More examples…

…of what I meant when I wrote

Often, I find that indictments of Roman Catholicism are doubly indicting of Protestantism, and indictments of Protestantism are doubly indicting of Roman Catholicism.

Two common charges leveled by Roman Catholics against Protestants:

  1. Protestants generally allow divorce.
  2. Protestants generally allow the use of birth control.

Both of these charges are true. But both indict the Roman Catholic church more than the Protestant churches they are leveled against. Roman Catholics do not allow divorce–yet have an identical divorce rate to Lutherans, and only a slightly lower rate than mainline protestants. Roman Catholicism teaches it is sinful to use birth control other than NFP, yet 98% of sexually experienced RC women have used a method other than NFP; and 87% of RC who are sexually active, fertile, and do not want to become pregnant currently use methods other than NFP. Both of these numbers are only 1% less than the numbers for the population at large.

The same is true of common charges leveled by Protestants against Roman Catholicism:

  1. Roman Catholicism gives the Pope and bishops authority above scripture.
  2. Roman Catholicism adds extra-biblical teaching, such as limbo.

These are also true. Yet Protestantism tends to give any pastor, or anyone that writes a Christian book, and even the culture in general authority over scripture. For example, the head covering example I mentioned in the last post. And Protestantism adds its fair share of extra-biblical teachings–including the “sin of segregation,” and the “sin of human slavery.”

 Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God. Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time.  For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way.  And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.  Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. —2 Thessalonians 2:3-12 (ESV)

12 thoughts on “More examples…

  1. There is a difference when your standard (The Catechism of the Catholic Church) clearly says something is sinful, evil, etc. and when there is no standard to hold to. I can say Catholics that pursue Divorce or Contraception are bad Catholics.

    But there is another more subtle evidence of guilt. When Protestants allowed contraception, they doubled down on being anti-gay. Some of the same people who would allow “other than vaginal” sex between married partners then went ballistic over any thought of removing the law against (homosexual) sodomy. Yet a contracepted or “temporary” marriage is a “gay marriage”.

    And on the other side, it is NEVER over what scripture actually says, but who gets to interpret and resolve it. From pure logic, scripture is ambiguous on many points (paedo-baptism as one example). But then again the question becomes whether the Church as established by Jesus says what Scripture is, or if Scripture, inspired by the Holy Spirit, says what the Church is. I would note “Upon this Rock I will build my church” – the Rock doesn’t refer to the Bible or Scripture which the NT didn’t exist at the time.

    Yet we are arguing whether to measure the water pressure in PSI or kPa while the fire continues to rage out of control.

    There are so many bad churches of all denominations that if you find one where you can still feel comfortable and orthodox and grow in faith I’m hard pressed to argue that you should not stay there.

  2. @ TZ:

    There is a difference when your standard (The Catechism of the Catholic Church) clearly says something is sinful, evil, etc. and when there is no standard to hold to. I can say Catholics that pursue Divorce or Contraception are bad Catholics.

    Protestants also have a standard, and ignore it just as faithfully as Catholics ignore theirs.

    The problem is larger than Roman Catholicism or Protestantism.

  3. “The problem is larger than Roman Catholicism or Protestantism.”

    The problem is fallen human nature and desire for human respect over that of God’s. A holy fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and such people that have betrayed Christ that put man before Christ’s teachings.

    I will say that, from what I can tell, a “saved by faith alone” feeling has entered the RCC. While I wasn’t alive at the time, my study of recent history puts it around the turn of the century. It used to be that people would be denied sacraments if they led publicly sinful lives such as adultery, abortion, etc. Or they’d be excommunicated. But now a simple “I’m sorry” with no penance or purpose of amendment are called for by our clerics. The foundation of the walls and practices protecting the RCC laity are erroding, even if the official teaching has stood unchanged

  4. @ Chad

    I’d be willing to check out a Latin Mass, but having looked, the only one at all near me is a SSPX chapel about an hour away.

  5. @ Moose
    Up to you if its worth it then. I’d say it is, but then I converted to Catholicism originally from the simply spiritual beauty of the latin mass when I walked into it one day. My wife and I continue to drive an hour and a half to mine with the FSSP, and she was raised in an SSPX parish in Florida that managed to keep her out of our mainstream culture despite a bad hand dealt to her family before they converted. The SSPX is very strict on a great deal that the majority of Catholics have surrendered to modern errors. You’ll see the Body and Blood treated with full reverence. They have been fighting a spiritual battle for a long time over it and other issues within the RCC in modern times.

    Most Latin mass parishes have a translation to follow along with, though when I started attending one I didn’t know that. I simply spent the time in prayer, enjoying the beauty of the mass and a purgative inspiration that God gave me. Follow your instincts on which you’d prefer, or any other graces/inspirations God sends your way.

  6. @ Chad

    I plan on checking it out at some point, mainly from curiosity.

    A tidbit from the Orthodox Church we visited: somehow, some of the Eucharist was knocked on the ground. The priest moved away from it, and continued to serve. Once everyone had been served, the priest got down on hands and knees, and licked the carpet clean. I was impressed.

  7. Moose
    You should see the same if it happened there. Its an even more complicated issue if the Blood spilled. Thankfully that rarely happens.

  8. @ Chad

    Glad to hear it. In the Orthodox churches, the body and blood are together in a chalice, so a spill of one is a spill of both. Thankfully, the amount was small (the spoon, not the chalice, was bumped).

  9. Your article made me laugh because it’s really true.

    In my experience with fundamentalist Protestants versus evangelical Protestants, the fundamentalists deserve one great compliment: if you can argue from scripture they’ll wrestle with you. They may not agree of course, but they will take the argument seriously and honestly and try to wrestle with you. It has to come from scripture though.

    Evangelicals won’t argue they’ll just switch off. Of course these are generalities, but even though I disagree with fundamentalism on a lot as a movement (technically a fundamentalist is so because of fundamentals that most Christians have agreed with throughout history but they expand beyond that as a movement frequently), fundamentalists are way more sincere and rigorous than they get credit for. They just have a tendency to get unbalanced on a few things, although I’m sure they’d call me a compromiser for saying so.

  10. Interesting.

    Most Latin masses will not serve the Most Precious Blood to the average communicant. It has been consecratrd, broken and then mixed to shoe the faithful the life, death, and resurrection of Christ that occurs at every mass. The mass does so through the changing of it from bread to Flesh, the spilling of Blood on Calvary with the consecration of the wine to Blood, the mixing of the two to be the Resurrection, and the partaking of the Flesh by the faithful to be towards their future resurrection by participating in the one that just occurred at the alter.

    People can partake of the Precious Blood if needed (such as gluten intolerance) but all Latin Masses will gain a bishops approval for each individual need to do so. Mostly because if His Blood spills, its almost impossible to get it all from anything but chemically sealed marble flooring, and any carpet that such occurred on should be torn up and burned in a ritualistic fire. Eternal life is worth those risks, but only if the Body is unavailable through God’s design of those parishioners bodily/spiritual needs.

    I thought I’d give some background on why you may not receive the Precious Blood as wine, because technically you are in the Body. This is in addition to the theology behind God existing completely in every partical of the Bread, due to His nature existing as something not able to be divided into parts.

    And thus why licking the floor, or more extreme measures, are necessary. Any why I become enraged by Catholic priests that don’t treat Him as such – they are literally allowing Christ to be thrown to the ground and allowing the souls in their care to trample Him on their way to Him. The average mass in America is a travesty that has set aside the rich inheritance God has allowed the Gentiles to partake of.

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