March 21, 2014

In a recent post we looked at the question of how many apostles there were.

The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. In addition to the original Twelve apostles, there was also Matthias, who replaced Judas as one of the Twelve, and Paul, who was never a member of the twelve.

Are there any other apostles who weren’t members of the Twelve?

There is at least one who is easy to name...

March 12, 2014

There were twelve apostles, right?

Actually, it’s more complicated than that.

An initial complication is the fact that Judas Iscariot died and was replaced by Matthias (Acts 1:12-26).

You could look at that and say, “Okay, there were thirteen apostles, total, but only twelve at one time.”

What about Paul?

Some (at least some in the Protestant community) have suggested that, since the New Testament doesn’t record...

February 14, 2014

By now, most of us are well aware of how Alana Horowitz (and any number of other secular writers), writing for The Huffpost, informed us of just how surprised people were when Pope...

November 30, 2013

Few texts have been the occasion for the spilling of more ink than Matthew 16:17-19: 

And Jesus answered him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven,...

November 12, 2013

My friend Dennis Barton lives near Liverpool, England, and operates an apostolate called The Church in History Information Centre. Over the last several decades he has defended the Church from many erroneous historical claims. He also has had an interest in scriptural disputes.

Dennis became friends with the late Bernard Orchard, OSB, one of the twentieth century's top biblical scholars. One of Orchard's lasting interests was the Synoptic Problem: What is the literary relationship...