Friday, February 16, 2007

Providence

Well, I woke up very late this morning.

And I don't regret it one bit.

I was standing on the platform (as you know, here in St. Louis, it is bitterly cold and we have had ice and snow lately), when this guy comes on the platform with nothing on his balding head!!! I challenged him about that (in a friendly way) immediately. He said it wasn't that bad.

I knew it: He wasn't from here. He said he was. Really? As I probed deeper, he spoke the truth: he's originally from South Dakota. Hah! I knew it.

I swung the conversation to Spiritual things by asking if he had taken the good person test. He said that he hadn't and expressed disdain for it. I asked him why. He said that it wasn't a fair test--no one could pass it. I told him that I knew of One Person who actually had. (Of course, you can't see capitalization in vocal conversation.) Then he surprised me: he said that he didn't think that Jesus was perfect!!!

I wonder how many people that? See, if Jesus was not perfect, then He wasn't God. And if He isn't God, then He is a liar and not able to save anyone. If He never sinned, then He can pay for our sins. If He died for His own sins, then He is not the Messiah (Daniel 9:26a), and our faith is in vain.

I asked the man what his religious background was (after all this, mind you). His answer surprised me even more: Roman Catholic.

Now, anyone who knows me, knows that I believe that the Roman church lies to all of her people and deliberately leads them into Hell for her personal financial gain. I also know that the Roman church is the single largest producer of atheists in the world--not the public schools! (This may explain her disdain for Communists, which I don't share: Commies are people, they need Jesus. They don't need democracy, they need Jesus. Jesus is not America, Jesus is not the church, Jesus is God. Let's not forget that.) But I never in my wildest dreams thought that they would not believe that Jesus never sinned. Mary is immaculate, but Jesus is not??? I dearly hope that this was an isolated case.

So, anyway, I asked him why he picked Catholicism. He laughed, said it was more chosen for him than anything (which is typical Catholic practice). So I asked him, "Which religion would you choose if you had a choice?" He said that he didn't know. He had problems with all organized religion (which I can understand: if I wasn't already a Christian and didn't already know the difference between the fakers and the real followers of Jesus, I wouldn't want to be a Christian, either. Especially when supposedly sound people are trying to erase the lines between the disciples and the hypocrites.)

So I explained to him the difference between real Christianity and every other religion: In Biblical Christianity, there is nothing you can do to earn God's favor; we have already blown it by breaking God's laws (Romans 3:23; if you don't believe it, take this test) and our only hope is mercy and forgiveness in Jesus Christ; in every other religion, there is always a way for you to "bribe the Judge," so to speak: child sacrifice (or other sacrifices, including, but not limited to, fasting, walking on your knees, paying for indulgences, etc.), being kind to people, etc.

I told him that the proof of our "repentance toward God and faith toward Jesus Christ" (Acts 20:21) would be that we would read our Bibles daily and obey what we read. It would not earn us anything in God's eyes as far as salvation is concerned, it would simply be proof that we have truly repented. Because we would no longer be getting our orders from ourselves, we would be getting our instructions from God.

Then he said something that I always hear from people who don't read the Bible: you're always going to put your human construction on it--you'll never actually know The Truth as Jesus so very clearly promised in John 8:30-32 to those who believe on Him and continue in His Word--you'll always have your own misguided version of the truth. So I told him about God's promise in James 1:5 to freely give to all men who ask wisdom to know the truth. If we are truly submitted to God (instead of continuing in rebellion against Him), then we will ask for wisdom not to twist His Word to our liking. And He will give it to us.

And thus we boarded the train. He sat down. I stayed standing. And I'm glad I did. There was a full house today. And most people listened. One kid even took his earphone out of his ear to hear me better. It was a glorious day!!

Oh, and, coming home tonight, I also witnessed to a young man (who was humble and listened) and an older lady (70 years old, by her confession; she didn't listen). Please pray for them both.

23 comments:

Timothy said...

Greetings! Found your post via Google and have some comments...

The person stated; "said that he didn't think that Jesus was perfect!!!"

You stated; "they would not believe that Jesus never sinned. Mary is immaculate, but Jesus is not???"

You seem to confuse several ideas here.

First, the person said that they "didn't think that Jesus was perfect" which is not saying "Jesus never sinned." You seem to equate the two, but the person didn't seem to.

Second, you seem to confuse the concept of immaculate (created without sin) with impecability (inability to sin). I fail to see how being created without sin, for which there is Biblical precedent, is germain to "Jesus wasn't perfect."

Third, it's generally a bad idea to extrapolate the beliefs of one person to a much larger group. There's a reason why pollsters sample a large group versus just a few. Your use of "they", meaning Catholics, is unwarranted.

I would also like to point out that the terms "Roman Catholic" and "Roman church" are disparaging terms used by non-Catholics to denegrate the Catholic Church. The correct name is the Catholic Church. Satan has poured out a lot of poison against the Catholic Church and you likely didn't know better.

