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Thread: Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

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    Default Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

    Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?


    What Catholic Believe



    “Catholics do not have a cultic understanding of God. They know Him as Father, Son and Holy Spirit as revealed in Holy Scriptures, with Jesus the Second Person of the triune Godhead, at one with and equal to the Father, who died for our sins, and who has given us His Holy Spirit.”
    -Dr. Bill Bright Founder and President Campus Crusade for Christ International

    “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
    -Romans 10 9-13


    The Catechism of the Catholic Church CCC will be referenced thorough by bolded numbers. Catholics believe both the new and old testaments of the bible are the word of God. They believe Jesus is the messiah our Savior who died the cross for the sins of the world, was buried, and God raised him three days later. They know him as the son of God in a personal relationship and as Lord.

    no one can say, "Jesus is Lord," except by the Holy Spirit.
    -1 Corinthians 12.3

    "Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God"
    -I John 5:1

    This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God
    -1 john 4.2


    CCC 424
    Moved by the grace of the Holy Spirit and drawn by the Father, we believe in Jesus and confess: 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. On the rock of this faith confessed by St. Peter, Christ built his Church.
    CCC 1130 In the sacraments of Christ the Church already receives the guarantee of her inheritance and even now shares in everlasting life, while "awaiting our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus." The "Spirit and the Bride say, 'Come . . . Come, Lord Jesus!'"


    Catholics ask for forgiveness provided by his work on the cross for their sins knowing justification only comes from Christs work on the cross.

    "Christ paid that in one fell swoop 2,000 years ago, no more eternal payment of the eternal debt of our sins is needed""
    -James Akin the salvation controversy p42


    CCC 571
    God's saving plan was accomplished "once for all" by the redemptive death of his Son Jesus Christ

    They understand God as the tribune God of the bible. Often at a catholic mass the act of faith is stated by all “O my God, I firmly believe that you are one God in three Divine Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; I believe that your Divine Son became man, and died for our sins, and that He will come to judge the living and the dead.” They have faith in that God of the bible that Hebrews 11 says is what saves us [not proper theology]. This is the basic gospel message and what makes one a christian. The Nicean creed [spoke at mass] has been the standard for what constitutes a christian for thousands of years.

    Nicean creed
    I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
    And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made. Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets. And I believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

    "When you talk about Pentecostals, charismatics, evangelicals, fundamentalists, Catholics, Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians ... Well they would all say we believe in the trinity, we believe in the Bible, we believe in the resurrection, we believe salvation is through Jesus Christ. These are the big issues."......"Now there's still real differences, no doubt about that. But the most important thing is if you love Jesus, we're on the same team."
    -Rick Warren



    Important Clarifications

    Catholic vs Protestant Definitions of Salvation, Justification, and by Faith Alone

    “Protestants and Catholics often talk past each other, failing to precise the ways that the other uses words and phrases...often the two groups are led astray by terminology. They often perceive themselves to be in disagreement when actually they are not.”
    -Jimmy Akin the Drama of Salvation how God Rescues you from Your Sins and brings you to Eternal Life Catholic Answers press San Diego 2015


    When a protestant talks of salvation we generally mean justification. What puts us as sinners in a right standing with God. We separate sanctification or any sort of works or fruits of our conversion from justification. When we use the term salvation it corresponds to Catholic's understanding of justification. In this way we are in agreement that justification comes by grace alone through faith in Jesus work on the cross. However to Catholics “salvation” also includes what protestants would call sanctification. Since Catholics use a separate definition than do protestants, this leads to confusion and false understandings. Add to that the separate meanings for the term “by faith alone” and separate views of the salvation/justification/ sanctification process as a one time event or past, present, and future, and this clouds the issue further. Along with Catholics distinction of temporal and eternal sins, and there is no wonder for the confusion.

    Catholics also use salvation to reefer to temporal salvation [Gen 49.18-19 Ex 14 3-4 DT 23.12 1 sam 12.7 matt 14 28-31 8 23-25 Luke 1 68-71] and thus man can be a temporal savior [ 2 kings 13 4-5 neh 9 26-27 obed 21] and can provide temporal atonement proverbs 16.6. In Catholicism if you help others become saved such as preaching the Gospel you are agents of Christ and in a sense, saviors [Rom 11 13-14 1 Corinthians 7.16 9.22 1 Tim 4.16 James 5 19-20 Jude 22-23] but only god can provide eternal atonement and salvation.

    Salvation one Time Event or Past Present and Future?

    Protestants view salvation [justification] as a one time past singe event, the time we were saved and converted. We than go through the process of sanctification as we walk the christian life. Catholics definition of salvation includes justification and sanctification. Thus as a past, present, and future process. Or “I was saved, I am being saved, I will be saved.” [ 1 peter 8-9 Phil 2.12 Rom 13.11 1 Corinthians 3.15 5.5 Eph 1.14] ] Because they view their original conversion as one and the same process as the grace that brings about sanctification, there is no separation.

    CCC 1989 The first work of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conversion, effecting justification in accordance with Jesus' proclamation at the beginning of the Gospel: "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high. "Justification is not only the remission of sins, but also the sanctification and renewal of the interior man.
    CCC 163 Faith makes us taste in advance the light of the beatific vision, the goal of our journey here below. Then we shall see God "face to face", "as he is".So faith is already the beginning of eternal life: When we contemplate the blessings of faith even now, as if gazing at a reflection in a mirror, it is as if we already possessed the wonderful things which our faith assures us we shall one day enjoy.

    Are you Saved?

    A protestant using his terminology will ask a catholic if they are saved seeing if they rely on works. A catholic who views being saved as the actual future moment God declares them just and they enter paradise , is asking them if they will persevere until the end, something they cannot know with absolute certainty. Catholics see sanctification as a continuation of justification and as such will necessarily give a works response to show the evidence or fruits of grace at work in their lives.

    CCC 2005 Since it belongs to the supernatural order, grace escapes our experience and cannot be known except by faith. We cannot therefore rely on our feelings or our works to conclude that we are justified and saved.56 However, according to the Lord's words "Thus you will know them by their fruits"57 - reflection on God's blessings in our life and in the lives of the saints offers us a guarantee that grace is at work in us and spurs us on to an ever greater faith and an attitude of trustful poverty.

    The protestant will than walk away thinking the catholic is not trusting in Jesus alone but their own works for salvation and conclude the catholic church is teaching a false gospel. However this is not true, it is a confusion from separate definition on salvation.

    “If a Catholic tells a Protestant, “We believe in justification by faith and works,” it will cause the Protestant to believe something about Catholic doctrine that is not true. Remember: Protestants use the term justification to refer to an event at the beginning of the Christian life where God forgives us and declares us righteous. As a result, a Protestant will think that the Catholic is saying that we need to do works in order to come to God and be forgiven. This will confirm his biases against the Church and play into all those stereotypes left over from the Reformation—the ones where Catholics are depicted as holding a false gospel according to which we need to earn our place before God by our own efforts. But the Catholic Church does not teach this. According to Trent, “none of those things that precede justification, whether faith or works, merit the grace of justification. ‘For, if by grace, it is not now by works, otherwise,’ as the Apostle says, ‘grace is no more grace’” (DJ 8, quoting Rom. 11:6).”
    -Jimmy Akin Faith and Works Catholic Answers


    Do Catholics Reject by Faith Alone ?

