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Summary: Help believers understand that the Bible doesn’t teach sinless perfection; but rather endurance, perservering to the end and being an overcomer is what it’s all about.

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MICAH 7:8

Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me.

THE SAINTS ARE JUST THE SINNERS WHO FALL DOWN AND GET UP

In our modern day vernacular we have made the term “SAINT” synonymous with perfection.

If someone:

Lives a life above reproach we say “He is a real saint”

Dedicates their life to doing good works, such as Mother Teresa, we say “She is a real saint”

Lives a life exemplary of good morals and high standards we ascribe to them the title of saint.

We have set some pretty high standards for achieving sainthood!

The Catholic church has even set the bar higher and stiffened the requirements.

But In the New Testament, Paul refers to saints as those who are set apart for God’s service.

By the 2nd century A.D. the meaning was changed to it’s current concept:

“One who is of almost heroic stature in defending the faith, or someone who has done exceptionally meritorious deeds.”

People, churches, cities, counties—everyday names bear echoes of saints, “holy ones” believed to have conversed with God, worked miracles, and often suffered bloody deaths for the faith.

The Catholic Church has a procedure…

First off in the process is a five-year waiting period after the person has died.

Then the “cause” for sainthood must be introduced by a bishop He appoints a “promoter” to start collecting information on the candidate, such as a “heroically” virtuous life and doctrinal faithfulness.

At the Vatican, an “advocate” argues for declaring the person a saint, while the “promoter of the faith”—formerly known as the devil’s advocate—argues against.

A committee of cardinals and other church officials studies the crossfire of opinions, then discusses it before the pope.

If he finds the evidence convincing, he can declare the person “venerable,” or worthy of private devotions.

To attain the next level of “beatification,” a similar process is used to determine whether the person worked one or more miracles. This usually takes the form of healings that resist any natural explanation. The main exception is if the candidate is a martyr for the faith.

Generally, proof of a second miracle is needed in order for the person to be “canonized,” or declared a saint. That earns him or her a place on the churchwide calendar.

No one knows how long this all could take. Giorgio Frassati of Torino, Italy, died in 1925 of tuberculosis at the age of 24 working among the poor. His cause was held up for 40 years by Pope Pius XII. The reason: Frassati once went to a mountain picnic with young women. A broader-minded John Paul II beatifed Frassati in 1990.

Regardless, the Vatican is unlikely to canonize anyone by popular acclaim. It will be mainly whether the person’s own life appears to measure up to sainthood.

Wow! According to these requirements, I will never be a saint!

If I have to do all of that, I will never be able to do as David said in:

Psalm 30:4

4 Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.


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