My Conversion to the Catholic Church

Originally published in Surprised by Truth 3

HOW CAN I KEEP MY HEART FROM SINGING

Pam Forrester

When I was eight I asked my mom to take me to the little church at the end of our street. She began to drop me off every week for Sunday School. One Sunday, my teacher presented the Gospel and encouraged us to accept Jesus Christ as our savior.
“But,” she told us, “you must be willing to do anything for God, like be a missionary.”
Well, I really wanted to be saved but I did not want to be a missionary! I had to think this over. I went home and thought about it for a while, my little 8 year-old soul struggling against selfish desire. Some weeks later, I convinced myself that I would be willing to be a missionary for Jesus and I asked Him to come into my heart.

For years I had a very fervent faith, even up to my first year in college – when the theory of evolution and the desire to sin enticed me to abandon my faith. I conveniently became an atheist for two years during the 60’s. Then, my mom gave me a copy of The Late Great Planet Earth, a book about the second coming of Christ. After reading it, I decided that perhaps the Bible was relevant after all and not just some dusty old book I could safely ignore. So, I rededicated my life to Christ.

I gave a copy of the Late Great Planet Earth to my boyfriend Mike, a first-year medical student, and he committed his life to Christ too. A year later we took a Bible course called The Bethel Series – a two year overview of the whole Bible. We got married, taught Bethel, led small group Bible studies and studied Scripture in depth. We moved from California to Baltimore so Mike could do his surgery residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital. And then we moved to Houston so he could do specialty training.

***

Since we were convinced that the Bible alone was sufficient for faith and salvation, we wanted to know exactly what words in the Bible meant. I bought a Greek dictionary and a Greek interlinear Bible and taught myself to read the Greek alphabet. When Mike finished his residency we moved to California with our three young children. Mike set up practice in a small town north of San Diego. We found a great church and we joined a weekly Bible study group.

Pregnant with Number Four-David

It was here that we first heard about the doctrine of Eternal Security – the belief that a once a Christian is “saved,” he cannot lose salvation no matter what he does. We objected initially, but were assured it was true, our friends firing off memorized Bible verses to support the doctrine. We backed down for a while. Then Mike began his own Bible study by listening to tapes of the Bible while exercising. I also studied, on my own, with my dictionaries, concordances and Greek interlinear. Before long, Mike was using these sources as well. We soon became convinced that there were hundreds of verses that did not align with the “once saved, always saved” doctrine. Our Bible study group swelled to overflowing as Mike taught how Scripture refuted Eternal Security. We were labeled Arminian even though we had never heard of Arminius or what he wrote. But we did reject Calvinism, especially the doctrine of Limited Atonement .

Our pastors did not agree with us, but since everything Mike was teaching was biblical he was allowed to continue as an elder in the church and even to teach from the pulpit several times a year. Some people agreed with us; some were convinced we were heretics and told us so. Mike’s sermons usually caused controversy. The Elder board tried to talk Mike out of speaking on Eternal Security issues; others tried to show us the error of our ways.
We worried about the people who might think they were eternally secure and bound for heaven no matter what kind of life they lived. My husband even wrote a two volume book and was asked to teach at a Bible college by a popular radio preacher in order to point out the errors of the “once saved, always saved” theology. We were still convinced that once all the biblical evidence was compiled it would be irresistibly persuasive and all our friends and pastors would see the truth.

But the evidence was met with a yawn. Those who disagreed with us didn’t refute the scriptural evidence – they just ignored it. We were astounded! We eventually realized that most people didn’t really practice sola scriptura after all; they clung to the Protestant traditions begun by Luther and Calvin, sometimes in spite of Scripture. After ten years of attempting to show how the Bible did not support Eternal Security, being called heretics, hearing through the grapevine about people who resented and suspected us, we became discouraged and disillusioned.

If I hadn’t been so thoroughly convinced there was a God, I could easily have become an atheist. In my heart I was prideful, arrogant, and critical. No church quite suited me since most Protestant churches incorporate some form of Calvinism. According to my understanding of the Bible, which I was convinced was led by the Holy Spirit, all the nearby churches were wrong about something. Despite this, I sensed that my attitude was not Christ-like, so I would pray about that. I wanted to be humble, but I just…wasn’t. “Maybe I am a heretic?” I wondered. “What makes me so sure I’m right and other Christians are wrong?” I desperately wanted to find a church where I could simply worship God without being critical. In the meantime, all I could do was studiously try to keep my mind from dwelling on criticisms. I thought I could be content in my apathy.

***

A few years later, in the summer 1997, while perusing home school curriculum catalogs, I saw a course for junior high school students designed to introduce Protestants to the Catholic faith and vice versa. The student was supposed to read the books in one order if he was Protestant and in the opposite order if he was Catholic, so that the last book read confirmed him in his own faith tradition. Since my oldest daughter had just started college at USD, a Catholic university, I decided that this would be the perfect time to find out more about the Catholic faith. That way if Heather came home with questions, I would be able to answer them. I didn’t want her to become Catholic!

I ordered three of the books. The first, Evangelical Is Not Enough was written by Thomas Howard, a convert to Catholicism and the brother of prominent Evangelical, Elizabeth Elliot( Through Gates of Splendor and End of the Spear). I had long been curious about why a “Christian” would join the Catholic Church, and found Howard’s story interesting. He also made a lot of sense, and I grew slightly annoyed that I had accepted so many misconceptions about the Catholic faith. Hey, I thought, maybe the Catholic Church wasn’t so weird after all.

One evening at our Bible study, my husband brought up John 14:26, where Jesus says,

“the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”

Mike reminded every one that our usual interpretation of this verse was that this promise was given to each and every believer. The result has been that there are now over 25,000 different Protestant denominations. But the Catholic view, as Howard had explained it, is that this promise was made in the upper room to the twelve disciples and therefore it only applied to them and their successors: the Pope and the Catholic leaders. Without the final, ruling authority of Christ through the Bishop of Rome and the Magisterium, the Catholic Church would splinter into even more sects than Protestantism.

I was quietly aghast because I wasn’t ready to say anything yet. No one said much and we went on with the study as usual. But I found out the next day that one of my best friends at the study had cried all the way home. She had been shocked to hear us say something outside of “Scripture alone”. And I didn’t blame her. I decided then not to say a word to anyone about my research into the Catholic Church until it became absolutely necessary, if ever.

After reading Howard’s book, I felt very broadminded toward the Catholic Church. But I did not sense the danger my Protestantism was in as I opened up the second book, Catholicism and Fundamentalism by Karl Keating. This book promised Catholic answers to the charges against “Romanism” by “Bible Christians”. By the time I had read about half of the book, I no longer felt broad minded, but sick and horrified all at once. I had read enough of Keating’s book to learn, for the first time, that Catholicism had a defense for beliefs like the Eucharist and Papacy. Keating’s use of Scripture was standard exegesis. It made sense. What I read in that book coalesced with doubts and questions I had put on the back burners of my mind. No longer simmering, they began to boil.

For instance, I had long wondered, how could each and every individual person’s faith rest on personal devotional Bible reading, when most people, until relatively modern times, couldn’t even read? And even if they could read, they wouldn’t be able to own their own personal Bible because Bibles were hand copied (until the 16th century) and very expensive.

Personal devotional Bible reading for growing in Christ began to seem suspiciously modern. Especially when I discovered that the Catholic Church had read Scripture to the faithful at every Mass for 2000 years. But could the Catholic Church be the one Church founded by Jesus Christ himself? No! Never! It couldn’t possibly be true. My soul in turmoil, I slammed Catholicism and Fundamentalism shut and grabbed the book that was supposed to confirm me in my Protestant faith, The Gospel According to Rome by James McCarty.

***

In McCarty’s book I was looking for a rebuttal to Catholic Scripture interpretation. I wanted to know why Jesus didn’t literally mean to eat His flesh in John 6, when that sure seemed like what He said. I wanted to know exactly why Jesus did not found His Church on Peter in Matthew 16, when that is what He said. I wanted to know what was wrong with confession to a priest when the Bible says, “confess your sins to one another,” and “Receive the Holy Spirit, whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven….”
But, The Gospel According to Rome didn’t help at all. It didn’t address my questions, but merely explained why Catholicism was wrong according to traditional Protestant interpretations of certain Biblical passages. It never convincingly refuted the Catholic interpretation of verses that supported Catholic beliefs.

Now I really felt scared. I begged God to show me the truth about what was wrong with the Catholic Church. I did not want to be Catholic. There were no Catholics anywhere in either of our families. I had never been anti-Catholic; I believed there were a few real Christians in the Catholic Church in spite of Catholicism. I liked Catholics, I just didn’t want to be one!
I stopped reading for several weeks. I needed to get my perspective back. I thought and prayed. When I felt calm again, I picked up Keating’s book and finished it. Yes, the Catholic Church had good reasons, Biblical reasons, for its theology. But I was certain there had to be a good Protestant refutation, by somebody, somewhere.

But here was my dilemma. We had this early church that we trusted to tell us which writings floating around the ancient world were inerrant and inspired. It seemed logical, then, that we should therefore be able to trust this same church and the doctrines taught by it at least up until the time the Bible was canonized. Right? We always used to talk about the church of the Apostles and how it was the true model for Christian belief and practice. So when reading the Acts of the Apostles we sought to align our present day worship with what we found in sacred scripture. This goal of worshiping in imitation of the early church was a foundational principle. Therefore, you can imagine my shock when I discovered that this early church believed in that particularly Catholic doctrine, the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

“They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they do not confess that the Eucharist is the Flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, Flesh which suffered for our sins and which the Father, in His goodness, raised up again.”

-St. Ignatius of Antioch- 110 AD

“We call this food Eucharist; and no one else is permitted to partake of it, except one who believes…so too, as we have been taught the food which has been made into the Eucharist by the Eucharistic prayer set down by Him, and by the change of which our blood and flesh is nourished, is both the Flesh and the Blood of that incarnated Jesus.”

-St. Justin Martyr-150 AD

***

Jesus tells his followers eight times to eat His flesh in John 6. I came to the inescapable conclusion that the earliest Christians took Jesus literally. When I found out that even Martin Luther – one of the principal fathers of the Reformation – believed in the Real Presence I realized that Christians had always believed this doctrine.

This put me in a tough position.

On the one hand, the early Church canonized the Bible around 400 AD. On the other hand that very same early Church believed in the Real Presence of Christ (and, I was discovering, many other Catholic doctrines). The standard Protestant solution to this dilemma was that these strange Catholic doctrines were pagan corruptions of the pure and simple Christianity of the apostles. But I could no more take the Bible from the hand of a church that was supposed to be corrupted by paganism than I could accept the Pearl of Great Price (an extra biblical text considered part of inspired Scripture by Mormons) while rejecting everything else about the Mormon belief system. That seemed totally irrational. I couldn’t buy it.

Being a Protestant was like watching a Corpus Christi procession, then rushing up and knocking down the priests and nuns, candles, censors, crucifix, and monstrance but grabbing the Bible and carrying it away and basing faith on it alone. What sense does that make? I just could not find a logical way to accept the authority of the Bible while rejecting the beliefs of the very earliest Christian Church that, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit (which we all believe) chose the books that make up the Bible.

***

I began to read Catholic books, hoping to find the Church’s Achilles heel.

Nothing.

Still resisting, I called Hector, a pastor friend who had a ministry to bring Hispanics out of the Catholic Church. He seemed like a likely candidate to know the intricacies of Catholic doctrine and what was wrong with it. I told him what I was going through and he sympathetically recommended The Gospel According to Rome. I told him I’d read it and it wasn’t convincing.
Then he asked, “But, what about the fact that Jesus had brothers? The Bible talks about the brothers and sisters of Jesus.”
My experience with Greek had already helped me tackle this question.

“I looked that up and the Greek word can legitimately be translated ‘kinsman’ or ‘brother’ depending upon the context,” I said. “And that same Greek word is translated ‘kinsman’ in lots of other places in the New Testament. Such as when Paul addresses the recipients of his epistles. So the Catholics could be right about Mary being ever-virgin,” I said.

He kindly promised to pray for me and we hung up. I silently stared into space and wondered, “Is that the best he can do?!”

A few hours later my pastor called. I decided Hector must have called him so I told him all about my dilemma. Then I asked,

“Why don’t we believe in the Real Presence of Christ in Communion when Jesus says in John 6 over and over that we must eat His body and drink His blood in order to have eternal life? Why don’t we take it literally like the Catholics do?”

“That is just symbolic,” he responded “because later Jesus says the flesh is of no avail.”

“Yes, Jesus says, ‘the flesh is of no avail’ but what does He mean by that? Jesus is God in the flesh. Is His flesh of no avail?”

“Well of course His flesh is important. The ‘flesh of Jesus availeth much.’ But Jesus is speaking symbolically when he talks about eating his flesh.”

“Ok, but how do we know that for certain?” I asked.

“Because cannibalism is strictly forbidden in the Old Testament.”

“You’re right. But the Old Testament prohibition against cannibalism is exactly why many of Jesus’ Jewish disciples left Him at this point saying, ‘This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?’ And as far as we know Jesus didn’t chase after them and say, ‘Wait, I was only speaking symbolically!’ So the disciples who left understood Jesus to be speaking literally. Otherwise, why would they leave? So somehow Jesus must have been speaking literally and yet not advocating cannibalism. The Catholic doctrine of the Eucharist is literal and yet not literally cannibalistic since Jesus didn’t cut off His arm and pass is around saying, ‘Take, eat.’ How can we as Protestants respond to this?”

“Well, what about all the money they spent building cathedrals when people were starving?”

“But when they built a cathedral it was like a giant welfare project. People had work for years and years,” I replied.

He changed the subject again: “The Catholic Church became corrupted by pagan beliefs shortly after the apostles died.”

“Well then, wouldn’t that mean that the gates of Hell prevailed against His Church and Jesus was unable to keep that promise?”

“No…there was always a remnant.”

“But how can we know for sure that the remnant part of the Church, the true Church of Christ, was the one that canonized the Bible and not the corrupted part of the Church?”

“We just trust the Holy Spirit was able to do that.”
“But the earliest Christians held Catholic beliefs like the real presence and the perpetual virginity of Mary? Who threw these beliefs out? Luther believed them. Luther and Calvin believed Mary was a perpetual virgin. Who decided Mary definitely had other children when everyone right up to and including the Reformation believed she only gave birth to Jesus?”

Our conversation continued like this for a couple of hours. When he couldn’t give an answer he changed the subject. I wasn’t actually defending the Church at that point. I was telling him the Catholic viewpoint in desperate hope that he could give me a convincing Protestant rebuttal. But nothing he said was convincing.

Later I wrote him letters with about forty questions and included a review of the books I had read. He was in a doctoral program at the time, and I hoped maybe he could get some answers from his professors. When we talked again he said I had done so much research that he didn’t have time to get up to speed with me. He told me to go ahead and visit a Catholic Church, thinking that would put an end to my fantasy. It didn’t. Meanwhile I kept searching for a Protestant refutation of the Catholic Faith. There just had to be one.

***

Next, I watched a video debate between Father Mitch Pacwa S.J. and two prominent Protestant apologists (Walter Martin and John Ankerberg). Again, there was no refutation of Catholic claims, no explaining what was wrong with Catholic exegesis: only what was wrong with the Catholic beliefs, according to the interpretation of Scripture in a particular Protestant tradition. My husband, who was at once fascinated by the Catholic interpretation of Sacred Scripture and at the same time repulsed by the thought of becoming Catholic, was also disappointed that no one refuted the points Father Pacwa made. Martin and Ankerberg never explained why Fr. Pacwa’s interpretation was wrong. They merely condemned Catholic theology according to what they thought the Bible meant.

For example, I remember Walter Martin asking,

“Why does the Catholic Church believe Mary was without sin when she admits that God is her savior in Luke 1:47? She must have needed a savior because she sinned.”

Fr. Pacwa replied “Yes, she needed a savior. But, a person can be saved out of a pit after he has fallen in, or he can be saved from the pit before he falls in. We believe God saved Mary before she fell into sin by creating her, from conception, without the fallen nature caused by the stain of Original Sin, she otherwise would have inherited from her parents. So He created Mary without sin just like He created Adam and Eve without sin.”

Martin and Ankerberg would then go on to to another topic without dealing with Fr. Pacwa’s explanations.

***

Then, I decided to find out why some of my ex-Catholic friends had left the Church. One of them, I was surprised to learn, was on the verge of returning to the Catholic Church. The others had just drifted away when their parents could no longer make them go to Sunday Mass. None had left for any particular doctrinal reason.
One friend assured me the Catholic Church was really weird and unscriptural because she remembered, as a young, devout Catholic, having to go from church to church all in one day in order to say prayers for her loved ones. She assured me that she couldn’t pray for all the people she cared about in one church, but was only allowed pray for one person per church. I have since asked priests and lay Catholic friends if they have ever heard of this; none have. Perhaps she was either misinformed or misunderstood. Even if it were true, it seems to me little reason to reject the Church!

***

After six months of frantic detective work, I had exhausted every avenue I could think of to find a Protestant rebuttal to Catholic doctrine. There were of course many great Protestant arguments out there.

The trouble with them was that they rebutted doctrines that Catholics didn’t believe. For instance, you could find lots of apologetic material condemning the worship of Mary, complete with scriptures against idolatry. But that was useless, since the Catholic Church too condemns the worship of Mary. Most importantly, I could find no good Protestant reason for the rejection of the Real Presence in the Eucharist when John 6 so clearly has Jesus commanding his disciples to eat His flesh, and historically all Christians believed this doctrine for the first 1500 years of Christianity. I finally “knocked at the door” of my parish church and began the process of entering the Church.

When I told my friends, they were mostly kind and accepting. Some tried to dissuade me from entering the Church. And one friend, Donna, invited me to go to hear anti-Catholic, apologist Bart Brewer speak about the Catholic Church at a large nondenominational church in a nearby town. I knew Brewer was an ex-priest and anti-Catholic but I went anyway. The Easter Vigil was only months away. I wanted to let him take his best shot at me before I entered the Church. But as it turned out his was just the same old attack on the Catholic Church without refuting the scriptural and historical evidence for its doctrines.

Surprisingly, Donna saw through his double standard. While Brewer criticized and condemned the Catholic Church for relying on the “Bible plus the Catechism” instead of relying on the Bible alone, she was struck by the realization that he wasn’t sola scriptura either! He was relying on the Bible plus Calvin’s Institutes. She found him totally useless in helping her to “deprogram” me.

***

Eighteen months after my inquiry began, I embraced the Holy Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil 1999. Our four youngest children were received into the Catholic Church at Easter 2000 with my husband’s permission. My husband and three oldest children are still Protestant but they are very supportive – especially my husband In fact, Mike is currently leading a Catholic/Protestant Bible study on the Gospel of John, with the stated purpose of teaching the biblical basis for Catholic theology. At first, I thought he would quickly follow me into the Church, but he has his own path to follow on the journey of faith.

But Donna entered the Catholic Church at Easter 2002. I am thankful to my Protestant teachers for the solid foundation they laid in me about the truths of Christianity, the illusions of worldly passions, and encouragement to study God’s Holy Word. It fed my soul for forty years. The irony is, I studied the Bible so much I uncovered many discrepancies between some Protestant doctrines and Sacred Scripture. This was the beginning of my loss of confidence in Protestant Christianity

But it wasn’t until Catholic authors made me face the historical evidence that Christianity preexisted the New Testament by 400 years that I began to consider the implications of this fact. That the Faith was alive, making converts, establishing churches, instructing and baptizing converts for so long (for reference, 400 years ago was about the time the Pilgrims came to America!) before the New Testament was compiled, meant that the New Testament could not be the touchstone of the Faith. The New Testament was not the very first reservoir of Christian teaching.

Something else existed before it.

And that same “something else” kept the Faith alive and also gave birth to the New Testament. It was the oral teaching, the deposit of the Faith of the Apostles, that was used to make the final decisions about which books would end up in the New Testament. No book was included in the canon of the New Testament that contradicted the Faith of the Apostles. And that is why, I discovered to my joy, that nothing in Catholic doctrine contradicts anything in the Bible. The Bible, loved by Protestants as well as Catholics, the inspired and inerrant word of God, was written and published by the Catholic Church.

The icing on the cake of solid, scriptural Catholic doctrine was the beauty and poetry of Catholic worship. Its reverence in comparison to modern Evangelical praise services spoke to me of its ancient pedigree and authenticity. The Mass is ancient and Jewish – closer in form to Temple worship than to a Calvary Chapel. The ritual, prayers, and priestly robes are more Old Testament than my former Evangelical Free Church. And the incense and chants echo the heavenly worship found in the Book of Revelation better than any Baptist service.

In the end, a thousand tiny puzzle pieces of Bible verses, doctrines, prayers history, martyrs, liturgy, came together to form for me a clear image of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

“It is impossible to be just to the Catholic Church. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it. But when that affection has passed a certain point it begins to take on the tragic and menacing grandeur of a great love affair.”

-G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936)


Pam Forrester writes from Fallbrook, California, where she lives with her husband, Mike; married in 1975. They have seven children. The youngest was six when her mother entered the Catholic Church. And, do you remember that little church I visited when I was 8 years old? That was the first church of Robert Schuller. Mike and I were married in the Garden Grove Community Church which later became the Chrystal Cathedral, built after we moved away. Then I became Catholic in 1999 and then even my first church, the Chrystal Cathedral became Catholic in 2012, when the Diocese of Orange County bought it for their Cathedral. It is now Christ Cathedral.

Technorati Tags: , ,

800 Responses

  1. I read your Conversion story. Hooray, and belated Welcome. I, too, love being a Catholic.

    Thank you for using Blog technology to Share your Catholic faith, as JPII recommended in the New Evangelism. I’m not an Apologist, but hope to use my blog (brand new at it) as an example of one living the Catholic life.
    Maryellen

  2. I really enjoyed your story.
    It made me happy to know that you embraced
    truth and it lead you here.
    Kudos for following your heart and not letting
    pride get into way.
    Thank you for posting :)

    God Bless

  3. It is amazing how God works! You got your basics from Protestantism and found what you were missing in the Catholic Church. I got my basics from the Catholic Church, and found a love for the Bible and fellowship through Protestantism. I am looking forward to coming back to your blog. Peace.

  4. What a great story. I was 40 when we entered the Church, Easter 2006.
    God bless your work here. May it bear much fruit.
    Tim

  5. Beautiful. In the end, a thousand tiny puzzle pieces of Bible verses, doctrines, prayers history, martyrs, liturgy, came together to form for me a clear image of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

    Is the title a reference to a Rich Mullins song?

    God Bless

    • Sometimes things seem beautiful but are a deception. I am afraid for you please read my comment above or below, or both.
      Protestants and Catholics are both wrong. I do not say this without good cause. Please see my comment @ either “undyingself” above or @ Bob Hinnenkamp below
      Jesus founded one church. It is evident that He did not found either the Protestant church or the Catholic church. See my comment above @ undyingself.
      There is not as much truth in the story as you may think. Check out the comment above.

  6. Wow, what a story! I am in the process now and will be hopefully received Easter of 2008. For me, I was a protestant, but only in name. I studied catholic beliefs in college and ended up usually having to defend the church from ugly slanders even though I wasn’t catholic. My biggest concern was that I didn’t want to jeopardize all the time and effort I had put into my (protestant) church–I was in the discernment process for ordained ministry. I also really liked the people in my church and didn’t want to leave them. One day I heard in the gospel Jesus saying that we should always look forward and not backward “once you have touched the plow you cannot go back” Something about it said “stop pretending and take the plunge.” Thanks for your work and all I can say for living in California is “Courage!” It takes a lot to remain faithful to catholic doctrine in an atmosphere of, shall we say, wayward orthodoxy–believe me, I know! Thanks again.

  7. A poignant and most encouraging witness to the Faith. I am encouraging others to visit the site to give your story a read as well as the other fine work you have done. Many thanks and Advent blessings to you and yours!
    Fr. Charles

  8. Wonderful story. I am in the midst of educating myself on the Catholic Church. I have been for a bout a year now, and the Chesterton Quote is proving truer every day. I don’t think I’ll be able to go much longer without converting.

  9. when baptized, do you have to go under the water ?

    • Yes, you must be immersed for that is the meaning of the Greek word and the example of the scriptures. The translators did not translate that word, but rather transliterated it because men had Apostatized the practice and had begun to pour and sprinkle in stead. Therefore, the translators did not want to make it evident that the practice of that day was not according to the scriptures.

      See also my comments above, below, or on Mrs. Forrester’s home page.

    • Actually Joseph was incorrect. Submersion or sprinkling are both valid baptisms so long as you use the Trinitarian formula. The same Greek word used in baptism is also used in reference to the “pouring out of the Spirit on the Apostles at Pentecost” indicating that pouring is a completely acceptable form of baptism.

  10. Not necessarily. Water must run over part or all of the body–usually at least the head. Full immersion is a fuller sign but in arid climates if full immersion was absolutely required this would have been a great hardship on the Church and the one desiring baptism. So living water is the first choice, that is running water, moving water but for the sick in bed,babies,and for the sake of making baptism as accessible as possible some water may be poured over the catechumen three times in the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

  11. Pam – Very well done. I’m impressed. I would
    like to converse with you some more on this but wou
    would like to do it via e-mail which would be
    less cumbersome. Look forward to hearing from
    you. It has been a long time. Dale Fort

  12. Wonderful story! When you really get down to it, all of the seven supposedly unscriptural sacrements can be found right in scripture, and again, to the fundamentalist “sola scriptura” group, it’s easy enough to point them towards John 20:30 when defending Tradition.

    If you enjoyed your journey from Protestantism to Catholicism, you might like to read up on the Orthodox Church. There are certain things which Rome changed, or added to the Christian faith, and you’ll find that it is the Orthodox Church which preserved the original faith of the Apostles.

    Not to say that Catholicism isn’t true, but when I was Catholic they loved to say that it was in Catholicism where Protestants could find the fullness of Christianity, and now I’ve come to discover that the Orthodox can say the same to Catholics!

    +God bless, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit!

    • I doubt it. First, find me an Orthodox faith that’s even in unison let alone if the different national “churches” are even talking to each other. How many of your past patriachs had been heretics? Where is the “missionary” Orthodox church in the great commission of Christ to preach to the whole world in the past centuries? If you are right, then Christ must be lying about his church and the reign of his kingdom. Will (future) Christian unity come by way of Orthodoxy? Not a chance. Orthodoxy cannot even unite among itself, let alone trying to unify Christianity in one faith..

    • I am a Methodist convert to Catholicism have tremendous respect for my Orthodox brothers and sisters. Having said that, Jesus explicitly names the apostle Peter the rock on which the Church would be built, giving him the keys to the Kingdom and promising that the gates of Hell would never prevail against His Church. Peter was the first Bishop of Rome and had apostolic primacy, as do his successors through apostolic succession, that is why the Pope has authority over the Church. It was not just a symbol of honor but also of leadership, as Christ instructs Peter to feed and take care of His sheep, naming him the Shepherd. There is one way we can know whether Catholicism or Orthodoxy is the final infallible authority, which one is the Rock? According to Jesus, it’s the one built on Peter, the Roman Catholic Church.

  13. [...] testimony is that there are many already that say better what I’d say – for example Pam Forrester or, more extensively, Thomas Howard’s wonderful little book Evangelical is Not [...]

  14. Pam, bless you abundantly for sharing your
    providential move from protestantism to
    Catholicism. I am following in your footsteps. albeit
    with “fear and trembling” as Paul says. Is there a
    time when I will sense a definite “break through”
    coming, so that I will have the spiritual stamina
    and desire for ultimate Truth to keep on keeping
    on?When will I “know that I know”‘ or is this just another step of faith by which I will arrive at the Gates
    guarded by St. Peter where I will either be allowed
    to enter or be sent
    back for further study.

    at the age of 72, I am writing my Spiritual Memoirs as commissioned by the Lord who has led
    me to this place in my search, having told me
    in advance that He will be separating wheat from chaff in me, especially “doctrinal error.”

    I needed to read your testimony,for I was on the verge
    of pulling back in order to rethink the path
    I am on and have been on for almost two years.
    Now, having read of your conversion, I am continuing
    on and not turning back.

    Question: How can I access your other writings?
    Do you have an email or web address?
    Please reply. Sarah

  15. Mrs. Forrester, the dark side of your route is that it wasn’t Mr. Forrester’s route too. Perhaps, a 75 years’ old cradle Catholic, who never had any doubt, but did have to find a rationale for what he was when challenged, and for what he did when tempted, might be able to tell him something useful that a lady can’t.

    He is welcome to get in touch, and the Simplesinner knows me. I haven’t asked but I am confident, he will establish a bridge.

    God bless.
    Michael

  16. Thanks Michael. His name is Michael too. I will let him know.

  17. Does your husband attend Mass with you?(Am I correct in understanding he has not converted?)
    Also, I have not had a chance to begin RCIA, I have a few questions. Other than communion, may I participate in other “activities”(I don’t know a better word!) at Mass? Kneeling, reciting the creeds(it is the same as I grew up with) such as that? I have asked my husband and he is like…. I think so!
    Thanks and have a blessed day!

  18. Yes. You are absolutely welcome to participate in everything at your parish. The sacraments are the only thing that you need to wait for.
    May God bless you richly on your journey of Faith.

  19. Thank You!

  20. One more question. How do I get directly here( I told you I am not too bright! ha) I keep going to TBC and clicking on your link, please advise me of a direct link!
    Thanks! :)

  21. I was just wondering about Mary. Why does the Catholic church believe that mary was always a virgin? Has anyone ever read Matthew 1: 24-25 ” When Joseph woke up and did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he(Joseph) had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.
    It looks like to me that they did not have sex with her until AFTER Jesus was born. And if you know anything about the Jewish culture, it was forbidden to be married and not have sex. If you refused your husband could divorce you.

  22. Lynne,
    Good questions. Because this is such a big issue for non Catholics I have several posts in answer to these issues. You can click on the topic Mary or take a look at these posts in particular.
    Luther on Perpetual Virginity of Mary

    Who were the brothers and sisters of Jesus?

    If you norws Calvins position, the until does not mean that after they did have sex. We use it that way a lot but also in scripture there is this:
    And Michal had not children UNTIL the day of her death.

    We know Michal didn’t have any children on the day she died or afterwards. That is not the meaning. So the contention that the verse you have cited can have no other interpretation other than that Mary and Joseph had sex after Jesus’ birth, is not true. Given the fact that all the early fathers of the Church spoke of the perpetual virginity of Mary the evidence is in favor of the Catholic interpretation.

    There was no absolute necessity that Mary be a perpetual virgin but it is just a historical fact. And the Church is in the business of teaching the truth. Mary took a vow before of perpetual virginity befoe the Angle visited her. Immaculate Conception of Mary

  23. Hello, my name is Rachel and I am a new Catholic. If it’s okay, I’d like to share my story:
    I had never been a serious Christian growing up. I went to an Evangelical Church, got “saved” many times and never meant it. I was agnostic all through college then in my last year decided I wanted to learn Latin. I had a friend who was Catholic, I asked him to take me to a Latin Mass so I could hear the language. I went there and felt the presence of God- especially strong around communion time. When the priest lifted the wafer and said “hoc est corpus meum, ” I knew I was missing something.
    I asked God if he wanted me to join the Catholic church, he gave me two signs (one in a dream where these people were singing about the “black hat of the Holy Spirit” and then the next day I found a black hat). The other was a flood of emotion during a mass. Needless to say after much examination, I entered RCIA and got confirmed Easter 2008. My life has had new meaning since. I have had numerous spiritual experiences and a love for Christ I did not think myself capable of.
    I am new to this site so I’m sorry if I posted this in the wrong place.

  24. Rachel,
    Welcome the Catholic Church. Your note rejoices my heart. Stay strong, cling to Christ, receive the sacraments often (confession and communion)

  25. Rachel, great story!
    Be blessed! :)

  26. Thank you all. When I was in college (mind my last year) I had a great Mass schedule: I went to Latin Mass on Sat, English on Sun, and another Mass during the week. Now I only go once or twice a week, usually once now that winter has hit and I don’t have a car. Oh, I miss summer when I’d walk 1.5 miles to Adoration!

  27. I noticed you take alot of reference from
    what man speaks rather than from the Word of God that is the Scriptures.

    John 6 : 29 Jesus spoke:the Work of God is to believe in His Son.
    At the Mt of Transfiguration, Peter, james & John had witnessed Jesus together with Moses & Elijah. peter said that it would be good to build a temple for each of them. Immediately, God’s cloud came down and covered them and God spoke : This is my Beloved Son, Listen to Him!”.
    Peter tried to put Moses & Elijah in the same position as Jesus and God came down immediately and spoke. Listen to Him. Moses & Elijah knew how to step back – because it is all about Jesus that God is concerned. Peter James & John were probably in fear because Jesus told them “Rise, do not fear.”

    We should always refer to scriptures. What does the Scripture speaks & it’s stand. Scripture is the word of God. If Scripture said Jesus ascended above. It happened as it is. Not what man declared. When The Holy Spirit of God breath words into the prophets – that is the Word of God. God gave the title Morning Star and so forth. man has no right to give to another human. We should always focus on Jesus. Even in the old testamount, God was speaking about Jesus from the King Melchidezek, the PassOver lamb to the Rock that Moses strike to the Psalms that declares jesus to the book of Isaiah that speaks of The Holy One of Israel – nobody else except jesus, Son of the Living God. Even the Tabernacle Sacrifice speaks of Jesus If you understand the Levitical worship. We boast of the Lord not of humans. Romans 3 :4 states : Let God be the Truth and every man a liar.”

    The Bible is called the Word of God.
    Jesus is The Word of God
    He is the Word that was made flesh
    He is the The Messiah
    He is The Son of the Living God
    He is the Savior
    He is our Righteousness
    If Christ Justifies us who is to opposed?
    If Abraham was credited as Righteous for His Belief and so did Noah who believed God. It is our believed in our heart that we are justified and it is through our confession(speaking forth/declaring) we are saved – Romans 10 :10
    He died and rose. He is Risen.
    The Gospel of Salvation is the Good News that He delivers by His Grace. It is also called The Gospel of Christ.

    He is The Son of God whom God send to redeem us so that we may be recounciled to God through Christ.
    He is in the order of the Priesthood of Melchidezek.
    He is the Amen
    He is Risen King & He will come again.
    Let us not boast in Man but let us boast in the Lord.
    It is not because of my effort I am made the rightousness of God but it is by Christ effort in His Sacrifice.
    It is not how much I love God but how much God loved me
    It is not about what i can do for God but it is about what God had done for me.
    My God loves me and it is because of this I am writing.
    signed
    Beloved of God
    Davide dennis chua
    PS why are there so many religiouns in the world – it is to distract us from focusing on Jesus. Let’s not compromise The Word of God. Christ Order does not conform to church order but the church which is the body of Christ conforms to Christ ordinances.

  28. David: I noticed you take a lot of reference from
    what man speaks rather than from the Word of God that is the Scriptures.

    BFHU: David, are you aware that the dogma that all that is to be believed MUST be found in Scripture is the dogma of a man? Martin Luther. There is NO SCRIPTURAL COMMANDMENT to do this. So I am not willing to accept the premise of Sola Scriptura since the premise cannot even be found in scripture. Protestants insist that Catholics use only scripture and yet this Protestant Dogma is NOT to be found anywhere in scripture. You are using a double standard.

    DAVID: We should always refer to scriptures.

    BFHU: Where is this exhortation found in scripture? Nothing the Catholic Church believes contradicts anything is scripture and nothing ever will because the Catholic Faith gave birth to the Scripture. Contradiction is only found between Protestant INTERPRETATION and Catholic interpretation. Catholic interpretation is 2000 years old and taught to us by the Apostles. Protestant interpretation is only 500 years old and has thousands of variations. Why in the world should we trust any Protestant interpretation. And if so…which one?

    DAVID: If Abraham was credited as Righteous for His Belief

    BFHU: What about ?

    James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? 22 You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected;

    DAVID: It is our belief in our heart that we are justified and it is through our confession(speaking forth/declaring) we are saved – Romans 10 :10

    BFHU: Then surely you do not ignore the scripture that says that Baptism saves you?
    1 Peter 3:21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—-through the resurrection of Jesus Christ

    As regards religions, there have always been many different pagan religions but only ONE TRUE RELIGION. The real tragedy is that the Protestants split off from the Church established by Christ on Peter (Matthew 16:18 ) And proceeded to split into a myriad of sects despite the stated desire of Christ that we all be ONE. (Jn 17:21-22) This is indeed the work of Our Enemy.

    The Protestants, despite their protestations of Sola Scriptura, ignore scripture that does not fit their theology. But I have found that the Catholic FAITH is a splendid fit with Sacred Scripture. The Catholic FAITH is sublime beyond telling and can only be supernatural.
    I agree with everything else in your post.

    • P.S.

      As I have always maintained, I am not a Protestant. Protestants follow the teachings of men just as the Catholics do.

      • You are certainly a child of Protestantism whether you like it or not. Otherwise, you will be subscribing and submitting to the lordship, discipline and authority of Jesus Christ and his church. There is only one God , one Christ, one faith, one baptism and one church … you are either in the family or outside the family of God no matter how you look at it. You cannot re-write history. Stop inventing Christianity or you have no credibility.

  29. “As regards religions, there have always been many different pagan religions but only ONE TRUE RELIGION. The real tragedy is that the Protestants split off from the Church established by Christ on Peter (Matthew 16:18 )”

    And almost equally as sad that the Bishop of Rome split off from the rest of the Church 500 years before the Protestants.

    At the beginning the Bishop of Rome was always accorded the honors of “first among equals” but there wasn’t any one single head of the Church. The Bishop of Rome kept pushing it that way rather than relying on church councils and this is one of the things which lead to the Roman Chruch schisming from what came to be known as the Eastern Orthodox churches.

    “Nothing the Catholic Church believes contradicts anything is scripture and nothing ever will because the Catholic Faith gave birth to the Scripture.”

    There are actually 3 areas where the Catholics do deviate (1) papal infallibility as a dogma, (2) the immaculate conception of Mary, and (3) the filioque, where the Bishop of Rome changed the Creed without approval from the rest of the Church to state that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the son while the original creed and scripture states only that the Spirit proceeds from the Father.

  30. -The “filioque” was put into effect to clear away any misconceptions about the nature of the Trinity. People at the time were diverting and believing that Jesus was not one with the Father and did not exist beforehand.- that he was created and not begotten.
    There’s nothing heretical about refining the creed to combat misconceptions.
    -The Immaculate Conception is just plain logic. Jesus could never have been born from sin. Therefore, God kept her from sin.

  31. Rachel, you have been doing your homework.

    Doulos, Here we come to interpretation again only this time it is the interpretation of events. We interpret these event just the opposite of you. The orhtodox churches left the Catholic Church.

    Also my understanding is that the Eastern Orthodox churches believe in Mary’s immaculate conception but they don’t have a dogma about it. Is that correct?

  32. Yes, the filioque doesn’t necessarily have anything theologically wrong with it, the problem came when the Bishop of Rome decided to change the creed without approval from the rest of the Chruch. You have to remember that at this time in history there was no single leader of the Church. The Church decided things in councils, where representatives from the five major patriarchates would get together.

    The rest of the Church resisted this change by one single Patriarch, but there was also some theology in the choice. We have always maintained that the Father is the single source of the other hypostasis, and that it is in the Father that the Spirit and the Word have their being. The Church felt that by stating that the Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, it was interferring with the economy of the Trinity and relegating the Spirit to a lesser place. There’s more complex nuances to the discussion, but I won’t get into them here.

    And I can understand where the idea of the Immaculate Conception came from. It does make sense of the surface that Christ couldn’t have been born ‘from sin’ but think of it this way. The Immaculate Conception is an idea that states that Mary was completely free of any part of Original Sin. If Christ, who was perfect, had to be born free from original sin, then how was Mary able to be born perfect from sinful parents? Would Anna and Joachim need to be free from sin as well? What about their parents? Or theirs? If we follow the seemingly simple logic then it follows that there would have to be line of people kept free from the effects of orignial sin all the way back to Adam and Eve.

    The idea of the Immaculate Conception did not come about until the 11th century. It didn’t become a dogma until 1854. Scripture clearly tells us that the only person free from sin was Christ.

    This isn’t to say that Mary did not commit any sins after birthing Christ or that she didn’t live a holy and righteous life before (there’s an Orthodox tradition that Mary was consecrated from early childhood as a temple virgin), but there is nothing to suggest that Mary was made absolutely impervious to the effects of sin from birth.

    Bfhu, I’m not trying to talk bad about the Catholic Church or implying that it isn’t a Chruch of God, far from it! But history does show that it was the Bishop of Rome who schismed from the true Chruch. Rome was one of 5 Patriarchates. It left the communion of the rest of the Church. The other four Patriarchates still exist and are still doing things the same way things have been done since before the Great Schism, and it is only the Roman church that has deviated and is doing things differently.

    And know, we don’t necessarily believe in the Immaculate Conception. None of the Holy Fathers teach the idea and in fact at the theological level we are oppossed to it. It might be true though that those who have live in the Western world and who are not involved in depth in the theology might believe in it and have been influenced by the Roman Chruch’s hold in the western world, but the Church herself is against the idea.

    • I believe the Bishop of Rome was head of the Church after Peter. I think you revising Church History.

      • All the other eastern Patriarchs were in heresy one time or another. The Bishop of Rome is/was the only one preserved from errors. That’s real history.

  33. Doulos,
    The Eastern Churches fell into heresy frequently and Rome did not leave or split from the Easterns.

    The Immaculate Conception was always believed and enshrined in Dogma
    In 1854 only b/c the inroads of Protestantism caused confusion among the faithful.

    The Immaculate Conception is an idea that states that Mary was completely free of any part of Original Sin. If Christ, who was perfect, had to be born free from original sin, then how was Mary able to be born perfect from sinful parents?

    Mary was not given the gift of sinlessness from her conception in order that Jesus could be born sinless. Mary’s purity from all stain of sin was fitting for the woman who’s womb would nurture the All Holy Eternal Son and God/Man .

    Would Anna and Joachim need to be free from sin as well?

    No. Mary was created free from the stain of Original Sin by a singular act of God.

  34. I think theres a metaphor about this:
    Say a person was walking and they fell in a deep pit. If someone else gave that person a rope they would be saved. Now say that before the person fell into the pit, that other person grabbed them first. Someone (God)still had to intervene in both cases. God intervened by saving Mary from sin in the first place.

  35. Unfortunately the Immaculate Conception is not an idea that has always been believed. This is not theological opinion, but historical fact.

    However, I’m not trying to say that it’s a “heretical” dogma in the sense that believing in it would lead to a loss of grace, no, I don’t believe that all. Just that it’s not scriptural, and it’s not traditional, and only found in the West near to the start of, and the prominently after the Great Schism. It has its basis in the the theology of St. Augustine and how we envisions original sin.

    The Roman Catholic Church teaches that original sin is something that transmitted from generation to generation, some ‘thing’ which gets passed along. It believes that we are held accountable for the sin of Adam. One of the consequences is that the Western Church then had to explain how Mary could birth God if she was tainted by this original sin.

    However the Eastern Chruches don’t believe in the same formulation of original sin. We believe that we are only held accountable for our own individual sin. If God is just, then why hold us accountable for a sin not committed by us? However, we believe that we inherit the effects of that original sin, namely subjugation to the passions and ultimately death.

    With this formulation there was never any need to justify Mary’s giving birth to God.

    While we don’t believe that Mary was a priori saved from ever even being capable of sinning due to not inheriting the original sin (in the Augustinian formulation) we do believe that she lived a life free of sin after she was born.

    The Eastern Churches fell into heresy frequently and Rome did not leave or split from the Easterns. What heresies? And we can debate who left who all we want and not get anywhere. The history is there. It was the Bishop of Rome who first laid a bull of excommunication, though if I remember correctly it wasn’t the Pope himself, but rather the Pope’s messanger, even though the Pope hadn’t gone ahead and given his explicit approval. I was Catholic before converting to Orthodoxy so please believe that I made the decision extremely seriously and only after long research and prayer.

    But anyways, what frequent heresies have we fallen into?

  36. That’s cool with me. I had a lot of questions before I became Catholic (I used to be Evangelical) I still have much learning to go. Perhaps we are more similar than we thought.

  37. Doulos: What frequent heresies have we (Eastern Orthodox) fallen into?

    BFHU:
    Arius and Arianism-From Alexandria and Lybia

    Nestorius and Nestorianism-From Syria

    Docetism-arose in the diocese of Antioch

    Apollinarius and Apollinarians from Laodicia
    Theodotus-Modalists/Sabellians/Monarchians/adoptianism–From Byzantium
    Gnosticism-pagan and predated Christianity but became a Christian heresy in western Asia,Syria, Alexandria
    Timothy Ælurus Monophysitsm/momothelitism from Alexandria/Egypt
    Ebion and Ebionites a gnostic heresy from Bashan
    Marcion and Marcionism-Asia Minor
    Manichaeism-Mani-Persia

    Some of these infected the West as well but they tended to persist longer in the East and of course there were heresies from the West as well but the most widespread and long lasting were of Eastern origin. The East has a long history of holy priests, bishops and fathers of the Church. I could not tell you why the heresies tended to arise from Easterns or what it really means…

  38. Ah, but all of those heresies arose before the schism, were put down by the united Church, so it’s unfair to say that the Eastern Orthodox Churches have ‘frequently fallen into heresey” while the Roman Catholic Chruch hasn’t.

    As to their area of origin, I would say it probably has to do with the Western Church being largely cut off from the rest of Christiandom after Constantine moved the captial to Byzantium (the other four Patriarchates are also in the east) so Rome was a little out of the loop. Also, the East tends to be more experiential, more philosophical whereas the West tends to be more juridical and law-driven.

  39. And if we want to be completely fair about the Schism between East and West, the fact that Rome was so cut off from the rest of Christiandom is what probably ultimately lead to the diverging views. It was much easier for the other four Patriarchates to communicate in a shorter amount of time than it was with Rome.

  40. Hi,

    I was born Catholic and have a long tradition on both sides of my family. I haven’t been to Church for quite some time nor lived the right lifestyle. I want to change that. I don’t really even remember much about the process but I have picked up a bible and am learning the Rosary prayers. I have two primary questions in my quest to find the path:

    1. What book should I be reading? I see a lot of commentary about the cannonized bible and am not sure which book this is. King James?

    2. I am no longer familiar with the Church and want to feel comfortable. Is there a way that someone who is not a convert can reconnect?

    Thanks

  41. RMF,
    Thanks for your comment. In order to return you only need to go to confession. Tell the priest your story. He will help you with any particulars. Canonization is simply the process of authoritatively deciding which NT books to include. The Catholic Church simply received the Greek Old Testament from the Jews which was also included in the official list of infallible books of the Bible. The King James Version is a Protestant English translation that currently is missing seven books from the Old Testament.

    You should probably get a Catholic translation. I recommend the Revised Standard Version-Catholic Edition. There is also a Protestant edition but it too is missing seven OT books removed by Martin Luther 500 years ago.

