Is Catholic Penance Necessary for Salvation and Forgiveness? What about Forgiveness for Abortion and Suicide?

 



IS CATHOLIC PENANCE NECESSARY FOR SALVATION?
CAN ONLY PRIESTS AND THE CATHOLIC CHURCH FORGIVE SINS?


The Sacrament of Conversion, Penance, Confession, Forgiveness, and Reconciliation (CCC 1423-24)


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog )


“Is Catholic Penance Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Passages of The Catechism of the Catholic Church to Consider:

  • “The sacrament of Penance is necessary for salvation for this who have fallen after Baptism” (CCC 980)
  • “the Church possesses the power to forgive the sins of the baptized and exercises it through bishops and priests normally in the sacrament of Penance” (CCC 986)
  • “In the forgiveness of sins, both priests and sacraments are instruments through which our Lord Jesus Christ, the only author and liberal giver of salvation, wills to use in order to efface our sins and give us the grace of justification” (CCC 987)
  • “reconciliation with the Church is inseparable from reconciliation with God” (CCC 1445)
  • “those who, since Baptism, have fallen into grave sin and have thus lost their baptismal grace…the sacrament of Penance offers a new possibility to convert and recover the grace of justification.” (CCC 1446)
  • “When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all else, contrition is called ‘perfect’ (contrition of charity).  Such contrition remits venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal sins if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramental confession as soon as possible.” (CCC 1452)
  • “imperfect contrition cannot obtain the forgiveness of grave sins” (CCC 1453)
  • “Confession to a priest is an essential part of the sacrament of Penance” (CCC 1456)
  • “the faithful is bound by an obligation faithfully to confess serious sins at least once a year” (CCC 1457)
  • “without being strictly necessary, confession of everyday faults (venial sins) is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church” (CCC 1458)
  • “whoever confesses his sins…is already working with God” (CCC 1458)
  • “Absolution takes away sin” (CCC 1459)
  • “the sinner must still recover his full spiritual health by doing something more to make amends for the sin: he must ‘make satisfaction for’ or ‘expiate’ his sins.  This satisfaction is also called ‘penance’” (CCC 1459)
  • “the penance the confessor imposes…must correspond as far as possible with the gravity and nature of the sins committed.  It can consist of prayer, an offering, works of mercy, service of neighbor, voluntary self-denial, sacrifices…such penances help configure us to Christ…they allow us to become co-heirs with the risen Christ” (CCC 1460)
  • “Indeed bishops and priests, by future of the sacrament of the Holy Orders, have the power to forgive all sins” (CCC 1461)
  • “Certain particularly grave sins incur excommunication” (CCC 1463)
  • “In danger of death any priest…can absolve from every sin and excommunication” (CCC 1463)
  • “the whole power of the sacrament of Penance consists in restoring us to God’s grace” (CCC 1468)
  • “In converting to Christ through penance and faith, the sinner passes from death to life and ‘does not come into judgment.’ (CCC 1470)
  • “those who approach the sacrament of Penance obtain pardon from God’s mercy” (CCC 1422)
  • “It is called the sacrament of conversion because it makes sacramentally present Jesus’ call to conversion, the first step in returning to the Father from whom one has strayed by sin.” (CCC 1423)
  • “It is called the sacrament of Penance, since it consecrates the Christian sinner’s personal and ecclesial steps of conversion, penance, and satisfaction.” (CCC 1423)
  • “It is called the sacrament of confession, since the disclosure of confession of sins to a priest is an essential element of this sacrament.” (CCC 1424)
  • “It is called the sacrament of forgiveness, since by the priest’s sacramental absolution God grants the penitent ‘pardon and peace.’” (CCC 1424) 
  • “It is called the sacrament of Reconciliation, because it imparts to the sinner the love of God who reconciles” (CCC 1424)
  • “This is the struggle of conversion directed towards holiness and eternal life to which the Lord never ceases to call us.” (CCC 1426)
  • “This endeavor of conversion is not just a human work. It is the movement of a ‘contrite heart,’ drawn and moved by grace to respond to the merciful love of God who loved us first.” (CCC 1428)
  • “One who desires to obtain reconciliation with God and with the Church, must confess to a priest all the unconfessed grave sins he remembers after having carefully examined his conscience.” (CCC 1493)
  • “The confessor proposes the performance of certain acts of ‘satisfaction’ or ‘penance’ to be performed by the penitent in order to repair the harm caused by sin and to re-establish habits befitting a disciple of Christ.” (CCC 1494)
  • Only priests who have received the faculty of absolving from the authority of the Church can forgive sins in the name of Christ.” (1495)
  • “The spiritual effects of the sacrament of Penance are: - reconciliation with God by which the penitent recovers grace; - reconciliation with the Church; - remission of the eternal punishment incurred by mortal sins; - remission, at least in part, of temporal punishments from sin; - peace and serenity of conscience, and spiritual consolation; - an increase of spiritual strength for the Christian battle.” (CCC 1496)


