I need some answers.

I have been a Catholic all my life, but there have been some questions regarding the faith that have troubled me lately.

  1. How can Catholics say that we believe in God’s grace when we believe that one goes to Heaven or Hell based on whether or not they died in a state of mortal sin? That seems to teach a works-based salvation, not a faith-based salvation. See John 3:16 and Ephesians 2:8-9.

  2. Where in the Bible does it say that we are not to take Holy Communion if we are in a state of unrepented mortal sin? Remember, if it’s not in the Bible, then it’s not doctrine.

  3. Why do Catholics confess to a priest, when we should be confessing to God? The Bible says that only Jesus Christ is our mediator with God.

  4. Where in the Bible is Purgatory mentioned?

  5. How is not idolatry to pray to the Virgin Mary and the saints? Again, the Bible says that Jesus Christ is the ONLY way to our Heavenly Father. Also, how are the statute, crucifixes, rosaries, etc. not forbidden graven images?

  6. Where in the Bible does it say that things like masturbation, cohabitation, etc. are sins? I can’t seem to find any references to these. In fact, I can’t seem to find any distinction between venial and mortal sin. James 2:10 actually seems to teach AGAINST the venial vs. moral sin doctrine.

P.S.
I took Holy Communion today even though I had been at a bar last night and got a little drunk. The reasons why I didn’t abstain was because I couldn’t find a definitive answer as to whether I had committed a mortal sin, or merely a venial sin, or if I had even sinned at all.

Second P.S.
Can a non-Catholic be saved? It seems to me that any Christian who accepts Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and doesn’t die in a state of mortal sin will be saved.

Third P.S.
Can you be considered “born-again” as a Catholic? I do feel that I had a spiritual reawakening that caused me to take the Church seriously. Does that count as being “born-again”?

According to forum rules you should only have one subject per thread. You have six

The question above are more protestant than Catholic. It make me doubt that you are Catholic

You could do a search of the site for most of them have been answered ad nauseum before.

  1. James said that It is not by faith alone you are saved. Works are evident in the Bible Matthew 16:27
    For the Son of Man will come with his angels in his Father’s glory, and then He will repay everyone according to his conduct.
    Romans 2:6
    6 who will render to every man according to his works: So where do you get the idea that works aren’t important?

2.1 Corinthians 11:27 Where do you get the non-sense that if it isn’t in the Bible it is not doctrine. That is not Catholic teaching in fact it is against Catholic teachings. You must remember that the bible came out of the Church. The Church did not come out of the Bible. The Bible wasn’t even around as we know it until the second century.
3. John 20:23 Catholic Confession

  1. Biblical and Jewish Traditional Beliefs About Purgatory

  2. Graven images mean that you believe they are god. Do you believe that saints and statues are gods? Only if you do are they idols.

  3. Mortal and Venial Sins

You changed your post after I posted
Your additional questions.

Of course non-Catholics can be saved but my personal opinion it is harder for them since they cannot avail themselves of the graces God gives through His Church.

Born again means baptism.

Where in the bible does it say that if it’s not in the bible then it’s not doctrine?

Good point. :thumbsup:

I think the “subject” is me trying to find answers to the conflicts that I’ve been having, but the moderators can edit this thread if they disagree with me.

I have been baptized in the Church, taken my First Holy Communion in the Church, and have received the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Church.

I currently live with my Protestant grandfather, and have been watching many Protestant programs, such as Jack Van Impe Presents.

This is quite obvious. I am glad that you are seeking truth. Welcome to the forums.

It is hard to answer so many questions in depth that is why it is better to stick to one topic at a time.

This is a lot of questions to answer. As others have mentioned, I would suggest listing one at a time and allow people to answer.

BUT, I strongly suggest taking these questions to a Catholic Priest. Call the parish office and schedule a time with any priest (or your favorite one). The Priest will sit down with you and answer your questions. You might need more than one meeting.

Also, I would suggest enrolling in RCIA. While RCIA is typically for new Catholics, existing Catholics can enroll if they want/need to learn more about the Catholic faith.

There a number of books avalible which you can read and lots of topics here (not the forums, but the essays, etc). I would suggest finding a book here on Catholic.com, in the Shop section. Of course, you could always purchase it else where, but if this site sells it, you know it’s really Catholic.

