“It is, of the very essence of historical falsehood,” writes Mr. MacQueen, “to declare that the Romanist Oxford Tractarian Movement was the heir of the Evangelical Revival, whereas it was the logical development from the false teaching of the Arminian Methodist John Wesley.” “Dr. J.H. Rigg says concerning John Wesley: ‘The resemblance of his practices to those of modern High Anglicans is, in most points, exceedingly striking… He inculcated fasting and confession and weekly communion; he refused the Lord’s Supper to all who had not been baptized by a minister episcopally ordained; he re-baptized the children of Dissenters; and he refused to bury all who had not received Episcopal baptism’ (‘Churchmanship of John Wesley’ pp. 28-29). The present writer is amazed at Evangelical Calvinists who say that while John Wesley was undoubtedly Arminian in his views, his brother Charles was Calvinistic. After a careful perusal of their lives and the views of both of them, I am thoroughly persuaded that they were both Arminian to the core, Charles’ hymns notwithstanding. Their false undermining Arminian teaching and influence weakened the Protestant witness against Popery in England and throughout the British Dominions, while Scotland itself was by no means exempt, and this evil free-willism, as a result, continues rife and rampant in professedly evangelical circles in England and Scotland, and the whole English-speaking world, to this day. While thus, the eighteenth Century Revival saved England from the ‘withering blight of Atheism, masquerading under the euphemistic name of Deism,’ it is a great mistake to confound Evangelicalism with Wesleyanism, or to imagine that Wesley and Whitefield both belonged to one Movement and preached the same Gospel. On the contrary, their teaching was diametrically opposed, free grace being Scriptural, while free-will is the illegitimate product of the carnal mind. Whitefield was… Calvinistic… while Wesley, and his associates, were Arminian, semi-Pelagian and Sacramentalist.
William MacLean-Arminianism-Another Gospel
A few weeks ago I set out on a series of articles through which I am scanning the history of the church—from its earliest days all the way to the present time—to examine some of Christianity’s most notable false teachers. Along the way we have visited such figures as Arius, Joseph Smith, Ellen G. White and Norman Vincent Peale. Today we will look at a man who commands more followers than perhaps any other person in the world: Jorge Mario Bergoglio, known also as Pope Francis.
Says Martin Luther:
What is the whole papacy but a beautiful false front and a deceptively glittering holiness under which the wretched devil lies in hiding? The devil always desires to imitate God in this way. He cannot bear to observe God speaking. If he cannot prevent it or hinder God’s Word by force, he opposes it with a semblance of piety, takes the very words God had spoken and so twist them as to peddle his lies and poison under their name. (What Luther Says, II: 10007)
Since the papal church not only neglects the command of Christ but even compels the people to ignore it and to act against it, it is certain that it is not Christ’s church but the synagogue of Satan which prescribes sin and prohibits righteousness. It clearly and indisputably follows that it must be the abomination of Antichrist and the furious harlot of the devil. (What Luther Says, II: 1019)
The negotiation about doctrinal agreement displeases me altogether, for this is utterly impossible unless the pope has his papacy abolished. Therefore avoid and flee those who seek the middle of the road. Think of me after I am dead and such middle-of-the-road men arise, for nothing good will come of it. There can be no compromise. (What Luther Says, II: 1019)
Let him who does not want to be lost and go to the devil be on his guard with all diligence and earnestness against the papacy and its doctrine, and let him never again accept even the most insignificant and smallest part of the papacy’s teaching, no matter what it may cost him. Let him flee from the papacy and its following as from the devil incarnate himself, and let him by no means be silenced by the sweet, slippery words of hypocrites or be persuaded that yielding and conceding something for the sake of peace is a matter of little consequence and that the bond of love should not be disrupted for the sake of something trifling (as they represent and rationalize this to be). Come now, there is assuredly no joking in this matter; eternal salvation and eternal damnation are involved. (What Luther Says, II:1019-1020)
Can anything more horrible be said than that the kingdom of the papists is the kingdom of those who spit at Christ, the Son of God, and crucify Him anew? For they do crucify Christ in themselves, in the church and in the hearts of the faithful. Therefore let everyone who is honestly given to piety flee out of this Babylon as quickly as possible. For so great are its impurity and its abomination that no one can express them in words; they can be discerned only by eyes that are spiritual. (What Luther Says, II: 1020)
