Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Catholics Should Believe Their First Pope
The apostle Peter played a prominent role in the early church. Soon after he abandoned his career as a fisherman to follow Christ, he became a fisher of men. Several of his sermons were recorded in the Book of Acts, and his two epistles are included in the divinely inspired Scriptures. Since Catholics have been taught that Peter was their first pope, I have developed some questions to shed some light on his theology, ecclesiology, and soteriology. All of the answers come directly from his writings and sermons. It is my prayer that those of us who have been sanctified by the truth will share these glorious truths with our Catholic friends and loved ones.
Peter, were you the first pope and the supreme head of the first century church?
"As a fellow elder, I exhort the elders among you... to shepherd the flock of God." (1 Pet. 5:1-3)
Are you the rock upon which Jesus would build His church?
Jesus is "a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God, chosen and precious... The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense. They stumble because they disobey the word." (1 Pet. 2:4,7-8)
Were you infallible?
Paul opposed me to my face because I was not in step with the truth of the Gospel.(Gal. 2:11,14)
Should we confess our sins to priests?
Repent of your wickedness and pray to God that your sins may be forgiven. (Acts 8:22)
Should we pray to Mary and the saints?
Pray to God. (Acts 8:22)
Can anyone be saved apart from the Lord Jesus Christ?
"There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
What would you say to Pope Francis who teaches that atheists can follow their conscience into heaven?
"There will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction." "The ignorant and unstable twist Paul's letters to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures." (2 Peter 2:1; 3:16)
Can anyone be certain that they have inherited eternal life?
God has caused believers to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven and protected by the power of God through faith. (1 Pet. 1:3-5)
Is it possible for God's grace or indulgences to be purchased for the remission of sins?
God ransoms us "not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ." (1 Pet. 1:18-19)
Can a person be born again through water baptism?
The only way to be regenerated is to be "born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God." (1 Pet. 1:23)
Should Jesus Christ be made a sin offering during the sacrifice of the Mass?
Christ suffered "once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit" (1 Pet. 3:18).
Is the Catholic priesthood necessary to mediate between God and man?
Every believer, who is called out of darkness into Christ's marvelous light, is made a priest for the purpose of offering spiritual sacrifices to God and proclaiming His perfections (1 Pet. 2:9).
Should Jesus continue to be pictured as a dead man hanging on a cross or as a baby in Mary's arms?
The resurrected Christ has "gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him." (1 Pet. 3:21-22)
What should we do in these days of great deception?
Take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Pet 3:17-18)
There is a profound contrast between the divinely inspired teachings of Peter and the fallible, ungodly opinions of Pope Francis. The enormous disparity between the instruction of these two men Catholics call "pope" shows how far the Roman Catholic Church has departed from the faith of the apostles. May God give us all a greater compassion for the many victims of religious deception.
Mike Gendron, Proclaiming the Gospel e-mail news, July 2015