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Mike Frost wrote:

Hi, guys —

I have come across a Protestant saying that all Catholic miracles are false signs and wonders described in the book of 2 Thessalonians.

  • How would I respond to this?

Mike Frost

  { How would I reply to a Protestant view, that Catholic miracles are false signs as noted in 2 Thessalonians? }

Eric replied:

Mike —

I have thought about this claim over the years, and it seems to me it's the least ineffective refutation of Catholicism. From the perspective of a dyed-in-the-wool Protestant, yes, the best explanation for Catholic miracles are Satanic delusions. It's hard to argue with that kind of twisted logic. However, there may be something we can work with.

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 (RSV2CE) says:

9 The coming of the lawless one by the activity of Satan will be with all power and with pretended signs and wonders, 10 and with all wicked deception for those who are to perish, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 Therefore, God sends upon them a strong delusion, to make them believe what is false, 12 so that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 (RSV2CE)

Note that it says, "had pleasure in unrighteousness", and that it doesn't specify the details of the signs and wonders, except to say that those who followed them had pleasure in unrighteousness. One could argue (probably weakly from the perspective of the radical Protestant who would take the position that Catholic miracles are Satanic) that Catholic miracles have led people, not to unrighteousness, but to righteousness, that is, doing what is good. Jesus said, you shall know a tree by its fruits. If miracles lead people to do good, and to believe in Jesus Christ and proclaim him as Lord, they cannot be Satanic.

Of course, the Protestant would likely just counter that the miracles lead people deeper into Catholicism, which they would probably view as fundamentally "unrighteous" by definition. That's begging the question, but good luck getting them to admit that.

You have to ask the question whether it is worthwhile to cast your pearls before swine with people who are so far gone that they would view a Catholic miracle ipso facto as a Satanic delusion.

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
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