Thursday, April 19, 2007

Bible Christians

Shellie at Profound Gratitude comments on the vitriol of some anti-Catholics.
John MacArthur for example takes on the Mass so as to "save" us heathens.

Then the pageant really gets going. It takes a lot of training and you’ll understand why, okay?

This is what happens. The priest then makes the sign of the cross sixteen times in his pageant. I’m not going through it step-by-step, I’m going to sum it up. He has to make the sign of the cross sixteen times.

He has to turn toward the congregation six times, lift his eyes to heaven eleven times, kiss the altar eight times, fold his hands four times, strike his breasts ten times, bow his head 21 times, genuflect eight times, bow his shoulder seven times, bless the altar with the sign of the cross 30 times, lay his hands flat on the altar 29 times, pray secretly eleven times, pray aloud 13 times, take the bread and wine and turn it into the body and blood of Christ, cover and uncover the chalice ten times, go to and fro 20 times and in addition perform numerous other acts.

What in the world is he doing? All this extended pageant is designed, writes Betner [sic], to reenact the experience of Christ from the Last Supper in the Upper Room through the agony in the Garden, through the betrayal, through the trial, through the crucifixion, through His death, burial, resurrection and ascension.

That’s why all that motions going on, some kind of dramatization. His bowings and genuflections are imitations of Christ in His agony and suffering and if the priest forgets one element of the drama, he commits a sin, technically invalidates the Mass.So you’ve got to be trained to do this. And you’ve got to have a good memory. Who could count all those? What you do is you go through it, it’s like a routine until you get it down.
To which I would reply? Being you are well versed in the Bible, I have a question. Does the Bible lead us to salvation? If I were to immerse myself in the Bible, learning parts of it by heart, to ponder the Old and New Testament and listen to well versed preachers break open the Word of God; would that be a sign of a good Christian?

How about if I were to praise God as the angels do in the Bible, to pray as Jesus prayed? Would that qualify as good Christianity?

Then I would ask, do you realize that through the "pageantry" of the Mass, going only on Sundays, we would hear about 60% of the Bible over the course of 3 years? Daily communicants can hear over 80% over that same time. And do you know that most of the prayers we sing or recited come from the New Testament?

Have you heard of the Holy, Holy, Holy; it is found in Revelations. The "Lord, I am not worthy to receive you..." is direct from the Bible. The "Hosanna" also. Oh and the incense, where is that found repeatedly in the New Testament?

Here is a challenge. Read Revelations several times. Then go to a Mass and see how many prayers and rituals come straight out of Revelations.

As far as counting each action, some people must have too much time on their hands or their own faith must be shallow to nitpick such as this. Where in the Bible are we forbidden to "lift our eyes to heaven" when we pray? Or bow our heads, strike our breast, or to even "pray secretly". Going "to and fro"? Surely you protest too much.