Catholicism’s Happy Face Masks Same Old Bondage
Evangelicals who are enamored with the smiling face of the new Jesuit pope should perhaps take advantage of his new offer. Eager to bridge the technology gap with hip followers, Pope Francis I has decreed “time off purgatory” to anyone who follows the pope’s tweets on Twitter. Anyone who cares to notice will see that Rome’s web of spiritual bondage is still intact behind the new Vatican campaign for “unity.”
If purgatory is real, where sins are paid for by personal suffering, then Catholicism has another “christ.” The Christ of the Bible “paid it all,” leaving us to only receive the free gift of salvation. Otherwise, if eternal life depends on our paying for it by our own suffering, it is no longer free. Catholicism’s christ is inadequate for justification by faith.
If purgatory is real, then John 3:16 is wrong, Ephesians 2:8-9 is wrong, Romans 6:23 is wrong, etc. Thus, Catholicism cannot claim to have the true gospel; it can only qualify under Paul’s definition of “another gospel.” (See Galatians 1.)
Once we lift this trap door into the dark tunnels of Roman Catholic bondage, where do we stop? If we explore the cavern of purgatory further, we find Martin Luther’s objection to the sale of “indulgences,” basically get-out-of-purgatory-free cards. Those who claim that Catholicism has changed need to know that indulgences are still available for those who climb the Sacred Steps in Rome (reportedly brought from Pilate’s house after Jesus scaled them during His trial). Or, attendance at events like World Youth Day, can also get you time off purgatory.
Connected to the dark cave of purgatory is the tunnel of “auricular” confession. Here again, the Catholic christ needs a little help. Repentance before Jesus is replaced by “priest confessors,” who somehow have the power to forgive sin provided you make a “good confession.”
This leads to a bigger cavern of priestcraft. God ripped open the temple veil giving us direct contact to God through the priesthood of Jesus thus eliminating the need for human priests. Catholicism makes the bogus claim that the pope and the hierarchy simply continues the Old Testament priesthood. Catholicism gains additional control by inserting the priests between God and the people.
Like all the other false religions, Roman Catholicism is all about bondage and control. Unscriptural infant baptism starts the process. Confirmation initiates loyalty to the church, not Jesus. Regular Mass attendance is essential to maintain favor with the wafer-god they call Jesus, without which, eternal life is in jeopardy. A marriage is void unless blessed by the “church” which includes pledging to raise children in the “church.” Celibacy of priests and nuns denies them a family, leaving them no escape from the “church.”
If a “good confession” (last rites) is not made just before death, any unforgiven sin must be paid for with torment in purgatory. However, only minor (venial) sins are “purged” there. So-called “mortal” sins consign one directly to hell.
Nowhere in this system is the poor Roman Catholic granted assurance of eternal life. Presuming so is actually a sin: the “sin of presumption.” This is definitely not the “good news” John talked about in 1 John 5:13.
Bible believers, we must speak up against the lie that this Roman Catholic cult is just another “denomination,” with a different worship style. We must help them see that they have a false gospel, a non-biblical Jesus, and “come out” of Rome’s trap (Rev. 18:4).