Is the Roman Catholic Church the one true church founded by Jesus Christ?

The simple answer is that Jesus Christ founded the church which began at Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost and continued in the lives of those who truly belonged to Him and put their faith in Him, no matter what their relationship was to any particular leaders in the visible church structure.

Sadly, institutional church leaders transformed the expression of Christianity from what it was in the days of the apostles – a family of royal priests who knew God personally, to a kind of hierarchical religious institution which came to dominate the people of God and wrote the history books of the church their way.

A concerned Roman Catholic wrote to me, “…we cannot only look at the Bible without looking at the tradition of the
Church. It says in scripture (1 Thess 2:15) “Stand firm in the teachings passed on to you by WORD and in letters.” So
we must also look at the teaching of the Catholic church which Jesus began
. In the purity of the faith, is there any other christian church, group or otherwise that has had the same teachings since the time of Jesus? The Traditions (foundational teachings of the church) of the Catholic Church have been the same since the days of the apostles and nothing has been changed since then. The traditions (small t – or in other words the way things are done) have changed and can continue to change (married priesthood, the language the Holy Mass is celebrated in, etc.).”

And later he writes: “If Peter is not the Rock than why did Jesus call him such, and then say on this rock I will build my church?”

I believe it is really important to address these issues, because the question of religious authority is fundamentally
important. Who or what truly speaks for Christ? Many claim to represent Christ today, and the contradictory claims have caused a great deal of confusion in the world.

The Roman Catholic church does not claim to be merely one valid expression of the Church which Christ founded. It claims to be the church which Christ founded. It claims that it has faithfully preserved the Traditions given to us by
Christ and the apostles, which, although not written in the Scriptures of the New Testament, have equally binding authority upon all who wish to enjoy God’s favor.

The biblical foundation for these ideas is derived from the Roman Catholic understanding of Matthew 16:16-19.

16 And Simon Peter answered and said, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered
and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal [this] to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it. 19 “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (NASB).

Roman Catholics understand this as follows: When Jesus said, “this rock” he meant Peter. Therefore Peter is the rock
upon which the true church of Christ is built. Peter was to receive the keys of the kingdom of heaven, giving him the
authority to make authoritative decrees concerning doctrinal truth, tradition, practice, and to exclude or include people from the Kingdom of Heaven. Peter was therefore the first pope and as bishop of Rome he passed these keys onto a successor, Linus (the second pope). The keys were passed in this way from pope to pope and the full authority of Christ Himself has always been invested in the pope. It follows therefore that anyone not submitting to the pope is in rebellion against God.

Roman Catholics are taught that the Catholic church headquartered at the Vatican in Rome is the only true church.
Many believe that salvation is only to be found in the Catholic church. In the Roman Catholic worldview, the Bible derives its authority from the Church, not the other way around. The Bible is seen as a revelation which must be interpreted in the light of the the Traditions and Dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church. Church Traditions are seen as being oral revelations of equal authority. From this viewpoint, any attempt to use the Bible to show the errors of Catholic tradition is a misuse of the Bible – because it is only really the official living teaching organ of the Church which correctly interprets the true meaning of the Bible.

Roman Catholics argue on the basis of history and Christ’s words that the Catholic Church must be the church of which Jesus spoke, since he promised that “the gates of hell would not prevail against (or overpower) it”. It is clear enough that the view of the Reformers was not the general view of the church during the dark and middle ages. This is seen as proof enough that Jesus was in favor of the views of the Church at this time. To deny this would be to imply that somehow the gates of hell did prevail against the church, which would be a contradiction of Jesus’ own words on the subject.

I invite any Roman Catholics who feel I have misrepresented the Catholic viewpoint in the above paragraphs to e-mail me on this, because it would not be fair on my part to attack a “straw-man” – a misrepresentation of the official Roman Catholic position.

The devil knows that a big lie can sometimes be far more convincing than a small one. Its my conviction that the above doctrine is a Big Lie, and is responsible indirectly for the eternal damnation of millions of souls. This teaching has done more to undermine the authority of the Holy Scriptures than any other I know of. The practical result is that even now the majority of Roman Catholics never bother to read their Bibles. This is because they feel that all they’ll ever need to know and receive from God will come through the teaching and ministry of their church, and not through personal study and consideration of the Scriptures.

Things change in the Roman Catholic Church. In times past, the Bible was forbidden to be translated into languages people could understand. The idea was to have power over people by keeping them ignorant of the Truth. Now many Roman Catholics are actually encouraged to also read their Bibles. So the Roman Catholic church changes over time. Many other examples of how it changes could be given. A lot of conservative Catholics are outraged at some of the statements of the current pope, Francis and there are entire Catholic websites devoted to the idea that the current Roman Catholic Church is apostate. Things keep changing, and most people’s memories are very short. Most people also do not care too much about what the truth is.

Let’s now get down to the issues.

What is the True Identity of the Rock upon which the church
is built?

16 And Simon Peter answered and said, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered
and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal [this] to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 “And I also say to you that you are Peter [Gk: petros – a boulder or stone], and upon this rock [Gk: petra – a large mass of rock] I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it. 19 “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (NASB).

I have heard of two major alternatives to the Roman Catholic identification of the Rock upon which Jesus would build his church. One is that Peter’s confession of Christ is the rock upon which the church is built. That is to say, by “this rock” Jesus meant the foundational revelation that Peter was the first man to confess, that “Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” The second alternative is that the Rock was Jesus himself, while Peter was the first stone to be built upon the rock of Christ in the church which Christ Himself is buliding. This latter interpretation makes more sense to me, because it is in perfect harmony with the tradition which the Scripture itself establishes concerning the spiritual meaning of the word “Rock”.

Allow Scripture to interpret Scripture

An important principle in evangelical thinking is to allow Scripture to interpret Scripture. Since “All Scripture is
inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” it follows that every interpretation of Scripture should be in harmony with the rest of Scripture. The Scriptures have a lot to say about who the rock is. For example:

1 Corinthians 10:4 “and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which
followed them; and the rock was Christ”.

Romans 9:33 just as it is written, “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense, And he who believes  in Him will not be disappointed.”

Habakkuk 1:12 Art Thou not from everlasting, O Lord, my God, my Holy One? We will not die. Thou, O Lord, hast appointed them to judge; And Thou, O Rock , hast established them to correct.

Isaiah 26:4 “Trust in the Lord forever, For in God the Lord, [we have] an everlasting Rock .

Psalm 144:1 (of David.) Blessed be the Lord, my rock , Who trains my hands for war, [And] my fingers for battle;

Psalm 94:22 But the Lord has been my stronghold, And my God the rock of my refuge.

Not only is the Lord God Himself consistently portrayed as the rock throughout both the Old and New Testaments, but the Scriptures go so far as to say that only the Lord God is our rock.

Psalm 62:2 He only is my rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken.

Isaiah 44:8 ‘Do not tremble and do not be afraid; Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it? And you are My witnesses. Is there any God besides Me, Or is there any [other] Rock ? I know of none.’ ”

2 Samuel 22:32 “For who is God, besides the Lord? And who is a rock , besides our God?

The interpretation of the Lord God being our only true rock ties in nicely with the words of the apostle Paul, “For no
other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Christ Jesus” (1 Corinthians 3:11). Truly then, Jesus is the foundation upon which the true church is built, not Peter.

Peter therefore, cannot be the primary rock on which Jesus will build his church. As we will see, Peter himself did not have the stability or the stature to be the foundation rock upon which the eternal church of Christ was to be built. Peter denied the Lord during the trial of Christ. And a few verses later in the Matthew 16 passage Jesus identifies Peter as being inspired by Satan (Matthew 16:23), while in Galatians 2:11 Paul reports an incident which revealed Peter’s ongoing tendency to weakness. According to Paul, Peter was in the wrong and stood condemned, and was not being straight forward about the truth of the gospel! This is hardly the image of a solid infallible rock upon which
all future generations of Christ church were to be built. Only Jesus Himself can carry that weight, and thank God, He does.

It seems to me that Roman Catholics have taken their conception of Peter as the rock upon which they build their
entire system. Church history reveals the moral depths to which these so-called vicars of Christ have fallen. I’m not sure it is edifying to go into a full list of these things, but if it turns out to be important to some of my readers I may make the effort to document this on another web-page. In any case, it seems that common sense as well as the Bible itself would indicate that Jesus was not meaning that Peter was the rock upon which he would build his church. We can all freely acknowledge that Peter had a key role in the development of the early church and that he did have a great deal of spiritual authority from Christ. This is beyond dispute. But the Roman Catholic position goes far
beyond this, and in so doing, gets our eyes of Christ and onto men, something which is never advisable for those wishing to build a solid and enduring relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

It is also interesting to note that Peter certainly did not fit into the current conception of a pope, since he had a mother-in-law, meaning he was married. Read Mark 1:30, which speaks of “Simon’s wife’s mother”. The topic of celibate priesthood is outside the scope of the current discussion, but it is another aberration from the plain teaching of Scripture (1 Timothy 3:2-4; 1 Timothy 4:2).

Incidentally, the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven were not given exclusively to Peter. The same authority of binding and loosing were given to all Jesus’ disciples in Matthew 18:18. All Jesus’ disciples have the authority to use his Name, and the truth is, Jesus never gave anyone the authority to abrogate (nullify) His own plain words and teachings.

Did the Gates of Hell Prevail Against the Church Christ Built?

The reasoning of the Roman Catholic church is circular on this point, because they assume and do not prove from Scripture that  Jesus was describing their system as “His church”. Their point would be powerful if they could prove that at some point in history there were no disciples of Christ who did not acknowledge the bishop of Rome as their supreme pontiff. However, history just doesn’t support this view. The supremacy of the roman bishop indeed rose because of the political power of Rome as the capital of the empire, but there were always groups of Christian disciples who did not hold to the doctrine of the papacy. The doctrine of the papacy wasn’t really spelled out
until the time of Gregory the Great in any case, in the 6th century.

The Eastern Orthodox church, for all its weaknesses, doubtless did include many true believers in Christ, and the schism which was formalised in the 11th century between Rome and the Orthodox church based principally at Constantinople reflected a major difference in opinion concerning the authority of roman bishops that had been going on already for centuries. At that time the pope and the Patriarch at Constantinople basically excommunicated
each other because of their differences – a natural outcome of their common rejection of the Word of God as their highest and supreme authority. For their man-made traditions had evolved in different directions and because of this neither could accept the other as truly being of God.

Apart from this, I’m sure there were many Christian churches, such as the Celtic churches in the British Isles and many nameless faceless Christian groups with no political power who enjoyed the life of Christ without seeing the pope as their spiritual Father. (Incidentally Jesus himself taught against the use of the word “father” as a spiritual title for men (Matthew 23:9). I have never heard any reasonable Roman Catholic explanation on why this verse has been apparently abrogated in the favor of popes and priests!). In the middle ages various groups such as the Waldeneses, the followers of John Huss, Wycliffe and others were faithful believers in Christ and suffered cruel persecution for their stand against the roman catholic tyrants of the day.

Furthermore there were obviously people in the Roman Catholic system itself who, for all their loyalty to the pope, had a revelation of the true Christ and were truly the Lord’s children. A shining example of Christian discipleship was St. Francis of Assissi. Whichever way we look at it, the church was not utterly defeated by Satan at any time although obviously there were some pretty dark moments.

God has always had a faithful remnant, and today they number in the hundreds of millions – a fact for which we may praise God. Truly the gates of hell have not overcome the true church of Christ. Believers in Christ are more than ever on the increase today and with the increase of knowledge that is upon us today there is no way that we will ever return to the Dark Ages where men just simply did not have access to the Bible in their own language to check out things for themselves.

I hope it is noticed that I am not arguing that all believers who identified with Rome were not real Christians. I am sure than many Roman Catholics today are true born again Christians. But this is true in spite of, not because of the teaching of the Roman Catholic church.

If Matthew 16:16-19 does not mean what the Roman Catholic church says it means, then what does it mean? We can get plenty of valuable truth out of Matthew 16:16-19. Firstly, God the Father Himself revealed to Peter the true identity of Jesus as being the promised Messiah, or Christ – the one whom God sent to save the people from their sins. Secondly, this had nothing to do with the fact that Peter saw Jesus physically as a man. This makes this kind of revelation available to us also. It is timeless. Thirdly, Peter confessed with his mouth the revelation which he received from God the Father. Fourthly, Jesus pronounced a blessing on Peter on account of this revelation of who Jesus was.

We too will be blessed if we received from God a true revelation of who Christ is and then confess Him before others.
The surest way to open yourself up for such a revelation is to read the Bible for yourself with an open heart and mind. The Bible says, “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9). If you have not done this I urge you to believe the teaching of this Scripture here and begin to openly confess Jesus Christ as your Lord and Master in all you say and do.

What do YOU think?

comments

About Michael Fackerell

The Christian faith is about Jesus. He came to save the lost. About Jesus Christ, Bible teaching, Testimonies, Salvation, Prayer, Faith, Networking.

Comments

  1. superman says:

    Catholic church does exactly what Pharisees did
    Mark 7:1 The Pharisees and some of the teachers of the law who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus 2 and saw some of his disciples eating food with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed. 3 (The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they give their hands a ceremonial washing, holding to the tradition of the elders. 4 When they come from the marketplace they do not eat unless they wash. And they observe many other traditions.)
    5 So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?”
    6 He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: “‘These people honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
    7 They worship me in vain;
    their teachings are merely human rules.’

    8 You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions

    • froggyjr695 says:

      Dear Brother’s and Sisters in Christ Jesus, it can not be emphasized enough how important it is to read the word of God daily and study it vigulantly for yourself. The Enemy, Satan, that crafty serpent of old, is much to smart and cunning for you not to fall victim to his many elaborate deceptions he has inundated the christian world with today. So put on the full armor of God so through Jesus, you might overcome the world and be the “new Creature” He wants to make you.

  2. docindahouse says:

    A lot of words…I ain´t got nothing to say, but what is in my heart. Jesus saved me only two years ago.
    I have been baptized as a baby, had all the sacraments, my familiy also…why didn´t it help me? And my family…so much CURSING God, and everything that was supposed to be ˝sacred˝. Why? Why did they live in fear and depression? The depression that almost made me take my life ? And with all that, I got to a point where I did not want to live. Then something happened. A MIRACLE. I took a New Testament i had, a pocket sized one. I had it because I did not know what to do with it. I started to read…OH THE JOY!!! The life that came trough me, the peace, the love, the desire to live and be close to my KING, and only to HIM, and no one else…that is the truth. It is why I get up in the morning. I am happy when I think about the fact the One who died for me is so close to me. And no one can take that away. Ever.
    I am the living proof that His Word is ALIVE and has the power to change everything. I know I can have Jesus Christ as my Savior without anything or anyone standing between. Nobody taught me that. No denomination, no man, no ceremony…
    I am in a baptist church now, completely confident that He lead me there.
    I respect all denominations, including RC. Whoever loves Jesus is a brother of mine. But will I let you stand between me and Jesus? The only life I ever had? NO.
    Nevertheless, sometimes I attend mass, ( when I oversleep going to my church) because I do not think it is worthless, who am I to judge ones heart? But I do attend having a desire to have a wonderful experience with God. It is what counts. I do feel more comfortable when I attend in BC.
    I was craving for LIFE. My country is mostly Catholic. My friends…why arent they happy? Why do they destroy themselves with alcohol and sex?
    I have to stress, there ARE true believers that are in RC, and I appreciate them a lot.

