What Constitutes the Church? The Clergy or All Believers?

The Church

For centuries Romanism has taught that the head of the Church is the pope and the cardinals are its body. One of the early reformers, John Huss, wrote a response to this dogma in a book entitled “De Ecclessia“, for which he was condemned and burned at the stake in July 6, 1415. Following are the principal points he presents in answer to this common error; the quote is from the book “Ecclesiastical Empire”:

“We must regard the clerical body as made up of two sects: the clergy of Christ, and those of antichrist. The Christian clergy lean on Christ as their leader, and on his law. The clergy of antichrist lean for the most part, or wholly on human laws and the laws of antichrist; and yet pretend to be the clergy of Christ and of the Church, so as to seduce the people by a more cunning hypocrisy. And two sects which are so directly opposed, must necessarily be governed by two opposite heads with their corresponding laws.

Quoting the words of Christ: “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am in the midst of them,” he says: “There, then, would be a true particular Church; and accordingly, where three or four are assembled, up to the whole number of the elect; and in this sense the term Church is often used in the New Testament. Thus all the righteous who now, in the archbishopric of Prague, live under the reign of Christ, and in particular the elect, are the true Church of Prague. We may well be amazed to see with what effrontery those who are most devoted to the world, who live most worldly and abominable lives, most distant from the walk with Christ, and who are most unfruitful in performing the counsels and commandments of Christ, with what fearless effrontery such persons assert, that they are heads, or eminent members of the Church, which is His bride.”

“Christ alone is the all-sufficient Head of the Church. The Church needs no other, and therein consists its unity. If a Christian in connection with Christ were the head of the universal Church, we should have to concede, that such a Christian was Christ himself; or that Christ was subordinate to him, and only a member of the Church. Therefore, the apostles never thought of being aught else than servants of that Head, and humble ministers of the Church, His bride; but no one of them ever thought of excepting himself and asserting that he was the head or the bridegroom of the Church. Christ is the all-sufficient Head of the Church; as He proved during three hundred years of the existence of the Church, and still longer, in which time the Church was most prosperous and happy. The law of Christ is the most effectual to decide and determine ecclesiastical affairs, since God Himself has given it for this purpose. Christ himself is the Rock which Peter professed, and on which Christ founded the Church; which, therefore, will come forth triumphant out of all her conflicts.

“The pope and the cardinals may be the most eminent portion of the Church in respect of dignity, yet only in case they follow more carefully the pattern of Christ and, laying aside pomp and the ambition of the primacy, serve in a more active and humble manner their mother, the Church. But proceeding in the opposite way, they become the abomination of desolation: a college opposed to the humble college of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. Why should not Christ, who, in the holy supper, grants to believers the privilege of participating in a sacramental and spiritual manner of himself, — why should not He be more present to the Church, than the pope, who, living at a distance of more than eight hundred miles from Bohemia, can not by himself act directly on the feelings and movements of the faithful in Bohemia, as it is incumbent on the head to do! It would be enough, then, to say that the pope is a representative of Christ; and it would be well for him, if he were a faithful servant, predestined to a participation in the glory of his Head, — Jesus Christ.

“The papacy, by which a visible head was given to the Church, derived its origin from the emperor Constantine; for, until the gift of Constantine, the pope was but a colleague of the other bishops. If the Almighty God could not give other true successors of the apostles than the pope and the cardinals, it would follow that the power of the emperor, a mere man, by whom the pope and the cardinals were instituted, had set limits to the power of God. Since, then, the Almighty God is able to take away the prerogatives of all those emperors, and to bring back His Church once more to the condition in which all the bishops shall be on the same level, as it was before the gift of Constantine, it is evident that he can give others besides the pope and the cardinals, to be true successors of the apostles, so as to serve the Church as the apostles served it.

“It is evident that the greatest errors and the greatest divisions have arisen by occasion of this [visible] head of the Church, and that they have gone on multiplying to this day. For, before such a head had been instituted by the emperor, the Church was constantly adding to her virtues; but after the appointing of such a head the evils have continually mounted higher. And there will be no end to all this, until this head, with its body, be brought back to the rule of the apostles. Christ can better govern His Church by His true disciples scattered through all the world, without such monsters of supreme heads. The theological faculty have called the pope ‘the secure, never-failing, and all-sufficient refuge for his Church.’ No created being can hold this place. This language can be applied only to Christ. He alone is the secure, unfailing, and all-sufficient refuge for His Church, to guide and enlighten it. ‘Without me ye can do nothing.’ John 15.5.

