Brent Creighton © Copyright 2000. I the computer user hereby acknowledge that I will not reproduce this document either for personal use or for resale. By copying this document, "The Revelation Testament : The Beast Through the Twenty-fifth Century," I acknowledge that Brent Creighton has granted me a limited right or license to obtain one copy for my personal use. All other rights are reserved. No rights for redistribution are granted. Links to this web page are welcome. The reader will need about 176 pages in a printer to print this document with a default font size of 12 points. Scriptural references are from the King James Version.

The words herein are written for all who are willing to search for the truth. Some who speak for the Lord without guile, and are not scared of a little logic - others who wanted to believe, but became disillusioned because none of the churches offered the truth. I have always sought the truth from whatever source I found it, a lot of which was outside the Scriptures. I made it a point of my life to not fear, for fear can stop us from searching earnestly for the truth. So I have not feared any idea, but have earnestly sought all sides for the truth. Yes, that meant I had to fight doubts, but I forged on by viewing them as an opportunity to learn and understand. I have striven to live my life by the admonition of Paul: "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." Philippians 4:8.

I did not start with the intent of writing the words herein. When I was a youth, I prayed for happiness, and came to realize that happiness can only be found in the love taught by our Lord Jesus (Leviticus 19:18,34; Matthew 22:39), but I did not understand the atonement as taught by the churches. If God is omnipotent, why does He need a Savior to come to the earth and die for us? My prayers brought a knowledge of the presence of God. I did make a personal covenant with my Father in heaven. I prayed for a wife who would truly love me - not for money nor power, but because she would see in me, what I see in her. I prayed for healthy children, I wanted so desperately, but would not think to allow myself. These are the things I prayed for - not money, nor power, nor fame. The Lord Jesus did eventually answer these prayers, but not without trial. My prayers seemed unanswered, and I grew more distant from our Lord. I had to choose love over all sorts of worldly fears Satan uses to govern our lives. So I did not set out to write the things herein, but the course of my life did lead me in my search for truth. For where much is given, much is required. Luke 12:48.

Chapter 1

If you desire to "stick to the gospel," open your Bible and pray with Jesus as he did right before his crucifixion in his great intercessory prayer in John 17.
17:1... Father, the hour is come...
17:3 and in this is life eternal that they might know thee the only true God,
and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.
17:4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which
thou gavest me to do.
17:11... Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me,
that they may be one, as we are.
17:14 I have given them thy words; and the world hath hated them, because they
are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
17:20 ...neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe
on me through their word.
17:21 That they all may be one; as thou Father art in me, and I in
, that they also may be one in us
: that the world may
believe that thou hast sent me.
17:22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be
one as we are, even as we are one
17:23 I in them and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one...
17:24 Father, I will that they also , whom thou hast given me, be with me where
I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst
me before the foundation of the world.
What did Jesus mean by being one? (17:11 they may be one, as we are). He tells us in John 17:21: That they all may be one as thou Father art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us. Now, I cannot impose upon Jesus to lie. If you believe the gospel, you must believe Jesus is telling us something that is possible for us. Jesus always knew the hearts and minds of his followers. He was one with them, but they were not one with Him. Judas even betrayed Him. This is what his at-one-ment was all about! However, after Jesus' departure Peter was able to discern the heart of a man and reprove him. Acts 8:20-23.

His crucifixion was not just about His taking on the sins of the world. It was an example of what we must be willing to sacrifice in order to achieve at-one-ment with He and the Father. (See 17:21). His atonement was more than a self-sacrifice - it was an example to us. Jesus always led by example. "For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you." John 13:15. "For even here unto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps...." 1 Peter 2:21. The fact that Jesus' atonement was an example is evident in Mark 10:37-40: "They (James and John) said unto Him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left-hand, in thy glory. But Jesus said unto them, you know not what you ask: can you drink of the cup that I drink of? And be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? And they said unto Him, we can. And Jesus said unto them, Ye shall indeed drink of the cup that I drink of; and with the baptism that I am baptized withal shall ye be baptized; but to sit on my right hand and on my left-hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared." "Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall onto the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, then it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; but he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." John 12:24,25.

For Jesus was... "made an high priest forever after the order of Melchisidec" Hebrews 6: 20, and Jesus was ordained by God. Acts 17:21. "For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins." Hebrews 5:1. In other words Jesus is a member of a priesthood which requires sacrifice. "So also Christ glorified not Himself to be made an high priest; but He [Father] that said unto him [Jesus], Thou art my Son, today have I begotten thee. [Jesus became the begotten Son of the Father]. As He saith also in another place [another world], Thou art a priest forever after the order of Melchisidec. Who in the days of his flesh [Jesus was mortal in this prior existence], when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death [His Atoner], and was heard in that he feared [Here on earth He did not fear]; though he were a Son [in the gospel], yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered [He suffered because of disobedience]; and being made perfect [He was made perfect through trial and accepting an atonement for Him], he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisidec." Hebrews 5:6-10. Jesus was also an apostle. Hebrews 3:1.

Then a warning is given: "of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing." Hebrews 5:11. The Hebrews are reproved for their need of milk, rather than of this strong meat. Hebrews 7:24 continues: "But this man, because he continueth forever, hath an unchangeable priesthood." "For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated forevermore."(He was begotten by the oath of His Father). Hebrews 7:27-28. Hebrews 5 concludes: "For every one who useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil." Hebrews 5:13-14. These are the "first principles of the oracles of God." Hebrews 5:12. These oracles are not commandments, but covenants, which represent gospel Truths. Some made these covenants before this life. But the ones who did not make these covenants all worship the beast of Revelation because their "names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." Revelation 13:8. At the end of this world the books are opened and our works from this life are recorded for our judgment in the book of life. Revelation 20:12. Then are "a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea." Revelation 21:1. "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear." Hebrews 11:3.

If you question Hebrews and Revelation, read it in The Acts 13:33-41: "God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that He hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption .... But he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption. Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. Beware therefore, lest that come upon you, which is spoken of in the prophets; Behold, ye despisers, and wonder, and perish: for I work a work in your days, a work which ye shall in no wise believe, though a man declare it unto you." The Father's words to Jesus are recorded in Psalms: "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth forthy possesion. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron... Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him." Psalms 2:1-12. In His prior life He lived these words of Isaiah: "He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation?" Isaiah 53:8. In other words in His life before this world [the beginning], He sinned, but accepted an atonement for Him - a path which led to his escape from prison and on to perfection. How could He be taken from judgment in this world, if the Father has given Him all judgment? Before His crucifixion He told His disciples: "For the Father judgeth no man but hath committed all judgment unto the Son." John 5:22.

"Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to the seed, which is Christ. And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law [the Word of His Father], which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that is should make the promise of none effect. For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise. Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hands of a mediator." Galatians 3:16-19.

Now remember Jesus came to fulfill the Mosaic Old Testament law. His life was prophesied in Isaiah, which describes the progress of our Savior's work from start to finish. Truly, the words of Isaiah are great indeed. There we see these same principles our Lord gave us as a new law in Hebrews. The Law Jesus followed in Isaiah states: "Whom shall he teach knowledge? And whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. For precept must be upon precept...." Isaiah 28:9-10.

Isaiah also tells us who the dragon beast of Revelation is. "The LORD of Hosts hath sworn saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand: That I will break the Assyrian in my land, and upon my mountains tread him under foot: then shall his yoke depart from off them, and his burden depart from off their shoulders. This is the purpose that is purposed on the whole earth: and this the hand that is stretched out upon all nations. For the LORD of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? And his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back? In the year that king Ahaz died was this burden. Rejoice not thou, whole Palestina, because the rod of him that smote thee is broken: for out of the serpent's root [Assyria] shall come forth a cockatrice, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent [a dragon beast]." Isaiah 14:24-29. Thus, the dragon beast arises before Jesus' birth. Part of the purpose of this book is to show that the dragon beast included none other than the imperial Roman Empire which did slay our Lord, and scatter Israel for the last time until the 20th century. This is the purpose that is purposed on the whole earth. Isaiah continues: "...and I will kill thy root with famine, and he [the dragon] shall slay thy remnant." Isaiah 14:30.

So let us see what happened when king Ahaz died. Ahaz ruled Judah when king Tilgath-pilneser ruled Assyria from the city of Asshur. King Ahaz began to do evil in the sight of the LORD and tried to buy peace by giving the king of Assyria precious things (silver and gold) of the temple. He changed the order of sacrifice (2 Kings 16) and began to sacrifice to the Assyrian gods saying he desired their help like they helped the Syrians. 2 Chronicles 28:19-24. This is the beginning of the captivity of the children of Israel, because they did turn from the word of the LORD. Hoshea carried Israel away captive into Assyria. 2 Kings 17. The king of Assyria was in turn conquered by king Cyaxares (Greek for Uvakhshtra), the Mede, and king Nabopolassar (not his son, Nebuchadnezzar) of Babylon who divided up the Assyrian kingdom between them. With the help of Babylonian troops Cyaxares captured the capitol, Asshur, in 614 B.C., and destroyed Ninevah in 612 B.C. [1] Now Isaiah 59:4-6 tells us that the cockatrice is an earthly servant of evil. Its eggs hatch more cockatrices or vipers because evil tends to beget evil. Following this path does not allow us to put on garments of holiness. So the LORD is telling Israel not to rejoice because the serpent of Assyria (which beguiled Ahaz) is destroyed, because He will bring a cockatrice and a dragon upon them. King Nabopolassar's son, Nebuchadnezzar, was hatched from the evil of desiring the power of Assyria. From Babylon he began to build his fruit of a mighty empire which even conquered Egypt (2 Kings 24:7). He sieged and destroyed Jerusalem. The Jewish inhabitants were carried away to Babylon. Thus a fiery flying serpent was born, which brought the followers of God into captivity. Thus, it was the beginning of the great red dragon of Revelation (Rome), which did slay our Lord, and destroy Jerusalem - spiritual Babylon.

In Revelation the beast has the teeth of a lion in its heads. In Daniel 7 the lion is used to represent the kingdom of Babylon. Joel 1:6 tells us: "For a nation is come up upon my land, strong, and without number, whose teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he hath the cheek teeth of a great lion." One of the relatively few pieces of art which has survived ancient Babylon is a painted tile relief of a male lion with his mouth agape, and his teeth bare. It can be seen in the State Museum, Berlin or one can find it illustrated before the introduction of Durant's book. [2] Now in the days of Daniel the LORD told King Nebuchadnezzar that he was the head of gold of the image of Daniel 2. So the rich, Hellenistic city of Babylon is the beginning of the dragon of Scripture, the earthly representative of Satan. But let us return to our discussion on the atonement.

The Old Testament also teaches us about the atonement. (Moses said "I shall make an atonement for your sin." Exodus 32:20. See also Numbers 16:46). Another possible translation for the Hebrew is reconcilement. Leviticus tells us: "And he shall go out unto the altar that is before the LORD, and make an atonement for it...And when he hath made an end of reconciling the holy place , and the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat." Leviticus 16:18-20. It is clear that the atonement is the removal of impurity in order to be reconciled or at one. Thus, in the Levitical atonement the priest must be completely free of all outer blemishes(Lev. 21:17-21), and the sacrificial atonement could only remove temporal punishments prescribed by the Mosaic law (Lev. 4). In the Melchizidec atonement the priest must be free of all inner blemishes. He must possess a circumcision of the heart (Romans 2:29). Thus, God will wipe all tears from our eyes after experiencing the pain (Revelation 21:4) of this process of being dipped into the sea of the world.

The sum of it is that God's law is not easy, but requires sacrifice and works even as Jesus prayed in His great intercessory prayer. Only Jesus makes this burden light. There is no doctrine of "easy" grace in the gospel. Our Lord's grace towards us is not an excuse for us to work below our potential. It is His truth and grace which make His yoke light, and a joy to bear. This does not justify us in throwing off the yoke, and knowingly refusing to follow His commandments, but in forgiving our shortcomings. Peter told his brethren: "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood [all male members of the church were in the priesthood], to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ." 1 Peter 2:5. "Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet, Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? Saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest?" Acts 7:48-9. In Romans 12:1 Paul directs: "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Of course this does not mean that each of us are called to die on the cross, but are we of the heart to be willing to do so? "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren." 1 John 3:16.

