The Council of Trent, (AD 1545-63) placed “Sacred Tradition” equal to God’s Holy Word. Does this not cause you to wonder why it took 1,500 years for this to become dogma? What did the catholic believe prior to that? They believed that God’s Holy Word was final authority. All these years, the poor catholic has believed that the catholic church has had this “dogma” ever since Christ arose into Heaven. However, far is it from the truth. The catholic church states:
- Hence there exist a close connection and communication between sacred tradition and sacred Scripture. For both of them, flowing from the same divine wellspring, in a certain way merge into a unity and tend toward the same end. For sacred Scripture is the word of God inasmuch as it is consigned to writing under the inspiration of the divine Spirit. To the successors of the apostles, sacred tradition hands on in its full purity God’s word, which was entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. . . . Consequently, it is not from sacred Scripture alone that the Church draws her certainty about everything which has been revealed. Therefore both sacred tradition and sacred Scripture are to be accepted and venerated with the same sense of devotion and reverence. Sacred tradition and sacred Scripture form one sacred deposit of the word of God, which is committed to the Church. . . She [the Church] has always regarded the Scriptures together with sacred tradition as the supreme rule of faith, and will ever do so. Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation” (Dei Verbum), Documents of Vatican II, par.9, 10, 21, p. 117, 125
But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. ~ Matthew 15:9
Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. ~Mark 7:7
The catholic church admits that it was founded around the year 300. The average catholic doesn’t even know what year it came about. The website catholic.com says the catholic church was established around the year 107 and americancatholictruthsociety.com says around 397. However, historical fact says that for the first four centuries, the catholic church did not exist. The early church age believers did not believe in a purgatory or indulgences, neither did they have a of a pope. They had never heard of transubstantiation or mariology! These dogmas were attached to the true Gospel hundreds of years later by the roman catholic church.
The early church’s Gospel was left to the Apostles by our Lord and was considered complete. The Rock, Jesus, and the foundation of His Gospel were the Gospel His followers preached (see Matthew 24:14, 26:13, and Mark 14:9). The catholic dogmas made by men centuries later were not even a part of the original Gospel of Jesus Christ. The early believers werre confident that when they died they went to be with Christ. So much so, Paul mentioned it twice:
Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
~2 Corinthians 5:6
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. ~2 Corinthians 5:8
I doubt very much that if there had been purgatory, Paul would be so willing to be absent from the body if he knew he were going to a place of burning and judgment.
If you are a catholic reading this today, ask yourself why the Scriptures vary from the catholic church’s traditions. If they are suppose to agree together, how come there are so many contradictions between the Bible and the traditions of your church? When there are disagreements between the two, which one is to be obeyed? God or man? Does this not bother you? It should bother you! God wants it to bother you so that you will research it for yourself instead of allowing man and the catholic church to rule your heart. Rather, let God rule your heart and you will never go wrong!