    “Man is unable to "justify" himself with his own actions, but can only truly become "just" before God because God confers his "justice" upon him, uniting him to Christ his Son. And man obtains this union through faith. In this sense, St Paul tells us: not our deeds, but rather faith renders us "just". This faith, however, is not a thought, an opinion, an idea. This faith is communion with Christ, which the Lord gives to us, and thus becomes life, becomes conformity with him. Or to use different words faith, if it is true, if it is real, becomes love, becomes charity, is expressed in charity. A faith without charity, without this fruit, would not be true faith. It would be a dead faith.
    -Pope Benedict the 16th The Doctrine of Justification: The Apostle's Teaching on Faith and Works

    "If any one saith, that man is truly absolved from his sins and justified, because that he assuredly believed himself absolved and justified; or, that no one is truly justified but he who believes himself justified; and that, by this faith alone, absolution and justification are effected; let him be anathema."
    -Cannon 14 Council of Trent Decree on Justification

    “The only time the council of Trent's decree on justification quotes James statement that “a man is justified by works and not by faith alone [JM 2.24] is in reference to ongoing growth in righteousness [sanctification]”
    -Jimmy Akin the Drama of Salvation how God Rescues you from Your Sins and brings you to Eternal Life Catholic Answers press San Diego 2015



    Catholics reject salvation by “faith alone” as a term and from their perspective, a correct conclusion. The term is only used once in the bible and in James 2.24 reads, “a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.”

    “14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless?21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.” -James 2 12-14


    James rejects a mental faith or belief in the truth that does not bear any fruit. A true conversion of the heart and making Jesus Lord of your life will necessarily bear fruit. A mental faith or belief [as even the demons have] without accepting Jesus as savior, does not save, theology, does not save. Trent objected to only the radical elements of the reformation such as a mental faith alone. In fact salvation by “faith alone” had been used by Catholics as various times through history. Catholic apologist Jimmy Akin explains the council of Trents rejection of by faith alone as

    “was never applied to all Protestants as a group, and it doesn’t apply to anyone today. The use of the term does, though, imply an authoritative rejection of the “faith alone” formula—when it is used to mean a specific thing. The canon doesn’t say, “If anyone says that the sinner is justified by faith alone, let him be anathema.” Instead, it rejects a particular use of the formula, whereby someone “understands that nothing else is required to cooperate in order to obtain the grace of justification, and that it is not in any way necessary that he be prepared and disposed by the action of his own will.” Trent is therefore concerned to reject “faith alone” when it’s used to say that you don’t need to in any way cooperate with God’s grace, that a merely intellectual faith would save you.And that’s correct. Merely agreeing with the truths of the theology is not enough to be saved. As James puts it: “You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder” (James 2:17)



    So Catholics rightly reject this mental by faith alone. They do not reject a saving faith that expresses itself in Love.

    “Christ, and it is he who makes us just. Being just simply means being with Christ and in Christ. And this suffices. Further observances are no longer necessary. For this reason Luther's phrase: "faith alone" is true, if it is not opposed to faith in charity, in love. Faith is looking at Christ, entrusting oneself to Christ, being united to Christ, conformed to Christ, to his life. And the form, the life of Christ, is love; hence to believe is to conform to Christ and to enter into his love. So it is that in the Letter to the Galatians in which he primarily developed his teaching on justification St Paul speaks of faith that works through love (cf. Gal 5: 14).”
    -Pope Benedict the 16th The Doctrine of Justification: from Works to Faith


    “Good works flow from justification they are not something we need to do to get into a state of grace"
    -Jimmy Akin the salvation drama


    Or the reverse for Catholics.

    “Since Sanctification is separated from Justification Protestants correctly say, using their terminology, that Justification is by faith alone – works they do in Sanctification do not belong to (their) Justification.... Catholics do believe in Justification by faith but not in Justification by faith alone, because Catholics understand Justification to be a process, not one-time event.”
    -Jimmy Akin Faith and Works Catholic Answers



    Joint Declaration Among Protestants and Catholics on Justification

    “Thus the doctrinal condemnations of the 16th century, in so far as they relate to the doctrine of justification, appear in a new light: The teaching of the Lutheran churches presented in this Declaration does not fall under the condemnations from the Council of Trent. The condemnations in the Lutheran Confessions do not apply to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church presented in this Declaration.”
    -JOINT DECLARATIONON THE DOCTRINE OF JUSTIFICATION by the Lutheran World Federation
    and the Catholic Church


    In 1999 a joint declaration on the doctrine of justification was given after 30 years of work by both catholic and Lutheran scholars [ later in 2006 adopted by the world Methodist council] and approved by the Vatican.

    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/po...ration_en.html

    They found basic agreements on justification between the groups. The differences were on “emphasis rather than fundamental disagreements” and found that Lutherans theology when translated to catholic language, fits within catholic theology and does not fall under the condemnation of Trent and thus the churches are not separated over the issue of justification, but for other reasons only.


    Catholic Theology- Justification Comes From Christ Alone by Grace Alone

    "Only Christ can make atonement for us...only he can deliver us from eternal consequences of our sins"
    -James Akin The Salvation Controversy p25

    “Jesus Christ made atonement for us and merited the grace by which we are saved.”
    -Ludwig Ott fundamentals of catholic Dogma

    “All who claim the title "Christian" will be able to agree on the following two truths: salvation is by grace alone (Ephesians 2:8) and salvation is through Christ alone (Acts 4:12). These biblical facts will be our foundation as we explain the teaching of the Catholic Church. ...The Catholic Church has never taught we "earn" our salvation. It is an inheritance (Galatians 5:21), freely given to anyone who becomes a child of God (1 John 3:1)
    -Sal Ciresi catholic writer



    Despite what is often believed by Protestants Catholics believe that their justification comes by grace alone, through faith, in Christ alone.


    CCC 618
    Apart from the cross there is no other ladder by which we may get to heaven.
    CCC 1996 Our justification comes from the grace of God. Grace is favor, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life Therefore if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself. Justification is at the same time the acceptance of God's righteousness through faith in Jesus Christ.
    CCC 1992 Justification has been merited for us by the Passion of Christ who offered himself on the cross as a living victim, holy and pleasing to God, and whose blood has become the instrument of atonement for the sins of all men. Justification is conferred in Baptism, the sacrament of faith. It conforms us to the righteousness of God, who makes us inwardly just by the power of his mercy. Its purpose is the glory of God and of Christ, and the gift of eternal life:

    But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from law, although the law and the prophets bear witness to it, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, they are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as an expiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins; it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies him who has faith in Jesus.

    CCC 617 The Council of Trent emphasizes the unique character of Christ's sacrifice as "the source of eternal salvation" and teaches that "his most holy Passion on the wood of the cross merited justification for us." And the Church venerates his cross as she sings: "Hail, O Cross, our only hope."
    CCC 161 Believing in Jesus Christ and in the One who sent him for our salvation is necessary for obtaining that salvation."Since "without faith it is impossible to please (God) " and to attain to the fellowship of his sons, therefore without faith no one has ever attained justification, nor will anyone obtain eternal life 'But he who endures to the end.'" CCC 2003 Grace is first and foremost the gift of the Spirit who justifies and sanctifies us
    Also see CCC 1998 432 741

    “it is the central work of god who was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, all we have to do is accept it and receive it"
    -William E Rabior Find forgiveness acsw catholic pamphlet p 15

    “Lord Jesus Christ...merited justification for us by his most holy passion on the wood of the cross.”
    -Council of Trent Decree on Justification chapter 7



    Personal Relationship

    "Faith opens us to knowing and welcoming the real identity of Jesus, his newness and oneness, his word, as a source of life, in order to live a personal relationship with him. Knowledge of the faith grows, it grows with the desire to find the way and in the end it is a gift of God who does not reveal himself to us as an abstract thing without a face or a name, because faith responds to a Person who wants to enter into a relationship of deep love with us and to involve our whole life."
    - Pope Benedict XVI (Sunday, 14 August 2011)

    "I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ, or at least an openness to letting him encounter them; I ask all of you to do this unfailingly each day."
    -Pope Francis (Joy of the Gospel)


    "This is eternal life that they may know you the only true god and Jesus Christ whom you have sent""in his son and through him, he invites men to become, in the holy spirit,his adopted children and thus heirs of his blessed life"" the life of man to know and love him"
    -CCC Prologue


