Monday, May 28, 2012

Debate with a Protestant on Aspects of my Book, 100 Biblical Arguments Against Sola Scriptura, Whether Mary is Referred to in Revelation 12, and Peter and Paul

 
This was on a public Facebook discussion thread on my friend Mary Patsy John's Facebook page, underneath mention of a review of the above book of mine by Devin Rose. Greg Still describes himself as a ""skeptical Pentecostal" and is a former Catholic. His words will be in blue. A few things are not included here because I didn't have time to reply to them, but you can read everyone's full comments in the initial thread (if you are on Facebook).

* * *

I have a Lutheran "friend" who insists that The Church (meaning his church) is the ultimate interpreter of scripture. He thinks that an individual cannot properly read/understand scripture without the aid of The Church and its creeds.

Oddly, he also believes in Sola Scriptura. (He cannot be accused of being consistent)

This is perfectly consistent. Most Protestants don't deny the usefulness; even necessity of the Church and creeds. They only deny that any church or tradition is infallible. Only the Bible is that. This is what sola Scriptura means: "the Bible is the only infallible and final authority." But of course in practice that means: "I am the final authority, since I ultimately interpret the infallible Bible as I see fit and can dissent against any church if necessary to preserve truth as I see it." That is filled with difficulties and self-contradictions, as I show in my book.

Luther himself appealed to Church tradition and authority. The only problem is that he reserved the right to disagree with what the Church says. Protestantism is always [in the final analysis] a self-defeating proposition, in terms of authority, anyway you slice it.

I simply asked, "Which Church?" In reply he answered, "The one that follows the Bible most correctly".

"Uh huh, and how will I know which Church follows the Bible most correctly if I am not able to read and understand it for myself?"

He never has answered this adequately, insisting that the individual cannot interpret scripture without the aid of "the Church".
____________

When dealing with Tradition, I must point out that the RCC uses " bait and switch". Yes, the Bible speaks of the "traditions" of the apostles and elders. But the RCC adds to these the accumulated traditions of 2000 years, some of which I find to be simply distracting, and some I find to be anti-biblical.

So here's the "rub". Someone might respond to this post attempting to use the Bible to prove that the traditions of the RCC are reliable reflections of apostolic faith. They will expect me, an individual, to be able to discern from scripture the truth of the RCC - which brings us back to the same argument - whether or not an individual can discern from scripture which teachings and/or traditions are an accurate reflection of apostolic doctrine.

We do, after all, have the words of the Apostles. It seems that their letters should be given the most weight over any ecclesiastical tradition.


Lots of issues here I don't have time [at the moment] to delve into fully. My specialty is "biblical evidence for Catholicism" and I have writings on my blog (almost 2500 posts) about all the major bones of contention. Nothing is "anti-biblical."

For example, Mary's Assumption is not directly asserted in Scripture. Yet it is not contrary to anything in Scripture, and indeed there are parallels in some respects: Enoch being translated to heaven; Elijah going to heaven in a chariot, Apostle Paul being taken up to the third heaven; possibly in body. In other words, an assumption (or a bodily resurrection after death) is entirely possible and consistent with what we know in Scripture.

But sola Scriptura is directly contradicted in Scripture, and there are things (like the canon of Scripture) that are not present in the Bible at all. Zip, zero, zilch, nada.

Strictly speaking, this book of mine is not doing "biblical evidence for Catholicism". Rather, it is critiquing one of the pillars of Protestantism: sola Scriptura, and showing how it is not biblical. I make reference to tradition and so forth, but within this larger context and purpose. Several other books of mine show how Catholic tradition is completely harmonious with, and usually (not always) directly or explicitly supported by the Bible.

In other words, this book is saying, "we don't believe your system of
sola Scriptura because it is unbiblical, and we're showing you why." It's purpose is not, "we believe in x, y, z Catholic doctrines because of biblical passages a, b, c, etc." Other books of mine do the latter.


The irony of your book is that you use the Bible as your ultimate authority to defend the Catholic teaching that the Church, not the Bible, is the ultimate authority.

Do you see the problem here?

