Don't spread untruths on Catholicism

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The Rev. Paul Cook has, in less than two weeks, attacked Catholicism on two separate occasions. The first attack was in his guest column of July 23 ("Only way to heaven is spelled out in Bible"), and the second in his letter of July 30 ("The truth, whole truth, and nothing but"). The Rev. Cook either is purposely trying to spread falsehoods about the Catholic Church, or he is not as educated as he may think.

The Rev. Cook quotes Scripture, telling us to be aware of false prophets. He then warns us about false religions. The Baptist faith came into being during the 17th century, at a time when the Catholic Church was already on its 236th pope. I would ask the Rev. Cook to produce any written proof of official church teaching that states faith in the pope or the Virgin Mary are the way to life everlasting.

He also misspeaks on the subject of faith and works. I refer him to James 2:14-26, and Matthew 25:31-46. Christian works are an important part of faith, as shown in Scripture. He states that as a Christian he does not have the option to "pick and choose" which parts of the Bible he will believe.

On baptism, John 3:5 states "no one can enter the kingdom of GOD without being born of water and spirit." Titus 3:5 says "we are saved by the bath of rebirth." Both refer to baptism and are only two of several instances in Scripture that refer to the importance of baptism in relation to salvation. Both disagree with the Rev. Cook's position.

Lastly the Rev. Cook quotes Matthew, warning us about false prophets telling us lies and trying to deceive us. That is the only statement in his writings that we both agree on.

Mel La Pan

Augusta

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john
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john 08/04/10 - 10:53 am
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The scandals were horrible,

The scandals were horrible, but lets not pretend its only Catholics that do that stuff. I know of a few protestant ministers that have been caught at the rest stops not resting if you know what I mean and not being so nice to kids.

Im paraphrasing, but baptism washes away orignial sin from the infant. The child will have an opportunity later in life to make an informed decision to confirm themselves in the Catholic church.

Back to the scandals, and Im not taking up for the wrongdoers both the commiters and the cover upers. If you belive in good and evil. if you were evil, who would you want to convert? who would you want to have publicly stumble? If you can take down a few religious, wouldnt that just be a coup? At the end of the day, responsibility has to be taken, but im just sayin....

Desmond23
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Desmond23 08/04/10 - 11:42 am
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There are references to

There are references to infant baptism: in the Book of Acts, "entire households" were baptized...certainly this includes the infants. As for sprinkling with water, many of the early Christian communities were founded in the desert, without pools of water to submerse. Many baptisms are done in hospital rooms...is the sick and dying person supposed to detach all their hoses and life support to be immersed?

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 08/04/10 - 11:47 am
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It's really hard to believe

It's really hard to believe there is an argument going on about infant baptism and faith vs. works. It is ridiculous to rehash all this in an AC forum after it has been more than adequately covered for at least 1500 years and by far more brilliant people than we are.

Today, it is incumbent upon members of the Body of Christ, regardless of the particular differences in our dogma, to focus on what we hold in common rather than what separates us. I can't imagine that such an act of love would be displeasing to the One who loves us all.

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 08/04/10 - 11:48 am
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I really wish people like

I really wish people like Paul Cook got that.

TrukinRanger
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TrukinRanger 08/04/10 - 11:58 am
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yawn... gobblity gook...blah
Unpublished

yawn... gobblity gook...blah blah blah

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 08/04/10 - 12:33 pm
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If you find this discussion

If you find this discussion boring, Truk, feel free to go do something else. Nobody's desperate for you to hang around.

GAterp
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GAterp 08/04/10 - 12:59 pm
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Is that Nathan Bedford or

Is that Nathan Bedford or just a look alike?

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 08/04/10 - 01:21 pm
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Desmond, It's hard to say if

Desmond, It's hard to say if "households" constituted infants or not. I think we can say it included adult family members and slaves, but there is doubt whether this included babies. The best thing you can say about that is that "maybe" you can "assume" that babies were "baptized". Certainly can't prove it.

Interesting, though, the word "baptize" is a transliteration from the original Greek, and always meant to "plunge, dip, or immerse". I don't believe it ever meant to "sprinkle". So, if babies were ever baptized in the NT (and there's no clear evidence that they were), it would have been immersion, because that's what "baptism" literally means.

One last thing.... John the Baptist lived out in the desert and the wilderness, and sure found enough water to immerse people. So, I don't think that argument "holds water".

Fiat_Lux
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Fiat_Lux 08/04/10 - 01:15 pm
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Not even close, Terp. He's a

Not even close, Terp. He's a local boy who doesn't look at all like Forrest, except for the style of beard.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 08/04/10 - 01:13 pm
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I agree with Dominion that

I agree with Dominion that there is far too much confusion out there concerning Christian issues, like baptism. It's a terrible shame, but results when people decide to change things and do it there own way.

If you look at the history of baptism -- especially reading quotes from the early church leaders of the 1st and 2nd centuries -- they confirmed that baptism was the point at which sins were forgiven. Even Martin Luther, the original Protestant, believed and taught that as well.

