Throughout the centuries of Christian church history, many foundational Biblical truths have been lost or have been completely trampled under foot. Many of today's church teachings foster an incorrect view of who God is and have slandered His true character. Today's modern Christian church would sadden and anger Jesus' disciples if they lived today... although, the Bible does warn that there would be a falling away from sound doctrine before the return of Jesus and this has happened.
The Bible mentions this falling away from sound Biblical doctrine in 2 Thessalonians 2 and makes reference to a man of sin which will come onto the scene of human history before the return of Jesus. This man of sin also has the title of "the son of perdition".
There are only two places in scripture where "the son of perdition" is mentioned... One is mentioned in 2 Thessalonians 2, which refers to the Antichrist and the other in John 17:12 which is Judas
(2 Thessalonians 2:1) Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
(2 Thessalonians 2:2) That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
(2 Thessalonians 2:3) Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
(2 Thessalonians 2:4) Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
... and in John 17:12 there is another mention of "the son of perdition" which refers to Judas the disciple of Jesus.
(John 17:12) While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
Only two characters in the whole Bible are referred to as "the son of perdition"... The disciple Judas - (John 17:12), and the Antichrist - (2 Thessalonians 2:3) - both worked from within the inner circle of Christ's body of believers and betrayed Christ.
Topics in this document are meant to help shed light on restored Biblical truths that God has brought back into view for His End Time, Last Day people. Many beliefs about the character of God are wrong. The people of God, in the Last Days, will exonerate and bring to the forefront, God's true character which has been lost and damaged for centuries. Many lost Biblical truths resurfaced during the Protestant Reformation, and more truths have been rediscovered over the last few centuries.
Because some Biblical truth may hit close to home, text in this document may seem insensitive and offensive to some since we tend to protect teachings, doctrines and beliefs of tradition we hold as truth. I do not wish to offend anyone, but simply wish to show God's restored truth... and the Bible will be my plumb line for doing so.
You owe it to yourself to do your own research to determine whether what is written in the topics below, are truths or not. Do not let any man, or woman, social movement, church or organization do your thinking for you... Let God's "Road Map", the Bible, lead you into His truth
In the following topics, we will study numerous subjects that most of the Christian church have forgotten, have never seen before or are errant beliefs that have been passed down through church teachings. It's time to remove error from Christ's church and to rectify the untrue and damaged character of God. We will do this by allowing God's word, the Bible, to teach truth.
Important! There will be numerous references to the Roman Catholic Church made during the course of this document. I need to make this perfectly clear that I am not speaking against the members of the Roman Catholic Church. There have been and are many Christ centered, loving Christians in the Catholic church.
On a Final Note: This document is a collection of three important topics and can be a long read... If necessary, you may wish to break it up into several reading sessions.
The information found in this document will vindicate and reveal the "true" character of God.
Ok, I'm finished with my warnings... and here are the topics...
---- "God has Many Names"
---- Biblical truths restored since the Dark Ages (i.e. Middle Ages).
---- The Biblical Truth about Hell, "For Ever", Eternal Destruction, and Eternal Torment
---- Also, Another Name of God is Eternal Fire
Most people know the name of God as Jehovah, YHVH, YHWH, Yahweh, LORD, "The Almighty", Jesus and in the Qur’an, Jesus is also known as Isa... But in Exodus 33 and Exodus 34, God has expressed a facet of His name in a manner that most have not recognized. So what is this Important lost name of God? Let's let God tell us through His Holy Word...
Remember when Moses went up to Mount Sinai? This was when God gave Moses the 10 Commandments. During this time of fellowship with God, Moses asked God a very interesting question. Moses pleaded with God to show him His Glory, and look what God revealed to Moses.
|(Exodus 33:18) And he said, I beseech thee, shew me thy glory.
(Exodus 33:19) And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy.
(Exodus 33:20) And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.
(Exodus 33:21) And the LORD said, Behold, there is a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock:
(Exodus 33:22) And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by:
(Exodus 33:23) And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.
(Exodus 34:5) And the LORD descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD.
(Exodus 34:6) And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,
(Exodus 34:7) Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.
(Exodus 34:12) Take heed to thyself, lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land whither thou goest, lest it be for a snare in the midst of thee:
(Exodus 34:13) But ye shall destroy their altars, break their images, and cut down their groves:
(Exodus 34:14) For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:
(Exodus 34:15) Lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they go a whoring after their gods, and do sacrifice unto their gods, and one call thee, and thou eat of his sacrifice;
God revealed many facets of His Glory to Moses. At first glance, all we see are attributes of God's glory, and His glory is made up of His mercy, His graciousness, His longsuffering and His abundance in goodness and truth. These are all character traits.
... But also notice that God proclaimed His Name and what He revealed to Moses is that God's Name and God's Glory are synonymous with the Character of God. A facet of God's Name and Glory is His Character.
Another name and character trait of God that He proclaims is that His name is Jealous. God is a jealous God and wants you to only love Him and not other FALSE gods. So God proclaims His name as Jealous. ( See Exodus 34:14)
Since we can see that God's Name is His Glory and Character, where else can we find God's Character and His Name? We can see God's character in His 10 Commandments. A question I've asked before... Would you allow or feel safe allowing a loved one around someone who has the character traits found in the 10 Commandments?
Interestingly, the 10 Commandments not only reflect God's Character, which is synonymous with His Name and Glory, but the 10 Commandments are also the foundation of which protect His creation. This is why Satan Hates the Law of God. God's 10 Commandments encompasses much more than just a list of Dos and Don'ts, they reflect many facets of God's true character which is the heart of who God is. This is the reason why Satan Hates and wants to destroy the Law of God. Satan does not want you to see the true character of God and he has been very successful in hiding God's true character from God's creation and only wants to destroy the heart of God which is His Law. I'll speak more about this later.
Remember, Satan never works alone or in the open, but rather through the workings of Man. After all, Mankind would reject Satan if they saw who he really was. This is why Satan works "secretly" in the background of the Human race through Men, Women, Governments or Religious organizations.
Here is an interesting note about the Name of God... Notice where God's Name will reside in His people when the New Heavens and New Earth have been created after Earth's History is over... This implies that God's children will have the Character of God which is His Name. God's character will be in the hearts and minds of His children. They will reflect the character of God.
Remember, the Law is God's Ten Commandments...
(Hebrews 8:10) For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:
(Hebrews 10:16) This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;
|(Revelation 21:1) And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
(Revelation 21:2) And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
|(Revelation 22:3) And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him:
(Revelation 22:4) And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. (i.e. in our minds)
We need God's Name or character now, so that we will be able to stand firm during the turmoil about to come upon this Earth. This is why God is allowing us to rediscover lost Biblical truths now. He wants to prepare us for Christ's soon return.
The Seal of God
Please bear with me for one moment and let me take you on a quick little detour. Does the above reference to the Name of God found in their foreheads sound anything like another reference to the forehead found in the book of Revelation? It sure does. In Revelation 14:9,10 it references the Mark of the Beast which is received in the forehead or in his hand.
(Revelation 14:9) And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, (Revelation 14:10) The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
Now, even if you do not know what the Mark of the Beast is referenced in Revelation, you do not need to worry if you have the Seal of God. You cannot have both, you can only have one. So we should seek to understand the Seal or Mark of God. So what is a seal or mark and what is the Seal of God?
|Strong's Hebrew and Greek Dictionary
From G4973; to stamp (with a signet or private mark) for security or preservation (literally or figuratively); by implication to keep secret, to attest: - (set a, set to) seal up, stop..
Probably strengthened from G5420; a signet (as fencing in or protecting from misappropriation); by implication the stamp impressed (as a mark of privacy, or genuineness), literally or figuratively: - seal.
Now God places His personal seal in a very interesting place ... in His Law, The Ten Commandments. Remember, this is the main reason why Satan hates the Law of God... It contains many facets of God's character but it also contains God's Seal of authority.
