How to Test Authenticity of Sacred Tradition?


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MONISHA: How do you test the authenticity of the traditions (if they are not to be found in the Scriptures)?

BFHU: Were these doctrines believed by Christians always and everywhere? This is also partly how some books were eliminated from the canon…if they taught things not believed by Christians since the beginning.

“MONISHA: These doctrines were hammered out centuries before Martin Luther arrived on the scene by the Councils of the Catholic Church.”
Just because these doctrines were hammered out centuries before Martin Luther arrived on the scene isnt reason enough to accept them just as the doctrines that came about after him isnt reason enough to reject them!

BFHU: So, do you think doctrines can be created continuously? OK but I do not. I want to know what Christians, who were taught the pure gospel by Jesus himself taught Christians. I want to know what the earliest Christians believed and practiced. I do not trust a doctrine invented 1500 years after Christ. Sorry. You have the freedom to do so if you want to. I, however,  was searching for historic Christianity not a Christianity that was a mere 500 years old and relied on me being an infallible interpreter of Scripture. That was a heavy burden.

MONISHA: What is the basis of your claim to “It just so happened that Luther liked these doctrines and therefore adopted them even though they were not spelled out in Scripture alone.”?

BFHU: How else can you explain that Luther rejected some doctrine and accepted other doctrines, both of which, could not be found explicitly in scripture?

MONISHA: Why do you believe the doctrines of Trinity, the hypostatic union, etc. to be true even though they are not explicitly stated in Scripture, and at the same time refuse to believe the Sola Scriptura doctrine (even though reasonable verses point towards it)! And i think that is nothing less than hypocrisy.

BFHU: I believe these doctrines because they have been taught and believed by Christians since the first century of Christianity. I cannot prove scientifically that they are true. But historical evidence supports them as authentic and ancient. Just like I believe that George Washington was the first President of the US. I was not alive then. I cannot know this on my own. I have to rely on historical documentation. And it is also historical documentation that upholds Sacred Tradition of the Catholic Church. I trust it because it is closest to Jesus in time. But you are free to reject it.

And this brings us to the crux of the matter. You are trusting your interpretation of “reasonable verses” that point (do not command) to Sola Scriptura. Therefore you accept Scripture only and reject historic Christianity. This is a tradition of men.–>Protestant Tradition: Sola Scriptura

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What Evidence for Sacred Tradition and Infallibility of the Pope?


scrollsQ. What evidence do you have to support the traditions ? What document whatsoever in antiquity do you have to attest them?

A. There exist early Christian writings from the 1st-8th centuries. We call these the writings of the Fathers. They document the beliefs and practices of Christians at the dawn of Christianity. We do not consider them 100% inerrant but as historical documents they contain, in writing, what Christians believed. Here is a link to all of them.

–>CHURCH FATHERS

When I was trying to stay Protestant I decided that i would read Church Fathers of the first 3 centuries since the Bible was canonized at the beginning of the 5th century, and if I found that they were Protestant then I could stay Protestant. However,  I found them to be very Catholic. Therefore, I realized that Ancient Christianity was Catholic. The Church Jesus founded was Catholic, so I had to be Catholic. For specific Catholic doctrines you can start here under “Disputed Questions”

–>Catholic Answers

or look through tracts that address specific issues. Click under “Category”

–>Catholic Tracts

Q. please quote the scripture for “And the Pope is empowered by Christ to never teach anything to the church that is in error, thereby protecting us from false traditions of men.” i reject the traditions because they are not even remotely pointed to by the scriptures. Even Paul praised the Bereans for checking even what he said against scripture (Acts 17:11)

Peter & the KeysA. Regarding Scripture about the Pope and infallibility, of course there is nothing that explicit. However, that is how the doctrine of the infallibility of the Pope is defined by the Church. Papal infallibility.

You reject anything that is not found in scripture because that is what you have been taught to do. Searching the Scriptures IS to be praised and Catholic have studied and prayed the scriptures for 2000 years. But people can love and meditate and treasure Sacred Scripture while at the same time realize as St. John said, everything is not written down.

But there are also many other things which Jesus did; were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.

please see, : Infallible?

Where Did Peter Ever Claim to be the First Pope?

How Can a Sinner be Infallible?

Why is there a Pope?

Historical Evidence for Pope?

Popes and Bishops in the Early Church

Where are the Pope and Bishops is in Scripture?

