Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Catholic Defender: Out On Patrol

In military tactics, a patrol usually can range from a small squad size element to a platoon size element.

Ordinarily they are a small tactical unit sent out to patrol areas of responsibility.

They are sent out from a base of operations, a small Joint Security Station (JSS) or a larger Forward Operating Base (FOB) for the purpose of combat, reconnaissance, or a combination of both.

The basic mission of a patrol is to follow a route that is known by all the personnel from the leader down to the lowest in rank.
They can walk the trek or they can be mounted.

The objective can range from keeping an eye out for anything out of the ordinary to gathering vital information from the people.

It is important in our strategy to have good relations with the local community.

The Medics in the past have offered help to Commanders because they have done good deeds helping the people. Getting vital information from the people can be most important to help keep information about enemy activity current and accurate.

The foot Soldier is vital in keeping watch for enemy attack, movement, IED's, and other enemy activities within your sector of fire.

This also helps maintain and protect the JSS and FOB security keeping at regular intervals looking out for anything out of the ordinary — which if found will be reported or dealt with as appropriate.

There are then basically two types of patrols that refer to reconnaissance patrols, which are sent to investigate some feature of interest, or to fighting patrols (US combat patrol), sent to find and engage the enemy.

Spiritually, this is the mission of the Rosary Patrol, we are out patrolling the areas of operation praying for the needs of the Church, the Pope and his Missionary and General Intentions.

It is important to know what the enemy activity is, to be able to identify the enemy who many times will hide among the civilians. They may look like Christians, sometimes may act like Christians, but in the end, are set out to destroy or cripple the Churches mission.

There are times when we must put on the whole armor of God and ward off the fiery darts of the enemy. Sometimes, we must take action and stand up for what is right.

Some of the enemy's weapons used against us is our own apathy, our own indecisiveness, our own lack of resolve. When ever we go outside the wire, it is always important to make sure you have your weapon with you.

When you hold your rosary in your hand, that is like holding the hand of our Mother Mary who is praying with us.

No Soldier should be without this important weapon. Each Soldier should also prepare themselves before going into the Danger Zone.

You should always have a copy of the Catholic Catechism and Bible near by.

Like the Old Baltimore Catechism would say, to know God, love God, an serve God.

If you have Internet access, to have deepertruth, Catholic Answers, Defenders of the Catholic Faith, or other sources are vital important information that helps give the Soldier strategy.

Before a Soldier goes out on Patrol, Mass is very important, you need to be charged up and fortified with the Holy Spirit to give you courage.

You must frequent the Sacraments and be in the state of grace, to avoid sin at all cost.

To receive God's blessing as often as you can helps fortify the soul.

It is also important to understand and know your Chain of Command. Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Pope is his Prime Minister, the local Priest are their representatives so we should pray for them knowing they are under attack by the enemy.

The Virgin Mary is a great gift to us as our spiritual Mother. We can trust the Lord with his Mother. Do not be afraid to use your rosary especially in times of trouble.

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Deeper Truth posts 2nd best month in our history.

We are very happy to announce that within the next two days, Deeper Truth blog will surpass 500,000 hits for this year. In fact, our 7 biggest months in our history have been the 7 months of 2012. July will finish as our 2nd biggest month behind only May. In fact, July ranks #1 in terms of bandwith.

Our blog is near the top 200 religious blogs according to Technorati and our rankings on alexa place us approxiamately 10 million positions ahead of either the Jimmy Z show blog or Domain name.

It is not surprising the bitter man is throwing a tantrum.

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We are ready.

I have just finished polishing up my opening and closing statements and my questions and I am confident that I am fully prepared for any question or rebuttal from my opponent, Chad Cassano in this first debate. It is not beyond the realm of possibility that there could be a tweak or two, but for the most part, I am done. Our extensive show notes will be available once the show starts.

Chad really seems like a really nice guy and I am looking forward to a spirited, passionate
and civil debate. A debate that we fully expect to win.

Sola Fide is one of the five pillars of the protestant reformation enunciated thusly;

Protestants hold that we are saved by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone by Scripture alone for His Glory alone. These five tenants, called the five solas, are Baloney alone.

There is not one shred of Biblical evidence for any of the five.

In fact, the one, singular appearance of any of these 5 terms in Scripture occurs in James 2:24, specifically and explicitly refuting it.

24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

The difference goes to the core of the division between protestants and Catholics- a division that Jesus Himself prophesied.

Luke 22:30-32

30 That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

There is no unity in protestantism. Everyone is alone. That is proof enough that it isn't the gospel Christ brought the world. This apostolate must and will make that case.

We are ready.

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The Catholic Defender: Debra, Your Wrong Again

One of my favorite early Church leaders was Pope Sylvester I. He was raised through the terrible persecutions of the Christians.

He understood what hardship was, he had friends and associates who died at the hands of the Romans. He himself was a Roman. All that would get you was a quick beheading like St. Paul.

December 31 is the Feast day of St Sylvester I who served as Pope between January 31, 314 A.D. to December 31, 335.

He became a bridge between the terrible persecutions by the Romans and the conversion of the Roman Empire.

For many Religious, it was a death sentence to accept positions in the Church. St. Sylvester was the Bishop of Rome at a very important time in history, especially Church history.

Constantine's conversion, was it real, what was the chief influence? This writer believes it was real because of the evidence of history.

