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Author Topic: "Irrefutable Questions" that Orthodox and Catholics Can't Answer, says website  (Read 3205 times) Average Rating: 0
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Libertas
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« on: September 27, 2010, 10:05:27 PM »

Hello!

Before I introduce the topic, I will tell you where I'm at. I've been reading some of the Apostolic Fathers, specifically Quadratus of Athens, Papias, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. Polycarp, and the Didache. It's becoming easier for me to see how the ancient Church differs from my current Evangelical world. I feel that I've moved closer to Orthodoxy.

For those who read my previous thread in this forum, I've contacted the Ukrainian parish and learned that they have liturgy bimonthly, and the next one is this Sunday. If my job doesn't get in the way (pray, if you would!), I plan to attend. After this, my Sundays get cloudy and it could be difficult to attend again for a while. Ideally, I'd like to become confident enough to possibly become a catechumen this Sunday (though it's not urgent, I guess).

Now, to the matter at hand. I've found this interrogative critique of Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy ("the Traditional churches") on a website. I'm not using it to challenge Orthodoxy. I want to examine it and answer some of his challenges to help build myself up. There are undoubtedly people here who know more than I, and may have greater insight. If you would please help, even by commenting on a single point, it would be good for me!

Here's the source material: http://www.bible.ca/catholic-questions.htm

Thanks in advance for any help, whether by posting or praying! God bless!

-Andrew
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« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2010, 11:15:59 PM »

Bible: While both Catholics and Orthodox generally accept the same books, the canons were developed and approved over a series of councils (it was a topic discussed). Most of which agree with each other. This website provides a list of said councils in an eye-chart format to try and explain the origin of the bible.

http://www.oodegr.com/english/ag_grafi/biblia.grafis1.htm

I'm not going to dissect all the questions at the moment, but the majority of which show a lack of church history and/or a misunderstanding of church function.

Therefore, I would suggest you get some good books and do some of your own digging. It will provide you with better answers and you'll beef your own knowledge up in the process. I think you'll be able to satisfy your curiosity faster that way.

I know many on here have wonderful collections and personal libraries if they'd be kind enough to point you to some good starts (better than I can).
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« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2010, 11:28:48 PM »

I did notice that they say that only the Orthodox keep the triple immersion formula, but disregard all of the other rules he discusses. Not that it really matters, but generally we still do not kneel on Sundays, nor Saturdays for that matter. There are a few exceptions, but then again we are not legalists.
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« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2010, 11:32:16 PM »

I'm certainly not the person to dissect these questions, but if the author were to take Ecclesiastical History 101, they would realize the utter absurdity of 90% of their questions.

Also, their table of the current state of traditional practices is flat out wrong, with the exception of drinking milk and honey and not bathing after baptism, at least one of the churches still performs all of these (depending on the Catholic rite being used, anyway). As for those two, they were practiced until the fall of the Byzantine Empire but have fallen into disuse except for in a few select settings since.
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« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2010, 11:36:03 PM »

Who ever composed those so-called irrefutable questions is gravely ill-informed. I hope you don't buy into that nonsense.

Just to disprove one of the many accusations on that website, and I quote: 'If the "apostolic tradition" was to make the sign of the cross on the forehead, why do both Orthodox and Catholic churches change this to the current practice of the sign on the chest and head? If extra-biblical oral tradition is to be followed, then why don't the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches practice all of these things? '

I will speak for my tradition. Hispanic Catholics do make the sign of the cross on their forehead. In fact, they make it thrice, on the forehead, then the face (from forehead to chin), then from head to chest.

Also, before the priest reads the gospel he makes the sign of the cross on his forhead, on his lips and then over his heart  while simultaneously saying, "may the word of the Lord be on my mind, on my lips and in my heart.
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« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2010, 11:38:37 PM »

I just looked at the list again of supposed traditions that have fallen into disuse, and noticed he lists disowning the devil at baptism. Actually, I renounced Satan at my reception into the Church last month, and if you are ever received you will do the same thing.

This guy really hasn't done his research very well.
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« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2010, 12:12:27 AM »

The site is rather toxic, because it combines Truth with falsehood.  Best to be avoided.

