he Catholic Apologetics section of is dedicated to providing our visitors with conventional Catholic Apologetics, including biblical, theological, and historical issues surrounding the Catholic Faith. Each topic-page is divided into sub-categories: articles, dialogues, debates, and Q&A. Visitors who are interested in suggesting an article or asking a question are encouraged to e-mail us their request.
Question: I had been going through an article on the "spurious" nature of the canon, written by William Webster, and in the process of researching what he says found your refutation (much better than anything I was coming up with). However, I have a question about one of his quotes: "Now, according to his judgment, in the epistle to the bishops Chromatius and Heliodorus, these books (and any other like books in the canon of the Bible) are not canonical, that is, not in the nature of a rule for confirming matters of faith. Yet, they may be called canonical, that is, in the nature of a rule for the edification of the faithful, as being received and authorised in the canon of the Bible for that purpose." Is Cardinal Cajetan's classification of canonical versus non-canonical technically correct? Meaning, might the deutero books be considered "non-canonical" because they cannot be used to prove the faith, even if they are canonical because they included in the canon? Or is his statement simply wrong on all counts?
Question: I'm arguing for an authoritative interpreter so that accurate understanding is guaranteed, not just probable. My opponent has asked if my choice of an authoritative interpreter is an fallible choice? What's the answer to this? I mean, obviously it's a fallible choice, but…it's a confident choice in a way that Sola Scriptura can't provide – but what "way" is that? I know he's going to say, "Then you aren't guaranteed of anything, because all your 'guaranteed' answers are based on that first 'probable', fallible choice." I've always tripped on this one…how would you answer it?
Question: Eric Svendsen writes this about the canon:
The New Testament canon that we currently have was first recognized (not determined) by the Eastern church (not Rome), represented by Athanasius in his Easter Letter (mid fourth century). Rome had adopted a New Testament canon that excluded Hebrews, but eventually adopted the New Testament canon decided upon by the Eastern church by naming the same books at the synods of Carthage and Hippo (late fourth century, early fifth century).
What do you have to say about that?
Question: This is a question on the use of Matthew and Josephus to support only the Palestinian canon of the OT. If someone uses Matthew 23:35 – "from Abel to Zecheriah" – to support the idea that Jesus only recognized the Palestinian canon, what does this passage really mean in relationship to the OT canon. In other words, Maccabees came after Zecheriah, so it wasn't recognized by Jesus? Something sounds very fishy about this and I need your analysis of it. He also quotes Josephus Contra Apion (1.38) to the same end. Thanks for your great help!
Question: Can you tell me why the Douay Rheims includes the Johannine Comma? I thought it was based on St. Jerome's Latin Vulgate. Do we even have St. Jerome's original work? Did that insertion come AFTER St. Jerome's original, of which we no longer have?
Question: How do you, as an apologist, handle objections by non-Christians who use parts of the OT dealing with God condoning massive slaughter, incest, the destruction of entire cities, or any of the other various moral objections we would have to some of the occurrences in the OT?