Friday, August 13, 2010

Whitaker's Seventh Argument

Whitaker's seventh argument in defense of Sola Scriptura needs no additional commentary:

Our seventh argument is taken from 1 Thess. ii. 13, where Paul addresses the Thessalonians thus: "We give thanks to God always, because that, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but (as it is in truth), the word of God [Greek text omitted] which also worketh effectually in you that believe." From this place I argue thus: If the Thessalonians, when they only heard Paul, received the doctrine of scripture as divine, and so embraced it, then, without the judgment of the church, the scripture ought to have a divine authority with us. But the former is true; for the Thessalonians had then heard of no prophecy or testimony of any church, but had only received the word from the lips of Paul: therefore also the latter. Ambrose writes thus upon that place: "They received the word with such devotion as to prove that they understood it to be the word of God." But whence could they understand it to be such? Certainly from the doctrine itself, and the testimony of the Holy Spirit; not from the authority of any church, or of the apostle himself. For what church could persuade the Thessalonians by the weight of its testimony to receive Paul, or assent to his discourses as divine? The apostle himself was unknown to them, and had nowhere any authority but on account of that doctrine, the minister and herald of which he was. Therefore, the doctrine itself gained for him all his credit and authority...So Acts xvii. 11, the Bereans, when they heard Paul, examined his teaching not by the judgment of the church, but by the standard of the scripture itself. It appears, therefore, that scripture of itself, without the testimony and authority of the church, hath a divine, canonical and authentic authority even in respect of us.

11 comments:

BillyHW said...

Lame, grasping at straws.

For the Eleven Billionth time, the authority of the Church and Scripture are not opposed to one another. Paul *was* a Church authority. He *was* the Magisterium.

John Bugay said...

Billy -- show us the word "Magisterium" in the Bible.

Matthew D. Schultz said...

BillyHW writes:

Lame, grasping at straws.

What's truly lame is a dismissive comment that doesn't deal with any of the substance of a post.

Jae said...

Then show us too where are the words "Bible" and "Holy Trinity" in the Scripture.

Is there any way to ever resolve the hermeneutical chaos and anarchy that exists within the Protestant church largely as a result of its adoption of radical individualism? Since no interpretive authority is higher than anybody else's (esp. James White's) then it rest upon any individual's to set his own version of truth. (guided by the same Holy Spirit of course!)

So thus, all these verses are meaningless if there is NO Unity that Christ and Paul attested:

Paul, in I Cor. 1:10:

1 Corinthians 1:10 "Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you ALL speak the SAME thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be PERFECTLY JOINED together in the SAME mind and in the SAME judgment."

Jn 16:13 - guided by Holy Spirit into ALL truth from DAY ONE!(all means- wholeness, fullness)

Matt. 16:17–19 "keys to the kingdom, bind on earth/heaven"

John 21:15–17 "love Me? Feed my sheep"

Jn 14:26 - Holy Spirit to teach & remind them of everything

Lk 10:16 - speak with Christ's own voice

1Tim 3:15 - Church called "pillar and foundation of truth"

1Jn 2:27 - anointing of Holy Spirit remains in you

Acts 15:28 - Apostles speak with voice of Holy Spirit

Mt 16:16 - first infallible pronouncement

Mt 28:20 - I am with you always

Lk 10:16 - He who hears you hears me

AA 6:10 - speak with voice of Holy Spirit

Acts 2:42 ... doctrine, community, sacred rite (bread).

Eph 5:25-26 ... Christ loved the Church.

Mt 16:18; 14:26 ... Christ protects Church.
Heb 13:17 ... obey.

Mt 18:17-18 ... church as final authority (bind on earth/heaven).

BONUS - Mt 23:2 ... Pharisees succeeded Moses (seat of Moses).

dtking said...

For the Eleven Billionth time, the authority of the Church and Scripture are not opposed to one another.

I'm sure this claim wouldn't impress Basil of Caesarea, who stated in his Preface on the Judgment of God

Basil of Caesarea (Ad 329-379): Liberated from the error of pagan tradition through the benevolence and loving kindness of the good God, with the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by the operation of the Holy Spirit, I was reared from the very beginning by Christian parents. From them I learned even in babyhood the Holy Scriptures which led me to a knowledge of the truth. When I grew to manhood, I traveled about frequently and, in the natural course of things, I engaged in a great many worldly affairs. Here I observed that the most harmonious relations existed among those trained in the pursuit of each of the arts and sciences; while in the Church of God alone, for which Christ died and upon which He poured out in abundance the Holy Spirit, I noticed that many disagree violently with one another and also in their understanding of the Holy Scriptures. Most alarming of all is the fact that I found the very leaders of the Church themselves at such variance with one another in thought and opinion, showing so much opposition to the commands of our Lord Jesus Christ, and so mercilessly rendering asunder the Church of God and cruelly confounding His flock that, in our day, with the rise of the Anomoeans, there is fulfilled in them as never before the prophecy, ‘Of your own selves shall men arise speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.’ Fathers of the Church, Vol. 9, Preface on the Judgment of God (New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc., 1950), p. 37.