 
Yes: in your comment, which is neither factual, nor logical. First of all, I'm not using the Bible as the "ultimate authority"; only as an authority that Protestants and Catholics agree upon. It is smart in dialogue to start with a common premise and then move on to disagreements. I do that here, and often elsewhere. I show that the Bible does not teach sola Scriptura. I could do that if I were an atheist. My own beliefs have no necessary connection to the logic of that at all. I could argue that "the Koran doesn't teach that elephants fly through the air." To say that shows nothing [necessarily] about what I believe.

Nor is "Catholic teaching" what might be called sola ecclesia. It is not at all. Our view is that Bible-Church-Tradition are all of a piece: a "three-legged stool" of authority. But the Bible is inspired, whereas Church and tradition are infallible, so in that sense the Bible is "higher"; but in terms of authority all three are in play, and harmonious. You simply miscomprehend the Catholic view of the Bible and authority. You're not alone; many millions do so.

I was raised Catholic - went to parochial school, and considered being a priest. Sorry, but I know Catholicism, and it cannot be supported Biblically. It must rely on the supposed "authority" or "infallibility" of the Church.

 
Sorry, you clearly don't: at least not in these respects, because you have made a number of factual errors. Of course it can be supported biblically. I show that again and again in my writings. Not only can it be shown, but it can be demonstrated that Catholicism is far more in harmony with all of Scripture than any form of Protestantism.

May I post this discussion on my blog? I can do so with or without your name.


The whole "authority/infallibility" argument fails with two words, WHICH CHURCH?

 
I agree that one must ask "which Church is the one true Church mentioned in the Bible?" We can demonstrate that the Catholic Church goes historically back to Christ, and has consistently espoused true Christian doctrine. We're the ones who keep apostolic morality: things like no divorce and no contraception. No other major body has done so. If you want apostolic morality and doctrine, you have one choice. That's a major reason why I became a Catholic, by the way. I was sick of Protestant compromise on crucial moral issues.

Since you brought up the supposed "Assumption of Mary" 

[comment added now: I brought it up merely in passing, after having already stated that I was busy; never intending to have a complete discussion on a side issue to the main topic]

let us deal with that. You suggest that because a thing did happen to others (Enoch, Elijah etcetera) that it could have happened to Mary. That's a poor argument for the idea that Mary was assumed.

Angels came down many times in the O.T. and a couple of times in the NT. Should we then say that Moroni visited Joseph Smith?

Certainly, if Mary had been assumed, the Bible would have mentioned something about it - for it would have occurred during the apostolic era. And if the Apostles wanted the saints to "venerate" her, they would have mentioned SOMETHING about it? But, no. Catholic apologists take a few words that Jesus spoke to John on the cross, "behold thy mother", and add to it a dumpster-full of tradition. 


Like I said, I am busy today and don't even have time for this. Now we're off on the rabbit trails of Mary and the pope, so you can avoid the bottom-line issue and subject of my book: the falsity of sola Scriptura.

Briefly: the Bible does mention the "woman clothed with the sun" in heaven (Rev. 12:1). Her child is clearly Jesus (Rev 12:5). Doesn't take a rocket science to figure out that this is Mary, and she is portrayed in quite a glorious state in heaven. If you want more Catholic perspectives on this (and Mary as mediatrix and intercessor and spiritual mother), see my Blessed Virgin Mary web page.


Did the apostles ever pray the rosary? Where did that arise? Did they even ONE TIME adocate [sic] prayers to Mary? Yet millions of Catholics are trusting these prayers to be efficacious and meritorious.
 
Nice try at bringing in a million different topics at once. Classic tactics used against Catholics all the time. It doesn't work with me. I never get diverted from the topic (esp. not if I am already busy with something else). I've written about all this stuff. If you are serious about hearing the Catholic side, the papers are there for you. But the scattershot approach to discussion suggests a lack of seriousness to me. 

[nevertheless I deal with Mary and Revelation 12 at some length below because he would not cease discussing Mariology]

Asking saints to intercede is dealt with on my Saints, Purgatory, and Penance page.

Or let us address your argument (in your book) that Peter had authority over Paul at the Jerusalem council.

It NEVER says anything like that. This is made of whole cloth. Both Peter and Paul gave testimony, but it was James who stood and gave the final word, not Peter.