It's "challenges" are easily answered. For instance:

Quote
If the Roman Catholic church gave the world the Bible, being infallible, then why did Rome reject or question the inspiration of James and Hebrews , then later accept it? Conversely, Rome accepted as scripture books that were later rejected. If the Catholic church really is illuminated by the Holy Spirit so that men can trust her as "God's organization", why was she so wrong about something so simple? Should not the "Holy See" have known?
If the Orthodox church gave the world the Bible, being infallible, then why did the eastern churches reject or question the inspiration of Revelation, then later accept it? Conversely, the east accepted as scripture books that were later rejected. If the Orthodox church really is illuminated by the Holy Spirit so that men can trust her as "God's organization", why was she so wrong about something so simple?
I'll try to avoid answering for the Vatican, but as for the Orthodox, the Church, being all authority by Christ, it was fully within the competence of the Orthodox Church to examine the book of Revelation to accept it as part of the Church's public dogmatic proclamation or not.  Revelation had no competence to judge the Orthodox Church.  Revelation draws its authority from being part of the Tradition of the Church.  The Church does not derive its authority from Revelation. That is easily proven: the earliest Scripture we have is I Thessalonians, and it already presupposes the Church.  If the Church had to wait for Scripture for its existence, how did she exist those two decades between Pentecost and Thessalonians?

The author doesn't seem to know what infallible means. Otherwise they'd be asking, if Revelation was infallible on the basis of sola scriptura, why wasn't it accepted as part of the canon (something not in the scriptura) from the beginning? And he also would not open himself to his larger problem, that if the Orthodox Church (and for the purposes of this argument, the Vatican) is not infalllible, then what are we to make of him depending on the text that the Orthodox Church canonized and transmitted, whence he got it?
If the Roman Catholic church gave the world the Bible in 397 AD, then why did many different versions of canons continue to circulate long afterwards?

This "question" is simplistic, not simple.

Quote
If the Roman Catholic church gave us the Bible, why were the two synods of Hippo (393 AD) and Carthage, (397 AD) African councils, and not initiatives of Rome?

Few of the Ecumenical Councils were the initiative of Rome, and none exclusively, and one (the Fifth) was held over Rome's opposition.  Given that, I don't see the point of arguing this.
 
Quote
Since the synod Carthage in 393 AD stated, "But let Church beyond sea (Rome) be consulted about confirming this canon", does this not prove that Rome had no direct input or initiative in determining the canon.


No. When Rome followed the principle of conciliary, there was a lot of back and forth between Rome (and the other Patriarchates) and the lesser sees.  Councils always sent their results to other bishops for their confirmation and imput.

Quote
Since the two synods of Hippo (393 AD) and Carthage, (397 AD) were under the control of what would later become the "orthodox church", how can the Roman Catholic church claim they determined the Canon? Would not such a claim be more naturally due the Eastern Orthodox church?


Need I say more (except that both Hippo and Carthage were in the jurisdiction of Rome in the 4th century)?

Quote
If the Catholic church, "by her own inherent God given power and authority" gave the world the Bible, why did she not get it right the first time? Why did the Roman Catholic church wait until 1546 AD in the Council of Trent, to officially add the Apocrypha to the Canon?

What first time is he talking about, as Hippo and Carthage agree with Trent?

Quote
Both Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox church leaders make the identical claim that they gave the world the Bible. If both the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches make the same claim they gave the world the Bible, why do they have different books in each of their Bibles? Whose "church authority" shall we believe? Whose tradition is the one we should follow?


The author rejects the Apostles and takes the rabbis as his guide, accepting the Masoretic Text of the Jews c. 800 over the text used in the days of the Apostles (LXX) and copied by Christians: no Christian OT manuscript lacks what he calls apocrypha.  That the Jews used that books is proved by the feast of Hanukkah (which has scriptural warrant only in Maccabbees), etc.  The Vulgate and LXX canons of the OT overlap, that of the NT is identical.

What we know is not to believe the 'church authority' which wasn't around in the first centuries of the Church to determine the canon.

Quote
Provide a single example of a doctrine that originates from an oral Apostolic Tradition that the Bible is silent about? Provide proof that this doctrinal tradition is apostolic in origin.


The canon itself.  The scriptures do not contain a table of contents.  The Fathers that the Apostles personally consecrated (SS Clement, Ignatius) quote from what is contained in that canon.

