Forum Post on The Bible and Salvation (2)

The Bible and Salvation

(forum post - ONE)


the bible is easy to understand in regards to salvation. it is a gift of God ... so that no one can boast.

A few simple easy-to-answer questions for you .....

1. Is repentence necessary?
2. Does baptism save us?
3. Will everyone who believes and calls on the name of Jesus be saved?
4. Do we need to eat and drink the Body and Blood of Jesus?
5. If we believe in Jesus, is there any sin that we can commit without repenting and be saved?
6. If we have faith, are works necessary?
7. Is there any sacrifice necessary to be a Christian?
8. Is baptism necessary?

Thanks!


Martin,

Interesting questions. To elaborate on question #3, many "bible" Christians have told me that all you need to do to be saved is to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior (John 3:16).

But in reading the 19th chapter of Matthew, we learn of a young man who approaches Jesus and asks Him straight out what he must do to be saved (Matt 19:16). A “bible” Christian who wants to know how to be saved should have to look no further than this. The young man has done us the great courtesy of asking God Himself the proverbial $64,000 question: How do I get saved? This is where Jesus is bound to say “all you have to do is believe in me and you will be saved.” But that’s not what He says. He tells the young man: “If you would enter life, keep the commandments” (Matt 19:17). And not just that, for the Lord also tells the young man, to be perfect, he must sell his possessions and “come follow me” (Matt 19:21).

And, when we read the 19th chapter of Acts, we see that Paul came upon disciples in Ephesus, new believers. Paul asked them if they had received the Holy Spirit when they believed (Acts 19:2). As a matter of fact, that’s what my “bible” Christian friends say happened when they got saved – they received the Holy Spirit. But, unlike my "bible" Christian friends, their response to Paul is that they had not even heard of the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:3). Paul promptly baptizes them in Christ’s name (Acts 19:5); however, it is not until Paul “laid his hands on them” that the Holy Spirit came upon them (Acts 19:6).

I don’t doubt the sincerity of my “bible” Christian friends, but I find it curious that these folks, who claim to follow the “bible alone”, find ways of being “saved” that can’t be found in Scripture.

God bless,

Rich


What do you mean? "Bible Christians" believe the Scriptures to teach that you have to profess with mouth and accept Christ in your heart as Lord and Savior and then you will be saved. And then the Holy Spirit would come in. How does that contradict Scripture?? If they did all that and then took up their cross everyday to follow Christ, how are they not saved?


I would like to answer your questions.
1.Repentence is a turning from our sins to God. If we dont repent we cant recieve the gift of salvation.
2.The baptism that saves us is the baptism of the holy spirit, you see, before we are saved, are dead in our transgressions and sins. All we have is a sinnful nature. We are spritually dead. The holy spirit is Gods spirit, when he comes into us he gives us life,to be born again, the birth of the spirit. Thats in John 3. He saves us by giving us his spirit and reunites us with himself. Water baptism is an outward symbolism of an inward change.
3.Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord in TRUTH will be saved, not everyone who calls on him.
4.Again Jesus is using symbolism, we dont literally eat and drink Jesus' body and blood. He is reffering to recieving his forgiveness, the blood, and living a new life, surrendered to him, his body.
5.The blodd of Jesus covers us from all sin. We cant repent of every sin every time we commit one. We are saved from sin, which is seperation from God. God is not anal retentive. He knows our hearts, and our state. It is him who does the work in us and through us to bring us to him. He just wants us to submit to know him and submit to him.
6.If we have a genuine faith, works are going to be a natural byproduct of that faith. The bible says the fruit of the spirit is love, and the greatest command is love. God will accomplish his will through us if our faith is real.
7.There is no sacrafice for sin necessary after you are saved if that is what you mean. But we all have sacrifices to make in life, that it between us and God.
I hope i answered your questions in an understandable manner. Please take the time to find out if what im saying is correct. If you have dissagreements, or you dont understand what i mean, please let me know and i will do my best.


Ryan, what Jesus was telling the rich young ruler was two things.
1.His love for his money was keeping him from God.
2.Jesus was answering his question with the intention of speaking against the mans true motives. The ruler was asking how he could save himself, Jesus said essentially, be perfect and you can save yourself. Obviously that is impossble, but Jesus knew his heart and answered him accordingly. Remember when Pontus Pilate asked Jesus "what is truth?" Jesus said nothing because he knew his heart and he knew he didnt want an answer, so he didnt give him one.
The bible teaches that salvation is a gift of God, not by works so that no one can boast. Read Galations. Thats the theme of the book.


Ryan,
You are in error when you say that bible believing christians have no biblical basis for the claim that we recieve the holy spirit upon believing. Ephesians 1:13, Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised holy spirit, who is a deposit guarenteeing our inheritence until the redemption of those who are Gods posession-to the praise of his glory.
What happened to the people in Acts was, they acknowledged who Jesus was, but they hadnt put their faith in him yet.
God bless you.


