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Pope in Rome_Pedo

Pope Francis in Ireland.

“And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”

    – Revelation 18:4

In part one of this series the point was made that the voice from heaven in Revelation 18:4 – the voice being most probably that of God the Father or perhaps of Christ, since it refers to “my people” – issued one command and two purposes. The command was to “come out of her” meaning to come out of the Mother of Harlots city, which we identified as Rome papal.

To this command, the Apostle John tells us that the voice from heaven appended two purposes. The first purpose, “that ye be not partakers of her sins,” we looked at last week in part 2 of this series. One way in which Roman Catholics sin is by associating themselves with, and lending support to, the corrupt and heretical teachers of the Roman Church-State (RCS). When men support that organization with their time and their money and receive her priests and bishops and popes as if they were Christian teachers, Roman Catholics laymen become guilty of their enormous sins by association (2 John 10). Since the impetus for this series on Rome was yet another Roman Catholic pedophile scandal, this time in Michigan, it was also mentioned that a second way in which Roman Catholics partake in the sins of Rome is by deliberately delivering their children into the hands of a group of known predators, I’m referring here to Roman Catholic priests, who of all have shown themselves the least trustworthy when it comes to care of children. Indeed, so far from being trustworthy are they, that one could reasonably assert that, of all classes of men, Romanist priests pose the greatest threat to children.

Given the shocking scale of the enormities visited by Roman Catholic priests upon the Church’s children – and this, at least for the moment, is leaving aside the Church’s many other abuse scandals, for example, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s sexual abuse of seminarians and the stories now surfacing about nuns who have committed sexual abuse of minors – one wonders how any conscientious parent could elect to leave his children alone with a priest even for a moment. Yet Roman Catholic parents routinely and willingly deliver their children into the arms of those who prey upon them. In doing this, they sin.

Turing now from a review of what we’ve already studied, let us look at the second purpose uttered by the voice from heaven in Revelation 18:4, “that ye receive not of her plagues.”

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Pope in Rome_Pedo

Demonstrator holds up sign in front of Pope Francis during his visit to Ireland, August 2018.  Will Oliver (EFE)

“And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”

    – Revelation 18:4

The headline in the Detroit Free Press was as familiar as it was appalling: “5 Catholic priests charged in Michigan sex abuse investigation.” “Does this never end?,” I thought to myself upon reading it. The answer, it would seem, is no.

Indeed, investigations revealing the horrifying scale of the sex abuse scandals in the Roman Catholic Church-State have become something of a commonplace in recent years. Time would fail me were I to even attempt to cover, if but briefly, the scandals that have occurred just here in America, let alone try to talk about those in other countries.

As I read through the article – please note, the piece in the Detroit Free Press is, in parts, quite graphic, as it contains language from the affidavits connected with the case; in reading them one is reminded of what the Apostle Paul said to the Ephesians when he wrote to them concerning deeds about which it was shameful even to speak – I kept thinking about the passage in Revelation, where the voice from heaven warns God’s people to come out of Mystery Babylon, the Mother of Harlots, that is to say, the Roman Church-State (RCS), “that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that you receive not of her plagues.”

But not only did I think about unspeakable wickedness of the RCS, but also about the thunderous silence that emanates from the pulpits of even Bible believing Protestant churches concerning the predations of Rome against the most vulnerable of her people. If you think I’m overstating the case, as yourself this, When was the last time you heard a sermon from the pulpit about Antichrist, about Mystery Babylon, and about the work these tools of Satan are doing right in front of our faces? When was the last time you hear a Protestant minister publicly point out the sins of the Roman Church-State or warn his flock about the dangers of this false church?

The answer, most likely, is never.

Jesus enjoined his disciples to go into all the world and to teach all the things he had taught them. Paul said he was innocent of the blood of all men, because he did not fail to teach the Ephesians the whole counsel of God. Since part of the whole counsel of God is the Bible’s teaching about Antichrist and about Mystery Babylon, when ministers to fail to teach about these topics, or to teach about them falsely, the necessary conclusion is that they – and I’m taking here not about liberal ministers who long ago abandoned any pretense of teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but those who would be considered conservative and Bible-believing – are blood guilty for their failure to properly instruct both their congregations and the unbelieving world.

