All posts by Meg

Rome’s Counter-Reformation Tactics (Updated)

A helpful series from Sound of the Alarm on Rome’s Counter-Reformation tactics can be read at these links:

Part 1 – Introduces Rome’s tactics as Institution, Inquisition, Intransigence, Invention, Insurgence, Indoctrination, Insinuation, and Infiltration.

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2017/11/rome-counter-reformation-tactics.html

Part 2 – A look at Institution and particularly the Jesuits

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2017/11/rome-counter-reformation-tactics-1.html

Part 3 – A  look at Inquisition

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2017/11/rome-counter-reformation-tactics-2.html

Part 4 – A look at Intransigence and particularly the Council of Trent

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2017/11/rome-counter-reformation-tactics-3.html

Part 5 – A look at Invention and the Index of Forbidden Books

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2017/12/romes-counter-reformation-tactics-4.html

Part 6 – A look at Insurgence

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2018/01/romes-counter-reformation-tactics-5.html

Part 7 – Rome’s Counter-Reformation Tactics #5 Insurgence Part 2

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2018/02/romes-counter-reformation-tactics-5.html

Part 8 – Rome’s Counter-Reformation Tactics #5 Insurgence Part 3

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.ca/2018/04/romes-counter-reformation-tactics-5.html

Part 9 – Rome’s Counter-Reformation Tactics #6 Indoctrination Baroque Art

http://soundofanalarm.blogspot.com/2019/01/romes-counter-reformation-tactics-6.html

All Prophecies of Daniel 11 Fulfilled!

Bryan T. Huie via James Japan:

The longest continuous prophecy in the Bible is found in the 11th chapter of Daniel. It details events affecting the Jews from the 5th to the 1st centuries BCE. According to the internal dating of Daniel, it was compiled during the mid-6th century BCE. However, the prophecies found in Daniel (especially chapter 11) have caused some liberal Bible scholars to assign a much later date to the book of Daniel…

Read more: http://www.jamesjpn.net/eschatology/daniel-11-fulfilled-before-christ/

Seven Events Evangelicals Incorrectly Believe Will be Fulfilled in the Endtime

James Arendt:

  1. There is no seven-year countdown to Armageddon – prophesied in the Bible. The Scripture used to support a final 7 years is Daniel 9:27: And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week… Protestant Christians up to the 19th century used to teach the seven year confirmation of the Covenant was fulfilled in Christ and His Apostles up to the stoning of Stephen…

Read more: http://www.jamesjpn.net/basic-bible/seven-events-evangelicals-think-will-happen-but-wont/

The genesis of the government of the church of Rome, plus the testimony of Jerome in general

DTK on the Puritan Board:

Perhaps the most scholarly treatment of the genesis of the earliest church structure in Rome is that of the work of Peter Lampe, From Paul to Valentinus: Christians at Rome in the First Two Centuries, trans. Michael Steinhauser (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003).

Peter Lampe: Thesis: The fractionation in Rome favored a collegial presbyterial system of governance and prevented for a long time, until the second half of the second century, the development of a monarchical episcopacy in the city. Victor (c. 189-99) was the first who, after faint-hearted attempts by Eleutherus (c. 175-89), Soter (c. 166-75), and Anicetus (c. 155-66), energetically stepped forward as monarchical bishop and (at times, only because he was incited from the outside) attempted to place the different groups in the city under his supervision or, where that was not possible, to draw a line by means of excommunication. Before the second half of the second century there was in Rome no monarchical episcopacy for the circles mutually bound in fellowship. Peter Lampe, From Paul to Valentinus: Christians at Rome in the First Two Centuries, trans. Michael Steinhauser (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003), p. 397.

