The Vatican II document Nostre Aetate states neither what recent Popes nor today’s Jews often claim it does.

Abraham and Isaac Laurent de La Hire, 1650

by Doug Lawrence

Reading this, try to keep in mind that the Tribe of Judah (a.k.a. “The Jews”) comes from the stock of Abraham – the Father of Our Faith – and not the other way around!

The segment of the Vatican II document Nostre Aetate specifically dealing with the relationship of the Catholic Church to the Jews: 

4. As the sacred synod searches into the mystery of the Church, it remembers the bond that spiritually ties the people of the New Covenant to Abraham’s stock.

Thus the Church of Christ acknowledges that, according to God’s saving design, the beginnings of her faith and her election are found already among the Patriarchs, Moses and the prophets. She professes that all who believe in Christ-Abraham’s sons according to faith (6)-are included in the same Patriarch’s call, and likewise that the salvation of the Church is mysteriously foreshadowed by the chosen people’s exodus from the land of bondage. The Church, therefore, cannot forget that she received the revelation of the Old Testament through the people with whom God in His inexpressible mercy concluded the Ancient Covenant. Nor can she forget that she draws sustenance from the root of that well-cultivated olive tree onto which have been grafted the wild shoots, the Gentiles.(7) Indeed, the Church believes that by His cross Christ, Our Peace, reconciled Jews and Gentiles. making both one in Himself.(8)

The Church keeps ever in mind the words of the Apostle about his kinsmen: “theirs is the sonship and the glory and the covenants and the law and the worship and the promises; theirs are the fathers and from them is the Christ according to the flesh” (Rom. 9:4-5)*, the Son of the Virgin Mary. She also recalls that the Apostles, the Church’s main-stay and pillars, as well as most of the early disciples who proclaimed Christ’s Gospel to the world, sprang from the Jewish people. *(This passage was badly misinterpreted in the original 1994 edition of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and was, after some controversy, later corrected by the U.S. Catholic bishops, in a secret ballot.)

As Holy Scripture testifies, Jerusalem did not recognize the time of her visitation,(9) nor did the Jews in large number, accept the Gospel; indeed not a few opposed its spreading.(10) Nevertheless, God holds the Jews most dear for the sake of their Fathers; He does not repent of the gifts He makes or of the calls He issues-such is the witness of the Apostle.(11) In company with the Prophets and the same Apostle, the Church awaits that day, known to God alone, on which all peoples will address the Lord in a single voice and “serve him shoulder to shoulder” (Soph. 3:9).(12)

Since the spiritual patrimony common to Christians and Jews is thus so great, this sacred synod wants to foster and recommend that mutual understanding and respect which is the fruit, above all, of biblical and theological studies as well as of fraternal dialogues.

True, the Jewish authorities and those who followed their lead pressed for the death of Christ;(13) still, what happened in His passion cannot be charged against all the Jews, without distinction, then alive, nor against the Jews of today. Although the Church is the new people of God, the Jews should not be presented as rejected or accursed by God, as if this followed from the Holy Scriptures. All should see to it, then, that in catechetical work or in the preaching of the word of God they do not teach anything that does not conform to the truth of the Gospel and the spirit of Christ.

Furthermore, in her rejection of every persecution against any man, the Church, mindful of the patrimony she shares with the Jews and moved not by political reasons but by the Gospel’s spiritual love, decries hatred, persecutions, displays of anti-Semitism, directed against Jews at any time and by anyone.

Besides, as the Church has always held and holds now, Christ underwent His passion and death freely, because of the sins of men and out of infinite love, in order that all may reach salvation. It is, therefore, the burden of the Church’s preaching to proclaim the cross of Christ as the sign of God’s all-embracing love and as the fountain from which every grace flows.

5. We cannot truly call on God, the Father of all, if we refuse to treat in a brotherly way any man, created as he is in the image of God. Man’s relation to God the Father and his relation to men his brothers are so linked together that Scripture says: “He who does not love does not know God” (1 John 4:8).

No foundation therefore remains for any theory or practice that leads to discrimination between man and man or people and people, so far as their human dignity and the rights flowing from it are concerned.

The Church reproves, as foreign to the mind of Christ, any discrimination against men or harassment of them because of their race, color, condition of life, or religion. On the contrary, following in the footsteps of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, this sacred synod ardently implores the Christian faithful to “maintain good fellowship among the nations” (1 Peter 2:12), and, if possible, to live for their part in peace with all men,(14) so that they may truly be sons of the Father who is in heaven.(15)

Read the entire document

A Few Scriptural highlights:

The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren… (Matthew 1:1-2)

I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living… (Matthew 22:32)

As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever… (Luke 1:55)

Blessed [be] the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; To perform the mercy [promised] to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant; The oath which he sware to our father Abraham… (Luke 1:68-73)

Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself? Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying. Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw [it], and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am… (John 8:53-58)

The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let [him] go… (Acts 3:13)

Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed… (Acts 3:25)

And he gave him the covenant of circumcision: and so [Abraham] begat Isaac, and circumcised him the eighth day; and Isaac [begat] Jacob; and Jacob [begat] the twelve patriarchs… (Acts 7:8)

Men [and] brethren, children of the stock of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth God, to you is the word of this salvation sent… (Acts 13:26)

What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath [whereof] to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness… (Romans 4:1-5)

For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, [was] not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. For if they which are of the law [be] heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect: Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, [there is] no transgression. Therefore [it is] of faith, that [it might be] by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all… (Romans 4:13-16)

I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, [of] the tribe of Benjamin. God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to [the image of] Baal. Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace… (Romans 11:1-5)

Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, [saying], In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, [it is] evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though [it be] but a man’s covenant, yet [if it be] confirmed, no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto. Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. And this I say, [that] the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. For if the inheritance [be] of the law, [it is] no more of promise: but God gave [it] to Abraham by promise. Wherefore then [serveth] the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; [and it was] ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not [a mediator] of one, but God is one. [Is] the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster [to bring us] unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye [be] Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise… (Galatians 3:6-29)

Editor’s note: Despite all the flowery prose, along with certain modernist errors and omissions contained in the Nostre Aetate document, there exists a world of difference (as well as the practical hope of eternal salvation) between a Jewish person who is merely a naturally born child of God, still steeped in Original Sin, not yet redeemed from eternal slavery to Satan, sin and death – and a faithful, baptized Catholic Christian who is a living Temple of the Holy Spirit, a member of the Church, an adopted child of God, a Citizen of Heaven and co-heir with Jesus Christ to all the gratuitous promises of God.

