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# 01451 :  Sola Scriptura ("By Scripture Alone")
Dear Readers,

This thread is an outgrowth of another thread on the Forum, “Brethren Assemblies <> (Verpaddu sabha)” Since the subject matter is different from that thread, I started this thread. Though the discussion is between ‘trds’ and I, others are welcome to participate, if they feel to do so. Please make sure that the contributions are in tune with the intended subject of this thread and that is “The Scripture Alone” is the final authority for our faith and conduct.

Shalom Malekim!!!

Post by : George P. Koshy  View Profile    since : 6 Nov 2007


Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Nov 2007 1:27:20 PM Close
Dear ‘trds,’
Part-1

In the other thread, you wrote that Sola Scriptura is one of your primary doctrines. When we say that then the Scripture alone is our basis for all teachings, then we should be relying on the Scripture while explaining what we believe as taught in the Scripture. If we rely on others (this includes other websites, writings of others, etc.) then we have deviated from the principle Sola Scriptura (by scripture alone). I am not saying that we should not read the writings of others. What I am saying is that what we read as written by others should not be the final authority for our faith and conduct. After reading what others write, we should follow what the unbelieving Jews of Beroea did. Their actions are written in Acts 17:10-12. Those Jews referred to the Scripture after hearing Apostle Paul about the validity of what he spoke. The Holy Spirit told us that that was a good practice for us to follow.

The first item to be looked into is “what is doctrine,” according to the Scripture? When we say that the Scripture alone is our guide, then we should remember that all verses where the words of the original language that are translated as “doctrine” should be studied. This study should be done in the context of the verses, without disregarding any. Usually, we have a tendency to set aside certain verses as outliers or as not relevant for the study, because they may not agree with what we think as acceptable to us. If we do not consider all the verses, then we are not following our principle of ‘Sola Scriptura.’

The inspiration of the Scripture is applicable to the originals and not to the copies or translations. We should rely as much as possible on the original languages to have a better understanding of what is taught by the Holy Spirit through the Scripture. If we do, then we could come as close as we can, as it was originally given.

(To be cont. Part-2)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Nov 2007 1:28:54 PM Close
Dear ‘trds,’
Part-2

If we try to short cut our study by reading certain preferred writings, then we have deviated from the principle of ‘Sola Scriptura.’

The first occurrence of the word in the original language is important. The Holy Spirit did so in the beginning of His teaching through the Apostles. What do I mean by the first occurrence of a word in the original language? Greek is considered as the original language in which the New Testament was written. The order of the books as we are familiar with is not the order in which the Holy Spirit gave them through the Apostles. (For example: The following is considered to be the Chronology of the letters by Apostle Paul. 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Romans, Philippians, Colossians, Philemon, Ephesians, 2 Timothy, Titus, 2 Timothy, and Hebrews.) Other books in the New Testament are also inspired by the Holy Spirit. (I leave it up to you to complete and post on the Forum.)

If you wish, we could extend the study to the Old Testament. That should be done after we are through the New Testament.

We should not use rhetoric to establish our ideas, we should let the Scripture tell us what the Holy Spirit wants us to know as the “Scriptural Doctrine” or “Scriptural Teaching.”

Three different Greek words are translated as “doctrine” in the New Testament. They are: DIDACHE and it is derived from the Greek word DIDASKO, which means, “to teach.” DIDASKO in turn is derived from another Greek verb DAO, meaning, “to learn.” Therefore, DIDACHE is to mean, “Has been taught” and in this connection, it is translated as “doctrine” in the English Bible (e.g.: KJV). DIDACHE appears in the New Testament about 29 times and is translated as ‘doctrine.’ Another Greek word that is translated as “doctrine” in English is DIDASKALIA from DIDASKALOS, which means ‘an instructor.’ Therefore, the meaning of DIDASKSLIA is ‘instruction’ or ‘teachings,’ and therefore translated as ‘doctrine.’... (Cont.)

(To be cont. Part-3)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Nov 2007 1:30:33 PM Close
Dear ‘trds,’
Part-3

... DIDASKALIA appears 21 times in the New Testament and is translated in KJV as “doctrine" 19 times. It is also translated as ‘learning’ and ‘teaching’ one time each. The third Greek word is LOGOS from LEGO to mean ‘to lay forth.’ Therefore, LOGOS is generally translated as “word.” Its literal meaning is “something thought about or said.” In Hebrews 6:1 the Greek word LOGOS is translated as ‘doctrine.’ LOGOS appears in the New Testament about 318 times and only once, it is translated as “doctrine’ in KJV. It should have been translated as “word.” Therefore, we will take Hebrews 6:1 in connection with a study on “word’ and not on ‘doctrine.’

