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Author Topic: Why so much emphasis on the Bible?  (Read 2362 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: August 22, 2013, 09:35:12 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.
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« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2013, 09:50:28 PM »

Perhaps it is helpful to keep in mind:

"Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field: Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof." - Matt. 13:31-32
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« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2013, 10:02:17 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Please make up your mind:

Why do other posters on this board always reference to theology, dogma, or councils and church traditions instead of the Bible? ... Is it because the Orthodox Study bible is oriented to the Calendar approach for the Liturgical year? wondering, thanks.

The Lectionary Approach to the Bible in the Format of A Calendar Year


Why are you asking? Does it bother you?

I am wanting to know why Orthodox Christians do not make references to the Bible...
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« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2013, 10:31:52 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Please make up your mind:

Why do other posters on this board always reference to theology, dogma, or councils and church traditions instead of the Bible? ... Is it because the Orthodox Study bible is oriented to the Calendar approach for the Liturgical year? wondering, thanks.

The Lectionary Approach to the Bible in the Format of A Calendar Year


Why are you asking? Does it bother you?

I am wanting to know why Orthodox Christians do not make references to the Bible...
Considering he has gone from Orthodox to Lutheran to unspecified Christian in the course of one week, I'd say he needs to make up his mind on much more than how much time should be spent reading the Bible.
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« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2013, 11:23:39 AM »

In a conversation with my mom about God and religion she usually makes references to the Bible.

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« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2013, 11:28:33 AM »

In a conversation with my mom about God and religion she usually makes references to the Bible.

So do most of the Church Fathers in the patristic writings. I do think it is a good thing to include in any discussion so long as you are using it in the way that the Church interprets it.
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« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2013, 11:30:36 AM »

Perhaps it is helpful to keep in mind:

"Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field: Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof." - Matt. 13:31-32

The Parables of Jesus Christ in the New Testament.
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« Reply #7 on: August 23, 2013, 11:53:42 AM »

I thought about the "long journey begins with a single step" type saying(s), but somehow quoting the Bible itself seemed more appropriate. The Bible doesn't have to give specific and exhaustive answers to all the questions we could ask, it only has to provide the framework for, and general principles for, answering all questions. So, for example, the Bible doesn't tell you explicitly what to think about internet porn (or any porn as a specific thing), but it gives you plenty of material that provides a foundation for understanding how you should approach the subject. This is the genius thing about humans--we don't just memorize facts and decisions and then recall them when necessary, like a computer; rather, we learn a limited number of facts and make certain decisions, and then can creatively engage with new problems as they pop up. Besides, most people don't bother to read the Bible, how many would read something 10s of thousands of pages?  police
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« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2013, 12:33:05 PM »

1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.
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« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2013, 03:34:44 PM »

I thought about the "long journey begins with a single step" type saying(s), but somehow quoting the Bible itself seemed more appropriate. The Bible doesn't have to give specific and exhaustive answers to all the questions we could ask, it only has to provide the framework for, and general principles for, answering all questions. So, for example, the Bible doesn't tell you explicitly what to think about internet porn (or any porn as a specific thing), but it gives you plenty of material that provides a foundation for understanding how you should approach the subject. This is the genius thing about humans--we don't just memorize facts and decisions and then recall them when necessary, like a computer; rather, we learn a limited number of facts and make certain decisions, and then can creatively engage with new problems as they pop up. Besides, most people don't bother to read the Bible, how many would read something 10s of thousands of pages?  police

Do you mean reading the Bible in a modern context?..
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« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2013, 03:36:09 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Please make up your mind:

Why do other posters on this board always reference to theology, dogma, or councils and church traditions instead of the Bible? ... Is it because the Orthodox Study bible is oriented to the Calendar approach for the Liturgical year? wondering, thanks.

The Lectionary Approach to the Bible in the Format of A Calendar Year


Why are you asking? Does it bother you?

I am wanting to know why Orthodox Christians do not make references to the Bible...

I'll probably lean towards being Orthodox.
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« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2013, 03:21:57 PM »

In terms of what exactly? The absolute need to study it daily? Or the emphasis to the exclusion of the fathers? What are we talking about here exactly.
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« Reply #12 on: August 26, 2013, 07:59:28 AM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Hello, here is my two cents:

1 Peter 4:11 says: If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God.

It is the Lord who gives the Word (Psalm 68:11 – 2 Timothy 2:16) and we speak such oracles when we read and preach the Word of God.