    I would recommend that you read perhaps a collection of conversion stories by Catholics who left the Church and then returned. A Rebel Returns to the Catholic Faith: The Conversion Story of Jeff Cavins

    Hmmm….I thought I had seen a book or two of reversion stories but can’t find one to link to here. The reversion stories of Catholics who returned to the Catholic Church will probably offer you points that you can identify with. Even Protestant conversion stories like the three Surprised by Truth books.

    To understand your faith better I would recommend
    Beginning Apologetics 1

    An amazing and inspiring book of Jewish conversion stories
    Honey From the Rock The editor of this book, Roy Schoeman, a Jewish convert has a website where you can access these conversion stories too.

    You might find this forum interesting.
    Coming Home Network

    This is an excellent website and you can even ask them for personal answers. Response time may be a bit slow b/c they are busy.
    Catholic Answers

    Well that should be more than enough to get you started. No I don’t own stock in Amazon :) You might be able to get some of these books from your library. You can get a cheaper Catholic Bible New American Bible I just don’t like the translation very well.

  42. I really enjoyed reading your story. I am going through RCIA right now so I can be Baptized and Confirmed at the Easter Vigil. Six months ago I was really scared that God was calling me to be Catholic, because you know, they are crazy Mary worshipers, at least that is what the Protestants told me. Now I am really excited and so thankful that God has shown me the truth of the Catholic Church.

  43. I would love to hear your story.

  44. Psa 103:20 Bless the LORD, you His angels, Mighty in strength, who perform His word, Obeying the voice of His word!

    Jer 23:18 “But who has stood in the council of the LORD, That he should see and hear His word? Who has given heed to His word and listened?

    Lam 2:17 The LORD has done what He purposed; He has accomplished His word Which He commanded from days of old. He has thrown down without sparing, And He has caused the enemy to rejoice over you; He has exalted the might of your adversaries.

    ********Joh 5:38 “You do not have His word abiding in you, for you do not believe Him whom He sent. *********

    Roman Cathlicos are mistaken on Sola Scriptura John 5:38 is proof

    Roman Catholics abide in Roman peganism not in the slpending of His Word.

    1Jn 2:4 The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;
    1Jn 2:5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him:
    1Jn 2:6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.
    ******1Jn 2:7 Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard.*****

    His commandments? and were do we find These ?

    ???????????????????????????????????

  45. roboman:

    John 5:38 doesn’t prove anything. We totally agree with all the scripture you have quoted here. So, there is nothing here to prove that the Catholic Faith is wrong or contradictory to scripture.

    You begin with a conviction that we are wrong or pagan and then judge our beliefs. Then you find verses that warn to bolster your prior opinion.

    If you have a scripture that directly contradicts our faith we would be interested in hearing what you think it is. Sola Scriptura is a Protestant tradition of men, invented by Martin Luther a mere 500 years ago.

  46. You said that Sola Scriptura cant found in the Bible , Catholics claim that the Word of God is not the athority.

    Scripture Interprets Scripture Based on Divine Revelation wich means there is no Revalation inless Scripture Interprets Scripture , The word is the Authority in Heaven and on earth.

    All of Pauls teachings esp. in Romans is based on this 1/2 of Romans are quotes from the Old Testiment. and Hebrews there’s even more. Thats divine Revelation being fullfilled. Not through a buliding in Rome but of the Holy Spirit.

    Num 11:23 The LORD said to Moses, “Is the LORD’S power limited? Now you shall see whether My word will come true for you or not.”

    • Roboman,

      Correction: Roman Catholics certainly DO claim that the word of God is infallible and has great authority. We do not believe Scripture is the ONLY authority. But no Catholic doctrine may contradict anything in scripture. And it does not. The only thing it contradicts is various Protestant interpretations of scripture.

      The problem for sola scriptura Protestants is that they claim scripture is their only authority and yet the doctrine of sola scriptura can NOT be found anywhere in scripture. That is because it is a man made doctrine.

  47. All the Dogmas written by the Early Saints were also Just mere men. Wernt they not?

  48. Sola gratia

    Roman Catholics belive Grace has too be imputed from a Priest From The Roman Catholic faith. This acuall condericts scriuptrure.

    “We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. (Gal. 2:15-16). ”

    1Pe 5:10 After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

    God is the one to establish you in Grace not a Roman Cathlic Priest

    • God’s grace is communicated through the priest but that is not the only method and it does not contradict scripture.

      Again the verses you quote are wonderful but they don’t contradict our Catholic Faith.

  49. Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Solus Christus

  50. Soli Deo gloria

    The reformers believed that human beings—even saints canonized by the Roman Catholic Church, the popes, and the ecclesiastical hierarchy—are not worthy of the glory that was accorded them. That is that one should not exalt such humans for their good works, but rather praise and give glory to God who is the author and perfecter of these people and their good works.

    The Glory is of God
    Not men

    • That may have been their opinion but upon what scripture did they base this?

      The Saints are ordinary human beings who lived lives of heroic virtue. We recognize them and honor them as examples to inspire us to live holy lives. That is all.
      We both admire the Saints and praise and give glory to God who is the author and perfector of the Saints and all people’s good works.

  51. You still have not pointedly given me one scripture that contradicts one Catholic Doctrine.

    I don’t exactly know what you are hoping to accomplish which such a long list of scriptures. We love the Bible. We believe the Bible. We canonized the Bible. Without the Catholic Church you would not have a New Testament.

    I think you may be trying to hide the fact that you cannot find any scripture, just ONE at a time, that contradicts our Faith with a cloud of obfuscating scripture references that no one is going to look up.

  52. “It is impossible to be just to the Catholic Church. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it. But when that affection has passed a certain point it begins to take on the tragic and menacing grandeur of a great love affair.”

    -G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

    AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sister!
    God Bless you today and always! :) Ally

  53. I thank God for your testimony and how it has led me, together with a visit to Walsingham back to the true Church and out of pentecostalism.

  54. Wow! Thanks for letting us know. I would love to hear your story.

  55. My Story. Hmm that would take a website and a lot of time which I don’t seem able to find – but I don’t discount it. It’s ben a long and grace filled journey and while, I acknowledge that I have learnt a lot from Protestant Churches, the joy of praise, the importance of regular Bible Study and exegesis [I use the New Jerome Commentary] the centrality of prayer there has always been something in Protestantism that has sounded a discordant note and has truly been the work of men – often men of hubris. Either the Holy Spirit’s actions have been tied to speaking in tongues to prove that one has received it – in direct contradiction and understanding of Acts and Corinthians, or Baptism as adults by immersion only [a seductive teaching, well intentioned] has been necessary for church membership or creationism [young earth, literal reading of Genesis] has been essential to Church membership and ALL THESE and many other errors the result of reading without guidance of The Church and Tradition. The Roman Catholic Church alone stands alone as a beacon to God’s saving power through Christ by the Holy Spirit.

  56. Thanks for the little snippet. You are right their intentions are good and they have no idea what they are missing. I didn’t. but I am so happy to have been recieved by the Church.

    • ‘I didn’t. but I am so happy to have been recieved by the Church.’

      Amen to that. It’s quite worrying to think how both of us have a background that makes it possible to know nothing of the first 400 years of Christianity isn’t it? But so much time and emphasis is put on the centrality of sola scriptura, as well as the particular creeds and dogmas of the different types of protestantism that it’s possible to have no time to question or research. Your daughter’s attendance at a Catholic university was indeed providential.

      • Yes, and the one time, many years before my conversion, I did a little research about exactly how the Bible was canonized. Something scared me about it and I stopped and ignored it and trusted what I had been told in spite of what I found. I don’t remember really what it was that scared me but I bet it had something to do with the fact that the Catholic Church canonized the Bible. I just turned away and put my blinders back on. Until my daughter went off to a Catholic University.

  57. Its by His Grace and nothing else.the Church is not above or even has equal athority than His master. The Roman Catholic Church. Has pit It self higher than The master ‘Jesus. Jesus even said the Athority has been given to me by My Father.

    If you can Show me in Scriptrue were the Church , His Fleshy Body. 1 corith 12: 12-26 , is more Important than the Head , than show it. Without the Head Jesus , the Body would be totlly dead. The Roman Cathlic runs around with its Head cut off thats why , it has very liltte power any more.

    • Roboman: Its by His Grace and nothing else.

      BFHU: Absolutely!

      Roboman: the Church is not above or even has equal athority than His master.

      BFHU: Again we totally agree with this statement!

      Roboman: The Roman Catholic Church. Has pit It self higher than The master Jesus.

      BFHU: No! No! No! A thousand times NO! The Church is NOT higher than Our Lord Our God! Who told you that???? Someone is lying to you about our beliefs.

      Roboman: Jesus even said the Athority has been given to me by My Father.

      BFHU: Again we agree with this. However, you have forgotten that Jesus told His disciples:

      Luke 9:1 When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.

      Luke 10:19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome ALL the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.

      Roboman: If you can Show me in Scriptrue were the Church , His Fleshy Body. 1 corith 12: 12-26 , is more Important than the Head , than show it.

      BFHU: We don’t believe that the Church is more important than Christ. But where do you find the scriptural authority to demand that all things must be found in Scripture?

      Roboman: Without the Head Jesus , the Body would be totlly dead.

      BFHU:That is true.

      Roboman: The Roman Cathlic runs around with its Head cut off thats why , it has very liltte power any more.

      BFHU: What do you base such an uncharitable accusation upon?

  58. Roboman: By His grace and by the faith that flows from His grace. I have no argument with that. You are obviously following your own agenda – without a spellcheck.

  59. Ecc 12:9 In addition to being a wise man, the Preacher also taught the people knowledge; and he pondered, searched out and arranged many proverbs.
    Ecc 12:10 The Preacher sought to find delightful words and to write words of truth correctly.
    Ecc 12:11 The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd.
    Ecc 12:12 But beyond this, my son, be warned: the writing of many books is endless, and excessive devotion to books is wearying to the body.
    Ecc 12:13 The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.
    Ecc 12:14 For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.

    The Words were written down , and came from one Shepherd. That Shepard none other the God Himself

    Father , Son and Holy Spirt.

  60. Eternal Security?
    Salvation is a deposit and it is sealed
    In others words Salvation is not complete from the point of being reborn, We have a new relationship with God through Jesus and we know were stand with God. We know of are sin and We belive He cleans us and the Hope is in His Resurrection.

    Its by Faith through Grace that I Believe

    Faith and Grace acually come from Him , but thats anther debate.

    Once saved always saved?
    Who teches that?
    Not Reformers

    We now being reborn into Him we belong to Him , even if one day you diceded to be a Athist, You still belong to Him. The Bible teches about Aposty or those that have fallen away.

    Sounds Like Hyper-Calvism , Wich isnt what Calvin Taught, they were things Added by others,

  61. The Catholic Church does not place itself higher than Christ. From your many, many comments you obviously have more time, and a closed mind, than I have. I wish you peace and illumination. For me this conversation is closed.

  62. Roboman: This Percept is From Jesus Himself not from Men.

    BFHU:The Catholic Church heartily agrees with every verse you have quoted. But, you still have not shown me a scriptural verse or passage that clearly says that Scripture is the only source of the truths and doctrines of our Faith.

    Roboman: This is what is taught in reformed circles.

    BFHU: Yes this is what is taught in reformed circles. But it is NOT to be found taught in the Bible anywhere.

    Roboman: NOT that the Magisterial(Interpatation handed down in the form of tradition) Has Equal Authority.

    BFHU: Of course the aurthority of the Magisterium is not taught in Reformed circles. Then they would abdicate their authority and power.

    Roboman:Your own catechism teaches that the earthly Authority (Roman Catholic Church)as Jesus Equal they are “Hand in Hand one can not stand with out the other.” That’s a direct Quote.”

    BFHU: Where is this quote? I would need to see it in context.

    Roboman: Other words Jesus ( The only Begotten of the Father) Cant stand without the Roman Cattholic Church? The Roman Catholic Church teaches that they are equal to Jesus.

    BFHU: Jesus founded the Catholic Church. But we do not believe that the Church is equal to Jesus. That is ridiculous. Someone has taught you a boatload of lies about the Catholic Church.

    Roboman: Reform Protestantism Teaches Humenertics is the point of interpatation,Mat 13:52

    BFHU: Hermenutics is a discipline of interpretation but it is not infallible. Do you think you can infallibly interpret scripture? Can your pastor? Can Calvin?

  63. And by the way My Pastor has more qualifications to teach the Word of God than Most Catholics Bishops.

    Not Just his education but his famliy life, his charactor.
    his charactor, not his collar!

    • You have got to be kidding. Our priests and bishops are highly educated. Tell me exactly what your pastors qualifications are and why they supercede the eduction and holiness of the lives of our bishops. Yes we have some bishops who have made serious mistakes but so have many Protestant pastors. So let’s stick to the educational deficiencies you are so convinced our bishops have.

  64. Ecc 12:9 In addition to being a wise man, the Preacher also taught the people knowledge; and he pondered, searched out and arranged many proverbs.
    Ecc 12:10 The Preacher sought to find delightful words and to write words of truth correctly.
    Ecc 12:11 The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd.
    Ecc 12:12 But beyond this, my son, be warned: the writing of many books is endless, and excessive devotion to books is wearying to the body.
    Ecc 12:13 The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.
    Ecc 12:14 For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.

    The Words were Written Down, The Words Through many preachers , came from ONE Shepherd.
    Jesus Chirst.
    Are Lord ,
    Amen

  65. I know how deficient the average free reformed pastor’s education is, something that Roboman doesn’t seem able, or is unwilling to address. ‘Education’ can be as little as having a good fundamentalist background in ‘Bible Study’ and preaching that leads a church to elect him as minister or as much as two to three years at a Bible Study college which is usually connected to the church [The Assembly Of God is a case in point] without any external degres or qualifications.

    Not exactly on a par with a Roman Catholic seminary.

  66. REV ALFRED EDERSHEIM, M.A.OXON., D.D., PH.D.

    This guy Back in he 1800s taught Catholic Priest at Oxford.

    Sometime Grinfield Lecturer on the Septuagint in the University of Oxford.
    Edersheim, Alfred: The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah.

  67. As a presbyterian don’t you believe in predestination?
    If true, you might be waisting your time with us anyway!?
    Right?
    Ally

  68. Predestination

    Not sure were this falls in the conversation.

    Predestination is those who are predestined to come to the Cross, Jesus has already chosen those.

    Most non Reformers, (Presbyterian is form of Church government.) (Reform is a Theological view point not a denomanation).
    Think that Calvin meant that all things are predestinate this isn’t true.

    When we are redeemed in Jesus the original sin of are first parents is gone we have Free will again for we are no longer a slave to sin. Predestination is about those that will come to the Cross. Jesus chooses us not other way around. If God has plain for us Jer. 29:11
    We have a choice that the path with Jesus or the path that leads really know were.(Sin) each Path is predestined. God is the author and finisher of are faith.

  69. In otherwords after the state of redemtion with Jesus you get to choose to die to sin every day and walk with with Jesus , to pick up your Cross and follow Him. Or worship dumb idols agin. Rituals , money, sex, Religion etc………….

    What ever path you choose there’s a predestined out come.

    Your next question will be does that mean I can loose my salvation?

    No !
    Because your Salvation is a Depost and sealed.

    Meaning You always belong to Jesus , if you choose the path of sin agin , You still belong to Him. Jesus holds the keys to Heven and Hades. Your Jugdment will be one based on the life you lived on earth.
    Not a cleasing in prugatory.

    You will stand before Him and Give Him a Account , and The Word that was given to you by Him (2000 years ago) will Judge you. For He is the Word.

  70. Predestination … because I have a friend who is presb. and said to preach to any of us was a lost cause. So, I am wondering why you are preaching (of course, I am a protestant she is talking to)

    My apologies to your conversation. It doesn’t have anything to do with what you were previously talking about. I just am not understanding why you would go to a Catholic Blog and talk about how qualified Presb. pastors are and
    how under qualified Catholic leaders are.

    Roboman:

    “In otherwords after the state of redemtion with Jesus you get to choose to die to sin every day and walk with with Jesus , to pick up your Cross and follow Him. Or worship dumb idols agin. Rituals , money, sex, Religion etc……”

    ???????What

    Ally

  71. Dear Pam,

    God has a plan for all of us and it was obviously a part of His plan to have me stumble upon your blog and poignant conversion story. As a cradle Catholic I have taken my faith for granted for many years but I always secretly wished for the transformative experience of conversion that many born agains talk about. Intellectually Ive always been Catholic but spiritually not so much. I have been given a second chance in Christ through the readings of reverts and converts to Catholicism like yourself and I weep with joy in reading your story and understanding why God led me to it. It is fitting this occurs in our holiest of seasons and I look forward to tonights Vigil and Easter Sunday with a rediscovered sense of purpose and rededication to my faith.

    Thank you for sharing your story and playing your part in God’s plan for me

  72. Thank you. I too am looking forward to this Holy week’s celebrations.

  73. Pam, I cannot express the sense of peace and excitement I feel after having read your conversion story and several of your articles. Your site is exactly what I have been praying for. I will share it with everyone! Thank you for your perseverance and steadfast longing to share the truth to all who have ears. You are a blessing to our Catholic community.

  74. What i don’t understand is how you guys can ignore how evil the church has been in the past. They have killed millions of people just for having the bible. Were they just ignoring Christ then for a little while?

    Some of the popes even wore a crown that said ‘ I take the place of almighty god’. If Catholic churches are following the bible so rightly how come the head of the church is called the father? that is a sin correct? Calling your self god? Some popes even sold parchments that remitted all sin but all you had to do was pay for it. The pope controls what happens on earth, in heaven and in hell… what? Also mary a saint?.. What happened to Jesus saying theres not one man on earth who is good.. not even one… Jesus also said that mary had no spirtual ‘plus’ over anyone else. Why do you people pray to her now? isnt that idoltry praying to a person a object anything other than god him self? sigh

    I apologize if I may come off as ignorant… I just am trying to learn about the history of every religion and so far I am heavily non denomination christian… All I do every day is pray to god all day and follow the commandments as closely as i can learn them…

    why is the person who wrote this story so interested about eating his flesh and blood?

    • Thanks for your apology. When I returned to the Catholic Faith after several years of absence, I decided to learn more about it from its friends. Most of the things I learned about the Faith from its enemies were either distortions or simply untrue. I have since discovered that most people ultimately believe what they want to believe. Very few seem to seek the truth above all else. People like Scott Hahn, Patti Bonds, and Pam Forrester all had strongly vested interest in not becoming Catholic. These people and millions like them are not ignorant of the Truth.

  75. What i don’t understand is how you guys can ignore how evil the church has been in the past.

    BFHU: Catholics have done evil and so have Protestants. Just like it is not the Protestant Christian faith that condones evil, so it is not the Catholic Faith that condones evil. The recent sex scandal of priests of the Catholic Faith was evil but it was not condoned/approved by the Catholic Church. There is a very big difference.

    They have killed millions of people just for having the bible.

    BFHU: That is not true.

    Were they just ignoring Christ then for a little while?

    BFHU: The members of the Catholic Church can and do ignore Christ but the Church and those in authority do not ignore Christ. The Church is not a controlling dictatorship that is able or willing to controll the behavior of all of its members. God does not do that and the Church does not do that. God created Adam and Eve and look at what they did with their free will. Jesus chose Judas and look what he did with his free will. The Catholic Church owns all of her members. She does not have the luxury of leaving behind the less savory members and starting a new church like the Protestants are able to do.

    Some of the popes even wore a crown that said ‘ I take the place of almighty god’.

    BFHU: Can you prove this please. I don’t think this is true b/c it is not remotely like anything we believe.

    If Catholic churches are following the bible so rightly how come the head of the church is called the father?

    BFHU: What is wrong with that? Paul called himself a father. We are merely following the apostles lead.

    that is a sin correct?

    BFHU: No.

    Calling your self god?

    BFHU: Calling yourself god would be a sin. But no one but a heretic in the Catholic Church would call himself god. Where are you getting this stuff?

    Some popes even sold parchments that remitted all sin but all you had to do was pay for it.

    BFHU: That is not true. It may be a huge distortion of indulgences.

    The pope controls what happens on earth, in heaven and in hell… what?

    BFHU: If he could do that we would be living in a heaven on earth. Who told you that? You are being lied to deliberately or accidentally.

    Also mary a saint?..

    BFHU: Yes, Mary is a Saint.

    What happened to Jesus saying theres not one man on earth who is good.. not even one…

    BFHU: Jesus did not say that.

    Jesus also said that mary had no spirtual ‘plus’ over anyone else.

    BFHU: Jesus did not say that either. That is your interpretation. We interpret it differently.

    Why do you people pray to her now? isnt that idoltry praying to a person a object anything other than god him self? sigh

    BFHU: We ask her to interecede for us. We do not believe that she by her own power answers our prayers but she joins her prayer to ours and God and God alone answers our prayer. No, asking for the intercessory prayer of other Christians is not idolotry where on earth did you get that idea? We do not pray to objects or worship anyone but God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

    I apologize if I may come off as ignorant… I just am trying to learn about the history of every religion and so far I am heavily non denomination christian… All I do every day is pray to god all day and follow the commandments as closely as i can learn them…

    BFHU: There is so much hatred of the Catholic Church out there that has been innocently picked up and swallowed whole by many other Christians of good will. You need to find out what the Catholic Church actually believes from FAITHFUL, Knowledgable Catholics.I would recommend Catholicism vs Fundamentalism by Karl Keating and then By What Authority by Mark Shea.

    why is the person who wrote this story so interested about eating his flesh and blood?

    BFHU: I wrote the conversion story. And I just want to obey Jesus and all that He said in John 6

    I want to eat the Body and Blood of Jesus so that:
    I won’t die
    I will live forever
    I can have Eternal Life
    I can be raised up at the last day
    I want true food and drink
    I want to abide in Jesus
    I want to live

    You should desire His Body and Blood also so that you too may have all of these benefits..

  76. Why do Roman Catholics ask the dead to intercede for them?

    The only true Intercessory is Jesus because he lives forever. Or did the Second resurrection happen and we all missed it?

    There is no were in the O.T.or the N.T. to ask for Intercessory from the dead. ONly a few short passeges in the Apocrypha wich is disputed by Jews and Protestants.

    Tell me why such paganism?

  77. Roboman,
    When we die only our bodies die, our souls go to judgment. Unlike out bodies our souls are immortal. Our bodies will be resurrected at the Second Coming. So all the souls of the Saints and the saints are ALIVE in Eternity. This is not paganism. We are all a part of the Body of Christ and have communion through Him. Those in Eternity are enabled to hear our prayer requests through the power of God.

    So far only Jesus and Mary are alive body and soul in Heaven. There is no Bible verse that contradicts Catholic theology. There is however, merely Protestant theology and interpretation but no scripture.

  78. “Mary alive body and soul in Heaven.?”
    Weres that in Scriptrue? I dont think thats even in the
    Apocrypha.

    Your intrpatation is very gnostic in its ideas. Is the Body bad? The Body doent count ? The Body cant become Holy?
    Paul had a very differnt view.

  79. Dear Roboman,

    Mary alive body and soul in Heaven.?”

    BFHU:Yes that is historical. We know this from eye witness accounts. Plus, there are no relics of Mary’s body and no burial site and the Catholic church would have kept track of those things for sure.

    Weres that in Scriptrue? I dont think thats even in the
    Apocrypha.

    BFHU:It is not in Scripture. But we are not bound to believe only those things that are found in Scripture because this Protestant Doctrine of Sola Scriptura is itself NOT SCRIPTURAL. It is a tradition of men begun by Martin Luther a mere 500 years ago.

    Your intrpatation is very gnostic in its ideas.

    BFHU:Not at all, gnostic

    .

    Is the Body bad?

    BFHU:No the Body will be resurrected at the end of time and our souls will be reunited for eternity with out bodies in Heaven or Hell.

  80. Sola Scriptura is at lest based on a Biblical assumtion, were as Mary being Resurrected is pure Fantasy. Theres no no assumtion there at all.

    Were there appearances of the 12 after they were marterd or Died I dont think so. Nodody has ever saw Paul or John or Stephen or Luke or Mark or Peter.

    The only the Biblical percept you could start your point of assumption in Jesus Himself.

    There are 2 others Jona, and Lazarus. They never asended to Heaven and then retruned they were just brought Back to life.

    Enoch and Elijah Ascended to Heaven without dyeing.

    You first have to have a Biblical assumtion as a starting point. Then you have to check all other material based in context of your assumtion. Then if you a moved from the assumtion then it becomes a percept , Then your precept is tested by a process of theology exegesis or hermeneutics. Then you can examine people’s experiences to see if it’s true. If people are having experiences then your percept can become a Doctrine over time. You just cant base it from experiences , you have to have radical dialog , not closed door session within the Vatican. Jesus Preached publicly and openly.

  81. Roboman,

    Sorry, but all of what you assert here is merely your own opinion. Therefore, I am not bound by your opinion.

  82. Its not opinion. , Its base on a process of truth , And used in most Seminarys Even Catholic my friend. Its know as the “process of Interpretation of the Bible.”

    “Catholic exegesis does not claim any particular scientific method as its own. It recognizes that one of the aspects of biblical texts is that they are the work of human authors, who employed both their own capacities for expression and the means which their age and social context put at their disposal. Consequently Catholic exegesis freely makes use of the scientific methods and approaches which allow a better grasp of the meaning of texts in their linguistic, literary, sociocultural, religious and historical contexts, while explaining them as well through studying their sources and attending to the personality of each author (cf. Divino Afflante Spiritu: Ench. Bibl. 557). Catholic exegesis actively contributes to the development of new methods and to the progress of research. ”

    Patristic Exegesis

    . Principal Guidelines

    In devoting themselves to their task, Catholic exegetes have to pay due account to the historical character of biblical revelation. For the two testaments express in human words bearing the stamp of their time the historical revelation communicated by God in various ways concerning himself and his plan of salvation. Consequently, exegetes have to make use of the historical-critical method. They cannot, however, accord to it a sole validity. All methods pertaining to the interpretation of texts are entitled to make their contribution to the exegesis of the Bible.

    In their work of interpretation Catholic exegetes must never forget that what they are interpreting is the word of God. Their common task is not finished when they have simply determined sources, defined forms or explained literary procedures. They arrive at the true goal of their work only when they have explained the meaning of the biblical text as God’s word for today. To this end they must take into consideration the various hermeneutical perspectives which help toward grasping the contemporary meaning of the biblical message and which make it responsive to the needs of those who read Scripture today.

    Exegetes should also explain the Christological, canonical and ecclesial meanings of the biblical texts.

    2. Exegesis and Systematic Theology

    Without being the sole locus theologicus, sacred Scripture provides the privileged foundation of theological studies. In order to interpret Scripture with scholarly accuracy and precision, theologians need the work of exegetes. From their side, exegetes must orientate their research in such fashion that “the study of sacred Scripture” can be in reality “as it were the soul of theology” (Dei Verbum, 24). To achieve this, they ought pay particular attention to the religious content of the biblical writings.

    Presented by the Pontifical Biblical Commission
    to Pope John Paul II on April 23, 1993

  83. Roboman,
    That is all fine. What you don’t seem to realize is that Catholics and Protestants can both interpret the exact same Biblical passage differently. You have been making assertions and asserting that they are scriptural but you have not given us any scripture that backs up what you are saying. But, first, you must find scripture that proves to us that all religious Truth MUST be found in Scripture alone.

  84. This is the same process Luther and other Reformers used and still use Protestant theologians make use of the Original languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek) more because the Original languages tells us more about the culture and ideology of that day. Protestants are usually more Critical and literal in their process. Not say Catholics theologians don’t use these sources.

    If Protestants dont use the same process then it is Heresy. Most Backyard Protestants pastors don’t have a clue. You should always look at what Seminary the Protestant theologian went to.What denomination He or she as been ordained with. and other Degrees they hold. And are they really commited to Ecumitacal discovery.

    “religious “Truth MUST be found in Scripture alone

    To you its based on the Tradition of a Religious Empire of Men.

    “Me its base on the Holy Sprit”
    “Kingdom living vs, Empire”
    To quote a Catholic Monk

    O! and Jesus Himself

    John 3:5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

    religious Truth are not found in the Bible;
    Only how God has revealed himself to man through History. And the Princable of God through Jesus the ONly begotten is the way to Savation. Not religious Truth controled by men.

    But the Revelation of God Himself.
    Who died for us; to give Himself to us; so we would give are selfs to Him ;so we would give ourselfs to each other. This can only happen through Revelation , not through the traditions of men.

    “But, first, you must find scripture that proves ”

    Scriptrue is not going to give you “carnel proof which is what your really asking.
    Its based on faith , that faith is based on the Revelation Of God through Scriptrue. Jesus is the Word , therefore its through Jesus that I Believein the book. That tells of His words and His LIfea nd His Death, and His Resurrection. The Book tells me about the Life giving Spirit.
    Not confusing Fantasies to market a dieing Assembly.

  85. Perhaps it would be more edifying for both sides if we spent some of our efforts on the glorious truths that we hold in common. Our God created the universe out of nothing, and this world is so tiny in comparison to the rest of creation that it takes a fair amount of faith to believe that humankind could be much more than an afterthought of the Divine mind. That is, until we are given the grace to believe that the same Creator made the incredibly humbling decision to be born as one of us, to actually become part of His creation. It’s hard not to have at least a little sympathy for the Jews, since their understanding of God was so other-worldly that even Moses could not be in the Holy of Holies with Him at the same time and live. The presence of God in the person of Jesus was eminently survivable, even for the humble virgin, though it’s hard for me to imagine she didn’t need some special graces for her part in the Incarnation.
    God bless.

  86. Roboman,

    I see that you have still not presented us a passage in Scripture that teaches that all religious truth must come from Scripture alone. I hope that you are beginning to realize that Sola Scriptura is a tradition of men.

  87. You didn’t read my post I see,
    You are causing division and strife here, no real Dialog
    YOU CANT PROVE THE SIGHTING OF MARY AT ALL, because you have no assumption from a Biblical stand point. So it’s not even possible.
    Scripture said to test every thing by His word.
    And taking that on Faith to what end, Did Mary Die for you can Mary take sins away Can she give the Holy Spirit. Can she give exo-cea? Can she transform life? She is one of many beloved church mothers and the earthly mother Jesus.
    What’s the point here BFHU.
    Why have faith in an assumption, why not the real deal Jesus
    Your statements prove by your own words you don’t Know Jesus, if you did you would understand Faith even in its smallest Idea. God can be known, the giving of His Spirit through Jesus and the Revelation of God which is the Bible. Not anything else, not a set of rituals or rights created by Men, Not by sacrificing millions of bulls and sheep.

    • Roboman,

      You didn’t read my post I see,

      BFHU: I did read it.

      You are causing division and strife here, no real Dialog

      BFHU: I disagree. I have repeatedly asked for you to produce scripture to prove your assertion that all religious truth MUST be found in scripture. You have responded with assertion after assertion but no proof of Sola Scriptura. And now b/c you are unable to argue with reason you are resorting to ad hominem attacks that I am causing strife and division. We, Roman Catholics, revere the Sacred Scripture and believe in their infallibilty and that nothing doctrinal may contradict scripture. Much of what you have written blasts the Catholic Church for things we do not believe, or are untrue. The way to have a dialogue is to answer a question I have asked. And I will try to answer your questions.

      YOU CANT PROVE THE SIGHTING OF MARY AT ALL, because you have no assumption from a Biblical stand point.

      BFHU: True the assumption of Mary is not in scripture. But we believe it as based on historical witness testimony. I can’t prove that George Washington was the first president of the United States either. But I believe it b/e there are many eye witnesses.

      However, do not forget that St. John saw Mary in Heaven body and soul it would seem REV 12
      But, here we will most likely differ in our interpretation.

      So it’s not even possible.
      Scripture said to test every thing by His word.

      BFHU: This is true and we certainly do this as well. As I said nothing we believe contradicts anything in Scripture.

      And taking that on Faith to what end, Did Mary Die for you

      BFHU: NO

      can Mary take sins away

      BFHU: NO

      Can she give the Holy Spirit.

      BFHU: NO

      Can she give exo-cea?

      BFHU: HUH?

      Can she transform life?

      BFHU: NOWe never said any of these things. You are putting up a straw man and then demolishing it. But you are not refuting anything in Catholic Doctrine in any substantive way.

      She is one of many beloved church mothers and the earthly mother Jesus.

      BFHU: Yes she is the mother of God.

      What’s the point here BFHU.
      Why have faith in an assumption, why not the real deal Jesus

      BFHU: Why do you imagine that believing in the assumption of Mary (as were Enoch and Elijah) somehow means we are unable to have faith in Jesus?

      Your statements prove by your own words you don’t Know Jesus, if you did you would understand Faith even in its smallest Idea.

      BFHU: What in my words exactly communicate to you that I lack faith?

      God can be known, the giving of His Spirit through Jesus and the Revelation of God which is the Bible. Not anything else, not a set of rituals or rights created by Men, Not by sacrificing millions of bulls and sheep.

      BFHU: I agree. All the graces we receive through the sacraments enables us to stay the course on the journey to Heaven. They nourish our soul and heal the wounds of the Evil One. We know Our Lord through prayer and a personal relationship. We are able to celebrate the sacraments and know God. I do not understand why you think it must be either knowing God or celebrating the sacraments. Why either/or? Why not both?

  88. I have given exhaustively a starting point there Biblical Assumsion (a stating point of reference), that it is Bible is the Authoritative word of God, and a Doctrinal point of Sola-Scripture.
    Back to Seminary Basics
    Doctrine -means teaching or to teach about a Subject that is generally accepted by other teachers.
    First you start with an Assumption that’s Biblical.
    “Jesus is Lord” Paul used this term 2 times.
    Rom 10:9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
    Mat 10:32 So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven,

    Were did Paul get His Ideas? And why do I believe that this statement is true?
    There is starting assumption. But this isn’t Doctrine yet now through a process of Logic and reason, the study of Paul’s character the History and culture, the study of Jesus, Jesus Character from New and Old Testament form the Stand point of Revelation (It also has to be reveled to the theologian by the Spirit). An Original Languages study, Exegesis, hermeneutics, there are other methods in theology to test your assumption, Liberation theology, to see if others have or can experience and believe this also.
    Once observed and tested Now I have precept “ Jesus is Lord” If others start using the method of discovery and process I use to examines this and tech it to others, Then this is a Doctrine, others might even discover more than I did, the Spirit might have shown them something , that I didn’t see. Just as long they used the same process, the new information can be added if they used a different method and a different process. Then their examination isn’t base on a known Doctrine but they have started a new assumption it starts all over again.

    Do you understand the process of interpitaton?
    Sola-Scripture is just doctrinal interpitation
    A way of Teaching.

    What’s the problem, these same methods are Employed and taught in Catholic seminary.
    But you! Will agree they prove nothing.
    Well then the Roman Catholic Church can’t prove any thing, the reform model of Theology is almost the same.

  89. I have given exhaustively a starting point there Biblical Assumsion (a stating point of reference), that it is Bible is the Authoritative word of God, and a Doctrinal point of Sola-Scripture.

    BFHU: But Sola Scriptura is not in Scripture.

    Back to Seminary Basics
    Doctrine -means teaching or to teach about a Subject that is generally accepted by other teachers.
    First you start with an Assumption that’s Biblical.

    BFHU: This is a Protestant way of devising doctrine. It is not Catholic

    “Jesus is Lord” Paul used this term 2 times.
    Rom 10:9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
    Mat 10:32 So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven,

    Were did Paul get His Ideas?

    BFHU: He was taught by Christ.

    The interpretation of Scripture is not the same thing as the Protestant doctrine of Sola Scriptura. I know how to read and interpret scripture. But don’t you believe that we should only believe doctrines that are explicitly found in scripture as you interpret it? The Catholic Church believes as doctrine those things we find in Scripture( as we interpret it) and all that Jesus taught His disciples and they passed on to “faithful men able to teach.” This is what we call Tradition with a capital “T”. It does not denote the teachings of mere men but the teachings of none other than the Apostles.

    We too believe that Jesus is Lord.

    Do you understand the process of interpitaton?

    BFHU: Yes.

    Sola-Scripture is just doctrinal interpitation
    A way of Teaching.

    BFHU: You may think this but my understanding of Sola Scriptura, as a Protestant, was that it meant I was not bound in any way to believe anything regarding religious truth unless it was to be found in Scripture. When I found out that this doctrine was not contained in scripture, I realized it was a mere teaching of men. That realization helped draw me to the Church founded by Jesus Christ. the ONE, HOLY, CATHOLIC, AND APOSTOLIC CHURCH.

  90. BFHU: This is a Protestant way of devising doctrine. It is not Catholic

    I just explained in an early post of the Catholic process it is almost the same with few exception, Reformers have developed more methods throughout years. And some of the newer methods are really bad. I will agree.

    By the way unless you are an appointed an exegete form The Roman Catholic Church you as a common man are not allowed to interpret scripture. That’s based on your tradition and also a Cardinal Doctrine. You should go tell your priest you have been Interpret ting Scripture without the Authority of the Roman Catholic Church.
    Luther and Tyndale and Calvin were appointed exegetes or theologians By the Roman Catholic Church they had the Authority.

    BFHU: You may think this but my understanding of Sola Scriptura, as a Protestant, was that it meant I was not bound in any way to believe anything regarding religious truth unless it was to be found in Scripture. When I found out that this doctrine was not contained in scripture, I realized it was a mere teaching of men. That realization helped draw me to the Church founded by Jesus Christ. the ONE, HOLY, CATHOLIC, AND APOSTOLIC CHURCH.

    Wich Demonination of Protestant? Not all use any process let olone the Holy Spirit with in them to able them at all.

  91. What’s Funny is all the so called EX- Protestants on this Blog will not name the Protestant Church they use to Attainted, or the Denomination, or even the Movement that there Church sprung out of. MMM makes me wonder. Why?
    You’re not telling the whole truth. Just seams like Roman Propaganda.

    Something that Romans are very good at.

  92. I grew up in Robert Schuller’s Church, then belonged to a Charismatic Church, then Southern Baptist, then Evangelical Free Church then Calvary Chapel.

    I know for sure that the EVFree church and Calvary Chapel taught Sola Scriptura and the guidance of the Holy Spirit could be counted upon to interpret scripture. This was very confusing when good people I knew well and knew loved Our Lord would interpret scripture in a very different way than I did. I knew God was not a God of confusion and that the Holy Spirit would not tell one person one thing and another person something completely different. This left me on a path of arrogance. I knew my heart intimately. I KNEW I was truly seeking God and the Truth. Therefore, if this other person interpreted scripture differently it must mean, that despite appearances, that person must NOT be actually led by the Holy Spirit. I did not like this conclusion but I could not come up with a better one.

  93. Calvary Chapel? Assemblys of God right
    Just reading one of there Core doctrines of speaking in tounges , a first year Bible colloge student can see thats there is no basis for that its not true. Speaking in Unknown touges is not a requierment. To be filled with the Holy Spirit.

    Robert Schuller’s , Not a bad Guy , More focus on practical theology probley to much Like Joel olsten.
    I dont Like TV preachers there always hung up money.

    EVFree church , A first year study in the Greek will tell you this is not a theology even though they claim it to be. thats in error. This is is a Post modern movment,
    The name is it self will cuse confustion.

    Charismatic Church? Mostly Formed out ofthe Holiness Movment. Im really not into Barking, or Floping on the floor.Charismatic -Charasmata means Gifts form the Greek there are many Gifts from the spirit . I dont barking is one of them.

    Southern Baptist ,Methodest Legalistic, Unlimited Attonment, meaning God Gave all Power to the One Preacher or the One President. This is were Calvin was right with limited Attonement the full power of God is never just in one person, The full power of God is in Jesus, and we share it in the Church.(It is shared) Jesus is the Body and we are parts of it. The Finger cant be the head. the Toe cant be the whole body “Arminist” are demons.

    BFHU:Therefore, if this other person interpreted scripture differently it must mean,

    The Basis of Reformed Theology, is that we all of mankind is deprived, even with are best knowledge and experiences we are still not equal in ourselves or even as a group to know what God knows. We see the text differently based on all sorts of Factors, Rich people like unlimited atonement for they can feel superior over others, and Poor people see human life form a real point of view. Jesus was poor remember. So 2 people one Rich had all the best in life, schools will see the Gospel different than a person who was uneducated poor. Even Catholic priest Disagree on passages do to economic, social states, reputation in community. Calvin was right again “ Depravity of Man”
    This reading scriptrue diffrently went on in Jesus’s Day big time bwteen the Parises and Sadusees.

    “Arminist”
    The real Herasy is here! teaching this. Most do not even know there being taught from this propective. Most Penicostal church teach this and never tell there asemblys were there doctinal staments come from. You know when you walk into a Presbyterian Church that your going to Here Luther and Calvin and Jerome and ST. Augusstine and ST. Banard, and ST. Franis and ST. Patrick and Treblium. we know are History and that History is taught the whole history of the Chruch. We still read the (Credo) the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed. The Luther Caticasims isnt used in a Presbyterian It is in the Book of Conffesions, but you read it on your own.

    And now theres Pluralst view , Taking pices of Calvin and mixing it with “Arminism” The is even worse. This is why Theology and Doctrine and History and the Orginal languases are so Important combined with the reading of Scriptrue.

    Examples one the process of Sola Scripture that was used in history;
    The fight to end slavery, William Wilberforce was Anglican. Sola Scripture was use to show that slavery didn’t give Glory to God, Slavery Abolition Act 1833
    Martin Luther King Jr. Baptist
    Abraham Lincoln Presbyterian

    Declaration of Barmen Karl Barth, Swiss Reformed theologian; Pope Pius XII described him as the most important theologian since Thomas Aquinas.

    Dietrich Bonhoeffer-Luthern

    All these men practice Sola Scripture

  94. Pam, thank you for this site. I am a ‘cradle Catholic’ who was not well educated in my religion and I find so much useful and affirming information in sites such as yours.
    I was in (a very long) correspondence with an extreme Calvinist pastor ,some years ago, which could not seem to find any way of ending. He was determined to convert me. Finally I pointed out that the many pamphlets that he had composed and had sent to me contained numerous partial truths,distortions and downright untruths about the Church and that he was clearly sufficiently educated and knowledgable to know this to be the case. I pointed out that if someone claimed a loving personal relationship with Jesus who was Himself the Way, the TRUTH and the Life, then that person had an absolute obligation to total honesty and could not defend his position on the basis of dishonesty and yet proclaim himself converted to Christ and saved. The correspondence (to my relief) ceased immediately! I can only hope that he became more circumspect in his writing thereafter.

  95. Steve,
    Thanks for the encouragement. I wonder if the pastor actually realized he was not teaching the truth about the Catholic Church or whether he was honestly ignorant of the fact and your comments got him busy doing real research into what the Catholic Church actually teaches?

  96. How many of you are Americas?
    How many believe in the Constitution and the Bill of rights?

  97. Hi there Roboman,
    I think the American promise of freedom of religion can be a great ally to the practicing Catholic. It is also possible that the “doctrine” of freedom of choice can produce alot of confusion. I know dedicated Christians who honestly don’t believe there is one true Faith. They have so many to choose from, how could only one of them be right? Yet the apostle Paul did say there is one Faith and one Church. Jesus said,”My sheep know My voice and they hear and follow Me”. For the first three quarters of the history of the Faith, a vast amount of the sheep were illiterate. Were those sheep misled by the Church simply because they couldn’t read or know better? I have decided at least for myself that it’s more important to be obedient than right. More of Christ’s sheep are in the Catholic Church than in any other, and I’ll grant you they’re not always the brightest, but they still hear the Master’s voice.

  98. Your conversion story is great. Even my Catholic faith is nourished by your humble story.

    God bless you and your family and hopefully your ever supportive husband would come home, God willing.

    To Jesus Christ be praised forver!

  99. Hello Joseph,

    To Jesus Christ be praised. This is our Catholic faith. We praise God alone.

    Catholic Tradition doesn’t contradict the teachings of the Apostles. It was through these same Apostles that we have this Sacred Tradition. Beyond any doubt, I am convinced that the Catholic Church which is the only Church that can trace its roots to the times of the Apostles is the truest Church of Christ which Hhimself promised to stay until he comes and that the gates of hell will not prevail.

    This is Christ promise to the Church. Thanks for your time. and may God bless you and your loved ones.

    • Dear Catholic Defender,

      thank you for your kindness and blessings to me and my loved ones. I pray you and yours are very well. I also appreciate your steadfastness and desire to be rock-solid. I do not like “fair weather fans” much, and I appreciate that you do not want to be one.

      However, for you to read the scriptures I have posted that are clearly contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Tradition and to claim that they are not contrary is difficult to understand. Please note that it is faithfulness to Jesus that saves, not faithfulness to men. Remember, in 1 Cor. 11: 19, Paul said that their is a legitimate reason for division, so that those who are aproved may be made manifest. He did not say that their would not be division, but that there would be, and that if we earnestly contend for the one faith that was once and for all time delivered to the saints as Jude commands, we will divide from those who are going astray.

      Furthermore, when Jesus said that the gates of hell shall not prevail against his church, He was saying that as long as we are faithful to Him and do not fall away, as a faithful bride, the second death has no power over us. He was not saying that men would not fall away, on the contrary, Paul emphatically stated in no uncertain terms that men from among the bishops themselves would be wolves is sheep’s clothing and would draw men away. Paul and John both tell us that their will be a “great falling away”. So we see from the Scriptures that both division and apostasy are certain. How do you suppose we are to be protected from these false teachers? Paul commanded us to prove all things and to hold fast that which is proven good. We can use the Bible as our standard of what is good and see that the Catholic Tradition falls short.

      Amos prophesied of a famine of God’s word (Amos 8:11), and when the Catholic leadership commanded that the Bible be read to the masses in Latin only, even though the people did not speak Latin, they were plainly commanding things contrary to Paul’s commandment to only speak words which could be understood (1 Cor. 14). The Catholic Church refused to allow men to make translations of the Bible into languages the masses could understand. Clearly, they helped to perpetrate the famine of God’s word.

      The Roman Catholic Tradition does indeed contradict the Scriptures and is designed to establish authority in the hands of men which God never intended, just as the Jewish traditions did. We cannot demonstrate that this Tradition comes from the Apostles, on the contrary, we can demonstrate that it does not. Please hear these words, your soul and the souls of your loved one’s depends on loving the Truth.

      I pray you will approach your continued study of God’s Word with a sincere heart, all of our souls depend on us doing that each time we go to study His sacred words. May God bless you and your cherished family and friends.

    • Hello again Catholic Defender,

      One more thing quickly. I am not sure I was entirely clear about my point regarding the apostasy and divisions. They are prophesied by the Holy Spirit to be from men within the group of bishops in the church, therefore, those who go astray may still claim to come from the true Church. They may legitimately claim a lineage that goes back to the Apostles, but that does nothing to prove thier truthfulness. These facts also demonstrate that Jesus was not saying that an apostasy and divisions of the church would not occur, when He said that the gates of Hades shall not prevail against His church, but rather, as I said, He was saying that for those who remain faithful to the end, the second death has no power.

