The Protestant Either/Or Dilemma (Edited Title)


#1

We often hear form our Protestant brothers and sisters that it is eithor faith or works. Baptism or Not Baptism. They quote passages that say we are saved by faith in whitch Catholics believe but Cathoics Dont dissmiss passages that say works play a part in our salvation. In the Matt Slick Verses Tim Staples Matt uses these verses to prove that faith alone is all we need and if faith alone was all the Thief on the cross needed then then works play no role. The thief was not baptised either so he uses this as an example that baptism is not necisary as well. Tim comes back and says if he was to refuse baptism he would not be saved because scripture does say we must be baptised into Christ. And God is not bound by what we must do BAPTISE. And again Protestants say it is EITHER OR

Here is where the delima comes in. Protestants say Faith alone is all that is necesary and it is absolutly needed. Well I have to ask what about babies what about the mentally handicaped? They cant possibly have faith. Most protestants say they will go to heaven but I thought faith alone was absolutly necissary.

so I have to ask protestants why is this not an Eithor or sitiuation?
Eithor it is faith or it is not.

What do you have to say for this?

And if anyone can elaborate please do I tried to explain this as best I could but Im sure someone else can expand on what I am thinking.


#2

I am hereby making a motion that we ban generalized global phrases that begin with
"Often our Protestant brothers and sisters state [believe, teach] that . . . . "
and "Why do non-Catholics always do [say, teach, preach} . . . "

and replace those phrases with
"The Southern Baptist Convention voted today on this teaching [discipline, belief, practice] . . ."
“Martin Luther wrote in (cite source) that . . . .”
"The United Church of Christ teaches, [preaches, believes, states] that . . . "
“Pastor Billy Bob Goodoleboy made this claim on his satellite TV show that . . . .”

or something similare, don’t start out with "all or many or most Protestants believe . . " and tack on a generalized vague statement about a belief or action of a small subgroup of non-Catholics. it is absolutely worthless for the purpose of Apologetics discussion.

If you want to discuss a topic–virgin birth, papacy etc.–simply state the topic and begin the discussion. Just as we expect those posting here with a question about Catholic belief to state the actual doctrine accurately (no fair saying “Why do Catholics worship Mary?”) we must extend the same courtesey and accurately state the allegation, belief or practice we are calling into question.


#3

I agree with you. It is unfair to stereotype any religion.


#4

Dear Odell,

I understood you to have fulfilled a good part of puzzleannie’s request: you paraphrased the position of a protestant, in this case Matt Slick, and you are concentrating your remarks on a false doctrine which transcends many a protestant divide: sola fide.

I also understand your question to be: if sola fide is true, then what about those who die without the ability to have had faith. Am I correct?

It seems to me a valid question.


#5

Well, some groups could think that babies are out of luck. For those groups that don’t, well, perhaps they feel that until the baby is aware enough to sin (which, I’d imagine, coincides with being aware enough for faith), the baby does not need to be saved (it is innocent and pure). I think it will depend on the group you are dealing with.

Matt Slick has an entire website of his own (no, not interested in linking to it). He would definitely discuss infant baptism there.


#6

There is not one passage in the Bible that tells us that works are part of our salvation. We are saved UNTO good works. We do not have a faith/works = salvation gospel. We are saved by faith alone in the FINISED work of Christ on the Cross.


#7

Maybe in “another Gospel” but not in the Gospel of Jesus Christ:

What good is it , my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him?If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,” but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it? So also faith of itself, if does not have works, is dead…
…Do you want proof, you ignoramus, that faith without works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by the works. Thus the scripture wwas fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called “the friend of God.” See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone…

Or do you deny Scripture?


#8

(sounds of crickets and hoot owls…)


#9

If Jesus is to be believed, the parable of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25, indicates otherwise.


#10

So babies are out of luck?

They have no faith acording to you they are Hell bound.

Either it is Faith alone or it is NOT


#11

This is a good catch—hadn’t seen this one before.

A consequence of the Protestant (some quarters) aversion to infant baptism is it leaves the fate of children who haven’t reached the “age of reason” — whatever that may be; you won’t find it in Scripture — uncertain.

There are several ways out of this conundrum:

  1. All children go to heaven.
  2. All children go to hell.
  3. Elect children go to heaven, the rest go to hell.
  4. No clue.

