Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Sola Scriptura merry-go-round. How's that working for you?

Dr. Phil McGraw uses that line when people vehemently defend their selfish behavior out of foolish pride. "How is that working for you?" The question is brilliant in it's simplicity and ability to cut to the quick.

Doctor Phil's argument is but one way the doctrine of Sola Scriptura can be debated.

The doctrine of Sola Scriptura can be disputed any number of ways.

It can be disputed-ironically enough- Scripturally. Nowhere, in the Old or New Testaments are we told that truth is based on Scripture alone. In fact, we are told the opposite.

John 5:39 You search the scriptures, because you think you have eternal life through them; even they testify on my behalf

2THES 2:15 Therefore, brothers, stand firm and hold fast to the traditions that you were taught, either by an oral statement or by a letter of ours.

It can be disputed logically.

You cannot make the case that the Scriptures are God's word solely based on an appeal to the Scriptures. Such an argument is nonsensical and circular. You cannot have an argument where the conclusion is in the premise. Proponents of Sola Scriptura do that all the time and they wind up making Christendom look like a kingdom of fools.

How can I know that the Bible is God's Word?
Because God's Word says so.
How do you know it's God's Word?
Because it says so in God's Word.

To fail to see the total lack of sound logic in that type of argument is to be blind.

How can I know that you are Santa Claus?
Because I said so.
How is that of any value?
Becaue I am Santa Claus!

Some Fundamentalists try to get around that by appealing to Jeremiah to support Matthew and Matthew to support Paul and Paul to support Luke etc... Thus, they are now affirming that Jeremiah and Romans and Luke are, in fact, seperate and distinct testimonies by different authors, writing in different times and different places.

That is a much more sound argument for a believer, to be sure.... but for an unbeliever, it is still found wanting.


Look.... You are presenting The Bible to me, as a singular volume. First, I must trust, as an article of faith, that each of these books was written originally by the author you state. You cannot provide the original manuscripts for these books so we cannot know for certain where they came from.

However, even if I conceeded the authorship of these books, I have no way of knowing that everything these books say is true and that God is the ultimate author of any of it unless there is some other kind of evidence that verifies it!

The Atheist has a point. He has made a very sound, logical and cogent argument.

Of course, the Fundamentalist (We will call him Matt ) will then start lecturing the Atheist about how he is going to hell because he is evil etc... At this point, the Atheist- predictably- will yawn and walk away and Matt-as is always the case- will have converted no one.

When debating someone- for the purpose of evangelism-, your arguments must be sound and credible and you must be willing to concede a strong argument from the other side, if you expect to gain their trust.

Therefore, one cannot evangelize a non-believer on the basis of Sola Scriptura and expect a positive result.

The doctrine of Sola Sciptura can be disputed historically.

Prior to Luther and the - so-called - reformers, there is zero historical evidence that any Christian Church anywhere, at any time, believed this doctrine. That is a pretty curious fact for a doctrine that is supposedly foundational to be absent from practice for the first 1500 years of the Church!

However, the most unassailable proof that Sola Scriptura is Sola Balogna is the Dr. Phil test.

"How's that working for you?"

There are 30,000 protestant denominations now that can't agree on the color of dirt! In fact, I dare say that the only doctrine that Protestants agree on today is Sola Scriptura.

On the basis of their agreement on the Bible alone, protestantism is divided on the issue of Salvation by faith alone. It is divided on the necessity of Baptism. It is divided on Rapture theology. It is divided on the Real Prescence. It is divided on the use of wine as a sacramental. It is divided on what a church hierarchy should look like. It is divided on the Trinity. It is divided on the Ressurection. It is divided on homosexuality. It is divided on abortion. It is divided on the prophetic nature of Israel. It is divided on the idea of a ministerial priesthood. It is divided on the necessity of the tithe in today's world. It is divided on whether or not Catholics are Christians. It is divided on works. It is divided on Hell. It is divided on creationism. and on and on and on.

Jesus said A house divided against itself cannot stand. Matthew 12:25.

Sola Scriptura Protestants! How is that working for you? Why not take another look at a house united? Every Roman Catholic that is in full communion believes the same thing. That is one of the Essential marks of the true church. Ephesians 4:5

Friday, April 17, 2009

*BEST OF DTB #2* Dry water and cold fire. Do Catholics believe we can earn Salvation?

In a word, no.

In fact, those who claim we do think that are making a wholly disingenuous argument based on false dilemma.

That false dilemna is that salvation is either by faith alone or by works alone.

Let's start with that with which all protestants and catholics agree.

1) Man is fallen.

2) Man cannot save himself.

3) Man needs a Savior.

4) Jesus is the only one qualified for the job.

Some Fundamentalists act as if Catholics don't understand who Salvation comes from. Ironic, since they also condemn us for the fact that we supposedly spend to much time commemorating the Crucifixion- the defining act making salvation available to us. True, the Resurrection completes it and codifies it but the Resurrection is of little value to us without the Crucifixion.

Nevertheless, all Christians agree that the availability of Salvation is manifested, to the world, through the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus. The price has been paid and the money put in the bank account. We call this part of the process Redemption.

Redemption is available to every person on earth. That is, there are sufficient funds in the bank to cover the salvation of every person.

Hebrews 9:12 he entered once for all into the sanctuary, not with the blood of goats and calves but with his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.

Yet,Catholics agree with the Apostles Paul & Peter that we must, in fact, fill up what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ

COL 1:24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church,

1PT 4:13 But rejoice to the extent that you share in the sufferings of Christ, so that when his glory is revealed you may also rejoice exultantly.
Are Paul and Peter suggesting insufficiency in the Sanctifying power of Christ's blood? Not at all.
What they are saying is that it is not enough that Christ died for us, if we do not have faith enough to benefit from it by joining in His sacrifice.

When fundamentalists claim that Catholics believe in a weak Jesus whose blood is insufficient to forgive every sin, they are are simply whistling past the grave yard. In fact, that is actually a pretty ridiculous argument. For, if I believed that Christ is not strong enough to save me, by what means could I possibly believe that I could do it?

Yet, there are actually people who have the audacity to suggest that we Catholics think we can out save Jesus because His sacrifice just wasn't good enough. Um. We don't. The sufficiency of Christ's sacrifice to save every single man, woman and child on earth is affirmed by our assent to the doctrine of Redemption. This argument, that we believe in a weak Jesus, is a red herring created by clever liars to detract from what is the real question at hand.

The question of what Jesus is able to do is one on which all Christians can agree. Jesus can do anything with only two exceptions;

1) Sin
2) Contradict Himself, the Father or the Spirit.

The question of Salvation boils down to three essential other questions

1) What is Jesus required to do for us beyond that which He has already done?
2) What is Jesus willing to do for us beyond that which He has already done?
3) What, as a consequence, would be required of us?

The answer to the first question is emphatic. Jesus owes me nothing. If I lived a hundred thousand lifetimes, each a hundred thousand years long, I could not even hope to repay him for what he has already done for me. The very suggestion that I could, then, pay my way in to heaven is too absurd to even discuss. All the gold of all the world of all time wouldn't suffice as a down payment on the reparations of the wounds of even 1 mortal sin I have committed in my life. However, my indebtedness only amplifies the imperitive that I give Him all I can.

On question #2, Jesus has made clear to us that He is willing to make provision for sufficient funds, from the bank of redemption, to be made available to pay off our debt. This is where the first disagreement arises. Catholics would agree with all Protestants that this debt payment is not earned from us or deserved by us. We are totally dependent on the debt payer who earned the wages himself and is under no obligation to make them available to us.

The money that is used to settle this debt is called Grace. In fact, Catholics call this particular type of Grace- Sanctifying Grace because that's what it does.

ACTS 15:11 On the contrary, we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they

ROM 3:24 They are justified freely by his grace through the redemption in Christ Jesus,

ROM 5:2 through whom we have gained access (by faith) to this grace in which we stand, and we boast in hope of the glory of God.

ROM 5:17 For if, by the transgression of one person, death came to reign through that one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of justification come to reign in life through the one person Jesus Christ.

Where we divert is that some protestants (Calvinists in particular), believe that the debt payer, rather than providing for the payment of our debt, assumes all our debts (past, present and future) as His own! This is the heretical doctrine of Salvation by imputation. Like any other false, man-made doctrine, Salvation by imputation is not without clever arguments supporting it based on Scriptures twisted and turned just the right way. Just so, it fails to withstand serious muster, as do all heresies.

Following imputation theology through to it's logical end shows that it is completely untenable in a number of respects. Let's examine one.

Imputation theology fails to deal with sin. Thus, it makes it Biblically heretical. All the way back to Cain, God tells us of the struggle against sin.

Genesis 4:7

If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it."

All through out the Scriptures, in both the Old and New Testament, Sin is shown in terms of an obstacle you must overcome. God will help you. He will forgive your sin and help you to grow stronger against it, if you are willing to try, but He will not paint over your sin and pretend it isn't there. He will not fail to punish you if you do not fight your sin.

PHIL 2:12 So then, my beloved, obedient as you have always been, not only when I am present but all the more now when I am absent, work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

Matthew 10:38 and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me.

Luke 3:9 Even now the ax lies at the root of the trees. Therefore every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire."

Matthew 5:20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

Galatians 6

6:7 Make no mistake: God is not mocked, for a person will reap only what he sows,6:8 because the one who sows for his flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows for the spirit will reap eternal life from the spirit.6:9 Let us not grow tired of doing good, for in due time we shall reap our harvest, if we do not give up.

James 2:24 You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone.

Imputation theology mocks God's justice by putting God in a position of no longer punishing your sins or forgiving them. He simply pretends they are not there.

1 Thessalonians 4:6 and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you.

Three things must be made crystal clear.
1) Sin cannot stand. God will not abide sin. Every single sin must be forgiven or punished.
2) Forgiveness of sin is impossible without sincere repentance. Repentance means to
turn away. You cannot be forgiven of your sins unless you forsake them!
3) To sin, with the expectation that your sins will be forgiven or-worse yet- that they have already have been forgiven, is to only add the sin of presumption to your previous sins.

As the Apostle Paul admonishes us; Be not deceived. God is not mocked.

So, imputation, as a theory is wrong and this creates the great quandary that is very much the division between many branches of Protestantism and the one faith of Catholicism. It is set up by false dilemmas that are at the very heart of question #3

What does the free gift of Salvation require of us?

Many protestants contend that it requires nothing of us for two reasons;
1) It cannot be a free gift if anything is required in return.
2) There cannot be anything required of us because the debt is too large and we cannot pay it.

