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On This Page: | The Ultimate Question | Rome's Answers To Salvation | | Confession | 7 Sacraments | Grace | Indulgences | Mary | The Mass | Obedience to Rome's Rules | Church Membership | Submission to Pope | God's Answer to Salvation | Salvation at-a-Glance |

What Do You Think?

Perhaps the most critical question you could ever ask and answer is, "What must I do to be saved?" Your eternal destiny depends upon the answer. Before considering the information on this page, why not cast a vote for your answer to this question?

The Ultimate Question

Every person who believes there is a God is faced with one inescapable, ultimate question: "What must I do to be saved?!" All other questions pale to insignificance in light of this one. If you have not yet considered it, one day you will! But by then it may be too late for the answer to do you any good.

Do you really know what you must do to be saved, to have assurance of a place in Heaven? Well, my friend, Rome has answers (plural intended) for you. The cults have answers too. You can also find some answers in Buddhism, Hinduism and other religions. Finally, God Himself has an answer too!

Since this is The Roman Catholic Observer, I shall discount, out-of-hand, all available answers except the ones from Rome and the one from God. You see, these two answers to the ultimate question are very, very different. In fact, they are so different, so contradictory, they are mutually exclusive. That is, if one is right, the other must be wrong.
Question: What does God ask you to do to be saved (i.e., go to Heaven)?
Your Answer?
Your eternal salvation is the most important issue of your life! Please take the time to write down your answers to this question before you read God's answer and Rome's answers. Yes, answers! God has one answer; Rome has a basketful!

Read God's Answer!

Read Rome's Answers!
Another Question for you: If you find that God's answer and Rome's answers contradict each other, who's answer will you believe?------------> I would believe God's answer! I would believe Rome's answer!

Rome's Answers to SalvationROME'S STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN!

Rome has her answers to this question. Unfortunately most Roman Catholics really don't know for sure what Rome's answers are. Most have a vague idea of a place called 'Purgatory.' They wander through life with an unfounded belief that, if their 'good works' outweigh their 'sins' then they get a ticket to heaven. Others believe that just being a Roman Catholic is all that is required to get to Heaven. Well, not directly to Heaven, but by way of an untold period of time in unmentionable pain and suffering in Purgatory. Its not a pretty picture of salvation. Not at all. Are Roman Catholics well drilled in the various methods by which they can be saved? They used to be - before Vatican II and the Novus Ordo changes, but no longer. One of the saddest laments of a priest friend (Novus Ordo type) is that Catholics no longer know their own faith! Does this describe you?

Is it really important, my Roman Catholic reader, that you have a clear knowledge of what you must do to be saved - to go to Heaven? Let's see what one of the greatest popes of all time, Pope Saint Pius X, had to say about it:

"We declare that a great number of those who are condemned to eternal punishment suffer that everlasting calamity because of ignorance of those mysteries of faith which must be known and believed in order to be numbered among the elect." [Papal Encyclical Acerbo Nimis, Pope Saint Pius X, April 15, 1905, Paragraph 2.]

Here is your infallible proof that you must know the requirements for salvation as given by the Roman Catholic Church - or you will end up in Hell no matter how well you obey church rules. Some will tell you that all you need do is to "be in a state of grace" when you die; but they can't seem to tell you how to do that, or what is required per Pope Saint Pius X's infallible declaration.

Want to try your hand? Before reading further, why not use the following checklist? Check off either "yes" or "no" for the requirements for a Roman Catholic to be saved. Then compare your results with the text that follows.
Must you, as a Catholic, do or believe the following in order to go to Heaven? Yes No
1 Confess your sins to a Roman Catholic priest?
2 "Receive" all appropriate Roman Catholic sacraments?
3 Believe that Grace comes only via Rome's sacraments, and only through Mary?
4 Buy or earn as many indulgences as possible so as to avoid Purgatory?
5 Believe that Grace can only be distributed to you by Mary?
6 Attend the Roman Catholic Mass on all Sundays and holy days?
7 Obey all of Rome's rules (i.e., precepts of the Church)?
8 Be a member of the Roman Catholic Church?
9 Submit yourself to Pope John Paul II?

Alright! Now that you have recorded what you think you must do or believe to be saved, let's examine the requirements as set forth by the Roman Catholic Church. Rome offers nine (9) ways to be saved, and you are required to know, believe or do all of them. Here's the list:

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For a graphic portrayal of these methods for salvation, click here. Just click the BACK button to return to this page.

