I debated John Martignoni on whether the Catholic or Protestant Bible is the true one?
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What Was the Debate About Exactly?
Catholics have 73 books in their Bible.
Protestants have 66 books.
The difference underscores the fundamental question of who, if anyone, has authority and divine guidance in discerning which books the Holy Spirit inspired.
That’s what our debate centered on.
I put on my former Protestant hat for the debate and argued, as did John Calvin, that the books of the Bible are self-authenticating.
That means that, because God inspired them, they have a quality that no other books have, and since the Holy Spirit dwells within each Christian, the Spirit testifies in our hearts to which books He inspired.
John argued the Catholic position, that Protestants stole from Catholic Tradition (which they ostensibly reject as false) in order to even come up with the 66 books they do accept, but this is arbitrary since they think the early Christians went off the rails on numerous doctrines (the Eucharist, infant baptism, the Mass, sacraments, and so on).
Why Is the Canon of Scripture Important?
This came out in the debate. Since Protestants believe in sola Scriptura, that the Bible alone is the sole infallible rule of faith, they absolutely must know which books belong in the Bible.
And to know which books belong in the Bible, they must be able to offer a principled reason for why they accept the books they do and how they came up with the criteria for them.
As John demonstrated in the debate, in fact all Protestants have is their opinion on what they think the Holy Spirit is telling them. That way leads to chaos and cannot be the way God designed things. Further, it is not how the early Church operated.
I tried to argue that God wanted us to have something written down because traditions could be corrupted, but John countered that God can preserve both written and oral works from error.
It was a lively debate! You can watch it for free anytime by registering below:
Finally, at the end of the debate I offer anyone who watches it a discount on my Proven Catholic video course and ebook. You can get that deal here.