A Media Spotlight Special Report

by Albert James Dager

Copyright 1988, Media Spotlight


P.O. BOX 290

REDMOND, WA 98073-0290


There are problems in dealing with doctrinal errors in any church or

religious sect. Because one speaks out against error he is often

considered unloving toward those who hold those errors. That may be true

in some instances. No doubt there are those who would use knowledge of

the truth as an excuse to vent their wrath upon others with whom they

find dislike.

Besides the truth of his words, one's motive for his actions is the

all-important consideration in determining whether or not he is justified

in his charges: "Though I have all knowledge and have not love, I am

nothing" (1 Corinthians 13:2). The truth spoken in love--whether gently

or harshly--is the only way to confront error. Though not all who hear

the truth will recognize the love or accept the words, this does not

diminish the service to God or man by those speaking the truth in love.

It's difficult, when zealousness overtakes good judgment, to make the

truth sound as if it is being offered in love. No ones likes criticism,

and it is all the more unappealing when offered in words hard to receive.

Yet there are times when only hard words can adequately express the

truth. But no matter how the truth is presented, we always risk

offending those who may not understand our motive or the truth itself.

One may ask, "Who is to determine what is truth?" For the Christian

there is only one unimpeachable source: the Word of God, the Bible,

understood with the mind Christ--a mind humbly submitted to seeking the

will of the Father and following it. All who seek the truth with that

mind will find it (Matthew 7:7).

Because Roman Catholicism places its teaching authority and its

traditions on an equal footing with Scripture in formulating its

doctrines it has fallen into great error. It has rejected the objective

standard of God's Word in lieu of the subjective reasoning of man's

religious spirit. Where there has been conflict between Scripture and

tradition Roman Catholicism has attempted to explain Scripture in a

manner that subordinates it to tradition.

Today, among Roman Catholics, there is a searching for truth. And

with that searching has come an awakening to the fact that one's

salvation rests solely upon the shed blood of Jesus and His

resurrections. There have always been those within the Roman Catholic

Church who have recognized this truth and have attempted to bring it to

light in spite of persecution from the political hierarchy. Perhaps they

have not had a full grasp of the knowledge of the truth, having been

indoctrinated in Romanism for all or most of their lives, but they have

loved Jesus and have sought a closer walk with Him in the only way they


This may even be said of some priests (and certainly of many nuns) who

have not understood the full implications of certain doctrines of their

church. We can be thankful that we are saved by grace and not by


Yet with knowledge comes responsibility. Many Catholics, when

presented with the truth, receive it and enter into the salvation

provided by Christ. Some attempt for a time to remain in the Roman

Catholic Church in the hope that they may reach others in that church

with the truth. Sooner or later, however, as the full implications of

Rome's teachings dawn upon them, they are forced to make a choice: will

they tolerate serious error that nullifies the grace of God, or will they

leave in order to seek a more scriptural walk and enter into fellowship

with true believers?

It is to non-Catholic Christians that I hope this writing will give a

better understanding of why we cannot accept the Roman Catholic Church

(that is the religious system) as one with which we may have unity. But

it is also to those Catholics who are seeking the truth of God that it is

offered as a means to bring better understanding of how certain teachings

of their church nullify the doctrine of salvation by grace.

This particular writing deals with Roman Catholicism for specific

reasons. That church's plea for unity has not been understood among

Christians who are unaware that unity with Rome must be on its terms:

submission to papal authority. Also, there is a trend among Christians

to look favorably upon Roman Catholicism because it is perceived as

intrinsically "Christian". It is reasoned that, since Roman Catholicism

teaches the virgin birth, the deity of Christ, the sacrifice of the

cross, the resurrection, and belief in an eternal Hell, whatever else

they teach isn't important--they are only minor errors that can be


But the true implication of Rome's teachings has escaped many

Christians who are unaware of exactly what they contain. The issues at

hand in this writing are certain doctrines--essential for all Roman

Catholics to believe, and unchangeable--that effectively nullify the

cardinal doctrine upon which the Christian faith is built: salvation by


Careful analysis of Roman Catholic teaching demonstrates conclusively

that that church limits in the hearts and minds of its adherents the

saving power of Jesus' blood.

The six doctrines presented herein are by no means the only serious

errors to which the Roman Catholic Church adheres. But they are six of

the most serious errors which nullify the cardinal doctrine of salvation

by grace. This analysis is offered with the earnest prayer that Roman

Catholics who are searching for the truth will come to the realization

that salvation rests solely upon the grace of God through the person of

Jesus Christ alone, and not on any other mediator or mediatrix, nor on

the merits of one's own works.

And while my hope is for Catholics to realize these truths, I also

pray that all who call themselves "Christian" will realize them and come

out from any church whose teachings nullify them. May all Christians

examine their own hearts and, with a better understanding, reach out to

Catholics with the truth rather than acquiesce in the name of



When Jesus came to the neighborhood of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his

disciples this question: "Who do people say that the Son of Man is?"

They replied, "Some say John the Baptizer, others Elijah, still others

Jeremiah or one of the prophets."

"And you," he said to them, "who do you say that I am?" "You are

Messiah," Simon Peter answered, "the Son of the living God!" Jesus

replied, "Blest are you, Simon son of Jonah! No mere man has revealed

this to you, but my heavenly Father. I for my part declare to you, you

are 'Rock,' and on this rock I will build my church, and the jaws of

death shall not prevail against it. I will entrust to you the keys of

the kingdom of heaven, whatever you declare bound on earth shall be bound

in heaven; whatever you declare loosed on earth shall be loosed in


Then he strictly ordered his disciples not to tell anyone that he was

the Messiah. Matthew 16:13-20

Upon this passage of Scripture rest all the claims of the Roman

Catholic Church as being the only true Church instituted by Christ. All

Roman Catholic doctrine and its interpretation of Scripture and tradition

likewise have their foundation in this single Bible passage because,

according to the Roman Catholic Church, it is this singular portion of

all the inspired writings which gives it the authority to make its laws

and declare its doctrines which must be adhered to in order to be

considered fully incorporated into the Body of Christ.

The Roman Catholic Church believes that when Simon Peter (Petros,

translated "Rock") was told by Jesus that upon this rock (petra) he would

build His Church, Peter was given primacy of position over all the

apostles and, subsequently, over the entire Church. He was, in effect

the first Pope and the Roman Catholic Church believes that all succeeding

Popes are his descendants on the ecclesiastical ladder in time.

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia published by Thomas Nelson Co.,

page 479:

The Pope is the Roman Pontiff who, by divine law, has supreme

jurisdiction over the universal Church. He is the supreme superior of

all religious. The Pope may act alone or with a council in defining

doctrine for the universal Church or in making laws. (cf Infallibility).

He is addressed as His Holiness the Pope. By title and right he is:

Bishop of Rome, Vicar of Jesus Christ, Successor of St. Peter, the Prince

of the Apostles, Supreme Pontiff, Patriarch of the West, Primate of

Italy, Archbishop and Metropolitan of the Roman province, and Sovereign

of the State of Vatican . (Cf Apostolic succession)

Vatican II teaches: "This Church (of Christ) constituted and

organized in the world as a society, subsists in the Catholic Church,

which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in union

with that Successor, although many elements of sanctification and truth

can be found outside of her visible structure. These elements, however,

as gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ, possess an inner

dynamism toward Catholic unity." (LG8)

And: "In exercising supreme, full, and immediate power over the

universal Church, the Roman Pontiff makes use of the departments of the

Roman Curia. These, therefore, perform their duties in his name and with

his authority, for the good of the Churches and in the service of the

sacred pastors" (CD9).

The Pope thus has (1) a genuine primacy of jurisdictional power, that

is, a power connected with the primatial office itself as an essential,

constitutive element.

Regarding the reason why Rome is the seat of the Roman Catholic

Church, the Catholic Encyclopedia says, under the heading "ROME."

The capital city of today's Italy, the seat of the government, and

principal city of the ancient Roman Empire, was inhabited as early as the

eight century B.C. After having spent some time in Jerusalem and

Antioch, St. Peter journeyed to Rome in AD 42 and established the Church,

making numerous converts and enduring the first-century persecutions. It

is within the city of Rome , called the city of seven hills, that the

entire area of Vatican State proper now is confined. By treaty with the

Italian government certain other properties apart from the Vatican State

are considered as territorial parts of the state of Vatican City. Since

the founding of the Church there by St. Peter, the city of Rome has been

the center of Christendom. The city itself is the diocese of the Pope as

bishop of Rome.

About the Pope and his relationship to Christians (both Roman

Catholics and non-Catholics) the Roman Catholic Church holds the

following doctrine to be true:

Hence we declare, affirm, define and pronounce that it is altogether

necessary for the salvation of every creature to be subject to the Roman


It must be understood that the doctrine of Papal Infallibility states

that when a Pope is speaking officially on matters of faith or morals he

is speaking infallibly and there is no possibility of error in his


This doctrine, stated by Pope Boniface VIII in 1302 through his

encyclical, "Unam Sanctum," was considered doctrine as defined and

pronounced officially. Since Roman Catholic doctrine cannot change

(according to the Roman Catholic Church itself) then it must be assumed

that this doctrine must still be held to.

