#5 Is the Roman Catholic Church Necessary for Salvation?
What the Bible says about salvation:
But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. Romans 10:8-10
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. John 3:36
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Let God’s curse fall on anyone, including us or even an angel from heaven, who preaches a different kind of Good News than the one we preached to you. Galatians 1:8
Know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified. Galatians 2:16
The Roman Catholic Church says:
“There is only one universal Church of the faithful, outside of which no one at all can be saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215)
“We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, in the bull, Unam Sanctam, 1302)
“The Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes, and teaches, that none of those who are not within the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but Jews, heretics and schismatics, can ever be partakers of eternal life, but are to go into the eternal fire ‘prepared for the devil, and his angels’ (Mt. 25:41)., unless before the close of their lives they shall have entered into that Church; also that the unity of the ecclesiastical body is such that the Church’s sacraments avail only those abiding in that Church, and that fasts, alms deeds, and other works of piety which play their part in the Christian combat are in her alone productive of eternal rewards; moreover, that no one, no matter what alms he may have given, not even if he were to shed his blood for Christ’s sake, can be saved unless he abide in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.” (Mansi, Concilia, xxxi, 1739; Pope Eugene IV, in the bull, Cantate Domino, 1441).
Today whenever there is the occasion for the Catholic Church to mention this dogma, as is exampled in this article by Jim Blackburn of Catholic Answers titled What “No Salvation Outside the Church” Means, they are careful to accompany it with an explanation, which guts it of all its original meaning. Pope Ratzinger said that “We know that out of the Church there is no salvation; but many are they who, by want of opportunity of learning the truth, innocently adhere to error, and thus are in spirit members of the Church.” This explanation contradicts and cancels out the dogma and makes the declaration appear a mere rhetorical embellishment. The Catholics have made a profession and a virtue out of lying, subterfuge, and sophistry. Wherever they are not pleased with what some pope has said Ex cathedra or otherwise, they simply explain it away, and never even blush. I have in my files a very long list of Church quotes that prove that when they said there is no salvation outside of the Roman Catholic Church that that is exactly what they meant.
Today it is not popular for the Roman Catholic Church to take such a dictatorial stance. In light of the great ecumenical move by the Catholic Church, to bring all the separated brethren back into the fold, such a dogmatic statement is counterproductive. The answer to such a dilemma is to cover all those statements over with a mountain of useless verbal nonsense and confusion. To say that these men meant something other than what they said is totally dishonest. St. Cyprian makes no mistake with his words, qui ecclesiam non habet matrem (He cannot have God for his Father who does not have the Church for his Mother.)
Orestes Brownson (1803-1876) who is proclaimed by some to be the greatest apologist for the Catholic faith which this country has ever produced says the following concerning the above statements.
The implications of these pronouncements, taken together, are as follows:
1. All three of these statements are ex cathedra definitions of the Church and of the Pontiffs who made them. (Ex cathedra means that these are infallible teachings of the Church which all persons must believe in order to be saved. These teachings are not subject to change as the popes in making these declarations of faith were guided by the Holy Ghost, Who is unchangeable.)
2. Let the reader accept the reasonable fact that the Pontiffs who pronounced these decrees were perfectly literate and fully cognizant of what they were saying. If there were any need to soften or qualify their meanings, they were quite capable of doing so. They were not regarded as heretics or fanatics at the time of their pronouncements, and have never been labeled such by the Church to this very day. It is an easy thing for the people of this “enlightened” age to fall into the modern delusion that the men of former times, especially those of the Middle Ages, were not as bright as we are, so that they sometimes said they know not what.
3. Since the aforementioned formula (Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus) is a doctrine of Catholicity, it is the standard of orthodoxy on the subject of salvation; which is to say, all writers, whether they be saints and/or Doctors, of old or of late, all popes and theologians, of whatever era, and their pronouncements are reliable in their treatment of this subject, if they accept and support it. Their testimony or opinions are useless (at best), if they do not, this regardless of any other contribution they may have made to Catholic erudition. The same must be said of the works of all Catholic writers.
4. Such a dogmatic statement is not to be colored, or reduced, or altered, by reference to the Sacred Scriptures. On the contrary, it is in terms of such a statement that all the Scriptures are to be read and understood.
5. The doctrine determines who has good will and who has bad will. Those who have bad will are in the state of sin. In rejecting God’s accredited word and work, they reveal their true selves: They choose not to be among those of whom Christ spoke when he said: “I know mine, and mine know me.” (Jn. 10:14). When it is responded that certain individuals do not know that what they are hearing is God’s word, the reply is: What is being said demands that careful inquiry be made. If the inquiry is made with the disposition of humility, integrity, and courage, the inquirer will find that the word cannot be denied. No argument or evidence has ever been discovered which will leave the honest man free of the revealed word’s imperative.
6. It is important that the reader who thinks he disagrees with the literal reading of these decrees not throw his hands up in indignation and put this paper aside. It should be obvious that the reason Catholics regard heresy with such horror and alarm is this very doctrine. For if there is salvation outside the Church, what difference does it make whether one is in the Church or out of It, whether one is a heretic in the judgment of the Church or not? Really, if to deny this doctrine is not heresy, there is no such thing as heresy, and it would have been pointless, as well as illogical, for the Church to attach such severe censures to the denial of this or any other doctrine.
