By Ministry of
A truly revealing insight in what the institute of the Roman Catholic church, truly believes and has not changed throughout the ages and will not change in the future.
Rome is an enormous institution, covering the globe and wielding both spiritual and political power over hundreds of millions people. she is thus unlike any other part of the professing church.
Rome always seems to play a prominent part in any gatherings of the World religions and has been the main force in leading, or encouraging, other churches into joining with these religions.
Rome sees herself as the inalienable head of the resulting World Church / World Religions;
In this fascinating topic of Rome's teachings and its special relationship to other churches and the Alpha Course, I hope that if the reader will find to have any problems with some parts of this study, that it will not stop them from reading the whole story. I can guarantee that this study will prove to be a rewarding one, for those that have followed the Alpha Course and those that are from the Roman Catholic faith and those that associate with the the church of Rome in any way.
In this opening chapter I will assess the position of Mary in the Roman Catholic (from now on RC) belief system, of course not everyone in the RC church holds to all the teachings of Rome, but as long as the institute holds firm to it's beliefs, you may differ as an individual, but that does not or will ever change where the institute stands for, it is therefore that I will address the institute rather than the individual believer; however it is my belief that many followers of Rome do not know the danger Rome holds and imposes on its inner circle of power.
The Following instructions about Mary represents firm dogma- i.e. they must be accepted by everyone wishing to be a member of the RC Church - meaning that any treatment of Rome would be very incomplete without a look at Mary. Again, there may be aspects of Rome's teachings on the subject of Mary of which the reader is not currently aware, so please bear with me with this chapter before we move on to other things.
Content of the teachings of Rome
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 61-62:
The first point to note is that Rome refers to Mary as the "Mother of God" and the "perpetual Virgin". Catholicism teaches that Mary was "Immaculately conceived" (i.e. born free from sin) so that she was not subject to death: She is acknowledged and honored as being truly the Mother of God....[Vatican II]; "[Mary is] ....the mother of God, ever Virgin [Vatican II].
So strongly does Rome maintain these beliefs that any person not holding to them will, she claims, "incur the wrath of Almighty God". Consider the following copper-bottomed statement from her:
Unfortunately, we can find no unambiguous support for these teachings in the Bible. Although Mary gave birth to Jesus Christ when He was on the Earth it is not possible for her to have been the "Mother of God", since Father, Son and Holy Spirit all existed before her:
"Mary also bore other children and so she was not a perpetual virgin: And he [Josef] knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son". (Matth. 1:25). For some details of her other offspring, see Mark 6:3 and Mark 15:40. (Any readers who feels that it is inappropriate to investigate Rome's teaching on Mary should perhaps consider that John Paul II confirms his belief in all of Rome's Marian dogma's.
Although Mary was righteous and found favor in God's sight, she, like us all was still in need of a Savior: "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men for all have sinned (Rom 5:12, see also Rom 3:9-12, 19-20,23)" And Mary said, my soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior....(Luke 1:46-47).As additional proof of this, Mary was not exempt from making the required sin offerings after Christ birth (Luke 2:22-24, Lev 12:2-8).
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 62-63:
Scripture not withstanding Rome goes further and claims that Christ Jesus was not our sole Redeemer, but that Mary is actually "co-redemptrix" with Him:
Yes Mary was present at Christ's crucifixion. But if we start going down the road described above, then we should have to say that the malefactor on the cross nest to Jesus was also a co-redeemer, due to his active participation in the crucifixion scene. But scripture says no such thing about Mary or anyone else. The Lord Jesus Christ alone was beaten, lashed and crucified. He alone is sinless, and therefore He alone is able to save.
The word redeemer can be found eighteen times in the Bible. In each case the surrounding text confirms that there is only one redeemer. The plural version of the word never occurs.
Luke 1:42-48 shows that God the Father permits Mary to be called blessed for all generations, because He chose her to bear the Lord Jesus Christ. She was a faithful and godly Israelite woman, and hers was a unique role, but other woman in the Scripture are also called blessed (e.g. in Gen. 24:60; Judges 5:24 and Ruth 3:10)
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 63-64:
Following on from the teaching that Mary is co-redemptrix, Rome insists that she is also the mediator between us and her Son, the Lord Jesus - and as such is to receive the prayers of the faithful.
