The Deuterocanon is not inspired
Since Double_Helix46 failed to issue the challenge as promised , I have taken it upon myself to throw down the gauntlet.
Note: There are four rounds, and the voting period is two weeks. 8000 characters.
Round 1 - Acceptance (opening argument for Pro)
Round 2 - Arguments
Round 3 - Rebuttals
Round 4 - More Rebuttals, no new arguments
Resolved: The Deuterocanon is inspired
Burden of Proof is shared, with a tilt towards Pro.
"Deuterocanon" is defined as "the Old Testament scriptures included in the canon of the Catholic Church but rejected as apocryphal by Protestants; Tobit, Judith, Additions to Esther, Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Jesus ben Sira (Sirach), Baruch, Additions to Daniel, 1 and 2 Maccabees."
I would like my opponent to list his Old Testament canon in round 1, if possible.
Here is my list:
Song of Songs
I will be giving reasons as to why the Deuterocanon is worthy of its inclusion in that list. I will also (possibly) challenge my opponent to demonstrate how scriptures he deems inspired are, for if there is no standard by which to deem inspiration, this debate is impotent.
I would like to thank AlwaysMoreThanYou for this interesting debate. I hope this debate can be fruitful in understanding. My opponent has given me permission to go ahead and dig right in in the first round and start my argument. I will offer my reason why the Deuterocanon is not inspired scriptures and should not be included as canon.
My Canon Scripture:
My opponent requested my canon in this debate and I will oblige. My Canon is within the modern KJV. My KJV consist of 66 books.
http://www.sacred-texts.com.... I remind everyone right now that my canon is not the topic here but only the Deuterocanon is. My Bible consist of:
GENESIS, EXODUS, LEVITICUS, NUMBERS, DEUTERONOMY, JOSHUA, JUDGES, RUTH, 1 KINGS, 2 KINGS, 1 SAMUEL, 2 SAMUEL, 1 CHRONICLES, 2 CHRONICLES, EZRA, NEHEMIAH, ESTHER, JOB, PSALMS, PROVERBS, ECCLESIATES, SONG OF SOLOMON, ISAIAH, JEREMIAH, LAMENTATIONS, EZEKIEL, DANIEL, HOSEA, JOEL, AMOS, OBADIAH, JONAH, MICAH, NAHUM, HABAKKUK, ZAPHANIAH, HAGGAI, ZECHARIAH, MALACHI, MATTHEW, MARK, LUKE, JOHN, ACTS, ROMANS, 1 CORINTHIANS, 2 CORINTHIANS, GALATIANS, EPHESIANS, PHILIPPIANS, COLOSSIANS, 1 THESSALONIANS, 2 THESSALONIANS, 1 TIMOTHY, 2 TIMOTHY, TITUS, PHILEMON, HEBREWS, JAMES, 1 PETER, 2 PETER, 1 JOHN, 2 JOHN, 3 JOHN, JUDE, REVELATIONS
Protestants call the books of the Deuterocanon the Apocrypha. The reason they are referred as the Apocrypha is because that was the books original name. The RCC changed the collection of these books name to the Deuterocanon. It is the truth that the Apocrypha has always been apart of the Hebrew sacred texts. Though the Hebrew speaking Jews themselves never viewed those texts as canon scripture and infact they never referred to them as scripture at all.
The Deuterocanon is a collection of eleven books. "Deutero" means "second" and so the deuterocanonical books refer the second canon by Greek speaking authorities. These books are only considered to be inspired by the Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox, Ethiopian Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox churches. The Apocrypha was included in the Septuagint, a Greek translation of the Tanakh.
Before Christ, there was two separate writings accepted by the Jews. One of them, which we now call the Palestinian Canon, was written in Hebrew and used primarily by Jews living in Palestine and Judah. But there were also substantial numbers of Jews living in Egypt and in other places outside of Palestine, who no longer spoke Hebrew but Greek. Therefore, a Greek translation of the Jewish scriptures and writings was made which we now call the Septuagint. The Greek's took it upon themselves to include the Apocrypha inside their Bibles along with canon scriptures and this is were the RCC books came from. The Tanakh is the Hebrew Old Testament accepted by Jews and it does not include the Apocrypha. Both the Jews and Protestants consider the apocrypha books to be secular books and not inspired by God.
The Jews are the people God has ordained to decide what books were to be accepted into the canon. My opponent may say well the Jews did not accept Jesus and they can not be trusted. Well my opponent would be wrong. Many Jews accept Jesus Christ as the Messiah. In fact who were the apostles and in fact highly regarded RCC Pope Peter? They were all Jews. Even the Jews who did not accept Jesus as the Messiah would only be a threat to the New Testament not the Old. These Jews would in fact keep very good track of their scriptures and only accept truly inspired texts. They are still looking for the Messiah, so, it would be detrimental for them to keep their inspired text alive with them. This is why they do not have the Apocrypha in their canon. We have the scriptures also telling us that it is the Jews who were ordained to decide scriptures in Romans 3:2! In fact when has anyone other than the Jews been inspired to write scriptures?
The RCC themselves did not put the Apocrypha in their scriptures as canon until 382 A.D. and even then they did not put all of the books in it. It was not until 1546 A.D. in the Council of Trent did they make all the books of the Apocrypha in the canon. The RCC has no authority to make scriptures canon or not. The Bible tells us that the Jew has the decisions for the Oracles of God. In Proverbs 30:6, the prophets tell us that no one should add or subtract from the scriptures.
