Catholics Cannot Work Their Way to Heaven



Daniel: If you believe in the Bible, it says that there is no other way to Heaven but through him. You cannot work your way there.

BFHU: We all agree on this. Catholics cannot work their way to Heaven and we know perfectly well that we cannot do this. This is a Protestant myth about the Catholic Church.

Daniel: God is a perfect and holy being and we are pitiful and sinful by nature. Therefore there is no way for us to get to heaven.

BFHU: Absolutely correct, Daniel.

Daniel: That’s why Jesus died on the cross, to
forgive our sins, so we can go to Heaven.

BFHU: True.,

Daniel: But, on the matter of going through a priest and Mary to communicate with God, that directly against the Bible.

BFHU: We are not required to go through a priest or Mary in order to communicate with God. This is yet another Protestant myth. But even so I would like for you to quote to us the verses in scripture that support your  assertion.

Daniel: Mary was a simple human being was chosen by God to be the mother of Jesus.

BFHU:Yes. And because she was chosen to be the mother of Jesus, and since Jesus was God, Mary is the mother of God the Son. And she was also given the gift of unfallen human nature…just like Adam and Eve before the Fall.

Daniel: That does not mean that Mary is in anyway higher than God.

BFHU: That is very true.

He Waits for YOU!


Lifehouse Everything – Drama

What is Man?



Q. What is Man?
A. Man is a living being
, endowed with a sensitive physical body, and a spiritual soul which is immortal by its very nature, and which rejoices in the two spiritual faculties of intelligence and freewill.

Q. How can we know that we have a soul?

A. A living human body is not the same thing as a corpse. Now the soul is the difference between a corpse and a living being. A dead body cannot move, eat, think, express itself, enjoy, or be miserable. It can only fall to pieces and go back to dust. There is something that stops your body from doing that now. It is your soul.

For every activity you must find a principle of operation behind it. The principle in a man which thinks and loves, and is happy or miserable, is a very real thing. It is not nothing. Neither is it less than the very body it animates. Nor is it a chemical. No doctor, examining a corpse, can tell you what chemical is missing that it should not live.

There is something that science cannot reach; it is the soul or spirit. Look anyone in the face, and behind those animated features, those changing expressions, in the very eyes, you will read the soul. Radio Replies Vol. 1 #25 & 27

Where is God’s Justice?


Q. Where is the justice of God, in permittinng such an uneven distribution of goods in this world?

A. A satisfactory explanation would not be possible if this life on Earth was all there was or ever would be. But it is not. The soul is eternal. God permits these things only because He knows that there is a future life where He will rectify and compensate all inequalities. In the meantime He draws good out of these miseries, for they teach men no to set their hopes entirely upon this world as if there were no other, and help to expiate the sins of mankind. If we cannot be entirely hppy here , let us at least make sure of being happy in the next life. Radio Replies Vol. 1 #14

Hollywood Writer Conversion


2-September-2008 — Catholic News Agency

Hollywood Author Writes of His Damascus-like Conversion

Hollywood, Sep 1, 2008 (CNA).- The author of the dark thrillers Basic Instant, Jagged Edge and Showgirls is about to release a book unlike any script he has ever written. It is the story of his spiritual conversion from a party-lifestyle to one devoted to Christ and his family.

In his book, Crossbearer: A Memoir of Faith, the former senior editor of the Rolling Stone, Joe Eszterhas, explains his conversion.

Eszterhas grew up in refugee camps in Hungary during World War II before living in the back alleys of Cleveland. It was there that he worked as a police reporter racing to cover “countless shootings” and “urban riots,” he told the Toledo Blade.

At the time, his life was very dark—one filled with death, murder, crime and chaos. He describes his writing as equally dark and also “sexually graphic.”


During the summer of 2001, Eszterhas was diagnosed with throat cancer. His doctors worked to remove 80 per cent of his larynx and told him to immediately quit drinking and smoking. Eszterhas was 56. He lived a wild lifestyle and knew that changing his habits would not be easy.


His Conversion

On a day Eszterhas describes as “hellishly hot,” he was walking through a tree-lined neighborhood when he realized he had hit rock-bottom.

Eszterhas described his frame of mind: “I was going crazy. I was jittery. I twitched. I trembled. I had no patience for anything. … Every single nerve ending was demanding a drink and a cigarette.” He sat on the curb and began to cry. In between fits of crying he began to pray, “Please God, help me.” He hadn’t prayed since he was a child. “I couldn’t believe I’d said it. I didn’t know why I’d said it. I’d never said it before,” he wrote. God reached out His hand. Eszterhas was immediately overwhelmed with peace. His twitching stopped. He no longer trembled. He saw a “shimmering, dazzling, nearly blinding brightness that made me cover my eyes with my hands.”

