Don’t Treat the Bible Like a Harry Potter Spellbook

Ivan Latham, on the “Road to Damascus”, oh, wait! that was St. Paul. I mean, on the “Notes from Damascus”, points out the irony of casting out the Word of God in Sacred Tradition and replacing it with private interpretation. He says:

Notes From Damascus

The One Holy Apostolic Catholic Church came before the Bible as we know it. So this actually shows up the fallacy of a sola scripture approach, where everything has to be validated according to whether it is mentioned in the sacred text. Jesus did not say, ‘Go and write a book about everything I have said.’ No, rather He commanded us to go into all the world and preach the Good News to all nations. Initially this instruction was fulfilled via the Jewish scriptures, and the oral tradition. The Biblical canon was only approved much later. And yes, of course the sacred text is vital to the life of faith. It is far too neglected, and prayerful study of the Bible yields much spiritual fruit in the life of the faithful Catholic. However, parallel to Sacred Scripture runs the stream of Sacred Tradition which preceded it (2 Thessalonians 2:15)


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One comment

  1. De Maria

    Well put! To add my own two cents:

    It is very telling that Scripture does not say, “Go, read the Bible and learn what the Word of God says!” No.

    Scripture says to us:
    Hebrews 13:7
    Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSVCE)

    7 Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God; consider the outcome of their life, and imitate their faith.

    So, in fact, the Bible assumes that you learned your faith from your Priests or other Religious Leaders. It assumes that the Word of God was spoken to you.

    You might think this is rare. But Scripture repeatedly tells us that the Word of God is spoken to us:

    1 Thessalonians 2:13 And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers.

    Romans 10:14 But how are men to call upon him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher?


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