I would like to answer your questions.
1.Repentence is a turning from our sins to God. If we dont repent we cant recieve the gift of salvation.

I agree. So faith without action isn't enough.

2.The baptism that saves us is the baptism of the holy spirit, you see, before we are saved, are dead in our transgressions and sins. All we have is a sinnful nature. We are spritually dead. The holy spirit is Gods spirit, when he comes into us he gives us life,to be born again, the birth of the spirit. Thats in John 3. He saves us by giving us his spirit and reunites us with himself. Water baptism is an outward symbolism of an inward change.

Well ... you have it partially correct. JOhn 3 tells us we must be born anew of the water and the spirit. So the water isn't simply an outward symbol. If we look at John 1, we find John the Baptist saying in verses 32-34, "I saw the Spirit descend as a dove from heaven, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him; but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.' And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God." John the Baptist baptized only with water, as a preparation for the coming of the Messiah, but there was one who would baptize with the Holy Spirit-- Jesus. This is the same Jesus who went about baptizing people at the end of John 3.

Reading further in the New Testament, we see the clear understanding of the apostles and the early Church as regards baptism.

"Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Brethren, what shall we do?" And Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, every one whom the Lord our God calls to Him..." So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls." (Acts 2:37-39,41)

"...let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water." (Hebrews 10:22)

"...but when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of deeds done by us in righteousness, but in virtue of his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal in the Holy Spirit, which he poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in hope of eternal life." (Titus 3:4-7)

Again, these two passages have always been understood to refer to baptism, which has historically been referred to as the "washing of regeneration." We are able to approach God with clear consciences, new creatures in Christ, because of this washing of regeneration in baptism.

3.Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord in TRUTH will be saved, not everyone who calls on him.

To borrow a phrase from Pilate ... "What is truth?"

Sincerity? Those who have done the will of the Father? Those that truly believe? How is such truth measured? What if I'm a Mormon and call on the Lord in what I believe to be the truth? What about us Catholics? Or Anglicans? or Orthodox? Or Lutherans?

4.Again Jesus is using symbolism, we dont literally eat and drink Jesus' body and blood. He is reffering to recieving his forgiveness, the blood, and living a new life, surrendered to him, his body.

His followers were revolted at his talk of eating and drinking His flesh. They knew he wasn't talking symbolically. Most of His followers left Him. They wouldn't have been revolted by His Bread of Life discourse is He was simply speaking symbolically.

They responded, "How can this man give us His flesh to eat?"

in John 6 He was speaking literally. In John 6:41, the Jews "murmured" about Christ's teaching precisely because it was so literal. Christ certainly knew they were having difficulty imagining that He was speaking literally, but rather than explain His meaning as simply a metaphor, He emphasized His teaching, saying, "I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever, and the bread that I will give is My flesh for the life of the world" (John 6:51). Why would Christ reinforce the literal sense in the minds of His listeners if He meant His words figuratively? Now point out how the Lord dealt with other situations where His listeners misunderstood the meaning of His words. In each case, He cleared up the misunderstanding. For example, the disciples were confused about His statement, "I have meat to eat that you know not of" (John 4:32). They thought he was speaking about physical food real meat. But He quickly cleared up the misunderstanding with the clarification, "My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, that I may perfect his work" (Matt. 4:34; cf. 16:5-12). Back to John 6. Notice that the Jews argued among themselves about the meaning of Christ's words. He reiterated the literal meaning again: "Amen, Amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you do not have life within you" (verses 53-54). In verse 61 we see that no longer was it just the wider audience but "the disciples" themselves who were having difficulty with this radical statement.

Surely, if Christ were speaking purely symbolically, it's reasonable to expect that He would clear up the difficulty even if just among His disciples. But He doesn't. He stands firm and asks, "Does this shock you? What if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before?" (Verse 62-63). Did Christ "symbolically" ascend into heaven after the Resurrection? No. As we see in Acts 1:9-10, His ascension was literal. This is the one and only place in the New Testament where people abandon Christ over one of His teachings. Rather than try to correct any mistaken understanding of His words, the Lord asks His Apostles, "Do you also want to leave?" (verse 67). His Apostles knew He was speaking literally. St. Paul emphasizes the truth of the Real Presence: "Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord . . . .Whoever eats and drinks without recognizing the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself" (1 Cor. 11:27-29). If the Eucharist is merely a symbol of the Lord's body and blood, then St. Paul's words here make no sense. For how can one be "guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord" if it's merely a symbol? This Greek phrase for being "guilty of someone's body and blood" (enokos estai tou somatos kai tou haimatos tou kuriou) is a technical way of saying "guilty of murder." If the Eucharist is merely a symbol of Christ, not Christ Himself, this warning would be drastically, absurdly overblown.