The Confessional

Roman Catholics, afraid of Purgatory, often go out of their way to earn or buy their salvation. The Roman Catholic Church supplies many opportunities to satisfy this fear. First comes the confessional, where you can confess your sins to a priest and get forgiven. After recounting your sins to the priest, he says the magical words, 'Ego te absolve....' (English: 'I forgive you...'). Are you forgiven? No, not really. The priest uses a favorite Roman Catholic rabbit hole called 'mental reservation,' in which he deliberately does not say the full, official Roman Catholic doctrine of forgiveness. Were he to say the whole truth, as offered by Rome, he would say, "I forgive you, sort of. You won't have to suffer punishment for your sins here in this world, in this body. But you will burn in Purgatory until you have personally 'expiated,' or paid the price for yourself."

Of course the Catholic person already knows this, so he/she just plays the game, and seldom, if ever, questions the inconsistency.
QUESTION: Why confess sins to a mere man when, by Rome's own definition, you always leave the confessional un-forgiven? Your Answer?

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The Sacraments

Rome's second offering in the area of salvation lies it its sacramental system. While the Bible defines two sacraments (baptism and communion), Rome adds another five - penance (i.e., the confessional as above), confirmation, marriage, holy orders, and extreme unction. None of these extra sacraments have any Biblical support.

According to Rome, "A sacrament is a sensible sign, instituted by Jesus Christ, which confers the grace it signifies."(1)

Instituted by Christ?

One requirement for a Roman Catholic sacrament is that it be 'instituted by Jesus Christ.' While it is clear from the Bible that Baptism and Communion are sacraments to be performed, there is no similar evidence that Jesus officially formulated the practices of the other five Roman Catholic sacraments. In fact, there is no Biblical record that He even knew about them!
QUESTION: How can Rome claim that Jesus instituted its seven sacraments when the Biblical evidence so clearly proves otherwise?

Your Answer?

Sacraments Necessary for Salvation?

The Roman Catholic Church says that, "According to the way God has willed that we be saved, the sacraments are necessary for salvation."(2)

QUESTION: Does the Bible say that seven sacraments are necessary for salvation?

ANSWER: No, it does not. In fact, the Bible does not say that even one is necessary!
QUESTION: How can Rome say that "According to the way God has willed that we be saved, the sacraments are necessary for salvation." when there is not a shred of evidence that it is God's will?

Your Answer?

Who Can Administer Sacraments?

Rome says that "The minister of a sacrament is the one who has the power to administer it [when] he dispenses it by right of his office. The minister of a sacrament must have the intention of doing what the Church wants."(3) Further, the Church says that "Faith and the state of grace are not required to confer the sacraments validly because the sacraments communicate grace in virtue of the rite itself."(4)

Of course, 'the one who has the power to administer it (the sacraments), refers to the priests and their superiors (who, after all, is installed in an 'office' of the church to do such things?).
QUESTION: What happens if the priest or bishop who is 'administering' a sacrament does not "have the intention of doing what the church wants.?!"

Your Answer?

Since humans are humans, it is reasonable to believe that there are cases in which the priest or bishop has no such intention, and is merely performing a required ritual. Thus, there are many people who think they have, for example, been married by the priest, who, in very fact, according to Rome's own definitions, are not validly married! If not validly married, they are therefore living in sin - mortal sin at that! According to Rome's theology, those Catholic people will go straight to hell! The logic is inescapable!
QUESTION: Can a Protestant Administer Catholic Sacraments?

Your Answer?

Rome's Answer According to Rome's own definitions (see above), the answer has to be 'Yes!' How can this be? Well, according to Rome, no Protestant can possibly be of the Roman Catholic Faith, nor can they be in a 'state of grace' because they are not Roman Catholic. But because "the sacraments communicate grace in virtue of the rite itself," it is irrelevant who performs the rite. According to Rome, all that is required for a valid sacrament, is that the ceremony, or the rite, be performed, word-for-word. Intentions are not important, faith is not important, one's spiritual condition is not important. Rome says so! So it is that a Protestant, a Hindu, a Buddhist, a Morman, a whatever, can, for example, turn you into a Roman Catholic. Imagine that. If any of you surfers can find a way out of this embarrassing quandary, go to my Message Board and have at it!