Peter Lampe: It was useful to assign to someone in Rome the work connected with eternal communication. Hermas knows such a person by the name of Clement. In The Shepherd of Hermas, Vision 2.4.3, Hermas prepares two copies of his small book and sends (πέμπω, within the city) one of them to Clement, who forwards it “to the cities outside, for he is entrusted with that task” (πέμψει Κλήμης εἰς τὰς ἔξω πόλεις, ἐκείνῳ γὰρ ἐπιτέτραπται).
It is important to note that Hermas’s “minister of external affairs” is not a monarchical bishop. In the second next sentence, Hermas describes how he circulates his little book within the city. He makes it known “to this city together with the presbyters who preside over the church” (εἰς ταύτην τὴν πόλιν μετὰ τῶν πρεσβυτέρων τῶν προϊσταμένων τῆς ἐκκλησίας). A plurality of presbyters leads Roman Christianity. This Christianity, conscious of spiritual fellowship with the city, is summed up under the concept “ecclesia,” but that changes nothing in regard to the plurality of those presiding over it. In Vis. 3.9.7, Hermas also calls them προηγούμενοι [ verb roughly trans. “leading,” but can function as a noun] or πρωτοκαθεδρίται. See Peter Lampe, From Paul to Valentinus: Christians at Rome in the First Two Centuries, trans. Michael Steinhauser (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003), p. 398.

Hermas: Therefore you will write two little books, and you will send one to Clement and one to Grapte. Then Clement will send it to the cities abroad, because that is his job. But Grapte will instruct the widows and orphans. But you yourself will read it to this city, along with the elders (i.e., presbyters, πρεσβυτέρων) who preside over the church. See J. B. Lightfoot and J.R. Harmer, eds. And trans., The Apostolic Fathers: Greek Texts and English Translations of Their Writings, 2nd Edition, The Shepherd of Hermas, Vision 2.4.3 (Grand Rapids: Babke Book House, 1992), pp. 345-347.
Greek text: Γράψεις οὖν δύο βιβλαρίδια καὶ πέμψεις ἓν Κλήμεντι καὶ ἓν Γραπτῇ. πέμψει οὖν Κλήμης εἰς τὰς ἔξω πόλεις, ἐκείνῳ γὰρ ἐπιτέτραπται. Γραπτὴ δὲ νουθετήσει τὰς χήρας καὶ τοὺς ὀρφανούς. σὺ δὲ ἀναγνώσῃ εἰς ταύτην τὴν πόλιν μετὰ τῶν πρεσβυτέρων τῶν προϊσταμένων τῆς ἐκκλησίας. Sancti Hermae Pastor, Liber I, Visio II, Caput IV, §3, PG 2:900.

The two following Jesuit scholars concur . . .

Klaus Schatz, S.J.: In fact, this “letter of Clement,” written around 95, is the first document indicating that the Roman community felt responsible for other churches. Its name is a subsequent addition, of course: according to Hegesippus’s list of bishops Clement was a bishop of Rome at that time, the third in succession. However, he is not named as the author of the letter; instead, the true sender is the Roman community. We probably cannot say for certain that there was a bishop of Rome at that time. It seems likely that the Roman church was governed by a group of presbyters from where there quickly emerged a presider or “first among equals” whose name was remembered and who was subsequently described as “bishop” after the mid-second century. Klaus Schatz, S.J., Papal Primacy: From Its Origins to the Present, trans. John A. Otto and Linda M. Maloney (Collegeville: The Liturgical Press, 1996), p. 4.

Francis A. Sullivan, S.J.: There exists a broad concensus among scholars, including most Catholic ones, that such churches as those of Alexandria, Philippi, Corinth and Rome most probably continued to be led for some time by a college of presbyters, and that only during the course of the second century did the threefold structure become generally the rule, with a bishop, assisted by presbyters, presiding over each local church. Francis A. Sullivan, S.J., From Apostles to Bishops: The Development of the Episcopacy in the Early Church (New York: The Newman Press, 2001), p. 15.

Another Jesuit scholar expresses serious doubt (well, more than doubt) regarding the founding of the early Roman church by Peter . . .

Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J.: If some of the Roman sojourners in Jerusalem were among the three thousand Jews converted to Christianity according to the Lucan account (Acts 2:10-11,41), they may have formed the nucleus of the Christian community in Rome on their return there. Thus the Roman Christian community would have had its matrix in the Jewish community, possibly as early as the 30s, and thus was made up at first of Jewish Christians and God-fearing Gentiles (or even of proselytoi, Acts 2:11, also mentioned in Roman Jewish funerary inscriptions), who had associated themselves with Jews of Rome. Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J., Romans, A New Translation with introduction and Commentary, The Anchor Bible Series (New York: Doubleday, 1993), p. 29.

Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J.: A more reliable tradition associated Paul with Peter as “founders” of the Roman community, not in the sense that they first brought Christian faith there, but because both of them eventually worked there and suffered martyrdom there (or in its immediate environs), and because their mortal remains were in possession of the Roman church (see Ignatius, Rom. 4.3; Irenaeus, Adversus Haereses 3.1.1, 3.3.2 [SC 211.22-23, 32-33]). Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J., Romans, A New Translation with introduction and Commentary, The Anchor Bible Series (New York: Doubleday, 1993), p. 30.

Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J.: In any case, Paul never hints in Romans that he knows that Peter has worked in Rome or founded the Christian church there before his planned visit (cf. 15:20-23). If he refers indirectly to Peter as among the “superfine apostles” who worked in Corinth (2 Cor 11:4-5), he says nothing like that about Rome in this letter. Hence the beginnings of the Roman Christian community remain shrouded in mystery. Compare 1 Thess 3:2-5; 1 Cor 3:5-9; and Col 1:7 and 4:12-13 for more or less clear references to founding apostles of other locales. Hence there is no reason to think that Peter spent any major portion of time in Rome before Paul wrote his letter, or that he was the founder of the Roman church or the missionary who first brought Christianity to Rome. For it seems highly unlikely that Luke, if he knew that Peter had gone to Rome and evangelized that city, would have omitted all mention of it in Acts. Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J., Romans, A New Translation with introduction and Commentary, The Anchor Bible Series (New York: Doubleday, 1993), p. 30.

Fitzmyer gives his view of the probable origin of the Church at Rome and then states that “we know nothing of its evangelization by an apostle, even though a later tradition associated that with Mark the evangelist (Eusebius, Historia ecclesiastica 2.16.1).” Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J., Romans, A New Translation with introduction and Commentary, The Anchor Bible Series (New York: Doubleday, 1993), p. 30.

Fitzmyer then goes on to cite the anonymous early church writer whom Erasmus designated as Ambrosiaster . . .

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384) stated that the Romans “have embraced the faith of Christ, albeit according to the Jewish rite, without seeing any sign of mighty works, or any of the apostles.” In Epistolam Ad Romanos, Prologus, PL 17:46.

Now then, Notice Jerome’s comments regarding presbyters and bishops . . .

Jerome (347-420): For when the apostle clearly teaches that presbyters are the same as bishops, must not a mere server of tables and of widows be insane to set himself up arrogantly over men through whose prayers the body and blood of Christ are produced? Do you ask for proof of what I say? Listen to this passage: “Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi with the bishops and deacons.” Do you wish for another instance? In the Acts of the Apostles Paul thus speaks to the priests of a single church: “Take heed unto yourselves and to all the flock, in the which the Holy Ghost hath made you bishops, to feed the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.” And lest any should in a spirit of contention argue that there must then have been more bishops than one in a single church, there is the following passage which clearly proves a bishop and a presbyter to be the same. NPNF2: Vol. VI, The Letters of St. Jerome, Letter 146 – To Evangelus, §1.

Jerome (347-420): Of the names presbyter and bishop the first denotes age, the second rank. In writing both to Titus and to Timothy the apostle speaks of the ordination of bishops and of deacons, but says not a word of the ordination of presbyters; for the fact is that the word bishops includes presbyters also. Again when a man is promoted it is from a lower place to a higher. Either then a presbyter should be ordained a deacon, from the lesser office, that is, to the more important, to prove that a presbyter is inferior to a deacon; or if on the other hand it is the deacon that is ordained presbyter, this latter should recognize that, although he may be less highly paid than a deacon, he is superior to him in virtue of his priesthood. In fact as if to tell us that the traditions handed down by the apostles were taken by them from the old testament, bishops, presbyters and deacons occupy in the church the same positions as those which were occupied by Aaron, his sons, and the Levites in the temple. NPNF2: Vol. VI, The Letters of St. Jerome, Letter 146 – To Evangelus, §2.