Similar to Saul seeing a blinding light on his way to Damascus, Eszterhas had seen the light of Christ. Eszterhas described the experience as “absolutely overwhelming.”He went from doubting if he could make it through life without tobacco and alcohol, to knowing that he could “defeat myself and win.”

Living the Catholic Faith

Since his Damascus-like experience in 2001, he and his wife have attended Mass regularly at a local Catholic church.

In his book, Eszterhas frankly includes his opinions on the clerical sexual abuse scandals. Because of the abuse and cover-ups, Eszterhas describes his continued struggle to trust the Church. He explains that he and his wife decided that they could not, in good conscience, donate money to the church and they are paranoid to leave their sons alone with priests at catechetical classes.


The book also describes priests’ homilies as boring and pointless. In a search for more content and dynamism, Eszterhas attended a non-denominational mega-church. While the sermon was powerful, he left feeling empty without the Liturgy and Eucharist.

“It may have been a church full of pedophiles and criminals covering up other criminals’ sins … it may have been a church riddled with hypocrisy, deceit, and corruption … but our mega-church experience taught us that we were captive Catholics,” he wrote.

“The Eucharist and the presence of the body and blood of Christ is, in my mind, an overwhelming experience for me. I find that Communion for me is empowering. It’s almost a feeling of a kind of high.”


Today Eszterhas continues to receive large offers for movies with dark, sinister themes. However, he maintains he has “spent too much of his life exploring the dark side of humanity and does not want to go there anymore.”

“Frankly my life changed from the moment God entered my heart. I’m not interested in the darkness anymore. I’ve got four gorgeous boys, a wife I adore, I love being alive, and I love and enjoy every moment of my life. My view has brightened and I don’t want to go back into that dark place.”

“Miraculously Cured”

Eszterhas’ appreciation for life intensified even more last year when his surgeon told him another visit would not be necessary.

“He used the word ‘cured,’ a word that oncologists generally don’t use,” Eszterhas said. “He said I didn’t have to come back for any checks, that my tissue had regenerated to the point where you cannot only not tell that there was ever any cancer there, but you can’t tell that there had been any surgery there.

“Naomi and I were, of course, overwhelmed when he told us. I think it’s truly a miraculous blessing.”

Eszterhas was compelled to write his book as “a thank you to God” and “to tell the world what He has done for me.”

His wife has consistently been supportive. When she finished his book, she gave it a hug saying, “That’s how I feel. I’m very proud of it.”

Would My Ignorance Save Me?



Q. If I sincerely believe that there is no god but it turns out that God does exist, then wouldn’t my invincible ignorance save me?

A. Such ignorance is not invincible. You can overcome it. You violated your reason in suppressing its spontaneous concept of God and by persuading yourself that religion is false. If you took the pressure off your reason and let it swing back to the Supreme Cause of its very being, it would do so, as the needle to the pole. Pascal rightly says that there are two types of men, those who are afraid to lose God, and those who are afraid that they might find Him. Radio Replies Vol. I: #7

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Fr. Corapi’s Conversion



Fr. Corapi’s Conversion Story – Condensed Version

Faith Alone


Q. I am a Catholic. I teach CCD/PSR to 4th graders.
I teach them what the bible says and that is that if you believe in 
Jesus Christ,you will live with him in his kingdom for eternity. 
There are dozens of scripturepassages to back up this thought.

A. That is too minimal for several reasons. God may, MAY make that judgment for some people, but the Church cannot teach that authoritatively.

The ordinary and secure method for salvation has been given to the Catholic Church.

Baptism

John 3:3 In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.4″How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” 5 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.

I Peter 3:21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you


Eucharist

John 3:50But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. 53 Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me.”

Attend mass as a minimum to obey the commandment.

Exodus 20:8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.

It is a mortal (as in deadly) sin to knowingly and willfully, without a good reason, skip mass or any other holy day of obligation.

Confession

For the forgiveness of a mortal sin one needs to go to confession to a priest and receive absolution. Dying with a mortal sin on your soul would bring condemnation.

I John 5:16 If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that. 17All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.

CCC 1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the “eternal punishment” of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the “temporal punishment” of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin.

Remarriage

Mark 10:11 He (Jesus) answered, “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her.

Adultery is a mortal sin and is not a good thing to have on your soul. Now, let me be clear. A person would have to know first of all that remarriage is adultery and do it anyway for it to qualify as a mortal sin for that person. Nevertheless, adultery is always objectively a grave sin.

In closing, as a catechist who earnestly desires the salvation and safety of souls, or you wouldn’t take the time to teach CCD, I hope you can now see that it is risky to teach that belief in Jesus is all you need to go to Heaven.