But only a High Priest - a male - can intercede with God on our behalf. The Bible just mentions one mediator between the Father and us: 1John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. See also Rom 8:34; Heb. 7:25-26. There is no mention in the Scripture of our needing to reach the Lord Jesus through prayers to Mary.
How dishonoring it is to Christ to teach that He is lacking in pity and compassion for His people, and that He must be persuaded to that end by His mother! When He was on earth it was never necessary for anyone to persuade Him to be compassionate. Rather when He saw the blind and the lame, the afflicted and hungry, He was moved with compassion for them and lifted them out of their distress.
He had immediate mercy on the wicked but penitent thief on the cross, and there was no need for intercession by Mary, although she was there present. His love for us is as great as when He was on earth; His heart is as tender; and we need no intermediary, neither His mother after the flesh, nor any saint or angel, to entreat Him on our behalf.
Eph 2:18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father
For us to pray to anyone but God is wrong (Deutr. 18:10-12, Matth. 6:6, Luke 11:2) If people were reaching the true Mary, then she would admonish them for disobeying God. Since this is not happening, who are the people really contacting? And what of the increasingly frequent "Marian Apparitions" occurring around the world? Despite there being no examples of Marian apparitions in the Bible, nor any scriptures prophesying that May would reappear, growing numbers of Catholics believe that the apparitions are images of the true Mary. But the messages being given by this "angel of light" reveal her true identity:
These teachings are from Babylon (seat of the occult). Indeed the Babylonians too worshipped a woman whose image reappeared after her demise. An example of this is referred to in Acts 19:35 The enemy is easy capable of producing such lying signs and wonders (2Cor. 11:14-15) and Paul warned us to be on our guard against this (Gal. 1:8).
Note, that a large number of people believe in the errors we have cited above. But any reader who imagines that "a billion people all over the world can't all be wrong" , consider this,... the pattern throughout Scripture where it was indeed the majority who were usually wrong. It was often just a tiny remnant that overcame Satan's temptations and deceptions and remained true to God's Word. Among the large number of examples we could list: Only two people (out of the estimated two million escapees from Egypt) made it to the Promised Land, because the rest did not maintain a living faith in the God of Israel; a very small proportion of the people in Elijah's day stayed true to the Lord; and only an infinitesimal fraction of the exiles from Israel ever returned.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 66-67:
One of the ways in which Catholics believe they can pray to Mary is by recitation of the "Hail Mary" (or Ave Maria in Latin). The Hail Mary is probably the most popular prayer known by Catholics outside the Mass. It forms part of the rosary. . . It forms part of the rosary. . . In the rosary it serves as a mantra, a repetitive sequence of words, thoughts and rhythms. . .
This contradicts the Lord's express command to us: " But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do:... Be not ye therefore Like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask Him.
Incidentally, the " Holy Rosary" (used also by Moslems and others, and composed of a string of beads each of which is "counted off" as the relevant prayer is recited) did not originate with Rome. It is of a pagan origin, having been used for millennia in the religions of Buddhism and Hinduism.
A Rosary is also to be seen around the neck of the Ephesian goddess Diana ( also known as "the mother of the gods"), the worship of whom Paul thoroughly denounced in Acts:19-28.
In light of all this, that is known by the leaders of all the religions that practice the use of the "rosary", the Roman Catholic church continues to practice the rosary, and hereby we can see that one of the dangers importing pagan practices into the church is, that these pagan faiths, which continue to be practiced, can with time, appear to be "church-like" and "on the right track" to Christians, after they have adopted those practices and think them to be of Christian origin.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 68-72:
Although Mary was respected by the people of her day, Christ Jesus took every opportunity to refute the idea that she was to be "adored", emphasizing instead that all who hear and obey the Lord God are blessed:
From the scripture below we can see that there were actually some occasions when Mary was obstructing Jesus ministry, for which He needed to reprove her:
In fact Jesus. while naturally respectful towards Mary, did not hesitate to correct her wrong thinking concerning His actions - even as a child of twelve: "His mother said unto Him, Son, why hast Thou thus dealt with us? , , , And He said. . . How is it that ye sought Me? Wist [knew] ye not that I must be about My Father's business?".(Luke 2:48b-49)." Despite all of this, Rome adores her as Queen". . . She was exalted by the Lord as Queen of all . . .[Vatican II].
