Monday, March 7, 2011

Lent is NOT Biblical!

I was flipping through the Saturday newspaper and noticed all the churches are gearing up for Lent. Lent to me as an ex-Catholic, brings up memories in Catholic school being asked "What are you going to give up?" Usually, us kids would pick something easy, like chocolate, or a TV program we were ambivalent about, to placate the nuns. I never liked Lent, it was self-imposed gloom, that seemed to present "god" as a being who wanted us to suffer and take all the fun away. The churches were covered in purple, we were told to be more serious and pensive. Good riddance to Lent, it denies even the daily joy one should have in being a Christian, and looking to one's eternal life with Jesus Christ.

Of course now Lent is not only for the Catholics and other liturgicals, but it's moving into the evangelical world as well. The local Church of God, already has its Lent services listed on it's bill board. Many evangelicals are going to these false practices of Lent including even baptists, sadly this includes many pastors who falsely believe Lent is biblical:

Many Baptists are seeking to reclaim that pre-Easter focus -- historically called Lent -- which has been an integral part of many Christians’ experience since the earliest years of the church.

“It’s a biblical thing, not a made-up Catholic thing,” says Kyle Henderson, pastor of First Baptist Church in Athens, Texas, acknowledging a robust Baptist suspicion of spiritual practices seen as too closely associated with the Roman Catholic Church or its distant cousins, the Anglicans.


The Emergents such as the Tabernacle Baptist church in Richmond are getting into the whole "Lent" thing as expected, focusing on all on the experience. I show this video as an example, but the odd playing with ashes here, must be an aspect of the whole Emergent "contemplative" thing. I find it all rather silly and boring:




Tomorrow is Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras, where in Catholic countries and New Orleans and elsewhere, people will celebrate in revelry, excess and indulgence, with paganism included to prepare for the austerity of Lent. We have all seen the scenes of drunken partiers and half dressed people celebrating these festivals. In fact "Carnival" as it is called in Latin America, is rooted in earlier pagan traditions.


Carnevale (or Carnivale, or Carnavale, alternate spellings you may find), is a festival which can trace its roots back to the Roman Saturnalia, a festival held in mid-December to honor the god Saturn with feasting, gift giving and role reversal. As often happened with such festivals, Catholics found a way to work the festival into their own liturgical year


By the way Katrina and our bad economy never stopped the revelry going on in New Orleans which often include overtly pagan themes: [such as with this Egyptian themed float and costumes:




Photo Caption: "Riders toss beads and trinkets to the crowd during the Thoth parade on St. Charles Avenue in Uptown New Orleans March 6, 2011. Carnival season is under way in New Orleans with parades every day until Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, March 8. (UPI Photo/A.J. Sisco"

It is interesting what the Catholics will admit about Lent themselves...

The reasons for celebrating our major feasts when we do are many and varied. In general, however, it is true that many of them have at least an indirect connection with the pre-Christian [pagan] feasts celebrated about the same time of year feasts centering around the harvest, the rebirth of the sun at the winter solstice (now Dec. 21, but Dec. 25 in the old Julian calendar), the renewal of nature in spring, and so on.

Source: The New Question Box -Catholic Life for the Nineties, copyright 1988 by John J. Dietzen, M.A., S.T.L., ISBN 0-940518-01-5 (paperback), published by Guildhall Publishers, Peoria Illinois, 61651., page 554.


So it is obvious these holidays are not based on any earlier Jewish observance, or Christian one, Lent wasn't even celebrated until centuries after the time of Jesus Christ. Think about how the date for Easter is chosen [another holiday that is not biblical] but based upon the spring equinox. Is that Biblical? No. "How is the Date for Easter Calculated Each Year"?


Easter Sunday typically falls on a different date each year. Easter is always the first Sunday after or on the first full moon, after the Spring (vernal) Equinox in the Northern hemisphere and the Autumnal Equinox in the Southern hemisphere.



Remember the timing of all these other days, is based on what day Easter falls upon with Lent starting 40 days prior.

After the Mardis Gras celebrations then comes Ash Wednesday, which the celebration of, goes directly against God's Word. This is the day Catholics and others line up before the priest to ritually have ashes smeared on to their foreheads in the shape of a cross. We did not wash them off but wore them around all day until they came off or we took our next shower or bath. It's morbid focus on death, and darkness goes against Jesus's direct instructions:





Matthew 6:16 (KJV)

Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast.
Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

17 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;

18 That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.


Remember on Ash Wednesday Catholics are called to fast, as well as every Friday during Lent [it used to be every Friday during the year] where they are not to eat meat. In the old days, Catholics were told eating a hot dog, basically could send you to hell, if eaten at the wrong time. We were forbidden to have meat in my household and Catholic school on certain days. Sometimes odd discrepancies came up where a dinner of Lobster at Red Lobster was deemed OK by Catholic rules and standards but not a cheap bologna sandwich for dinner. A few years ago, I met an ex-Catholic couple who told me they just couldn't abide by a hamburger being a mortal sin one year and the next not being as big of a deal. When I was still Catholic, life got interesting for me since I am allergic to all seafood. The odd wiggling about fish "not really being meat" too never made sense to me. It is all about false traditions and rules, and the bondage of false religious rituals.

Paul warned against this sort of thing:



Galatians 4:9 (KJV) But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?

10 Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years.

11 I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.


I'm glad to be done with Lent. No more self imposed gloom but joy in the Lord.


Titus 2:13 {KJV} Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

61 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, it's all back to that queen of heaven. Fish were eaten in honor of her. Venus was symbolized in the fish because of its high fertility rate. The goddess Freya (Friday) also was honored with the eating of fish on Fridays. The Roman cult is all about the queen. Anon. #1

Bible Believer said...

