Need Help Debating a Fundamentalist

Hello,

Last night I was invited to a friend’s home for dinner. Her father was there as well. I’d met this man briefly in the past, but had never had an in-depth conversation with him before last night.

During the course of the evening, he asked both me and another friend who was there what religion we were. When we responded individually by saying that we were converting to the Catholic faith, he became argumentative. He shared his salvation experience with us, then proceeded to tell us that the Bible states that there is only one mediator between God and man, that mediator being Jesus. He made it very clear that he had no use for praying to Mary or to the Saints. He also told us that in order to be saved, you must ask Jesus into your heart by praying the sinner’s prayer. He asserted that if you don’t do that, you’re not saved. He also began to discuss Revelation. He explained how the Temple in Jerusalem would be rebuilt, sacrifices reinstituted, and this would help usher in the reign of the Antichrist. (He’s a big Left Behind fan.) I restrained myself and didn’t say much, partly because I didn’t feel well-equipped. (I hate that feeling.) I’m not an expert on the Catholic faith. Can someone recommend some resources I can study so I can respond to him next time? Any help anyone can give would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Next time you talk with him on these matters-

  1. Tell him that you love him the same way you love Jesus.

2.Then I would rebuke and bind the oppressive religious spirits that are surrounding him and any that might be surrounding you.

3.Then pray together to God through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

4,Then sit down with him and you both read the teachings of Jesus Christ in the 4 Gospels and also Acts.

This should do it. If he seem irritable, try again from #1 and repeat the steps.

The kingdom of heaven is at hand, come on now lets stop playing games and lets start saving in Jesus’s name!

[quote=Jew_Man_73]Can someone recommend some resources I can study so I can respond to him next time? Any help anyone can give would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
[/quote]

You’ve got a lot of studying to do, but this situation should serve as a catalyst for you to grow in understanding your faith more.

I recommend “Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma” by Ludwig Ott
ISBN 0-89555-009-1

It contains a systematic compilation of dogmas and doctrines, as well as their scriptural and traditional bases.

hurst

[quote=1Christ1Church]Next time you talk with him on these matters-

  1. Tell him that you love him the same way you love Jesus. 2.Then I would rebuke and bind the oppressive religious spirits that are surrounding him and any that might be surrounding you. 3.Then pray together to God through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
    4,Then sit down with him and you both read the teachings of Jesus Christ in the 4 Gospels and also Acts.

This should do it. If he seem irritable, try again from #1 and repeat the steps.

The kingdom of heaven is at hand, come on now lets stop playing games and lets start saving in Jesus’s name!
[/quote]

Remember, if we love Jesus, we will keep His commandments.

And by the wway, I don’t know about you, but I am entirely incapable of saving anybody.

You speak the truth brother, either do I. But in Jesus’s name, he saves through us.

[quote=1Christ1Church]You speak the truth brother, either do I. But in Jesus’s name, he saves through us.
[/quote]

:thumbsup:

As to his point about one mediator, ask him if he prays for his friends and family. If he does then ask if he is acting as a mediator? There i s no difference between asking your family to pry for you and to have Saints to pray for you. We are all brothers and sisters in Christ.

Praying to the Saints

He explained how the Temple in Jerusalem would be rebuilt, sacrifices reinstituted, and this would help usher in the reign of the Antichrist.

This one always cracks me up. I have yet to get an satisfying answer from a fundy (other than being embarrassed by the prospect).

“So let me get this straight you are rebuilding the temple for the anti-christ yet claim to be worshipping God?” :eek:

Dispy’s pump money into Isreal in order to have the temple rebuilt and have actually bought some of the junk for it.

Yet they have a problem with Mary? It’s always interesting to me that the rest of christianity builds houses of worphip to God, yet they build one for the antichrist. Who would build a house of worship for the antichrist unless one actually worshipped him? If the eye is focused on the antichrist it isn’t focused on God.

Peace and God Bless
Nicene

Hi Jew_Man_73!

Sounds like you really had an enjoyable evening. :rolleyes:
I can suggest quite a few good resources for you my friend.
Since you’re dealing with someone who’s all into the “Left Behind” series,
( :rotfl: I’m sorry but every time I see or hear that title lately I get a mental image of something rude. :o ) I suggest you check out this LINK on that series.

I also suggest that you print out God’s Love For You and give it to them after reading it carefully. These articles on the last things will also help you greatly.

The praying to the saints link above is a good one too.

Are Catholics Born Again? and Assurance of Salvation

These articles on Anti-Catholicisim will give you sort of a primer on the sort of stuff that you ran into.

