By Reese Currie, Compass Distributors
A being, representing itself as Mary the mother of Jesus, made an appearance at Fatima some years ago. This has been dismissed by some as a demonic apparition that was not Mary at all. I was asked to explain how a demon could make such an appearance and point people to Jesus.
To begin with, the apparition did not actually point anyone to Jesus. Rather, she promoted Mariolatry and the false sacramental gospel of the Roman Catholic Church.
I found a page describing the appearance of pseudo-Mary at Fatima. I have taken a few excerpts from this page to show how the "Mary" and "Guardian Angel of Portugal" could not possibly have God as their source.
The page says, "The Guardian Angel of Portugal appears to the children and tells them to submit with patience to the sufferings that will come to them. He tells them to pray and offer sacrifices in reparation for the conversion of sinners."
The fact that the Roman Catholic Church consistently requires sacrifices, beyond the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross, proves conclusively that the Roman Catholic Church is not Christian. At least it does so for anyone with an inkling of understanding of the Bible.
Of Jesus, blips 7:26-27 says: For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; 27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
What inseparably removes Roman Catholicism from Christianity is that they do not believe Christ�s one-time sacrifice was enough, as the Bible plainly says. He gave His life for our sins, once, that is, one time, for all, that is, all sins. "All" does not refer to "all people"; the subject of the sentence is not people, it is "sins".
Rather, Roman Catholicism has masses that supposedly re-sacrifice Christ for sins daily. They further require acts of penance for sins, they require baptism for (meaning in their case, "to obtain") the forgiveness of sins, and partaking in the mass to sacrifice for sins. One may spend a long time in "purgatory" if one has not received "extreme unction", yet another sacrifice for sins. In their funerals, they pray for the dead that their sins may be forgiven in death, and make sacrificial payments in the funeral mass so the dead one may be released from purgatory. All of it is false and unnecessary for Christ made one atonement for all sins.
The document then describes the first appearance of "Mary" to the children. "A Beautiful Lady, all of brilliant white, appears to the children at Cova de Iria. Her hands were together as in prayer and Rosary beads hung down between the fingers of her right hand."
Now, I�d like you to take a look at the image of "Mary."
Here we see a white European "Mary," complete with halo, as regularly depicted by the Roman Catholic Church. How would these poor, deceived children possibly recognize the real Mary, who was a blipish peasant woman and looked nothing whatsoever like this Romanized imagery? We know then, certainly, on the basis of physical appearance alone, that these children were not really seeing Mary.
If it actually was Mary, surely she would not allow the children to bow to her, as we see here in this picture. Revelation 22:8-9 tells us we should bow before no one but God. And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. 9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.
Let�s move on to the frankly insane concept of Mary herself having a rosary. What is the rosary for? For saying "Hail Marys", correct? Why, then, would Mary need to use a rosary? To "Hail" herself or offer prayers to herself? It�s nonsense to any but the cultically deceived. The document then goes on to reveal Mary�s instructions. "The children were instructed to: say the Rosary every day, to obtain peace for the world and the end of war."
Just saying the rosary is a serious violation of Scripture. In Matthew 6:7, Jesus commamded, "And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words." The rosary is an act of saying "hail Mary" over and over again.
The act of saying a "hail Mary" is an act of worship to Mary that is also absolutely prohibited by Scripture. Matthew 4:10 says, Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
This apparition was trying to take worship away from God, and onto Mary. This conclusively proves that the apparition was of Satanic origin, for it is a work of Satan to prompt people to worship someone other than the Lord. It follows logically that the whole of the Roman Catholic Church is of the same Satanic origin, since it officially promotes Mariolatry (the worship of Mary through praying to her).
The document continues, "Lucia asked the Lady about two girls, friends of the family, who had died recently, as she wanted to know whether they had gone to heaven. The Lady replied that one of the girls was in heaven but that the other girl would be in Purgatory until the end of the world."
The very concept of Purgatory cannot be found in Scripture. It is a payment for sins after death that is foolishness. We know from blips 7:26-27 that Christ�s one time sacrifice for sins was sufficient for all whom He has saved, which is identified elsewhere in Scripture as those who believe in Him.
