- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: Introduction
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: #1 That the Catholic Church is the One True Church
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: #2 The Infallibility of the Catholic Church
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church #3 Tradition More Authoritative than Scripture
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: #4 Is the Pope the Head of the Church?
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: #5 Is the Roman Catholic Church Necessary for Salvation?
- A Critique of Some of the False Teachings of the Catholic Church: #6 Salvation is by Faith plus Works
Before getting into the actual critique it is necessary that I make a statement about my position in this argument. Many readers will automatically assume that I have an axe to grind with the Catholic Church or Catholics in general, that is not the case at all.
I was not brought up in a Christian home any more than most people. My parents did not go to Church, read the Bible, or consciously teach us children Biblical truths. They accepted Christian teachings and the Ten Commandments as generally true because those truths were paramount in our culture; the general consensus of America at that time was Christian, so we were Christian in that respect. Christianity was divided primarily into Catholic and Protestant and in grade school we were sent once a week to the local United Methodist Church for Bible training, so as a consequence we were labeled Protestant.
At the age of 26, after five years of marriage, my wife and I gave our lives to Christ. At that point I was still not protesting anything, but I was studying this mysterious book that had evaded my interest for so many years, but had now invaded my heart. What I read there gave me problems almost from the very beginning. The pastor of the first Church we attended, a Full Gospel Church, after several meetings in his office forthrightly said that I was reading too much and that I should just relax in the Spirit and follow the lead of the others, i.e. jumping, yelling, speaking in tongues, prophesying, laying hands on the sick, etc. I am not a highly emotional person so the Full Gospel venue lost its appeal. Over the next several years, and several Churches, the studying of this book continued to be a problem, but eventually the questions lessened and we began to settle into the routine of just attending Church.
With my study I did recognize the severe difference between the Protestant and Catholic Church, and it was disturbing that they both professed to be the Church described as the “body of Christ” as revealed in the Bible. What I found out over the next years was that both of these groups had established a beachhead to protect their own real-estate and their own belief systems. Once again trouble arrived at my doorstep. I discovered that I was beginning to disagree with much of what I had been taught by the Protestants. The early reformers were all Catholics who had left the Catholic Church because they had uncovered truth that was being deliberately covered up. These Catholic expatriates were the early Protestants. Now, if I find myself in disagreement with both these groups because of clear Bible truths that were being held back, and an organizational system being developed, instead of the simple obedience called for by Jesus, can I rightly call myself a Protestant? For that reason I do not call myself a Protestant; I am just a follower of Jesus, a Christian, and nothing more.
Before there ever was a Protestant or a Catholic there existed simply Christians. Once the Catholic Church was promoted, by gifted men who desired power, and entrenched their beliefs into the minds of their followers, there still existed small cells, of those who understood the mind and heart of Jesus, who chose to risk life and limb rather than to blindly follow the wishes of mere men who used the Bible to build earthly organizations; this is the group we read about in Scriptures as “the elect of God,” or Christ’s “little flock.” These small cells went underground and were called by different names throughout history, but their common link is the fact that they desired to follow the dictates of the Bible over the mandates of men; and this commonality was also the standard that brought to their doorstep the horrendous persecutions they had to endure, both at the hands of the Catholics and the Protestants.
Along with the official Reformation there also existed the Radical Reformation.
The Radical Reformation was the response to what was believed to be the corruption in both the Roman Catholic Church and the expanding Magisterial Protestant movement led by Martin Luther and many others. Beginning in Germany and Switzerland in the 16th century, the Radical Reformation birthed many radical Protestant groups throughout Europe. The term covers both radical reformers like Thomas Müntzer, Andreas Karlstadt, groups like the Zwickau prophets and Anabaptist groups like the Hutterites and Mennonites.
In parts of Germany, Switzerland and Austria, a majority sympathized with the Radical Reformation despite intense persecution.
Much of the remnant of the radical reformers that still exist today have been absorbed into the mindset of a “visible Church” as opposed to the “Church invisible,” that exist as the spiritual body of Christ.
While the magisterial reformers wanted to substitute their own learned elite for the learned elite of the Catholic Church, the radical Protestant groups rejected the authority of the institutional “church” organization, almost entirely, as being unbiblical. It was unavoidable that as the search for original Christianity was carried further, some would claim that the tension between the church and the Roman Empire in the first centuries of Christianitywas somehow normative, that the church is not to be allied with government sacralism, that a true church is always subject to be persecuted, and that the conversion of Constantine I was therefore the Great Apostasy that marked a deviation from pure Christianity.
Time is running out. Clear prophesies from the Bible indicate that we are in the last, of the last days. World events continue to point to the soon coming of Christ, and there is much work to do.
Although there is the indication that many are beginning to see that there is trouble in the organized Church there is as yet no great migration or evacuation from the leading Christian institutions.