There are two passages in Scripture in which reference is made to "veneration to", a "Queen of Heaven" - and such behavior is shown to be an abomination to the Lord:
Note! Please read the whole passage (Jeremiah 44:15-27) about Israel rebelling against the Lord by serving the "Queen of Heaven" , whereby the Lord's anger was kindled against the people of Israel and the Lord planned to destroy them to the last one that were serving other gods.
The "Queen of heaven" is the Babylonian goddess, Semiramis ) also known as Ishtar or Easter etc in different countries, plus Astarte - the plural of which is Ashtaroth) who, along with her husband Nimrod (Bel or Baal - plural Baalim) and her child Tammuz, formed the false trinity worshipped by Israel during times of apostasy.
Note! The True Trinity of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost have various titles (e.g. Jehovah, Adonai, Tree of Life, Lamb of God, Comforter, Spirit of truth etc) and are described in the Scriptures in various ways and forms (e.g. as a Judge, a King, a Shepherd, a High Priest, a burning bush, an angel, a voice from heaven, a smoking furnace and so on) In a similar way, the members of the false trinity were each given various names and 'identities'. When we discover these names and characters. a number of seemingly impenetrable scriptures referring to these 'gods' suddenly make sense
The original name of the son in the false Babylonian trinity was Tammuz. Like Christ, Tammuz died young. hence:
(Incidentally, the annual forty days of bewailing, [a form of self-punishment] for the Babylonian god Tammuz, has been adopted into the church, through Rome, and renamed " Lent '')
Rome teaches that Mary " has been appointed by God to be the Queen of heaven and earth [Pius IX]. But according to God's own Word, the Queen of heaven is an "Idol" and an '' abomination''. It is pertinent to note that the Babylonian goddess, Semiramis, was also called " the Virgin Mother and the Mother of the gods". The "Mary" that Rome worships is not the Mary of the Bible, but the goddess of Babylon. ( This would explain why most images of "Mary" look nothing like the face of a Jewess).
Rome claims that the 'type' of worship given to Mar is different from the 'type' of that God should receive. The Bible, however, does not make a distinction. Any type of worship to anyone other than God is a terrible act in the eyes of our wonderful, holy, jealous Lord (Exodus 20:1-5, Matt. 4:10). In practice, Mary holds the central place in the hearts of many Catholics regardless.
What the scriptures say about Mary is
more than sufficient to know,
It is also apparent that, if Mary is meant to be so central to the Christian Faith then this fact would be made very plain in the Bible - instead of her receiving just a few brief mentions. When this observation is put to Catholics, some suggest that the discrepancy is due to parts of the Bible going missing over the years. Patently this is not so. If the Lord God created the scriptures would He not ensure their preservation? Indeed He has promised to do so:
While Mary receives special 'veneration', Rome also encourages the revering of other historical 'saints' and the observance by 'Saint days'. But when Scripture refers to 'saints' it means every one of the Lord's true followers, not just a few deceased ones: "Unto the church of God. . .to them that are sanctified [i.e. made saintly] in Christ Jesus, called to be saints. . ." (1Cor. 1:2). The epistles are addressed to living saints, not dead ones.
Although we should emulate the faithful men and woman of God from past centuries, Rome's reverence goes well beyond that - into idolatry. Astonishingly, many of Rome's saints can be traced back to pagan heroes and heathen 'gods' and have been done to draw pagans into the Roman Catholic Church, it now means that believers are honoring idols.
(Besides men should be drawn into the
Church by its dissimilarity to the world, not by its similarity. Rom.
12:2 says "Be ye not conformed to this world". Far from encouraging us
to bring pagan things in the church. The Lord blessed those who purge all
such things out
Charles Chiniquy, a Catholic priest for many years, reveals the practices of that vast institution in his famous book Fifty Years in the Church of Rome. He had this to say of Rome's saints and the images that have been made of them.
