How Can You Be Sure Catholicism Is The Right Faith


#1

I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.

We would only be angering God and end up in hell in the end… So what makes you so sure this is the true faith?
I know i’m a little paranoid but the word hell des nothing but make me sick to my stomach, and if you mention eternity and hell in the same sentence you’d better get me a bucket!


#2

[quote=Steven87]I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.

We would only be angering God and end up in hell in the end… So what makes you so sure this is the true faith?
I know i’m a little paranoid but the word hell des nothing but make me sick to my stomach, and if you mention eternity and hell in the same sentence you’d better get me a bucket!
[/quote]

Oh, the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist keeps me from leaving. There’s no going around, over or under John 6. Only the Catholic Church teaches this, I think, so that is why I remain in Her.


#3

[quote=Steven87]I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.

[/quote]

  1. God doesn’t lie.
  2. God gave us One Church
  3. There’s only one Church that can trace it’s origen to Peter (Catholic).
  4. The Church’s Doctrine is unchanged after 2000 years.
  5. Satan is always attacking the Catholic Church, but seemingly never the other churches. (The gates of Hell will not prevail against it.)
  6. History proves it. Look at the Church Fathers’ writings.

#4

[quote=Steven87]I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.
[/quote]

The truth is, no one ever knows for sure. It’s just a feeling you have inside yourself. That’s where faith comes in; faith is a belief in something that cannot be proved. Proofs exist for humans to understand things clearly. But God cannot be fully defined in human terms; he is above human comprehension. Thus, faith is the only thing we can go with.


#5

[quote=Steven87]I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.
[/quote]

Keep asking for it!!!

-Peace in Christ-

DustinsDad


#6

[quote=Fidei Defensor]The truth is, no one ever knows for sure. It’s just a feeling you have inside yourself. That’s where faith comes in; faith is a belief in something that cannot be proved. Proofs exist for humans to understand things clearly. But God cannot be fully defined in human terms; he is above human comprehension. Thus, faith is the only thing we can go with.
[/quote]

True, but Reason can lead us to the possibility and lieklihood of God. Faith must bridge the gap. We must live the Faith. And look at the alternative to Faith of atheism, agnosticism, occult or a bunch of squabbling denominations, some will outright kill you physically (occult) and others deaden your soul to the fullness of Truth.

  1. Satan is always attacking the Catholic Church, but seemingly never the other churches. (The gates of Hell will not prevail against it.)- This is not true, Satan attacks all churches to the extent that they do good to turn the individuals totally to evil. Take the Holocaust with the Jewish people.

Thanks and God Bless.


#7

I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.


#8

[quote=ephphatha]I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.
[/quote]

As a former protestant (messianic believer) I made the connection very easily between the Passover meal, John 6 and the last supper. After I made these connections the Eucharist as the fulfillment of the Passover made complete sense. I think that is why the church has recieved so many gifted Jewish converts over the years because they recognize these things much easier than gentiles do. Anyway, fuel for the discussion.


#9

[quote=ephphatha]I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.
[/quote]

Hmmm, may I ask which “early Church fathers” you are referring to??? And yes, the Eucharist is the Summit of the Sacraments and avenue of Grace to the propoerly disposed (i.e. not in a state of mortal sin). I’m am not so sure how many Protestants it keeps out (I say this because 3/4 of my ancestry and extended family are Protestant and as are alot of my high school and college friends, and the Eucharist never was the cause. But, it may be for those you are around).Thanks and God Bless.


#10

[quote=slinky1882]Hmmm, may I ask which “early Church fathers” you are referring to???
[/quote]

I don’t remember. That’s why I want to do the research again. I know it was from the Ante-Nicene fathers, because I was searching an on-line collection of those writings. I don’t remember how I found the reference from Cajetan.

I’m am not so sure how many Protestants it keeps out

I can understand that. I’m not sure how many Catholics it keeps in. I was listening to an on-line lecture by a Catholic a long time ago, and I remember him saying something like 70% of Catholics don’t know about transubstantiation. But mostly, I’m talking about informed protestants and Catholics. Among them, the real presence in the Eucharist seems to be pivotal.


