Saying the things polite Christians don't.

I think most Christians would agree that we ought to be witnessing to anyone who isn’t a Christian. That’s practically a given. So then, our first task must be to qualify our audience. Are Catholics Christian?

They look like Christians. They have a Bible on the lectern, a crucifix on the wall. But sadly, that’s where the similarity ends.

Christians don’t pray to Mary. Nor do they pray to the saints. We hold Mary in high esteem, she is mother of our Lord Jesus, but that’s where it ends. Catholics turn to Mary in prayer, hold her in adoration. Catholics call this idolatry veneration, but the practise goes far beyond this. Statues of Mary adorn Catholic churches and there are prayer cards in the millions printed to the Blessed Virgin.

Among the names given to Mary perhaps the most damning are The Queen of Heaven and Mary as Co-Redemptrix.

Co-Redemptrix! Just pause here and think about that. Mary, as co-equal with our Lord Jesus as the Author of Our Salvation. Now, when you have swallowed that, ask yourself if Catholics are Christians.

A Christian depends on Christ for his or her salvation. Christ alone. Even if Mary could influence her Son (she can’t), Christians would not turn to her because Christians depend on Jesus alone for salvation.

Mary can do nothing. She cannot hear prayers, she cannot answer prayers, the Bible is quite clear on that. Ecclesiastes 9:5. All Catholics succeed in doing when they pray to Mary is breaking the 2nd Commandment.

Then we have prayers to the Saints. I remember a tv news segment about the Australian woman, Mary MacKillop, who was canonised in 2010. The interviewer was talking to a teenager in hospital. The teenager was delighted that Mary, formerly a nurse, was sainted. She (the teen), believed that her prayers to Mary MacKillop would make her well. This really tore at my heart. Inside I was shouting, ‘Pray to Jesus!’ And I was wishing the interviewer would say something. But of course, she didn’t.

Prayers to saints are like prayers to the Virgin Mary; useless and a breaking of the 2nd commandment. A person might as well pray to an old bed-sock. Yet the Catholic prayers to dead saints must far outweigh their prayers to Our Father, who, ironically, is the one who can answer prayers.

The next damning practise of Catholics is the teaching and belief of purgatory.

The idea of purgatory was kicked around as early as the 5th century but it wasn’t until the 11th century that it began to take shape as we know it today. Finally in 1254 at the Council of Lyon it was given its definition as a place where those without mortal sin may be cleansed after death.

Purgatory has been a real money spinner for the Catholic Church as they sell indulgences and hold Masses, for a price, for the dead. Who wouldn’t pay a few bucks to have the blowtorch removed from their loved one’s feet? But even this is not the real evil of Purgatory.

You see the concept of Purgatory assumes that when a person dies they still have unresolved sin. They go to Purgatory to be punished for this sin. The time they are in Purgatory can be shortened by purchasing indulgences or having a mass said for them. There are rules about who goes to purgatory but the short version is that it is just about everyone.

The real evil is the assumption that what Jesus did on the cross was not enough. When a person dies they still have sin to be dealt with. This is about as Unchristian as it gets. If any one thing disqualifies a Catholic from Christianity it is the belief in Purgatory.

As every Christian knows, that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Rom 10:9

We are rendered lily white when we become Christians. JESUS DID IT ALL. There is nothing remaining to be punished for in this man made Purgatory. Jesus forgives us every single infinitesimal sin. He leaves nothing. And if you believe otherwise, well, you are probably not a Christian. You see, believing in Jesus, which means more than simply believing He walked among us, but means believing in who He is and what He does. It just doesn’t add up that a person can believe that Christ doesn’t completely forgive, that He leaves something for purgatory, and still be a Christian.

Okay, so what if I’m a Catholic who doesn’t believe in Purgatory? Suppose I have a priest who has never spoken about it.

