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What Time is it: Part 6: The Dark Ages

  • What Time Is It? Part 6: The Dark Ages

     

    What Time is it? Parts 6 & 7: The End from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo.

     

     

    Transcript: This week I continue our series on end time events called “What time is it?” This is going to be part 6. This teaching brings us to a crossroads of what almost everyone seems to be teaching today, and what the Lord has shown me. It may be disturbing for some. It may you make you scratch your head and wonder if I have completely lost it.

    I apologize in advance for how long this message is, but it is a complex subject and instead of breaking it up, I want to cover it in one teaching.

    I am going to say some things that may sound shocking, I was shocked to learn them as well. I only want to open your eyes and mind to what has already happened on the earth during the last 2,000 years, since Jesus ascended.

    As you know, eschatology has been a passion of mine until I became so wrapped up in the rapture, the tribulation, the 70 weeks of Daniel, the beasts and such that one day the Lord told me through prophecy:

    “Son you are one that desires to know the end, from the beginning. Don’t be so concerned about the end of the Book, go back to the beginning and take another look. And you don’t need all of the things to fit, just allow your purpose and mine to knit.”

    It was a gentle rebuke, so I let it go and for the next 20 years, avoided end time discussions. I began to love history and documentaries. Then recently I felt the Lord bringing the end times back to my attention so I began to refresh my memory and prepare a message for that Sunday. I already knew what I would speak on and thought it would be easy, but half way through the week, I was really struggling to make the scriptures fit properly anymore. I mean I could write it out as good as the next person, but something in me didn’t believe it anymore. After all of the documentaries and history, my understanding of the events had changed.

    I finally stopped and began to pray instead of just repeating what I had been taught in the past by others, and the Lord began to show me somethings. By the end of the week, my eschatology was completely wrecked, and I just preached on something else. I was so conflicted about the teachings of some of my mentors, and I had to choose between what they taught, and what the Bible, when read in light of history teaches.

    I said all of that to bring you up to date on what I am about to tell you. Many are teaching the “Left Behind” theology of end time events and waiting on the rapture to save us from the anti-christ and the great tribulation. I feel that the Lord has shown me that most of this is smoke and mirrors while the enemy has been among us the whole time. Remember my story of the sand doodle earlier in the series, when uncovered, they dig back under the sand. If you missed any of this series, I would suggest that you go back and watch them to catch up.

    We have been covering the image that Nebuchadnezzar dreamed in Daniel chapter 2, and the beasts that Daniel dreamed in chapter 7. We have gone over:

    - The head of gold and the lion is the kingdom of Babylon.
    - The chest and arms of silver and the bear is Medo-Persia.
    - The waist and thighs of bronze and the leopard is Greece.
    - The legs of iron and the terrible beast is the Roman empire.

    All of these kingdoms replaced the previous one. Daniel interpreted Nebuchadnezzar’s dream like this in Daniel 2 verse 38:

    “You are this head of gold. But after you shall arise another kingdom inferior to yours; then another, a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth. And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron, inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything; and like iron that crushes, that kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the others. Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; yet the strength of the iron shall be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with ceramic clay.” (Daniel 2:38–41 NKJV).

    The feet and toes are made of iron, mixed with potters clay. Now we know that the fourth kingdom of iron was the Roman empire, and most agree on that, so this is where things get interesting.

    The Roman empire grew to be giant and powerful and no one could stand against them, but it grew so large that it began to collapse from the inside and around 285 A.D. it was divided into two kingdoms, the eastern and the western kingdoms, like the two legs in Daniels vision. They grew in differences and civil wars were fought between them.

    As time passed, those two kingdoms began to break down as well, and as they grew weaker and disorganized, external forces began to invade them and conquer areas. This went from around 351 A.D. Until about 476 A.D. When the last Roman emperor Romulus Augustus was deposed by the Germanic king Odoacer.

    There was confusion, chaos, war, and borders shifted back and forth, but eventually the empire was broken into ten nations ruled by:

    01) The Huns led by Attila the Hun.
    02) The Ostrogoths in Italy.
    03) The Visigoths in Southwestern France.
    04) The Franks in Northern France (Notice the name).
    05) The Vandals in Northern Africa.
    06) The Suevi in northern Portugal.
    07) The Burgundians in Belgium.
    08) The Heruli in Serbia.
    09) The Anglo-Saxons in Great Britain.
    10) The Lombards on the Italian Peninsula.

    Many kingdoms rose and fell, many are still with us today like England and France. There is much confusion and division as to what and when but I am going to try not to get bogged down in tiny details and focus on the bigger picture of what rose later.

    We know that the Iron represents Rome. The real question to me is what is the clay?

    Where in scripture have we seen potter’s clay? I did a Bible search on “Potter’s Clay” and found these:

    (Isaiah 64:8 NKJV) “But now, O LORD, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter; And all we are the work of Your hand.”

    So the clay can represent God’s people in scripture…

    (Jeremiah 18:1–6 NKJV) “The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying: “Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause you to hear My words.” Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying: “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter?” says the LORD. “Look, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel!”

    Again we see that the clay is God’s people. What about the New Testament? Paul wrote this in Romans 9:20:

    (Romans 9:20–21 NKJV) “O man, who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, “Why have you made me like this?” Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor?”

     

    So “Potter’s Clay” in scripture can represent the people of God. We already know that the iron represents Rome. So the feet and toes of the Daniel chapter 2 image are parts of Rome mixed with parts of God’s people. Lets take a look at history.

