"The gates of hell shall not prevail"


#1

How do we know that the gates of hell have not prevailed?

Just because the Church has a following does not mean the gates have not prevailed. Several other Churches that are in error have not gone away and to them, the gates of hell have not prevailed either.

So how do we know?


#2

According to the Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary:

I will build my Church, and that so firmly, as not to suffer the gates (i.e. the powers) of hell to prevail against its foundation; because if they overturn its foundation, (i.e. thee and thy successors) they will overturn also the Church that rests upon it. Christ therefore here promises to Peter, that he and his successors should be to the end, as long as the Church should last, its supreme pastors and princes. (Tirinus)

The citation refers to apostolic succession upon which the Church is founded. In this the Church has not failed and cannot fail, as it is Christ’s own promise. No power on earth or of diabolical origin has been able to destroy Christ’s Church.

As for other ecclesial Christian bodies, they have no such promise, but because of baptism, they are imperfectly joined to the Church. The hope is that they will be fully reunited to the universal Church founded on Peter and the Apostles.

And we have to remember that the end of time has not yet come. We shall not see the complete fulfillment of this promise until Christ comes again, but we have no reason to doubt it.


#3

Because Jesus said they would not.

Just because the Church has a following does not mean the gates have not prevailed. Several other Churches that are in error have not gone away and to them, the gates of hell have not prevailed either.

Not yet.

The Catholic Church is not just another church. Other “churches” have come and gone, but the gates of hell have not and will not prevail against the Church that Christ himself established. We have His word on it.


#4

This question came to mind after posting in another thread regarding Old Testament violence. It seems like if God commanded such killings and atrocious, sinful acts that He isntthat merciful after all, or… If Moses and the people had made up their own laws and used “God told us to do this” to justify their own brutality, it would seem in a way that the gates of hell prevailed long, long ago.


#5

Islam and Hinduism have huge followings and they are not joined to our Church at all. To them, the gates of hell have not prevailed either.

Or is Christs promise in regards to guarding the Church from heresy? However, I still cant see how Christ has promised to keep the Church pure in understanding faith and morals infallibly when from the very beginning it almost seemed like morality was non existent.


#6

That’s probably the topic for another thread-- either the one you were one on, or the 100 bazillion threads (some very recent) that have discussed this topic.

If Moses and the people had made up their own laws and used “God told us to do this” to justify their own brutality, it would seem in a way that the gates of hell prevailed long, long ago.

The trouble here is that you are starting from an unproven premise: that the Jews wrote the Bible in a way to justify their own brutality by blaming it on God. There simply is no way to prove that or to state it conclusively. It’s a long stretch to conclude that the gates of hell have prevailed against the Church based on unsound speculation about the motives of the Old Testament writers…


#7

How big a following any religion has says nothing about whether or not it will defeat evil or give to their adherents what they need most–eternal life.

Or is Christs promise in regards to guarding the Church from heresy? However, I still cant see how Christ has promised to keep the Church pure in understanding faith and morals infallibly when from the very beginning it almost seemed like morality was non existent.

Morality non-existent? Because of OT passages you simply don’t understand? Hardly. :slight_smile:

In OT times, and indeed in our own times, men will use violence to get what they want. Sometimes that means we must take up arms and battle them so they cannot rule the world. Jesus was not a pacifist and neither is God. We are to live in peace with all men, but if they will not have it, but will try to enslave us or take rights from us by force we have the right and even the duty to fight them. This is the definition of a just war–one fought for the right reasons.


#8

Now something like a just war I can understand easily, but commanding to kill enemies, take their wives as their own, and smash their infants against the rocks hardly seems like a just war. Please tell me this excerpt that I am thinking of is not the real excerpt (i will search for it later, might be somewhere in Deuteronomy).


#9

Well what do you think of Noah’s flood?

God drowned everyone?

He is the creator he can take back what he creates and sustains


#10

In the very beginning morality was non existent. To form gold you start with a blows of a mallet and end with taps. It took God’s forming hand to bring Israel to the point where they could even accept Christ. He established the new Israel with the fullness of Divine Revelation and promised that it would preserve to the end.

I note that the fact that the Church is totally intact as it was in the first century, (something which sounds almost minor when stated so ordinarily) is diamond-hard proof of Christ’s promise. Especially when you consider that those who split from the Church have a not-so-uncommon trait of splitting into tens, hundreds, thousands and tens of thousands of sects of the original heresy. The fact that the Church is still standing straight is totally against human nature and must therefore be divine.