Constantine's Mother, St. Helena was a Christian and this did have an effect on Constantine, who had been in the court of Diocletian.

Constantine burned bishops to the stake, but as he did so, he began to develop a respect for their faith. With his Mother becoming a Christian, he became more open to the Faith.

St. Helena discovered the true cross in Jerusalem. Through a pre-planned event, she had torches lighted beginning from the hill tops from Jerusalem going all the way to Rome to report word of their finding to Constantine.

St. Eusebius baptized Constantine as an older man, but it is what he did when he became Emperor that established his Christian beliefs.

It is believed that a sign from Christ appeared as a cross in the sky with the words, "by this sign you shall conquer", Constantine placed the cross on the shields of his Soldiers.

Constantine routes the battle at the Milvian Bridge even though he was out manned and his forces were not as well equipped.

The enemy dies trying to flee back over the Tiber river. This would become very important during the Papal reign of St. Sylvester.

Constantine was determined to grant Christianity freedom, the Church received property and funds that had been confiscated.

The Edict of Milan gave the Church freedom to come out of the catacombs, the caves, and the homes.

St. Peters was built by Constantine in honor of the Martyrdom of St. Peter at Vatican Hill in 67 A.D.

A mountain was moved literally to build this monument in honor of where the remains of St. Peter were laid to rest.

St. John Lateran was made the Popes Cathedral. This is very important because St. Sylvester was receiving great favor from the Roman Emperor.

The Pope sent delegates to represent him at the Council of Arles in 314 A.D. wanting to end the Donatist Schism.

Trouble began to brew again with another heresy began storming the land as a Deacon named Arius was causing a mighty stir.

The Council of Nicaea was called to end the division, St. Sylvester sent two embassies who represented his authority and concerns.

He was an older man by this time and was not able to make such a trip. There were about 300 bishops from the known world who gathered for the great Council.

The finished product was the defined teaching of the Trinity and the Nicene Creed. There were a number of disciplines that were debated among them was granting forgiveness to apostates who caved in to the Roman Persecutions.

Many of the bishops suffered greatly and this was a major issue. Ultimately, the Church granted repentance to those who would returned. St. Sylvester was the 32nd successor to St. Peter.

Despite being an older man, broken due to the sufferings he received, he served the Church as the Lord's Chief Steward for about 21 years.

He maintained the unity of the Church showing himself a man of peace, forgiveness, and humility. His love for the Liturgy and the Mass, he continued to improve devotion. He built schools and cemeteries, placed monuments over the sites of the martyrs.

Debra, the Saints of the early Church speaks loudly against you and those who want to rewrite history and tell the lies of men. The Catholic Faith is built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets, the saints bear witness to the truth.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Protestant vs Catholic debate series round 1

Next Saturday, August 4th at 10:00 PM eastern is round 1 of our 8 debate series with Chad Cassano, protestant evangelical. Chad will be debating John Benko in debates 1, 2, 5 & 6 and Donald Hartley in debates 3,4, 7 & 8.

Eric Ingram has been enlisted as the moderator for all 8 debates and promises to be far more level-headed, cerebral and fair than our last moderator was.

The first debate is on the protestant doctrine of Sola Fide (Salvation by faith alone). Arguing in the affirmative will be Chad, John Benko will argue against it.

The debate can be heard right here in it's entirety. Audience questions by call or chat room may be taken after closing statements, at our discretion. Limit 1 question and 1 follow up. Call-in number is 646-595-2071 and you must register with Blogtalkradio to participate in the chat room.

The show will start with brief introductions at 10:00 PM Eastern.

Chad will offer an opening statement of up to 10 minutes in length.
John will rebut (up to 5 minutes)

Commercial break.

John's open.
Chad's rebuttal.

Commercial break.

Chad asks John question #1
John's response (up to 2 minutes)
Chad optional rebuttal (up to 1 minute)

John asks Chad question #2
Chad's response.
John optional rebuttal.

Repeat, back and forth through 8 questions.

Final break

Chad closing statement (up to 3 minutes)
John closing statement.

Optional audience questions.

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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Richard Lane to appear on deepertruth, looks like this coming Friday! Richard Lane has appeared on EWTN's "The Journey Home" with Marcus Grodi as well as other shows with Scott Hahn and others.

Please tune in this coming Friday, 8:00 Eastern, 7:00 Central. We are working this out and this should be a good evening of Catholic testimony.

Richard Lane is a convert to the Catholic Faith from Protestantism and is a dynamic speaker for the Lord and his Church.

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*BEST OF DTB #204* The Catholic Defender: Confession, the Mercy Seat of God

At today's bible study, we were discussing the Pharisees during the time of Jesus. How could they be so out of touch with who Jesus is? As the discussion continued, people were wondering how they would respond if they were living back then and witnessed the signs and wonders our Lord performed. I felt that we do not really need to think about what it was like then because we are called right here and now.

How many people today display the lack of faith today in following the Catholic Church? How many people would think, "Well, if I was living back then I would have been a follower of Christ. Like St. Peter, we would pledge our allegience to the Lord, but how many of us would stand by the Lord when the first insults are fired?

