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WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT?

Really, what is it all about?  In the beginning God created everything and it was perfect.  It was paradise.  But we messed up.  We messed up bad.  We were tricked by a lie and all was lost.  But God loved us too much to allow this.  He made a way for everything to be fixed.  Jesus came to Earth to die and pay for our sins, a debt we could never pay.  In John 3:16, the Bible says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

What must we do to make things all right?  Come to Jesus.  He knows everything.  He has all power.  He loves us perfectly.  He would never do us wrong.  He gave his all for us.  He gave his life for us.  He died for us.  Trust him.  Trust him completely.  He can be trusted 100%.  Call upon his name.  “Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”  Give ourselves to Jesus.  Be baptised into him.  Follow him.  He would never lead us in the wrong direction.  He knows where to go.  He knows what to do.  He will guide us and protect us.  Believe in Jesus, trust in Jesus and give ourselves to Jesus.  Jesus is taking care of everything.  Jesus is taking care of ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING.  No matter what anyone says.  No matter what anyone does.  No matter what.  Follow Jesus and we can’t go wrong.

COME ON BROTHERS, LET’S GET TOGETHER

The world seems to be quickly moving further and further away from God.  In these difficult times, God’s church needs to stand together but tragically the church is terribly divided.  It is reported that there are now some 38,000 different Protestant groups.  One of the main Protestant beliefs is that no man is infallible (exempt from error).  So we cannot be sure that human opinion is true.  Yet each of these 38,000 groups believes it knows the truth.  There must be something wrong here.  Did God give 38,000 different truths?  How can these fallible men claim to know the truth?  Any truth?  By their own admission, all they have is fallible human opinion.  Without an infallible authority, all Christian belief boils down to fallible human opinion.

But Protestants say we have the Bible and the Bible is inspired (God breathed) and inerrant (without error).  But men chose which books to place in the Bible.  How could fallible men know which books to include in the Bible?  Without an infallible authority to recognize which books are God breathed and therefore inspired, the choice of books to include in the Bible is only fallible human opinion.  Only a church which Jesus personally built and guides with absolute certainty, can know which books to include in the Bible.  There is only one such church, the One True Church, the Roman Catholic Church.  Come on brothers let’s get together, come back home and be fully united to the Mother Church, God’s Church, the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

SOLA SCRIPTURA, AN IMPOSSIBLE ILLUSION

It has been said that there are no absolutes.  But that is an absolute, so it contradicts and invalidates itself.  It is an impossible illusion.  There is a similar problem with the foundational Protestant belief, Sola Scriptura or the Bible Alone.  It too, is an impossible illusion.  Sola Scriptura might sound good but when it is examined, it proves to be untrue because it contradicts itself.  It saws off the branch on which it sits.  Logic forces one to reject Sola Scriptura.  To Protestants this may sound shocking, so please let me explain.

Protestant Christians rightly believe that man did not invent Christianity, it was revealed by God.  They rightly believe the Bible is God’s Holy Word which is inspired (God breathed) and inerrant (without error).  Protestants rightly believe that men are imperfect and fallible (make mistakes).  But they conclude that only the Bible contains the truth God has revealed to man, so it must be the basis for all Christian belief.  They say, “If the Bible is the source of God’s truth, where else can we go to learn God’s truth?”  This belief is called Sola Scriptura or the Bible Alone.  It sounds logical.  So, what’s wrong with it?

Much Protestant belief agrees with Catholic teaching because when Protestants separated from the Catholic Church, they kept much of the truth.  But Protestants rejected the teaching that the Catholic Church was infallible in matters of faith and morals.  That Christ would not allow His Holy Church to teach error in these two critical areas.

PROTESTANTISM CANNOT REALLY EXIST

Protestantism cannot really exist.  It denies its own foundation.  It has no sure revelation.  No Bible, no doctrine.  Everything we know about Christianity comes from the infallible Catholic Church, but Protestants deny infallibility, so they deny the basis on which everything the Church teaches can be known.

How can there be different churches?  The church is Christ’s body.  How many bodies does Christ have?

BUT ISN’T THE CATHOLIC CHURCH FILLED OF ERRORS

Well, if the Catholic Church is full of errors, how could anyone know?  Again, it is just fallible human opinion making that judgement.   There is no way fallible humans can know the mind of God.  The only way is for God to reveal this to us.  But isn’t that what the Bible does?  Can’t we know God’s truth by reading the Bible, His Holy Word?  But how do we know it is God’s Holy Word?  Who says so?  How do they know?  It is just their fallible human opinion.  There are lots of other books which could have been included in the Bible.  Some people say other books should be in the Bible.  Who decided which books got in the Bible?  How did they know what the right books were?  The only way is if God told them and gave them the supernatural ability to recognize which books are truly ‘God breathed.’

