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” I have also spoken by the prophets, and I have multiplied visions, and used similitudes, by the ministry of the prophets.” Hosea 12:10
Christ’s parables do not create false analogies. They are true to such an extent that they can be deeply meditated upon and considered in exact detail and will remain completely authentic.
Most Protestants and Baptists believe in the eternal security of the believer – because the person received the new birth and eternal life by faith in Christ.
The Pope is apparently now also preaching eternal security – a salvation that cannot be lost – but not based upon belief – rather based on the ritual of baptism – eternal life by having been sprinkled with some water as an infant:
… The images of the tomb and of the maternal womb referring to the font are in fact very incisive to express what a great thing happens through the simple gestures of Baptism. I like to quote the inscription that is found in the old Roman Baptistery of the Lateran, on which one reads in Latin this expression, attributed to Pope Sixtus III: “Mother Church gives birth virginally, through water, the children she conceives by the breath of God. Those of you reborn from this font, hope for the Kingdom of Heaven.” It’s beautiful: the Church that has us born, the Church that is womb, is our Mother through Baptism.
If our parents have given us earthly life, the Church has regenerated us to eternal life. We have become children in His Son Jesus (Cf. Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:5-7). On each one of us also, reborn of the water and of the Holy Spirit, the celestial Father has his voice resound with infinite love, which says: “You are my beloved son” (Cf. Matthew 3:17). This paternal voice, imperceptible to the ear but very audible to the heart of one who believes, accompanies us throughout our life, without ever abandoning us. Throughout life the Father says to us: “You are my beloved son, you are my beloved daughter.” God love us so much, as a Father, and He doesn’t leave us alone. This from the moment of Baptism. Reborn as children of God, we are so forever! Baptism, in fact, isn’t repeated, because it imprints an indelible spiritual mark: “No sin can erase this mark, even if sin prevents Baptism from bearing the fruits of salvation” (CCC, 1272). The mark of Baptism is never lost! “Father, but if a person becomes a brigand, of the most famous, who kills people, who commits injustices, doesn’t the mark go away? “ No. To his own shame that son of God does those things, but the mark doesn’t go away. And he continues to be a son of God who goes against God, but God never disowns His children. Have you understood this last thing? God never disowns His children. Shall we repeat it all together? “God never disowns His children.” A bit louder, as I’m deaf and I didn’t understand: [They repeat louder] “God never disowns His children.” There, that’s fine.
Incorporated in Christ through Baptism, the baptized are, therefore, conformed to Him, “the first-born among many brethren” (Romans 8:29). Through the action of the Holy Spirit, Baptism purifies, sanctifies, justifies, to form from many only one Body in Christ (Cf. 1 Corinthians 6:11; 12:13). The chrismal anointing expresses it, “which is sign of the royal priesthood of the baptized and of his aggregation to the community of the people of God“ (Rite of the Baptism of Children, Introduction, n. 18, 3). Therefore, the priest anoints with the sacred chrism the head of every baptized, after having pronounced these words, which explain its meaning: “God himself consecrates you with the chrism of salvation, so that, inserted in Christ, Priest, King and Prophet, you are ever members of His Body for eternal life” (Ibid., n. 71).
The Pope is being perfectly logical, based on his erroneous idea that baptism in water imparts the “new birth” it must be eternal and can never be lost: however this is considered the Catholic heresy of “presumption.” It also ignore the fact that no Catholic can trust his baptism because he doesn’t know whether the priest that conducted it had the requisite “intention” in mind – and if that element was lacking the baptism failed and the Catholic remains damned in “original sin.”
In reality, salvation is not by a baptism ritual – it is by belief in Christ. Our baptism is spiritual “into Christ” not into water. The water is just an outward ritual. But having been saved by faith, you are given the new birth, and therefore eternally saved.
“For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.” 1 Corinthians 11:29.
What does this verse mean?
There are (at least) 3 major superstitions regarding Communion that should be avoided:
(1) that a communion service is a re-sacrifice of Jesus Christ and effective to obtain forgiveness of sins;
(2) that the communion bread is the Son of God and should therefore be worshipped;
(3) that Christ is somehow within the bread and therefore eating the bread is receiving Christ.
All three superstitions are based upon scriptural misunderstandings.
Early Reformers, like Jan Hus and John Wycliff, were burned at the stake for their deviations from Rome’s blasphemous ‘transubstantiation’ doctrine, yet many Protestants moved slowly toward a complete and proper understanding of the Lord’s Supper – to one based on scripture alone and free from pagan superstitions. Rejecting Rome’s ‘host’ worshipping idolatry, and their false sacrifice of the mass, many Protestants nevertheless retained notions of Christ’s ‘real presence’ as spiritually present inside the communion elements.
Jesus Christ’s real human body was the ‘bread’ given at the cross of Calvary for the sins of the world. The bread in communion is just a commemorative act – it is only a symbolic remembrance of what Jesus did.
So the ‘bread’ that saves us is only Jesus Christ’s body that he gave for us on the cross. It is received only by faith in the preaching of the gospel (John 6:28-29). The gospel message is that Christ Jesus died for our sins and rose again (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
In contrast, the bread taken in a communion service is just an occasion when the people of God can outwardly demonstrate and commemorate their commonly held faith as members of Christ’s spiritual body (1 Corinthians 10:16-22; 11:17-34). The symbolism of the bread shows Jesus’ death, and by eating it together, that shows the communion of the people of God who have all together trusted in Christ. The ceremony is not called a ‘sacrament’ – it is called an ‘ordinance’ (1 Corinthians 11:2).
1 Corinthians 11:29 does not mandate that we recognize Christ’s body inside pieces of bread, but rather that our communion services should be conducted in an orderly fashion so that proper symbolism of the bread and wine can be clearly discerned.
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