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If the Bible says we are only to follow God’s Commandments, how can the Church require its members to follow man-made precepts?

Full Question

If the Bible says we are to follow the Commandments of God and not the traditions of men, how can the Catholic Church require, under penalty of sin, that its members follow the Church’s man-made commandments called precepts?

Answer

The precepts of the Church are not opposed to, nor are they outside of, the Commandments of God. They are within those Commandments and are intended to help keep the faithful within the Commandments.

There are basically six, listed in different ways in different books: (1) to attend Mass and to refrain from unnecessary work on Sundays and holy days; (2) to fast and abstain on appointed days; (3) to go to confession at least once a year; (4) to receive the Holy Eucharist at least once a year; (5) to contribute material support to the Church; and (6) not to marry within certain degrees of kindred. These precepts are intended to bind the faithful close to the Church and to God.











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8 comments

  1. Mooncat Nelson Reply

    If the Ten Commandments say, “Thou shalt not kill”, how do you explain Deuteronomy 13:6-9?

    1. Mitchell Owen Osmer Reply

      Exodus 25:1 And God spake all these words, saying,
      2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
      3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
      4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
      5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
      6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
      7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
      8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
      9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
      10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
      11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
      12 ¶ Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
      13 Thou shalt not kill.
      14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
      15 Thou shalt not steal.
      16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
      17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.

  2. Jim Reply

    Rejecting God 7th day Sabbath to keep the man made tradition of Sunday keeping “is” in direct opposition to Yahweh(God`s) Commandment to keep the 7th day holy as a sign that Yahweh is our God and that we are His people.

  3. George Kammer Reply

    I don’t need 6 precepts to bind me closer to
    God. I need only to believe in the Trinity, and follow best as I can the first and second commandents….

    1. Mitchell Owen Osmer Reply

      But, God says all the commandments are good—-He wrote them ALL with His finger, So why follow only 2?

  4. Charles D. Winters Reply

    IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO BE IN THE CHURCH OF GOD UNTIL WE COME TO JESUS -JESUS IS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH EPHESIANS 5.23 …ONCE WE ACCEPT CHRIST IN OUR HEART – THEN OUR FATHER ACCEPTS US INTO HIS CHURCH – THE CHURCHES WERE ESTABLISHED IN FAITH ACTS 16.5…WE HAVE BEEN JUSTIFIED BY FAITH -WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD… ROMANS 5.1

  5. john richardson Reply

    how strange the big modern religions have become all you have to do is pray to JESUS CHRIST and accept him as the SON OF GOD AND YOUR SAVIOUR tell him you have sinned and ask for his forgiveness and through JESUS CHRIST you will be saved how dare these modern churches change GODS words the gospel is what matters and should never be changed but beware GOD warned us all this would happen and its up to all of us to earn our everlasting life

  6. Mitchell Owen Osmer Reply

    Exodus 25:1 And God spake all these words, saying,
    2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
    3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
    4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
    5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
    6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
    7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
    8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
    9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
    10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
    11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
    12 ¶ Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
    13 Thou shalt not kill.
    14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
    15 Thou shalt not steal.
    16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
    17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.

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