Gendron says Roman Catholics should heed their first claimed pontiff

Artist portrayal of the Apostle Peter preaching


Former Roman Catholic Mike Gendron had the following in his newsletter:

Catholics Should Believe Their First Pope

Roman Catholics believe Peter was their first pope, but to their peril, they do not believe what he taught. Peter did play a prominent role in the early church, but he always knew the church had only One Head (Eph. 5:23). That exalted position was reserved for the Lord Jesus Christ, who promised to build His church after He purchased it with His own blood (Mat. 16:18; Acts 20:28).
Soon after Peter abandoned his career as a fisherman to follow Christ, he became a fisher of men. Several of his sermons were recorded in the Book of Acts, and his doctrinal teachings were recorded in his two epistles. For the purpose of challenging Roman Catholics to examine their faith, I have asked Peter some questions. All of his answers come from his writings and sermons. It is my prayer that Catholics will believe what Peter taught regarding theology, ecclesiology, and soteriology and repent from any of their religious teachings and traditions that oppose the infallible Word of God.

Peter, were you the first pope and supreme head of the church? “As your fellow elder”, I exhort you to “shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock” (1 Peter 5:1-3).Were you infallible? The Lord Jesus rebuked me as a mouthpiece of Satan because I had not set my mind on the interests of God (Mat. 16:23). Paul opposed me to my face, saying I stood condemned, because I was not straightforward about the truth of the Gospel (Galatians 2:11-14). As a man, I was fallible, however, my two epistles contain the infallible Word of God because they were divinely inspired (2 Tim. 3:16).

Should we confess our sins to priests? I instructed Simon the Sorcerer to repent of his wickedness and pray to God that his sins may be forgiven (Acts 8:22).

Should we pray to Mary and the saints? I said to pray to God (Acts 8:22). When I was in danger I prayed to God, “Lord save me” (Mat. 14:30).

Can anyone be saved apart from Jesus Christ? “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

What would you say to Pope Francis, who teaches that atheists can follow their conscience into heaven? “There will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction” (2 Pet. 2:1).

Is Mary another sinless mediator? Peter said, “The ignorant and unstable twist Paul’s letters to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures” (2 Peter 3:16). Catholics who believe Mary is another mediator have twisted Paul’s irrefutable declaration that Christ is only one mediator between God and man (1 Tim. 2:5).

Can anyone have assurance of eternal life? God has caused believers to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven and protected by the power of God through faith (1 Pet. 1:3-5).

Can indulgences be purchased for the remission of sins? God redeems us “not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ” (1 Pet. 1:18-19). …

Should Jesus Christ be made a sin offering every day during the sacrifice of the Mass? Christ died “for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God” (1 Pet. 3:18).

Is the Catholic priesthood necessary to offer sacrifices to God? Every believer has been called out of darkness into Christ’s marvelous light to be part of the royal priesthood for the purpose of proclaiming His excellencies (1 Pet. 2:9).

Are you the rock upon which Jesus would build His church? My confession of faith in Jesus as the Christ and the Son of God is how the the Lord’s church is built (Mat. 16:18). All believers, who have the same God-given faith, are living stones that make up the church. The Lord Jesus is “the chief cornerstone” and “a rock of offense” (1 Peter 2:4-8). The foundation of any building is anchored by the cornerstone.

Should Jesus be portrayed as a dead man hanging on a cross or a baby in Mary’s arms? The resurrected Christ has ascended into heaven and is at the right hand of God (1 Pet. 3:21-22).

What should we do in these days of great deception? Take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Pet 3:17-18).

There is a profound contrast between the teachings of Peter and the opinions of Pope Francis. The enormous disparity between the teachings of these two men is a strong indictment of how far the Roman Catholic Church has departed from the faith of the apostles into apostasy. Just as Catholics must choose between trusting Christ and His Word or the teachings and traditions of their religion, they must also choose between trusting the teachings of Peter and the teachings of Francis. It is impossible to believe two opposing authorities.

