THE FINAL CRISIS AND DELIVERANCE

 

FOREWORD

 

The object of this compilation has been to bring together from the several Ellen G. White sources a few of the striking statements regarding the future experience of the people of God.  The limits of space of this compilation make it impossible  to include all that might be desirable.  While an earnest effort has been made to assemble the statements so as to present an unfolding picture of events in their order, it is not possible to fix positively and with absolute certainty the exact relationship of certain of the events, as there may be some overlapping. This is particularly true of the time of the sounding of the Loud Cry.  We refer the reader to the connected accounts given in 'Early Writings' and more fully in 'The Great Controversy Between Christ And Satan'.

 

- Robert Leo Odom

Compiler

 

 

Published by THE SOUTHERN PUBLISHING ASSOCIATION

Nashville 8, Tennessee

Printed in U.S.A.

 

 

THE FINAL CRISIS AND DELIVERANCE

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TWO GREAT CLASSES FORMED BY THE FINAL TEST-THE SABBATH -- The Sabbath will be the great test of loyalty, for it is the point of truth especially controverted. When the final test shall be brought to bear upon men, then the line of distinction will be drawn between those who serve God and those who serve Him not. While the observance of the false sabbath in compliance with the law of the state, contrary to the fourth commandment, will be an avowal of allegiance to a power that is in opposition to God, the keeping of the true Sabbath, in obedience to God's law, is an evidence of loyalty to the Creator. While one class, by accepting the sign of submission to earthly powers, receive the mark of the beast, the other choosing the token of allegiance to divine authority, receive the seal of God. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 605

 

MORE LIGHT WILL COME AS THE SCROLL UNROLLS -- The light we have received upon the third angel's message is the true light. The mark of the beast is exactly what it has been proclaimed to be. Not all in regard to this matter is yet understood, nor will it be understood until the unrolling of the scroll; but a most solemn work is to be accomplished in our world. -Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 6, p. 17; Vol. 8 p. 159

 

 

 

PEOPLE WILL UNITE UNDER ONE HEAD -- As we approach the last crisis, it is of vital moment that harmony and unity exist among the Lord's instrumentalities. The world is filled with storm and war and variance. Yet under one head--the Papal power--the people will unite to oppose God in the person of His witnesses. -Testimonies for the Church,  Vol. 7, p. 182.

 

Pope Benedict XVI at the United Nations. 

 

WHAT THE MARK OF THE BEAST IS -- The sign, or seal, of God is revealed in the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath, the Lord's memorial of creation. "The Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you." (Exodus 31:12, 13). Here the Sabbath is clearly designated as a sign between God and His people.

 

The mark of the beast is the opposite of this--the observance of the first day of the week. This mark distinguishes those who acknowledge the supremacy of the Papal authority from those who acknowledge the authority of God. -Idem, Vol. 8 p. 117.

 

(In comment on Revelation 14:9-12): John was called to behold a people distinct from those who worship the Beast or his image by keeping the first day of the week.  The observance of this day is the mark of the beast. -Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, p. 133

 

 

THE UNIVERSAL EXALTATION OF SUNDAY WILL BE THE LAST ACT IN THE DRAMA -- "The substitution of the laws of men for the law of God, the exaltation, by merely human authority, of Sunday in place of the Bible Sabbath, is the last act in the drama. When this substitution becomes universal, God will reveal himself. When the laws of men are exalted above the laws of God, when the powers of this earth try to force men to keep the first day of the week, know that the time has come for God to work.  He will arise in majesty and will shake terribly the earth. He will come out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the world for their iniquity." - Article "The Great Standard of Righteousness" in The Review and Herald, Vol. 78, No 17 (April 21,1901), p. 257. (See also Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 7, p. 141).

 

NOTE: It will be the universal, not a local or national, substitution that will bring the climax to the final crisis and will mark the hour when God shall interpose to deliver his people.  Let this stand out as the great climactic day in the future toward which the steps presented in this study are to leads us.

 

 

PROTESTANTISM WILL FORM A CONFEDERACY WITH THE PAPACY -- The professed Protestant world will form a confederacy with the man of sin, and the church and the world will be in corrupt harmony.  Here the great crisis is coming upon the world.  The scriptures teach that Popery is to regain its lost supremacy, and that the fires of persecution will be rekindled through the time-serving concessions of the so-called Protestant world. - Article "Our Present Dangers" in the Daily Bulletin of the General Conference, Vol. 4, No. 19 (April 13, 1891), p. 257.

 

THE PROTESTANTS OF THE UNITED STATES WILL BE THE FOREMOST ACTORS -- 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.

 

A NATIONAL SUNDAY LAW WILL BE THE ACT BY WHICH PROTESTANTS WILL JOIN HANDS WITH THE PAPACY -- When our nation 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. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 712.

 

PROTESTANTISM IS NOW FORMING THE CONFEDERACY WITH POPERY -- Protestantism is now reaching hands across the gulf to clasp hands with the Papacy, and a confederacy is being formed to trample out of sight the Sabbath of the fourth commandment; and the man of sin, who, at the instigation of Satan, instituted the spurious sabbath, this child of the Papacy, will be exalted to take the place of God - An Appeal to Ministers and Conference Committees, p. 38. (Printed by the General Conference in 1892)

 

PROTESTANT GOVERNMENTS WILL PARTICIPATE -- The Protestant governments will reach a strange pass.  They will be converted to the world.  They will also, in their separation from God, work to make falsehood and apostasy from God the law of the nation. - Article "Perilous Times" in The General Conference Bulletin, Vol. 3, No. 5 (first quarter, 1900), p. 114.

 

HOW THE IMAGE TO THE BEAST WILL BE FORMED -- In order for the United States to form an image of the beast, the religious power must so control the civil government that the authority of the state will also be employed by the church to accomplish her own ends. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 443.

 

WHEN THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST WILL BE FORMED : When the leading churches of the United States, uniting upon such points of doctrine as are held by them in common, shall influence the state to enforce their decrees and to sustain their institutions, then Protestant America will have formed an image of the Roman hierarchy, and the infliction of civil penalties upon dissenters will inevitably result. - Idem, p. 445 (See also The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 4, p. 278)

 

 

WHAT THE IMAGE TO THE BEAST WILL BE : The "image to the beast" represents that form of apostate Protestantism which will be developed when the Protestant churches shall seek the aid of the civil power for the enforcement of their dogmas. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 445.

 

[UK Prime Minister Tony Blair and the Pope.]

 

Only by changing God's law could the Papacy exalt itself above God; whoever should understandingly keep the law as thus changed would be giving supreme honor to that power by which the change was made. Such an act of obedience to Papal laws would be a mark of allegiance to the Pope in the place of God. -Idem, p. 446.

 

[ US President George W. Bush and Pope Benedict XVI ]

 

HOW THE WORSHIP OF THE BEAST AND HIS IMAGE WILL BE EFFECTED -- The enforcement of Sunday-keeping on the part of Protestant churches is an enforcement of the worship of the Papacy--of the beast. Those who, understanding the claims of the fourth commandment, choose to observe the false instead of the true Sabbath are thereby paying homage to that power by which alone it is commanded. But in the very act of enforcing a religious duty by secular power, the churches would themselves form an image to the beast; hence the enforcement of Sunday-keeping in the United States would be an enforcement of the worship of the beast and his image. - Idem, pp. 448-9.

 

WHEN THE MARK OF THE BEAST WILL BE RECEIVED -- Christians of past generations observed the Sunday, supposing that in so doing they were keeping the Bible Sabbath; and there are now true Christians in every church, not excepting the Roman Catholic communion, who honestly believe that Sunday is the Sabbath of divine appointment. God accepts their sincerity of purpose and their integrity before Him. But when Sunday observance shall be enforced by law, and the world shall be enlightened concerning the obligation of the true Sabbath, then whoever shall transgress the command of God, to obey a precept which has no higher authority than that of Rome, will thereby honor Popery above God. He is paying homage to Rome and to the power which enforces the institution ordained by Rome. He is worshipping the beast and his image. As men then reject the institution which God has declared to be the sign of His authority, and honor in its stead that which Rome has chosen as the token of her supremacy, they will thereby accept the sign of allegiance to Rome--"the mark of the beast." And it is not until the issue is thus plainly set before the people, and they are brought to choose between the commandments of God and the commandments of men, that those who continue in transgression will receive "the mark of the beast." –Idem, p. 449. (See also pp. 604-5).

 

 

[See also p. 604-6 Great Controversy, 1911 ed.:

 

Fearful is the issue to which the world is to be brought. The powers of earth, uniting to war against the commandments of God, will decree that "all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond" (Revelation 13:16), shall conform to the customs of the church by the observance of the false sabbath. All who refuse compliance will be visited with civil penalties, and it will finally be declared that they are deserving of death. On the other hand, the law of God enjoining the Creator's rest day demands obedience and threatens wrath against all who transgress its precepts.

 

  [ German Chancellor Angela Merkel ]

 

With the issue thus clearly brought before him, whoever shall trample upon God's law to obey a human enactment receives the mark of the beast; he accepts the sign of allegiance to the power which he chooses to obey instead of God. The warning from heaven is: "If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation." -Revelation 14:9, 10.