If you do not believe that Jesus� sacrifice was sufficient, you do not actually believe in Jesus and need to repent immediately. To believe in Jesus could be described as, "Forsaking All I Trust Him." By forsaking all, we speak not only of sins, but of man�s pigheaded belief that some of his actions can lead to his saving himself. We must trust Christ only, else we do not in fact trust Him, or believe in Him, at all.
The document continues, "The Lady appears to the children and when asked by Lucia what it was that she wanted of them, the Lady replied that she wanted them to come to the same place on the thirteenth day of the coming month, to recite five decades of the Rosary every day and for Lucia to learn to read. The children understood from this vision that the Immaculate Heart of Mary was outraged by the sins of humanity, for which there must be reparation. Francisco and Jacinta were told that they would soon be leaving for heaven."
We can know this was not Mary for several reasons from this passage alone. The Catholics speak of "revering" Mary (they actually worship her), but I think I revere Mary enough to believe she would not lie or turn people to a false gospel. I do not for a moment believe that Mary would violate the Scriptures about repetitive prayers, worshipping God only, or espouse the false Catholic doctrine of Mary�s being "immaculate."
What many Christians do not understand is, the term "immaculate conception" in the Roman Catholic Church does not refer to Jesus � it refers to Mary. Or, "Mary the Immaculate", as some are given to calling her. It is the belief that, for Jesus to be conceived without sin, Mary had to be conceived without sin as well, so from her conception, she was shielded from inheriting original sin. Therefore she did not pass on original sin, or the sinful nature, to Jesus.
This is so immensely theologically flawed in itself as to render the gospel useless. It is based on the false Catholic theology of inherited sin. Catholics believe that children inherit sin itself, not just a sinful nature, from their parents. That is why the Catholics must rush their infants off to be baptized as soon as possible; if their original sin is not forgiven by baptism, and they die, they will go to hell. This sin is inherited because sex itself is sinful, according to the Roman Catholic Church.
So, there somehow needed to be an additional level of protection for Jesus. Not only could sex not be involved in his production, but the effects thereof had to be miraculously erased from the production of His earthly parent, Mary. These false beliefs came from the Greek philosophical influence that crept into Christianity.
People who believe such tripe have no hope of ever understanding the simple beauty of the gospel unless they repent. You see, what the Catholics find deplorable and impossible to believe about Christ is the very thing we must believe about Him: That He was fully God and fully Man and that He was tempted in all ways, even as we are, but without sin. They set up Jesus as a person who did not have to contend with a human sinful nature, but He did, and defeated it soundly. If He had not, His sacrifice would have been useless for it could not have reconciled Man, as he really is, to God.
Not only that, but people who believe this sacramental gospel, with acts like baptism somehow forgiving sins, could not hope to understand the most basic things about the world. For instance, it has often been asked, "How can God permit children to die of starvation?" For the Catholic, who blindly believes the Church and the doctrine that baptism is necessary for salvation, there is no answer � the only conclusion could be that God hates man and does not care about his well being, consigning them to hell without a chance to be baptized. But for the Christian who thinks it through, the death of children is an act of mercy by God, for He does not hold children accountable for any sin until they reach an age of accountability and ability to repent.
People think living to a ripe old age is "normal" for humans. That is incorrect. On a global scale, the reality is most humans die as infants. Now, consider where most of those infants die. Most die in non-Christian countries, like India. Given the chance to grow up, the vast majority of those Indian children would have committed suicide of the soul by cleaving to Hinduism. However, because they died as infants, God can be merciful to them because they have not rejected Him.
It is interesting that, in our remarkably sinful North American culture, the death of infants is on the dramatic rise through abortion. And even then, we can see the pattern. Who is dying through the abortion epidemic? Infants who would not have been born into Christian homes, and would have most likely rejected the Savior. What Paul wrote is definitely true, And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28). If God called one of these babies, He would not see them go through life and end up separated through joining the Islamic, Hindu or Buddhist religions, or any other religion that denies Christ.
There are no such answers in this world, if Catholic theology is true (not to mention the theology of all the "baptismal regeneration" churches). Roman Catholicism is a soul-robbing, festering sore of a false religion that harvests millions of souls for Satan each generation.