    The LIGHT shined into my life. Rose me from the dead. Forever. I know that as I know that I breath the air around me. What difference does it make if I am in my own room, or if I somehow ˝give authority to RC˝ ( I cannot understand that concept, how can it make my everyday life closer to God? )
    Now I do not see a point to living in this world without having a direct connection to Jesus. HE IS TOO WONDERFUL.
    No matter how flawed I am, I do love Him.
    I wish nobody to respond to this. I am tired of people trying to separate me from Christ with foolish teachings. Trying to break my heart again. Cannot happen. So sorry.

  3. andrews1975 says:

    Dear Brother,

    The Catholic Church teaches that all apostles have been given authority,

    Matthew 18 15″If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. 16But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

     18″I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

    In saying this to all the Apostles, all were present and in union, it is in the context of the Church dealing with particular situations and declaring what it is we are to believe and practice as believers, it’s in that context that Jesus says whatever you (that is the Church, plural) bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. So they all receive what the Church teaches as a collegial authority.

    However, prior to that in Matthew 16 13When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”

    14They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”

    15″But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

    16Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

    17Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. 18And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” 20Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.

    St Peter is given an unique authority, by himself, whatever “YOU” (singular to Peter) bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever “YOU” (singular to Peter) loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

    So the Catholic Church has always taught for 2000+ years, that all of the successors of the bishops have a collegial authority to speak the infallible word of God.

    The Catholic Church doesn’t take a scripture verse/passage out of context, lift it out and absolute it to the detriment of others, but takes all of sacred scripture together and places it within its proper context. Peter alone, not the apostles, Peter alone was given this unique authority. Peter exercises it alone but the other apostles (the Church) can use the same authority if they are in union with Peter.

    Some Protestants say that when Jesus said to Peter that you are the rock, he doesn’t really mean that Peter is the rock. Protestants generally have two interpretations of this text:

    A) They will say that the rock is not Peter but is Jesus and quote 1 Corinthians 3″11For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.”  or 1 Corinthians 10:4 “4and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.” See they say you Catholics have got it all wrong; Jesus is the rock, not Peter. Some even go as far to say that when Christ says to Peter and on this rock I will build my church he was in fact pointing His finger at Himself while saying it.

    This interpretation is reinforced from the Protestant pulpits when they say that when Jesus said you are the rock, he actually names Peter Petros (changing his name from Simon to Peter), which in greek means a little stone. See they say Peter is only a little rock, a little stone. But upon Petra (a massive boulder), Jesus says, I will build my church.

    B) Christ is not talking about Peter, but about his faith being the (small) rock upon which Christ will build his Church. Those that make a confession in Christ (small rock) as Peter did, Jesus will then build His (big rock) church upon them.

    Those are the two main arguments and on the surface can look persuading. But underpinning both of these arguments is that Petros is a small rock and Petra is a large rock. So let’s begin there, as we can dismiss this quite quickly (there are at least 15 explanations that can dismiss this).

    (i) We need to understand that in the Greek New Testament, the words Petros and Petra and simply the Masculine and Feminine of the same word, they are NOT TWO DIFFERENT WORDS, with two different meanings, they do not mean small rock and big rock. This is matter of fact. But if you would like a protestant scholar source for this find yourself a copy of the IVP Bible Background Commentary by Craig S. Keener and turn to Page 90. Quoting “in Greek here they (referring to Petros and Petra) are cognate terms that were used interchangeably by this period”. Scholars agree that there was a distinction between these two terms around 8-4th century B.C. but even then only found in poetry (and not in prose), after that time these were terms used interchangeably. The New Testament is written in Greek used between 323-476 A.D. Petra could not serve as a masculine name, because it was a feminine noun, many of those that have taken French, Spanish, Italian, and Greek will know nouns are assigned gender. So that is why Peters name is assigned the masculine (Petra) whilst the noun (upon this Rock) is given its rightful Feminine prose.

    (ii) Still not convinced the Catholics have got it right? Perhaps one of the most respected Greek Scholars amongst Evangelicals is Gerhard Kittel, in his Greek Theological dictionary says “the obvious pun which has made its way into the Greek text suggests a material identity between Petra and Petros as it is impossible to differentiate strictly between the two words. Only the fairly assured Aramaic original enables us to assert with confidence the formal and material  identity between Petra and Petros, Pertra equals Kefa which equals Petros. Petros himself is this Petra, not just his faith or his confession. The idea of the reformers that He was referring to the faith of Peter is quite inconceivable, for there is no reference here to the faith of Peter, rather the parallelism of that are rock and upon this rock I will build shows the second rock can only be referring to Peter, to whom he has given the name rock. To this extent Roman Catholic Exegesis is right and all Protestant attempts to evade this interpretation are to be rejected.”    

    (iii)Brothers and sisters there is virtually no protestant scholarship left that denies Peter is the rock, the real issue is the Papacy and Petrine authority, it is no longer about whether Peter is the rock the biblical evidence for Jesus establishing Peter as the rock and visible foundation of the Church is now so overwhelming that we find more and more protestant scholars and even some pastors acknowledge this to be true.

    However, once that roadblock is out of the way another is thrown up Protestants then go on to say “Well, the authority of Peter died with him; there was no successor to Peter.”So let’s look at that then.

    The dogma of apostolic succession, the gift of the apostle, is one of the five ministries that St Paul describes as existing in the Church Ephesians 3 :21 “to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” This church that St Paul is describing tells us that this Church will include Ephesians 4 11 “It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers“, but hang on some Protestants might say, this list doesn’t include bishop, isn’t the Pope the Bishop of Rome and doesn’t the Roman Catholic Church have Bishops?  The office of Bishop is the office of Apostle Successor, okay but where’s that in scripture? Acts 1:20 20″For,” said Peter, “it is written in the book of Psalms,” ‘May his place be deserted; let there be no one to dwell in it,’ and, ” ‘May another take his place of leadership.” So Judas Apostolic place was taken by succession and his post did not die with him.  

    The images of the keys in Matthew 16 would have been very familiar to the Jews of Jesus’ days if you go back to Isaiah 22 20-22 you see where this image comes from  20 “In that day I will summon my servant, Eliakim son of Hilkiah. 21 I will clothe him with your robe and fasten your sash around him and hand your authority over to him. He will be a father to those who live in Jerusalem and to the house of Judah. 22 I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open”, the office of keyholder under old testament Judaism was the prime minister under the king, who does our king give the keys? He gave the keys to Peter.

    Once you start to see that Peter is the prime minister to our King, you can see from the Bible that the prime minister was given the authority to speak on behalf of the king, we can also see that this office has successors. In Isaiah the office did not cease to exist when the prime minister is removed.  Wouldn’t God want to leave his people with a successor so his people could hear a sure and certain word as it was with the Old Testament wouldn’t it be so even more in the New?

    The prelude to Peter’s unique authority is when he is allowed to walk on water and when his faith faltered Jesus did not allow him to go under and is a prelude to Jesus promising to give His authority to Peter.

    Still not convinced?

    1) Look at John 21 11”Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn.” Peter pulled the fish (the symbol for Christians) to the shore by himself with such supernatural strength; have you ever lifted just one large fish? and note the NET was not torn.

    2) When St Peter takes the helm when deciding how to replace Judus’ roll.

    3) In Acts 15, when everyone was arguing St Peter arose, declared the truth of the matter and then everyone shut up.  The matter was settled by the one shepherd given to the Church and then St James says “”Brothers, listen to me. 14Simon has described to us how God at first showed his concern by taking from the Gentiles a people for himself.” Peter is at the helm, Peter has declared and then at vs 19 “19″It is my judgment, therefore, that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God. 20Instead we should write to them, telling them to abstain from food polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals and from blood.” St James sets into motion the order.

    4) Matthew 10:2 “2These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; 3Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.” Notice the listing of apostles, Peter is always listed first. Innocuous you say? It’s not a Alphabetical list, it’s not a chronological list (Peter was not the first called by Christ it was St Andrew), but it’s a list in the sense of authority. Peter is represented first in this listing just as he is represented in the entire New Testament.

    To all who may read may God richly bless you and your families.

    • Matt1078 says:

       

      Dear Brother

      Does not the use of the word (POPE) contradict scripture itself?
      *
      The pope (from Latin: papa; from Greek: πάππας[1] (pappas),[2] an
      affectionate word for father) is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him
      the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church
      *
      9  And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your
      Father, which is in heaven.
      10  Neither be ye called masters: for one
      is your Master, even Christ.
      11  But he that is greatest among you
      shall be your servant.
      12  And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be
      abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
      *
      Therefore from scripture, we find the Catholic Church, in direct
      opposition to what scripture does say.
      Right from the beginning, the Catholic
      Church set up men, in the position of (POPE), then within every Catholic Church,
      (Priests), also being called (FATHER).
       *
      As far as your arguments about the name (PETER), and his gaining of
      Authority beyond what the other
      Disciples attained.
      If Peter did gain
      such Authority, why then did he only write ( 2 ) of the Books in the Bible?  

      Peter didn’t even give us his account of Jesus life, and ministry in a
      Gospel.
      If Peter was such a leader, why then didn’t he set out most of the
      doctrines, instead of Paul?
      ETC., ETC., ETC.
      *
      The Catholic Church has taken ( 1 ) verse out of context, thereby
      building a Hierarchy out of it, supposedly giving itself Authority by doing
      so.
      *
      May God richly bless you, and your Catholic families
      also
      • andrews1975 says:

        Dear Brother Matt,

        “Therefore from scripture, we find the Catholic Church, in direct
        opposition to what scripture does say.Right from the beginning, the Catholic Church set up men, in the position of (POPE), then within every Catholic Church, (Priests), also being called (FATHER).”

        To understand why this charge does not work, one must first understand the use of the word “father” in reference to our earthly fathers. No one would deny a little girl the opportunity to tell someone that she loves her father. Common sense tells us that Jesus wasn’t forbidding this type of use of the word “father.”

        In fact, to forbid it would rob the address “Father” of its meaning when applied to God, for there would no longer be any earthly counterpart for the analogy of divine Fatherhood. The concept of God’s role as Father would be meaningless if we obliterated the concept of earthly fatherhood.

        But in the Bible the concept of fatherhood is not restricted to just our earthly fathers and God. It is used to refer to people other than biological or legal fathers, and is used as a sign of respect to those with whom we have a special relationship.

        For example, Joseph tells his brothers of a special fatherly relationship God had given him with the king of Egypt: “So it was not you who sent me here, but God; and he has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house and ruler over all the land of Egypt” (Gen. 45:8).

        Job indicates he played a fatherly role with the less fortunate: “I was a father to the poor, and I searched out the cause of him whom I did not know” (Job 29:16). And God himself declares that he will give a fatherly role to Eliakim, the steward of the house of David: “In that day I will call my servant Eliakim, the son of Hilkiah . . . and I will clothe him with [a] robe, and will bind [a] girdle on him, and will commit . . . authority to his hand; and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the house of Judah” (Is. 22:20–21).

        This type of fatherhood not only applies to those who are wise counselors (like Joseph) or benefactors (like Job) or both (like Eliakim), it also applies to those who have a fatherly spiritual relationship with one. For example, Elisha cries, “My father, my father!” to Elijah as the latter is carried up to heaven in a whirlwind (2 Kgs. 2:12). Later, Elisha himself is called a father by the king of Israel (2 Kgs. 6:21). 

        A Change with the New Testament?

        Some Fundamentalists argue that this usage changed with the New Testament—that while it may have been permissible to call certain men “father” in the Old Testament, since the time of Christ, it’s no longer allowed. This argument fails for several reasons.

        First, as we’ve seen, the imperative “call no man father” does not apply to one’s biological father. It also doesn’t exclude calling one’s ancestors “father,” as is shown in Acts 7:2, where Stephen refers to “our father Abraham,” or in Romans 9:10, where Paul speaks of “our father Isaac.”

        Second, there are numerous examples in the New Testament of the term “father” being used as a form of address and reference, even for men who are not biologically related to the speaker. There are, in fact, so many uses of “father” in the New Testament, that the Fundamentalist interpretation of Matthew 23 (and the objection to Catholics calling priests “father”) must be wrong, as we shall see.

        Third, a careful examination of the context of Matthew 23 shows that Jesus didn’t intend for his words here to be understood literally. The whole passage reads, “But you are not to be called ‘rabbi,’ for you have one teacher, and you are all brethren. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called ‘masters,’ for you have one master, the Christ” (Matt. 23:8–10).

        The first problem is that although Jesus seems to prohibit the use of the term “teacher,” in Matthew 28:19–20, Christ himself appointed certain men to be teachers in his Church: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations . . . teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” Paul speaks of his commission as a teacher: “For this I was appointed a preacher and apostle . . . a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth” (1 Tim. 2:7); “For this gospel I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher” (2 Tim. 1:11). He also reminds us that the Church has an office of teacher: “God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers” (1 Cor. 12:28); and “his gifts were that some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers” (Eph. 4:11). There is no doubt that Paul was not violating Christ’s teaching in Matthew 23 by referring so often to others as “teachers.”

        Fundamentalists themselves slip up on this point by calling all sorts of people “doctor,” for example, medical doctors, as well as professors and scientists who have Ph.D. degrees (i.e., doctorates). What they fail to realize is that “doctor” is simply the Latin word for “teacher.” Even “Mister” and “Mistress” (“Mrs.”) are forms of the word “master,” also mentioned by Jesus. So if his words in Matthew 23 were meant to be taken literally, Fundamentalists would be just as guilty for using the word “teacher” and “doctor” and “mister” as Catholics for saying “father.” But clearly, that would be a misunderstanding of Christ’s words. 

        So What Did Jesus Mean?

        Jesus criticized Jewish leaders who love “the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues, and salutations in the market places, and being called ‘rabbi’ by men” (Matt. 23:6–7). His admonition here is a response to the Pharisees’ proud hearts and their g.asping after marks of status and prestige.

        He was using hyperbole (exaggeration to make a point) to show the scribes and Pharisees how sinful and proud they were for not looking humbly to God as the source of all authority and fatherhood and teaching, and instead setting themselves up as the ultimate authorities, father figures, and teachers.

        Christ used hyperbole often, for example when he declared, “If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell” (Matt. 5:29, cf. 18:9; Mark 9:47). Christ certainly did not intend this to be applied literally, for otherwise all Christians would be blind amputees! (cf. 1 John 1:8; 1 Tim. 1:15). We are all subject to “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16).

        Since Jesus is demonstrably using hyperbole when he says not to call anyone our father—else we would not be able to refer to our earthly fathers as such—we must read his words carefully and with sensitivity to the presence of hyperbole if we wish to understand what he is saying.

