JIML: Based on your explanations for Catholic traditions that are not based in Scripture, one may say that everything that is not spoken in Scripture is OK to do.
BFHU: You have misunderstood. One must listen to Scripture and the Doctrine taught by the Catholic Church. Why do Protestant practice contraception when God killed Onan when he did it?
JIML:I believe it is safer follow what Scripture explicitly says to do, and not to do. Ambiguity is where the devil sneaks in – so if the Bible is silent on stuff, why do something that may be sinful (or may lead someone to sin)? We can only know if we’re living according to God’s will when we can hear God speaking about it in His Word.
BFHU: There is nothing in the Catholic Faith that contradicts the Scripture. Nothing that is taught by the Catholic Church that is a sin. But of course, Catholics sin. But not in obedience to our Faith but by disobedience.
JIML:I’ve been reading throughout this website, and see that many of questions asked are not answered; the answer seems to be: since the Scripture does not prohibit it explicitly (although some practices come very closely to idolatry – and seem that way to many), then it must be OK to practice them.
BFHU: That is because if I can’t give Protestants chapter and verse in Scripture to answer the questions they do not consider it answered. Until a Protestant can PROVE Sola Scriptura from Scripture I am not under any Scriptural obligation to obey it. I only provide the best scripture I can to answer questions. But even when Scripture CLEARLY SUPPORTS Catholic Theology Protestants still wiggle out of it by INTERPRETING IT DIFFERENTLY. Such as,
Savation is NOT BY FAITH ALONE>
JIML:From a logical point of view, it seems kind of unorthodox – since we know that God’s Word is true, we use it as the plum line for our lives in faith.
BFHU: Catholics do also.
JIML:It seems logical not to practice things that Bible does not speak of.
BFHU: Why? If Sola Scriptura was Scriptural then it would be logical. But since the Christian Faith of 2000 years had believed and practiced what the Catholic Church teaches, then it seems a lot MORE logical to practice the Faith of the Church founded by Jesus and His Apostles than a denomination founded by men.
JIML:Traditon, spoken of in the Bible, speaks of REVELATION OF CHRIST spoken and written about by Apostles. Everything that Christ taught the apostles is considered apostolic tradition.
BFHU: I agree.
JIML: Human tradition – rituals, rules, regulations are generally criticized, even condemned by Jesus Himself (the Pharisees, who by wanting to observe the law perfectly, made up many unnecessary rules, that made them miss God and His intentions).
BFHU: Only the traditions that nullified the word of God and examples are given. But St. Paul exhorts us to cling to the traditions he taught by word (Oral Tradition) or writing (Scripture)
JIML:Finally, I just wonder why you would speak so harshly about Protestants, who read the Bible and see that it does not speak about Mary being taken into heaven, and nowhere it says that she was without sin.
BFHU: I don’t speak harshly about Protestants. I used to be a zealous Protestant. You can read my conversion story above on a tab. But Scripture does not say Mary Sinned so why are Protestants so sure she did? It doesn’t say in Scripture that Mary died and was buried. So How can Protestants know this is what happened. Protestants forget about Sola Scriptura when it is not helpful to make their case.
JIML:Why is it wrong to take Jesus at His Word, when He says that He Himself intercedes for us before the Father?
BFHU: It is not wrong. We do this. Show me one place where the Catholic Church does not take Jesus at his word.
JIML:Why is it so wrong (based on what you say) to rely solely on Scripture?
BFHU: Because Protestants criticize the Catholic Church for beliefs not found in Scripture and yet Protestants also hold beliefs not found in scripture. And because Protestants have a limited Faith since it rejects the Fullness of the Faith found in the Church founded by Jesus and ALL of His teachings.
JIML:Isn’t Christ and only Christ enough for our salvation? Isn’t only God who can forgive, justify, sanctify and glorify? No protestant will tell you we do not need the Church, but only Christ is the foundation of the Church. No man, but Jesus. Peter – yes the first church member, the church planter ordained by God, but still a mere man. Only Christ will remain after the judgment. All else – all human tradition – Protestant or Catholic will burn in the fire. What is truly of God will remain – and that is the Word of God given to the Church.
BFHU: I agree but that Word is NOT only what got written down. Jesus is the WORD. and there were other teachings that were passed down orally.
Just as you say that some Catholic rituals are OK because they aren’t spoken of in Scripture, why would you say that Protestant belief of ‘sola scriptura’ is against Scripture?
BFHU: We do not say that Sola Scriptura is against Scripture. What I say over and over is that Protestants object to Catholic beliefs by saying, “Where is that in Scripture?” Protestants do this b/c they believe the doctrine of Sola Scriptura conceived of by Martin Luther 500 years ago.( But the Catholic Faith and beliefs have been around for 2000 years as evidenced by reading the Early Church Fathers.
But the problem with the Doctrine of Sola Scriptura is that it cannot be found in Scripture! So Protestants criticize Catholics for beliefs that cannot be found in Scripture and yet the very foundation of why they criticize Catholics, Sola Scriptura, is not in Scripture any more than the assumption or immaculate Conception of Mary!!!
JIML: Is it because Protestants do not follow human traditions, which are ambiguous? Is that why you think they are wrong?
BFHU: But that is the point. Protestants DO FOLLOW CATHOLIC TRADITION! The New Testament Canon is a Catholic TRADITION. The NT table of contents is not contained in scripture.
The Doctrine of the Trinity is Catholic Teaching that is not found explicitly in the NT. That is why Jehovahs Witnesses exist.
The word Trinity and Incarnation are NOT found in Scripture just like Purgatory is not found in Scripture.These are all Catholic Traditions.
JIML: Why is it wrong to stray from traditions and doctrines that do not have strong Biblical foundation?
BFHU: Because Jesus founded a Church 2000 years ago. Christianity evangelized the known world 1500 years until Protestantism was born, claiming to know better than the Church founded by Christ. Protestantism dropped by the wayside things that Christians had always and every where believed. Everything Jesus did and taught did not get written in the books of the NT. They are precious but there also existed along side the NT Oral teachings and explanations of Scripture that Protestantism lost touch with.
JIML:One more thing – how can we ever know if a human is right or wrong? How can we know if someone is telling the truth? I would love to hear your thoughts.
BFHU: Regarding what exactly? In general everyday stuff….beats me. Regarding Christianity….If what a teacher or Christian says aligns with the Cathechism I would accept it. But if it contradicts any teaching of the Church, and I mean CHURCH, not some whacko priest or catholic layman, then I reject it.