Starting a discussion with a Protestant


#1

I have agreed to a request from my girlfriend to talk to a protestant youth paster over e-mail. I have loads of questions, and apparantly this guy is well versed in history, greek translations, etc. What is the best way to start dialogue with this guy? I figure it should start with the establishment of a visible church with visible leaders, successors, etc. Thoughts?


#2

[quote=go Leafs go]I have agreed to a request from my girlfriend to talk to a protestant youth paster over e-mail. I have loads of questions, and apparantly this guy is well versed in history, greek translations, etc. What is the best way to start dialogue with this guy? I figure it should start with the establishment of a visible church with visible leaders, successors, etc. Thoughts?
[/quote]

Thoughts? Yes. You are being evangelized. Their mission is to convert your to their faith.

Do NOT get involved in a dialogue with this person unless you are WELL GROUNDED in your faith.

Is your girlfriend willing to talk to a Catholic priest in exchange for your agreement to talk to her youth pastor?

SV


#3

St. Veronica is right.

Also, be sure and thoroughly research everything he tells you. Some people take bible verses out of context to try and make it say what they want it to say. It will be easy to respond, because you Catholic faith is based on the truth.

Be sure and ask him if he knows where the Bible came from (is he Sola Scriptura?). Also, ask him how he knows what is scripture and what isn’t.

Like St. Veronica, I am curious as to whether your girlfriend has agreed to a similar arrangement?

Good luck.


#4

Friend:

From my experience, sometimes it is totally and completely fruitless to even entertain discussions with such well-trained seminarian folks, as their views are well-established and they are very closed minded. I have many “Protestant” pastors in my family, my father one of them, and I have attempted in little tidbits, but have learned sometimes it’s just not worth “upsetting the apple cart”. for whatever reason. They will probably never be open, nor care to take a look at your/my views. A shame yes, but the facts. So don’t waste your breath. I.E., after months of entertaining discussions with a long lost (non-denom relative) they just ended up saying “the RCC is nothing but lies of Satan”, etc…Geeminee----.

If anything, should you choose to begin a discussion, I would express your beliefs concerning the beautiful Matthew 16:18-20 passage, if nothing else.

Good Luck!!!


#5

I totally agree with what was said about being totally grounded in your faith. I come from a Southern Baptist background, and I know how some have spent much time learning how to “evangelize” Catholics.

Like I said, I have a background as a Protestant, preacher, teacher, and chaplin. If you have any questions or if he stumps you concerning any Greek, please feel free to email me. litteral@dragg.net

By the way, are you a Leafs fan? You all got Ron Francis this year. He is my second favorite player behind Mario Lemeiux. Just thought I would ask.


#6

[quote=go Leafs go]I have agreed to a request from my girlfriend to talk to a protestant youth paster over e-mail. I have loads of questions, and apparantly this guy is well versed in history, greek translations, etc. What is the best way to start dialogue with this guy? I figure it should start with the establishment of a visible church with visible leaders, successors, etc. Thoughts?
[/quote]

I see no reason to engage in an argument with this man. If you DO. Concentrate on issues that Protestants and Catholics have in common. There IS considerable common ground. Speak of your Love for Christ. Your love of the Gospels. Offer to offer up your Prayers for him. At this point there is no need to get into an apologetics fencing match with him. It seems your girlfriend is doing that with you and is deflecting you towards her Pastor. Speak with HER. Love HER. You are an Ambassador of Christ. Dont beat her over the head with the Catechism. Show her the Gospel lived in Love. She is not WRONG in her love of Christ nor is she wrong to love the Scriptures or to have Faith. Show her, by your example that there is MORE. Sola-Scriptura and sola-Fida are merely theological abstractions. LIVE the Gospel and by Gods Grace she will realize that there is more.


#7

[quote=go Leafs go]I have agreed to a request from my girlfriend to talk to a protestant youth paster over e-mail. I have loads of questions, and apparantly this guy is well versed in history, greek translations, etc. What is the best way to start dialogue with this guy? I figure it should start with the establishment of a visible church with visible leaders, successors, etc. Thoughts?
[/quote]

I think the best way to do this would be to agree to exchange books. I know someone doing that right now and it has been very fruitful (for the Protestant in the discussion especially) to hear it from the best apologists the Church already has to offer.

A Protestant Minister who takes the time to read Mr. Hahn, Keating, Kreeft, etc., will find himself very astounded at the Truth contained in our Church. Then you all can answer each other’s questions about the books you are reading.

That’s my 2 cents


#8

I will tell you the same thing my priest/friend told me. I told him one of my friends is Pentacostal and he gave me the impression to avoid being around him if he’s trying to teach me somthing. My priest told me that because I did not know as much as I do now in Catholism. He told me to avoid learning from him because it would confuse me. At that time I did not know why he told me this, but now I know it was to protect me. My protestant friend was not even a pastor, so beware. Pastors know their bible and can possibly convert you if you dont know the Catholic interpretations of the bible. I want to refer you to this thread and i want you to read up on it forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=909&highlight=denomination I never finished it, I made it a little past the 107th posting. Im not saying read alot of it just read the first couple posts and then you will find it adicting to read on. its very interesting and helpful. It even has proof on how their church came from Catholism. So theres no need to convert, confuse yourself or even debate with anyone. Hope to see you later on in the forums.


