Choose a topic from Vol 2:


Proof of God's existence
God's nature
Supreme control over all things and the problem of suffering and evil


Destiny of man
Immortality of man's soul
Pre-existence denied
The human free will
Determinism absurd


Necessity of religion
Salvation of the soul
Voice of science
Religious racketeers
Divine revelation
Revealed mysteries
Existence of miracles

The Religion of the Bible

Gospels historical
Missing Books of the Bible
The Bible inspired
Biblical account of creation
New Testament problems
Supposed contradictions in Sacred Scripture

The Christian Faith

Source of Christian teaching
Jewish rejection of Christ
Christianity a new religion
Rational foundation for belief
Causes of unbelief

A Definite Christian Faith

Divisions amongst Christians
Schisms unjustified
Facing the problem
The wrong approach
Is one religion as good as another?
Obligation of inquiry
Charity and tolerance

The Protestant Reformation

Meaning of "Protestant"
Causes of the Reformation
Catholic reaction
Reformers mistaken
The idealization of Protestantism
The Catholic estimate

The Truth of Catholicism

Meaning of the word "Church"
Origin of the Church
The Catholic claim
The Roman hierarchy
The Pope
The Petrine text
St. Peter's supremacy
St. Peter in Rome
Temporal power
Unity of the Church
Holiness of the Church
Catholicity of the Church
Apostolicity of the Church
Indefectibility of the Church
Obligation to be a Catholic

The Church and the Bible

Catholic attitude towards the Bible
Is Bible reading forbidden to Catholics?
Protestant Bibles
The Catholic Douay Version
Principle of private interpretation
Need of Tradition
The teaching authority of the Catholic Church

The Dogmas of the Church

Revolt against dogma
Value of a Creed
The divine gift of Faith
Faith and reason
The "Dark Ages"
The claims of science
The Holy Trinity
Creation and evolution
Grace and salvation
The Sacraments
Holy Eucharist
The Sacrifice of the Mass
Holy Communion
The Catholic Priesthood
Marriage and divorce
Extreme Unction
The resurrection of the body
The end of the world

The Church and Her Moral Teachings

The Inquisition
Other superstitions
Attendance at Mass
Sex education
Attitude to "Free Love"

The Church in Her Worship

Magnificent edifices
Lavish ritual
Women in Church
Catholics and "Mother's Day"
Liturgical Days
Burial rites
Candles and votive lamps
The rosary
Lourdes water
The Scapular

The Church and Social Welfare

Social influence of the Church
The education question
The Church and world distress
Catholic attitude towards Capitalism
The remedy for social ills
Communism condemned
The Fascist State
Morality of war
May individuals become soldiers?
The Church and peace
Capital punishment
Catholic Action

Comparative Study of Non-Catholic Denominations

Defections from the Catholic Church
Coptic Church
Greek Orthodox Church
Anglican Episcopal Church
The "Free" or "Nonconformist" Churches
Church of Christ
Seventh Day Adventists
Plymouth Brethren
Catholic Apostolic Church or Irvingites
Salvation Army
Christian Science
British Israelism
Liberal Catholics
Witnesses of Jehovah
Buchmanism or the "Oxford Group Movement"
From Protestantism to Catholicism

To and From Rome

Conversion of Cardinal Newman
Why Gladstone refrained
The peculiar case of Lord Halifax
Gibbon the historian
Secession of Father Chiniquy
Father Tyrrell, the modernist
Bishop Garrett's departure
Judgment on lapsed Catholics
Protestant apathy towards conversion of Catholics
Principles for converts to Catholicism
God's will that all should become Catholics

The Bible inspired

105. Why should we believe what is written in the Bible at all?

Because it contains the inspired Word of God who can neither fall into error nor fail in veracity. That leads on, of course, to the question as to how we know the Bible to be the inspired Word of God. The Catholic has no difficulty here, because he accepts the infallible teaching of the Catholic Church that it is indeed inspired. Further discussion from that point of view would lead to a study of the credentials of the Catholic Church as a divinely guaranteed teacher of religious truth. One who does not acknowledge the Catholic Church must fall back on the fact and fulfillment of Biblical prophecies, the extraordinary unity of theme running through so many books by different writers, the supernatural character of the doctrines set forth, and the moral power exercised by the Bible over so many millions of souls who have really studied it and entered into its spirit.

