But .... where does it say that in the Bible?
I served as lector today and the reading was 1 Thessalonians 2:1-13. In it, St. Paul notes: And for this reason we too give thanks to God unceasingly, that, in receiving the word of God from hearing us, you received not a human word but, as it truly is, the word of God, which is now at work in you who believe.
No mention of reading the Bible.
The Church preceded the Bible by at least 30 years. The Church determined the canon of the Bible. If it wasn’t for the Church, we wouldn’t have the Bible. Do they think it just dropped out of the sky? Remember the time in history, most people couldn’t read. Jesus didn’t come here to be crucified and resurrected so a book could be written, he came and founded a Church and its still here, the Catholic Church.
I love how our separated brethren love to quote St. Paul in their discussions with Catholics. Paul was trying to prevent the various congregations he addressed from falling into heresy. He was trying to keep them Catholic.
We dont need anything beyond the Bible. — But .... where does it say that in the Bible?
“Well, the doctrine of sola Scriptura simply states that the Scriptures and the Scriptures alone are sufficient to function as the regula fide, the rule of faith, for the Church. All that one must believe to be a Christian is found in Scripture and in no other source. That which is not found in Scripture is not binding upon the Christian conscience. To be more specific, I provide the following definition. The Bible claims to be the sole and sufficient rule of faith for the Christian Church. The Scriptures are not in need of any supplement. Their authority comes from their nature as God-breathed revelation. Their authority is not dependent upon man, church or council. The Scriptures are self-consistent, self-interpreting and self-authenticating. The Christian Church looks to the Scriptures as the only and sufficient rule of faith and the Church is always subject to the Word and is constantly reformed thereby.
Now I want you to recognize that I am emphasizing that the doctrine of sola Scriptura is based upon the inspiration of Scripture. Now that term, inspiration, that you will find, for example, in II Timothy 3:16, is really not the best way of rendering the term. The Greek term, theopneustos, is best rendered as “God-breathed.” And in fact, in the New International Version, that is how it is rendered. In II Timothy 3:16 we read that “All Scripture is God-breathed and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for instruction, for training in righteousness, in order that the man of God might be complete, fully equipped for every good work.” We learn from this that Scripture’s authority is God’s authority. You don’t have Scriptural authority over here then God’s authority over here. You don’t have different authorities in the Church. The authority of the Church is one: God’s authority. And when God speaks in Scripture that carries His authority.
Notice, for example, from the words of Our Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 22 when he is talking with the Sadducees, who denied the resurrection, he says, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures, nor the power of God, for in the resurrection, they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are as the angels in Heaven. But concerning the resurrection of the dead have you not read what God spoke to you, saying ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.’” Please notice that from the Lord Jesus’ perspective that which was found in Scripture was God speaking and he held those men responsible for what God had said to them, even though what was spoken had been written a thousand years earlier. Scripture is God speaking to man. It is theopneustos. God-breathed...’
But there is a flip side as well. If more is required, then...
“Well, the Roman Catholic position must demonstrate that that the “oral tradition” that is supposed to exist not only contains revelation from God that differs in content from what is found in the New Testament, but that this “oral tradition” is theopneustos, that is, God-breathed, inspired. Without such a demonstration, the denial of sola Scriptura is empty and meaningless.”
Church fathers, like Luther or Calvin or others I respect, can make serious errors. Their words are helpful at times, and harmful in others. Only scripture is “God-breathed”.
When it is an additional teaching, such as the assumption of Mary, I don’t see value in getting worked up. I don’t believe it, but I don’t care if others do.
When the teaching is contrary, such as Purgatory or Indulgences, then it is important to point out that conflict.
I’ve read some of the church fathers lately. I find value in some, but there is ample error mixed in - as can be found in Luther’s writings. They add perspective, but it is critical to compare their teachings to scripture.