 

But not one is made to suffer the wrath of God until the truth has been brought home to his mind and conscience, and has been rejected. There are many who have never had an opportunity to hear the special truths for this time. The obligation of the fourth commandment has never been set before them in its true light. He who reads every heart and tries every motive will leave none who desire a knowledge of the truth, to be deceived as to the issues of the controversy. The decree is not to be urged upon the people blindly. Everyone is to have sufficient light to make his decision intelligently.

 

The Sabbath will be the great test of loyalty, for it is the point of truth especially controverted. When the final test shall be brought to bear upon men, then the line of distinction will be drawn between those who serve God and those who serve Him not. While the observance of the false sabbath in compliance with the law of the state, contrary to the fourth commandment, will be an avowal of allegiance to a power that is in opposition to God, the keeping of the true Sabbath, in obedience to God's law, is an evidence of loyalty to the Creator. While one class, by accepting the sign of submission to earthly powers, receive the mark of the beast, the other choosing the token of allegiance to divine authority, receive the seal of God.

 

Heretofore those who presented the truths of the third angel's message have often been regarded as mere alarmists. Their predictions that religious intolerance would gain control in the United States, that church and state would unite to persecute those who keep the commandments of God, have been pronounced groundless and absurd. It has been confidently declared that this land could never become other than what it has been--the defender of religious freedom. But as the question of enforcing Sunday observance is widely agitated, the event so long doubted and disbelieved is seen to be approaching, and the third message will produce an effect which it could not have had before. ]

 

 

A SUNDAY LAW IN FREE AMERICA -- The dignitaries of church and state will unite to bribe, persuade, or compel all classes to honor the Sunday. The lack of divine authority will be supplied by oppressive enactments. Political corruption is destroying love of justice and regard for truth; and even in free America, rulers and legislators, in order to secure public favor, will yield to the popular demand for a law enforcing Sunday observance. Liberty of conscience, which has cost so great a sacrifice, will no longer be respected. In the soon-coming conflict we shall see exemplified the prophet's words: "The dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." (Revelation 12:17). - Idem, p. 592

 

NATIONAL RUIN WILL FOLLOW NATIONAL APOSTASY -- When our nation, in its legislative councils, shall enact laws to bind the consciences of men in regard to their religious privileges [Note: something expressly forbidden by the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution], enforcing Sunday observance, and bringing oppressive power to bear against those who keep the seventh-day Sabbath, the law of God will, to all intents and purposes, be made void in our land, and national apostasy will be followed by national ruin. - Article "David's Prayer" in The Review and Herald, Vol. 65, No. 5 (December 18, 1888), p. 785.

 

It is at the time of national apostasy, when acting on the policy of Satan, the rulers of the land will rank themselves on the side of the man of sin - it is then the measure of guilt is full; the national apostasy is the signal for national ruin. - Article "Our Present Dangers" in the Daily Bulletin of the General Conference, Vol. 4, No. 19 (April 13, 1891), p. 259.

 

The people of the United States have been a favored people; but when they restrict religious liberty, surrender Protestantism, and give countenance to Popery, the measure of their guilt will be full, and 'national apostasy' will be registered in the banks of heaven. The result of this apostasy will be national ruin. - Article "Results of Casting Away the Law of God" in The Review and Herald, Vol. 70, No. 18 (May 2, 1893), p. 274.

 

WHEN OUR NATION'S CUP WILL BE FULL -- By the decree enforcing the institution of the papacy in violation of the law of God, our nation will disconnect herself fully from righteousness. -Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 451.

 

THE APOSTACY WILL BE A SIGN THAT PROBATION IS ABOUT TO CLOSE -- As the approach of the Roman armies was a sign to the disciples of the impending destruction of Jerusalem, so may this apostasy be a sign to us that the limit of God's forbearance is reached, that the measure of our nation's iniquity is full, and that the angel of mercy is about to take her flight, never to return. -Idem, Vol. 5, p. 451

 

 LOUD CRY SOUNDED DURING STORM OF PERSECUTION -- when the storm of persecution really breaks upon us, the true sheep will hear the true Shepherd's voice. Self-denying efforts will be put forth to save the lost, and many who have strayed from the fold will come back to follow the great Shepherd. . . .

 

Thus will the truth be brought into practical life, and thus will be answered the prayer of Christ, uttered just before His humiliation and death: "That they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us: that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me." John 17:21. The love of Christ, the love of our brethren, will testify to the world that we have been with Jesus and learned of Him. Then will the message of the third angel swell to a loud cry, and the whole earth will be lightened with the glory of the Lord. - Testimonies for the Church,  Vol. 6, p. 401

 

THE SABBATH WILL BE PROCLAIMED MORE FULLY WHEN THE TROUBLE COMMENCES -- At the commencement of the time of trouble, we were filled with the Holy Ghost as we went forth and proclaimed the Sabbath more fully. - Early Writings, p. 33

 

(In a later communication, Mrs White explained more fully the statement mentioned in the paragraph above, saying):

 

The commencement of the time of trouble here mentioned, does not refer to the time when the plagues shall begin to be poured out, but to a short period just before they are poured out, while Christ is in the sanctuary.  At that time, while the work of salvation is closing, trouble will be coming on the earth, and the nations will be angry, yet held in check so as not to prevent the work of the third angel. At that time the 'latter rain,' or refreshing from the presence of the Lord, will come, to give power to the loud voice of the third angel, and prepare the saints to stand in the period when the seven last plagues shall be poured out. - Idem, pp. 85-6.

 

THE DATE OF THE CLOSE OF PROBATION HAS NOT BEEN REVEALED -- We are to bear the third angel's message to the world, warning men against the worship of the beast and his image, and directing them to take their places in the ranks of those who 'keep the commandments of God, and have the faith of Jesus. -Revelation 14:12  God has not revealed to us the time when this message will close, or when probation will have an end.  Those things that are revealed we shall accept for ourselves and for our children; but let us not seek to know that which has been kept secret in the councils of the Almighty.  It is our duty to watch and work and wait, to labor every moment for the souls of men that are ready to perish. - Article "Consequences of Adam's Sin a Warning to Men" in The Review and Herald, Vol. 71, No. 40 (October 9, 1894), pp. 625-6.

 

A NATIONAL SUNDAY LAW WILL BE THE SIGNAL FOR GOD'S PEOPLE TO LEAVE THE -- As the siege of Jerusalem by the Roman armies was the signal for flight to the Judean Christians, so the assumption of power on the part of our nation in the decree enforcing the Papal sabbath will be a warning to us. It will then be time to leave the large cities, preparatory to leaving the smaller ones for retired homes in secluded places among the mountains. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 465

 

THEN SHALL BE SEEN THE MARVELOUS WORKING OF SATAN -- 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 marvellous working of Satan and that the end is near. –Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 451.

 

Note: The marvelous working of Satan with great signs and lying wonders through spiritism is foretold in Matthew 24:24; in 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12; and Revelation 13:13; 16:14

 

 

EVERY COUNTRY ON THE GLOBE WILL FOLLOW THE EXAMPLE OF THE UNITED STATES -- Foreign nations will follow the example of the United States. Though she leads out, yet the same crisis will come upon our people in all parts of the world. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 6, p. 395

 

"As America the land of religious liberty, shall unite with the Papacy in forcing the conscience and compelling men to honor the false sabbath, the people of every country on the globe will be led to follow her example. - Idem, p. 18. (See also a testimony in The General Conference Bulletin, Vol. 5, No. 1 [January 27-28, 1893], p. 16).

 

In both the Old and the New World, the Papacy will receive homage in the honor paid to the Sunday institution, that rests solely upon the authority of the Roman Church. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 579.

 

[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. - p. 588, The Great Controversy ]

 

 

WHEN THE CUP OF THE NATION WILL BE FULL -- God keeps a record with the nations: the figures are swelling against them in the books of heaven; and when it shall have become a law that the transgression of the first day of the week shall be met with punishment, then their cup will be full. - Article "The Government of God" in The Review and Herald, Vol. 63, No. 10 (March 9, 1886), p. 146.

 

WHEN THE GREAT CRISIS WILL COME -- This crisis will be reached when the nations shall unite in making void God's law. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 524.

 

THE UNION WILL BE SEEN AS A GRAND MOVE FOR THE CONVERSION OF THE WORLD -- Papists, Protestants, and worldlings 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. - (p. 588, Ch. 36, Great Controversy)

 

STRICTER SUNDAY OBSERVANCE -- It will be declared that men are offending God by the violation of the Sunday sabbath; that this sin has brought calamities which will not cease until Sunday observance shall be strictly enforced; and that those who present the claims of the fourth commandment, thus destroying reverence for Sunday, are troublers of the people, preventing their restoration to divine favor and temporal prosperity.