People are deceiving themselves in thinking that all they must do is call on Jesus and by his grace they will receive the ultimate reward and can go home and watch television. Jesus had a work to do. Are we better than Jesus? "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth [i.e. works] the will of my Father which is in heaven." Matthew 7:21. "Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone." James 2:17. "Also unto thee O Lord belongeth mercy: for thou renderest to every man according to his work." Psalms 62:12. "If thou sayest behold we knew it not, does not He that pondereth the heart consider it? And He that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? And shall not He render to every man according to his works?" Proverbs 24:12. "Make you perfect in every good work to do his will...." Hebrews 13:21. For His grace towards us calls us to work for Him. As Jesus told Peter: "If you love me, feed my sheep."

For Jesus taught us to be perfect, even as His Father taught Him. John 8: 28. He himself was taught by example: "The Son can do nothing of Himself, but that He seeth the Father do." John 5:19. Jesus said "be ye therefore perfect even as your Father which art in heaven is perfect," Matthew 5:48, and to become "perfect in one," John 17:23, "... and to the spirits of just men made perfect" Hebrews 12:23, "that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus." Colossians 1:28. "The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master." Luke 6:40. "Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind...." 2 Corinthians 13:11. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." 2 Timothy 3: 16-17. Again one must ask: is Jesus telling us something we can do, or is he lying to us? A believer of the gospel/Jesus must believe that we can become perfect as the Father is or else he is calling Jesus a liar. In fact Jesus is giving us a commandment. "God is not a man, that he should lie." Numbers 23:19. (God is not just a spirit, but is a man who would cease to be God should he lie). "He that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son." 1 John 5:10. This was not something new. "And when Abram [to become Abraham] was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect." Genesis 17:1.

Thus, one's willingness to walk steadfastly before God and accept at-one-ment through Jesus Christ leads to perfection. Jesus gave us a new law which mirrors the law He came to fulfill. Who will declare it? Now, this does not mean that all the Old Testament law was fulfilled by the resurrection of Jesus. His sacrificial death fulfilled part of the law, and He has continued to work toward its completion. For instance the Books of Isaiah and Daniel take us to the very last days. As He told his disciples: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." Matthew 5:17-18. But He did give us a new law to guide us in accomplishing His ends. "For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many [all in this world] for the remission of sins." Matthew 26:28. Those who would call themselves Christian have a question which needs to be answered: do we believe in Jesus Christ or do we believe Jesus Christ? The Pharisees said they believed in God, but as Jesus proved them, they did not believe His gospel.

The Father is above all and below all. He is omnipotent. He knoweth even Satan's thoughts but Satan does not know His. He knoweth the hearts of all. How does one become perfect? "Let your heart therefore be perfect with the LORD our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day." 1Kings 8:61. "Wherewith shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?" Micah 6: 6-8. Again, we must do his works despite all obstacles of the world. Yet, we can only become perfect through Him. We cannot lift ourselves up to make ourselves perfect. "Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ." Hebrews 13:21.

Do not take these words lightly. They deserve your thorough examination before you reject them as that is what Jesus expects. "For verily I say unto you, till heaven and Earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." Matthew 5:18. HE MEANS IT. Your salvation and your posterity depend on your complete and thorough investigation. I have made it a point of my life to not fear for fear can stop us from searching earnestly for the truth. So I have not feared any idea but have earnestly sought all sides for the truth. Yes, that meant I had to fight doubts, but I forged on and learned more. I've always considered fear to be an evil force. Force and fear were not used nor taught by Jesus. Those who peddle fear of complete investigation and soul searching are unwittingly doing the devil's work for he uses fear and force rather than love and beauty to keep people from seeking truth. And may I remind you that he that does not believe in Satan does not believe in the gospel for Jesus talked to Satan. Satan's work is to spread fear and doubt through lies about the gospel - to move these emotions in every man. We do not grow by running from them, but by facing and overcoming them. When have you ever become a better person by running from your problems? "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." 1 Cor. 10:13. Of course, don't go looking for evil. We will have to face it and overcome it when our Lord believes we are ready. The closer you get to the truth, the more evil or fear you will be asked to overcome. This is why Jesus asked Peter to follow Him unto death. This is why the early Christians were persecuted.

Let him who has eyes to see and ears to hear understand the word of the Lord God: "Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey." Revelation 10:9. "... I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." 2 Corinthians 6: 17-18. We can be begotten through His gospel (2 Corinthians). For "He that overcometh shall inherit all things: and I will be his God, and he shall be my son." Revelation 21:7. "And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations. And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father." Revelation 2:26-27.

"And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live." Numbers 21:8. (Much later King Hezekiah breaks the brasen serpent because the people start burning incense to it. 2 Kings 18:4). "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up." John 3:14. Thus, Jesus overcame the ultimate earthly symbol of Satan's power - the crucifix. "That through death he miight destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil: And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage." Hebrews 2:14-15. As he told Peter or Cephas, a stone (John 1:42): "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girded thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shall stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not. This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me." John 21:18-19. "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Matthew 16:18. Jesus Himself led the way by looking evil in the face without anger or sin, and thus overcoming it. "That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." John 3:15. "As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord; and to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons." Luke 2: 23-4.

The story of Moses can be likened unto a parable. Moses was so named because he was drawn out of the water. Moses was chosen by the Lord God to lead his people out of bondage due to his meekness and willingness to reject the riches of Egypt as well as withstanding the rejection of his people saying, who are you to lead us. After 40 years the angel of the LORD appeared to Moses in a burning bush, and Moses heard the voice of the LORD. The LORD gave him a rod or staff, which represents the word, which Aaron wielded for him in the first Egyptian plagues or signs. Through the power of the word, the LORD revealed the truth of His power in plagues. But after the first requests were made to let the people go, the evil taskmasters tried to get the followers of the truth to submit by using increased force and fear against the humble followers who had their work load increased. Some rebuked Moses for bringing these woes upon them. Yet, those who continued to follow Moses and the truths of the staff were protected by the hand of the LORD, and led out of bondage. The evil taskmasters even tried to follow to win back their slaves, but through the power of the LORD in the staff of His word, the chosen leader, Moses, parted the sea [representing the sea of the world], and the humble followers were led on an exodus through the wilderness, where they learned and grew for 40 years, to a land flowing with milk and honey or the promised place. Noah was commanded to build an ark, which can be likened to the ark of the covenant or word holding the testimony. Imperfect as he was, he followed the command, and the ark of the word brought a part of all life through 40 days of trial (the same time period Moses and Jesus were in the wilderness) represented in the sea of the world to a new life where the LORD promised the evil flood or sea of the world would never have power over them again - represented in the rainbow.

