Posted in catholicism, theology

Some truths about the papacy

By Elizabeth Prata

The Roman Catholic Church is Christian, right? It’s different from us Protestants, but we can learn from them/use some of their rituals/admire their spiritual fathers, right? We can partner with them in moral endeavors, right?

No. The Roman Catholic Church (RCC) is just as false as a Muslim mosque. The Catholic Church is apostate. The Catholic Church is a mission field. Continue reading “Some truths about the papacy”

Posted in discernment, Uncategorized

This is why we still need The Reformation

Over the past twenty or thirty years, a great ecumenical push has occurred where many so-called “evangelical” pastors and leaders have partnered with the Vatican, the Pope, Bishops, or local priests in spiritual endeavors. These men and women have called the Pope a brother, have blurred the doctrinal lines between us, and have betrayed the faith.

This ecumenical move has occurred at the global, national, and local level. After so many years, nearly a generation, people are now used to evangelical leaders accepting and promoting the Catholic Church to varying degrees. Some say that we can partner with the Catholic Church on social endeavors, such as being against abortion, for traditional marriage, or helping the poor. (Russell Moore). Others say outright that the Catholic Church is Christian, just another “stream” of Christianity and we can and should and do borrow heavily from them in teaching our local congregations. (Tim Keller).

Have no fellowship with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. (Ephesians 5:11)

Whether one has gotten on the continuum and partnered with the Roman Catholic Church in a hold your nose, social justice only gingerly sort of way, or is all-in with promoting the RCC as Christian (and thus not a mission field) doing so is wrong and unbiblical. The Catholic Church teaches a different Gospel, a different Jesus, and holds to many unbiblical practices. It is a counterfeit religion that has nothing to do with our Lord.

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14).

We are to make a distinction between the true faith and the counterfeit. Failing to do so fails the commands of Jesus to be a people set apart, and tragically erases an entire mission field from existence.

And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:10, sanctified means set apart).

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. (1 Peter 2:9).

Yet the ecumenical push continues and in fact has made inroads 30 years later. Ravi Zacharias, the world’s most well-known Christian apologist, refuses to draw a line around fundamental and essential doctrines and exclude the RCC. Beth Moore has taught that the RCC is another denomination and also has taught some Catholic Mystical practices.

Jennie Allen is founder of the massively influential and popular IF:gathering, the most popular interdenominational Christian women’s event in years, and writes this about Catholics:

I was talking with my sister yesterday who is struggling with explaining her view of grace to her friend that is Catholic and wants to know. I told her, we are all just doing the best we can to know and understand God with what we have- our individual views of Him will always be growing and changing as we wrestle through scripture and life.

“Our individual views of Him”? No explaining the Gospel? No drawing distinctive lines between the true faith and the false deception of Catholicism? No explanation of grace by faith alone and not salvation by sacraments, tradition, and wrongly interpreted scriptures? Scriptures that were withheld from people for 1000 years before Tyndale translated and unleashed it? A woman whose template for spiritual gatherings and holy conversations is currently used at this many gatherings in the US alone?

And Jennie Allen has the audacity to reply to her own sister on behalf of a Catholic seeker of the true Jesus not the Gospel of saving faith, but that “we’re all just doing the best we can?”

Jen Hatmaker, a ridiculously popular blogger and author wrote this on her Facebook page:

The article over which she was gushing was that the Pope was headed to a prison where, in front of cameras, he will wash 12 inmates’ feet. She makes the deep gulf between the Catholic and the Protestant seem like a joyful jump over to where ministry is cool and rituals and symbols are fun, not actually blasphemous as they are.

Does she forget that millions of faithful evangelical, Protestant pastors preach the true word, minister, and love in the face of criticism and persecution, daily? With nary a camera in sight? What about gushing over those guys?

Here is another reason we need the Reformation to be vital and fresh, always:

Pope Francis is the perfect example of authenticity and humility. He is doing everything right.” Warren then referred to Pope Francis as “our new pope.” ~Rick Warren, ‘Evangelical’ pastor at Saddleback Church.

Rick Warren believes the Reformation was a mistake and a new reformation will eventually bring us all back together.

“The first Reformation actually split Christianity into dozens and then hundreds of different segments. I think this one is actually going to bring them together… Last week I spoke to 4,000 pastors at my church who came from over 100 denominations in over 50 countries….We had Catholic priests, we had Pentecostal ministers, we had Lutheran bishops, we had Anglican bishops, we had Baptist preachers.” Source Rick Warren, The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, 2005.

What the Reformation did was divide those who believed in the Gospel of Jesus Christ from those of Rome perpetuating a false Gospel of works.