 

DEMONS WILL SECOND THE TESTIMONY OF RELIGIOUS LEADERS -- The miracle-working power manifested through spiritualism will exert its influence against those who choose to obey God rather than men. Communications from the spirits will declare that God has sent them to convince the rejecters of Sunday of their error, affirming that the laws of the land should be obeyed as the law of God. They will lament the great wickedness in the world and second the testimony of religious teachers that the degraded state of morals is caused by the desecration of Sunday. Great will be the indignation excited against all who refuse to accept their testimony.

 

THE FAITHFUL WILL BE DECLARED ENEMIES OF SOCIETY -- While Satan seeks to destroy those who honor God's law, he will cause them to be accused as lawbreakers, as men who are dishonoring God and bringing judgments upon the world.

 

Those who honor the Bible Sabbath will be denounced as enemies of law and order, as breaking down the moral restraints of society, causing anarchy and corruption, and calling down the judgments of God upon the earth. Their conscientious scruples will be pronounced obstinacy, stubbornness, and contempt of authority. They will be accused of disaffection toward the government. Ministers who deny the obligation of the divine law will present from the pulpit the duty of yielding obedience to the civil authorities as ordained of God. In legislative halls and courts of justice, commandment keepers will be misrepresented and condemned. A false coloring will be given to their words; the worst construction will be put upon their motives.

 

 

CALAMITIES WILL BE CHARGED TO GOD'S PEOPLE -- I saw the sword, famine, pestilence, and great confusion in the land.  The wicked thought that we had brought the judgements upon them, and they rose up and took counsel to rid the earth of us, thinking that then the evil would be stayed. - Early Writings, pp. 33, 34.

 

 A World Union of Church and State

A DEATH DECREE WILL BE ISSUED BY THE UNITED POWERS OF EARTH -- The powers of earth, uniting to war against the commandments of God, will decree that "all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond" (Revelation 13:16), shall conform to the customs of the church by the observance of the false sabbath. All who refuse compliance will be visited with civil penalties, and it will finally be declared that they are deserving of death. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 604.

 

IT WILL BE A UNIVERSAL DEATH DECREE -- Especially will the wrath of man be aroused against those who hallow the Sabbath of the fourth commandment; and at last a universal decree  will denounce these as deserving of death. - Prophets and Kings, p. 512.

 

WORLD LEADERS WILL CONSULT TOGETHER AND ISSUE THE DECREE -- I saw the saints leaving the cities and villages, and associating together in companies, and living in the most solitary places. Angels provided them food and water, while the wicked were suffering from hunger and thirst. Then I saw the leading men of the earth consulting together, and Satan and his angels busy around them. I saw a writing, copies of which were scattered in different parts of the land, giving orders that unless the saints should yield their peculiar faith, give up the Sabbath, and observe the first day of the week, the people were at liberty after a certain time to put them to death. - Early Writings, p. 282.

 

Note: Thus "a certain time" will elapse between the date of publication of the death decree and the date of its execution.  The following passages bear out this thought.

 

WHAT THE DEATH DECREE WILL DEMAND -- The decree will go forth that they must disregard the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, and honor the first day, or lose their lives. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 1, pp. 353-4.

 

 

A SIMILAR COURSE WILL BE PURSUED IN BOTH THE OLD AND THE NEW WORLD -- As the Sabbath has become the special point of controversy throughout Christendom, and religious and secular authorities have combined to enforce the observance of the Sunday, the persistent refusal of a small minority to yield to the popular demand will make them objects of universal execration. It will be urged that the few who stand in opposition to an institution of the church and a law of the state ought not to be tolerated; that it is better for them to suffer than for whole nations to be thrown into confusion and lawlessness. . . .

This argument will appear conclusive; and a decree will finally be issued against those who hallow the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, denouncing them as deserving of the severest punishment and giving the people liberty, after a certain time, to put them to death. Romanism in the Old World and apostate Protestantism in the New will pursue a similar course toward those who honor all the divine precepts. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, pp. 615-6.

 

  [Jean Paul II-UEO]

 

THE DEATH DECREE WILL BE ISSUED AFTER THE CLOSE OF PROBATION -- I saw that the four angels would hold the four winds until Jesus' work was done in the sanctuary, and then will come the seven last plagues. These plagues enraged the wicked against the righteous; they thought that we had brought the judgments of God upon them, and that if they could rid the earth of us, the plagues would then be stayed. A decree went forth to slay the saints, which caused them to cry day and night for deliverance. This was the time of Jacob's trouble. - Early Writings, pp. 36-7.

 

NOTE: Note that the death decree will be issued after probation shall have closed, and after the seven last plagues shall have begun to be poured out upon the earth.  This seems to be implied in Revelation 16:5, 6, Can we, then, wait until we see these things happen before we begin to get ready for the end? (See Matthew 24:42, 44).

 

 

THEN THE TIME OF JACOB'S TROUBLE FOR GOD'S PEOPLE WILL BEGIN -- The people of God will then be plunged into those scenes of affliction and distress described by the prophet as the time of Jacob's trouble. - Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 451; The Great Controversy, p. 616 (Copied from G.C.)

 

NOTE: The time of Jacob's Trouble is described in Jeremiah 30:5-7

 

  [ Trilateral Commission & Pope John Paul II ]

 

A SIMULTANEOUS MOVE WILL BE PLANNED  -- When the protection of human laws shall be withdrawn from those who honor the law of God, there will be, in different lands, a simultaneous movement for their destruction. (Perhaps like the St Bartholemew's Day Massacre in France in 1572 ?)  As the time appointed in the decree draws near, the people will conspire to root out the hated sect. It will be determined to strike in one night a decisive blow, which shall utterly silence the voice of dissent and reproof.  - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 635.

 

NOTE: Here it is said that it will be at night that the death decree will go into effect.  According to the civil law, the legal day begins at midnight.  Hence we may suppose that the date for the execution of this decree will begin at midnight.  We shall note later in this study that it will be at midnight that God will manifest his power for the deliverance of his people.

 

THE DEATH DECREE WILL BE ANTICIPATED BY SOME -- Though a general decree has fixed the time when commandment keepers may be put to death, their enemies will in some cases anticipate the decree, and before the time specified, will endeavor to take their lives. But none can pass the mighty guardians stationed about every faithful soul. Some are assailed in their flight from the cities and villages; but the swords raised against them break and fall powerless as a straw. Others are defended by angels in the form of men of war. - Idem, p. 631.

In some places, before the time for the decree to be executed, the wicked rushed upon the saints to slay them; but angels in the form of men of war fought for them. - Early Writings, p. 283.

 

GOD'S PEOPLE WILL BE ATTACKED AT HOME AND WHILE IN FLIGHT -- In the time of trouble we all fled from the cities and villages, but were pursued by the wicked, who entered the houses of the saints with a sword. They raised the sword to kill us, but it broke, and fell as powerless as a straw. - Early Writings, p. 34.

 

God would not suffer the wicked to destroy those who were expecting translation and who would not bow to the decree of the beast or receive his mark. I saw that if the wicked were permitted to slay the saints, Satan and all his evil host, and all who hate God, would be gratified. And oh, what a triumph it would be for his satanic majesty to have power, in the last closing struggle, over those who had so long waited to behold Him whom they loved! Those who have mocked at the idea of the saints' going up will witness the care of God for His people and behold their glorious deliverance.

 

As the saints left the cities and villages, they were pursued by the wicked, who sought to slay them. But the swords that were raised to kill God's people broke and fell as powerless as a straw. - Idem, pp. 284-5.

 

SOME OF THE FAITHFUL WILL BE IMPRISONED - As the decree issued by the various rulers of Christendom against commandment keepers shall withdraw the protection of government and abandon them to those who desire their destruction, the people of God will flee from the cities and villages and associate together in companies, dwelling in the most desolate and solitary places. Many will find refuge in the strongholds of the mountains. . . .

But many of all nations and of all classes, high and low, rich and poor, black and white, will be cast into the most unjust and cruel bondage. The beloved of God pass weary days, bound in chains, shut in by prison bars, sentenced to be slain, some apparently left to die of starvation in dark and loathsome dungeons. No human ear is open to hear their moans; no human hand is ready to lend them help. . . .

Though enemies may thrust them into prison, yet dungeon walls cannot cut off the communication between their souls and Christ. One who sees their every weakness, who is acquainted with every trial, is above all earthly powers; and angels will come to them in lonely cells, bringing light and peace from heaven. - The Great Controversy, pp. 626-7.

 

THE WICKED WILL BE URGED ON BY HOSTS OF DEMONS -- They [God's people] seemed to be surrounded by the wicked inhabitants of the earth. Every appearance was against them. . . .

But if their eyes could have been opened, they would have seen themselves surrounded by angels of God. Next came the multitude of the angry wicked, and next a mass of evil angels, hurrying on the wicked to slay the saints. But before they could approach God's people, the wicked must first pass this company of mighty, holy angels. This was impossible. The angels of God were causing them to recede and also causing the evil angels who were pressing around them to fall back.

 

 It was an hour of fearful, terrible agony to the saints. Day and night they cried unto God for deliverance. To outward appearance, there was no possibility of their escape. The wicked had already begun to triumph, crying out, "Why doesn't your God deliver you out of our hands? Why don't you go up and save your lives?" But the saints heeded them not. . . .

