This revelation of God is passed onto us through Scripture and Tradition. Tradition came first. We used the word “Tradition” to describe everything that was passed on by Jesus to the Church, particularly to the apostles. The criteria to be an apostle was to have witnessed what Jesus had said and done since he was baptised by John (Acts 1:21-22) . Some of this Tradition was written down in the Church under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit as the scriptures. But the rest of the Tradition continues to be passed on generation to generation.

“Sacred tradition takes the word of God entrusted by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit to the Apostles, and hands it on to their successors in its full purity” (DV 9)

“Sacred Scripture is the word of God …. writing under the inspiration of the divine Spirit” (DV 9)

The Scriptures is the Bible both Old and New Testaments. This Tradition and Scripture together make one collection called the deposit of revelation or the deposit of the Word of God. Our understanding of this deposit grows through time, but does not change in essence. Jesus gave the Church a special gift to keep its understanding of the Word of God on track until he comes again. This special gift is called the teaching office of the Church or Magisterium.

“Sacred tradition and Sacred Scripture form one sacred deposit of the word of God” (DV 10)


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