The Mental Health Solution . com
"The entrance of thy words giveth light (Psalm 119:130)."

The Catholic Church.

I understand the affection many Christians feel toward the Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church is one of the oldest Christian churches, and with its stained glass windows and traditional architecture, there is a sense of history and tradition that you don't find anywhere else.

Unfortunately, there are some concerns.

First, the Catholic Bible. To its credit, the Catholic Bible is an accurate translation of Scripture—unlike, for example, the Bible used by Jehovah's Witnesses. However, the Catholic Bible also includes a group of books, collectively known as the Apocrypha, whose canonicity is disputed by most other churches. That is, these books are really not Scripture.

Second, the sexual abuse scandal. Sexual abuse does occur in Protestant churches—but it is much less common. The Bible includes specific instructions to minimize sexual transgressions. Consider these Scriptures: ". . . to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband (1 Corinthians 7:2 KJV)." "An overseer (pastor/priest), then, must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife. . . (1 Timothy 3:2 NASB)."

"The (Holy) Spirit clearly says that in later times (i.e. Today) some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth (1 Timothy 4:1-3 NIV)."

It is a farce to believe that the abuse of children in the Catholic Church is unrelated to mandatory celibacy. The sexual abuse of these children is the direct result of the Catholic Church listening to demons and ignoring the Word of God.

Third, the Catholic Church's doctrine of salvation is highly legalistic, changing and involves mortal and venial sins, as defined by the Church. The Catholic Church also teaches that there is a purgatory. None of this is in the Bible.

The Bible says: "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23 NASB)." Also: "I (Jesus) tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life (John 5:24 NIV)." Salvation is the result of receiving Jesus as your Savior—period.

Fourth, the Catholic church teaches that the Pope is infallible, that is, he speaks for God and without error. There is nothing in the Bible to support this. Even Jesus' disciples fell short at times—and this is in the Bible.

Fifth, the Catholic Church teaches that prayers can be made to Mary, the mother of Jesus. Again, this is not in the Bible.

What the Bible does say is that no Christian is allowed to either add to or subtract from the Word of God (Deuteronomy 4:2, Proverbs 30:5-6, Revelation 22:18-19). The Catholic Church does both.

The Catholic Church's doctrines are a combination of truth and error so intertwined that Catholics seem unable to tell one from the other. Satan has seriously compromised the Catholic Church.

One of the most famous Catholics in recent years, Mother Teresa, wrote in her memoirs that she doubted that there really is a God. Such is the result of following Catholic dogma.

Christians need to leave the Catholic Church, no matter how painful that step is. This is particularly true of those with mental health issues. There are many good churches that will welcome them.

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Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com.

The "NIV" and "New International Version" are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

Scripture quotations marked "NKJV™" are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission. (www.Lockman.org).

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.