Hard Nuts for Catholic Apologists
August 19, 2015 (first published September 8, 2001) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, firstname.lastname@example.org)
I am amazed at the audacity of Roman Catholic apologists who claim that their religion is based on the Bible and who challenge others to prove to them that this is not so.
Even their own church admits that its teaching is not based solely upon the Bible. The authoritative proclamations of the Second Vatican Council leave no doubt about this:
“Thus it comes about that the Church does not draw her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Hence, both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honoured with equal feelings of devotion and reverence” (Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, Chap. 2, 9, p. 682).
Words could not be plainer.
Rome itself does not make the claim that its teachings are based upon the Bible alone. Yet there are many Catholic apologists who make this ridiculous claim. They are especially active on the Internet, and I hear from them on a regular basis since I have posted many articles against Roman Catholicism at my web site.
Following are some hard nuts for these Catholic apologists to chew on. My challenge is this: SHOW ME IN THE BIBLE, RIGHTLY INTERPRETED IN CONTEXT, WHERE THESE PROMINENT CATHOLIC TEACHINGS ARE FOUND.
Where in the Bible do we find Peter assuming and exercising the role of a Catholic pope?
Where does the Bible say the early churches treated Peter in a papal fashion?
Where does the Bible say that one man is the head of all churches?
Where does the Bible say God established a special priesthood for the churches that is separate from the priesthood of the believers?
Where does the Bible describe the office of such priests in the early churches?
Where does the Bible say that New Testament priests are ordained after the order of Melchizedek?
Where in the Bible do we find a requirement that pastors be celibate?
Where does the Bible say the apostles passed on their authority through a succession?
Where does the Bible give standards for apostolic succession? There are standards for pastors and deacons, but where are the standards for an ongoing apostleship?
Where does the Bible describe nuns in the early churches?
Where in the Bible do we find anyone praying to Mary or to any other person other than God?
Where does the Bible call Mary the Mother of God?
Where does the Bible say that Mary is the Queen of Heaven?
Where in the Bible do we find the teaching that Mary is sinless?
Where in the Bible do we find the baptism of an infant who is too young to believe in Christ?
Where does the Bible teach us that the church can identify dead people as saints and can then pray to them?
Where does the Bible teach that a dead person can intercede for the living?
Where does the Bible teach about purgatory?
Where does the Bible teach that churches should use the bones of dead men in any type of religious manner?
Where does the Bible teach that the churches used indulgences?
Where in the Bible do we find even one example of a Catholic mass being conducted or even described? If Christ established the mass and if it is central to the Christian faith as Rome claims, why is there not one example of it in the book of Acts and the New Testament epistles?
Where in the Bible do we find Christians taking the Lord’s supper by partaking of the bread alone without the wine or grape juice?
Where in the Bible does Paul or any of the early church leaders teach that there are seven sacraments?
Where in the Bible do we find the churches practicing the sacrament of confirmation?
Where in the Bible do we find the churches practicing any sort of extreme unction or last rites as a sacrament?
Where in the Bible do we find the prayer of the rosary?
Where in the Bible do we find that New Testament churches are to conduct elaborate rituals and ceremonies after the fashion of Rome?
Where in the Bible do we find that the headquarters for the church is to be in Rome?
The final hard nut is a little different, as it does not have to do with finding Roman Catholicism in the Bible. It is a question that our friend Brian Snider shared with us:
“During the last 1,700 years, the Roman Catholic Church has put to death hundreds of thousands she believed to be heretics -- Jews, dissident Catholics, Protestants, anabaptists, Hussites, Lollards, Waldenses, Albigenses, and many others in distant lands who refused to convert to the ‘one true church.’ Today, the Roman Catholic Church calls people who hold these very same opinions ‘separated brethren’ and teaches it is wrong to persecute on the basis of religious belief. Which church is right? The church which killed those who dispute her teachings, or the church which treats other Christians -- and even other religions -- as alternative pathways to heaven?”
If you are Roman Catholic, please understand that the reason we warn about Rome’s errors is because we love you and want to see you turn to the biblical faith in Jesus Christ. Our desire and prayer to God is that you might be saved. Forgiveness of sins and eternal life is a gift that was purchased by Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary, and He offers you that gift today. It is not something you have to try to earn or even perfect. As a sinner, you can never do enough to earn God’s favor. It is not something that any church can earn for you. It is not something that can be obtained through a church ritual, such as baptism or confirmation. Salvation is the free eternal mercy of God through Jesus Christ, and He stands ready and able to receive every sinner that will come to Him by repentance and faith. The Bible says you can KNOW you have eternal life right now, today.
Biblical salvation is a “know so” salvation,” because it is based 100% on what Jesus did on the cross in the sinner’s place.
“And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God” (1 John 5:112-13).
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8,9).
“And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (Romans 11:6).
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30).
If we can help you to better understand these important truths or if you need help in finding a good Bible-believing church, please do not hesitate to contact us.
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