The angels, faithful to their trust, continued their watch. . . . The time had nearly come when He was to manifest His mighty power and gloriously deliver His saints. - Early Writings, pp. 283-4.

 

THE HOUR OF DELIVERANCE -- When the defiance of the law of Jehovah shall be almost universal, when His people shall be pressed in affliction by their fellow men, God will interpose.  The fervent prayers of His people will be answered. - Article "Perilous Times" in The General Conference Bulletin, Vol. 3, No. 5 (1st quarter, 1900), pp. 113-4.

 

The people of God--some in prison cells, some hidden in solitary retreats in the forests and the mountains--still plead for divine protection, while in every quarter companies of armed men, urged on by hosts of evil angels, are preparing for the work of death. It is now, in the hour of utmost extremity, that the God of Israel will interpose for the deliverance of His chosen. - The Great Controversy between Christ and Satan, p. 635.

 

DELIVERANCE WILL COME AT MIDNIGHT -- With shouts of triumph, jeering, and imprecation, throngs of evil men are about to rush upon their prey, when, lo, a dense blackness, deeper than the darkness of the night, falls upon the earth. Then a rainbow, shining with the glory from the throne of God, spans the heavens and seems to encircle each praying company. The angry multitudes are suddenly arrested. Their mocking cries die away. The objects of their murderous rage are forgotten. With fearful forebodings they gaze upon the symbol of God's covenant and long to be shielded from its overpowering brightness.

 

By the people of God a voice, clear and melodious, is heard, saying, "Look up," and lifting their eyes to the heavens, they behold the bow of promise. The black, angry clouds that covered the firmament are parted, and like Stephen they look up steadfastly into heaven and see the glory of God and the Son of man seated upon His throne. In His divine form they discern the marks of His humiliation; and from His lips they hear the request presented before His Father and the holy angels: "I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am." (John 17:24). Again a voice, musical and triumphant, is heard, saying: "They come! they come! holy, harmless, and undefiled. They have kept the word of My patience; they shall walk among the angels;" and the pale, quivering lips of those who have held fast their faith utter a shout of victory.

 

It is at midnight that God manifests His power for the deliverance of His people. The sun appears, shining in its strength. Signs and wonders follow in quick succession. The wicked look with terror and amazement upon the scene, while the righteous behold with solemn joy the tokens of their deliverance. Everything in nature seems turned out of its course. The streams cease to flow. Dark, heavy clouds come up and clash against each other. In the midst of the angry heavens is one clear space of indescribable glory, whence comes the voice of God like the sound of many waters, saying: "It is done." (Revelation 16:17).

 

That voice shakes the heavens and the earth. There is a mighty earthquake, "such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great." Verses 17, 18. The firmament appears to open and shut. The glory from the throne of God seems flashing through. The mountains shake like a reed in the wind, and ragged rocks are scattered on every side. There is a roar as of a coming tempest. The sea is lashed into fury. There is heard the shriek of a hurricane like the voice of demons upon a mission of destruction. The whole earth heaves and swells like the waves of the sea. Its surface is breaking up. Its very foundations seem to be giving way. Mountain chains are sinking. Inhabited islands disappear. The seaports that have become like Sodom for wickedness are swallowed up by the angry waters. Babylon the great has come in remembrance before God, "to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath." Great hailstones, every one "about the weight of a talent," are doing their work of destruction. Verses 19, 21. The proudest cities of the earth are laid low. The lordly palaces, upon which the world's great men have lavished their wealth in order to glorify themselves, are crumbling to ruin before their eyes. Prison walls are rent asunder, and God's people, who have been held in bondage for their faith, are set free. –Idem, pp. 635-7.

 

Note: Here it is said that at midnight God will deliver His people.  It was at midnight that God interposed to deliver Israel from Egypt. (Exodus 12:29, 30)  Immediately after the pronouncement "It is done" the seventh plague follows. (See Job 34:20).

 

THE WICKED WILL SLAY EACH OTHER -- After the saints had been delivered by the voice of God, the wicked multitude turned their rage upon one another. The earth seemed to be deluged with blood, and dead bodies were from one end of it to the other. - Early Writings, p. 290.

 

The people see that they have been deluded. They accuse one another of having led them to destruction; but all unite in heaping their bitterest condemnation upon the ministers. Unfaithful pastors have prophesied smooth things; they have led their hearers to make void the law of God and to persecute those who would keep it holy. Now, in their despair, these teachers confess before the world their work of deception. The multitudes are filled with fury. "We are lost!" they cry, "and you are the cause of our ruin;" and they turn upon the false shepherds. The very ones that once admired them most will pronounce the most dreadful curses upon them. The very hands that once crowned them with laurels will be raised for their destruction. The swords which were to slay God's people are now employed to destroy their enemies. Everywhere there is strife and bloodshed. -The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan, p. 655-6.

 

THE DELIVERER COMES -- Soon there appears in the east a small black cloud, about half the size of a man's hand. It is the cloud which surrounds the Saviour and which seems in the distance to be shrouded in darkness. The people of God know this to be the sign of the Son of man. In solemn silence they gaze upon it as it draws nearer the earth, becoming lighter and more glorious, until it is a great white cloud, its base a glory like consuming fire, and above it the rainbow of the covenant. Jesus rides forth as a mighty conqueror. -Idem, p. 640-1

 

--------------------------- THE GREAT CONTROVERSY---------------------------

Chapter 35 - LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE THREATENED

 

Romanism is now regarded by Protestants with far greater favor than in former years. In those countries where Catholicism is not in the ascendancy, and the Papists are taking a conciliatory course in order to gain influence, there is an increasing indifference concerning the doctrines that separate the reformed churches from the Papal hierarchy; the opinion is gaining ground that, after all, we do not differ so widely upon vital points as has been supposed, and that a little concession on our part will bring us into a better understanding with Rome. The time was when Protestants placed a high value upon the liberty of conscience which had been so dearly purchased. They taught their children to abhor Popery and held that to seek harmony with Rome would be disloyalty to God. But how widely different are the sentiments now expressed!

 

The defenders of the Papacy declare that the Church has been maligned, and the Protestant world are inclined to accept the statement. Many urge that it is unjust to judge the [Roman] Church of today by the abominations and absurdities that marked her reign during the centuries of ignorance and darkness. They excuse her horrible cruelty as the result of the barbarism of the times and plead that the influence of modern civilization has changed her sentiments.

 

Have these persons forgotten the claim of infallibility put forth for eight hundred years by this haughty power? So far from being relinquished, this claim was affirmed in the nineteenth century with greater positiveness than ever before. As Rome asserts that the "Church never erred; nor will it, according to the Scriptures, ever err " (John L. von Mosheim, Institutes of Ecclesiastical History, Book 3, century II, part 2, chapter 2, section 9, note 17), how can she renounce the principles which governed her course in past ages?

 

The Papal Church will never relinquish her claim to infallibility. All that she has done in her persecution of those who reject her dogmas she holds to be right; and would she not repeat the same acts, should the opportunity be presented? Let the restraints now imposed by secular governments be removed and Rome be reinstated in her former power, and there would speedily be a revival of her tyranny and persecution.  [Note: Just as is quite evident in those Catholic countries and colonies where the civil power is effectively under the rulership of the Papacy and give their allegiance to it.]

 

A well-known writer speaks thus of the attitude of the Papal hierarchy as regards freedom of conscience, and of the perils which especially threaten the United States from the success of her policy:

 

"There are many who are disposed to attribute any fear of Roman Catholicism in the United States to bigotry or childishness. Such see nothing in the character and attitude of Romanism that is hostile to our free institutions, or find nothing portentous in its growth. Let us, then, first compare some of the fundamental principles of our government with those of the Catholic Church.

 

"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.'

 

"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 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.'. . . (i.e. by the civil power)

 

"Every cardinal, archbishop, and bishop in the Catholic Church takes an oath of allegiance to the Pope, in which occur the following words: 'Heretics, schismatics, and rebels to our said lord (the Pope), or his aforesaid successors, I will to my utmost persecute and oppose.'"--Josiah Strong, Our Country, Ch. 5, pars. 2-4.

 

It is true that there are real Christians in the Roman Catholic communion. Thousands in that church are serving God according to the best light they have. They are not allowed access to His word, and therefore they do not discern the truth.[* Published in 1888 and 1911. See Appendix.] They have never seen the contrast between a living heart service and a round of mere forms and ceremonies. God looks with pitying tenderness upon these souls, educated as they are in a faith that is delusive and unsatisfying. He will cause rays of light to penetrate the dense darkness that surrounds them. He will reveal to them the truth as it is in Jesus, and many will yet take their position with His people.

 

But Romanism as a system is no more in harmony with the gospel of Christ now than at any former period in her history. The Protestant churches are in great darkness, or they would discern the signs of the times. The Roman Church is far-reaching in her plans and modes of operation. She is employing every device to extend her influence and increase her power in preparation for a fierce and determined conflict to regain control of the world, to re-establish persecution, and to undo all that Protestantism has done. Catholicism is gaining ground upon every side. See the increasing number of her churches and chapels in Protestant countries. Look at the popularity of her colleges and seminaries in America, so widely patronized by Protestants. Look at the growth of ritualism in England and the frequent defections to the ranks of the Catholics. These things should awaken the anxiety of all who prize the pure principles of the Gospel.

