How to explain the promises of the Brown Scapular to "Bible-Only" Christians?


#1

Need help addressing this …

The problem that make’s the Catholic Church not a church any longer is that the Catholic’s for several centurys now have departed from the Doctrines set forth by the Apostle’s in the Bible. Here is an example. On my desk in front of me I have a “Brown Scapular” In the paper that is with the item among other things it says this “Whoever dies in this shall not suffer eternal fire.” On the Scapular itself it says this “Whosoever dies wearing this Scapular shall not suffer eternal fire. Our lady’s Scapular Promises” I know that the item is authentic because my wife was raised as a Catholic, and her mother used to put one of these on her every night. I find it appalling that the work of Christ has been replaced by a piece of cloth.

… I know that I will find no mention of the Brown Scapular in the bible but are there any passages that I can use to support the promises made by Our Lady and that “the work of Christ WASN’T replaced by a piece of cloth”?


#2

The Brown Scapular is from a “Privat Revelation”. We as Catholics are ALWAYS to follow Church Teaching. Private Revelations that are Church Approved are allowed but are not required.

That said, the Brown Scapular is a wonderful Marian devotion. In my own words and understanding, the wearing of the Brown Scapular give the wearer special graces, one of which is going to Heaven when you die (so long as you are in a state of Grace). If I commit an unrepented Mortal Sin - I expect I will go to Hell. Wearing fo the Brown Scapular is a commitment to live a Catholic life with Mary guiding you.

So don’t have your Bible loving friends feel bad and don’t feel bad yourself. Brown Scapulars enhance the faith - they don’t detract from it. For myself, I love the devotion. It reminds me of being Christ like everytime I feel the scratchy wool against my skin or have to re-adjust the string from showing.


#3

Galatians 1:8 plainly states, “**8But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!” **That is essentially what the promise of the brown scapular is, a false Gospel.

David


#4

Furthermore, wearing the brown scapular entails much more than simply wearing it. There are a whole set of daily devotions that attend it.

Anyone who has the faith in Christ to perform these devotions is would probably go to heaven anyway. The scapular is a material reminder of the grace we’ve been given through Christ’s death.

It pains me to see people argue against the Church’s teachings when they don’t even understand what they are arguing against.


#5

Here’s a link on the Brown Scapular:
ewtn.com/expert/answers/brown_scapular.htm

Maybe explaining it in military terms will help. Now, in the battle against the forces of evil God will triumph in the end. Look in the Book of Revelation for exact passages to confirm this. So when we are participating in the battle against evil, victory is always on our side.

Think of the Rosary as your weapon and the Brown Scapular as your dog tag. Although they are powerful weapons against the evil one, their effectiveness is dependant on the person. Now, one might be enlisted and receive the best military training and the best weaponry but they are useless if he sits on the battefield wearing his dog tag and holding his weapon but refusing to combat the enemy. If the soldier does make use of his training and weapons the more confidence he will gain with each victory and as a result progressively harder battles will be assigned. The battles we fight are fought by doing what was commanded by Christ. If we do not do what was commanded by Christ, we are no longer fighting with Him. And those that aren’t with Him are against Him.

That is essentially what the promise of the brown scapular is, a false Gospel

Please refer to what exactly in Sacred Scripture the promise contradicts. For example, if someone said they saw the Virgin Mary appearing to them saying that there are now 4 Divine Persons rather than 3 we would know that private revelation is false. Before doing so, please read the section “Presumptuous devotees” (# 97-# 100) of the book “True Devotion to Mary”:
ewtn.com/library/Montfort/TRUEDEVO.HTM


#6

the brown piece of cloth does nothing…

it’s faith in God’s promise… the cloth is a representation
of that promise, it’s like wearing a crucifix… without the
faith in what it represents, it’s a piece of jewelery…

:slight_smile:


#7

[quote=DavidB]Galatians 1:8 plainly states, “**8But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!” **That is essentially what the promise of the brown scapular is, a false Gospel.

David
[/quote]

The Brown Scapular is not a gospel, nor is it false (although your understanding of the promises associated with it may be), so your conclusion is wrong. :rolleyes:

Here’s a link to a short statement on the Scapular that may help.