I didn't know that about fish being eating in honor of the queen of heaven, interesting regarding Freya. Well that does explain the 'fish isn't really meat' outclause....

Galatianstoo said...

My dear brother - you are right the word "LENT" is not in the Bible, but fasting, self-examination, and practicing self-denial most certainly are. Don't let your hysteria about catholicism make you react in an irrational manner. Of course the nonsense in New Orleans is ridiculous and sinful - anybody can see that, but that proves nothing about Lent in and of itself. The forty day fast prior to Easter precedes the existence of the Roman Catholic church by almost 200 years. I am not trying to insult you brother but you would know this if you had done your work in study, and with all due respect, if you are going to try to teach, you really ought to study first. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon your blog reading up upon lent and wanted to respond.

Interestingly enough, I believe much of the meaning of lent can be lost upon individuals, but that is purely the individual's choice. It was like one time when a Baptist Pastor explained to me that his church only did communion once a month "so that it didn't lose its meaning."

And if it were to lose its meaning? Is that the fault of the pastor? The church? Of God? Absolutely not. It is on the individual who fails to see its value.

Lent refers to spring and pulls upon themes in the Bible, such as Jesus' fast of 40 days (which is why it is 40 days long). The idea of giving something up, again, is not to simply give something up for tradition. Lent is a period of repentance (and no, not just saying hail mary's and our fathers), but of turning away from sin and back to the gospel.

Ash Wednesday comes from a tradition of openly showing repentance to God through the use of ashes on the had.

Incorrectly, you stated it has no Biblical value. I will give you some Bible verses to show this tradition:

2 Samuel 13:19

And Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the long robe that she wore. And she laid her hand on her head and went away, crying aloud as she went

Luke 10:13 ESV

“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes.

Daniel 9:3 ESV

Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes.

Job 42:6 ESV

Therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.

Lent in and of itself calls for renewal of our Christian faith and focus on Christ. Yes, there is a bit of somber nature in our repentance as we analyze and work on the things which keep us from Christ.

No, giving up chocolate or tv or something else is not the purpose of Lent.

Yes, it is a joyful experience as we draw closer to God.

I would advise to be careful about attacking something because you had a bad experience with it.

The failure of an individual man to find meaning in repentant and refocusing practices for 40 days before the joyous resurrection is celebrated does not lie with the practices themselves.

I agree that what happens before Lent is sinful. But be aware- No one has ever stated that these things are the true meaning of Lent.

You're right, it is not in the Bible. But the tradition and practices date back to Old Testament and New Testament practices or our predecessors (i.e.- Ashes), imitating Christ in sacrifice (40 days of spiritual focus and fast), and being born again in our faith as we draw closer to God to celebrate the Resurrection.

It is ultimately an incredibly joyful experience.

It is interesting you used the Bible verse of Matthew 6:16. That was said in mass yesterday when we contemplated on being joyful in our spiritual sacrifices to Christ. Wearing ashes on our head does not mean we are loudly praying on corners, etc.. it signifies what is going on in our heart and dates far back in Christian tradition.

So, please, spare me generalizations here. I can understand if you were to say that the meaning can be lost upon some people, but it is no different than people throwing their hands in the air and closing their eyes while they sing loud praise songs.

The thing in both of these is: is the individual's heart in the right place?

I'd suggest you really take an unbiased look at this practice.

And no, my joy in Christ and how I find it does not have to be the same as yours. I have that joy ever day during Lent and every day after it.

God bless brother.

Bible Believer said...

What do you mean hysteria about Catholicism? I am an ex-Catholic. It teaches a false gospel and is the harlot warned of in Revelation.

Are you Eastern Orthodox? Just curious.

There is biblical fasting, as for self denial--Christians make sacrifices as led by God for the good of others, , to preach the gospel, but if you put stock in your own works to save you then you are following a false gospel.

The traditions of Eastern ascetics, entered into the EO and Catholic church where they taught suffering for sufferings sake, that is total opposite of what biblical fasting is supposed to be about.

Lent is not biblical nor is it Christian.

Bible Believer said...

To Anon.

As a Catholic child, I was led to celebrate Lent literally for years. Soup suppers, giving up something, etc.

Before I respond, I believe there are well meaning people seeking after God who celebrate Lent, but this does not change the fact it is not biblical.

Some questions for you...

Why should Christians focus on different times of the year, to do "certain" behaviors? Paul in Galatians included "seasons" [such as spring]
Why should repentance be consigned to a "special season"? That said if one is regenerated and truly born again, one does not need "Lent" as a reminder to repent but will have the conviction of the Holy Spirit. One thing disturbing about Catholicism is the lack of victory over sin, its sin, repent, sin repent--repeat. I am not saying Christians never sin but this is the system that has led many to a false religious system, that looks to confession to priests and their own works for salvation. Even Catholic repentance is not the same as biblical repentance, but when the priest gives out "penance" during confession this leads people away from the saving blood of Jesus Christ and again looking to their own works to wash them clean.

As far as Ash Wednesday goes: this too goes against Jesus Christ why should we mourn in woe and dismay when we have the Blessed Hope? In the OT sure it played a role, people knew they had trangressed God's law, but today what message does it present but a lack of trust in what Jesus did on the cross to save us from our sins? The somber aspect of it all, leads people away from God. It is not hope and joy as a Christian, but defeat. [read this blog I am not an easy belief-prosperity gospel person] but this life on this earth, has enough suffering and pain, without turning one's church service into something that celebrates darkness, depression and defeat. Even this is based in the false Catholic teaching, that one's own suffering saves them. "Corporal mortifications" and all.

Rom 5:11 And not only [so], but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.


I know Lent led me far away from God. Many ex-Catholics now Christians say the same. The apostles never celebrated Lent. Also I do not celebrate Easter, why consign the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ to one day?
Of course there is more wrong with it then that but do not have room to fully explain. The Christian believer should be celebrating the resurrection everyday!

