Sola Scriptura


#1

It seems to me that in any debate about Sola Scriptura the real, fundamental question isn’t what does a given passage of scripture mean, but rather why should we refer to the “canonical scriptures’ at all. Instead of citing, and then debating the meaning of I Thessalonians, or Matthew 13, the first question is: why don’t we cite I Enoch, or the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Mary, or the Diatesseron, etc? The answer is obvious: The Church, the Body of Christ indwelled by the Holy Spirit, gave us the individual books of the bible, formed the canon of scripture, told Marcion and others, “this but not this”, and it is the Church that determines what that body of writings means. The Church existed before the first word of the New Testament was ever written. Scripture presupposes the Church. Scripture is an outgrowth of the lived experience of the Catholic Church, and this is the context that is needed to really understand the Word of God. True, scripture and Tradition flow from the same source, two strands of the same rope, but in terms of historical precedence the Church comes first. Why do we call the Gospel of Matthew, “Matthew”, why don’t we call it, the Gospel of Jesus, or the Gospel of Mary, again, the answer is obviously, “the Church”. When we engage in Sola Scriptura debates with Protestants as soon as we begin to argue about what a given passage of scripture means we are playing on their field, we have implicitly adopted their rules, and to “some extent” have compromised the main strength of the Catholic position. Questions about the material, or formal, sufficiency of scripture, take second place to the real question of why do we have this scripture at all, why not the book of Mormon, the New World bible, etc.
I would appreciate any feedback can I get on this?
Thanks


#2

you make a very good point…

the idea of sola scriptura has not made sense to me from the second I heard about it.

when protestants say: Where is the doctrine of ____ in the Bible?

I answer: what makes you think all doctrines originate from the Bible?

the idea of Sola Scriptura automatically self-destructs on itself. “All doctrines must originate from the Bible… EXCEPT this one.”

this doctrine that states that all Doctrine and Dogma must be biblical is UNBIBLICAL.


#3

What was it in the early Church that made Christians lay down their lives for it? It was the love of Christ in the Eucharist… There is no other explanation.

Today it’s Bible study and preaching vs. the Sacraments (the path of holiness).

I just don’t know which Church is which… I love the RC Church because that’s where i’ve come to know Christ. I just don’t know if all their complex rules are necessary.


#4

[quote=Caldera]I just don’t know if all their complex rules are necessary.
[/quote]

What complex rules are you talking about? I’m trying to think about what you could be referring to and all I can really think of is possibly liturgical norms, but even they could not really be called complex.


#5

Genesis315,

-Detailing what is allowed inside the bedroom inside of marriage.

-Contraception as something harmful when they allow smoking and drinking.

-Dogmas such as the Marian Dogmas of late which create another obstacle for already separated brethren without any proof, and completely unnecessary to make them binding if they have any concern for unity. Otherwise, it seems like nothing more than a power struggle for continued authority.

Don’t even get me started on the creation stories in Genesis where they both interpret particular verses, AND use literal translations to enforce doctrines. It’s too full of errors to do that.


#6

[quote=Caldera]Genesis315,

-Detailing what is allowed inside the bedroom inside of marriage.

-Contraception as something harmful when they allow smoking and drinking.
[/quote]

These really aren’t very complex doctrines, IMO. Also, what do smoking and drinking have to do with whether or not contraception is evil? (it is, by the way)


#7

[quote=Caldera]Genesis315,

-Detailing what is allowed inside the bedroom inside of marriage.

-Contraception as something harmful when they allow smoking and drinking.

-Dogmas such as the Marian Dogmas of late which create another obstacle for already separated brethren without any proof, and completely unnecessary to make them binding if they have any concern for unity. Otherwise, it seems like nothing more than a power struggle for continued authority.

Don’t even get me started on the creation stories in Genesis where they both interpret particular verses, AND use literal translations to enforce doctrines. It’s too full of errors to do that.
[/quote]

I used to have those same opinions for the same reasons. I really had to research to find a good reason to change. Now, check my profile. I love NFP!

Now when I deal with my friends on Sola Scriptura, the same things are brought up. Where is that in the Bible? While I agree that it is on their playing field that is where Jesus went…their playing field.

I find the best way to deal with Bible alone arguments is by the issue of authority. After I can get them to question the authority over them currently then I can help them find the Church as their authority.