5.The blodd of Jesus covers us from all sin. We cant repent of every sin every time we commit one. We are saved from sin, which is seperation from God. God is not anal retentive. He knows our hearts, and our state. It is him who does the work in us and through us to bring us to him. He just wants us to submit to know him and submit to him.

What would happen if we do not confess our sins. What would happen if we confessed with our mouth but wasn't truly repentant? Would God forgive us anyway? If you say yes, you contradicts the biblical passages that say unrepented sin will not be forgiven and nothing sinful or unclean can enter into heaven (cf. Hab. 1:13; Rev. 21:8- 9, 27).

Romans 11:22: "See, then, the kindness and severity of God: severity towards those who fell (ie. from salvation: 11:11-21), but God's kindness to you, provided you remain in His kindness, otherwise you too will be cut off."

Other clear contingency clauses pertaining to salvation are Matthew 10:22-32; Luke 12:41-46; 1 Corinthians 15:1-2; Colossians 1:22-23; Hebrews 3:6,14; and Revelation 2:10, 25-26, 3:1-5, 22:18-19.

2 Peter 2:20-22: "For if, flying from the pollutions of the world, through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they be again entangled in them and overcome: their latter state is become unto them worse than the former. For, that of the true proverb has happened to them: The dog is returned to his vomit: and, the sow that was washed, to her wallowing in the mire."

Scripture can't get much clearer than that in explaining that one can lose his salvation.

This post is getting a little long. I'll end it here. Thanks for your response. Let me know if you have any questions!


Nice work Martin.


you answered me on a very superficial level. im not trying to be insulting, but what is the purpose of eating Jesus' flesh and drinking his blood literally. the reason the followers left is because thats what they thought he meant. and i never brought up the subject of whether or not someone could lose their salvation. again you are missinterpereting the scripture. Jesus said he will lose none the father has given him, and the blood of Jesus covers us from all sin. although it might be possible to leave God. read Galations, we are saved by grace, not works.if we are saved, we will do works because he is in us, i said that in my other response, and you misquoted john 3. it says we must by born of water and the spirit, not born again of water and the spirit. we are born of water when we are first born. Jesus is reffering to our first birth(physical) and our second birth(spiritual)or, our need for one.(spiritual birth). please try to understand what God is trying to do in our lives. naturally we are in rebellion, we need his grace to bring us to him, and that is exactly what he is trying to do. and, i never said we shouldnt repent, you assumed that is what i meant. what i meant was, we cant save ourselves, only God can do that.
and when i said everyone who called on the Lord in truth would be saved. i thought you would know what i meant. calling on him in truth means to call on him according to his reality, according to his character, out of an earnest desire to be saved from our sin.
Jesus said i have come to seek and save the lost. we are lost on our own Martin. we cant do anything to save ourselves, only God can save. we need him and we need to know him. that is mans greatest need. please understand what im saying, without him we are very messed up, even if we are religious. without a relationship with him we are lost. and i mean a real relationship with him, based on who he is as revealed in the bible. i dont know if you have one or not, i wont decide that. the only reason i will debae doctrinal views is because it is imperitive that we put our trust inthe true and living God. i know my God and i know who he is. the bible confirms it. he is full of grace and truth. he knows i cant save myself, so he came here to do it for me. we can never be good enough to save ourselves, and to tell you the truth im kind of glad. that allows me to trust him, not myself. we all sin and it kills us so repentance is very necessary. but it is only to lead us to our savior.
i hope God shows himself to you and leads you into a close relationship with him.

God bless you
p.s. please dont be offended by my honesty, remember the bible says be completly humble and gentle, bearing with one another in love.


Schneiddog,

Thank you for taking the time to respond to my post.

I'd like to respond to some of your comments:

<<1.His love for his money was keeping him from God.>>

I only partially agree with this; the passage refers to the young man's "possessions", not money. It was his attachment to his worldly possessions that kept him from following Christ. I think, however, the message for us is that there are many things, not just money, and not just possessions, that can keep us from committing our lives to Christ--ambition, pride, fear, sloth, etc. The message for us then, is that we should be willing to give up anything and everything--all our "possessions' regardless of what form they take--and follow Christ.

<< Jesus was answering his question with the intention of speaking against the mans true motives. The ruler was asking how he could save himself … . Obviously that is impossble, but Jesus knew his heart and answered him accordingly.>>

I'm afraid that you are trying to read your own interpretation into this passage. You are saying that the young man has a base motive; that he was asking how he could save himself, and that Christ was answering him facetiously. To the contrary, however, the passage shows an earnest young man making an honest inquiry of Christ. In fact, the parallel passage in Mark shows Christ moved by the young man's sincerity. "And Jesus, looking upon him, loved him, and said to him, "One thing is lacking to thee; go, sell whatever thou hast, and give to the poor, … and come, follow me (Mark 10:21).