The purpose of genuine Evangelization is to reach out in love to all the unbaptized, without exception, and to freely offer them God’s wonderful gift of salvation and grace, according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Not to falsely patronize and mislead them!

The rational logic of Nostre Aetate must also work both ways: Just as  what happened at Christ’s passion cannot be charged against all the Jews, without distinction, then alive, nor (exclusively) against the Jews of today – neither can the horrors of the Holocaust be charged against all non-Jews, without  distinction, then alive, nor against non-Jews (especially Catholics) of today.

The simple fact remains that there is no basis for unjust discrimination against the Jewish people, or against any individual Jewish person. Our Christian faith calls us to love God and to love our neighbor, with very few exceptions.

There is however, a tremendous distinction between the beliefs and practices of various forms of modern Judaism, loosely defined as Jewish Naturalism, and the authentic beliefs and practices of the one, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church of Jesus Christ – differences so great as to be irreconcilable by anyone other than God, himself. 

Due largely in part to their continued denial and rejection of Jesus Christ as God, Messiah and Savior and their emphasis instead, on justification under the Law (attempting to keep the Ten Commandments and all the other ordinances and statutes of the old, Mosaic Law) today’s Jews have much in common with the Muslims, as Muslim Sharia Law is essentially nothing more than a regional/national variation of the old, Mosaic Law – which never has been capable of saving a soul. For if that were the case, there would have been no need for Jesus Christ, our Holy Redeemer, to take on flesh, live, suffer, die and rise again, as our propitiation for sin, according to the will of God the Father.

Contrary to the novelties of the last fifty years, these very substantial differences in beliefs are  not something we Catholics would want to gloss over, condone, or celebrate – although friends may be able to agree to disagree on such matters.

Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, [even] by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4:10-12)

Mysterious Biblical Connections: Jacob’s Ladder, Jesus, and the Mount of Olives.


Jacob’s Ladder

Even a casual reader of the Gospels will quickly come to understand that Jesus was quite fond of the Mount of Olives, located to the east of Jerusalem, and extending for some distance to the north and to the south.

The town of Bethany, where Jesus was known to spend time relaxing with Lazarus, Martha, and Mary is located on the eastern slope of the mount, with the Garden of Gethsemane to the west.

Jesus was also known to frequent the Mount of Olives as a place of prayer, and even, to occasionally spend the night there.

Jesus ascended to Heaven from the Mount of Olives, and the Book of Zechariah informs us that Jesus will return there, too: At the end of time, Jesus will first set foot on the Mount of Olives, and then triumphantly proceed into Jerusalem, through the long-sealed, eastern (golden) gate.

We know also that Jesus, the night before he suffered and died, experienced agony on the Mount of Olives. He was comforted there, by angels. Then he was betrayed by Judas, and finally taken captive by the Temple guards.

The Mount of Olives seems to be a very unusual place. Abraham’s grandson, Jacob, whose name was later changed to Israel, spent a very interesting night there, too:

Genesis 28:11-17  And when he was come to a certain place, and would rest in it after sunset, he took of the stones that lay there, and putting under his head, slept in the same place. And he saw in his sleep a ladder standing upon the earth, and the top thereof touching heaven: the angels also of God ascending and descending by it.

And the Lord leaning upon the ladder saying to him: I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: The land, wherein thou sleepest, I will give to thee and to thy seed. And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth: thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and IN THEE and thy seed, all the tribes of the earth SHALL BE BLESSED. And I will be thy keeper whithersoever thou goest, and will bring thee back into this land: neither will I leave thee, till I shall have accomplished all that I have said.

And when Jacob awaked out of sleep, he said: Indeed the Lord is in this place, and I knew it not. And trembling, he said: How terrible is this place? this is no other but the house of God, and the gate of heaven.

In light of all this, it’s no wonder that Jesus also showed a distinct affinity for the Mount of Olives!

On the mount of sacrifice, God himself will provide.


Genesis 22:2-18 He said to him: Take thy only begotten son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and go into the land of vision; and there thou shalt offer him for an holocaust upon one of the mountains which I will show thee. So Abraham rising up in the night, saddled his ass, and took with him two young men, and Isaac his son: and when he had cut wood for the holocaust, he went his way to the place which God had commanded him.

And on the third day, lifting up his eyes, he saw the place afar off. And he said to his young men: Stay you here with the ass; I and the boy will go with speed as far as yonder, and after we have worshiped, will return to you. And he took the wood for the holocaust, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he himself carried in his hands fire and a sword. And as they two went on together, Isaac said to his father: My father. And he answered: What wilt thou, son? Behold, saith he, fire and wood: where is the victim for the holocaust?

And Abraham said: God will provide himself a victim for an holocaust, my son. So they went on together.

And they came to the place which God had shewn him, where he built an altar, and laid the wood in order upon it; and when he had bound Isaac his son, he laid him on the altar upon the pile of wood. And he put forth his hand, and took the sword, to sacrifice his son. And behold, an angel of the Lord from heaven called to him, saying: Abraham, Abraham. And he answered: Here I am. And he said to him: Lay not thy hand upon the boy, neither do thou any thing to him: now I know that thou fearest God, and hast not spared thy only begotten son for my sake.

Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw behind his back a ram, amongst the briers, sticking fast by the horns, which he took and offered for a holocaust instead of his son.

And he called the name of that place, The Lord seeth. Whereupon, even to this day, it is said: In the mountain the Lord will see. And the angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time from heaven, saying: By my own self have I sworn, saith the Lord: because thou hast done this thing, and hast not spared thy only begotten son for my sake: I will bless thee, and I will multiply thy seed as the stars of heaven, and as the sand that is by the sea shore; thy seed shall possess the gates of their enemies. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because thou hast obeyed my voice.


Editor’s note: The Book of Genesis, written by Moses, about 1500 B.C. contains many, many prophetic words and types, but few passages are as theologically “rich” as Genesis 22, the events of which date back to around 2000 B.C.