    Catholics seek and have a personal relationship with Jesus. The Mass, which to Catholics is the highest form of worship and prayer, begins with the entire congregation bowing their heads in silence and asking the Lord to forgive our sins. The CCC 687 reads “while those who believe in Christ know the Spirit because he dwells with them.” And CCC 299 says “ man, himself created in the "image of God" and called to a personal relationship with God. The CCC 2558 reads “This mystery, then, requires that the faithful believe in it, that they celebrate it, and that they live from it in a vital and personal relationship with the living and true God. This relationship is prayer.” And, from a Catholic perspective, nothing is more personal than receiving the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

    "what is both necessary and sufficient for being put right with god is a proper relationship with Christ. He is the one who saves"
    -Catholic James Akin The salvation controversy p 109

    "I really believe in Jesus, Jesus for me is not just a abstract idea, hes a personal friend"
    -Dom Helder Camara archbishop Invitation a catholic learning guide for adults third edition 2006

    “The short story is this, I read the words of Jesus Christ and I realized that they were true. I used to think that I had found God, but I believe it is more accurate to say that He found me. And it happened because people were brave enough to plant seeds of the Gospel in my life. ...But instead, I decided to do something new in politics, I told the audience the truth -- that the most significant moment of my life was when I turned it over to Jesus Christ and acknowledged Him as my Savior
    -Bobby Jindal catholic Governor


    "the holy ghost himself who dwells in the souls of the just"
    -Ludwig Ott fundamentals of catholic dogma

    CCC 426 "At the heart of catechesis we find, in essence, a Person, the Person of Jesus of Nazareth, the only Son from the Father. . .who suffered and died for us and who now, after rising, is living with us forever." To catechize is "to reveal in the Person of Christ the whole of God's eternal design reaching fulfillment in that Person. It is to seek to understand the meaning of Christ's actions and words and of the signs worked by him." Catechesis aims at putting "people . . . in communion . . . with Jesus Christ: only he can lead us to the love of the Father in the Spirit and make us share in the life of the Holy Trinity."
    CCC 260 O my God, Trinity whom I adore, help me forget myself entirely so to establish myself in you, unmovable and peaceful as if my soul were already in eternity. May nothing be able to trouble my peace or make me leave you, O my unchanging God, but may each minute bring me more deeply into your mystery! Grant my soul peace. Make it your heaven, your beloved dwelling and the place of your rest. May I never abandon you there, but may I be there, whole and entire, completely vigilant in my faith, entirely adoring, and wholly given over to your creative action

    -Act of Spiritual Communion

    My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

    Conversion of the Heart/ Born Again

    “Conversion means accepting, by a personal decision, the saving sovereignty of Christ and becoming his disciple. The Church calls all people to this conversion..."
    -Pope John Paul II's 1990 encyclical section 46

    "Catholic leaders throughout the world serve as his examples of truly born again, dedicated Christians"
    -Chuck Colson the Body

    “If they were not born again in Christ, they would not be justified, since in that new birth there is bestowed upon them, through the merits of his passion, the grace by witch they are made just.”
    -Trent decree on Justification chapter 3


    Catholics are called to a true conversion of the heart by the grace of God. They are to look to Jesus as providing forgiveness for their sinful hearts and the grace of God to convert their hearts to a heart that will follow him.

    CCC 1966 Therefore if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself.
    CCC 526 we must be "born from above" or "born of God". Only when Christ is formed in us will the mystery of Christmas be fulfilled in us
    CCC 1432 The human heart is heavy and hardened. God must give man a new heart.25 Conversion is first of all a work of the grace of God who makes our hearts return to him: "Restore us to thyself, O LORD, that we may be restored!"26 God gives us the strength to begin anew. It is in discovering the greatness of God's love that our heart is shaken by the horror and weight of sin and begins to fear offending God by sin and being separated from him. The human heart is converted by looking upon him whom our sins have pierced:27
    Let us fix our eyes on Christ's blood and understand how precious it is to his Father, for, poured out for our salvation it has brought to the whole world the grace of repentance.
    CCC 1427 Jesus calls to conversion. This call is an essential part of the proclamation of the kingdom: "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel." In the Church's preaching this call is addressed first to those who do not yet know Christ and his Gospel. Also, Baptism is the principal place for the first and fundamental conversion. It is by faith in the Gospel and by Baptism that one renounces evil and gains salvation, that is, the forgiveness of all sins and the gift of new life.

    Repentance/Sinners Prayer/ Asking God for Forgiveness

    “Who can say he is not a sinner? Nobody. We all are,”
    -Pope Francis

    “Secondly, I must acknowledge and confess that I, too, am a sinner....to point out an awful truth: That no matter how self-righteous and holy we think we might be, we are all just sinners.”
    -Father Timothy Norris, pastor of St. Paul in Ham Lake, delivered at Sunday Mass, Oct. 27

    “Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”
    -Acts 2.38


    Doctrinal the church teaches Catholics they are sinners and in need of gods forgiveness. Catholics often ask for forgiveness for their sin and are contently remained of their sin and to seek gods Mercy. At every Mass they say the lord prayer and ask God “forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.” The Fatima Prayer is often said at mass by all as “O My Jesus, forgive us our sins.” The eastern prayer of the heart reads "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."

    3 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other
    -Luke 18 13-14


    "from the earliest of days the church has made the tax collectors prayer its own, in the penitential rite at mass, we pray lord have mercy.....then like him, you too can go home to haven justified [Luke 18.14]"
    -The Word Among us meditations sat march 29 lent 2014 p 51


    CCC 1697 a catechesis of sin and forgiveness, for unless man acknowledges that he is a sinner he cannot know the truth about himself, which is a condition for acting justly; and without the offer of forgiveness he would not be able to bear this truth;
    CCC 1847 "God created us without us: but he did not will to save us without us." To receive his mercy, we must admit our faults. "If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
    CCC 827 All members of the Church, including her ministers, must acknowledge that they are sinners. In everyone, the weeds of sin will still be mixed with the good wheat of the Gospel until the end of time. Hence the Church gathers sinners already caught up in Christ's salvation but still on the way to holiness:
    CCC 2092 There are two kinds of presumption. Either man presumes upon his own capacities, (hoping to be able to save himself without help from on high), or he presumes upon God's almighty power or his mercy (hoping to obtain his forgiveness without conversion and glory without merit).
    150 It is just to entrust oneself wholly to god.


    Also see CCC 431-433


    Common Catholic Prayers/ Prayer of the Penitent
    My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have sinned against you whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In his name, my God, have mercy. Remember, Lord, your compassion and mercy which you showed long ago. Do not recall the sins and failings of my youth. In your mercy remember me, Lord, because of your goodness.


    Prayer of the Penitent, The Rite of the Sacrament of Reconciliation

    Father of mercy, like the prodigal son I return to you and say: "I have sinned against you and am no longer worthy to be called your son." Christ Jesus, Savior of the world, I pray with the repentant thief to whom you promised Paradise: "Lord, remember me in your kingdom." Holy Spirit, fountain of love, I call on you with trust: "Purify my heart, and help me to walk as a child of light." Lord Jesus, you opened the eyes of theblind, healed the sick, forgave the sinful woman, and after Peter's denial confirmed him in your love. Listen to my prayer: forgive all my sins, renew your love in my heart, help me to live in perfect unity with my fellow Christians that I may proclaim your saving power to all the world.

    The Anima Christi
    Soul of Christ, sanctify me Body of Christ, save me Blood of Christ, inebriate me Water from Christ's side, wash me Passion of Christ, strengthen me O good Jesus, hear me Within Thy wounds hide me Suffer me not to be separated from Thee From the malicious enemy defend me In the hour of my death call me And bid me come unto Thee That I may praise Thee with Thy saints and with Thy angels Forever and ever Amen

    Act of Hope Jesus is lord
    O my God, relying on your infinite mercy and promises, I hope to obtain pardon of my sins, the help of your grace, and life everlasting, through the merits of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Redeemer. Amen.