You stated; "...deliberately leads them into Hell for her personal financial gain."

You made a bold statement, now defend it. What proof do you offer?

You further stated; "I also know that the Roman church is the single largest producer of atheists in the world--not the public schools!"

Again what proof have you. I'm curious as to how you quantified and compared the two.

Finally, you stated; "our only hope is mercy and forgiveness in Jesus Christ; in every other religion, there is always a way for you to "bribe the Judge," so to speak: child sacrifice (or other sacrifices, including, but not limited to, fasting, walking on your knees, paying for indulgences, etc.), being kind to people, etc."

Amen. Catholic also believe (and the Catholic Church teaches) that salvation is by God's grace.

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Actually, Timothy, he did say that he thought that Jesus had sinned. I'm not the one confused, I was actually there. You were not. Please do not make statements like that. It is very offensive.

By the way, the Roman CULT has been showing her own wicked heart in recent days--Satan is not to blame. You really need to read Matthew 12:33-37 very carefully.

Roman Catholic Church is the title of the church. Non-catholics did not invent the name, Rome did. Blame them.

I could defend my statement about financial gain, but I don't have time to recount the numerous money-making schemes of the Vatican. Luther dealt with some. Maybe you should look his writings up.

"Catholics believe that salvation is by God's grace." No, they do not. The Roman cult teaches that works are necessary for salvation. The Vatican teaches that God "graciously" gives us some works that we can do in order to gain salvation. The Bible teaches that salvation is "not by works of righteousness which we have done..."

In fact, Paul says, "...if [salvation is] by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace: otherwise work is no more work." (Romans 11:6) Works are not part of grace. Works are the evidence of faith, not part of salvation!!! Rome teaches otherwise. Rome is wrong.

Furthermore, the real point of the post is that this guy didn't know how to get to Heaven! That is the most important knowledge one could ever possess!! That is why I go out there almost everyday. Because people don't know the most important Truth of all.

Timothy said...

Greetings! Just following up...

"Roman Catholic Church is the title of the church. Non-catholics did not invent the name, Rome did. Blame them."

Nope. The correct name is the Catholic Church. Again, the name "Roman Catholic" is a disparaging term that non-Catholics invented and use. You seem to prefer the myth to the truth.

[Wikipedia: "Theologians of the English Reformation at the end of the sixteenth century, who saw themselves too as Catholics, were the first to use the term "Roman Catholic" to refer to those who were faithful to the Bishop of Rome"]

"I could defend my statement about financial gain, but I don't have time to recount the numerous money-making schemes of the Vatican."

Actually, you do. Otherwise you are just making unfounded accusations and are spreading deceitful lies and myths. Neither of which is acceptable Christian behavior. Christians should always seek the truth.

"The Roman cult teaches that works are necessary for salvation."

Nope. Catholics teach salvation is by God's grace.

You don't get to define what Catholics believe, Catholics do.

I'm sure you have been told otherwise by non-Catholic sources. But, the truth is far different. Again, seek the truth.

"Paul says, "...if [salvation is] by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace: otherwise work is no more work." (Romans 11:6)"

Amen. Catholics believe the scriptures 100%. Salvation is by grace. No arguement from the Catholics.

"Furthermore, the real point of the post is that this guy didn't know how to get to Heaven!"

Granted. But, that doesn't give one free license to post lies and myths about other Christians. You could have just as easily made your point without disparaging the Catholic Church and repeating malicious falsehoods.

Again, seek the truth about the Catholic Church. Our beliefs and catechism are not a secret and have stood the test of 2,000 years time:

The Catechism of the Catholic Church
http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Point still is, this guy didn't know the Gospel.

And, no, I have read the Roman Catholic Church's teachings on salvation. They say that if you say that you do not need works to get to Heaven, then you are damned (anathema, is the term they used). I read that from a Roman Catholic Website on the Second Vatican Council.

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Timothy, you should read this: Jesus and Adolf Hitler.

Timothy said...

Ok. Read it.

There are number of glaring errors in the first two paragraphs. Particularly the misrepresentations of Catholic doctrine.

After the first two paragraphs, the author switches to Lutherans and then no mention of any particular Christian denomination.

I agree with the author that the Catholic Church is the Christian Church and the Pope is the leader (Christ's chamberlain, Matthew 16:18-19, Isa 22:22ff) of the Christan Church.

If a martian landed on earth and saw that there were 1.2 billion Catholics and that they made up over half of all Christians, the martian would logically conclude that the Catholic Church was Christ's visible Church.

Further, the fact that over half the world's 6 billion people also recognize the Pope as the spokesperson for Christianity would also lead the martian to a logical conclusion as to who speaks for Christ's Church.