One of THE very best sources that I’ve discovered and use constantly is The San Juan Catholic Seminars Apologetics Series and there is no better bargain for such a great resource. They also have a brand new booklet out on the end times that I’m gonna have to get!

Finally, if you would like to get into an OUTSTANDING study of the Catholic faith, I highly recommend the Catholic Home Study Service which offers at least 7 FREE courses that will inform and encourage you in the faith. I have completed them all and they were greatly instrumental in my return to the faith. I usually recommend that people begin with “We Believe…” but they’re ALL good.

Feel free to PM me if you run into anything too bizarre. I’ve probably seen and heard it all. :thumbsup:
Pax tecum,

You may mention that as a Catholic you received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. Moreover, you receive Jesus Christ - His body, blood,.sould and divinity every time your receive Communion. I would suggest to select one topic at the time and explain to him what the Catholic Church believes.

I would recommend this, from a little bit of experience.

When I was anti-Catholic, folks used to try to argue the entire reformation all over again with me. This never worked, because each point was dilluted. It also didn’t work because of the fact that doctrines like faith alone and the symbolic presence of Christ were just too important for me to seriously consider any arguements about. What got to me was when I was introduced to a very minor, relatively inconsequential idea that was not only less important, but also much smaller in scope. Once I saw that the Catholics were right on that point, it made me a LOT more interested to pay attention to evidence for other points.

That one minor thing for me was the practice of calling priests father. What really got me was something very, very simple. Someone showed me all the places in the Bible where it shows that the Apostles were called spiritual fathers:

[quote=Me on a website of mine]The Apostles were called Father all the time, and they called those in the congregations (like Ephesus, Galatia, Corinth, etc.) they had started child, son, and daughter. You can see this just by opening up your Bible:

§ 2 Timothy 1:2 - “To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord” (Paul as Father)

§ 2 Timothy 2:1 - “You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus” (Paul as Father)

§ Philemon 10 - “I appeal to you for my child, Onesimus, whose father I have become in my imprisonment” (Paul as Father)

§ 1 Peter 5:13 - “She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark” (Peter as Father)

§ 3 John 4 - “No greater joy can I have than this, to hear that my children follow the truth” (John as Father)

§ Also 1 Corinthians 4:17, 1 Timothy 1:2, 1 Timothy 1:18, Phillipians 2:22, Titus 1:4, 2 Corinthians 12:14, Galatians 4:19, 1 John 2:1, 1 John 2:13-14.

§ And Especially 1 Corinthians 4:14-15 - “I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel” (Paul as Father)

 Jesus’ statement not to call anyone Father is hyperbole, the same as his statement to pluck out our eyes if they cause us to sin.  He’s just making a point.  If he really meant not to call anyone a biological father (like our dads) or a spiritual father (like our priests), then Paul, Peter, and John would not have done so.  

[/quote]

It was very simple, very quick, and very straightforward. What’s more, it really hit home because I had always believed that, “well, you can argue with me on the real presence, or on this or that, but the instruction to call no man father is SOO straightforward and solid that the Catholics just can’t defend it in a million years.” Nevertheless, seeing those few scripture verses made me realize that the Apostles were known as fathers, so not only did it show me that the Church was right on this point, but it showed me that I had to take an entirely different approach to interpreting Scripture. It made me realize that the method of taking verses as literal instructions direct to me just didn’t work.

So I’d recommend studying up on this topic and approaching him with this, nothing else. Try to get him to see this, then wih any luck he’ll be curious for more.

[quote=MarySon]You may mention that as a Catholic you received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. Moreover, you receive Jesus Christ - His body, blood,.sould and divinity every time your receive Communion.
[/quote]

Yes, and to expand a little bit, Christ redeemed the material component of humanity as well as the spiritual component. He took on our material nature as well as our spiritual nature. Thus, asking Jesus into your heart is only going half-way. It is asking the spiritual component of Jesus into our spiritual component. But in the Eucharist we not only receive the spiritual component of Jesus into our spiritual component, but we also receive the material component of Jesus into our material component. It’s all so…darned…logical! :slight_smile:

J,

Order the book Catholicism and Fundamentalism by our own Karl Keating. Here are some great apologetics websites:

scripturecatholic.com
catholic.com (listen to Catholic Answers Live or read the tracts)
ewtn.com
amm.org/chss.htm (Catholic Home Study Service operated by Father Oscar Lukefahr)
catholicity.com/maryfoundation/ Free apologetics CDs.

Feel free to PM me if you need a list of more books.

God bless brother,

hmmm…
Well - one thing that really helped me out of Protestantism, was ‘Hail Holy Queen’ by Scott Hahn, since for me the largest obstacle to Catholicism was Mary. Most of the rest of my difficulties were answered here on the forums, as well as by google searches for whatever topic was questionable for me.