Interestingly, some hedge the bet with “dedication” ceremonies and the like for babies which look suspiciously like baptism and seem to indicate “offering up” the child to God. Others will know if this has any supposed salvific effect.


#12

Joh 6:47 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.
Joh 6:48 I am the bread of life.
Joh 6:49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.
Joh 6:50 This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die.
Joh 6:51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh."
Joh 6:52 The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"
Joh 6:53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.
Joh 6:54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.
Joh 6:55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.
Joh 6:56 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.
Joh 6:57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me.
Joh 6:58 This is the bread that came down from heaven, not as the fathers ate and died. Whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”

These verses tell us that we must believe,(John 6:47) and that we must partake of His Flesh and Blood (John 6:53-56).

I don’t see faith as being alone here. We aren’t given an either or choice. In my faith I take Christ at his word and partake of His Body and Blood which act He says is necessary.


#13

And more food for thought, who had the faith when the Centurions servant was healed, the servant or the centurion ?

Who has faith when a baby is healed from a life threatening illness, the baby or the one praying for it ?

JOHN 4:49 **The ruler saith to him: Lord, come down before that my son die. 50 Jesus saith to him: Go thy way; thy son liveth. The man believed the word which Jesus said to him, and went his way. **

Who above had the faith ?


#14

DLC why are you ignoring this thred


#15

From Luther’s Smalcald Articles, Article 13:

    What I have hitherto and constantly taught concerning this I know not how to change in the least, namely, that by faith, as St. Peter says, we acquire a new and clean heart, and God will and does account us entirely righteous and holy for the sake of Christ, our Mediator. And although sin in the flesh has not yet been altogether removed or become dead, yet He will not punish or remember it.
    **And such faith, renewal, and forgiveness of sins is followed by good works**. And what there is still sinful or imperfect also in them shall not be accounted as sin or defect, even [and that, too] for Christ's sake; but the entire man, both as to his person and his works, is to be called and to be righteous and holy from pure grace and mercy, shed upon us [unfolded] and spread over us in Christ. Therefore we cannot boast of many merits and works, if they are viewed apart from grace and mercy, but as it is written, 1 Cor. 1, 31: He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord, namely, that he has a gracious God. For thus all is well. We say, besides, that **if good works do not follow, faith is false and not true.**

(This can be found on the Project Wittenberg website.) The bolding is mine.


#16

Wrong! We are saved by the grace of God.

Your faith don’t force God to save you.


#17

Rubbish. Here is two of many that could be cited:

[God] will repay everyone according to his works: eternal life to those who seek glory, honor, and immortality** through perseverance in good works**, but wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness.
Yes, affliction and distress will come upon every human being who does evil, Jew first and then Greek. But there will be glory, honor, and peace for everyone who does good, Jew first and then Greek. There is no partiality with God. (Romans 2:6-11)

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,” but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it?
So also faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead. Indeed someone might say, “You have faith and I have works.” Demonstrate your faith to me without works, and I will demonstrate my faith to you from my works.You believe that God is one. You do well. Even the demons believe that and tremble.
Do you want proof, you ignoramus, **that faith without works is useless? **Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by the works. Thus the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called “the friend of God.” **See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. **And in the same way, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she welcomed the messengers and sent them out by a different route? For just as a body without a spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead. (James 2:14-26)

Try to explain it away as you will but:

-These passages in context *are *talking about salvation.

  • Are NOT speaking about “reward” only :rolleyes:
  • Aren’t “negated” by other Bible verses (like Rom 3:28).
  • Are NOT speaking about “said faith” or some other kind of faith besides saving faith.:rolleyes: :rolleyes:

#18

How come I get no answers from Protestants?

How can you believe in Faith alone but yet people are saved apart from faith alone?


#19

The passage in James you quoted is to be understood this. It reads *Can that faith save him? * The Greek show be understood as saying "Can faith save him? The answr is no. Faith does not save. Only the objuect of ones faith can save, Christ.


#20

That passage is not taking about our salvation. It is taking about judgment of individual Gentiles at the Christ’s second return. This is not a general judgment of all men to determine their enternace into the eternal state.This jusdgment precisely describes the judgment of the world at the beginning of Christ’s millenial kingdom.

DLC


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