#9

i have always tried to turn the conversation to the eucharist…sharing how the HOLY SPIRIT enlightened me to the reality; that Jesus is present, body, blood, soul and divinity. all through my education i was taught that the old testements types would find their fulfilement in the new testament namely in Christ. now many of our brothers want to tell me it’s only a symbol or a type.“the reality is in Jesus Christ”


#10

Sorry I told my story in a confusing way, I lost my chance to edit it. Read it more then once, then I think it will be more understandable to you. Basiclly its about my priest telling me to avoid learning from my protestant friend because it can only cause confusion, debate or conversion. I hope I was of some kind of help to you.


#11

[quote=duck]i have always tried to turn the conversation to the eucharist…sharing how the HOLY SPIRIT enlightened me to the reality; that Jesus is present, body, blood, soul and divinity. all through my education i was taught that the old testements types would find their fulfilement in the new testament namely in Christ. now many of our brothers want to tell me it’s only a symbol or a type.“the reality is in Jesus Christ”

“GOD DON’T NEVER CHANGE” my southern friend said: " it don’t make me no nevermind"
[/quote]


#12

[quote=Little Mary]St. Veronica is right.

Also, be sure and thoroughly research everything he tells you. Some people take bible verses out of context to try and make it say what they want it to say. It will be easy to respond, because you Catholic faith is based on the truth.

Be sure and ask him if he knows where the Bible came from (is he Sola Scriptura?). Also, ask him how he knows what is scripture and what isn’t.

Like St. Veronica, I am curious as to whether your girlfriend has agreed to a similar arrangement?

Good luck.
[/quote]

I have established contact with a local Catholic priest for her, and she has written to him. Whether or not they continue to dialogue, I’m not sure. I’m not worried about being evagelized because I am well grounded in my catholic faith, and I’m also very resourceful. I’ve come to learn about the tactics of Protestants in general when using the bible but I have now read many apologetic books and feel confident I can handle any objections to the faith.


#13

What kind of Protestant is he? There’s much variation, and your question as to where to start may depend upon the kind of Protestantism practiced. Email is a good way to go, as it is easier to more thoughtfully research your responses.

I recommend Patrick Madrid’s book Search and Rescue: How to Bring Your Family and Friends Into, or Back Into, the Catholic Church .


#14

[quote=copland]I totally agree with what was said about being totally grounded in your faith. I come from a Southern Baptist background, and I know how some have spent much time learning how to “evangelize” Catholics.

Like I said, I have a background as a Protestant, preacher, teacher, and chaplin. If you have any questions or if he stumps you concerning any Greek, please feel free to email me. litteral@dragg.net

By the way, are you a Leafs fan? You all got Ron Francis this year. He is my second favorite player behind Mario Lemeiux. Just thought I would ask.
[/quote]

HUGE Leafs Fan, a frustrated one albeit. Thanks for the e-mail, I’ll be sure to use it


#15

This web site has a very good listing of Catholic beleifs that are found in the bible.

salvationhistory.com/library/apologetics/noncatholics.cfm

Also, if you get stuck on an issue, bring the question to this forum.
There are lots of knowledgeable people here who can help.
One of the tough areas is when evangelicals start telling you what the original greek was supposed to mean. often times, though, they aren’t accurate to how the wording was used at the time the Scripture was written.

best wishes on your debate.

PS, the single most important topic that evangelicals cannot answer to is that the bible does not proclaim itself to be the sole rule of faith and morals, and that no book can be self authenticating (remind them that the book of Mormon and the Koran are, tho, and those are false beliefs). It is an illogical proof to say that the bible is the sole rule of faith and morals because the bible says so.
If you approach the discussion from pointing out that while the bible may be inerrant, they have no way of guaranteeing that their interpretation is, and thus it would be very unthoughtful for God to give us an inspired text without an objective inspired means to properly interpret it.

No evangelical can give you an answer to this and stay within the bounds of sola scriptura. They take an impossible position to defend.