Therefore, God must pay it in full for us or it cannot be paid.

Let's tackle the first one.

Romans 4

1What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather, discovered in this matter? 2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness." a

4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousnessb. 6David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from worksc: 7"Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. 8Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him."

a This is a perfect example of how context provides the answer. I actually like it when fundamentalists cite this scripture because it ends up proving the Catholic case! What does it mean "Abraham believed God?" Does it mean he jumped up and said "I believe, I believe!" Does it mean he danced in the isles and sang songs about how much faith he had? No, it means that Abraham trusted in God even when it did not seem to make earthy sense to do so.
The fundamentalists contention, that all Abraham had to do was state his belief, only works to persuade those who are completely ignorant of Scripture. We can see, plainly, from scripture that just the opposite is true. Abraham was saved because of His faith but that faith could only be manifested- proven- by his works. His works saved him.
James 2
2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar?2:22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by the works.2:23 Thus the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness," and he was called "the friend of God."2:24 See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
Is James refuting Paul? No! James is explaining Paul's position. Whereas Redemption is that money in the bank that Jesus deposited to pay the debt, Justification is the point at which the person's debt is paid in full. That is, the person has become Justified before God.
b Imputational fundamentalists insist that man can never become justified before God. They insist that Jesus covers our unrighteousness with His righteousness the way a blood stain is covered by a coat of paint. In essence, the consequence of their theology is that your sin still exists but you get into heaven by hiding behind Jesus so God cannot see it.
Yet, in the very verse cited, we are told that man can be justified.
"man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked"
There are more examples;
Luke 18:14 I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted."
ACTS 13:39 in him every believer is justified.
Romans 2:13 For it is not those who hear the law who are just in the sight of God; rather, those who observe the law will be justified.
Romans 5:9 How much more then, since we are now justified by his blood, will we be saved through him from the wrath.
James 2:25 And in the same way, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she welcomed the messengers and sent them out by a different route?
Before we can debate how a man is justified, we must, at a minimum, believe that he is. Imputation theology is finished. It is simply unworkable as an explanation of salvation. Any honest rendering of scripture contends that man- himself- undergoes a change from spiritual death to life, justifying him in the site of God. In other words, mans sin is not simply covered, it is removed.
Romans 6:4

We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
Ephesians 2:1
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins,
Ephesians 2:5
made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
Colossians 2:13

When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins,

Many protestants correctly reject the doctrine of imputation and accept that God's Grace does in fact wash away our sins and make us holy enough to be Justified. This actual cleansing of the soul and removal of sin is what is called Sanctification.
Redemption provides the money, Sanctification is the payment(s) and Justification is the result. All of it comes from the beneficence of a Holy and indescribably merciful God.
Yet, let's not forget that He is also a Just God and a Sovereign God. For man to be Justified, Justice must be satisfied. Justification literally means the satisfaction of Justice. The abscence of debt or guilt.
 /ˈdʒʌstəˌfaɪ/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [juhs-tuh-fahy] Show IPA verb, -fied, -fy⋅ing.
–verb (used with object)
1. to show (an act, claim, statement, etc.) to be just or right: The end does not always justify the means.
2. to defend or uphold as warranted or well-grounded: Don't try to justify his rudeness.
3. Theology. to declare innocent or guiltless; absolve; acquit.4.Printing.
a. to make (a line of type) a desired length by spacing the words and letters, esp. so that full lines in a column have even margins both on the left and on the right.
b. to level and square (a strike).
Protestants who reject imputationalism and Catholics, agree that man is redeemed by Christ's sacrifice, Sanctified by His Grace and Justified by that Sanctification. Further, we agree that this occurs only because of faith and not by the merit of man nor by the works of the law. The only things in question are how the process takes place and what man must do for it to happen.
People of good will have been confused on this question for 500 years because the disobedience of Luther and the other reformers sowed that confusion. The reformers argued that Redemption, Sanctification and Jusification all occur at once and they provide Scripture that the uninformed could misinterpret to support that contention.
Romans 3:24
and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:30
And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
Many protestants who are not imputationalists, nevertheless, reject the idea that man is able to do anything to contribute to his own salvation. They cite, for example, the same words of Paul from above.
b 4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness c 6David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works: 7"Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. 8Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him."
In reading this, It would be easy to misunderstand Paul as saying that our Justification before God has nothing to do with works- that it was by faith alone. Easy that is, if James did not directly contradict that notion.
James 2
8If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right. 9But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. 10For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.
12Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom,

13because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment!
14What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him?
15Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food.
16If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?
17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.18But someone will say, "You have faith; I have deeds." Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do.

19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.
20You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?

21Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,"
and he was called God's friend. 24You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone.

Is James contradicting Paul? No! He is explaining the very same doctrine that Paul taught. There are two sides to it and Paul emphasized the first, while James emphasized the second.
1) Those who carried out the works of the Mosaic law (John 1:17), without faith, cannot be saved. The works of the law, under the Old Covenant were nothing less than a symbolic participation in Christ's redemptive work. When people practiced the law, for it's own sake, they were condemned. Not one person can be saved by the law.
Paul is exorting us that Jesus is the one who saves even those who were saved through the Mosaic law because they were not saved by the Mosaic law. In fact, not one single person was saved BY the Mosaic law. All were saved by Jesus.

Acts 13:39 Through him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses.
Salvation passed from and through Jesus, through the Mosaic law, to the believer. The Mosaic law was but a conduit through time by which Old Testament believers could participate in New Testament salvation. When Jesus arrived, that conduit was no longer needed and the veil in the temple was torn in two, shortly before the temple itself was razed by the Romans.
2) James, on the other hand, is giving us the other side of the equation. The law of Moses is one thing, the law of God is another! Do not presume that the law of God will ever pass away.
Matthew 5:18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.
The same Scriptures that tell us that works without faith are dead tell us that faith without works is dead. The same scriptures that tell us that faith operates apart from works, tell us that faith is completed through works. You must demonstrate both or you, in fact, have neither.
We are not under the (Mosaic) law, we are under grace. Grace cleanses us, strengthens us, waters us and enables us to bring forth good fruit. Earning salvation? Don't be silly. Our works don't earn us salvation any more than the works of the Mosaic law earned Salvation.
Nevertheless, works are required for salvation. For the God who said "Thou shalt not kill" etc...'', meant it.
So, then. The question from some fundamentalists becomes ''how much work?'', ''what work?'', as if we can quantify it. If one attempts to quantify the work, they focus on the work for it's own sake and error just as the Pharisees did.
Ours is to do what we are told to do and leave the results to God. The results are not what save but the exercise of faith practiced. The exercise of works is not a contradiction of faith but the very manifestation of faith. Some protestants contend that good works are a by product of faith. Seperating works from faith is like seperating the water from the wet or the heat from the fire. You can have wet without water but you cannot have water without wet. You can have heat without fire but you cannot have fire without heat. Salvation is by faith. We do what we are told to prove we have faith.
You can say you have faith all you want but if your soul is dry and cold, your words don't mean much.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Practical Catholics, Non-Catholics and Anti-Catholics and wolves.

A left-wing group, calling themselves Catholics United, are running spots in major markets on Christian radio. Though they claim to be a non-partisan group, supporting the Catholic Social doctrine, they are anything but.

Catholics United is a front group for the radical, secularist left. They exclusively support left-wing, pro-abortion, pro-homosexual, pro-socialist Democrats.

This group is, in no way, affiliated with the Catholic Church and forwards a message that is counter to what the Church actually teaches.

As yet another example of wolves in sheep's clothing, this group has motivated me that perhaps now is the time to specifically define the different groups, about which I will often discuss on this blog, and how they relate to what is and is not Catholicism.

First, let's start with a definition and exposition of the term Catholic.

It can be traced back to at least 110 AD (less than 80 years from Christ's death), and a statement by Ignatious of Antioch, that "where Christ is, there is His Catholic Church".

This statement (which precedes the Bible by about 2-3/4 centuries) not only codifies the use of the term Catholic, but the claim that it represents- that Christ is found in, and acts through, the one Catholic Church.

No other Christian apology can come within 200 years of being traced back this far and very few that survive today, can come closer than 1400-1500 years of such a point. That is a historical fact that cannot be credibly disputed.

The word Catholic means Universal and it is a Biblical necessity for the mission of Christ's church that it be preached universally- that is, everywhere-

Matthew 24:14
And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the world as a witness to all nations, and then the end will come.

So, in it's broadest definition, all baptized Christians are members- admit it or not- of the Catholic Church. It is the belief of the Catholic church that the other Christian churches actually do not even truly exist, in God's eyes, but it's members are, in fact, Catholics who are not in full communion with the Catholic (universal) Church.

Understanding this is essential to understand the Catholic doctrine of Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus (Outside the church, there is no salvation). It is certainly true that Catholics- myself included- believe that Jesus created only one Church, that that Church He created with authority, power and the infallible protection of the Holy Spirit, is the Roman Catholic Church, headed by the Pope and the Vatican. However, we do not believe that the very possibility of salvation is restricted only to people who have, as a matter of knowledge, come into a full and complete communion with the Catholic Church.

We do believe that those who do know, or through their own efforts could know, the full truths of Catholicism, will be held accountable for that knowledge. This revealed truth can be found in the parable of the talents;

Matthew 25

14"Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. 17So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.
19"After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'
21"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'
22"The man with the two talents also came. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.'
23"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'
24"Then the man who had received the one talent came. 'Master,' he said, 'I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'
26"His master replied, 'You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
28" 'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

This citation clearly establishes that Salvation is a process and that we are required to actually produce something (thus refuting the doctrine of Sola Scriptura). Further, it refutes the nonsensical argument that each person will be measured against the same standard of absolute perfection. This is one of many of the purely unscriptural claims of many protestants.

Each person will be measured by his own ability. It is no coincidence that the term 'talent', once used as a weight or coin, is now used to describe ability.

What many fundamentalists don't understand is that for God to require more from you, or less, than your ability-or your potential- provides for, would be a violation of His perfect justice.

Therefore, there is a very clear distinction between the judgement of those who fail to meet a standard because they are unaware of the standard (through invincible ignorance) and those who fail to meet it by willfull disobedience. Therefore, the person who has only 1 talent is not held to the standard as the man who has 10.

This again, refutes Sola Fide because of the expectation of results. There cannot be an expectation of a result without a consequence for not meeting that result. As you can see, the consequence is clear;

28" 'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

A person who does not know this truth, and could not be reasonably expected to be able to know it, could still be saved in theory, provided that, motivated by virtue, he still seeks to please God to the extent of His ability.