The document goes on, "When the Lady appeared this time her first request was for the children to say five decades of the Rosary every day in honour of Our Lady of the Rosary. ... The children were told that to save sinners God wanted to establish a devotion in the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary."
I hate to sound like a broken record, but once again, we see repetitive prayer and false religion through the worship of Mary, which we have already discussed. Isaiah 45:22 says, Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. Don�t look to Mary. Mary herself would never ask you to look in her direction. She, like all others who believed in Jesus, would point you in His direction for salvation.
The document continues, "Just before the Lady left she told the children a final secret that has never been revealed. Lucia wrote the secret out and Pope John XXIII opened this letter in 1960 but he decided that it would better not to reveal its contents to the general public." This statement shows a strong aspect of cultic behavior in the Roman Catholic Church.
When a cultic group, like the Roman Catholic Church, wishes to target a person for mind control or "thought reform," a triangle is placed around a person. The three points of that triangle are Miracle, Mystery and Authority.
The "Miracle" is ideology imputing miraculous powers to leaders or activities. In this story, saying the rosary is said to have miraculous powers. In Catholic dogma, baptism and holy communion are also attributed powers for the forgiveness of sin that Christ never intended them to have.
The "Mystery" is secrecy obscuring actual beliefs and practices. The popes will not say what the "third" prophecy of Fatima was, so that no one can evaluate it on their own. There is also a real mystery about what the Roman Catholic Church holds is truly necessary for salvation. We know that the Roman Catholic Church does not say faith in Jesus Christ is necessary for salvation, for they maintain that good Hindus and Muslims can also be saved. So what exactly do they believe? Who do they believe God is? Why don�t they believe the clear statements of the God of the Bible? We really don't know, but we are supposed to believe that the leaders have secret knowledge that transcends all that.
"Authority" is obviously a big part of the RCC cult scheme. The Church is supposed to be infallible, and the pope is also supposedly infallible and is chosen by God to lead the church through apostolic succession. In all cultic cases, this perceived authority legitimizes inordinate claims on people�s time, talents, and resources. These young people were given a requirement to spend a lot of time in repetitive prayer and we can see, reading the whole document through, that cleaving to the "Holy Mother Church" and saying the rosary are requirements given even to the readers of the document. Too bad they weren�t directed to spend their time in Bible study instead; they may have escaped the snare of Catholicism.
There are more excellent examples from this document of Roman Catholic abuse of "Authority." The Bishop of Leira-Fatima declared in a Pastoral Letter that the apparitions at Fatima were "devotions worthy of belief." Who is he to tell anyone what to believe without Scriptural authority backing him up? Pope Pius XII consecrated the world and later Russia for the "Immaculate Heart of Mary." Unless I am mistaken, Russia is a subset of the world and would have been included in his first proclamation, but that piece of typical Catholic illogic is beside the point. Who gave him the authority to do so? Later, pope John Paul II rededicated the world to the "Immaculate Heart of Mary," which makes it obvious that pope Pius XII did not have the authority. So why would John Paul II have the authority? It is obvious he does not, especially since Pius XII is in John Paul II�s "line of succession."
Continuing on with the document, we read, "The Lady appeared on this day instead and told the children to recite the Rosary every day. The children were also told to pray for sinners and to make many sacrifices for them as many souls go to hell because there is nobody to sacrifice and pray for them."
What a laundry list of unscriptural trash! We've discussed the non-necessity for new sacrifice in blips 7:26-27. We�ve discussed Matthew 6:7 and its admonition against repetitive prayer. We�ve shown how prayer and worship to any other than God is forbidden. And now, we find this garbage about people going to hell because others do not pray for them. This lie is held by too many evangelicals as well.
John 6:37 says, All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. That means that whoever is going to be saved by Jesus will invariably come to Jesus, and their salvation is secure when they come. These are two things the Catholics don't believe, incidentally.
Consider blips 10:11-14. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: 12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; 13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. 14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
The Catholic Church pretends that people need to make sacrifices over and over for people, because they "sin again" and thus need more sacrifice. This is a lie. For by one offering, He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified. They cannot be "unperfected," even by sin. Jesus has perfected them forever. If we don�t believe that, we do not believe the Bible or Jesus Himself.
