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Four Hundred Million "Infallible" Protestant Popes

replying to the disinformation in Evangelical Outreach's "Information for Catholics"

Chapter 5 of Truth for Catholics

"Whatever is true in Protestantism, the Reformers brought from the Church when they left. Whatever is peculiar to Protestantism is false". (Pauline Zingleman)

Evangelical Outreach (EO) purports to teach about Catholic doctrine on its Information [sic] for Catholics website in its Papal Infallibility webpage.

A brief moment of complete agreement

Evangelical Outreach begins with the following pronouncement: "Papal infallibility is one of the great differences between Catholicism and Protestantism." With that, I couldn't agree more.

But EO continues: "Very few seem to be aware of the awesome implications of this Catholic dogma." With that, I must disagree. For very few, rather, seem to be aware of the awful implications of the absence of that Catholic dogma among Protestants. To that, I shall return below.

Quotations on papal infallibility

Evangelical Outreach quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and from Vatican Council II on the subject of papal infallibility (bolded as by EO, bracketed parts added by me):

"The Roman Pontiff, head of the college of bishops, enjoys this infallibility in virtue of his office, when, as supreme pastor and teacher of all the faithful — who confirms his brethren in the faith — he proclaims by a definitive act a doctrine pertaining to faith or morals" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, Liguori Publications, 1994, p.235). [CCC #891]

"The infallibility, however, with which the divine redeemer wished to endow his Church in defining doctrine pertaining to faith and morals, is co-extensive with the deposit of revelation, which must be religiously guarded and loyally and courageously expounded. The Roman Pontiff, head of the college of bishops, enjoys this infallibility in virtue of his office, when, as supreme pastor and teacher of all the faithful — who confirms his brethren in the faith (cf. Lk. 22:32) — he proclaims in an absolute decision a doctrine pertaining to faith and morals" (Vol. 1, p.380). [This is from Lumen gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, paragraph 25]

"We believe in the infallibility enjoyed by the Successor of Peter when he speaks ex cathedra as shepherd and teacher of all the faithful, an infallibility which the whole Episcopate also enjoys when it exercises with him the supreme magisterium" (Vol. 2, p. 392). [This, contrary to EO's assertion, is not from Vatican II, but from Pope Paul VI, Credo of the People of God]

"This loyal submission of the will and intellect must be given, in a special way, to the authentic teaching authority of the Roman Pontiff, even when he does not speak ex cathedra in such wise, indeed, that his supreme teaching authority be acknowledged with respect, and that one sincerely adhere to decisions made by him conformably with his manifest mind and intention ..." (Vol. 1, p. 379). [This, too, is from Lumen gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, paragraph 25]

(EO's attribution to Vatican II of a document of Pope Paul VI shows once again how Evangelical Outreach doesn't comprehend the most basic of facts about its sources.)

Quotations on the necessity of the Church to salvation

Evangelical Outreach then quotes from different sources, all teaching the necessity of the Church for salvation (bolded as by EO, bracketed parts added by me):

"There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside of which no one at all can be saved" (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215.) [Actually, this is taken from the Council's constitution On the Catholic faith, not from Pope Innocent]

"We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff" (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 1302.)

"[The Holy Roman Church] firmly believes, professes and teaches that none of those who are not within the Catholic Church, not only Pagans, but Jews, heretics and schismatics, can ever be partakers of eternal life, but are to go into the eternal fire 'prepared for the devil, and his angels' (Mt. xxv. 41), unless before the close of their lives they shall have entered into that Church; also that the unity of the Ecclesiastical body is such that the Church's sacraments avail only those abiding in that Church, and that fasts, almsdeeds, and other works of piety which play their part in the Christian combat are in her alone productive of eternal rewards; moreover, that no one, no matter what alms he may have given, not even if he were to shed his blood for Christ's sake, can be saved unless he abide in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church." (Mansi, Concilia, xxxi, 1739.) (Pope Eugene IV, The Bull Cantate Domino, 1441). [Actually, 4 February 1442]

(EO's attribution to Pope Innocent III of a document of Lateran Council IV shows yet again how Evangelical Outreach doesn't comprehend the most basic of facts about its sources.)

Evangelical Outreach's erroneous conclusion

From those quotations, Evangelical Outreach concludes: "To believe in papal infallibility is to believe ONLY Roman Catholics can be saved, for they alone are in submission to the Pope".

