Debtors Prison?


#1

In a debate I am having with a Pastor on Purgatory (see my earlier thread for details) I brought up Matt5:22-25, and his response was that there was an actual Debtors Prison:confused: But before I start to chuckle and look foolish by how i respond, has anyone ever heard of this ??? :slight_smile: I would like to see proof for that claim !!!


#2

Dear jmc66,

Do you mean were there actual debtor’s prisons?
The answer is yes.

If I’m not mistaken, sometimes whole families were
thrown into prison, if a man was in debt and could
not pay.
If you need a link, I’ll try to find one for you.

Best wishes,
reen12


#3

Thank You REEN12,
If you have a link, that would be great. I am guessing that he must have thought that they were being thrown into prison for a debt, but it sounds like to me it has to do with how you treat people in general, and the price you pay for how you treated people.


#4

jmc66,

Yes, there were debtors’ prisons (in fact, they were around in England as late as the 1800s and maybe even later). But I’m not sure how that constitutes an argument against Purgatory—if anything, it strengthens it. The way debtors’ prisons were set up, the person owing money was there until the money was paid. Obviously, he could not work his usual job to pay it off, but had to rely on family and friends to get him out. That is why we pray for the souls in Purgatory: we are helping to “pay their debt”, since they are no longer able to affect their own destiny (which is why we must make the most of our time on earth—that is when we have the ability to make reparations for our sins). But notice the verse in Matthew—this is NOT hell, as one can eventually get out. It is certainly NOT heaven!

I would suggest going to catholic.com and looking up “Purgarory”, if you haven’t already done so. There’s probably something there on the topic.


#5

actually, in a debtors prison the prisoners were put to work for a very small daily payment which would be applied to their debt. Thus they could eventually get out without the assistance of others, but it would take much, much longer. and yes, there were debtors prisons, i visited one in norwitch england just last saturday.


#6

[quote=Sherlock]jmc66,

Yes, there were debtors’ prisons (in fact, they were around in England as late as the 1800s and maybe even later). But I’m not sure how that constitutes an argument against Purgatory—if anything, it strengthens it. The way debtors’ prisons were set up, the person owing money was there until the money was paid. Obviously, he could not work his usual job to pay it off, but had to rely on family and friends to get him out. That is why we pray for the souls in Purgatory: we are helping to “pay their debt”, since they are no longer able to affect their own destiny (which is why we must make the most of our time on earth—that is when we have the ability to make reparations for our sins). But notice the verse in Matthew—this is NOT hell, as one can eventually get out. It is certainly NOT heaven!

I sure am glad I asked, I had never heard of this and would have felt foolish saying there was no sych thing.But yes I think you are right, his argument is those particular verses are referring to a debtors prison

I would suggest going to catholic.com and looking up “Purgarory”, if you haven’t already done so. There’s probably something there on the topic.
[/quote]


#7

jmc66,

You wrote: “But yes I think you are right, his argument is those particular verses are referring to a debtors prison”

I just don’t see how that constitutes an argument. You might want to ask him exactly how that fact contradicts Catholic teaching, because it doesn’t. There are other verses as well that support Purgarory.

One HUGE hole in his argument is his own position as a Protestant: since private judgement regarding Scriptural interpretation is part of Protestant theology (Scripture doesn’t interpret itself), it seems to me that he shouldn’t have any logical disagreements with Purgatory. There is no Scripture that contradicts it, and there is Scripture that can be interpreted as supporting the concept—so what’s the fuss? By what authority is he telling you that the Catholic doctrine is wrong?


#8

Just a quick thought:

Jesus tells a story about a man who owed the king a
huge sum of money. The king forgives this
steward’s debt.

The steward then goes out and hassles a man who owes
him a very small sum of money.

The king hears of this, and has the steward thrown
into prison for the original debt the steward owed him.
I think it’s in Matthew’s gospel.

If you like, you can go to:
www.google.com
and put in the term debtor’s prison New Testament
and see what websites there are on this topic.

reen12


#9

[quote=Sherlock]jmc66,

You wrote: “But yes I think you are right, his argument is those particular verses are referring to a debtors prison”

I just don’t see how that constitutes an argument. You might want to ask him exactly how that fact contradicts Catholic teaching, because it doesn’t. There are other verses as well that support Purgarory.

One HUGE hole in his argument is his own position as a Protestant: since private judgement regarding Scriptural interpretation is part of Protestant theology (Scripture doesn’t interpret itself), it seems to me that he shouldn’t have any logical disagreements with Purgatory. There is no Scripture that contradicts it, and there is Scripture that can be interpreted as supporting the concept—so what’s the fuss? By what authority is he telling you that the Catholic doctrine is wrong?
[/quote]

Thanks for replying Sherlock,You bring up a excellent point,he should be thrilled i am interpreting scripture,but he’s not thrilled at all that it is not the same interpretation as his own.:slight_smile:


#10

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