      That which makes the Church is the Word of God, which is the seed of the Kingdom. Men found 2000 year old chickweed seed in an earthen jar in China and planted it. Do you know what grew? Chickweed! If we plant the seed of the Kingdom, which is the Word of God found in the Holy Scriptures, what do you suppose will grow? The Kingdom of the living God! The church of Christ!

      Please meditate on these immensely important things, and may God richly bless you.

  100. Thank you Joseph. As the Anglican Archbishop converted to Catholicism Cardinal Henry Newman “To be deep in history is to ceased to be a Protestant” In history, you will find how the Catholic Church and the Bible came to be.

    Thanks for your time and thanks for praying for me. Likewise I pray for you always for God has loved each Christian and prayed that one day we may be one as He and the Father is one.

    God bless.

    • I am presently studying the history of the “Church” and it is extremely fascinating and very revealing. I am finding that it gives no confidence in the Roman Catholic Church or her Traditions, quite the contrary, it proves that there is no legitimacy to her claims. I will give you reasons and evidence for my statements in a future note.

      For now, concerning my claims that 1 Tim 3: 1, 2 and following, regarding the qualifications of Bishopric, demonstrates a contradiction between Roman Catholic Tradition and the Word of God, I offer a brother’s conclusions. The short version is as follows:

      Dear Joseph,

      While I am no Greek scholar, I do have some access to Greek tools and have given this some degree of study and consideration. What follows is the result of my preparations.

      It is true that no imperative exists in the text of 1 Timothy 3:2, but there is a good reason for this… verbs in the imperative mood are given to be followed and realized by the hearer. They convey an action that must be obeyed or a state that must be entered into. In other words, imperatives take a person from one place to another. For example, in Acts 2:38, the hearers asked “What shall we do?” In response to this inquiry, Peter told them to repent and be baptized. Why? Because they had done neither. Thus, both repent and be baptized are imperatives that must be obeyed because they are not yet realized.

      The verb translated “must be” in 1 Timothy 3:2 is a present active indicative. Whereas an imperative gives a command to fulfill what is lacking (e.g. repent and be baptized), the present active indicatives indicates the requirements that must already be present and continually possessed by the candidate for bishop. In this usage, the indicative carries the same sense of obligation as an imperative. The text does not command men to possess the qualifications in the sense of not possessing them at the time, but rather demands the qualifications already be in possession by the candidate at the time of his appointment.

      Hope this his helpful to you in your studies. Let me know if this clear and helpful. If not, I will do my best to clarify.

      Take care and God bless.

      Sincerely,

      Todd Clippard
      House to House – Heart to Heart

      I hope this helps you to see the Truth of God’s Word more clearly. I pray that you will diligently seek God and love His Truth, rather than the Traditions of men.

  101. Mr Duran,

    may I kindly suggest that there are better places for you to carry on your message. Pam put her finger on it in her conversion testimony that what we have here is a difference in interpretations and exegesis.

    Personally I have found Pam’s story compelling and a reinforcement of my own faith (I am a cradle Catholic) and I would wager a guess that the majority of readedrs here are likewise here for the same thing.

    I am pleased to have you as a brother in Christ, our differences notwithstanding. I appreciate your desire to witness to people you believe in error, but I dont think any reader here visits Pam’s site for confrontation.

    Respectfully

    Dan

  102. Hello Mr. Scerpella,

    I am pleased to make your acquaintance, so-to-speak. Let me say that I truly appreciate your recognition of me as a Christian and your kind way of suggesting that I cease my work here, but with all due respect, I believe it is better for me to obey God than to obey you. While Jude was diligent to write to the brethren concerning the common salvation of Christians, he found it necessary to write to exhort them to earnestly contend for The Faith, which was once and for all time delivered to the saints. Since this is so, and my work here is to earnestly contend for that one faith (Jude 3), and it is the Truth that sanctifies (John 17: 17) and saves (John 8: 31-32), we cannot be saved in spite of not believing the Truth, I will not voluntarily cease my effort. If you are a Christian, then you must recognize that Jude’s exhortation likely applies to you also.

    If we refuse to believe God in favor of believing men, we are rejecting God and lose any confidence in our salvation even if we had already been saved at some earlier point (read Galatians). In the case of being able to understand what God says and choosing to ignore that because we like what men say better, we may have great confidence that we are to be damned.

    Therefore, this is extremely important, because it is very clear that the passage in 1Tim 3: 1-7 contradicts the Roman Catholic Tradition, and there is no way to escape that fact. We may say that God is true, or we may say that the Roman Catholic Tradition is true, but we may not say that they are both true. That is impossibility. There are numerous other serious contradictions, making it clear that Roman Catholicism is not from God (God cannot contradict Himself), but rather it in fact fulfills Paul’s warning in 1Tim. 4: 1-3.

    This statement is demonstrably true. If you truly love God, and not just Roman Catholicism, this will be extremely important to you. Unfortunately, most of you do not care. You will do amazing feats of twisting scripture, logic, and reason, in order to cling to the notion that there may be a way to “interpret” the Scripture in a harmonious way, like a lawyer looking for loopholes in a contract. You will attempt to “interpret” Scripture in the “light” of Tradition.

    However, there may be one or two who actually care about Truth, so God has sent me for their sake. I do not believe you have the authority to speak for all of the people who visit this site. I do however expect someone to block and sensor me soon.

    I hope you actually do love the truth and will be willing to re-read what I have written to consider my claims seriously, rather than simply to blow-them-off. I am praying for you and all others, that God will bless your continued study.

    God bless you and your loved ones, and good day.

  103. “Unfortunately, most of you do not care. ” (J.Duran)

    I personally take HUGE offense to this statement. I don’t find that to be true with any of my Christian brothers or sisters.

  104. You are right to be offended. I apologize. I shouldn’t have said it this way, because I do not know even close to “most of you” who visit this site. However, it is my experience that virtually every Catholic I have met may be shown that their religion is contrary to God’s express wishes, and they simply do not care. I hope this is not the case with the Catholics on this site. I hope you will understand my error and accept my apology.

    I will also remind you that to the Jews, who most ordinary people would have considered “good” people, Jesus said that they were children of their father the Devil. This is because they would not hear Him. Jesus was not being mean He was being truthful. He told us that most people will enter in at the Broad gate, refusing to hear His words. So, I am playing the odds here with that comment, and I am likely correct, but I do not know that I am. Therefore, I admit my error.

    Lastly, imagine the offense to God from folks who do not care about what He says. I mean sure, they’re in subjection to some of what God says, as long as their human leaders tell them to be, but is that truly in subjection to God? They also reject God wherever their leaders tell them to. God is so worthy of our love and adoration and worship. We should be happy to heed His words rather than to twist them in search of a way to cling to false religion. Did you notice the quote from Pope Benedict, which was posted on Poet Verse? If the quote is truly from him, he basically said that you can be saved even if you believe Jesus is false. This is an offense! I notice you have not mentioned being offended by such things.

    • Hmmmm……..lots of us ARE spending our time loving and adoring our Father. Others are spending their time telling us how WRONG we are. My offense is that yes, you don’t really know our heart or Minds or how we know our Father or How we love HIM! “I notice you have not metioned being offended by such things.”…????Wow, you have spent soooo much time with me.
      Yes, i would have been happy to accept your apology if you had not undone it at the end. Maybe someday we will meet in heaven and you will be able to say… wow…. alot of people loved the Lord that I just wrote off. Maybe HE is filled with a whole lot of Grace that you as a human just don’t understand.

      • Please know that my first error was less of an accusation and more of a lamentation. My second more of an encouragement to you to focus less on my manner of speech and more on the truly offensive and important fact that there has been a group of men grabbing religious authority against God’s wishes and leading millions astray for centuries. That is why I continually point out their various contradictions against God, which people seem to ignore to my bewilderment and frustration.

        I am sorry for hurting your feelings, but may I suggest that we try not to make this about me or my manner of speech and focus on the real issue, unless that is the real issue in your eyes. For me it is about God and His desire, and the salvation of souls. You seem to be suggesting that you are a tolerant fellow; I am asking you to actually be one.

        As far as seeing people in Heaven that I do not expect to see, I hope that is the case. That is the second most important reason for me to continue my work here. First, it is to honor God and second it is to help someone to see the truth. We cannot honor God while calling Him a liar at the same time. This is why it is so important for Catholics to understand that this is what their religion in fact does. Obviously, I am not writing any of you off. If I were to do so, I would not waste my breath, I would be as the prophet Jonas, yet here I am.

        As far as God having Grace that I simply do not understand as a human, this is true. I could not have inkling if His Word, The Holy Bible, had not revealed it to me. However, it has been revealed. I still cannot completely comprehend it, but I may apprehend it, and I see that it is limitless and that it is entirely in Christ Jesus. His Holiness (not the Pope) is also beyond our comprehension, but we may apprehend from the Scriptures that, because of His Holiness, we may not be saved if we are not a faithful bride to His Beloved Son Jesus. That is why I am here, to help you see that you are not being a faithful bride. Rather, a deceitful lover, The Roman Catholic Church, has beguiled you. The Protestants are in the same bed.

        This is not about you or I personally. You may be ten times the man I am, it makes no difference, it is the Truth that saves. This ought to be the thing you choose to focus on. I hope that your comments are not a revelation that you hold a belief that people can be saved in spite of not having the truth but in stead being contrary to it. I must warn against such notions as Satanic, because the Bible says that IF WE ABIDE IN JESUS’ WORDS, then we will be His disciples in deed and WE WILL KNOW THE TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH WILL MAKE US FREE (John 8: 31-32). Men cannot “interpret” that away.

      • That was good, Allie

        God Bless Pam Forrester bfhu.wordpress.com

  105. I believe in God the Father, maker of heaven and earth and in Jesus Christ His only son … born of the Virgin Mary. He was crucified and died for my sins. I believe in the Holy Spirit. The trinity. God in 3 person. I believe in Sacred Scripture and hope to pattern my life after Jesus in all my thoughts, words and deeds. I believe it is import I spend as much time as possible in prayer and that when I do mess up in the live I can turn to my Father, confess my sin and I will be forgiven.

    I am sorry that you think I am so misguided. I guess you can stand in knowledge that at least you tried to talk to me.
    If the day comes I am condemned to hell for my belief, then it will be on my Fathers judgement and not yours.

    • Greatly said! I have read everthing from the beginning and this has to be the most moving post yet. It stopped my heart…and I felt every word. Only because I am going through a personal issue of my own that this post truly relates to.

  106. I agree with much of what you have just said, with a few very important exceptions. I believe those agreeable things are very good, and I am pleased that you believe them. However, I do not say that because it is my opinion, I say it because of what God’s word says. That is one more place where I may not have been clear. This is not about my judgment, but rather it is about what Jesus has said. His words will judge us in the last day. Thank God, we now have His words!

    Furthermore, by the time God is telling you to depart it will be too late. I am not content with waiting until that time and simply saying, “I told you so.” You see if we study the scriptures we find that even though various churches, such as those in the region of Galatia, continued to believe the things you just mentioned, they still had fallen from grace. Christ would prophet them nothing if they refused to repent and turn back to the truth. There certainly are core things that are plain and necessary for us to believe in and to be in subjection to, some of which you overtly reject. Again, this is not my opinion it is demonstrable Biblical doctrine.

    Additionally, you believe in the Roman Catholic Church and her leaders, whom are contrary to God. They are some of the ones Paul warned us about, and they are to be accursed. The Scriptures are clear, as “good” of a person as you may be, you may not be saved in spite of this. It baffles me how you can be unconcerned about the fact that your religion contradicts God, but as you said; I have given it a sincere effort. Can you say the same?

    Regarding those few things, which you mentioned and with which we disagree, God is not your Father just because you say that He is. Jesus said to certain of the Jews who made this same claim, that they were sons of their father the Devil. He said this because they rejected the truth. John said that to all those who received Jesus, He gave the right to BECOME sons of God (not that they already were simply by receiving Him), not by blood (bloodline), nor by the will of the flesh (the flesh lusts mindlessly for anything), nor by the will of man (our desire cannot accomplish it apart from, or in contradiction to, God), but by the will of God (we must be in subjection to his will and come to Him according to His appointed way, then He will save). Moreover, those who have not come to Him according to the way in which He purposed in Himself from before the foundation of the world, have no right to come before His throne to seek forgiveness. They may not circumvent His way, and it is my contention that God has been very clear about what His appointed way is. We may be certain about it; there is no excuse to miss it.

    Please meditate prayerfully on these immensely important things. Thank you again for your time, and may God bless your continued study.

  107. 1. What are the exceptions?

    2. What do you disagree with my statement?

    3. God is not my Father? The devil is my Father?

    4. Please explain how I have rejected the Truth.

    5. I was raised in the Disciples of Christ, became Methodist at 18 I am not Roman Catholic.

    Pam/or others on this blog, please explain for me if my last post deviates from Catholic belief. with the exception that I left out Jesus rose from the cross and is alive now.

    I do have to apologize because to indicate that your judgment is of any importance to me was sarcasm on my part.

    • Great! I am glad you are still willing to speak to me about these pertinent issues. Now it seems we are getting somewhere. We agree then that my opinion means nothing. I was not aware that you are not a Catholic. Is this an indication then that we also agree that the Roman Catholic Religion is wrong? Certainly, the Roman Catholics agree with me that Protestantism in general, and that the Methodist denomination in particular, is wrong.

      I think that questions 1-3 and statements 4-5 are all related to the same thing, whether or not you are actually saved (not my opinion about this since we agree that it does not matter).

      Yes, you called God your Father and claimed that you may simply pray for forgiveness and that you were confident that He would indeed forgive you. I appreciate your beliefs and feelings about this. Many men teach about how to become a member of their denominations, claiming that if you do you will be a Christian, and they have been refining their method of teaching this for centuries. It seems that more and more today people are of the OPINION that all who claim a faith in Jesus are saved, even if they are all contradictory to one another and to God, even if their beliefs about God are made up! This is also a contrast to what many of these denominations once taught, that their particular denomination was the true faith (some still do teach that).

      Each denomination also teaches unique ways of organizing, worshiping, and various other religious practices, etc. They all follow their own creed books. You see, a Baptist is a Baptist, and a Methodist is a Methodist, and a Presbyterian is a Presbyterian. They are not the same. Each has unity with their own denomination, they become members in the same way, they speak the same things, they practice the same things, worship in the same way, and are organized in the same way, etc. They do not have this same unity with the other denominations.

      This is because their unity is based on something different, their respective creed books, books of church doctrine, books of church discipline, Watch Tower magazines, traditions, etc., hence forth to be referred to simply as “creed books”. Each has their own, and they are not the same. Worse, the creed books they use today are not the same as what that particular denomination began with, they are periodically “updated.”

      The “Ministers” of these diverse denominations are sworn to uphold their particular creed book. They may not be a “Minister” in that denomination otherwise. If that Minister deviates from the creed book he runs the risk of excommunication, or disfellowship, or being fired, or what have you. For example, if a Methodist Minister were to teach characteristically Catholic doctrine, he would not be a Methodist Minister for long.

      Jesus taught that we can not serve two masters because we will cleave to the one and forsake the other, or else we will love the one and despise the other. Jesus did not lie. The fact that a Methodist is a Methodist, a Baptist a Baptist, a Lutheran a Lutheran, and a Presbyterian a Presbyterian is a demonstration of the fact that they cleave to their respective creed books. What do you suppose this means about their attitude towards the Bible, regardless of what they claim their attitude is?

      Remember that Jesus did not lie. Since the foundation of their unity is the teaching of their denominations’ creed books, it is evident that it is not the Bible, and therefore the denomination can not be true. I believe Pam also pointed out that Protestants follow human traditions. She and I agree on this point. However, she seems to think that since you all follow human traditions; you are all equally acceptable, failing to recognize that this is not something that may be justified. Again, my opinion does not matter, but I am speaking about things that we may demonstrate are true.

      This brief introduction to my position on this topic should be enough to show that the denominations admission that the Bible is the Word of God with their continued adherence to their creed books is an admission that they can not be true. We should follow what we can prove is from God. The creed books are evidently from men, while the Bible is clearly divine in origin.

      I am not an expert on Methodist teaching; however, if I am not mistaken, modern Methodists do not believe what the original Methodists believed. You can teach me about that if you please and I will check it out for myself. If I am correct on this point, it is further evidence that they do not consider their creed book to be infallible. Nevertheless, they may still fire a Minister who deviates from it in order to hold to the Bible, which is infallible.

      I may be wrong, but I am under the impression that Methodists teach that all one must do to be saved is to say a “sinners prayer,” and once you are saved, you can never fall away. If this is what they believe, then they contradict God’s Word. The things you mentioned above are also necessary, to love God, to pray often, to seek to be like Jesus, to love people, etc. In order to do these things and to begin a true walk with Jesus, one must hear the Gospel, believe it, repent (cease rebellion and begin to obey God from a sincere heart), confess that Jesus is Lord, be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and to endure in faithfulness to the end. These things are not my opinion, I did not pluck them out of thin air, and they are straight out of the Bible, the context bearing these out also.

      Thank you again for your precious time, I am glad that you do not want to waste it on worldly living, but rather to seek God’s truth. God bless you and your loved ones.

  108. Yes, you are wrong. That is not Methodist theology. Your salvation can be lost at any time. My mother is a Methodist pastor and Methodist theology is very similar to Catholic. Alot of her classes were actually taught be a Catholic nun.

    No, I don’t agree with your position on Roman Catholic, because much like Pam and Scott Hahn in my search for truth I have come to the Catholic church and will enter in as a member in Spring 2010.

    I don’t really feel like you addressed the numbered statements I put out there.

    I would like an answer to my statements that I made. How would you believe that I am lost.

    You speak negatively of groups of people without knowing their hearts or relationship with God. You say you have revelation that we don’t have. Am I to assume that then according to you, you will be the only one who is making it to heaven?

    Your statements is that we should only believe what we can prove is from God…. I hate to break this to you, but we cannot “prove” any of this is from God.

  109. *sorry. that should read taught BY a Catholic nun

  110. Fascinating, and sad! First, let me clear up a misunderstanding. I am not sure where the idea that I am claiming to have special revelation directly to me from God came from. My information comes from the Bible. I hope you are not just throwing that in, in a false attempt to discredit me, as sort of a straw man argument. That would be very cheap. I know that I did not suggest the idea.
    You seem to think that the claims I made are not in the Bible. I am sorry for not including the Scripture verses that prove the points. I assumed you would know to what I was referring.
    In order to be saved, first, we must HEAR the gospel preached (Rom 1: 15-18; 10: 14-17; 1 Cor. 1: 18, 21; John 17: 20; etc.)
    Second, we must BELIEVE that message (see the above verses and also, Mark 16: 15-16; John 20: 31, etc.).
    Third, we must REPENT (Acts 2: 38; 3: 19; 17: 30; 2Pet. 3: 9; etc.).
    Fourth, we must CONFESS that Jesus is the Lord (Matt. 10: 32-33).
    Fifth, we must be IMMERSED in water (baptized) into Christ (Matt 28: 19; Mark 16: 15-16; Acts 2: 38; 8: 29-39; Galatians 3: 27; Colossians 2: 11-12: Rom. 6: 3-8; 1Pet. 3: 20-21; etc.).
    At this point we receive the remission of sins, we receive the circumcision made without hands, our sins are washed away, and we are saved. However, we must still CONTINUE and ENDURE in the faith to the end in order to be made members of His “house”, to be “partakers of Christ”, to receive “the crown of life”, to be “clothed in white garments”, and so that our name is not blotted out of the book of life (Heb. 3: 6, 14; 6: 4-8; 2Pet. 2: 20-22; Rev. 2: 10; 3: 5; etc.).
    Regarding my claims about not being able to serve two masters, Jesus said, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other, You cannot serve God and mammon” (Matt. 6: 24). This is one reason why I say that the denominations forsake the Bible, since they evidently are loyal to their creed books.
    The last thing I will mention in this letter is the woman pastor issue. Biblically speaking, Pastors are Elders are Overseers are Bishops, and Paul says plainly that a bishop must be the husband of one wife. Furthermore, he says earlier in the same passage that he will not suffer a woman to teach or have authority over the man. His reasons for that are that the woman was made as a help for the man, and that it was Eve who was beguiled. So, He takes it all the way back to God’s original purpose for women and the first sin of mankind. This proves that it transcends both ages and cultural boundaries. Clearly then, women simply cannot qualify to be Pastors, biblically speaking. Maybe you can explain more details of your particular beliefs regarding women Pastors.
    I am out of time for now. Try not to be so angry; I am simply speaking matter-of-factly about these very important issues. I am not attacking you personally. I pray that God blesses your continued study.

  111. Mr. Duran,

    I feel the same about you fascinating and sad.
    Why in the world would I be angry?

    You have yet to address my(very simplistic belief ) statement and tell me where I am wrong in my belief.

    I have to discredit some of your statements about your knowledge of Protestant and Catholic belief as you don’t know what your talking about. I have to discredit you mostly on your throwing away the old testament.(JD “because the New Testament is our only authority. )
    (Matthew 5:17, “”Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.NIV
    “Don’t ever think that I came to set aside Moses’ Teachings or the Prophets. I didn’t come to set them aside but to make them come true. GWT”)

    JD says : ” They command men to anoint themselves with “holy water” in order to be worthy to enter a building made with hands. They command men to genuflect when passing before the alter, or some such thing, because God is said to live in some “relic” or something, behind the alter.”

    Happy says: This is not correct. I have never been commanded to anoint myself. No one is genuflecting to any alter. We are bowing down and showing respect to the KING! and it’s not like your gonna get kicked out of church if you don’t do that.

    J D says: “I may be wrong, but I am under the impression that Methodists teach that all one must do to be saved is to say a “sinners prayer,” and once you are saved,”you can never fall away.

    Happy says: yes, you are WRONG!!!!!!

    JD says: “I do not want you to miss however that Jesus church is alive and well today. It is not a denomination. It is not Protestantism, or Roman Catholicism, or Orthodox Catholicism, or Jehovah’s Witnesses, or Seventh Day Adventists, or Mormons, or any of those. If you would like to know more about Christ’s church, visit the website of His Tarentum congregation listed above.” Fascinating, and sad! First, let me clear up a misunderstanding. I am not sure where the idea that I am claiming to have special revelation directly to me from God

    “It is not a denomination.”
    I am a member of the true church of Christ. We are made up of tens of thousands of congregations world wide, each of which are completely independent.

    Happy says : Uh yes, sounds just like, Catholic, Methodist, Presb. Baptist.????

    JD Says:”However, there may be one or two who actually care about Truth, so God has sent me for their sake. I do not believe you have the authority to speak for all of the people.”
    JD Says, “First, let me clear up a misunderstanding. I am not sure where the idea that I am claiming to have special revelation directly to me from God”

    Happy says….. Um well the statement that you made right there.
    I, too am out of time. I am speaking matter- of- factly about these issues. I am not attacking you personally. I do have to believe though, that instead of knowing that there are many people who love the Lord and work to do his Work and His Will and that you can’t lump those who do and those who don’t in to one group and label them. I would venture to guess that their are 10’s of thousands in your church of Christ who are lost, fallen away from the truth or are “just going through the motions” but myself or anyone else is not in the position to make that assumption.

  112. JD: “I had no idea I would have to take such great pains to explain such obvious things as this.”

    Ha… sorry I am such a dummy.

    JD: “You may be better than I in many things,”

    I am not claiming to be better or worse or angry or not…. I am claiming, that :

    I believe in God the Father, maker of heaven and earth and in Jesus Christ His only son … born of the Virgin Mary. He was crucified and died for my sins. I believe in the Holy Spirit. The trinity.
    I believe in Sacred Scripture and hope to pattern my life after Jesus in all my thoughts, words and deeds. I believe it is import I spend as much time as possible in prayer and that when I do mess up in the live I can turn to my Father, confess my sin and I will be forgiven.

    I stand on that. You say I can’t be any of those denominations and be saved. OK, you have said your piece. I hear you and as I said before I discredit you because You do not believe in the things I believe in. Like I said, I believe that perhaps on the small issues perhaps one day I will stand before the Lord and he will say ” You didn’t really have to kneel down to me all those years” then I will be like ok, I was wrong .(or whatever……) I find it very hard to believe though our God filled with Grace is going to send us to hell for the small things that maybe we didn’t get quite right. I think He will look at our hearts and how we loved him and how it affected those around us and how we wanted to know and be like His precious Son. Words from the Father lift up and exhort .

    Good day

  113. Dear Happy,

    I am sorry if you thought that I was putting words in your mouth when I said that you may be better than I in many things. I was not intending to do that, my intent was to say that even IF you were a much better person than I, my point stands, because all of that is beside the point. I said this because it seems as though you think I am saying that I am better than you are and therefore I am saved and you are not. That could not be further from my message, and I want to be very clear on that.

    Regarding you being upset about my saying that I didn’t know that I would have to take such great pains in explaining obvious things, you kinda asked for it. I mean, seriously, I am sure you know about the great commission and how God commands us to teach and exhort and rebuke daily, and how he sends preachers into the world. If I am correct, and you are aware of these things, then you used my statement of having been sent by God to teach those who may be willing to hear to suggest that I was claiming special revelation in a completely insincere way. You didn’t merely suggest it, you claimed that I said as much. That’s not cool.

    However, if you truly are not aware of those things from God, then you really do not know the Bible nearly as well as I have assumed that you do, and in that case I am sorry for my statement. That is not intended as an insult. I do not mean to say that if you do not know the Bible you are a dummy. Some people just haven’t learned yet. If, however, it is true that you do not know the Bible very well, then it would not be wise for you to earnestly contend against the things I am saying, because you have no way of knowing if they are so. If that is the case, I would suggest listening, asking questions, and checking the Scriptures to see if what I am saying is so. But, I think you have made it clear that you do know the Bible fairly well.

    I would also have you remember the woman who asked Jesus to cast a demon out of her daughter, to whom Jesus said that it is not appropriate to give the children’s bread to the little dogs. She did not say, I can’t believe you just said that to me. She said, “True, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters table.” Jesus praised her for her faith. She was a humble woman. Why don’t we both try to be more like this woman, and seek to understand one another and learn something from one another?

  114. What I find funny is you keep stating things like I am upset or I am angry…… I am nothing but somewhat amused. But much like my friends on this blog that is fading fast. You have made claims not meaning to insult anyone, but truly when you go on a Catholic blog, and make the statements about Catholics and Protestants in this world that you don’t even know, How honestly do you think these people are not going to be insulted. Your point? YOU have it all figured out and no one else does. Do you understand how you are coming off???? OK, we got it.

  115. JD: Clearly you are intentionally missing the point.

    Happy: Well, it is not intentional. Please don’t reprimand me for your having “to take such great pains to point out the obvious.” as you have in the past.

    JD:. I stated earlier that God’s Church is alive and well.

    Happy: Good, we agree!!
    You have to remember that we have ALL been commissioned by God. Contrary to you though I would not go on your denominations web page and tell everyone there that they are lost.

    When Jesus was asked, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” he replied, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind’ – this is the great and foremost commandment, and there is a second like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’. The whole Law and Prophets hang on these two commands.” (Mtt 22:37-40, Mrk 12:28-34).

    I had several advisement just to ignore you and yet, I have to wonder if you think you are doing any witnessing how you think you would reach anyone without the spirit in you: * Love
    * Joy
    * Peace
    * Long suffering
    * Kindness
    * Goodness
    * Faithfulness
    * Gentleness
    * Self-control
    ??????
    I mean If I were not a Christian and you were trying to convince me I don’t think I would be witnessing anything that would woo me to a relationship with the Lord.

  116. Lastly, I am not a member of a denomination; I am a member of Christ’s church, by his authority, not man’s, and He is not building a denomination.

    Joseph Duran

    The Catholic Church is Christs Church founded by Christ himself upon Peter and it is the only Church which truly has apostolic succession and therefore authority, and all others are denominations from it. Your Non denomination is a denomination in itself, you reject authority by claiming the line of succesion goes directly from Christ to you.

    • Hello Mr. Scerpella,

      I am sorry that I have not had the chance to give a thourogh answer to your comment. I have been extremely busy. I am sure that you are also, so I appreciate the time you have dedicated to this very important issue. Let me just say at this point that we both have rejected aurthority and we both have accepted authority.

      Let me ask you a question. If the Scriptures are God’s Words and they command me to prove all things and to hold fast to that which may be proven good, and they clearly and explicitly authorize Bishops to marry, how can any man refuse a Bishop to marry? A second question might be, if men do refuse Bishops to marry, and these men claim authority because of a “line of succession” back to the Apostles, should we follow them in spite of the fact that they contradict the Apostles and in spite of the fact that the Apostles warned us that Bishops would fall away and lead many astray?

      If the Word of God is the seed of the Kingdom, and by sowing it we may grow the Kingdom, should we instead sow the words of men who contradict the Word of God simply because they claim a “line of succession” that stems from the Apostles?

      I may not bow to every authority. I must choose which authority I will subject myself to. I am a subject of the King, therefore I will follow His words. It does not matter what “line of succession” men may claim.

      Thank you again for your time. I will try to elaborate more on these things soon.

  117. “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ [i.e., made us alive in Christ], (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.” —Ephesians 2:4-8

    JD:

    I think when you look at the example of King David, it is obvious that God is more interested in the condition of our heart then you give Him credit. (David is just one example). I know we could banter back and forth forever and never see eye to eye, so I will say this and bow out.
    I just don’t believe that you can judge God’s Grace and Mercy. I want to be able to extend that to all that I come across. Finally, I still agree with Mr. Scarpella. A group of people made up of thousands sounds like a denomination. I would think you have leaders, ???
    people in place to make decisions even things like what ministries does your money help?!

    Best Wishes.

  118. [...] Being a Protestant was like watching a Corpus Christi procession, then rushing up and knocking down the priests and nuns, candles, censors, crucifix, and monstrance but grabbing the Bible and carrying it away and basing faith on it alone. Pam Forrester [...]

  119. I think that this is a fantastic story. You mentioned earlier in the story that you had pride and that it was at times difficult to embrace something so different, and to perhaps be swayed from your opinion. Did you also have a difficult time accepting others from a different faith? I have heard ex- athiests still have the habit of judging others, esp. brothers and sisters in christ. How do you still love them if you disagree with some of their ways?

  120. Dear Author,
    This is a good website. I am looking for a quotation that I think was said by St Athanasius that went like this. Somebody asked St Athanasius which of Christ’s teachings he adhered to. He answered in Greek “cathlicos” all of them… all inclusive.
    Do you know anything about this statement?
    Thank you,
    Patricia Koenig
    patz13@live.com

  121. I am grateful to all of you for all of your research. Both parties. My life has been a tragedy, since I learned about the Holy Eucraist. Being raised protestant, and then been given a Rosary blessed by our lady in Medogorge which was dated to my birthday, was very hard for me to understand. I feel like I have been lost for 10 years, since I rejected the Catholic faith. Nothing can console a heart who loves Jesus since they were very small. If the Holy Eucarist is Really real, and we need to partake of Christ’s body, and blood, then so be it. It is hard because I meet Catholic women, and they are so reverent. I really feel like growing in christ is learning, about the sacrifice that Jesus made for us. I have never been able to go back to the protestant church for very long, It is not in my heart to be there. My Grandmother who was Catholic, saved our family through a dream, that warned her of a ship sinking. This may have nothing to do with the Catholic church, but it is important to me. I have given up religion all together, but today I realized that I have been running from God’s leading me to the Catholic church, all this time. All the signs seem to be there, but everything I have believed about God and salvation have been so different then Catholic Theology. I notice the hate alot of people have for the Catholic church, but Alot of people I have met in the Catholic church do not show that same hate. I myself have felt hate and prejudice against the Catholic, church although. I do not feel that anymore. Now I only feel a sadness, like there are other things that can bring me closer to Jesus that I am missing. Is church going to change me. No but if there is something in this world that brings me closer to the wonderful Jesus who came down and was a friend to us all. I can’t imagine being away from that, as long as I am on this earth. So I guess. What i am saying, is that I am hoping that it is the body and blood of Christ, because, Wherever Jesus is, is where I want to be.

    • Dear Lauren,
      I hope you will follow the truth into the Catholic Church. I will pray for you and ask that all who read this would say a,

      Memorare

      Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thine intercession was left unaided.

      Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins, my mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me.

      Amen.

      • Thank you for this prayer.

      • Dear Bfhu,

        I told my husband last night that I was going to become Catholic. He said, “I guess we could become Catholic, what do they believe again?” I said “that the communion actually is the body and blood of Christ.” “Isn’t it?” He said. “Why would you think that?” I asked. “Well I always just thought that’s what it was”he said. I guess when he was a little boy his Catholic aunts took him to mass. and he had always thought that. Ironically his parent were baptist, but he ended up going into the church, serving but was accused of being worldly because he pierced his ears. so he left church and never came back. but he has maintained a personal relationship with Christ, and has read his bible. So Ironically whenever he and I would go to a protestant church and take communion. Both of us. would be very reverent, and feel totally out of place. because we were kind of nervous. So nervous, that when I was pregnant with our first Son. He notices that my communion was a lot smaller then his, so he wanted to trade our bread and juice. We ended up trading, and I was like”I don’t think your allowed to do that”. We ended up crying because we were laughing so hard, and were so nervous. Communion has always been hard for us to take, because we both get so nervous that we laugh. So usually I can’t sit next to him in church. Ironically both he and I were taking communion as a Catholic in the protestant church. But Now it all makes sense because I actually married someone who I had thought was definitely not Catholic at all, but was actually Catholic when he was really little. It is funny because this whole time he believes in the holy Eucharist and did not know that, it was Catholic to do that. So Ironically he and I finally realize why we never want to go to church, Because we are actually Catholic at heart and we did not know!!!!! I am so grateful to finally find my way. I know that I have been haunted a long time for walking away from the Catholic church. I think I have been confused a long time about who I am. I have never been able to go to church without feeling really upset after wards. I realize now that it is because I belong at the Catholic church.

        • Awesome! I am so excited and it is the perfect season, Lent, for this grace to fill you and your husband.

          God Bless Pam Forrester bfhu.wordpress.com

    • Dear Joseph,

      I understand many things you are saying. but clearly in most protestant churches. the honor for Jesus is not apparent. I feel that the whole act of worship in protestant churches are not focused on Christ. There are people on stage, who are clearly standing in the place where the focus should be on Christ alone. The reverence is just not there, by the whole act of worship. I believe in church we should kneel before the Lord, That we should remember his body, that was given up for us. And that we should really focus on his great sacrifice. I am not saying that anyone who goes to other churches are wrong. They may have so many things right, but the one thing that we need to have right most importantly is Christ. Yes there is no other name under heaven in which we must be saved. So that leads me to believe that, Christ and the cross, are the most important. I have been to so many sermons, about how to live, and how to love. etc etc. but at some point, we all just need Christ. I don’t believe the communion that Christ gave us. should just be written off, as a remembrance. Communion, should be the greatest gift Jesus left us, as well as the holy spirit. I can’t imagine how anyone would not want to receive communion every day. I mean can you imagine, Jesus saying “this is my body that was given up for you?” and sitting at the table with him? I just can’t even imagine sitting with Jesus and eating with Him, That last supper must have been so important to him. It must have meant so much. I just cannot thrive with people any longer who disregard so much of what is beautiful about our faith. I don’t think the word should be a weapon that hurts others, It is too strong if it is used in the wrong way. Although protestants say we are saved by faith alone, It troubles me that when trying to believe this, we use the word as harm. I think that it causes real bondage. Ironically, trying to be justified by the word, causes us as believers to really get caught up in legalism, and it is not freeing at all. Yes we can only be saved by grace through faith in Christ, But that does not mean we disregard everything else that is precious about the faith. I don’t think that Jesus ever did not want to share his story with Everyone, He glorifies us, and we glorify him. I don’t think that he ever tried to be the only part of the story. Because we are all family in Christ. Jesus yes is our savior. He is the only name under heaven in which we must be saved. but His family, all the saints that gave their life for him, are important. His mother was important. All his apostles are important. We cannot disregard, everything that was and is apart of his life. We are all who are saved, are part of this big story. And I feel that Catholicism, holds on to things that really honor Christ.
      It is impossible for me to any longer be a protestant. Not because of any kind of Intelligent rebuttals, which I did know by heart at one time, which caused me to attack someone that tried to bring me to Catholicism. But because plainly. I want to know more about the people that loved Jesus. The precious saints, those that loved Jesus. Mother Theresa who loved so much. I don’t think that the Catholic church is being unbiblical, I think that they are embracing, the mysteries of Christ. They are embracing the story of Jesus. I believe the structure of the Catholic church must be from God. It is evident that little children thrive on structure and boundaries. We like little children need a God of order, we need to go to a place of worship where God is always honored, and his son is honored. Where God is always on the throne, and the humility of Christ is remembered. So that we too can remember to be humble and kind. If not we become disobedient and arrogant.

      Thank you though for your concern,

      sincerely,

      lauren

  122. The bible does mention that particular people give up marriage for the faith. I think that Paul was describing a lifestyle that one should have in order to be a good example (not having more then one wife) but I don’t think he was disregarding those that give up marriage for the faith. Those people devote their whole lives to Christ. That is amazing. I don’t think those people should ever be disregarded. They are probably very selfless. It is a given that once your married your life is focused on your wife and family, and not on the things of God. So the life these men who don’t marry choose is most likely a path that they are destined for. I think that it is unfair to attack them, just because they don’t marry.

    • Dear James Fleming,

      You are correct that Pam’s story is appealing, but please reconsider. The Roman Catholic Church is not the true church of Christ, as it denies His Word, the Holy Bible, in favor of its Traditions, which uninspired men wrote after the Apostles expired and the Apostles did not support as Scripture. Jesus promised that the Apostles would be guided into ALL TRUTH. Therefore, there was no religious truth into which they were not guided. There was no continuing revelation after their time, but the Apostles taught that we should earnestly contend for the one Faith, once and for all time, delivered to the saints (Jude 3).

      Additionally, there was not one important truth left out of the Holy Scriptures, as the Scriptures tell us that all Scripture is breathed by God and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God might be COMPLETE, THOROUGHLY EQUIPPED UNTO EVERY GOOD WORK (2 Timothy 3: 16-17). The Holy Scriptures never teach that the church should look to the Pope or to the so-called oral Apostolic Traditions written down long after the Apostles passed away by uninspired men who were not spoken to directly by the Apostles themselves, to keep the church from going astray, and to make men complete, thoroughly equipped unto every good work. It never mentions anything about a Pope. In fact, Jesus commands that we Christians should not call any man our father, for one is our father, God who is in heaven (Matthew 23: 9). Pope means father.

      Please see my comments above.

      Thank you for your time.

      Sincerely,

      Joe

  123. I understand the importance of the word, of God, It is just that When you examine everything by the law. It is apparent that we all fall short, and need to keep with repentance. Sometimes it seems that people put so much emphasis on following the word of God, that they forget the main idea. about Grace repentance and the sacrifice. This is very dangerous. It is love that leads people to God. It is always his love that brings us close to him. The only reason we have the law is for sinners. Without the law, we have grace and freedom. The word of God yes is important. But you can have the word, and know every single verse, but if you don’t have a loving relationship with Christ then you are left with a bunch of bible verses that are haunting. Testing everything by the word of God is very important. But Praising God, and meditating on what he did for us is important as well. I fell into the dangers of legalism, and It is very sad because we are placing the law above Christ, and that is not right. We should always remember Christ and his body, because it reminds us, of the Grace we have been given. If we focus on the law then we become puffed up. Yes the bible is the word of God, And we should test everything by the word. But There are traditions that Jesus instituted such as communion, those traditions are what hold a church together. Especially the body and blood of Christ. Tell me where in any church do people kneel and pray? Not in any of the churches I have been to. It is not a circus act for entertainment, or the words of one pastor. It is all the pieces of the puzzle. such as the Holy Eucharist., Prayer, repentance, humility, being reverent. acknowledging the saints who sacrificed everything for the name of Christ. Being apart of God’s holy church. I love going to church and singing the praise music, but I just think that the whole act of humility is not manifested. Only by some people but as a whole. people are all doing their own thing, It is not one body doing one thing together. In the Catholic church all people are focusing on mostly the same things. It is a very big act of humility, that most people don’t do in other churches. The example of humility and reverence is just very apparent in the Catholic church.

  124. I want to thank you for all of the insight. My story is similiar to Lauren’s, except I’m not married. I searched, refused, and searched again to find my place. Raised Catholic, but ran away because of things “MEN” put in to my head. As I began to self teach through the Bible and pray for guidance from God…I walked right back in to the Catholic Church. This web site has helped me so much and has been a real confirmation for me. The Catholic Christians on this site are so loving, not that everyone else is not loving but some were so harsh. I am a proud Catholic, lover of the Lord, and the word.

    God bless everyone who has shared. At lease we all have one thing in common…We love God, his Son Jesus, The Holy Spirit and all want to be with God in Heaven. Can we all agree on that at least?

  125. Pam: Coincidentally I came upon your site morning, having listened yesterday evening to the testimony of a lady here in Ireland who had originally been Roman Catholic. (I hope to write about this meeting on my blog.) What concerned me were your early experiences in an Evangelical Church which (like most) adheres to the doctrine of eternal security. You were right in believing that there is no scriptural foundation for this. Yes, those of us who do not adhere to this doctrine are in a minority, and often we feel alone and isolated in our convictions – but praise God for the truth of His Word. I agree with you that people did not always have the scriptures and could not always read – but this is where faith comes in. I too am a ‘Catholic’ – but not a ‘Roman Catholic.’ (Catholic meaning universal in the Christian sense.) My faith carries me through on a daily basis but please note that the Roman Catholic Church (which calims to be the ‘one true church’ would say that I am going to Hell because I am not a member of it. This is the truth – please read the church’s unchanging articles. I will pray for you.

  126. I am afraid you have been misinformed. The Catholic Church does not pronounce that anyone is going to Hell. You imply that this misinformation can be confirmed in Church Documents. Where?

    You might want to read this post No Salvation Outside the Catholic Church. It is not what you think.

  127. Several Popes (including Pope Pius IX on 9/12/54)have stated that there is no salvation outside the Roman Catholic Church. Please see “outside the church there is no salvation…” – extra ecclesiam nulla salus. This is offical Roman Catholic teaching and can only mean that those who do not belong to the Roman Catholic Church will never be saved – ie. go to Heaven. The present Pope confirmed this doctrine just recently. Cannon 9 of the Council of Trent states that those who persist in believing that “by grace are ye saved through faith… “(read Eph. 2v8&9) – let them be ‘anathema.’

  128. Dear Readywriter,
    It is a heresy to believe that only Roman Catholics or Catholics are going to Heaven. A priest, Leonard Feeney was EXCOMMUNICATED for teaching that only Catholics were going to Heaven. I do not know how to make it any clearer than that.

    The anathema pronounced by the Council of Trent that you quote is accurate but it only applied to apostates at that period in time. It does not apply to Protestant Christians who know nothing else. We leave them to God’s mercy.

    No salvation outside the Catholic Church means simply that all those who wind up in Heaven are saved by the death and resurrection of Jesus through the Catholic Church. If you would read the actual document you would find out that your interpretation is incorrect.

    Here is a trustworthy website dedicated to this teaching and correcting misapprehensions.
    Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus
    Post linked here is about the Council of Trent and Fr. Feeny.

  129. I would agree that the stance of the R.C. church towards ‘outsiders’ appears very different pre-Vatican 11. But is it? Pope Innocent 111: “There is but one Universal Church of the faithful, ouside of which no one can be saved.” Vatican 11: “For it is only through Christ’s Catholic Church, which is the all-embracing means of salvation, that they can benefit fully from the means of salvation…” What does this mean? We either benefit or we do not – we cannot ‘partially’ benefit from salvation. I would agree with Pope Innocent 111’s decaration (above), but for different reasons which are based on scripture. Jesus said: “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.” (John 3v3) My husband was raised R.C. – I a Protestant, but we both put our trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation many years ago now. Doctrinally we would be ‘arminian.’ We are not church members of any particular denomination, but we belong to the Church which is spoken of in Colossians 2v18, of which Christ is the Head. We believe that Jesus died for everyone – and that it is not His will that any should perish. After trusting the Lord to save him, my husband found the book of Hebrews most enlightening.

  130. Ready: Pope Innocent 111: “There is but one Universal Church of the faithful, ouside of which no one can be saved.”

    BFHU: That does seem to support your case. But it needs to be read in context. What document and paragraph is it from?
    I would like to see if it has been accurately quoted.

    READY: Vatican 11: “For it is only through Christ’s Catholic Church, which is the all-embracing means of salvation, that they can benefit fully from the means of salvation…” What does this mean? We either benefit or we do not – we cannot ‘partially’ benefit from salvation.

    BFHU: You have:
    (1) misread your quote and
    (2) misinterpreted b/c you are reading it with a Protestant view of salvation, which is understandable.

    However, the influence of your Protestant culture is similar to a Chinese person, with English as a second language, who comes here and hears the phrase, “Hit the road, Jack.” from a girl he is dating.

    Because he is not familiar with the American culture he wonders why she is calling him “Jack” when she knows that is not his name. Never-the-less, trying to please her he walks out to the street and hits it only find her rolling on the ground laughing.

    Now let’s look at the quote:

    “benefit fully from the means of salvation…”

    It does NOT say “benefit from salvation.” It says:

    “benefit fully from the means of salvation.”

    For Protestants, Jesus died, I believe therefore I am eternally saved. But for Catholics there is more to it. Jesus died, I am saved by baptism, nourished by the Eucharist and Word of God, healed by confession if I lose my salvation through mortal sin, receive grace though all of the sacraments and through living my vocation faithfully so as to progress in holiness.

    The sacraments and teaching of the Catholic Church are the MEANS of salvation that the Pope is talking about. They assist us in staying the course thoughout our lives so we die in friendship with God.

    Protestants have no access to most of the sacraments and reject many of the teachings of the Catholic Church. Therefore, they benefit only partially from the MEANS of salvation. This, however, DOES NOT MEAN they cannot be saved.

    Ready: We believe that Jesus died for everyone – and that it is not His will that any should perish. After trusting the Lord to save him, my husband found the book of Hebrews most enlightening

    BFHU: I completely agree and so does the Catholic Church. I would love to answer any more of your honest questions or point to posts on this website or elsewhere. You actually may LOVE being Catholic if you have not found a Church. I have been Catholic for 10 years now and I am still thrilled to have finally found her. I would not trade her, warts and all, for any other Church. I still can’t keep from singing.

  131. Dear bfhu, I could go on forever with this debate, but this life will not last forever and so it is imperative that we are certain that we have the truth, given that all eternity depends upon it. I simply want to say this: The sacrifice of the mass is according to R.C.’s… “a propitiary sacrifice which is offered for the living and the dead, for the remission of sins and punishment due to sin…” But please read Hebrews 10 (too long to quote here!). Verse 18… “Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.” Yet we previously read in verses 11&12… “And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins… But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down at the right hand of God.” What more can I say? May the Lord speak to you, as you read the book of Hebrews as I did. I love my neighbours whether R.C., (mostly), Protestant, or Muslim (a few) and seek to tell them of my own experience, when I found the Lord 32 years ago now. I am not saved by works – but the works that I do (in His strength) are evidence of my faith in a living Saviour who died that we might live forever in the joy of His Presence.

