COMMENTS ON "COMPILATION 8"

A Response To
Roman Catholic Teaching

by Francois

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All quotes are from The Living Bible, unless noted otherwise. Unfortunately, I have no other English translation at hand, as my home language is not English. All texts quoted however will have exactly the same meaning if controlled in other accepted versions or translations. - Francois.

On reading Compilation 8 (for want of a better name or title for Michael's efforts) I experienced a deep disappointment and feeling of regret at so many people being mislead to the point where they could be destined to suffer in Hell for all eternity - which could very well be the result if all the tenets and teachings, which are contained in Compilation 8, are believed.

Please note: This is NOT an effort to break down the efforts of the originator and compiler of Compilation 8 - it must have taken long hours (at least) of hard work to collect all the elements together in the form presented. My point is this: That, if it is believed, some people are going to be horribly disappointed at the end of their lives, finding that there is no second chance in Purgatory; that they should have trusted Christ fully, instead of wanting to contribute to their own Salvation by "good works"; and eventually - too late - realizing that they have been close to the truth, but not close enough.

Once again, I am not going to post this argument to all concerned; rather, I will address it to those whom I have come to view as the "trend setters", the opinion leaders; and I wish to challenge all those who read this to pass it on to others who share their views.

1. Basis for arguments

All the statements and opinions contained in my reasoning are from the Bible, the complete, God-inspired Word of God.

II Timothy 3:16: Every Scripture was given to us by inspiration from God and is invaluable to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong with our lives; it straightens us out and helps us do what is right.

II Peter 1:20,21: For no prophecy recorded in Scripture was ever thought up by the prophet himself. It was the Holy Spirit within these godly men who gave them true messages from God.

The Bible, the Word of God, was given to us by the Holy Spirit, and not one iota was given by man as man - always by man as an instrument of the Holy Spirit.

Editors Note: In the original Greek, the reference in II Peter 1:21 says, literally, that "godly men of old spoke as they were driven by the Holy Spirit". Although in this passage it is not usually translated this way, the Greek word for "driven" is translated that way elsewhere in the New Testament. See Acts 27: 17 & 27. Same Greek word. See also Jeremiah 20:9, for an example of what that experience was like.

The Bible as the true Word of God can be proven to have prophesied certain events that were fulfilled after the completion of the last books contained in the Bible as we know it; however, it will be assumed that the reader does not doubt the fact that the Bible, is the Word of God.

2. The "Rapture"

There is no scriptural basis for the tenet about the Rapture. But does that make a lot of difference?

It is the duty of every Christian to be ready at all times - the "end of the world" and the Second Coming will be a reality for me should I be killed in a car accident in 30 minutes' time; or if I die in 30 years' time. Let us therefor not waste time and precious energy by speculating about issues which are not proven fact, and cling to what God has given us very clearly in His Word - the Bible.

3. Expecting the "End of the World/Time"

According Paul's epistle to the Thessalonians (II Thes. 3:6-13), some of the faithful took the imminent nature of the Second Coming of Christ so literally that they actually stopped working, and waited for the Second Coming as if it were literally only days away. (This apparently caused them to become a burden to their fellow Christians). Paul warns against this, and says that "they must not tire of doing good..." (Freely translated from the 1983 Afrikaans translation). While it is good to "speculate" about the coming tribulation and possible dates for this, it should never detract from our active work for God - which includes the spreading of the Gospel, and continued commitment to God in Jesus Christ and spiritual growth through regular Bible study. I am aware that for some of my brothers in the Roman Catholic Church this may be a strange statement, as lay members of the Roman Catholic Church are not supposed to interpret the Bible; however, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, it is possible to discover God's riches through devoted study of the Bible. A study and report by one David J. Riggs listed the following:

"No religious institution on earth has as much to fear about its members reading the Bible as the Catholic Church. When Catholics study the Bible they learn that in order to please God, they must discard the many false doctrines which their church has accumulated over the centuries. Following is an excerpt from an address given by the Cardinals to Pope Pius III, and is preserved in the National Library of Paris, Folio No. 1068, Vol. 2, pp. 650 651:

"'Of all the advice that we can offer your holiness we must open your eyes well and use all possible force in the matter, namely to permit the reading of the gospel as little as possible in all the countries under your jurisdiction. Let the very little part of the gospel suffice which is usually read in mass, and let no one be permitted to read more. So long as people will be content with the small amount, your interest will prosper; but as soon as the people want to read more, your interest will fail. The Bible is a book, which more than any other, has raised against us the tumults and tempests by which we have almost perished. In fact, if one compares the teaching of the Bible with what takes place in our churches, he will soon find discord, and will realize that our teachings are often different from the Bible, and oftener still, contrary to it.'"

