The Last Little Big Horn

Scripture: Daniel 7:8, Revelation 13:1-18
Date: 04/19/2008 
A recent papal visit to the United States adds more validity to the prophetic words of Daniel and Revelation and the little horn that will speak pompous words. The last two powers that will consolidate at the end of time will be the United States and the Vatican powers. The Roman Catholic Church is more than a church entity.
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Note: This is a verbatim transcript of the live broadcast. It is presented as spoken.

Good morning. It’s good to see each of you here. It’s a very interesting week that we’re having here in North America and I really say that to say this: what you see in your bulletin as the sermon title is going to seem out of sync because last night I became very impressed (I hope it was the Lord that impressed me.) to talk about something else. The message today that I feel impressed to share, I’ve titled “The Last Little Big Horn”. Now some of you know a little bit about history and you’ve heard of the Battle of Little Big Horn. That’s, of course, sometimes referred to as Custer’s Last Stand. It was probably the most complete victory of the Native Americans over the American military when they managed to lure Custer and his Seventh Cavalry far away from any post, got them far away from geographical protection, and then a confederacy of Indians under Sitting Bull came together and caught them completely by surprise, overwhelmed them with superior numbers and I don’t believe there was a survivor. One horse survived. Now you might wonder what in the world does Pastor Doug have on his mind? He’s going to preach about Custer’s last stand? No, really it’s a play on words. The little big horn. I was thinking about what’s been happening in the news today and I kept thinking about the little big horn. It really comes from a verse in the Bible. You didn’t know that Custer’s last stand is in the Bible. Turn in your Bibles to Daniel chapter 7, verse 8. In this prophecy of the ram and the goat, it tells us that the goat ends up sprouting four horns and from among one of those horns something happens here. “I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.” A little big horn. Well, that was my stab at it. Matter of fact, this is an important subject because this little horn does big things, and you find that this little horn that you read about here in Daniel chapter 7 that ends up being the last day persecuting power is the same as the first beast in Revelation chapter 13. Now it says in the book of Galatians chapter 4, verse 16, “Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?” Do you want me to tell you the truth, friends?

I just feel I have an obligation to talk to you about what’s been happening recently, more specifically with the papal visit. I think we are seeing a segment, a segment today, a brick today in the wall of fulfilled prophecy has been added. I probably would not be very faithful as a pastor if I did not address these things because I want to make sure you understand history and what’s going on and you can view these things through what I believe is a clear perspective. Daniel 7:25 tells us this little horn power will “speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out” or persecute “the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws…” I’ve got an amazing fact for you. You know the biggest country in the world today is what? If you have any doubts shop at Wal Mart and look at where it’s made. What’s the biggest country in the world? China is the biggest country. About 1.3 to1.4 billion. The Olympics will begin this year in China. Do you know there are more people in China now than there were in the entire world a hundred and fifty years ago? So that’s the biggest country. Do you know what the smallest country in the world is? The smallest country is the Vatican. Did you know the Vatican is an independent country? That’s right. In 1929 under the terms of the Lateran Treaty the Vatican City or the Holy See was established as an independent state with one hundred and nine acres within Rome. Less than one thousand people live in this little country that is governed by the Pope who has absolute executive and legislative and judicial powers. Furthermore the Vatican City has its own currency and postal system. They publish a daily newspaper, a monthly journal. They manage their own telephone and telegraph services. It even has a small railroad station and a radio station. The famous Swiss Guard serves as the police maintaining internal security and protection for the pope. Yet in spite of their tiny territory even China fears this little country. It is a little big horn.

Now this little horn that is spoken of by Daniel and in Revelation and by Paul and many others, many of the prophets identified as the Roman Catholic Church. Now stay with me. I don’t want to say anything to be offensive. I want to be faithful and to be true; I want to be kind. I know that many people are hearing this and going, where is he going and what is he saying? It’s interesting that when you consider Catholicism is really supposed to be a branch of the Christian religion. Why is it treated as a political power? Why is the pope treated as the head of state? Well, it’s because they knew when they appealed in 1929 to be treated as an independent country they would get the benefits of a country and be recognized that way. So basically they’re saying they’re the leaders of a country that is diffused all over the planet. So if you go to the United Nations you’ll see the pope there. The pope was met by President Bush at Andrews Air Force Base, typically somewhere that only heads of state go, and this is the first time that President Bush went to the airport to meet the arriving dignitary. That was a first. All of the fanfare and the attention was unprecedented. Matter of fact, it was the largest gathering that Bush has had in his entire presidency at the White House, even surpassing the visit of Queen Elizabeth II earlier this year, when the pope showed up.

Very interesting timing. It’s also interesting that they had a private audience with no advisors around them. Typically there are advisors around and others around recording this, but he wanted a private audience. The pope understands English even better than he speaks it, a very educated man. I would have loved to have heard what was said in that private conversation. You might be wondering, “Pastor Doug, why are you taking our Sabbath morning service to talk about what we can read in the headlines?” I want to give you a little different perspective on something. The way I read my Bible, the last two powers that are going to consolidate to implement final prophecy are Catholicism with its base in Europe and Rome and Protestantism with its headquarters in North America. There will e a joining of these two powers then under the influence of spiritualism. Through this three-fold union religious laws will be made that will compel people to worship a certain way. Now I don’t expect things to change radically this week. The pope flies home tomorrow. You probably will go shopping just like you always do and events will transpire very much like they do, but I want you to know history was made this week, and that little by little people are being transformed in their thinking and prepared for this final move that the Bible foretells is going to happen.

