I have had an ongoing email conversation with a Catholic friend for a little over a week. We are not trying to convert each other but communication about deep theological topics is difficult through the email medium (at least this particular topic). Not only that but our starting points are different. Distance limits coffee or dinner with her and her family so we are trapped with the medium we have. In many instances she believes we are talking about basically the same thing but to me we seem so far away.
I love the mental stimulation from these types of conversations but this has frustrated me. I cannot find the correct words to type so that it conveys the proper message. This is odd because I typically do not have problems finding words.
Her reply to my email discussed the status of one of her friends husbands who had recently died. He did not believe in God and she holds out hope that he is going to heaven after time in purgatory. I do not believe in purgatory for at least two reasons – Jesus doesn’t talk about it and if I have to be purified of my sins in purgatory then the death of Jesus was not good enough to purify me completely the first time which means His death was pointless and Christianity isn’t real. Why believe in Jesus as the way, the truth and the life if I can just wait for a long time in purgatory and get to heaven anyway?
John 14:6 – Jesus replied, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
One of the next topics we discussed was free will. One of my favorite topics to discuss – The Doctrines of Grace. Does God choose you or are you the hero of your story (did you save yourself)? I do not know where it will go next but I can’t wait to get her next email.