So, again, I think that the real meaning of this passage is that God is calling all of us to holiness, aksing us to "sell everything" and follow Him. It is up to each of us to take whatever steps are necesssary to respond to God's call. Commenting on this passage from Mark, Pope John Paul II urges us to "Heed the call of Christ when you hear him saying to you: 'Follow me!' 'Walk in my path! Stand by my side! Remain in my love! There is a choice to be made: a choice for Christ and his way of life, and his commandment of love."

<<You are in error when you say that bible believing christians have no biblical basis for the claim that we recieve the holy spirit upon believing. Ephesians 1:13, Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised holy spirit, who is a deposit guarenteeing our inheritence until the redemption of those who are Gods posession-to the praise of his glory.>>

I think you need to look at the action of the Holy Spirit in a slightly different context. Once a believer has accepted Jesus, as the believers in Ephesus did, they don't automatically receive the Holy Spirit (which, by the way, was my original point). In this passage from Ephesians, Paul writes that the believers were "sealed" with the Holy Spirit. Paul is emphasizing the parallel to the "seal" of circumcision in the OT which brought those believers into membership in the people of Israel. The new "seal" of the Holy Spirit is baptism, which brings NT believers into membership with Gods' Church. (See Romans 4:11-22; 2 Cor. 1:22; and, Eph. 4:30).

God bless,

Rich


thanks fo responding,
two things,
1. the believers recieved the holy spirit when they belived. thats what it says.
2. the man was not earnest in his seeking God, that is why he went away sad. the scripture concludes wth his real heart, the heart that Jesus knew, he loved himself more than he loved God. thats why he wouldnt give up his good.
you are right on some points, God does call us to holiness. but the question is, where does it come from? certainly not from us. be honest with yourself, can you really be good enough to save yourself. only God can save you. read galatians. we are saved by God. the law leads us to him. we know what kind of God he is because of his law. the fullfillment of the law is to love your neighbor. but we cant do that in our own strength. only Gods spirit can do that in us. that is biblical. Galatians, the fruit if the spirit is love. not our efforts. we have to submit to God for love, not manufacture it ourselves.

God bless you, let him teach you.


you answered me on a very superficial level. im not trying to be insulting, but what is the purpose of eating Jesus' flesh and drinking his blood literally. the reason the followers left is because thats what they thought he meant. and i never brought up the subject of whether or not someone could lose their salvation.

The purpose? For one, the Eucharist is a wonderful source of grace. It helps cleanse of of sin (see the Catechism 1391-95). However, it is more a preventive measure, I think. We receive grace for the avoidance of future sin. If one takes communion in mortal sin, it does not wipe out that serious sin, and in fact it is a further grave sin to partake in that state. More than once a week is of great spiritual benefit, but not required, just as the more prayer the better. It helps give us spiritual strength.

again you are missinterpereting the scripture.

No orthodox Christian for the first 1500 years interpretted scripture as you. Read the early church fathers ..... see what the earliest Christians actually believed and what many of them were martyred for.

Jesus said he will lose none the father has given him, and the blood of Jesus covers us from all sin. although it might be possible to leave God.

Bingo! My point exactly. And how do we leave God?

read Galations, we are saved by grace, not works.

Actually that's Ephesians 2:8-10:

Ephesians 2:8-10 "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God - not because of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

First off, I want to say .... AMEN! We agree. We are save by grace through faith. When it is included in proper context, we see that works are not antithetical to faith, but rather, the necessary "outworking" of it. In verses 8 and 9, St. Paul is stressing the causational primacy of grace and faith, and the futility of mere human works not preceded by grace. But in verse 10 he teaches that good works ordained by God, and always proceeding from His grace, are equally part of salvation and justification. The whole passage is more in accord with Catholic both/and thinking than with some Protestants either/or dichotomous perspective. This saving action is a gift from God which comes through faith and is not something that can be attained on one's own. Good works, therefore, do not in and of themselves save, so that no one can boast of attaining salvation through self-effort. On the other hand, we have been made "in Christ Jesus" for good works. The doing of good works was planned out by God before creation and is an intergral part of Christian life.

and you misquoted john 3. it says we must by born of water and the spirit, not born again of water and the spirit. we are born of water when we are first born.

OK, here are the verses (KJV):
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
4Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
5Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
6That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
7Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

Jesus is reffering to our first birth(physical) and our second birth(spiritual)or, our need for one.(spiritual birth).

For one thing, Jesus is stating something which we must do to enter the kingdom of God. I hardly think the natural birth of every human being qualifies as a necessary stipulation. Everyone who walks the face of the earth could claim obedience to that. So what does He mean by "water and the Spirit"? I think the answer to this question comes a few verses later, in verse 22, "After this Jesus and his disciples went into the land of Judea; there he remained with them and baptized." Jesus speaks of being born again, of water and the Spirit, then leaves Nicodemus to baptize people. Is this a coincidence? Only if you want it to be. Contextually speaking, it certainly would seem that Jesus is speaking of baptism.

please try to understand what God is trying to do in our lives. naturally we are in rebellion, we need his grace to bring us to him, and that is exactly what he is trying to do. and, i never said we shouldnt repent, you assumed that is what i meant. what i meant was, we cant save ourselves, only God can do that.