EWTN - Brown Scapular

The above description specifically notes:

**“Those who die wearing this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire.” ** This must not be understood superstitiously or magically, but in light of Catholic teaching that perseverance in faith, hope and love are required for salvation. The scapular is a powerful **reminder ** of this Christian obligation and of Mary’s promise to help those consecrated to her obtain the grace of final perseverance. (Emphasis added.)

Better yet, here’s a statement straight from the horse’s mouth. Don’t take my word for it, listen to the Carmelites. :smiley:

Rules and Ritual for the Brown Scapular

Hope this helps.


#8

[quote=DavidB]Galatians 1:8 plainly states, “**8But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!” **
[/quote]

That is essentially what the promise of the brown scapular is, a false Gospel.

DavidThis is a nice anti-Catholic allegation.
“A false gospel”? What do you know?

It probably hasn’t occurred to you that the devotion to the scapular is devotion to Christ Himself and His saving sacrifice on the cross. I guess you just had to step in and offer a comment on something that you felt like you could bash the Catholic Church about.

Why would this promise be made by the Blesed Virgin about the scapular? Don’t know and don’t care, do you?

Let’s see here…
The scapular is made of wool…wool comes from sheep, and it reminds us of our love, faith, and devotion to “the Lamb of God , who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29, Revelation 7:17 & 13:8 & 22:3).

It displays pictures that speak to us of the shed blood of Our Lord, reminding us of the terrible price with which we were redeemed from our sins and of the love and mercy of God in that redemption. (John 3:16)

In being worn around our necks, it is a constant reminder to live out this saving faith and relationship with Christ.

Is that expression of living faith in Christ enough to save us poor misguided “false gospel” Catholics?

**Matthew 10:32 Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven.

Luke 12:8 And I say to you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God.**
Pax vobiscum,


#9

Far from being a departure from the Gospel, it is accepting part of the fruits of the work of Redemption by Christ.

In fact, the same can be said of anything we accept from Mary, Our Mother in the order of Grace. She obtains everything for us from Christ. We accept it from her for our salvation and sanctification. She prepares us as a mother would so we can be that much more pleasing to Our Lord. Appearing before God clothed by Mary in the merits of Christ brings credit to both Mary and Christ. To Mary, because it shows her charity to one of God’s little ones. To Christ, because Mary does everything to please Him. We please Our Lord by submitting to Mary in all things.

Those who rail against this do not see how God is magnified in it. They have taken it upon themselves, upon their own understanding, their own abilities to defend God’s honor. It is as if God needed them to prevent this evil. It is as if other people’s salvation depended on them making sure Christ is not obscured by anything or anyone else. Perhaps they believe that as long as you honor only God - and don’t “obscure” Him by honoring anyone or anything else - then you fulfill your duty to others also?

Are they any different from the Pharisees who complained that Jesus was obscuring God? Are they any different from the Pharisees who insisted that as long as you gave your money to them, you fulfilled your duty to your parents?

Mark 7:9 And he said to them: Well do you make void the commandment of God, that you may keep your own tradition. 10 For Moses said: Honour thy father and thy mother; and He that shall curse father or mother, dying let him die. 11 But you say: If a man shall say to his father or mother, Corban, (which is a gift,) whatsoever is from me, shall profit thee. 12 And further you suffer him not to do any thing for his father or mother, 13 Making void the word of God by your own tradition, which you have given forth. And many other such like things you do.

Note that these are the same people who go out of their way to also prevent anyone from being called “father”, using the following verse:

Matthew 23:9 And call none your father upon earth; for one is your father, who is in heaven.

As seen above in verses 12-13, their misinterpretation of Matt 23:9 has led them to avoid honoring mother and father, offending God afterall.

In conclusion, it should rather be held that we offend God by not honoring Christ’s mother and accepting her loving help. And we offend God by not honoring the Church Fathers and obeying their wise counsel. Only we should have due respect, seeing them as representing God’s providence to us, not as competing with Our Father in heaven. Now you see why all the more they should be honored and obeyed - for the very fact that one is Our Father in heaven.

hurst.


#10

11And God did extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, 12so that handkerchiefs or aprons were carried away from his body to the sick, and diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them. (Acts 19:11-12)
This Scripture passage clearly shows that God can and did use handkerchiefs or aprons as a means by which some received special graces in New Testament times. Couldn’t God use Brown Scapulars as a means by which some recieve special graces today?


