by Richard Bennett and Robert J. Nicholson
New Partnership with Muslims
In his message to the predominately Muslim nation of Kazakhstan twelve days after the horrors of September 11th, 2001, the Pope declared,
He then gave a false Gospel. Building a “civilization of love”, he said, is the task of Christians and Muslims. His exact words;were,
His final prayer was for a partnership between “Christians and Muslims”. His words were,
In spite of the catastrophic events of September 11th, the Pope has continued faithfully the Roman Catholic Church policy of affirmation and approval of Islam. The Vatican speaks officially of the Roman Catholic Church having the same God and faith of Abraham as the Muslims,
The Roman Catholic Church officially declares that the One God of Holy Scripture is also the God of Islam. It also esteems the moral life of Islam, the affirmation of which follows,
It is clear from this official recognition that the Church of Rome’s estimation of Islam has experienced a fundamental change. The Biblical commandment not to venerate any strange god has been broken by Rome in order to credit Islam and its adherents with holding to the faith of Abraham. Patently, this novel re-assessment of the Muslim faith represents a major shift in the political policy of the Vatican. These official statements are carefully constructed religious discourse. They are aimed at engendering a new mood of respectful rapprochement and mutual understanding between the Papacy and Islam. As a device of diplomatic exchange, they show clearly that a new interfaith-ecumenicity is being propounded by Rome with the singular objective of embracing Islam and its peoples within a new international community of religious life and faith, a community incidentally, in which Rome enjoys priority as founder and senior partner.
Islam rejects Trinity, Christ’s divinity, His sacrifice
Christians believe in One God, in which One Godhead there exists Three Persons. Islam rejects this concept as blasphemous. The Qur’an declares,
The Bible proclaims Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross in place of the believer, "In Whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.”7 Islam passionately rejects the crucifixion of Christ Jesus. Thus the Qur’an declares, “And their saying: Surely we have killed the Messiah, Isa son of Marium, the apostle of Allah; and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it appeared to them so (like Isa) and most surely those who differ therein are only in a doubt about it; they have no knowledge respecting it, but only follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for sure.” (Surah 4:157).
The Bible proclaims Christ Jesus as divine, being the brightness of the divine glory, and the express image of God. In the Qur’an Christ Jesus is debased to being solely an apostle of Allah. Thus the Qur’an states, “O followers of the Book! do not exceed the limits in your religion, and do not speak (lies) against Allah, but (speak) the truth; the Messiah, Isa son of Marium is only an apostle of Allah…” (Surah 4.171) Christ Jesus declared, “Before Abraham was, I am.”8 “I and my Father are one.”9 “I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.”10 A religion that rejects Christ’s divinity is dead in its sins. It is an absurd blasphemy that the Pope declares that the one, living and subsistent God of the Bible is the same one as the infidel god of Islam.
The Gospel and the Qur’an’s religious philosophy
In the Bible the Gospel is as the Apostle John declared, “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.”11 “And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.”12 The whole purpose of the God of Scripture is clearly seen in the reason why the Gospel of John was written, “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” This is totally different from the god of Islam who orders fighting, war, and punishment, by murder, crucifixion and amputation. The following is just a sample of the primary concept of fighting for Allah that the Qur’an requires:
The commandment of the Lord is as different as darkness and light, for He says, “Love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.”13 While many individual Muslims may deplore atrocities committed in the name of Islam, it cannot be denied that these atrocities are justifiedand encouraged by Islamic teaching. Even the most moderate form of Islam is incompatible with Biblical truth.
RCC dogma on Islam changed
Nonetheless, after six centuries of condemning of Islam and two centuries of Crusades against the Muslims, modern Roman Catholicism is welcoming and affirming the religion of Mohammed. Rome now accepts Islam as having the same faith of Abraham as herself. How can the Roman Catholic Church espouse a religion that utterly rejects the Trinity, the divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ and His Gospel? Clearly, the Roman Catholic Church still plays the adaptable chameleon — for since Vatican Council II, she has in Muslim circles embraced Islam to the extent that she calls praiseworthy that which she once had denounced as evil and the object of war.
In 1095, Pope Urban II called for a “War of the Cross,” or a Crusade, to retake the holy lands from the infidel Muslim Turks. Several versions of his speech at the end of a Church Council have survived. Although we cannot be sure of the exact words the Pope used, the substance however is the same. The heart and mind of papal power in twelfth and thirteenth centuries is seen in these sentences, “All who die by the way, whether by land or by sea, or in battle against the pagans, shall have immediate remission of sins. This I grant them through the power of God with which I am invested.”14
The present Pope and his Church uphold the teaching that the definitions of all Roman Pontiffs pertaining to faith or morals of the Roman Pontiff are “irreformable by their very nature.”15 If the present Roman Pontiff, John Paul II, has proclaimed Muslims to be acceptable as believers, then by that same proclamation, Urban II and the whole line of Crusading Popes have been proven to be damnable heretics, since they condemned Muslims and fought against them!
