A Basic Expose’ of Catholicism Part 1

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Jean Damon’s basic expose’ of Catholicism, for those interested in knowing Jesus

Part 1

I’ve had a few discussions (mostly arguments) with Catholics over the last several years. Also, I notice the comments they make under articles and videos exposing Catholicism. I have determined that there are some common statements that they tend to make, and I thought it could be useful to address some of those, and at the same time give an overview of the history of Catholicism vs. the early church.

The greater percentage of Catholics were born into the religion-baptized in infancy, and taught Catholic doctrine throughout childhood. Usually their entire extended family are Catholics, and most likely also are Democrats. Catholics are taught that their religion is the only true religion, and anyone outside of the Catholic Church is going to hell. This, of course, is the position of many other religions as well.

I must hasten to add that there are a lot of Catholics that are saved or born-again, and do actually love Jesus and are reading their bible. My contention, though, is that the majority are never told about our need to be born again, or to follow Jesus directly, or to become intimately familiar with the bible.

The typical reaction and statement they make, when responding to expose’ articles, is that the writer is a “Catholic-hater”, or Catholic-basher”. However, usually, it’s quite the opposite. Believers in Jesus, who are trying to expose this religion, are people that really care about the souls of their fellow citizens, and thus (as I am doing) go through a lot of trouble, time, and effort to make their presentations, hoping that someone out there is questioning their religion, and has been interested in knowing Jesus, and is willing to actually hear what is being said. Such was the case with me; at age 25, I realized that I was thoroughly disillusioned with my religion, and had become more and more interested in Jesus. Though I had never been taught about being born-again, God in His faithfulness, knowing my heart, led me to someone that preached the gospel to me and “led me to the Lord”. Afterward, I was led to a loving group of believers, who baptized me in the river, and I joined their church, and learned to read the bible thoroughly and under the Holy Spirit’s inspiration and direction. I am now 65, and continue to follow Jesus and be transformed into His likeness, little by little (2 Corinthians 3:18).

Therefore, I am hopeful that my article doesn’t appear to be hateful, but rather, helpful to those finding themselves somewhat hungry for God—so much so, that, like me, you are willing to take a risk in order to really find Him. To me, at the time, walking away from the Catholic Church felt like walking off a cliff, in terms of my soul’s salvation, but in my ignorance, I felt it was the only way to demonstrate to God that I was really looking for Him.   God said, in Jeremiah 29:33, “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” I think that might mean sticking your neck out a bit.

Note that I am referring to Catholicism as a religion. “Christianity” is also a religion, insofar as it’s really a system that was devised by men to organize their spiritual beliefs. Contrast that with being “in Christ”, or being in “The Church” or “The Body of Christ”, which simply involves having given your heart/life to Jesus, been born-again in Him, and intending to follow Him both through His word as well as through direction by His Holy Spirit, and consequently also coming into fellowship with other believers in Him, thus becoming part of His Body (I Corinthians 12:27:” Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”)

This brings me to another common statement by Catholics: Jesus is the one that started the Catholic Church, from the beginning. They believe that Catholicism is what was being practiced in the early church, and that it was the first, and true, church. These kinds of statements are what tell you that that person is not familiar at all with the bible; nor are they familiar with history-the history of how the Roman Catholic Church came about.

Unfortunately, this is where the rub first starts. Since most Catholics are unlearned in the gospels and the epistles, they can only be subjective in their arguments, and also, tend not to be much fazed by scriptures given to them that should inform them. The difficulty is that God’s word is only The Logos (the written word) until The Spirit makes it alive to us, thus causing belief in that word (a Rama word) and conversion in the heart. So, you cannot expect to just throw scriptures at them, but rather, try to inform.

So, for those wanting to be taught, a thorough reading of the book of Acts and then of as many of the letters of the apostles as possible would show them that the early church had very little, if anything, in common with the RCC (Roman Catholic Church). You learn that there was no one man that was “at the top”; the church was “ruled” by a council of the apostles and the elders, who would gather together to discuss church policy (slowly developing “Christianity”) and make decisions and speak for the church. In acts 1, you do find that Peter seems to be like he is the main leader, but eventually, as you go through the chapters, you find, such as in chapter 6, that it is the whole group of apostles that actually make the decisions and give directions. At times, James seems to rise up as a “more important” apostle, but by Acts 13, you can see that Paul is beginning to be elevated as a very prominent apostle, though he never was considered the guy “at the top”. To be sure, Peter is prominently featured in the first 10 or so chapters, but scripture shows that he was eventually assigned to lead the Jewish believers in Jerusalem, and unfortunately became somewhat influenced by their erroneous belief that they had to be circumcised and to follow Jewish laws even as Christians, to the point that Peter was confronted by Paul about it in Galatians 2 (where Paul recounts it).

Pick any number of general RCC practices, rules, etc, and you won’t find support for them in the Acts or in the epistles or even in the gospels. To be sure, scripture is always spoken during the mass, but generally it is not explained or expounded upon during the priest’s following sermon. The general practice is to teach them Catholic doctrine– elevating that over the bible itself; so how can Catholics really value the word of God the way it should be valued?

In the next section, I will tackle the cornerstone of the RCC-the idea of Peter’s being told by Jesus that he would the person on whom “Jesus would build His church” and the idea that he had been “the first pope” in Rome, with successors to follow.

Continued in Part 2

If you would like to contact Jean you may do so here – seasideroses333@gmail.com

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