Rock? Peter Rebuked! Priestshood. Papal Infallibility!

Pope Peter? That should get you started, if you are actually interested…..

Which is the Final Authority? Scripture or Tradition?


biblespine-coan-300x200MONISHA:  The Scriptures hold the place of final authority and by that position are shown to be superior to Sacred Tradition.

BFHU: You are very close to what we believe here. However, we would not state it quite this way. You say “Scripture is the final authority”. We would say “Nothing believed or taught by the Catholic Church may contradict Scripture”. The relevant difference is going to depend upon INTERPRETATION. Many Protestants think that they are able to infallibly interpret scripture, although they would never admit this. So, when based upon their perceived infallible interpretation, they find the Catholic Church teaching something that contradicts their interpretation they are convinced that the Catholic Church MUST be teaching heresy. When Protestants claim that Scripture is the final authority, what they are really saying is that their interpretation of Scripture is the final and infallible authority, but they would never claim the infallibility part.

As an example: The Catholic Church teaches the perpetual virginity of Mary. But Protestants will point out the scriptures about the “brothers and sisters of Jesus” and assert that the Catholic Church teaches something opposed to Sacred Scripture. They rarely explore with an educated Catholic how we can believe this doctrine in spite of the scriptures about the brothers of Jesus. They totally trust their own “infallible” interpretation.–>A Tradition of Men: Jesus had Siblings. Mary is NOT a Perpetual Virgin.

MONISHA: This means that Sacred Tradition is not equal in authority to the Word of Godpapacy

BFHU: This is a Protestant belief because they rarely understand what we mean by Sacred Tradition. Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scriptures are equal in authority in the Catholic Faith. That is because they both derived from the same exact source: The Teaching of the Apostles.

However, as you read this blog or other Catholic apologetics sources, we quote scripture in defending our faith, not because we think it is more authoritative. It is not. But, we are writing for our audience: Protestants. They believe Sacred Scripture is more authoritative or the only authority. Therefore, we quote Scripture as much as possible and appeal to Sacred Tradition as ancient historical support for our beliefs when necessary.

MONISHA:…to assert that Sacred Tradition is equal to Scripture effectively leaves the canon wide open to doctrinal addition. Since the traditions of men change, then to use tradition as a determiner of spiritual truth would mean that over time new doctrines that are not in the Bible would be added, and that is exactly what has happened in Catholicism with doctrines such as purgatory, praying to Mary, indulgences, etc.

BFHU: You are quite mistaken. As I said before Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture are merely the oral and written teachings of the Apostles as taught to them by Jesus Himself. Therefore they are equal in authority. Even St. Paul teaches this–>Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition Equal

As you said earlier, Christians believe such doctrines as the Trinity, Incarnation etc that cannot be found explicitly in Scripture alone. The Church teaches the doctrine of Purgatory, intercession of the Saints, indulgences etc as simply other things taught by the Apostles but not explicit is Scripture, the same as the Trinity, Incarnation etc..

The canon is very much CLOSED and nothing can now be added to it. New and novel doctrines cannot be added and have not been added. Let me be very clear about something often blurred in Protestant thinking. Sacred Tradition and the tradition of men are two VERY DIFFERENT things. Traditions of men may or may not be true but Sacred Tradition is True Apostolic Teaching. Traditions of men may be so wrong that they are condemned in Scripture and by the Catholic Church. But Sacred Tradition cannot change or be added to and it is never condemned but recommended by St. Paul.

MONISHA:Furthermore, if they can use Sacred Tradition as a source for doctrines not explicit in the Bible, then why would the Mormons then be wrong for having additional revelation as well?

BFHU: The Mormons are wrong because their additional revelation burst upon the scene less than 200 years ago. They have nothing to support that this new revelation came from the Apostolic Tradition or is attested by any document whatsoever in antiquity.

MONISHA:If the Bible is not used to verify and test Sacred Tradition, then Sacred Tradition is functionally independent of the Word of God. If it is independent of Scripture, then by what right does it have to exist as an authoritative spiritual source equivalent to the Bible? How do we know what is and is not true in Sacred Tradition if there is no inspired guide by which to judge it?

BFHU: Sacred Tradition is not at all functionally independent of the Word of God. The Oral Tradition/ Sacred Tradition is one part of Apostolic Teaching. Sacred Scripture/written Tradition is the other part of Apostolic Teaching. It has the right to exist because without it we lose the complete teachings of the Apostles.