Another Tradition is the instution of the priesthood, as opposed to the episcopate and diaconate.  The NT speaks of the latter two but the parish presbyters were not seperate from the bishops yet.  But they were by 95 (when the Apostle John yet lived and Revelation not yet written), a fact that both SS Clement and Ignatius, to whom the Apostles personally entrusted the Church, attest to.

Quote
Provide a single example of where inspired apostolic "oral revelation" (tradition) differed from "written" (scripture)?


Since the Scritpure arises from Tradition, there would be no sense for them to contradict themselves.

Quote
If you are not permitted to engage in private interpretation of the Bible, how do you know which "apostolic tradition" is correct between the Roman Catholic, the Orthodox and the Watchtower churches, for all three teach the organization alone can interpret scripture correctly, to the exclusion of individual?


The one that can point to an unbroken chain of witnesses to its interpretation from the Apostles onward, i.e. the Orthodox.  In every generation from the Apostles until today, we have persons who would (actually are) in communion with us.

Quote
Why did God fail to provide an inspired and infallible list of Old Testament books to Israel? Why would God suddenly provide such a list only after Israel was destroyed in 70 AD?

Because the OT is understood only in the Light of the NT, in the Light of Christ.

Quote
How could the Jews know that books of Kings or Isaiah were Scripture?


The author seems to be ignorant of the Hebrew Church.

Quote
If the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches both believes that the scripture: "the church is the pillar and foundation of truth" means the church is protected from error then: a. Why do they teach doctrine so different that they are not even in communion with each other?

One is wrong. And a lot of the doctrines and dogmas they have in common, opposed to this eglise du jour who wrote that site.

Quote
b. How do you account for the vast number of documented theological errors made by the pope and the church in general?

Such as?

The author has the bigger problem of his sect having no documented existence at all.

Quote
If the both the Orthodox and Catholic churches follow apostolic oral tradition exactly, how come they teach doctrine so different, that they are not even in communion with each other?


We are not in communion with the Vatican because it does not follow apostolic Tradition exactly.

How is it that Protestants all follow sola scriptura and teach doctrines so different.

Quote
Both Tertullian and Jerome gave a list of oral traditions that were not found in the Bible. (Tertullian, The crown or De Corona, ch 3-4), (Jerome, Dialogue Against the Luciferians, 8 ) Tertullian said of these practices that "without any written instrument, we maintain on the ground of tradition alone". These include, baptizing by immersion three times, giving the one baptized a "drink of milk and honey" then forbidding the person from taking a bath for a week, kneeling in Sunday mass was forbidden, and the sign of the cross was to be made on the forehead. Jerome, echoing Tertullian, said that these "observances of the Churches, which are due to tradition, have acquired the authority of the written law". Why does the Catholic church not immerse thrice and allow kneeling? Why do both the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches not keep any of these traditions, with the exception of thrice immersion by the Orthodox? Why do Roman Catholic churches today have knelling rails in front of every pew? If the "apostolic tradition" was to make the sign of the cross on the forehead, why do both Orthodox and Catholic churches change this to the current practice of the sign on the chest and head? If extra-biblical oral tradition is to be followed, then why don't the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches practice all of these things?

Because the Church exercises discernment. Just like the Lord accepted the synogogue (not warranted by the OT) but rejected their traditions which became their Talmud.  The Church, like Christ, does not speak like one of the scribes, but with authority.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2010, 12:46:26 AM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2010, 12:14:38 AM »

The author of that site also seems to have completely missed the fact that Catholics, every Holy Saturday (at least in the Roman Rite), repeat their baptismal vows, which include a verbal renouncement of the devil and all his works. This also, as it happens, handily refutes the fundamentalist claim that Catholics don't personally ask for salvation!  Cheesy I love it when people don't know what they're talking about.
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« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2010, 12:22:59 AM »

Before the gospel reading, Roman Catholics cross the forehead with the thumb (and the lips and the heart). It's an old practice and the Catholic Encyclopedia says it predates the current sign of the cross. One can sometimes accompany that with a prayer. "The lord be on my mind, my lips and my heart." Gloria tibi Domine.