“It injures not the Church, but benefits it, that Christ is no longer present to it after a visible manner; since He himself says to His disciples, and, therefore, to all their successors (John 16:7): ‘It is good for you that I go away; for if I went not away, the Comforter would not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him unto you.’ It is evident from this, as the truth itself testifies, that it is a salutary thing for the Church militant that Christ should ascend from it to heaven, that so His longer protracted bodily and visible presence on earth might not be prejudicial to her. Therefore, the Church is sufficiently provided for in the invisible guidance, and should need no visible one by which she might be made dependent. Suppose, then, that the pope who walks visibly among men, were as good a teacher as that promised Spirit of Truth, for which one need not to run to Rome or Jerusalem, since he is everywhere present, in that He fills the world [even then such visible head would not be “good” for the Church]. Suppose also that the pope were as secure, unfailing, and all-sufficient a refuge for all the sons of the Church as that Holy Spirit; it would follow that you supposed a fourth person in the divine Trinity.

“This Spirit, in the absence of a visible pope, inspired prophets to predict the future bridegroom of the Church, strengthened the apostles to spread the gospel of Christ through all the world, led idolaters to the worship of one only God, and ceases not, even until now, to instruct the bride and all her sons, to make them certain of all things, and guide them in all things that are necessary for salvation. As the apostles and priests of Christ ably conducted the affairs of the Church in all things necessary to salvation, before the office of pope had yet been introduced, so they will do it again if it should happen, it is quite possible it may, that no pope should exist, until the day of judgment; for Christ is able to govern His Church, after the best manner, by His faithful presbyters, without a pope. The cardinals, occupied with worldly business, can not teach and guide, by sermons, in the articles of faith and the precepts of the Lord, the members of the universal Church and of our Lord Jesus Christ. But the poor and lowly priests of Christ, who have put away out of their hearts all ambition, and all ungodliness of the world, being themselves guided by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,teach and guide the sons of the Church, quickened by the grace of the Holy Spirit, and give them certainty in the articles of faith and the precepts necessary to salvation. The Church has all that it needs in the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and ought to require nothing else; nothing else can be a substitute for that.”

Now, what is the church or body of Christ?

  • 1 Corinthians 3:11 – “The head of every man is Christ”
  • Ephesians 2:20 – “We are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones”
  • Colossians 1:18 – “He [Christ] is the head of the body”

Read the following extract from The Present Truth, Feb. 26, 1903:

WHAT IS THE CHURCH?

Not to multiply words, we find from Eph. 1:22, 23, that the church is the body of Christ. This body is composed of all who are Christ’s. The church is also called the house of God (1 Tim. 3:15), “whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing in the hope firm unto the end.” Heb. 3:6. The church is not composed of “the clergy,” so called, that is, of the ministry; for we read: “Ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God had set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.” 1 Cor. 12:27, 28. “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office; so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.” Rom. 12:4, 5.
The Greek word which is rendered “church,” is a compound word meaning “called out.” We have the word in the adjective “ecclesiastical.” God called Israel of old out of Egypt, and they formed “the church in the wilderness.” Acts 7:38. All who are in Christ have been called out of Egypt; for it is written, and fulfiled in Christ, “Out of Egypt have I called My Son.” Matt. 2:14, 15. Christ is “that great Shepherd of the sheep” (Heb. 13:20), and He stands and calls His sheep and as they hear His voice they come to Him. As they thus assemble about Him, they form His flock or congregation, and this is the word that really ought always to be used, instead of “church.” The names of “the general assembly and church [congregation] of the Firstborn” are “written in heaven” (Heb. 12:23); but whenever on earth there are two or three, or more, of “like precious faith” in the same neighbourhood, they naturally come together for mutual edification; and each one of these fragments of “the general assembly” is called a church, or congregation, since the life of the whole is in each part. “Unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” Eph. 4:7.

 

Share this:

Protestantism Is Not Dead

Tony Palmer

In a Conference attended by 3,000 leaders affiliated with Kenneth Copeland’s ministry, held in January 21-23, 2014, the Anglican bishop Tony Palmer presented a short video message from the Pope, recorded the previous week (January 14) by the bishop himself. In this video, Pope Francis sent a very personal message to the group:

“I am speaking to you as a brother. […] Let us allow our yearning to grow, because that will allow us find each other, to embrace one another, and together to worship Jesus Christ as the only Lord of history. […] Let’s give each other a spiritual hug and let God complete the work that he has begun. And this is a miracle. The miracle of unity has begun.”

Prior to showing this video, Palmer had to prepare the audience to what was coming. His goal was to make it appear that Protestantism was over, and that “division” was at an end. Accordingly, instead of addressing the issues that actually caused the Protestant Reformation, he attacked division itself, and labeled it as “diabolic”, but failed to mention Christ’s NOT uniting with the pharisees, and also Luke 12:50, where Jesus said: “Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division“. Here are Palmer’s own words:

“I’ve come to understand diversity is divine. It’s division that is diabolic. It’s true what you were saying about the glory; I agree with you on course of truth. The glory that the Father had He gave to Jesus. The glory was the presence of God. What is the Charismatic renewal? Is when we experience the presence of God. And he said: ‘And I’ve given them the Glory’ pragmatic reason, ‘so that they may be one’. It’s the glory that glues us together; not the doctrines. It’s the glory. If you accept that Christ is living in me, and the presence of God is in me, and the presence of God is in you, that’s all we need. Because God will sort out all our doctrines we get upstairs. Therefore Christian unity is the basis of our credibility, because Jesus said: ‘Until they are one, they will not believe.’ The world will not believe, as they should, until we are one.”