On the surface, Evangelical Outreach would seem to be correct. And, as I have amply demonstrated in previous Truth for Catholics articles, Evangelical Outreach is quite content to be superficial, not only about Catholic teachings but also—or especially—about biblical teachings.

The complex reality of the Church's teachings

So, what is the real story about what the Catholic Church teaches about its necessity for the salvation of every human being? Here is a brief summary, in my own words:

The Lord Jesus Christ founded the Catholic Church to be the ordinary means by which the salvation He won by His passion, death, and resurrection would be administered to all men from that time forward. Simon Peter the Apostle was the foundation on which the Lord Himself built His Church, and Peter's ministry continues in his successor the pope and is, by the Lord's own design, necessary for the integrity of the Church. To be saved, it is necessary to be joined to the Catholic Church—if that be possible. The sacrament of baptism (using water and the Trinitarian formula) joins a person to the Catholic Church; those baptized outside formal communion with the Catholic Church are thus joined to it imperfectly and incompletely, but they are nonetheless joined to it. Those to whom membership in the Catholic Church is impossible—whether because of complete ignorance of the Church or because of some other just reason—may be saved outside the ordinary means. This is because all men have been redeemed by the Lord's passion, death, and resurrection, God desires all men to be saved, and though the Catholic Church is bound by the means which God established—the sacraments, faith in Jesus Christ, and righteous living according to the Gospel—God Himself is not so bound.

Now we can see why EO's conclusion is mistaken: Evangelical Outreach left out of account the necessary factor that it be possible for the person to join the Catholic Church.

EO is not to blame for that, I suppose, because the teachings Evangelical Outreach quoted also leave that out of account—either because the necessary factor was assumed by the teaching or because impossibility of joining the Church was not at issue. Given the historical context of the times, the Catholic teachings that EO quoted were addressed to those who were knowingly outside the unity of the Catholic Church, to those who denied that the papacy is necessary to the integrity of the Church, or to those who denied that the Catholic Church was the means established by Christ to bring His salvation to all mankind.

Er... well... maybe I can blame Evangelical Outreach for not knowing the Church's teaching. For EO also quotes the Catechism thus:

"The Church's relationship with the Muslims. 'The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind's judge on the last day' " (Catechism of the Catholic Church, Liquori Publications, 1994, p.223). [CCC #841]

Evangelical Outreach calls that a "direct contrast" and a "contradiction", compared to the quotation from the Ecumenical Council of Florence; but, as I have shown above, that is not the case. Had EO really read the Catechism (especially ##830-856) with an honest desire to understand Catholic teaching, EO wouldn't be able to accuse the Church of "direct contrast" that is merely superficial and of "contradiction" that is manufactured by one who is a critic looking for issues to attack rather than an inquirer seeking understanding.

No new teaching about this by Vatican II

The two-fold doctrine—that the Church is necessary to salvation but that formal membership in her is not necessarily required for salvation—is nothing new. The Catholic Encyclopedia, originally published in 1913, has a very long article on The Church; that article, by G. H. Joyce, says the following about the Church as "The Necessary Means of Salvation" (I have bolded some passages that I think are most noteworthy):

In the preceding examination of the Scriptural doctrine regarding the Church, it has been seen how clearly it is laid down that only by entering the Church can we participate in the redemption wrought for us by Christ. Incorporation with the Church can alone unite us to the family of the second Adam, and alone can engraft us into the true Vine. Moreover, it is to the Church that Christ has committed those means of grace through which the gifts He earned for men are communicated to them. The Church alone dispenses the sacraments. It alone makes known the light of revealed truth. Outside the Church these gifts cannot be obtained. From all this there is but one conclusion: Union with the Church is not merely one out of various means by which salvation may be obtained: it is the only means.

