Friday, March 26, 2010

Skip the "Middle Man" as the Middle Man Requested

The Catholic Champion has presented James Swan: Begging the Question on Sola Scriptura.

A few weeks back he put forth Revolutionizing Catholic Apologetics: Cutting Out The Middle Man and also wrote this.

So, shouldn't I simply skip the middle man? Exactly why should I read Matthew's response according to Matthew's own logic? He should just simply point me to which books would be the best response. But wait... that's the middle man pointing me to the best books.

I guess I'm stuck with the middle man is some regard until the magisterium does something, anything.... but their hands are full with lawsuits and allegations this week, so perhaps next week they can work on a good list of resources in response to my comments on sola scriptura.

Since Matthew recommends skipping the middle man, the argumentation I'd use in response to him would be found here. I suggest Matthew purchase this book and get right to the source of my argumentation.

By the way, I'm still hopeful Matthew will provide a list of which "middle men" to avoid. How do we know according to Matthew who qualifies as a "middle man"? Matthew states:

"The best place to start your research is by using faithful, well educated scholars and clergy to compile your material from, as well as the original sources of the Church, Church Fathers and the Saints."

Matthew suggests cutting out the middle men will revolutionize Romanist apologetics. Every revolution requires sacrifice, so let's get started with a list:


Patrick Madrid
Steve Ray
Tim Staples
Karl Keating
Mark Shea
John Martignoni
Matthew Bellisario


I'm willing to sacrifice the insights of these guys. Whom else could we do without?

255 comments:

1 – 200 of 255   Newer›   Newest»
Matthew Bellisario said...

Great way to avoid a logical defense of your invented dogma. You simply have no logical argument for your belief. So sad indeed. Any time you want to formally debate the topic of Sola Scriptura, I am open to it. Your buddy Turretin Fan failed to defend it, maybe you can do better.

No middle man here. Another logical fallacy of a false analogy. Do you see me going around the country charging people to speak at parishes? Once again, rational argumentation is not one of your strengths James, and you know it. I know it must be frustrating to have your logical fallacies shot down so easily. You like to shoot your mouth off on the blogs, but when you are invited to put your arguments to the test you always seem to conveniently disappear! Its probably better that way for your sake. Well, you know where my blog is. If you want to put your money where your mouth is, then try me in a public written debate on the matter and see how well your arguments hold up.

Turretinfan said...

Mr. Bellisario:

Who failed what? Let us let the reader decide.

In fact, that record may help folks like Mr. Swan decide whether it is worth his time to debate you.

- TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

I think everyone knows who won the debate. I have yet to hear of anyone who thinks you successfully defended your affirmative position.

Matthew D. Schultz said...

Bellisario writes,

I think everyone knows who won the debate. I have yet to hear of anyone who thinks you successfully defended your affirmative position.

Unless you've conducted a poll or some similar survey, it's hard to see how you can defend this statement.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"I think everyone knows who won the debate. I have yet to hear of anyone who thinks you successfully defended your affirmative position."

TFan won the debate. Next question?

Rhology said...

MB,
Are you an atheist or something?
Why wouldn't you grant the authority and reliability of the Scripture?

Same problem in you that I've found in DavidW, EO blogger extraordinaire.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Once again Rhology you can't think past your nose. I never said Scripture was not reliable, that has never been the argument. Once you learn to reason logically maybe we can have a fruitful discussion.

James Swan said...

No middle man here. Another logical fallacy of a false analogy. Do you see me going around the country charging people to speak at parishes?

Dear Matthew,

You stated on your blog:

"In regards to my own blog and website, the intention has never been to be an authority of any kind in regards to the Catholic faith, but only a resource that people can use to hopefully become better educated in the Catholic faith. I always try and present my material from reliable sources in an effort to direct you to the credible sources themselves rather than my own opinions."

Explain again how you're not a "middle man"? I say, put up a list of books and Romanist documents of worth, and then shut down your blog.

Matthew Bellisario said...

James, I say try defending your pitiful illogical argument for a change, rather than running when you are challenged. You are defending something that simply only exists in the figment of your crippled imagination. (Sola Scriptura) It doesn't take a an authority of Catholicism to point out where something does not make rational sense. I am not presenting myself an apologist who goes around charging for information on the Catholic faith. If you do not have the common sense to see the difference then I hardly see how you are going to argue your position in favor of Sola Scriptura. Maybe that is why you are a Protestant? You cannot reason something through using sound rational logic. Someone like you would love to see me shut down my blog so your errors wouldn't be exposed for what they are. My blog exists only because of people like you.

Rhology said...

I say try defending your pitiful illogical argument for a change

Right, James, defend the claim that the Scripture is authoritative, inerrant, and inspired by God from the challenge of someone who says he believes the same thing!

Matthew Bellisario said...

Rhology, if you do not understand the argument, then I would suggest removing yourself from the conversation.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"My blog exists only because of people like you."

In other words, Bellisario is a parasite.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, you really shouldn't talk now should you? How many of your posts are dedicated to attacking Catholics and the Catholic Church? It seems you fit the definition of parasite well. Go back to your immoral blog and continue making your bad arguments against the Church. You are of no use here, unless of course you want to debate the issue at hand.

Chuck Williams said...

Steve Hays, shouldn't you be in "Olympic" practice right now or are you done?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Steve, you really shouldn't talk now should you?"

I simply took you at your own word. To judge my your reaction, does this mean you're going back on your word?

"How many of your posts are dedicated to attacking Catholics and the Catholic Church?"

Not to mention all the other topics I blog on.

"It seems you fit the definition of parasite well."

Since I blog on many topics that have nothing to do with Catholic, the definition doesn't fit.

"Go back to your immoral blog and continue making your bad arguments against the Church."

I've never made an argument against the Church. I've only made arguments against your particular denomination.

BTW, calling someone's argument "bad" is not an argument.

"You are of no use here, unless of course you want to debate the issue at hand."

You seem to forget that both you and I are guests here. You're not the gatekeeper of Beggars All. That's for Swan to decice.

steve said...

Chuck Williams said...

"Steve Hays, shouldn't you be in 'Olympic' practice right now or are you done?"

Chuck Williams, are your priests continuing to sodomize underage minors?

James Swan said...

Matthew,

What do you consider God's speech preserved outside of Scripture? Specific would be nice-

Keep in mind. If I quote a Bible verse to you, I can then provide you with the pool (so to speak) from which the verse comes from.

Let's see what you have, or you could continue to insult me. Do whatever you think will best defend Romanism.

Matthew Bellisario said...

One example would be God's speech preserving the proper interpretation of Scripture, and Gd's speech preserving everything concerning God and morality that is not directly addressed in Scripture. Can you prove that God replaced all oral transmission of his Divine Revelation by the written Word alone? This is what you need to prove. The burden falls upon you proving that God no longer transmits His Word orally.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Can you prove that God replaced all oral transmission of his Divine Revelation by the written Word alone? This is what you need to prove. The burden falls upon you proving that God no longer transmits His Word orally."

Can you prove that Benedict XVI isn't an alien from outer space who's simulating humanoid form (a la Invasion of the Body Snatchers)? This is what you need to prove. The burden falls upon you proving that Benedict isn't a little green mensch (cleverly disguised) with a German accent.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, have you taken any courses on logic? It appears not. We know that God's Word was transmitted orally in the early Church. This is clear from the history of the Church and from Christ's action Himself. So it is up to you to prove that God replaced His oral proclamation by the Written Word alone. If you cannot do so you are begging the question, plain and simple. You can come up with all the false analogies you want, but it does not help your fallacious position.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Steve, have you taken any courses on logic? It appears not."

You're very fond of brandishing the word "logic." Unfortunately for you, sprinkling your comments with the word "logic" is a poor substitute for logic. Logic is more than a noun which you insert into every other sentence.

Both the proponent of authoritative, postbiblical oral tradition and the opponent of authoritative, postbiblical oral tradition are making constantive claims. Hence, it's not as if the opponent shoulders the burden of proof while the proponent is absolved of any corresponding burden. At the very least, both sides shoulder a respective burden of proof. But it's actually the proponent who shoulders a higher burden.

One guest says an elephant is in the room while another guest denies an elephant is in the room.

What evidence does the denier require? Simply the absence of a visible, tangible elephant. Of course, through trick mirrors, it's theoretically possible that there really is an elephant in the room, even though no one can make him out.

On the other hand, what evidence does his opponent require? Well, if there's an elephant in the room, then that ought to be observable. The evidence for the presence of an elephant in the room is the manifest presence of an elephant in the room.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"You can come up with all the false analogies you want."

Whether or not that's a false analogy is something you need to argue. Adjectives are poor substitutes for arguments.

"But it does not help your fallacious position."

Calling something "fallacious" doesn't make it fallacious. You're very fond of using logical terms as a shortcut for logical reasoning. You're like a 5-year-old who's very proud of himself because he learned a polysyllabic word.

Matthew Bellisario said...

The elephant in the room that you continue to ignore is that God gave us His Divine Revelation through oral Tradition. God never told us that He was no longer going to discontinue His Oral Word. Quite the contrary. In fact His Written Word tells us that the Oral Word is still valid and will still be carried on along with the His Holy Writ.

Once again your argument fails the logic test. I can prove that God's Oral Word preceded the Written, and I can prove the Oral still carries on by testimony of the Written, and by the existence of the Oral Word as lived and carried on in the Church. I have a beginning premise, and a stated fact in which to base my argument off of, you have no beginning premise, or fact to base yours on. You have only the logical fallacy of begging the question, which wants us all to believe that when God gave us the Holy Writ of the New Testament, that He then ceased to reveal His Word to us by His Oral Word. Your empty rhetoric may work on some, but not on me or with those who have half a brain.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"In fact His Written Word tells us that the Oral Word is still valid and will still be carried on along with the His Holy Writ."

Oh, I see. You admit the perspicuity of Scripture. You know, without recourse to an infallible interpreter, what the Bible tells us.

"I can prove that God's Oral Word preceded the Written."

I can prove that God spoke to Adam long before the church of Rome was instituted. Therefore, the spoken word trumps all popes and councils.

"...and by the existence of the Oral Word as lived and carried on in the Church."

Before you can even try to take that step, you need to prove "the Church."

"Your empty rhetoric may work on some, but not on me or with those who have half a brain."

Does that mean you have more than half a brain or less than half a brain?

BTW, which half, or quarter, of a brain (as the case may be) do you have?

And is this a congenital condition of yours, or was it due to some unfortunately accident?

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Oh, I see. You admit the perspicuity of Scripture. You know, without recourse to an infallible interpreter, what the Bible tells us."

God and His Oral Word is the infallible interpreter.

"I can prove that God spoke to Adam long before the church of Rome was instituted. Therefore, the spoken word trumps all popes and councils."

His Oral and Written Word guides the Councils. Nice try here to create two opposing authorities that only exists in your imagination.

"Before you can even try to take that step, you need to prove "the Church."

Jesus did that.

Once again you have failed to prove your premise. Prove that God discontinued the proclamation of His oral Word. You cannot. I can prove that Jesus proclaimed His Gospel by oral proclamation and the apostles continued to proclaim it orally. God's Word is on my side, not yours.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"God and His Oral Word is the infallible interpreter."

No, you don't get off the hook that easily. You said: "In fact His Written Word tells us that the Oral Word is still valid and will still be carried on along with the His Holy Writ."

So you were alluding to one or more passages of Scripture which you take to prove your point. Therefore, you need quote your source(s) for the infallible interpretation of your prooftexts.

"His Oral and Written Word guides the Councils. Nice try here to create two opposing authorities that only exists in your imagination."

You appealed to chronological priority. Very well then. God's word to Adam antedates the institution of Roman church by many centuries. So who needs the church?

"Jesus did that."

Which you also need to prove. What is your source of information?

It can't be what Jesus said about the church in the Gospels inasmuch as you reject sola Scriptura.

It can't be the church fathers inasmuch as their classification as church fathers presupposes "the Church." No church, no church fathers.

It can't be the church itself inasmuch as the very question at issue is the identification of the church.

So this is yet another example in which you flaunt logical rhetoric, but the moment you're challenged you resort to hollow slogans. You need to stop bluffing and start producing real arguments.

steve said...

" I can prove that Jesus proclaimed His Gospel by oral proclamation and the apostles continued to proclaim it orally. God's Word is on my side, not yours."

I can prove that Jesus went barefoot and the apostles continued to go barefoot. The onus lies on you to justify the papal slippers.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, once again your false analogies do not help your case. Again I ask, prove to us that God discontinued His Oral Word after the New Testament was written. If you can't prove that point your argument is a logical fallacy.

1. Jesus spoke his Gospel, prove that he did anything other than that. You cannot. Jesus never wrote one Word, He spoke it.

2. The New Testament attests to God's Oral Word as still being carried on. St. Paul says this, 1 Cor 11:1-2, 2 Thes, 2:14,fora couple of examples.

3. We know that this the proper interpretation because that is what the Church interpreted these passages as meaning by its testimony throughout the ages. We do not go by Steve Hay's private interpretation.

4. Jesus clearly established one Church in the NT, not many. Matt 16.

5. God's Written Word never tells us that the Oral was done away with. You have to prove that, not assume it. We don't take your word for it Steve, who are you? You are nothing more than a man promoting all sorts of immoral acts on your blog. Why should we believe you?

6. Once again, the Catholic Church and the Church Councils have never proclaimed themselves to be above God's Word. That is another assumption that you made, which we will dismiss right away as a false statement.

Once again Steve, this how a rational argument works. I have facts that prove that God's Oral Word was procalimed by Jesus, it was never done away with and it continued on to guide God's people throughout the ages.

You however have nothing more than a set of logical fallacies to base your argument on. Again, prove that God removed His Oral Word from mankind. Scripture doesn't tell us anything of the sort. So far it is nothing more than a figment of your imagination.

By the way, your Adam argument is absurd because as you should know, Jesus Christ came to the world to give new Divine Revelation, by His Oral proclamation, which is what we are discussing here in case you forgot that part, so we must start this argument with Jesus and the Word He spoke on this earth, not with Adam. Another logical mistake by you. They are really starting to add up.

steve said...

Let's run through some of Bellisario's silly claims.

"The New Testament attests to God's Oral Word as still being carried on. St. Paul says this, 1 Cor 11:1-2, 2 Thes, 2:14,fora couple of examples."

I notice that you didn't cite any infallible Catholic sources to vouch for your interpretation.

Does this mean think 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14 perspicuously teach what you claim they teach?

"We know that this the proper interpretation because that is what the Church interpreted these passages as meaning by its testimony throughout the ages."

i) Infallible testimony? Or fallible testimony? What's your source? An ex cathedra pronouncement of the pope?

ii) You can't appeal to the church until you first identify the true church.

iii) You're also assuming, without benefit of the argument, that if your denomination interprets a verse a certain way, then that's the proper interpretation.

"Jesus clearly established one Church in the NT, not many. Matt 16."

i) Do you think Mt 16 perspicuously teaches that?

ii) Modern Catholic Bible scholars don't assume that the words attributed to Jesus in the Gospels were actually spoken by him.

iii) Mt 16 doesn't say anything about the 21C church of Rome. Or the church of Rome generally.

iv) Protestants like me don't deny that there is one church. What we deny is an equipollent relation between the one true church and one particular denomination.