He attempts to cast a slur upon Protestantism by advancing the mistaken idea that the “division” was caused by Luther. Surprisingly, he seems unconscious of the original departure from faith and division caused by the Roman church in the time of Constantine and Sylvester. Consequently, by misrepresenting what the Reformation really is, Palmer tries to make it appear that the only reason for Luther’s protest was that he believed we are saved by grace, while others thought it was by works. Moreover, by citing that the 1999 Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification between the Lutheran World Federation and the Catholic Church “brought an end to the protest”, he makes it appear that all differences are suddenly gone and “the protest is over”. He seems to be wholly ignorant of even Luther’s reasons for standing up against the Roman system. You may read one of Luther’s letters in this link, which clearly states what he was protesting against: http://www.freedomsentinel.org/appeal-to-his-imperial-majesty-and-the-christian-nobility-of-germany-on-the-reformation-of-christianity/.

However, this was not the first time an attempt was put forth to silence the persistent protesters and overthrow Protestantism. In Dec. 5, 1912, more than three hundred delegates from thirty-one “Protestant” denominations repudiated the word “Protestant”. They did this in the very first opportunity they had during the meetings.

“In his speech at the opening of the Council, the outgoing president said that by this assembly he was caused to – ‘think of the Council of Nice – the first General Council of the Christian Church. This Council has almost the exact number that composed the Council of Nice. The history of the Church is largely told in her great Councils.’

And when the number of the delegates who actually were present and officially acting in the Council was made up and announced as ‘three hundred and nineteen,’ the statement was accompanied with the remark, ‘Just one more than the Council of Nice.’

Yes, the history of the Roman Church is largely told in her great Councils. And beyond all question her conspicuously great Councils were those of Nice, Constantinople, Ephesus, Chalcedon, Second of Nice, Trent, and the Vatican.

In brief the story of these ‘great Councils’ is this:

The net result of the first four was to put the dead formulas of human creed in the place of the living Word of God; a woman in the place of Christ; and a man in the place of God.

The Second Council of Nice, three hundred and fifty bishops, ‘unanimously pronounced that the worship of images is agreeable to Scripture and reason, to the Fathers and Councils of the Church.’

The Council of Trent put church-tradition above the Bible as ‘more sure and safe.’

The Vatican Council established the infallibility of the Pope.

And when the Federal Council in Chicago could count worthy of her aspiration such a record as that, then it certainly was about time that she were renouncing the name and title of Protestant.” (A. T. Jones, Lessons from the Reformation, chapter: “What is Protestant?”).

They repudiated the word “Protestant”. Bishop Palmer asserts that the “protest is over”. This requires an explanation of what the “protest” was, and what are the implications of it being “over”. This can hardly be better expressed than in the following words:

“What is the meaning of the word ‘Protestant?’ How came it into the world?

The word ‘Protestant,’ as expressing a religious distinction; the word ‘Protestant’ with a capital P; the word ‘Protestant,’ as dealt with by the Chicago Council of the Federated Churches; came into the world with the word ‘Protest’ that was used in the Protest that was made at the Diet of Spires in Germany, April 19, 1529.

That Protest was made against the arbitrary, unjust, and persecuting procedure of the papacy in that Diet.

This procedure in the Diet of Spires of 1529 swept away the religious liberty that had been agreed upon and regularly established in the Diet of Spires of 1526.

The religious liberty established by the Diet of Spires of 1526 was the result of a deadlock in the proceedings of that Diet over the enforcement, by all the power of the then papacy, of the Edict of Worms that had been issued in 1521 commanding the destruction of Martin Luther, his adherents, his writings, and all who printed or circulated his writings, or who on their own part should print or circulate the like.

Thus the Protest in which originated the word ‘Protestant’ was against the effort of the papacy to destroy the Reformation, and was in behalf of the Reformation and its principles.

And now for anybody to renounce, repudiate, or disown, the word or title ‘Protestant,’ is to repudiate the Protest.

To repudiate the Protest, is to repudiate as unworthy the cause and the principles in behalf of which the Protest was made.

And that cause was the Reformation. Those principles were the principles of the Reformation.

Therefore, to renounce, repudiate, or disown, the word and title ‘Protestant’ is nothing less and nothing else than to repudiate the Reformation.” (Ibidem).

To repudiate the Reformation is to restore the Roman Church to absolute power, which will revive all the terrors of the Church and State unholy alliance. Freedom of conscience once again will be proscribed, and a new form of religious despotism will be established. The very principles that made the United States the great nation that it is will be repudiated. The separation of Church and State, which Christ Himself has established in the words: “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s”, will be effectually vanished, and in free America, the Papal banners will triumphantly fly for a time.