How many of us will stand fast for the Lord when they mock you and spit on you? How many of us are willing to stand with the Lord when they threaten you with death? How many of us are willing to forsake our Lord for a smile and a handshake? If people 400 years from now could look back on our generation, would they wonder how we could have been so blind as the Pharisee of yesturday?
Judas sold Jesus out for 30 pieces of silver, how much did it take for us to leave the Church? Who is responsible when we choose to forsake the faith of the Apostles? We can look back and judge the Pharisee of their blindness, but are we that much different today? In a world where 33,000 denominations are challenging us to join them in rebellion.

If you are a faithful Catholic, probably you might have been strong enough to follow Christ and stand with him through the trial, however, how many of us have abandoned Jesus for another Bride? We are in the time of apostasy, we are called to reach out and bring them home. It says in James 5:19-20, "My brothers, if anyone among you should stray from the truth and someone bring them back, he should know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins".

When you go to Confession, the Lord takes those sins you confess and throws them into the sea of forgetfulness and remembers them no more. You are given a judgement in the Confessional, a judgement of mercy. The Confessional is the Mercy Seat of God! The Lord gave to St. Faustina the revelation of Divine Mercy. Jesus says the hardest worst sinner is most deserving for this mercy as Jesus does not wish the death of the sinner, but their true repentance.

I have often been asked the question, “Why do Catholics need to go to a priest instead of Jesus, since He is the Mediator between God and man.” We go to confession in obedience to Jesus’ command that gave this authority to his apostles.

This transfer of authority came after His resurrection and is recorded as follows,“on the evening of that first day of the week, even though the disciples hadlocked the doors of the place where they were for fear of the Jews…Jesus came and stood before them ‘Peace be with you,’ he said. When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. At the sight of the Lord, the Disciples rejoiced. ‘Peace be with you,’ he said again. ‘As the Father has sent me so I send you.’… He breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.”

The Council of Trent (1556) defined the power to forgive sins in verse 23 as the same power exercised in the Sacrament of Penance. This power could have only reached our present age through Apostolic Succession where the Apostles ordained successors and broadened the faith throughout the world.

St. Paul gives special consideration to this Sacrament with the intent to instruct his listeners its importance. He states, "So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come. And all this IS fromGod, who has reconciled us to himself through Christ and given us THE MINISTRYOF RECONCILIATION, namely, God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ,not counting their trespasses against them and entrusting TO US the message of reconciliation. So WE ARE AMBASSADORS FOR CHRIST, as if GOD WERE APPEALINGTROUGH US. We implore you on BEHALF OF CHRIST, BE RECONCILED TO GOD ( 2 COR 5Vs 17-20).

St. Paul then invites us, "Working together, then, WE APPEAL TO YOU NOT TO RECEIVE THE GRACE OF GOD IN VAIN". Some thoughts; from the Webster's NewWorld Dictionary, AMBASSADOR is:
1. The highest-ranking diplomaticrepresentative appointed by one country or government...(when you recognize theChurch as the Kingdom of God on earth, this definition easily fits the mark).
2. A special representative, is one on a special diplomatic mission.
3. An official agent with a special mission ( Christ appointed his Apostles to carryout this "special mission"). BEHALF is defined as, "ME, in phrase on (mi)behalf, on (my side). I speak in his behalf, on behalf of speaking for;representing (This is exactly what the priest does)!

This Sacramental authority Jesus gives his Apostles should not be confused with the moral obligation to forgive seventy times seven. In the great sacrament, Jesus chooses to forgive in the action of his Ministers. Just as God may heal someone through a minister, he established the priesthood for the purpose of spiritual healing.

The Council of Constantinople (553) declared that John 20:22 meant that thespirit was truly given and the breathing on the disciples was not merely symbolic. This action recalls Genesis 2:7 where God breathed life into Adam and gave him the natural spirit of life force. St. John announces that the life-source for supernatural life is given, which is the seal of the Holy Spirit.

The Confessional, then, is not of man-made origin, but is a God-breathed action of the Holy Spirit. It has come down the ages through the Church that Jesus built. When you go to Confession to the local priest, a bishop ordained him. The bishop himself was ordained by a previous bishop and the transfer of authority can be traced all the way back to the Apostles.

People who do not understand the Church often challenge its concepts by stating that a given teaching was invented on such and such a date. The ‘invention’ dates, however, usually coincide with councils that met for the purpose of clarifying any teaching that was being misunderstood or challenged in some way.

In the case of Confession, some try to say that the Catholic Church invented the teaching of Confession in the 4th century. But, it preceded the 4th and earlier centuries, and was part of what Jesus commands when he states in the gospel of Matthew, “Teach them to carry out everything I have commanded you.” The apostles are to teach the world not merely one doctrine, such as the doctrine of Resurrection, but all doctrines pronounced by Jesus.
In deed, His historical teaching and the entire gospel the Catholic Church has safeguarded message. Jesus promised the Catholic Church that the gates of hell would not prevail against it, that he would be with us until the end of the age, and that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son and remains with us until Jesus returns. His Church has His promise, His protection, and His seal. It is up to each person to be faithful or fall. We call this free will. In the meantime, Jesus truly waits for us in the Sacrament of Confession.

The Catholic Defender: Obama, Chicago, Boston

San Fransico: Are you ready for the "New Americans" ready to take back this land! The Catholic Faith is an awakened giant, the rich and poor, red and yellow will never give up the fight for freedom to live out our faith!

I encourage all who call upon the name of the Lord to check out Chick-Fill-A to stand for true marriage!

This is God's Country! Stand up for the flag of the United States of America which stands for freedom. This was what the Father's of our Country won in the Revelutionary War, that is what we have done ever since.

