I. How CATHOLIC CHURCH RECEIVED ITS NAME.
Early church fathers cast about for name that, when added to "Christian," would signify one universal church. References to universal history, laws, etc., suggested term "catholic." Ignatius of Antioch was first to apply catholicity to Christian church.
"Where Christ is, there also is the catholic church." "Catholic" became complement of "Christian." Soon universal Christian church became known as "Catholic church."
II. How CHURCH WAS FOUNDED.
Dates its origin from selection by Jesus Christ of apostle Peter as chief of apostles, and traces its history through his successors in Bishop of Rome. (See Handbook of All Denominations.)
The church dates back to sixth century, but creed of Catholic Church not formulated until sixteenth century.
Romanism did not exist in days of apostles. (Not till sixth century.) There were churches in Rome, same as at Jerusalem and Corinth, but there was no resemblance in doctrine or government to the Roman Catholic.
Romanists get credentials from their own interpretation of Scripture. (Matt. 16 :18; I Peter 2:4-6.) None of the Scriptures they use contains slightest allusion to Roman church.
III. HISTORY OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH.
Since Seventh-day Adventist workers must become thoroughly acquainted with historical steps which became basis for transfer of original rest day, the seventh-day Sabbath, to Sunday, first day of the week, we will not here .enter into these details. Efforts of Rome in this direction well known to us. We know background for her designs as foretold by Daniel—"shall . . . think to change times and laws." Because of Rome's last-day program for world, our workers must remain intelligent on all her moves, and especially final ones in earth's history.
IV. APPROACHING CATHOLICS WITH MESSAGE.
Seventh-day Adventists have guidance in Spirit of prophecy in approaching Catholics. We are not to "make a raid" on them, but rather be tactful and diplomatic in dealing with them. We are to find points of agreement, and proceed carefully.
V. TRUTHS ON WHICH S.D.A.'s CAN FIND COMMON GROUND WITH CATHOLICS.
1. God has created, preserves, and governs all things.
2. Trinity of three Persons.
3. Second Person of Trinity became man, and died on cross for us.
4. No one can be saved without grace of God.
5. God will judge all men.
6. Not sufficient to believe what God has revealed; we must all keep His commandments.
7. Sin is transgression of law of God. (See Abridged Catechism of Christian Doctrine by Rev. Joseph Deharbe, S. J., pp. 7, 8, 21.)
VI. SUNDAYKEEPING AND SABBATHKEEPING PRINCIPLES.
I. Points on proper observance of Sunday which we might also apply to observance of Sabbath. (See Keeping Sunday Holy, Rev. J. B. Bagshawe, pp. 9-16.)
2. Give time to "recollection of spirit." (Page II.)
3. Good reading ought to have a place. (Page 15.)
4. Reading should be instructive and devotional—Holy Scriptures, .sermons, meditations, etc. (Page 16.)
5. Study life of our Lord, His doctrines, and example. (Page 16.)
6. Abstain from all unnecessary work. (Page 9.)
7. Sunday observance which we could not apply to true Sabbathkeeping. (See Keeping Sunday Holy, pp. 7-13.)
8. Give lessons in drawing, writing, reading, music, etc. (Page 7.)
9. Buy necessary things for daily consumption. (Page 7.)
10. Reap corn, mow hay, or gather fruit when such things would be likely to suffer from bad weather. (Page 7.)
11. "If young people occasionally take an unreasonable part of it [Sunday], and, 11OLV and then, spend a large part of the day in taking fresh air and exercise, which they cannot otherwise get, I do not think He [God] will be offended—if they are careful in hearing mass—provided that, as a rule and habitually, they keep Sunday in a right spirit, and give their time and service generously to Him." (Page 13.)
VII. VARIOUS CATHOLIC TEACHINGS AFFECTING OUR APPROACHES.
I. Mary—Mother of God.
Mary declared by church to be mother of God, but not mother of His Godhead; Second Person of Holy Trinity existed from all eternity. Mary a finite creature, born according to human nature. Obviously she could not have been mother of Infinite Godhead of her divine Son. In Christ, two natures—the one divine, the other human; but one Person. That one Person was the Son of Mary, Mother of God. (See Catholic Mind, June, 1943.)
2. Papal Infallibility.
Papal infallibility does not mean that the Pope can use his high authority to mislead the church. It means that after due consideration, he defines a dogma that has been divinely revealed to church by God. Scope of this power applies to faith and morals, but not to science or history. If Pope were to declare earth is flat, that would be something quite outside his pontifical authority, and anyone would be free to dispute his point of view. But when he defines a dogma that God has revealed to His church, then he is infallible, and you cannot argue. (Ibid.)
3. Has Rome Fostered Bible Study?
(The question of whether or not Catholics may read their Bibles, is a real, live, present-day issue. One hears much today regarding Rome's new interest in advocating a study of the Bible for all her members. Judging from conflicting opinions on this point one must conclude that she has not changed her policies of adroitness. Rome is still circumscribing the reading program of her members. In a recent move to circulate a special war edition of the New Testament, we observe that many verses and whole chapters of the Word are omitted. Readers are left under the impression that they are reading God's Word as it was given through inspiration. The following quotations throw light on both sides of the question of her attitude.)
a. Writers favoring Bible study.
