To be a Roman Catholic involves accepting tradition that is declared infallible, given by a God who cannot make mistakes, by the Church and scripture (the Bible) as the truth that God wants us to believe. This kind of tradition is spelled with a capital T. It and the Bible have equal authority. When tradition is being questioned the Church responds by making a dogma of it to protect it so it becomes more infallible than before. Funny that the Church has infallible tradition and was unable to officially have an inerrant Bible but had one, the Vulgate, with many corruptions and deletions and insertions? The Bibles the Church has depended on in the past prove that it is not infallible.

Contrary to the teaching of the Roman Church the only thing that Christian revelation says has the right to tell us what God wants us to believe and do is the Bible. The only Bible texts that are cited as proofs by non-Catholics to prove that the Bible is the only rule of faith are, Matthew 15:1-12; Luke 16:29; John 20:31 and Acts 17:11 and 1 Thessalonians 5:21 and 2 Timothy 3:16, 17 and Hebrews 1:1-3.

Romans has Paul telling the believers in Jesus in Rome that they were completely good and complete in their knowledge of the faith and fit to guide anybody. While this does not say scripture alone has authority, it does say the early Church had all knowledge. Anything then that cannot be clearly traced back to the early Church is to be rejected. That means the papacy is out! And prayers to Mary as something special! They are out too!
The Apostle in Galatians 3:28 wrote, "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus." The distinctions that are so important to most people should be left outside the worshipping Church that comes together in Jesus. Thus there should be no priests and bishops and popes with their dignities and ranks and alleged power of infallibility. So what is infallible then?  Scripture.
Acts 1:1 has the writer saying he wrote a first book that covered all that Jesus said and did. He is referring to the Gospel of Luke. Nobody thinks he meant literally all. He meant all we need to know. There is no contradiction with the John gospel which says Jesus did things that are not written about. Luke covers moral and ethical material that John leaves out. Luke obviously would not have considered the stories in John which he does not have to matter. John is in a way a denial that Luke has value.
The Bible being sufficient for salvation does not mean that doctrines such as the virgin birth of Jesus need to be known about for salvation even if the Bible teaches the virgin birth doctrine. An inspired book that contains all the basics of the gospel of John can be sufficient. But what about the rest of the Bible? It isn't needed yes but that doesn't mean it is not inspired. It doesn't mean the whole Bible isn't the only word of God and sufficient.
The Gospel of John has Jesus saying that we must believe in him to have eternal life and that he who believes has eternal life. The John author never says that belief means belief that is acted out as well as just believed. His Jesus speaks as if he means mere belief. When that is the case, the gospel teaches salvation by belief alone without good works or sacraments as taught by many at the Protestant Reformation. This proves that the only candidate for being an additional source of the word of God, Catholic tradition, is in fact only the word of man and is to be dismissed for it contradicts and opposes that gospel message.
This gospel also says that Jesus is the bread of life and we must eat his body and drink his blood to have eternal life. It does not mention the last supper so this tells us not to read anything eucharistic or to do with communion into what he said.

Acts 17:11 praises the Bereans for listening to what Paul said and checking him out by studying the Old Testament in case his doctrine was false. The Old Testament and the teaching of the New which was just verbal teaching at that time must then be the sole rule of faith and practice for Christians. They tested Paul though he was an apostle and as good as the twelve (2 Corinthians 12:11). This implies that all verbal teaching – even apostolic - must be tested for conformity to scripture. Only written scripture has ultimate and supreme authority that must never be criticised. The Bible totally contradicts the Romish view that tradition and Catholic teaching is equal in authority to scripture.
Colossians 1 says,

24 Now I rejoice in what I am suffering for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.

25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness—

26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the Lord’s people.

27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

28 He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ.

29 To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.

He means he has to suffer to do the rest of the work of Jesus which is to spread the gospel and states that he teaches everybody and admonishes  with all wisdom.The goal is to present everybody as fully mature in Jesus. The early Church then claimed to have the complete truth needed for one to be as wise and holy as humanly possible. This makes it possible that the Church put all that truth into the Bible. The early Church having all the truth denies the Catholic doctrine, "We admit that the early Church did not mention much Catholic doctrine. We hold that it had the seeds. The doctrines had to be clarified by the Catholic Church. They developed."
1 Thessalonians 5:21 says that Christians must prove all things and hold on to what is good. This eliminates oral tradition for it can prove nothing and puts revelation firmly in the written word of God. One can’t add written tradition to this because nobody would know when to stop and there would be too much to prove. It wouldn’t be that hard to prove a book of scripture is God’s word if the canon was shut. Oral tradition was originally used in the early Church but it was monitored by the apostles who gave the tradition. Obviously oral tradition would be dangerous after they were gone. Nothing in the Bible indicates that tradition that was not monitored by the apostles had authority therefore Roman Catholicism is wrong to say tradition is the word of God like the Bible.

