On Sunday, June 8, the Vatican, under the leadership of Pope Francis, led the first ever Jewish and Islamic prayers for resolution of the Israel-Palestine Conflict. This is an unprecedented event, yet not one that should take us by surprise. What does surprise me is that this event happened so quickly after the unity government that was formed with Hamas and Fatah, the two rival Palestinian groups. Hamas, as most people know, still has the destruction of Israel in its charter and is a major sponsor of terror. President Shimon Peres, representing Israel, and Mahmoud Abbas, representing the “Palestinians”, met with the Pope in the Vatican where Islamic prayers and readings from the Quran were heard at the Vatican.
For a number of years I have had a theological interpretation of Rev 17 and 18 that I have taught in my congregation. We don’t declare it as a “doctrine” that we have espoused, but I believe it is being proven by the very events that are unfolding before our eyes. I also believe that this event that happened at the Vatican that Sunday is part of this scenario.
So let me state my theological premise and let’s see if it lines up with events transpiring today. In the end only time will tell. You need to read these passage yourself to get the full picture.
In Rev 17 we see that the Woman, “Babylon, the great mother of harlots and of the abominations of the Earth”, is sitting on the scarlet beast that carries her. The Woman is clothed in purple and scarlet adorned with gold, precious stones, pearls, and she holds a gold cup full of abominations, unclean things and she is immoral. She is drunk with the blood of the Saints. She is also a great city.
The Beast once was, and is not, and will come. The Woman also sits on seven mountains. The Beast gives authority to 10 kings for one hour; they in turn give their power and authority back to the beast. Together they will attempt to make war against the Lamb,
The beast and the ten kings will turn on the harlot and kill her. In Rev 18 the scene changes radically as the Kings of the earth who committed acts of immorality with her will weep and mourn over her when they see her burn. In her was found the blood of the prophets and of the saints and all who have been slain on the earth.
In Rev 20 we again see the beast, and he is the one responsible for beheading those who do not take his mark or worship him.
There are a number of documents in the Catholic Church’s history that are prominent, but the Second Vatican documents supposedly changed the image of the Catholic Church and were supposed to bring it into modern times. Two of the papers, called Lumen Gentium and Nostra Aetate, clearly state the Catholic Church’s stance on their relationship with Islam.
DOGMATIC CONSTITUTION ON THE CHURCH
SOLEMNLY PROMULGATED BY HIS HOLINESS
POPE PAUL VI
ON NOVEMBER 21, 1964
Chapter 2. “But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind. Nor is God far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is He who gives to all men life and breath and all things,(127) and as the Savior wills that all men be saved.(128) Those also can attain to salvation who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do His will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience.(19*) Nor does Divine Providence deny the helps necessary for salvation to those who, without blame on their part, have not yet arrived at an explicit knowledge of God and with His grace strive to live a good life. Whatever good or truth is found amongst them is looked upon by the Church as a preparation for the Gospel.(20*) She knows that it is given by Him who enlightens all men so that they may finally have life. But often men, deceived by the Evil One, have become vain in their reasonings and have exchanged the truth of God for a lie, serving the creature rather than the Creator.(129) Or some there are who, living and dying in this world without God, are exposed to final despair. Wherefore to promote the glory of God and procure the salvation of all of these, and mindful of the command of the Lord, "Preach the Gospel to every creature",(130) the Church fosters the missions with care and attention.” The modern Catholic Church has defined her relations to non-Christian religions in a document entitled Nostra Aetate. The section on Islam begins thus:
THE RELATION OF THE CHURCH TO NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS
PROCLAIMED BY HIS HOLINESS
POPE PAUL VI
ON OCTOBER 28, 1965
“3. The Church regards with esteem also the Muslims. They adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself; merciful and all-powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth,(5) who has spoken to men; they take pains to submit wholeheartedly to even His inscrutable decrees, just as Abraham, with whom the faith of Islam takes pleasure in linking itself, submitted to God. Though they do not acknowledge Jesus as God, they revere Him as a prophet. They also honor Mary, His virgin Mother; at times they even call on her with devotion. In addition, they await the Day of Judgment when God will render their desserts to all those who have been raised up from the dead. Finally, they value the moral life and worship God especially through prayer, almsgiving and fasting.
