Hi to all my Forum Friends,
Yesterday, I posted my article "Should Roman Catholics Participate In Non-Denominational Bible Studies?" on both Facebook and the TimesDaily Religion Forum, and I sent it to my Friends Ministry Friend.
Right away, a Roman Catholic Friend on the TimesDaily Religion Forum posted an even longer rambling post in that discussion, which had nothing whatsoever to do with the proposed subject. His post began:
READ THIS.... Do you think the omens of mega-bestsellers“The Harbinger” and “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” are all history at this point?
Think again. The most interesting times are ahead, according to “Blood Moons” author Mark Biltz and Jonathan Cahn, the messianic rabbi who riveted the world with his teachings about “harbingers” of things to come for America based on biblical patterns he discovered. (Bill note: much text deleted)
AND THIS...........AND MORE COULD COME.....................
In other words, rather than have a constructive dialogue, pro or con -- he chose to hijack the discussion in an attempt to keep others from reading and responding to what I had written. When I decided to share the post below, I had no idea he had done this. Yet, comically, his discussion hijack ties in perfectly with what is written in my new post shown below:
Below is a current dialogue between a Roman Catholic Friend and me. As you can see, we can have a dialogue, even disagree with one another -- and still remain civil and remain Friends. Matter of fact, she and I have been both e-mail and Facebook Friends since we met in a discussion of the Mel Gibson movie "Passion Of The Christ" years ago.
If you will notice, she has even SHARED my initial Facebook Note "Should Roman Catholics Participate In Non-Denominational Bible Studies?" with her other Friends.
My question: "Why can't my Roman Catholic Friends on the Religion Forum and I have the same kind of civil and constructive discussions?" I am willing, are you?
Facebook Notes dialogue:
Andrea: Hi Bill! I'm glad to see that subjects that I post on my Timeline spark dialog between many Christians. In fact, I liked and shared this status! Fellowship between Non-Catholics and Catholics is a good and holy thing.
However, when people join Bible studies for the wrong reasons, i.e.: to argue and seek converts, that is where the Non-Catholics and Catholics should not be studying God's Word together. On the other hand, when a Catholic, who does not know the Catholic faith well, cannot and should not be studying with Non-Catholics -- for the primary reason that he or she cannot be a proper witness - or dare I say, give testimony - for and about his or her Catholic faith.
Just curious here: would a Non-Catholic join a Catholic Bible study? Personally, I have not met a single Non-Catholic in any of my Bible studies at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church - Savage, MN. Not even when we studied with Jeff Cavins (who used to be a Baptist preacher before he returned to the Catholic faith. His testimony is in the book "My Life On The Rock: A Rebel Returns To The Catholic Church," if you want to know (John 6 was a big influence on his decision). Anyway, thanks for the post Bill and God Bless! 5 hours ago · Like · 1
Bill Gray: Hi Andrea, Yes and no.
Yes, when you say, "However, when people join Bible studies for the wrong reasons, i.e.: to argue and seek converts,. . ." I agree that the reason we go to Bible study is NOT to convert others in that study -- but to expand our own knowledge of God's Word, which will prepare us for the times we do go into an evangelism mode.
No, when you say, "On the other hand, when a Catholic, who does not know the Catholic faith well, cannot and should not be studying with Non-Catholics for the primary reason that he or she cannot be a proper witness - or dare I say, give testimony - for and about his or her Catholic faith."
In this last statement, you are contradicting your earlier statement -- no proselytizing. Neither the Protestant nor the Roman Catholic should be in the Bible Study to convert others -- but, rather to grow in knowledge of God's Word. THEN, if they want to meet on different ground and debate, or proselytize one another, that is productive -- if mutual. God bless, Bill 35 minutes ago · Like
Bill Gray: Andrea, I overlooked one of your statements. You wrote, "Just curious here: would a Non-Catholic join a Catholic Bible study? Personally, I have not met a single Non-Catholic in any of my Bible studies at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church - Savage, MN.
If you will look back at my initial post, you will see that when Pastor Sam was invited to lead a Bible study at the Roman Catholic church -- Dory and I went with him.
I will admit that we were curious how he would present the Gospel to them -- and if he would attempt to proselytize them. He did not, nor did we. We just had a very effective Bible study.
Would I attend a Bible study led by a Roman Catholic? Yes. Would I attempt to proselytize? No. But, I would offer input on the Gospel.
I have seen just the opposite. At one Bible study (Protestant) we attended a few years ago -- a lady brought her Roman Catholic sister. During the study, the sister began to share her views on Mary as Mother of God.
Although we were not attempting to proselytize her -- our pastor could not let her apparent attempt to proselytize us go unheeded. So, he began to politely share with her the Biblical view of Mary. She wasn't really buying it -- but, all remained cool -- until another guy jumped in and started his own version of proselytizing.
Then, everything went out the window. If he had just shut up and let our pastor talk with her, all most likely would have been well. As it turned out, sadly there were hurt feelings -- and it should not have happened.
Part of being a mature Christian -- is to know when to share -- and when to shut up. That man needed more maturing. God bless, Bill 11 minutes ago · Edited · Like · 1
This Facebook dialogue can be confirmed at: https://www.facebook.com/notes...dies/744374698942019
I believe we all can agree that such dialogues here on the TimesDaily Religion Forum could be constructive and useful. Would anyone care to try?
My Friends, whether we agree or disagree -- there is no reason we cannot have civil and constructive discussions. And, hopefully, such discussions will lead us all toa Biblical regimen of "examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so" (Acts 17:11).
God bless, have a wonderful, blessed day,