What do you think of a Catholic reading…

What do you think of a Catholic reading the Bible? I think, of course, that is a good thing. Yet, at least with regard to one Catholic, I wonder if it is.

So troubled by reading the book of Genesis that one writer wrote of her troubling sentiments. Since she had much difficulty putting her arms around what she read, she started coming to a realization that she, evidently, is the determiner of what is moral, or what God would/should do.

This approach to God and the Bible fits exactly 2 Timothy 4:3-4.

http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/17/living/catholic-reads-the-bible-week-3/

#bible, #catholic, #genesis

If The Catholic Church Were Biblically Wise

If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the vacancy of the pope to stay just that way – vacant. Many Catholics (and even some people who aren’t Catholic???) worry about their church because it has no head. If they understood the true biblical nature of the church they would know that the church is never without her head. Jesus is the head of the church and his reign as such has not ended (Colossians 1:18, Ephesians 1:22-23). Two heads are not better than one!

If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the vacancy of “Peter’s throne” to stay just that way – vacant. Many Catholics (and even some people who aren’t Catholic???) worry about finding the right person to continue Peter’s legacy. If they understood the true nature of Peter from the Bible they would know that Peter would never allow himself to sit on a “throne” over the church, they would know that Peter would never allow people to “bow and kiss his ring” and they would know that the Bible never refers to an office in the church called the “pope” (Acts 10:24-26, 1 Corinthians 12:27-28). Peter never sat with a golden scepter upon any “throne” above the church which Jesus Himself rules with a rod of iron (Psalm 2:8-9, Revelation 2:26-27).

If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would allow the silence of uninspired and fallible words to stay just that way – silent. Many Catholics (and even some who aren’t Catholics???) worry about the lack of spiritual guidance without a pope. If they understood the true biblical nature of the church they would know that they should listen to the inspired and infallible word of God that the church is called to follow. The word of God guides the church of God, the church of God does not guide the word of God (Ephesians 3:3-5; 2 Peter 1:3; Hebrews 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:15-17).

If the Catholic church were biblically wise they would know there’s a difference between universal unity based upon error and universal unity based upon the truth…that’s one big if though!

endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:3-6)

#bible, #catholic, #catholic-church, #catholicism, #christianity, #god, #pope, #religion, #wisdom

A Local Catholic Apologist

While in Guam I saw a letter to the editor that challenged a previous letter concerning God’s first commandment in the Decalogue. The author of the letter is Tim Rohr (of Agat, Guam); he argues that the prohibition against a graven image of any kind is not to be taken literally. To do so is to relegate not only all religious icons to the ash heap, but also non-religious statutes and figurines of anything to the same pile.

As a local Catholic apologist he thinks he has scored a point when he says, “But we know not to take it literally because a few chapters later (chapter 25) God commands Moses to make two statues of ‘beaten gold’ (cherubim). A couple books later, (Numbers) God instructs Moses to make a bronze serpent, put in on a pole, and tell the people to ‘look upon it’ and be healed. According to Zerzan’s interpretation, it appears God was the first to break his own First Commandment – twice!” (The Pacific Daily News, 12/28/2011, p. 15; all mistakes in the quotation belong to Tim Rohr)

I respect the effort of the man who has conviction with regard to his belief. Lord knows we need more people to stand up for what they believe.

However, the paragraph above illustrates a lack of biblical knowledge. God’s first command to the Israelites is not to be taken literally, we are told. I wonder if God’s command relative to Sabbath observance was not to be taken literally by the Israelites. Moreover, I wonder if God’s prohibition against adultery was not to be taken literally. The only reason there is opposition to the command’s prohibition is because it opposes a practice by the Catholics on the island of Guam.

Does the fabrication of the Ark of the Covenant show that God is confused in the institution of His command (or commands)? The commandment of God to the Israelites is plain and not easily missed (unless one wants to miss it). There is to be no religious devotion to any relic! One can’t make an image (a religious relic) of God because no one has seen Him; there is no pictorial image of Jesus for one to reproduce into a religious relic; and most certainly there is nothing of a similar sort with regard to Mary. Why, then, the effort to make religious icons for man to bow before? Among the many reasons that might be presented, one of them is surely associated with idolatry. God is spirit and those who worship Him must do so in spirit and in truth.

The Ark of the Covenant was not a religious relic to be worshiped at all; it was placed in a location that represented God’s presence and mercy. In fact, the only one to see the relic was the High Priest and he could only see it at certain God-ordained times. Never was the High Priest to bow before it.

With regard to the account in Numbers 21 if Tim Rohr does not know any more than that which he shared with us, then I suspect his knowledge on other biblical topics will be just as flawed. Does he actually think the bronze serpent of the events in chapter 21 was a religious relic (to any degree)? Even if he does not regard this as a religious relic, the fact that he would include this as a violation of the Lord’s command (if the words of the first commandment are to be taken literally) is just plain ridiculous. It was most certainly not a religious relic, and when it became one it was destroyed (2 Kings 18:4).