        Jesus is not forbidding us to call men “fathers” who actually are such—either literally or spiritually. (See below on the apostolic example of spiritual fatherhood.) To refer to such people as fathers is only to acknowledge the truth, and Jesus is not against that. He is warning people against inaccurately attributing fatherhood—or a particular kind or degree of fatherhood—to those who do not have it.

        As the apostolic example shows, some individuals genuinely do have a spiritual fatherhood, meaning that they can be referred to as spiritual fathers. What must not be done is to confuse their form of spiritual paternity with that of God. Ultimately, God is our supreme protector, provider, and instructor. Correspondingly, it is wrong to view any individual other than God as having these roles.

        Throughout the world, some people have been tempted to look upon religious leaders who are mere mortals as if they were an individual’s supreme source of spiritual instruction, nourishment, and protection. The tendency to turn mere men into “gurus” is worldwide.

        This was also a temptation in the Jewish world of Jesus’ day, when famous rabbinical leaders, especially those who founded important schools, such as Hillel and Shammai, were highly exalted by their disciples. It is this elevation of an individual man—the formation of a “cult of personality” around him—of which Jesus is speaking when he warns against attributing to someone an undue role as master, father, or teacher.

        He is not forbidding the perfunctory use of honorifics nor forbidding us to recognize that the person does have a role as a spiritual father and teacher. The example of his own apostles shows us that. 

        The Apostles Show the Way

        The New Testament is filled with examples of and references to spiritual father-son and father-child relationships. Many people are not aware just how common these are, so it is worth quoting some of them here.

        Paul regularly referred to Timothy as his child: “Therefore I sent to you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ” (1 Cor. 4:17); “To Timothy, my true child in the faith: grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord” (1 Tim. 1:2); “To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord” (2 Tim. 1:2).

        He also referred to Timothy as his son: “This charge I commit to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophetic utterances which pointed to you, that inspired by them you may wage the good warfare” (1 Tim 1:18); “You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 2:1); “But Timothy’s worth you know, how as a son with a father he has served with me in the gospel” (Phil. 2:22).

        Paul also referred to other of his converts in this way: “To Titus, my true child in a common faith: grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior” (Titus 1:4); “I appeal to you for my child, Onesimus, whose father I have become in my imprisonment” (Philem. 10). None of these men were Paul’s literal, biological sons. Rather, Paul is emphasizing his spiritual fatherhood with them. 

         Spiritual Fatherhood

        Perhaps the most pointed New Testament reference to the theology of the spiritual fatherhood of priests is Paul’s statement, “I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel” (1 Cor. 4:14–15).

        Peter followed the same custom, referring to Mark as his son: “She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark” (1 Pet. 5:13). The apostles sometimes referred to entire churches under their care as their children. Paul writes, “Here for the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be a burden, for I seek not what is yours but you; for children ought not to lay up for their parents, but parents for their children” (2 Cor. 12:14); and, “My little children, with whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you!” (Gal. 4:19).

        John said, “My little children, I am writing this to you so that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1); “No greater joy can I have than this, to hear that my children follow the truth” (3 John 4). In fact, John also addresses men in his congregations as “fathers” (1 John 2:13–14).

        By referring to these people as their spiritual sons and spiritual children, Peter, Paul, and John imply their own roles as spiritual fathers. Since the Bible frequently speaks of this spiritual fatherhood, we Catholics acknowledge it and follow the custom of the apostles by calling priests “father.” Failure to acknowledge this is a failure to recognize and honor a great gift God has bestowed on the Church: the spiritual fatherhood of the priesthood.

        Catholics know that as members of a parish, they have been committed to a priest’s spiritual care, thus they have great filial affection for priests and call them “father.” Priests, in turn, follow the apostles’ biblical example by referring to members of their flock as “my son” or “my child” (cf. Gal. 4:19; 1 Tim. 1:18; 2 Tim. 2:1; Philem. 10; 1 Pet. 5:13; 1 John 2:1; 3 John 4).

        All of these passages were written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and they express the infallibly recorded truth that Christ’s ministers do have a role as spiritual fathers. Jesus is not against acknowledging that. It is he who gave these men their role as spiritual fathers, and it is his Holy Spirit who recorded this role for us in the pages of Scripture. To acknowledge spiritual fatherhood is to acknowledge the truth, and no amount of anti-Catholic grumbling will change that fact.

        “If Peter did gain such Authority, why then did he only write ( 2 ) of the Books in the Bible?”

        Brother, the apostles didn’t sit down and decide to write a book. The New Testament is a compilation of sacred scripture, as defined by the Catholic Church. Please put this question into the context of the time when writings were uncommon and illiteracy was rife. The gospel was typically handed down by Oral tradition. Jewish religious instruction relied on oral tradition. Even the Torah was read according to oral tradition. The Torah was written as one long word without spaces, punctuation, or vowels-it was literally the word of God. Rabbinical students learned how to read the text by listening to their elders read it over and over again. Rabbis disliked targums because they encouraged private interpretation of Scripture and undermined divinely-authorised oral teaching authority (cf. Matt. 23:2-3: Christ commands the people to respect their teaching authority, but not their lived example). The Catholic Church has kept both the Oral and Written tradition as handed down from the apostles (all is the word of God).

        But if we were to expand on the measure assigned to this question then  either St Paul had the Authority, as he is the author of most of sacred scripture contained within the New Testament (which is not scriptural nor handed down by tradition) or their is NO authority which is a contradiction to the very authority that Jesus gave to the apostles. Scripture is clear that Jesus did not give authority to everyone, he gave a unique authority to Peter and then to the Church.

        There is ample evidence in the New Testament that Peter was first in authority among the apostles. Whenever they were named, Peter headed the list (Matt. 10:1-4, Mark 3:16-19, Luke 6:14-16, Acts 1:13); sometimes the apostles were referred to as “Peter and those who were with him” (Luke 9:32). Peter was the one who generally spoke for the apostles (Matt. 18:21, Mark 8:29, Luke 12:41, John 6:68-69), and he figured in many of the most dramatic scenes (Matt. 14:28-32, Matt. 17:24-27, Mark 10:23-28). On Pentecost it was Peter who first preached to the crowds (Acts 2:14-40), and he worked the first healing in the Church age (Acts 3:6-7). It is Peter’s faith that will strengthen his brethren (Luke 22:32) and Peter is given Christ’s flock to shepherd (John 21:17). An angel was sent to announce the resurrection to Peter (Mark 16:7), and the risen Christ first appeared to Peter (Luke 24:34). He headed the meeting that elected Matthias to replace Judas (Acts 1:13-26), and he received the first converts (Acts 2:41). He inflicted the first punishment (Acts 5:1-11), and excommunicated the first heretic (Acts 8:18-23). He led the first council in Jerusalem (Acts 15), and announced the first dogmatic decision (Acts 15:7-11). It was to Peter that the revelation came that Gentiles were to be baptized and accepted as Christians (Acts 10:46-48).

         

        Brother I hope this helps and God bless you and for the journey 🙂

         

         

         

        • Matt1078 says:

          Dear Brother Andrew
           
          Jesus criticized Jewish leaders who loved “the place of honor at feasts and
          the best seats in the synagogues, and salutations in the market places, and
          being called ‘rabbi’ by men” (Matt. 23:6–7).
          His admonition here is a response to the Pharisees’ proud hearts and their
          grasping after marks of status and prestige. We find the same thing taking place
          in the Catholic Church.
          Jesus was showing the scribes and Pharisees how
          sinful and proud they were for not looking humbly to God
          as the source of
          all authority, and fatherhood and teaching, but instead setting themselves up as
          the ultimate authorities, father figures, and teachers.
          No Hyperbole intended
          here, this is exactly the point, these men set themselves up as the ultimate
          authorities, father figures, and teachers. (PRIEST, MONSENIOR, BISHOP, CARDINAL,
          POPE) Jesus warns people against inaccurately attributing fatherhood, or a
          particular kind or degree of fatherhood, to those who do not have it.
          I do not say these men have taken upon themselves this false authority, I
          say the Catholic Church itself has
          assigned this (FATHERHOOD), in order to appear to mankind as having the
          authority that no other Religion has. 
          When speaking to a Pastor, he is addressed as Pastor, which is the office
          he holds, not a synonym for Father, he may also be called BROTHER, because we
          are all the children of God, we are all equals in His sight. That is the point
          Jesus was making when he said “Call no man Father”.
          As Warrior Daughter has said, “you are very skilled in your defense of the
          RC church” I have found that you only use quotes from others, you never speak
          your own beliefs, if you say you believe all that you have quoted, then you are
          a blind follower of the blind teaching.
          You need to learn to speak out of you own heart the things The Holy Spirit
          has taught you, not just parroting what everybody else has said is the
          truth.
          May the scales of your blindness fall away, revealing the truth to your
          soul.
          Your Salvation is not in a Religion, Church, or the Traditions of
          men.
          Your Salvation is in Jesus Christ.
          Be Blessed
          Matt

          • horns4plenty says:

                 A lot of information on this website is amazing and is truly ordained by God. But what amazes me more is the conditions of God’s people where they will spend more time attacking traditions of men or defending traditions of men than seeking to have a one on one relationship with the creator of this universe. We would rather occupy our time to make a point to force our way of thinking on others instead of occupy our time pressing in to know the ways of Jesus and his Father. It would make a lot more sense to occupy our time pressing in to know the Lord with all our hearts and taking all our thoughts captive to expose the deception of spiritual influences in our lives that come at us everyday to try and deceive us and get us off the path and keep our hearts and minds from being conformed to the image and likeness of Christ.

                Jesus does not regard the religious traditions of men in the same regard that we have as Christians. Most of the time God refers to the religious traditions of men as worthless. But still we will spend so much of our time defending our religious traditions, but we will refer to it as defending the faith. My question for all of you is what faith? Are you more concerned about justifying your Baptist, Methodist, Church of Christ, Assemblies of God, Catholic, Pentecostal, Charismatic, Episcopal, or many other doctrines out there that glorify man, or a group of men? I thought we where supposed to glorify God! There is not one doctrine out there that can give you a formula to heaven or teach you to be one with God. You can not substitute religion for relationship. You can not profess words with meaning if it does not truly come from the heart.

                 In deliverance we have watched demonic entities confess Jesus Christ as Lord. Then we have watched those demons go on to say, But He is not my Lord. We have watched demonic entities confess large passages of the bible and twist them just ever so slightly in the same way that religious traditions have twisted the scriptures to justify their view point and their reason to operate. At some point Christians have got to realize that every voice that comes into their mind is not from God. And if it is telling you to defend your Baptist tradition or attack the catholic hierarchy it may not be from God. Jesus told his disciples concerning the Sadducees and Pharisees to leave them alone. There are much greater issues out there right now than who’s biblical doctrine is more sound. Concentrating on working out your salvation with fear and trembling makes a lot more sense.

                 We had a couple come up this passed week from Guatemala and they are staying in the U.S. for several more weeks and have several more churches they are going to visit before they return back home. God is using this married couple to reach people for Christ in a mighty way for the kingdom. The husband has a real anointing in the area of the prophetic. It is almost a scary anointing for lack of a better word to describe. This couple has completely sold out to serving the Lord with all their heart and it has cost them everything to follow Christ. My father had the husband and wife a short testimony of what is going on in their lives and where they have come from. They spoke for a hour but probably could have spoken for 8 hours straight and barely scratched the surface, and I bet a lot of people would have stayed to listen, but by then church had already pressed into the four hour mark and my father was trying to be sensitive to those working with the children. The husband which I am going to refer to as (Sam) gave his testimony. He has been a believer now for seven years and God mightily delivered him out of the occult. You see Sam came from a broken home and was introduced into the occult at age ten. By the time he was 19 he had become a priest in Satanism. He was priest and or high priest in the occult for 13 years and participated in everything from animal sacrifice to human sacrifice, before God miraculous delivered this man out of the occult, and brothers sisters I do mean miraculously. His testimony of salvation, healing, and deliverance may be the most powerful displays of God’s power that I have ever heard about and ranks up there with deliverance or healing in the bible. Sam and his wife have been truly transformed into a new creation and they are serving the Lord with all of their hearts souls and mind to pull down the demonic strongholds and lies and deceptions operating in other peoples lives. Sam and his wife truly have a servants heart for the Lord and cares nothing about promoting his own agenda or reputation but is only about serving the Lord Jesus Christ with everything he has. He serves as my father personal interpreter every time my father goes to Guatemala to preach the gospel.

                 But listen guys here is the deal. Satan and those that have willingly chosen to serve him and the powers of darkness are way more serious and way more organized in this spiritual battle than the church in this country has ever thought about being. They play for keeps and it is life or death. Their are very powerful covens operating in United States that through demonic spirits teach their people how to infiltrate the church and live a double life in society. This has been going on for years and years and they are very good at what they do. They usually are some of the most respected and powerful voices in the church. They are deacons, elders, pastors, Sunday school teachers, regular members, doctors, lawyers, nurses, mayors, judges, city council, board of education, policeman, politicians, business owners, and many other professions. The average professing Christian would have know clue how to detect them from anybody else. What is even sadder, is even if the average believer could detect them they would be powerless to do anything because the average believer has no clue about spiritual warfare and how to pull down or destroy demonic strongholds operating in their own life much less anybody else’s. But Satan on the other hand has taught these individuals how to reek havoc in the church causing bitterness, disputes, child abuse, child molestation, sickness, curses, adultery, gossip, strife, marital strife, divorce, religious pride, approval of man, lying, and even death. Meanwhile, God’s army of believers, who have been deceived into seeking the ways of man via religious traditions instead of the ways of God are just zzzzz zzzzz zzzzzz zzzzz zzzzzzz zzzzzz zzzzz zzzzzz. Instead of burying your face in God’s word, getting on your hands and knees and repenting and crying out for God’s forgiveness and favor and walking in the truth you know and readying yourself for war.

                 Do you think what is going on in this nation is by accident. Satan’s army many who are very dedicated, well organized and ferocious in their warfare. God’s army right now is disorganized, double minded, carnal, quarrelsome, self seeking, indulgent, rebellious, uncaring, and clueless. But we will let that religious pride jump up into our minds and we will spout off a bunch of religious garbage that profits absolutely nothing. Meanwhile the violence in this nation continues to escalate, murder, rape, incest, drug addiction, child pornography and molestation. Meanwhile idolatry, covetousness, and homosexuality has become a way of life not only in America, but in the churches. Your religious freedoms are disappearing left and right and the church goes ho hum, no big deal it is so good to be the redeemed of the Lord. I am sure ready for the rapture God to take me out of all this. I have post blogs on this web site of what salvation is really all about which where largely ignored, but some body can post on religion and then everybody has a opinion. How sad! Satan has really done a number on the body of Christ.

                 Before I close I am going to post a vision from a another prophetic aquaintenance of mine who is also completely committed to serving the Lord with all his heart. His wife and he travel all over the world teaching spiritual warfare and deliverance to the body. But he also is not welcome to set foot on most churches property in America because they threaten the religious orgy the church of America is so proud of having with the world.

            February 6, 2004 (the first day of the full moon)

            I, Daniel was lying on my bed unable to sleep. All evening I had become increasingly aware of a terrible

            battle going on in the spirit realm. This made me so restless that I could not sleep. Suddenly, an angel

            appeared beside me. He took my hand and said, “Come, you must look and hear, and then tell others.”

