[forthright] Going Beyond

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From: "Forthright Magazine" <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Mon, 27 Jun 2005 18:26:12 -0300
Forthright Magazine
http://www.forthright.net
Straight to the Cross


COLUMN: Final Phase

Going Beyond
by J. Randal Matheny, editor

   "I have applied these things to myself and
   Apollos for your benefit, brothers, that
   you may learn by us not to go beyond what
   is written, that none of you may be puffed
   up in favor of one against another" (1
   Corinthians 4:6, ESV).

In 1996, Catholic translators in the U.S.
submitted their work on the rites of ordination of
priests to the Vatican. It was refused in a biting
letter, and the cardinal told the American bishop
to get rid of them and start all over. Why?

Because, he wrote, "any variant upon the text ...
that goes beyond what is specified" in the
Catholic orders was not within their right to
change. "They are the sphere of action of the
Bishops of a local Conference, not of
translators," wrote the cardinal./1

Who says the world doesn't understand the
principle of specification (often wrongly called
the argument from silence)? When it suits their
purpose, Catholics, evangelicals, everybody uses
it, because it is a basic way the human mind
works.

And God works that way, too. When he specifies
something, he wants no variants on his Text.

Paul applied this principle in 1 Corinthians 4 to
over-valuing one of God's servants above others.

The Hebrew writer said Jesus couldn't have been a
priest under the Jewish system because God had
specified that men from the tribe of Levi would be
his priests. Since he said nothing about the other
tribes like Judah (Hebrews 7:14), Jesus was
disqualified! So it was necessary to remove the
old system for him to be our high priest, after
the order of Melchizadek.

All throughout Scripture, this principle of not
going beyond what is written is observed.

We might do we to observe it, also, and not only
when it suits us.
__________
1/ www.catholic-pages.com/mass/pontificale.asp

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