Saints in Catholic Church not biblical

I was listening to a pastor(Jack Hibbs) of a Calvary Chapel Church give this message called Saints, Sex & Sinners. He references from 1 Cor 5:1-8. He says in his message that the definition of sainthood in Catholicism is not biblical. He refers St Paul speaking to the Corinthians saying that they are saints/believers.“Those of you who are believers and have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and have been born again, that is you trust Christ for your salvation, for your forgiveness. The bible says you are a saint. Not according to the Catholic definition where you’ve got to achieve sainthood. That is not biblical.” :eek: How as a Catholic would I answer this?

Starting at around minute 4

1 Corinthians 5:1-8 has nothing to do with saints or brethren.
*It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and of a kind that is not found even among pagans; for a man is living with his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. For though absent in body I am present in spirit, and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment in the name of the Lord Jesus on the man who has done such a thing. When you are assembled, and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed. Let us, therefore, celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. (1 Corinthians 5:1-8)*1 Corinthians 5 has to do with immorality in the Church.


People in the first and second century died trying to recover the bones of the martyrs for veneration.

Evidently those who knew Jesus and who were taught directly by the apostles were in error. :shrug:


Your looking at the oral / written tradition argument where protestants believe that unless it is in scripture that it isn’t a part of God’s revelation.

A Catholic would probably know or learn about the veneration of the martyrs as mentioned above…about the definition in the first three centuries of the concept of communion of saints - including the Church Militant (us), the Church Penitent (the holy souls in purgatory), and the Church Triumphant (the souls in heaven). And this is all very, very ancient and part of true Christian doctrine.

Also, it’s quite interesting that f.e.x they speak of something as not being biblical, while their own Bible is not biblical :shrug: Ex. does it include 2 Maccabees? Surely not, since it has been under the hatred of heretics, particularly that of Luther who “wished it had not come to us at all”. Anyways, this book of the Sacred Scriptures (infallibly accepted as such by several Councils of Holy Church) has a very interesting quote at 15:11-17

When he had armed each of them, not so much with the security of shield and spear as with the encouragement of noble words, he cheered them all by relating a dream, a kind of waking vision, worthy of belief.

What he saw was this: Onias, the former high priest, a noble and good man, modest in bearing, gentle in manner, distinguished in speech, and trained from childhood in all that belongs to excellence, was praying with outstretched arms for the whole Jewish community.

Then in the same way another man appeared, distinguished by his white hair and dignity, and with an air of wondrous and majestic authority.

Onias then said of him, “This is a man who loves his fellow Jews and fervently prays for the people and the holy city—the prophet of God, Jeremiah.”

Stretching out his right hand, Jeremiah presented a gold sword to Judas. As he gave it to him he said, “Accept this holy sword as a gift from God; with it you shall shatter your adversaries.”

Encouraged by Judas’ words, so noble and capable of instilling valor and stirring young hearts to courage, they determined not merely to march, but to charge gallantly and decide the issue by hand-to-hand combat with the utmost courage, since city, sanctuary and temple were in danger.

So here we find two saints, a former High Priest and the prophet Jeremiah, both interceding for the people before God (though, of course, we know they were in the place of the patriarchs or limbus patrum awaiting the coming of Christ, and not yet in heaven). And that’s in the Bible - though of course, to keep up with the sola scriptura heresy, the pages of this book had to be teared away from the Sacred Scripture.

And there’s much more to be learned on the cult of dulia or veneration that Holy Church tributes to the saints, who are members of the body of Christ.

But even if a Catholic was able to answer very well, these teachings can hardly be accepted or understood without a humble heart and acceptance of Sacred Tradition and of the fullness of Sacred Scripture.

That he does not understand the different ways in which the term “saint” is used in the Catholic Church.

Simply, the saints are the people of God, regardless of whether they dwell in Heaven, on Earth or in Purgatory. This is how the Church has always understood and taught what a saint is.

What he is arguing against, however, is the Catholic practice of assigning the title of “Saint” to those whose lives reflect heroic virtue or have been martyred for the Faith and have further been discerned to actually be in Heaven.

It started why before a written word of the NT was written…

The more I thought about this, the more I realized that it posed a problem. It is one thing to dismiss something as peripheral to the faith of the ancient Church, but to dismiss something that was ubiquitous and central to devotion and even to liturgy? G.J.C. Snoek had made just this point in his monograph Medieval Piety from Relics to the Eucharist: A Process of Mutual Interaction. Snoek showed just how much the Christian liturgy itself had been influenced by the ancient cult of relics. I began to realize that dismissing saints and relics was to dismiss the same Church that gave us the Ecumenical councils, Augustine’s doctrines of grace and justification, and the canon of Scripture. I needed to look into this more carefully.

Saints and Relics as Biblical

As I explored this conundrum, the first thing I began to appreciate was just how biblical the practice really was. I realized that the veneration of relics, belief in their miraculous powers, and in the intercession of departed saints and angels was deeply Hebraic and Jewish. We find testimony to it in such places as 2 Kings 13:20-21, 2 Maccabees 15:12-16, and Tobit 12:12-15, considered especially in comparison to Revelation 5:8. (At this point, it was immaterial to me whether Maccabees and Tobit should be considered canonical texts. It was enough that they expressed a historic Jewish belief in these concepts.)