I realize you can’t get into a lot of detail at the level you are teaching, but they need to hear a little more about what the Bible actually says we need for salvation. What if they never have the opportunity of receiving more advanced teaching and they honestly have been convinced that they can live any way and do any thing and still go to Heaven as long as they believe in Jesus. Sola Fide, Faith Alone, is one of the errors or the Protestant Reformation.

CCC 816 “The sole Church of Christ [is that] which our Savior, after his Resurrection, entrusted to Peter’s pastoral care, commissioning him and the other apostles to extend and rule it. . . . This Church, constituted and organized as a society in the present world, subsists in (subsistit in) the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in communion with him.“267

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. It was to the apostolic college alone, of which Peter is the head, that we believe that our Lord entrusted all the blessings of the New Covenant, in order to establish on earth the one Body of Christ into which all those should be fully incorporated who belong in any way to the People of God.” UR #3

Wounds to unity

817 In fact, “in this one and only Church of God from its very beginnings there arose certain rifts, which the Apostle strongly censures as damnable. But in subsequent centuries much more serious dissensions appeared and large communities became separated from full communion with the Catholic Church – for which, often enough, men of both sides were to blame.” The ruptures that wound the unity of Christ’s Body – here we must distinguish heresy, apostasy, and schism 270 – do not occur without human sin:

Where there are sins, there are also divisions, schisms, heresies, and disputes. Where there is virtue, however, there also are harmony and unity, from which arise the one heart and one soul of all believers.

Confession to God Alone? Scripture Alone….?


A discussion from a comment on the post Bare Minimum for Salvation

Lena: I just want to say that Jesus did in fact die for the sins of mankind. No matter what “works” you do it is not enough to get you into the kingdom.

BFHU: AMEN!

Lena: Thankfully though, there is hope and you can have that hope. God offers His grace as a gift for the taking, should you so choose to accept it. How do you accept this gift? You have to BELIEVE that Jesus died for you—and yes—He paid the WHOLE price!

BFHU: Protestants do not believe in the necessity of reparation for their sins. Therefore, they believe that every sinner, no matter how evil their past life will be saved and rewarded in Heaven exactly the same as a person who lived their whole life loving God and trying to please Him. The Catholic Church believes that the Death and Resurrection of Christ is all that is needed for every single human being to be saved, and make it to Heaven, if they will to be saved. Jesus opened the gates to Heaven which no mere human being is or ever was capable of doing. But, in justice, the goodness or the evilness of our lives WILL have consequences and these will be administered to us by the Justice and the Mercy of God. So it is worthwhile to do our best to live a holy life. So, we have nothing to fear but must commend ourselves into the loving hands of God. No matter how evil our life might be however, we can be saved by throwing ourselves upon the mercy of God, even with our last breath.

Lena: We have been bought with the blood of Jesus. How can you begin to believe? You can have faith by reading the Holy Bible—word for word (Romans 10:17).

BFHU: AMEN!

Lena: The Holy Word of God is ALL YOU NEED to know of His truth and of His gift of grace.

BFHU: The Sacred Scriptures are very precious indeed and full of Truth for Salvation. Protestants believe that all they need and should trust is what can be found in Sacred Scripture. They reject any religious teaching they cannot see in scripture. This is a very appealing doctrine because, if it is true ,then I have all I need right in black and white in my Bible. But, there is a problem that even Martin Luther, the founder of the Protestant sects found out about very early in the history of Protestantism. That problem is:

The words of scripture are not self interpreting.

If they were, everyone who ever read them would all come to exactly the same conclusion as to their meaning. However, after 500 years of Protestants believing that every individual is able, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to read Scripture and come to all truth, the fact is, there is NO UNITY. There are over 40,000 different Protestant denominations. And every single one of them proclaim their church to be led by the Holy Spirit. But, since God is not a God of confusion something is wrong.

1 Corinthians 14:33 for God is not a God of confusion but of peace

Either the Holy Spirit has been falling down on the job or the Protestant idea that each person can read the Bible and accurately interpret it is flawed.

Lena: If you choose to decide on accepting His gift of salvation, then you REPENT your sins to Him and to Him ONLY. It is, after all, a private matter that you take up with God. Its no body’s business what your sins are—NOBODY. God can hear you and He knows your heart—so if you are not sincere—He will know it (Acts 1:24).

BFHU: We of course believe that we must repent and turn away from sin in order to accept the gift of salvation as you explain. And there is no fooling God with insincerity. But we would have to disagree about confessing our sins to no one but God because i”t is a private matter.” This clearly contradicts sacred scripture.

James 5:16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another.