  132. Dear Ready,

    In Hebrews 10, what are the sacrifices that the priest offers over and over that can never take away sins?

    v. 4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.

    The Catholic Church does not offer the blood of bulls and goats. Therefore, St. Paul’s remarks about the priest offering sacrifice that cannot take away sin is not referring to the sacrifice of the mass. It must be read in context.

    The Mass is not another sacrifice. It is a representation of that same, one and only sacrifice of Jesus made present to us in time. You may think I am just making excuses but the Church has ALWAYS believed this. I would think you would want to understand the ACTUAL teachings of the Catholic Church and not what other Protestants say the Catholic Church teaches. Then you won’t find your self making false accusations about the Catholic Church. You can begin by reading the posts linked below.

    Sacrifice of the Mass

    Eucharist in the Early Church
    Do Catholics Sacrifice Jesus Again?

  133. Hi bfhu, I have no wish launch attacks on any church – I just want to present the truth. The fact is (and any priest will tell you this) that the Mass is always referred to as “a sacrifice.” Of course it is a sacrifice for sins. This is not what other Protestants say it is – this is what the R.C.Church says about itself…
    361. What are the purposes for which the Mass is offered?
    “The purposes for which the Mass is offered are: first, to adore God as our Creator and Lord; second, to thank God for His many favors; third, to ask God to bestow His blessings on all men; fourth, to satisfy the justice of God for the sins committed against Him.”
    “The Eucharist is a true sacrifice, not just a commemorative meal, as “Bible Christians” insist.”

    These 2 quotes are taken from: “Catholic Encyclopedia (Sacrifice of the Mass) & “The Sacrifice of the Mass” (www.catholic.com/library/sacrifice of the mass)
    Since, at the mass, R.C’s believe that Jesus is actually present in the elements, this is tantamount to sacrificing his body all over again for the remission of sins. Note Heb. 9v22:…”without shedding of blood there is no remission.” But on Christ’s sacrifice for our sins Heb.10v18 tells me: “Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.”
    Jesus offered one sacrifice for sins for ever. (Heb. 10v12). He loves you as an individual and it is His will that you find the truth. This is not about joining a church etc. but about trusting the Lord Jesus to come into your heart, to make you a new person; about having a daily relationship with He who gave Himself for you.
    Please don’t take my word, or any one elses for this… When you approach the Word of God, with a sincere desire in your heart for absolute truth, He will reveal that truth to you.

    • Hi there readywriter! I agree with pretty much everything you said in your post except the “tantamount” statement. Jesus also said, “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you shall not have life within you.” He gave us the ability to do that by commanding His apostles to “Do this in remembrance of Me.” Jesus offered Himself once for all, and gives us the opportunity to participate in the true Passover meal by the representation of that same sacrifice. It’s not a different sacrifice. God bless friend.

  134. Dear Readywriter,

    What Bob said. I too agree completely that the mass is a sacrifice. In fact there are many progressives in the Catholic Church that tend to want to deny this fact and pretend it is only a meal.

    The only thing you still don’t seem to understand is that the Mass is not another sacrifice. We don’t sacrifice Jesus over and over and over. We RE-Present that one and only sacrifice. It is a mystery and something we can do only by the power of God through the ministry of the Catholic priesthood.

    Bob makes a crucial point. Jeus said, 7 or 8 times, very plainly in John 6 that we must eat His flesh and drink His blood. The clarity with which He said this is why many of his disciples left him in John 6.

    Protestants say they take the Bible literally. But they always try to explain away John 6 and other similar passages. Why is that……….?

  135. Joseph D:The Lord’s supper is not however the actual flesh and blood of Christ. This may be demonstrated by looking at the passages of Scripture that speak about it, such as Matt. 26: 28 when He say, ” For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” We may understand that at that time His blood was not actually shed for sins and was not actually in the cup. His blood was still in His viens.

    BFHU: That is certainly a legitimate interpretation. However we interpret it differently. He said, THIS IS MY BLOOD..We believe Jesus was not lying but telling the truth b/c by His divine power He was able to do all things and make the wine into His blood while it was still in His viens. It is a Mystery.

    Joseph: If Jesus’ blood was really in the cup, then Christ would not have gone to the cross, because His blood would have already been “shed” for the remission of sins and would already be in the cup.

    BFHU: You can certainly look at it that way. But we look at is as His blood had to actually be shed in the normal bloody manner of crucifixion. At the last supper He was instituting the sacraments of Priesthood and holy communion.

    Joseph: It was not really in the cup and had not really been shed for sins. He would not have actually suffered for sins, there would simply be a miraculous appearance of His blood, and His blood would mystically remove sins from all who partake of the cup. What need then for His suffering and dying on the cross?

    BFHU: Jesus was instituting a memorial feast of His body and blood at the last supper. He was beginning His early celebration of the Passover meal with His disciples b/c He knew He would be dead for the actual feast. What He did was begin the Passover Feast at the Last Supper but FINISHED (It is finished) it on the cross. He enclosed His suffering and crucifixion within the celebration of His Passover and transformed it into the sacrifice of the mass.

    In Egypt in order to be saved from the Angel of death the faithful ATE a perfect lamb.

    We eat the body and blood of the Lamb of God for eternal life.

    In Egypt the faithful also put the blood of the lamb on their doorposts with a branch of hyssop.

    Jesus, on the cross, was given a little sour wine on a branch of hyssop. And wine turns into the blood of the Lamb of God at the mass.

    Joseph: Those things are symbolic of His suffering the wrath of God against sin, which He did suffer in reality.

    BFHU: We take Jesus much more literally than you do and reject the idea that this was symbolic.

    Joseph: It is this suffering that purchased for God the right to forgive sins. Without His enduring this, God could not forgive sins in a righteous and just way. When we speak of the blood removing sin, it is not litterally the blood that removes sin directly, like a spiritual detergent, it is figurative of His litterally suffering and bearing the very real wrath of God against all sin.

    BFHU: Joseph, has someone told you that we do not believe that Jesus had to really suffer and die? You seem to be arguing against a straw man. We agree that Jesus suffered and died to save us from our sins.

  136. Hello bfuh You say in your first paragraph: “What Bob said: I too agree completely that the mass is a sacrifice.” In your 2nd parag. you say: “The only thing you don’t seem to understand is that the mass is not another sacrifice.” Could you clarify this?
    As for John 6, those who came to Jesus while He walked upon this earth and trusted in Him were recipients of the “Bread of Life” – clearly in the spiritual sense because Jesus was here physically as well as spiritually at that time.
    Read also: 1Cor. 11v23-25: “…”the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye do it, in remembrance of me.
    I believe that the key words are: “In remembrance of me.”
    It’s good that you believe that Jesus suffered and died to save us from our sins. If we repent and put our trust in this finished work at Calvary, THEN the good works that we do (as Christians who are born again by the Spirit of God) are evidence of our new life in Him.

  137. Dear Ready,

    The Mass is a MYSTERY.

    CCC1362 The Eucharist is the memorial of Christ’s Passover, the making present and the sacramental offering of his unique sacrifice, in the liturgy of the Church which is his Body. In all the Eucharistic Prayers we find after the words of institution a prayer called the anamnesis or memorial.

    1363 In the sense of Sacred Scripture the memorial is not merely the recollection of past events but the proclamation of the mighty works wrought by God for men.184 In the liturgical celebration of these events, they become in a certain way present and real. This is how Israel understands its liberation from Egypt: every time Passover is celebrated, the Exodus events are made present to the memory of believers so that they may conform their lives to them.

    1364 In the New Testament, the memorial takes on new meaning. When the Church celebrates the Eucharist, she commemorates Christ’s Passover, and it is made present the sacrifice Christ offered once for all on the cross remains ever present. “As often as the sacrifice of the Cross by which ‘Christ our Pasch has been sacrificed’ is celebrated on the altar, the work of our redemption is carried out.”186

    1365 Because it is the memorial of Christ’s Passover, the Eucharist is also a sacrifice. The sacrificial character of the Eucharist is manifested in the very words of institution: “This is my body which is given for you” and “This cup which is poured out for you is the New Covenant in my blood.”187 In the Eucharist Christ gives us the very body which he gave up for us on the cross, the very blood which he “poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”188

    1366 The Eucharist is thus a sacrifice because it re-presents (makes present) the sacrifice of the cross, because it is its memorial and because it applies its fruit:

    [Christ], our Lord and God, was once and for all to offer himself to God the Father by his death on the altar of the cross, to accomplish there an everlasting redemption. But because his priesthood was not to end with his death, at the Last Supper “on the night when he was betrayed,” [he wanted] to leave to his beloved spouse the Church a visible sacrifice (as the nature of man demands) by which the bloody sacrifice which he was to accomplish once for all on the cross would be re-presented, its memory perpetuated until the end of the world, and its salutary power be applied to the forgiveness of the sins we daily commit.189

    1367 The sacrifice of Christ and the sacrifice of the Eucharist are one single sacrifice:strong> “The victim is one and the same: the same now offers through the ministry of priests, who then offered himself on the cross; only the manner of offering is different.” “And since in this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the Mass, the same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and is offered in an unbloody manner. . . this sacrifice is truly propitiatory.”190

    It is a mystery just like the mystery of the Trinity. The Catholic Church has always believed this. They didn’t make it up in response to Protestant challenges.
    In John 6 Jesus was teaching them about the fact of who He was and what the Last Supper would make clear a year later.

    A memorial sacrifice, rembembrance, in OT and NT does not mean a mere remembering. For the Jews and for the disciples Passover was an entering in to the event of the past in such a way that it is made present. Jesus’ sacrifice happened once in time but it doesn’t stop. It is an eternal sacrifice. At the mass we spiritually leave ordinary time as we know it and enter into ETERNITY and access the Lamb of God. We are there at the foot of the Cross and He is here in a special way in our time b/c we have entered the eternal precincts. It is very Jewish.

    Every time the word for remember is used in the OT it is associated with a real sacrifice and usually the eating of it. The Greek in anamnesis. Protestants do not realize it is not a mere fond remembrance of what Jesus did on the cross.

    You might find these posts interesting:
    Eucharist in the Early Church

    Communion: Symbol Only?

    Sacrifice of the Mass

  138. bfhu, sorry to have to ask you again… but you still didn’t answer my original question. (See above) You stated in parag. 1 that the mass is a sacrifice and in (2) that it isn’t. Which is it? Yet Hebrews tells me of Jesus’ final offering for sin: “Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.” I quote from your extract above:
    “1364 In the New Testament, the memorial takes on new meaning. When the Church celebrates the Eucharist, she commemorates Christ’s Passover, and it is made present the sacrifice Christ offered once for all on the cross remains ever present. “As often as the sacrifice of the Cross by which ‘Christ our Pasch has been sacrificed’ is celebrated on the altar, the work of our redemption is carried out.”186
    The Bible tells us that the work of redemption was carried out once… Read Heb. 9&10.
    Verses 27&28 of Heb. 9:
    “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgement: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he apper the second time without sin unto salvation.”
    The little word “once” appears numerous times throughout the book of Hebrews, I believe for a reason.

  139. Dear Ready,

    What did I say in paragraph 2 that led you to think I said the mass was not a sacrifice? I DO believe it is a sacrifice so you must have misunderstood what I was saying. Please give me the exact quote.

    We DO BELIEVE THAT CHRIST DIED ONCE. But I seem unable to communicate to you that:

    BUT, Christ’s sacrifice is ETERNAL.

    It is ONE sacrifice but because it is ETERNAL

    IT NEVER STOPS.

    IT KEEPS ON GIVING TO US ITS BENEFITS

    AT THE MASS, IN A MYSTICAL WAY WE LEAVE EARTH AND ENTER HEAVENLY ETERNITY

    That is why when John sees Jesus in Heaven He looks like a Lamb that has been slain.

    Revelation 5:6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.

    One other difficulty you may be encountering in trying to understand me is that Protestantism is an either/or culture in which scripture means either this or that. But in Catholic culture a scripture can be both this and that.
    Because we believe scripture often has a plain literal meaning AND a deeper spiritual/theological meaning. We accept Both.

    We do not sacrifice Jesus again and again. Jesus doesn’t die on our altars again and again. We are not offering another sacrifice and then another and another.

    We ENTER IN TO THAT ONE SACRIFICE OF JESUS CHRIST that resides in ETERNITY.

    We RE-PRESENT to the Father the ONE sacrifice Jesus made.

    We partake again and again and again of the ONE sacrifice.

    We are still stuck in time. We are the ones who must repeatedly enter in, repeatedly re-present, and repeatedly partake of that ONE sacrifice.

    We are the ones who must retun and return and return, do again, and again and again. NOT JESUS.

    As I said before. This is a mystery. Protestantism seems unable to incorporate mystery, unless it has already been firmly entrenched in their Protestant Culture, as in the incarnation, Trinity, etc.

    But I am still curious as to what it was that made you think I denied that the mass was a sacrifice in the 2nd paragraph. Please let me know. Thanks.

    • JD. It seems that Catholics are very much into mysticism.

      BFHU: Not in a New Age way. It is basically an acknowlegement that God’s ways are above our ways.

      JD. You seem to misunderstand forgiveness and think it is somehow a magical thing.

      BFHU: That is unchaitable Joseph. We do not belive in magic. I agree with your next two paragraphs or so.

      JD. Observing the Lord’s Supper is a part of continuing in faithful obedience and walking in the light, so it is necessary, but we have no biblical reason to believe that it has a mystical effect on partakers. It pleases God and demonstrates our dependence on Christ

      BFHU: For what biblical reason does anyone need to have a “biblical reason”? Your reliance on scripture alone is not itself stated in the Bible.

      JD.I wouldn’t be so bold about claiming that I sacrifice Christ over and over.

      BFHU: I see that you do not care that we DO NOT sacrifice Jesus over and over. I give up. I don’t know how to be any more clear. We too believe in ONE SACRIFICE. We do NOT offer ANOTHER sacrifice. But I guess you think I am lying.

      JD.I know that you do not care to have biblical authority to do and believe what you do.

      BFHU: You are wrong. The Bible IS the Infallible and authoritative Word of God. We believe NOTHING that contradicts Scripture. But we interpret scripture in continuity with historical Christianity. I have said many times that what we believe contradicts Protestant INTERPRETATION of Scripture. We have a different and perfectly legitimate interpretation of those scriptures. This is NOT the same thing as contradicting Sacred Scripture. Protestants think it is because they are unaware that they interpret scripture. They are in denial that the thousands of Protestant denominations are the result of different Protestant interpretations of scripture. Each one thinks they have the infallible interpretation.

      I live in the same time and culture as you and Readywriter. And yet both of you have misinterpreted what I am trying to write. How much more difficult must it be to read scripture acurately, 2000 years later and living in a vastly different culture? Basically, if you cannot interpret my words correctly, with me here to point out errors in your interpretation how can you trust yourself to interpret writings from 2000 years ago. Do you believe your interpretation is infallible?

      JD.I know that you only really care about what the Roman Catholic Church leadership says, but who are they?

      BFHU:That is NOT True either. There are those in leadership in the Catholic Church who are heretics right now. Priests, Bishops and Archbishops. I do not trust them. I trust the Faith that has been handed down for 2000 years from faithful men able to teach. I am a Catechism Catholic. Our Pope now is Holy and so was JPII. You have to realize when you see scandals in the Catholic Church, even Protestant Churches, Our Enemy has his guns trained on the leaders b/c then he can demoralize thousands with the fall of one man.

      JD. Jesus I know, and Paul I know, but who are they?

      BFHU: They are the ones Jesus said we should listen to

      Luke 10:16 “He who listens to you listens to me; he who rejects you rejects me; but he who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”

      They are the Faithful Men Able to Teach:

      2 Timothy 2:2 The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

      The Catholic Church is the Church founded by Jesus on Peter that Jesus promised would not be overcome by Hell.

      Matthew 16:18 “I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.

      They are men Jesus promised to be with forever.

      Mt. 28:20 and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

  140. Hello bfhu,These are your words from the 2nd parag: “The only thing you still don’t seem to understand is that the Mass is not another sacrifice.” However, maybe you meant something different. Anyway, we could debate for ages and nothing would change with regard to either your opinion or mine on this issue and others concerning the R.C. church. I wouldn’t be so naive as to think that I could make anyone think differently, even by quoting scripture.
    At the end of the day it comes down to this: Can an individual be assured in his or her heart of a certain home in heaven? I believe – yes. The Bible teaches – yes. However, if you will ask even the Pope – he will tell you that he cannot be sure.
    As an individual, I sincerely have this assurance in my heart – because of what Jesus did for me at Calvary, and because I repented and accepted His free gift which was not only given to me – but to you and every other human being in this world.
    I will pray for you that you will find the truth – but beware of other cults!

    • Dear Ready,
      Oh….OK….yes but if you notice

      I did not say “The mass is NOT a sacrifice.”

      I said, “The mass is not ANOTHER sacrifice.”

      I think you just misread it.

      Of course I would like for you to understand what the Catholic Church teaches and convert but if not I would hope by this dialogue that you would at least see that we have a legitimate point of view and scriptures for our faith as much as Protestants. The difference is INTERPRETATION. Just like the sentence above. You interpreted it one way and I interpret it another way.

      When the Pope says he cannot be sure he doesn’t mean that he is insecure about his salvation all the time. No, we are secure for the moment. Especially if we have no unrepented/unconfessed grave sins on our conscience. But we are not so presumptuous as to assert that we WILL attain Heaven. Even St. Paul was not certain.

      Phil. 3:11“…in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. 12 Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of , I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

      God has not removed our free will so there always remains the chance that Our Enemy could overcome us and we could fall away from salvation.

      1 Timothy 4:1
      [ Apostasy ] But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons

  141. Jospeph Duran: I refer to your statement: “Protestants try to say that the people mentioned in this passage were never saved, but I have capitalized seven different things that indicate that he is referring to saved individuals, including “…RENEW THEM AGAIN TO REPENTANCE…” and “…THEY CRUCIFY AGAIN FOR THEMSELVES THE SON OF GOD…”. If they had never repented or been partakers of Christ’s crucifixion then the Scripture would not say “RENEW them AGAIN to repentance” or “crucify AGAIN the Son of God.”
    I would call myself a Protestant, yet I believe the same as you with regard to this passage.

    • Dear “ready”,

      Wow! Cheers for you then. I am happy to hear it. I have read and listened to many denominational preachers and I am unaware of any modern Protestant denomination that teaches that one may end up being ultimately lost after their initial salvation. Perhaps Mormons or Jehovah’s Witnesses teach that one may lose salvation, I am not sure, but I would classify these religious groups separately from Protestants.

      Most of the Protestant preachers I have heard would claim that one is a cult if they teach that you may lose your salvation. However, the Bible teaches that one may lose their salvation, so I believe it. Of course, one may twist the Scriptures in various ways and say, “well there is some remote possibility that one may interpret this passage in such and such a way in order to see that you really can’t lose your salvation…” but I am only interested in seeing what God has actually said. I am glad to hear that you seem interested in that as well.

      Have a wonderful week, and may God bless your continued search for Him and His Truth.

      • Joseph, I agreed about losing salvation. My husband wrote a two volume book, Once Save Always Saved IF You Don’t Fall Away.
        Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel, Nazarenes, Assemblies of God, and the Catholic Church do not believe in Eternal Security.

  142. To all: I believe in “conditional eternal secruity,” as portrayed in many passages including 1John 1v7… “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” Verses from Ezekiel (inc. 3v18-21) show that our security is conditonal upon our walk with the Lord. However, this does not mean that I cannot be sure in my own heart of a home in Heaven at this moment. Right now I love the Lord and am ready, by faith, to meet Him when either – He returns, or I die. He has given me an assurance of sins forgiven and a home in heaven. I have an acquaintance who tells me that I must “feel so insecure,” because of my belief in condtional eternal security – and I try to assure her otherwise. Romans 8v1: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” As long as I walk in His light I can say with St. Paul: “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” (11Tim. 4v8)
    We must have that assurance in our hearts that today (if the Lord returned) we would love His appearing.
    This assurance is not presumptious – but it is the peace that God imparts to us, when we have trusted in the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ to cleanse us and keep us.

  143. Ready,
    I completly agree with you on conditional security.

  144. I found this site and thank you for sharing your story: you have been far more charitable with some of the posters than I could be. That’s not untypical of a Catholic Christian to be so kind and you are to be commended for it.

    I’m a lapsed LCMS (Lutheran/MO-Synod) but for years I’ve been drawn to the sacramental Church. As a Lutheran, like with many Protestants, I had a disdain for Catholicism, and for that reason, it was easier to study the Orthodox Church. In reading about Eastern Orthodoxy, I came to understand that the Bible is a product of the Church, not vice versa. Orthodoxy teaches that the Bible and Tradition are not at odds: the Bible is written Tradition, but there is also an Oral Tradition (it’s like the British Constitution, in that part of it is written but much of it isn’t). (Orthodox readers, please know that I am not an Orthodox convert, but I have immense respect for the Orthodox Christians: to this day, I make the sign of the cross as the Orthodox do and I won’t say the filioque when I recite the Nicene Creed). The Bible is not a collection of books; it is a selection of books. The word “Trinity” doesn’t even appear in a single verse, and is there even a Biblical definition for sacrament (or mystery, as the Eastern churches prefer to say)?

    I am in a quiet process of joining the Church (going to Mass, Catechism discussion group, etc.); I feel like a sheep gently being returned to the flock (although I’m sure there are those who say I’m being led astray by wolves). I have not shared this to my family: there is definitely a pronounced anti-Catholic bias that Lutheran conditioning cultivates. One of several things that has delayed this “swim across the Tiber” is how different groups (including the Orthodox) insist that theirs is the ONE TRUE CHURCH! I tried to temper those statements in my mind with “there is One True Invisible Church which has members from all the Churches…only God knows them.” The notion that all other churches are heretics or pagans registers in my mind as provincial, chauvinistic, and utterly uncharitable.

    How I am understanding this situation of God and man now, is that in the Old Testament, we get the story of God’s People, how the tribes become a nation and get a king, then split into two realms, how one is destroyed but has a remnant that is despised by their neighbors to the south. To my mind, Christianity has followed a similar path: the communities of believers became a Church, then got severed, whether by schisms or protestations. Just as the kings of ancient Israel and Judea were imperfect, sometimes did vile things, so have the church leaders been over the centuries. Some of us might even be a diaspora wanting to return to the land of our God’s Temple.

    (For what it’s worth, I still believe that the Jews have a part in God’s Plan: I view them as Jesus’s distant cousins on earth who are embarrassed of Him, but for His sake, I feel very protective of them, not so to convert them by the sword as Luther might have wanted, but so that they can live and serve God’s Plan.)

    Sorry, I’ve rambled and I know I’ve made myself a target. Please know that my agenda is my own and I have no expertise on Catholicism, Orthodoxy, or even my native Lutheran Church. My heart and soul are longing to join the Church and partake in the Sacraments; I enjoy going to Mass and look to Mary and the rest of saints not as heathen gods, but as the moon and planets reflecting the sun that is Christ. (An imperfect analogy, but I think Catholics and Orthodox might understand.)

  145. Pam,
    Inspired by your storey – in the UK catholics are getting a tough time from the media due to the forthcoming visit from the pope and the seemingly never ending coverage of child abuse scandals. I started this day seriously doubting why I still believe at all but having read your storey I will remain a catholic, hopefully my faith will strengthen and grow again.
    Thanks
    James

  146. How can anyone believe in eternal salvation? The novel idea has only been around 200 years or so. The “original” Protestants do not believe in it either. It’s legalism in the extreme, to think that salvation is earned forever by making an act of contrition at one particular moment in time. The bible has consistently taught that we have to live out our faith. Thankfully, great preachers like Billy Graham has also arrived at authentic Christianity by recognizing the errors and flawed theology of fundamentalist evangelicalism. I think that this is a great example of how some people “twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures” (2 Pet 3:16).

  147. Dear Surkiko,

    What is the term “legalism” referring to biblically?

    What part of the Bible condemns doing just what God commands, according to God’s command, by faith in Him, and teaching others to do likewise?

    What convinces you that Billy Graham arrived at “authentic Christianity”?

    Sincerely,

    Joe

  148. Joe, your questions are fair. Billy Graham and others have arrived at authentic Christianity because they are in agreement with the apostolic faith being handed down faithfully for 2000 years. Eternal salvation is just a novel and strange doctrine (e’ven from an angel of light) which distorts the original good news of salvation. The sinner’s profession at altar calls is not an end in itself. That’s why Jesus says that there will be a separation of the goats and sheep in Final Judgment, and that not all who cried “Lord, Lord” will enter the Kingdom. The snow-covered dunghill legend had misled many to destruction. I don’t think that I need to define legalism. It’s all common sense, I think.

    • Hi Surkiko,

      So you do not believe in the “Once Saved Always Saved” doctrine. Good. Clearly, that is a false teaching. I believe that the Mr. Graham you mentioned does believe and teach this false doctrine, unfortunately.

      Do you believe in the “Sinners Prayer Salvation” doctrine? Is this the same as the “Faith Only” doctrine?

      According to your belief, at what point in a person’s life does God begin to consider them “saved” and a Christian?

      As far as legalism, it seems that the Protestant “churches” teach that it is wrong to teach that men must obey God in order to be saved.

      However, Jesus said,

      ” 13Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
      14Ye are my friends, IF YE DO WHATSOEVER I COMMAND YOU.
      (John 15: 13-14; KJV).” (It seems evident that He is saying that He will die for His friends, and that men are His friends IF THEY OBEY HIS COMMANDS. JD)

      and,

      “31Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, IF YE CONTINUE IN MY WORD, then are ye my disciples indeed;

      32And ye shall know the truth, and the truth SHALL MAKE YOU FREE (John 8: 31-32; KJV).”

      and,


      48He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day (John 12: 48; KJV).

      and,

      “21Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that DOETH THE WILL OF MY FATHER which is in heaven (Matthew 7: 21; KJV).”

      and,

      ” 21He that hath my commandments, AND KEEPETH THEM, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me SHALL BE LOVED BY MY FATHER, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

      22Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

      23Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, HE WILL KEEP MY WORDS: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

      24He THAT LOVETH ME NOT keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me (John 14: 21-24; KJV).”

      Of course, we must obey God from a sincere heart of love. We must desire Him and His good pleasure above all else. God is not mocked, and we cannot obey mechanistically to establish our own righteousness.

      Additionally, I believe that we ought to believe all that God said concerning “Alter Calls” and the prayers of sinners. To my knowledge and understanding, He speaks nothing of “Alter Calls” and of sinners prayers He does not hear them as he does those who are His people. Those taught to pray for forgiveness in the New Testament Covenant are already Christians. They have already heard, believed, repented, confessed that Jesus is the Lord, and submitted to allow themselves to be baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Moreover, they continue in obedience, walking in the light as He is in the light and thus have fellowship with Him. They do have access to the Throne of Grace by the blood of the Lamb, but non-Christians do not have such access.

      Do I understand your statements appropriately? What do you believe concerning these things?

      Sincerely,

      Joe

  149. My thoughts: There is a wideness of God’s mercy. We cannot dismiss “altar calls” and sinner’s prayers” as unbiblical and thus unwarranted. There is the ordinary and then there are the extraordinary means of salvation. We cannot fully fathom the mystery of salvation and the greatness of our God. If OSAS is a faith without work, it is dead according to James. We have a moral certitude of salvation if we persevere in faith, hope and love. Paul talks about fighting the good fight, keeping the faith and finishing the race.

    • Dear Surkiko,

      Amen to much of what you said. You are so correct about the faith without works being dead. You are also absolutely correct that we must persevere in faith, hope, and love. We must endure in the one true faith until the end. However, I cannot agree with all of what you said, and maybe I am being obtuse, but I am not sure what OSAS is.

      Please understand that I am not trying to be mean to you or anyone else. I am simply trying to teach what God in fact says. We cannot be saved in a way that is contrary to what God has said. God is true and therefore does not contradict Himself. We can see that the Scriptures do not contradict one another. If they did, we would not have confidence in them. In the same way, if men later preach some thing that is contrary to what we know the Scriptures say, we may be certain that it is not from God

      Furthermore, we may be confident that He does in deed want all men to be saved (2 Peter 3: 9) and thus will not leave us in the dark about what He requires of us for this New Covenant that cost Him so much, lest it be in vain.

      When the Jews who believed the message of Peter, which he preached on the first Pentecost after the resurrection of the Lord, asked what they must do, Peter answered by the Spirit of God, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2: 38).”

      Furthermore, if you carefully study Paul’s conversion, you will find that he did not receive the forgiveness of sins on the road to Damascus when he met the Lord. He did not receive the forgiveness of sins during his three days of fasting and praying after he met Jesus and obeyed the command of the Lord to go to Damascus and wait for a preacher whom Christ said would tell him what he must do. He did not receive the forgiveness of sins until he was baptized as Ananias said, “Why tarriest thou, arise and BE BAPTIZED AND WASH AWAY THY SINS, calling on the name of the Lord (Acts 22: 16).” (See also Acts 9: 1-18 and Acts 22: 1-16). Paul’s sins still remained until this moment, and were washed away by God in His baptism.

      We also have a statement by the inspired Peter in 1 Peter 3: 21 where he affirms, “21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,…(NKJV)”

      We may also see that baptism is the point at which one receives the circumcision of the heart, our old man of sin is crucified and is buried with Christ, and our new man is raised with Him.

      “11 In Him you were also CIRCUMCISED WITH THE CIRCUMCISION MADE WITHOUT HANDS, by PUTTING OFF THE BODY OF THE SINS[a] OF THE FLESH, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried with Him IN BAPTISM, IN WHICH you also WERE RAISED with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead (Colossians 2: 11-12; NKJV).”

      “3 Or do you not know that AS MANY OF US AS WERE BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST JESUS were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him THROUGH BAPTISM into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so WE ALSO SHOULD WALK IN NEWNESS OF LIFE.
      5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that OUR OLD MAN WAS CRUCIFIED WITH HIM, THAT THE BODY OF SIN MIGHT BE DONE AWAY WITH, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin. 8 NOW IF we died with Christ, we believe that we SHALL ALSO LIVE WITH HIM, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:3-11; NKJV).”

      This is an inclusive and exclusive statement. It includes all who have been baptized into Christ and excludes all who have not been. Those who have been baptized have had their old man of sin crucified with Christ and done away with, and received the circumcision of the heart, made without hands.

      Paul says in Galatians, “27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ (Galatians 3: 27; NKJV).” Another inclusive and exclusive statement.

      These things should not surprise us because in the so-called great commission Jesus commanded,

      “18…All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28: 18b). 15 Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16: 15), and make disciples of all the nations, BAPTIZING them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28: 19), 16 He who believes AND IS BAPTIZED WILL BE SAVED; but he who does not believe will be condemned (Mark 16: 16), 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen (Matthew 28: 20).

      And just ten days after Jesus’ ascension, Peter preached the inspired command that all they that believed ought to repent, and that every one of them were to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS, and that then they would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

      Jesus also said, “15”If you love me, you will obey what I command (John 14: 15; NKJV).”

      The question may then be asked, are alter calls and sinners prayers from God or from men? Who can say they are from God? God told us all we need in order to be saved, and He clearly makes baptism a necessary element among several others.

      Prayer may be necessary, but no one in the Scriptures ever prayed unto salvation, including Paul. Once baptized, Christians are commanded to pray to God and ask forgiveness of Him, but not before that time. God is no respecter of persons and who would believe that Paul would preach any other plan of salvation than had been taught to him, and which he obeyed? Is God obligated to obey our whims, or are we obligated to obey God’s commands?

      Yes, God’s mercy is very great and perhaps even wide, depending on how one looks at it (Remembering that He commanded that we enter in at the STRAIGHT AND NARROW GATE). Nevertheless, all of God’s grace is found in Christ. There is no grace outside of Him, but a certain fearful expectation of the wrath of God. He is the only way, truth and life. No man can come to the Father but by Him, and the way to put on Christ is clearly via baptism, by His will, authority and commandment, and through our faith in Him who raised Christ from the dead.

      I hope that you will seriously consider these Scriptures. Most people simply go by what makes them feel good and seems to make sense to them. They who are not truly good, use their own point of view and feelings as their standard measure of what is good, instead of looking to the Words of Him who is the only One Who is truly good, and trusting what He says. They imagine who God is and what He must be like, and they base their faith and “love of God” on those things, but the True and Living God they despise, because they actually despise His will and the things He actually teaches and commands, which have been revealed to us through His Word, the Holy Bible. How sad that is after all He has done for us!

      Much more could be said.

      Thank you for your time. May the Lord bless your continued study.

      Sincerely,

      Joe

  150. I agree baptism is necessary for salvation. However, there’s still the perplex question of God’s salvific plan for those who have never heard the gospel through no fault of their own (thus never rejected it consciously). In Rom 2, Paul spoke of those “who have not the law…their conscience also bears witness and their conflicting thoughts accuse or perhaps excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.” Our God is perfect justice and He wills that all men be given equal opportunity to be saved. The necessity of water baptism is a normative rather than an absolute necessity. Can’t put God in a box ….

  151. franas,
    You are right. God can welcome any one He wishes into Heaven. He is not bound by His statutes but we are. What a lot of people do is decide that if “God can….” then i can too.
    For instance:
    If God can take care of Himself in His Eucharistic Presence then we don’t need to.

    So what if we don’t take reverent care not to desecrate a single crumb of the blessed Eucharist.

    So what, if after I receive in the hand Jesus’ presence in a crumb falls to the ground and is trampled underfoot.

    We don’t need to try to have the altar linens perfectly clean and white b/c mass offered in the forest in a persecuted country may not have perfectly clean altar cloths. ( I just heard this one last week)

    These are rationalizations to mediocrity and irreverence. And it is true that some will be saved without baptism but that does not mean that we can then disobey Christ and be lackadaisical about baptism.

    • Hey Joe, In case you haven’t caught on, “franas” is “surkiko.” I didn’t realize that I signed on with a different user ID. Sorry.

      Hey bfhu, you always have a very discerning mind. Very refreshing to read what you write all the time.

      • Dear franas,

        haha. No, I had not caught on. Thank you for letting me know. I would like to reply to your last comment, as well as to some others, but I haven’t had time.

        For now let me say this, while it may sound good to say things like, “(God) is not bound by His statutes but we are,” we must remember a key fact, it is impossible for God to lie. God has never contradicted Himself. IF men will remember this important point, they will be saved from much error.

        Thank you.

        Joe

  152. Hey Joe,

    You are right that God cannot contradict Himself, but how does this applies to the necessity of water baptism being normative rather than an absolute necessity (or that God is not bound by His statues but we are)? Many things in the bible is not an “either/or” unless it is clearly stated to be so. That’s why all the Protestant “solas” (sola scriptura, sola fide, etc.) are heretic doctrines. I don’t see any where that says water baptism ALONE saves. We cannot be more scriptural than the bible.

    Regards.

    • Dear surkiko,

      That is a good question. Because of time constraint, I will not be able to give you an exhaustive answer. I will give a brief reply now and try to give a more thorough one later.

      First, God is using human languages that He created in order to communicate with us. God created us and made us capable of understanding communication. There are certain laws to understanding language, if there were not, it would be impossible to understand speech. We would be able to interpret any form of communication in any way we wanted. If you wrote something and I misunderstood, you would not even be able to correct me because I could choose to “interpret” your claim that I misunderstood you as your affirmation that I actually did understand you, which would be a clear contradiction of meaning and intent! What would determine that my “interpretation” is faulty if not the logical rules of language and communication? How do I even know that you addressed your comment above to me?

      Furthermore, we see that the biblical authors teach us some facts about interpreting the Bible that can help keep us from error. For example, “Hebrews” tells us that there had to be a change of the law from the Old Testament covenant to the New Testament covenant because Jesus is our High Priest. How does this conclusion necessarily follow from this fact about Jesus? The author of Hebrews tells us that because Jesus was of the Tribe of Judah, He could not be a priest according to the Law of Moses since Moses did not say anything about the tribe of Judah when he spoke concerning priesthood. Notice that because Moses did not mention the tribe of Judah he clearly did not say that the members of the tribe of Judah could not be priests. Nevertheless, it was not necessary for him to say such. It was already clear that the members of Judah could not be priests by the absence of including Judah in the statements he did make about priesthood.

      God does not waste His time trying to tell us everything that is not allowed. Often He simply authorizes a specific thing, which by necessary implication, disallows all other things. Noah was told to build the Ark using gopherwood; therefore, he had no power or authority to build with anything other than that kind of material. God did not have to say, “Do not build with …or with…or with…” Moses said that the priests were to be of the tribe of Levi, therefore, there could be no priest of the tribe of Judah according to the law that was given through Moses.

      Now, concerning baptism, the Scriptures that are breathed by God and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, and able to make the man of God complete and to thoroughly equip him unto every good work (2 Timothy 3: 16-17), teach us what baptism is and what it is for.

      Mark 16: 15-16 says,

      “15And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

      16He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned (Mark 16: 15-16, KJV).”

      Colossians 2: 11-12 teaches that we receive the circumcision of the heart, the removal of sins, that we are buried with Christ, and that we are risen with Christ, in baptism through faith. It reads,

      “11In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

      12Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead (Colossians 2: 11-12, KJV).”

      Romans 6: 1-8 tells us that through baptism we die with Christ and therefore we have confidence that we will also live with him. It teaches that those who have been baptized have their old man of sin and death crucified with Christ, which by implication is not true of those who have not been baptized, etc. This passage is speaking specifically of those who have been baptized into Christ and thus excludes all who have not been. It reads as follows:

      “1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?

      2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?

      3Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

      4Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

      5For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

      6Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

      7For he that is dead is freed from sin.

      8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him (Romans 6: 1-8, KJV):”

      Similarly, Galatians 3: 27 tells us,

      “27For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”

      1 Peter 3: 19-22 says plainly that baptism now saves us as assuredly as the Arc saved Noah and His family. It says it this way,

      ” 19By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

      20Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

      21The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

      22Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him (1 Peter 3: 19-22, KJV).”

      Now, we ought to note Luke 7: 28-30:

      “28For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.

      29And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John.

      30But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him (Luke 7: 28-30, KJV).”

      The Baptism of John was from God, and those who did not go out to be baptized by John are said to have rejected the council of God against themselves, while those who were baptized by him are said to have justified God by their obedience to Him.

      In the New Testament covenant, those who knew only John’s baptism (ie. they were baptized according to a baptism from God, but they were not baptized according to the New Testament covenant.) had to be baptized again in the name of Jesus for the remission of sins (Acts 19: 1-7).

      Paul’s conversion is very telling. Paul met Jesus and realized that the Old Testament Scriptures, which he knew well, were indeed speaking of Jesus, and that all of what the Christians said of Jesus was true. He then obeyed Christ and went into Damascus to wait for the preacher Jesus would send. Paul fasted and prayed earnestly for three days until finally the preacher came and commanded that he be baptized to wash away his sins. In spite of his new found faith and earnest fasting and prayers, his sins still abode on him. It was not until he was baptized that his sins were washed away (Acts 9: 3-17; 22: 6-16).

      Since the Scriptures do not give us authorization to teach that men may be saved without baptism, we would be wrong to teach such. When we preach the gospel, we must preach and command baptism of those who believe, as Jesus said,

      “18And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

      19Go ye therefore, and teach all nations (Matthew 28: 18-19a, KJV), and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16: 15b, KJV).
      baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost (Matthew 28: 19b, KJV): 16He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned (Mark 16: 16, KJV). 20Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Matthew 28: 20, KJV).”

      We cannot say that God may save an intelligent adult who has not obeyed the gospel any more than we may say that God may have saved from the flood of Noah, anyone other than the eight souls who were aboard the Arc, of whom Peter says they were disobedient, they were preached to by Jesus in the Spirit, and they are now in prison (1 Peter 3: 18-20).

      I am sorry this turned out to be longer than I intended. However, much more could be said. Thank you for your time and thoughtful consideration.

      Sincerely,

      Joe

      • Hello Joe,

        I think that we can agree that baptism is necessary for salvation. But sill, I don’t think that we can limit God’s mercy to only those who are lucky enough to be in the “right” place and time and circumstances [Sorry, no Southern Baptists! Or Moses or Noah - Born too early (B.C.)]. That’s why the Church talks about baptisms of desire and blood. Think of the “Good Thief” whom Jesus promised to be with Him in paradise; obviously, he couldn’t come down from the cross and be baptised. We cannot be too legalistic about baptism. There’s no magic about it. Afterall, we read in Rom 10:9-10: “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” We need to be properly disposed to receive the saving grace of God in baptism.

        I previously quoted Rom 2: Paul spoke of those “who have not the law…their conscience also bears witness and their conflicting thoughts accuse or perhaps excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.” Now, if you espouse a strict interpretation of baptism, you will indeed make God contradict Himself (‘cos here, baptism is not mentioned at all). Of course, God does not contradict Himself. It’s man who takes the bible in parts and pieces without harmony with the complete bible (in a sectarian manner). God makes man in His image, not the other way around. It’s thus very dangerous to put God, so to speak, in a box. In his limited and mortal being, man cannot comprehend how God can write straight with crooked lines. God’s love and mercy is immensely bountiful. It’s our duty to carry out the will of the Father and spread the gospel to everyone and everywhere, baptising in the name of the Trinity. In the end, God alone will judge the heart of those who believe and are baptised, those who are unable to receive the Christian message through no fault of their own, and/or those who accepted a truncated message due to the imperfect preaching of man.

        Also, as far as doctrines of faith are concerned, they are NOT a matter for an individual to re-interpret or re-invent for him- or herself. Even for Paul after fourteen years and as an apostle to the Gentiles, he went back to Jerusalem to seek confirmation that what he was preaching was in line with the Church “lest somehow I should be running or had run in vain” (Gal 1:1-2). So it is also important to rely on apostolic witnesses to properly interpret important doctrines of faith. You are unfortunately 2000 years removed from it. I hope that I am making some sense.

        Regards,

  153. . Truly, even Paul states is Christ divided? Don’t say “I follow Apollos, I follow Paul or Cephis?. CHRIST IS NOT DIVIDED. I have to laugh at the foolishness of it all sometimes. I work in a hospital and on the admission sheet it asks for your “RELIGION” religion OK? Those who are of the Islam faith always state “ISLAM” . Us followers of Christ rarely confess that we are CHRISTIANS but will proudly state “Catholic” or “Church of England” or “Baptist” etc on the form. Religion for a follower of Christ =Christianity folks.Stop being embarrassed to state that you are a CHRISTIAN. Next time someone asks you your religion, here is the real test of faith -will you be as proud to confess that you are a “Christian” as much as you would be to state that you ar a “Catholic?” I am not ashamed to be called a Christian , are you?

    • Kim,
      I think you misunderstand. The reality IS that Christ has been divided. The reason for the question on hospital admission is so a cleric of your faith might be called for you when you need one. A baptist would not be very comfortable with a Catholic priest being called to minister to him at death’s door and neither would a Catholic be content with a baptist minister. I don’t think people are ashamed of Christ or claiming to be a Christian.

      • Dear BFHU,

        You make an excellent point, and I agree that many of these people would not shy away from calling themselves Christians; however, you have revealed another important truth, which I think Kim was trying to point out. These are members of different faiths. It is important to realize that Jesus only established one faith.

        If we follow the truth of God’s Word, we will be followers of the true faith and thus Christians indeed, as the Word of God is the seed of the Kingdom. Our connection to God through Jesus Christ comes from our conformity to His truth, and His Word is truth.

        Please consider His Word, the Holy Scriptures very, very carefully.

        Thank you and God bless.

        Joe

  154. Dear Kim,

    I do appreciate what you are saying. I myself do not belong to any denomination, Protestant or Catholic. I believe that each of those denominations stand on a foundation that differs, even if only slightly, from the Word of God, The Holy Bible. I stand firmly on the foundation who is Christ by trusting completely in His Word revealed in the Scriptures. These are the deep things of the mind of God revealed by the Holy Spirit. Indeed Jesus is said to be the Word.

    I am a Christian, plain and simple. I believe God said what He meant to say and means what He said. I try to speak where the Bible speaks and to be silent where the Bible is silent. I have no need of human creeds or Catechisms or traditions. All Scriptures were breathed by God and are profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped unto every good work.

    Jesus made the gospel a reality and He is the head of all things to the church. He is the foundation of His church and His Spirit dwells within her.

    Thanks for your comments Kim.

  155. Christian is my name, Catholic my surname (Christianus mihi nonen est, Catholicus cognomen, St. Pacian, AD 310-391.

    We must love and discern truth. If Jesus founded an authoritative church, then we must obey her in humility and obedience. Denominational Christianity is an American invention (before that in Christian Europe, different strains of Protestantism are just separate political and national “churches”). The state of a divided Christianity is diminishing the ability to proclaim the Gospel because of the disputations and polemics between Christians (“A house divided will not stand” [Mark 3:25] and “A kingdom divided against itself is laid waste” [Matt 12:25]). By misplacing one’s allegiance or even giving a tacit assent by association, a Christian can hinder and contribute to the disruption of the reign and spread of God’s Kingdom. By remaining Protestant, one is participating thus perpetuating the sins and errors of the Reformation. So be a true follower of Jesus Christ and let the “Will of the Father” be done on earth as it is in heaven.
    – Show quoted text -

    • Dear Surkiko,

      Paul said, “Imitate me, as I imitate Christ.” If Paul is not imitating Christ, then neither are we to imitate Paul. We have no authority to follow anyone who is not imitating Christ. We are commanded to earnestly contend for the faith that was once delivered to the saints. Paul condemned the churches in the region of Galatia for following the teaching of men who claimed authority, and who the churches of Galatia believed had authority, because those men taught things that were a perversion of the truth. We must follow what we know to be true rather than what men claiming to have authority may tell us. Paul told the bishops of Ephesus that bishops from among them would rise up and draw many after themselves, and go astray. These bishops would be able to claim to have authority by having a lineage back to the Apostles, because these men were real bishops. Nevertheless, Paul said that they would go astray and draw many after themselves. Clearly, the authority does not rest in ones having a lineage back to the Apostles, but it comes from being in subjection to the truth. Paul commanded us to let those who would preach a perverted gospel to be accursed, even if they are Bishops, Apostles, or even Angels from Heaven. What then has more authority than the truth?

      It is also untrue that the Roman Catholic Church is the church. She does not have a unanimously supported lineage of Popes and bishops as she claims. There are various versions of the succession, and the one they cling to is derived from a man who claims that Peter and Paul founded the church in Rome. Interestingly, Paul indicates that he had never been to Rome until long after the church in Rome had already been established. This proves that Paul did not co-found the church in Rome, and that the source of the list of succession of the Popes is faulty. The only unanimous agreement we can get from the “Apostolic Fathers” is in the books of the New Testament. She also does not have unchanging doctrine, as her doctrine has changed with most of the councils, and we can see that her doctrine is different from that found in the Holy Bible.