Jerome (347-420): In both epistles [i.e., 1 Timothy & Titus] commandment is given that only monogamists should, be chosen for the clerical office whether as bishops or as presbyters. Indeed with the ancients these names were synonymous, one alluding to the office, the other to the age of the clergy. NPNF2: Vol. VI, The Letters of St. Jerome, Letter 69 – To Oceanus, §3.

Jerome (347-420): And I do not say this because I have anything to blame in the mission itself, except certain partialities which beget suspicion, but because you ought rather to clear yourself in the actual presence of your questioners. You begin with the words, “You have sent a most devoted servant of God, the presbyter Isidore, a man of influence no less from the dignity of his very gait and dress than from that of his divine understanding, to heal those whose souls are grievously sick; would that they had any sense of their illness! A man of God sends a man of God.” No difference is made between a priest and a bishop (presbyterum et episcopum); the same dignity belongs to the sender and the sent; this is lame enough; the ship, as the saying goes; is wrecked in harbor. NPNF2: Vol. VI, To Pammachius Against John of Jerusalem, §37. See Contra Joannem Hierosolymitanum, §37, PL 23:390.
Latin text: Nec hoc dico, quod praeter amicitias, quae suspicionem generant, quidquam in legatione reprehendam; sed quia apud interrogantes magis et praesentes te purgare debueris. “Misisti religiosissimum hominem Dei Isidorum presbyterum, virum potentem tam ex ipsa incessus et habitus dignitate, quam divinae intelligentiae, curare etiam eos, qui animo vehementer aegrotant; si tamen sensum sui languoris habeant. Homo Dei mittit hominem Dei.” Nihil interest inter presbyterum et episcopum; eadem dignitas mittentis et missi: hoc satis imperite: in portu, ut dicitur, naufragium. Contra Joannem Hierosolymitanum, §37, PL 23:390.

Jerome (347-420): Therefore, as we have shown, among the ancients presbyters were the same as bishops; but by degrees, that the plants of dissension might be rooted up, all responsibility was transferred to one person.
Therefore, as the presbyters know that it is by the custom of the Church that they are to be subject to him who is placed over them so let the bishops know that they are above presbyters rather by custom than by Divine appointment, and ought to rule the Church in common, following the example of Moses, who, when he alone had power to preside over the people Israel, chose seventy, with the assistance of whom he might judge the people. We see therefore what kind of presbyter or bishop should be ordained. John Harrison, Whose Are the Fathers? (London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1867), p.488. See also Karl Von Hase, Handbook to the Controversy with Rome, trans. A. W. Streane, Vol. 1, 2nd ed. rev. (London: The Religious Tract Society, 1909), p. 164. Cf. also
Thomas P. Scheck, trans., St. Jerome’s Commentaries on Galatians, Titus, and Philemon (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 2010), p. 290.
Latin text: Haec propterea, ut ostenderemus apud veteres eosdem fuisse presbyteros quos et episcopos: paulatim vero ut dissensionum plantaria evellerentur, ad unum omnem sollicitudinem esse delatam. Sicut ergo presbyteri sciunt se ex Ecclesiae consuetudine ei qui sibi praepositus fuerit, esse subjectos: ita episcopi noverint se magis consuetudine, quam dispositionis Dominicae veritate, presbyteris esse majores, et in commune debere Ecclesiam regere, imitantes Moysen, qui cum haberet in potestate solum praeesse populo Israel, septuaginta elegit, cum quibus populum judicaret. Videamus igitur qualis presbyter, sive episcopus ordinandus sit. Commentariorum In Epistolam Ad Titum, PL 26:563.

J. N. D. Kelly: Particularly interesting is his [i.e., Jerome, examples given above] view that in the apostolic age the terms ‘bishop’ and ‘presbyter’ were synonymous, each church being governed by a committee of coequal presbyters. The emergence of the episcopate proper, he argues (much to the embarrassment of Catholics down the centuries), was due, not to any ordinance of the Lord, but to ecclesiastical custom, with the object of excluding divisions. J. N. D. Kelly, Jerome: His Life, Writings, and Controversies (Peabody: Hendrickson Publishers, 2000), p. 147.