Just a few of the key parallels between Abraham’s sacrifice and the crucifixion of Jesus Christ:

  • A three-day process.
  • A beast of burden prominently figures here … and in the Christmas narrative … and on Palm Sunday.
  • Abraham’s Mount Moriah is the actual location of Mount Calvary (Golgotha) as well as the entire Jerusalem Temple complex.
  • Isaac, the designated sacrificial victim, carries the wood for the sacrifice.
  • Isaac is called Abraham’s “only begotten son”.
  • The designated victim is “flanked” by two others.
  • Isaac asks a few questions, but he never complains.
  • God provides the sacrificial victim – a perfect ram.
  • The ram’s head was caught in a thicket of thorns.
  • After three days, Abraham’s son was safely returned to him.
  • Both were obedient to God’s will, even unto death.
  • God’s providence saved Isaac, and indirectly, Isaac’s future son … Jacob/Israel … the “source” of the 12 tribes.
  • From Israel would eventually come Jesus Christ, in whom all the nations of the earth would indeed be blessed.
  • The Church that Jesus founded would go on to “possess the gates of their enemies” … and most importantly … the gates of hell would never prevail against it.

Seen on the web: Islam, the Koran, and You.

The Catholic Church teaches this about Islam, in its official Catechism:

841 The Church’s relationship with the Muslims. “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”330

A reader at Jihad Watch recently posted the following about the teachings of the Koran.

Islamic Allah is the greatest deceiver of all (3:54) and leads people astray (14:27).

The Koran was made by Allah (10:37) and always been in heaven with Allah (85:21-:22).

The Koran is flawless (39:28) and only in Arabic (39:28, 43:3).

The current Koran has 114 Chapters, yet other original Korans had 111 Chapters (Abdullah bin Masud), while yet others had 116 Chapters (Ubayy bin Ka’b).

What to do?

The world’s most powerful Muslim who reigned as caliph from 644-658 called Uthmam ordered other original Korans burned.

The current Koran, Chapter 33 has 77 verses, but originally had hundreds more.

One of the verses omitted was stoning to death for rape and adultery (Rajam), just like Mohammed ordered done to a mother who finished weaning her infant.

Mohammed is the ideal example of conduct for for Muslim and a prophet (33:21, 68:4), yet illiterate=unlettered (7:157).

Mohammed (51) married child bride Aisha (6) and raped her when she was 9 and he was 54 (Bukhari 7.62.88)

Mohammed says the devil stays in the upper-part of the nose all night (Sahih Bukhari Volume 6, Book 666, Verse 3295).

Muslims are the best of humanity (Koran 3:110).
Muslims are forbidden from doubting ANY part of the Koran (2:1).

Muslims are forbidden from asking questions about the Koran (Koran 5:101).

Muslims are REQUIRED to fight and kill us, even if they don’t want to (2:216, 2:244, 4:89, 4:91).

Muslims MUST crucify, amputate, and slaughter non-Muslims (5:33).

Muslims CANNOT have non-Muslims as friends (5:51).

Muslims are allowed to lie to non-Muslims to spread Islam (3:28, 16:106).

Jews, Christians, and others are apes and pigs (2:65, 5:60, 7:163-166).

Should we tolerate child rape (65:4) and sex slaves (4:24) in Islam by Muslims?

Should we allow Muslims to kill us because it’s the ONLY guaranteed way for Muslims to get to heaven (9:111)?

Should we let Muslims behead us (smite our necks – Koran 8:12, 47:4)?

Should we be killed for refusing to convert to Islam (9:29)?

Should Muslims be killed for leaving Islam (Bukhari 9.84.57)?

Should Infidel women be stoned to death (Rajam) for the crime of adultery and getting raped (Sahih Bukhari 8.82.816)?

Your comments are welcome.

Five things about Jesus Christ that are well worth knowing


1. Prefigured – The text says, John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. Now, unless you know the history of this moment, it seems a little odd. A full grown man approaches John the Baptist and he says, Look! There is the Lamb of God.

But for those who know the scriptures John is really answering a question that was asked by Isaac some 1800 years prior to this event. Abraham has received from God a strange and terrible command that he take his son to Mt. Moriah (present day Jerusalem) and there offer him in sacrifice. As they arrive at the foot of Moriah, here is where we join the Genesis text:

And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here am I, my son.” He said, “Behold, the fire and the wood; but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham said, “God will provide himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together. (Gen 22:6ff).

Do you get it? A promised son has wood laid upon his shoulder and is made to carry it up a hillside, the same hillside where “Golgotha” will one day be found. There, on the top of that hill he is to be laid on the wood and killed. Sound familiar? Of course, it is a prefigurement of Christ, or a “type” of Christ.  Things are starting to look grim for Isaac who gets nervous and says, “Daddy – where is the Lamb?” You know the rest of the story. It is true that there was a ram caught in the thicket which God provided that day, but that ram pointed to Christ.

And so the question, “Where is the Lamb?”  wafted up on the breeze  and got repeated down through the generations. Some five hundred years later at the end of the Egyptian slavery the blood of the lamb also protected Isaac’s descendants from death. And every Passover the question was still asked, where is the Lamb, referring to the Passover lamb. Here too, the Passover lamb was but a symbol, a prefigurement of Christ.

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Why the Sadducees didn’t believe in the Resurrection … and how Jesus set them straight!

The Resurrection: Sistine Chapel

Fundamentally, they rejected the resurrection due to the fact that they accepted only the first five books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. Now this is somewhat debated among scholars but for our purposes we can surely say that if something was not explicitly in the Law of Moses, they were unlikely to accept it. All the other Old Testament books such as the prophets, the historical books, the psalms, and the wisdom tradition were set aside by them as authoritative sources. They further claimed that, in these first five books, the resurrection of the dead was not taught. Most other Jews of Jesus’ time did accept the complete Old Testament, and teachings such as the resurrection of the dead which are set forth there, but the Sadducees simply did not. They were a small party within Judaism (Josephus said they were able to persuade none but the rich). Nevertheless they were influential due especially to their wealth and to the fact that they predominated among the Temple leadership. You can read more of them here: Sadducees

Hence the Sadducees arrive to poke fun at Jesus and all others who held that the dead would rise. They are no match for Jesus who easily dispatches their arguments. And Jesus uses the Book of Exodus, a book they accept to do it. In effect Jesus argument proceeds as such:

You accept Moses, do you not?
(To which they would surely reply yes)

But Moses teaches that the dead will rise.
(Jesus must have gotten puzzled looks but he presses on).