In fact the Apocrypha contains may things that contradicts the O.T. It contains many historical errors. It suggest that people can gain salvation through works when connected to the N.T. and not by grace. None of the apostles not Jesus himself refer to the Apocrypha books. There is one possible and maybe correctly passage in Hebrews that could connect to the Apocrypha. In any way the Apocrypha has many reasons why not to be inspired or canon.
Although the Apocrypha was occasionally quoted in the early church's, it was not in the canon. Even Jerome himself resisted including the Apocrypha but was pressured into accepting it. Almost all of the references given by those who do not object of the Apocryphal books as canon to the N.T. are very objectionable. There is only one verse that is not accounted for in the whole N.T.
The Apocryphal books themselves admit that the prophetic succession ended with Malachi and Zechariah.
(1 Maccabees 4:46; 1 Maccabees 9:27; 1 Maccabees 14:41). Josephus the Jewish historian rejected the Apocryphal books (Against Apion 1:8). The council of Jamnia also held this same view (F.F. Bruce, The books and Parchments[ Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H. Revell, 1963], p.98).
The scriptures themselves tell us that they are inspired from God. There are over 400 verses that say, 'God says'. There are over 551 verses that say, 'God said'. there are 293 verses that say, 'the Lord said' and 268 that says, 'the Lord says'. The books in the Deuterocanon do not refer to the Lord speaking or inspiring in this fashion. Most authoritative scholars cross-checked prophecies, dates, locations, people and scriptures themselves to determine inspiration from God in determining canon scripture.
The early church councils applied several basic standards in recognizing whether a book was inspired.
1. Was it authoritative?
2. Was it prophetic?
3. Was it authentic?
4. Was it dynamic?
5. Is it received (accepted and used by believers)?
(Norman L. Geisler & William Nix, A General Introduction To The Bible. pp. 137-144).
A. Old Testament Canon – Recognizing the correct Old Testament books
2. The Council of Jamnia (A.D. 90) officially recognized our 39 Old Testament books.
3. Josephus, the Jewish historian (A.D. 95), indicated that the 39 books were recognized as authoritative.
B. New Testament Canon – Recognizing the correct New Testament books
1. The apostles claimed authority for their writings (
Colossians 3:16; 1 Thessalonians 5:27; 2 Thessalonians 3:14).
2. The apostle’s writings were equated with Old Testament scriptures (
2 Peter 3:1, 2, 15, 16).
3. The Council of Athenasius (A.D. 367) and the Council of Carthage (A.D. 397) recognized the 27 books in our New Testament today as inspired.
I hope I have gave a foundation for this debate. I truly hope this leads into a fascinating discussion of the truth about the scriptures. I turn it back over to Con.
I thank my opponent for accepting this debate. I wrote up a massive rebuttal, but then decided that I should probably make an opening argument instead, so that's why there's no rebuttal. Don't worry; one will show up eventually.
Contention One: Rejection of the Deuterocanon was by a Jewish council that also rejected the New Testament
I have heard many Protestants claim that the Jews were somehow invested with a great power to decide the canon. In general, I agree with this in theory, but when they go on to claim that the Jews rejecting the Deuterocanon (never mind that it was after Jesus started His Church) is complete justification for them to similarly reject it, I facepalm.
When did the Jews reject the Deuterocanon as inspired? Well, for starters, this wasn't a universal rejection. To this day, Ethiopian Jews include the Deuterocanon among the list of their inspired scriptures. Reading my opponent's argument, it seems he's claiming that the Deuterocanon was rejected at the council of Jamnia, and since I'm no historian and the time period seems about right, I'll assume that's true.
The council of Jamnia was in the first century, and until then the canon was undecided. While my opponent would have you believe that there was some universal consensus among the Jews before the canon was officially decided on, that is untrue. There were two major groups; the Pharisees and the Sadducees, with the Sadducees only accepting the authority of the Torah and none of the other books. Unfortunately for them, they managed to become extinct before the council of Jamnia, which is probably why the view of the Pharisees prevailed.
What's the point of all this rambling? It is more or less on the authority of the Jewish council that my opponent relies for declaring his Old Testament canon canonical, yet that council (presumably) was wrong in rejecting the New Testament. It seems to me that either the council was right or it wasn't, yet my opponent accepts some of the decisions made by that council with regards to the scriptures, but rejects others. Importantly, it's not as if the council merely affirmed a universally accepted truth; besides the reasons I already mentioned, Sirach is quoted in the Talmud where it is treated as inspired scripture, but was rejected by this council:
"And there gathered themselves to Jephthah idle men and they went out with him; mentioned a third time in the Hagiographa, as written: Every fowl dwells near its kind and man near his equal" - Talmud (quoting Sirach 13:15)
Additionally, this was in the first century, after Christianity had already begun. I ask my opponent; If a Jewish council was called today and decided that their canon should actually only include the Torah, would he accept that decision as binding on Christians? This seems to me a logical extension of the view that the Jews have full and absolute jurisdiction over the Old Testament canon forever.
In conclusion for this argument, I think that the council from which my opponent derives his canon was undeniably biased against Christianity in purpose, and for this reason was unlikely to make the most accurate judgements (Sirach?). I really hope my opponent answers my aggressive question in the last paragraph, because it will shine much light on my position for him.
