Thursday, February 10, 2011


A large portion of the Christian world believes in the theory of “Bible Alone” or Sola Scriptura. The idea in the most basic of terms is that the Bible is sort of a “How To” manual and that all that one needs to do is read the Bible (under the influence of the Holy Spirit) and that one will come to know truth. In my book the 500 year experiment has failed. The most glaring evidence for this is that there are thousands of Protestant denominations, many at odds with opposing positions on key tenants of the faith, but all claiming to be lead by the Holy Spirit and containing all truth.

There are many reasons for this but here is one given by a priest recently.

Interpret this sentence: “I never said you stole money.”

What did this sentence mean to you?

Read this sentence again out loud in with the following emphasis added:

I never said you stole money.
I never said you stole money.
I never said you stole money.
I never said you stole money.
I never said you stole money.
I never said you stole money.

Each reading completely changes the meaning of the text. What did the author have in mind when he wrote it? Well, it is helpful to have an authority that states “this is what he meant.” This is like the “international prototype of the kilogram; a cylindrical chunk of platinum-iradium kept in a safe at Sevres in France” reported today in the Plain Dealer. This chunk of metal is designed to always bring us back to the exact measurement of what a kilogram is should we go astray.

Tradition is our prototype of interpretation of Sacred Scripture. What was true today was true yesterday and will be true tomorrow. Truth cannot be determined by popular vote or current trends in our culture. The Holy Spirit cannot say one thing one day, (birth control is a sin) and something else the next (abortion is a right.)

Today the Catholic Church stands virtually alone in the teaching that was taught by St. Peter, by St. Sebastian, by St. Francis, by the Church Fathers, by Saint Scholastica, by Pope John Paul II, by (hopefully) your parish priest, and will be taught by your children. Tradition stands as a great gift and not a burden. It keeps us on track.


Anonymous said...

whatsa "500 experiment" ?


Fr. V said...

Tried to push out today's post quickly and made a few mistakes which I hope have been corrected now. Sorry all!

Mrs. O said...

I like the analogy. I played that game with my sister who was a district manager at the time and she was explaining why she can never discuss some things via email, etc. especially given the fact that some do not know proper English now.

Sarah Oldham said...

Brilliantly said!