I presume you are so far acquainted with ecclesiastical history as to know, and the bishop who has answered me has been obliged to acknowlege the fact, that the books that compose the New Testament were voted by yeas and nays to be theword of God as you now vote a law, by the popish councils of Nice and Laodocia, about 1450 years ago. With respect to the fact there is no dispute, neither do I mention it for the sake of controversy. This vote may appear authority enough to some, and not authority enough to others. It is proper however that every body should know the fact.

Thomas Paine, letter to Samuel Adams, January 1, 1803