Help! Debate with an Anti-Cathilic


#1

I have been debating with an anti-Catholic who has produced many rescources. I need help in validating, finding and debunking or putting these document into the Catholic perspective. Any help would be great. Documents are as follows:

DECRETAL DE TRANSLAT
Episcop. Cap.

Claims the Pope has power to change times, to abrogate laws, and to dispense with all things, even the precepts of Christ. Also says that The Vatican has “thought to change” the laws of God, even though they really and truly weren’t changed at all, just concealed in the paganistic shadows of the darkness they teach.

Father T. Enright, C.S.S.R.:

In concern of the Catholic Church as teh one church on the face of the earth which has the power, or claims power, to make laws binding on the conscience, binding before God, binding under penalty of hell-fire. Emphasis on the institution of Sunday and right of any other church to keep this day, first concerning virtue of the third commandment and claim that the papacy changed the fourth commandment and called it the third.

The Catholic Record
Sept. 1, 1923

Claim that Sunday is Catholic mark of authority and the Church is above the Bible, and this transference of Sabbath observance is proof of that fact.

A Doctrinal Catechism
Third Edition, p. 174, Stephen Keenan

Claim of substituted the observance of Sunday, the first day of the week, for the observance of Saturday, the seventh day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority.

I think by now it is appaerent that I am debating a 7th Day Adventist. He keeps bringing up other documents that I’ll just list:

The Catholic Press (Sunday, Catholic institution)

Catholic Church Extension Society
1975, Chicago, Illinois, Peter R. Kraemer (Claim that Protestants can go back to Sabbath worship)

Kirken og Romerstaten
(The Church and the Roman State) p. 256 (Sunday worshipt instituted by emperor)

Dr. Edward T. Hiscox, New York ministers’ conference
Nov. 13, 1893 (Sunday = ‘Sun god’ worship argument)

PROMTA BIBLIOTHICA (The Catholic encyclopedia)
Vol. 6 – Article, “Pope” (Pope can excommunicate angels from heaven)

LA CIVILA CATTLICA
March 18, 1871 (claims this proves every title given to Jesus Christ in the bible is stolen by the Pope)

CATHOLIC NATIONAL
July Edition, 1895 (Amazement concerning after a new Pope is ‘elected’, there is a new Christ on this earth."

JOSEPH DEVARBE’S CATECHISM
Page 279 (questions the power given to priests to forgive sins and questions whether such power is ‘scriptural’)

MICHAEL MULLER
"The Catholic Priest" pp. 78,79 (Questions scriptural basis of Roman Catholic priest to have authority over ‘heaven itself’)

THE CATHOLIC FERRARIS’S ECCLESIASTICAL DICTIONARY
(Believes this proves the Vatican claims that the Pope can change the law of God, modify it in any way he sees fit.)

I know this is a huge list, but I will greatly appreciate people’s help on replying to these things.

Pax Tecum,

John


#2

Why are you debating with this person?


#3

What flavor is this person (religiously)?
What is their point when they bring this up?
Or are they just throwing stuff at you?
Some of this stuff could easily be grouped…dealt with logically and dismissed.

Under the Mercy,

Matthew


#4

Yoiks. How did this happen to you?

On the Catholic Answers home page, there is a menu at the left linking to articles on subjects useful in Catholic Apologetics. You can also search the files from there. You might start by going to this link, which I recovered by doing a search for “Seventh Day Adventist:” catholic.com/library/seventh_day_adventism.asp

It is always wise to think of this not as a debate but as catechesis. You don’t need to come back point-by-point. Never take a combative stance.

Note that your interlocutor does not quote the citatations he gives but only summarizes them. Sometimes an anti-Catholic spin is put on a thing that has a perfectly reasonable interpretation. Nowhere is it said that the Church has the power to abrogate the moral or natural law. Some of the allegations are fatuous, such as the numbering of the Commandments; a careful reading indicates that there are actually eleven.