On the other hand, let me warn you that whoever reads this passage and can know this (or any other truth of faith) as truth, but out of stubborness refuses to accept that truth, and holds fast to the lie, is accountable to it.

This distinction sharply seperates the non-Catholic from the anti-Catholic.

The Catholic (10 talents) who is capable of being in full communion has the greatest opportunity for Salvation of any person on earth because He has the greatest graces available to him. On the other hand, because he has the greatest understanding, he has the greatest opportunity for disobedience and, thus, among believers, the greatest danger to be damned, if he chooses to reject God's mercy.

The non-Catholic (5 talents) is he, who through his best efforts to know and serve God, falls short of full communion. Did his efforts match his potential. Did he learn all he reasonably could and did he live in obedience to God, to the extent his ability allowed?

The non-Christian (1 talent).

Of course, our fundamentalist friends tell us that the non-Christian cannot be saved nowhere, no way, no how. Not so fast. How were Abraham, Issac and Jacob saved? We can read in the New Testament that they were already in heaven when Jesus walked the earth.

Matthew 22:32 'I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'? He is not the God of the dead but of the living."

None of the three had the earthly opportunity to fully come to the knowledge of, and acceptance of Jesus Christ. They knew and understood God only to the extent that He had been revealed to them. Therefore, they were only judged according to that standard.

This again, refutes the silly notion that only by a verbal assent of faith in Jesus is it even possible for anyone to be saved. Certainly, this is the standard for anyone who knows who Jesus is or, through their own efforts, could know.

So, a dying baby can't be saved?

This kind of pharaseical nonsense nulifies the mercy of God. For the mercy and justice of God demands that a person who has never had the opportunity to know God but lives the best life he can according to the law within him, has to be considered- at least theoretically- within the realm of possibility of salvation.

Protestants will argue that only by faith in Christ can one live a life pleasing to God. Once again. they are mistaken.


10:25 * There was a scholar of the law* who stood up to test him and said, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"10:26 Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law? How do you read it?"10:27 He said in reply, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself."10:28 He replied to him, "You have answered correctly; do this and you will live."

The Parable of the Good Samaritan.10:29 But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"10:30 Jesus replied, "A man fell victim to robbers as he went down from Jerusalem to Jericho. They stripped and beat him and went off leaving him half-dead.10:31 * A priest happened to be going down that road, but when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.10:32 Likewise a Levite came to the place, and when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.10:33 But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him was moved with compassion at the sight.10:34 He approached the victim, poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them. Then he lifted him up on his own animal, took him to an inn and cared for him.10:35 The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction, 'Take care of him. If you spend more than what I have given you, I shall repay you on my way back.'10:36 Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers' victim?"10:37 He answered, "The one who treated him with mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."

When I read scriptures such as this, I am stunned and amazed by those with the temerity to say that Salvation requires nothing from us. Many of our protestant brothers insist that the righteous man who does not know Jesus is guaranteed to be damned while the unrighteous who do know him are saved.

As you can see here, in these scriptures, the exact reverse is the case.

The righteous will attain eternal life while the unrighteous will be damned.

Matthew 13:49 Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous

To truly bring this home, let's look at just what a Samaritan was.

I gleaned this from a protestant Bible history website;

Because of their defective devotion to Judaism and their partly pagan ancestry, the Samaritans were despised by ordinary Jews. Because the Samaritans were sometimes hostile, and also the fact that a Jew believed that he could become contaminated by passing through Samaritan territory, Jews who were traveling from Judea to Galilee or vice versa would cross over the Jordan river and avoid Samaria by going through Transjordan, and cross back over the river again once they had reached their destination.

How, then, could these reviled and despised unbelievers ever hope to be saved? Jesus, Himself, tells us that it is possible. Possible does not mean likely. It only means that we cannot afford to exclude anyone from the economy of salvation who is living the best life they can.

Romans 9:15 For he says to Moses: "I will show mercy to whom I will, I will take pity on whom I will."

But some will quote

ACTS 4:12 There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved."

Yet, all that is is a reitteration of the above quote. Salvation is the exclusive right of God. Nobody else can save you. Jesus Christ is the only person who can do it.

Many Protestants affirm this truth on the one hand but deny it on the other. For, in assenting to Christ as the sole provider of your salvation, they deny the very means by which He said He would provide it in Matthew 19 & 25, Luke 10 and a hundred other places!

How about Paul's letter to the Romans, which fundamentalists cite as refuting the necessity of works?

Romans 2

2:5 By your stubbornness and impenitent heart, you are storing up wrath for yourself for the day of wrath and revelation of the just judgment of God,2:6 who will repay everyone according to his works:* 2:7 eternal life to those who seek glory, honor, and immortality through perseverance in good works,2:8 but wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness.

You will be judged by what you do! NOT just by what you SAY.

Why the 1 talent for one person, 5 for another, 10 for another?

Simply put, if all other factors are equal, the person with 10 talents is 10 times as likely to reach heaven. He is twice as likely to reach heaven as the man with 5.

All things being equal that is.

Neverthelss, Judas was a hand picked disciple of Jesus and Mary Magdalene a former 7 demon possessed harlot. Yet Judas is in hell and Mary is in heaven because of who they ended up choosing to follow with their deeds, not merely their words.

Even as he betrayed Jesus, Judas kissed him and said "hail, Rabbi". Jesus wasn't fooled.

Again, I am certainly not arguing that it is likely that a non-Christian can be saved, only that God's mercy and Justice demands we allow for it to be possible.

The Anti-Catholic/Anti-Christian (0 talents)

A person with such a vexed hatred of Catholicism, or the larger faith of Christianity, that it will cause him to lie- about the scriptures, history, truths of religion etc...- is a person who cannot be saved unless he repents. Such a one is not unable to see the truth but un-willing. He will die in his willful blindness and be condemned to hell.

The reason is because he has given himself over to his hatred and violated the second greatest commandment to love thy neighbor.

It is one thing to misunderstand. It is another to disagree. It is something altogether different to revile and hate. Misunderstandings and disagreements may be overcome by dialogue. Hate cannot be overcome unless the person who practices it relinquishes it.

Anti-Catholics and Anti-Christians routinely bear false witness by making claims that they either know are false or make no effort to substantiate because of fear they will be proven untrue and can't be used as ammunition.

Of course, Such a lack of charity springs from a deceitful and arrogant pride that is in direct contradiction to the command "Love thy neighbor". He commits a deliberate act of malice against his neighbor and is guilty of the sin of Calumny. He is guilty of the eggregious sin of hypocrisy as well as of being a liar. However, it is worse than that. The person who is a liar and a hater of Christianity and Catholicism is often guilty of the sin of Scandal as well, for he often tries to win converts to his hatred.

Unfortunatly, such hatemongers existed in Jesus time as well;

Matthew 23:15 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You traverse sea and land to make one convert, and when that happens you make him a child of Gehenna twice as much as yourselves.

Calumny (the malicious damage of one's reputation), Scandal, hypocrisy, and false witness are very grave sins that cannot be justified by your disagreement with another faith.

If I witness, in love, to the incorrectness of the doctrines believed by the Mormon faith, I am trying to convert (help) someone. However, if I bear false witness and or/visciously attack a person, I am trying to harm them.

Smears against the Catholic Church in particular, and the Christian Churc in general, are rooted in a hatred for Jesus, even if they are masqueraded as religion.

Matthew 27:39 Those passing by reviled him, shaking their heads.

Mark 15:29 Those passing by reviled him, shaking their heads and saying, "Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days,

Luke 22:65 And they reviled him in saying many other things against him.

Luke 23:39 Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying, "Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us."

When considering the tactics of some people who devote entire websites and books to smaearing the Catholic church,

Results 1 - 10 of about 156,000 for catholic church is the antichrist.

Ask yourself this simple question. What would Jesus do? To those who say that they honestly believe that the Catholic Church is the anti-Christ, you are exactly who I am talking about. With very little effort, you could match what the Bible says about the Anti-Christ with the Catholic Church.

1) Anti-Christ existed in John's day (1 John 2:18)

2) Anti-Christ denies Christ as the Messiah and He denies the Father. (1 John 2:22)

3) Denies Christ's humanity (2 John 1:7)

As you can see, based on these verses, the Catholic Church could not possibly be the anti-Christ for she fits none of these criteria! A determination to fit antichrist to catholicism demands a misrepresentation of scripture or of catholic doctrine or both. Creating a web site or book to promote such nonsense is an act of calumny and scandal and, therefore, un-Christian, to say the least.

Non- Catholic Christians are not exempt from such abuse. They are routinely lumped in with radicals such as clinic bombers, arians and skin heads, anti-semites, mysogynists and all other manner of hate and defamation.

Again, the people who level these charges do not do so as an attempt to further serious dialogue but to cause pain and damage. It is a form of violence.

Those who are attacked can rejoice.

Matthew 10:25 It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher, for the slave that he become like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more those of his household!

Matthew 5:11 Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you (falsely) because of me.

Matthew 5:44 But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you,

If they didn't attack you, you would have cause to worry.

John 15:18 "If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.
John 15:19 If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.

Which brings us to possibly the most insidious of all....
The wolf in sheep's clothing.

Masquerading as Catholics and/or other Christians, these are secular humanists, fascists, communists and atheists who have infiltrated our churches to do the world's bidding in our name.

If your church promotes the gay lifestyle, abortion or euthanasia. If it supports communism, socialism or earth worship, it is not a Christian church.

This is why, the Church must have an authority and why we Catholics do have one. Afterall, even the devil can quote scripture.

Monday, April 13, 2009

*BEST OF DTB #1* Do Catholics worship Mary?

Argument #1

Pose this scenario to a fundamentalist.

Theresa lives a very good life. She seldom, if ever misses Church on Sunday, doesn't curse, smoke or drink. She gives genoursly over her time and money to the poor. Theresa is a devoted and faithful wife and mother who has never stolen, murdered or committed adultery.

This is not to say she is perfect, no one is. However, on balance, Theresa is a very decent person who tries her best to serve the Lord.

There is just one thing. Theresa has never been 'saved' in the manner fundamentalists describe it. She has never actually said the specific words;

"Jesus, I accept you today as my personal saviour".

Bob is Theresa's husband. 30 years ago, Bob was saved at an altar call. He was a devoted Christian for about 10 years then started to backslide a bit.

Now, 30 years later, Bob only goes to church at Easter and Christmas. He smokes, drinks to excess, and watches porn on his computer. Bob is currently having an affair on Theresa.

Which of these 2 are 'saved'?

If you are a true devotee of Sola Fide and Calvinism, you have no choice but to say that Bob goes to heaven and Theresa goes to hell.