    After Jesus ascended, Rome heavily persecuted Christians for around 300 years. The emperors ordered Christian buildings and the homes of Christians torn down and their sacred books collected and burned. Christians were arrested, tortured, mutilated, burned, starved, and condemned to gladiatorial contests to amuse spectators.

    The Romans had a statewide religion which included “The Imperial Cult” which was emperor worship, making the emperor into a god. The Romans worshipped several gods and demi-gods who had originally been human, but rose above that to divine status. The Romans worshiped a vast number of gods including: Jupiter, Neptune, Juno, Mars, and Venus.

    The Romans celebrated special days for their gods by holding festivals, which included processions and parties. There were thirty-two Roman religious festivals in January alone.

    Roman religion involved cult worship. Approval from the gods did not depend on a person’s behavior, but on accurate observance of religious rituals. Each god needed an image – usually a statue in stone or bronze – and an altar or temple at which to offer prayers and sacrifices. Worshiping them included bowing down to their statues and burning incense.

    About 60 A.D. the Romans brought us our seven day week, named after their gods:

    Names of our Days:
    - Sunday was named after their “sun god.”
    - Monday was named after their “moon god.”
    - Tuesday was named after “mars.”
    - Wednesday was named after “mercury.”
    - Thursday was named after “jupiter.”
    - Friday was named after “venus.”
    - Saturday was named after “saturn.”

    Names of our Months:
    - January was named after the god “janus.”
    - March was named after the god “mars.”
    - April was named after “aphrodite.”
    - May was named after the “goddess of spring.”
    - June was named after the goddess “juno.”
    - July was named after Julius Caesar.
    - August was named after Augustus Caesar

    Traces of Pagan Rome are everywhere that you look today, so much so that no one sees it anymore.

    Early Christians were appalled at the idol worship and saw the cult of the Emperor as a particularly offensive instrument of "pagan" persecution. Pagan Rome was full of religion, gods, idols, and carved images.

    The Roman empire was eventually divided into two parts, the East and the West, and they had serious religious differences and civil wars between them. Using religion to control people has always been an effective tool and eventually a roman emperor saw that he could unite the kingdoms under one religion, Christianity.

    Emperor Constantine who was a sun worshipper, began to merge pagan Rome with Christianity. Their statue of Jupiter was renamed St. Peter. The statue of Venus was renamed Mary, and thus paganism continued to flourish at Rome, but now it was called “Christianity.” The two became mixed together into a universal religion that everyone could accept, pagan Rome and Christians alike.

    Legend has it that this statue of Peter was originally the statue of the Roman god Jupiter, it was merely moved and renamed to Saint Peter. So many Christian pilgrims have kissed his feet that it has worn the solid brass toes off of it.

    Leviticus 26:1 reads:
    You shall not make idols for yourselves; neither a carved image nor a sacred pillar shall you rear up for yourselves; nor shall you set up an engraved stone in your land, to bow down to it; for I am the LORD your God.

    That is all that I will say about that.

    Christianity became Rome's state religion. Rome's traditional gods and the ”Imperial cult" were officially abandoned. However, many of the rites, practices and status distinctions that characterized the cult were included into the theology and politics of the new “Christianized” Empire.

    The Christians at the time had been heavily persecuted, and now they were offered acceptance and power as respected leaders. A compromise was made. Did the empire surrender to Christianity, or did Christianity prostitute itself to the empire? That is the question. Has something like this happened in other places at other times?

    Hitler in Nazi Germany:
    Hitler was baptized as a Roman Catholic as a child. He was shrewdly aware of the power of religion in politics. Hitler was supportive of Christianity in public, but he was hostile to it in private. His peers wrote that: “Hitler is "deeply religious, but completely anti-Christian. He hates Christianity.”

    The Nazi party created a religion called “National Socialism” or ”Positive Christianity" which stripped the religion of its Jewish origins, set up Hitler as a messianic figure, and did not require the belief in the divinity of Christ. The Christian cross was replaced with the swastika. They called the Protestant movement “Negative Christianity” and slowly this new, fake, government created church worked to replace the actual protestant church. Even now, in Germany, your church tithes are taken directly out of your paycheck. They call it the “church tax.” When all was done, we had a church calling itself Christian, but executing and imprisoning all of those that opposed it… many who were Christians.

    Modern Day China:
    I recently read a book called “The Heavenly man” written by “Brother Yun” who lived in China and established house churches there. He shares testimonies of persecutions and miracles like those straight out of the Bible. It is horrible how bad Christians have suffered under the Chinese government. You could not legally have a bible there so when he found one, he memorized the gospels and that is how he preached, entirely from memory.

    After decades of the government intensely persecuting Christians, the house churches continued to thrive much like the first church did in Acts. So the Chinese government decided to give them what they wanted, but still maintain control and they created a government controlled church that preaches what they want. It is a “blend” of religions. Predictably enough, they persecuted and imprisoned Christians like Brother Yun who did not want to be a part of it.

    One night Brother Yun had a vivid dream that a “harlot” appeared in front of him with her shirt open, trying to seduce him and inviting him to come to bed with her, then he woke up. The next morning he received an official invitation from the government church to speak there and become a part of it. He knew the dream was a picture of the compromised, government run state religion. She had sold herself out. A church calling itself Christian, but killing, raping, and imprisoning all those that oppose it…

    It reminds me of (Revelation 17:3–6 NKJV) “So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication. And on her forehead a name was written: MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. And when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement.”

    The beast with the ten horns is Rome, but it is being ridden by a harlot, dressed in purple and scarlet, and drunk with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. Now who could that be…

    I will stop at this point to tell you that I have done so much research on this subject that I could preach the next several months on this. I am not shooting from the hip with a flippant idea that suddenly came to me, but came to this conclusion after serious digging and praying. I don’t expect you to believe what I do, I just hope to open your mind a little and make you think a little.

