17 votes

Was Jesus crucified naked?

He most likely was crucified naked - this is consistent with the biblical narrative of the guards casting lots for his garment and with standard historical practice. In the paintings, the artists ...
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17 votes

Among modern critics who believe in the attributed authorship of the Gospels, what are their arguments?

This is part two of a two part answer. See my previous post for general arguments. Specific books Matthew External - On Matthew Papias writes, "Matthew collected the oracles in the Hebrew ...
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16 votes

Why do Catholic laity cross themselves three times before the Gospel is read?

Before the Gospel is read, a Catholic makes signs of the cross, with the thumb, on his or her forehead, mouth, and heart, which represents that the Catholic must understand the Gospel, proclaim it, ...
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14 votes

Among modern critics who believe in the attributed authorship of the Gospels, what are their arguments?

This is part one of a two part post The assertion in a comment on the question that no scholar "believes that the books were authored by the names on the books" is just plain false. The ...
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  • 7,736
14 votes

Does the Catholic Church officially claim that the Bible is insufficient without tradition?

Yes she (Catholic Church) does. I've copied the pertinent parts from the previous poster's quotes to show this. 82 As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation ...
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14 votes

What objective, foolproof method do Eastern Orthodox have for working out which side is correct in the case of a Schism?

In essence you are asking an epistemological question: How can one side "know" that it is correct in a theological debate? The question could just as well apply to any Christian body, let alone the ...
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  • 5,372
13 votes
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Was Jesus good at singing?

There is no information on the quality of Jesus' singing The Catena Aurea includes commentaries on this verse from Origen, Bede, Rabanus, Chrysostom, Hilary, and Jerome and not one of them talk about ...
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  • 6,137
12 votes
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Does Scripture mention whether it rained before the flood?

In support of the idea that it did not rain is the very next verse: Genesis 2:6 But a mist went up from the earth and watered the whole face of the ground. No further mention is made of rain ...
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  • 7,470
12 votes
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What is the origin of the story that James had knees as hard as a camel's, because of his praying?

The first recorded instance of the tradition comes from Hegesippus, a second century Christian writer. Unfortunately, his works have been lost, except for a small portion of his writings quoted by ...
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  • 7,736
11 votes

Why do Catholic laity cross themselves three times before the Gospel is read?

Why do Catholics sign themselves three (3) times just before the Gospel is read? To understand the significance of this tradition, let us take a look into its origins. Concerning the making the ...
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  • 52.9k
10 votes
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Why do some Christains feel the obligation to remove their hats during prayer?

One of my churches used this passage when requesting all men remove their hats during times of prayer: 1 Cor. 11:4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his ...
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  • 7,470
9 votes

Why do Catholic laity cross themselves three times before the Gospel is read?

Contrary to what you say about missals, the rubrics in my missal (The CTS New Daily Missal) say that before the reading of the gospel, "He [the deacon/priest] makes the Sign of the Cross on the book ...
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8 votes

Was the Assumption of Mary a belief in the early church?

Pope Pius XII's 1 Nov. 1950 Apostolic Constitution defining the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mother, Munificentissimus Deus, says "that, since ancient times, there have been both in ...
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8 votes
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When did a "formal act of correction" of a pope's statement happen in the past?

The Doctor of the Church St. Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) collected 40 cases—from Pope St. Peter to Pope Innocent VIII (reigned 1484-1492)—of where a pope or anti-pope was said to have erred in faith ...
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  • 32.6k
8 votes
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Is there any theological basis for the eating of lamb at Easter?

It seems that the Catholic tradition of eating lamb at Easter was first documented in the 7th century: “The oldest prayer for the blessing of lambs can be found in the seventh-century sacramentary (...
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7 votes

Where does the Catholic tradition that Mary did not have pain giving birth to Jesus come from?

Extensive biblical and traditional material advocating for Mary's painless childbirth can be found from "The Virginity of Our Lady in Partu". Many Protestants reject this teaching, but most are ...
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7 votes

Why do some Christains feel the obligation to remove their hats during prayer?

This tradition was apparently begun by Paul as a sign of respect for Christ. But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of ...
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  • 13.2k
7 votes
Accepted

Why do Roman Catholics consider eating fish on Friday a good work?

The "good work" that one can do by eating fish on Fridays is penance. Perhaps it's hard to understand if you love fish and abhor meat, but that's not the case for most people. The following lines ...
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7 votes
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When is earliest mention of the Church tradition that Jesus was born in a cave?

The earliest reference I can find is Justin Martyr (c. 100 – 165 AD) who wrote in Dialog With Trypho: But when the Child was born in Bethlehem, since Joseph could not find a lodging in that ...
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7 votes
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According to Catholic Church tradition, where, when, how and by whom did the devotion of the Stations of the Cross begin?

If you are asking specifically about The Stations of The Cross as we know them today in the West, that is to say: the practice of placing symbolic artwork around a worship space depicting the events ...
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  • 1,626
7 votes

Why do people call Mary Magdalene the "Black Madonna"?

Mary Magdalene is known as the "Black Madonna" and conflated with a fertility goddess (Isis, the Black Goddess) in Gnostic thought, popular among Templars and Cathars back in the day and with more ...
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  • 2,958
7 votes
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How would Jesus write his full name as, in civil records?

First, I'd point out that even in modern times full names are far from unambiguous. My own fairly uncommon first, middle, and last name together are not enough to uniquely single me out. All legal ...
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7 votes
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Do any denominations use the full form of INRI?

Do any denominations use the full form of INRI? The short answer is yes. First of all, there are several denominations that have the tradition of have of displaying crucifixes in their church, such ...
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  • 52.9k
7 votes
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Did the women disciples of Jesus go to his tomb on Sunday morning to perform an optional Jewish ritual?

In early Jewish beliefs, the tomb would have remained open for three days, but no longer as the body would have decayed and begun to stink. The tomb, however, was not immediately closed over the dead....
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  • 10.3k
6 votes

Where does the Catholic tradition that Mary did not have pain giving birth to Jesus come from?

Her painless childbirth follows from these truths of divine revelation: Painful childbirth is one of the punishments of Original Sin (Gen. 3:16: "in travail shalt thou bring forth children")...
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  • 32.6k
6 votes

Why do Salvation Army members wear uniforms in the church?

As a Soldier of The Salvation Army, I wear my uniform, in the same way others might wear a cross around their neck or something, the uniform identifies the wearer as a soldier of The Salvation Army, ...
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6 votes

Does Scripture mention whether it rained before the flood?

It may be reading things a little too much into the text, but it is possible to infer the prior existence of rain from God's address to Noah in: Genesis 7:4 ESV For in seven days I will send rain ...
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  • 12.4k
6 votes
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When does a tradition become a Tradition?

So the Catholic Church bases its beliefs on the truths revealed to it by God; that is, on Revelation from Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. This revelation comes in two parts: Scripture, which has ...
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