Sola Scriptura: The Bible alone is enough!
Apostolic Fathers used scripture as the primary defense against false doctrine.
Apostolic Fathers: Dates they lived and other information.
Apostolic Fathers: Five kinds of Tradition.
370 AD: Basil: Tradition Wars: Let Scripture Decide!
"What then? After all these efforts were they tired? Did they leave off? Not at all. They are charging me with innovation, and base their charge on my confession of three hypostases, and blame me for asserting one Goodness, one Power, one Godhead. In this they are not wide of the truth, for I do so assert. Their complaint is that their custom does not accept this, and that Scripture does not agree. What is my reply? I do not consider it fair that the custom which obtains among them should be regarded as a law and rule of orthodoxy. If custom is to be taken in proof of what is right, then it is certainly competent for me to put forward on my side the custom which obtains here. If they reject this, we are clearly not bound to follow them. Therefore let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favour of that side will be cast the vote of truth." (Basil, Letter 189, 3)
What a "flagship passage"! Every Roman Catholic and Orthodox priest should be required to hand scribe this text by Basil on parchment, rolled up and placed in a little clear bottle and hung around their neck! For the Roman Catholics who refuse to believe that such words could fall from the lips of a Catholic bishop, the Pope describes Basil as, "one of the most distinguished Doctors of the Church". One side of the debate cried, "my tradition is right". The other side replied, "No, our tradition is right". But Basis says something far more important, "custom is to be taken in proof of what is right", except in those cases when the opponent reject this custom. Basil continues, in this case, "let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favour of that side will be cast the vote of truth." We do not dispute that Basil clearly believes that "church tradition" is authoritative, (ie. something that has been practiced for a long time should take precedence over some new doctrine.) But Basil's next statement should send chills up the spine of Orthodox and Catholic leaders. Basis says that when unity cannot be attained by first appealing to "church tradition", then the highest court of appeal is to debate the matter directly from scripture! This is exactly what Protestants have been saying all along! Furthermore, Catholic and Orthodox bishops are forbidden to even debate Protestants! Sure some powerless but ambitious pew-dwelling Catholic might want to debate, but what's the point, when they don't even believe they can even understand the scriptures themselves! But Protestants know just how easy it is to defeat such "defenders of Orthodoxy" in scriptural debates. In the end, Basis gives good advice to all Catholics who just say, "the Pope is right, forget the scriptures".
"What our fathers said, the same say we, that the glory of the Father and of the Son is common; wherefore we offer the doxology to the Father with the Son. But we do not rest only on the fact that such is the tradition of the Fathers; for they too followed the sense of Scripture, and started from the evidence which, a few sentences back, I deduced from Scripture and laid before you. For "the brightness" is always thought of with "the glory," "the image" with the archetype, and the Son always and everywhere together with the Father; nor does even the close connexion of the names, much less the nature of the things, admit of separation" (Basil, On The Spirit, ch 7, 16)
Once again, we see Basil using scripture, not some distinct oral tradition for the foundation of his views.
by Steve Rudd
Go To Start: WWW.BIBLE.CA