We agree.

we are lost on our own Martin. we cant do anything to save ourselves, only God can save.

AMEN!

we need him and we need to know him. that is mans greatest need.

AMEN again!

and i mean a real relationship with him, based on who he is as revealed in the bible.

I agree ..... but nowhere in the bible does it claim to be the sole and final source of knowing Jesus. We didn't even have an official bible for over 300 years. People came to know and love Jesus through the Church.

the only reason i will debae doctrinal views is because it is imperitive that we put our trust inthe true and living God.

That's good to hear. I have similar views.

i hope God shows himself to you and leads you into a close relationship with him.

God has shown Himself to me and I have a deep relationship with Him. I know Him through the Bible and the Church.

God bless you Thank you and God bless you, too.

p.s. please dont be offended by my honesty, remember the bible says be completly humble and gentle, bearing with one another in love.

I appreciate your thoughts. May you come to see His real Truth as revealed and taught for 2000 years in the Catholic Church.


You've said numerous times that we are saved by grace, not of works....and that holiness is not of ourselves, etc.

This is the Catholic position as well.

The works that we do are not self-initiated, but grace-initiated. We have to actually *do* the works - which is obedience and cooperation to/with the Will of God.

We are called to holiness, which is righteousness that leads to perfection. This is only possible by the grace of God, received ordinarily through the sacraments, and extraordinarily in other ways.

Baptism serves a purpose. The Lord's Supper serves a purpose. Confession/Reconciliation/Penance serves a purpose. Confirmation serves a purpose. Marriage/Holy Orders serves a purpose. Annointing of the Sick/Extreme Unction serves a purpose.

These things are not of human origins, but the way God provides special grace - needed for the continuation in a faithful life after these significant points in our life.

We are like an empty glass when we are born into this world. At our baptism, we are filled with grace. When we sin, we pour a bit of that grace out of the glass each time. The sacraments help fill it again, as well as help us keep it full.

This is how we approach salvation..we should want to give the Lord a glass that is over flowing.....

God bless, Matt


martin, i do know Gods real truth, maybe not as much as you think you do. i hope your relationship with him is real. grace is given to us by God. it does not come through the eucharist. it is your choice to believe whatever you want. the bible doesnt teach that we recieve grace through communion, but in it we remember what Jesus has done. "do this in rememberance of me".he did not say "do this to recieve grace".
our realationship with God depends on our view of him. i believe you have some healthy understanding of Gods word, but we all need to grow. i agree with alot of what you say, but some catholic teachings are destructive. how can Mary have been sinnless. she called Jesus her savior.
and how can the pope be infalible? he is just a man. the bible teaches extensively on salvation and i in no one am convinced i need the aid of the catholic church to save me. God saves me. thats it, no one else. the body of Christ, those who trust in him are appreciated by me very much and i am thankful for them. but the church doesnt save. God does. i hope you agree with that, i think you do.


matt, we should want to approach the Lord with a full glass, i agree. the question is, who fills us. the lord fills us.the catholic church is fallible just like any other church, so for your sake, i hope your hope is not in the church, but in the true and living God who died for our sins. and no one else.
adam


martin, i do know Gods real truth, maybe not as much as you think you do.

I make no claims of knowing the totality of God's real truth.

i hope your relationship with him is real.

It's as real as it gets .... just as I pray that yours is.

grace is given to us by God.

AMEN!

it does not come through the eucharist. it is your choice to believe whatever you want. the bible doesnt teach that we recieve grace through communion, but in it we remember what Jesus has done. "do this in rememberance of me".he did not say "do this to recieve grace".

Matter conveys grace all over the place in Scripture: baptism confers regeneration: Acts 2:38, 22:16, 1 Pet 3:21 (cf. Mk 16:16, Rom 6:3-4), 1 Cor 6:11, Titus 3:5. Paul's "handkerchiefs" healed the sick (Acts 19:12), as did even Peter's shadow (Acts 5:15), and of course, Jesus' garment (Mt 9:20-22) and saliva mixed with dirt (Jn 9:5 ff., Mk 8:22-25), as well as water from the pool of Siloam (Jn 9:7). Anointing with oil for healing is encouraged (Jas 5:14). Then there is the laying on of hands for the purpose of ordination and commissioning (Acts 6:6, 1 Tim 4:14, 2 Tim 1:6) and to facilitate the initial outpouring of the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17-19, 13:3, 19:6), and for healing (Mk 6:5, Lk 13:13, Acts 9:17-18). Even under the Old Covenant, a dead man was raised simply by coming in contact with the bones of Elisha (2 Kings 13:21)!

Let's look at John 6:

Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me. This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live for ever.

