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Sainthood

I am writing this series of articles in response to the large article and picture of the Pope "beatifying" six people who are now well on their way to "sainthood." The article states that beatification is the last formal step before possible canonization and evidence of a second miracle after death is required for "sainthood." The last statement in the article tells us the Pope, "has given the church far more saints and beatified faithful than any other pontiff." Actually, he has given the Roman Catholic Church more than all other Popes combined. According to an official RCC site, the first recorded canonization took place in 966AD, which proves there is no such thing Biblically as the beatification of the dead, or anyone including the Pope elevating anyone to "sainthood" until close to a thousand years after Christ died. In the first place, it is unscriptural, but added to that is our amazement that for some reason, this news merits worldwide AP publication from the Vatican. When the Pope came to Mexico, 12 million people showed up to greet him. He ended his visit in Mexico with the canonization of Juan Diego of Guadeloupe saying, "He facilitated the fruitful meeting of two worlds." A news statement credited to Zenit.org states, "John Paul II canonized Juan Diego, the Indian witness of apparitions of Our Lady of Guadeloupe, whose image helped convert (to Catholicism of course) Mexico." A copyright article in the Houston Chronicle by Richard Vara and Dudley Althaus states, "Rev. Stafford Poole, a priest of the Vincentian order and a research historian based in Los Angeles, said the people's faith is misplaced and this week's canonization is a blunder. He (Juan Diego) did not exist, said Poole, author of Our Lady of Guadalupe: The Origins and Sources of a Mexican National Symbol. The whole (canonization) process has been basically dishonest."

The whole process has more to do with the living than the dead. It is another of the unscriptural Roman Catholic doctrinal errors used to promote Roman Catholicism. CNN reported that Mother Teresa had an evil spirit exorcised from her on her death bed. It is not thought that it will affect her "sainthood."

To be continued with ample Bible verses showing what the Bible says about "sainthood."



PART 2


FRONT PAGE NEWS AGAIN! Monday, May 5, 2003, Daily News: "Pontiff declares five new saints." Among other things in the article, we see that the Pope plans a stopover in Russia that is opposed by the Russian Orthodox Church, "accusing the Roman Catholic Church of seeking converts in tradtionally Orthodox lands." Another piece of news included is that "church attendance has declined" in Spain. I repeat what I stated in Part 1. The Roman Catholic Church, represented by the Pope, is using "sainthood" and vast media coverage to promote Roman Catholicism. Incidentally, an Atlanta Journal article about the same visit states, "The pontiff is seeking to reinvigorate Spanish Roman Catholics who have strayed from their once-dominate church." I expect the Pope to continue this as long as he lives and is able, and I expect the news media to continue to promote Roman Catholicism. Part of a Reuters article posted on AOL news concerning the same trip states, "The church hierarchy is concerned that Spain, traditionally one of the most Catholic countries, has grown increasingly secular." It went on to state that 85% of Spaniards consider themselves Catholic, but only 25% of them regularly attend Sunday mass. I have good reason to question the motive of the Pope in these canonization's.

I am not anti-Catholic, however, I do take exception to Catholic doctrine that is not founded upon the Word of God and especially when it is vastly promoted in worldwide media without question. There is not a Christian denomination in the world that could even buy that coverage.

I believe Saints who have died in Christ are more alive than they ever were, but they have not power at all to work miracles on earth. The teaching that those who have died can graduate to higher degrees after death is not founded upon Bible truth. To use Moses and Elijah in the transfiguration to justify the doctrine is quite a stretch of Scripture. The truth is, all true saints of God shall stand at the judgment seat of Christ and receive or lose reward according to the life they lived while on the earth. (2 Cor. 5:10)

To be continued with ample Scripture to prove that Biblical sainthood is a result of being "Born Again," and rewards for a "saintly" life will be given by Christ alone at the "judgment seat of Christ."



PART 3


My thanks to the Daily News for placing my article part 2 facing yet another article, "Poles to join pope for 83rd birthday, saint-making" on Saturday, May 18, 2003. The article states that he is celebrating his 83rd, "in his favorite way," referring to saint-making.

Now, Biblically speaking, what does it take to become a saint? Oddly enough, it only appears ONCE in the singular in the New Testament, and is the Greek word hagios, meaning sacred, pure, blameless, holy (same word is translated holy), consecrated. The word in the plural appears 60 times in the New Testament. In these verses, it is obvious that sainthood has been achieved on the earth in these people. The Greek word hagiazo which is from hagios, is translated sanctify and means to make holy, to purify. Acts 26:18 states Paul's mission was "To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." In 1 Cor. 1:2 Paul is writing "Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours."

In chapter 6:11, Paul speaks of a past washing which resulted in sainthood. "And such were some of you: But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus." Hebrews 10:10 states, "By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all."

Ephesians 5:25-27 states, "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it; That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word, That he might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." Hebrews 13:12 states, "Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate." Finally, look at 2 Thess. 2:13 to see how God accomphishes saint-making. "But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth." God chooses to make saints of anyone who will choose to believe the truth of the gospel. He will not choose who believes, but He will "sanctify" those who come to Christ for salvation! Are you a true, Born Again SAINT?

If you are not a SAINT before you die, you will not be one after you die!

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