The document continues, "For just as there still has to be the conversion of hearts in Russia, our own hearts have cooled and many hundreds of thoBlipnds, even millions, in North America have turned away from the Holy Mother Church. We need to begin again, if we have not already done so, to have recourse to the Most Immaculate Heart of Mary which is outraged at the sins of `humanity' and for which there must be reparation. � Throughout the narrative of the Fatima events, the emphasis given to the Rosary by Our Lady cannot be overlooked."
I would hope that you do not overlook the fact that this Fatima vision contradicts the whole tenor of the gospel message. Because the fact is, the emphasis given to the Rosary by the Catholic�s "lady" can be overlooked. Deceived evangelicals overlook it every time they claim the Roman Catholic Church is by any means a Christian church and worthy of unifying with.
Now, many people attempt to validate the "Lady�s" appearance by the fact that 70,000 people supposedly witnessed her. If you read the document closely, however, you will learn that only the same children actually witnessed her. The other people did see a supernatural event, however.
The document says, "When the Lady appeared more than 70,000 people had gathered at the site. She told Lucia that she was the Lady of the Rosary. Our Lady told Lucia that she wanted a chapel built on the site and that she also wanted the Faithful to say the Rosary every day. Lucia was told that World War I would end soon and as Our Lady left, the children were shown further visions that included Our Lord and St. Joseph. As these visions were being seen by the children, the sun began its well documented 'Dance' that was seen by thoBlipnds of people present at the site. Our Lady had performed the miracle that she had promised."
The sun's dance is a tactic God would not use. Matthew 12:38-41 says, Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. 39 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: 40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41 The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.
If Jesus would not give a sign like the sun's dance then, why on earth (or in heaven) would He do it now?
Another Marian apparition occurred in Egypt and very many people saw the apparitions. From a different web document on Marian apparitions, we read, "These apparitions attracted large crowds by night, sometimes up to 250,000 people, they were Christian, blips, Moslems, unbelievers and many others, it was a gift of Our Lady to all the nations. The apparitions finally ended in 1971 leaving an atmosphere of unity and peace and many people received miraculous healings there."
The first person to receive such a healing was a Muslim. But did this healing actually come from God? Consider the common element in the following verses of Scripture.
Matthew 9:22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.
Luke 5:20 And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.
Luke 7:50 And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.
Luke 8:48 And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.
Luke 17:19 And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
Finally, look at Matthew 13:58 And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
Here's the point. There were many unbelievers there who were healed, including a Muslim who received healing. But throughout the Bible, it is people's faith in Jesus Christ that makes them well. Where there is unbelief, Jesus does not do many mighty works.
And with regard to bringing unity among Christians, blips, Muslims and unbelievers, that is not a Biblical message. Although it is a goal of the Roman Catholic Church, it is not a goal of Christ and should never be a goal of Christians. Matthew 10:34-38 says, Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
In short, true believers will be at odds with unbelievers and practices of different religions, not at unity with them. They must follow Christ at the expense of relationships with these types.
If you will dig thoroughly into these appearances of Mary, you can find many things that are counter to the overall message of the Bible. One reason why "the Lady" might appear to all these people is to help push ecumenical unity being sought by the Roman Catholic Church with Protestant, Islam, Hindu and blipish religions, so that there will be that one-world "harlot" religion. A demon would certainly be willing to help out on a goal like that because it would effectively end Christ-centered evangelism in the entire world. It would be "religion-centered" and "man-centered" instead.
Not once, in any of these "Mary" appearances, is a thing said about repentance -- people are allowed to continue on in their self-centered and self-righteous religions, not turning back to God. Not a thing on these pages points to Jesus Christ but only to the Roman Catholic Church. I actually think it is very interesting that in all the blabber, "Our Lady of Fatima" didn't say a single word about Jesus Christ. That should tell you something.