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Obedience to Rome's Rules is Essential to Salvation

If you don't believe this, ask any Catholic what will happen to them if they deliberately miss mass on a Sunday or 'holy day of obligation.' Ask them what will happen to them if they challenge the Pope's authority, or if they deliberately eat meat during times it is forbidden, or if they refuse to fast the required length of time before taking communion. Ask any Catholic where they will end up if they practice birth control, or get divorced and remarried! These and a host of other 'no-no's' automatically consign you to a place in Hell according to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. In brief, the Roman Catholic person has a lengthy checklist of church rules to obey-or else!
QUESTION: Does the Bible condemn to hell anyone who fails to attend church, go to the sacrament of penance (sic., confession), eat Jesus in the Eucharist, or who eats meat on Fridays, uses birth control or gets divorced and remarried?

Your Answer?

No. In fact, there are Scriptures that directly contradict Rome's position here. When it comes to divorce and remarriage, the Bible does speak of it, but in far less stringent terms than does Rome. In fact, the Bible actually allows for divorce under certain conditions (Matthew 5:31-32; 19:9; 1 Cor 7:10-15). Finally, unlike Rome, the Bible does NOT view divorce and remarriage as an unforgivable sin. See Divorce for more information. Also, surf over to Annie for a heart-rending story of one woman's experience with this subject.

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Grace: the Means of Salvation

According to Rome, grace, which is the Biblical means of salvation, can only be obtained, or conferred upon the individual by means of Rome's sacramental system. Sorry, but God seems to have delegated this responsibility to the Popes and their subordinates, and is therefore no longer in the grace business. If you expect to get grace directly from God, you are out of luck. You are also under one or more of Rome's curses:
If anyone saith that the grace of God through Jesus Christ is given only for this, that man may be able more easily to live justly and to merit eternal life let him be anathema (cursed)! [CANNON II](5)
"If anyone saith that by faith alone the impious is justified; in such wise as to mean that nothing else is required to cooperate in order to the obtaining the grace of justification.... let him be anathema (cursed)! [CANNON IX](6)
"If anyone saith that, after the grace of justification has been received, to every penitent sinner the guilt is remitted, and the debt of eternal punishment is blotted out in such wise that there remains not any debt of temporal punishment to be discharged either in this world, or in the next in Purgatory let him be anathema (cursed)! [CANNON XXX](7)
QUESTION: Can you see that Rome condemns to hell anyone who trusts directly in the mercy and grace of God?


QUESTION: Can you see how Rome substitutes her man-made sacramental system of salvation for the simple promise of salvation given by God? Yes No

Now compare these declarations of Rome with the attendant curses, with the following from the Word of God:

"Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast." (Ephesians 2: 6-9)
QUESTION: Can you see how Rome directly contradicts the Word of God?


QUESTION: Who will you believe - God or Rome? God Rome

Cannon number XXX is especially interesting in its mention of Purgatory, a concept both foreign and unknown to the Bible or any of its writers.
QUESTION: Don't you find it amazing that Rome has obtained an exclusive franchise on grace something obtainable from God and from God alone? How did she do that? Yes No
QUESTION: Don't you find it interesting that Rome has attached a price tag, in terms of either the performance of certain rituals and good works (often both), and even money (e.g., for mass cards) to that which the God of the Bible gives for free? Yes No
QUESTION: Is Rome's understanding of grace the same as the Bible's understanding? Yes No

Is Rome's understanding of grace the same as the Bible's understanding? Definitely not! The Protestant's understanding of grace is exactly the same as the Bible's understanding. Rome's understanding, as indicated above, is the most convoluted, nearly incomprehensible concept imaginable. The Bible shows grace to be a free gift of God; Rome sells grace for a price, and uses her concept of it to keep her people in fearful bondage to herself.

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Indulgences: Pay Now, be Saved Later

Rome includes in her assortment of salvation tickets her doctrine of indulgences. According to Rome, "An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints."(8)

Hold it! What's this? We need to burn in Purgatory, despite the priest's claim to have power to forgive our sins, but there's a way to buy yourself out of it? Yes indeed, folks! Step right up and get your indulgences here! Small money, small indulgences; big money, big inROME, WAITING FOR YOUR MONEYdulgences. Rome calls them 'partial' and 'plenary' indulgences.

Yes folks, as we saw above, according to Rome, God has gone out of the grace and salvation business, leaving it all to Rome. And for a price, you can get what you need. Catholics would be smart to purchase, or work for a half-dozen or so plenary indulgences to keep on hand in case they get hit by a bus on the way to confession. Oh, sorry about that. . . sometimes I can't help it. Even if they get to confession they are going to need this insurance policy. For the right price, you can buy a 'mass card' with a plenary indulgence attached. Catholics generally buy them to use at wakes and funerals, and on the death anniversary of loved ones.