There's valid reasons why 15 million people worldwide entered the Catholic Church last year and another 15 million will again this year. Its not the apostate church that Satan has told you that it is via other poisoned minds.

Author stated; "it shouldn't surprise us that Jews are very difficult to reach with the gospel.

No, I haven't found that to be true. A Jewish friend now accepts Christ and the Catholic faith. He's even attended RCIA classes and now defends the Catholic faith.

So why is it that Israel Zolli, the head rabbi in Rome, converted to Catholicism after the war?

http://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/archive-2006-1115-pius-XII-Silence.htm

"Only the Church stood squarely across the path of Hitler's campaign for suppressing truth."
...Albert Einstein

---

Regarding your earlier post; "They say that if you say that you do not need works to get to Heaven, then you are damned (anathema, is the term they used). I read that from a Roman Catholic Website on the Second Vatican Council. "

You read it, but you failed to understand it.

'Our justification comes from the grace of God. Grace is favor, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life.'
(Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1996)

Our doctrines on justification are here:

http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/pt3sect1chpt3art2.htm

The footnotes at the bottom provide the scripture references. Catholic doctrine is found 100% in the scriptures.

God bless and always guide you in truth...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

I'll have you know, the author of that article does not believe that the Roman cult is the true church of God. It is Satan's design to confuse people that she is. However, I have yet to speak to a Roman Catholic who actually understands the Gospel.

God does not provide grace as "the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life." God's grace is the saving of us by His finished work on the Cross!!

We do nothing but turn to God in humility and trust, and He does the saving, He does the adoption, He does the making new. Our works are the evidence of His work in us, not the accomplishment of the path He puts us on. Big difference.

I did not misunderstand the Vatican's teaching. They were very clear. If you don't do works, then God cannot help you get saved. In the Bible, God saves you, and that is why you do the works. Big difference.

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Oh, as far as Jews go, most Jews aren't Christians, so don't go using a few isolated examples to prove a rather invalid point. And it is the Roman cult's false teaching about God's chosen people (and the agreement with that teaching by other supposed churches) that fomented the systematic destruction of Jews in Europe. And the Jews have not forgotten it--just as Satan hoped.

That's why he uses a false church to represent Christianity throughout the world.

Timothy said...

Greetings!

You stated; "God's grace is the saving of us by His finished work on the Cross!! "

However, scripture states:

"Grace and favor you granted me, and your providence has preserved my spirit." (Job 10:12)

How is it that Job received grace centuries before the 'saving of us by His finished work on the Cross"?

There's also the problem of:

"You will show faithfulness to Jacob, and grace to Abraham, As you have sworn to our fathers from days of old." (Mic 7:20)

Another OT verse concerning grace written long before the the 'saving of us by His finished work on the Cross".

Then in the NT we find:

"When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart," (Acts 11:23)

Are you claiming that this verse states that Barnabas saw "saving of us by His finished work on the Cross"."

"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." (Romans 1:7)

Paul is not saying 'saving of us by His finished work on the Cross' to you. Also, if they already have grace, why is Paul wishing them more grace beyond the 'saving of us by His finished work on the Cross'?

"Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us exercise them: if prophecy, in proportion to the faith;" (Rom 12:6)

Romans 12:6 seems to indicate different types of grace or different amounts of grace are given to us. That doesn't seem to fit your definition of grace, but fits the Catholic doctrine of grace.

Grace seems to have either a definition other or in addition to the narrow definition you provided.

Also, where in scripture do I find your vary narrow definition of grace?

I found 112 citations for grace and none matched your definition. I suspect your definition may be a tradition of man. We all know what the Bible says about tradition, don't we?

God bless...

- Timothy

ps. I hope nothing ill has befallen you, as you've not posted for about a week. Our campus ministry will keep you in our prayers.

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Okay, none of those verses on grace talk about God "helping us" to achieve any sort of righteousness--which righteousness is required to enter Heaven. God does not allow sin into Heaven (Revelation 21:8; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

Think about it this way (an imperfect illustration): Do you like Pizza? Imagine that I put a dog turd on your pizza--would you eat it?

What if I only put a small dog turd on your pizza? Would you still refuse to eat it?

What if I grated the dog turd and just sprinkled a bit on your pizza? Would you eat it now?

What if I put some dog turd on your pizza and wiped it off--would you eat it now?

No matter how good that pizza is, there is no way you will allow any of it into your mouth--because the dog turd has polluted it beyond repair! You need a new pizza!

In a similar fashion, no matter how good a person you are, sin (lying, stealing, murder [Jesus said that calling names or being angry without cause deserves the same punishment as murder], adultery [Jesus said who ever looks with lust commits adultery in the heart], dishonoring of parents, idolatry [inventing a god that you are comfortable with, instead of trembling before the God who actually is], rebellion, blasphemy, etc.) will keep you out of Heaven.