You want to bring up one of the arguments in my book. Very well, then. Rather than cynically portray what I said, and denying it with no substance, let's let readers see what I actually wrote. Here is the entire argument #74 (a few minor differences from the book since this is from my last manuscript):

74. Paul’s Apostolic Calling Was Subordinated to the Larger Church and Was in Harmony with Peter


Paul’s ministry was not “self-validating.” He was initially commissioned by Peter, James, and John (Gal 2:9) to preach to the Gentiles. After his conversion, he went to Jerusalem specifically to see Peter (Gal 1:18). In Acts 15:2-3 we are told that “Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders about this question. So, being sent their way by the church,” they went off on their assignment.


That is hardly consistent with the idea of Paul being the “pope” or leading figure in the hierarchy of authority; he was directed by others, as one under orders. When we see Paul and Peter together in the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15:6-29), we observe that Peter wields an authority that Paul doesn’t possess.

We learn that “after there was much debate, Peter rose” to address the assembly (15:7). The Bible records his speech, which goes on for five verses. Then it reports that “all the assembly kept silence” (15:12). Paul and Barnabas speak next, not making authoritative pronouncements, but confirming Peter’s exposition, speaking about “signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles” (15:12). Then when James speaks, he refers right back to what “Simeon [Peter] has related” (15:14). Why did James skip right over Paul’s comments and go back to what Peter said? Paul and his associates are subsequently “sent off” by the Council, and they “delivered the letter” (15:30; cf. 16:4).


None of this seems consistent with the notion that Paul was above or even equal to Peter in authority. But it’s perfectly consistent with Peter’s having a preeminent authority. Paul was under the authority of the council, and Peter (along with James, as the Bishop of Jerusalem) presided over it. Paul and Barnabas were sent by “the church” (of Antioch: see 14:26). Then they were sent by the Jerusalem Council (15:25, 30) which was guided by the Holy Spirit (15:28), back to Antioch (15:30).

You make bald statements of denial; I make solid biblical arguments.

You, of course, know that Paul withstood Peter to his face for his hypocrisy on this very issue. Obviously Paul did not recognize Peter as having "papal" authority over him.

The Peter vs. Paul hypocrisy argument proves nothing because it is irrelevant (hypocrisy being distinct from authority). A person can have full authority and be a flaming hypocrite. For example, Republican ads against President Obama show him to be a hypocrite in a number of ways regarding what he has promised and what he has done. Assuming their correctness, they show he is a hypocrite, but they have no effect on his authority. He remains the President, and has that authority till we boot him out in November. apples and oranges. See my paper on the topic.

I note in this paper that Jesus upheld the authority of the Pharisees, even though they were hypocrites (Matthew 23:2). This flimsy, misguided objection proves nothing whatever regarding Peter's primacy or supposed lack thereof.

I asked if I could post your words in this dialogue on my blog? It is already public here, but it is a courtesy to ask. . . .
If you don't reply, I will assume it is okay to post the dialogue on my blog. I will post everything you say except for your last long reply, because I don't have time to reply to all that, and a dialogue includes both sides.

Lastly: is the Catholic Church a Christian organization? Or is Catholic theology in its entirety to be defined as not Christian? I no longer debate anti-Catholics (those who deny the first thing and assert the second) as a matter of policy.

[both of these questions were ignored]

Certainly, if Mary had been assumed, the Bible would have mentioned something about it.

By Protestant reasoning, "certainly, if sola Scriptura were true, the Bible would have mentioned something about it". But it never does, which is the topic of my book. That doesn't stop Protestants from making an entirely non-biblical, anti-biblical concept the very foundation and bedrock and pillar of their authority structure. They do it anyway. Then, having done that, they demand that we adopt the same illogical reasoning with regard to Catholic distinctives like Mary's Assumption.

We never claimed that absolutely everything has to be explicitly laid out in Scripture, precisely because the Bible never teaches this. That is your game, and thus your burden to defend, not ours.

Your statement above is classic. You believe this firmly, yet the Bible never states such a thing. Thus, you supposedly appeal to the Bible itself with a completely non-biblical idea that can't be found there. Then you try to bind Catholics to this silly notion: so now you are arbitrarily applying an arbitrary tradition of men to us, as if we have to play by those rules . . . We think logically and biblically, so no dice!


I am not the one bringing up different issues. You have brought up Mary and Peter as defences of Catholicism. I have responded to them.

I never said Paul was Pope. Where did you get that?? I said Paul never recognized Peter as pope.