It once puzzled me why we had to keep on buying the mass cards and paying to have masses said for deceased loved ones until a priest informed me that, no, he could NOT assure me that my aunt Bessie was now out of Purgatory (she died thirty-seven years ago), so the safe bet was to keep buying. It is no longer a puzzle. The priest does not have to account for the money he gets for saying masses. It all goes into his own pocket. So why on earth should he comfort me? Why on earth should he advise me that one, single, plenary indulgence was sufficient to spring any soul from Purgatory? Why spoil such a money-maker?

QUESTION: Does the subject of indulgences appear in the Bible?

ANSWER: No. Period.

QUESTION: Did Jesus, his Apostles, or disciples sell indulgences, or offer them in exchange for designated good works?

ANSWER: You have to be kidding! Show me just one incontrovertible proof and dinner is on me.
QUESTION: Can you see that the entire concept of indulgences is a man-made thing, without a shred of Biblical Support? Yes No
QUESTION: If you still believe in indulgences, can you give just one example where Jesus, His Apostles, or His Disciples, either sold or offered indulgences in exchange for good works, to get people out of Purgatory? Yes

Give Example

QUESTION: Can you see that the concept of indulgences is really only a money-making scheme that preys on the gullible and fearful? Yes No
QUESTION: Now that you know the truth about indulgences, what shall you do about it? Your answer?

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Mary is Essential to Salvation

A Roman Catholic Apologist

I can't let this opportunity pass without telling you what is now being said by leading Roman Catholic apologists such as Karl Keating. You really have to read this to believe the direction in which Rome seems to be heading. Here it is:
"Mary is the Mediatrix of all graces because of her intercession for us in heaven. What this means is that no grace accrues to us without her intercession.... through God's will, grace is not conferred on anyone without Mary's cooperation."(9)

Mr. Keating is speaking of a matter of Roman Catholic doctrine. Can we trust what he says? Consider that his book (see endnote 9) carries the imprimatur and Ninil Obstat - marks that it has been officially approved by Rome as being free of doctrinal error. So the answer is "Yes-you can trust that Keating speaks for Rome, at least on doctrinal matters-which this matter surely is."

St. Alphonsus Liguori

Now let us examine the declarations of one of Rome's greatest theologians, St. Alphonsus Liguori. The following citations are from The Glories of Mary, by St. Alphonsus Liguori, Copyright 1990 by the Society of St. Paul -ISBN 0-8189-0561-1.

"Listen," Exclaims St. Bonaventure, "listen, all you who desire the kingdom of God: honor the Blessed Virgin Mary and you will find life and eternal salvation."[Page 21]

". . . The designs by which He is able to dispense His mercy more abundantly to us, for desiring to redeem the whole human race. He has placed the whole price of redemption in the hands of Mary, that she may dispense it at will." [Page 37]

"O my sovereign Lady, you are alone . . . the hope of my salvation." [Page 37]

". . . as Mary cooperated in the salvation of mankind with so much love, and at the same time gave such glory to God, so all men through her intercession are to obtain their salvation." [Page 60-61]

Rome acknowledges that it is by grace that we are saved. She then assigns herself as the sole dispenser of that grace via her sacramental system. Rome has now gone a step further from the Gospel truth by declaring that no one can receive God's grace without the intervention of Mary! Thus, Rome is saying, quite clearly, "There is no salvation outside of Mary!" While this is current Roman Catholic doctrine, it has yet to reach the stage of being a dogma. But stay tuned, friends. There is a growing ground swell in the Roman Catholic Church to do exactly that! I would not be surprised if this additional perversion of the Gospel becomes the next "Ex-Cathedra" declaration from Rome.

Really! Think of the implications! Since only Roman Catholics worship Mary, and since the Roman Catholic Church insists that it is the only true church, outside of which there is no salvation, I'm afraid we poor Protestants are in big trouble. Since we don't accept the authority of Rome, and we don't pray to or worship dead people, Rome has placed a curse on all of us destined us all to hell. Evidently God is staying out of the fray. According to the doctrines of Rome, God is no longer in the business of grace, salvation, sanctification, forgiveness or redemption. According to Rome, Jesus now takes second place to his mother.

