Great Apologetics Articles

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Five Biblical Lists of Mortal Sins

 • October 17, 2018
One of the great deceptions of our time is that serious sin is only a remote possibility for most people
We must be more serious and mature
Simply listing mortal sins is not sufficient
Nevertheless, the Lord, in love, wants to warn us urgently of the sins that exclude us from Heaven
Rather than continue with a lot of commentary, I’d like to post five biblical lists
  • Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were (1 Cor 6:9-10). (List #1)

Finally, here is a general warning from the Lord:

 Jesus was no Stoic, indifferent to suffering or to sin. He hated sin because he loved sinful mankind, and that love implied a complete rejection of sin: “Be holy,” he says to us, even as our Father in heaven is holy. Remember the terrible judgment that threatens the final church to be warned in Revelation, the church at Laodicea: “So because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.” Jesus demands more than intellectual assent. He demands love, and love, from the kinds of creatures we are, will call our passions into play. “I come to cast fire upon the earth, and would that it were already kindled!” he cries. “I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how I am constrained until it is accomplished!” He does not come to bring peace, the false peace that is a lull while the prince of this world herds men like sheep into hell. No, he comes to bring a sword. And you cannot swing a sword unless you are passionate about it.

Are You Saved? A Catholic Response to a Common Protestant Question

 Paul Thigpen July 5, 2017


“Are you saved?”  “Well, I’m doing what the Apostle Paul tells us to do in the Bible: I’m ‘working out’ my salvation day by day” (see Phil 2:12).

What Is Salvation? According to the Catholic understanding of salvation, rooted in Scripture, we aren’t just saved from sin. We’re saved for eternal life with God.

Shipwreck Survivors. Meanwhile, we also must recognize the sobering possibility that — God forbid — we could choose someday to jump overboard again.


The Bible is Catholic

The Written Word

Oral Transmission of the Word

The Right to Interpret

The aim of the Rosary

Protestants sometimes charge Catholics with “vain repetition”

So what is “vain repetition?”

That’s what Jesus means in the second half of Matthew 6:7

The Rosary is not an emptying out but a filling up

This Eastern form of meditation is actually not only vain, but spiritually dangerous

The Rosary is powerful and transformative 


9 truths about purgatory What Catholics need to know about the ‘anteroom of heaven’

 OSV Newsweekly

9 truths about purgatory

1. Purgatory exists

2. Purgatory isn’t merely a punishment.

3. The suffering endured by souls in purgatory isn’t physical pain.

4. The souls in purgatory experience joy, as well as pain.

5. Our prayers for the dead matter eternally.

6. The holy souls intercede for us.

7. The Church’s teachings on purgatory are rooted in Scripture.

8. Purgatory wasn’t an invention of the medieval Church.

9. Purgatory is like spiritual summer school.


Are We Gods?

November 01, 2012

A common question we get here at Catholic Answers concerns paragraph 460 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

The Word became flesh to make us “partakers of the divine nature” (2 Pet. 1:4): “For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God” (St. Iranaeus, adv. haeres 3, 19, 1: PG 7/1, 939). “For the Son of God became man so that we might become God” (St. Athanasius, De inc., 54, 3: PG 25, 192B). “The only-begotten Son of God, wanting to make us sharers in his divinity, assumed our nature, so that he, made man, might make men gods” (St. Thomas Aquinas, Opusc., 57:1-4).

Only one God

A mistranslation

Still, no heresy

“Gods” by proxy

Concluding thoughts

Why I Am Not Eastern Orthodox

April 01, 2005

At a certain point in my life it became clear that I could not remain a typical American Evangelical. But where would I end up? One option I considered was becoming Eastern Orthodox. 

For an Evangelical discovering more traditional forms of Christianity, accepting certain Catholic beliefs (purgatory, indulgences, papal infallibility, the Immaculate Conception, the Assumption, etc.) is very difficult. 

Word Fights
The Papacy
Fractured Unity

Why I Didn’t Convert to Eastern Orthodoxy

October 01, 2008

I am probably a rather unusual convert to Catholicism, in that my spiritual journey to Rome involved both the other major world divisions of Christianity—Protestantism and Eastern Orthodoxy.

Not Quite “Catholic”

Does Orthodoxy Make Sense?

Proposition 1: Infallibility is to be recognized in the solemn doctrinal decisions of ecumenical councils. 

An Insufficient Proposal

Proposition 2: Infallibility is to be recognized in the solemn doctrinal decisions of those councils which are not only papally confirmed as ecumenical, but which are also subsequently accepted as such by the whole Church. 

A Murky Question of Membership

Proposition 3: Infallibility is to be recognized in the solemn doctrinal decisions of those councils which are not only papally confirmed as ecumenical, but which are also subsequently accepted as such by the whole community of those Christians who adhere to true doctrine. 

