40 Questions About Roman Catholicism

40 Questions About Roman Catholicism
By Gregg R. Allison
Kregal Academic, 2021, 326 pp.

5 Stars

Is Roman Catholicism Christian? Such a question is repugnant to many evangelicals in this era of undiscerning pluralism. But how well do you really know Roman Catholicism and what it teaches?

In his previous book, “Roman Catholic Theology and Practice: An Evangelical Assessment” (2014), evangelical theologian, Gregg Allison, posited that the Roman Catholic church operates according to two basic constructs:

  • The Nature-Grace Interdependence, which claims the concrete conference of divine grace through nature, e.g., priests, water (baptism), oil (confirmation, last rites), laying of hands (ordination), bread (Jesus wafer), pilgrimage sites (healing), etc.
  • The Christ-Church Interconnection, whereby the Catholic church presents itself as the prolongation of the incarnation of Christ.

In this outstanding new book, published as part of Kregal Academic’s “40 Questions” series, Allison examines most of the major Roman Catholic doctrines and how they align within the Nature-Grace and Christ-Church constructs. The Catholic view on a particular doctrine is presented quite objectively followed by a Protestant/Biblical response. I would have loved to have listed the titles of all forty chapters to give you an idea of the scope of this examination, but I realize that few would have labored through it. Suffice to say Allison addresses the major doctrinal differences between Roman Catholicism and Gospel Christianity, most importantly, the opposing views on justification (infusion of sacramental grace and meritorious obedience vs. the imputation of Christ’s perfect righteousness) and salvation (by sacramental grace and merit vs. by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone). Merit was unabashedly taught as a component of Catholicism’s salvation system back when I was a young Catholic parochial school student, but the term has fallen out of favor within RC-ism because of its blatant anti-Gospel connotations and has been replaced with such sophistical phrases as “cooperating with grace” and “maintaining friendship with God,” but Allison accurately identifies merit as the bottom line of RC soteriology.

I wish there was more historical context in this book, but I realize Allison is writing from a theologian’s perspective rather than a historian’s. Allison’s tone is irenic almost to a fault, which comports with his view that confrontational evangelism is not effective. Praise God for a book such as this in 2021 when ecumenism with Rome is rampant within big tent evangelicalism. Much thanks to Dr. Allison and Kregal Academic Publishing. I’ve reviewed over 120 books on Roman Catholicism over the last six years and this one is easily one of the best. Be forewarned that this book is aimed towards academics, it’s not a breezy read for the beach.

“40 Questions About Roman Catholicism” can be ordered from Amazon here.

12 thoughts on “40 Questions About Roman Catholicism

  1. The information is out there to learn about the false gospel of Rome if anyone really wants to know. There is no excuse for ignorance. Yet pastors today go merrily along and not only do not expose RC for what it is but promote it in various ways.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Gregg Allison is a theology professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and I imagine he gets A LOT of professional and personal pushback for his efforts to educate evangelicals about RC-ism and its false gospel.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow this book was published in 2021???
    And it was published by a publisher that people wouldn’t consider whack???
    Wow!
    Good for the author and also Kregel Academic. Grateful for ALlison’s book. Good review. By the way this would be a kind of book I bring with me to vacation lol

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yes, I’m very grateful for an excellent book such as this being published in 2021. Allison is a professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and I imagine he receives a degree of pushback and criticism from his Rome-enamoured SBC peers.

      Lol! You and I definitely don’t gravitate towards the “typical” breezy vacation reading material.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No doubt in his context of being a professor of a respectable seminary there are some pushback. I wish there were more professors like him…and also professors with more bite too lol

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Answering your question about my reading: I am reading a biblical theology book on the theme of sonship in the NT, also reading an apologetics book on Deconstructionist Jacques Derrida and also starting a commentary on Exodus but then I realize it wasn’t the right fit so now looking for another one; also a book on Christian persecution and also a book on Marines in Korean war!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Interesting topics but most over my head, especially that one about Derrida (had to google him). That’s great that you can juggle so many books at the same time. It’s very rare that I read two at the same time.

        Liked by 1 person

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