And again, Catholicism is not a Christian “denomination.” It is an apostate religion of satan.

Why Rick Warren is important to cite: His church is one of the top 50 megachurches in the US, In 2008 he was invited to give the Inaugural Prayer at the President’s swearing-in and introduced to the world as “America’s Pastor”, and his book Purpose Driven Life was on the bestseller list for 90 weeks and has sold 60 million copies.

Here is another gentleman working hard to retract the Reformation-

Osteen: “I love the fact that he [Pope Francis] has made the church more inclusive.”

After his visit to the Vatican, Osteen said: “You feel that deep reverence and respect for God.”

Why is Osteen important to cite? Lakewood Church has an average weekly attendance of 52,000, and Osteen’s sermons are also televised in more than 100 countries, with an estimated 7 million viewers each week.

Yet another who violates every precept and principle the Reformation stood for:

Billy Graham: asked about the Pope’s upcoming 1979 visit to the US,

The visit of Pope Paul II to the United States is an event of great significance not only for Roman Catholics, but for all Americans – as well as the world… In the short time he has been Pope, John Paul II has become the moral leader of the world. My prayers and the prayer of countless other Protestants will be with him as he makes his journey.

Later, asked about the recent pope’s death (Pope John Paul II, 2005) Billy Graham said:

“I think he’s with the Lord, because he believed. He believed in the Cross. That was his focus throughout his ministry, the Cross, no matter if you were talking to him from personal issue or an ethical problem, he felt that there was the answer to all of our problems, the cross and the resurrection. And he was a strong believer.”

Why is Billy Graham important to cite? He has been THE face of Christianity since 1949, his first Crusade. The first Crusade to be broadcast on television was in 1957, and anyone growing up in the latter half of the twentieth-century will have seen the preacher preaching in Crusade after Crusade. Sadly, he would only compromise Jesus’ Gospel later by forming alliances with Rome, and by denying the exclusivity of Jesus as the only way to salvation.

Warren, Graham, Keller, Hatmaker, Allen, Moore, among many others who should know better, don’t care that thousands of God’s people were murdered by the Catholic Church for daring to preach the true Gospel and express faith in the resurrected Jesus, a Jesus who is the only Head of the Church.

And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, (Ephesians 1:22)

These men and women, and many others I did not cite, are blaspheming against the finished work of Christ.

The doctrinal lines are wide and they run deep. The divide between Catholic and Protestant is eternal and permanent. Thousands of martyrs died to preserve that line, while always inviting and preaching to those on the side of the looming punishment. Unity with falsity doesn’t save. Wiping away the lines of 500 years of blood and persecution by the very church with which they want to unite is perverted and gross.

Lest you think I am too harsh, see what one of very many preachers have said about Rome in their assertion that we must never, ever compromise the Reformation’s values again.

Here is Charles Spurgeon in 1864, from his sermon refuting Baptismal Regeneration (something Billy Graham believes in).

It is a most fearful fact, that in no age since the Reformation has Popery made such fearful strides in England as during the last few years. I had comfortably believed that Popery was only feeding itself upon foreign subscriptions, upon a few titled perverts, and imported monks and nuns. I dreamed that its progress was not real. In fact, I have often smiled at the alarm of many of my brethren at the progress of Popery. But, my dear friends, we have been mistaken, grievously mistaken. It really is an alarming matter to see so many of our countrymen going off to that superstition which as a nation we once rejected, and which it was supposed we should never again receive. I have but to open my eyes a little to foresee ROMANISM rampant everywhere in the future, since its germs are spreading everywhere in the present. I see this coming up everywhere – a belief in ceremony, a resting in ceremony, a veneration for alters, fonts, and Churches – a veneration so profound that we must not venture upon a remark, or straightway of sinners we are chief. Here is the essence and soul of Popery, peeping up under the garb of a decent respect for sacred things.

What would Spurgeon make of today’s evangelical leaders and their acceptance of Rome? No, we need the Reformation. It still matters.

 

Posted in discernment, Uncategorized

Pope Francis believes that the Reformation is over, he’s almost ready to sign public document stating so

THIS is the Christ we love and THIS is the Christ that is preached. Please take two minutes to listen. It’s the backdrop and context for this essay. It’s important.

https://player.vimeo.com/video/158579537?color=a2752e&title=0&byline=0&portrait=0
Shepherds’ Conference Summit on Christology from Grace Community Church on Vimeo.

Since the beginning, satan sends his representatives to pollute and destroy. He began with a serpent and continued with wolves and blossomed his lies into every religion in the world that is not the true faith of the worship of the true Jesus Christ.