But the principles of the Reformation are not dead by any means. They live in the heart of every true Christian. If there was only one person left to defend those principles, the Reformation would still continue, for it started with but a few individuals.

“And in and for all modern times the liberty of thought and independence of faith – the Religious Liberty – established as a natural and unalienable right of mankind by the Constitution of the United States, is the truest expression of the principle of the Protest that there is in any organic connection in the world.” (Ibid., chapter: “What ‘Protestant’ Means in America”).

We therefore declare that the Reformation is not dead. It lives. Truth will triumph. God lives and reigns. And the “sure word of prophecy” has already pronounced the fate of the Church who is called in the Bible the “whore of Babylon”: “Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.” Revelation 18:8.

And this protest will be continued until the time that “Michael [shall] stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.” Daniel 12:1. May the Lord arise a defend His people, “for vain is the help of man.” Psalm 60:11. “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31.

Share this:

Luther’s “Appeal to his Imperial Majesty and the Christian Nobility of Germany, on the Reformation of Christianity”

In June 24th, 1520, Martin Luther published his famous “Appeal to his Imperial Majesty and the Christian Nobility of Germany, on the Reformation of Christianity”. It is a standing protest against the Papacy, and shows the true issues which started the Protestant Reformation.

“It is not from presumption that I, who am only one of the people, undertake to address your lordships. The misery and oppression endured at this moment by all the States of Christendom, and more especially by Germany, wring from me a cry of distress. I must call for aid; I must see whether God will not give His Spirit to some one of our countrymen, and stretch out a hand to our unhappy nation. God has given us a young and generous prince (the emperor Charles V), and thus filled our hearts with high hopes. But we too, must, on our own part, do all we can.

“Now the first thing necessary, is, not to confide in our own great strength, or our own high wisdom. When any work otherwise good is begun in self-confidence, God casts it down, and destroys it. Frederick I, Frederick II, and many other emperors besides, before whom the world trembled, have been trampled upon by the popes, because they trusted more to their own strength than to God. They could not but fall. In this war we have to combat the powers of hell; and our mode of conducting it must be to expect nothing from the strength of human weapons — to trust humbly in the Lord, and look still more to the distress of Christendom than to the crimes of the wicked. It may be that, by a different procedure, the work would begin under more favorable appearances; but suddenly, in the heat of the contest, confusion would arise, bad men would cause fearful disaster, and the world would be deluged with blood. The greater the power, the greater the danger, when things are not done in the fear of the Lord.

“The Romans, to guard against every species of reformation, have surrounded themselves with three walls. When attacked by the temporal power, they denied its jurisdiction over them, and maintained the superiority of the spiritual power. When tested by Scripture, they replied, that none could interpret it but the pope. When threatened with a council, they again replied that none but the pope should convene it. They have thus carried off from us the three rods destined to chastise them, and abandoned themselves to all sorts of wickedness. But now may God be our help, and give us one of the trumpets which threw down the wall of Jericho. Let us blow down the walls of paper and straw which the Romans have built around them; and lift up the rods which punished the wicked, by bringing the wiles of the devil to the light of day.

“It has been said that the pope, the bishops, the priests, and all those who people convents, form the spiritual or ecclesiastical estate; and that princes, nobles, citizens, and peasants, form the secular or lay estate. This is a specious tale. But let no man be alarmed. All Christians belong to the spiritual estate; and the only difference between them is in the functions which they fulfill. We have all but one baptism, but one faith; and these constitute the spiritual man. Unction, tonsure, ordination, consecration, given by the pope, or by a bishop, may make a hypocrite, but can never make a spiritual man. We are all consecrated priests by baptism, as St. Peter says: ‘You are a royal priesthood;’ although all do not actually perform the offices of kings and priests, because no one can assume what is common to all without the common consent. But if this consecration of God did not belong to us, the unction of the pope could not make a single priest.

“If ten brothers, the sons of one king, and possessing equal claims to his inheritance should choose one of their number to administer for them, they would all be kings, and yet only one of them would be the administrator of their common power. So it is in the Church. Were several pious laymen banished to a desert, and were they, from not having among them a priest consecrated by a bishop, to agree in selecting one of their number, whether married or not, he would be a truly a priest, as if all the bishops of the world had consecrated him. In this way were Augustine, Ambrose, and Cyprian elected. Hence it follows, that laymen and priests, princes and bishops or, as we have said, ecclesiastics and laics, have nothing to distinguish them but their functions. They have all the same condition, but they have not all the same work to perform.

“This being so, why should not the magistrate correct the clergy? The secular power was appointed by God for the punishment of the wicked and the protection of the good, and must be left free to act throughout Christendom, without respect of persons, be they pope, bishops, priests, monks, or nuns. St. Paul says to all Christians, Let every soul (and, consequently, the pope also) be subject to the higher powers; for they bear not the sword in vain (Rom. 13:1, 4).

