So, last night I had a Bible study with a Protestant from my former denomination, the Church of Christ Non-Institutional. It went fairly well, although kind of heated (not screaming or anything). I think only two points were impressed upon him, which I will talk about here.
The NI CoC believes that you cannot use money from the Church treasury to help non-Christians. This belief is based off their understanding of passages that say "collection for the needy saints". "needy saints" limits them from giving to non-saints. The problem that lies here is that they use this "collection for the needy saints" for all kinds of other uses, buildings, lawn mowers, gasoline, televisions, bibles. While these things are important (and obviously I think we can buy them), no one would argue that is under the term needy saints as Paul uses it. Instead, they are using extra-Biblical tradition to argue these things are "expedients to worship". I think that point bugged him quite substantially.
Secondly, he admitted that he could tell that we still had a love for the people we used to know. That meant a lot to us because we were slandered pretty heavily after leaving.
He definitely could not fathom the idea of the real presence of Christ and some of his off the cuff comments (which I know he did out of ignorance) about the blessed sacrament were what caused me to get a little overworked at times.
One of my favorite discussions was on Sola Scriptura where I asked him how he knew which books were part of inspired scripture. As for the Old Testament, he looks at Jewish oral tradition (ironic). As for the New Testament, he knows Paul's writings are inspired because Peter said so (VERY ironic), but he wasn't sure why he had faith that Peter's writings were inspired.....I hope he thinks about it some more.
He indicated that he would read "Christ in His Fullness" by Bruce Sullivan. Let's pray that he does. All in all, it was fairly a positive discussion.
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