The defining Question about Sola Scriptura and Tradition

at the 1:03:48 mark:

“Has the Roman Catholic Church infallibly defined a single word of Jesus or an apostle, that is not found in Scripture?”  Dr. James White to Mitch Pacwa

“I cannot think of any.”  Mitch Pacwa

This shows that everything the church needed for ministry was written down in the Scriptures.  That is the clear implication of the verses below; and combined with the early church’s understanding of the rule of faith / apostolic tradition, when it is specifically spelled out, it indicates that everything needed was written down in the NT.

Jude 3 – the faith was once for all delivered to the saints

John 17:7 – Jesus praying to the Father – “the words that You gave Me, I have given to them”

John 14:26 – “when the Holy Spirit comes, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance everything I have told you”

John 16:12-13 – “I have many more things to tell you . . . when the Spirit comes He will lead you into all the truth.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is God-breathed . . . in order that the man of God may be fully equipped for every good work.  Verse 15 is about the OT,  but then verse 16 expands it to include all Scripture, and so this includes by principle, both all OT and NT books, even those not written yet in 67 AD, when 2 Timothy was written.  The fact that 1 Timothy 5:18 has both an OT quote and a NT quote shows that Paul understood this.

1 Timothy 5:18 – both quotes from the OT and NT (Luke 10:7; Matthew 10:10; 1 Corinthians 9:14)) are called Scripture.  Shows Paul understood those NT books written by that time as Scripture.

2 Peter 3:16 – Peter considers all of Paul’s writings as “Scripture”

1 Corinthians 4:6 – “do not go beyond what is written”.  This is Sola Scriptura in principle, even though all the NT Scriptures were not written yet. 1 Corinthians being written around 55 AD.

2 Peter 1:3-4 – God has given us everything we need for life and godliness

(the promises of His word and the Holy Spirit)  And Athanasius seems to be alluding to this by his statement, after listing the 27 NT books, “In these alone (Mono- Greek,  translated into Sola – Latin – alone, “Scripture alone”) is the teaching of godliness”.  That is Sola Scriptura in principle.  (Athanasius, Festal Letter 39, 367 AD)

 

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About Ken Temple

I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I am a sinner who has been saved by the grace of God alone (Ephesians 2:8-9), through faith alone (Galatians 2:16; Romans 3:28; 4:1-16), in Christ alone (John 14:6). But a true faith does not stay alone, it should result in change, fruit, good works, and deeper levels of repentance and hatred of my own sins of selfishness and pride. I am not better than you! I still make mistakes and sin, but the Lord is working on me, conforming me to His character. (Romans 8:28-29; 2 Corinthians 3:16-18) When I do sin, I hate the sin as it is an affront to God, and seek His forgiveness in repentance. (Mark 1:15; 2 Corinthians 7:7-10; Colossians 3:5-16 ) Praise God for His love for sinners (Romans 5:8), shown by the voluntary coming of Christ and His freely laying down His life for us (John 10:18), becoming flesh/human (John 1:1-5; 1:14; Philippians 2:5-8), dying for sins of people from all nations, tribes, and cultures (Revelation 5:9), on the cross, in history, rising from the dead (Romans 10:9-10; Matthew 28, Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24; John 20-21; 1 Corinthians chapter 15). His resurrection from the dead proved that Jesus is the Messiah, the eternal Son of God, the word of God from eternity past; and that He was all the gospels say He was and that He is truth and the life and the way to salvation. (John 14:6)
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8 Responses to The defining Question about Sola Scriptura and Tradition

  1. θ says:

    The “Tradition” to have a head in the church is started in John 21:15, as Jesus appoints Peter among the rest, and also he is called one of pillars (stuloi) of the church in Gal 2:9.
    Succession of hierarchy which God sets in 1Cor 12:28 is infallible. What is infallible is a setting of rank of hierarchy or church’s office by Jehovah. Not a person. It is like a holiness of Temple despite the idolatry of Levite priests and Judah kings, the curse on the house of Eli, and the sacrilege of Jerusalem Temple by Solomon.
    1Cor 12:28
    And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments (Kubernesis), diversities of tongues.

    Historical consideration between Succession and Papacy.
    Firstly, Peter and Paul happened to travel there.
    Secondly, Rome church has a claim which other churches don’t have – regardless whether it is true or deceit – that Peter happens to have transferred his seat (Succession) to several Rome’s bishops till the end of apostleship era in 100 AD (5 Popes: Peter, Linus, Anacletus, Clement I, Evaristus).