“It is monstrous to see him who calls himself the vicar of Jesus Christ displaying a magnificence unequaled by that of any emperor. Is this the way in which he proves his resemblance to lowly Jesus, or humble Peter? He is, it is said, the lord of the world. But Christ, whose vicar he boasts to be, has said: My kingdom is not of this world. Can the power of a vicegerent exceed that of his prince?

“Do you know of what use the cardinals are? I will tell you, Italy and Germany have many convents, foundations, and benefices, richly endowed. How could their revenues be brought to Rome? . . . Cardinals were created; then on them cloisters and prelacies were bestowed; and at this hour . . . Italy is almost a desert — the convents are destroyed — the bishoprics devoured — the towns in decay — the inhabitants corrupted — worship dying out, and preaching abolished. . . . Why? — Because all the revenue of the churches go to Rime. Never would the Turk himself have so ruined Italy.

“And now that they have thus sucked the blood of their won country they come into Germany. They being gently; but let us be on our guard. Germany will soon become like Italy. We have already some cardinals. Their thought is — before the rustic Germans comprehend our design, they will have neither bishopric, nor convent, nor benefice, nor penny, nor farthing. Antichrist must possess the treasures of the earth. Thirty or forty cardinals will be elected in a single day; to one will be given Bamberg, to another the duchy of Wurzburg, and rich benefices will be annexed, until the churches and cities are laid desolate. And then the pope will say: ‘I am the vicar of Christ, and the pastor of His flocks. Let the Germans be resigned.’ How do we Germans submit to such robbery and concussion on the part of the pope? If France has successfully resisted, why do we allow ourselves to be thus sported with and insulted? Ah! if they deprived us of nothing but our goods! But they ravage churches, plunder the sheep of Christ, abolish the worship, and suppress the Word of God.

“Let us endeavor to put a stop to this desolation and misery. If we would march against the Turks, let us begin with the worst species of them. If we hang pickpockets, and behead robbers, let us not allow Roman avarice to escape — avarice, which is the greatest of all thieves and robbers; and that, too, in the name of St. Peter and Jesus Christ. Who can endure it? Who can be silent? Is not all that the pope possesses stolen? He neither purchased it nor inherited it from St. Peter, nor acquired it by the sweat of his own brow. Where, then, did he get it?

“Is it not ridiculous, that the pope should pretend to be the lawful heir of the empire? Who gave it to him? Was it Jesus Christ, when He said: The kings of the earth exercise lordship over them; but it shall not be so with you? (Luke 22:25, 26.) How can he govern an empire and at the same time preach, pray, study, and take care of the poor? Jesus Christ forbade His disciples to carry with them gold or clothes, because the office of the ministry can not be performed without freedom from every other care; yet the pope would govern the empire, and at the same time remain pope.

“Let the pope renounce every species of title to the kingdom of Naples and Sicily. He has no more right to it than I have. His possession of Bologna, Imola, Ravenna, Romagna, Marche d’Ancona, etc., is unjust, and contrary to the commands of Jesus Christ. No man, says, St. Paul, who goeth a warfare entangleth himself with the affairs of this life (2 Tim. 2:2). And the pope, who pretends to take the lead in the war of the gospel, entangles himself more with the affairs of this life than any emperor or king. He must be disencumbered of all this toil. The emperor should put a Bible and a prayer book into the hands of the pope, that the pope may leave kings to govern, and devote himself to preaching and prayer.

“The first thing necessary is to banish from all the countries of Germany the legates of the pope and the pretended blessings which they sell us at the weight of gold, and which are sheer imposture. They take our money; and why? — For legalizing ill-gotten gain, for loosing oaths, and teaching us to break faith, to sin, and go direct to hell. . . Hearest thou, O pope! — not pope most holy, but pope most sinful. . . May God, from His place in heaven, cast down thy throne into the infernal abyss!

“And now I come to a lazy band, which promises much, but performs little. Be not angry, dear sirs, my intention is good; what I have to say is a truth at once sweet and bitter, — viz., that it is no longer necessary to build cloisters for mendicant monks. Good God! we have only too many of them; and would they were all suppressed. . . To wander vagabond over the country, never has done, and never will do good.

“Into what a state have the clergy fallen, and how many priests are burdened with women, and children, and remorse, while no one comes to their assistance! Let the pope and the bishops run their course, and let those who will, go to perdition; all very well! but I am resolved to unburden my conscience, and open my mouth freely, however pope, bishops, and others, may be offended! . . . I say, then, that according to the institution of Jesus Christ and the apostles, every town ought to have a pastor or bishop, and that this pastor may have a wife, as St. Paul writes to Timothy: Let the bishop be the husband of one wife (1 Tim. 3:2), and as is still practiced in the Greek Church. But the devil has persuaded the pope, as St. Paul tell Timothy (1 Tim. 4:3), to forbid the clergy to marry. And hence evils so numerous that it is impossible to give them in detail. What is to be done? How are we to save the many pastors who are blameworthy only in this, that they live with a female, to whom they wish with all their heart to be lawfully united? Ah! let them save their conscience! — let them take this woman in lawful wedlock, and live decently with her, not troubling themselves whether it pleases or displeases the pope. The salvation of your soul is of greater moment than arbitrary and tyrannical laws — laws not imposed by the Lord.

