Do you mean "following" in the sense that they accompanied him, or that he somehow was their spiritual teacher/leader? Because I have a hard time finding the latter in the Scriptures.That may very well be true for Abraham personally but what of all the other Israelites following him?
Was Noah an exception? Enoch? The rest of the patriarchs? Rahab, who was not even an Israelite? Please select just anyone listed among the believers in Hebrews ch. 11 and show to me that they were guided to and in Christ by means of a hierarchical church.I don't think you can use exceptions to base the life of faith on.
I cannot think of a single reason why I would need the church, apart from being the fellowship of believers. The church is not my savior—Christ is. And I certainly do not need the Catholic "church".To reiterate, we need the Church. Jesus established the Church because he knew it would be a means of grace for us as well as provide Christians with the orthodoxy and orthopraxy they need to live like him.
That was a good one. I have been called many things throughout the years, but this must be the first time anyone has claimed that my life is "parasitic on the church". I deviate from the doctrines of the Roman Catholic church in virtually every way. Off the top of my head, I reject:What you say is true - you can spread the Gospel, etc. - but your life as a Christian is totally parasitic (meant in the sense of "living off") on the Church. Everything you take for granted as a Christian: the doctrines, texts, ways of praying, etc. all came to you through the Church.
Original guilt (and the idea that this guilt is removed in baptism)
That grace is somehow "communicated" through the "sacraments"
The notion of a conscious intermediate state
Intercession of the saints
The notion of a subset of believers being "saints" (every child of God is holy before Him)
Inherent immortality of the soul
Hell (in the "traditional" notion of an eternal place of torture)
Everything related to clericalism, i.e., the idea that there is a priesthood separate from the "common" priesthood of the believers
The papacy and all the accompanying claims related to that "office"
Conditional forgiveness and election
Synergism in salvation
Salvation being a "process"
Justification by works before God
The notion of meritorious works
The distinction between "mortal" and "venial" sins
Devotion to Mary
The immaculate conception
The perpetual virginity of Mary
The assumption of Mary
In my worship, I also do not pray the so-called "Lord's prayer" (our sins have been forgiven and removed once and for all) and certainly not any Hail Marys. I do not believe that the Roman Catholic "church" wrote any of the biblical texts—prophets and apostles called by God did. I probably forgot a few other Catholic doctrines that I wholeheartedly reject. So yeah, please explain to me again how I "parasitize" on the Catholic "church".