:: Saturday, August 14, 2004 ::
One Does Not Thump The Book Of G'Quan
I recieved a reply from LeonPeon last night. Because I didn't feel like unpacking my bible from my college stuff (as well as other assorted literature) I waited until tonight to address it.
First off, I would like to ease your mind by letting you know that I am not trying a "conversion thing." I just like to converse about the difference between your religion and my faith. I admit that I was not properly trained in the Catholic religion, but I still know all little something about it. I agree with you that Catholics are, in fact, Christians. That always bothered me also when people would imply that if you are Catholic, you are not Christian. I know many Catholics who are Christian. I believe you statement about not being sure about your eternal condition, (going to Heaven or Hell when you die) is risky because it seems like you are leaving it up to good works and chance. We can be assured of our place in Heaven. Ephesians 1:13-14 says, "In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation-having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God's own possession, to the praise of His glory." John 5: 24 says, "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life." John 10: 28 says, "and I give eternal life to them, and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand." There are 3 good verses that promise us salvation and eternal life. There are many more all throughout the Bible. I have a copy of the (forgive my spelling here) Catechism, I am currently looking for it. In response to purgatory, we don' t need to pay the price for our sins in purgatory, because Christ already did that on the cross. Hebrews 1: 3 says, "And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high;" Also 1 John 2:2 says, " and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world." Let me clarify in case you don't know what propitiation means ( I didn't until about 2 months ago) Propitiation means satisfying. So that means that Christ is sufficient for the atonement of our sins. In closing, I would like to pose a question to you. What are your thoughts on baptism? I enjoy these discussions, but please don't think I'm trying to cram my beliefs down your throat.
1 love, 1 God, 1 way
A Slave of Christ
THUMP. THUMP. THUMP.
Ewww, that must be painful. Someone get this woman's bible a cold pack - maybe that'll keep the swelling down in the morning. The Good News really shouldn't be abused like that...
Anyhow, on a more serious note, you're throwing bible verses at me without using them in an arguement to prove anything. And arguement you need - not one of your verses directly proves your points that a)salvation is an immediate change rather than a long process and b)Purgatory does not exist and isn't necessary.
Also, I really don't like to get bible verses involved in discussions with fundamentalists, for one really good reason: fundies tend to forget that the original versions of the Old and New Testaments weren't written in English. While this may seem a simple matter of translation, the problem is that fundamentalists tend to get hung up on precise wordings of their own translation and forget that other people reading other translations of the same bible read different things. Looking at my mother's comparative bible, it looks like you're using the New American Standard translation, which is a strict word-for-word translation that, without an extensive knowledge of ancient Greek and English grammar, can become quite convoluted. I, myself, use and prefer the Revised New American tranlation, which is a slightly less strict word-for-word translation that more closely follows common English grammar and is a bit easier to read. To drive my point home, I include the RNAB translations of the same passages.
Ephesians 1:13-14 "In him you also, who have heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him, were sealed with the promised holy Spirit, which is the first installment of our inheritance toward redemption as God's possession, to the praise of his glory."
When read this way, it appears more that being sealed with the Holy Spirit (which, for Catholics, occurs both in the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation) is the first step towards "redeption as God's posession," or salvation in the Catholic sense. As I am not a schollar in ancient Greek, I cannot say this for certain, though.
The NASB and RNAB translations of John 5:24 and 10:28 are nearly identical, so I won't type it out. However, since you tossed these into consideration, I would point out that by the first verse alone one could construe that Christ's ressurection was not necessary for the gift of eternal life. You and I both know that this is not true, but it illustrates the danger of singling out one or two verses to make major theological decisions upon. The second verse, taken alone, suggests that once one is given eternal life, it will never be taken away. It does not address when it is granted or attained.
Hebrews 1:3 "who is the refulgence of his [God's] glory, the very imprint of his being, and who sustains all things by his mighty word. When he had accomplished purification from sins, he took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high,"
This is part of the opening of the epistle that describes the nature of the relationship between the Father and Son, and is intended as an investigation into the nature of Christ. The point of the letter itself is to instruct on the nature of Christ, not salvation. Yes, Christ's death did purify the world of its sins, just as his resurrection opens to us the path of eternal life. However, if we cling to our sins even after this redemption, and continue to sin further, does this not sully the surface which His sacrifice for us has cleaned? Catholicism, through the Eucharist, allows us to participate in this redemptive purification repeatedly, for those who choose it. This reflects the continual and unlimited aspect of Christ's sacrifice, as well as the fact that we, as sinners living in a sinful world, continually need to be redeemed.
The NASB and RNAB translations of 1 John 2:2 are nearly similar (with RNAB using "expiation" for "propitation") so I will not copy it here. However, I find it interesting that you chose this verse, noting those which preceed it. 1 John 1:7-10 says
If we say, "We are without sin," we decieve ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we acknoledge our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing. If we say "We have not sinned," we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
This section, to me, suggests that sins are only forgiven when we admit to them as sins. If we do not acknowledge them, the we chose our sins over God and so push Him out. Without God's help, our sins cannot be removed. Purgatory, in this light, is the place after death where all remaining sins, however small and minor, can be removed with God's help. If we do not admit to these sins, God's word, Christ, is not in us, and without Christ in us we cannot hope to enter into communion with God in heaven.
I still fail to see how not knowing about my state of salvation is risky. As long as I keep trying to (and do better at) walking in the light and living as Christ did, which just happens to be the point of Christian religion, and atone for my sins when I go astray, I should be all right. Since all I have to do for salvation is what I'm supposed to be doing anyway, I don't see this as risky at all.
Alrighty, the party line on Baptism. To quote the Nicean Creed: "We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins." This means that one baptism is good for the rest of your life. It washes away not only all one's previous sins, but also the original sin committed by Adam and Eve. Baptism, preferably, is done by immersion. However, such isn't usually an option and poured water (or some other liquid in extreme cases) is usually employed for the sacrament. The symbol necessary for the sacrament is a moving liquid, in keeping with the theme of cleansing. Catholics also only recognize tripartite baptisms, namely those in which the formula "I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." is used. Other forms of baptism without this formula, or without a moving liquid, are considered invalid. When being done by immersion, the naming of one of the three Persons is accompanied by the complete immersion of the person being baptised. In ancient times, this immersion would last up to the point of suffocation. This was to symbolize the person's death to sin and rebirth in Christ, taking advantage of both the life-sustaining and deadly aspects of water. Those who are already properly baptized do not need to be rebaptized when they join the Catholic faith, but instead only make a profession of faith.
That's a lot of stuff on baptism there, and I'm not currently in the mood to organize it better. Maybe I will later. As far as I know, that's all by the book Catholic, and I don't have any arguements with it.
For those regulars who haven't quit reading by now, brownie points will go out as usual to the first to identify the source of the title of this post.
:: The Squire 9:13 PM :: email this post :: ::