Chapter 2

This being said I will go on to point two. In Jesus' own words He and the Father are not the same being. For Jesus said "My Father is greater than I." John 14:28. Jesus gave His Father the glory: "And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? None is good, save one, that is, God." Luke 18:19. "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him." John 1:18. So no man had seen God the Father in the fullness of His glory. This makes it clear that when Moses and seventy three other elders saw the God of Israel with paved work of sapphire under His feet, and ate and drank, they saw our Lord Jesus. Exodus 24:9-11. "And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God, and did eat and drink." Exodus 24:11. This implies that Jesus laid His hands upon Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and the seventy in order to confer a gift upon them. But He did not lay his hands upon the nobles, although they also saw Him. Again, more confirmation they were with Jesus who gave Moses His law, and He told them He was their God, and they were His children for the Father had given them unto Him. He told James and John their request to sit on His right and left hand "... is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared." Mark 10:37-40. "Verily, verily, I say unto you, the Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." John 5:19. "When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am He, and that I do nothing of myself, but as my Father hath taught me I speak these things. And He that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; For I do always those things which please Him." John 8: 28-29. But at the climax as a complete test of Jesus' faith and willing sacrifice the Father did leave Him for a short space while on the cross: "My God, my God, Why hast thou forsaken me?" Matthew 27:46. Thus, the Father's will and not His was done. (They have separate wills, but Jesus followed the Father's). And finally: "Verily, I say unto you that this generation shall not pass till all these things be done... But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father." Mark 13:30,32 (although having ascended to sit on the right hand of His Father, He may now know.)

So both the Old Testament and the New Testament reveal the same principles. "Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.... He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law. Thus saith God the LORD [the Father]... I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; ...I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images. Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them." Isaiah 42:1-9; God the Father is telling Jesus some powerful words isn't He? This scripture again makes it clear that Jesus did not know all things, but followed the instructions of His Father, who tells Him all things in advance, because He had been chosen as the elect, the Only Begotten of His Father.

Now, if they were literally one being in all respects, I respectfully submit the Father nor Jesus (as His Word) nor His prophets could have uttered these words for He cannot lie. But the fact is that the "spiritual or mental" (if you will) connection was briefly broken while He was on the cross, and they were not one in that sense; and Jesus said not He but only the Father knew when He was returning. Jesus' words make no sense if one accepts the trinity as a literal doctrine - that the godhead has a single being. In meeting the requirements of the Mosaic Old Testament law, Jesus was "the mediator of the new covenant." Hebrews 12:24. If He had chosen a different path, woe unto mankind! "Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul." Hebrews 10:38-9.

There will be those who will still argue that the Old Testament says I art thou God (the great I am; see John 8: 42 & 8: 58), and thou shalt have no other God before me. This is true. Jesus is to be the soul and spirit of our worship as He completed the law of sacrifice of the Melchisidec high priesthood through His atoning sacrifice. He is "... the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." Hebrews 5: 9. Those who wish to fully understand this subject should turn to Hebrews 1: "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person [the Father is a perfect man], and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high." "For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be unto him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?...But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God [the Father begat the Son who spake the Word of LORD of the Old Testament], is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity [having been tried]; therefore God, even thy God [His Father], hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: They shall perish; but thou remainest." Hebrews 1:1-11. The Gospel of John affirms this: "In the beginning was the Word [Jesus] and the Word was with God, and the Word was God [His Father made Him God]. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him [Jesus]; and without him was not any thing made that was made." John 1:1-3.

So yes, the Old Testament does say to worship only the Lord because there is no other God beside Him. We worship in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer. The Father is His God, who answered His prayers. The Old Testament also tells us of gods (with a small 'g'), but we are never commanded to worship them. The Old Testament also contains scripture recognizing a plurality. "I am a God of gods." Deuteronomy 10:17. "And God [the plural word Eloheim in Hebrew] said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness..." Genesis 1:26. After Adam and Eve partook of the fruit "... the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil [the path to perfection]: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat and live for ever." Genesis 3:22. But from the very beginning Satan did seek to pervert the truth saying "Ye shall not surely die [the lie]: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof [of the fruit], then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods [used in the Septuagint (Greek New Testament) by Satan in reference to the heavenly court, see Hebrews 12:23], knowing good and evil." Genesis 3:4-5. "God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods." Psalms 82:1.

And finally Jesus' own words: "is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?" John 10:34. Jesus got these words from Isaiah 41:23. Also Psalms 82:6: "I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High." In this light the words of the gospel become so clear: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." Philippians 2: 5-8. The Hebrews hated Jesus, because He said He was the Son of God; and for this He was crucified because they did not understand the law given them. So they who were "sons of God" (Genesis 6:2; Hosea 1:10; John 1:12) put the Son of God to death. Jesus said, "If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken; say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?" John 10:35-36. "But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory." 1 Cor. 2:7-8.

"I receive not honour from men. But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you. I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive. How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only? Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust. For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?" John 5:41-47. "Jesus asked them, Saying, What think ye of Christ? Whose son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David. He saith unto them, How then doth David in [by the power of, Mark 12:36] spirit call him Lord saying, the LORD said unto my Lord, sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? [Psalms 110:1-2] If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?" Matthew 22:41-5.

Do not be as Esau who sold his birthright as the firstborn to Jacob for the desire of the flesh - sod pottage (porridge for his hunger). Genesis 25. Nor be like Jacob who was willing to deceive their father to obtain the blessing as well - be like the Jacob who humbled himself, and sought forgiveness from God and Esau and became Israel. Be like Melchisedec. "For this Melchisedec..." became "Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life [because like Jesus he inherited an unchangeable priesthood]; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually." Hebrews 7:1-3. "The holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing [the Temple of Jerusalem]: Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience." Hebrews 9:8-9. Moses brought a law fulfilled in Jesus Christ. Jesus brought a new law showing the way to the holiest of all.