    “Father, Forgive.” At every Mass, the priest holds up the chalice and, in the name of Jesus, says, “This is the chalice of my Blood, the Blood of the new and eternal covenant, which will be poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.” Now, imagine yourself before St. Peter at the gate of heaven. Peter opens the scroll of your life, and you see that the list of your sins stretches on and on. Overwhelmed, you say, “I can’t believe I committed so many sins!” You fear that things won’t go well for you. But as Peter reads out the first sin, it disappears from the scroll. Then the next one disappears. And the next one. And the next one. God’s mercy has triumphed, and you are completely forgiven! Forgiveness is a father running to meet his prodigal son—who has rejected him, left him, and hurt him—with open arms. It is God comparing himself to Hosea, a prophet who took his wife back after she had committed adultery (Hosea 1–2). It’s Jesus wanting to give a Samaritan woman a share in his living water despite the fact that she had been divorced five times and was living with another man out of wedlock (John 4). It’s Jesus, hanging on the cross in agony, praying, “Father, forgive them” (Luke 23:34). No one on the face of the earth has been hurt as much as God. No one has been treated more unjustly. No one has more of a right to withhold forgiveness than our Creator. Yet he chose to forgive us. And he chooses to forgive us over and over and over again. He sent his only Son to us to make the ultimate sacrifice of his life—all so that he could make things right between us (John 3:16-17). Grace Fills the Void. No matter who you are, no matter how great your sins are, God loves you. He forgives you. He wants to heal you and draw you close to his heart.
    -The word among us daily meditations march 5-April 20 lent 2014 Father forgive them



    Saved by Baptism?

    And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
    -Mark 1.4

    and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also--not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ,
    -1 peter 3.21

    And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.’
    -Acts 22.16


    "See where you are baptized, see where Baptism comes from, if not from the cross of Christ, from his death. There is the whole mystery: he died for you. In him you are redeemed, in him you are saved. "
    -St Ambrose quoted in the CCC



    In baptism Catholics seek by faith the forgiveness of Jesus being applied to them by grace alone not a work of merit, but grace given them by Jesus death on the cross. They see baptism as the mode in witch God normally applies the work of Christ on the cross to believers. They site the versus above as well as Rom 6 3-4 and Col 2 11-12.

    “it is Christ himself at work, it is he who baptizes, he who acts in his sacraments”
    -Invitation a catholic learning guide for adults third edition 2006 sacraments p45

    CCC 1127 Celebrated worthily in faith, the sacraments confer the grace that they signify.48 They are efficacious because in them Christ himself is at work: it is he who baptizes, he who acts in his sacraments in order to communicate the grace that each sacrament signifies.
    CCC 977 Our Lord tied the forgiveness of sins to faith and Baptism: "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved." Baptism is the first and chief sacrament of forgiveness of sins because it unites us with Christ, who died for our sins and rose for our justification, so that "we too might walk in newness of life."
    CCC 1253 Baptism is the sacrament of faith.
    CCC 1263 By Baptism all sins are forgiven, original sin and all personal sins, as well as all punishment for sin. In those who have been reborn nothing remains that would impede their entry into the Kingdom of God, neither Adam's sin, nor personal sin, nor the consequences of sin, the gravest of which is separation from God."
    CCC 1227 According to the Apostle Paul, the believer enters through Baptism into communion with Christ's death, is buried with him, and rises with him:
    Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. The baptized have "put on Christ." Through the Holy Spirit, Baptism is a bath that purifies, justifies, and sanctifies.
    Also see CCC 1265 1694 1987

    Works and Salvation a Catholic Understanding

    “If any one saith, that man may be justified before God by his own works, whether done through the teaching of human nature, or that of the law, without the grace of God through Jesus Christ; let him be anathema.
    -Council of Trent Declaration on Justification Cannon 1

    “On the mercy of my redeemer I rely for salvation and on his merits; not on the works I have done in obedience to his precepts, for even these, I fear, a fallacy a mixture will render unavailing, and cause to be rejected.
    -Charles Carroll the only Roman Catholic signer of the Declaration

    “Christ, not us, is the meritorious cause of our justification.”
    -Jimmy Akin the Drama of Salvation how God Rescues you from Your Sins and brings you to Eternal Life Catholic Answers press San Diego 2015


    Catholics do no works of merit and cannot merit justification before god. The only “works” they do are cooperation with gods grace he gave to them to sanctify them. This is all a work of God and his grace freely given them and all credit goes to God. However true repentance and conversion will produce good works that God rewards to the believers to eternal life [ Rom 6.22 2 6-7 Gal 6 6-10 Matt 3 8-10].

    “It follows, then, dearly beloved, beyond all doubt, that as your good life is nothing else than God's grace, so also the eternal life which is the recompense of a good life is the grace of God; moreover it is given gratuitously, even as that is given gratuitously to which it is given. But that to which it is given is solely and simply grace.”
    -St. Augustine of Hippo in A.D. 426 or 427


    CCC 2003 Grace is first and foremost the gift of the Spirit who justifies and sanctifies us
    CCC 1999 The grace of Christ is the gratuitous gift that God makes to us of his own life, infused by the Holy Spirit into our soul to heal it of sin and to sanctify it. It is the sanctifying or deifying grace received in Baptism. It is in us the source of the work of sanctification:48 (1966) Therefore if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself.49
    CCC 2007 With regard to God, there is no strict right to any merit on the part of man. Between God and us there is an immeasurable inequality, for we have received everything from him, our Creator.
    CCC 2092 There are two kinds of presumption. Either man presumes upon his own capacities, (hoping to be able to save himself without help from on high), or he presumes upon God's almighty power or his mercy (hoping to obtain his forgiveness without conversion and glory without merit).
    CCC 2011 The charity of Christ is the source in us of all our merits before God. Grace, by uniting us to Christ in active love, ensures the supernatural quality of our acts and consequently their merit before God and before men. The saints have always had a lively awareness that their merits were pure grace.
    2009...Our merits are God’s gifts.”
    CCC 2001 The preparation of man for the reception of grace is already a work of grace. This latter is needed to arouse and sustain our collaboration in justification through faith, and in sanctification through charity. God brings to completion in us what he has begun, “since he who completes his work by cooperating with our will began by working so that we might will it:”50 (490)Indeed we also work, but we are only collaborating with God who works, for his mercy has gone before us. It has gone before us so that we may be healed, and follows us so that once healed, we may be given life; it goes before us so that we may be called, and follows us so that we may be glorified; it goes before us so that we may live devoutly, and follows us so that we may always live with God: for without him we can do nothing.
    CCC 2010 Since the initiative belongs to God in the order of grace, no one can merit the initial grace of forgiveness and justification, at the beginning of conversion. Moved by the Holy Spirit and by charity, we can then merit for ourselves and for others the graces needed for our sanctification, for the increase of grace and charity, and for the attainment of eternal life.
    CCC 1430 Jesus' call to conversion and penance, like that of the prophets before him, does not aim first at outward works, "sackcloth and ashes," fasting and mortification, but at the conversion of the heart, interior conversion. Without this, such penances remain sterile and false; however, interior conversion urges expression in visible signs, gestures and works of penance.
    2027 No one can merit the initial grace which is at the origin of conversion. Moved by the Holy Spirit, we can merit for ourselves and for others all the graces needed to attain eternal life, as well as necessary temporal goods.
    CCC 1828 The practice of the moral life animated by charity gives to the Christian the spiritual freedom of the CCC children of God. He no longer stands before God as a slave, in servile fear, or as a mercenary looking for wages, but as a son responding to the love of him who "first loved us":106
    If we turn away from evil out of fear of punishment, we are in the position of slaves. If we pursue the enticement of wages, . . . we resemble mercenaries. Finally if we obey for the sake of the good itself and out of love for him who commands . . . we are in the position of children.
    2008 The merit of man before God in the Christian life arises from the fact that God has freely chosen to associate man with the work of his grace. The fatherly action of God is first on his own initiative, and then follows man’s free acting through his collaboration, so that the merit of good works is to be attributed in the first place to the grace of God, then to the faithful. Man’s merit, moreover, itself is due to God, for his good actions proceed in Christ, from the predispositions and assistance given by the Holy Spirit. (306, 155, 970)

    1700 With the help of grace they grow in virtue , avoid sin, and if they sin they entrust themselves as did the prodigal son1 to the mercy of our Father in heaven . In this way they attain to the perfection of charity
    Also see CCC 1695 1687


    What if Catholics Teach False Doctrine on Salvation?