It’s interesting that when the pope went to the national stadium, brand new stadium, forty-six thousand people came to receive mass in Washington, D.C. our nation’s capital. As Karen and I were shaving and getting ready for church (I’m the one that did the shaving in case you’re wondering.) that we flipped on 3ABN, but it still had CNN on from the day before and couldn’t help but notice that today he was performing a mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. I’ve been there many times, and of course standing room only. A lot of things have been happening that are very calculated, carefully orchestrated to have significance and to change impressions and gain influence. This was all about gaining influence. Matter of fact, as the pope was preparing for his trip from Italy he said, “I am going on a mission to America.” What do missionaries do when they go to another country? I’m a missionary and when I go to another country I want to get converts. I want to change their thinking to what I believe is the truth. So there is no question about what his purpose was. He’s said that very openly. I respect him for that. Had this mass mass. It’s interesting that someone who was interviewing President Bush, you know at one time Bush, when he had had his first interview with Vladimir Putin, Bush said, “You know, I looked into his eyes and I saw the man’s soul.”

Someone asked President Bush, “Now that you’ve looked into Pope Benedict’s eyes, what do you see?” Immediately, without hesitation he said, “God.” That’s what he said. You’ll find that in the newspaper. Then what pastor has so much clout that the United Nations will gather to be addressed? Not only did Pope Benedict speak to address the United Nations General Assembly, then he met in another meeting following that to address the United Nations staff with a separate address. Would they do that for me? Don’t wait. Karen said she would come, or maybe she said they’d do it for her. But, no, I think that I don’t know that they’ve ever gotten together to hear Billy Graham, but the pope, the Holy See, if you ever look. I’ve been to the United Nations. I grew up right near the United Nations. There is a section on the floor where the different countries have their labels and you’ll see they’ve got Russia and they’ve got all the different countries their tabs there. There’s one section and it’s tagged “The Holy See” and there are ambassadors from the United States that go to the Vatican and there are ambassadors from the Vatican that go to the United States. Is this a church or what? Well, the Bible says it’s or what, but people are forgetting that. Or what means it is not just a church. It is a very powerful potent political dynamic in the world today. If you’ve ever read the book written by, I believe it’s Malachi Martin called Keys of this Blood where he talks about that there were very clear meetings between Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II and they recognized that in order to create some security in the world they were going to need to work together for the overthrow of communism which they successfully did. That all came out later, but the plans there are clear and they are long in their action.

It says this little horn that you find spoken of in Daniel will speak great words. I was thinking about it. Every picture I saw through the weekend… A lot of you, I want to thank you for the information I’m sharing. Some of our friends have been sending my pope updates. I saw a number of pictures on the news and in the Internet, and he’s not a big man, but what he says is very important because before he was the pope, better known as Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, he served as the head of the Catholic Church’s congregation for the doctrine of the faith from 1981 to 2005, over twenty years, defining the doctrine of the faith and he is very conservative in his theology believing in the former statements and the former positions of the church even before Vatican II. Newsweek Magazine said when Pope John II traveled people came to see Pope John Paul II, but they come to hear Pope Benedict XVI because he is speaking very concisely and very deliberately as a theologian. You should know some of the things that are said.

It tells us as you read there in Daniel and in Revelation 13, this little horn power will be guilty of blasphemy. There are a couple of biblical definitions for blasphemy. One of them you find in Luke 5:21, it says, claiming to forgive sins. Claiming to have the power to forgive sins is one of the definitions of blasphemy. You remember when Jesus said that he could forgive the sins of the paralytic that the Jewish scholars that were there said, “Who is this that speaketh blasphemy? Only God can forgive sins.” They were right. They just didn’t believe that Jesus was God. Only God can forgive sin. Secondly, another definition biblically for blasphemy is claiming the position of God. You find in John 10:33 and other places where Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I am.”

They took up stones to stone Him for blasphemy because “thou, being a man, makest thyself God.” So when a man puts himself in the place of God that is called blasphemy. Now listen to what the official teachings are that Pope Benedict XVI agrees with of what the position of the pope represents. Some of you have heard this quote before from Pope Leo XIII, “We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty.” That would fulfill that definition of blasphemy, but there’s more. 2 Thessalonians 2:4, Paul says here one of the definitions of this little horn power in the last days, it says, “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.” Now the temple of God today is not a building; the temple of God today is the people. What? Know ye not ye are the temple of God? Jesus said that His body is the temple. “Destroy this temple and in three days I’ll raise it up.”

He spoke of His body. You are the body of Christ. So when someone sits over the temple of God it means over the church of God. You got that? Showing himself that he is God, well I believe that the position of the pope by their description meets that definition and that ought to cause us a little edginess. For instance you read here, on April 30, 1922, Pope Pius XI said, “You know that I am the Holy Father and the representative of God on earth, the Vicar of Christ, which means that I am God on the earth.” These are the official declarations of the pope. I’ve got another one here from Dignities of the Priest, it says, “God Himself is to abide by the judgment of His priests…” God has to go along with what His priests say. “…and either not to pardon or to pardon, according as they refuse or give absolution.” Absolution means forgiveness. The priests decide who is going to be forgiven, who is not, and God must subscribe to that. “The sentence of the priest proceeds and God subscribes to it.” The priest gets to decide who is forgiven and who is not. God goes along with what the priest says. That gives an awful lot of power regarding people’s eternal destinies to men, and that power, that supposed power has been used to exploit and manipulate nations in the past. Again, from the book by Pope John Paul II, this a lot more recent. This is page 3.