"Who are you?"

Who is Bellisario? Is he the pope? Is he a cardinal? Is he an archibishop? Is he a bishop? Is he even a priest? Is he a Catholic theologian at the Gregorian? No. He's just a squeaky little wannabe who presumes to speak for his denomination.

"Once again, the Catholic Church and the Church Councils have never proclaimed themselves to be above God's Word."

If they presume to dictate what the Bible means, then that puts them above God's Word.

"By the way, your Adam argument is absurd..."

Naturally, since it was a reductio ad absurdum of your argument from relative chronology.

For somebody who prides himself on logic and rationality, you're not very acute. Perhaps you should spend less time genuflecting before pretty pictures and spend more time learning how to think.

I could discuss some of your other silly statements, but let's hammer a few loose nails at a time.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"I notice that you didn't cite any infallible Catholic sources to vouch for your interpretation."

Read Trent, that is infallible, Next.

"Does this mean think 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14 perspicuously teach what you claim they teach?"

Yes, who said otherwise? God's Oral Word tells us what it means.

"Infallible testimony? Or fallible testimony? What's your source? An ex cathedra pronouncement of the pope?"

Infallible as taught by the Church. It is apparent that you do not understand how the Church teaches infallibly. It doesn't have to be an ex-catherdra statement by the pope. I thought you understood Catholicism?


"If they presume to dictate what the Bible means, then that puts them above God's Word."

Oh really? Then where does that put you? In the same position, above God's Word I am afraid. You obviously have no ability to reason anything through before you write. The fact is the Councils are not above God's Word, they only submit to it as it is proclaimed orally and in written form. Just as 2 Thes tells us.

Once again I ask you for the 4th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word? Tell us Steve, you seem to be avoiding the question. We all want an answer. Until you answer that without using the logical fallacy of begging the question, then I am finished here. I have proof that Jesus proclaimed His Oral Word before the NT ever came to be. It is up to you to prove that Jesus completely replaced it with the NT. Otherwise there is no reason to believe that it was ever taken away. We are all awaiting the great logician to tell us all when God revealed this event to you.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Read Trent, that is infallible, Next."

No, not next. You have a bad habit of cutting corners at key parts of your argument. You need to acquire some intellectual discipline and intellectual honesty.

i) To begin with, from the Catholic theologians I've read, not everything an ecumenical council says is infallible. For example, the canons maybe infallible, but that doesn't make everything else infallible.

ii) Where does Trent provide the infallible interpretation of 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14?

"Yes, who said otherwise? God's Oral Word tells us what it means."

i) Illogical response. If you admit those verses perspicuously teach what you claim, then we don't need oral tradition to tell us what they mean.

ii) And you have yet to document what infallible oral tradition gives us the correct interpretation of your prooftexts.

"Infallible as taught by the Church."

You need to document the specific source of your claim. Once again, you keep taking shortcuts at key junctures of your argument.

"It doesn't have to be an ex-catherdra statement by the pope."

I never said it did. It's incumbent on you, not me, to specify the source. If it's not an ex cathedra statement, then what is the specific source for the infallible interpretation of 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14?

"Oh really? Then where does that put you? In the same position, above God's Word I am afraid."

I don't dictate the meaning of Scripture. Rather, I use exegetical arguments. Are you too dim to know the difference?

"Just as 2 Thes tells us."

So you admit that 2 Thes is perspicuous. In that event, we don't need oral tradition to tell us what it means. Thanks for your concession to sola Scriptura.

"Until you answer that without using the logical fallacy of begging the question, then I am finished here."

You're bowing out of the debate because you couldn't defend your claims.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, once again for the 5th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word? Tell us Steve, you seem to be avoiding the question. We all want an answer. Until you answer that without using the logical fallacy of begging the question, then I am finished here. I have proof that Jesus proclaimed His Oral Word before the NT ever came to be. It is up to you to prove that Jesus completely replaced it with the NT. Otherwise there is no reason to believe that it was ever taken away. We are all awaiting the great logician to tell us all when God revealed this event to you. Are you going to answer or dodge the question. The burden of proof is on you.

Do you deny that Jesus gave His Divine Revelation by Oral proclamation? If not where does Jesus tell us that the NT replaced His oral Word. Are you going to answer the question or hide for it like the coward you are?

Matthew Bellisario said...

"I don't dictate the meaning of Scripture. Rather, I use exegetical arguments. Are you too dim to know the difference?"

A fancy way of telling us that you are going to interpret the text for us. You are refuting your own claims.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Illogical response. If you admit those verses perspicuously teach what you claim, then we don't need oral tradition to tell us what they mean.'

Wrong again, God determines what His Word means by what Jesus preached, not by what you think it means. Sorry, you missed the argument completely.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Infallible as taught by the Church."

Yes, like the infallible statements and canons of the Ecumenical church Councils, for example, 'If anyone rejects all ecclesiastical tradition either written or not written...let him be anathema.' Council of Nicea II, (A.D. 787).

Matthew Bellisario said...

In case you forgot the original question, Steve, again for the 6th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word? Tell us Steve, you seem to be avoiding the question. We all want an answer.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Do you deny that Jesus gave His Divine Revelation by Oral proclamation?"

For someone who brags about his mastery of logic, you're oddly deficient in your knowledge of argumentation.

I'm not arguing on my own grounds right now. Do you need to have that explained to you?

Rather, I'm arguing on your grounds. How do you know that Jesus gave his revelation by oral proclamation? Did you get that from the Gospels?

If you're appealing to the Gospels, then your appeal is no better than your private interpretation–unless you can cite infallible interpretations to corroborate your claim.

The alternative is for you to concede the perspicuity of Scripture.

"A fancy way of telling us that you are going to interpret the text for us. You are refuting your own claims."

You seem to lack what it takes to draw rudimentary distinctions. No, I'm not going to interpret the text for you. Rather, I present an exegetical argument for my interpretation. Unlike Catholicism, that is not an appeal to authority. Rather, that's an appeal to reason and evidence. Try to learn the difference.

"Wrong again, God determines what His Word means by what Jesus preached, not by what you think it means. Sorry, you missed the argument completely."

And how do you know what Jesus meant? Are the Gospels perspicuous?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Yes, like the infallible statements and canons of the Ecumenical church Councils."

In your opinion, which statements of which councils give the infallible interpretation of 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14?

BTW, what is your infallible criterion to distinguish fallible from infallible conciliar statements?

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, again for the 7th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word? Are you going to answer or not? If not your argument is nothing other than the logical fallacy of begging the question.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"n your opinion, which statements of which councils give the infallible interpretation of 1 Cor 11:1-2 and 2 Thes 2:14?

First off it is not my interpretation. There are many times the Church has solemnly defined the text of 2 Thess for example as referring to God's oral and written Word. The 7th Ecumenical Council, and the solemn proclamation of Pope Paul VI in Dei Verbum, just to name two. Now enough of me answering your questions, for the 8th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word? Are you going to answer or not? If not your argument is nothing other than the logical fallacy of begging the question. I've answered your questions, time for you to answer mine.

James Swan said...

Who is Bellisario? Is he the pope? Is he a cardinal? Is he an archibishop? Is he a bishop? Is he even a priest? Is he a Catholic theologian at the Gregorian? No. He's just a squeaky little wannabe who presumes to speak for his denomination.

"Middle man"- the very term Matthew argues against applies. As I watch Matthew bark up and down this blog, I can't help but wonder why. He should simply point out the best Papal sources that respond to all this, rather than giving us his own personal interpretations of Romanism.

But then again, even when he sought the help of Sungenis some time back, Sungenis sided with me. He lists Sungenis as a non-middle man here:

http://catholicchampion.blogspot.com/2010/03/beef-up-your-catholic-apologetics.html

Matthew Bellisario said...

Hey James how about answering the question. Where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word?

James Swan said...

Matthew said:
Do you deny that Jesus gave His Divine Revelation by Oral proclamation?

Sola Scriptura has never denied that God's truth has been oral at times. Consider this statement:

"it is generally admitted that the most sacred record of this revelation is to be found in the Holy Scriptures. But it cannot be denied that when the apostles were delivering to men that divine revelation with which they were charged, they delivered it by word of mouth as well as in the writings that have come down to us, and that they first delivered it orally, and afterwards penned the writings they have left us. The question, then, for our determination is this, Whether we have any record or witness of their oral teaching, such as can be received by us as a divine revelation supplementary to, and interpretative of, the writings they have left us."

Source:http://www.archive.org/stream/a583271701gooduoft/a583271701gooduoft_djvu.txt

So Matthew, you would do well to read up on sola scriptura via this source.

Is Matthew arguing for special revelation statements made by the Biblical authors not written down within the pages of the Canon, and carried on via Tradition? If so, what are they? For instance, John Hardon (perhaps a non-middle man) writes:

"Sacred Tradition is the unwritten word of God that the prophets and apostles received through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and, under his guidance, the Church has handed on to the Christian world."

So then the question is: where's the beef? Let's see this stuff. Let's see something else Paul, Jesus, or Peter said not recorded in Scripture.

Is Matthew arguing for special revelation statements that are too vague to nail down? Is his argument nothing more than Papal jello? Like, "this is the interpretation of this verse" and it's God's voice handed down through Tradition? Remember, Trent declined to define any such list of Sacred Tradition. Congar points out it is impossible in most cases to prove any of the so-called "Traditions" can be proved to apostolic. If this is the case, point out which interpretations Paul or Jesus had of Scripture not written down and passed on orally.

Is Matthew arguing God's voice is now being put forth via the Infallible Magisterium? In which case, he's arguing against Classic Romanism, which often argued the content of God's revelation was delivered by the apostles and prophets, and he's admitting the possibility of forthcoming new revelation- not at all given by the apostles and prophets, handed down through oral tradition.

Finally, Matthew's basic argument isn't even Matthew's argument. It's the argument of Robert Sungenis. Sungenis states,

"it is precisely at this point that we must turn the tables and insist that it is this apologist who must prove his assertion that all revelation was eventually confined to Scripture"

Sungenis though argues using biblical passages to support the idea that God's revelation was not all confined to Scripture. He does though appear to be arguing the deposit was given and is not now being given. That is, God's revelation was once dropped off in Scripture and Oral Tradition, and not being given afresh today.

The question then becomes, produce this "Tradition." I don't mean give me one example, give me the goods. If I quote a verse, I can then provide someone with a Bible. If someone quotes an alleged Tradition, produce the body from which it came.

Matthew Bellisario said...

No the question becomes, prove that Jesus stopped His Oral proclamation of the Gospel. Prove that the NT replaced it. I am still waiting for an answer. You are not going to get away with this type of illogical argumentation. Prove your premise. The fact is, you cannot.

James Swan said...

Matthew,

I readily admit that in the future, God's word will be quite oral on this planet, so I don't believe God word will at all be limited to Scripture on this planet when viewed in the light of eternity. So in that sense, God has not forever done away with his "oral word."

On the other hand, Keating argues thus:

It is true that Catholics do not think revelation ended with what is in the New Testament. They believe, though, that it ended with the death of the last apostle. The part of revelation that was not committed to writing- the part that is outside the New Testament and is the oral teaching that is the basis of Tradition- that part of revelation Catholics also accept .

So, where's the beef Matthew? Throw it all up on the table, and let's get a good look at it.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Again, w are not talking about new revelation after the apostles. We are talking about the Revelation the Jesus gave us by His oral Word and whether or not the written Word, the NT, completely replaced it. If the written completely replaced the oral, then where did Jesus tell you that fact? Again, can you answer the question posed to you, and not invent new arguments please.

James Swan said...

You are not going to get away with this type of illogical argumentation. Prove your premise. The fact is, you cannot.

Matthew, if you've got it, prove it. If God has more to say and I'm missing it, it's your Romanist duty to provide it. I'm a Sheep, I listen for the shepherd's voice.

Is Keating wrong-

"It is true that Catholics do not think revelation ended with what is in the New Testament. They believe, though, that it ended with the death of the last apostle."

If revelation ended with the last apostle, and you've got the stuff not written down in Scripture, please, I love God's word, so give me the rest of it.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Again, w are not talking about new revelation after the apostles. We are talking about the Revelation the Jesus gave us by His oral Word and whether or not the written Word, the NT, completely replaced it. If the written completely replaced the oral, then where did Jesus tell you that fact? Again, can you answer the question posed to you, and not invent new arguments please.

James Swan said...

If the written completely replaced the oral, then where did Jesus tell you that fact?

John says

"Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name (John 20:30-31)."

That of which John wrote was for a purpose: that one may believe Jesus is the Christ and Son of God. He doesn't say the rest was left as infallible Tradition so that one may believe Jesus is the Christ and Son of God.

James Swan said...

Something I wrote a while back:

Are John 20:30 and 21:25 solid scriptural proofs for authoritative non-biblical oral tradition? Catholic apologetic works never provide evidence of any other things Jesus did later handed down via infallible Tradition. They cannot produce extra-biblical information on any miracle Jesus performed or teaching imparted. John asserts, if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books that would be written. Exactly how much of this content and depth of detail of this content does the Roman Catholic Church have? If Scripture + Tradition = a complete rule of faith, one must press the Catholic use of these verses to provide that complete rule of faith. It appears the Catholic position must borrow capital from the Protestant position. Protestants hold a sufficient authority does not need to be exhaustive in every detail. By implication, the Catholic must also adhere to this, unless they can provide the complete content mentioned in John 21:25.

James Swan said...

A present for Matthew (I forgot about this one)

http://www.aomin.org/aoblog/index.php?itemid=3319

Matthew Bellisario said...

Saint Paul also says, "Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle."

You are avoiding the question again. Answer it. Where does Jesus say that now all of His Word would be in written form only? The quote you gave from St. Paul does not prove that point. It seems that you are not going to answer the question. You keep trying to change the question, that is not the same as answering it.

James Swan said...

Saint Paul also says, "Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle."

The Catholic assumption in 2 Thessalonians 2:15 is that the unwritten traditions referred to are different than those which were written. Such cannot be proven from this verse. The Catholic must be pressed to prove that both categories contain different information. 2 Thessalonians 2:14 speaks of the gospel, not doctrines like papal infallibility, indulgences, or the assumption of Mary. If these Traditions indeed exist, the act of producing them should be an easy task. However, Rome's apologists can only point to highly debatable vague inferences from Scripture on such doctrines, further impaired by any lack of infallible biblical definition from the papacy. Note what Paul says in 2 Thessalonians 2:5, after writing on the man of lawlessness, Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things? The content being told matched that being written.

Those Roman Catholics using 2 Thessalonians 2:15 whose views imply partim-partim must be pressed to produce what they claim to have. If they claim the use of church history as that which provides proof for their particular extra-biblical dogmas, let these peculiar dogmas be traced through two thousand years of history. Such dogmas like the assumption of Mary and papal infallibility find their journey back through the pages of history meet dead ends long before they arrive in the first century.

Turretinfan said...