    If you have not figured it out by now, I will tell you. Most of the Protestant reformers, including Martin Luther, John Calvin, Thomas Cranmer, John Thomas, and John Knox, identified the Roman Catholic Church as the beast and the office of the pope, as the seat of the anti-christ. His very title, “Vicar of Christ” literally means “Substitute Christ.” The colors of their robes are purple and scarlet, the golden cup they use during mass, and it has drank deeply of the blood of the saints. Remember the three Ps of warning from earlier in the series: Pride, Pomp and Power.

    It was hard for the early Protestant reformers to see anything else when they were being hunted like animals and being burned at the stake as heretics, simply because they disagreed with the church. Many of these were highly educated Catholics themselves, like Martin Luther who was a Roman Catholic Priest that could read the scriptures in latin and see how far that the church had fallen from the truth.

    Martin Luther said: “This teaching [of the supremacy of the pope] shows forcefully that the Pope is the very Antichrist, who has exalted himself above, and opposed himself against Christ, because he will not permit Christians to be saved without his power, which, nevertheless, is nothing, and is neither ordained nor commanded by God” (Smalcald Articles, II).

    Many churches and preachers have held that scripture points out Papal Rome as the fallen church of biblical prophecy. One verse in particular is used to point specifically to the coming apostate church:

    (2 Thessalonians 2:5–9 NKJV) “Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.”

    The spirit of antichrist, or “mystery of lawlessness” was already at work when Paul wrote it. The Roman empire was restraining the antichrist, and when he arose, he would continue until the end. Paul and John were living under Roman rulers and that is why they had to write “around” things like when John described the antichrist as number 666 in Revelation.

    If Paul would have said here that Rome was going to be taken out of the way and the letter was discovered, there would be been retaliation by the emperors. So he just said “Do you not remember that I told you these things…” He told them in person and would not put it in writing for it to be discovered.

    Another example, Peter wrote in 1 Peter 5:13 “She who is in Babylon, elect together with you, greets you; and so does Mark my son.”

    Babylon is a codeword for Rome in the New Testament. They lived under ruthless Roman emperors and could not mention “Rome” in a negative way, so they called it “Babylon.” Peter could not have been in Babylon when he wrote that verse, as we covered, babylon was nothing by this point and there is no record of Peter, Mark, of even a Christian church being there. But there is strong historical evidence that Peter was in Rome around the time that he wrote this letter. Just as babylon had been the economic center of power, so was Rome during the life of Peter. Rome is called Babylon 3 more times in the book of revelation: (Rev. 16:19; 17:5; 18:2).

    Many of the early Christian historians and theologians came to this conclusion:

    Jerome (347–420) wrote: Says the apostle [Paul in the second epistle to the Thessalonians], ‘Unless the Roman Empire should first be desolated, and antichrist proceed, Christ will not come.’" Jerome in addition identifies the little horn power of Daniel 7:25 which 'shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws' as the Papacy.

    John Wesley's Explanatory Notes give the following on this apostate power which follows the empire of Rome: 2 Thessalonians 2:7 He will surely be revealed; for the mystery - The deep, secret power of iniquity, just opposite to the power of godliness, already worketh. It began with the love of honour, and the desire of power; and is completed in the entire subversion of the gospel of Christ. This mystery of iniquity is not wholly confined to the Romish church, but extends itself to others also.

    Martin Luther stated: "We are not the first to declare the papacy to be the kingdom of Antichrist, since for many years before us so many and so great men have undertaken to express the same thing so clearly."

    Corruption:
    After being made the state church of Rome, the church gradually became worldly and corrupt. As Paul warned in Galatians 1:7, there are those that will “pervert” the gospel of Christ and mix works, with grace to earn their way to heaven.

    Roman Catholicism requires libraries of encyclopedias to explain what the writers of the Bible meant, and teach that only their priests can understand it and explain it to you. To believe that the Lord can speak directly to you through scripture is “anathema” and heresy. They fought real hard to keep the Bible out of the hands of the common man and put to death those that tried to translate it for centuries. They teach that God does not speak to the common man, but only to the priests, and the pope and that active participation in the Catholic church makes one a Christian, not your faith.

    Compare that to Luke 10:21 when the disciples returned from their mission trip: “In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.”

    Acts 4:13 reads: “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.”

    The only time that the word “Uneducated” appears in the Bible is when it is referring to the Apostles of Jesus, which could explain why He chose me.

    Purgatory:
    Roman Catholicism teaches that when you die, that you go to a place called purgatory to pay for your sins. In words they say that you are saved by grace, but in actions, you pay for your own sin either by suffering here, or in purgatory for an unknown amount of time.

    Catholic law explains it like this:
    210. What is purgatory?
    Purgatory is the state of those who die in God’s friendship, assured of their eternal salvation, but who still have need of purification to enter into the happiness of heaven.

    211. How can we help the souls being purified in purgatory?
    Because of the communion of saints, the faithful who are still pilgrims on earth are able to help the souls in purgatory by offering prayers in suffrage for them, especially the Eucharistic sacrifice. They also help them by almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance.

    When the idea of purgatory first came about, you could buy your way out of it in advance by giving money to the church through almsgiving, indulgences, and various forms of works like praying to dead saints and Mary. Doing these things would shorten your time there.

    Eventually this was expanded to include those that were already dead as well. It became an immensely profitable enterprise and gave new meaning to the term: “Money for nothing.” Who would not want to pay for a dearly loved one to escape torment?