It’s under the chapter “The Pope: A Scandal and a Mystery.” “Confronted with the pope, one must make a choice. The leader of the Catholic Church is defined y the faith as the Vicar of Jesus Christ, and is accepted as such by believers. The pope is considered the man on earth who represents the Son of God, who takes the place of the second person of the omnipotent God of the trinity.” You know, Pope John Paul II just seemed like such a lovely man. I think I told you several times, my father met him. He was just very impressed. Pope Benedict may be a lovely man. Keep in mind this is no attack on the individual. Here is something for you to think about. Do the Bible prophecies foretell that Babylon would persecute God’s people? The Bible prophecies tell that the king of Babylon would destroy the temple and would kill the people and burn the city. The prophecies told that. Nebuchadnezzar was the instrument in that, correct? How many of you think we might see Nebuchadnezzar in heaven? Think about it for a second. The last thing Nebuchadnezzar says in the Bible, he is extolling the God of heaven. The spirit of God came back to him and he repented of his pride.

He might be in the kingdom. You don’t know that. So do you understand what I’m saying? I’m not speaking against these individuals. What we’re talking about is systems of government that the Lord has foretold in His word would be instrumental in bringing about the final events of compelling everybody to either receive the Mark of the Beast or not be able to buy or sell or be killed. The other group of course is going to have the seal of God, and I hope you know what that is. It tells us that there’s going to be this confederacy. The first beast in Revelation 13 I believe is speaking about the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox churches would maybe be included in that with its principal center in Rome. It says the dragon gave him his seat, his power and great authority. The dragon at first was the Roman power ruled by the Caesars, pagan Rome. As pagan Rome began to crumble in its place came up Papal Rome. In case you didn’t know it, the reason that the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church seem so strange for Bible Christians is because the Roman Catholic Church is in reality the comingling of many pagan religions going all the way back to Babylon in Christianity.

So when you mix some truth with error, what do you have, truth or error? You still have error. When you mix a little bit of truth with deception, what do you have? You still have deception. So what happened is as the… Constantine was instrumental in this, Constantine the Great. He’s the one who first legalized Christianity with the edicts of Milan in 521 A.D. establishing Sunday as a day of worship, establishing Sunday as a day of worship among other things. And being a shrewd politician, he said, “Look, our kingdom is split. Christianity has become the vogue religion. They’re not hurting anybody. They’re a pretty passive people. Why don’t we legalize it?” He had just fought a battle in order to get the throne of Rome, and he said, “I need support in the kingdom.” So he legalized Christianity and to show how sincere he was, he ordered his army to march through the Tiber River and to be baptized. Well, can you order someone to be baptized? So a lot of these pagan soldiers that went down into the Tiber River dry pagans, they simply came up wet pagans. They said, “What do we do now?” They said, “You’re Christians now.” “Well, what do Christians believe?” And so they went running to the priests, and the priests had a real conundrum. The more conservative priests that were biblical said, “Look, you’ve got to get rid of your idols, you’ve got to stop all these pagan ceremonies and festivals.” Some of the others said, “Look, you know, we’re going to get a lot more pagans to join the church if we make a few compromises and meet them partway.” This is what happened. They took all their statues that were called Jupiter and Apollo and Zeus and Diana and they renamed them Peter, James, John and Mary. They started to develop a theology that embraced these statues.

The Christian leaders used to dress very humbly like the common people. It doesn’t say Jesus went around in any royal regalia, did He? Festooned with Gold. no, they didn’t even know where he was in the crowd because he dressed like everybody else. Peter, Paul, they didn’t wear all of these sacramental robes. Ah, but the pagan priests did. Gradually so many things that were in the pagan Roman and Greek cultures, the Christians began to adopt them and comingle them until pretty soon about five hundred years after Christ the Christian religion in Rome had become a milkshake of paganism and Christianity and it’s very much what you see today. Matter of fact, I hope it’s still in my Bible. Let me give you a quick example of what some of those things are that are just not biblical that found their way into the church. And again, I don’t mean to be unkind. I just want to be truthful about what the Bible really says. You can believe anything you want. In America you can be a Buddhist, you can be Islamic, you can be Krisna or you’re free. But if you’re going to say you’re a Bible Christian then we’re going to talk about it. I’ll tell you what the Bible says.

For instance, the Bible teaches we’re not to bow down to statues Exodus 20:4, 5. The Roman Catholic Church says you should bow down to statues. It’s not an ancient tradition, but it’s a medieval tradition. The Bible teaches that… How many of you have been to Catholic churches? I used to go to Catholic school where there are statues. Do you see people praying in front of the statues? They kneel in front of them. They cross themselves, they lay flowers, they burn candles. The Bible calls that idolatry. I have Catholic friends and they will say, “Well, we know that statue is not really Jesus, but it helps us think about Him. We know it’s not really Mary.” Buddhists are in the same boat. You ask a Buddhist when they’re praying for Buddha or some little Buddha in your Chinese restaurant you go to, do you think they really think that’s Buddha? They say, “Of course not. It just helps us think about him and to reverence him.” It’s called idolatry because it lowers your conception of who God really is when you fabricate him like some plastic figurine and put him on your dashboard with double-stick tape. That’s not God. It lowers your concept and he says, “You shall not even lift up your tool upon My altar because you’ll be tempted to try and make something look like me. I am too great for you to conceive of.” It’s called idolatry.

