Scripture Texts Interpreted by the Church

Scripture Texts Interpreted by the Church Definitively

There are many interpretations of certain biblical passages that have been officially and definitively disallowed by the Universal Magisterium of the Catholic Church. However, a definitive, positive interpretation has been provided for only seven biblical texts. All have to do with the sacraments and their institution by Christ and all were pronounced by the Council of Trent. One must hold at least to these meanings as taught by the Church. Addi¬tional, non-contradictory meanings are not precluded. The references can be looked up in The Christian Faith. They are as follows:

John 3:5 When Jesus here says that we must be born of water and the Spirit, he implies that real water must be used for a valid baptism.

Luke 22:19 & I Cor. 11:24 When Jesus said to the apostles, “Do this in memory of me,” he meant to confer priestly ordination.

John 20:23 The power conferred on the apostles to bind and loose sins authorized them and their successors to forgive sins in God’s name in the sacrament of penance and reconciliation.

John 20:22 The sacrament of penance was instituted by Jesus who truly conveyed the Holy Spirit to the apostles on Easter Sunday afternoon.

Ro. 5:12 Adam’s sin truly caused all of his descendants to be born into a state of separation from God called Original Sin.

Jas. 5:14 Christ instituted the sacrament of the anointing of the sick.