Some people have lists of criteria they say can be used to determine if a book is breathed out by God.  Who could make up such a list?  How could they know what should be on the list?  Who are they to say so?  If, as Luther said, each man is his own Pope, everyone can have their own Bible and their own doctrines and their own Christianity and many do.  No, only those God has chosen, authorized and infallibly guided can know which books are God breathed.  And only those God has chosen, authorized and infallibly guided can know the correct doctrine.  So the doctrinal teaching of the Catholic Church is not filled with errors, it is perfect, it is infallible.  If it is not perfect and infallible, we cannot know anything about God and we would have no Bible.

AMERICA TURNED UPSIDE DOWN

America has turned upside down.  What was bad is good.  What was wrong is right.  American TV has gone from ‘Leave it to Beaver’ and ‘Father Knows Best’ to well, I’d rather not say.  Not long ago, unmarried couples living together was considered wrong and was uncommon.  Now it is accepted and commonplace.  Not long ago, abortion was considered wrong and was illegal.  Now, it is legal and accepted, even the procedure known as partial-birth abortion, where a baby is brutally killed, as it is being delivered.  Not long ago, homosexual behavior was considered wrong and there were laws against it.  Now, homosexual behavior is accepted, legal and has ‘come out of the closet’ and even ‘gay marriage’ is legal in some states.  America has largely accepted all this and says, “Don’t be old-fashioned.”  “It’s a free country.”  “To each his own.”  “Let people do their own thing.”  “You do what you want and let others do what they want.”  “If you don’t like it, ignore it.”  “They don’t bother anybody.”  “They aren’t hurting anyone.”  “What’s the harm?”  “It’s their right.”  “Don’t discriminate.”

Well, there is great harm in calling bad things good.  Bad things hurt people.  That’s why they’re called bad.  And when bad things are called good, good things will be called bad.  Good and evil cannot co-exist.  They will always try to destroy one another.  When the law decides bad is to be called good, it becomes wrong to call it bad.  It will become wrong to warn people to avoid destructive behavior and more and more people will be hurt.  If a Christian preacher says it is wrong for unmarried people to live together, it is called hate speech.  If a Christian landlord does not want to rent an apartment to an unmarried couple it is called discrimination.  If a Christian photographer does not want to photograph a gay wedding, it is called discrimination.  If the Church teaches that those who support abortion are not permitted to receive the sacraments, it is called discrimination.  If a Catholic adoption agency does not offer adoption to homosexual couples, it is called discrimination and some Catholic adoption agencies have been forced to close, rather than violate church teaching.

The government is now trying to force the Church to provide health insurance with birth control and abortion coverage.  How long before the government will try to force the Church to do other things which violate Church teaching?  Christianity is beginning to be outlawed.  This is clearly unconstitutional but it is happening.  Who would have thought this could happen in America?  The idea that it is good to legalize bad things isn’t working out to well for American Christians.

CATHOLIC POLITICIANS AND ABORTION

The Catholic Church has made it plain that abortion is tragically wrong because it takes an innocent human life.  The Church teaches it is unacceptable for a Catholic politician to support abortion.  Yet there are some Catholic politicians who are ‘pro-choice’ and support ‘abortion rights.’  How can this be?  The reasoning goes something like this, “I am a faithful Catholic and accept the Church’s teaching that human life begins at conception.  In my personal life, I would not be party to abortion.  But I am a public official and in this capacity, I cannot force my personal religious beliefs on other people.”  Is this reasoning legitimate?

Isn’t the duty of public officials to make public policy decisions which protect the lives and rights of the American people?  On what do they base their public policy decisions, if not their beliefs?  They believe abortion is the taking of an innocent human life.  Americans are guaranteed the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  So, what is a more basic right than the right to life?  Don’t public officials have the duty to protect our lives?  Abortion sounds like murder.  Don’t public official have the duty to protect us from murder?   Shouldn’t all murder be illegal?  It sounds like the politician is saying, “I believe abortion is murder but I won’t do anything about it because not everyone shares this belief.”  Does he take the same position on other crimes because criminals don’t share his belief?  Engaging in this type of thinking allows the unthinkable.

THE HOMOSEXUAL PROBLEM

The Catholic Church teaches homosexual behavior is improper.  Some say this is hate speech.  To deny people their sexual freedom is a denial of human rights.  To deny gay marriage is discrimination.  What can be wrong with two people sharing love?  Isn’t that what Jesus said?  To love God with our whole hearts and to love others as ourselves?  Some Protestant denominations accept homosexual behavior as a legitimate alternative lifestyle.  Some allow practicing homosexuals to be clergymen and church leaders.  There is even one denomination which is specifically for practicing homosexuals.  So, how can the Catholic Church condemn homosexual behavior?  How can the Church condemn ‘LOVE?’