    Succession.
    Matthias is selected in order to maintain the Tradition of having a complete twelve “apostles” (Acts 1:26). The seventy “minor” apostles were authorised by Jesus (Luke 10:1). Certain person of the seventy is a prophet (Acts 21:10).
    There are 3 major ranks of hierarchy which Jehovah has set for the church. Apostles, prophets and third position with many subsets including the governments.
    Presbyter is also used for Jewish elders prior to the time of Jesus (Mt 15:2). Deacon is even used for the ruler of Roman empire (Rom 13:4).

    Kubernesis.
    Kubernesis (governments or steering committee of church) is mentioned in 1Cor 12:28. It is a subset of the 3rd rank appointed by God for the church, but based on its real function or structure Kubernesis is actually the head of church. Jehovah doesn’t set the position of Presbyter, deacon, and pastors.

    Pope.
    The use of the title “Father” for the bishops is a norms even in accordance to the Pauline theology. Tertullian in “On Modesty, xiii” uses the word “Pater” for bishops, by stating bluntly “And do you, good shepherd and blessed Father that you are.” Protestants may be unaware if Paul also boasts himself to be a “begetter” of Christians as he says in 1Cor 4:15.
    1 Cor 4:15
    For in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.

    Tertullian, On Modesty, 13.
    And do you, good shepherd and blessed Father that you are, to bring about the (desired) end of the man, grace your harangue with all the allurements of mercy in your power, and under the parable of the ewe go in quest of your goats?

    The fallible Protestants could realise there’s no blame whatsoever to have a word “Pope” for the title of bishops, even it was practiced by Paul. Since the Pope is a bishop, hence he can be called “father” as well.

    Tradition of the early church vs. Tradition of later church:
    – Nobody considers Sunday as new holiday in order to be a Christian.
    – Nobody considers crucifix, rosary, cross hand’s signal, icons, statues, holy water as sacred object, but they used to do the daily breaking of breads from house to house, as well as the mass (praying together while hearing a priest’s sermon).
    – Nobody prays thru Mary, Peter, Paul, or lesser saints in order to be a Christian.
    – Nobody celebrates Christmas in order to be a Christian.

  2. Sam Shamoun says:

    Ken,

    I just posted this on Paul’s blog. It turns the tables against him by proving that even his own god prays. Enjoy!

    While we are at Paul, maybe you can answer the same question about your god. Who does your god Allah pray to when he pray for Muhammad and the believers?

    He it is who prays (yusallee)1 for you and His angels too, to bring you forth out of the darkness into the light, for He is merciful to the believers. S. 33:43 (Edward Henry Palmer, The Qur’an, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1880)

    Palmer has a rather interesting footnote here regarding the Quranic usage of the Arabic word for “prays”, namely salla:

    145:1 The same word is used as is rendered ‘pray’ in ALL THE OTHER PASSAGES in the Qur’ân, though the commentators interpret it here as meaning ‘bless.’ So, too, in the formula which is always used after Mohammed’s name, zalla ’llâhu ‘alâihi wa sallam, ‘may God bless and preserve him!’ is literally, ‘may God PRAY for him and salute him!‘ (Capital emphasis ours)

    Palmer’s comments show that Muslims have no way around the fact that their deity prays much in the same way that creatures like angels do, since the Arabic word used here always means prayer whenever it is used in the Quran.

    Nor is this the only text which states this:

    Verily, God AND His angels PRAY (yusalloona) for the prophet. O ye who believe! PRAY (salloo) for him and salute him with a salutation! S. 33:56 Palmer

    Here we have Allah, his angels and believers praying for Muhammad!

    Even the hadith reports affirm the point of Allah praying along with his creation:

    1387. Abu Umama reported that the Messenger of Allah said, “ALLAH AND His angels AND the people of the heavens AND the earth, EVEN the ants in their rocks AND the fish, PRAY for blessings on those who teach people good.” [at-Tirmidhi] (Aisha Bewley, Riyad as-Salihin (The Meadows of the Righteous), Book of Knowledge, 241. Chapter: the excellence of knowledge; capital and italic emphasis ours)

    And:

    1397. ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘As reported the Messenger of Allah says, “Anyone who says a prayer on me, Allah will PRAY on him ten times on account of it.” [Muslim] (Ibid., 243. Chapter: Book on the Prayer on the Messenger of Allah; italicized and underline emphasis ours)

    Finally:

    2685. Abu Umamah al-Bahili narrated: “Two men were mentioned before the Messenger of Allah. One of them a worshipper, and the other a scholar. So the Messenger of Allah said: ‘The superiority of the scholar over the worshipper is like my superiority over the least of you.’ Then the Messenger of Allah said: ‘Indeed ALLAH, His Angels, the inhabitants of the heavens and the earths – even the ant in his hole, even the fish – SAY SALAT upon the one who teaches the people to do good. (Hasan)

    [Abu ‘Eisa said:] This Hadith is Hasan Gharib Sahih… (English Translation of Jami‘ At-Tirmidhi, Compiled by Imam Hafiz ‘Eisa Mohammad Ibn ‘Eisa At-Tirmidhi, From Hadith no. 2606 to 3290, translated by Abu Khaliyl (USA), ahadith edited and referenced by Hafiz Abu Tahir Zubair ‘Ali Za’i, final review by Islamic Research Section Darussalam [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, First Edition: November 2007], Volume 5, Chapter 19. What Has Been Related About the Superiority Of Fiqh Over Worship, p. 80 – listed as number 70 in the ALIM online version of at-Tirmidhi’s hadith collection; capital emphasis ours)

    Despite the fact that the verbs employed in these specific texts always mean prayer and/or worship every time they appear in both the Quran and ahadith, Muslims still wish to argue that they do not have this meaning when used in reference to Allah. They claim that when salla and its related terms are applied to their deity then they are referring either to Allah’s mercy or his blessings, which he bestows upon his creatures.

    There are two major problems with this assertion. First, the quotes we provided describe Allah joining his creatures in performing salla/salat/salawat. As such, they must carry over the same meaning when they appear in the same context, irrespective of who the subject of these verbs may be. Seeing that no Muslim denies that salla/salat/salawat means prayer/worship when used of angels and the other creatures listed, such as humans and ants, they must therefore be consistent and accept the fact that this same meaning must apply in respect to Allah, who is described as performing this same exact action alongside of these other entities.

    Second, the Islamic sources distinguish the salla/salat/salawat of Allah from both his mercy (rahmah) and blessing (baraka). Notice, for instance, this next verse:

    Upon them rest the prayers and mercy from their Lord (salawatun min rabbihim warahmatun), and those — they are the truly guided. S. 2:157 Our translation

    Contrast this with the following English version:

    They are those on whom are the Salawat (i.e. blessings [sic], etc.) (i.e. who are blessed and will be forgiven) from their Lord, and (they are those who) receive His Mercy, and it is they who are the guided-ones. Hilali-Khan

    Here we have Allah bestowing both his prayers (salawat) and mercy (rahmah) upon believers, showing that they do not have the same meaning.

    Moreover, the hadith literature itself differentiates Allah’s prayer (salah) from his blessing (baraka), as we find in the following cases:

    The Command to say Salah upon the Prophet

    Al-Bukhari said: “Abu Al-`Aliyah said: “Allah’s Salah is His praising him before the angels, and the Salah of the angels is their supplication.” Ibn `Abbas said: “They send blessings.” Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi said: “This was narrated from Sufyan Ath-Thawri and other scholars, who said: `The Salah of the Lord is mercy [sic], and the Salah of the angels is their seeking forgiveness.’” There are Mutawatir Hadiths narrated from the Messenger of Allah commanding us to send blessings on him and how we should say Salah upon him. We will mention as many of them as we can, if Allah wills, and Allah is the One Whose help we seek. In his Tafsir of this Ayah, Al-Bukhari recorded that Ka`b bin `Ujrah said, “It was said, `O Messenger of Allah, with regard to sending Salam upon you, we know about this, but how about Salah?’ He said…

    <>” Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn Abi Layla said that Ka`b bin `Ujrah met him and said, “Shall I not give you a gift? The Messenger of Allah came out to us and we said, `O Messenger of Allah! We know how to send Salam upon you, but how can we send Salah?’ He said…

    <>” This Hadith has been recorded by the Group in their books with different chains of narration. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Q. 33:56; capital emphasis ours)

    Allah sends down both his salah and blessings upon Muhammad and his family. The fact that Muhammad clearly distinguished between the words salah and baraka (“blessing”) proves beyond any reasonable doubt that they have two different meanings. As one Muslim authority candidly admitted:

    Allah makes the merit of His Prophet clear by first praying blessing on Himself, and then by the prayer of the angels, and then by commanding His slaves to pray blessing and peace on him as well. Abu Bakr ibn Furak related that one of the ‘ulama interpreted the words of the Prophet, “The coolness of my eye is in the prayer,” as meaning Allah’s prayer, that of the angels and that of his community in response to Allah’s command until the Day of Rising. The prayer of angels and men is supplication for him and that of Allah is mercy.