“Is Catholic Penance Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Scriptures to Consider:

  • Romans 8:39 "nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (ESV)
  • 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (ESV)
  • James 5:16 “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (ESV)
  • Luke 7:48–50 “And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” [49] Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, ‘Who is this, who even forgives sins?” [50] And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’” (ESV)
  • Romans 5:8–11 “[10] For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. [11] More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.” (ESV)
  • Romans 8:33–34 “Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. [34] Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” (ESV)
  • Romans 8:1–2 “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. [2] For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” (ESV)
  • Romans 10:1–4 "Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. [2] For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. [3] For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. [4] For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.” (ESV)
  • Romans 10:9–10 “because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. [10] For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (ESV)


“Is Catholic Penance Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Questions to Consider:

  • Who has the power to forgive according to the Bible?
  • What is the purpose of confessing our sins in the Bible? Who do we go to for forgiveness? (1 John 1:9) Who do we go to for accountability, prayer, and healing? (James 5:16)
  • Why do you suppose the process of confession to priest began?  What are the advantages?  What would be the dangers?  What does the Bible say?
  • After becoming a follower of Jesus, does sin separate us from the love of God?
  • When did Jesus die for us?  Why did He die for us? What does Romans 8:1-2 mean?
  • How should we feel when we realize the undeserved forgiveness Jesus has shown us?
  • What is the danger Paul mentions in Romans 10:1-4 about establishing their own righteousness?
  • How is someone saved?  How can someone know for certain they’ll go to Heaven when they die?


WHAT ABOUT ABORTION & SUICIDE?

  • “Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life.” (CCC 2272)
  • In Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter Misericordia et misera (November 20, 2016) he writes: “I henceforth grant to all priests, in virtue of their ministry, the faculty to absolve those who have committed the sin of procured abortion. The provision I had made in this regard, limited to the duration of the Extraordinary Holy Year” (http://www.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/apost_letters/documents/papa-francesco-lettera-ap_20161120_misericordia-et-misera.html)
  • If the Pope has the power to forgive the sin of abortion, why does he limit it to one year for priest? 
  • Why does abortion typically result in excommunication?  Why is the power of forgiveness restricted to Bishops on some issues like abortion?
  • Why does the Catholic Church not excommunicate politicians who endorse abortion?


  • We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives.  By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance.  The Church prays for this who have taken their own lives.” (CCC 2283)
    • If murder is a “grave sin” and “grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life” (CCC 1472), then how can suicide (self-murder) result in “eternal salvation” (CCC 2283)?
    • What is “salutary repentance”? Doesn’t biblical repentance always involve our mind and soul?  Can repentance happen after physical death?  Where is that concept in the Bible?
    • How is that distinct (and not contradictory) from the requirements of repentance and confession through a priest?  
    • Is this “exception” simply trying to tickle our “itching ears” about a tough and touchy subject?
      • 2 Timothy 4:3 “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions” (ESV)
    • Where does the Bible talk about praying for the dead?
    • SEE: “What Does the Bible Say about Abortion?” www.trustworthyword.com/what-does-the-bible-say-about-abortion 
    • SEE: “What Does the Bible Say about Suicide?”www.trustworthyword.com/suicide 


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What Does the Bible Say About Salvation by Grace Alone - Helpful and Important Scriptures (Part 4)

 HELPFUL AND IMPORTANT SCRIPTURES (Part 4)


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog)


What are the “Five Solas”