Source: https://puritanboard.com/threads/the-genesis-of-the-government-of-the-church-of-rome-plus-the-testimony-of-jerome-in-general.97729/

“The presbyter is the same as the bishop, and before parties had been raised up in religion by the provocations of Satan, the churches were governed by the Senate of the presbyters. But as each one sought to appropriate to himself those whom he had baptized, instead of leading them to Christ, it was appointed that one of the presbyters, elected by his colleagues, should be set over all the others, and have chief supervision over the general well-being of the community. . . Without doubt it is the duty of the presbyters to bear in mind that by the discipline of the Church they are subordinated to him who has been given them as their head, but it is fitting that the bishops, on their side, do not forget that if they are set over the presbyters, it is the result of tradition, and not by the fact of a particular institution by the Lord” (Jerome, Commentary on Titus 1:7)

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?search=cross+crescent&title=Special%3ASearch&go=Go&ns0=1&ns6=1&ns12=1&ns14=1&ns100=1&ns106=1, #4

Rome in the News, April 2019

Some recent Rome and eschatology-related headlines:

Pope Francis security scare in Morocco as man sprints towards King Mohammed’s car and is tackled by his guards while the pontiff looks on during visit to build Christian-Muslim ties

Pope: God Wants Catholic/Muslim Fraternity

Revealed: Irish bishop was accused of raping his own niece when she was just five and faced another two accusations of child sexual abuse before his death

Nuns sexually abusing minors could become next Catholic Church scandal, experts say

New York Archdiocese names 120 priests ‘credibly accused’ of child sex abuse as cardinal begs for forgiveness ‘for the failings of those clergy’

Jehovah’s Witnesses ‘kept a secret database of tens of thousands of child molesters for two decades and hid it from the authorities’

Joe Biden the Vatican candidate of choice for 2020

Pope sends aid to migrants stranded at the US border

It Begins: Former UN Under-Secretary-General Calls For One World Currency

Islam: The West’s ‘Most Formidable and Persistent Enemy’

Notre Dame: An Omen

Jihadi Ideologue Celebrates Notre Dame Cathedral Fire, Threatens Jihad Against France

CHRISLAM RISING: French President Macron Says The Roman Catholic Notre Dame Cathedral In Paris Should Be Rebuilt With Muslim Minarets To ‘Reflect Diversity’ Of France

Vatican Cardinal Warns the West ‘Will Disappear’ Due to Mass Migration

Nigeria: Jihad against Christians

 

Reflections on the Hitchcock-Hanegraff Debate on Revelation

Read an interesting discussion here:

https://puritanboard.com/threads/reflections-on-the-hitchcock-hanegraff-debate-on-revelation.96390/

SBC Prez: God Says We Need to Shut Up About the Reformation

JD Greear, SBC President:

Basically what God says through Amos is if you’ll let me put it in colloquial language, “will you shut up about Gilgal and Beersheba?” I’m sick and tired of hearing about those places because I’m not a God who moved in the past. I’m a God who wants to move today in your present. I almost think, I’m on dangerous ground here…I almost think that God is saying to us “shut up about the Reformation.”

Source: https://pulpitandpen.org/2019/01/09/sbc-prez-god-says-we-need-to-shut-up-about-the-reformation/

The Vatican-China Accord Betrays Chinese Roman Catholics

Shaun Willcock at Bible Based Ministries:

In September 2018, after a long period of contact between the two, came the news that the Vatican and Red China had signed an agreement which would permit the Chinese Communist government to have the final say in the appointment of Roman Catholic bishops in China.

Expressing what millions of Roman Catholics felt, the signing was described as “a shocking development to many” by a Roman Catholic source.[1]  An understatement of note.

Just what was going on?

For many decades, the Chinese Communist government has claimed the right to control all religious activity in China, and has brutally clamped down on all who dissent: Protestants, Papists and others.  This approach to religion is of course in accordance with old-style Communist principles, to which China subscribes wholeheartedly.  The State must be all-powerful, according to Communist ideology; and in Communist countries like China and Russia (the old USSR), not to mention many others, the only religions permitted by the State to exist are State-sanctioned, State-controlled ones.  In this way the Reds give the appearance of permitting religious freedom while simultaneously controlling religions with an iron fist.

