This is the 10th debate in the Great Debate series covering the topic of whether or not a non-Christian can enter Heaven. In this debate, Dr. White takes the negative whereas Bill Rutland takes the positive side. This is certainly one of the more gentlemanly debates with both sides behaving in a cordial manner towards one another. The focus of the debate are two sections of the Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church, namely, sections 841 and 1260. Both sections describe how non-Christians may enter Heaven. To be honest, Mr. Rutland has an indefensible issue because he had to prove that these sections in the Roman Catholic catechism are, in fact, apostolic teaching. You will note an almost universal salvation theme crop up in the debate, and the notion that there will be those who are saved outside of Christ. This debate exposes another error in Rome’s soteriology-in addition to her errors regarding justification, sanctification, purgatory, and the concept of the free will of man, sections 841 and 1260 also present a sort of ‘back door’ into Heaven. It is also interesting to note that Mr. Rutland repeatedly tried to bring up those who die in infancy and those who are mentally incapacitated as a defense of sections 841 and 1260. However, those subjects are described in section 1261 of the Roman Catholic catechism.
Alpha and Omega Ministries is a Christian apologetics organization based in Phoenix, Arizona. James White, director, is a professor, having taught Greek, Systematic Theology, and various topics in the field of apologetics for numerous schools.