      Much more could be said. Thank you for your time. May God bless your continued study of His Word.

      Sincerely,

      Joe

      • Hello Joe,

        The real perversion is bibliolatry. Sola Scriptura is the stepchild.

        As far as reliable ecclesiastical history is concerned, I prefer to believe St. Irenaeus and other early Church Fathers that the church in Rome was founded and organized by Peter and Paul. You are free to disagree but what grief and for what purpose? A mysterious design of Providence brought Peter and Paul to Rome, where they both suffered martyrdom and seal their witness with blood.

        Regards,

  156. “Blessed are the people who worship Jesus on this earth, being called for Eternal Salvation rather than Eternal Judgement”

    How happy are we, that we love Jesus from all our heart , mind and soul , we have already placed a reservation in heaven.

    Jesus is also very happy with everyone that more and more people are coming to him , but seems more confused now.

    It is being very tiring, now a days in heaven, all the angels and saints have been put to work by Jesus.

    The heaven has already been divided into thirty three thousand sections and work still in progress to build more.

    St John is showing that the church is indeed the Bride of Christ (Revelation 19:7-9), but we have 33000 churches now

    Jesus is already being condemned by the satan to have more than 33000 brides wherereas this is very controrary in the bible.

    The Bible the most spiritual book for all the christians has become the most controversial book for all the christians.

    Oh no ! what is this , fights are taking place in heaven . Is it between Jesus and Satan ? i exclaimed.

    No no , somebody murmured…..this fights are of every day now. Even Jesus does not know what to do now.

    His one of the apostles, St Peter it seems is not been allowed to enter in one of the sections in heaven.

    oh marvellous ! even his mother is not been allowed to enter in some sections…… oh wat is this

    The holy spirit is confused now…..he has been highly called by some communities high & low.

    Feeling very sorry for St .John the baptist , He is sitiing alone with his community away from the apostles & Jesus.

    The whole heaven is filled with chaos, different types of worships going on….Jesus really does not know , where to go ?????????

    The early christians and the saints are being criticized very heavily for their oral traditions & Beliefs.

    Had it not been their oral traditions , the bible would not have been there and there would been no conflicts amongst the christians.

    The early christians are complaning to Jesus about the internet, languages, his mother and his qoute to let Peter to be the head of his church .

    They are constantly complaining about Jesus Hyperbole’s in his speech maily the ‘ROCK ‘ has become the major issue.

    Satan is seen slowly creeping towards heaven gates, while Peter is busy negotiating with one of the communities in heaven.

    Oh, he is on a friendly visit to Jesus, asking his permission to give an advise to him for the current scenario in Heaven.

    why not have elections here in heaven ! satan exclaimed ….which community is the best…it shud be a democratic christian community.

    Communities are excited , to prove themselves right…each one preparing to be true , but disgracing the other.

    Satan seems very happy now…..but Jesus is crying bitterly ….his body is continously being divided.

    Sources say that Jesus has to die again now.Even God is unhappy , his only son is being sent to earth to die again & again.

    The whole heaven is filled with enmity now …..communities are fighting for the body of christ.

    Hey i cannot believe what i just saw in heaven, contradictory to the first line mentioned in this letter.

    “Blessed are the people who worship Jesus on this earth, but are being called for Eternal Judgement rather than Eternal Salvation”

    Ohhhhhhh it was a very horrible dream , but good it was only a dream….otherwise the number would have increased to 66,000.

    What are we doing brothers & sisters and why we are doing it ….this is the question asked to each one of us.

    The body of Jesus is being contionously divided and the blood of Jesus is being scattered like a blood of a lamb slaughtered at a butcher’s den.

    Is this is what Jesus really wants……Noooo . Be CAREFUL rather , Cos at the day of Eternal Judgement. Jesus might say.

    “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works?” Matthew 7:21-22

    Quoting from the Bible itself , which has been the major tool for some communities to DIVIDE AND RULE

    Salvation thru Faith is a grace of GOD , but is it Faith , the only instrument to have salvation . hmmmm than there should be only one commandment in the Bible. LOVE THE LORD GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART , MIND AND SOUL . But Jesus has given a second commandment also …LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOUR ALSO AS U LOVE YOUR SELF…. It seems the second commandment is not applicable for some communities.

    The question is ” The devil also believes and has faith in Jesus that thru his sacrifice on the cross , Jesus has redeemed the world , so is devil granted a place in heaven.

    The answer is noooo…..The devil inspite of having faith in Jesus cannot do GOOD WORKS which is essential for our salvation and that is the second commandment of Jesus. Faith and Good works are neccessary for our salvation.

    We live in a modern world and man is filled with constant ideas…but we still live on traditions. It is traditions that we come across historical truths…..the passover festivals were held both in the old testament and new testament.

    The successions of the apostles were needed to build the church, had the succession not needed ,than Mathias would not have been succeeded in Judas place .

    Let us come togather to reunite the body of Jesus with a common doctrine, with a common worship and be humble in our behaviour for not everyone is called to interpret his own beliefs but rather share the same belief which is universal.

    The time has come that we shud pray for the lost sheeps in the world who have gone away from us ,bcos it is only the holy spirit to convince these sheeps to come into truth and not humans to convince them. As Jesus said “If they don’t listen to Moses and the prophets,
    neither will they be persuaded if one rises from the dead.’” Lk 16:19-31 .

  157. mr Joseph Duran, please like myself, my heart crys for the lost in the catholic church, so i back you in every way possible, truth is not allowed in this church, and its all man teaching, doctrines, unless god opens up hearts and eyes, for the truth, then its hell for most of them, salvation is christ, and christ only, and Joseph, if anyone leaves a church unless its a full cult type ,,, to move to this church, thats far from truth, my thinking is most were never born again, or really were set free as our christ states, but , email me , george_lloyd57@msn.com, , ,,,,oh john macarthur on utube, does a great job in giving us true understanding, in catholic teaching, may god bless you.george57.

    • You Protestants have too much time on your time. Instead of persecuting Christ and His Church (like Paul did before the scales fell from his eyes), you should be out there visiting the sick, feeding and clothing the poor. Of course, you will reply that you are already eternally secured in salvation so “good works” are not necessary. Well, the heresy will only lead you down the broad and treacherous road of pride and conceitedness. Show me that you are a better witness for Christ by your examples (Love God and love your neighbors) and then may be I will believe you. Never mind the Catholics. Mind your own salvation because it is in real jeopardy now because of all the spiritual trash you have burdened yourself. Thankfully, many of the brightest and boldest of Protestants ministers and scholars are converting to Catholicism because of their great integrity, deep commitment to truth and love for God. Others saw truth but would not leave the security and comfort of their old attachments to take up the cross. And there are also others who bigoted and confused, holding a form of religiousness by idolatring a book instead of abiding with the living Christ, the Word Himself … because of the prejudice and blindness of their own faith traditions.

      • Dear surkiko,

        I believe that you intend to include me in your comment above, so I would remind you that I am not a protestant. I do not seek to reform the Catholic Church. Instead, I would that all men, including Catholics, should repent, shed their false religions entirely and go back to Bible truth and believe and obey God through the voice of Christ’s Apostles and prophets recorded in the Scriptures that God breathed, just as the church that we read about in the Bible.

        That is what my brethren and I do, and we do the work that God puts in front of us to do. I do not believe that faith only saves, as James is clear that faith only cannot save, but is as dead as a corpse. We must perfect our faith by being obedient and doing the will of our Father in Heaven (see James 2; Matthew 7: 21 and many other Scriptures).

        One of the Catholic Church’s biggest errors is teaching that one must believe in the Pope in order to be saved. The entirety of the Bible was written that we might have faith in God and His Son Jesus, and thus be saved. However, if your religion is correct, then all of that is vain if we do not believe in your Pope. All of the work done by God, His Son Jesus, and His prophets and Apostles is vain, because they did not teach us that we must believe in the Pope (only the Pope and his followers teach this), and without that we are lost, according to Roman Catholic Church doctrine. Doesn’t that seem preposterous to you? Doesn’t that fly in the face of 2Timothy 3: 16-17 which teaches that

        “16All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

        17THAT THE MAN OF GOD MAY BE PERFECT, THOROUGHLY FURNISHED UNTO ALL GOOD WORKS” (2 Timothy 3: 16-17; KJV)?

        You see, if the Scriptures are able to make you perfect and to thoroughly equip you unto all good works, and if you must believe in your Pope to be saved, then the Scriptures ought to teach you that you must believe in the Pope to be saved, but they do no such thing. Your entire notion of a Pope rests on your human Traditions and a handful of INFERENCES from the Scriptures (again, they are merely inferences), and there is no way to infer from the Scriptures the notion that one must believe in a hypothetical Pope in order to be saved. That idea comes from Roman Catholic tradition completely.

        Why would God leave something that is absolutely vital to our salvation to be merely inferred by men? He did not do that when it came to faith in His Son.

        Moreover, if it were true that the man of God must believe in your Pope to be saved, and the Scriptures fail to inform the man of God about this important “fact,” how could one say with a strait face that the Scriptures had thoroughly equipped that man of God unto all good works?!

        Much more could be said.

        May God bless your continued study.

        Joe

    • Dear george57,

      I understand your concern for the lost in the Catholic church and all those who have been or will be beguiled by their religion. I have loved ones who have been blinded by it. It is a strong delusion for sure.

      Thank you for your encouragement. I will email you as soon as I can.

      May God bless your continued study.

      Peace and Grace,

      Joe

    • Dear george57,

      I seem to have posted my reply to you below surkiko’s comment. Sorry.

      Joe

      • Hello Joe,

        Merry Christmas and very nice to hear from you again.

        “so I would remind you that I am not a protestant”

        If you are not a Catholic, then you are either a Protestant or a non-Catholic. You are a Protestant because you are outside the established church founded by Christ (Matt 16:18). There is only one Christ, one faith, one baptism .. and one church. You are a Protestant because you subscribe to novel and strange doctrines started by Martin Luther, John Calvin and Ulrich Zwingli, etc. in the 16th century. These people are heretics because they adulterated and subverted the original gospel which was passed down by Christ to the Apostles and their successors. You inherited and presumed the two main tenets of Protestantism, that is, Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide.

        “I do not seek to reform the Catholic Church”

        That’s the same question that we are asking. What are you modern day Protestants still “protesting” about? Come home.

        “I do not believe that faith only saves, as James is clear that faith only cannot save, but is as dead as a corpse”

        I am glad that you saw that the original “reformers” were heretics. The Catholic Church (and the Ecumenical Council of Trent during the Catholic Reformation) defended this truth.

        “One of the Catholic Church’s biggest errors is teaching that one must believe in the Pope in order to be saved”

        This is the irony. You have this big misconception about the role of the popes in the church due to your prejudice and biased upbringing as a Protestant. You have inherited lies which are repeated over and over by careless and sinful pastors. Just to prove my point, you are precisely perpetuating an urban legend again.

        No, the Catholic Church never teaches that one must believe in the pope to be saved. We only believe that we are saved by Christ, our only Lord and Savior. The popes are the successors of Peter, the apostle whom the church was built upon and who alone was given the keys of the kingdom of heaven. There is a divine providence and God’s plan to install an organization church so that, you and I, after 2000 years of Christianity, can still confidently find and believe what’s taught by Christ through his church. The pope is a gift of God for preserving unity among Christians on earth.

        “You see, if the Scriptures are able to make you perfect and to thoroughly equip you unto all good works, and if you must believe in your Pope to be saved, then the Scriptures ought to teach you that you must believe in the Pope to be saved, but they do no such thing”

        You are right about scripture. So the Catholic Church is dead right about the heresy of the Protestant doctrine of Justification by Faith alone. May be the Catholic Church is also right about the other things too. Think about it. You wouldn’t want me to also misquote you about your beliefs, do you? Be fair.

        In Christ,

  158. surkiko, ok i will ask you a few things, you are dreaming of things mary, part in the truth,,,, worship of anyone apart from christ is bad, bad, not one bit of bible truth can be given , but praying to the dead , well thats bad, bad, you trust people instead of bible, you believe all sorts of lies, your pope says now anyone living a good life, doesnot need christ, then hell, mass, confession, why , well my sister in law, is catholic, instead of giving some bible verses, she just stop talking to me 8 years, my heart is sore for about 26 years now , when in south africa, my church had families, catholic heard the gospel, the lord opened up hearts and eyes for the truth to move in, and looking, at catholic doctrine with biblic teaching, is just made up of lies, and half-truths, get me verses mary was sin-free, romans 3:10-12, stops you, get me verses on works, salvation, why on all this you repeat say we bash catholics, please know this it happens, and its sad,but my aim for 26 years is christ and the bible, if the bible says to do it i try, not and never for my salvation, but because thats what the bible says to do,i have salvation, and because christ set me free, and died for me, it so simple, die then the cross takes effect, before the world begun my name was written down in the lambs book of life, its just wonderful, i know its hard for a catholic to leave the church, but one catholic says if your brainwashed all of your life at 20 years later some person stop you and tells your that the road your on is going the wrong way, oh, its hard to take, in, but start to ask questions, was peter ever in rome for what 25 years, where is the proof, and mary sin free going to heaven, and helping in salvation for all people , come on,,,, i will close now may christ, via holy spirit open up you eyes, ,,,GOD BLESS ALL .GEORGE57

    • Hello George,

      Why do you prefer lies instead of truth ‘cos nothing you said make any sense! You lose credibility when you simply repeat the untruths spread by irresponsible and sinful people. If you are a seeker of truth, you must be open to the Holy Spirit and investigate facts for yourself. Everything you said about the Catholic Church is not even real. It will be different if you present a challenge to Catholicism based on what she actually teaches instead of bad information and vicious gossips. It also shows that you never bother to check what the owner of this blog has shared: that, “Not 100 people in the United States hate the Roman Catholic Church, but millions hate what they mistakenly think the Roman Catholic Church is.” Unfortunately, you belong to the latter group. The good news is that there’s still hope for you. You can clear up all the misconceptions by checking facts and historical records, but only if you pray about it, cooperate with God’s grace, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead you to truth.

      Something you said captured my attention: ” … my aim for 26 years is christ and the bible, if the bible says to do it i try, not and never for my salvation, but because thats what the bible says to do.” Well, what does the bible say to do when we have issues like doctrinal differences between Christians? To check and compare verses in the bible? Care to read Matt 18:15-17? Surprise! The final arbiter is not the bible, but the church! So where’s this church authority for you today? So will you now “try” (“because that’s what the bible says to do”) to be honest and look earnestly for the true church established by Christ in Matt 16:18? By the way, there is nothing in the bible which proposes a Me-Jesus or Me-Bible religion. You have been lied to all your life.

      In Christ,

  159. Hi
    I was so glad I found your website because I have been exploring the Catholic church for some time. I have always been Protestant….raised Evengelical United Brethern which became part of the United Methodists and then a Baptist for the last 30 years. But I was always curious about the Catholic church. I know this sounds “mystical” but the pull to the Catholic Church has been there since I was a teenager but with my family being strongly Protestant since the 1600s (one of my ancestors was a co- founder of the Disciples of Christ church) I mentally pushed it out of my mind. What could I do? I lived entirely in a Baptist world.
    My first issue with the Baptists was that salavation appeared to be tied to an extraodinary degree with emotion. That is, the pastor’s job was to create in people’s minds such emotional turmoil that they would make a decision to come to Christ. This “salvation” experience lasted usually a few weeks and then the newly saved person wandered away as quickly as they convered. How can a person make such a decision by pure emotion
    Last May, my husband and I were transfered to another state and since we were both so disillusioned with the Baptists, we haven’t joined or even visited a Baptist church. Through the grace of God, I volunteered to teach English as a Second Language as part of the ministry of our local Catholic Charities and I found myself surrounded by Catholic co-teachers and students at a local Catholic church. I have been reading various works about Catholicism and I believe I am ready to begin RICA classes. I’m having a problem making that big step…..I know it’s the right thing to do because I am persuaded that the Catholic Church is the true church. but making such a huge break with my religious heritage is daunting. Any advise?

    • Hello Lisa, I’m quite sure that Pam (the owner of this site) will respond to you directly. I just want to share something which I was reading last night and has copied the link to share with another friend this morning:

      http://www.envoymagazine.com/backissues/0.1/solved.htm

      I hope the testimony therein will continue to inspire and comfort you and your husband. God bless.

    • Dear Lisa,

      Just pray. You will not be able to ever go back to Protestantism, at the point you are at now. I remember myself knowing I could NEVER be Protestant again. I had to be Catholic or nothing. But I could not be an Atheist, ever. And Agnosticism was a cowardly choice not to make a choice. So, mentally kicking and screaming I chose the Catholic Church. There was no other choice without cognitive dissonance.

      Two little stories:

      A weird/funny thing. As Easter neared along with my reception into the Catholic Church I needed to tell my parents of my decision to become Catholic. I kept putting it off. I was so scared to tell them. A Catholic friend encouraged me to just do it. I think she thought it was just really weird that I could not bring myself to tell them. But I know you will understand. They were very gracious about it, because they love me and know my heart. But my mom did say that it really grieved them. However, both my parents came to the Easter vigil.

      The day before my reception into the Catholic Church I was at the Good Friday service and everyone started going forward to kiss the cross with the body of Jesus on it. I FREAKED OUT!!!

      That’s it! I just Knew it….THERE IT IS!!!!….IDOL WORSHIP…kissing an idol of Jesus!!! I HAVE TO GET OUT OF HERE!

      But I was trapped in the middle of the pew with the RCIA director on one side. What to do? What to do?
      Then a thought….calm down. During this journey I have experienced this many times before. I would come across something that seemed to prove all the Protestant criticism to be correct. Then, I would research it. And every single time, time after time, the Catholic theology/explanation would be absolutely SUBLIME. Better and more intellectually satisfying than I could have ever thought of or hoped for.

      So, I decided to go along with the crowd and think about it later. I went up and reverently kissed the feet of Jesus on the cross. I realized in my heart that I WAS NOT worshiping a statue of Jesus but simply expressing my love for Him in a tangible/physical way. As the moments passed I realized that I LOVED KISSING HIS FEET. I could hardly wait till I could do it again.

      You have to follow Jesus no matter what.

      I have a daughter named Lisa K(athleen) :)

      • Thank you for your encouraging reply. My first thought as a read it was “How can this writer know so much about what is going on in my mind?” I was only recently coming to the understanding that I couldn’t go back to the Baptists or any other denomination because now I know too much of the truth. Of course, what I really know is that I know almost nothing about the truth and need to pursue the path I am on wherever it goes. Please pray that God grant me spiritual discernment as I go where I am being drawn (shoved? pushed? dragged?) to…..Lisa K

    • Hi Suriko,
      Thank you for the link. I read it immediately and I was astonished at how the writer’s experience was so similar to mine…..especially in how she was to led to literaly gourge on early Church writings and history. I am truely comforted knowing that others have gone through this same experience. Her point that her Protestantism was a splinter of a splinter of a splinter had come home to me early in my questioning and yet she stated so much more clearly than I could. I always thought of Protestant theology as shifting, drifting sand and that one never, ever, could know where one could safely stand. I could identify with every one of her comments, Again, thank you for taking the time to refer me to this. …Lisa K

      • Hello Lisa,

        Please keep us posted about your journey. The church always welcome converts like a loving mother. Catholics appreciate the talents and gifts which the converts bring with them to build up Christ’s church. To name one example: Steve Ray, who has published great spiritual books and videos, has a popular TV-radio ministry of apologetics, and who has led many wonderful pilgrimages to the holy land and places. Not to forget, our own Pam who is another wonderful witness of how God is using her. No more unending division and disunity in the family of God. We now all serve the one God, one Lord, one baptism and one faith as bible Christians.

        Regards,

  160. please,,, understand, no one gets salvation in church the teaching is not in the bible, if the truth is missing then heaven will be missing, why it so hard for catholics to do some background checks, your church is not telling the truth, only keeping you in slave mode, everyone knows you all pray to mary, and we have all seen your pope doing this type of worship, never can savation be earned, mary cant help, not a chance, like the rest of us ,its christ, nothing else, thats what the bible, says, your all false teaching church, , get born again, let christ show you the way, get on to richard bennett website,,,www.bereanbeacon.org/ he knows what your problems are, 21 years as a priest, come now, surly after 21 years , then the lord told him to come out, this false church, , i repeat, 21 years its hard to call him a liar, or a nutter, titus 3:5, ,salvation is free, now that christ has done what was required of him by GOD, if anyone believes the true bible, and stays with it, you will be set free, add to it then expect bondage, in a false system, and hell at the end, see, galatians, 5:1-13 and i call on you all to answer, as follows,,, matt 23:9 1tim 4:1 1tim 4:3 , please explain, how your first pope was married mark 1:30 +matt 8:14 +luke4:38 , please move away from your mans traditions, free yourselfs to the bible, get in a good bible church, save yourselfs and your kids, ok relax i will finish now, i do all this out love, everytime someone points a catholic in truth towards what the bible says, you call him names, but let it come.my lord is giving me lots of help, at all times, may my lord open up your hearts and eyes, god bless .

    • Hello George,

      Thank you for sharing. I knew about ex-priest Richard Bennett and his website. In any case, I read his testimony again since you mentioned him. Interesting guy but one who obviously lacked good priestly formation or possessed discernment as a gift of the Spirit. I wonder if it would have had made any difference if he had stuck with his theological degree studies instead of quitting with just an ordinary academic level at Angelicum University. I’m sorry, George. For each ex-priest R. Bennett, there are many more prominent ex-Protestant pastors or professors who saw the Catholic Church as the faithful bride of Christ. … like Scott Hahn or the president of the Evangelical Society, Francis Beckwith.

      Again, I still wonder why Protestants or ex-Catholics spent so much time bashing the Church. Instead of trying to re-convert Catholics, why don’t they go to a mission field and convert non-Christians or pagans for a change?

      So what’s your point about Apostle Peter being married? It’s the same like saying Paul was not married. Celibacy is a discipline of the Latin branch of the Catholic Church. Do you object to someone who wishes to dedicate his or her whole life to the service of Christ?

      What about Matt 23:9 (Call no man father)? If you’re a family man with kids, do you forbid your children to call you father? Further along in Matt 23, it is also said to also not call anyone “teacher”, “master” or “instructor”. Do you tell your children to dishonor their teachers at school? All this is called hyperbole, a common biblical language in which exaggeration is used for emphasis or effect (like the entreat to cut off your limb if it sins). For instance, you also call your minister “pastor” or shepherd, and yet Christ is your only shepherd.

      Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/hyperbole#ixzz19wbKNqyX

      http://www.catholic.com/library/Call_No_Man_Father.asp

      Regards,

  161. Dear George,
    The Catholic Church DOES have the Truth. Please see my response here–>Why Don’t you Leave the Catholic Church?

  162. Hi Surkiko,
    I’ve signed up for my local church’s RCIA class and my first class is tonight. I’m so glad I got up the courage to make the call. I don’t know if I will end up making the full committment but I have such a great peace about it that I know I am following the lead of the Holy Spirit.
    A quick aside about calling the RCIA advisor– I had been given the advisor’s card by a fellow teacher and when I looked for it a while ago, I couldn’t find it. I completely took apart my purse and wallet looking for it and finally gave up. Yesterday at the supermarket while waiting at the check out, I noticed a white card on the floor directly at my feet. I picked it up and it was my RCIA card. I felt like I had just had a confirmation that my search is in the right direction.
    Thank you again for your encouragement and I will keep you informed…..Lisa K

    • Wow! that is pretty providential…Also, you might not be ready for this yet but when you lose things pray to St. Anthony,

      St. Anthony, St. Anthony look around; something’s lost and can’t be found.

      I ALWAYS find what I’ve lost after this prayer…even a friend’s chihuahua I was dog sitting, that ran away at dusk and could not be found by 11:00 when we finally gave up. We live in coyote country and regularly hear them at night around the house. So we thought he was a goner. I thought the prayer had failed but first thing in the morning I went out the front door and there he was!!!

      I hope this doesn’t bother you. Believe me, I am not at all superstitious, nor do I light say “That was a miracle”. But it took me a while before I was comfortable asking a Saint to pray for me. When you are ready….

      • Gee, I don’t know about Saints yet….that’s advanced stuff for me….just one of the numberless things I don’t know anything about or have wrong information about. But I appreciate the prayer and I will try to remember to use it the next time I lose something (which happens more often than I’d like now adays) Do saints, btw, even consider the prayers of non Catholics?

    • What a marvelous story to share about finding the RCIA advisor’s card again. Don’t forget that myself, Pam and a host of friends are cheering for you from here. Do you mind telling us which parish is it? If you can, try asking around for a good spiritual director. He or she will be able to instruct and direct you in a more personal way. I will remember you in my prayers.

      • I think that the saints only see the pure heart of all people irrespective of their religion or creed. It’s a good question to ask at RCIA tonight ! … :))

      • Hello all,
        My RCIA class last night was great! So many people from all backgrounds…..I asked a lot of questions and I know I will continue. My advisor really helped me become oriented and he paired me with a lady from a very similar fundamentalist background. The parish is St Patricks in Col Springs, Co. I covet your prayers and your support . Some of what I am learning is so different to my experience that I need time to wrap my mind around it. But it is wonderful to have a safe place to ask questions and discuss spiritual matters. Thanks so much for your encouragement…….Lisa

      • Hello Lisa,

        Glad to know that the first meeting went well. It will take some time to get re-aquainted with the “original” pair of glasses. In time, you will find out that the “mother church” is truly wise, in fact much wiser than you and me, because she is guided by the Holy Spirit.

        In Christ,

  163. surkiko, hi, why is it you cannot answer my verses, you are just talk, you believe a false church order, invent teaching, that a blind man would cry over, make up lies on peter, mary, make whole set of teaching, on a church thats free of mistakes, when i ask you to debate your truth, and thinking, you fod,,,, me off, like most of other catholics, its not what you have done in bible work, as most times is tradition,please,,, my heart breaks ,,on any teaching that far from the bible,,,,is bound to fail, one day my lord is going to end this world, and adding and twisting gods word to make up doctrine is bad, salvation, by works, no no , christ, christ, oh, if your church does not change, how come lots of your popes were dissatisfaction apon themselfs, , but if you ask questions, they kick you out of the church, my surkiko, answer my questions, and verses, is your church christian, does it cover -up bad, priests, we have also bad pastors, surkiko, tell me the picture of pope paul, and others at statues and Icons of mary, was not worship, or pope paul, did not had over the church in marys protection,surkiko, you sir are soon going to cut me off , and run away from the truth, it hurts, i know, i was in a k, copland type church, for 6 years, and it was reading and studying the bible, and prayer to christ, that set me free, you are in a church, thats giving out lies, and half-truths, most is man made traditions, apart from that, how is your family, may god shine his love on them, george.

    • Hello George,

      I can assure you that I’m not ignoring you or “soon going to cut (you) off, and run away from the truth.” I simply want to respect the owner of this blog and other readers by suggesting that we take our conversation to a private domain like e-mails.

      I think that it’s important to first know where we came from. I’m not a cradle Catholic but Catholic Christianity has been my only and life-long spiritual home. I fellowship frequently with other Christians from different faith traditions, but will not hesitate to defend and explain my faith when challenged (with respect and charity, of course).

      What is a k-Copeland type church? Who was the founder and when was it founded ? Did you come from a different faith tradition (like Catholic, Methodist, Pentecostal, etc.) before joining the present church?

      Onward to the questions part. For better management, may I suggest that you restrict yourself to one topic at a time? I hear you asking first if my church is “Christian”? Yes, it is Christian alright. In fact, Jesus Christ is the only reason for her existence. The Catholic Church traces herself to Jesus as founder when he prophesied: Thou art Peter (Rock) and upon this rock I will build my church” (Matt 1:18). The Catholic Church traces a succession of Popes to Peter who was given the keys of the kingdom of heaven (v 19). The Catholic Church is the original bible church in the New Testament. In fact, she is the one and only church of Christ which is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism” (Eph 4:5).

      Regards,

  164. hi mr Joseph Duran,hope you are well, I miss your posts, anyway, you know Mary is a big thing here, and Mary was special , but in my bible, Romans 3:10-12 says there is none righteous, no not one, how is it possible for Mary to be without sin, is my bible wrong, meaning the verse here is meaning something else ,or the pope got it wrong, let me know your thinking on this, have a nice day. George.

    • Hi George,
      I know I’m new around here but as a lover of Bible study, I’m hoping you will forgive a bit of amateur analysis. I took your reference to Romans 3:10 and ran with it. First, I noticed that Paul was directly quoting Psalms 14-3. All my bible references used quotation marks denoting that this is quoted scripture, not Paul’s own words. Per my KJ this reads “They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no not one.” So we know from this being a quotation that Paul was referencing David’s words as a comment or a judgement on his own time. Here’s where context comes into play. Paul wrote this letter to the Romans somewhere around 56-58 AD. There is a general agreement in both Protestant and Catholic thought that Mary was somewhere around 14 to 18 years old at the time of Jesus’s birth which would make her around 49 or 50 at the time of the Cruxifiction in 33 AD. No one knows precisely when Mary died, (or assumed directly to heaven depending on one’s point of view) but it would certainly not be much longer than 20 years after the Cruxifiction. The average life span of a woman did not much exceed 60 in those days so the odds of Mary still being alive in 56-58 AD are pretty slim. Since Paul was directly quoting scripture written prior to Mary’s birth and speaking to a time after Mary’s death (assumption), I really don’t see any conflict. Rightous Mary was with Christ in heaven (I don’t think that there is any dispute that Mary is in heaven) so Paul was perfectly correct in quoting scripture in the same present tense used by David. Now, of course, this analysis, like a lot of Protestant theology is entirely based on my own logic and assumptions. You may draw completely different conclustions. That’s part of the general uncertainty inherent in Protestantism…it’s my opinion or yours or some other guy’s…. take your pick…….Lisa K

      • hi, lisa, (assumption, a big thing in catholic teaching if is not in bible, then we just make up doctrine to fit our church leadership, have you ever studied your church teaching, lisa, if mary was born without sin, ok, this would mean marys mother had to be born without sin, so it gets hard in regards to why christ came, if you get Original Sin, from adam, ok ,now your catechism, 969 ,,, states ” taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation,,therefor the blessed virgin is invoked in the church under the titles of advocate, helper, ,,benfactress, and mediatrix,,,lisa, pope paul handed the church over to mary, first peter was the top man, first pope ,etc, now pope paul, says in st peters chair ,,mary is the beginning of the better world”, now the problem lisa, in your bible studys,you are trying to find truth, ok , where is christ in this story, is christ who as bible says, he did that you and i can have salvation, now when christ left to go on holiday, pope paul lets mary have his seat, in the trinity, this should concern every catholic in the world, making up doctrine, adding to gods word, getting foolish blind people to risk your whole life of worship, in lies and half-truths, twisted words from the popes story book , and you all fall over and believe him, no words or texts in holy scriptures to support,nothing,,, mary is now our mediator in heaven, please lisa, 1tim 2:5-6, this is truth, christ ,christ,, only when you see false teaching, and lies, lisa that dont match up to bible take yourself out of this false order, if you have kids , leave, we all get somethings wrong, bit saying and replacing christ , is big time lies, check out,john 14:6, jesus says, i am the way ,the truth and the life, no man comes unto the father but by me, also, acts 4:12 , what about chist work lisa on the cross, christ died a death for to free us from sin, yet you take his glory, and put it in the bin, then add, add, oh christ was short in what he did, you call him a liar, put mary, works, mass, baptism, veneration of images, your churh is false, and is taking most of you to hell, is a pagan tradition, full of false leaders, please do study, but is salvation by grace or not, yet if you dont decare that works, mary , +the rest of false doctrines made up to keep you in bondage, we are born in sin, christ went to the cross as a ransom for you, and all who believe, your pope calls christ a liar, and we need to do, more and more,is it any wonder that to cover up their guilt, in exodus 20:4-5, the second commandment is removed from your catechisms, and bible why,my heart is sore that most of your teaching, is never backed up with doctrine, read revelation 18:4-5, also well, even when in matthew 6:7, when this rosary was given, what an insult to god, mary, mary, mary, such foolishness, is sad, never does god instructs us to recite, this stuff, oh no he condemns it ,,,roms 3:4,,,this is blashemy, big time, and its not go unanswered, by god. may god open up your eyes and heart. lisa.

        • George,
          Do you realize that Martin Luther did actually make up the doctrine of Sola Scriptura. This is nowhere in the Bible. He made it up and then removed seven books from the Old Testament and seven from the New Testament because these book contradicted his theology.

          And contrary to your conundrum regarding the immaculate conception of Mary, we believe that she was conceived without sin by the power of God. So, it was NOT necessary for her mother etc. to also be without sin. Mary was conceived without a sin nature just like Adam and Eve. Fully human as God meant them all to be. The rest of your points are all the usual anti-Catholic misconceptions which I have answered elsewhere. If Lisa has any questions about these points I encourage her to ask and I will find her the answers.

      • This is awesome, Lisa. Thanks for sharing. I’m learning a lot here.

  165. The latest episode of Journey Home. Most inspiring story of husband and wife pastoral team from Four Square pentecostalism:

    • Thanks for posting this. I didn’t know The Journey Home was on Youtube. Awesome. I was on the show 6 years ago but my episode isn’t on youtube. :(

    • For those who are interested, I believe the “sister of a prominent anti-Catholic apologist” referenced in the video is Patty Bonds, the sister of James White. You are listen to Patty’s testimony in mp3 here:

      [audio src="http://ewtn.edgeboss.net/download/ewtn/audiolibrary/jh_021102.mp3" /]

  166. Jesus Wasn’t Catholic Or Roman or Greek , He was Jewish why dont we study the Hebrew Scriptrues instead of the Roman Theology.

    He is in error on The Reformed .The Pentecostal movement is movement not a church, it is not reformed of the reformed only 3 groups are reformed Presbyters, Lutherans, Anglicans ( ) Four Squares are inter-deformational they do not confess the Trinity or Oneness Doctrine. There is a Dualism. No wonder looking at real Theology even if Catholicism, that they would convert. There is no real Scholarly Theology in Pentecostal movement there are no major Scholars in The Pentecostalism.

  167. If this man would Have come out Like this 1500 years ago. He would have been put to death by the Roman Catholic Church. I hope He knows that

    • It is simply amazing that you can be so out of touch of reality and history. Here another conversion from Pentecostalism to Catholicism:

    • “Jesus Wasn’t Catholic Or Roman or Greek , He was Jewish why dont we study the Hebrew Scriptrues instead of the Roman Theology.”

      If this is so, then most Protestants will be lost forever since few will understand Hebrew and will not be saved by the bad theology of Bible Alone. In any case, the NT was actually written in Greek and Jesus and the Alexandrian Jews used the Greek Septuagint most the time if not exclusively, so the presumption of “Hebrew Scriptures” is off the mark completely. What’s the point of the argument anyway? Did you find a verse in the KJV which suggest reading it in Hebrew ONLY?

      Your remark about a Pentecostal being put to death is a big blank without proper reference. It is a very irresponsible statement to make. As far as classic- or neo-Pentecostalism is concerned, it is part of the mess of Protestantism so I am not going to address your comment on it. I’m not here to defend Pentecostalism or Protestantism. I will also just let the videos speak for themselves. Hope they will be a source of grace for you and other readers here.

      • I never said the Pentecostalis were put to Death. That would be Impossiable for Pentacrazyism didnt start till around the 1900s , I was Infferring that any back in Luthers day ,People would have been exacuted for beliving somthing else , Than the Catholic Church even if they recatted thier views. The Reformation didnt begen with Luther thats just a frame of refferance. Reformations have gone on in the Catholic church for a 1000 or more Years Over 500 years before Luther, But Usally it was one person. What was different about Luther Day thier were many involed , even though Luther gets the credit. Plus Luther had support from the Authority the 9 Princes

  168. whats funny is that most or all of these people talk about a conversion experaince outside the Catholic church, Yes they have converted religions but thier Salvation in a life with Chirst occurred years before in a Protestant tradition.
    My quesstionis our thier experiances of salvation real? or Occording to the Roman Catholic Church Salvation can only occurr in the Roman Catholic Church, if true then they never had salvation and only a religious experaince?

  169. I will MAKE ONE POINT and ONE ONLY
    It wasnt the Roman catholic Church to why we have a English Bible. and if Catholics say it was Catholics thier LYING.

    • St. Caedmon, a monk of Whitby, translated by paraphrasing great portions of it into Anglo-Saxon around 670 A.D. There were others – BIshop Aldhelm (cir. 700), Venerable Bede (cir. 700), Bishop Eadhelm of Sherborne, Hermit Guthlac of Peterborough, Bishop Eghert of Holy Island, Archbishop Aelfric of Canterbury and even the Catholic King Alfred the Great (9th century). After the Norman conquest, the next wave of translation were in Anglo-Norman or Middle English: Orm (1150), Salus Animate (1250), William Shoreham and Richard Rolle, Hermit of Hampole (1349). St. Thomas More under Henry VIII would say: “The whole Bible long before Wycliff’s day was by virtuous and well-learned men translated into English tongue, and by good and godly people with devotion and soberness well and reverently read” (Dialogues III). The Douay-Rheims was completed in 1609; its NT was published in 1582, pre-dating the KJV by almost 30 years. It is commonly acknowledged that the translators of KJV adopted the Douay-Rheim extensively.

      The first Christians were Catholics. The Catholic Christians wrote the various books of the bible. The books were gathered together at the Council of Rome (382) convened under Pope Damascus. The Council of Hippo (393) and Carthage (397), and the ecumenical council of Florence (1438) reaffirmed the canon issued by the Council of Rome. The bible was translated into the vernacular Latin (Vulgate) in A.D. 405 by St. Jerome, a Catholic. Before the advent of the printing press, Catholic monks and priests laboriously copied the bible by hand to preserve and pass down the written word of God. The bible and gospels were translated into multiple languages (Spanish, Italian, Danish, French, Norwegian, Polish, Bohemian, Hungarian, etc.) when the Catholic missionaries brought Christianity to various regions.

      Without the Catholic Church, there would be no bible and there would not be an English translation of the bible. The bible is the family book of the Catholic Church.

  170. Hello Robomon42,

    Conversion is not a one-moment-in-time OSAS experience only. That idea is not biblical, a novelty and a very recent American invention. Conversion is a daily process until you finish your “race” in this life on earth. Christians are expected to continue to grow and be transformed by the Holy Spirit by living a life of holiness pleasing to God. On this journey, they listen to the probing of the Holy Spirit and discover the fullness of the truth as intended in God’s original design. They are led to convert to Catholicism in obedience and because the church instituted by Christ is the straight and narrow gate to heaven. The Catholic Church never taught that you can only have salvation in the church. However, without the spiritual guidance of the Church, you risk making bad moral and unfaithful choices on “the highway to hell which is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way.” You certainly don’t want to utter irresponsible, careless and impious blasphemy against Christ and His church without checking the reliability of your data and sources of all the misinformation. Eternity is at risk here so I suggest taking some time out for some serious study of the bible, church documents and history … all very accessible in this modern age of the internet and printing press.

    Regards,

  171. You didnt answer Question about the English translation of the Bible?

  172. surkiko:”The Catholic Church never taught that you can only have salvation in the church. ”

    You are wrong
    “The Second Vatican Council’s Decree on Ecumenism explains: ‘For it is through Christ’s Catholic Church alone, which is the universal help toward salvation, that the fullness of the means of salvation can be obtained.'” Pg. 215, #816
    “…all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body: Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation…” Pg. 224, #846

  173. (extra ecclesiam nulla salus)?

    “Outside the Church there is no salvation”

    • In fact, this teaching is a dogma in the Catholic Church. However, I cannot expect you, a Protestant so far removed from authentic Christianity, to understand how Christ’s church understands it. In the 1940’s, a Catholic priest, Fr. Leonard Feeney, was even ex-communicated when he persisted to teach it to mean that only Catholics could be saved (Happily, he was reconciled to the church before he died in 1978). In connecting with Fr. Feeney’s error, the Supreme Congregation of the Holy Office issued “Suprema Haec Sacra” which confirmed the dogma but caution that it must be understood in the sense in which the Church itself understands it.

      Here is how:
      Jesus Christ is “the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but by (him) (1 Tim 2:4). Similarly, “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). When Saul was prosecuting the church, Jesus said: “Why do you persecute ME?” (Acts 9:4) and “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting” (Acts 9:5). There is only one Christ and one church of Christ, and they are indivisible and closely identified by each other. Salvation is Christ, and all graces of salvation flow through Christ’s church. That is, whether you have formal membership with the Catholic Church, one is related to Christ and to his body, the Church. So let everyone says Amen!

      Again, please don’t quote something out of context. Here’s what Vatican II said: “Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the gospel of Christ, or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their consciences – those too MAY achieve eternal salvation” (LG 16).

      Notice the “MAY” above. Well, it is no small matter when a believer steadfastly rejects the Catholic Church with full knowledge and consent. The believer (or any non-Catholic) put his or her soul in danger – because of pride, disobedience and deliberate rebellion against God. Thus truly “extra ecclesiam nulla salus.”

    • There is no salvation outside the Church means nothing more sinister than :

      THERE IS NO SALVATION OUTSIDE OF CHRIST.

      The Church is the Body of Christ. Jesus is the Head of Body. Note:

      It doesn’t say, There is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church.

      And this is for the very reason that the Catholic Church absolutely

      DOES

      ……..NOT

      …………..TEACH

      that only Catholics can be saved.

      • Then Explain “extra ecclesiam nulla salus”

        • All who are saved are saved through Christ and His Church. His Church is the Catholic Church that he built upon Peter. But you do not have to be explicitly Catholic in order to be saved through Christ and His Church.

      • Protestants are hopelessly confused about the oneness of Christ and his Church. READ the maxim verbatim and then again in context as explained in the document “Suprema Haec Sacra”. Sometimes, I feel like it’s pointless to try to explain anything to those who “with ears but don’t hear, and with eyes but don’t see”. Most Protestants cannot even see the manipulation (“adding to”) of the plain meaning of the bible when Martin Luther deliberately inserted ALONE in Rom 3:28 to suit his heretical doctrine of Sola Fide: “So halten wir nun dafur, da_ der Mensch gerecht wird ohne des Gesetzes Werke, allein durch den Glauben.” ALLEIN is “alone” in German.

  174. I think all these Videos just proff how reformed the Catholic Church is getting , English speaking Bibles , Lay People teaching that was ment for Priest and Bishops Only, Women being alound to speak Openly , All of This in My Life time. Srue doesnt look like the Roman catholic church back in Luthers day.
    O ya that all Luther wanted was to of Deabte about certian Doctrines But when the church threated his life and threated the Princes of Germa . O ya Luther had the Authority to Interate Scriptrue , He was appointed by the office of the Papas , with all Extent powers of a Theoalogian. This is in The Majisterism also , Obvessly you have never read it. Im a Presbyterian and I have read it.
    You got to remember, Calvin, Knox and Luther and others , were all Catholic Priest , this wasnt some outside group of people. Most Catholics act like the Reformers were some sort of wacked ouside group that didnt have a clue of what they were talking about , Acually these men were propbley more infored than the pope imself about scriptrue and knowlege of the Roman Catholic tradition. So get the facts stairt your history is a shared history with reformers.

  175. lisa k, hi, OK, please, help me, Romans 3:10-12 , no one is righteous, what does this verse mean to you, and if my bible says in acts 4:12, Christ is the only way,then i read lost souls going up and kissing the feet of Christ, we would all like the day when we kiss the feet of Christ, oh yes that will be some party, my problem is Jesus, is seated at the right-hand of god, so Lisa, its scary to think you can disregard all true teaching in the bible, and claim to be Christian, Romans 3:4 , sure experience is good,and wonderful , but if you remove gods bible+ true teaching, and trust lies, and half-truths mixed up with shabby works program on trying to earn your salvation, self-righteousness, is what Paul talks about in Philippines, 3:1-14, don’t, trust in anything but Christ ,,,,,,, ,the flesh, the works, Mary, traditions , just Christ,and not all Christians, are out to bash Catholics, no, some of us are hurting, to see lots and lots of lost souls following a false system, heading hell, most catholic s live in fear, no matter how your love is stated for the mother church, if you move away from what they, your leaders tell you they kick you out, in the old days one would have put to death, Christ, bible, Christ bible, , the thief on the cross who, did ” what baptism, go to Mary, works, follow the pope around, no, nothing, only what every believer reads in the bible, comes to Christ, and believes, repents, ,,,followed up with baptism, bells should be ringing when words from your pope states , if one lives a good honest life as best they can , salvation may be given, who teaching does this come from, not my bible, may my savour and Mary’s savour open up his love to all. god bless.

  176. Roboman42,,,,,bang on, great stuff don’t expect anyone on this site to answer verses, from the bible, oh, no way, its gets hard to defend a teaching, that’s full of bad truths from passed leaders that born again means nothing, regeneration, and other truths in the bible, are just not important , only staying in fear of false leaders, who kick out people when truth knocks the door, acts 4:12, its impossible to answer in the catholic church, why,,, when an church says by dogmas its speaking for god, then teaches far from what god teaches, holy days, forbidden to marry, adding Mary help in salvation, well, then its open to all false teaching, Matthew 6:7,,, why do we think that’s there, not for fun,,,its to stop foolish lost people going down to hell, and on Romans 3:10-12, no one is free from sin , we are born sinners, yet Mary was without sin,, try to get anyone catholic to answer this verse from the bible, they come up with a half-baked set of teaching, by some group outside, god bible, god bless.

    • George,
      I would be happy to respond to verses in the Bible that contradict what the Catholic Church teaches. But, my response may contradict your INTERPRETATION of the verses. That is very different than what you are very uncharitably asserting. That is mostly what I do on the blog is respond to Protestant use of scripture. So I invite you to read the posts that correspond to your questions about the Catholic Church. Bring the verses on.

  177. answer me this, how is Mary who was a holy God fearing woman still a virgin when she had at least 6 children after Jesus. Jesus is the only begotten son of God so any child born to Mary after Jesus was born and concieved the natural way which eliminates Marys virginity.

    • Jason,
      Mary is ever Virgin because she did not have any other children. Jesus is her only child, her only son. The “brothers and sisters of Jesus” were either step (children of Joseph by a previous marriage) or kinsmen of Jesus and Mary.

      Mary had vowed herself to virginity that is why she asks the angel how can I have a baby? People back then knew where babies had come from and if her marriage to Joseph was going to be a regular marriage she never would have asked this question.

      This is more fully explained in other posts. Please click and read the posts below.

      Who Were the Brothers & Sisters of Jesus?

      Luther on the Perpetual Virginity of Mary

  178. bfhu: “Mary was conceived without a sin nature just like Adam and Eve. Fully human as God meant them all to be.”

    Theirs no evidance in Scriptrue or even ouside of scriptrue for this , you cant even make the assumtion of this in scriptrue.
    The OT verse of this in Hebrew saids “a Young Girl will concive not a Virgin” But Catholics belive the the Hebrew transcripts are corrupted and therefore have no Authority. According to Pual The Jews were in trusted with the Oracals of God in Romans. Wich means right from Scriptrue Jews have the Authority over the Tanak or OT. So if we take Isaiah passage about a sign the orginal hebrew saids a “young girl” will concive a child.