Though Rome works hard to downplay the nature of her practices regarding statues of Mary and the other departed 'saints', Scripture is very clear:
Another 'saint' is peculiarly relevant to this chapter. His name was Maximilian Kolbe and, in a World War II concentration camp, he sacrificed his life for a man he didn't know. Unfortunately there is an rather important fact about Kolbe that would be known by almost all of his Catholic hearers - but completely unknown by virtually all Protestants. . .
The reason Kolbe was made into a Roman 'saint' was not primarily because he died in an other man's place; others have done the same. His 'sainthood' was conferred because he was possibly the most ardent Mariolator (Mary worshipper) in Roman history. He: formed the "Militia of Mary Immaculate" with the aim of "bringing all men to love Mary Immaculate", built a city in Poland called "the City of the Immaculate" for the sole purpose of promoting Mariolatry; set up a similar base in Japan for the same purpose; published monthly reviews and daily newspapers extolling Mariolatry; and created a seminary to "prepare priests for. . .every task in the name of the Immaculate and with her help". He believed Mary is the "spouse of the Holy Trinity" and that she, not Christ, will "crush the serpent's head". He even took the name 'Mary' as his middle name. He is today often known as "Apostle of Mary".
So what lay behind his sacrifice in WWII? Was it love for a fellow Pole in severe trouble? Kolbe himself admitted that everything he did was actually for the sake of Mary and to help "spread her cult". "He regarded himself as no more than an instrument of her will". And she asked him to be a martyr.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 76:
"Completely Yours"; Perhaps more so than any previous Roman Poe, John Paul II dedicated his pontification to Mary. His often repeated prayer "totus tuus Maria" , means I am completely yours Mary. It was also his practice to consecrate each place visited to the 'Blessed Virgin', In 1983, at Fatima, he consecrated the world to the 'Immaculate heart of Mary'. On the 8th of October 2000 he also consecrated the 'humanity of the New Millennium' to her. As we have seen, though, this 'Mary' is not the mother of Christ but a Babylonian 'goddess'. so, to whom did John Paul II actually 'consecrate' the world?. . .
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 77:
Some of the titles claimed by the Roman Pope are 'the Vicar of Christ upon earth', 'Supreme Head', 'Sovereign Pontiff', and 'His Holiness'. These are all very grand titles, suggestive of a mighty and magnificent office - and that is indeed what we find in papal statements regarding the extent of Papal power
Pope Boniface VIII asserted that "Every human creature is subject to the Roman Pontiff,- this we declare, say, declare, define and pronounce to be altogether necessary to salvation":, and Pope Innocent III says "Every cleric must obey the Pope, even if what he commands is evil; for no-one may judge the Pope". Rome's assertions go further still:
The Pope of Rome would have tremendous rule and control over anyone who was to move from the Alpha Course into the Roman Catholic system of beliefs.
So how do these 'papal' claims stand up to examination by the light of God's Word? And what are the implications?
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 77-80:
It would probably be helpful to start this topic by examining Matthew 16:15-19 upon which the whole papal position depends, and then move on to examine what God's Word says about some of the other papal titles;
Rome claims that, by saying to Peter: "upon this rock I will build my church", the Lord Jesus made him both the head of the Church and its foundation. Furthermore, Catholicism teaches that Rome later became Peter's bishopric, so it follows that all subsequent bishops of Rome inherited this commission. According to The Catholic Encyclopedia;
Thus does Rome insist that Peter is the 'rock' on which Christ's church will be built. However, even a cursory study of this passage shows that Rome's claims are problematic:
Firstly, Christ doesn't say "upon YOU I will build my Church", so verse 18 is not as conclusive as Rome would wish. When Christ talks of "this rock", He is referring to "it" of the previous verse where He says "flesh and blood hath not revealed it". What is this :it:? It is that He, the "Son of man", the man who was soon to be crucified, to die, and to rise again, is (as Peter had just testified) "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God". It is this central fact that was going to be the basic truth, the "rock", on which Christ's church was going to be build. This is a truth that God reveals to all believers (1John 5:20) - Peter was merely rewarded with a change of name that reflected the truth he had just uttered.