Proposition 4: Christians can come to know with certainty what is true doctrine by recognizing the solemn doctrinal decisions of those councils which are not only papally confirmed as ecumenical, but which are also subsequently accepted as such by the whole community of those Christians who adhere to true doctrine. 

A Problem at the Root


 May 31, 2018
The Visitation.jpg
The phrase Mother of God is not in Scripture, but…
“Not so fast,” say many of our Protestant friends
So how is kurios is being used in regard to Christ
The parallels are unmistakable. Elizabeth and the Gospel author (plus the unborn John the Baptist!), inspired by the Holy Spirit, recognize that Mary is the Ark of the New Covenant and bearer of the fulfillment of all that the old ark contained: not a mere man but divinity in the flesh, alive within her. She is the Mother of God.

IN SEARCH OF “THE GREAT APOSTASY” A Catholic Response to Mormon Claims

By Patrick Madrid

SINCE ITS BEGINNING in 1830, the Mormon Church has denied any continuous historical connection with Christianity. Mormonism’s founder Joseph Smith, claimed that in 1820 God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him in the woods near his home in Palmyra, New York. Jesus said that for the proceeding 1700 years (give or take a century — Mormonism can’t say exactly) the world had been living in the darkness of a total apostasy from the gospel. This was the answer to a question young Smith had been pondering. “My object in going to inquire of the Lord was to know which of these sects was right, that I might know which to join. . . .I asked the personages who stood above me in the light, which of all these sects was right (for at this time it had never entered into my heart that all were wrong), and which I should join. I was answered that I must join none of them for they were all wrong; and the Personage who addressed me [Jesus] said that all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that their professors were all corrupt” Smith convinced his credulous followers, most of them simple rural folk, that he’d been chosen, in what Mormons have come to call the First Vision, to be the first post-apostasy p…

Communion under Both Kinds

Communion under Both Kinds





Peter’s Authority More Solid Than a Rock

 Fr. Dwight Longenecker

May 01, 2010

God Is My Rock

The King’s Delegate

The Good Shepherd

The Vicar of Christ

A Successive Ministry

Debunking Conspiracy Theories About the Church

November 02, 2017

How do I approach a Protestant who “really” believes the conspiracy theories against the Church?

Devil’s actual devotees consider the Church their real and main enemy precisely because Jesus founded the Catholic Church

Satanists perversely partake of Jesus in the Eucharist in their blasphemous “Black Masses”

Anti-Catholicism makes the strangest of bedfellows.


The True Meaning of that Famous Verse

March 09, 2018
AdobeStock_139053700 (1).jpg

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, 
so that everyone who believes in him might not perish 
but might have eternal life.

— John 3:16

What is the deepest meaning of these words

Now this is a very deep reality

This love is the source of the great security and consolation


Testing a Biblical Objection to Purgatory

March 06, 2018


“Where’s purgatory in the Bible?” Protestants ask this all the time.Any Catholic who is familiar with apologetics knows to answer with 1 Corinthians 3:11-15:

But for Protestants it’s not so clear

It’s true that when Paul speaks of “the Day”

The time horizon indeed does seem to shift

Now that we know there is such a thing

Pope Benedict XVI points out in Spe Salvi

What does the word Catholic mean?
How did the Church get the name “Catholic?”
When did the Church get the name Catholic?

Until we have real feet

JPII Consecration.jpg

“By what authority do I pick and choose among the miracles underlying the faith?  “I will take the Virgin Birth, a bit of water-to-wine, and feeding the multitude.  Yes, give me a few healing miracles. Of course, I must take the Resurrection.  No, thank you; hold the Eucharist, but give me a small bowl of symbolism please.”  I was in Christianity’s cafeteria line, picking and choosing among what had been negated and denied for the last 500 years.”

The spiritual is more solid

Drama of salvation history

More not less

Prophet, Priest and King

Do you too want to leave?

Any Friend of God’s Is a Friend of Mine

Patrick Madrid.jpg  By Patrick Madrid


“Me and Jesus” Christianity is not biblical

The Church is Christ’s body

Jesus has only one body

Not separated by death

Christians bound in charity

We can only ask Christians here below to pray for us?

Two common Protestant objections

God’s friends are our friends

The “one mediator” argument 


Praying straight to God 

Boettner’s argument

Boettner ignores the Bible

Not all prayer is worship

What about multiple prayers? 

The “necromancy” argument 


Disputed Books of the Bible? A Quick Guide to a Big Topic (With Resources)!

Written By
Genevieve Perkins


1. Where did your canon come from?

2. Did someone add books? (Or did someone else subtract them?)

3. Why did Martin Luther remove these books?

4. What about St. Jerome?

5. What about the Hebrew Bible and Jewish belief?

The Septuagint was a Greek version of the Hebrew Bible, which was translated for Jews when the Greeks had Hellenized much of the area.