I believe Christians are to avoid false traditions, and Lent is full of them, yes there are some that are more extreme then others. You are right about that. The false traditions of Lent, are linked to the false traditions of the Catholic Mass, which are rooted in false rituals and works.

I hope and pray one day, you like me can see the Catholic system [with its many daughters] as the false religious system it is.

http://www.chick.com/reading/books/218/218_01.asp

Galatianstoo said...

Well, thank God you cleared that up. What can we say to such impressive scholarship? One can only bow before the power of your logic.

Ten bucks to your favorite charity if you can substantiate ANY part of that last sentence.

Bible Believer said...

I have several articles written on the Catholic church here.

Check this one out.

http://galatiansfour.blogspot.com/2010/04/one-world-religion-beast-gets-ready-for.html

Rev. 17 [God's Word]substantiates it.

Anonymous said...

The pastor of a local Baptist church announced in the local newspaper that his church would be practicing lent this year and he invited others in the community to join with them -- he thanked his Roman Catholic friends for coming to appreciate the importance of lent. I already knew this Baptist pastor was a "jump on the bandwagon" type of guy -- did the 40 days of purpose and all those other "fads" -- but this especially set off some warning bells. Why should born again believers be mourning? And why should we take cues from the Roman church?? I appreciate your website for pointing to the truth.

Bible Believer said...

Around here the majority of churches are celebrating Lent and that includes a lot of the baptist ones, yeah this stuff is being pushed through. It makes sense since the 40 day of Purpose stuff usually goes along with bringing in ecumenical, Catholic celebrations.

Anonymous said...

To Bible Believer,

I am an ex-Catholic also and thank you for shedding some light on this practice. There are many reasons I left the Catholic church, the biggest being the teaching of false doctrine (i.e. purgatory, forbidding priests to marry 1 Timothy 4:3, etc). Did you also know that the Catholic bible changed the 10 commandments in their version of the bible for the sake of their idol-worshipping practices? The Catholic church is deceiving many! I thank you for sharing the truth.

Bible Believer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bible Believer said...

I am glad you got out of the Catholic church too. I appreciate your comments. I too left over the false doctrines in the Catholic church, Purgatory for me was one of the earliest ones I rejected and when I realized what the Eucharist was, that one too. Still remember my days of reading the BIble and being amazed at what didnt match or where they taught the complete opposite. Yes they take away the second commandment and divide the 10th into 2 to deceive people. I had to memorize the Catholic version of commandments in Catholic school. Hey do you remember in your missalette, at Mass, how they would take 1-2 verses out of the middle of a biblical text? Acouple years ago, I went to the Catholic bishops website where they have Mass readings for each day, and looked up the verses that got the "chop" even out of the badly translated NAB...It was quite revealing all the verses about salvation by faith, things that would bring Catholic doctrine into doubt.

truth is the fire that burns away the lies said...

Per scriptures there is NO need for the Catholic traditions and its hypocritical lent. The history of the papacy is bloody and deceptive. Jesus said "it is finished" praise him!!! We don't don't need priest, mass, rosarys or lent. someone fasting is between them and God, not to be commanded by man. Most Catholics falsely think homosexual marriage is kosher. Goes to show you how rebellious they are to Gods truth...

Bible Believer said...

Yes I saw that article where it said more Catholics are supportive of homosexual rights.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/guest-voices/post/why-do-catholics-support-gay-rights-when-the-hierarchydoes-not/2011/03/24/AFqObxVB_blog.html

Thanks for the rest of your post.

Anonymous said...

If it's not biblical, then it's FALSE.

Anonymous said...

The main problem with Lent is the fact that is in celebration of Easter (Ishtar)... Jesus is the PASSOVER LAMB, not the EASTER BUNNY.
The fact that EASTER was inserted ONE time by an anti-semitic catholic scholar in the days when King James was cannonizing scripture doesnt MAKE EASTER BIBLICAL... As CHRISTIANS we are to observe PASSOVER and keep communion with the LORD JESUS... Not the PAGAN TRADITION OF MAN.

Anonymous said...

We are saved by Grace, not works!

jeff said...

Nor am i catholic thank god im not that blind or baptist sounds like you been brainwashed by satans helper the pope im a free christian and i dont think the pope has power over the lord to add or take away anything from the bible and no man can forgive you of your sins no man onley the lord can so ever time u went to a preist and said fsther forgive me for i have sined it wasent forgiven and by the way it also says call no man father for your father is in heaven and the lord never said praise mary or angles

Anonymous said...

Do not be led astray by false prophets and their ways. Even if its done with sincerity, if its not biblical, do not be led astray. God is a jealous God! The Old Testament is a perfect example of what God excepts from his children; to follow His way and to not lean on man's own traditions and desires. When you celebrate Easter that is idol worship. As a Christian, everday you should try to rid your life of worldy desires and lusts. The Spirit will lead you. Repent and trust in the Lord with all your heart.

Anonymous said...

I really don't like ignorance that is displayed on so many of these post about religious beliefs. I am not Catholic, but I do understand that not everything is written in stone, in the bible. God has given us the opportunity and ability to make choices. And that is where Catholics that believe in lent come into play. They choose to give up things they love or enjoy, just as Jesus did and would still do. I respect them for making a choice to give up things for Jesus, just as Jesus did for us. You have made the choice to judge, which is a BIG no no. Those who choose to "teach" the world religious beliefs and God-like character will be judged much more harshly than others. So weather you are Catholic or Christian, you will be judged. Stop wasting time critiquing others and spend that time with God, seeking the truth with Him. WWJD (what would Jesus do)? He probably wouldn't be wasting his time comparing Himself to others. Pride can take over without us even seeing it. I pray the truth be set in your hearts and set you free.