    No one can tell you how much it costs to get out of purgatory, and it scales accordingly to your net worth, because it has to be a sacrifice. Catholics deny that you can buy your way out of purgatory, but at the same time sell “Mass cards” where you can buy the Eucharist for the dead. Millions of dollars pour into the church through these, and they take paypal… Because no one knows how much it costs, you just have to keep buying them.

    Indulgences and Dispensations:
    In the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, an indulgence is "a way to reduce the amount of punishment one has to undergo for sins" and they are sold for money and given for attending certain church events on certain days.

    The corruption in the church and blatantly selling indulgences was one of the focuses of Martin Luther, who himself was a trained Catholic priest. In 1517, Pope Leo X offered indulgences for those who gave alms to rebuild St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. The aggressive marketing practices in promoting this cause provoked Martin Luther to write his Ninety-Five Theses, condemning what he saw as the purchase and sale of salvation. In Thesis 28 Luther objected to the saying: "As soon as a coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs". It is commonly believed that the Catholic Church was in the business of selling indulgences for money, though the Church itself says that all such transactions were officially classified as donations.

    The Council of the church also stated that "Catholics who have girded themselves with the cross for the extermination of the heretics, shall enjoy the indulgences and privileges granted to those who go in defense of the Holy Land.” So killing heretics could get out of purgatory sooner.

    As I see it, they invented purgatory and then began selling tickets out of it, even if you are dead…

    A dispensation could be purchased with money that allowed you to escape the rules that apply to others. For instance, for a time you could purchase a dispensation that allowed you to eat, while fasting. Another one is divorce, or what they call an “Annulment.” Again they don’t sell these, but a fitting donation is required, and once again, money changes hands to obtain the favor of the church.

    In Catholicism anything is possible with a financial offering. Family may go to purgatory but Mass Stipends / Cards / Indulgences will get them out. They passionately deny that the church is selling salvation, but the fact is that money is changing hands and the promise of salvation is the incentive for the gifts. With this system, it is the rich that will inherit the kingdom of God, not the meek. Apologists claim that after Martin Luther left, the church cleaned up its act and forbade the sell of indulgences, but even if it did, it had robbed millions of people for several hundred years and they offered no refunds nor apologies… Since the year 2000, indulgences are beginning to make a comeback.

    One thing is clear to me is that Roman Catholicism claims we are saved by grace, but is mixed with works just as Paul warned the Galatians about. The free unmerited grace of Christ has been perverted.

    Persecution:
    The Catholic Church began to ruthlessly hunt its enemies, all in the name of Jesus. Foxes book of martyrs records slaughters of hundreds of thousands of Christians, by Catholics. The early protestant reformers kept a copy of this book on their pulpits beside their Bibles as a reminder of who the real enemy was.

    Today, catholics will deny that any of this ever happened, that the church has hurt no one, but the hundreds of thousands of burned Christian martyrs over hundreds of years don’t lie. Here are just a few notable ones:

    - Jan Hus (in 1415, for heresies against the Roman Catholic church, he was stripped naked, placed in straw up to his neck, and burned alive).

    - William Tyndale (in 1536, the translator of the first Bible into English was strangled to death, then burned at the stake as a heretic).

    - Giordano Bruno (in 1548, on the order of Pope Clement VIII, was burned at the stake for claiming that the sun is one of many stars).

    - Joan of Arc (in 1431, France's most famous saint was burned alive for the "heresy" of wearing men's clothes in an attempt to avoid rape). Later the Catholic church made her a saint… If you stay around long enough, you can just rewrite history and change what you don’t like about it.


    The Inquisitions:
    As opposition grew from the protestant reformation, the Catholic church established the inquisitions. The Inquisition was a group of institutions within the government system of the Catholic Church whose aim was to combat heresy.

    It became one of the most evil and corrupted systems that the earth has ever seen. It still exists today, but in 1904 was given the new name of "Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.”

    At first the Inquisitions started as public hearings, but grew to be held in secret, and your guilt was assumed from the start. There were no juries, no legal representation for the accused. No disclosure of any evidence against the accused. No appeal. Inquisitors were allowed to excuse each other for breaches of the rules - which meant that in effect there were no rules.

    There were secret depositions and anonymous accusations, torture and unlimited detention in appalling conditions for those who failed to confess. People were walled up, and chained, with no light and given only bread and water. Dead people were tried along with the living. When found guilty their children were disinherited. At least half the estate generally went to the Church - so that the Church had a direct material interest in reaching a guilty verdict. Eventually they began digging up wealthy people that had died, finding them guilty of heresy, and seizing their possessions from the family.

    It became so profitable for the church that Pope Innocent IV, made the Inquisition into a permanent institution. In 1252 he issued a papal bull which explicitly authorized the use of torture, seizure of goods and execution, all on minimal evidence. Torture was to be administered by the secular authority, but when this proved impractical, the inquisitors were allowed to administer it themselves (and to absolve each other for doing so). Thereafter it was an exceptional man, woman or child who could not quickly be convinced of his or her heresy.

    The accused were imprisoned, often for many months, before being examined. They were often kept in solitary confinement, in terrible conditions, in a dark dungeon, and without adequate heating, food or water. This was deliberate, and designed to ensure that most of the accused would already have broken by the time of the first examination. Only the strongest characters were able to face a tribunal of hooded figures who claimed to have heard witnesses and seen incriminating evidence.

