Monday, January 29, 2024

"Scripture Cannot Be Broken" DIS-Proves Protestant Sola Scriptura

Everyone's favourite Ruslan is unduly uncritical of every Protestant's favourite Gavin:

The REAL Reason Why I'm Not a Catholic or Orthodox Christian...
Bless God Studios | 24 Jan. 2024

2:20 He presumes that the Jewish Sanhedrin, up to Condemning Jesus was fallible.

Can you prove it?

For instance, can you prove that any given instance of the Jewish Sanhedrin, prior to the Crucifixion, deciding a thing in due form falls under what Jesus calls moral error in Matthew 15 or Mark 7?

2:46 He calls Apostolic Tradition and Apostolic Succession, and Papacy and Councils "post-Apostolic" ...

Read Matthew 28:20. The Apostles were told:
  • they had to teach all nations (see previous verses) all truths
  • they had therein the assistance of Jesus being with them at all times.

The people who personally heard these words have died, unless perhaps St. John the Beloved has been taken up like Henoch and Elias. This means that Jesus is working through His Apostles on Earth right now physically through other mortal people than the ones hearing this.

This means episcopacy and papacy and councils and the Apostolic Tradition that they guard are Apostolic, not post-Apostolic.

You must admit there is some organ that is today strictly speaking Apostolic in God's eyes, rather than post-Apostolic. Pretending that the NT Scripture is the only candidate for this that's left is pretty ad hoc. And it's certainly not in the 27 books of the NT either.

3:49 The Proof text given makes the Bible ontologically unique compared to other writings.

It doesn't pretend that the Church doesn't share an equal uniqueness compared to other communities.

II Peter 1:21 is no proof text for the Bible having an ontological uniqueness lacking to the Church.

Some like to consider that the uniqueness lies in Scripture being "Theopneust" ... indeed, Genesis and Apocalypse are Theopneust in a way that the Iliad or the Aeneid are not. And we have a proof text for that.

We also have a proof text that the Apostles, in their flesh and blood, were Theopneust. John 20. Verse 22. Who breathed on them? God. They received Whom? God. By what? By breathing.

That's the exact ontological uniqueness that the Church retains, Matthew 28:20, all days up to Doomsday.

4:03 Were the Apostles engaging in Divine Speech?

See Acts 5. Verse 3.

But Peter said: Ananias, why hath Satan tempted thy heart, that thou shouldst lie to the Holy Ghost, and by fraud keep part of the price of the land

Ananias wasn't trying to cheat the book of Moses, or lie to the book of Acts, he was lying to Peter.

4:16 "Cannot be broken" ...

If he called them gods, to whom the word of God was spoken, and the scripture cannot be broken;
[John 10:35]

What were the previous words of the passage? John 10.

31 The Jews then took up stones to stone him. 32 Jesus answered them: Many good works I have shewed you from my Father; for which of these works do you stone me? 33 The Jews answered him: For a good work we stone thee not, but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, maketh thyself God. 34 Jesus answered them: Is it not written in your law: I said you are gods?

The Protestant complaint against infallible Church is that it is "self idolatry" ... what was the Pharisaic complaint against Jesus, again?

In fact, it's not in the Torah, it's in the Psalms, so, Jesus is here showing the habit of calling all of the Tanakh "Torah" ...

I have said: You are gods and all of you the sons of the most High.
[Psalms 81:6]

If you read the psalm, it's an exhortation to judges, not to angels.

This means, King David is saying the Sanhedrin and similar judges are divine.

The things they were judging wrong on (according to the psalm) were single cases, not doctrinal issues.

If even a Sanhedrin of the Old Covenant was divine, how much more so a Council of the New Covenant?

4:53 You seem to equate Church authority today with "modern prophets" ... a Catholic would not make that equation.

St. Bridget telling a Swedish king to go on a Crusade against the Heathen in Novgorod or the seers of Fatima telling people to pray the Rosary and do penance for those who are not doing penance for themselves, these were prophets. They did not hold Church authority.

And obviously, they were prophets like Debbora was. In Scripture.

There was also an authority over the Christian Church in Scripture and if you believe that it is no longer there, you contradict Matthew 28:20.

Jesus is here adressing Peter, Andrew, James, John and seven more. This is clear from verse 16. He is adressing the highest level of authority he instituted within the disciples, whether you count that as "the twelve" (who were there minus Judas the traitor) or as "Peter" (who was after all one of the twelve and was among the hearers of these words).