I see that Steve Hays and James Swan are already taking the time to dismantle Bellisario's arguments. I've submitted my own two cents on my own blog.

- TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

"The Catholic assumption in 2 Thessalonians 2:15 is that the unwritten traditions referred to are different than those which were written."

Obviously St. Paul thinks so. Sorry that argument doesn't fly.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin, you are doing the very same thing. Begging the question. You have not proven that Jesus discontinued His Oral Word. It is an erroneous assumption based purely on speculation. It is amazing how all of you are going to avoid the question and turn it around by begging the question over and over again. If this is the best you guys have, it isn't much to worry about.

Rhology said...

OK, Matthew. Defend your view of inspiration of the Scr and its ultimate source w/o begging the question.

Your response will show you how much you understand your own assertion.

Turretinfan said...

MB:

You use "begging the question" like one Sicilian used "inconceivable." It's meaning doesn't quite align with your usage.

In view of the concessions that have already been extracted from you by the other participants, I've added a short addendum (link).

Your repeated requests for proof that [x] isn't there is just so much bluster for the fact that you can't demonstrate that [x] is there.

In this case, [x] is oral tradition. You can't prove it exists, so you want to change the topic to something that doesn't make your position look so much like you just loudly insisting you're right.

It's an interesting tactic, but we see through it.

-TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

"Obviously St. Paul thinks so. Sorry that argument doesn't fly."

Assertions that one's mind-reading of the Apostle Paul is "obvious" never fly. No apology is required.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin, once again can you prove that Jesus Christ stopped His Oral proclamation of the Gospel and replaced it completely with the Written? Yes or no is all that is needed.

James Swan said...

Matthew,

I've got a large sum of money for you. I can't tell you how much, or where exactly it is, but it's been passed on through generations in my family. Actually, they've told me about it, I've never seen it, but they say my great great great Grandfather mentioned that he had money in the bank and elsewhere as well. The bank money is mine, but the "elsewhere" is yours for the taking.

I can give you though a penny to prove it exists, as to how much more it is and when you're going to get it, that I can't tell you because I don't know. I can only tell you that I have money in the bank, and I've been told of the great Swan fortune. It's the fortune I want you to have.

Ariel said...

"Where does Jesus say that now all of His Word would be in written form only?"

The burden of proof isn't on the Protestant to demonstrate that Jesus restricted that which is theopneustos to scripture alone...you're the one who has to prove that there is another God-breathed authority.

Now, I'm not a Protestant, but your argument is essentially flawed on so many levels.

Turretinfan said...

"Turretin, once again can you prove that Jesus Christ stopped His Oral proclamation of the Gospel and replaced it completely with the Written? Yes or no is all that is needed."

Yes.

Turretinfan said...

I win. Notice that Bellisario said that "yes" (or no) was all that was needed. By his standards, I may now retire in victory. Of course, we haven't clarified what I meant by responding "yes" to his ambiguously worded question ... but we'll have to wait and see if he admits he was defeated.

Matthew Bellisario said...

OK we are all waiting for the proof. You all do not decide has the burden of proof. It logically falls upon the person who is trying to promote their view. You are saying the Jesus told you that His Written Word absolutely replaced His Oral Word. You have to prove that, not assume it. Sorry, i have not seen any proof, only begging the question.

Turretinfan said...

"OK we are all waiting for the proof."

I didn't really believe you when you said "yes" was enough. I've given you enough proof at the two links above. Further proof may be had thus:

Isaiah 40:8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.

Yet any oral word outside of Scripture has been lost (you're welcome to try to prove otherwise). Consequently, that Isaiah 40:8 may be fulfilled, it is plain that the oral word was replaced by the written word, which has indeed been providentially preserved.

That's not the limit of the proof that can be offered. Much much more can be provided, if necessary.

"You all do not decide has the burden of proof."

We're just appealing to fundamental principles of reasoning. If you want to claim that your church possesses oral tradition, the burden of demonstration is on you.

"It logically falls upon the person who is trying to promote their view."

Ah - so you are not trying to promote your views? That's what you'd like us to believe?

"You are saying the Jesus told you that His Written Word absolutely replaced His Oral Word."

How about, I'll say the things I say, not you.

"You have to prove that, not assume it."

I don't *have* to prove it, though I have proven it above (and could supply additional proof).

"Sorry, i have not seen any proof, only begging the question."

Your failure to see the proof is not equivalent to an absence of proof.

- TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

Are you serious? You think that Isaiah 40:8 proves your point? Are you joking or are serious?

Turretinfan said...

By the way, I anticipate the response that "any oral word outside of Scripture has been lost" is an example of "begging the question."

Nevertheless, it is not reasonable for Bellisario to expect me to prove the non-existence of something. If he wants to prove its existence, by all means let him do so.

But it is clear from his barrage of comments above that he lacks either ability or intention to do so.

-TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

Bellisario:

Did you think that Augustine was joking when he wrote:

For holy Scripture speaks in this wise: 'All flesh is grass, and the glory of man is as the flower of grass. The grass withers, the flower thereof falls away; but the word of the Lord endures for ever.' Consequently, if any man longs for true rest and true felicity, he ought to lift his hope off things which are mortal and transitory, and fix it on the word of the Lord; so that, cleaving to that which endures for ever, he may himself together with it endure for ever.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Steve, again for the 7th time, where did Jesus tell you that the New Testament replaced, and did away with His Oral Word?"

Notice Bellisario's repeated and ironic reliance on *documentary* evidence to make his case for oral tradition. How does he try to prove oral tradition? Why...by citing a text.

Even if, for the sake of argument, we granted his interpretation, his appeal is self-defeating since he must reply on the written word to make his case for the spoken word.

Obviously, the spoken word had to be committed to writing for Bellisario to lodge this appeal. Unless the spoken word was written down for posterity, he would have no evidence for oral tradition–even if his fallible interpretation were correct.

And, of course, oral transmission is not equivalent to oral tradition, in the sense of Sacred Tradition. Bellisario is playing a bait-and-switch game.

Constantine said...

Hey Guys,

How about this excellent use of the English language from “the Champ”?

First of all Swan makes just as bad of an argument as the one he is opposing, assuming that Scripture alone is the sole rule of faith.

What is that? Failing third grade grammar? “just as bad of an argument”.

Why should anybody give credence to his undying appeal to logic when he can’t even use the language?

But His Emminence, the Lord of Language, contradicts his own Magisterium:

Holiness Bellisario:
it must be acknowledged that God's voice, (Word or Divine Revelation) was carried by oral Tradition.

Yves Cardinal Congar:

To imagine that the Church, at a given moment in its history, could hold as of a faith a point which had no statable support in Scripture, would amount to thinking that an article of faith could exist without bearing any relation to the centre of revelation, and thus attributing to the Church and its magisterium a gift equivalent to the charism of revelation, unless we postulate, gratuitously, the existence of an esoteric oral apostolic tradition, for which there exists no evidence whatsoever.

The Magisterium says “no evidence whatsoever”. But the probably don’t have “as good of an argument” as His Worshipfulness.

Peace.

steve said...

BTW, I think the onus lies on Bellisario to disprove the existence of leprechauns on the sunny side of Mercury. It's begging the question to presume their nonexistence. Every square inch of Mercury must be explored.

P. S. Bring lots of bottled water.

Constantine said...

Why do Catholics always start at the end of the Bible and forget the Old Testament? When they do that they necessarily miss the God’s meaning.

Bellisario:
We also know that before the New Testament Scriptures were [sic] (n)ever written, or even contained among the Christian communities, it must be acknowledged that God's voice, (Word or Divine Revelation) was carried by oral Tradition.

Part of the New Testament is Christ’s affirmation of “every jot and tittle” of the Old Testament. (Matthew 5:17-21). And we only know that from the WRITTEN Scriptures. (“jots and tittles’ by the way, are PRINTING terms, not oral terms.) So did Jesus miss something that Bellisario knows?

And what did these Scriptures, affirmed by Christ Himself, have to say?

Deut 28:58. If you don’t carefully follow all the words of this law, “which are written in this book”, God will curse you.

Deut 30:9-10. : The LORD will again delight in you and make you prosperous, just as he delighted in your fathers, if you obey the LORD your God and keep his commands and decrees that are WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK OF THE LAW and turn to the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Joshua 23:6: "Be very strong; be careful to obey all that is WRITTEN IN THE BOOK OF THE LAW of Moses, without turning aside to the right or to the left.” (Oral Tradition is turning to the right or the left.)


Speaking through the prophet Jeremiah, God the Father says, “"This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'WRITE IN A BOOK all the words I have spoken to you.” Jer. 30:2.

God will prove you a liar by your oral tradition:

Proverbs 30:6. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.

So the Bishop of Bombast misses the fact that God the Father wills His word to be transmitted in writing and the God the Son affirms every – and He means EVERY – jot and tittle of what His Heavenly Father says. And Bellisario fails to realize the extreme gravity of his position in that it requires the curse of God on all who follow it (see again, Deut. 28:58).

So Bellisario has to tell us why he has “as good of an argument” as Christ for adding to His words.

Peace.

Adam said...

Hey Everyone!

This is the single worst argument I have ever heard from Roman Catholics. The Roman Catholic anachronistically assumes that, when he sees the word of God being spoken of orally, it refers to oral Roman Catholic tradition. That must be demonstrated, not assumed.

The Roman Catholic will then come back and say, "You need to prove that what they spoke is found in scripture." The answer is, "Absolutely not." The text simply may not tell us what the exact content of the oral statements are, and thus, we have to rely on which position, whether the Protestant or Roman Catholic, is right in order to determine the extent of what was spoken orally.

Also, no one denies that we speak the scriptures orally today. We believe that God's word is passed down in both a written form [the scriptures] and an oral form [preaching and ministry]. However, in order for the Roman Catholic to use these passages about the oral word, he must show that what was preached is different from what is found in scripture. I am more than happy to say that these passages, by themselves, are inconclusive. They don't prove one way or the other, because no one can show, from the context, what the contents of those statements were.

God Bless,
Adam

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Can someone help me out here?

Matthew Bellisario said...

Read Trent, that is infallible, Next.

The fact is the Councils are not above God's Word, they only submit to it as it is proclaimed orally and in written form. Just as 2 Thes tells us.


Just wondering...if Trent is infallible, why would it be necessary that it submit to God's Word? Am I missing something?

Constantine said...

Hey Adam.

I don’t think the preaching of the Word is what Catholics refer to as “oral tradition”. If that were the case, there would not be any argument.

What the Catechism says is, “As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, "does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence.” (Para 82).

So “Tradition” exists independently of Scripture and is used, allegedly, to interpret Scripture.

When you write, “We believe that God's word is passed down in both a written form [the scriptures] and an oral form [preaching and ministry]” You are stating the Catholic position. We – Protestants – certainly don’t believe that God’s word is “passed down” orally otherwise we would contradict the very notion of Sola Scriptura. We certainly do believe, affirm and require that God’s written word be orally proclaimed but that does not equal “passing down”.

When you further write, “However, in order for the Roman Catholic to use these passages about the oral word, he must show that what was preached is different from what is found in scripture”, I say “bravo”! He must also show that it does not contradict Scripture, can objectively be identified as ‘”tradition”, is necessary for the Church and could not be revealed in the days of the Apostles.

Your write, again, “I am more than happy to say that these passages, by themselves, are inconclusive. They don't prove one way or the other, because no one can show, from the context, what the contents of those statements were.”

What passages are you referring to?

Peace.

Dozie said...

"Just wondering...if Trent is infallible, why would it be necessary that it submit to God's Word?"

How Protestant defenders think!!! Unbelievably scandalous.

Adam said...

Constantine,

I understand that Rome does not see it as the preaching of scripture and the scriptures themselves. That is how I as a protestant understand the oral proclaimation of the word of God.

My point is that you are not going to settle the issue by going to passages that talk of the word of God being proclaimed orally, but leave off what was actually taught. Pointing to texts that merely say that there was a transmission of the word of God in oral form says nothing of the contents of what was passed down in oral form, which is what is in dispute.

Hence, the passages I am referring to are passages which tell us that the word of God was passed down orally, but give no hint of what was spoken. For example, if a text says something like, "Paul preached to the multitudes, and they repented and believed," about all both sides could be certain of is that the gospel was preached, but if anything else was preached, we would have no clue, since the text doesn't go there.

That is why I said that the issue of Sola Scriptura vs. Sola Ecclesia must be settled before one can determine the limits for the possibilities of what was taught orally in those passages. One cannot bring those kinds of assumptions to the text in order to prove Sola Scriptura or Sola Ecclesia.

I don't think we really differ to much, Constantine. What I understand as "passed down" is simply the what I would argue the Biblical meaning of "tradition" is. If someone is in a situation where they need the ministering of the word, I can quote the text of scripture from memory, and minister the word of God that way. I don't have to go find a Bible and have them read it aloud.

We are called in scripture to orally proclaim the truths of God that are found only in scripture, and we are also commanded to read the scriptures. Both are important, the most important example of the former being expository preaching.

God Bless,
Adam

Pilgrimsarbour said...

I always wanted to be scandalous. But unbelievably! That's more than I could have hoped for!

Now, anyone else care to answer my question, which is based on statements a Roman Catholic made right here in this combox?

Constantine said...

Hey Adam,

Thanks much for the clarification.

God bless you, too, my friend!

Peace.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin writes, "Did you think that Augustine was joking when he wrote:

For holy Scripture speaks in this wise: 'All flesh is grass, and the glory of man is as the flower of grass. The grass withers, the flower thereof falls away; but the word of the Lord endures for ever.' Consequently, if any man longs for true rest and true felicity, he ought to lift his hope off things which are mortal and transitory, and fix it on the word of the Lord; so that, cleaving to that which endures for ever, he may himself together with it endure for ever."

First of all that quote proves nothing in reference to your argument. Secondly, are you appealing to Scripture or to St. Augustine as your authority?

Andrew said...

Matthew,

The quote from Augustine clearly refers to scripture. Also, T-Fan, like Steve, was simply arguing on your grounds in order to demonstrate the flacid nature of your position. He cited Augustine. Isn't he supposed to be one of yours?

Matthew Bellisario said...

Andrew, I thought Scripture was clear? Why quote another authority? I am letting Scripture speak for itself. It says nothing of what TF says it does. Of course neither does St. Augustine, but that is beside the point.

Rhology said...

I thought Scripture was clear?

External critique. Of course Scr is clear, but not when you are deliberately dense. Perhaps MB missed the biblical arguments already in the post.


Why quote another authority?

B/c TF (apparently wrongly) assumed that you have a non-disingenuous interest in what early church authorities, such as Augustine, thought about things. When you reject such obvious statements on their part, it's part of the internal critique of RCC - even RCs don't believe what RCC teaches. You'd think MB has never heard the term "internal critique" before.

Matthew Bellisario said...

You nor Turretin should be concerned about early church authorities. only Scripture is your authority, correct? And the quote has nothing to do with the argument. Or are you too dense to see that? You all are bunch of losers who can't put a single coherent argument together between your entire group. Hays failed, then Swan failed, and then Turretin failed. How many more of you monkeys are gonna jump of the football? What a joke.