    Most were prepared to admit anything, even though they did not know what to admit to. Those who failed to admit their crimes were taken to torture chamber and shown the instruments of torture. This too was designed to terrify and break them - the dark chamber, the horrifying instruments, the torturer-executioner dressed and hooded in black. If they still failed to admit their guilt they were then subjected to torture: men, women and children alike. Some people were tortured for years before confessing to be heretics. Only the most exceptional could resist. Every day they risked being tortured to death, and when they finally confessed, the Roman Catholic Church seized their property.

    Torture grew ever more intricate. The rack was a favorite for dislocating limbs where you were literally stretched apart. When their joints were dislocated, a physician would often set them back in place and they would be given a couple of months to heal, then tortured and dislocated again.

    The victim could be flogged, bathed in scalding water with lime, and have their eyes removed with purpose designed eye-gougers. Fingernails were pulled off. Thumbscrews were applied to thumbs and big-toes until the bones were crushed. The victim was forced to sit on a spiked iron chair which could be heated by a fire underneath until it glowed red-hot. Branding irons and red hot pincers were also used.

    The victim's feet could be placed in a wooden frame called a boot. Wedges were then hammered in until the bones shattered, and the "blood and marrow spouted forth in great abundance". Alternatively the feet could be held over an open fire, and literally roasted until the bones fell out; or they could be placed in huge leather boots into which boiling water was poured, or in metal boots into which molten lead was poured. Since the holy proceedings were conducted for the greater glory of God, all the instruments of torture were sprinkled with holy water.

    The inquisitions were a horribly sick system like the world has never seen before, and its main motivation was greed. If you were wealthy, you were almost certainly a heretic. They made Adolf Hitler look like a saint.


    Humorous:
    The Catholic church has a long and bloody history that is very sobering, and other parts that make me laugh until my sides hurt.

    The Catholic church teaches that the pope is “Infallible” and when he sits on his throne, that he speaks as God Himself. Here are a few things that make me question that:

    * Pope John VII was beaten to death by a jealous husband who came home early and caught him bedding his wife.

    * Pope Benedict IX became the pope between the ages of 11 to 20 when his father bribed the Romans buying him the office. One historian wrote that in Benedict, "It seemed as if a demon from hell, in the disguise of a priest, occupied the chair of Peter and profaned the sacred mysteries of religion by his insolent courses." The Catholic Encyclopedia calls him "a disgrace to the Chair of Peter."

    Benedict eventually became bored with being a pope, decided to get married, and sold the office of the papacy for a large sum of money. Then later he changed his mind and retook the throne again. He was pope three times.

    * Ga-li-leo who was an astronomer during the 1600s, discovered that the earth revolved around the sun when everyone else thought that the earth was the center of the universe. The Roman inquisition tried him as a heretic and found him guilty. His books were banned and he was sentenced to “infinite imprisonment.” He died under house arrest in 1642. It turns out that Galileo was right and the earth does revolve around the sun. I guess infallible doesn’t have to mean smart, or right.

    * For forty years from 1378 to 1417 during the great schism, three men claimed to be the one true pope at the same time, and all three of them excommunicated the other two competitors. The Council of Constance deposed all three of them, and elected a new one: Pope Martin V.

    * In January 897 Pope Stephen VI had his predecessor dug up, dressed him in royal clothing, and put him on trial. They call it “The cadaver trial.” They propped the corpse up on the throne and assigned him someone to speak for him. Eventually, the corpse was found guilty. Sources say that, after having the corpse stripped of its papal clothing, Stephen then cut off the three fingers of the right hand that it had used in life for blessings, formally invalidated all of his acts and ordinations, including, ironically, his own ordination. The body was then cast into the Tiber River.

    If that was not weird enough, the pope following him convened a synod that annulled the cadaver synod, and then the pope that succeeded him, annulled his ruling and reinstated it, so back and forth they went.

    So greedy, power hungry, immoral sexual predators, that bought and sold the office of the pope and they claim that they are infallible and speak as God. I smell something funny…

    End Time Deceptions:
    So what does all that have to do with us today? When the Protestant Reformation began to really hurt the Catholic church and show from scripture that it was indeed the beast, thousands began fleeing Catholicism. The church tried to wipe them out and killed thousands of Protestants, labeling them as heretics and granting indulgences to those that hunted them.

    Jesus told us in (John 16:1–4 NKJV): “These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble. They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service. And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me. But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them.”

    As the Catholic Church burned Protestants at the stake as heretics, they only proved that they were the baddies, and the number of Protestants continued to grow. So around 1545 the Catholic church launched a “Counter-Reformation” to address the Protestant accusations using other means.

    They had formed a new religious order called the (jEH-szoo-iht) Jesuits, also known as the Society of Jesus. This was an elite branch of highly educated and trained Catholic priests that targeted education (founding schools, colleges, universities and seminaries).

    The Jesuits became preachers, confessors to monarchs and princes, and humanist educators. Their job was to counter the Protestant movement and to shift the focus away from the Catholic Church being the beast. Two of them came up with believable theories:

    - Luis de Alcasar came up with a doctrine know as Preterism and shifted the end time prophecies of Daniel and Revelation into the past, basically pointing to the Roman Emperor Nero as the anti-christ. This view was resisted by many, but grew and still has many followers today.

    - Another priest named Francisco Ribera came up with a doctrine called Futurism, and shifted the end time prophecies into the future. The restoration of the Roman Empire, the great tribulation, the rapture of the church, the coming anti-christ comes directly from this teaching. This is where the “Left Behind” theology that is being taught in so many churches today came from, and it was created ONLY to shift the blame away from the Catholic church being the beast.

