Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Answering Ashley

Ashley posted some comments in the article on Sexuality that I thought should have a separate posting. I handled some of them in that section and here are the rest of them.

Is there a place for church traditions? Yes, but they must be weighed against the teaching of the Bible. We know that "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Romans 2:23. Peter was rebuked by Paul for his sin. The teachings of men are dangerous if left unchecked against God's book. Purgatory is a perfect example of the church adding to and contradicting God's Word. The New Catholic Encyclopedia states that purgatory cannot be found in the Bible. Yet, the teaching essentially says that Christ has not finished the work of salvation on the cross. We must personally suffer. However, while he is hanging on that cruel cross, where he received God's wrath for all of humanities sin, he professes that it is finished. It's either finished, or we need to go to purgatory. It can't be both. I put my faith in the words of my Lord and Savior, not it the teaching of fallen men.

Intereting tidbit, some of Jesus last words were "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? Which is being interpreted My God, My God, why has thou forsaken me?" Mark 15:34b Jesus is quoting scripture, Psalm 22, which if you read it, will give you goosebumps. The Bible is unlike any other book in the way prophesy is fulfilled. It is God's Word to us.

Just because the catholic church teaches something, doesn't mean it is wrong (I agree with you on perverted forms of sexual expression in marriage. The Bible speaks very clearly of what the union is to be - procreative.) I do believe that we should be like the Bereans who were called noble because they searched the scriptures daily to see if what Paul was teaching was so (Acts 17:11).

Also, smoking is not a fundamental of Christianity, but the Bible teaches that our bodies are the temple of God (1 Cor 3:16). Smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, an unhealty lifestyle, etc. are all hurting the temple of God. No book (the bible, catechism, quaran, watchtower magazine) can cover every single situation that you're faced with - that's where the Holy Spirit convicts us.

Elena, as well as other bloggers, have been very gracious in taking the time to answer my questions - I know how hard that is with all the blessed responsibilities of keeping the :) I am thankful for the dialogue and prayerfully submit this post in hopes that it stands for the teachings of Christ Jesus, my Lord.

Let me close with this... God's gift of salvation is a free one but it does require trusting in Christ, and Christ alone.

In Christ,
We have handled the Tradition topic here and more generally here.
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Kelly said...

Sola scriptura Christians do not believe that everything has to be specifically mentioned in the Bible. Because one sola scriptura Christian says it, does not make it the case for most.

The problem is, that with non-Catholic Christians, there is no central authority. Therefore, you cannot definitively say what exactly Sola Scriptura means. The definition given by a Lutheran is different from one given by a fundamentalist.

Also, you say here that a belief does not specifically need to be mentioned in the Bible, but then condemn purgatory because it is not mentioned in the Bible. Purgatory, like the Incarnation or the Trinity has a Biblical basis, even though the specific term is not mentioned in the Bible.

Yet, the teaching essentially says that Christ has not finished the work of salvation on the cross.

I don't think you are familiar with the actual Catholic teaching of purgatory, if you feel this is what it involves. What is your basis for this statement? Did you read it in the Catholic Catechism, or on a Catholic website somewhere?

I wrote about two posts about purgatory:


Just because the catholic church teaches something, doesn't mean it is wrong . . . I do believe that we should be like the Bereans who were called noble because they searched the scriptures daily to see if what Paul was teaching was so (Acts 17:11).

I'm glad you don't think that something is wrong automatically because it is Catholic, especially since that would rule out so many fundamental beliefs--the Incarnation, the Trinity, the resurrection of the dead, that Jesus is the one Mediator, etc.

The Catholic Church also teaches that everyone should be studying Scripture.


For this reason, the Church has always venerated the Scriptures as she venerates Lord's Body. She never ceases to present to the faithful the bread of life, taken from the one table of God's Word and Christ's Body.

In Sacred Scripture, the Church constantly finds her nourishment and her strength, for she welcomes it not as a human word, "but as what it really is, the word of God". "In the sacred books, the Father who is in heaven comes lovingly to meet his children, and talks with them."


God is the author of Sacred Scripture. "The divinely revealed realities, which are contained and presented in the text of Sacred Scripture, have been written down under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit."

"For Holy Mother Church, relying on the faith of the apostolic age, accepts as sacred and canonical the books of the Old and the New Testaments, whole and entire, with all their parts, on the grounds that, written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they have God as their author, and have been handed on as such to the Church herself."

God inspired the human authors of the sacred books. "To compose the sacred books, God chose certain men who, all the while he employed them in this task, made full use of their own faculties and powers so that, though he acted in them and by them, it was as true authors that they consigned to writing whatever he wanted written, and no more."

The inspired books teach the truth. "Since therefore all that the inspired authors or sacred writers affirm should be regarded as affirmed by the Holy Spirit, we must acknowledge that the books of Scripture firmly, faithfully, and without error teach that truth which God, for the sake of our salvation, wished to see confided to the Sacred Scriptures."

and #131-133

"And such is the force and power of the Word of God that it can serve the Church as her support and vigor, and the children of the Church as strength for their faith, food for the soul, and a pure and lasting fount of spiritual life." Hence "access to Sacred Scripture ought to be open wide to the Christian faithful."

"Therefore, the study of the sacred page should be the very soul of sacred theology. The ministry of the Word, too - pastoral preaching, catechetics and all forms of Christian instruction, among which the liturgical homily should hold pride of place - is healthily nourished and thrives in holiness through the Word of Scripture."

The Church "forcefully and specifically exhorts all the Christian faithful. . . to learn the surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ, by frequent reading of the divine Scriptures. Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ.

Maggii said...

I'm not sure if this is the right post to address this but I wanted to follow Elena's directive to keep the Sexuality post on topic..

in regards to Ashleys comment:
"I asked earlier if a Christian could be saved apart from the catholic church. According to your catechism, the answer is in most cases it's a resounding "No". "

I felt that Elena's response showed that the Catechism does feel that non- Catholic Christians have salvation.
the Church recognizes that other Christians have the truth, it just does not believe they have the full truth. It also allows for the thought that not all Christians have been given the full truth, and do not hold that against them. It is only if one HAS the full truth and chooses against it, that salvation would be completely lost. I think the Church also realizes and acknowledges that although other Christians are not fully "Catholic"....most do stem from Catholicism and have membership in the "catholic" church, and therefore may have salvation as they are not truly 'outside' the Catholic Church.

I don't know ..I am not very good I'm not sure if I'm representing the Catechism properly...this is mainly my take on things, so please don't hold that against us.