Apologetics for the Masses #442 - How to Stump an Anti-Catholic, Part 5

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How to Stump an Anti-Catholic - Facebook Conversations with Marie Taylor and Friends, Part 5.

General Comments

Hey folks,

     If you are in the Diocese of Birmingham, I want to let you know about two upcoming events so you can mark your calendars and hopefully take part:

     1) May 20th, Saturday - there is going to be an "I Thirst" conference at the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville.  This is one of a series of conferences taking place around the country this year and next as part of the national Eucharistic Revival the bishops' conference has called for.  One of the last things Jesus said on the Cross - "I thirst".  He thirsts for our souls.  For repentance.  For reparation.  For conversion.  This is going to be a dynamic event, with both an English and a Spanish track.  You've probably heard of the "revival" that recently took place at Asbury College in Kentucky, and several other college campuses around the country, well, this is going to be revival, Catholic style.  Holy Spirit-inspired and centered around the Eucharist.  Please make plans to join us.  (I'll be sharing more details, and registration information, on this in the next few weeks.)

     2) Diocesan women's retreat, September 29/30, at Our Lady of the Valley parish in Birmingham.  Retreat leader: Immaculee Ilibagiza.  This is going to be phenomenal, ladies!  Mark your calendars 'cause you are not going to want to miss this.  Again, more information, and how to register, on this in the coming weeks.


     Okay, one last visit with Marie Taylor and Friends.  I just want to share with you a few more posts from the Facebook interactions I had with them so that you can see some real life demonstrations of how, with just one question, two at the most, you can demonstrate the inconsistencies in someone's arguments and thereby demonstrate the failure of their particular Protestant theology.  Common sense, simple logic, and the Bible, are all on the side of the Catholic, people.  The purpose, though, is not simply to win an argument or to demonstrate to someone that they are wrong, the purpose is to plant a seed of truth by demonstrating error in Protestant theology.  Scriptural error.  Logical error.  Error has no rights!
     So, here are a few exchanges, on some different topics, with Marie and Friends.  I think the errors of their positions are pretty self-evident.  You should be able to see how easy it is to do these things.  It doesn't require years of Scripture study, or a degree in Theology, or any such thing.  Just pay close attention to what they say, don't get distracted by the Bible verses they quote - which, quite often, are not applicable to the topic being discussed - and apply some simple logic and common sense.  You do that and, voila!  You, too, can be a Catholic apologist/evangelist!


John Martignoni
     Ed Roper, you stated the following: 1) "The second birth is the spiritual baptism that only occurs between the new Christian and God the Holy Spirit," and 2) That water baptism and Spirit baptism "are two separate events. Just like scripture says."
     Please tell me where the Bible says either one of those things (book, chapter, and verse)?

Ed Roper
I don't need to - you wouldn't believe scripture any ways.

My Comments
     Whenever someone says, "Just like Scripture says," or "Scripture says...," or, "It says in the Bible..." and you do not recognize what THEY SAY it says in the Bible, take their quote, go to www.biblegateway.com, put that quote (with quotation marks on either side) in the search bar, and see if the Bible actually does say EXACTLY what they say it says.  If it doesn't, then reply to them thusly, "Please give me book, chapter, and verse where the Bible says what you say it says." 
     You will either: a) Get a brilliant response like the one Ed gave me above - which automatically tells you there is no such verse in the Bible; or, b) You will get a response that has one or more Bible verses in it.  When you do get responses with Bible verses, go and read the verses very carefully.  I guarantee you they do not say what the person you're talking to says they say.  They don't say it directly (or even indirectly most of the time) - which means you can then proceed to ask them, "So, basically, you're not giving me the Word of God, you're giving me your private, non-authoritative, fallible interpretation of the Word of God, right?"  The Word of Ed vs. the Word of God.  Or the Word of Marie vs. the Word of God. Etc.
     Now, in this case, the Bible actually does, in some places, make a distinction between water baptism (John's baptism of repentance) and Holy Spirit baptism (a la the disciples at Pentecost).  However, it also, in other places, shows us that baptism includes both water and the Spirit (see all 4 accounts of Jesus' baptism) and what Jesus said to Nicodemus (John 3:3-5).  And, after Jesus' Resurrection, Scripture makes it plain that the Sacrament of Baptism is both-and, not either-or.  On Pentecost, the disciples were baptized with the Holy Spirit, but then it is obvious from Peter's speech, that he is telling everyone else to be baptized with water so as to receive the Holy Spirit.  This is reiterated with the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts, chapter 8), 1st Peter 3:20-21 which tells us baptism, which "now saves you," corresponds to Noah and his family being "saved through water".  Plus, there's the prophecy related to baptism that we find in Ezekiel 36:25-29 where we find the sprinkling of water resulting in reception of the Holy Spirit, and other New Testament verses, as well.
     All of which is why Ed responded the way he did.  Ed cannot argue Scripture in a logically nor scripturally consistent manner.  Ed has to simply claim that he knows better, being one of "The Elect," and that I, as an ignorant Catholic, can't properly exegete Scripture because, of course, I'm damned to Hell for being a Catholic. 