All religion does is wipe sin off. You need to be born again. You need to be made new. You cannot recreate yourself. That's why salvation is a gift, and that is why you cannot lose your salvation once you have truly received your salvation. The only question is, "Are you really saved?" That question is answered by the Book of First John.

Roman Catholicism's grace leaves some sin on you to be burned off in purgatory. Such a state is not acceptable before God. Hell is the destiny of anyone who dies in their sins, as evidenced by Jesus' stern warning to the Pharisees (John 8:20-24; cf. John 3:16-21). This is not the grace of the Bible.

"But what about sin after salvation?" The new pizza is never marred by the dog turd. God never counts those sins against us. Yes, we are commanded to walk in righteousness (Romans 6); yes, God will chastise us for our sins, because He loves us (Hebrews 12:5-11); yes, God will take us out of here for dishonoring Him (1 John 5:16-17); but the righteousness of Christ is not touchable by our sin, and our records have been switched with His, so that He bore our sin, and we bear His righteousness (Romans 4:5-8).

Thank you for your concern for my health. I am fine, I just haven't been eating properly lately, and I was exhausted over the weekend, so I didn't post much at all.

Timothy said...

Greetings...

You stated; "Okay, none of those verses on grace talk about God "helping us..."

Correct. I wasn't posting texts to prove my definition of grace, but to disprove your definition of grace. Which they, in fact, do. The burden of proof lies with you, not I. You have yet to prove your definition of grace.

>"Roman Catholicism's grace leaves some sin on you to be burned off in purgatory."

Again with the disparaging terms and lack of Christian charity after being given the truth. I suppose bad habits are hard to break.

There is no such thing as Catholicism's grace, only God's grace.

Purgatory does not burn off sin. In fact, purgatory has nothing to do with salvation. There's a good primer on purgatory here:

http://www.star.ucl.ac.uk/~vgg/rc/aplgtc/hahn/m4/pg.html

>"Hell is the destiny of anyone who dies in their sins,..."

Yes. The eternal penalty due to sin is hell.

Yet, the Bible tell us that there are two kinds of sin, including one which is not deadly.
(1 John 5:16)

>""But what about sin after salvation?" ... God never counts those sins against us."

Depends on one's definition of 'counts', doesn't it?

While the eternal penalty due to sin is hell, sin also has temporal penalties, which Christ did not remove.

God does and will punish us for those sins committed after salvation. We are forgiven, but forgiveness does not mean that we will not be punished. (Matthew 5:25-6, Galatians 6:7, 2 Cor.5: 10)

Your mistaken beliefs on Catholic doctrine appear due to definitions of terms and the resulting misunderstandings. Understandable.

God bless and may he give you rest...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

There is no lack of Christian charity, Timothy. That organization has been called the Roman Catholic Church for centuries, and I am not going to let some (pardon the term) "Johnny-come-lately" tell me differently!

By "Roman Catholicism's grace" I meant the doctrine of grace as expounded by the Second Vatican Council. I don't need your apologists to tell me what my eyes can see very plainly.

As to your citing of 1 John 5:16, that is simply twisting Scripture. John is here talking about sin that does not lead to physical death, not spiritual death. The reason that he says about the sin unto death, "I do not say that he should pray for it," is that there are no prayers to be said for the dead. They are gone, nothing you say on this side does anything for them. I know that the Roman Church (I have refrained from calling it a cult to this point, but you're pushing my buttons) teaches otherwise, so it comes as no surprise that you "interpret" it this way. For an example of sin unto death (or two), read Acts 5:1-11 and 12:20-24. The Bible defines its own terms, the church should simply heed them.

One more thing: please stop insulting my intelligence by telling me that you understand how my "ignorance" of the teaching of Rome makes me so angry with them. I am not ignorant. I have looked up Rome's own websites to make sure that I have not misstated what they teach. You try to put a positive spin on what they say, because you like them. I don't like their doctrines, so I call it like I see it. It may not have the favorable terminology that you want to use, but my description of their teaching is not inaccurate.

Timothy said...

Greetings! Sorry for the delay, but I had a lot of other comments to follow up with.

Glad you're stronger and eating better. Breakfast is important. Got to fuel up for the tasks ahead.

On to our discussions...

>" That organization has been called the Roman Catholic Church for centuries, and I am not going to let some (pardon the term) "Johnny-come-lately" tell me differently!"

Correct, in that, non-Catholics have consistently called the Catholic Church the "Roman Catholic Church".

As for not telling you differently, well that's already occured and is now water under the bridge. You know the historical truth and have decided for whatever reason to ignore it and follow your own personal prejudices. So much for truth...

>"...your citing of 1 John 5:16, that is simply twisting Scripture."

I don't believe my mentioning 1 John 5:16 and pointing out that it refers to sin which is not deadly is twisting scripture.

You stated; "Hell is the destiny of anyone who dies in their sins,..."

