False Premise #2: The secular and Christian use of the Greek word from which the English word “baptism” is derived always refers to immersion (complete submersion) in a fluid.
The Protestant Church of Christ’s second false premise is closely related to the first; each relies circularly on the other as support. Your erroneous assumption is that the Greek word from which the English word “baptism” is derived always refers to complete submersion in water.
In addition, your group’s premise is fundamentally, though not intentionally, dishonest, because none of your members really believe that a valid Baptism is actually performed by only immersion, because what your group exercises is an act that includes dunking the candidate in water, and then immediately removing her from the water (dipping). Your group calls that model “immersion” just as the Catholic Church of Christ, but it is not “immersion” as a matter of linguistic and physical fact. In other words, even within the model your group has retained as valid, your exercise of the rite does not reflect its oversimplified linguistic and visual imperative; otherwise, your Baptisms would leave your candidates at the bottom of your Jacuzzis. Where are your legalists who should insist that your Baptisms reflect the true secular meaning of the word? Continue reading
The Catholic Church of Christ believes the word “Baptism” represents a specific sacrament, and the Protestant Church of Christ believes the word represents a specific sacrament (so to speak) as well as a specific mode: immersion, and only immersion. The Catholic Church and the Protestant group agree that Baptism by immersion is valid, but the Catholic Church has always understood that Baptism is not relegated to its phenol-linguistic parameters, but, as a sacrament, includes pouring as a proper mode (often referred to as “sprinkling” by ignorant Protestants, but is in fact a pouring action when performed most properly).1 Continue reading
The Protestant Church of Christ often objects to the Catholic Church’s use of vestments (robes), and believes that its use of vestments are an indication that it is a body that Christians should “beware of.”
This particular objection is more superficial, but it is popular, and often presented within the context of Matthew 23:9, so I will quickly address it. Fundamentalist elders and preachers do not wear “robes” during their services. And from a Fundamentalist’s perspective, Catholic priests do in fact wear robes. And when a verse such as Mark 12:38 is read, which reads, Beware of the scribes, who like to go about in long robes, the anti-Catholic bias within the Fundamentalist’s mind draws a quick conclusion: We do not wear robes, we are right, they wear robes, the Bible says to beware of people who wear robes, so therefore, they are wrong. Continue reading
The Protestant Church of Christ objects to the address of “holy father” for a pope.
As already proved, it is perfectly biblical for Christians to call their priests “father”. However, the address “holy” is a word the Protestant Church of Christ reserves for God alone, but is its reservation biblically substantiated? Continue reading
The Protestant Church of Christ objects to the Catholic Church’s practice of calling her priests “fathers”. Your group bases its objection not on the full corpus of Scripture, but on a single, isolated verse: And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven (Matthew 23:9). As with every objection that I have addressed on this website thus far, I will illustrate how context and reason should diffuse your group’s objection and also redirect its judgment towards itself. Continue reading
Members of the Protestant Churches of Christ,
Non-Catholic Christianity is like a shattered mirror; it reflects something that precedes it, it distorts parts of the image of the original object, and it might not reflect parts of the object at all. The image that is seen in the mirror is similar to the object, and those similarities are good, but it is not the full image of the object, and it certainly is not the actual object itself. Continue reading
Is the Church not the household of God (1 Timothy 3:15)—the house Christ built? Is Christ not more powerful than Satan (cf. 1 John 4:4)? No one can enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods (Mark 3:27), but Satan plundered your strong man’s house! The Catholic Church’s Strong Man guards His household. It is true that Satan can conquer individual Christians who choose to indulge in mortal sin, and who apostasize themselves from His household (cf. Romans 11:22, Galatians 5:4, 1 John 5:16-17); but Jesus promised the visible, identifiable, and authoritative Church that He would not leave her as an orphan (cf. John 16:16-18), but would be with her until the end of the world (Matthew 20:28 King James Version). Continue reading