“Pope Benedict XVI has reasserted the universal primacy of the Roman Catholic Church, approving a document released Tuesday that says Orthodox churches were defective and that other Christian denominations were not true churches.”
It takes a lot of misguided guts and false courage to claim that your church is the only true church; and those outside it, do not have the “means of salvation” as what the present Roman pontiff claims. Although the Second Vatican Council, which was approved by two of his predecessors, Pope John XXIII and Pope Paul VI, said that the Scriptures or the Holy Bible should guide the theological and the devotional life of the Catholic Church, this seems to be just a camouflage of the erroneous belief of the RCC. Why? The official Bible of the Roman Catholic Church states that:
(1 Corinthians 5:13) “For them that are without, God will judge. Put away the evil one from among yourselves.” DOUAY-RHEIMS VERSION
Even the most holy of the Roman pontiff (if there be one) does not have any right judging those outside the church, granting (without accepting) that the RCC is the true church. God judges those that are without or outside the church of the Bible.
This claim is highly unscriptural, considering the fact that the RCC has not reached all nations of the world in its almost 2 millennia of history. Justice and equity calls for love and compassion. We do not have the right to judge people to whom we have not yet shared the truth. The apostolic teaching is, those who were not reached by the preaching of the gospel, but are doing the things contained in the law, even if they have not yet heard the law, they will be justified.
(Romans 2:11:15) “For there is no respect of persons with God. For whosoever have sinned without the law shall perish without the law: and whosoever have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law. For not the hearers of the law are just before God: but the doers of the law shall be justified. For when the Gentiles, who have not the law, do by nature those things that are of the law; these, having not the law, are a law to themselves. Who shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness to them: and their thoughts between themselves accusing or also defending one another…”
What is apostolic, is to believe that there is justification (or salvation) for those who, while they have not heard the law, but are doing the things contained in the law written by God in their conscience, God is fair, compassionate, and just (not like all the popes in Rome who carelessly judge those outside their church). God can save even those who have no faith.
(1 Timothy 4:10) “For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those that believe.”
Notice the phrase “especially of those that believe”. God can save even those who are incapable of believing.
Can a child or a babe have faith? Can a moron, a Mongoloid, or a mentally retarded believe?
(Hebrews 5:13) “For every one that useth milk is unskillfull in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.”
But God can definitely save them — even if they do not join the Catholic Church. In fact, the very recent findings (but very much delayed biblically) of the International Theological Commission (ITC) said that babies who died without baptism will go to heaven, thus, belying the centuries-old erroneous, non-apostolic and non-biblical belief of limbo. This pope is certainly not of a sound memory. He forgot the most famous and influential product of the Second Vatican Council (Lumen Gentium 8).
Are babies born of Jewish and non-Christian parents qualified to enter heaven? If they are, then they are not members of the Catholic Church, so, the conclusion of the pope that outside the RCC has “no means of salvation” is false! God has it, because He is the only qualified judge and not anybody else outside of The True Church; which certainly is not the Roman Catholic Church, because its teachings are not apostolic.
If the teachings of a church are apostolic, they must conform to the most fundamental apostolic teachings in the Bible. They must be written in apostolic epistles or books. We must learn them directly from the writings of the apostles!
(1 Corinthians 4:6) “But these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollo, for your sakes: that in us you may learn that one be not puffed up against the other for another, above that which is written. “ DOUAY-RHEIMS VERSION
Accepting any teachings not written by the apostles like limbo and purgatory is being non-apostolic!
(1 Corinthians 5:13) “For them that are without, God will judge…”
Remember, God will judge and not the pope!
So, is the statement of Pope Benedict XVI, that other Christians outside the Roman Catholic Church are not true Christians, biblically correct? I vehemently disagree!
We will prove in another article that Catholicism is not Christianity.