The “five solas” describe a summary of some of the major concerns and focuses of those who sought reform in the church in the 1500s.  “Sola” means alone.  They saw many things being added to the pure teachings of the Bible.  Their corrective focus was not to add to 1) Scripture 2) Christ 3) Faith 4) Grace & 5) God’s Glory when understanding God’s plans for salvation in the Gospel.  Here are some helpful verses to consider:



GRACE ALONE

  • Galatians 3:10–11 “For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.’ [11] Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for ‘The righteous shall live by faith.’” (ESV)
  • Ephesians 2:4–6 “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, [5] even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—[6] and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (ESV)
  • Ephesians 2:8–9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, [9] not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (ESV)
    • NOTE FROM ESV Study Bible: The verb form for “have been saved” (Gk. sesōsmenoi, perfect tense) communicates that the Christian’s salvation is fully secured.
  • Romans 3:24–25 “and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, [25] whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.”
  • Romans 5:8 “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (ESV)
  • Romans 5:15–17 “But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man's trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. [16] And the free gift is not like the result of that one man's sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. [17] For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.” (ESV)
  • Romans 6:15 “What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!” (ESV)
  • Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (ESV)
  • In response to claims for the Mosaic Law and Tradition to be kept by the Gentiles for salvation (specifically here is the ceremonial law of circumcision) - Peter in Acts 15:8–11 “And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, [9] and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith. [10] Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? [11] But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.” (ESV)

See also:

www.catholic.blog/scripture-alone

www.catholic.blog/christ-alone

www.catholic.blog/faith-alone

www.catholic.blog/gods-glory-alone


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Frequently Asked Catholic Questions: www.catholic.blog  


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Does Our Eucharist Help the Dead? Help Us Connect to the Dead?

 



DOES OUR EUCHARIST 
HELP THE DEAD? DO WE CONNECT TO THE DEAD THROUGH THE EUCHARIST?


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog )


“Does our Eucharist Help the Dead?” - Important Passages of The Catechism of the Catholic Church to Consider:

  • “In the intercessions, the Church indicates that the Eucharist is celebrated in communion with the whole Church in heaven and on earth, the living and the dead.” (CCC 1354)
  • “To the offering of Christ are united not only the members still here on earth, but also those already in the glory of heaven.  In communion with and commemorating the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints, the Church offers the Eucharistic sacrifice.” (CCC 1370)
  • “The Eucharistic sacrifice is also offered for the faithfully departed who ‘have died in Christ but are not yet wholly purified,’ so that they may be able to enter into the light and peace of Christ” (CCC 1371)
  • “We pray for the holy fathers and bishops who have fallen asleep, and in general for all who have fallen asleep before us,  in the belief that there is great benefit to the souls on whose behalf the supplication is offered” (CCC 1371)


Merriam-Webster’s Definitions to Consider:

Necromancy - the practice of talking to the spirits of dead people

Medium - a person through whom other persons try to communicate with the spirits of the dead

Prayer - an address (such as a petition) to God or a god in word or thought


“Does our Eucharist Help the Dead?” - Important Scriptures to Consider:

  • Deuteronomy 18:10–12 “There shall not be found among you…a medium or a necromancer or one who inquires of the dead, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD. And because of these abominations the LORD your God is driving them out before you." (ESV)
  • Leviticus 19:31 “Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the LORD your God.” (ESV)
  • Isaiah 8:19 "And when they say to you, ‘Inquire of the mediums and the necromancers who chirp and mutter,” should not a people inquire of their God? Should they inquire of the dead on behalf of the living?’” (ESV)
  • 1 Samuel 28:15 “Then Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” Saul answered, “I am in great distress, for the Philistines are warring against me, and God has turned away from me and answers me no more, either by prophets or by dreams. Therefore I have summoned you to tell me what I shall do.” (ESV)
  • 1 Chronicles 10:13–14 "So Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the LORD in that he did not keep the command of the LORD, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance. [14] He did not seek guidance from the LORD. Therefore the LORD put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse." (ESV)
  • Hebrews 7:27 "He has no need, like those high priests, to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people, since he did this once for all when he offered up himself.” (ESV) James 1:5 “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” (ESV)
  • Luke 16:30–31 “And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ [31] He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’” (ESV)


“Does our Eucharist Help the Dead?” - Important Questions to Consider:

  • How does one celebrate the Eucharist with the “living and the dead”? Where is that concept in the Bible?
  • What does the Bible say about interactions with the dead?  Sacrifices for the dead?  Conversations with the dead?  Is it possible? It is permitted? Is it forbidden?  
  • What is necromancy in the Bible? How are these descriptions of the Eucharist different or similar?
  • Why does God forbid interactions with the dead?  What is the danger?
  • In the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31) why are the dead not allowed to communicate to the living?  
  • Why is the Bible (“Moses and the Prophets”) described as the way for salvation to be communicated and not Penance, Eucharist, or Baptism?