Antichrist is alive and well, and the evil fruits of his evil doctrines are splashed across the headlines all over the internet, yet we Christians remain silent. Why is this? Ignorance is likely one reason. But perhaps more than ignorance, it is out of fear that we remain silent. Fear that we will be rejected. Fear that we will give offense. Fear that me will not hear us and will not like us. Fear of losing our jobs and fear of being censored on the internet. Fear that we will be called haters and intolerant. Fear of being banned from Facebook and Twitter and YouTube.

To all this, Jesus says “Fear not.” It is he who is our king, and it is to him that we owe our allegiance. It is he who warned his disciples not to fear those who could kill the body only, that is to say, other men, but to fear him who can destroy body and soul in hell, that is to say, God.

With this in mind, let us take a closer look at today’s Scripture passage, Revelation 8:4, and see how it relates to the horrible headlines of sex abuse in the Roman Church-State that we so often see.

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Crooked Hillary

Hillary Clinton

Eventful times these are. So much so that there’s far more to write about than I could ever hope to adequately address. But hey, there’s no harm in trying. So, let’s get started…

 

Crooked Hillary

I hardly know where to begin when it comes to Mrs. Clinton. She’s an obvious felon. And the best any normal person with her legal baggage could hope for would be a not-too-harsh plea bargain. But when it comes to the preternaturally impervious Hillary Clinton, well, that’s a different story.

One of the most offensive aspects of contemporary American society is the two-tiered justice system. Ordinary Americans can have their lives ruined by a single drug-related felony, while the masters of the universe – or perhaps in Hillary’s case I should say mistress of the universe – can commit all manner of crimes and be rewarded with the highest office in the land.

And almost as if she were going out of the way to rub people’s noses in it, we get a report this past week that four years worth of emails between Hillary and her chief of IT Bryan Pagliano have turned up…..drum roll please…missing! Oh, what a shock!

If you haven’t followed the Clinton email scandal closely, Bryan Pagliano, Clinton’s chief of IT while she was Secretary of State, was the guy who set up the unsecured server on which Hillary stored highly sensitive State Department emails, an act that she undoubtedly knew was illegal. And emails aside, just the act of setting up the server was a felony. As former CIA Officer Scott Uehlinger put it, “The fact that she set up a private server, in and of itself, means she is guilty of a felony right there.”

Nixon only had an 18 minute gap, and that was enough to bring him down. Hillary? She’s got a four year gap. But hardly anyone in the mainstream press cares. As Investors Business Daily reported, “This kind of behavior would normally light a fire under law enforcement – and the press – since these things usually smack of a cover-up. But the mainstream press is asleep at the switch…” Former Department of Justice official Dan Metcalfe commented, “The whole thing stinks to high heavens.”

It’s a good thing that I’m not one of those tinfoil hat wearing wackadoos. Because if I were, I might just begin to think that the Deep State was behind the push for our first woman president…and now that I mention it…

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Creature from JekyllThe Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve, 5th Edition by G. Edward Griffin (Westlake Village, California, 608 pages, 2010), $19.44.

“The most boring question in the world,” announced the accounting professor to my B-School class, “is whether the government should have bailed out the financial system in 2008.” In his eyes, the answer was an obvious yes. End of story. But that struck me as a rather odd stance. For the question, to bailout, or not to bailout? seemed to me to be among the most fascinating topics imaginable in the field of finance and accounting. And in truth, any answer one could give would have to go well beyond finance and accounting, touching upon the basic philosophical disciplines of politics, ethics, and ultimately epistemology. Further, any answer given would go a long way to telling you something about the man himself. So no, it was not a boring question at all. That is, unless you’re interest is in perpetuating the status quo, in which case you would prefer that it not be asked at all.

I have elected to introduce my review of G. Edward Griffin’s The Creature from Jekyll Island [hereafter, the Creature] by way of this personal account, because it illustrates perfectly the sort of close-minded contempt that emanates from the financial mainstream toward anyone who dares question its reigning orthodoxies. Examples of these nostrums are: Central bank issued fiat currency is good, but the gold standard is a barbarous relic, the money supply cannot be left to the free market, it must be a function of a government appointed central bank; banks are not like other businesses, they must be chartered, regulated, and, if needed, bailed out by the government using taxpayer funds. None of these orthodoxies is true, for none can be supported from Scripture. Yet they are accepted by politicians, academics and ordinary folks alike almost without question.

G. Edward Griffin, on the other hand, is a man who does question these orthodoxies, concluding at the very beginning of his book that the Federal Reserve must be abolished. He provides seven reasons for this, namely:

  • It is incapable of accomplishing its stated objectives.
  • It is a cartel operating against the public interest.
  • It is the supreme instrument of usury.
  • It generates our most unfair tax.
  • It encourages war.
  • It destabilizes the economy.
  • It is an instrument of totalitarianism.