The only thing that matters is an assent of faith. To be a Christian is to worship Christ as Lord and Savior and that worship is only possible with an assent of faith. Free will demands that you make a choice to accept and worship Christ.


Isn't it ironic that some of these same people accuse Catholics of worshiping Mary despite the fact that there is a complete abscence of, even an open denial to, such a assent of worship of Her?

Argument #2

Suppose Mary was alive on earth today and a member of your church.
Since the Messiah was her own Son, would she not be a truly devoted worshipper?

In a time of great trial, would you hesitate to ask her to pray for you to her Son?

Argument #3

I have been to many funerals in my life. Most of them were protestants. The most recent was for my 18 year old cousin- a Baptist- who had just been killed in a horrific car accident.

In not one funeral I have ever attended did the loved ones fail to say "I know in my heart he sees me and hears me". With the exception of those in hell, our loved ones certainly do see and hear us and they cheer us on as part of a great cloud of witnesses.

To fail to see this is to deny our faith.

Hebrews 12:1
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

Matthew 22:32
'I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob' ? He is not the God of the dead but of the living."

Mark 12:27
He is not the God of the dead, but of the living. You are badly mistaken!"

Luke 20:38
He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive."

Argument #4

In contending that the Hail Mary is idolotry, fundamentalists have some 'splainin'
to do. The entire prayer is lifted right from the face of Scripture.

Hail Mary, full of grace.
The Lord is with thee.

(Luke 1:28)

Blessed are you among women and
blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus

(Luke 1:42)

Holy Mary, Mother of God.

(Luke 1:43)

Pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of are death.

(Luke 6:27-36)

Jesus explicitly tells us to pray for each other and to ask each other to pray for us.

Yet, when we ask His own mother- the one full of grace, the blessed one, the mother of God, the Ark of the Covenant, the Woman clothed with the Sun (Revelation 11:19-12:1)- to pray for us, to HIM, we are accused of idolotry.

It's a funny old world, isn't it?

Argument # 5

Some Protestants claim that, in heaven, none of the Saints can hear any prayers or words outside of heaven. Further, they do not intercede on our behalf.

Scripture does not support such contentions.

Matthew 18
10"See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.

Revelation 8:4
The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel's hand.

Even this unfortunate passage shows that the Saints are not cloistered somewhere, unable to know of anything beyond heaven's gates....

Luke 16
19"There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21and longing to eat what fell from the rich man's table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.
22"The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham's side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23In hell,[
c] where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24So he called to him, 'Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.'
25"But Abraham replied, 'Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.'
27"He answered, 'Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father's house, 28for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.'
29"Abraham replied, 'They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.'
30" 'No, father Abraham,' he said, 'but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.'
31"He said to him, 'If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.' "

Argument # 6

Prayer is not worship.

Ask many fundamentalists what the highest form of woship is and they will tell you that it is 'prayer'.

Not so.

Prayer, in itself is not worship, unless the prayer is a prayer of worship.

That is why prayer, praise and worship are listed as seperate things. To pray, in it's most basic original form, means only to ask.


 /preɪ/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [prey] Show IPA
–verb (used with object)
to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to (God or an object of worship).
to offer (a prayer).
to bring, put, etc., by praying: to pray a soul into heaven.
to make earnest petition to (a person).
to make petition or entreaty for; crave: She prayed his forgiveness.
to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to God or to an object of worship.
to enter into spiritual communion with God or an object of worship through prayer.

It is natural that we have added a religious conotation to it but that- in it's simplest form- is not the original meaning of the word. It means to ask.... which, of course, Jesus invites us to do;

Mark 11:24
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

Many may say that I am parsing words but I am not. To pray, even in the religious sense, does not- of itself- constitute worship. The basic act of prayer is the act of asking. The act of adoration is the act of worshipping.

Prayer certainly can be worship and it can be false worship. That depends on who/what you are praying to and/or who/what you are praying for.

That is where so many fundamentalists get tripped up.

Let's, once again, look at what we Catholics say to Mary.

Hail Mary, full of grace. This is the correct translation of the words of Gabriel to Mary.
As such, they do not constitute worship but an assent to Biblical reality that Mary was filled with Grace from God.

Blessed are you, among women. Right here, We affirm her humanity and that, though she is most highly blessed among all women (and we would say among all those wholly created), she cannot be equal with God.

Holy Mary, Mother of God. Mother of God. She is not God. HER SON is God. Mary gave birth to a person, not a nature.

Pray for us. A simple request.

Some will say "Why can I not pray directly to Jesus?"

You certainly can and many do.

I ask you though. Would you hesitate to ask your mother to pray to Jesus for you?
If not, why would you wait a second to ask His mother?

She is much closer to him than your earthly mother.

Argument #7

"but God told us not to pray to the Queen of heaven"

No, God told us not to worship the false Queen of Heaven, not to not pray with the real one.

Jeremiah 7:18
The children gather wood, the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough and make cakes of bread for the Queen of Heaven. They pour out drink offerings to other gods to provoke me to anger.

Offerings...cakes....drinks...burnt offerings.....adoration...worship.

This verse, firstly, says nothing about prayer. However, if it did, it would constitute idolotry, not because prayer itself is idolotry but because Ishthar is a false goddess. Thus, she is no Queen of heaven at all but an idol meant to draw worship away from the true God. Mary draws us TO the true God. There is no legitimate basis by which this fantasm of man's imagination can be honored with such a title.

Mary, on the other hand....

Revelation 12

1A great and wondrous sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. 3Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. 4His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child the moment it was born. 5She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne.

Who was the Son this woman gave birth to? It's ok. You know the answer.

She wears a crown of 12 stars? What other saint has a crown of 12 stars?

Mary personifies the role of the Queen mother. Her Queenship comes forth from her position as mother of the King. (2 Kings 10:13)

Guess what else?

Jesus gave her to you as your mother as well, from the cross.

John 19:26-28

26When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, "Dear woman, here is your son," 27and to the disciple, "Here is your mother." From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

In fact, your Bible tells you that Mary's children are the true believers and they have the true testament of her Son.

Read for yourself from Revelation 12:17

17Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring—those who obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus.

Argument #8

Romans 3:10
As it is written: "There is no one righteous, not even one;

I cannot respond to this any better than the folks at

Romans 3, verse 10 says, " it is written: 'None is righteous, no, not one.'" Yet, James 5:16 says that the prayer of a righteous man availeth much. If absolutely no one is righteous, then who is James talking about? Luke chapter 1 says that Elizabeth and Zechariah were righteous before God. If absolutely no one is righteous, then how can that be? Is Scripture contradicting itself? No, the folks who interpret Romans as saying absolutely, without exception, no one is righteous, are misinterpreting that passage. They are failing to realize that the key to understanding Romans 3:10 is the phrase, "it is written."

Here in Romans, Paul is quoting from the O.T., Psalm 14 to be exact. In Psalm 14 it says, "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God. They are corrupt...there is none that does good.'" But then that same psalm goes on to talk about the "righteous." Well, if none has done good, who are these righteous the psalm is talking about? Obviously, when the psalmist says that none has done good, he is talking about the fools who say there is no God. He is not talking about absolutely everyone.

Just so Paul when he quotes from this psalm. Paul is not saying absolutely no one is righteous, if he was, then how do you explain all the Old and New Testament passages that refer to the righteous? In Romans 3:11 it says that no one seeks for God. Does that mean that absolutely no one is seeking God? No, to interpret it that way would be ludicrous!
Just so verse 23 which says that "all have sinned". Babies haven't sinned, have they? Little children haven't sinned, have they? No! This is not an absolute. There are exceptions. What about John the Baptist? Did he sin? Scripture says that he was filled with the Holy Spirit even from his mother's womb. Can someone who is filled with the Holy Spirit his entire life ever sin? It's something to think about.

So, it is perfectly legitimate to say that these passages from Romans, when interpreted in context, in no way conflict with the Church's teaching on Mary being without sin.

Argument #9

The Woman.

That you don't get the Old Testament or Mary doesn't mean we worship her.

Many protestants do not get who Mary is at all just like they don't get many aspects of faith.

Many people take a very dim view of the Old Testament as if God was just trying one form of salvation and replaced it with Jesus because it wasn't working. God doesn't make mistakes.

Immediatly as Adam and Eve fell from grace, God knew the awful price of sin and He knew what He would do about it.

Genesis 3:15

I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will strike at your head, while you strike at his heel."
You will notice that the verse does not say a woman but says the woman.
This is of critical importance. In it's context, Adam is the man and Eve is the woman. Through them, sin entered the world.
Again, from Genesis 3;
3:9 The LORD God then called to the man and asked him, "Where are you?"3:10 He answered, "I heard you in the garden; but I was afraid, because I was naked, so I hid myself."3:11 Then he asked, "Who told you that you were naked? You have eaten, then, from the tree of which I had forbidden you to eat!"3:12 The man replied, "The woman whom you put here with me--she gave me fruit from the tree, so I ate it."
The reason why this is important is that it provides prophetic context to 3:15.
Now, let's jump forward to the Gospels.
MT 8:20 Jesus answered him, "Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head."
MT 9:6 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins" --he then said to the paralytic, "Rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home."
Son of Man, literally translated son (descendant) of Adam (meaning man). Many of you may have already caught this. What may have gotten past you was what Mary was called!
John 2:4 (And) Jesus said to her, "Woman, how does your concern affect me? My hour has not yet come."
John 19:26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, "Woman, behold, your son."
Does it not strike you odd that Jesus refers to His own mother as "Woman". It actually sounds disrespectful until you think about it.

First, The law says "Honor your Father and Mother." Jesus certainly wouldn't revile his own mother and violate the law of God!

Leviticus 19:3
Revere your mother and father, and keep my sabbaths. I, the LORD, am your God.

Secondly, we see examples of all those he loved being referred to him by name. Even Judas! (Luke 22:48). Yet, He refers to His own mother with the seemingly dismissive "woman" rather than "mother" or "mom" or even "Mary".


There is nothing dismissive about it! Jesus wanted you to know who she is! The Woman! As Jesus (Son of Man) is the new Adam, Mary is the new Eve. The new Woman!

What does the Bible say about the first woman and the second one?

Genesis 3:20 The man called his wife Eve, because she became the mother of all the living.

So, we are all the children of Eve, as the first woman.

Yet, look again at Genesis 3:15 and John 19:26 The serpent wages war with the woman and her children. Jesus gave Mary to us as Mother while on the cross!

"Woman, behold thy son!"

Now...the big finish!