As early as possible, I would slide into an exposition of the origin of the canon of Scripture. SDA’s endorse sola scriptura. That is the weak link in all fundamentalist positions. You might ask how it is, if sola scriptura is such an infallible guide of faith, that other denominations endorse it don’t have a problem with worshiping on Sunday.

Get a copy of Karl Keating’s Catholicism and Fundamentalism and memorize the chapter on the canon of Scripture.

The Sabbath/Sunday issue is addressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (scborromeo.org/ccc.htm)

**2175 **Sunday is expressly distinguished from the sabbath which it follows chronologically every week; for Christians its ceremonial observance replaces that of the sabbath. In Christ’s Passover, Sunday fulfills the spiritual truth of the Jewish sabbath and announces man’s eternal rest in God. For worship under the Law prepared for the mystery of Christ, and what was done there prefigured some aspects of Christ:

Those who lived according to the old order of things have come to a new hope, no longer keeping the sabbath, but the Lord’s Day, in which our life is blessed by him and by his death.

(emphasis added)The Catechism has something pithy to say on almost every point an anti-Catholic will bring up. So go there first. Then come HERE! All you need to do in speaking with these people is show them that the Church has good reasons for whatever she claims or does. You won’t find people responding: “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! You’re right! I’m going to become a Catholic right now!” Ours is a long and deep faith tradition. People have been fed poisonous untruths about the Catholic Church (and sometimes our own history feeds the myths). It can take years to get past all that. So be patient, be confident, and always be gentle, though firm.

God be with you.


#5

Luke 24:1-6
1 But at daybreak on the first day of the week they took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb.
2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb;
3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
4 While they were puzzling over this, behold, two men in dazzling garments appeared to them.
5 They were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground. They said to them, "Why do you seek the living one among the dead?
6 He is not here, but he has been raised.

Acts 20:7
On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them, intending to leave the next day, and he prolonged his message until midnight.

1 Corinthians 16:2
On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come.

May God bless you.


#6

He could also tell you that the moon is made of green cheese and show you this recorded in many a childrens book, but I doubt that you or very many others would accept this without finding the actual facts.

The Church is said to have changed the day of worship. When in reality Christ Himself did and the Church only applied what Christ instituted.


#7

Those are not “The Good News”… far away from the Spirit of Truth.


#8

I would suggest you not look up the answers just yet. I would tell him to prove “his” soures, in context. Make sure its in “Catholic Context” too and not in “protestant context”. Make him have to research the details. The more Catholic material “he” looks at the more truth “he” will see in our Chruch. Don’t let him just say something and force you to do the research. This will drive you crazy as he will just change the subject and force you to do more research to prove him right or wrong. (Sometimes non-Catholics are right!)

Don’t follow his plan of submerging you in other peoples propaganda he likes. Make him do the work to prove his points. Remember too that Catholics have nearly 2,000 years of material that we use to referance current writtings. Catholics know the context and style of writting used. Anti-Catholics assume each document is an independant thing when it is not.

Research at your own pace the things you choose. He needs to research and verify his facts.


#9

[quote=Malachi4U] Don’t let him just say something and force you to do the research. This will drive you crazy as he will just change the subject . . .

Research at your own pace the things you choose. He needs to research and verify his facts.
[/quote]

Superb counsel, Malachi. :clapping:


#10

Oh boy, you are dealing with a die hard Sabbath keeper. In order to reach this person, you must first make him or her understand that we as Christians are not COMMANDED to worship on the seventh day Sabbath. The Sabbath was given to the children of Israel as a Perpetual covenant, between God and Israel. See Exodus 31:12-17.

Christians are under a NEW covenant unlike the old covenant of the law. We are NOT commanded under the new covenant to observe the Sabbath which was given TO Israel.

Furthermore, when Jesus arose from the dead, it was on Sunday, which affectionately became known in church history as “the Lord’s day”. Early Christians adopted the Lord’s day to assemble on because that is the day our Lord arose on and it was a fitting day of rejoicing.

The Catholic church NEVER changed the Sabbath to Sunday, because Christians never assembled on that day to begin with, But only on the Lord’s day. Please go to the Catholic answers home[page and read under the Fathers know best section under the Sabbath and read the quotes of the early fathers.