You followed my posting of 1 John 5:16 by stating; "John is here talking about sin that does not lead to physical death, not spiritual death."

When I examine the scriptures before and after 1 John 5:16, as you recommend, I find that the discussion is regarding eternal (spiritual)life and not physical life. Therefore, 1 John 5:16 seems to be clearly stating that there is sin which is not deadly to eternal (spiritual) life. No twisting required.

How did you arrive at your interpretation that 1 John 5:16 means physical life when the verses around it are discussing eternal life?

>"...please stop insulting my intelligence by telling me that you understand how my "ignorance" of the teaching of Rome makes me so angry with them. I am not ignorant."

Well, of course not. Not once anywhere did I ever accuse you of ignorance nor of being ignorant.

I did state that you had confused several ideas with each other, that there were some errors in a few of your statements, and that you had some mistaken beliefs about the Catholic faith due to differences in definitions.

I have been more than charitable in giving you the benefit of doubt that you were not acting out of malice, but out of genuine Christian love and concern, based on your non-Catholic interpretation of Catholic teaching.

You, by contrast, have offered a poor witness by continuing to disparage the Catholic faith by your choice of words and your repulsive pizza analogy.

>"(I have refrained from calling it a cult to this point, but you're pushing my buttons"

No, you have NOT "...refrained from calling it a cult to this point," Perhaps in one specific post, but you're fond of combining the words Roman and cult:

On February 19, 2007 at 8:02 PM, you wrote; "the Roman cult..."

On February 24, 2007 at 10:37 AM you wrote; "... not believe that the Roman cult is the true church of God...."

On February 24, 2007 at 10:39 AM you wrote; "... the Roman cult's false teaching..."

>"...my description of their teaching is not inaccurate."

Let's examine the veracity of your claim:

You earlier stated; "The Roman cult teaches that works are necessary for salvation." That was proven inaccurate, as the Catholic Church clearly teaches salvation is by grace alone. (CCC 1996, http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/pt3sect1chpt3art2.htm)

So, your words that "...my description of their teaching is not inaccurate" are false.

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Sorry, dude, I really thought I had not called them cult in this thread. I had tried to watch it, but I can't help but think of all the billions of souls that Rome has deceived about the Gospel. Prayers to Mary (she is DEAD--no necromancy!!), Scapulars which promise eternal life to the wearer, a false miracle called the Eucharist that has no physical evidence (unlike ALL of Jesus' miracles), etc., are damning people day after day. I cannot but be angry about this.

My repuslive pizza analogy? I didn't come up with it. Hehehehe.

Ignorant, confused, makes no difference to me. I know what I read. I've been reading for 20 years. I know what meanings the English words are intended to convey. I know how to read.

By the way, I can't access your link for the Roman teaching on salvation. I do, however, have a link from another website, and this is the definition that I know about that Rome uses to teach grace: http://www.catholic.com/library/Grace_What_It_Is.asp

I am not ignorant or confused. I think you are.

Timothy said...

Greetings! Just popping by to followup...

>"Sorry, dude, I really thought I had not called them cult in this thread."

Apology accepted. You are forgiven.

>"...the billions of souls that Rome has deceived about the Gospel."

That's debateable. What you think is true, may not be what actually is true.

>" Prayers to Mary (she is DEAD--no necromancy!!"

What if Mary is NOT dead? Per Christ word's in Luke 20:38; "He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive."

According to Christ, "...all are alive." Does 'all' mean 'all'? If so, Mary is very much alive.

>"... false miracle called the Eucharist that has no physical evidence"

Just because you haven't seen the physical evidence, does not mean that the physical evidence does not exist. I haven't seen a platypus, but I believe physical evidence of platypi exists.

There is ample physical evidence of the miraculous transformation of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ. My personal favorite was at Lanciano, Italy:

PDF - Lanciano Eucharistic Miracle
http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/english_pdf/Lanciano1.pdf

There are 160 more documented Eucharistic miracles here:

http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/engl_mir.htm

Just because the miracles don't occur at your communion table doesn't mean that the miracles don't occur at other folk's communion tables.

>" I cannot but be angry about this."

Very understandable. If I thought Mary were dead and Catholics were engaging in necromancy, I'd have similar feelings.

Ditto for worshipping mere bread and wine. That would be major idol worship and clearly against God's commandments from the earliest of times.

However, if Mary is alive per Christ's words in Luke 20:38 and/or if the bread and wine are really Christ's body and blood per Christ's words in John 6:48-58, then thosen are totally different situations.

If the bread on a Catholic altar really and truely becomes the body of Christ, what would be the proper response by a Christian?

>"My repuslive pizza analogy? I didn't come up with it. Hehehehe."

Perhaps not, but you repeated it. No where in my Bible does it state that Christians should become so worldly as to enagage in 'potty evangelism'. I find little to 'Hehehehe' about.

>"By the way, I can't access your link for the Roman teaching on salvation."