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*BEST OF DTB #203* The Catholic Defender: Confirmation, the seal of the Holy Spirit

From the writing Ordo Confirmation is (550 A.D.) the Bishop invokes the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, “All powerful God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, by water and the Holy Spirit, You freed your sons and daughters from sin, and gave them new life. Send your Holy Spirit upon them to be their helper and guide. Give them the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of right judgment and courage, the spirit of knowledge and reverence. Fill them with the spirit of wonder and awe in your presence. We ask this through Jesus Christ Our Lord.”

The Sacrament of Confirmation is one of the seven Sacraments that our Lord established through the Church for ministering to his people. The coming of the Holy Spirit began with Pentecost, and its associated miracles.

The Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles, then, and has remained with us ever since. The primary purpose of the Holy Spirit is to make us holy.

This begins at Baptism. The Holy Spirit implants sanctifying grace, empowering us with faith and love. The faith can be embodied in its attitudes and rites before it is explicitly formulated.

Acts 8:14-17 states, “Now when the Apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit; for it had not yet fallen on any of them, since they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit.” The "laying on with hands" is the oldest name given for the Sacrament of Confirmation. This happens when the Apostles pray over the person receiving the gift. Acts 19:5, 6 states, “And when Paul laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.”

Confirmation, thus, is the Sacrament whereby the Apostles and their successors anoint the Holy Spirit by laying of hands and anointing with charism. By the end of the second century, extraordinary and miraculous charisms had largely disappeared.

Pope Gregory the Great (604 A. D.) explained it by pointing out that such charismatic signs were “necessary in the first days of faith, but not in later years”(Homiliae in Evanfelia, Hom 29.4).

The Holy Spirit is poured out upon the recipient through the invocation of the Bishop. During the Easter Vigil the Priest is authorized to Confirm by proxy for the Bishop.

What a great blessing and honor it was to participate in this process while serving in Iraq.

I had 70 Soldiers preparing for the Easter Vigil who all had participated in the RCIA program.

In Iraq I was graced to be one of the
leading Catechists is Baghdad as we Confirmed all of the Candidates and Catechumens.

The miracle is that all those receiving this great Sacrament receive the Holy Spirit with all the blessings, as those from the beginning.

Pope Pius states in his encyclical, Mediator Dei, 11/20/47, “…that we learn of confirmation through its liturgy is significant. This highlights the importance of liturgy as a means of knowing and transmitting religious teaching.” As water is used in baptism, olive oil, perfumed with balsam is used in Confirmation, the Sacrament of the Holy Spirit. It is Pentecost extended throughout the world, perpetuated and made ever present in the church. It is a call to spread the Kingdom of Christ, to spread the message of salvation.

Pope Paul VI states in his encyclical, Divine Consortium Nature, 8/15/71, “The sharing in the divine nature which is granted to men through the grace of Christ has a certain likeness in the origin, development, and nourishing of natural life. The faithful are born anew by baptism, strengthened by the sacrament of confirmation and finally are sustained by the food of eternal life in the Eucharist.” St. Paul says, “It is God who establishes us with you in Christ; and has commissioned us; he has put his seal upon us and given us his spirit in our hearts as a guarantee” (2Corinthians 1:21,22).

The bishop who administers Confirmation will state, “Be sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit.” We are called to be a witness for Christ, guided by the Holy Spirit, to be a Holy Nation, a people set apart to be the ‘Light of the World,’ and ‘Salt of the Earth.’ Our lives should be transformed from our former self to become a new creature in Christ. In the RCIA, we encourage people to see this faith as a pilgrimage, a journey of faith to be lived. St. Paul described this growing process, the Mystery. “The mystery, which is Christ in you… Him we proclaim, warning every man teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man mature in Christ” (Colossians 1:27,28).

Jesus says, “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witness…to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8). The Church declares that those who have received the Sacrament of Confirmation “…are more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by both work and by deed as true witnesses of Christ" (Dogmatic Constitution of the Church). The church teaches us to be merciful in various ways. These are taken from Matthew 25:31-45, and are called the corporal works of mercy:

Feed the hungry.
Give drink to the thirsty.
Cloth the naked.
Shelter the homeless.
Comfort the imprisoned.
Visit the sick.
Bury the dead

The spiritual works of mercy are:

Admonish sinners.
Instruct the uninformed.
Counsel the doubtful.
Comfort the sorrowful.
Be patient with those in error.
Forgive offenses.
Pray for the living and the dead.

Let us in our day reaffirm our baptismal/confirmation vows to reject the glamor of evil and follow the most Holy Trinity; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. One simple way to do this is the holy water font.

The custom of the holy water font goes all the way back to Pope Alexander I near the year 105. He placed the font at the front of the meeting place to illustrate that the Sanctuary had been opened up for all. In the Old Testament only the priests used the holy water.

He was the fifth successor of Saint Peter.

This custom began to remind us of our baptismal vows.

Debra Smith hangs herself yet again

If there is not else of value on her online rag, Debra JM Smith's gaffe machine is a treasure trove of comic relief. Consider her latest piece of theological and historical fiction.

Debra's nonsense will be in Blue. The truth will be in black.

Luke 10 verse 16 is NOT speaking of the Catholic Church. Jesus is speaking to those who follow Him, biblical born again believers, made alive in Christ, by the Holy Spirit.