Another sign He is giving this promise specifically to Church authority and not to all faithful in the Church simply as faithful, without any other distinction is, previous words:

Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

A nation so taught and so baptised becomes part of the Church, but is even so distinct from its teacher and baptiser. Armenians are not all of them Gregory the Lightbringer. And obviously, Gregory the Lightbringer is the one who was most principally doing what Jesus here told the Apostles to do.

Now, wiki has this very interesting passage:

"After discovering Gregory's true identity, Tiridates had him thrown into a deep pit well called Khor Virap for 14 years. Gregory was miraculously saved from death and released after many years with the help of Tiridates' sister Khosrovidukht. Gregory then converted the King to Christianity, and Armenia then became the first country to adopt Christianity as a state religion in 301 AD. Gregory, the Illuminator, then healed King Tiridates, who the hagiographical sources say had been transfomed into a boar for his sins, and preached Christianity in Armenia. He was consecrated bishop of Armenia at Caesarea, baptized King Tiridates and the Armenian people, and traveled throughout Armenia, destroying pagan temples and building churches in their place."

Basically makes him the Armenian (and earlier) equivalent of St. Patrick.

"Patrick studied in Europe principally at Auxerre, but is thought to have visited the Marmoutier Abbey, Tours and to have received the tonsure at Lérins Abbey. Saint Germanus of Auxerre, a bishop of the Western Church, ordained him to the priesthood.[41][42]"

Not just that, according to the French wiki:

"Une tradition tout aussi incertaine, la Vita sancti Patricii de Muirchú, le fait se rendre ensuite à Auxerre auprès de saint Germain, où il devient diacre puis évêque39. La durée de son séjour en Gaule (au maximum de 415 à 432) est sujette à débat24."

Why were Patrick and Gregory the Illuminator bishops? Why were they in Gaul and Caesarea when they became so?

Well, because there is this thing, that the bishops are what Jesus spoke of when promising to be with the Eleven all days meaning, like you become a man by being procreated by a man and a woman going back to Adam and Eve, you are a "man of God" (technical term!) by being ordained by a bishop going back to Jesus and the Eleven. Gregory and Patrick were in Caesarea and Gaul because ordination and episcopal consecration were not available in Armenia or Ireland. They were not available because the so far entirely pagan countries were not containing any local diocese where the Apostolic Succession was perpetuated.

5:39 Here I was just asking whether Mark 7 (Matthew 15) actually speaks of formal decisions of the kind mentioned in Matthew 23.

Do you have any proof of this, or is this like Trent says we must believe three things concerning Adam (obviously as a real and individual person, not personification of a larger group), in Session V, 1546; but lots of Catholic priests (or supposed such at worst) teach it's OK to believe Adam and Eve were not the only people on earth when they incurred Original Sin.

There is a difference between the formal decisions of authority and urban legends spread by men in authority.

So, could the Pharisees in Mark 7 have cited a formal decision of the Sanhedrin that the washing of hands before a meal always obliged, even if it was impractical, like when you are on a road, or were the Pharisees expressing their collective "personal" prejudice in Mark 7?

In the latter case, you have no disproof of the Sanhedrin having been infallible up to condemning Jesus. In the former case, you maybe should start digging into the evidence for that, rather than just throwing it around.

6:28 While Tovia Singer accesses an Oral Law that's by now since soon 2000 years adulterated by the rejection of Jesus, perhaps you could ask him if the Oral Torah says:
  • one must wash the hands no matter where one is, even if one has no water, before eating
  • or, if one cannot, one must be unclean so as to be unfit to receive religious teaching.

That was basically what the Pharisees were insinuating in the Mark 7 situation. But did they have a formal decision of the Sanhedrin for it?

Is it in the Mishna as part of the Traditions from Moses on Mount Sinai?

6:38 Note, in Galatians 1:8, St. Paul is appealing to the Depositum fidei, but not to Scriptura.

He is in fact, in context, "the one we preached to you" appealing to precisely Oral Tradition / Traditio non scripta.

7:04 Yes, the Church does.

