[A Catholic said] “You Protestants have some big problems if you cannot see the difference between Veneration and Adoration. Your understanding is so one dimensional. Because you have a limited view of Divine Revelation; only accepting scripture without tradition. Take a look at your Bible which says, ” Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is living in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us.”(2 Thes. 3:6) and also, ” So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter.”(2 Thes 2:15, RSV)”
The word tradition in those two passages has nothing to do with Catholic theology, that is number 1. Remember, context ascribes to a word the meaning of it which is the key to understanding Holy Scripture.
Let us look at 2 Thes. 3:6, in that passage the keyword is: idle…Paul is saying not to be idle and remember the tradition spoken about that issue. Paul is not referring to a doctrine that is passed down verbally that only the Catholics know but, their traditions has to do with the message of idleness that was already written down which are the Scriptures. In 2 Thes. 3:6, he was referring to this passage:
1 Timothy 5:13
13 At the same time, they also learn to be idle, going from house to house; they are not only idle, but are also gossips† and busybodies, saying things they shouldn’t say.
Now, let’s look at 2 Thes. 2:15
2 Thessalonians 2:15
15 So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold to the traditions you were taught, whether by what we said or what we wrote.
The question to ask is, [what traditions do they, the church must hold to?] Another question to ask, for understanding this passage, [do we know what the Apostles taught?]
The first answer to the question would be that the traditions are the same message as that of Scripture and the second question, the answer is, yes, we do know what they taught. Below are 5 points that clarify what the Apostle Paul meant by traditions.
1. We stand firm in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
2. The Apostles taught [verbally, traditions or written down, our Bible which is the same message] pertaining to Jesus Christ.
3. Jesus said in Matthew 7 [referring to standing firm] that to hear His Word and to do it, a person has built his house [his life] on the rock [saving faith in Jesus Christ] and nothing will bring him down [destroy his faith in Jesus]
4. Paul with the rest of the Apostles will never contradict with the traditions they taught and what has been written down which are the Scriptures.
5. The traditions and what has been penned down [our Bible] are both and the same, the Scriptures since there is only one author, the Holy Spirit and one message about Jesus Christ.
What are the traditions? Basically, some places that the 12 Apostles and Paul visited, they were taught the Word of God but, later some got letters containing the Word of God that was taught to them and some did not. So, both the word tradition and the Word of God were the same message.