Author: Lisa Graas
•10/04/2002 08:49:00 PM
Attn: Protestants (Zionist or otherwise)!
I was told that I would get hate mail. No hate mail so far, but I have gotten a couple of emails from a Zionist/Lutheran/Nestorian/Conservative-and/or-Liberal Sola Scriptura adherent. I'm not really sure what his religion is, precisely. He has come at me from all sides, as people usually do when they don't know very much about Catholicism. I've decided to post my response to him here just in case there are any others of his ilk lurking.



Re: Infant baptism --
Jesus was circumcised as an infant. Do you require circumcision? If no, why not? Baptism replaced circumcision. We know that baptism replaced circumcision because Paul plainly states it. We do not seek to "fish the Bible" for alternative explanations when we disagree with others. We choose to do what the Bible says, in keeping with what the early Church believed. In this, we hold fast to the traditions that have been handed on to us, whether by letter or by word (orally).



It is Biblical to remain united to the truths that have always been known but which were not recorded in the Bible like a list of recipe ingredients. God's Word is living and active. It is not something that was ever meant to be listed in written form ONLY as a set of rules with the exception of the Ten Commandments. But I digress. All those who crossed the Red Sea with Moses were baptized into Christ, including the children. They were "dib dabbed" as you say by the mist in the cloud, all at once. I have chosen to become as close as possible to Jesus Christ. What I mean by this is that I choose to be on a journey in my life in which I am learning day by day to abandon myself to His will. It is an amazing journey to be on. I have read great things here and there which were written by Protestants, but true wisdom I have found only in the Bible and in the lives of the Saints.



Re: Intelligence --
I am amazed by how often I am given the verse which you gave me in regard to fools and the wise. This verse refers to the wisdom of the world. You seem to be telling me that wisdom of the Bible is evil. Be careful. Bible scholars may obtain salvation as well as anyone else can. Neither does God require Bible scholarship for salvation. God has provided an authoritative
Church to preach the truth so that even the illiterate may come to know the life of Christ and, in this, come at last into His rest.



Re: Mary as the Mother of God --
I'm sorry that you don't understand about Mary. I'm sorry that you don't realize how your thinking really lessens a person's view of Jesus. Mary is the new Ark of the Covenant because she carried God's Word within her. The Ten Commandments, the Rod of Aaron and the manna which were inside the Ark of the Covenant of the Old Testament are in no way more holy than Jesus is. It was prophesied that in the piercing of Mary's soul, the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. From the time that I was a little girl of about ten years old, growing up in a Baptist household, LONG before I became Catholic, I understood that Mary is the woman in Revelation 12:1. It wasn't until after I accepted Christ (in The Church which you know as "Catholic") that I
learned that this is also the understanding of the Church.



Mary is the "new Eve". Eve said 'no' to God. Mary said 'yes' to God. All that she is, she is because God has made her that way. God protected her from the stain of original sin. We know this because of what we know about God's holiness. It is what we believe about God's holiness that requires us to believe what we do about Mary. I can assure you that you do not know the holiness of God if you cannot accept that Mary was protected from the stain of original sin. We honor Mary as our mother because she is the mother of Christ. Just as Eve is the mother of humanity, Mary is the mother of all those who live in Christ. You are afraid of something, it seems. It seems you are afraid that by calling Mary the Mother of God, we are going to say that she is greater than God. The Church has never said this and never will.



You said:
A human woman Cannot truly be the mother of the Eternal God
The mother of the man Jesus,Yes
The mother of God the Father / the Creator without beginning or end,...




The Church does not teach that Mary is the mother of the Father. The Church teaches that she is the Mother of Christ and that Christ is God. Do you not believe in the Trinity? What you describe has a name. It is called Nestorianism. It was condemned as a heresy by the Church centuries ago. I'm surprised that you accept such a thing -- that Christ is not divine, or that He was actually two persons. It is not true.



Re: "call no man father" --
You agree, I suppose, that it is okay to call a man "doctor" as long as we are of the understanding that Jesus is the true physician in heaven. It is the same with calling priests 'father'.


1Th 2:11 As you know in what manner, entreating and comforting you (as a father doth his children),

Jam 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, offering up Isaac his son upon the altar?




Re: Matrimony --
I'm really not sure where you get the idea that the Catholic Church forbids people to marry. Well, that's simply not true. I am a Catholic, as you know, and I am also married. I was married in the Catholic Church. Matrimony is a sacrament in the Church (the sacraments are vast rivers of grace flowing from the Cross of Christ) and is known by the Church to be a holy institution through which many people are redeemed. Matrimony is much much much more elevated in Catholic theology than in ANY Protestant church today. Protestant churches have almost no theology about matrimony whereas our understanding of Matrimony is a central aspect in the life of the Church. It boggles the mind that you would even suggest that marriage is forbidden in the Catholic Church. It is Protestants who miss the mark in the area of marriage with their acceptance of abortion and contraception. Contraception is gravely evil and it is a travesty that every Protestant denomination has accepted contraception. Why? It seems to be because they don't FULLY understand the difference between lust and love.



Catholics are not vegetarians like the Gnostics whom Paul was referring to in his First Letter to Timothy. Paul was speaking about Gnostics who did not allow marriage for anyone and did not allow animals to be killed (ergo abstaining from all meat at all times). They believe that the soul is trapped in the body and that this was a bad thing. They often committed suicide by starvation in order to "release" the soul from the "prison" which they viewed the body to be.



Re: fish on Fridays --
I can't recall Jesus eating any other kind of meat, and if I'm not mistaken, fish is meat, and also, Jesus fasted. Fasting is not evil. Jesus fasted.



