Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


The Bible opposes the Catholic Mass as a counterfeit sacrifice for sin to God

The Catholic Church says that the sacrifice of the Mass can take away sins though it is an unbloody sacrifice.
 
Protestants point to Hebrews 9:22 for it says that a sacrifice without blood cannot forgive sins.
 
Catholics reply that the Mass is unbloody in the sense that no blood is spilled by the priest for he does not kill the victim. But God sees the blood of Christ being shed long ago as if it were shed now so there is bloodshed in the Mass in an invisible way and that blood can atone. The Sacrifice on the Mass and the bloody sacrifice of Calvary are identical so the blood is there though it is not seen. So it is a bloody sacrifice.
 
Another reply is that Christ did the bloodshed on Calvary and in the Mass the sacrifice becomes present but no blood is spilled again so in that sense the Mass is unbloody. The Catholics say the denial in scripture that unbloody sacrifice canít get sins forgiven refers to a different situation altogether and so is not relevant. Hebrews then was thinking of sacrifices of fruit and bread being useless for removing sin for no blood was shed. The author of Hebrews did not think that spilling blood was enough. He didnít believe that a sheep that was wounded by a priest to atone for sins but which was not killed would be a sacrifice. The Old Testament said that life was in the blood so blood really stands for dying. For the Mass to be a sacrifice the death of Christ has to be present. Taking bloody sacrifice to mean death sacrifice requires us to hold that the Mass is a bloody sacrifice.
 
Hebrews 10:11 says that the sacrifices of the old priesthood could not remove sins simply because they were repeated all the time. The sacrifices would have been stopped by God had there been enough of them (Hebrews 10:2). The Church says these sacrifices represented the sacrifice of Christ and through that sacrifice forgiveness was granted for making these sacrifices but in themselves the offerings could not pardon sin. So it was the future sacrifice of Christ that the power of forgiveness came from not the sacrifices. The sacrifice of Calvary was present at these rites and they were appropriating it. It follows then that these sacrifices were Masses if it is true that the sacrifice of Jesus being present for offering at Mass just means it is in the timeless estate. In that light the repetition should not be a problem. Hebrews says it is therefore Hebrews opposes the Masses of the Roman Catholics. If Masses looking forward had no merit because of repetition then ones looking back are no better.
 
Hebrews 10 says that Christ offered one sacrifice for sins and then SAT DOWN at the right hand of God. The sitting down is an expression to clarify that Christ was doing no more offering. Notice how it says that he offered one sacrifice and doesnít say he sacrificed the once instead. It is not the sacrifice that it is saying is finished but the offering of the sacrifice a different thing. Therefore Christ though a priest in office doesnít offer any more. The priests of Rome offering the sacrifice are claiming to be better than him. They are offering a sacrifice that is illegitimate because Christ doesnít offer it any more. The Mass is blasphemous.
 
Hebrews 13:10 says that Christians have an altar of sacrifice from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat. This is thought to be symbolism for the book uses the symbols of tabernacles and other Old Testament items to illustrate Christian themes.  Those who have no right to eat are the Levitical priests.  One way you could literally understand the verse is that the cross of Jesus is the altar of sacrifice and the Jewish priesthood cannot eat at that altar.  Unless you want to argue that the Eucharist is the dead body of Jesus in the form of bread, you can argue that the eating is metaphorical.  If Jesus could be eaten they are disqualified so it could be hypothetical.  There is no doubt that the Church at the time did not have a literal altar.  Communion was not even necessarily carried out on tables.  And the text implies that none of the Levitical priests accepted Jesus.
 
Hebrews 7 says that the former priests - eg the priests of Judaism were many in number because death prevented them from being permanent priests. Jesus is said to be the permanent priest for he does not die and lives forever. The Catholic Church ordains many priests so those priests are illicit rivals to Jesus and are not needed. And though the Church says they are priests forever, Hebrews says that a dying priest is no longer a priest. It reasons that death proves it. The Catholic objection, "Our priests are different from the Jewish priests" is therefore irrelevant. Catholic priests die too. A dying priesthood is an inadequate one.
 
The following argument needs examination, "Jewish priests were not participants in the priesthood of Jesus. Catholic priests are so they are not condemned in that scripture." But this participation really just means that God works through them for they are ordained by his authority. The Bible says that the Jewish priests are ordained properly by God. There is no hint that Catholic priests are ordained properly. But it would be wrong to argue that even if they were, they participate in Jesus' role as priest and the Jewish priest does not.
 
Hebrews 9:24-26 says that Jesus went to the heavenly temple of God not to offer himself often because then he would have to suffer many times since the creation of the world but he came at the end of the ages to do away with sin by sacrificing himself. Protestants say this refutes the Mass which is claimed by Catholics to be the same sacrifice as that of Calvary and Calvary offered again to God. Catholics say this just rejects the notion that Jesus had to die over again in time and not the idea that Jesus died once in time and that this death is present in all eternity so he can offer himself again and again in the Mass for eternity is like one moment of time frozen with no past and future so any event it contains can be said to be happening now for time is part of eternity. That interpretation is false.
 
Notice how it says Jesus does not go to the temple to offer himself to God often. If Jesus died once on the cross as a sacrifice that would not mean he only offered once. You can perpetuate one sacrificial act and offer it day by day.
 
The passage says that Jesus entered the temple once to offer himself and if he were like ordinary human priests he would need to offer himself more and even from the foundation of the world. But why from the foundation of the world? Why could he not start offering in 30 AD and offer since that time?

