Dave Armstrong, a well-known Roman Catholic apologist has challenged the present author to debate the topic of "Is Catholicism Christian?" and/or "What is Christianity?" (link to challenge)
I wonder what my readers (Catholic or non-Catholic) think about whether I should accept.
Frankly, I'm not sure that the discussion would really qualify as a debate, because questions are not resolutions. But that's just a formal matter, that perhaps Dave could accomodate by providing a resolution such as: "Resolved: Catholicism today is at least part of the Christian religion."
Assuming that some mutually acceptable resolution could be found (either for me or Dave to affirm), what do my readers think of the idea?
In a multitude of counsellors there is wisdom.
Dave, thanks for the invitation, I'm mulling it over.
UPDATE (25 October 2007):
Dave has suggested:
"Resolved: the Catholic Church (led by the pope) is Not Properly Classifiable as Christian."
"Resolved: Only (Some Species of) Protestantism Can Be Properly Regarded as 'Christian'".
(with, one would think, the latter resolution being interpreted to mean that the only thing that can properly be regarded as Christian is some particular species of Protestantism, to the exclusion both of other species of Protestantism and all non-Protestantism)
Obviously, those would be resolutions for the present author to affirm, and Dave would take the negative position.
Thanks to Dave for these suggestions, which should make the issue much more concrete.
Neither of the resolutions appears to require my asserting that all Roman Catholics are necessarily unsaved, or that Roman Catholicism is not classifiable as Christian in some sense (after all, the RCC claims to be a (and perhaps "the") Christian church). Instead, the resolutions appear to relate to the proper (i.e. technical) definition of "Christian."
Obviously, as well, one would assume that the question is phrased from the standpoint of things the way they are now, not 100 years ago, or 200 years ago, or 500 years ago, or 1000 year ago, or even 1950 years ago.
Second UPDATE (same day):
Dave has provided some further clarification (his words, not mine, and not adopted by my quoting them):
"If one can't be saved by adhering to what the Catholic Church teaches (about Jesus, faith, the way of salvation, the sacraments, etc.), then obviously it isn't Christian."