#11

I think that was perfectly fine. God did it Himself, He didnt ask Noah to drown everyone in a river with his own hands.


#12

I agree, but if the gates of hell had already corrupted the Jewish people in the OT with their brutal laws, and we are just perpetuating the traditions and going through the motions, that doesnt sound nearly as divine.

Hinduism has also remained intact but that doesnt prove anything other than them passing along tradition.


#13

That was God’s judgment against them for their idol worship which included sacrificing their own children to their gods. God ordered their destruction to wipe out their foul practices and to make it clear to Israel, in no uncertain terms, that they must not do the same. However, even Israel fell into the abominable habits of their pagan neighbors, which is what God wanted to prevent by destroying those pagans who had taken over the lands God had given to Israel.

In order to understand God’s commands to destroy various nations you need to know the circumstances and the culture at the time. Without the proper historical and theological context God’s actions seem arbitrary and cruel, but they weren’t. All God’s actions/commands are just and right.

What are we as Christians to learn from these OT stories? That we are to have no idols before God and that we are to smashed the least inclination to sin–to not let sin take root in our lives.


#14

Hello,

Great question.

Here is another GATE to search out.

Jesus talked about the ‘Strait Gate.’

Happy adventure,


#15

The pagans that the Israelites were told to wipe out were practicing things like temple prostitution, and throwing their babies in fire to appease their pagan gods. The Israelites were also told to not intermarry with them, and many disobeyed and things happened that were not so good.

The Lord was preparing the monotheistic Israelite nation with the Ten Commandments, and laws that set them apart from other nations, because the Incarnation of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, our Lord Jesus Christ was to be born of their race.


#16

=TheHolyGhost;11336521]How do we know that the gates of hell have not prevailed?

Just because the Church has a following does not mean the gates have not prevailed. Several other Churches that are in error have not gone away and to them, the gates of hell have not prevailed either.

So how do we know?

BECAUSE GOD; GOOD AND PERFECT CANNOT LIE! THAT’S HOW:thumbsup:


#17

What is the difference?

Just the way it sounds?


#18

Couple of things.

God clearly calls the people of Israel his Chosen People. He delivers them from Egypt, and performs countless miracles aiding them. He also, provided the law and moral law which is the foundation of our laws today.

The promise of the gates of hell not prevailing was made by Christ in reference to his church…the Catholic Church.

It really does not have much to do with the ancient Hebrews.

The proof is that the Catholic Church has the historical pedigree linking us to this decree by Christ and we still exist today.

Look at protestantism. Which denominations have maintained the moral truths like the Catholic Church has?

100 years ago, all of protestantism was oppossed to abortion, contraception divorce and remarriage and homosexual unions.

Today???

Pretty much just Catholicism and a few independent conservative protestant sects…

Catholicism is constant in its teaching and it has stood strong. Often called backwards and behind the times, it is because we are not trendy, we declare the truth that was once and for all delivered to the Saints.

And we will know this is true when Christ returns and his church is still here.


#19

Their laws were brutal, but just (with the exception of the overbearing interpretations that the pharisees forced upon people in Jesus’ time, out of a sense of power). But the main point here is that Jesus didn’t give His promise to Moses, He gave it to Peter.

Thou art Peter (Cephas, “rock”), and upon this rock I build My Church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. - Matt 16:18

It was this Church that Christ built and promised would continue to the end of the world. An incredible gift - only God could give. Israel was being formed for the comming of Christ, the New Israel had now been formed, never to be deformed.

Just by the way, seeing as you mentioned it, the Hindus exhibit the very same behavior as every other religion and just like non-Catholic Christians, they have many, many denominations and sects and no central authority. The only religion in the world, and even the only organisation that has ever been formed that is immune to this, is the Catholic Church.

See:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_denominations

Edit:
And also: catholic.com/tracts/origins-of-peter-as-pope


#20

StraitGateSheep, this one is easy. The setting for this pericope is Caesarea Phillipi, which is at the base of Mount Hermon. There was a temple complex to Greek and Roman gods there, centered on a pre-Chrtistian site of sacrifice. The focal point was a cave that contained a waterfall. From its mouth, the sound of the falling water reverberating in the cave sounded like tormented souls. Thus the local name for it was the Gates of Hell. In the fourth century an earthquake changed the water flow and so the sound is no longer present.


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