Scripture - a guide for Faith & Morals not Science & History


#1

Hi,

How much is this statement true? Scripture - a guide for Faith & Morals not Science & History It seems most of what is said about science and history is true in the scriptures, but still it isn't a science or history book.

What does that mean and when did that come into effect?

Was it during the time of Galileo?

Did the Church have to change its position on how to interpret the scriptures regarding science? I am assuming the interpretation wasn't ex-Cathedra, since ex-Cathedra is only for faith and morals, correct?

I heard the CD Abba or Allah by Scott Hahn that mentioned something about the biblical historical error below. It is a historical error since the Jews / Israelites where in bondage in Egypt and Babylon. Maybe there is another context?

"Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham, and have never been in bondage to any one. How is it that you say, ‘You will be made free’?”"(John 8:31-33)

I tried to trace verse 92 back to the origins and see if i could find my answer, but couldn't.

92 "The whole body of the faithful. . . cannot err in matters of belief. This characteristic is shown in the supernatural appreciation of faith (sensus fidei) on the part of the whole people, when, from the bishops to the last of the faithful, they manifest a universal consent in matters of faith and morals."55

890 The mission of the Magisterium is linked to the definitive nature of the covenant established by God with his people in Christ. It is this Magisterium's task to preserve God's people from deviations and defections and to guarantee them the objective possibility of professing the true faith without error. Thus, the pastoral duty of the Magisterium is aimed at seeing to it that the People of God abides in the truth that liberates. To fulfill this service, Christ endowed the Church's shepherds with the charism of infallibility in matters of faith and morals. The exercise of this charism takes several forms:


#2

Perhaps it would help you to understand that the Church did not condemn Galileo for his statement that the Earth was Round, or that it was not the center of the universe. He was not the first to state this, and this was not contrary to the Teaching of hte church.
He was condemned for therefore concluding and teaching that this fact therefore disproved the existence of God and the meaning of Salvation.

This is a direct parallel to the fact that the Catholic Church never criticized Darwin, who took pains to state in his works that they did not disprove the Christian belief that God made Man - however many other scientists have since tried to draw that conclusion.

just as today we have noted personalities like Richard Dawkins, who try to lean on extensive scientific background in Biology or other scientific spheres to claim that because some scientific fact or opinion exists that the whole concept of faith is incorrect.

They make the mistake of turning their opinion of science, and their atheistic belief system into a whole new a-theist religion. they are philosophically entitled to their religious belief that there cannot possibly be a god, but they commit scientific fraud by claiming to have any scientific evidence for this.

Another equivalence would be to say that because Jesus was not born in the year 1 that therefore the whole bible is a work of fiction by men writing in the year 300. The first fact has no bearing on the subsequent claim - just as the presence of a fly on the wall of this room has no bearing on the quantity of diesel in the tank of my car outside.

Some of the “Science” claiming that there could not be a God is so convoluted as to be perverse: e.g. some people claim that the theory of a Big Bang disproves the concept of Creation.
I would suggest that on the contrary our best current scientific understanding is that the Big Bang theory actually supports the religious position that

  1. There was a Void. there was no time so space no matter.
  2. There was a moment of Creation
  3. The created Universe has time as one of many dimensions.
  4. there will be a time when the universe ends. Time itself will therefore end.
  5. The Universe cannot have created itself, therefore it is likely that some influence from outside this universe had a causative influence.

The universe exists within a multiverse about which we know almost nothing. Time and Space are dimensions of this universe.

Our Faith tells us that God created the Universe. He created time. that the world will end. that time will end. That the universe exists within God, and only exists because of His Will.

Our Faith is in keeping with the best available scientific knowledge and theory. Atheism lack logical consistancy with this current understanding and relies on “we don’t know and cant know” what caused the Big Bang - but it cant have been God 'cause we know he dosn’t exist" - sorry but that’s got a gaping big hole in it.