Contention Two: The early Church accepted the Deuterocanon
This is fairly self-explanatory. It's a common (and completely wrong) claim that the Deuterocanon was canonized at Trent. Trent merely reaffirmed the canon. You can't reaffirm something that was never affirmed in the first place, so it stands to reason that Trent was merely approving an already extant canon. Read the following quotes from early Councils:
"Now indeed we must treat of the divine scriptures, what the universal Catholic Church accepts and what she ought to shun. The order of the Old Testament begins here: Genesis, one book; Exodus, one book; Leviticus, one book; Numbers, one book; Deuteronomy, one book; Joshua, one book; Judges, one book; Ruth, one book; Kings, four books; Paralipomenon, two books; Psalms, one book; Solomon, three books: Proverbs, one book, Ecclesiastes, one book, Canticle of Canticles, one book; likewise Wisdom, one book; Ecclesiasticus, one book . . . . Likewise the order of the historical: Job, one book; Tobit, one book; Esdras, two books; Esther, one book; Judith, one book; Maccabees, two books" - Pope St. Damasus (Synod of Rome)
"That besides the canonical scriptures nothing be read in church under the name of divine Scripture. But the canonical scriptures are as follows: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua the Son of Nun, Judges, Ruth, the Kings, four books, the Chronicles, two books, Job, the Psalter, the five books of Solomon, the twelve books of the prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel, Tobit, Judith, Esther, Ezra, two books, Maccabees, two books" - Synod of Hippo
The Synod of Carthage also affirmed this same canon, but I wasn't able to find a quote from it. I can also quote numerous instances of pre-Trent Councils using the Deuterocanon as scripture:
"Those who adopt this heresy not only heap insults on representational art, but also reject all forms of reverence and make a mockery of those who live pious and holy lives, thus fulfilling in their own regard that saying of scripture, for the sinner piety is an abomination." - Nicea II (quoting Sirach 1:25)
"As divine scripture clearly proclaims 'Do not find fault before you investigate, and understand first and then find fault,'" - Constantinople IV (quoting Sirach 11:7)
"This holy synod admonishes all holders of benefices, or those in holy orders, since they are bound to the canonical hours, if they wish their prayers to be acceptable to God, to recite the day and night offices, not in a mumble or between their teeth, nor swallowing or abbreviating their words, nor intermingling conversation and laughter, but, whether they are alone or with others, reverently and distinctly and in such a place as will not diminish devotion, for which they ought to dispose and prepare themselves, as the scripture says: Before prayer prepare your soul, and do not be like someone who tempts God." - Vienne (quoting Sirach 18:23)
So it is completely wrong and a grave error to claim that the Council of Trent created the canon which clearly had existed since at least the fourth century.
Contention Three: There is reason to believe some of the Deuterocanonical books are inspired
In Tobit 12:15, we read:
"I am Raphael, one of the seven angels who enter and serve before the Glory of the Lord."
Okay. That could be completely fabricated, couldn't it be? But Revelation 1:4 reads:
"John, to the seven churches in Asia: grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne,"
Could Tobit have known of the seven angels if Raphael was a phony? Probably not. Anticipating that my opponent will claim that "spirits" and "angels" are completely different, I contend that the word here translated as "spirit" could mean "angel" as well, and taken in context is in fact more likely to mean angel than anything else.
The non-Catholic version of the Book of Esther never mentions God. Not once. I feel that's suspicious.
Sirach, as I already mentioned, was quoted in the Talmud.
Hebrews 11:35 says:
"Women received back their dead through resurrection. Some were tortured and would not accept deliverance, in order to obtain a better resurrection."
This is a clear allusion to 2 Maccabees 7:
"(9) At the point of death he said: 'You accursed fiend, you are depriving us of this present life, but the King of the world will raise us up to live again forever. It is for his laws that we are dying.'"
In 2 Maccabees 7, a bunch of people died horribly and torturously for refusing to break the commandment of God. This is a clear reference.
The main reason for rejecting the Deuterocanon is a Jewish council, and the main reasons for accepting it are Christian ones.
My opponent starts his argument by opposing the Jewish determination of rejecting the Apocrypha/Deuterocanon. He also generally agrees with the theory that the Jews were invested with the power to decide canon scriptures, (1 Thessalonians 2:1-6; Hebrews 5:8-14; Acts 7:33-39). In fact the Christian Jews are to teach and pass the Word of God to the Gentiles and not the opposite, (1 Timothy 2:7; 2 Timothy 1:11; Romans 15:18; Acts 15:7; Acts 13:42). Though my opponent somehow wants us to believe that all Jews are not Christian or do not accept the New Testament and that is totally untrue. In fact there are many Christian Jews in the world today and then. Are we to believe that those same Jews are not to be trusted to deliver proper canon scriptures as well? My opponent merely facepalms such a idea. Are we to believe all Jews are anti-Christian during and after Jesus Christ? This is impossible to show because we know that all the apostles were Jewish and Christian. Are we to believe that they were the only Jewish Christians in Jesus's day and just after? http://en.wikipedia.org...
There is evidence to suggest that the process of canonization occurred between 200 B.C. and 200 A.D. A popular theory is that the Torah was canonized between 400-200 B.C., the Prophets 200 B.C., and the Writings 100 A.D. None of these involved the named Deuterocanon. Though it could be agreed that there is no scholarly consensus as to when the Jewish canon was set. http://en.wikipedia.org...
My opponent then retorts to a meaningless question as to suggest that maybe if the Jews would reject all books but the Torah, should we accept it. Well, there are many Jewish Christians and they would have be included in this question and I doubt they would reject the O.T. or the N.T. This questions has no goal or foundation other than to claim all Jews are non-Christian.
My opponent continues to claim that all Jews are not Christian by suggesting that the Jewish council was biased against Christianity. This maybe true in this instance only because this council formed the O.T. canon and not the N.T. I ask my opponent to show the error of this council in the development of the O.T. canon, which I mite add was before the RCC canon?
