Answering My Upset Catholic Friends

catholic church
Do you worship THIS, or the Pope or CHRIST?

My latest articles about Pope Francis are upsetting to some of my Catholic friends.  I would like to take this opportunity to answer them and their arguments.  First, I understand how devastating this is to Catholics.  I have always stood up for Catholics and consider them Christians.  What is a Christian?  A Christian is someone who believes that Jesus and Jesus alone is the way to God and heaven.  That Jesus has been fully empowered, by God, to be our salvation.  Those who believe that Christ lived, died, and rose again in order to atone for our sins and to save us from our sinful nature are Christians.  But not only that.  Even Satan knows that much- and he is not going to heaven!  It is that you call Jesus LORD.  That you know HE is your lord- with full sovereignty over you.  That is the difference between Satan’s and our belief.  He will never call Jesus,  ‘LORD’. Jesus told us plainly and simply:

6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.  -John 14

See also what Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 10:

“10 Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. 2 For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. 3 Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. 4 Christ is the culmination of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.

5 Moses writes this about the righteousness that is by the law: “The person who does these things will live by them.”[a] 6 But the righteousness that is by faith says: “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’”[b] (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 “or ‘Who will descend into the deep?’”[c] (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,”[d] that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: 9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”[e] 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

ONLY faith in Christ can save you.  NO amount of GOODNESS or good will or good works will save you.   That is Paul’s clear statement throughout all his letters.  No amount of good works can save you!  Jesus made this COMPLETELY CLEAR in Matt 19: 16-22

“16 Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”

17 “Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.”

18 “Which ones?” he inquired.

Jesus replied, “‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, 19 honor your father and mother,’[a] and ‘love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]”

20 “All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?”

21 Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

22 When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

He did all the good deeds of the Law.  But he wouldn’t follow Jesus.  And so, he was not saved.  In Mark 12:34, Jesus told a priest who had answered him wisely about God’s commandments:

“34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.”  

Let me tell you, ‘not far’ is a terrible thing!!!  The man was wise and had done good things in his life- but he was NOT saved- he was CLOSE.  That is because he would not recognize Jesus as his Savior and Lord.

What did the Pope say?  Concerning homosexuality, he said, verbatim,

“If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

In other words, the mere SEARCHING for the lord is good enough to avoid judgment.  AND note the ‘good will’ part. What is good will if it is not defined by GOD??  Jesus told us what it means to LOVE God and to love HIM.

23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.”- John 14

It is OBEDIENCE that proves we love God.  You cannot hate God and still have ‘good will’ can you?  no.  You cannot love God and have bad will, can you?  no.  Good will must be construed as a loving obedience to God’s commandments.  And God was very clear about what love meant- it means to give up your entire life to love each other.  So, not only should we give up sex, we should give up our children, our husbands & wives, our churches, our friends, our self respect- you name it!  We will give our whole entire LIFE to serve our fellow man.  THAT is love according to Christ.  Yet, here we see a Pope who says you can disobey God blatantly and yet, have ‘GOOD WILL’.  He says that you merely need to SEARCH for the lord and that will give you good will.  Or that disobedience and good will can coincide in one body.  None of this is biblical OR logical.  It isn’t true.  It implies that Man can be wise in his own eyes.  Because in the bible, Jesus said that marriage is between a man and a woman- not because of social norms but BECAUSE we were created male and female!

4 “Haven’t you read,” Jesus replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’?

In Romans 1, Paul (the author of most of the New Testament) called homosexuality ‘sexual impurity’, ‘unnatural’, ‘shameful lust’ & ‘shameful acts’.

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.  21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.  22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

So-called Atheism is one of the disobedient sins that God detests so much that he will harden your hearts so that you CANNOT be saved!  In fact, Romans 1 says that homosexuality is one of the consequences of atheism!  And yet, here is the leader of one of the largest churches in the world saying it’s ‘all good’ as long as you have ‘good will’ in your heart.

What else did he say?