Your friend is trying to turn you into a seventh day Sabbath keeper, which is not commanded for you as a Christian to observe.

Ron from Ohio


#11

I thank you all for your help. It has all been beneficial, and has made me realise that I may need to change my approach. Granted, I may be discussing these things on a debate forum, but I could be more civil and put more emphasis on the other person doing research as well.

As for the summaries on here, I put them there, not knowing if to write them out would be considered plagerism or not.

One thing I did try, but may be more antagonism, was ask him why it was that, as one source on SDA history had noted, that Ellen G. White herself had performed a worship service on Sunday, despite all her rhetoric against Protestants as ‘assenting to the RCC’ and her belief that to worship on Sunday branded a person with the infamous ‘mark of the beast’.

Anyways, thanks again to all for the advise!

Pax Vobiscum,

John


#12

[quote=mercygate]Yoiks. How did this happen to you?

On the Catholic Answers home page, there is a menu at the left linking to articles on subjects useful in Catholic Apologetics. You can also search the files from there. You might start by going to this link, which I recovered by doing a search for “Seventh Day Adventist:” catholic.com/library/seventh_day_adventism.asp

It is always wise to think of this not as a debate but as catechesis. You don’t need to come back point-by-point. Never take a combative stance.
[/quote]

This is extremely good advice - it helps to keep the emotional temperature down; which in turn helps people to approach each other as reasonable human beings.

If not certain what this person believes, and what church, if any, they belong to - why not ask them ? :slight_smile:

It’s a good idea to go SDA sources to find what SDAs believe, and, why. So, it might be a good idea to read some of the main SDA books such as Ellen White’s The Great Controversy, or LeRoy Froom’s “The Prophetic Faith of Our Fathers”

The “Appendix” to “The Great Controversy” is probably a source of some of the quotations you give. ##

Note that your interlocutor does not quote the citatations he gives but only summarizes them. Sometimes an anti-Catholic spin is put on a thing that has a perfectly reasonable interpretation. Nowhere is it said that the Church has the power to abrogate the moral or natural law. Some of the allegations are fatuous, such as the numbering of the Commandments; a careful reading indicates that there are actually eleven.

As early as possible, I would slide into an exposition of the origin of the canon of Scripture. SDA’s endorse sola scriptura. That is the weak link in all fundamentalist positions. You might ask how it is, if sola scriptura is such an infallible guide of faith, that other denominations endorse it don’t have a problem with worshiping on Sunday.

Get a copy of Karl Keating’s Catholicism and Fundamentalism and memorize the chapter on the canon of Scripture.

The Sabbath/Sunday issue is addressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (scborromeo.org/ccc.htm)

(emphasis added)The Catechism has something pithy to say on almost every point an anti-Catholic will bring up. So go there first. Then come HERE! All you need to do in speaking with these people is show them that the Church has good reasons for whatever she claims or does. You won’t find people responding: “Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! You’re right! I’m going to become a Catholic right now!” Ours is a long and deep faith tradition. People have been fed poisonous untruths about the Catholic Church (and sometimes our own history feeds the myths). It can take years to get past all that. So be patient, be confident, and always be gentle, though firm.

God be with you.

However, what the CCC can’t do - because it was not designed for it - is, answer detailed historical quesstion such as precisely why the Church observed Sunday instead of the Sabbath, how early, or whether all Christians did so, at the same time. The CCC is no guide on anything but religious instruction; it’s not a replacement for Church law, Biblical exegesis, Church history, or any other branch of theology. The NT gives only some details about some aspects of Church life - most, it says nothing at all about most features of early Christian life. And this is tedious if one is arguing for Catholicism - because it meands doing research; equally, it does not help those who insist on using the Bible alone as a guide to Christian practice.


#13

Hi JCR,

I’ve debated 7 Day Adventists and they make outrageous claims. I’m real certain that ALL of these are taken out of context. I’m not even sure what some of abbreviated references are. Ask him to give you one that can be found on the internet.