Just as a president, king or diplomat of a nation has a seal, so does God. An official seal has three elements... A person's name, their title or office and the territory over which they have rule.
So the seal of the president of the United States looks like this...
|Name: Barack Obama
Title or Office: President
Area or Territory of rule: The United States of America
Now let's look at God's seal which can be found in the middle of His Law, The Ten Commandments. God's seal is found in the 4th commandment, which interestingly starts with the word, Remember... It looks like God knew we would forget. I will mark in Red His Name and Title... and will mark in Blue, God's territory.
| Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath
day, to keep it holy. 9: Six days shalt thou labor, and do
all thy work; 10: but the seventh day is a sabbath unto Jehovah
thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy
son, nor thy daughter, thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant,
nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 11: for in six days Jehovah made heaven and earth, the sea,
and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore Jehovah blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it..
So the seal of God looks like this...
|Name: Jehovah - or God
Title or Office: Jehovah Made i.e. Creator
Area or Territory of rule: Heaven, Earth and Sea and ALL that are in them.
God's Mark and Sign of Authority is our observance and worship of Him on His declared day of worship, which is the Sabbath, or Saturday. God has declared this in His 4th Commandment.
|(Exodus 31:16) Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.
Webster's New World Dictionary: Perpetual
1) lasting or enduring forever or for an indefinitely long time; eternal; permanent 2) continuing indefinitely without interruption; unceasing; constant
(Ezekiel 32:17) It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.
God, the creator of the universe, put His Mark and Seal in the heart of His Ten Commandments to show that He, God alone, wrote them and not man.
The Sabbath, which is God's MARK of authority, shows He has authority over Mankind and the universe..
Now before you misunderstand that the scripture in Ezekiel 32:17 above only applies to the Jewish people, look at what is said in Galatians 3:26-29 below... If we are in Christ, we are heirs according to the promise given to Abraham... Just like the Jewish Israelites. We are spiritual Jews.
| (Galatians 3:26) For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
(Galatians 3:27) For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
(Galatians 3:28) There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. .
(Galatians 3:29) And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
We must also remember that the Sabbath was established at Creation, many centuries before the Jewish nation had ever formed. So we cannot say that the Sabbath is just for the Jews. It has always been the day that God set aside for His day of worship.
To finish this detour, remember this... The name and seal of God will be very significant in the last days. For more information about what the Mark of the Beast truly is and God's Final message to Mankind just before the Second Coming of Jesus, click on the following link...
OK, now that we understand what the hidden Name of God is... His Character... Let's try an experiment and substitute the word Character in place of Name in the following scriptures and see if it makes sense...
|(Revelation 2:13) I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth.|
|(Revelation 3:8) I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.
|(Revelation 13:1) And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
|(Revelation 13:6) And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
|(Revelation 14:1) And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads.|
|(Revelation 16:9) And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.|
During a time in Human history known as the Dark Ages, 538A.D. to 1798A.D., the Roman Catholic papacy attacked and trampled upon the Character of God... His Law. Remember the 10 Commandments reflects God's Character, His Name, His Government and God's Glory.. and God's Seal and Mark of Authority. So how has the papacy attacked God's Character, His Law?
The Roman Catholic papacy undertook the prerogatives of God and changed God's 10 Commandments law by removing the 2nd Commandment from the Roman Catholic Church Catechism. The Catholic Catechism is the book used to teach new Catholic converts doctrines and beliefs of the Roman Catholic church. The papacy also split the 10th Commandment into two commandments. They split the 10th commandment in order to reflect the correct number of commandments. They also changed God's holy day of worship from Saturday to Sunday.
Well so what you may say to yourself. I'm not Catholic, this doesn't affect me. Oh, but it does affect you as you will see as you read on and study End Time Bible prophecy... During the Protestant reformation, Protestant churches brought along many Catholic errant doctrines along with many pagan traditions and beliefs when they left the Roman Catholic mother church.
The Roman Catholic papacy embraced many pagan and man-made doctrines which were later intertwined with Catholic church doctrines. Because of this, many doctrines and beliefs found in both Catholic and Protestant churches today, are contrary to truths found in God's Holy Scripture. Bible truth started being lost through Catholic church practices.
Modern day Christianity has Apostatized from Bible Truth.
In the 2nd Commandment, which was removed from the Catechism, God forbids the making and worshipping of idols.
|(Exodus 20:4) Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
(Exodus 20:5) Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them, for I Jehovah thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, upon the third and upon the fourth generation of them that hate me,
(Exodus 20:6) and showing loving kindness unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.
As I've mentioned before, please do not think that I am bashing my Catholic brothers and sisters in Christ, I am not. In fact my own sister was a Catholic. I am exposing the Apostate Roman Catholic papal System which rejected Biblical truth for man-made doctrines and pagan teachings. The Roman Catholic papal system has moved the Christian faith from a God centered faith to a Man centered religion. Also, many false doctrines were passed onto the Protestant church movement after the split from Catholicism.
Many Catholic false teachings have shed a false light on the true character of God and in many cases, have made God out to be nothing more than a Sadistic Monster.
|-- We go directly to Heaven or Hell when we die. (The false belief that we are immortal already).
-- God tortures the Wicked for Eternity in the Lake of Fire - Catholic Dict., pg395. This is NOT true.
-- Man or a Priest can forgive your sins – The Confessional.
-- Sprinkling rather then Full Baptismal Submersion (11th century).
-- That Sunday is God's Day of worship and not the Sabbath, i.e. Saturday.
-- The teaching of a Purgatory.
-- Praying for the dead. -- Forbidden in the Bible
-- The Roman Rite of Mass.
-- Penance and Indulgences.
-- Transubstantiation – The Priest turning Wine and Bread into the Literal Blood and Body of Christ.
-- Repetitive prayer for forgiveness of sins. Prayer beads.. -- Forbidden in the Bible
-- Prayers to the dead and relics. -- Forbidden in the Bible
-- Infant baptism (6th century).
-- Preterism - A Jesuit teaching that the Antichrist was Antiochus Epiphanes in 167 BC.
-- Futurism - A Jesuit teaching that the Antichrist will appear during the 3 1/2 years of the Tribulation.
… and many others...
So now that we have a basic understanding of how some of God's truth has been lost over the course of Christian history, let's take a closer look at how this has happened and dig a little deeper into what some of these doctrines mean to God's character and to His church today. Remember, many of these false doctrines and practices were passed onto Protestantism and are errors practiced today.
(Matthew 15:8)This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
(Matthew 15:9) But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
A Little History:
During the Dark Ages, Biblical truth was kept away from God's people by the Roman Catholic papacy. The Bible was written, at that time, in Latin and was forbidden to be read by Laymen. Only Roman Catholic clergy were allowed to read the Bible and the papacy went as far as to place the Holy Bible in the "Index of Forbidden Books", in 1229A.D. During this time in church history some were able to get access to the Bible and persecution fell upon God's people who rejected papal rule. Many Christians were imprisoned and/or even killed for standing up for their personal convictions brought about from reading the Bible.
|"Canon 14. We prohibit also that the laity should not be permitted to have the books of the Old or New Testament; we most strictly forbid their having any translation of these books."- The Church Council of Toulouse 1229 AD Source: Heresy and Authority in Medieval Europe, Scholar Press, London, England copyright 1980 by Edward Peters,ISBN 0-85967-621-8, pp. 194-195
The Council of Tarragona of 1234, in its second canon, ruled that:
"No one may possess the books of the Old and New Testaments, and if anyone possesses them he must turn them over to the local bishop within eight days, so that they may be burned..."- The Church Council of Tarragona 1234 AD; 2nd Cannon - Source : D. Lortsch, Historie de la Bible en France, 1910, p.14.