“It is time to take the case of the Bohemians into serious consideration, that hatred and envy may cease and union be again established. . . In this way must heretics be refuted by Scripture, as the ancient Fathers did, and not subdued by fire. On a contrary system, executioners would be the most learned of doctors. Oh! would to God that each party among us would shake hands with each other in fraternal humility, rather than harden ourselves in the idea of our power and right! Charity is more necessary than the Roman papacy. I have now done what was in my power. If the pope or his people oppose it, they will have to give an account. The pope should be ready to renounce the popedom, and all his wealth, and all his honors, if he could thereby save single soul. But he would see the universe go to destruction sooner than yield a hairbreadth of his usurped power. I am clear of these things.

“I much fear the universities will become wide gates to hell, if due care is not taken to explain the Holy Scriptures, and engrave it on the hearts of the students. My advices to every person is, not to place his child where the Scripture does not reign paramount. Every institution in which the studies carried on, lead to a relaxed consideration of the Word of God, must prove corrupting.

“I presume, however, that I have struck too high a note, proposed many things that will appear impossible, and been somewhat too severe on the many errors which I have attacked. But what can I do? Better that the world be offended with me than God! . . . The utmost which it can take from me is life. I have often offered to make peace with my opponents, but through their instrumentality, God has always obliged me to speak out against them. I have still a chant upon Rome in reserve; and if they have an itching ear, I will sing it to them at full pitch. Rome! do ye understand me?

“If my cause is just, it must be condemned on the earth, and justified only by Christ in heaven. Therefore let pope, bishops, priests, monks, doctors, come forward, display all their zeal, and give full vent to their fury. Assuredly they are just the people who ought to persecute the truth, as in all ages they have persecuted it.” (Jean Henri Merle D’Aubigne, History of the Reformation in the sixteenth century, William Collins, Sons and Company, 1870, pp. 158-161).

Share this:

Roman Standards in Sight

The apporaching army...

“Those who know what Rome has once been are best able to appreciate what she is.” Henry Hallam

The separation of Church and State, which is one of the pillars of the U.S. Constitution, is being threatened as never before. The American Republic is being charmed by the overtures from Rome, and will soon be entangled by it. In the past, Protestants were taught to “abhor popery” and held that “to seek harmony with Rome would be disloyalty to God”. But one would have to search diligently in order to find people that even understand the meaning of true Protestantism.

History does not fail to inform the present generation about the course taken by the Papacy in its war against freedom. Whenever it was in power and had undisputed sway over the minds of its subjects, it held that obedience to the Pope was above all other duties, even above one’s conscience. The unbelievable assertions of this haughty power can be seen in its correspondence with other sovereigns.

Pope Nicholas I (April 24, 858, to Nov. 13, 867), in a letter to the Byzantine Emperor Michael III over a controversy that arose between the Emperor and the See of Rome, wrote the following words:

Pope Nicholas I
Pope Nicholas I (858-867 A.D.)

“Know, prince, that the vicars of Christ are above the judgment of mortals; and that the most powerful sovereigns have no right to punish the crimes of popes, how enormous soever they may be. Your thoughts should be occupied by the efforts which they accomplish for the correction of the Church, without disquieting yourself about their actions; for no matter how scandalous or criminal may be the debaucheries of the pontiffs, you should obey them, for they are seated on the chair of St. Peter. …

“Cease, then, to oppose our rights, and obey our orders, or else we will, in our turn, raise our power against yours, and will say to the nations, People, cease to bow your heads before your proud masters. Overthrow these impious sovereigns,these sacrilegious kings, who have arrogated to themselves the right of commanding men, and of taking away the liberty of their brethren.

“Fear, then, our wrath, and the thunders of our vengeance; for Jesus Christ has appointed us with his own mouth absolute judges of all men; and kings themselves are submitted to our authority. The power of the Church has been consecrated before your reign, and it will subsist after it” (Louis Marrie de Cormenin, A Complete History of the Popes of Rome, Vol. 1, 1851 ed., p. 243).

In replying to the bishops of Lorraine, Pope Nicholas used the following extraordinary language, which depicts Rome’s understanding of the loyalty of all its subjects, regardless of their citizenship:

“You affirm that you are submissive to your sovereign, in order to obey the words of the apostle Peter, who said, ‘Be subject to the prince, because he is above all mortals in this world.’ But you appear to forget that we, as the vicar of Christ, have the right to judge all men; thus, before obeying kings, you owe obedience to us; and if we declare a monarch guilty, you should reject him from your communion until we pardon him.

