glenamyaglen] Plus Paul makes no mention of Peter in the closing chapter of the Book of Romans when he is listing all those there.
[/quote]

The Epistle to the Romans isn’t about the founding of the Christian community in Rome. It is a letter written to that Christian community that was already there prior to both Paul’s visit to Rome as well as, quite obviously, the Epistle itself. Paul didn’t go to Rome until after his arrest (circa A.D. 60).

That Paul doesn’t mention Peter is irrelevant. An argument from silence is invalid and quite beside the point. Peter was brought to Rome after Paul’s Epistle to the Romans was written (circa A.D. 57 compared to circa A.D. 62). Peter did indeed go to Rome. His own words in 1 Peter confirm this. So does a rather large corpus of extra-biblical historical and archaeological evidence.

[quote=Glenamyaglen]We are people who have kept the True Christ of the Bibles Word, we are the True Church that He founded, the little flock, Luke 12:32. We keep the laws and Holy Days and everything else that He commands His people to do, Matthew28:18-20. You will know who we are soon enough, everyone will.
[/quote]

Your self-proclaimed religion of “Apostolic Cristianity” may make these claims, but that doesn’t make the claims true.

As to your vague promise/threat of impending knowledge: :rolleyes:

– Mark L. Chance.

It wasn’t a promise or a threat, just the inevitable fact. Matthew 24:14

As to Romans 1:11, established - in both the KJV, & NKJV comes from the Greek “sterizo” which means to *set fast - to turn resolutely *in a certain direction, to establish, (Strongs 4741 Greek)
There were people there in Rome who heard the True gospel of Jesus Christ, probably many of them heard it in Jerusalem, Acts 2:5, Paul heard of them because their faith was spoken of throughout the whole world, Romans 1:8. Paul was wanting to go to Rome for a reason, not just to visit, he wanted to go there that he and they could be encouraged together by the mutual faith they shared, Vs 12, he was already established, but he wanted them to be as well, Vs 11.
Though Peter was used to open the door to the Gentiles, Acts 10:28, 44-48, Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles, 2 Timothy 1:11, Romans 15:16, Acts 9:15.

At any rate, I dont want to argue any more, its fruitless.

Take care, GED

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