Denying Christ’s promise in Matthew 16:18, lack of trust in God.
And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
– Matthew 16:18
“But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” – 1 Timothy 3:15
“I solemnly tell you that whatever you as a Church bind on earth will in Heaven be held as bound, and whatever you loose on earth will in Heaven be held to be loosed.” – Matthew 18:18
“Lo, I am with you always even unto the end of the world.”
– Matthew 28:20
Some try to discredit the Catholic Church by citing its instances of corruption and failure to uphold the truths it teaches. But, they go even further saying the corruption and failure had been so bad, God removed His favor from the established Church and inspired Martin Luther’s Reform.
Based on Scripture alone, one of Luther’s favorite ideas, this belief can be reduced to a lack of trust in God Himself. In Matthew’s Gospel, we find first mention of “the church” when Jesus blesses his apostle, Peter and promises to build His Church- then promises it will be protected from the very powers of hell.
If one understands this Scripture, Jesus by His grace and omnipotence, vows to build the Church, protect it from demonic powers and preserve it. For how long?: “Unto the end of the world.” Jesus says he will be with his people, the church “always” not- “until the 1500’s when your clergy goes corrupt and I get sick of you.”
The Body of Christ like other bodies heals from its injuries. If Jesus stayed with his own apostles despite their sins, ignorance and faults, didn’t he remain with their successors despite their corruption, cruelty and foolishness? Moreover, the entire Church was never corrupt. Indeed throughout history, great, holy people rose up and sparked renewal. In the Old Testament, God said He will spare Sodom if: “ten righteous men are found.” Even during darkest periods such as The Crusades and Inquisition, Catholicism certainly had more than ten righteous men!
God does not abandon his children because they sin. No, He endures with compassion and mercy. The Body of Christ is always going to have tares among the wheat and Jesus Christ, its Head, will suffer those tares for the wheat’s sake.
Those who say God left the Catholic Church for the Reformation forget another important point: breaking something won’t fix it. Now, the Reformation began on noble and honest ideals but actually resulted in so much chaos, infighting and division, Martin Luther himself lamented over it. Soon after Luther’s momentous break from Roman Catholicism, people in his own congregation squabbled and left for any of the various churches that suddenly appeared throughout Europe.
The mark of Christ’s church was, is and always will be unity. This unity endured all the attacks hell could bring against it and that is why Catholicism still stands, not because of powerful bishops, cunning popes or zealous saints. No, it’s here because Christ promised.