The Catholic canon was approved at councils of the Early Church and by saints.

6. Are there New Testament references to the deuterocanonical books?

7. What difference does language make?

And not just language, but translation!

The Deuterocanonical Books


1 Maccabees

2 Maccabees

The Book of Wisdom



Additional Resources

What Is the Answer to Suffering?

February 14, 2018


Since 1670, when they were first published, Blaise Pascal’s Penséeshave proven to be extraordinarily influential upon the minds of Christians and non-Christians alike. Avery Dulles noted, “Few if any apologetical works have brought so many unbelievers on the way to faith.”

Beginning with suffering

The fear factor

Conversion is a journey

A gospel-based approach

The Priesthood Is Both Ministerial and Universal

Tim Staples addresses the weakness of the claim that the verse in John 20 means ‘have already been forgiven’. Also the distinction between universal and ministerial priesthood.

March 01, 2010

One Mediator, Two Priesthoods

So I Send You

Tense Matters

Not Just Anyone

The Perfect Future

To put it simply: God’s power being released “from heaven” is contingent upon a future event of Peter and his successors acting on earth. That, in a nutshell, could be a dictionary definition of priest.

January 15, 2018
the keys to the Kingdom
Papal Primacy
A Sensible Office
Assisted, Not Inspired
Peter the Pitiful
Peter’s Faith Did Not Fail

Jesus Isn’t Your Buddy

January 25, 2018
Jesus buddy.jpg
In recent decades, “personal relationship” theology
But this image of Jesus as a friend is not based in Scripture
Saint Paul does not present Jesus as a “friend” either
Colossians 1:12-20 (Wednesday, Evening Prayer)
Philippians 2:6-11 (Sunday, Evening Prayer I)
Ephesians 1:3-10 (Monday, Evening Prayer)
The type of language Paul uses for Christ is, unfortunately, foreign to our ears

What If Protestants Are Right About the Eucharist?

Joe Heschmeyer  January 16, 2018
At first, it seems like such a revelation
Take, for example, the church at Smyrna
And this is the way that Christians
So why is this important?
This isn’t just about rejecting the Church’s teaching authority

Doctrine: Why We Can’t Crack

Doctrine - why we cant crack

The Apostle Paul was so confident that he was a living and real extension of Christ in the world that Paul could go so far as to say under inspiration of the Holy Ghost

Jesus is the head of the Mystical Body of Christ, but “Christ” includes the whole body of every baptized member

Because I very much believe deep in my heart: God is always faithful

Why James Says Faith Without Works Is Dead

December 27, 2017
faith without works.jpg
A salvific context
The exemplary case of father Abraham
Our Protestants friends are correct
The main point for James is that our works “complete” our faith and keep it alive.

Why ‘Mother of God’ Matters

January 01, 2018
Mother Of God Matters.jpg
The Catechism says of Mary:
This Adoptionist heresy manifests itself
Other Protestants say that “Mother of God”

More Bible Clues for the Priesthood


Priestly ranks

Who is the rebellious Korah?

Old and new priestly prerogatives

Let the light shine

We must read the New in light of the Old, and the Old in light of the New.

Looking for the Historical Jesus—Again

December 14, 2017

The Facebook Challenge

1. Pliny the Younger

2. Tacitus

3. Flavius Josephus


Topic 19: The Eucharist (I)

The Eucharist is the memorial of Christ’s Paschal mystery, making present his unique sacrifice in the liturgy of the Church.

Summaries of Catholic Teaching
Opus Dei - Topic 19: The Eucharist (I)

1. Sacramental nature of the Holy Eucharist.

1.1. What is the Eucharist?

1.2 Names given to this sacrament

1.3 The Eucharist in the sacramental order of the Church

2. The promise of the Eucharist and its institution by Christ

2.1 The promise

2.2 Institution of the sacrament and its Paschal context

2.3 Meaning and content of the Lord’s command

3. Liturgical celebration of the Eucharist

3.1 The fundamental structure of the celebration


Did God Command Jephthah to Burn His Daughter?

Did the Church Chain Up the Bible?

December 04, 2017
The notion that the Church restricts access to Scripture
It is widely believed that Luther was first to translate the Bible into German
The sixth century was witness to…
The Real Story

Defending Catholicism: Confession

Scriptural Basis for Confession – Where is Confession in the Bible?

Objection #1: Only God can forgive sin.

Objection 1A: Do I have to confess my sins to a priest? A priest is just a man – what power does he have to forgive sin?

Objection #2. The Bible says that if I believe that Jesus is Lord, I’ll be saved. Doesn’t the need for Confession mean Christ’s work was lacking in some way?