106. We have only the word of Moses for it that he received the ten commandments from God.

That is not true. We have the Word of Christ who personally approved and quoted the teachings of Moses as indeed a prophet of God. Prior to the advent of Christ the Jews had, not only the signs given by God as a guarantee of the mission of Moses, and the actual acceptance of the Law by a people who were reluctant to submit to it, but they also had the continuous history of their people described by many writers--a history recording the divine intervention again and again on their behalf, and ever insisting on the observance of the Mosaic Law. In addition to all this, of course, a Catholic has the authentic and infallible teaching of the Catholic Church as to the divine inspiration of Sacred Scripture. And therefore a Catholic could never say that we have only the word of Moses for it. We Catholics have much more than that.

107. I read recently the statement of a Protestant Bishop that the proof of inspiration rests solely on the power of moral and spiritual appeal in the Bible.

Such a subjective standard alone cannot be accepted. It affords no hope whatever of defending the Bible against modernism and unbelief. One who accepts such a standard would have to reject as uninspired all passages which had no moral or spiritual appeal for him. And an absurd position would arise if others discovered a moral and spiritual appeal in the passages he rejected. Are they to be inspired for them? In that case the passages would be uninspired and inspired simultaneously! They would be the Word of God and not the Word of God at one and the same time.

108. This Bishop said that Christians are not obliged to believe in the verbal inspiration and literal infallibility of the Bible.

The Catholic Church, of course, cannot accept a Protestant Bishop as an authority as to what Christians are bound to believe. How the Catholic Church would view this particular utterance depends upon what he meant by "verbal inspiration" and "literal infallibility." If, by verbal inspiration, the Bishop intended a dictation of the very words to the writers by God, as one dictates to a stenographer, Catholics are not obliged to believe in verbal inspiration. But we are obliged to believe that every single word as it left the hands of the original writers was written under the inspiration of God, and infallibly expressed the truth intended by God. God's influence respected the psychological characteristics of the various human instruments lie used; and this accounts for differences in method and style. But it is certain that the original authors wrote exactly the things willed by God, so that God is truly the principal Author of the Bible as it left the hands of the original writers, those writers being but the human instruments used by God. Not a word, nor a sentence, belonging to the original writings, could be excluded from the divine influence of God's inspiration.Secondly, we must ask what the Bishop meant by "literal infallibility." If he meant that not all the Bible is infallible, and that we may distinguish between religious parts and non-religious parts, then no Catholic could agree with him. We Catholics are obliged to believe as infallibly true every single sentence as it left the hands of the original writers. The whole of the Bible is for us the Word of God. We cannot regard the Bible as a mixture of God's Word and merely human thoughts or opinions. The Catholic Church has condemned the doctrine that personal interpolations by the original writers crept into their accounts, interpolations which did not fall under the inspiring influence of God.

109. The Bishop said that critics too often assume that Christians are committed to verbal inspiration and literal infallibility.

Catholics are committed to the explanations I have given. And we are prepared to defend the Bible on that understanding, even if others are not. For us, the Bible is wholly and entirely the Word of God, in all its parts. Others may collapse when they see a critic, but the Catholic Church will stand her ground and fight for the truth of the Bible as God's Word throughout. And when the critic is dead and forgotten, the Catholic Church will still be there, and the Bible will still be intact.

110. He said that it would greatly clarify religious discussions if only the critics would bear these things in mind.

Certainly a discussion between critics and Protestants would be clarified, if the Protestants marked off all those sections of the Bible which they are prepared to jettison. The critics could then confine their attention to the remainder. But when the critics thought themselves to have settled the Protestant position, they would find themselves still confronted by the Catholic Church with the battle to be fought over every inch of the ground.