QUESTION: Has God stopped being God?

ANSWER: Somehow I doubt it! What do you think?

QUESTION: Does the Bible tell us to turn to Mary for grace or salvation?

ANSWER: No, it does not. But it does tell us to turn only to Jesus Christ. Many times over.

QUESTION: Is there any record of Jesus, the Apostles or disciples turning to Mary for salvation?

ANSWER: No. Not a single word of it.

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The Mass Is Essential to Salvation

According to Rome, "Sunday is to be a day of gladness and rest from work. The duty to assist at Mass is a grave obligation."(10) The Roman Catholic person knows that the expression 'grave obligation' means that he or she will be condemned to Hell for deliberately missing Mass on a Sunday or a 'holy day of obligation.' Rome's response to the commandment to 'keep holy the Lord's day' is to demand, under pain of mortal sin, that we "assist at Mass on Sundays and to abstain from all unnecessary servile work."(11)

Since this commandment of God was given to Moses approximately four thousand years ago, long, long before the 'mass' was known, I find it impossible to believe that this was what God had in mind! What do you think?

If God intended us to attend a ceremony called 'the Mass', He was quite capable of saying so, don't you think? Does the mere attendance at a ceremonial event signify that we are 'keeping holy the Lord's day?' Hardly. You can be there for the whole Mass with a mind that is in a whorehouse, right? You could be eagerly looking forward to getting it on with your sweetheart later in the day, or planning how to cheat on your taxes, or be busy organizing next week's Sodality supper social as the Mass drones on and on. This is holy?

On the flip side, you could, on the Lord's Day, be at the beach with your family, with your mind filled with thoughts of the Lord. Between dips in the ocean you could be reading the Bible and pondering the Word of God as sand runs through your toes, right? This is un-holy?

No, this mandatory attendance at Sunday Mass has nothing to do with the commandments, nor with holiness. Rather, it has to do with control! This is just one more way that the Roman Catholic Church maintains a stranglehold on her people the fear of missing Mass, and the subsequent damnation that goes with it. This is holy? This is Godly?

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You Must be a Roman Catholic to Be Saved!

Rome says that only baptized Roman Catholics can be saved, or go to heaven. Don't believe it? Read it for yourself:
Outside the Church there is no salvation. "How are we to understand this affirmation, often repeated by the Church Fathers? Re-formulated positively, it means that all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is His Body: Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the church, a pilgrim now on earth, it is necessary for salvation: (Catechism of the Catholic Church; #846, Page 224.)

"Urged by faith, we are obliged to believe and to maintain that the Church is one, holy, catholic and also apostolic. We believe in her firmly and we confess with simplicity that outside her there is neither salvation nor the remission of sins." (Papal Bull UNAM SANCTUM, Pope Boniface VIII, November 18, 1302)

There you have the official, supposedly infallible, Roman Catholic position on salvation. You must be a Roman Catholic to be saved. A pretty cavalier statement, don't you think?

Rome then goes on to contradict herself, in the same catechism, on the preceding page, when she says that:
Outside the Church there is salvation. "Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation."

(Same source, #847, Page 224)

"The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God..."

(Same source; #841, Page 223)

Do you see the inherent contradiction in these two official statements from Rome? First, you can't be saved outside of the Roman Catholic Church - then, even the Muslims are saved 'because they acknowledge the Creator.' These two statements are mutually exclusive: if one is right, the other has to be wrong. Yet Rome, and the millions who have been duped by her, have little trouble reconciling inconsistencies: they just ignore them and believe what they are told.

Why Rome chose the Muslims to have equal rights puzzles me. Doesn't Rome realize that one of the primary purposes of the Muslims, derived from their own 'sacred' writings, is to eliminate as many Christians as possible?! It is a proven fact. The two groups most hated by the Muslims are the Jews and the Christians. It is the Muslim belief that they earn a higher place in their Heaven for each Christian or Jew that they murder.

In addition to much documented evidence, I have a really close-to-home example. In November of 1997, we took into our home a woman named Inna along with her son. They had just arrived from Russia to seek medical help for the boy. Inna told me how, when she was living in Armenia, she witnessed murder by Muslims. From a hiding place, she watched as the Muslim bayoneted a pregnant woman in the stomach. He ripped the woman open, speared the baby inside, and flung it against the wall - with words of praise to his god on his lips. Such atrocities by the Muslims are not uncommon - yet the Roman Catholic Church sees them as equals in faith?