This claim is so goofy as to defy belief. It just goes to show that Debra will say anything and she really doesn't care if there is any support for it or not.

The simple historical record stands directly in her way.

Jesus is saying these words to the disciples between 30-33 AD. The first words that would become part of the New Testament would not be written for at least another 15-20 years. The first gospel wasn't written until the 50's and the last (John's) was written close to the start of the second century.

So, the church existed for at least 65 years before the 27 books of the New Testament were even written, much less canonized and placed in a single volume. (That would not happen for almost another 300 years).

Debra JM Smith claims that the Bible existed from the start of the Christian church and that the Catholic church appeared 4 centuries later. Exactly the reverse is the case. The Catholic church existed from the start and preceded the Bible by 400 years.

Luke 10:16 "He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me."

 The word is atheteo and it means to reject or set aside

Jesus is saying that those who He sends out (all true biblical born again believers) with the truth of His word, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the message of being saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone, are sent by Him.

The text suggests nothing of the sort. Debra just made that up. The text actually says the opposite, directly binding the authority of Christ, and the Father, to the teaching authority of the Apostles. He who rejects you, rejects me. This explicitly refutes the notion of Christ alone and confirms the Biblical standard that always existed of an earthly authority through whom God speaks (the prophets etc..)
Jesus is saying that people who hear, who He sends out, hear Him. This is because those who He sends out, speak His message, His word.

Debra has just defended the concept of infallibility, as it pertains to people and refuted her own doctrine of Sola Scriptura.

 He is also saying that people who despise who He sends, despise Him and therefore despise He who sent Him.

Yes, those who rejected the authority where the forerunners of today's Christ-rejecting protestants.
There is no name of a church involved in this scripture. This scripture is speaking of true biblical born again believers in Christ, going out and preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the true gospel of salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone.

A completely circular argument with no support whatsoever. The fact is that Debra cannot prove any protestant existed before 1517 or that any protestant of her particular dispensationalist/ born againist/ non-denominationalist / zionist stripe is any older than disco.

The Catholic church, on the other hand, is specifically named by Luke (the other of this Book) in the Book of Acts, Chapter 9, verse 31;

Ekklesia Kath Holos is the literal Greek origin of The Catholic Church. It is used at least as far back as 110 AD, by Ignatius of Antioch.

The message that comes from the Catholic church is not Jesus' message. 

Fallacy: Unsubstantiated premise *yawn*

The Catholic church's message includes the Catholic church itself, the false claim of Mary being a "co-redeemer" with Jesus, and man's works.

Mary is called a co-redemptrix and that argument has nothing to do with exegesis of Luke 10:16. Debra is trying to divert attention from her obvious inability to properly exegete this passage.

The Catholic church's message is NOT one of salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone.

and that is a good thing, because salvation by grace through faith in Christ alone is a false and heretical message that is actually an affront to who Christ is.

 --So, no, anyone who comes with the Catholic church's message is coming with a different gospel.

A different gospel than the one created by the protestant deformers who are currently baking in hell? Yes. Our gospel is different from that gospel because ours was received from Jesus, Himself and not some 15th-20th century wolves in sheep's clothing.

 And we see in Galatians 1:8 what scripture says about such people: "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed."

By your own words shall you be condemned, Debra (Luke 19:22)

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*BEST OF DTB #202* The Catholic Defender: Baptism, a tribute to the Trinity

The Baptism of the Lord not only begins his public ministry, it reveals the Trinity as the Father says, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased" (Matthew 3:17).

The Holy Spirit descending "like a dove and coming upon him"(Jesus).

I wrote the following as a tribute to my Mother:

I was reading the Scripture readings preparing myself for Mass. This was the 4th anniversary of my Mother's death and I was simply wanting to be at Mass. Everything I do in His name I want to dedicate for my Mother's honor. I would not be where I am if it were not for my Mother. As I was reading the second reading from St. Paul to the Colossians, I read these passages:

"Brothers and sisters: If you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God".

A light bulb just clicked on as I read that. The letter to the Colossians was written by St. Paul, sometime in the springtime of 57 A.D.

Jesus was crucified on April 3, 33 A.D.. By the time St. Paul was traveling, many in his audience were, by this time, RAISED from birth or early childhood in the Catholic Faith. The reference "For you have died" in Christ, implies they were already baptized perhaps many of them as children. That is what "raised" implies as to differentiate from those who were converts at an older age.

As I pondered this revelation, I realized that the truths of the Catholic Faith go all the way back to the Apostles. What a great gift we have that through the Apostolic Tradition, the truths of Christ can still be perpetuated all of the world. The Sacraments are the visible signs of Gods grace being poured forth upon those requesting them.

