This article was put up with the gracious permission of Bill Jackson who
is the head of the Christians Evangelizing Catholics organization.
You may get his material by writing: C.E.C
Dr. Bill Jackson
P.O. Box 99141
Louisville, KY, U.S.A.
Written by Dr. Bill Jackson
Biblical truths offered in a spirit of Christian love
The Catholic Charismatic Movement, which began in Duquesne
University in 1969, has become a source of much consternation and
confusion among God's people. Their emphasis is to underline love as
the only criterion for fellowship among spiritual people. While this
sounds harmless and attractive, a love that is not founded upon
scriptural truth is a product of the human nature and cannot be compared
to the love that is of God. Our love must bear scriptural scrutiny, and
although the outcry is that too much probing will tarnish the love, if
the love be of God, close inspection will only serve to demonstrate its
We are commanded to prove all things; hold fast to that which is
good (1 Thess. 5:21), and to try the spirits, whether they be of God
(1 Jn. 4:1). We know that Satan can transform himself as an angel of
light (2 Cor. 11:14), and so can his ministers. It is only the
searchlight of scripture that can discern the truth about this movement.
Charismatic Catholics do not like anyone to probe beneath their thin
veneer of love to find out their true doctrinal foundation. They desire
fellowship on the lowest planes - common feelings, experiences and
phrases that sound religious and can mean anything. Because of this, it
is imperative that we look carefully, praying that the knowledge God
imparts will not only clear our thinking, but will also help us to
minister the truth to charismatic Catholics and others in love.
We must start at the beginning by asking the question - ARE
CHARISMATIC CATHOLICS CHRISTIANS? To assume this to be true (as some
Christians do) without Scriptural foundation would be to undermine a
thorough Scriptural investigation. So we must answer this question
using clear biblical guidelines, and proceed from there.
The Apostle John tells us, "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the
Christ is born of God" (1 Jn. 5:1). The necessity is belief, not
profession. It is not whosoever says they believe, but "whosoever
believeth." What must they believe? "That Jesus is the Christ." This
was the revelation given to Peter by God (Mt. 16:16) and this is still
the cornerstone of God's revelations to men today. Whosoever
scripturally believes this great fact is born of God.
Notice in both of these foundation texts the use of the title Christ
applies to Jesus. Today many do not realize the importance of this
title; it is just tacked on to the name of Jesus as a matter of course.
Yet is has tremendous significance, for Christ is the Greek word for
Messiah, and we understand that believing He is the Christ entails
acceptance of and trust in God's revelation of Jesus as Messiah,
especially His Deity and Substitutionary Atonement (Isa. 9:6; 53:4-6).
Lip service may be paid to Jesus Christ, but truly believing in Him
means we accept and trust His Messiahship.
Charismatic Catholics have no trouble ascribing Deity to Jesus,
although their soteriology plainly denies this fact becasue they do not
accept the completeness of His sacrifice for sin. They say that they
believe He died for them, but have no heart knowledge of His
Substitutionary Atonement. Some will point to their baby baptism as the
time they were born again and became Christians; others their first
Communion, when, for the first time, they "received Christ." Some
appear to have a more evangelical testimony and came to Christ later in
life, perhaps in response to an altar call. But the vital question they
must answer is where does their salvation come from?
Do they continue to receive propitiation in the Mass? Since their
Church teaches that they do, can they deny this and continue to define
themselves as Roman Catholics? Does confession (the sacrament of
penance) absolve from sin? Anyone, whether altar boy, pope or
charismatic Catholic who believes it does, cannot at the same time be
trusting the one perfect substitutionary Sacrifice of Christ, and
therefore is not born of God according to 1 Jn. 5:1. One who answers no
to these questions is denying Roman Catholic dogma, and because of this
is condemned by the Roman Catholic Church to be living in a state of
Feelings, professions, emotions, experiences are all swept away by
the absolute truth of God's Word. A doctrine that tries to substitute a
feeling of love for biblical truth is Satanic.
To anyone who claims to be a Roman Catholic and does not believe the
Mass is truly a sacrifice for sin, does not frequent Confession and does
not pray to Mary because Jesus Christ is a perfect Mediator, we would
ask the obvious question: is he truly a Roman Catholic?
Possibly he truly trusts Christ but does not have assurance of
salvatoin because of his Roman Catholic background and associations. At
the best, he is living a sub-par Christian life, in spite of the
effusions of human emotion that may gush forth in seeming love and
spiritual power. His experiences are just a lot of candy floss compared
to the solid Christian who not only trusts Christ, but has assurance
(1 Jn 5:13); is learning Bible truth in a local church (Acts 2:42) and
shares his faith (not his experience) with others (Mk. 16:15).
On close examination, we will find that a person who is a born again
Christian and remains in the Roman Catholic Church is either ignorant,
disobedient or hypocritical.
Some converted Roman Catholics may be ignorant of the biblical
command to separate from pagan practices, or they may be ignorant of
what the Roman Church really teaches. We can help them by lovingly
pointing out the contrasts, and showing them what the Bible says.
However, some know the truth but find it more convenient to remain
in the Roman church. These people are simply disobedient to the Word of
God. One charismatic Catholic told me that he would come out of the
Church "as soon as the Holy Spirit told him to." I asked him if he was
waiting for a personal letter from the Holy Spirit, or would he take
what was written to all in 2 Cor. 6?
While the word "hypocrite" sounds ugly, it merely means play-acting,
or pretending to be what you are not. If you are a truly converted
child of God (born according to 1 Jn. 5:1), and you attend Mass,
pretending to participate but knowing that it is a sacrifice void of any
spiritual benefit, you are play-acting. You are a hyprocrite! On the
other hand, there are people who are still convinced Roman Catholics;
they look to the sacraments to remove sin and therefore are not relying
on the perfect work of Christ. If they pretend to be evangelical
Christians, they are hyprocrites.
We must ask if the Roman Catholic Church is truly a Christian
Church. Living in Western civilization has its disadvantages in the
broad definition we have given to the word Christian. This is not a
term signifying those who have taken Jesus as their figure-head. To
find the true definition of the Church of Jesus Christ, and individual
churches that are His, we must turn not to the dictionary but to the
The Corinthian Christians were people that were sanctified in Christ
(1 Cor. 1:2). To be sanctified means to be cleansed and set apart for
God's use, and we remember that it is the blood of Christ that cleanses
from sin, not confession, Mass, holy water or any other Roman Catholic
The members of the local church at Ephesus were called (Eph. 1:1),
thus signifying those robed in the perfect righteousness of Christ, not
the flimsy garments of religious acts.
In 1 Thess. 1:1, we read of a church that is in the Lord Jesus
Christ. Any Church that does not teach the full Messiahship of Jesus is
not in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Roman Catholic Church does not teach His substitutionary
atonement. It preaches another Gospel, and is therefore condemned to
Hell by the Apostolic writings of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 1:8,9.
The Roman Catholic Church IS NOT a Christian Church.
Because of this, we must ask if a converted Roman Catholic should
leave his Church. Human arguments can sound good. Shouldn't we go back
to the Roman Catholic and evangelize? How can we win them if we leave?
Would they not be offended if we suggested the Roman Catholic Church was
not a Christian Church? But we are left with the simple choice of
believing human logic or believing the Word of God. God told His people
to come out of paganism and idolatry (2 Cor. 6:14-18).
Therefore, it is essential for every truly born again child of God
to separate from the church of Rome or any other false system of
religion, and unite with a Bible believing fundamental Christian local
church so that they can serve God in true obedience.
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