The Pope in Prophecy — Angel or Antichrist?

Lightening Strikes VaticanAn Amazing Fact: Shortly after Benedict XVI announced his unprecedented resignation, thunderclouds rolled over Vatican City—and a lightning bolt struck the dome of St. Peter’s Cathedral! Many wondered if this was just a coincidence or an ominous harbinger of a new era. What do you believe?

Very few Christians today remember why Protestants protested. Let me explain … 

This has been a very notable year for the Catholic Church, beginning with the surprising resignation of Pope Benedict XVI. The aged pontiff cited poor health, but many wondered if there was more to the story. For years now, the Vatican has been rocked by one scandal after another. Some speculate that Benedict “fell on his sword” to get rid of a disloyal cabinet in one sweeping move.

New Pope, Old Prophecy
Then as “all the world wondered” and watched, an Argentinian cardinal, Jorge Bergoglio, was introduced as the new pope. This was not only a significant event for 1.2 billion Catholics worldwide; it should have alarmed Protestants for a number of profound reasons.

First, we know that Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, Knox, Edwards, Wesley, and Spurgeon—just to name a few—identified the Roman Catholic Church as the beast of Revelation 13. During the Reformation, thousands returned to the Scriptures and discovered the truth about Jesus. Unfortunately today, most Protestants and evangelicals have all but forgotten what distinguishes them from Catholicism.

Please don’t get me wrong. Pope Francis might be a wonderful individual, and I support his modesty and conservative views on marriage and abortion. Furthermore, I expect to meet millions of former and current Catholics in heaven. Remember, we are not talking about individuals—but rather Catholicism’s official views in relation to Scripture. 

For example, have we overlooked the pope’s claim to be God on earth? “We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty.” —Pope Leo XIII 

Church History
This is why I am so surprised to hear so many Protestant leaders fawning over this new pope, the first Jesuit elected. Shouldn’t it be at least a little troubling to Bible believers like you and me? 

In fact, it was the Jesuit Francisco Ribera (1537-1591) who invented and popularized the Left Behind interpretation of prophecy found in that blockbuster series of books—now being remade into a new movie backed by Hollywood star power. It’s true! He created an entirely different interpretation of prophecy that pointed away from the pope as antichrist. 

Amazingly, 450 years later, nearly 96 percent of all Protestant Christians have abandoned what the reformers taught and accepted the Jesuit interpretation of prophecy! 

Protestant Amnesia
We shouldn’t be surprised that so much has changed. All of this was foretold in the book The Great Controversy

“The Protestant churches are in great darkness, or they would discern the signs of the times. The Roman Church … 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.” 

Of course, the Vatican has international influence because it is not only a church—it is also a political power! In 1929 Vatican City was established as an independent state smaller than a golf course and has fewer than 1,000 residents. Despite its diminutive size, however, the Vatican wields profound power, controlling vast wealth with its own bank and accepting eager ambassadors and tourists flocking to its doors from around the world. 

This global influence is being carefully manipulated to further their teachings. The problem is that much of what the Roman Church teaches is baptized paganism mingled with Christian traditions. And many Protestants today are allowing culture and feelings to override clear biblical teaching, exchanging sola Scriptura for the traditions of men. That's why I am offering a special resource that compares some of the major deviations between Scripture and Catholic theology. 10 Doctrinal Deviations

What's Next?
I hope you don’t mind my emphasis on prophecy, but sadly, there are few voices heard from Protestant pulpits today contesting the Jesuit agenda. Yet you can rest assured that Amazing Facts is committed to sounding the warning trumpet for Jesus and biblical truth—no matter the cost to us. 

“For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth. Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you” (2 Peter 1:12, 13 NKJV). 

Friend, that’s why I especially need your help: to give the trumpet a clear note (1 Corinthians 14:8). Jesus said it is the truth that will set people free (John 8:32). It’s not a popular message we share, but it is God’s message. 

Amazing Facts has been producing a full-length documentary that will, in a loving but direct way, expose the beast of Revelation for what it really is—the antichrist—and call people out of Babylon. We are nearing the conclusion of this project, but we will need significant financial help to finalize it. 

If you recognize that we must stand for truth at all costs, will you join me by sending a generous gift to help us complete the Revelation: Prophecy’s Hidden History project, to continue our mission of evangelism, and get the message out to rekindle the light of the Reformation? 

I know God will bless you, friend, as you make a sacrificial investment in Jesus’ kingdom. 

Boldly proclaiming together, 

Pastor Doug Batchelor  

Pastor Doug

 
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