Worked for me:

http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/pt3sect1chpt3art2.htm

>" this is the definition that I know about that Rome uses to teach grace: "

First, you then read:

"If sanctifying grace dwells in your soul when you die, then you have the equipment you need, and you can live in heaven (though you may need to be purified first in purgatory; cf. 1 Cor. 3:12–16). If it doesn’t dwell in your soul when you die—in other words, if your soul is spiritually dead by being in the state of mortal sin (Gal. 5:19-21)— you cannot live in heaven. You then have to face an eternity of spiritual death: the utter separation of your spirit from God (Eph. 2:1, 2:5, 4:18). "

We are saved by grace. Grace equal heaven. No grace equal no heaven.

Second, the Catholic.com page is not the definition Rome uses to teach about grace. This is the privately owned site of Karl Keating and not the Catholic Church. Karl and his staff do not have the charisma of infallibility.

That said, Karl has a very good site and it is a wonderful resource for Catholics and the world.

Regarding 'Rome', why do the doctrines of the Church of Rome also match the The Church of Antioch in Syria, The Church of Constantinople, and The Church of Alexandria in Egypt?

I would argue that doctrines that match the other ancient Christian churches are likely to be true and those that do not match are likely to be false.

Many of your doctrines do not match these other ancient churches. (example: Mary is dead - necromancy) Why is that?

>"I am not ignorant or confused. I think you are. "

Clearly. But, your belief that I am confused isn't necessarily the truth. It is your own personal fallible belief based largely on your own personal fallible interpretation of scripture. Is it not?

Hope you get to posting more often. You're one of the few folks posting original material.

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

All may be alive to God, but not all are alive to us. Jesus did not deny that John the Baptist was dead, even though he was alive to God. Death removes people from this side of life to the other. Mary has crossed that barrier. Any attempt to communicate with her becomes, therefore, an abomination before God.

As for miracles, when a blind man was made to see, even the Pharisees could not deny this miracle (John 9). I can easily deny the so-called miracle in the Eucharist--there is no change. The bread is still edible as bread, the wine is still drinkable as wine. You don't see people spitting it out in surprised reaction to the taste of human flesh or blood. It does not happen. There is no miracle.

Regarding the Roman church's definition of grace (this comes from the website that you gave me): "for it is by grace that we are saved and again it is by grace that our works can bear fruit for eternal life." Just as I knew to be so. I'm not wrong about Rome.

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Maybe it would help if I gave the Bible's definition of salvation:

"Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him which justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness." --Romans 4:4-5

Our works do nothing for our salvation. Our heart is asked to trust God for salvation upon humble request accompanied by an admission of guilt and justice of punishment (see Isaiah 66:2; Psalm 34:18; Luke 18:9-14).

We are guilty sinners who belong in Hell. Those of us who can admit that in despair, are given mercy by God because of His Son. Those who admit it with glee, will perish. And those who don't admit it at all will join them. And those who are arrogant enough to believe that they can suffer enough to redeem themselves are not trusting in the suffering of Jesus, and therefore are not obeying the Gospel, and they, too, will perish, no matter what organization they belong to.

xaipe said...

Joshua,
Thank you for inviting me to enter a bit into your conversation with Timothy.
My other commitments do not allow me the luxury of responding point by point (or even of continuing the conversation beyong this post), but I did think it important to bring out something that Timothy seems not to have mentioned.
It concerns the Lutheran doctrine of justification.
In the year 2000 (or maybe it was 1999, I am going on memory), representatives of the Lutheran Church and of the Catholic Church, after many decades of intense discussion, recognized publicly and formally that on the matter of our salvation in Jesus Christ, Catholics and Lutherans hold the same core doctrine. There are still differences in understanding how that doctrine applies in certain cases, and there are (of course) many differences in how individual members of different Churches perceive these matters, but on the whole, Catholic and Lutheran teaching coincide.
Since for centuries, we have been used to polemic guiding discussions about faith and salvation, it will probably take a very long time for Catholic Christians and Protestant Christians in the pews to recognize that in essence, we do not disagree on this pivotal issue.

There is an urgent need to proclaim Jesus Christ and him Crucified to the nations, especially to those billions of human beings for whom he died who do not even know his name. I understand your concern for the salvation of persons you consider lost because of what seems to be a perverted Gospel. But St. Paul did say "Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." How, though, can we reach those who do not know him at all? Who never call on his name? Who do not believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God?

Let us join together in earnest prayer in the Holy Spirit that God will anoint many new evangelists for this age, filling them with power and magnifying his holy name through their witness to the nations.

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

"I understand your concern for the salvation of persons you consider lost because of what seems to be a perverted Gospel. But St. Paul did say, 'Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'"

But, ma'am, Paul also condemned those who preached a perverted Gospel--in the strongest terms possible (Galatians 1:6-9), and Jesus said that not everyone who calls Him Lord is actually His servant (Matthew 7:13-23).