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them also he called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified." Romans 8:28-30. The gospel of Revelation states that "he that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son." Revelation 21:7. This is also supported by the Old Testament: "And did not he make one [the wife of the covenant or the one church]? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed." Malachi 2:15. Now Isaiah tells us: "And I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob, and out of Judah an inheritor of my mountains: and mine elect shall inherit it, and my servants shall dwell there." Isaiah 65:9. If the Father and Son were always one even before the beginning of this world, why would the Father need an inheritor? Remember, Revelation tells us he that overcometh shall inherit all things. "And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his Lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, when his Lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath." Luke 12:42-4. "Thus saith the LORD, the heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? For all these things hath my hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word." Isaiah 66:1-2. This law is reflected in the New Testament: "Blessed by ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God.... But woe unto you that are rich! For ye have received your consolation. Woe unto you that are full! For ye shall hunger. Woe unto you that laugh now! [who are not contrite] for ye shall mourn and weep." Luke 6:20-25.

Isaiah also prophesied: "Therefore the Lord will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and the LORD will discover their secret parts." Isaiah 3:17. "And in that day seven women (churches) shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach. In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem." Isaiah 4:1-3. In Revelation 2-3 there are seven churches. These are the churches of the undefiled. In Revelation 14 there are 144,000 who have the name of the Father of the Lamb standing on mount Sion written in their foreheads, and "sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth." Rev 14: 3. "These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb." Revelation 14:4. "And he measured the wall thereof [of new Jerusalem], an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel." Revelation 21:17. "And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau; for the LORD hath spoken it." "And saviours shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD's." Obadiah 1:18,21.

"To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God." Revelation 2:7. Remember the tree of life in the garden of Eden? God also shows us concerning the tree of life in Proverbs 3. "And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations." Revelation 22:1-2. "For God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16. "Jesus saith... I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John 14:6. "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." John 15:5. "And other [seed] fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that has ears to hear, let him hear." Luke 8:8. The fruit is exceedingly wholesome, white, and pure. "Speak unto the children of Israel, and take of every one of them a rod according to the house of their fathers, of all their princes according to the house of their fathers twelve rods: write thou every man's name upon his rod." "And it shall come to pass, that the man's rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you." Numbers 17:2,5.

"And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end...." Daniel 11:35. "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?" Hebrews 12:6-7. Therefore, know this - that God does trieth our hearts. 1 Thessalonians 2:4. For the measure of one's faith can be known by the trial of the heart he sustains with gladness and joy which is in Jesus Christ. "THE LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his names's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever." Psalms 23.

Chapter 3

The Jewish nation had been repeatedly warned that the light of the bridegroom would be taken from them. Jeremiah 25: 10. They were warned that He would no longer speak to them. "Her gates are sunk into the ground; he hath destroyed and broken her bars: her king and her princes are among the Gentiles: the law is no more; her prophets also find no vision from the Lord." Lamentations 2:9. During these ancient times the Old Testament reveals that the people were killing the prophets in order to silence the reproval of the Lord. "...The children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only [Elijah], am left; and they seek my life, to take it away." 1 Kings 19:14. Nehemiah 9:26: "Nevertheless they were disobedient, and rebelled against thee, and cast thy law behind their backs, and slew thy prophets which testified against them...." "...Thou hast slain my children, and delivered them to cause them to pass through the fire for them?" Ezekiel 16:21. The remaining people of the Israelite nation (Judah) soon fell into apostasy without guidance. Thus, we find that they were told: "neither will we say anymore to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods: for in thee the Fatherless findeth mercy." Hosea 14:3. The truth was lost to them in apostacy. In fact in Genesis the Hebrews called God Eloheim which is a pleural word, however, the reason therefore has been lost to them. Jesus they called Yahweh, being one Lord and one Savior. The priesthood survived for awhile in a splintered, degraded state with at least three different sects until approximately the time of Jesus.

The hard evidence shows that after the first century, A.D., there were many varying opinions in the early church on some major points of the gospel. The major differences seem to have arisen between two schools - the eastern schools of Antioch and Alexandria [Egypt], and the western school of Carthage, North Africa. The remaining writings from the second century are extremely scanty, but none show an existence of the doctrine of the trinity. Irenaeus(120-202 A.D.), who wrote against many "heresies," cited Mark 13:32 (Jesus said only the Father knows when He will return) in concluding "The Father, therefore, has been declared by our Lord to excel with respect to knowledge." Irenaeus charged that perfect knowledge cannot be attained in the present life. There is no talk of a trinity.[1] Justin (100-165) wrote similarly.

In the third century we see perhaps a greater divergence in the schools. Origen has become a prime representative of the eastern school of the time. He never wrote of a trinity, but spoke of the Son being begotten out of the Father's will, and being a separate entity - the Logos, or Word of God.[2] Tertullian, however, was schooled in Carthage. Although most Catholic scholars consider him the father of the trinity because he wrote of the Father and Son being of one substance ["from unity of substance with God" See Apology, chp.21], he also wrote things such as "'The Father is the entire substance, but the Son is a derivation and portion of the whole.'" (in Against Praxeas). He also tells us that there was a time when the Son did not exist in Against Hermogenes.[3] In disharmony with the present Catholic church, according to Tertullian the Son's beginning was when God said "Let there be light."[4] In Against Marcion Tertullian wrote that the perfection of man's being lay in his liberty which God purposefully bestowed on him. Thus, the fall of Adam and Eve was imputable to man's own choice. Further, that man being imbued with liberty is superior to the angels and overcomes the angel which lured man to the fall.[5] "In direct contrast to the mystic idealism and metaphysical speculation of the Alexandrians Tertullian maintains a determined realism with a strong tendency to materialism.... Tertullian rejects Origen's idea of the pre-existence of the soul, as well as the Pythagorean theory of metempsychosis. Nor is the human soul separately created in each individual born, but it is transmitted from parent to child, propagated by generation as per traducem, along with the body."[6] Tertullian became a Montanist, who believed that biblical prophecy lived, and won a great following. Augustine is credited with winning back these followers to the Catholic church. Even the bishop of Rome, Dionysius (d. 268), in writing to address alleged heresies in Alexandria, Egypt did not talk of a trinity. He wrote that there is one Pantokrator ['the Almighty']. He maintained Christ the Pantokrator is the Son, and as such is distinct from the Father who is the God, the Pantokrator.[7]