Resisting and pointing out idolaters, blasphemers, and wolves has been the business of the Christian since Peter’s day, right through until the moment almost 500 years ago when in Wittenburg Germany, Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door at Castle Church, criticizing various elements of the Catholic dogma as having no foundation in the Bible.

“Pope Francis is convinced that the Reformation is already over”. Source

The attempt to reform the Catholic Church from within proved futile. It ended with a massive split, a gulf between the true Christianity and the false Catholic church. This event is known as The Reformation.

And there the gulf stayed for 450 years. The Protesters became a denomination known as Protestant, and the Catholic stayed Catholic. The gulf seemed fixed and immovable until within the last 40-45 years. John MacArthur noted bridges being built back to Rome in 1973.

More lately, disparate whispers emerged from wide-spread places in Christendom. Masked and wolfish “evangelical” eyes turned toward Rome in increasing volume and quantity. Some evangelicals pilgrimaged there, to kiss the hand that lit the match that burned brethren in former eras. Judases, all.

Most recently, we read in last July’s Catholic Herald that the Pope personally considers the Reformation to be over and is likely about to sign a public document stating so. He has believed this ever since the Lutherans signed the 1999 declaration making clear they no longer disagree over justification by faith. Pope Francis has been pursuing a reversal of the Reformation and reunion with other Protestants ever since. To that end, he has been successful. Now, news emerges of a document that declares the Vatican’s opinion that the Reformation is over. This document, which is not widely known, is called “Declaration of Faith in Unity for Mission.” All it needs is Francis’ signature.

Can Francis overcome decades of antagonism between Catholics and Evangelicals?

Somewhere in Pope Francis’s office is a document that could alter the course of Christian history. It declares an end to hostilities between Catholics and Evangelicals and says the two traditions are now “united in mission because we are declaring the same Gospel”. The Holy Father is thinking of signing the text in 2017, the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, alongside Evangelical leaders representing roughly one in four Christians in the world today.

If you want to know what will make the biggest stride toward the Great Apostasy and who will form the bulk of the greatest false religion on earth, just picture 1.2 billion Catholics with half a billion Pentecostals and Charismatics, along with millions of liberal Evangelicals led by the likes of Rick Warren, Kenneth Copeland and James Robison, Beth Moore, Ann Voskamp, and Rachel Held Evans- all uniting under a false Jesus and declaring a false gospel.

Is the Jesus you’re worshiping “this same Jesus
of Acts 1:11?The Catholic Herald article I quoted above gives quick recent history of the reversal of the Reformation from Pope Francis’ perspective. I recommend reading it. Though many in America have been perplexed by Protestant leaders’ rapid softening toward Rome, from Pope Francis’ perspective it is no surprise, because he is the one behind it.

For example, in 2014 several “evangelical leaders” which included Kenneth Copeland, James Robison (Beth Moore’s mentor) and Geoff Tunnicliffe, along with Bishop Tony Palmer and Pope Francis, met for three hours in the Vatican, decided to agree on their faiths, and drafted a declaration stating so. This is the “Declaration of Faith in Unity for Mission.” The declaration has three parts:

1. the Nicean-Constantinople Creed, which Catholics and evangelicals share;
2. the core of the Catholic-Lutheran declaration of 1999 making clear there is no disagreement over justification by faith;
3. a section asserting that Catholics and evangelicals are now “united in mission because we are declaring the same Gospel,” (according to Gloria.TV, in an article titled Reformation Anniversary: Dialogue Paper Between the Vatican and Evangelicals?)

It’s that third section that is the most astounding. Catholics and Protestants agree that they are declaring the same Gospel? This is huge. Such a declaration, if signed by leaders of both faiths, would effectively be declaring the Reformation is over –  AND that it was a mistake.

The Catholic Herald again, on how Pope Francis closed the seemingly immovable gulf between the faiths-

When Francis wanted to reach out to Evangelicals after he was elected Pope, he didn’t do the obvious things. He didn’t ask the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity to organise a conference or seek advice from the group Evangelicals and Catholics Together in America – arguably the most advanced such dialogue in the world. Instead, he rang his old friend. During a leisurely meeting at the Vatican, [Tony] Palmer recorded a video of the Pontiff on his iPhone.

Designated an “Apostolic Representative for Christian Unity” by Francis, Palmer took the film to a ministers’ conference in Texas organised by prosperity gospel preacher Kenneth Copeland. Palmer introduced the film with what must count as one of the great Christian orations of the 21st century. “Brothers and sisters, Luther’s protest is over,” he said. He told the audibly stunned audience that he was speaking to them “in the spirit of Elijah”, who prepared the way for something much greater than himself.