Psalm 119 is particularly clear on the Word; verse 105 it says: Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Verse 107 goes on:  I am afflicted very much: quicken me, O LORD, according unto thy word. Verse 130 says the Word is for the simple to understand: The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple. 

It would seem pretty clear the importance of focusing on the Scriptures. The early fathers clearly did and implored the reader to believe them because what they said is backed by Scripture. I could post an extensive list but here are a few:

“Regarding the things I say, I should supply even the proofs, so I will not seem to rely on my own opinions, but rather, prove them with Scripture, so that the matter will remain certain and steadfast.”

St. John Chrysostom

“Let the inspired Scriptures then be our umpire, and the vote of truth will be given to those whose dogmas are found to agree with the Divine words.”

St Gregory of Nyssa
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« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2013, 07:34:53 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Hello, here is my two cents:

1 Peter 4:11 says: If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God.

It is the Lord who gives the Word (Psalm 68:11 – 2 Timothy 2:16) and we speak such oracles when we read and preach the Word of God.

Psalm 119 is particularly clear on the Word; verse 105 it says: Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Verse 107 goes on:  I am afflicted very much: quicken me, O LORD, according unto thy word. Verse 130 says the Word is for the simple to understand: The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple. 

It would seem pretty clear the importance of focusing on the Scriptures. The early fathers clearly did and implored the reader to believe them because what they said is backed by Scripture. I could post an extensive list but here are a few:

“Regarding the things I say, I should supply even the proofs, so I will not seem to rely on my own opinions, but rather, prove them with Scripture, so that the matter will remain certain and steadfast.”

St. John Chrysostom

“Let the inspired Scriptures then be our umpire, and the vote of truth will be given to those whose dogmas are found to agree with the Divine words.”

St Gregory of Nyssa

The early fathers also went beyond what scripture specifically enumerated, such as the patristic argument for the sign of the cross and other doctrines.
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« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2013, 07:58:09 PM »

Wouldn't it be really cool if everything you really needed to know and believe could be contained in a single volume that you can carry around in one hand? No, it's not realistic, but you can see why it's a very attractive concept.
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« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2013, 08:46:09 PM »

In terms of what exactly? The absolute need to study it daily? Or the emphasis to the exclusion of the fathers? What are we talking about here exactly.

I would be talking about the Bible as some sort of book with a divinity.
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« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2013, 01:41:07 AM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.
Ah to go back to the time of illiteracy and before the printing press.
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« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2013, 07:19:40 PM »

In terms of what exactly? The absolute need to study it daily? Or the emphasis to the exclusion of the fathers? What are we talking about here exactly.

I would be talking about the Bible as some sort of book with a divinity.

Im not sure I understand.
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« Reply #18 on: August 28, 2013, 08:08:53 AM »

Well sometimes I don't make references because I don't rememmber exactly in which place they are in the Bible.
Orthodox mentions a lot of the Bible. Yet we have other writings. Lutherans have sola scriptura.
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« Reply #19 on: August 28, 2013, 06:16:49 PM »

Wouldn't it be really cool if everything you really needed to know and believe could be contained in a single volume that you can carry around in one hand? No, it's not realistic, but you can see why it's a very attractive concept.

The Scriptures don't teach all things about everything but consider these verses:

Deuteronomy 29:29 -The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.

Exodus 24:4-8 - And Moses wrote all the words of the Lord, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel. And he sent young men of the children of Israel, which offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen unto the Lord. And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basons; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient. And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words.

John 20:30-31 - And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.
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« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2013, 06:25:16 PM »

It's interesting that two of the quotes are from the Pentateuch. Obviously much came after that, yet we don't ignore the later stuff, despite what those verses (or ones like Deut. 4:2) say. Of course, the early Christians held to a similar mindset in accepting not only the New Testament, but also apostolic (unwritten) tradition, as well as prizing the continuing creative guidance through the Holy Spirit.
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« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2013, 07:03:38 PM »

It's interesting that two of the quotes are from the Pentateuch. Obviously much came after that, yet we don't ignore the later stuff, despite what those verses (or ones like Deut. 4:2) say. Of course, the early Christians held to a similar mindset in accepting not only the New Testament, but also apostolic (unwritten) tradition, as well as prizing the continuing creative guidance through the Holy Spirit.

Deuteronomy says the things revealed belong to us, certainly more has been revealed by God since then and belong to us. Exodus is about the Old Covenant, John is about the new covenant and says just his Gospel was written so we can believe and have life in Christ. Certainly we should read both the Old and New covenants.



