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Do Catholics pray the prayer of salvation?

Discussion in 'One Bread, One Body - Catholic' started by Recon, Oct 6, 2000.

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  1. Recon

    Recon Guest

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    I know you believe intelectually that Christ's sacrifice on the cross saves you from sin and hell, but I'm curious if the Catholic church teaches the necessity of the prayer of salvation.

    It goes something like this:

    "Dear Jesus, I know that I'm a sinner. I know that nothing I can do can save me from my sins. I trust in you as you have died on the cross, that I am forgiven if I trust in you.
    I believe that you bore the punishment in my place for my sins, and were risen from the dead by God the Father. Thank you for my life and my salvation. Help me to serve you all of my life.
    I Jesus' name I pray,
    Amen"

    The wording doesn't matter at all, but it must contain a few key elements to be valid:
    * You must acknowledge that you are a sinner and not worthy of eternal life
    * You must acknowledge that you cannot do anything about your sinful state, and only Jesus can resolve this.
    * You must ask Jesus for forgiveness.
    * It must be verbal
    * You must believe it with all your heart, and accept the relationship with the real live person of Jesus Christ
    * You should thank Him for saving you.

    You can word it however you want, but if you have all the above elements, then it is finished. You are saved.

    This is the transaction, or event that turns you into a Christian and changes your life forever.
    This is why you should be able to tell people when you were saved. It is when you prayed this prayer.
    Its also something that you only need do once in your life. You can repeat the prayer at a later time of course, in terms of a recommitment to Christ but it is not for your salvation after the first time.

    Do Catholics do this? Or do they just talk about it?

    Please, I mean no disrespect, as I do not know what Catholics teach regarding this.
    I want to consider you brothers and sisters in Christ, and not as "just another religion".
    I would think that since this is the NUMBER ONE most important thing you can do in your life, that the Catholic church would put a VERY high priority on teaching this to people.
    I must assume therefore that it IS taught, but I must say that I have not heard it expressed in a Catholic setting as something important to do.
    Any insight toward this is extremely appreciated.
    Thanks.
     
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  2. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

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    Speaking strictly as a Christian can you tell me what Scripture you use to back up that statement? I've heard it before and still do not understand why it is thought that one must say something with certain criteria. And I would never assume I know the state of someone else's salvation, only the Lord can judge that. So I would be very happy to hear your scriptural backing.

    Thanks.

    BTW, then technically I'm not saved according to you. I acknowledge those beliefs all the time but I've never said the Prayer of Salvation. But I know where I'm going when I die.
     
  3. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0
    Sure thing.

    Romans 10 (9-10)

    9: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

    10: For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.


    Combine this with a lot of other truths in scripture, and you get the recipe for salvation.
    Don't forget John 3:16 ;)
     
  4. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

    987
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    Hmmm, that scripture doesn't say you have to say anything other than confessing the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that He has been raised from the dead and you will be saved.
     
  5. DEVIL STOMPER777

    DEVIL STOMPER777 Guest

    +0
    Hiya Recon!
    First off lets get one thing straight:"not all Catholics are going to Heaven"! Just like not every Baptist,Luthern,Methodist etc are either! Sadly some people who claim(& believe)they are Christians sit in their pew their whole life & never hear that sweet knock of Jesus upon the door of their hearts.Does every Catholic recite the "salvation" prayer? No(as the prayer itself is not exactly used)but if we are faithful Catholics we "we have confessed w/our lips" & asked for Christ's mercy at the foot of the cross for our salvation! Look,we have differnt traditions,but the all important basics are the same=Holy Trinity,Christs life,death,resurrection,his coming again to judge the living & dead,eternal damnation for those not protected under the Blood of Christ,angels & devils fighting over us & this world,spreading of the Gospel thru out the world! We need to turn to each other in Christian fellowship & stop all the bigotry & close-minded rhetoric(from both sides)& turn against satan & his armies!
    GOD BLESS<JESUS><
     
  6. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0
    Thanks Devilstomper, that clears a lot of things up. :)
    I must agree that the alliances between different styles of Christianity are fragile, yet the foundations are the same.