Thomas S (1) said...

I saw this and first thought that this is one of the stupidest pieces of anti-Catholic drivel I have seen recently. However, I don't know you or your past (I see you are an ex-Catholic) so I will just explain the problems in your post and not guess at your motivations for writing this.

1. Disclaimer: I am not a Roman Catholic, but everyone should strive to be small-c catholic.

2. Lent has ZERO connection to pagan observances. ZERO. People on teh internetz, mostly enemies of Christianity in general, point out the Germanic pagan origin of the term "Lent". That, like "Easter" only works for English and a couple other Germanic languages, though 'Lent' only really meant 'Spring' not anything pagan per se. Here is what it is called in other Christian languages:

Latin - quadragesima ('Forty')
Irish - Carghas ('Forty')
Czech - postní doba ('Fasting Time')
Russian - velikii post ('Great Fast')
Slavonic - chetyredesjatnitsa ('Forty Day Period')
Arabic - aS-Saum al-kabiir ('The Great Fast')
Norwegian - Fastetiden ('Fasting Time')
German - Fastenzeit ('Fasting Time')
Greek - Megali Tesserakosti ('Great Forty')

Likewise, in case you also have read crud from the dark corners of teh internetz, while 'Easter' in English (and Oster in German) may have a pagan origin in name, in Greek and Latin the name takes after the Hebrew for Passover (Hebrew - pasach/pascha, Greek - pascha, Latin - pasqua, Slavonic - paskha). In Arabic, it is 3iid al-qiyaamah - 'feast of the resurrection'. Just in case you thought the Pope was infiltrating the faith with another Babylonian ritual or any like nonsense.

3. The common contemporary Western observances of picking some random item to forego for forty days is ridiculous. Lent for both Catholics and Orthodox used to mean forty days of self-denial and fasting meaning no meat, no dairy, no poultry (if you physically can manage this). This is meant to emulate Christ's time in the desert before he returns to Jerusalem.

4. You are not supposed to be happy all the time because Christ died for you. You must also remember Christ's life as man on this Earth and how the people received Him. This is why the Liturgical Calendar allows for fasting days - days of solemn, sacred memorial - and feast days - days of celebration. The Church cannot be only melancholic nor only airheadish and happy-clappy.

Anonymous said...

5. Pentecostals and Baptists are very young, recent churches. You want them to be entirely purged of catholicism? If so, don't bother calling them Christian because they will bear no resemblance not only to the Roman Catholic Church but to any of the ancient Christian churches including the Early Church, which was liturgical, the Armenians, the Indians, the (Aramaic) Syrians, the Assyrians, the Ethiopians, the Chalcedonians, the Copts, the Greeks, etc.

Most of the elements of the Eucharistic liturgy of liturgical churches did not originate in Rome but evolved organically from the Early Church, with minor regional variations. The liturgy did not originate in Rome!

6. I believe religious Catholics everywhere find the observance of Carnival in Rio quite sinful. The religious observance of Shrove Tuesday is to use up your remaining butter and eggs. That is why churches sometimes have pancake dinners on this day. You might overeat because traditionally you would not use these products for the following six weeks. There is an East Slavic variant the whole week before the Great Fast called Maslenitsa where you make lots of bliny (like crêpes) with whatever filling you like - sweet or savoury - the point being to use up dairy products. According to all churches, the time before Lent is not license to fornication and rank drunkenness.

7. No, it is not proven that Christmas is taken after Sol Invictis. There is considerable evidence to the contrary.

8. 25 December on the Julian calendar is 7 January on Gregorian, not 21 December. The difference between Julian and Gregorian adds a day every 100-150 years but Gregorian is later in any case. 7 January is Christmas in Russia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and parts of the Middle East. Christmas is also celebrated in many jurisdictions in the East that Rome never controlled, so again the Pope did not conspire to create a random pagan holiday.

9. That one may note a corresponding theme of renewal of nature or fertility in Eastertide is not problematic in the least. In ancient Christianity, you fast for forty days as spring sets in. The fast also includes sexual abstinence. In Eastertide, you have a period of feasting, without Wednesday and Friday regular fasts. This is a celebration of life and regeneration. So what? This is not pagan.

10. Passover is also calculated based on the night of a full moon after the vernal equinox. The calculation of Easter was officially divorced from this point forward in the fifth or sixth century. Previously, different jurisdictions had different practices, but some used Passover itself.

11. Ash Wednesday is actually a Western-specific observance. Lent is computed differently in Eastern churches which begin the Great Fast on a Monday. There is no service with ashes. The previous day, on Sunday evening, there is a vespers service called Forgiveness Vespers, where you ask other members of the Church to forgive you for your sins. The following day is Clean Monday where you simply try to begin the Fast with a clean mind and heart.

12. I can't speak for every weird nun but no church preaches that fasting violations send you to Hell. Fasting is for your spiritual benefit, it is not an absolute commandment.


The bigger threat to Christianity obviously comes from certain evangelicals and Calvinists who think they do not have to sacrifice anything or constantly strive to be better people to be saved, while actually often proclaiming themselves already saved and others as probably reprobate. I'm not accusing you of this, I have other people in mind.

In any case, I am sorry if you had a problem with your Catholic upbringing but you should not believe most of what you read on the internet about the ancient catholic faith. There is a lot of propaganda pushed by New Agers and Judaisers (the latter are especially well-funded) claiming that everything goes back to a Babylonian mystery cult. With a little knowledge and research you would see most of their etymologies and other claims are clearly false.

Anonymous said...

The more that I look to the gospel,the more I rest in my justification, the more I want to serve the Lord. I still struggle at this time of year even after being out of catholicism for 25 years. A darkness comes over me, a heaviness. It is hard to explain. Is it the memories that are ingrained?

Anonymous said...

