Can I be both Catholic and be Saved?


#1

Ok, before my question…here’s my background… I was baptized as a baby (Catholic) - never taken to church again. Became a born again Christian about 13 years ago. Since that time I have been totally in love with Jesus, trying to live my life so it pleases Him and have been certain that as His child, I will go to heaven when I die. About 3 yrs. ago I started studying the Catholic Faith & became convinced that this was the True Church that Jesus established. I was happily rec’d into the Church this past Easter. My question, although I don’t (and never did) believe in OSAS, is it wrong for me to assume I’ll go to heaven when I die? I find that Catholics are always sort of “well I hope so…” when it comes to heaven but I’m 100% certain because Jesus died on the cross for my sins, I believe it, and I live my life as a Christian. Not that I’m perfect - but that I ask for forgivness when I sin. So heaven IS in my future, I remain certain. Am I deceiving myself? Can I be both Catholic & Saved??


#2

Carol Marie,

I’m not a Catholic but this issue concerns me as well. As I understand it, you can have “moral certainty” of your relationship with God. The point being that it’s always theoretically possible that we are self-deceived. But as long as we continue to repent of our sins and place our trust in Christ, then yes, we can be confident that we will be saved. Of course, we could conceivably fall away in the future–that’s the part that we really can’t be sure about. But that’s the adventure of Christian living. We just have to keep walking the walk moment by moment.

I don’t think being “saved” is primarily about going to heaven when we die, anyway. That is of course part of it. But salvation is being incorporated into Christ’s Body and living by His life. Our job is not to worry about our salvation but place it in Christ’s hands, and focus on loving our neighbor and glorifying God in everything we do.

Edwin


#3

You cannot be 100% certain as the Council of Trent declared. You can’t predict the future. You never know what can happen. You may commit a mortal sin and die in that state. As St. Paul said, we must work out our salvation in fear and trembling. Jesus paid for those sins, but we must still walk with him hand in hand until the end. If we decide to let go of His hand before then and we die without Him we will not be saved. You can be very confident, but not 100% certain.


#4

Hi,

Many non-catholics seem to believe that salvation is theirs becuae Jesus dies for those sins. My question to them is, Can a person refuse salvation or can they do anything to make themselves unworthy of that salvation? It is my thinking that Jesus died on the cross for us and opened the door of salvation to us but it is our choice to walk through it. Like everything else Jesus gave us free will.

NLevesque


#5

UM HONEY UNLESSYOU HAVE ACCESS TO THE LAMB’S BOOK OF LIFE YOU CANT HAVE ABSOLUTE ASSURANCE OF YOUR SALVATION—PHILLIPIANS 2:12 WORKOUT YOUR SALVATION WITH FEAR AND TREMBLING." ROM 11:22—IS ALSO GOOD–SO THE NASWER TO YOUR QUESTION IS —NO!!!


#6

[quote=marineboy]UM HONEY UNLESSYOU HAVE ACCESS TO THE LAMB’S BOOK OF LIFE YOU CANT HAVE ABSOLUTE ASSURANCE OF YOUR SALVATION—PHILLIPIANS 2:12 WORKOUT YOUR SALVATION WITH FEAR AND TREMBLING." ROM 11:22—IS ALSO GOOD–SO THE NASWER TO YOUR QUESTION IS —NO!!!
[/quote]

Marineboy,
You don’t have to shout and I’m not your honey.

CM


#7

Welcome to the Church!

The Catechism assures us that if we die in God’s grace and friendship we will live forever with Christ. (CCC 1023, 1030) But we can not know for certain that that we will die in God’s grace and friendship. That is why Catholics pray for a happy death. We must endure to the end, as many have already said.

If you are living your faith now, that’s a pretty good indication of how your future will go. We should never despair and give up hope of heaven, but we shouldn’t presume that we will never walk away from God either. We need His continual grace just to stay in a state of grace! So pray for the grace of final perseverence, and I am reasonably confident that He will happily give it to you because He wants us to get to heaven.


#8

I think what you are trying to find out is future knowledge,we always have to be on guard.Say if you know you aren’t in mortal sin now and a truck was going to hit you now be at peace.But you do not know if at a later time you lose your mind and don’t care anymore then you could lose it.Does that make sense?I am say you can of your free will tell God you are not sorry and do not want His forgiveness.:nope:


#9

Carol Marie,

I understand exactly where you are coming from. When God first grabbed ahold of my heart in a Nazarene Church, I among others was asked to give a talk about “How I know I am saved”.