The Bible teaches that all have sinned except Jesus. Romans 3:10, Hebrews 4 and many other scriptures. The Roman Catholic Church teaches that Mary was sinless. That’s the immaculate conception. The Bible says that Jesus is the only mediator between man and God, 1 Timothy 2:5. The Roman Catholic Church teaches that Mary is a co-mediator with Christ. I’m just wondering, if you don’t mind showing your hands, how many of you either in your family or your personal background have a Catholic or Roman Catholic heritage? Let me see your hands. A good number of people. Okay, so you folks, I’m not hearing anyone disagree. You understand these things, and we love these people, don’t we? I think you’re going to see a whole lot of Roman Catholic people in the kingdom. Amen? No question about that. But biblically there are a lot of things happening that are not true in their teachings. What we’re talking about is the teachings of these institutions.

The Bible teaches that Christ offered His sacrifice for us on the cross once for all, Hebrews 7:27 and 28, Hebrews 10:10 and others. The Roman Catholic Church teaches that the priest sacrifices Christ on the altar every time he conducts a mass, which is what the pope is claiming he did today in St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The Bible teaches that all Christians are saints and priests, all Christians. You are a royal priesthood, Ephesians 1, 1 Peter 2:9. The Roman Catholic Church says that saints and priests are a special caste within the Christian community, the priesthood. The Bible teaches that all Christians should know they have eternal life. You can know that you have eternal life because you accept Christ and that gives you faith; that makes you happy. The Roman Catholic Church says that all Christians cannot and should not know they have eternal life. You can just read these things in your Catholic Catechism. Well, I’m not assuming you all have a Catholic Catechism, but you can buy one, or just get it at the library if you want to know. The Bible teaches that we should call no religious leader father. Did you know that? Jesus said that in Matthew 23:9.

Of course the Roman Catholic Church teaches we may call the priests and pope father. The pope has been called all kinds of things, your holiness, glorious father, Holy Father. I don’t even like it when they call me Reverend Batchelor. The Bible says, “Holy and Reverend is his name.” That’s why we call our pastors “pastor”. If I met the pope I wouldn’t call him your holiness. I’d call him pastor or Benny. I’m sorry. That wasn’t nice. I’m sorry. But you know why I did that? I’ll tell you why I said that. I didn’t want to be disrespectful. I just did that to sort of compensate because people really think he’s extra-human. He’s a human. When I talk to other pastors if I’m in front of people, I’ll talk to Pastor Allred, I’ll call him Pastor Allred or Pastor Mike. When we’re together, do you think I call him pastor? No, I call him Steve, I call him Mike, call him Harold because we’re friends, we’re equals, right? Alright, let’s go on. But you shouldn’t deify a man. God is God; no man is God. The Bible teaches not to pray in vain repetition; that’s Matthew 6:7 and others. The Roman Catholic Church says to pray the Lord’s Prayer or Hail Mary or others in repetition, counting beads. The Bible teaches us to confess our sins to God. I understand they had people lined up twenty deep in the Washington Stadium doing confession.

They had kind of this, this like a big cafeteria of confessions going on to the priests that were all appointed for that purpose. The Roman Catholic Church says you must confess your sins to the priest for forgiveness. I could go on and on, but the teaching of purgatory, limbo, prayers for the dead are nowhere in scripture, but clearly relics of paganism. The words of Jesus to the Pharisee apply well today when we nullify the word of God with manmade tradition, Matthew 15:16. Tradition sometimes contradicts tradition. For example, the Roman Church teaches that the pope is the head of the church, the bishop overall, but Pope Gregory the Great from 540 to 604 A.D. he was the last of the four original doctors of the church and became known as St. Gregory, this is a pope. At the end of the ancient church period, he said, listen. Pope Gregory said, “I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself a universal bishop or desires to be called this in his pride is a forerunner of antichrist.” He rejected that they were calling the popes the universal bishop of the church. He said that is antichrist in its nature. A pope said that. That’s written in their history.

In the “Index of Forbidden Books” of Pope Pius IV in 1559 he said, “Experience has taught us that the reading of the Bible in the vernacular permitted generally without discrimination will cause more damage than advantage because of the boldness of man.” In other words, if you read the Bible in your own language, it’s dangerous. The priests need to read it and interpret what it says to you. It’ll cause more damage, they say. “The judgments of bishops and inquisitors are to serve as guides in this matter. If someone is found in possession of one of these Bibles written without permission from the priest or inquisitor their sins shall not be forgiven unless they turn in the manuscript and confess.” Now we forget what the history is, and what is taught.

Right now China is in the news a lot because with their human rights abuses, with their forbidding certain freedoms, forbidding freedom of religion, folks are saying, “How can we go and endorse the country and support the country?” So some are protesting and boycotting because they say they’ve got problems here we need to recognize, but when the pope comes, we get amnesia about what history is. I think that Americans forget that this country was to a great degree founded by people who were fleeing from the religious persecution in Europe. So when the prime representative of that persecution shows up and is treated with all of the fanfare of a beloved head of state, people have amnesia about what the history is. Anyway. There is much more I can share here. I’ll post this maybe at the Central Church website if you’d like to read that later. I want to go on with a few other thoughts here as I’m looking at the clock.

Part of the last day scenario is Protestants that came out of Catholicism are being wooed back in. While the pope was here, as recently as yesterday he met with religious leaders at an ecumenical prayer meeting. Two hundred and fifty religious leaders from orthodox, protestant, and evangelical churches, and there you see Pat Robertson and by the way this was yesterday. I should read you a few quotes by him in just a minute. In addition to that, history was made yesterday when Pope Benedict went for the first time to an American synagogue and met with the leader of the synagogue, a rabbi, and they talked about the things they hold in common and how they should build bridges and some of that political mumbo-jumbo that they like to say about how much they love each other. The pope gave him a gift and he gave the pope a seder dish because do you know what today is? Passover. Very interesting timing for this visit, very interesting timing.