Turretinfan said...

Bellisario,

So, are you calling Augustine a monkey too? Between the two of you, I think I can pick out the one behaving in simian fashion.

By the way, I noticed that you had no answer to the argument.

Since, however, you seem to be an insulting mood, I wonder what you think of this use of the text:

These words of the saintly martyr and bishop afford comfort, encouragement, and a shield of strength - especially since they cannot maintain communication with the Holy See (or cannot easily do so) and are in serious peril, since they must surmount many obstacles and deceits. Those in such a plight should rely upon God's help, which they must never cease to implore in humble prayer. They must remember that all who persecute the Church - as history shows - have passed like shadows, but the sun of God's truth never sets, because "the word of the Lord endures forever."

-TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

I guess, in fairness, I should let you know who you will be calling a monkey this time. That is "Pope" Pius XII in Meminisse Iuvat, at 2 (here it is).

But by all means, if you must mock him too, do so. I've got nothing invested in making Pius XII look good.

Or just make another claim like "that quote proves nothing in reference to your argument," which simply helps folks see that you don't understand the argument.

- TurretinFan

Matthew D. Schultz said...

Bellisario writes:

You all are bunch of losers who can't put a single coherent argument together between your entire group.

Here's a better characterization of the major players in this debate:

James Swan, the Eagle Scout.

TurretinFan, the Philosopher.

Steve Hays, the Kung-Fu Master.

Matthew Bellisario, Ferrous Cranus.

Matthew Bellisario said...

TF said, "By the way, I noticed that you had no answer to the argument."

The fact that is going over your pointy head is that you have no argument. Cutting and pasting quotes does not equate to an argument. You actually have to do some work, and actually put something coherent together. Quoting a Scripture passage that is not even related to the argument equates to nothing more than another logical fallacy. The Scripture passage says nothing about the Written Word replacing the Oral, nor does the quote from St. Augustine. Cutting and pasting something and then telling everyone that it proves your point, when noting in the text proves the point is like the Emperor and his new clothes. If you keep telling enough ignorant people, then maybe they will believe it!

Adam said...

Matthew,

I am letting Scripture speak for itself.

Nonsense. Please demonstrate exegetically that any of these passages talking about the word of God being spoken orally has anything to do with the Bodily Assumption of Mary or her Queenly Corination. The idea that the Bodily Assumption and the Queenly corination are related to anything in scripture is pure anachronism.

God Bless,
Adam

Matthew Bellisario said...

Shultz, the better picture to use to represent your little crew of clowns here is,

http://www.politicsforum.org/images/flame_warriors/flame_79.php

Andrew said...

MB said:
"Andrew, I thought Scripture was clear? Why quote another authority?"

Matthew, you are smarter than that. Steve and TF are arguing on your grounds. That's why TF used the Augustine quote. Unless I have misunderstood TF's use of the quote myself. He can correct me if I'm wrong.

Then MB said:
"I am letting Scripture speak for itself."

Tsk, tsk, Mr. Bellisario. As a faithful Roman Catholic you should know better than to presume to understand scripture by simply "letting scripture speak for itself". We're allowed to do that. You aren't. Only "The Church" can do that. Maybe you should take RCIA again.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"I am letting Scripture speak for itself."

So Bellisario is now a crypto-Protestant.

Turretinfan said...

"The fact that is going over your pointy head is that you have no argument."

There are two possibilities: I've presented an argument, or I haven't. In this case, the evidence (above) is that I did present an argument, and you didn't answer it in any meaningful way (though you did respond to it in several non-meaningful ways - dismissal, mockery, insults, and so on).

"Cutting and pasting quotes does not equate to an argument."

Quotations are evidence in support of an argument. Try to follow what's going on.

"You actually have to do some work, and actually put something coherent together."

This is great - a labour theory of argument. It's not an argument unless it was difficult to make! And since this response of yours clearly took less than 30 minutes, it must have much less value than one mine that took hours and hours.

"Quoting a Scripture passage that is not even related to the argument equates to nothing more than another logical fallacy."

Just claiming that it "is not even related to the argument" is just dismissal. It's not an argument.

"The Scripture passage says nothing about the Written Word replacing the Oral, nor does the quote from St. Augustine."

a) I didn't claim they did.

b) Pointing out that they don't do something that I didn't claim they did is called the fallacy of the straw man.

"Cutting and pasting something and then telling everyone that it proves your point, when noting in the text proves the point is like the Emperor and his new clothes."

Straw man again, see the explanation above.

"If you keep telling enough ignorant people, then maybe they will believe it!"

This just falls in the category of insult like so much of the rest of your comment.

- TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve says, "So Bellisario is now a crypto-Protestant."

No, I am holding you to your own standards which you are arguing for. You need to stick to your own rules if you are going convince someone else to use them, and win your argument. Using Catholic Tradition to prove your that there is no Tradition, is well, self refuting.

Turretinfan said...

"Using Catholic Tradition to prove your that there is no Tradition, is well, self refuting."

It's a demonstration that "Catholic Tradition" is self-defeating.

Furthermore, as you know, "Catholic Tradition" allegedly includes Scripture.

- TurretinFan

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"No, I am holding you to your own standards which you are arguing for. You need to stick to your own rules if you are going convince someone else to use them, and win your argument."

i) In other words, you now admit that your Biblical prooftexts for oral tradition don't actually prove your contention. You merely cited them for the sake of argument.

But if even a Catholic epologist like yourself has to concede that they fail to prove Sacred Tradition, then why in the world should a Protestant like me think they prove something which you yourself deny?

If, on the other hand, this isn't merely a tu quoque argument on your part–if, in fact, you think your Biblical prooftexts for oral tradition really prove oral tradition, then your appeal is dependant on the perspicuity of Scripture. So you've backed yourself into a dilemma. Whichever horn you seize, you will be self-impaled.

ii) As far as "my own rules" are concerned, your appeal to "oral tradition" is patently equivocal. To begin with, oral transmission isn't the same thing as oral tradition. In addition, you've done nothing to establish the specific content of Sacred Tradition from your threadbare appeals to the spoken Word. It's just a cipher.

iii) In addition, when, 2000 years down the pike, you must take resource in written sources to attest the existence of oral sources, that undermines your argument since, absent the written sources, you'd have no evidence for oral sources. So all you've demonstrated is the inadequacy of oral transmission (or oral tradition).

That, of itself, is an argument for sola Scriptura. Thanks for proving my point.

"Using Catholic Tradition to prove your that there is no Tradition, is well, self refuting."

I'm not the one who's been using Catholic Tradition in this thread. So you're becoming discombobulated.

However, your objection is simple-minded. Yes, it's possible to cite tradition to refute tradition. The purpose of the citation is not to refute the bare existence of tradition.

Rather, one could cite tradition to expose inconsistencies between one church father and another (or pope or council). Or inconsistencies between early tradition and late tradition.

Turretinfan said...

"bunch of losers"

"monkeys"

"little crew of clowns"

At some point item 5 will presumably come into play.

However, it would be nice to see how many different ways MB tries to avoid actually responding to the various points that Swan, Hays, myself and others have provided.

In my case, remember, the argument is:

1) God will preserve his Word (with Scripture proof that God will, which Bellisario is unable to address);

2) Any Oral Word besides Scripture wasn't preserved;

3) But the Written Word was preserved; and therefore

The Written Word replaced the Oral Word (with lots of qualifications on what constitutes the "Oral Word").

QED

I should note, of course, that Bellisario is free to try to actually prove that the "Oral Word" was preserved. History is totally against him on that point, but he could always try.

If he could show that the "Oral Word" were preserved, that would undermine this particular argument, though it would still fall short of showing what Bellisario really needs, which is to show that the "Oral Word" is equally authoritative with the Written Word.

-TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

Steve Hays's points (ii) and (iii) above are especially good. It's worth noting that I've been responding to Bellisario's vague demand on the vague terms he's supplied. That's one reason that my responses have looked a little different from Mr. Hays'.

Someone above asked why I quoted Augustine. One reason is that I know Bellisario's penchant for insulting those whose answers he can't rebut. (see examples above) I figure he may at least blush to insult Augustine and Pius XII. We'll have to wait and see, though. Anything is possible.

-TurretinFan

Adam said...

Matthew,

No, I am holding you to your own standards which you are arguing for.

Well, then please do so. Trust me, no one here at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School would ever except such anachronistic exegesis of those passages.

I should also note that Roman Catholics play this game with language, but, unbelievably, are upset when you misinterpret their words! I don't know why since, we must need a magisterium to tell us what Roman Catholics are saying to us, according to their logic! Since there is no magisterium to infallibly interpret their words, we will never be able to accurately understand what they have to say, apparently.

At this point, Roman Catholic argumentation destroys all meaning in language. Thus, it has more in common with Derrida or an extreme form of Platonic views of language [given their beliefs in the magisterium as an infallible interpreter] than it does from the Hebrew and Ancient Near Eastern views of language.

God Bless,
Adam

James Swan said...

You all are bunch of losers who can't put a single coherent argument together between your entire group. Hays failed, then Swan failed, and then Turretin failed. How many more of you monkeys are gonna jump of the football? What a joke.

Matthew,

Simply provide the extra Biblical apostolic words you claim exist. If important revelation was left out of the Bible, wouldn't you simply want to get this over with by showing us what and where it is, and how you know it's Apostolic? If there is significant Apostolic truth concerning faith and morals preserved elsewhere, show us this body of truth. I don't understand why asking you such a question proves one is a "loser" or a "monkey".

I reviewed your method of argument via a book by Robert Sungenis, and I was curious if you came up with it yourself, or if you took it from him, or someone else.

Sungenis argues (using Scripture as the authority!) to prove that extra Biblical Apostolic oral Tradition is in the possession of the church. He uses the typical Biblical proof texts, some of which you've mentioned. He provides only one example of a so called missing piece or revelation from the Bible, and even that example though isn't proven to be what he claims, it's merely asserted.

Sungenis claims that it is those who claim "all revelation was eventually confined to Scripture" which have the burden of truth. I don't see how this follows at all, nor do Protestants argue as he suggests. We argue:

"Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name (John 20:30-31)."

John says he wrote down what he wrote down "so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name." He wrote down what we needed, did he not? Where does he say that there are other things Jesus did not written down "so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name" that will be transmitted orally?

It doesn't follow at all that I have the burden of proof. The burden of proof falls on those who claim that there are oral things from the apostles and Jesus that are needed "so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name."

If you have these "oral" things, I think you actually have a moral responsibility to share them. If you have the very word of God elsewhere beyond the pages of Scripture "that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name", and someone asks you for it, and you refuse to provide it, I wouldn't want to have that sin on my soul. I would be willing to bet it's a very serious sin.

Andrew said...

Oh James, you're just being silly. Now let's all go get drunk, engage in indescribable acts of immorality, and worship Martin Luther. C'mon, you know you want to.

Matthew Bellisario said...

James writes, "John says he wrote down what he wrote down "so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name." He wrote down what we needed, did he not?"

How does that passage prove that there is no other Divine Revelation outside of Scripture? All the passage says is that John wrote down what was needed to believe that Jesus is the Son of God. He did not say that what he wrote was all of Divine Revelation that was given to him by Jesus does it?

Saint Paul says that we must follow God's Word, which he says he is passing on to his followers, whether it is written or spoken. It is up to you to prove that what Saint Paul said was false, or that he meant something entirely different than what his words say taken at face value. Also just because something is recorded in Scripture does not automatically make Scripture the sole authority given by God, since Scripture itself is attesting to an authority outside of its own text. The Written Word is a testimony to some of what was spoken orally.

Finally you seem to have a mistaken idea of what Tradition is, as if it is a written document. It would not be Oral Tradition if it was all written down now would it? How do decide if something is moral or not if Scripture does not address it directly? Or, how do address moral issues if you think Scripture does not address a particular subject, despite what your forefathers like Calvin saw in Scripture such as the sins of impurity or contraception, which you now reject?

Tradition is much more than Scripture in an Oral form, as if the Word of God was just a set of rules. It is the Holy Spirit living and breathing in the Church. It is God Himself making sure that His Word is able to be communicated and understood infallibly by those who are willing to listen. Hence Tradition is needed to determine what is moral and what is not, and it is needed to determine the proper understanding of His Word.

Without God's Oral Word we have the problem you have. John Calvin said explicitly that God's Written Word condemned contraception and self abuse as being an abomination. But now, all those who call themselves Calvinists for the most part reject what Calvin said was so very clear in Scripture. Who is to decide which interpretation is correct? God decides; that is what the Catholic Church says, and He decides through the Oral Word of God living in the Church.

Matthew Bellisario said...

You want a list of things that God revealed through His Oral Word?

1. God's Oral Words says that in-vitro fertilization is immoral.

2. God's Oral Word tell us that abortion is wrong under any circumstances.

3. God's Oral Word tells us that the Blessed Mother was assumed into heaven.

4. God's Oral Word tells us that the Blessed Mother was immaculately conceived.

5. God's Oral Word infallibly interprets and defines Mathew 16:18 as Jesus giving the unifying authority of His church to the office of Saint Peter.

6. God's Oral Word interprets Gen 38 as condemning contraception and self abuse. It keeps the interpretation consistent throughout the ages of the Church, which you Calvinism has obviously not been able to do without God's Oral Word.

Is this the kind of list you want James?

Andrew said...

Matthew said:

"Saint Paul says that we must follow God's Word, which he says he is passing on to his followers, whether it is written or spoken."

Okay Matthew. Where is it? Where can I find the spoken word and how do I know that it is apostolic in nature? Oh, and why should I believe that Paul wasn't just refering to the previous 14 verses when he spoke of "traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter"?(2Thess2:15) In context that seems to be his meaning. As in "hey guys, I told you this stuff already; and now I'm writing you this letter to remind you."

Andrew said...

1. "God's Oral Words says that in-vitro fertilization is immoral."

Is that an apostolic teaching? How can I know that?

2. "God's Oral Word tell us that abortion is wrong under any circumstances."

Actually, the written word tells us "You shall not murder". I think that should suffice.

3. "God's Oral Word tells us that the Blessed Mother was assumed into heaven."

Is that an apostolic teaching? How can I know that?


4. "God's Oral Word tells us that the Blessed Mother was immaculately conceived."

Is that an apostolic teaching? How can I know that?


5. "God's Oral Word infallibly interprets and defines Mathew 16:18 as Jesus giving the unifying authority of His church to the office of Saint Peter."

Really? Why was there no singular bishop in Rome until the middle of the second century?

6. God's Oral Word interprets Gen 38 as condemning contraception and self abuse. It keeps the interpretation consistent throughout the ages of the Church, which you Calvinism has obviously not been able to do without God's Oral Word.

Are you assuming the necessity of the "oral word" here? Isn't that what remains to be proven? I have another question. Where in the written word are we told that we need the "oral word" in order to interpret the written? If I read the written word first, without the oral to guide me, how could I hope to rightly interpret the place(s) (assuming it exists) that points me to the thing I need to understand the passage that points me to the thing I need?

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Is that an apostolic teaching? How can I know that?"

