Category Archives: Bible Stories

Apostolic Succession as Seen in the Jerusalem Council

Apostolic Succession as Seen in the Jerusalem CouncilSaint Matthias, from ‘Christ and the Apostles’, Friedrich Herlin, 1499
Saint Matthias, from ‘Christ and the Apostles’, Friedrich Herlin, 1499 Apostolic Succession as Seen in the Jerusalem Council Here is a compelling biblical argument for an infallible Church, and against sola Scriptura. By Dave Armstrong, January 15,2017

The standard Catholic apologetics argument from the Bible for apostolic succession is the selection of Matthias to succeed Judas (Acts 1:16-26). That includes taking note that the word for “office” in 1:20 is episkopos: the word for “bishop.” Thus, we have some sort of equation of apostles and bishops, which is necessary, for we believe that bishops are indeed the successors of (but not identical to) the apostles.

This very day, in dialogue with a Protestant on Facebook, I stumbled upon a “new” argument for succession from Scripture that had never occurred to me before in my 26 years of doing Catholic apologetics (I love when that happens!). I put “new” in quotes because I’m sure someone else has thought of this (“nothing new under the sun”), but for me it’s new, and I did come up with it on my own, even if others have taught it in the past. Dialogue and its intellectual challenge has a way of bringing about such wonderful discoveries. read more

The 7 Weirdest Bible Stories They Didn’t Teach You in Sunday School

The 7 Weirdest Bible Stories They Didn’t Teach You in Sunday School

They might not come up in Sunday school, but they’re in there.

You’ve probably heard of Adam and Eve, Noah and the ark, and of course Jesus. But the Bible is a big book, and there’s lot more in there than just those popular stories. There’s also magic fish, giants, and a prophet who was apparently really sensitive about being bald.

But then again, the Bible is the inspired Word of the almighty and ineffable God, so maybe we shouldn’t be so surprised that things seem a bit strange at times. read more

Why Do Catholics And Protestants Have Different 10 Commandments?

Why Do Catholics And Protestants Have Different 10 Commandments?

When listing the 10 Commandments, Catholics and Protestants have slight differences. While very similar, the difference is instantly noticeable. And even though both listings have solid biblical support, some Protestants use the difference as an opportunity to accuse the Catholic Church of changing the 10 Commandments to support their “idolatrous worshipping of statues”.

Here are the 10 Commandments as numbered by Catholics and Protestants: 

The Traditional Catholic Listing: 

1. I am the Lord your God: You shall not have strange Gods before me. 

2. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.  read more

50 Biblical Evidences for the Holy Trinity

50 Biblical Evidences for the Holy Trinity (Cuzco School, “The Enthroned Trinity” (c. 1730)) BY DAVE ARMSTRONG,  NOV. 14, 2016 In the Holy Bible, we find indications of the Most Blessed Trinity at every turn.

Briefly put, the Holy Trinity is the belief that the one God subsists in Three Persons: God the Father, God the Son, Jesus (Who took on flesh in the incarnation and became Man), and God the Holy Spirit. They are all God, with the same divine attributes, yet are in relationship with each other as Subject and Object.

It is ultimately a deep mystery, because we can’t fully comprehend how three can be one. It seems to go against logic. Yet the Bible plainly teaches it, with many and varied proofs, and so we must accept the revealed doctrine in faith, bowing to the fact that God’s thoughts are much higher than ours (Is 55:9). read more

Five “UnBiblical Traditions” of Protestants

Five “UnBiblical Traditions” of Protestants BY ARNOLD SCOTT, 10/27/2016 3:00:10 PM Five "UnBiblical Traditions" of Protestants Photo Credit: Flickr/alex.ch

Most Protestants, especially those who would identify as Bible Christians or go by Sola Scriptura, like to say that they follow the authority of God’s word in Scripture and anything else is unreliable and lacks any authority. In particular, they would criticize “unbiblical traditions” that are followed by others, including Catholics, and that do not have explicit support in Scripture, according to their view.

So it is somewhat ironic that these very same people follow several traditions not found explicitly in Scripture…and hold them as BINDING doctrine, not merely interpretations or optional customs. read more

What the Bible Says About Alcohol and Drunkenness?

What the Bible Says About Alcohol and Drunkenness?

Scripture gives strong testament to the fact that merely drinking alcohol is not a sin, but getting drunk on alcohol is.

10/13/2016 

Eduard von Grützner (1846–1925), via Wikimedia Commons

– Eduard von Grützner (1846–1925), via Wikimedia Commons

 Q: I need some help. Sometimes when I share my Catholic faith with people, they mention to me that Catholics like to drink alcohol and how wrong that is. How do I respond to this?

A: I would ask them to tell you where in the Scriptures it says anything about drinking alcohol being wrong. Quick answer: it doesn’t. It says getting drunk is wrong, but it doesn’t say merelydrinking is wrong. In fact, it tells us just the opposite: read more

Final Judgment is Not a Matter of “Faith Alone” At All

Final Judgment is Not a Matter of “Faith Alone” At All

In the biblical and Catholic view, works are not separated from faith and salvation.

10/07/2016 

Giotto, “The Last Judgment”, Cappella Scrovegni in Padua (1306)

A Presbyterian pastor once asked me: “If you were to die tonight and God were to ask you why He should let you into heaven, what would you tell Him?”

The problem here is that I don’t see anywhere in the Bible, in any passages we can find concerning judgment, where God talks like a good Protestant Evangelical. They never refer to the “faith alone” that we are told is the sole criterion of salvation. read more

WHY “THE GOSPELS WERE WRITTEN CENTURIES AFTER JESUS” IS COMPLETE NONSENSE?

WHY “THE GOSPELS WERE WRITTEN CENTURIES AFTER JESUS” IS COMPLETE NONSENSE?

Sep 19th, 2016 | By  

surprisedblog

Have you ever heard someone say “The Gospels were written centuries after Jesus”?

I hear this all the time. And of course the conclusion we are supposed to draw from this claim is that therefore the Gospels cannot be trusted to give us accurate information about the life of Jesus.

But there is one small problem.

This claim is complete NONSENSE. This claim evinces a total ignorance of history.

No New Testament scholar believes this ridiculous claim, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t get asserted time and time again on the popular level. read more

“Mutual Submission” between Husbands and Wives in Ephesians 5?

“Mutual Submission” between Husbands and Wives in Ephesians 5?

Ephesians 5

Since the promulgation of St. John Paul II’s Mulieris Dignitatem in 1988, Catholics often speak of a “mutual submission” between husbands and wives. Proponents of the idea of mutual submission between spouses, including John Paul himself and Pope Francis in Amoris Laetitia, often cite Ephesians chapter 5, and particularly verse 21—“submitting to one another out of the fear of Christ”—as the basis for their teaching. Located as it is between general exhortations on Christian living and specific instructions for relationships within families, this verse is read as teaching an attitude of service and mutual regard among Christians, an attitude which would be especially appropriate among spouses who possess an equal dignity and an equal share in the salvation won by Christ (cf. Gal. 3:28). While some claim that John Paul II intends to leave in place the traditional doctrine of male headship in marriage and others claim he has moved beyond this teaching, few have examined the exegetical foundation upon which this teaching is based. Does Ephesians 5 teach mutual submission among spouses? As plausible as this reading is on a superficial level, it is almost certainly wrong, for a number of reasons. read more