"Opened on Thursday alongside the Inquisition archives was the infamous Index of Forbidden Books, which Roman Catholics were forbidden to read or possess on pain of excommunication. They showed that even "the Bible" was once on the blacklist. Translations of the holy book ended up on the bonfires along with other "heretical'' works. The Index of Forbidden Books and all excommunications relating to it were officially abolished in 1966. The Inquisition itself was established by Pope Gregory IX in 1233...." - Vatican archives reveal Bible was once banned book By Jude Webber ROME, Jan 22, 1998 (Reuters)
The explanation given by the Catholic church was that certain translations were un-approved and considered "Defective" by the church. It's interesting that the Bible's they considered defective, were the translations that were published by Wycliff and Tyndale. The Bible exposed the errors and deceptions used by the church to control their followers through fear and deception.
So why were Wycliff and Tyndale hated so much by the Catholic church of their times? It was because, Tyndale dared to translate the Bible into a language his contemporaries could understand. It had also been Wycliffe's passionate desire that everyone should be free to read the good news of eternal life through faith in Christ. At that time the Bible was written in Latin, a language that most could not read.
"It was in England that a major battle was fought and won for the right of the common people to have the Word of God in their language. One of the first who sought to make Bibles available to the average person was John Wycliffe, an Oxford theologian and 14th-century English reformer." (Quotes taken from History of the English Bible - See Link Below)
"Wycliffe argued that the Scriptures did little good locked away in Latin that few could understand. God's Word, he declared, is for all people: 'No man is so rude a scholar but that he might learn the words of the Gospel according to his simplicity.' Wycliffe thus determined to give the English people a translation that could be read in their native tongue. He and his associates completed the monumental task about 1382. Wycliffe's translation was based on the Latin Vulgate, as he and his colleagues knew no Hebrew or Greek." (Quotes taken from History of the English Bible - See Link Below)
"Wycliffe's Bible was the first complete rendering of the Scriptures into any form of modern English. His hand-copied Bibles were circulated widely and eagerly read. (This was before the days of printing.) But his Bibles brought him into conflict with Roman Catholic church officials. An inscription on a memorial table on the wall of Lutterworth church relates that Wycliffe's Bible drew on him the bitter hatred of all who were making merchandise of the popular credulity and ignorance." (Quotes taken from History of the English Bible - See Link Below)
"In 1522 Tyndale conceived the ambitious project of translating the New Testament directly from the Greek into English, bypassing the Latin Vulgate. To a critic of the plan, Tyndale announced: if God spare my life, ere many years pass, I will cause a boy that driveth the plough shall know more of the Scriptures than thou dost.' The project became his life's work." (Quotes taken from History of the English Bible - See Link Below)
The Catholic church did not want the common man to understand and read the Bible because they knew that everyone would see just how far the church had apostatized from truth and true Biblical teachings. The church also realized they could not control the conscious and personal convictions of men if they knew the truth of the Bible.
The Roman Catholic papacy ruled over the then known world from 538A.D. until 1798A.D.. During this time of religious intolerance and persecution, the Roman papacy imposed their beliefs over the conscience and convictions of men. Even today, deciding for oneself what you will believe theologically or rejecting what is taught by the Roman Catholic Church is considered Heresy by the church.
-- Definition of Heresy:
In order to do Roman Catholics no injustice, we shall quote from unquestioned authorities among them. And, since they will persecute people for “heresy,” we must first let them define what they mean by “heresy.”
In the New Catholic Dictionary, published by the Universal Knowledge Foundation, a Roman Catholic institution, New York, 1929, we read: FAFA 62.5
“ Heresy (Gr., hairesis, choice), deciding for oneself what one shall believe and practice .” Art. “Heresy,” p. 440. FAFA 62.6
"The Catholic Church is a respecter of conscience and liberty... Nevertheless, when confronted by heresy... she has recourse to force, to corporal punishment, to torture... She lit in Italy... the funeral piles of the inquisition. " -- Catholic professor Alfred Baudrillart "The Catholic Church, Renaissance, and Protestantism", pp 182, 183
Because of the tremendous suppression of Biblical truth during the Dark Ages, God re-awakened His truth to a Roman Catholic bishop by the name of Martin Luther. Martin Luther discovered by reading the bible that "The Just shall live by faith". This simple phrase liberated Luther from papal rule and started what later became known as the Protestant Reformation.
(Galatians 3:11) But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. [Also See: (Habakkuk 2:4), (Romans 1:17), (Hebrews 10:38)]
After the Protestant Reformation movement took hold, many truths that were once hidden from God's people were again brought into light by Holy scripture and the following truths were again open for rediscovery.
Please understand, most of the Biblical errors which found their way into both the Catholic and Protestant churches today, originated in the Roman Catholic Mother church.
Sunday or Sabbath Observance, What Happened???
The reason churches today worship on Sunday is because in 321A.D. Constantine the Great established the observance of Sunday as a legal duty, enacting that all courts of justice, inhabitants of towns, and workshops were to be at rest on Sunday, "vernerable day of the sun", (venerabili die solis), with an exception in favor of those engaged in agricultural labor. ("Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th ed., art. "Sunday").
The Catholic papacy adopted this day of Sunday observance as well in order to distance themselves from the Jewish religion and to bring pagan worshipers into the Christian church. They did this to accommodate pagan religious practices, the culture of that time. In other words, Sunday was the day which pagans practiced as their religious day of worship. They worshiped the Sun.
So when did Sabbath observance come back into the picture for Christian believers?
Sabbath keeping has been practiced starting after the last day of Creation, when God hallowed the Seventh day, on through the Jewish religion and into the Christian era. Even during the time of Roman Catholic papal rule, Sabbath keeping was practiced by those who rejected Roman Catholic dogma. One group that held fast to Sabbath keeping was the Waldenses. This was a group of Christians that regarded Catholic practices as apostate teachings and fought to keep Bible truths alive during times of persecution and intolerance from the Catholic Church.
As was written in the great book called "The Great Controversy", the following statements couldn't be said better...
"But of those who resisted the encroachments of the papal power, the Waldenses stood foremost. In the very land where popery had fixed its seat, there its falsehood and corruption were most steadfastly resisted. For centuries the churches of Piedmont maintained their independence; but the time came at last when Rome insisted upon their submission. After ineffectual struggles against her tyranny, the leaders of these churches reluctantly acknowledged the supremacy of the power to which the whole world seemed to pay homage. There were some, however, who refused to yield to the authority of pope or prelate. They were determined to maintain their allegiance to God and to preserve the purity and simplicity of their faith. A separation took place. Those who adhered to the ancient faith now withdrew; some, forsaking their native Alps, raised the banner of truth in foreign lands; others retreated to the secluded glens and rocky fastnesses of the mountains, and there preserved their freedom to worship God." (The Great Controversy)
"The faith which for centuries was held and taught by the Waldensian Christians was in marked contrast to the false doctrines put forth from Rome. Their religious belief was founded upon the written word of God, the true system of Christianity. But those humble peasants, in their obscure retreats, shut away from the world, and bound to daily toil among their flocks and their vineyards, had not by themselves arrived at the truth in opposition to the dogmas and heresies of the apostate church. Theirs was not a faith newly received. Their religious belief was their inheritance from their fathers. They contended for the faith of the apostolic church,--"the faith which was once delivered unto the saints." Jude 3. "The church in the wilderness," and not the proud hierarchy enthroned in the world's great capital, was the true church of Christ, the guardian of the treasures of truth which God has committed to His people to be given to the world." (The Great Controversy)
"The work of Sabbath reform to be accomplished in the last days is foretold in the prophecy of Isaiah: "Thus saith the Lord, Keep ye judgment, and do justice: for My salvation is near to come, and My righteousness to be revealed. Blessed is the man that doeth this, and the son of man that layeth hold on it; that keepeth the Sabbath from polluting it, and keepeth his hand from doing any evil." "The sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the Lord, to serve Him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be His servants, everyone that keepeth the Sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of My covenant; even them will I bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer." Isaiah 56:1, 2, 6, 7. " (The Great Controversy)
These words apply in the Christian age, as shown by the context: "The Lord God which gathereth the outcasts of Israel saith, Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him." Verse 8. Here is foreshadowed the gathering in of the Gentiles by the gospel. And upon those who then honor the Sabbath, a blessing is pronounced. Thus the obligation of the fourth commandment extends past the crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension of Christ, to the time when His servants should preach to all nations the message of glad tidings. (The Great Controversy)
Sabbath keeping had started afresh in the hearts of Christians who wished to follow what God said and not what Man taught. In current times, there are still many non-Jewish religions and churches that observe the Sabbath today.
