The statue of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, as depicted in Daniel chapter 2, has been the object of considerable study and speculation since Daniel first understood and revealed the dream. The statue represents four kingdoms that will come upon the earth, beginning with, and including, Nebuchadnezzar’s (Daniel 2:37-40). The “head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay” (Daniel 2:32-22). These represented the current and coming world empires—Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. As Daniel explains, the fourth kingdom starts with the strength of iron, but its Feet and Toes are part iron and part clay, which is to signify that the once strong kingdom “shall be divided” but with “the strength of the iron” (Daniel 2:41). In this vision, a stone carved without hands “smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay” (Daniel 2:34) and “it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold” (Daniel 2:45). As Daniel explains, the meaning of the stone is that “in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed” (Daniel 2:44). Continue reading The Fifth Empire (part 1)
We concluded our last series on The Sacrifice Challenge with a few citations from Cyril of Jerusalem, so we thought it opportune to use him to demonstrate one of the ways Rome “finds” her doctrines in the Early Church. As we noted last week, Cyril’s Catechetical Lectures were part of a late-fourth century trend during which Rome’s novel Mass Sacrifice was invented. Catholic Answers used a few select quotes to prove Cyril’s belief in transubstantiation, but as we demonstrated, those quotes were truncated in order to isolate them from their context, and Cyril—even in the midst of his other errors—nevertheless maintained his conviction that the elements of the Lord’s Supper were only figuratively Christ’s body and blood, and remained so even after the consecration.
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This week we conclude our series on The Sacrifice Challenge. Continue reading Their Praise was their Sacrifice (part 8)
We continue this week with our analysis of Malachi 1:11 as understood by the Early Church. This series is a response to The Sacrifice Challenge, a challenge issued by Roman Catholic apologists who believe that the only possible fulfillment of Malachi 1:11 is Roman Catholicism’s sacrifice of the Mass. The Early Church, however, saw the sacrifice and incense of Malachi 1:11 to be “simple prayer from a pure conscience,” not a sacrifice of bread and wine. Continue reading Their Praise was their Sacrifice (part 7)