Sin Of Presumption


#1

Hello,
This is my first time posting in here. I am a Protestant and former Catholic. I have been talking with a Catholic friend of mine recently and he says that Catholics can not know that if they die they will go to heaven, and that in fact it is a sin to say you know.- the sin of presumption which I think is a mortal sin in the Catholic mind?

I find this hard to swallow. So in the Catholic mind set no one ever knows when they die if they will go to heaven? Is that correct or am I misunderstanding?

If that is the case then what do we do with Paul’s words at the end of his life writing to Timoth.
2[size=2] Tim 4:7-8. (New American Catholic Bible) "I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me, which the Lord, the just judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but to all who have longed for his appearance. "
No doubt he knew where he was going… but not only him…but all who have longed for His appearance.

And what about 1John 5:13
I write these things to you so that you mayknow that you have eternal life, you who believe in the name of the Son of God.

Now why would John say you may know…if indeed you couldn’t?

Maybe I am misunderstanding Catholic teaching on this. So what do you guys make of this?
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#2

Here’s a link that can explain it better than I could:

catholic.com/library/Assurance_of_Salvation.asp


#3

Notice he said I have kept the faith. Some people use their statement of faith in Jesus to presume on Gods mercy and do what they want. A perfect example is a man that I know That has left his wife, participates in orgies and made his daughter get a 6 month abortion 2 years ago. I talked to him and told him I was worried about his eternal destination if a bomb dropped,because he was not repentant for any of it. He looked at me and said,“me and God have that worked out, I was saved a long time ago,I am taken care of”.That is presumptuous.God Bless:blessyou:


#4

Lisa,
I too would worry about him. I would say he shows no signs of being of the “sheep”. That is sad that so many fail to understand that if He is Saviour… He is also Lord. The two can not be pulled apart. I believe that it is possible to turn away and lose salvation. Or maybe he never was of the sheep?

I was confused as to whether Catholics could know currently that they are going to heaven. John says that we can know… at least in the present. That is what I was wondering about. So if I understand correctly now the official teaching of the Catholic Church is that you can know persently …but to say that you know in the future is wrong… as is sinning gravely and saying that you are saved? Is that pretty much it?


#5

[quote=Josiah1234]Lisa,
I too would worry about him. I would say he shows no signs of being of the “sheep”. That is sad that so many fail to understand that if He is Saviour… He is also Lord. The two can not be pulled apart. I believe that it is possible to turn away and lose salvation. Or maybe he never was of the sheep?

I was confused as to whether Catholics could know currently that they are going to heaven. John says that we can know… at least in the present. That is what I was wondering about. So if I understand correctly now the official teaching of the Catholic Church is that you can know persently …but to say that you know in the future is wrong… as is sinning gravely and saying that you are saved? Is that pretty much it?
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As Catholics we know that Jesus is our Savior and we must continue to accept his grace and do his will and be humble.Our hope is in Jesus,we can’t save ourselves,we strive to do Gods will. In that we know God is just and merciful. I guess your asking if we die in a state of grace will we go to heaven, yes. God Bless


#6

Catholics can and do have a moral assurance of thier salvation, i.e., they know if they are in a state of grace (if they do not have unrepented mortal sins - sins of grave matter with full knowledge and full consent - on their souls). If I as a catholic die in a state of grace, I know I will see God in heaven.

However, we do not have an absolute, infallible assurance of our salvation. For St. Paul told the Corinthians (1 Cor. 10:12), “Therefore whoever thinks he is standing secure should take care not to fall.” When St. Paul wrote to Timothy he was probably near the end of his life. Notice he said that he had competed well and finished the race and therefore he was sure. Catholics do believe perserverance to the end is required and we must finish the race.

For the Catholic St. Paul sums it up in 1 Cor. 4:4-5 "I am not conscious of anything against me, but I do not thereby stand acquitted; the one who judges me is the Lord. Therefore do not make any judgement before the appointed time, until the Lord comes, for he will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will manifest the motives of our hearts, and then everyone will receive praise from God.

Recommended reading:

catholic.com/library/Assurance_of_Salvation.asp


#7

[quote=germys9]Catholics can and do have a moral assurance of thier salvation, i.e., they know if they are in a state of grace (if they do not have unrepented mortal sins - sins of grave matter with full knowledge and full consent - on their souls). If I as a catholic die in a state of grace, I know I will see God in heaven.

However, we do not have an absolute, infallible assurance of our salvation. For St. Paul told the Corinthians (1 Cor. 10:12), “Therefore whoever thinks he is standing secure should take care not to fall.” When St. Paul wrote to Timothy he was probably near the end of his life. Notice he said that he had competed well and finished the race and therefore he was sure. Catholics do believe perserverance to the end is required and we must finish the race.

For the Catholic St. Paul sums it up in 1 Cor. 4:4-5 "I am not conscious of anything against me, but I do not thereby stand acquitted; the one who judges me is the Lord. Therefore do not make any judgement before the appointed time, until the Lord comes, for he will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will manifest the motives of our hearts, and then everyone will receive praise from God.

Recommended reading:

catholic.com/library/Assurance_of_Salvation.asp
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Excellent answer.I Think you did a wonderful job in this explaination.:slight_smile: God Bless


#8

It is easy to “prove” the once saved always saved belief if you only wrench a few verses out of context. To know what the Scriptures really say about something, you have to take what they teach as a whole. Here are a few that refute your friend’s interpretation:

Rom. 2:6-10, 13 - God will judge every man according to his works. Our salvation depends on how we cooperate with God’s grace.