    It is these foundations that I seek to clarify, being interested in the salvation of souls, I find it important to me to inquire Catholic beliefs regarding such matters.

    More questions are to come, but I am very happy that we agree on this matter. It gives me peace to know that many of you Catholics are brothers & sisters in Christ with us.

    One reason I am pressing this particular forum currently is because it is a member of the Kings Tavern, which caught my eye as a good place to discuss Christianity and fellowship with other believers.
    To have a Catholic forum attached to this website, I feel the need to investigate its members and discover any potentially harmful belief systems before I recommend this site to my friends.
    I would be doing them an injustice to refer them here, only to have them led astray. Surely you can appreciate that. :)

    I am very happy also to hear from many of you members who are clearly "saved Catholics" I don't pretend to know the percentage of Catholics who are saved, because I cannot judge such things.
    I'm just glad that this is a healthy forum.

    Where I come from, Christians understand the "relationship" with Christ you receive upon salvation. They react strongly to this relationship, and include God in their daily lives. You can hear it in their voice, and see it in their actions. They live their faith not to affirm their salvation (which is secure) but to express joy and appreciation to Christ who saved them.
    I worry about my extended family though.
    None of them denies the Bible to be truth, but nearly all of them exhibit no signs of having a relationship with Christ himself. They appear dead in faith, and live of the world. They are "nice people" but appear to have a high degree of tolerance to anti-christian themes such as evolution, and other religions around the world. It is as if they believe that everyone has their own path to God and that they are all valid. This is of course absolutely not true, and I worry about them constantly, but fear defensiveness when I approach the subject of Christ.

    My younger sister is Catholic. She is 23 and married. Graduate College student, and study of religion and psychology.
    She doesn't exhibit any of the classic traits of a Christian. Her lifestyle choices lead me to question her salvation, although I have no doubt of her intellectual understanding of the events during Christ's time due to her studies. This saddens me, and I worry for her as well.

    I myself subscribe to no religion. I follow no rituals or traditions. In fact I find it difficult to "go with the flow" in any area of my life. I abide by God's laws the best I can, and could care less for man's laws especially if they conflict with God's laws. I have no respect for any person who thinks he is better or holier than any other. I hate oppression, ignorance, and false teachings. I don't pray for world peace because I know it isn't in God's plan. I will not worship or bow down, or pray to anything or anyone except God Himself.
    I do what God tells me to do, through His strength, and not my own.
    I pray for strength to resist specific sins I know I am weak to. I go to church regularly for the fellowship, and worship, and to hear the pastor's message which always seems to apply to my life at the moment. I take part in the communion once a month as a symbolic rememberance of Jesus Christ who's body was broken and who's blood was spilled to pay the price for all of my sins. I take pleasure and feel the warmth in the fact that Christ is my friend and guides me daily.
    I try to let God use me as His instrument, and am pleased to serve Him.

    So there you have it. This is why I am here and why I speak to you of such things as I have recently.
    I will continue to ask questions of you good people regarding your religion specifically. Perhaps we can help each other in understanding at some point.

    Thanks.
    -Recon
     
  7. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

    987
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    Recon, I understand your wanting to be careful about sending people to message board. However, as a Christian (and no, I am not Catholic), I find your attitude express in some of your statements towards Catholics, such as
    somewhat derogatory and also judgmental.

    You cannot judge what percentage of people in the church you attend are "saved" let alone Catholics because only the Lord can do that. If you serve and worship God or commit yourself to faith you do indeed subscribe to a "religion" according the Webster's Dictionary.

    Yes, I am defensive. I am defensive of anything that remotely sounds as a judgment of others. I apologize if I have offended you in any way but I feel Holy Spirit guiding me and therefore must speak.
     
  8. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0
    I can see why that would get under your skin. Sorry about that but I won't apologize for being concerned for people's salvation state.
    The truth of the matter is that many people think they are going to heaven when in fact they are not.
    The Bible tells us enough about what is required for us to be able to help people to make that decision. We are called to do such a thing, as well.