My dear pope, I will kiss your feet and acknowledge you as supreme bishop if you will worship my Christ and grant that through His death and resurrection, not through keeping your traditions, we have forgiveness of sins and life eternal. If you will yield on this point, I shall not take away your crown and power; if not, I shall constantly cry out that you are the Antichrist, and I shall testify that your whole cult and religion are only a denial of God, but also the height of blasphemy against God and idolatry. (What Luther Says, II: 1069)
Ah, my dear brother in Christ, bear with me if here or elsewhere I use such coarse language when speaking of the wretched, confronted, atrocious monster at Rome! He who knows my thoughts must say that I am much, much, much too lenient and have neither words nor thought adequately to describe the shameful, abominable blasphemy to which he subjects the Word and name of Christ, our dear Lord and Savior. There are some Christians, wicked Christians indeed, who now would gloss things over to make the pope appear against in a good light and who, after he does so and has been dragged out of the mud, would like to reinstate him on the altar. But they are wicked people, whoever they may be, who defend the pope and want me to be quiet about the means whereby he has done harm. Truly, I cannot do this. All true, pious Christians, who love Christ and His Word, should, as said, be sincerely hostile to the pope. They should persecute him and injure him. All should do this in their several calling, to the best of their ability, with all faithfulness and diligence. (What Luther Says, II: 1072)
What kind of a church is the pope’s church? It is an uncertain, vacillating and tottering church. Indeed, it is a deceitful, lying church, doubting and unbelieving, without God’s Word. For the pope with his wrong keys teaches his church to doubt and to be uncertain. If it is a vacillating church, then it is not the church of faith, for the latter is founded upon a rock, and the gates of hell cannot prevail against it (Matt.16:18). If it is not the church of faith, then it is not the Christian church, but it must be an unchristian, anti-Christian, and faithless church which destroys and ruins the real, holy, Christian church. (Luther’s Works, vol. 40, Church and Ministry II, The Keys, p.348)
All this is to be noted carefully, so that we can treat with contempt the filthy, foolish twaddle that the popes present in their decrees about their Roman church, that is, about their devil’s synagogue (Rev.2:9), which separates itself from common Christendom and the spiritual edifice built up on this stone, and instead invents for itself a fleshly worldly, worthless, lying, blasphemous, idolatrous authority over all of Christendom. One of these two things must be true: if the Roman church is not built on this rock along with the other churches, then it is the devil’s church; but if it is built, along with all the other churches, on this roc, then it cannot be lord or head over the other churches. For Christ the cornerstone knows nothing of two unequal churches, but only of one church alone, just as the Children’s Faith, that is, the faith of all of Christendom, says, “I believe in one holy, Christian church,” and does not say, “I believe in one holy Roman church.” The Roman church is and should be one portion or member of the holy Christian church, not the head, which befits solely Christ the cornerstone. If not, it is not a Christian but an UN-Christian and anti-Christian church, that is, a papal school of scoundrels. (Luther’s Works, Volume 41, Church and Ministry III, Against The Roman Papacy, An Institution Of The Devil, p.311)
These arrogant and unlearned papists can’t govern the church because they write nothing, they read nothing, but, firmly saddled in the pride of possession, they cry out that the decrees of the fathers are not to be questioned and decisions made are not to be disputed, otherwise one would have to dance to the tune of every little brother. For this reason the pope, possessed by demons, defends his tyranny with the canon “Si papa.” This canon states clearly: if the pope should lead the whole world into the control of hell, he is nevertheless not to be contradicted. It’s a terrible thing that on account of the authority of this man we must lose our souls, which Christ redeemed with his precious blood. Christ says, “I will not cast out anybody who comes to me” (John 6:37). On the other hand, the pope says, “As I will it, so I command it; you must perish rather than resist me.” Therefore the pope, whom our princes adore, is full of devils. He must be exterminated by the Word and by prayer. (Luther’s Works, vol.54, Table Talk, No.441, p.330)
I believe the pope is the masked and incarnate devil because he is the Antichrist. As Christ is God incarnate, so the Antichrist is the devil incarnate. The words are really spoken of the pope when it’s said that he’s a mixed god, an earthly god, that is , a god of the earth. Here god is understood as god of this world. Why does he call himself an earthly god, as if the one, almighty God weren’t also on the earth? The kingdom of the pope really signifies the terrible wrath of God, namely, the abomination of desolation standing in the holy place. (Luther’s Works, vol.54, Table Talks, No.4487, p.346)
J.A. Wylie, History of Protestantism, Book 1, Chapter 3:
DEVELOPMENT OF THE PAPACY FROM THE TIMES OF CONSTANTINE TO THOSE OF HILDEBRAND.