Revelation 12 tells us of the Woman clothed with Sun (v 1) who bears the savior (v5).
The serpent- just as Genesis 3 prescribes- wages war on HER and the rest of HER children!
who are the believers of God. (v17).

So, Mary becomes the mother of all the living in Christ, as Eve became the mother of all the living in the flesh. For, while it was Eve's disobedience that brought the world corruption, it was Mary's obedeience that brought the world salvation! For SHE brought us the Savior! That hearing and obeying the word is what makes Mary so special!

Luke 1:38 Mary said, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word." Then the angel departed from her.

1:43 And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord * should come to me?1:44 For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.1:45 Blessed are you who believed * that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled."

In another verse, Jesus seems, again, to be dismissive of His Mother until, again, you know the context.

Luke 11:27
While he was speaking, a woman from the crowd called out and said to him, "Blessed is the womb that carried you and the breasts at which you nursed."11:28 He replied, "Rather, blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it."

In other words, Jesus is saying, just as Elizabeth did, that Mary is blessed because she believed and acting in faith!

Argument # 10

The Ark of the Covenant.

For those of you who have only heard of the Ark of the Covenent from a Steven Spielberg movie,
I would advise you to open your Bible to the 25th chapter of Exodus. It is an exquisite box made with fine linen and gold and adorned with two images of Cherubs (so much for God not allowing any graven images at all) and made of Acacia wood- a wood known for it's incorruptibility. (that will come into play later.)

The Ark was magnificently built and must have been a sight to behold.

The purpose of the Ark was to hold the Word of God- the Torah and the Ten Commandments.

When ever Israel went into battle, led by the Ark, they never lost.

Now, the Ark was a created thing. It was not a god, nor did anyone ever think it was or accuse anyone of thinking it was. Yet, the Ark of the Covenant carried within it the Word of God and that fact made it Holy.

How holy?

Read for yourself.

1 Chronicles 13:8-108 David and all the Israelites were celebrating with all their might before God, with songs and with harps, lyres, tambourines, cymbals and trumpets.
9 When they came to the threshing floor of Kidon, Uzzah reached out his hand to steady the ark, because the oxen stumbled. 10 The LORD's anger burned against Uzzah, and he struck him down because he had put his hand on the ark. So he died there before God.


The Ark of the Covenant....

It was uncorruptible. (Hail, full of Grace)
It carried the Word of God (and the word became flesh and dwelt among us)
It brought forth the Covenant (this is the cup of my blood, the blood of the new covenant).

It was taken into heaven!

Psalm 132:8
arise, O LORD, and come to your resting place, you and the ark of your might.

It was seen in heaven!
Once again.....

11:19 Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder, an earthquake, and a violent hailstorm.
12:1 * A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman* clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.12:2 She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth.* 12:3 Then another sign appeared in the sky; it was a huge red dragon, * with seven heads and ten horns, and on its heads were seven diadems.12:4 Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky and hurled them down to the earth. Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth, to devour her child when she gave birth.12:5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod. * Her child was caught up to God and his throne.

How much clearer can it be? The new Woman/Eve, The Mother of God, The Ark of the Covenant, The Woman clothed with the Sun.

God? no. Worthy of worship? no. Important to your faith? You better believe it!


Do Catholics worship Mary?

Certainly not. She helps us worhip Jesus by His own providence that all the Saints help us, her foremost among them.

Tell me. If we worship Mary, What command does Mary give us, save one? (John 2:5)

Worship of Mary? Don't be silly. Protestants may disagree and be confused with many of our beliefs about Mary- perpetual virginity, assumption, immaculate conception....

but to suggest that we worship her is just beyond ridiculous.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Today is Good Friday.

All I can due is stand in awe.

Yes, I can do that because I know how it ends and what it means.

Heavenly Father, I offer you, on this most holy of days, the body and blood, soul and divinity of your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for my sins and those of the whole world.

I thank you for your unfathomable mercy that saved me from hell- a hell I surely deserved and I, from the very depths of my being, implore you- For the sake of His sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Holy Mighty One, Holy Eternal one, Holy Immortal one, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Lord Jesus Christ, my incarnate Lord. What words can I speak today to thank you for what you did for me? Dare I even look at the suffering that my sin and shame brought you?

The only gift I can give to you today is to renew my baptismal vows to you.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Today, once again, I renounce satan and all his works and all his pomps.

I declare that there is only one God, the Creator, Preserver and Ruler of all things and the Father of all men.

I declare this God and Father to be a just judge who rewards the good and punishes the wicked.

I believe that this one and only God exists in three Divine persons, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

I believe that the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, Jesus Christ, was made man, was conceived of the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried, descended into hell, and on the third day rose again from the dead, ascended into heaven, sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty, and from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead

I believe that the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit, enables us to live and do what is right and just and without His grace, none can be saved.

I believe in and openly profess the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, the Communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting

I pledge to you, this day, Lord Jesus, to live in accordance with your Holy doctrine, ever to remain faithful to Your Catholic Church, to avoid sin, to love God with my whole heart, and my neighbor as myself.


Holy Spirit. You are my advocate, sent by the promise of Jesus. Infuse my heart with grace and help me. Have pity on a wretched sinner. Without your grace, I can do nothing and be nothing. With your grace, there is naught that I cannot do within the will of God.

I ask you humbly, Spirit to infuse me with your grace, my family, friends, relations and all whom I may come in contact with this day. Holy Spirit, at Pentecost, you descended into Our Lady and the Apostles in the form of tongues of fire.

I implore you to infuse the world with the fire of your love that it may know, once again, the divine marks of your church. Burn off the smog and smoke of man-made religion so that standing, in all it's majesty, will be your One Church, your Holy Church, Your Apostolic Church which, of course, is your Roman Catholic Church.

Blessed Mary, ever virgin. You stood at the foot of the cross and watched your divine Son die this day. You who bore Him, nursed Him, raised Him, protected Him and loved Him with all your heart. Look past the silliness of those who claim that we worship you.

We thank you, blessed Lady for showing us the way to your Son.

When God called for your service in bringing Him to us, you humbly replied "Be it done unto me according to your word" (Luke 1:38). When they needed wine at the wedding at Cana, you simply told them "Do whatever He tells you"

Dear Lady, your cousin Elizabeth, your Divine Son and all generations have called you blessed because you heard the word of God and obeyed it. (Luke 1:42, Luke 1:45, Luke 1:48, Luke 11:27-28)

Dear Mary, I ask that you ask your Divine Son to forgive those who utter blasphemy by denying your perpetual virginity, your immaculate conception and your rightful titles of Queen of Heaven, Ark of the Covenant, and Mother of God.

I thank you Mary, who Jesus gave to me as Spiritual mother (John 19:25-27, Revelation 12:1-17) for the example you showed us.

I know that, as Jesus chose you to bring Him to us the first time, as a humble Jewish girl, He has chosen you to bring Him to us again as a Woman clothed with the Sun.

I thank you God for making me Catholic. I could not dream of being anything else today.


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Sola Scriptura is false

In this post, I will accomplish 2 things.

1) Counter an attempted defense I found from a Protestant of the doctrine of Sola Scriptura.
2) Demonstrate how the doctrine is not merely un-Biblical but illogical and untenable as well.

As you will see, In fact, my opponent really never makes much of a defense at all of Sola Scriptura, as defined by Protestants but creates a few strawmen to try and divert you from the actual issue at hand. For those of you who don't know, a "Strawman" is a false argument that refutes a position the opponent never actually took.

Let's start with an honest discussion of what Sola Scriptura suggests and how that diverges from logic and truth. There are five basic professions upon which protestants build their case for Sola Scriptura.

Let's take them one at a time.

1) The inerrancy or infallibility of Sacred Scripture.

Simply stated, all Divinely inspired Scripture is free from doctrinal or moral error.

Many protestants will insist that Catholics disagree with this foundational principle but that argument is silly and untenable. While defending the infallible way that truths are transmitted by God, through the Scriptures, we cannot make a blanket defense of how those truths are received by readers. Protestants routinely make very errant interpretations of inerrant scriptures. It's kind of like me talking to my teenage daughter. I say one thing, she hears something very different. My message was correct, the way she interpreted it wasn't.

2) The authority of Scripture.
As God's word in human form, the Scriptures are, of course, supremely authoritative. That is, the truths expounded and the commands given are binding. Again, though, the transmitted truths and the received interpretations, are often dangerously at variance. We are bound by what God says in the Scriptures, not by what misguided protestants zealously and incorrectly quote incorrectly and out of context.

As far as being authoritative, the Scriptures are. As far as being authority, they are not, for exactly the reasons stated above.

I am not splitting hairs. It is a true and valuable distinction.


Having or arising from authority; official: an authoritative decree; authoritative sources.
Of acknowledged accuracy or excellence; highly reliable: an authoritative account of the revolution.
Wielding authority; commanding: the captain's authoritative manner.

the power to determine, adjudicate, or otherwise settle issues or disputes; jurisdiction; the right to control, command, or determine.
2. a power or right delegated or given; authorization: Who has the authority to grant permission?
3.a person or body of persons in whom authority is vested, as a governmental agency.
4.Usually, authorities. persons having the legal power to make and enforce the law; government: They finally persuaded the authorities that they were not involved in espionage.

The Scriptures, therefore, are not God's authority itself but rise from God's authority and are, thus, authoritative. Simply put, the Bible is not God's authority but are created by an exercise or action of God's authority.

The reason the distinction is so critical is that one is possible to mis-interpret, the other, impossible.

At Judgement, when you see God face-to-face, all human misunderstanding is stripped away and you will know God's judgement of you. Here, in flesh and blood, on earth, it is infinitely harder to determine His will for us. Anyone unwilling to concede this point is simply dishonest.

The Scriptures, therefore, though perfect in their authoritativeness, are not authority themselves because they cannot speak for themselves. If you are confused about the Scriptures, you will seek someone or something that you trust to help your understanding. This has been proven true by Matt and even this little truth, by itself, nullifies Sola Scriptura. As God transmits His word to us, and followers write that word, it is constrained by the limitations of written word.

I will prove it.

If you grew up in America and you had never seen a Bible and I presented you one written in Vietnamese, it would be of no value to you. The inerrancy and authoritativeness of the word is not diminished in the least. Yet, it has reached you in a form you cannot understand and is therefore, of no value to you. This again, refutes Sola Scriptura's "authority" argument. The words are authoritative but they are not authority because the printed words do not have a will or a power of their own but are human expressions of the Divine will and power, with the human limitations.