Last time I checked, the celebration of Christmas and Easter are not Biblican either, but we do so because of the traditions of our faith.

Anonymous said...

It's all about a slow return to rome, like sprinkling water on an unrepentant, unsaved babies head and calling it a "baptism", which it isn't.

Bible Believer said...

why follow false traditions? Jesus tells us not to. I do not celebrate Christmas or Easter.

Laura said...

Anonymous says: "You're right, it is not in the Bible. But the tradition and practices date back to Old Testament and New Testament practices or our predecessors (i.e.- Ashes), imitating Christ in sacrifice (40 days of spiritual focus and fast), and being born again in our faith as we draw closer to God to celebrate the Resurrection."
Thank God for His holy Word, the Bible, where is says: Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. (Mark 7:7)


Anonymous said...

Actually Bible Believer is correct. Lent is not biblical. The 40 days Catholics fast actually symbolize one day for each of the 40 years of Tammuz's life in the Bible. Ishtar was a god worshipped by pagans and the reason for the ham during Easter is because it was a wild boar that attacked and killed Tammuz, their God. Easter actually means Ishtar which is just another pagan god. Same with the hunting for eggs during Easter, (the fertility god supposedly came back to earth after death in an egg)and the bunny rabbit which is the most fertile animal symbolizing the fertility of the pagan god Ishtar. Also the palm tree which is the most sacred tree in Egypt also a tree used for witchcraft today is the same tree that is burned up into ashes and placed upon Catholics foreheads to this very day for Ash Wednesday. As anyone who has read the Bible knows the Egyptians were typically pagans and an immoral people.

Bible Believer said...

Thanks last anon. Nope there is nothing biblical about Lent. It advances false works and sacrifices as well. The roots of all this stuff is in Eygpt and Mystery Babylon as well.

Anonymous said...

Omg anon the 40 days symbolizes JESUS' 40 day fast in the desert!!!! What part of that do you guys not understand?!?
Also bible believer , one thing I don't understand is how new born Christians or evangelicals say they need not do any works to be saved since Christ died and was resurrected and saved us.OK. I agree with the fact that we cannot go to heaven without believing in Jesus and his sacrifice. However, that does not mean that u can go and commit every sin but say its OK I believe Jesus died for me and that is enough! Don't u see how flawed that is and is actually serving Satan as u sin?!?
Jesus did say not everyone who says my name will be accepted in my kingdom...the idea behind Christ sacrifice is that man can never ever be pure enough or sinless to enter heaven therefore we need Christ's salvation, however God still wants u to to live your life as sinless as possible and to ask Him not some priest for forgiveness ...

U had written somewhere else that the Eucharist is satanic as Catholics or orthodox believe they are eating the flesh and blood of Christ and that is not biblical. well I refer u to John 6:54 whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood shall have eternal life

Also in regards to easter..there is passover in Jewish traditions and Jesus was killed and resurected during that time...we r merely remembering and celebrating Jesus's sacrifice for us....we remember it everyday but being in the time frame when it might have happened is even more meaningful.... As for lent, we in eastern churches unlike catholics are not taught we will go to hell if we don't do lent but it is more for ourselves, bringing closeness to God by depriving ourselves from worldly pleasures (food)...on the contrary, satan does not like that as he wants u to indugle in worldly pleasures ...I think u make good points and we should always question what any church teaches however I believe u r going a little overboard and have misunderstood a lot of practices....as a previous anon said the most ancient church are the arameic ones that started close after Christ' death and they have many same traditions....

Anonymous said...

Thank you brother Bible Believer. I am Anglican, distant cousin of roman catholics. After reading your replies, I am not going to observe Lent. It is NOT Biblical. My church celebrates Easter and Christmas. I know Easter is the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We are taught to proclaim His death and Resurrection till He comes again.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely true! God did not teach us to overindulge in gluttony and lust and then turn around and grovel for forgiveness. Also, I would like to note that fasting 40 days has no correlation with Jesus in the desert for 40 days but has definite correlation with Tammuz in the Bible and how he was worshipped as a god. Think about it. What does Jesus suffering for 40 days in the desert and then being raised from the dead after being crucified have anything to do with each other? These two events have no correlation with the next and happened far apart from each other. Tammuz died when he was 40 and what you are really doing is celebrating Tammuz disguised as a focus on God. I am also an ex catholic. Do some research on Tammuz worship in Catholicism and you will be able to do a whole 'nother article about the false teaching of Lent.

Anonymous said...

Catholicism is the biggest hoax ever created! I used to be catholic and when I started studying the Bible I was horrified! To think they are actually teaching our children this crap is beyond belief! There is almost nothing biblical about their beliefs. The bible is full of Scripture warning use of false doctrines of devils and man made traditions. How can people be so blind and stupid! How can people actually believe ANY religion or church over the Word of God?? They deny the finished work on the cross, the whole religion is based on idolatry, and they literally brainwash their followers from a very early age. Not to mention a Pope claiming to be " Christ on earth"! It scares me to know that nearly 1.2 billion catholics will burn in hell if they don't repent. Just the idolatry alone guarantees them a spot in hell. How do you think you can change the 10 commandments and that's acceptable to God??? REALLY??? WAKE UP CATHOLICS!!!!!!

Backpack Mack said...

I do not belong to any denomination but rather I am merely a follower of Jesus Christ. As such, my job is not to judge anyone for their works and walk with God. But, as a follower a job I do have is to seek out those who false present God to other people who are earnestly seeking him. To that, as it regards to this topic, I will say that Lent is a false practice. To add to that so is Easter. Now what people choose to believe in their walk with God is completely on them but I do caution following practices and doctrines with no biblical reference. For one, you are putting all your faith in another man that you are being told God meant something he didn't put in his word. Also the bible speaks on this matter should you choose to read it. It's great to have someone guide you in understanding the Lord but anything any person of God ever says about God should be substantiated by His Word. Again I say, that's like putting words in God's mouth. My concern is not whether you believe, but rather that you have all that you need to make the best decision you can on following God. Let's just look at some scriptures and you can decide but I do want to caution the practice of just taking one verse and building a doctrine around it. That's like taking one sentence out of a book and saying the whole book is about that, it may or may not be.