In the Last Days, God will bring back truths that have been lost or trampled under foot by the Roman Catholic papacy, and the Sabbath is one of the most important Last Day truths that followers of Christ must understand. This is because, the day that you choose to worship on will become a litmus test at the End of time for whom you give authority to over religious matters.
I will also give you a sneak preview at what the Roman Catholic church states. They assert that Sunday observance is "Their Mark of Authority over religious matters".. This is an important statement which one needs to understand in the Last Days, since the ramifications are huge to followers of Christ.
What is Transubstantiation?
1) the act of transubstantiating; change of one substance into another
2) R.C.Ch., Eastern Orthodox Ch. a) the doctrine that, in the Eucharist, the whole substances of the bread and of the wine are changed into the body and blood of Christ, only the accidents of bread and wine remaining
--------------------- Directly from papal Teachings --------------------
"...the power of the priest is the power of the divine person; for the transubstantiation of the bread requires as much power as the creation of the world. ...thus the priest may be called the creator of the Creator..."
- St. Alphonsus De Liguori, in The Dignity of the Priesthood, p 33.
The Roman Catholic papacy (the Pope) claims to have creation power. As mentioned on the inset above, the Pope claims he possess the power of Transubstantiation. The Pope claims he has the ability to turn the substances of bread and wine into the actual flesh and blood of Jesus. In other words, the Pope claims the prerogatives of creative powers that are attributes of God alone.
The papal practice of the Eucharist Communion and claim of Transubstantiation, started around the year of 1215A.D..
The original ceremony of Communion started prior to Jesus' death on the cross when Jesus and His disciples met in the Upper Room and had Communion together. Unlike Baptism, which is a one time event, Communion is meant to be observed throughout the life of a Christian. It is a time when we corporately come together as one body of Christ to remember and celebrate what Christ did for us on the Cross of Calvary. We are told in 1 Corinthians 11:24...
|(1 Corinthians 11:24) And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
(1 Corinthians 11:25) After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
|(1 Corinthians 11:26) For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.
|(1 Corinthians 11:28) But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
(1 Corinthians 11:29) For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.
When we observe Communion, we are proclaiming our faith in His Substitutionary death on the cross for our sins, and show our participation in the body of Christ as we wait for His soon return. (1 Corinthians 11:26). When we observe Communion, we are taking time to examine ourselves, (1 Corinthians 11:28), and we are proclaiming a statement of faith in Christ.
Baptism by emersion has been practiced in the Christian church since the days of Jesus, but in 1311 A.D. a council of bishops from the Roman Catholic church, met at Ravenna in Italy and voted that either sprinkling or immersion was acceptable for everybody in the church. (George A. Klingman, Church History for Busy People). The practice of sprinkling then took over universally (except in the Greek Catholic Church), and has spread into some Protestant denominations in the ritual of infant baptism. This practice was accepted for many years...
But... during the 1600's a Baptist minister named John Smyth reestablished the practice of Baptism by immersion again, which he believed was shown in Holy Scriptures and was modeled by Jesus when He was baptized by John the Baptist. Most Protestant churches today have embraced total immersion as a Baptismal practice and consider sprinkling a practice of the Roman Catholic church.
Infant baptism and sprinkling is still practiced in some Protestant churches today, which is a carryover from the Roman Catholic church.
What is the Symbolism of Full Immersion Baptism?
Our Christian life begins with a changed heart in the life of the new believer. This is referred to as "passing from death into life". This new life begins when a new Christian turns away from sin and stops practicing sin in one's life. Baptism is the next step in a new believers life and the process of full immersion under water reflects that we are dying to our self and the sins of our old life. By coming out of the water, this reflects that we are resurrecting into the promise of a new life through Christ. (See Romans 6:3-7)
|(Romans 6:3) Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
(Romans 6:4) Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
(Romans 6:5) For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
(Romans 6:6) Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.
(Romans 6:7) For he that is dead is freed from sin.
In addition, our assurance of salvation rests solely upon our faith in the Substitutionary death of our Savior Jesus Christ, which through His death, burial, and resurrection we are justified and will be given Eternal life when we resurrect at the Second Coming of Jesus. (Romans 4:24, 25).
| (Romans 4:22) And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
(Romans 4:23) Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;
(Romans 4:24) But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;
(Romans 4:25) Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.
(Romans 5:1) Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
(1 Corinthians 15:51) Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
(1 Corinthians 15:52) In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
(1 Corinthians 15:53) For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
(1 Corinthians 15:54) So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
Baptism by immersion best portrays God's act of salvation through Jesus Christ. Every Christian that is baptized tells all who witness their baptism, "I am placing my faith in my Savior Jesus Christ, who went down into death for me and as I go down into this water, I too, by example accept Christ's gift of salvation and will die to myself and to sin, and I will rise again after physical death when Jesus returns at the Second Comings."
On a another note, Baptism also declares the rejection of Satan's government of selfishness, which runs rampant in today's world, and signifies the acceptance of God's government of love for others.
In 1215A.D., Auricular confession of sins to a Priest, instead of God, was instituted by Pope Innocent III in the Lateran Council. The Roman Catholic Priest took on the responsibility of Jesus and usurped Jesus' authority in the body of Christ.
|The Roman Catholic Church teaches that her priests (no matter how wicked or sinful they may be personally) exercise the power of forgiving sins by hearing confession of sins and granting pardon for them as ministers of God and in His name. Each Catholic is expected to account to a priest every impure thought or deed, to accuse himself before a priest of EVERY SIN to the best of their memory. Unless Catholics confess their sins to a Priest, they will end up in Hell forever... Although it is possible to gain forgiveness even of mortal sins if out of love of God above all else, you feel perfect contrition (CCC, 1452).
According to the Catholic faith, perfect contrition is quite rare and you must still intend to go to sacramental confession.
(Perfect Contrition - From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
Perfect contrition (from Latin contero – grind, crush, pound to pieces) in Catholic theology is a repentance for sins which is motivated by the love of God. It contrasts with imperfect contrition, or attrition; a repentance arising from a less pure motive, such as common decency, or fear of Hell.
Perfect contrition sounds like a contrite heart and God always looks upon the heart of Man to see the motivation behind what we do and how we act. The priest is really not needed if one is truly sorry for their sins.
|(Psalms 34:17) The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
(Psalms 34:18) The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
(Psalms 34:19) Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.
|(Psalms 51:16) For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.
(Psalms 51:17) The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
|(Isaiah 57:15) For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
|(Isaiah 66:1) Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?