Imperial Edicts — Prestige of Rome — Fall of the Western Empire — The Papacy seeks and finds a New Basis of Power — Christ’s Vicar — Conversion of Gothic Nations — Pepin and Charlemagne — The Lombards and the Saracens — Forgeries and False Decretals — Election of the Roman Pontiff.
BEFORE opening our great theme it may be needful to sketch the rise and development of the Papacy as a politico-ecclesiastical power. The history on which we are entering, and which we must rapidly traverse, is one of the most wonderful in the world. It is scarcely possible to imagine humbler beginnings than those from which the Papacy arose, and certainly it is not possible to imagine a loftier height than that to which it eventually climbed. He who was seen in the first century presiding as the humble pastor over a single congregation, and claiming no rank above his brethren, is beheld in the twelfth century occupying a seat from which he looks down on all the thrones temporal and spiritual of Christendom. How, we ask with amazement, was the Papacy able to traverse the mighty space that divided the humble pastor from the mitered king?
We traced in the foregoing chapter the decay of doctrine and manners within the Church. Among the causes which contributed to the exaltation of the Papacy this declension may be ranked as fundamental, seeing it opened the door for other deteriorating influences, and mightily favored their operation. Instead of “reaching forth to what was before,” the Christian Church permitted herself to be overtaken by the spirit of the ages that lay behind her. There came an after-growth of Jewish ritualism, of Greek philosophy, and of Pagan ceremonialism and idolatry; and, as the consequence of this threefold action, the clergy began to be gradually changed, as already mentioned, from a “teaching ministry” to a “sacrificing priesthood.” This made them no longer ministers or servants of their fellow-Christians; they took the position of a caste, claiming to be superior to the laity, invested with mysterious powers, the channels of grace, and the mediators with God. Thus there arose a hierarchy, assuming to mediate between God and men.
The hierarchical polity was the natural concomitant of the hierarchical doctrine. That polity was so consolidated by the time that the empire became Christian, and Constantine ascended the throne (311), that the Church now stood out as a body distinct from the State; and her new organization, subsequently received, in imitation of that of the empire, as stated in the previous chapter, helped still further to define and strengthen her hierarchical government. Still, the primacy of Rome was then a thing unheard of. Manifestly the 300 Fathers who assembled (A.D. 325) at Nicaea knew nothing of it, for in their sixth and seventh canons they expressly recognize the authority of the Churches of Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and others, each within its own boundaries, even as Rome had jurisdiction within its limits; and enact that the jurisdiction and privileges of these Churches shall be retained. Under Leo the Great (440 — 461) a forward step was taken. The Church of Rome assumed the form and exercised the sway of an ecclesiastical principality, while her head, in virtue of an imperial manifesto (445) of Valentinian III., which recognized the Bishop of Rome as supreme over the Western Church, affected, the authority and pomp of a spiritual sovereign.
Still further, the ascent of the Bishop of Rome to the supremacy was silently yet Powerfully aided by that mysterious and subtle influence which appeared to be indigenous to the soil on which his chair was placed. In an age when the rank of the city determined the rank of its pastor, it was natural that the Bishop of Rome should hold something of that pre-eminence among the clergy which Rome held among cities. Gradually the reverence and awe with which men had regarded the old mistress of the world, began to gather round the person and the chair of her bishop. It was an age of factions and strifes, and the eyes of the contending parties naturally turned to the pastor of the Tiber. They craved his advice, or they submitted their differences to his judgment. These applications the Roman Bishop was careful to register as acknowledgments of his superiority, and on fitting occasions he was not forgetful to make them the basis of new and higher claims. The Latin race, moreover, retained the practical habits for which it had so long been renowned; and while the Easterns, giving way to their speculative genius, were expending their energies in controversy, the Western Church was steadily pursuing her onward path, and skillfully availing herself of everything that could tend to enhance her influence and extend her jurisdiction.