7. This dogma rules out the possibility of simple invincible ignorance concerning the matter of salvation; those who die in ignorance of the Church as the only course of salvific grace must be adjudged to have been culpably so. In a word, they did not know because they did not want to know.
Quoted below are three worthy statements in support of this Dogma of the Faith:
“It is a sin to believe that there is salvatin outside the Catholic Church.”
– Venerable Pope Pius IX
“There is no salvation outside the Catholic Church. Anyone who resists this truth perishes.”
– St. Louis Maria de Montfort
“We must believe that the Roman Catholic Church is the only true church; hence they who are out of our Church or they who are separated from it, cannot be saved.”
– St. Alphonsus Maria Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
What is the Devil’s goal upon this earth? Is it not, in every way possible, to block the path of truth so as to bar the door of salvation. Earth is a prison colony of fallen angles, i.e. demons and enslaved human souls. Jesus’ mission is to “seek and to save that which was lost” due to the tragedy in Eden. Human nature is 180 degrees out of sync with the life of the Spirit. Our lostness is not obvious to us because we have been blinded by the evil forces that rule the prison. The human prisoners sense the evil and even curse its darkness, then entertain themselves with the most horrendous forms of movies, literature, music, life styles, language, violence, and news depicting the very limits of the darkness that disgust them. Even those who claim to follow the Prince of Peace never pass up the opportunity to join forces with the oppressors to do themselves, and enforce on others, the things forbidden by the One they claim to follow. They kill, judge, slander, provoke to violence, incite hate, praise worldliness in eating, drinking, dress, returning evil for evil, yet with great religious pride call themselves “Christian,” as if the very word sanctifies their evil deeds. It is these folks, along with all the rest, that Jesus has come to “seek and to save.” The darkness of these latter prisoners is the blackest of darkness. They have effectively joined forces with evil while convinced of their goodness and righteousness and Heaven bound journey.
We cannot talk about Catholic thinking without mentioning their almost exclusive claim to the word “casuistry,” which when properly understood regarding the Catholic use of the word, is no different than the word “sophistry.” The whole history of the Roman Catholic Church is one of fraud, forgery, deceit, lying, casuistry, equivocation, and sophistry. All of this is plainly seen in their crown jewel of corruption, the Society of Jesus, the Jesuits, of which Pope Francis is a member. It is well known that the very name “jesuit” is offensive and insulting, because it is synonymous with deceit and evil.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Casuistry is reasoning used to resolve moral problems by extracting or extending theoretical rules from particular instances and applying these rules to new instances. The term is also commonly used as a pejorative to criticize the use of clever but unsound reasoning (alleging implicitly the inconsistent—or outright specious—misapplication of rule to instance), especially in relation to moral questions (see sophistry).
While a principle-based approach might claim that lying is always morally wrong, the casuist would argue that, depending upon the details of the case, lying might or might not be illegal or unethical. The casuist might conclude that a person is wrong to lie in legal testimony under oath, but might argue that lying actually is the best moral choice if the lie saves a life.
One of the main theses of casuists was the necessity to adapt the rigorous morals of the Early Fathers of Christianity to modern morals, which led in some extreme cases to justify what Innocent XI later called “laxist moral” (i.e. justification of usury, homicide, regicide, lying through “mental reservation”, adultery and loss of virginity before marriage, etc.—all due cases registered by Pascal in the Provincial Letters).
Casuistry was much mistrusted by early Protestant theologians, because it justified many of the abuses that they sought to reform. It was famously attacked by the Catholic and Jansenist philosopher Pascal, during the formulary controversy against the Jesuits, in his Provincial Letters as the use of rhetoric to justify moral laxity, which became identified by the public with Jesuitism; hence the everyday use of the term to mean complex and sophistic reasoning to justify moral laxity. By the mid-18th century, “casuistry” had become a synonym for moral laxity.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Ignatius of Loyola founded the society after being wounded in battle and experiencing a religious conversion. He composed the Spiritual Exercises to help others follow the teachings of Jesus Christ. In 1534, Ignatius and six other young men, including Francis Xavier and Peter Faber, gathered and professed vows of poverty, chastity, and later obedience, including a special vow of obedience to the Pope. Rule 13 of Ignatius’s Rules for Thinking with the Church stated:
That we may be altogether of the same mind and in conformity … if [the Holy See of the Universal Church (Roman Catholic Church)] shall have defined anything to be black which to our eyes appears to be white, we ought in like manner to pronounce it to be black.
In plain English this means they define truth according to their own dictates, regardless of what the Bible or plain common sense says. Their vow to the Pope, in essence, is a vow of corruption and deceit. A Jesuit, as history has proven, and their own words confess, cannot be trusted at all, since his life is aligned, not to the teachings of Christ, but to Christ’s adversary, the Devil, who is a liar, and the father of all lies.
The verdict against the Roman Catholic Church is very simple after reading the Bible and a little bit of history. “But there is little hope for you ever doing good, you who are so accustomed to doing evil. Can an Ethiopian change the color of his skin? Can a leopard remove its spots?” (Jeremiah 13:23).
Just as everything the Roman Catholic Church teaches is corrupted so is their profession that there is no salvation outside their church. The truth is just the opposite of their doctrine; there is no salvation inside the Roman Catholic Church. The Bible commands that those who belong to the Lord, and for whatever reason go to the Catholic Church, to:
Come out of her, my people, so that you will not participate in her sins and receive of her plagues; for her sins have piled up as high as heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities.… (Revelation 18:4-5).