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« Reply #22 on: August 28, 2013, 10:28:06 PM »

Why is so much emphasis placed on the Bible? If it contained everything then it would be a massive volume of 10's of thousands of pages.

Hello, here is my two cents:

1 Peter 4:11 says: If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God.

It is the Lord who gives the Word (Psalm 68:11 – 2 Timothy 2:16) and we speak such oracles when we read and preach the Word of God.

Psalm 119 is particularly clear on the Word; verse 105 it says: Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Verse 107 goes on:  I am afflicted very much: quicken me, O LORD, according unto thy word. Verse 130 says the Word is for the simple to understand: The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple. 

It would seem pretty clear the importance of focusing on the Scriptures. The early fathers clearly did and implored the reader to believe them because what they said is backed by Scripture. I could post an extensive list but here are a few:

“Regarding the things I say, I should supply even the proofs, so I will not seem to rely on my own opinions, but rather, prove them with Scripture, so that the matter will remain certain and steadfast.”

St. John Chrysostom

“Let the inspired Scriptures then be our umpire, and the vote of truth will be given to those whose dogmas are found to agree with the Divine words.”

St Gregory of Nyssa


Scripture, for the Church Fathers, is not synonymous with Bible as there was no such thing.  Even today, for the Divine Liturgy and other offices, the epistle is found in the Apostolos and the Gospel in the Evangelion.  There is no ONE book.

 For the Fathers, the Scriptures included the whole of everything that has been revealed, from the OT and NT (which had only recently been canonized in the time of ST. Gregory of Nyssa) to the writings of the fathers to the prayers and liturgy of the church (lex orandi, lex credendi) to the canons, etc.  If the fathers had subscribed to sola scriptura, then neither St. John Chrysostom nor St. Gregory of Nyssa nor any other father would have defended the use of icons, prayers and intercessions to and through the saints, Trinitarianism, etc.
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« Reply #23 on: August 28, 2013, 10:34:33 PM »

John 20:30-31 - And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

Just like what Luther did with his German rendering of St. Paul's epistle to the Romans 3:28 where he added the German "allein" to create his by faith alone (sola fide; obviously Luther knew better than St. Paul), you are assuming that the phrase "these are written" is meant to be exclusive of anything else that has been handed down and taught that was not strictly written down.  St. John's remarks clearly do not say "give no creedence to those other things," so you supply an "allein" just as Luther did. Lutherans assume that the ancients were a text society as we are which is, of course, plain b.s.  They were an oral society.  I'm not going to get into a history of oral tradition (you can read that on your own; I recommend the late Dr. John Foley's excellent book on that; full disclosure, I was a student of his), but if you knew anything about that (and you don't), you would see that analyzing and reading text from a textual society basis is flawed and incomplete.
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« Reply #24 on: August 28, 2013, 10:49:15 PM »

In terms of what exactly? The absolute need to study it daily? Or the emphasis to the exclusion of the fathers? What are we talking about here exactly.

I would be talking about the Bible as some sort of book with a divinity.
No one teaches this, though I know some Baptists who come close to being name-worshippers with regard to the text itself.

The scriptures get emphasized so much because they are the base texts for all of the major teachings of Christianity. Without the Gospels, we know next to nothing about Jesus.
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« Reply #25 on: August 29, 2013, 06:10:58 AM »

if you knew anything about that (and you don't), you would see that analyzing and reading text from a textual society basis is flawed and incomplete.

So your argument is the verses don’t actually mean what they say. You’re also not willing to actually discuss the verses. That is an unconvincing argument since the Psalms say the word gives understanding to the simple (Psalm 119:130) and Paul says let no one deceive you of the simplicity of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:3). Paul wants know nothing but Christ crucified (1 Corinthians 2:1-2) and John wrote so we may believe and have life (John 30:21). I could go on and on if you would actually like to engage the Scriptures as the Church Fathers did.

John clearly says “These are Written”, it is not complicated nor do I need special training to understand what that means.
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« Reply #26 on: August 29, 2013, 07:57:13 AM »

Because it is a tangible, steadfast, inspired collection of writings which span human history and for the most part (outside translation limitations) hasn't really changed.  Think of it in the same way as the US Constitution.  It doesn't cover everything, but it's always a solid reference source for one to lean upon (unless you aren't from the USA) and it covers enough to build an amazing foundation.
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« Reply #27 on: August 29, 2013, 08:00:06 AM »

John clearly says “These are Written”, it is not complicated nor do I need special training to understand what that means.