    Muslims are not going to heaven unless they do some changing. Are we called to judge them? No, I am not judging. Merely conveying God's word.
    I do the same for Catholics but it is trickier with religions who have a high percentage of Christians.
    Chances are very good in the Islamic religion that there are an extreme low (if any) amount of Christians.
    But chances are very high that Catholocism contains a large percentage of Christians. (as with any other denomination).
    The problem with Catholicism for evangelizing is that you never know if they truely have received Christ or not. There are plenty of Catholics who really believe they are ok with God but have not made the transaction.
    In Catholic's defense, there are plenty of non Catholics who think they are Christians too but aren't.
    The thing with Catholicism though, is all the teachings that contradict the Bible. It is easy to be led astray within such a system. But since Catholics are such scholars of the Bible, it is difficult to evangelize to them.

    I have not said anything judgemental here. It is not my place to judge. Only to inform.
    I expressed my happiness that there are so many "saved Catholics" on this forum, yes. But this is not being judgemental. It is rejoicing.

    As for your Webster's Dictionary reference: Who cares? Its a secular book written by man. Webster's definition of religion is different than God's I believe.
    Religion is merely having a ritualistic set of behaviors and traditions.
    Christianity is not a religion, as I am often found telling athiests. Christianity is a faith, and you can have your own religion in addition to that, as long as it doesn't contradict your faith.
    I personally don't have a religion. I have a faith. I have THE faith.
     
  9. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

    987
    +14
    Catholic
    Yes, you're right. The Bible gives all we need to know for salvation and we are to share that. Deciding if someone is "saved" or not is a judgment. As for this statement,
    that applies no more to Catholics than to anyone claiming to be a Christian. The fact that you are singling Catholics out is another judgment.

    Actually, you are assuming that God's definition of religion is different from man's. Big assumption with no basis. So at what point did it change from
    or the various other places in the Bible to your definition? And if comes down to it, I think most Christians will believe God's Word.

    As for the apology, since I didn't expect one from you nor did I ask for one, it is inconsequential.
     
  10. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Recon, every time a Catholic goes to Mass, he recites the sinner's prayer. The Mass contains every aspect of it, and more. Let's look at your list of requirements:



    Penitential rite at the start of Mass: "I confess to Almighty God, and to you, my borthers and sisters, that I have sinned through my own fault; in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done, and in what I have failed to do."


    In the Eucharistic Prayer: "Time and again we broke your covenant, but you did not abandon us. Instead, throuh your Son, Jesus our Lord, you bound yourself even more closely to the human family. When we were lost and could not find our way to you, you loved us more than ever; Jesus, your Son, innocent and without sin, gave Himself into our hands, and was nailed to a cross. "



    From the Kyrie: "May almighty God have mercy upon us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life, amen. Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy, Lord, have mercy."
    A Catholic also asks for forgiveness every time he goes to confession.


    Everything I'm quoting here is verbal, spoken by the priest and the people.



    That goes without saying.


    From the Eucharistic prayer: "Father, we do well always and everywhere to give you thanks through Jesus Christ our Lord."

    I might also add that every time someone is baptized, the entire congregation repeats the answers to the questions the priest asks of the baptizee; I won't go into all of it, but part of it runs:

    Q: Do you reject Satan?
    A: I do.

    Q:And all his works?
    A: I do.

    Q: Do you believe in God, the Father almighty?
    A: I do believe.

    Q: Do you believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord?
    A: I do.

    There's more, of course, but that's part of it. So, yes, Catholics do recite a sinner's prayer, every Sunday. We don't do it the same way you do, but it ain't wrong, it's just different. ;) I might also mention that we don't feel that salvation is a "once in a lifetime" experience like you do; we feel that it's a "lifelong" experience---you have to live your entire life in service to God; this is something that takes your entire lifetime, not just a split second after reciting the sinner's prayer.

    Blessings,
    ----Wols.
     
  11. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0
    Well that's a relief. Though the part where you said "That goes without saying"
    Um, sorry but no, that does not go without saying.
    Do you realize how common it is to simply utter the words, and not ingest it into your heart? Some people say the words, just to cover themselves and continue on without Christ in their heart.