The ICEL texts the Roman Catholics use for baptism (as well as Holy Saturday renewal of baptismal vows) is horrible, but if you want to get a gist in English of what they do at a baptism, go rent out the Godfather (with the Latin and pre-ICEL pomps and works language). "Do you renounce Satan." (Al Pacino answers for the child, "I do renounce him", while his henchman are disposing of the heads of the five families) "And all his works". "And all his pomps." Their question answered by Youtube. These guys are embarassing.

http://noolmusic.com/google_videos/the_godfather___baptism_scene.php
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« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2010, 12:29:47 AM »

Dear Libertas, thank you for the link.  I came across this a long time ago but haven't thought of it in quite a while.  I just had time to skim over it briefly but I am tempted to take a shot at the questions, perhaps another day if there is time.  I have a weakness for trivia, I guess.  At first glance, I will say that I noticed several questions ask how the Orthodox and Roman Catholics can both possibly be right when they differ in so many ways.  From an Orthodox perspective, Roman Catholicism is not right but is heretical, so we wouldn't try to make the case that this question assumes we would make.  The fact that the person who put these questions together does not realize that the Orthodox Church does not consider Roman Catholicism to be part of the Church is enough to show that those behind this are severely misinformed.  

A quick note also on the canon of Scripture – I’m not sure the canon of Scripture is fixed, even now.  There are different books listed by different councils and Fathers, and when a Bible is published in an Orthodox land then it would probably follow the same canon that is contained in the Orthodox Study Bible.  But as I understand it, fixing the canon was more of an attempt to fix the liturgical cycle of Scripture readings, or to specify what should be read from in the public services of the Church.  I do not think the issue is one of the Church saying one day that a writing is "inspired" or "legitimate" and the next day saying that the same writings is "spurious" or "uninspired".  Some of the earliest writings of the Church refer to the “memoirs of the Apostles” or other such terms and do not even call the New Testament writings “Scripture.”  In the Church nobody says today that we should not read the Shepherd of Hermas or the letters of Clement, just that these writings are not read publically in Church.  These questions seem to suggest that for something to be true, there could not have been any debate, discussion, or disagreement on the issue, but rather it had to be somehow “magically” revealed from God.  Perhaps that is how Protestant Evangelicals think their Bible came about, but this is not at all what the Orthodox claim.

In any case, most of these questions can be answered by the fact that the Orthodox Church is the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church and so the differences in Roman Catholicism are largely the results of their falling away from the Church; and secondly by the Orthodox Church's criterion of truth as stated best by St. Vincent of Lerins - "we hold that faith which has been believed everywhere, always, by all."  We may see development here and there, or some differences in local traditions in the life of the Church throughout the ages, but we believe that any such changes were the result of the guidance of the Holy Spirit, just as the Lord said in the gospel of St. John that he would send the Holy Spirit to "guide you [the Church] into all truth."

Anyway, that’s my quick initial impression, but unless someone else beats me to it, I may be tempted to take a shot at all the questions another time.  

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« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2010, 12:33:18 AM »

I think ialmisry gave a good respose.  Bravo! 
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« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2010, 01:56:18 AM »

Well... I’m certainly no expert but I’ll take a poke at these “Irrefutable” questions.

I will point out though that many of the things on the site are directed more specifically at Roman Catholicism than they are at Orthodoxy...