You accept that God is a God of the living and not the dead?
(To which they would surely reply yes).

Then why does God in Exodus identify himself as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, all of whom have been dead (for hundreds of) years? How can he call himself their God if they are dead?
Obviously they are alive, for he could not call himself their God, for he is not a God of the dead but of the living.

So they are alive to God. They are not dead.

Hence Jesus dispatches their view. For us the point is to see how forcefully and clearly Jesus upholds the fact that the dead are alive in the Lord. He powerfully asserts an essential doctrine of the Church and we should rejoice at how firmly Jesus rebukes their disbelief in the resurrection of the dead. Rejoice! For your loved ones are alive before God . To this world they may seem dead, but Jesus tells us firmly and clearly today, they live. Likewise we too, who will face physical death will also live on. Let the world ridicule this, but hear what Jesus says and how he easily dispatches them. Though ridiculed, the resurrection is real.

Editor’s note: There are many living today who do not believe in the resurrection of the body, let alone that Jesus Christ rose again from the dead. The Catholic Church, along with 2000 years of systematic Catholic scholarship and superb theology, and the most successful philosophy of life that the world has ever known, remains the living the eye-witness to the truth of the Gospels, until Jesus comes again.

Those who, for whatever reason, fail to participate fully in all of the work, worship, sacraments and devotions of the Catholic Church have a lot in common with the Sadducees. And that’s just … sad!

DECLARATION ON THE RELATION OF THE CHURCH TO NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS


The Vatican document NOSTRA AETATE, proclaimed by Pope Paul VI, on October 28, 1965, makes a number of important points about Catholicism, Islam, and Judaism. And once a few inexcusably vague and misleading passages are suitably parsed and properly understood, it says nothing that any good Catholic would not (or should not) already know.

Unfortunately, most Catholics have never read NOSTRA AETATE, so it has often been misquoted and misused by some Catholics, as well as those of other faiths, to take unfair advantage, and to spread further confusion in the Catholic ranks.

I suggest you read the document for yourself. Note what is actually stated and what is not. Be very careful to make absolutely no assumptions about language therein which appears to reference certain events and/or covenants, but fails to specifically name them, describe, and/or explain their precise significance.

Also, pay particular attention to the following verses from St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans, which have often been taken out of context, in order to state something that St. Paul obviously never intended:

“theirs is the sonship and the glory and the covenants and the law and the worship and the promises; theirs are the fathers and from them is the Christ according to the flesh” (Rom. 9:4-5)

Read the complete text of the St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans.

The true meaning of the document:

Catholics are called to act with unbridled charity to all, no matter what their faith tradition. Unjust and unwarranted discrimination is always to be avoided, and the dignity of persons, along with respect for their religious freedom is always to be observed, without exception. Doing anything less constitutes a serious sin. Meanwhile, Catholics are bound to affirm and uphold all the authentic teachings of the Catholic faith. Compromising on ANY of these, constitutes a serious sin.

The false, liberal “take” on NOSTRA AETATE:

All religions are valid paths to God. Those of other faiths are no longer in need of evangelization, since they have their own covenant(s) and arrangements with God.  Catholics are obligated, out of guilt for past offenses, to “roll over” and “give in” any time a non-Catholic criticizes the teachings or the actions of the Church. To do otherwise is inconsiderate, hurtful, rude, and most significantly … politically incorrect … and being politically incorrect constitutes the “unforgivable sin” against liberals, progressives, and modernists, everywhere.

Read NOSTRA AETATE for yourself

In word, types, figures and events, the Old Testament prefigures the New.


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Is it true that the late Pope John Paul II once publicly kissed the Koran?


Q: Is it true that the late Pope John Paul II once publicly kissed the Koran (Muslim Holy Book)? What can we infer from this?

A: Yes he did, as the above photo shows. As for inferring the pope’s intentions or motives, this 1985 address to a group of Muslim Moroccan youth provides a good idea of the pope’s position on the Islamic faith:

“Christians and Muslims, we have many things in common, as believers and as human beings. We live in the same world, marked by many signs of hope, but also by multiple signs of anguish. For us, Abraham is a very model of faith in God, of submission to his will and of confidence in his goodness. We believe in the same God, the one God, the living God, the God who created the world and brings his creatures to their perfection.

It is therefore towards this God that my thought goes and that my heart rises: it is of God himself that, above all, I wish to speak with you; of him, because it is in him that we believe, you Muslims and we Catholics. I wish also to speak with you about human values, which have their basis in God, these values which concern the blossoming of our person, as also that of our families and our societies, as well as that of the international community. The mystery of God, is it not the highest reality from which depends the very meaning which man gives to his life? And is it not the first problem that presents itself to a young person, when he reflects upon the mystery of his own existence and on the values which he intends to choose in order to build his growing personality?”

Read the full text from the Vatican website

This approach makes a lot of sense, based on the official Catholic Church teaching regarding Islam (and other, non-Christian faiths.) From the Catechism:

The Church and non-Christians

839 “Those who have not yet received the Gospel are related to the People of God in various ways.”325

The relationship of the Church with the Jewish People. When she delves into her own mystery, the Church, the People of God in the New Covenant, discovers her link with the Jewish People,326 “the first to hear the Word of God.”327 The Jewish faith, unlike other non-Christian religions, is already a response to God’s revelation in the Old Covenant. To the Jews “belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ”,328 “for the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.”329

840 And when one considers the future, God’s People of the Old Covenant and the new People of God tend towards similar goals: expectation of the coming (or the return) of the Messiah. But one awaits the return of the Messiah who died and rose from the dead and is recognized as Lord and Son of God; the other awaits the coming of a Messiah, whose features remain hidden till the end of time; and the latter waiting is accompanied by the drama of not knowing or of misunderstanding Christ Jesus.