I agree (mostly, I think) with this. My understanding of saints, in terms of those are who dead, is that the Catholic Church considers a ‘saint’ to be someone who has attained entrance into Heaven and shares in the Beatific Vision. Now, the Church declares some people as ‘saint’ when certain actions have been done verifying that they are indeed in Heaven, such as serving a martyr’s death or having miraculous events attributed to an intercession.

From the certain Protestant viewpoint of ‘faith alone’ and ‘once saved, always saved’, it would then hold that all believers in Christ will become saints upon their death. I think the pastor may hold the same definition as the Church in regard to a ‘saint’, but rather rejects the Church’s teaching on salvation.

Protestants have plenty of scandals of their own. Protestant scandals don’t get the same press coverage as when it happens to the Catholic Church because the Catholic Church is one big solid target whereas Protestantism is like shifting sands.

he is a total hypocrite as well you see protestants have there own saints and Saints who the look up to and are assured went to heaven they just don’t call them that but you go into one of there studies and you find pictures of luther or calvin or others all over the place.

And if they are forbidden from putting up the pictures for one unusual reason or another (some churchs actually forbid all picutres “gravin images”) then they teach about these great holy people in parish life and in there minister prep programs. they do in fact hold these people as examples of what to do. they have saints and believe in them the same as you they just disagree who the saints certainly in heaven (and in some cases on earth) ARE exactly.

just my 2 cents but it is certainly true. ask scott hann or marcis from the coming home network.

Where does Mr. Hibbs get his authority to say this? Is he magically lead to all truth solely via his literacy and possession of a bible? Where does the bible say that you must not use any other source for revelation, or where does the bible say that the bible is all? The Catholic Church has a single purpose. Calvary Chapel is divided: It must try to serve God while also condemning the Catholic Church. Which master do they serve?

Thanks everyone for your feedback. I believe God gave me the answer in scripture to refute any questioning. I as a convert I know the feeling of “sola scripture” which of course is not even biblical itself but coming from the position of a “bible thumper” I was led to Acts 19 in verse 11 where it says: God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.:thumbsup:

Peter’s shadow healed the sick through their faith!

Acts 5:12-16

12 Now many signs and wonders were done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Portico. 13 None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high honor. 14 And more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women, 15 so that they even carried out the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and pallets, that as Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on some of them. 16 The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed.

On some other thread it was said that you don’t have to pray to Mary to be Catholic.

Is it also true that you don’t have to pray to the saints?

Neither must you pray to Saints, of which Mary is the greatest - having borne our Savior in her flesh. Yet, once you realize what friends we have in heaven, it is hard to remain separate from them. If you can recite the Apostle’s and Nicene creeds honestly, grant intellectual assent to the teachings of the Church, and receive the Sacraments, it is enough. As to the Saints, you might sign up for a daily email of the lives of the Saints here. Their stories are simply awe inspiring.

Martin Luther King’s story is awe inspiring also. So the saints are great people that inspire us but Catholics don’t need to pray to the saints to be Catholic.

I see.

I’m looking at the mass prayers that mention saints and prayers to saints and their intercession. Catholics don’t have to pray those parts of the mass that reference prayers and hymns and invocations and intercessions of the saints.

So a Catholic can blank out saints and Mary from those parts in mass that refer to them and still be a Catholic.

Remember that part about granting intellectual assent to the teachings of the Church? The mass is a part of that. What we agree is that the faith is too profound for us to understand, so in lieu of understanding, we grant assent to the fact that the Church is teaching and, in the mass, practicing the truth.

The mass is the greatest prayer of the Church, and the most public prayer. I was speaking of private devotions and should have noted that.

Wait a second.

I posted this in reply to somebody else trying to explain this to me, but with no luck helping me figure it out.
I understand mass is public prayer, but you pray from your heart correct? That makes it personal prayer from the heart in common with other people praying the same prayer.

But I got confused by your post and others for and this one:

Originally Posted by po18guy
We need not have a single devotion to her - ever - to be a Catholic in good standing.

I’m reading my grandpas missal and Mary and the saints are prayed to in the mass all over the place. Your comment don’t make sense to me.’’

In fact that comments seems to be against from everything I study and read. I looked in grandpas missal and here is just one example of a quote taken from the mass book:

“Accept most Holy Trinity this offering which we are making to Thee in remembrance of the passion resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ Our Lord and in honor of blessed Mary ever virgin blessed John the baptist, the holy apostles Peter and Paul and of these and of all the saints that it may add to their honor and aid our salvation and may they deign to intercede in heaven for us who cherish their memory on earth. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen”

Therefore, I don’t have to cherish saints memory because that would be devotion to them. And I don’t have to be believe it will aid our salvation because I don’t have to pray to them for interceding in heaving for us.

That seems to conflict with the saying I don’t have to have devotion or prayers to Mary and the saints. Since these kinds of prayers are said in every mass, which is suppose to be prayed by me in common with the church, is it correct that if I omit participation in parts of mass prayers, I can still be Catholic?

One must beleive in the effiancy of prayers asked of saints and Mary.
ie. if you pray the Hail Mary that she will be praying for you.
or by asking a saint for their intersession will result in their praying on your behalf as well.

My problem is that I thought he was referring to private devotions, since that is usually what we are talking about with such subjects. I probably contributed to the comnfusion :o

Then it is true that in order to be a Catholic you must pray to Mary and the saints. Correct?

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