(Isaiah 66:2) For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
The following are errors and falsehoods that are believed by the Catholic church and are NOT found anywhere in the Bible... As you can see in the verses above, God is looking for a contrite heart that is truly sorry for sin. He is not working through Man, but through Jesus.
| The following Taken From Roman Catholic Documents
The priest does really and truly forgive sins in virtue of the power given to him by Christ".Joseph Devarbe's Catechism, p. 279
|"Sins can be forgiven only through the Sacraments when duly administered: hence, it follows that both priests and Sacraments are the instruments which Christ makes use of to accomplish in us the pardon of sin and the grace of justification." Catechism of Trent, p 115 (quoted in Apostolic Digest, by Michael Malone, Book 5,"The Book of Obedience")|
|"And God himself is obliged to abide by the judgment of his priest and either not to pardon or to pardon, according as they refuse to give absolution, provided the penitent is capable of it." St. Alphonsus De Liguori, in The Dignity of the Priesthood, p. 27|
|"Were the redeemer to descend into a church, and sit in a confessional to administer the sacrament of penance, and a priest to set in a confessional, Jesus would say over each penitent: 'Ego te absolvo,' the priest would likewise say over his penitents, 'Ego te absolvo,' and the penitents of each would be equally absolved." St. Alphonsus De Liguori, in The Dignity of the Priesthood, p. 34 .|
|"Through priests, God communicates His grace to the faithful in the Sacraments. In a word, without priests, we cannot be saved!" St. Alphonsus Maria Liguori, (quoted in Apostolic Digest by Michael Malone, Book 5: "The Book of Obedience", Chapter 3: "The Sacraments Administered by the Priests Are Necessary for the Salvation of All Mankind").|
During and after the Protestant Reformation, truth was re-embraced, and personal prayer for forgiveness of sins was offered to Christ and Christ alone. Repentance had been rekindled in the hearts of God's people. There is no other way for sins to be forgiven accept through confession to Jesus alone. Confessing your sins to anyone other than Jesus, is a falsehood, an error and is not supported by Bible Scripture.
(Acts 4:10) Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.
(Acts 4:11)) This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
(Acts 4:12) Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
(Philippians 2:9) Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
(Philippians 2:10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
(Philippians 2:11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
(John 14:6) Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
(Revelation 5:12) Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
(Revelation 5:13) And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
Other scriptures of interest...
|(1 Timothy 2:5) For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
(Matthew 23:9) And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
(Hebrews 7:25) Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
|(Hebrews 8:1) Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;.
(Isaiah 42:8) I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
|(Matthew 6:7) But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
|(Matthew 15:3) But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
In 593A.D., Gregory I introduced the doctrine of Purgatory into the the Catholic church. By 1439A.D., Purgatory was proclaimed as a Dogma and was made official in the church.
|From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
Purgatory (Lat., "purgare", to make clean, to purify) in accordance with Catholic teaching is a place or condition of temporal punishment for those who, departing this life in God's grace, are, not entirely free from venial faults, or have not fully paid the satisfaction due to their transgressions.
If you will notice the last part of the definition of Purgatory above... It states... "... for those who... have not fully paid the satisfaction due to their transgressions.", this is simply a bypass of Jesus' finished work on the Cross and puts in place Works as your method of payment for your sins.
Now the Catholic church does teach that salvation involves a gradual process of sanctification over time which isn't too different from what Protestants believe. Protestants believe that the believer is saved through the finished work of Christ on the cross. Sanctification is the process by which God changes the heart of a believer and re-creates their heart and character in the the character of Jesus. God's desire is that we reflect the character of Jesus to the world. The process of sanctification is a life long process and is something that God does for the believer over time.
Catholic doctrine teaches that believers can lose their salvation and become isolated from God, but they can regain it through church sacraments. The Catholic church goes on to say, that few people can be accepted directly into Heaven at death. Those who are in a state of mortal sin at the time of their death are sent to Hell. Purgatory cleanses the remainder from the temporal consequences of the sins that they have collected during their lifetime on earth. The Catholic church teaches that eventually, the latter will be eligible to be transferred to Heaven.
|What are Church Sacraments?
Webster's New World Dictionary:
any of certain rites instituted by Jesus and believed to be means of grace: baptism, confirmation, the Eucharist, penance, holy orders, matrimony, and Anointing of the Sick are the seven recognized by the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches; Protestants generally recognize only baptism and the Lord's Supper (the Eucharist)
The Catholic Church teaches that the effect of a sacrament comes, ex opere operato, by the very fact of being administered, regardless of the personal holiness of the minister administering it. However, a recipient's own lack of proper disposition to receive the grace conveyed can block the effectiveness of the sacrament in that person. The sacraments presuppose faith and through their words and ritual elements, nourish, strengthen and give expression to faith.
What are Mortal Sins?
Mortal sins are sins that destroy the grace of God in the heart of the sinner. By their very nature, a mortal sin cuts our relationship off from God and turns man away from his creator. St. Paul’s letter to the Hebrews tell us that "if we sin willfully after having the knowledge of the truth, there is now left no sacrifice for sins" (Hebrews 10:26).
Mortal sin is a refusal of God's offer of live and love. It's that simple. No matter how much you want to love God, no matter how strong you feel your budding faith life is...
... a single act of mortal sin is a bold declaration that you do not accept God's love. (http://www.beginningcatholic.com/mortal-sin.html)
Mortal sin destroys charity in the heart of man by a grave violation of God's law; it turns man away from God, who is his ultimate end and his beatitude, by preferring an inferior good to him....
Mortal sin is a radical possibility of human freedom, as is love itself. It results in the loss of charity and the privation of sanctifying grace, that is, of the state of grace. If it is not redeemed by repentance and God's forgiveness, it causes exclusion from Christ's kingdom and the eternal death of hell, for our freedom has the power to make choices for ever, with no turning back.
(Catechism, 1855 & 1861)
In the inset above the Catholic church makes reference to Hebrews 10:26, but their reference needs clarification to understand what is being said in this passage. What is meant here is that if one turns away from the only provision for the forgiveness of sins, Jesus, and willfully sins, he is rejecting Jesus. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we are given the Holy Spirit and God writes His Law on our hearts so we will not want to sin against Him anymore. But after accepting Jesus, we will still wrestle with sin in our lives, make mistakes and sin.
We all have sins we struggle with, some like to call them 'treasured sins' that we will hold on to because we have a hard time letting them go, but with the help of Jesus, He can liberate us from those sins. We live in a fallen, sinful world and will not be totally liberated from sin until the New Earth and the New Jerusalem is created after the Second Coming of Jesus.
The picture drawn in Hebrews 10:26 shows that there is no other provision for sin other than Jesus. When one willfully turns from Jesus and sins, there is no forgiveness for those sins. In other words, there is no other way one can be saved and forgiven other than Jesus.
Those who do not engage in true worship and surrender to Christ, and who do not continue to persevere (Hebrews10:19-25), will ultimately fall away and be lost. Once saved, always saved, is a belief that scripture does not support. There is no other name under Heaven by which we can be saved, but Jesus. If you walk away from Him, how will you attain salvation and forgiveness of sin?
I suggest you read all of Hebrews chapter 10 to get the full meaning of what Paul is saying in this chapter and not just read one verse to build a premise.
|(Hebrews 10:26) For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,
(Hebrews 10:27) But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
(John 14:6) Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Scripture goes on to say that we are in a sanctification process and if we sin, we still have an advocate with the Father, which is Jesus. We just need to come back and ask for true forgiveness and trust in Jesus to save us from our sins. But if we decide to reject Jesus and continue sinning, there is no provision for those actions since we are rejecting the only provision for sin that God has supplied, Jesus.
(1John 1:8) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
(1John 1:9) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
(1John 1:10) If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
At the heart of the doctrine Purgatory is the idea of "Works", where you pay for your sins in Purgatory. The scripture makes it clear that we can do nothing to help in our salvation... See Ephesians 2:8,9.
|(Ephesians 2:8) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
(Ephesians 2:9) Not of works, lest any man should boast.
The Catholic church still teaches the doctrine of Purgatory, and teaches the doctrinal error of Eternal Damnation in Hell Fire where the Wicked will be tortured in the Lake of Fire for the ceaseless ages of Eternity. The concept that God will torture his creation through out Eternity in the Lake of Fire is a pagan belief and teaching that the Catholic church embraced to control their parishioners. Unfortunately, after the Protestant Reformation, the Protestant church brought along this errant doctrine and still teaches this today.
Please read the topic later in this document called:
|From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
Penance is a sacrament of the New Law instituted by Christ in which forgiveness of sins committed after baptism is granted through the priest's absolution to those who with true sorrow confess their sins and promise to satisfy for the same.
