Those who have been reading this blog for any length of time are at least peripherally aware of the eschatology espoused here. We believe that the prophesied Antichrist of which we are warned by the apostles and prophets was manifested in the rise of Roman Catholicism and is personified in the Papacy of Rome. As we noted last week, in The Fourteenth Diocese, Daniel foresaw that the Antichrist would emerge among of the thirteen fragments of the Roman Empire, would uproot three dioceses in the process, subduing their three metropolitans, and rise up among the remaining ten, growing “more stout than his fellows” (Daniel 7:8,20-22,24-26). That is precisely what Roman Catholicism did as it claimed Rome, Alexandria and Antioch as a single See of St. Peter, aggregating for itself the three Dioceses of Italy, Egypt and Oriens. The papacy of Rome is the Little Horn of Daniel 7 and the dioceses of Diocletian’s reorganization are the other horns of the vision. That reorganization into dioceses began in 293 A.D., and was completed by the end of the fourth century. As prophesied, Roman Catholicism emerged during that time frame when the Papacy came up among the dioceses, “speaking great things” (Daniel 7:8). Continue reading It’s About the Bread→
Catholic Answers is a ministry that exists “to explain & defend the faith,” and seeks to “help good Catholics become better Catholics, bring former Catholics ‘home,’ and lead non-Catholics into the fullness of the faith.” The ministry began in 1979 when its founder, Karl Keating, grew annoyed at a local Protestant church’s efforts to evangelize the Catholics in his parish. The Protestant church had put flyers on the windshields of the parishioners’ parked cars during Mass, and the flyers were allegedly “riddled with misinformation.” Continue reading “It’s Complicated”→
One does not have to study the Roman Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation very long before finding how important Ignatius of Antioch is to its defense. As a martyr of the late first, or early second century, he is alleged to be the first witness in the sub-apostolic era for Transubstantiation and the “real presence” of Christ in the Eucharist. Fr. John Hardon, in his The History of Eucharistic Adoration lists Ignatius first after the apostle Paul in defense of the doctrine: Continue reading Eating Ignatius→
Long before Jesus turned water into wine, He turned Mary’s amniotic fluid into meconium, and her breast milk into transitional stools. Anyone who has ever changed a child’s diaper knows that the resulting odor offends the nostrils greatly. As Jesus would later instruct us, “whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly” and ends up in the toilet (Matthew 15:17), or in His case as an infant, in the diaper. Thus did Jesus’ lower gastrointestinal tract operate as it must for all men, and thus did our Lord endure the gastrocolic reflex, as all we mortals do. We therefore have no doubt that Mary’s milk passed through Him according to the course of nature, and into His diapers in a common and necessary movement. And thus did Jesus come all the way down to earth to save us, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities” (Hebrews 4:15).
As a young lady, Mary Faustina Kowalska (1905-1938) attended a dance one evening with her friends. During the dance, she experienced a vision of “Jesus,” and was no longer able to concentrate on the festivities. Not knowing what else to do, she slipped out of the dance to the local cathedral and cast herself down to worship the Eucharist, asking “Jesus” to tell her what to do. “He” did: Continue reading Wolves Within the Gate→
[This is the third installment of a three part series.]
When former Protestant, Taylor Marshall, wrote Eternal City, he sought to explain why Christianity is necessarily Roman. “The Church,” he wrote, “receives the Roman empire” from its previous custodians. But in concluding this, Marshall has mistakenly transposed two kingdoms—both of which Daniel addressed, and both of which Daniel set against the background of the rise and fall of four world empires. One kingdom is of earth and the other of heaven, and Marshall has unfortunately confused the two. Continue reading One Kingdom Too Late→
“The Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life,’ ” and “is the heart and the summit of the Church’s life,” says the Catechism of the Catholic Church (1324, 1407). And “the prayer of thanksgiving and consecration,” is “the heart and summit of the celebration” (1352). It is at the utterance of the consecration, the priest’s words, “This is My body,” and “This is the cup of My blood,” that the bread and wine are said to be “transubstantiated” into the actual body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ:
By the consecration the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is brought about. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real, and substantial manner: his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity. (1413)
Because the body, blood, soul and divinity of Christ is said to be present under the species of bread, the Roman Catholic Church has determined that it is unnecessary to administer the Lord’s Supper to the sheep under both species—bread and wine—so members of the flock typically receive the supper under the species of bread alone: “Since Christ is sacramentally present under each of the species, communion under the species of bread alone makes it possible to receive all the fruit of Eucharistic grace” (1390).
It is in this manner that Roman Catholicism “honoureth Me with their lips” (Matthew 15:8) by “this do[ing] in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:24), while at the same time “making the word of God of none effect” (Mark 7:13) by nullifying His Words which also say, “this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:25).
The Christian who must wrestle with Roman Catholic apologists (trained and untrained) will often hear them appeal to the ancient, non-scriptural, sources as proof of what the Apostles taught. We dealt with a part of that issue in a prior post about going all the way back to the written Word, instead of just going back to the first few post-apostolic generations. We acknowledge that some foundational Roman Catholic errors emerged early in the post-apostolic era, as Paul predicted they would (Acts 20:30-32), but we deny that those errors must be canonized along with God’s revelation to us in the Holy Bible. Ancient unbiblical teachings do not become more biblical with the passage of time.
One of the most fervent forms of devotion in Roman Catholicism is to the visions of Mary, commonly called “apparitions.” For many centuries, in many locations around the world, Mary is alleged to have appeared to visionaries of the Roman Catholic Church. These visionaries typically report conversations with Mary, and the apparition of Mary has many times delivered messages that have been documented through the official channels of the Roman Catholic Church. There have been many hundreds of alleged apparitions throughout history, but only a few have been approved officially by the Roman Catholic Church. These few are considered to be actual bodily appearances of Mary, and therefore “worthy of belief.” Among them are the Apparitions of Mary at Guadalupe, Mexico (1531); Paris, France (1830); La Salette, France (1846); Lourdes, France (1858); and Fatima, Portugal (1917).
The approval process for an alleged apparition can take many years, and it is rare for one to be elevated formally to the same level as those listed above. When that approval becomes official, it provides a tremendous amount of insight into the visions of Mary themselves because interviews with the visionaries are meticulously inspected, and the vision’s messages and teachings are rigorously documented through the approval process. It also provides tremendous insight into the Roman Catholic Church, because the teachings of approved apparitions are consistent with Roman Catholic teaching—otherwise they would not have been approved.