Discussion on Allan Ruhl’s channel about Protestant Faith vs. Roman Catholic Faith

I want to thank Allan Ruhl for having me on his You Tube channel. The sound quality was not good at times, but hopefully, Lord willing, we can do more of these in the future.

Basically, I mentioned the major Dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church that Protestants disagree with, and that they are “de fide” (of the faith) = required to believe by Roman Catholics in order to be saved. I said these are additions and corruptions to the Biblical gospel message.

I forgot to mention another statement by Pope Boniface VIII, in 1302, in the official document, Unam Sanctum, which is an ex-cathedra statement by a Pope (as defined by the 1870 dogma of Papal Infallibility), and one of the most arrogant claims I have ever read and completely contradicts every thing in the New Testament Scriptures:

“Furthermore, we declare, we proclaim, we define that it is absolutely necessary for salvation that every human creature be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” Pope Boniface VIII, 1302, Unam Sanctum

What a contradiction to the Gospel of John, the book of Romans, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians 3:9; Acts, and 1 Peter and Hebrews, and really, the entire NT!

These Dogmas and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church are additions and corruptions to the faith:

553 AD – the dogma of the Perpetual Virginity of Mary

1215 – the dogma of Transubstantiation

1545-1563 – The Council of Trent. All the Canons of the Council of Trent that anathematized Protestants:

Anathematizing the Doctrine of Justification by Faith Alone.

Whoever rejects Transubstantiation is Anathema. (eternally condemned – Galatians 1:6-9)

Whoever rejects Purgatory is Anathema.

Whoever rejects Indulgences is Anathema.

Whoever rejects that the Lord’s Supper is a real sacrifice is Anathema.

Whoever says that oral traditions (that the RCC brings out centuries later and claims they are apostolic) are not part of God’s word is Anathema. (Council of Trent rejects Sola Scriptura)

Whoever rejects the Apocrypha books as God-breathed / inspired / canonical – is Anathema.

Only the Roman Catholic Church has authority to interpret the Scriptures.

There are 7 sacraments, not only 2. 5 of them relate to salvation. 1 is for married couples (marriage as a sacrament) and 1 is for clergy (ordination to the priesthood). The other five are stages of the process of salvation until death.

  1. baptism – usually as a baby

2. confirmation – at age 12

3. Confession to a priest and penance

4. Eucharist / Transubstantiation

5. Last rites – before death

1854 – the Immaculate Conception of Mary

1870 – the Infallibility of the Pope

1950 – the bodily Assumption of Mary into heaven

These are all additions to the faith and contradict the gospel.

I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!

Galatians 1:6-9

So, Allan asked me about Purgatory and I gave him evidence of how one early church father understood 1 Corinthians 3:15 – “. . . he shall be saved, yet so as through fire”

Chrysostom’s comments contradict what most Roman Catholic apologists say as they attempt to muster evidence for Purgatory. Chrysostom’s view was certainly different than Augustines and other western fathers after him, like Gregory 1, bishop of Rome from 590-604 AD.

Chrysostom’s comments on 1 Corinthians 3:15 – Homily IX

In Homily 9:5-6 (very end of 5 into 6) on 1 Corinthians:

And his meaning is, “He himself shall not perish in the same way as his works, passing into nought, but he shall abide in the fire. “He calleth it, however, “Salvation,” you will say; why, that is the cause of his adding, “so as by fire:” since we also used to say, “It is preserved in the fire,” when we speak of those substances which do not immediately burn up and become ashes. For do not at sound of the word fire imagine that those who are burning pass into annihilation. And though he call such punishment Salvation, be not astonished. For his custom is in things which have an ill sound to use fair expressions, and in good things the contrary. For example, the word “Captivity” seems to be the name of an evil thing, but Paul has applied it in a good sense, when he says, “Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Cor. x. 5.) And again, to an evil thing he hath applied a good word, saying, “Sin reigned,” (Rom. v. 21.) here surely the term “reigning” is rather of auspicious sound. And so here in saying, “he shall be saved,” he hath but darkly hinted at the intensity of the penalty: as if he had said, “But himself shall remain forever in punishment.”