I also thought it was interesting that the rabbi was a survivor of the holocaust and he’s meeting with a German pope. It’s interesting. That’s what they said. I thought that was interesting. In connection with this on April 16th, two days ago, on the pope’s birthday, and I understand it was also the 200th anniversary of Catholicism in North America. Now they said that. I don’t know why they said that because there have been Catholic Jesuits since the 1500’s, but maybe that’s some formal recognition of the church or they were fully established. I’m not sure, but they claim that this weekend represents the 200th anniversary. Another significant date, on April 16th Pope Benedict, on his birthday he met with American Catholic bishops and leaders. So these are leaders of the Catholic Church from America. Listen very carefully, friends. They met in Washington, D.C. at the national shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. They met in a church, a cathedral dedicated to Mary and her worship, and her sinlessness in our nation’s capital. Chicago cardinal Francis E. George addressed the pope on behalf of American Catholic leaders. He listed five priorities for their common attention. These are the priorities for their attention over the next several years. So the pope is sitting there on a special chair and the catholic leader says, “And here’s what our mission is for the next few years for the church in North America…” This is all public. This was in the newspapers. I don’t know if you caught this.

Among them was strengthening of marriage and the family. Are we all in favor of that? Yeah. Protecting life and the dignity of the human person at every stage. The every stage means even the unborn and the aged. Fostering vocations to ordain priesthood and a consecrated life, and profiting from the cultural diversity in the church here, and they were saying principally among Hispanic Catholics. Here is the one that I really thought was interesting. Listen carefully. “Handing on the faith in the context” our whole faith, these things we just mentioned should be handed on in the context “of the sacramental practice and the observance of Sunday worship.” Now what they’re saying is the way to arrive at these other things, to save our society, to save our families, to save our culture, it must be done in the context of the sacrament of the sacredness of Sunday worship. That sounds to me like a fulfillment of prophecy.

That’s 2008 Catholic News Service, US… You can document all of these things. I did my best to research everything. I hope I’m being as fair and accurate as I can be. So that was all done in the context of meeting with protestant leaders and evangelical leaders and I think I told you a moment ago among them was Pat Robertson. Here is a book that Pat Robertson wrote a couple of years ago if you want to know where he stands on Sunday. This is a book called The New World Order. Here’s one quote in there from page 236 I’d like to share with you. “The next obligation that a citizen of God’s world order owes to himself, ‘Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy’ is a command for the personal benefit of each citizen. Higher civilizations rise when people can rest and draw inspiration from God. Laws in America that mandate a day of rest” (He’s referring earlier to Sunday laws.) “have been nullified as a violation of church and state. …an outright insult to God and His plan.

Only those policies that can be shown to have a clearly secular purpose are recognized.” He’s basically saying I think we’ve got one more page here. “It is not the duty of any particular group of people, it is the duty of a government of its people to proclaim a day as a Sabbath to be universally observed through the length and breadth of the land. Sunday as the Lord’s day… If we as a nation would escape the doldrums of increased trouble as God’s hand rests heavily upon us, His people opposition to Sunday nationally declared must cease.” In other words, he’s saying that the government must enforce this. One thing all of those who were gathered together there yesterday agreed upon, and it’s interesting that even the Jews who met with them… You often wonder where do the Jews fit into this. They’re building bridges; they’re healing the wound.

You know protestants right now have amnesia. Protestants in North America are suffering from an identity crisis. If you know your history you remember that when they were building the Washington monument… It took them a long time because they had several setbacks including the Civil War, but in the 1850’s, early 1850’s, the pope sent a marble stone for them to incorporate in the building as a goodwill gesture. Protestants in North America were so outraged by this that they stole it away from where it was stored and threw it in the Potomac River. Attitudes have changed, but their memory was a little fresher back then. Let me read a few quotes to you from, if you’re a protestant, Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, those are all protestant churches.

Seventh-day Adventist, protestant church. Let me read what the protestant reformers believed. Now here are some statements, stay with me, I’m going to read several statements that may seem strong. I’m quoting from protestant reformers from the great reformation, what their beliefs were about the little big horn. Here is Martin Luther, 1483-1546, “Luther proved by the revelations of Daniel and St. John,” speaking of Revelation, “by the epistles of St. Peter and St. Jude that the reign of antichrist predicted and described in the Bible was the papacy” or what we call the Roman Catholic Church.

Move on to John Calvin, one of the great leaders of the Presbyterian and very influential in the Baptist Church. “Some persons think us too severe and censurous when we call the Roman pontiff antichrist.” By the way, he once was part of the Roman Catholic Church as was Luther. “But those who are of this opinion do not consider that they bring the same charge of presumption against Paul himself after whom we speak and whose language we adopt. I shall briefly show that Paul’s words in 2 Thessalonians 2” what I just quoted you “are not capable of any other interpretation than that which applies them to the papacy.” He sits in the temple of God showing himself that he is God. That’s what Calvin is talking about here.

Let’s go on to the next one then. John Knox, Scottish Presbyterian, “Knox sought to counteract that tyranny which the pope himself has for so many ages exercised over the church. As with Luther he firmly concluded that the papacy was the very antichrist and son of perdition of whom Paul speaks.” Again, I’m not trying to attack anyone. I’m just telling you this is what the history is.

Thomas Cranmer who ended up being martyred for his faith, “Whereof it followeth Rome to be the seat of antichrist and the pope to be the very antichrist himself.” I could prove the same by many other scriptures, old writers and strong reason. I’m just going through a list of them.