It's obvious that Christ's grace is poured out upon those who eat his flesh and drink his blood.

i agree with alot of what you say, but some catholic teachings are destructive. how can Mary have been sinnless. she called Jesus her savior.

Catholics agree. Mary needed a Savior. She even calls Jesus her savior. Let me give you an analogy that might help in your understanding of the Immaculate Conception.

Borrowing from an article:

Suppose a man falls into a deep pit, he cries out for help, and someone hears his plea, reaches down, and pulls him out. The man has been "saved" from the pit (cf. Psalm 40:2-3). Now imagine a woman walking along, and she too is about to topple into the pit, but at the very moment that she is falling in, someone reaches out, holds her back, and prevents her from falling in. She too has been saved from the pit, but in an even better way: she was not simply taken out of the pit, she was prevented from getting defiled in the mud in the first place. This is the illustration Christians have used for a thousand years to explain how Mary was saved by Christ. By receiving Christ's grace at the exact instant of her conception, she had his grace applied to her before she was able to become mired in original sin and its stain, and so she was saved in an even more immanent manner than we are.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) thus describes her as "the most excellent fruit of redemption" (CCC 508) in that she was "redeemed in a more exalted fashion, by reason of the merits of her Son" (CCC 492). She has more reason to call God her Savior than we do, because he saved her in an even more glorious manner!

and how can the pope be infalible? he is just a man.

The Pope's infallibility is quite limited to specific circumstances. He is only considered infallible when he will teach officially in his capacity as Pope in matters of faith and morals to be held by the universal Church. His personal opinions are not considered infallible not do we think the Pope's life &/or actions are to be impeccable (a few Pope's have been big time sinners). We have this from Jesus himself, who promised the apostles and their successors the bishops, the magisterium of the Church: "He who hears you hears me" (Luke 10:16), and "Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven" (Matt. 18:18). Christ instructed the Church to preach everything he taught (Matt. 28:19-20) and promised the protection of the Holy Spirit to "guide you into all the truth" (John 16:13). That mandate and that promise guarantee the Church will never fall away from his teachings (Matt. 16:18, 1 Tim. 3:15), even if individual Catholics might.

the bible teaches extensively on salvation and i in no one am convinced i need the aid of the catholic church to save me. God saves me. thats it, no one else. the body of Christ, those who trust in him are appreciated by me very much and i am thankful for them. but the church doesnt save.

The Church IS the Body of Christ with Christ as it's head .... outside of which there is no salvation. There are not multiple bodies of Christ. Can you be saved outside the Body of Christ? There is "no other name under heaven given to men, whereby they must be saved" (Acts 4:12). But we can grasp Christ only through His Church. It is true that He might, had He so willed, have imparted Himself and His grace to all men directly, in personal experience. But the question is not what might have been, but what Christ in fact willed to do. And in fact He willed to give Himself to men through men, that is by the way of a community life and not by the way of isolation and individualism......

An excerpt from an excellent book on Catholicism - "The Spirit of Catholicism" by Karl Adam:

the non-Catholic of good will is already fundamentally united to the Church. It is only that he sees her not. Yet she is there, invisible and mysterious. And the more he grows in faith and in love, the more plainly will she become actually visible to him.....And it is because we believe that very many non-Catholics are already thus invisibly united with the Church, that we do not abandon [p.186] our conviction that this invisible union will one day be made visible in all its beauty. The more consciously and completely we all of us exhibit the spirit of Christ, the more certainly will that hour of grace approach, when the veils will fall from all eyes, when we shall put away all prejudice and misunderstanding and bitterness, when we shall once again as of old extend to one another the hand of brotherhood, when there shall be one God, one Christ, one shepherd and one flock.


Schneiddog,

Yes, the Lord fills us. The question then comes to...by what means does the filling occur? Undoubtedly it is by the Spirit, but the Church plays a role as well. The Spirit works in the Church, though it's members, to bestow graces upon those faithfully receiving in an ordinary manner thru the sacraments.

We must see the Church as indispensible...we cannot come fully to the Lord without her. The Lord God has made her necessary; has sanctified her with His precious blood; and has annointed her with His Holy Spirit.

God bless, Matt


i agree, the church is very important. who is the church? the body of belivers in jesus. agree?


for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Mary was a sinner, her whole life. what you said was made up.you need to learn to understand symbolism. do you think Jesus really had to spit in the dirt? what didnt he have to do something like that when he raised Lazarus from the dead. he didnt. but after lazarus was made alive he said, take the grave clothes off.


It is more than that, as I have found that profession to be somewhat lacking. Rather, I choose to go further into saying that it is the body of all who profess the complete set of truths, with one singular voice. Each person no longer remains an individual, but conforms to the Divine Will of God.

God bless, Matt


iagree, but that depends on what"truths" your talking about.i believe God can speak through men, but if they contradict scripture, its not God talking.


Ah-ha! Yes, this is certainly true!