    Messianic Jewish author Tim Hegg said it was foreign to Jewish thought that mental belief saves you or agreeing with a creed. They would receive a saved person by the spirit of god within the person as proof of an ongoing relationship with god. A Jewish view of faith always included action or their fruit [Matthew 7.16-17], change, and repentance. In Jewish thought motive is important and works of the heart. And as Chuck Missler said “its not what you know, but who you know.” Hebrews 11 shows that men in the Old Testament were not saved by a proper knowledge, but by faith in god. This faith was shown by action in various ways not by proper statements on doctrine. William Lane Craig in on Catholicism Doctrine vs. Practice argues that Catholics don't view their salvation as coming from merits but grace, and that Catholics are a christian denomination despite what he sees as differences on justification in doctrine. When I was first saved for the following few years I was a oneness Pentecostal [non trinitarian] not because I rejected the Trinity, but because that is what I thought the trinity was. This is a “heretical” view, yet I was fully christian.

    In Matthew 5 17-20 Jesus speaks of false teachers on the Torah, yet still calls them saved, the “least in the kingdom.” In 1 Corinthians 3 5-16 Paul speaks of people whose foundation was built on Jesus and have the spirit within them, yet they added works on top, those works will be “burnt up” but the individual will still be saved. Galatians 2 was written to believers who were adding works to faith. In acts 15.5 it reads

    5 Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, “The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to keep the law of Moses.”

    They were ruled incorrect yet were still believers despite they added works to salvation. The catholic church is not perfect, as there is no perfect church. God is able to save man with an imperfect understanding on doctrine. All the old testament saints lacked perfect doctrine and many of the early NT Jewish converts. Yet their place is in haven. Jesus saves us not based on our understanding of theology. The church teaches from the bible and points to Jesus as the savior. This will have effect on those who hear the message.

    so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
    It will not return to me empty,
    but will accomplish what I desire
    and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
    -Isaiah 55.11


    “Some Protestants believe that Roman Catholics cannot know God or experience eternal life. On the other hand, many Roman Catholics believe that Protestants cannot know God or experience eternal life. A main reason Protestants believe as they do about Catholics is, as mentioned above, the official Catholic doctrine of salvation which includes the necessity for human works to be added to the finished work of Christ. While I strongly disagree with this doctrine, I do not believe such an erroneous view, in itself, disqualifies one from the salvation promised those who "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ" as the Son of God, as promised by John 3:16 and many other Scriptures. I am particularly reminded of I John 5:1, which declares, "Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God" (NIV). I am also reminded of the 3,000 reported by the Holy Spirit as saved on the Day of Pentecost. Probably most knew very little about theology. They only knew that Jesus was the promised Messiah, and they needed to repent and be baptized (Acts 2:38). Peter had given them just a very short and simple sermon. If you later gave those 3,000 a test on their understanding of soteriology (the doctrine of salvation) and the faith vs. works controversy, most would probably flunk. Yet they were saved. I believe the same is true in both Protestant and Catholic communions today. They were 3,000 living testimonies of what John later wrote in I John 5:1.

    Many Protestant churches preach a faith-works theology not dissimilar to Catholicism. Of course, they may explain that works naturally follow a real saving faith (and they do), but the often legal requirement for works in the local church has the practical effect in the minds of church members as a reliance on works. In this sense, are those members any better off than Catholics? Are they without salvation because they do not understand the fine points of the truths of Ephesians 2:8,9? I do not believe so. Only the Holy Spirit can give us the assurance of our salvation by bringing alive God's Word in our hearts (I John 5:11-15). In my world travels of many years, I have discovered that there are both believers and nonbelievers in Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Orthodox communities. I have sought to build bridges of love with all true believers in all communions. Some have also expressed concern that I would call a Roman Catholic a "brother or sister" in Christ, or even a "Christian." I call all people brothers and sisters in Christ and Christians if they have received the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and place their faith in Him for eternal life. If they have done that, even if I disagree with some of their doctrine and practices, they are my brothers and sisters in the Lord. If they have not done that, they are not my brothers and sisters in Christ, whether they be Protestant or Catholic. The document was an agreement with those who profess Christ as Savior and Lord.”
    -Dr. Bill Bright Founder and President Campus Crusade for Christ International
    “Its been said that when human beings stop believing in god they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse, they believe in anything.” Malcolm maggeridge

    The simple believes every word: but the prudent man looks well to his going. Proverbs -14.15
    The first to present his case seems right,till another comes forward and questions him -Proverbs 18.17

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
    Genesis 1.1

  2. #2

    Default Re: Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

    Evangelical and Catholics Scholars on Justification



    “Always it is clear that the work of redemption has been accomplished by Christ's atoning sacrifice on the cross. "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us" (Galatians 3:13). Scripture describes the consequences of Christ's redemptive work in several ways, among which are: justification, reconciliation, restoration of friendship with God, and rebirth from above by which we are adopted as children of God and made heirs of the Kingdom. Justification is central to the scriptural account of salvation, and its meaning has been much debated between Protestants and Catholics. We agree that justification is not earned by any good works or merits of our own; it is entirely God's gift, conferred through the Father's sheer graciousness, out of the love that he bears us in his Son, who suffered on our behalf and rose from the dead for our justification. Jesus was "put to death for our trespasses and raised for our justification" (Romans 4:25). In justification, God, on the basis of Christ's righteousness alone, declares us to be no longer his rebellious enemies but his forgiven friends, and by virtue of his declaration it is so. The New Testament makes it clear that the gift of justification is received through faith. "By grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God" (Ephesians 2:8). By faith, which is also the gift of God, we repent of our sins and freely adhere to the gospel, the good news of God's saving work for us in Christ. By our response of faith to Christ, we enter into the blessings promised by the gospel. Faith is not merely intellectual assent but an act of the whole person, involving the mind, the will, and the affections, issuing in a changed lif e We understand that what we here affirm is in agreement with what the Reformation traditions have meant by justification by faith alone (solafide). and firm resolve to bring to the whole world the tidings of God's love and of the salvation accomplished in our crucified, risen, and returning Lord the assertion that while justification is by faith alone, the faith that receives salvation is never alone All who truly believe in Jesus Christ are brothers and sisters in the Lord and must not allow their differences, however important, to undermine this great truth, or to deflect them from bearing witness together to God's gift of salvation in Christ. "I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought" (I Corinthians 1:10).

    http://www.seekgod.ca/ect2.htm


    EVANGELICALS
    Dr. Gerald L. Bray (Beeson Divinity School)
    Dr. Bill Bright (Campus Crusade for Christ)
    Dr. Harold O. J. Brown (Trinity Evangelical Divinity School)
    Mr. Charles Colson (Prison Fellowship)
    Bishop William C. Frey (Episcopal Church)
    Dr. Timothy George (Beeson Divinity School)
    Dr. Os Guinness (The Trinity Forum)
    Dr. Kent R. Hill (Eastern Nazarene College)
    The Rev. Max Lucado (Oak Hills Church of Christ, San Antonio, Texas)
    Dr. T. M. Moore (Chesapeake Theological Seminary)
    Dr. Richard Mouw (Fuller Theological Seminary)
    Dr. Mark A. Noll (Wheaton College)
    Mr. Brian F. O'Connell (Interdev)
    Dr. Thomas Oden (Drew University)
    Dr. James I. Packer (Regent College, British Columbia)
    Dr. Timothy R. Phillips (Wheaton College)
    Dr. John Rodgers (Trinity Episcopal School for Ministry)
    Dr. John Woodbridge (Trinity Evangelical Divinity School)