In the period extending roughly from AD 50 to 150 a number of documents began to circulate among the Christian churches, including epistles, gospels, memoirs, apocalypses, homilies, and collections of teachings. Several of these writings sought to extend, interpret, and apply apostolic teaching to meet the needs of Christians in a given locality. These churches consisted of Jewish, Palenstinian, Roman and various other peoples of the time. The canon of the New Testament were written mostly in the first century and finished by the year 150 AD. We can conclude that the Roman's took control of the canonization of the N.T. after this point. Though this doesn't mean that Rome was the only Christian church or had the authority. My opponent should show why the RCC had premier decision on the canon? http://en.wikipedia.org...
I have shown that the Christian Jews stuck to their own O.T. and also the N.T. writings which did not include the Deuterocanon. My opponent would like to just call the RCC the early church but there were many in that time that did not have the same scriptures as the RCC. The RCC held to the Septuagint, which was Greek and included the Deuterocanon but the Jewish Christians did not use the Deuterocanon. The reason I stick with the Jewish O.T. is because they are given the oracles of God.
My opponent thinks I suggested that the council of Trent made the Apocrypha, this was not what I said, they changed the name to the Deuterocanon. I did make a mistake though, They dropped books from the canon and did not add them. Those dropped were Manasses and 1 and 2 Esdras. In 1546 is the year that the name Deuterocanon was formed. I must apologize for my mistake, I still ask, Why were these books removed, when they were used for 1200 years? Either way the canon was changed in 1546 A.D. http://www.yrm.org... http://en.wikipedia.org...
My opponent suggested that there is reason to believe some of the Deuterocanonical books are inspired. I ask him to show us reasons why? He gives us a claim that Esther does not mention God by name but it does refer about God. He misses that the Song of Solomon does not mention the word God also, will He find that strange? The workings in Esther no doubt are signs of God. The entire book shows that God's hand is behind the scenes saving the Jewish nation. The book of Esther reminds us that we do not need to see God to know that He is not far from us.(Acts 17:27)
We move on to the Tobit 12:15 claim that connects with Revelations 1:4, this is a error by my opponent and any who suggest it. First we see that in Tobit it is a 'Angel', has a name, Raphael. We read that his Revelation example mentions seven spirits. I add two more passages that relate in Revelations, 4:5 "And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God." Here refers to lamps of fire and not angels. In Rev. 5:6, reads, "And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth." Here it mentions a lamb with seven eyes and horns which are the spirits of God. My opponent should explain how this relates to angels and not the actual Spirits of God, like the Holy Spirit?
My opponent then turns to Hebrews 11:35, this is the only passage that helps him, if it does. Both books of Maccabees are paralell and probably have the same author. I remind readers in the first round that the author of 1 Maccabees mentioned three times that His books are not inspired by God nor was he a prophet. This does not mean that Jewish learnings or customs that are refered in the book are not good in God's sight and taught by other teachers in the Jewish nation. If the books are not inspired then it is a history book and custom book of Jewish life. This would be the reason for a passage in the N.T. relating to 2 Maccabees. Let's remind readers this is one passage in a bulk of scripture.
The reasons for rejecting the Deuterocanon is because the Jews do not accept them, both Christian and non-Christian. These books contradict teachings in the Old and New Testament. Not one of them is in the Hebrew language. These books have one reference to the teachings in the N.T., Heb 11:35. These books were not offically added until 382 A.D. These books were not completely reconized until 1546 A.D. This is more than enough reason to reject them as inspired.
Back to my opponent!
I apologize for an apparent ambiguity in my earlier argument. When I said "Jew", I was referring to people who adhered to Judaism, not the ethnic group.
I would also like to thank my opponent for not extending all his first round arguments, because that saves me the trouble of rebutting two rounds worth of arguments in one round and was very thoughtful.
Pro writes "He also generally agrees with the theory that the Jews were invested with the power to decide canon scriptures"
All the scripture my opponent posts is irrelevant, except Acts, and Acts speaks not of the canon but of Moses being inspired.
Pro writes "In fact the Christian Jews are to teach and pass the Word of God to the Gentiles and not the opposite"
Again, I apologize. By "Jew", I meant "follower of Judaism".
I'm really quite sorry for this, it never occurred to me that I was being ambiguous. This is fully my fault.
Pro writes "There is evidence to suggest that the process of canonization occurred between 200 B.C. and 200 A.D."
How universal was this canonization? Not too universal, I would suppose, given that one of the two biggest groups in Jesus' time rejected everything but the Torah, and that even today Ethiopian Jews accept the Deuterocanon. As far as I can tell, this canon only applies to Rabbinic Judaism. Is my opponent a Rabbinic Jew? If not, why does he believe this canon to be binding?
Pro writes "This questions has no goal or foundation other than to claim all Jews are non-Christian."
Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
However, I do ask this question of you; If 99% of the Jews (not referring to the religious group this time) were atheists, do you think they would still be entrusted with the scriptures by virtue of being Jewish in ethnicity?
Pro writes "My opponent continues to claim that all Jews are not Christian by suggesting that the Jewish council was biased against Christianity."
The Jewish council in question certainly included no Christians.
Pro writes "This maybe true in this instance only because this council formed the O.T. canon and not the N.T. I ask my opponent to show the error of this council in the development of the O.T. canon, which I mite add was before the RCC canon?"
It didn't form the NT because it rejected it. It was a council of non-Christian Jews, of that there can be no doubt, as the Jewish Jews didn't consider the Christian Jews to be Jewish.
You can tell simply by the wholesale rejection of the NT and of Jesus by the council that it was not inclusive of Christian Jews.
Also, you have not responded to my argument about the Book of Sirach.
Pro writes "The canon of the New Testament were written mostly in the first century and finished by the year 150 AD."
