Lutheran Answer About Jesus Authorizing New Testament


#1

For kicks and giggles, I posted the following the following question to a Lutheran Q&A forum to see how they would answer:

**It seems clear that Jesus gave authority to pass on his teaching to the church, but where did Jesus give instructions that the Christian faith should be based exclusively on a book?
I’ve been searching the Bible and other than the specific command to John to pen the Revelation, I can’t find anything that says that Jesus told His apostles to write anything down and compile it into an authoritative book. **

This is the answer I got back:

**There are many Bible references to the Lord’s channeling his authoritative word through Old Testament prophets and writers, with the result being the Old Testament Scriptures. Hebrews 1:1, 2 Timothy 3:14-17, and 2 Peter 1:19-21 would be samples of this fact mentioned in the New Testament.
Your question seems to be focused primarily on the Lord’s use of apostles for the creation of the New Testament Scriptures. Your observation is generally correct: there is no emphasis on “specific commands” of Jesus to the apostles on this subject. The words assuring the original disciples (who were sent out as apostles) of the Holy Spirit’s guidance (e.g., John 16:12-15) speak to their qualifications, but not to an explicit command. The likelihood that God would follow the same kind of pattern he chose in the Old Testament (that is, provide authoritative Writings) is perfectly logical as well, but still not an explicit command.

Our conviction that the apostolic writings which comprise the New Testament are none other than God’s authoritative Word channeled through these writers does not rest on such a command. It is based on the self-authenticating nature of the Scriptures as they convince us of their reliability and authority.

There are other factors that we use as well–factors that are closer to what you are apparently looking for. Here we may speak of their apostolic origin or authorship, their internal testimony (they often claim to be authoritative and divinely inspired), and their full agreement with all that the Old Testament Scriptures had said and promised. The result is that we are convinced that what Paul said about himself and his fellow apostles in, for example, 1 Corinthians 2:6-16 is true and trustworthy.**

I would like to respond but am not sure what to say in response.


#2

Ask them where the New Testament came from.

Ask them if the New Testament came from the Catholic Church.

Ask them what Jesus meant when he said:
…This** is** my body, whoever eats my body and drinks my blood will have eternal life … (Jesus didn’t say it was only a symbol)

and to Peter, …Upon this rock build thy Church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail…(Jesus meant the Catholic Church)


#3

[quote=Good_Papist]**…It is based on the self-authenticating nature of the Scriptures as they convince us of their reliability and authority. **

[/quote]

Reliance on the Mormon “burning in the bosom”…
**

There are other factors that we use as well–factors that are closer to what you are apparently looking for. Here we may speak of their apostolic origin or authorship

**
Reliance on Sacred Tradition, as it is only history and the Fathers that affirm their actual authorship (see: The Epistle of Barnabas or The Gospel of Thomas, then have them show how they know it is not actually authored by the Apostle)…**

their internal testimony (they often claim to be authoritative and divinely inspired),

**Reliance on their own claim to divine inspiration, just like the Qur’an or the writings of Mary Baker Eddy (even though most books of the Bible don’t claim divine inspiration or claim any other books by name to be inspired)…
**

and their full agreement with all that the Old Testament Scriptures had said and promised.

**I could write something “in full agreement” with the OT. Doesn’t mean it’s inspired (and I don’t think the Jews would agree that the NT is in “full agreement with the OT”)…

You may ask him to pick a religion and stick to it. Here, he has advocated the claims of the Mormons, the Muslims, the Seventh Day Adventists, the Judiazers, and the Catholics. I believe the argument for the Catholics is the most sound, but until he examines what he is proposing he is likely to have difficulty eliminating the other religions…

God Bless,
RyanL


#4

The question is more than just whether the bible is accurate and inspired. The issue is whether the bible alone is sufficient for teaching doctrine. (i.e. sola scriptura) The answer to that is no. Nothing in the history of the church or the writing of the bible suggests that the Bible is to take the place of the Church with teaching authority. I find it interesting that the responding Lutheran would point to Jewish tradition as authority for a “bible alone” position - where it was quite clear - from the Bible - that the jews had both sacred texts AND a teaching authority in the priesthood. If christian tradition was to mirror the jewish tradition - then where is the protestant teaching authority IN ADDITION to the texts?

The only *honest * response by a protestant theologian is that sola scriptura is the assumption going in to the study of the bible, because the only alternative would be the recognition of the need for an outside teaching authority. So, protestant thinking is - “If not ‘sola scripture’ then what other options are there?” Catholicism?!! :bigyikes: Hence - sola scriptura must be upheld by protestants - or else acknowledge the scriptural integrity of the teaching authority of the Catholic Church. In other words, sola scriptura is at the root of the “protest.”


#5

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