Question about salvation for convert to Judaism


#1

I know a man in his fifties, a bright business owning man with a Masters degree, etc. He was rasied in a Roman Catholic home, went to Catholic school throughout his elementary years and then again in High School. He received all of the usual Roman Catholic Sacraments (Baptism, First Confession, First Eucharist, Confirmation).

In his twenties he married a Jewish woman and shortly after marriage he converted to Judaism. To this day he has not returned to the Church.

Does anyone know what the Church teaches regarding a person in this situation?

Is it likely that he can still receive salvation even though he has rejected Christ (it would seem to be difficult for this person to claim invincible ignorance…though of course only God can judge his soul and life)?

Is this a person that should be prayed for in terms of conversion back to the Catholic faith?

Help?


#2

For one thing, it is acceptable and commendable to pray for anyone whome is not in the Catholic Church and that they may come to salvation, and to fullness of truth. (it is also acceptable to pray for the salvation of those inside the Church, as we all need it!)

It is difficult to comment on this case because we do not know the state of this man’s heart. However, we can say with certainty that if he left the faith exclusively for the reason of marrying this woman, them he is in great danger of condemnation. He would thereby be not only rejecting Christ, but in fact putting another thing (in this case a person) as the ultimate goal in his life, which is actually the very substance of what mortal sin is.

That being said, it is possible that this man, due to incredibly poor catechesis and the lies that are so prevalent in this world, believes that it truly does not matter which religion one is in. In such a case, we can say that he may attain salvation, though we by no means know this for certain, and it would be very unlikely for a person to be as ignorant as this idea would require. Therefore, I would certainly recommend prayer.


#3

To say that one knows the claims of the Church [or even the basic credal positions of Christianity] does not imply that a given individual ever accepted those claims.

Grace is needed to “accept”:

-the divinity of Christ
-that He is the awaited Messiah
-that the CC is the Church Christ founded

There is a distinction to be made between “rejecting” Christ,
and the simple position: I do not accept the claims - of the
followers of Jesus of Nazareth - to the effect that He was both
the Son of God and Messiah.

A given Christian may view same as “rejecting” Christ.

An individual - who does not accept Jesus of Nazareth
as Messiah - does not accept, further, the claims of His followers.
There may be no “emotive” element - “rejecting” ! - involved.

In a given case, it could be a matter of:

-disinterest

or

-acceptance of the Judaic belief: God is One, not Three
Persons, in One

"Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheinu Adonai Echad."

“Hear, O Israel, the Lord, our G-d, the Lord is One.”

As to the state of another…vis a vis “salvation”…I would leave that in God’s gracious hands.

Best,

reen12


#4

That would all depend, like the posters above say, on the state of the man’s heart, and the reasons WHY he left the Catholic faith.
There is, however, a form of apostasy from Christianity from which it is impossible to recover from. It is covered in Hebrews 6:4-8 and is similar in principle to sinning against the Holy Spirit. Only God can judge whether any given person has actually done that though.

Jaypeeto3


#5

You need to find out what his opinion of Christ is. Becoming a Jew in his case may not necessarily mean rejecting Christ, he may simply have decided to worship God in the Judaic form.

If he has rejected Christ, he may be in trouble. If he still looks upon Christ as his savior, and considers himself a “Messianic Jew” then you would need to ask a priest about his situation.

Thal59


#6

It is obvious that there is no way for me to know this man’s heart, only God can know that. My concern is that he had a very sound upbringing in the Catholic faith and attended twelve years of Catholic schools–schools that were strong in the faith I might add. He personally chose the High School he attended and it was an all male orthodox Roman Catholic School.

I know that at some point when he was younger, in College I think, he fell into an aetheistic attitude. Then not terribly long after college he met a Jewish woman, married her, and then converted to Judaism. It is my understanding that when non-Jewish men marry Jews, they must agree to convert to Judaism…not sure if that holds true today.

Anyway, my concern is that it seems on the surface to not be a case of invincible ignorance. I feel as if I should start doing some fasting and mortifying, offering up Masses and rosaries, etc., for this person. However, if our faith teaches that he is already spiritually sound, then there would little point to praying for his conversion back to the Catholic faith. In other words, if his conversion to Judaism was a good spiritual move for his eternal soul, then there is no point in asking the Lord to help him convert.


#7

[quote=TPJCatholic]It is obvious that there is no way for me to know this man’s heart, only God can know that. My concern is that he had a very sound upbringing in the Catholic faith and attended twelve years of Catholic schools–schools that were strong in the faith I might add. He personally chose the High School he attended and it was an all male orthodox Roman Catholic School.

I know that at some point when he was younger, in College I think, he fell into an aetheistic attitude. Then not terribly long after college he met a Jewish woman, married her, and then converted to Judaism. It is my understanding that when non-Jewish men marry Jews, they must agree to convert to Judaism…not sure if that holds true today.

