Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In our very Protestant influenced society we are often asked about Tradition and confronted with questions about why we do various things. The following answer, from another Forum, I post with the permission of its author. I thought it worth posting here:
2Thess. 3:6 "6 And we charge you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother walking disorderly, and not according to the tradition which they have received of us."
2Thess. 2:14 "Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle."
2Tim. 2:2 "And the things which thou hast heard of me by many witnesses, the same commend to faithful men, who shall be fit to teach others also." (We see four generations of people being taught: 1. Paul, 2. Timothy, 3. The men Timothy teaches, 4. The men they then teach. That's Tradition.)
Hebrews 2:17 Wherefore it behoved him in all things to be made like unto his brethren, that he might become a merciful and faithful priest before God, that he might be a propitiation for the sins of the people.
Hebrews 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly vocation, consider the apostle and high priest of our confession, Jesus:
Hebrews 5:1 For every high priest taken from among men, is ordained for men in the things that appertain to God, that he may offer up gifts and sacrifices for sins" (Our priests offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Eucharistic Feast for all men everywhere.)
Hebrews 5:6 As he saith also in another place: Thou art a priest for ever, according to the order of Melchizedek. (Melchizedek offered bread and wine as an unbloody sacrifice before God, our priests do the same by offering Christ under the appearance of bread and wine, as an unbloody sacrifice.)
1 Timothy 4:14 "Neglect not the grace that is in thee, which was given thee by prophesy, with imposition of the hands of the priesthood." (Our priests are ordained by the imposition of hands by the bishop.)
Heb 7:24-25, 27-28 "But this, for that he continueth for ever, hath an everlasting priesthood, Whereby he is able also to save for ever them that come to God by him; always living to make intercession for us. ... For the law maketh men priests, who have infirmity: but the word of the oath, which was since the law, the Son who is perfected for evermore."
1 Peter 2:5 "Be you also as living stones built up, a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ." (Our priests offer sacrifices in a spiritual house aka a Church)
Acts 1:20, 23-26 "For it is written in the book of Psalms: Let their habitation become desolate, and let there be none to dwell therein. And his bishopric let another take. ... And they appointed two, Joseph, called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias. And praying, they said: Thou, Lord, who knowest the hearts of all men, show whether of these two thou hast chosen, To take the place of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas hath by transgression fallen, that he might go to his own place. And they gave them lots, and the lot fell upon Matthias, and he was numbered with the eleven apostles. " (We call that apostolic succession. Our bishops are successors in a straight line from the original apostles.)
1Tim. 3:1-5 "1 A faithful saying: if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. It behoveth therefore a bishop to be blameless, the husband of one wife, sober, prudent, of good behaviour, chaste, given to hospitality, a teacher, Not given to wine, no striker, but modest, not quarrelsome, not covetous, but One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all chastity. But if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?" (The office of Bishop is transferrable, else how could anyone desire it, and why would Paul tell Timothy how to choose men to be bishops?)
Titus 1:7-11 "For a bishop must be without crime, as the steward of God: not proud, not subject to anger, not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre: But given to hospitality, gentle, sober, just, holy, continent: Embracing that faithful word which is according to doctrine, that he may be able to exhort in sound doctrine, and to convince the gainsayers. For there are also many disobedient, vain talkers, and seducers: especially they who are of the circumcision: Who must be reproved, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake." (Here Paul give the same info to Titus on how to select a Bishop)
1 Peter 2:25 "For you were as sheep going astray; but you are now converted to the shepherd and bishop of your souls."
Mk.16:16 "He that believeth, and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall not be saved." A person needs to do this when they are old enough to make the descision on their own...do they not?
Children were to be circumcised 8 days after it was born, and it made the child part of God's convenant:
Gen 18:12 "An infant of eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations: he that is born in the house, as well as the bought servant shall be circumcised, and whosoever is not of your stock: And my covenant shall be in your flesh for a perpetual covenant."
Luke 1:59 "And it came to pass, that on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they called him by his father's name Zachary"
Baptism is the new circumcision:
Col 2:11-12 "In whom also you are circumcised with circumcision not made by hand, in despoiling of the body of the flesh, but in the circumcision of Christ: Buried with him in baptism, in whom also you are risen again by the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him up from the dead.
Therefore since all circumcisions occurred eight days after the child was born, so now does baptism.
1 Corinthians 1:16 "And I baptized also the household of Stephanus; besides, I know not whether I baptized any other."
Acts 16:15 "And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying: If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide there. And she constrained us."
James 2:18-26 "But some man will say: Thou hast faith, and I have works: show me thy faith without works; and I will show thee, by works, my faith. Thou believest that there is one God. Thou dost well: the devils also believe and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, offering up Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou, that faith did co-operate with his works; and by works faith was made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled, saying: Abraham believed God, and it was reputed to him to justice, and he was called the friend of God. Do you see that by works a man is justified; and not by faith only? And in like manner also Rahab the harlot, was not she justified by works, receiving the messengers, and sending them out another way? For even as the body without the spirit is dead; so also faith without works is dead."
I thought it was something we could all read with profit. I'd be very interested in any comments.
In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:10)