#11

In addition to what other Bible reference some Catholics have already posted, I heard yesterday a priest on the radio speak of the brown scapular with reference to the Bible verse to “put on the yoke of Christ”. (I can’t remember the verse’s location in the Bible and I don’t have time right now to search for it right now. If anyone knows it, please post it.) That’s is why the brown scapular is worn across the shoulders like a yoke.

So as to the promises of the Brown Scapular for Bible Christians, anyone wearing the yoke of Christ at the time of their death would certainly seem to be saved by my understanding of salvation. The yoke of Christ certainly should be a great assurance of salvation that Bible Christians recognize.


#12

[quote=gardenswithkids]…I heard yesterday a priest on the radio speak of the brown scapular with reference to the Bible verse to “put on the yoke of Christ”. (I can’t remember the verse’s location in the Bible and I don’t have time right now to search for it right now. If anyone knows it, please post it.) That’s is why the brown scapular is worn across the shoulders like a yoke.
[/quote]

I did a web search to find the verse, and I found it in a sermon posted by an evangelical Protestant minister on the assurance of salvation. He wrote “…put on the yoke of Christ, which Jesus describes in these terms in Matthew 11:28-30: ‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.’”


#13

[quote=Church Militant]This is a nice anti-Catholic allegation.
[/quote]

It’s truth. It’s not anti-Catholic and it’s not allegation. If I were anti-Catholic, I wouldn’t be here. Sometimes hearing the truth hurts. Often, telling the truth hurts as well. It causes one to endure people who misinterpret your intentions and misunderstand your points.

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Actually, I do care, which is why I posted the truth. I don’t accept this as something that came from the real Mary. Perhaps a false apparition, but not Jesus’ mother.

If everything everyone here has already said were true, that the wearer must be a faithful Catholic in good standing and not have unconfessed mortal sin in their life in order for the promise of the scapular to be valid, then the scapular is useless, because such people ALREADY have scripture promises that they will inherit the Kingdom of Heaven. Thus the scapular provides no assurance beyond what they’ve already received.

But that’s not how the scapular is understood across the majority of Catholics is it? Don’t most Catholics think they are guaranteed salvation by wearing it regardless of their sin condition? Aren’t the official words of the promise “whoever wears the scapular until death, will be preserved from hell”. I know this because I clearly remember receiving the brown scapular as a teenager and being informed of it’s promises clung to it as my assurance of Heaven. Who wouldn’t want such assurance . . . but there’s the rub, cause we already have those assurances in our faith. But faith isn’t tangible, it’s internal and that’s the way God designed faith. He wants us to trust in His Word. By substituting faith in Christ’s Word with faith in a piece of wool, the Catholic Church has, at least in this case, preached a false Gospel.

In addition, the scapular is not a specific reminder of Christ and the Cross, as you’ve mis-stated, it’s actually a symbol of one’s devotion to Mary and relying on her to acquire grace for salvation and forgiveness of sins on your behalf. At least that’s the way New Advent.org describes it. So you’ve twisted it’s meaning into something less offensive in order to try to pass this off to those who know heresy when they see it. We are not called to devote ourselves to Mary, but to Christ. Only through Christ are we saved. So not only is it false to put your faith in this scrap of wool, but to put your faith in Mary is also false.

David

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#14

If everything everyone here has already said were true, that the wearer must be a faithful Catholic in good standing and not have unconfessed mortal sin in their life in order for the promise of the scapular to be valid, then the scapular is useless, because such people ALREADY have scripture promises that they will inherit the Kingdom of Heaven. Thus the scapular provides no assurance beyond what they’ve already received.

Useless in what respect? If I am already aware of what scripture promises me, then am I doing something superfluous and useless by re-reading those promises in scripture? Or in listening to a charismatic episcopal homily that repeats again and again the promises or scripture? Are you suggesting that once a person is aware of those promises, that the person must discard everything in his life that reminds him of those promises or risk being labeled a heretic?

But that’s not how the scapular is understood across the majority of Catholics is it?