Some theologians would say, "The expression shows that the author of Hebrews was thinking not of Jesus offering himself in separate events but of Jesusí offering being present in eternity and in all time. He just crudely expressed it in terms of Jesus suffering over and over again. In a sense, when an event is in eternity it does happen over and over again but it is the same event. For example, if the death of Jesus is present now it is the one death but if it is present in the next moment too it is like it is happening over and over again. Suffer many times then does not mean suffer in time and over and over again as we know it but suffer in eternity by the one event of suffering being present to all eternity."

 Hebrews is rejecting that view for it was written to ordinary people who would not understand eternity and timelessness. The sacrifice of the cross was made once in time and is not present in eternity to be offered anew. Hebrews makes a heresy of the sacrifice of the Mass. The Catholics do not trust in Calvary but in the Sacrifice of the Mass instead. When God would not tolerate idols how could he tolerate a Mass that offers a sacrifice for sin that does not work?

If Jesus needs to offer himself more than once then why would he need to do so over and over again since the world - ie time began - and by implication for ever and ever?  It seems that one sacrifice is not enough for a sinful priest so he if has to do more than one then he is a sinner.  Jesus can be a sinner and still save us.

Hebrews 13:20 gives the only mention of the rising of Jesus from the dead.  It mentions it in passing.  It asks God to bless the people who brought up Jesus from the dead by the blood of the covenant.  Even now we have a very vague reference and it reads as if God fed Jesus' blood of the covenant to him to revive him.  The Mass cannot be understood without the idea of Jesus being raised from the dead to be the priest and feed us with his risen body and blood but Hebrews ignores that kind of thinking proving it is anti-Mass.

Hebrews 10:17-19 says that God said that one day he will remember sins no more and it argues from this that there will be no sacrifices for sin one day for there will be no need because a sacrifice has erased the need for any sacrifices. Then it says that Christians are living in that time for they have the right to enter the most holy place in Heaven. This obviously says that God imputes no sin to the true Christian for Jesus has died for them in their place as the sin offering that removes sins and that offering Mass is nonsense for its all settled. Yet Catholics add their sin offerings to the Christ sacrifice in the Mass. In animal sacrifice, you can give up a sheep you own as a sacrifice to God which shows that you are offering not only the animal but self-immolation as well for you are giving something up. It is impossible to see how animal sacrifice in this light could be incompatible with the sacrifice of Christ and therefore forbidden by it. And if it is forbidden the Mass must be forbidden too!
 
Hebrews 4:16 and Hebrews 10:17 taken together say that Christians can now march boldly to the throne of God which is in the holiest place in heaven WHENEVER THEY WISH. The Catholic would have to say this only happens at Mass for the Mass is supposedly the closest you get to God and the holiest place on earth. The whole point of the salvation won by Christ is that so you can go to him whenever you need to or wish instead of having to look for a human priest.
 
The animal sacrifices that Hebrews says are useless for taking sin away for the blood of sheep and goats cannot do that were thought to be one sacrifice in spirit by the priests for they ate the sacrifices for communion to signify unity and they were offered as one community to one God. The Psalm says that the real sacrifice in all this is not the blood but the sacrifice of a contrite heart (Psalm 51:16, 17) and Hebrews 10:6,7 agrees totally. This indicates that the sacrifices were indeed thought to be one sacrifice with many renewals. But Hebrews rejected them for they involved several rites in which the one united sacrifice was offered. The Mass is thought to be one sacrifice with many renewals and rites as well and so Hebrews rejects it. To Hebrews the perfect sacrifice needs no renewing or perpetuating or Masses or rites. It is once and for all in every sense.
 
It says at 10:14, 18 that God has perfected forever those who are made holy and that when all sins have been forgiven as they have been through the power of the sacrifice of Christ there is no further sacrifice for sin. Perfected forever. God sees them as perfect not just now but also in the future. God sees the future. God forgave future sins at Calvary. So when you become a Christian, your past and present and future sins are pardoned because of the work of Christ and though imperfect you are perfect forever in Godís sight for Jesus did it all for you. In such a scheme, there can be no room for Masses to offer sacrifice for sin.
 
To the claim that there is no further sacrifice for sin since Jesus made his sacrifice, the Catholic Church answers that they can be forgiven at Mass because it is the same sacrifice as Calvary so the Mass then is allowed. But the verses imply that you accept Jesus the once as your saviour and it is enough. It is not your sacrifice to offer and there is no need for Jesus to offer himself in the Mass. How do we know that? Because the Roman Catholic doctrine that you atone for sin a bit yourself by doing good works with Godís help is a sacrifice for sin. The Church will answer that Hebrews means blood sacrifice is no longer necessary. But we know that Hebrews recognises that blood is not the only sacrifice for sin and that good works and contrite hearts are as well. Hebrews means sacrifice of any kind for sin for it says what it says in the context of teaching that only one sacrifice removes sin and that is the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. Read the context.
 
You can only avail of the sacrifice of Christ by accepting what he has done for you and asking for pardon for your sins through it. To say that offering the Mass is the highest religious goal denies this and is blasphemy. To offer Mass instead of focusing on repenting sin is simply blasphemy for the offering isnít necessary but accepting its benefits is what is necessary. Hebrews says that sinners making sin offerings is no good which was why Jesus had to be perfect to be able to make the sin offering of himself for sinners (7:27,28). This is sufficient proof that the early Christian Church and the scriptures forbade the Mass for it needs priests to offer it while we are told there is only one offering and Jesus alone could make it.

The Mass being a fake sacrifice makes it like the sacrifice of Cain that insulted God. If you use a fake sacrifice to get rid of sin you will be left with the sin.  Sin is at its best and most powerful when you think its rooted out of you.