111. Then you cling to the fundamentalist idea that the Bible is infallibly true?

I must warn you against any idea, if you entertain such an idea, that the term "fundamentalist" is sufficient to discredit the orthodox position. There are fundamental principles in every branch of knowledge--in art, literature, mathematics, and in all other forms of science. Yet no one sneers at those who cling to such fundamental principles as a basis of thought in their respective fields of knowledge. In the field of religion, also, there are fundamental principles; and they are not destroyed by cheap ridicule. If they can be really disproved, well and good. But no one yet has succeeded in disproving the infallible truth of the Bible. Of course, I do not mean that every interpretation individual readers choose to impose upon the Bible is infallibly true. The Bible is true in the sense in which God intended what is said in its pages; not in any alien sense in which mistaken people understand it.

112. We cannot be expected to regard the Bible as an infallible encyclopedia of general knowledge.

No one could expect you to do so. The Bible is infallible in what it intends to teach, not in what it does not intend to teach.

113. The whole conception of the author of Genesis concerning the physical universe was that current in his time. It cannot be regarded as final or unrevisable in the light of later science.

That is true; but it has no bearing on the question of the infallibility of the Bible. The Bible is not, and does not profess to be a scientific manual. Progress in science, and our further knowledge of the nature and the structure of the universe, may mean the revision of our own views of the universe from time to time. But it does not mean a revision of Biblical teaching. If some people thought that the Bible intended to teach such matters, that was their mistake. It is absurd to suggest that the Bible is mistaken, and therefore not infallible, because it does not teach a scientific view which it never intended to teach, and with which it does not profess to deal.

114. I do not mind the Bible omitting to tell the scientific truth. But I do object to positively wrong statements.

To that, I can but ask you to point out a single positively wrong statement. One thing, however, I will ask you to note. There is a difference between a true statement of the universe as it appears to the eye, and a true statement of it as explained by science. Even today it is a perfectly true statement to say in the popular fashion that the sun rose at 6 a. m. But the scientific statement explaining that phenomenon will fall back on the rotation of the earth. The scientist himself will say, "There's a half-moon tonight," and refuse to admit that he is gravely in error because some meticulous lunatic argues that the whole moon is still there, and that nobody has cut it in two. The Biblical writers correctly gave that aspect of the universe which was apparent to their senses, and no later scientific explanations can prove them to have written falsehoods.

115. If the Bible is the Word of God, it should be perfect.

If the Bible were miraculously produced by God without the use of human instruments, that is so. But since God made use of human instruments, it will be but relatively perfect. The human writers were living psychological instruments whose personal characteristics God respected, and whose traits are reflected in their writings. The ordinary writing of the same person will vary according to his use of a fine pen or of a broad pen. An imperfect instrument means secondary imperfections. The Bible is relatively perfect insofar as it gives us the revelation of God in accordance with the limitations of human ideas and language, and in as good a way as the various individual human instruments were able to arrange their ideas and express them.

116. Is that how you account for the errors and contradictions in the Bible?

I deny that there are any errors and contradictions in the Bible. If you meet with what is apparently an error or a contradiction, then your translation may be at fault, or you have not correctly grasped the sense intended by the writer, or the writer is correctly quoting the errors of others as being errors. But in none of these cases is it the Bible which is at fault.

117. If the Bible is the work of God, it should be free from errors from cover to cover.

It is. But it is a fallacy to speak of the Bible as the work of God, abstracting from the human authorship also. The Bible is the joint work of both God and the human instrumental authors He inspired. The work is wholly from God as principal Author; and wholly from the individual writers as instrumental causes. Thus every word in this book comes from myself as principal cause, and from my pen as instrumental cause. Each cause, in its own order, is a complete cause.

118. If it is the work of man, errors would be easy to understand.

It is again a fallacy to speak of the Bible as the work of man as if God had nothing to do with it. It is the joint work of both God and man.

119. Could it be proved to be untrue by showing it to be self-contradictory?

Yes, for contradictories cannot be simultaneously true. But there are no real contradictions in the Bible.



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