Interesting observation. That hasn’t been my experience at all. Do you have a formal survey you are relying on?

Don’t most Catholics think they are guaranteed salvation by wearing it regardless of their sin condition?

Not the Catholics I know.

In addition, the scapular is not a specific reminder of Christ and the Cross, as you’ve mis-stated, it’s actually a symbol of one’s devotion to Mary and relying on her to acquire grace for salvation and forgiveness of sins on your behalf.

Finally, you reveal your complaint. How dare Mary alone be the one chosen to obtain the grace and favor of God and share that with humanity by giving her yes!!

Fiat


#15

[quote=Fiat] Are you suggesting that once a person is aware of those promises, that the person must discard everything in his life that reminds him of those promises or risk being labeled a heretic?
[/quote]

According to the “apparition”, as stated on New Advent.org, it’s more than a mere reminder, it contains power and grace unto salvation. Why are you distorting the stated belief? You and Church Militant seem anxious to spin the scapular into something it isn’t. It’s not a mere reminder as you would have me believe. That’s not an accurate representation.

[quote=Fiat]Finally, you reveal your complaint. How dare Mary alone be the one chosen to obtain the grace and favor of God and share that with humanity by giving her yes!!

Fiat
[/quote]

Correct. Mary is not the “chosen one” - Jesus is. To say otherwise is and always will be heresy.


#16

According to the “apparition”, as stated on New Advent.org, it’s more than a mere reminder, it contains power and grace unto salvation. Why are you distorting the stated belief? You and Church Militant seem anxious to spin the scapular into something it isn’t. It’s not a mere reminder as you would have me believe. That’s not an accurate representation.

DavidB:
No spinning here. Can you quote some direct language for us that isn’t taken out of context.

Correct. Mary is not the “chosen one” - Jesus is. To say otherwise is and always will be heresy.

However, your comment elicits your spin. There’s an a-d-v-er-b-i-a-l clause after my use of the phrase “one chosen” in reference to Mary.

For your benefit, I’ll repeat what I posted earlier:

Finally, you reveal your complaint. How dare Mary alone be the one chosen to obtain the grace and favor of God and share that with humanity by giving her yes!!

Now…what’s with your distortion?

Peace
Fiat


#17

Yes, it is definitely more than a reminder. Let me apologize for anyone who seems to deny this while under attack by others who claim it is a heresy.

It is more than a reminder. It contains power and grace unto salvation, yes. But NOT as an amulet. (Amulets are typically objects that work magic regardless of the state of soul of the person using them). If anyone were to try to use the scapular as an excuse to keep sinning, it would not help them. Saints have said as much.

There are many other devotions and sacramentals that also contain power and grace - some for conversions, some for healing, etc. But none, in the Catholic understanding, are amulets.

One example is the Divine Mercy devotion. The image is to be treated as a vessel to store up grace as we recite “Jesus I trust in Thee”. The promise is directly associated with the picture.

Your state of mind would seem to claim that this is superfluous, right? You might say we have mercy anyway, even without the picture or devotion.

You miss the whole point of the treasures of the Church, it seems. You are certainly in line with Protestant thinking, which asserts that it is by faith alone we obtain salvation.

But salvation requires works to prove our faith. Not works of the Law of Moses, but rather works of the Law of Grace. “If you love me, you will obey my commandments.” We will be judged according to our conduct.

The reason sacramentals give power and grace is because it pleases God to give them to us by these means. The merits still come from Christ at some point, but they are handed out in a definite and orderly fashion. This builds trust, confidence, and enlivens faith.

To oppose this is to be like a gardener to refuses to plant anything to God’s honor, who gives fertile ground.

She is the chosen one to bear Jesus. She is the chosen one to be our Mother. She has been elevated above all other pure creatures because of Christ Himself. To distort this meaning and then knock it down as heresy is so misguided! May God have mercy on you.

hurst


#18

[quote=Sir Knight]Need help addressing this … … I know that I will find no mention of the Brown Scapular in the bible but are there any passages that I can use to support the promises made by Our Lady and that “the work of Christ WASN’T replaced by a piece of cloth”?
[/quote]

The Church does not support this assertion. Thats the easy answer to give them.


#19

Dear DavidB;

Your understanding is not what the Catholic Church teaches about the Brown Scapular.