    • And for those who Dont know the passage
      Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign: behold, the young woman shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
      (JPS)
      Im not saying that Mary wasnt a virgin Im saying the Catholic interprataion of Marys Natrue.

      Authority over Scriptrue
      Rom 3:2 Much in every way. To begin with, the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God.

    • But there is no scripture that says all things to be believed must be found in scripture.

  179. hi, bfhu, its so sad, you all take false orders that can not be backed up, with the bible, and at the end of the day, if you screw-up and sin big time, your salvation on false teaching is never never sure, you can never even say heaven, oh no your not yet clean for, heaven, well i am going to heaven, why because christ died on the cross, and thats it ,,, i go in street , on buses, planes, in my work, i just talk and tell the gospel, on what christ has done, when i die , its to heaven, and nothing else, i repeat you insult christ big-time, when even after all your works, and stealing, gods glory, you even expect him or mary or dead people to help, oh you one blind church, SACERDOTAL MASS, PRAYERS FOR THE DEAD, SIGN OF THE CROSS, WAX CANDLES, VENERATION OF ANGELS AND DEAD SAINTS, DAILY MASS, EXULTATION OF MARY AS “MOTHER OF GOD”, PRIESTS WEARING SPECIAL CLOTHING, PURGATORY, LATIN LANGUAGE USED IN WORSHIP, PRAYER OFFERED TO MARY, DEAD SAINTS, AND ANGELS, THE OFFICE OF POPE, KISSING OF THE POPE’S FEET, KISSING OF THE POPE’S RING, TEMPORAL POWER OF POPE’S, POPE = “GOD ON EARTH”, PONTIFEX MAXIMUS, POPE HOLDS KEYS TO HEAVEN AND EARTH, POPE CARRIED ON PORTABLE THRONE, VENERATION OF CROSSES, STATUES, IMAGES, AND RELICS, “HOLY WATER” OF WATER, SALT, CHRISM, AND PRIEST BLESSING, BAPTISM OF BELLS, INFANT BAPTISM, CANONIZATION OF DEAD SAINTS, FASTING OF FRIDAYS DURING LENT, CELEBRATION OF EASTER, CELEBRATION OF GOOD FRIDAY, CELEBRATION OF CHRISTMAS
    DAILY “SCARIFICE” OF THE MASS, THE ROSARY, THE INQUISITION INSTITUTED BY THE COUNCIL OF VERONA IN 1184AD, SALE OF INDULGENCES, SEVEN SACRAMENTS, TRANSUBSTANTIATION, AURICULAR CONFESION (CONFESSING TO A PRIEST), ADORATION OF A WAFER (COMMUNION), THE SCAPULAR, THE BIBLE FORBIDDEN TO LAYMEN IN 1129AD BY COUNCIL OF VALENCIA, TRADITION PLACED ON SAME GROUND AS SCRIPTURE, THE APOCRYPHA, “IMMACULATE” CONCEPTION OF MARY (WITHOUT SIN), INFALLIBILTY OF POPE IN MATTERS OF FAITH, ASSUMPTION OF MARY, MARY AS QUEEN OF HEAVEN, MARY AS CO-REDEEMER, MARY AS MOTHER OF THE CHURCH IMAGE WORSHIP INSTITUTED BY COUNCIL OF NICEA IN 787AD, TORTURE AND KILLING OF OVER 100 MILLION CHRISTIANS, THE PERPETUAL “VIRGINITY” OF MARY, POPE JOHN PAUL STATES “EVOLUTION = FACT”, CHURCH SANCTIONED BINGO AND GAMBLING, LOYALTY TO CHURCH NECESSARY FOR SALVATION, CHANGE OF SUNDAY AS SABBATH INSTEAD OF SATURDAY, CHURCH AND STATES COMBINED, ENFORCEMENT OF CHURCH DOCTRINES UPON GENERAL PUBLIC, THE NATIVITY OF JESUS DECEMBER 25TH, THE NATIVITY OF ST. JOHN JUNE 24TH, HOT CROSS BUNS, 40 DAYS OF LENT, DEAD VISITING LIVING ON ALL SOULS DAY, BURNING INCENSE, CHANTS, THE CRUCIFIX, WEARING OF RELIGIOUS IMAGES, MYSTICISM, PENANCE, INDULGENCES, AND SALVATION BY WORKS, NUNS, CONVENTS, after this that most of it outside doctrine, i fear most of this church will end up in hell, and yet all thats asked of you ,,,like the thief on the cross, who repented, and asked christ, what,,, the above works program,,,, no no all he says take me with you lord, yes no ,and like all true christian who only trust in what christ does , not self-rightous works, in what we do its what christ done, on the cross, wake -up , stop insulting the finished work of christ. god bless,

  180. Sola scriptura (Latin ablative, “by scripture alone”) is the doctrine that the Bible contains all knowledge necessary for salvation and holiness.

    In other words , nothing needs to be added for Salvation The Bible contains all the information. The Catholic view how ever has added on to the meaning and by what process Salvation accurs.

    This Dotrine Sola scriptura is just that a Doctrine (a teaching) a guied line not a Dogma in Protestant Reformation

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    BFHU: But this teaching cannot be found in the Bible.

    • A new Protestant denomination is born today, founded by Roboman42 and called the First Progressive Evangelical Independent Presbyterian Church in America !

      • That sounds like more of a personal Attack, I havent on this site Attacked any one personaly , Ive only attacked and debated Catholic Doctrines and Dogma. Your Statement above really shows the evil in your heart. I will pray for you my friend , may His Grace be upon you , and may the Kingdom of Heaven brust in you.

      • Or alternatively:

        The First Progressive Evangelical Independent Hebrew Presbyterian Bible Church in America.

      • Not a personal attack but just an illustration of the insanity of Protestantism. Sorry if you can’t take a joke. My apology.

  181. Now you’re just playing in the sand box like a 2 year. Look me up when you want to have Intellectual and reasonable debate. Which seems this site is not capable of or has lack of knowledge of their own church.

  182. surkiko:”The First Progressive Evangelical Independent Hebrew Presbyterian …”
    Thats an anti-semitic statment.

  183. And I will suggest that you stop re-writing the history of Protestantism and giving it a new definition at every whim. There are literally thousands of Protestant churches with diagonally opposite views on everything … and you have just added your own brand to it. How can you carry a reasonable debate if you are on quick sand all the time?

    • Wasnt the reformation started in the Catholic Church?
      How can you have a denial of your own History?

      • I’m talking about the history of Protestantism. You are changing and redefining one of the basic tenets of the Protestant Reformation. The original “reformers” would have (to use your words) “put (you) to death” for holding such a view of Sola Scriptura which is suspiciously papist !

  184. It is well known of Catholics there anti-semitism towards Jews, Its even in the “Magisterium”, but because of the lack of knowlege of catholics and their own church its now wonder.

  185. “He was Jewish why dont we study the Hebrew Scriptrues”

    I’m simply giving you credit for you love of Hebrew.

  186. I dont know you, but I have a feeling your patronizing me.

    • I will say this … that you are at least more reasonable than someone else here who is just ranting. Peace.

  187. surkiko:”I’m talking about the history of Protestantism. You are changing and redefining one of the basic tenets of the Protestant Reformation. The original “reformers” would have (to use your words) “put (you) to death” for holding such a view of Sola Scriptura which is suspiciously papist !”

    Sola Scriptura fails if you do not have access to or own a personal copy of the Bible. thats why the Catholic Chruch has always viewed it herrectal. They were trying to keep Bibles out of the hands of common men to keep control of the Mass.
    If common people only knew what was in the Bible , it would change the world! And it did forever.

    The Reformation wasnt realy about starting a new Church it was getting the common man to have understanding of Holy Scriptrues and with God . Which wasnt happing. Even in Isreal Jews were aloud to read from the Torha in public with the guidance of priest and Rabbis , the common could read and hear the Tora on any given shabbat. Torha in Hebrew means ” Instruction ”
    In the Book of Nehmiha when Ezra read the Torha and told the stories of Moses and the wilderness , they were in AWE and wonder.

    Most Catholics were submissioned by fear of death of the Church not by LOVE

    The Roman Catholics had thier own teachings and most werent found in the Bible and their not.
    And if the Tradition is held in higher standards than the text , Sola Scripta is herectical.
    Thats the point Reformers viewed the Scriptrues Gods own words to have a higher Authority than even the Pope. Because the Pope is Human just like rest of us.
    You Cant make a new Dogma (Law in Greek) with out God , The Catholic Church makes new Decrees all the time , Did they come from God?
    Nebekenzer thought he was higher than the All Mighty. And made Decrees without God , Just like Nebakenezer , The Catholic Chruch is like a wild animal , esp. aginst childern.
    Most Catholics were submissioned by fear of death of the Church not by LOVE

    • “Sola Scriptura fails if you do not have access to or own a personal copy of the Bible.”

      If you read the history of MANKIND, you’d know that the bible as we know it didn’t exist for the first 300 years of Christianity. And yes, personal copies of bible were not readily available to the common people before the advent of the printing press because it was a very slow and laborious process of coping it by hand. The first book printed was the Mazarin or Gutenberg Bible, a Catholic production. It was printed 60 years before the Reformation began.

      And yes again, Sola Scriptura would fail given the above timeline. So what? No Christians believe in Sola Scriptura because it was a new invention by Martin Luther 1500 years after the beginning of Christianity. How did the church survive? Through apostolic teaching and preaching and the handling down of traditions by the church. Protestants only see the word of God as the printed bible. Catholic Christians see the word of God as the living person of Christ (the Logos) and the preaching and teaching of oral and written traditions by His living church through the ages.

      “Catholic Chruch has always viewed it herrectal. They were trying to keep Bibles out of the hands of common men to keep control of the Mass.”

      Since when? The mass is full of scriptures (but of course, you wouldn’t know that).

      “If common people only knew what was in the Bible , it would change the world! And it did forever.”

      The serpent quotes the bible too. Even Shakespeare would say: “In religion, what damned error, but some sober brow will bless it and approve it with a text (William Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice, Act III, Sc II, lines 77-79)

      And yes, it did change the world forever alright. Martin Luther himself would deplore how every “milkmaid and farmhand” now thought they could interpret scripture correctly: “Who, but the devil, has granted such license of wresting the words of the holy Scripture? Who ever read in the Scriptures, that my body is the same as the sign of my body? or, that is the same as it signifies?” (Luther’s Collected Works, Wittenburg Edition, no. 7, p, 391).

      “The Reformation wasnt realy about starting a new Church it was getting the common man to have understanding of Holy Scriptrues and with God . Which wasnt happing. Even in Isreal Jews were aloud to read from the Torha in public with the …”

      Reformation was about renewing the church because some Christians in some faction of the church were not living faithfully to the words of God. Martin Luther was zealous but let the world got the better of him instead. During the medieval decline and spiritual corruption, St. Francis of Assisi also had to call for conversion and renewal in the church. But unlike Martin Luther, he understood that genuine reform came from within and by staying in oneness with the Church, without rippng the body of Christ apart by strife, schism and disobedience. Herein lies the contrast between Martin Luther and St. Francis of Assisi. a genuine reformer of the church.

      “Most Catholics were submissioned by fear of death of the Church not by LOVE”

      Someone on the outside will not understand it. Don’t patronize the Catholics.

      “The Roman Catholics had thier own teachings and most werent found in the Bible and their not.”

      Where does it say in the bible ALONE? Show me that Jesus believed in Sola Scriptura? The Apostles? The first Christians? The Apostolic Fathers? Show me in the bible! Show me in history?

      “The Catholic Church makes new Decrees all the time , Did they come from God?”

      Yes, because not everything is contained in the bible and not every modern technological advanced moral issues are addressed in the bible. That’s why Christ mandated the church as teacher: “He who hears you, hears me. He who rejects you, rejects me” (Luke 10:16). Have you been listening to Christ’s church? Have you been rejecting her in clear conscience?

      So here’s the challenge: Ask yourself honestly if you have been too judgmental about the Catholic Church which you know practically nothing about? What you did learn about it was from vicious gossips, biased and one-sided Reformation history written by Protestants who were anti-Catholic and anti-Christ, in the last analysis.

  188. Jesus only gave One New Decree ,
    Thats it One New Commandment
    Thats to Love each other.
    Joh 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.

    2Jn 1:5 And now I ask you, dear lady–not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning–that we love one anothe

    Wow if the common got a hold of this truth the Roman Catholic Empire would lose its controll .

    I really think that Beteween 450AD and 1500AD the Catholic Preist were not TEACHING this to the Masses. Over a 1000 years locked up. Srue they wrote about it , but only other Preiest and Bishops could see it.

  189. “Sola Scriptura , that word scares your church, why because it shows up that your whole system is false, and not or ever was christian,Roman Catholic Church has refused to submit itself to the authority of God’s Word , now because of all your dogmas comming over years, you are has set apart from the true body of Christ.you talk the big talk, but run when we ask for doctrine, you have room in rome, and some people just make up whatever gives, your shabby cover-up on your bad priests, over many many years, showed the wide world, your, false, Sola Scriptura , has to be there or we all become cults, with , your false views, on about everything thats said in gods word , oh no thats not what , how we see it, peter first pope, mary as helping christ in salvation, what rubbish, a church all churches, must be judged by scripture, not or ever a church, having authority to teach gods word in a cheap unbiblical manner , without even caring if its true,scripture must take a higher interpretation over any body, but its to late for the catholic church, lots of water have passed under the bridge, going back and use the bible, will show up that your popes have got lots wrong over , what, 1 year, or 3, 4, +boy this is lots of screwups, how many little catholic souls have gone to hell, on this lies, and made-up stuff, mary, and mass, confession , to all except god, holy days, for-bidden to marry, you coward mr surkiko, you cut me off, just like i said, come on, where is your teaching to back up , your doctrine on justification, luke 18:14, give me an answer, why was this man declared rightous, this verse alone brings down your whole false teaching, where was his works, christs justification means, the sinner is declared rightous, justification, is on christ, his finished work on the cross, you insult him, everytime you put, mary, and other works to aid christ perfect finished work ,when a person truly just believes in christ, repents, he passes from spiritual death to eternal life, the person is instantaneously justified, see romans, 5:1 and romans 9:8-1, is not guilty, being rightous, is imputed not infused, see rom 4:3-5,,,roms 3:10,,,scripture clearly teaches that man is justified by faith only, roms 11:6, as stated “if its by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, or otherwise grace is no longer grace , eph 2:8-9,,,, in roms 3:28,, a man is justified by faith APART from works of the law, your teaching denies that god “god justifies the ungodly,roms 4:5,,you place an unbiblical false teaching on your people, stress, on them trying to live on human works,adding it to salvation, you have a different, gospel, doing good, confessing sin, observing ceremonies, in place of telling god you now have grounds to boast big time, you are all blind to the truth before your eyes, true salvation comes by believing in christ, the thief on the cross, to heaven with christ, ,, what did he do, just trusted in christ finished work, your gospel is false, and not in the bible, i take time here hopping someone out there will just read what gods says to get heaven, may god bless you all. george57.

  190. Someone tell me if this is the dung (dunghill) which Martin Luther was talking about?

  191. Roboman and George and Mr Duran,

    I think it is likely abundantly clear by now that you have been heard and that there will not be agreement on these issues forthcoming.

    This debate has descended into something very un Christian so I would politely ask that you find another forum where you might find a receptive audience to your views as I believe it will not be here.

  192. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.
    (Rom 13:12-14 ESV)

  193. Hi all,
    Reading (or trying to read) the discussion here has only confirmed for me that Protestantism is full of confusion, spiritual pride and endless discension. In my years as a Baptist I was always subjected to what I call a “spiritual sniff test” There was always hanging over my head the question of “Are you really saved?” If you had a wayward thought or a slightly unorthodox idea, then your salvation is immediately questioned. I have seen the same people, week after week come forward for salvation or to reconfirm their dedication to God (just to make sure the salvation stuck, I guess). Pastors often preach about some poor deceased pew warmer being turned away by Jesus in heaven because “I never knew you”. The poor sucker obviously just thought he was saved but in reality he wasn’t. The degree of sincerity in your profession of faith was the determinate factor. How sincere is sincere enough?
    And don’t even bring up charity….that’s works and We Aren’t Saved by Works!!!! So if there is charity it is announced with “sounding brass and cymbles” with so many strings attached that you quickly realize that their charity is simply marketing. The only acceptable work is earning crowns in heaven (if you get there, of course) by badgering people into coming to Jesus. I’ve often wondered if these salvations were the result of some poor victim saying and doing anything to get their aquaintance or relative off their back and nothing else. No one asks how long these “salvations” last; the Baptists only track baptisms and general attendence as signs of church affectiveness. Follow up is brief and often concentrates more on the “man with the gold ring” than the biker in the AC/DC tee shirt. And don’ t get me started on “Mega churches” and their countless demands for bigger auditoriums, bigger yourh centers, bigger television studios, multiple campuses, louder repetitive rock music and much bigger building funds.
    Okay, I’m sorry for my rant. Sorry, but the more I am with the Catholics the more I appreciate them.. .Lisa

  194. Dear Lisa,
    I need to let you know that there are also dissenters in the Catholic Church. They cause endless scandal and irritation as they profess to be Catholic but support abortion, homosexual marriage, etc. Not only that, they are annoying.

    The good thing is that we KNOW they do not really speak for the Catholic Church because we have the Catechism and Church documents that show their error. For example, Nancy Pelosi, and VP Biden.

  195. Hi all,
    Yes, I know Catholics are not perfect. That is the fallen condition of all mankind. It just seems that the practicing Catholics acknowedge their state and many Protestants feel that because they have made a profession of faith and prayed the sinners prayer that they have no more obligation to the God that saved them. There are many sincere, wonderful Protestants in the world and I owe them a tremendous debt for introducing me to Jesus and the love of his Word. But they only have a small part of the truth and I really want to know the whole and not just their part of God’s truth……Lisa

    • Hi Lisa,

      I greatly appreciate that you desire to understand the Truth of God’s will for us. I too desire to know Him in truth as well as I possibly can. He should always be our highest desire.

      I also agree that the Protestant notions of a ‘sinners prayer,” and “faith only salvation,” along with numerous others, are false doctrines. I would also like to explain that I can know that they are false by the same way that I can know that Catholic doctrine is false, by comparison to the Scriptures.

      “16All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17That the man of God may be PERFECT, THOROUGHLY FURNISHED unto all good works”(2 Timothy 3: 16-17; KJV).

      You see, the Scriptures are able to make us complete and to thoroughly equip us unto every good work. The Catholics claim that we need their Traditions, Catechism, and the Encyclicals of the Popes in order to be made perfect (complete) and thoroughly furnished (equipped) unto every good work. In fact, they claim that one must obey the Pope in order to be saved. Both of these claims contradict the passage I just quoted above, especially since the Scriptures do not even mention a Catechism or a Pope.

      They also claim that we cannot understand the Bible without some special guidance that can only come from their leaders. If this were true, then what need for the Scriptures? All we would need in reality is the Catholic Traditions. The Scriptures would serve no useful purpose. Worse, the Scriptures would in fact do nothing but produce confusion, because if you read the Scriptures using unanimously accepted hermeneutics (principle of interpretation) consistently, we find that they make perfect sense. They teach us all manner of truth and reveal the wonderful works of God in a consistent, intelligible, and harmonious way that never contradict God’s character and nature or one another. How can that be if we are in fact misunderstanding everything that the Bible says? It would be a remarkable thing indeed to read gibberish using the logical laws of interpreting language and come away with such wonderful teachings as we find in the Holy Bible. Moreover, we know that God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14: 33). I conclude then that the Bible is not gibberish, but in fact the revelation of God which He expects us to hear and understand.

      Additionally, we find much internal evidence that Jesus and the Apostles expected those who read OR HEARD the Scriptures to understand. Jesus condemned adherence to human traditions and said in Luke 16: 31 that men have Moses and the Prophets (the Old Testament Scriptures) to learn of God’s ways, and that if they do not hear them, neither will they hear if one is raised from the dead. Obviously, Jesus expected them to hear and understand the Scriptures even though He did not expect each of them to possess their own personal copy of the Scriptures. Paul says, “3How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,
      4Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)” (Ephesians 3: 3-4; KJV). Clearly then, what they read is God’s revealed truth, they are expected to understand what they read, and they are obligated to teach faithfully that, which they are expect to correctly understand from reading the Scriptures, to those whom they teach.
      The Roman Catholic leaders erroneously claim that because people didn’t have their own copy of the Scriptures that this somehow proves that God did not deliver all of His Truth to us via the Scriptures. The fact is that we may deliver God’s truth orally concurrent with the Scriptures containing all of God’s revealed truth. The fact that the Scriptures do contain all of God’s revealed truth allows us to expound the truth to the people by preaching from the Bible and using it to check ourselves to be sure we are teaching the truth. Those without Bibles of their own may still hear God’s word read to them, which is exactly how the Israelites learned God’s will for them. Are we to believe that it is impossible for men of God to faithfully preach God’s Word from the unchangeable Scriptures, but that they can faithfully and accurately preach Roman Catholic doctrine by traditions handed down orally for centuries?? If Catholic priests and bishops can teach their doctrine to the masses of people throughout the centuries from their Traditions, why could not men of God teach God’s will for mankind from the Scriptures?? Unfortunately, for most Catholics throughout history, the Roman Catholic Church kept God’s word from their followers by refusing to read the Scriptures to them in a way that was understandable, contrary to 1 Corinthians 14. So, it is not that the people couldn’t have heard the teaching of the Scriptures because they did not have their own personal copy of them, they couldn’t hear teaching from the Scriptures because the Catholic clergy chose not to teach from the Scriptures or even to read them in a language that they could understand most of the time.

      I wish I had time to address more of the falsehoods that have been asserted recently, but I do not. I plan to write an article that delivers the proof that the official Catholic doctrine claims that one must obey the Pope in order to be saved. It should be noted that it would be strange indeed for this to be true when the very notion of a Pope rests on an inference. The Scriptures THAT ARE ABLE TO THOROUGHLY EQUIP US UNTO EVERY GOOD WORK DO NOT EVEN MENTION A POPE.

      Much more could be said. May God bless your continued study of the Scriptures.

      Joe

      • Steve Ray’s recent appearance on a popular call-in show at Catholic Answers may be of interest to readers here. Topic: Are You Still Saved?

        [audio src="http://www.catholic.com/audio/2010/mp3/ca110107a.mp3" /]

        (Steve Ray is one example of how God is using his gifts and talents after his conversion to the Catholic Church)

      • Hello Joe, Can’t wait to see your article which will attempt to prove that a Protestant can be more Catholic than the Pope. I want to place a bet with you but I am not a gambling man. Anyway, please share the article when it is ready. / Regards,

      • The doctrine of Sola Scriptura is a cornerstone of Protestant doctrine. Sola Scriptura is the teaching that only those things which are explicitly written in Scripture can be believed or practiced by a Christian. There is really only a single test that one needs to apply to determine if Sola Scripture is true. One must ask the following question: Is Sola Scripture taught in Scripture?

        Think about this. If you claim that only those beliefs which are explicitly stated in Scripture are true, then Sola Scriptura must be stated explicitly in Scripture. If not, it can’t possibly be true.

        The fact is that there is not a single passage of the Holy Bible which explicitly teaches us that the Bible alone is the only source of all teaching. You simply will not find this in Scripture. Therefore, by definition, Sola Scriptura cannot be true because it doesn’t even support its own basic premise – it isn’t in the Bible! None of the Apostles taught it. Furthermore, nothing in the writings of the early Fathers – the first generation taught at the feet of the original 12 – says anything to support Sola Scriptura.

        Many Protestants will offer II Timothy 3:16-17 as a proof text for Sola Scripture. Not a word of this passage teaches Sola Scriptura. Notice that Saint Paul says to Saint Timothy that Scripture is “useful”; that is quite an understatement if he believed in Sola Scripture.

        Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox have no problem with any part of this passage. But we recognize that while everything that this passage says about the Scriptures is true, it never says that the Bible alone is our only source of teaching and practice. No scriptural passage says such a thing. It just isn’t there.

        What does the Holy Bible say is the “ground and pillar of truth” in I Timothy 3:14-15? The Scriptures? No. The individual believer? No. Martin Luther or John Calvin? No. THE CHURCH.

        I believe that what lies at the heart of Sola Scritura is pride and rebelliousness. It places the individual reader above the apostolic church. It appeals to something inside all of us – the prideful passions. It claims that as individuals, we are more authoritative than the “ground and pillar of truth” at interpreting proper belief.

        What is the result of Sola Scripture? 23,000 different Protestant denominations, all claiming to be right yet all in dissension with each other. That is what happens when any “Tom, Dick, or Harry” can interpret Scripture for himself. This state of affairs is sinful because our Lord prayed to the father that his followers be one, as he is one with the Father (John 17:21). Furthermore, there is no confusion with God (I Corinthians 14:33), but confusion is exactly what you get when the Bible is interpreted outside the Church. Again, all you need to do to see this is look up CHURCH in your yellow pages. Anything that leads us to this rebellious state of 23,000 different denominations within Christendom (namely, Sola Scripture) cannot be of God.

        As an Orthodox Christian, I believe that the Bible is the inerrant, inspired Word of God. It is our highest and most authoritative source of doctrine and practice. Anything that goes against the teachings of Scripture is wrong. In fact, Saint John Chrysostom, a Patriarch of Constantinople, said that an ignorance of Holy Scripture on the part of the common people is the greatest source of evil within the Church. However, I also know that the Bible was given to the Church through the Church and is interpreted within the Church.

        Finally, the poster stated rather bluntly that our Lord condemned adherence to all tradition (Luke 16:31). However, this is false, and another unfortunate side-effect of Sola Scripture becomes obvious here – twisting Scripture to say what you want it to say. Jesus condemns reliance on traditions of men – not all tradition. For example, Sola Scripture, which was championed by a man (Martin Luther), would be a good example of a tradition of men.

        Tradition developed from the guidance of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Church has its rightful place, and to argue otherwise is to go against what the Scriptures teach us. For example, consider some of these passages that I never highlighted in my Bible when I was a Protestant:

        “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.”
        II Thessalonians 2:15

        (In this passage, we see two sources of teaching and practice – tradition and epistle. It clearly shows that Apostolic tradition was fully established. Protestants will argue that this teaching only applied before the Bible was fully assembled. However, this is just another tradition of men – not stated anywhere in Scripture. By making that claim, they violate their own core belief – Sola Scriptura. The verse doesn’t say, hold to tradition and epistle until the Canon is fully assembled, and then just hold to epistle. When they state otherwise, they are adding their own extra-Biblical tradition.)

        “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.”
        II Thessalonians 3:6

        “Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered [them] to you.”
        I Corinthians 11:2

        Not everything our Lord did or taught is in Scripture.

        “And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.”
        John 21:25

      • Re: ‘The Bible doesn’t mention the Catechism.’

        The apostles were involved in catechesis from the beginning.

  196. hi, you cowards, scared of truth, and of the bible.

  197. Calling all Christians to join together in the Walk for Life – West Coast (San Francisco) this Saturday. There are also organized events in the East Coast (Washington, D.C.) and various locations nationally.

  198. Excellent article, Pam.
    Thanks

  199. I am a Protestant, but for years I was drawn to Catholic authors. After reading many spiritual formation books, I began going on private retreats at convents and monastaries. A few years ago we moved next door to a Catholic family and little by little their influence has kindled my curiousity even more. I began to attend Mass at different Catholic churches in the area.

    I am so disillusioned with the Protestant church — 45 minutes of singing, 45 minutes of preaching seems to be all I can find in most Evangelical churches. I don’t think I agree with all Catholic doctrine but it’s more appealing than the psychology lessons being preached at my church. I’m in my autumn years and time is running out. I feel I need to make a decision but I’m confused. I seem to get to the door, but can’t open it. Any words of advice?

    P.S. My husband will not convert.

    • Dear Sharon,
      My husband has not converted either. I thought for sure he would right away but it has been 10 years. He agrees doctrinally pretty much but something is holding him back. I just try to be a good wife and pray for him.

      I think you should go forward and explore the Catholic Faith. It is the fullness of Christian truth. There is no need to make a decision right away. Go to your parish Church and enroll in RCIA or the Inquiry class. Both of these are for you to explore on your own timetable. There should be no pressure to move on or make a decision. There is a progression but it is left to the individual to decide without pressure to go on, wait, leave for awhile, come back and when and if ready to be received into the Catholic Church. You have nothing to lose by just making this step of exploration of the Catholic Church from the inside. God Bless YOU!

  200. I always believe the doctrinal issues will be the least cause for concern. My experience is that the Catholic perspective will meet any and all challenges. Can we help you with any of the doctrinal difficulties here? Catholicism is pro-family all the way so we will pray for your husband. Ultimately, it’s obeying and doing the will of the Father so everything will gravitate toward that end.

    • I imagine most of my doctrinal issues are the same as most Protestants. I agree with you about the Catholic perspective and I agree about obedience. Thank you for your comments.

  201. Just a quick note of thanks for your prayers. I will becomfirmed and receive 1st Eucharist on April 10. This website helped me to make the decision to enter RCIA (an incredible program). Please continue your work to inform those in need of the truth about the Catholic Church. . God bless you all and thank you…..Lisa K

    • Amen . Welcome home, Lisa !
      “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations … and teaching them to obey EVERYTHING that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt 28:19-20)

  202. I found your spiritual autobiography most heart warming. I became a Christian first of via a Baptist church and then due to it being besieged by charismatics explored and joined a pentecostal church. I was always insecure as a protestant because in my town alone there were about ten denominations, not counting the Church Of England, which itself encompassed four different ‘ways’ Liberal,Evangelical, Anglo Catholic and BCM adherents. It is not surprising that it has become ever more divided over the years.

    I longed for a church I could trust and that led me to the Catholic Church.

    It’s ironic to me that Sola Scriptura Christians don’t realise that the early church [In Acts] didn’t possess a canon such as we have today and that nowhere is Sola Scriptura mentioned in The Bible.

    I am very happy for you. Happy 12th Birthday.

    David

  203. Hi Mrs Pam..I am Darwin de la Cruz, from the Philippines, a strong and devoted Catholic nation.. I am very happy reading your story. IF only other Protestants can realize their mistakes, then all will be one in the Holy, Catholic Church.

    May GOD bless you more and your family. Continue spreading your story of conversion and GOD will be very happy for that.

    May the Blessed Virgin Mary be our refuge and protectress..AMEN

  204. Hi Pam, your a great defender of the catholic faith.
    It is beautiful to be in communion with the Church of the ages.

  205. Thank you Darwin and Tradebatur for you kind comments.

  206. Well finally:>) Now I have found the piece to the puzzles I have been missing on your blog. Now I can start at the beginning. Again have a great Thanksgiving. God Bless, SR

  207. You are all quarreling about what’s in the Bible. I haven’t heard anything yet about the historical element of the debate. Fact is that Jesus never founded a church (a verse taken from Matthew 16:18 does not do it.) The word ekklesia does not mean a whole church, but a congregation. And it has been supposed that Eusebius was the one who made Peter the first pope and that he was the one who interpolated this verse into the gospel according to Matthew. There is no historical evidence whatsoever that Peter ever set foot in Rome. He was a simple fisherman who spoke Aramaic and along with about 98% of his fellow countrymen, he was illiterate. The two epistles ascribed to Peter are forgeries. Peter could never have known Greek, let alone the sophisticated Greek the epistles demonstrate, the second more than the first.
    Franciscan monks discovered Peter’s tomb in Jerusalem, not in Rome.
    They found, in fact, a first-century ossuary with Peter’s name ‘Simon Bar Jonah’ clearly inscribed on it.
    I can see why you try to wriggle the first church into a framework that supports your claim, but I fail to see how it does. Neither do I see any historical evidence that the Roman Catholic church did not begin with Constantine, the evil emperor, who murdered his own son and threw his wife into a tub of boiling water, apart from other heinous crimes he committed. Eusebius was bishop of Cesarea at the time of Constantine and the emperor’s confidant.
    Peto Veritatem.

    • I will trust the better and more reliable tradition which places Peter’s grave in Rome anytime. Keith conveniently left out the “facts” that the bones of of Jesus, Mary, Mary Magdalene, Judas, etc. were supposedly also discovered together with the tomb of Peter in Jerusalem. There goes the Resurrection and all the preaching is in vain (1 Cor 15:14). This is how far liberal Protestantism has gone …..

    • Keith,

      Interesting …….. but the truth will set free, even for a descendant from Dutch Calvinists like you.

  208. Thank you for your opinion, Keith, but we don’t agree with it. You have been fed anti-Catholic propaganda.

    • “bfhu, on February 23, 2012 at 3:24 pm said:
      Thank you for your opinion but we don’t agree with it. You have been fed anti-Catholic propaganda.”

      I think the Catholic Church invented propoganda , So in retrospec We reformers are just following are former Catholic tradition.

      Matt: 7:5 “You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.

  209. Wow, Keith. I rarely respond to anything on this blog, but your piece reminds me where I came from 40 years ago. In my view back then the pope was the(or an) antichrist, and the apparitions of the virgin Mary were demonic in origin. After three years at a Bible College I realized that there were too many positions on too many issues for me to be securely confident in all the ones that I chose. When I prayed that God would show me where He wanted me, I was certainly not pleased with His answer; but many years later I have never regretted accepting to grace to become one of His sheep and follow Him. I pray that you will seek Him honestly and not fear the truth.

  210. hi, i am a catholic and have always been a catholic, but i got to a protestant school, and well with the way they speak about catholic it isnt very polite. i had to stand up for the catholic church once in my philosophy class. When i said something there were about 5 hands up to contradict me. And i have been asked a lot of questions, about my faith. And well im still in school and i still have questions and i was wondering if you could answer them. But i never would leave my church, because to be honest i never felt more happier worshiping God then i do in mass. I feel like God’s presence is there on the altar watching us. And i feel happy. I like listening to people preach about the Bible, but if i had the choice i would choose mass because i feel more closer to God there then i do anywhere else. But still i want to be able to answer some questions that people try to argue with me about, and i want to give them logical arguments not ignore them. So do you think you can help me? Here are just 2 questions:

    What do you think of the concept of purgatory?
    And what happens during the Eucharist? Is it really turned it the body and blood or is it merely a symbolic phase?
    i would appreciate hearing what u think on these topics and please reply, thanks!

    • Dear Athira,
      I have many posts on just those topics. I will give you links below to these articles on my site.On the right hand side you will see a “category cloud” where you can find these topics and many other that might interest you. Read posts I give you in the links below but do not expect to have them memorized. If you do the homework then it will increase your faith and make it stronger. Then, when you are asked a question you shoot up a quick prayer to our Lady and answer the best you can.

      Do not get discouraged if you forgot things or did not make the case for our faith as well as you would have liked. Conversion is by the power of the Holy Spirit and a heart open to the truth. And the Holy Spirit can work in an open heart with whatever defense you are able to give of the Catholic Church.

      If you keep this in mind it will help you to be charitable at all times. Anger never works the righteousness of God. Protestant questions can be very rude but they really may not mean to be rude they just have honest questions that sound so rude to Catholic ears.

      I try to give as much scripture to support Catholic beliefs as I can b/c it is the only thing Protestants will accept. However, NO WHERE IN SCRIPTURE DOES IT EVER SUPPORT THE PROTESTANT BELIEF THAT ALL CHRISTIAN TRUTH MUST BE FOUND IN THE BIBLE.

      So, as often as they ask, where is your Catholic belief in scripture. You can remind them that their belief that everything must be found in scripture is not scriptural either.

      Do Protestant Traditions Negate the Word of God?

      PURGATORY
      Where is the Biblical Evidence for Purgatory?

      Where is Purgatory in Scripture?

      Where Did the Catholic Church Get the Idea of Purgatory?

      EUCHARIST

      Early Church Beliefs in the Eucharist

      When Did Jesus Teach Communion was His Flesh and Blood?

      Killing Jesus Over and Over

      Communion-Symbol Only?

      Martin Luther On the Real Presence

      Let me know how it goes and you can ask me questions any time.

      • I thought I would clarify something for the catholics that deal with Evangelicals. I was raised catholic but now base my faith on the Bible. This does not mean that I believe if its not in the Bible its not true. It means, how do we know its true if its not in the Bible, cant be verified with scripture or does it agree with scripture.Basically its an effort to get rid of things “man” may have made up that may sound good but may not be true. Purgatory is a good example. Could it be true? Sure. Is it for a fact, we dont know. It sounds good but how do you know its true? Because someone told you? Because a pope decided that answer fit some of the mysteries of faith? I think it could be taught as a possibility but not fact.
        Pennace is another one. I was taught growing up in the catholic church that Pennace was neccessary for the forgiveness of sin. Biblically Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient. We are not forgiven from sin by works but by grace. If pennace was just an optional sacrifice people were willing to make, I think thats great. But the catholic definition of pennace makes it a requirement for the forgiveness of sin.
        Also another problem is that if we believe everything the Catholic church tells us to as handed down from the Pope. What happens when two Pope’s theologies are different? Or one Pope’s theology changes a little?
        The catholic church is a good christian church. Im not anti catholic by any means. My father is a catholic and I was raised catholic. I just see some hang ups with the theology from time to time.
        Also falling back on the fact that the catholic church was the first organized church isnt the best way to go either. The catholic church has changed dramatically over the years from what it was in the beginning. While they do preserve some traditions that other churches have thrown out they have also, like most churches, have made some huge mistakes which means it is not perfect.
        The church are the people who follow Christ. People are imperfect. Christ is perfect. We cant confuse the two.
        I will definately say that the catholic church shows a great amount of reverence and respect for tradition and worship, especially with Communion.
        Sorry for droning on. My original point was that just because people want you to show them scripture does not mean that they dont believe it unless it is in the Bible. Sometimes they just want something to support a belief that otherwise could just be someone’s idea. We cant know everything about God, we are not all knowing. Sometime we have to say “I dont know the answer to that question” and be ok with that. A lot of people invent answers to questions they dont know the answer to. We should be cautious of this. We should not blindly accept what anyone tells us. And now our best way to tell fact from fiction is comparing it to the Bible, especially making sure it doesnt conflict with the teachings of Christ.

        • @ Believer: Your good intention is well taken. But to be honest (and I don’t know how to put it any more charitably), your knowledge of Catholicism is almost nil. Your knowledge of the bible is just as lacking. If this is what happened when a Catholic turned Evangelical Protestant, then it is a very sad affair indeed. When someone like BFHU came from the other direction, it is so refreshing because he/she shows a tremendous maturity in faith and understanding of the words of God. You were either not paying attention or was just poorly catechized when you were young. Instead of talking in half-truths, untruths or even blatant lies about Catholicism, you should first learn to represent the church teachings fairly and honestly. Otherwise, you quickly loss credibility …

  211. “NO WHERE IN SCRIPTURE DOES IT EVER SUPPORT THE PROTESTANT BELIEF THAT ALL CHRISTIAN TRUTH MUST BE FOUND IN THE BIBLE”
    This not true and is not a Reformed Doctrine.

    Two Doctrines that make the Reformed different from Catholicism
    1, Justification by Faith alone- Catholics Believe that Salvation can only come from the Roman Catholic Church. (Not from the Resurrected Christ)
    2. Sola Scriptoria, Which means the Government of the Church comes from Scripture, Not from a Pope who thinks he is GOD, Only God is infallible. This was introduced by Luther to hold Clergy accountable for their misuses and crimes to the people also it was in response to indulges. Selling a piece of paper to buy a loved one out of purgatory or your future sins to spend less time in purgatory. (The work of our Lord and Savior wasn’t enough to purchase your sin at the cross.)

    You can’t refute; it is historically accurate

    All of the rest of are differences are minimal usually caused by over zealous Charismatic and Evangelicals. Which Charamatics and Evangelicals.are not even considerd reformed ,

  212. How blessed your conversion story is and how great a witness to the faith you are in replying to the many that ‘throw down the gauntlet of divers protestant errors.

    I grew up many years ago in a family that was particularly secular. My mother had abandoned the faith early on blaming her schooling and yet became more embittered when, divorced, she ‘re-married’. I knew nothing of Christ until the age of twenty-seven when, through discussions with a Baptist minister I accepted Jesus into my life.
    Whilst I was always uplifted by the Wesleyan hymns [This was in pre Praise Song days] I still hungered and this hunger was based on my difficulty in understanding why Mary’s role was so ignored.

    So I sought the help of a Catholic priest and entered into Catechises with him. There was no RCIA then. I was received into The Church on All Souls day 1979. These days I would wait until the Easter Vigil.

    I have had many trials – all self inflicted – but am today filled with much joy at being where God wants me. If anyone one was in the position I was in at twenty-seven, searching for meaning and purpose I wouldn’t hesitate in telling them to visit your site.

    God Bless and Peace

  213. i am pround to be a catholic but i believe that the church needs to change some of its rule , i dont think it rigth for the religions leaders to go around spreading what they think is rigth , i dont think any one has that rigth and i also think that no matter how much good the church dose people are only going to see what they want to see

    • Hello Lucy, I think the Catholic leaders should try to educate the flock about the political issues as much as possible. The Church will never tell us which political party to vote, but that through education we will hopefully be able to make a better choice at the voting booth in accordance with our faith. For instance, the pro-life issues are more important than the economic ones. We can always depend on God to provide our daily needs but choosing “manna” over the murder of innocent lives will be wrong. When everything is equal when we have say two political candidates with the same economic policy but with different moral agenda (pro-life vs. pro-abortion), our conscience will tell us to pick the one who’s more agreeable with our faith. Just because a lot of Catholics will refuse to listen to the Church does not mean that we should not keep trying. For myself, I’m very ashamed of the missing Catholic voting bloc … that is why the enemies (like Stalin) of the church can point to us and mock: “How many divisions does the Pope have?” Many Catholics are crucifying Christ over and over again with their bad decisions …

  214. Man cannot live by bread alone but by EVERY word that proceedeth from the mouth of God – this means all the old and new testament.

  215. Hello

    I just read the entire transcript. Very interesting. I thought I knew a lot until I read this site. You are heavyweights.

  216. I just called St. Jerome’s church in Los Angeles and asked if Mary was sinless until the time she was assumed into heaven and the answer was yes.

    • Yes Mary was conceived without a fallen nature and through the grace of God maintained her sinlessness. Adam and Eve were also created without a sin nature but fell from grace. The 2nd Adam, Jesus, and the 2nd Eve, were obedient their whole lives.

  217. Sola Scripture is sufficient :-
    2 Timothy 3:15–17
    15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 So that the man of God may be complete, FULLY equipped for every good work.

  218. What is the difference between impeccability and infallability?

    • Dear Terry,

      I try:

      Infallibility: from Latin origin (‘in’, not + ‘fallere’, to deceive), is a term with a variety of meanings related to knowing truth with certainty.

      Impeccability: the quality of being exempt from sin or incapable of sinning.

    • Dear Terry,
      The Pope in infallible, does not err, when teaching about faith and morals to the whole Church by the power of the Holy Spirit. He is not infallible when discussing politics, math, sports etc. He is also not impeccable because the Pope sins; he is not free from sin. But many people think that when the Church says the Pope is infallible that we mean he never does anything wrong. ie does not sin.

  219. Hope eveyone has a great Sabbath/Lord’s day tomorrow. In my studies I believe that everyday is our Sabbath and that Jesus became our ultimate rest. The early church met every day so I would say that the NT is a progressive document.

  220. By the way, thanks for your answer about infallability.
    As Red Skelton would say, good night and may God bless.

  221. Good morning

    Hope everyone is still having a safe Labor Day weekend.

    On the question of salvation, If I came to you and said I had only five minutes to live, how would you handle that?

  222. I would take you to a priest for confession and viaticum.

  223. Okay, but remember, I have only a few minutes until I’m in eternity. I need comfort immediately.

  224. There is no better comfort than freedom from sin and Jesus. If there was not time to go to a priest I would pray with/for you.

    • Be like the penitent thief and rest on the mercy of God. Try for a perfect contrition but realistically … get ready for the cleansing fires of purgatory to be made perfect. At least, one will be saved … but as through fire.

  225. Thanks for that. So I guess we’re on the same page. I always like quoting John 5:24 where it says “He that hears my word and believes on him that sent me has everlasting life.”

  226. And by the way, I do believe you can lose your salvation. Protestant churches are 50/50 on this. I see three groups falling from grace in the scriptures: angels, new testament saints, and old testament Israel.

  227. I’m not quite sure were to put this on this form so Ill put it here
    Did any Catholics Watch the RNC speech of Paul Ryan?
    .
    So do Roman Catholics actually share a common Faith with Mormons?

    Hard to believe since Roman Catholics have always thought of the Protestant reform as hyersy. Mormons don’t even qualify as being reformed or protestant..

    • Dear Robo,

      Mormons are a sort of Protestant from the Catholic perspective although their baptism is not valid and a Mormon being received into the Catholic Church would need to be baptized with the Trinitarian formula. They protested against everyone catholics and Protestants. Their God is VERY different from all Catholic and Protestants. We do not share a common faith but many common values. I heard Paul Ryan’s speech and I did not hear him say we share the same FAITH. I think you are mistaken.

  228. Mormon’s were classed as a cult in Scotland. They have an extra bible
    supposedly given to the lost tribes of Israel in south america.
    The extra bible ( the book of mormon) is counterfeit but reads well.
    Plus Jesus would never change his commandment back to polygamy –
    which is just one of the many things that prove they are a satanic cult
    with masonic roots . The laity in the mormon church can be nice people but their worship is not based on the real bible.

    There is good testimony on the internet of people who have come out of this church.
    They will most likely be in the one world church in the last days .

  229. Mormons teach tri-theism and that God was once a man since he has flesh and bones. God is also NOT omnipresent. When you see them please go preach the real Christ. They are hell-bound.

  230. Would everyone agree that christians are the NT priests since they represent God to man whereas prophets represent man to God?

    • Dear Terry,
      Not exactly. All believers belong to the priesthood of all believers:

      1 Peter 2 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house[a] to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ….9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

      But there is also the Ministerial priesthood. These are the priests and bishops of the Catholic Church. Just like in the OT there was a priesthood of all Israel and the priestly tribe of Levi. So, in both OT and NT we have the priesthood of all believers and a ministerial priesthood. A prophet is one who speaks the word of God to others. I don’t see it as the prophet represents man to God.

  231. Do the Catholics teach that each believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit?

  232. Romans 8:9-11.

    • Thanks Terry,yes. Of course we do believe that the Holy Spirit dwells within us. But, we believe that if we sin gravely; that is commit a deadly sin that we lose the grace of the Spirit’s indwelling. But if we confess our sin He is faithful to forgive us and we obtain the indwelling Holy Spirit once again.

  233. Thanks for that.

    What was the first documented instance of Mary’s impeccability and is it essential to believe in her sinlessness in order to be an effective, vibrant Cathoilc?