That is the point, God knows that this issue did not exist in the apostolic times, and He reveals the moral truth about it to us through the authority He gave us in His Oral Word through the Church.

"Actually, the written word tells us "You shall not murder". I think that should suffice."

Actually you should go tell your Protestant brothers and sister this since many of your kind allow abortion under certain circumstances. They are not interpreting murder as you do. God's Oral Word interprets in infallibly every time!

"Is that an apostolic teaching? How can I know that?"

Yes, it is revealed by God's Oral Word by the testimony of those there when she died as her body was no longer among them.

"Really? Why was there no singular bishop in Rome until the middle of the second century?"

Were you there? Then how do you know there was no singular bishop in Rome until the middle of the second century? Who have you been reading? Where are your sources? I can name just as many history scholars who say there was a bishop there from the time of St. Peter as you can that says there was not. Again, listen to God's Oral Word, not your own personal opinions.

"Are you assuming the necessity of the "oral word" here? Isn't that what remains to be proven?"

The fact is that the Catholic Church has maintained the proper and consistent interpretation on this passage since the Church began, and your religion has not. God's Oral Word is what teaches us the truth about contraception and self abuse. Calvin said it was clear in genesis 38. Are you saying it is not?

"Where in the written word are we told that we need the "oral word" in order to interpret the written?"

Do I need to go through and list the passages again? Please, this is getting old Andrew.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"God's Oral Words says that in-vitro fertilization is immoral."

Of course, that technology didn't exist in the 1C. So how could there be an oral tradition going back to the Apostles regarding in-vitro fertilization?

Bellisario is tacitly redefining oral tradition as continuous revelation. He's not appealing to a once-for-all-time deposit of faith. Rather, he acts as though his church is receiving new revelations.

Indeed, his position commits him to a series of theological innovations throughout church history.

bkaycee said...

Bad move MB. Isn't it better (for recruiting purposes) to talk about "Tradition" in the flowery, romantic but meaningless terms, such as, "Fullness of the faith" or "living tradition" or my favorite, "The One true church".

Actually elaborting on "tradition" and these empty but romantically attractive phrases, takes some of the mystery out of it for all those drawn by the solemn pageantry/show and the old mysterious sights and smells.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve said, "Of course, that technology didn't exist in the 1C. So how could there be an oral tradition going back to the Apostles regarding in-vitro fertilization?

Bellisario is tacitly redefining oral tradition as continuous revelation. He's not appealing to a once-for-all-time deposit of faith. Rather, he acts as though his church is receiving new revelations."

Wrong again. It is not "new" revelation. It is a more complete understanding of revelation based on what was already given in apostolic times. You are mistaken to think that God's Word is not a living Word which is able to communicate to the Church here and now with all of the modern circumstances surrounding the Church today. That is why you are so morally bankrupt in endorsing self abuse and the like. You do not understand the difference between expounding on God's Divine revelation by God speaking through His Oral Word, and creating a new doctrine. You do not seem to understand this very well. You made an erroneous conclusion based on incomplete knowledge of the subject in which you are speaking.

Turretinfan said...

Bellisario said: "You want a list of things that God revealed through His Oral Word?"

When did God allegedly reveal this?

Only recently, according to Bellisario.

But Bellisario wants to insist that there is no new revelation.

Which one is it, Belliario? No new revelation - or lots of new revelation.

- TurretinFan

Andrew said...

MB said:
"That is the point, God knows that this issue did not exist in the apostolic times, and He reveals the moral truth about it to us through the authority He gave us in His Oral Word through the Church."

All that does is assume what you are trying to demonstrate. I say "is that apostolic and how can I know" and you say, in essence, "he revealed it through the Church". That's nice and all, but it begs, rather than answers the question.

MB: "Actually you should go tell your Protestant brothers and sister this since many of your kind allow abortion under certain circumstances. They are not interpreting murder as you do. God's Oral Word interprets in infallibly every time!"

Is disobedience toward a standard of authority a sign that the authority in question is either illigitimate or insufficient? You may want to be careful with your answer here.

MB: "Yes, it is revealed by God's Oral Word by the testimony of those there when she died as her body was no longer among them."

Great! Now which one of them passed it on orally and how do you know?

MB: "Were you there? Then how do you know there was no singular bishop in Rome until the middle of the second century?"

No I wasn't. Neither were you. I know because the historical sources I have read (Catholic and Protestant authors alike) say that. For example: "A Concise History of The Catholic Church" by Thomas Bokenkotter. He's a Catholic priest, and was a teacher at Xavier university. Since he's part of your infallible magesterium I think I'll take his word over yours.

MB: "I can name just as many history scholars who say there was a bishop there from the time of St. Peter as you can that says there was not."

I never said there wasn't a bishop. There wasn't a singular bishop. It was not, in the words of J.N.D. Kelly "a monarchical episcopate". Find me one person that can not only say, but demonstrate, unequivocally that there was one bishop in Rome who was ruling as pope from the time of Peter on. Do that and I'll go to Rome and kiss the Pope's ring myself. We can discuss what my terms are for an unequivocal demonstration of that in another forum if you like.

MB: "Again, listen to God's Oral Word, not your own personal opinions."

The question is like a woman who just isn't interested in having a date with you. You can keep begging her, but you'll never get what you want.

MB: "The fact is that the Catholic Church has maintained the proper and consistent interpretation on this passage since the Church began, and your religion has not."

More question begging.

MB: "Do I need to go through and list the passages again? Please, this is getting old Andrew."

Your passages have been addressed. Do you have any that actually teach what you say? And why would you put yourself in the untenable position of having to rely on the insufficient written word for proof of the "oral word"?

You are right about one thing. This is getting old; but I don't think you have managed to put your finger on why.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"All that does is assume what you are trying to demonstrate. I say "is that apostolic and how can I know" and you say, in essence, "he revealed it through the Church". That's nice and all, but it begs, rather than answers the question."

No it does not. The foundational revelation and principle is found in apostolic revelation. It is further understood by God's Oral Word so that He can guide the Church in every age. It never begs the question because it is not new revelation, But only a deeper understanding of it. Big difference

"I never said there wasn't a bishop. There wasn't a singular bishop. It was not, in the words of J.N.D. Kelly "a monarchical episcopate". Find me one person that can not only say, but demonstrate, unequivocally that there was one bishop in Rome who was ruling as pope from the time of Peter on."

Prove there was no singular bishop in Rome Andrew. Were you or Kelly there? Then you cannot say there was not a singular bishop. There are many history scholars who say there was. So what.

I also notice you conveniently skipped over the fact that you and Calvin see the clarity of Scripture very differently.

Again, the fact is that the Catholic Church has maintained the proper and consistent interpretation on this passage since the Church began, and your religion has not. God's Oral Word is what teaches us the truth about contraception and self abuse. Calvin said it was clear in genesis 38. Are you saying it is not? Answer the question Andrew. How convenient to only address the questions you want to respond to, how about Genesis 38. Calvin said it was clear, is it or not?

Rhology said...

It never begs the question because it is not new revelation, But only a deeper understanding of it. Big difference

But saying that that revelation is found in RCC and not in other self-proclaimed repositories of Apostolic Tradition, like EOC, *IS* begging the question.

Turretinfan said...

"Were you or Kelly there? Then you cannot say there was not a singular bishop."

Post-modernism at its most Romanist. You can't know history, because you weren't there.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin writes, "When did God allegedly reveal this?

Only recently, according to Bellisario.

But Bellisario wants to insist that there is no new revelation.

Which one is it, Belliario? No new revelation - or lots of new revelation."

It is neither, obviously God's Word is bale to guide His Church in every age despite new technology. It is not new revelation, but a deeper understanding of what was already revealed. Do you not understand the difference between a new teaching, and a deeper understanding of an old one? Most people can understand the difference, but I guess this bunch can't understand the difference.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Post-modernism at its most Romanist. You can't know history, because you weren't there."

No, postmodernism because you and Kelly rewrite history according to your own liking. Everyone knows that historians have traditionally taught that there were immediate successors of St. Peter, in the form of a singular bishop. If anyone is the postmodern nutjob it is those who think they can rewrite history.

bkaycee said...

One mans deeper understanding is anothers traditions of men.

Any particular reason why this "deeper understanding" takes 1900 years in some cases to appear formally?

Andrew said...

MB: "Everyone knows that historians have traditionally taught that there were immediate successors of St. Peter, in the form of a singular bishop."

Your's is the first comment on this thread. In it you decry the logcially fallacious arguments allegedly offered by Mr. Swan. I'll leave it to you to see if you can spot the irony.

Turretinfan said...

"It is not new revelation, but a deeper understanding of what was already revealed."

This is just double-speak. You are claiming that God is revealing something he didn't reveal before. You don't want to call that "new revelation" but your refusal to label it is simply symptomatic of the weakness of your position.

More to the point, the New Testament itself can be characterized as a "deeper understanding" of what was already revealed in the Old Testament. Nevertheless, we feel free to call it the "New" Testament not simply the "Deeper Understanding" Testament.

It's because Rome's claims are lies that its apologists have to resort to this sort of duplicity in her defense.

Andrew said...

Matthew, Genesis 38 is quite clear. Onan died for not doing what he was obligated to do. You should stop imposing your church polity on Protestantism. I don't have to agree with Calvin on Genesis 38. I can see where a person might get that from the passage, but it's hardly a straightforward condemnation of all birth control. I do think contraception is wrong by the way. It's just that I believe so on the basis of biblical principles. I don't believe it on the basis of a Church decree read into an indirect biblical passage.

Turretinfan said...

"No, postmodernism because you and Kelly rewrite history according to your own liking. Everyone knows that historians have traditionally taught that there were immediate successors of St. Peter, in the form of a singular bishop. If anyone is the postmodern nutjob it is those who think they can rewrite history. "

Yes. Pretending that old history books can't be revised is not post-modern, it's just ignorant. No serious historian (even in Rome's service) thinks that because something has been "traditionally taught" by "historians" it is consequently closed from further investigation in light of the facts.

Only those who fear the facts make such claims.

-TurretinFan

bkaycee said...

"Only those who fear the facts make such claims."

Papists have much to fear.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Prove there was no singular bishop in Rome Andrew. Were you or Kelly there?"

Prove that every pope is not an antipope. After all, were you present at every conclave? For all you know, money changed hands. The fix was in.

Andrew said...

Steve, I wouldn't mess around with Matthew Bellisario the master logician if I were you. You have been warned.

steve said...

Andrew said...

"Steve, I wouldn't mess around with Matthew Bellisario the master logician if I were you. You have been warned."

Thanks for the tip. I'll have to make sure my getaway car is close by and the escape route is unimpeded.

Adam said...

Matthew,

Who is to decide which interpretation is correct?

There are differences in the interpretation of the Epic of Gilgamesh. Who decides which are correct? There are differences in the interpretation of the Book of the Dead. Who decides which are correct? There are differences in the interpretation of the Baal Epic. Who decides which interpretation is correct?

A few assumptions are being made here:

First assumption: That everyone who interprets a text is competent to so do. The fields of syntax, semantics, and pragmatics are huge fields. I have entire textbooks written on those subjects alone. Interpreting a text involves study of how language works, and how the individual language of the text in question [Hebrew or Greek] works.

Second Assumption: That those who know how language works, and know the original languages are properly applying those rules in a way that is consistent with those principles. Just because someone knows the rules does not mean that they are applying the rules in a consistent fashion, or that they are applying the rules at all. Care must be taken to apply the same standards that one would apply to the Epic of Gilgamesh or the Shipwrecked Sailor to the Hebrew Bible. We must constantly be going back to these standards to see of one has used them an a way that would make nonsense out of another text.

Third assumption: That the mistakes in the application of the rules cannot be found out in instances we do not know by further study. God tells us that we must be diligent to rightly divide the word of truth [2 Timothy 2:15]. Being dilligent may mean that we may have to research and study in order to come up with the proper interpretation. If one wants to say that the disagreements cannot be solved upon further study, then one has to deal with the fact that there are differences of opinion on the interpretation of numerious texts, Biblical and non-Biblical. We have solved issues by further study in those other texts, and we have solved issues by further study in the Biblical material. To say that we could not do likewise with the material that is in question now would mean you would have to be omnicient, and be able to predict the future.

Third Assumption: That the meaning of the text of scripture as a whole is dependent upon the questioned meaning of individual passages. If 99% of the interpretation of an individual text is clear, then one can hardly say that there is a problem in the meaning of the text as a whole.

I think, finally, this view fails to appriciate the depth of meaning in language. While key doctrines of the text are clear, as one studies, one has an enrichment of the meaning of each of these Biblical teachings as one seeks to understand the worldview and language game that the text is presenting. Meaning in language is multifacited, and rich. To speak of the Catholic Church giving *the* interpretation of a text is entirely reductionistic. Language is a presentation of reality, and the many facits of reality and ones view of reality cannot be reduced to "infallible" pronouncements of a particular group. That is why conservative Roman Catholic exegesis is often so anachronistic. They must take the language game and worldview of modern Roman Catholicism, and read them back into the text, because the "infallible" pronouncements are given in the context of the language game and worldview of Roman Catholicism, and not in the language game and worldview of the Ancient Near East.

God Bless,
Adam

Adam said...

Ooops, typo. Accidentally wrote "Third Assumption" twice :-).

God Bless,
Adam

Rhology said...

MB said:
Who is to decide which interpretation is correct?

That is SO stupid. Unfortunately, it's a centerpiece of MB's apologetic.
OK, the Pope says sthg. Who is to decide which interpretation is correct?

Turretinfan said...

Imagined mental process as Bellisario drives down the local freeway: "The sign says 'SPEED LIMIT 55 MPH,' but how can I know what that means without an infallible interpreter?"

-TurreintFan

Adam said...

Turretinfan,

Exactly the point I have been trying to get across to Matthew! We interpret texts all of the time without an infallible interpreter, yes, even texts where different possible interpretations have been proposed; it is an essential part of our life. I can't think of a single linguist, except for the Plato's and the Derrida's of the world, who would use these arguments.

God Bless,
Adam

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin said,"Yes. Pretending that old history books can't be revised is not post-modern, it's just ignorant. No serious historian (even in Rome's service) thinks that because something has been "traditionally taught" by "historians" it is consequently closed from further investigation in light of the facts."

This amounts to nothing more than choosing which historian you want to believe, nothing more. The fact remains that St Peter has always had direct successors, from the beginning. Keep rewriting history.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Imagined mental process as Bellisario drives down the local freeway: "The sign says 'SPEED LIMIT 55 MPH,' but how can I know what that means without an infallible interpreter?"


How about this for a more accurate representation. Lets imagine Steve Hays and John Calvin reading the same Bible passage. John Calvin reads Genesis 38 and says, "The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing. Deliberately to withdraw from coitus in order that semen may fall on the ground is doubly monstrous. ...This impiety is especially condemned, now by the Spirit through Moses’ mouth."

Steve Hays reads Genesis 38 and says, "It is striking that the Bible is silent on the subject of masturbation—striking, both because the Bible is quite specific and explicit about a number of other sexual sins, and because masturbation is extremely widespread. The argument from silence is always a bit tricky, but if masturbation were intrinsically evil, you’d expect of find a warning to that effect somewhere in Scripture."

