And so this first conviction was to help my Catholic friends to see the simple Gospel of Jesus Christ, to show them the Bible, and to show them that in the Bible, you just accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and that’s all it takes. None of this claptrap: Not Mary, not the saints, not purgatory, not devotions, just asking Jesus to be Savior and Lord.
Around that time I was dating a girl who was Catholic, and we were becoming more serious. But I knew there was no future in our relationship if she remained Catholic. So I gave to her a very large volume, a book by Loraine Boettner entitled Roman Catholicism. It’s known as the bible of Anti-Catholicism. It’s four hundred and fifty plus pages filled with all kinds of distortions and lies about the Catholic Church. But I didn’t know that at the time, so I shared it in good faith with her. She read it from cover to cover. She wrote me that summer and said, “Thanks for the book; I’ll never go back to Mass again.” And I say that with a certain shame and sorrow, but I say that to illustrate the sincerity that many Bible Christians have when it comes to opposing the Catholic Church. I figured that if the wafer they’re worshipping up on that altar is not God, then they’re idolaters, they’re pagans, they are to be pitied and opposed. If the Pope in Rome is not the infallible vicar of Christ who can bind hundreds of millions of Catholics in their beliefs and practices, then he’s a tyrant. He’s a spiritual dictator pure and simple. And because I didn’t think he was the infallible vicar, I thought it was very reasonable for me to help Catholics to see the same thing in order to get them to leave the Church.
The only Catholic in my family on both sides was my beloved grandmother. She was very quiet, very humble, very holy, I have to admit. And she was also a devout Catholic. When she passed away, I was given her religious belongings by my parents. I went through her prayer book and her missal, and then I found her rosary beads. All of this stuff just made me sick inside. I knew my grandmother had a real faith in Jesus, but I wondered what would all of this mean. So I tore apart her rosary beads, and I threw them in this waste can. I thought of these beads almost like chains that at last she was broken free from. That was the second aspect of my own outlook: that these people might have some faith but it was just surrounded by lies, and so they needed loving Bible Christians to get them out.
Crossposted at Brutally Honest.