            Immediately I was taken away by the angel, I do not know where. But I do know it was in the spirit realm.

            As we approached the place, I saw countless thousands of demons, all in fighting gear, standing at

            attention, row upon row as far as my eye could see. They were standing at attention, obviously awaiting

            some instructions.

            Then, we entered a huge room. It was vast. It was like being in a dark cavern lit with a glowing red and

            black phosphorus like substance oozing down the walls and all over everything. There were strange and

            horrible creatures crawling all over the walls and ceiling. As we hovered over the room, the angel gestured

            to a figure sitting on a throne in the front. “That is Satan, the Ruler of this World,” (John 12:31) he said, “and

            these are his Kings of the Earth, his ruling demons.”

            The room itself was filled with row upon row of countless thousands of demons. Everything was in dark

            shadows. It was like color did not exist except in the red light. I could not begin to number them. They

            extended out as far as my eye could see, that’s how big the room was.

            Satan sat on a high throne in the center of the front of the room. On each side of him, but lower, sat two

            great demons each on a throne. The angel told me that one was the Prince over America, and that the

            other was the Prince over England. In the center below Satan on another throne sat another Prince whom

            the angel said was the King over the United Nations.

            Shortly after we arrived, a single huge majestic dark demon was called out of the crowd, and he came to

            stand in front of Satan. Satan addressed him as “the Ambassador to the White House.” He told him he had

            to control the White House to pass laws to legalize gay marriage, to wipe Christianity out of America, to stop

            any attempt to restrain abortions in any way, to make sex with children legal. As Satan was addressing the

            Ambassador, two more huge spirits stood up and came forward to stand behind him. The angel told me that

            one was the ruling spirit over the ACLU and the other was the ruling spirit over NAMBLA (North American

            ManBoy

            Love Association) which is trying to pass laws making sex with young children legal here in

            America. Satan told the Ambassador to the White House that these two ruling demons over the ACLU and

            NAMBLA were commissioned to support him along with all their warriors. He said that through the White

            House, the spirit of incest, immorality, lies, deceit had been rooted deep. These ruling spirits are set in place

            to control the next president to be placed in office. They were to work through the White House to destroy

            all moral laws of America, all the families of America and the Spirit of Christianity in America. Satan said

            that they have already been successful in corrupting Congress with spirits of lust and sexual immorality,

            greed, and lies and deceit. He seemed to feel that Congress was getting close to being completely under

            their control.

            Those demons closer to Satan were obviously of higher rank. They were huge and ugly and powerful.

            Their outer garments appeared to be a sort of shell that was actually a part of them – something like an

            armadillo. (The angel told me that they were the “principalities and rulers in high places” Eph. 6:12) As I

            looked, I saw that each one of them had something crawling all over it. I looked closer and saw that each

            one was covered with a myriad of tiny demons crawling all over them like lice. The angel told me that these

            tiny spirits were couriers. They were sent out in an instant to take messages to convey the will of the ruling

            demon to his underlings. They constantly came and went from the ruling demons.

            After Satan finished addressing those three demons, he turned to the rest of the crowd. I heard Satan call

            them his “body of governing princes.” They were each one a principality over a state here in America with

            warlords under them, over counties, cities, and smaller areas. There were demons that ruled over every

            courtroom and government office. There were also ruling demons over every area of the Federal

            Government as well. And one over each one of the Federal Court rooms – especially the Supreme Court.

            Fury was in their eyes, and I have never seen such evil as was in that place! The power of it defies

            description. As Satan spoke to them, I saw bolts of black lightening come out of his mouth and strike each

            one of his leaders, energizing and strengthening them. He gave them a number of orders:

            1.

            He told each one to go to the Capitol building of their state, and into every court room of their state

            and over the Capitol of Washington D.C., and every Federal Court Room. He told them that they

            must use every influence they could over the men an women in those positions to corrupt them –

            money, sex, lies, threats, lust for power, and even death if they did not cooperate. They are to see

            to it that laws and rulings are passed making every abomination to God legal in this nation.

            Everything immoral must now be legal and accepted by the population of the U.S. “Truly the

            people now want immorality”, he said, “just look at them.” Homosexuality must be exalted and

            every form of sexual perversion acceptable as “freedom of expression.” Every mention or symbol

            of Christianity must be removed – especially from all public places, and the schools. We must take

            the Word of God out of America. Make it illegal for the mention of God to be anywhere. You must

            now work quickly to outlaw Christianity as a hate religion. ALL people in any government position

            must be corrupted. All family values and the sanctity of marriage must be removed. The media

            must be given a free hand to do anything to keep corruption continually before the eyes of the

            people. The children must now be given the legal rights to be involved in any form of sex and any

            form of corruption. All parental rights over children must be removed. We shall set up nudist

            camps for youth.

            2.

            The church. Satan said, “Finally, all of my false prophets are in place within the Christian church.

            They will teach a message of greed, and lies, leading God’s people into such a pursuit of wealth

            and health and happiness that they will reject completely any fight to prevent our actions through

            the government. Now is the time for the final splitting of the church over politics. The Left against

            the Right in bitter competition. You shall set family against family over politics and religious rights.

            Now is the time to reap the seeds we have so carefully planted in the churches years ago. These

            seeds have now grown into powerful roots – the lust for wealth, power, sex, bitterness. Lust has

            now set sex over the church as a god. Marriage is no longer revered in the church. Each time a

            Christian gets involved in sexual sin, pornography, lust, abortion, and compromising with us, it

            opens a door so that we can send more spirits into their church. Through these things, God’s

            ability to use His power through them is greatly diminished. You must use gossip and slander and

            backbiting with even more power. Make sure that the church people will listen to

            anything

            negative against anyone trying to minister truth for their God. You must NOT permit anyone

            to expose or come against our kingdom!

            You must bring about more pregnancies out of wedlock, and then more abortions. You must see that this becomes an acceptable practice to everyone in the church. We are close to accomplishing this already, make it final now! You will see to it that the divorce rate in the church is doubled in 2004. Do this by sending out your demons to attack Christian married couples with lust for others, discord, anger, and discontent with the marriage. It is time to release all of our demonic prostitutes into the church – both male and

            female, especially into the Christian colleges, and into the pastor’s offices and also the leaders of

            the church. You must destroy all the Word of God and replace it with the word of man, my false

            prophets. You must see that the false signs and wonders will double within the church this year so

            that the people will follow my false prophets. Give the false prophets greater and more persuasive

            tongues to speak this year. Put the spirit of flesh in the church so that they will want anything of the

            flesh and abhor any sacrifices for God. Christians are more interested in their entertainment than

            their church. I want more sports on Sundays. The SuperBowl

            and the World Series has done an excellent job of keeping people out of church. They want entertainment – let’s give it to them! We have been successful in replacing true revival with forms of entertainment. Send demons into the life of each individual Christian to hinder their prayers. (Daniel 10) We are right now winning the war in the heavenlies because of their lack of prayer and commitment. All their prayers are now

            selfish, not trying to build up their God’s kingdom, but rather trying to build up their own which is

            actually my kingdom, they are just too blind to realize it. Each church today has become a kingdom

            ruled by a man and a board. Keep it that way!

            I saw Satan specially empower and commission huge numbers of the following spirits and sent

            them into the churches: the tempter, the oppressor, the murderer, the father of lies, the liar, the

            accuser, the deceiver, and the thief, and many more. Each one functioning according to his name.

            3.

            Expand terrorism! Empower the terrorist cells – send demons to teach them how to be most

            effective. Terrorism is a great weapon against the Christians. When we bring more terrorism to

            America and to the churches, Christians will turn against their God and lose their faith when they

            suffer. Also, I want more violence in the schools. More violence among the youth. If we get the

            youth, there will be no church. The church’s power will be total destroyed. Go after the children,

            the parents will give up God to justify their children, and their children’s sins.

            4.

            America must be destroyed from within. Let the so called

            Christians help us destroy it with their weak tolerance of anything we bring in. You must use every force available to you to see that this is done. This is the year to make our move. The Christians are weak, they are more interested in their entertainment and wealth than prayer, keep it that way. You shall use every lie and deceit to destroy this current president so that I can bring my choice for president into office. With the

            church being asleep and the Christians being weak, we have the power! We can use America’s

            own laws to destroy them. We can use the court system to over throw any laws we don’t like. The

            world is against America right now, which gives us greater power. We are to use that power of

            hatred against America as strength. We must bring in a flood of demons into America from the

            countries that are serving me, and through the religions that are serving me. They can legally ride

            into America on the hatred of others, and through other religions.

            5.

            Prepare the army of darkness to go out and to destroy everything that God claims is His. Make war

            in the homes, the churches, the schools, on the streets, in the work place. Destroy peace

            everywhere. It is time to set man against man and woman against woman.

            The destruction of America is now in our hands!

            Once America is destroyed, I will be god and rule the world. The time for my kingdom is finally at hand.

            As I left the room, I was very sad and felt so defeated and helpless, that is, until my eyes were opened to

            see not only the rows and rows of warrior demons standing at attention, but all around the edge, I saw

            countless numbers of God’s angels. They were waiting also. I saw the Arch Angels, each at the head of

            their legions of heavenly warriors. The angel guiding me told me, “All those angels are ready to fight for the

            Christians and morality in America. But their fight will be limited if the Christians don’t raise their voices in

            prayer and petitions to God.” He sounded very sad. “The angel’s strength is very limited because of the

            lack of prayer and commitment of God’s people.” The angel showed me more, but forbid me to talk about it

            until God said the time was right to do so.

            A Word To God’s People

            Why does the Lord give such visions to His people? Because He wants us to stand up and fight and pray

            against all the plans of the devil! God reveals the secret things!

            “Surely the Lord god does nothing, Unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.

            A lion has roared! Who will not fear?” Amos 3:78 God not only reveals His secrets to His prophets, He reveals Satan’s secrets as well. Please, every one of you who reads this, consider this a call to prayer and war. Ask the Holy Spirit to teach you how to pray about this battle.

            “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we

            ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which can not be uttered.” Romans

            8:26 We urge you to do several things. Keep a copy of this newsletter, and give a copy to others. Each day, put it in front of you and pray through each point Satan made to his servants. Ask God to put a halt to each one

            of Satan’s plans! Go into God’s courtroom and lodge your petitions against Satan’s petitions. Remember,

            Satan is right now standing in God’s courtroom petitioning God to be able to do all that he has planned and

            instructed his servants to do. If we don’t go into that courtroom as well and petition against Satan, then God

            will have to grant Satan what he is asking for. How do you go into God’s courtroom? Simple. “Father, in

            the name of Jesus, I request to come before you in your courtroom. I am requesting to counter petition

            Satan. . . .”

            Pray for our government leaders, pastors and teachers. Pray for those you know by name. Ask God to bind

            up the demons who are seeking to control them. Ask God to destroy Satan’s weapons of mass destruction

            so that they malfunction.

            Ask God to strengthen His angels.

            Pray about the war in Iraq! Ask God to cause all weapons being used against our troops to malfunction. To

            blow up and kill the people trying to use them. Ask God to send His spirit into Iraq to open the door for the

            gospel. Pray for the government being formed over there. Pray that the new Iraqi constitution will not be

            permitted to make Islam the only legal religion in Iraq. Pray for our soldiers, for their strength, for their

            encouragement, for their protection. Ask God to bind up the demons that are attacking them.

            Pray for our marriages. Pray for your own marriage. Daily command all demons attacking you and your

            family to be bound up and to cease functioning. Refuse to allow the thief to steal from you! (See Unbroken

            Curses) Take authority over the thief and command him to return everything he is trying to steal from you.

            Ask the Holy Spirit to alert you when the thief is in operation in your life.

            Don’t get discouraged! Don’t fall into Satan’s trap of thinking that you are just one small person. Just one

            small person who cannot make a difference. Yes you can! Remember, God told Abraham that He would

            spare Sodom if only 10 righteous people could be found in the city. (Genesis 18:1733)

            I like the note on

            This scripture in my Bible, it says, “From this we learn that it is not the presence of evil that brings God’s

            mercy and longsuffering to an end

            ;

            rather, it is the absence of good!” Can you find 10 other people in your

            city to join with you weekly to pray over this message? To pray over your city, your government, your

            families and churches? If so, your city can be spared.

            War is upon us, dear brothers and sisters! We can no longer ignore it. Difficult times are in front of us. We

            must fight. We must war in prayer, or the consequences will be too terrible to think about. We must take

            authority over the spirits of darkness. We must speak out in our nation, in our government, in our schools, in our churches. Take courage, God’s word has this to say:

            “He who dwells in the secret place of the most High

            Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty,

            I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress

            ;

            My God, in Him I will trust.’

            Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,

            Even the Most High, your dwelling place,

            No evil shall befall you,

            Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling

            ;

            For He shall give His angels charge over you,

            To keep you in all your ways.

            In their hands they shall bear you up,

            Lest you dash your foot against a stone.”

            Psalm 91:12

            & 912

            “Arise, Shine,

            For your light has come!

            And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.

            For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,

            And deep darkness the people

            ;

            But the Lord will arise over you,

            And His glory will be seen upon you.”

            Isaiah 60:12

            Copies

            You are always welcome to copy any of our newsletters to give to other people. If you know of someone

            who would like to receive our newsletter, if they live inside the U.S., please send their name and address to

            us. We will be happy to add them to our mailing list.

            ∙ * * * * *

            When Satan knocks on the door to your heart with temptation, let God answer the door. It’s His

            home, after all!

             

             

             

             

             

          • andrews1975 says:

            Dear Brother Matt,

             

            We cannot say Jesus decried the use of the word Father without decrying the use of the word Father entirely in everyday life, this is the hyperbole I expressed.

             

            Jesus was not against priests, or an organised structure, he was against proud of heart and hypocritical priests. Personally speaking I have known extremely humble priests who are very happy to serve and not be served, have you met any priests or are your views of the Roman Catholic structure based on your belief of what it is or isn’t? Jesus was not saying that we should throw out the idea of an organised clergy. He had a great respect for their office “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses seat; therefore do whatever they teach you and follow it” (Mat 23:2). Brother, perhaps you ought to pray most earnestly about this.

             

            “Your Salvation is not in a Religion, Church, or the Traditions of men.”

             

            This statement assumes an awful lot about the Church. To get anywhere we need to understand the nature of the Church.

             

            Jesus founded one Church Matt 16:18 18And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it” he did not say I will build my churches (plural).

             

            Jesus established an authoritative Church, a Church that can speak authoritatively to the Truth John 8 32Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” To be set free then, to know the Truth, is critical for us Christians, to be saved, to reach Heaven – We need to know the Truth.

             

            So where do we as Christians look for the truth, the Bible….right? Well, the Bible itself states “1 Timothy 3:15 15if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth.” So when you want to know the truth the Bible says you should look to the Church. But how can the Church decide on matters of truth? It needs authority to decide what is the truth

             

            Matthew 18 15“If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. 16But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’17If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”

             

            Notice what this passage doesn’t say, it doesn’t say we should consult scripture to decide the dispute, the final authority is the Church and if they refuse to listen to the Church scripture is clear that it has the authority to cut them off.

