sola fide and works


#1

I know as catholics we and I believe that Faith alone, at least professed faith alone, is not enough to get you to heaven but you must have fruits of that faith, or works, to get you there.

Or am i misinterpreting this, must we have works of the church ie, confession, confirmation etc to get to heaven as well?

My stance is that the sacraments are ther for our spiritual nourishment. They lead us to christ. But i can’t believe that they are absolutely necessary. I mean if there was no RCC priest for 50 miles and you had no way to get there I would like to think a contrite, faithful and charitable heart would be sufficient. My grandmother in a japanese nursing home can not make it to a mass, but she is a far stronger christian than me.


#2

You are correct in how you define the sacraments. Remember however, that it is our responsibility to feed ourselves spiritually…to not do so is sinful (which is why we are obligated to Sunday Mass). However, our God is omni-benevolent, not unreasonable. It is sinful to miss Mass on Sunday in an objective sense, however, if I fall and break my ankle on the way out the door on Sunday morning, it just isn’t prudent to go anywhere but the emergency room, and by the time I get out of there I assure you it will be well past 1:00, and I will miss Mass. That is what is termed a mitigating factor that will lessen my culpability (most people would say that it lessens my culpability to zero…I would concur). Unfortunately, I think all too often as Catholics we overlook that we will be judged not on our legalistic adherence to rules, but on the condition and state of our hearts. Perhaps it is better to say that the Sacraments are “normatively neccessary”, and anyone who accepts that along with the rest of the knowledge of the Church, and chooses freely to ignore that would be putting themselves in “mortal danger”, but the Church can not make an assertation on the guilt of anyone’s soul and never has…your Salvation is between you and God, but the Church does have the teachings of Christ, and I think can do a pretty good job of letting you know when youre toeing the line.


#3

[quote=santaro75]?
My stance is that the sacraments are ther for our spiritual nourishment. They lead us to christ. But i can’t believe that they are absolutely necessary. I mean if there was no RCC priest for 50 miles and you had no way to get there I would like to think a contrite, faithful and charitable heart would be sufficient. My grandmother in a japanese nursing home can not make it to a mass, but she is a far stronger christian than me.
[/quote]

Perhaps *Sacraments in Scripture:Salvation History Made Present: *By Tim Gray would be helpful. It’s a quick read…only 96 pages.


#4

I don’t understand why some people have such a problem with good works, anyway… To hear some of the Southern Baptists around here tell it, you’d think you were supposed to avoid good works like the plague! Is it just an overblown attempt to try and tell people that good deeds are unnecessary?

Not that I even agree that good works are unnecessary. When people try and explain it to me, their logic always goes something like this: Humankind by themselves could never hope to merit God’s forgiveness on their own, and only Jesus’ sacrifice could merit it for us…so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace.

This line of reasoning is about as ridiculous as saying: “Do you think human beings were created with nutrients and water alone? Only through God’s creative action could a human life ever be brought into existence, so that means any further use of nutrients or water to sustain our life is unnecessary!”


#5

[quote=joshua_b]You are correct in how you define the sacraments. Remember however, that it is our responsibility to feed ourselves spiritually…to not do so is sinful (which is why we are obligated to Sunday Mass). However, our God is omni-benevolent, not unreasonable. It is sinful to miss Mass on Sunday in an objective sense, however, if I fall and break my ankle on the way out the door on Sunday morning, it just isn’t prudent to go anywhere but the emergency room, and by the time I get out of there I assure you it will be well past 1:00, and I will miss Mass. That is what is termed a mitigating factor that will lessen my culpability (most people would say that it lessens my culpability to zero…I would concur). Unfortunately, I think all too often as Catholics we overlook that we will be judged not on our legalistic adherence to rules, but on the condition and state of our hearts. Perhaps it is better to say that the Sacraments are “normatively neccessary”, and anyone who accepts that along with the rest of the knowledge of the Church, and chooses freely to ignore that would be putting themselves in “mortal danger”, but the Church can not make an assertation on the guilt of anyone’s soul and never has…your Salvation is between you and God, but the Church does have the teachings of Christ, and I think can do a pretty good job of letting you know when youre toeing the line.
[/quote]

very well said.


#6

[quote=exoflare]I don’t understand why some people have such a problem with good works, anyway… To hear some of the Southern Baptists around here tell it, you’d think you were supposed to avoid good works like the plague! Is it just an overblown attempt to try and tell people that good deeds are unnecessary?