It wasn't until the ideas of Huldreich Zwingli (no, I'm not making that name up) that the role of baptism was diminished. Zwingli, a Swiss (I believe) theologian decided that the apostles and church tradition had been wrong about the role of baptism, even though its importance for salvation had been recognized and taught for hundreds of years. Zwingli taught that baptism was nothing more than a sign or symbol. Unfortunately, John Calvin picked up on the same idea, and today many Protestant denominations follow their theological ideas.

It's an interesting history. Bottom line is that the Bible and the early church taught baptism was essential for salvation. It was not until about 1600 years later that the idea was altered by a couple of theologians who thought they new better.

southernguy08
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southernguy08 08/04/10 - 02:54 pm
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Reverend Cook spreading
Unpublished

Reverend Cook spreading untruths? No...say it ain't so!

baronvonreich
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baronvonreich 08/04/10 - 03:48 pm
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.....

.....

baronvonreich
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baronvonreich 08/04/10 - 03:48 pm
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If the Bible and Jesus is the

If the Bible and Jesus is the "TRUTH" as some say, then why o why are there so many arguments over this simple "TRUTH?"

I think the objective realists out there know why.....

FallingLeaves
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FallingLeaves 08/04/10 - 03:58 pm
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If I ever find a religion

If I ever find a religion free from sinners (and that includes the wrongful acts listed above), then and only then would I re-consider remaining Catholic.

southernguy08
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southernguy08 08/04/10 - 06:52 pm
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"Judge not that ye be not
Unpublished

"Judge not that ye be not judged." Matthew, Chapt. 7 That too is in the bible, Reverend Cook. Let's not forget, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." I'll let you guess who said that first. It wasn't those preachers on Sunday morning TV.

mable8
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mable8 08/04/10 - 07:22 pm
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The reverend cook is

The reverend cook is uneducated...if he would study the history of religions he would find that all churches do stem from the Catholic Church. Whenever there were disagreements within the church, splinter groups formed their own church; they splintered....and now we have what we do today. And another thing, the Bible isn't the way to heaven; what man harbors in his heart and soul is what matters. Man can publicly profess his beliefs all he wants, but if what he believes is not within his soul, that Bible is of no use.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 08/04/10 - 08:57 pm
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dominionfs, you are free to

dominionfs, you are free to disagree but according to scripture:

James 1:22 "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says."

I do not see where this makes your point about saved by works and not by faith. I will agree that faith and works go hand in hand in order to grow your relationship with Christ, but your salvation is not dependant on your works. We are saved by God's grace and works is not involved.

James 2:17 & 18 "In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. 18) But someone will say, "You have faith; I have deeds." Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do."

True faith involves a commitment of your whole self and what James is trying to point out is that if we only have faith and never do anything with it then it will eventually wither away. It is like the parable that Jesus told about the seed falling on the different types of soil. You can be a mediocre Christian and don't do anything with the talents and gifts God gives you or you can be a Christian who has a close relationship with Christ. If the latter is true, then you will want to do things that pleases Christ

Matthew 7:24 "Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock."

This verse speaks about obeying and following God's will, putting your trust in the one who controls it all. Your faith will be solid if it's built upon the Word of God. I do not see in any of these verses where we are saved by our works. If that were the case then we would have a tendency to boast about what will do for Christ and we have nothing to boast about except boast in the Lord.

Works or deeds will naturally follow your faith if you put your trust in the Lord. You faith will eventually fade away if no works follow

dominionfs
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dominionfs 08/04/10 - 09:10 pm
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ICL :- It is just that I

ICL :- It is just that I don't see it as an 'Either/Or' proposition. I think both are neccesary. Of course faith is vital, but faith must be followed by selfless action. Your reply, IMO correctly states that the deeds will follow with the right mind-set (faith). I did not get that impression from the initial post which is the one I replied to. Apologies if I took it out of context and misquoted you.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 08/04/10 - 09:46 pm
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I see we agree that both are

I see we agree that both are necessary in order to have a relationship with Christ and I apologize...maybe my wording wasn't the best. What good is faith if you don't put it into action.

RAINBOW
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RAINBOW 08/04/10 - 11:44 pm
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I agree with how can we know

I agree with how can we know because she is stating what the Bible teaches,every account of someone being preached to,were baptized.
Remember they jailor in the book of Acts? he was baptized at midnight,because the Apostles knew how important baptism was,they didnt wait.Also baptism is not a work as some claim,it is commiting to Gods' will.

