The Gospel of Rome
Part 18: Dulia vs. Latria:

To counter the claim that praying to dead saints is an unbiblical abomination, Roman Catholic apologists claim there is a difference between "dulia" and "latria."

"Latria" is praise only to God.

"Dulia" is veneration of Mary and saints.

The Catholic Encyclopedia defines "dulia" as:

Dulia: (Greek doulia; Lat. servitus), a theological term signifying the honour paid to the saints, while latria means worship given to God alone, and hyperdulia the veneration offered to the Blessed Virgin Mary. [171]

Notice the distinction made between "dulia" and "latria."

The Roman Catholic Church argues that its devotion to Mary and other saints are not idolatry because they are merely offering "dulia," but not "latria."

James White proved that Biblically there is no distinction:

When we come to the New Testament... we discover that there is absolutely no distinction made between [dulia and latria] relevant to religious worship. As an example, we note Galatians 4:8

However at that time, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those which by nature are no gods.

But when you did not know God, you served, or were slaves to, those which by nature are not gods. Paul is speaking of the former idolatry of the Galatians.

They served (dulia) idols, those which by nature are not gods at all. Are we to assume, then, on the basis of the Roman Catholic definitions, that since they only served these idols that they were free from the charge of idolatry, since they didn't give latria as well? Of course not! Their service of these idols was wrong whether the term latria or dulia was used. In fact, in the Latin Vulgate, both duleuo (to serve) and latreuo (to worship) are rendered by the same term, servio. No matter how the defender of Rome tries, no basis can possibly be found in Scripture for the distinction of latria and dulia. [172]

Also, adding more weight to the argument that there is no distinction between dulia and latria is the fact that the Hebrew word, avad, (Hebrew for "worship") is translated as both dulia and latria in the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible).

Next: Holy Relics

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