Nor do you need special training to see that "these are written" does not preclude the importance of other sources and tradition.
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« Reply #28 on: August 29, 2013, 04:12:19 PM »

if you knew anything about that (and you don't), you would see that analyzing and reading text from a textual society basis is flawed and incomplete.

So your argument is the verses don’t actually mean what they say. You’re also not willing to actually discuss the verses. That is an unconvincing argument since the Psalms say the word gives understanding to the simple (Psalm 119:130) and Paul says let no one deceive you of the simplicity of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:3). Paul wants know nothing but Christ crucified (1 Corinthians 2:1-2) and John wrote so we may believe and have life (John 30:21). I could go on and on if you would actually like to engage the Scriptures as the Church Fathers did.

John clearly says “These are Written”, it is not complicated nor do I need special training to understand what that means.


You obviously didn't read what I wrote.  I noticed that you didn't even bother to respond (probably because you can't) to the first refutation.  But as to the "these are written," I remarked that "these are written" should not be taken as excluding other sources and tradition, which Iconodule did. 

Your quotations and references are part of the whole "allein" state of mind.  Paul only wants us to know Christ crucified?  Then, I guess we better excise all those other writings of his that don't mention that.  I could go on and on as well, but that's pointless.

I will end with this and this is the crux:  If the Scriptures  are for the simple and therefore plainly intelligible, why does Martin Luther expound over 50 volumes on interpreting it for his followers?
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« Reply #29 on: August 29, 2013, 04:59:42 PM »


You obviously didn't read what I wrote.  I noticed that you didn't even bother to respond (probably because you can't) to the first refutation.  But as to the "these are written," I remarked that "these are written" should not be taken as excluding other sources and tradition, which Iconodule did.

I take "These are Written" to mean "These are Written" You are entitled to believe it actually means something else.

Also, nothing really to respond to, there are no quotes from fathers that say tradition trumps Scripture or can contradict Scripture.  You have also not really responded to anything I wrote or any of the verses I posted; you just interrupted the conversation to tell me I’m wrong without explanation other than saying I should read some book.  Here is a small sample of what the Fathers did say about the Scriptures:

The holy and inspired Scriptures are fully sufficient for the proclamation of the truth
St. Athanasius

For concerning the divine and holy mysteries of the Faith, not even a casual statement must be delivered without the Holy Scriptures
St. Cyril of Jerusalem

They say that we are to understand the things concerning Paradise not as they are written but in a different way. But when Scripture wants to teach us something like that, it interprets itself and does not permit the hearer to err.
St. John Chrysostom

We are not content simply because this is the tradition of the Fathers. What is important is that the Fathers followed the meaning of the Scripture.
St. Basil the Great

We have learned from none others the plan of our salvation, than from those through whom the gospel has come down to us, which they did at one time proclaim in public, and, at a later period, by the will of God, handed down to us in the Scriptures, to be the ground and pillar of our faith."
Saint Irenaeus

I can post a whole bunch more if you would like. Now, I keep quoting the fathers opinions on Scripture and Scripture itself and letting it speak for itself.

Quote
If the Scriptures are for the simple and therefore plainly intelligible, why does Martin Luther expound over 50 volumes on interpreting it for his followers?

That’s nothing but a red herring. Scripture is the final authority and tradition can’t contradict Scripture. Doesn’t mean we can only read Scripture. David says the Word gives understanding to the simple, you disagree. Paul says not to be deceived by the simplicity of Christ, you make it complicated. Who should I believe? David and Paul or Scamandrius from the internet?
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« Reply #30 on: September 01, 2013, 05:41:34 AM »


I take "These are Written" to mean "These are Written" You are entitled to believe it actually means something else.

Also, nothing really to respond to, there are no quotes from fathers that say tradition trumps Scripture or can contradict Scripture.  You have also not really responded to anything I wrote or any of the verses I posted; you just interrupted the conversation to tell me I’m wrong without explanation other than saying I should read some book.  Here is a small sample of what the Fathers did say about the Scriptures:

The holy and inspired Scriptures are fully sufficient for the proclamation of the truth
St. Athanasius

For concerning the divine and holy mysteries of the Faith, not even a casual statement must be delivered without the Holy Scriptures
St. Cyril of Jerusalem

They say that we are to understand the things concerning Paradise not as they are written but in a different way. But when Scripture wants to teach us something like that, it interprets itself and does not permit the hearer to err.
St. John Chrysostom

We are not content simply because this is the tradition of the Fathers. What is important is that the Fathers followed the meaning of the Scripture.
St. Basil the Great

We have learned from none others the plan of our salvation, than from those through whom the gospel has come down to us, which they did at one time proclaim in public, and, at a later period, by the will of God, handed down to us in the Scriptures, to be the ground and pillar of our faith."
Saint Irenaeus

I can post a whole bunch more if you would like. Now, I keep quoting the fathers opinions on Scripture and Scripture itself and letting it speak for itself.