The previous point is heavily reinforced when we look at the word "rock" as it appears in Scripture. The word translated 'Peter' is 'Petros' (masculine) in Greek , meaning 'pebble' or 'stone'; whole the word translated 'rock' is 'petra' (feminine). Though the two sound similar, their meanings are quite different. Rome tries to argue the Aramaic word is the same in both instances. But if that is the case, why is the same Greek word not used in both instances in the Bible? Rome is adamant that the Aramaic word for "Peter" (i.e. "Cephas") means "Rock", but God has already dealt with this misconception in John 1:42...
The Lord is making a play on words, as often happens in scripture. He was not identifying, but contrasting, Peter with the immovable Rock - i.e. Himself. As the wise man built his house upon the solid rock, not the shifting sand of the foolish man (Matt. 7:24-27), so it would be folly to build the Christian Church on a pebble which is movable and easy overturned - just as, in fact, Peter unfortunately proved to be so soon after this event (see Matt. 16:21-23). The Word of God makes it abundantly clear that Christ is the rock; "For who is God save the LORD? or who is a rock save our God? Psalm 18:31.
Note ! The Hebrew name for "Jesus" is "Yeshua" meaning "salvation". There are numerous places in Scripture that speak of this "Rock of salvation" (i.e. Psalm 89:26; Psalm 95:1; and Isaiah 17:10, including:
While the true Church is "built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets" (i.e. the Bible), Peter was just one of many involved. The chief corner stone of the Church, and the foundation for the life of each believer, is the Lord Jesus Christ alone: "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1Cor. 3:11)
In fact, in his epistle, Peter himself reiterates this truth when he quotes God the Father proclaiming: "Behold. I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious; and he that believeth in Him shall not be confounded (Peter 2:6)
The wonderful revelation that Jesus is "the Christ, the Son of the living God" was not limited to Peter alone, but is given by God's Holy Spirit to every person who believes in the Lord Jesus:
Also interesting is the following verse 1John 5:21 "Little children, keep yourselves from idols", And this is precisely what Roman Catholics are being forced to make of their Pope.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 81-82:
So how are we to understand Christ's statement to Peter that "I will give unto thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven" (Matthew 16:19)? Well? what are the keys, and are they only ever in the possession of one man? Are they, as Rome claims, the keys of "legislative and judicial authority"?
But the keys do not necessarily mean authority; they are simply a means of access. (If a parent gives a child a key to the front door, it does not mean the parent is giving the child ruler ship over the house.) If we look up "key" in Scripture, we find that the "keys" in view are the truths about God and His Kingdom. Luke 11:52 explains: "Woe unto to you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered." So Christ is promising to teach Peter the knowledge required for Peter to be able to "enter in" to the Kingdom of Heaven. Below is the true background to Rome's interpretation.
long before the Christian era began, the person who held the highest place in the pagan priesthood had the role of explaining the Mysteries to the initiated. In the Babylonian language (Chaldea), the title of this person was "Peter" meaning "the interpreter". He was the Grand Interpreter, which when translated, is "Peter-Roma". Because if his role in unlocking the Mysteries, he was decorated with two keys...
