Skip to comments.Baptist church 'fake pope' sign attracting attention, criticism (Pope Bound for Hell).
Posted on 04/14/2005 12:00:51 PM PDT by Dean Baker
Baptist church 'fake pope' sign attracting attention, criticism By JEANNINE F. HUNTER, firstname.lastname@example.org April 13, 2005
NEWPORT, Tenn. - Two days after being posted, a church marquee message that questions the purpose of the papacy is still attracting attention in this small community.
"What I am trying to do is to let people know there's only one way to heaven through Jesus Christ," said the Rev. Cline Franklin, pastor of Hilltop Baptist Church. "There's no need for help. God sent his son, Jesus Christ. We're all priests if we're saved. I don't need to go to anybody else to pray."
The sign's side facing Broadway, the main thoroughfare in Newport, reads, "No truth, No hope Following a hell-bound pope!" On the other side, facing the church parking lot, it reads: "False hope in a fake pope."
The message appeared days after Pope John Paul II's funeral last week.
"It is unfortunate when it comes from within the Christian church. It's really sad," said the Rev. Dan Whitman, 54, pastor of Newport's Good Shepherd Catholic parish and Holy Trinity parish in Jefferson City. "You learn how to deal with it and pray not to be that way yourself."
It does not reflect mainstream Baptist thought, said Dr. Merrill "Mel" Hawkins, associate professor of religion and director of the Center for Baptist Studies at Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City.
"When you see signs like that, they are almost like relics or artifacts of a bygone era," Hawkins said.
He spoke about animus between Protestants and Catholics persisting after the Protestant Reformation and for centuries, during which "harsh things were said, couched within misperceptions, misunderstandings."
Among the major misperceptions is that Catholics "venerate the pope on the same level as Jesus," Hawkins said, and that "the pope is connected to their salvation in place of Jesus Christ."
Catholics make up about 12 percent of the population in the South.
"Catholics are a minority faith in the South, and there's often bias toward minority religious communities because people don't understand," he said.
James Gaddis, a lay speaker who also chairs the board at First United Methodist Church, said he had not seen the sign but had heard about it.
"I understand that it's very degrading," he said. "I think it's tragic that any church group would stoop to this posture."
Following Tuesday night's council meeting, Newport Mayor Roland Dykes Jr. said he was a little saddened by the message.
"It doesn't behoove any of us to determine who is going to heaven or hell. I think the pope is a highly, highly respected person," he said.
Franklin's church is a five-year-old independent Baptist church. When asked what the message meant, he said: "What does 'pope' mean? It means father. We have a heavenly father, and the Bible says we shall call no man a father. "
He said people have been driving by or taking pictures or calling to share their views. He said the intent was not to offend Catholics and people are misunderstanding the sign.
Copyright 2005, Knoxville News-Sentinel Co.
As a born again Christian, I do not consider Catholics and other 'religious people' "bound for hell" because it's not up to me to make such a judgment which Jesus Himself cautioned us against.
Rev. Franklin is wrong to do what he has done.
>> He's a "Bible Believing" pastor. When I come to him with a question about faith, his answer ALWAYS is... "Read Matthew, or look in the Psalms..." THEN he says what he thinks. He constantly turns me back to the Bible, again and again. <<
Sure. And if you ask him whether we are saved by faith or by works, I bet he will point you Romans. But will he point you to James?
"It is through Faith, not Works, by which he was saved."
-- St. Paul.
"Faith, without Works is dead"
-- St. James.
Many, many years ago, Catholics settled these debates among themselves. So they quit trading scripture verses, and instead cited the councils where they came to a consensus about such quabbles. That doesn't mean that Catholic beliefs are not based on scripture.
That said, would any Catholics or other 'religious people' tell me where they believe born again Baptists are bound for? (Just curious :-)
The Koran is very slick. It has some wonderful poetry in it.
It also says some things that are true. And then it say things that are 99% true when compared to other scriptures --- and that is where you can be caught.
wel, the ones I know are bound for glory
Been away for a while. Indeed, the Catholic doctrine of the superiority of tradition DOES make the scriptures irrelevant. I suppose that is one of the reasons they are instructed (generally) to not read the Bible for themselves.
That's interesting because I've lived in a very Catholic area my entire life, and I've heard quite a few Catholics share that opinion.
More than likely he would use as many passages as possible, for as long as necessary, until I got the point.
You understand this is a teaching moment with me and my father-in-law. This isn't he as a pastor preaching from the pulpit. He's retired, and I never heard him preach in front of a congregation.