“We alone have the power to bind and to loose, to absolve Nero, and to condemn him; and Christians can not, under penalty of excommunication, execute other judgment than ours, which alone is infallible. People are not the judges of their princes; they should obey, without murmuring, the most iniquitous orders; they should bow their foreheads under the chastisements which it pleases kings to inflict on them; for a sovereign can violate the fundamental laws of the State, and seize upon the wealth of citizens, by imposts or by confiscations; he can even dispose of their lives, without any of his subjects having the right to address to him simple remonstrances. But if we declare a king heretical and sacrilegious, — if we drive him from the Church, — clergy and laity, whatever their rank, are freed from their oaths of fidelity, and may revolt against his power…” (Ibid., p. 242).

In inciting Charles the Bald against the King of Lorraine, Nicholas said:

“… and we order you, in the name of religion, to invade his States, burn his cities, and massacre his people, whom we render responsible for the resistance of their bad prince.” (Ibid., p. 243).

When Bagoris, King of Bulgaria, who had recently become a Catholic, inquired of the Pope if he had sinned in compelling his subjects to become catholics, even putting to death those who refused, Nicholas replied:

“You advise us that you have caused your subjects to be baptized without their consent, and that you have exposed yourself to so violent a revolt as to have incurred the risk of your life. I glorify you for having maintained your authority by putting to death those wandering sheep who refused to enter the fold; and you not only have not sinned, by showing a holy rigor, but I even congratulate you on having opened the kingdom of heaven to the people submitted to your rule. A king need not fear to command massacres, when these will retain his subjects in obedience, or cause them to submit to the faith of Christ, and God will reward him in this world, and in eternal life, for these murders.” (Ibid., p. 244).

This haughty despot is now called “Saint Nicholas the Great”. The principles which he expounded are far from being recanted by the Church. Every American, who truly understands what American citizenship really is, should be alarmed to see the approach of this power to the “land of the free”. When will people awake to their danger?

“The pacific tone of Rome in the United States does not imply a change of heart. She is tolerant where she is helpless. Says Bishop O’Connor: ‘Religious liberty is merely endured until the opposite can be carried into effect without peril to the Catholic world.’ The Catholic Review says: ‘Protestantism, of every form, has not, and never can have, any right where Catholicity is triumphant.’ (A strange kind of catholicity!) The archbishop of St. Louis once said: ‘Heresy and unbelief are crimes; and in Christian countries, as in Italy and Spain, for instance, where all the people are Catholics, and where the Catholic religion is an essential part of the law of the land, they are punished as other crimes.’” (Josiah Strong, Our Country, p. 47).

Pope Francis in America 2015
U.S. President Barak Obama and Pope Francis together at the White House, September 23, 2015.

These are the last days of American Republic. Soon the Roman standards will be flying over this Nation. The Constitution will be replaced by an Imperial Religious Despotism, and Protestantism, which escaped its death penalty in the Old World, will be opposed by its unabated foe. But we cannot wait in silence, as if we willingly accepted the situation. Against the Papal encroachments, we put forth a most decided PROTEST! Where are the defenders of freedom? How are they unable to see what’s coming? Have they failed to learn from history?

Share this:

And now he resigns…

John Boehner resigns...
John Boehner resigns after accomplishing his stated goal.

September 25, 2015, just one day after fulfilling his stated 20-year goal of bringing the Pope to speak before a joint session of the U.S. Congress, catholic Speaker for the House John Boehner resigns! He seems to have accomplished his [catholic] goal and felt no need of remaining in Congress for the sake of the Nation. It surely makes us wonder if that was his purpose for being there. And if so, what other agendas are actually being carried on to bring this Protestant Government back to Rome by men in high responsible positions.

Here’s his statement expressing his role in inviting “three different Popes to come and address a joint session of Congress” in the last 20 years.

Share this:

Revelation 13 is coming true!

Pope Francis in the U.S. Congress
Pope Francis speaking to the U.S. Congress, September 24, 2015.

“And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, and deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.” Revelation 13:11-18.

“By the decree enforcing the institution of the papacy in violation of the law of God, our nation [the United States] will disconnect herself fully from righteousness. When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this threefold union, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government, and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near.

“Through the two great errors, the immortality of the soul and Sunday sacredness, Satan will bring the people under his deceptions. While the former lays the foundation of spiritualism, the latter creates a bond of sympathy with Rome. The Protestants of the United States will be foremost in stretching their hands across the gulf to grasp the hand of spiritualism; they will reach over the abyss to clasp hands with the Roman power; and under the influence of this threefold union, this country will follow in the steps of Rome in trampling on the rights of conscience. . . .

“Papists, Protestants, and worldling will alike accept the form of godliness without the power, and they will see in this union a grand movement for the conversion of the world and the ushering in of the long-expected millennium.

“When our nation [the United States] shall so abjure the principles of its government as to enact a Sunday law, Protestantism will in this act join hands with popery; it will be nothing else than giving life to the tyranny which has long been eagerly watching its opportunity to spring again into active despotism.”

Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 451.

Share this:

They are joining hands!

US and Vatican flags in the White House!