If you’re an American you know who Roger Williams is, one of the great founders of our country. Matter of fact, he founded the principal of religious freedom that we have. That’s why he named Providence, Rhode Island the way he did. Roger Williams was the first Baptist pastor in America. “Pastor Williams spoke of the pope as the pretended Vicar of Christ on earth who sits as God over the temple of God…” They all interpreted these scriptures that way. “…exalting himself not only above all that is called God but over the souls and consciences of all his vassals, yea over the spirit of Christ, over the Holy Spirit, yea over God Himself.” He spoke very strongly about what’s going on here.

Cotton Mather who was a great reformer in North America, someone told me he had the whole New Testament memorized. “The oracles of God foretold the rising of an antichrist in the Christian church and in the pope of Rome all of the characteristics of that antichrist are so marvelously answered that if any who would read the scriptures do not see it there is a marvelous blindness upon them.” Especially if you read not only Daniel chapter 7, and if you read Revelation 17, if we have time I may even go there with you today.

Let’s go to the next one is John Wesley founder of the Methodist Church. We sang a song during Sabbath School written by his brother Charles. “Speaking of the papacy, John Wesley wrote, he is in an emphatical sense the man of sin as he increases all manner of sin above measure and is too properly styled for the sons of perdition as he has caused the death of numberless multitudes both of his oppressors and followers. He is it that exalteth himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped claiming the highest power and the highest honor, claiming the prerogatives which belong to God alone.” I’ve got more I think from Wesley here. This is from John Wesley’s Commentary on the Bible. You can just read this online. “That is Europe, this beast is the Roman Papacy as it came to a point six hundred years since stands now and will for some time longer. To this and no other power of earth agrees the whole text and every part of it in every point.” All of the reformers said very clearly… Oh, I’m not done yet. “This beast is a spiritually secular power opposite to the kingdom of Christ, a power not merely spiritual or ecclesiastical, not merely secular or political, but a mixture of both.”

In the book Great Cloud of Witnesses... Here is another quote. “Wycliffe first English Bible, Tyndale another translator, Luther, Calvin, Cranmer, in the 17th Century Bunyan (John Bunyan wrote Pilgrim’s Progress), the translators of the King James Bible and the men who published the Westminster and Baptist Confessions of Faith, Sir Isaac Newton, Wesley, Whitfield, Jonathan Edwards, and more recently Charles Spurgeon, Bishop J. C. Rile and Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones, these men among countless others all saw the office of the papacy as antichrist.” So I’m not teaching you something new today. I just sometimes feel like I’m one of the only ones who is teaching something very old. You just don’t hear people it say anymore because there is a blindness that’s come upon Israel as Paul said. These things are happening under our nose and just hardly a ripple going through the protestant church.

I thought it was interesting… Let me read something to you. In 2007, July 16, that’s not that long ago, not even a year ago, there was a sixteen page document that was released for the orthodox churches coming from the pen of the pope. You remember he was the overseer of their doctrine of the faith. It says, “The orthodox churches” meaning the Greek Orthodox, the Russian Orthodox, the Orthodox Church, the middle-eastern orthodox churches “are suffering from a wound....” They use the word wound. “…because they do not worship the pope.” Now you know what the big argument is that they’ve been trying to reconcile with the Lutherans and they’ve just about done that, with the Church of England, with the orthodox churches, is will they acknowledge the supremacy of the pope?

When the pope comes in his jet with his regalia and all of the attention of the head of state, he is trying to impress the other churches that he deserves that prestige. Notice, I’m going to read on here. What really caught people’s attention was the further description of protestants, not just the other orthodox churches, saying “their wound” the wound of the protestants “is even more profound.” The document went on to say that “it is difficult to see how the title of a church could possibly be attributed to protestants.” They can’t even be titled a church. “It also affirms that the Roman Catholic Church is the only true church on earth. It further set off a firestorm of criticism among protestants and other Christian denominations because the document said that “they were not true churches, but merely ecclesial communities and therefore they had no means of salvation.” Do you want a loose translation of that? They cannot be saved outside of us.

At least we’ve got the courtesy to say, yes, there will be Catholics in heaven. There will be Greek orthodox and Russian orthodox, and Baptists and all people who are not part of my church, they’re going to be in heaven, but the Catholic Church says their means of salvation is lost. So all of the smiles and the niceties that you see, nothing has changed as recently as last year in what their beliefs are.

I want to read something. Oh, boy, my clock is going fast. Let me read something to you from a book written by a little old lady with just about three grades of education. This is in a book called Great Controversy. You ever heard of that? I recommend it. There is a chapter in here called “Liberty of Conscience Threatened”. Different versions of the book use different chapter titles. I think you’re going to find this in about page 562 to 563. “Romanism is now regarded by protestants with far greater favor than in former years. There is an increasing indifference concerning the doctrines that separate the reform churches from the papal hierarchy. The opinion is gaining ground that, after all, we don’t differ so widely upon vital points as had been supposed and that a little concession on our part will bring us into better understanding with Rome.”

Let’s make little concessions. But what they don’t know is happening is over the last hundred years we’ve been making all of the concessions. So if you’ve got two people that are separated by doctrinal differences and you say, “Let’s make some concessions and come together,” and you’ve got one group that keeps making all of the concessions… protestants will be foremost in stretching their hand across the abyss to clasp the hand of Romanism. The one who is making the concessions is foremost. We don’t differ so widely. A few concessions will bring us into a better understanding with Rome. Listen to this, “The time was when protestants placed such a high value on liberty of conscience which had been so dearly purchased they taught their children to arbor, to shun popery. They held that to remain at peace with Rome is to be disloyal to God.” Making peace with Rome is disloyalty to God when someone claims the prerogatives of Christ, that’s blasphemy. Christians should not be indifferent or comfortable with that. If you love Jesus and someone is claiming to be His representative and the Bible calls him a son of perdition and antichrist, you shouldn’t be comfortable.