So the question remains who has the right to say what goes on in the bedroom in a marriage? God. What did he set up to teach us His will for us? The Church. If not the Church helping us to define what is healthy and leads to lifelong marriage then what else?

If I rely on Bible alone I am bound to get it wrong. The Church came first.


#8

exoflare,

Prove to me that contraception is any different than natural family planning (which is allowed by the Church)

If you say that contraception is somehow potentially harmful to a woman, then i will point out that smoking and drinking is also potentially harmful to anyone who chooses to do so.

lights up a cigarette

pours a beer

If you tell me that i need to be open to life since the book of Genesis tells us to “be fertile and multiply”, then i will point out the absurd errors of the creation stories.

It’s all about authority, right?


#9

[quote=Caldera]exoflare,

Prove to me that contraception is any different than natural family planning (which is allowed by the Church)

If you say that contraception is somehow potentially harmful to a woman, then i will point out that smoking and drinking is also potentially harmful to anyone who chooses to do so.

lights up a cigarette

pours a beer

If you tell me that i need to be open to life since the book of Genesis tells us to “be fertile and multiply”, then i will point out the absurd errors of the creation stories.

It’s all about authority, right?
[/quote]

I wasn’t asked but I was already here so I hope it is alright if I answer. This thread is about Sola Scriptura but if you want a thread on the intrinsic evils of contraception we can start a thread on that. It is a favorite topic around here. I have many theories that can compare contraception to drinking and smoking.

non-smoker sips wine while reading Catholic forums

Not being challenging here. Just a topic close to my heart.


#10

midgetface,

lights up another cigarette

pours another beer

(thank God for that at least, eh?) :confused:

Seriously, i do drink and smoke, but in excess which is according to the Church wrong… I used to confess that i smoked in excess when i would go to weekly confession back in the day, and the best i got from a priest one day was that “my sister smokes too”.

I never got any kind of condemning reaction… probably since i have the addiction which lessens the act.


#11

I agree, the addiction lessens the culpability. My dear friend is a chain smoker. We all try to help her quit. So we don’t hijack this thread, I opened an “explaining the evils of contraception” thread under apologetics if you are interested. I am not good at those little internal links or I would put one in here. I am looking forward to conversing on NFP if you are interested.


#12

I think i summed it up in my first post…

It’s Bible study vs. the Sacraments (the true love of Christ and path to holiness)

Sometimes i wonder if i’d be a better Orthodox Christian…

If someone could convince me that the RC Church has this sole authority…

hmph!


#13

Caldera,
Sole authority is the question Catholics try to answer with “Bible Christians.” Bible Christians say, “The Bible is our sole authority.” What is your definition of sole authority? Do you believe it is in the Bible or in the Church? (Orthodox or Catholic Church might be part of the question.)

I am glad you found the love of Christ in the Catholic Church, but it works best if your authority is the Church. Is that the bigger question for you? Is the “question of authority” something else entirely for you?

While I am not out to personally prove The Church has the authority I would want to know if that is your question.


#14

Midgetface,

It’s all about authority.

The RC Church claims they have the authority to bind and loose only… probably since Peter ended up dying there… I don’t know.
The other Churches may very well have that authority too.

The question is which Church is the true Church? Orthodox, or Roman? How can we know for sure? I’ve pointed out some issues that bother me with the Roman teaching, but it doesn’t make me right to say these things…

How can we know for sure? Where is the proof? It’s all about claimed authority, is it not?


#15

Hi Praxis62, :slight_smile:

I know this might shock a lot of people in here, but I put ‘Bible’ first.
Now, to clarify that; I would like to draw your attention to the fact that not all Sola Scriptura, is the same…I know that sounds odd, and it is, but it is true.
If we look to the Early Church Fathers, we find the general concensus, that we should follow tradition, so long as it does not contradict Scripture. This body of thought is shared with the Sola Scriptura believing Lutheran’s, etc. A Lutheran would be able to follow any teaching of the Catholic Church, provided it did not appear to contradict Scripture.
Now, on the other hand, you have those Sola Scriptura followers, who take it literally to mean you can only follow the bible; no seemingly man made traditions are to be adhered to…not sure how that works exactly, as it would seem that they have to make up their own traditions to get their own denomination off the ground…perhaps someone could enlighten me on this subject…
I mean no disrespect to those of other denominations, and apologise if I have offended anyone.
I hope the above explaination, makes sense.

