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The Messianic Drew on Catholicism-Refuted

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  • The Messianic Drew on Catholicism-Refuted

    This is the Messianic Drew, as you can probably tell, he's an anti-Catholic evangelical, and in this entry, he tries to take on the Covenant Replacement Theology of the Roman Catholic Church, however, the reasoning he employs, as I'll show here, is terribly fallacious to the extreme degree. I'll be engaging his claims by the number they're listed in the article:

    1) Well, here, he seems to have a misunderstanding, or at least, a gross simplification of how the replacement theology works. This is evident with lines such as this:

    God did not indicate in his covenant with Israel that it would end or be replaced with another, ever. He often spoke of his covenant as everlasting, with many observances that will go on forever. Examples include Exodus 12:17. "And you shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt. Therefore you shall observe this day, throughout your generations, as a statute forever."
    He seems to think that Replacement theology states that the Old Covenant has been completely destroyed, or ended, when in reality, it was simply superseded by the New Covenant, due to the obligation of the Old Covenant that, any patron of the Old Covenant must sign on to the New Covenant when it is available to them. Essentially, this means that the Old Covenant technically still exists, but was essentially superseded by the New Covenant due to the fact that you can't be following the Old Covenant, in full, without signing on to the New Covenant, so this effectively explains the passages about the Old Covenant lasting 'forever'.

    Next, the continuing existence of the Jewish people throughout the centuries and especially with the revival of the modern state of Israel refutes Replacement Theology. If Israel has been condemned by God, and there is no future for the Jewish nation, how do we explain the supernatural survival of the Jewish people over the past 2000 years despite the many attempts to destroy them? How do we explain why and how Israel reappeared as a nation in the 20th century after not existing for 1900 years?
    Alright, I usually try not to be snarky towards people who do not provoke me, but it's kind of hard when he gives reasons like this. He seems to think that God superseding the Old Covenant with the New Covenant means that he would....want to massacre all the Jews? Actually, I'm not sure what the intent of this line of reasoning was, but, even within its own context, it still fails. After the fall of Jerusalem, the Jews had almost no power whatsoever. Sometimes Medieval Kings let them live within their territories, other times, not so much, but essentially, they were on their own until the UN, a 'secular' organization, established the 'new' Israel thousands of years later, and even then, they're not really any more powerful than any other developed nation of this time.

    Not to mention, I could make the same claims about the Roman Catholic Church controlled territories, and their wars against the Ottoman Empire and the Moors, to greater effect probably, due to the fact that they essentially wanted to kill every single Christian within Christendom, which was not something the Jews faced at this time (Though I'm sure they would have, eventually, if the Muslims won.)

    Next, the New Testament clearly distinguishes the church from Israel, never using the terms interchangeably, even in letters written after Pentecost.
    Well, he doesn't substantiate this claim at all, so I can't really respond to it.

    Finally, any argument that the Roman Catholic Church has superseded or replaced Israel commits the fallacy of special pleading, and is therefore invalid. If God can replace Israel with the church, he can replace the church with someone else. There are thousands of organizations that claim to be the God-elected official teaching magisterium. Islam and Mormonism come to mind. On what consistent basis can the Roman Catholic believe that God either replaced Israel with the church or ended his covenant with Israel only to start a new one with the church, while still maintaining that God hasn't pulled the same stunt on the church, replacing Rome with someone else? Perhaps Martin Luther or John Calvin inadvertently received the divine authority?
    Once again, very hard not to be snarky. The main reason no Roman Catholic even considers this is that the Church is known to have been established by Jesus Christ himself, through his word and the New Covenant, and thus, that is how we deduce replacement theology. If God actually came down and told us that Church of Rome's purpose in the world would be replaced by the Lutheran Church, well then, that would be that, but until then, the Church of Rome it remains. So, yeah, not special pleading.

    2) No argument here, actually, this point is logically sound all the way through.

    because the Bible gives far more support for the authority of the Sanhedrin than it gives for the authority of the Roman Catholic Church.
    Yeah...the problem with this being, I don't grant this premise. No Roman Catholic does, but for the sake of argument, let's see where he's going with this.

