"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.V No.VII Pg.10-11
February 1943

The True Status Of The Roman Catholic Church

G. K. Wallace


Since the title of this article calls for facts rather than rhetoric, I shall proceed at once to prove that the Roman Catholic Church is not the true apostolic church but that she is the greatest of all sects.

1. The word Roman indicates that she is a sect and not the ancient and apostolic church. That Jesus Christ established a church is not doubted. That it was and is the universal and ancient apostolic church is not questioned. To prove that the church of our Lord is the Roman Catholic Church is not within the power of man. The word Rome shows that it was born in Rome and not from above. The word Roman means something local and particular. Catholic means universal. How could there be such a thing as a local universal church?

Bishop Purcell said, "Catholic is the name of our Church and we only prefix the word Roman to signify that she is in communion with the see of Rome." That does not help matters in the least. Our communion is to be with the mother of us all. "But the Jerusalem that is above is free, which is our mother." There is no such thing as a mistress of all churches found in the Bible. The Church of Christ has no queen to reign over her. We have no see (seat of episcopal power) on earth. We have no pope (papa-father) on earth. God is our father and He is in heaven. The term Roman Catholic is a contradiction. That is just the same as saying "local universal." How could a church be both?

2. The word Catholic does not appear in the New Testament. There is no more authority for using it than for the word Mormon, Methodist or Baptist. Mr. Purcell asked, "Is not the epistle of James called Catholic?" I reply, no, it is not called Catholic by any New Testament writer.

3. There is not one thing peculiar to the Roman Catholic Church that can be found in the New Testament.

The question now is simply a matter of church identity. Now see if you can find a single one of the following Roman dogmas in the New Testament. They cannot be found anywhere either in the Old or New Testament. This argument outweighs volumes produced by the Catholic Church. Put all the folios and authorities they bring up against the Word of God, and they will be found as light as the chaff of the summer threshing floor. Study carefully the following chart:

Roman Catholic Church

  • Pope
  • Cardinals
  • Patriarchs
  • Primates
  • Archbishops
  • Archdeacons
  • Monks
  • Friars
  • Nuns
  • Image worship
  • Relics
  • Invocation of dead
  • Veneration of Mary
  • Purgatory
  • Transubstantiation
  • Easter and Lent

Church Of Christ

  • Christ
  • God
  • Holy Spirit

  • Elders, pastors
  • Deacons, ministers, servants

  • Apostles
  • Prophets
  • Teachers
  • Evangelists
  • Faith, repentance, confession, baptism
  • Sing, pray, give, Lord's Supper
  • Teach
  • Heaven and Hell Extreme Unction

Not one of the offices enumerated as belonging to the Roman Catholic Church was known in the days of the apostles. Not one can be found in the New Testament. May I now ask: How, then, can we suppose that the Roman Catholic Church with all these appendages, is the apostolic church? The Roman Catholic Church is not the primitive, universal institution of Christ. There is not one point or doctrine peculiar to the Catholic Church to be found in the Bible. It is a sect in the true import of the word. It is an apostate Body from the Church of Christ.

But someone now asks: When did the Roman Catholic have its beginning? I reply by saying that is not my problem. You name the day of her birth. She is not my daughter. I do not have to show when the Roman Catholic Church started. I know it did not start with Christ and the apostles. You can find the Roman Catholic Church in history but not in the Bible. This is the point. Drive them to the wall and press the point. There is not one thing peculiar to Catholicism in either the Old or New Testament.


The counter argument made by Catholics to the question of church identity is to deny our right to use the Bible. They say we have no right to quote it as authority. In fact, they say we do not even know that we have a Bible except as we are told by them. This, then, brings up our second proposition.

Is the Catholic Church responsible for giving us the Bible or is our possession of it in spite of her effort to keep the Bible in an ancient and dead language?

This subject then is simply this: Catholics and the Bible. As stated, the Catholic objects to us using the Bible as authority in matters religious. He is loud in his claim that only the "Catholic Church" is authority and that the Bible is authority only in the hands of Catholic priests. The following propositions are by them asserted:

1. No New Testament book proves its own authenticity. No man even knows that he has a Bible except as told to him by the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church says which book is authentic and which book is not.

2. The world can have no Bible independent of the Catholic Church.

3. The Scriptures must be officially interpreted by the Roman Church before any man knows what they mean.

4. The Catholic Church and not the Bible is authority in religion. That the Pope is the vicar of Christ on earth and his decisions are infallible.