    • I do not know the first documented instance of Mary’s sinlessness. There are writings of the Father’s that assume it ad even Matin Luther believed in her immaculate conception. I have these posts for further reading.

      Martin Luther On Mary’s Immaculate Conception


      Fathers on Immaculate conception

      And yes, faithful Catholics are obliged to believe in all of the dogmas of the Catholic Church. People who pick and choose are heretics. The word heresy means “to pick and choose.” Many may have difficulty believing some Catholic doctrines but but rather than just decide to reject one needs to research and pray to understand. For me I became convinced that Catholicism was the historic Church with doctrine passed down by the apostles and with authority to teach. The fact that Adam and Eve were created sinless shows us that God does not have a problem creating sinless humans. So Adam and Eve were immaculate (until they fell) and the Second Adam and Eve (Jesus & Mary) were immaculate.

  234. Do you also witness to other religions and faiths?

  235. This question is from a friend of mine: Is the average Catholic biblically literate and are they encouraged each week to bring and study their bibles?

    • Dear Terry,
      The average Catholic is not as biblically literate as your average Protestant because Christ and the Eucharist is the center of our faith not Bible Study. Now I know that Protestants believe Christ is the center of their faith as well. However, for Protestants Bible Study and Bible Knowledge is taught as THE way to show devotion to Christ. But for Catholics the sacraments and prayer are how we show our devotion to Christ. Catholics hear most of the Bible at mass every Sunday every three years. But Catholics are not, unfortunately, encouraged to study the Bible like Protestants. Protestants and Catholics live in different cultures of Faith. Catholics do not bring their Bibles to mass b/c the four scriptural readings are in the OT, Psalms, NT & Gospels. But many Catholics do bring a missal to mass which contains all the readings for each mass. But if Catholics were encouraged to bring and read scripture more, they would. Like I said we live in different cultures.

  236. It is difficult to see how Jesus can be the centre of a catholics faith if they do not read and meditate on God’s word. Jesus is the word made flesh so how can we know about Him if we do not read of Him from the start of the OT to the end of the NT.
    The missals only contain some of the Bible and you would have to attend mass every day to get through it in three years.

    All the way through the Bible Christians are told that they must hear or read the WORD 24/7 – this is the only way we can keep our fleshly natures in check. All the apostles and disciples like Timothy knew the OT by heart and also the gospels which were taught by Jesus for
    more than three years. The NT letters would circulate immediately
    they were sent by Paul and Peter etc.
    There would also be long sermons such as Paul preaching all night.

    My experience in the CC is small or tiny portions of scripture once a week mainly – no bibles and a few people with missals – no bible study
    nights or much in the order of prayer groups
    Fellowship was worldly like dancing in the church hall etc. I must confess I fell fully into this milieu thinking that once a week attendance
    is enough for salvation.

  237. Dear Charles,
    Where does it say in Scripture that Christians MUST read or hear Scripture every day for salvation? David says he meditates on God statutes day and night but one can do that without reading scripture every day.I suspect that your requirements for salvation are greater than Our Fathers who knows our weaknesses and desires all men to be saved.

  238. bfhu – there are countless commands to read and meditate or hear the
    WORD – these were all copied from websites :-

    Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous,

    Meditation on the Word was not a task but a joy to David, for he said “O how love I thy law, it is my meditation all the day” (Psa. 119:97).

    Deuteronomy
    These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.
    “You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.
    “You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.
    “You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
    We are not simply to learn God’s Word with our mind, but also with our heart. We are to embrace it emotionally as well as intellectually.
    When are we to talk of God’s Word? Outside, inside, standing, sitting, lying… all the time, anywhere. It should be everpresent as a tattoo, and posted around our house.

    Memorize Scripture to help you fight against Satan.
    Jesus modeled this for us in his wilderness experience. In response to Satan’s temptations, Jesus quoted God’s Word. Likewise, as Paul is listing the battle gear for spiritual soldiers, he talks about taking up the weapon of “the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God” (Eph. 6:17). How will you go through the battle without a sword in your hand?

    Luther said:

    And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God hath willed his truth to triumph through us. The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him; his rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure; one little word shall fell him.

    Sadly, Christians often treat the sword of the Spirit like an old sword in a museum. We admire the ancient weapon. We notice its beauty. We see it placed in a place of honor. But we deem it practically useless for modern warfare. Don’t we need some different weapons now in this sophisticated age? No. There is nothing out-of-date about God’s Word. You need it to overcome your enemy. Your weapons are prayer in the Spirit and the sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17-18).

    • Dear Charles,

      Word and Spirit are important principles in Protestantism, whereas the Catholic Church has a rite in the centre of the worship. Besides reading and hearing the Word, the sacraments are for Catholics the visible Word, Jesus himself is in the centre of the faith through the sacraments, particularly in the sacrament of the Eucharist, the visible Word by excellence. For Catholics the Word is not only readable and audible but also visible. In my opinion Luther was obsessed by the Scripture, he even added the word “ALONE” (“allein” in German) to Romans 3:28 controversially so that it read: “thus, we hold, then, that man is justified without the works of the law to do, ALONE through faith” The word “alone” does not appear in the Greek texts, but Luther defended his translation by maintaining that the adverb “alone” was required both by idiomatic German and the apostle Paul’s intended meaning.

    • Dear Charles,

      I and all Catholics would certainly agree with the scripture you have used but none of the verses command daily scripture reading and Bible Study for Salvation. As is usually the case, Catholics agree with scripture but not the Protestant interpretation of it.

      I congratulate and encourage all who read, study and meditate on Scripture daily. This is pleasing to our Lord. And millions of Catholics do this as well. But, it is never commanded in order to be saved. This is one reason it is not emphasized in Catholicism. Another reason is that historically, individual lay people were unable to read scripture from their own personal Bible for centuries of Christian History. Therefore the Catholic Church read scripture to the Faithful. 500 years ago Protestantism began to require scripture reading based on no new revelation or confirming miracles for a change in the practice of the Faith. Based on no authority Martin Luther just declared it. And Protestants have been trying to prop it up with scripture ever since.

  239. That was a good word. I am reminded of the Bereans who examined the message of Paul for accuracy. They apparently studied the word each day. What this does is prevent someone from scripture abuse, though they may be good men. We can’t get it right all the time.
    I’m reminded of a visiting pastor who was clearly teaching in error but afterward, nobody (except me) came and confronted him, though we all agreed that it was not accurate. Why do we stay silent? Fear, intimidation, lack of knowledge, indifference…
    I think the Catholics should teach scripture reading , memorization, and study. We need that too. I didn’t start studying the bible until I was 15 years in the Lord.

  240. bfhu – the above scriptures command scripture reading as do countless others – how can you agree then disagree. Jesus said you need to abide in His Word – how can anyone do this unless they are clearly aware of his Word in order to keep all the commandments.

    If the early Christians could read – there is no reason why later Christians could not read. Without the sword of the Spirit the devil
    is more powerful than we are. Because catholics were taught that Bible study equals “protestantism” they are lulled into thinking that
    about a page of scripture once a week is enough. You were lucky to have a protestant start – millions of others did not have that start.

    • Dear Charles,
      A person can hear the Word of God and meditate on it without needing to “read scripture every day”. A person can apply what they hear and meditate on every day to their lives and live a holy life without having to literally “read scripture every day”. The scriptures you quoted certainly encourages this but they simply do not command it. I agree we benefit from it in our spiritual battles but a person can have an understanding of the spiritual life and the Enemy we face every day and through prayer they can commune with Our Lord and frequent the Sacraments to grow in holiness. Our goal after all is not knowledge but holiness. You may not understand how it can be done b/c of the Protestant culture that surrounds you. But it can and has by many illiterate Saints. It is not about how much scripture you hear or read every day but what you do with it. Many Protestant get caught up thinking that daily scripture reading automatically equals growth in holiness. But, it does not and can even lead to pride rather than humility. It is actually easier to read scripture every day than deny the flesh and pursue holiness.

  241. Martin Luther did not need new revelations to realise scripture is essential – it was already there in the bible. We should be ‘ obsessed”
    by scripture in order to live our lives by it.

    • Dear Charles,
      Martin Luther had NO AUTHORITY to change the Christian faith and add doctrines never before believed in the history of Christianity. He didn’t need to do that in order to realize the benefit of scripture. St. Jerome said in the 400’s AD:

      “To be ignorant of scripture is to be ignorant of Christ.”

      It is a Protestant myth that the Catholic Church does not value Scripture. And herein lies the difference and the danger of Luther’s doctrine as it affects Protestants. We should not be obsessed with scripture but with Christ, a pursuit of holiness, and evangelization. This is what our Catholic Faith teaches us.

      The fact that many Catholics don’t practice this only proves many Catholics don’t practice our Faith. Protestants have a false sense of superiority over the Catholic Church because they leave a church they perceive as “dead” or less than perfect or when they disagree with the pastor or find the pastor in sin, or the music is not to their taste etc. Some even start a new church. These Protestants are very fervent and truly desire to serve Our Lord. And each time they leave for a holier Church or a more scripture based teaching church or a church with more uplifing music they feel their new church is truly following Christ better than the church they left. Until, perhaps as time goes by something makes them see faults and they leave again. This gives them a false sense being in a better church than the Catholic Church in which all Catholics find a home both fervent and less fervent, both saints and sinners and everything in between. This makes it VERY easy to find fault with the Catholic Church as Protestant focus on the less fervent and more worldly Catholics and compare them to their own fervent new church. A proper comparison would encompass all the exemplary holy Saints inspired by our One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. But as G.K. Chesterton said:

      “It is impossible to be just to the Catholic Church. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it. But when that affection has passed a certain point it begins to take on the tragic and menacing grandeur of a great love affair.”
      -G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

      • I’m so sick of the Name Bashing of Christian brothers and sisters that happen to practice in the Protest ant values. I will name a couple of Facts:
        One Luther was appointed from the office of Paps to Teach and study Holy Scriptures. (This in the Magisteriam) Luther was upset at the abuses of the Clergy in Rome and parts over Europe. Most clergy had never even read the New Testament during Luther’s time 1500s.
        2nd There was no written Doctrine of the infallibility of the Pope, it was another Assumption all Assumptions are not found in the Holy Scriptures. Infallibility wasn’t written into Doctrine in tell 1870. (Also found in the Magisteriam) Luther had all the Authority he needed it came from God. Since no doctrine had been written to establish the Catholic as the Authority here on earth. The Popes and Liggett and cardinals should have listened to Luther. There would have never been a split.
        3rd all rights come from above endued by their Creator not from a Pope or a Dictator or from any Man, they come from God. And where do we find out about God or knowledge of God, Holy Scriptures and the church of Jesus Christ. Not by Roman rites or any other.

  242. Yes you could either hear the word eg on a tape or read it so I don’t see a distinction here. Yes memorisation of scripture would be equivalent if you brought it to mind – this would initially involve reading in order to memorise – so don’t see your disagreement here.

    Did it ever occur to catholics that the reformation might have been a move of God. After the Roman church burnt Savonarola for trying to purify a church from the inside (he succeeded in Florence) that had reached decadence and hypocrisy ( google up) Martin Luther came along about 10 years later still as far as I know trying to reform from inside. His reforms were rejected.

    Because the word of God is living and active it can miraculously change a person from Bad to Good. We can’t get this just by meditating on some sort of feeling.

    Since Jesus said only a few would be saved and He was preaching to
    believers it is only by using the Bible as a benchmark that we can know
    if we are without spot and blemish. How many are a few – this terrifies me since in a boat accident of 100 persons a few survivors might be
    5 in 100 or 1 in 20.

    If you google up your own church fathers on “the fewness of the saved” constant bible study is absolutely necessary.
    Good preaching and teaching based on the bible would be the same-
    but it would have to be of long duration.

    Man cannot live (have eternal life) by bread alone but by EVERY WORD (the whole bible) that proceedeth from the mouth of the Lord.
    This is not a recommendation but a necessity.

    • Dear Charles,

      You are right about every word from GOD (only) in the bible, but by adding words to the inspired scriptures Luther exceeded sacred boundaries. With this act the ex-monk promoted self-presumed authority and private interpretation of the bible, and had disastrous consequences, that is, disunity and chaos.

      • hoc est – is it not the catholic church that has added to the inspired scriptures more than the protestant church even killing people who were trying to read the bible.
        As I said above all christians are commanded to read and interpret the bible – how could a christian read the ten commandments and not interpret them.- besides the 2nd commandment was tampered with.

        This no interpretation thing is twisting the words of Peter 2 1:20 which are saying scripture came by the Holy Spirit . It is nothing to do with not reading scripture.

        • Charles – It is the Protestant church which disregarded some of the books like Wisdom, Macabees and 3 Little Children from Daniel (which we regard as God-inspired according to the traditional and old Jewish list of Canonical books). So they are ones short of books from a Catholic perspective.

          Hey, the Word of God also instructed us that we should NOT rely on our own interpretations because it may be skewed or wrong. So we are supposed to clarify from the church as it is the pillar and foundation of truth – according to Timothy. Besides, the church (like all churches claim) to be led by the holy spirit, yet all believe there’s only 1 church.

          By the way, the Spirit of God is a Spirit of Truth, Holiness and Unity, not of confusion, affliction and disparity.

  243. Jerome was trying to correct his own church and said he got this revelation from the Lord when he himself had fallen away from scripture study – so the story goes.

  244. John chapter 6 talks a lot about bread: buying, providing, eating, and the bread of life.
    In verse 27 it says “do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.” Verse 29 says the work of God is… ‘to believe in the one he has sent.” The word believe is also mentioned in verses 35, 40, and 47. After that Jesus mentions eating his flesh and drinking his blood.
    It seems that the context of this passage is equating eating and drinking to belief. Jesus told parables and also used hyperbole to drive a point home (take up your cross, hating your father and mother).
    The chapter ends with those believing and those who did not.

  245. hoc est
    Yes but using Luther’s mistakes as a way out of reading scripture does
    not nullify the countless scriptures that tell christians that the WORD of GOD is the way of salvation – a lamp to light the way without which we would be in darkness and fall into a ditch.

    Luther did not like James’s letter but bible reading flourished from his
    sola scripture approach. The letter of James clearly states that without works one’s faith is dead so Luther himself was departing from scripture.

  246. Today my wife and I went to the Church of God in Christ in our area (Inglewood CA) and heard a sermon on Daniel chapter one. The question today was: Is it possible to walk in integrity and still compromise?
    Daniel and his friends decided not to defile themselves with the royal food, yet they still had their names changed and were indoctrinated in the practices of the Babylonians. Next the Bishop spoke on the election and said that however we vote, we will compromise.
    I’m interested in hearing about what went on at your local churches today. What was the sermon about and what was the application?
    Also, I’m interested in your statement: ” most protestant churches incorporate some form of Calvanism.” What do you mean by “some form” and do you know for a fact that this is true because I would to call several churches tomorrow and find out?
    And, would you say that the majority of people in your church possess critical thinking skills? If not, is there anything that’s being done to encourage self-motivation?

    • Dear Terry,
      I am in Washington D.C. with my husband and went to the Basiica of the Immaculate Conception. My son is doing graduate work at the Dominican House of Studies and I am quite sure a Dominican said mass and gave the homily. It was excellent. The Gospel was about Jesus opening the ears of a deaf man and the priest talked about how we must be open to God.

      When I said, “most churches incorproate some form of Calvinism” I am refering to his five spiritual laws. Primarily the churches around my area in Southern CA. Most Churches believe that once you are saved you are always saved. Some add the caveat “IF you were saved”. Which has the ultimate effect if one thinks about it of still leaving one’s salvation in doubt since how can one truely know IF they are saved?

      I have no idea if most people in my church have critical thinking skills. Most people are not trained to think critically. I don’t even know if i do since I have never been trained in logic and philosophy. But critical thinking skills are not needed for salvation b/c the Holy Spirit does not need a person to hae them to change hearts.

  247. Thanks for the reply. I’m a Biola graduate of the BOLD program and I love the apologetic side of evangelism. Apollos is my favorite guy.
    When I asked if anyone in your church possessed critical thinking skills you said weren’t sure, but you also added that these skills are not needed for salvation. Why did you bring up salvation when I never asked about it?

    • Dear Terry,
      Because Protestants, and me in particular, as a Protestant generally placed a great emphasis upon knowledge to the point that and underlying, but not acknowledged idea, salvation was dependent upon having correct knowledge. Without it one’s salvation was not considered to be probable. Sorry if that is not your thought.

  248. Oh, by the way, I called several churches in my area about the Calvinism/Arminianism debate and we’re running about 50/50.

    • Catholics, Nazarenes, Calvary Chapels and Assembly of God do not generally subscribe to Eternal Security. Most other Protestant Churches tend to believe in Eternal Security.

  249. Wonderful life story! How many of your kids are Catholic now?

    About myself, I too also thought that Protestantism was actually the pathway of truth several years ago. It seemed so easy and convenient to be a Protestant Christian – like how they always preach that you’ll be saved through Faith (when you believe or once you believe).

    I also thought that Protestants are the true Christians, since Catholics are always labelled as ‘Non-Christians’ (by them), until I once asked myself and my friends which Protestant denomination is the one with the Truth. None was able to get me a satisfying answer. Like you, I became questioning and critical but the Catholic church was never in mind. I read up on a lot of Protestant apologetic and was convinced that Protestantism is right, but which in Church? Different churches preach differently.

    I began praying and reading the Word of God on my own till I began to realize that the Word of God is starting to tell me something. I then believed I was prompted by the Holy Spirit to switch on my computer and read up on the apologetic once more. But the Spirit dwelling in me wanted me to read on Catholic instead, but I was defiant. The Spirit’s prompting in me did not subside, but it grew heavier till I researched on Catholicism.

    Hence, that moment of seeking of Truth by the Holy Spirit eventually led me to the Catholic church; which I am glad to return Home, the true Christ-centered Church of God.

  250. Spencer – but note how you got your revelation – from the study of your bible which unfortunately most catholics do not do

  251. Spencer where does the bible tell us not to rely on our own interpretations ?

    • You are so misinformed. Actually majority of Catholics do, or rather ALL owns and reads the Scripture. (Depends on their literacy rate or ability to purchase a bible – especially in Third World Countries). Nonetheless, there’s still the catechism in which the Church summarises all its scripture-based teachings. Even if those Catholics, whom you have personally encountered, do not really know anything about the Bible; they do not represent the 1.2Billion Catholics around the globe – like me and Pam. Do take note on your absolute comments because it’s simply a sweeping-statement.

      Regarding the interpretation: Very clearly at 2 Peter 1:20
      ’20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.’

  252. Spencer – you have not taken the quote in context . What peter is saying is that he and the rest of the apostles do not write their letters
    by their own thoughts but their words come from the Holy Spirit . As I said already Peter is not saying dont read scripture – he is saying do read scripture because it does not come from him but by the Holy Spirit.

    Here it is in context :-
    Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21).[2]
    Peter is NOT saying that one should not read the Scriptures with a view of seeking to comprehend. One must apply reason in order to reach certain conclusions based upon the context.
    If Peter is saying that no one should study the Scriptures in order to clarify his/her conclusions, then one wonders why Paul told Timothy: “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

    I was in a catholic church for 25 years and apart from the weekly readings of a few paragraphs and a very short homily their was no bible study.

    • Yes, I admit that I got that out of context. It’s all right to read it on your own, but once you’ve any doubts, one should always go to the Church to clarify as it is the pillar and foundation of Truth (Timothy). The early Church bishops are the Apostles themselves (current ones are successors as you know being once Catholic), hence, teachings are correctly led by the Holy Spirit. It also shows that one should NOT rely on your own, but from the Church.
      In the Bible, as you know there are 3 kinds of Spirits mentioned. God, human & evil. Claiming yourself to accurately comprehend The Scripture just like how Protestants work? Now , take a step back and look at how diverse their churches are. There’re even reformed reformed churches, be they Lutheran, Pentecostal, etc. The Spirit of God is of Unity & Truth, not Confusion and Disparity. One Body of Christ, not Bodies of Christ.

      I assume you’re Protestant now? Btw, I am pretty disappointed in your previous church but mine is very active. Every week we will have Scripture study and catechism class. Youth programs are also in place to renew their faith and deepen their knowledge in the Gospels.

  253. I am not protestant or catholic – I believe in the sacraments – I believe by reading scripture in the body and blood – I go to a catholic church
    and an evangelical church.
    I have looked at communion in the early church and it seems to be more like christians sitting round a table breaking bread and passing the cup of wine round with due solemnity and discernment of the body

    I believe that a simple person reading the bible with heart in the right place would be able to understand those verses necessary for salvation

    If one comes to a scripture they don’t understand there are commentaries and the preachers and teachers in the church. If someone wants to be deceived no amount of bible study or commentary study would change them – unless God grants
    grace.

    We are promised the Holy Spirit to teach us when we read the Bible.

    • Dear Charles,
      Of course anyone with a desire to seek God can sit down and read the Bible. But the thousands of Protestant denominations prove that the Holy Spirit does not guarantee unified interpretation of Scripture to every scripture reader. All can read and interpret for themselves. But they are not going to have infallible interpretation.

      When I was a Protestant I was sure that God was not a God of confusion and that He desired that we all be one and yet people of seeming zeal for God and good will came to opposing conclusions about what various scriptures meant. If the Protestant theory that the Holy Spirit will lead every single individual into ALL TRUTH was true, then all individuals should interpret the Scriptures the same….but they don’t. So, you either have to believe that anyone who interprets scripture differently than I do, since I know I am seeking Truth, must not actually have the Holy Spirit guiding them or else we have no idea who is right or else everyone is right. But this makes God a God of confusion…..oops!

      Or…the Protestant theory of the Holy Spirit’s promise of leading into all truth was not meant for every individual after all. And this is certainly a biblical possibility since Jesus was not speaking to the crowds when He promised this but to the twelve. Catholics believe that this promise was made to the disciples and their successors, thus to the magesterium of the Church. Therefore, we must read and interpret scripture in union with the faith of the Church.

      If an individual, as in Martin Luther, comes to conclusions in opposition to the Church, someone is wrong and it isn’t the Church since Jesus promised the Holy Spirit would lead into all truth.

    • Yes I agree with Pam. Christ only promised to the 12 Apostles, not the crowd. That shows that their teachings by oral OR written are correctly led by the Holy Spirit; which have been passed down throughout the ages with their respective successors. As supported in Book of Timothy, Paul appointed Timothy (should be 3rd generation in the office of the Church), taught him and also instructed him that whoever disagree with one another, bring them to the church as it is the pillar and foundation of truth. That shows that the interpretations of the scripture from the church since the days of the Appstles are absolutely true, not anyone in the crowd.

      Protestants also claim to be led by the Holy Spirit, but what really happened to them? The 3 spirits I have mentioned, which one actually led them? Spirit of God is only unites believers with truth, not segregation. So which are the possible spirits left?

  254. Thank you for your graciousness.
    You were saying that most protestant churches tacitly teach that salvation is dependant upon having correct knowledge. Of course that is not true but I do need information on how to get saved. It all comes down to knowing Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his suffering.
    Repentance and faith has always been the way to conversion for me, followed by walking in holiness.
    Is that the way you see it also if someone came to you for salvation?
    How did you feel about my study on John 6?

    • Dear Terry,
      You know you are right. Protestant churches don’t actually teach that salvation is by correct knowledge but many of us seem to come to that conclusion for a variety of reasons. Repentance and faith followed by walking in holiness is a wonderful way to go if one does not have Scripture or the Church…

      1 Peter 3:21 … baptism now saves you

      John 6:51 I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.”

      John 3:16 …whoever believes in Him will have eternal life.

  255. bfhu
    Without going into detail – throughout the ages millions of catholics have not had the truth – me for one due to my lack of bible study.

    You only have to study history to see that many catholics have been led into untruth by their lack of bible study – the good catholic websites
    will show you this.
    eg I could not imagine in my mind peter or paul bowing down to a statue of mary – Mary would not have let them. Peter would not let anyone bow to him on the earth – how much less would peter after he died expect someone to make a statue of him out of wood and kiss his foot.

    A christian will not know what repentance and faith and a holy life are
    without scripture. Fervent reading of good spiritual books and hearing the word of God preached – all however bible based might make up for bible study but only if it is bible based.

    • I do agree that without bible study is essential in knowing God and what Christian life should be. But the thing is, you cannot use your personal experience in your church (which I am really disappointed), to give an absolute conclusion on the whole of Catholic churches around the world. Mine is totally different from yours! And, You should understand that not every single Protestant knows or reads the Bible because they only know that God exists, saves and helps them in everything they do – thats all they think is necessary. Well, at least in my country (I am not from the US).

      Additionally, you cannot put all blame to the Church and you need to understand the underlying modern day reasons of this problem of lack of truth. For example, every human on earth knows that Food is essential and necessary for life. But is everyone on Earth getting sufficient food to live? You’ve to understand the situation of poverty in other countries and even in US, there are certainly poor people who cannot afford the Bible or have no time attend regular Catechism class to work full day to earn a living. Literacy abilities are also important and they need to be nurtured since young. Is everyone getting that? Financial power gets you a bible, literacy ability gives you the opportunity to read and comprehend with necessary analytical skills. But does everyone have them? There are certainly many Catholic welfare services that offer to resolve them, but are they are able to resolve all? All people from the world? There are even people from anti-Christian societies or secular societies that put their faiths as second or third priority. All these modern problems are certainly in the way of people to know the truth, be they Catholics, Protestants or other faiths. I do find that disappointing like you, but what we can do now is to try and reach out to them at least.

    • Dear Charles,
      I absolutely agree with you that Bible study is:

      2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;

      We do not “bow down to Mary” as in worship. We might kneel before a statue or picture, in prayer NOT WORSHIP, to ask for her intercessory prayer. Have you seen my post? Another Protestant Tradition: Catholics worship Idols.

  256. bfhu and spencer – the catholic church does have many splits but under one umbrella. eg take haiti for an example who have mixed truth
    with witchcraft – or medjugorje which has produced so much division.

    • Charles, the Lord forbade the creating graven images or likeness of anything from heaven, on earth and in the water & also forbade worshipping of statues – these 2 are stated very clearly in the commandment.

      However, Catholics use these statues for religious use; to commemorate their exemplary lives and God’s miracles worked in and through them. As a former Catholic, you should know that the Lord did not forbid the Religious use of the statues as in numerous parts in the bible, he instructed man to do it. For example – for the making of statues or scared icons – the Ark of the Covenant was crafted by Man and made with the finest materials according to God’s instructions. Next, David Solomon the plan “for the altar of incense made of refined gold, and its weight; also his plan for the golden chariot of the cherubim that spread their wings and covered the ark of the covenant of the Lord. All this he made clear by the writing of the hand of the Lord concerning it all, all the work to be done according to the plan” (1 Chr. 28:18–19). David’s plan for the temple, which the biblical author tells us was “by the writing of the hand of the Lord concerning it all,” included statues of angels. 

      For religious use: During a plague of serpents sent to punish the Israelites during the exodus, God told Moses to “make [a statue of] a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and every one who is bitten, when he sees it shall live. So Moses made a bronze serpent, and set it on a pole; and if a serpent bit any man, he would look at the bronze serpent and live” (Num. 21:8–9). Anyone who actually looks at the Golden serpent (When serpent usually depicts Satan) will actually live! Do you think it’s idolatry? Or wrong that may offend God? Well, God himself instructed that, so what less do Catholics have any reason to craft scared icons of Saints, as mentioned examplary lives, be honored? Not like we look at these icons we will be saved, but they act as reminders. Like the modern-day printed Bibles, they are made of modern paper and printed with ink. However, they serve as a platform for you to know God through these God-inspired words. It is not the literal God but it allows you to get closer to him. Additionally, Protestants even pray with or in front of the Bible – are they worshipping the paper and ink that make up the modern day bible?

      Anyway, I do read the monthly messages from Medjugorje. It is clear that it is not approved by the Catholic church because the continuous monthly apparitions with no exact purpose do rouse suspicion. But there are certainly Catholics who are neutral. Since the messages encourage us to go and open our hearts to Christ & our Father, it doesn’t go against God’s will. Let’s say it’s by man, take the messages as common messages from European Catholic Evangelists, I don’t think it’s very difficult to do that.

      Next the kissing of Peter’s foot, especially in St. Peter’s basilica, is a traditional form of displaying affection or honour. Kissing is not reserved to divine worship and can legitimately offered to creatures without committing a sin, if done with the right intention. If the person doing the kissing intends it as an expression of divine worship and he offers it to a creature, (as was probably the case of the pagan Cornelius) then he commits the sin of idolatry. If the person doing the kissing intends it merely as an expression of respect, affection, submission, etc; for a fellow creature, then it is not a sin. It is the same as Boeing to a King, without intending to worship the King as God but to respect him and his earth powers.

    • Dear Charles,

      Our Enemy is constantly at work to cause division. The apostles promised us this. But the Faith is ONE. Division is not advocated, encouraged or practiced as a virtue. It is true of course that there are heretics in the Catholic Church. There have always been heretics and always will be. But neither Hati nor Medjugorje have caused any division that I am aware of. It will all get settled over time…maybe not in our lifetime. But in the meantime, I can KNOW what the Catholic Faith is by reading the Catechism. Unlike the divisions and conflicting interpretations and doctrines of Protestantism, where I become my own pope, I can know what is authentic Christianity.

      The existence of heretics, sin, uninformed Catholics, led-astray-Catholics or any other failing of Catholic people does not prove in any way the error of the Catholic Faith. It only proves the weakness of humanity and the strength and persistence of Our Enemy.

      If you were to take all of Protestantism for the past 500 years and compare it to all of Catholicism you would find just as much of the above human failings. But what Protestants tend to do is compare their own one church fellowship or a few others they have known, for the period of their own lifetime and contrast it to all of Catholicism around the globe for 2000 years. Is that a fair comparison?

      First you have 4 times as many years. So one could expect 4 times as many failings in Catholicism. But then there were 1,180,000,000 Catholics three years ago, but increases by 15,000,000 per year. A Protestant church, even a megachurch is dwarfed by comparison. So, which Church will yield the most failing members?

  257. You’re right. Baptism is definitely important (Acts 2:38), but you haven’t commented on my study about John 6.
    We’re selling our house and we have developed a friendship with one of the potential buyers (Allan). When he came over to look at the house the first time, I led him to Christ. Today I’ll call and schedule a time for baptism.
    It seems that the Catholic church (like the Church of Christ who teach in belief and knowledge with baptism symbolizing putting the ring on the finger like marriage) emphasizes process then event, whereas the protestants emphasize the event first (like Allan) and then the process of learning about the church, body life, and ministry.
    Remember I’m an evangelist so I’m always going for the jugular first.
    Your last response to Charles was excellent. You were saying to look to the faith and not to the abuse of it.

  258. Many of the recent marian visions have definitely caused divisions if you look on the catholic websites. The great apostasy mentioned by paul has probably started so many will be lost to the delusion that God
    said he would send – through the devil I presume.

    • A way to tell is to judge by its fruits. Marian apparitions are rigorously examined and testified for some time by the Church before they are declared as miracles.

      There was once a guy had a conversation with ‘Mary’ and he was told that She is the Only Hope to mankind. In the end, the vision was declared as unauthentic & satanic to many; because everyone believes that Christ is the only Hope. However, there’s this video on YouTube, showing a visual apparition of Mary at the top of the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox church. I’ve watched it and find it miraculous. Instead of people treating Mary as God, they worshipped, thanked and adored almighty God for being so merciful and great to allow her to appear to us. God becomes the main source and focus of the Faith through the Marian apparition, instead of only Mary.

  259. My wife and I went to Las Vegas over the weekend and encountered our first instance of human trafficking. It was the oppression of illegal aliens who have lived here since they were kids. A lady was being forced to hand out sex-show tickets. Please pray for Nana, a christian who is trapped.
    The sermon at church that Sunday was on the prodigal son. He also quoted 1 Peter 1 where it talks about having an inheritance reserved in heaven for us.

  260. A few years back I started visiting every church in my area both Catholic and Protestant and asked if we could join forces. The response was great. As a matter of fact, I started attending the Sacramental meetings and was preaching door-to-door with the Baptists and Seventh-Day Adventists.
    Has anyone ever tried anything similar?

  261. Its Cathololics that wouldnt be seen With Prodtesttants

  262. Why is that?

  263. Why wouldn’t SDA’s and Baptists go door to door with Catholics?

    • Baptist churches may vary but in general they believe that the Catholic Church is pagan. SDA believe the Catholic Church is the Whore of Babylon. If they were to agree to join Catholics in this sort of evangelism, they would want to convince the Catholics that their Church and beliefs are pagan/blasphemous/in error etc.

      Virulence would vary depending upon the individuals and the teaching they actually receive in their respective churches.

  264. Do you think that the majority of Protestant churches belive that the Catholic Church is pagan? I know that the SDA’s believe that. Sunday worship is the mark of the beast.

    • Most Protestant Churches think the Catholic Church is so wrong that if any Catholic is saved it is due to their sincerity and personal love of God. But again, every individual in Protestant Churches will have vrious opinions based on their own thinking and history.

  265. The catholic church’s biggest problem is that millions of them never study the bible or do meaningful prayer which is necessary for salvation

    • Again, I see another sweeping statement.

      • Well I have been in the catholic church for 27 years and lack of Bible study was evident .

      • So am I right to say that you’ve visited Catholic Churches around the world? Visited and examined thoroughly the faithfuls from Most of the Churches in Europe, most of the Churches in Africa, most Churches in South America, most Churches in Asia? By the way, I’m from a small country in South East Asia that holds a growing percentage of Catholics. Do you know what and how much the faithfuls know about the bible?

        You should know that one person’s opinion/experience is not enough to account for everyone or the majority. Besides, not knowing the bible now doesn’t mean that they will not know it later; unless you have the power to examine all the faithfuls (you have encountered before) everyday. You may even have inspired some of them to do bible study!

        • No – all my experience was in Scotland – and I married into an Italian catholic family – they went to church once a week but regular bible study was never done – Bibles just seemed to gather dust on a shelf.

        • Precisely. Have you returned there to Scotland to examine them regularly?
          Regarding your church, I already expressed pity that its not active in bible study. I understand Catholics may have the tendency to solely rely on Church teachings and neglect private reading of Scripture, but that doesn’t mean all churches and faithfuls around the world are like that. In my country, I’ve a number of Catholic friends who study the bible regularly (when I’m with them) because their churches encourage them to do so within their parishes’ Neighbourhood Christian Communities.

  266. I bet to differ. When did “study(ing) the bible” and “meaningful prayer” become a condition for salvation? In fact, the people who claim the above will definitely be judged more severely since “much is given, more will be expected.” Many, many Christians simply live the gospel in their lives. Book knowledge of the bible and loud, long showy prayers ALONE are NOT going to save anyone, I am afraid.

  267. Who said anything about loud showy prayers . You must be better than the apostles , disciples and even Jesus who used scripture to defeat the devil’s temptations. The whole Bible tells you that we must have the sword of the spirit ( the Word of God – bible )to defeat the devil. Without the Bible and Prayer we are defenceless against the devil. You have just demeaned the twin towers to heave. How can you live the gospel if you dont read or hear its requirements ???
    How would a tradesman know what to do without a manual – the bible
    contains all we need for salvation. The church is based on the Bible not the other way round

  268. The early church met every day in the temple and in peoples homes so I concluded that God changed the day of worship to every day.
    “Today” we rest by faith in him (Hebrews 4).
    I would love to go out sharing with Catholics. Does anyone know of any churches that would be willing?

  269. @ C Allan: Then I beg the question what makes you think that a Catholic’s “less expressive” style of praying equates “less meaningful” for you to judge the internal spiritual state of a person? I use the bible when I need to but not to prove my “superiority” than other Christians. You’re a very deceived person if you think that the book knowledge of the bible is salvation. I will bet you with anything that a simple illiterate jungle man practising his Christian virtues in his daily life is more righteous than a well educated man with a library of bibles and commentaries but who does not live the gospel in his daily life. My problem is your judgmental attitude toward other Christians. Even the Devil quote scriptures ….

  270. @surkiko “I use the bible when I need to but not to prove my “superiority” than other Christians. ”
    The Bible should only be use To prove the superiority of Jesus , The word made flesh. Im equal to all my Catholic brothers and sister.

  271. You are putting words into my mouth – who said anything about superiority – the apostles used scripture all the time and prayed at all times. – they did not act in a superior fashion.

    • Of course you did. You said that Catholics “never study the bible or do meaningful prayer which is necessary for salvation.” You meant well but your theology is pretty bad. All the bible study and praying are mere “works” if they are an end to themselves. They alone will not save us if we bear no good fruits and our hearts remain evil. “Preach the Gospel at all times. When necessary, use words” or that it is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.

      • I never said they are an end in themselves – but the word of God is LIVING and active and has the power to change a person into producing good fruits – the bible is not a dead letter and will have an effect – that is promised by God.

  272. 2 Timothey 3.15
    and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to MAKE you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

    • Gain the vital knowledge of the Sacred Scripture through the Church, not from your own interpretation. Yes, essentiality of owning and reading the Scripture by yourself is one thing but deeming your own interpretation as fit from the Scripture is another.
      Besides, reading/studying the bible without knowing its contexts, linguistic commands and the original text is not the way. Especially when one is poor & illiterate, new to the bible or having limited knowledge of it – in the era where poverty still roams around the world.

    • No one is disagreeing with you about the edification of scripture reading. It’s your acquired bad habit of proof reading a particular verse to the exclusion of the rest of scripture. You need to be firmly grounded (in your Catholicism) before you get mixed up with Protestants and their bad theologies. When you quoted 2 Tim 3:15, you are trying to prove too much when you interpret “make you wise” to mean “necessary” for salvation. It is called

  273. .. just don’t go beyond what’s written. Catholics are much faithful to the bible than you think!

  274. 1 John 22:7.
    You can gain knowledge of the Bible through the church – IF the church does bible study – but you can also gain knowledge by reading from the bible. You are misusing what peter meant about interpretation – we are commanded to read the word of God from childhood. Who is saying I exclude the rest of scripture when I give you a verse.

    But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you, so you don’t need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you everything you need to know, and what he teaches is true–it is not a lie. So just as he has taught you, remain in fellowship with Christ.

    Deuteronomy 6:4-9, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Then Luke’s account of the Berean converts in Acts 17:11, “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”
    There were many churches for 300 years before the Roman church .
    The philadelphian church was the most commended by Jesus – so each church was obviously different.

    • Dear Charles,

      Do you think a person can be saved ONLY by reading Scripture?

      Do you think that Lydia personally read scripture?

      Do you think that the Bereans studied their own personal scriptures at home?

      If the scriptures are able to make one wise unto salvation, do you think that one must personally read the scriptures in order to be saved?

      Do you think that a person who is unable to read cannot be saved?

      Did you know that the Catholic Church was called the Catholic Church in 100 AD?

      Did you know that Rome became headquarters b/c both Peter and Paul died there?

      Did you know that using the epithet “Roman Church’ was invented in England as a slur against a foreign church by the Anglicans?

      Do you understand that Catholics venerate the Holy Scriptures, we read them at every mass, many Catholic read scripture on their own but we reject the Protestant tradition of men, sola scriptura?

      Do you understand the difference between lax Catholics, lax priests, lax bishops even, and the TEACHINGS OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH?

      Do you understand that we as Catholics accept and love all the scriptures that you have quoted, but that none of them command personal reading and Bible study for salvation?

  275. Dear Charles,

    I see you are sola scriptura man.
    Here is an interesting link:

    http://principiumunitatis.blogspot.nl/2008/07/michael-brown-on-sola-scriptura-or.html

  276. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all folks
    you actually recognise what you are speaking approximately!
    Bookmarked. Please also discuss with my site =). We will have a hyperlink alternate agreement between us

  277. I would love to go out witnessing with Catholics. Does anyone have any info on where we can hook up. I live in Inglewood CA.

    • Dear Terry,
      You could just call a local Catholic Church. Maybe Knights of Columbus or people in Bible studies. But as with Protestants few people feel comfortable just going door to door cold turkey. And you have the added stigma that that is what Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons do…let us know if you are successful.

  278. As a matter of fact, I would love to go witnessing with anybody.

  279. I’m always successful becaude people are seeking truth and it’s okay to preach the word, even cold turkey. When they open the door I say I’m here to share the gospel which requires faith and repentance in Christ. People respond very well. Of course, I also invite them to church and ask for prayer requests.
    If we don’t get to them, the cults will.
    I would love to take new believers out and disciple them at the same time. If you know anybody in the church that desires to share the gospel please have them call me at 310 215-3721.
    I can also teach people effective evangelism based on the book, “Sharing Jesus Without Fear.” We have several copies and if anyone would like one I can certainly provide one free.

    • I will love to join you anytime (but I’m in Northern California), Terry. Although I don’t go door-to-door, I do use any opportunity to share the gospel with anyone, anytime and everyday. We need to shake good Christian people out of their complacency because there’s always an urgency to bring and deliver the gospel message. I will pray for your ministry.

  280. Thank you very much.

  281. I just posted my personal copy of Voters Guide on my FB. The coming Presidential election in the US is very important for Christians. If interested, goto: http://facebook.com/surkiko. Anyone who wants to connect with me can send me a message.

    • I’m not from the US, but from a small country in South East Asia. Last time I had chanced upon an article (from TIME magazine), concerning the presidential election with the American Catholics, but I didn’t manage to read it. May I know what is it about? I believe it will be useful for my academics since I’m still schooling.

  282. @ Spencer: The US is becoming secularized like the rest of the world. The incumbent Administration is radical leftist. A standing executive mandate (HHS) is forcing all employers to provide free artificial contraception, sterilization and abortifacient pills for employees under their health plans. A severe crippling fine is assessed for non-compliance. The Obama regime has doggedly refused to exempt religious bodies with objections from the requirement. The mandate is perceived to be an affront to the right of religious freedom protected under the First Amendment of the US Constitutions. For Catholics, it is a direct assault against the core of their faith. The HHS mandate demands that Catholics violate their conscience and compromise their deeply-held beliefs. Catholic hospitals, universities, parochial schools and social service groups will be forced to close unless the mandate is overturn. This November presidential election is thus crucial for a change in government and also to reverse the “culture of death” which has permeated American society.

    • Oh my, what are the core objectives of Obama’s regime? It does seem to be a deliberate regime (not allowing to exempt catholic and pro-life bodies) against the 51% Catholics of US population – at least from a third party. This doesn’t seem like any social equality in the incumbent. Would you mind explaining which side the Catholics are going to take on? Rit Romney or still Obama?

      FYI: In my country (Singapore), with my limited knowledge the local healthcare organisations do explain the use of artificial contraception, pills, etc, but not as much as compared to that of the use of condoms. This move is mainly to educate the current generation of the risks of getting STDs through unprotected sex. However, the most emphasized method is to Abstain. So there isn’t much of an issue here in my country as there is no enforcement on such private stuff.

  283. @ Spenser: The Obama regime is in the camp of radical left socialism including an ideology that government can dictate and control private conscience and religious beliefs, force egalitarian patterns of income and wealth redistribution, and foster a life-style bias for homosexuality. It is thus hostile toward traditional institutions, especially Christianity. Unfortunately, many “liberal” Catholics are disobedient and do not align themselves with the clear teachings of Christ and his Church. Others are simply ignorant and ill-informed, being propagandized by a secular mainstream news media (all major TV networks except Fox News, “Time”, “Newsweek”, New York Times) which is consistently slanted toward Obama by refusing to provide a balanced and accurate reporting of the disastrous and failed economic and foreign policies of the current Administration. The Church is not partisan but does try to encourage all of us to exercise our voting rights in a responsible manner. Thus the guidelines for the five non-negotiable which clarify the voting issues for Catholics.

    As a side note, it is quite sad how our Protestant brethren cannot agree among themselves because of the lack of a shepherd voice like the Church Magisterium. In a time when there is a virulent hostility toward Christianity, we are reminded of how a united Christendom rallying around the Pope was able to gather the Holy League fleet of Christian alliance to defeat the Ottoman Turks at Lepanto (AD1565) and thus saving Christian Europe.

  284. @ surkiko “wealth redistribution” Any Tax or taiff is a form of redistribution , trust me the Catholic Church did it for years. Nobody knows better how to redistribute weatlth from the lower classes and make themselfs wealthy than the Roman Catholic church FACT. Rome was all about Taxes. The Catholic Church made its Weath on taking from Common folk , that you cannot dispute. Clergy abuses were a big part of the reformation split , But I guess you have your own made up story why the reformers broke off from the Catholic Church.

    Second The Venetian War (1570–1573) was a short lived victory , The Turks had more resouses and Venice had to make a seprate peace treaty giving up Cypus. I wouldnt use that as an example or any of the cursades either.

    • Dear Robocop,

      Here is the story of someone who also fought the Church.

      http://www.calledtocommunion.com/

    • @ roboman40: We are actually talking seriously about wealth redistribution Obama’s way of expansive federal free entitlement programs with waiver for new job training or looking for job requirement. But you seem fixated on retelling urban legends and folklore. What did Mother Church ever do to you to make you such a miserable person?

  285. It proves nothing , One story , There is always an exception.
    And please dont call me robocop. I will not worship a man, My house will serve the Lord. (Not the pope or a building )
    Lieing is a sin btw. Catholics murdered a lost of Jews on the way to the Holy Lands in those days Anther Fact thay you cant dispute.

    • You seem not to know the history of some of your Protestant churches. E.g read up on the reasons why IRA was formed in Northern Ireland.

    • Dear Roboman,

      Sorry, but what is striking that your vocabulary is always negative and full of anger towards the catholic church.
      You wrote: “I will not worschip a man, My house will serve the Lord”.
      Your statement applies also to catholics. What do you mean with “worship a man”, you mean the pope? Let me tell this, by giving the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven” to Peter, Jesus gives Peter authority, dignaty an office. Not to the other apostles but to Peter.
      History shows you that this authority, this dignaty and this office has been passed to his successors through the ages until this very day.
      Yes, there will always be an exception, but in America, God`s own country, in my opion there is an exodus going on of Protestant pastors and leaders to be in full communion with the catholic church.

  286. I’m not denying our Protestant history it probably as bloody, Protestant can be attribute to the genocide of the North Americans, as the Catholic was in Latin America. But I’m not denying it. I’m not creating propaganda to shift blame. My ancestors were responsible for those tragedies. As a descendant I must never forget and never to change History in my favor.

    • Dear Roboman,

      That is the right position, but no one will put the blame on you.

      Yes, changing history in one`s favor is history distortion.