I would absolutely resent the above being true; however, I have to accept it at face value, as the acceptance of so many false doctrines makes sense in the light of the above. The above may be verified by my Roman Catholic friends who may have access to these documents.

4. Purgatory

In the discussion of the subject of Purgatory, certain statements were made that beg to be addressed.

  • "Conscious unrepented mortal sin is what sends a soul to Hell. A perfectly clean soul goes straight to Heaven. Therefore a not-quite-clean ........ soul must have a place to go to be purified";
  • Certain texts (notably Rom. 14:10, II Corinthians 5:10 and I Corinthians 3:10-15) are listed as describing the nature of Purgatory;
  • God will allegedly not be unfair by condemning someone to Hell for ignorance, i.e. not knowing about the Gospel

(a) As for the statement that "conscious unrepented sin sends a soul to Hell", it must be noted that Christ's sacrifice on the cross was complete and sufficient, meaning that all sin ever committed on earth was punished on Christ. In His unending love, God the Father, who had to punish sin, sent His Son to take the punishment - as only someone who is truly God can withstand God's punishment, and only one who is truly man can be the object (receiver) of God's punishment and survive it. If I need to suffer more "punishment" or "purification" for my own sin, then it indicates that the work of Christ on the cross was not sufficient, and I still have to contribute a little bit. This is contrary to God's Word, as indicated by Galatians 2:21b - "For if we could be saved by keeping Jewish laws, then there was no need for Christ to die" In essence then, Christ's suffering and death on the cross was one hundred per cent sufficient for man to be saved, and no single contribution can be made by any man to augment Christ's work. When Jesus said "It is complete" on the cross, the word used in the original Greek text is tetelestai which word would also be used when the last installment on a hire purchase is paid - everything is paid, nothing is outstanding.

How does one then get to Heaven/receive Salvation? By faith alone, and not by works! (See in this regard especially Ephesians 2:8-9 - "Because of his kindness you have been saved through trusting Christ. And even trusting is not of yourselves; it too is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good we have done, so none of us can take any credit for it" (No credit - not towards Salvation, not for recognition, nothing!)

Faith in this regard, simply means trusting Christ to get me to Heaven, and accepting that He had paid the full price for my sins - and then LIVING the life of a freeman, free from the punishment of sin.

And this is what makes the whole Christian doctrine so difficult to accept: We are used to the tenet that you do not get anything for nothing - and here God is giving us Salvation for free!! I do hear some people say "to good to be true". But yes, it is true, and simply a wonderful demonstration of God's love - love without any reason (God does not love me because I do or did this or that - He simply loves me - no "because" or nothing - HE LOVES EVERYBODY!!!!)

Yes, James states that faith without good works has no substance - James 2:14. So, my faith has to lead to good works, else it is not true faith. When I truly believe that I have been set free from the effects of the law of Moses, I rejoice so much that I focus on my Salvation, and in this process the Holy Spirit takes over my life, and as long as I stay focussed on devoting myself to God, the Holy Spirit places the urge in me to do good works. If, however, my faith is such that it does not lead to good works, it means that my faith is simply a mental recognition of facts - and these facts are not believed with my whole being.

When I therefor surrender myself to Christ, all my sins are paid for, and there is no such thing as I have to pay a little more, because some of my sins have not been forgiven. I go straight to Heaven! (Please refer to Romans 8 for an excellent explanation of the work of the Holy Spirit)

The tenet of Purgatory is a false teaching, and can lead to people thinking that they need not make a full commitment on earth, as they will get a second chance in Purgatory. I find it astounding that people can believe that saying a few words can release 1000 souls from Purgatory.... GOD IS NOT INFLUENCED BY A REPETITION OF WORDS, BUT ONLY BY A TOTAL CONVERSION OF THE HEART WHILE IN THIS LIFE, HERE ON EARTH!

(b) The Scripture quoted in Compilation 8 as describing the nature of Purgatory, in actual fact describe God's judgment - I will be judged by the works I have done. HOWEVER, when God looks at me and my deeds, and I am in Christ, He looks at me through Jesus Christ's sacrifice, and all He sees is - FORGIVEN. For those who are not in Christ, however, God looks at their actual deeds and works, sees literally bad things, and condemns such a person to Hell forever. Such a person in effect then has rejected Christ, and in the process of rejecting Him, the person takes the punishment for his sins squarely on his own shoulders. This punishment is ETERNAL DAMNATION.

