July 31, 2012
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Early this week an Evangelical Christian young man who has always appeared to profess faith in Christ alone (and had preached that salvation is by Faith alone, in Christ alone, by Grace alone and by Scripture alone to the Glory of God alone) dropped a note to his local congregation and fellowship of believers. The message said he was no longer going to walk with them and he had come to a place where he wanted to go back to Roman Catholicism. It is always a sad thing when we see a falling away of supposed believers. It’s sadder when we see apostasy. I may have covered Apostasy in some earlier posts but today we will look at Roman Catholicism. What are the errors of Roman Catholicism? Why should one be extremely cautious of her allure?
A key distinction between Catholics and Christians is the view of the Bible. Catholics view the Bible as having equal authority with the Church and tradition. Christians view the Bible as the supreme authority for faith and practice. The question is, how does the Bible present itself? 2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” Scripture, of itself, is sufficient for the Christian to be thoroughly equipped for every good work. This text tells us that Scripture is not “just the beginning,” or “just the basics,” or the “foundation for a more complete church tradition.” On the contrary, Scripture is perfectly and fully sufficient for everything in the Christian life. Scripture can teach us, rebuke us, correct us, train us, and equip us. Bible Christians do not deny the value of church tradition. Rather, Christians uphold that for a church tradition to be valid, it must be based on the clear teaching of Scripture, and must be in full agreement with Scripture. Catholic friend, study the Word of God for yourself. In God’s Word you will find God’s description of, and intention for, His Church. 2 Timothy 2:15 declares, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.”
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