Francis then proclaimed that “the miracle of unity has begun”. The audience greeted the video with whooping, laughter and a babble of tongues. Copeland summoned Palmer back on stage to record a reply on his iPhone. The video ended with all the ministers – some of whom may have believed the Pope was a false teacher just minutes earlier – raising their hands and addressing Francis in unison with the cry: “Be blessed!”

Still shots from that national meeting below:

“The Spirit of Elijah is the spirit of reconciliation.” Bishop Palmer,
introducing the Pope’s video message. Source.
They’re already united: in satan.
Yes, but which God?
After the message finished, Copeland led American evangelicals
in a prayer to bless the Pope

Now, with the 500th anniversary of the start of the Reformation looming in October 2017, great strides have been made in destroying the visible faith by a satanic reunification and total reversal of the most important religious movement on earth since the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Will Pope Francis publicly sign the ‘Reformation is over’ document? The Catholic Herald thinks so.

Francis hasn’t given any public sign of whether he will sign the declaration. But he has taken steps that seem to prepare the ground for it.

Meanwhile on our own shores, this disappointing ChurchLeaders.com article breathlessly gurgles an undiscerning excitement that Pope Francis will attend the Washington DC Together2016 event this weekend, by video message-

Having the Pope is certainly a bold move on the part of the evangelical leaders of Together 2016, yet one that makes a clear move toward the unity of all Christians in America. (Source)

The author of that article breathlessly continued to state that the whole Pope-Evangelical thing is “pretty cool”.

In one sense, the “leaders” who have been promoting this hellish union with Rome, such as Rick Warren, SBC’s Russell Moore and Ronnie Floyd, Joel Osteen, James Robison, Kenneth Copeland, Ravi Zacharias (is there any ecumenical gatheiring he won’t attend?), Michael W. Smith, Mark Batterson among others, (and most of tho men I just listed will be attending the ecumenical event this weekend), are already united with Rome.

There are only two faiths. The faith with satan at the head and the universal Christian church of saints, led by Jesus Christ. There IS a gulf fixed between the two, and anyone partnering with Rome to declare that they share the same Gospel is not of the faith of Jesus Christ. It’s one, or the other.

This next part is for ladies. Sisters, we have been warning you about the dangers of many of these liberal/mystical/ecumenical “teachers” for a long time, many of whom are participating in the upcoming Together2016 event this weekend. These are women such as Lindsey Nobles, Jennie Allen, (IF:gathering,) Christine Caine, (Propel Women, A21 campaign), Ann Voskamp (Romantic Panentheist and Mystical Romanticist).

Again and again not to partake of the evil fruit these women produce. That these Pope-friendly women are partnering at an ecumenical event, buying into the Pope’s unification agenda, is to turn their backs on millions of martyrs who cried out to the Lord for mercy on their tormenters. It’s to ignore the dark history where the shining Gospel was twisted, perverted, and suppressed- usually at the end of a sword. It should be the clarion signal that these women have nothing to offer you, nothing, not even one single tiny seemingly insignificant scripture quote you repeat on Facebook. Do not follow these women.

Catholic Philly reports that Lead organizer of Together 2016 and founder of PULSE, a youth campus ministry, Nick Hall, had a two-hour meeting with the pope on June 9. Hall told CNS he spoke to the pope about the event and spent time in prayer with him. Together2016 is at root, a Popish event, a ploy with an antichrist agenda. Don’t buy it and avoid every single person associated with it.

Christianity is therefore the absolute religion, the only, essential, true religion. It tolerates no other religions as of almost equal worth and worthiness alongside itself. It is, according to its nature, intolerant, even as the truth at all times is and must be intolerant with respect to the untruth. It will not be satisfied with being the first of the religions, but it claims to be the only, true, full religion, which has absorbed and fulfilled all that is true and good in other religions. Christ is not a man alongside of others, but He is the Son of Man, who be the resurrection was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of Holiness, and received from the Father a name above every name, so that in that name every knee should bow and every tongue confess, that He is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Herman Bavinck, The Sacrifice of Praise, p. 67

The closing of the gap between (falsely) professing Protestant and Catholic is rapidly upon us. Yet the true Protestant is still protesting. We are still declaring the faith in THIS SAME JESUS (Acts 1:11) who ministered and came to seek and save the lost. True Protestants know that our salvation is-

  • by faith alone. Sola Fide,
  • by Scripture alone. Sola Scriptura,
  • through Christ alone. Solus Christus,
  • by grace alone. Sola Gratia,

and that the glory is

  • glory to God alone. Soli Deo Gloria.