The Roman Catholic Church claims the authority to decide which writings were inspired by the Holy Spirit, and must therefore be included in the New Testament. She also claims her authority can be shown from the New Testament.

It appears that Catholics are arguing in a circle ~ The Church authenticates the New Testament and the New Testament authenticates the Church. But this is not so.

Catholics claim the information in the Gospels, when treated as normal history, shows that Christ founded the Church as an infallible witness to His teachings. Once this point has been established, the Roman Catholic Church is able to claim that she has the authority to proclaim that the Gospels are not merely historical records but the inspired word of God

When section 19 of Dei Verbum was being drafted, it was suggested that the phrase: “believed and continues to believe” should be used, as it was a truth always accepted in the Church through an act of faith. But: “held and continues to hold”, [or “maintains and continues to maintain”]  was adopted because the historicity of the gospels was a truth which could be accessed by reason, not by faith alone.

For further information see: The Authors of the Gospels at

This version: 17th September 2013