By the third century the attempt to reconcile monotheism with the worship of Jesus Christ as divine resulted in several different theologies.[8] Out of this backdrop Arius and many eastern bishops took the view that the Son was somehow subordinate to the Father or that there was a time before he was begotten that He was not the Son. Arius documents for us the wide divergence of opinions at the time of the fourth century. In a letter to Eusebius of Nicomedia, which survives in the writings of the western bishops, Arius declares his view: "And as your brother in Caesarea, Eusebius, and Theodotus, Paulinus, Athanasius, Gregory, Aetius and all the bishops in the east say that God is prior to the Son without beginning, they have become anathema - except for the ignorant sectarians Philogonius, Hellanicus and Macarius, some of whom say that the son is an eructation and others, an uncreated emanation." In a letter to Bishop Athanasius (bishop of Alexandria), which was apparently sent to emperor Constantine, Arius declares

...this God has begotten an only Son before eternal times, and through him has made the ages and the rest. He has begotten him not in appearance but in truth and brought him into being by his own will, immutable and unalterable; God's perfect creature but not like any other creature; an offspring, but not like any other offspring; and not an emanation, as Valentinus believed the Father's offspring to be; nor as Mani represented the offspring as a co-essential part of the Father; nor like Sabellius, who said "Son-Father" to divide the unity; nor as Hieracas called him a light kindled from a light, or a lamp become two; nor existent before his begetting and later generated or created anew as a Son. You yourself, blessed Pope [the custom of calling a bishop papa or pope started in Alexandria - not Rome], have very often publicly dissuaded those who give these explanations in the church and assembly. But as we say, He is a Son created by the will of God before the times and ages, who has received his life, being and glory from the Father, the Father subsisting together with him.[9]

Rather than being some small "heresy," writers at the time make it clear that the view of the begotten nature of the Son held by many eastern bishops was a quite pervasive view with roots which also reflect themselves in the writings of Origen. They did not want to maintain that the Son was always co-equal with the Father. The western bishop of Rome, however, was not pleased with this view as expressed by Arius, perhaps because Arius declared the Son did not exist before his begetting. In 325 A.D., Emperor Constantine called a council at Nicaea to resolve the matter. Out of the thousands of bishops of the church, most of which were in the east, apparently 317 bishops appeared at Nicaea. The bishop of Rome sent his representative, however. No record seems to exist as to how many were summoned. Here, perhaps the greatest controversy with Arius became evident. "An opponent reports the Arians' claim: 'Certainly we also are able to become sons of God, just like that one [Christ]. For it is written, 'I begot and raised up sons' (Isa. 1.2).' Viewed in this way, early Arian understanding of a God related to his Son and the Son's fellow creatures by will is fundamental to a scheme of redemption intentionally opposed to the Nicene doctrinal programme built upon the consubstantiality of the Father and Son."[10] Arius' opponents alleged that Arius was inviting in an aspect of pagan Greek theology. This apparently explains why western bishops came to oppose Arius no matter the means.

At the council of Nicaea, which Constantine presided over in a gold chair, Constantine tore up the petitions of the bishops and burned them, which set the tone. It was clear that "Arianism" was going to be denounced, and that somehow reaching a unity was more important to the emperor than reaching a scriptural consensus. "It was found that all of the biblical terms were acceptable to the Arians, because the latter could cite verses of the Bible reconciling the terms with their notion of the precedence of the Father. The bishops then were faced with a suggestion that the use of the word homoousios [consubstantiality; Greek for the same substance or one substance] to express the relation of the Father to the Son. This word had been the subject of controversy in the third century, and had been declared heretical by a council in 268 [Council of Antioch per Athanasius, De Synodis 25, 45; & two other sources], but that was before anyone faced Arius' propositions. In the present circumstances the bishops saw that the word was unacceptable to the Arians. They used it, and also condemned explicitly Arian theses. The Council's intent was incorporated into a creed [the Nicene Creed] which was written up...."[11]

The Synod at Nice set forth this Creed... We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of all things visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten of his Father, of the substance of the Father, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance [consubstantiality] with the Father. By whom all things were made, both which be in heaven and in earth. Who for us men and for our salvation came down and was incarnate and was made man. He suffered and the third day He rose again, and ascended into Heaven. And he shall come again to judge the quick and the dead. And in the Holy Ghost. And whosoever shall say that there was a time when the Son of God was not, or that before he was begotten he was not, or that he was made of things that were not, or that he is of a different substance or essence or that he is a creature, or subject to change or conversion - all that to say, the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathematizes them.[12]

"And for this cause [that they loved not the truth] God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie." 2 Thessalonians 2:11. The truth is that the trinity is a man-made doctrine - a lie. It is obvious that under the Nicene Creed not only Arius but the progenitor of homoousios, Tertullian, would have been anathematized, because both said there was a time when the Son was not. If so, then there was a time when there was no trinity. Even the Nicene creed did not complete a trinity, because the Holy Ghost was not declared as having homoousios with the Father and the Son - an oversight which marks the words of the doctrine as man-made (or Satan-inspired) rather than God-given. "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened." Romans 1:18-21. In view of 200 years of the most severe persecution, killing, and mutilation early Christians underwent and the varying opinions which survive in writing to today, why are modern Churches so confident that the truth was right at the surface for Constantine to validate? Constantine and his brother-in-law Licinius, who had ruled the eastern part of the Roman Empire, had only just issued a joint declaration of religious toleration in 313 A.D. Prior to that time Christianity had been illegal in the empire, and the previous emperor, Diocletian, had strongly persecuted Christians.

Upon finding that the bishop of Nicomedia and bishop of Nicaea were not interpreting the Nicene Creed the way he wished, Constantine deposed them without holding another council.[13] Constantine's attempt to bring unity to the church failed. "When Constantine died in 337, the eastern church was even more bitterly divided than when he rescued it from persecution."[14]

The debate continued. There were more councils. Athanasius, one of the most visible supporters of the Nicene Creed was excommunicated by an eastern council. He was reinstated and deposed again in 353 under a council convoked in Milan by the emperor.

