Such is the mindset of Protestantism as a whole. It is very much the “Church of Me”. If you’re part of one denomination and don’t like it, you can feel free to join another. If you don’t like the idea of organized religion, it’s fine: abandon it. Use the Bible strictly by itself and forget about the concept of “church”. If you want a church, but can’t find one that satisfies you, make one!
Thousands of denominations all claiming to have the truth. That, my friends, is the longterm fruit of the Reformation. Whatever happened to, “That they may be one, as We are one” (John 17:22)? Protestantism says to Christ exactly the opposite of what He said to the Father: “Not Thy will, but mine be done”.
Is it really likely that Our Lord wanted people starting churches left and right or determining truth based on what they think is true? I guess St. Paul was off the mark when he spoke of “one Lord, one faith, one baptism” (Ephesians 4:5)? Actually, wait, never mind. We don’t need to be baptized. We just need to accept Jesus…right?
That sure wasn’t what Jesus said. He was pretty clear that baptism is necessary for salvation. “Amen I say to you, unless a man be born again of water and the spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God” (John 3:5). Yes, subjectively speaking, someone can be saved without baptism, but it is necessary objectively.
Protestants also tend to treat the Bible like it is “the pillar and foundation of the truth”. But if you look at the passage where that quote comes from, 1 Timothy 3:15, you’d see that it’s referring to the Church, not the Bible.
Another problem with the Protestant sect is private Biblical interpretation. Observe 2 Peter 3:15-16: “…Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction“. Not only does this make it clear that a definite, sound interpretation is necessary of Paul and the rest of Scripture, but it also makes one wonder why it is that many Protestants use Paul extensively to defend their doctrines, if he is “hard to understand”.
I’ve heard many a Protestant say, when asked about issues such as the huge divisions in the religion as a whole, that “We all agree on the big stuff”. What exactly qualifies as “big”? They’d probably say, “The Trinity, the Incarnation, Sola Fide, and Sola Scriptura”. But what about other stuff?
Take the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist, for example. Some Protestants like Anglicans and Lutherans say that this is a very important thing. In fact, it was so important, they might say, that Jesus was sure to say that those who don’t eat His body and drink His blood won’t have eternal life and they’d cite John 6:53-54 for that. Then some Protestants would say He was speaking figuratively in light His statement, “The flesh profits nothing” and they’d cite John 6:63.
Or look at homosexuality. Some would denounce it, using Romans 1:26-27 as evidence, and others would say it’s fine and lump it in with the abolished “Old Law”.
Some believe in predestination. Others, free will. Some believe it’s wrong to call priests “father”, others don’t care.
And the list goes on. They can’t all be right or acceptable. There is only one truth. Christianity is not a religion of relativism, but a religion of absolutes. And yes – it is a religion!
God bless, until next time.