    It is said that “they pray” means they invoke blessing (baraka). However, when the Prophet taught people the prayer on himself, he made a distinction between the word salat (prayer) and baraka (blessing). We will return to the meaning of the prayer on him later. (Qadi ‘Iyad Musa al-Yahsubi, Muhammad Messenger of Allah (Ash-Shifa of Qadi ‘Iyad), translated by Aisha Abdarrahman Bewley [Madinah Press, Inverness, Scotland, U.K. 1991; third reprint, paperback], Part One. Allah’s great estimation of the worth of His Prophet expressed in both word and action, Chapter One: Allah’s Praise Of Him And His Great Esteem For Him, Section 8: Concerning Allah instructing His creation to say the prayer on the Prophet, His protecting him and removing the punishment because of him, p. 25)

    And:

    The Prophet made a distinction between salat (prayer) and baraka (blessing) in the hadith in which he taught about making the prayer on him. This indicates that they have two separate meanings. (Ibid., Part Two. Concerning the rights which people owe the Prophet, Chapter Four: The Prayer On The Prophet And Asking Peace For Him, And The Obligation Of Doing It And Its Excellence, Section 1: The meaning of the prayer on the Prophet, p. 250)

    In light of the foregoing, you have no choice but to accept that your god prays and worships much like Muslim do. As such, You must contend with the fact that, according to your own reasoning, Allah cannot be God or divine since in the words of your fellow Muhammadan Jamal Badawi, “God doesn’t pray to God.” You must also come to terms with reality by acknowledging that Allah is limited and finite, and cannot possibly be the greatest conceivable being in existence since, as Badawi reasons, “we pray to a power greater than us,” and “prayer is petition from the finite to the infinite.” Hence, Allah must be a finite being who prays to a power greater than himself.

    You obviously will not accept this as valid reasoning, since you will never admit that Allah cannot be God because he prays (though it is strangely not said, whom he prays to, to himself or another entity). Therefore, we are left with a second option, namely, that your objection is wrong, and praying (to God) does not disprove the divine nature of the one praying. Therefore, your whole attack on the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ crumbles into nothing. If it does not disprove the divinity of Allah, it cannot disprove the Godhood of Jesus either.

  3. θ says:

    Sallu doesn’t mean praying or mercy or blessing or supplication, but the dominance or overcoming of mercy over anger.
    Ibn ‘Asakir, Ahadith Al-Qudsiyyah, Hadith 216:
    The Israelites said to Musa: Does your Lord do salli? Musa said: Fear Allah, O sons of Israel. Allah said: O Musa, What did your people say? Musa said: O my Lord, You already know, they said: Does your Lord do salli? Allah said: Tell them My salli for My servants is that My Mercy should precede My Anger. If it were not so, I would have destroyed them.

    Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah Al-Halabiyya:
    I [Muhammad] said, O Gabriel, does your Lord salli? He said, Yes. I said, What does he say? This is what he says. He says: Glory, holy, Lord of the angels and the Spirit. My mercy overcomes my wrath.

  4. θ says:

    Sallu doesn’t mean praying, or mercy per se, or blessing, or supplication, but precisely the dominance or overcoming of mercy over anger. Derivations of Sallu can be:
    mercy over punishment
    deliverance over abandonment
    guidance over straying
    acceptance over rejection
    easiness over difficulty
    blessing over curse
    forgiveness over sin
    honor over disgrace
    longevity over mortality
    growth over decline
    wisdom over foolishness
    kingdom over slavery
    richness over poverty
    health over illness

  5. The defining Question about sola scriptura and Tradition according to Ken Temple is “Has the Roman Catholic Church infallibly defined a single word of Jesus or an apostle, that is not found in Scripture?” That question was posed to Fr. Mitch Pacwa during a debate on sola scriptura back in 1999. Well, actually, the question is easy to answer. Since the only words we have written from Jesus and the Apostles are found in Scripture – the Church has no need to infallibly declare them for she has already recognized Scripture as the infallible word of God.
    Before I proceed, let me express the definition of sola scriptura as White & Co. define it. I believe I have debated White enough times on this subject to accurately represent his definition, which is this: Sola scriptura is the teaching/belief that the Scriptures Alone are the sole infallible authority for the Christian Church.