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What Does the Bible Say About Salvation by Faith Alone? - Helpful and Important Scriptures (Part 3)

  HELPFUL AND IMPORTANT SCRIPTURES (Part 3)


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog)


What are the “Five Solas”

The “five solas” describe a summary of some of the major concerns and focuses of those who sought reform in the church in the 1500s.  “Sola” means alone.  They saw many things being added to the pure teachings of the Bible.  Their corrective focus was not to add to 1) Scripture 2) Christ 3) Faith 4) Grace & 5) God’s Glory when understanding God’s plans for salvation in the Gospel.  Here are verses explaining each of these areas:



FAITH ALONE

  • Galatians 1:9 “As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.” (ESV)
  • Galatians 2:16 “yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.” (ESV)
  • Ephesians 2:8–9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, [9] not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (ESV)
    • NOTE FROM ESV Study Bible: The verb form for “have been saved” (Gk. sesōsmenoi, perfect tense) communicates that the Christian’s salvation is fully secured.
  • James 2:17–18 “So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. [18] But someone will say, ‘You have faith and I have works.’ Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” (ESV)
  • James 2:24 “You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.” (ESV)
  • Romans 3:28 “For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.” (ESV)
    • NOTE: “Paul is using the word justified to mean “declared righteous by God.” Paul is speaking of God’s legal declaration of us as righteous as Christ’s righteousness is applied to our account. James is using the word justified to mean “being demonstrated and proved.” 
  • Ephesians 2:10 “ For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (ESV)
  • John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (ESV)
  • Romans 3:27 “Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith.” (ESV)
  • Romans 4:4–5 "Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. [5] And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness” (ESV)
  • Romans 5:19 “For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous” (ESV)


See Also:

www.catholic.blog/scripture-alone

www.catholic.blog/christ-alone

www.catholic.blog/grace-alone

www.catholic.blog/gods-glory-alone


Subscribe to “The Catholic Blog” on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC03uZywULBplunOmh4nCB2A    

Free Books for Catholics: www.catholic.blog/books 

Free Videos for Catholics: www.catholic.blog/videos 

Frequently Asked Catholic Questions: www.catholic.blog  


You can download the free eBook "A Biblical Study of The Catechism of the Catholic Church" at www.catholic.blog or purchase a Kindle, paperback, or hardback version at Amazon (www.amazon.com/gp/product/B098L1MRLK).


Is the Catholic Eucharist Necessary for Salvation? Does the Wine & Bread Literally Change into the Blood & Body of Christ?

 


IS CATHOLIC EUCHARIST 

NECESSARY FOR SALVATION?

DOES THE WINE AND BREAD LITERALLY TRANSFORM TO THE BLOOD AND FLESH OF JESUS?


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog )


“Is Catholic Eucharist Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Passages of The Catechism of the Catholic Church to Consider:

