ROMAN CATHOLICISM: A DIFFERENT GOSPEL THAT CONDONES IDOLATRY
If there are Roman Catholics who take part in the Mass, who is to say that they are not Christians? What is so bad about taking the Catholic Mass? It surely does not mean these people follow another Gospel does it?
The Gospel saves us from idolatry and tells us to repent. Anybody in scripture that got saved turned from idolatry and in the case of the Corinthians seriously admonished if they continued to eat meat sacrificed to idols. The Roman Catholic Church teaches a doctrine called ‘transubstantiation’. This means that when the priest prays over the bread and wine in the Roman Catholic Mass the bread and wine, though still looking accidentally like bread and wine, actually change substance and become the very body and blood of Jesus. This is called the ‘real presence’. When Roman Catholics take communion, they believe that they are actually eating Jesus. The bread and wine are called the Eucharistic. Eucharist comes from the Greek word ‘Eucharisto’ which means ‘thanksgiving’ but the Roman Catholic is doing more that thanking God. They think they are worshipping Jesus whom they are eating. If the bread and wine turn into the literal body and blood of Jesus then there is no problem with the mass. But if the bread and wine do not change, then in treating the bread and wine as if those emblems are Jesus are they not guilty of idolatry? If the bread and wine do literally become the body and blood of the Lord then I am in serious peril for I have blasphemed the Lord. Idolatry is something we must all guard against but the difference with the mass is that it is institutionalized idolatry and the official dogma of the Catholic Church. Thus to embrace the Mass as part of ones salvation – it is also taught as a means of acquiring grace to lessen ones time in purgatory – would deny the Gospel of its call to repent from all idolatry. In some cases I believe there would be innocence in ignorance but not in the case of the top brass. Not in the case of Roman Catholic Archbishop, Monsignor Luis Alberto Rivas of Saint Joseph Basilica. I would be much softer in my tone concerning the average Roman Catholic but I do not lessen my view of the Vatican.
Of course it must be admitted that Catholics do not believe that they are worshipping a piece of bread for they do not believe the bread is bread. It is the very body of Christ. So from their perspective it is a sin not to worship the Eucharistic host because the bread is Jesus. The following Catholic forum and attached article by the catholic news agency spells this out. http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=438849 . Thus, if the Eucharist is not Jesus in a literal sense then Roman Catholics are guilty of idolatry. But if the bread is the very body of Christ then I am sinning for calling the Mass an act of idolatry and not believing in Jesus as He has manifested Himself. The people on the aforementioned website even claim themselves that The Mass is not idolatry simply because of the fact that the Eucharist is Christ.
In John 6:47 it says that unless we eat Jesus’ body and drink Jesus’ blood we have no life in ourselves. Jesus clearly says that the way to receive that life, which we receive by eating His body and drinking His blood in John 6:47 is by believing. It is not by eating communion or else how would the thief on the cross have been saved. It is true that we commune with Christ when we take communion, but not by the actual emblems. It is simply by belief and obedience in His commandment as happens when we believe and obey him in other matters. There is a greater significance however in that the bread and the cup are symbols. The cup itself symbolizes the New Covenant but I do not hear anyone saying that the cup has transformed into a covenant! In communion we relive the cross theatrically not actually, just as the Jews relived the exodus theatrically in the Passover. When Jews say that the matza is the bread of affliction, it did not turn into the actual bread they had in Egypt. Thus the Mass is idolatry in that the emblems do not turn into the very body and blood of Christ and thus they are worshipping bread and wine. If the Catholics are right then my soul is in eternal peril unless I recant and change my position.
Pope John Paul II spoke clearly of Eucharistic worship of Christ in the mass. Where do they meet Him? According to Catholic dogma the emblems are Christ. This is not far out heretical teachings from the lunatic fringe of Roman Catholicism but representative of the Catholic Church’s stance itself. There may be individuals in the Roman Catholic Church who do it in ignorance, but this is Roman Catholic dogma itself and not the lunatic fringe of the pre Vatican II crowd.
Some may say that Catholics merely worship Christ to whom the emblems of the bread and wine point. If only Catholics worshipped that to which the emblems pointed to! But this is not the doctrine of transubstantiation. The emblems do not merely point to the body and blood of Christ but they change substance to become the actual body and blood of Jesus. Even, if some do not hold to the traditional Catholic view, it is still the view of the church and the majority of the Catholic world holds to this. Again we reiterate that for the Catholic, they are not worshipping bread and wine, because for them it is not bread and wine. Those are just its accidents. Its essence or substance is Christ Himself. They meet Christ in the mass because they are literally eating Christ. Again if transubstantiation is true to regard them as merely symbolic would be to reject Christ as He has manifested Himself in our unbelief and thus we would be blaspheming against His very body and blood to speak against transubstantiation.
However it is argued that Catholics do not worship the Eucharist, which they also call the host. Dr Alan Schreck, associate professor of theology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio states that “Catholics speak of the “real presence” of Christ in the bread and wine. This presence of Jesus can only be accepted by faith…. (We) simply affirm that Jesus’ words are literally true.** This is why RCs have great reverence for the bread and wine, since they believe the Word of God to be present in them….. Catholics do not ‘worship the host’ but worship Jesus Christ whom they discern by faith to be present in the host.”
This may perhaps show some difference of understanding within the Catholic Church. I know that Dr Alan Schreck is engaged in apologetics for the Catholic Church in the hope of welcoming protestants and evangelicals back home to mother church. http://www.franciscan.edu/News/Cardinal_Rigali_Apologists_Equip_the_Faithful/ . Yet the late Pope John Paul II, the head spokesperson for the Catholic Church answered the false claim that Catholics do not worship the Eucharistic host from in excerpts from his three day address in Pheonix Park, Ireland 1979. ‘The Eucharist, in the Mass and outside of the Mass, is the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, and is therefore deserving of the worship that is given to the living God, and to him alone.’ www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/pea/pjpdevot.html
My friends, this is why I have put together the open letter and petition for David Sedaca and the Lausanne Consultation For Jewish Evangelism. More and more evangelicals are flirting with that false religion and it is time for God’s faithful to raise their voice in objection. “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols?” – 2 Cor 6:14-16 “But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads my bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.” – Rev 2:20.
I am not alone in my belief. The following people from the following ministries also have this concern heavily on their hearts:
Name: Ruth Nessim (CJF Ministries Missionary in Israel http://www.cjfm.org/)
3/9/2013 Name removed as person sees this petition as inconsistent.
Name: John Hayworth (Firstplumbline Church) 3/9/2013 Correction
Name: J. Jacob Prasch (Moriel Ministries’ International Director)
Name: Keith Parker (Prayer for Israel, UK)
Name: Geoffrey Toole (Moriel Ministries, Japan)
Name: Alan MacKenzie (Road to Recovery Christian Fellowship)
Name: Roger Winter-Smith (Pastor of Stroud Green Christian Assembly)
Name: Chris De Wet (Moriel Ministries, Bloemfontein, SA)
Name: Jackie Alnor (Host of Apostasy Alert on Rapture Ready Radio Network
Name: Pastor Marco Quintana (Pastor of the Community Church of Devore)
Name: Scott Brisk (Moriel Be Alert)
Name: Cecil Andrews (‘Take Heed’ Ministries) – P.S. Details of 3 public debates in Ireland on
‘The Eucharist’ in which Cecil Andrews shall be participating in May 2012 (DV) can be found on this link:
Please consider also signing the petition: www.ipetitions.com/petition/lcje
Shalom in Yeshua,
Salvador Ung Hayworth