Sat, 30 June 2012
If you read some older English translations of the Bible, like the Catholic Douay-Rheims (pub. 1609) or the Protestant King James (pub. 1611) you come across some passages that seem a bit mysterious. For example in the Douay-Rheims, in Psalms 91:11 we read:
"But my horn shall be exalted like that of the unicorn."
In the equivalent verse in the King James (Ps. 92:10) we read:
"But my horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn."
In reading such passages, you might think, what on earth does that mean? In these cases, the horn is being used as a symbol of strength or vigor. The Psalmist is saying that thanks to God, I'm going to be given a lot of strength and vigor, so praise God.
Fine, but what's this stuff about unicorns? I, mean does this mean unicorns are real?
In this episode we go to the heart of the matter and reveals the startling truth about what the Bible might be referring to in these passages.
We also look at how the word "unicorn" got into these passages in the first place and what ancient but real creature the translators may have been referring to. (Unless you've heard this before, it can come as a real surprise.
Sat, 23 June 2012
There is a common argument used against the idea of purgatory in some circles which goes like this: "St. Paul says that 'to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord' (2 Cor. 5:8). It's that simple: If you're a Christian and you aren't in your body then you are with Jesus in heaven. There is no room for purgatory in St. Paul's view. Purgatory is just a Catholic fable--a 'man made tradition.'"
Is this true?
It turns out that if you examine what St. Paul really said, the whole argument is based on a misquotation. St. Paul said nothing of the kind.
Furthermore, if you look elsewhere in St. Paul's writings--to the very same church he was addressing in his "absent from the body" passage--you find strong evidence for purgatory.
Far from being a Catholic fable, purgatory is rooted in the thought of the Apostle Paul himself--as I show in this episode.
Sat, 16 June 2012
In this episode of the program I answer two questions regarding apostolic succession and whether, in fact, we have an unbroken chain going back to the apostles.
The first question comes from Marci in Mexico, who wonders about the effect that various practices have on the liceity (lawfulness) and validity of episcopal consecrations.
The second question comes from a gentleman who asks about a particular figure from the 1500s--Cardinal Scipione Rebiba--who has a very unusual property: 91% of all modern Catholic bishops trace their episcopal lineage back to him, and we're not entirely sure who ordained Rebiba.
What are the implications of that for apostolic succession.
In the process of answering this, I invite Dr. Andrew Jones of Logos Bible Software on the show. Dr. Jones has a doctorate in medieval history, so this is right up his alley.
In the second half of the show I keep Dr. Jones on the line to update us about current Logos Bible Software projects, including the newly-released Catechism of the Catholic Church set (which you may already have--free of charge) and their forthcoming translations of certain key works by St. Thomas Aquinas that have never been translated into English before. (I'm excited about getting my hands on those!)
Fri, 1 June 2012
At some point in their lives, virtually everyone has wondered whether they can be forgiven for what they've done. The good news is, they can!
But sometimes the doubts linger, particularly for people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and particularly in connection with certain passages in the Bible, such as some in the book of Hebrews that deal with the subject of apostasy--the complete rejection of the Christian faith.
Can an apostate be forgiven? If you've ever knowingly and deliberately rejected Christ, will he take you back? And what is the real meaning of those passages in Hebrews?
In this episode Jimmy responds to a gentleman who is struggling with these very issues.
He demonstrates that the Hebrews passages do not mean what the gentleman fears and reveals the infinite mercy of God.
The good news is: No matter what you've done, if you are willing to come back to God, God is eager to take you back. He loves you, and your sins are not greater than his love.