BAD BIBLE ARGUMENTS FOR PURGATORY

Catholicism says that your final destiny is to be with God in Heaven or away from God in Hell forever.  Some die and have leanings towards sin or venial sins and need to go to Purgatory for purification of their relationship with God so they can go then to Heaven.

Every Catholic argument from the Bible in favour of Purgatory is a hoax.

The Second Book of Maccabees, 12, which Rome has illicitly added to the real Bible, says that it is a holy thing to pray for the dead that they be released from sins. It could be a holy thought to do that but lots of wrong actions are holy if they are sincerely believed in. Notice that the chapter evaluates the action from Judas’ perspective and not objectively. It says he did well for he did it because of his expectation of the resurrection and that it was a holy thing to do when he believed it would get the dead rewarded at the resurrection. It is saying that he did right in his heart but not that he was right.

Catholics pray to get souls of out of Purgatory but Maccabees says Judas prayed for the dead because of the resurrection. Praying to get the sins of the dead forgotten about is not the same as praying for their sufferings in Purgatory to be reduced. The dead might not be punished at the resurrection but they might have fewer rewards then and the purpose of the sacrificing was to win them more blessings.

The book says that it is bad to pray for the dead if the resurrection is not believed in. The Catholic would have to say that the dead ought to be prayed for even if there is no resurrection because there is a Purgatory. And people don’t need to be resurrected to survive death.

When the book says that the dead must be prayed for to atone for their sins and sacrifices may be bought for that purpose just because they will rise again it is obvious that the resurrection is considered to be their only chance of survival. Therefore the chapter denies the existence of Purgatory which is the habitation of disembodied souls.

The sin of the dead that Judas tried to atone for was idolatry which is considered to be serious sin in the Bible. The Catholic Church says that all who die in it go to Hell forever and you cannot pray anybody out of that place. The chapter contradicts the Catholic doctrine that Hell is not Purgatory. The chapter is heretical if it says that sacrifice can atone for the sins of the dead which would contradict the Christian doctrine that killing animals cannot remove sin (Hebrews 10:4). The Bible says that Jesus died for our sins not some of them or parts of them.

It seems that the key clauses in the text have not been translated right. There is reason to believe that instead of the book saying that sacrifices were paid for to be offered in atonement for the sins of the dead it says that the sacrifices were paid for to be offered because of sins which would change the meaning of the passage to make it say that the sacrifices were offered because of the sins of the surviving soldiers (page 9, Purgatory). Perhaps the sacrifices were offered as an apology to God for the sins and were not intended to bring any benefit to the dead?

In Matthew 5:25, Jesus says the sinner is in prison until he or she pays the last penny. This is thought to speak of Purgatory. But the word until is often used non-literally in the Bible. God says in Isaiah 46:4 that he will exist until the House of Jacob grows old. He does not mean that he will annihilate himself when that happens. But you could go to Hell forever until you pay the last penny. In that case, you will never get out for you will never pay the last penny.

Paul is alleged by the Church to have spoken of Purgatory at 1 Corinthians 3:13-15. But Protestants assume this fire tests a person’s work while Purgatory does not. Purgatory purifies a person. And nobody can do a good work there for only suffering and the prayers of others can get them out. It is not about testing works at all so Paul’s words do not back up Purgatory. Catholics reply that you cannot try the work without trying the person doing the work. The fire tests everybody and not just those who go to Purgatory. Moreover, the fire tests the good man’s work as well as the sinful man’s – it tests everybody’s while Catholics deny that all will go to Purgatory. The good man’s work will get a reward while the evil man will be saved by fire in their philosophy. The Church says that the souls in Purgatory are not saved by fire for they are already saved for they cannot lose God and are destined for Heaven. Paul refers to the Day of Judgment when there could be no Purgatory.

