The Protestant Reformation brought forth the doctrine of Sola Scriptura or Bible
alone, the meaning of which is "by scripture alone". The doctrine that the Bible contains all knowledge necessary for salvation
and holiness. Consequently, sola scriptura demands that only those doctrines are to be admitted or confessed that are
found directly within or indirectly by using valid logical deduction or valid deductive reasoning from scripture. But nowhere
in the Bible do we see such a rule. This doctrine is purely manmade.
In the Bible in Matt 28:19,
Eleven apostles were send out into the world by the Lord with the mission to witness unto all nations and they were joined
by Mathias, the apostle replacing Judas, and this mission they did well or the Book of Revelation would not mention the 12
as the 12 foundations of the church.
21:14; And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and
in them the names of the twelve
apostles of the Lamb.
All 12 were the foundations.
But we can see that the Bible contains only the works of 5 of them; Mathew, John, Peter, James & Jude. So the works of 5 of the 12 we have in the Bible, then could it be that the rest of the 12 i.e. Thomas,
Bartholomew, Andrew, the other James, the other John, Philip, Simon the Canaanite and Mathias, the one who replaced Judas,
did these seven not preach? We see that all of them jointly as well as separately received the commandment to preach. And
what of the ones who wrote the gospels and the letters, did they just restrict themselves to just a couple of letters? Paul,
the apostle who entered the scene later wrote numerous letters. The others must also have written more than a couple of letters.
Then why are they not in the Bible? Also St Paul says ‘James, Cephas, and John,
seemed to be pillars, (Ga:2:9). But from them as well we see only a couple of letters. Is that all they preached? Also
it is hard to believe that Paul wrote this many epistles while the prominent 12 including the 3 pillars wrote only a couple
or none. Moreover, in the letter of Paul to the Colossians, he mentions of his letter to the Laodiceans, but we do not see
this letter in the Bible
4:16: And when this epistle is read among you, cause that
it be read also in the church of
the Laodiceans; and that ye
likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.
Revelation shows that like
Ephesus, Laodicea was also another church
Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last:
and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the
seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto
Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto
Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.
All the 12 and Paul did preach
and did write a lot, but many letters by the apostles have not come to the fore, and also, though they did all preach more,
not all of it was written down, as St. John often mentions in his letters
Having many things to write unto you, I would not
write with paper and ink: but I
trust to come unto you, and
speak face to face, that our joy may be full.
I had many things to write, but I will not with ink and
pen write unto thee:
From all this it is plainly
understood that the written scripture is not complete. More of the preaching was also done orally. Thus Sola Scriptura has
no base because not all of scripture or God’s word is contained in the books we have in the Bible. But we know that
the mission of teaching was entrusted not to the apostles as persons individually but to the church, and as Scripture says,
the Word continues with the church in the form of the Spirit who continues with the church, the church that is the pillar
and ground of truth. Nowhere in Scripture do we see that the books in the Bible contain all of God’s word, but the Scripture
says that His church is the Pillar and ground of truth, the church is the manifold of wisdom, it is the fullness of Christ
1) The church is ‘the pillar and ground of the truth’ (1Tm:3:15).
3:15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou
oughtest to behave thyself in the
house of God, which is the
church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
2) The mysteries hidden from
the beginning of the world has ‘now’ been revealed to the church ‘the manifold of wisdom’. (Eph:3:9,
10 & Mt 13:11).
Eph 3:9, 10 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of
the mystery,which from the beginning of the world hath
been hid in God, who created all
things by Jesus Christ:To
intent that now unto the principalities and powers in
heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold
wisdom of God,
M't:13:11: He answered and said unto them, Because it is given
unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven,
but to them it is not given.
3) The church is the
‘fulness of Christ Himself’. (Eph:1:22-23).
Eph 1:22-23 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave
him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his
the fulness of
him that filleth all in all.
5) Church ministers are the
stewards of the mysteries. (1Cor:4:1; Eph 3:4-5).
1Cor 4:1 Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of
Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.
Revelation is made to the church, similar to as in the Old Testament ‘the church receiving the oracles’. (Acts
7:38 & Eph 3:4,5)
Eph:3:4-5: Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my
knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was
made known unto the sons of men, as it is now
unto his holy apostles and prophets bythe Spirit;
Ac:7:38: This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness
with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sina, and with
fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us:
6) The mission to teach was
given to the church. (M't:28:19, 20).
Mt 28:19, 20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing
them in the name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the
Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I
commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even
unto the end of the world. Amen.
The lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and men should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger
of the LORD of hosts. (Malachi 2:6-8).
2:6-8 "True instruction was in his mouth, and no wrong
was found on his lips. He walked
with me in peace and
uprightness, and he turned many from iniquity. For the lips of
a priest should guard knowledge, and men should seek
instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the
LORD of hosts."
Church is the sole interpreter
If so, then as Malachi clearly
states, isn’t the church the interpreter rather than individuals. The mystery that had been hid has now been revealed
to the ‘church the manifold wisdom of God’. Which church? The visible or invisible? The visible of course, as
it is mentioned in the beginning of the verse ‘to make all men see’
so something visible. The visible preaching church. Then interpretation is to be sought from this manifold of wisdom rather
than each person doing his own interpretation as a result of which we see the breakups to Luther’s church, Campbell’s
church, Wesley’s church, and thousands of other ‘man made sects.
And St. Peter, the chief apostle
warns us in advance that;
Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any
private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time
by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were
moved by the Holy Ghost.(2Pet 19-21)
Interpretation of scripture
is to be done by the ‘holy men of God’ i.e. the church, moved by
the Holy Spirit and not for private interpretation. Because just as false prophets existed at the time of the prophets,
false teachers who ‘privily’ or through private interpretation
shall bring in damnable heresies. Interpretation is the mission of the church ‘moved
by the Holy Spirit’. (2Pet 1:19-21; 2:1-3; 3:16-17). It is to the church that revelation was made, as St Paul says
in Eph 3:9-10.