Since in the course of centuries not a few quarrels and hostilities have arisen between Christians and Muslims, this sacred synod urges all to forget the past and to work sincerely for mutual understanding, and to preserve, as well as to promote, together for the benefit of all mankind social justice and moral welfare, as well as peace and freedom.”
I could be reading into these documents, but I do not think so based on the actions of the Catholic Church in the past and today. It does seem to me that Catholicism in these documents is embracing Islam as a religion that believes in the same god that they believe in. To quote again “They adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself; merciful and all-powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth” Unless they have misstated it is pretty clear to me that the Catholic Church is stating that Islam adores the same god that they do. They have clearly described his characteristics of eternality, self-subsistence, mercy, power, the one who created all things. All of these traits are also spoken of in the Scripture of YHVH. What other explanation could be given other than the fact that they have made the Lord so generic that He ends up becoming a one-size-fits-all deity? As long as you call Him “God”, they assume that it’s all the same.
But I am afraid that Scripturally it is not so. His name is not Allah. He gave His name to Moses in Exodus 3:
13Then Moses said to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?” 14God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” 15God, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations.
His name is I Am. In Hebrew simplified it is YHVH, usually pronounced Yehovah or Yahweh. It means I am, I exist. It is a verb that becomes a proper noun. His name is a memorial forever. He never changed it to Allah. He never gave permission to call Him anything else. He also gave Himself many titles and they describe His attributes. Not one of them is Allah. He gave His Word to Moses and the prophets not to Mohamed.
1 YHVH, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, 2in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. 3And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. He gave His final word to Yeshua the Messiah, not Mohammed. So how can the Catholic Church make the statements they do in these two documents mentioned above? Simple – they are forming an unholy alliance with Islam just as the Harlot did with the Beast. But we see it won’t last because in the end Islam will do what it always does, devour anyone or anything that gets in its way. Who is guiltier of the blood of the saints than the Catholic Church? It is estimated that the Catholic Church throughout their history has killed over 50 million people. Who is guiltier of harlotry with the child molestations that have gone on in our lifetime? What about the child abuse that happened in times past when there was no reporting? "From the birth of Popery in 606 to the present time, it is estimated by careful and credible historians, that more than fifty million of the human family have been slaughtered for the crime of heresy by popish persecutors, an average of more than forty thousand religious murders for every year of the existence of popery."
-- "History of Romanism," pp. 541, 542. New York: 1871.
Commenting on this quote, a fundamental Baptist web site says the following:
For example, it has been estimated by careful and reputed historians of the Catholic Inquisition that 50 million people were slaughtered for the crime of "heresy" by Roman persecutors between the A.D. 606 and the middle of the 19th century.
This is the number cited by John Dowling, who published the classic, "History of Romanism" in 1847 (book VIII, chapter 1, footnote 1).
Even if this number is exaggerated by 50% we are still speaking of an astronomical figure. What we see in Rev 17 and 18 is an unholy alliance of the Harlot of Rome, who sits on seven hills, and the beast, who beheads anyone who does not swear allegiance to him. I would ask who is it that beheads people? Any guesses? We know who sits on the city built on seven Hills.
The Catholic Encyclopedia states: "It is within the city of Rome, called the city of seven hills, that the entire area of Vatican State proper is now confined." The Catholic Encyclopedia (Thomas Nelson, 1976), s.v. "Rome." According to the Koran concerning beheading it says…
Book of Al-Anfal, verse 12 ( 8:12) - “I (Allah) will instill terror into the hearts of the unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off.”
A lesser punishment stated by the Koran is…
Book of Al-Maeda, verse 33 (5:33) -“The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion; or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides; or exile from the land. That is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter;”
I would like to ask the Catholic leadership just one question: How does Islamic teaching compare to what Yeshua taught? How do the actions of the Catholic Church compare as well? Can we truly say they believe in the same Lord I believe in? Me thinkest not!