    Before the Protestant Reformation, none of these teachings existed. I was completely shocked to learn this myself, but I am including links to the articles so that you can research it for yourself. That is why there is a mysterious 2,000 year gap in history where nothing seemed to happen in Bible prophecy. The gap theory that people use to put the anti-christ in the future just means that the sand doodle has dug back into the sand. Futurists are able to sweep 1500 years of church history under the rug by inserting a huge GAP into the prophecies of Daniel and revelation.

    The original teaching put the coming of Jesus at the end of the tribulation, but later Margaret McDonald (about 1830) saw the “rapture” in a vision. Before 1830 no one believed in such a thing. A man named Darby started preaching it, and Cyrus Ingerson Scofield was greatly influenced his writing. He put it in the footnotes of his study bible, the Scofield study bible. It was released in 1909 and became popular in American Protestant Bible Schools, millions of copies were printed. The futurist view began to spread across America, and I grew up learning it.

    The pre-tribulation rapture idea is a lie that is built on top of another lie, the futurists Jesuit antichrist teaching. The futurist school of Bible Prophecy was created for one reason, and one reason only: To counter the Protestant Reformation. We are teaching fairy tales.

    When you think of it, everyone teaching the futurist view learned it from someone else. No one read their Bible and came to that conclusion on their own. They are repeating what they have learned or read from others just like I did, and if you trace it back to its roots, it leads to Francisco Ribera, a Catholic Jesuit priest who wrote it to counter the Protestant movement in the 1500s.

    What Is The Danger?:
    For hundreds of years the Catholic church ruled over large parts of the world. Entire continents like South America were forced to choose between Catholicism and death. Their crusades killed thousands. Catholicism was forced on the world, whether they wanted it or not.

    Meanwhile in England, Mary 1, a Catholic Queen, became known as “Bloody Mary” for killing so many Protestants during her reign. All around the world, Protestants were persecuted and being put to death by Catholic run governments.

    The Pilgrims left England in 1640 and established a new colony in America in order to escape religious persecution. In 1647 the Massachusetts Bay Colony passed a law prohibiting any Jesuit Roman Catholic priests from entering territory under Puritan jurisdiction. Any suspected Jesuit who could not clear himself was to be banished from the colony; a second offense carried a death penalty.

    The first amendment known as “The separation of church and state” and “Freedom of religion” is for our own protection from religious persecution from entities like the Catholic church, and it is the reason that they were written. Throughout history, wherever Catholicism became the national religion, all the people that would not convert, were purged, especially Protestants.

    The 70 weeks of Daniel:
    The 70 weeks of Daniel chapter 9 are used to support the future anti-christ teaching so I want to take a moment to examine that. Now in Bible prophecy a day can represent a year, so we are talking about a timespan of 70x7=490 years. The futurist theory places a 2,000+ year gap inbetween the 69nth and the 70nth week and makes the 70nth week of Daniel into the great tribulation, but it was already fulfilled during the life of Jesus. 

    Numbers 14:34. The Israelites wandered for 40 years in the wilderness, one year for every day spent by the spies in Canaan.

    Ezekiel 4:5-6. The prophet Ezekiel is commanded to lie on his left side for 390 days, followed by his right side for 40 days, to symbolize the equivalent number of years of punishment on Israel and Judah respectively.

    Jesus used the same principle in Luke 13:31: On that very day some Pharisees came, saying to Him, “Get out and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill You.” And He said to them, “Go, tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.’

    History tells us that these days, were actually years. Jesus’ ministry spanned about 3 1/12 years, not days. In light of that:

    Daniel 9:24 reads:
    Seventy weeks are determined
    For your people and for your holy city,
    To finish the transgression,
    To make an end of sins,
    To make reconciliation for iniquity,
    To bring in everlasting righteousness,
    To seal up vision and prophecy,
    And to anoint the Most Holy.

    (The angel was speaking about Daniel’s people and about his people’s city of Jerusalem and the coming Messiah, Jesus).

    25 “Know therefore and understand,
    That from the going forth of the command
    To restore and build Jerusalem
    Until Messiah the Prince,
    There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks;
    The street shall be built again, and the wall,
    Even in troublesome times.

    (In Ezra chapter 7 he was given permission by Artaxerxes to return to the city of Jerusalem loaded with gold and treasures and to restore the items that were taken to Babylon. This was in 457 B.C. It was during troublesome times.)

    26 “And after the sixty-two weeks
    Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself;
    And the people of the prince who is to come
    Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.
    The end of it shall be with a flood,
    And till the end of the war desolations are determined.
    27 Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering.

    The first week + 62 weeks is 483 years and when added to 457 B.C. Would bring us to about 27 A.D. Which is when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. This was the beginning of the 70nth week and the ministry of Jesus, the Anointed One.

    - “He would confirm a covenant with many”: Jesus brought in the “New Covenant” of grace and the “New Testament.”

    - “In the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering”: Jesus brought an end to the temple sacrifices by sacrificing Himself on the cross and the veil in the temple torn from top to bottom. God will not accept anymore sacrifices after that. It was 3 1/2 years into His ministry, halfway through the 7 year period.

    - At the end of the 7 years, Stephen was martyred and the gospel was taken from the Jews, to the gentiles.

    - “And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.” As we covered in “Surrounded by Armies” the Roman Prince Titus destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the temple marking an end of the Jewish nation for about 1,878 years. Israel was re-established again in 1948.

    The 70 weeks of Daniel is already fulfilled in history and in the life of Jesus. The “left behind” theology puts a 2,000 year gap between the 69nth and the 70nth week, and between the legs and feet of the image in Daniel chapter 2. There are no gaps, one week follows the other, one kingdom on the image replaces the previous one.