Finally, just a suggestion: when posting some of your questions, please post or repost that your are living with a Protestant Grandfather. It will help people draft their replies.

God Bless

Yes! Much harder… In fact isn’t it ironic so many of them go on and on about God’s grace, but refuse to accept it and go so far as to deny that it’s freely available to anyone who truly believes in the teachings of our Lord.

We say that one is in a “state of grace” when one is not in a state of mortal sin for a reason! Forgiveness is from God. We must ask for forgiveness, but it is not our asking that saves us.

Catholics do not believe this.

When Catholics confess to a priest, they are confessing to God.

Most Christians would be okay asking a living human being to pray for them. Many Christians also believe in an afterlife. So Catholics are also fine with asking deceased human beings who are known to be in heaven (Mary and the Saints) to pray for them.

One can certainly have a spiritual reawakening. I returned to the Church after about 7 years of atheism. You could call that being “born again,” as long as it is not taken to mean that, by being “born again,” you are part of some sort of elect, or have met a sufficient criteria for salvation.

I also recommend the following free Catholic Home Study Course:

amm.org/chss/chss.asp

Finally, I haven’t read them yet, but I hear the following are very good:

shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/catholicism-for-dummies-2nd-edition.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/bible-proofs-for-catholic-truths.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/the-salvation-controversy.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/answer-me-this.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/where-is-that-in-the-bible.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/why-is-that-in-tradition.html
shop.catholic.com/books-1/apologetics/a-biblical-defense-of-catholicism.html

regarding Confessions to Priests:

Listen to: catholic.com/radio/shows/i-absolve-you-confession-to-a-priest-7276

and read:
catholic.com/magazine/articles/the-physician-of-the-soul
catholic.com/tracts/the-forgiveness-of-sins

John 20:20-24

Jesus gave the priests the ablity to forgive sins… he said to them what ever sins you forgive, will be forgiven in Heaven, what ever sins you retain will be retained in Heaven.

Honestly to me this post looks like someone looking for an argument because almost all of these questions can be answered with even just a basic search. I will say and it might have already been said but we don’t pray to Mary or the Saints we ask them to carry our prayers to God since we believe they are closer to Him being they are in Heaven. Dying and going to Heaven doesn’t remove you from the body of the church.
It is no different than asking for help in petitioning God for each other on this forum

Okay…in spite of your scattergun style, I’ll take a swing because it seems to em that you’ve been fed a good dose of non-Catholic or even anti-Catholic propaganda.

  1. How can Catholics say that we believe in God’s grace when we believe that one goes to Heaven or Hell based on whether or not they died in a state of mortal sin? That seems to teach a works-based salvation, not a faith-based salvation. See John 3:16 and Ephesians 2:8-9.

It only seems that way to those who follow the modern new winds of doctrines of men that fuel the majority of n-C communities. Before you buy into this one, you need to read Matthew 25:31-46 and John 14:15

  1. Where in the Bible does it say that we are not to take Holy Communion if we are in a state of unrepented mortal sin? Remember, if it’s not in the Bible, then it’s not doctrine.

Second part first here. nowhere in teh Word of God does it even infer the bolded part. Not even close. See these 3 threads.

[LIST]
*] It’s NOT in the Bible, okay?
*]It’s NOT in the Bible, okay? (Part II)
*]“If anyone teaches/preaches something that is not in scripture”
*]Does the Bible teach that everything that we believe and practice has to be found in its pages?
[/LIST]
Then as to your point about the Eucharist, my blog article should show you the Biblical basis for this doctrine. The Eucharist IS Scriptural

  1. Why do Catholics confess to a priest, when we should be confessing to God? The Bible says that only Jesus Christ is our mediator with God.

You sure you were/are a Catholic?:shrug: See these articles from my blog. Y’see, you’re not the first person to come along with this kind of stuff.

[LIST]
*]Catholic Confession
*]Scriptures About Penance
[/LIST]

  1. Where in the Bible is Purgatory mentioned?

Counter point…where is Trinity mentioned? There is a lot that is implicitly taught and there is more than ample scripture and tradition to back it up. Biblical and Jewish Traditional Beliefs About Purgatory

  1. How is not idolatry to pray to the Virgin Mary and the saints? Again, the Bible says that Jesus Christ is the ONLY way to our Heavenly Father.