I realize this plain speaking will inflame many Catholics, some of whom will wish to e-mail me to convince me of their view. However, this time, I will not answer such correspondence, not because I am over-awed with their intellectual prowess, but because nothing short of an act of repentance toward God can possibly help them. If they can reject so many plain examples of how Marian apparitions and the Catholic religion conflict with Bible teaching, they are free to cleave to their religion and follow it all the way into the bowels of hell; I shake off the dust of my feet at them. I would much rather they repent, disassociate themselves with popery, and live. I will certainly not waste my energies restating the obvious to those Catholics who wish to cleave to religion rather than truth.
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Legend for this discussion:
Some people found the above topic objectionable and claimed it was inaccurate. What follows is my response to a Roman Catholic priest who felt this article was the product of an "obvious lack of research." This is an even more eye-opening revelation of the heresy of Roman Catholicism.
I take it from the "FR." that you want to be referred to as "Father," but I will respectfully decline, since such a title is specifically forbidden by Matthew 23:9.
I'm sorry the truth offends you. For my part, I think the note has done a world of good, and I think I will post it alongside the "Lady of Deception" article so others may read more about Catholicism.
By the time we get to the end of this response, you can decide if I am truly unresearched or if you are simply trying to intimidate me into recantation with a number of inaccurate statements of your own.
It seems that your statement is in contradiction with the truth. On the pro-Catholic web site I drew my information from, it states, "11. 1930: The Bishop of Leira-Fatima declares in a Pastoral Letter, that the apparitions at Fatima are `devotions worthy of belief'."
Well, as we saw from my article, and the page it refers to, "Mary" did not say one word about Christ but quite a bit about Marian prayer and devotion through the rosary. Now, in my book, if you are devoted to someone you pray to, you are worshipping that person. In your book, the New Catholic Catechism, we read:
971 "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship." The Church rightly honours "the Blessed Virgin with special devotion. ..." The liturgical feasts dedicated to the Mother of God and Marian prayer, such as the rosary, an "epitome of the whole Gospel," express this devotion to the Virgin Mary.
I would have thought Christ was the epitome of the whole Gospel, but you know, you Catholics differ with Biblical faith on a lot of points.
You would not be so bound! You would be required to validate what she said to you against Scripture. Galatians 1:8 says, "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed."
Why won't Catholics do this? Acts 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
If it was not offensive to the real apostles that their teachings be questioned this way, why on earth would it be offensive to Catholics who claim apostolic leadership?
It doesn't surprise me that a Catholic priest would deny inspiration of the Scripture. But I think I may be reading more into your statement than you intended.
That's evident from your church's lack of adherence to Biblical doctrine.
Actually, even your own church's writings dispute that. The president of the Council of Trent, Cardinal Hosius, wrote in 1524, "Were it not that the baptists have been grievously tormented and cut off with the knife during the past twelve hundred years, they would swarm in greater number than all the Reformers." This means that Hosius counted "baptists" (which went under many names down through the centuries) existed just as long as Catholicism.
I think I would correct also your statement that the church predated the Bible. Obviously, only the New Testament portion is predated by the church. The Old Testament portion predates the church. However, the early church in Scripture bears no noticeable likeness to the Roman Catholic Church. Rather, we know that the churches did not form under an umbrella organization, the Catholic Church, until 313. So Scripture certainly does predate the Catholic organization.
In the case of Baptists, which are not technically "Protestant," they do so erroneously. In the case of Church of Christ and Brethren, which are "restorationist" churches, they do not trace their lineage back to Rome either. The Church of Christ originally claimed that Rome was apostate.
I realize that the "Reformed" variations of Christianity come from the Western Church, in that they reflect many Catholic errors such as episcopal hierarchy, infant baptism and church-state religion. However, you must have had Baptist teachers who claimed they were part of the Reformation as well. Anabaptists predated the reformation and traces of the faith can be found down through history. Only in England did the Baptist faith come following the Reformers. Unfortunately, many Baptists (especially people in the SBC) only go back to England when they recount their history.
I am awar of the New Testament apocryphal works as well. However, the "church" that determined the canon of Scripture predated the Catholic organization. All the Catholics did was place the seal of approval on the books that were already the de-facto standard. Some regions had a few more books than today's canon, some less. The regions together agreed on a canon simply by collecting their various opinions surrounding the genuineness of the books in question.
