This I came across on suttacentral’s quotes just now.
Vacchagotta said to the Lord: “I have heard it said that you, good Gotama, teach that charity should only be given to you, not to others, to your followers, not to the followers of other teachers. Are those who say this representing your opinion without distorting it? Do they speak according to your teaching? For indeed, good Gotama, I am anxious not to misrepresent you.”
The Lord replied: “Vaccha, those who say this are not of my opinion, they misrepresent me and say what is not true. Truly, whoever discourages another from giving charity hinders them in three ways. What three? He hinders the giver from acquiring good, he hinders the receiver from receiving the charity, and he has already ruined himself through his meanness.”
-Vacchagotta, Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.57
From this, what I got was the important part is the intent on The Buddha’s charity for giving the teachings rather than judging what authentic and bypassing why the teaching is good despite misinterpretations.
Aka no “sola suttura”
In your link, what caught me was the reference to The Lotus Sutra. I read most of it when I had practiced Nichiren Buddhism. In relation to the burning house and The Buddha’s forth precept, that is hard. The intent or message is that an enlighten one is that who helps sentient beings in the manner they understand. The analogy (which The Buddha says it was) wasn’t intended to teach about the father lying. He would be contradicting himself if that were his message.
The sutras are about the message.
In sola scriptura, its based on authenticity by literal content to describe the context.
In The Suttas, the dialogue is meant for the disciples and readers to understand the intent behind the message. One popular quoted sutta I about The Buddha dodging the question about the afterlife. If The Buddha knew all, and he taught wisdom not divinity, he probably would have said he knew but didn’t want to say. He didn’t know.
But the Message was not to question if its real. From what I gather The Buddha didn’t write his dialogues. It was “did you get my point?” So, I’d read it with that in mind.
“Yes. I said there is a real bad guy Mara. Sure, I said the kids can stay in a burning house long enough to wait for the father to decide how to save his children without burning up in the time he pondered”
Did you get my point?
As with the practice part, that can only get you so far. If you thought The Buddha wanted you to lie because that’s what the father did, you’d be practicing under false assumptions (in my opinion). If you thought Mara will punish you, again false. I think thats also where the need for a teacher comes in.
But in general The Buddha in both suttas and sutras used analogies to show his messages intent. A few themes in all I read so far is the noble truths, eight fold, hindrances, and meditation (etc).
Bounce all other suttas and sutras you read off the basics. If you question, look into it and ask yourself,
What was his point?