"Paying" For The Dead
Pope Gregory the great conceived the unbiblical doctrine of purgatory in the 6th Century. The Council of Florence later ratified this in 1439AD.
Saint Gertrude once said:
"Even if Christ was to grant me a free entrance into heaven, I would not accept it, for all respond who look in Your eyes, I know that I am not yet a fit spouse for my Lord."
While this humility is to be welcomed, it does unfortunately once again demonstrate how Roman Catholics have totally misunderstood the Atonement, Justification and Sanctification. And it should be repeated that nobody is good enough, holy enough or righteous enough to enter heaven on their own merits - that's why Jesus is called our Saviour, and through ones faith in Him alone, this satisfies God's wrath and holiness.
"There is not one word spoken of it in all Holy Scripture, and also if the Pope with his pardons may for money deliver one soul hence, he may deliver him as well without money: if he may deliver one, he may deliver a thousand: if he may deliver a thousand, he may deliver them all; and so destroy purgatory: and then he is a cruel tyrant, without all charity, if he keep them there in prison and in pain, till men will give him money" (Simon Fish, A Supplication for the Beggars.)
No wiser words have ever been uttered by anybody on the subject of purgatory, than Simon Fish. Yet this form of income was very much welcomed by the financiers in Rome - like Jan Breu the Elder who once said:
"As the penny in the casket rings, the soul from Purgatory springs."
(Roman Catholic laity also echoed this around the world during these strange years by singing about it.)
This type of thinking within Rome causes millions of Catholics such immense grief (my own late grandmother would often say how she hoped her husband was now out of purgatory.) Here they are offered ways to escape the horrible and frightening place called purgatory, providing they had enough funds to give to the priest!
Of course for Catholics that do still believe in this non-biblical fable of purgatory, one of the main problems for them is how long will they have to burn there for?
(One former Catholic priest recalled an occasion when a lady parishioner asked him how long her late husband would be in Purgatory. The priest added he didn't know. The lady asked him if the Pope would know, for he had power over Heaven, Earth, and Hell when he wore his Triple Tiara. The priest thought about it, and realised for the first time in his life, the absolute folly of this man-made doctrine. If the Pope could release tormented souls, which the Church said he could do, why didn't he? He left the priesthood soon after this and went on to become a Born Again Christian.)
The vicar general of the Dominicans order has now, according to official Catholic teachings, been in purgatory for 500 years now!
I would say, therefore, what hope does the Catholic laity have then, for it somebody who is so senior is still burning in the heat of purgatory, and with John Paul II also pleading with his Polish crowd in 2002, for their prayers for him before he died, then it is no doubt that so many Catholics turn to alcohol for release from this horrendous and non-Scriptural pressure.
Catholics are still taught that if they read their Bibles 15 minutes a day, they will be given 300 days, per read, off in purgatory.
Such a terrible abuse of power was far worse than any sexual interference that was so rampant during and after the Reformation. However, the false doctrine of purgatory is not only foreign to Holy Scripture, but the Catholic encyclopaedia has had to acknowledge that the verses that Rome tries to use to prove this money making scheme is rather vague!
It needs to be stated that the Bible does not teach anywhere in its 1,189 chapters, 31,173 verses, and 774,746 words, that a baby that dies unbaptised will go to Hell.
It should also be pointed out to the reader that during the first 300 hundred years of Christendom, the ritual of infant baptism was NEVER practiced!
On the contrary, to the ardent Bible student, the book of Romans makes it quite clear: all children are born with a sinful and corrupt nature (Rom. 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3), however, sin is not charged to any child until one is old enough to recognise that such sinfulness is a transgression of God's perfect law.
Therefore the text that I believe affirms this would be Rom. 4:15.
So the reader will ask where then does this doctrine that is so foreign to Scripture comes from, concerning children going to Hell? The guilty party in question is a book called Aeneid (Book 6,77 pgs. 576-578.) In this Jewish book (which is not canonical of the Old Testament, therefore has no creditability) the fable goes something like this: all unbaptised babies go straight to Hell, and to oversee this, an angel called Metatron is sent to supervise this (if one wishes to know more about this Jewish fable, which the apostle Paul warned against [1 Tim. 1:4], then please refer to Edersheims Life and Times, Vol. II, pg. 750.)
Catholics are not the only Church that is unbiblically baptising children; reformed Protestants also copy the Roman Church (2 Tim. 3:7.)
In conclusion then to this strange doctrine, when the famous Jewish teacher, Gamaliel was dying - who had taught the apostle Paul Judaism, please see Acts 5:34 - he was so distraught about where Yahweh would send him, that he too believed in this mystical place called purgatory or limbo. He considered himself not bad enough for hell, or good enough for heaven, so perhaps a third place may be his abode.
It is incredible that not only would such a distinguished rabbi and scholar as Gamaliel reject his Jewish Messiah (Rom. 11:25), but would also buy into this fable that Aeneid mainly consists of!
So this, I believe, is where the Catholics got their anti-Biblical and horrendous doctrine from.
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