    Posted on May 25, 2016 by Ken Temple at the 1:03:48 mark:
    “Has the Roman Catholic Church infallibly defined a single word of Jesus or an apostle, that is not found in Scripture?” Dr. James White to (Fr.) Mitch Pacwa
    “I cannot think of any.” (Fr.) Mitch Pacwa
    This shows that everything the church needed for ministry was written down in the Scriptures.

    sw: Well, no it doesn’t show any such thing! Has the Church defined any words of Jesus or the Apostles not found in Scripture? No, and again, there is no need to for the Church already recognizes Scripture as the infallible word of God. Contained within that question and answer there is nothing to state that “everything the church needed for ministry was written down in the Scriptures.” Mr. Temple is imputing words and thought to that question which simply are not there.

    That is the clear implication of the verses below; and combined with the early church’s understanding of the rule of faith / apostolic tradition, when it is specifically spelled out, it indicates that everything needed was written down in the NT.

    sw: As I have demonstrated above and will below – the conclusion of Temple and White is not supported by the evidence.

    Jude 3 – the faith was once for all delivered to the saints

    sw: “The Faith” was, yes, but this does not say the Scriptures were (and they were not!). Scripture was an on-going/living tradition up through Jesus and the Apostles. Protestants agree with Catholics that the Canon of Sacred Scripture ends with the death of the last Apostle – but we need to remind the reader, not all the books of the New Testament, including two of the Gospels, were written by an Apostle!

    John 17:7 – Jesus praying to the Father – “the words that You gave Me, I have given to them”

    sw: Let us ask Mr. Temple, how many of those words did Jesus Himself write down?

    John 14:26 – “when the Holy Spirit comes, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance everything I have told you”

    sw: And where does this say anything about “all things” being “written?”

    John 16:12-13 – “I have many more things to tell you . . . when the Spirit comes He will lead you into all the truth.”

    sw: And again, where does this say any of that would be “writtne?”

    2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is God-breathed . . . in order that the man of God may be fully equipped for every good work. Verse 15 is about the OT, but then verse 16 expands it to include all Scripture, and so this includes by principle, both all OT and NT books, even those not written yet in 67 AD, when 2 Timothy was written.

    sw: I do not disagree with the statement that “all Scripture is God-breathed,” but again, that does not say Scripture is the sole infallible authority for the Christian Church.

    The fact that 1 Timothy 5:18 has both an OT quote and a NT quote shows that Paul understood this.
    1 Timothy 5:18 – both quotes from the OT and NT (Luke 10:7; Matthew 10:10; 1 Corinthians 9:14) are called Scripture. Shows Paul understood those NT books written by that time as Scripture.

    sw: Again, just because St. Paul recognizes what is Scripture does not bring us to “Scripture is the sole infallible authority for the Christian Church.”

    2 Peter 3:16 – Peter considers all of Paul’s writings as “Scripture”

    sw: And again, same as the previous response – recognition of Scripture cannot be equivocated to a statement of sola scriptura.

    1 Corinthians 4:6 – “do not go beyond what is written”. This is Sola Scriptura in principle, even though all the NT Scriptures were not written yet. 1 Corinthians being written around 55 AD.

    sw: Out of context, that sounds like what some have labelled “solo scriptura” (bad Latin grammar) to mean Scripture is the ONLY source of teaching (which is NOT the definition of sola scriptura adhered to by White & Co.). However, IN context St. Paul is telling them how to judge whether one has been truly given the Gift of Truth to pass on to others. In judging them, do not go beyond that which is written. He then explains WHY they should not go beyond that which is written when judging others – because “Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other.” This really has NOTHING to do with how or why Protestants adhere to sola scriptura.

    2 Peter 1:3-4 – God has given us everything we need for life and godliness

    sw: Fine, but where does this verse say He gave us everything IN WRITING?

    (the promises of His word and the Holy Spirit) And Athanasius seems to be alluding to this by his statement, after listing the 27 NT books, “In these alone (Mono- Greek, translated into Sola – Latin – alone, “Scripture alone”) is the teaching of godliness”. That is Sola Scriptura in principle. (Athanasius, Festal Letter 39, 367 AD)

    sw: Well, again, that is not sola scriptura, not even in principle. “The teaching of godliness” is not a statement that Scripture alone is the sole infallible rule of faith for the Christian Church. Even if it were, a statement from St. Athanasius is not Scripture and thus to use this as an example would be a bit disingenuous in a debate attempting to prove sola scriptura from Scripture alone.