I'm not sure if this is supposed to be intentionally misleading, but it certainly is (misleading). From Wikipedia source:
"The books of the canon of the New Testament were written mostly in the first century and finished by the year 150 AD." - Wikipedia
My opponent has given no reason to think that the NT canon was decided before 150 A.D.
Pro writes "My opponent should show why the RCC had premier decision on the canon?"
Where did you get your canon from? Your NT canon seems identical in all aspects to the Catholic Church's canon, so I don't see on what grounds you're disputing this. Also, I doubt that either the Synod of Hippo or the Synod of Carthage was in Rome.
Pro writes "I have shown that the Christian Jews stuck to their own O.T. and also the N.T. writings which did not include the Deuterocanon."
Really? I don't recall where you showed that, beyond possibly an assertion or two.
Pro writes "My opponent would like to just call the RCC the early church but there were many in that time that did not have the same scriptures as the RCC."
I would indeed, because it was. Any evidence that there were "many" who did not have the same scriptures?
Synod of Carthage, Synod of Hippo, Synod of Rome.
Pro writes "The RCC held to the Septuagint, which was Greek and included the Deuterocanon but the Jewish Christians did not use the Deuterocanon"
False . Who do you think made the Septuagint? Jews, of course. They didn't make it just to stare at and declare it uninspired, they made it to use it, which they did. Fragments of the Deuterocanon in Hebrew have been discovered.
If they obviously and clearly knew the Deuterocanon to be uninspired, it wouldn't make too much sense for them to translate it and include it alongside canonical scriptures without some kind of disclaimer, would it?
Pro writes "They dropped books from the canon and did not add them."
False. Those books were never in the canon.
Look at my quotes from the Synod of Hippo and the Synod of Rome. They're the same canon, so I'll just re-quote Hippo:
"But the canonical scriptures are as follows: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua the Son of Nun, Judges, Ruth, the Kings, four books, the Chronicles, two books, Job, the Psalter, the five books of Solomon, the twelve books of the prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel, Tobit, Judith, Esther, Ezra, two books, Maccabees, two books" - Synod of Hippo
No Manasses, clearly. What two books of Ezra?
Esdras is the most confusing of all the Old Testament books when it comes to canon. There is 1 Esdras, 2 Esdras, 3 Esdras, and 4 Esdras.
1 Esdras and 2 Esdras became known as Ezra and Nehemiah, while 3 Esdras and 4 Esdras became known as 1 and 2 Esdras .
Clearly, the "Ezra, two books" referred to Ezra and Nehemiah, 1 (3) and 2 (4) Esdras were never canonical.
Pro writes "My opponent should explain how this relates to angels and not the actual Spirits of God, like the Holy Spirit?"
Look here . There are not seven Holy Spirits, so it's not definition one. The Spirits of God are unlikely to be humans, so there goes definition two. Therefore, definition three, spirits higher than man but lower than God, i.e. angels.
Pro writes "Here refers to lamps of fire and not angels."
So you think God's seven spirits were just lamps? Or just horns? Or just eyes? How could they be simultaneously lamps and horns and eyes?
Angels aren't physical beings. They could likely appear in multiple forms.
Pro writes "I remind readers in the first round that the author of 1 Maccabees mentioned three times that His books are not inspired by God"
No, he didn't say that his books are not inspired, he just said there was no prophet at the time. There's a huge difference.
St. Paul wasn't a prophet, but he could write inspired scripture. St. James wasn't a prophet, but he could write inspired scripture. St. Peter wasn't a prophet, but he could write inspired scripture.
Pro writes "This does not mean that Jewish learnings or customs that are refered in the book are not good in God's sight"
So then, what's your definition of inspired?
Pro writes "The reasons for rejecting the Deuterocanon is because the Jews do not accept them, both Christian and non-Christian."
Really. Evidence, please.
Pro writes "These books contradict teachings in the Old and New Testament."
Pro writes "Not one of them is in the Hebrew language."
Lies. Sirach, Tobit, and Baruch were found to have been written in Hebrew . Fragments of the rest have been found.
Pro writes "These books have one reference to the teachings in the N.T., Heb 11:35."
One direct and obvious reference. There are many, many not so direct and obvious ones. Regardless, you don't reject Obadiah because you don't find references to it in the NT, do you?
Matthew 6:19-20 and Sirach 29:11
Matthew 7:16 and Sirach 27:6
Matthew 27:43 and Wisdom 2:18
John 1:1-3 and Wisdom 9:1
Pro writes "These books were not completely reconized until 1546 A.D."
Wrong. I dedicated an entire contention to this in my opening argument.
Pro writes "This is more than enough reason to reject them as inspired."
I rest my case.
My opponent seemed to think the passages I supplied were not hinting to the Jewish disciples or prophets as being given the task of the correct canon and teachings.
In 1 Thess. 2:4 it says, "But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel."
In Heb. 5:12, "Ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God."
Acts 7:38, "This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel which spoke to him .....and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give to us."
Romans 3:1-2, "What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way: chiefly, because that to them were committed the oracles of God."
Who was to teach the scriptures? In John 7:35 it say's, "Then said the Jews among themselves....will he go to the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?"
We should not overlook that the Jews are God's chosen people and to them are given the inspiration of God. God did not name the Jews first as His people and then the Gentile for no reason at all. I have offered the examples of required inspration in other rounds and here. The RCC is in fact a Gentile church and are not given the oracles of God, only the Jews.