In the early church confession was made before the priest and the whole assembly. You really had to humble yourself. But, this was changed to confession privately to the priest to graciously accommodate those weaker souls with the graces of confession, who could not bring themselves to confess before the whole church. The priest, after all, was the one ordained by Jesus to hear confessions with the power to bind and loose in John 20.

John 20: 21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Since it is impossible for a man, even though a priest of God Most High, to forgive or not forgive sin unless he actually hears the confession of sin the Catholic Church sees in this verse of Sacred Scripture the institution of the sacrament of confession.

Lena: And if anybody tells you that God cannot hear you, are themselves going against God—woe to them!. God can hear the prayer of one who wants to repent because it is HIS WILL that you ask for forgiveness (1 John 1:8-9).

BFHU: Amen!

Lena: This is about you and Him—so you need only to pray to HIM and no one else.

BFHU: This is true. We are not obligated to pray to the Saints to ask for their intercession.

Lena: Then go to a “bible following” church which has no doctrines other than following the Word of God and ONLY the Word of God.

BFHU: I know that Lena truly believes what she just said but is unaware of all that every Protestant church actually adopted from the Catholic Church with no questions asked. The table of contents for the New Testament was decided by the Catholic Church. The Doctrine of the Incarnation and the Doctrine of the Trinity was hammered out over centuries by the Catholic Church. The date to celebrate the “Sabbath “, Christmas, and Easter was decided by the Catholic Church.

Lena: Then out of obedience, get BAPTIZED. In baptism you are buried with Christ—when you come out of the water you are rising to a new life (Romans 6:4). You live for Him. The best way to thank Jesus for what He has done is to “serve” Him. And how does one serve our Lord? By doing “works” but this time, it will be under HIS grace through faith and in love with a willingness behind it. There is hope in Jesus.

BFHU: Amen!

Lena: The doctrines and Precepts of the Catholic Church are the doctrines of man. Thankfully, God did not write those doctrines.

BFHU: Well, we of course, believe that our Doctrines and Precepts were infallibly imparted by God through men, exactly as the sacred writing of Holy Scripture were the physical work of man by the infallible power of God. So, if God could write scripture using the hands of men He could write Doctrine and Precepts, Dogma and encyclicals all by the hands of mere men.

Lena: The doctrines of man will change as people and cultures change.

BFHU: This is absolutely true. The English Protestant Church in America (Anglican/Episcopalian) now ordains active homosexuals to their office of Bishop. Many Protestant denominations now ordain women under the pressure of our western culture and some even advocate and authorize homosexual “marriage”. Until the turn of the last century all Christians both Protestant and Catholic denounced contraception as evil. But, the same denomination that ordained a homosexual bishop, was the first to renounce this belief and give the A-OK to the use of contraception. As far as I know every single other Protestant denomination approves of artificial contraception.

It is only the Catholic Church that has not changed her doctrines to suit the prevailing winds of culture for 2000 years. Protestant churches do change. The reason they don’t think they do is because when their church starts going down the road of accommodating the culture and compromising Truth, a remnant will leave the decadent church and start a new one. But, because there is no final authority that speaks for God it is just a matter of time before the new and faithful church will be corrupted by Our Enemy. But Jesus promised that the Gates of Hell would not overcome His Church-The Catholic Church.

Lena: God however, is the same today as He was yesterday, and He will be the same tomorrow. Thats why you can count on HIS WORD—IT NEVER CHANGES.

BFHU: Amen! Thank you . You might find these posts interesting also.

You might find these posts interesting:

Do Catholics Have to Work their Way to Heaven?
Works Salvation/Works Righteousness
Do You Have to Be Baptized to be Saved?
Can We Lose Our Salvation?
Atonement, Salvation, & Temporal Punishment

Mary Worship


Q. I know the Catholic church does not worship Mary or the Saints, but what about the “Catholics” that do?

A. If they are untaught and ignorant of their sin we commend them to the mercy and justice of God; just like everyone else.

Q. There are many “Catholics” in South America who actually DO worship Mary and Saints and blend ancient pagan festivals with Catholic Christian festivals. Does the Catholic church try and teach these “Catholics” the truth about God and Christ’s death on the cross?

A. Absolutely. Sometimes the Church “baptizes” a pagan feast or practice giving it Christian significance instead of the old pagan symbols.This works better than making the new Christians go cold turkey in order to give up comforting and familiar traditions.

So the blending is often done by the Church. How well this is done…how wisely it is done…takes some time. With good catechesis one generation should eradicate the pagan ideas.

But we have an Enemy working against us and sinful human nature as well.But paganism is not to be accepted by any orthodox Catholic. But today we have many in open rebellion and dissent from Christ and His Church.