Today this doctrine is largely played down or ignored because of the

impact it can have upon non-Catholics; but we can't ignore the fact that

it was declared doctrine and, no matter how it has been elaborated upon

since, it still must be true. There is no salvation to anyone who is not

subject to the Pope.

If this doctrine is not true, then neither can be the doctrine of

Papal Infallibility because we would see immediately that Pope Boniface

VIII made an error in his pronouncement of this doctrine.

However, assuming that this doctrine is true, then how do we handle

the following doctrine as defined by Vatican II:

The Church recognizes that in many ways she is linked with those who,

being baptized, are honored with the name of Christian, though they do

not profess the faith in its entirety or do not preserve unity of

communion with the successor of Peter.

We can say that in some real way they are joined with us in the Holy

Spirit, for to them also He gives His gifts and graces, and is thereby

operative among them with His sanctifying power.

There is a problem which we must honestly consider here. God's

salvation doesn't fluctuate from century to century. What was necessary

for salvation at the beginning is still necessary today and no amount of

philosophizing can change that fact.

The issue here isn't whether non-Catholics can have salvation if they

do not submit to the Pope. The issue is whether or not the Pope and/or

the Magisterial of the Roman Catholic Church has a legitimate claim to

infallibility in its proclamation of dogma.

Granted, this may seem like a small matter to most Christians of any

denominational persuasion but the importance can only be understood as

one realizes the conflict in dogma which casts a shadow of question on

the teaching authority of the Roman Hierarchy. For if there is any

question of the validity of that teaching authority then all of the

stated dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church would have to be tested to see

if they were, in fact, of God or not. The essential dogmas relating to

salvation and the destiny of the human soul are especially crucial for

consideration for there are several such dogmas as defined by the Roman

Church which, if properly understood, can nullify the primary dogma of

salvation through faith in Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross of Calvary.

In an attempt to be as totally objective as possible, I have, in the

following pages, followed a simple outline consideration of several

doctrines as they are defined by the Roman Catholic Church. After naming

a particular doctrine I have, wherever possible, stated the year it was

defined, the source of its definition and the Roman Catholic Church's

basis for that definition, whether it be according to that church's

interpretation of the Holy Scriptures or according to tradition. Then

follows a verbatim quotation of the doctrine from a reliable source. All

sources quoted are approved Roman Catholic publications which bear the

imprimatur of authorized representatives of the Roman Catholic Church.

The imprimatur, or "right to publish" is the Roman Church's means of

protecting itself from spurious or forged documents which purport to be

official when in fact they are not.

Roman Catholic Canon 1394 requires that when a work is printed, notice

of the grant of the permission be printed in that work. It is the

simplest and most efficient way to acquaint the public with the fact that

the permission was granted.

The Latin word "imprimatur" literally means "Let it be printed." and

is used by Church authorities to extend permission for the printing of

writings, prayers, pictures, and other material. The word is generally

followed by the ordinary (bishops, abbots, prelates, etc.) of the diocese

in which the printing or publishing was done or where the author lives.

The imprimatur guarantees that the written work is free from any

doctrinal or moral error as defined by the Roman Catholic Church.

In addition to doctrine which the Roman Catholic Church considers

essential to belief in order to be considered a member of the true Body

of Christ, I have also listed secondary teachings as well as rituals and

traditions which the Roman Catholic Church holds sacred.

Following the stated doctrine I have listed Scriptural verses which

can clearly be understood without any special knowledge of the Bible, by

anyone who will read this work with an open heart. These Scriptural

passages should prove valuable in ascertaining the validity of the

questionable teachings.

Finally, will follow my own personal observations which, using the

intelligence that the Lord gave me along with a sincerity to learn the

true nature of these doctrines, will give a logical explanation why I

feel that the doctrine of teaching in question should not be held by a

believer or at least should not be held unquestionably as a prerequisite

to membership in the Body of Christ.

It is my hope that those who read these pages will be ministered to in

their spirits and that all, both Catholics and non-Catholics will come to

a better understanding of God's work in and outside of the Roman Catholic









Infallibility - In its Catholic doctrinal meaning, infallibility is

the end result of divine assistance given the Church whereby she is

preserved from the possibility and liability to error in teachings on

matters of faith and morals. That infallibility was always present in

the Church, even from apostolic times, is frequently affirmed by actions

and declarations of the Apostles (Gal. 1:9) and spoken of by the fathers

of the Church as the "charisma of truth" (St. Irenaeus). The doctrine of

infallibility was defined by Vatican Council I (Sess. III, cap.4) and

promulgated on July 18, 1870, the day before war broke out between

Germany and France, which led indirectly to formal suspension of the

Council three months later. The doctrine defines that infallibility is:

(1) in the pope personally and solely as the successor of St. Peter, (2)

in an ecumenical council subject to confirmation by the pope, (3) in the

bishops of the Universal Church teaching definitively in union with the

pope. As such, infallibility does not extend to pronouncements on

discipline and Church policy and by no means includes impeccability of

the pope or inerrancy in his private opinions. It is, briefly, the

assured guarantee of the unfolding of the apostolic deposit of faith by

authority of the Church whereby Christ's doctrine must and will be handed

on by an infallible Church guided by the Holy Spirit. It is

distinguished from both biblical inspiration and revelation.

Vatican II further teaches: "This is the infallibility which the Roman

Pontiff, the head of the college of bishops, enjoys in virtue of his

office, when, as the supreme shepherd and teacher of all the faithful,

who confirms his brethren in their faith, he proclaims by a definitive

act some doctrine of faith or morals.

"Therefore his definitions, of themselves, and not from the consent of

the Church, are justly styled irreformable, for they are pronounced with

the assistance of the Holy Spirit, an assistance promised to him in

blessed Peter. Therefore they need no approval of others, nor do they

allow an appeal to any other judgment" (LG 25).

And: "The Roman Pontiff is not pronouncing judgment as a private

person. Rather as the supreme teacher of the universal Church, as one in

whom the charism of the infallibility of the Church herself is

individually present, he is expounding or defending a doctrine of

Catholic Faith" (LG 25).

And: "Although the individual bishops do not the enjoy the prerogative

of infallibility, they can nevertheless proclaim Christ's doctrine

infallibly. this is so, even when they are dispersed around the world,

provided that while maintaining the bond of unity among themselves and

with Peter's successor, and while teaching authentically on a matter of

faith or morals, they can concur in a single viewpoint as the one which

must be held conclusively" (LG 25).

And: "This infallibility with which the divine Redeemer willed His

Church to be endowed in defining a doctrine of faith and morals extends

as far as the deposit of divine revelation, which must be religiously

guarded and faithfully expounded" (LG 25).

The Catholic Encyclopedia / Nelson - page 293 & 293


Infallibility does not mean preservation from sin, which is

impeccability. In apostolic times, St. Peter was infallible in the

exercise of his office. But, unlike the Blessed Virgin, he was not

impeccable, although it is commonly held that all the apostles were

confirmed in grace on the day of Pentecost and thus preserved from losing

the friendship of God.

Infallibility is not inspiration. Inspiration implies that God is the

principal author of the word or work inspired, although using a human

instrument; whereas infallibility is a providential aid, so that the

human being who was helped (and not God) is the immediate author of an

infallible statement.

The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 224


Galatians 1:9

I repeat what I have just said: if anyone preaches a gospel to you

other than the one you received, let a curse be upon him!


Galatians 1:9

The Apostle Paul was very careful to point out in the verse just

previous to this one that, even if he himself were to preach any other

gospel than the one he had preached, he should be accursed.

The simple gospel of Truth that Paul proclaimed had nothing to do with

faith in any person other than Jesus Christ. If, in order to belong to

the Body of Christ and, therefore, to be an heir of salvation, it is

necessary to believe in the infallibility of a mere man, then faith in

Christ's atonement isn't enough. Galatians 1:9 in no way affirms

infallibility. On the contrary, the mere suggestion that the Apostle

Paul could become apostate himself and bring another gospel later would

be evidence that he, as the greatest teacher in the history of the

Church, wasn't infallible.

Some might argue that he wasn't the pope - Peter was. In the same

book of the Bible and just in the next chapter (2) Paul relates how he

had to rebuke Peter for his attitude towards the Gentile believers,

treating them as inferior to the Jewish believers.

Scripture presents ample evidence that Paul was the great authority in

the early Church even above Peter when it came to teaching. Yet, as I

have stated already, he admitted the possibility that he might even be

swayed from the truth and at a later time preach another gospel than the

true gospel which had already been proclaimed.

The Gospel of Christ is the good news of salvation through faith in

His redemptive work. To add doctrines to the already proclaimed

doctrines of Scripture on the basis of their being recently revealed is

to say that, as years pass, later generations must meet new standards of

belief than earlier generations. This is not reasonable nor is it in

conformance with God's own words that "I, the Lord, do not change."

(Malachi 3:1)

In any case, this is hardly adequate Scriptural basis for declaring so

important a doctrine that would permit complete control of the thinking

of billions of people down through the ages.



James 3:13-17

If one of you is wise and understanding, let him show this in practice

through a humility filled with good sense. Should you instead nurse

bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, at least refrain

from arrogant and false claims against the truth. Wisdom like this does

not come from above. It is earthbound, a kind of animal, even devilish,

cunning. Where there are jealousy and strife, there also are inconstancy

and all kinds of vile behavior. Wisdom from above, by contrast, is first

of all innocent. It is also peaceable, lenient, docile, rich in sympathy

and the kindly deeds that are its fruits, impartial and sincere. James


If any of you is without wisdom, let him ask it from the God who gives

generously and ungrudgingly to all, and it will be given him.


While the Scriptures quoted above don't actually refute the doctrine

of infallibility in so many words, they prove that God's wisdom is

available to all who will ask in faith believing. Actually, there is no

way to prove that the pope is not infallible simply because it is

possible for any person to be infallible if he is being led by the Holy


What I wish to point out in using these verses from the Epistle of

James is that, according to them, there must have been some Popes who

were not infallible because their actions betrayed a lack of wisdom and

faith. It isn't my purpose to rehash all of the old accusations against

former papal authorities who committed all sorts of atrocities in the

interest of power. The Roman Catholic Church is well aware of them and,

at least as far as the hierarchy of today is concerned, they are looked

upon as evil manifestations of a sordid past.

But those atrocities prove that the popes responsible for them were

incapable of exercising proper faith and wisdom. Even later on in his

Epistle James make the comment that "faith without good works is dead."

Dead faith can hardly produce infallibility in judgment. Even though the

Roman Catholic Church may honestly state that infallibility does not mean

impeccability, it nevertheless must be remembered that God will not

impart His grace to evil doers.

The question of infallibility isn't even dealt with in Scripture. A

doctrine so important as this should be expected to be stated in the

writings of the Apostles since they covered everything else that was

necessary for belief.

When the Roman Catholic Church says that the Pope's definitions are

irreformable and therefore need no approval of others, nor do they allow

and appeal to any other judgment, she is placing the Body of Christ at

the mercy of the personal whims of a single human being or, in some

cases, the magisterium with the approval of that single human being.

The word "irreformable" means "beyond the possibility of being

reformed." It implies that no change is ever possible. Yet, there are

countless instances of changes in Roman Catholic teaching. Remember now

that infallibility applies to all teachings on faith and morals when the

Pope is speaking officially. This must then apply to all Church laws

which can affect the eternal destiny of believers.

When the Church in just the past couple of decades taught that if a

Catholic were to eat meat on Friday and die without confessing it to a

priest he would go to Hell, it was certainly speaking on a matter of

faith and morals combined. According to Church law it was a mortal sin

worthy of eternal damnation to eat a piece of meat on Friday. This

depended, of course, on what part of the world you lived in or what rite

you adhered to (Eastern or Western).

Infallibility, according to its definition does not only extend to the

doctrines it also extends to the laws of the Church. And, since the

Roman Catholic Church insists that no decree spoken with infallibility

can be changed, it is only logical to assume that, when those laws were

changed regarding the eternal destiny of a soul because of some alleged

sin, the irreformable theory can only be held invalid.

This concept of infallibility must be tested then against any changes

in Church law whereby the eternal destiny of the believer is altered

simply because all such laws pertain to morality as defined by the Church

at a given moment in time. The doctrine of infallibility does not allow

for any such changes. Yet no Catholic will deny that such changes have

taken place. Remember now, that these changes I am speaking about are

only relative to laws that affect the eternal destiny of the soul; not

the laws of ritual or any other inconsequential rules. The Roman

Catholic Church rightfully omits those laws from consideration on


It isn't that the Pope is the immediate author of infallibility that

is the issue. It is that only the Pope can be infallible; and that he is

infallible on his own merit apart from inspiration by the Holy Spirit.

On one hand it is to say that it's because of the Holy Spirit that the

Pope is infallible and on the other hand that the Pope is the immediate

author of infallibility and not God.

This contradiction in terms must be dealt with honestly because it is

a definite allusion to the possibility of supernatural power being the

property of a human being without crediting God's help. I'm sure most

Roman Catholics would deny such a teaching. Yet, according to one of the

official publications of the Catholic Church this is true.*

Finally, without belaboring the point, I refer you to the Prologue of

this writing to refresh your memory on the teaching of Boniface III that,

without submission to the Roman Pontiff there can be no salvation. That

was Church doctrine which, according to the Church, cannot change. Yet

Vatican II has recently overridden that doctrine and said that non-

Catholics who are baptized and even non-Christians can have salvation

even thought they do not have the fullness of faith because they have not

submitted to the authority of the Pope.

As I said, I don't wish to belabor the point and I feel that this

evidence is sufficient to refute any such teaching that the Roman Pontiff

is the only source of God's revelation which can be considered


The truth is that God will reveal His truth to all of His children who

are obedient and seeking with an honest heart. But that truth will

always be based upon His unchanging Word and can never be contradictory

to that Word.

Every Christian must hold to John's warning in 1 John 4: "Beloved, do

not trust every spirit, but put the spirits to a test to see if they

belong to God, because many false prophets have appeared in the world.

This is how you can recognize God's Spirit: every spirit that

acknowledges Jesus Christ come in the flesh belongs to God, while every

spirit that fails to acknowledge him does not belong to God."

This seems simple enough until you realize that there are many false

teachers today who acknowledge that the man Jesus did live almost tow

thousand years ago in the flesh. But the word "Christ" or "Anointed

One," (Greek) is the same as the Hebrew "Messiah." It is in this name

that the fullness of Jesus' nature and mission on earth are contained.

Anyone speaking through the Spirit of God will acknowledge that Jesus,

the only begotten Son of God came in the flesh as a man to do the will of

His Father in reconciling the sinful man to Himself through His atonement

on the Cross and His resurrection from the dead in His glorified body.

But there is more to it than even this. Since the Messiah is the Word

of God (John 1) who became flesh, He must necessarily be God Himself and,

therefore unchangeable (Malachi 3:1). Since the Word of God does not

change then the manifestation of that Word through His written, inspired

Word is unchangeable. Consequently, any teaching which is not in

conformity to the written Word of God or which adds to or subtracts from

that written Word is not of the Spirit of God.

Therefore, the laws of the Roman Catholic Church which put conditions

for salvation upon the individual other than what the written Word of God

puts upon them (namely, justification by faith in Christ alone), are

invalid laws and, regardless of the claim of infallibility in proclaiming

those laws, they need not be adhered to. It's especially an imposition

upon the individual to say that, depending upon when in history or where

on the face of the earth he happen to live, his adherence to those laws

will determine whether he may inherit the promise that God has for him if

he will only obey the laws according to his faith in Christ as already

revealed in the written Word, the Bible.

* Vatican II (LG 25), The Catholic Encyclopedia, page 292-293.








The Sacrifice of the Mass is really the holy and living

representation and at the same time the unbloody and efficacious

oblation of the Lord's Passion and that blood-stained sacrifice which was

offered for us on the cross.

The Catholic Encyclopedia / Nelson - page 375


Christ's own association of what he did at the Last Supper with what

he was to do on Good Friday has been the Church's own norm for intimately

relating the two. The sacrifice of the altar, then, is no mere empty

commemoration of Calvary, but a true and proper act of sacrifice, whereby

Christ the high priest by an unbloody immolation offers himself a most

acceptable victim to the eternal Father, as he did on the cross. "It is

one and the same victim; the same person now offers it by the ministry of

his priests, who then offered himself on the cross. Only the manner of

offering is different."

The priest is the same, namely, Jesus Christ, whose divine person the

human minister represents at the altar. "By reason of his ordination, he

is made like the high priest and possesses the power of performing

actions in virtue of Christ's very person." (Canon 9)

The victim is also the same, namely, the Saviour in his human nature

with his true body and blood. Worth stressing is that what makes the

Mass a sacrifice is that Christ is a living human being with a human

will, still capable of offering (hence priest) and being offered (hence

victim), no less truly today than occurred on the cross. The Catholic

Catechism / Doubleday - pages 465, 466


Matthew 26:26 - 28

During the meal Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it, and gave it to

his disciples. "Take this and eat it," he said, "this is my body." Then

he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them. "All of you must drink

from it," he said, "for this is my blood, the blood of the covenant, to

be poured out in behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins."

Mark 14:22 - 24

During the meal he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to

them. "Take this," he said, "this is my body." He likewise took a cup,

gave thanks and passed it to them, and they all drank from it. He said

to them: "This is my blood, the blood of the covenant, to be poured out

on behalf of many."

Luke 22:19, 20

Then, taking bread and giving thanks, he broke it and gave it to them,

saying: "This is my body to be given for you. Do this as a remembrance

of me."

He did the same with the cup after eating, saying as he did so: "This

cup is the new covenant in my blood, which will be shed for you."

1 Corinthians 11:23 - 26

I received from the Lord what I handed on to you, namely, that the

Lord Jesus on the night in which he was betrayed took bread, and after he

had given thanks, broke it and said, "This is my body, which is for you.

Do this in remembrance of me." In the same way, after the super, he took

the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this,

whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me." Every time, then, you eat

this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until

he comes!

1 Corinthians 10:16, 17

Is not the cup of blessing we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ?

And is not the bread we break a sharing in the body of Christ? Because

the loaf of bread is one, we, many though we are, are one body, for we

all partake of the one loaf.


All of these Scriptures say pretty much the same thing and they all

relate to the last supper activity and words of Jesus. There are no

other Scriptures upon which the Roman Catholic Church bases so important

a doctrine as this, that the Mass is the actual sacrifice of the cross

being re-enacted in an unbloody manner, not merely a symbolic re-

enactment of that sacrifice, being offered through the priest.

The question arises as to why such a sacrifice is necessary. If

Jesus' death on the Cross was the fulfillment of His role as sacrificial

Lamb for the penalty and guilt of sin, why do we need further sacrifices?

That question can best be answered by Scripture itself, taking into

consideration that nowhere in the Bible is such a continuing sacrifice

spoken of. Quite the contrary as we shall see.


Hebrews 7:22 - 27

Thus has Jesus become the guarantee of a better covenant. Under the

old covenant there were many priests because they were prevented by death

from remaining in office; but Jesus, because he remains forever, has a

priesthood which does not pass away. Therefore he is always able to save

those who approach God through him, since he forever lives to make

intercession for them.

It was fitting that we should have such a high priest: holy, innocent,

undefiled, separated from sinners, higher than the heavens. Unlike the

other high priests, he has no need to offer sacrifice say after day,

first for his own sins and then for those of the people; he did that once

for all when he offered himself.

Hebrews 9:11 - 15

But when Christ came as high priest of the good thins which have come

to be, he entered once for all into the sanctuary, passing through the

greater and more perfect tabernacle not made by hands, that is, not

belonging to this creation. He entered, not with the blood of goats and

calves, but with his own blood, and achieved eternal redemption.

For if the blood of goats and bulls and the sprinkling of a heifer's

ashes can sanctify those who are defiled so that their flesh is cleansed,

how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal spirit

offered himself up unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from dead

works to worship the living God!

Hebrews 9:24 - 28

For Christ did not enter into a sanctuary made by hands, a mere copy

of the true one; he entered heaven itself that he might appear before God

now on our behalf. Not that he might offer himself there again and

again, as the high priest enters year after year into the sanctuary with

blood that is not his own; if that were so, he would have had to suffer

death over and over form the creation of the world. But now he has

appeared at the end of the ages to take away sins once for all by his

sacrifice. Just as it is appointed that men die once to take away sin

but to bring salvation to those who eagerly await him.

Hebrews 10:10 - 20

By this "will," (of God) we have been sanctified through the offering

of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Every other priest stands

ministering day by day, and offering again and again those same

sacrifices which can never take away sins. But Jesus offered one

sacrifice for sins and took his seat forever at the right hand of God;

now he waits until his enemies are placed beneath his feet. By one

offering he has forever perfected those who are being sanctified. The

Holy Spirit attests this to us, for after saying,

"This is the covenant I will make with them after those days says the

Lord: I will put my laws in their hearts and I will write them on their


he also says,

Their sins and their transgressions I will remember no more." Once

these have been forgiven, there is no further offering for sin.


The Apostle Paul was very careful to reiterate several times, the lack

of need for continual sacrifices. This particular letter was written to

the Hebrew Christians because they needed to be reassured that the

previous sacrifices of animals were no longer necessary. He pointed out

that, once Jesus paid the price for our sins there was not other price to

be paid; by the Lord (as priest) or by anyone else.

As our high priest today He performs the function of mediation for us

before the throne of God as we simply come to Him in faith accepting what

He has done for us. Why do we need to attach provisions to His wonderful

grace? The Word of God speaks so plainly here, why argue?

There is more crucial matter to be considered here. Every time the

"sacrifice" of the Mass is being offered it is a denial of the finished

work of the Cross. To say that Jesus must be offered up to God thousands

of times every day, all over the world, is to nullify a professed belief

in the sacrifice on Calvary. It is saying that Jesus' actual death on

the cross is no more than a dry-run for all those that follow on the

altars of Roman Catholic Churches everywhere.

Roman Catholic claims to the contrary, it says that the Lord's actual

death wasn't enough.

Please, dear reader, don't close your mind to this. I realize that

these pages don't contain pleasant reading for you if you consider

yourself a devout Catholic as I once did. But there is so much at stake


God wants us to come to Him in simple faith, accepting His Word as the

basis for that faith. When the traditions and philosophies of men

encroach upon the simply stated truths contained in Scripture, the issues

cannot help but become clouded.

This is why I urge you to search the Scriptures diligently to test the

things that are written here. Don't take any man's word for God's truth

no matter how impressive his titles and seminary training might be. No

one is infallible when it comes to state truth other than when he is led

by the Holy Spirit. But how can one know if the Holy Spirit is the one

who is speaking unless he tests that spirit against the written Word of

God which was given to us for that purpose.

You must even test my words. I earnestly implore you to. Realize

this as you do so: that everyone who has the Spirit of God in him has the

ability to decipher truth from error if his heart is truly open to God to

receive instruction.

The first question you must ask yourself, if you are honest, is, do I

have the Spirit of God living in me? If you don't know the answer to

this question, then chances are excellent that you don't.

If you wish to know the truth in all these matters and you also wish

to draw closer to God, then it is necessary that you accept His sacrifice

on the cross as the full and complete atonement for your sins. Repent,

once and for all, of your sins and ask the Lord to give you His Holy

Spirit so that you can be assured of eternal life. It is His Spirit

living in us that quickens our spirits and makes them alive to God.

From that point on it's a matter of living daily for Him and searching

the Scriptures to learn His will for your own life.

There is freedom in Christ which has been denied us all as long as we

remain subject to the dictates of men who impose upon us the restriction

of religious tradition.

Consider this: You must do more than believe that God's truths are

real. You must accept them for yourself personally. As the Lord said,

Do you believe? You do well. But the devils also believe and they


To know about God is one thing. To know Him personally is quite

another. One may say that he knows about the wealthiest man in all the

world. But until he is adopted by that man as an heir, he can't really

appropriate the benefits attached to sonship. God has offered us a way

to enter into His blessings by providing a one-time sacrifice for all of

our transgressions. When we speak of grace we know that we are speaking

of god's unmerited favor. Therefore, if salvation is by grace, what can

we do to earn it? None of us can pay the price of so great a gift.

But God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son, that

whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Believe it. Accept it. And bear with me as we carry on.








Transubstantiation - The way Christ is made present in this sacrament

(Holy Eucharist) is none other than by the change of the whole substance

of the bread into His body, and of the whole substance of the wine into

His blood...this unique and wonderful change the Catholic Church

rightfully calls transubstantiation. (Encyclical "Mysterium Fidei" of

Pope Paul VI - Sept.3, 1965) The first official use of the term was made

by the Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215 AD. Authoritative teaching

on the subject was issued by the Council of Trent. This change takes

place at the consecration of the Mass. Although it is not perceptible to

the senses, it is commonly called a miracle. 1979 Catholic Almanac - page



When Catholic Christianity affirms, without qualification, that "in

the nourishing sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, after the consecration of

the bread and wine, our Lord Jesus Christ, true God and true man," is

present "under the appearances of those sensible things," it rests its

faith on the words of Scripture and the evidence of Sacred Tradition.

The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 458

The first serious ripples of controversy came in the ninth century,

when a monk from the French Abby of Corbie wrote against his abbot, St.

Paschasius (785-860). Ratramnus (d. 868) held that Christ's body in the

Eucharist cannot be the same as Christ's historical body once on earth

and now in heaven because the Eucharistic body is invisible, impalpable,

and spiritual. He wanted to hold on to the Real Presence but stressed

the Eucharist as symbolic rather than corporeal. His book on the subject

was condemned by the Synod of Vercelli, and his ideas, it is held,

influenced all subsequent theories that contradicted the traditional

teaching of the Church.

Within two centuries the issue had reached such a point of gravity

that a formal declaration was evoked from the Holy See. In 1079,

Archdeacon Berengar of Tours who favored Ratramnus' position and wrote

against what he considered the excessive realism of Paschasius, was

required by (Pope) Gregory VII to accept the following declaration of

faith in the Eucharistic presence:

I believe in my heart and openly profess that the bread and wine

placed upon the altar are, by the mystery of the sacred prayer and the

words of the Redeemer, substantially changed into the true and life-

giving flesh and blood of Jesus Christ our Lord, and that after the

consecration, there is present the true body of Christ which was born of

the Virgin and, offered up for the salvation of the world, hung on the

cross and now sits at the right hand of the Father, and that there is

present the true blood of Christ which flowed from his side. They are

present not only by means of a sign and of the efficacy of the sacrament,

but also in the very reality and truth of their nature and substance.

Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 461

Responding to the claims of merely symbolic or spiritual presence, the

Church condemned "anyone who denies that the body and blood, together

with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ and, therefore, the

whole Christ is truly, really, and substantially contained in the

sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, but says that Christ is present in the

sacrament only as a sign, or figure, or by his power."

The expression "whole Christ" proved to be decisive. Since the whole

Christ is present in the fullness of his divine and human natures, this

implies that he is present under the sacramental appearances with the

totality of his divine attributes as well as his human properties. He is

therefore in the Eucharist also with the essence of those dimensional

features that we commonly associate with a living human being. The

explanation of how these physical properties are possible is part of

theological speculation but the fact is a matter of faith. Catholic

Catechism / Doubleday - page 462

There was no dependence on Aristotelian philosophy in the Church's use

of words like "substance" or "transubstantiation." Long before either

term had become commonplace in the West, the East spoke regularly of the

ousia or being of the bread and wine, which were changed into the ousia

or being of Christ. The which constitutes bread and wine, in virtue of

the sacramental consecration, ceased to be bread and wine and became the

reality of the whole Christ. What alone remained were the species, i.e.,

appearances or external properties of what looked and tasted like bread

and wine but were now the living body and blood of the Savior.

Given this perdurance of Christ's presence as long as the species

remain, it was only logical for the Church to worship the Blessed

Sacrament as it would the person of Jesus himself. As a result, he is to

be adored "in the holy sacrament of the Eucharist with the worship of

latria, including the external worship." Concretely this means that the

Blessed Sacrament is to be "honored with extraordinary festive

celebrations" and "solemnly carried from place to place" and "is to be

publicly exposed for the people's adoration." (Council of Trent - Canons

1 & 3) The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - pages 462, 463


Mark 14:22-25

During the meal he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to

them. "Take this," he said, "this is my body." He likewise took a cup,

gave thanks and passed it to them, and they all drank from it. He said

to them: "This is my blood, the blood of the covenant, to be poured out

on behalf of many. I solemnly assure you, I will never again drink of

the fruit of the vine until the day when I drink it new in the reign of


John 6:48-58

I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate manna in the dessert, but

they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven for a man to

eat and never die. I myself am the living bread come down from heaven.

If anyone eats this bread he shall live forever; the bread I will give is

my flesh, for the life of the world." At this the Jews quarreled among

themselves, saying "How can he give us his flesh to eat?" Thereupon

Jesus said to them: "Let me solemnly assure you, if you do not eat the

flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. He

who feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has life eternal, and I will

raise him up on the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood

real drink. The man who feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood remains in

me, and I in him. Just as the Father who has life sent me and I have

life because of the Father, so the man who feeds on me will have life

because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike

your ancestors who ate and died nonetheless, the man who feeds on this

bread shall live forever." He said this in a synagogue instruction at



The best thing to share here is to point out the continuation of the

Gospel of John discourse on the Lord being the bread from heaven. In the

very next verses we read:

"After hearing his words, many of his disciples remarked, "This sort

of talk is hard to endure: How can anyone take it seriously?" Jesus was

fully aware that his disciples were murmuring in protest at what he had

said. "Does it shake your faith?" he asked them. "What then, if you were

to see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before...? It is the spirit

that gives life; the flesh is useless. The words I spoke to you are

spirit and life.

Jesus Himself stated that He was speaking in a spiritual sense; that

we must eat of Him spiritually not physically because the flesh itself is

worthless. Yet, we see how the previous verses were taken out of context

and an important doctrine built upon them even to the point of stating

that the Roman Catholic Church condemns anyone who does not agree with

their interpretation.

Let's be totally objective here because, if one uses a particular rule

of interpretation to state that the Lord is speaking literally in a

specific verse of Scripture then he must use the same rule of

interpretation for the rest of that verse. That's only logical and fair

the the Scripture itself.

It is obvious that Jesus, when He said, "This is my body" did not say

"This has become my body." Since He was in His body at the time then He

couldn't have been in the piece of bread. And since His blood was

flowing through His veins, it couldn't be in the cup. If we were to

apply such a definition absolutely, then we must take the rest of His

statement in the same manner. In Luke 22:20 the same event is described

in more detail and the words are repeated almost verbatim in I

Corinthians 11:25:

He did the same with the cup after eating, saying as He did so:

"This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which will be shed for


Using this more complete account of what the Lord said, we ask the

question, "Was the bread His body?" Therefore we may honestly ask, "Was

the cup the new covenant?" If so, what happened to this new covenant

when the cup was lost? Without that cup, we have no new covenant. Of

course, the cup was symbolic of the new covenant which would be ushered

in after the Lord spilled His blood for our redemption and, by His

resurrection, opened the door for full fellowship with God as before the

fall of Adam.

We must likewise apply the rule of consistency to the verses that

recall the Lord's words about His being the living bread. Now, consider

for a moment: Was the Lord a piece of bread at the time He made that

statement? Which will; it be - Is Jesus bread or is a piece of bread

Jesus? According to this reference which the Church uses to teach

transubstantiation, the Lord was bread. Therefore, His disciples could

have bitten into Him and swallowed a piece of bread. Ridiculous? Of


But He said it and if it were to be taken literally instead of

spiritually then we can just as easily conclude that His flesh was made

of dough as we can conclude that a piece of dough is His flesh.

We must also then consider that Jesus was a rock, a tree, a vine, a

star, etc., for there are many passages of Scripture which speak of Him

in those terms and even by His own words.

If you are a Roman Catholic I urge you not to close your eyes to the

very important point. The reason will follow.


John 6:59-63

Quoted above.

Luke 22:18

I tell you, from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine

until the coming of the reign of God."


When Jesus said that He wouldn't drink of the fruit of the vine again

until the kingdom of God was established, He acknowledged that it was

still wine that was in the cup because that is what the fruit of the vine

is. It certainly isn't blood. The substance was unchanged after He had

pronounced His "consecration."

Now, why is it so serious to consider the Roman Catholic sacrament of

the Holy Eucharist as unworthy of participation by true Christians? In

light of Roman Catholic teachings that it must be worshiped even as the

Lord Jesus Himself is worshiped, it must be classed as idolatry.

Why do I use such strong words? Because, if we really analyze this

doctrine aside from traditional teachings of the Church, we will see that

it is telling us that a piece of bread is actually God.

Before we throw that off as nonsense, remember that the Church also

justifies its position on Mary as the Mother of God on the basis that

Jesus is God and she is His mother - therefore she is the Mother of God.

It is no more unreasonable to use that same rationale to assume then that

the piece of bread is God if it is, according to Roman Catholic teaching,

the very person of Jesus Christ.

Remember to, that "anyone who denies it as the body and blood,

together with the soul and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ: stands

condemned. This means that all Christians who are not Roman Catholics

are damned because they don't accept this teaching. It, in itself, is a

contradiction of the stand of Vatican II on the position of non-Catholic


Because the concept of "transubstantiation" is essential the the

sacrifice of the Mass, the two are unalterably linked together and,

should one be found false then they mush both be found false. That being

the case, even the concept of "transubstantiation," if it is adhered to,

nullifies the professed faith in the atonement of Jesus Christ on the

Cross. It too, as does the Mass, tells us that that atonement wasn't

enough. To say that is to deny the essential doctrine of atonement.

This is true regardless of whether or not one states that belief. Can I

say that I have accepted the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross for my sins

in a true sense if I still hold reservations about needing to add my own

works through vicariously offering sacrifices to supplement the original









Purgatory - The state or condition in which those who have died in the

state of grace, but with some attachment to sin, suffer for a time before

they are admitted to the glory and happiness of heaven. In this state

and period of passive suffering, they are purified of unrepented venial

sins, satisfy the demands of divine justice for temporal punishment due

for sins, and are thus converted to a state of worthiness of the beatific

vision. 1979 Catholic Almanac - page 379


Catholicism believes there is still the prospect for expiation (not

repentance) called purgatory because its function is to purify those who

die in God's friendship but are not fully cleansed of the effects of

their sins.

The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 254

The Benedictine constitution states that "We, with our apostolic

authority, make the following definition," and then goes on to declare

that the souls of the just, who die in God's friendship, "soon after

death and, in the case of those who need it, after purification, have

been, are, and will be in heaven."

The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 257

If those who are truly repentant die in charity before they have done

sufficient penance for their sins of omission and commission, their souls

are cleansed after death in purgatorial or cleansing punishments.

The suffrages of the faithful on earth can be of great help in

relieving these punishments, as for instance, the Sacrifice of the Mass,

prayers, almsgiving, and other religious deeds which, in the manner of

the Church, the faithful are accustomed to offer for others of the

faithful. Decree - 2nd Council of Lyons - 1274 AD


2nd Maccabees 12:41-45 (Old Testament Apocryphal book)

All then blessed the ways of the Lord, the just judge who brings

hidden things to light, and gave themselves to prayer, begging that the

sin committed might be fully blotted out. Next, the valiant Judas urged

the people to keep themselves free from all sin, having seen with their

own eyes the effect of the sin on those who had fallen.

After this he took a collection from them individually amounting to

nearly two thousand drachmae, and sent it to Jerusalem to have a

sacrifice for sin offered, an altogether fine and noble action, in which

he took full account of the resurrection. For if he had not expected the

fallen to rise again it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray

for the dead. Whereas if he had in view the splendid recompense for

those who make a pious end, the thought was holy and devout. This is why

he had this atonement sacrifice offered for the dead, so that they might

be released from their sin."

Matthew 12:32

Whoever says anything against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but

whoever says anything against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven,

either in this age or the age to come."

1 Corinthians 3:10-15

Thanks to God showed me I laid a foundation as a wise master-builder

might do, and now someone else is building upon it. Everyone, however,

must be careful how he builds. No one can lay a foundation other than

the one that has been laid, namely Jesus Christ. If different ones build

on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay or

straw, the work of each will be made clear. The Day will disclose it.

That day will make its appearance with fire, and fire will test the

quality of each man's work. If the building a man has raised on this

foundation still stands, he will receive his recompense: if a man's

building burns, he will suffer loss. He himself will be saved, but only

as one fleeing through fire."


2nd Maccabees 12:41-45

The Book of Maccabees is a portion of the apocryphal books which are

held to be inspired Scripture only be the Roman Catholic Church. As part

of their Old Testament, they were never recognized as the inspired

Scriptures by the Jewish theologians of old and they are the only books

never referred to by any of the New Testament writers or by any person

spoken of in the New Testament.

Even if they could be proven to be the inspired Word of God (which

they cannot), they would still be part of the Old Covenant dispensation

and, since Jesus, through His death, burial and resurrection, put an end

to the curse of sin for all believers, the destiny of the souls of the

faithful departed has been altered from those who merely had the hope of

the first resurrection along with the Messiah (Jesus).

Mathew 12:32

This Scripture can only be emphasizing the severity of sinning against

God's Holy Spirit. Even the Catholic Church teaches that sins cannot be

forgiven after death. Purgatory is supposed to cleanse only from the

penalty of death due to sins already forgiven. When Jesus said "either

in this age or in the age to come" the key word is "age." He didn't say

either in this life of after death. This age is the age of grace whereby

we are forgiven as a result of our faith in the atoning work of the

Cross. The next age will be the millennial reign of Christ whereby He,

along with His saints, will rule the nations with a rod of iron. During

that age as even now, the sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will

not be forgiven.

To quote this Scripture as proof of purgatory is illogical and


1 Corinthians 3:10-15

These passages speak of the value of our works for rewards. It is the

quality of our work which will be tried as by fire, not we ourselves.

Our trial is on earth to see if we will live righteously before God.

According to this Scripture, all that we have built, if it is on any

weak foundation, will be burned. It says nothing of punishment but only

that whatever is not done for Christ will be destroyed.

The Day (capital D) is the name commonly given in Scripture for the

Great Day of the Lord which will be the time of His coming again to the

earth in order to restore it unto Himself. At that time all the works of

men will be judged whether they are acceptable to God or not. If they

are found to be wanting in their quality they will not stand for rewards

but will be as chaff to be burned up. Even though all the works of a man

may be burned, the man himself may be saved if he has the covering of the

blood of Jesus Christ and His worthiness according to faith.

He will stand destitute of rewards though, as one fleeing through a

fire and losing all of his possessions.

To use this Scripture as a proof of purgatory is to say then that the

Day of the Lord is when purgatory will be in effect: not today. This is

not what the Roman Catholic Church teaches. It teaches that purgatory is

real today.


The following Scriptures tell us of the confidence we have in the

complete atonement for our sins by Jesus Christ. They offer proof that,

once our sins are forgiven, they are never remembered by God.

Psalm 103:12,13

As far as the east is from the west, so far has he put our

transgressions from us. As a father has compassion on his children, so

the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.

1 John 1:9

But if we acknowledge our sins, he who is just can be trusted to

forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrong.

Romans 8:1

There is no condemnation now for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Acts 13:38,39

You must realize, my brothers, that it is through him (Jesus) that the

forgiveness of sins is being proclaimed to you, including the remission

of all those charges you could never be acquitted of under the law of

Moses. In him every believer is acquitted.

Romans 3:21-28

But now the justice of God has been manifested apart from the law,

even though both law and prophets bear witness to it - that justice of

God which works through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. All

men have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God. All men are now

undeservedly justified by the gift of God, through the redemption wrought

in Christ Jesus. Through this blood, God made him the means of expiation

for all who believe. He did so to manifest his own justice, for the sake

of remitting sins committed in the past - to manifest his justice in the

present, by way of forbearance, so that he might be just and might

justify those who believe in Jesus.

What occasion is there for boasting? It is ruled out. By what law,

the law or works? Not at all! By the law of faith. For we hold that a

man is justified by faith apart from observance of the law.

Romans 5:1-2

Now that we have been justified by faith, we are at peace with God

through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have gained access by

faith to the grace in which we now stand, and we boast of our hope for

the glory of God.

Romans 5:9

Now that we have been justified by his blood, it is all the more

certain that we shall be saved by Him from God's wrath.

Romans 5:15-19

But the gift is not like the offense. For if by the offense of the

one man (Adam) all died, much more did the grace of God and the gracious

gift of the one man, Jesus Christ abound for all. The gift is entirely

different from the sin committed by the one man. In the first case, the

sentence followed upon one offense and brought condemnation, but in the

second, the gift came after many offenses and brought acquittal. If

death began its reign through one man because of his offense, much more

shall those who receive the overflowing grace and gift of justice live

and reign through the one man, Jesus Christ.

To sum it up, then: just as a single offense brought condemnation to

all men, a single righteous act brought all men acquittal and life. Just

as through one man's disobedience all became sinners, so through one

man's obedience all shall become just..

Titus 3:5-8

But when the kindness and love of God our Saviour appeared, He saved

us; not because of any righteous deeds we had done, but because of His

mercy. He saved us through the baptism of the new birth and renewal by

the Holy Spirit. This Spirit He lavished on us through Jesus Christ our

Saviour, that we might be justified by His grace and become heirs, in

hope, of eternal life. You can depend on this to be true.

Philippians 1:21 & 23

For, to me, "life" means Christ; hence dying is so much gain.

I am strongly attracted to both: I long to be freed from this life and

to be with Christ, for that is the far better thing.

Hebrews 10:14-18

By one offering He (Jesus) has forever perfected those who are being

sanctified. The Holy Spirit attests this to us, for after saying.

"This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, says the

Lord: I will put my laws in their hearts and I will write them on their

minds." He also says,

"Their sins and their transgressions I will remember no more."

Once these have been forgiven, there is no further offering for sin.


This doctrine of a place called "Purgatory" rests heavily upon

tradition which, I realize, the Roman Catholic Church places on an equal

level with the Scriptures. The problem with this doctrine, however, is

that it actually nullifies the professed belief in the atoning work of

the Cross.

It says that Jesus suffered, bled and died a cruel death for our sins,

but that His sacrifice wasn't enough. The punishment for those sins must

still be dealt with by horrible suffering akin to a temporary lake of


To profess belief in Purgatory is to cast scorn upon the Lord's

sacrifice which was a perfect offering to satisfy God's justice.

Was it, or wasn't it?

What you choose to believe is your responsibility. Whether or not you

accept His atonement (payment, full and complete) for your sins will

determine whether or not you have any forgiveness at all.

I don't ask you to accept my determination on the matter. What I do

ask is that you search the Scriptures with an open heart and devoid of

human traditions which could cloud proper understanding.








Immaculate conception - This is the privilege and the singular grace

that divine omnipotence bestowed upon the Blessed Virgin Mary to preserve

her from original sin by infusing into her soul sanctifying grace from

the very instant of conception in the womb of her mother, St. Anne.

Through this, Mary, who was to be the Blessed Mother of the Son of God,

was conceived in the state of holiness and justice. This effect, caused

by the act of God, resulted in her being free of the consequences of

original sin, such as the slavery to the devil, subjection to

concupiscence, and darkness of the intellect. Further, Mary was not

subject to the law of suffering and death, which are penalties of the sin

of human nature, even though she knew these, experienced them, and

endured them for our salvation. The dogma of the Immaculate Conception

was defined for the Universal Church's belief by Pius IX, Dec. 8, 1854,

as follows: "We declare, announce, and define that the doctrine which

states that the Blessed Virgin Mary was preserved, in the first instant

of her conception,, by a singular grace and privilege of God Omnipotent

and because of the merits of Jesus Christ the Savior of the human race,

free from all stain of original sin, is revealed by God and must be

believed firmly and with constancy by all the faithful."

The Catholic Encyclopedia / Nelson - page 285


The sinlessness of Christ's mother had been recognized from the

beginning, but was little dwelled upon except in the writings of the

Greek and Latin Fathers when they described her perfect holiness and

compared her with the first woman, Eve. They spoke of her as "holy,

innocent, most pure, inviolate, undefiled, immaculate," in a way that

left no doubt they considered her absolutely without sin.

The Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - page 151



Romans 3:23-25

All men have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God. All men are

now undeservedly justified by the gift of God, through the redemption

wrought in Christ Jesus. Through his blood, God made him the means of

expiation for all who believe.

Luke 11:27,28

While he was saying this a woman from the crowd called out, "Blest is

the womb that bore you and the breasts that nursed you!" "Rather," he

replied, "blest are they who hear the word of God and keep it."

Matthew 11:11

I solemnly assure you, history has not known a man born of woman

greater than John the Baptizer. Yet the least born into the kingdom of

God is greater than he.

Luke 1:46,47

Then Mary said: "My being proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my

spirit finds joy in God my savior,.."

Matthew 12:46-50

He was still addressing the crowds when his mother and his brothers

appeared outside to speak with him. Someone said to him, "Your mother

and your brothers are standing out there and they wish to speak to you."

He said to the one who had told him, "Who is my mother? Who are my

brothers?" Then, extending his hand toward his disciples, he said,

"There are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of my

heavenly Father is brother and sister and mother to me."

Luke 2:48-50

When his parents saw him they were astonished, and his mother said to

him: "Son, why have you done this to us? You see that your father and I

have been searching for you in sorrow." He said to them: "Why did you

search for me? Did you not know I had to be in my Father's house?" But

they did not grasp what he said to them.


The most disturbing thing about this doctrine is that, according to

the pope (Pius IX who defined it, every member of the Church must believe

it firmly and with constancy (firmness of mind without deviation). This

means, by its very definition, that, unless you hold to this doctrine

which cannot be supported by Scripture, you cannot be a member in good

standing of the Body of Christ. Combining this with other teachings of

the Roman Catholic Church it becomes impossible to attain salvation

because you would be considered a heretic for denying the teaching

authority of the Church.

Consequently your salvation not only rests upon belief in the

atonement for your sins on the Cross, it must necessarily depend upon

your faith in Mary's sinlessness. This in itself should be enough to

dissuade a person from holding any stock in the authority of men to teach

who can so easily compromise the essential doctrine of redemption through

Jesus Christ alone.

But for those who need proof or at least a reasonable rebuttal to this

idea of Mary's immaculate conception, let's examine it in light of the

few Scriptures that I have cited as evidence to the contrary.

When it says in Romans 3:23 that all men have sinned it doesn't just

mean the male gender. In fact, the Roman Catholic New American Bible is

the only edition that uses the word "men." All others simply state "all

have sinned," or somewhat similar renditions. Nowhere, of course, does

it say that Mary was any exception. If this were so important a

doctrine, it would seem that the Lord would have made mention of it

somewhere in His revealed Word.

In Luke 11:27,28 Jesus is definitely saying that everyone who hears

the word of God and keeps it is blessed even above His own mother. Her

blessing was in being chosen as a vessel to bear the human body of the

Son of God. That, in itself, made her blessed above all other women.

Yet any person, man or woman, can be considered as blessed as Mary if

they will recognize Jesus Christ as the means of their salvation and live


Matthew 11:11 tells us that, in the greater than any other born of

women. Here, again, only the New American Bible uses the word "man"

where all others simply say "none other" or something similar. Nowhere

in the original is there any implication that only males are being

referred to. If this is the case, then we must understand that Jesus is

saying that no one who had been born up to that time was a greater human

than John the Baptist. Naturally the balance of Scripture allows for His

own exception but it doesn't allow for Mary's.

In Luke 1:46,47 Mary, by her own words, acknowledges her need for

salvation because she calls God her savior. Even God is not a savior to

anyone who is without sin simply because they would already be enjoying

His fellowship just as the angels. One does not need a savior unless he

or she needs to be saved from something. The reason mankind needs a

savior is to release us from the penalty of sin and its influence in our


Jesus again placed all who will do the will of the Father on an equal

footing with his mother and his brothers when, in Matthew 12, He pointed

to his disciples and said that they are His brothers, sisters and mother.

That means that you can be accounted holy and pure if you will first of

all accept the salvation that Jesus provided for you by His one time

sacrifice on the Cross of Calvary and allow the Holy Spirit to gain

control of your will so that you may be found doing the will of the


An important aspect of the doctrine of Mary's immaculate conception is

that she was free of darkness of the intellect because of her

sinlessness. If this is the case she most certainly would have been able

to grasp what Jesus was telling her in Luke 2:49 about having to be in

His Father's house. Yet Mary was just as puzzled as Joseph in not

understanding the reasons for His behavior.

It must be borne in mind that all subsequent doctrines relating to the

mother of Jesus are inexorably linked to this doctrine. Her perpetual

virginity, her assumption into heaven, her position as Mother of God, can

not stand the test of logic or God's justice if this one doctrine of her

immaculate conception is not true.

Whatever you choose to believe you must understand that any doctrine

that places a human being in a position of special favor with God, by its

very nature nullifies the professed belief in the atoning work of Jesus

on the Cross. In order to have salvation you must receive the gift by

faith in Him only. To say that someone, as in this case, can be

conceived without sin is to say that the cross is meaningless simply

because God could have created each individual in the same manner thereby

avoiding the agony of Calvary. Yet this is contrary to His basic law of

justice where He says that, "without the shedding of blood there is no

forgiveness." These words are recorded in Hebrews 9:22.








Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary - The doctrine of the taking up

of the body and soul of the Mother of God into heaven after her death was

an early teaching of the fathers and of special interest to all

Christians. Tradition and theological reasoning show that the privilege

of Assumption was revealed implicitly. On Nov.1, 1950 Pope Pius XII

declared the Assumption of the Bless Mother of God a doctrine of faith.

The solemnity is celebrated on Aug.15 and is a holy day of obligation.

The feast was celebrated by the Christians of the seventh century,

based on the Scriptures. In the O.T., the singularity of the Blessed

Mother as the "woman" was declared (cf. Gen.3:15) as being through whom

the redemption would become fulfilled. The N.T. declares that redemption

(Lu.1; 1 Jn.3:9) and the Blessed Virgin Mary was "full of grace" and

could not be perfect as God foretold unless she remained incorruptible

(cf. 1 Cor.15:54-57). Pope Alexander III (1159 to 1181) wrote: "Mary

conceived without detriment to her virginal modesty, brought forth her

Son without pain, passed hence without decay, according to the word of

the angel, or rather God speaking by the angel, that she might be shown

to be full, not half-full, of grace." The Catholic Encyclopedia / Nelson

- page 56


Almost as soon as Pius IX defined the dogma of Mary's Immaculate

Conception, Rome was besieged with petitions for defining her bodily

Assumption. It is calculated that from 1870 to 1940, over four hundred

bishops, eighty thousand priests and religious, and more than eight

million of the laity had formally signed requests asking for the


As a consequence, on May 1, 1946, Pius XII sent the following

questionnaire to all the bishops of the Catholic world: "Do you,

Venerable Brethren, in view of the wisdom and prudence that is yours,

judge that the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin can be proposed

and defined as a dogma of faith; and do you, along with your clergy and

faithful, desire it?"

Within a few months, the replies received in Rome were "almost

unanimous" in favor of the definition. The Pope drew the inevitable

conclusion from the consent of those whom "the Holy Spirit has placed as

bishops to rule the Church of God."

On November 1, 1950, Pius XII answered these requests of the Catholic

Hierarchy with a solemn definition that "by the authority of our Lord

Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by Our Own

authority, We pronounce, declare, and define as divinely revealed dogma:

The Immaculate Mother of God, Mary ever Virgin, after her life on earth,

was assumed, body and soul to the glory of heaven." (Encyclical

Munificentissimus Deus)

The spontaneous reaction of the faithful was gratitude for the exalted

honor paid to the Mother of God. The Pope's own sentiments were

expressed to the bishops gathered in Rome for the occasion when he told

them the joy he felt over the proclamation and the assurance it gave him

that Mary would obtain the graces of which mankind stood in such dire

need. On the level of piety and devotion, therefore, Mary's Assumption

was only the climax in a series of definitions to honor the Blessed

Virgin, beginning with the divine maternity at Ephesus and terminating in

the past century with the doctrine of her Immaculate Conception. But

dogmatically the Constitution of Munificentissimus Deus has a much deeper


Pope Pius defined Mary's Assumption as a truth divinely revealed. Of

the two sources of revelation, theologians commonly say the assumption

was implicit in Tradition, in spite of the practical absence of

documentary evidence before A.D. 300. Yet the Pope finally declared that

the doctrine was in revelation. How do we know? On the answer to this

question rests a new insight into Christian Tradition that had been

gaining momentum since the eighteenth century. Briefly stated, Tradition

is coming to be identified more with the Church's magisterium or

teaching office and less exclusively as the source along with Scripture,

of the truths of salvation. Behind this new emphasis is a development of

dogma since the Council of Trent that reveals hidden depths in the

Mystical Body of Christ. The Church is not only the guardian of a faith

once and for all given to the apostles, but expositor of that faith in

every age to the end of time.

In August of the same year that he defined the Assumption, the Pope

laid down the principles that guided the Marian definition. The Church's

teaching authority, he said in Humani Generis, is not confined to

reflecting or consolidating the past. It is also, and especially, the

vital present-day function of an organism animated by the Spirit of God.