A new council, held at Sirmium in 357, tried to secure religious peace by forbidding the use the use of the word "substance" in defining the relation of the Father and the Son and sanctioned only the term homoios (like). Adherents of this creed were called Homoeans. Although they were not Arians, their solution was rejected by conservatives in both East and West. In 359 a double council was held, the western bishops meeting at Ariminum, the eastern at Seleucia. The result was the acceptance of the Sirmian Creed, although the western council almost had to be starved into yielding.[15]

Under Gratian "A law dated 27 Feb. 380 commanded all men to follow the Nicene doctrine, 'committed by the apostle Peter to the Romans, and now professed by Damascus of Rome and Peter of Alexandria,' and threatened heretics with temporal punishment."[16] In 381 the First Ecumenical Council of Constantinople was held without the presence of any western dioceses. This council forever removed the right of disciples/ followers to vote in the "orthodox" churches. Such action was contrary to the procedure manifested in Acts 6:3-6 in which those called were confirmed by vote of the disciples, and ordained through the church officers, who in this instance were apostles. This council reformulated the creed to read "... the only begotten Son of God, begotten of his Father before all worlds... being of one substance with the Father...."[17] Of course, they removed the anathematizing language. So there it is - the debate surrounding Arius represented no small schism. In fact the more established Asian churches had held significantly differing views from the Roman West. What Jesus saith He directed John the Revelator to "...write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia." Revelation1:11.

Edward Gibbons, an English author of a seven volume work on the Roman empire had this to say about the doctrine of the trinity as expressed at Constantinople:

A final and unanimous sentence was pronounced to ratify the equal diety of the Holy Ghost; the mysterious doctrine has been received by all the nations and all the churches of the Christian world; and their grateful reverence has assigned to the bishops of Theodosius the second rank among the general councils. Their knowledge of religious truth may have been preserved by tradition [but we have examined the evidence which shows it wasn't], or it may have been communicated by inspiration [but the church denied ongoing prophecy], but the sober evidence of history will not allow much weight to the personal authority of the fathers of Constantinople. In an age when the ecclesiastics had scandalously degenerated from the model of apostolical purity, the most worthless and corrupt were always the most eager to frequent, and disturb, the episcopal assemblies. The conflict and fermentation of so many opposite interests and tempers inflamed the passions of the bishops; and their ruling passions were the love of gold and the love of dispute.[18]

How can he make such a conclusion? Records which have survived only in north Africa show Constantine instituted grants for payments to clergy.[19] Constantine used other means by which to ingratiate the clergy to the state, which at the time were of course seen as his Christian benevolence. "...The exemption of the Church from the payment of 'tributum,'... the customary taxes in money... granted the clergy so accelerated the rush to enter their ranks that seven years later ordination was limited to those whose moderate circumstances would provide certainty that their ordination would involve no financial loss to the State."[20] People were converted not by change of heart but by change of their pocket book. The church historian of Constantine's day, Eusebius, admits and even extols this appearance of generosity of Constantine: "'The emperor created dignities of every kind so that more and more could receive honours from him.'"[21] "The favor shown towards the Christians by Constantine after he became sole emperor prompted conversions to the religion of his adoption in vast numbers. When Christianity not only ceased to be dangerous but also became fashionable, it was inevitable that large numbers of those who wished to ingratiate themselves with him should declare themselves Christians." [22]

Constantine built a basilica over St. Peter's tomb in Rome. His wife's dowry, the Lateran palace, was given to the bishop of Rome. Constantine poured money into his new capital of Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey). Constantine built many churches but in Constantinople he built a church he originally dedicated to the Holy Trinity and shortly thereafter named the Holy Apostles. "Only the rarest and most costly materials were used for its construction, and its ornaments in gold and silver with diamonds and other gems were almost countless. Not the slightest trace of it survives today."[23] Perhaps the reason Constantine renamed the church becomes evident in reviewing history. "Inside, in two equal rows, were twelve empty sarcophagi, one for each apostle. In secret, Constantine prepared a sumptuous sarcophagus to hold his own body and stand in the center; he would thus be associated with the apostles by any who came to pray there."[24]

"Quite properly Christian historians honored him [Constantine] with the title of 'the Great,' and the Eastern Orthodox Churches have made him a saint and hailed him as an 'equal of the Apostles.'"[25] Eusebius paints the picture as follows: "God's providential intentions were realized by Constantine: Augustus had united the world under Roman rule, Christ under God's, and Constantine welded together the two unities in a Christian society which was, in principle, universal.... the empire was an image of the heavenly kingdom, its boundaries the limits of Christendom, the emperor the representative of divine authority in the world." "The Christian emperors became God's agents in bringing their subjects under the yoke of Christ."[26]

As for me, I do not presume to tell the Father and the Son how they are related to one another. The most trustworthy words we have are in the scriptures and are given us by prophets - not in councils headed by emperors ordained as pagan priests. But Eusebius painted such a wonderful picture at the end of his History of the Church: "'Constantine, the most mighty victor, adorned with every virtue of piety, together with his son Crispus, a prince most beloved of God, in all respects like to his father.'"[27]

The lens of history is much more revealing than opinions of early church historians, however. First, in the opinion of a Catholic scholar, Constantine lied about his age apparently in order to escape criticism of how he managed to escape persecution as a "Christian" before 313 A.D.[28] A traditional story places the time of Constantine's conversion in 312 when, according to Eusebius, at the battle of Milvian Bridge he saw a type of cross superimposed on the sun with the words HOC SIGNO VICTOR ERIS (by this sign you will conquer) before the battle, and felt assured of victory. Tradition claims that Jesus appeared to him in a dream, and told him what to do with the sign. The ancient Christian historian, Lactantius, reports in his De Mortibus Persecutorum, 44-46, however, that Constantine had the vision in a dream before the battle, and that he didn't see a cross, but a christogram. The christogram is basically an X, the Greek abbreviation for CH, with a P superimposed on it, which is the Greek equivalent of R. Thus the christogram could be a form of Greek abbreviation for CHR.[29] With Constantine's usage it came to be recognized as a Christian symbol, but the influx of pagan converts apparently favored the imperial Tau . Some historians believe that the Tau, , had already been on the imperial banner, so it must have been the christogram that was added. The cross bar had been on the imperial Roman vexillum long before Constantine as the writings of Tertullian confirm. The vexillum was the pagan Roman standard that carried a flag. No matter which story one believes, Constantine either had this type of cross, , or the christogram, , placed on his labarum, his purple imperial banner, thus, combining the imperial Roman emblems, with the or the christogram. Whichever symbol was added to the labarum according to the two historical accounts, any argument for its divine sanction fails disastrously.[30]