Anyway, my concern is that it seems on the surface to not be a case of invincible ignorance. I feel as if I should start doing some fasting and mortifying, offering up Masses and rosaries, etc., for this person. However, if our faith teaches that he is already spiritually sound, then there would little point to praying for his conversion back to the Catholic faith. In other words, if his conversion to Judaism was a good spiritual move for his eternal soul, then there is no point in asking the Lord to help him convert.
[/quote]

Why don’t you ask him why he converted?:slight_smile:


#8

Hi TPJ, I happen to have a Jewish background among others. And, as such I attend both Synagoguge and a protestant church. Just because one goes to a Synagoguge does not mean they have rejected Christ himself. Ask his opinion on various scriptures from time to time like Eze 18, Isaiah 53, 7 and so on.

Don’t judge him, discuss the scriptures with him.


#9

I assume that as a Catholic, he believed in the Trinity, and believed in the divinty of Christ, and believed in the redemption on the cross.

I also assume that now, as a Jew, he no longer believes these things.

Assuming these two things, the Athanasian Creed explicitly states that no one can be saved who rejects these beliefs.
So while i don’t think you’ll find anyone condemning him here, the Church would say that he has put himself in a pretty serious situation.

Lumen Gentium makes it very clear that those who knowingly refuse to enter into the Church or stay in it, cannot achieve salvation.

What he knowsin his heart, we do not know. However, the means of grace available to him only in and through the Church are no longer available to him as he has left the Church, which is Christ’s body. In essence, he has removed himself from Christ’s body. And as Pius XII said in Mystici Corporis Christi, these people find themeslves in a serious deficient situation for they are without the many heavenly helps (grace of the sacraments) for salvation.

No one is ever eternally lost while still living. However, we should pray for him. Objectively, he is in formal apostoasy. He may not be culpable for apostacy if there are extenuating circumstances, such as inculpable ignorance, but this is still a serious situation.


#10

quote: jaypeeto

There is, however, a form of apostasy from Christianity from which it is impossible to recover from.

And that, basically, is how Judaic thought “assessed” those
members of Judaism who accepted Jesus of Nazareth as…
Messiah.

“Apostasy.”

“God is One,” says Judaism, not three in One.

Depends on who one believes, vis a vis “apostasy.”

Best,

reen12


#11

Dan,

I cannot read his heart or mind, yet his foundation was strongly Catholic and then he dropped all that and converted to Judaism. His situation causes me great concern, mainly because he is not the sort can be easily approached or talked to about these matters. He will likely take great offense with anything I asked regarding his conversion away from the Catholic faith.

He owns his own business and is a no-nonsense type of person when it comes to business dealings. He once told me that he was going to make people in Ohio work on Christmas Eve because he does not personally “DO” Christmas, which is not exactly a comment made by a person who respects Jesus’ birth, nor is it a sign of a person who respects Christians in general-imo.


#12

quote: Dan-Man916

I assume that as a Catholic, he believed in the Trinity, and believed in the divinty of Christ, and believed in the redemption on the cross.

quote: reen12

To say that one knows the claims of the Church [or even the basic credal positions of Christianity] does not imply that a given individual ever accepted those claims.

There is a growing Noahide movement. Individuals who were
raised as Christians come to realize that they are, spiritually,
“at home”…with Israel.

That God is One, not three in One.

Noahides love God, and are moved - by Him - to
accept the Noahide…reality -----> Gentiles, acknowledging
the God of Israel, and praying “alongside” Israel.

A Christian may say: God cannot “call” a person to “error.”

And that, of course, would contain the assumptions -
[credal positions]:

-Jesus of Nazareth was both God and Messiah
-God is Three Persons, in one God

A given Noahide might say:

“That is what I was taught…but I’ve always sensed - and
now I know - that God is One, not three in One.”
[credal position].

It is a matter of : conversion…not in the sense
of seeking inclusion within Judaism, but in the sense of
accepting the Noahide reality. “As a Gentile, I accept
the God of Israel…”

"Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheinu Adonai Echad."

And, were a Christian to claim: “…to accept the God of
Israel, is to accept His plan of salvation, which means
accepting Jesus of Nazareth, as Messiah…He is the
fulfillment of God’s Promise to Israel…”

the Noahide may reply: that is your belief…not mine.

As I say, the Noahide movement is growing. It may be
difficult to comprehend this - but, among Noahides, a Christian
assement of their chances for salvation, is a matter
of…indifference. For they have found God, through His
mercy, and their joy is complete.

Best,

reen12


#13

reen,

Feeling joy has no impact on salvation. Truth is truth.


#14

TPJ,

the best thing i can say, then is to pray for him daily, for God’s will.


#15

quote: TPJCatholic

Feeling joy has no impact on salvation. Truth is truth.

quote: reen12

A Christian may say: God cannot “call” a person to “error.”

And that, of course, would contain the assumptions -
[credal positions]:

-Jesus of Nazareth was both God and Messiah
-God is Three Persons, in one God

That you hold that God is three Persons in One means
that you accept same as truth. That this view reflects
theological reality.

These are matters of faith. So I can well respect your
assessment:

quote: TPJCatholic

Feeling joy has no impact on salvation. Truth is truth

while noting:

quote: reen12

…but, among Noahides, a Christian assement
of their chances for salvation, is a matter of…indifference.

For they hold that the following reflects theological reality* -*

"Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheinu Adonai Echad."

“Hear, O Israel, the Lord our G-d, the Lord is One.”

Not three in One. One.

It is a matter of faith.

Best,

reen12


#16

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