#16

Here was his first e-mail to me, so you all get a background on him. first thing id like
to do is let you know a bit about me and then we will get into the scripture
stuff next time. im sure you want to get right into it, and to be honest
with you, you present some good questions and comments about theology and
the Christian faith. well i was brought up Catholic, got baptised, first
communion, confirmation, catholic private hi school, the whole bit. As i
look back on my life, i think i always did believe in God, but he was a
foreign concept, kind of like how i believe in China but have never visited
it. At the age of about 18 i became friends with some Evangelical Christians
and over time one of my friends encouraged my to read the Bible for myself.
So, over a period of about 3 months i read the whole Bible, and God really
came alive to me for the first time, especally in the person of Jesus. Like
i said i had always believed in God but at this point I wanted more. i
wanted what Jesus had with God the Father. I began what we call a personal
relationship with God, where i confessed my sin and my need for a Savior and
Lord. That was about ten years ago, and there have been some ups and downs,
but im still here, and trusting Him for my life. When it comes to school i
went to Concordia University and got a Ba in Religious Studies and
Philosophy. After that i went to Tyndale Seminary where I got an Mdiv in
Youth and Family Ministry, and now im a Pastor at Snowdon Baptist Church, in
uptown Montreal.

I guess when it comes to matters of faith, i have wrestled with being
Catholic as i read the Bible many times, and it eventually meant that i had
many many discussion with my Priest over what i was reading in scripture. We
had many good discussions, but eventually i knew that i saw too many
problems with Catholic theology to remain there. My mom still attends that
church, and i have no bad feelings towards it, i dont consider it a cult or
anything like that, i know sme great Catholics that love God. I just knew
that fom what I read in the bible compared to what official Catholic
doctrine was, i couldnt stay there. Basically when it comes to the sola
scriptura theory, ya its something i stand by. I believe that what we read
from scripture should be the base of our theology, while having the Holy
Spirit in us is the base of our personal relationship with God. Im loking
forward to our discussions and would love to meet you sometime. i want you
to know that im really an informal person. I am not an arguer if you know
what i mean, so i dont take this as some kind of competition to see who is
smarter, and im sure you are the same way as me. Just wanted to clear that
up, because im sure there is a ton that i dont know, but im willing to chat.
Like i said, i have a living personal relationship with a living God through
Jesus Christ, as seen in scripture and through the power and wisdom of the
Holy Spirit, so please know that that is where i am coming from, not from
some denomination. i work at a baptist church, but i really consider myself
non denominational, because, as you have seen, every denomination has
something any given person will disagree with. So, thanks for the email and
i look forward to chatting with you again


#17

So I’ve started discussing Sola Scriptura as I believe that once this myth is debunked, the others should really follow suit.


#18

[quote=Dan-Man916]This web site has a very good listing of Catholic beleifs that are found in the bible.

salvationhistory.com/library/apologetics/noncatholics.cfm

Also, if you get stuck on an issue, bring the question to this forum.
There are lots of knowledgeable people here who can help.
One of the tough areas is when evangelicals start telling you what the original greek was supposed to mean. often times, though, they aren’t accurate to how the wording was used at the time the Scripture was written.

best wishes on your debate.

PS, the single most important topic that evangelicals cannot answer to is that the bible does not proclaim itself to be the sole rule of faith and morals, and that no book can be self authenticating (remind them that the book of Mormon and the Koran are, tho, and those are false beliefs). It is an illogical proof to say that the bible is the sole rule of faith and morals because the bible says so.
If you approach the discussion from pointing out that while the bible may be inerrant, they have no way of guaranteeing that their interpretation is, and thus it would be very unthoughtful for God to give us an inspired text without an objective inspired means to properly interpret it.

No evangelical can give you an answer to this and stay within the bounds of sola scriptura. They take an impossible position to defend.
[/quote]

Thanks for the good advise, and I will defintiely use this forum for help, I will stay within the bounds of Sola Scriptura. I am actually in the midst of reading Sugenis “not by scripture alone” book but I have more than enough information to debunk the doctrine of scripture alone, and if I get stuck, this is the first place I will come to.


#19

Here’s some handy bible verses germaine to sola scriptura:

Tradition vs. Sola Scriptura (Scripture Alone)

Jn 21:25 Not everything is in the Bible

2 Thess 2:15; 2 Tim 2:2; 1 Cor 11:2; 1 Thess 2:13 oral tradition as authoritative

Acts 2:42 Early Christians followed apostolic tradition

Matt 2:23; Acts 20:35; James 4:5 Specific references where Jesus speaks or is quoted as revealing truth which is not in Scripture

Matt 28:19; 20 The great commission by Christ was to preach not to write

Acts 8:30-31

Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.

Jude 9 references the aporcyphal book, Assumption of Moses v9

Jude 14-15 references 1Enoch v15

Holy Scriptures

Acts 1:16; Rom 1:2; 2Tim 3:16; 1Pet 1:10; 2 Pet 1:21 Scriptures inspired by God

1Thess 2:13; Heb 4 12 Called the Word of God

**Ps 149:6; Heb 4:12; Rev 1:16 **Called a two-edged sword

2Pet 3:16 Some things hard to understand

Acts 8:30-31; 2Pet 3:16 Have need of an interpreter

2 Pet 1:20-21 No prophecy of Scripture subject to private interpretation


#20

Tradition (Paradosis in greek, meaning handing on)

2Th 2:15 stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.

2Th3:6 tradition you received from us

1Cor 11:2 Hold to traditions


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