    The 1,260 Days:

    Scripture mentions a span of time equaling 1,260 days, 7 times:

    - Daniel 7:25, "time, times and a half a time”.
    - Daniel 12:7, "time, times and a half a time".
    - Revelation 11:2, "42 months".
    - Revelation 11:3, "1260 days".
    - Revelation 12:6, "1260 days".
    - Revelation 12:14, "time, times and a half a time".
    - Revelation 13:5, "42 months".

    The 3 1/2 years, 42 months, 1,260 days are all the same time span. There are various interpretations of this but the most common places the start in 538 A.D. When the Ostrogoths were defeated during the siege of Rome and the pope given full power over all the churches uncontested.

    Exactly 1,260 years later, in 1798, Napoleon’s army invaded Rome and took Pope Pius VI prisoner who then died while exiled in France. Rome was completely defeated, subdued, and the pope dethroned. Napoleon took the popes golden tiara for himself. But soon the Popery was re-established, it had been badly wounded, but it was not dead. Today it is all but forgotten.

    Summary:
    (Revelation 13:3 NKJV) “And all the world marveled and followed the beast. So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?”

    The Catholic church has over 1.2 billion members and it dwarfs all other religions of the world. They teach that: “Outside the Catholic Church there is no salvation.” I don’t see how we can reconcile the differences between Protestantism and Catholicism but there are those today working to sweep all of the history away and to say that the “Protestant Reformation” was just a misunderstanding. I don’t see that.

    The prophets of old were persecuted by the religious organizations, the priest hood. Jesus was crucified by Roman soldiers who were carrying out the wishes of the religious priests. All of the Apostles were persecuted and killed, because of religion. Millions of Christians have been martyred over the centuries, in the name of Jesus.

    The biggest threat to Christians is organized religion working through the government just as it has always been. Shifting the blame to some rising political leader and thinking that the rapture will whisk you away to safety is deception. It is smoke and mirrors. Protestant denominations are teaching heretical doctrines that were created by the Roman Catholic Church in order to counter the Protestant movement. Wow.

    I want to make it clear that Jesus Christ is coming back to the earth just as He said and the rock made without hands will soon smash the manmade kingdoms, just not in the way that we are being taught. I am only trying to get you to re-examine what you have been taught and be sure that it actually lines up with history.

    I feel that we are in the last days, standing on the edge of the end of time, and when Jesus Christ returns to the earth, there will be the saved, and there will be the dead.

    Many Christians have been taught that God’s church will be silently raptured away seven years before Jesus actually returns. Then those that are left behind will have a second chance to be saved. When He returns, there will be no escape, there will be no second chance to repent. The time for repenting is now.

    Jesus told us in Matthew 13:30: “Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.” In this verse, the wicked were destroyed first.

    As in the days of Noah, so shall the coming of the Son of man be. The saved were protected, and the wicked were dead.

    Oddly enough one of the key verses in the silent rapture teaching is 1 Thessalonians 4:16: “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God.”

    We have Jesus shouting, the voice of an Archangel, and the trumpets of God blasting, that hardly sounds like a silent event. The “thief in the night” theory is a misapplication. Thieves in Bible times attacked suddenly and with shrieking to instill terror. It was not a silent attack but sudden and surprising to the unsuspecting victim.

    Peter wrote in 2Peter 3:10: “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat;” both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.

    Again we have “great noise” and the elements melting with fervent heat. There is no second chance. When Jesus comes back, there will be the saved and the dead.

    God has some wonderful people in the Catholic church, that is the mixture of iron and potter’s clay, but Catholicism itself… wow, I don’t even know where to begin. I have not even touched on Mary worship, bowing to statues, praying to the dead, forbidding clergy to marry, and so much more. In Revelation 18:4 speaking about the woman riding the beast, John wrote: “And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.”

    Some of God’s people are inside of her.

    Paul wrote in 2 Thessalonians 2:3: “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”

    The great apostasy, the falling away, was the dark ages. Since the reformation in the 1500s, long lost biblical truths have been being restored to the church one truth at a time. Being saved by Grace, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, Miracles of Healing, The five fold ministry of Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, and Teachers.

    We are standing at the end of time, on the very toes of the image in Daniel chapter 2. The next thing coming is the fullness of the kingdom of God. The dark ages are now behind us, the great falling away is behind us. Now we are going to see a Glorious Restored Church that spreads the gospel around the world before the return of Jesus, the bride who has made herself ready. Drop the fear tactics and lift your head up for our redemption draws near.

    Revelation 19:6–8 (NASB): “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns. “Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”

    References for further research:

    http://www.ancient.eu/Western_Roman_Empire/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Huns

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ostrogothic_Kingdom

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visigothic_Kingdom

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franks

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vandals

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_the_Suebi

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_the_Burgundians

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herules

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anglo-Saxons

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_the_Lombards

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constantine_the_Great_and_Christianity

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperial_cult_(ancient_Rome)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Roman_deities

    http://www.pbs.org/empires/romans/empire/worship.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Names_of_the_days_of_the_week

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brother_Yun

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_views_of_Adolf_Hitler

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positive_Christianity

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reichskonkordat

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_tax

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Apostasy

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_John_XII

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Benedict_IX

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galileo_affair

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Schism

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cadaver_Synod

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Hus#Execution

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Tyndale

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giordano_Bruno

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_of_Arc#Execution

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inquisition

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congregation_for_the_Doctrine_of_the_Faith

    http://www.heretication.info/_inquisition.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indulgence

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/10/nyregion/10indulgence.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protestant_Reformation

