A new Apologetics Series
Some time ago I received this list of “101 test questions” from someone I don’t recall. [DARN; I hate it when that happens]
Because we are in the Year of Faith it seems prudent to continue our sharing of Q &A on issues we might confront in our effort to Know; Live and SHARE our Catholic Faith. “One cannot share what one does not know” was a favorite teaching of my mentor; Farther John A. Hardon S.J.
Please keep in mind; that what I share is but one possible way to refute these particular issues. As long as what you choose to use conforms with what teaching I share; you will be in safe shape.
Base everything on this Infallible Bible Truth
: … “NEVER-EVER, CAN, MAY OR DOES ONE PASSAGE, VERSE OR TEACHING MAKE VOID; INVALIDATE OR OVERRIDE ANOTHER. Such a possibility would effectively make the ENTIRE BIBLE worthless to teach or learn God’s one Faith.”
To facilitate your efforts, I am once again including some very useful and User-friendly sites:
http://www.drbo.org/ The Douay Bible with Search and many verse explaintions
http://quod.lib.umich.edu/r/rsv/ The Catholic RSV Bible with search
http://www.biblestudytools.com/parallel-bible/ Permits comparing verses from 2 different bibles of your choice at a time
http://haydock1859.tripod.com/ Haydock’s Catholic Bible Commentary
So now we beging with Questions # 1
“Are YOU saved or Lost?” … Q1: Is the question we’ll often be asked
“SEE I Cor. 1:13. Rom 8:1”
1st. Cor. 1:13: “Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?” [Means only One God; One Faith and One Church] Rom. 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” [Means in Full obedience to ALL that Christ Teaches, mandates and commands]. The question is very often posed by those who accept in error: OSAS, and or Salvation by Faith Alone.” Neither position is biblically supportable in true understanding of the bible.
In replying to any scriptural debate with non-Catholics we MUST understand that their
meaning to our common terms, very often differ from ours, from what the CC Teachings is, and they therefore are correct. BUT knowing this without being able to prove it, is not going to win many discussions. In every case where the bible is translated with a view not held by the RCC; for example, “OSAS” which is NOT biblical as salvation is always a process with multiple steps required. That is what Christ taught and what we hold as the singular truth, and what we must be able to know and to prove.
Response: 1. WHY is this a true statement?
Here are four reasons:
1. The keys to the gate [singular] to heaven are given to and remain with the RCC and no one else. [Mt. 16:19, Acts 20:28, Rom.13:2, John 20:19-22] 2. Because of this ONLY the RCC is warranted by Christ Himself to be enables to translate the bible with the FULLNESS of the singular truth, one truth ONLY per issue, [Jn.14:6, Rev. 3:7, Jn. 14:16-17, Jn.17:15-19. Luke.22:29 to 30: Jer.3:15]3. The bible gives many warnings about the HIGH risk of self interpretations, [2nd. Peter 1: 16-21, Matt.13:9-12 , 2nd. Tim. 3: 16, Eph.3: 9 to 12, 2 Peter 3: 14 –17 ..ALL of these understand that there is always ONLY One God; One set of Faith believes and Only One Church” taught in the bible. 4. That the Bible is a Catholic Book, therefore only Catholics are enabled by God to be able to teach it fully and correctly; AND are required to do inline with the Teachings of the Magisterium. The RCC birthed the bible and it would be many HUNDREDS of years before a nycompeting Christian Faith came into existence.
2. Always first agree on a minimum foundations for such discussions: Rule 1 [THE INFALLIBLE RULE: …… “
no one part of the bible can contradict, make void or override another part of the bible, and still be THE true and a correct understanding. ” Rule 2. Seldom does a single passage tell the entire teaching.
3. Do not permit them to set the foundation for the discussion. It will always be either wrong , misunderstood, or incorrectly applied.
4 . The correct Catholic response to the question #1 is “Yes I am saved AND I am in the process of being saved.” …
BY virtue of the essential as well as mandatory four Sacraments of initiation into the RCC; which are ALL founded by Jesus: Baptism: Confession-Reconciliation, Eucharist , and Confirmation.
Baptism is required in order to become a child of Christ and a “signed” member of the community
. [John 3:5] *** ALL Christian denominations baptisms with Water in the Holy Spirit; Father; Son and Holy Spirit are VALID.
Confession: and forgiveness of sins is an ongoing requirement as Mortal sin; unconfessed and therefore factually unforgiven as Christ commands is a ticket to hell. [THIS IS the only method mandated and approved by Christ.
Eucharist:is the single greatest source of grace available to humanity and a Catholic Church exclusive, as is Confession. While not an “absolute necessity” it is by GRACE that salvation becomes possible. “Because this IS Really Jesus Himself in His Glorified Body: Blood: Soul and Divinity” no greater source of Grace is possible.
John 6: 47-56
And Confirmation: because of the indwelling of the HS is made possible.
These are NOT the ONLY necessary things but the primary, essentials. Knowledge of who Christ actually is; WHAT CHRIST HIMSELF teaches; mans undernourished -intellectually version of Christianity with … “I know more and or, I know better” teachings are NOT going to get one to heaven when the TRUTH of Christ is available to them.
Knowledge of the commandments and what they command in entirety is essential
Obedience to those placed in charge by Christ Himself:
Mt. 28:19-20, John 20:19-22, Acts 20:28, and Rom. 13:2
And the law of Charity and love:
John. 1:14. “Good Works” James 2: 17-20
The idea that anyone can devise there own way and not conform to what Christ Commands is simply foolish.
Each week we’ll address 5 of the 101 questions posed:
Q2. If saved, IS the love of God in YOUR HEART? See Rom. 5:5.