2; 3:16-17: We have also a more sure word of
prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a
that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the
star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no
prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but
holy men of
God spake as they were moved by the
Ghost. But there were false prophets
also among the people,
even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily
shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord
them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
many shall follow their pernicious ways; by
whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
to make all men see what is the fellowship of
from the beginning of the world hath been
hid in God, who created all
things by Jesus Christ: To the
that now unto the principalities and powers in
heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold
wisdom of God,
Interpretation of the Bible
into the various ways suited to men is strongly condemned in the Bible. The Bible says ‘such are accursed’ (Gal
Now, aren’t Christians
to live by the unwritten word as well? The Lord has said ‘by every word’
M't:4:4: But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not
live by bread alone, but by every
word that proceedeth out of
mouth of God.
What the other apostles taught
and has been lost was the teaching ‘of the church’ not of their own personal knowledge. This been transmitted
by the church in the form of church traditions and so rightfully said by Paul to hold on to the traditions that ‘they’
i.e. the church has taught by ‘word’ or ‘epistle’ i.e oral as well as written.
2Th:2:15: Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the
traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or
2Th:3:6: Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our
Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every
that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition
which he received of us.
This ‘tradition of the
church’ is different from ‘human tradition or tradition of men’ that was much criticized by Jesus. Church
tradition is the word of the Holy Spirit because the Lord said that the Spirit who is with the church forever will take it
from Him and give to the church.
He also said
I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye
cannot bear them now. Howbeit when
he, the Spirit of truth,
is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not
of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he
speak: and he will
shew you things to come. He shall glorify
for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
We see this happening in the
Acts (Ac:15:28: For it seemed good to the Holy
Ghost, and to us; Ac:20:7, 28, 29: Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and
to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers,
to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased
with his own blood) and the Book of Revelation. ‘what the Spirit saith to the churches’ (see Re:2:7, 2:11,
Re:2:17, Re:2:29, Re:3:6, Re:3:13, Re:3:22)
Church tradition is but the
fulfillment of the Lord speaking ‘forever’ through His the Spirit who is with the church forever, as He foretold
in Jn 16:12-14. That, the Holy Ghost, whom
the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things’ Joh:14:26, or ‘when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever
he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come’ (Joh:16:13)
And this is one reason that
“Scripture alone’ or ‘Bible alone’ theory of the Pentecostal and Protestant sects is a misconception
with no base, because the written Bible is incomplete. While, the church is ‘the manifold of wisdom’, ‘the
pillar and foundation of truth’, ‘the fullness of Christ’.
I put forward this question
to any and every believer be it of any sect. To whom do you turn to for as ‘the pillar and foundation of truth or the
manifold of wisdom to which the hidden truth has been revealed’ or for the correct interpretation of the Bible? To your
local pastor of course or another teaching authority of the sect. Where did they get their knowhow of the Bible? Not from
the true church of course, they are breakaways and in opposition to the ‘the pillar and foundation of truth or the manifold
of wisdom to which the hidden truth has been revealed’ and preaching a gospel different from that of the true church
and so the St paul call such as ‘accursed’ (Gal 1:8,9). Each sect has a different interpretation.
St Pauls warns believers to
keep away from the teaching of ‘any man’ or ‘an angel’ other than what ‘they’ i.e. the
Ga:1:8, 9: But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any
other gospel unto you than that which
we have preached
unto you, let him be accursed.
As we said before, so say I now
If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that
ye have received, let him be accursed.
And St Peter also points out
the possibility of misinterpretation of Paul’s epistles’ which are ‘hard to understand’ in 2Pet 3:15
to 17, that;
2Pe:3:15-17: And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is
salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to
wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in
all his epistles, speaking in them of these
things; in which are
some things hard to be understood, which
they that are
unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do
also the other
scriptures, unto their
own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved,
ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being
led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own
i.e. in ‘all’
of Paul’s epistles there are ‘things hard to understand’, ‘which the unstable wrest’ ‘as
they do also the other scriptures’ ‘unto their own destruction’. St Peter continues to say that he is warning
the believers before it happens ‘lest ye also be led away with the error’.
The Canon of Scriptures (i.e.
the set of Books in the Bible) that the Protestants base their belief of Sola Scriptura was ironically decided upon by the
council of the Catholic church i.e. by church tradition. They do not believe in church tradition, but have no alternative
but to believe in this tradition of the Catholic Church. Nowhere in the bible can we find any mention as to which of these
books are divinely inspired and which not. At the time the canon was decided by the council there were even other so-called
gospels and epistles in circulation. Like in the councils seen in the Acts of the apostles, as the apostles did not just use
their personal judgment on matters, but took council and decided on it, similarly the Council of the Catholic church met and
decided as to which books are inspired and which not, under the guidance of the Spirit. This again affirms the Christ’s
promise that the Holy Spirit guides the church and that the decisions of the councils are from God, that church traditions
are from God. If the scriptures themselves are part of church tradition, then how believe in Sola Scriptura? Also the chapter-wise
and verse-wise divisions in the Bible are as well done by men of the church and so church tradition and were not done by the
apostles or the ones who wrote the Books.
Sola Scriptura is a doctrine
new to the world that emerged only in the 16th century after the protestant reformation. Till then everyone had
no problem with following church tradition as well. Till then all including Luther, Zwingli, Hus, Calvin who were themselves devout Catholics, and all Christendom had no problem in following the Catholic
church as the pillar and bulwark of truth.