You still have not answered why these church fathers did not defend against the use of icons, Theotokos, veneration of saints, liturgical, sacramental worship, clergy orders, monasticism, etc, like most Protestants who believe in sola scriptura do.
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« Reply #31 on: September 01, 2013, 07:40:32 AM »


You still have not answered why these church fathers did not defend against the use of icons, Theotokos, veneration of saints, liturgical, sacramental worship, clergy orders, monasticism, etc, like most Protestants who believe in sola scriptura do.

Some of that is very Biblical, and essential: "Baptism now Saves you" Peter. I have no problems with traditions that don't contradict Scripture. Scripture, however, always trumps tradition.

Galatians 3:26-28 - For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
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« Reply #32 on: September 01, 2013, 07:45:36 AM »

Scripture, however, always trumps tradition.


It is Tradition which gave us scripture. It was the mind of the apostles, passed down to their successors, the bishops, who then sorted through the various writings and documents and came up with the canon of scripture several centuries after the dawn of the Christian era. Or do you believe the Bible fell out of the sky, intact?
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« Reply #33 on: September 01, 2013, 07:52:16 AM »

Scripture, however, always trumps tradition.


It is Tradition which gave us scripture. It was the mind of the apostles, passed down to their successors, the bishops, who then sorted through the various writings and documents and came up with the canon of scripture several centuries after the dawn of the Christian era.
Once I realized this, it was pretty much all over.  I knew I could no longer be a Protestant.
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« Reply #34 on: September 01, 2013, 07:57:46 AM »

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It is Tradition which gave us scripture. It was the mind of the apostles, passed down to their successors, the bishops, who then sorted through the various writings and documents and came up with the canon of scripture several centuries after the dawn of the Christian era. Or do you believe the Bible fell out of the sky, intact?

St. Irenaeus: "When we refer them to that tradition which originates from the apostles, [and] which is preserved by means of the succession of presbyters in the Churches, they object to tradition, saying that they themselves are wiser not merely than the presbyters, but even than the apostles, because they have discovered the unadulterated truth." The NT Scriptures were not even canonized for 4 centuries. Not to mention that the antilegomenon were not even considered Scripture by the majority of the Church for a long time. Martin Luther himself didn't trust the Church's decision to include the antilegomenon and was ready to rip them straight out. He didn't trust the Church's decision on the Deuterocanon either. When the majority of the Church Fathers, save St. Jerome, endorsed the Deuterocanon. Even when St. Jerome included them into the Vulgate anyway.

How can you trust Scripture, but not trust the body that made the Scripture? How is Scripture "inerrant" but the body that made the Scripture is "apostate"? The position you have is similar to the Roman Church's position during the Counter Reformation. The Roman Church said that if it was Hebrew, it was the work of Christ-killers, and if it was in Greek it was the work of heretics. So, you love to use the work of others, but you don't credit them with the work that they did? If the Orthodox Church never existed, there would be no Scripture, no Christianity, and no Reformation.

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« Reply #35 on: September 01, 2013, 12:28:20 PM »


It is Tradition which gave us scripture. It was the mind of the apostles, passed down to their successors, the bishops, who then sorted through the various writings and documents and came up with the canon of scripture several centuries after the dawn of the Christian era. Or do you believe the Bible fell out of the sky, intact?

Do you believe the New Testament canon was decided by the wisdom of man or by the will of God?

Isaiah 55:11
- So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

Daniel 4:35 - And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?

James 1:16-18
- Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.

It’s the Lord who gives the word:

Psalm 68:11 King James Version - The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it.

Psalm 67:12 (68:11) Septuagint – The Lord will give his word to those proclaiming the Gospel with great power

Romans 10:17 - So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Eusebius wrote there were 18 undisputed books that were always recognized. The 4 Gospels, Acts, and Paul’s letters, 1 John and 1 Peter were also universally accepted by the church also.