” First of all, you ask me if the God of Christians forgives one who doesn’t believe and doesn’t seek the faith. Premise that – and it’s the fundamental thing – the mercy of God has no limits if one turns to him with a sincere and contrite heart; the question for one who doesn’t believe in God lies in obeying one’s conscience. Sin, also for those who don’t have faith, exists when one goes against one’s conscience. To listen to and to obey it means, in fact, to decide in face of what is perceived as good or evil. And on this decision pivots the goodness or malice of our action.”

He is clearly speaking to atheists when he says, “one who doesn’t believe and doesn’t seek the faith.”  He is not speaking to believers.  Thus, WHO is turning to God with a sincere and contrite heart?  He is attempting to say that an atheist CAN turn to God with a sincere & contrite heart.  How can that be possible? An atheist denies God’s existence!  This is an impossible statement.  There are those who are making excuses for the pope and are saying he is referring to AFTER an atheist comes to believe in God.  But if that were so, there would be no meaning to the entire answer!  He would be saying, those who do believe in God will be saved if they believe in God with a sincere and contrite heart!!  He must be addressing atheists in that sentence!  And who are those that ‘don’t seek THE FAITH’??  What is ‘the faith’?  Well, to Christians the world over, this must be the faith in Jesus and his ability to raise us from the dead.  That he, and he alone, can and will do this for us.  Soooo…. he is saying that those who don’t believe that Jesus is the Son of God and LORD of our salvation can somehow still get to God ‘if they come to him with a sincere & contrite heart!!”  Again, how can you be ‘sincere and contrite’ if you refuse to acknowledge God’s existence and refuse to have faith in Jesus??  You can’t.  That is a logical fallacy.  There’s no need to go to the bible because it makes no sense in and of itself.  But the IDEA that an atheist or agnostic can find MERCY from God even when they deny his existence and they deny Jesus’ lordship is NOT TRUE.  The bible shows us CLEARLY that not giving God credit for EXISTING is the number one sin that angers him.  In fact, for that sin alone, God hardens people’s hearts so THAT THEY CAN NOT BE SAVED.  Does that sound like God could ever take that kind of heart as ‘contrite or sincere’???  No.  Way.

Furthermore, this is NOT an issue of one church saying it is better than another.  This isn’t about the ‘evangelicals’ attacking the catholic church.  This isn’t about using scripture as a battering ram.  This isn’t about ego.  This isn’t about any of the false accusations I have heard some emotional Catholics saying on their pages.   This isn’t about churches AT ALL!  So those who wish to respond in this way need to stop.  Stay focused.  And don’t take out your frustrations with the Pope on your fellow Christians.  The Pope is horribly wrong- he can’t get more wrong.  Christ said, “30 “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”  If you do not call him Lord of Salvation, then you are automatically against him.  The Pope is against Christ- thus, he is evil.   It is our Christian duty to deny his statement.  So stay focused!

Lastly, no one is criticizing your ‘faith’ or your ‘religion’.  I have heard that too many times from offended Catholics.  We are of the SAME faith!  We are of the same RELIGION.  It’s called Christianity.  What you are defending is not Christianity, it is the church denomination you go to.  That’s it.

This is about one man who has spoken blasphemy against the Most High.  He has given false information about the very heart of Christianity.  No one that calls themselves a Christian can stand up with this man.  If you are catholic and don’t demand that this pope be removed immediately- or worse yet, if you defend this man’s statements, then you are endangering your own salvation.  Not because you are evil or have ‘bad intentions’ or ‘bad will’ or because you are a *gasp* Catholic- you endanger your own soul because you are more loyal to a man and a church than to your GOD and your LORD JESUS.  You simply can’t stand by a blatant lie about salvation and about homosexuality (which is ripping our society apart).  If you do, God will see it and HE will judge you far more harshly than any human can do.   BEWARE.

14 comments

  1. As a Christian, I admire your devotion to commenting on various issues, citing various passages to bolster your viewpoint. But I also think those Christians who continue to wrap themselves around rhetorical points of no return concerning homosexuality are sadly lacking in understanding how the Bible was written, the context, and more important the knowledge and time in which the various books were either compiled or written. Truths abound in the Bible, as in the Ten Commandments and in the teachings of Jesus based upon the tenets of the OT. Abominations that do not please God abound in the OT, some of which are repeated or modified in the NT. Same sex sexual relationships is one. But did anyone at that time understand how, for example, the fetus is formed? That is why some people–about 16 percent or so–are left handed or are born with physical defects? There was also no knowledge of genetics from both male and female at the time either and their effect. Most scientists who are specialists in human development believe that during fetal formation slight differences in the amount of certain ingredients–not a medical term, but meaning what the body produces to form a fetus–results in a very small percentage, perhaps 3-4 percent, whose sexual identity is with the same sex rather than the opposite.