Objection #3: Why do I have to go to a priest for confession instead of going straight to God? After all, the Bible says that “there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).

Objection #4: Confession is nothing more than a permission slip to keep sinning. Since people keep sinning even after going to Confession, doesn’t that mean it doesn’t work?


Sadly, this is not an uncommon tactic
Unfortunately, slavery returned to European society
Yet despite the many papal condemnations of slavery
November 30, 2017
So Long “Solas”
The Ancient, Catholic Church
The Old Testament Canon
The Perpetual Virginity of Mary
Baptismal Regeneration
The Annunciation and Virgin Birth
Jesus and Miracles
Jesus as Prophet
The Divine Nature
So, we can find some common ground
Why aren’t more Christians rich?
Why wasn’t Jesus rich?
The poor can be rich
Where does the Bible say we are not purified of sin after death?
Where does the Bible say we should make Jesus our personal Lord and Savior?
Where does the Bible say all revelation ceased after the apostolic age?

Words and Works

Fide, not Sola Fide

It seems as plain as can be…
Many Christians wrongly think the word baptism…
Perhaps a deeper look
Luke’s account
Before and after
We can admit that there is a mystery
The Church’s understanding of the papal ministry
A second kind of evidence
A final line of evidence
Jesus prays in John 17:21

Value, Dignity, and the Christian Worldview

Naturalism, Value, and Dignity

The Problem of “Equal” Value

October 04, 2017

Reception and the Sense of the Faithful

Clarifying the “Sense of the Faithful”

The ITC on Reception

Conditions for the Sense of the Faithful

Opinion Polls and the Sense of the Faithful

What constitutes grave sin; how to know if I may receive Eucharist?

August 22, 2011 by

Understanding “Grave Matter”

Sins vs Mistakes

Why Communion and Mortal Sin Don’t Go Together


Where does this verse appear in Scripture?


Who is the serpent?

Who is the serpent’s seed?


“Give us this day our supernatural bread.”
Working in the Fourth Century A.D., St. Jerome translated the Bible from Greek into Latin, creating the Vulgate Bible. St. Jerome translated epiousios as “supersubstantial.” What’s also interesting is where St. Jerome was working: Bethlehem, the birthplace of Christ. Do you know what “Bethlehem” means in Hebrew? “House of bread“.
Forgiveness in the age to come
Paying your dues
A temporary prison
A Maccabean milieu

Real Presence Challenges Science

Patti Armstrong  Jul. 6, 2016

Miraculous Findings

No Exceptions Allowed

“The fact that these transformations have occurred in a Christian context cannot be avoided,” he said. “And neither can the fact that they confirm the original and enduring doctrine of the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist.”

April 28, 2013
Exodus 20:4 is part of the first commandment that begins in verse 3 and stretches through part of verse five:
By lifting out part of the first commandment appearing to prohibit the making of “any likeness of anything,” not only do you have God contradicting himself in later commanding the making of statues, but you also end up making the first two commandments repetitive.
Though the commandments are said to be “ten” in Exodus 34:28, they are not numbered by the inspired authors of Sacred Scripture. If you count the “you shall nots” along with the two positive commandments of keeping holy the Sabbath and honoring father and mother, you end up with 13 commandments.

Flowery, poetic language that is not intrinsically literal in nature or intent.

Interpreting the words in context (especially a Christological context).

To speak of a human being as participating in “saving” others is perfectly biblical:

1 Corinthians 9:22

1 Timothy 4:16

Philippians 2:12b-13

2 Corinthians 4:15

Ephesians 3:2

12 Early Church Quotes That Will Challenge Protestants

Here are 12 quotes from the Early Church that leave Protestants grasping at straws to explain them away. Read all 12. These are not obscure men or obscure writings. They are saints who are firmly within the mainstream of Christian history. Another 12 quotes could have been selected just as well. If a Protestant disagrees, he must ask himself, how were these guys all so clueless and why did later generations of Christians revere them so much? There must be Christian writers from the same period who were “in the right” about these topics, so can you find them?
The Promises of the Contraception Advocates
The concerns and predictions of Pope Paul VI
The divorce rate did not decline; it skyrocketed
Abortion rates did not decline; they skyrocketed as well
Women’s dignity
As for preventing/reducing STDs and AIDS
Add to this list of effects
Declining birth rates
Conclusion: Time will prove where wisdom lies. What have we learned over these decades of contraception? First, we have learned that it is a huge failure in meeting its promises; it has backfired, making things worse rather than better. Marriage, families, and children have all taken a huge hit. Bad behavior has been encouraged and all the bad consequences that flow from it are flourishing. Most people seem largely uninterested in this data. Hearts have become numb and minds have gone to sleep. I hope that you will consider this information thoughtfully and share it with others. Time has proven where wisdom lies. It is time to admit the obvious.









Situational Ethics


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