The Betrayal of the Reformation Part 1

Discussion in 'Christian Forum' started by TPM, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. TPM

    TPM Elite Refuge Member

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    Shameful Ironies!
    by Dave Hunt

    Martin Luther is remembered and widely honored today in much of the
    world-certainly throughout the West. The recent movie about his life was a
    Hollywood success that attracted large secular audiences in spite of its
    religious content. Luther stood up courageously against the false doctrines
    of the Roman Catholic Church despite Pope Leo X's determination to arrest
    and burn him alive at the stake. He had been disillusioned while visiting
    the Vatican and seeing the hypocrisy and open immorality among the clergy
    from priest to pope. The final straw was Rome's selling of indulgences for
    supposedly releasing one's dead relatives from purgatory to enter heaven.
    The infamous sales pitch that raised millions of dollars promised, "As soon
    as a coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs." The proceeds
    from this shameless scam paid for repairing and enlarging St. Peter's
    Basilica. That awesome structure stands today as a monument to the false
    gospel that Church still regularly preaches!

    Disillusioned and furious, Luther wrote his Disputation on the Power and
    Efficacy of Indulgences (known as "The Ninety-five Theses") and nailed it to
    the door of the Wittenberg Castle Church. Copies were widely distributed in
    several European languages, shaking Europe, inciting heated
    debate,__sparking the Reformation and the exodus of millions from the Roman
    Catholic Church-and hopefully bringing salvation to many of them.

    Although Luther retained some of his Catholicism, his bold declaration
    before the Imperial Diet at Worms (in stark contrast to the attitude of so
    many Christians today) has inspired millions: "I am bound by the
    Scriptures...and my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and
    will not retract anything...here I stand; may God help me." That he really
    meant what he said is proved by the fact that it should have cost him his
    life had not some powerful German princes taken up his cause and protected
    him in protest against Rome-an event from which we get the designation
    "Protestant."

    Desperate to maintain the Church's totalitarian authority, Catholic bishops
    and cardinals launched a counter-Reformation defining Church doctrines and
    demanding obedience thereto at the Council of Trent (1545-1563). Its Canons
    and Decrees (see Resources) denounced the sole authority of Scripture
    affirmed by Luther, denied salvation by faith in Christ without Church
    sacraments and good works, and basically rejected everything the Reformers
    asked the Church to accept in submission to God's Word. Trent pronounced
    more than 100 anathemas (excommunication/damnation) against all who accepted
    any Reformation teaching. It was costly to stand for the truth of God's Word
    in those days, and many thousands would not compromise their convictions in
    spite of torture and death.
    We are in great need of a revival of such unwavering conviction today. It
    will not come, however, without an awakening of an individual hunger and
    thirst after righteousness (Mt 5:6) and deep passion for our Lord and for
    His Word. Sadly, the truth of God is not only neglected and compromised
    today but is actually undermined by many whom millions of Christians look up
    to as evangelical leaders. Tragically, multitudes are being prepared to
    follow the great delusion that will befall those who "received not the love
    of the truth, that they might be saved" (2 Thes 2:8-12).

    Is the fifteenth-century Reformation and Rome's opposition to it at that
    time merely interesting history with little relationship to the church and
    world today? Hardly! The battle continues and has reached a far deadlier
    phase. A growing delusion has deceived multitudes into embracing ecumenical
    compromise while imagining that they are still on the Lord's side.

    In 1962, at the opening of Vatican II in Rome, Pope John XXIII affirmed, "I
    do accept entirely all that has been decided and declared at the Council of
    Trent." Vatican II itself "proposes again the decrees of the Council of
    Trent." On 12/31/95, honoring the 450th anniversary of the opening of Trent,
    Pope John Paul II declared, "Its conclusions maintain all their value."

    Regardless of what a Catholic friend, a liberal priest, or a professor at a
    Catholic university may say, Trent remains the official teaching of Rome and
    has been reconfirmed many times since by the highest Church authority. Here
    are only a few of Trent's anathemas, all of which were renewed by Vatican
    II, The Code of Canon Law, and the current Catechism of the Catholic Church,
    and which remain today as the official teaching of Roman Catholicism,
    sustaining the inflexible dogmas of that "infallible" Church, regardless of
    statements by anyone to the
    contrary:

    ? If anyone denies that by...baptism, the guilt of original sin is
    remitted [or] denies that...[the] justice, sanctification and
    redemption...of Jesus Christ is applied both to adults and to infants by the
    sacrament of baptism...let him be anathema.... (Rome's emphasis)

    ? If anyone says that the sacraments of the New Law [i.e., the seven
    sacraments of the Roman Catholic Church] are not necessary for
    salvation...and that without them...men obtain from God through faith alone
    the grace of justification...let him be anathema....

    ? If anyone says that baptism is...not necessary for salvation, let him
    be anathema....

    ? If anyone says that after the reception of the grace of justification
    the guilt is so remitted and the debt of eternal punishment so blotted
    out...that no debt of temporal punishment remains to be discharged either in
    this world or in purgatory before the gates of heaven can be opened, let him
    be anathema....

    ? If anyone says that the sacrifice of the mass...wherein that
    life-giving victim by which we are reconciled to the Father is daily
    immolated on the altar by priests...is a mere commemoration of the sacrifice
    consummated on the cross but not a propitiatory one...offered for the living
    and the dead, for sins, punishments, satisfactions, and other necessities,
    let him be anathema.

    No bolder nor clearer rejection of the Bible and the gospel of Jesus Christ
    could be declared. This brief sample presents the actual teaching of Roman
    Catholicism as it is taught to and practiced by hundreds of millions of
    Catholics today. There is no disputing the fact that this is a false gospel,
    which, sadly, holds Roman Catholics in bondage on their way to the
    flames-not of a "purgatory" invented by popes, but to the eternal Lake of
    Fire. How can those who profess to admire Luther and the Reformation defend
    Catholicism?

    Given these indisputable facts, no evangelical could call Roman Catholics
    born-again Christians.The shameful irony is that so many evangelical leaders
    and their followers, while claiming to honor the Reformation and its gospel
    of salvation by faith alone in Jesus Christ, at the same time close their
    eyes to the truth and act as though the Reformation never occurred and as if
    Catholics believe the biblical gospel. Have we forgotten that those who do
    not believe the gospel are eternally lost? Will their endless doom be on our
    hands?

    Shameful ironies abound. Although the Roman Catholic Church no longer burns
    opponents at the stake (a practice now repugnant even to the secular world),
    it still maintains every false teaching and practice opposed by Luther and
    his fellow Reformers, thereby deceiving countless millions. It still teaches
    salvation through baptism, good works, and the other sacraments mediated by
    Mary as the "doorway to Christ"; it still offers indulgences at a price for
    release from purgatory to heaven; and it still rejects the final authority
    of Scripture! All of the anathemas pronounced by Trent against Protestant
    beliefs remain in full force and effect. Yet many of Luther's modern
    followers now embrace Roman Catholicism as the true gospel!

    tbc......
     

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