You don’t call this guy, Father, do you? Matthew 23:9 has something to say about that. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

Have you heard of the concept of Papal infallibility? This is a dogma that says that the Pope is free from the possibility of error. He can’t be wrong. Forgive my ignorance but I thought there was only One to whom perfection could be attributed.

What about transubstantiation? This is the concept that the bread and wine used to represent the Blood and Body of Jesus in the Holy Communion actually becomes His Flesh and Blood. Read that again. It’s a very weird belief.

Okay, I’ll admit it, I am nitpicking.

Naturally all we can do is look at the behaviour and practises of Catholics. Only God can see the heart. I’m sure there are some Catholics that for whom Jesus is first, front and centre, every time. Unfortunately these are few and far between.

Should we witness to Catholics? Yes. There are just too many points of difference between a Christian and a Catholic. I have by no means made an exhaustive account of them.

I would mention that we ought to be gentle in our approach to Catholics; most are sincere in their faith, and practising Catholics are, for the better part, fairly decent people. Catholics breed Catholics. There is often a long family history with the church and we shouldn’t start our witnessing with the artillery. This can only cause resentment.

As always proceed with prayer. Lifelong held beliefs are tough to break and you will be rejected. But nothing is impossible with God.

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Comments on: "Should We Witness to Catholics?" (12)

  1. I haven’t read all of your article yet, but I can still begin with a few thoughts. Not in any particular order of importance:

    1) the term “co-” does not always mean equal. Is a co-pilot equal to the pilot?

    2) If praying for an intercession is wrong, then so it is when we pray to God to ask Him to help a good friend or relative in an important situation such as a surgery, a difficult time in a relationship, etc. We have an example of intercession occurring at the wedding feast at Cana. Jesus’ first miracle came at the request of His mother, who “influenced” Him. He was at the wedding, too, so why didn’t they just go directly to Him?

    3) Referring to Mary as the Queen of Heaven does not make her God’s equal. That she is the mother of The King (only in the earthly sense concerning the second Person of the Trinity, of course) makes her a queen. All mothers of kings are called “queens.”
    We have an example with Queen Elizabeth today. Her mother was wife of King George VI and also a “Queen Elizabeth”. She gave birth to the currently reigning Queen Elizabeth. While she retained the name of queen, she was never equal to the king in terms of authority.

    4) And I’m not sure where you heard we Catholics “hold Mary in adoration.” Not true.

    Enough for now. Looking forward to future exchanges on these and other items in your article! — Tony

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  2. I take your points although I really feel the difference is moot; Mary has no capacity whatsoever in heaven. She does not influence The Lord Jesus. Mary is dead.

    1. Mary played no role whatsoever in the cross, or in our salvation. She is not, was not, Co in any capacity.
    Whether ‘co’ refers to 50% or 1% the value is irrelevant; Mary has no capacity whatsoever as a redeemer.

    Jesus himself illustrated Mary’s importance when He said, “Whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is my Brother and Sister and Mother.”

    2. We are back to the same point; Mary was just a woman, a sinner like you and I. If you could have asked her at the time she would have told you this. She cannot intercede for the dead for the dead know nothing.

    Romans 3:10 says – As it is written:
    “There is no one righteous, not even one;
    There is no one who understands;
    There is no one who seeks God.

    We know that praying to the dead is wrong. Deut 18:11 tells us that anyone who “consults with the dead” is “detestable to the Lord.”

    I’m sorry if this causes Catholics pain but the truth is they have been misled with lies about a sinless woman, a perpetual virgin. (The Bible tells us that Mary had more children after Jesus but Catholics believe she remained a virgin).

    3. Queen of Heaven. It doesn’t follow that the mother of Christ should necessarily become a Queen. Christ reigns at the right hand of the Father. There is no mention of a throne for Mary. Ordinarily on earth, a child becomes king by virtue of having royal parents, not the other way around.

    You made reference to an earthly queen and it should be noted that even if Mary was entitled to such a position, earthly queens do not reign perpetually.