  • “Our Savior instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood.  This he did in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again” (CCC 1323)
  • “The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.’” (CCC 1324)
  • “The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it.” (CCC 1324)
  • “in the Blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch.” (CCC 1324) [NOTE: ‘Pasch’ means Passover or Easter]
  • “The Eucharist is the efficacious sign and sublime cause of that communion in the divine life and that unity of the People of God by which the Church is kept in being.” (CCC 1325)
  • Holy Sacrifice because it makes present the one sacrifice of Christ the Savior and includes the Church’s offering.” (CCC 1330)
  • Holy Communion because by this sacrifice we unite ourselves to Christ.” (CCC 1331)
  • Holy Mass (Missa) because the liturgy in which the mystery of salvation is accomplished concludes with the sending forth (missio) of the faithful.” (CCC 1332)
  • “At the heart of the Eucharistic celebration are the bread and wine that, by the words of Christ and the invocation of the Holy Spirit, become Christ’s Body and Blood.” (CCC 1333)
  • “The bread and wine are brought to the altar; they will be offered by the priest in the name of Christ in the Eucharistic sacrifice in which they will become his body and blood” (CCC 1350)
  • “The Church alone offers this pure oblation to the Creator” (CCC 1350)
  • “no one may take part in it unless he believes that what we teach is true, has received baptism for the forgiveness of sins and new birth, and lives in keeping with what Christ taught.” (CCC 1355)
  • “bread and wine which, by the power of the Holy Spirit and by the words of Christ, have become the body and blood of Christ.  Christ is thus really and mysteriously made present.” (CCC 1357)
  • “It is by conversion of the bread and wine into Christ’s body and blood that Christ becomes present in this sacrament” (CCC 1375)
  • “the making present and the sacramental offering of his unique sacrifice” (CCC 1362)
  • “Because it is the memorial of Christ’s Passover, the Eucharist is also a sacrifice… in the Eucharist Christ gives us the very body which he gave up for us on the cross, the very blood which he ‘poured our for man for the forgiveness of sins.’” (CCC 1365)
  • “The Eucharist is thus a sacrifice because it re-presents (makes present) the sacrifice of the cross, because it is its memorial and because it applies its fruit” (CCC 1366)
  • “its salutary power be applied to the forgiveness of sins we daily commit” (CCC 1366)
  • “Christ’s sacrifice present on the altar makes it possible for all generations of Christians to be united with his offering” (CCC 1368)’
  • “The Church continues to reproduce this sacrifice” (CCC 1372)
  • “the whole Christ is truly, really, and substantially contained” (CCC 1374)
  • “it has always been the conviction of the Church of God…that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood.  This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation” (CCC 1376)


“Is Catholic Eucharist Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Scriptures to Consider:

  • John 6:35 “Jesus said to them, 'I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.’” (ESV)
  • John 6:40 "For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” (ESV)
  • John 6:47–51 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. [48] I am the bread of life. [49] Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. [50] This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. [51] I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” (ESV)
  • John 6:56 “Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.” (ESV)
  • John 6:68–69 “Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, [69] and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” (ESV)
  • John 15:4 “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” (ESV)
  • 1 John 4:13 “By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.” (ESV)
  • 1 Corinthians 11:25–29 “In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” [26] For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes. [27] Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. [28] Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. [29] For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.” (ESV)
  • John 19:30 “When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” (ESV)
  • Matthew 28:20 "I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (ESV)
  • 2 Corinthians 13:5 “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” (ESV)


“Is Catholic Eucharist Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Questions to Consider:

  • Why does Jesus compare the manna in the desert with himself as “the bread of life” in John 6:35?  What does He mean by never hunger and never thirst?  Does He mean the Eucharist elements will satisfy a literal hunger and thirst?  Or is He describing spiritual salvation, peace, and life through belief and trust in Jesus as the Son of God?
  • What does Jesus describe in John 6:40 & John 6:47 as bringing eternal life?
  • Why does someone literally eat and drink something?  What is the purpose of food and drink?  Why is trust important in the process of eating?  What does the eater believe about the food?
  • Does John 6:56 mean Jesus’ literal flesh and blood?  Why does He reference the word “abide”?
  • What does John 15:4 mean by “abide”? What does that look like in a plant?  What does that look like in the Christian life?
  • Why does Peter tie Jesus’ words to “eternal life” in John 6:68-69?
  • What does it mean to be “in Christ”? What unites us to Christ?  When are we united to Christ?
  • What does it mean for Christ to be “in us”? When does that happen?
  • What does 1 John 4:13 say is the evidence of union with Christ?  How does this counter the Catholic concept that union with God can only happen through the Eucharist (CCC 1331)?
    • Here are some more helpful Bible passages on our union with Christ: 2 Corinthians 5:17, 12:2, 13:5; John 15:4, 5, 7; 1 Corinthians 15:22; Galatians 2:20, 3:28; Ephesians 1:4, 2:10, 3:17; Philippians 3:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:16; 1 John 4:13; Colossians 1:27; Romans 8:10
  • When tasting the Eucharist, does the texture or taste change with the substance?  If the wine and the bread is literally transforming into the blood and flesh of Christ, then why does the texture and taste remain as wine and bread?
  • Why is the Eucharist limited to the Catholic Church alone for those in good standing?  Is that what the Bible teaches in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34?
  • Does 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 describe the elements actually transforming in substance?  Does it describe Jesus actually being present with them during that remembrance?
  • Does it describe the Church bringing judgment or the Lord bringing judgment?  Does it describe individual discernment and accountability or the Church exercising oversight on who is allowed to take communion?
  • Why does 1 Corinthians 11:25–29 say eat and drink the “bread and cup” but then switch to “guilty concerning the body and blood” and then back to “bread and cup” again?  
  • Is it more about “proclamation” and “remembrance” (1 Cor 11) as the purpose or an “efficacious” and “present..sacramental offering” (CCC)? Why the stark contrast in terms?
  • Does the Bible say Jesus’ sacrifice needs to be reproduced repeatedly? What did Jesus mean on the cross when He said “it is finished” (John 19:30)? 
  • What does Jesus mean when He says “I am with you always” (Matthew 28:20) and that “Jesus Christ is in you” (2 Cor 13:5)?  Is that only when the Eucharist is offered?  Or is He always present with believers through His Spirit?