Because of the above reasons, we will be considering the two Greek words DIDACHE and DIDASKALIA in our study about “doctrine.”

The following are the references where DIDACHE appears in the original language:
Matthew 7:28; 16:12; 22:33
Mark 1:22, 27; 4:2; 11:18; 12:38
Luke 4:32
John 7:16, 17; 18:19
Acts 2:42; 5:28; 13:12; 17:19
Romans 6:17; 16:17
1 Corinthians 14:16, 26
2 Timothy 4:2
Hebrews 6:2; 13:9
2 John 9 (2), 10
Revelation 2:14, 15, 24

The following are the references where we read DIDASKALIA in the New Testament:
Matthew 15:9
Mark 7:7
Ephesians 4:14
Colossians 2:22
1 Timothy 1:10; 4:1, 6, 13, 16; 5:17; 6:1, 3
2 Timothy 3:10, 16; 4:3
Titus 1:9; 2:1, 7, 10
Romans 15:4 (translated as ‘learning)
Romans 12:7 (translated as ‘teaching’)

If we considering each of these verses and study them, then we will come to know about the ‘doctrines of man,’ ‘doctrines of the apostle,’ ‘doctrines of the Pharisees,’ ‘doctrine of Christ,’ ‘doctrine of Balaam,’ etc. We are asked not to be carried away with divers doctrines. We are also told about doctrines that are contrary to what we should learn from the Scripture.

(To be cont. Part-4)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Nov 2007 1:31:23 PM Close
Dear ‘trds,’
Part-4

Please conduct the study and let us discuss from the Scripture. We should never equate the doctrines of any Church to be at par with ‘Scriptural doctrines.’ Doctrines of a group of Christians always tend to accept a few and reject many of the Scriptural doctrines. When we talk about ‘Brethren Doctrine,’ the same pitfall is there. Let us talk about “Scriptural doctrine” using the principle, “Sola Scriptura.”

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 6 Nov 2007 8:16:52 PM Close
Dear brother George,

This is too extensive and an exhaustive study laid before me to have an interaction with you and/or others in order to fully understand the meaning of 'doctrine'. I wish I had enough time to meditate on all these verses and write the details to show how they are understood by several people in several ways. We may concur on few thoughts but certainly a stage will come up when we differ in thoughts. This happens not only with two or more individuals concentrating on theological subjects but surely with many more, perhaps, one in ten believers at least. I will try to input certain thoughts as I find time, but I can not concentrate fully and keep writing every day. Sorry about it, becaue I am already on a very big project, which I can not neglect. In the meanwhile it will be my great pleasure if others could participate in this discussion.

God bless.

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 7 Nov 2007 6:33:41 AM Close
Dear brother George,

I think we can have friendly discussion instead of aiming at wining or losing, which should not be the aim of a fair discussion. In every discussion points of contrast are presented and many a time the discussants do not agree upon the views presented, but final outcome will be 'for' and 'against' presentations. In the case of 'Sola Scriptura' God's word and God's thinking is final but what we see in the Scriptures is that many things are hidden from finite human by the infinite God, who alone knows the facts why he did that. My opinion is that he did that to have glory for Himself and that comes through discussions. If every view is presented by God himself, very clearly as clearly as mathematics work out, or Newton's Laws of motion are recorded, probably there would not be any discussion.

Now, coming to the point of 'Sola Scriptura', it is the assertion that the Bible is the written Word of God, and that written Word of God, self-authenticates itself, and clear for any rational reader. The Bible interprets itself, as its own interpreter and no other person need to interpret it. It is self content in itself, and final authority for Christian Doctrines. “Sola Scritura” is the foundation for any doctrinal principle of the reformation by protestants especially that which was held by Martin Luther. “Sola Scriptura” is held by Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox churches as the authenticated by the church that draws faith from their sacred tradition.

More some other time.

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 7 Nov 2007 6:08:18 PM Close
Dear brother George,

I will try to be as precise as possible with the realization that this is discussion forum, which means, I will be making certain general remarks, rather than going too deep in to them, lest they should become a book in itself. For example when I wrote as “as clearly as mathematics work out” I meant like 1+1=2 and not 3 and when I wrote something about Newton’s laws of motion, I meant about what they are generally accepted. In addition I would also like to write that In spite of being a very busy man at my work place and with my own personal project on hand, I am trying to contribute here, for the purpose of learning, and to spend some time in exploring Scriptures, which might also benefit readers.

Let me move on:

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.