“Of the disputed books, which are nevertheless familiar to the majority, there are extant the Epistle of James, as it is called; and that of Jude; and the second Epistle of Peter; and those that are called the Second and Third of John”

I’ve never read a Church Father state tradition trumps God’s word. The church fathers clearly defended their positions using Scripture. Now if someone could show me how and why Galatians 3:26-28 is not true, that not all are children of God by faith, that not all who have been baptized have put on Christ and we are not all one in Christ. How is it not true that the word brings understanding unto the simple (Psalm 119:130) and that we are not to be deceived by the simplicity of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:3).

If anyone could show me where I am wrong on these verses, as I interpret them to mean what they simply say, by actually discussing the verses, it would be appreciated.

“We are not content simply because this is the tradition of the Fathers. What is important is that the Fathers followed the meaning of the Scripture.”

St. Basil the Great
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« Reply #36 on: September 01, 2013, 12:35:07 PM »



“Regarding the things I say, I should supply even the proofs, so I will not seem to rely on my own opinions, but rather, prove them with Scripture, so that the matter will remain certain and steadfast.”

St. John Chrysostom

“Let the inspired Scriptures then be our umpire, and the vote of truth will be given to those whose dogmas are found to agree with the Divine words.”

St Gregory of Nyssa

Sts. John chrysostom and Gregory of Nyssa believed in a lot of things that you as a Lutheran do not believe. Were they then bad at interpreting the scriptures? If so, then why do you trust them on Sola Scriptura?

OR.... They didn't believe in Sola Scriptura, because it was not a doctrine that existed in the Patristic era. These quotes probably don't mean what you think they mean.
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« Reply #37 on: September 01, 2013, 09:22:46 PM »


It is Tradition which gave us scripture. It was the mind of the apostles, passed down to their successors, the bishops, who then sorted through the various writings and documents and came up with the canon of scripture several centuries after the dawn of the Christian era. Or do you believe the Bible fell out of the sky, intact?

Do you believe the New Testament canon was decided by the wisdom of man or by the will of God?
Why the false dichotomy?
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« Reply #38 on: September 01, 2013, 09:44:11 PM »


You still have not answered why these church fathers did not defend against the use of icons, Theotokos, veneration of saints, liturgical, sacramental worship, clergy orders, monasticism, etc, like most Protestants who believe in sola scriptura do.

Some of that is very Biblical, and essential: "Baptism now Saves you" Peter. I have no problems with traditions that don't contradict Scripture. Scripture, however, always trumps tradition.

Galatians 3:26-28 - For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
Sacred Tradition doesn't contradict Scripture, since Scripture is part of Sacred Tradition.  Sacred Tradition may, however, contradict how certain people choose to interpret Scripture, but that is not Sacred Tradition's fault.
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« Reply #39 on: September 01, 2013, 10:21:33 PM »


I’ve never read a Church Father state tradition trumps God’s word. The church fathers clearly defended their positions using Scripture.

I've already told you this 100 times, if not more.  Scripture to the church fathers DOES NOT MEAN ONLY BIBLE.  WILL YOU PLEASE GET THAT THROUGH YOUR THICK SKULL?  Scripture refers to the whole of God's revelation, written, unwritten, found in books of the Bible and not, oral traditions, icons, the prayers, the liturgy, etc.. 

By the way, heretics used the Scripture (to you, Bible) to defend their heresies.  Arius used Psalm 109:2 to justify his belief that the Logos was created and therefore not God.  how do you think the Church Fathers refuted him and defended orthodox Christology?  By simply quoting other books?  No, they said that this (i.e. Christ being one essence with the Father) is what the church has always believed for all time and that Arius was the innovator.  The only people who rest their doctrines on Scripture (i.e. Bible) alone are proven heretics.
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« Reply #40 on: September 01, 2013, 11:43:02 PM »


I’ve never read a Church Father state tradition trumps God’s word. The church fathers clearly defended their positions using Scripture.

I've already told you this 100 times, if not more.  Scripture to the church fathers DOES NOT MEAN ONLY BIBLE.  WILL YOU PLEASE GET THAT THROUGH YOUR THICK SKULL?
You're not going to get anything through his thick skull if you keep trying to pound it in there. Wink
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« Reply #41 on: September 02, 2013, 12:12:21 AM »


I’ve never read a Church Father state tradition trumps God’s word. The church fathers clearly defended their positions using Scripture.

