While the Catholic Church is indeed WAY "off the mark", there are true, "born-again" people in every denomination, and the following article is in no way intended to diminish their relationship with Messiah. Still, it is most disheartening to realize that Pope John Paul II , on his deathbed, wrote a note relating, "I am totally in your hands" - a note directed to MARY - not Yeshua Mashiyach who died in order to offer us eternal salvation! What a slap in His face! Did MARY die for us? Was she our final SIN OFFERING? Did SHE hold the key to everlasting life? NO! She was a mere human (born into sin, just like the rest of us!) who continued to have children after Yeshua's birth, and thus lost her "virgin" status! And what's more, she's dead, not yet resurrected - so who are the Catholics praying to while bowing down to statues of Mary?
Catholic Church officials insist that Christ built the Catholic Church. However, there is absolutely no Scripture to support this teaching.
Yeshua, was a Torah-keeping, Sabbath-keeping, tallit-wearing, synagogue-attending, kosher Jew who did not come to start a new religion called "Catholicism" or "Christianity"; but, rather, to fulfill the Tanach ("Old Testament") promises and become the LIVING Word of God. As the final SIN OFFERING, He did not come to abolish the Torah, or to nullify God's original commandments in any way. Please see our articles, Original Commandments, Torah explained in simple terms.
Matthew 5: 17 Don't think that I have come to abolish the Torah or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish but to complete. 18 Yes indeed! I tell you that until heaven and earth pass away, not so much as a yud or a stroke will pass from the Torah - not until everything that must happen has happened.
Have heaven and earth passed away? Has "everything that must happen", happened yet?
If Yeshua truly had established the "Catholic Church", then the pope would be keeping the seventh day Sabbath; he would be wearing a tallit during worship, keeping all the Biblical feasts instead of Christmas and Easter, and he would be eating only kosher foods. He would not be paying homage to Miriam (Mary), nor telling people that they have to confess to a priest in order for their sins to be forgiven. Neither would he be telling the millions of followers around the world that Christ built his church on the apostle Peter. The Holy Spirit said through Paul:
Ephesians 2:19-22: 19 So then, you are no longer foreigners and strangers. On the contrary, you are fellow-citizens with God's people and members of God's family. 20 You have built on the foundation of the emissaries and the prophets, with the cornerstone being Yeshua the Messiah himself. 21 In union with him the whole building is held together, and it is growing into a holy temple in union with the Lord. 22 Yes, in union with him, you yourselves are being built together into a spiritual dwelling-place for God!".
Rav Sha'ul (Apostle Paul) wrote to the church at Corinth: 1 Cor. 3:10-11: "Using the grace God gave me, I laid a foundation, like a skilled master-builder; and another man is building on it. But let each one be careful how he builds. 11 For no on can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Yeshua the Messiah."
No, Peter was not the head of the church that Messiah built. Catholics claim that Peter - a married man - was the first pope and, therefore, the head of the church. Matthew 8:14: "Yeshua went to Kefa's (Peter's) home and there saw Kefa's mother-in-law sick in bed with a fever."....Does the Bible tell us the Peter was a pope? And since Catholics do not allow the pope, cardinal, bishop or priest to marry, how could Peter have been the first pope?
Furthermore, the Catholic Church places entirely too much emphasis on the Virgin Mary. Although many Catholics will fight you tooth and nail that Catholics don't worship Mary, they have statues of her, shrines to her, and they pray to her. They treat her as if SHE were the intercessor between God and man. (Please see our article, Why the Virgin Mary can't possibly be our Intercessor.)