In Second Peter 3, Jesus seemingly preached to the dead who had lived in Noah’s day. This does not refer to Purgatory but just to Jesus preaching to people who are now dead. Some speculate that it is about the Limbus Patrem where the holy people born and dead before Jesus stayed until he opened Heaven. Nothing is said about these people paying for sins or even repenting at Jesus’ preaching. And it is possible that it is believed that the author is claiming that Jesus before he was born appeared in spirit to the people living in Noah’s day and not the dead at all.
 
DOES JESUS SAY SINS CAN BE PARDONED IN AFTERLIFE?

“Whoever says a bad word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come”. What a scary text! Church father and Pope, Gregory the Great concluded that “From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come” (Dialogues 4, 39).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (1030-1032) claims that when Jesus said that there is a sin that will not be pardoned in this world or in the world to come that there must be sin that is pardoned in the afterlife (Matthew 12:32). So, they argue that this refers to sin that is forgiven in Purgatory for there is no pardon in Hell and no sin in Heaven to be pardoned in it. But Jesus’ words do not imply any such idea for he only said that there was sin that would not be forgiven in this world or the next meaning Hell. To say there is a cat in the kitchen is not to imply that there is a dog in the hall.

If you tell somebody that you will never forgive them in this world or in the next it is just a poetic way of saying you will never forgive. It does not imply you necessarily think there is a life after death. It does not imply that you think there is forgiveness in the next life.

And what sin would Jesus be thinking of as forgiveable in the afterlife if we think the Catholics are right about the text? Clearly he would then be saying, those who insult Jesus will be forgiven in this life or the next but those who insult the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven in either state. Thus you can be damned even in this life though you may feel you are for Heaven! The Holy Spirit's job is to connect you to God so being in a false religion that is far from the truth about love and God is blaspheming the Holy Spirit in the sense of following religion instead of God.

Anyway if the text backs up Purgatory as Catholics want to think, could it mean that those who insult the Holy Spirit will be in Purgatory forever? Why not? You can be in rehab for years even if nobody thinks it is working! So why not forever?

BAD BIBLE ANTI-PURGATORY ARGUMENTS

Here are some bad disproofs of Purgatory.

Isaiah 1:18 says that God will make scarlet sins as white as snow. That is sometimes quoted to disprove Purgatory but perhaps God does the bleaching job in Purgatory? Against this it is said that Isaiah’s readers would have understood it to refer to purification in this life so that is what it means. The immediate readership determines the intended interpretation.

Ecclesiastes 12:7 says that the spirit goes back to God after death.

But the spirit could go back through Purgatory. When a child goes back to the shop after school it does not mean that she will not stop at the chapel on the way.

Spirit here means breath so there is nothing metaphysical in this verse.

Abraham's bosom refers to the afterlife in Jewish tradition but not to a Purgatory.  Some Catholics lie that it means Purgatory.  Jesus did not say Lazarus was in Abraham’s bosom immediately after death (Luke 16:22).  He speaks as if he is staying there forever.  Lazarus is comforted there Jesus says.  That is not purification.

1 John 1:7,9 says that the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. This does not refute Purgatory for it is about cleansing us from all past and present sin. We could be without sin but just need some discipline in Purgatory. But this verse certainly refutes the Catholic doctrine that Purgatory is primarily about punishing us for sin and we have to be punished there to be free.

In Ephesians 3:15 we read that all families in Heaven and on earth take their names from the Father. Purgatory is not mentioned and this is thought to prove that there is no such place. Unlike Hell where there is no love, there should be families in Purgatory unless each person is in solitary confinement. So it might not disprove Purgatory at all.

Revelation 14:13 says that the dead who die in the Lord are blessed for their works follow them. That could be referring to those who have no need of Purgatory. If Purgatory was a nuclear blast of pain that lasts only say a minute this verse could still be true.

Purgatory is a Catholic invention and is against the Bible.

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HEAVEN AND HELL Dudley Fifield, Christadelphian Publishing Office, Birmingham
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LIFE IN CHRIST, PART 3, Fergal McGrath SJ, MH Gill and Son Ltd, Dublin, 1960
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