When forming a group of believers one should know there has to be place for debate and openness for discussion. At the beginning of the 20th century, they looked as follows at this matter.
How to Arrange a Debate
First, make certain that the prospective opponent is worth debating with; that is, that he is a well-known and representative man — not simply some self-seeking propagandist who only speaks for himself.
Secondly, let the Arranging Brethren of the Ecclesia select the brother who shall represent the Truth.
Thirdly, let the subject to be debated be an elementary one, with a clear and unmistakable issue.
Fourthly, let a Committee of two arrange all details with a Committee of two from “the other side”. The essential details can be best gathered from a reading of the many published debates (see cover of “The Christadelphian 99); an ounce of practical experience is worth a ton of theory.
Let all the agreed details be committed to writing and signed by the Committee.
Fifthly, a good independent Chairman is very important. After all, unless the debate is to be printed, which presupposes it will be, a good lecture will do more good than half-a-dozen debates. That is the experience of the writer, who has been a disputant in more than a score of public debates in different parts of the country.