Although I do give this Pastor some credit for his approach, I want to make it clear that I am NOT in agreement with this Protestant Pastor's take on Catholic Teachings. He doesn't fully present the teachings in full context of the Catholic Church. Although he reads from the Catechism, he does not take the full context of the Catechism nor the full context of scripture or even provide a true Catholic definition of what sacred Tradition truly is.
If I wanted to make this article like he gave his talk about the Catholic faith, I could take parts of his Christian faith ( Calvary Chapel ) and go off in a particular direction showing it in a "not so good" light. I'll give you a brief example after the next paragraph.
Although Wikipedia is not always fully trusted by every word written on it, you can at least get a general overview look at Calvary Chapel, but feel free to do further research. Here is the statement of faith from the Church website and their ABC's of Salvation ( very protestant way of saying one is "Born Again" after following these steps and there is no mention of Baptism in the ABC's ). I'm simply pointing to Calvary Chapel because that's the Church that the Assistant Pastor in the video embedded int his article is affiliated with.
The way that I could turn the tables toward what this Pastor is saying about the Catholic Church is one of retaliation and focus on things like Calvary Chapel being founded by Chuck Smith in 1965 and finding various articles like one I found that said it's "Chuck's Church" and others outside the Church said that as well. I could focus on disagreements within the Church. I could do a deep dive into doctrine and negative articles online and make Calvary Chapel not look so go. However, although you may think that's what I just did, I'm not going to do that in this article as it directly relates to Calvary Chapel. My goal is to defend the Catholic position and share how this talk is not sharing the truth of the Catholic faith.
My point to the prior paragraph above is how frustrating it gets when people only use parts of the Catechism to attempt to make a point about the Catholic Church. It's also frustrating that people get little "t" and BIG "T" Tradition confused. But when they refer to BIG "T" Tradition they rarely ever, if ever, share the true 100% Catholic meaning of that and how Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition work together in harmony with each other.
What's the answer? Well, if someone truly cares to learn the full Catholic perspective. They have to do a deep dive into videos, audios and resources that show the Catholic Church in proper perspective and it's not by watching videos like the one embedded in this article. One cannot simply watch a video entitled "Roman Catholicism" given by a Protestant Pastor ( even if a Pastor happens to be a former Catholic ) and understand the Catholic Faith.
Here are a few quick ways to do a better dive into the Catholic faith if you are genuinely interested:
Catholic.com, Catholic Answers on YouTube, Check out The Journey Home on YouTube, Listen to EWTN ( Get the App - Audio on Demand: Called To Communion ), if you are a reader, buy books by Catholic Authors, if you want to see the Catholic response to Protestant objections buy this book USED. Buy the Catechism: Large Book or Small Book ( I own both. ), Buy a Catholic Bible ( Has 7 more books in the Old Testament ). The bottom line, you are not going to learn the truth about "Roman Catholicism" as the video further down is entitled by watching non-Catholics and even former Catholics talk about the faith. You have to do like I did and search for yourself. Then, and only then, will you know when someone speaking against the Catholic faith is not sharing their fallible opinion in full light of actual Catholic teaching.
The video below this paragraph is just over 1 hour. The two things that I like about it most are: 1) His demeanor. He's very calm in his approach. Although he misrepresents Catholic teachings, he is not shouting at the top of his lungs "Catholics are going to hell." 2) He doesn't put all Catholics in the same basket so to speak. He seems to understand that some Catholics "may actually worship" Mary, but that the Catholic Church teaches against the worship of Mary which he even mentions veneration ( honor ) and that other Catholics like myself Venerate ( honor ) Mary. I appreciate him not saying "Catholics Worship Mary" and putting all Catholics in the same box. FYI, I know a lot of Catholics and I DO NOT know a SINGLE ONE that worships Mary. However, out of 1.3 billion Catholics, there are likely some confused Catholics out there. Bottom line, Mary worship is against Catholic teachings and is a sin.
With the above stated, I'm not going to simply stop there. I want to shed some light on a few areas.
Pastor Mac states near the end of the video, "I am reading the Catechism, in what they believe in, we don’t believe on that, we believe on the scriptures and the one true living God." The reason this is important before mentioning some things he previously said is because although he was reading from the Catechism, he by no means covers all 2,865 paragraphs. The Catechism can be partially read and not appear as it seems. I'll go into that below.
Although Pastor Mac doesn't cover this particular one, here's an example of not using the Catechism properly: Just before paragraph 846 in the Catechism, it says "Outside the Church there is no salvation." That is referring to the Catholic Church. So if I simply focused on those words that "Outside the "Catholic" Church there is no salvation," I would not be shedding the full light of what it actually means.
Just below those words is paragraph 846, but I will post just 847 referring to "Outside the Church there is no salvation." Here's 847: "This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church: Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation."
If read in proper context and cross referenced with Catholic resources like Catholic Answers YouTube and Catholic.com one can understand what is meant by "Outside the Church there is no salvation." It is also helpful to know what the Catholic Church teaches about the connection with the Church to Christ.
I've just shared one example of how you can read from the Catechism and make it appear that it's saying something that it's not. But let's continue on.
Here's something else Pastor Mac says, in referring to Mary, "She is also the mediator for those of the roman catholic church as demonstrated on the rosary prayer. But we’re told in the scriptures that there is only one mediator, one, between God and men - the Lord Jesus." It's stuff like this that blows my mind about the confusion people have with Catholics.