#11

[quote=Max Kolbe]As a former protestant (messianic believer) I made the connection very easily between the Passover meal, John 6 and the last supper. After I made these connections the Eucharist as the fulfillment of the Passover made complete sense. I think that is why the church has recieved so many gifted Jewish converts over the years because they recognize these things much easier than gentiles do. Anyway, fuel for the discussion.
[/quote]

Several years ago, I read Raymond E. Brown’s two volumes on John in the Anchor Bible Commentary series. I remember him saying that there was nothing in John 6 that would’ve led those listening to believe there would be a passover meal in which Jesus identified the bread with his flesh and the wine with his blood. With the advantage of hind sight, it’s easy to perceive references to the last supper in John 6, but without already knowing about the last supper, do you think John 6 would’ve led you to believe in anything like the real presence in the Eurcharist?


#12

[quote=ephphatha]I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.
[/quote]

The reasons belief in the Real Presence keeps some Protestants out of the Catholic Church are many, but generally speaking they are: They don’t understand what is truly meant by transubstantiation. They cannot accept it if they do know. Or, they will not accept it even if they know. But, that holds true for any belief held by any faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I don’t think this is a fair assessment of Catholic understanding nor of the Fathers. I say this because perhaps you are thinking that Catholics, including the ECFs, used the Bible as a proof-text for the beliefs of the Church. We don’t and they didn’t. We see the Bible as a witness to what was already established by the Church. Remember, the Church existed before the NT. That is key to understanding how the Church regards the Bible–as a part of its Sacred Tradition, not as a separate entity or as something that dictates doctrine or dogma.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.

You’ve lost me here. Why ever should anyone be a Calvinist based on John 6? Maybe that’s topic for another thread, though. But, I am not making the connection within the context of such a cryptic comment.


#13

[quote=Della]I don’t think this is a fair assessment of Catholic understanding nor of the Fathers. I say this because perhaps you are thinking that Catholics, including the ECFs, used the Bible as a proof-text for the beliefs of the Church.
[/quote]

The reason I said what I did is because I read some of the commentaries the ECF’s made about the bread of life discourse, and from those comments, it was evident to me that they did not think it had anything to do with the Eucharist.

You’ve lost me here. Why ever should anyone be a Calvinist based on John 6? Maybe that’s topic for another thread, though.

I said a little about this on the What would it take to convince them? thread. But you’re right that a full discussion of it would probably require a thread of its own.

Sam


#14

After trying many forms of spirituality, Christian and non-Christian, I find the Catholic Chruch to be my spiritual home. It’s hard for me to put into words, but it just feels right, even when I struggle with some of the Church’s teachings. When I do struggle with the Church’s teachings or my faith in general, I need to find out and correct my own drifting away from the Lord (with his help and grace of course).


#15

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della
I don’t think this is a fair assessment of Catholic understanding nor of the Fathers. I say this because perhaps you are thinking that Catholics, including the ECFs, used the Bible as a proof-text for the beliefs of the Church.

The reason I said what I did is because I read some of the commentaries the ECF’s made about the bread of life discourse, and from those comments, it was evident to me that they did not think it had anything to do with the Eucharist.

I see. To be frank, I haven’t read the passages you’re referring to. I could only guess why they wrote what they did concerning John 6 and its connection to the Eucharist. I would caution us all, though, to be careful in our reading of the ECFs or any other writings of the Saints or Church documents. They must always be understood within the context of the whole of Church teaching, from which they sprang. None of them stand on their own. Certainly the Bible itself doesn’t. Without understanding these writings’ proper place within the Church they are easily misinterpreted and misused by all and sundry.


#16

[quote=Fidei Defensor]The truth is, no one ever knows for sure. It’s just a feeling you have inside yourself. That’s where faith comes in; faith is a belief in something that cannot be proved. Proofs exist for humans to understand things clearly. But God cannot be fully defined in human terms; he is above human comprehension. Thus, faith is the only thing we can go with.
[/quote]

Well Said!


#17

[quote=Steven87]I’ve recently been thinking that, what if catholicism isn’t the true faith, and how do you guys keep faith.

[/quote]

Steven:

Are you talking about Catholic vs. Protestant, or Catholic vs. Islam or Hinduism??? As far as Christianity is concerned, consider the following:

A. Jesus Christ was GOD - correct?? Now, the incarnation of GOD in the manner portayed in Christianity is very unique. Hinduism has Gods becoming human all the time - only they do so to gamble, fornicate and party… Anyway, if the purpose of the incarnation of Jesus Christ was to start a religion of “The Book,” why didn’t he write it himself and spare us a significant amount of confusion?? Think about it. GOD himself on Earth and he doesn’t write a single word of inspired scripture.

B. To continue, if God intended for Christianity to be a religion of “The Book,” why didn’t he at least write the “prologue” and spell this out for us???