My position is that I accept the theory of the big Bang, and trust on Faith that the Big Bang was the start of God’s Creation, It is in keeping with the artistic and figurative descriptions about that creation as described in His Revelation as described in Genesis but those descriptions are figurative, as they needed to be comprehensible to the people the Spirit inspired to write them and pass them down the generations until the could be written down.


#3

Don't confuse it. Scripture does account for history, as well as faith and morals. It tells the history of our faith, the most prominent aspects of the life of Christ, etc. It's scientific content must be taken lightly because of the author's lack of knowledge of what we know now, but that doesn't mean that events didn't actually happen. The Creation most certainly happened, that doesn't mean that it happened word for word as it is depicted in Scripture, but it certainly happened. The Flood, again, while it may not have happened word for word, even secular studies have shown the potential for a large flooding of that region a long time ago. The history depicted in the Scripture happened.

Though, I think I read that many biblical scholars believe that the book of Job is just a story (not actual history), but that it still has canonical value.


#4

[quote="GodHeals, post:1, topic:314014"]
Hi,

How much is this statement true? Scripture - a guide for Faith & Morals not Science & History It seems most of what is said about science and history is true in the scriptures, but still it isn't a science or history book.

What does that mean and when did that come into effect?

Was it during the time of Galileo?

Did the Church have to change its position on how to interpret the scriptures regarding science? I am assuming the interpretation wasn't ex-Cathedra, since ex-Cathedra is only for faith and morals, correct?

From the Catholic Encyclopedia on these issues.

newadvent.org/cathen/06342b.htm :thumbsup:

I tried to trace verse 92 back to the origins and see if i could find my answer, but couldn't.

[/quote]


#5

[quote="bzkoss236, post:3, topic:314014"]
Don't confuse it. Scripture does account for history, as well as faith and morals. It tells the history of our faith, the most prominent aspects of the life of Christ, etc. It's scientific content must be taken lightly because of the author's lack of knowledge of what we know now, but that doesn't mean that events didn't actually happen. The Creation most certainly happened, that doesn't mean that it happened word for word as it is depicted in Scripture, but it certainly happened. The Flood, again, while it may not have happened word for word, even secular studies have shown the potential for a large flooding of that region a long time ago. The history depicted in the Scripture happened.

Though, I think I read that many biblical scholars believe that the book of Job is just a story (not actual history), but that it still has canonical value.

[/quote]

"must be taken lightly" By what authority can you make that statement? Those who wrote scripture were inspired by the Holy Spirit. I think it is completely wrong to say that they did not know this or that. They were not relying just on their own knowledge. The Bible is called the Word of the Lord (or God) for a reason.

Peace,
Ed


#6

[quote="edwest2, post:5, topic:314014"]
"must be taken lightly" By what authority can you make that statement? Those who wrote scripture were inspired by the Holy Spirit. I think it is completely wrong to say that they did not know this or that. They were not relying just on their own knowledge. The Bible is called the Word of the Lord (or God) for a reason.

Peace,
Ed

[/quote]

Inspiration does not mean that the biblical authors were given information about science that the people of the time didn't know about. And by what authority do you have to say that I am wrong?

If you look at the 4 different Gospels, all of the same account, but from different points of view. Inspiration worked on a personal level with the author. And on such a personal level, the inspiration of the Holy Spirit would work to protect what the author knew, whether from a first person witness account, to further accounts.

Can you give an example from Scripture where scientific information, past the knowledge of those at the time, is written?


#7

I saw the below, but it seems not to be inline with the Catholic Catechism? Any thoughts?

