Urgent Prophecy Alert!

An Amazing Fact: On January 14, Pope Francis recorded an unprecedented video message on his friend’s smartphone to be played before a large convocation of charismatic church leaders, inviting them to embrace the Roman Church and to end the separation between Protestants and Catholics.

By now, I expect you have either seen or heard about the surprising viral video of Pope Francis personally appealing for unity with Protestants, presented at a Kenneth Copeland conference of charismatic leaders in Texas.

But almost as important as the pope’s message is the bold preamble given by his longtime friend and emissary, Tony Palmer. This Anglican bishop, a self-proclaimed Pentecostal, used his cellphone to capture a persuasive video message from the former Jesuit priest.

While introducing the pope’s remarks, Palmer seemed to frame himself as a type of Elijah, sent to “turn the hearts of the sons to the fathers.” At least three times he declared, “The protest is over,” speaking of the Protestant Reformation, and even added, “Maybe we are all Catholics now.”

Palmer went on to say we should not be distracted by doctrinal differences, that “God will sort out all the doctrine when we get [to heaven]” and that “diversity is divine but division is diabolical.” It makes me wonder whether, someday soon, those who do not submit to this call for unity will be accused of being “diabolical.”

The Pope’s Message
After Palmer’s very direct comments, the auditorium lights dimmed and the pope’s video message was played. The normally high-spirited Pentecostal audience was thunderstruck with silence as they realized they were watching a personal video message from the supreme leader of the Catholic Church.

Here are some highlights from the pope’s message …

  • He said the sins that separated Protestants and Catholics were due to “misunderstandings” throughout history.
  • He drew an analogy of Joseph’s hungry brothers coming to Egypt and being reconciled to their misunderstood sibling.
  • He said the miracle of unity had already begun and would be completed.

Believe me when I say that the authentic feel of this disarming presentation was very effective!

Why this urgent plea?
This is not the first time the Catholic Church has made overtures for their “separated Protestant brethren” to return to the “true fold.” Past popes have typically embedded vague messages of unity in pontifical letters and speeches. However, this was so direct, winsome, and personal, it took everyone by surprise.

There are many probable reasons for the pope’s candid appeal for unity, and I sense some are as much political as spiritual.

In recent years, the Catholic Church has been rocked by bad press: a financial scandal, mounting litigation over pedophile priests, a mysterious murder in the Vatican, and an unprecedented resignation of a living pope.

Now put these challenges together with the fact that Islam and secular atheism are spreading across Europe, and today, many Catholic churches there are virtually empty. Yet at the same time, Charismatic churches are growing in Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia. And remember, the headquarters, programming, and funding for most of these evangelical churches come out of North America.

So is it any wonder that the pope would reach out to charismatic leaders in America? The Catholic Church can certainly read the handwriting on the wall. To survive in this new millennium, they will need to build a formidable alliance with other Christian denominations.

The Beast Has Not Changed
Yet whatever the cause for the pope’s recent appeal, do not think for a moment that this plea for unity means the Roman Church is ready to renounce her unbiblical beliefs or to surrender what she deems as her rightful authority.

More than 100 years ago, Ellen White foretold this very scenario …

“Romanism is now regarded by Protestants with far greater favor than in former years. … [As] the papists are taking a conciliatory course in order to gain influence, there is an increasing indifference concerning the doctrines that separate the reformed churches from the papal hierarchy; the opinion is gaining ground that, after all, we do not differ so widely upon vital points as has been supposed, and that a little concession on our part will bring us into a better understanding with Rome. The time was when Protestants placed a high value upon the liberty of conscience. … But how widely different are the sentiments now expressed” (The Great Controversy, p. 563).

I’m deeply concerned that in our age of information overload, by the time you read this letter, other headlines will have crowded the significance of this important event from the minds of most Christians. We can’t let that happen! “What I say to you, I say to all: Watch!” (Mark 13:37).

“The Protestant churches are in great darkness, or they would discern the signs of the times. The Roman Church … is employing every device to extend her influence and increase her power in preparation for a fierce and determined conflict to regain control of the world … and to undo all that Protestantism has done” (The Great Controversy, p. 563).

An Image to the Beast
These overtures for unity are happening all around us, and they seem to be warmly received by most Protestants. Step by step, American evangelicals are sacrificing doctrinal truth and making an image to the beast.

The enthusiastic response from the audience to the pope’s message should not be dismissed. It culminated in a crescendo of clapping and “praying in tongues.” Then Kenneth Copeland, who is, coincidentally, the same age as Pope Francis (77), heartily embraced the bishop. It seemed to me like a perfect storm—apostate Protestantism, Spiritualism, and Catholicism uniting!

“When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with Spiritualism [the charismatic movement?] … then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near” (Christian Service, pp. 160, 161).

While I don’t think this event represents a “sky is falling” scenario, it definitely is a significant prophetic step. It should wake us up! At times the wheel of prophecy can seem to turn slowly, but it never jumps off track. So I urge you to be fully surrendered to Christ and willing to be used in His service. Let’s be diligent to work while it is day, for “the night is coming when no one can work” (John 9:4).

A Door of Opportunity
This is why the mission of Amazing Facts is so crucial at this very moment. People everywhere are asking questions about the Bible and prophecy. We can’t neglect this opportunity to reveal God’s truth to a world being hypnotized by the beast. And we now have a powerful plan that will make a lasting difference.

Amazing Facts is now preparing a vital new evangelistic series called The Panorama of Prophecy, a complete array of 24 Bible presentations covering the high points of prophecy and the gospel. In a loving yet bold way, I will present the present truth of prophecy. Not only will these programs air on national television, they will make for a powerful new DVD sharing series and lesson studies that you can use for sharing the gospel with your friends. The timing is crucial!

To record and edit these 24 new prophecy programs, to prepare the lessons, and to package them will require about $250,000. I know this might seem like a lot, but over the past 15 years, our Millennium of Prophecy and Prophecy Code programs have changed literally tens of thousands of lives with the everlasting gospel. With a fresh presentation and the latest technology, we believe this new series will have an even greater impact. Each soul we reach because of your support is well worth it!

As always, we are stepping out in faith because time is so short. I trust that God will supply much-needed funds through His children to continue this important work of global evangelism. So can I ask you again to please join me in sharing His message of warning and love?

Have you ever wondered what the last days would look like—and how it would feel to have the final prophecies unfolding around you? Might I suggest, this is how it looks and feels!

Let’s meet this exciting challenge while we still can!

Your friend in these last days,

Doug Batchelor
President, Amazing Facts

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