841 The Church’s relationship with the Muslims. “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”330

842 The Church’s bond with non-Christian religions is in the first place the common origin and end of the human race:

All nations form but one community. This is so because all stem from the one stock which God created to people the entire earth, and also because all share a common destiny, namely God. His providence, evident goodness, and saving designs extend to all against the day when the elect are gathered together in the holy city. . .331

843 The Catholic Church recognizes in other religions that search, among shadows and images, for the God who is unknown yet near since he gives life and breath and all things and wants all men to be saved. Thus, the Church considers all goodness and truth found in these religions as “a preparation for the Gospel and given by him who enlightens all men that they may at length have life.”332

844 In their religious behavior, however, men also display the limits and errors that disfigure the image of God in them:

Very often, deceived by the Evil One, men have become vain in their reasonings, and have exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and served the creature rather than the Creator. Or else, living and dying in this world without God, they are exposed to ultimate despair.333

845 To reunite all his children, scattered and led astray by sin, the Father willed to call the whole of humanity together into his Son’s Church. The Church is the place where humanity must rediscover its unity and salvation. The Church is “the world reconciled.” She is that bark which “in the full sail of the Lord’s cross, by the breath of the Holy Spirit, navigates safely in this world.” According to another image dear to the Church Fathers, she is prefigured by Noah’s ark, which alone saves from the flood.334

Homosexuals claim Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed due to … (gasp) bad hospitality!


To those who know better, it is uncanny the excuse that Sodom and Gomorrah was about “hospitality” has actually remained in the apologetic of the homosexual advocates for so long, being that it is one of the most ridiculous answers ever devised by intelligent men. I remember I first heard the “hospitality” excuse when I was in college in 1978. I took a minor in Psychology and in a class on Abnormal Psychology the professor, with tongue in cheek, stated that the more popular explanation psychologists were giving at that time concerning the story of Sodom and Gomorrah was that it had nothing to do with homosexuality; rather, it was about the sin of “inhospitality.” I remember distinctly, as soon as he uttered those words, the whole class went into hysterical laughter. And that, of course, is what we can do with “Reverend Cheri DiNovo’s” present advocacy of the “hospitality” argument.

Any biblical exegete worth his salt would tell DiNovo that in order for “hospitality” to be the central focus of the Genesis narrative, there would have to be some mention of “hospitality,” or some similar term, as that which was the object of God’s concern regarding the events occurring in Sodom and Gomorrah. As it stands, there is not one word about hospitality.

The only time hospitality is part of the narrative is when Abraham meets the three strangers who eventually condemn Sodom and Gomorrah. (Genesis 18:1f). To show kindness, Abraham and Sarah provide nourishment for the three strangers.

Second, Genesis 18:16-33 provides us with the actual conversation between God and Abraham concerning the fate of the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah. Verse 20 states: “The outcry of Sodom and Gomorrah is indeed great, and their sin is exceedingly grave.” Thus, the Lord has ALREADY seen the sin of Sodom, and it is exceedingly perverse. Hence, this couldn’t be the sin of “inhospitality” because the event concerning Lot and the men pounding on his door seeking to consort with the angels has not yet occurred. That event won’t occur until the next chapter, Genesis 19. So “Reverend Cheri’s” argument is completely anachronistic, not to mention completely bogus.

Evidently, the Lord had been observing the sin of Sodom for quite some time, and it is the very reason he has come to Abraham. So perverse and so complete is the sin of Sodom (long before Lot’s door is accosted) that Abraham finds himself bargaining with God not to destroy the city if he can find 10 righteous people. Evidently, Abraham can’t find even 10 righteous people, and thus God plans on destroying the whole city.

Granted, Genesis 18 doesn’t tell us what the sin of Sodom is, but that information is supplied in Genesis 19:5 when the men at Lot’s door say: “and they called to Lot and said to him, ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have relations with them.’” (NASB)

The clause “that we may have relations with them” is from the Hebrew word YADAH, which means “to know,” and is often used in idiomatic form to represent sexual relations (cf., Gn 4:25: “And Adam knew his wife and she bore a child”). We know that sexual relations is the meaning of YADAH in this context because it is used again in regard to sexual relations with Lot’s daughters, as Lot says in verse 8: “Now behold, I have two daughters who have not had relations [YADAH] with man” (NASB).

It is obvious to any unbiased exegete that the context of the narrative demands that sexual relations is the focus of the passage.

How else do we know that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah involved illicit sexual relations? We know it from the many commentaries in Scripture on this very event. In fact, “Sodom” is used as a figure of sexual sin and is referred to as the place of divine judgment over two dozen times in Scripture (cf., Dt 29:23; 32:32; Is 1:9-10; 3:9; 13:19; Jr 23:14; 49:18; 50:40; Lm 4:6; Ez 16:46-56; Am 4:11; Zp 2:9; Mt 10:15; 11:23; Rm 9:29).

But more importantly, there are two explicit passages in the New Testament that tell us precisely that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was sexual in nature. First there is 2 Peter 2:6-8:

“and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter; and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds)”

The words “sensual conduct” are the Greek ASELGEIA ANASTROPHES. The first ASELGEIA, appears 9 times in the New Testament and is usually translated as “lasciviousness” (Mt 7:22; Rm 13:13; 2Co 12:21; Gl 5:19; Ep 4:19; 1Pt 4:3; 2Pt 2:18; Jd 4), which refers to one having lustful, lewd or wanton thoughts or behavior.

We also note here that the men of Sodom were tormenting Lot “day after day.” Hence, this is not merely a one-time occasion of force exerted at Lot’s door, but a continual display of lascivious behavior long before the angels ever arrived.

Then there is Jude 7:

“just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.”

Here it is even more explicit as to the nature of the sin of Sodom. The clause indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh is from the Greek EKPORNUESASAI and APELTHOUSAI OPISO SARKOS HETERAS. The first is a combination of the Greek PORNEIA, which is derivation for our English word “pornography,” and the prefix “EK,” which means “out of.” The second phrase literally means “going after different flesh.” The operative word here is “different,” which is from the Greek HETERAS. In this context it refers to sexual relations that are “different” than normal sexual relations, i.e., homosexual relations.

Hence, DiNovo’s interpretation of the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of being accepted by reputable biblical exegetes.