The Eastern Orthodox is a whole different matter because they have yet another opinion about the canon. The Council of Jamnia, which seems to have taken place around 90 AD established the canon authoritatively for nearly all Jews. There were Jews living in Ethiopia who use a different canon than anyone else. This would lead into a whole round of discussion. As cited above and previous rounds the Jewish canon was pretty universal for all Jews. My opponent concludes that Jews could become atheist and should they be trusted then? Well, this is simply not the case and we are not debating hypotheticals. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Certainly the Council of Jamnia had no Christians on it but why would that be of importance for the O.T.? Would not the non-Christian Jews want a correct O.T.? This does not change the fact that the N.T. gospels and writings came from Christian Jews. The problem is not the foundation of the RCC but the development of it afterwards. There were underground churches that existed before legalization of the RCC as the mother church, some are recorded to have existed in Europe, Greece, Pergamon, Anatolia, Derinkuyu and many other monastries. http://en.wikipedia.org...
The Talmud is not part of canon scripture by the Jews and I have no problem with it quoting the book of Sirach. http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com...
I never claimed that the N.T. was formed before 150 A.D. I claim that the O.T. canon was by the Jews in 90 A.D. and before the RCC canon. I got my O.T. from Jewish sources and my N.T. from universally agreed Christian canons. Roman Christians were not the only ones involved in the N.T. canon. We not debating the N.T. here, in that case, we agree on the N.T. canon. The only Jewish sect that maintains the books in the Deuterocanon are the Ethiopian Jews and we have discussed them briefly, they have the widest canon in the world. The reason I did not include Ethopian Jews because they were affiliated more closely with non-Jewish origin and mostly affiliated with other East Africans. http://en.wikipedia.org...
The story of the Septuagint is that Ptolemy II sponsored the translation by non-Hebrew speaking Jews. They translated all the Jewish writings available before the canon. Starting approximately in the 2nd century CE, several factors led most Jews to abandon use of the Septuagint. The earliest gentile Christians of necessity used the it, as it was at the time the only Greek version of the Bible, and most, if not all, of these could not read Hebrew. http://en.wikipedia.org...
The Bible mentions that the seven spirits are before God's throne, that Jesus Christ "holds" the seven spirits of God, they are seven burning lamps, the seven spirits have the "seven eyes" of the Lamb and states that they are "sent out into all the earth." The seven spirits of God are symbolic of the Holy Spirit. The Bible uses the number 7 to refer to perfection and completion. The perfect and complete Holy Spirit.
Resource: The Holy Spirit by Charles Ryrie.
Maccabees makes reference that there was no prophets of God to write inspired materials. Remember here that the author includes himself in this period. The author concedes that it is an abridgement of another man"s works and expresses concern as to whether a good job was done or not (see 2 Maccabees 2:23; 15:38).
Till there should come a prophet. (1 Maccabees 4:46)
There was no prophet seen in Israel. (1 Maccabees 9:27)
There should arise a faithful prophet. (1 Maccabees 14:41)
My opponent suggested that Saint Peter or Simon Peter was not a prophet. He was an early Christian leader and one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. James, son of Zebedee was one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus. Peter himself agreed with the writings of Paul. The resurrected Jesus appeared to him, he was struck blind, and after his sight was restored Paul began to preach that Jesus was the Messiah. These three were hand picked by Jesus.
Matthew 6:19-20(Proverbs 23:1-11)
Matthew 7:16(Psalms 92:12-14)
Matthew 27:43(Psalms 22:4-8)
John 1:1-3(Psalms 119:159-160)
There are examples of women receiving back their dead by resurrection in the Protestant O.T. Elijah raising the son of the widow of Zarepheth in 1 Kings 17, and you can find his successor Elisha raising the son of the Shunammite woman in 2 Kings 4. So the first part of Hebrews 11:35, is unquestionably referring to Scripture.
Let's move on to the obvious contradictions and/or UnBiblical doctrines.
1. Judith 1:5
"Now in the twelfth year of his reign, Nabuchodonosor king of the Assyrians, who reigned in Ninive the great city, fought against Arphaxad and overcame him"
Nebuchudnezzar was king of Babylon.
2. Tobit contains certain historical and geographical errors such as the assumption that Sennacherib was the son of Shalmaneser (1:15) instead of Sargon II, and that Nineveh was captured by Nebuchadnezzar and Ahasuerus (14:5) instead of by Nabopolassar and Cyaxares.
3. Doctrine of the Mass (2 Maccabees 12:42-45; compare with Hebrews 7:27).
4. The notion that the world was created out of preexistent matter (Wisdom of Solomon; compare with Genesis 1 and Psalm 33:9).
5. Giving alms and other works can make an atonement for sin (Ecclesiasticus [Sirach] 3:3; 3:30; 5:5; 20:28; 35:1-4; 45:16; 45:23; compare with Romans 3:20).
6. The invocation and intercession of the saints (2 Maccabees 15:14; Baruch 3:4; compare with Matthew 6:9).
7. Worship of angels (Tobit 12:12; compare with Colossians 2:18).
8. Purgatory and the redemption of souls after death (2 Maccabees 12:42,45; compare with Hebrews 9:27).
The reason I dropped the adding or removing of books is because my opponent and the RCC could be right. I can admit that. What I have shown is the unability of the RCC to have authority in making canon scripture because they are not Jewish. I have shown that the Jews themselves (except the supposed Ethiopians) have rejected the Deuterocanon. I have given numerous contradictions and Biblical errors within the Deuterocanon. I also made a mistake writing that some of the books of the Deuterocanon were not written in Hebrew. I have made numerous errors in this debate and I apologize but these errors do not reflect the resolution of the proof why it should not be added in the canon.
Resolution is affirmed!