QUESTION: Do you agree with Rome that the Muslims are automatically saved because they believe in God?
Your Answer: See God's Opinion

Rome wants you to believe that the Muslims hold a 'first place' in the queue for salvation, just because the Muslims believe in God?! Well, to that position, consider what the Word of God says:

"Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble." (James 2:19)

According to God's own Word, you are not saved just because you believe He exists. According to Rome, you are. Who do you choose to believe: God or Rome?

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You Must Submit to the Pope to be Saved

There remains yet another thing you must do to be saved, according to Rome: you must submit yourself to the pope! Here is the official, infallibly declared position of Rome:
"We declare, announce and define that it is altogether necessary for salvation for every creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff." (Papal Bull UNAM SANCTUM, Pope Boniface VIII, November 18, 1302)

There is no ambiguity here, is there? UNAM SANCTUM is, according to RCC teaching, a declared dogma of the Church. Dogmas cannot change as they are supposed to be 'divinely revealed, infallibly declared truth.' Catholics are therefore duty-bound to believe them, adhere to them, accept them as given. The penalty for refusing is to be excommunicated, anathematized, damned to hell.
QUESTION: Has the Catholic Church officially declared that submission to the Pope in necessary for salvation? Yes No
QUESTION: Does the Catholic Church officially declare that Muslims can be saved? Click her for the evidence. Yes No
QUESTION: Are the Muslims submitted to the Pope? Yes No
QUESTION: How do you reconcile this major contradiction between two official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church? Your Answer?

Post-Conciliar teachings from Rome appear to say that, besides the Muslims, many Protestants, Orthodox believers, Anglicans, etc., can also be saved. Yet NONE of these are submitted to the Pope as required by the infallible papal bull, UNAM SANCTUM. Is it any wonder that the modern Roman Catholic Church is in a state of confusion? Is it any wonder that large factions within that Church are at odds with each other. . . . that many actually believe that we have not had a valid pope for many years? Some large Roman Catholic groups, such as the Society of Pius X, go so far as to declare that Pope John Paul II (whom the irreverently nickname "JP2" and "Charlie") is an anti-pope?

The tight, traditional, 'always the same' Roman Catholic Church of the past has become so disintegrated that most Catholics no longer know what to believe. . . which I see as a state of increasing anarchy. How do you see it?

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God's Answer To Salvation

This section is much smaller. It has to be. God's answer to salvation is brief, simple, and easy to understand. There are lots and lots of Scriptures to prove it too. Perhaps the clearest Scripture of all is the story of the jail warden's encounter with Paul and Silas.(12)

When the warden thought all the prisoners had escaped, he was ready to commit suicide before his commanding officer did the job for him. But Paul told him to keep his cool, and he did. After seeing a real miracle, the warden asked a very simple, yet profound question: "What must I do to be saved?"

Paul's reply, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." (Acts 16:25-31) is as clear as you can get.

If Paul and Silas were good Catholics, why didn't they say "Well, mister warden, first you have to go to confession to a priest, who will forgive your sins (sort of). And then you have to attend mass every Sunday, and take communion at least once a year. Then you have to ask God's mother, that's Mary, to intercede for you, because without her help God can't give you any grace, and you need grace to be saved. And it wouldn't hurt to buy a few Mass cards, and do some penance, and earn as many indulgences as you can. Don't be too eager, because after you die you still have to pay the price for your own sins in Purgatory, which is a really terrible place where you burn, burn and burn some more. Forget this stuff we've been preaching about grace and faith in Christ being sufficient. What Jesus did was not enough, no, not at all. And take care to not commit any mortal sins, Mr. warden. If you happen to still have a mortal sin on your soul, all bets are off. There, mister warden, doesn't that make you feel much better?"

Thankfully Paul and Silas were not practicing Roman Catholics! Instead they were followers of Christ, known as Christians. So they told the simple truth. To be saved, to ensure yourself a place in Heaven, all you need to do is believe in, or accept Jesus as Lord and savior.