Marie Taylor
     As Jesus Christ hung on the cross, God took every sin ever committed by every person who would ever believe, placed them on Jesus, punished Him as their Substitute (Is. 53:5, Is. 53:11, I Pet. 2:24,I Pet. 3:18) and, in exchange, gives them His perfect righteousness (Phil. 3:9, Rom. 3:22, Rom. 5:17, Rom. 10:4, II Cor. 5:21).

John Martignoni
     Marie, please tell me where in Scripture it says this: "As Jesus Christ hung on the cross, God took every sin ever committed by every person who would ever BELIEVE?" Emphasis on Jesus redeeming only those who believe?
     And please explain Timothy 4:10 in light of what you said: "For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe."

Marie Taylor
     Certainly, by teaching God provided an atonement that obtains eternal redemption (Heb. 9:12) and makes us perfect forever (Heb. 10:10, 14), Scripture by necessity limits the atonement to all those who would ever believe.

John Martignoni
     Marie, why do you and so many of the folks on those pages you hang out on have such difficulty understanding the meaning of quotation marks? 

     1) Do you admit that there is no passage in Scripture that says, and I quote, "As Jesus Christ hung on the cross, God took every sin ever committed by every person who would ever believe...?"  And, since there is no Scripture verse that says such a thing, do you admit that that is simply your fallible interpretation of Scripture as opposed to the actual words of Scripture? I.e., the Word of Marie instead of the Word of God?
     2) If Jesus is the Savior of ALL men, especially of those who believe, then doesn't that mean He is also the Savior of those who do not believe? Else why say "especially" those who believe? 
     3) Last question here: Are you saying that Jesus did not die for the sins of the whole world?

Marie Taylor
     1) Of course. I was not providing the Gospel word-for-word from Scripture, nor did I claim to be?
     2) No. Jesus is the Savior of all men in the sense that He is the ONLY Savior. As my previous answer showed, by teaching God provided an atonement that obtains eternal redemption (Heb. 9:12) and makes us perfect forever (Heb. 10:10, 14), Scripture by necessity limits the atonement to all those who would ever believe.
     3) The term "the whole world", biblically, does not always mean "every single person who ever lived". I mean, look at John 17:9 as just one example. There are many more if you'd like to discuss them. So, no, Jesus did not die for every single person who ever lived.

My Comments
     First, note that Marie, like Ed, and so many others, tends to ignore quotation marks.  So, make sure, every time you quote what someone says the Bible says, use quotation marks.  Because, again, if it isn't exactly as the Bible says it, then you are, by definition, getting someone's interpretation of what the Bible says.  And, since Protestant theology says that no man is infallible, you are getting, by definition, someone's private, non-authoritative, fallible interpretation of the Bible, as opposed to getting the actual Word of God.  Always, always, always make sure you let the other person know that you make that distinction between what they say God says, and what God actually says.