Here are a few of my saved pages (Very few - lol)

Grace - what it is and what it does

Intro to the Catholic Church for Evangelicals…and others
Scripture Catholic
I have many more…if you need some PM me…be glad to help.

Peace

John

where is the “sinner’s prayer” in the bible?

Lumen Verum Apologetics
A 30-Part Course in Defence of the Catholic Faith
by Robert M. Haddad
theworkofgod.org/Library/Apologtc/R_Haddad/Course/Contents.htm

I think you’ve been getting some good advice. Do you expect to talk with him again some time soon? I hope so, as it sounds like a great opportunity to challenge both your knowledge and his understanding of the Church.

I would strongly recommend that you read the book “Catholicism and Fundamentalism” by Karl Keating. I read it a few years ago and found it covered these issues quite nicely.

There are also a couple of other books out there that I haven’t yet gotten but which I’m interested in eventually getting. One is “Radio Replies” or something like that, which is a compilation of an answers to questions put together by Tim Staples. You can find some excerpts at Ghttp://www.newadvent.org/library/almanac_rumble.htm.

Another resource I don’t have, but would like to get are a series of answers a sidewalk apologist back in the early 20th century compiled. Unfortunately, I no longer remember his name or the name of his book(s). (anyone out there know what I’m referring to?)

Do you have the Catholic Answers Bible yet? If not, know that they’ve got a new addition, called the New Catholic Answers Bible, that in addition to having a complete Catholic Bible, has pages that answer the common questions you may encounter with non-Catholic Christians who don’t understand how Catholics come to their understanding of the Faith Christ gave us.

For me, when I’ve had this kind of encounter I’ve prayed to the Holy Spirit for guidance. It’s often a good idea to ask the other person if we can start by agreeing that we love God and choose to do His will. Once we agree that this is our common motivation in life, I then ask if we can begin our discussion with an agreement that we seek to serve God and that we desire that our discussions lead us to the truth as given by God through Christ Jesus and that we are willing to follow this truth, regardless of where it might lead. And finally I ask that we begin further discussion with a prayer asking God for guidance so that we might remember at all times that He is our goal, not winning of any discussion but rather seeking His will.

Then, try to limit the scope of the discussion to one item at a time. If he tries to change the subject, try to keep it on one item at a time. If you are finally backed into a corner for which you have no answer, relax. You know that you have the Church covering your back. Therefore, while you may not know how to defend the Truth, you know that the defense exists and you can come here to find it. Simply tell him you’ll get the answer and get back to him. But then, do get back to him. This provides you with an excellent opportunity to better know Catholicism and to help him learn that there is more to being Christian than Fundamentalism provides.

This reminds me, there are a bunch of excellent tapes available on Catholic Apologetics put together by John Matinoni, available for FREE from www.biblechristiansociety.com.

Heck, the return to sacrifice is what we already have in the Catholic Church. The Church is the new Jerusalem.

I wish you all the best as you talk further with him or others regarding your path into Catholicism.

God Bless

Semper Fi,

Thanks for your references. I’ve just order a bunch of tapes from the Mary Foundation and followed their reference to 3 free Catholic fiction books which I’ve also ordered. And I’ve gone ahead and signed up for the free study course, which they will be sending to me via the Internet.

I look forward to going through these resources.

Thanks and God Bless,

CARose

So…all I have to do is pray a prayer that isn’t in the bible?
Sounds like a man-made ritual to me :rolleyes:

Where does it say in the bible that that is how we are all saved :confused:

[quote=CARose]Semper Fi,

Thanks for your references. I’ve just order a bunch of tapes from the Mary Foundation and followed their reference to 3 free Catholic fiction books which I’ve also ordered. And I’ve gone ahead and signed up for the free study course, which they will be sending to me via the Internet.

I look forward to going through these resources.

Thanks and God Bless,

CARose
[/quote]

No problem, Fr Lukefahr is awesome. If you can, donate some money to the CHSS because it costs them about $20 per set to mail out.

God bless!

[quote=hurst]You’ve got a lot of studying to do, but this situation should serve as a catalyst for you to grow in understanding your faith more.

I recommend “Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma” by Ludwig Ott
ISBN 0-89555-009-1

It contains a systematic compilation of dogmas and doctrines, as well as their scriptural and traditional bases.

hurst
[/quote]

Yes, I agree. I do have alot of studying to do. I’m hoping this helps me learn my faith better as well as helps him to see the truth of the Catholic faith Thanks for the book suggestion.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.