 

Protestants have tampered with and patronized Popery; they have made compromises and concessions which Papists themselves are surprised to see and fail to understand. Men are closing their eyes to the real character of Romanism and the dangers to be apprehended from her supremacy. The people need to be aroused to resist the advances of this most dangerous foe to Civil and Religious Liberty.

 

Many Protestants suppose that the Catholic religion is unattractive and that its worship is a dull, meaningless round of ceremony. Here they mistake. While Romanism is based upon deception, it is not a coarse and clumsy imposture. The religious service of the Roman Church is a most impressive ceremonial. Its gorgeous display and solemn rites fascinate the senses of the people and silence the voice of reason and of conscience. The eye is charmed. Magnificent churches, imposing processions, golden altars, jeweled shrines, choice paintings, and exquisite sculpture appeal to the love of beauty. The ear also is captivated. The music is unsurpassed. The rich notes of the deep-toned organ, blending with the melody of many voices as it swells through the lofty domes and pillared aisles of her grand cathedrals, cannot fail to impress the mind with awe and reverence.

 

This outward splendor, pomp, and ceremony, that only mocks the longings of the sin-sick soul, is an evidence of inward corruption. The religion of Christ needs not such attractions to recommend it. In the light shining from the Cross, true Christianity appears so pure and lovely that no external decorations can enhance its true worth. It is the beauty of holiness, a meek and quiet spirit, which is of value with God.

 

Brilliancy of style is not necessarily an index of pure, elevated thought. High conceptions of art, delicate refinement of taste, often exist in minds that are earthly and sensual. They are often employed by Satan to lead men to forget the necessities of the soul, to lose sight of the future, immortal life, to turn away from their infinite Helper, and to live for this world alone.

 

A religion of externals is attractive to the unrenewed heart. The pomp and ceremony of the Catholic worship has a seductive, bewitching power, by which many are deceived; and they come to look upon the Roman Church as the very gate of heaven. [Note: Much like the ancient pagan mystery religions where the High priests supposedly controlled access to the Gods.-See Hislop, The Two Babylons] None but those who have planted their feet firmly upon the foundation of truth, and whose hearts are renewed by the Spirit of God, are proof against her influence. Thousands who have not an experimental knowledge of Christ will be led to accept the forms of godliness without the power. Such a religion is just what the multitudes desire.

 

The Church's claim to the right to pardon leads the Romanist to feel at liberty to sin; and the ordinance of confession, without which her pardon is not granted, tends also to give license to evil. He who kneels before fallen man, and opens in confession the secret thoughts and imaginations of his heart, is debasing his manhood and degrading every noble instinct of his soul. In unfolding the sins of his life to a priest,--an erring, sinful mortal, and too often corrupted with wine and licentiousness,--his standard of character is lowered, and he is defiled in consequence. His thought of God is degraded to the likeness of fallen humanity, for the priest stands as a representative of God. This degrading confession of man to man is the secret spring from which has flowed much of the evil that is defiling the world and fitting it for the final destruction. Yet to him who loves self-indulgence, it is more pleasing to confess to a fellow mortal than to open the soul to God. It is more palatable to human nature to do penance than to renounce sin; it is easier to mortify the flesh by sackcloth and nettles and galling chains than to crucify fleshly lusts. Heavy is the yoke which the carnal heart is willing to bear rather than bow to the yoke of Christ.

 

There is a striking similarity between the Church of Rome and the Jewish Church at the time of Christ's first advent. While the Jews (Note: the Pharisaic priesthood based at the Temple in Jerusalem) secretly trampled upon every principle of the law of God, they were outwardly rigorous in the observance of its precepts, loading it down with exactions and traditions that made obedience painful and burdensome. As the Jews professed to revere the Law, so do Romanists claim to reverence the Cross. They exalt the symbol of Christ's sufferings, while in their lives they deny Him whom it represents.

 

Papists place Crosses upon their churches, upon their altars, and upon their garments. Everywhere is seen the insignia of the Cross. Everywhere it is outwardly honored and exalted. But the teachings of Christ are buried beneath a mass of senseless traditions, false interpretations, and rigorous exactions. The Saviour's words concerning the bigoted Jews, [the Temple priesthood or Pharisees] apply with still greater force to the leaders of the Roman Catholic Church: "They bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers." Matthew 23:4. Conscientious souls are kept in constant terror fearing the wrath of an offended God, while many of the dignitaries of the Church are living in luxury and sensual pleasure.

 

The worship of images and relics, the invocation of saints, and the exaltation of the pope are devices of Satan to attract the minds of the people from God and from His Son. To accomplish their ruin, he endeavors to turn their attention from Him through whom alone they can find salvation. He will direct them to any object that can be substituted for the One who has said: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28).

 

It is Satan's constant effort to misrepresent the character of God, the nature of sin, and the real issues at stake in the great controversy. His sophistry lessens the obligation of the divine law and gives men license to sin. At the same time he causes them to cherish false conceptions of God so that they regard Him with fear and hate rather than with love. The cruelty inherent in his own character is attributed to the Creator; it is embodied in systems of religion and expressed in modes of worship. Thus the minds of men are blinded, and Satan secures them as his agents to war against God. By perverted conceptions of the divine attributes, heathen nations were led to believe human sacrifices necessary to secure the favor of Deity; and horrible cruelties have been perpetrated under the various forms of idolatry.

 

The Roman Catholic Church, uniting the forms of paganism and Christianity, and, like paganism, misrepresenting the character of God, had resorted to practices no less cruel and revolting. In the days of Rome's supremacy there were instruments of torture to compel assent to her doctrines. There was the stake for those who would not concede to her claims. There were massacres on a scale that will never be known until revealed in the judgment. Dignitaries of the [Roman] Church studied, under Satan their master, to invent means to cause the greatest possible torture and not end the life of the victim. In many cases the infernal process was repeated to the utmost limit of human endurance, until nature gave up the struggle, and the sufferer hailed death as a sweet release.

 

Such was the fate of Rome's opponents. For her adherents she had the discipline of the scourge, of famishing hunger, of bodily austerities in every conceivable, heart-sickening form. To secure the favor of Heaven, penitents violated the laws of God by violating the laws of nature. They were taught to sunder the ties which He has formed to bless and gladden man's earthly sojourn. The churchyard contains millions of victims who spent their lives in vain endeavors to subdue their natural affections, to repress, as offensive to God, every thought and feeling of sympathy with their fellow creatures.

If we desire to understand the determined cruelty of Satan, manifested for hundreds of years, not among those who never heard of God, but in the very heart and throughout the extent of Christendom, we have only to look at the history of Romanism. Through this mammoth system of deception the prince of evil achieves his purpose of bringing dishonor to God and wretchedness to man. And as we see how he succeeds in disguising himself and accomplishing his work through the leaders of the Church, we may better understand why he has so great antipathy to the Bible. If that Book is read, the mercy and love of God will be revealed; it will be seen that He lays upon men none of these heavy burdens. All that He asks is a broken and contrite heart, a humble, obedient spirit.

 

Christ gives no example in His life for men and women to shut themselves in monasteries in order to become fitted for heaven. He has never taught that love and sympathy must be repressed. The Saviour's heart overflowed with love. The nearer man approaches to moral perfection, the keener are his sensibilities, the more acute is his perception of sin, and the deeper his sympathy for the afflicted. The Pope claims to be the Vicar of Christ; but how does his character bear comparison with that of our Saviour? Was Christ ever known to consign men to the prison or the rack because they did not pay Him homage as the King of heaven? Was His voice heard condemning to death those who did not accept Him? When He was slighted by the people of a Samaritan village, the apostle John was filled with indignation, and inquired: "Lord, wilt Thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did?" Jesus looked with pity upon His disciple, and rebuked his harsh spirit, saying: "The Son of Man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them." (Luke 9:54, 56). How different from the spirit manifested by Christ is that of His professed Vicar.

 

The Roman Church now presents a fair front to the world, covering with apologies her record of horrible cruelties. She has clothed herself in Christ-like garments; but she is unchanged. Every principle of the Papacy that existed in past ages exists today. The doctrines devised in the darkest ages are still held. Let none deceive themselves. The Papacy that Protestants are now so ready to honor is the same that ruled the world in the days of the Reformation, when men of God stood up, at the peril of their lives, to expose her iniquity. She possesses the same pride and arrogant assumption that lorded it over kings and princes, and claimed the prerogatives of God. Her spirit is no less cruel and despotic now than when she crushed out human liberty and slew the saints of the Most High.

 

The Papacy is just what prophecy declared that she would be, the apostasy of the latter times. 2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4. It is a part of her policy to assume the character which will best accomplish her purpose; but beneath the variable appearance of the chameleon she conceals the invariable venom of the serpent. "Faith ought not to be kept with heretics, nor persons suspected of heresy" (Lenfant, Volume 1, page 516), she declares. Shall this power, whose record for a thousand years is written in the blood of the saints, be now acknowledged as a part of the church of Christ?