Pro writes "My opponent seemed to think the passages I supplied were not hinting to the Jewish disciples or prophets as being given the task of the correct canon and teachings."
They were "hinting to the Jewish disciples… as being given the task" of teaching. They weren't only hinting at the Jews alone being able to teach, and they mentioned no canons at all.
1 Thessalonians 2:4 doesn't mention Jews, it mentions the apostles. My opponent should have given a reason for thinking that the people spoke of were entrusted with the Gospel because they were Jews, rather than because they were apostles.
Hebrews 5:12 doesn't say you need a Jew to teach you.
Acts 7:38 says "he… who received the lively oracles". Who was this he? Moses.
Romans 3:1-2 says "were committed". Were the oracles still committed at the council of Jamnia? If so, then the rejection of the New Testament ought to stand. If not, then the rejection of the Deuterocanon ought to fail.
John 7:35 in my opponent's Bible is a grave mistranslation. The word in question does not mean Gentiles, but rather Greeks , including Hellenistic Jews.
Pro writes "We should not overlook that the Jews are God's chosen people and to them are given the inspiration of God."
Even though (most of) the Jews rejected Christ, they're still God's chosen people? They still are entrusted with the inspiration of God when they rejected the NT?
Pro writes "The Council of Jamnia, which seems to have taken place around 90 AD established the canon authoritatively for nearly all Jews."
So why do you hold to the council of Jamnia? The Ethiopian Jews are Jewish too, are they not entrusted with the oracles of God? The Sadducees were Jewish too, they rejected everything but the Torah. Are they not entrusted with the oracles of God? Mind you, the Sadducees lived after the "Law" and the "Prophets" had supposedly been canonized, yet they rejected them both. They were Jews, weren't they entrusted with the oracles?
Pro writes "My opponent concludes that Jews could become atheist and should they be trusted then?"
My point (which you clearly didn't get) was that the Jews weren't entrusted with the oracles just because they were Jewish in ethnicity. When they rejected Christ, they lost their authority.
Pro writes "Would not the non-Christian Jews want a correct O.T.?"
Pro also writes "The Talmud is not part of canon scripture by the Jews"
The Talmud is easily one of the most important writings in Rabbinic Judaism, the Rabbinic Judaism that canonized the "Writings". My point was that if they used to deem Sirach scripture, then possibly the council only rejected it out of hostility to the Christians.
If that was the case, then obviously they would not be as concerned with having a correct OT as they were with spiting the Christians.
I can't help but wonder what point my opponent is trying to make by mentioning underground churches. Does he have any evidence that these churches fully agreed with the Jews regarding the OT? If not, then why bring them up?
Pro writes "The only Jewish sect that maintains the books in the Deuterocanon are the Ethiopian Jews and we have discussed them briefly, they have the widest canon in the world."
So? They're still Jews. Why weren't they entrusted with the oracles? Because their canon doesn't agree with yours?
Pro writes "The earliest gentile Christians of necessity used the it, as it was at the time the only Greek version of the Bible, and most, if not all, of these could not read Hebrew."
Oh, how deluded you are. The Jewish Christians (and Jesus) used it too . Even this rabidly anti-Deuterocanonical source admits that Jesus quoted from the Septuagint .
"And I saw that the seven angels who stood before God were given seven trumpets"
No prophets. Not no inspiration. The author was probably just being modest when he expressed concern about the quality. 1 Corinthians 7:40 reads:
"She is more blessed, though, in my opinion, if she remains as she is, and I think that I too have the Spirit of God."
He thinks? He only thinks? He doesn't know? Paul's just being modest and humble. If you have the Spirit of God inspiring you to write inspired scripture, I think you'd know.
Pro writes "There are examples of women receiving back their dead by resurrection in the Protestant O.T."
Yeah, but that's only part of it, isn't it?
"Some were tortured and would not accept deliverance, in order to obtain a better resurrection."
Go on. Find that.
The entire verse is unquestionably referring to scripture. The Deuterocanon.
Pro writes "Judith 1:5"
Judith is presumably an allegory, in fact probably because of this bit that you point out. Every Jew at the time would know that that was clearly not historically accurate, and thus would realize it wasn't ordinary historical writing.
Pro writes "2 Maccabees 12:42-45"
I see no problem (and you haven't pointed out one).
Pro writes "Wisdom of Solomon"
I can't really respond lacking a verse.
Pro writes "Sirach"
You ought not to compair Sirach to the New Testament. If you compared Leviticus (for example) with the New Testament, I'm sure you'd find some issues as well.
Pro writes "2 Maccabees 15:14"
Pro also writes "Baruch 3:4"
So it's safe to assume the only way you ever pray is with that one prayer? I suppose you'll have to throw out most of the OT for teaching alternate forms of prayer. You'll probably have to chuck the NT too.
Anyhow, Matthew 6:9 in no way implies that Jeremiah can't pray for his people. For all you know, Jeremiah is just repeating that one prayer over and over again.
Pro writes "Tobit 12:12"
Turn. You misunderstand this completely. No one was praying to an angel. Raphael was delivering Tobit's prayer to God. See Revelation 5:8. This should be an argument for me.
My opponent says, "They weren't only hinting at the Jews alone being able to teach and that the N.T. was only talking about the apostles as being teachers." This is true but let's remind him who the apostles were, they were Jews. Hebrews 5:12 was infact describing the Jews as those given the oracles of God. Moses was a Hebrew and progenitor of the Jewish people. I am not suggesting that all Jew's are to determine the scriptures. I have no trouble relying on those Jews in determining the O.T. Now when it comes to the N.T. it is only logical to rely on Christian Jews, which in fact, are many in the world then and today. My opponent fails to see that the Jews who reject the N.T. still in fact rely on the O.T. for their beliefs and that is sacred to them. It was Jewish people who saw and recorded Jesus Christ and wrote the very gospels we read today. The Jews in question are the ones who rejected Jesus Christ as the Messiah. Just because they rejected the N.T., should that mean they can not determine the O.T.? NO!