By the way - Even in Catholic circles the identity of the Woman of Rev. 12 has been in dispute.
___

From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
It is true that commentators generally understand the whole passage as applying literally to the Church, and that part of the verses is better suited to the Church than to Mary. But it must be kept in mind that Mary is both a figure of the Church, and its most prominent member. What is said of the Church, is in its own way true of Mary. Hence the passage of the Apocalypse (12:5-6) does not refer to Mary merely by way of accommodation [108], but applies to her in a truly literal sense which appears to be partly limited to her, and partly extended to the whole Church. Mary's relation to the Church is well summed up in the expression "collum corporis mystici" applied to Our Lady by St. Bernardin of Siena. [109]

Cardinal Newman [110] considers two difficulties against the foregoing interpretation of the vision of the woman and child: first, it is said to be poorly supported by the Fathers; secondly, it is an anachronism to ascribe such a picture of the Madonna to the apostolic age.
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I note that Cardinal Newman recognizes that the Madonna figure is an "anachronism" to the apostolic age. That is, the apostles never regarded Mary as a "Madonna".
______________

I do not have a copy of the Confraternity version with me at present, but I do distinctly recall reading the footnotes of it regarding Rev 12. The writer said that the application to Mary was "useful" but that the Woman represented the church.
____________

Personally I think the Woman represents the Church at the last age, and the "manchild" represents a certain group within her who, like Christ and with Christ, will rule the world with a rod of iron.

The fact that the woman has "other children" indicates that this is not speaking of a "Virgin Mary". (Rev 12:17)


You just plan to keep going on, huh (knowing I am busy)?

I must respond to a few things, at least. Yes; in past treatments of the topic I have taken the view that the passage has a dual application: to Mary and the Church (and Mary as a figure of the Church). That is quite common in Scripture. I did this in my first book, which was completed 16 years ago this month, so that is nothing new with me.

However, the part specifically about giving birth to the child (who is Christ) must be about Mary, I contend, if it is about Christ, because Jesus was not a product of the Church, since He preceded it and initiated it. Therefore, that part is specifically talking about Mary. The Bible never uses a terminology of Jesus being a "child" (Rev 12:5) of the Church. He is the child of God the Father (His Divine Nature) and of Mary (as a person with both a Divine and human nature). The Church is "of Christ"; Christ is not "of the Church"; let alone its "child." Those categories are biblically ludicrous and indeed almost blasphemous.

Your interpretation of "male child" is incoherent. "Rule all nations with a rod of iron" is clearly hearkening back to the messianic passage Psalm 2:7-9, which is again reflected in Rev 19:15 (absolutely about Jesus). It's true that there is a secondary application along your lines in Rev 2:27, but you still have to deal with the phrase "caught up to God and to his throne" (Rev 12:5; RSV). That can't mean "the twelve thrones" referred to in Matt 19:18 (cf. Lk 22:30; Rev 4:4; 11:16) because it says "his [i.e., God's] throne." Only Jesus is connected directly with that, because He is God.

And so we see Jesus (unlike any created men) sitting on God's throne (Matt 19:28; 25:31; Heb 1:8; Rev 7:17; 22:1, 3).

Therefore, this proves that Rev 12:5 is referring to Jesus alone, and thus, His mother in this particular passage must be Mary, since it cannot be the Church, per the reasoning above. Other parts of the entire passage also have an application to the Church, as the Catholic Church continues to teach today.

You want to bring up Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman. Bad choice, since he was my main theological influence in becoming a Catholic; I've had a large web page about him for 15 years, and a 448-page book of his quotations coming out in a few weeks (I mentioned it this very day on my Facebook page). In my first book, A Biblical Defense of Catholicism (p. 200), I cited his words from 1875 ("Letter to Pusey"):

What I would maintain is this, that the Holy Apostle would not have spoken of the Church under this particular image, unless there had existed a blessed Virgin Mary, who was exalted on high and the object of veneration to all the faithful. No one doubts that the 'man-child' spoken of is an allusion to our Lord; why then is not 'the Woman' an allusion to his mother?

Exactly! And precisely as I argue . . .

Revelation 12:17 is no problem since it can either be an instance of the dual meaning of "Church" or Mary as a spiritual mother in a different sense (tying into the same John at the cross receiving Mary as his "mother"). We accept the dual application. It is you who are denying the Marian application, which doesn't fly in light of the exegesis and cross-referencing that I have shown you.