John Chrysostom, bishop of Constantinople (died 407 AD)


This idea is confirmed by a Greek / Eastern Orthodox website:

An Eastern Orthodox official website that explains Chyrsostom’s comment further:

“In explanation of the Apostle’s words, they quoted the commentary of S. John Chrysostom, who, using the word fire, gives it the meaning of an eternal, and not temporary, purgatorial fire; explains the words wood, hay, stubble, in the sense of bad deeds, as food for the eternal fire; the word day, as meaning the day of the last judgment; and the words saved yet so as by fire, as meaning the preservation and continuance of the sinner’s existence while suffering punishment. Keeping to this explanation, they reject the other explanation given by S. Augustine, founded on the words shall be saved, which he understood in the sense of bliss, and consequently gave quite another meaning to all this quotation. “It is very right to suppose,” wrote the Orthodox teachers, “that the Greeks should understand Greek words better than foreigners. Consequently, if we cannot prove that any one of those saints, who spoke the Greek language, explains the Apostle’s words, written in Greek, in a sense different to that given by the blessed John, then surely we must agree with the majority of these Church celebrities.” The expressions sothenai, sozesthai, and soteria, used by heathen writers, mean in our language continuance, existence (diamenein, einai.) The very idea of the Apostle’s words shows this. As fire naturally destroys, whereas those who are doomed to eternal fire are not destroyed, the Apostle says that they continue in fire, preserving and continuing their existence, though at the same time they are being burned by fire. To prove the truth of such an explanation of these words by the Apostle, (ver. 11, 15,) they make the following remarks: The Apostle divides all that is built upon the proposed foundation into two parts, never even hinting of any third, middle part. By gold, silver, stones, he means virtues; by hay, wood, stubble, that which is contrary to virtue, i. e., bad works. “Your doctrine,” they continued to tell the Latins, “would perhaps have had some foundation if he (the Apostle) had divided bad works into two kinds, and bad said that one kind is purified by God, and the other worthy of eternal punishment. But he made no such division; simply naming the works entitling man to eternal bliss, i.e., virtues, and those meriting eternal punishment, i.e., sins. After which he says, ‘Every man’s work shall be made manifest,’ and shows when this will happen, pointing to that last day, when God will render unto all according to their merits: ‘For the day,’ he says, ‘shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire.’ Evidently, this is the day of the second coming of Christ, the coming age, the day so called in a particular sense, or as opposed to the present life, which is but night. This is the day when He will come in glory, and a fiery stream shall precede Him. (Dan. vii. 10; Ps. 1. 3; xcvii. 3; 2 S. Pet. iii. 12, 15.) All this shows us that S. Paul speaks here of the last day, and of the eternal fire prepared for sinners. ‘This fire,’ says he, ‘shall try every man’s work of what sort it is,’ enlightening some works, and burning others with the workers. But when the evil deed will be destroyed by fire, the evil doers will not be destroyed also, but will continue their existence in the fire, and suffer eternally.”

An Orthodox Response to the Latin Doctrine of Purgatory: http://orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx

A commenter who goes by Settler’s Lament wrote in the comment box at You Tube:

I really appreciate the conversation Ken Temple had here so I hope this doesn’t come across as hostile but his assertion that Catholics since the Middle Ages always believed that Purgatory was strictly literal and involved physical fire and this was changed by Vatican II and modern Catholics is simply untrue. The Catholic Encyclopedia 1917 says on Purgatory: “[T]here is a purgatory, and that the souls therein are helped by the suffrages of the faithful, but principally by the acceptable Sacrifice of the Altar; the Holy Synod enjoins on the Bishops that they diligently endeavor to have the sound doctrine of the Fathers in Councils regarding purgatory everywhere taught and preached, held and believed by the faithful” (Denzinger, “Enchiridon”, 983). Further than this the definitions of the Church do not go,” The decree here from Trent is notably much broader then the strict literal and physical view. Pretty much all it says is that purgatory exists and the works of the faithful help the souls in it. And, as the Catholic Encyclopedia says from 50 years before Vatican II, the “further than this the definitions of the Church do not go.” Summa Theologica (though this section was not written by Saint Thomas IIRC) also deals with the question of if the fire of purgatory is literal and the answer it comes to is ‘we don’t know.’ The Council of Florence also intentionally excluded any mention of literal fire from its definition on purgatory. This is actually in part due to Mark of Ephesus, who is often falsely claimed to have denied purgatory but, he actually affirmed it, his issue again was with the literal fire which is what he did deny. The Eastern Orthodox Synod of Jerusalem (1672) also affirmed Purgatory in a way which is entirely consistent with the above quoted dogmatic definition of the Catholic Church. I am not claiming that the literal view wasn’t more popular in the past and less popular now. That is true but, that view was never dogmatized and even at its height it was hardly the only view among Catholics.