The remainder of the book is used to flesh out why these things are so. In Griffin’s words, the book is a who-dunit, which, in the words of USA Daily, “documents an organized and successful attempt to seize control over the U.S. monetary system by powerful American and European families.”

Eccles Building

The Eccles Building, the Washington D.C. headquarters of the Federal Reserve.

 

At this point one may by asking himself, why is it that Christians should care about the obscure workings of the Federal Reserve System [hereafter, the Fed]? Why not just leave banking to the bankers and get on with more important matters? After all, talking about money doesn’t seem very spiritual. And doesn’t the Bible say that money is the root of all evil? Wouldn’t it be best simply to leave the whole matter alone and focus on the Great Commission instead?

Taking these objections in reverse order, let us consider what Christ commanded in the Great Commission. What did Jesus say to his followers? Go into all the world and teach the five fundamentals? No. Christ called his disciples to go into all the nations and to teach, “them to observe all things that I have commanded you.” The Great Commission includes all of Christ’s teachings. And since there is no field of endeavor not covered by Christ’s teachings,, all statements of all men in all areas of study, including banking, finance, and accounting, must be brought back to Scripture and judged by it. Therefore banking is a proper field of Christian study.

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statue of liberty

Statue of Liberty scene from Planet of the Apes.

Civilizational collapse. The very words make the reader sit up and take notice. When I hear them, I tend to think of the barbarian hordes – some of whom, for all I know, may have been my ancestors – sacking Rome. But civilizational collapse is not just about ancient history. For it has been the contention of this blog that we in the West in the early 21st century are living through a civilizational collapse in real time. The West, the civilization born out of the 16th century Protestant Reformation, is in real danger of disappearing altogether. Given birth by the widespread preaching of, and belief in, the Gospel of justification by belief alone in the 16th century, the West has undergone steep decline over the past one hundred plus years.

 

In our own time, there are very few individuals left who hold fast to the two principle doctrines of the Reformation, sola scriptura (the Bible alone is the sole authority for Christian doctrine and practice), and sola fide (salvation is by belief alone). Since Western Civilization was the by-product of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it would stand to reason that when the people of the West reject that Gospel, that the civilization built upon it would fall. And this is exactly what we see happening all around us. Public morals, respect for individual liberty and private property, not to mention the finances of entire nations all are in steep decline.

How does the Christian face an environment such as this? In the US, at any rate, there are many active preppers, individuals who believe in taking steps to protect themselves in the event the current economic and political order should suffer a significant breakdown. I happen to be one of those people.

As a rule, preppers are considered to be a bit of a fringe group and are often dismissed as paranoid wearers of tin-foil hats . But that in itself does not prove them wrong. Just looking at the finances of the Western nations should be enough to put anyone in prepper mode. As I detailed in last week’s post, the financial system and economy of the US are in a very precarious position and may well be poised for an imminent collapse. Take the recent comments of noted investor Jim Rogers, who said that in 2016, “everything is going to get smashed,” as a result of the relentless counterproductive policies pursued by the governments and central banks of the world. “A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself, But the simple pass on and are punished,” says Proverbs. And what are preppers but those who foresee trouble coming and seek to take measures to protect themselves? Given the current state of affairs, far from being paranoid, it seems as though the preppers on the ones showing good sense, while those who deny the gathering storm facing the West and pretend everything is awesome are simpletons whistling past the graveyard.

financial-crisis

Prepping started to get big in the US in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Over the ensuring years, many helpful books have been written on the subject of prepping, and many excellent resources available on the internet that address this issue. It is not the aim of this post to repeat what others already have said, and said better than this author could. No, the aim of this post is to look at what the Bible has to say about prepping. Not so much from the standpoint of “buy this” or “make sure you have enough of that,” but rather from the standpoint of how God works in history, the grace he shows to his people even in the worst of times, and reflect on general principles that we can take from individual cases in Scripture where people were faced with the destruction of their civilization. In particular, I would like to focus on the example of Noah, a man who can fairly be described as history’s preeminent prepper.

God is Not Mocked

Back in the late 90s, the minister of my church said to me in private conversation that if the then new, state-level laws legalizing homosexual marriage were allowed to stand, then God would owe an apology to Sodom and Gomorrah. Strong words, those. Little did we know at the time that, not only would the existing laws in support of gay marriage be allowed to stand, but that gay marriage would one day be declared the law of the land, as occurred in June 2015 with the Supreme Court ruling in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges.