"'Two encyclicals in fifty years on the stip of the Bible, not to mention similar pleas other popes and high Roman ecclesiastics, surely "give the lie,"' says the Catholic Times, 'to the age-old slander that Catholics may not read the Bible.'
"Pasquier Quesnel, in the eighteenth century, in his Moral Reflections and the Gospels, pleaded that 'the reading of Holy
Some Claims of Catholicism Refuted
I. "Now the Scriptures alone do not contain all the truths which a Christian is bound to believe, nor do they explicitly enjoin all the duties which he is Obliged 10 practice."—James Cardinal Geeboxs, Faith of Our Fathers (Baltimore, John Murphy Co., 1893), p.
2. "We must, therefore, conclude that the Scriptures alone cannot be a sufficient guide and rule of faith. . . . They do not contain all the truths necessary for Salvation."—Ibid.
3. "Unlike the rest of the children of Adam, the soul of Mary was never subject to sin, even in the first moment of its infusion into the body. She alone was exempt from the original taint. This immunity of Mary from original sin is exclusively due to the merits of Christ."—Ibid., p. 204.
4. "But you may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a .single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify."—Ibid., p.
5. "If the Bible is the only guide for the Christian, then the Seventh-day Adventist is right in observing the Saturday with the Jews."—Rev. Bertrand L. Conway, The Question-Box Answers (New York, Columbus Press, 1912), p. 254.
I. "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness : that the man of God 'may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works." 2 Tim. 3:16, 17.
2. "To the law and to the testimony ; if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." Isa. 8:20.
3, "All have sinned." Rom. 3:10, 23; 5:12.
4. "This attribute, or note, of the church implies that the true church must always teach the identical doctrines once delivered by the apostles. . . Consequently, no church can claim to be the true one whose doctrines differ from those of the apostles."—JAMES CARDINAL GIBBONS, Faith of Our Fathers (Baltimore, John Murphy Co., 1893), P. 58.
5. Ibid. Scripture is for everybody, it is useful and necessary at all times, in all places, and for all sorts of persons to study and know the spirit, piety, and mystery of the Holy Scripture, and that to take the New Testament out of the hands of Christians, or to keep it closed up, by taking from them the means of understanding it, is no other than to shut up or close the mouth of Christ in respect of them.' (Though Pasquier Quesnel was a Catholic, his opinions were promptly condemned by Clement XI.)"—"Has Rome Fostered Bible Study?" By W. L. Emmerson in Signs of the Times, Aug. 15, 1944.
"Be assured that if you become a Catholic you will never be forbidden to read the Bible. It is our earnest wish that every word of the Gospel may be imprinted on your memory and on your heart."—James Cardinal Gibbons, Faith of Our Fathers, pp. 74-91.
b. Authorities against Bible study.
'At that Council [of Trent] an index of prohibited books was submitted to, and approved by, Pope Pius IV. One of these was the Bible in the common tongue. . . . Therefore it was decreed: 'If anyone without a license presume to read or keep by him the Bible, he shall be disqualified to receive the absolution of his sins till he deliver It up to the ordinary.' "—W.L. Emmerson in Signs of the Times, Aug. 15, 1944.
"According to Cardinal Bellarmine, the Scriptures 'ought not to be read publicly in the vulgar tongue.' "—Ibid.
Cardinal Wiseman wrote in the September, 1852, issue of the Dublin Review, "We do not urge them [the Scriptures] on our people; we do not encourage them to read them; we do not spread them to the utmost among them. Certainly not !"—Page 254.
"God never intended the Bible to be the Christian's rule of faith."—James Cardinal Gibbons, Faith of Our Fathers, p. 78. "The Scriptures alone cannot be a sufficient guide and rule of faith, because they cannot, at any time, be within the reach of every inquirer ; because they are not of themselves clear and intelligible, even in matters of the highest importance, and because they do not contain all the truths necessary for salvation."—ibid., pp. 89, 91.
4. On Parochial Schools.
Rome cherishes a deadly hostility to schools not completely under her own care. She would like supreme authority over the schools of all Christian countries. People in Catholic lands have not received the benefits of education. (See The Papal System, Cathcart, pp. 370, 372.)
5. On the Sacrament of the Mass.
While stressing the sacrament as essential to salvation, there is no certainty about salvation in Catholic Church.
According to Cardinal Bellarmine, "It is not possible for anyone to be sure with the certainty of faith that he has received a true sacrament, as a sacrament cannot be celebrated without the intention of the minister, and no one can see the intention of another." "In the Romish Church, by the testimony of Bellarmine and the Council of Trent, no one can tell whether he has ever received a true sacrament ; nor has he any certainty whether he is not going headlong to the pit when he may have observed all the rites of the Church; and when he may have the assurance of all its clergy that he is going straight to heaven. There is ground here for dreadful uncertainty and apprehension." —Ibid., p. 360.
Number of Catholics in United States in 1944, about 22,000,000.