I've already told you this 100 times, if not more.  Scripture to the church fathers DOES NOT MEAN ONLY BIBLE.  WILL YOU PLEASE GET THAT THROUGH YOUR THICK SKULL?
You're not going to get anything through his thick skull if you keep trying to pound it in there. Wink

Watch me. Wink
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« Reply #42 on: September 02, 2013, 08:08:43 AM »

No one is going to get through to me until they actually engage what God’s word actually says. Show me a quote from a church father that says their writings trump or are equal to Scripture. The quotes I used from the fathers are very specifically about “Holy Scripture”. Telling me it doesn’t mean what it plainly says without actually engaging the words are utterly unconvincing.

John 20:30-31 - And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

“These are written” is clearly referencing his Gospel, not tradition. See “Not written in THIS book”.  

Galatians 3:26-28 - For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Psalm 119:130 - The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple

2 Corinthians 11:3 - But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ

If someone could actually show me how these verses don’t mean what they clearly say, it would be appreciated.

“we are not entitled to such license, namely, of affirming whatever we please. For we make Sacred Scripture the rule and the norm of every doctrine. Upon that we are obliged to fix our eyes, and we approve only whatever can be brought into harmony with the intent of these writings.”

St. Gregory of Nyssa

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« Reply #43 on: September 02, 2013, 10:19:26 AM »

John 20:30-31 - And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

“These are written” is clearly referencing his Gospel, not tradition. See “Not written in THIS book”.  


So, by your reasoning, we only need the Gospel of John and we can ignore the rest of the scriptures.
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« Reply #44 on: September 02, 2013, 10:37:25 AM »

John 20:30-31 - And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

“These are written” is clearly referencing his Gospel, not tradition. See “Not written in THIS book”.  

You're set in your ways--I understand that. Fine. You're still wrong.

As Iconodule wittily responded, according to you, we only need the Gospel according to St. John.  Everything else should be eliminated from the canon.  Considering that Luther himself was big on pruning the canon, I'm not surprised that you are too.

"These are written" does not, DOES NOT (again, you're in the "allein" mindset where if the words say this, it obviously means to the exclusion of anything else. That's narrow minded, at best) mean exclusion of the traditions, teachings (whatever you may wish to call them) that were NOT written down in the canon or passed down via oral tradition, which is something you refuse acknowledge.  If something is written, that doesn't make it "correct."  That is a MODERN standard, not the ancient one.  Lutherans have a difficult time with that because they think that words like text, writing, literacy mean the same thing in the ancient context as the modern one.  Believe me, I know; I have first hand experience of that. 

Happy Lutheran, you're not winning anyone over and you're just running your mouth and, frankly, you are starting to sound like one of my 7th graders.  Why are you on this board?
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« Reply #45 on: September 02, 2013, 12:11:29 PM »

So, by your reasoning, we only need the Gospel of John and we can ignore the rest of the scriptures.

That is not at all what I implied. John wrote his Gospel so we “may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name”. It’s the believing part so we may have life in Christ that is important. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God”

Hebrews 4:12 - For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

You're set in your ways--I understand that. Fine. You're still wrong.
Happy Lutheran, you're not winning anyone over and you're just running your mouth and, frankly, you are starting to sound like one of my 7th graders.  Why are you on this board?

Yes, it is clear we will not come to agreement. Your insistence to mock and decline to actually address the verses is not convincing.  I have just posted many Scriptures and church fathers quotes and let them speak for themselves; that is running my mouth according to you. This is the Protestant sub-forum; the topic is about the emphasis on the Bible. If I’m not welcome to give my opinion and/or the people and moderators of this site don’t want me to post here anymore, just let me know. 
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« Reply #46 on: September 02, 2013, 12:54:19 PM »

So, by your reasoning, we only need the Gospel of John and we can ignore the rest of the scriptures.

That is not at all what I implied. John wrote his Gospel so we “may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name”. It’s the believing part so we may have life in Christ that is important. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God”

Hebrews 4:12 - For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

You're set in your ways--I understand that. Fine. You're still wrong.
Happy Lutheran, you're not winning anyone over and you're just running your mouth and, frankly, you are starting to sound like one of my 7th graders.  Why are you on this board?