Following its anti-religious policy, China claimed the right to appoint Chinese Roman Catholic bishops, as well as Protestant ministers and all other religious leaders.   The Vatican strongly opposed the State appointment of bishops for all these years.  As a consequence, two “Catholic Churches” existed in China: the official, State-controlled one, known as the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, the priests and bishops of which were not in subjection to the Vatican and were in fact Communist agents; and an underground, illegal one, the priests and bishops of which remained loyal to the Vatican.  The latter, being orthodox Roman Catholics, suffered persecution at the hands of the Chinese government for many years.

But with the signing of this agreement, all future bishops of the Chinese Roman Catholic “Church” would first be approved by the Chinese government – with the blessing and co-operation of the Vatican!

Read more: http://www.biblebasedministries.co.uk/2019/02/23/the-vatican-china-accord-betrays-chinese-roman-catholics/

The Elimination of Christianity

Bruce Charlton, Comment 11, offers a very insightful assessment of current world events:

The covert but implict aim of US/ UK/ EU/ UN etc. interventions in Syria (like other places) seems to be the elimination of Christianity in the Middle East.

Despite 1400 years of Islam, the religion had survived in considerable numbers as as a large minority, until the ‘Arab Spring’…

…Apparently, the Western powers have achieved in less than a decade what more than 1000 years of Islam did not.

I have heard a detailed first hand report of the Middle East situation for Christians from a trustwothy and experienced eyewitness that details all this, but see also:

http://www.aina.org/reports/utrmcfsi.pdf

also: https://barnabasfund.org/en

The historicists I have read predicted that in our days there would be a worldwide alliance aimed at destroying true Christianity once and for all.  This seems to fit.  May the devil’s empire fall swiftly and soon.

Vindicated: Vatican Insider who Accused Francis I of a Cover-Up

Shaun Willcock at Bible Based Ministries:

Some six months ago in September 2018, I wrote an article entitled Top-Ranking Vatican Insider Accuses Francis I of a Cover-Up,[1] about the allegations made by retired Roman Catholic archbishop, Carlo Maria Viganò, against his pope, Francis I, in August 2018.  Viganò, a former Vatican nuncio (ambassador) to the United States under popes Benedict and Francis, described as a top-ranking Vatican “insider”, released an open letter alleging that Francis had known, at least five years before, about the sexual molestation of seminarians (young male students for the priesthood) by a former cardinal named Theodore McCarrick, because he (Viganò) had told him about it in June 2013; and yet Francis had done nothing about it.

McCarrick reportedly invited seminarians to his beach house, where he shared a bed with them.  “McCarrick was using the Catholic seminary at Seton Hall as a harem.  His boy-toys were given rapid promotions.  Those not into [sodomy] were shunted aside.  McCarrick’s power was such that even men not in his ‘circle’ were afraid to come forward…”[2]  By the late 1990s all this was in fact an open secret among New Jersey’s Roman Catholics where McCarrick was archbishop, and was often discussed by priests and nuns.[3]

Following a ruling in June 2018 on two of the allegations against him by a New York archdiocesan tribunal, which judged that the allegations were “credible”, McCarrick resigned from the College of Cardinals.  This step was described as “very shocking, very unusual, hasn’t happened in decades”.[4]

Nevertheless, Francis himself had done nothing, even though the allegations against McCarrick had been known for so many years.  And in light of this failure to act, Viganò actually took the astounding step of urging Francis to resign.

Viganò’s open letter threw the Vatican of Francis into a major crisis, with pro-Francis prelates scrambling wildly to contain the damage as the ripples spread out across the globe.  But it turns out that Viganò was right all along – and has now been vindicated.

Let us backtrack somewhat, to remind readers about his allegations, and then see what has now happened to vindicate him.

Read more: http://www.biblebasedministries.co.uk/2019/04/02/vindicated-vatican-insider-who-accused-francis-i-of-a-cover-up/