Monday's surprising announcement by Pope Benedict XVI that he was resigning from the papacy struck some observers like a bolt out of the blue. And a few hours later, an actual bolt of lightning struck St. Peter's Basilica, the centerpiece of the Vatican and one of the holiest sites in Christendom, NBC News reported. Was the lightning strike, coming just hours after Pope Benedict's announcement, evidence of God's wrath, or some ominous sign from above? Speculation over the resignation has focused on increasing pressure over the Vatican’s decades’ long protection of priests committing child abuse, the growing scandal over Vatican banking and finances, and intense infighting between the conservative and progressive wings of the Catholic Church. A Catholic saint has even been cited who prophesized that there would be a final Pope before the dissolution of the Catholic Church. According to this prophecy the next Pope will be the last.
The Vatican's cardinals were getting ready to leave a meeting to discuss three canonisations, chaired by Pope Benedict XVI, when he announced, in Latin, that he had one other bit of business to attend to. From his throne-like chair on a purple dais in the Sala del Concistoro, part of the Apostolic Palace, he quietly told his “fratres carissimi”, or “dear brothers”, that he needed to “communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church”. Having examined his conscience, he said, he had “come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry”. His “mind and body” were failing him, and in consequence he had decided to “renounce the ministry of the Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter”. The 265th Pope had just become the first in 598 years to resign. Angelo Sodano, dean of the College of Cardinals, who said it had come as a “bolt from the blue” when he was told.
|English: Pope Benedict XVI during general audition (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Just who is the Pope? The word Pope means “Father”. He claims to the “Holy Father”, and the successor to St Peter. They believe that Christ said he would build his Church on St Peter – they track the tradition of the office of Pope back to St Peter. Therefore they say this is proof the Pope represents God on earth. Catholicism is the true Church.
But Jesus never said he would build his church on Peter. In Matthew 16:16 Peter says that Jesus was the Christ and son of God. In verse 18 Jesus says “thou art Peter” and upon the rock of Peter’s statement he (Jesus) would build the church. Peter in fact means a small rolling stone. Christ did not build his church on that. He built it on himself. A ROCK. A huge unmoveable rock cliff. Rome is built on a pebble not a rock.
“and all drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank of the spiritual rock that followed them, and that rock was christ.” (1 Corinthians 10:4 MKJV)
“16 and Simon Peter answered and said, you are the christ, the son of the living god. 17 jesus answered and said to him, you are blessed, Simon, son of Jonah, for flesh and blood did not reveal [it] to you, but my father in heaven. 18 and I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and [the] gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:16-18 MKJV)
Peter = Petros (a single stone) Rock = Petra (solid formation like a cliff)
The church (ecclesia) was built on Peter’s statement NOT on Peter. The Pope is WRONG.
|Benedictus XVI in St Peter's Basilica, on June 29th, 2006. He then wore a Papal pallium, similar to those worn till the end of the 9th century. Since June 29th, 2008, he has been wearing another shorter one. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Well the Bible has a lot to say about “the Pope” and therefore we can expect God’s hand is behind this. God puts in power all the rulers of the world and there is no greater worldly ruler than the Pope. The Bible describes the role of the Pope in Daniel 7:8 - the Pope is the “little horn” that speaks great things against God. The pope is the “Roman ruler” (Daniel 9:26), the “man of sin” (2 Thessalonians 2:3), an “antichrist” (1 John 4:3), the “false prophet” (Revelation 16:13) “harlot” on the beast (Revelation 17:2-4).
When Christ returns and establishes his kingdom it will be the Pope that stands against Him. The woman and the beast (Rome and Europe) make war against Christ when he returns. (Rev 17:14) No wonder lightning struck the Vatican as this man stepped down.
“I was thinking about the horns, and behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom three of the first horns were uprooted. and behold, in this horn [were] eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.” (Daniel 7:8 MKJV)
“and after sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not [for] himself. and the people of the ruler who shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. and the end of it [shall be] with the flood, and ruins are determined, until [the] end [shall be] war.” (Daniel 9:26 MKJV)
“let not anyone deceive you by any means. for [that day shall not come] unless there first comes a falling away, and the man of sin shall be revealed, the son of perdition,” (2 Thessalonians 2:3 MKJV)
“and every spirit that does not confess that jesus christ has come in [the] flesh is not of god. and this is the antichrist you heard is coming, and even now is already in the world.” (1 John 4:3 MKJV)
“these will make war with the lamb, and the lamb will overcome them. for he is lord of lords and king of kings. and those with him [are] the called and elect and faithful ones.” (Revelation 17:14 MKJV)
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