And what shall we say about a nation that so openly mocks the law of God. It is common for Americans to say “God bless America.” But really, why should he? After the Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage, the minister of my current church commented, quite correctly, that America has now placed itself further outside the [preceptive] will of God than at any other time in its history. It seems to me that, considering just the gay marriage issue alone, God would have much more reason to visit destruction on America rather than bless it.

Some may suppose that because hellfire and brimstone did not immediately descend from the heavens and consume the Supreme Court building along with those justices who voted in favor of gay marriage, arrogantly supposing as they did, that they can set aside the eternal law of God, that nothing bad will follow as a result of Obergefell v. Hodges. But I wouldn’t be so sure of that. As the Apostle Paul makes clear, God is not mocked. While it is true that we must all stand before the judgment seat of Christ, it is also true that judgment can come in this life. And Sodom and Gomorrah stand as stark witnesses to the proposition that God will not forever put up with a civilization that so flagrantly mocks his law.

But the sudden and dramatic overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah is not the only Biblical example of God visiting destruction on a civilization due to its gross sinfulness. The destruction of the Canaanites was a consequence of their sinfulness. “But in the fourth generation they [Abraham’s descendents] shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete” (Genesis 15:16), were God’s words to Abraham. God destroyed the Tower of Babel and scattered the people, confusing their language, due to their disobedience.

The experience of Israel in the promised land ended in a similar fashion. Even before Israel entered Canaan, God laid out for the stipulations of his covenant. If the people obeyed, they would receive blessing. If they did not, curses and destruction would follow. As Scripture tells us, Israel was eventually given over to conquerors due to the unfaithfulness of the people. The writer of Chronicles puts it this way,

And the LORD God of their fathers sent warnings to them by His messengers, rising up early and sending them, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place. But they mocked the messengers of God, despised His words, and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against His people, till there was no remedy (2 Chronicles 36:23).

The Old Testament also reports the destruction of the destroyers of Israel and Judah. Both Assyria and Babylon were judged for their iniquities and overthrown.

Civilization-wide judgment is not limited to the Old Testament either. It is also found in the New. In the Olivet discourse, Jesus predicted the judgment that God would visit on Jerusalem in A.D. 70. In Revelation we are shown the coming destruction of Mystery Babylon the Great, the Antichrist system of the papacy, for its many sins.

The deluge

The Deluge by John Martin, 1834.

 

The End of the World As He Knew It

Relative to the subject of this study, I would like to end this brief review of God’s civilizational judgments by discussing his destruction of the world at the time of Noah. Back in the 80s, R.E.M. had a hit song titled It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine). Despite the rather depressive sounding name, it’s actually a pretty catchy tune. And the title really does capture the experience of Noah. After all, here was a man who had never so much as seen rain, being told by God that the world would be destroyed in a flood. Everything would be wiped away.

And why is it that God decided to end all human life save eight people? He doesn’t leave it to our imagination, but rather expressly tells us it was due to the exceeding wickedness of man.

Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So the LORD said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them” (Genesis 6:5-7).

I would like to draw the reader’s attention to two aspects of this passage. First, note well that the destruction of the antediluvian [pre-flood] world was brought about by God. Sometimes people speak of God permitting this or that disaster to occur. But as Gordon Clark argues in God & Evil: The Problem Solved, permission makes no sense in a universe created by, and completely under the control of, God. God himself says, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth,” so it is hardly slander to state that God brought about the destruction. But what is more, the wickedness of man that prompted God to destroy the earth was not some unplanned or unforeseen eventuality, but God caused men to act as they did. God was not the author of their sin, for the wicked men themselves thought and performed evil themselves. But God was the ultimate cause of their doing so.

Second, although God is the ultimate cause of the sinfulness of the antediluvian world, he is not responsible for the sin, those who commit the sin are. God is not responsible for the simple reason that whatever God does is right and good. There is no one to whom he must give account. Put another way, God is Ex Lex, above the law. As sovereign of the universe, it is his prerogative both to will men to be reprobate and to punish them for it.

Conclusion

In his address to the Athenians on Mars Hill, Paul stated the end to which God established nations. Said Paul,

And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us (Acts 17:26, 27).

The intended result of his establishing nations, is that the people seek for him. But when nations fail to do this, and when they, in fact, do quite the opposite, wearying themselves to do evil, it should come as no surprise that God would bring them to an end. And this he has done many times in history, as the Bible makes clear.