Let me add that there were NO popes in the first century and even Roman Catholic scholars admit that calling the Bishop of Rome, Pope, did not gain traction until the late fourth century.

Most who claim some tie to Roman Catholicism do not realize how much that church has changed. An article that documents this in great detail is available: Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God?

The Apostle Peter actually held to Church of God doctrines, and not various ones now embraced by the Church of Rome. Nor did Peter hold to many doctrines that Protestants like Mike Gendron now hold to. For details, check out the free online book: Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differs from Protestantism.

Peter, like the Apostle John, kept biblical holidays.

Peter, also, did not observe Christmas or Easter.

Peter did not wear a cross.

As far as ‘apostolic succession’ goes, notice the following definition from a Roman Catholic priest and scholar:

Apostolic Succession...In its strict sense, apostolic succession refers to the doctrine by which the validity and authority of the Christian ministry is derived from the Apostles…In its broader sense, apostolic succession refers to the relationship between the Christian church today and the apostolic church of New Testament times. Thus, apostolic succession refers to the whole church insofar as it is faithful to the word, the witness, and the service of the apostolic communities. Understood in this way, the church is not simply a collectivity of individual churches; instead, it is a communion of churches whose validity is derived from the apostolic message that it professes and from the apostolic witness that it lives (McBrien R.P. Apostolic Succession. 12/09/06).

In other words, according to the above priest, apostolic succession is actually related to the acceptance of the succession of biblical truth, as taught by the original apostles–spiritual apostolic succession is the most important factor to consider when it comes to the subject of apostolic succession (though the ‘laying on of hands’ is also a factor).

Jesus said:

23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. (John 4:23-24)

True successors of Jesus’ disciples would worship God in spirit and truth–“the faith once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). Yet, the Church of Rome has made many changes, including many that disagree with positions held by many it considers to be early ‘saints.’

I would add that it is not just Roman Catholics that made changes that disagree with the views of the original apostles.

Some details are in the free online booklets Continuing History of the Church of God and Where is the True Christian Church Today?

Some items to assist in your studies may include:

Apostolic Succession What really happened? Did structure and beliefs change? Are many of the widely-held current understandings of this even possible? Did you know that Catholic scholars really do not believe that several of the claimed “apostolic sees” of the Orthodox have apostolic succession–despite the fact that the current pontiff himself seems to wish to ignore this view? Is there actually a true church that has ties to any of the apostles that is not part of the Catholic or Orthodox churches? Read this article if you truly are interested in the truth on this matter! Here is a link to a sermon: Claims of Apostolic Succession. Here is a related article in the Spanish language La sucesión apostólica. ¿Ocurrió en Roma, Alejandría, Constantinopla, Antioquía, Jerusalén o Asia Menor?
Beliefs of the Original Catholic Church Did the original “catholic church” have doctrines held by the Continuing Church of God? Did Church of God leaders uses the term “catholic church” to ever describe the church they were part of? Here are links to related sermons: Original Catholic Church of God?, Original Catholic Doctrine: Creed, Liturgy, Baptism, Passover, and What Type of Catholic was Polycarp of Smyrna?, Tradition, Holy Days, Salvation, Dress, & Celibacy, and Early Heresies and Heretics, and Doctrines: 3 Days, Abortion, Ecumenism, Meats, Tithes, Crosses, Destiny, and more, and Saturday or Sunday?, The Godhead, Apostolic Laying on of Hands Succession, Church in the Wilderness Apostolic Succession List, and Holy Mother Church and Heresies.
Early Church History: Who Were the Two Major Groups that Professed Christ in the Second and Third Centuries? Did you know that many in the second and third centuries felt that there were two major, and separate, professing Christian groups in the second century, but that those in the majority churches tend to now blend the groups together and claim “saints” from both? “Saints” that condemn some of their current beliefs. Who are the two groups? A related sermon is also available Christianity: Two groups.
Laying on of Hands This is an elementary principle of Hebrews 6. Have you properly had hands laid upon you? Here is a link to a related sermon: Laying on of Hands and Succession.
Laying on of Hands Succession and List Does the Church of God have laying on of hands succession? Does the Continuing Church of God have a list of leaders from the time of the apostles? Here is a link to a related sermon: Apostolic Laying on of Hands Succession.