Thus we already have a pagan "Peter" with keys (which explains why many pagan counties knew of the keys of "Peter-Roma" from antiquity). By renaming Simon, Christ was mocking this pagan religion and showing that anyone who comes to Christ in truth can have the keys of knowledge:
Note that Peter himself confirms this, especially in his second epistle verses (2Peter 1:2-8)
Like the Babylonian god Janus, the Roman Pope is said to be the 'god of the hinge' who can open and close Heaven. (It is also worthy of note that the word 'Cardinal' means 'hinge'.) If we compare Isaiah 22:22 with Revelation 3:7 we see that it is Christ who is the way and Christ who is the door, not some mortal man. It is, therefore, Christ who holds the keys to Heaven.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide"; page 82-83:
So what about the final element of Matthew 16:19, where the Lord says "whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven"? Rome is forced to admit that this does not prove that Peter was given special powers because, just two chapters later, Christ makes the identical promise to all His other disciples (Matthew 18:18) and John 20:23)
Rome believes, the 'power of the keys' or the 'power to bind and loose' is actually the power to bind and loose souls in Heaven, although this is not stated in these verses. When considering this verse we need to remember that we cannot take God's place or tell Him what to do (Daniel 4:35; Psalm 24:1 etc) and that all Bible verses must be held in tension with all others-including ones like the following:
So what does the 'binding' passage mean? Plainly we need to look a little deeper. Careful observers will note that the Lord does not say the entity which is bound or loosed on earth "shall consequently be" bound or loosed in Heaven and, according to the Greek scholars, the relevant words are in the passive voice of the future perfect tense, so any "binding or loosing" done by the apostles on earth could only be declaratory of what already been bound or loosed in Heaven.
Christ immediately preceding words about the "keys" of Heaven, and the preceding three verses of Matthew 18 occurrence above (where a believer adamantly refuses to repent for a trespass, and must therefore be expelled from the Church), both strongly suggest another meaning for the "binding" passage altogether...
That is, if we are adhering to God's instructions then we need not hesitate to carry out His ordinances - typically in relation to church discipline - physically, since such discipline "shall be" the case spiritually already. In the example above, God had already 'bound' the unrepentant trespasser's spirit from His presence, so believers could confidently do likewise on earth.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide" page 83-84:
Rome points to Peter's ministry as being unique and therefore indicative of a chief, or Pope-like, place within the church. While Peter had a distinguished place among the apostles, so did others. Besides, he and they completed their work and died. As with so many Roman Catholic terms, we won't find the phrase "Apostolic Succession" in Scripture.
Although there can still be apostles (in the sense of 'messengers' of God around today), we are taught there were only twelve of the specially equipped and specially commissioned apostles who finished the Bible and founded the Church (Ephesians 2:20) That there are only twelve is proved by the fact that the twelve foundation stones of the "heavenly Jerusalem" are named after them (Revelations 21:14). In other words, even if one insists that Peter was a 'special' foundation stone, this is still a very long way from proving there is a Peter-like office today - and further yet from proving that the Bishop of Rome is the person meant to fulfill any such role.
But there are serious problems with the idea that Peter was a Pope. Finally, he was married (Matt 8:14) despite Rom's prohibition, made law in 386 AD, of this stat for her priests and Popes.
(Indeed we are warned in 1Timothy 4:1-3 that "Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats" - both of which Rome does - are indicative of "departure from the faith" and "giving heed to seducing spirits". It does not take much imagination to recognize the array of dreadful sins that are encouraged by 'forbidding to marry' - especially forbidding someone in a position of authority, trust and power! Observers therefore consider it a shame that people like Nicky Gumbel, "when describing singleness as "very high calling indeed").
There is no evidence that Peter was ever a Bishop of Rome - indeed there is no credible evidence that Peter even visited Rome.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide" page 84
We turn now to look at just a few of the Roman Pope's other titles to see whether they are corroborated by the Word of God;
Scripture states that there is only one head of the Church, the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no hint anywhere of the necessity for the Church to have an earthly or 'visible' head. (If the Pope of Rome really held such a powerful spiritual position, why does he need an earthly army of body - guards? See Psalm 118:6 If the Pope is part of the Church then he is part of the body of Christ, and he is subject to Christ in exactly the same way that every other member of the body is. (See 1Corintians 12:12-27)
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide" page 85-86:
The word 'pope' derives from the 'papa' meaning 'Father', so we should consider the following 'problem passage':
Whatever arguments people employ to justify ignoring this verse, Christ's words stand. He categorically commanded us not to look to any man as a spiritual Father but God Himself. Yet Rome does just this. Even if there were no other such passages, the above is sufficient clear not to be misunderstood. But scriptures like Matthew 6:9, Romans 1:7, 1Thessalonians 3:13, are similar unequivocal. Rome's rejection of this command to call no-one on earth 'father' in this religious sense is simply disobedience to the Lord God. It is no accident that, while Rome is happy to dedicate churches to Mar and various saints, God the Father is rarely given such an honor.