This doctrine of the absolute necessity of union with the Church was taught in explicit terms by Christ. Baptism, the act of incorporation among her members, He affirmed to be essential to salvation. "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: he that believeth not shall be condemned" (Mark, xvi, 16). Any disciple who shall throw off obedience to the Church is to be reckoned as one of the heathen: he has no part in the kingdom of God (Matt., xviii, 17). St. Paul is equally explicit. "A man that is a heretic", he writes to Titus, "after the first and second admonition avoid, knowing that he that is such a one is... condemned by his own judgment" (Tit., iii, 10 sq.). The doctrine is summed up in the phrase, Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus. This saying has been the occasion of so many objections that some consideration of its meaning seems desirable. It certainly does not mean that none can be saved except those who are in visible communion with the Church. The Catholic Church has ever taught that nothing else is needed to obtain justification than an act of perfect charity and of contrition. Whoever, under the impulse of actual grace, elicits these acts receives immediately the gift of sanctifying grace, and is numbered among the children of God. Should he die in these dispositions, he will assuredly attain heaven. It is true such acts could not possibly be elicited by one who was aware that God has commanded all to join the Church, and who nevertheless should willfully remain outside her fold. For love of God carries with it the practical desire to fulfill His commandments. But of those who die without visible communion with the Church, not all are guilty of willful disobedience to God's commands. Many are kept from the Church by Ignorance. Such may be the case of numbers among those who have been brought up in heresy. To others the external means of grace may be unattainable. Thus an excommunicated person may have no opportunity of seeking reconciliation at the last, and yet may repair his faults by inward acts of contrition and charity.

It should be observed that those who are thus saved are not entirely outside the pale of the Church. The will to fulfill all God's commandments is, and must be, present in all of them. Such a wish implicitly includes the desire for incorporation with the visible Church: for this, though they know it not, has been commanded by God. They thus belong to the Church by desire (voto). Moreover, there is a true sense in which they may be said to be saved through the Church. In the order of Divine Providence, salvation is given to man in the Church: membership in the Church Triumphant is given through membership in the Church Militant. Sanctifying grace, the title to salvation, is peculiarly the grace of those who are united to Christ in the Church: it is the birthright of the children of God. The primary purpose of those actual graces which God bestows upon those outside the Church is to draw them within the fold. Thus, even in the case in which God Saves men apart from the Church, He does so through the Church's graces. They are joined to the Church in spiritual communion, though not in visible and external communion. In the expression of theologians, they belong to the soul of the Church, though not to its body. Yet the possibility of salvation apart from visible communion with the Church must not blind us to the loss suffered by those who are thus situated. They are cut off from the sacraments God has given as the support of the soul. In the ordinary channels of grace, which are ever open to the faithful Catholic, they cannot participate. Countless means of sanctification which the Church offers are denied to them. It is often urged that this is a stern and narrow doctrine. The reply to this objection is that the doctrine is stern, but only in the sense in which sternness is inseparable from love. It is the same sternness which we find in Christ's words, when he said: "If you believe not that I am he, you shall die in your sin" (John, viii, 24). The Church is animated with the spirit of Christ; she is filled with the same love for souls, the same desire for their salvation. Since, then, she knows that the way of salvation is through union with her, that in her and in her alone are stored the benefits of the Passion, she must needs be uncompromising and even stern in the assertion of her claims. To fail here would be to fail in the duty entrusted to her by her Lord. Even where the message is unwelcome, she must deliver it.

It is instructive to observe that this doctrine has been proclaimed at every period of the Church's history. It is no accretion of a later age. The earliest successors of the Apostles speak as plainly as the medieval theologians, and the medieval theologians are not more emphatic than those of today. From the first century to the twentieth there is absolute unanimity. St. Ignatius of Antioch writes: "Be not deceived, my brethren. If any man followeth one that maketh schism, he doth not inherit the kingdom of God. If any one walketh in strange doctrine, he hath no fellowship with the Passion" (ad Philad., n. 3). Origen says: "Let no man deceive himself. Outside this house, i. e. outside the Church, none is saved" (Hom. in Jos., iii, n. 5 in P. G., XII, 841). St. Cyprian speaks to the same effect: "He cannot have God for his father, who has not the Church for his mother" (De Unit., c. vi). The words of the Fourth Ecumenical Council of Lateran (1215) define the doctrine thus in its decree against the Albigenses: "Una est fidelium universalis Ecclesia, extra quam nullus omnino salvatur" (Denzinger, n. 357); and Pius IX employed almost identical language in his Encyclical to the bishops of Italy (10 August, 1863): "Notissimum est catholicum dogma neminem scilicet extra catholicam ecclesiam posse salvari" (Denzinger, n. 1529).

