Can you provide examples (or point to resources) of particular teachings from the oral tradition of The Church that are not supported by or do not appear in Scripture which have doctrinal significance?
I’ve read much about the importance of the ‘Oral Tradition’ and have read your page on your site, but don’t see any examples of such teachings. All I see are exhortations as to the validity of those oral traditions, but no examples of what they actually are.
I am a Protestant who has a very good Catholic friend (and he and I have many productive conversations) and as I’ve said to him many times I can fully support any teaching from oral tradition that I can see justified by Scripture. But, if there are teachings of the oral tradition that are not supported by scripture or which perhaps even seem contradictory to scripture, then those I feel compelled to set aside.
I appreciate any assistance you can offer.
J. Salza: Mark, start with the canon of Scripture (the books that belong in the Bible). The Bible doesn’t tell you what the canon is, but knowing the canon is necessary for our salvation. The Catholic Church used the apostolic Tradition to determine the canon.
Other Traditions include the two natures of Christ, the two wills of Christ, the hypostatic union, the Trinity and other doctrines on God and Christology. None of these doctrines are expressly found in Scripture but are at the core of Christianity.
Mark: Hi again – could you explain one thing for me?
I don’t understand what you mean by your statement, “knowing the canon is necessary for our salvation.”?
J. Salza: Knowing what books belong in the Bible is necessary for salvation because if we didn’t know what books were inspired, we would mix up the inspired books with the heretical books. This means we would have Bible teaching both truth and error, and this would be detrimental to our salvation. So knowing the canon with certainty is essential, and the Bible doesn’t reveal it to us. The Church did. This is the principle of causality: an effect is never greater than its cause. If the canon is infallible, then the Church who determined it is also infallible.
John where in the Bible does it say we should pray for the dead
2 Mac 12:42 And so betaking themselves to prayers, they besought him, that the sin which had been committed might be forgotten. But the most valiant Judas exhorted the people to keep themselves from sin, forasmuch as they saw before their eyes what had happened, because of the sins of those that were slain.
12:43 And making a gathering, he sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection.
12:44 (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,)
12:45 And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them.
12:46 It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins.
John, nice reply.
Am really lagging behind and I wish to know more about my catholic faith so as to be able to defend it but I don’t know where I can get help from
Agnes, You can get plenty of help from the scripture, for this is our source for our practice of faith.I recommend the study of Paul’s epistles in the New Testament.
St Peter explained that Paul’s writings were difficult and confusing to understand. Protestants who try to interpret the rest of the Bible by starting at Paul differ on all sorts of essential doctrines because they lack the fullness of the handed down teachings and understood by the earliest fathers of the Church, who had the full teachings and the actual words of the Apostles ringing in their ears. Ignatius, Polycarp, and so many others who died for that faith they received. The Catholic faith is the summary of that united understanding along with Scripture.
Read the Baltimore Catechism. It is full of references to the Scriptures and explains the faith within the apostolic Tradition in which it was received and handed down.
” If the canon is infallible, then the Church who determined it is also infallible.” I’m a Catholic but I must admit, I’m shocked at this comment. I’m also shocked that you point to writings that were not made part of the Bible (but should have been in your opinion) as supporting evidence to your positions. By making these comments, you contradict yourself and betray your own logic. Is the Church infallible? If so, then their choice to exclude these writings could not have been a mistake…because after all, the Church is infallible. OR, the Church is indeed fallible and should have included the writings as you stated. Either way, your argument is fatally flawed. The Church is now and always has been comprised of men. Men are corruptible and unreliable by nature. As you point out, men have biases and agendas as well. So, to say the Church in infallible, is beyond ludicrous. I think we need only look at the Church in its present state to illustrate this point.