The Church says homosexual behavior is improper because God teaches in the Bible it is wrong and because God teaches through Church doctrine it is wrong.  It is not genuine love.  It is unnatural and very injurious.  If it was genuine love, if it was natural and if it did not hurt people, God would not say “No” but He does.  The Church teaches the temptation is not sin but it is wrong to give in to the temptation to engage in homosexual behavior.

This may sound harsh but it is not meant to be.  A loving father must not allow his children to do things which will hurt them.  If his child runs into the street, he must disciple the child to stop this behavior, so it will not be injured.  It is not because he ‘hates’ his child, just the opposite.  He disciples his child because he loves his child.  And the child must trust the father to do the right thing because the father loves it so much and because the father is much wiser than his little child.  God’s Church wants what is good for God’s children.  Therefore, it must say “No” when God’s child does what is wrong.  And we must trust God absolutely because we know that He loves us and would never lead us the wrong way.

THE PROBLEM OF ORIGINS

What is meant by origins?  Simply, where did everything come from.  Did God create everything or did natural processes (evolution) produce everything.

As Christians we believe God created everything but there is debate about how.  Did he create everything in six literal days as the Bible says or did he take millions of years, working through natural processes as (theistic) evolution says?  In his encyclical Humani Generis, Pope Pius XII said Christians could investigate evolution, although it was not proven science.  But he warned not to compromise church teaching because of evolution.  Christians should know the truth and since all truth comes from God it is compatible.  If we investigate the teachings of evolution we should see if they are compatible with the teachings of Christianity.  What does it teach?  Is it true?  Does it conflict with Christian teaching?

If evolution is true, we should believe it.  If God is truly the author of the Bible, it will be compatible with genuine science.  All truth comes from God and will not contradict itself.  So, we need to know if evolution has been proven.    So, we need to know if evolution is true.  Is it a proven fact?  The British zoologist, Dr. L. Harrison Matthews is quoted as saying, “…biology is thus in the peculiar position of being a science founded on an unproven theory…”

FORGIVE US OUR TRESPASSES AS WE FORGIVE THOSE WHO TRESPASS AGAINST US

This is a tough one but Jesus said it in the OUR FATHER.  I have been working on forgiving everyone, everything and when I think I sort of have it down, then something happens to show me that I still have a long way to go.  I don’t know how to deal with it, really but I am trying to truly forgive everyone everything.  One thing that seems to help is to realize that when people do something bad to me, they are striking out because they are hurting.  If they were totally together and living in joyful harmony with God and man, they would not be hurting others.  And to love them and realize that as Jesus and Stephen said when they were being killed, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”  So, people do not understand what they are doing when they strike out against another.  I have not said this well, so I will try to recapture what I have been thinking and get down the right words to express what was a lot better in my mind than on this page of cyber-paper.

THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE

This is another one in progress.  I will need to work it out later but it probably is true on many levels.  When you know any truth it sets you free from making yourself a lot of trouble by taking the wrong path.  But the main thing it is trying to say is the THE TRUTH, Jesus is the only one who can truly set us free and that trusting and loving him is the way we are set free.  If we know he is taking care of us we can be free from worry and fear, although it is not always easy to put this into practice.  But when we truly trust him to take care of everything, we can be free.  “Thou will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee.”  It is good to have a Bible quote because then we know it is true.  “Cast your cares on him because he cares for you.”

GOD MADE A BEAUTIFUL, INCREDIBLY INTRICATE CREATION BUT THE DEVIL IS WORKING HARD TO TEAR IT DOWN

We can see this throughout the world now.  Things have gotten so much worse in the last few decades.  It is like the Devil isn’t trying to be so subtle anymore.  Bad things we were ashamed of are now done right out in the open and called good.  Dirty things are done in front of everyone with pride.  No shame anymore.  Things are turning upside down.  It is really hard to believe and it is easy to slip into bad behavior, if you are not very careful and resist temptation, which can come from many different directions.  “The Devil, he has a slippery shoe and if you don’t watch out he’ll slip it on you.”  It is like a boxer, who covers up one area and then gets hit in an uncovered area.  Sometimes you just gotta hold on when you feel like you’re a goner.  Like when the witch was casting a spell on Puddleglum, in the Silver Chair, and he just hung on by his ‘fingernails’ until he stepped on the fire and the pain brought him back to his senses.  Because remember, “He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able but in every temptation will make a way of escape.”  So, we have to trust Jesus when it looks hopeless.  That is when faith really gets built.  When you are on the edge of the cliff and he saves you from going over.  I guess he tests our faith to make it grow.

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