2 Cor. 5:10 - at the judgment Seat of Christ, we are judged according to what we have done in the body, not how much faith we had.

2 Cor. 9:6 – Paul says that he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully, in connection with God’s judgment.

2 Cor. 11:15 - our end will correspond to our deeds. Our works are necessary to both our justification and salvation.

Gal. 6:7-9 – whatever a man sows, he will reap. Paul warns the Galatians not to grow weary in doing good works, for in due season they will reap (the rewards of eternal life).

Eph. 6:8 – whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same again from the Lord.

Col. 3:24-25 - we will receive due payment according to what we have done. Even so, Catholics recognize that such payment is a free unmerited gift from God borne from His boundless mercy.

Tons more can be found at:
scripturecatholic.com/salvation.html#salvation-IV


#9

The sin of the presumption of mercy is the same thing as the unforgivable sin. A man can make a decision of the will to commit a mortal sin, and then presume that he has nothing to worry about because God is going to be merciful and forgive him in spite of the fact that he is unrepentant for his sin. That person is mistaken, because God will not forgive unrepentant mortal sin. One cannot both choose to commit mortal sin and also be repentant of mortal sin at the same time.

The antinomian version of OSAS is a deadly heresy because it teaches that a “saved” man can commit any sin he feels like committing with the assurance that he will enter heaven.


#10

Even if you know that afterwards you are going to be sorry for doing it but you go ahead and do it anyway knowing that it will be forgiven, you commit the sin of presumption which needs to be confessed.


#11

[quote=Josiah1234]Hello,
This is my first post on here. I was prompted to post as I am a Protestant (former Catholic) who has been talking with a Catholic friend of mine. Protestants believe that one can know that they are saved and he says that Catholics don’t know. In fact I have read that it is supposed to be a sin (sin of presumption) to even say that you know you are going to heaven.

I don’t want to get into a big arguement about this…but he seems to claim that even Paul did not know that he was going to heaven. That sounds way off in light of scriptures that I read.
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Hi Josiash. No doubt the passage your friend was referring to was Philippians 2:12.

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

I don’t know about you, but as a Catholic, I fully intend to follow Paul’s advice here.

Peace and God bless! :slight_smile:

Eric


#12

Why is it important to know that one is going to Heaven?


#13

[quote=mercygate]Why is it important to know that one is going to Heaven?
[/quote]

Dear mercygate,

Good question. Hmmm, let me guess. Perhaps it’s important because living a life that is pleasing to Christ is only worthwhile if one believes one will be rewarded for it? Maybe it is because we wish to engage in imperfection and sin, but only as long as we stay below the “eternal punishment” threshold at any given moment? Perhaps it’s to satisfy our carnal need to judge ourselves along with others, contrary to what Jesus told us to do?

I guess I don’t really know for sure, but I’d lay bets that most of us find it easier to explain oneself and one’s lifestyle if one can claim that we were legitimately bribed or threatened. That way we can avoid responsibility for living as a Christian as a personal choice and excuse ourselves using the worldly concept that we had to make that choice because of the fear of punishment and the promise of a reward.

Why do I live as a Christian? To please God. Why do I want to please God? Well, uh, because He’ll hurt me if I don’t, right? Am I certain? No, but I don’t want to take the chance.

Alan


#14

Alan,

Is the above statement your own personal view?


#15

[quote=Ahimsa]Alan,

Is the above statement your own personal view?
[/quote]

Dear Ahimsa,

The above view was one I had to purge from myself, but one that I believe is extremely prevalent.

When I was little I did things my parents wanted me to just because they wanted me to do them. It wasn’t until I got into school and otherwise in society that I ran, oblivious, into the mindset that people must be threatened or bribed to do right. I think this has polluted our whole outlook toward shaping the consciences of children, as we demonstrate to them with multiple, disparate disciplinary systems that disciplinary systems, as we know them, are about getting caught and not what is in your heart. By the time kids get through grade school they know very well that there is a gap between what is touted as “right” and between what goes in any given system.

I typically drive the speed limit or slightly less, rather than a few over, not because I think I’m going to get caught but because I think that’s how I should behave to give order to this society. I wish to live as a Christian because I believe that is the optimal way for human beings to behave to make this a better world, both for myself and others. My beliefs and ideas about the afterlife change, but my commitment to being the most loving, forgiving, and unassuming person I can be does not.

I don’t worry about whether I’m going to heaven or hell. It’s an interesting discussion, but how am I to know unless I presume to judge? I’m much more interested in learning how I can live each day with just a little more love, a little more patience, and a little more faith than the day before, and try to gain insight at every opportunity. That’s how I’ve chosen to play this game of life, at least for now. I don’t really know how God is going to judge me, and I reject the notion that my everlasting fate oscillates between heaven or hell on a regular basis based on some heavenly Santa Claus keeping score of whether I’m naughtly or nice at any given moment. If that’s the case then my life is little more than a game of eternal Russian Roulette.

If I end up in hell then I guess I played the game wrong.

Alan


#16

[quote=AlanFromWichita]Dear mercygate,

Perhaps it’s to satisfy our carnal need to judge ourselves along with others, contrary to what Jesus told us to do?

Why do I live as a Christian? To please God. Why do I want to please God? Well, uh, because He’ll hurt me if I don’t, right? Am I certain? No, but I don’t want to take the chance.

Alan
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:rotfl: Maybe I’d better stop laughing. Your caricature here comes pretty close to what some people actually believe – as is evidenced by Ahimsa’s asking whether that is your personal belief.


#17

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