But if you were to enter the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany church on October 30th, 1517 – the day prior to Martin Luther nailing his 95 Thesis to the door – and asked the priest whether the Roman Catholic church taught salvation by works or by grace, what do you think the answer would be?
The church in Luther’s day taught, and Catholicism continues to teach, that it is impossible for sinful man to be saved apart from God’s grace.
Although it came together after the Reformation began, the Council of Trent states:
“If anyone says that man can be justified before God by his own works, whether done by his own natural powers or by the teaching of the Law, without divine grace through Jesus Christ, let him be anathema” (Session 6; can. 1)