In a recent letter to all the Roman priests in the world, Pope John Paul II
urged them to stress to their parishioners the need
of sin to the priest. Called
the Sacrament of Penance, it is
one of the seven "sacraments" or
"channels of grace" through which Roman
Catholics believe they receive divine merit.
This ritual is a major part of the
web of bondage woven by the
papacy to ensnare the precious Catholic people. Nowhere in the Bible do
we find that Christ set up a priesthood with power to absolve from sin.
Based on a single scripture in John 20: 21-23 is built the whole
dogma of the confessional and special
power of the priest to
forgive sin. Christ spoke these words to all the Christians
present and the disciples went on to declare salvation and sanctification
through confession and repentance to God alone.
Nowhere in the book of Acts or in Paul's letters is there any hint
of a priesthood of men much less one with special powers to forgive sin.
In fact, the book of Hebrews is written specifically to prove that the Old
Testament priesthood had been replaced by Jesus, the permanent High
Priest (Hebrews 7:21-28). All confession of sin was now to be made
to Jesus, alone.
Nor in early church history do we find men accepting
confession and dispensing forgiveness. This idea did not become
official Catholic doctrine until 1225 AD.
But, if everyone is free to confess privately to Jesus, the
priestcraft system of the papacy is unnecessary.
The papacy teaches that there is
no salvation outside the
Roman Church, so the pope has a monopoly on dispensing
salvation through baptism.
When you sin after baptism your salvation is in jeopardy.
The only way to get rid of that sin is to confess it to a priest
and be "absolved." Otherwise you may not be eligible even for
purgatory, much less
At every major juncture in life, birth, maturity, marriage,
midlife crisis, or death, the Roman "church" blocks the road and
says, "Either my way or be
Even the word "penance" is a perversion of the biblical
word "repentance." Penance carries the idea of doing something
to earn forgiveness. Repentance is recognizing that we can do
nothing to pay for our sin, that
Jesus "paid it all" and humbly accepting His forgiveness.
But the pope is worried. Fewer and fewer Roman Catholics are coming to confession. Thus his admonition to the priests of the world: "We need to declare with firmness and conviction that the sacrament of penance is the ordinary means of obtaining pardon and the remission of grave sins after baptism."
Instead, we need to lovingly show the people caught in this bondage that they can go directly to Jesus and forsake this prostitute church described in Rev. 17 and 18 which tries so hard to look like the true bride of Christ.