2 Timothy 3:16 says that all scripture is inspired of God and gets you ready for any good work. The original says breathed out by God. Archer in his Encyclopaedia of Bible Difficulties proves that this is the correct translation (page 416). Some say it says every scripture is inspired by God but that leaves things open for those who want to teach that there are some bits that are not meant to be taken as binding. But at the same time, every scripture could be everything in the Bible. In all things we must take the safe side, so we must assume that the whole Bible is meant especially when the Bible never advances the notion of partial inspiration. God would not keep bits from error without saying they are free from error unlike the rest.

2 Peter 1 says that the scriptures are totally reliable and their words spoken by God as much as the words that you would hear from his audible voice would be. When scripture is that god-breathed it follows that it has the final say and is the supreme authority.
2 Timothy 3:16 which is attributed to Paul must be read in the backdrop of 1 Corinthians 15:1-2 where Paul is clear that salvation is based on the people keeping to the word as Paul taught them. He did not mention any other apostle and stated his authority was enough. The complete revelation then existed in the days of Paul. This means the word was finished even if not all written down yet.

The verse says that scripture has the good man ready for every good work.  Read that in the light of 1 Corinthians chapter 6.

1 If any of you has a dispute with another, do you dare to take it before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the Lord’s people?

2 Or do you not know that the Lord’s people will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases?

3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!

4 Therefore, if you have disputes about such matters, do you ask for a ruling from those whose way of life is scorned in the church?

5 I say this to shame you. Is it possible that there is nobody among you wise enough to judge a dispute between believers?

6 But instead, one brother takes another to court—and this in front of unbelievers!

This is clear that early Christians had a thorough knowledge of right and wrong and there is no room to argue that it needed developing or progress.

In the Gospel of John, you will read of Jesus stressing that he says only what God told him.

The Bible says that all of it is inspired by God and useful for correcting error so that the reader would be “thoroughly equipped for every good work” in 2 Timothy 3:16, 17. It personalises scripture, talks as if it is a person because it is God speaking to you in the words of scripture. The book is the voice of God. It says the scriptures make you wise meaning you will be wise just with the scriptures alone. The scriptures are sufficient – they might not answer every individual question but you know enough. The verses say scripture is able to make you wise and prepare you, it is an ability of scripture.

The scripture would not equip anyone for every good work unless it contains all we need to know. Revealing God’s truth is a good work so it is meant as well as other kinds of good works. If it had meant just non-evangelistic good works it would have specified them and the context puts no limit on the meaning. The Bible emphasises that God comes first and God alone matters and is to be loved with others being loved only because it is his will. Thus, any good work that was not done to bring glory to God and to excite interest in his gospel and word was really a bad work. This proves that the verse is saying that the Bible is all that is needed in matters pertaining to faith or morals.

Some protest that the verse does not prove the sufficiency for it refers to the Old Testament alone. In the preceding verse, Paul, or whoever wrote this, ponders about the Old Testament. But it is possible for him to stop meaning it alone and then to move to meaning all God’s writings including the ones since then. By no stretch of the imagination could the Old Testament be said to be sufficient. Jesus said that he came to improve and fulfil it. The letter-writer did not mean the Old Testament alone but whatever God had written since as well or will write. He said all scripture which just means all scripture that God will send. The writer is not talking about the extent of scripture or what books are scripture but of the nature of scripture.

Catholicism answers that St Joseph of Cupertino was far from bright and knew just about nothing on the teaching of the Church but knew all he needed to become a saint. She says that this verse just means that some of the doctrines of the Bible are sufficient to get you into Heaven not that it contains all God requires you to believe. But the letter-writer is not writing to dunces and the author does not mean, “all the good works you can do”, but, “all the good works you should do”. There is a sense in which even the person with little intelligence and education should know all good.

Hebrews 1:1-3 says that God in the past spoke to mankind in many different ways but through prophets but in these last days he speaks to us through his Son and by him. This tells us that instead of listening to prophets anymore we must listen only to Jesus. This implies that the apostles did not function like prophets but only told what was known to be the teaching of Jesus Christ. This implies a rejection of St Paul who did function like a prophet and who ignored the historical Jesus. It tells us that there is no new doctrine or prophet necessary. It tells us that things must be accepted not because the apostles said it but because it is known to be Christ’s doctrine which totally eliminates the Catholic reliance on new revelations and oral tradition that supposedly existed from the time of Jesus’ ministry.

Atheists adore the fact that the Bible is the only lawful Christian deposit of doctrine for it makes Christianity easier to refute. Just prove a contradiction in the Bible and Christianity is disproved.


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