    Virtually all of the Roman Catholic arguments for its tradition can be applied with equal force to support the tradition of the Rabbis, or at least of the Sanhedrin. Just take the argument such as "how do you know which books belong in the Bible" and apply it 50 years before the birth of Jesus. Or take the question: "Didn't the Apostles have other teachings that weren't recorded in their writings?" and apply it to Moses or to the Old Testament prophets. What's good for the Papal goose is good for the Rabbinic Gander.

    The Rabbis draw Biblical support for their authority from Deuteronomy 17:8-11
    “If any case arises requiring decision between one kind of homicide and another, one kind of legal right and another, or one kind of assault and another, any case within your towns that is too difficult for you, then you shall arise and go up to the place that the Lord your God will choose. And you shall come to the Levitical priests and to the judge who is in office in those days, and you shall consult them, and they shall declare to you the decision. Then you shall do according to what they declare to you from that place that the Lord will choose. And you shall be careful to do according to all that they direct you. According to the instructions that they give you, and according to the decision which they pronounce to you, you shall do. You shall not turn aside from the verdict that they declare to you, either to the right hand or to the left."
    Well, this is already a terrible argument, arguing that, because God provided ancient Israel with a way to infallibly resolve disputes with their Judicial system, using his guidance, it automatically transitions to and infallible magisterium. If God did the same for the Roman Catholic Church, it would not be a passage supporting Papal Supremacy, in the same way this passage does not provide support for Sanhedrin supremacy.

    Further arguments for the existence of an Oral Law and subsequent authoritative teaching magisterium are found all over the web. The convert Omedyashar has a video on 40 verifications of the Oral Torah. Tovia Singer has two lectures on the Oral Law. Dovid Gottlieb has a bunch of lectures on the subject as well. I would recommend any Roman Catholic to go check it out
    No Biblical argument made by Roman Catholic apologists comes close to the strength of these arguments for Rabbinic authority. If these passages do not give a continuing, divinely guarded, authoritative teaching magisterium, then no passage does.
    Remember when I said he gets fallacious to the extreme degree? Well, this is the 'extreme degree'. Just because a side can produce many arguments, does not mean the arguments are solid/valid/convincing/strong. Now, anyway, I'm not going to refute all of these lectures here, as we'll be here forever, but I'll link to a work that refutes the main claims to Sanhedrin supremacy:

    Still though, I needn't do such, as, by his own admission, such arguments are 'not' valid:

    I do not think that the Rabbinic arguments for an Oral Law are very convincing, nor do I believe that the Sanhedrin had anywhere near the authority that the Rabbis claim.
    However, that doesn't stop him from making this claim:

    No Biblical argument made by Roman Catholic apologists comes close to the strength of these arguments for Rabbinic authority. If these passages do not give a continuing, divinely guarded, authoritative teaching magisterium, then no passage does.
    I really don't understand. No one except for someone arguing for Sanhedrin supremacy, grants that the arguments for it are strong, even then, he doesn't justify such a claim, as he can't, because whether the arguments are 'strong' or not are purely a matter of personal opinion, it's whether they are valid or not that is the matter of fact, and by his own admission, they are not. I could just as easily make the claim that Sanhedrin supremacy fails because, even if Papal Supremacy turns out to be false, the evidence supporting it is much stronger than the evidence supporting Sanhedrin Supremacy, therefore, it must be false. Personally, I think the 'evidence' supporting Sanhedrin Supremacy is incredibly flimsy, and invalid, and doesn't even hold a candle to the evidence supporting Papal Supremacy, and, if we all used Drew's line of reasoning, that would prove Sanhedrin Supremacy false.

    Clearly this is a ridiculously fallacious line of reasoning, that is, using the premise that arguments you don't even grant as valid, somehow disproves the position being argued by other arguments that you don't grant as valid, because they are somehow 'stronger' (Whatever that means) than the latter.
    Last edited by TimelessTheist; 08-23-2014, 02:12 AM.
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