Baptism is one of the seven sacraments Jesus established. It grew out of the Old Testament cleansing of impurities (Ezekiel 36:25). John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus, began to baptize people, calling for repentance. Regarding the coming Messiah, he told the crowds, “I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming…. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Luke 3:16)

Jesus prepared the apostles through three years of teaching and enlightening them to the truth of scripture, during which time He opened their eyes to His commandments. Jesus told them, “Go therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:19-20)

Baptism has always been an important sacrament. St. Peter, on the day of Pentecost, spoke to the Jews who were celebrating Passover. They had arrived from all over the Roman Empire. The Holy Spirit moved people to accept Jesus the crucified through the words of St. Peter. He said to them, “Repent and be baptized everyone of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is made to you and your children and to all those far off, whomever the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2:38,39)

It is clear St. Peter taught that baptism washed away sins. St. Peter makes this more clear as he writes, "For Christ also suffered for sins once, the righteous for the sake of the unrighteous, that he might lead you to God. Put to death in the flesh, he was brought to life in the spirit. In it he also went to preach to the spirits in prison (purgatory), who had once been disobedient while God patiently waited in the days of Noah during the building of the ark, in which a few persons, eight in all, were saved through water. THIS PREFIGURED BAPTISM, WHICH SAVES YOU NOW. It is not a removal of dirt from the body but an appeal to God for a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 3 Vs 18-21)".

The Catholic Church teaches that baptism takes away all sin, original sin in the case of children and actual sin of those old enough to understand the concept of sin. St. Paul described baptism this way; “we were indeed buried with Him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in newness of life.” This baptism could not be only a symbol! Christ was not raised symbolically! (Romans 6:4)

St. Paul could tell you from experience what this meant. He had persecuted the faith and was on the road to Damascus to hunt down Christians when Jesus appears to him asking, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” St. Paul ends up with the priest Ananias who states, “Saul, my brother, the Lord has sent me to you on the way by which you came, that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. Immediately things like scales fell from his eyes and his sight was restored. He got up and was baptized….” (Acts 9:17-19)

The early church saw the faithful as “one body and one spirit, as you were called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all.” (Ephesians 4:5-6). The Church as always tried to echo Jesus as he states, “Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and spirit. (John 3:5). About baptism our Lord warns, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned (Mark 16:15,16).

There are two authorized methods for water baptism. Immersion is when the believer is taken and submerged fully under water. Pouring is when water is poured to flow out and run across the head of the recipient. In both cases the water must be flowing. It is valid if the person administering baptism repeats the words; “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”

The effect of baptism is that the Holy Spirit infuses sanctifying grace, which leaves an indelible mark on the soul. A priest or deacon administers baptism only once usually. However, in emergency, anyone can baptize. A doctor can baptize in critical conditions. President John F. Kennedy once honored a woman for baptizing a person who had been attacked by a shark and was approaching death. The victim had been studying the faith before this accident took place.

There are three kinds of baptism. The most common form is water baptism. Usually a candidate studies the faith through the RCIA program. This instruction helps give the candidate preparation and the opportunity to say ‘yes’ to our Lord. Another type of baptism is related to the water. It is called baptism of desire. The classical case of baptism of desire is the good thief on the cross (Luke 23: 42,43). The shark attack victim described earlier would be placed in this category, had he not been baptized. These individuals desire salvation and baptism. The third type of baptism is called the baptism of blood. It is a martyr’s death. Only the Lord knows how many have died for His namesake.

Division first arose in England concerning baptism. During the aftermath of the Protestant Reformation, two Lutherans, Thomas Munzer and Nicholas Storch, founded the Anabaptist movement in 1605. They began to rebaptize their adult followers because they rejected infant baptism. Much of the protestant movement treats baptism as a symbol, and renounces its necessity. It has become a public witness the individual makes before the community.

This picture was taken by a photographer who had promised the mother of the child he would give her a copy as she could not afford a picture.

The practice of infant baptism began during apostolic times. In the book of Acts, the households of Cornelius and Jason were all baptized. About the year 250 A.D., the Church, during a council, addressed the question concerning the baptism of infants. Should infants be baptized on the eighth day after birth, or could it be any day? The point took issue with baptism replacing circumcision, as was the Old Testament Law. This was done on the eighth day! To baptize on the eighth day recognized the need for baptism in the New Testament.

The Church favored any day to be appropriate but stressed the importance to baptize as soon as possible. The Catholic Church recognizes the value of symbolism in baptism, but, she maintains the function of grace and the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38, 39).

Mother, I thank God for you and I ask for His blessing. May you forever enjoy the happiness of heaven with Our Lord and Our Heavenly Mother! Amen!

* BEST OF DTB #201* Is Baptism necessary for Salvation? ABSOLUTELY

In one of the most convoluted contortions of logic you will ever see, Debra JM Smith argues against the clear words of 1 Peter chapter 3. Once again, refuting her is so easy it is embarrassing.
First, Peter's clear and unambiguous words;

20 Which had been some time incredulous, when they waited for the patience of God
 in the days of Noe, when the ark was a building: wherein a few, that is, eight souls,
 were saved by water. 
21 Whereunto baptism being of the like form, now saveth you also: not
 the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the examination of
 a good conscience towards God by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Now, a summation of her convoluted interpretation;

  1. We are saved by grace, not our own work. (On this point we agree. We are not saved BY works, we are saved BY Grace, received THROUGH faith, FOR works as it's completion and perfection. (Ephesians 2:8-10, James 2:21-22). In the end, our works are what Justify us and save us, as they are the proof, perfection and completion of our alleged faith.)
  2. If we are saved by Grace then the requirement for works are excluded. (a complete non-sequiter. The Bible says no such thing. In fact is says just the opposite- Romans 2:5-6)
  3. Since Mark 16 says that He believeth and is baptized will be saved and he that doesn't believe will be condemned, therefore, baptism is not necessary for salvation. (One of the most perverse contortions of logic I have ever seen)
  4. John's Baptism was of water only and Jesus' baptism brings the Holy Spirit. Therefore, there is no water involved in Jesus baptism. (not only completely against Scripture but a complete non sequiter as well)
  5. Peter is not saying that Baptism (Debra adds 'water' to the text, violating God's commandment) saves us.
  6. of like type does not draw an inference to baptism.
Debra's incoherent explanation, like everything in her heretical theology, runs smack into the brick wall that is God's word.