My Response:

Thanks Settler’s Lament! No, it does not come across as hostile at all. Thanks for educating us on more of the minute details. I want to be accurate, so I appreciate your pointing these things out. I guess the bigger issue I was trying to communicate is that the doctrine of Purgatory along with time in purgatory and years, decades, centuries, along with all the money raised for building St. Peter’s Cathedral, And ALONG with Indulgences to get less time in purgatory, all of this, with the treasury of merit and prayers to Mary and the saints, etc. was taught for centuries – from the time of the Crusades (1095-1299) all the way to Luther’s protest (1517 & forward). Allan Ruhl admitted to me that Cardinal Robert Bellarmine taught and believed that people’s time in purgatory could be very long; was a long time, even sometimes centuries in Purgatory. If the RCC taught for centuries that some do spend centuries in purgatory doing “satis passio” (suffering of atonement), what is the nature of that purging ? I was not saying the literal fire was changed after Vatican 2; I was trying to communicate that there is lots of time, decades, centuries in purgatory and along with indulgences, time can get lessened in purgatory; and that Post Vatican 2 Theology and modern RC apologetics (Jimmy Akin, Tim Staples, others) seem to say “it is just a final rush of cleansing after death before being allowed to enter into heaven” (could be just a few seconds, ? ) This is the change I was trying to communicate. my point was that for centuries the regular RCs were taught that Purgatory was suffering (and even today Satis Passio = “suffering of atonement” or – “suffering that satisfies” that one has to do himself/ herself) and indulgences still exist today in RC Dogma. The only thing that was reformed was Tetzel’s (and others) crass selling of the written certificate for money. (“As soon as the coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs”) Satis passio is still in the dogma today and that is a massive contradiction to Hebrews chapters 7, 8, 9 , Hebrews 10:10-14 – the once for all atonement and sacrifice for sins. For more details on a Protestant assessment of this, see chapter 12, The Roman Catholic Controversy, James White, pp.181-196) Also google his debates vs. 1. RC father Peter Stravinskas, and vs.2. Tim Staples (twice) and also vs. 3. Robert Sungenis and also on 4. Indulgences, vs. Peter Williams. (that one really combines the issues well) Mark of Ephesus Did deny purgatory – “On the errors of the Latins” ( 4 sermons) (according to archpriest Josiah Trenham (see Rock and Sand parts 1-2, and his book by the same title, and “An Orthodox Perspective of Roman Catholicism” ( 3 videos on You Tube – maybe in other videos also; here is a link to one of them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6zXs_cUSjQ As I recall, from memory, father Trenham and others said the EO later did agree with Purgatory for a while, but then later changed that. The EO don’t have infallibility doctrine, so they can admit when they get something wrong. (smile) even with the reforms and the modern emphasis that is so different than what was taught for centuries, it is still, in the opinion of most historic Evangelical Protestant Faith, a monstrous doctrine and dogma, that contradicts the promises of eternal life in the gospel of grace.

We talked about other things, such as Simeon Stylites (390-459 AD), who is famous for living on top of a pillar for 37 years. His disciples had to bring him some food and water, just to keep living, and he had to use a bucket to urinate and defecate and send the bucket down by a rope. I maintain that this man was mentally ill and a nut and violated Colossians 2:20-23 and the book of Galatians. “Monkery” was clearly not Biblical, as Martin Luther finally realized. Why would anyone go to the lengths that Simeon Stylites went to, if he was not trying to earn God’s favor or love or earn his salvation?

A first, before he started to live on a pillar, he was a monk in a communal monestery with other monks. His bed was full of worms because of his austere asceticism. Apparently, he never took a bath or washed his clothes; and a rope he wore around his clothing grew into his skin and worms also grew in his sores. He stank terribly and was expelled from the monastery because the other monks could not handle the stench. That is when he began to live up on a pillar.

There were worms eating on the putrefied flesh of the saint’s thigh – and it is recorded that Simeon said to the worms: “Eat from what the Lord has given you.” (The Lives of Simeon Stylites, Translated and with Introduction, by Robert Doran, p. 44, 64, 94)

Not only is what he did a violation of the book of Galatians, but also it is a clear violation of Colossians 2:20-23:

20 If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, 21 “Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!” 22 (which all refer to things destined to perish with use)—in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? 23 These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence.