    Yes we have different beliefs regarding salvation, where you believe that it is until you sin again, and I believe that I am forgiven for ALL my sins, even the ones I have not committed yet.

    I want to clear up something in advance though. Don't think that we just "get saved" and then go on our merry way and don't do anything further. Christians don't stop being spiritual minded just because we're saved.
    I ask Christ to save me once, and I am saved.
    Then I spend the rest of my life praising and worshipping and serving Him. Its a very personal and unique thing. Not rigid and structured and organized by someone else.

    [personal opinion]
    At the risk of sounding judgemental, I must say it was quite creepy at my sister's wedding, when the priest was reciting things, and suddenly the entire audience would reply simultaneously, quite Borg-like (if you are a Trek fan) and it gave me shivers. I much prefer our church where people are individuals and praising His holy name and giving thanks to God etc. You've probably never been exposed to hundreds of people all praising God independently, everyone to their own style, many raising their hands. Many kneeling. Many weeping. But every one of them in deep reverence and heartfelt appreciation for Christ who saved their lives. Its a very emotional and moving experience, and you can literally feel the presence of God in the room. You can feel His energy flow through you, and lift you up. Its undescribable. I have been in Catholic churches, and I have never once felt the presence of God in there.
    [/personal opinion]

    Sorry if that sounds judgemental and I *know* I crossed the line on that one. I respect your right to do it your way, but in my personal opinion, that's just creepy, and I get cold chills when I witness it. Please, I mean no personal offense...

     
  12. DEVIL STOMPER777

    DEVIL STOMPER777 Guest

    +0
    Happy YOM KIPPUR!
    Hiya Recon,I can relate to your feelings toward Catholics(I can do it w/out even using a Vulcan mind-meld lol)!"I too am a trekkie,although old-school"! Enuff of all that...As stated prev I was raised initially non-denominational & then we became Pentecostal around 14yrs of age. I have been witness to Holy Ghost revivals,being slain in the spirit,tounges,H.G. laughter,healings,deliverance etc! I was raised & indoctrinated to believe w/out a shadow of a doubt that Roman Catholics were serving "The Whore of Babylon",that they were pagans & going straight to hell(dont pass go,dont collect $200)! Then to the great consternation of my mother I began dating a "gasp" Catholic girl! At this time I was 18 & no longer living the Christian life(although I was "saved" at age 12)Long theological battles ensued between my girlfriend(now my wife)although she never tried to push Catholic doctrine at me(I always started it).After looking into the Faith,a lot of things began making a whole lotta sense. I began praying again & reading scripture.I began praying to THE HOLY GHOST for guidance & knowledge.I began going to mass w/out hostile intent,& u know what,I did feel the presence of Christ in a way I never had before in my life! I truly felt that I was standing before The Father,SON & The Holy Ghost & it was a humbling experiance & it still is! I cant make u undertand this,but just to let u know that our "experiance & worship of God may be different,but still very much the same!
    Yours in Christ,
     
  13. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

    987
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    Originally posted by Recon:
     
  14. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0


    Whoa!! [​IMG] I have NEVER heard such a thing taught about Catholics!

    I didn't grow up in the church, but at age 24 I became a Christian.
    My wife and I were married in a little Baptist church in North Carolina where I lived at the time. It was my first exposure to real Christianity probably ever, but something didn't feel right about it.
    Then we went to a non-denominational church for a year or so, and we moved to Minnesota where we live now.
    We went church shopping, trying to find one where the people didn't have such a "we're not worthy" attitude. We had to find a church that had Christian fellowship like our business does. Real heart, plus the lack of intense hatred for wealth.
    We finally stumbled upon an Assemblies of God church, and it felt like we were finally home! I've never heard of Pentecostals but they sure are nice! Very sincere, down-to-earth people, and casual too! They understood the concept of "personal relationship with Christ". They taught that we are indwelled by the Holy Spirit, and explained how He guides us. It made perfect sense, and explained a lot of stuff in our lives that we didn't understand.
    We asked about Pentecostals and it turns out that these weren't the old-fashioned Pentecostals like I read about in other places. I read about the ones that had strict dress codes, and only sang hymns, and were very stuffy. These people were NOTHING like that.
    Anyway, we kept going there, and are now on our third AG church, after two relocations within the metro area. I have to say that these are the MOST incredible people I've ever seen! So honest, and outgoing, and sincere and friendly. Its like a real family.