My opponent says that my translation in John 7:35 is a grave error. He gives no reason why this is true. He gives no other translation. He simply says that it should read Greek instead of Gentile and no reason why. Were there only Greeks then? No, there were many peoples who were Gentiles and all were available for teaching and salvation.
Con asks, "Even though (most of) the Jews rejected Christ, they're still God's chosen people?"
Romans 1:16 "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek."
Romans 2:9-10 "Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile. But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile."
We see that indeed the Jews are God's chosen people even though some rejected Jesus Christ but must we forget that not all did reject the Christ. The Jews in fact have been entrusted with the inspiration of God for His oracles.
I do hold to the Jewish decision of Jamnia. The Ethiopian Jews did not have any decision in that council and maybe they should have. My opponent tries to bring the point that because many Jews were wrong by rejecting Jesus Christ that their O.T. determinations are also wrong. Why when it is most important to their religion and belief? I find it absurd to think they would reject scriptures of the O.T. that is important to the very core of their belief. By that logic then we should disregard any decision by anyone who has ever lived. Has everyone that lived told a lie and made wrong decisions? Yes, they have but should we reject all their decisions because of it? No, we shouldn't. I agree though that those Jews that rejected Christ have no authority over any of the N.T. but only the O.T.
My opponent gives us the story that the non-Christian Jews rejected the Talmud as canon out of hostility for Christians but still view it as canon. What? No, it is not canon is because they do not feel it is inspired scripture and it not being canon shows that. I have no doubt they view it as important as Jewish heritage literature.
The reason I brought forward the other churches that were Christian was because they opposed the RCC and maintained their own scriptures or very well could have had the same scriptures. The point was they did not agree with the RCC and had to remain underground because of the long reach of the RCC, which no doubt caused the Protestant reformation also.
The Ethiopian Jews have not been fully determined as primarily Jewish. Their canon involves all the writing's of all the Jewish culture. It seems by this point my opponent is suggesting that we should take all Jewish writing's as inspired and canon.
My opponent seems to say I am deluded but his own response shows delusion. He says that Jesus used a Greek written Bible, that is what the Septuagint is, Jesus spoke and read Aramaic. So, how did Jesus use it if it was written in Greek? On top of the fact that many sources says that the Septuagint was written after Jesus. http://www.scionofzion.com...
Con says, "I quoted a stupid passage." I doubt that. He then gives us another passage that states seven angels that STOOD before God. This does not help him nor does he give any explanation for his reasoning. I am sure many angels have stood before God.
My opponent says that the author of Maccabees is just being modest when he says that there is no prophet in Israel. I call it honesty myself. In 1 Corinthians the KJV is a little different.
He asks, "He thinks? He only thinks? He doesn't know?" I agree here that Paul was being modest but this statement and the three in Maccabees are not close to the same. Maccabees clearly says that there is not a prophet in Israel. Was he a apostle? Speaking on the apostles, they all were hand picked by Jesus Christ and given the task of writing scripture about Christ and to other Christians churches but my opponent seems to think that was not good enough. A prophet writes things they have not physically happened yet but was inspired to see. The apostles saw what they wrote about.
My opponent clearly has one passage within the whole N.T. to fall back on. It is true that Maccabees relates to Hebrews in that one instance and none of my O.T. canon relates to the later portion of that verse. My opponent has not given us any reason other than one half of a verse to determine if the Deuterocanon is inspired. This is what this whole debate is about but we get one half of a verse as the sole reason why the entire Deuterocanon is scripture.
My opponent admitted that Judith was not historically accurate. For the voters that is enough to displace Judith. In Tobit he admits that the author was creating fictional characters. In fact he says that he is not seeking actual history when reading the Deuterocanon. I hope he doesn't take that approach with the N.T. This bit from a random website no less.
My opponent seen no problem with with 2 Maccabees 12:42-45 in Catholicism teaching that the bread and the wine are actually changed into Christ"s body and blood? If the bread and wine are literally turned into flesh and blood, Jesus would have been advocating a violation of the Law that God had given Israel through Moses. That Law prohibited the consuming of any sort of blood (Lev. 17:10-12).
My opponent gave us three intentions. The first one is accepted and has not been shown as a reason to accept the Deuterocanon. Contention number two is also fallible because the early church did not make canon until 382 A.D. and there was many canon's available then. We seen that the Jewish council had a O.T. canon developed before then. The Ethiopian Jews were not part of that council. We have no reason to believe that the Christian Jews of that time accepted the Deutercanon. My opponent's third contention was highly fallible by saying that some of the books could be inspired. I have not rejected that particular verses mite be inspired, like Heb. 11:35. The point is if any of the writings in the Deutercanon are not inspired(in fact majority)then it is not inspired scripture. It is to hard to tell which is and which is not therefore it need not be canon. This is the Jewish point of view. If one book or portions of books are not inspired in the Deuterocanon then we would have non-inspired scripture in it. My canon is no doubt all inspired scripture. My opponent had only to show why the scripture was inspired and he failed to do that. He basically could have rejected my whole argument by showing that methods of determining the Deuterocanon but he failed to show any of it.
RESOLUTION IS AFFIRMED!
I thank my opponent for this debate as he, I enjoyed it very much and hope we can do it again.
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