Dr. John Bergsma, Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and Senior Fellow at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, talks about the Jewish monastic community known as The Essenes, thought to be the transcribers of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
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Dr. John Bergsma, Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and Senior Fellow at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, discusses the historical roots of the practice of celibacy.
Dr. John Bergsma, Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and Senior Fellow at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, discusses how the Dead Sea Scrolls help refute one of Martin Luther’s most controversial claims.
In what ways are the Dead Sea Scrolls significant to the Catholic faith?
In the winter of 1946, three Arab shepherds were tending their flocks along the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea. One was amusing himself by throwing rocks into the caves that dotted the limestone bluffs above the shoreline. He was startled, however, when a rock produced the sound of shattering pottery. Climbing the cliffs a few days later to investigate, the shepherd entered the cave to find broken pottery and intact clay jars. One jar contained three leather scrolls, including a complete copy of the Book of Isaiah in Hebrew from the second century BC—about a thousand years older than any other Hebrew copy of a biblical book. This was the beginning of the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, perhaps the most important archeological find of the 20th century.
This Sunday we celebrate the birth of John the Baptist, a great saint and biblical character who led a very difficult life and ministry.
In hindsight, the conflict that led to his demise and death has a strangely modern ring to it: he was jailed by Herod Antipas for speaking out on marriage (Mark 6:17-18).
“The mass teaches … that Christ is bodily under the form of bread and wine, and therefore is to be worshipped in them; so that the mass, at bottom, is nothing else than a denial of the one sacrifice and sufferings of Jesus Christ, and a condemnable idolatry.” (from the Heidelberg Catechism, Q&A 80)