Tagged: sacraments

Importance of the Sacraments

Protestants confess their sins. However, they don’t go to a priest to do it. We pray to God directly for forgiveness of our sins

So do Catholics. But we also go to the Sacrament of Confession in order that our souls be washed of our sins in this life. That is the benefit of the Sacrament.

Whether you’re Catholic or Protestant, confession is a must.
Very true. Because without repentance, there is no salvation.

Yes, I realize this. I didn’t mean to infer that you would not have gone to Christ in prayer to confess. I should have cleared that up, but thanks for doing so.
What you don’t realize is that they “think” they are confessing to God. But in fact, they are not. They are simply recounting to themselves their own guilt.

One does not need to confess in order for God to know that they are truly repentant. God is omniscient. The benefit of the Sacrament of Confession is in the CONFIRMATION by the Minister of God that God has heard the repentant sinner and washed away their sin.

2 Corinthians 5:20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

This is the doctrine of Baptisms. Every Sacrament is a Baptism.

Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
The Protestant who denies the benefit of the Sacrament of confession, has, by his unbelief, condemned himself.

But he that approaches the founts of grace, the Sacraments, including Confession, with sincere belief that God can do through that Sacrament what He promised, that man is saved.

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How do we receive God’s mercy?

Question:

How do you understand “not by works” in Eph 2:9 and what does it apply to?

The same way that I do in Titus 3:5.

Titus 3:5 says, “not by works of righteousness we have done“.

Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

So, Ephesians 2:9 says, in essence:

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, lest any man should boast.

In other words, God requires us to do works of righteousness. But that isn’t what saves us. What does?

Titus 3:5 says:

but according to his mercy he saved us,

What does that mean? Well, let’s go to the Old Testament:

Exodus 20:6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

In other words, in order to receive God’s mercy, we must love Him and keep His Commandments.

But the works don’t save us. They are a prerequisite to receive His mercy.

How then, do we receive His mercy?

by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

What’s that? That’s a description of Baptism. In other words, it is in the Sacraments, that those who have done the will of God, receive His mercy. In other words, His grace.

So, how does this relate to Ephesians 2? Let’s look at Ephesians 2:8

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith;

This is a very succinct and apt description of the Sacraments. It is in the Sacraments that God pours out His grace upon those who make a proclamation of faith.

and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

The Holy Ghost is God. Therefore, this gift is the way in which St. Paul describes the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Ghost in this letter. This also ties back to Acts 2:

38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

In summary, those who do good works, are saved by God.

Romans 4 and the Sacraments

I was pleasantly surprised that there was so much interest in the difference between how Catholics and Protestants understand Romans 10. That being the case, I’d like to highlight where Catholics and Protestants differ on the understanding of Romans 4. This chapter contains several quotes which Protestants also use to support faith alone. 
Read More…

Again, that would be the Catholic Church which gives us all the Seven Sacraments.

THE OLD ADAM June 7, 2013 at 10:45 pm “The Church is where the gospel is proclaimed in it’s purity
That would be the Catholic Church. That why Scripture says: Ephesians 3:10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,
and where the sacraments are administered in accordance with that gospel.”
Again, that would be the Catholic Church which gives us all the Seven Sacraments.
– Luther
I quote Scripture, you quote a rebellious priest.
Again. Being Christ centered and Word centered instead of (proper)organization, or human centered.
Those who listen to the Catholic Church listen to Chrtst who speaks through her.
Sincerely,
De Maria

The Sacraments are fountains of grace

  • ROBERT May 10, 2013 at 6:33 am
    De Maria,
    You are right that Romanism, at the end of the day teaches that the sacraments can’t guarantee one’s salvation. If I can approach the Eucharist thousands of time in my life and die in a state of mortal sin, then I lose.

    That is correct, Robert. The Sacraments are fountains of grace which help us to withstand temptation and achieve righteousness. But God does not give away salvation without suffering and trials:
    1 Peter 1:7
    That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

    Romans 8:17
    And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

    1 Peter 2:21
    For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

    Sincerely,

    De Maria

Is salvation caused by works?

As a Protestant I learned that good works are a result of salvation.  But does the Catholic Church teach that works cause salvation?

Neither.

Good works are a result of faith. 

