Doug Wilson on Roman Catholicism

  1. If the daughter of one of your parishioners desired to marry a committed Roman
    Catholic, would she be marrying “in the Lord?”
    She would be marrying inside the
    covenant. She would also be marrying unwisely and sinfully.
  2. John Calvin recognized a distinction between the individual and the institution;
    would you say that the Roman Catholic Church is a true church? (elaborate).
    the same way that an adulterous husband is a “true” husband, I would say that Rome is
    a “true” church. But in the same way that this same husband is being untrue, I would
    say that Rome is being untrue. Rome is still covenantally bound to Jesus Christ, and
    consequently she needs to stop cheating on Him. And incidentally, to acknowledge that
    a lying, cheating husband is still legally married is not to approve of the lying and
  3. Would you list some areas of deficiency within the Roman Catholic Church? Let me state it more strongly. These are not areas of deficiency—they are areas of
    covenantal rebellion. I would include on this list the idolatry of the Mass, Mariolatry, the
    worship of images, the papacy, their system of works/righteousness, purgatory, and
    much more.

This is strong language, I know, but I found it particularly helpful in dealing with the dilemma that Roman Catholicism is to Protestants. On the one hand, I think it is impossible to say with a former pastor of mine that the RCC is a “false religion.” A false religion knows nothing of Jesus Christ, or faith, or repentance. A false religion can’t sign on to the apostle’s creed, let alone the Nicene creed. yet the RCC happily does all of these and goes on to beckon protestants to return come in out of the rain. At the same time, Roman Catholicism partakes in all these creepy systems that seem to be totally at odds with the glorious lightness of the gospel. What do you call this thing? Covenantal rebellion might just be a good fit.