This is part of the trade off of a God who seeks to reach us through human cooperation. He has no limitations, but we do. There are no limitations in the Inspiration of His word but there are in it's recording and, even more so, in it's interpretation. Therefore, the Bible is not and cannot be an authority because it requires interpretation.

The Bible says the same about speaking in tongues.

1 Corinthians 14:4-6
4He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. 5I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified.
6Now, brothers, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction?

3) The material sufficiency of scripture.
Simply stated, the doctrine of material sufficiency is the notion that everything we need to know about salvation can be found in the scriptures and that not one word can be added or subtracted to any of the teachings in the 66 specific books in the Protestant canon.

The notion is, of course, absurd and untenable.

Protestants will often point to Revelation chapter 22 to support this position;

18I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book. 19And if anyone takes words away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

The problem is that that admonition refers to the book- Revelation and not to the library of books- the Bible, to which it belongs. Similar admonitions occur in the Old Testament books of Deuteronomy and Proverbs and the Gospel of Matthew was written 18 years after Revelation.

One place where the Scriptures talk about what would be required, in terms of material sufficiency to record all of Jesus teachings, tells it quite plainly;

John 21:25 Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.

To intimate that everything God could ever have to say could be contained in 66 specific books is beyond silly. We, as humans, could not hope to contain the full mind of God in any kind of recorded form.

4) The practical sufficiency of scripture.
If accepting material sufficiency is swallowing a camel, accepting practical sufficiency is swallowing a whale. Material sufficiency suggests that everything we need to know about salvation exists in (is transmitted to) the Scriptures. Even if it were proven true-and it certainly can't be- it still would not validate Sola Scriptura. For Sola Scriptura to be provable, one must demonstrate practical sufficiency.

In other words, if there are no extra-Biblical authorities upon which we can depend, then the Bible-itself must be able to tell me it's own story. That is, I must be able to-without any assistance- open my Bible, read it and easily understand it unto my own salvation and anyone else must be able to do likewise.

This is an absurd doctrine that directly contradicts scripture.

2 Peter 3:16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

5) The doctrinal and historical basis of Sola Scriptura.
Boasting that it is inviolate as a doctrine of faith, protestants deny that it is a new doctrine and claim that they are simply restoring what the early church taught. As we proceed, you will see Matt produce zero historical or Biblical evidence to support such a claim.

Now, having given you a foundation from which a discussion can grow, let's get started with Matt's observations.

For ease of view, my opponent's comments will be in orange.

The Bible’s case for Sola Scriptura and the regulative principle

Regulative principle) “The theory of church government and worship that stipulates that not only church doctrine but also church practice must be based on clear scripture warrant. That is we must have a clear Biblical command or precedent, expressed or implied, for all we introduce into the work and worship of the church. It is the position laid down in the Westminster Confession of Faith and is the opposite of the normative principle espoused by Lutherans and Anglicans.”
Alan Cairns Dictionary of Theology.

In his very first paragraph, this person undercuts his own entire case, that the Bible stands alone, by eliciting the observations of another person. Of course, he is welcome to agree with another fellow's views and share them here. The problem is that he opens himself up to the same "adding to the Bible" accusations he will try to use on me.

Nevertheless, his citation is instructive because, as I told you he would, he is trying to set a premise upon which our debate will rest.

"not only church doctrine but also church practice must be based on clear scripture warrant. That is we must have a clear Biblical command or precedent, expressed or implied, for all we introduce into the work and worship of the church."

What he is arguing here is practical sufficiency as a premise. The problem is that practical sufficiency is what is disputed in this very argument. Practical sufficiency is one of the pillars of his case. It must certainly be established to allow even the plausibility (if not the necessity, of Sola Scriptura). In essence, he is attempting to offer, as evidence, the very thing that is in dispute!

He is making a circular argument. A circular argument is an argument in which the conclusion is found in the premise.

Person A: "I am George Washington".
Person B: "How can I know you are George Washington?"
Person A: "Because I, George Washington, just told you so"

Atheists correctly accuse protestants of using this type of argument to defend the Bible.

Protestant: "The Bible is God's word"
Atheist: "How can I know it's God's word?"
Protestant: "because it says so"
Atheist: "So does the Koran"

Unfortunately, it is the Atheist that wins the argument. Not on the merits of his implied equivalency between the Koran and The Bible (they are certainly not equivalent) , but in the weakness of the Protestant's circular argument.

Let's read more ;

Authority of the scriptures

Psa 33:4-19 For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth. He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him. For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast. The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance. The LORD looketh from heaven; he beholdeth all the sons of men. From the place of his habitation he looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth. He fashioneth their hearts alike; he considereth all their works. There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength. A horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength. Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.

Here he is making an argument that is a complete non-sequiter. He argues here, in favor of God's authority and the validity of God's word (which have never been disputed), attempting to imply that that proves Scriptural sufficiency by consequence. It doesn't. The issues are unrelated.

An analagous argument would be to say that Oaks are not trees because Redwoods are. That Redwoods are trees is not in dispute. However, to argue that, since Redwoods are trees, Oaks cannot be trees is a complete non-sequiter.
The argument makes no sense.

If you are confused, take a moment to reread my remarks distinguishing God- the Authority from the Bible- the authoritative expression of God's word.

One is infinite, omnipotent power, the other is ink on paper, with the inherent limitations that brings. It is crucial that you not miss what I am saying here.

The written Biblical word flows through a marriage of the Divine and infinite with the human and material. If you spill spaghetti on your Bible, you certainly won't ruin God's word....but you may very well ruin your ability to read the written, human expression of that word...unless you can get a new Bible.

If I give you a Bible written in Chinese, it is certainly no less infallible than yours, but manifestly less practically sufficient to you.

So, while he goes to great extent to manifest God's authority- an undisputed point, he fails to draw a straight line connecting God's transmitted will, to His own (allegedly infallible) reception of that will. Thus, though we can say that every word from God is truth, we cannot say that this person has received that truth unmolested. In fact, he is playing a shell game here. In purporting to defend God's word, he is in fact, trying to remove objection to his own interpretation.

Follow along, I will show you.

Many of us who read the Word of God don’t understand just who is talking to us. The authority of the Word of God created the universe we live in six days. Yet we think it is not authoritative over man!

Observe the clever theological slight of hand. It is subtle but discernible if you take it in slices.

Many of us (implication- those who disagree with him) who read the Word of God don’t understand just who is talking to us. The authority of the Word of God created the universe we live in six days. Yet we think it is not authoritative over man!

What my opponent is suggesting here is that the Word of God in written form is the same as the Word of God in Divine form. Not that it is from the same but that it IS the same. He then uses this premise to create a strawman I have already rebuffed- namely that the Word of God, in written form, is not authoritative. It certainly is authoritative, as I have already said. That is, it springs from God's authority. It is however, not the Authority itself.

My opponent's Bible did not create the world in six days anymore than my opponent created the world in six days, by quoting it. The Bible is not God. We do not worship a book. In like manner, the Church you go to is not God, it is a place you go to worship God, but built by human hands. The Bible is not God. The Bible is a man-made means by which we can come to know God but, by no stretch of the imagination, is it the only means by which we can come to know God and nowhere does it ever claim to be.

Please listen patiently to me and do not be drawn in by a clever shell game. By playing on two totally different manifestations of the term Word of God, my opponent is trying to equate all who disagree with him, on scriptural issues, as being in opposition to the incarnate word. It is a laughable proposition at best.

He is, exactly as I said, setting up those who disagree with him as disagreeing with God. The implication of such an argument is his ability to infallibly interpret Scripture- an ability he will not even attempt to demonstrate.

If he were in the actual prescence of the Divine Word, he would have none of the man-made superstitions he has. God's will-in direct revelation- is impossible to misunderstand, yet God's will, through a human pen, presents difficulties that are harder to overcome.

Not impossible, mind you, but certainly requiring more effort than he is willing to expend. Yet, rather than provide a cogent defense of his own (incorrect) interpretation, he accuses those who disagree with him of rejecting God's word. It is silly.

I don't reject God's word. I reject my opponent's word which bares little resemblence to God's.

Let's continue;

2Pe 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,2Pe 3:4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.2Pe 3:5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:2Pe 3:6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:2Pe 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.

You again, see that he is trying to sell you on the argument that those who do not accept his premise of practical sufficiency are scoffing against the very power (omnipotence) of God or the authority (inerrancy) of His word. As you can plainly see, this argument holds no water because they are three, independent theological qualities.

Liberal Protestants and Catholics who deny the fact of God’s creation have started their gospels blaspheming God and specifically Jesus Christ.

Now you can see my opponent's desperation. No Catholics deny God's creation and they certainly don't blaspheme Christ. but what choice does he have but to set up straw men and knock them down? It might also be mentioned that I am a rock-rib Conservative who does not believe in Darwinistic evolution. My opponent simply assumes otherwise.

I told you folks, quite plainly, that he would never make a Scripturally based apology for Sola Scriptura. He won't because he can't. His arguments are vapid so he can only resort to jousting windmills.

Col 1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

Do you see a pattern here? All he can do is reaffirm God's authority, as if it has ever been disputed. His only hope to win this debate is to persuade you that I have a diminished sense of God's Divine authority. It is concession of my argument by refusing to contest it.

It get's worse....

The way we view the authority of the Word of God is going to reflect on the way we understand God and Christ.

Again, with the implication of a rejection of God and the clever wordplay.

It really is very, very subtle and clever and dishonest.

When he says "The way we view the authority of the Word of God", just what is he saying? The context is critical and yet it is deliberatly not provided. That way, as earlier, he can play both sides.

The "Word of God", Jesus is, of course, the authority. The "Word of God", the Bible is not. The latter comes from the former. As I stated before, the Bible simply cannot be more than it's material limitations will allow. Matt's Bible will eventually rot and become part of the earth- as many of the ancient scrolls did. Does that mean the "Word of God" rots and diminishes? far from it!

If he were arguing merely that opposing the expressed Word of God, vis-a-vis the Scriptures is expressing an open defiance of Our Lord, he would have a salient point, if he had a basis for saying so. The problem for him is that he has, once again, relied on a wholly unsubstantiated premise to make his case. He, once again, is riding round and round on a circular argument.

The Bible, as interpreted by him, is the only way God can express himself.
My opponent's interpretation is infallible because he interpreted it that way and if you disagree with him, you don't believe in God or creation.

Of course, the rest of us can see right through such an outrageous claim.

If we truly believe in God we will understand his omniscience and omnipresence.

and yet, being omniscient and omniprescent, His revelation to us is exclusively confined to 66 specific books of which my opponent is impotent to speak to the veracity of. What a ridiculous argument. Absent anything in scripture to support Sola Scriptura, relying on the very canon set by the very Magisterial authority he rejects, my opponent arrogantly claims that the rejection of a doctrine he cannot support is nothing less than a denial of the omniscence and omniprescence of God.

