Being saved by Christ's Death on the Cross and Graces necessary to get to Heavengreenspun.com : LUSENET : Catholic : One Thread
I listened to a radio talk show a few years back which was non-Catholic. They were saying that we will all go to heaven if we accept Christ because he died for our sins and that is all we have to do. They said the Catholics do not believe this and that we need graces, etc. to get to Heaven. What are these graces? What do the Catholics teach about what we have to do to get to Heaven. I am a Catholic, but I never worried about these issues and never really questioned it before.
-- Pat Husch (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2005
welcome to the the forum. what are needed to enter heaven are not taught to be called "graces." we enter heaven the same way that Christ told us. that is to say, we are never able to live a perfect life which is deserving of heaven. our sin condemns us to death. BUT Christ did die for our sins, the penalty is paid, and we are forgiven because of the Grace of our Lord God.
but what is required on our part? first and foremost, faith. we must have faith. second, we attempt wholeheartedly to live a saintly life by avoiding the breaking of the commandments of God. Third, we execute the sacraments according to the commands of God and Christ (baptism, confession, Holy Communion, confirmation, marraige, holy orders, and last rights). finally, we form our lives to the will of God, which is to do good works. we are told in James that faith without works is dead, and Jesus commands us to live a life of works as well as faith. WHY? why if our works cannot make us worthy to enter heaven should we do them? because good works are commanded by God and it is right and good that we should do them regardless of the fact that they do not save us.
-- paul h (dontSendMeMail@notAnAddress.com), January 09, 2005.
Protestants make an issue of this because they don't understand the Catholic teaching on the subject, which of course has been the Christian teaching on the subject since the time of Christ. They mistakenly think that we Catholics try to work our way to heaven, or "earn" heaven by doing good things on earth. Of course the Catholic Church teaches no such thing. Salvation is a free gift of God which cannot be earned; but like any gift it must be accepted. We accept the gift of salvation by actively accepting Christ. The key word here is "actively". If a person says they accept Christ, but does no works of Christian charity as evidence of that acceptance, then they will not be saved. That's what the Christian Church has taught since the beginning, and what the Bible states repeatedly. Protestants actually agree with this because, they say, if you don't have any works to show, you never really did accept Christ. Which is correct. Their whole issue here is that the works themselves do not earn salvation, which is exactly what the Catholic Church teaches, but most Protestants don't understand this. They usually state that "works are not necessary for salvation", but that is not an accurate statement, and directly conflicts with the Bible. Works do not directly produce or earn salvation, yet they are necessary for salvation because those who don't do such works have not actively accepted Christ, and will not be saved.
-- Paul M. (PaulCyp@cox.net), January 09, 2005.
Works do not directly produce or earn salvation, yet they are necessary for salvation
One could say that it's a matter of the law of life. For instance, one need not tell an apple tree to not produce oranges, because the apple tree already has the apple life within it, governing it and regulating it to produce fruit of a particular nature and shape.
In the same principle, those who receive Christ ought to spontaneously produce good works as a result of the law of life that governs their living. If works do not come from the Christian believer, then you'd seriously wonder if they're Christian at all.
-- Oliver Fischer (email@example.com), January 09, 2005.
Having a relationship with Jesus *is* salvation: wholeness, abundant life, eternal life, joy and peace.
"Graces" are just the love, power and light of Christ working in our lives. "Grace" is just that love that saves us as a free gift.
The sacraments are means whereby we can experience that grace in our lives!
P.S. Grace is another word for "freely-given love".
Have a blessed journey!
-- Michael (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 10, 2005.
There's an all-important doctrine revealed to his Church by Jesus Christ. No soul can hope to enter heaven without ''sanctifying grace.'' Unless we conserve, hold onto-- sanctifying grace, we'll be damned.
This grace comes to His faithful directly out of Christ's inifinite merits. He earned them from our Almighty Father when He died WILLINGLY upon the cross. Grace is what we call them; Sanctifying Grace. Protestants have come to call this ''amazing grace'', a beautiful term indeed. Their misfortune is they fail to see how that grace is sent down to us through His Church.. The Holy Catholic Church.
It isn't come by easily, either. It requires our faith and obedience to God's commandments. That means SIN can lose us the grace we HAVE TO KEEP for our salvation; every Christian soul.
You see; this is the deeper truth about salvation: We never deserved salvation and we never will. Not even if we do good works, deny ourselves, pray, suffer-- NOTHING. Only Jesus Christ merits our salvation, by His sacrifice for us on the cross. We depend on HIM entirely. Without His GRACE, merited for us by His death and resurrection, we will all be damned. Because we sin. But by this grace and our obedience we are made HOLY before God; as his Son is Holy. Jesus has taught us holiness and obedience, for love of Our Father; and He becomes US; and we become His people; His Holy Church. --Seeing this, God Our Father sees Jesus; whom He loves beyond infinity. And He forgives us our sins. --For His Divine Son.
-- eugene c. chavez (email@example.com), January 10, 2005.