             

            “Acts 8 20Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.” Peter cuts him off from the Church; this is indeed a Church with true authority

             

            But for many non-Catholics their “church” does not have this level of authority, for them the “church” is this “invisible” entity made up of all true believers regardless of what denomination they are in. The various churches or denominations here on earth (such as Baptist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal etc) here are congregations that come together for worship and for fellowship, but they are not the Church. This idea of the Church being “invisible” precludes the Church from having any real authority. After all if the Church is “invisible” how can it make, or hand down, any authoritative decisions in the visible world?   Or are we expecting the Holy Spirit to announce to everyone, at the same time, that a judgement has just been made for the visible realm and that we’re all to follow it, has that happened recently? And if that’s going on, unbeknown to the Catholic Church, how is it that there are over 30,000 different protestant denominations believing and following different values?

             

            For the Catholic Christian however, we believe that the Church is both visible and invisible, that it has both body and soul (so to speak). The Church is the body of Christ

             

            “Ephesians 122And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, “23which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” The Church is the fullness of Christ “Ephesians 5 23For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.“

            Jesus is the head of the body he has a physical dimension and a spiritual dimension so it only makes sense that the Church, which is his body, has both body and soul. (that it has both a physical and a spiritual dimension), so to say that the Church is merely spiritual, that it is merely this invisible unity of all believers, that is has a soul and not a body doesn’t make scriptural sense. The Church is a visible authoritative Church and has doctrinal unity in faith and morals.    

             

            In John 17 Jesus prays to the Father “22I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” The unity here that Jesus is talking about here cannot be an invisible unity of all believers, it has to be a visible unity if the world is to see it and know about it, the Church has to be a visible Church. Scripture says the visible unity within the Church is “Acts 4:32 32All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had.” Do you think that God the Son might want infant baptism but God the Father might not? No, they are in complete agreement on all faith and morals (as well as everything else). So for Christians to be one, just as the Father and Son are one, we should have 100% unity of doctrine.

             

            Jesus founded one Church, it is an authoritative Church speaking with authority on faith and morals and it is a visible Church otherwise it would not be able to fulfil Jesus prayers for the world to see it.

             

            But why you may ask is it so important to establish the authoritative nature of the church? Why is it so important that the Church has authority, “churches” you may know get by just fine without handing any decrees or authoritative decisions down? We need an authoritative Church if we are to know the Truth that will set us free and so we don’t have to guess as to what is, and isn’t true, in matters of faith and morals.

            Remember, not everything has been revealed i.e. 50 years ago there wasn’t embryonic stem cell research, but it is now a reality, so when it did arrive who, who should decide if it is morally acceptable or not? Only a visible Church with the authority handed down to it can do so. If a “church” has no authority then its judgement would be subject to compromise (no better than tossing a coin) and error and conflict can creep in and divide it.

             

            But here’s the kicker, if the Catholic Church does not have authority, then the Bible doesn’t have any either, think about that for a minute. As Catholics, as Christians, we believe that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, or in other words that the Bible, when properly understood, contains no errors (inerrant).  It is the inspired Word of God and God does not make mistakes. But how do we know that the Bible is inspired? How do we know it truly comes from God? How do we even know which books are supposed to be in the Bible? Because the Catholic Church has told us so. There is no list within the Bible that states which books are supposed to be in there. The Bible was handed down by the Catholic Church based on its interpretation of what books were essential and those that were not. So we have to rely on a non-biblical source, the Church to tell us which books should be in the Bible and which are not. 

             

            The Bible did not become set until circa 350-years after the death of our Lord Jesus Christ and there was no protestant Bible (which shares the same New Testament) until circa 1500-years after our Lords death. For 350 years the Bible was not put together as it is now and it’s not as if the whole world just knew that these 27 books were inspired by God. There were lots of other books that people wanted to see in the Bible, did you know that? A partial list includes: The Acts of Peter; The Acts of Paul; The Acts of John; The Apocalypse of Peter; The Kerygma of Peter; The Acts of Andrew; The Acts of Thomas; The Apocalypse of Paul; The Gospel of Thomas; The Apocalypse of Thomas and many others. Also, some of the books within the New Testament were very much disputed as the Word of God. It wasn’t until the synod of Rome (about 382 a.d.) that the Catholic Church officially declared on the Canon of scripture (the list of books within the Bible). Do you realise the implications that this has for Bible alone believers and objectors to Roman Catholicism and those that seek to declare that there is no salvation within its doors or that it is simply the traditions of men?

             

            Dear Brother Matt, I could go on, however I will instead leave you with this to think about.  Let’s look at 2 Peter 3 14-17 “14So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 15Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. “

             

            He is saying to avoid following false prophets that will lead you away from proper authority, don’t follow these that will go the way of Balaam.

             “17Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position. “

            St Peter is saying don’t leave proper authority; there are those that are ignorant and unstable who twist the scriptures, how? Using their own private judgement or interpretation which Peter condemns (2 Peter 1:20), or listening to false teachers who bring in their own private teachings (2 Peter 2:1-2) and who reject authority (2 Peter 2:10) and they fall away in the manner of following Balaam and he finishes off in Chapter 3 calling them ignorant and unstable people.

             

            Brother, not only is scripture authoritative (which Jesus uses to great effect against the Devil) so are the oral traditions handed down (which is also the Word of God); and also the Church which gives proper interpretation to both. Just as Jesus himself gave proper interpretation to the scriptures to the Devil, Jesus empowers the Church to give proper interpretation of the scriptures to the world. That’s why Jesus could say to the Church, go into all the world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.  He was able to say if they hear you, they hear me, if they reject you, they reject me. In Acts when they went out proclaiming the Gospel and errors or heresies arose, even Paul and Barnabas could not settle the disagreement (notice they followed Jesus’ instructions to a “T“ here, they brought in two or three and what a two to bring in but Paul and Barnabas, talk about your big hitters) but even they could not quell the dissention, so what did they do, they did exactly what Jesus told them to do and took it to the Church (Acts 15) and when they did the Church declared what the world is to believe about this heresy.  St Peter the head of the Church who stands up in Acts 15 speaks and declares what is to be believed, exercising his authority uniquely by Jesus Christ, and then they all shut up!

             

            Sola scriptura (Bible alone) is nowhere to be found in Acts but you do find an authoritative Church declaring Thus Saith God.  We see scripture, we see oral tradition and we see the Church interpreting both.

             

            Thank you Brother and God Bless and for the Journey.

          • horns4plenty says:

                 You dear sir are very misguided! The heads of the Roman Catholic Church has very strong ties to a group called the brotherhood. The brotherhood uses the catholic church as front to operate pretty much unmolested and undetected all over the world. I am not going to address this in detail at this time.

                Stop debating this issue Andrew. It is a distraction to the people of God and keeps them from addressing things that are way more important than your preferred doctrine of men.

               

          • warrior daughter says:

            I have decided to get out of  this debate…It is getting nowhere like a boat that lacks oars and is struggling to get to the shore …..Andrew has much faith in the RC church and only God will be able to take the blinders off of his heart…It is not only the RC church that teaches deception but deception has arrived in other denominations and the people of God must dust off their Bibles and open them and see what they are being taught aligns with the Word…The Bible is truely a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path  Psalm 119:105

          • horns4plenty says:

            Amen Warrior daughter and praise God!

             

            With Michaels permission later on after I get back from work I would like to post a website for believers that will really shed some light on some things for some wanting to learn how to stand up and fight and make a difference in the days that we are in. So michael if it would be okay please email me and let me know and I will give you website first to review and then you can post it for everyone if you like.

            Love in Christ

            Corey

          • andrews1975 says:

            Dear Sister,

             

            I notice you want to “get out of this debate”, however if you still wish to find the answers to the questions you asked above, or if anyone else would like to know the answers you can find them, and many other answers to the Catholic faith, on an audio CD pack available from here  http://www.saintjoe.com/prodinfo.asp?number=7904 it costs about $35 of for free resources go to http://www.biblechristiansociety.com and there are lots of free MP3 downloads on everything from the saints, bible alone, faith alone, Mary, the pope etc. Or if its website resources you’re after look at http://www.catholic.com or http://www.catholicbridge.com

             

            Thanks and God bless and for the journey

          • andrews1975 says:

            Dear Brother,

             

            1 Peter 3:15But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

             

            Thanks and God bless and for the Journey

          • Matt1078 says:
            Dear Brother Andrew
             
            Only one question.
            *
            How does a Catholic attain Salvation?
            *
            Thank you Brother and God Bless and for the Journey
            Matt
          • andrews1975 says:

            Hello Brother,

             

            Instead of duplicating the Faith Alone or Faith and Works debate here’s a link that covers both the Protestant arguments and Catholic answers http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/2003/0303sbs.asp  The Bible is the inerrant (without error) inspired Word of God and the Catholic Church doesn’t take a scripture verse/passage out of context, lift it out and absolute it to the detriment of others, but takes all of sacred scripture together and places it within its proper context.

             

            Thanks and God bless and for the Journey.

             

    • warrior daughter says:

      Andrew…you are very skilled in your defense of the RC church and I am wondering are you a priest or studying to become one or a RC theologian…..Faith in a denomination is not the same as faith in God…

      Below are some hard questions concerning the RC church…..I do not remember where I got this but it was in a file on my computer…

      ———————————————

       

      Where in the Bible do we find Peter assuming and exercising the role of a Catholic pope?

      Where does the Bible say the early churches treated Peter in a papal fashion?

      Where does the Bible say that one man is the head of all churches?

      Where does Bible say God established a special priesthood for the churches that is separate from the priesthood of the believers?

      Where does the Bible describe the office of such priests in the early churches?

      Where does the Bible say that New Testament priests are ordained after the order of Melchizedek?

      Where in the Bible do we find a requirement that pastors be celibate?

      Where does the Bible say the apostles passed on their authority through a succession?

      Where does the Bible give standards for apostolic succession? There are standards for pastors and deacons, but where are the standards for an ongoing apostleship?

      Where does the Bible describe nuns in the early churches?

      Where in the Bible do we find anyone praying to Mary or to any other person other than God?

      Where does the Bible call Mary the Mother of God?

      Where does the Bible say that Mary is the Queen of Heaven?

      Where in the Bible do we find the teaching that Mary is sinless?

      Where in the Bible do we find the baptism of an infant who is too young to believe in Christ?

      Where does the Bible teach us that the church can identify dead people as saints and can then pray to them?

      Where does the Bible teach that a dead person can intercede for the living?

      Where does the Bible teach about purgatory?

      Where does the Bible teach that churches should use the bones of dead men in any type of religious manner?

      Where does the Bible teach that the churches used indulgences?

      Where in the Bible do we find even one example of a Catholic mass being conducted or even described? If Christ established the mass and if it is central to the Christian faith as Rome claims, why is there not one example of it in the book of Acts and the New Testament epistles?

      Where in the Bible do we find Christians taking the Lord’s supper by partaking of the bread alone without the wine or grape juice?

      Where in the Bible does Paul or any of the early church leaders teach that there are seven sacraments?

      Where in the Bible do we find the churches practicing the sacrament of confirmation?

      Where in the Bible do we find the churches practicing any sort of extreme unction or last rites as a sacrament?

      Where in the Bible do we find the prayer of the rosary?

      Where in the Bible do we find that New Testament churches are to conduct elaborate rituals and ceremonies after the fashion of Rome?

      Where in the Bible do we find that the headquarters for the church is to be in Rome?

       

      During the last 1,700 years, the Roman Catholic Church has put to death hundreds of thousands she believed to be heretics — Jews, dissident Catholics, Protestants, anabaptists, Hussites, Lollards, Waldenses, Albigenses and many others in distant lands who refused to convert to the ‘one true church.’ Today, the Roman Catholic Church calls people who hold these very same opinions ‘separated brethren’ and teaches it is wrong to persecute on the basis of religious belief. Which church is right? The church which killed those who dispute her teachings, or the church which treats other Christians — and even other religions — as alternative pathways to heaven?

      CONCLUSION

      If you are Roman Catholic, please understand that we do not hate you. To the contrary, we love you so much that we preach the truth about Rome so you can see its errors and turn to the biblical faith in Christ. Our desire and prayer to God is that you might be saved. Forgiveness of sins and eternal life is a gift that was purchased by Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary, and He offers you that gift today. It is not something you have to try to earn. As a sinner, you cannot ever do enough to earn God’s favor. It is not something that any church can earn for you. It is not something that can be obtained through a church ritual, such as baptism or confirmation. Salvation is the free eternal mercy of God through Jesus Christ, and He stands ready and able to receive every sinner that will come to Him by repentance and faith. The Bible says you can KNOW you have eternal life right now, today.

      “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God” (1 John 5:112-13).

      “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8,9).

      “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (Romans 11:6).

      “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30).

       
       
      • andrews1975 says:

        Hello Sister,

         

        I will try to answer these for you. In my response I request that I be allowed to i) answer from the Bible and ii) have the option to follow up with sacred tradition and early Church writings to supplement (as some might appreciate the rounder view).

         

        However, since the explanations to these questions might be quite lengthy I suggest we open up a new topic where you can submit your questions instead of me bombarding this one page with a rather long and drawn out answer. I think you’ll find though that some of these topics have already been covered off by the postings on this page so could you trim the questions accordingly please?

         

        Unfortunately my answer won’t appear overnight and I may need some time to get through all these questions. I hope that’s okay.

         

        God bless and for the journey.

  4. When I was visited by Christ back on May 17th, 2009, one of the questions I asked him was which denomination should I be attending (I am Catholic).  The Lord’s answer was; “It doesn’t matter”.  “When I died on the cross for all sins, it was FOR ALL SINS!  No denomination is the RIGHT denomination, as long as the church believes that Jesus is the son of God and in the Holy Trinity, you are good to go.”

     

    As soon as I figure out how, I will be posting my whole testimony about when Christ came when I called on May 17th, 2009.

    • Brandon Martin says:

      Hello there, recently I have been wondering if the catholic church is corrupt or not because I am catholic as well and baptized catholic. I was also wondering which denomination I should follow to better please Jesus, the Lord. And your response really helped me out. I was wondering if we could exchange emails and phone numbers etc. bc I want to further know about your experience with the Lord Christ and share some things with you as well. i beleive i was brought to this website for a reason ya know. thank you please hit me back up. peaceeee

  5. In the Bible it clearly says in
    1 Timothy 4:1-5
    Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
    Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
    Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
    For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
    For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

    It says that the Doctrines of Devils are forbidding to marry and abstaining from meat.
    The Bible contradicts the Catholic faith!

    1 Timothy 2:5

    “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.”
    they pray to Mary but mary is just human and she is not the mediator

    In Luke 11:27-28
    And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked.
    But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.
    Jesus never acknowledge Mary with Praise and Worship and respect but said that blessed are they that hear the word of God. Also Jesus never called Mary mother.