Proof From the Bible

Lest you think I am taking a single passage out of context, I will let the Word of God speak for itself. Here are just a few Scriptures that prove how easy it is to find salvation ­ God's way. Please notice the simplicity of the Gospel of salvation according to God. Compare it with the gospel of salvation by works, sacraments, and obedience to an organization of man offered by Rome.
"When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life." (Matthew 19: 25-29)
"And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned." (Mark 16: 15-16)
"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. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." (John 3: 16-18)
"And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved." (Acts 2: 21)
"And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." (Acts 16: 30-31)
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." (Romans 10:9-10)
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast."(Ephesians 2:8-9)
"Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life." (Titus 3:5-7)

Make Your Choice, or Pay Your Money

Yes, I know I have this well-known euphemism backwards. But in the Roman Catholic Church, that is how it is. With God, salvation is a free gift with no strings attached. That's how much God loves you. With Rome, you pay a very heavy price and still cannot be certain of salvation! Rome goes so far as to curse anyone who really believes the Gospel message of salvation!
"If anyone saith that a man who is born again and justified is bound
of faith to believe that he is assuredly in the number of the saved;
let him be anathema (cursed)! [Council of Trent, CANNON XV].
QUESTION: How can Rome curse that which God promises?

Your Answer?

QUESTION: Can you now see the incredible contradiction between Rome's answer to salvation and God's answer? YES NO
QUESTION: Which do you choose: the salvation offered by God, or that offered by Rome? God Rome

Would You Like to Be Saved ­ and Know it?

Jesus Christ was born, suffered on the cross, died, was buried and resurrected for one reason, and one reason only - to save you from your sins and guarantee your place in Heaven. All He asks is that you admit you are a sinner, acknowledge that Jesus is God incarnate, and ask Him to be your Savior and Lord or your life. Nothing could be simpler.

It matters not which church you belong to. All that matters is having that personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It is yours for the asking. If this is what you really want, just say so to Jesus. To help you do this, I include this small prayer.

Lord Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God, the Messiah. I know that I am a sinner, and that my sin separates me from you, from the Father, and from Heaven. I believe that you died for me. Please, Jesus, come into my heart, my life; be my Savior and Lord. I entrust my life and my eternal destiny to your loving hands. Fill me with your Holy Spirit and help me to live for you all the days of my life.

If you say this simple prayer, and mean it, I can assure you that your sins are forgiven and that your place in Heaven is secured. I can give this assurance on the basis of the simple Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Once you have been born again, it is important that you seek out a place of worship where the Word of God is the one, single, trustworthy guide. Jesus founded His church for you and for me. He had good reasons, and we should not neglect it. A Christ-centered church is a place of fellowship, a place where we can learn more of the Scriptures, a place where we can worship our God in Spirit and in Truth. If you need help choosing a place, please post a message on our Message Board and I will try to help you find a good church.

I Choose Rome Over God

That is your right. In the face of God's clear Word, you prefer the contradictory teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. That takes a lot of courage, and I respect your freedom to believe as you choose to believe. Since I have failed to convince you from Scripture, from logic, from reason, and from Rome's own documentation that the Roman Catholic Church is a false religion, It may be that I have missed something along the way. If you wish, you can post a message on our Message Board and tell me where I failed you. Yes, I really would like to hear your view. And thank you for taking the time to examine the evidence!

Salvation at-a-Glance

All of the information on salvation according to God and according to Rome is shown in two simple illustrations. Click here to see them now.

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End Notes

1. The Question and Answer Catholic Catechism, John A. Hardon, S.J. ©1981 and bearing the Imprimi Potest, Nihil Obstat, and Imprimatur. These three attestations, while meaningless to non-Catholics, signify to the Catholic reader that a document is acceptable for a Catholic to read.

2. ibid, page 225, question 1119.

3. ibid, page 226, Question 1120.

4. ibid, page 226, Question 1122.

5. Dogmatic Cannons and Decrees of the Council of Trent and Vatican Council I ©1912 by the Devin-Adair Company and bearing the Nihil Obstat and the Imprimatur of Rome.

6. ibid.

7. ibid.

8. Catechism of the Catholic Church, ©1994, United States Catholic Conference, Inc., Libra Editrice Vaticana; Page 370, number 1471.

9. Catholicism and Fundamentalism: The Attack on "Romanism" by Bible Christians, By Karl Keating, ©1988 Ingatius Press, San Franscisco, and bearing both the Nihil Obstat and the Imprimatur, official marks of the Roman Catholic church that designate a book as acceptable reading for Roman Catholics, and as accurately reflecting Roman Catholic doctrine.

10. The Question and Answer Catechism Catholic Catechism, Page 133-134, numbers 604, 605, 609, 610.

11. Ibid, Page 133, number 603.

12. Acts 16: 25-31 tells the story of how to be saved. You should really read it!