Gregory of Nyssa on Sola Scriptura

“The generality of men still fluctuate in their opinions about this, which are as erroneous as they are numerous. As for ourselves, if the Gentile philosophy, which deals methodically with all these points, were really adequate for a demonstration, it would certainly be superfluous to add a discussion on the soul to those speculations. But while the latter proceeded, on the subject of the soul, as far in the direction of supposed consequences as the thinker pleased, we are not entitled to such license, I mean that of affirming what we please; we make the Holy Scriptures the rule and the measure of every tenet; we necessarily fix our eyes upon that, and approve that alone which may be made to harmonize with the intention of those writings.” [Gregory of Nyssa: Dogmatic Treatises “on the Soul and the Resurrection”, P. 439. Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series: Volume V.]

Is this Father of the Church saying that Scripture is the final authority, and that only those teachings/doctrines that are supported by Scripture are binding? Does anyone know anything about this church Father and his comments?

[quote=FightingFat]“The generality of men still fluctuate in their opinions about this, which are as erroneous as they are numerous. As for ourselves, if the Gentile philosophy, which deals methodically with all these points, were really adequate for a demonstration, it would certainly be superfluous to add a discussion on the soul to those speculations. But while the latter proceeded, on the subject of the soul, as far in the direction of supposed consequences as the thinker pleased, we are not entitled to such license, I mean that of affirming what we please; we make the Holy Scriptures the rule and the measure of every tenet; we necessarily fix our eyes upon that, and approve that alone which may be made to harmonize with the intention of those writings.” [Gregory of Nyssa: Dogmatic Treatises “on the Soul and the Resurrection”, P. 439. Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series: Volume V.]

Is this Father of the Church saying that Scripture is the final authority, and that only those teachings/doctrines that are supported by Scripture are binding? Does anyone know anything about this church Father and his comments?
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Seems to me that the key word is “harmonize”. Surely, everything the CC teaches can be “harmonized” with scripture? It doesn’t mean that everything needs be explicitly mentioned in scripture, just harmonized, or be consistent with scripture.

"It suffices for proof of our statement that we have a tradition coming down from the Fathers, an inheritance as it were, by succession from the Apostles through the saints who came after them."
[font=Arial]Gregory of Nyssa, Against Eunomius 4:6 (c. A.D. 384).* *[/font]
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citing Gregory of Nyssa << I mean that of affirming what we please; we make the Holy Scriptures the rule and the measure of every tenet… >>

Yes, and if this is sola scriptura then apparently Vatican Council II taught sola scriptura very clearly here:

“…since they [the Scriptures] are inspired by God and committed to writing once and for all time, they present God’s own Word in an unalterable form, and they make the voice of the Holy Spirit sound again and again in the words of the prophets and apostles. It follows that all the preaching of the Church, as indeed the entire Christian religion, should be nourished and ruled by sacred Scripture. In the sacred books the Father who is in heaven comes lovingly to meet his children, and talks with them. And such is the force and power of the Word of God that it can serve the Church as her support and vigor, and the children of the Church as strength for their faith, food for the soul, and a pure and lasting fount of spiritual life. Scripture verifies in the most perfect way the words: ‘The Word of God is living and active’ [Heb 4:12] and ‘is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified’ [Acts 20:32; cf. 1 Thess 2:13].” (Dei Verbum 21)

Gregory of Nyssa also wrote on tradition and Church authority as already cited:

“Let [Eunomius] first show, then, that the Church has believed in vain that the Only-begotten Son truly exists, not made such through adoption by a Father falsely so-called, but existing as such according to nature, by generation from Him Who Is, not estranged from the nature of Him who begot Him…It suffices for the PROOF of our statement that we have a TRADITION coming down from the FATHERS, an inheritance as it were, by SUCCESSION from the Apostles through the SAINTS who came after them.” ( C. Eunomius 3(4) )

“…I say, that the Church teaches this in plain language, that the Only-begotten is essentially God, very God of the essence of the very God, how OUGHT one who OPPOSES HER DECISIONS to overthrow the preconceived opinion?” ( C. Eunomius 4,6 )

It is what the Church teaches the Bible teaches, not merely what the Bible teaches.

Phil P

Every ECF quote that seems to support SS I have ever seen has also had a counterpart by the same ECF supporting Tradition transmitted through the Church through Apostolic Succession. We have to make sure we read everything these guys write in context with everything else.

[quote=Genesis315]Every ECF quote that seems to support SS I have ever seen has also had a counterpart by the same ECF supporting Tradition transmitted through the Church through Apostolic Succession. We have to make sure we read everything these guys write in context with everything else.

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I agree, in fact the real joke is every time I see someone post a supposedly pro-SS ECF quote I always ask the person to also see some of the specific things (eg Baptismal regeneration) the ECF believed and used Scripture to back it up…well it turns out the protestant wont agree with the ECF’s teaching even if the ECF got it from Scripture!

Infact, speaking of Gregory of Nazianzus, the CCC quotes him on par1216:
Baptism is God’s most beautiful and magnificent gift. . . .We call it gift, grace, anointing, enlightenment, garment of immortality, bath of rebirth, seal, and most precious gift. It is called gift because it is conferred on those who bring nothing of their own; grace since it is given even to the guilty; Baptism because sin is buried in the water; anointing for it is priestly and royal as are those who are anointed; enlightenment because it radiates light; clothing since it veils our shame; bath because it washes; and seal as it is our guard and the sign of God’s Lordship.
I want to see a protestant who talks like that.

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