08 May, 2011

Continuing discussion with "John the Baptist" about the celibate priesthood, fasting and prayer

(John the Baptist)1Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared, 3who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. 4For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, 5for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.
6If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed. 7Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; 8for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. 9The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance. 10For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.

"who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created"
The catholic church forbids the priest from marriage.
The catholic church forbids eating meat on fridays.

(Cristoiglesia) First of all the Church does not forbid marriage but instead encourages marriage. Priests take a vow of chastity by their own choice. There are 23 Rites in the Catholic Church and of these 23 Rites only one chooses from among the candidates who have chosen to remain chaste. Both St. Paul and Jesus recommended chastity for those in ministry so your argument is with them and not with the discipline among priests being obedient to what Jesus and St. Paul recommended.

Fasting is a form of prayer to God in which we sacrifice for Him in order to focus on Him instead of worldly desires. Fasting is a practice of the Church from the beginning of the Church and it is a practice which was started by the apostles and continues today. So no food is forbidden it is just that once a week the faithful were asked to focus on the Lord instead of one’s earthly desires. Clearly this is not in opposition to biblical teaching which means that the food laws of the Old Testament are no longer necessary for Christians. Please refer to the first Council of Jerusalem where this was discussed and decided. It opened the way for the Gentiles to become Christians.

(John the Baptist) "irreverent, silly myths"
The doctrines of mary the catholic church has invented.

(Cristoiglesia) The teaching about the blessed mother of God is not irreverent, silly myths but is instead the truth. You should ask yourself why you and your sect hate the blessed mother of God so much and why you are not a part of those who call her blessed as the Bible states the faithful in Christ will do. Do you really believe that Jesus approves of you and others attempting to marginalize his mother who always points to her Son as the source of our salvation and hope?

(John the Baptist) This is what is happening to the catholic church today.

(Cristoiglesia) If you mean teaching the truth then you are correct but you are suggesting error without any reasonable explanation and only making empty accusations.

(John the Baptist) "But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
7"And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words.

"meaningless repetition"
The Rosary is a meaningless repetition of a prayer to mary.

(Cristoiglesia) Personally I rarely pray the Rosary but instead I pray the Breviary. It is obvious that you do not know anything about the Rosary prayer. The Bible forbids vain repetition in prayer. The operative word is “vain”. The Rosary prayer is as far from a vain repetition as one can get when praying. The Rosary prayer focuses on God, especially his passion for us, and in the Rosary prayer we evoke the blessed mother of God as our prayer partner to her Son. It is far from meaningless, vain or repetitious in the sense of the Scripture you recite out of context and understand by eisegesis.

(John the Baptist)You really should listen to people like Dr. Stanley and Dr. McGee for they do have a lot of knowledge about God and His Book the Bible. They have millions and millions of Christians learning from them.

How many people are listening to you? Very few if any.

(Cristoiglesia) I did not enter into ministry for fame and fortune but to spread God’s Word. The people you cite are false teachers who satisfy the itching ears of those who cannot endure sound doctrine. If one learns false teaching does that make on more faithful to Christ or less faithful. I would suggest the latter. That is the reason that the Bible says we are not to follow such teachers. The Bible further states that such misplaced devotion may be the cause of the destruction of the soul. The Bible warns such people that at judgment that our lord will state, “depart from me, I never knew you.” There are over a billion Catholics who listen to and follow the teaching of the Church to the best of their ability.

(John the Baptist) The catholic church and you are Irrelevant today, you cannot keep the people from following Jesus like the catholic church has done for hundreds of years. Hopefully on day you will wake up to the truth in the Word of God the Bible.

(Cristoiglesia) By irrelevant you are saying that the teaching of the disciples and Jesus are not relevant in these modern times and that modernist teachers are more in line with what people want to hear than Christ’s own Church. Certainly you seem to be an example of one enticed by their worldly relevance. Such relevance does not please God who spoke of abstaining from the worldly and embracing his kingdom instead. Do you really believe that those teachers that are in protest of Christ’s own Church and his teaching through his Church are provoking people to come to Jesus by their heretical false and worldly teaching. Do you not believe the Bible when it says that his Church is the “pillar and foundation of the truth” and not these heretics? Do you think that maybe people who follow these false teachers are in danger just like Jesus said?

A reasonable person not persuaded by the doctrines and churches of men would reject these false teachers and be faithful to the authority that Jesus placed on earth for his faithful which is his Church. The Church has endured for 2000 years as Christ promised and will endure until the Parousia just as he promised. You may remain outside of the Ark of His Church that he provided for all humanity from a sinful and seductive world and suffer the fate that he warns all men which is hearing his words, “depart from me, I never knew you”. Jesus calls all men to be faithful to his Church. He is calling you home to his Church. Give up your worldly pride and do his will. Jesus prayed at the mount of olives at the Garden of Gethsemane before his arrest and subsequent sacrifice to his Father that we all be one as he and the Father are one.” That unity of his will is in his Church. God bless!

In Christ
Fr. Joseph

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