There is one curious fact we also need to mention. The mere fact that DiNovo feels compelled to answer the Bible shows that she implicitly regards the Bible as a practical authority on the issue. If she didn’t esteem the Bible, then all she would need to do to answer the narrative is say: “The Bible is not an authority, and therefore we are not compelled to answer its assertions.” Instead, DiNovo implicitly subjects herself to the authority of Scripture, and thus, if she is wrong about her interpretation of Scripture (which we have clearly shown), then she will also suffer the condemnations Scripture specifies for those who practice or advocate homosexuality.

Read more from Robert Sungenis at Catholic Apologetics International

On the Feast of the John The Baptist: A Strange and Wonderful, Though Long Delayed Answer

Birth of St. John the Baptist

To understand the moment we must go back in time to approximately 1900 BC. The place is a hillside called Moriah where Jerusalem would later be built. Abraham has been commended there by God where he has been told to prepare to kill him in sacrifice. Upon arriving at the foot of Moriah the text says,

Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”  ”Yes, my son?” Abraham replied. ”The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb…? (Gen 22:6-8)

Do not miss the great foreshadowing here: A long promised son, about to die, carrying wood upon his shoulders ascending the very hillside where Jerusalem and Golgotha will one day be located. Yes this is a wondrous foreshadowing.

And then comes the great question to his Father: “But, Where is the Lamb?” Yes, indeed, where is the Lamb who will die so that I don’t have to? Where is the Lamb whose blood will save my life? Where is the Lamb?

Now you know the rest of that story. An angel stopped Abraham and then pointed to a ram, with it’s horns in the thicket. And you may be excused for saying, “Aha, God did provide the Lamb. End of story.” But truth be told, this ram, this lamb cannot really save Isaac. Because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins (Heb 10:4) Isaac’s death is merely postponed and then it is off to Sheol with him where he will lie and wait for the True Lamb who alone can give eternal life.

And so, that question got wafted up on to the breeze and echoed down through the Centuries that followed: “But, where is the Lamb…..where is the Lamb?”

And now we are standing by the banks of the Jordan River 19 Centuries later and John the Baptist sees a full grown man coming toward him and says a very strange thing: “Look! There is the Lamb of God!” (Jn 1:29) Yes, there is the  true Lamb who alone can take away our sins. John the Baptist supplies a strange and wonderful, though long delayed answer to a question Isaac asked 1,900 years before. Where is the Lamb?  THERE is the Lamb!

Happy birthday of John the Baptist.

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Muslims claim Allah is not the “Christian God”

“We want to live in peace with all religions here but the word Allah has traditionally in Malaysia been used to represent the Muslim God, which is different from Christianity, and this must be addressed,” he told AFP.

Read the article

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

841 The Church’s relationship with the Muslims. “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”

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Illustrated Christmas Bible Study: Christmas is A Catholic Tradition

2Thessalonians 2:13-14

But we ought to give thanks to God always for you, brethren, beloved of God, for that God hath chosen you firstfruits unto salvation, in sanctification of the spirit and faith of the truth: Whereunto also he hath called you by our gospel, unto the purchasing of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast: and hold the traditions, which you have learned, whether by word or by our epistle.

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My Jewish friends say that Christians have it wrong. Is that true?

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Q: My Jewish friends say that Christians have it wrong. Is that true?

A: No offense to anyone … but Christianity isn’t wrong.

The Jews were always expecting the arrival of a temporal ruler who would restore Israel to glory … glory that would exceed even that of the heady days of King Solomon. They built their most cherished religious traditions around that prophetic event, but things didn’t work out quite the way they expected.

That’s not surprising, considering the obscurity in which most biblical prophecy is couched, the limitations of man’s intellect, and the fact that God chose to provide some the most critical information only at the very “last minute” in a most unusual, unexpected way.

The Jews also failed to understand that such a thing would require a rather lengthy, multistage process:

1) The Messiah would come and give his life to redeem mankind from eternal slavery to Satan, sin, and death, inaugurating the Kingdom of God on earth, something which is indeed invisible, but which (none the less) exists any time and anywhere the Holy Spirit accepts an offer to indwell a human soul.

Supernatural peace and divinely inspired justice is part and parcel of “citizenship” in the Kingdom of God … something which is presently and typically achieved through the holy Sacrament of Christian Baptism, which (among other very good things) also makes one a member of the Church.

2) For an indefinite period of time, known only to God, the Christian (Catholic) Church, empowered by Jesus Christ and his grace, would be tasked with teaching and baptizing all who would accept the authentic Gospel message … the “good news” of salvation in God’s grace, and the fulfillment of the promises God made to Abraham, in the person of Jesus Christ.

3) Having died, risen again, and now seated at the “right hand of power” in Heaven, Jesus the Messiah will indeed one day return, bringing an end to the present system of things, judging the living and the dead, and installing a new, heavenly order, which will achieve all that was ever promised to Israel and more, right here on a newly renovated earth.

The reason the Jews do not understand all this is because God purposely never revealed all the details of his plan to the prophets and the patriarchs of old, since if he had it would likely have become virtually impossible for Jesus, the true Messiah, to successfully accomplish what he was first sent here to achieve.

It was Jesus who personally provided the additional divine revelation that serves as the key to all the Hebrew Scriptures. Reject Jesus Christ (and/or the teachings of his authentic Catholic Church) and you reject the truth, remaining forever in darkness.

The Jews, as a nation, cruelly rejected Jesus in the time of his visitation. None the less, God graciously gave them 40 years to recover from their mistake … during which time many Jews did indeed accept the truth of Christianity, as many continue to do today.

After that period, the Temple, Jerusalem, and the entire worship system that had been built around it, was totally and utterly destroyed.

Meanwhile, the Christian Church had become a truly universal, authentically salvific, world-wide faith … open to all … Jew and Gentile alike, constituting the “new” People of God.

With Jesus Christ at the head, it remains so to this day.

Is everyone who submits to God’s will a Muslim?

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Q:  If Muslims are called to be submissive to God’s will, does that mean that everyone who willingly submits to God’s will is actually a Muslim?

A: The key question should be: By what means can one actually discover and correctly discern the authentic will of God?

Muslims claim that God revealed himself to Mohamed. Hence, Muslims base their understanding of God’s will essentially on their particular interpretations of Mohamed’s Quran.