      • Everything you listed here is nothing but propaganda form the FOX propaganda machine. I don’t trust Mitt Romney. While he saying one thing to make people like you feel good, he’s steeling you retirement account, how do you think he makes his wealth. The man has never worked an honest day in his life. I also disagree with him morally Its simply un -Christ like. He Hides his tax info even George W. didn’t do that. Than man has major character issues. Obama was a Member Congressional Church of Christ for over 25 years. He is no Muslim.
        Next I don’t trust the current congress BTW all republicans, they sold out the American people , making their top priority to make sure Obama is a one term President , THEY DID EVEN SIGN A JOB BILL. THEN BLAME THE PEOPLE WHO LOST THERE JOBS OVER REPUBLICAIN POLICY AND BLAME THE PEOPLE> WHILE STOCK BROKERS AND PROPEDITARY LENDERS SUCK THE WEALTH OF THE MIDDLE CLASS> REDITRIBUTATION IT SEEMS LIKE THE WEALTH OF THE MIDDLE CLASS WENT TO BAIL OUT THE STOCK BROKERS AND WEALTHY BAKERS>
        Mitt Romney is a wolf in sheep’s clothing and you are being fooled.
        Mitt Romney fits the description of the anti-Christ more than Obama, because Romney is and will deceive many including Israel. Obama is no friend to Israel.

        Mitt belives hes a God ?
        Can you as a Catholic just someone who Claims to be a God?

        • @ roboman40: You’ve to examine the five non-negotiables yourself. Basically, there are some things which are so intrinsically evil that a Christian has to weight them against economic and other mundane policies. For instance, abortion and euthanasia are direct killing (murder) which can never be justified over economic prosperity, etc. That’s why as Christians, we are asked to vote with an informed conscience so we can serve God and not Mammon. Between Romney and Obama, the choice is clear. Whether Obama is a (Protestant and non- church attending Christian, or a Muslim in disguise) believer is not represented by his actions. Romney may be a Mormon but has demonstrated that his moral beliefs are more aligned with Catholicism and historic Christian faith. This is not an election about someone’s religious belief, but is about what direction an American President is leaning and leading the country. Let’s God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven so we will not be shamed on Judgment Day (See Matt 7:21).

  287. “direct killing (murder) which can never be justified over economic prosperity”

    Catholic Church did this for many ages they called it the Cursades
    MMM Irac in most recent years a War for Oil. MM I think you have drowned in your own hpyocripism and the blood of childern in Irac. So the Only Justified murder is one condoned by the Pope,

  288. The Catholic Church invented abortion , all those pergent Nuns Forced to discharge thier babys or barried alive under the cathdrals of Eroupe how many pergneat corpses did they find?, the The Catholic Church the moral standand of the world.

  289. @ roboman40: I really thought that you can be reasonable. But you have really gone off the deep end. You ARE the reason why Protestantism is such a tragedy … Take good care of yourself.

  290. The Truth will set you Free.
    It hurts I know .
    Repent for the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand!

  291. Very interesting story. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  292. You know I read some where in the bible that your prayers must be original prayers to God and not of man made prayers. Also I heard that the Catholic faith call these statues that they have in their churches saints when I know God only declares who are saints and not man. Also I hear our priest calling the pope his holiness. I believe that God is holy. I to am not a believer of going into the confession box with priest and confessing my sins. Because I read in the bible of the new testament of Jesus saying you only confess to your God and alone. I love discussing about the bible and love hearing the scriptures and lectures being said. I do however disagree the Catholic churches saying during mass on which is of human prayers man made, ” we believe in one Holy Catholic Church. My believe is God’s church is our heart and soul not the Catholic Church and for it to be called holy. Other Catholic believers believe the priest to bless things. Why is that when I believe that God does the blessings.

    • First of all, would you mind making a distinction between ‘original’ & ‘man-made’?

      Second, God calls his people saints (which means Holy Ones). According to Gospel of Matthew, Jesus gave authority to Peter (Kephas), whom he shall build his church on and gates of hell will never prevail against it. Whatever he binds on earth shall bind in heaven; whatever he looses on earth shall loose in heaven. So, the Church has the authority (given by The Lord) to also rigorously examine and then canonize people who had led exemplary Christian lives to be saints on Earth. These saints are models for us to follow – in living a Christian life for God. In addition, statues are made to easily remind us visually & psychologically (there is scientific proof to this) just like how photographs work.

      Next, ‘His Holiness’ is just a title to honor the authority succeeded from Peter given by The Lord. It’s like a title to honor the Pope, just like how Britishs honor the Queen of England as ‘Her Majesty’ or ‘Her highness'; when all power, glory, majesty and honor belongs to God. In addition, Angels and Saints are Holy too according to the Bible.

      Third, Jesus told his Apostles that whoever they forgive shall be forgiven; whoever they retain shall retain. This is another authority given by Jesus to his beloved apostles in the upper room. Priests are like administers of God’s forgiveness on Earth. yes He does the forgiving and the priests does the administering – just like how medicine/drugs cure your sickness but they are administered by doctors or pharmacists.

      Fourth, we believe in one holy apostolic Catholic Church, ONE body of Christ. Since Christ is the head, the church is the body. But till this day, Christians fight over what is right&wrong and attempt to claim that they hold the Truth. There is no unity within this modern-day Body of Christ. Have you ever wondered what would happen if your body cells, organs or tissues do not agree with one another? Imagine the small intestine refusing to allow digested food to enter from the stomach? The repair cells refusing to correct spontaneous mutations within other cells? Yeah, diseases will arise and the body will rot. Do you think this is how a body of Christ should be?

      Lastly, the Priest (contracted word from latin word for presbyter if I’m not wrong) is the earthly vicar of Christ in the church, who administers blessings from Christ himself.

    • Daniel,
      There is nothing in the Bible that forbids man made prayers. How could there be? We are all “men” and therefore all of our prayers are man-made. There is nothing either in the Bible that we are not allowed to pray unless our prayer is original. Jesus prayed the SAME prayer three times in the Garden.

      What scripture says that we may only confess to God alone? I don’t know of any. The priest blesses but it is the power of God that bestows the actual blessing. The priest has no power in himself. It is all the power of God.

  293. You make excellent points with your analogy about the human body.
    How does the Catholic Church operate in the five-fold ministry of Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor, and Teacher in Ephesians 4? Does the church recognize them?

    • Dear Terry,

      There is a scripture that might be older than some books of the New Testament (e.g. John’s Gospel and the pastoral letters): the Didache. Here we find a valuable indication, that our understanding in which Paul is not entirely clear, sets in a bright light.

      The Didache, mentions bishops, presbyters and deacons alongside prophets, evangelists and teachers. The latter seem to be, like the apostles, traveling functionaries. They have the task of preaching.

      At the end of the first century when the Church became more settled , the bishop, as leader in a particular community, takes over this task. By that time presbyters (priests) and deacons take care for the practical matters: gifts and alms, but also for ministry of the liturgy.

      • Hoc est – The didache is good – but why would it precede the new testament – all the NT letters were in circulation when they were written- being read out in all the churches and copied by hand – do you
        think Christians would wait 400 yrs to read paul’s letters? or the gospels for that matter – the gospels were written after the Crucifixion
        and preached or copied and handed out.

  294. I’m also asking for an answer to the study I did on John chapter 6 regarding eating His body and drinking His blood. So far no one has responded to my comments of September 8, 2012. This is the fourth time I’ve asked and it’s the only question of mine that has not been addressed. Would someone please tell me what they think of my view?

    • The Gospel of John Chapter 6 contains the miracle of the loaves and fishes. Jesus feeds over 5,000 people with bread and fish but offers them something far more valuable – The Bread of Life.

      Many times in life we seek the wrong bread, the physical bread that sustains our physical lives – a life that ends, when we should seek a life that never ends with the Bread of Life. We need to seek Jesus Christ who is the Bread of Life who gives us eternal life by the sacrifice of himself for us.

    • http://everythingcatholic.wordpress.com/2012/06/07/eat-my-body-john-6-why-jesus-was-being-literal/

      A young Australian Catholic guy wrote a blog post on that. Hope you would gain something from it, besides, you can ask him any questions :)

    • Terry,
      I responded that I disagreed back on the 11th. Your study on Jn 6 regarding eating of the bread equating to belief is a standard Protestant work around for the literal meaning of the words Jesus says.

      John 6:51 Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.
      53 So Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you. 54 But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day. 55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. 56 Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57 I live because of the living Father who sent me; in the same way, anyone who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 I am the true bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will not die as your ancestors did (even though they ate the manna) but will live forever.”

      The people who listened to Jesus IN THE CONTEXT of the actual event KNEW He was speaking literally. That is why they left.

      Jn 6:52 Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, “How can this man give us His flesh to eat?” …
      60 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, “This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it?” 61 But Jesus, conscious that His disciples grumbled at this, said to them, “Does this cause you to stumble? …
      66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore.

      Why would Jesus let them leave if they merely misunderstood what He meant?

      Protestants interpretations sprung up a mere 500 years ago. While Catholic interpretation has been the same since the birth of the Church.

      Early Church Beliefs In the Eucharist

      Bread From Heaven is Symbolic

  295. I’m sorry. I didn’t know that was your response to my question since it was three days later. But thanks.

  296. Regarding your question of why would Jesus let them leave if they misunderstood what they meant, I have no response.
    Do the Catholics believe in the speaking of tongues? If not, if someone came into the average Catholic congregation speaking in other languages, would they be discouraged from doing it?

    • Dear Terry,
      Yes we have charismatic Catholics who speak in tongues. But it would not be acceptable for someone to come into mass and just interrupt by speaking in tongues. We do have charismatic masses where there is speaking in tongues. I have been involved in these groups but it is not particularly appealing to me so I don’t seek it out.

  297. Answer:
    The statement is found in a discourse recorded in John 6. In the context, Jesus had feed over 5,000 people miraculously and this created a crowd of people wanting Jesus to repeat this miracle. “Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.”” (John 6:26-27). This did not detour the people. As the conversation continues they attempt at every turn to argue that Jesus should provide them with free food.

    In response, Jesus answers that they are looking for the wrong thing. They are only looking for physical food which will temporarily fill their stomachs. They should be looking for spiritual food which will give them eternal life. “Then they said to Him, “Lord, give us this bread always.” And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. … And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day”” (John 6:34-36, 40). Notice how partaking of bread Jesus is offering is equated to believing in him.

    Jesus stated, “”I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?” Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the bread which came down from heaven–not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever.”” (John 6:51-58). The theme hasn’t changed. The bread is Jesus’ sacrifice for the sins of the world. Unless a person “partakes” through faith in Jesus’ death, he cannot have eternal life.

    Likewise another allusion is being made to something else that memorializes Jesus’ death for our sins. “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread” (I Corinthians 10:16-17). As Christians partake of the Lord’s Supper, we share in the sacrifice of our Lord and pay tribute to him by recalling his death. “For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes” (I Corinthians 11:23-26). Like baptism, the power of the Lord’s Supper comes in what it symbolizes to the Christian. Baptism is not a physical death, but a representation of spiritual death to sin. The Lord’s Supper is not a physical eating of Christ, but a symbolic memorial to keep fresh in the Christian’s mind that he is saved because his King gave his life to free him from sin. It reminds us that we have willingly entered into a covenant relationship with Christ to do his will and not our own.

    So to answer your question, the flesh and blood represent Jesus’ death upon the cross for the sins of mankind.

    • Dear Daniel,

      Amen, hallelujah, nice Protestant exegesis, however it is not in accordance with the belief of the Church of the ages.

      Btw you have a beautiful Christian name.

      • Thank you for that hoc_est. All I was trying to explain what Jesus was saying was a warning to us all. If you believe and acknowledge that he is the savior and that he died on the cross for our sins (symbolizes the bread), then he shed his blood to wash away (symbolizing the wine.) I believe he spoke in parables to the people but yet he mentions, “If you believe in these things you then can into enter the kingdom of my father. I take this to heart everyday when I pray. Thanking him for every new day and for dying on the cross for my sins. As far as the renewal bondage between you and Jesus that the Catholic talk about, the renewal and bondage or relationship between you and Jesus is done everyday you awake and not every Sunday.

        • Dear Daniel,

          You wrote:
          “the renewal and bondage or relationship between you and Jesus is done everyday you awake and not every Sunday.”

          That`s what the Catholic Church beliefs.

    • Dear Daniel,
      The Catholic Church does not teach that salvation is by Communion Alone. Therefore, faith in Christ is foundational for salvation.

      The Protestant attempt to understand “eating the flesh and drinking the blood of Jesus” as meaning only to have faith in Him is pure interpretation based on NOTHING contextual. Many of Jesus’ followers left Him after this discourse because they did not like what He was saying. And most Protestants do NOT like what He is saying here either; so they attempt to interpret away the plain meaning of the text. But notice how Eternal Life is linked very strongly, and many times with eating the flesh and drinking the blood of Jesus.

      John 6:51-58 I am the living bread which came down from heaven.
      If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give

      is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying,

      “How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?” Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you,

      unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.

      Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For

      My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.

      He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so

      he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the bread which came down from heaven–not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead.

      He who eats this bread will live forever.”

      Please take a look at the following post to see why neither Jesus nor St. Paul could possibly have been speaking symbolically.

      Bread From Heaven is Symbolic

      Early Church Beliefs In the Eucharist

    • Dear Daniel,
      From what I had learnt, ‘eating flesh & drinking blood’ already has a symbolic meaning, which means to harm, hurt or persecute someone – according to many other verses or parables from the Scripture. So, it will be absurd to be symbolic to ‘persecute’ Jesus as the Bread of Life in order to inherit his kingdom.

      Next, Jesus repeated himself for so many times without ‘correcting’ himself. More people left because they knew cannibalism was prohibited. Since Jesus fulfills the Old Testament, people find him absurd and hard to believe. But, Jesus didn’t preach cannibalism since he did not cut his arm off and ask his apostles to eat it. Okay, how do I put this? Erm. It’s more of telling us to literally ‘eat’ him as spiritual food – since it does have an effect on our lives (gaining eternal life) as promised. Catholics participate (accoroding to Paul) continuously in His one and only sacrifice at the Cross, where he offered his body and blood as communion for us.

  298. Dear Spencer,
    Thanks for the information. I do understand what Jesus meant about when we eat his flesh and drink his blood. I believe in his words what he said on his last supper.

    “And he took bread, and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ And likewise the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.’ ” (Luke 22:19-20).

    Thanks again. I can’t really explain but I know I have spiritual bonding with Jesus.

  299. That’s true Spencer. It is everyday. This is why I don’t believe how the Catholics will call it the holy bread and why we have to line up to receive the Eucharist and such. To me the Church of God exists in my heart. But I still don’t understand this, what gives the Catholics the rights to name a person saint when God is the only authority figure do name any one saint. I’d like to call myself a born again christian and again it happens every new day. Thanks Spencer.

    • I do have to commend on your politeness, which shows that you’re a nice person :)

      Back to the topic.
      Catholics call it the Holy Bread because Christ called himself the Bread of Life. The bread becomes the Body of Christ as One, with his blood, soul and divinity since he conquered and rose from the grave. His tomb was empty without any trace and Jesus went to meet his disciples like he never died. Since its indeed the Body of God the Son, it is indeed Holy.

      Next, I don’t believe it’s wrong to line up for the Eucharist. There’s a need for order within the Church or else it may be chaotic; with people rushing to obtain the Body of Christ or even quarrel. The lining up is to keep everything in order for the procession to be swift.

      Lastly, you have to believe in the authority of the Church. You can read it on http://everythingcatholic.wordpress.com/2012/05/20/which-church-was-founded-by-christ-scriptural-evidence/#more-37 for more information that I shall not elaborate here.

      But, you may wonder how the Church knows that this alleged Saint is in heaven before God? He/she maybe in Hell! First of all, you have to understand the Catholic traditional doctrine on the intercession of Saints. According to the Book of Revelations, martyrs cried out before God asking him when their deaths shall be avenged. That shows Saints are allowed and shown to be crying out to God for his mercy and help. Next, the elders present the prayers of saints to God. The Church believes that all believers are Saints in the eyes of God. Even when you die mortally, you’re still alive in Christ. God is of the Living and not of the Dead and since we gain eternal life, we are alive in God. That’s why Catholics ask Saints to intercede with Christ the Judge for all since praying for one another is pleasing to God. Additionally, if the Saints themselves can’t hear the prayers of earthly saints, how could they possibly offer the prayers of Saints to God in Heaven?

      From there, the Church only canonize her alleged Saints who ‘performed a miracle’ on someone who had previously asked him/her to intercede with Christ our God. It is one of the key ‘requirements’ other than their fulfilling Christian lives and deeds. The Church then rigorously examines and analyses for a period of time before decision is made under the Christ-given authority of the Church.

      A side note: Divination is definitely NOT asking Saints for intercession in Heaven because divination involves unscriptural ritual that attempts to SUMMON spirits to talk to us on Earth. This is reflected in Book of Samuel. That’s why the Scripture tells us not to follow it as these spirits summoned are unclean.

      Thank you for allowing me to explain with my limited knowledge :)

  300. Hi Daniel
    I’m responding to your statement of October 14. It was a good exegesis of John 6. Eating and drinking is mentioned eight times but the word believe is mentioned nine times.
    Have you the read the posts about symbolism and the Eucharist?

    • Dear Terry,
      Why emphasizing the word “believe” but eliminating the sacramental aspect?

    • Dear Terry,
      Of course believing in Christ is a requirement for eternal life for Christians. But the Catholic Faith makes sense of the whole passage better than the Protestant interpretation. We accept everything Jesus said. Whereas Protestants must ignore 1/2 of the the things Jesus said just in this passage in order to hold to their doctrine.

  301. Hey Terry,

    Thank you for this response. I’ve always believed that as long as I believe that we’ve all died in our sins and that with Christ dying on the cross so we won’t die in our sins and that the shedding of his blood will wash away our sins and believing that he is our savior so that we won’t fall short of coming into the kingdom. This I do consider is the holy Eucharist and total bonding with Christ. Not the lining up and literally eating of the Eucharist and drinking of the wine. This morning during mass and I hear this all the time because I refuse to pray it every time the priest leads the prayer about the saying, “we believe in the holy catholic church,” to me to God be the glory and he be the holy one. I don’t recall in the bible that God named only one religion as being holy.

  302. Dear hoc_est
    Good question. In John 6:27 Jesus says “Do not work for food that spoils but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.”
    When asked what were those works Jesus said, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.
    A question would be: How do we receive forgiveness of sins or how do we get righteousness imputed to our account?
    The first example is Abram in Genesis 15:6. It said he “believed the Lord, and he credited to him as righteousness.”

  303. Hello Daniel
    I was surprised to learn that you attend the Catholic Church. Why do you go there if you don’t believe their teachings?

    • I attend because at first my Dad/Mom got me in the practice of attending and most especially I like to listen to the preaching of the gospel from the priest. Next, after reading the new King James version of the bible, I read the part about Jesus saying I need not confess to man but to God alone. Because growing up and practising it for a long time before and a little time after I got married I have been going to confession. One priest was mentioning that I read the bible, profess and confess to it and follow God’s law. Like I mentioned Jesus said I do not need to confess to a priest my sins but to God alone. Then again I read about the Eucharist and about how it was explained about and then that is when I started feeling more of my bonding with Jesus is when I thank him every day and not even having to eat the bread and drink the cup every Sunday. As Jesus explained it to be born again, you must bring yourself to believe that the son died on the cross for our sins and that to acknowledge that he is our Lord and Savior if we don’t believe in the only begotten and why he died on the cross then we will be short into coming into the kingdom of God. Then I believe in the Ten Commandments. I was chastised once for not calling the priest father. When in the Ten Commandments God said, “thall shall not call anyone father but to God himself. I still go and attend still to listen to the preaching of the gospel and because my wife insists I go with her too.

      • @ Daniel: This is very twisted. Please show me where Jesus said in context that …
        1) We need not confess to man but to God alone?
        2) That one can feel MORE bonding with Jesus when one “thank (God) every day and not even having to eat the bread and drink the cup every Sunday”?
        3) That to be “born again” means bringing oneself to “believe that the son died on the cross for our sins and that to acknowledge that he is our Lord and Savior …. “?
        4) Where does it say in the Ten Commandments that “(we) shall not call anyone father but to God himself”?

        Remember context, and context.

  304. Dear Surkiko,

    The Ten Commandments about God talking to Moses and the part when he God said thou shall not call any body father but to God himself is found in the old testament and even Jesus said so in the New Testament. About confessing, Jesus said it in the New Testament also. My understanding about not eating the bread and drinking the cup is a symbol of believing in Christ that he’s out savior when you accept him with all your mine body and soul and believe that he died on the cross for our sins and shedding his blood to wash away our sins is bonding enough for me. On his Jesus’s last supper he says do this in memory of me is simply that what he had been trying to teach. And really when you follow his God’s laws which is the Ten Commandments, and forgiving as being the most powerful gift ever given to man from Christ is bonding enough for me and should be to all believers in Christ.

    • Dear Daniel,
      Would you mind giving me a hint on where to find, in the Ten Commandments, that we should not call anyone Father but God himself?

      First of all, Christ preached that we should not call anyone on Earth your Father, for there is only one Father in Heaven. This teaching is hyperbolic and the main purpose is to tell us that there’s one only eternal God the Father who had created us, no more no less. Christ did not intend to take away the earthly biological relationships between children and their earthly fathers – since Christ repeatedly commanded all of us to honor our father & our mother in his Gospels according to Luke, Mark & Matthew. There are many verses too that show that earthly fatherhood is allowed and even Paul called himself a father.

      Besides, the use of the word “father,” in regards to priests, only means that a priest acts as a spiritual guide under the authority of God the Father. The priest also takes on a earthly fatherly role in guiding God’s children who are born again in Christ through baptism. No one in their right mind thinks that each priest is God the Father or that any human being is their creator. Jesus made this statement to help us focus on our true origins and upon that which has lasting value. This type of message is can viewed as a metaphor as well. It is a figurative language used as a method of teaching and not meant to be taken literally.

      With regards to the Eucharist, I’ve already explained why it couldn’t be symbolic. Even the early church fathers (centuries A.D.) believed in the literal presence of Christ in the Eucharist because Christ said ‘This IS my body…’ and ‘This IS my blood’ as he held the bread and wine respectively to the apostles. Doing in remembrance of him brings Catholics to repeatedly celebrate the Eucharist and remember what he had done for us in his sorrowful passion.

      Lastly, would you mind quoting the verses that ask us to confess to God alone? Confessing to the priest is confessing to God (not saying that the Priest is God!) This is because in the upper room, Christ already gave authority to his disciples that whom they retain the sins shall be retained. It’s clear that they can administer earthly forgiveness through Christ our God.

      Lastly, Christ wants us to not only follow the 10 commandments but also the commandments he had laid in the NT. Remember his greatest commandment of Love (repeated in his Gospel) Faith hope and love – Love is the greatest! Carry out your faith with his commandments and indulge in the friendship and the loving kindness with God.

      • Jesus Christ Requires YOU To Confess YOUR Sins To Him,
        And Confess To Other People That Jesus Christ Is YOUR Lord And God. Not your sins because he knows of your sins but to be saved he Jesus is the only spiritual being that can save you.

        • Firstly, Amen to that! Catholics fully agrees and thus, sincerely confess their sins to The Lord Christ Jesus during the Confession with the priest. Since Christ our God himself gave authority to his apostles to administer his forgiveness in the Upper Room like what I had aforementioned, the priests (successors of them) thus have the authority to administer Christ’s forgiveness on earth.

          Second, amen to that again! Catholics proclaim Jesus is The Lord like any other Protestant Christians too! Catholics believe that this good and important news ought to be spread throughout the world. With all due respect, like what I had said earlier, if you don’t believe in confessing your sins to the priest (successors of the apostles), how do you explain Christ Jesus’ words to his 12 apostles that whoever they forgive shalt be forgiven & whosever sins they retain, shalt be retained?

      • Don’t Call anyone Father
        Matthew 23:8-10, ““But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9 “And do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ.”

  305. My wife and I are moving to Tehachapi CA in a few weeks and the sermon on Sunday was entitled, “How to properly respond to the call of God. The scripture was Luke 5:1-11.
    I’m interested in hearing what went on at your respective churches.

  306. But if you go to church once a week your Bible study will be woefully short.

  307. The church around the world does this. That’s great.

  308. Because the disciples themselves were with Jesus it is only them that Jesus had given authority but I am not convinced that it even gets passed on to the pope and priests because of Paul. Too much interpretation going on. Still not convincing me what so ever and what I believe in my heart is what Jesus said coming from his disciples.

    • @ Daniel: “In religion, what damned error, but some sober brow will bless it and approve it with a text” (William Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice, Act III, Sc II, lines 77-79).

    • I shall quote from BFHU’s post on confession:

      2 Corinthians 5:17-20 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 18All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

      Now this verse can be interpreted in a Protestant way to mean salvation by the preaching of the Gospel. However, we see this verse as further proof for the sacrament of reconciliation/confession. Also, James points out that

      James 5:13-16 Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. 14Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. 16Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

      The Greek word for elders is presbuterous. This is the Greek etymological root from which we get our English word for priest. So, James is saying to call the priests to pray for healing both physical and spiritual. Why would James specify the calling of the elders/priests for those who are sick if they had no more authority than the average Christian?

      In the past, elders do pass down authority.

  309. Very good point Spencer. I checked it out too. Presbuterous is the greek word for priest (other meanings are older, senior, and presbytery).
    It does say to confess and pray for each other for healing. The prayer of a righteous “man” is powerful and effective. We do believe that each NT believer is a priest unto God and that we do have authority.
    First Corinthians talks about those having specific gifts. Apostles are mentioned first and those having the gift of healing in the same passage.
    Can you elaborate on the 2 Cor.5 passage when you said that this is proof for the sacrament of reconciliation/confession.

    • @ Terry: Sacrament of Confession is found here – John 20:23: “(Saying to the apostles) Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” It’s important to note the second part of the authority to “retain” also.

  310. If I may like I had posted earlier. The healing and driving out the demon authority were only handed to and authorized to the disciples by Jesus himself.

    • Precisely. The authority, from Jesus, passed down till now from the apostles! This is like how Paul had appointed and taught Timothy (since young) to be the bishop of Ephesus.

      Digression: I happened to come across this blog >>> http://ivarfjeld.wordpress.com/ which is full of misconceptions & lies of the Catholic Church. It’s so sickening for them to straightaway assume the Catholic Church to be the Mother of Harlots – just because they hate the Church.

  311. Good morning Spencer
    I read that article about St. Denis.
    I wasn’t sure if you were answering my questions about the authority of the laity in the church.

  312. Good morning everybody
    Halloween is coming up and last year we went out in our costumes (I was Captain America) and shared the gospel door-to-door. I’m inviting you to do the same. This is a perfect opportunity for the church to be that light. People welcomed us and only a few said this was not the right time. I said when is the right time?
    I know many people are scared to do this because 1)They’ve never done it and 2) They haven’t been equipped.
    If anyone needs training I can give them a few pointers on how to rock their neighborhood for Christ.
    Don’t forget to bring tracts and breath mints.

  313. Hello bfhu
    I think about your husband often. Is he still teaching a C/P bible study and what are his reasons for not embracing the Catholic faith?

  314. Dear Terry,
    No, my husband is not teaching at the moment. He has had to attend to other pressing matters. He has not real intellectual reasons for not embracing the Catholic Church. He once said he did not want to submit to the pope and he disagrees with the Catholic Church about the death penalty….but Catholics are free to disagree on that issue. I think it is a spiritual issue of some sort and not really logical. If it was he would tell me. But he avoids answering if anyone asks him.

  315. Dear bfhu
    If I may ask one more question.
    Is he attending a church right now?

  316. Good morning everybody
    Have a great day at church. Here’s Psalms 99 from The Message:
    “God rules. On your toes everyboby. He rules from his angel throne, take notice. God looms majestic in Zion. He towers in splendor over all the big names. Great and terrible your beauty: let everyone praise you. Holy. Yes, holy.”
    Let me know how your Sunday went and what you learned.
    Today we’ll be at the mall preaching.

  317. Hello again
    Todays sermon was on the feeding of the 5,000 and why people come to Jesus and the question: are you a follower or a fan?
    We went to the mall today and I asked a young man whose parents are Sikhs a question: If you could ask God any question and know he’ll answer, what would it be? He said in regards to heaven, where do I stand?
    When I finished I asked him if he wanted to receive forgiveness of sin and he said that wanted to hear more so I gave him my phone number. Please pray for this young man named Mark.
    My wife and her friend were also busy preaching the word so it was a great day.

  318. Hi folks
    Todays sermon was on Jude and my own personal study was Psalms 19. Verse six says, “The law of the Lord is perfect converting the soul.”
    What went on today at your churches?

  319. Hello Spencer
    In verse 25 it says that large crowds were following Jesus. It seems that he was in the process of wittling down the numbers by using hyperbole and preaching death by design.
    In Las Vegas a gentlemen was asked by his pastor: how to separate the fans from the ticket buyers? He said to hold the next service in an alley or an empty lot.

    • The first condition to be Christ’s disciple is to ‘hate your father and your mother…’, what is your view on that ‘hatred’ we are supposed to have? The Canadian daily mass taught me that it’s a metaphoric denial of oneself, one’s life, one’s family and friends in order to pick up one’s cross and follow Him. That great and supreme love for God, which has to be the centre of our lives.

      • The priest said yesterday that it was hyperbolic and that it meant we should not put anything or anyone before God. It could not be that we are actually supposed to hate anyone since we are supposed to love others.

  320. Hello again
    My view would be based on the greek word for hate which means to “love less” and having a great and intense love of God that far exceeds my mother and father.

    • I see, may I know what Greek word is that? It’d helpful in my understanding of hyperbolic verses.
      By the way, I just realized you’re an Evangelist. Curious to know: Have you attended a Catholic mass before?

  321. I heard someone say it was to be a turning away from your family if they were unbelievers since it could damage your walk with Jesus.
    This may especially apply to Jewish converts.

  322. @ Charles: Christianity is not sectarianism where you shun non-believers. God’s 4th Commandment opens the second table (The first three Commandments were about our relationship with God) of the Decalogue, teaching us the order of charity which is first to honor our parents. It applies whether one is a Christian or not, or if one’s parent or parents are Christian.

    See Eph 6:2-3: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.” Even our Lord honored his mother by giving her to John the beloved thus making sure that she will be taken care of after he’s gone.

  323. You can still honour your father and mother and turn away from their beliefs. Jacob did not even go to his father’s funeral alongside Esau but travelled with his family separate – he did honour Esau with gifts.

    A Jewish family will usually reject their children if they turn to Jesus.

    The gospel teaches us to be separate from the world.

    For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, Peter

    So it would be right to help one’s parents but if they do not believe you
    have to turn away from their unbelief.

    • @ Charles: No one is saying that you should apostatize for your parents. However, do honor your parents as if you really mean it, regardless. There are not 9 Commandments.

  324. Hello Spencer
    The greek word is “miseo” (mis-eh’-o), and it follows the thought of Matthew 10:37, “Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me…”
    Yes, I’ve attended Catholic mass several times.

  325. Good morning Surkiko
    The fourth commandment was about the sabbath, the fifth concerns our parents.

    • @ Terry: Only if you are a johnny-come-lately Protestant who broke up the First Commandment into two commandments. What are they thinking? It’s the holy number “3” afterall for the truine God and our relationship with the Trinity. ;))

  326. Thats exactly what I said ??????

    • Yes. My parents are non-christians, nonetheless I’ll still honor them. This goes very well hand in hand with the Asian value of filial piety in my small Asian society.

      • @ Spencer: You’ve been “taught” well to understand “filial piety” perfectly. Most of the younger generations have lost that.

      • Thank you! I do agree that filial piety is losing its position, even in Asian societies like mine; where western morals are apparently starting to subjugate some Asian ones.

  327. Do your parents have any religious beliefs?

    • My parents are Buddhists. My mum used to attend an Evangelical charismatic church when she was younger, but lost faith in God because of that particular church’s self-interpreted teaching on ‘sola fide’. No offense, she told me that she finds it ridiculous and contradiciting in the teaching on imputed righteousness – when that church also taught that anyone can lose salvation if one does not follow god’s commandments (works merited under God’s grace). That’s about it.

      • The troubling parody of “imputed grace” and “snow-covered dunghill” justification can be overwhelming …

  328. Hi Surkiko
    Thanks for the correction.

  329. I’m sorry your mom lost faith in God because of that teaching. I will pray for them. Did anything else happen that turned her away from the faith?
    When you mentioned imputed righteousness, did you mean what God credits to our account by faith?

    • She also finds that particular church’s teaching on the ‘unimportance’ of carrying out good works absurd. If God himself is mercy and love & even tells us that love is greater than faith, why wouldn’t good works be equally important as well? Since we are supposed to love and serve one another.
      Finally, my mum totally lost faith when her church friends only thanked God when it was my mum herself, who helped them during their difficult times. Her good works didn’t beget gratitude and kindness.

      That church’s teaching on imputed righteousness was more or less close to the teaching of eternal security. When you believe, you’ll saved no matter what. Nothing else equally matters, other than your faith only.

      • @ Spencer:

        “A man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law … not by faith alone … for faith apart from works is dead … but FAITH WORKING THROUGH LOVE” (Rom 3:28, Jas 2:24, 26, Gal 5:6).

        It’s an absurdity when Christians can believe that salvation is a one-time past event instead of a continuing process to be worked out “with trembling and fear” (Phil 2:12) and the perseverance to cross the finish line (2 Tim 4:7, Heb 12:1).

      • Yes. That came from my mum, nevertheless I still agree with you that faith without works is dead.

        I agree! It is so sickening when those Christians who judge others because others do not solely profess Jesus as their lord god and saviour to gain salvation. We are supposed to work out our own salvation in Christ with fear and trembling, as instituted by Paul. We are saved by grace through faith, which would be dead without works.

  330. My wife and I are moving tomorrow so I’ll be signing off for about a week. We’ll be praying for Spencer’s parents.

  331. Greetings from Tehachapi CA. It’s between Bakersfield and Mojave on Hwy 58. I’m on the library computer. We moved from Inglewood.
    You are so right about the importance of works. Actually, we need to take our vitamins.
    Vitamin A- Adoration and acts of service.
    B- Bible study.
    C- Church.
    D- Discipleship
    E- Evangelism
    F- Fellowship
    G- Giving.
    H- Healing.
    I- Intercession

    • Tehachapi sounds like a place of resort with rolling golden hills, blue sky and clean air !

      Can’t agree with you more about A-I.

  332. Last year we had a discussion group that talked about the great questions of the Christian faith.
    One was: If God says, “Thou shall not kill,” why does God kill?
    What do you think?

    • The word in Exodus 20 is not actually “kill” but more like our word “murder”. So it is unauthorized Killing. So capital punishment is authorized, war is authorized and God is authorized to do whatever He deems necessary b/c He can make it up to the innocent in Heaven.

  333. @ Terry: I think that it’s more a problem with the archaic form of rendering in KJV. The modern translations will render it as “murder” to be more accurate and faithful to the original language. God does not murder. There’s justified killing and there are times when God will “kill” for cause. What do you think?

  334. Hey Surkiko
    I agree. God doesn’t kill indiscrimanently. He does give people time to repent (Noah and Jonah) and he also gives orders to completely cleanse the land (Joshua).
    In California, there are five ways you can legally and legitmately kill someone.
    Another question is one that our group had a lot of fun with:
    Is it ever permissible to lie?
    This one took an hour to answer.

  335. @ Terry: This one will be more involved. I will just give you a link which should give a very comprehensive answer. After that, we can discuss again if necessary. Hope that you’ve settled down nicely in your new home.

    http://www.catholic.com/magazine/articles/is-lying-ever-right

  336. Hello.
    Yes we’ve finally gotten rid of the ugly boxes and settled in nicely.
    I haven’t looked on the link yet because I want to give you my thoughts on the matter.
    I thought about an extreme case of Jews hiding in a Nazi dominated country. If they came to the door of such a house, the owners would deliberately deceive the Nazis in order to protect the people. So yes it is permissible in some cases to lie.
    Another question would be: Is it ever right to lie? The answer is no because it violates the standard. It is sin.

    • But even if its for the greater good? It may violate the standard but it carries out and exudes the intrinsic value of Christ’s commandment of love?

      It’s sounds complicated.

  337. There is a whole moral theology behind all this. Objectively, lying is always immoral but subjectively, there are a lot of variables which may or may not mitigate or excuse it. I think that sinning involves the full cooperation of the will, intent and consent of a person. For instance, to divert or redirect an aggressor like a Nazi who’s intent was to kill an innocent Jew can be deemed reasonable for the “common good.” Even if a Christian would purposely “lie” (like indirectly) to the Nazi, it’s very doubtful if the full veracity of the “will, intent and consent” is present. Whenever I think of the hilarious scene in The Sound of Music when the Sisters disabled the Nazi’s cars by removing the radiator hosts so the Von Trapp family could get away, I like to think that God also has a humor, is just and merciful toward all of us in spite of our shortcomings. Nevertheless, we should still always humbly confess the “sin” even if it is just a venial one. A lot of venial sins can build up on each other, and become deadly ultimately if we are not careful and vigilant about them.

    Hopefully, Terry will examine the link and give us a summary of the gist of it. I only took a cursive look at the article but it seems to be very good.

  338. Good morning
    The article was deep but it’s not really complicated.
    Dr. Mirus mentioned a word that I couldn’t remember when I first asked the question. Is it ever “necessary” to lie?
    The article stated that most of us can and should lie under certain circumstances (as with the thugs), but we don’t know exactly why.

    I think Spencer nailed it. There are moral and ethical laws that we abide by, but there’s another law that supercedes. I’ll call it the “law of protection” or the law of the “greater good.” I am perfectly free to drink. There’s no sin involved. But if it would cause my brother to stumble in any way, then I should refrain.

    In the case of the thugs, the person has told an untruth. Colossians 3:9 says “Don’t lie to each other.” He has sinned and “everyone who sins breaks the law (1 John 3:4). But he’s carrying out and exuding the intrinsic value of Christ’s command to love. Therefore, it would be necessary to lie.

    • In other words, we have to confess a white lie to God?

      • @ Spencer: I will certainly advise (not that you are doing it of course) to not to get into a habit of telling any lies including all the white- and convenient lies. What do you think?

  339. By the way, I’m using my wife’s computer.

  340. In “The Sound of Music”, when the sisters disable the Nazis car, one said just before she revealed the item, “reverend mother, I have sinned.”

  341. @ Terry/Spencer: I have a different take. I don’t think that the “law of protection of the greater good” should supersede another divine and/or natural law. The suggestion that the “intrinsic value of Christ’s commandment of love” can trump justice or truth or any other of God’s essential qualities has need for more clarification. One truth doesn’t have to exclude other truths. One commandment “Love thy neighbors” does not negate another commandment (Not to bear false witness – lying). It may be that we can get caught up in circumstances where are no good answers in a particular situation (like the hypothetical Nazis/Jews scenario) simply because of the nature of a broken world. But to rationalize away by calling lying as good is not helpful. Personal culpability is reduced in certain situations but the sinful nature of lying is never removed.

    All lies come from Satan, the father of all lies. I think that we need to call what’s a spade, a spade, that it is better to own up to the undesirable choice than trying to explain it away or even circumventing God’s mercy. As Christians, we have to be careful not to give more weight to the mortal life than eternal life. Our mortal lives, while precious, are not the goal of our existence. We should always trust God in His providence and infinite mercy, but we must also never presume mercy to ease our conscience of lying. I think the problem is that most people simply don’t respect truth enough nowadays, so they are not committed enough to making serious efforts to avoid telling untruths or to think about or practise using alternatives like the lessor evils of evasion, re-direction or some proportionate action (part of the broad “mental reservation”) to combat the dilemma.

    We are living in a post-modern time where lying is sometime viewed to be okay and even good. That’s an atheistic viewpoint. So instead of regarding it as a “greater good,” we may have to rethink if it is really the same as the “higher moral good” or even a choice for the “lessor good” with truth as being a positive value.

    So I’m more at home with Augustine and Aquinas. I don’t hold the view that it is “necessary to lie.” So after what we may have thought to be the only and best thing to do (lying) in a particular circumstance, we must confess in humility like the Sisters in the Sound of Music, “Reverend Mother, I have sinned” even though it’s only venial and not deadly for sure.

    • I see. In other words, lying maybe necessary in certain situations, but it nonetheless is still a violation of God’s commandment not to lie. Though we carried out Christ’s commandment of love, we still bore false witness. So, we still have to confess right?

      • @ Spencer: That’s just my personal opinion and seems to be the counsel of the Church too. I would even go as far to say that lying is never necessary since there are always “alternatives” including the “no greater love” of lay down one’s life for our neighbors. We can emulate Blessed Maximilian Kolbe who followed our Lord closely by offering to take the place of another prisoner to be executed at death camp in WW2. We always say the end never justifies the means so why make an exception here? But I understand that not every one can always think or make the best decision under great stress and duress. Thus it’s important to avail ourselves of the Sacrament of Confession. I hope that I’m making sense.

  342. Rahab lied when she hid the jewish spies and told her own tribe that she had not seen them. It is possible paul’s friends lied to the Jews when they lowered him in a basket outside of the city – they would have been likely asked if they had seen him .

  343. @ Charles: So does the bible say that Rahab or Paul’s friends did good morally with lying? Or that’s another silence part in the bible … ?

  344. Lying is not good. Is it necessary? Maybe in extenuating circumstances such as God sanctioning lying prophets in 1 Kings 22. If someone does lie, it’s a good idea to confess since they have missed the mark.

    If the gang of thugs came to your door looking for someone that you’re hiding, would you say they weren’t there?

  345. Honestly, I will have to cross that bridge when the time comes. There will be alternatives: I can refuse to open the door, refuse to answer the question, delay entry thus allowing time for one to escape, brandish my own weapon for self-defence, warn the thugs that the police is on the way, and so on. Ultimately, there’s just as much a chance that the thugs will disbelieve a “lie” thus rendering it ineffective anyway.

    Or one may decide to trust that God is perfectly capable of extricating from trouble those who stand fast in the truth (like the story of Bishop Firmus of Thagasta). A heroic virtue but is considered foolhardiness for the world without the eyes of faith.

    • 400 false prophets still don’t add up to truth! I don’t think that God “sanctioned” lying prophets. Remember, God obviously didn’t lie but He also sent the real prophet Micaiah who was rejected. Thus it’s more accurate to say that God “permitted” it just like in the mysterious problem of suffering in a contingent world due to sins. In Romans 1:26-27, we will learn how God will “give (men) up to dishonorable passions … and receiving the due penalty for their error.”

  346. Well as far as I know Rahab was saved – James – Was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?

    • @ Charles: I don’t think there was ever the suggestion that someone who “lied” prudently was eternally damned. Rahab would be among those who were awaiting in the “bosom of Abraham” for Christ’s redemptive work. I don’t think Rahab was saved by “works” in the sense from James. So you think that lying to save the two spices was meritorious somewhat?

  347. I will leave the meaning that James intended through the Holy Spirit’s
    inspiration – it certainly had a meritorious effect on Rahab if this works saved her.

  348. How was Rahab rewarded for exercising faith? Her preservation during Jericho?s destruction surely was a blessing from God. Later, she married Salmon (Salma), the son of the wilderness chieftain Nahshon of the tribe of Judah. As parents of the godly Boaz, Salmon and Rahab formed a link in the line of descent that led to King David of Israel. (1?Chronicles 2:3-15; Ruth 4:20-22)
    More significantly, the former prostitute Rahab is one of only four women named in Matthew’s genealogy of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 1:5,6)

  349. @ Charles: I don’t see how all this has to do with seeing lying as a sin objectively. Rahab might be blessed for other virtues but not for lying. Maybe it’s just me but I can’t see how committing a sin against the 10 Commandment can be viewed as a blessing from God. I find it very odd that anyone should argue that the sin of lying (bearing false witness) can be rationalized to be consistent with a God who is also just and holy. But if that’s edifying for you, then all the power to you. BTW, Rahab may not the the same person named in the genealogy in Matthew but that’s another topic for discussion at another time. Take care, Charles.

  350. I never said lying was edifying – I just repeated scripture to you .

    To be a spy you have to lie – it would depend on the motives of your
    heart.

    • @ Charles: Rehab was not the spy.

    • @ Charles: My apology since I didn’t know that you were actually quoting scripture. So let’s take a closer look then at scripture. James stated that Rahab was “justified by her works which when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?” The messengers were the Israelite spies of course. Yes, Rahab was praised for receiving them and then sending them in a different direction to avoid being captured. But scripture is cold silent on the lie she perpetrated earlier (to the men from king of Jericho). So I wouldn’t necessarily equate that silence as consent by God.

      Also, if we examined the actual incident in Josh 2, Rahab was really telling the truth indirectly. She told the men from the king of Jericho that: (1) “but I did not know where they came from” (v 4) – It’s very probable that Rahab didn’t know about this when the two men first came to her; 2) “and when it was time to close the gate at dark, the men (spies) went out” (v 5) – We learned from v 15 that Rahab’s house was “on the outer side of the city wall and she resided within the wall itself” – meaning that the spies were in fact hiding outside the gate of the city wall so Rahab wasn’t telling a falsehood; 3) “Where the men went I do not know” (v 5) – Yes, Rahab did hid them on her roof but technically, but she wouldn’t know if they had stayed put where she had left them or had moved to another location.

      The important thing to note is that Rahab never told a direct lie. She used evasive and the need-to-know techniques.

      So Charles, I thank you for pointing out the Rahab incident which is a very really good example to illustrate what I have had been talking about. Hopefully, this is a closure on the matter of lying for Christians. From here, I will try to abstain from further commenting on the topic so I can just listen to what other readers may have to say about the matter whether they agree or disagree with me. God bless.

  351. Hello People
    Today we looked at 2 Ch. 20 with King Jehoshaphat petitioning God when several armies declared war. He inquired of the Lord and proclaimed a fast.
    Jehoshaphat first of all worshipped, praised, remembered his faithfulness and took encouragement from history, confessed his dependance, sought direction, and looked to the word.
    My individual study was on Matthew five where God calls us not to be peace keepers, but peace makers.
    After the service I went to the bar (VFW) to get to know all the veterans. It’s a sad place. You’re either divorced or a drunk.
    What happened in your churches today?

    • I was assigned to take someone to her catechism class at another parish today. It was my first visit to this church. Great congregation. As usual, we had the three readings: 1) Dan 12:1-3/Ps 16:5, 8, 9-10, 2) Heb 10:11-14, 18; and, 3) Mk 13:24-32. The connection theme was eschatology as we approached the end of the church calendar. The priest spoke about the relevancy of our own “end time” which may creep up on us anytime, to be always prepared to meet our Maker, and the final accountability for the stewardship of our lives on earth. After Mass, some members stayed to recite the chaplet of the Divine Mercy. I joined them. I found out that they are doing this after each Mass at this particular church. Needless to say, I was very inspired.

      Interestingly, the priest also mentioned about an upcoming pilgrimage to the Divine Mercy shrine in Vilnius, Lithuania. I may join them. While we were admiring the well-kept ground of the church, we saw the two pillars with the Ten Commandments inscribed on them. I used the opportunity to explain them to my grandchildren. We all had much fun doing it. Overall, it was a wonderful Christian Sabbath with the family on the Lord’s Day.

  352. Hi Surkiko
    Good point. Saying God permitted is a better than saying he sanctioned, which sounds like complete agreement of the act itself.

    In the case of the thugs we also have to ask: what would Jesus do? Since we know that God cannot lie, we know that Jesus would not only tell the truth, but be man enough to accept the consequences.