Yeshua said in Mark 6…
27“But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29“Whoever hits you on the cheek, offer him the other also; and whoever takes away your coat, do not withhold your shirt from him either. 30“Give to everyone who asks of you, and whoever takes away what is yours, do not demand it back. 31“Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. 32“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33“If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34“If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. 35“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. 36“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
Does anyone see any heads rolling here in these statements?
So, if I have it right, the Catholic Church and Islam are two of the most violent religious systems on the earth. The Pope and the Second Vatican Documents say they believe in the same god. Pope Francis is so convinced of this that he called for prayer invoking the god of Islam for peace at his “holy” headquarters. This is the same god that still calls for the beheading of infidels. The Catholic Church is responsible for the death of countless millions, and now they want to partner with Islam in prayer for peace, while Israel fights for its very survival against enemies on every side of its boarders. What totally makes things worse is that Shimon Peres the president of Israel participated in this. Where is the discernment or wisdom in this scenario?
As an aside, last week the “Palestinian” unity government of Fatah and Hamas kidnapped 3 Israeli youth who attend a yeshiva in the Eztion Bloc of Jewish communities in Judea This happened right on the heels of the “Prayer Summit”. The only peace Islam wants is a piece of our hides.
In Islam there is a little known doctrine called a Hudna, the definition of a Hudna simply is, "What is being touted as a 'cease-fire' is something called a 'hudna.' A hudna [also known as a hudibiyya or khudaibiya] is a tactical cease-fire that allows Muslims to rebuild their terrorist infrastructure in order to be more effective when the "cease-fire" is called off." -- "Cease-fire?" by Shira A. Drissman
[Arafat] likened the Oslo accords, once again, to the 10-year truce made by the prophet Muhammad in A.D. 628 with the Arabian tribe of Quraysh.
The Islamic forces used the peace to regroup and become stronger over a couple of years then defeated the Quraysh tribe. This parallel re-emphasized that Arafat saw Oslo, not as a pledge to work for a permanent reconciliation between Arabs and Israelis, but as a temporary and tactical maneuver. Speech by Yasser Arafat, Johannesburg:
"This agreement, I am not considering it more than the agreement which had been signed between our Prophet Muhammad and Quraish, and you remember the Caliph Omar had refused this agreement and considered it "Sulha Dania" [a despicable truce]. But Muhammad had accepted it and we are accepting now this [Oslo] peace”
What I am seeing in Rev 17 and 18 is that Islam, “the Beast”, makes a Hudna with the “Harlot”, the Catholic Church, until he is powerful enough to devour her. The treaty in this case is not a secession of hostilities from battle, but a temporary allegiance with Catholicism. It is also a theological cease-fire between the exclusive claims of Islam and Catholicism. The Harlot rides the Beast. The Beast uses the prominence of the harlot to gain total acceptance, giving the impression that they are true friends. The Catholic Church thinks that they are leading the way as instruments of peace having joint prayer and accepting them as a partner in peace; but because they are also complicit in the same violent behavior, they are fooling themselves. There will come a time when Islam will gain the prominence it feels it needs to conquer, and they will get tired of this Hudna. Finally, they will no longer need Catholicism to dupe the world into believing they are a peace-loving religion. Their true agenda will be revealed as clear as day: world domination or death.
I understand very clearly that to some this will be very hard to swallow. It is the bitter pill that won’t go down. But all I am asking is for you to be open to the facts of history. Be willing to see the fruit of these religious systems. Islam has always been a religion of violence. This is how they grew because Mohamed promised the spoils of war to all who would follow his new god. Catholicism also conquered the world in the same way and is a religion that is guilty of more death over the centuries than possibly any other religious system. So be careful of the cup you drink from as we draw closer to the Lord’s return. Because the Harlot’s gold cup is full of abominations, unclean things and she is immoral. She is drunk with the blood of the Saints. The stage is being set for all these things to take place, and we must be watchful and not faint.