The removal of the seat of empire from Rome to the splendid city on the Bosphorus, Constantinople, which the emperor had built with becoming magnificence for his residence, also tended to enhance the power of the Papal chair. It removed from the side of the Pope a functionary by whom he was eclipsed, and left him the first person in the old capital of the world. The emperor had departed, but the prestige of the old city — the fruit of countless victories, and of ages of dominion — had not departed. The contest which had been going on for some time among the five great patriarchates — Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem, Constantinople, and Rome — the question at issue being the same as that which provoked the contention among the disciples of old, “which was the greatest,” was now restricted to the last two. The city on the Bosphorus was the seat of government, and the abode of the emperor; this gave her patriarch Powerful claims. But the city on the banks of the Tiber wielded a mysterious and potent charm over the imagination, as the heir of her who had been the possessor of all the power, of all the glory, and of all the dominion of the past; and this vast prestige enabled her patriarch to carry the day. As Rome was the one city in the earth, so her bishop was the one bishop in the Church. A century and a half later (606), this pre-eminence was decreed to the Roman Bishop in an imperial edict of Phocas. Thus, before the Empire of the West fell, the Bishop of Rome had established substantially his spiritual supremacy. An influence of a manifold kind, of which not the least part was the prestige of the city and the empire, had lifted him to this fatal pre-eminence. But now the time has come when the empire must fall, and we expect to see that supremacy which it had so largely helped to build up fall with it. But no! The wave of barbarism which rolled in from the North, overwhelming society and sweeping away the empire, broke harmlessly at the feet of the Bishop of Rome. The shocks that overturned dynasties and blotted out nationalities, left his power untouched, his seat unshaken. Nay, it was at that very hour, when society was perishing around him, that the Bishop of Rome laid anew the foundations of his power, and placed them where they might remain immovable for all time. He now cast himself on a far stronger element than any the revolution had swept away. He now claimed to be the successor of Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, and the Vicar of Christ. The canons of Councils, as recorded in Hardouin, show a stream of decisions from Pope Celestine, in the middle of the fifth century, to Pope Boniface II. in the middle of the sixth, claiming, directly or indirectly, this august prerogative. When the Bishop of Rome placed his chair, with all the prerogatives and dignities vested in it, upon this ground, he stood no longer upon a merely imperial foundation. Henceforward he held neither of Caesar nor of Rome; he held immediately of Heaven. What one emperor had given, another emperor might take away. It did not suit the Pope to hold his office by so uncertain a tenure. He made haste, therefore, to place his supremacy where no future decree of emperor, no lapse of years, and no coming revolution could overturn it. He claimed to rest it upon a Divine foundation; he claimed to be not merely the chief of bishops and the first of patriarchs, but the vicar Of the Most High God.
With the assertion of this dogma the system of the Papacy was completed essentially and doctrinally, but not as yet practically. It had to wait the full development of the idea of vicarship, which was not till the days of Gregory VII. But here have we the embryotic seed — the vicarship, namely — out of which the vast structure of the Papacy has sprung. This it is that plants at the center of the system a pseudo-divine jurisdiction, and places the Pope above all bishops with their flocks, above all king with their subjects. This it is that gives the Pope two swords. This it is that gives him three crowns. The day when this dogma was proclaimed was the true birthday of the Popedom. The Bishop of Rome had till now sat in the seat of Caesar; henceforward he was to sit in the seat of God. From this time the growth of the Popedom was rapid indeed. The state of society favored its development. Night had descended upon the world from the North; and in the universal barbarism, the more prodigious any pretensions were, the more likely were they to find both belief and submission. The Goths, on arriving in their new settlements, beheld a religion which was served by magnificent cathedrals, imposing rites, and wealthy and powerful prelates, presided over by a chief priest, in whose reputed sanctity and ghostly authority they found again their own chief Druid. These rude warriors, who had overturned the throne of the Caesars, bowed down before the chair of the Popes. The evangelization of these tribes was a task of easy accomplishment. The “Catholic faith,” which they began to exchange for their Paganism or Arianism, consisted chiefly in their being able to recite the names of the objects of their worship, which they were left to adore with much the same rites as they had practiced in their native forests. They did not much concern themselves with the study of Christian doctrine, or the practice of Christian virtue. The age furnished but few manuals of the one, and still fewer models of the other.