In conclusion, we have learned that to promote a practice that has no sanction in Scripture all one needs to do is to take literal word meanings and replace it with figurative meanings. This is done, however, when it serves a useful purpose – like perverting the truth!


#apologist, #catholic, #guam, #idolatry, #ten-commandments

Catholics Come Home

Letter to editor,

The other day (Monday) while I watched a little bit of the collegiate national championship football game I saw this commercial that others had been telling me about. It promoted a website that I thought I would peruse. The television commercial was a message to the many Catholics that have wandered away from the church; there is an appeal for each of them to “come home.” The commercial appeals to people with its positive message.

I appreciate the conviction the Catholic Church has regarding itself, but it is a conviction that is worth challenging. For instance, on the website we read that the Catholic Church is the one Jesus founded 2000 years ago. If one were to subtract that number from our current year that would mean that that the Catholic Church was founded by Jesus when He was a teenager! It is likely they meant something like “nearly” 2000 years ago. But is it true? NO

Look through the pages of the New Testament and see if one can find “Catholic Church” (or anything equivalent) even one time; for that matter, I even encourage you to look in a Bible that is printed and sanctioned by the Catholic Church. It won’t be found. Moreover, look throughout the pages of the New Testament and see if “cardinal”, “pope”, “archbishop”, “monsignor” (among many other terms) is even mentioned. If they are not mentioned (and they are not) why attribute to Jesus what He did not say? The Catholic Church has an answer – for they have been at this for quite a while. Their answer, however, has appearance of substance when, in fact, it is as shallow as a mile wide and an inch deep!

I think it is great there is a promotion of one’s (the Catholic Church’s) conviction in public discourse. Let us have a debate on that topic and allow others to investigate the truthfulness of the claims.

#catholic, #letter-to-editor

Can We Be Saved by Works?

My article today at Forthright is the second in a series of articles on the Catholic doctrine of Purgatory. They base their doctrine on works salvation, which is completely foreign to the Gospel.

If we can be saved because of works, we are ostensibly saying that we can live perfectly enough that God would be forced to save us or be shamed before the world. That is laughable but is exactly the idea behind Catholic salvation.

I hope you will read Purgatory 2 and give your thoughts on their false claims.

#catholic, #forthright, #grace, #purgatory, #salvation, #works

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Calendar Apostasy

Calendar Apostasy
God sent His people, Israel, into the Promised Land under the leadership of Joshua, but with these “statutes and judgments” in Moses’ final declaration to them:
“These are the statutes and judgments which you shall be careful to observe in the land which the LORD God of your fathers is giving you to possess, all the days that you live on the earth. You shall utterly destroy all the places where the nations which you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains and on the hills and under every green tree. And you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and burn their wooden images with fire; you shall cut down the carved images of their gods and destroy their names from that place. You shall not worship the LORD your God with such things. But you shall seek the place where the LORD your God chooses, out of all your tribes, to put His name for His dwelling place; and there you shall go. There you shall take your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tithes, the heave offerings of your hand, your vowed offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks” (Deuteronomy 12:1-6 NKJV).
The people in that land were pagans and idolaters who worshiped the Creation rather than the Creator. They worshiped the various “gods” which supposedly represented the powers involved in life on Earth. God did not allow His people to simply adopt, nor adapt, the Canaanites’ religious practices as worship to Him. All of: “the places where the nations which you shall dispossess served their gods,” “their altars,” “their sacred pillars,” “their wooden images,” “the carved images,” were to be “utterly” destroyed so they would have no influence among the Israelites, whatsoever. Only the specified worship in the manner God described would be acceptable to God. The Israelites were not to be allied to the worship proscribed by the seasons, but that which was determined by God.

After the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2 when the kingdom of Christ was established on earth, the Gospel of Christ was to be preached to every creature (Mark 16:15-16). While in Lystra, Paul healed a lame man (Acts 14:8-10), but then the idolaters sought to worship both Paul and Barnabas:
“Now when the people saw what Paul had done, they raised their voices, saying in the Lycaonian language, ‘The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!’ And Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. Then the priest of Zeus, whose temple was in front of their city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, intending to sacrifice with the multitudes. But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard this, they tore their clothes and ran in among the multitude, crying out and saying, ‘Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men with the same nature as you, and preach to you that you should turn from these useless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them, who in bygone generations allowed all nations to walk in their own ways. Nevertheless He did not leave Himself without witness, in that He did good, gave us rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.’ And with these sayings they could scarcely restrain the multitudes from sacrificing to them” (Acts 14:11-18 NKJV).
God’s inspired Apostle Paul stopped any idolatrous practice from being used as an explanation for, or an application to, Christianity. There is nothing in idolatrous teachings or practices which should be admitted or accepted by Christians.

