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Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs
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Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Fri Aug 26, 2005 10:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs

Has anyone else here read this or studied it? I have been recently. It's the (purported) farewell speeches from each of the sons of Jacob, on certain virtues and vices.

Now, atheistic scholarship says, variously, that it is a Christian work based upon Jewish sources, or a Jewish work with keystone Christian interpolations. I would certainly say both are possible. But I have seen no scholars yet who consider it as a serious element of possible Inspired work. This state of affairs rather reminds me of the dismissal of the "Catholic Epistles" as pseudoepigraphical and thus necessarily proof of inherent fault in Christianity, thus allowing its dismissal.

It has value independantly as a literary piece. As ccel notes, it adds lustre to Jacob's magnificent dying ode (my favourite part of Genesis, and far superior to Moses's blessing in literary terms). It is a magnificent piece of teaching, too.

But all other value for it must stem from whether it is by the twelve sons or not. If it does not, it is an intriguing reflection of what Jews saw as their qualities, and of how early Christians wished to present Jewish "Fathers of the Church" so as to help conversion.

But if it is inspired - not entirely implausible, not at all, as textual evidence does not, in any way, necessarily dictate Christian redaction of the piece - then we have an invaluable piece of proof of Christianity, in addition to an astounding, beautiful piece of literature (as it would Origen considered it).

Author:  matteo d'basio [ Sat Aug 27, 2005 1:47 am ]
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The Council of Trent declared that the canon of Sacred Scripture is closed. So this work is not "inspired" if by that you mean that it is on a par with the books of the Bible.

Author:  pax [ Sat Aug 27, 2005 5:12 am ]
Post subject: 

matteo d'basio wrote:
The Council of Trent declared that the canon of Sacred Scripture is closed. So this work is not "inspired" if by that you mean that it is on a par with the books of the Bible.


Definitely not on a par, but a great read, nonetheless. Of course, it has been dissected by the modern(ist) Scripture scholars, and anything in it that even smells like prophecy is labeled an interpolation from the late 1st century.

Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Sat Aug 27, 2005 2:14 pm ]
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The thing is, Pax, having read their analyses in detail, they all seem to be based on the idea of instant dismissal of prophecy. This is what leads to various other textual conclusions that run counter to what we have declared as a Church.

Author:  pax [ Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:09 pm ]
Post subject: 

MoreistCarmelite wrote:
The thing is, Pax, having read their analyses in detail, they all seem to be based on the idea of instant dismissal of prophecy. This is what leads to various other textual conclusions that run counter to what we have declared as a Church.


I know. It is the reason Daniel is dated at 165 B.C., and Matthew can be no earlier than the destruction of Jerusalem in 70. A.D. You simply cannot have prophecy actually coming to pass. Why.....that would mean the book was maybe actually written by God! A totally unnacceptable conclusion to a Modernist.

Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Sat Aug 27, 2005 9:10 pm ]
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My grandpa, despite being a fairly staunch atheist/aggy, dismisses such opinions on the same grounds he dismisses religion. Occam's Razor. Do not make any unproven assumptions. One can (he argues) neither prove the assumption that God exists, or God does not exist.

Oh, and Matteo, the NT Canon is determined by Apostolic authority, not inspiration; whilst the OT Canon is determined by proven tradition, not inspiration. Thus, all works in the Canon are inspired; but not all inspired works are necessarily in the Canon.

Author:  matteo d'basio [ Sun Aug 28, 2005 3:05 am ]
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The canon of the Scriptures was decided by Trent. We have the assurance of this declaration, and of Church Tradition, that all of the books of the Bible are inspired, and are inerrant in teaching the truths of the faith that the Lord wished to be taught in them. We do not have any such assurance about any other book, regardless of its age or provenance.

Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Wed Aug 31, 2005 2:56 pm ]
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Oh, that is true. It merely does not completely rule out a quality of inspiration in another work; indeed, tradition holds many writers and people to be inspired. If we were to say all Inspired works are in the canon, that would make things like the Assumption and the Immaculacy (infallible via Papal Bulls) fallibe.

Author:  Bonaventure [ Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:36 pm ]
Post subject: 

MoreistCarmelite wrote:
Oh, that is true. It merely does not completely rule out a quality of inspiration in another work; indeed, tradition holds many writers and people to be inspired. If we were to say all Inspired works are in the canon, that would make things like the Assumption and the Immaculacy (infallible via Papal Bulls) fallibe.


But the Church has never claimed that Popes or any other writer is inspired, just that they are protected from error. It is totally different from scriptural inspiration.

Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:37 pm ]
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Ineffabilis Deus, the Assumption is "revealed by God"...

Author:  MoreistCarmelite [ Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:38 pm ]
Post subject: 

Additionally, the Church does not necessarily deny the inspiration (or, if you will, in some cases protection from error, as would be the case in the Testament of the Patriarchs) of other works.

Author:  Bonaventure [ Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:43 pm ]
Post subject: 

MoreistCarmelite wrote:
Ineffabilis Deus, the Assumption is "revealed by God"...


Of course the assumption is revealed by God, but the encyclical that defined it was not inspired by God like scripture was. Only protected from error.

Author:  St Anthony of the Desert [ Tue Sep 06, 2005 7:00 am ]
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Infallible is different to inspired. Just like infallible is not impeccable, I guess.

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