Well, one could say that Sacred Tradition may not contradict anything in Sacred Scripture. And it does not. That is because they are both derived from the same God through the Apostles. And the Pope is empowered by Christ to never teach anything to the church that is in error, thereby protecting us from false traditions of men.

MONISHA:Sacred Tradition is invalidated automatically if it contradicts the Bible, and it does. Of course, the Catholic will say that it does not. But, Catholic teachings such as purgatory, penance, indulgences, praying to Mary, etc., are not in the Bible.

BFHU: Yes, Sacred Tradition would be invalidated if it contradicted Sacred Scripture. But it does not. It only contradicts Protestant Traditions and Protestant interpretation. Catholic teachings that are not found in the Bible do not, by their absence create a contradiction to the Bible. They are however found in Sacred Tradition just like the Doctrines of the Trinity, Incarnation, Hypostatic Union etc.

MONISHA:A natural reading of God’s Word does not lend itself to such beliefs and practices. Instead, the Catholic Church has used Sacred Tradition to add to God’s revealed word and then extracted out of the Bible whatever verses that might be construed to support their doctrines of Sacred Tradition.

BFHU: Quite the contrary, I am afraid. If you go back historically you will find all the unique Catholic beliefs in existence prior to the canonization of the Bible. What the Christian Church believed in the first centuries of Christianity is very Catholic. You will not find historic Christianity, prior to Martin Luther, to be anything remotely resembling Protestantism of any denomination.

We have always believed and taught the uniquely Catholic doctrines. They just happened to be found in Sacred Oral Apostolic Teaching rather than in the Written Apostolic Teachings. The Catholic Church did not use “Sacred Tradition to add to God’s revealed word and then extract out of the Bible whatever verses that might be construed to support their doctrines of Sacred Tradition.” It only appears this way to you b/c we try to use scripture as much as possible to show Protestants any possible scriptural support for Sacred Tradition b/c we know that you will reject anything that is not scripture. Protestant even reject historical affirmation of Catholic doctrine. So we do the best we can with what is in Scripture.

MONISHA:Since the Bible is the final authority, we should look to it as the final authenticating and inerrant source of all spiritual truth. If it says Sacred Tradition is valid–fine. But if it doesn’t, then I will trust the Bible alone. Since the Bible does not approve of the Catholic Church’s Sacred Tradition, along with its inventions of prayer to Mary, prayer to the saints, indulgences, penance, purgatory, etc., then neither should Christians.

BFHU: Where does the Bible disapprove of even one thing in Sacred Tradition? Or Catholic Teaching? And, are you fully aware that by rejecting Sacred ORAL Apostolic Teaching that you are left with only a fraction of what Jesus taught by trusting  Scripture alone?

Mt 28:18 “And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you

Jesus told the Apostles to teach all that He commanded. He did not say teach only what gets written down in the first 100 years of Christianity.–>Which Church Did Jesus Start?

Tradition of Men: Catholics worship Idols.


Bread From Heaven: On my post Where Does Scripture Say Mary Was Sinless? I made the oft repeated comment: “The Catholic Faith does not contradict anything in Scripture.” To this Erica replied:

Erica: How about IDOLATRY…?

Look at your Churches… There’s a lot of statues of Saints, Mary etc. that almost all of Catholics kneel upon it and even worship it like a God….

Go and continue worshiping your godly images and let’s see how far you will go…

“But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, IDOL WORSHIPERS, and all liars–their fate is in the FIERY LAKE OF BURNING SULFUR. This is the SECOND DEATH.”
Revelation 21:8

HAHAHAHA!!!

Bread From Heaven: I have many posts on this topic. Since I had just made a power point presentation to all of our confirmation students last Sunday I decided to make  my talk into one more post on this topic:

Does the Catholic Church worship Idols?

Protestants say we do. Where do they get  this idea?

TEN COMMANDMENTS
First Commandment

Exodus 20:You must not have any other god but me.You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them

Therefore, many Protestants criticize Catholics because we have pictures and statues in our Churches and our homes. Most Protestants never have these in their churches because they think they are idols. They take this very seriously.

“You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind…

Protestant are very sincere, BUT…are Protestants  right?
No, they are forgetting some very important Bible verses where God told Moses to place in the Temple in the very presence of God, the Holy of Holies:Unknown-3

2 ANGELS  of hammered gold …their wings spread upward..The angels are to face each other..-Ex. 25:18-20

 So, God Himself wanted a couple of images of “things in Heaven” in the Tabernacle

And did you know God told Solomon to decorate the Temple with images of things in Heaven and Earth?