    Some who oppose say “love the sinner, hate the sin.” But what is the sin? If the sin is the type of sexual behavior of homosexuals, then where does that leave a percentage of heterosexuals who engage in the same practices? It surely can’t be people of the same sex living together because of economic or other reasons. Nor can it be that people of the same sex cannot have genuine affection for one another either.

    It is sad to me after 88 years of life, a combat veteran of WWII, one who was married to a wonderful wife for 63 years who died a few months ago to read and hear Christians still engaged in pointing out presumed defects in one another and judging whether or not one is a certified Christian. Suggesting Catholics disavow Pope Francis makes me shake my head in disbelief [I’m not a catholic but rather a Methodist/Presbyterian].

    • Hi Phil, because of your age and your politeness in your comment, I respect you. But I do think that you are missing something in your own Christianity. Do you truly LOVE Christ? Can you say, having lived as a Christian, that you have crucified yourself daily to please God? Have you laid down your life for your brother- not in battle, but in spiritual terms- so that they, too, can have eternal life- have you risked humiliation by telling atheists about the love of Christ? I ask you because your comment sounds so lukewarm about God. As if the bible and God are somehow secondary to you. As if the passion of other Christians mystifies you. You are very generalized in your speech concerning Christians ‘still engaged in pointing out presumed defects in one another’. You seem to think that saying Jesus is not necessary for salvation is ‘some minor defect’. How can this be if you have a passion for Christ and God? You equate this topic with the normal back biting of old ladies behind the church doors. Not so! This is touching the very foundation of what it is to BE a Christian. The Pope isn’t some old lady- his opinion and words have a lasting and deep effect on millions of people around the world. It MATTERS what he says. And he knows it. Would you call him a simpleton? I wouldn’t. He has to be an intelligent and astute man to make it through such a political bureaucracy as the Catholic Church. They ARE a nation state, after all. He is a politician as well as a religious leader. You are surprised that I, a Christian, would want Catholics to denounce this pope for what he said? Where is your passion, sir? Where is your jealousy for the name of Jesus? Why do you not care about those millions of people who will be misled by this man? Don’t you know that we are to DIE so that our fellow man should come to know Jesus and the amazing gift of LIFE he offers? By telling these people that Jesus is not necessary, his is condemning them to hell. Does that not stir any anger in your heart? Do you care at all? There is more feeling in your statement about your wife (I’m very sorry for your loss- your pain is evident in your words) than about Christ. And yet, Christ told us to hate those closest to us in comparison to the love we should have for him. While he didn’t mean we should hate those we love, he was making the comparison to show how very much higher in our life Christ should be than our earthly loves. Do you love Christ more than you love your wife? Your sons or daughters?

      Phil, listen, out of respect and love, I ask you to re-evaluate your own relationship with Christ. You are old. I know. And I have no doubt you have seen the worst of humanity by serving in the war. I would like to learn from your wisdom. But in this, you are wrong. You sound more tired and defeated than reasonable and committed to Christ. Perhaps all the evil of mankind has made you tired. But don’t get tired of Christ. I know we should love one another. But sometimes love looks like a correction and a spanking. Saying ‘yes’ to everything does not make a mature adult. It corrupts. Just some thoughts. God bless you.

  2. I have no problem whatever with any Christian religion.

    We are all on the same side. For most of us, we didn’t pick our religion, our religion picked us; I was raised Catholic.

    Anyone who follows the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule has my total support. The rest are just nitpickers, IMHO. Ignore them.

    • Smokey, that is how I used to feel. I have stood by Catholics as many have claimed they are a cult. I still stand by the practitioners. However, after seeing the filth coming out of these pope idolizers, I have learned the inherent danger in disregarding Jesus’ command to not call anyone on earth, ‘father’. It leads to a spiritual hierarchy where people can be deceived into thinking the pope is perfect- or near perfect. This allows one bad man to lead millions to their death.