How blind you are in your dismissal of God's Oral Word! Its Steve Hays vs John Calvin who both say that Scripture is so plain and clear, yet we have these two self professed geniuses who cannot agree on a proper interpretation of the passage. If this is the result of your Sola Scriptura, I want none of it!

Rhology said...

So if MB reads RC canon law and it says "having sex with little boys is a sin" and thus he doesn't have sex with little boys... and Cardinal Law reads RC canon law and it says "having sex with little boys is a sin" and yet has sex with little boys...that's the canon law's fault. It's not clear enough. It didn't provide the escape from the problem of fallible private individual interpretation.


How blind you are in your dismissal of God's Oral Word! It's MB vs the pedophile RC priest who both say that the RCC is so plain and clear, yet we have these two self-professed geniuses who cannot agree on a proper interpretation of the passage. If this is the result of your Sola Ecclesia, I want none of it!

Turretinfan said...

I wrote: "Yes. Pretending that old history books can't be revised is not post-modern, it's just ignorant. No serious historian (even in Rome's service) thinks that because something has been "traditionally taught" by "historians" it is consequently closed from further investigation in light of the facts."

Bellisario wrote: "This amounts to nothing more than choosing which historian you want to believe, nothing more. The fact remains that St Peter has always had direct successors, from the beginning. Keep rewriting history."

That's classic begging the question. Perhaps you should use all caps when you scream your position loudly rather than argue for it.

You refuse to consider the evidence that is against your church. When we present it to you, it is as though you put your fingers in your ears and loudly shout "rewriting history" which is your code word for making history fit the evidence.

I do think that somewhere deep down you know that not only Scripture but history as well is against your church. That's why you so loudly attempt to assert Scripture's insufficiency, and present alternatively post-modern, ignorant, and now arbitrary ("This amounts to nothing more than choosing which historian you want to believe") views of history.

If your church is judged by history or by Scripture, it is not teaching apostolic doctrine. It's alleged "Oral Word" is simply later developments in doctrine.

As for J.N.D. Kelly, even Joseph Ratzinger has praised his work. Sure, Kelly isn't infallible, but trying to shout down his work with bare assertions is about as bright as insisting that Scripture isn't sufficient for the purpose for which it was given.

Turretinfan said...

I'm still waiting for the explanation of why Scripture needs to be so clear that Hays and Calvin will never disagree over even one moral issue. That explanation won't come.

Although, of course, there is no formal argument from Bellisario here, the argument would be:

1) If people can't agree on what Scripture means at any point, Scripture is not clear enough.

2) At point [X], they can't agree.

3) Therefore, Scripture is not clear enough.

The flaw in the argument is the major premise. We don't grant that premise and folks like Bellisario can't establish it, only trumpet it.

-TurretinFan

Adam said...

Matthew,

How blind you are in your dismissal of God's Oral Word! Its Steve Hays vs John Calvin who both say that Scripture is so plain and clear, yet we have these two self professed geniuses who cannot agree on a proper interpretation of the passage. If this is the result of your Sola Scriptura, I want none of it!

Has John Calvin done an advanced linguistic study of this passage? I know that many people have said that Calvin's views were very close to the medeval Roman Catholicism. The fact that Calvin has not done any detailed exegetical study on this passage really leads me to believe that he has not done the necessary work to be relied upon, whereas modern commentators have.

I say that because it is pretty certain that Calvin was wrong here. Why? Consider the discourse context of this passage. This story is, in fact, inserted right into the middle of the story of Joseph. Why? Because there is a discussion of the continuation of the line of Judah. Why is this important? Because the line of Judah is the line of David, and also the line of the messiah.

Now, we also must understand that this is in the context of laverite law. Tamar's husband has just been struck dead. It is the duty in ancient near eastern culture of the brother of the dead person to go in and raise up seed for him, so that his wife is not left without help in their old age, and will be left with an heir, amongst many other things. It was also considered to be a dishonor to the brother to do what Onan did.

Hence, you have Onan attempting to destroy the elect line, and attempting to disgrace his brother and her wife. Not to mention the fact that he did it all for the selfish reason that the children would not be his. Hence, he is way out of line here.

The context, therefore, has nothing whatsoever to do with anything Calvin was saying. It is not in the context of general moral principles; it is in the context of God's electing plan, and in the context of Onan's disgrace of his family, and his selfishness towards his brother and his wife.

Again, you assume that, just because someone is competent, that they have done solid work in this area, and wrestled with the text at the length of someone like a Robert Alter, or other literary critics who have addressed this issue. I immediately saw where Calvin was getting this from [his background in medeval Roman Catholicism], and was immediately aware of the problems with this interpretation when I consulted Dr. Robert Alter, Dr. Kenneth Matthews, and even my professor, Dr. Dennis Magary. In fact, I can't think of a single commentator who agrees with Calvin on this text.

Also, suppose that the text is in question. Does that mean that we cannot come to who is correct by more study and research? Would you not have to be omnicient to make that claim?

God Bless,
Adam

Matthew Bellisario said...

Rhology says, ow blind you are in your dismissal of God's Oral Word! It's MB vs the pedophile RC priest who both say that the RCC is so plain and clear, yet we have these two self-professed geniuses who cannot agree on a proper interpretation of the passage."

Are you seriously comparing the two? The Catholic Church defines the teaching as being clear by God's Oral Word, it isn't based on private opinion as yours is. Big difference pal.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turreitn says, You refuse to consider the evidence that is against your church. When we present it to you, it is as though you put your fingers in your ears and loudly shout "rewriting history" which is your code word for making history fit the evidence."

TF, you refuse to consider the historical evidence that is against your church. When we present it to you, it is as though you put your fingers in your ears, which is your code word for ignoring the historical evidence that goes against the history you present to fit your own fallacious ideas.

Turretinfan said...

Did the Irish bishops have to report the widespread abuse issues to the police, or was that subject to the pontifical secret?

-TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

Adam writes, "I say that because it is pretty certain that Calvin was wrong here."

I am certain that John Calvin would say that you are wrong. After all he was a great Scripture scholar, and he said the passage of Gen 38 was very clear concerning the issue. Who are we going to believe, you or him?

According to you, Calvinists were being mislead by Sacred Scripture for 500 years until you and Steve Hays came along to change the teaching and interpretation for everyone today. Calvinists for 500 years interpreted Gen 38 one way, and now you expect everyone to go along with your interpretation? Good luck on selling that load of horse manure.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Did the Irish bishops have to report the widespread abuse issues to the police, or was that subject to the pontifical secret?"

Great ad-hominem attack. Did your Protestant child molesters report their abuse to the police or was that subject to pastor Billy Bob's secret?

Turretinfan said...

"TF, you refuse to consider the historical evidence that is against your church."

You know very well that's not true. I've repeatedly addressed the historical evidence presented, including the evidence that is allegedly against my church.

"When we present it to you, it is as though you put your fingers in your ears, which is your code word for ignoring the historical evidence that goes against the history you present to fit your own fallacious ideas."

You've neglected to properly edit this to include an actual code word. Parody FAIL.

But, in fact, our side isn't at all afraid of the evidence. We quite willingly investigate history and uncover the facts. It's your side that is busy trying to conceal the inconvenient truths from your people.

-TurretinFan

Andrew said...

Matthew, you argue like a child. Say whatever you like in response. I think I'm done with this particular thread.

Turretinfan said...

"Great ad-hominem attack. Did your Protestant child molesters report their abuse to the police or was that subject to pastor Billy Bob's secret?"

My example is a real one that illustrates a failure in your system for the rules of your church to be understood by her bishops (or for your church to have rules that require the bishops to conceal crimes - take your pick).

Your example is something you made up because you're mad I pointed out what a corrupt church in you're in. There's a world of difference between the two. I'd be surprised if any of the Reformed commenters here disagreed with me that elders have a duty to report criminal conduct to the authorities, particularly when it involves highly recidivistic criminal behaviour.

-TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin the cases of sexual abuse are higher in your Protestant "churches" than in the Catholic Church. I am sure one reason is that Protestants are hiding abuse as well. Your ad-hominems are going tiresome.

Matthew Bellisario said...

TF, abuse has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. Just a desperate ad-hominem on your part to distract for the ridiculous statements you have made over the course of this post.

bkaycee said...

You will have to forgive MB for being so impervious to history and logic, rational thinking, and common sense. He can't help it, to even consider something counter to what has been "Infallibly" defined by his church is to flirt with self excommunication, as those beliefs are part of dogmatic faith which is necessary for salvation in the Romanist faith.

So MB will continue to call black, white and white, black until some "deeper understanding" is revealed by the Papacy or magesterium. God help us.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

I am certain that John Calvin would say that you are wrong. After all he was a great Scripture scholar, and he said the passage of Gen 38 was very clear concerning the issue. Who are we going to believe, you or him?

Wow. That's some admission! But it's weird reading MB argue in favour of Calvin's interpretation of Scripture. I think he is the only Catholic I've ever read that does so. I'm gonna frame this!

Adam said...

Matthew,

I am certain that John Calvin would say that you are wrong. After all he was a great Scripture scholar, and he said the passage of Gen 38 was very clear concerning the issue. Who are we going to believe, you or him?

And just how do you know that Calvin would say I am wrong? Calvin did not do anything remotely like discourse analysis on this passage. Calvin did not have the type of literary critical study of that a Robert Alter. Just what makes you think if Calvin were alive today, and we presented him with all of this background information, that he would not agree with us? You are assuming that Calvin has put the same level of study into this issue that I have, and that several of my professors have, and that is a fatal assumption. Hence, I am presenting arguments on the basis of how language works; Calvin was not. You believe the one who is using the principles that lead you to say that speed limit 55mph means what it means.

According to you, Calvinists were being mislead by Sacred Scripture for 500 years until you and Steve Hays came along to change the teaching and interpretation for everyone today. Calvinists for 500 years interpreted Gen 38 one way, and now you expect everyone to go along with your interpretation? Good luck on selling that load of horse manure.

I wouldn't say they were misled by scripture; I would say they were misled by their own unwillingness to look at the passage in depth. I cannot think of anyone who put any kind of proto-textlinguistic methods to this text in that time period.

Also, before the advent of textlinguistics, no one was aware of the differing narritive functions of the waw disjunctive and the waw hahippuk. Yet, those are very important in understanding the meaning of narrative passages. Is it "a load of manure" to try to sell that? All Hebrew grammarians I am aware of accept it. The point is that protestants are the one who are objectively coming to the meaning of scripture, because we are rely upon the way in which meaning in language works to come to our conclusions. As we do, our understanding of scripture becomes richer and richer.

That is far different from the Roman Catholic who has to "check his brain at the door," and believe whatever their church tells him, no matter how rediculiously anachronistic it may be.

God Bless,
Adam

Turretinfan said...

"Turretin the cases of sexual abuse are higher in your Protestant "churches" than in the Catholic Church."

1) We both know you can't prove that. In fact, you probably lack any good warrant for believing that.

2) The issue above was the demonstrated fact that your bishops have for a long time been concealing this, believing that your church demanded this as a rule.

3) Even if you could find a Protestant church with a corresponding rule (which you can't), we don't claim that our churches are infallible rulemakers.

"I am sure one reason is that Protestants are hiding abuse as well."

1) Your certainty is based on your fanatical zeal, not data.

2) I'm sure "Protestant" abusers are hiding abuse themselves, but one of the reasons that the statistics are as high as they are among "Protestants" may well be that they don't assert any "pontifical secret" with respect to such cases.

3) See above regarding the irrelevance of your attempted tu quoque.

"Your ad-hominems are going tiresome."

Your comment lacks both grammar and logic. If your church claims to provide clear rules that better inform people than Scripture does, it's fair for me to point to an example when Scripture is more clear than the rule of your church.

Turretinfan said...

"TF, abuse has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. Just a desperate ad-hominem on your part to distract for the ridiculous statements you have made over the course of this post. "

a) I've explained the connection above.

b) You have yet to point out any ridiculous statement, though you have certainly exuded ridicule.

c) The fact that the widespread abuse by priests in your church is scandal doesn't make every reference to it an ad hominem.

Edward Reiss said...

Matthew,

"Turretin the cases of sexual abuse are higher in your Protestant "churches" than in the Catholic Church. I am sure one reason is that Protestants are hiding abuse as well. Your ad-hominems are going tiresome."

It is not about the incidents of abuse, but the bureaucratic moves by the Majisterium to cover up abuse--the very same Majisterium which is supposed to safeguard teaching. Facts are facts, and there is a serious abuse scandal in the RCC, and the RCC acted to protect itself instead of the children under its care in several different places over decades. Since you claim the RCC is pretty much the voice of Christ this is a serious burden for your cause. The pope is supposed to have absolute, immediate jurisdiction, and instead of taking responsibility for his office he and guys like you are making all kinds of excuses. It makes it seem that, despite the rhetoric, the RCC doesn't really believe in its own claims, so why should you or I?

No amount of subject changing by you will change that salient fact.

Regarding parallel oral teaching. Since you cannot show such a teaching except by an appeal to your own authority, it is a useless and circular argument. No amount of bombast by you will change that salient fact either. You simply cannot show where any particular oral teaching goes back to the Apostles--which is why you want to change the subject again.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Adam says, "I wouldn't say they were misled by scripture; I would say they were misled by their own unwillingness to look at the passage in depth."

You are really putting yourself up on a pedestal to decry that no Calvinsts looked at this passage for 500 years until you and hays, and some others came along. It is nice to know that you think that you are a greater Scripture scholar than those of your kind that came before you for the past 500 years, but that still does not prove that your interpretation is correct. then I guess

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Deliberately to withdraw from coitus in order that semen may fall on the ground is doubly monstrous. ...This impiety is especially condemned, now by the Spirit through Moses’ mouth."

Matthew, you do understand that coitus interruptus is NOT masturbation? Try to think clearly about what "withdrawal" means. You may be right about masturbation, but you cannot prove it from what Calvin says here, nor can you prove it from Gen. 38. Onan refused to produce offspring, but the context suggests he withdrew during intercourse:

9 But Onan knew that the offspring would not be his. So whenever he went in to his brother’s wife he would waste the semen on the ground, so as not to give offspring to his brother (Gen. 38:9, ESV).

This is not the same as masturbation since the act of sexual intercourse is not involved in masturbation.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"TF says regarding abuse cases, "We both know you can't prove that. In fact, you probably lack any good warrant for believing that."

Yes we can and we have proven it many times before from statistics provided by many sources. The Protester abuses sexually more than Catholics on a percentage based analysis. I and others have already proven this from several sources. I think we know who is denial here.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

And the only self-abuse I'm engaging in here is reading this crappy combox. No offence, James! ;-)

Constantine said...

Bellisario, once again, shows his complete separation from historical fact and both general scholarship and Roman Catholic scholarship.

The fact is that the Catholic Church has maintained the proper and consistent interpretation on this passage (Genesis 38) since the Church began, and your religion has not.