    ROMAN CATHOLICS
    Fr. James J. Buckley (Loyola College in Maryland)
    Fr. J. A. Di Noia, O. P. (Dominican House of Studies)
    Fr. Avery Dulles, S. J. (Fordham University)
    Fr. Thomas Guarino (Seton Hall University)
    Dr. Peter Kreeft (Boston College)
    Fr. Matthew L. Lamb (Boston College)
    Fr. Eugene LaVerdiere, S. S. S. (Emmanuel)
    Fr. Francis Martin (John Paul 11 Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family)
    Mr. Ralph Martin (Renewal Ministries)
    Fr. Richard John Neuhaus (Religion and Public Life)
    Mr. Michael Novak (American Enterprise Institute)
    Fr. Edward Oakes, S. J. (Regis University)
    Fr. Thomas P. Rausch S. J. (Loyola Marymount University)
    Mr. George Weigel (Ethics and Public Policy Center)
    Dr. Robert Louis Wilken (University of Virginia
    http://www.leaderu.com/ftissues/ft98...cles/gift.html
    http://www.leaderu.com/ect/ect1.html


    We Affirm Together Jesus Christ is Lord. That is the first and final affirmation that Christians make about all of reality. He is the One sent by God to be Lord and Savior of all: "And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4) Christians are people ahead of time, those who proclaim now what will one day be acknowledged by all, that Jesus Christ is Lord. (Philippians 2) We affirm together that we are justified by grace through faith because of Christ. Living faith is active in love that is nothing less than the love of Christ, for we together say with Paul: "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." (Galatians 2) All who accept Christ as Lord and Savior are brothers and sisters in Christ. Evangelicals and Catholics are brothers and sisters in Christ. We have not chosen one another, just as we have not chosen Christ. He has chosen us, and he has chosen us to be his together. (John 15) However imperfect our communion with one another, however deep our disagreements with one another, we recognize that there is but one church of Christ. There is one church because there is one Christ and the church is his body. .....There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all." (Ephesians 4) We affirm together that Christians are to teach and live in obedience to the divinely inspired Scriptures, which are the infallible Word of God. We further affirm together that Christ has promised to his church the gift of the Holy Spirit who will lead us into all truth in discerning and declaring the teaching of Scripture. (John 16) We recognize together that the Holy Spirit has so guided his church in the past. In, for instance, the formation of the canon of the Scriptures, and in the orthodox response to the great Christological and Trinitarian controversies of the early centuries, we confidently acknowledge the guidance of the Holy Spirit. In faithful response to the Spirit's leading, the church formulated the Apostles Creed, which we can and hereby do affirm together as an accurate statement of scriptural truth:

    I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
    I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

    I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.We can and do affirm together that the entirety of Christian faith, life, and mission finds its source, center, and end in the crucified and risen Lord. We give thanks to God that in recent years many Evangelicals and Catholics, ourselves among them, have been able to express a common faith in Christ and so to acknowledge one another as brothers and sisters in Christ. The New Testament makes it clear that the gift of justification is received through faith. "By grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God" (Ephesians 2:8). By faith, which is also the gift of God, we repent of our sins and freely adhere to the Gospel, the good news of God’s saving work for us in Christ. Thus it is that as justified sinners we have been saved, we are being saved, and we will be saved. All this is the gift of God It is our responsibility and firm resolve to bring to the whole world the tidings of God’s love and of the salvation accomplished in our crucified, risen, and returning Lord.
    in the 1980s there were theological discussions on various subjects between Protestant and Catholic scholars. Part of the results of their discussions and agreement are contained in a book entitled Justification by Faith, published by the Augsburg Publishing House in 1985. In part, they "wholeheartedly" agreed (page 16):

    "Our entire hope of justification and salvation rests on Christ Jesus and on the gospel whereby the good news of God's merciful action in Christ is made known; we do not place our ultimate trust in anything other than God's promise and saving work in Christ. This excludes ultimate reliance on our faith, virtues, or merits, even though we acknowledge God working in these by grace alone (solo gratia). In brief, hope and trust for salvation are gifts of the Holy Spirit and finally rest solely on God in Christ . . . Our intent in presenting this statement is to help our churches see how and why they can and should increasingly proclaim together the one, undivided gospel of God's saving mercy in Jesus Christ."
    Last edited by total relism; 07-05-2018 at 00:57.
    “Its been said that when human beings stop believing in god they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse, they believe in anything.” Malcolm maggeridge

    The simple believes every word: but the prudent man looks well to his going. Proverbs -14.15
    The first to present his case seems right,till another comes forward and questions him -Proverbs 18.17

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
    Genesis 1.1

  3. #3

    Default Re: Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

    JOINT DECLARATIONON THE DOCTRINE OF JUSTIFICATION
    by the Lutheran World Federation
    and the Catholic Church

    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/po...en.html#_ftn19

    Catholic and Lutheran Scholars met for a join declaration in Germany the home of Martin Luther.


    subscribing Lutheran churches and the Roman Catholic Church are now able to articulate a common understanding of our justification by God's grace through faith in Christ. It does not cover all that either church teaches about justification; it does encompass a consensus on basic truths of the doctrine of justification and shows that the remaining differences in its explication are no longer the occasion for doctrinal condemnations.

    40.The understanding of the doctrine of justification set forth in this Declaration shows that a consensus in basic truths of the doctrine of justification exists between Lutherans and Catholics. In light of this consensus the remaining differences of language, theological elaboration, and emphasis in the understanding of justification described in paras. 18 to 39 are acceptable. Therefore the Lutheran and the Catholic explications of justification are in their difference open to one another and do not destroy the consensus regarding the basic truths.

    41.Thus the doctrinal condemnations of the 16th century, in so far as they relate to the doctrine of justification, appear in a new light: The teaching of the Lutheran churches presented in this Declaration does not fall under the condemnations from the Council of Trent. The condemnations in the Lutheran Confessions do not apply to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church presented in this Declaration.

    8.Together we hear the gospel that "God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life" (Jn 3:16). This good news is set forth in Holy Scripture in various ways. In the Old Testament we listen to God's word about human sinfulness and human disobedience as well as of God's "righteousness" and "judgment".

    9 Chief among these is the "justification" of sinful human beings by God's grace through faith (Rom 3:23-25), which came into particular prominence in the Reformation period.

    10.Paul sets forth the gospel as the power of God for salvation of the person who has fallen under the power of sin, as the message that proclaims that "the righteousness of God is revealed through faith for faith" (Rom 1:16f) and that grants "justification" (Rom 3:21-31). He proclaims Christ as "our righteousness" (1 Cor 1:30), applying to the risen Lord what Jeremiah proclaimed about God himself (Jer 23:6). In Christ's death and resurrection all dimensions of his saving work have their roots for he is "our Lord, who was put to death for our trespasses and raised for our justification" (Rom 4:25). All human beings are in need of God's righteousness, "since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23; cf.Rom 1:18-3:20; 11:32; Gal 3:22). In Galatians (3:6) and Romans (4:3-9), Paul understands Abraham's faith (Gen 15:6) as faith in the God who justifies the sinner (Rom 4:5) and calls upon the testimony of the Old Testament to undergird his gospel that this righteousness will be reckoned to all who, like Abraham, trust in God's promise. "For the righteous will live by faith (Hab 2:4; cf. Gal 3:11; Rom 1:17). In Paul's letters, God's righteousness is also God's power for those who have faith (Rom 1:16f; 2 Cor 5:21). In Christ he makes it our righteousness (2 Cor 5:21). Justification becomes ours through Christ Jesus "whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective through faith" (Rom 3:25; see 3:21-28). "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God - not the result of works" (Eph 2:8f).