Likewise, consider this assertion of the 'Catholic Truth Society': "The Pope is the spiritual Father of all Christians", and that of Pope Gregory VII: "Does anyone doubt that the priests of Christ are to be considered as fathers and masters of kings and princes and of all believers?". We are very definitely told in Matthew 23:10-12 that we have only one spiritual Master, the Lord Jesus Christ: "Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ" Matthew 23:8, see also John 13:13-14.
the Lord Jesus Christ is God: "...and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us" (Matthew 1:23b). See also John 1:1 and John 10:30. Rome calls their Pope 'Vicar of Christ' which means 'a substitute for ' or 'in place of' Christ. Truly, Roman Catholics have allowed Christ to be replaced by mere man. Indeed, when they use the term 'Lord' they seldom referring to the Lord Jesus, but to their Pope.
The only place in Scripture where anyone is said to be 'in the place of God' is in reference to the anti Christ;
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide" page 86-88:
Pontiff means 'bridge' or 'priest'. Other titles of this kind claimed by the Roman Pope are 'Sovereign Pontiff' meaning 'kingly priest' and 'Summus Pontifex' or Pontifex Maximus' meaning 'supreme' or 'high priest'
It is an error running throughout Roman Catholicism that substantial elements of the symbolic (and / or prophetic) religious and political system which God ordained for Israel as recorded in the Old Testament still apply to His People in the post-resurrection Body of believers. The Word of God makes clear that the ceremonial law and these physical trappings were a prefigure or "shadow" of heavenly things (Hebrew 8:5) and that they pointed to Christ (e.g. Romans 5:14; Hebrew 9:9-12; Hebrew 10:1). Jesus Christ was the "Lamb" of God who was sacrificed on the "altar" of the Earth and is our "High Priest":
As we have seen that the position of High Priest is already filled by our glorious , eternal Savior. God's People no longer need a mortal High Priest.
As the Pope also is called Sovereign Pontiff and, in keeping with this title, wears the papal tiara (a jewel-encrusted triple crown) at various Catholic ceremonies. But the Early Church knew , since Christ's death, it was wrong to perpetuate the physical pattern given to Israel; these things don't appear at all under the "better" New Covenant. Indeed, it is only Christ who can hold these two great offices of High Priest and King and it would be to deny Christ to claim that there is another ruler over the Kingdom of God. It is Christ, the Son of King David, who is our promised King:
In contrast to the true Church, whose head is Christ Himself, the false Babylonian church has always had a mortal man 'at the top' ever since Nimrod's day. Amazingly, one of the titles of this position in the false church was "Pontifex Maximus" - precisely the title which the Pope claims for himself and which was taken from the Roman Emperors who preceded Constantine:
It is interesting to note that, just as the Pontiff today is happy to indulge any religion provided it acknowledges him as its head, so each Roman Emperor was happy to indulge any religion in his day that accepted him as head. In both cases it denies Christ His rightful position. It can be seen, the, that Rome's claims above are completely mistaken, contradicting the explicit teachings (and warnings) of the Word of God.
From; Alpha - "the
un official guide" page 88:
There is a tiny minority within the Roman Institution who yet claim that the Pope is just a figurehead, emphasizing that he is also called Cerves servorum Dei (i.e. servant of the servants of God). However that is certainly not consistent with the teachings given by Tome throughout her history, nor does it reflect the way the Pope or the Roman Church actually acts. And however much recent Popes may appear to have been more open to compromise over the issue than their predecessors, the following is quite plain:
From; Alpha - "the un official guide" page 90:
To conclude this study, let us consider the following from Hislop's incomparable study on the Roman Church:
How dangerous is it to put a man at the head, rather than our truly infallible Mediator, Shepherd and King the Lord Jesus Christ. Men can be deceived. And, if we build a man-made church hierarchy, all Satan needs to do is take the leaders into error and the entirety of the obedient church would follow. Suffice it to say that the rock on which Roman Catholicism is built is in the form of sand. As Deuteronomy 32:31 puts it, "their rock is not as our rock".