The following information is derived from the preeminent Roman Catholic scholar on the topic, the Hon. Dr. John T. Noonan, Jr. in his magnum opus, “Contraception: A History of Its Treatment by the Catholic Theologians and Canonists.” (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1986.) Dr. Noonan has his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the Catholic University in America and has been honored by the University of Notre Dame for his work on behalf of the Catholic Church.

Noonan begins his work by noting, “A closer examination of the teaching (on contraception) may show that it does not possess an abstract constancy and independence. It has developed…” p. 6.

Oops, Bellisario.

“In the Christian era of the Empire, there seems to have been no new inhibition to the dissemination of contraceptive techniques.” P. 19

“Indisputable reference to contraception is not earlier than the eighth century. “ p. 155.

So far, Bellisario is only wrong by 8 centuries.

Regarding Genesis 38, Dr. Noonan notes that the first documented use of the story in the context of contraception in the Christian church was in the 4th century by Epiphanius. And Epiphanius did NOT apply the story as a general prohibition, but as a condemnation of Gnostic rituals, only!

Others like Origen interpreted Geneis 38 allegorically; Ambrose’s commentary on Genesis omits this text; Chrysostom fails to make the connection of the text to contraception; St. Ephraem said Onan acted out of hate without mentioning the act in a contraceptive context.

As late as the 16th century, the Catechism of the Catholic Church did not contain Genesis 38 in its teaching against contraception.

Concurrent with that, St. Laurence of Brindisi interpreted Genesis 38 psychologically, and not physically. This means that Onan’s sin was not coitus interruptus per se, but rather his “state of mind” and inclination not to have children.

Noonan notes that 19th century Catholic moral theology was based extensively on the work of St. Alphonsus Liguori who ignored Genesis 38 altogether. The Catholic Church has confirmed that St. Alphonsus’s works are “without error” so his ommission of Genesis 38 is significant. Later, Noonan notes, “the official directives from Rome in the period from the restoration of the Church in France to the end of the reign of Pius IX showed no special concern to combat birth control.” (p. 404).


Just to recap: there was no consistent teaching on Genesis 38 before the 4th century. In the 12th century the Glossa ordinaria contained only an allegorical account of Onan; the 16th century Catechism ignored the story entirely as did the important Catholic theologians of the day; 19th century Catholic moral theology was based on the writings of a Saint of the Church who omitted the story altogether. So the use of the story of Onan in the way Bellisario asserts, is simply a figment of his fertile – if very futile – imagination.


But the most readily apparent proof of Bellisario’s error is the current Roman practice of the “rhythm method”. The pope officially promulgated RM in 1951 and its promotion of intercourse in the “sterile period” is a direct contradiction of Augustine.

A direct contradiction of an earlier teaching disproves Bellisario’s belief that his church has been consistent. So which will Bellisario disavow – Augustine or the pope? This will be interesting to watch.

“Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight.” Isaiah 5:21

Peace.

Rhology said...

MB, are you seriously comparing the two? The Bible defines the Bible as being clear by God's Written Word, it isn't based on private opinion as yours is. Big difference pal.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Pilgrim says, "Matthew, you do understand that coitus interruptus is NOT masturbation? Try to think clearly about what "withdrawal" means. You may be right about masturbation, but you cannot prove it from what Calvin says here, nor can you prove it from Gen. 38.

Did you read the entire passage by Calvin. "The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing." That means any spilling outside of intercourse. In case you don't know, that includes self abuse. So yes Calvin is referring to it, because self abuse falls into the category of spilling seed outside of intercourse, period. Nice try to get around the text.

Matthew Bellisario said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matthew Bellisario said...

Constantine writes, "The following information is derived from the preeminent Roman Catholic scholar on the topic, the Hon. Dr. John T. Noonan, Jr. in his magnum opus, “Contraception: A History of Its Treatment by the Catholic Theologians and Canonists.”


Let me make this plain, I don't give a damn what a private theologian says, if he goes against the teaching of the Church. The Catholic Church and her official documents consistently teach one teaching on contraception. Noonan's statements are not dogmatic. Find a Church document that proves your position and maybe we can talk Constantine. Until then, Noonan's private opinion means nothing.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Outside of intercourse means just that--something that is not intercourse. What Onan did was still intercourse, for which he was punished. However, the Biblical passage does not address masturbation, even if Calvin does. I would say that Calvin here may be going beyond what the text warrants.

Rhology said...

Let me make this plain, I don't give a damn what a private theologian says, if he goes against the teaching of the Church.

Trust MB that he's correctly giving us "what the Church teaches". He's more trustworthy than a theologian.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Pilgrim says, "Outside of intercourse means just that--something that is not intercourse. What Onan did was still intercourse, for which he was punished."

What? In case you did not realize it, Onan could not have spilled his seed during intercourse. He spilled his seed outside of intercourse, as the text in Gen 38 tells us. What are you talking about? Calvin is referring to the text, and he confirms the fact that, "The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing." This also applies to self abuse. They both involve the spilling of the seed outside of intercourse, plain and simple.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

In addition, we have established that God was displeased with Onan for not bearing children with his brother's widow. We cannot extrapolate from that that every one who "withdraws" is displeasing God. It is only one text and not a doctrine or defined principle put forth by an apostle or the OT equivalent. If it were written as a command, there would be no doubt.

By the way, (theoretically speaking), if your brother were killed would you feel obligated to bring forth children from your sister-in-law? Why or why not?

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Matthew, are you a child? To withdraw means just that. It is done during the act of intercourse. Do I have to get really specific and graphic? James, Steve, TF, et. al, help me out here! Could it be that MB really doesn't understand this? God help us all!

Adam said...

Matthew,

You are really putting yourself up on a pedestal to decry that no Calvinsts looked at this passage for 500 years until you and hays, and some others came along. It is nice to know that you think that you are a greater Scripture scholar than those of your kind that came before you for the past 500 years, but that still does not prove that your interpretation is correct. then I guess

I asked a question, and I did not get an answer to it. Where did Calvin, or any other scholar of this time period, put any kind of proto-textlinguistic argument to this text?

The point is not to say who is the better scripture scholar; I don't get into those kinds of childish debates. The point is to say that our arguments apply the rules of linguistics to this text, and Calvin's arguments are not. As I said to you, just because someone is competent does not mean that somehow they are properly using the tools they have, and it does not mean that we cannot grow beyond what they knew through further study and research. According to you, if everyone in the past believed that 2+2=5, you would have to believe them.

Also, why does it not prove that my interpretation is correct? What I am using is the very same kinds of things that allowed us to discover that particular grammatical forms in the Mayan languages are used to indicate the climax of a narrative. This are simply the principles of how language works.

You use these very same principles that I am use in my exegesis to get that Speed Limit 55mph means what it means. Again, your argument taken to its logical conclusion is that no one can understand what any text says, period. Either their are standards of meaning upon which a protestant can base his interpretations which we are even using to interpret one another, or you have just destroyed meaning in language, and all interpretation is impossible. You can't have it both ways.

God Bless,
Adam

Turretinfan said...

"Yes we can and we have proven it many times before from statistics provided by many sources."

No, you haven't, and no you can't.

"The Protester abuses sexually more than Catholics on a percentage based analysis."

That wasn't your original claim. That claim also isn't provable. And, as noted above, the tu quoque isn't relevant to the discussion.

"I and others have already proven this from several sources."

No, you haven't.

"I think we know who is denial here."

Right now, the Vatican is denying that their flawed and unbiblical policy of clerical celibacy had anything to do with this.

- TurretinFan

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin, you are just lying through your teeth now. We have had this discussion numerous times, and yes we can prove that the percentage rates of abuse are higher in Protestant "churches" than Catholic. You are the one who chose to bring this up, despite your earlier recommendations on your own blog where you told others not to use these types of arguments in these types of discussions.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Matthew, are you a child? To withdraw means just that. It is done during the act of intercourse. Do I have to get really specific and graphic? James, Steve, TF, et. al, help me out here!"

Help you out? Because you can't see the obvious fact that Calvin was referring to Gen 38 and the fact the seed was spilled outside of intercourse, which earlier you just denied? "The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing." This is Calvin referring to Onan! Outside of intercourse means just that, that included self abuse. You cannot get around the text, or Calvin's interpretation of the act. go away if you are not going to be honest.

Turretinfan said...

"Let me make this plain, I don't give a [profanity omitted] what a private theologian says."

File this under my comment above about ignoring the evidence.

"The Catholic Church and her official documents consistently teach one teaching on contraception."

Bellisario hasn't even read all the documents. He's just expressing his wish.

"Noonan's statements are not dogmatic."

No one said they were.

"Find a Church document that proves your position and maybe we can talk Constantine."

This misses the point wildly.

"Until then, Noonan's private opinion means nothing."

See above, about where to file this.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Constantine, I get enough of your BS on this blog, don't come over to mine and pollute it with your nonsense.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

So whenever he went in to his brother’s wife...

O.K., maybe I'm getting hung up on this part of the verse. This suggests to me that he was having intercourse with his brother's wife. It could mean that while on the way to be with her, outside of the tent, or whatever, he "spilled his seed on the ground." But if he "went in to his brother's wife," that always means that they had sex. I suppose the verse could mean that he was on his way to see her for the purpose of having a sexual encounter when he did the deed before having the encounter. In any case, there's no doubt that they had sex on a regular basis whether he spilled seed before the encounter or during it.

Of course, Calvin is the one who puts forth the "withdrawing," so I naturally am thinking of contraception, not masturbation.

In either case, I think God was displeased not necessarily with the mechanism of Onan's disobedience, but with the fact that he would not fulfill his familial obligations. I still think that the mechanism of Onan's disobedience is not the focal point of God's displeasure with him.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"O.K., maybe I'm getting hung up on this part of the verse."

Yes, because it is not the fact that he actually had intercourse, but the fact that the act of spilling the seed happened outside intercourse, which is clearly what happened in Onan's case. This is what Calvin was talking about when he refers to, "The voluntary spilling of semen outside of intercourse between man and woman is a monstrous thing." It is that act that happens outside of intercourse that is the sin. Therefore any time that act happens outside of intercourse, regardless of whether or not you had intercourse prior to the act of the "spilling," then it is sinful. This includes self abuse.

bkaycee said...

I bet at this point, MB is wishing for the "good old days" when the temperal authority of the church could call out to the executioner who would make one final fiery point to end the debate.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"I bet at this point, MB is wishing for the "good old days" when the temperal authority of the church could call out to the executioner who would make one final fiery point to end the debate."

Oh no, I am having way too much fun debating 5 people at one time, all with their own separate arguments, and separate subject matters.

Turretinfan said...

"Turretin, you are just lying through your teeth now."

No.

"We have had this discussion numerous times, and yes we can prove that the percentage rates of abuse are higher in Protestant "churches" than Catholic."

No, you (not you personally, of course, but someone on your side who falls into the category of "middle men" who actually do apologetics) can argue that. You may even have some evidence that superficially supports such a conclusion. But you cannot prove it.

Of course, there is way more evidence for that irrelevant point than for almost anything else you've been saying ...

"You are the one who chose to bring this up, despite your earlier recommendations on your own blog where you told others not to use these types of arguments in these types of discussions."

I am the one who brought this up? Really? Scroll up.

I neither brought up your irrelevant tangent about comparative percentages, nor did I introduce the sexual topics, nor even the particular topic of the widespread abuse of helpless children by those people from whom you supposedly take your order.

Furthermore, you haven't been able to address the issue of the fact that your church either makes evil rules or unclear rules. (Please tell us which it is.)

-TurretinFan

bkaycee said...

I saide "I bet at this point, MB is wishing for the "good old days" when the temperal authority of the church could call out to the executioner who would make one final fiery point to end the debate."

MB said "Oh no, I am having way too much fun debating 5 people at one time, all with their own separate arguments, and separate subject matters."

I suppose this could be a new twist on self-flagelation, (shortening your temporal punisment in purgatory) by having others verbally punish you here. You certainly appear to have been beaten "senseless". :)

Pilgrimsarbour said...

O.K. I won't argue the point anymore of when and where and how the seed was spilled, although it does speak to contraception. The verse doesn't say "outside of intercourse," but Calvin does. I need to stick with the verse, of course, no matter what I may think of the great Calvin. I still think he is going "beyond what the Scriptures say."

My main point is actually what I previously stated about God's displeasure with Onan's disobedience rather than with the mechanism of it.

Turretinfan said...

"Oh no, I am having way too much fun debating 5 people at one time, all with their own separate arguments, and separate subject matters."

Perhaps Bellisario should take the defense of his church more seriously, and leave it to the competent experts?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

“How do decide if something is moral or not if Scripture does not address it directly? Or, how do address moral issues if you think Scripture does not address a particular subject, despite what your forefathers like Calvin saw in Scripture such as the sins of impurity or contraception, which you now reject?…Hence Tradition is needed to determine what is moral and what is not, and it is needed to determine the proper understanding of His Word.”

Is that a fact? That’s odd since, by contrast, this is what one Catholic theologian said a few years ago:

“We are in fact constantly confronted with problems where it isn’t possible to find the right answer in a short time. Above all in the case of problems having to do with ethics, particularly medical ethics, but also in the area of social ethics. For example, the situation in American hospitals forced us to deal with whether it is obligatory to continue giving food and water to the very end to patients in an irreversible coma. This is certainly enormously important for those in positions of responsibility, if only because they are really concerned and because it’s necessary to find a common policy for hospitals. We finally had to say, after very long studies, ‘Answer that for now on the local level; we aren’t far enough along to have full certainty about that.’ Again in the area of medical ethics, new possibilities and with them new borderline situations, are constantly arising where it is not immediately evident how to apply principles. We can’t simply conjure up certitude. Then we have to say, ‘Work this through for now among yourselves, so that we gradually mature to certainty from level to level within the context of experience.’ There needn’t always be universal answers. We also have to realize our limits and to forgo answers where they aren’t possible.”

So who should I believe? Bellisario? Or the Catholic theologian I just quoted?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

“How do decide if something is moral or not if Scripture does not address it directly? Or, how do address moral issues if you think Scripture does not address a particular subject, despite what your forefathers like Calvin saw in Scripture such as the sins of impurity or contraception, which you now reject?…Hence Tradition is needed to determine what is moral and what is not, and it is needed to determine the proper understanding of His Word.”

If that's the case, then why are there so many rival schools of Catholic casuistry?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Saint Paul says that we must follow God's Word, which he says he is passing on to his followers, whether it is written or spoken. It is up to you to prove that what Saint Paul said was false, or that he meant something entirely different than what his words say taken at face value.

Notice, once more, that Bellisario's appeal takes for granted the perspicuity of Scripture.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

“Actually you should go tell your Protestant brothers and sister this since many of your kind allow abortion under certain circumstances.”

Doesn’t Catholicism allow abortions in double effect situations?

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

“Its Steve Hays vs John Calvin who both say that Scripture is so plain and clear…”

Needless to say, that’s a straw man version of perspicuity. Read the qualified definition of perspicuity in the Westminster Confession, or the qualified definition in Turretin’s Institutes.

“…yet we have these two self professed geniuses who cannot agree on a proper interpretation of the passage.”