It is my contention that Western Civilization has just about run its course. Beginning in earnest in the 19th century, the people of the West first rejected the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the chickens are now coming home to roost. It appears that tough times lay ahead.

I do not write these things as a pessimist. Rather, I believe Christians have every reason to be optimistic about the future. We have the right Man on our side, the Man of God’s own choosing. That said, this does not mean we will not suffer along with everyone else should it turn out that I am right about what the future holds.

As Christians, we are not called to look upon the world with rose colored glasses. We are called to see it in light of the Word of God and to heed its warnings.

Seige of Jerusalem

Detail from the Arch of Titus in Rome showing a scene from the triumphal parade celebrating the Roman general Titus’ sack of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. 

 

In the Olivet Discourse, Jesus warned his hearers to flee to the mountains when they saw Jerusalem surrounded by armies. It would be interesting to know how many took him at his word and got out of town before general Vespasian showed up outside the city walls with his legions.

As Christians, let us be as the prudent man of Proverbs and prepare ourselves for the evil that appears to be coming our way. In so doing, not only will we preserve our lives and the lives of our loved ones, but also position ourselves to speak the truth of the Gospel to a world in desperate need of hearing it.

To be continued


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2015 year in reviewAnother year of blogging has come and gone. And since New Year’s Day represents a convenient opportunity to reflect on the year past as well as look forward to the one ahead, it seemed good to me to summarize 2015’s postings as well as consider where this blog may be headed in 2016.

But before I get to that, thanks are in order. In the first place, I would like to thank the Lord my God. I have written Lux Lucet since 2009, but it has only been since November 2014 that I committed to a regular weekly writing schedule. Writing takes work. And in truth, I wasn’t sure that I would be able to maintain the frequency and quality of writing that I had in mind. But God has been gracious. He has provided me an abundance of interesting and relevant topics to discuss, the necessary time to research and write, and the stamina to make it happen. If there be anything about this blog at all praiseworthy, truly I must say with the reformers, Soli Deo Gloria.

Second, I would like to that the late Dr. John W. Robbins of the Trinity Foundation. It was eight years ago this month that John proposed to me a writing project that would eventually turn into a book titled Imagining A Vain Thing: The Decline and Fall of Knox Seminary. Up until that time, the biggest writing projects I had undertaken were high school and college term papers. But thanks to John’s help as well as the help of current Trinity Foundation president Tom Juodaitis, I was able to see the project through to its completion. This blog is an outgrowth of my experience working with John. You might even say it’s an extended thank you to him, the man whose work has done so much to inspire me.

Third, I would be remiss if I did not extend a sincere thank you to my readers for their support. Were you to ask me why I blog, habitual joker that I am, I’d probably tell you I’m in it for the money. It has always been my prayer that this blog would be used by God to edify his church. But the nature of blogging is such that it can be quite lonely. You sit at your computer and write and publish, but the question remains, What good is any of this doing? In light of that, it is tremendously encouraging to see that my posts are read. Please know that your clicks, comments and likes are greatly appreciated.

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ZambiaGod have mercy on the currency,” read the headline. Curious, I followed the link to an article about the president of Zambia calling for a national day of prayer and fasting to address country’s currency crisis. It turns out that Zambia’s national currency, the Kwacha, has fallen by 45% against the US dollar in 2015, causing Zambians a host of economic difficulty. It is eminently Christian and sensible to call on the Lord in times of trouble The Bible is filled with promises that God will deliver his people if they call upon his name. Typical is Ps. 50:15 which reads, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me. And because it is eminently Christian and sensible to call on the Lord in times of trouble, no Western president or prime minister would ever think of doing it. “We’ve got this,” they say, “no divine help needed.”

Such was not always the case. During the American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln called for a national day of prayer and fasting. But that sort of thing doesn’t fly anymore. In the aftermath of the greatest national disaster of my lifetime – I’m speaking here about the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington D.C. – George Bush encouraged Americans to go to Disney World. What’s worse, he participated in a blasphemous ecumenical prayer service at the National Cathedral in Washington which featured, among others, a female Episcopal bishop, a Rabbi, a Muslim cleric and a Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church-State. Far from being an example of turning to God, this service was a double-minded affront to the Lord Christ Jesus. And because it was double-minded, those who participated had no reason to think they would receive God’s blessing or assistance. The failure of the Global War on Terror stands as a stark testimony to this principle.

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