    • Ken Temple says:

      Protestants agree with Catholics that the Canon of Sacred Scripture ends with the death of the last Apostle

      Revelation ended then also. Everything needed was written down. Jude 3 “the faith” implies this; and it seems like one of last, if not the last book written. Jude probably wrote for Peter in 2 Peter, Peter himself dictated the letter to Jude from prison around 66-67, before he was executed by Nero, then Jude wrote Jude later, in 80-96 AD.

      – but we need to remind the reader, not all the books of the New Testament, including two of the Gospels, were written by an Apostle!
      But they were written under/associated with Apostolic authority/approval – for example – Mark is writing for Peter; Luke under Paul’s apostolic authority; Hebrews – I agree with Tertullian (On Modesty 20) that Hebrews was written by Barnabas, – apostolic authority, called an apostle – Acts 14:4, 14:14; James and Jude were half-brothers of Jesus and James is clearly called an apostle in Galatians 1:19 and I Cor. 15:7-9.

      Because the rule of faith/ tradition of the apostles (see the other article; Irenaeus, Tertullian, Origen, Athanasius), when articulated and fleshed out, are doctrinal points that are all the main points of Scripture concerning God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – they form the basis for the creeds, and are all in Scripture, then this shows that there was not other doctrines/practices that are apostolic that are not in Scripture.

      sw: And where does this say anything about “all things” being “written?”
      It is implied, since that is all we have from the apostles, and after they died, there is no more revelation. All we have that we know is from them was written down. To be lead “into all the truth” implies that suceeding generations will have that truth to read and be blessed by. That is why Peter wrote what he wrote in 2 Peter 1:12-19 – “As long as I am in this body, I will be diligent (by writing this letter, see 2 peter 3:1 also), SO THAT you will be able to stir up your sincere minds and remember the truth, even though you are established in the truth.”

      sw: I do not disagree with the statement that “all Scripture is God-breathed,” but again, that does not say Scripture is the sole infallible authority for the Christian Church.

      Because verse 17 indicates that Scripture is “able to make the man of God adequate, sufficient, fully-equipped for every good work” – this points to the sufficiency of Scripture in the church for doctrine, practice, and authority to teach.

    • Ken Temple says:

      1 Corinthians 4:6 – “do not go beyond what is written”. This is Sola Scriptura in principle, even though all the NT Scriptures were not written yet. 1 Corinthians being written around 55 AD.

      sw: Out of context, that sounds like what some have labelled “solo scriptura” (bad Latin grammar) to mean Scripture is the ONLY source of teaching (which is NOT the definition of sola scriptura adhered to by White & Co.). However, IN context St. Paul is telling them how to judge whether one has been truly given the Gift of Truth to pass on to others. In judging them, do not go beyond that which is written. He then explains WHY they should not go beyond that which is written when judging others – because “Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other.” This really has NOTHING to do with how or why Protestants adhere to sola scriptura.

      It is not out of context – the context in chapter 1, 2, 3, and 4 was the disunity in the Corinthian church and some were following Paul, or Peter, or Apollos, or Christ! Why didn’t Paul say – the followers of Pope Peter are right? Because there was no such thing as a Pope or Peter as the final authority of bishop over all other bishops.

      “Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, so that in us you may learn not to exceed what is written,

      so that no one of you will become arrogant in behalf of one against the other.” 1 Cor. 4:6

      Chapter 4 was a continuation of what he is talking about in chapters 1-3.

      “For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men? 4 For when one says, “I am of Paul,” and another, “I am of Apollos,” are you not mere men?
      5 What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one. ( I Cor. 3:3-5)

      “For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you. 12 Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, “I am of Paul,” and “I of Apollos,” and “I of Cephas,” ( Peter) [ if there was such a thing as a Papal office, he should have said, “follow Peter as the infallible bishop over all other bishops”] and “I of Christ.” 13 Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
      1 Corinthians 1:11-13

      So, in 4:6, “do not go beyond what is written” is Sola Scriptura in principle – use the Scriptures to solve those disunity and division and “groupies” / cliques / following a man, problems in the church.

      more response later.

  6. θ says:

    Sola Scriptura is a rebellious invention of the “inspired” Tradition:
    -Language, why is it Greek only? It is decided by Tradition.
    -Year, why is it before 200 AD only? It is decided by Tradition.
    -Number, why is it four only for Gospel? It is decided by Tradition.
    -Author, why is it male only? It is decided by Tradition.
    -Authentication, why is it excluding or dismissing many disciple’s writings and many Paul’s writing as apocrypha? It is decided by Tradition.
    -Genre, why is it excluding or dismissing supplements such as Hermas and Didache? It is decided by Tradition.

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