False Dichotomies

I was inspired by this post to consider that nearly all attacks on Catholicism are false dichotomies - presupposing that 2 related statements are disjunctive rather than conjunctive. Some examples of false dichotomies used to attack Catholicism:

Faith and works: If I’m saved by faith, then my works don’t affect my salvation.

Bible and Tradition: If God inspired the writing of the Bible, then tradition must only be the product of men.

The Holy Spirit and the Magisterium: If God gives the Holy Spirit to every believer, then I don’t need to be told what to do by anyone else.

Priesthood of all believers: If I’m a priest, and Jesus is the High Priest, then I have no need for any other priest.

God and the Saints: If I am to worship God alone, then I shouldn’t venerate or pray to the saints in Heaven.

The Pope and the Bishops: If all bishops are equal, then the Pope has no authority outside the Diocese of Rome.

The Pope and the Patriarchs: If all patriarchs are equal, then the Pope has no authority outside the western patriarchate.

The Eucharist: If our physical senses tell us it is bread, then it can’t be Jesus.

Jesus and Mary: If Jesus is the one mediator between God and man, then Mary is not the Mediatrix.

The Hypostatic Union: If Jesus is God, then he can’t be man.

The Trinity: If God is one, then the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit cannot each be God.

Atheism: If I can’t physically sense God, then He must not exist.

There is another list of false dichotomies here:
150 reasons Why I am a Catholic
Scroll down to number 72.

Thank you folks!
i downloaded both posts, and Dave Armstrong’s as well. Took a screen shot of the first post.
i remember reading his account in “Surprised by Truth”. Should re-read it.

regarding your link:
Scott Hahn gave a good talk 10 or 11 years ago titled “The Forerunners of the Reformation”.


Great list.

BTW, did you forget to add “alone” in #1?
Faith and works: If I’m saved by faith alone, then my works don’t affect my salvation.

Here’s my list of false dichotomies, or folks who insert “ONLYs” where none are required.

• The Bible ONLY folks.
• The Faith ONLY folks.
• The King James Version of the Bible ONLY folks.
• The Latin ONLY folks
• The Communion Should Be In The Hands ONLY folks
• The Science ONLY folks.
• The English ONLY folks.
• The Intercessory Prayer should be done in Private ONLY folks
• The Jesus is Man ONLY folks.
• The Jesus is God ONLY folks.
• The We should follow the words of Jesus ONLY folks
• The We should follow the words of Paul ONLY folks
• God is spirit ONLY folks

The Catholic Both/And is what makes Catholicism so formidable to argue against.

Oh, and I just thought of one more:

The “We need to pray in tongues ONLY” folks

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