The first of the Gothic princes to enter the Roman communion was Clovis, King of the Franks. In fulfillment of a vow which he had made on the field of Tolbiac, where he vanquished the Allemanni, Clovis was baptized in the Cathedral of Rheims (496), with every circumstance of solemnity which could impress a sense of the awfulness of the rife on the minds of its rude proselytes. Three thousand of his warlike subjects were baptized along with him. The Pope styled him “the eldest son of the Church,” a title which was regularly adopted by all the subsequent Kings of France. When Clovis ascended from the baptismal font he was the only as well as the eldest son of the Church, for he alone, of all the new chiefs that now governed the West, had as yet submitted to the baptismal rite.
The threshold once crossed, others were not slow to follow. In the next century, the sixth, the Burgundians of Southern Gaul, the Visigoths of Spain, the Suevi of Portugal, and the Anglo-Saxons of Britain entered the pale of Rome. In the seventh century the disposition was still growing among the princes of Western Europe to submit themselves and refer their disputes to the Pontiff as their spiritual father. National assemblies were held twice a year, under the sanction of the bishops. The prelates made use of these gatherings to procure enactments favorable to the propagation of the faith as held by Rome. These assemblies were first encouraged, then enjoined by the Pope, who came in this way to be regarded as a sort of Father or protector of the states of the West. Accordingly we find Sigismund, King of Burgundy, ordering (554) that all assembly should be held for the future on the 6th of September every year, “at which time the ecclesiastics are not so much engrossed with the worldly cares of husbandry.” The ecclesiastical conquest of Germany was in this century completed, and thus the spiritual dominions of the Pope were still farther extended.
In the eighth century there came a moment of supreme peril to Rome. At almost one and the same time she was menaced by two dangers, which threatened to sweep her out of existence, but which, in their issue, contributed to strengthen her dominion. On the west the victorious Saracens, having crossed the Pyrenees and overrun the south of France, were watering their steeds at the Loire, and threatening to descend upon Italy and plant the Crescent in the room of the Cross. On the north, the Lombards — who, under Alboin, had established themselves in Central Italy two centuries before — had burst the barrier of the Apennines, and were brandishing their swords at the gates of Rome. They were on the point of replacing Catholic orthodoxy with the creed of Arianism. Having taken advantage of the iconoclast disputes to throw off the imperial yoke, the Pope could expect no aid from the Emperor of Constantinople. He turned his eyes to France. The prompt and powerful interposition of the Frankish arms saved the Papal chair, now in extreme jeopardy. The intrepid Charles Martel drove back the Saracens (732), and Pepin, the Mayor of the palace, son of Charles Martel, who had just seized the throne, and needed the Papal sanction to color his usurpation, with equal promptitude hastened to the Pope’s help (Stephen II.) against the Lombards (754). Having vanquished them, he placed the keys of their towns upon the altar of St. Peter, and so laid the first foundation of the Pope’s temporal sovereignty. The yet more illustrious son of Pepin, Charlemagne, had to repeat this service in the Pope’s behalf. The Lombards becoming again troublesome, Charlemagne subdued them a second time. After his campaign he visited Rome (774). The youth of the city, bearing olive and palm branches, met him at the gates, the Pope and the clergy received him in the vestibule of St. Peter’s, and entering “into the sepulcher where the bones of the apostles lie,” he finally ceded to the pontiff the territories of the conquered tribes. It was in this way that Peter obtained his “patrimony,” the Church her dowry, and the Pope his triple crown.
