200 Words: Why I’m Not Roman Catholic

by Nathan Busenitz

If someone were to ask me why I’m not Roman Catholic, this would be my answer in 200 words or less:

I believe the Roman Catholic church has seriously erred in three fundamental areas: in its approach to God, the Bible, and salvation.

1) In its approach to God, Roman Catholicism approves the veneration of (i.e. bowing down before) images and relics, encourages praying to the saints, and promotes Mary to a semi-divine status. All of these constitute varying forms of idolatry, which Scripture condemns (cf. Ex. 20:4–5Open in Logos Bible Software (if available); Lev. 26:1Open in Logos Bible Software (if available); Acts 10:25–26Open in Logos Bible Software (if available); Rev. 22:8–9Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)).

2) In its approach to the Bible, Roman Catholicism elevates church tradition to a place of authority equal to (and in practice higher than) Scripture. The Lord Jesus condemned first-century Judaism as apostate because it likewise elevated the traditions of men above the Word of God (Mark 7:6–8Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)).

3) In its approach to salvation, Roman Catholicism adds various sacramental works to the gospel of grace. In a similar way, the apostle Paul condemned the Judaizers because they added self-righteous works to the gospel (cf. Acts 15:1–11Open in Logos Bible Software (if available); Rom. 11:6Open in Logos Bible Software (if available); Gal. 1:6–9Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)).

These fundamental issues, in addition to a host of other doctrinal problems (e.g. purgatory, the papacy, priestly celibacy, indulgences, the Apocrypha, etc.) lead me to reject Roman Catholicism.

-Nathan Busenitz, http://thecripplegate.com/200-words-why-im-not-roman-catholic/

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