It is called a "sacrament" not simply a function or ceremony, because it is an outward sign instituted by Christ to impart grace to the soul. As an outward sign it comprises the actions of the penitent in presenting himself to the priest and accusing himself of his sins, and the actions of the priest in pronouncing absolution and imposing satisfaction.
This whole procedure is usually called, from one of its parts, "confession", and it is said to take place in the "tribunal of penance ", because it is a judicial process in which the penitent is at once the accuser, the person accused, and the witness, while the priest pronounces judgment and sentence. The grace conferred is deliverance from the guilt of sin and, in the case of mortal sin, from its eternal punishment; hence also reconciliation with God, justification.
Finally, the confession is made not in the secrecy of the penitent's heart nor to a layman as friend and advocate, nor to a representative of human authority, but to a duly ordained priest with requisite jurisdiction and with the "power of the keys", i.e., the power to forgive sins which Christ granted to His Church.
Webster's New World Dictionary:
1 a) a sacrament involving the confession of sin, repentance, and acceptance of the satisfaction imposed, followed by absolution by a priest
b) the satisfaction imposed, as the recital of certain prayers
2 any act of reparation, self-punishment, etc. done in repentance for a sin or wrongdoing
As you can see, this is just another form of "Works" where Jesus is once again side stepped in favor of the priest or your self induced punishment where you work, and are responsible for your own salvation.
The beginnings of practicing the sacrament of penance in the form of individual confession as we know it now, i.e. bringing confession of sins and reconciliation together, can be traced back to the 11th century. In 1215A.D. the Fourth Council of the Lateran made it canon law that every Catholic Christian goes to confession in his parish at least once a year.
Although the issue of the institution of this sacrament by Jesus himself (believed by the had been debated since the Council of Trent, in 1907A.D., in Lamentabili Sane Exitu (items 46 and 47) Pope Pius X specifically reaffirmed the relevance of Gospel of John 20:22-23 to this sacrament, overriding any previous assertions. In Lamentabili Sane Exitu he quoted John 20:22-23: "Receive the Holy Spirit; whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained." (Source: Wikipedia)
Now, I have to ask you... If a church does not follow Holy Scripture, how can they be representative of God and administer priestly duties? We cannot call ourselves a true Christian and followers of Jesus, if we are not obeying His commandments. Wearing the name of a Christian title, does not make for a Christian. That would be like calling myself a doctor of medicine and getting my education from a bicycle Users Manual. This would not make me a doctor now would it?
We need to follow and obey the laws of God if we are going to be one of Jesus' followers. We must come to Jesus for forgiveness and no one else. After all, why would Jesus say the following in His Holy Scripture.
|(1 John 1:1) That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life—.
(1 John 1:2) the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us—
|(1 John 1:3) that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.
(1 John 1:4) And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.
|(1 John 1:5) This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all..
(1 John 1:6) If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.
|(1 John 1:7) But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
(1 John 1:8) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us..
|(1 John 1:9) If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
(1 John 1:10) If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.
In 1 John 1:6, this verse is saying that if we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice truth. In other words, if we are not following what God has outlined in His Holy word, then we are not walking in light, but rather we are walking in darkness.
In 1 John 1:9 the Bible is saying that if we confess our sins to "Jesus", then God is "Faithful and Just" to forgive us our sins. It's our confession to Jesus that God accepts, not our confession to a sinful man. The confessing of our sins to anyone other than Jesus, is a deception which God will not accept.
If we must work penance for our sins we are rejecting Christ's finished work on the cross when Jesus died for your sins and mine.
|(Ephesians 2:8) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
(Ephesians 2:9) Not of works, lest any man should boast.
As you can see, salvation is by faith in Jesus and not by works. This is what Holy Scripture teaches. It is all about Jesus and NOT about us. We do not work out our salvation through Penance. This is an offense to God. God sent His son to Earth to save Mankind (John 3:16). Any other approach to salvation neglects and rejects God's only provision.
|Webster's New World Dictionary Definition
1 the act of indulging oneself, or giving way to one's own desires
2 a favor or privilege
3 the grant of certain religious liberties to Dissenters and Roman Catholics by Charles II and James II
4 Roman Catholic Church: partial or complete remission, under conditions specified by the Church, of divine temporal punishment that may otherwise still be due for sin committed but forgiven
The Roman Catholic Church claims the power to excuse or release persons from all or part of the suffering coming to them in Purgatory. This is done for good acts performed or prayers said. As you can see, this again is another form of "works" and is associated with a doctrine that is not found in the Bible, i.e. Purgatory.
In the Middle or Dark Ages, indulgences were granted in exchange for donations given to the church. Thus the scandal of selling indulgences, was the catalyst for bringing about the Protestant Reformation by Martin Luther.
While the practice of the selling of indulgences has been condemned, the Roman Catholic Church still grants indulgences for deeds and prayers. If a devout person gains more indulgences than they need to wipe out their own time in Purgatory, they may assign the excess indulgences to persons (usually deceased) of their choosing.
Certain prayers take three years off one’s sentence in Purgatory. Other actions, usually performed over a period of days, carry a "plenary indulgence." That is, they release a soul from all their Purgatorial sentence, no matter how long. Some Roman Catholics make a practice of collecting as many plenary indulgences as they can. They assign them first to their deceased relatives, and then to the souls in Purgatory with the longest sentences.
Such practices are incomprehensible to Christians outside the Roman Catholic Church (and to many within it as well). (Definition from http://www.rmbowman.com/catholic/def-indu.htm)
In fact, it was indulgences by the Catholic church that became the catalyst that inflamed Martin Luther in 1517, to publish his Ninety-Five Theses against the Roman papacy on the doors of the Catholic church. This simple act by Luther launched the Protestant Reformation.
| Webster's Definition: Tithe
one tenth of the annual produce of one's land or of one's annual income, paid as a tax or contribution to support a church or its clergy
Contrast indulgences with Tithing. The act of Tithing is an act of giving back to God what He has blessed us with during our life. Tithing shows God that we acknowledge His provision in our lives and shows we support His church. Tithing has never been used to place oneself in a beneficial position with God like penance is used in the Catholic Church.
Some believe that Tithing gained momentum in the Christian church around 1700A.D. There is debate whether Tithing should be stopped since it was done during the Old Testament period.
Some excerpts in this topic were taken from
Amazing Bible Facts - "The truth about the Sabbath"
The concept of Hell has it's presence in numerous religions around the world, not only Christian. The Christian faith believes, for the most part, that the Wicked will suffer Eternal torment in the Lake of Fire to burn forever and forever, through out the ceaseless ages of eternity. Is this what the Bible truly teaches or is this an error that has filtered into the Christian church? We need to let the Bible explain and interpret itself so we can understand what the truth is about Hell. Contrary to current Christian belief, Hell Fire does not exist yet!
Hell was not initially intended for Man, but rather for Satan and his fallen Angels which rebelled against God in Heaven. It was during the course of Sin on Earth, that Mankind's identity became entangled with Sin. The Lake of Fire, or Hell, is a place that God will create at the end of time to destroy Satan, his fallen Angels, the wicked and Sin all at once.
(Matthew 25:41) Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Note: See description and explanation of Everlasting Fire later in this document
The Bible uses the term "for ever" to symbolize a length of time. It can mean a short stretch of time, a time span from generation to generation, or the span of time from the creation of the Earth to its conclusion. If you remember your Bible stories, for ever even symbolized a stretch of time that Jonah was in the belly of the Whale. In fact, let's take a look at the story of Jonah. In this story, scripture recounts Jonah's experience in Jonah 2:5,6...
|(Jonah 1:17) Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.
(Jonah 2:5) The waters compassed me about, even to the soul: the depth closed me round about, the weeds were wrapped about my head.
(Jonah 2:6) I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.
