I’m really concerned because of charges by fundamentalists saying the pope is the antichrist. Is there any reason why the pope cannot be the man of lawlessness?
Because the Holy Spirit guides the Church.
Because the anti-christ would lead people away from Christ, not to Him.
Because they have no evidence for it. Tradition has never postulated that one of the patriarchs of the ancient pentarchy (the bishops of the first five ancient churches - Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem, or Constantinople) would be the antichrist.
Just as Protestant understandings of being “born again”, following Christ through “faith alone”, using “scripture alone”, without “worshiping the saints”, or “praying to statues” is based in unfounded interpretations of Scripture or of the Church itself, so is any charge that the Pope must be the antichrist.
Somebody actually said that???
Quick! Read Second Peter. Specifically chapter three, verses sixteen and seventeen.
The secular world will say anything to divert people from the church…
it’s blasphemy I tell ya :onpatrol:
They also say Obama is the antichrist…who are they anyway?
Ah, yes. The “twisting of Scripture unto their own destruction” verses.
Is there any real, not manufactured, reason why the Holy Father would be?
I’m probably taking the question not so seriously but …
By their fruits you shall know them.
I don’t know much about Pope Francis but … if the anti-Christ is going around praising Jesus, reading scripture in a reverent way, and humbly washing people’s feet as Jesus did …
His boss (the Devil) is somewhere tearing his hair out. “THIS? THIS is the man of lawlessness? This guy couldn’t hold Josef Stalin’s pencil case! Where’s my killing? Where’s my dirty movies? Arrests of innocent people … (etc.)”
Humility is not the fruit of the proud spirit … and Pride was the devil’s sin in his “I will not serve!” < The absolute opposite of Jesus’ " … not MY will but thine be done!" And Mary’s " … let it be done unto me according to thy word" < to give a human example of humble obedience.
Tell your friends to relax. At least until the Swiss Guards get a nuke and start threatening people like the North Korean leader is now. :rolleyes:
Were some of these SAME people making the SAME charges against Pope Benedict?
Apparently now even THEY can see this was a “false witness”. The anti-Christ won’t be a resigning sort but a megalomaniac. And were they saying the SAME thing about Pope John Paul II? False witness.
It is true that the Bible speaks of a world leader who is satanic accompanied by a false prophet. There may also be a FALSE WORSHIP (as there has been before). At the time John wrote Revelation Roman emperors were acting as if THEY were divine and commanded people to worship them and their statues. Or be killed perhaps.
The Rome of that time (though it had the most gloriously praised CHURCH in the New Testament (see Romans Chapter 1) was the capital of an evil empire that seemed to be ruling all the world (the “civilized” world at that time). There are references to Rome in a negative way in Revelation.
Perhaps some think that when Satan tries to set up his false church for false worship like the Emperors of Rome had (and Satan remember even tempted Jesus to worship him) it will BE in Rome and perhaps be an imitation of the true church founded by Jesus and promised that the “Gates of Hell would not prevail against it”.
Or perhaps remembering how the “true faith” was perverted at the time Jesus came to earth by people like Herod (a thoroughly evil King … but in charge in the Holy Land when Jesus was born) and Caiaphas and Annas were in charge of the Temple at the time of Jesus’ Crucifixion, Resurrection and Ascension.
Satan likes to imitate and pervert holy things. His followers hold “Black Masses” and mock the Catholic Mass. Fundamentalist Prayer services? Not so much. :shrug:
That said, each Pope has free will. He can sin. Which is why each Pope has a confessor. An ACTUAL Pope being the anti-Christ or the anti-Christ’s prophet?
Sounds farfetched to me. Though it would be like Satan to try to set up a counterfeit Church that people preferred. < (I am influenced here by “Bishop Sheen” see below).
2 John 7 Many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh; such is the deceitful one and the antichrist.
Pope Francis, Pope Benedict and Pope John Paul II before them all acknowledge Jesus Christ coming in the flesh. And what’s more spread that news. Around the world and to the world. So … that should be enough proof for now that these are not the “son of Satan”.
And getting too involved with making scripture a fortune telling device could just as well equally point to a “protestant” anti-christ per:
1 John 2:18 Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that the antichrist was coming, so now many antichrists have appeared. Thus we know this is the last hour.
19 They went out from us, but they were not really of our number; 10 if they had been, they would have remained with us. Their desertion shows that none of them was of our number.
Having left the Church Jesus founded and with its promise concerning the gates of hell - did some of the ones who “went out from” John and the believers start their own church?
Or did they betray the believers to the Emperor’s troops (then persecuting the Christians whom John was giving his “last hour” warning to prior to their individual martyrdoms?
Archbishop Fulton Sheen wrote that the anti-Christ and his prophet would try to set up a counterfeit church … a church though without worship of God. Based on strictly human "virtues’.
In the time he wrote about that: Hitler had come and gone, but received worship like a Roman Emperor or a God. Stalin was ruling a from a Church (the Kremlin in Moscow - also a city built on 7 hills like Rome!) with a worldwide mission (like the Church’s) but insisting on a state atheism.
cathinfo.com/catholic.php/Abp-Fulton-Sheen-on-the-counterfeit-Church <posted excerpt from a Fulton Sheen book re:anti-Christ, 1948.
It’s a lot to think about. Better to get simple. Worship Jesus truly. In the Church that He founded. Loving God and neighbor. Staying awake against evil - but avoiding “idle speculation” and false witnesses that do not please God.
Will read later on. Thank you.
And, perhaps most important, verse 17: “You therefore, brethren, knowing these things before, take heed, lest being led aside by the error of the unwise, you fall from your own steadfastness.”