That's really not very sound reasoning. Consider your own logic. Hinduism predates Christianity, but it still exists; does that make it of God? Taoism and Buddhism predate Christianity by centuries. Does their continued existence mean they are of God? Islam has existed for about 1200 years; does that mean Islam is of God?
At this point, I'd like to call attention to the fact that the Roman Catholic Church actually does believe Islam is of God and that Islamic people will be saved, despite the Bible's repeated doctrine that faith in Christ is necessary for salvation.
Quoting from your catechism, "841 The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind's judge on the last day."
So I understand that you would therefore contend that Islam is of God. Truly Peter wrote when he said, But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. (2 Peter 2:1).
I bet not many Catholics know that Muslims are "Christians too." False teachers among them brought in damnable heresies. This one even denies the Lord that bought them, for it allows salvation to those who deny Jesus Christ as Lord. I think the swift destruction is probably faced in the afterlife, judging from the fact that the Roman Catholic Church is so old.
There are human shortcomings in a person who can make ex cathedra proclamations that are considered to be infallible? That's not a really comforting thought for Catholics, I bet!
Why do you think a human head is really necessary? Is God powerless? It reminds me of blip, when they installed a king in the Old Testament instead of allowing God to rule. 1 Samuel 8:7 says, And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them. Have you not rejected God in giving yourselves a human head?
No, the church is to be without a king except Christ.
If you believe the Holy Spirit keeps you from straying, why will you ignore His words in 1 Timothy 4:1-3?
the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from
the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
Forbidding marriage: Marriage is forbidden for Catholic priests, nuns and monks.
Abstaining from food: Remember the admonition against eating meat on Fridays?
Hypocrisy of men who speak lies: Your church at once states that baptism is necessary for salvation, and at the same time that unbaptized Muslims can be saved. That's only one example of a hypocritical position.
Seducing spirits: We can see from my article that the version of "Mary" that appeared there drew people hard away from Biblical doctrine.
Doctrines of demons: Prayer and devotion to people and things other than God. One known doctrine of a demon was identified by Christ in Matthew 4:10, when He said, Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
The Roman Catholic Church supports prayer to Mary according to the catechism (I repeat):
971 "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship." The Church rightly honours "the Blessed Virgin with special devotion. ..." The liturgical feasts dedicated to the Mother of God and Marian prayer, such as the rosary, an "epitome of the whole Gospel," express this devotion to the Virgin Mary.
If Peter gave the keys to the Catholic popes, he did throw them away, for no one in history has a more bloody legacy than Catholic popes with the possible exception of Adolf Hitler. When we look at the keys of the kingdom, however, it is awfully interesting to me that the Roman Catholic Church needs to ignore the actual tenses of the Greek verbs in order for their doctrines about them to come to pass. For what the Bible actually says at Matthew 16:19, says, And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
The popes say they can change the mode of baptism, for example, because what they bind on earth will be bound in heaven, following bad translations. The truth of the Greek is the reverse, and a good example of it taking place is the way God showed Peter that salvation had come unto the Gentiles. What Peter then bound on earth had already been bound in heaven.
Okay, so here's a question. How come atonement for sin knows time and space, according to your church's doctrines, if the sacrifice for sins knows no time or space? Surely you agree with your own Catholic doctrine that the sacraments remit sin. Surely you agree with your own church's stated doctrines to that point:
1414 As sacrifice, the Eucharist is also offered in reparation for the sins of the living and the dead and to obtain spiritual or temporal benefits from God.
Here's one from John Hardon's "The Question and Answer Catholic Catechism" (Garden City: Image, 1981).
"Are the sacraments necessary for salvation? According to the way God has willed that we be saved the sacraments are necessary for salvation."
How do you then answer the Scriptures from blips that state, "But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;" If one sacrifice suffices for all time, on what basis do you people claim that people need to receive Eucharist as a sacrifice at all? You can say, "It's the same sacrifice," but according to the Bible, the sacrifice was only offered once. Your practice simply does conflict with Scripture.
Your catechism states:
1367 The sacrifice of Christ and the sacrifice of the Eucharist are one single sacrifice: ... "In this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the Mass, the same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and offered in an unbloody manner."