Catholicism, whether Roman or Greek, has incorporated idolatrous practices and seasonal calendars into what they call “Christian,” when all they have done is find some Scripture or event in Christ’s life with which to “tag” what would otherwise be a rejected practice. The disciples were called “Christians” by God first in Antioch (Acts 11:26), but Catholicism has spread the term, like an umbrella, over practices of paganism and idolatry. No Christian in the New Testament ever celebrated an “Easter,” “Christmas,” “Lent,” “Seder,” or any of the 40 days of mishmash found on today’s religious calendars, which are mistakenly termed a “Christian Calendar.”

No denomination is “Protestant” that follows Catholicism’s religious calendar. “Seder” is simply a re-creation of the Jewish Passover, which Jesus died to remove (Colossians 2:14-16); “Yule” is from witches, “Eoster/Ishtar” is from idolaters, and “Fertility rites” demonstrated by rabbits and eggs, are the very things forbidden by Paul (Galatians 4:8-11); and “Lent” is hypocritical display of a misunderstanding of “fasting” condemned by Jesus (Matthew 6:16-18). The Lord’s death, represented in the Lord’s Supper, must be kept free from the impurities of falsehood (1 Corinthians 10:15-22). Everyone who keeps special days on a religious calendar did “not so learn Christ” (Ephesians 4:20).

To be a disciple of Christ, one must believe the historical and factual evidence of His life found in the New Testament (John 20:30-31; 21:25) and obey His command to be baptized “for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38). The only events in Christ’s life to be memorialized are: (1) His death, burial, and resurrection first, when a sinner repents and is baptized into death, Romans 6:1-6, then raised “in newness of life”; and secondly, when Christians observe the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 11:23-26); and (2) the day of His resurrection remembered each week when Christians assemble (“the first day of the week,” Luke 24:1-9; Acts 20:7). There are no other special or seasonal days for Christians, according to the New Testament. “The churches of Christ” (Romans 16:16) never observed a religious calendar that would lead them into apostasy (1 Timothy 4:1-3), because those who follow such stand contrary to inspired truth (2 Timothy 4:1-5). “The churches of Christ salute you” but we salute Jesus Christ above all.
—–John T. Polk II

#catholic, #christian-calendar, #easter

The Arrogance of the Catholic Church

“Pope Benedict XVI has made a sweeping exoneration of the Jewish people for the death of Jesus Christ, tackling one of the most controversial issues in Christianity in a new book. In ‘Jesus of Nazareth – Part II’ excerpts released Wednesday, Benedict explains biblically and theologically why there is no basis in Scripture for the argument that the Jewish people as a whole were responsible for Jesus’ death” (Decatur Herald & Review, 3/3/2011, A8).

In case the wording of this story might be suspect, in 1965, the Second Vatican Council document, Nostra Aetate, declared that the death of the Lord “could not be attributed to the Jews as a whole at the time or today.” In fact, according to the pope’s study, it was only a few Temple leaders and a small group of supporters who were primarily responsible for the Lord’s death.

And Peter said, “…this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men)…. Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified” (Acts 2:23 and 36).

What may be said about this? In one respect it is true that the sins of the individual had brought forth our Lord into this world and He, willingly, went to the cross on our behalf as our Savior. On the other hand, let it not be minimized what Peter said occurred. The “house of David” sent our Lord to the cross as a criminal!

If the report in the newspaper is accurate, the Catholic Church is wrong – as is often the case.

#catholic, #death, #jews, #pope

U of I and Intolerance

There is nothing like the University of Illinois – the bastion of liberal intolerance! Recently, a university professor (adjunct) was fired from his teaching position because he taught Catholic doctrine in a course on Catholicism! The name of the course was “Introduction to Catholicism and Modern Catholic Thought.” Evidently, a student went into this class for a singular purpose of malevolence. When inquiry was made into the church’s teaching on homosexuality and natural law, the student took exception that the audacity of the Catholic Church was that it could oppose homosexuality on the basis of natural law. This was conveniently and lovingly interpreted as “hate speech.”

The notion that “freedom of thought” can be expounded on a state run university that promotes the freedom of ideas is as ludicrous as atheist believing in God! Liberalism cannot win in the battle of ideas with contrary thoughts and, consequently, to solve this potential problem all contrary thoughts opined need to be oppressed. One professor said, “The e-mails sent by Dr. Howell violate university standards of inclusivity, which would then entitle us to have him discontinue his teaching arrangement with us” (Ann Mester, associate dean at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences).

Source: Mattoon Journal-Gazette, Saturday, July 10, section A-6

#catholic, #homosexuality, #liberalism

Some Facts About Christmas

Jon Gary Williams presents some important facts about Christmas.

#catholic, #christmas, #mass