Emotional unity and its consequences
The ecumenism of the Papacy with Islam is of grave concern for the true body of Christ to consider. The Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II sees himself as the one capable of bringing in a New World Order, in which Rome will be the Mother and Lawmaker. Through his Vatican II documents the Pope declares, “The encouragement of unity is in harmony with the deepest nature of the [Roman Catholic] Church’s mission….”16 On an highly emotional spiritual level there has been a great common-ground meeting place between Rome and Mecca in the town of Fatima in Portugal. To quote a Catholic news organization, “Our Lady of Fatima is really Fatima, daughter of the Prophet Mohammed…On October 23, 1995, Iranian television began running stories that the apparitions in Fatima, Portugal in 1917 were religious phenomena of Muslim origin.”17 Islam teaches that men can achieve favor with God by what a person does. On the Fatima site in Portugal May 13th 2000, the Pope proclaimed a message that could be readily accepted by both Muslims and Catholics. “‘Pray, pray much and make sacrifices for sinners; many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray and make sacrifices for them’....”18
Heroic deeds to win the approval of God appeal to the natural man, including the devout Muslim; it is, however, light years away from the Gospel of grace. The Pope’s message, and the message and veneration of heroism in Islam are a total negation of the Gospel, “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us.... ”19 In practice both systems — a mammoth one billion adherents each — are totalitarian, synthesizing spiritual and civil power in their doctrinal presentations and cultic practices. The global hierarchy and infrastructure of the RCC, however, is far more developed than that of Islam.20 The bringing together of both under the Roman Pontiff, who calls himself the Vicar of Christ, would make for a political powerhouse of vast consequences.
Pope’s message echoed by Bush and Muslim Leaders
The drawing of governments and religions even more closely into a global coalition before a politically constructed god has already begun. Rome has many times shown herself as the one to whom all can come for unity within her. Islam as such is still accepted as a valid religion, and the terrorists of September understood to be fallen from their religion, rather than upholding its teachings. In the words of President George W. Bush, “These murderers have hijacked a great religion in order to justify their evil deeds. And we cannot let it stand.”21 The Muslims themselves are giving the same message. For example, the Associated Press reported,
This spin on Islam is perfectly in line with what Pope and the Vatican declared, “together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”23 It looks as if the Pope, the politicians, and the Muslims continue to conceal successfully the history of Mohammed and the contents of his Qur’an.
A Trumpet Call to the True Church
The Pope's profession of a ‘civilization of love’ in his rapprochement with Islam represents only another tactical re-appraisal of circumstances and opportunities for Rome. It is merely the old idol of humanistic sentiment religiously recycled and held out to the world as the cohesive force that will unite all sincere religious people in a concordat of international condemnation against the kind of anti-social fanaticism that led to the September 11th horror. The profound danger for Evangelical people is that they, unthinking, might come to embrace Rome’s claim to be the true spokesman for Christ on this earth, a lie which is deeply embedded in this new thrust for inter-faith ecumenicity. The Pope is not a first among equals as a bishop. Frankly, he is not even a bishop in the biblical sense of the term. Karol Wojtyla is the head of a totalitarian hierarchy. Its position as the restored Holy Roman Empire is depicted in the Bible. He is an absolute monarch. He has his own secular government of Vatican City and more property worldwide than any other person on the planet. He has territorial dominions, cardinals, ambassadors worldwide, a detective force, legislature, jurisprudence, laws, advocates, taxes, banks, foreign treaties, ambitious plans and policy, more than any other secular Prince. But he differs from other secular leaders: his spiritual commerce goes hand in hand with his civil power, claiming infallibility and international recognition. The Pope in his own laws declares, “There is neither appeal nor recourse against a decision or decree of the Roman Pontiff.” His arrogance is not just in spiritual matters, but in secular affairs also, for he claims supreme power as much as any totalitarian ruler, “The First See is judged by no one.”24 “It is solely the right of the Roman Pontiff himself o judge…those who hold the highest civil office in a state...”25 This Pope desires partnership with Islam. His claims echo II Thessalonians 2:4, “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God”and Isaiah 14:14, "I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like most High.” Had notHoly Scripture warned us of this we would rightly be afraid. The Sovereign God remains sovereign. His purposes may be the purification of the Bride of Christ Jesus, the remnant pilgrim Church on earth. The Lord Jesus Christ did not elect the Pope as His Vicar on earth; rather He and the Father gave to the Holy Spirit of Truth to that position.
If contemporary Evangelical leaders and their disciples discount and ignore these utterly basic prophetic and historical facts, they must understand they are placing themselves outside the stream of historic biblical Christianity. They are willingly divorcing themselves from great men of the faith ¾ Wycliff, Huss, Luther, Tyndale, Calvin, Cranmer, Latimer, Ridley, Bradford, Foxe, Bunyan, Newton, Edwards, Whitefield, Wesley, Spurgeon, Ryle, and Lloyd-Jones to mention just a few. It is impossible to hold to the Gospel of Christ and simultaneously accord any legitimacy to the accommodations of the papal system. The Lord of Glory Himself will not allow such behavior to go unpunished. If Evangelicals continue to fraternize with Rome, it will mark a major, irrevocable betrayal of the Gospel testimony toward the poor deluded adherents of Romanism and leave them languishing in the claws of the devil. In other words, in simple terms of loyalty to the Lord Jesus Christ, those claiming to be believers must “Come out of her…that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”26 There is no common ground between the religion of apostasy and the Gospel of the Apostles. In spite of papal declarations of a truce and vacuous “Evangelical” alliances with the enemies of Christ, “Enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed,” Genesis 3:1, is an epitomized history of conflict which, from the moment of the Fall, has been waged between the children of light and of darkness, between those who adhere to the Gospel of grace and God’s righteousness, and those who are ranged on the side of the Devil by their love of accommodation and compromise. At this moment of history the Ecumenism of accommodation, with the Pope leading the pack, accepts Islam as a great religion. The true believer must decide where he or she stands. “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve.”27
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