Now let us examine these claims one by one. If they are true they ought to be accepted. If they are not true the Catholic Church has nothing on which to stand.

First: Do the Scriptures assert their own authenticity? Do they assert their own inspiration?

That the scriptures are inspired is not doubted by anyone who believes them. But are they inspired of God or of the Catholic Church? Paul says that they are inspired of God. "Every scripture inspired of God is also profitable for teaching." (II Tim. 3:16.) The marginal reading is, "Every scripture is inspired of God." Notice what the text says: "Inspired of God" not the Pope of Rome. "Inspired of God" and not the Catholic Church. Peter says that what Paul wrote was scripture. (II Pet. 3:16.) He said men wrest Paul's writings as they "do the other scriptures." How are these scriptures inspired? Not by the Pope but by Jehovah.

There was no Pope in Rome until 600 A.D. Were all scriptures uninspired for over five hundred years? Too, the Pope was not declared to be infallible until 1870--just seventy-three years ago. Think of a group of fallible men voting one of their number to be infallible. God did not say the Pope is infallible. He was declared so to be by a group of men who were fallible. Since these men who voted the Pope to be infallible were fallible subject to mistakes--how do even Catholics know that these fallible men did not make a mistake when they thus voted? Surely a man is prepared to believe anything, who can believe that the Pope is infallible. But fallible man, the Pope, could not and cannot have anything to do with the inspiration of the scriptures.

The message Paul spake did not come from man. "For I make known unto you brethren, as touching the gospel which was preached by me, that it is not after man. For neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came to me through revelation of Jesus Christ." (Gal. 1:11-12.) Again Paul says the things I write "are the commandments of God." (I Cor. 14:37.) Paul got his message by "revelation" and God "commanded" him. Yet the Catholic Church has the effrontery to say that his message was not inspired until the Pope of Rome so declared it. If a person knew no more about the Catholic Church than this one point, namely: that it claims to pass on the Word of God and that even God's commandments given through Paul are not inspired until the Pope passes on them, he knows enough to know that the Pope is the lawless one spoken of in First Thessalonians as the person who "opposeth and exalteth himself against all that is called God or that is worshipped; so that he sitteth in the temple of God, setting himself forth as God." The Pope is called by devout Catholics, "Father and Lord God the Pope." There are two men in the world that claim to be God. One is the Pope of Rome and the other is a big (man) in New York. One claims to be "Lord God the Pope" and the other "Father Divine" as "Papa" the Pope. Both are impostors and deceivers.

John wrote that we might believe. (Jno. 20:30-31.) What he wrote was true. (Jno. 21:24.) How dare some man, the Pope, say that this was not inspired until he so declared it. What John wrote is the truth even if no one had ever heard of the Pope. It was the Word of God when John wrote it and John wrote it hundreds of years before there ever was a Pope.

The Apostle Peter was an eyewitness of what he wrote. "For we did not follow cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.... And that voice we ourselves heard borne out of heaven, when we were with Him in the holy mount." (II Pet. 1:16-17.) Peter saw and heard what he wrote--heard the voice from heaven. Yet Catholics say no scriptures assert they are inspired. Paul says "all" he wrote came by "revelation." Peter saw and heard what he wrote. Thus all that Peter and Paul wrote are thus by them declared to be inspired. Now whom will you believe? Paul and Peter, or the priests of the Roman Catholic Church? As for me I will take what Peter and Paul have to say and challenge every Catholic priest on earth to come out from behind his "petty-coat" and deny what I teach in public debate.

Jesus plainly says that the apostles would speak by inspiration. (Matt. 10:20.) "It shall not be you that speak, but the spirit of your Father that speaketh in you." That settles it. What they spake and wrote came from God. That is not nearly it. That is it--all of it. To deny that the scriptures were not inspired until the Pope declared them to be, is to deny the plain Word of God.

All the books of the New Testament were written before the close of the first century. Every writer sealed his book or books by the blood of his martyrdom, except John. John died a natural death. But the point is this: these books--all of them were written in the first century, and yet the Catholics say they were not inspired until some time in the fourth century. That in the fourth century the Pope of Rome declared them to be inspired. Now, look and listen--there was no Pope until the year 600 A.D. Yet they claim the Pope declared these books to be inspired nearly two hundred years before there was a Pope. When Catholics make such claims they hope and pray that you will not stop to read and investigate. They are afraid of honest investigation of their claims on the polemic platform. They thrive better in the dark. "Men love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil." Where is the Catholic priest that will come out on the platform and discuss these things?