“And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.” Revelation 13:11-12.

Share this:

Liberty countdown…

September 24, 2015, will be one of the most regretful days of American history. This day will be eternally remembered as the day in which this free country, who prized civil and religious freedoms as more important than life itself, has, through its legislative branch, opened its arms to receive the representative of the Catholic Church — a system which historically has been the enemy of religious freedom and liberty of conscience.

“The Constitution of the United States guarantees liberty of conscience. Nothing is dearer or more fundamental. Pope Pius IX., in his Encyclical Letter of August 15, 1854, said: ‘The absurd and erroneous doctrines or ravings in defense of liberty of conscience, are a most pestilential error—a pest, of all others, most to be dreaded in a State.’ The same pope, in his Encyclical Letter of December 8, 1864, anathematized ‘those who assert the liberty of conscience and of religious worship,’ also ‘all such as maintain that the church may not employ force.’” (Josiah Strong, Our Country, 1885, p. 47).

The laws and principles of the Church of Rome are absolutely antagonistic to the laws and principles of the United States of America. History has been stained with the crimes committed by Rome. It was to prevent the despotic rule of the Church that the framers of the Constitution established a clear separation between church and State. The Protestant Reformation made it possible for people to follow their conscience in matters of religious duty, but the Romish Church, seeking to bring back those countries which had broken its yoke, launched the counter-reformation, and set itself to accomplish by craftiness what it could not do by force. Unfortunately, Protestants seem to be blindfolded to what the Papal Church is endeavoring. They imagine that the Church has changed, but it has not. It will never relinquish its claim to infallibility.

“The pacific tone of Rome in the United States does not imply a change of heart. She is tolerant where she is helpless. Says Bishop O’Connor: ‘Religious liberty is merely endured until the opposite can be carried into effect without peril to the Catholic world.’” (Idem).

By invitation of John Boehner, the Speaker for the House, Pope Francis will “make history as the first Pope to ever address a joint meeting of Congress”! Can you imagine if the founding fathers could see this happening? What could be worse than that? Religious freedom was as dear to themselves as their civil freedom. Protestantism and Republicanism were the pillars that made this country achieve its greatness. But, as someone has said, “ignorance is the enemy of Freedom”. If you don’t know what Romanism really is, you will most likely be charmed by it. But, fortunately enough, history has preserved the evil deeds this system has perpetrated. Books such as “History of Protestantism”, by James A. Wylie, “Ecclesiastical Empire”, by A. T. Jones, “Fifty Years in the Church of Rome”, by Father Chiniquy, and a host of other books, will serve to enlighten anyone who whishes to know the character of this despotic system.

It does not take long to find that wherever the Romish Church has had its power in unrestricted sway, the fires of persecution burned hot against those who would not yield their God-given right, the right of conscience and of religious liberty. The Papal system has murdered more than 60 million people in the Middle Ages, and, should it receive the same power again, that number might seem a small fraction of the slain. For more than fifteen hundred years, it has proved again and again that it is fundamentally contrary to liberty. By torturing those who disagreed with them, and burning at the stake those who would not recant, this tyrant has silenced the protest of the “dissenters”.

Then what reason can be given for the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States to receive the leader of a system so contrary to civil and religious freedom? And by what misfortune is he speaking to the LEGISLATIVE branch of this country? Do they suppose that they can now befriend this despotic system? Do they even fathom that by this act they will, in future developments, throw this country into a religious despotism? Should we be silent when we see the danger approaching? Should we allow it without any protest? Absolutely not!

We, the free people of this country, do most decidedly PROTEST against this attempt against liberty! We protest against the Senate and the House of Representatives inviting the Bishop of Rome to speak to them. We protest against the breaking the safeguards of this free Republic. We protest against this union with the papacy and we warn all the people of the world that this will be one of the last steps before Earth’s final destruction. Free America will join hands with the enemies of freedom, and will form an image to the beast (Revelation 13:14). Then, this country will become the persecutor, and Protestants will too late regret this unwise step in inviting the enemies of Christ to be their friends.

What can you do:

  1. Call your representative and let him know that you are against this attack on freedom: http://www.house.gov.
  2. Share this PROTEST with as many people as you can. We have to act now!
  3. Pray that God will protect His people from this unholy and disastrous alliance.
Share this:

The Danger

It is dangerous to forget. It is a safeguard to remember. History is a lesson book that displays an abundance of trial experiments of frightful human attempts to exalt themselves and control the minds of others.

Religious Liberty is a divine gift to humanity. It is essential to the full development of human beings. This liberty has come to us today at a very high price. It cost the lives of tens of millions of people that would not yield their conscience to another person.

This history is to be kept in mind if we are to avoid repeating it and plunging the world into another phase of the Dark Ages, only that this time it will be worse, for humanity has developed improved methods of coercion and investigation.

Watch out, sentinels! When you see the doom approaching, fear not to lift up your voices. If we be quiet now, we may not have a chance to say anything else.

Share this: