If it weren't for purgatory I don't know what I would do. According to

the Second Vatican Council, I "may attain to salvation through faith,

baptism and the observance of the commandments."1 I was baptized as a

baby, so I have that one down, but I can't say that my faith is always

strong, and about keeping the commandments, well ... sometimes I take the

Lord's name in vain and I do not always keep the sabbath holy. The

priest told me one time that I need to love my neighbor as myself as

Jesus told us to do in the Bible, but that is pretty hard to do. I

don't think that I can love my foreman at work, and that old girl friend

of mine ... no way! So that is why I am so glad there is purgatory,

because if I try to live a good life and don't quite live up to God's

standards, I will still make it to purgatory, and later heaven. Heck,

the way I understand it, even if I don't try to live a good life but have

been baptized and believe in God, I still do not have to worry about hell

because of purgatory. It's a no lose situation. Thank God for purgatory!!


You're right on one account and that is the fact that you are not able

to keep the commandments (the Law). The Bible tells us that "whoever

falls into sin on one point of the law, even though he keeps the entire

remainder, has become guilty on all counts."2 So what is being said here

is that if you are going to try and live your life by the ten

commandments, which are a part of the law of God, you are then

responsible for the whole law of God in which there were 613 laws or

commandments (like not eating port or shellfish, making sacrifices for

your sins, etc.). Can this be done? Well, if we look throughout the

Catholic Bible, it can be seen that keeping the law cannot be done,3 but

I suppose that doesn't really matter because there is always purgatory.

Right? Well friend, let's look at what the Bible says happens after

death. The Bible tells us that "it is appointed that man die once, and

after death be judged."4 So if after death man is judged by God, that

leaves no room for time in purgatory.


If you're judged, that means you will be required to pay for your

sins. What will your payment be? The Catholic Bible tells us that those

who were judged according to their conduct on earth were the ones whose

names were not found in the book of the living, and "anyone whose name

was not found inscribed in the book of the living was hurled into the

pool of fire"5 for eternity. So as you can see, those who are judged

will be punished for eternity.


That is a good question, and the answer to that is no. Anyone's name

who was not found in the book of the living was judged, but the people

whose names were in the book were not judged. Why? Because these people

made a choice that you also can make, and that choice was to accept the

payment that Jesus Christ made for every person's sins from Adam and Eve

up to the last person that will ever be born. How did they do that?

Well, these people realized that they were sinners and that after death

would come judgment for their sins. Because of this they needed a Savior

which was Jesus, because Jesus Himself said that God did not send Him

into the world to condemn the world, but through Him the world might be

saved.6 Jesus also said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no

one comes to the Father but through me."7 So they knew that Jesus was

the only way.


By accepting Jesus' payment for your sins. Just go to God in prayer

and tell Him that you are trusting Jesus Christ as your Savior and that

you are accepting His payment for your sins. Do this with a sincere

heart and you to will be saved.

Flannery, Austin, ed. Vatican Council II. Boston:

St. Paul Editions, l975. pg. 378

2James 2:10

3Romans 2:17-3:10

4Hebrews 9:27

5Revelation 20:11-15

6John 3:17

7John 14:6

References taken from New American Catholic Bible.


Copyright 1987 by Randy Hillebrand

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