(As I mentioned above, the Catholic Encyclopedia has a very lengthy article on the The Church. It also has articles on Pope Innocent III, Pope Eugene IV, Pope Paul VI, and Pope John Paul II.)

The "logical" outcome of Protestantism's illogical foundation

Once again, Evangelical Outreach should have quit while it was ahead—so to speak. For EO gives its readers of Papal Infallibility a suggestion that is really an opening far, far, far too   w  -  i  -  d  -  e    to not go through it:

Catholics who truly get saved show they recognize the serious implications of papal infallibility by exiting from this type of religious system to a local Protestant congregation that declares the true gospel as found in the Bible.

Actually, here is the "serious implication" of the lack of papal (or any other kind of) infallibility among Protestants: they say they take the "Bible Only" as their rule of faith, but they can't agree on essential doctrines.

Don't believe that? All of the following quotations (except those from Evangelical Outreach webpages) are from Creeds of the Churches, third edition, edited by John H. Leith (Louisville, KY: John Knox Press, 1982), and they are the official stance of their respective organizations.

Baptism: sacrament or not? Of children or not?

Lutheran: "It is taught among us that Baptism is necessary and that grace is offered through it. Children, too, should be baptized, for in Baptism they are committed to God and become acceptable to him". (pages 70-71)

Anglican (Episcopalian): "Baptism is not only a sign of profession, and mark of difference, whereby Christian men are discerned from others that be not christened, but is also a sign of Regeneration or New-Birth, whereby, as by an instrument, they that receive Baptism rightly are grafted into the Church; the promises of the forgiveness of sin, and of our adoption to be the sons of God by the Holy Ghost, are visibly signed and sealed; Faith is confirmed, and Grace increased by virtue of prayer unto God. The Baptism of young Children is in any wise to be retained tin the Church, as most agreeable with the institution of Christ". (pages 275-6)

Methodist: "Baptism is not only a sign of profession, and mark of difference, whereby Christians are distinguished from others that are not baptized; but is also a sign of regeneration, or the new birth. The baptism of young children is to be retained in the Church". (page 358)

Reformed (Presbyterian): "Baptism is a sacrament of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, not only for the solemn admission of the party baptized into the visible Church, but also to be unto him a sign and seal of the covenant of grace, of his ingrafting into Christ, of regeneration, of remission of sins, and of his giving up unto God, through Jesus Christ, to walk in newness of life.... Not only those that do actually profess faith in and obedience to Christ, but also the infants of one or both believing parents are to baptized". (page 224)

Baptist: "We believe that Christian Baptism is the immersion of a believer in water, in the name of the Father and Son, and Spirit, to show forth in a solemn and beautiful emblem, our faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, with its purifying power". (page 338)

Evangelical Outreach: "To summarize, we just learned: (1) That the 'Gospel' does NOT include water baptism; (2) Forgiveness of sins, everlasting life and a purified heart occur at the moment one places ALL (100%) of his/her TRUST IN JESUS ALONE FOR SALVATION; (3) Jews and Gentiles are saved the same way. Also, God gave an outward sign that Cornelius and his household's hearts were purified by faith BEFORE water baptism! Therefore, we know that water baptism is EXCLUDED from the message of FAITH IN JESUS FOR SALVATION! Peter afterwards baptized these new adult Christians. [The Bible does NOT teach baby baptism!]" (Scriptural Study Refuting Baptismal Regeneration; shouting and brackets as in the original)

The World Council of Churches sums it up neatly: "The mutual recognition of baptism, in one sense or another, has been a foundation stone in the ecumenical discussions of the present century. However, closer examination of the assumptions and implications of this fact invariably brings to light deep and wide divergences in theory and practice amongst the churches of the World Council of Churches". (page 586; emphasis added; this quotation here is not to imply that the denominations listed here belong to the World Council of Churches)

Holy Communion: Reality or Symbol?