Mark 7:6-9 KJV
He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.

Hebrews 3:12-14 KJV
Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end

John 14:21, 24 KJV
He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.

I could keep going but my point is, in the observation of Lent, what commandment are you following but, more importantly, why are you following that commandment?

Anonymous said...

i struggle with this alot because I too am an ex catholic but my mom is still catholic. she has prayed & asked Jesus into her heart as many other catholics have too. she belives that praying with mary is not praying TO mary. but its like you & i coming together to pray for something. theres so much they do thats not biblical but the devil gets me going so that i start being judgemental.
God has shown me repeatedly that "He knows our hearts". THATS biblical. He tells me to just love people,pray for them & that He will be the judge of them. I know my mom is saved..i just see her following dumb traditions because its easier for her to do so. She believes she is serving the Lord & that her way of praying to Him is acceptable in Gods sight.
Besides...how is someone else's sin any different than our "judgemental sin" Thank our Heavenly Father for His "GRACE"

Chris Balzer said...

Amen ! Live in Christ Jesus die to sin .

Anonymous said...

AS you stated in a previous post the daily verses in the Catholic MASS are deliberately chopped up so the people do not hear the truth. I noticed today on
The US Catholic Conference of Bishops website, they chose the second reading which is from Hebrews 10:4:10
They conveniently leave out verse 11 which says,
Heb 10:11 And every PRIEST standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which CAN NEVER TAKE AWAY SINS:
Heb 10:12 But this man, after he had offered ONE sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
Heb 10:13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
Heb 10:14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
Heb 10:15 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before,
Heb 10:16 This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;
Heb 10:17 And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.
Heb 10:18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.
Heb 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
Nothing has changed in over 2000 years the same spiritual Babylonian bondage continues to this day.
~Maranatha

Bible Believer said...

Yes they will leave entire verses out. I have an old post on a message board, I may go look for where I showed that the Catholic church took entire verses out, everything having to do with salvation by faith. One can see why and how they took that verse out!

Donna Murray said...

1 Timothy 4New International Version (NIV)

4 The Spirit(A) clearly says that in later times(B) some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits(C) and things taught by demons. 2 Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.(D) 3 They forbid people to marry(E) and order them to abstain from certain foods,(F) which God created(G) to be received with thanksgiving(H) by those who believe and who know the truth. 4 For everything God created is good,(I) and nothing is to be rejected(J) if it is received with thanksgiving, 5 because it is consecrated by the word of God(K) and prayer.

6 If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters,[a] you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith(L) and of the good teaching that you have followed.(M) 7 Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales;(N) rather, train yourself to be godly.(O) 8 For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things,(P) holding promise for both the present life(Q) and the life to come.(R) 9 This is a trustworthy saying(S) that deserves full acceptance. 10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God,(T) who is the Savior of all people,(U) and especially of those who believe.

Unknown said...

Very well said. Thank you for sharing. God bless!

Jamie Gan said...

I totally agree with that too.

chris said...

Well said!

Anonymous said...

The New World Order is a conspiracy bringing ecumenism . Catholics and other religious have created a series of rites and festivals, adopted idolatry. That sounds like ecumenism . It is not biblical, and we can not make the Hebrews did in the past because we are called to self examination, to pray , watch, called to holiness without which no man shall see God, to fast in secret not subject us to false empty attitudes that do not please God. We are led to pray and learn from Jesus that prayer should have a complete content: we talk with the Father, exalt and glorify your name, ask forgiveness and more real ask the Holy Spirit to help us examine our hearts and ask Him help resist the devil, resist sin and not to make it a hypocritical spectacle. I am against ecumenism. Paul forbade Christians from mixing and God always hated the mixture. We can not follow the doctrines speak, but the sound doctrine taught by Jesus and the apostles.We are sentinels!

Anonymous said...

This is so random, but it just popped in my head when I saw the picture at the top of the post. I am an ex-Catholic, and an ex-Lutheran, and have celebrated Lent my whole life except for the past three years or so. I saw those ashes on the forehead, and it lead me to think of other marks on/in the forehead in the Bible? Just a random thought, I probably should not comment, but it just struck me. Sometimes, I think these things are to get people used to an idea.

After I got saved, those things really were empty, and when I delved a little further I understood why. Ezekiel 8:14 is one good passage that comes to mind. Then I realized that I have the Holy Spirit in me, and it really didn't make sense anymore to pick and choose days to celebrate him. Every day is that day. I'm sure I'll make some people mad with that, but it is true.

Heather

its all gonna burn anyways.lol said...

The cross was the instrument of death for Jesus,using the cross on your forehead is a sign of the devil.The bible says that mark of the beast will be placed on your forehead or right hand.Read your bible hypocrites the end is near...The catholic church has killed more people then the muslims have.Sunday worship was instituted by the Romans to control christian movements and beliefs.Every day is the sabbath,you should fast in private and worship Jesus not Mary...Just a real thought Mr heathen...

William Sculley said...

The cross was not the instrument of Christ's death. It was the instrument of Christ's victory. By His Death, Christ destroyed the power of Death. As a great Christian said:

Let no one fear death, for the Savior’s death has set us free. He that was held prisoner of it has annihilated it. By descending into Hell, He made Hell captive. He embittered it when it tasted of His flesh. And Isaiah, foretelling this, did cry: Hell, said he, was embittered, when it encountered Thee in the lower regions. It was embittered, for it was abolished. It was embittered, for it was mocked. It was embittered, for it was slain. It was embittered, for it was overthrown. It was embittered, for it was fettered in chains. It took a body, and met God face to face. It took earth, and encountered Heaven. It took that which was seen, and fell upon the unseen.