 

It is not without reason that the claim has been put forth in Protestant countries that Catholicism differs less widely from Protestantism than in former times. There has been a change; but the change is not in the Papacy. Catholicism indeed resembles much of the Protestantism that now exists, because Protestantism has so greatly degenerated since the days of the Reformers.

 

As the Protestants churches have been seeking the favor of the world, false charity has blinded their eyes. They do not see but that it is right to believe good of all evil, and as the inevitable result they will finally believe evil of all good.

 

Instead of standing in defense of the faith once delivered to the saints, they are now, as it were, apologizing to Rome for their uncharitable opinion of her, begging pardon for their bigotry.

A large class, even of those who look upon Romanism with no favor, apprehend little danger from her power and influence. Many urge that the intellectual and moral darkness prevailing during the Middle Ages favored the spread of her dogmas, superstitions, and oppression, and that the greater intelligence of modern times, the general diffusion of knowledge, and the increasing liberality in matters of religion forbid a revival of intolerance and tyranny. The very thought that such a state of things will exist in this enlightened age is ridiculed. It is true that great light, intellectual, moral, and religious, is shining upon this generation. In the open pages of God's Holy Word, light from heaven has been shed upon the world. But it should be remembered that the greater the light bestowed, the greater the darkness of those who pervert and reject it.

 

A prayerful study of the Bible would show Protestants the real character of the papacy and would cause them to abhor and to shun it; but many are so wise in their own conceit that they feel no need of humbly seeking God that they may be led into the truth. Although priding themselves on their enlightenment, they are ignorant both of the Scriptures and of the power of God. They must have some means of quieting their consciences, and they seek that which is least spiritual and humiliating. What they desire is a method of forgetting God which shall pass as a method of remembering Him. The Papacy is well adapted to meet the wants of all these. It is prepared for two classes of mankind, embracing nearly the whole world--those who would be saved by their merits, and those who would be saved in their sins. Here is the secret of its power.

 

A day of great intellectual darkness has been shown to be favorable to the success of the Papacy. It will yet be demonstrated that a day of great intellectual light is equally favorable for its success. In past ages, when men were without God's word and without the knowledge of the truth, their eyes were blindfolded, and thousands were ensnared, not seeing the net spread for their feet. In this generation there are many whose eyes become dazzled by the glare of human speculations, "science falsely so called;" they discern not the net, and walk into it as readily as if blindfolded. God designed that man's intellectual powers should be held as a gift from his Maker and should be employed in the service of truth and righteousness; but when pride and ambition are cherished, and men exalt their own theories above the word of God, then intelligence can accomplish greater harm than ignorance. Thus the false science of the present day, which undermines faith in the Bible, will prove as successful in preparing the way for the acceptance of the Papacy, with its pleasing forms, as did the withholding of knowledge in opening the way for its aggrandizement in the Dark Ages.

 

In the movements now in progress in the United States to secure for the institutions and usages of the church the support of the state, Protestants are following in the steps of Papists. Nay, more, they are opening the door for the Papacy to regain in Protestant America the supremacy which she has lost in the Old World. And that which gives greater significance to this movement is the fact that the principal object contemplated is the enforcement of Sunday observance--a custom which originated with Rome, and which she claims as the sign of her authority. It is the spirit of the Papacy--the spirit of conformity to worldly customs, the veneration for human traditions above the commandments of God--that is permeating the Protestant churches and leading them on to do the same work of Sunday exaltation which the Papacy has done before them.

 

[Church and State join hands: President George W Bush and the Pope shake hands during a visit to the Vatican.]

 

 

If the reader would understand the agencies to be employed in the soon-coming contest, he has but to trace the record of the means which Rome employed for the same object in ages past. If he would know how papists and Protestants united will deal with those who reject their dogmas, let him see the spirit which Rome manifested toward the Sabbath and its defenders.

 

Royal edicts, general councils, and church ordinances sustained by secular power were the steps by which the pagan festival attained its position of honor in the Christian world. The first public measure enforcing Sunday observance was the law enacted by Constantine. (A.D. 321; see Appendix.) This edict required townspeople to rest on "the venerable day of the sun," but permitted countrymen to continue their agricultural pursuits. Though virtually a heathen statute, it was enforced by the Emperor after his nominal acceptance of Christianity.

 

The royal mandate not proving a sufficient substitute for divine authority, Eusebius, a bishop who sought the favor of princes, and who was the special friend and flatterer of Constantine, advanced the claim that Christ had transferred the Sabbath to Sunday. Not a single testimony of the Scriptures was produced in proof of the new doctrine. Eusebius himself unwittingly acknowledges its falsity and points to the real authors of the change. "All things," he says, "whatever that it was duty to do on the Sabbath, these we have transferred to the Lord's Day."--Robert Cox, Sabbath Laws and Sabbath Duties, page 538.  But the Sunday argument, groundless as it was, served to embolden men in trampling upon the Sabbath of the Lord. All who desired to be honored by the world accepted the popular festival.

 

As the Papacy became firmly established, the work of Sunday exaltation was continued. For a time the people engaged in agricultural labor when not attending church, and the seventh day was still regarded as the Sabbath. But steadily a change was effected. Those in holy office were forbidden to pass judgment in any civil controversy on the Sunday. Soon after, all persons, of whatever rank, were commanded to refrain from common labor on pain of a fine for freemen and stripes in the case of servants. Later it was decreed that rich men should be punished with the loss of half of their estates; and finally, that if still obstinate they should be made slaves. The lower classes were to suffer perpetual banishment.

 

Miracles also were called into requisition. Among other wonders it was reported that as a husbandman who was about to plow his field on Sunday cleaned his plow with an iron, the iron stuck fast in his hand, and for two years he carried it about with him, "to his exceeding great pain and shame."--Francis West, Historical and Practical Discourse on the Lord's Day, page 174.

 

Later the pope gave directions that the parish priest should admonish the violators of Sunday and wish them to go to church and say their prayers, lest they bring some great calamity on themselves and neighbors. An ecclesiastical council brought forward the argument, since so widely employed, even by Protestants, that because persons had been struck by lightning while laboring on Sunday, it must be the Sabbath. "It is apparent," said the prelates, "how high the displeasure of God was upon their neglect of this day." An appeal was then made that priests and ministers, kings and princes, and all faithful people "use their utmost endeavors and care that the day be restored to its honor, and, for the credit of Christianity, more devoutly observed for the time to come."--Thomas Morer, Discourse in Six Dialogues on the Name, Notion, and Observation of the Lord's Day, page 271.

 

The decrees of councils proving insufficient, the secular authorities were besought to issue an edict that would strike terror to the hearts of the people and force them to refrain from labor on the Sunday. At a synod held in Rome, all previous decisions were reaffirmed with greater force and solemnity. They were also incorporated into the ecclesiastical law and enforced by the civil authorities throughout nearly all Christendom. (See Heylyn, History of the Sabbath, pt. 2, ch. 5, sec. 7.)

 

Still the absence of Scriptural authority for Sunday-keeping occasioned no little embarrassment. The people questioned the right of their teachers to set aside the positive declaration of Jehovah, "The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God," in order to honor the day of the sun. To supply the lack of Bible testimony, other expedients were necessary. A zealous advocate of Sunday, who about the close of the twelfth century visited the churches of England, was resisted by faithful witnesses for the truth; and so fruitless were his efforts that he departed from the country for a season and cast about him for some means to enforce his teachings. When he returned, the lack was supplied, and in his after labors he met with greater success. He brought with him a roll purporting to be from God Himself, which contained the needed command for Sunday observance, with awful threats to terrify the disobedient. This precious document-- as base a counterfeit as the institution it supported--was said to have fallen from heaven and to have been found in Jerusalem, upon the altar of St. Simeon, in Golgotha. But, in fact, the Pontifical palace at Rome was the source whence it proceeded. Frauds and forgeries to advance the power and prosperity of the Church have in all ages been esteemed lawful by the Papal hierarchy.

 

The roll forbade labor from the ninth hour, three o'clock, on Saturday afternoon, till sunrise on Monday; and its authority was declared to be confirmed by many miracles. It was reported that persons laboring beyond the appointed hour were stricken with paralysis. A miller who attempted to grind his corn, saw, instead of flour, a torrent of blood come forth, and the mill wheel stood still, notwithstanding the strong rush of water. A woman who placed dough in the oven found it raw when taken out, though the oven was very hot. Another who had dough prepared for baking at the ninth hour, but determined to set it aside till Monday, found, the next day, that it had been made into loaves and baked by divine power. A man who baked bread after the ninth hour on Saturday found, when he broke it the next morning, that blood started therefrom. By such absurd and superstitious fabrications did the advocates of Sunday endeavor to establish its sacredness. (See Roger de Hoveden, Annals, vol. 2, pp. 528-530.)

 

In Scotland, as in England, a greater regard for Sunday was secured by uniting with it a portion of the ancient Sabbath. But the time required to be kept holy varied. An edict from the king of Scotland declared that "Saturday from twelve at noon ought to be accounted holy," and that no man, from that time till Monday morning, should engage in worldly business.--Morer, pages 290, 291.