[quote=DavidB]But that’s not how the scapular is understood across the majority of Catholics is it? Don’t most Catholics think they are guaranteed salvation by wearing it regardless of their sin condition?
[/quote]

No. From my earlier link to the EWTN site:

This, in fact, has been promised to those who faithfully wear the scapular: “Those who die wearing this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire.” This must not be understood superstitiously or magically, but in light of Catholic teaching that perseverance in faith, hope and love are required for salvation. The scapular is a powerful reminder of this Christian obligation and of Mary’s promise to help those consecrated to her obtain the grace of final perseverance.

Note that Mary helps us with her intercessions to Her son on our behalf. She is not the one that grants us our salvation, but by her intercession she brings us closer to her Son.

[quote=DavidB]Aren’t the official words of the promise “whoever wears the scapular until death, will be preserved from hell”. I know this because I clearly remember receiving the brown scapular as a teenager and being informed of it’s promises clung to it as my assurance of Heaven. Who wouldn’t want such assurance . . .
[/quote]

To wear the scapular one must be devoted to Mary (which means one must be devoted to her Son, Jesus, as well.) That is why the investiture is required. One commits themself to certain behaviors when one agrees to wear the scapular. So, it is not the Scapular that magically provides salvation. You are misunderstanding the promise now, just as you misunderstood it in your youth. While I am sorry that you misunderstood the promises, that’s no reason to conclude the Church’s real teaching on the devotion is faulty.

[quote=Davidb…]but there’s the rub, cause we already have those assurances in our faith. But faith isn’t tangible, it’s internal and that’s the way God designed faith. He wants us to trust in His Word. By substituting faith in Christ’s Word with faith in a piece of wool, the Catholic Church has, at least in this case, preached a false Gospel.
[/quote]

Again, you misunderstand the devotion. It IS all about faith. So there is no “rub” between wearing the scapular and faith in God. There is no either/or type of dichotomy. One who wears a scapular has deep faith in Christ Jesus, and asks His mother to help show us the way to Him.


#20

More specifically, she has already interceded and obtained for us grace of salvation from God, under the condition that people wear the brown scapular with proper dispositions.

So, contrary to what you are denying, it can truly be said that she obtains salvation for us who believe her, even though that salvation came from Christ first.

Again, this is not true. Being devoted to Jesus is not a prerequisite! Part of the value of the scapular is that Mary will bring you to that point, bring you to know Jesus, bring to be devoted to Him.

Investiture is require to share in the good works of the Carmelites, and to obtain the sabbatine privilege. You definitely do agree to follow certain behavior, but it is in repsonse to the wishes of Mary.

The behavoir of one devoted to Mary is to join with her in thanking and praising God for all He has done for her, including answering her prayer for the redeemer.

No, not magically. But it does provide it.

I don’t think he misunderstood them. They promise to preserve us from hell. It is a beautiful assurance of heaven, provided we foster our devotion to her as our benefactor. She in turn leverages our devotion to her by forming us into her sons, pleasing to God.

I think you are the one misunderstanding the devotion. It is about faith, yes. But someone can benefit by the scapular without having “deep faith in Christ Jesus”. We are benefitting from Mary’s “deep faith” and from her “works” that come from her love for Jesus. She is rescuing us sinners.

Jude 1:23 But others save, pulling them out of the fire. And on others have mercy, in fear, hating also the spotted garment which is carnal.

My fellow Catholics, please stop watering down our treasures. Stop capitulating to those without faith as if that will bring them faith.

Protestants have no basis to argue this, except by their own failure to truly trust that Christ works through his faithful, who are part of his Mystical Body.

John 14:14 If you shall ask me any thing in my name, that I will do.

Mary has asked and obtained. Christ will do it for her, in her person. The conditions are plain for this particular treasure. Wear the brown scapular, observe chastity, pray the rosary or fast on Wed/Sat. Although this is not “necessary” for salvation to those who have been given other means, it could be the only way for others. But even if you are already strong in faith, having trusted Jesus for your redemption, this does not take away from that. If Jesus is in us that way, we will still love Mary, since He does. Either way, love our heavenly Mother!

Sweet Heart of Mary, be my Salvation!

hurst


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