And if it is Mary in this passage (as well as the Church), then we have an indication of both her veneration and glorification in heaven, akin to the Assumption (whereas you claimed there was nothing in Scripture at all about it: as if the Assumption were solely an arbitrary tradition of men, like sola Scriptura is :-).




I never said "absolutely everything has to be explicitly laid out in scripture". This is a straw man. 



Is that so? You stated:

"Certainly, if Mary had been assumed, the Bible would have mentioned something about it - for it would have occurred during the apostolic era. And if the Apostles wanted the saints to "venerate" her, they would have mentioned SOMETHING about it?"

BUT if there is a MAJOR DOCTRINE of the church, then the scriptures must surely say SOMETHING about it. 
 
Yes, and I showed that it does: by analogy (Enoch, Elijah, and Paul's experience in the second heaven), and the data of Revelation 12, just discussed. Therefore I have demonstrated "SOMETHING about it." You just disagree (on inadequate grounds). I showed implicit grounds, which is what you want, since you deny that you require explicit grounds. Therefore, I succeeded in my task, according to your challenge. I provided what you asked for. It continues to be the case, on the other hand, that sola Scriptura is entirely absent from the Bible and massively contradicted in it at every turn. So you hang by your own false premise, whereas we are not harmed at all by it because we reject it as unscriptural in the first place.

Moreover, you made the statement (referring to biblical proof):

"Did the apostles ever pray the rosary? Where did that arise? Did they even ONE TIME adocate prayers to Mary?"

I have papers about the Rosary (one / two) and intercession of the saints, too, showing that there is nothing contrary to Scripture in these practices.

For the last time, I have to do other things (I've already taken up another 75 minutes), so I can't answer your typical laundry list of 1001 Protestant objections. But I have dealt with all of them in various papers and books, including a book about Mary that I will send you in a message (pdf).

God bless,

Dave



***

12 comments:

Maroun said...

Hi Greg .
As an ex Catholic as you claimed you are , you are very confused about so many things . And what you claim the Church teaches is not what the Church teaches but what you wrongly believe the Church teaches .
Now can i suggest a book for you to read please which will clarify so many things for you ? the book is called , the Catholic controversy , written by saint Francis De Sales. And please do not just read a few pages and then stop and begin to criticize , but please read the whole book and i guarantee you`ll be more than satisfied .
By the way , you can read the book on the internet for free if you don`t want to buy it , but i truly suggest that you do . And i promise you , that you will not regret it .
The reason why i am suggesting this book , is because Dave already told you that he is very busy and that he does not have time to answer all of your questions . GOD BLESS YOU
Please read the book

Dave Armstrong said...

Hi Maroun,

You may wanna post on the original Facebook thread (link at the top), or Greg may possibly never see your comment.

justaguy said...

It always puzzles me when Protestants are quick to dismiss Peter's primacy. Do they merely throw out the window antiquities and other various archeological evidence?

The Little Labyrinth
"Victor . . . was the thirteenth bishop of Rome from Peter" (The Little Labyrinth [A.D. 211], in Eusebius, Church History 5:28:3).

Cyprian of Carthage
"There is one God and one Christ, and one Church, and one chair founded on Peter by the word of the Lord. It is not possible to set up another altar or for there to be another priesthood besides that one altar and that one priesthood. Whoever has gathered elsewhere is scattering" (Letters 43[40]:5 [A.D. 253]).

Tertullian
"Was anything withheld from the knowledge of Peter, who is called ‘the rock on which the Church would be built’ [Matt. 16:18] with the power of ‘loosing and binding in heaven and on earth’ [Matt. 16:19]?" (Demurrer Against the Heretics 22 [A.D. 200]).

survivingsainthood said...

Hi. I have a question. I'm baptist and I have always been taught that the woman mentioned in Rev that gave birth to the child was referring to Israel giving birth to Jesus. I am new to your site and find it fascinating what I'm reading. Can you elaborate or post a link for me in understanding the Catholic's position on the woman being Mary mother of Jesus? Thank you and G-d bless.
Michelle

Dave Armstrong said...

Hi Michelle,

Thanks for your question. I actually dealt with the issue you raise in this very post.