     Jesus paid the price for all men's sins.  The Bible is very clear on that.  The reason all men are not saved is because His atonement is not applied to every single person.  Why?  I mean, the Bible says that God "desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth," (1 Tim 2:4).  So why aren't all men saved?  Because there is something that has to happen in each person's life in order to have the grace merited by Christ's atonement of their sins, applied to their individual lives.  Baptism. Faith, and works.  All by the grace of God. 
     At least Marie admits, indirectly, in #1 above, that she was giving me her fallible interpretation of Scripture.  She wouldn't ever phrase it that way, but that is indeed what she is admitting there. In #2, she essentially repeats her fallible interpretation, and then in #3, gives us even more of her fallible interpretation.
     Just note from this exchange, as was the case with Ed, that simply by quoting what they say Scripture says, and asking for book, chapter, and verse as to where that quote is found in the Bible, you open the door to being able to plant a seed.  You can do this by just asking them, "Are you infallible?"  No?  Then, you simply ask, "So, what you're telling me here could be wrong, right?"  And another question you can ask, "So, why do you think your fallible interpretation of God's Word is more authoritative than my fallible interpretation of God's Word - which, by the way, fits perfectly with the infallible teaching of the Church founded by God and guided by the Holy Spirit?"  "Why do you believe you have authority over me so that I should believe your fallible interpretations at the risk of my immortal soul?"
     And you'll get responses that will be all over the map.  Some will say, "You shouldn't believe what I say, you should believe what God's Word is saying."  To which you can respond: "But, you're telling me something that is your word, not God's Word."  And on and on you can go in that same vein.  Again, the point is to maybe...just maybe...get them to realize that they could, just possibly, be wrong.  And, if there is even the possibility that they could be wrong, do they want to gamble their immortal souls that they are 98% right?  Or maybe 95% right?  Or maybe 0% right?  And do they want to act as if that which they are telling you is infallibly correct so that you will gamble your immortal soul on their word?

      Plus, they will tell you that what you're saying about fallible interpretations applies to your interpretations of the Bible as well.  To which you can say, "Good, we agree that both of our interpretations of the Bible are our private, non-authoritative, fallible interpretations of the Bible.  And that your fallilbe interpretation of the Bible carries no more weight or authority that my fallible interpretation of the Bible does...according to your theology.  So you see, according to your theology, we have no sure way of knowing what is authentic Christian doctrine and practice beyond any one person's private, non-authoritative, fallible interpretation of the Bible.  Jesus, according to you, left us without any sure way of knowing the truth.  Isn't that a pretty pathetic situation for Christians to be in?!  But, under my theology, as long as my interpretation of Scripture is in line with the infallible teaching of the Church founded by Jesus Christ and guided by the Holy Spirit, then I can indeed know the truth that will make me free!"

John Martignoni
     Ed Roper, is the Holy Spirit guiding you...yes or no? You stated in one of your posts that He is. Which means, since the Holy Spirit is infallible, then one of 2 things must be true:
     1) Either you are infallible, since the Holy Spirit Who is guiding you is infallible.
     2) The Holy Spirit isn't guiding you all of the time.

     Which one is it?

Marie Taylor
     Or, 3) the Holy Spirit is guiding Ed Roper but since God's work of sanctification is a process, He simply is not finished yet.
Scripture teaches that sanctification is a work of God (Ex. 31:13, John 17:17, 1 Thess. 5:23-24, I Cor. 1:30, Eph. 5:26, Phil. 2:13) that HE will surely do (I Thess. 5:23-24).
     Also, John S. Martignoni, wouldn't your question also apply to you? Why or why not?

My Comments
     She was raptured from the page before I got around to responding to what Marie said here in her attempt to answer for Ed.  But, do you see the problem with what she is saying?  If the Holy Spirit is guiding Ed Roper, but God's work of sanctifying Ed is still in process, then that means Ed is not perfect yet, which further means that Marie is, essentially, admitting to #2 above, that the Holy Spirit is not guiding Ed all of the time because Ed, not yet sanctified, isn't always getting His message, or isn't always interpreting it properly, or some such thing. 
     Which is a HUGE problem.  Because now the question becomes: So, when is Ed being guided by the Holy Spirit and when is he not being guided by the Holy Spirit, and how can you tell?  Again, if Ed was always being guided by the Holy Spirit, then Ed would, by definition, be infallible since the Holy Spirit is infallible.  But, if you can't distinguish between those times when Ed is or is not being guided by the Holy Spirit, then how can he claim to EVER be guided by the Holy Spirit?  How would he know at any given moment?
     Whenever someone tells you they are being guided by the Holy Spirit, then always respond with: "So, you're infallible then?"  When they say, "No," (assuming they are honest), then come back with, so everything and anything you're telling me could be wrong, right?"  They cannot get around this question...ever!  The lack of infallibility in Protestantism is its Achilles' Heel.  No infallibility, no assurance.  No assurance on scriptural interpretations.  No assurance on doctrine.  No assurance on salvation.  No assurance...period!

Bobby Johnson
     "Repentance is not a work performed to merit salvation. Repentance is what saved people do."

