Thursday, July 6, 2023

Refuting Deception Warrior Danny H. @Truth_matters20 's Anticatholic Meme

Recently we became aware of a meme circulated by "Danny H." who tweets under the handle @Truth_matters20.  He is aggressively anti-Catholic and hateful of Christianity in favor of fundamentalist Protestant rhetoric from the 16th century.  We decided to take on his meme by refuting it.  They are the same banal objects presented for centuries which have been refuted countless times by scholars.  Here are our replies to each "box" on the meme: 

Many Protestants (excluding Episcopalians and Anglicans) have an issue with Catholics calling priests "father." They cite Jesus' words about not calling anyone on earth father. At first glance, it seems Jesus is frowning upon using the word "father," however, in context, we see that Jesus is making it clear that there is only ONE Father in heaven and that all fathers are to be modeled after God the Father.  God the Father is the paradigm for what it means to be a Father. Just like God is the paradigm for what it means to be "holy."  No one can be holy without being God-like (Matthew 5:45, 1 Peter 1:16).  This is what Jesus meant. He was not prohibiting the use of the word for our biological, adoptive, or foster male parents or priests.  We see in Scripture that the word "father" is used for Abraham numerous times. This is because Abraham is the father of the faith (Romans 3:27-4:25). Similarly, this is why Paul says he has become the father of the people who preached to and converted via the Good News of Jesus Christ. See below for the numerous verses on this.  

1 Corinthians 4:15 (NCV)- For though you may have ten thousand teachers in Christ, you do not have many fathers. Through the Good News, I became your father in Christ Jesus.

Luke 1:73 (NIV) -The oath he swore to our Father Abraham

Luke 16:30 (NIV)-"'No, Father Abraham,' he said, 'but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.'

John 8:56 (NIV)-Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad."

John 8:53 (NIV)-Are you great than our Father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?"

James 2:21 (NIV)-Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when offered his son Isaac on the altar? 

So as you can see, our priests can be called "fathers" for the very fact that they brought the life of faith in us and continue to nourish it just like biological fathers alongside mothers. The Church and Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary take on the motherly role. 

We see in John 20:23 how Jesus gives the power to forgive sins. In James 5:16 we see this instruction being carried out.  Again, this was Jesus' idea and not some invention of the Catholic Church or the Vatican.

Praying to Mary and the saints is not unbiblical. In fact, they are biblical. We read in Revelation 5:8 where the saints present to the Lamb (Jesus Christ) the prayers of the people. How did they collect or even hear these prayers if Scripture says the dead cannot hear or do not know anything (Ecclesiastes 9:5)? The reality is that they do.  When we are baptized, we become part of the body of Christ and nothing can separate us from this body, not even death.  Romans 8:31-39 makes this clear. The author of the meme disagrees with Scripture by claiming the saints cannot pray for us or are even still a part of Christ's body.  So just because a saint is dead does not cut him or her from the body of Christ, the Church. We are still connected and can pray for each other just like cells in a body communicate with each other.

The Church does not present others as a mediator between God and themselves.  Jesus is the sole mediator. However, others are mediators between Jesus and men, Mary as Scripture shows us at the wedding at Cana (John2:1-12) where she intercedes on behalf of the guests and Jesus performs His first miracle and the saints as we read in Revelation 5:8.  James 5:16, Romans 1:9, 1 Timothy 2:1, Timothy 2:24 mentions praying for others.  If only Jesus intercedes, why are other biblical characters praying for others?

John 2:1-12 show us how at the Wedding of Cana the wine ran out.  The people told Mary and she in turn told Jesus to bring Him to perform His first miracle.  They could have gone to Jesus but instead went to Mary.  In Luke 1:28, the archangel Gabriel greets Mary with, "Hail Mary full of grace." This is the first line of the Hail Mary prayer.  In Revelation 5:8 we read about the prayers of the Saints rising before the Lamb. Mary is the greatest saint of them all, so she can accept prayers and bring them before her Son just like she did at the Wedding of Cana.

Statues in churches serve as reminders. They do not replace God.  They are not idols. God Himself commanded the construction of an image in Exodus 25:10-22.  Not only did God command the construction of the ark with the two golden statues of angels (cherubs), but the people also knelt down and prostrated themselves before it to pray.  Look at Joshua 7:6 "Then Joshua tore his clothes and prostrated himself with his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD until evening, he and elders of Israel; and they cast dust on their heads."  Why would God allow the Hebrews to bow before and prostrate themselves before a box with two gold statues of angels on top if He condemned images in Exodus 20?  

The reason is clear; they are not idols and God wanted them.  God allows things that bring attention to Him. Images of God, angels, and saints do not take away from this. They bring the human mind and senses to praise God and bring human beings to honor the people represented just like we honor our deceased loved ones in photos.  The idols mentioned in other parts of the Bible are not Catholic statues. These idols are of the gods of the Canaanites: Baal, Asherah, and Astarte. These do not bring attention to the One True God. This is why they are idols.  It is interesting to note that Protestant sects love to collect money. They claim God will perform miracles if they give donations. Well, what are these donations? They are dollar bills with images of dead white men.  If we take the interpretation of Danny and other Protestants, then these are idols as well.  So Protestants who request donations from their people are idol worshiping!  Ironic, right?!

So please pray for Mr. Danny H. that he accepts Jesus truly and His Holy Catholic Church, who ironically, gave us the Bible see:

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