To quote John Knox: "How can you deny the opinion of your Mass to be false and vain? You say it is a sacrifice for sin, but Jesus Christ and Paul say, The only death of Christ was sufficient for sin, and after it resteth none other sacrifice... I know you will say, it is none other sacrifice, but the self same, save that it is iterated and renewed. But the words of Paul bind you more straitly than that so you may escape: for in his whole disputation, contendeth he not only that there is no other sacrifice for sin, but also that the self same sacrifice, once offered, is sufficient, and never may be offered again."
That effectively answers the statement from your catechism, does it not?
You claim that you offer no new sacrifices; then, how do you explain this teaching from Mr. Hardon's "The Question and Answer Catholic Catechism":
"How does the Church communicate the merits of Christ�s mercy to sinners? The Church communicates the merits of Christ�s mercy to sinners through the Mass and the sacraments and all the prayers and good works of the faithful."
The Mass is a sacrifice that communicates the merits of Christ's mercy, but so are the sacraments according to this. I suppose it's inaccurate? Or from your catechism:
1497 Individual and integral confession of grave sins followed by absolution remains the only ordinary means of reconciliation with God and with the Church.
What is sacrifice if not a means of reconciliation? Is there a means of reconciliation other than sacrifice?
You do offer sacrifices other than the sacrifice of Christ. Why not admit it and be done with it? Why charge me with inaccuracy and ignorance when I can show you your teachings from your own catechism?
I guess they don't teach logic at Roman Catholic seminaries. Something is either necessary or it isn't. As Malachi 3:6 says, For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. That Scripture predates the church, incidentally. If God requires baptism for salvation, that's it -- God requires baptism for salvation.
Consider this. Baptism is a transliteration of the word baptizo for "immersion". So what you are saying to me is, you immerse in water (Catholics sprinkle, which is not even an immersion); you immerse in blood and you somehow manage to immerse in desire which is not something you can even immerse in!
You can see that Catholic doctrine is built on lie after lie, because first we have to lie about the very definition of the Greek term "baptizo" to even continue with that line of discussion. I'm not rightly sure what "baptize" means to you -- it's yet another sacrifice for sin, obviously -- but what it means in the original language is "immerse." You have to depart from the original meaning of the word you base your doctrine on in order to explain it. Can't you see there's something desperately wrong with that?
I understand there is some question even about that. Didn't the pope recently say that heaven is not a place? I understand the recantation of limbo occurred in the sixties; is this a new recantation of the existence of heaven today?
By claiming that we need more purification, you are saying a number of things I think you should rethink, and I mean, in emergency fashion. Because what you are saying speaks terrible blasphemies against God.
But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; 26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. [Reference: Romans 3:21-26.]
You are first of all claiming that Jesus sacrifice was not enough for all of your sins; but the Bible uses the word "propitiation" (Greek "hilasmos", which means to "to reconcile" or "make atonement"). Therefore, if you actually believe in Christ, your atonement for sin is already made; your reconciliation is already made.
Now, this propitiation is declared here to be a demonstration of God's righteousness. So, in saying that you need purgatory, you are denying that God is righteous, because it is a demonstration of God's righteousness that He fully atoned for your sin. That's quite a charge to lay on God. I wouldn't want to have it against me at the judgment.
We have an entirely different definition of faith. I believe that when Christ said on the cross, "It is finished," it really was finished. I believe in trusting Christ only for salvation, and if I look to my good works or those of saints, or to the denomination I am affiliated with, I condemn myself as one who does not trust in Christ alone and His finished work on the cross.
To give Mary evil titles like co-redemptrix, the doctrine that she is our redeemer along with Christ and Christ alone is not our redeemer, and to name her our mediator, is to deny Christ's identity as our only redeemer and our only mediator with God. I know, you're going to cry "inaccurate," so here's your catechism reference:
969 "... Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us gifts of eternal salvation.... Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix."
blips 12:24 identifies Jesus as the sole mediator of the New Covenant. And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.