John Martignoni
     The Word of God says: "For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation and brings no regret, but worldly grief produces death." (2 Cor 7:10).  The  Word of Bobby says repentance comes after salvation.  The Word of God  says repentance leads to salvation.  Hmm...which should I believe - the Word of Bobby or the Word of God?

Bobby Johnson
     Once again as usual you show your total inability to go exegesis and are only ably to cherry pick verses. You should leave Scripture to Christians because it's not something you do well. Maybe that's why your magicalsterium forbids you to engage in private personal interpretation as you seem to like to do.
     Question for John S. Martignoni: If repentence is messary for salvation have you repented of every single sin you have committed? Have you made sure there are none you have missed?


John Martignoni
     To your question about repentance - just so you know - it is a nonsensical question and it shows just how little you seem to understand the Catholic Faith.  But, yes, I have repented of every single sin I have ever committed. You see, Bobby, it's very easy to do: "God, I am sorry for all my sins." See how easy that was? You seem to think that I have to list every single sin separately for God because maybe He doesn't know what they are? 
     Have you ever thought of doing this thing called "research" before you go about disparaging other people's beliefs? Because it makes you look really silly to say things, or imply things, about the Catholic Faith that all the Catholics on here know to be false. Plus, it's not really a Christian thing to do to spread misperceptions, half-truths, and outright lies about someone else's beliefs, now is it? Would Jesus be proud of you for doing that?

My Comments
     Notice how Bobby and Ed respond in essentially the same way to my questions?  I don't understand.  My inability to do exegesis.  My cherry-picking of verses.  But, did he try to explain why my understanding was wrong?  No, of course not.  Did Ed try to respond to my arguments with cogent and rational counter-arguments?  No, of course not.  Expect the same in your conversations.  Don't let it get you off track, though.  Note the lack of answer, ask them if they are capable of giving a direct answer to your question, ask the question again.  Also ask them if they're infallible and then tell them that you believe the Word of God, but you don't really buy into the Word of Ed, or the Word of Bobby, or the Word of Marie.
     And look at the complete lack of logic in what he is saying here - repentance comes AFTER salvation, really?!  You can't be saved if your sins aren't forgiven.  "The Elect" agree to that.  Yet, your sins can't be forgiven unless you repent of them.  So, repentance comes first, then forgiveness of sins, then salvation.  But, because Bobby, Ed, Marie, et al believe in Sola Fide, that means we can't do anything that leads to our salvation.  We can't do any works that have any impact on our salvation.  Therefore, repentance...a work...has to come after salvation. 
     Oh how messed up people get when they believe in bad theology.  They have to twist Scripture, twist logic, and twist plain ol' common sense in an attempt to cling to the lies they believe. 

(Okay, last one)
John Martignoni
     Question for Marie Taylor: Can you be saved if your sins are not forgiven...yes or no?

Marie Taylor
     No, you cannot be saved if your sins are not forgiven. And how do we receive forgiveness? By believing in Jesus (Acts 10:43, John 5:24).

John Martignoni

     Question for Marie Taylor: Do you have to forgive the sins of others in order to be saved? Yes or no?

Marie Taylor
"No; we are saved by grace through faith and not by works. Our forgiveness of others is a fruit of salvation, not the cause."

John Martignoni
     Matthew 6:14-15, "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."
     So, the Word of God says that if you do not forgive others of their sins, then God will not forgive you of your sins.  And, as you agree, if your sins are not forgiven, then you cannot be saved. 
     Therefore, in order to be saved, you must forgive the sins of others, which, as you admit, is a work.  Yet, you say that we do not have to forgive others of their sins in order to have our sins forgiven.  Marie, should we believe the Word of God or the Word of Marie on this?

Marie Taylor
     You should always believe the Word of God over me. As you have acknowledged, however, you also must interpret passages in context with the rest of Scripture.  Jesus was not teaching salvation by forgiveness as a work because, per the Holy Spirit, we are saved by grace through faith and not by works but FOR good works (Eph. 2:10).
     Forgiveness is a work we are saved FOR but not BY. Surely you agree there is no dissension in the Godhead.  Moreover, Jesus teaches that none of the sheep will perish. Are you teaching here contrary to Jesus? Yes, you are. 
     Moreover, is there a reason you think someone who is supernaturally regenerated by the power of God would NOT forgive? If so, perhaps you have yet to experience regeneration. If the forgiveness received at the cost of the blood of Jesus is so ineffective in your heart that you must hold grudges and not forgive, you are not a good tree. Rather, you are an example of a false professors Jesus spoke of in Matthew 7.