Death was defeated by God. It is for this reason that we celebrate the greatest Feast known to mankind, the greatest reason that any person could ever celebrate. My soul was saved by this amazing and beautiful fact: Death could not defeat Christ.

I say all this as preface to this: one should always prepare spiritually for a spiritual feast. That is what Lent is about. It is about preparing to meet Christ. You could make the argument that we ought to be as good year round as we are during Lent, which has truth to it. However, it ignores one basic, inescapable truth: we are human! We aren't perfect. We struggle. Lent is for training. It is there to train us to improve our spiritual strength. You don't expect a rookie Pop Warner player to perform as well as Cam Newton. No! You train him. You help him practice. Sometimes you have times of intense practice, but you don't and shouldn't push him to be as good as Cam Newton. You help him improve incrementally. This is why fasting rules are not rigid in the Christian faith. Sure, the Orthodox Church has a basic rule, but most people have personal fasting rules that they and a spiritual mentor help them set up and follow. I am actually incapable of fasting because I have to follow my doctor's orders on my diet.

Just because Lent is not directly ordered in Scripture does not make it unscriptural. The fact is that the Scriptures give prescribed fasts for the community of God back to the beginning time of the worship of God as a community. And what better time to focus on this than when they plan to celebrate the greatest gift that God gave us? Sure. They ought to be perfect, but we are fools to think that we can be perfect.

William Sculley said...

This is not related to the topic at hand. Whether or not I agree with your teachings, I understand that you sincerely intend to follow Christ, which I do believe He acknowledges. I desire prayers as I am in the hospital again. The Prednisone I was prescribed to take has been causing suicidal thoughts, so I am under observation until the Prednisone is out of my system. I need prayer that the doctors will find a way to get my ulcerative colitis under control without the prednisone.

Doug said...

I know this is an old post, but I had to let you know, as an evangelical brother of yours, that your words ring true with me. I have come to appreciate much of the Catholic and liturgical traditions. Thank you for speaking so well on this subject.

Anonymous said...

It's truly telling that Fat Tuesday is a papal holiday seeing they indulge in every hedonism imaginable thinking through this week long ritual they will eventually be forgiven through their fasting etc. then you have Ash Wednesday, then Mardi Gras which tells you all you need to know about this week long papal festival of wickedness. It's sad that Roman Catholics truly do believe that these "holidays" are of God.....James

Ed Crown said...

I come in peace, love and in Truth. The fact is that much of what the RCC practices is highly unbiblical. You have but One Mediator between God and man, and that us Jesus Christ and only a Him. The RCC has taken rituals from the Egyptian Mithra. This is where statues, votive and candles and bead prayers came from. The Rosary was implemented by Peter the Hermit in year 1080. Even the Eucharist is unbiblical. Bible says Jesus died, one time, for all time for the forgiveness of sins. But as always,what God does and says is simply not good enough. That what Christ accomplished on the cross wasn't good enough. They continue to add things. They offer each during mass as a bloodless sacrifice. They reduce our Lord to a bread wafer and a drink. Marian worship and veneration is sinful and heretical. Praying to statues of her and dead saints, bowing before the Pope is against God's word. As a former Catholic through reading of scripture, has learned that they are a false prophet and that God commanded me to leave. I can go on about all if the man-made traditions they have Instituted.

Lent is unbiblical. Fasting, prayer, being meditative and drawing closer to God should be done at your appointed time. And done regularly. But as always their traditions trump God's Word. These have also removed the second commandment, about worshipping idols and split the tenth into two parts. You either follow the world (the book of Catechisms) or you follow the Lord's word.

William Sculley said...

Re: Ed Crown

Where does it say you should appoint your own time for fasting AND that scheduled feasts are sin? If it is a sin to schedule feasts and fasts, I guess the entire book of Leviticus is sinful.

As to Marian worship, please show a place that honoring a person is the same as worshiping them. Are you then commanded in the Ten Commandments to worship your mother and father? Or is there a difference between worship and veneration? Veneration is honor.

And Nathan the prophet bowed before David. The same with Esther before the king. So I guess it's just if you hate a person that you don't bow before them?

Here's a manmade tradition people instituted: Sola Scriptura. The doctrine that the Scripture is the foundation of the Church is unscriptural.

Anonymous said...

Amen, great post

Truthspeaker said...

Yes, good word!

Truthspeaker said...

To Anon. regarding judgement-I strongly suggest you study for yourself (not talking about a Bible study, I mean studying the Bible itself) and what it says about Judging, instead of regurgitating the garbage of false prophets. Saying that Christians are not supposed to judge people's actions and other things is incorrect; that idea has caused many people to sin because they think that no one should be able to speak to them about right and wrong seen in their lives..The Scripture clearly states we are to seek wise counsel, not ignore it. Here's another problem I see with that...even if God was the only one that can judge, shouldn't you be even more in reverence of that fact?! Shouldn't you be even more worried about how God will judge you when He comes back to judge the living and the dead??? The act of judging someone is not comparing yourself to them, it's comparing them against the Scriptures. It's to help them, not harm them. It's to sharpen swords and bring back to the narrow way. It is not done in hate, but in love.

Let us all be aware of this verse. "Judge thyself if thou be of the Faith..."

What verses speak of Jesus giving up any kind of food specifically for us? I've not read them...