Lutheran: "It is taught among us that the true body and blood of Christ are really present in the Supper of our Lord under the form of bread and wine and are there distributed and received. The contrary doctrine is therefore rejected". (page 71)

Anglican (Episcopalian) and Methodist: "The Supper of the Lord is not only a sign of the love that Christians ought to have among themselves one to another; but rather it is a Sacrament of our Redemption by Christ's death: insomuch that to such as rightly, worthily, and with faith, receive the same, the Bread which we break is a partaking of the Body of Christ; and likewise the Cup of Blessing is a partaking of the Blood of Christ.... The Body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten, in the Supper, only after an heavenly and spiritual manner. And the mean [sic] whereby the Body of Christ is received and eaten in the Supper, is Faith". (page 276 and similarly page 358; the Anglican and Methodist creeds are virtually identical at this point)

Reformed (Presbyterian): "The outward elements in this sacrament, duly set apart to the uses ordained by Christ, have such relation to him crucified, as that truly, yet sacramentally only, they are sometimes called by the name of the things they represent, to wit, the body and blood of Christ; albeit, in substance and nature, they still remain truly, and only, bread and wine, as they were before". (page 226)

Baptist: "We believe... the Lord's Supper, in which the members of the church, by the sacred use of bread and wine, are to commemorate together the dying love of Christ; preceded always by solemn self-examination". (page 338)

Evangelical Outreach: "In conclusion, please know that we do not receive Christ when we receive communion". (Roman Catholics [sic] and Holy Communion)

The World Council of Churches sums it up neatly: "Nowhere are the divisions of our churches more clearly evident and painful than at the Lord's Table". (page 588; emphasis added; this quotation here is not to imply that the denominations listed here belong to the World Council of Churches)

Perseverance of the saints (eternal security)?

Lutheran: "Rejected here are those who teach that persons who have once become godly cannot fall again". (page 71)

Anglican (Episcopalian) and Methodist: "Not every deadly sin willingly committed after Baptism is sin against the Holy Ghost, and unpardonable. Wherefore the grant of repentance is not to be denied so such as fall into sin after Baptism. After we have received the Holy Ghost, we may depart from grace given, and fall into sin, and by the grace of God we may arise again, and amend our lives. And therefore they are to be condemned, which say, they can no more sin as long as they live here, or deny the place of forgiveness to such as truly repent. (page 271 and similarly page 357; the Anglican and Methodist creeds are virtually identical at this point)

Reformed (Presbyterian): "They whom God hath accepted in his Beloved, effectually called and sanctified by his Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace; but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved". (page 212)

Baptist: "We believe that such only are real believers as endure unto the end; that their persevering attachment to Christ is the grand mark which distinguishes them from mere professors; that a special Providence watches over their welfare; and that they are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation". (page 337)

Evangelical Outreach: "The true plan of salvation is repentance towards God and faith in Christ Jesus (Acts 20:21). We prove our repentance by our deeds (Acts 26:20). The Lord Jesus taught the road to life is 'hard' and only a 'few' will find it (Mt. 7:13,14, NKJV). Many get saved, but afterwards fall away (Lk. 8:13; Jn. 6:66; 1 Tim. 1:19; etc.). In other words, after initial salvation we must endure to the 'end' to enter the kingdom of God and escape the lake of fire (Mt. 10:22; Heb. 3:14; Rev. 2:10,11). Eternal life comes to the repentant the moment such believe on Jesus for salvation (Jn. 3:16; 6:47; 1 Jn. 5:12,13), but there is another important aspect of eternal life that many are totally unware [sic] of in our day because of the false teaching of eternal security. According to true grace teaching, eternal life is also a HOPE (Titus 3:7), yet to be REAPED (Gal. 6:8,9) in the AGE TO COME (Mk. 10:30) for only the ones who PERSIST IN DOING GOOD (Rom. 2:7) and DO NOT GROW WEARY AND GIVE UP (Gal. 6:9)". (Did Jesus Teach Eternal Security?; shouting and emphasis as in the original)

Pre? post? or neither?

Here, I depart from using Leith's Creeds of the Churches, for the historic, formulated creeds do not touch upon a topic of raging controversy among some Protestants: eschatology—that is, what is going to happen at the end of time.