"Together with the sources of revelation (Scripture and tradition) God

has given to his Church a living magisterium to elucidate and explain

what is contained in the deposit of faith only obscurity, we may add, is

unimportant. Given this faculty by her founder, whose Spirit of truth

abides with her at all times, the Church can infallibly discern what

belongs to revelation no matter how cryptic the contents my be.

Consequently, when Pius XII defined the Assumption, he did more than

propose the doctrine for acceptance by the faithful or give them a new

motive for devotion to the Blessed Mother. He indicated the Church's

right to authorize a legitimate development in doctrine and piety that

scandalizes Protestants and may even surprise believing Catholics. The

Catholic Catechism / Doubleday - pages 160-161

The Passion of our Lord found its echo in the compassion of his Holy

Mother. In truth the sorrows of Mary, the sorrows of her trans-pierced

heart, were necessary not only that many many thoughts should be revealed

of sorrowing men and women, but also for her own perfect sanctification.

Her soul had to be made perfect in the furnace of trial and tribulation.

As in all thins else so pre-eminently in this must she resemble our Lord,

that he was the Man of Sorrows and acquainted with grief. Of all the

redeemed his Mother must be nearest to his Cross, not only on Calvary,

but also in every hour of her earthly pilgrimage.

But that pilgrimage, both for Jesus and for Mary, at length was over.

And now that our Lord is glorified in his Kingdom, every tear that his

Mother shed on earth shall be wiped away by his pierced hand, and changed

into a jewel in the crown upon her peerless brow. Mary must die, for

this is the lot of mortals. "It is appointed unto man to die, and after

death the judgment."; and as Jesus died, so will his Mother die, for in

all things, so far as may be, shall her lot be like to his; moreover,

since all her children must pass one day through the gate of death, so

bitter to human nature, so their Mother swill go before them, treading

the same path. but in her passing hence there will be for her no

bitterness, death will lead her straight to God. she had waited,

obedient to the will of God who would have her remain a while on earth,

the Apostles' Queen. But now the chains which held her captive at length

were broken and her sinless soul winged its flight to be with her Son for

ever. And Mary's judgment: "Well done, good and faithful servant."

Were these words for which all Christ's servants wait expectant ever

spoken as when they were addressed to her, who alone was crowned in

heaven as the Mother of her Lord?

The bodies of the holy Apostles, of the Martyrs who shed their blood

for Christ, of men and women famed for their sanctity, were to be

carefully preserved and venerated in the Church from the first beginnings

of Christianity. Of the Mother of God no relics should remain upon upon

the earth. Mary was taken up, body and soul, to the unveiled presence of

her Son. she was the mystic Ark of the covenant which God had

sanctified. The body of the virgin Most Holy from which the Holy Spirit

had formed the body of Christ should not be permitted to see corruption.

Behold the Queen in her beauty by the side of her Son, as already the

Psalmist saw her in prophetic vision, in a vesture of gold wrought about

with divers colors. She is the eldest daughter of the Father, and the

beloved Mother of the Son, and the chosen Spouse of the Everlasting


We, too, have to die and to meet Christ in judgment. We trust to be

greeted with forgiveness and love as we enter into his Kingdom. He will

not reject us, whose arms were extended wide for us upon the Cross of

pain. "Who is he that shall condemn? Christ Jesus who died for us?"


But if, notwithstanding all, our hearts fail within us at the thought

of our sins and miseries, we will entreat our dear Mother who is also the

Mother of our Judge, to be to us Felix caeli porta, the gate of a happy

eternity, that when all is passing and death is near, she may turn her

eyes of mercy towards us, and show unto us at length the ever-blessed

Fruit of her womb, Jesus, teaching us to trust Him absolutely and to the

full. So may it be for us all we beseech thee, O loving, O kind, O sweet

Virgin Mary.

The Teaching of the Catholic Church / Macmillan pages 547, 548



II Kings 2:9-12

When they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, "Ask for whatever I

may do for you, before I am taken from you." Elisha answered, "May I

receive a double portion of your spirit." "You have asked that is not

easy," he replied. "Still, if your see me taken up from you, your wish

will be granted; otherwise not." As they walked on conversing, a flaming

chariot and and flaming horses some between them, and Elijah went up to

heaven in a whirlwind. When Elisha saw it happen he cried out, "My

father! my father! Israel's chariots and drivers!" But when he could no

longer see him, Elisha gripped his own garment and tore it in two.

Genesis 5:22-24

Enoch lived three hundred years after the birth of Methuselah, and he

had other sons and daughters. The whole lifetime of Enoch was three

hundred and sixty-five years. Then Enoch walked with God, and he was no

longer here, for God took him.

1 Corinthians 15:51-52

Not all of us shall fall asleep, but all of us are to be changed - in

an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, at the sound of the last trumpet.

The trumpet will sound and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we

shall be changed.


One might wonder what 2 Kings 2:9-11 and Genesis 5:22-24 have to do

with the doctrine of the Assumption of Mary. Actually, they are an

indication that the teachings around which this doctrine revolves are

faulty. Notice that the Roman Catholic Church approves the teaching that

Mary must die and, although she is far above every creature, even death

cannot be spared her.

Yet, both Enoch and Elijah were taken to heaven without seeing death.

If God favored Mary above all others why would he not have spared her

having to see death? But even more significant than this is the fact

that death is the penalty for sin. Without sin there would be no death.

The fact that Mary died at all, whether her body saw corruption or not,

can only attest to the fact that she had to have been born in sin just as

all humans are. Enoch and Elijah are proof that God can spare death to

His children if He so sees fit in spite of the fact that it is the

consequence of sin. Elijah's and Enoch's lives were so exemplary that

God saw fit to take them without their seeing death. If Mary's life was

so much more exemplary than theirs, which the Roman Catholic Church

teaches, then she would not have had to see death either.

Jesus was the exception on the other side. He was the only person who

didn't deserve to die. Yet, God made Him sin for our sins and hung Him

on a cross to pay the penalty for those sins. He could not die a natural

death because His flesh was sinless. He had to be put to death in order

to taste of it for our sakes. What a sacrifice! That God would become

man for worms like us and allow Himself to suffer the humiliation and

torture of death as a criminal. How can we escape if we neglect so great

a salvation that He has provided for us?

We cannot forget 1 Corinthians 15:52. Here we are told that even all

the members of Christ's Body who are alive on the day that He returns

will be changed into their incorruptible bodies without seeing death. So

God, again, is indicating to us that the sting of death is still at His

option for individuals although there are only two recorded instances

where He actually has, in the past, nullified the death penalty for those

He considered especially anointed.

Probably more significant than the doctrine of the Assumption itself,

is the impact that the Roman Catholic Church feels it has had upon her

authority to teach from whatever motive she deems suitable. In her own

words, "Tradition is coming to be identified more with the Church's

magisterium or teaching office and less exclusively as the source along

with Scripture, of the truths of salvation." This can only mean that the

Roman Catholic Church regards it teaching office as more reliable than

the Scriptures. The reason they can feel justified in this position is

that they consider themselves the only true deposit of faith and,

consequently, whatever they say has to be the truth. This is held to

regardless of the obscurity of the tradition as their own words reveal.

For those who don't know what it means when the Church says that a

particular day is a holy day of obligation, it simply is a law that

obliges all true believers to attend a Mass and observe that day in a

special manner in honor of the occasion for which it is named. In other

words, not only are members obligated to acknowledge the proposed truth

of the dogma but they are bound under the penalty of mortal sin to

observe it in a special way. Should one not do so and die without

confessing this sin he will be judged condemned to Hell for eternity

regardless of the merits of Christ's death on the Cross for his sins. In

effect, then, this dogma, because of its carrying the penalty of mortal

sin according to faith, nullifies the essential doctrine of faith in the

atoning work of Christ on the Cross. It says that, in order to maintain

fellowship with God you must honor the mother of Jesus with special days

of devotion. Should you not do so you can lose your salvation.

This fact cannot be denied. It is a condition which men have attached

to the saving work of the Saviour in dying for our sins.

Yet Paul tells us in Romans that we are justified by faith without the

deeds of the law. In this case, which takes precedent - the Word of God

or the laws of men?

As in all other cases, you must be the final arbiter of that question

for your own life. I would encourage you to take the Lord's words at

their face value. "If the Son frees you, you will really be free."

(John 8:36)


1. The New American Bible, St. Joseph's Edition (New York: Catholic book

Publishing Co., 1970).

2. Vatican II: The Conciliar and Post Conciliar Documents, Austin

Flannery, O.P., ed. Northport, NY: Costello Publishing Co. 1975).

3. The Catholic Encylopedia, Robert Broderick, ed. (New York: Thomas

Nelson, Inc., 1976).

4. John A. Hardon, S.J., The Catholic Catechism (New York: Doubleday and

Co., Inc., 1975).

5. 1979 Catholic Almanac, Felician A. Foy, O.F.M., ed. (Huntington, IN:

Our Sunday Visitor, Inc., 1978).

6. The Teaching of the Catholic Church - Vol. 1, George D. Smith,

D.D\Ph.D., ed. (NY: The Macmillan Co., 1960).


These documents are free from , providing free webcontent for websites around the world!. copy freely with this link intact.