The Instigator
ndedo
Pro (for)
Winning
8 Points
The Contender
logicaldebater
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Roman Catholicism is true Christianity

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
ndedo
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/7/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,052 times Debate No: 41869
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (2)

 

ndedo

Pro

In a comment made on another religious debate, my opponent made the assertion that Roman Catholicism is "not true Christianity." If he accepts my challenge, I'll argue otherwise. This debate will not be about whether Catholicism is the true Christianity, nor about whether or not Catholicism is true. The debate will center around whether it is true to the qualities that make a religion "Christian."

First round will be for acceptance and stating position only, and the rest of the debate will follow with arguments in round 2, rebuttals in round 3, and counter-rebuttals with conclusions in round 4.

logicaldebater

Con

I will be taking the position against the assertion that Roman Catholicism is true Christianity, arguing that Roman Catholicism is not true Christianity because it is not based on biblical truths.
Debate Round No. 1
ndedo

Pro

Merriam-Webster defines Christianity as "the religion derived from Jesus Christ, based on the Bible as sacred scripture, and professed by Eastern, Roman Catholic, and Protestant bodies." According to this definition from a reputable source, my premise is correct. Religionfacts.com states that the common theme among Christian denominations is that "they agree on such fundamentals as the Bible, the Trinity, and the teachings of the Nicene Creed." It then goes on to list the different branches that agree on these fundamentals, the first of which is Roman Catholicism.

I argue that Catholicism does follow the teachings common among all true Christian denominations: the Bible, the Trinity, and the Nicene Creed. Therefore, it is truly Christian.

As my opponent's position implies that there are specific areas in which he believes the Catholic church is not truly Christian, I will allow him to present them so that I can address them in my rebuttals. This will be much easier than for me to list all the ways that Catholicism does adhere to the Bible and the Nicene Creed.


http://www.merriam-webster.com...
http://www.religionfacts.com...
logicaldebater

Con

Roman Catholicism vs. Christianity

According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Christianity is a “major religion, stemming from the life, teachings, and death of Jesus of Nazareth (the Christ, or the Anointed One of God) in the 1st century AD.”(1) Because the life, teachings, and death of Jesus are recorded in the New Testament, the Bible is the ultimate authority on Christianity, and any denomination that claims to be Christian must acknowledge this fact. Roman Catholicism does not. Paragraph 82 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “. . . the Church ‘does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence.’”(2) Claiming that Scripture and tradition must be “honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence” brings God’s infallible word down to the fallible traditions of fallible men. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work”(2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Purgatory

One Catholic teaching is that of Purgatory, the so-called “final purification” of God’s elect. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven.”(3) Complete holiness is necessary to enter heaven, but this holiness must be achieved during life, not after death. So, if a person wishes to enter heaven, they must live a perfect life, never breaking a single commandment. Because this is impossible for a human being to do, God sent his son, Jesus Christ, to live a perfect life and die for our sins, so that we could enter heaven. Once a person has accepted Christ, they are cleansed by his blood and are justified by God. They are then sanctified in their lifetime, becoming more Christlike, though they still are fallible human beings, and, after death, are glorified by God, becoming sinless not by their own works, but by the grace of God.

Also, in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, so-called “good works” are commended: “The Church also commends almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead.”(4)

These are seen by the Catholic Church as “good works” even though it is impossible to merit salvation for oneself or another. Romans 3:12 clearly states that there “is none who does good, no, not one.” And, since the Bible is the infallible Word of God, this verse is correct and the Catholic Church is wrong. “Almsgiving, indulgences, and penance” are not seen as “good” by God, rather they are seen as attempts to “bribe” the Judge of the universe into granting them or someone else eternal life. Acts 8:20, “But Peter said to him, ‘Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money!’” Buying indulgences cannot merit someone eternal life, for eternal life is a free gift of God, received by accepting his Son, Jesus. “None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him -- for the redemption of the soul is costly . . .”(Psalm 49:7, 8).