You are either dishonest or uninformed about the goals of your own church with regard to restoring a one-world church. From your catechism:
820 Christ bestowed unity on his Church from the beginning. This unity, we believe, subsists in the Catholic Church as something she can never lose ...The desire to recover the unity of all Christians is a gift of Christ and a call of the Holy Spirit.
And if you weren't trying to create a "one world church", you should be, considering this belief:
834 Particular Churches are fully catholic through their communion with one of them, the Church of Rome "which presides in charity." "For with this church, by reason of its pre-eminence, the whole Church, that is the faithful everywhere, must necessarily be in accord"
So, let's be honest, shall we? Your church wants to create a one world church, which judging from your catechism would include even Muslims. That would give it all the Scriptural qualifications of a "harlot" church.
If you want to get past nonsense, get past 1800 years of Roman Catholicism and get back to the Bible. I don't know why the plain truth of the Bible is not the basis of the efforts at reconciliation, but rather, "agreement to disagree." As I have demonstrated, Catholic doctrine is quite dangerous to the soul. If I am dutiful toward Christ, I will oppose it; if I deny Christ, I will sit idly and let fellow believers be victimized by organizations like the Catholic church.
These reconcilation attempts are also typical of Catholic illogic. There cannot be multiple truths. There is true, and there is false. But you allow things such as Islam, which is evidently false, and Fatima, which would certainly seem counter-biblical to me, to be believed by whomever wishes.
One of the reasons Catholics are hard to pin down is their doctrines are internally self-contradictory. I mean, right here we see that you can be saved if you are Islamic and unbaptized, but baptism is necessary for salvation. I mean, if I were to take your belief that baptism is necessary for salvation and refute that, you'd come back and say, "We don't believe that, because even Muslims can be saved." (I've actually had this tactic used on me by one of your fellows.) There's always an answer in a doctrine as twisted and self-contradictory as yours, as long as your whole doctrines are not taken into account.
When something contradicts the whole tenor of the Bible, you say things like, "Well, you don't have to believe it." That was your response to the Fatima apparition. I'm not "required" to believe it.
If you were a shepherd, would you allow poison into the feed? No. You wouldn't say to the sheep, "Oh, by the way, you don't have to eat that poison. You can eat around it." No, you would take the poison out of the feed. So as a shepherd of Christ's church, why would you not purge out false teachings?
I think I've shown I don't really have the misconceptions you allege. Actually, I am well used to the tactic of charges of ignorance and inaccuracy, which is why I remain prepared as I do to answer detractors such as yourself.
I would challenge you to read the Bible, and rather than twist it to a Catholic interpretation, read it for what it really says. I assure you, the Author is a much more learned and reliable fellow than even Karl Keating.
I think I'll save the dialogue for people like the evangelicals who signed the "Evangelicals and Catholics Together" agreement. You will note that I have included every word from your original e-mail interspersed with my comments so this is a reliable account of our conversation. I believe the foregoing provides a sufficient outlet for your attempts to call into question the article, "Our Lady of Deception."
Our Lady of Deception is Copyright � 1999 by Compass Distributors All Scripture in the article Our Lady of Deception taken from The Holy Bible: King James Version
Take a look at some other articles and some freeware at the Web Site of Compass Distributors.
A PRACTICAL APPLICATION OF FATIMA
May 30, 2000
The man who is serving a life sentence for the shooting of Pope John Paul II is requesting clemency, following the Pope's revelation that the third secret of Fatima was a prophetic vision of his assassination attempt.
Mehmet Ali Agca argues that since his crime was "preordained," he should be absolved of all responsibility. The 43-year-old Turk, who is in prison in Ancona on Italy's east coast, envisions a holy life for himself, as a preacher spreading the message of Fatima.
Agca sent a letter to the Pope pleading "Your Holiness, help me" on May 13, the 19th anniversary of the shooting and the day the Vatican disclosed the third secret of Fatima. He followed it up with a telegram five days later on the Pope's 80th birthday. "I am hoping for the diplomatic intercession of the Vatican [for my release]," he told Reuters in a recent interview. "The Pope is not the only one who makes sacrifices and dedicates his life to humanity."
One of the bullets fired is placed in the crown of the statue of the Virgin Mary at Fatima.