    11.Justification is the forgiveness of sins (cf. Rom 3:23-25; Acts 13:39; Lk 18:14), liberation from the dominating power of sin and death (Rom 5:12-21) and from the curse of the law (Gal 3:10-14). It is acceptance into communion with God: already now, but then fully in God's coming kingdom (Rom 5:1f). It unites with Christ and with his death and resurrection (Rom 6:5). It occurs in the reception of the Holy Spirit in baptism and incorporation into the one body (Rom 8:1f, 9f; I Cor 12:12f). All this is from God alone, for Christ's sake, by grace, through faith in "the gospel of God's Son" (Rom 1:1-3).

    12.The justified live by faith that comes from the Word of Christ (Rom 10:17) and is active through love (Gal 5:6), the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22f). But since the justified are assailed from within and without by powers and desires (Rom 8:35-39; Gal 5:16-21) and fall into sin (1 Jn 1:8,10), they must constantly hear God's promises anew, confess their sins (1 Jn 1:9), ....... But the good news remains: "there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" (Rom 8:1), and in whom Christ lives (Gal2:20). Christ's "act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all" (Rom 5:18).

    15.In faith we together hold the conviction that justification is the work of the triune God. The Father sent his Son into the world to save sinners. The foundation and presupposition of justification is the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ. Justification thus means that Christ himself is our righteousness, in which we share through the Holy Spirit in accord with the will of the Father. Together we confess: By grace alone, in faith in Christ's saving work and not because of any merit on our part, we are accepted by God and receive the Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts while equipping and calling us to good works

    16.All people are called by God to salvation in Christ. Through Christ alone are we justified, when we receive this salvation in faith

    17.We also share the conviction that the message of justification directs us in a special way towards the heart of the New Testament witness to God's saving action in Christ: it tells us that as sinners our new life is solely due to the forgiving and renewing mercy that God imparts as a gift and we receive in faith, and never can merit in any way.

    Lutherans and Catholics share the goal of confessing Christ in all things, who alone is to be trusted above all things as the one Mediator (1 Tim 2:5f) through whom God in the Holy Spirit gives himself and pours out his renewing gifts.

    19.We confess together that all persons depend completely on the saving grace of God for their salvation. The freedom they possess in relation to persons and the things of this world is no freedom in relation to salvation, for as sinners they stand under God's judgment and are incapable of turning by themselves to God to seek deliverance, of meriting their justification before God, or of attaining salvation by their own abilities. Justification takes place solely by God's grace. Because Catholics and Lutherans confess this together, it is true to say:

    20.When Catholics say that persons "cooperate" in preparing for and accepting justification by consenting to God's justifying action, they see such personal consent as itself an effect of grace, not as an action arising from innate human abilities.

    25.We confess together that sinners are justified by faith in the saving action of God in Christ. By the action of the Holy Spirit in baptism, they are granted the gift of salvation, which lays the basis for the whole Christian life. They place their trust in God's gracious promise by justifying faith, which includes hope in God and love for him. Such a faith is active in love and thus the Christian cannot and should not remain without works. But whatever in the justified precedes or follows the free gift of faith is neither the basis of justification nor merits it.

    27.The Catholic understanding also sees faith as fundamental in justification. For without faith, no justification can take place. Persons are justified through baptism as hearers of the word and believers in it. The justification of sinners is forgiveness of sins and being made righteous by justifying grace, which makes us children of God. In justification the righteous receive from Christ faith, hope, and love and are thereby taken into communion with him.This new personal relation to God is grounded totally on God's graciousness and remains constantly dependent on the salvific and creative working of this gracious God, who remains true to himself, so that one can rely upon him. Thus justifying grace never becomes a human possession to which one could appeal over against God. While Catholic teaching emphasizes the renewal of life by justifying grace, this renewal in faith, hope, and love is always dependent on God's unfathomable grace and contributes nothing to justification about which one could boast before God (Rom 3:27

    28.We confess together that in baptism the Holy Spirit unites one with Christ, justifies, and truly renews the person. But the justified must all through life constantly look to God's unconditional justifying grace. ...he justified also must ask God daily for forgiveness as in the Lord's Prayer (Mt. 6:12; 1 Jn1:9), are ever again called to conversion and penance, and are ever again granted forgiveness.


    30.Catholics hold that the grace of Jesus Christ imparted in baptism takes away all that is sin "in the proper sense" and that is "worthy of damnation" (Rom 8:1). There does, however, remain in the person an inclination (concupiscence) which comes from sin and presses toward sin. Since, .. Grateful for deliverance by Christ, they underscore that this inclination in contradiction to God does not merit the punishment of eternal death and does not separate the justified person from God. But when individuals voluntarily separate themselves from God, it is not enough to return to observing the commandments, for they must receive pardon and peace in the Sacrament of Reconciliation through the word of forgiveness imparted to them in virtue of God's reconciling work in Christ.

    31.We confess together that persons are justified by faith in the gospel "apart from works prescribed by the law" (Rom 3:28). Christ has fulfilled the law and by his death and resurrection has overcome it as a way to salvation.

    36.Catholics can share the concern of the Reformers to ground faith in the objective reality of Christ's promise, to look away from one's own experience, and to trust in Christ's forgiving word alone (cf. Mt 16:19; 18:18). With the Second Vatican Council, Catholics state: to have faith is to entrust oneself totally to God, who liberates us from the darkness of sin and death and awakens us to eternal life. In this sense, one cannot believe in God and at the same time consider the divine promise untrustworthy. No one may doubt God's mercy and Christ's merit. Every person, however, may be concerned about his salvation when he looks upon his own weaknesses and shortcomings. Recognizing his own failures, however, the believer may yet be certain that God intends his salvation.

    37.We confess together that good works - a Christian life lived in faith, hope and love - follow justification and are its fruits. When the justified live in Christ and act in the grace they receive, they bring forth, in biblical terms, good fruit.

    "If we translate from one language to another, then Protestant talk about justification through faith corresponds to Catholic talk about justification through grace; and on the other hand, Protestant doctrine understands substantially under the one word 'faith' what Catholic doctrine (following 1 Cor. 13:13) sums up in the triad of 'faith, hope, and love'" (LV:E 52).

    "Catholics ..teach as do Lutherans, that nothing prior to the free gift of faith merits justification and that all of God's saving gifts come through Christ alone"




    ANNEX TO THE OFFICIAL COMMON STATEMENT



    1. The following elucidations underline the consensus reached in the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification (JD) regarding basic truths of justification; thus it becomes clear that the mutual condemnations of former times do not apply to the Catholic and Lutheran doctrines of justification as they are presented in the Joint Declaration.

    2. „Together we confess: By grace alone, in faith in Christ's saving work and not because of any merit on our part, we are accepted by God and receive the Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts while equipping and calling us to good works“(JD 15).

    A) We confess together that God forgives sin by grace and at the same time frees human beings from sin's enslaving power (...)“ (JD 22). Justification is forgiveness of sins and being made righteous, through which God „imparts the gift of new life in Christ“ (JD 22). "Since we are justified by faith we have peace with God“ (Rom 5:1). We are "called children of God; and that is what we are“ (1 Jn 3:1).We are truly and inwardly renewed by the action of the Holy Spirit, remaining always dependent on his work in us. "So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!“ (2 Cor 5:17). The justified do not remain sinners in this sense.

    Yet we would be wrong were we to say that we are without sin (1 Jn l:8-10, cf. JD 28). "All of us make many mistakes“ (Jas 3:2). "Who is aware of his unwitting sins? Cleanse me of many secret faults“ (Ps. 19:12). And when we pray, we can only say, like the tax collector, "God, be merciful to me, a sinner“ (Lk 18:13). This is expressed in a variety of ways in our liturgies. Together we hear the exhortation „Therefore, do not let sin exercise dominion in your mortal bodies, to make you obey their passions“ (Rom 6:12). This recalls to us the persisting danger which comes from the power of sin and its action in Christians. To this extent, Lutherans and Catholics can together understand the Christian as simul justus et peccator, despite their different approaches to this subject as expressed in JD 29-30.