I have no opinion upon whether or not the Catholic way of worship is right or wrong. That is God's decision, not mine. I wouldn't propose to speak for Him. Especially because I didn't attend seminary, or have the opportunity to become pastor or priest.
I never said they did. I was making only a linguistic point, that the Hebrew elohim and the Arabic allah share the same Semitic root (aleph-lamed-heh).
When the Hebrew Bible is translated into Arabic (by Jews or Christians in Arabic-speaking countries), the word "Elohim" is translated as "Allah."
Thanks for the reply. I've been told because I'm not Catholic I'm not part of the "true Church," which sounds pretty bad. So I was wondering where people think I might end up.
I am sorry, but your brush is awfully broad.
It's broad because of what is coming. And the heartbreaking part of all of it is I can't warn enough and I can't get past the generations of that Mystery of Iniquity that has been drilled into everyone. Even me, I have had to undo so much that my mind will still try to take me back to...the false teachings...the doctrines of devils that we were WARNED about and told to watch for.
The urgency comes with what happened to me about 2 1/2 weeks ago.
I'm not a flake, I've been on Free Republic I think forever...lol.
One of the biggest things that people who meet me or know me is...that I am upbeat, I laugh all the time, I'm just a happy person, I raise and play with my horses, I have 4 grand kids and life is just GOOD. I make friends easily...don't know a stranger, no matter where I go. I like people...even the nasty ones....:)
Anyway...it was a Tuesday and I got up to go to work....usual day....I couldn't. I just couldn't, God literally laid me out in the livingroom floor on my face and I cried all day...I sobbed. I think I have been a fairly good person..and of course I know that is not what it is all about...it's not about my goodness. He let me see myself as He has seen me...then He let me feel what it would be like if He wasn't there...and I became nothing, completely torn with a feeling of emptyness I don't think could ever be described. He showed me what the unsaved will feel and just enough for me to bear it and it was horrible. He showed me, how completely worthless, empty and lost,I could be without HIM. I mean I repented like I have never repented in my LIFE....and I thought I had done a pretty thorough job of repenting. Nope...I have never repented where I felt like everything had been ripped from me, not like that. And then there was just a peace, a calmness, a lovingness and I wasn't afraid anymore.
It put such a sense of urgency in me for others, I know that wasn't just for me. He has shown me to much in the past that I have been made to share or foretell.....boy howdy do the attacks begin, but He has always finished what He has told me to give, whether I liked it or not.
I don't attack people!!! I attack false doctrine and that which will cost them their souls.
What makes me so special? I'm not....but HIS is the only voice I will listen to.....all else is vanity. He told me as a child, sleeping in the woods, hiding from a terrible homelife...that He would never leave me nor forsake me.
I didn't come to know Him in a building, I came to know Him talking to Him in the scary woods, cold, afraid, and He was there, He has never left.
I'm sorry... I didn'trealize "He" was your father... I thought you know this pastor.
But you get my point that even a "bible-believing" pastor cannot help but to select the passages which make his point, and disregard the passages that don't. It's unavoidable, since people can't possibly know the fullness of others' arguments.
You have no idea how we Catholics roll our eyes at "bible-believing." As if we Catholics weren't bible-believing? Do you understand my point as to why Catholics don't simply cite chapter and verse?
Isn't lying a sin for Baptists? Just curious.
First of all, please understand that I don't blast the Baptists and other low church types unless they blast us Catholic types first.
We believe that there can be one and only one baptism, anything beyond that is just dunking. It's a doctrinal disagreement. Nothing wrong with that. If one wanted to adopt the same hateful mindset of those that would say that gentle John Paul II is going to hell, one could say that additional baptisms mock the sacrament.
Likewise we say that the Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist is the Transubstantiation of the bread and wine into Christ's Own Body and Blood. To have open communion, to send out little cups of grape juice instead of one bread, one cup, to deny the transubstantiation, all could be regarded as heretical behavior.
Again, I don't mind. I find Baptists to be enthusiastic, serious believers, and I think they are much needed members of the Body of Christ. I don't agree with certain individuals when they say the Pope is going to hell any more than I agree with Mel Gibson when he says his wife is going to hell (even though she is a saint) because she is an Episcopalian, as am I.
The point is we are all going to have to hang together now or we are most certainly going to hang separately, figuratively speaking, I hope.
I'd like to ask this guy why he thinks it's important for him to be a preacher, if we truly don't need to go to anybody else except Jesus.
Catholics are instructed to read the Bible. INTERPRETING it for themselves without knowing the context of Catholic belief is what gets people confused -- see all the different Protestant interpretations as evidence.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.