Jews claim that God revealed himself to them through Abraham, Moses, and other prophets, many of whom the Jews and Muslims revere in common, so the Jewish understanding of God’s will isn’t very far removed from that of the Muslims.

Muslim fundamental beliefs are codified in Sharia Law, which is very similar to what the Jews know as their own Mosaic Law (the Ten Commandments) along with several hundred related statutes and ordinances.

On the other hand, Christians take what was first basically revealed to the Jews and then build upon it, using the authentic teachings and personal revelations of Jesus Christ.

Jesus claimed to be the fulfillment of all the original scriptures … the Messiah … the promised savior of the world … making possible the reconciliation of mankind with God … just as God had originally promised … and Jesus died and rose again from the dead to prove that what he claimed was true.

While the Jews and Muslims know only the Old Testament God of wrath, Christians know a God of tender love and gracious forgiveness … resulting exclusively from the atoning work of Jesus Christ.

Anyone who adamantly remains mired in the past fails to get the complete message, and is likely to remain in fear and relative darkness, forever. That is hardly a position from which to properly discern the authentic will of God.

But thanks to Jesus Christ, who is (among other things) the light of the world, Christians know without a doubt that God loves us, that he wants us to know him, to love him, and to serve him, in this world and in the next, and that he (God) will provide everything necessary to make that possible … simply because he loves us … and that he’ll accomplish his will primarily through the good offices and sacraments of the only Church that Jesus Christ ever founded, for the purpose of our salvation.

So … since Muslims and Jews accept only the early, relatively obscure, and essentially incomplete portions of God’s divine revelation, they miss the most important and most fulfilling part of the message … redemption, peace, rest, and gracious pardon from God’s justifiable wrath.

Their world view remains skewed, and their discernment of God’s authentic will, fatally flawed.

Alternatively, faith in Jesus Christ, his teachings, and his Church, provides Christians with all the missing pieces of the puzzle, resulting in grace, rest, freedom from inordinate concerns about divine judgment and wrath, personal peace, and eternal life.

All of this should permit Christians (ideally, at least) to love God and to love their neighbor … which is indeed the express will of God, according to Jesus Christ … who ought to know, because he IS God … and he told us as much, as he went about preaching in first century Palestine … fulfilling all that had been written in the books of the Law, the Psalms, and the Prophets.

Even after official USCCB revision, controversy remains over Catholic Catechism, status of the Jews

catechismadults

“…the Catholic faith is rooted…in the irrevocable covenant made with Abraham…for it is the teaching of both the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures that the Jews are beloved of God, who has called them with an irrevocable calling.” This is the covenant that saves Jews and Gentiles, but neither the Jews nor the Gentiles can be a part of it unless they believe as Abraham believed, and today, that means accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, as Scripture says of Abraham and Moses (cf. John 8:56; Heb 11:26; Rom 4:1-4). This was the covenant that divided Jew from Jew, because only those Jews who had a genuine faith-relationship with God and confessed their sins could ever reap the benefits of that covenant (Romans 3:28-4:12). That is why Paul says in Romans 9:6: “For they are not all Israel who are from Israel.” When Christ came, the spiritual side of the Abrahamic covenant became the New Covenant, and Jews and Gentiles are presently being saved in that very covenant (cf. Romans 4:1-24; Gal 3:6-29; Hebrews 10:16-18; 2 Corinthians 3:6-18).

The difference between Abraham’s physical covenant of circumcision and the spiritual covenant of salvation is that all the Jews were part of the former, but only those who believed as God required them to believe were part of the latter.

In the same way, all Jews today who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are part of Abraham’s spiritual covenant, and, of course, those who disbelieve are not members of that covenant, but of the synagogue of Satan, as it were.

The crucial point is: the covenant that is “not revoked” does not apply to ALL Jews. It only applies to believing Jews, Jews who believe in Jesus Christ, the God of Abraham (Galatians 3:29: “And if you belong to Christ then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise”).

Practically speaking, most Jews (since they do not believe in Jesus Christ) are not members of Abraham’s spiritual covenant, and they have no other covenant that can bring them to God, for there is only one name under heaven by which men can be saved, namely, Jesus Christ.

So, it would behoove Fr. Massa to stop teaching that the Jews, en masse or at large, have “a” covenant with God, and that because of this unidentified covenant they possess some “real relationship with God” or that they possess some lofty spiritual status with God that Gentiles don’t have. There is no such covenant, for in the only covenant that exists today there is no Jew or Gentile in Jesus Christ (Galatians 3:28).

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What is an intercessor and in what way is Jesus the only intercessor to God?

melchisedech

Q: What is an intercessor and in what way is Jesus the only intercessor to God?

A: By virtue of our baptism, as adopted children of God and members of the royal priesthood of believers … all of which is possible only through the finished work of Jesus Christ, the one mediator between God and man … we Christians have the right to pray directly to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit … any time we please.

But for many and various reasons, most significantly, our own personal, grevious sins and our fallen human nature, we can often benefit from some “qualified assistance” in that regard.

The biblical concept of “Kinsman Redeemer” holds that all of us are related through Adam, and that any one of us who is able, has a God-given right and even the responsibility to “step in” or intercede, for any of our less fortunate relatives or “kin”.

Abraham (Abram) was indeed the first biblical “type” of this when he rescued his nephew Lot from the kings of Sodom, and received a blessing from Melchizedek, as a result.

Probably the most cited biblical example of this concept is Boaz, who acted as kinsman redeemer for Ruth, who serves as the originator of the Davidic blood line, which of course applies most essentially to Jesus Christ, who by virtue of his incarnation, became the Messiah, who is the ultimate “Kinsman Redeemer” of the entire human race.

There are potentially many others, since this principle would certainly apply to all, according to God’s very own timeless law of love.

And while Jesus remains the one mediator between God and man, anyone who is in God’s favor (particularly, faithful Church members) especially those who are already perfected in Heaven (Mary, the Saints, the Angels) has the right (and yes, even the duty) to intercede for anyone on earth (or in Purgatory) who might need or request it.

This would typically be accomplished by humbly approaching the throne of Jesus Christ with one’s request, which is certainly permitted, since Jesus remains not only the one mediator, but also (among many other wonderful things) our High Priest, our brother, our King, and our God.