David B. Currie surveys the topic in his book Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic. (I can almost hear the agonized groans among fundamentalists when they first encounter the title of that book.) In what is admittedly a brief account, here is what he has to say about it:

The discussion can get confusing, for it centers on a disagreement about when Christ's Second Coming will occur in relation to his earthly one-thousand-year reign. This reign of Christ is called the millennium, or Kingdom. There are three alternatives: premillennial, amillennial, and postmillennial. (page 180)

Postmillennialists believe that the church must usher in a time of peace and holiness for one thousand years before Christ will come again.... There are not a great many postmillennial Evangelicals today.... Catholics and most "mainline" evangelicals are amillennial, although it is an oversimplification to think that the views of these two groups are identical. Amillennialists believe that the Christian church is the millennium spoken of in the Bible. We are in the millennium now.... Most "free" Evangelicals are premillennial, especially at the lay level. Premillennialists believe that Christ's Second Coming will occur immediately prior to the thousand years of peace and holiness.... (page 181)

Premillennialism is so important to some of them ["free" Evangelicals] that they refuse fellowship to evangelicals who hold a different eschatological view, such as Presbyterians, Reformed, and Methodists. (page 180)

When Colleen and I decided that we would become Catholics, we discussed those issues that would be the hardest for certain friends to handle.... She was surprised that I insisted that our departure from premillennialism would be the major stumbling block for certain clergy we knew. She was even more amazed when it turned out that I was correct. (page 179)

(See what Patrick Madrid had to say about Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic in his "Personal Picks" webpage.)

Doctrinal chaos—the fruit of biblical teaching?

As you can see from the string of quotations above, the notion that Catholics who "get saved" should hie themselves to "a local Protestant congregation that declares the true gospel as found in the Bible" would be hilarious were it not so tragic—were it not so insane.

For all the denominations quoted above—Lutheran, Anglican, Episcopalian, Methodist, Reformed, Presbyterian, Baptist—all of them profess "the Bible Alone". All of them profess that no doctrine is binding upon a Christian's conscience unless it can be found, or (perhaps) directly deduced, from the Holy Bible. Not all of them say that Church teaching is worthless—but all of them do say that the Holy Bible is the only infallible source of inerrant doctrine.

And, what's more to my point, they all say that their doctrines come from the Holy Bible, as they profess doctrine must do. All their doctrines, including the ones I have quoted above.

Look at those quotations again. About baptism: some say it conveys grace and may be administered to infants, others that it does no such thing and may not be given to infants. About communion: some say it is truly the Body and Blood of Christ, others speak ambiguously, others say no way. About eternal security: some say it is true, others refute it vociferously. And about the millennium: some are "pre-", some are "post-", and some are "a-" millennial. And they all say that these doctrines—these mutually contradictory doctrines—are taught in the Holy Bible.

So, Evangelical Outreach is arguing against the belief of at least some Protestants, in the following webpages: Scriptural Study Refuting Baptismal Regeneration, Roman Catholics [sic] and Holy Communion, and Did Jesus Teach Eternal Security?. Indeed, "strident" would be the least one could say about the numerous articles that Evangelical Outreach has refuting the Protestant doctrine of Eternal Security; the delicious irony here is that, by refuting that Protestant doctrine, Evangelical Outreach is defending a teaching of the Catholic Church against those who hold to "the Bible Alone". :-)

Only one Catholic pope... millions and millions of Protestant popes

The outcome of the Protestant standpoint, individual judgment: no authority outside of oneself. However ignorant, however stupid, however unlettered, you may—indeed you are bound—to cut and carve out a Bible and a religion for yourself. No pope, no council, no church shall enlighten you or dictate or hand down the doctrines of Christ. The result we have seen is the corruption of God's Holy Word.

Henry G. Graham
Where We Got the Bible
Chapter V

So, what does Evangelical Outreach mean when, in the midst of hysterics and histrionics, they urge that Catholics who "get saved" must flee "to a local Protestant congregation that declares the true gospel as found in the Bible"—which they also urge Protestants to do who belong to churches that embrace eternal security. EO means that such Catholics, and Protestants, must go to a congregation that believes just as Evangelical Outreach does. And that is all it means.

For the practical result of the fundamental Protestant belief in the "Bible Alone" is that, instead of having merely one infallible pope, like those silly Catholics who don't know any better, Protestants have four hundred million "infallible" popes—each deciding for himself which church is closest to true biblical teaching.

But if the "Bible Alone" was God's plan for teaching men true doctrine, then the "Bible Alone" would teach all men the same doctrine. Since the "Bible Alone" obviously does not teach everybody—not even every Protestant—the same doctrine, it must be equally obvious that the "Bible Alone" cannot be God's plan for teaching us true doctrine.

Ven. John Henry Newman
(AD 1801-1890)

To be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant.

Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine
(Part I, Introduction, Paragraph 5)

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