The Catholic gospel is a complex system of sacramental faith and works in which God’s grace is doled out sacrament by sacrament. The central sacraments are baptism and the Mass. The Catechism clearly teaches that water baptism and the literal eating and drinking of Christ’s body and blood justifies the participant, NOT faith in Christ’s finished work upon the cross two thousand years ago. Catholic baptism “justifies” infants and adults alike through the sprinkling of “holy water.” The Catholic cross is the crucifix upon which their false Christ is daily re-crucified for the remission of sins as faithful Catholics eat and drink “justification” in the unholy celebration of Mass. Confession to priests and praying to Mary as the “Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, Mediatrix,Mother of Mercy, the All Holy One” only further blasphemes the name of Christ and His Gospel, “for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). You claim “the liturgy will include a Creed that goes to the heart of Gospel and will include words spoken and sung that take us to the Cross.” In reality their Creed cuts the heart out of the Gospel and blasphemes the finished work of Christ on the cross. The Roman Catholic Creed is a long list of departures from “the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3).
You have been commanded to defend the faith, but have preferred to promote those who have departed from the faith. The sixth point of the Grace Brethren Statement of Faith says:
SALVATION. A complete and eternal salvation by God's grace alone received as the gift of God through personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and His finished work (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5-7; 1 Peter 1:18-19).
In your continual promotion of the ministry of pope and priest alike, you trample our Biblical position on SALVATION beneath your feet in the dung of man’s tradition and papal decree. You insult the lives, testimonies, and shed blood of the martyrs that died for the true Gospel that our statement of faith declares. You insult Christ in bowing before the so-called Vicar of Christ (John Paul II) and his priests as brothers in the ministry of the Gospel.
In the mid-portion of your letter you reveal a disturbing compassion for the plight of the overtaxed false teacher, sorrowing over the heavy load of the priest as he carries his false gospel and false Christ (transubstantiation) from church to church. As if that wasn’t enough, you extend your apostate compassion beyond the individual heretic to the entire body of priest heretics, lamenting the “huge crisis of pastoral care in the Catholic Church.” You effectively wrap your caring arms around the great body of heretical Catholic clergy and pull them to your pastoral bosom, inviting the reader to do the same. It is an appalling affront to Christ and His Gospel. Let us pray for the demise of the Roman Catholic Church and her heresies, not swoon over her diminished priesthood. Oh to God, that every Catholic church would forever shut its doors, and that every priest would cease to propagate the soul-damning heresy of the priesthood.
You close your letter with one main criticism of the more recent Catholic service that you attended. You could have criticized a hundred heresies, but you only found one real point of serious criticism, Latin liturgy. Apparently you wanted to better understand the heresies being celebrated so that you could more fully enter into the experience. The lack of discernment evidenced is astounding.
There is a growing spirit of apostasy in churches of our day. Those who aren’t boldly going apostate themselves seem to be all too willing to allow others to sell out the faith. That is simply a more cowardly and comfortable (ecumenical) form of apostasy.
Now therefore, fear the LORD, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the LORD! And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. (Joshua 24:14-15)
It is difficult to understand why your pastoral staff and elder board sit silent as you continue to promote the pope and the Catholic Church as messengers of the Gospel for which Christ died (ONCE, not daily). It is difficult to understand why the believers at Grace Community Church of Seal Beach abide your ongoing apostasy. It is difficult to understand why your apostate, pope-promoting article (“One Evangelical's Gratitude for John Paul II”) is casually overlooked by FGBC pastors and leaders. You no doubt agree that we do not understand, for you have already boldly stated in your 2005 article, “Obsolete attitudes and teachings are readily found among Evangelicals, as if the Second Vatican Council never happened.” Here is what you fail to understand: the Gospel is not “obsolete,” and the Second Vatican Council and the official Catechism of the Catholic Church dogmatically declare a “different gospel, which is not another”
(Galatians 1:6-7). You must understand this: we will not join you as you give away the crown jewels of the King of Kings, nor will we sit idly by and watch in silence.
“I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.” (Galatians 1:6-9)