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What the Bible Says About Christ Alone as the Cause of Our Salvation - Helpful and Important Scriptures (Part 2)

 HELPFUL AND IMPORTANT SCRIPTURES (Part 2)


The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog)


What are the “Five Solas”

The “five solas” describe a summary of some of the major concerns and focuses of those who sought reform in the church in the 1500s during the “Protestant Reformation.”  “Sola” means alone and was used to define the essential elements of the Christian faith.  The “reformers” of the day saw many things being added to the pure teachings of the Bible.  Their corrective focus was found in their theological convictions about

 1) Scripture 2) Faith 3) Grace  4) Christ  5) God’s Glory 

when understanding God’s plans for salvation in the Gospel.



CHRIST ALONE

The Who (Cause) of Our Salvation


God reveals Himself sufficiently to us through His Son Jesus.  God provides salvation and forgiveness through Jesus alone, not through human priests or spiritual leaders.  We do not rely on a church, priests, or sacraments to know God not to experience the joy of His salvation.  Jesus is our perfect high priest who is the only way to His Father in Heaven.  Salvation is only found in the name of Jesus and no other human name or church name is necessary for forgiveness.


  • John 1:14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (ESV)
  • John 1:17–18 “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. [18] No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.”
  • John 14:6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (ESV)
  • Acts 4:12 “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (ESV)
  • Romans 10:9–10 “because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. [10] For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (ESV)
  • Romans 10:13–15 “For ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ [14] How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? [15] And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” (ESV)
  • 2 John 9 "Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.” (ESV)
  • Revelation 19:16 “On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords” (ESV)
  • Hebrews 4:14 “Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.” (ESV)
  • Galatians 3:13 "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us”
  • 1 Timothy 2:5 "For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (ESV)
  • Revelation 5:9–10 “And they sang a new song, saying, ‘Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, [10] and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” (ESV)
  • Colossians 1:18 “And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.” (ESV)


See Also:

www.catholic.blog/scripture-alone

www.catholic.blog/faith-alone

www.catholic.blog/grace-alone

www.catholic.blog/gods-glory-alone


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Is Catholic Confirmation Necessary to Go to Heaven? To Receive the Holy Spirit?

 IS CATHOLIC CONFIRMATION NECESSARY FOR SALVATION? DOES CATHOLIC CONFIRMATION CONFER THE HOLY SPIRIT?






