Q. It seems strange to me that you would reject the Scriptures as our soul authority today, but you still try to establish the Catholic doctrines with it, demonstrating that you recognize its authority over their tradition.
BFHU: The Scriptures are authoritative but so is Catholic TRADITION because both spring from the same SOURCE: Jesus Christ’s teaching to the Apostles.
BFHU:I and most apologists cite scripture to demonstrate Catholic doctrine not because we think it is more authoritative than what Jesus Himself taught the Apostles, otherwise known as oral TRADITION, but because we know it is the only authority Protestants will consider. So we try to answer your questions and accusations using what we can find in Scripture. But don’t get the idea that our doctrines are based on such flimsy evidence. We don’t derive our beliefs like Protestants. Protestants look into scripture and then decide to formulate doctrines, unless they have received without criticism Catholic doctrine like the Trinity, Virgin Birth etc.
Our beliefs, existed before anything was ever written down. The Bible is derived from the ORAL TEACHINGS of Jesus to His Apostles and the Apostles to us.
That is why the Bible does not contradict anything Catholics believe. Both the NT and Catholic teaching originated with Jesus.
Q. You seem to understand the fact that if their Traditions contradict the Bible then they cannot be true.
Q. Unless you believe such contradiction indicates that the Bible is untrue!
Q. I trust that you would agree that if the Bible had real (rather than merely alleged) contradictions we would not accept it as The Word of God.
BFHU: No. It is an article of Faith that Scripture is the infallible Word of God.
Q. Why not apply this very simple and rational principle to the Catholic Traditions as well? Those Traditions contradict not only the Bible, but one another as well!
BFHU:There are no Traditions that contradict the Bible or each other. They only contradict a Protestant INTERPRETATION the Bible. That is the difference. It is very amusing to me that so many Protestants claim to have an infallible interpretation of Sacred Scripture and thus able to critique Catholic Tradition.
Q. You believe, for instance, that Christ promised that His holy Spirit would guide all Christians in a direct and miraculous way.
BFHU:No, I don’t. There are some Protestant denominations that teach they are able to be led infallibly by the Holy Spirit and cite for proof of this where Jesus says,
“John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Q. You go so far as to claim that we all believe that. This is an erroneous assumption. I don’t believe that, and I am not alone.
BFHU: Yeah me neither…
Q. If the Catholic theologians really did use flawless exegesis they would have noticed that Jesus was not speaking to the Apostles successors when He said those things in the upper room, rather, He was speaking directly to His Apostles only.
BFHU: Exactly! You are the first Protestant I have heard say that. And therefore the promise was only given to the Apostles and their successors..the Bishops of the Catholic Church.
Q. Where do they get the notion that the Apostles successors were being spoken to in that room?
BFHU: We don’t have that notion. The successors were ordained as “faithful men able to teach” and empowered by the Holy Spirit in a way that is exclusive to our Bishops and not even had by a priest, let alone the laity.
Q. We must hold to what we know His apostles taught. The Apostles were guided into all truth, and they commanded Christians in general to earnestly contend for the faith once and for all time delivered to the saints (Jude 3).
BFHU: We totally agree. And that Truth is what is contained in Scripture and Tradition.
Q. Paul commanded that if any man, even one of the Apostles themselves, or even an angel from heaven were to preach any thing that contradicted that faith once delivered, they were to be accursed (Gal. 1: 6-8)!
Filed under: Tradition |