600 Pomegranates, Lilies, Gourds, 12 Bulls, Lions, Angels, Palm Trees, and Golden Flowers

And it stood upon twelve oxen, of which three looked towards the north, and three towards the west, and three towards the south, and three towards the east, and the sea was above upon them, and their hinder parts were all hid within.–I Kings 7:18-46

And then we have the incident where the children of Israel were bitten by fiery serpents and …

Numbers 21:8 The LORD said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.”

Obviously, God  has not forbidden art because He commanded specific kinds of art to decorate the Temple and to save the Israelites from snakebites. He just didn’t want us to Worship these things

 “You must not bow down to them or worship them”

Why does the Catholic Church have Art in Churches? I can think of 5 reasons.

1. Pictures and statues are like family photos in our houses of worship only we have images of the Family of God.

Doesn’t every house have family pictures?

2. As an aid to prayer and to keep us focused.

3. To remind us of those who set an example of heroic Christian living.Unknown-2

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4. As reminders of Stories of Faith; to teach our children when a child asks, “Who is that?”

5. To tell the stories of our Faith to all the generations in the last 2000 years when Bibles were too expensive for individuals to own and most people could not read anyway. Did you know, even today 20% of the world population cannot read? But everyone can understand art.

But Protestants will say, “The Bible says: You must not bow down to them or worship them….”

Therefore, Protestants reason, since Catholics have images in their churches and they kneel or bow to them, Catholics worship images and commit idolatry!

So, Protestants think this kneeling is  Idolatry?

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So Protestant jump to the conclusion that the Pope is

worshipping the statue of Mary because he is praying and

kneeling by it. Why is this idolatry…..

 
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images-1

But not this–>

Why not jump to the conclusion he is worshipping bread?


<—or this. Why not jump to the conclusion

she is worshipping her bed?

 

 

 

 

or this–>images

Why not jump to the conclusion he is worshipping the Bible?

 

 

 

 

 

Is President Obama worshiping the  Emperor of Japan?

No! He was merely honoring him.

Why do Protestants think only Catholic kneeling is Idolatry?

Simple. Because their leaders have taught them that Catholics worship idols. Protestants trust their leaders and so when they visit a Catholic Church and see statues and pictures with people kneeling in front of them they jump to the conclusion that they are actually seeing modern day idolatry.

They do not question this judgement because they have been taught that this is true. They fail to recognize that they are unable to know the heart and mind of the kneeling person and therefore their judgement may, very well be, uncharitable. They don’t mean to be uncharitable…..But…..

They are simply WRONG!

We bow and kneel in order to honor Mary and the Saints. We do NOT worship them. The Catholic Church condemns the worship of anyone except God, the Holy Trinity!

There is nothing wrong with art in our Churches

Because God Himself commanded Moses to decorate the Jewish Temple with images of:

Things in Heaven–>Angels

and

Things on Earth–>Plants and Animals, plants, & fruit

The idea that all kneeling is, without question, Worship, is absurd.

If all kneeling =Worship then:
A Knight kneeling to a king is worshiping him.

A little girl kneeling by her bed is worshiping the bed…

A boy kneeling by a Bible and baseball glove is worshiping them.

When God said: You must not make …an image of any kind or …bow down …or worship them…

He did not mean all images are idols and all kneeling is worship.

He simply meant : Don’t worship anything or anyone but ME.

A Tradition of Men: Jesus had Siblings. Mary is NOT a Perpetual Virgin.


images-1

If you click on the image to the left and then make it larger you can read an explanation of the relationships of Jesus’ brothers.

Steve: never are His siblings referred to as anything else to lend credence to them being cousins, like “sister’s son” for example. Or, children from Joseph’s previous marriage, which has no standing in Scripture whatsoever. How is it possible to at the same time justify a belief in Joseph having a previous marriage without historical evidence, or even a single Bible verse to back it up? It is an indefensible argument.

BFHU:In the semitic languages there is no word for aunt, uncle, cousin etc b/c in the small communities in which language developed everyone knew what you meant when you called a particular person your brother or sister. They knew they were a sibling or other relative and they knew the relationship. To be precise they could certainly have used “sister’s son” but that is cumbersome and required more analysis than saying “brother” Please see this post–>Who Were the Brothers & Sisters of Jesus?
Brothers and Sisters of Jesus
The Protoevangelium of James
has Joseph being widowed and older; having children from a previous marriage.