    Also in praying the Rosary
    they use vein repetitive words which Jesus would not want us to do
    Matthew 6:7
    But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
    Jesus taught us the Lord’s prayer not to repeat it but to pray it once.
    but what do they do in praying the rosary
    they repeat the Hail Mary and Our Father so many times
    Also Mary is not the Mother of God and not the Queen of Heaven
    She is just human who has been used to bring forth the Jesus Christ

    Thank you people for hearing these words
    may you realize that you should stay away from that Catholic Faith and trust Jesus Christ Today

    • Well Brother ,

      Can you say that the Evangelical /
      Pentecostal Church is the true one ?;
      with all the divorced and remarried pastors , …and homosexual “star” preachers , ……..?

      Are you aware that some of the founders of Protestantism were bigamists (with a strong hatred for Jews ),……far removed from what the Lord Jesus would want them to be ?

      See not the splint in thy brother’s
      eye , while there is a beam in thy own !!!

      Pulling down or ridiculing another church will not take you anywhere , ……

      Preaching and praying is a better option.

      Cheers

      Vikki

      • michael says:

        In this messy world, we would be fools to look to other men besides Jesus Christ as our primary model. But when it comes to doctrine that is clearly opposed to the teaching of Scripture, as the Spirit of God reveals things, I would flee any church that teaches such things – including a protestant church of any kind – if and when it would teach apostate things. Of course its my view that the Roman church definitely teaches error. That doesn’t make any given protestant church safe though. Rather, lets look to the standard and teaching of Jesus, and not rest in the vain assurances that men may give us because we may suscribe to their folds.

      • Vikki, you asked…..”Can you say that the Evangelical /
        Pentecostal Church is the true one ?
        with all the divorced and remarried pastors , …and homosexual ‘star’ preachers , ……..?
        Are you aware that some of the founders of Protestantism were bigamists (with a strong hatred for Jews ),……far removed from what the Lord Jesus would want them to be ?”

        I don’t think ANY church is the “true” church. They have all been established by men, who tend by nature to tweak things according to their own inclinations. Every denomination or difference in doctrine has mistakes. None of them are perfect or true, but instead divisions created by men who base their precepts on what they believe personally.

        Jesus didn’t plan on us dividing up based on disagreements in insignificant things like what we should wear, or eat, or if women should cut their hair, or if men should have tattoos…..His intention, I believe, was for His Church to be unified based on salvation, redemption, and the belief in our need for His grace to get us through the day. It’s the weakness of man that led to denominational divisions, strife, arguing, and oppression of people groups — up to and including the Crusades, the Reformation, and other major church/people splits. We lost sight of the reason for the body to gather — to rejoice in hope, to fellowship with like-minded believers, and to strengthen each other so that we could go out and witness to the lost — because we got distracted by petty arguments that we saw as more important than the cross of Christ. Instead of putting Christ and God the Father first, and relying on the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us into all truth, we put our trust in our own strength and beliefs…..and where has it led us? To denominations fighting with each other over things that don’t matter when it comes to salvation and redemption; to church and denominational splits; to denying communion to those who see differently than us on points of doctrine; to the loss of what could be, combined, the Army of Christ dedicated to preaching salvation and redemption to a world lost to the knowledge of His saving grace and the love He has to offer — a love that transcends race, doctrine and creed.

        Jesus didn’t found any particular church. What He founded was a body of believers, tasked with the Great Commission as stated in Matthew 28:16-20. He didn’t establish a doctrine past the Word of God; no more was needed. The Son brought redemption, reconciling us with the Father; the Spirit was sent to live in us, reminding us of the saving grace of the Son. All the rest is window dressing, personal preference, and prejudice clothed in rules and rituals that were never supposed to interfere with the worship of the Father, adoration of the Son, and appealing to the Spirit to help us walk the walk of faith.

        When we start arguing over which church is the “true” church, the devil has accomplished his goal. He wants nothing more than for the Body of Christ to be rendered ineffective by bickering, infighting and arguing over who is more holy, righteous or closer to God. If he can get us distracted by division, he doesn’t have to worry about us preaching to the lost and bringing more people into the Kingdom of God…..we’ll be so busy fussing at each other we’ll forget about our real purpose and calling. What’s more important…..which church, if any, Jesus founded — or reaching out to those without hope and sharing with them the hope found in Jesus? When we die and stand before God, will He ask us which church we belonged to, or will we be judged based on how many people we shared the love of God with? As long as your church preaches Jesus is Lord; He was crucified, died, buried and resurrected; He rose and returned to heaven; the Holy Spirit indwells us and enables us to walk the walk of faith on a daily basis; and that we are called to share our faith with others based on the Great Commission — it doesn’t matter what church you attend. It only matters if your church interferes with your faith or keeps you from living as God wants you to. Church should strengthen you for the week ahead and give you encouragement to spread the Good News with a lost and dying world. If your church does that, it doesn’t matter what name it holds or what denomination, if any, it claims to belong to. If it doesn’t do that, no denominational claim is going to make a difference.

        • These are words I have felt in my spirit for a very long time. I come from a family that if u didn’t believe what they believe or follow rules they follow then you are wrong. No two ways about it. But I believe Religion only divides. Jesus Christ Unites!!! So I will not claim a title of religion that the world says I should have. I will only claim the name Jesus Christ. And do my best to live by his example. Don’t become of this world when u were sent to change it! I pray this over every denomination, race, and living soul in Jesus name!

    • Mary is the mother of Christ. The Catholic Church is honoring Mary as the mother of Christ Jesus. The Catholic faith is not worshiping Mary as God but as mother of Christ who has been chosen to bring forth Jesus. The Catholic Faith is praying the Rosary and repeating the same prayer over and over again. Why? as a mother, who wouldn’t want to hear her child saying sweet words to her over and over again? who wouldn’t want to feel a child’s love to his mother through speaking lovely words honoring his mother? “Holy Mary Mother of God, PRAY FOR US SINNERS.” Pray for us sinners, not forgive our sins because catholic Faith knows that Mary is not God who forgives our sins but the mother of God who can pray for all sinners in the world. We sinners keep on asking our friends to pray for us every time we are in trouble. These friends responds our call,right? how much more Mary who is the Mother of our Lord? Haven’t you realized that?

      Define Vain? it means fruitless, futile. Praying the Rosary is not fruitless, not futile. it is even full of honor and love to such a mother.

      Now ask your mother to pray for your safety, to wish you luck, to hold your hand, to kiss you, hug you, to pray for you everyday. ask this to your mother over and over again so sweetly you will speak and you will feel her sweetest love. The sweetest Love of all.

      Mary is a Mother too.

      • Um….Mary is dead. Dead. Her spirit is alive, but she is dead. How can she, or any other dead person, pray for us?

        Praying the Rosary, or any other repetitious prayer that can become rote, or words repeated mindlessly without thought or meaning, is worthless. It is meaningless. It has no power.

        I do ask my mom to pray for me, but I won’t ask her to pray for me when she’s dead. She won’t be able to. She’ll be dead.

        Why do Catholics pray to dead people? I’m sorry….I don’t get it. I only pray to the Triune God, not dead people.

        That is my number 1 issue with this whole Catholic thing.

        Also, there is the question of not knowing if you are saved. Well, my Bible says that if you call on the name of Jesus, you will be saved (Rom. 10:13). No caveats, no rituals or rites….just call on the name, believe in your heart and confess with your mouth (Rom. 10:9).

        Then there’s the question of confessing to a priest….huh? It says in 1 John 1:9 that if we confess our sins to JESUS, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us. No “our fathers” or “hail marys” are mentioned. Just confess. How in the world does repeating a prayer, a standardized and memorized prayer you can say while going over your grocery list, cause you to be forgiven? I’m sorry….this is confusing to me. If I can confess to a priest and be forgiven by saying a prayer someone else wrote, why did Jesus have to die????

        And as for saints…..well, Galatians 3:27-28 says, “27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is [aj]neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” It specifically says no one person is any better than any other. There is no need for saints. They were people just like us, and praying to them is as silly as praying to your cat. We pray to God the Father, Jesus, and ask for help from the Holy Spirit, our comforter. We need no other intermediary. We don’t need saints, and they should not be idolized; neither should they be revered or borderline worshiped.

        Yes, Jesus spoke to Peter about being a rock….but He was referring to Peter as solid in the faith. If you study the Bible in the original texts you will see the rock Jesus refers to when speaking to Peter and the one He refers to when speaking of building His church are two different things. Unfortunately English doesn’t have the same nuances as some foreign languages.

        I’m sorry the Catholics feel theirs is the “only one true church,” but I will admit it smacks of many of the same arguments that exist in Protestantism as well….infant baptism vs. baptism when the person can understand what is happening; dunking vs. sprinkling in baptism; submission of women (what does that really mean? Many churches are adamant about a literal interpretation of what they think Paul meant when he spoke of submission, forgetting that the letter of the law leads to bondage and not freedom); whether women can preach or even serve in churches in a capacity where they are in charge of men; personal conversion experiences vs. living a good life; rituals and liturgies vs. Spirit-led worship; is the Spirit moving today or was it just for the immediate time after the death and resurrection of Jesus?…….it goes on and on and on and on. Martin Luther would say, and did say, that Catholicism was a religion based on rules and regulation and buying your way into heaven vs. grace. However, the Protestant church in its infancy had its faults as well.

        What we need to agree on is that we are sinners, saved by grace, in need of God’s love, the salvation obtained by the death and resurrection of Jesus, and the guidance of the Holy Spirit in order to live lives of progress and growth. None of us are perfect, nor will we be until we see Jesus face to face. The Church, the worldwide Body of Christ, is in crisis. We have ALL slipped and let our standards relax, resulting in unmarried church members cohabiting in violation of the Word of God, ordination of homosexual clergy members, not only acceptance of but sometimes outright endorsement of divorce even if not according to Biblical guidelines….we have strayed so far from the truth sometimes I wonder if anything short of the Rapture will bring us back.

        We are all in a mess. Catholic, Protestant alike need the grace of God and we need to, “…..run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 [a]fixing our eyes on Jesus, the [b]author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”(Heb 12:1b-2) — and we need to stop infighting. There’s enough of that in the world without Christians doing it as well.

        God help us….we surely need it.

    • andrews1975 says:

      Dear Brother,

       

      1 Timothy 4:1-5 It says that the Doctrines of Devils are forbidding to marry and abstaining from meat. The Bible contradicts the Catholic faith!” 

       

      When Paul warned of those who “forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods,” he had in mind people with the Manichean belief that sex is wrong and certain foods like meat are immoral. (Thus the spiritual ideal for many modern New Agers is a celibate vegetarian, as in the Eastern religions.)

      We know that Paul has in mind those who teach sex and certain foods are intrinsically immoral because he tells us that these are “foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer” (1 Tim. 4:3b-5).

      Sex and all kinds of food are good things-which is why the Catholic Church has marriage for a sacrament and heartily recommends the practice eating to its members. This is why it is fitting for these things to be given up as part of a spiritual discipline. Thus Daniel gave up meat (as well as wine, another symbol of rejoicing), and Paul endorses the practice of temporary celibacy to engage in a special spiritual discipline of increased prayer (1 Cor. 7:5). By denying ourselves these good things we encourage an attitude of humility, free ourselves from dependence on them, cultivate the spiritual discipline of sacrifice, and remind ourselves of the importance of spiritual goods over earthly goods.

      In fact, if there was an important enough purpose, Paul recommended permanently giving up marriage and meat. Thus he himself was celibate (1 Cor. 7:8). He recommended the same for ministers (2 Tim. 2:3-4) and for the unmarried in order to devote themselves more fully to the Lord (1 Cor. 7:32-34), unless doing so would subject them to great temptations (1 Cor. 7:9). Similarly, he recommended giving up meat permanently if it would prevent others from sinning (1 Cor. 8:13).

      Since the Catholic Church requires abstinence from meat only on a temporary basis, it clearly does not regard meat is immoral. Instead, it regards it as the giving up of a good thing in order to attain a spiritual goal. 

       

      1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.”they pray to Mary but mary is just human and she is not the mediator” 

        

      A charge commonly levelled against asking the saints for their intercession is that this violates the sole mediatorship of Christ, which Paul discusses: “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).

      But asking one person to pray for you in no way violates Christ’s mediatorship, as can be seen from considering the way in which Christ is a mediator. First, Christ is a unique mediator between man and God because he is the only person who is both God and man. He is the only bridge between the two, the only God-man. But that role as mediator is not compromised in the least by the fact that others intercede for us. Furthermore, Christ is a unique mediator between God and man because he is the Mediator of the New Covenant (Heb. 9:15, 12:24), just as Moses was the mediator (Greek mesitas) of the Old Covenant (Gal. 3:19–20).

      The intercession of fellow Christians—which is what the saints in heaven are—also clearly does not interfere with Christ’s unique mediatorship because in the four verses immediately preceding 1 Timothy 2:5, Paul says that Christians should interceed: “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way. This is good, and pleasing to God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:1–4). Clearly, then, intercessory prayers offered by Christians on behalf of others is something “good and pleasing to God,” not something infringing on Christ’s role as mediator.

      “No Contact with the dead”


      Sometimes Fundamentalists object to asking our fellow Christians in heaven to pray for us by declaring that God has forbidden contact with the dead in passages such as Deuteronomy 18:10–11. In fact, he has not, because he at times has given it—for example, when he had Moses and Elijah appear with Christ to the disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matt. 17:3). What God has forbidden is necromantic practice of conjuring up spirits. “There shall not be found among you any one who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, any one who practices divination, a soothsayer, or an augur, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or a medium, or a wizard, or a necromancer. . . . For these nations, which you are about to dispossess, give heed to soothsayers and to diviners; but as for you, the Lord your God has not allowed you so to do. The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brethren—him you shall heed” (Deut. 18:10–15).

      God thus indicates that one is not to conjure the dead for purposes of gaining information; one is to look to God’s prophets instead. Thus one is not to hold a seance. But anyone with an ounce of common sense can discern the vast qualitative difference between holding a seance to have the dead speak through you and a son humbly saying at his mother’s grave, “Mom, please pray to Jesus for me; I’m having a real problem right now.” The difference between the two is the difference between night and day. One is an occult practice bent on getting secret information; the other is a humble request for a loved one to pray to God on one’s behalf.
       

      Overlooking the Obvious


      Some objections to the concept of prayer to the saints betray restricted notions of heaven. One comes from anti-Catholic Loraine Boettner:

      “How, then, can a human being such as Mary hear the prayers of millions of Roman Catholics, in many different countries, praying in many different languages, all at the same time?

      “Let any priest or layman try to converse with only three people at the same time and see how impossible that is for a human being. . . . The objections against prayers to Mary apply equally against prayers to the saints. For they too are only creatures, infinitely less than God, able to be at only one place at a time and to do only one thing at a time.

      “How, then, can they listen to and answer thousands upon thousands of petitions made simultaneously in many different lands and in many different languages? Many such petitions are expressed, not orally, but only mentally, silently. How can Mary and the saints, without being like God, be present everywhere and know the secrets of all hearts?” (Roman Catholicism, 142-143).

      If being in heaven were like being in the next room, then of course these objections would be valid. A mortal, unglorified person in the next room would indeed suffer the restrictions imposed by the way space and time work in our universe. But the saints are not in the next room, and they are not subject to the time/space limitations of this life.