In the talk, I said I had always thought “How arrogant it is for people to say I know I am saved. But I am here to tell you, I know I am saved.”

Now this was not an OSAS kind of thing.

Have you read the tract Assurance of Salvation? from CA? Skim down to Can you Know? about halfway down the page. catholic.com/library/Assurance_of_Salvation.asp

It fits perfectly, for me, of how I “know” I am going to heaven. In the Catholic Church I now say, I am confident, because of the possibility of self deception as the Bible warns. Jesus declared: ‘Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord” shall enter the kingdom of heaven’ (Matt. 7:21)."

So if when you say “I know” you acknowledge the possibility for self-deception, as well as the possibility that you may choose to walk away from God at any time, then yes you can say I know meaning at this point in time.

From CA Assurance of Salvation?
Such an individual was Paul, writing at the end of his life, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day” (2 Tim. 4:7-8). But earlier in life, even Paul did not claim an infallible assurance, either of his present justification or of his remaining in grace in the future. Concerning his present state, he wrote, "I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby justified [Gk., *dedikaiomai

]. It is the Lord who judges me" (1 Cor. 4:4). Concerning his remaining life, Paul was frank in admitting that even he could fall away: “I pummel my body and subdue it, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified” (1 Cor. 9:27). Of course, for a spiritual giant such as Paul, it would be quite unexpected and out of character for him to fall from God’s grace.** Nevertheless, he points out that, however much confidence in his own salvation he may be warranted in feeling, even he cannot be infallibly sure either of his own present state or of his future course. **

However, I think part of the reason the Catholic Church teaches that it is a presumption to say “I know” is for the very fact that it keeps in the forefront of our minds, that I must continue to “walk the walk” lest I should perish.

For these reasons I no longer say I know I am going to heaven even though my confidence is not one bit less that the day I gave the speach of my “knowing I am saved”. **I now say I am confident I am going to heaven. **This wording does not deny the Scripture that there are those who think they are going to heaven but won’t.

From CA Assurance of Salvation
One can be confident of one’s present salvation. This is one of the chief reasons why God gave us the sacraments—to provide visible assurances that he is invisibly providing us with his grace. And one can be confident that one has not thrown away that grace by simply examining one’s life and seeing whether one has committed mortal sin.

God Bless,
Maria


#10

[quote=Contarini]Carol Marie,

I’m not a Catholic but this issue concerns me as well. As I understand it, you can have “moral certainty” of your relationship with God. The point being that it’s always theoretically possible that we are self-deceived. But as long as we continue to repent of our sins and place our trust in Christ, then yes, we can be confident that we will be saved. Of course, we could conceivably fall away in the future–that’s the part that we really can’t be sure about. But that’s the adventure of Christian living. We just have to keep walking the walk moment by moment.

I don’t think being “saved” is primarily about going to heaven when we die, anyway. That is of course part of it. But salvation is being incorporated into Christ’s Body and living by His life. Our job is not to worry about our salvation but place it in Christ’s hands, and focus on loving our neighbor and glorifying God in everything we do.

Edwin
[/quote]

I love your answer. Are you sure you’re not Catholic? Maybe it’s time to think about coming home…:slight_smile:


#11

Maria G.,

Thanks so much for understanding what I was trying to say!

I suppose my confidence comes from knowing what Jesus has done for me on the cross and by my not being able to even imagine ever turning my back on Him or wanting to sin so badly that I’m seperated from Him.

I know this is something I have to continue “working on.” It’s just that I can’t ever imagine not doing just that.

With fear & trembling, (and lots of joy)
CM


#12

sorry I didnt mean any disrespect by caling you “honey”–welcome home------to the one true church


#13

First, I’m not Catholic, but I think I know where you are coming from. There is a tension that exists between the two polar opposites of despair & presumption.
On the one hand it is possible to be arrogant about your own self, to the point that you believe that you cannot possibly sin. At the other end of the spectrum, are those sad (& almost certainly pathological) people who think that everything they say & do must be a sin–probably mortal, or even unforgivable.
The rest of us, Catholic, &Protestant, are someplace in the middle. It is usually possible to know whethter or not you have committed a serious sin. If you have, you obviously need to make it right.(According to your own church’s teachings, not my ramblings, I would add!)
Now, it is possible to be wrong, but I think that since you have asked the question, we can assume that you have a normal, well formed Christian conscience. So you probably are;) not going to run amok & desert all that you believe in…
On the other hand, we all have to have the humility to admit that we, not being perfect, can (and do) sin.But we keep looking at Jesus Christ, & that keeps us honest.
I really think you all ready have the answer to your question. God bless.