Traditionally, the passage has been given a dual interpretation of referring both to Mary and the Church. In some parts it makes no sense (so I argue above) to use the Church interpretation, and it is more plausible to apply it to Mary.

survivingsainthood said...

Thank you Dave for your reply. I wasn't referring to the church. I was actually referring to Israel as a nation. Right now as a whole, the state of Israel is out of covenant with G-d because they rejected His son, Jesus. I am of the belief that G-s is not finished with Israel and upon Christ's return they will repent. "And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son." I commented something similar on a different post of yours. I am new to this site and couldn't recall which post I had posted on so I apologize if you find this on a different post. I found your Judaism page so I will read over those. Thanks!

Zambedos said...

Dave, regarding Michelle's question, I don't think you've answered it. I understand (minimally) the idea of dual interpretation for Mary and the Church, and that's fine. But then there is the protestant interpretation that the woman is Israel, and that Israel as a people gave birth to Christ in the sense that He came from an Israelite bloodline. You are right to say that the Church could not had produced Christ because Christ predated the Church, however this same line of reasoning does not contradict Michelle's idea since Israel did exist before Christ's birth. This is something I have been wondering about as well.

If I may attempt to solve my own question, none of this may matter in the sense that the Church consists of Israel and those grafted into Israel. By virtue of this grafting the Church is Israel. At this point claiming that the woman is Israel or the Church amounts to about the same thing, and we resume with our dual interpretation. Not sure if that's correct or even logical, but I am tired so I'm hitting enter.

Dave Armstrong said...

That sounds plausible to me, sure. I don't think it overthrows my overall point, because it remains a "dual" or "both/and" view. The problem comes with making it "either/or" and excluding the Marian aspects of it altogether.

Maroun said...

Hi Zambedos.
If the woman is Israel,(and i`m not going to say she is or isn`t ) i`m just saying that if the woman is Israel,then what`s the meaning of the rest of thevers ? Rev. 12:13-17 ? When the dragon saw that it had been thrown down to the earth, it pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child.
But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle, so that she could fly to her place in the desert, where, far from the serpent, she was taken care of for a year, two years, and a half-year.
The serpent, however, spewed a torrent of water out of his mouth after the woman to sweep her away with the current.
But the earth helped the woman and opened its mouth and swallowed the flood that the dragon spewed out of its mouth.
Then the dragon became angry with the woman and went off to wage war against the rest of her offspring, those who keep God's commandments and bear witness to Jesus. It took its position on the sand of the sea.
I mean how could these verses and these words concern Israel?Now i can understand that the woman could be all three (Israel,the blessed virgin Mary and the Church ) intermingled together . But to say that the woman is only Israel,then i must humbly disagree .
One last point , was not Israel called the son of God? where does the woman thing comes from ? and woman means the mother of all the living,Eve by whom death entered the world and the new Eve,the new woman (the blessed virgin Mary ) through whom life came into the world (our Lord Jesus Christ ) . I could be wrong and i humbly accept to be criticized . Thank you and God bless you .

survivingsainthood said...

Well, at least we agree that the woman is not the church. The Church did not replace Israel. Sometime in the future Israel will receive her blessings promised. Again, as far as the symbolism goes, it was my understanding that the sun represented Jacob, the moon represented Rachel and the 12 stars represented the twelve tribes of Israel. It's plausible that during an end time event, a remnant of Israel (the woman) would flee into the wilderness for the 1,260 days and so on. In my humble opinion, it's very easy to dismiss Israel when one has determined in his or her mind that G-d divorced her and that the blessings no longer apply. I only bring up the Israel point to say that I believe it's just as plausible as Mary. If one believes that G-d did indeed divorce Israel and that He is finished with modern day Israel then my point of adding Israel to the list of possibilities would be moot. As far as the woman being Mary, I'm researching it so I cannot give an opinion as this is new to me.
Michelle

survivingsainthood said...

I just want to quickly add that I by no means wish to argue. I am a Christian who has long term affiliation with Southern Baptists. Without going into great detail, I will say that I am searching. I came across this website not too long ago and the content provided has challenged me on my views. I feel safe enough to comment here as I find this whole thing quite fascinating. I am enjoying reading others comments and thoughts. I'm just here to learn. :)
Michelle

Dave Armstrong said...

Well, you are welcome to comment here anytime, Michelle, and you'll be treated with respect and Christian courtesy.

God bless and have a great day!