This is one possibility: that the brothers and sisters were step-brothers and step-sisters. The other possibility is that the words brothers and sisters refer to kinsman rather than siblings. Just like it does elsewhere in Scripture.

Steve: Whereas, believing what the Bible says offers all of the knowledge and understanding we need on the subject.

BFHU: We believe what the Bible says but we interpret it differently based on historical information from the ancient Church and history.Protestants pretty much ignore Christian History after the Book of Acts until the Protestant Reformation era.

Steve:  This dogma has done nothing more than cause countless people to worship Mary

BFHU: We do not worship Mary. Adam and Eve were also created immaculate. Sinlessness does not equal deity.

Steve: Claiming it as a “tradition” is not proof, and it does not lend historical evidence.

BFHU: When we talk about tradition we can mean two things. First of all there is what we call TRADITION which is not folksy or something that evolved over time to be a practice of the Catholic Faith. When we talk about Scripture and TRADITION with a capital “T” for instance, we mean nothing less than the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES.

Scripture is the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES and

Tradition is the TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES.

That is why we hold both of them sacred. We have other traditions of our Faith that are not Apostolic teaching. The Immaculate Conception and Perpetual Virginity of Mary are TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES or what we call, for short, TRADITION. The Traditions that are also TEACHINGS OF THE APOSTLES are also called DOGMA. So if you come across a tradition that is not a dogma, it is NOT Apostolic teaching but tradition with a lower case “t”.

Steve: I won’t bother quoting Scripture from Exodus 20 about idols and bowing before them.

BFHU: Regarding the worship of idols please see this post—>Protestant Tradition of Men: Catholics worship Idols.
Regarding Mary Co-Redemptrix

Steve:  Many Catholics wish to see her raised to the status of co-redeemer. As if to say, “the job was just too much for Jesus alone, Mary had to have helped him.”

BFHU: First, we are not “raising” her  status. She already is a cooperator or coredemptrix. There is simply debate about whether to officially give her this title. Secondly, are you aware that Muslims vehemently reject that God begot a son because that would mean He needed help and it takes away from the sovereignty and power of Allah!

We both believe no such thing about Jesus, Son of God. And Catholics believe no such thing about Mary being  needed by Jesus. He certainly did NOT need  Mary. But, throughout Biblical history God has chosen to accomplish His purposes through faithful men and women. God could have just zapped a Man-God baby or man to earth and carried on from there but He chose to be incarnate with the help and seed of Mary. I don’t pretend to know why God insists on having people help Him. But it is undeniable that He has people help Him throughout history.

 Steve: But it seems strange to me, that we should both claim the Bible as our base for a foundation,

BFHU: Yes. And this is true of all the Protestant denominations as well. Despite using the same Bible, people interpret scriptures differently when their faith is unhinged from 1500 years of Christian history. The Catholic Faith however, is the Church founded by Jesus Christ Himself and has existed continuously for nearly 2000 years.

Steve:  …..yet one of these beliefs has no grounds to stand on in the Bible to even begin to prove it.

BFHU: Neither view of the “brothers of Jesus” can be proved from Scripture alone. We must therefore, look to historical evidence to settle the question.

Steve: Nor Biblical wording to account for such behavior and thinking.

BFHU: And yet, nothing we believe contradicts Scripture. It only contradicts Protestant interpretations, which is not the same thing.

Who Is the Final Authority for Protestants? Themselves?


Let unity, the greatest good of all goods, be your preoccupation.” – St. Ignatius of Antioch (Letter to St. Polycarp)

This is a reblog from Principium Unitatis.

MONDAY, JULY 14, 2008
Michael Brown on “Sola Scriptura or Scriptura Solo”
I recently read Michael Brown’s “Sola Scriptura or Scriptura Solo”. What I say below is a reply to his post. (On a related note, my post on Keith Mathison’s The Shape of Sola Scriptura can be found here.)

Michael claims that the sola scriptura position is not “me-and-my-own-interpretation-is-authoritative”. He claims that sola scriptura advocates read and interpret the Bible “with the church”. Sola scriptura advocates, he claims, are not biblicists. Their position, according to Michael, is not solo scriptura.