#14

[quote=Elzee]I love your answer. Are you sure you’re not Catholic? Maybe it’s time to think about coming home…:slight_smile:
[/quote]

Oh, believe me, I’ve been thinking about it for years. I’m an RCIA dropout, in fact. The recent events have once again turned my thoughts strongly in that direction. I’m rather ashamed of being so superficial, since I think largely my current mood is a result of intensive media exposure (I note that many people are experiencing the same thing). But I think it’s more than that. Ironically in some respects (especially women’s ordination) I’m relatively liberal by Catholic standards and could be expected to be unhappy about Ratzinger’s election. But in fact I’m delighted. In some ways I feel as if he speaks to me more directly even than JPII did. And I think at root what is impressive about this whole thing is the spectacle of the continuity of the Catholic Church. I’ve known no Pope other than JPII, and somehow the sight of a new Pope brings home more vividly the stability and antiquity of the Church.

OK, I need to shut up and go write this on my blog!

Edwin


#15

Maria G.,

Thanks so much for understanding what I was trying to say!

I suppose my confidence comes from knowing what Jesus has done for me on the cross and by my not being able to even imagine ever turning my back on Him or wanting to sin so badly that I’m seperated from Him.

I know this is something I have to continue “working on.” It’s just that I can’t ever imagine not doing just that.

Not a problem;) I think many times there exists a barrier not in beliefs, but in word choice. For example: Faith alone. I know I was taught that I am saved by faith alone. But when you get down to the nitty gritty, it really was the Catholic teaching of faith without works is dead.

I really enjoy the works of Scott Hahn. Even though I have been back to the Catholic Church now for 7 years, I still tend to look at things through Protestant eyes. He really helps me to see the Catholic words and teachings.

With fear & trembling, (and lots of joy)
CM

:amen: I have to say I love that. I always say that too, but it never fully covered how I felt. I’ll have to add the lots of joy part. Thanks!

God Bless,
Maria


#16

Perhaps the best way to look at it is this: At any given moment you can know that you’re saved, but you can’t say at this moment what things will be like in the next. You can only speak for now.

When I step out of a Confessional with a clean conscience, I know that if I died in that instant I’d be saved. I wouldn’t be able to say for certain that I’d never sin again, however. That’s all you really have to understand. It’s just about being humble enough to only speak for what you know, that’s all.

God bless you!


#17

Being a person who attended several churches (various baptist, catholic, methodist, pentacostal, etc) growing up, (sometimes even several churches in a week!) I was exposed to a lot of beliefs. Finally when I got old enough to create my own spiritual problems (19) and was on my own, I fell deeply into secularist ideas, but acknowledged God when convenient. Now, several years later and having my children go through catechism, I found myself more and more devoted to the Catholic Church. I attended the Catholic Church throughout my 20’s and attended no others. I reflect on alot of the “anti-catholic” speeches sometimes and find them useful to this day. I’m now a confirmed Catholic, but still have questions based on some of the protestant claims and remarks of the Catholic Church. Now, instead of just following the claims…I do research. I find it amazing how history has been shadowed by ignorant and unresearched claims. I also find it amazing that the Church has been wrongfully accused of several idealogies, traditions, paganism, etc. Why am I going on and on? Here’s a link:

geocities.com/1christlover/OSAS-.html

**

“Once Saved, Always Saved” IS WRONG

There’s so much scriptural proof that this doctrine is wrong, it’s best to put it in these separate pages.http://www.geocities.com/pictures/icons/lines/blue_thin_line_2.gif

“Once Saved, Always Saved” IS WRONG proof from the Gospels

In the link above is Matthew 24:13,24,25 ; Luke 8:5-8,11-15 ; 12:45,46 ; 14:34,35 ; 15:13,21,24 ; 22:31,32 ; andJohn 15:1,2,6. I get deep into the word with what it means, from some interpretations of Greek words,to further prove the point that one can lose their salvation.**

I hope you find this information helpful.

PS, I do find my attendance in protestant churches helpful in a serious matter. My knowledge of scripture through constant recitals and reference seems to be a bit more honed than the average catholic. I hope that someday this will all change though. For I pray that all my Catholic brothers and sisters take up their bibles, catechism books and all other material and read and understand who and what they are. God bless all of you!