More n-C misinformation. See the following.

[LIST]
*]The Intercession of the Saints
*]Saint Worship?
*]Praying to the Saints
[/LIST]

Also, how are the statute, crucifixes, rosaries, etc. not forbidden graven images?

This is a common propaganda attack that has plenty of good answers.

[LIST]
*]Iconoclasm: Or: Catholics Worship Graven Images NOT
*] Do Catholics Worship Statues?
[/LIST]
(Cont’d)

  1. Where in the Bible does it say that things like masturbation, cohabitation, etc. are sins? I can’t seem to find any references to these. In fact, I can’t seem to find any distinction between venial and mortal sin. James 2:10 actually seems to teach AGAINST the venial vs. moral sin doctrine.

The Church’s teaching on mortal and venial sins?

1st John 5 16,17 says,
16] If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal; I do not say that one is to pray for that.
17] All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal.

P.S.
I took Holy Communion today even though I had been at a bar last night and got a little drunk. The reasons why I didn’t abstain was because I couldn’t find a definitive answer as to whether I had committed a mortal sin, or merely a venial sin, or if I had even sinned at all.

C’mon, you know better. If you got drunk and drove your car then you put you and others at risk of injury and/or death. If you got so impaired that your morals were compromised…again, you know better. The verses above are very clear.

Second P.S.
Can a non-Catholic be saved? It seems to me that any Christian who accepts Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and doesn’t die in a state of mortal sin will be saved.

Maybe…that’s above your, my and everyone else’s pay grade, so you’d be better off leaving it to God and working out your own salvation with fear and trembling as it says in Philippians 2:12

Third P.S.
Can you be considered “born-again” as a Catholic? I do feel that I had a spiritual reawakening that caused me to take the Church seriously. Does that count as being “born-again”?

Catholics are born again and we’ve been preaching and teaching the same Gospel of salvation for 2,000 years. Nowhere does the Bible tell us that we to “receive Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior” Read it for yourself …it’s not there.

[LIST]
*]Born Again - The Bible Way
*]Are Catholics Born Again?
*]Born Again in Baptism
*]Who REALLY Preaches “A Different Gospel”?
[/LIST]

I’m actually watching Jack Van Impe Presents right now.

And thank you everyone for your comments.

Please don’t assume. I didn’t drive at all that night, and I don’t recall doing anything immoral other than drinking. Additionally, I did pray and ask God for forgiveness before Mass.

I suppose I should consult my priest as to whether it was proper for me to take Communion.

Van Impe’s not even Catholic…why bother with someone who’s going to teach you wrong doctrines/

Watch this instead.
The Meaning of the Mass - Venerable Fulton Sheen

We Are in Two Wars - Archbishop Fulton Sheen

** The Sacrament of Confession **

** Wasting Your Life - Venerable Fulton Sheen **

Locoz, You raised fair questions. I’ve asked them too. If you send me a PM I will discuss them with you. But here I will only say this. We are saved by grace through Jesus sacrifice for us. None of us deserve this. And mankind gets worse all the time. None of us can be so good that we would deserve being saved and brought to Heaven. You can’t get saved by works, but your works do count. I’m not sure how. There are many opinions and none are without some fault. But James said it best. I noticed you quoted him, and that’s good. He said he’d show the people his faith through his works. You need both, faith in God, and good works which means obeying God’s laws.

Jesus made it easy to understand. One, love God. To love God means to obey God. The Bible can teach you what God approves of and what He hates. Read Proverbs, to start. Second thing Jesus said was to love each other. Treat everyone else, even enemies, as if they were you yourself. Never take revenge, but pray for that person. Do all things as if you were doing them for God Himself. Let no vile speech come out of your mouth. Be blameless, so even if an accusation is brought against you, you will know you’re innocent of it, and so will God. And nothing can be hidden from God Our Father. All will be revealed. Pray about everything. God loves our prayers to Him.

Think about all this your whole life. I did, and I know I am unworthy of God, but I pray for His help everyday.

I’m aware, but he actually lauds the Catechism and the Catholic Church. He just said that he believes what the Catechism says regarding salvation.

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