As we can see Jonah is in the belly of a great fish in this passage. Jonah's reference to "bars" in this passage refers to the ribs of this great fish. (Note: Some like to refer to this great fish as a Whale.) Notice that he says the bars were about him "for ever". Now did Jonah really stay in the belly of this great fish for ever? NO, he didn't.. but to Jonah, it felt like a long time. Jonah was in fact, in the belly of the fish for 3 days, after which, he was spit up onto shore by this fish. Now, the concept of "for ever" here does not mean endless does it? Here it really means "Three Days".
|(Jonah 2:10) And the LORD spake unto the fish, and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land.
Let's take a look at another instance of the word "for ever" and see how it is used... Remember the story of Samuel? In 1 Samuel 1 there is a story of a woman who was barren of child. The woman's name was Hanna and she was the wife of a man named Elkanah. Elkanah had two wives and one had children and the other, Hanna, did not.
Hanna was constantly teased by Elkanah's other wife, Peninnah and in 1 Samuel 1:6, Peninnah was referred to as Hanna's adversary.
|(1 Samuel 1:6) And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the LORD had shut up her womb.
Because she was barren, Hanna cried out to God to open her womb so she could bear a child. God blessed Hanna and she eventually gave birth to a child she named Samuel. Because of her joy and happiness, Hanna dedicated her child, Samuel, to the priest so that Samuel could serve the Lord "for ever". (See: 1 Samuel 1:22 and 1 Samuel 1:28)
|(1 Samuel 1:20) Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.
(1 Samuel 1:21) And the man Elkanah, and all his house, went up to offer unto the LORD the yearly sacrifice, and his vow.
(1 Samuel 1:22) But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever.
(1 Samuel 1:23) And Elkanah her husband said unto her, Do what seemeth thee good; tarry until thou have weaned him; only the LORD establish his word. So the woman abode, and gave her son suck until she weaned him.
(1 Samuel 1:24) And when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bullocks, and one ephah of flour, and a bottle of wine, and brought him unto the house of the LORD in Shiloh: and the child was young.
(1 Samuel 1:25) And they slew a bullock, and brought the child to Eli.
(1 Samuel 1:26) And she said, Oh my lord, as thy soul liveth, my lord, I am the woman that stood by thee here, praying unto the LORD.
(1 Samuel 1:27) For this child I prayed; and the LORD hath given me my petition which I asked of him:
(1 Samuel 1:28) Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD. And he worshipped the LORD there.
In the story of Jonah, "for ever" represented 3 days. Here in the story of Samuel, the term "for ever" represents the life time of Samuel, in other words, as long as he liveth, the span of time until Samuel dies.
So we can see that "for ever" can mean a finite amount of time, not necessarily, an eternal timeframe. If you do a study on the word "Ever" in Strong's Concordance and other commentaries, you will find some interesting information.
|The Complete Word Study Dictionary - ever
-- A preposition and adverb meaning as far as, up to, unto, until, while. It is used of time meaning until
-- It may indicate the time while something is being done
-- A masculine noun meaning a very long time. The word usually refers to looking forward but many times expresses the idea of looking backward. It may cover a given person's lifetime
-- A period of many generations
|Strong's Hebrew and Greek Dictionary - ever
-- (used as a preposition, adverb or conjugation; especially with a preposition); as far (or long, or much) as, whether of space (even unto) or time (during, while, until) or degree (equally with):
-- It may indicate the time while something is being done
-- properly concealed, that is, the vanishing point; generally time out of mind (past or future), that is, (practically) eternity; frequentative adverbially (especially with prepositional prefix) always: - always (-s), ancient (time), any more, continuance, eternal, (for, [n-]) ever (-lasting, -more, of old), lasting, long (time), (of) old (time), perpetual, at any time, (beginning of the) world (+ without end).
Now, "for ever" can also be used as in meaning Eternal, such as without end, but the term "for ever" must be used in context with the underlying meaning of the sentence or paragraph in which it is used...
For example... God is Eternal, He lives "for ever". In this statement, "for ever" is used in context with the nature of God. God's nature is known to be Eternal. For God is an Eternal being and will always exist...
To see another example of the use of "for ever" in terms and context of Eternity, let's look at Jude 1:24,25... Notice that verse uses the word "EVER" only.
|(Jude 1:24) Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,
(Jude 1:25) To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.
Even though the word "EVER" is used in this passage, the context implies, Eternity, not a finite length of time which will eventually end. Glory, majesty, dominion and power are attributed to God only, both now and for "EVER".
The terms "for ever" or "EVER" are usually used to show a matter of time...for example, a long time, as far as, or time meaning until, such as until something has finished it's task or work. "For ever" or "EVER" can also be used in the sense of Eternity... So with this understanding, how do you think "for ever" or "EVER" should be used in context with Hell Fire and how does scripture define "for ever" as it pertains to the destruction of the Wicked? Let's take a look and let the Bible give us the explanation.
(Matthew 25:41) Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Oh, OH... Matthew 25:41 references "Everlasting Fire" What does this mean?
Note: The following explanation is not of my making. I wish I could take credit for this excellent work and explanation of Everlasting Fire and Everlasting Destruction, but I am borrowing from the work of Pastor Stephen Bohr, founder of "Secrets Unsealed Ministries". Pastor Bohr studied many years on this subject and I've found his work to be the best explanation I've seen done on the understanding of Everlasting Fire and Everlasting Destruction.
This topic in its complete form can be seen in his 12 hour DVD lecture series called, "Misunderstood Texts on the State of the Dead", primarily his lecture disk number 11, "Undying Worm & Unquenchable Fire". This whole lecture series is fully grounded in Biblical truth in scriptural context, and is definitely worth buying.
The Undying Worm & The Unquenchable Fire
Now moving on, I will try to do my best to help you understand the concept of Everlasting Fire and Everlasting Destruction.
Let's take a look at what the Bible says about Everlasting Fire... In Matthew 25:41-46 it references Everlasting Fire and Everlasting Punishment, also in 2 Thessalonians 1:9 it mentions Everlasting Destruction...
|(Matthew 25:41) Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
(Matthew 25:42) For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
(Matthew 25:43) I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
(Matthew 25:44) Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
(Matthew 25:45) Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
(Matthew 25:46) And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
(2 Thessalonians 1:9) Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power
So here we have Everlasting Fire, Everlasting Destruction and Everlasting Punishment. The term everlasting seems to mean never ending... but how does the Bible explain these concepts? We need to see them in context of how they are being used.
Let's look at the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. These two Biblical cities were known for their wickedness and God destroyed them. We see in Genesis 24-28, that God rained down brimstone and fire from Heaven on these cities...
|(Genesis 19:24) Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven;
(Genesis 19:28) And he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.
|and in Jude 1:7 is says...
(Jude 1:7) Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
|and notice what is says in 2 Peter 2:6 about Sodom and Gomorrah...
(2 Peter 2:6) And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
Notice that Sodom and Gomorrah were turned into Ashes. Does this mean that Sodom and Gomorrah are still burning today? Can you burn ashes? No, ashes are the result of the completed work of fire. So if Sodom and Gomorrah was burned with the vengeance of Eternal Fire into ashes, is the fire out? No, the fire that burned Sodom and Gomorrah never went out, but the cities were burned into ashes and suffered Everlasting Destruction. But Sodom and Gomorrah are not still burning... How can this be? How can anything suffer destruction by being burned with Eternal Fire and not still be burning?
So again I ask, can ashes burn? Ashes cannot burn since all that is consumable has been depleted and burned up. Here we see in context that Sodom and Gomorrah suffered Eternal Destruction by the vengeance of Eternal Fire. What is meant here is that the results of Sodom and Gomorrah's burning into ashes, is eternal in the sense of the results, not their burning. In other words, their destruction is eternal. Eternal fire produced eternal destruction, into ashes. The eternal destruction was caused by God.
So what does it mean when scripture uses the term "... suffering the vengeance of Eternal fire"? How can Eternal Fire have vengeance?
Let's look at Deuteronomy 4:23,24...
(Deuteronomy 4:23) Take heed unto yourselves, lest ye forget the covenant of the LORD your God, which he made with you, and make you a graven image, or the likeness of any thing, which the LORD thy God hath forbidden thee.
