CATHOLICS CLAIM THE POPE GAVE THE BIBLE TO THE WORLD
Is it true that the Roman Catholic Church under the Pope gave the Bible to the world as claimed by some bloggers?
Note: The Roman Catholic declared the 7 Apocryphal books as “Deutero-Canonical” meaning “Second Canon” in the year 1546 during the Council of Trent. This was a Roman Catholic reaction to the European Church Reformation which started with Martin Luther in 1517 in Germany. Luther strongly denounced the sale of indulgences in Germany which had no basis in the Hebrew scriptures but prayer for the dead is found in the deuteron-canon. (E.Tanicala)
By Dr. Eusebio A. Tanicala
No, the Roman Catholic Church did not give the world the Bible. The following reasons will clarify this issue.
- Please read Romans 9:1-5. The Jewish people had the privilege of receiving the law, the covenants, the service of God, and the promises. Christ Jesus refers to the Law and the Prophets in Matthew 5:17. So the Jews knew what were the inspired books of scriptures.
- The recognized Hebrew Scriptures are the books from Genesis to Malachi. Josephus (born about 37 A.D.), who wrote the book “Antiquities of the Jews” says that the Jews had all the books from God by the time Artaxerxes I ruled the Persian Empire (464-423 B.C.). They dated Malachi about 430 B.C. So the OT canon closes with the Book of Malachi.
- It is said that there are about 295 OT quotations in the NT but there is nothing quoted from the Apocryphal books of the deuterocanon of the Roman Catholic Church. Christ never quoted from the Apocryphal books.
- There was the Synod of Jamnia (a town in Palestine) circa 96 A.D. This synod had doubts about the Book of James. The Greek-speaking churches on the eastern side of the Roman Empire had a collection of canonical books before a Roman bishop made any declaration of canonical books.
- Mileto, bishop of Sardis, a city in Asia Minor, a Greek-speaking area, mentioned books that correspond with the 39 books in the Old Testament. He did not list down the 7 apocryphal books as part of the canon of scriptures.
- Jerome, deputized by the Roman Bishop Damasus, made a new Latin translation of the Hebrew Scriptures and the Greek Scriptures, which were finished in 404 A.D. He listed the apocryphal books as “Books of the Church” for edification. He did not consider the apocryphal books canonical. Again, observe that it was only in the year 1546 in a Roman Church Council that they declared the 7 additional books canonical.