I’m a “self-professed genius?” That’s news to me. And if I were a “self-professed” genius, I’d expect to be the first to know.

“I am certain that John Calvin would say that you are wrong.”

Actually, Calvin has had a lot of time refine his understanding of Scripture. Heaven is the best seminary around.

“After all he was a great Scripture scholar.”

Calvin was the greatest exegete of his generation. But there have naturally been advances in Biblical scholarship since the 16C.

“Who are we going to believe, you or him?”

Of course, that’s a dumb way to frame the issue. This isn’t a question of taking somebody’s word for it, as if this were an argument from authority. Rather, we go with whoever offers the best exegetical argument for his interpretation.

“According to you, Calvinists were being mislead by Sacred Scripture for 500 years until you and Steve Hays came along to change the teaching and interpretation for everyone today. Calvinists for 500 years interpreted Gen 38 one way, and now you expect everyone to go along with your interpretation?”

Does Bellisario have polling data for the past 500 years on how all Calvinists have understood Gen 38?

“TF, abuse has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. Just a desperate ad-hominem on your part to distract for the ridiculous statements you have made over the course of this post.”

Needless to say, Onanism has nothing to do with the discussion at hand. But that didn’t prevent Masturbatory Matt from defaulting to his favorite topic of conversation.

“You are really putting yourself up on a pedestal to decry that no Calvinsts looked at this passage for 500 years until you and hays, and some others came along. It is nice to know that you think that you are a greater Scripture scholar than those of your kind that came before you for the past 500 years, but that still does not prove that your interpretation is correct. then I guess.”

Biblical archeology has improved our understanding of Scripture in many respects.

And at the risk of stating the obvious, for a dim bulb like Bellisario, Calvin is not our rule of faith.

Constantine said...

Let me make this plain, I don't give a damn what a private theologian says, if he goes against the teaching of the Church.

Going against the teaching of the Church? Are you mad?

I know comprehension is not your strong suit, so let me list the sources Noonan used that contradict your Holiness:

Epiphanius, Origen, Ambrose, Chrysostom, Augustine, Ephraem , St. Laurence of Brindisi, St. Alphonsus Liguori, In addition he cites the works of the great theologians Thomas Sanchez, Le Maistre, Angelus, Sylvester, Soto, Navarrus – and the Catechism of the Catholic Church!!!!

Which of these, Eminence, are not representative of Catholic teaching? Augustine? Alphonsus Liguori? The Catechism????

Only Bellisario, in his rush to be right, could say that the Catechism “goes against the teaching of the church”. How very, very pathetic.

And you don’t even know what your Church teaches about lay theologians and the Magisterium. That’s funny. (The Catechism, by the way, gives a “damn” about private theologians.) To wit, the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

2033 The Magisterium of the Pastors of the Church in moral matters is ordinarily exercised in catechesis and preaching, with the help of the works of theologians and spiritual authors.
-AND-

2038 In the work of teaching and applying Christian morality, the Church needs the dedication of pastors, the knowledge of theologians, and the contribution of all Christians and men of good will.

In addition to your abyssmal use of the English language and foul mouth, your utter inability to comprehend logical concepts and your ignorance of Catholic theology, you apparently can’t read!

As I mentioned earlier, but will do so again, and more s l o w l y to help you, Dr. Noonan received his Ph.D from the Catholic University of America. What credentials do you have, Eminence, that allow you to speak so badly of a distinguished Catholic scholar? Given your misuse of the language, complete ignorance of logic, pedantic manner and foul temper, I’m guessing high school, Matthew. Maybe an associate’s degree in mechanical drawing. Your surely have no training in this field.

To paraphrase that lovely line from an old Dudley Moore film, “Usually one must go to a bowling alley to find a theologian of your calibre!”

steve said...

I'm also waiting for da Champ to respond to the theologian I quoted. Perhaps he's too shellshocked at this point for a rematch.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"The Catechism, by the way, gives a “damn” about private theologians"


Constantine, did you read my entire statement? I never said all private theologians did I? Once again your ridiculous statements only prove my point. You cannot hold to an argument, you create new ones. I never said I did not give a damn about all private theologians. Be honest.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve said, "Doesn’t Catholicism allow abortions in double effect situations?"

No it does not. If you understood anything about moral theology you would not have made that comment. Catholicism condemns abortion for any reason. We won't get into double effect and moral theology, that would be another debate. I think its too hard for Steve to grasp.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve said, "I'm also waiting for da Champ to respond to the theologian I quoted. Perhaps he's too shellshocked at this point for a rematch."

Shellshocked? From what? The quote you posted which says nothing of the specifics I mentioned? You really have no clue as how to argue rationally Steve. You pull a quote out of context dealing with a nonspecific issue and then act like that refutes the specific I was talking about.

First of we all we know with certitude that in-vitro fertilization is immoral. God says so by His oral Word, which comes through His only Church. So you have to prove where the Church says that what I presented as being certain, is not certain.

Quoting a theologian, that talks in generalities about some things in medical ethics which may as of yet have no certain answers has nothing to do with the specifics that I presented where the Church does teach with certitude. Did you not quote your theologian for a specific reason?

Did you think you were going to be clever and surprise me by telling me that the quote was from Cardinal Ratzinger, as if I didn't know Catholic sources better than you ever will? I have read Cardinal Ratzinger at length Steve, and you quoted from his book "Salt of the Earth", which was an interview put into writing. Cardinal Ratzinger never said that we cannot know anything outside of Scripture dealing with morality for certain. If you read the entirety of the quote you posted, you would see that he was talking about applying principals to individual unique circumstances, such as food and water given to patients and the like. Steve, you are a fool if you think you can pull something like this to argue against what I presented from the Church, which teaches with absolute certitude on many moral questions that are not addressed in Scripture.

And for the record, I am not afraid of you or your pathetic arguments, and I could no more be shellshocked from this shallow, weak, and pathetic argumentation than a soldier would be getting bombarded by powdered donuts on a battlefield.

I have to laugh. You sitting back in your dad's chair drinking your chocolate milk in front of the computer, while your mom calls you to go to bed as you finish cutting and pasting your anonymous Catholic theologian. Wringing your hands thinking you are going to unveil this great shocking revelation that you quoted Cardinal Ratzinger! What a joke.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"No it does not. If you understood anything about moral theology you would not have made that comment. Catholicism condemns abortion for any reason. We won't get into double effect and moral theology, that would be another debate. I think its too hard for Steve to grasp."

We'll see who has a problem grasping the issues:

[Quote]
The Oct. 25-Nov. 7 edition of this paper included a column by the neuroscientist - priest Father Tad Pacholczyk. It addressed the morality of three approaches (two surgical and one pharmaceutical) used to resolve the lifethreatening, often fatal tragedy of pregnancy attachment outside the womb. (extrauterine/ ectopic pregnancy).
He asserted that only one — a surgical approach — is morally acceptable and the other two are morally objectionable.
His opinions do not represent the teaching of the church nor mainstream moral thinking faithful to the magisterium on this topic.
This issue has been reviewed by the cardinal’s Bioethics Committee three times in the past six years. In those reviews, note was taken of the concerns his column raised. But, these concerns were not found to be contrary to church thinking. Some writers like the author do not agree with this. Yet, the Holy See’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has not addressed the matter — though the topic has been supposedly before it for almost a decade.
Because such pregnancies are not uncommon and their outcome potentially fatal, a fuller discussion in the column should have occurred. A more adequate treatment would have included the following key points consistent with Catholic moral analysis.
First, the two surgical procedures are morally acceptable because the intent behind the surgery is to heal damaged tissue, not directly kill the fetus. Besides the appropriate moral intent, the surgical act is acceptable. In light of the risk of the mother bleeding to death caused by the attachment’s damage and possible rupture of the site, time is of the essence in these circumstances.
The surgical procedure he questions is tolerated because again the purpose is to remove with as little risk as possible to the mother the damaged tissue at the site where tragically the cells have attached. In removing the damaged tissue, the doctor, as is the case with the removal of a cancerous womb in a pregnant woman, foresees but does not intend the demise of the embryonic/fetal person. Thus it is morally acceptable and has been since first advanced over 40 years ago by the conservative Jesuit moralist Father John Connery.
The columnist also argues that the use of methotrexate, a chemical often used with cancer therapy, is not morally acceptable. Its hypothesized outcome is the dissolving of those embryonic or fetal cells which have attached sadly to the wrong and often lethal place within the mother’s body. It is used when medically appropriate as an alternative to surgery to avoid the latter’s risk of infection and other problems.
Morally, it is tolerable because it is not factually clear, as the author notes, as to what exactly is dissolved and also if a moral distinction at that early stage of development should occur between the attaching cells and the other parts of the terminal pregnancy.
Again, the intent is to remove the cells which are attacking the health of the mother, not attack directly the fetal/embryonic person. The moral object/purpose of this intervention is to address damaged tissue and start the healing process. It is not to kill the embryonic person.

steve said...

Cont.
In both situations, as well as in the surgical intervention the columnist accepts, other measures to allow the continuation of the pregnancy do not exist. These emergency circumstances then allow for the use of the moral reasoning known as the principle of double effect (or multiple outcomes) to address this type of tragedy. In all three measures, it is always affirmed there are two lives present. No one advances that an abortion is acceptable. These measures do not constitute an abortion.
The church’s wisdom notes the tragedy and sadness the unintended, though foreseen, loss under these limited circumstances presents. It uses its wealth of reflection to reason how the matter can be addressed morally and both lives respected — the mother’s as well as the young fetus/embryo.
While some commentators like this neuroscientist- priest are free to note their reservation on this or any other matter, church teaching supports a broader perspective. Some may not agree with the moral calculus used. However, it has served our magisterium and others within the church well.
Catholic mothers, physicians and nurses are morally free to use the two surgical and pharmaceutical approaches when it appears the pregnancy will not resolve itself naturally. In doing so they witness to the Gospel of life in using their God-given talents to respect life even when it cannot be preserved.
Grogan serves as recording secretary of Cardinal George’s archdiocesan Bioethics Committee. He wrote this column in response to a column by Father Tad Pacholczyk, director of education at the National Catholic Bioethics Center.

http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2009/1108/3.aspx

Turretinfan said...

From Bellisario:Steve said, "Doesn’t Catholicism allow abortions in double effect situations?"

No it does not. If you understood anything about moral theology you would not have made that comment. Catholicism condemns abortion for any reason. We won't get into double effect and moral theology, that would be another debate. I think its too hard for Steve to grasp.


From Rome: CCC 2263 The legitimate defense of persons and societies is not an exception to the prohibition against the murder of the innocent that constitutes intentional killing. "The act of self-defense can have a double effect: the preservation of one's own life; and the killing of the aggressor. . . . The one is intended, the other is not."

The problem is that Bellisario, as usual, doesn't understand his own church's position. Roman Catholicism does, in fact, permit the taking of human life (including the life an unborn child) in double effect situations. An example one might see from a Romanist bio-ethicist would be the case where a woman needs chemo to live, but the chemo will have the foreseeable but unintended (undesired) result of killing the unborn child.

It's somewhat ironic that Bellisario claims: "I think its [sic] too hard for Steve [Hays] to grasp" and "as if I didn't know Catholic sources better than you [referring to Steve Hays] ever will?"

Perhaps Bellisario should do his homework rather than wasting his and our time demonstrating his ignorance of the basic moral teachings of his own church.

- TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

For what it's worth, I hadn't seen Steve's comments when I posted my response above. But the answer is the same.

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

"No it does not. If you understood anything about moral theology you would not have made that comment. Catholicism condemns abortion for any reason. We won't get into double effect and moral theology, that would be another debate. I think its too hard for Steve to grasp."

Catholic moral theology distinguish between direct and indirect abortion according to the double effect principle, viz.

"First, while the Church opposes all direct abortions, it does not condemn procedures which result, indirectly, in the loss of the unborn child as a 'secondary effect.' For example, if a mother is suffering an ectopic pregnancy (a baby is developing in her fallopian tube, not the womb), a doctor may remove the fallopian tube as therapeutic treatment to prevent the mother’s death. The infant will not survive long after this, but the intention of the procedure and its action is to preserve the mother’s life. It is not a direct abortion."

http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac0898.asp

steve said...

Matthew Bellisario said...

“You pull a quote out of context dealing with a nonspecific issue and then act like that refutes the specific I was talking about.”

The context is bioethics. In-vitro fertilization is one bioethical issue–among many.

“So you have to prove where the Church says that what I presented as being certain, is not certain. Quoting a theologian, that talks in generalities about some things in medical ethics which may as of yet have no certain answers has nothing to do with the specifics that I presented where the Church does teach with certitude…Cardinal Ratzinger never said that we cannot know anything outside of Scripture dealing with morality for certain.”

Now you’re backing down from your initial claim. You originally led with a blanket assertion about how Tradition enables us to determine what is right and wrong–over against sola Scriptura. You said:

“How do decide if something is moral or not if Scripture does not address it directly? Or, how do address moral issues if you think Scripture does not address a particular subject, despite what your forefathers like Calvin saw in Scripture such as the sins of impurity or contraception, which you now reject?…Hence Tradition is needed to determine what is moral and what is not, and it is needed to determine the proper understanding of His Word.”

Now, however, you’re retreating to the far weaker claim that, at best, Tradition only determines what is right or wrong in some cases, while leaving us to grope in the dark in so many other cases.

“First of we all we know with certitude that in-vitro fertilization is immoral. God says so by His oral Word, which comes through His only Church.”

Ratzinger didn’t appeal to oral tradition. Rather, he appealed to the experience of medical practitioners.

Matthew Bellisario said...

"Now, however, you’re retreating to the far weaker claim that, at best, Tradition only determines what is right or wrong in some cases, while leaving us to grope in the dark in so many other cases."

No I am not Steve, and what I said stands. The Catholic church does determine moral problems not addressed in Scripture, such as in-vitro fertilization with Oral Tradition. That is the argument. You quoted something from cardinal Ratzinger that is not even dealing with the topic being discussed, as I pointed out earlier.

Secondly, the law of double effect is not endorsing abortion you morons, the death of the fetus is the result of another medical procedure, so no, the Church is not endorsing an abortion procedure, it is acknowledging another bad outcome as a result of the medial procedure. This is not the Catholic Church approving of an abortion procedure by any stretch of the imagination. Turretin, do your own homework before you come over here making all kinds of foolish assumptions. Once again another cut and paste job with out any knowledge of the subject matter or context from which the text flows.

Matthew Bellisario said...

Steve, your cut and paste job also refutes your own argument. Did you not read the text before you did your cut and paste hatchet job?

"No one advances that an abortion is acceptable. These measures do not constitute an abortion."

Matthew Bellisario said...

Turretin said, "Perhaps Bellisario should do his homework rather than wasting his and our time demonstrating his ignorance of the basic moral teachings of his own church."

Did you read? No, keep cutting and pasting. snip, snip, snip...oops..

""No one advances that an abortion is acceptable. These measures do not constitute an abortion." USCCB text that Steve quoted, trying to tell me that the Catholic Church allows abortions. Are you finished yet throwing your powdered Creme puffs at me? So far you have done nothing but refute yourself over and over.

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