Which then brings us to a very interesting question....

How do we discern what contradicts Scripture, what Scripture is silent on, and what Scripture affirms or commands?

God bless, Matt


for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Mary was a sinner, her whole life.

Let's look at the verse you quoted.

Romans 3:23 .... "All have sinned ...."; we view Mary and Jesus as exceptions to this. The word "all" (pas in Greek) does not always means "every single one without exception." Some common examples .... "all Israel will be saved," (Romans 11:26), but we know that many will not be saved. Romans 15:14, Paul describes members of the Roman church as "....filled with all knowledge...." (cf. 1 Cor 1:5 in KJV) ... but we know they don't know every single thing without exception. 1 Cor 15:22: "As in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive" .... but we know every single person on earth without exception won't be "made alive".

Hundreds of similar examples can be brought forth. "All" doesn't always mean everyone and everything with no exceptions.

what you said was made up.you need to learn to understand symbolism. do you think Jesus really had to spit in the dirt?

Oh course not ... he could have easily heal him without it. Nobody even needed to go up to Him and ask Him to be healed either .... being God, He knows this already. People could have stayed home and prayed to Him. But He didn't did He? Throughout the New Testement, matter is used to confer grace .... as I have already pointed out. But He wants us to come to Him personally, to establish a close relationship. He gives us the sacraments to help confer His grace to His people.


Jesus was God, therefore he was sinnless. Mary was a human, therefore she was born under the curse. a sinner. if the bible teaches otherwise let me know.


Jesus was at the same time, 100% human and 100% divine. His divinity He got from God, His humanity He got from Mary. His two natures were in total agreement. We know from Hebrews that Jesus Christ never sinned. But here is the problem if one denies the Immaculate Conception: How could Jesus never sin and have His two wills in one accord if His human nature (which He got from Mary and noone else) was in fact a fallen, sinful nature. That was an argument from theology. Here's one from Scripture:

Deuteronomy 23 is a chapter that shows that under the Old Covenant, (which would be in effect until the moment of Christ's death) a person had to have the generational sin removed before he/she entered the synagogue. Even if that person could live a perfectly holy life, that person couldn't enter the synagogue. The same applies to Mary and Our Lord. Mary indeed would have to be very holy person if she was pregnant with and nuturing the Savior of the World. She would in effect, be much more than any synagogue, even the Temple in Jerusalem for she would be carrying divinity itself inside of her. In the place of the generational sin of the Jews, it was the original sin of all mankind that Mary had to be preserved from. Here as in all other Marian doctrines, the point is not to exalt or worship Mary, but to safeguard essential doctrines about Christ. That, schneiddog, is how the Bible teaches the Immaculate Conception.

To finish this


Do you just totally ignore anything and everything people try to explain to you?


im sorry, but you are mistaken, and you are coming up with unbiblical doctine. Marys parents were both sinners. therfore, she was a sinner. Jesus didnt have to inherit a sinful nature from her entirely because he was and is God. he can do whatever he wants. we can base that arguement on scripture, but not Mary being sinless.


Welcome to Catholicsource!


just because you have an explanation for something, doesnt mean its correct. i understand what you are saying, but i dont think you understand what the bible is saying.


we discern whether or not something contradicts the bible, by reading the bible. if i tell you Jesus didnt die on the cross and i say that is from God, al you have to do is read the bible to finde out i am wrong.
God doesnt leave anything out that we need to know. the bible teaches us who God is and what he has done for us. and what he wants to do in our lives.


Please take the Marian discussion to the thread entitled "Mary".

Thanks,

Roni


How do we discern this, then?

Let's say I hold to a specific position that says that Jesus is not God Himself, but merely the son of God. (This is for example purposes only, not an actual position I hold.) Certainly Iíve read all over that Jesus is the Son of God....but I havenít ever read where it states that Jesus is God. The verses in the Bible that others have used to "prove" that Jesus is God donít speak to me in that way. So, whatís the final authority on the issue? I may not read the same thing into Sacred Scripture that you do. You can tell me over and over again that I am wrong, and use verse upon verse to try to prove me wrong, but youíre "just a man", while Iím relying upon reading the written Word of God for my determination.

Is this an issue which can be settled between us by merely a reading of Sacred Scripture alone, or does it require us to look elsewhere in addition to the Scriptures?

God bless, Matt


I'm "coming up with unbiblical doctrine"? It's really quite amazing that you would start your response with that, and then never give your rebuttal to my arguments! I think we are doing everyone on this website a great disservice by talking past each other. I don't mean to be rude Schneidogg, but before you make a statement like that, address my arguments.

I entirely agree with you that Mary's parents were sinless. If Mary wasn't preserved from the stain of original sin, she too would have been a sinner.

You are correct in saying that Jesus "was and is God" but, He was and is also human. 100% divine and 100% human at the same time.