Please, recognize the differences between the Gospels we preach. Make sure that the one you believe is right--don't just take my word for it, don't take the word of your clergy! This is way to important to let someone deceive you about! Please, read your Bibles people!

Timothy said...

Greetings!

Still working my followup folder. Sorry for the delay, but my Internet service went down last week and it took two service technicians and several trips to the local Comcast facility to get everything resolved. Turned out to be a litle box on a pole in an alley.

I'm glad to see that my last answer made it through. I thought Blogger or the Internet had eaten it. So, on to your reply...

>"Any attempt to communicate with her becomes, therefore, an abomination before God."

Again, I'm trusting Christ's words in my Bible that "all are alive", and that Mary is therefore alive, over your personal interpretation of scripture.

You've clearly accepted Christ as your savior, but have not accepted Mary as your mother (John 19:25-27). It's your choice as to whether or not you wish to honor your father and mother. (Exodus 20:12)

>"As for miracles, when a blind man was made to see, even the Pharisees could not deny this miracle (John 9)."

Amen. An excellent choice. Did you note in John 9:6 that Jesus, Almighty God Himself, rather than just curing the eyesight by a single word or gesture, made use of spit and mud? Why? God doesn't need physical items to effect miracles.

I'm sure the spit and mud maintained their physical qualities and appeared and tasted as spit and mud, yet they had the effect of curing eyesight.

"I can easily deny the so-called miracle in the Eucharist--there is no change. The bread is still edible as bread, the wine is still drinkable as wine."

Have you so little faith that you limit God? Do you think that your God is so powerless that he could not turn bread and wine into His flesh and blood and still have it retain its physical aspects of looking and tasting the same? The God, who created heaven and earth, can't do this? Is this the God and Christian faith you proclaim on trains and streets?

You might review Genesis 1 and Isaiah 55:11. Note that when God speaks, miraculous things happen. God's word does not return void. When Jesus (God) spoke the words "This is my body" (Mark 14:22, Matthew 26:26), what happened per Isaiah 55:11 and Genesis 1?

>"You don't see people spitting it out in surprised reaction to the taste of human flesh or blood. It does not happen."

While spitting it out does not happen, bread which has actually turned into flesh and blood is consumed. Most recently in Italy in 2000 (article and photos):

http://www.madredelleucaristia.it/eng/mirmass.htm

>"There is no miracle."

That's your belief based on your lack of faith in your God. You might review John 20:24-29.

I have no doubts that there is no miracle at the communion table in your church. I agree 100% that the bread at your communion is indeed a symbol of Christ's body. That does not make true that everyone's else's communion is only a symbol or that a miracle does not occur in another Christian church.

>"Regarding the Roman church's definition of grace (this comes from the website that you gave me): "for it is by grace that we are saved and again it is by grace that our works can bear fruit for eternal life." Just as I knew to be so. I'm not wrong about Rome."

I noted that you highlighted the second phrase and not the first.Allow me:

for it is by grace that we are saved and again it is by grace that our works can bear fruit for eternal life.

If you read carefully, it says we are saved by grace. It does not say nor imply we are saved by works. It does say that "by grace" that has saved us we are able to perform works that can bear fruit, which is 100% in alignment with Paul's teaching in the Bible. The "eternal life" bit refers to the final judgement in Revelation which clearly states that the final judgement is based on our works.

If you wish to persist in your own interpretation of Catholic doctrine and be your own Pope, that's between you and God. Good luck with that.

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

My own what? My Lord is Jesus. My Father is God. What do I need a pope for?

"I noted that you highlighted the second phrase and not the first.Allow me:

for it is by grace that we are saved and again it is by grace that our works can bear fruit for eternal life."

The second phrase belies the first. Our works can only give evidence of whether or not we have been saved, and only to those on earth. Jesus said, "By their fruits, ye shall know them..." for "man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart." God doesn't need our works to evaluate our salvation.

"'[In the Eucharist]There is no miracle [as the Roman church claims that there is].'

That's your belief based on your lack of faith in your God. You might review John 20:24-29."

*looks up the passage*

Here it is in five translations. That has nothing to do with the Eucharist. The Bible does not say that there is some miracle taking place in the Eucharist. Rome does.

Futhermore, this is one more illustration of the fact that the Eucharist is a fraud. Thomas doubted that Jesus rose from the dead until he saw Him and put his hands in the scars. None of the people in your article there did. Thomas was convinced despite his doubts. Not nearly the same situation.

"You've clearly accepted Christ as your savior, but have not accepted Mary as your mother (John 19:25-27). It's your choice as to whether or not you wish to honor your father and mother. (Exodus 20:12)"

Wow. I've seen Scripture twisted, but never like this before. God has no mother. Mary is not part of the Holy Trinity. I do her no dishonor by not praying to someone who was not worshipped in the least by Jesus or the Apostles. Paul did not wax eloquent about Mary--he talked about Jesus. John said that if you have the Son, you have the Father--not a word about Mary in any of his epistles!

