What is the point of getting baptism if some people can get to heaven without it?
Our Lord told us to go out and baptize. By baptism, we are freed from original sin. If we reject baptism, then we reject salvation.
The Lord said few will get to Heaven and I am betting even fewer will get to Heaven via invincible ignorance. Even if someone gets to Heaven via invincible ignorance they will have never received sanctifying grace here on Earth. Jesus instructed us to be Baptized to enter the kingdom of Heaven there is no reason why we should reject it. Besides no one can ever know who is and is not invincibly ignorant and there is a fine line between being unwilling to believe or being unable, why risk it? You receive such an outpouring of grace and love through the sacraments and church there would be no reason not to receive them. In my opinion if someone knows what invincible ignorance is, yet they also know what the church says, you must receive the sacraments, then you probably are not invincibly ignorant.
But the question is though, why does the church teach that certain people who did not get baptised still have some hope for salvation. For example, in the cathecism it talks in nostre aetate number 3 about how “the mohammedans worship and adore the same god”. And obviously, muslims are not baptised in the holy trinity formula, and yet they have a chance of salvation eventhough they are not freed from original sin? So why is baptism necessary for some but not for others? I don’t get it… Not questioning the church’s validity, i’m just asking to clear up the confusion.
Ok that sort of partly answers the question :).
All those unaware of the Catholic Church are not damned. But, if they recognize that the Church is the One, True Church, and they reject it, then salvation cannot be guaranteed. You cannot gain salvation through Islam. You can only gain salvation through Catholicism. However, those not aware of this are not damned, because it would not be fair if those unaware of the Church go to hell.
If you choose not to be baptized, then salvation cannot be guaranteed.
[quote=MindNight]For example, in the cathecism it talks in nostre aetate number 3 about how “the mohammedans worship and adore the same god”.
In Nostre Aetate it is not guaranteeing salvation to the Muslims it is simply acknowledging that we have similarities. We always have taught there is no salvation outside the Church and we still do but we also try to foster peace and good relations with other religions. Is it possible for a Muslim to get to Heaven? Yes, through invincible ignorance but not from their own faith if that makes sense. God has mercy on invincibly ignorant people because they did not know better. Those who out and out reject the Church even after having knowledge of it being the true Church are no longer ignorant. The Church and it’s sacraments are necessary for those that know of the Church.
Yes makes way more sense now :). So to summarise, baptism is 100% necessary for those who are not invincibly ignorant and those that know the truth? (By the way, I was baptised as an infant, so I am only officially a roman catholic, though I am a fallen away catholic.)
Baptism is the first step in the conversion process of EVERY Christian.
It only ends at the moment of our death when we face the justice of GOD.
There we will be judged and we will not be able to hide anything.
St. Paul admonishes us to WORK on OUR SALVATION with fear and trembling.
Keep the Commandments (No sins)
And if we sin repent and go to confession and strive to sin no more.
You would not be on a Catholic Forum if you were totally fallen away and not interested, may the Lord give you the Grace to bring you back In the fold, maybe reading the Church Fathers, and stories of Converts on why they became Catholic might give you food for thought. Hope to see you in the pew praying with me.
There seems to be a lot of confusion on what it means to be baptized and how it effects our salvation. I am hearing the phrase invincible ignorance. I understand what you are saying by it , however I don’t believe it works that way. Please let me share some things and hopefully it will bring you some certainty on the subject.
New International Version (NIV)
5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit[a] gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You** must be born again.’
It is important to remember that those are the words of Jesus.
When we are born into this world we are born from our mothers flesh. When we come to the saving knowledge of Jesus and we have a change in our hearts then we are prepared to fully except Jesus and be baptized. Since Jesus is the spirit we are born again into him.
New International Version (NIV)
38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
Repent: This means to turn away from the things you are doing and follow Jesus. This is when the change of heart happens. We must realize that it does not happen all at once but when the spirit of God is dwelling in you it makes it really hard (nearly impossible) to live the way you once lived. This is when we are growing in Christ. This promise is for all generations however it is not to say that we can except Christ for one another. Yes the promise is for our children, this is why we need to teach them the ways of our Lord so that in due time they to will be born of the spirit.
New International Version (NIV)
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever[a] you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Romans 6:14 For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under law but under grace.
This is why we must be baptized, but remember that we must first repent. We must make a conscious decision so that we understand what we are doing. Baptism itself does not save you. It is through the act of baptism that we die to the flesh with Christ and are resurrected in the spirit with Christ. It helps to understand this if you are familiar with immersion baptism.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
If any of these are qualities that we posses we should be concerned.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
If these are the qualities that are controlling our lives than I’ed say we are on the right path.
Remember it is a constant growth in our lives that were we are improving in these qualities.
This is how we grow into mature Christians. There is nothing apart from the Holy spirit that will earn our way into Heaven.
May the peace of God the father be with you!!**
Though, I never even said the part marked in bold. I am very much interested in catholicism… I don’t know where you got the idea from that I am not interested… I can agree with the rest of your post though :).
It’s like asking, what is the point of using an Ocean Liner when I can just swim across the Atlantic. I get to the other side in either case?
With Baptism comes a myriad of graces and the possibility of additional sacraments (marriage, confession, etc).
Without baptism, you must try to live with your spouse without the graces God gives to assist you.
Without baptism, you sins are forgiven through with perfect contrition (never easy to achieve).
Good efternoon MindNight! “Fallen away” is a term which is quite easy to drop! Mother Church is there to welcome you home, all you need to do is come home!
Praying for you in peace,
Would you be so kind as to point out my errors.
Following tradition of men is your error. This is the deal; the Tradition in the Catholic Church has its origin from the beginning; from Jesus and His Apostles. It is ridiculous to think that after almost 1500 years mere men can “figure it out” and change from what Jesus Himself built and promised to send the Holy Spirit to protect. Furthermore, as has been pointed out to you here and in other threads even the fathers of the reformation did not accept some of the current day fundamental views like the ones you listed above.
So your error is choosing to follow what is not built and guided by God, man made traditions. The only way for you to see truth is to look into the truth of what the Church believes and teaches with an open mind and contrite heart; then and only then will you begin to see truth. Until then you will continue to point out how us silly little katlicks have it all wrong and no progress will be made, damage yes but not progress.
Now, if you care to begin your journey, please send me a PM and we can begin. If not, may God bless you and your family.
It is not as simple as your question makes it sound. I presume you’re talking about invincible ignorance. Well, you don’t have that so baptism is a must. You don’t make it clear: is this a general question or are you thinking of being baptized?
Baptism is the gateway to the other sacraments. This means you can’t access any of the other sacraments without being baptized. You couldn’t be confirmed. You couldn’t receive the Eucharist. You couldn’t receive absolution in confession. You could get married but it wouldn’t be a sacramental marriage. You couldn’t receiving any anointing. I would imagine that one asking about the need for baptism wouldn’t be consider holy orders.
You need baptism in order to become a Christian. Baptism cleanses you from original sin. Baptism makes you a member of the Church. It provides access to the other sacraments. It won’t ensure you a place in heaven but it’s the first step on the journey.
The bolded is most important.
They have A CHANCE of being saved. They MAY be saved.
If you follow Christ’s Church, and stick to His sacraments, hold to the Commandments, perform the works God has laid out for you, then Christ PROMISED that you would be saved.
These scenarios have a huge difference of the likelihood of salvation.
If you read my reply to Celtic Maiden, I clearly said that I was baptised (as an infant in a roman catholic church). So yeah, my question is a general one just to clear up theological confusions, that’s all.