Which brings me to my argument from theology. His two natures were in one accord. That would be impossible if the human nature He received from Mary was fallen. You never addressed that argument. Well Schneidogg, are you going to?

As for you position you said, "We can base that argument on Scripture." How? By ignoring the biblical evidence I cited and explained (Deuteronomy 23)?

Schneidogg, please respond to my arguments instead of merely restating your position.

Your brother in Christ,

autoexec.batman


When I said in a response to schneidogg, "I agree that Mary's parents were sinless", I meant to say, "I agree that Mary's parents were sinners".

Thank you for catching that Rose Mary.

Everyone's brother in Christ,

autoexec.batman


you wrong Matt, the bible clearly states that Jesus is God, and anyone who is earnestly seeking God and via the truth, will find that that teaching is evident in scripture.John 1:1,hebrews 1;5-14, collosians 1:15-19 and Jesus told Thomas if you have seen me you have seen the Father. and that is only the beginning. if you see how the catholic church has interpereted the bible throughout history i dont think you will be able to trust their "infalability".
im not trying to slam the church but ive seen over and over again the destruction the catholic church has done through history and to peoples eternal destiny.


i never said Marys parents were sinnles. and im sorry if i was lazy and offended you. all humans are sinners. mary called God her savior, because she needed one. only sinners need saviors. Jesus was born sinnles, mans fallenes can never change Gods perfection. please, think about what im saying, dont just react to it, what im saying is true and it makes perfect sense, if it were possible for mary to be sinnles then Jesus died for nothing. why would any of us have to be born sinners. Mary wasnt declared to be born sinnles unitil pope pius IX (1846-78AD)declared her so.


When I said, "I agree that Mary's parents were sinless" that was a typo. What I meant to say was, "I agree that Mary's parents were sinners."

Schneidogg, you're still talking past me. I didn't take anything you said to me personaly. As a general rule you're correct when you say that all humans are sinners, but I maintain however, that there are two exceptions: Our Lord and Our Blessed Mother.

Jesus was born sinless, and he had two natures which were in total agreement. As a consequence, Mary had to have her soul preserved from the stain of original sin. That is my argument from theology. You never gave me a rebuttal. That is the third time I've repeated this argument. Why do you never address it?

You said, "please, think about what im saying, don't just react to it..." I am thinking about what you're saying. That's why I'm able to refute your arguments. Refutations which, oddly enough, you never counter.

You continued, "what im saying is true and it makes perfect sense,..." I disagree. That's why we're having this discussion.

You totally misrepresented the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception by saying that if Mary was immaculately conceived, then Jesus died for nothing. A bold untruth like that makes me seriously doubt that you even tried to do your homework by finding out what the Catholic Church teaches on the subject. Let me quote Pope Pius IX:

"The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the moment jof conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almightly God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin." (Ineffabilis Deus)

The grace that preserved Mary from the stain of original sin came entirely from the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Sice God transcends time, He allowed the future event of Christ's Passion, Death, and Resurrection to preserve her.

Rather that accurately and intelligently refute the Catholic position, you make a cariacature of the Catholic position and refute THAT.

Mary did in fact need a savior. That's what I'm talking about when I speak of Christ's Passion, Death, and Resurrection transcending time and the grace thereof actively preserving Mary's soul from original sin.

As for Pope Pius IX's declaration, this is not when the doctrine was invented, but rather when the Pope felt it needed to be defined.

Your brother in Christ,

autoexec.batman


I have not overlooked your arguements, nor have I looked past what you are saying. And I have answered your statements about Mary. If she never sinned, she didn't need a savior. What you are telling me doesn't make any sense. Jesus was sinnless because he was God. Mankinds falleness is not greater thatn God perfection. I understand why you believe the way you do, but it can not be backed up in scripture. If Mary needed a savior that has to mean at one time or another she too was fallen. Meaning Jesus' mom was a sinner. If she never sinned she never needed a savior. Besides, when Jesus saves us, we still have a sinnful nature. Do you mean to tell me that Mary got saved and then didn't have a sinnful nature anymore? How come when we get saved we still have one. My point is there is no biblical teaching for the churches position. Mary was a human, born under the curse. The wages of sin is death. Mary died too. Mary's assumption into heaven is also unsubstantiated in scripture. I am sorry if I didn't get the history perfect, and I know you can't debase an entire church on the failings of men, but I do believe to say the Pope is innfallible especially when they are obviously fallible is very dangerous.
Sincerely, Adam


Adam, I don't know where to start. You throw out objections by the dozens .... and yet when we try to explain and address your objections, either from scripture or just from our heart, you simply ignore it.

I understand who the Apostles felt when they remarked about the hardness of heart of many of the Jews.

Rather than to continue with what has become a major waste of both of our time, why don't you spend some time actually learning what and why Catholics believe what they do? Start with the Catholicsource Homepage. It has many links that explain and defend Catholicism.


Continue on with the discussion.