Catholics on earth do this through the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass (making excellent use of the ministerial priesthood, and of Melchizedek’s “original” bread and wine) where Jesus graciously serves in all these ways (24/7 and 365, all around the world) … and through all the other work, worship, sacraments and devotions of the Church … whose continuing mission is the salvation of souls.

The Book of Revelation describes the Heavenly version of this most sacred liturgy, where the prayers of the saints are never disregarded, since Heaven poses no barrier at all to God’s great and continuing work of redemption.

Why Do Catholics Consider the Virgin Mary To Be An Intercessor?

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Q: Why do Catholics consider the Blessed Virgin Mary to be an intercessor?

Isn’t Mary just a created human person, like all the rest of us? And according to the Bible, isn’t Jesus the ONE intercessor between God and man?

Please explain.

A: Since you mentioned the Bible, crack your Bible open to Genesis 3:15. There you’ll see God’s very first promise to fallen mankind, and there you’ll find the first reference to “the woman” whose “seed” would someday crush the head of the serpent. 

People insist on their own intepretation of things, but one thing is certain … Mary is that “woman” … Mary said “yes” when God sent Gabriel to ask her to be the mother of his divine son … and some 9 months hence … Jesus did indeed emerge from Mary’s blessed womb.

Mary remained Jesus’ mom, and his first, best, and most constant disciple, ever since … and if that’s not a selfless act of intercession on behalf of all mankind (second only to God’s) than I don’t know what is.

Furthermore … anyone who expects Jesus to ignore this fact, and merely “discard” his mother Mary, once she had served her purpose, doesn’t know God! 

But there’s more. Go to the Gospel of Luke, chapter 1, verse 32.

Gabriel explains to Mary precisely WHO her son will be. One of his titles is the eternal King of the Royal House of Israel. And since Mary will ALWAYS be Jesus’ mom, Mary will ALWAYS remain the mother of the King.

According to the practices of the Royal House, first established by King David, later observed and followed by King Solomon, and ratified by God, through the authentic scriptures, the MOTHER of the King is the QUEEN, and the official duty of the Queen of the Royal House is to intercede with the King, on behalf of the people.   

Meet me at the 1st Book of Kings, Chapter 2, beginning with verse 12, for the proof.

Witness a disgruntled and powerless Adonais approaching Bathsheba, the Queen Mother, asking her to intercede for him, with  King Solomon. Then, witness the way the Queen is subsequently received:

The Queen enjoys unrestricted access to the King.

As the Queen approaches, the King sets up a throne for her, at this right hand.

He bows, and gives her his undivided attention. 

Those familiar with the Ten Commandments might recognize this as “Honor your Father and your Mother.”

In verse 24, we see Solomon acting on his mother’s request … but not in the way Adonais had expected. Adonais will be put to death!

There’s nothing in the rules that says the King must grant his mother’s request! 

Catholics rightly understand that these Old Testament events prefigure the grace-filled, New Testament reality.

In the New Testament, Jesus works a miracle at Cana, simply because his mother (the woman) asks, while one of the enduring promises of Christ is that all the faithful will rule and reign with him, in eternity.

It was Jesus who clearly stated that he is the God of the living, and not the dead … and that Abraham was able to “see” his coming, and was glad.

For these and other very good reasons, Catholics believe that the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Queen Mother of the House of Israel, and the mother of Jesus Christ, is also alive and in Heaven, ruling and reigning with Jesus, the Eternal King of the Ages, just as he promised.      

Abraham and Isaac, the sacrifice, and the prophetic word

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 Holy Week is fast approaching.

Someone recently asked: “Does Genesis 22 make any sense to anyone who isn’t Christian?

Gen 22:2 He said to him: Take thy only begotten son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and go into the land of vision; and there thou shalt offer him for an holocaust upon one of the mountains which I will shew thee.
Gen 22:3 So Abraham rising up in the night, saddled his ass, and took with him two young men, and Isaac his son: and when he had cut wood for the holocaust, he went his way to the place which God had commanded him.
Gen 22:4 And on the third day, lifting up his eyes, he saw the place afar off.
Gen 22:5 And he said to his young men: Stay you here with the ass; I and the boy will go with speed as far as yonder, and after we have worshipped, will return to you.
Gen 22:6 And he took the wood for the holocaust, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he himself carried in his hands fire and a sword. And as they two went on together,
Gen 22:7 Isaac said to his father: My father. And he answered: What wilt thou, son? Behold, saith he, fire and wood: where is the victim for the holocaust?
Gen 22:8 And Abraham said: God will provide himself a victim for an holocaust, my son. So they went on together.
Gen 22:9 And they came to the place which God had shewn him, where he built an altar, and laid the wood in order upon it; and when he had bound Isaac his son, he laid him on the altar upon the pile of wood.
Gen 22:10 And he put forth his hand, and took the sword, to sacrifice his son.
Gen 22:11 And behold, an angel of the Lord from heaven called to him, saying: Abraham, Abraham. And he answered: Here I am.
Gen 22:12 And he said to him: Lay not thy hand upon the boy, neither do thou any thing to him: now I know that thou fearest God, and hast not spared thy only begotten son for my sake.
Gen 22:13 Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw behind his back a ram, amongst the briers, sticking fast by the horns, which he took and offered for a holocaust instead of his son.

The questioner went on to wonder if non-Christians, particularly Jews and Muslims, saw any deeper meaning in this passage, and then he went on to describe what he could see in it.

This was my reply:

A-a-a-h, but to a discerning Christian, it is the story of the lamb, and the story of Calvary, as revealed in Old Testament types and symbols.

Isaac was the son of promise … not Ishmael. And since Ishmael was banished, along with his mom … Isaac alone remains … so truly is the “only” son.

The story of the faithful and obedient son, who carries on his back, the wood for the sacrifice.

A 3-day journey.

The wood signifies the cross.

The mountain is Moriah … later known as Golgotha and Calvary.

The lamb is Christ.

The brier thicket is the crown of thorns.

Abraham and Isaac are a people saved by faith, faith that is signified and memorialized by the blood of the lamb.

And why should God sacrifice his own son for a people who wouldn’t do the same for him, anyway?