C. To continue further… If God intended for Christianity to absorb a book as the sole rule of faith, why didn’t he simply just say it???

D. To continue yet further… If God intended for Christianity to be based on Sola Scriptura, why then did he NOT commission his Apostles to write???

E. If that isn’t enough, why did only 3-5 of 12 Apostles write anything??? (the number varies depending on who you actually consider to be an Apostle)

F. If the Bible were to be the sole rule of faith, why did the Holy Spirit wait 350 years to officially Canonize scripture?? That is something that should have happened late first century if the Bible were to be the sole rule of faith.

(The above arguments are taken from Scott Hahn’s tape series, “Bible Alone?”)

Now, if you are talking Catholic vs. Protestant, the above argument should suffice. However, if not, just add to the above the COMPLETE REVERESALS recently on major topics of divorce, homosexuality, birth control and abortion that every Protestant denomination rejected for CENTURIES based on the Bible alone… They are all now accepted … so which Bible verses changed to permit this complete reversal???

Think about what Christ instituted - Mathew 16:15-19… The Church and the Papacy… Both of which still stand today, sometimes in spite of themselves!!! If your question is Catholic vs. Protestant, there is only one obvious answer… If it’s Catholic vs. “something else,” then there is still only one answer, but I can’t really comment on other faiths.


#18

I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.

The primary verses used by the early church for believe in the eucharist was the last supper discourses. Why them? Because there was simply nobody who contested the doctrine of the eucharist that we know of. So the exegetical resources of John 6, while some used them, went largely untapped. I dont know who you are referring to in the early church did not believe John 6 to be alluding to the eucharist. At worst they would be referring to a secondary interpretation of those verses; not particularly wanting to go into a discussion on the eucharist because of the subject which they were writing about. A classic example is when Jesus says “Behold your mother” at the cross to John. This has 2 meanings; one immediate, the other doctrinal. Protestants make the error of only accepting one of those meanings. A thousand other passages of the bible display this characteristic.


#19

[quote=Steven87] I know i’m a little paranoid but the word hell des nothing but make me sick to my stomach, and if you mention eternity and hell in the same sentence you’d better get me a bucket!
[/quote]

Good. That is what it should do.

Now, should you dwell on that? Absolutely not. You should embrace the love and kindness of our Lord that keeps us from that destination.

How do I know this is the real Church? Easy. I believe in the authority of the Church. Once you come to accept that, everything else falls in line. Matthew 16:18 gave Peter the power to bind and loose doctrine. And that power has been passed down from Pope to Pope through the laying of hands and apostolic succession.

That is good enough for me!


#20

[quote=ephphatha]I’m kind of new to Catholic apologetics, but since I’ve been visiting this board, I have found it interesting that so many Catholics have said “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist” is what keeps them in the Catholic faith. The reason I find it so interseting is that it’s what seems to keep a lot of protestants out of the Catholic faith.

I’m also finding it interesting that John 6 seems to be the primary reason Catholics believe in “the True Presence in the Holy Eucharist.” The reason I find it interesting is because several years ago, I looked at some of the writings of the early Church fathers, and more recent theologians such as Cajetan, and even among those who seemed to believe in the real presence, most of them didn’t think John 6 had anything to do with it. I think when I get the time, I’m going to do that research over again and see what I find.

I also find it interesting that John 6 is what keeps so many Catholics in the faith, when John 6 is my primary reason for being a Calvinist.
[/quote]

Hi ephphatha,
Are you familiar with Dr Scott Hahn at Franscican University of Stubenville? He is a convert and was once a staunch Calvinist…the strongest in his Seminary Class. In his conversion story he speaks about a period when he was preaching at his Church on the Gospel of John and when he got to John 6, he began for the first time a serious study. At that point, he felt he needed to stop the John series because of the doubts that began when he first began to understand this passage. Scott Hahn is an amazing individual and responsible for lighting a fire under so many cradle Catholics (myself included) - and has drawn literally hundreds of Presbyterian ministers into the Catholic Church. Also see the Coming Home Network on Scott Hahn’s wegsite under Catholic Links…see Marcus Grodi’s (another staunch Calvinist) conversion story
Anyway, see the below links when you begin (again) your research.
Thanks and God Bless,
dano
scotthahn.com/
mindspring.com/~jdarcy/files/drhahn.html
saintjoe.com/p/product_search.pl?keywords=Gospel+of+John&topic=10001&sbmt2=Search


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.