      This does not imply that the saints in heaven therefore must be omniscient, as God is, for it is only through God’s willing it that they can communicate with others in heaven or with us. And Boettner’s argument about petitions arriving in different languages is even further off the mark. Does anyone really think that in heaven the saints are restricted to the King’s English? After all, it is God himself who gives the gift of tongues and the interpretation of tongues. Surely those saints in Revelation understand the prayers they are shown to be offering to God.

      The problem here is one of what might be called a primitive or even childish view of heaven. It is certainly not one on which enough intellectual rigor has been exercised. A good introduction to the real implications of the afterlife may be found in Frank Sheed’s book Theology and Sanity, which argues that sanity depends on an accurate appreciation of reality, and that includes an accurate appreciation of what heaven is really like. And once that is known, the place of prayer to the saints follows.

      “Directly to Jesus”

      Some may grant that the previous objections to asking the saints for their intercession do not work and may even grant that the practice is permissible in theory, yet they may question it on other grounds, asking why one would want to ask the saints to pray for one. “Why not pray directly to Jesus?” they ask.

      The answer is: “Of course one should pray directly to Jesus!” But that does not mean it is not also a good thing to ask others to pray for one as well. Ultimately, the “go-directly-to-Jesus” objection boomerangs back on the one who makes it: Why should we ask any Christian, in heaven or on earth, to pray for us when we can ask Jesus directly? If the mere fact that we can go straight to Jesus proved that we should ask no Christian in heaven to pray for us then it would also prove that we should ask no Christian on earth to pray for us.

      Praying for each other is simply part of what Christians do. As we saw, in 1 Timothy 2:1–4, Paul strongly encouraged Christians to intercede for many different things, and that passage is by no means unique in his writings. Elsewhere Paul directly asks others to pray for him (Rom. 15:30–32, Eph. 6:18–20, Col. 4:3, 1 Thess. 5:25, 2 Thess. 3:1), and he assured them that he was praying for them as well (2 Thess. 1:11). Most fundamentally, Jesus himself required us to pray for others, and not only for those who asked us to do so (Matt. 5:44).

      Since the practice of asking others to pray for us is so highly recommended in Scripture, it cannot be regarded as superfluous on the grounds that one can go directly to Jesus. The New Testament would not recommend it if there were not benefits coming from it. One such benefit is that the faith and devotion of the saints can support our own weaknesses and supply what is lacking in our own faith and devotion. Jesus regularly supplied for one person based on another person’s faith (e.g., Matt. 8:13, 15:28, 17:15–18, Mark 9:17–29, Luke 8:49–55). And it goes without saying that those in heaven, being free of the body and the distractions of this life, have even greater confidence and devotion to God than anyone on earth.

      Also, God answers in particular the prayers of the righteous. James declares: “The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects. Elijah was a man of like nature with ourselves and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth its fruit” (Jas. 5:16–18). Yet those Christians in heaven are more righteous, since they have been made perfect to stand in God’s presence (Heb. 12:22-23), than anyone on earth, meaning their prayers would be even more efficacious.

      Having others praying for us thus is a good thing, not something to be despised or set aside. Of course, we should pray directly to Christ with every pressing need we have (cf. John 14:13–14). That’s something the Catholic Church strongly encourages. In fact, the prayers of the Mass, the central act of Catholic worship, are directed to God and Jesus, not the saints. But this does not mean that we should not also ask our fellow Christians, including those in heaven, to pray with us.

      In addition to our prayers directly to God and Jesus (which are absolutely essential to the Christian life), there are abundant reasons to ask our fellow Christians in heaven to pray for us. The Bible indicates that they are aware of our prayers, that they intercede for us, and that their prayers are effective (else they would not be offered). It is only narrow-mindedness that suggests we should refrain from asking our fellow Christians in heaven to do what we already know them to be anxious and capable of doing. 

       

      Luke 11:27-28 Jesus never acknowledge Mary with Praise and Worship and respect but said that blessed are they that hear the word of God.“

       

      Here it will help to look at the Greek particle menoun in Luke 11 :28, which several translations render as “rather.” thus implying (without proof) that Luke is using menoun as a particle of contradiction to mean, “No, Mary isn’t blessed; rather, blessed are they, etc.”

      Margaret E. Thrall, a Protestant scholar, cannot be accused of bias toward the Catholic position. In her study Greek Particles in the New Testament, suggests the following interpretation of menoun in Luke 11:27-28: “What you have said is true as far as it goes. But the blessedness of Mary does not consist simply in the fact of her relationship towards myself, but (menoun) in the fact that she shares in the blessedness of those who hear the word of God and keep it, and it is in this that true blessedness lies.”118 I think this is probably the best interpretation of this text, giving the true sense of “rather.”

       

      Scripture does not contradict itself, look at Luke 1:48, where Mary speaks by the Holy Spirit and says, “From now on all generations will call me blessed.” Have you called her “blessed” lately?

       

      “Also Jesus never called Mary mother.”

      Jesus called the Blessed Virgin Mary woman because she is the New Eve, she, like the New Adam (Jesus), was born immaculate, just as the First Adam and Eve were created immaculate. Because she is the New Eve, she is mother of the New Humanity (Christians), just as the first Eve was the mother of humanity. And, because she is the New Eve, she shares the fate of the New Adam. Whereas the First Adam and Eve died and went to dust, the New Adam and Eve were lifted up physically into heaven.

      It’s important to understand what the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception is and what it is not. Some people think the term refers to Christ’s conception in Mary’s womb without the intervention of a human father; but that is the Virgin Birth. Others think the Immaculate Conception means Mary was conceived “by the power of the Holy Spirit,” in the way Jesus was, but that, too, is incorrect. The Immaculate Conception means that Mary, whose conception was brought about the normal way, was conceived without original sin or its stain—that’s what “immaculate” means: without stain. The essence of original sin consists in the deprivation of sanctifying grace, and its stain is a corrupt nature. Mary was preserved from these defects by God’s grace; from the first instant of her existence she was in the state of sanctifying grace and was free from the corrupt nature original sin brings.

      When discussing the Immaculate Conception, an implicit reference may be found in the angel’s greeting to Mary. The angel Gabriel said, “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you” (Luke 1:28). The phrase “full of grace” is a translation of the Greek word kecharitomene. It therefore expresses a characteristic quality of Mary.

      The traditional translation, “full of grace,” is better than the one found in many recent versions of the New Testament, which give something along the lines of “highly favoured daughter.” Mary was indeed a highly favoured daughter of God, but the Greek implies more than that (and it never mentions the word for “daughter”). The grace given to Mary is at once permanent and of a unique kind. Kecharitomene is a perfect passive participle of charitoo, meaning “to fill or endow with grace.” Since this term is in the perfect tense, it indicates that Mary was graced in the past but with continuing effects in the present. So, the grace Mary enjoyed was not a result of the angel’s visit. In fact, Catholics hold, it extended over the whole of her life, from conception onward. She was in a state of sanctifying grace from the first moment of her existence.

      Fundamentalists’ Objections

      Fundamentalists’ chief reason for objecting to the Immaculate Conception and Mary’s consequent sinlessness is that we are told that “all have sinned” (Rom. 3:23). Besides, they say, Mary said her “spirit rejoices in God my Savior” (Luke 1:47), and only a sinner needs a Savior.

      Let’s take the second citation first. Mary, too, required a Savior. Like all other descendants of Adam, she was subject to the necessity of contracting original sin. But by a special intervention of God, undertaken at the instant she was conceived, she was preserved from the stain of original sin and its consequences. She was therefore redeemed by the grace of Christ, but in a special way—by anticipation.

      Consider an analogy: Suppose a man falls into a deep pit, and someone reaches down to pull him out. The man has been “saved” from the pit. Now imagine a woman walking along, and she too is about to topple into the pit, but at the very moment that she is to fall in, someone holds her back and prevents her. She too has been saved from the pit, but in an even better way: She was not simply taken out of the pit, she was prevented from getting stained by the mud in the first place. This is the illustration Christians have used for a thousand years to explain how Mary was saved by Christ. By receiving Christ’s grace at her conception, she had his grace applied to her before she was able to become mired in original sin and its stain.

      But what about Romans 3:23, “all have sinned”? Have all people committed actual sins? Consider a child below the age of reason. By definition he can’t sin, since sinning requires the ability to reason and the ability to intend to sin. This is indicated by Paul later in the letter to the Romans when he speaks of the time when Jacob and Esau were unborn babies as a time when they “had done nothing either good or bad” (Rom. 9:11).

      We also know of another very prominent exception to the rule: Jesus (Heb. 4:15). So if Paul’s statement in Romans 3 includes an exception for the New Adam (Jesus), one may argue that an exception for the New Eve (Mary) can also be made.

      Paul’s comment seems to have one of two meanings. It might be that it refers not to absolutely everyone, but just to the mass of mankind (which means young children and other special cases, like Jesus and Mary, would be excluded without having to be singled out). If not that, then it would mean that everyone, without exception, is subject to original sin, which is true for a young child, for the unborn, even for Mary—but she, though due to be subject to it, was preserved by God from it and its stain.

      The objection is also raised that if Mary were without sin, she would be equal to God. In the beginning, God created Adam, Eve, and the angels without sin, but none were equal to God. Most of the angels never sinned, and all souls in heaven are without sin. This does not detract from the glory of God, but manifests it by the work he has done in sanctifying his creation. Sinning does not make one human. On the contrary, it is when man is without sin that he is most fully what God intends him to be.

       Matthew 6:7 Also in praying the Rosary they use vein repetitive words which Jesus would not want us to do”

       

      First we must understand that they are meditations. When Catholics recite the twelve prayers that form a decade of the rosary, they meditate on the mystery associated with that decade. If they merely recite the prayers, whether vocally or silently, they’re missing the essence of the rosary. It isn’t just a recitation of prayers, but a meditation on the grace of God. Critics, not knowing about the meditation part, imagine the rosary must be boring, uselessly repetitious, meaningless, and their criticism carries weight if you reduce the rosary to a formula. Christ forbade meaningless repetition (Matt. 6:7), but the Bible itself prescribes some prayers that involve repetition. Look at Psalms 136, which is a litany (a prayer with a recurring refrain) meant to be sung in the Jewish Temple. In the psalm the refrain is “His mercy endures forever.” Sometimes in Psalms 136 the refrain starts before a sentence is finished, meaning it is more repetitious than the rosary, though this prayer was written directly under the inspiration of God.

      Christ himself used repetitious prayer but you don’t hear anyone accusing Him of contradicting the Bible Matthew 26 43″ When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. 44So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing.”

      Lastly, have you ever said the Our Father more than once, have you requested the same thing in prayer more than once?  

      “Also Mary is not the Mother of God”

      A woman is a man’s mother either if she carried him in her womb or if she was the woman contributing half of his genetic matter or both. Mary was the mother of Jesus in both of these senses; because she not only carried Jesus in her womb but also supplied all of the genetic matter for his human body, since it was through her—not Joseph—that Jesus “was descended from David according to the flesh” (Rom. 1:3).

      Since Mary is Jesus’ mother, it must be concluded that she is also the Mother of God: If Mary is the mother of Jesus, and if Jesus is God, then Mary is the Mother of God. There is no way out of this logical syllogism, the valid form of which has been recognized by classical logicians since before the time of Christ.

      Although Mary is the Mother of God, she is not his mother in the sense that she is older than God or the source of her Son’s divinity, for she is neither. Rather, we say that she is the Mother of God in the sense that she carried in her womb a divine person—Jesus Christ, God “in the flesh” (2 John 7, cf. John 1:14)—and in the sense that she contributed the genetic matter to the human form God took in Jesus Christ.

      To avoid this conclusion, Fundamentalists often assert that Mary did not carry God in her womb, but only carried Christ’s human nature. This assertion reinvents a heresy from the fifth century known as Nestorianism, which runs aground on the fact that a mother does not merely carry the human nature of her child in her womb. Rather, she carries the person of her child. Women do not give birth to human natures; they give birth to persons. Mary thus carried and gave birth to the person of Jesus Christ, and the person she gave birth to was God.

      The Nestorian claim that Mary did not give birth to the unified person of Jesus Christ attempts to separate Christ’s human nature from his divine nature, creating two separate and distinct persons—one divine and one human—united in a loose affiliation. It is therefore a Christological heresy, which even the Protestant Reformers recognized. Both Martin Luther and John Calvin insisted on Mary’s divine maternity. In fact, it even appears that Nestorius himself may not have believed the heresy named after him. Further, the “Nestorian” church has now signed a joint declaration on Christology with the Catholic Church and recognizes Mary’s divine maternity, just as other Christians do.

      Since denying that Mary is God’s mother implies doubt about Jesus’ divinity, it is clear why Christians (until recent times) have been unanimous in proclaiming Mary as Mother of God.

      “and not the Queen of Heaven”

      One biblical theme sheds light on these questions and serves as a key for unlocking the mystery of Mary’s queenship: the Old Testament tradition of the “queen mother” in the Davidic kingdom.

      In the monarchy of King David, as well as in other ancient kingdoms of the Near East, the mother of the ruling king held an important office in the royal court and played a key part in the process of dynastic succession. In fact, the king’s mother ruled as queen, not his wife.

      The great pre-eminence of the king’s mother may seem odd from our modern Western perspective, in which we think of a queen as being the wife of a king. However, recall that most ancient Near-Eastern kings practiced polygamy. King Solomon had seven hundred wives (1 Kgs. 11:3)—imagine the chaos in the royal court if all seven hundred were awarded the queenship! But since each king had only one mother, one can see the practical wisdom in bestowing the queenship upon her.

      A number of Old Testament passages reflect the important role of the queen mother in the Davidic kingdom. For example, almost every time the narrative of 1 and 2 Kings introduces a new monarch in Judah, it mentions the king’s mother as well, showing the mother’s intimate involvement in her royal son’s reign. Similarly, the queen mother is listed among the members of the royal court whom king Jehoiachin surrendered to the king of Babylon in 2 Kings 24:12.

      Her royal office is also described by the prophet Jeremiah, who tells how the queen mother possessed a throne and a crown, symbolic of her position of authority in the kingdom: “Say to the king and the queen mother: ‘Take a lowly seat, for your beautiful crown has come down from your head. . . . Lift up your eyes and see those who come from the north. Where is the flock that was given you, your beautiful flock?’” (Jer. 13:18, 20). It is significant that God directed this oracle about the upcoming fall of Judah to both the king and his mother. Addressing both king and queen mother, Jeremiah portrays her as sharing in her son’s rule over the kingdom.

      Probably the clearest example of the queen mother’s role is that of Bathsheba, wife of David and mother of Solomon. Scholars have noted the excellence of Bathsheba’s position in the kingdom once she became queen mother during Solomon’s rule. Compare the humble attitude of Bathsheba as spouse of King David (1 Kgs. 1:16–17, 31) with her majestic dignity as mother of the next king, Solomon (1 Kgs. 2:19–20). As spouse of the king, Bathsheba bows with her face to the ground and does obeisance to her husband, David, upon entering his royal chamber. In striking contrast, after her son Solomon assumed the throne and she became queen mother, Bathsheba receives a glorious reception upon meeting with her royal son:

      “So Bathsheba went to King Solomon, to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. And the king rose to meet her, and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne and had a seat brought for the king’s mother; and she sat on his right. Then she said, ‘I have one small request to make of you; do not refuse me.’ And the king said to her, ‘Make your request, my mother; for I will not refuse you’” (1 Kgs. 2:19–20).