Rome's undue emphasis on Mary stands in stark contrast to the multitudes of verses about Christ, and the few verses actually mentioning even the name Mary, let alone talking about the woman who bore his infant body in her womb. Good grief.

Timothy said...

Greetings! Working my followups...

>"What do I need a pope for?"

Didn't say you needed a Pope. I said you were being your own Pope. You seem to think that you know and understand Catholic doctrine better than any Catholic. You're being your own Pope and interpreting Catholic doctrine as Joshua sees fit, not as the Catholic Church actually teaches it.

>"You might review John 20:24-29."
*looks up the passage*
Here it is in five translations. That has nothing to do with the Eucharist."

Well, of course not. Never stated that it did. Its a reference to the well known NT passage on lack of faith. I was comparing your faith to that of Thomas the Apostle. You seem to lack faith to believe that nothing is imposssible with God. Sure you know the words and proclaim it as an evangelist, but you don't actually believe that God is even capable of the miracle of the Eucharist. You believe that Matthew 26:26 is a metaphor,a symbol, or anything but a miracle of God.

You claim to believe that God created the heavens and the earth, but you don't claim to believe that God (Jesus) is even capable of converting bread and wine into His flesh and blood.

You don't believe because you don't want to believe, not because you're incapable. You must deny the Eucharist at all cost, because to not deny the Eucharist would prove the Catholic Church correct.
Then the dominos would fall. You're stuck.

>"God has no mother. Mary is not part of the Holy Trinity."

First, no claim has ever been made that Mary is part of the Trinity. I have no idea why you would toss that out there.

Second, your statement that God has no mother is partly true. God has no mother in the sense that God was not first born and then created all things. That part is true.

However, Jesus is God and was also fully human with a human mother. His two natures are inseperable. The scriptures often refer to Mary as Jesus mother. So in that sense, yes, God (Jesus) has a mother and, as the most devout and perfect Jewish boy ever to live, honored His mother Mary in accordance with the commandments of His father.

Again, in John 19:25-27, we find Christ telling John that Mary is his mother and Mary that John is her son. On the immediate level, the passage is entrusting John to care for Mary. However, in this same passage, Jesus (God) is speaking directly to us in the modern day and telling us that Mary is our mother and that we, Christ's Church, are Mary's children. We have that instruction not from Paul, Peter or another mere human, but from the mouth of God Himself in the persona of Christ. We further know from Isaiah 55:11 that the Word of God does not go forth and return void. So what happened when Christ spoke the Words; "Son, this is your mother. Mother, this is your son"? Did the Word of God return void? Is the inerrant Bible in error?

Of course, you have the same dilemma with Mary that you do with the Eucharist. You must continue to deny Mary is your mother, because to admit that truth would be "Catholic". You're stuck.

Since you're a public evangelist, I'll let you in a little secret that I've been exploiting. Because the Catholic faith is found 100% in scripture, as long as you stick with "scripture alone" and the right of the individual to read and interpret the Bible for themselves (priesthood of all), I can never "lose." The worst I can ever do is a draw. You, on the other hand, get the short end of the stick. You can never "win." The best you can ever do is a draw.

God bless...

- Timothy

JOSHUA S BLACK said...

Actually, Timothy, I understand Catholic doctrine better than you do. I also know that it is permissible for a Catholic to lie to someone who is not entitled to the truth. So, I'm not backed into a corner on any of this. You still have yet to prove anything that you have proposed from Scripture. Your passage in John was completely unrelated to the subject. Here's why:

Faith is not measured in what one believes that God can do--but whether a person believes what God has actually promised. Did God say that the Eucharist was a miracle? No. The Scriptures don't support such a concept--a miracle that no one can see except those who want to believe it. Miracles don't ask you to believe them. They just happen. Reality does not care if you want to believe it.

Mary's status as Jesus' earthly caretaker doesn't give her any special status over our lives. Even John, the Apostle who was commissioned to care for Mary, does not mention her in any of his epistles. I wonder why...Actually I don't wonder--it's clear: Mary has no special place in the church. Otherwise, God would have made sure that she had more mention--particularly in the Book of Acts.

As for you winning or losing or drawing--the battle is between you and God, not between you and me. Surrendering to a church is not the same as surrendering to God. God commands Holiness--He does not sweep child molestation under a rug (or over to the next parish), He exposes it.

I'm not intimidated in the least by your fallacious arguments. Anyone who actually reads that passages that you cite could never come to the conclusions that you propose. There is a such thing as a correct understanding of what God meant by what He commanded people to write. And it is available to any of His children. (Read James 1:5 and John 16:13.) All you need to do is to be born again (John 1:12-14; 3:3).