The Catholic Blog - Helping people find answers to the most common questions about Catholicism with answers from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Bible. (www.catholic.blog )


“Is Catholic Confirmation Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Passages of The Catechism of the Catholic Church to Consider:

  • “the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace” (CCC 1285)
  • “the apostles, in fulfillment of Christ’s will, imparted to the newly baptized by the laying on of hands the gift of the Spirit that completes the grace of Baptism” (CCC 1288)
  • “The imposition of hands is rightly recognized by the Catholic tradition as the origin of the sacrament of Confirmation, which in a certain way perpetuates the grace of Pentecost in the Church.” (CCC 1288)
  • “The term confirmation suggests that this sacrament both confirms baptism and strengthens baptismal grace” (CCC 1289)
  • “the effect of the sacrament of Confirmation is the special outpouring of the Holy Spirit at once granted to the apostles on the day of Pentecost” (CCC 1302)
  • “Confirmation brings an increase and deepening of the baptismal grace” (CCC 1303)
  • “Confirmation … roots us more deeply in the divine filiation which makes us cry, ‘Abba! Father!” (CCC 1303)
  • “Confirmation … unites us more firmly to Christ” (CCC 1303)
  • “Confirmation … increases the gifts of the Holy Spirit” (CCC 1303)
  • “Baptism which it completes” (CCC 1304)
  • “without Confirmation and Eucharist, Baptism is certainly valid and efficacious, but Christian initiation remains incomplete” (CCC 1306)
  • “One should receive the sacrament of Penance in order to be cleansed for the gift of the Holy Spirit” (CCC 1310)
  • “in danger of death children should be confirmed even if they have not yet attained the age of discretion” (CCC 1307)
  • “If a Christian is in danger of death, any priest can give him Confirmation.  Indeed the Church desires that none of her children, even the youngest, should depart this world without having been perfected by the Holy Spirit with the gift of Christ’s fullness.” (CCC 1314)
  • “Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit” (CCC 1316)


“Is Catholic Confirmation Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Scriptures to Consider:

  • 1 Corinthians 12:13 “For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.” (ESV)
  • 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (ESV)
  • Acts 8:14–17 “Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, [15] who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, [16] for he had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. [17] Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit.” (ESV)
  • Acts 8:18–24 “Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money, [19] saying, ‘Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.’ [20] But Peter said to him, ‘May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! [21] You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. [22] Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you. [23] For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity.' [24] And Simon answered, ‘Pray for me to the Lord, that nothing of what you have said may come upon me.’” (ESV)
  • Acts 19:4–6 “And Paul said, 'John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.” [5] On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. [6] And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying.’” (ESV)
  • Ephesians 1:13–14 “In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, [14] who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.” (ESV)
  • Romans 8:9 “You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” (ESV)
  • Romans 8:38–39 “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, [39] nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (ESV)
  • John 3:5–8 “Jesus answered, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. [6] That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. [7] Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ [8] The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.’” (ESV)
  • 1 Corinthians 6:19 “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?” (ESV)


“Is Catholic Confirmation Necessary for Salvation?” - Important Questions to Consider:

  • If someone does not go through their confirmation, is their baptism incomplete?
  • If someone does not go through confirmation, do they ever receive the Holy Spirit?
  • In Acts 8:14-17 we read a description where the people of Samaria had heard and received the word of God and been baptized in the name of Jesus.  The Holy Spirit doesn’t come until Peter and John arrive and lay hands on the believers.  In this one unique situation, the Holy Spirit didn’t arrive until the apostles did.  Why do you think that was so?  
  • Read Acts 8:18-24 to see what happens next.  Could it be that in this one unique situation the Lord held back His Spirit to protect the people from the error of Simon the Magician?  That the presence of the apostles was to protect the unity of the early church in explaining more fully the power of God’s Spirit?  How is the “intent of the heart” connected with saving faith in Jesus?
  • In Acts 19:1-7 at Ephesus we read of people who had not yet received the Holy Spirit.  We Apollos and those dozen men in Ephesus following the baptism of John or a saving belief in the name of Jesus?  What happened when they finally believed in Jesus (Acts 19:5-6)?
  • When does someone receive the Holy Spirit according to the Bible? (1 Cor 12:13 & Eph 1:13-14)
  • Is it possible to be a Christian and not have the Holy Spirit already? (Romans 8:9)
  • Without confirmation are we less entitled to call God our Father?
  • Without confirmation are we less united to Christ? What does Romans 8:38–39 say?
  • Without confirmation do Christians have the Holy Spirit? Do they have less gifts of the Holy Spirit?
  • Are Christians incomplete without Catholic Confirmation?
  • Why would children or adults in danger of death be rushed into Confirmation?
  • What does it mean to be “perfected by the Holy Spirit with the gift of Christ’s fullness”?
  • Where does the Bible describe God’s grace as needing to be “perfected”?


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