Saturday, May 7, 2011

Conversation between Protestant and Catholic

P: Do you believe homosexuality to be a sin?

C: Yes, the Catholic Church teaches that homosexuality is a sin.
P: But is that what you, personally believe?
C: I’m a Catholic, so I believe what the Church teaches.
P: So, you just give your mind over to the Catholics to make moral decisions for you?
C: Did you personally discover the law of thermodynamics or that smoking cigarettes is bad for you? Did you invent the alphabet? Since you didn’t why did you just give your mind over to your teachers who taught you this? 

P: That’s stupid. I’m talking about moral opinions. Those things you referred to are facts, they are provable. 
C: Spiritual truths are provable just like scientific laws. They have to be tested and retested and stand the scrutiny of time without changing--that what makes it a law instead of a theory. For 2000 years, the Catholic church has done that. 
P: I don’t know what you are talking about.... what “testing’ have they done?”
C: Not testing like in a lab, but observing that God’s laws really do have study-able results. Lying, cheating, adultery, disrespect of parents do have bad consequences on one’s life.
P: So what if I don’t trust the Catholic Church’s “scientific” views. The Holy Spirit uses my own brain and scripture to figure out truths for myself? 
C: I didn’t look inside my heart to discover how to read, nor to discover E=MC² or to believe men actually stepped upon the moon. When I am sick I do not diagnose, prescribe and treat my own illnesses. Like you, I believed the experts who taught me. 

So, when it comes to spiritual truths, I listen to the hundreds of brilliant theological experts within the 2000 years of Catholic history that had incredibly spiritual insights. Why shouldn’t I draw from them the treasure of their spiritual illumination? And, like them, defer my opinion to the Church?
P: Sounds very dangerously gullible. 
C: No more gullible than believing smoking hurts our lungs because the experts say so. My understanding, my interpretation, even my conscience is fallible. So, I look to experts outside of myself and the Bible to find truth. You also do it as a Protestant when you go to church and listen to your preacher and when you read inspirational books--like Rick Warren's Purpose Driven Life, the Left Behind Series, anything by Billy Graham or Joel Osteen.

I think it is just as dangerously gullible to believe that you can come to truth without any outside teaching.

P: But that isn't Biblical.... We get truth from the Spirit.... John 16:13...

C: Then you don't need the Bible at all, do you? Or church, or other books or anyone but yourself--that is not Biblical!  I Timothy 3:15.