Since Pastor Mac likes referring to the Catechism and scripture hopping, let's look at 480 "Jesus Christ is true God and true man, in the unity of his divine person; for this reason he is the one and only mediator between God and men." The Catholic Church does not teach Mary is a mediator. So he misleads his listeners. Although he may not be doing it on purpose, he still misleads his listeners by the statement he made: "She is also the mediator for those of the roman catholic church." Pastor, that's WRONG, WRONG AND WRONG and sadly it's not the only thing wrong with most of what he says in the video.
Catholics do believe that Mary is alive in heaven and that Saints are alive in heaven. Any Christian who believes someone is alive in heaven also should believe those in heave are perfected. In other words, they are far more righteous than those of us hear on earth. James 5:16 says "...The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective." Well if I can ask others hear on earth who definitely are not fully perfected but may try to live a righteous life through Christ to pray for me, I'm sure going to say to Mary, "Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death." I'm also going to ask Mary and the Saints to pray for me just like I would ask those on earth to pray for me. The proper terminology is INTERCESSOR. Most Christians have heard of intercessory prayer. Come on Pastor, please get it right. Mary intercedes for us.
Near the beginning, Pastor Mac says, "I just want to clear the air that Catholics do not worship the same, in fact, many people that call themselves Catholics are not Catholics at all based on how they worship and what they do or they can be considered bad Catholics but pretty good Christians." I don't what he says here not do I appreciate the implications. I take this comment kind of like when a non-Catholic might say, "some Catholics are saved" - "some Catholics will make it to heaven."
The reality of it is that Catholics do worship one primary way with the Eucharist being the pinnacle of the Mass. That's what makes the Catholic faith so special to a convert like me. If a Catholic is not embracing the faith properly and would be considered a "bad Catholic" as he says then they are also likely actually "not a pretty good Christian."
I know a lot and I mean a lot of Catholics who worship the true Catholic way and are not only "pretty good Christians" but actually "pretty great Christians." What's interesting is that they are not only "pretty great Christians" but they are humble about it. I will actually see many of them tomorrow morning at the Catholic Men's group that I am a part of. True Catholics and True men of God despite a comment like Pastor Mac made.
Going back to "I am reading the Catechism, in what they believe in, we don’t believe on that, we believe on the scriptures and the one true living God."
I'm sure out of the 2,865 paragraphs in the Catechism that there is a lot of it that Pastor Mac actually believes like maybe paragraph 1989 "The first work of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conversion, effecting justification in accordance with Jesus' proclamation at the beginning of the Gospel: "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high. "Justification is not only the remission of sins, but also the sanctification and renewal of the interior man."
Yes, Catholic teaching says that we are moved by Grace. Yes, we are saved by Grace through faith but not faith alone because "faith alone" is not actually Biblical since the only time the word faith alone is used is in James 2:24 "You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone." Catholics know that our works don't save us. There is NOTHING we can do to earn our Salvation. However, our life should reflect "...faith working through love" as Galatians 5:6 says.
What about maybe paragraph 432 "The name "Jesus" signifies that the very name of God is present in the person of his Son, made man for the universal and definitive redemption from sins. It is the divine name that alone brings salvation, and henceforth all can invoke his name, for Jesus united himself to all men through his Incarnation, so that "there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved."
So are paragraph 432 and 1989 fully posted above areas that Pastor Mac might agree with? I don't know for sure but to say from his perspective "we believe on the scriptures and the one true living God" and to make that sound like Catholics don't believe in scripture and the ONE true living God is again misleading.
It amazes me how many people, even some prior Catholics, even some prior Priests, do not seem to truly understand the Catholic faith. It doesn't take the amount of time that I have put in to understand Catholicism, but one cannot spend most of their time watching videos like the one in this article and expect to properly understand Catholic teachings.
It's time for action.
Jesus Christ is the Son of God, born of a Virgin, died on the Cross of Calvary and shed His blood for the sins of the world. He rose again on the 3rd day and is seated at the right hand of God the father. Jesus said in John 14:6 "“I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me."
Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you turned from sin and turned to Him? Christ loves you. His message is not a message of hate. It's a message of Love. But hell is real for those who reject Christ.
I Timothy 2:3-4 "....it is acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth." Yes, God desires ALL MEN to be SAVED. However, God gives us free will and we each have to decide if we will accept God's free gift of Salvation through his Son Jesus Christ or reject Christ."
If you are a Catholic Christian, live the Catholic faith to the fullest. Put Christ truly first in your life. Don't be a box checker. It's more to having a relationship with Christ than showing up one hour per week to Church. I'm not saying that's you because I know a lot of Catholics who actively live their faith and have a relationship with Jesus Christ.
If you are "not" a Catholic Christian, I encourage you to consider the Catholic Christian faith. Start by visiting a local Catholic Church, reach out to the parish ( church ) office, find a Catholic who lives their faith, visit Catholic.com and listen to Called To Communion on EWTN. All of these ways are a great way to get started.
If you don't profess to be a Christian, repent of your sins, turn to Christ as Savior and see the paragraph above. The reality is that Christ knows your heart and knows if you are truly seeking Him. Although Hell is real, God is not out with the goal of sending you there. It's up to you. It doesn't take a bunch of fancy words to begin the journey. The key is to begin the journey with a sincere desire to let Christ be KING OF YOUR LIFE.
Please use the contact form if you'd like to reach out to me.