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In reply to Frank Mobbs (April AD2000), I would make the following observations.
When a person departs this life and finds himself at the pearly gates, Saint Peter is not going to ask any of the following questions: 'Are you a Catholic?'; 'Do you accept papal infallibility?'; 'Were you baptised as an infant into the Catholic Church?'; 'Before departing Earth, did you confess your sins to a Catholic priest?'; 'Did you do enough good works to merit grace?'
We must be careful to avoid the mistakes of the Pharisees of New Testament times. They thought they were the embodiment of true religion, but it was hollow, based on outward observances. They slavishly kept the traditions of their fathers and sought to understand this tradition and be true to it. Jesus denounced such an approach as it typified salvation by outward observance and good works.
God is not interested in the outward show of religion, nor of observing traditions. What God requires is a simple child-like faith in the atoning death of the Lord Jesus for your sin and my sin. Denominational label is irrelevant. Anyone who says it is important to belong to any particular church makes the same mistake as the Pharisees.
God requires from each one of His children a simple faith and trust in the propitiatory sacrifice of His dear Son. That's it, pure and simple. Faith is the key to Heaven, and also the basis for a Godly life while we sojourn on this globe.
Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 22 No 4 (May 2009), p. 15
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