      This account reveals the sovereign prerogatives of the queen mother. Note how the king rises and bows as she enters. Bathsheba’s seat at the king’s right hand has the greatest significance. In the Bible, the right hand is the place of ultimate honour. This is seen in particular in the messianic Psalm 110 (“Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool”). In fact, many New Testament passages refer to the right-hand imagery of Psalm 110 to show Christ’s divinity and his reign with the Father over the whole universe (e.g., Hebrews 1:13). Thus, the queen mother sitting at the king’s right hand symbolizes her sharing in the king’s royal authority and illustrates how she holds the most important position in the kingdom, second only to the king.

      This passage regarding Bathsheba also shows how the queen mother served as an advocate for the people, carrying petitions to the king. In 1 Kings 2:17, Adonijah asks Bathsheba to take a petition for him to King Solomon. He says to her: “Pray ask King Solomon—he will not refuse you—to give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife” (1 Kgs. 2:17). It is clear that Adonijah recognizes the queen mother’s position of influence over the king, so he confidently turns to Bathsheba as an intercessor for his request.

      A few Old Testament prophecies incorporate the queen mother tradition when telling of the future Messiah. One example is Isaiah 7:14, which originated during a time of dynastic crisis in Judah when Syria and Israel were threatening Jerusalem and plotting to overthrow King Ahaz. God offers Ahaz a sign that the kingdom will continue: “Hear then, O house of David! Is it too little for you to weary men, that you weary my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son and shall call his name Emmanuel” (Isa. 7:13–14).

      On one level, this passage points to the next king (Hezekiah) as a pledge that the Davidic dynasty will continue despite the threats of invading armies. At the same time, the royal son who is to be named “Emmanuel” points to the future messianic king (cf., Isa. 9:6–7, 11:1–2). This is why the New Testament says Jesus fulfills this prophecy from Isaiah (Matt. 1:23).

      For our purposes we should note how this prophecy links the mother to her royal son. Since the oracle is addressed specifically to the Davidic household and concerns the continuation of the dynasty, the young woman bearing forth the royal son would be understood as a queen mother. This has implications for our understanding of Mary. Since the mother of the king always ruled as queen mother, we should expect to find the mother of the messianic king playing the role of the true queen mother in the everlasting Kingdom of God.

      With this Old Testament background, we can now more clearly see how the New Testament portrays Mary in light of the queen mother tradition.

      The Gospel of Matthew has often been called the “Gospel of the Kingdom.” Matthew emphasizes that Jesus is “the Son of David,” who is the true King of the Jews establishing the “Kingdom of Heaven.” With all this kingly imagery, it should not be surprising to find queen mother themes as well.

      Right away, Matthew shows explicitly how the infant Jesus is the “Emmanuel” child as prophesied in Isaiah 7:14 (Matt. 1:23). As we saw above, this prophecy links the royal messianic child with his queen mother. Further, Matthew singles out the intimate relationship between the mother and her royal son by using the phrase “the child and his mother” five times in the first two chapters, recalling the close association between queen mother and royal son as described in the Books of Kings. Just as the queen mother was constantly mentioned alongside the Judean kings in 1 and 2 Kings, so Mary is frequently mentioned alongside her royal son, Jesus, in Matthew’s infancy narrative (Matt. 1:18; 2:11, 13, 14, 20, 21).

      We find Mary portrayed against the background of Davidic kingdom motifs in Luke’s Gospel as well, especially in his accounts of the Annunciation and Visitation. First, the angel Gabriel is said to appear to a virgin betrothed to a man “of the house of David” (1:27). Then the angel tells Mary, “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there will be no end” (Luke 1:31–33).

      Hear the strong Davidic overtones describing Mary and her royal son: a woman from the house of David giving birth to a son who will be the new king whose reign will never end. With echoes from the queen mother tradition of the Davidic kingdom and the mother-son prophecy of Isaiah 7:14, we can conclude that Mary is being given the vocation of queen mother.

      Mary’s royal office is made even more explicit in Luke’s account of the Visitation. Elizabeth greets Mary with the title “the mother of my Lord” (Luke 1:43). This title is charged with great queenly significance. In the royal court language of the ancient NearEast, the title “Mother of my Lord” was used to address the queen mother of the reigning king (who himself was addressed as “my Lord”; cf., 2 Sam. 24:21). Thus with this title Elizabeth is recognizing the great dignity of Mary’s role as the royal mother of the king, Jesus.

      Finally, Mary’s queenship can be seen in the great vision described in Revelation 12: “And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars; she was with child and she cried out in her pangs of birth, in anguish for delivery” (Rev. 12:1–2). Who is this newborn child? He is described as the messianic king exercising his dominion. In verse 5, the author of Revelation chose the messianic Psalm 2 to describe how this child will “rule all the nations with a rod of iron” (Rev. 12:5, Ps. 2:9). This royal son is taken up to heaven to sit on a throne (Rev. 12:5), and he ushers in the kingdom of God by defeating the devil: “Now the kingdom of our God has come, for the accuser has been throne down” (12:10). Certainly, this newborn child is the royal Messiah, King Jesus.

      In this light it is clear who this woman is who gave birth to the messiah: It is Mary. Some people have interpreted this woman in Revelation 12 as merely a symbol either for the Old Testament people of Israel or for the New Testament Church and therefore have concluded that the woman cannot be an individual (i.e., Mary). However, this “either-or” proposition is foreign to the biblical worldview, in which individuals often symbolically represent collective groups. For instance, Adam represented all humanity (Rom. 5:19), and Jacob stood for all of Israel (Ps. 44:4). Given this biblical notion called “corporate personality,” the woman in Revelation 12 should be understood as both an individual (Mary) and a symbol for the people of God.

      But for our purposes, once we see that this woman is Mary, the mother of Jesus, it is important to note how she is portrayed as queen in this passage. Her royal office is hinted at by the imagery of the sun, moon, and twelve stars, which recalls the Old Testament story of Joseph’s dream in which the sun, moon, and stars bow down before him, symbolizing his future authority (Gen. 37:9–11). Her queenship is made even clearer by the crown of twelve stars on her head. Just like the queen mother in Jeremiah 13:18, here Mary is wearing a crown, symbolizing her royal office in the kingdom of heaven. In sum, Revelation 12 portrays Mary as the new queen mother in the Kingdom of God, sharing in her son’s rule over the universe.

      We have seen how the Old Testament queen mother tradition serves as an important background for understanding Mary’s royal office. Indeed, the New Testament portrays Mary as the queen mother par excellence. Thus, prayers, hymns, and art giving honour to Mary’s queenship are most fitting biblical responses for Christians. In honouring her as queen mother we do not take anything away from Christ’s glory, but rather we exalt him even more by recognizing the great work he has done in her and through her.

      Understanding Mary as queen mother sheds light on her important intercessory role in the Christian life. Just like the queen mother of the Davidic kingdom, Mary serves as advocate for the people in the Kingdom of God today. Thus, we should approach our queen mother with confidence, knowing that she carries our petitions to her royal son and that he responds to her as Solomon did to Bathsheba: “I will never refuse you.”

      I hope this helps and blessing for the journey.

       

  6. Jonathan Koger says:

    I believe that Catholicism is a man made road to Godlessness. Jesus said a man will be known for its works like a tree is known for its fruit. Catholicism has brought forth unbiblical principals, traditions, practices, Idolatry and more. the catholic church is known for child molestation, forgiving sins with money and taking pagan rituals and worship and creating so called christian tradition out of them. what communion does light have with darkness? if you ask me and a lot of bible scholars the Catholic church is the great whore written about in the book of revelations. You often will here a catholic say…”I was born catholic and I will die catholic!” well ash’s to ashes and dust to dust, but your very soul is what you should be worried about. I don’t know if this will be posted but you all need to hear the truth and I can back it all up with bible…because if you are a true believer you will believe the bible!

  7. Psalm 91 Warrior says:

    Thanks for this excellent exposition! Do you know of any books that show any early Christians who were not Catholics? Catholics bank on Church History as their proof and I want to be able to witness to Catholics with more information about early Church history. Thanks.

    • Roman Catholicism has evolved over the centuries, and keeps changing. By historical standards, today’s post Vatican II Catholicism is totally apostate relative to the Catholicism of the Middle ages – see mostholyfamilymonastery.com for proof of that.

      The idea that the bishop of Rome should rule over all bishops was first proposed in the 6th century I believe with Gregory the Great, or around that time. In any case, it was not the received belief at first. The Eastern bishops formally rejected the idea by the 11th century anyway. THEIR traditions had been evolving differently than the traditions in the West. The point is that the traditions were different because they kept changing slowly, depending on where you lived.

      At the same time I would say that the early Christian writers we have records of did not think like today’s protestants in all ways. They had a greater emphasis on good works and were more concerned about defining what was and was not heresy. A lot of the core theology of who Christ is was still being settled on in Greek intellectual terms and they had to deal with heretics like Arius and others who denied the divinity of Christ. The battle lines were in different places then.

      The early church morphed over some centuries into the Roman Catholic church. It was a gradual process, but greatly accelerated by the acceptance of Christianity as a State religion by the Roman emperors.

      Church history is a very sad story actually in many places.

      • Brian A. Atkins-Worthy says:

        I am a Christian, and a sinner. I believe in Christ as my Savior, nothing else. I have never seen his face. His image is sacred and all I need is his Word. I have attended many different churches. I recently attended a Catholic Church and after that a Baptist Church. I am a witness that both these churches and many others have not followed God’s word. The Holy Spirit is an unseen force, yet it is a comforter for all. I can envision why God must be upset and disappointed with the church. In the Catholic Church, it was filled with idols. Statues of renditions of saints. Worst of all, en-graven images of renditions of Christ filled the sanctuary. In the Baptist Church, they had a picture of some rendition of Christ. How can these imitations of God please our Master when he warned us not to do these things in the Ten Commandments? Their is no excuse for this! When will we awaken and fall away from these kind of abominations? When will ministers stand up and remove these stumbling blocks from God’s House? I call for Christians everywhere to stand and unite against what the blind can not see. We want our land healed yet we refuse to obey the Word of God. With all my hope…let us change.

    • Rebecca Schwarz says:

      If you read the Bible in Corinthians, Ephesians Thessalonians, Jesus talks to the disciples and people that the you should build your Church on the foundation of Jesus Christ and it should be His church. No where in the Bible are His followers called Catholics, they are called Christians (Christ followers). Catholicism recognizes the Bible, but most of their teachings on based on Gregory (man-made rules and guidelines), not those of Jesus Christ. I don’t recall that Catholic or Catholicism is mentioned in the “BIBLE.”

  8. Thanks for this insight for many have been led astray by the same DOCTRINE
    fred

    • Roy Castellanos says:

      I’m not certain if I understood your stand on the Catholic Church, but I’d like to share with you that I was in the Catholic church for 28 years! I was NOT ALLOWED to read the Bible! It was listed in the back of our church on a list of “BANNED BOOKS”! I was led to JESUS by a young 15 year old girl and when I finally got into GOD’S word I found just how lost I was. For 28 years I had a relationship with the church and trusted them with my very soul! The priest’s advice to me was to ‘live together with my girlfriend’ and if “things went well”, then we could get married! The more I read GOD’S WORD, the more I realized that the Roman Church “WAS NOT” the one true church! In fact, one sure sign that it’s not is the fact that it claims that it is!! I would NEVER go back!! Matthew 16:19 was always read in church to keep us from leaving the church, but just a few verses down on v.23, JESUS himself calls Peter SATAN! “Get thee behind me Satan: thou art an offense unto me!” Peter was truly a great servant of GOD, but with weaknesses like you and I. Don’t get me wrong…I love Catholics! My parents are and I love them dearly, but they need to give their lives and hearts to JESUS and no one else! In closing, let me tell you of something extra ordinary!! I am in a Gospel Band and it consists of a Catholic, a Baptist, Methodist, a Pentecostal,and a First Christian Church member! Yes, we all have ONE PERSON IN COMMON…JESUS CHRIST! We have shared together as ONE for over 20 years and youth from all faiths respond to the Gospel and accept JESUS into their hearts. WE LOVE ALL and want all to come to JESUS and start a relationship with HIM.

      • warrior daughter says:

        The Catholic church is not the true church…They want the whole world to think they are….The true church is not a denomination but it consists of those who are redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb…If you notice, any movie or television show, the characters in these shows run quickly to the catholic church in scenes where they go to church or prayer…Priests are portrayed also in these shows….The media generally does not ask protestant pastors questions about spirituality or crisis events but they interview priests for the answer…Many people through out the world are deceived into thinking they only have to go to the priest for forgiveness or do penance or be baptized or work hard in the church but the only way is not through these means or any other means man has dreamed up but it is only through the forgiviness of sins through Jesus Christ’s blood…..

        • If you study the history of the Church of Christ (the official name of the Catholic Church — used today to include ALL Christians), you will see that Jesus’ disciples and their followers formed what clearly became the early Catholic Church. In fact, the disciples of John (the author of John’s gospel) already used the term ‘Catholic’, which means ‘universal.’ The most important traditions of Catholicism also can be clearly traced to the very beginning of Christianity (such as the eucharistic Communion). Does that mean that everything the Catholic Church does or has done is on the mark? Absolutely not – and neither were the 12 apostles perfect. But do some additional research before categorically denouncing every Catholic teaching. Study books about the early Christians and read the writings of the many thoughtful, formerly Protestant Christians (ranging from GK Chesterton to Peter Kreeft) who after much study and prayer decided to join the ranks of the original Church of Christ.

          • Timothy Luke says:

            It is things like “the disciples of John” wrote the gospel of John being stated as “fact” that dooms your discussion. I never heard of such a thing, and yet you state it as a known fact. Until your facts are straight, how can I hear you? The Bible states the gospel of John to be just that, the Gospel of John. Of course the numerous parallels with Catholicsim and Babylonian Mysticism lead one to the conclusion their foundation is found more there than with the disciples of Christ.

          • BenjaminCaleb says:

            Where exactly is the term “catholic” used again? You should give a scripture reference when making such an outlandish claim. Sounds like a special “translation” in which words and phrases are CHANGED to fit narrow views…and not truth.

        • jarret dennis cueto says:

          how can u say the catholic church is not true when the pentacostel church is a man made religion which was founded by charles f. parkham

      • I don’t believe your story about some banned bible. The catholic church allows its members to read the bible and catholic book stores sell catholic bibles all day long. This 15 yr old girl led you into heresy and why would you follow a 15 yr old unless your a pervert?

        • The Catholic Church doesn’t attempt to ban the Bible now as far as I know. It did ban Bibles in the Middle Ages because it felt it was not a good idea to have anyone reading and discovering it for themselves, but only as interpreted by the authorised priests.

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