A popular bumper sticker often used by Christians simply states: Not perfect, just forgiven. And that summarizes everything.

(c) The statement that God will not be unfair, judging someone because of his ignorance. Such a person will go to Purgatory for punishment and purification, and then be allowed into Heaven. THIS IS NOT TRUE!

As humans, we cannot understand God - if we could, He would not be God to us, but on the same plane/level as we are. We can only form an idea of God through His Word, the Holy Bible.

Paul, in his letter to the Christians in Rome, in verses 18 - 20 of chapter 1, explains that God has revealed Himself in creation to everybody, and if people would not come to God because of nature and creation, then they would not come to God through any other message. They've had their chance so to speak, and God will not give them a second chance. God is love, but God is also just. (Cf. Deut.32:4) He has said that He will punish sin, and He has done that on Jesus. However, for those who are not in Jesus Christ, there is absolutely no hope - they are forever in Hell. That is why the instruction by Jesus to His disciples should be taken that much more seriously: every day delayed that people do not hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ, means more people dying without Salvation. In this regard, see God's verdict in Exodus 34:7b.

Let us take a human analogy (which is always dangerous, but in this case applicable): A little boy uses modeling clay to build little motorcars. At the end of the day, he smashes all of them, save one - which he keeps in his room until his old age. None of the cars can dispute his right to destroy them - he has made them, and has absolute power over them. God has made us, and we cannot dispute His right to save whom He wishes to reach with the Gospel......

5. Perfect Life

In a number of places in Compilation 8, mention is made of someone "living a perfect life..."

This is an impossibility. Creation is under the influence of sin, and nobody, not the holiest saint that ever walked the earth, has ever been without sin, except for Jesus Christ Himself. Contravention of one iota of the law, implies contravention of the total law - the law was given by one God.

The good news, however, is that the Holy Spirit frees us from the law (Rom 8:2, 13, II Corinthians 3:17), and enables us to meet the requirements of the law (Rom 7:6, II Corinthians 3:6, Galatians 5:16-17, 22-25).

6. The Status of Mary, mother of Jesus

Mary enjoys special status in the Catholic Church. She is "Mother of God, Perpetual Virgin, Immaculately conceived, Bodily taken into Heaven, and, soon to come, apparently, Co-Mediatrix, Co-Redemptrix and Advocate".

Yet:

  • If she were Mother of God, she would be God herself;
  • If she were perpetual virgin, then the Bible lies when it states that Jesus had brothers;
  • If she herself were without sin, why then did Jesus rebuke her when she looked for Him for three days, and, finding Him in the temple, teaching others, addressed Him on the issue? She must have been wrong (i.e., must have sinned!)
  • What proof is there of Mary's Assumption in Ephesus, except (fallible) tradition?
  • "There is but one God and one Mediator between God and man, Jesus Christ, Who gave Himself as ransom for all" (I Timothy 2:5,6 freely translated from the Afrikaans Bible, 1983 translation). If Mary be considered Mediatrix, even just between Christ and man, it would imply that Christ's sacrifice was insufficient to bridge the gap between God and man, which was created by man through sin. If Mary were to be Redemptrix, then Christ has died in vain. And, by believing that Christ's sacrifice was not sufficient, He is being held "in perpetual shame".

I wish to recommend a prayerful in-depth study of the book of Romans, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, for clarity and confirmation on all the issues raised here above. It is not worth an eternity in Hell to be so close to truth, but still removed from the full truth! In the name of our Lord Jesus, I beseech you - investigate! Prove your beliefs in the fire of God's Word, through the Holy Spirit.

When I started receiving all the interesting material (and Compilations, Michael!) I at first tried to make out for myself what is right and true, as so many of the Roman Catholic Church viewpoints were "confirmed" by the visions and apparitions. However, I have read some that are so blatantly false ("hang a black cloth in front of the window, then the devil cannot enter...") that the conclusion became very easy - doubt all of them. If I follow the Word of God, exclude all "private" revelation, and simply focus on deepening my relationship with Jesus Christ and submitting myself to the Holy Spirit, then all the warnings are futile for me personally, as I already have Salvation - PLUS I WILL BE READY FOR ANYTHING, INCLUDING THE TRIBULATION!

With love in Jesus Christ

Francois

Comments and questions please
to
francois.lr@mweb.co.za

 

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