“And hope confoundeth not: because the charity of God is poured forth in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost, who is given to us”
Response: We don’t disagree with this; however Faith: Hope: and Charity; similar to the Trinity itself are a single “unit.” Each, while independent, is in some manner, yet a important part of the others. The question we ought to be asking here is: “just how is it you receive the Holy Spirit?” And what is the evidence of this? Catholics receive the Holy Spirit in and through the sacraments.
Q3 If Saved, ARE you Born of God? I. John 5:1“
Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ, is born of God. And every one that loveth him who begot, loveth him also who is born of him.”
Response: From Haydock’s CC:” Verse 1. That Jesus is the Christ, the promised Messias, the Redeemer of the world, is born of God, is made his adoptive son by his grace in baptism. — Is born of God; that is, is justified, and become a child of God by baptism; which is also to be understood, provided the belief of this fundamental article of the Christian faith be accompanied with all the other conditions, which, by the word of God and his appointment, are also required for justification; such as a general belief of all that God has revealed and promised; hope, love, repentance, and a sincere disposition to keep God’s holy law and commandments”
This second highlighted part is where many Protestants fail.
They assume that “Faith Alone” is all that is required. A short list of some of the other essentials include Grace :
Eph.2: 8 “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God” — Baptism: John 3:5 “Jesus answered: Amen, amen I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God, And Matthew 19:17 which too is not often understood fully: “But if thou wilt enter into life, keep the [ALL of them] commandments“.
Q4. If Saved, Is Christ in You? Col. 1:27; 2 Cor. 13:5.
Col.1:27 “To whom God would make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ, in you the hope of glory.”
2 Cor. 13:5 “Try your own selves if you be in the faith; prove ye yourselves. Know you not your own selves, that Christ Jesus is in you, unless perhaps you be reprobates?”
Response: Once again we must ask: “HOW” and even “Why” would “Jesus” [not the HS referenced there? Perhaps this is asking are you living the Life of a Christian?
Here is Haydock’s explanation: “Verse 5. Try your ownselves if you be in the faith. He does not mean if they have a right Christian faith or belief, but either whether they had a saving Christian faith working in them by charity, or as St. Chrysostom says, a faith that shewed itself by the gift of miracles, at that time commonly given to the first Christians. — Unless perhaps you are disapproved, rejected, and justly deprived of this gift, which was a proof that they were Christians, and had received the Spirit of Christ. I judged it better to translate here disapproved, that reprobates, which in other places is often taken as opposed to the predestinate and the elect, whereas there it signifies those who were rejected, and deprived of the gifts of the spirit, particularly of that of miracles, and of those spiritual gifts granted to the first Christians, and which were a proof that they had received the grace: and the 7th verse, not that we may appear approved, but that….we may be as reprobates. That is, we wish that we may have no occasion to shew the power and the gifts of the spirit, and that of miracles, but as if we were rejected, disapproved, reproved, and deprived of such proofs.” END QUOTE
Now we see more clearly, the risk of culling just one or two verses, out of context passages and what errors it can lead too. This reality of Jesus being is us certainly COULD apply to Catholics through the Most Holy Eucharist. I fail to see how it can / does apply to Protestants?
Q5 . If you are Born of God, [Baptized?] ARE you a Child of God? John 1:12; Rom. 8:16.
John 1:12 “But as many as received him, he gave them power to be made the sons of God, to them that believe in his name”
Once again we have a different version of “by Faith Alone.” A very believable and powerful message when taken out of context. They trend to the first teaching but at times ignore that it is clearly a “conditional offer.” Then even if they accept that its “conditional,” they claim an unwarranted right to define for themselves what the conditions are. Not permitting God to “be in charge”; and therefore they commonly miss the actual teaching God requires. This is a great example of US needing to know what is true; and how to prove it.
Rom. 8:16 “For the Spirit himself giveth testimony to our spirit, that we are the sons of God.” Keep in mind the question being asked: cf. “DO YOU have the Spirit of God living in you?” … I’d bet nearly 100%claim that they do?
Response: But even if they do, how do they know for sure? My guess is that the answer has something to do with “Speaking in Tongues” which they commonly hold as the “end-all” of all Spiritual Gifts. So are they saying that “if one does not have the Gift of tongues”; the HS is NOT with them? Yes, I think that is often their point; and it’s wrong! That is NOT what Paul actually teaches:
1Cor.12 Verses 26 to 31”If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, then healers, helpers, administrators, speakers in various [LAST Listed] kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? [NO is implied] Do all interpret? But earnestly desire the higher gifts. And I will show you a still more excellent way.” AND 1st.Cor. 14: Verses 5, 13 “Now I want you all to speak in tongues, but even more to prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than he who speaks in tongues, unless some one interprets, so that the church may be edified. Therefore, he who speaks in a tongue should pray for the power to interpret.”
Speaking in tongues is a good thing; made far better when they or someone else can interpret it “for the benefit of the church.” I know only a few catholics who are so Blessed. This stems from the fact that it is not a Gift we ask for from the HS, enough.
We certainly do NOT wish to claim that The Holy Spirit is NOT In some manner available to our Protestant brethren
. He may well be with them is some manner? BUT not in the fullness that He is within the Catholic Church and our Sacraments, and especially in it’s Informed and fully practicing members. READ:
John 14:165-17 and fulfilled in John 20:22. Christ made this promise to ONLY His Catholic Church. But God in Divine Justice can be with those who out if involuntary ignorance [NOT of there own choice or doing]; do worship God as best and as fully as they are able to do so.
We’ll end this First Lesson in our new Series here.
Continued Blessing. READ the bible and pray often!