    B) The concept of "concupiscence“ is used in different senses on the Catholic and Lutheran sides. In the Lutheran Confessional writings "concupiscence“ is understood as the self-seeking desire of the human being, which in light of the Law, spiritually understood, is regarded as sin. In the Catholic understanding concupiscence is an inclination, remaining in human beings even after baptism, which comes from sin and presses towards sin. Despite the differences involved here, it can be recognized from a Lutheran perspective that desire can become the opening through which sin attacks. Due to the power of sin the entire human being carries the tendency to oppose God. This tendency, according to both Lutheran and Catholic conception, "does not correspond to God’s original design for humanity“ (JD 30). Sin has a personal character and, as such, leads to separation from God. It is the selfish desire of the old person and the lack of trust and love toward God.

    The reality of salvation in baptism and the peril from the power of sin can be expressed in such a way that, on the one hand, the forgiveness of sins and renewal of humanity in Christ by baptism is emphasised and, on the other hand, it can be seen that the justified also "are continuously exposed to the power of sin still pressing its attacks (cf. Rom 6:12-14) and are not exempt from a lifelong struggle against the contradiction to God (...)“ (JD 28).

    C) Justification takes place "by grace alone“ (JD 15 and 16), by faith alone, the person is justified „apart from works“ (Rom 3:28, cf. JD 25). "Grace creates faith not only when faith begins in a person but as long as faith lasts“ (Thomas Aquinas, S. Th.II/II 4, 4 ad 3).The working of God’s grace does not exclude human action: God effects everything, the willing and the achievement, therefore, we are called to strive (cf. Phil 2:12 ff). "As soon as the Holy Spirit has initiated his work of regeneration and renewal in us through the Word and the holy sacraments, it is certain that we can and must cooperate by the power of the Holy Spirit...“ (The Formula of Concord, FC SD II,64f; BSLK 897,37ff).


    D) Grace as fellowship of the justified with God in faith, hope and love is always received from the salvific and creative work of God (cf. JD 27). But it is nevertheless the responsibility of the justified not to waste this grace but to live in it. The exhortation to do good works is the exhortation to practice the faith (cf. BSLK 197,45). The good works of the justified „should be done in order to confirm their call, that is, lest they fall from their call by sinning again“ (Apol. XX,13, BSLK 316,18-24; with reference to 2 Pet. 1:10. Cf. also FC SD IV,33; BSLK 948,9-23). In this sense Lutherans and Catholics can understand together what is said about the "preservation of grace“ in JD 38 and 39. Certainly, "whatever in the justified precedes or follows the free gift of faith is neither the basis of justification nor merits it“ (JD25).

    E) By justification we are unconditionally brought into communion with God. This includes the promise of eternal life; "If we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his“ (Rom 6:5, cf. Jn 3:36, Rom 8:17). In the final judgement, the justified will be judged also on their works (cf. Mt 16:27; 25:31-46;Rom 2:16; 14:12; 1 Cor 3:8; 2 Cor 5:10 etc.). We face a judgement in which God’s gracious sentence will approve anything in our life and action that corresponds to his will. However, everything in our life that is wrong will be uncovered and will not enter eternal life. The Formula of Concord also states: "It is God’s will and express command that believers should do good works which the Holy Spirit works in them, and God is willing to be pleased with them for Christ’s sake and he promises to reward them gloriously in this and in the future life.“ (FC SD IV,38). Any reward is a reward of grace, on which we have no claim.

    3. The doctrine of justification is measure or touchstone for the Christian faith. No teaching may contradict this criterion. In this sense, the doctrine of justification is an "indispensable criterion which constantly serves to orient all the teaching and practice of our churches to Christ“ (JD l8). As such, it has its truth and specific meaning within the overall context of the Church’s fundamental Trinitarian confession of faith. We "share the goal of confessing Christ in all things, who is to be trusted above all things as the one Mediator (1 Tim 2:5-6) through whom God in the Holy Spirit gives himself and pours out his renewing gifts“ (JD18).
    4. The Response of the Catholic Church does not intend to put in question the authority of Lutheran Synods or of the Lutheran World Federation. The Catholic Church and the Lutheran World Federation began the dialogue and have taken it forward as partners with equal rights ("par cum pari“). Notwithstanding different conceptions of authority in the church, each partner respects the other partner’s ordered process of reaching doctrinal decisions.
    Last edited by total relism; 07-05-2018 at 00:59.
    “Its been said that when human beings stop believing in god they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse, they believe in anything.” Malcolm maggeridge

    The simple believes every word: but the prudent man looks well to his going. Proverbs -14.15
    The first to present his case seems right,till another comes forward and questions him -Proverbs 18.17

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
    Genesis 1.1

  4. #4
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, Cub Shoot 2 Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Treasure Diver Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Slack Man Champion, Japanese Baseball Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Super Mario Mushroom Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Fish Kill Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, KF 9000 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

    The Nicene Creed is currently rendered as follows during the Mass (English vernacular; phrasings differ slightly with each language):

    I believe in one God,
    the Father almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    of all things visible and invisible.
    I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
    the Only Begotten Son of God,
    born of the Father before all ages.
    God from God, Light from Light,
    true God from true God,
    begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;
    through him all things were made.
    For us men and for our salvation
    he came down from heaven,
    and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
    and became man.
    For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate,
    he suffered death and was buried,
    and rose again on the third day
    in accordance with the Scriptures.
    He ascended into heaven
    and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
    He will come again in glory
    to judge the living and the dead
    and his kingdom will have no end.
    I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
    who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
    who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified,
    who has spoken through the prophets.
    I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
    I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins
    and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead
    and the life of the world to come. Amen.


    Source

    A number of the prayers you quote are actually rendered by you in an older literary style, sometimes using phrasings that are Pre Vatican-II. I recommend the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website to you for the currently recommended phrasings. We went through a number of changes to the specific text of the mass and other prayers within the last six years so as to make the translations clearer and to render the message of these prayers etc. more....pardon the pun....faithfully.


    Despite the differences you note in your discussion -- and your are correct that many of the 'disputes' are more about form than substance -- we pray regularly that we will all someday 'worship at the same table.'
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

    Member thankful for this post:



  5. #5

    Default Re: Do Catholics and Protestants Differ on Justification?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    The Nicene Creed is currently rendered as follows during the Mass (English vernacular; phrasings differ slightly with each language):

    I believe in one God,
    the Father almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    of all things visible and invisible.
    I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
    the Only Begotten Son of God,
    born of the Father before all ages.
    God from God, Light from Light,
    true God from true God,
    begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;
    through him all things were made.
    For us men and for our salvation
    he came down from heaven,
    and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
    and became man.
    For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate,
    he suffered death and was buried,
    and rose again on the third day
    in accordance with the Scriptures.
    He ascended into heaven
    and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
    He will come again in glory
    to judge the living and the dead
    and his kingdom will have no end.
    I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
    who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
    who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified,
    who has spoken through the prophets.
    I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
    I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins
    and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead
    and the life of the world to come. Amen.


    Source

    A number of the prayers you quote are actually rendered by you in an older literary style, sometimes using phrasings that are Pre Vatican-II. I recommend the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website to you for the currently recommended phrasings. We went through a number of changes to the specific text of the mass and other prayers within the last six years so as to make the translations clearer and to render the message of these prayers etc. more....pardon the pun....faithfully.


    Despite the differences you note in your discussion -- and your are correct that many of the 'disputes' are more about form than substance -- we pray regularly that we will all someday 'worship at the same table.'
    Great stuff and thanks for the source. I look forward to that day when we are all one.
    “Its been said that when human beings stop believing in god they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse, they believe in anything.” Malcolm maggeridge

    The simple believes every word: but the prudent man looks well to his going. Proverbs -14.15
    The first to present his case seems right,till another comes forward and questions him -Proverbs 18.17

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
    Genesis 1.1

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