The Apostles were Theopneust. John 20. They were entrusted with all truth to all nations, via their successors. Matthew 28.
The Church (not the Scriptures) are Pillar and Ground of Truth. I Tim 3.
The Oral Tradition (not the Scriptures) test the words of possible "pillars of the Church". Galatians 1.
Tradition, whether Oral or written in a Canonic Book, is the faith one must stand fast by. II Thess. 2.
Scripture perfects a "man of God" who has received Oral Tradition about the faith in Jesus Christ. II Tim 3.

To state that the Church does not have anything even comparable to Scripture as infallibility is concerned is to contradict Scripture.

A Proestant could argue "yes, oral tradition in the Apostolic age was certainly binding, but by now it's so diluted, we need to look solely to the NT books as genuine expressions of it" — an argument I have seen made. But that in itself contradicts the promise in Matthew 28:20.

7:13 "these were given directly by the Apostles"

Stating their successors are not just in some jurisdictional way, but ontologically, inferior to them is to contradict Matthew 28:20.

"while the Scriptures were being written"

And we know for a fact that the tradition on OT Exegesis which Paul gave Tim and Jesus gave the Disciples on the road to Emmaus is not among these writings, except in very small portions.

If you add up the NT passages that say ... Matthew 1:22—23, John 19:36—37 ... you will not have the subject of 12 km worth of walking or 32 km worth of walking, whichever was the distance they were making. (60 stades or according to one manuscript 160 stades).

This furthermore shows that the arrangement God intended for this time in relation to ensuing times of the Church do not involve the plan of "everything is sooner or later written down, or it's fallible, in retrospect".

Note also, he presents this as a common sense argument, he does not cite any Scripture, OT or NT, for it.

7:20 "we don't have these oral traditions"

This is the disputed point. I say Gavin Ortlund here contradicted the promise of Christ.

"already in the II C. Christians disagreed on basic historic facts"

Two solutions, each applicable on diverse matters:
1) one solution is, the historic fact is so "basic" that it's not doctrinal, therefore is not the point of infallibility
2) and another solution is, the disagreeing people were divided into one faction faifthful and another faction inattentive or unfaithful to tradition, but tradition won, because that's what God wanted for His Church.

7:23 "like the date of Easter"

W a i t ... no, that's not a historical fact.

It's a historical fact that Jesus was crucified on a Friday within the Jewish Easter and rose on a Sunday / Lord's Day / 1st day of the week, also within it.

It's a historical fact that the Jewish easter is tied to the evening after the 14th day of Nisan.

It's a very simple calendaric fact, that you cannot commemorate both equally, because the Hebrew month of Nisan is not tied to week days.

You cannot both have Maundy Thursday on a Thursday each year, and on the 14th of Nisan each year. Different choices were made. By the time of Irenaeus, the different choice in Rome and in Asia minor were "traditions" with a small t, neither of them was Apostolic Tradition in the doctrinal sense.

This means Gavin Ortlund overlooks very basic distinctions between knowledge and commemoration, or between doctrine and disciple.

7:35 I think the difference there "still is" refers to on whether Maundy Thursday and Easter Sunday were 14th and 17th Nisan (as Catholics claim, and I think Armenian Apostolic agree) or they were 13th and 16th Nisan, since Caerularius claimed Jesus was crucified on the 14th.

Caerularius claims [about]:
And it was the parasceve of the pasch, about the sixth hour, and he saith to the Jews: Behold your king.
[that /it]
a) happened on the sixth day hour of Good Friday
b) "parasceve of the pasch" refers to the 14th of Nisan, not to any Friday within the Pasch.

As a consequence he condemned as Judaising heresy, also shared by the "accursed Armenians" / Monophysites to use unleavened bread.

There are three solutions. For the Roman Catholic view.

a) the Last Supper was done first or second night hour and the above judgement by Pilate was about midnight, which is what sixth night hour would mean
b) or "parascheve of the pasch" refers to a Friday within the Jewish Easter
c) or Jesus and the Temple started Nisan on different days, Jesus saw the new moon one evening earlier than the Temple.

And even this is not dogma. The only thing that's dogmatic from the Catholic point of view is that both leavened and unleavened bread is, in reference to each rite, valid matter for the Eucharist. Cardinal Humbert did not ask Caerularius to celebrate in unleavened bread, but to punish the crowd that had committed sacrilege about Hosts in unleavened bread present in Constantinople due to priests of the Latin rite. That's what Caerularius refused.

