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Archive for May 15th, 2019

I receive a Roman Catholic catalog of items for liturgy and for worship items for home use. I came across this ad first thing when I received the most recent catalog:

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The description of this statue of “Sleeping St. Joseph” reeks of false doctrine:

1. “St. Joseph is said to have received messages from heaven while he was asleep”: incorrect. In the Bible it is written that the Lord communicated to Joseph through dreams, see Matthew 1:20, not “it is said” as if this is some kind of rumor or pious tradition the ‘church’ has accepted. The writer of this ad description does not seem to know it was through dreams, as recorded in the Bible.

2. It is likewise not recorded in the Bible that anyone invoked or prayed to a saint. We pray to the Lord in the Name of Jesus, no other name. From The Augsburg Confession, Article XXI, The Cult of Saints:

“…the Scripture teaches not the invocation of saints or to ask help of saints, since it sets before us the one Christ as the Mediator, Propitiation, High Priest, and Intercessor. 3] He is to be prayed to, and has promised that He will hear our prayer; and this worship He approves above all, to wit, that in all afflictions He be called upon, 1 John 2:14] If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, etc. “

The result of this non-Biblical worship practice is sheer idolatry that a statue of St. Joseph, (channeling the saint!?) can grant your “prayer requests” (Are the larger size statues more effective?) . The invocation of the saints is not a part of the pure doctrine of the Bible as confessed by the Lutheran Reformers and another reason I am a confessional Lutheran. But one may ask: Why make a big deal out of this? Yes, this is just one ad in one liturgical/worship catalog but the results can be larger, in this case idolatry. This ad is also indicative of the many falsehoods in Roman Catholic doctrine and practice.

This sleeping Joseph statue also describes the state of too many churches, not only the Roman Catholic church! Taking the Lord’s Word of Law and Promise and domesticating it, and the Kingdom of God which the Word announces in Jesus Christ, and whittling it down to our size, we only whittle new gods: See Isaiah 44: 9-22. Whittling down the Word only produces falsehoods and/or immoral practices. While ‘Joseph slept’, the Roman Catholic church, and so many other now formerly orthodox churches, allowed for, for instance, so much adultery: marriage and remarriage, living together, abortion as birth control, same-sex marriage (See St. Matthew 13: 24-30). We remade the Lord’s announcement of the reign of God into a cozy affair of only getting our way with the Lord instead of Him having His Way with us, for us and our salvation AND the salvation of our neighbor. Praying to a saint won’t accomplish the Lord’s Mission in His Church.

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