    So it surprises me that you've had such an obviously BAD experience with the AG church. I assure you that our church is nothing like that.
     
  15. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Well, in my personal humble opinion, I prefer a structured worship environment rather than a very unstructured one. Everybody doing their own thing is fine, if that's what you prefer; I prefer to know what's coming next so I can quietly and prayerfully concentrate on worshipping God. A lot of activity, noise, and confusion is extremely distracting to me.

    I suppose you could say that the worship style in the Catholic Church was thought up by someone other than myself. But I suspect, Recon, that you didn't invent the worship style in your church, either, did you? You adopted the worship style that you found already preexisting there, because it felt comfortable for you. That was something thought up by somebody else.

    As for "feeling" the Presence of God, sometimes I do, and sometimes I don't. Catholic churches, Protestant churches, cow pastures, city streets, country roads, apartment buildings, barracks buildings, mine fields, doesn't matter. Sometimes I feel Him, sometimes I don't. Fortunately for us, our relationship with Him is not based on how we feel. We have a relationship with God, whether we feel His Presence or not, and on those occasions when we don't, we trust that He is still there. That is, after all, what faith is all about. :)

    Blessings,
    ----Wols.
    ______________________________________________
    You are surrounded. Resistance is futile. Surrender your weapons and submit to the will of the collective.
     
  16. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0

    Just so we're understanding each other, I'm not talking about noisy revival type worship here.
    Typically the noise level in the room doesn't go above quiet utterances, and whispers, but everybody is worshipping independently. Often its silent, where we just bask in the presence of God. Often the pastor leads the congregation in prayer, but it isn't some rehearsed thing. Almost nothing is rehearsed, and I like that because it seems more "real" and inspired that way. Its a lot like the situations you find in the LB books. Too structured or methodical, and I must question if the speaker is speaking from his heart, or merely reciting a memorized quotation.
    Ever go to a major business convention where there is a speaker talking to a large audience without notes? He's talking from personal experience, as if in a conversation.
    Its much more dynamic than someone like a politician who is reading from his notes.

    Better illustration:
    How would you like it if your best friend always talked to you by reading from notes, and said the exact same thing every time he talked to you? Wouldn't you start to question his sincerity? Wouldn't you wonder if he really had a relationship with you? Wouldn't it be awkward?
    That's exactly how I think God feels. God's a person too, a living being that has emotions like us. He created us in His image. He's not just a power or concept.
    God is my best friend, and I talk to him as I would talk to a friend. I would never insult a best friend by speaking to him from notes a pre-designed speech. I talk to God about what's on my mind. Its custom and different each time.

    ROFL! [​IMG]
     
  17. Clay

    Clay Clay in the Potter's Hand

    +15
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    Vain repition comes to mind.
     
  18. Wolseley

    Wolseley Beaucoup-Diên-Cai-Dāu

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    Does it? Just remember that Jesus wasn't condemning repetitious prayers----only vain repetitious prayers. I certainly don't see the prayers we repeat at Mass every Sunday as being vain. :)

    And anyway, if God was displeased with repeating prayers, why did Jesus repeat the same prayers over and over again in the Garden of Gethsemane? (Cf. Matt. 26:39-44.) I guess His prayers must not have been vain, either....and therefore acceptable.

    Key word: "vain". Not "repetition". " Vain".

    Blessings,
    ---Wols.
     
  19. Recon

    Recon Guest

    +0
    Wols, I'm disappointed. You never gave me your thoughts on how you would feel if your best friend always spoke to you from notes every time you talked.
     
  20. onesheep

    onesheep Sheep that looks like Bob

    987
    +14
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    I know this was directed to Wolsley but I can only say that since a Catholic Mass has never sounded to me as if my "best friend always spoke to me from notes every time he talked" then the question isn't relelvant.

    However, some people do talk like that because of their nature. :D
     
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