7:54 It is very ironic that when he pretends to analyse that the NT shows no hint of post-Apostolic infallibility, he screenshots Titus 1, which gives us the precise mechanism by which Apostolic Tradition is usually transmitted correctly to later generations.

8:02 He bases lots of weight on that Augustine quote.

He pretends that "later councils" correcting "earlier ones" proves that "ecumenical councils were not infallible to St. Augustine."

Does the Latin of this period have words for "explicitate" or "complete" (as in complete a message already given by adding extra information)?

I don't think so. So his use of "correct" should arguably simply say that the later council adds info left out in the earlier one. There were exactly two councils at his time. Nicaea I, Constantinople I.

There is no doctrinal point at which Constantinople I says "no, Nicaea I was wrong" ... there are points at which it said "we must add this" ...

So, even if Augustine when writing this imagined there was a point on which Nicaea I was wrong, on which Constantinople I corrected it, this would have been a personal opinion not brought out by the facts.

It's also ironic that in pretending there are no Infallible Authorities after the last Apostle died, none left to us except NT books, he is not quoting any NT book, he's giving a series of quotemines from Tradition. [actually just precisely one quotemined quote]

8:12 Here, Gavin Ortlund presumes that II Vatican Council is a real Council of the Church.

Or that counting it as such is the Catholic position.

8:33 "can be misinterpreted by virtually everybody for 100's of years"

This is not the sole reception of the Council of Florence.

There were theologians holding to the position of St. Thomas that a person who has been insufficiently instructed is not accountable for missing the one true Church, and under certain circumstances might gain forgiveness for the sins he's accountable for. But nevertheless, insufficient instruction and simply being incapable of thinking it through like someone with Down's, is not supposed to be the situation of an adult whom one is talking to. An adult in 19th C. Norrland countryside, well, that's possible. But an adult you are reaching over the internet, who gives intelligent content. No. Dito if you hold a learned correspondence by letter with James VI and I or with an Eastern Orthodox.

B U T, again, this critique of Councils or Traditions is equally a critique about Scripture. While it would still be infallible, it would have also been misinterpreted, on precisely Ortlund's view (and specifically about the Church), for centuries.

8:41 "fallible human beings" / "God and His word"

Any NT book:
  • was written by the hand of someone who, as the person he was, was a fallible human being;
  • was accepted as God's word by at first one and then more local Churches, also consisting materially of persons who, as the persons they were, were fallible human beings.

This is not the Atheist argument that the Bible isn't the word of God.

It's more like "either you're Atheist or you're Catholic or you're inconsistent" ... Kristi Burke simply took Gavin Ortlund's outlook, also obviously, Ray Comfort's outlook on the Council of Trent, or of Florence, and then applied the exact same logic to the writing of Luke or Ephesians.

Yes, Luke, like Eugene IV, was:
  • human
  • still "in via" — i e not yet having died
  • therefore in and of himself fallible.

If we admit God could grant him infallibility, for the occasion of a Gospel giving infallible and inerrant truth, why would or could God not grant a council the same, for a very comparable purpose? If God couldn't or wouldn't grant the council or the Pope that, why was St. Luke special?

9:15 "not the only authority, but the only infallible authority"

Well, sounds like a copout to me.

Now, is it the only authority that's:
  • binding
  • on all?

Or can other authority also be, fallible or not:
  • binding
  • on all?

If a JW says "why should I believe the Trinity, the word is not there in the Bible, and you said yourself that Nicaea and the Creed have no infallible authority" can you say he is still bound (and as long as he remains JW, condemned) by it?

If no, how can you define Christianity?
If yes, how is that humane, unless God grants infallibility to the authority that's binding on all?

9:35 So, you are a fallible human person. Charles Taze Russell was a fallible human person.

Why should your testing of the Trinity whether it's in Scripture or not be worth more than his?

Or good people going to heaven when they die (after purgatory, which it seems you and he agree to deny, for most except a few real diehard saints)?

Or hardened sinners going to extinction rather than eternal torment?

I have an answer. St. Athanasius and a few more, totalling 318 for the bishops, had Apostolic succession from the men on whom God breathed in John 20:22.

They did not have personal infallibility for every move they do in private, but they had infallibility collectively, especially when confirmed by the legates of Pope St. Sylvester.

10:35 The same goes obviously for whether the Rosary or your prayer app is best for getting transformed inside out, by God.

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