Although very many within the Protestant Church see the Catholic Church as the Harlot who rides the Beast in chapters 17 and 18 of the book of Revelations, I am more inclined to see that Harlot as the amalgamation or unification of both the Catholic and Protestant Churches, and possibly all religions. After all, the Harlot is called the “mother of harlots” and the Protestant Church was birthed from the Catholic Church, was she not? If that is the case then the Bible instructs us to “Come out of her, my people,’ so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues.” Revelation 18:4.
The main purpose is to supply the evidence to support the false teachings listed below. But, the underlying purpose which will be established is the identification of the Harlot who rides the Beast, and to wake-up searching Protestants.
The Necessity of Truth
It is not my purpose to convince a person that truth exist. It is assumed that those to whom I am directing this message are believers in the existence of truth, as provided in the inspired word of God. Atheist will therefore find no support from my writings.
There have been many who have declared that they have had the truth delivered to them personally as an extra Biblical revelation, or as a group, and that except this truth be interpreted to the masses or explained by them it cannot be understood. It is not true! The truth was delivered to us in the form of a person. Jesus says of Himself, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” John 14:6. That truth is available to every living person through the revelation of the Spirit to the heart of man. John 7:17; Hebrews 1:1; 2 Timothy 3:16; John 8:32, et al.
When a person or group makes the declaration that the Bible cannot be understood apart from their secret fallaciousness or esoteric obscurities you can be assured you are being scammed.
Human weakness is such that to have access to someone or something which claims to have inside information, through mysticism, esoteric knowledge, new age spirit guide, or the like, gives a sense of personal power and entrance into the secrets and mysteries of life. It is this weakness that is exploited by all kinds of men seeking to harness this power and weakness. To harvest this ripened crop, of the need for inclusiveness and personal power, is the goal of every marketer, salesman, conman, Hollywood director, and religious organization built by men. The minds and hearts of men are the true trophies of those men seeking power, fame, and money. Every salesman (and not a few priest and pastors) know that the true value of their product means nothing; it is the perceived value that they are concerned with. It is the emotional commitment to their product that is important, not its true value.
We are All Lost
True truth in a world saturated with lies, subterfuge and stratagem, innuendos and insinuations, ploys and schemes, and fifty shades of gray, is as hard to find as a needle in a hay stack; maybe harder.
Is it any wonder that all men are declared to be blind and deaf and in need of a savior? We have all felt it at one time or another, lost in the deep dark woods of life, where evil lurks around every corner, vulnerable, alone, weak, and facedown against misfortune. All the positive thinking in the world cannot save us; we are hopeless. With these kinds of experiences and vast numbers of qualified leads any salesman or devil would be in the paradise of possibilities. People want to be saved; they are predisposed to deception; they only want the sensation of safety, or perceived safety. It is the feeling that many get by carrying a gun or having their house wired with cameras and alarms. Even the military gives the sense of security. The incident in Ferguson Missouri shows us the feelings and reactions when that security is jeopardized on one side or the other. One side is angry because they feel they have no safety with the police; the other side is angry because that safety is being discredited and weakened. All of these people are pawns in the great competition of who will make the sell. Then, enters the “Truth” with no bells, no whistles, no flowing gowns or reverend collars, no steeples or stained-glass windows, no bands or beautiful voices, no glossy covers or bill-boards, no far-out promises of big buildings and basketball courts, ten point sermons, or promises of riches. Truth says simply, trust Me. My way is not your way, but it is the only way. If it is still called “today” then the door is still open. Learn about Me, follow me, walk in My footsteps. Keep to the narrow path. Separate yourself from the noise of all the salesmen, and listen carefully, and you will hear my voice, and I will direct you out of this world. My sheep know My voice and they follow Me. Many things like this Jesus has spoken, but we are inclined to listen to the salesmen instead, with their tangible wares offering the safety of organizations, systems, governments, ballot-boxes, denominations, parties, machines, weapons, alarms, gases, and tasers. All the devises offered by the world, including the religious world, are but the wares and goods of men selling their perceived valuables.
This is why truth is so hard to find, it has been covered over by the refuse of men. But, truth exist for those few who will truly desire it, as they would desire to own the most precious treasure known to man, like the Pearl of Great Price.
This is why truth is so needed; and this is why I write my articles; and this is why the grand lies of the Roman Catholic Church need to be exposed.
I am going to be looking at the following sixteen points of doctrine laid out by the Catholic Church. I will take each in order. It will not be a comprehensive expose but rather a look behind the curtain of deception to show the vanity, pride, and filthiness of that Harlot who rides the Beast.
1. The Catholic church is the one true church
2. Infallibility of the Catholic Church
3. Only the Roman Catholic Church has authority to interpret Scripture
4. The Pope is the head of the church and has the authority of Christ
5. The Roman Catholic Church is necessary for salvation
6. Sacred Tradition is equal to scripture
7. Forgiveness of sins, salvation, is by faith plus works
8. Full benefit of Salvation is only through the Roman Catholic Church
9. Grace can be merited
10. The merit of Mary and the Saints can be applied to Catholics and others
11. Penance is necessary for salvation
15. Prayer to the saints
16. The Communion elements become the actual body and blood of Christ