In doing so, it is MY OPPONENT that denies God's omnipotence and omniprescence. It is exactly that Omnipotence and Omniprescence that saved millions during the first 350 years of the Church when there was no Bible! It was exactly that Omnipotence and Omniprescence that saved millions more for the thousand years more before the printing press made Bibles common place.
My opponent is arguing that God cannot save man without the Bible! I have news for him! If every single Bible in the world turned into a puff of smoke tomorrow, countless millions would still find salvation through the Catholic Church. It is the Church that gave us the Bible. The Bible is a tool of the Church and draws it's authority from the Church because only the Church can speak to it's veracity.

"I would not even believe the Scriptures if not first led to them by the Church" ~ Augustine (one of the principal people responsible for the formation of the Bible.

but just listen to my opponent trap himself even more....

Once we have truly understood the sovereignty of God we respect his deity and reject the religious sovereignty of man.1Pe 1:24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:1Pe 1:25 But the word of the Lord endureth forever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

and yet, my opponent's entire religion is based on 66 Books written by men. Oh, we could very well say that they are inspired by God, though written by men but, no, my opponent says that we must reject all religious sovereignty of humans.

What does God say about that?

Matthew 23

1Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2"The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. 3So you must obey them and do everything they tell you.

Luke 10:16"He who listens to you listens to me; he who rejects you rejects me; but he who rejects me rejects him who sent me."

1 Thessalonians 4:7-9
7For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit.

Yet, my opponent says;

Once we have truly understood the sovereignty of God we respect his deity and reject the religious sovereignty of man.

Chapter and Verse, please?

Instead of making a scriptural defense for the Bible as the sole authority (or even an authority at all), my opponent seems content to build unsubstantiated premise upon unsubstantiated premise. He insists that the worship of God demands rejection of all human authority yet the Scriptures state just the reverse...but, by all means, let's continue....

The word of God is pure
Psa 12:6 The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.Psa 12:7 Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation forever.

Once again, built on the unsupported (and unsupportable) premise that the Bible only is God's Word.

For if the Bible ALONE is God's word than, by sheer necessity of consequence, we must be told that, IN THE BIBLE, in no uncertain terms.

Where is it? I am still waiting for him to stop dancing and provide a SCRIPTURAL defense, not just a philosophical defense.

Isn't it ironic that Mr. Bible alone cannot defend this doctrine from the Bible?

Regulative instruction
Deu 4:2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.The proponents of Catholicism and the normative principle interpret this in a very ignorant way. They simply spout off that that if this passage were to be taken literally we could have no more books than the torah. However, the text is not concerned with whether there would be any more revelation or not. We simply look at the clause “word which I command you” and also “that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD” it is obvious this was a prescribed hermeneutic. Since the words of God are pure we must give all of the message authority and not simply shrink back from difficult laws or passages. We should not reinterpret the revelation brought to us from Jehovah but instead receive them.

So, again. The words of Jesus.

Luke 10:16"He who listens to you listens to me; he who rejects you rejects me; but he who rejects me rejects him who sent me."

God COMMANDED you to be obedient to the Church. Why aren't you?

God chose Prophets to speak on His behalf, were we free to reject them?

My opponent's entire argument is the height of duplicity. For, without the Catholic Church, you have no mechanism by which to even know which of the hundreds of writings purporting to be Scripture actually are. Absent the Church how can you POSSIBLY know that the Gospel of Thomas is not Sacred Scripture but the Gospel of Luke is? Absent the Catholic Church, you wouldn't even know the author of the first Gospel!

You rely wholly on Catholicism to even have a Bible yet you presume that it nullifies the commands of God and 2,000 years of orthodoxy because you say so???

The arrogance is astounding!

Make it plain.Hab 2:2 And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.It is the contention of all God mimicking false religion that the Word of the Lord is not understandable. That God has went about the effort of preserving Bible and the faith of billions throughout the millennia but only to give us a mysterious code
which most Christians will be incapable to understand.

So, Peter is lying here about Paul?

2 Peter 3:16He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

Cain and abel
Gen 4:3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.Gen 4:4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:Gen 4:5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.Gen 4:6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?Gen 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.Aaron’s SonsLev 10:1 And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not.Lev 10:2 And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.Saul’s disobedience of the regulative principle 1Sa 15:10 Then came the word of the LORD unto Samuel, saying,1Sa 15:11 It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the LORD all night. The phrase “repenteth me” basically means that God is going to change his relationship with Saul. Since Saul has not followed Jehovah’s commandments.1Sa 15:12 And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, it was told Samuel, saying, Saul came to Carmel, and, behold, he set him up a place, and is gone about, and passed on, and gone down to Gilgal.1Sa 15:13 And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said unto him, Blessed be thou of the LORD: I have performed the commandment of the LORD.And here we see Saul greeting Samuel with the claim that he has indeed been obedient to Jehovah. This is interesting because it appears Saul may really believe he has done this; since he has made the claim before even asked on the subject.1Sa 15:14 And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?1Sa 15:15 And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed. So here we see Saul reinterpreting a commandment. He has decided that he may take away from the commandment of God; since has decided not to destroy everything of the Amalekites. Then he has decided to add to the commandment of God by instituting a sacrifice of the meats from there cattle. Both of these are a contradiction to the regulative principle.1Sa 15:16 Then Samuel said unto Saul, Stay, and I will tell thee what the LORD hath said to me this night. And he said unto him, Say on.1Sa 15:17 And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel?1Sa 15:18 And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.1Sa 15:19 Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?1Sa 15:20 And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.1Sa 15:21 But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal. Here Samuel starts his case with reminding Saul of his humble beginning. This reminds us of how small human authority is. There is also the possible indictment that Paul was not simply motivated by God but by greed since he kept their treasures. Saul believed he obeyed in a “normative” sense. He did not contradict the commandment outright he simply made a few adjustments to it. Then he argues that this was made up for anyway because he had the people sacrifice unto God.1Sa 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.1Sa 15:23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.This is a key point toward true and Godly Christian faith. Man’s worship is nothing if it is brought with the hypocrisy of disobedience. Worship is a statement of faith. Yet obedience is proof of faith. The fact of disobedience disproves the statement of faith in worship. 1Sa 15:24 And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.1Sa 15:25 Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD.1Sa 15:26 And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD hath rejected thee from being king over Israel.1Sa 15:27 And as Samuel turned about to go away, he laid hold upon the skirt of his mantle, and it rent.1Sa 15:28 And Samuel said unto him, The LORD hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou.1Sa 15:29 And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.The indictment sticks. Saul tries to persuade Samuel to forgive his sin. He does not however petition the Lord as David later would and as a result; we see the “straight talk” of Samuel. The Lord is not like a man who can be manipulated. The Lord is unchanging and His word is unchanging. Therefore obedience to God must be complete, where we neither add nor subtract from his holy commands.

A pretty exhaustive collection of scriptures that prove that defiance of God is punishable, that God is sovereign, that His word is sovereign.... nothing that is in dispute or ever has been.

You will notice what he does not show. At no time does he demonstrate that Saul's authority or Moses' or Aaron's were not divinely instituted. At no point does Matt show that Moses did not exercise authority over his flock, or did David, or Solomon, or even the Pharisees.

He cannot show that and will not attempt to do so. What he will continue to do is keep clanging his hammer about ;
1) God's power
2) The cost of disobedience.

It is appropriate to review what my opponent has not made a defense for;

1) The Bible- itself as an acting authority.
2) Material Sufficiency
3) Practical Sufficiency.
4) A Biblical or Historical foundation for sole Scriptural rule.

He hasn't, he won't, he can't.

The Wisdom of the Regulative principle
Pro 30:5 Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.Pro 30:6 Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.Here we have a very obvious admonition in the book of proverbs not to add to God’s word. Here we will here the echoes of mindless pigs snorting “if that’s true then we should stop the Bible at proverbs!” The only question is, if we are not supposed to add to God’s word then what does this passage mean???

Well... one could argue that mindless pigs are not to create doctrines like Sola Scriptura out of thin air....but that would be provocative. I will let him stew in his own venom whilst I calmly refute his argument.

When one constructs an argument, the premise of the argument has to be established. If the premise is unestablished, you commit the logical fallacy of an insufficient premise. If the premise is untrue, you commit the fallacy of a false premise. If the false, or unsupported, premise is in the conclusion, you commit what is known as a circular argument.

I am disputing, and demanding that you support, your premise that there is no other way God speaks to, or has spoken to, His people except for the Bible. That only the Bible is God's word. Thus far, you have not even attempted to meet that burden of proof. Therefore, when you ask a question like

The only question is, if we are not supposed to add to God’s word then what does this passage mean???

My answer is that you can presuppose that it means anything you want to believe it means but you have not demonstrated;
1) That only the Bible is God's word.
2) That the Catholic Church has added anything to God's word, even it it were only the Bible.
3) That you have any authority by which you can even identify Scripture, much less properly interpret it.

Now, you are free, of course to believe such things. However, belief does not constitute evidence.
We are now very deep into this rambling diatribe of yours and you are still yet to provide evidence of a single disputed point. Not one.

All of your arguments are by implication. Not one is supported by direct evidence of any kind.

So, what does it mean "Don't add to God's word?"

The Book of Mormon?
The Koran?
The baptist confessions?

all false religions adding to expressed Christian doctrine.

Not even one of them within 900 years of Christ's death.

The uniform lordship of the lawDeu 11:8 Therefore shall ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it;Who are we to declare the word of God null and void? If God’s Word tell us that a command does not apply, then that is one thing. But when we think that man has the authority to change the Word of God we are quite frankly degenerate idiots. We are like toddlers who are screaming at mommy and Daddy “NO!!!!”, when in fact we have no authority. The problem when a toddler traditionally does this they are asking for a spanking. This is what the religious world is in for. We have played the whore and have ruined the family name of God. So now we are in for a spanking.

Same pattern. Unsupported, unsubstantiated rhetoric . Nothing new here. A false premise, built on a circular argument, wrapped around a non-sequiter.

Ironic too, since is the one with all the doctrine that he cant defend.

The temptations of Christ Of the necessity of Scripture
Mat 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.Mat 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.Mat 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.Jesus proclaims that the authority of the word of God is so essential that one may live by it even with out bread. Yet many sacramental churches practice the giving of bread with out the complete word of God.

1) Jesus does not say that we live without bread, He said we don't live by bread alone.

