Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of Kosmosdale Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Assumption of Mary and the Ongoing Importance of Reformation Teaching

In a fairly recent debate with James White [available HERE], Roman Catholic apologist Robert Sungenis defined the Assumption of Mary as follows:

The Blessed Virgin Mary was assumed into heaven, body and soul, and presently lives and reigns with Christ, who is at the right hand of the Father... she was taken up to heaven.

Since it was promulgated on November 1, 1950, the Assumption of Mary has been a dogma of the Roman Catholic Church, meaning that according to Roman Catholicism it is a teaching that is necessary for a person to believe if he or she is to be saved: as Sungenis went on to explain: "... if you don't believe it, you are condemned.

What is the basis for this dogma? NOT THE BIBLE, as Sungenis admitted: ", express Scriptural proofs [for the bodily assumption of Mary] are not to be had."

In other words, according to Roman Catholicism, if a person denies the Assumption of Mary- a doctrine not about God, or about Christ, or about the nature of faith, but about a character found in the Bible (though the doctrine of her assumption is not found in the Bible)- then that person is bound for Hell.

In reality, this dogma is less about Mary and more about the Pope: does the Pope have the authority to impose teachings that must be believed for salvation? (This question is especially important as the statements made by Popes throughout history have so often contradicted each other.)

As we approach the celebration of Reformation Day this October 31st, let us be thankful for the work of the Reformers in their proclamation the gospel: freeing the simple message of faith in Christ from unnecessary Roman doctrines. Let us also be thankful for the Reformers' teaching concerning the basis for our gospel beliefs: i.e. sola Scriptura.



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