2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

These verses are very often quoted by believers and it is unbelievable that there are several denominations. Every denomination claims they are rightly dividing the word of truth. I do honor the verse, Acts 17:11 “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so”. True, as we keep searching the Scriptures we come to know more and more of it, and every time we read we get consolation, peace of mind, and feel that we are getting closer and closer to God.

contd...2

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 7 Nov 2007 6:08:48 PM Close
...2

The first three panels of yours were like introductory ones, and the verses were in fourth one, from where I will cite them to write few thoughts of mine. You may interfere any time and correct me or ask clarification of what I am writing about.

Matthew 7:28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:

The doctrine of Jesus as referred to in the verse cited above were his teachings about whom, the listeners around him were astonished because he was teaching as one having authority.

Matthew 16:12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

In the above verse Jesus was referring to erroneous doctrines that pervade in to Christian life just as any leaven would spoil whole lump of bread. These erroneous doctrines penetrate in to Christians unnoticeably in the first sight and are hard to be detected in a short period of time, but would gradually and surely develop to become cancerous and will control the Christian life itself.

Matthew 22:23 The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him,

Resurrection is the literal raising of the body to life after the cessation of life in it but Sadducees refused to believe in this and they also denied the future state of the soul after death. They also refused believe in the existence of angels and spirits.


More some other time.

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Reply by : believer.bible   View Profile   Since : 7 Nov 2007 6:59:25 PM Close
Quoting the main writer:
---------------
The inspiration of the Scripture is applicable to the originals and not to the copies or translations.
---------------

This is not true if we search the scriptures. Timothy had scriptures and Paul reminded Timothy that the scriptures he had were inspired.

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness

Further, there are many instances in the Bible were copies are referred to as "scripture". So in the light of the scriptures, the author's statement is not accurate.

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 8 Nov 2007 3:37:19 AM Close
Dear brother George,

I will serially number my posts though the dates of posting may vary. Last one I ended with (2) so this is (3).
======================

And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes. (Mark 1:22)

This verse is same as of Matthew 7:28

And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him. (Mark 1:2)

As a part of his ministry Jesus did miracles by casting out devils/unclean spirits by his own power and word that was new to the audience. This made him famous all around the places that he traveled and the people formed impression that he was Messiah. They also wondered about his teaching.

And he taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in his doctrine, (Mark 4:2)

The teachings of Jesus contained parables fulfilling the prophecy that was in Psalms 78:2 “I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old”

contd...4

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 8 Nov 2007 3:44:11 AM Close
...4

Mark 11:18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine.

With Jesus teaching as powerfully as one with authority, Pharisees felt their power and influence was getting lessened. The power that Jesus had in his teaching been mighty, that no one on earth had before, and that constrained many to believe in him. No wonder, there were no mikes, or televisions, or radio ministries, yet his voiced reached to the last man in the multitudes. The word says all the people were astonished at his doctrine. It is really awesome that when he fed five thousand with fives loaves and two fishes his voice reached all the people. Believe me; my voice will not reach a man in tenth row, if there is no mike, in a hall if I am asked to speak.

Mark 12:38 And he said unto them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces,

There were in the days of Jesus Scribes, who were learned men that loved to go in long clothing and also loved greetings (Matthew 23:6-7 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi) Jesus warned to be careful of such people, who come out with their own teaching.

Now you may write where are we heading and why we were trying to know about these verses that you cited.

Thanks

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Nov 2007 8:49:55 AM Close
Dear ‘trds,’

After reading your replies, let me say that the purpose of me writing on this Forum is not to win. Its sole purpose is to tell that we should go back to the Word of God and accept it as the final authority for our faith and conduct. In that effort, I also say that man made teachings are to be verified with the Scriptures before accepting them as scriptural.

Let me also say that we have all the time until we are called by our Lord to be with Him forever. Therefore, we need not be spending all our time by ignoring other duties in replying. We could use a reasonable time between replies.

When I started this thread, I didn’t have any inclination to discuss a particular doctrine. If you prefer or find it is easy to discuss a particular doctrine, then we could do so. Please elect any one.

In my case, I do like to study using all verses that related to a subject. I do not leave any verse out, if possible. Why did I say “if possible?” I fear that by being human, I may miss some and it is not intentional.

I feel that explanations such as in your posting #4 may lead us away from what we are trying to discuss on this thread. We should make such explanations to the minimum. We should concentrate on, “What is doctrine,” on this thread, unless we select one doctrine as an example. If we do so, then we should concentrate on that doctrine alone.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 8 Nov 2007 8:57:05 AM Close
Dear George,

Did you mean I write the explanations of all the verses you cited? I have no time; sorry. I do not want to elect any doctrine nor do I want to learn anything more.

Thank you.

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