2) He said we live by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, not only by those that are on paper.

3) God commands us to eat that bread in John 6

4) There is more scripture taught in a Catholic Church than all other Churches combined. Catholics cover pretty much the entire Bible in 3 years. Fundamentalists generally ignore about 80% of the NT.

5) Nobody has disputed the necessity of Scripture. That is like your bread argument. By affirming the need for bread, you would argue that I am denying the need for water. Another silly and inane argument.

Of manipulating God’s authorityMat 4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,Mat 4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.Mat 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.To save his life and reveal himself to be who he is Jesus would isolate and abuse one verse from the word of God. … of other authoritiesMat 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;Mat 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.Mat 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.Mat 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.Jesus would not bow to any other authority than God even if it lost him the adulation of the world. Yet today preachers will revere pagan doctrine for just an ounce of popularity.

unsubstantiated, irrelevant, not germaine.
rinse, repeat.

Stil waiting for the verse showing the Bible alone. Is it coming?

Jesus on the Pharisees and traditions of men

Mat 15:1 Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying,Mat 15:2 Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. Mat 15:3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?Mat 15:4 For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.Mat 15:5 But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me;Mat 15:6 And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.Mat 15:7 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,Mat 15:8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.Mat 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.Jesus is specific here in making a distinction between God’s Word and it’s authority against man’s word and it’s authority. Those who claim the power of human tradition are assaulting the Sovereign Lord. This type of worship of God is empty and worthless. It is truly pitiful to see these dead churches waste so much energy.

OK. It's time for me to put this to rest.

Oral, Sacred tradition.

2 Thessalonians
13But we ought always to thank God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because from the beginning God chose you[b] to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. 14He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.

Oral, Sacred tradition.

1 Corinthians 11
1Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
Propriety in Worship 2I praise you for remembering me in everything and for
holding to the teachings, just as I passed them on to you.

Oral, Sacred tradition.

2 Timothy 2
1You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. 2And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.

1 Thessalonians 2
13And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe.

It is silly to believe Jesus was condemning Sacred tradition. Jesus was condemning hypocritical tradition.

Mat 23:4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.Mat 23:7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.Mat 23:8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.Mat 23:9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.Mat 23:10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.Mat 23:23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.Mat 23:25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.Mat 23:26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.When the religious authorities degrade the authority of the word of God they are able to magnify themselves to God-like status. When ever we approach a minister of God and they give us a sense of superiority or celebrity. They also have the hypocritical tendency to have higher standards for the disciples than for themselves.

Yet, Jesus said of them, to the people...

Matthew 23
Seven Woes 1Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2"The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. 3So you must obey them and do everything they tell you.
But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.

So, the church is run by sinners andJesus will deal with those who get out of hand.

But Jesus said YOU MUST OBEY THEM.

Here, read this one...

Hebrews 13:17 Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.

and to just told all your flock that they dont have to listen to earthly people. Perhaps you need to rethink that?

No other foundation

1Co 3:10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.1Co 3:11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.1Co 3:12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;1Co 3:13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.When we claim Christianity and try to produce our own works and traditions and impose them upon His church we are building the house of God with wood hey and stubble. These are useless hindrances to ministry and they will be burned up in the Day of the Lord.

That isn't even what those passages refer to! Those are passages affirming the need for good works.
Mat 7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:Mat 7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.Mat 7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:Mat 7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.Mat 7:28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:Mat 7:29 For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.Jesus wants build our lives upon him and his teachings. Man made teachings will not last. Remember that, manmade teachings will not last.

Once again, you have made an argument against Sola Fide but not one supporting Sola Scriptura. These Scriptures insist on doing God's will...which, of course means being a Catholic.

Authority for the church2Pe 3:1 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:2Pe 3:2 That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:If Peter was the 1st Pope, then it would be wise for Catholics to adhere to his teachings. Specifically, to follow the teachings of the OT prophets and the NT apostles. We may have no record of the invention of apostolic succession. Yet we have clear testimony of the authority of the scriptures.

No record of Apostolic succession?? The Apostles did not replace Judas Iscariot? Apostolic sucession is a demonstrable historical fact.

My opponent still has not made a defense of Sola Scriptura.

Prohibitions on will worship

Col 2:18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,Col 2:19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.Col 2:20 Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances,Col 2:21 (Touch not; taste not; handle not;Col 2:22 Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?Col 2:23 Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body: not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.Without the authority of scripture we are simply using our imaginations as it concerns the spiritual realm. Religion becomes manmade. Yet man has no qualifications for true religion and spirituality.

The defense still has not been presented.

Prohibitions on legendsTit 1:13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;Tit 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.Fables 3454 muthos {moo'-thos}perhaps from the same as 3453 (through the idea of tuition); TDNT - 4:762,610; n mAV - fable 5; 51) a speech, word, saying 2) a narrative, story 2a) a true narrative 2b) a fiction, a fable 2b1) an invention, a falsehoodHere we see that the idea of following fables is ludicrous to Paul. This contradicts the liberal attitude about the Bible. If legends are prohibited then Scripture can not be legend.Prohibitions on philosophyCol 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.Here we see again that neither traditions nor philosophy may be added to the Word of God. Yet in the Catholic Church, the priests were trained in pagan philosophy as soon as they controlled the Roman Empire. In the case of the Alexandrine churches the pagan philosophy was instituted almost initially. The New Testament church is based solely on the scriptures. Not to say that NT are impervious to error. But their foundation is in the divine.Revelations cursesRev 22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:Rev 22:19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.So here we see the regulative principle in action for the book of revelation. Now the apologist for liberal and Catholics argue this principle is only commanded of this individual book. Yet these same characters treat all the scriptures including revelation without applying those same principles. The liberals and Catholics deny the tribulation. The liberals deny the final judgement. The Catholics want to add millions of years of purgatory. The Mormons want add two other heavens deny hell and make Joseph Smith a judge in a panel with Christ and Elohim. The Muslims want to add 70 virgins, deny the Deity of Christ, change the name of God to Allah, and claim that Muslims will take the world over by force. The Jehovah’s witness want to only admit 144,000 who will no longer be Jewish, deny the reality of hell and have the power to claim the date of Christ return even though they have failed a dozen times. If we want a true relationship with God then we must listen to him and be careful that he is not misrepresented. Ultimately we must ask our selves as we worship the only wise Jehovah. Is it about him or us? Who gets the glory?We must remember the great request of our Lord’s recommended prayer. (The same one omitted by liberals and Catholics.) Mat 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

In summary.

At no point does my opponent even attempt to defend the doctrine of Sola Scriptura Scripturally. He talks about everything from the worship of Angels to a doxology added to the Lord's prayer.

I guess he thought that I would be tired or impressed by his many words.

Nevertheless, if he could have defended Sola Scriptura, he would have done so quickly.

My opponent will claim that he did indeed make a Scriptural defense of Sola Scriptura (after all, that is what he titled his piece). Anyone can see that he did not.

Before I go into a practical refutation of Sola Scriptura, let me recant the major points that have been made here and what he will claim he argued vs what he actually did argue.

Sola Scriptura means the Bible alone. My opponent was very clear in his assertion that no church doctrine or practice can accepted that is not clearly expressed on the face of scripture. He not only makes this claim, but arrogantly so.

In his words;

Hab 2:2 And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.It is the contention of all God mimicking false religion that the Word of the Lord is not understandable. That God has went about the effort of preserving Bible and the faith of billions throughout the millennia but only to give us a mysterious code which most Christians will be incapable to understand.

Of course, God Himself, says, of hypocrites;

Proverbs 30:11-13
11 "There are those who curse their fathers and do not bless their mothers;
12 those who are pure in their own eyes and yet are not cleansed of their filth;
13 those whose eyes are ever so haughty,whose glances are so disdainful;

Luke 18
9To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else, Jesus told this parable: 10"Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11The Pharisee stood up and prayed about[a] himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.'
13"But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.'
14"I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."

Isaiah 6:10
Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed."

Matthew 13:15 For this people's heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.'

Acts 28:27For this people's heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.'

2 Timothy 4:3
For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.

So, it is not by a mysterious code that my opponent is unable to see. It is by the haughtiness of his own arrogant and stubborn heart. It is my opponent's own prideful disobedience that shuts him off to God's truth. For, in obstinantly clinging to the contention that he alone is the sole judge of God's revealed truth, he has cut himself off from the truth of God.

My opponent is not arguing God alone or The Bible alone, he is truly arguing himself alone. For everyone who interprets God's word differently than he is a "snorting pig". Therefore, God has chosen to give him over to his own willful blindness.

He resorts to such name calling and histrionics out of frustration because, try as he might, he cannot demonstrate the lynchpin of his entire idealogy- the practical sufficiency of scripture.

Bible infallibility and Bible sufficiency are two entirely different doctrines. My opponent believes they are joined at the hip. If the Bible is infallible, it is also sufficient. If the Bible is deemed non-sufficient, it is, by consequence, deemed fallible, so he says..

The argument, of course, is a complete non-sequiter. He is clearly free to believe such a notion but let's understand clearly that believing it and demonstrating it are two very different things.

2 + 2 = 4

That is an infallible statement with regard to mathematics. That is, that the statement is free from error. If, however, I made the claim that that statement was a materially sufficient expression, through which all mathmatical knowledge could be gleaned, you would- at the very least- demand evidence to support such a claim.

Further, if you spoke only Chinese, it is likely that the equation 2 + 2= 4 would mean nothing to you. It's not practically sufficient. That is, it cannot stand on it's own. Someone must teach you it's meaning.

My opponent's contention that the Scriptures are sufficient is wholly unsupported by him. It is a man-made invention.

Further, it is untennable historically.

1) The first Bible was not produced until almost the fifth century and it could not be produced rapidly enough to be brought to the masses until a thousand years after that. Simply stated, if the Scriptures are the one and only revealed truth, than almost all Christians were lost for the first 1500 years of the church.

2) That the protestants accept the New Testament canon set in 384 AD, and ratified by Pope Dmasus, is an assent to Church authority. Otherwise, each protestant would simply assemble his own collection of scriptures. The church chose these specific 27 books out of hundreds of books purporting to be Scripture. Only assent to Church authority could produce an identical NT canon.

3) In addition to the doctrine of Sola Scriptura's being wholly absent from Scripture, it's exercise, as a foundational practice, is absent from all Church history for at least the first Millenium and a half. It appears, out of the blue, some 1500 years after the church was formed, with zero evidence of previous practice.

As a practical matter, as well as a Scriptural matter, Sola Scriptura is completly untenable, unworkable and unsupported. That, my friends, are just the facts.