    Thank you for taking an interest in my blog and or taking the time out of your day to write your comment.
    Cheers, Harry

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    • In the same sense that the Old Testament refers to the “sins of the father fall to the son,” so is it that you and I are paying the price of sins committed in the Church centuries ago. Because of the resulting split, we now have 20,000+ denominations which necessitate our having this discussion!

      you request an answer with your response, I will politely leave space on your blog to others after these thoughts.
      1) The “easiest” one, but with the longest answer, first: the perpetual virginity of Mary. Aramaic and the other Middle Eastern languages do not have a word for “cousin.” Families had close relationships with extended families. They lived and travelled closer together than we are accustomed to in our time. This explains why it was easy for Jesus to have stayed behind in the Temple, at age twelve, without his parents discovering it immediately.

      Without a word for “cousin,” relatives were described as being brother or sister, as children of father’s sister, etc. This alone doesn’t prove the point. When Jesus was on the Cross, there would have been no reason for Him to transfer responsibility of His mother to an apostle if he had natural siblings through her. Families took care of their own back then, which is why a widow without children is portrayed as being so pitiful in the Bible. Also, people of that time weren’t displaced as is common today. It wasn’t as though Jesus had siblings who had taken jobs with our state department or Boeing and had left Judea for Washington D.C. and Seattle.

      In addition, Scripture says that Mary and Joseph did not have physical relations until Jesus was born. Modern English has come to imply that that whatever was not happening until something occurs, must automatically begin afterward. That is really inaccurate. “Until” only brackets the time frame being described. It logically says nothing about later. For example, when Jesus told us that He will be with us “until the end of the age,” are we to conclude after the end of the world He won’t be with us?

      In addition, Martin Luther (from “Sermons on John”) and John Calvin (in his “Harmony”) understood that Mary remained a virgin and that referring to the brothers of Christ did not mean that she had several sons, respectively… And in a separate issue, the Greek “adelphos” (brother) is often used in non-blood relationships. Example, in Acts 22:13, when Ananias cured Paul of his blindness, he said: “Saul, my brother, regain your sight,” though they had different parents.

      2) Back to the “co-redemptrix” issue. I wasn’t clear earlier. We Catholics do not believe that Mary redeemed us. Rather, the “co-“ respects the fact that she fully “co-operated” with God’s Will through the exercise of her free will.
      God, of course, can do everything without us. He allows us to be part of His plan. In a basketball equivalent, God can score all the points He wants without our involvement. However, out of His great love for us, he permits us to participate to the level which we can as humans. In the case of the Incarnation, He allowed Mary to get the “assist” on this most important basket. She receives credit for co-operating, not for scoring (redeeming us).

      3) Queen of Heaven? At the Annunciation, the angel Gabriel addressed Mary with, “Hail, favored one!” (Luke 1:28) The Greek “chairo” was used (hail). This was reserved for royalty, something not used with an ordinary Jewish peasant girl… She is still the queen mother, albeit a non-reigning queen. I’m not suggesting that she has a throne in Heaven, either. However, we cannot use the argument that because something is not specifically mentioned in the Bible, we cannot logically conclude something. If that were the case, then we cannot believe in the Trinity.

      4) Was Mary sinless? Back to Like 1:28 and “full of grace.” “Kecharitomene” also means “perfected in grace.” One cannot be “full of grace” if there is some sin taking up space.

      5) Talking to dead people as forbidden in Deuteronomy 18:10-11. True Catholics know we are not to “consult ghosts and spirits or seek oracles from the dead.” Participating in séances is but one example of this sin. Prayers for the intercession of saints, however, are not attempts to communicate one-on-one with dead people. We are not trying to elicit any type of verbal response. First of all, while their earthly bodies no longer have life, as Christians who must believe in the Resurrection, we also recognize “those who have been raised to new life.”

