Apologetics of Faith Alone
One cannot be saved, unless they are born again (John 3:3) and accept Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. This is partially true but the meaning is distorted. The verse non-Catholics like to quote, John 3:3, is not completed by Jesus, or let us say interpreted until verse 3:5. Let us look two verses ahead at John 3:5. In John 3:5, Nicodemus is confused about being born again. Jesus clarifies what He states to Nicodemus stating:
(John 3:5) - Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."
Here we see that born again means the sacrament of baptism! If the non-Catholic would only read a little further he would find the true meaning of being "born again."
Do Catholics believe that the good works they do will get them into Heaven? Catholics do believe that works will get them to Heaven accompanied by faith and God's grace. There are so many verses in the Bible stating that entrance into Heaven is not as simple as saying "I accept Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior." Let us see what the Bible has to say about salvation:
(Phil 2:12) -…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
(Rom 2:5-6) - …the righteous judgment of God; Who will render to every man according to his deeds:
(James 2:14) - What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him?
(Mt 16:27) - For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.
(2 Cor. 5:10) - For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
(Mt. 25:31 46) - (the verse is too long to quote, here is a summary) Jesus states that He will separate His sheep from the goats. Jesus goes on to say; when I was hungry did you feed me? When I was thirsty did you give me drink? When I was naked did you clothe me? When I was sick did you visit me? When I was in prison did you visit me? When I was stranger did you take me in and clothe me? Jesus then states that anyone who has done these things for his brother did so for Himself and He invites the righteous into life eternal. Those who did not help his brother in need, were sent into everlasting punishment.
In the verses above, it is quite clear to see that salvation is not as simple as stating that one proclaim Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. It is a nice thing to say and should be said every day, but there is more to salvation then accepting Christ as one's personal Lord and Savior.TAN Books - Publishers You Can Trust With Your Faith