Colossians 2:20-23

A commenter named Antonio wrote:

Ken comes across as a earnest christian however there’s at least a couple of points where reformers coherence fails- 1. If as Ken said, the christology of the Church in the third, fourth fifth centuries was spot on that means that the Holy Spirit was indeed guiding the Church (e.g. 1Jn4:2) how is it possible then that the Church, during that same time, got everyone else wrong, starting with the canon of Scriptures (when even protestant accept the determination of the NT canon). 2. If Jesus promised the “gates of hell shall never prevail”, how is it possible that doctrines shared by the universal Church east, west, north south, since early the Church on sacraments, the eucharist, intercession of the saints and the BV Mary, apostolic succession and priesthood etc be wrong for centuries until the supposed enlightenment of a german monk. PS: the word “represent” or “symbol” are an addition to the words of Jesus referring to the eucharist which He would have used if He wanted to say just that

My Response:

The NT canon – the early church got that right; and the Deity of Christ and the Trinity; and many things; not “every thing else”. Disagreement with “sacramental” stuff does not constitute total apostasy and does not make Jesus’ promise in Matthew 16:18 fail. “the gates of hades” = death, the second death, meaning true believers persevere. It does not mean local churches cannot fail and go apostate or liberal or be conquered. (Islam conquered much of Byzantine Empire and many churches disappeared from history) , liberal theology in modern last 200 years -those denominations that think LGBTQ is not sin are apostate and gone) Athanasius said, “they (the Arian heretics) have the buildings, but you/we have the faith” (a fragment, Festal Letter 29) true apostolic succession is the passing down of sound doctrine of the apostles, not an office of presbyter-bishop. Jesus was in His incarnational body when He said the words (Matthew 26; Mark 14; Luke 22; I Cor. 11), so the disciples at the historical event of the Last supper, could not have eaten His flesh or drank His blood. No transubstantiation. spiritual presence IS real presence. Eucharist is a wonderful word, meaning “thanksgiving” – we thank the Lord and remember His once for all atonement for sin. (after examining our hearts and life and confession of sins)

churches that deny Deity of Christ, the Virgin Birth, the resurrection, inspiration & infallibility of Scripture, the reality of eternal hell; and say that LGBTQ is not sin – they are apostate and not Christian at all. They have buildings, but do not have “the faith once for all delivered to the saints” Jude 3. the apostle Paul rebuked the Galatian churches harshly: I am amazed that have so quickly deserted Him who called you . . . Galatians 1:6, and read to verse 9. the churches in Rev. 2-3 were conquered by Islam and their lamp stands were taken away, but the last verse of each section to each church says, “the one who” (perseveres, conquers, etc.- those individuals are the ones who show themselves to be true believers and the gates of hades / the second death has no power over them, which is what Jesus meant in Matthew 16:18 “the second death has no power over them” see Revelation 2:11; Rev. 20:6; 20:14; 21:8 “Death and hades were thrown into the lake of fire; this is the second death, the lake of fire” – Rev. 20:14

About Ken Temple

I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I am a sinner who has been saved by the grace of God alone (Ephesians 2:8-9), through faith alone (Galatians 2:16; Romans 3:28; 4:1-16), in Christ alone (John 14:6). But a true faith does not stay alone, it should result in change, fruit, good works, and deeper levels of repentance and hatred of my own sins of selfishness and pride. I am not better than you! I still make mistakes and sin, but the Lord is working on me, conforming me to His character. (Romans 8:28-29; 2 Corinthians 3:16-18) When I do sin, I hate the sin as it is an affront to God, and seek His forgiveness in repentance. (Mark 1:15; 2 Corinthians 7:7-10; Colossians 3:5-16 ) Praise God for His love for sinners (Romans 5:8), shown by the voluntary coming of Christ and His freely laying down His life for us (John 10:18), becoming flesh/human (John 1:1-5; 1:14; Philippians 2:5-8), dying for sins of people from all nations, tribes, and cultures (Revelation 5:9), on the cross, in history, rising from the dead (Romans 10:9-10; Matthew 28, Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24; John 20-21; 1 Corinthians chapter 15). His resurrection from the dead proved that Jesus is the Messiah, the eternal Son of God, the word of God from eternity past; and that He was all the gospels say He was and that He is truth and the life and the way to salvation. (John 14:6)
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