You know when I first heard the pope was coming… I’ve got friends they get so wound up over everything that I like to stay balanced. Every time the pope sneezes they send me a letter. I’m not like that. I want you to understand that. So I just thought I’ll take this all in stride, and the more I watched things happening over the course of the weekend I felt very disturbed. The Holy Spirit was saying, Doug, you’ve got to say… You’re watching prophecy being fulfilled and you’re being mesmerized like everybody else to just shrug it off, and then I picked up this book and started reading. Remember, Pastors, I read this to you when we met Friday.

I said, “I’m getting stirred that things are happening.” “The defenders of popery declare she’s been maligned and the protestant world is inclined to accept this.” She has just been misunderstood. “Many urge it’s unjust to judge the Roman Church of today by the abominations and absurdities that marked her reign during the centuries of ignorance and darkness.” I hear these same arguments, “Oh, that was back then. Everybody was mixed up back then.” But they haven’t changed their doctrines. “Have these persons forgotten their claim of infallibility for eight hundred years put forth by the haughty power? The papal church will never relinquish their claim to infallibility.

All that she’s done in her persecution of those who reject her dogmas she holds to be right and would she not repeat the same act should she have the same opportunity? Let the restraints now imposed by secular governments be removed and Rome will be reinstated to her former power. There would be a speedy revival of her tyranny and persecution.” I don’t have time to read all of this, but “Romanism as a system is no more in harmony with the gospel of Christ now than in any other former period of history.

The protestant churches are in great darkness or they would discern the signs of the times.” Listen, “The Roman church is far-reaching in her plans and modes” very patient. “She is employing every device to extend her influence and increase her power in preparation” all of this is in preparation “for a fierce and determined final conflict to regain control of the world.” That’s what Malachi Martin said in his book Keys of this Blood.

He said there is a battle for control of the world, and I’ll tell you, not only is the pope working right now aggressively to try to win protestants and Jews, they understand that Islam is something that he needs to deal with and he knows that unless he can consolidate the Christian world, they’re not going to be able to stand against the explosion of the Islamic religion. And the pope says they’re looking for a spiritual leader in the Christian world right now to deal with the fanatical Islamic extremism, and he is coming here to say, “I am going to be your hope for leadership. We need to pull together.” I just made a prediction. Did you hear me? Did you catch that? I think that’s what’s happening here. Because he realizes the Islamic and Muslim religion is exploding in Europe and the old strongholds of Catholicism are greatly threatened now in France and Spain and other places. If you know your history, you’ll know that lots of battles happened during the crusades with that same power. They need the support of protestants to win that battle and protestants are beginning to think, “We need help too in our war against terror.” I kind of see a trend here.

“Protestants have tampered with and patronized popery. They have made compromises and concessions which papists themselves are surprised to see and they fail to understand. Men are closing their eyes to the real character of Romanism and the dangers to be apprehended from her supremacy. The people of our land need to be aroused to resist the advances of this most dangerous foe to civil and religious liberty.” That’s what I’m talking about today, friends. I’m talking about somebody who comes to our shores that claims to be both the leader of the church and the leader of a government. The reason America was founded is we were a beast that came up with two horns like a lamb. Do you know what those two lamblike horns were? Freedom of government, we have a government without a king, we get to choose our king and he’d better behave well or we’re going to choose another one. So it gives us a freedom. There’s accountability. We have freedom of religion.

Freedom of government, freedom of religion. When someone comes to our shores and they deny that, and they say, “I am a sovereign over my own country. I am the king. I am the religious leader. I am the government leader,” and we start to ally with that, we’re moving backwards from our liberties. Don’t you remember what the catholic church did during the inquisition? They said, “This is what you believe, and if you don’t believe what we tell you to believe, we’re sending armies. We have the right to take your property; we have the right to take your life.” They haven’t renounced that. They make very veiled apologies, but you read them very carefully, they don’t really apologize.

Well, friends, I think we need to be aware of what’s happening. Things aren’t going to change radically next week, but something happened. This week was very interesting historically. Passover, two hundred year anniversary, an election year in America, no accident; this was a very calculated trip to impress any future power in America who is in charge. Now we live in a day where not too many people cut down trees with axes anymore. Any of you ever remember when you used to use an axe to cut down a tree? I can do it. You’d be impressed. Pastor Doug can hit a fly on a block of wood with an axe. I can. I might have to swing fifty times, but eventually I’ll get him, and the fly has to be dead. No, I’m pretty good, and I’ve cut down trees with an axe. If you’ve ever felled a big tree with an axe, you know that you’ve got to watch it because you get your back-cut and then you start your undercut and you chip away. The chips fly, if you’ve got a sharp axe.

They fly out one at a time and every swing as you start to get a big bite in that undercut, you’ve got to be listening because you don’t know which chip it’s going to be where all of a sudden you’re going to hear a creak and a crack and you’d better run because those widow-makers come out of the tree and they’ll take your life, those branches fall down. And so with those last few swings, a little chip here, little chip there and eventually the tree goes down. Well, in case you didn’t know it, we lost a big chip this week and it’s happening chip by chip, swing by swing, things are changing and we’re at risk of losing our freedoms, friends.