Was Peter the Rock Who Alone Received the Keys of the Kingdom? How should Matthew 16:18-19 be understood? Here is a link to a related sermon: Peter, the Rock, and the Keys.
The Apostle Peter He was an original apostle and early Christian leader. Where was Peter buried? Where did Peter die?
Should You Keep God’s Holy Days or Demonic Holidays? This is a free pdf booklet explaining what the Bible and history shows about God’s Holy Days and popular holidays. A related sermon is Which Spring Days should Christians observe?
What Do Roman Catholic Scholars Actually Teach About Early Church History? Although most believe that the Roman Catholic Church history teaches an unbroken line of succession of bishops beginning with Peter, with stories about most of them, Roman Catholic scholars know the truth of this matter. Is telling the truth about the early church citing Catholic accepted sources anti-Catholic? This eye-opening article is a must-read for any who really wants to know what Roman Catholic history actually admits about the early church. There is also a YouTube sermon on the subject titled Church of God or Church of Rome: What Do Catholic Scholars Admit About Early Church History?
Nazarene Christianity: Were the Original Christians Nazarenes? Who were the Nazarene Christians? What did they believe? Should 21st century Christians be modern Nazarenes? Is there a group that exists now that traces its history through the Nazarenes and holds the same beliefs today? Here is a link to a related video sermon Nazarene Christians: Were the early Christians “Nazarenes”?
Location of the Early Church: Another Look at Ephesus, Smyrna, and Rome What actually happened to the primitive Church? And did the Bible tell about this in advance?
Laying on of Hands This is an elementary principle of Hebrews 6. Have you properly had hands laid upon you? Here is a link to a related sermon: Laying on of Hands and Succession.
What Was the Original Apostles’ Creed? What is the Nicene Creed? Did the original apostles write a creed? When was the first creed written? Are the creeds commonly used by the Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholics original?
What is the Origin of the Cross as a ‘Christian’ Symbol? Was the cross used as a venerated symbol by the early Church? A related YouTube video would be Origin of the Cross.
Do You Practice Mithraism? Many practices and doctrines that mainstream so-called Christian groups have are the same or similar to those of the sun-god Mithras. December 25th was celebrated as his birthday. Do you follow Mithraism combined with the Bible or original Christianity?
Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy? Pope Francis has taken many steps to turn people more towards his version of ‘Mary.’ Could this be consistent with biblical and Catholic prophecies? This article documents what has been happening. There is also a video version titled Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy?
Feast of the Immaculate Conception? Did early Christians teach Mary had an immaculate conception and led a sinless life?
Origin of the Marian Dogmas: Where Do Catholic Scholars Say The Four Dogmas of Mary Came From?
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions.
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God Differs from Protestantism The CCOG is NOT Protestant. This free online book explains how the real Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants. Several sermons related to the free book are also available: Protestant, Baptist, and CCOG History; The First Protestant, God’s Command, Grace, & Character; The New Testament, Martin Luther, and the Canon; Eucharist, Passover, and Easter; Views of Jews, Lost Tribes, Warfare, & Baptism; Scripture vs. Tradition, Sabbath vs. Sunday; Church Services, Sunday, Heaven, and God’s Plan; Seventh Day Baptists/Adventists/Messianics: Protestant or COG?; Millennial Kingdom of God and God’s Plan of Salvation; Crosses, Trees, Tithes, and Unclean Meats; The Godhead and the Trinity; Fleeing or Rapture?; and Ecumenism, Rome, and CCOG Differences.
Continuing Church of God The group striving to be most faithful amongst all real Christian groups to the word of God.
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, French: L Histoire Continue de l Église de Dieu and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
The History of Early Christianity Are you aware that what most people believe is not what truly happened to the true Christian church? Do you know where the early church was based? Do you know what were the doctrines of the early church? Is your faith really based upon the truth or compromise?

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