Not that I even agree that good works are unnecessary. When people try and explain it to me, their logic always goes something like this: Humankind by themselves could never hope to merit God’s forgiveness on their own, and only Jesus’ sacrifice could merit it for us…so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace.

This line of reasoning is about as ridiculous as saying: “Do you think human beings were created with nutrients and water alone? Only through God’s creative action could a human life ever be brought into existence, so that means any further use of nutrients or water to sustain our life is unnecessary!”
[/quote]

very interesting analogy. I think that if there are no fruits of salvation, then there was no salvation. Once you have been touched by christ, you will never be the same.


#7

You have to remember, it was pretty much three things that started the protestant movement. 1. Indulgence abuse, 2. Real Presence and 3. Faith Alone.

On the indulgences, we all know there were abuses, get over it.

On the real presence, protestants have no argument against it, they just try to ignore it.

On faith alone, it is the last real item that separates the protestants from the Catholics. If they admit error on this, they will have to come back to the church.

Any differences besides these are a result of different interpretations after “man” decided to determine what was the truth.

As far as good works, it seems sometimes like some of the Sole Fide protestants almost reject good works. It’s kind of like their complete rejection and disrespect of Mary as important in our lives.


#8

[quote=Pjs2ejs]You have to remember, it was pretty much three things that started the protestant movement. 1. Indulgence abuse, 2. Real Presence and 3. Faith Alone.

On the indulgences, we all know there were abuses, get over it.

On the real presence, protestants have no argument against it, they just try to ignore it.

On faith alone, it is the last real item that separates the protestants from the Catholics. If they admit error on this, they will have to come back to the church.

Any differences besides these are a result of different interpretations after “man” decided to determine what was the truth.

As far as good works, it seems sometimes like some of the Sole Fide protestants almost reject good works. It’s kind of like their complete rejection and disrespect of Mary as important in our lives.
[/quote]

I do believe that faith alone saves. Faith in Jesus is what saved you. But there is evidence or fruit of your faith. And all things stem from faith in God. I think even discernment of the body and blood at the table stems from faith.

If there is no fruit than you are not showing the signs that jesus said one who is saved would show.

I am starting to look at the sacraments differently though. I am not sure that, other than baptism and communion, that they can be administered externally by a man. For me, I was confirmed in highschool in the church. But I wasn’t truly confirmed and brought home but by the holy spirit some twelve years later while sitting on a couch watching a movie.

I believe in the sacraments but i think they are administered reeally by God and are extremely personal. I think God has his own time.

But i guess eveyones faith journey and experience is different.


#9

[quote=exoflare]I don’t understand why some people have such a problem with good works, anyway… To hear some of the Southern Baptists around here tell it, you’d think you were supposed to avoid good works like the plague! Is it just an overblown attempt to try and tell people that good deeds are unnecessary?

Not that I even agree that good works are unnecessary. When people try and explain it to me, their logic always goes something like this: Humankind by themselves could never hope to merit God’s forgiveness on their own, and only Jesus’ sacrifice could merit it for us…so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace.

This line of reasoning is about as ridiculous as saying: “Do you think human beings were created with nutrients and water alone? Only through God’s creative action could a human life ever be brought into existence, so that means any further use of nutrients or water to sustain our life is unnecessary!”
[/quote]

Actually, the above second paragraph IS the teaching of the Catholic Church (minus the bit about “so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace.” Only Christ CAN merit for us salvation, we can add nothing to what He did on the Cross for us (affirmed by Trent), but we have to follow Him and “work out” our salvation, and demonstrate the fruits of faith. Faith without work IS dead, and a dead faith is incapable of saving. But we do not believe that we can work our way into Heaven. We do believe it takes work, however (to paraphrase Bugs Bunny, “Ironic, ain’t it?”)

catholic.com/library/Reward_and_Merit.asp


#10

[quote=JKirkLVNV]Actually, the above second paragraph IS the teaching of the Catholic Church (minus the bit about “so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace.” Only Christ CAN merit for us salvation, we can add nothing to what He did on the Cross for us (affirmed by Trent), but we have to follow Him and “work out” our salvation, and demonstrate the fruits of faith. Faith without work IS dead, and a dead faith is incapable of saving. But we do not believe that we can work our way into Heaven. We do believe it takes work, however (to paraphrase Bugs Bunny, “Ironic, ain’t it?”)

catholic.com/library/Reward_and_Merit.asp
[/quote]

Yeah, I realize that… the part about “so we need nothing else to stay in God’s grace” is the part that makes it false. But this is the exact difference between the original and Protestant doctrines, so that’s why I emphasized it.


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