Pope Benedict: Bible Cannot Be Taken Literally
#1

Another spin on Verbum Domini

Link to article - http://www.thetrumpet.com/?q=7640.6221.0.0

Quote:Pope Benedict: Bible Cannot Be Taken Literally
November 15, 2010 | From theTrumpet.com

In his latest treatise, Pope Benedict XVI reverts to medieval teaching.


Hard on the heels of the recent Vatican statement declaring that the Jews have no scriptural claim to the Promised Land comes another papal shocker.

It is contained in the pope’s most recent “apostolic exhortation,” Verbum Domini (“The Word of the Lord”), issued on November 11.

In this lengthy “exhortation,” the pope “has issued a lofty and impassioned plea for everyone in the church to rediscover the Bible” (cna/ewtn News, November 11). But it’s more than an “impassioned plea” from this pope to his parishioners. It’s a direct attack on all who believe the inerrancy of the literal Scriptures as inspired by God!

In direct relation to the study of the Bible, Pope Benedict has “criticized ‘fundamentalist’ or ‘literalist’ interpretations and urged renewed appreciation for the symbolic and spiritual interpretation techniques used by the ancient fathers of the church” (ibid., emphasis mine).

In a most outlandish pontification, Benedict declared, “An authentic interpretation of the Bible must always be in harmony with the faith of the Catholic Church.”

This latest declaration by the pope tracks right back to his double endorsement of the claim that the Roman Catholic Church is the only true church.

At the time that the pope made that startling claim, Fox News, among other sources, reported, “For the second time in a week, Pope Benedict xvi has corrected what he says are erroneous interpretations of the Second Vatican Council, reasserting the primacy of the Roman Catholic Church and saying other Christian communities were either defective or not true churches” (July 10, 2007).

Thus, having declared all Christian denominations other than Roman Catholicism illegitimate, having endorsed recently a Vatican statement that the Jews have no valid scriptural claim to the Promised Land, the pope now has reasserted the medieval stance that only the interpretation of Scripture by the Roman Catholic Church has authenticity.

That is a blatant papal lie that the very Scriptures themselves oppose!

Your Bible clearly declares, first and foremost, that “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation” (2 Peter 1:20).

It further declares that “all scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). There’s no instruction here to resort first to any “symbolic and spiritual interpretation techniques used by the ancient fathers of the church”!

Those “interpretation techniques” as applied over the centuries have led to many contradictory interpretations of Scripture, even within Roman Catholicism. But Jesus Christ plainly said “the scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35). The Bible does not contradict itself!

It is not for the pope, it is not for any of his priests, it is not for man at all to interpret the Scriptures based on any particular religious ideology!

There’s only one power that can unlock the plain, straightforward meaning of Scripture. That is the power of the mind of God alone, exerting His influence directly on the mind of an individual by the power of His Holy Spirit.

Jesus Christ Himself, the Word of God personified, declared that when the Holy Spirit comes into the mind of an individual, it reveals all things. He called it “the Spirit of truth, [which] the world cannot receive, because it seeth [it] not, neither knoweth [it]” (John 14:17).

Christ called the Holy Spirit the “Comforter” (John 16:7). It is a revelatory Spirit, the Spirit of truth—actually a portion of God’s own supreme intellect embedded in the mind of a converted Christian. Christ declared that when it is given by the Father to a servant of God, it “will guide you into all truth … and [it] will shew you things to come” (verse 13).

cna/ewtn News describes “The heart of Verbum Domini” as comprising “a long and often technical discussion of ‘hermeneutics,’ or the proper method for interpreting the sacred texts.”

The reality is that Jesus Christ, the very Author of the Word of God, gave us the proper method for understanding the Bible. We read of the direct experience of His original disciples, from which the original apostles were ordained who in turn formed the very foundation of the one true Church. Of their experience with the resurrected Jesus Christ, they intoned, “Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?”

It is thus the living Jesus Christ, the true Head of His one true Church, who opens up the Word of God to us by the power of God’s Holy Spirit!

Yes it takes dedicated study to grow in understanding the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15; Isaiah 28:10, 13). But, in reality, the Bible interprets itself!

Why do men insist on trying to interpret the Bible?

A quarter of a century ago, Herbert Armstrong gave the answer (Plain Truth, November 1983):

The Scriptures are profitable for the purpose of reproving and correcting us. But we resent being reproved and corrected. How many people do you know who are even willing to be corrected where they are in error—to be reproved for the wrong things they do?

People do not like to be reproved and corrected. They love praise and flattery. But reproof and correction they surely hate.

That’s why it is so hard for so many people to understand the Bible and to agree on just what it says. The Bible is God’s great spiritual mirror. It shows up every flaw in our thinking and reveals every spot on our characters. It pictures us as we really are—as God sees us, not as we like to think we are or to have other men look upon us.

That’s the plain and simple truth.

Using the Scriptures to underpin his argument, Herbert Armstrong further stated:

“For the word of God,” we read in Hebrews 4:12, “is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword”—it cuts deep, both ways—“and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Yes, it opens up and lays bare the inner man.