      In the Transfiguration, Moses and Elijah appeared and were talking to Jesus. This was not a flashback. The three apostles were privileged to see those two who had passed from this life into the next life. Elsewhere, Luke 15:7, “I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.” Joy doesn’t emanate from the dead. Also, in Hebrews 12:1 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses…” This was referring to the martyrs who had gone before the early Christians. It was a source of encouragement. Something we certainly need today in the face of ever-increasing battles with secular humanism!

      Time to stop. Thank you for your patience. Before I go, I must give credit to “What Catholics Really Believe” (Nineveh’s Crossing, 2010) for its help with the Greek and a couple of ideas I used. Best of luck in your search for truth and evangelization! — Tony

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  3. That should have read “IF you request an answer to your response…” Am in a hurry to go to work and I didn’t proof the “cut and paste” as well as I should have.

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  4. Tony Cisneros said:

    YES ! YES ! YES !

    ESPECIALLY THE ROMAN-“CATHOLICS” OF THE SATANIC ROMAN “CATHOLIC” CULT OF POPISH “JESUITIC” VATICANISM ! ! !

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    • Tony Cisneros said:

      I Might Add That I Personally Come From A LONG BLOOD-LINE OF SPANISH-SPEAKING ROMAN-“CATHOLICS” GOING BACK TO THE 1400s & 1500s ! ! !

      As My Mother’s Surname Goes Back To The Spanish Inquisition’s 2nd Inquisitor-General:

      FRANCISCO (GONZALO) JIMENEZ (XIMENES) DE CISNEROS !

      And My Father’s Surname Goes Back To The VERY FOUNDER OF THE “JESUITS”:

      INIGO (IGNATIUS) LOPEZ-RECALDE (DE [OF] LOYOLA) !

      My Birth-Name Is ANTHONY JOSEPH LOPEZ (DE) CISNEROS ! ! ! ! ! ! !

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  5. Tony Cisneros said:

    OBAMA’S “ASSASSINATION” & “RESURRECTION”

    Get This SCENARIO Folks:

    NSA Has Been Surveiling U.S. Citizens Since The End Of WWII.

    NSA Goes Wild After 9-11-01 & Publicly Makes It Known They Are Listening To ALL Public Phone Calls & Reading ALL Mail (Snail-Mail &-Or E-mail) Of ALL For “[Y]OUR SECURITY” Via The “Patriot Act”.

    After 9-11-01 They Are Hearing/Listening/Seeing ALL That U.S. Citizens DO, SAY & WRITE Via The Personal Computers & Cell-Phones (Whether The PCs &-Or Cell-Phones Are ON -Or- Off [Especially When U.S. Citizens Are In The Bathroom]).

    NSA, In Cahoots With OBAMA, Works Hard To IMPLEMENT ‘OBAMACARE’ And FORCE ALL U.S. CITIZENS TO GET A COMPUTER &-OR CELL-PHONE IMPLANT IN THEIR FOREHEADS OR RIGHT-HAND.

    OBAMA THEN GETS “ASSASSINATED”; ONLY TO BE MIRACULOUSLY “RESURRECTED” BY “JESUIT”-‘POPE’ FRANCIS-1 [THE ‘JESUITS’ ARE HISTORIC PRACTITIONERS OF ‘BLACK-MAGIC’, THE ‘OCCULT’, ‘ASSASSINATIONS’ & ‘BLOOD-OATH-TAKERS’]: WHO CAUSES THE WHOLE WORLD TO “WORSHIP” OBAMA; BY MAKING A STATUE (IMAGE) OF OBAMA & SETTING UP THE AFOREHEAD STATUE IN JERUSALEM:

    CAUSING ALL HUMANS ON EARTH TO FALL DOWN & WORSHIP OBAMA–AND RECEIVE HIS MARK IN THEIR RIGHT-HAND OR FOREHEAD–OR FACE IMMEDIATE DEATH ! ! ! ! ! !

    THUS, THE LITERAL FULFILLMENT OF THE HOLY BIBLE’S BOOK OF REVELATION CHAPTER 13, VERSES 11 THRU 18 WILL LITERALLY TAKE PLACE & BE FULLFILLED TO A ‘T’ ! ! ! ! ! !