Let's start with Mark 16.

          16 He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned.

Mark is clearly linking belief with the action of baptism. The exegesis of the passage makes this fact inescapable.

ho pisteusas kai baptistheis sothesetai is literally translated the he having believed and having been baptized will be saved. This confirms both the past action of baptism and the past, current and continued action of belief as requirements for eventual salvation.

By comparing the Baptism of Mark 16 with that of the Eunuch in Acts 8, Debra is conceding that this is referring to what she dishonestly labels water baptism.

Mark 16b is simply stating that salvation is impossible for one who does not believe- that faith is necessary for salvation, not that it is sufficient. To say that necessity equals sufficiency is a complete non sequiter. Air is necessary for life but it is not sufficient. You must have food and water and shelter as well.

Mark 16:16a shows that Baptism is a precondition of salvation and explicitly refutes the  fallacy of once saved, always saved.

Finally, what Peter refers to in being of like form is that the few were saved by water. He is showing that Noah and the ark are a clear typology of Baptism. When Jesus referred to being Born of Water and the Spirit, he was not contrasting vaginal birth with spiritual birth as Debra perversely suggests. He was referring to how the visible sign of water is infused with the invisible charism of grace and the reception of the Holy Spirit in the one, absolutely necessary Sacrament of Baptism.

On this point, Scripture simply could not be more clear.

Acts 2
38 But Peter said to them: Do penance, and be baptized every one of you in the name
 of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins: and you shall receive the gift of
 the Holy Ghost.  
39 For the promise is to you, and to your children, and to all that are far off,
 whomsoever the Lord our God shall call.  
40 And with very many other words did he testify and exhort them,
saying: Save yourselves from this perverse generation.  
41 They therefore that received his word, were baptized; and there
 were added in that day about three thousand souls.

Debra stands refuted.

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*BEST OF DTB #200* The Catholic Defender: Adoni

After Mass, I once had an Iraqi citizen come up to me one morning to challenge me about what the Catholic Church believes.

It was interesting in that he identified himself as a "Nestorian" Christian. He also stated that the Nestorian Believers made up about 5% of the Christians in Iraq.

Just to give a background on the Nestorians, in 431, the Catholic Church at the Council of Ephesus defined that Jesus was 100% God and 100% man in one person.

Nestorius, the Patriarch of Constantinople at the time had questioned the apostolic tradition which emphasized the disunity between Christ's human and divine natures.

To give added weight to the Catholic position, Mary was given the title "Theotokos", Mother of God.

That Mary was not just the Mother of the humanity of Jesus but the whole person. Jesus was conceived and born fully one person with two natures. He was not someone simply with multiple personalities.

My friend came up to me asking me what an "Apostle" was.

I simply responded that an apostle is one who is sent. Then I elaborated a little bit more explaining that Jesus had prepared his Disciples for three years for the missionary work that he was calling them to.

Not only does Jesus give the Apostles the "Deposit of Faith" but also the authority to proclaim it to all the nations.

That for nearly 2,000 years the Catholic Church has been empowered by the Holy Spirit to preach good news setting the captives free.

My Iraqi friend listened intently to me as I explained this to him when he asked me a second question.

He asked me why we were making a God out of Mary. To him, this was what kept the Nestorians from coming back to the Catholic Faith.

I thought about that for a second and I responded that the title "Theotokos" is an important title not necessarily for Mary, but because it identifies who Jesus is, Jesus is the Incarnation.

Jesus asked his Apostles who people say the Son of Man is and during the early centuries of the Church, that question was hammered out in the face of all the various heresies.

Nestorianism was just another heresy the Catholic Church had to contend with. I quickly posed this question to my friend:

"What is the difference from the Catholic definition "Theotokos" Mother of God, and Elizabeth's recognition of Jesus as "Adoni" or "my Lord"?

(The Bible records the Greek word Kyrios which is the translation of the Hebrew Adonai)

This is a very famous scripture coming from Luke 1:39-45, "In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and she exclaimed with a loud cry. 'Blessed are you among women. and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted me, that the mother of My LORD (Adoni) should come to me? For behold, when the voice of your greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leaped for joy. And there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord".This leads into the great song of praise from Mary, "My soul magnifies the Lord (Adoni), and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm, he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts, he has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity forever".

As I finished what I was saying, my Iraqi friend became highly interested in our Bible Study I had been conducting there at the Division Chapel. Oh, wouldn't it be great to bring back those who have wondered from the fold so long ago? Sometimes we can only do so one person at a time!

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Friday, July 27, 2012

*BEST OF DTB #199* The Catholic Defender: The Sacrament of Marriage

Oddly, there are those who attack the Catholic Church on the teaching on Marriage. They want people to think that the Catholic Church somehow reduces Marriage when in fact, the Church elevates Marriage to a sacrament in obedience to Christ.

As you read this article and watch the video at the end, I invite you to another round of Chick-fill-a to take a stand for traditional marriage!

Marriage is one of the seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church.