1.   The answer would be that the books are now a part of the canon so the Holy Spirit obviously guided the Church to include them. The “Holy See” has been wrong about many things and is of course not ‘infallible’ by any means.
2.   Same as above... the fact that Revelation ultimately was accepted by the Church means that the Holy Spirit guided her to do so.  Revelation is found in the Bible now because it was meant to be there.
3.   There is more to it than the owner of the “Irrefutable” website seems to be aware of. To this day the Orthodox Bible contains more books and verses than R.C. or Masoretic based Protestant Bibles.
4.   None of the Orthodox accepted councils were initiatives of Rome. The Roman Catholic Church did not “give us the Bible”... The Holy Spirit gave us the Bible through Christ’s Church. Rome was once a part of the Orthodoxy – so it would be more accurate to say that the Orthodox gave the world the Bible. Protestantism most certainly did not bring us the Bible – this much we know as well!
5.   Short answer... Yes. There was much more to the Church than just Rome, and when Rome left the Orthodoxy in 1054 AD – the others remained (Jerusalem, Alexandria, Antioch, Constantinople, etc, etc).
6.   Absolutely!
7.   Ask Rome!...  Regardless, I would venture to say that the ongoing Salvific teachings of the Church are far more important than a solidly fixed canon of Scripture.
8.   Well, the Orthodox Church utilizes the Septuagint – which is the oldest Old Testament there is... Of course I will say that we should follow the authority of the Orthodox (more than just the Greek) Church. The Tradition we should follow is the original one. (Hint: the original Church confesses the original [unaltered] Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed!)
9.   Does there have to be one?
10.   Since any oral teachings would have come from the same source as the written... there would be no contradictions between the two.
11.   Simple... The Orthodox Tradition is the unchanged apostolic faith.
12.   God has not failed to provide anything! The Septuagint was translated in the third century BC – by Hebrews for the Alexandrian library.  The list of books declared by the Pharisaic ‘rabbis’ in Jamnia  was an anti-Christian reaction. The ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ shed much light on this issue because they predate Jamnia and show that there was conscious censorship.
13.   Maybe it’s just me – but I don’t even understand this one.
14.   Easy. Only one of them (the Orthodox) are actually correct!
15.   See 14.
16.   The author needs to learn to understand that there is Tradition and tradition. Orthodox still baptize by threefold immersion... Orthodox do touch the forehead when Crossing themselves... I think the Eucharist and the weightier matters of the law are more important than things like the specific methodology used to Cross one’s self. As for the little chart... are they serious?
17.   To my knowledge, I do not believe that any R.C.s would claim succession from Ephesus... Their own valid succession comes of course through Ss. Peter and Paul but nevertheless the Latin point is in fact a valid one.
18.   This question is convoluted. We know that there are two types of Tradition because St. Paul wrote: (paraphrasing) “Therefore brethren stand fast and hold those traditions which we (apostles) delivered to you whether in writing or in person.” It’s not hard to imagine that the apostles taught much more in the Churches in person than they did in writing. The Church predates the New Testament.
19.   St. Paul of course spoke of the O.T. when he spoke of “Scriptures” since the N.T. as we know it did not exist at that time.  The point was that the O.T. pointed to Christ and His Church... The New Testament points to the Church which Christ founded. Scripture is clear that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation. Christ opened the Scriptures (the O.T.) to the apostles and the apostles passed that deposit of God-given faith and knowledge to the Church.
20.   Again – this question makes no sense to me... Orthodox certainly do have the Scriptures read to them all year long during the Divine Liturgy! We Orthodox certainly do not espouse ‘Sola Scriptura’! We should encourage and help all of our brothers and sisters to read, and the Bible is a wonderful way to learn!
21.   See above... We don’t believe in ‘Sola Scriptura’ – so?? If a person cannot read – then obviously the only way they can receive the Scriptures is by spoken word!
22.   ??
23.   ??
24.   Careful investigation? Joining the clergy? What is the point here??
25.   Once more I fail to grasp the relevance of this question. Who is he to say that St. Paul (or one of his scribes) authored the letter to the Hebrews? If the Church (which St. Paul had a large part in founding) says that St. Paul wrote the epistle to the Hebrews... then why should we doubt that? In any case – does our salvation depend on whether or not Hebrews was written by St. Paul or not?!?
26.   My answer would be: the Roman Catholics do not represent the one true Church... The Eastern Orthodox do! How can one know for sure? Go there!
27.   See above.
28.   Obviously one faith/tradition is the real deal and one has been made up and modified over time. An honest, unbiased examination of Church history will demonstrate which is which.
29.   Tradition must be based upon the truth. There is after all, only one truth!

I know there are others here more capable than myself who will tear this list of “Irrefutable Questions”... but that’s a good start I think.

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« Reply #12 on: September 28, 2010, 06:23:32 AM »

Hello!

Before I introduce the topic, I will tell you where I'm at. I've been reading some of the Apostolic Fathers, specifically Quadratus of Athens, Papias, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. Polycarp, and the Didache. It's becoming easier for me to see how the ancient Church differs from my current Evangelical world. I feel that I've moved closer to Orthodoxy.

For those who read my previous thread in this forum, I've contacted the Ukrainian parish and learned that they have liturgy bimonthly, and the next one is this Sunday. If my job doesn't get in the way (pray, if you would!), I plan to attend. After this, my Sundays get cloudy and it could be difficult to attend again for a while. Ideally, I'd like to become confident enough to possibly become a catechumen this Sunday (though it's not urgent, I guess).