Yes, it is clear we will not come to agreement. Your insistence to mock and decline to actually address the verses is not convincing.  I have just posted many Scriptures and church fathers quotes and let them speak for themselves; that is running my mouth according to you. This is the Protestant sub-forum; the topic is about the emphasis on the Bible. If I’m not welcome to give my opinion and/or the people and moderators of this site don’t want me to post here anymore, just let me know.
In this case, Happy Lutheran, it seems as if your biggest critics are merely talking past you with no real understanding of what you're trying to say. I'm not sure I understand yet what you are trying to say, but it doesn't seem to me that you're using this thread to argue for sola scriptura. The question is why so much emphasis is placed on the Bible. You're citing Fathers who placed a great emphasis on the Bible (a.k.a. Scriptures). What you've cited could just as well be seen as an apologetic for prima scriptura, the primacy of Scripture within Tradition, as an apologetic for sola scriptura. ISTM that scamandrius and Iconodule are merely undermining their own belief in prima scriptura by arguing with you as they have.

The Orthodox do believe in the authority of Tradition, the life of the Holy Spirit within the Church and the life of the Church guided by the Holy Spirit, which gave birth to the Scriptures and guided their canonization. But just about everything you've said about how Scripture has the highest authority within Tradition, how Tradition is based on Scripture, and how Tradition cannot contradict Scripture is something we Orthodox can and should say about our own approach to Scripture.
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« Reply #47 on: September 02, 2013, 01:07:05 PM »

So, by your reasoning, we only need the Gospel of John and we can ignore the rest of the scriptures.

That is not at all what I implied. John wrote his Gospel so we “may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name”. It’s the believing part so we may have life in Christ that is important. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God”

Hebrews 4:12 - For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

You're set in your ways--I understand that. Fine. You're still wrong.
Happy Lutheran, you're not winning anyone over and you're just running your mouth and, frankly, you are starting to sound like one of my 7th graders.  Why are you on this board?

Yes, it is clear we will not come to agreement. Your insistence to mock and decline to actually address the verses is not convincing.  I have just posted many Scriptures and church fathers quotes and let them speak for themselves; that is running my mouth according to you. This is the Protestant sub-forum; the topic is about the emphasis on the Bible. If I’m not welcome to give my opinion and/or the people and moderators of this site don’t want me to post here anymore, just let me know.
In this case, Happy Lutheran, it seems as if your biggest critics are merely talking past you with no real understanding of what you're trying to say. I'm not sure I understand yet what you are trying to say, but it doesn't seem to me that you're using this thread to argue for sola scriptura. The question is why so much emphasis is placed on the Bible. You're citing Fathers who placed a great emphasis on the Bible (a.k.a. Scriptures). What you've cited could just as well be seen as an apologetic for prima scriptura, the primacy of Scripture within Tradition, as an apologetic for sola scriptura. ISTM that scamandrius and Iconodule are merely undermining their own belief in prima scriptura by arguing with you as they have.

The Orthodox do believe in the authority of Tradition, the life of the Holy Spirit within the Church and the life of the Church guided by the Holy Spirit, which gave birth to the Scriptures and guided their canonization. But just about everything you've said about how Scripture has the highest authority within Tradition, how Tradition is based on Scripture, and how Tradition cannot contradict Scripture is something we Orthodox can and should say about our own approach to Scripture.

I concur with PtA here and I would add that many otherwise earnest Orthodox apologists or polemicists online make it seem as if proof texted Patristic snippets somehow are superior to Scripture. Such an approach often leads many Protestants  to come to the wrong understanding of Holy Tradition.
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« Reply #48 on: September 02, 2013, 03:15:55 PM »

So, by your reasoning, we only need the Gospel of John and we can ignore the rest of the scriptures.

That is not at all what I implied.

Your curious interpretation of "these are written" allows for no other implication.
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« Reply #49 on: September 02, 2013, 03:19:10 PM »

ISTM that scamandrius and Iconodule are merely undermining their own belief in prima scriptura by arguing with you as they have.

I don't recall ever expressing a belief in prima scriptura. The whole division between scripture and tradition is erroneous.
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« Reply #50 on: September 02, 2013, 04:26:21 PM »

ISTM that scamandrius and Iconodule are merely undermining their own belief in prima scriptura by arguing with you as they have.

I don't recall ever expressing a belief in prima scriptura. The whole division between scripture and tradition is erroneous.

Neither was I arguing for such thing.

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Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #51 on: September 03, 2013, 01:25:27 PM »

ISTM that scamandrius and Iconodule are merely undermining their own belief in prima scriptura by arguing with you as they have.

I don't recall ever expressing a belief in prima scriptura. The whole division between scripture and tradition is erroneous.

Neither was I arguing for such thing.

+1
Of course not! But you do appear to have misidentified what Happy Lutheran was arguing for, and that was my point.
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