      • Born and raised catholic, I now refuse to even capitalize the denomination. I was saved by grace, through faith in 2000, (and that not of myself) and witnessed to my family to this day. Though you hesitate to call it a cult, the truth must be told. There are many born again catholics, I’m sure, but I can’t understand why they remain in that church. When the hierarchy sees Mary as co-redemptrix, for example, (their words, not mine), all bets are off. Jesus blood paid the price, not Mary’s obedience or anything else. So many blatant lies and deceit. Papal infallibility, Mary bearing no other children and being “virgin” throughout her life. There are so many areas where that church misleads, and will continue to mislead others. Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing. We need to love our catholic friends, but denounce the misleading of their false doctrine. Jesus “teachings” (to put it politely) to the scribes and pharisees is just as relevant today as when He said what He said, then.

      • Mike, I hesitate because I don’t know any Catholics who worship Mary or who think the Pope is infallible. My father told me that when he was a little boy, it was quite horrible and frightening to be a Catholic boy. It drove my Uncle completely away from God. He told me about being shoved at the feet of Mary and the saints and told to recite Hail Mary’s. He told me of how awful the confessional was. He was utterly and completely sure as a little boy that he was devil filled because of his sexual thoughts- stuff like that. It was considered sacrilege to touch or denounce a nun or priest and it was completely understood that they were ‘holier’ than anyone else. but I just don’t see that today. They do things in weird way- things I find… strange (like little girls in wedding gowns)… but my friends LOVE, love, love JESUS. I have never once heard them talk about Mary. In fact, I’ve never seen them hold a rosary. It just seems so old- all those practices and it doesn’t seem prevalent among modern Catholics. Anyway, I HEAR you. I researched your point about co-redemptrix and Mary. But it doesn’t look like the Catholic Church ever adopted it. It has its adherents but it is not and never has been ‘official’.

    • Smokey,
      Which ten commandments? The Catholic Ten commandments or the real Ten Commandments? The Catholic Church did not like the second commandment because they have statues of saints and of Mary who the kneel to and pray in front of, so they eliminated that one and broke the last the last commandment of coveting into two.
      I am an exCatholic and left because of many theological errors within the church.
      Your analysis of “Anyone who follows the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule” is actually in error. The Ten Commandments were given to mankind to show that, because of our sin nature, we can not meet the requirements of the Law. The New Testament speaks of this and says that if we break only one of the Commandments then we are guilty of them all. All of the requirements of the law was to testify of one thing, that we require a savior. This savior had to be perfect, fulfilling all of the requirements of the law and, since no sin can be forgiven without the shedding of blood, he gave himself over to be the sacrificial lamb for all mankind, and the creation that fell from perfection when Adam fell. It is now up to the individual, through the drawing of the Father, to accept this free gift of eternal salvation.

  3. this must be your God only, for is not my God ,my God has nothing to do a liar like Paul,
    and since you elevate yourself to answer ,why would you call Paul an apostle? you know very well what an apostle is.,and Paul was not.. also he coined that horrible word christian,
    for we don’t serve a greek cristo. I for one opposed everything that takes away from my messiac.

    • Wynn, I hate to tell you, but all of Paul’s books are also in the Catholic bible. So. You’re kinda stuck with him. Also, Jesus HIMSELF said that you are not to call anyone ‘Father’. And the Catholics do that in blatant disobedience to God. And THAT is why they follow an evil man called the pope in BLIND loyalty.

  4. Thank you, Little Short Rebel. Keep speaking the Truth in love…don’t waver! Someone once said, “the further they get from the truth, the more they will hate those who believe, share it, and stand for it”. (not verbatim) We have arrived at/passed the point of 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12. “…even so Lord Jesus, come…quickly!”

  5. You know if there isnt anything hates its the truth. Its sad that we need to to explain the facts laid out by Jesus. Since Catholics believe in Jesus the pope is the the highest authority in church matters that everyone else is wrong. Keep standing up to truth because guess what. You are right. Good for you

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