The Pope had now attained two of the three grades of power that constitute his stupendous dignity. He had made himself a bishop of bishops, head of the Church, and he had become a crowned monarch. Did this content him? No! He said, “I will ascend the sides of the mount; I will plant my throne above the stars; I will be as God.” Not content with being a bishop of bishops, and so governing the whole spiritual affairs of Christendom, he aimed at becoming a king of kings, and so of governing the whole temporal affairs of the world. He aspired to supremacy, sole, absolute, and unlimited. This alone was wanting to complete that colossal fabric of power, the Popedom, and towards this the pontiff now began to strive.
Some of the arts had recourse to in order to grasp the coveted dignity were of an extraordinary kind. An astounding document, purporting to have been written in the fourth century, although unheard of till now, was in the year 776 brought out of the darkness in which it had been so long suffered to remain. It was the “Donation” or Testament of the Emperor Constantine. Constantine, says the legend, found Sylvester in one of the monasteries on Mount Soracte, and having mounted him on a mule, he took hold of his bridle rein, and walking all the way on foot, the emperor conducted Sylvester to Rome, and placed him upon the Papal throne. But this was as nothing compared with the vast and splendid inheritance which Constantine conferred on him, as the following quotation from the deed of gift to which we have referred will show: — “We attribute to the See of Peter all the dignity, all the glory, all the authority of the imperial power. Furthermore, we give to Sylvester and to his successors our palace of the Lateran, which is incontestably the finest palace on the earth; we give him our crown, our miter, our diadem, and all our imperial vestments; we transfer to him the imperial dignity. We bestow on the holy Pontiff in free gift the city of Rome, and all the western cities of Italy. To cede precedence to him, we divest ourselves of our authority over all those provinces, and we withdraw from Rome, transferring the seat of our empire to Byzantium; inasmuch as it is not proper that an earthly emperor should preserve the least authority, where God hath established the head of his religion.”
A rare piece of modesty this on the part of the Popes, to keep this invaluable document beside them for 400 years, and never say a word about it; and equally admirable the policy of selecting the darkness of the eighth century as the fittest time for its publication. To quote it is to refute it. It was probably forged a little before A.D. 754. It was composed to repel the Longobards on the one side, and the Greeks on the other, and to influence the mind of Pepin. In it, Constantine is made to speak in the Latin of the eighth century, and to address Bishop Sylvester as Prince of the Apostles, Vicar of Christ, and as having authority over the four great thrones, not yet set up, of Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem, and Constantinople. It was probably written by a priest of the Lateran Church, and it gained its object — that is, it led Pepin to bestow on the Pope the Exarchate of Ravenna, with twenty towns to furnish oil for the lamps in the Roman churches.
During more than 600 years Rome impressively cited this deed of gift, inserted it in her codes, permitted none to question its genuineness, and burned those who refused to believe in it. The first dawn of light in the sixteenth century sufficed to discover the cheat.
In the following century another document of a like extraordinary character was given to the world. We refer to the “Decretals of Isidore.” These were concocted about the year 845. They professed to be a collection of the letters, rescripts, and bulls of the early pastors of the Church of Rome — Anacletus, Clement, and others, down to Sylvester — the very men to whom the terms “rescript” and “bull” were unknown. The burden of this compilation was the pontifical supremacy, which it affirmed had existed from the first age. It was the clumsiest, but the most successful, of all the forgeries which have emanated from what the Greeks have reproachfully termed “the native home of inventions and falsifications of documents.” The writer, who professed to be living in the first century, painted the Church of Rome in the magnificence which she attained only in the ninth; and made the pastors of the first age speak in the pompous words of the Popes of the Middle Ages. Abounding in absurdities, contradictions, and anachronisms, it affords a measure of the intelligence of the age that accepted it as authentic. It was eagerly laid hold of by Nicholas I. to prop up and extend the fabric of his power. His successors made it the arsenal from which they drew their weapons of attack against both bishops and kings. It became the foundation of the canon law, and continues to be so, although there is not now a Popish writer who does not acknowledge it to be a piece of imposture. “Never,” says Father de Rignon, “was there seen a forgery so audacious, so extensive, so solemn, so persevering.” Yet the discovery of the fraud has not shaken the system. The learned Dupin supposes that these decretals were fabricated by Benedict, a deacon of Mainz, who was the first to publish them, and that, to give them greater currency, he prefixed to them the name of Isidore, a bishop who flourished in Seville in the seventh century. “Without the pseudo-Isidore,” says Janus, “there could have been no Gregory VII. The Isidorian forgeries were the broad foundation which the Gregorians built upon.”
