I would consider myself a fundamentalist in the sense that I believe in the fundamentals of Christianity. But I’ve found that a lot of Protestants in evangelical Christianity have a sense of anti-Catholicism; and as a result, have not really thought through the implications and the inconsistencies of their view. Namely, that Catholicism was pretty much the only form of Christianity that existed for most of church history. They seem to believe that everybody went to Hell until Luther and the Protestant Reformation came around! This is an example of ignorance and theological perfectionism, in my opinion.
Facebook Post: Catholicism is a false religion: like Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam.
Wesley Gospel: Even though Martin Luther used to be Catholic, the church fathers were Catholic, and hundreds of Catholic saints cast out demons.
Anti-Catholic: I’m so grateful for the awesome work Martin Luther and John Calvin did and the changes they made…Yes, the Catholics thought they can keep on sinning and their secrets are hidden, everything they did in the dark came to light and the world see them for who they really are…Yes, sure! and so the Catholics keep on sinning and the demons return seven times.
Wesley Gospel: So I guess the church history timeline looks like this for you guys:
1 – 33 AD – Jesus and the 12 apostles.
34 AD – 350 AD – The devil takes control of the church through Catholicism entering in.
351 AD – 1530 AD – The devil controlled the entire body of Christ through the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church. There were no true Christians or real Christian preachers during this time period. Also, the Holy Spirit basically withdrew from the world and went up into Heaven.
1530 AD – Present – The Protestant Reformation started and brought the Bible back into the front and center of Christianity. The Holy Spirit came back and real Christians started showing up again. But before the Reformation, basically, every person was not saved for about 1500 years…mainly because they did not believe in the Five Solas of the Protestant Reformation.
Anti-Catholic: Huh? what can you explain to me why did the Holy Spirit of God disappeared for some time, what was the reason?
Wesley Gospel: Simple, I mean that is, according to my understanding. If I was to accept your view of Catholics, then the next step would be that no saved people existed in the world from about 34 AD to 1534 AD right. Since the Holy Spirit is needed for people to be saved, born again, regenerated, and saved by grace. But since all church members were basically Catholic during those times: in effect, there was no Holy Spirit saving activity going on at all in those times. Zero. Do I understand you correctly? Is that what you believe about church history, or…
Anti-Catholic: The Holy Spirit of God were never gone for certain periods, no the problem was with certain groups of people. And it is still happening today. People are spiritual blind and deaf, because of disobedience.
Wesley Gospel: Oh so people were being saved from Hell in the Middle Ages then?
Anti-Catholic: Hell is not on earth, people were not saved from any Hell. After Judgment Day people will go to Hell.
Wesley Gospel: Kinda skirting around my question there. Do you believe people were getting saved from the wrath and judgment of God in say the year 1435 AD? Any saved people before the Reformation?
Anti-Catholic: You are ignoring the point, you are supposed to explain to me were the Holy Spirit of God disappeared to? People came to salvation from the earliest times since the four gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John start spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit was present for that time until present.
Wesley Gospel: There was no disappearance of the Holy Spirit, ever. I was only testing the strength of your view of church history in light of Catholic church members existing in church history as the ONLY form of Christianity, for most of church history. 100% of Christians were virtually Catholic in medieval times. The Holy Spirit is omnipresent, everywhere, at all times (Psalm 139:7). I think then, what you would be implying then, by your view of Catholics is this: the Holy Spirit EXISTED from 34 AD – 1530 AD, but the Holy Spirit was never USED by people during those times. Because everyone was Catholic. So although the Holy Spirit existed back then…unfortunately, they all were damned to Hell when they died. Because their theology was messed up. They never got the privilege of reading the Bible or becoming Protestants. I guess it just stinks to be them. So sorry they had to live in those times and have zero chance of being saved from Hell, because the priests wouldn’t let them read their Bibles. Shucks. At least people started getting saved in the 1500s again, because they read Martin Luther’s books, John Calvin’s books, and the Bible. But before that, yeah, everyone just went to Hell. Shucks…
Anti-Catholic: “Hearts” my statement above: indicating that she completely affirms the view that everyone went to Hell before the Protestant Reformation started.
Wesley Gospel: Ok, yeah I don’t believe in that: and I think it’s insane that you would “heart” what I said! And that you would affirm such an ignorant view as that. My view is that many Catholics were saved before the Reformation, and there could be some still being saved today. You don’t need perfect Reformed or Baptist theology to be saved. All you need is faith in the atonement of Christ on the cross (1 Peter 2:24). And although many Catholics have strange and unbiblical beliefs: I think you will also find that many today still believe in the atonement, and repentance from sin, although not in exactly the same way that Protestants do.