Republicant
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Republicant 08/05/10 - 12:12 am
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Son- " Why are you getting so

Son- " Why are you getting so upset Dad? You don't even believe in God."
Dad- "That doesn't mean I'm going to stop being a good Catholic."
The Brothers McMullen

InChristLove
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InChristLove 08/05/10 - 06:37 am
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Baptism is an important part

Baptism is an important part of our conversion but it's not what saves us. We are saved by the Grace of God when we:

"If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe with
your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."
Romans 10:9

Baptism is what follows as an act of washing are old self and sinful nature away and being renewed with the new life in Christ. No where in the Bible does it mention that Jesus baptized anyone, only the disciples baptized. Could this be for a reason, maybe Christ wanted to teach us that it's all about Him and not about all the rituals and traditions we get hung up on. It's about accepting Him and only Him. Baptism is important but you can be baptized and still be lost as a ball in tall grass.

hellome
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hellome 08/05/10 - 07:24 am
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This is an article called One

This is an article called One True Religion - One true Church!
I think all of you should read this:
http://thetrumpet.com/index.php?q=7002.5505.0.0

hellome
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hellome 08/05/10 - 07:28 am
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Ohh look another article,

Ohh look another article, this one is titles "The plain truth about saving faith".

http://thetrumpet.com/index.php?q=4694.5700.0.0

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 08/05/10 - 10:16 am
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ICL, I think you really can

ICL, I think you really can build a strong case directly from scripture that it is indeed the act of baptism that washes away sin. Look at Acts 2:38, where baptism has 2 effects: 1) forgiveness, 2) indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Read the conversion of Saul (Acts 9 and Acts 22), where it is stated very directly that it was Saul's baptism that washed away his sin, not just faith or repentance.

I've noticed that there is no verse in the Bible that says ALL you have to do is believe and nothing else. In fact, James is very clear that belief alone will not save. There has to be action on those beliefs. Not that baptism is a work that we do -- it's not, because it is something that God does for us. Yet, God still requires it. So, yes, if you truly believe, you'll be baptized and be saved. The Romans 10:9 verse you quote does not rule out baptism at all.

I think a BIG mistake people make is to build their entire theology of baptism around verses that don't even mention it. That's not logical, is it? You first examine all the NT verses that speak directly about baptism, and then see how this fits into the whole picture. Romans 10:9 says nothing about baptism directly, so why use this verse to determine your concept of baptism?

Did you notice that "faith" is not specifically mentioned as a requirement for salvation in Acts 2:38? Does that mean faith is not important? We are told that whoever confesses Christ will be saved -- but guess what: neither faith nor baptism are mentioned in that verse, but we don't negate the importance of faith now, do we? So, we can't negate the importance of baptism just because it is not mentioned in a specific verse. Point is, making definite conclusion based on the absence of evidence is not the best way to find truth. You first seek where baptism is mentioned directly, and start there.

Also, what is never mentioned in the Bible is "The Sinner's Prayer" or "Accepting Jesus into your heart". Does this mean that those things are bad and need to be stopped? I mean, they are not mentioned in the Bible, and Jesus never told His disciples to teach folks the Sinner's Prayer, did He? What Jesus did instruct in the Great Commission is to BAPTIZE. Now, that's a powerful statement, isn't it? He did not tell them to "accept Christ into their heart". He told them to baptize. Again, you can't minimize what the NT says about baptism directly.

Jesus did not baptize. OK. Again, this really doesn't prove anything. Obviously, it was important because He instructed His apostles to baptize, and over 3000 were immersed on Pentecost. That's a lot of trouble to go through if baptism is not really essential, don't you think?

I'd suggest grabbing a concordance and looking up all the NT verses that deal with baptism directly -- this is what I've done. When you do this, here's some of the highlights you'll find:

Baptism:
1) effects forgiveness (Acts 2:38 and 9 and 22).
2) is how we "get into" Christ -- notice we are not prayed, asked, believed, confessed, or repented into Christ. Paul specifically tells us that we are BAPTIZED into Christ.
3) we are baptized into Christ's death -- again, not prayed or believed into it.
4) we are baptized to put on Christ. -- no other method is given.
5) BAPTISM saves us --1 Peter 3:21. Doesn't get much more direct than that, does it?
6) Both belief and baptism are required for salvation -- quote from Jesus in Mark 16

There's more also, but that's all I can remember off the top of my head. These scriptures are where we all need to start forming our concept of baptism's proper role.The assumption that Jesus may not have personally immersed anyone really is neither here nor there, is it?

I'm not saying that baptism is what saves, but I do believe the NT teaches very clearly that faith, repentance, and baptism are all necessary. None is more important than the other, but each must be done. In fact, they all fit together and complement each other perfectly. That's God's plan of salvation. Deviating from this plan is our choice, but is not without peril, I'm afraid.

Cia
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Cia 02/17/13 - 10:10 am
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baptism yep and yep yep

Catholics believe baptism is necessary for salvation.
VATICAN II declared this in #7 of it’s decree Ad Gentes:
“Therefore, all must be converted to Him, made known by the Church's preaching, and all must be incorporated into Him by baptism and into the Church which is His body. For Christ Himself "by stressing in express language the necessity of faith and baptism (cf. Mark 16:16; John 3:5), at the same time confirmed the necessity of the Church, into which men enter by baptism, as by a door. Therefore those men cannot be saved, who though aware that God, through Jesus Christ founded the Church as something necessary, still do not wish to enter into it, or to persevere in it." (Dogmatic constitution by Vatican II: Lumen Gentium 14) Therefore though God in ways known to Himself can lead those inculpably ignorant of the Gospel to find that faith without which it is impossible to please Him (Heb. 11:6), yet a necessity lies upon the Church (1 Cor. 9:16), and at the same time a sacred duty, to preach the Gospel. And hence missionary activity today as always retains its power and necessity.”

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