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Posts Tagged ‘Historicism’

Martin Luther as Hercules Germanicus by Hans Holbein, 1523. “In the picture, Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, William of Ockham, Duns Scotus and Nicholas of Lyra already lay bludgeoned to death at his feet and the German inquisitor, Jacob van Hoogstraaten was about to receive his fatal stroke. Suspended from a ring in Luther’s nose was the figure of Pope Leo X,” The Reformation Room.

There is no other Head of the Church but the Lord Jesus Christ: nor can the Pope of Rome, in any sense be head thereof; but is that Antichrist, that man of sin and son of perdition, that exalteth himself in the Church against Christ, and all that is called God.

  • Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 25.6

“I have no idea who Antichrist is.”  I don’t remember anything else about the sermon.  I don’t even recall the name of the man who preached it.  But I do remember it was on a Sunday morning in December 2006 that I heard those words, “I have no idea who Antichrist is,” come from the pulpit of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. 

I case you’re wondering, no, it wasn’t D. James Kennedy who made that comment.  It was a guest preacher, whose name escapes me.

It’s just as well I don’t recall the man’s name who uttered those words.  For it seems to me that what he said that Sunday could well be said by most of the professing reformed church, both in 2006 and in 2021.  No one, it seems, has any idea who Antichrist is. 

It’s a mystery wrapped in an enigma, to borrow a turn of phrase from Winston Churchill.  Or at least that’s how it seems to most Christians today. 

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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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