Salvation cannot be obtained through works that any man can boast (Ephesians 2:9), but by the grace of God through faith (Ephesians 2:8). “[F]or all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”(Romans 3:23) If all have committed crimes against God, how can someone be saved? Only by the works of Jesus Christ, and not by anything we can do. You must put your faith in Jesus Christ, trusting that he died upon the cross for your sins, then you can be redeemed. An example of this is found in Luke 23, when the thief on the cross next to Jesus says to him, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom”(Luke 23:42). In this verse, the thief acknowledges that Jesus is Lord, and therefore Jesus is capable of saving him. “And Jesus said to him, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.’”(Luke 23:43). The thief, though having no time to confess his sins to a priest, become baptized, or do anything “good”, was, nonetheless, promised salvation, not because of his works, but because of his faith. If he had been judged by the Ten Commandments (found in Exodus 20), the thief would have been found guilty for his sins. But, because he put his faith in Jesus Christ, believing Jesus could and would save him, the thief was saved by the grace of God.

(1)“Christianity,” Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc., accessed December 8, 2013, http://www.britannica.com...
(2)“Catechism of the Catholic Church,” Vatican, accessed December 8, 2013, http://www.vatican.va...
(3)Ibid.,http://www.vatican.va...
(4)Ibid.
Debate Round No. 2
ndedo

Pro

My opponent has attempted to show that the Catholic Church is not truly Christian based of the arguments routinely put forth by Protestants. These arguments are easily refutable and are by their very nature weak and self defeating. They put forth the absolute authority of the Scriptures, which themselves refute the arguments. The ones that are on the table for the debate are: the validity of Sacred Tradition; the existence of purgatory; and the necessity of good works to enter Heaven. This will be a lengthy response, but it is necessary to fully explain the side of the Church on these issues.


Rebuttals

Validity of Sacred Tradition:

"Because the life, teachings, and death of Jesus are recorded in the New Testament, the Bible is the ultimate authority on Christianity, and any denomination that claims to be Christian must acknowledge this fact."
The Bible is not the single, original authority on Christianity. To assume this neglects the fact that the books of the Bible were compiled and canonized by the Church itself, which received its authority from Jesus himself. The Church determined which books were divinely inspired and worthy of the canon of Sacred Scripture; thus, they have authority over them. It is fallacious circular reasoning to say that the books that appear in the Bible canon are divinely inspired because they are in the Bible. They require an outside entity to affirm their validity; the Church is the only entity with authority bestowed on it by Christ himself: "He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me" (Luke 10:16).

My opponent seems to imply that Sacred Tradition in general is invalid based on the supposed omission of its mention in Scripture. However, there are in fact numerous places that Sacred Tradition is supported by the Bible, most notably by Paul. He explicitly affirms the authority of Sacred Tradition taught by the Church: "So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught, whether by word of mouth or by letter from us" (2 Thess. 2:15). This passage dually supports the credibility of both apostolic tradition and scripture.

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work”(2 Timothy 3:16-17).
The argument put forth by John Henry Newman in 1884 thoroughly refutes the idea of this passage supporting the Protestant idea of sola scripture (scripture alone):
"It is quite evident that this passage furnishes no argument whatever that the sacred Scripture, without Tradition, is the sole rule of faith; for, although sacred Scripture is profitable for these four ends, still it is not said to be sufficient."
Also, when read out of context (as Protestants often do with this passage), one fails to see that it is a statement being made in addition to this, which comes right before it: "But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus" (2 Tim. 3:14–15).
The words "from whom you have learned it" clearly are another affirmation of apostolic tradition by Paul himself. This is in addition to the "sacred writings" of scripture.

"Claiming that Scripture and tradition must be “honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence” brings God’s infallible word down to the fallible traditions of fallible men."
Human tradition is commonly with Sacred tradition, which is was given to the Apostles by Christ has been orally passed down and protected by the Church. Human tradition includes customs and rituals which may change with the passage of time. Christ condemns human traditions that contradict the teachings of Christ here: "And why do you transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?" (Matt. 15:3). This statement does not refer to the truth contained in Sacred Tradition, which does not erroneously contradict the commandment of God.


Existence of Purgatory:

"Complete holiness is necessary to enter heaven, but this holiness must be achieved during life, not after death."
Paul clearly states that when a righteous man dies in the friendship of God but fails the test of perfection, he must be sanctified through his own loss after death. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire" (1 Cor 3:15). Whether this proves the existence of purgatory or not based on the scripture or not (as I believe it does), it suggests the existence of such a place. It is open to interpretation, but by no means do the Catholic teachings of purgatory exist independently of scripture, and they certainly do not contradict it.

Protestant bibles exclude seven Old Testament books because Martin Luther used only the books of the bible for which a Hebrew or Aramaic manuscript could be found. If Protestant theology places the ultimate authority on the bible, then why should Martin Luther, a man, be allowed to contest their validity? It seems by excluding certain books of the bible, he challenges the authority of scripture that has already been determined to be divinely inspired. This contradicts the premise that Protestant theology is based solely on scripture.

One of the books excluded is Maccabbees 2, which affirms the existence of some form of purgatory: a place where the dead can and should be prayed for:
"In doing this he acted in a very excellent and noble way, inasmuch as he had the resurrection of the dead in view; for if he were not expecting the dead to rise again, it would have been useless and foolish to pray for them in death. But if he did this with a view to the splendid reward that awaits those who had gone to rest in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be freed from this sin" (2 Macc. 12:43–45).
Why would they be praying for the dead if the only two places they could be are heaven and hell? The fates of souls in Heaven have already been determined, and those in Hell cannot be saved. This passage also refutes the idea that the Church invented purgatory. People not long before the birth of Christ already held it to be a sacred truth.


Necessity of good works

"These are seen by the Catholic Church as “good works” even though it is impossible to merit salvation for oneself or another."
The protestant argument against the necessity of good works is inherently weak. I will reference two biblical passages that clearly invalidate them.

1. James 2:14-26
"What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him?If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food,and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that?Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar?You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected; and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of God.You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone.

2. Matthew 25:34-46 (no more characters)
http://goo.gl...


Sources
Scripture and Tradition: http://goo.gl...
Purgatory: http://goo.gl...
Martin Luther: http://goo.gl...

logicaldebater

Con

"The Bible is not the single, original authority on Christianity. To assume this neglects the fact that the books of the Bible were compiled and canonized by the Church itself, which received its authority from Jesus himself."

Before I refute your argument, let's make sure we have an understanding of what "the Church" is. It's not a church, in the sense that it's a building. The Church is the body of Christ, and, therefore, consists of all true believers, not only people who belong to a certain denomination. "For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free and have all been made to drink into one Spirit"(1 Corinthians 12:12-13).

Now, you said "the books of the Bible were compiled and canonized by the Church itself," when, in reality, the books of the New Testament were compiled by Athanasius, whose list of the 27 books were confirmed by the Council of Carthage in 397 based on two criteria: "apostolic origin and the use of the writing in the churches"(1). The first criteria, obviously, meant that whoever wrote the book had to have been an apostle of Christ. "Although Paul had not walked with Christ, he had met Him on the road to Damascus, and his widely spread missionary activity -- testified by the Book of Acts -- made him the very model of an apostle"(Ibid.). The second criteria meant that whatever churches used the book would, if it were the inspired word of God, experience spiritual edification from using it.

Now, because in your statement you said "the books of the Bible were compiled and canonized by the Church," you are referring to the entire Bible, including the Old Testament. The Catholic Church used the Hebrew canon of the Old Testament, but they added the Apocrypha, which was not in the original canon made by the Jews because the Apocrypha was a fictitious writing, not the inspired word of God like the rest of the Bible.

"My opponent seems to imply that Sacred Tradition in general is invalid based on the supposed omission of its mention in Scripture. However, there are in fact numerous places that Sacred Tradition is supported by the Bible, most notably by Paul. He explicitly affirms the authority of Sacred Tradition taught by the Church: "So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to thetraditionswhich you were taught, whether bywordof mouthor byletterfrom us" (2 Thess. 2:15). This passage dually supports the credibility of both apostolic tradition and scripture."

The so-called "Sacred Tradition" is not invalid because of its failure to mention Scripture, but because of its incompatibility with Scripture. The verse you used (2 Thess. 2:15) is explained by this article:

"In the New American Bible and the KJV the verse begins with 'therefore.' In the NASB it says 'so then.' This means that we must look at the preceding context to see what Paul was talking about. If we do this, we clearly see that Paul is telling the Thessalonians to stand firm in what they had been taught about the second coming of Christ, since that is the context. It is not about Sacred Tradition. Let's take a look.

"In 2 Thess. 2:1-3 Paul says, 'Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.' Obviously, Paul is speaking about the return of Christ. He continues and warns the Thessalonians not to be deceived because the return of Christ won't hapen until after the apostacy (v. 3). Paul had already instructed them about this in v. 5. He then speaks of the Man of Lawlessness in vv 6-10 and the coming delusion (vv. 11-12). Then Paul says that God has chosen them for salvation (v. 13) and called them through the gospel (v. 14). It is after this that Paul then tells the Thessalonians to stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught. He is telling the Thessalonians to stand firm in the teaching of the return of Christ"(2).

"Human tradition includes customs and rituals which may change with the passage of time. Christ condemns human traditions that contradict the teachings of Christ here: 'And why do you transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?' (Matt. 15:3). This statement does not refer to the truth contained in Sacred Tradition, which does not erroneously contradict the commandment of God."

First of all, as I have previously proven, there is no "Sacred Tradition" that Scripture tells of. Human traditions and "Sacred Traditions," created by the Roman Catholic Church, are both the same, as there is no mention of any "Sacred Traditions" in Scripture. Second, the traditions of the Roman Catholic Church do, in fact, contradict Scripture. For example, the Catholic Ten Commandments are not the Ten Commandments found in the Bible! The second commandment (stating that you shall have no other gods before the one true God) is completely omitted, and the tenth commandment is just broken into two commandments(1). This is, honestly, because in Roman Catholicism the Virgin Mary (who did not remain a virgin after the birth of Christ) is placed higher than Jesus, who is God. That is in complete contradiction with Scripture.

"It is open to interpretation, but by no means do the Catholic teachings of purgatory exist independently of scripture, and they certainly do not contradict it."

It certainly does contradict it. "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment"(Hebrews 9:27). There is no reference in Scripture that supports the claim that after death there is any second chance, purification, or anything else of the sort.

"Protestant bibles exclude seven Old Testament books because Martin Luther used only the books of the bible for which a Hebrew or Aramaic manuscript could be found."

The reason Protestant Bibles exclude the Apocrypha is not strictly because Martin Luther excluded it, but because the Jewish people excluded it from their canon because they were either fictitious writings or reinterpretations of historical writings.

On James 2:14-26, the author is not saying that you are saved by good works. Rather, good works are an illustration of a person's salvation. If a person is saved, by the grace of God and not by anything he can do, he will wish to do "good" things in order to illustrate the fact that he has been saved. In Romans 12, Paul commands Christians to act like Christians, writing, "Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men"(Romans 12:17). Because Paul is talking to Christians, it's apparent that so-called "good works" are only necessary after a person has been saved, because "good works" cannot save anyone, rather they prove that a person has been saved because he demonstrates his faith with his works.

(1) A. Kenneth Curtis, J. Stephen Lang, and Randy Petersen, The 100 Most Important Events in Christian History, p. 37.
(2) http://carm.org...
(3)http://www.vatican.va...
Debate Round No. 3
ndedo

Pro

I will take the opportunity now to remind my opponent, as well as the voters, that the overall point of contention is not whether the Catholics or the Protestants are more correct - see the rules of the debate in round 1. That conflict hasn't been definitively resolved for the past 500 years, and this debate has become, to a certain extent, a recitation of traditional Catholic vs Protestant arguments. The point of contention is whether Catholicism fits the criteria of a true Christian denomination. These criteria are outlined in the second round with definitions from both myself and my opponent. I am going to respond to his rebuttals for the purpose of proving that Catholicism fits those criteria.

Counter-rebuttals

The definition of the "Church" given by my opponent is correct; I recognize that. Throughout my arguments, I referred to the Catholic Magisterium by calling it the Church because to many non-Christians, "Catholic Church" more refers to the authoritative body instead of the communion of believers.

"... when, in reality, the books of the New Testament were compiled by Athanasius."
Athanasius was a bishop and thus part of the Church, especially under the aforementioned definition of Church. Also, the Church leaders at Carthage did approve and officially canonize his list of books, with some exclusions, thus making my statement correct. They combined them with the Old Testament canon, including the Apocrypha, so it is correct to say that they compiled the canon.

"The Catholic Church used the Hebrew canon of the Old Testament, but they added the Apocrypha, which was not in the original canon made by the Jews because the Apocrypha was a fictitious writing, not the inspired word of God like the rest of the Bible."
"The reason Protestant Bibles exclude the Apocrypha is not strictly because Martin Luther excluded it, but because the Jewish people excluded it from their canon because they were either fictitious writings or reinterpretations of historical writings."
The reason that the Apocrypha was excluded by the Jews was because they could find no Hebrew manuscripts and so believed that they were fictitious. The Dead Sea Scrolls found in the past century included Hebrew manuscripts for several of these books, which renders such reasoning invalid (1). The Council of Carthage included them because they believed them to be divinely inspired. Why should the Jewish leaders who rejected the very Incarnation of Christ be considered a higher authority on this than Christians? Martin Luther simply used their canon as justification to exclude books that contradicted his teachings.

"...we clearly see that Paul is telling the Thessalonians to stand firm in what they had been taught about the second coming of Christ, since that is the context."
The rebuttal to 2 Thess. 2:15 fails to recognize that by Paul telling them to rely on oral and written traditions validates both as a reputable source. Just because Paul was talking about the return of Christ doesn't change the implication that they are both reliable and so are valid elsewhere.

"... as I have previously proven, there is no "Sacred Tradition" that Scripture tells of."
My opponent has not, as he claims, proven that there is no Sacred Tradition. While the bible does not specifically include the two words, it is invalid to say that this disproves it. It does, however, suggest it, and can be interpreted either way. I will remind everyone that such is the case with the Trinity; the word is not found in the bible (http://goo.gl...), yet it is suggested and believed.

"Human traditions and "Sacred Traditions," created by the Roman Catholic Church, are both the same..."
This is false. Furthermore, there is a huge difference between human and sacred traditions; this is explained in one of the original sources I used:
Human traditions are "transitory customs or practices which may change, as circumstances warrant, such as styles of priestly dress, particular forms of devotion to saints, or even liturgical rubrics. Sacred or apostolic tradition consists of the teachings that the apostles passed on orally through their preaching." (2)

"...the Catholic Ten Commandments are not the Ten Commandments found in the Bible! The second commandment (stating that you shall have no other gods before the one true God) is completely omitted, and the tenth commandment is just broken into two commandments. This is, honestly, because in Roman Catholicism the Virgin Mary... is placed higher than Jesus..."
This entire quotation is a set of erroneous statements made by someone who clearly displays a limited knowledge of Catholic teaching. First, the commandments taught by the Catholic Church are the same ones as Protestants, just grouped differently. The bible does not break them up into a list of ten, so the lines are drawn as interpreters see fit. The second Protestant commandment is grouped with the first, not omitted. This is similar to how Protestants group the final two into one. Finally, the Catholic Church does not hold the Virgin Mary to be higher than Christ. She was made pure by God to be the mother of Christ, and so she is honored, not worshiped. Her continued virginity is interpretable and is not explicitly confirmed or refuted by Scripture

"There is no reference in Scripture that supports the claim that after death there is any second chance, purification, or anything else of the sort."
Hebrews 9:27 does not, as stated, contradict the idea of purgatory. Simply saying that there is judgment after death does not exclude the possibility of final purification through fire for the righteous, who are imperfect. As I have stated, 1 Cor 3:15 does strongly suggest this, so it can be interpreted as such.

"On James 2:14-26, the author is not saying that you are saved by good works. Rather, good works are an illustration of a person's salvation."
This is in direct contradiction with the text, which explicitly states: "You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone." In addition to this, the passage restates this idea numerous times in different ways to the point of redundancy. Now, whether Protestants choose to accept this or not, it is is further erroneous to ignore the point that good works are necessary, whether they are a result of salvation or the cause of it.
The second passage I quoted was the parable of the goats and the sheep. Jesus announces the salvation of those on his right, saying "For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; [etc.]." He then announces the damnation of those on the left, saying "...for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; [etc.]." This clearly shows that Jesus considered good works to be necessary for salvation.

Conclusion

Based on the Encyclopedia Britannica definition, Christian teaching stems from the life of Christ. Under the Merriam-Webster definition, the teachings must be based on and derived from the teachings of Christ. These two are in agreement. Furthermore, there must be belief in the Trinity, the Nicene Creed, and the bible. None of the definitions require absolute conformity or limiting to what is in Scripture. Different interpretations of the bible can be made, but Roman Catholicism cannot be excluded under any of the three definitions. I have shown through my arguments that Catholicism does not contradict scripture in any of the ways presented by my opponent by thoroughly refuting each and every one of his arguments. I will remind all that any further arguments my opponent might give in this round are invalid as I will not have the opportunity to refute them. He may only give counter rebuttals and a conclusion.

My thanks go to my opponent for a solid debate; this is the best I've participated in so far.

Sources
1. http://goo.gl...
2. http://goo.gl...
3. http://goo.gl...
logicaldebater

Con

logicaldebater forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Sagey 3 years ago
Sagey
True Punk, Jesus/jeshua or whoever, did not instigate, nor condone any hierarchical body for his followers.
Catholicism was started as a political movement and the Bible was tied into this political hierarchy by Constantine at Nicaea. There the Catholic bible was formed, which is different from the teachings of Jesus and relies more heavily on the teachings of Saul/Paul.
Catholicism and indeed the entire body of knowledge often referred to as Christendom, should really be called Sauldom.
Which is funny, because Saul/Paul only ever heard about Jesus second hand from anecdotes, yet he became the most powerful prophet and promoter of Jesus of them all, yet he never met nor heard Jesus speak.
This alone makes a joke of Christendom.
What existed before Christendom or Catholicism, was the original Christianity.
What transpired from Constantine rearranging the books of the bible to suit his hierarchical, political agenda, is not Christianity. He turned religion (Christianity) into a business model, rather than a personal worship model. So the hierarchical structure is more for deriving a profit and power from Christianity, more than actual worship of Jesus.
Posted by ndedo 3 years ago
ndedo
Personally, I believe that having a denomination is necessary so that you have a defined ideology to stick to. Without any authority to hold yourself accountable to, it's much easier to rationalize and make the rules for yourself. Since I'm a Catholic, I naturally believe Catholicism to be the best denomination, but I think that most established Protestant denominations are sufficient. I heard once that Christianity is like a house, and denominations are rooms in the house. The various denominations can coexist, but it is important to pick one to identify with and to subscribe to the beliefs of. I don't see the point about arguing over which denomination is better; they all are based on the same basic truths, only with differences on the details. However, I think that Mormonism is a false Christianity as there are vast differences, including the belief in the existence of multiple gods.
Posted by ChristianPunk 3 years ago
ChristianPunk
The idea of true Christianity is that of a fallacy. Jesus never intended for people to start these denominations and fight each other. It's non sense. It's like defining which video game console is better?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by GarretKadeDupre 3 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
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Reasons for voting decision: Even without his other great arguments, Pro could have won simply because Con never contested his source (Merriam-Webster) for the definition of Catholicism. Con displayed major ignorance of Catholicism. He also forfeited, which is why Pro gets conduct. I'm surprised that Con even accepted this debate, since his position is so difficult to defend.
Vote Placed by kbub 3 years ago
kbub
ndedologicaldebaterTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro made very clear what this debate is about in round one. It is not about whether Catholicism is inferior to Protestantism. It is about whether it is Christianity. Con did a nice job debating, but ultimately in my opinion did not win the argument that Biblical authority is the ultimate and exclusive access to the life of Jesus. Excellent debate on both sides, but this will go to Pro. Since this is not about which interpretation is better, but whether the Catholic tradition is valid, I am prepared to give a lot of leeway to Pro. Con accepted a position that was hard to defend. Also, Con forfeited the last round.