Calling All Protestants

These questions are addressed mainly to Protestants, but all replies are welcome.

  1. When do you say that the Catholic Church ceased to be the true Church of Christ?

  2. What evidence do you have that this date (year or century) marks the start of the Catholic Church and the early corruption of true Christianity?

  3. What evidence do you offer to justify God letting true Christianity fail, and what evidence do you offer that makes modern Protestantism in general a preferable choice to Catholicism?

Very interesting, I am anxious to see the responses. God Bless, Memaw


… interesting question.


At this point, I am anxious to see just one response from a Protestant! :wink:

…and a hush fell over the crowd…:eek:

I wouldn’t count on an answer based upon any history prior to 1517.

First, I’m Roman Catholic and back in 1964 I corrected my doctor of philosophy of education instructor that Catholicism not Protestantism required that “Faith” in God be justified by “Good Works”;
Whereas he had tried to credit Protestantism with the good works justification.

Martin Luther started the Protestant Reformation back in 1517 supported by some German Princes like Frederick III and Phillip by whom paying “indulgences” to the Roman Catholic Church was no longer fashionable to them.
Luther’s motives were everything from his not believing sainthood was possible to falling in love with a sister of the Church and marrying her.

His biggest argument against the Catholic Church was that he believed and:

He began to teach that salvation or redemption is a gift of God’s grace, attainable only through faith in Jesus as the Messiah.


In any event Protestantism took root in various parts of Europe for various reasons from not wanting to support the Church by buying indulgences to not wanting to fight the Ottomans by some of the Black sea countries, but especially because of the treachery of France supporting the German princes in the Thirty Years War against Rome.

Finally we have good old King Henry the VIII with more wives than a king of beasts …
no wonder they called themselves lion kings …
Oops that was Richard a good Catholic I think. :rolleyes:


I used to have a vague belief that it was the middle ages, when superstition and corruption were rife, and I offered the crusades as proof. And believe that Christianity never fell, there were always pockets of true Christianity, it was just the hierarchy that was completely corrupted.

Obviously I didn’t know what I was talking about.:o

I’ll play since I used to be one. All the years I was a protester I never thought about it in these terms you have laid out. I veiwed Catholics as superstitious nut jobs. Their kids swore like sailors. They were stuck up because they would not let non-Catholics take communion. They were strict parents (my mother let us do whatever we wanted). They had big families. They were "religious (they HAD to go to mass). They were not allowed to have fun. They had to wear uniforms. Nuns were mean.

Hey, Catholics were a messed up bunch. What were we protesting? No idea ( most of them have no idea). Oh, almost forgot, them Catholics don’t read their bibles.

The traditional view of Protestants is not just that the hierarchy became corrupt, but that many of the teachings of the Catholic Church were downright false. This is what I’d like to know. Which teachings? And when did those false teachings first begin? That is to say, in what century and for what reasons did the Catholic Church, according to Protestants, cease to be the Church of Christ? If Protestants cannot present evidence for this claim, why are they Protestants rather than Catholics?

Oh golly, well I suppose if we’re talking specific teachings, its going to be ‘working for your salvation’ and the usual stuff about Mary. I can’t speak to the ‘traditional view’ of protestants, only what I believed and was taught. The hierarchy is part of the teachings as far as I’m concerned (still believe that now, even though I’m no longer anti-Catholic).

You are making some broad assumptions that all so called Protestants believe all three of your points here. The first one is a rather poor assumption and implies that “protestants” don’t consider Catholics as fellow Christians. There is only a small group, mostly found in fundamentalist circles that think that but most Protestants which is a very wide river see Catholics as fellow Christians. The second one again, is based on bad assumptions and different Protestant groups believe different things either ranging from 312 AD when Christianity became legal by Constantine to a more gradual corruptions and some don’t at all. Your third point is a rather broad accusation again. If Catholics want to reach out to other Christians no matter what they call themselves, we need to stop the accusatory generalizations that keep cropping up on CAF. They demonstrate ignorance and prejudice against other Christians, Protestants and Orthodox and asking defensive questions doesn’t win anyone, they just draw battle lines with people. Do you think someone is going to become a Catholic reading these questions? I don’t think so.

Charlemagne, You are making broad assumptions about Protestants and the issues you are asking about is as wide as the ocean and can only be answered fairly by being specific with either the so called doctrine of the Church that might be considered “false” by a specific group. The biggest Protestant group that would teach the Catholic Church teaching is “false” are usually found in fundamentalists circles. Likewise, most Protestants that go to their respective Churches are not hearing sermon after sermon on Sunday things against or about the Catholic church. Most Protestant groups are split off of each other and often times are too busy poking at each other than spending time on the Catholic church. I think what Catholics like yourself fail to look at is either books that are anti-Catholic like Lorraine Bottner or ministries dedicated to anti-Catholic stuff. It is in those areas where often times people learn or pick up false things about the Catholic Church. Karl Keating’s book “Fundamentalists and Roman Catholicism” is an answer to Bottner book and I would suggest you read that to find answers to your questions.

I think you miss the point.

All Protestants have to affirm all three points in order to remain Protestant and in their tradition. Whether they think about it often or not. These are three important questions they should examine in order to actively remain outside the Catholic Church.

Protestants don’t consider Catholicism because they are not deep in history (in general). This question makes them dive deep into history.

"“Every year I tell my Reformation history class that Roman Catholicism is, at least in the West, the default position. Rome has a better claim to historical continuity and institutional unity than any Protestant denomination, let alone the strange hybrid that is evangelicalism; in the light of these facts, therefore, we need good, solid reasons for not being Catholic; not being a Catholic should, in others words, be a positive act of will and commitment, something we need to get out of bed determined to do each and every day.”

-Carl Trueman, professor at Westminster Theological Seminary

I don’t think the questions are put in a way that is going to make anyone rethink or re-examine why they are outside the Church. They are defensive in nature and draw battle lines. They are not going to prompt someone to re-examine history. That is only one avenue of joining, there are others.

No sir. I’m not interested in yours or Keating’s canned answers to my questions.

I’m interested in why and when Protestants believe the Catholic Church ceased to be the Church of Christ. I’m interested in hearing from Protestants themselves more so than I am interested in hearing from you or Keating. This is a forum for dialogue, not patty-cake. You seem to have a totally belligerent attitude that doesn’t fit my agenda, so I’m going to ignore your future posts.

On the other hand, I welcome any Proterstant who wishes to answer any of those three questions I posed. I think it’s fair to ask a Protestant to clarify why he is a Protestant and why he thinks Catholicism is not a true religion, even when he might think some of Catholicism is true but he believes it is not worthy of his choosing to be a Catholic.

After all, this is an apologetics forum. O.K.? :shrug:

Let’s love each other rather than hammer each other for asking difficult or provocative questions.

Aren’t you gonna share??? God Bless, Memaw

I was hoping a Protestant would jump in.

When I was fully Protestant I just didn’t think about it. Never heard anything about church history at church other than an acknowledgement of reformation day.

I even argued AGAINST the great Apostasy a Mormon missionary told us about. I told him the church never fell away and there was no evidence for a great apostasy. Obviously I had never read the ECF.

Once I did…I became Catholic…I had too. The decision was made without understanding all the doctrines of Catholicism. It had to be. I saw I was in a tradition with loose roots to the reformation and almost no roots to the early church.

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