But when you ask sola scriptura advocates what exactly they are referring to by ‘church’, they will eventually answer with something semantically equivalent to “whoever reads and interprets the Bible just like I do, or at least pretty close to just like I do”. And if you ask them, “Which creeds, confessions and historical theology are authoritative?”, their ultimate answer is semantically equivalent to “those creeds and confessions and historical theology that agree with me-and-my-own-interpretation-of-Scripture.” Some will answer this latter question by claiming that they follow those creeds and confessions and historical theology that were put forward by “the church”. But, again, when you ask them what exactly they are referring to by ‘church’, you find eventually that their ultimate answer is semantically equivalent to “whoever reads and interprets the Bible just like I do, or at least pretty close to just like I do.” Sometimes sola scriptura advocates appeal to Protestant confessions like the Westminster Confession or the Belgic Confession. But if you ask them why they believe those confessions to be authoritative, and not, say, the Council of Trent, you will eventually find an answer semantically equivalent to “because those confessions [or those who wrote them] interpret the Bible just like I do, or at least pretty close to just like I do.” This is what I have previously called “painting a magisterial target around one’s interpretive arrow”, like shooting an arrow into a wall, and then painting a target around one’s arrow to make it look as if one shot a bullseye.

Advocates of sola scriptura distinguish their position from that of biblicists by claiming that biblicists practice solo scripture. And I imagine that most self-described advocates of sola scriptura are not biblicists in the I-only-use-Scripture sense. But this distinction [between sola scriptura and biblicism/solo scripture] is not relevant to the fundamental authority problem of solo scriptura. That is because for both sola scriptura and solo scriptura/biblicism, the individual remains the final interpretive [of both Scripture and Tradition] authority.

This is more difficult for advocates of sola scriptura to see about themselves, because by claiming that the Church is the final authority [where ‘Church’ is defined as “whoever reads and interprets the Bible just like I do, or at least pretty close to just like I do”] they create a semantic and social layer between themselves and their treatment of themselves as their own ultimate interpretive authority.

According to Michael, biblicism, but not sola scriptura, encourages people not to “subject themselves to any theological or ecclesiastical authority that might be contrary to their own interpretation.” But if you ask sola scriptura proponents to whom they themselves subject their interpretations, you will soon discover that the answer is “those who interpret Scripture mostly or entirely like I do.” So in this respect, there is no principled difference between sola scriptura and biblicism.

You can read the rest of this post –> Principium Unitatis

Why Do Protestants Feel Superior to Catholics?


 

This is an exchange from an ongoing conversation on:

My Conversion to the Catholic Church

in which Charles contends that daily scripture reading is commanded for salvation.

CHARLES:Martin Luther did not need new revelations to realise scripture is essential – it was already there in the bible. We should be ‘ obsessed”
by scripture in order to live our lives by it.

BREAD FROM HEAVEN: Martin Luther had NO AUTHORITY to change the Christian faith and add doctrines never before believed in the history of Christianity. He didn’t need to do that in order to realize the benefit of scripture. St. Jerome said in the 400′s AD:

“To be ignorant of scripture is to be ignorant of Christ.”

It is a Protestant myth that the Catholic Church does not value Scripture. And herein lies the difference and the danger of Luther’s doctrine as it affects Protestants. We should not be obsessed with scripture but with Christ, a pursuit of holiness, and evangelization. This is what our Catholic Faith teaches us.

The fact that many Catholics don’t practice this only proves many Catholics don’t practice our Faith. Protestants have a false sense of superiority over the Catholic Church because they leave a church they perceive as “dead” or less than perfect or when they disagree with the pastor or find the pastor in sin, or the music is not to their taste etc. Some even start a new church. These Protestants are very fervent and truly desire to serve Our Lord. And each time they leave for a holier Church or a more scripture based teaching church or a church with more uplifing music they feel their new church is truly following Christ better than the church they left. Until, perhaps as time goes by something makes them see faults and they leave again. This gives them a false sense being in a better church than the Catholic Church in which all Catholics find a home both fervent and less fervent, both saints and sinners and everything in between. This makes it VERY easy to find fault with the Catholic Church as Protestant focus on the less fervent and more worldly Catholics and compare them to their own fervent new church. A proper comparison would encompass all the exemplary holy Saints inspired by our One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. But as G.K. Chesterton said:

“It is impossible to be just to the Catholic Church. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it. But when that affection has passed a certain point it begins to take on the tragic and menacing grandeur of a great love affair.”
-G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936)