Inspiration of the whole subject matter

For the last three centuries there have been author-theologians, exegetes, and especially apologists — such as Holden, Rohling, Lenormant, di Bartolo, and others — who maintained, with more or less confidence, that inspiration was limited to moral and dogmatic teaching, excluding everything in the Bible relating to history and the natural sciences. They think that, in this way, a whole mass of difficulties against the inerrancy of the bible would be removed. but the Church has never ceased to protest against this attempt to restrict the inspiration of the sacred books. This is what took place when Mgr d'Hulst, Rector of the Institut Catholique of Paris, gave a sympathetic account of this opinion in "Le Correspondant" of 25 Jan., 1893. The reply was quickly forthcoming in the Encyclical Providentissimus Deus of the same year. In that Encyclical Leo XIII said:

It will never be lawful to restrict inspiration merely to certain parts of the Holy Scripture, or to grant that the sacred writer could have made a mistake. Nor may the opinion of those be tolerated, who, in order to get out of these difficulties, do not hesitate to suppose that Divine inspiration extends only to what touches faith and morals, on the false plea that the true meaning is sought for less in what God has said than in the motive for which He has said it. (Denz., 1950) 

In fact, a limited inspiration contradicts Christian tradition and theological teaching.
newadvent.org/cathen/08045a.htm


#8

[quote="edwest2, post:5, topic:314014"]
"must be taken lightly" By what authority can you make that statement? Those who wrote scripture were inspired by the Holy Spirit. I think it is completely wrong to say that they did not know this or that. They were not relying just on their own knowledge. The Bible is called the Word of the Lord (or God) for a reason.

Peace,
Ed

[/quote]

Exactly! I personally think people get off track when they assume that the Biblical authors wrote based on their limited knowledge and that we read Scripture as if its not to be believed fully because it lacks sophistication. Somewhere along the way people seem to forget that the authors where the physical instruments of the Holy Spirit, that is, God used their pen to write what He wanted to say to us. Its not a matter of us lowering ourselves to the level of Scripture but its God's words being simplified enough for little humans to grasp some of the great mysteries of what is.


#9

[quote="COPLAND_3, post:8, topic:314014"]
its God's words being simplified enough for little humans to grasp some of the great mysteries of what is.

[/quote]

That's what I'm trying to say. The biblical authors wouldn't have used science that was not yet available, because people wouldn't have understood it back then. I'm saying the Holy Spirit used what they did know and would understand, so that it could be understood by others.


#10

I am still trying to find out where it says the bible is error free ONLY for faith and morals, not science and scripture.

I saw the below, but it seems not to be inline with the Catholic Catechism? Can someone please explain if i am on the right tract in finding an answer?

890 The mission of the Magisterium is linked to the definitive nature of the covenant established by God with his people in Christ. It is this Magisterium's task to preserve God's people from deviations and defections and to guarantee them the objective possibility of professing the true faith without error. Thus, the pastoral duty of the Magisterium is aimed at seeing to it that the People of God abides in the truth that liberates. To fulfill this service, Christ endowed the Church's shepherds with the charism of infallibility in matters of faith and morals. The exercise of this charism takes several forms:

Inspiration of the whole subject matter

For the last three centuries there have been author-theologians, exegetes, and especially apologists — such as Holden, Rohling, Lenormant, di Bartolo, and others — who maintained, with more or less confidence, that inspiration was limited to moral and dogmatic teaching, excluding everything in the Bible relating to history and the natural sciences. They think that, in this way, a whole mass of difficulties against the inerrancy of the bible would be removed. but the Church has never ceased to protest against this attempt to restrict the inspiration of the sacred books. This is what took place when Mgr d'Hulst, Rector of the Institut Catholique of Paris, gave a sympathetic account of this opinion in "Le Correspondant" of 25 Jan., 1893. The reply was quickly forthcoming in the Encyclical Providentissimus Deus of the same year. In that Encyclical Leo XIII said:

It will never be lawful to restrict inspiration merely to certain parts of the Holy Scripture, or to grant that the sacred writer could have made a mistake. Nor may the opinion of those be tolerated, who, in order to get out of these difficulties, do not hesitate to suppose that Divine inspiration extends only to what touches faith and morals, on the false plea that the true meaning is sought for less in what God has said than in the motive for which He has said it. (Denz., 1950)

In fact, a limited inspiration contradicts Christian tradition and theological teaching.
newadvent.org/cathen/08045a.htm


#11

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