Now, to the matter at hand. I've found this interrogative critique of Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy ("the Traditional churches") on a website. I'm not using it to challenge Orthodoxy. I want to examine it and answer some of his challenges to help build myself up. There are undoubtedly people here who know more than I, and may have greater insight. If you would please help, even by commenting on a single point, it would be good for me!

Here's the source material: http://www.bible.ca/catholic-questions.htm

Thanks in advance for any help, whether by posting or praying! God bless!

-Andrew

I'll answer this later but the Bible.ca website is ran by the Churches of Christ or Cambellite movement. They come from the 19th century Restorationist movement of Alexander Cambell and Barton Stone. I use to go to this website alot back in the late 1990's. I also had a number of friends back in those days who were churches of christ.



« Last Edit: September 28, 2010, 06:24:47 AM by jnorm888 » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: September 28, 2010, 01:18:40 PM »

I'm certainly not the person to dissect these questions, but if the author were to take Ecclesiastical History 101, they would realize the utter absurdity of 90% of their questions.



^^^This.
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« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2011, 03:34:15 PM »

These questions are absolutely ridiculous.
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« Reply #15 on: August 03, 2011, 04:08:49 PM »

These questions are absolutely ridiculous.
You resurrected this thread just to say THAT? Huh Could you explain how these questions are absolutely ridiculous?
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« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2011, 04:20:16 PM »

These questions are absolutely ridiculous.
You resurrected this thread just to say THAT? Huh Could you explain how these questions are absolutely ridiculous?
Sorry  Embarrassed I'll provide just a few examples if that's enough:
Quote
If the Roman Catholic church gave us the Bible, why were the two synods of Hippo (393 AD) and Carthage, (397 AD) African councils, and not initiatives of Rome?
Seriously, does this guy know any Church history? Probably because this was long before the East-West schism, and prior to that date both the Eastern and Western Churches played an integral role in the Church.

Quote
If the Roman Catholic church gave the world the Bible, being infallible, then why did Rome reject or question the inspiration of James and Hebrews
I should ask why Luther wanted to take the book of James out of scripture, but then later was convinced not to by his followers. In this question, the writer is basically shooting himself in the foot in the sense that the founders of his own tradition did almost the same thing.

Overall, this guy is grabbing at straws trying to "refute" Orthodoxy and Catholicism.

P.S. Sorry, for resurrecting the thread for such a silly reason, I have to get used to ignoring dead threads like this...
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« Reply #17 on: August 03, 2011, 04:35:36 PM »

Overall, this guy is grabbing at straws trying to "refute" Orthodoxy and Catholicism.

I agree. My thread was much better, and while there were some attempts at defending Orthodoxy, I believe that two of my questions still remain unanswered (and always will!)  Tongue

Questions No Orthodox Christian Can Answer

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« Reply #18 on: August 03, 2011, 05:58:31 PM »

Hello!

Before I introduce the topic, I will tell you where I'm at. I've been reading some of the Apostolic Fathers, specifically Quadratus of Athens, Papias, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. Polycarp, and the Didache. It's becoming easier for me to see how the ancient Church differs from my current Evangelical world. I feel that I've moved closer to Orthodoxy.

For those who read my previous thread in this forum, I've contacted the Ukrainian parish and learned that they have liturgy bimonthly, and the next one is this Sunday. If my job doesn't get in the way (pray, if you would!), I plan to attend. After this, my Sundays get cloudy and it could be difficult to attend again for a while. Ideally, I'd like to become confident enough to possibly become a catechumen this Sunday (though it's not urgent, I guess).

Now, to the matter at hand. I've found this interrogative critique of Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy ("the Traditional churches") on a website. I'm not using it to challenge Orthodoxy. I want to examine it and answer some of his challenges to help build myself up. There are undoubtedly people here who know more than I, and may have greater insight. If you would please help, even by commenting on a single point, it would be good for me!

Here's the source material: http://www.bible.ca/catholic-questions.htm

Thanks in advance for any help, whether by posting or praying! God bless!

-Andrew

I echo others in advising you to stay away from that site. If you have any questions about the orthodoxy of the Orthodox Church, just put those forward. In the meantime, here are some sources you may wish to consult:

Becoming Orthodox: A Journey to the Ancient Christian Faith. The Rev. Peter E. Gillquist. Ben Lomond, CA: Conciliar Press, 1989.