All the while the Papacy was working on another line for the emancipation of its chief from interference and control, whether on the side of the people or on the side of the kings. In early times the bishops were elected by the people. By-and-by they came to be elected by the clergy, with consent of the people; but gradually the people were excluded from all share in the matter, first in the Eastern Church, and then in the Western, although traces of popular election are found at Milan so late as the eleventh century. The election of the Bishop of Rome in early times was in no way different from that of other bishops — that is, he was chosen by the people. Next, the consent of the emperor came to be necessary to the validity of the popular choice. Then, the emperor alone elected the Pope. Next, the cardinals claimed a voice in the matter; they elected and presented the object of their choice to the emperor for confirmation. Last of all, the cardinals took the business entirely into their own hands. Thus gradually was the way paved for the full emancipation and absolute supremacy of the Popedom.
 Hardouin, Acta Concil., tom. 1, col 325; Parisiis, 1715. Dupin, Eccles. Hist., vol. 1, p. 600; Dublin edition.
 Hard. 1. 1477; 2. 787,886. Baron. 6. 235.
 Muller, Univ. History, vol. 2, p. 21; Lond., 1818.
 Muller, vol. 2, p. 23.
 Muller, vol. 2, p. 74.
 We quote from the copy of the document in Pope Leo’s letter in Hardouin’s Collection. Epistola I., Leonis Papoe IX.; Acta Conciliorum et Epistoloe Decretales, tom. 6, pp. 934, 936; Parisiis, 1714. The English reader will find a copy of the pretended original document in full in Historical Essay on the Power of the Popes, vol. 2, Appendix, tr. from French; London, 1838.
 Etudes Religieuses, November, 1866.
 The Pope and the Council, by “Janus,” p. 105; London, 1869.
 The above statement regarding the mode of electing bishops during the first three centuries rests on the authority of Clement, Bishop of Rome, in the first century; Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage, in the third century; and of Gregory Nazianzen. See also De Dominis, De Repub. Eccles.; Blondel, Apologia; Dean Waddington; Barrow, Supremacy; and Mosheim, Eccl. Hist., cent. 1.
Via Apprising Ministries:
This is a bit of a follow up to the Apprising Ministries article James Robison to Pope Francis “In Christ We Are Brothers” where I showed you the video evidence of Robison’s repugnant apostasy on his Life Today TVy program for Monday, May 5, 2014 featuring fellow charismatic “Bishop” Tony Palmer.
As I showed you previously in the 2011 piece James Robison and Rick Warren Working to Reverse the Protestant Reformation, his spiritual adultery is nothing new; though it has become more blatant. Robison is certainly not alone in his lusting for the apostate Roman Catholic Church (RCC) to be considered a Christian denomination…
The sequence of the events of these prophecies suggest that the little blasphemous horn and the other 10 kings appear just after the collapse of the unified Roman Empire. That took place fully and finally in 476 AD. Historians agree that there have been an average of 10 kingdoms/countries in that formerly Roman territory ever since. The history of that period of the fall of Rome also testifies that in the vacuum of power left by the fallen caesars, the people of the city of Rome turned to the only other stable authority they knew: the Bishop of Rome. By the year 606 with the decree of the Emperor of Constantinople, Phocas, the Bishop of Rome was granted supreme religious authority over all of Europe and Byzantium. In this way the ruler of Rome became different from the other European kings: he was a political head in Rome, and he was a religious head in all of Europe. Called, “papa” or “pope” by the citizens of Rome, the Pope continued to be the ruler of the city of Rome until Victor Emmanuel, the King of Italy seized the city of Rome as the capitol of Italy in 1876. Since then, the Pope is only a religious figure-head. He no longer has military, political, temporal dominion. The time of his temporal reign, during which time he had dominion over God’s people, can be measured, for example, from 606 AD until 1876 AD: 1260 years (Dan 7:25, 12:7, Rev 11:2-3, 12:6, 14, 13:5).
This period of the reign of what we call “the antichrist”…