Celibacy of priests is not a doctrine. It is a discipline. Our priests are, at this time in the Church, required to follow the example of Paul. The Church may certainly change this at some later date, but as a body we are seeking perfection in all things, hence the discipline of Paul is, at this time, a requirement. Even so, in the early Church, those who were ordained and were married were required to live apart from their spouses to fully dedicate themselves to ministry and fullness of life in the Lord. Marriage is not about fulfilling lustful pleasures. Lust is always a grave evil, even in marriage. I assure you that it is possible for a man and a woman to have a fulfilling sex life without one ever lusting for the other. In fact, it is not God's will for lust to enter into the marital act at all. If you do not understand this, then you do not understand Holy Matrimony.



Re: Christ's body and divisions in the Church --
You are correct that Christ's body was not meant to be divided. Catholics understand that the Father did not deny His Son's prayer for unity. We recognize that there is unity in the Catholic Church (although there are also wolves claiming to be Catholic who do not adhere to Catholic doctrine). We recognize, as the Church teaches, that all who are properly baptized are members of His Body. When a Protestant converts to Catholicism, he is not re-baptized. There is no need because the Church recognizes the validity of baptisms as long as they were done properly, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Christ's body is not divided. There are, however, many people who have chosen to separate themselves from it because they choose to lean on their own understandings rather than the will of God which has been passed to us without error for 2,000 years.


2Th 3:6 And we charge you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother walking disorderly and not according to the tradition which they have received of us.




Re: the priest only drinking from the cup
, I do not know what you are talking about. I always partake of the Cup myself. Most people do. It's a personal choice.



Re: Peter as the first Pope --
I agree that Jesus is the Cornerstone, the topstone and all throughout. If it were not so, there could be no Papacy, no Church, no Church members. The universe itself was created through Him. I share in the universe because of Christ. I share in His priesthood as I offer my body as a living sacrifice. So, too, the priests share in His ministry as teachers and as images of the bridegroom at the wedding feast of the Lamb. Christians share in many things that belong to Christ alone because we are partakers of His divine nature. By giving Peter authority, Christ was not taking any authority away from Himself.



RE: the word "Catholic".
Catholic means "universal". Universality (Catholicity) is one of the four marks of the Church. The four marks of the Church are that the Church is One, Holy, Catholic (Universal), and Apostolic. The world does not like referring to us as the One Church, the Holy Church, or the Apostolic Church. We are the One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic Church which truly has no name. Catholic is a word that people have grown accustomed to. One truth, one kingdom, one bread, one body, one baptism, one God and Father of all. I am a member of the One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic Church. When I say that I am Catholic, I say it for the benefit of others, not for myself. It means nothing for one to call ones self "Catholic" as we can see in the American Catholic Church today where so many dissent from the Faith. The Church is both visible and invisible. If you have been baptized properly, you are a member of the Church which means that you, too, are Catholic although you don't realize it.



Re: Sola Scriptura --
You say the only safe guard is the Bible. God loves His children more than you think. He provided a means whereby the ignorant and unstable could learn His truth without fear of being led astray. He did not leave us orphans to be tossed about with every wind of doctrine. Up until the 1930s every Christian Church in the world taught that contraception is evil. Every
single one. I believe it was the Anglican Church which was the first to allow contraception. Over the decades up until now, one by one, Protestant churches dropped their teaching against contraception. It's an historical fact easy to be researched. I recommend you check it out sometime. It's a travesty. Just look what Protestantism has become. It is based not in the Bible but in the self.



Re: Certainty of Authority --
Am I sure it is His Church? If it is not His Church then He has no church.



Re: Paul went to the Greeks / Christ was crucified by Romans and Jews --
I don't know what your point is in telling me that the Apostle Paul went to the Greeks and that the Romans and the Jews crucified Jesus. We all crucified Jesus. Every single one of us. The Bible is not a numbers game. There is deep meaning in the Bible that applies equally to our time, but it is not a Rubik's Cube or a recipe book. You say that you question powers. Perhaps this is the problem. You have a problem with anyone being in authority over you, but how can I respect your position when the Bible testifies that we should obey the leaders of the Church?



Re: "powers" --
The Church's greatest heroes are the weakest and humblest who have ever lived. Our power is in Christ as God's strength is made perfect in weakness. Mother Teresa is an example of a TRUE Catholic. What you read in the papers is not an example of true Catholicism. True Catholicism is that which is lived in one's daily life as Mother Teresa lived. Most bishops in America
are not in agreement with the Vatican on many things. It's a terrible situation here. The Church is full of wolves, but you should never mistake the wolves for the sheep.



Re: Zionism --
Zionism is a political issue that even many Jews do not believe in. I was reading about Jerry Falwell crawling under Israeli tanks to grease them while slick, young Israeli soldiers leaned against the wall and rested. These tanks are not defensive. They are oppressive. The Israeli government will not honor treaties that it signs, just like Hitler did with Chamberlain and others. They will do anything for self-preservation, even if it means bulldozing Palestinian homes and leaving the Palestinians cold and hungry. Palestinian women in labor go to hospitals, which are run by Israelis, and are denied treatment simply because they are Palestinian. I've read that the suicide bombings that have taken place in Israel can be traced to operatives of Saddam Hussein. I have no pity for the Zionist position. What I have pity for is the downtrodden. That is my agenda, and the reason that it is my agenda is because it is Christ's agenda. We are to lift up the downtrodden always, no matter whom they may be. This is why I speak for the people of Palestine at this time. Tomorrow, I may speak for the people of Israel. Whomever is being brutalized is the one I speak for, and today that one is
Palestine.



RE: when the Lord will return --
If He comes today I will rejoice in Him. With all due respect, I don't care when you think He will come. Who are you? I mean, really.

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