Peace to you and your loved ones. :slight_smile:


#16

The Bible IS Tradition. Everything in the Bible can be found in the LIVING TRADITION of the Church. If all the bibles in the world were to be destroyed, we would still have all the teachings of the Bible in the LIVING TRADITION of the Church.

There was not one single New Testament letter written for 23 +years AFTER Pentacost. Any Protestant study bible will tell you that. The LIVING TRADITION that preserved the Word of God did not die out with the death of the last Apostle or the invention of the printing press. There was no ‘bible’ until the end of the 3rd century, so it took a long time for full acceptance of all the books to be binding on the universal Church. Why did the Church Fathers want to have a bible?

SO THEY WOULD KNOW FOR SURE WHAT COULD BE LEGITIMATELY BE READ DURING THE HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS AND DEVOTIONS.

NOWHERE in the bible does it say the “Word of God” must be enscripturated to be legitimate. In fact, wherever tradition and scripture are listed together in the bible, tradition always comes first.

As Art Sippo aptly puts it:
The Christian Rule of Faith included belief in the Apostolic succession through the Episcopate, the authority of Tradition itself, the authority of Scripture, the three fold ministry (bishop-priest-deacon), the Eucharist as Sacrifice, baptismal regeneration, prayers for the dead, veneration of the Saints, the Seven sacraments, the evangelical counsels, and the Canon of the Bible. All that and others, pre-existed the Canon of the Bible, and the historical evidence is there for anyone who wishes to see it.


#17

2Ti 3:12 Indeed all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,
13 while evil men and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceivers and deceived.
14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned (Tradition) and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it (Magisterium)
15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings (Scripture) which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.
16 All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
17 that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work.
Note that Scripture is not the first thing on his list but the last. And he tells them that the Bible is “profitable” not sufficient to instruct us. It is only when we include Scripture with Tradition and Magisterium that we are “fully equipped.”

I challenge any “sola scripturist” to prove the full doctrine of Scripture (ie., canon, inspiration, inerrancy, authority, etc.) independently of Tradition.

Appealing to scripture as the final authority of itself is circular reasong. And the man of God is either a person who is called directly by God, (followed by signs and wonders) or one who has been ordained by a higher authority. There are no exceptions anywhere in the Bible as to who the man of God*
is, and it is not each individual believer as sola scripturists might think.

  • [font=Times New Roman]Deut. 33:1, [font=Times New Roman]Josh. 14:6, [font=Times New Roman]Judg. 13:6, 8, 1 Sam. 9:8, 1 Kings 17:18,2 Kings 4:21, 32, 2 Chr. 8:14, 1 Tim. 6:11 and many more[font=Times New Roman]

[/font]

[/font][/font][/font]


#18

[quote=Nun_ofthe_Above]Hi Praxis62, :slight_smile:

I know this might shock a lot of people in here, but I put ‘Bible’ first.
Now, to clarify that; I would like to draw your attention to the fact that not all Sola Scriptura, is the same…I know that sounds odd, and it is, but it is true.
If we look to the Early Church Fathers, we find the general concensus, that we should follow tradition, so long as it does not contradict Scripture. This body of thought is shared with the Sola Scriptura believing Lutheran’s, etc. A Lutheran would be able to follow any teaching of the Catholic Church, provided it did not appear to contradict Scripture.
Now, on the other hand, you have those Sola Scriptura followers, who take it literally to mean you can only follow the bible; no seemingly man made traditions are to be adhered to…not sure how that works exactly, as it would seem that they have to make up their own traditions to get their own denomination off the ground…perhaps someone could enlighten me on this subject…
I mean no disrespect to those of other denominations, and apologise if I have offended anyone.
I hope the above explaination, makes sense.

Peace to you and your loved ones. :slight_smile:
[/quote]

Dear NunoftheAbove,

Greetings :slight_smile:

I think you have put these thoughts down very well and I appreciate your explanation. It points to the problem of pride in having fullness of truth. This pride pops its ugly head up on both sides of the argument. A good friend of mine, God bless her soul, used to say, “God knows all, and He’s not telling.”