The causes of salvation are explained in the Council of Trent (Session VI, chapter 7) and boil down to the Mercy of God.

I’ll quote the pertinent portion below:


The causes of this justification are:
the final cause is the glory of God and of Christ and life everlasting;

the efficient cause is the merciful God who washes and sanctifies[31] gratuitously, signing and anointing with the holy Spirit of promise, who is the pledge of our inheritance,[32]

the meritorious cause is His most beloved only begotten, our Lord Jesus Christ, who, when we were enemies,[33] for the exceeding charity wherewith he loved us,[34] merited for us justification by His most holy passion on the wood of the cross and made satisfaction for us to God the Father, 
the instrumental cause is the sacrament of baptism, which is the sacrament of faith,[35] without which no man was ever justified finally, (Note: Remember, Baptism is the work of God to which we submit. It is not our work.)

the single formal cause is the justice of God, not that by which He Himself is just, but that by which He makes us just, that, namely, with which we being endowed by Him, are renewed in the spirit of our mind,

http://www.ewtn.com/library/councils/trent6.htm


In other words, God is the cause of our salvation. No one and nothing else.

Who is right? St. James or St. Paul?

St. James actually teaches the imprecise lesson. We are saved by faith and works, “so to speak”. Because they are necessary prerequisites.

I think we all agree that “faith” is a necessary prerequisite, do we not?

Hebrews 11:6But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

And works are also a necessary prerequisite. St. John says:

John 15:2

Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away:….

Does that mean then, that we work our way to heaven? By no means.

Does it mean that we cleanse our own souls of sins? No way.

Here is what the Catholic Church officially says:

Trent 6

CHAPTER VIII

HOW THE GRATUITOUS JUSTIFICATION OF THE SINNER BY FAITH IS TO BE UNDERSTOOD

But when the Apostle says that man is justified by faith and freely,[44] these words are to be understood in that sense in which the uninterrupted unanimity of the Catholic Church has held and expressed them, namely, that we are therefore said to be justified by faith, because faith is the beginning of human salvation, the foundation and root of all justification, without which it is impossible to please God[45] and to come to the fellowship of His sons;

and we are therefore said to be justified gratuitously, because none of those things that precede justification, whether faith or works, merit the grace of justification.

For, if by grace, it is not now by works, otherwise, as the Apostle says, grace is no more grace.[46]

 Note the bold italics.
St. Paul teaches the same thing, but more precisely. He says:

Romans 2:13

For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

The only thing he needs to add to that to be absolutely precise are the words, “by God”. It would then read:

For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified by God.

Here’s the rest of the Catholic Teaching from Trent:

CHAPTER VII

IN WHAT THE JUSTIFICATION OF THE SINNER CONSISTS, AND WHAT ARE ITS CAUSES

This disposition or preparation is followed by justification itself, which is not only a remission of sins but also the sanctification and renewal of the inward man through the voluntary reception of the grace and gifts whereby an unjust man becomes just and from being an enemy becomes a friend, that he may be an heir according to hope of life everlasting.[30]

The causes of this justification are:

the final cause is the glory of God and of Christ and life everlasting; the efficient cause is the merciful God who washes and sanctifies[31] gratuitously, signing and anointing with the holy Spirit of promise, who is the pledge of our inheritance,[32] the meritorious cause is His most beloved only begotten, our Lord Jesus Christ, who, when we were enemies,[33] for the exceeding charity wherewith he loved us,[34] merited for us justification by His most holy passion on the wood of the cross and made satisfaction for us to God the Father, the instrumental cause is the sacrament of baptism, which is the sacrament of faith,[35] without which no man was ever justified finally, the single formal cause is the justice of God, not that by which He Himself is just, but that by which He makes us just, that, namely, with which we being endowed by Him, are renewed in the spirit of our mind,[36] and not only are we reputed but we are truly called and are just, receiving justice within us, each one according to his own measure, which the Holy Ghost distributes to everyone as He wills,[37] and according to each one’s disposition and cooperation.

Again, please note the bold italics.

What the Church teaches is that it is God who justifies….those who have faith in Him and obey His will. In other words, those who permit Him to work through them to achieve His purpose.
Again I hope that I have not overcomplicated the matter for you. Your understanding is already correct.