 

But notwithstanding all the efforts to establish Sunday sacredness, Papists themselves publicly confessed the divine authority of the Sabbath and the human origin of the institution by which it had been supplanted. In the sixteenth century a Papal Council plainly declared: "Let all Christians remember that the seventh day was consecrated by God, and hath been received and observed, not only by the Jews, but by all others who pretend to worship God; though we Christians have changed their Sabbath into the Lord's Day."-- Ibid., pages 281, 282. Those who were tampering with the divine law were not ignorant of the character of their work. They were deliberately setting themselves above God.

 

A striking illustration of Rome's policy toward those who disagree with her was given in the long and bloody persecution of the Waldenses, some of whom were observers of the Sabbath. Others suffered in a similar manner for their fidelity to the fourth commandment. The history of the churches of Ethiopia and Abyssinia is especially significant. Amid the gloom of the Dark Ages, the Christians of Central Africa were lost sight of and forgotten by the world, and for many centuries they enjoyed freedom in the exercise of their faith. But at last Rome learned of their existence, and the emperor of Abyssinia was soon beguiled into an acknowledgment of the Pope as the Vicar of Christ. Other concessions followed.

 

An edict was issued forbidding the observance of the Sabbath under the severest penalties. (See Michael Geddes, Church History of Ethiopia, pages 311, 312.) But Papal tyranny soon became a yoke so galling that the Abyssinians determined to break it from their necks. After a terrible struggle the Romanists were banished from their dominions, and the ancient faith was restored. The churches rejoiced in their freedom, and they never forgot the lesson they had learned concerning the deception, the fanaticism, and the despotic power of Rome. Within their solitary realm they were content to remain, unknown to the rest of Christendom.

 

The churches of Africa held the Sabbath as it was held by the Papal Church before her complete apostasy. While they kept the seventh day in obedience to the commandment of God, they abstained from labor on the Sunday in conformity to the custom of the church. Upon obtaining supreme power, Rome had trampled upon the Sabbath of God to exalt her own; but the churches of Africa, hidden for nearly a thousand years, did not share in this apostasy. When brought under the sway of Rome, they were forced to set aside the true and exalt the false sabbath; but no sooner had they regained their independence than they returned to obedience to the fourth commandment. (See Appendix .)

 

These records of the past clearly reveal the enmity of Rome toward the true Sabbath and its defenders, and the means which she employs to honor the institution of her creating. The word of God teaches that these scenes are to be repeated as Roman Catholics and Protestants shall unite for the exaltation of the Sunday. [Note: the self-proclaimed ‘mark’ of Papal authority and supremacy]

 

The prophecy of Revelation 13 declares that the power represented by the beast with lamb-like horns shall cause "the earth and them which dwell therein" to worship the Papacy --there symbolized by the beast "like unto a leopard." The beast with two horns is also to say "to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast;" and, furthermore, it is to command all, "both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond," to receive the mark of the beast. (Revelation 13:11-16).  It has been shown that the United States is the power represented by the beast with lamblike horns, and that this prophecy will be fulfilled when the United States shall enforce Sunday observance, which Rome claims as the special acknowledgment of her supremacy. But in this homage to the Papacy the United States will not be alone. The influence of Rome in the countries that once acknowledged her dominion is still far from being destroyed. And prophecy foretells a restoration of her power. "I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast." Verse 3.  The infliction of the deadly wound points to the downfall of the Papacy in 1798. After this, says the prophet, "his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast." Paul states plainly that the "man of sin" will continue until the Second Advent. (2 Thessalonians 2:3-8).  To the very close of time he will carry forward the work of deception. And the revelator declares, also referring to the Papacy: "All that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life." (Revelation 13:8).  In both the Old and the New World, the Papacy will receive homage in the honor paid to the Sunday institution, that rests solely upon the authority of the Roman Church.

 

[ US President Barack Obama and Pope Benedict XVI ]

 

Since the middle of the nineteenth century, students of prophecy in the United States have presented this testimony to the world. In the events now taking place is seen a rapid advance toward the fulfillment of the prediction. With Protestant teachers there is the same claim of divine authority for Sunday-keeping, and the same lack of Scriptural evidence, as with the Papal leaders who fabricated miracles to supply the place of a command from God. The assertion that God's judgments are visited upon men for their violation of the Sunday-sabbath, will be repeated; already it is beginning to be urged. And a movement to enforce Sunday observance is fast gaining ground.

 

Marvelous in her shrewdness and cunning is the Roman Church. She can read what is to be. She bides her time, seeing that the Protestant churches are paying her homage in their acceptance of the false sabbath and that they are preparing to enforce it by the very means which she herself employed in bygone days. Those who reject the light of truth will yet seek the aid of this self-styled infallible power to exalt an institution that originated with her. How readily she will come to the help of Protestants in this work it is not difficult to conjecture. Who understands better than the Papal leaders how to deal with those who are disobedient to the Church?

 

The Roman Catholic Church, with all its ramifications throughout the world, forms one vast organization under the control, and designed to serve the interests, of the papal see. Its millions of communicants, in every country on the globe, are instructed to hold themselves as bound in allegiance to the Pope. Whatever their nationality or their government, they are to regard the authority of the Church as above all other. Though they may take the oath pledging their loyalty to the state, yet back of this lies the vow of obedience to Rome, absolving them from every pledge inimical to her interests.

 

History testifies of her artful and persistent efforts to insinuate herself into the affairs of nations; and having gained a foothold, to further her own aims, even at the ruin of princes and people. In the year 1204, Pope Innocent III extracted from Peter II, King of Arragon, the following extraordinary oath: "I, Peter, King of Arragonians, profess and promise to be ever faithful and obedient to my Lord, Pope Innocent, to his Catholic successors, and the Roman Church, and faithfully to preserve my kingdom in his obedience, defending the Catholic faith, and persecuting heretical pravity." --John Dowling, The History of Romanism, b. 5, ch. 6, sec. 55. This is in harmony with the claims regarding the power of the Roman Pontiff "that it is lawful for him to depose emperors" and "that he can absolve subjects from their allegiance to unrighteous rulers."--Mosheim, b. 3, cent. 11, pt. 2, ch. 2, sec. 9, note 17. (See also Appendix .)

 

And let it be remembered, it is the boast of Rome that she never changes. The principles of [Popes] Gregory VII and Innocent III are still the principles of the Roman Catholic Church. And had she but the power, she would put them in practice with as much vigor now as in past centuries. Protestants little know what they are doing when they propose to accept the aid of Rome in the work of Sunday exaltation. While they are bent upon the accomplishment of their purpose, Rome is aiming to re-establish her power, to recover her lost supremacy. Let the principle once be established in the United States that the Church may employ or control the power of the state; that religious observances may be enforced by secular laws; in short, that the authority of Church and State is to dominate the conscience, and the triumph of Rome in this country is assured.

 

God's word has given warning of the impending danger; let this be unheeded, and the Protestant world will learn what the purposes of Rome really are, only when it is too late to escape the snare. She is silently growing into power. Her doctrines are exerting their influence in legislative halls, in the churches, and in the hearts of men. She is piling up her lofty and massive structures in the secret recesses of which her former persecutions will be repeated. Stealthily and unsuspectedly she is strengthening her forces to further her own ends when the time shall come for her to strike. All that she desires is vantage ground, and this is already being given her. We shall soon see and shall feel what the purpose of the Roman element is. Whoever shall believe and obey the word of God will thereby incur reproach and persecution.

 

 

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Uriah Smith - REVELATION

Chapter 17 - A WORLD UNION OF CHURCH AND STATE

 

Verse 1 And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will show unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: 2 With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. 3 So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: 5 and upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

 

In verse 19 of the preceding chapter, we are informed that “great Babylon came in remembrance before God to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath.” The prophet now takes up more particularly the subject of this great Babylon. In order to give a full presentation of it, he goes back to recount some of the facts of her history. That this apostate woman as presented in this chapter is a symbol of the Roman Catholic Church, is generally believed by Protestants. Between this church and the kings of the earth there has been illicit connection. With the wine of her fornication, her false doctrines, the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk.

 

CHURCH AND STATE.—This prophecy is more definite than others applicable to the Roman power in that it distinguishes between Church and State. We have here the woman, the Church, seated upon a scarlet-colored beast, the civil power, by which she is upheld, and which she controls and guides to her own ends, as a rider controls the animal upon which he is seated.

 

The vesture and decorations of this woman, as brought to view in verse 4, are in striking harmony with the application made of this symbol. Purple and scarlet are the chief colors in the robes of Popes and Cardinals. Among the myriads of precious stones which adorn her service, according to eyewitnesses, silver is scarcely known, and gold itself is less noticeable than are costly gems. From the golden cup in her hand—symbol of purity of doctrine and profession, which should have contained only that which is unadulterated and pure, or only that which is in full accordance with truth—there came forth only abominations, and the wine of her fornication, fit symbol of her abominable doctrines and still more abominable practices.

