Wednesday, June 9, 2010

2 Thess 2:15 Hold Fast to True Teachings

Prov. 22:28
Remove not the ancient landmark which your fathers have set

2 Thess 2:15
So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter.

1 Cor 1:4-6, 10
I give thanks to God always for you because of the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus, that in every way you were enriched in him with all speech and all knowledge -- even as the testimony to Christ was confirmed among you –

I appeal to you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree and that there be no dissensions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment.

The scripture quotes above sort of jumped out at me when I had in the back of my mind of a theme for the early Church, your and my ancestors in faith.
Reading the quotes below it should surprise no Christian today that we can find evidence that the truth of the Scriptures were enforced by the early Church, when there was dissension.

Irenaeus (ca. A.D. 140-ca. A.D. 202) writes:
’[B]eing most properly assured that the Scriptures are indeed perfect, since they were spoken by the Word of God and His Spirit.’ (Against Heresies 2,28:2).

Athanasius (ca. A.D. 295-A.D. ca. 373), the great Patriarch of Alexandria, writes:’
[T]he tokens of truth are more exact as drawn from Scripture, than from other sources.’ (Nicene Definition 32).

Tertullian of Carthage (ca. A.D. 155/160-ca. A.D. 240/250) writes:
’If it is nowhere written, then let it fear the woe which impends on all who add or to take away from the written word.’ (Against Hermogenes 22).

Ambrose (ca. A.D. 340 -ca. A.D. 397), the bishop of Milan, writes:
’For how can we adopt those things which we do not find in the holy Scriptures?’ (Duties of the Clergy I,23:102).

Augustine, the bishop of Hippo (ca. A.D. 354-ca. A.D. 430), writes:
’[W]hat more can I teach you, than what we read in the Apostle? For holy Scripture setteth a rule to our teaching, that we dare not ‘be wise more than behoveth to be wise;’ ... Be it not therefore for me to teach you any other thing, save to you the words of the Teacher.’ (Widowhood 2).

Origen of Alexandria (ca. A.D. 185-ca. A.D. 253/254) writes:
’In proof of all words which we advance in matters of doctrine, we ought to set forth the sense of Scripture as confirming the meaning which we are proposing....Therefore we should not take our own ideas for the confirmation of doctrine, unless someone shows that they are holy because they are contained in the divine Scriptures as in the temples of God’ (Comm on Matthew 25).

Source: all quotes above were taken from an article called
The Rule of Faith in Patristic Thought - by J. A. Gallegos

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