Jesus fasted only one time in the Bible, as far as I'm aware, in preparation for the cross. The sacrifice on the cross, of His life, that's what He gave up for us. But certainly not anything for Lenten reasons as Catholics say...So I'm not sure how you could compare that with today's practice of Catholic Lent? Giving up something mediocre like Facebook or sugar or fill-in-the-blank is nothing compared to that. Nor are Christians commanded to fast! We can, but do not have to.

You said that some things are not written in stone in the Bible...actually, they are. There is right and wrong, black and white, and it's all outlined therein. God's morality given us in the Scriptures is the basis for absolute truth, and is to be taken that way.

William Sculley said...

@Truthspeaker

You say Christ only fasted one time in Scripture, so I guess you're saying Christ disobeyed the many times that Scripture requires fasting for Jews?

Christ didn't break the law God gave. He followed the fasts and feasts outlined in the Pentateuch as well as the feast of Chanukah, called the Feast of Dedication in John.

As to what is fasted from, the fast is a lot more strict in my church than the "choose your own lent" popular in the west. However, there are many people, like me, that are specifically ordered not to fast due to medical reasons.

As to the purpose of fasting in my Church, I'll quote a few things from the Orthodox Church in America website:

----
The purpose of fasting is not to “give up” things, nor to do something “sacrificial.” The purpose of fasting is to learn discipline, to gain control of those things that are indeed within our control but that we so often allow to control us. In our culture especially, food dominates the lives of many people. We collect cookbooks. We have an entire TV network devoted to food [the “Food Channel”]. We have eating disorders, diets galore, weight loss pills, liposuction treatments, stomach stapling—all sorts of things that proceed out of the fact that we often allow food, which in an of itself cannot possible control us, to control us. We fast in order to gain control, to discipline ourselves, to gain control of those things that we have allowed to get out of control. Giving up candy—unless one is controlled by candy—is not fasting. It is giving up candy, or it is done with the idea that we fast in order to suffer. But we do not fast in order to suffer. We fast in order to get a grip on our lives and to regain control of those things that have gotten out of control. Further, as we sing during the first week of Great Lent, “while fasting from food, let us also fast from our passions.”
----

The meaning of that last quote, to fast from our passions, is not that we should not be passionate about good things like the salvation of the human souls both inside us and in those around us, but to take those passions of pride, lust, gluttony, and come at them with a renewed vigor, to fight against them with more "gusto".

To quote Deacon Michael Hyatt, "A fast without prayer, almsgiving, and good works is only a diet". If a person approaches a fast expecting that God will reward them for fasting, then he will receive no reward. When one fasts during Lent, or any other time, he ought not to show it to all around him. When he goes to a house where they serve foods he is fasting from, he should receive them with gratitude rather than turn them down. He should not advertise that he is fasting or what he is fasting from. As Christ says, if he should do that, then he has received his reward in full.

William Sculley said...

And I would say that there are some things not written in stone in the Bible. For example, what is the proper age for someone to get married?
When should a child be exposed to the Song of Solomon?
What is the proper Canon of Scripture?

These are things you will not find a direct answer to in Scripture. They are traditions. And one of them is a tradition which will change everything about what you believe.

Anonymous said...

JESUS always gives a very direct and specific answer to HIS SHEEP.

"When should a child be exposed to the Song of Solomon?"

In the first few years of life. By the time they are ten years old, they should know it better than most adults in church today know it (so many adults NEVER HEARD OF IT) .

As YHWH says "Raise up a child in the way they should go, and they will not depart from it when they are old".... This is TRUTH (this is NOT a lie).

A child raised as YHWH says will KNOW about when it is okay to be married.
A child raised as YHWH says will not lie, not steal, not divorce, not commit adultery, not commit idolatry, not worship men, not worship other gods, and so on.

Rare?

Obviously.

YHWH'S WAY ? CERTAINLY. ACCORDING TO HIS WORD.

William Sculley said...

@Anon from March 31:

Yes, we should raise a child up in the way they should go. But do we really want 10 year olds to be versed in the most erotic book in the bible? Do you really want to explain to a child the following verses?

This thy stature is like to a palm tree, and thy breasts to clusters of grapes.

I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of the boughs thereof: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples;

And the roof of thy mouth like the best wine for my beloved, that goeth down sweetly, causing the lips of those that are asleep to speak.

Solomon is literally describing foreplay in these verses from chapter 7 of the Song of Solomon. Now tell me, is 10 years old really the age I should be explaining sexual foreplay to my children? There is a reason children didn't read this book until they became marriageable age in ancient Israel. Now I will grant that back then the marriageable age was 13, but it's still much later than 10 years old!

Bible Believer said...

Are children really going to be destroyed reading Song of Solomon, I saw those verses as a Catholic kid, and mostly didn't understand them, I wasn't corrupted. It sounded like kissing but most of the language was beyond me. In a culture where they can walk through a grocery check out and see people making out and sex articles on mainstream magazines, I doubt being exposed to Song of Solomon, is going to do much damage to a child. Thank you for your post Ed Crown too.

William Sculley said...

The question is whether we should be teaching them what sex is. The reality is that we don't just let a kid read Scripture alone. Reading Scripture without guidance is the reason the West is as divided as it is. It is reading Scripture without counsel that leads to the new and innovative "doctrines" that we see causing people to believe lies like the rejection of the Trinity, or in some cases the rejection of Christ's humanity, or the rejection of both.

The Scripture even tells us that in the counsel of many advisors, there is wisdom, while it is the fool who goes off into his own inventions. This is why we must intentionally teach our children. They require our guidance. And we must be humble enough to submit ourselves to the guidance of persons who have been in the Church. That's how the Church was established. Paul had the other Apostles. Timothy had Paul. Ignatius had John. Clement had Paul and Peter.

We should not be teaching our children about sex at young ages. Neither should we be letting them go on their own without guiding them. We should follow the example of the Apostles. The problem is that pride prevents most people from doing that.