Peace to you,
Elizabeth


#19

[quote=OMG THEOLOGIST]you make a very good point…

the idea of sola scriptura has not made sense to me from the second I heard about it.

when protestants say: Where is the doctrine of ____ in the Bible?

I answer: what makes you think all doctrines originate from the Bible?

the idea of Sola Scriptura automatically self-destructs on itself. “All doctrines must originate from the Bible… EXCEPT this one.”

this doctrine that states that all Doctrine and Dogma must be biblical is UNBIBLICAL.
[/quote]


#20

[quote=Caldera]Midgetface,

It’s all about authority.

The RC Church claims they have the authority to bind and loose only… probably since Peter ended up dying there… I don’t know.
The other Churches may very well have that authority too.
[/quote]

catholic.com/library/church_papacy.asp

“Owing to the sudden and repeated calamities and misfortunes which have befallen us, we must acknowledge that we have been somewhat tardy in turning our attention to the matters in dispute among you, beloved; and especially that abominable and unholy sedition, alien and foreign to the elect of God, which a few rash and self-willed persons have inflamed to such madness that your venerable and illustrious name, worthy to be loved by all men, has been greatly defamed. . . . Accept our counsel and you will have nothing to regret. . . . If anyone disobey the things which have been said by him [God] through us *, let them know that they will involve themselves in transgression and in no small danger. . . . You will afford us joy and gladness if being obedient to the things which we have written through the Holy Spirit, you will root out the wicked passion of jealousy” (*Letter to the Corinthians *1, 58–59, 63 [A.D. 80]).

Clement of Rome, the fourth, I believe, Pope. He’s saying that those who don’t listen to them are in “no small danger.” Notice how he mentions “things which we have written through the Holy Spirit, you will root out the wicked passion of jealousy.”

“Therefore shall you [Hermas] write two little books and send one to Clement [Bishop of Rome] and one to Grapte. Clement shall then send it to the cities abroad, because that is his duty” (*The Shepherd *2:4:3 [A.D. 80]).

**More power of the pope.

**“Ignatius . . . to the church also which holds the presidency, in the location of the country of the Romans, worthy of God, worthy of honor, worthy of blessing, worthy of praise, worthy of success, worthy of sanctification, and, because you hold the presidency in love, named after Christ and named after the Father” (*Letter to the Romans *1:1 [A.D. 110]).

“You [the church at Rome] have envied no one, but others you have taught. I desire only that what you have enjoined in your instructions may remain in force” (ibid., 3:1).

**Ignatius of Antioch. Notice the phrase “… because you hold the presidency in love…” Presidency. Leadership, head. These people in Rome were the head of the primitive church. In the second selection, he tells that Rome “envied no one, but others you have taught.” Who would envy no one, and teach the others? The head, the leader of course

I’m reading a book on this sort of thing. One thing the author stresses is that even during the heresies that come about in the early Church, they do not attempt to say the Church is not the head, the real one, etc. It wasn’t until the Reformation that anyone really claimed (I’m sure there were a few, somewhere) that the Church did not have authority.

**“Simon Cephas answered and said, ‘You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.’ Jesus answered and said unto him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah: flesh and blood has not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say unto thee also, that you are Cephas, and on this rock will I build my Church; and the gates of hades shall not prevail against it” (*The Diatesseron *23 [A.D. 170]). **

Tatian the Syrian.** More reiteration by a later source that Peter WAS the Rock which Christ meant to build his Church on.

“Was anything withheld from the knowledge of Peter, who is called ‘the rock on which the Church would be built’ [Matt. 16:18] with the power of ‘loosing and binding in heaven and on earth’ [Matt. 16:19]?” (*Demurrer Against the Heretics *22 [A.D. 200]).

“[T]he Lord said to Peter, ‘On this rock I will build my Church, I have given you the keys of the kingdom of heaven [and] whatever you shall have bound or loosed on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven’ [Matt. 16:18–19]. . . . What kind of man are you, subverting and changing what was the manifest intent of the Lord when he conferred this personally upon Peter? Upon you, he says, I will build my Church; and I will give to you the keys” (*Modesty *21:9–10 [A.D. 220]).

Tertullian. More reiteration that Peter WAS the bossman. Notice the phrase ". . . . What kind of man are you, subverting and changing what was the manifest intent of the Lord when he conferred this personally upon Peter? Upon you, he says, I will build my Church; and I will give to you the keys."
*


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