 

The symbol of a woman with a cup in her hand is said to have been used at a Papal jubilee.

      “In 1825, on the occasion of the jubilee, Pope Leo XII struck a medal, bearing on the one side his own image, and on the other, that of the Church of Rome symbolized as a ‘Woman,’ holding in her left hand a Cross and in her right a cup, with the legend around her, ‘Sede Super Universum’,- ‘The whole world is her seat.’” [1]

 

This woman is explicitly called Babylon. Is Rome, then, Babylon, to the exclusion of all other religious bodies?—No, she cannot be, from the fact that she is called the Mother of harlots as already noticed, which shows that there are other independent religious organizations that constitute the apostate daughters, and belong to the same great family.

 

      Verse 6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration. 7 And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.

 

A Cause of Wonder.—Why should John “wonder with great wonder,” as it reads in the original, when he saw the woman drunken with the blood of saints? Was the persecution of the people of God any strange in his day? Had he not seen Rome launch its most fiery anathemas against the church, himself being in banishment under its cruel power at the time he wrote? Why, then, should he be astonished, as he looked forward, and saw Rome still persecuting the saints? The secret of his wonder was this: All the persecution he had witnessed had been from pagan Rome, the open enemy of Christ. It was not strange that pagans should persecute Christ’s followers. But when he looked forward and saw a Church professedly Christian persecuting the followers of the Lamb, and drunk with their blood, he could but wonder with great amazement.

 

      Verse 8 The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is. 9 And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. 10 And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space. 11 And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.

 

Rome in Three Phases.—The beast of which the angel here speaks is evidently the scarlet-colored beast. A wild beast, like the one thus introduced, is the symbol of an oppressive and persecuting power. While the Roman power as a nation had a long, interrupted existence, it passed through certain phases during which this symbol would not be applicable to it, and during which time the beast, in such prophecies as the present, might be said not to be, or not to exist. Thus Rome in its pagan form was a persecuting power in its relation to the people of God, during which time it constituted the beast that was. But when the [Roman] Empire was nominally converted to Christianity, there was a transition from paganism to another phase of religion falsely called Christian. During a brief period, while this transition was going on, it lost its ferocious and persecuting character, and then it could be said of the beast that it was not. As time passed, it developed into the Papacy, and again assumed its bloodthirsty and oppressive character.

 

The Seven Heads.—The seven heads are explained to be first, seven mountains, and then seven kings. The expression in verse 10, “and there are seven kings,” reads in the original, “and are seven kings.” This makes the sentence read: “The seven heads are seven mountains . . . and are seven kings,” thus identifying heads, mountains, and kings.

 

The angel says further, “five [kings] are fallen,” or passed away. Again he says, “one [king] is”—the sixth was then reigning. “The other is not yet come; and when he cometh he must continue a short space.” [Note: Holy Roman Empire AD 800-1806 which endured for over 1000 years?]  Last of all, “the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven….”

 

From this account of the seven kings, we understand that when the one that had “not yet come” at the time of which John was writing, [Note: in the 1st Century AD], appears on the scene, he is here called an eighth, though he is really “of the seven,” in the sense that he absorbed and exercised their power. It is this one whose career we are interested to follow. Of this one it is said that his destiny was to go “into perdition,” that is, to perish utterly. This repeats the affirmation made in verse 8 concerning “the beast that thou sawest,” which in turn is the “scarlet colored beast,” on which the woman sat. We have shown that this beast symbolizes civil power, which according to the narrative before us, passes through seven phases represented also in the leopard beast of Revelation 13, until an eighth appears and continues to the end. Since we have already shown that Papal Rome grew out of and succeeded pagan Rome, [Note: after the fall of imperial Rome under the Caesars in the western Roman Empire in 476 AD], we must conclude that the eighth head, which was of the seven and ultimately exercised their power, represents the Papacy, with all its mixture of so-called Christian doctrines with pagan superstitions and observances.

 

Verse 12 And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. 13 These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. 14 These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for He is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with Him are called, and chosen, and faithful.

 

The Ten Horns.—On this subject see remarks on Daniel 7:7, where the ten horns are shown to represent the ten kingdoms that rose out of the Roman Empire. They receive power one hour ({Greek- w%ra} ‘hora’, an indefinite space of time) with the beast. That is, they reign a length of time contemporaneously with the beast, during which time they give to it their power and strength.

 

  [Pope Benedict XVI and Former US Secretary of State (under Nixon), Henry Kissinger (Council on Foreign Relations).]

 

Croly offers this comment on verse 12: “The prediction defines the epoch of the Papacy by the formation of the ten kingdoms of the Western (Roman) Empire. “They shall receive power one hour with the beast.’ The translation should be, ‘in the same era ({Greek- mivan horan} [mian horan]). The ten kingdoms shall be contemporaneous in contradistinction to the ‘seven heads,’ which were successive.” [2]  (Note: the seven successive world powers or empires in world history)

 

This language doubtless refers to the past, when the kingdoms of Europe were unanimous in giving their support to the Papacy. The treatment which these kingdoms are finally to give the Papacy is expressed in verse 16, where it is said that they shall hate the harlot, make her desolate and naked, eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. A part of this work the nations of Europe have been doing for years. The completion of it, burning her with fire, will be accomplished when Revelation 18:8 is fulfilled.

 

“These shall make war with the Lamb.” Verse 14. Here we are carried into the future, to the time of the great and final battle, for at this time the Lamb bears the title King of kings and Lords of lords, a title which He assumes when He ceases His intercessory priesthood at the close of probation. (Revelation 19:11-16.)

 

      Verse 15 And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues. 16 And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. 17  For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil His will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled. 18  And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.

 

Destiny of the Harlot.—In verse 15 we have a plain definition of the Scripture symbol of waters; they denote peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues. The angel told John, while calling his attention to this subject, that he would show him the judgment of this great harlot. In verse 16 that judgment is specified. This chapter has naturally more especial referenda to the Mother, or Catholic Babylon. The next chapter, if we mistake not, deals with the character and destiny of another great branch of Babylon, the harlot daughters.

 

[ Pope Benedict XVI and President George W. Bush at the White House.]

 

 _____________________

Holy See's Statement on Draft of European Constitution

EU Text Fails to Recognize Christian Roots

 

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 20, 2004  (Zenit.org) - Here is the statement of Joaquín Navarro Valls, director of the Vatican press  office, published Saturday following the decision by European leaders in Brussels to back the draft of the Constitutional Treaty of the European Union

 

The news media have reported the adoption by consensus in Brussels of the European Constitutional Treaty by the heads of state and government of the 25 member states.

 

The Holy See expresses satisfaction over this new and important stage in the process of European

integration, which has always been supported and encouraged by the Roman Pontiff. Also a reason for satisfaction is the introduction in the treaty of the measure which safeguards the status of religious confessions in the member states, and commits the Union to maintain an open, transparent and regular dialogue with them, recognizing their identity and specific contribution.

 

The Holy See cannot but express its distress over the opposition of some governments to the explicit recognition of the [Catholic?] Christian roots of Europe. It is a question of disregard of the historical evidence and of the [Catholic] Christian identity of European peoples.

 

The Holy See expresses heartfelt appreciation and gratitude to those governments that, aware of the

past and of the historical horizon in which the new Europe is taking shape, worked to express concretely its recognized religious heritage.

 

Not to be forgotten is the intense commitment of different entities to have the [Catholic] Christian heritage of Europe mentioned in this Treaty, stimulating the reflection of political leaders, citizens and public opinion on a question that is not secondary in the present national, European and world context.



 ___________________

 The Cambridge Medieval History - J. B. Bury:

 VOLUME I. The Christian Roman Empire and the Foundation of the Teutonic Kingdoms

 VOLUME V. CONTEST OF EMPIRE AND PAPACY

 VOLUME. VI. Victory of the Papacy.

 VOLUME VII. Decline of Empire and Papacy.


 Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Edward Gibbon


 PAPAL SUPREMACY AND AMERICAN DEMOCRACY - V. N. Olsen


  _____________________

  Downloadable PDF files:

 

 Observations on Daniel - Sir Isaac Newton

newton.pdf




  The Great Controversy - Ellen G. White

TheGreatControversy.pdf



 

DANIEL2.doc



Apocalypse_13.pdf



Les_prophètes.doc




 Daniel and the Revelation - Uriah Smith

UriahS.pdf




 The Papacy - J. A. Wylie:

THE_PAPACY.pdf






 ___________________


 1797 Treaty of Tolentino between Napoleonic France and the Holy See (French):

1797tolentino.pdf

 The EU Constitutional Treaty (2005):

09_01_05_constitution.pdf

 

Collection of Papal addresses to the United Nations General Assembly:

UN 1965 PAOLO VI.doc

For a Roman Catholic perspective on the Vatican presence at the United Nations:

2001seechangebriefingpaper.pdf

EU Lisbon Treaty (as of 2007):

Consolidated_LISBON_TREATY_3.pdf

The Berlin Declaration on the 50th Anniversary of the 1957 Treaty of Rome:

BerlinDecl.pdf