#18

[quote=carol marie]Marineboy,
You don’t have to shout and I’m not your honey.

CM
[/quote]

:rotfl: :dancing:


#19

Let’s put this in the context of two typical ‘born again’ Christian questions.

  1. “Are you saved?”

The Catholic can and should answer that (a) “I have been justified by the grace of faith alone through my baptism; I have entered into his one and unrepeatable death and Resurrection” and also (b) “I am being saved as we speak.”

Justifying Grace has nothing at all to do with our free action or anything like that. See the Catholic/Lutheran joint declaration on justification. With regard to salvation, Catholics have a word that Protestants don’t use because they think it’s “works”: sancitification. Sanctification is Jesus working in us continually to perfect us in his love. “Be perfect as my Father is perfect.” When we are in Sanctification–i.e., when we have no mortal sin and we are in communion with the Church, we are “being saved”. As Catholics in sanctifying grace, we are “being saved” NOW, not just sometime in the past, or in the future; it is Christ alive and at work here and now.

Protestants tend to think of salvation as something that just happened a long time ago, and that’s that–dust off the hands and sin boldly if you please. For Catholics, salvation is a continuous, ongoing thing. We participate in sanctification by being a part of Christ’s body in the Church.

leading to the second question…

  1. “Do you confess Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior?”

A: YES! Yet Jesus Christ does not so much as save “me” as he saves “the Bride”–the Church, which he is conforming to himself ever new, in every age.


#20

[quote=carol marie]Ok, before my question…here’s my background… I was baptized as a baby (Catholic) - never taken to church again. Became a born again Christian about 13 years ago. Since that time I have been totally in love with Jesus, trying to live my life so it pleases Him and have been certain that as His child, I will go to heaven when I die. About 3 yrs. ago I started studying the Catholic Faith & became convinced that this was the True Church that Jesus established. I was happily rec’d into the Church this past Easter. My question, although I don’t (and never did) believe in OSAS, is it wrong for me to assume I’ll go to heaven when I die? I find that Catholics are always sort of “well I hope so…” when it comes to heaven but I’m 100% certain because Jesus died on the cross for my sins, I believe it, and I live my life as a Christian. Not that I’m perfect - but that I ask for forgivness when I sin. So heaven IS in my future, I remain certain. Am I deceiving myself? Can I be both Catholic & Saved??
[/quote]

Hi carol marie,
This is such a difficult question, but the answer is Yes and by faith. Your question and salvation is one of the faith which is expressed in your post.
I love the word “redemption.“
I believe God is almighty. Now if I come from Him, it is not possible for Him to lose me. Surely no one on this list would ever think that God is not able to save someone if He chose to. So ask yourself ,” Do I come from Him”? I seriously started reading the bible some 5 to 6 years ago and I was appalled when I read in Revelation how the elders worshiped Him. How wise is our loving God. Now I worship Him daily, after asking for forgiveness and before prayers. Just think, how great is His love that He who is so almighty would stop and listen to the worship of one who is so uncomprehending. It is more so than you or I stopping to listen to an ant saying how strong we are. I am postive that I would only be worshiping Him if I came from Him, otherwise I wouldnt care.

saved. I am saved almost every day in a manner I recognise. Take Tuesday night. This is a long testimony and I wont give it all unless you ask for it either here or by PM but in a couple of words, I didnt want to eat at a restaurant, my wife did, so I agreed because my life is one of submission to Him in all things and to all people and we went in the car but would you believe that the two restaurants we went to were for some reason closed and then I needed to go to a toilet rather desperately and I hate local "Hole in the ground " toilets so we went home and then out of the blue my wife said she would cook.
The more I walk out side in the public the more He keeps saving me as I live a life of submission to His will.
My valleys are filled in and my mountains have been knocked down. Saved, moment by moment
Think about poor Job, but he kept his faith.
If this happened to me, I would go bonkers. I become scared if I havent heard from Him in a couple of days.
What joy there is in Holy fear and reverence. I view this as the yeast in my love.
I still sin of course but there is always a lesson attached, and sometimes I am led into what seems an error but I just keep speaking the truth as I see it and wow the light comes through. I have spoken wrong words and have had to apologise, but in my apology, I can see His working to keep my from being big headed. He is so beautiful.
Just trust in His strength seeking His will.
Give glory to Him
walk in love
edwinG


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