This question concerns in part the following quote heard regularly by Presbyterian Pastors:

“Catholics deny the sufficiency of Christ’s redemptive work on the cross and by doing so, forfeit their salvation.”

The Idea is explained in the following terms:

Christ's sacrifice was perfect, and nothing we can do, not works, not anything, can save us. (Which a Catholic believes) but Catholics have to “DO” things, (as explained by many Pastors): doing Christ in the Eucharist, doing other Sacraments, doing works of Mercy, doing intercessory prayer, doing the Mass each and every week, fasting, alms giving and Prayer.

The idea that Catholics “DO” these graces instituted by Christ rather than “Receiving” them, seems to dominate the thinking of many Presbyterian brethren.

According to Presbyterians, what would be more perfect, and on what Biblical basis do they justify their choice?

  1. (Presbyterian Position)That Christ's Good works cover the sins of men with his sacrifice to the father, So that he no longer sees the the sinful nature of the Person, but rather sees the righteousness of the Son, and we are sanctified by that covering (No Actual Change to the Believer Is necessary after acceptance through faith), or,

  2. That Christ actually does more than cover up our sins by the meritorious actions of the Son, but provides for us a Church with Sacraments, Graces for us to help work out our salvation in fear and trembling, to actually increase our sanctity in a fallen world, to avoid the temptations of the flesh and not just to cover up our sinful nature, but to actually change and become sanctified by his Grace (Actual Change to the Believer is necessary after baptism).

  • @Caleb Thank you for your edit, I believe that you addressed the essence of my question in a way that I seem to be unable to do. I envy your talent.
    – Marc
    Commented Oct 12, 2017 at 12:31
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    The position listed as the Presbyterian position isn't an accurate depiction of the Presbyterian position. In addition, it seems a very strange question to say "which do Presbyterians think is more right, the Presbyterian position or the not-Presbyterian position?"
    – Birdie
    Commented Oct 12, 2017 at 23:03
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    @Marc that is an imaginary situation. Reformed Protestants do not believe it is possible to be saved and not undergo sanctification.
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 15:58
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    @Birdie The RCC may claim that baptism results in immediate sanctification, but both the Bible and plain evidence of the eyes shows that this is not true. Otherwise every Catholic would be living a perfect, sinless life False logic, since the RCC is not a "once saved always saved" denomination. Due to free will, the RCC holds that one can still make the (poor) decision to turn away from God, and only by turning back to God (Repentance) can hope for salvation return. As I did with a few Reformed questions, you brought partial understanding to that comment. Commented Dec 12, 2017 at 15:43
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    Thanks KorvinStarmast. Does not 100% sanctification, while in effect, result in a sinless life?
    – Birdie
    Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 1:16


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