[quote author=“frankr”]Unfortunately cannot answe this question in a short post. If you want the teaching on Scripture it is summed up in the Encyclical, Dei Verbum. It acknowledges the divine and human authors and the historical context in which they are written.
Well, we’ve talked about is fairly extensively before (last September to be precise):
[quote author=“frankr”]It comes down to the word sacred. Yes all the Sctiptures are sacred, all the scriptures are Holy Spirit coauthored. This does not traanslate that all the scriptures are doctrinal. There are posts on this thread I believe about the Church banning the bible from the laity in the middle ages. The danger that they perceived was not that they would read it for themselves and further their education. No the danger was that they would read the Bible and misinterpret the Scriptures. If you want examples of what they feared then read through any of these threads and see how easily scripture can be misinterpreted. Miller just wrote a long passage showing how the Scriptures can be used to justify anything. He has a point. This is why the Catholic Church has always held that the interpretation of Scripture is the job of the Church. This does not mean that we cannot read and meditate and interpret Scriptures but it does mean there are limits. We cannot say that Jesus was not God although we could read the Gospel of Mark and come to that conclusion. We cannot say that Jesus was not man though we might get that from reading John’s letters. The Church sets the boundaries for the discussion.
So yes Exodus is sacred but the Bible is not a rule book that one picks up and says God said this therefore I can do it. It has to be taken in context of the whole Christian faith. If you want examples of the misuse of Scripture look to Scripture itself. When Jesus is tempted by the Devil what does Satan do? He quotes Scripture? “It is written .... If you want to understand how some of the old testament writings changed with Jesus look at the words of Jesus prohibiting Divorce “Moses allowed divorce because the people were hard headed… I tell you…” ( I wish I knew my Scripture better but you get the point.)
Finally the church from the beginning has always stressed the four senses of Scripture: the historical (literal), the tropological (moral), the allegorical, and the anagogical. Scripture has to read in this way.
And here is my response:
[quote author=“waltercat”]Well, I thought I was following you, but now I’m not so sure.
It is very uncomfortable to have to admit that not only are texts that condone slavery sacred but also co-authored by God (in his guise as the Holy Spirit). It would be more comfortable to say that humans authored the texts and the Holy Spirit guided us to the proper conclusion concerning which are sacred. But this option would allow us to condem Exodus 21:20 as non-sacred tripe; it would allow us the intellectually and morally satisfying option of rejeting the repulsive parts of the Bible.
I understand, thanks to your help, that Exodus 21:20 is not Catholic Doctrine. But I just can’t figure out why anyone would want to claim that it is sacred or that God co-wrote it. If God really is the co-author, why didn’t he, during some part of the revision process, say, “You know, we really out to strike that repulsive bit about slavery.” The fact that He did not makes me skeptical of his moral superiority.
I was in a different part of the country back then, and obviously much more with it, intellectually speaking. (I have always been suspicious of the water in California).
My very good question still stands. Is Ex 21:20 co-authored by God? If it is not doctrinal, why claim that God co-authored it? And if it is not doctrinal, isn’t that tantamount to saying that it’s erroneous?
HERE is a link to the discussion of which the above quotes are a part. The quotes occur on page nine of the thread.