It is really the first Covenant between Adam and Eve (Covenant of marriage).

Genesis 2:23-24 states, "the man said: 'This one at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; This one shall be called woman, for out of her man this one has been taken'. That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body".

In the Old Testament, a Covenant is an exchange of persons in contrast to a contract which is an exchange of things. Marriage fits this perfectly as it mirrors the Covenant God makes with his people. It is interesting that God referred to Israels unfaithfulness to Him as adultery when they chose to follow false gods.

The Israelites were allowed to marry anyone they pleased, "provided they marry into a clan of their ancestral tribe so that no heritage of the Israelites will pass from one tribe to another, but all the Israelites will retain their own ancestral heritage" (Numbers 36:6-7).

Moses will eventually grant a written bill of divorce because of the hardness of heart. Deuteronomy 24:1-4 states, "When a man, after marrying a woman and having relations with her, is later displeased with her because he finds in her something indecent, and therefore he writes out a bill of divorce and hands it to her, thus dismissing her from his house: if on leaving his house she goes and becomes the wife of another man, and the second husband, too, comes to dislike her and dismisses her from his house by handing her a written bill of divorce; or if this second man who has married her, dies; then her former husband, who dismissed her, may not again take her as his wife after she has become defiled. That would be an abomination before the Lord, and you shall not bring such guilt upon the land which the Lord, your God, is giving you as a heritage".

Jesus refers to this speaking to some Pharisees who had approached Him. He was asked about divorce, Jesus responded, "Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female' and for this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, no human being must separate. They said to Him, 'Then why did Moses command that a man give the woman a bill of divorcee and dismiss her'? He said to them, 'Because of the hardness of your hearts Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. I say to you, whoever divorces his wife (unless the marriage is unlawful) and marries another commits adultery" (Matthew 19:3-9).

This is a very important scripture here! Who is it that declares a marriage "unlawful"?

Can any husband call his marriage unlawful?

No, he or she cannot make that claim. The "annulment" of a marriage is not a divorce, it is a marriage that is dissolved because it was found to be unlawful. It was never a true Sacramental marriage.

What is the process to obtain an annulment?

What is the base for having an annulment?

A man or woman is not capable of declaring whether a marriage is annulled or not. It has to come from the Catholic Church who provides a tribunal to investigate if a marriage can be annulled.

Matthew 18:15-18 states, "If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have won over your brother. If he does not listen to you, so that 'every fact may be established on the testimony of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell the Church. If he refuses to listen even to the Church, treat him as you would a Gentile or a tax collector. Amen, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven".

You take the matter to the Church and the tribunal will decide. Today, there are allot of annulments taking place, it is like Canon Lawyers have taken this scripture "unlawful marriage" and builds each case just like a regular case in court.

It has a feel very much like a court. You have a Canon Lawyer who defends the marriage while you have an advocate who tries to prove your case based on the evidence. It can take sometimes more than a year or longer for such a decision.

If there has been no remarriage, the individuals involved are not banned from the Sacraments. If there has already been a "remarriage" the individuals cannot receive the Sacraments until a positive decision has been reached and the current marriage validated.

We are living at a time when marriage is being attacked as divorce is more than 50% in the United States, there are Socialistic teachers and followers who are wanting to change what marriage is.

There are liberal Judges who are legislating from the bench trying to justify homosexual marriage. This is becoming a threat to the Sacrament of marriage.

Pope Pius XII in 1950 at the canonization of St. Maria Goretti warned that in the future the attacks on marriage would be great. The creation of the Birth Control Pill had much to do with the advent of the sexual revolution.

Pope Paul VI recognized the threat as the attack on the family became evident. Not all marriages are blessed as many are conducted outside the Church. Jesus warns, "For as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man".
We know that Jesus blesses valid marriages such as the wedding feast of Cana (John 2:1-12).

Jesus is clearly referring to a secular humanistic condition of many in the last days.

Many times I have spoken to couples encouraging them with my triangle formula. Christ is at the top of the triangle, both spouses are at either end of the other two points.

The closer they move towards Jesus, the closer they move to each other building that foundation that will help them through any valley or any mountain they have to cross over. Not a day goes by that my wife and I tell each other of our love for each other. She is God's greatest gift to me.

To many times people are quick to abandon their vows. Marriage is a gift to His people. It is the perversion of this gift that is the problem. The Lord wants to bless you abundantly but many times because of our hardness of hearts, we fall into sin many times leading us into a spiritual condition where we are out of the Church.

There are those who have abandoned the Catholic Faith because they are divorced and remarried who rejects the authority of the Church. There are those who forsake marriage for a life of immorality, for orgies, and the like.

There are those who want to make homosexual union a "marriage" which is an abomination against God. All of this us unlawful, St. Paul warns, "We know that the law is good, provided that one uses it as law, with the understanding that the law is meant not for a righteous person but for the lawless and unruly, the godless and sinful, the unholy and profane, those who kill their fathers or mothers, murderers, the unchaste, sodomites (homosexuals), kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is opposed to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which I have been entrusted" (1 Timothy 1:8-11).

The gospel St. Paul was entrusted has been given to us through this ministry. The (Catholic)bishops today is the authority for us to believe the gospel message. Let us pray for all Christian men and women that their marriages will be built upon the foundation of the gospel of peace. That children will be raised in loving households being shown good examples of what a father and mother should be. Let forgiveness be center for all of our faults.

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