(Deuteronomy 4:24) For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.
So according Deuteronomy 4:24, what is God? God is a consuming fire! Now let's look at Hebrews 12:28,29
(Hebrews 12:28) Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
(Hebrews 12:29) For our God is a consuming fire.
As we can see again, God is referred to as a consuming fire in Hebrews as well. So a character trait of God is that He is a consuming fire.
Question, in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, was God a Consuming Fire before He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah? Was God a Consuming Fire after He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah? The answer to both of these questions is Yes!
So now, let's take a look at the time when Moses went up to mount Sinai, notice what the site of the glory of the Lord looked like...
(Exodus 24:15) And Moses went up into the mount, and a cloud covered the mount.
(Exodus 24:16) And the glory of the LORD abode upon mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days: and the seventh day he called unto Moses out of the midst of the cloud.
(Exodus 24:17) And the site of the glory of the Lord was like a devouring fire on the top of the mount in the eyes of the children of Israel.
So from Bible teaching, we can see that the Glory of God is a devouring fire. So I ask you, if God is an Eternal being, would His consuming fire character also be Eternal? Yes, God is a consuming fire and His fire is still burning... In other words, His glorious character is still as a burning fire and is an Eternal fire.
The references in scripture that we've read in this section, reveals that God is Eternal Fire. So is God a bunch of burning flames? No, fire is a characteristic of God's glory. God's glory is like a devouring fire.
When we see Sodom and Gomorrah suffered the vengeance of Eternal Fire, this is referring to Sodom and Gomorrah's destruction being caused by God and they suffered God's vengeance against evil. So Sodom and Gomorrah suffered the vengeance of God! It is God's Glory that is Everlasting, or Eternal, and His glory is like fire.
(Romans 12:19) Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.
Sodom and Gomorrah was reduced into ashes. When the Bible refers to the Everlasting Destruction of these two cities, it is not referring to the never ceasing act of destroying Sodom and Gomorrah for eternity in fire, but rather it is the results of their destruction which will last for eternity. This means that Sodom and Gomorrah will never rise again. Their destruction will last for ever, or eternity, not their punishing. Their punishment is eternal in the sense that the result of their destruction is Everlasting.
The Truth About the Lake of Fire!
The belief that God tortures His creation through-out the ceaseless ages of Eternity, is NOT Biblically correct. This simple truth was hard for me to grasp since I grew up believing the Wicked would suffer for Eternity in the Lake of Fire. This concept is a pagan belief and misunderstanding of scripture that was an error brought into the church by the Roman Catholic papacy. Scripture makes it clear, that those who suffer Second Death in the Lake of Fire, will eventually burn out. (See Ezekiel 28 Below) If this was not true then how would the saints be able to walk on the ashes of the Wicked, on Earth, after the New Jerusalem comes down from Heaven?
You see, no one will burn for Eternity in the Lake of Fire, not even Satan. Their fire will eventually burn out but the total destruction of the Wicked will last for Eternity, not their torture. When the unsaved and Wicked are cast into the Lake of Fire their torture is not eternal in the sense of time, but rather, in the sense of its effect or result. The Wicked are burned up completely, to cease existence and to never exist again. The Wicked will be totally destroyed.
Look at what will happen to Satan, which was also known as "the anointed cherub"... He is destroyed, never to exist again.
|(Ezekiel 28:14) Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
(Ezekiel 28:18) Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.
(Ezekiel 28:19) All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more.
Let the Bible interpret and explain itself. It is a scriptural fact that some Wicked will burn longer than others and Satan will burn the longest, but ALL the Wicked will eventually burn out into ashes. In other words, they will be destroyed, never to exist again. The Bible states that each of the Wicked will suffer punishment according to their deeds done throughout their life.
|(Luke 12:40) Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect."
(Luke 12:41) Then Peter said to Him, "Lord, do You speak this parable only to us, or to all people?"
(Luke 12:42) And the Lord said, "Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his master will make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of food in due season?
(Luke 12:43) Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.
(Luke 12:44) Truly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all that he has.
(Luke 12:45) But if that servant says in his heart, 'My master is delaying his coming,' and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and be drunk,
(Luke 12:46) the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
(Luke 12:47) And that servant who knew his master's will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
(Luke 12:48) But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.
As the Bible states, the Wicked will experience an Everlasting Destruction, they will suffer the Second Death from which there is no resurrection into life again.
Let me ask a question... Would you spank a child for a week, a month or even a year without stopping? Of course you wouldn't, even a normal person would not abuse someone for eternity? In the book of Job, an interesting question is asked...
| (Job 4:15) Then a spirit passed before my face; the hair of my flesh stood up:
(Job 4:16) It stood still, but I could not discern the form thereof: an image was before mine eyes, there was silence, and I heard a voice, saying,
(Job 4:17) Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?
(Job 4:18) Behold, he put no trust in his servants; and his angels he charged with folly:
(Job 4:19) How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth?
The notion that God will torture His creation for Eternity, is a doctrine created by the Devil and is a deceptive move away from what scripture truly teaches. Does God want His creation to love Him out of fear? Would anyone really want to serve a God who has a cruel character such as this? The answer is No!!! Serving God would be based on Fear, and Satan knows this and wants you to believe this lie.
God doesn't want us to love Him based on fear, but rather with a love freely given to Him. Satan has purposely made God out to be a monster, so you will not want a relationship with Jesus... and I'm sad to say, many have bought this Satanic lie and have rejected God because of this falsehood.
Please do not misunderstand what is being said here. God's justice demands that sin be destroyed from His Kingdom. Sin destroys and must be eliminated. Sin is an attack against the Laws of God and God's Government and the Laws of God protects His Kingdom and His creation. God doesn't want anyone to be destroyed, but for those who reject God and do not want to be with Him, God will give into their desires and will have no recourse other than to destroy them.
The wicked do not want to be with God because they have intertwined their character so tight with sin that they can only relate to selfishness rather than SelfLessness. God's kingdom is based on love and caring for others. Sin embraces selfishness and holds claim to self more than others, even at others expense. Sin destroys, love builds.
God will destroy the wicked in the Lake of Fire, known as the Second Death. In scripture this is known as God's Strange Act.
(2 Peter 3:9) The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
(Isaiah 28:21) For the LORD shall rise up as in mount Perazim, he shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that he may do his work, his strange work; and bring to pass his act, his strange act.
(Isaiah 28:22) Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord GOD of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth.
Now concerning this concept of eternal torment, the concept of ANY entity who would torture their creation for Eternity is more closely aligned with Satan's character and not God's.
... and on another note... The belief that the wicked are now burning in the Lake of Fire is another error and false doctrine that is believed by most Christians today. The truth is, no one is burning in the Lake of Fire because all who die, "Rest" or "Sleep" in the grave until the resurrection and the Second Coming of Christ.
The Lake of Fire will not be created until God rains down Fire from Heaven after the Great White Throne Judgment.
(Revelation 20:9) And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
Is the Devil In Charge of Hell?
A Final Thought
If a religious system negates Holy Scripture yet calls itself "Christian" and places in its stead another Gospel that does not line up with the Bible, why would anyone in this apostate system believe that God would honor the forgiven sins offered by and through this system?
| Webster's Definition: Stead
1 the place or position of a person or thing as filled by a replacement, substitute, or successor !to send another in one's stead"
2 advantage, service, or avail: now only in stand someone in good stead, to give someone good use, service, or advantage
The Roman Catholic papacy has pompously declared that they do not hold scripture as their plumb line for truth, but hold "Tradition of the fathers" as their authority. The Roman Catholic church has apostatized from God's truth and have substituted a man centric gospel in place of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
To learn more about what Bible Prophecy says about the Roman Catholic papacy, check out the topic...
If you do not have a relationship with Jesus, please consider turning your heart and life over to Christ...
Some excerpts taken from
Amazing Bible Facts