I asked an Adventist one time this question: I said: OK, you say we’re wrong on everything, so, you tell me this: Give me ONE name of a christian leader in history that you totally agree with that lived AFTER the death of the last apostle and before 1,000ad?

Ask him that and no matter what answer he gives (if he can give one) you can show him how much he differs from that leader.

May God bless,

James224


#14

Ask this person if their church teaches anything except “don’t be Catholic”.


#15

Hi JCRAWF,

I found in my files a short debate I had with a 7 Day Adventist a few years ago. I would be glad to email it to you if you give your email address. It’s too long to put on this discussion board. I understand if you don’t want to give it to me but I don’t know what else to do. You may find something in there you could use.

May God bless,

James224


#16

Thanks again everyone!

The debate has calmed down for now, though probably because it is Saturday and supposed ot be his day of rest. Yet, knowing the sort of debate this has become, and what sort of debator he is, I expect a post probably as early as tomorrow.

However, I think I’ll probably back off for now.

Pax Tecum,

John


#17

:eek: ANTI-CATHOLIC! :eek: :eek: :eek:

When you find out that you have started to be “a prisoner” of the haters of the Catholic Church, just leave them. Use your time at better “things”. It’s easy to say, but even Jesus tells us to leave the enemies of the Church:

**Jesus says: “But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11“Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you” (Luke 10:10-11). **

Hope this link may be of help to you:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=792

**Best wishes and God Bless!

G.G.**


#18

Forget about the debate and just pray for this person. I’ve learned long ago, there are times when it’s not worth the effort of continuing a debate.

With SDA’s, JW’s and Mormons, it’s not really worth getting into a debate with them unless you can control the topic and flow of discussion. This means not only knowing the Catholic faith, but being very knowlegdeable in their beliefs and history as well.

SDA’s are notorious for pulling obscure quotes out of their @$$. This usually puts you on the defensive and makes you focus your efforts on investigating the source of the quote. IMHO it’s not worth it. I just pray for SDA’s, I don’t discuss with them.


#19

[quote=jcrawf]Thanks again everyone!

The debate has calmed down for now, though probably because it is Saturday and supposed ot be his day of rest. Yet, knowing the sort of debate this has become, and what sort of debator he is, I expect a post probably as early as tomorrow.

However, I think I’ll probably back off for now.

Pax Tecum,

John
[/quote]

Good idea. But as suggested by others, if it heats up again, you really should ask your interlocutor to produce the documents he cites because nowhere in a brief search I made, could I find any of them. Don’t even address alleged newspaper clippings. Just start by asking him to find you a copy of the alleged decretal. The only place I see it is in continual recycling through SDA materials.


#20

[quote=Gratias Grace]:eek: ANTI-CATHOLIC! :eek: :eek: :eek:

When you find out that you have started to be “a prisoner” of the haters of the Catholic Church, just leave them. Use your time at better “things”. It’s easy to say, but even Jesus tells us to leave the enemies of the Church:

**Jesus says: “But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11“Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you” (Luke 10:10-11). **

Hope this link may be of help to you:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=792

Best wishes and God Bless!

G.G.
[/quote]

G.G,

What a coincidence. I used to go to a Batist church untill last year (2003) - now I’m Catholic. Anyway, my wife and kids still go to activities at this Baptist church. One day last year as I was exiting the Baptist chruch I stopped outside the door and scrubed my shoes on the mat and shook off the dust from my shoes. My wife and the line behind me all stopped and waited as I did this odd thing. It was a clear and beutifull day in Utah and the carpets were clean. My wife asked me “What are you doing?” I responded loud enough for others to hear, “I’m shaking the dust off my feet as Scripture commands me to do!” My wife now waits at the door when I exit the Baptist church so she doesn’t run over me. She no longer asks what I’m doing either. She just gives me a mean look and accepts the fact that I am no longer “saved”. Thank God, now I have a Scripturally accurate “HOPE” for salvation.

I do it in all schismatic churches I exit to this day.


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