The Heresy of Orthodoxy: How Contemporary Culture's Fascination with Diversity Has Reshaped Our Understanding of Early Christianity.Andreas J. Kostenberger and Michael Kruger. Crossway Books, 2010.

The Orthodox Church: New Edition. Timothy Ware (Metropolitan Kallistos of Diokleia). Penguin, 1993
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« Reply #19 on: August 25, 2011, 01:13:04 PM »

I went through each of these questions and refuted them in my head, and was very tempted to email the author.  But then I realized that my words will do nothing, only the Trinity can save him.  He views Catholicism/Orthodoxy in the way a fundamentalist views their own beliefs.  Take kneeling for example; he condemns Catholics for kneeling in worship when he himself has no objection to it (or I am assuming).  When I have some time I'll write down objections.

It would be funny if OC.net compiled all answers to his questions and sent them to him.  A waste of time, but I'm sure most of us would learn a thing or two in the process.
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« Reply #20 on: August 25, 2011, 01:32:09 PM »

Those questions are ridiculous. This individual evidently thought of these one night and didnt even feel like looking up history. If this person did so, these questions would be down to about 5 or so.

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« Reply #21 on: August 25, 2011, 08:06:51 PM »

I'm not the best of anything, but I am sometimes stunned by the fact that people let themselves stay unaware of things which are easily settled by picking up a book or going online. It's one thing to have different views, it's another to not want to know even the simplest definitions. It sounds like the guy who made that site thinks he knows all he needs to know, from a polemic point of view. Even if he never converts or changes his mind, at least he could practice some natural curiosity.
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« Reply #22 on: August 26, 2011, 12:09:31 PM »

Quote
'm not the best of anything, but I am sometimes stunned by the fact that people let themselves stay unaware of things which are easily settled by picking up a book or going online. It's one thing to have different views, it's another to not want to know even the simplest definitions. It sounds like the guy who made that site thinks he knows all he needs to know, from a polemic point of view. Even if he never converts or changes his mind, at least he could practice some natural curiosity

Thats the problem.The culture of hyper-emotional fundementalism (which this person obviously ascribes to) dosent really have alot of room for education and intellectual dialog. A few of my family members are of this stripe, and at one time I leaned that way too. They only speak of facts that prove their point and dismiss all other facts out-of-hand as biased against their view.

PP
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« Reply #23 on: August 26, 2011, 01:13:08 PM »

I was surprised to learn that Anglicans/Episcopalians still renounce Satan at baptism, at least if they're using the books. I wonder if Lutherans do?
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« Reply #24 on: August 26, 2011, 01:23:47 PM »

I went through each of these questions and refuted them in my head, and was very tempted to email the author.  But then I realized that my words will do nothing, only the Trinity can save him.  He views Catholicism/Orthodoxy in the way a fundamentalist views their own beliefs.  Take kneeling for example; he condemns Catholics for kneeling in worship when he himself has no objection to it (or I am assuming).  When I have some time I'll write down objections.

It would be funny if OC.net compiled all answers to his questions and sent them to him.  A waste of time, but I'm sure most of us would learn a thing or two in the process.

A waste to be sure. IIRC, Steven Ruud owns the site and refused to answer my corrections after his initial reply to my attempt several years ago. He asked me to show where he was wrong. I did. He never answered; or corrected the errors.
Better that we correct him here and make sure search engines find them here.
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« Reply #25 on: August 26, 2011, 01:30:32 PM »

I went through each of these questions and refuted them in my head, and was very tempted to email the author.  But then I realized that my words will do nothing, only the Trinity can save him.  He views Catholicism/Orthodoxy in the way a fundamentalist views their own beliefs.  Take kneeling for example; he condemns Catholics for kneeling in worship when he himself has no objection to it (or I am assuming).  When I have some time I'll write down objections.

It would be funny if OC.net compiled all answers to his questions and sent them to him.  A waste of time, but I'm sure most of us would learn a thing or two in the process.

A waste to be sure. IIRC, Steven Ruud owns the site and refused to answer my corrections after his initial reply to my attempt several years ago. He asked me to show where he was wrong. I did. He never answered; or corrected the errors.
Better that we correct him here and make sure search engines find them here.
the voice of wisdom and experience.
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