John Martignoni
     Sorry, but all you are doing here is deflecting from my question...not answering it. The Bible...the Word of God...very clearly says, and I quote: "If you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." Is Jesus talking to the saved or the unsaved here?

Marie Taylor
     Again, by your own acknowledgment, all Scripture should be interpreted in light of the rest of Scripture. And since the rest of Scripture dictates that your interpretation of this verse is in error, I'll go with the rest of Scripture.

John Martignoni
     Sorry, Marie, not good enough. What's the matter, can't your theological system answer such an easy and straightforward biblical question? Are you not aware of the servant who was forgiven much (i.e., saved), but then he refused to forgive a fellow servant of just a little, and all of a sudden he wasn't saved any more? That is consistent with what Jesus says in Matt 6:14-15 about not having your sins forgiven if you don't forgive the sins of others.
     So, in Matt 6:14-15, is Jesus talking to the saved or the unsaved. Easy question, Marie...if you are indeed "one of the elect," it should be an easy answer.

Marie Taylor
Jesus is talking to believers.

John S. Martignoni
     Okay, according to your opinion, Jesus is talking to believers, the saved, when He says, "if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." Isn't that a pretty ridiculous thing to say to people who had already had their sins irrevocably forgiven (according to your theology) and who had already forgiven those who had sinned against them, again, according to your theology? If they were believers, then, according to you, they've already forgiven those who have sinned against them since forgiveness of others is a "fruit of salvation". 
     Which means Jesus' warning here a pretty ridiculous warning, isn't it?  And, if He was talking to unbelievers, then it wouldn't matter whether they forgave others of their sins or not, because they still wouldn't be saved. And, as you and your pals have said so often, forgiving others of their sins would be a work, and works have nothing to do with our salvation.  So, your theology, your fallible interpretation of Scripture, results in Jesus issuing empty threats here, doesn't it?  Your theology renders this passage of Scripture utterly ridiculous and nonsensical. 
     Now, what about the servant in Matt 18 who was forgiven much by his lord - which means he was saved - then he didn't forgive the other servant of the debts that servant owed him, and when the lord found out, he essentially reinstuted the debt of the 1st servant that had been forgiven. So, 1st servant...forgiven by the lord. 2nd servant not forgiven by 1st servant. 1st servant has forgiveness (salvation) revoked by the lord. That isn't possible in your theology, is it?

My Comments
     I'll just mention a few salient points here about this exchange:
     1) With just 2 quick questions, I was able to put the spotlight on a huge contradiction between her theology and the Bible. 
     2) "Jesus was not teaching salvation by forgiveness as a work...," says the Word of Marie.  The Word of God nowhere says such a thing. 
     3) "And since the rest of Scripture dictates that your interpretation of this verse is in error, I'll go with the rest of Scripture."  Actually, it is not the "rest of Scripture" that she is referring to here, it is her private, non-authoritative, fallible interpretation of the "rest of Scripture" to which she is referring.  Big difference. 
    4) "Forgiveness is a work we are saved FOR but not BY."  Again, according to the Word of Marie.  And she says this right after she says I should always "believe the Word of God over [her]".  Had I been able to before she was raptured, I would have asked her where the Bible says, "Forgiveness is a work we are saved FOR but not BY?"  And I would have asked for book, chapter, and verse.  How would she have responded?  She would have given me several Bible verses that do not say directly, or even indirectly, what she says they say. 
     5) Notice how she tries to deflect my questions and also makes a personal attack on me in regard to my not yet experiencing regeneration.  The only reason she ended up answering my question is because I threatened to delete every post she made until she answered the question, and then I deleted about half a dozen posts, on a few different threads, before she finally gave a direct answer to the question. 
     6) She had no choice but to answer that Jesus was talking to believers.  But, either way she answered - believers or unbelievers - she was already boxed into a logical and theological corner from which there was no rescue.  Again, that's the position that bad theology will put you in. 

Closing Comments

     I hope this issue has been helpful.  Maybe you've picked up a tip or two that you can use in your own conversations and dialogues with Protestants. 
     Next issue I'll give you my take on the "revival" that occurred at Asbury College in Kentucky, Samford University in Birmingham, and on several other college campuses around the country. 
     Until then, I hope you have a great week.  Please keep the Bible Christian Society in your prayers, and rest assured that we will be keeping you and yours in ours


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Apologetics for the Masses