Or Ambrose...

Ambrose (c. 339-97): Many times have the clergy erred; the bishop has wavered in his opinion; the rich men have adhered in their judgment to the earthly princes of the world; meanwhile the people alone preserved the faith entire. John Daillé, A Treatise on the Right Use of the Fathers (Philadelphia: Presbyterian Board of Publication, 1856), p. 197.
Latin text: Plerumque clerus erravit, Sacerdos mutavit sententiam, divites cum saeculi istius terreno rege senserunt; populus fidem propriam reservavit. In Psalmum David CXVIII Expositio, Sermo 17, §17, PL 15:1446.

louis said...

"We do not deny that it appertains to the church to approve, acknowledge, receive, promulge, commend the scriptures to all its members.... We do not, therefore, as the papists falsely say of us, refuse the testimony of the church, but embrace it.

"But we deny that we believe the scriptures solely on account of this commendation of them by the church. For we say that there is a more certain and illustrious testimony... that is to say, the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit, without which the commendation of the church would have with us no weight or moment....

"We gladly receive the testimony of the church, and admit its authority; but we affirm that there is a more certain, true, and august testimony than that of the church... the scripture... hath all its authority and credit from itself.... the internal persuasion of the Holy Spirit... without which the testimony of the church is dumb and inefficacious."

(pp 279-80).

Constantine said...

Jae writes,

Is there any way to ever resolve the hermeneutical chaos and anarchy that exists within the Protestant church largely as a result of its adoption of radical individualism?

I myself, am a big fan of the hermeneutical unity of the “one true church of Rome” as seen by their analysis of just one, key point – the papacy:

1. Vatican I – the infallible council declares that the “primacy” was give to Peter, in his person, alone, citing Matthew 16:18. And the primacy given to Peter was one of immediate “jurisdiction” over the whole church.
2. Archbishop Kenrick publishes a paper at the same council saying Catholics are precluded from using Matthew 16:18 in support of the papacy because it fails the requirements the Church has historically used for dogmatic proclamations.
3. Yves Cardinal Congar – one of the “architects” of Vatican II - declares, siding with a large number of Catholic theologians throughout history, that Peter’s confession of faith, not his person, is the “rock” of Matthew 16:18.
4. Fr. Richard McBrien – professor of theology at the Catholic University of Notre Dame – say “the terms primacy…and jurisdiction…are probably best avoided when describing Peter’s role in the New Testament. They are postbiblical, indeed, canonical, terms.”


So Jae, please tell me, is Vatican I right or the members of the Magisterium who disagree with it? Did the “infallible” pope err by invoking a standard for dogmatic proclamations that everyone knows is not allowed? Does the Catholic church allow heretical professors to teach and publish contrary to a single (mythical) hermeneutical standard?

Rome is every bit the mess it tries to proclaim that it isn’t.

dtking said...

My apologies for the multiple posts of the same context - the blog kept informing me that the post contained too many characters until I divided it up, and the blog posted what it informed me was too large.

James, please feel free to edit and delete the repeated context.

Matthew D. Schultz said...

Pastor King,

I'll clean up the comments. Please e-mail me (address can be found on my blogger profile) if I delete too much.

natamllc said...

BillyHW said:

For the Eleven Billionth time, the authority of the Church and Scripture are not opposed to one another. Paul *was* a Church authority. He *was* the Magisterium.

How then do you reconcile that with this?:::>

Gal 1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel--
Gal 1:7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Gal 1:11 For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man's gospel.
Gal 1:12 For I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.


Now, if Peter is the head of the Church, let's accept that premise for the moment then, shall we, that he is and not the Holy Spirit, then try to reason Paul's understanding of the Gospel with Peter's, here:::>

2Pe 3:13 But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.
2Pe 3:14 Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace.
2Pe 3:15 And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him,
2Pe 3:16 as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.
2Pe 3:17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability.
2Pe 3:18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.


Now, I digress and say, I suppose the reason you will argue 2 Peter is not to be considered an equal part of the canon of Scripture is precisely because you cannot argue your case unless we ignore the connection Peter established there between himself with Paul? :)

Either your gospel is the Gospel, the Gospel of Truth that sets men, women and children, boys and girls free; and ours is not and we are cursed? Or our Gospel is the Gospel of Truth prepared from all Eternity and you are now in jeopardy of being cursed while you hold to your argument!

I will hold here with Peter and Paul:

2Jn 1:6 And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it.
2Jn 1:7 For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. Such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist.
2Jn 1:8 Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward.
2Jn 1:9 Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.

James Swan said...

My apologies for the multiple posts of the same context


Well, many Romanists are not familiar with working with contexts, so perhaps they will at least read one the posts.