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  6. Wow, Tony, that’s pretty extreme. I know that’s how The Revelation plays out, but Obama? I’m not a fan but I think there are a few things need to happen before the AntiChrist shows his hand.
    Forgive my ignorance, but we haven’t heard a great deal about Obamacare here in Australia. What is it, briefly, and how does it affect prophesy?

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  7. Tony Cisneros said:

    OBAMA’S “ASSASSINATION” & “RESURRECTION” ? ! ? ! ? ! ? ! ? ! ? ! ?

    Get This SCENARIO Folks:

    NSA Has Been Surveiling U.S. Citizens Since The End Of WWII.

    NSA Goes Wild After 9-11-01 & Publicly Makes It Known They Are Listening To ALL Public Phone Calls & Reading ALL Mail (Snail-Mail &-Or E-mail) Of ALL For “[Y]OUR SECURITY” Via The “Patriot Act”.

    After 9-11-01 They Are Hearing/Listening/Seeing ALL That U.S. Citizens DO, SAY & WRITE Via The Personal Computers & Cell-Phones (Whether The PCs &-Or Cell-Phones Are ON -Or- Off [Especially When U.S. Citizens Are In The Bathroom]).

    NSA, In Cahoots With OBAMA, Works Hard To IMPLEMENT ‘OBAMACARE’ And FORCE ALL U.S. CITIZENS TO GET A COMPUTER &-OR CELL-PHONE IMPLANT IN THEIR FOREHEADS OR RIGHT-HAND.

    OBAMA THEN GETS “ASSASSINATED”; ONLY TO BE MIRACULOUSLY “RESURRECTED” BY “JESUIT”-’POPE’ FRANCIS-1 [THE ‘JESUITS’ ARE HISTORIC PRACTITIONERS OF ‘BLACK-MAGIC’, THE ‘OCCULT’, ‘ASSASSINATIONS’ & ‘BLOOD-OATH-TAKERS’]: WHO CAUSES THE WHOLE WORLD TO “WORSHIP” OBAMA; BY MAKING A STATUE (IMAGE) OF OBAMA & SETTING UP THE AFOREHEAD STATUE IN JERUSALEM:

    CAUSING ALL HUMANS ON EARTH TO FALL DOWN & WORSHIP OBAMA–AND RECEIVE HIS MARK IN THEIR RIGHT-HAND OR FOREHEAD–OR FACE IMMEDIATE DEATH ! ! ! ! ! !

    THUS, THE LITERAL FULFILLMENT OF THE HOLY BIBLE’S BOOK OF REVELATION CHAPTER 13, VERSES 11 THRU 18 WILL LITERALLY TAKE PLACE & BE FULLFILLED TO A ‘T’ ! ! ! ! ! !

    PS.@Harry: I Hope You Understand That This Is A Supposed “SCENARIO” & THAT I AM NOT NECESSARILY “DOGMATIC” THAT OBAMA IS THE “BEAST”, THAT IS, THE “ANTI-CHRIST” POLITICAL-BEAST OF REVELATION CHAPTER 13: VERSES 1[1] THRU 18.

    OBAMACARE IS THE ULTIMATE “UNIVERSAL MEDICAL SOCIALISM” THUS FAR IN THE U.S.A. & IT WILL EVENTUALLY PLAY OUT IN THE WORLD’S STAGE AS COMPULSARY-FORCED ‘UNIVERSAL MEDICAL SOCIALISM’ ON A GLOBAL SCALE–

    PROVIDED OBAMA IS ‘ASSASSINATED’ -&- ‘RESURRECTED’ BY THIS PRESENT “JESUIT”-‘POPE’ FRANCIS-1 OF THE SATANIC ROMAN “CATHOLIC” CULT OF POPISH “JESUITIC” VATICANISM (aka ROMAN-“CATHOLICISM).

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