Too often men have applied some different meaning to the scriptures that reproved them. They have passed right over some scriptures that corrected and rebuked them. Instead they studied diligently to find some other scripture into which they could read a meaning that would justify their course of action.

That is how men began, centuries ago, to interpret the Bible. And so God’s Word has become perverted, twisted, wrested, distorted. And almost every false and counterfeit meaning imaginable is read into it instead of seeing the natural meaning—the plain, simple meaning God intended.

Today we have hundreds of interpretations of the Bible. But you never hear of hundreds of interpretations of a biology textbook. Why? Because biology textbooks do not rebuke and correct men.

Instead of acknowledging the truth, repenting of the sin, having it legally justified by the blood of Christ, men seek to justify their own acts by perverting the sacred and holy Word of God.

As Melanie Phillips recently mused, the Vatican today, under this pope, may be taking “a giant step backwards into a darker age”—an age when the Vatican dictated that the Roman Catholic Church alone was the sole authority for interpretation of the Bible!

Could it be that this pope is in reality seeking to hide what inerrant Scripture reveals as to the true nature of the religious body he leads, its true beginnings, and its prophesied end? Hide the truth by insisting on the application of the interpretation techniques imposed by the “ancient fathers of the church” and thus interpreting, or rather wresting, the Scriptures to suit the whim and the will of the Vatican? (2 Peter 3:16).

You need to allow the Bible to interpret itself on this burning question and all others.

Read our booklet Daniel—Unsealed at Last! for insight into, and for the biblical answers to, this question. •

Ron Fraser’s column appears every Monday.
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#2
Quote:Could it be that this pope is in reality seeking to hide what inerrant Scripture reveals as to the true nature of the religious body he leads, its true beginnings, and its prophesied end?

Oh please, pray tell. What is the Catholic Church's true nature and beginnings and it's end?
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#3
Who is this yahoo?  He speaks as if this is something the Church has never said before.  He should check St. Augustine...
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#4
Quote: In direct relation to the study of the Bible, Pope Benedict has “criticized ‘fundamentalist’ or ‘literalist’ interpretations and urged renewed appreciation for the symbolic and spiritual interpretation techniques used by the ancient fathers of the church” (ibid., emphasis mine).

In a most outlandish pontification, Benedict declared, “An authentic interpretation of the Bible must always be in harmony with the faith of the Catholic Church.”

This guy who writes at the Strumpet is a wanker.  Of course, literalist interpretations of the Bible can be criticized, that's how protestant weirdos like this guy lord it over their congregations by creating an atmosphere of infallibilism surrounding their persons.
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#5
(11-17-2010, 11:33 AM)Augstine Baker Wrote:
Quote: In direct relation to the study of the Bible, Pope Benedict has “criticized ‘fundamentalist’ or ‘literalist’ interpretations and urged renewed appreciation for the symbolic and spiritual interpretation techniques used by the ancient fathers of the church” (ibid., emphasis mine).

In a most outlandish pontification, Benedict declared, “An authentic interpretation of the Bible must always be in harmony with the faith of the Catholic Church.”

This guy who writes at the Strumpet is a wanker.  Of course, literalist interpretations of the Bible can be criticized, that's how protestant weirdos like this guy lord it over their congregations by creating an atmosphere of infallibilism surrounding their persons.

It looks like we've found some common ground. 
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#6
It is impossible to interpret the bible literally.  You need to understand and have studied ancient history and know the traditions and customs of the people of that era.  You need to know their beliefs and writings of that time.  There is nothing new about the Catholic church saying that we can't interpret the bible as individuals.  You need to be a biblical scholar. 
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#7
(11-17-2010, 11:26 AM)Beware_the_Ides Wrote: Thus, having declared all Christian denominations other than Roman Catholicism illegitimate, having endorsed recently a Vatican statement that the Jews have no valid scriptural claim to the Promised Land, the pope now has reasserted the medieval stance that only the interpretation of Scripture by the Roman Catholic Church has authenticity.


Damn, don't you hate it when the Church re-hashes old junk from the middle ages. Why can't they just drop doctrines and adopt new ones every so often like us Protestants?
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#8
Protestant Joe Wrote:That is a blatant papal lie that the very Scriptures themselves oppose!

Your Bible clearly declares, first and foremost, that “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation” (2 Peter 1:20).

The supreme irony.

These people must be either stupid or illiterate.
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#9
Quote:That is a blatant papal lie that the very Scriptures themselves oppose!

Your Bible clearly declares, first and foremost, that “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation” (2 Peter 1:20).
Quote:You need to allow the Bible to interpret itself on this burning question and all others.

Read our booklet Daniel—Unsealed at Last! for insight into, and for the biblical answers to, this question. •

Oh my, yes, indeed, the supreme irony.  There is no private interpretation.  The Bible interprets itself.  And by the way, read our booklet to understand the Bible.

Pax,
Jesse

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#10
It really depends what passage of Scripture that your reading, there are many that can be taken literally, I take Genesis literally because i see nothing that proves to me that it can be contradicted , i also take John 6 literally on the Eucharist, I hope the Pope isn't saying we cant take that literally. Im sure he didnt say this about the Bible the way the poster of this thread implies.
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