I thought it would be appropriate for us to… I’d challenge you to read the book Great Controversy especially that chapter if you haven’t. I just read a few small excerpts. We’re forgetting our heritage and where we started. One more thing. It’s also interesting that at one point there were only Protestants on the supreme court. Now the Catholics on the Supreme Court outnumber the Protestants. Chip, chip, chip… It’s happening little by little things are going to change. Some national or international disaster, economic, natural disaster, something is going to trigger it and we’re all going to be looking for a “daddy” to run to, someone to help save us, a spiritual leader. You watch how quickly… Who do you think people are going to turn to like a compass needle? Especially when now the flood of immigration, the denominational makeup of our country is changing. It’s happening before your very eyes, friends. We need to wake up. I hope that your personal relationship with Jesus, because no matter what you know about prophecy, if you don’t know Jesus, it won’t save you. You’ve got to have a personal relationship with Christ and appreciate salvation by grace that He offers.

Why don’t we turn in our hymnals to our closing hymn, by Martin Luther of all things, “A Mighty Fortress” 506.

A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing; our helper he amid the flood of mortal ills prevaling. For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe; his craft and power are great, and armed with cruel hate, on earth is not his equal.

Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing, were not the right man on our side, the man of God's own choosing. Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is he; Lord Sabbaoth, his name, from age to age the same, and he must win the battle.

And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God hath willed his truth to triumph through us. The Prince of darkness grim, we tremble not for him; his rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure; one little word shall fell him.

Before we sing the last verse… I like those last words. I didn’t even know Martin Luther alluded to the falling of a tree at the end “one little word”. Have you ever wondered what it might look like in the last days? What would it feel like for a church that has all the truth to have prophecy transpire under their nose and not arouse and recognize it? Probably felt something like the Jews back in Jesus’ day who had all the scriptures about the first coming of the Messiah, came and went right under their noses and they didn’t know it. It probably feels something like you’re feeling right now, to have prophecy being fulfilled in your very hearing, as you sit in church this day, and to think it’s just like every other day. I think the Lord is wanting us to wake up and realize time is short. If you’re looking for a good time to repent, this is a good time. If you’re looking for a good day to say, I surrender all to Jesus, this is a good day.

If it’s not the grace of the Lord that wins your heart then use your brain and look at the prophecies and say, “It’s the truth, and I need to come just as I am.” These things are happening. Final events and final movements will be rapid ones, friends. Before we sing the last words in this great hymn written by a great protestant, I’d like to ask if there are some here who realize that maybe their lives aren’t where they should be and they want to surrender all to Jesus and make a decision, today is a good day to say, “Lord, I want to be ready to take a stand for your truth, for your word and for Jesus.” Come. We’ll have prayer together as we sing the forth verse. Come forward.

That word above all earthly powers, no thanks to them, abideth; the Spirit and the gifts are ours, thru him who with us sideth. Let goods and kindred go, this mortal life also; the body they may kill; God's truth abideth still; his kingdom is forever.

Amen. You know I know we just sang it, but I’m going to read it. Almost a week doesn’t go by when Mrs. Batchelor and I, we walked and talked yesterday, we just walked around the block holding hands. We were thinking about the last days and she said, “Doug, we’re going to have to go somewhere else. Everybody knows where you are.” I joked with her, and said, “Well, I’ll probably be in jail, dear, and it won’t matter.” So when I read these words, friends, you know, when I stand up and I preach like this and it’s streaming live on the Internet and it’s recorded for TV and I read where it says, “Let goods and kindred go…” you may lose your family, you may lose your possessions, “this mortal life also…” you may lose your life. Did Martin Luther know what he was singing about? Are you willing to really lose everything for the truth? You know I think it’s interesting, I don’t want to belabor this, friends, but just want you to think. Had a lot in the news today about federal agents storming a compound of religious people. I’m not taking a position on what was happening there or not happening there, but it ought to trouble us.

Everything from Waco, Texas to any religious group because it’s getting easier and easier for our culture to say, “Well, there’s all these fanatical religions doing strange things,” and it may be justified, but it ought to trouble us a little bit because someday we’re going to be on the other end of that. I’ll tell you right now. So I’d be praying for those folks because someday someone is going to think what we believe is dangerous. Do you love it, do you believe it so much that you’re willing to speak up? Another reason I shared this message today is we’re running out of time. Right now we have freedom to preach; we’ve got freedom to teach. You won’t always have that. We need to make hay while the sun shines because the time is coming, the night is coming when no one is going to be able to work, friends. Amen? Let’s pray that God will really fill our hearts with His Spirit and we can be totally surrendered and take a stand for the truth. Do it lovingly, do it with tact and wisdom, but we’ve got to speak up.

Father in heaven, Lord, we do believe that today we are living in an ominous time when prophecy is being fulfilled. We see our beloved country rolling out the red carpet for one who at one time was recognized as the very antichrist. This is unsettling, Lord. We realize what we believe and preach which was once the foundation of all protestant churches is now becoming unpopular. Even in our own church it’s sometimes unpopular. I pray, Lord, that we’ll not be intimidated, but we will speak up for the truth realizing the power of Your word. I pray that You’ll be with each person. Help us to realize the times in which we live, that Jesus is coming soon, and that we will be resolved both with our minds because it’s true and with our hearts because we love You to be fully surrendered. Bless us, Lord. We pray You’ll prolong the freedom and the tranquility we have in our country to preach the truth while people are willing to listen, while we have this freedom. Be with us as we go from this place to live the truth. We thank You and we ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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