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counter-Reformation

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Society_of_Jesus

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Preterism

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Futurism_(Christianity)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_I_of_England

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations_by_number_of_members

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Republic_(18th_century)


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13 comments
  • 0
Dion Todd
Dion Todd Here is the message from RHM Live on Sunday.
January 9, 2017
  • 1
Deng Tembreza
Deng Tembreza

I am a Catholic but I love your ministry.  It is very disturbing

January 11, 2017
  • 1
Dion Todd
Dion Toddedited: January 13, 2017

It was not a message that I wanted to bring, and I knew that it would upset a lot of Catholics, like 1.2 billion of them, but it is what I believe to be the truth. Pray to Jesus Himself (not Mary or saints) and see what He tells you. I believe that you can know Jesus and be a catholic, and that you can know Jesus and not be a catholic. Knowing Jesus is what matters, nothing else. What disturbs me is the move towards a one world religion united under the pope, and after studying the history of the church, we do not want to repeat it.

January 13, 2017
  • 1
Deng Tembreza
Deng Tembreza

I respect and love Virgin Mary for she took care of OUR LORD JESUS CHIRIST when HE was with us.  Mama Mary deserves respect for she is the chosen one to carry our LORD JESUS CHRIST in her womb.  For Blessed is she among women and SHE deserves all respect  as we respect our mother.  That is all SHE is asking for.  Am I right Pastor?

January 13, 2017
  • 1
Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd

Deng, I am personally friends with a lot of Catholics who have a true love for and faith in Jesus. You are also welcome to disagree and still be a valued part of RHM <3. We are not required to agree on everything to be brothers and sisters in Christ :)

January 13, 2017
  • 1
Deng Tembreza
Deng Tembreza

Very true Sylvia.  We Catholics love, believe, trrust and have faith in our LORD JESUS CHRIST as much as other religions do.  The only thing that separates us from you is our love and respect for the VIRGIN MARY.  She deserve to be respected and be loved too for She is the mother of our LORD JESUS CHRIST when HE was with us here in earth as human.  I hope I am still very welcome to the RHM family. GOD LOVES US ALL SO MUCH

January 13, 2017
  • 1
Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd

You are certainly welcome and loved here, Deng <3! (((HUGS)))

January 13, 2017
  • 1
Christine Duszka
Christine Duszka

Wow, just wow!  I too love eschatology and have truly enjoyed this series. I normally read your teachings, as it helps me when I see it in writing, rather than hearing it. I am a former Catholic, but have been born again for 40 years.  I knew of some of the Roman Catholic Church history, but never realized to what extent the evil existed. I also understand what is happening today in the Catholic Church and the Pope calling for one world religion. Thank you for your insight and wisdom. I was very blessed. I realize I don't quite understand everything, however, I do know I'm ahead of so many others, because none of this is being taught in the church today.  Thank you again. Blessings to you for your obedience to the call of God in your life!  

January 12, 2017
  • 1
Debbie Bible
Debbie Bible

This has given me something to think about. Thank you.

January 12, 2017
  • 1
Cathy Webb
Cathy Webb

Thank you, Pastor Dion, for being obedient to the Lord's prompting. The movements working towards a one world religion are active. I read "Deceived On Purpose" over Christmas break. Definitely had me in prayer! One of my dearest, Christ-like friends is a devout Catholic. I'm so thankful that God is in charge and leading because it is impossible to not be confused and deceived without Jesus leading every day. Praise Him for the Bible and the Spirit of truth!

January 13, 2017
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Joseph Adams, Jr.
Joseph Adams, Jr.edited: January 14, 2017

Pastor Dion, I love the fact that you dispel the false teachings that are prevalent in our times. I have always had problems believing anything that is in conflict with the Word. I'm glad and relieved to know I am not as dumb or rebellious as I have thought myself to be in the past. I am in a step by step, line by line study of Revelation (Dallas Theological Seminary) and the instructor often refutes popular beliefs that are lies. Thanks for your dedication and determination to share the TRUTH. I am also thankful that you provide a transcript that can be read and reread as often as one desires. Thank You Jesus, Thank You Holy Spirit, Thank You Father, thank you Pastor-God's servant.

January 14, 2017
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Mark Duell
Mark Duell

Thank you Father for putting this on the heart of Pastor Dion. Thank you pastor Dion for being obedient. This just reaffirms what I've been reading and listening to for the past couple of years. You have helped me gain a better understanding of it all. There is a lot of history to dig through. And to try to explain it to a fellow believer that is so entrenched in the "Left Behind" theory is next to impossible for me. And I suppose if they truly want to know the truth they are going to have to do the research and reading for themselves or continue to be lead astray. I think my questioning of the "pre-trib" and escaping all hell on earth was the whole ISIS thing. I ask some of my brothers and sisters in church why they thought that we were better off than our brothers and sister in Iraq or over seas where they are being totured. They all felt that we would be raptured before that. ???? The church in America is falling farther and farther away while those in China and the Muslim world are drawing closer and closer to our Lord and Savior. May the Lord continue to prepare our hearts for His return. Thank you again for being obedient to our Lord and listening to the Holy Spirit speak to you. 

January 15, 2017
  • 1
Rosemary Marsh
Rosemary Marsh

Thank you Pastor Dion.For sharing this with us.It has helped me to understand so much more.It has taken me a while to take time out and just to listen to this.Thank you for your time and faithfulness and devotion.Thank you Heavenly Father for your obedient messenger in sharing your word and encouragement to stand firm in your word.Holy Spirit fill him anew and keep his heart on fire for God.We give thanks to you Almighty God for all that you have done and doing in our lives.

March 5, 2017