Advice for my upcoming Sola Scriptura debate
#1
In October, I'm going to be doing a Sola Scriptura in which I intend to prove, that the Holy Bible is not a catechetical book, but rather geared towards those, who already know the basics of the One True Faith. I am studying for this, I have read the FishEaters article on Sola Scriptura, I have Patrick Madrid's Where's that in the Bible,  and am currently watching a Sola Scriptura debate on Youtube, and am taking notes. Still every bit, helps, so I'm asking for your guys advice on this, any tips?
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#2
Two small suggestions, which you may already know. 1) Where in the Bible does it say that Sola Scriptura is doctrine? And 2) Who decided what books are in the Bible? Don't forget to be prepared to point out that the protestant Bible has deleted books that were removed by the Jews AFTER the Crucifixion, and that Marin Luther followed them. Christ and the Apostles would have had access only to the full Catholic Old Testament, not the abridged version used by modern 'Jews' and protestants.
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#3
First, be sure to indicate you are just a lay Catholic, and do not speak for the Church. Historically, you would have had to get your bishops permission for such an endeavor, because it is very easy for someone who is not an expert to make an error, get called on it, and then turn people off to the Church as a result. Know your arguments, plan your counter-arguments, but also know your place and make clear you are not speaking for the Church, but are addressing what should be obvious to someone without a bias. Sola Scriptura is bad Biblical theology. It is illogical. You are merely there to point that out.

Secondly, keep the debate on that subject. Force the Protestant to defend Sola Scriptura. Refuse to allow it to wander, and simply ignore any swipes at Catholic theology or doctrine. If you let them switch the subject (and they will do that), you will lose. That's precisely what Protestants love to do. They get cornered, so they lash out at Catholic doctrines, and jump from one to the other without ever allowing a proper answer.

It will probably come when you ask "Where does the bible say that it alone is the sole source of Revelation?" They will respond with 2 Tim 3.16-17 "All scripture is inspired ..." You will then point out that for St. Paul "scripture" was the Old Testament, not the New, "inspired" does not mean "exclusive", etc. They will get frustrated and reply with a non sequitur like "Oh yeah, well where's the Pope in the Bible". You will be tempted to quote Matt 16.18. Don't.

Say something like, "If you want to have a debate on the Pope, that's for another debate. I can show it to you easily, but we agreed this one is on Sola Scripture. So, back to the question, where do the Bible say that it alone is the only rule of Faith and source of Revelation?" Stick with that and don't get distracted and you will win.

Thirdly, use truthful arguments, but one's they are not expecting. For instance don't cite Trent. Show that what was accepted as inspired was in flux during the first centuries. Not only does that show that any authoritative canon was going to need an authority (like the Church) to decide, but it also undermines the whole possibility of using the Bible as a unique source of Revelation, especially if people didn't even agree on what was inspired at first. 

Another : Scripture is adequate (it contains, radically, all core Christian doctrine), but it is insufficient without a tradition or authority to provide an authentic orthodox interpretation (Cf. Acts 8.30, 34.) Precisely in the passage the Ethiopian has Scripture, but it is impossible for him to determine its authentic meaning without the tradition that links that passage of Isaias to Our Lord Jesus Christ. Likewise there are many passages in scripture which are debated and the meaning unclear, for example take Matt 5.32 and 19.9. In what does "fornication" in this passage mean, and what does "divorce" mean. Catholics argue that it means that for adultery the offended spouse can refuse bed and board (a separation), but nothing can end a marriage except death. The Orthodox think this means that a marriage can be ended by "adultery" (meaning if you want out, just get your spouse to commit adultery and you're free). Protestant ignore this and accept divorce wholesale. One of these is the correct interpretation, but which one?

Unlike other things, this is not about a trivial matter, but Christian moral life and what might send souls to Hell. It's a vitally important question and the bible alone is woefully insufficient in itself to decide (and yet the correct doctrine is contained in there -- Scripture is adequate, but insufficient in itself).

If you want an easy way to describe this adequate but insufficient distinction think about food. Your going out to buy groceries is an adequate way to supply food to your family, but it is insufficient, because someone has to cook it and then others have to eat it. Groceries are an adequate means to prevent starvation, but insufficient without cooking and eating.

Keep the arguments at this high level, refuse to be distracted, stay on Sola Scriptura and let 'em have it. You aren't trying to prove Sola Scriptura false, you are trying to blow so many holes in it that the ship starts sinking on its own. Let your interlocutor drown in his own illogic.

I repeat, if you play into his hand (and let him change the topic when the going get's tough), you will lose. If you stay on topic, point out his straying from it, and keep using logical and scriptural arguments you beat him at is own game.
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#4
Excellent advice, MM!
Jovan-Marya of the Immaculate Conception Weismiller, T.O.Carm.

Vive le Christ-roi! Vive le roi, Louis XX!
Deum timete, regem honorificate.
Kansan by birth! Albertan by choice! Jayhawk by the Grace of God!
  “Qui me amat, amet et canem meum. (Who loves me will love my dog also.)” 
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My Blog 'Musings of an Old Curmudgeon'


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#5
I'm considering having one of my arguments be, that the Bible doesn't give us instructions on how to test spirits. Protestants will argue that they have the Holy Spirit, and thus are able to interpret Sacred Scripture correctly, so I'm thinking of countering that Bible tells us to test Spirits, and yet gives us no instructions on how to do that correctly. Any advice?
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#6
(09-24-2017, 07:56 PM)MaryLover Wrote: I'm considering having one of my arguments be, that the Bible doesn't give us instructions on how to test spirits. Protestants will argue that they have the Holy Spirit, and thus are able to interpret Sacred Scripture correctly, so I'm thinking of countering that Bible tells us to test Spirits, and yet gives us no instructions on how to do that correctly. Any advice?

Don't get drawn into that.

Stick with basic logic, don't try to biblicize everything.

If Protestants have the Holy Spirit to correctly interpret, but several come up with disparate opinions on the same passage, then clearly there's an issue.

That the bible doesn't provide a test ignore the essential problem.

Stay simple.
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#7
(09-22-2017, 10:57 PM)MaryLover Wrote: In October, I'm going to be doing a Sola Scriptura in which I intend to prove, that the Holy Bible is not a catechetical book, but rather geared towards those, who already know the basics of the One True Faith. I am studying for this, I have read the FishEaters article on Sola Scriptura, I have Patrick Madrid's Where's that in the Bible,  and am currently watching a Sola Scriptura debate on Youtube, and am taking notes. Still every bit, helps, so I'm asking for your guys advice on this, any tips?

Can someone provide me with a list of objections Protestants will have to my argument, (apart from getting off topic, and attacking Tradition) namely that the Bible is not a catechetical book?

One objection I can think of is: "Sola Scriptura doesn't mean that the Bible is obvious in it's teachings. It just means that the Bible is the only infallible authority"

Can anyone provide me with any other objection(s)?
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#8
There's a ton of stuff on Youtube. Just plug in "sola scriptura debate" and you'll get plenty of hits.
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#9
I don't really post anymore, but I want to help.

These are from the King James Version, a version most protestants will readily accept.

2 Peter 1:20

"Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation."

You can also ask them what, in their opinion, is the "pillar and ground of the truth." They will likely say the Bible. You can then tell them that the Bible says the Church is the "pillar and ground of the truth."

1 Timothy 3:15

"But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."

Also, I can't recall where I read this exactly or who said it, but it's very telling. Ask the person to read this out loud:

"I never said I stole money."

If we can interpret it on our own using the sola scriptura principle, we'll all agree. You can point out the many different ways this sentence can be interpreted.

"I never said I stole money."

"I never said I stole money."

"I never said I stole money."

"I never said I stole money."

"I never said I stole money."

"I never said I stole money."

You can then point out that the many protestant sects do not agree, but they all have the same texts.

I hope this is helpful.
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#10
Well, they do not all have the same texts. The Vulgate supports Catholic doctrine, the Lutheran Study Bible supports Lutheran doctrine, the Peshitta supports Orthodox doctrine (largely), the Anglican Bible supports Anglican doctrine; and the Calvinist influenced Protestants support Baptist (anti?) doctrine. Pretty suspicious.

St. Paul says obey what we write And Speak to you. St. Peter says, if you are confused by Paul, consult me for the proper interpretation. It is to that Church which truly follows Jesus Christ that should be interpreting Scripture. This kinds' shakes Protestants up. They tend to want to interpret Jesus Christ on the "I can relate to my friend Jesus in His human side." Might be nice to point out that as Jesus suffered in the Garden of Gethsemane, Matthew shows His human suffering, Luke is curiously balanced and St. John offers us the Divine side of Jesus Christ.

One might also ask why Protestants refuse to say "Blessed Virgin Mary"when She has said that "all nations shall call me Blessed". Why do they not respect her prophecy and join those who do? Usually my experience with Baptist types is "I believe what I believe" similar to many people's assessment of art: "I know what I like". Ah me, there goes study and education, down the road of the "I wanna's"! (I want it My way!)

Just noticed the date, so this post probably only serves a purpose, maybe, for the future. Best wishes, anyways.
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