The Tau, , is an ancient form of cross, which predates Jesus. The Tau was a cross or letter T with a circle added to denote the ancient Chaldean (Babylonian) sun god, Tammuz. Tammuz is an ancient pagan god, whose name was memorialized as the fourth month of the year, Tammuz, when the Babylonian calender was established at the time of Hammurabi around 2300-2100 B.C. History seems unclear whether Tammuz was imported with the Semites of Hammurabi's time or was adopted from the Sumerians. Tammuz was a god of spring, the celebration of the return of life each year. To commemorate his passing each year just before the summer solstice, the mourning festival for Tammuz was celebrated in Babylonia to a very late date in Babylonian history. A spirit whose likeness was as fire and bright amber showed Ezekiel an abomination in a north gate of the LORD's house: "behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz." Ezekiel 8:14. Although Tammuz was later superceded by Bel and Marduk as pagan solar deities, depending on whether the Assyrians or the Semites were in control, these later deities often took on attributes of the former. In one later Babylonian creation story the embrace of Apsu "the deep" and the chaos dragon or beast, Tiamat, results in the production of the gods. A surviving cylinder-seal pictures Tiamat as a huge dragon. The Apsu was symbolized in a great basin bearing the name, which sat in the ziggurats. A conflict developed with the gods, and the exploits of Marduk in slaying the chaos dragon saved the gods. Marduk brought about order through the creation, and therefore Marduk earned all the names of the other gods, thereby superceding them "and becomes the solar god of spring par excellence" - the lord of gods.[31]

The Tau, , was adopted in Hellenistic cultures such as Rome, and sometimes had an elongated loop on the top rather than the circle. The reality of the Christian adoption of a pagan symbol is apparent when one studies ancient records. This exact same cross with the elongated looped-top can be found in pagan Egyptian hieroglyphics such as the book of breathings. It was quite common in the ancient Egyptian pagan religion as a symbol connected with the Egyptian resurrection. The keeper of the Egyptian and Assyrian Antiquities in the British Museum, Wallis Budge, has documented the Egyptian use of the symbol which was called the Tet, , from which proceeds life. It is found in the Papyrus of Ani. It was the pagan Egyptian symbol of life used by the god Osiris and the divinities which bore his name. Osiris was the god par excellence of the white crown. A bas-relief at Philae shows the grain-god, Osiris-Neprå, laying prostrate with grain growing from his body. The grain is being watered with a spouted vase with a cross on top. His body is supported by the symbols of the Tet and the scepter (symbol of power).[32] When about 390 A.D., the bishop of the Church of Alexandria, Egypt, destroyed the pagan temple of Serapis they found this cross symbol in the hieroglyphics, with which both the pagans and the Christians identified. Pagan converts familiar with the symbol reportedly said the hieroglyphic character was a form of cross signifying the life to come.[33] Another ancient Egyptian name for the symbol is the ankh of Akhnaton, and according to modern scholars, early Egyptian converts often used the ankh of Akhnaton as a sign of the cross. [34]

This symbol is now primarily recognized as an orthodox symbol, although it is often seen in a variant form - a cross with a right-facing flag on the top of the staff (superimposed P), which is also called a christogram. Nuns now wear the symbol around their necks like the vestal virgins of Pagan Rome did. In Medieval Catholic art the circle of the symbol was recognized as the sun - one can know this because a crescent moon was sometimes added on top. This caused the symbol to reflect Biblical allusions to the sun and moon in Ezekiel and elsewhere, thus blurring its pagan past. The cross is an image of worship found in many pagan religions including the ancient Celts before Christ. When Catholic missionaries arrived in Mexico, they found huge stone crosses.[35] Now if one accepts paganism as a satanic perversion of the truth had by Adam, Enoch, Melchizedec, and others, it is probable or possible that a pagan religion has some truth buried under the perversions, but how can one tell without prophetic power? The scriptures have the truth. Our God abhors images. Jesus never caused us to revere any image, including the cross, but after Constantine the cross became revered. Jesus saith: "... The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day. And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me." Luke 9:22-23.

Let us examine Constantine's life more closely to see what his works reflect. I will start with his two brother-in-laws, Licinius and Bassianus. "Chronology suggests a cynical view of Constantine's conduct. Licinius' son was born in the spring or summer of 315. During the winter of 315/6, it became obvious that Fausta [Constantine's wife], after more than eight years of marriage, was pregnant. If she should bear a son, he would deserve the imperial purple more than Bassianus [husband of Constantine's sister, Anastasia, and according to one source was included in a proposal to Licinius to be Constantine's successor apparently because Crispus was too young to be sole emperor]. Constantine's brother-in-law was expendable and vulnerable: through Constantine's proposal, he had become a potential rival to the emperor's sons." Bassianus was killed on the charge that Licinius had persuaded him to assassinate Constantine.[36] After promising clemency to his other brother-in-law, Licinius, who had been co-emperor until Constantine defeated him, Constantine had him killed in 325 A.D., under the guise that Licinius was planning a coup. In 326 he killed his son, Crispus, who Eusebius spoke so highly of, and who was the son of Minervina, whose marital status is unsure (some call her his concubine). Crispus had been instrumental in the defeat of Licinius. After Constantine executed Crispus, Eusebius removed Crispus from the above quote (in all respects like to his pious father) with nary a word in the fourth edition of the History of the Church.[37] He also killed his eleven year old nephew, Licicianus, Licinius' son. There is no related story of a brewing coup. Next he killed his wife Fausta, the mother of Crispus' half brothers. In view of the lack of details of any motives from the historians these were apparently murders performed without trial (except for Crispus who possibly received one) motivated by desires to protect and expand his power, or to prevent embarrassment regarding his marital situation and the status of his children. [38]

"Constantine reversed Diocletian's ban on the sale of children."[39] In 321 A.D., Constantine issued a constitution prohibiting legal proceedings on "'the day celebrated by the veneration of the sun.'"[40] Sol Invictus, the unconquered sun god, figured large in the coinage of Constantine, even past the time of the Nice Council.[41] "This god is represented standing with his crown of rays, a globe which he holds in his left hand; whilst with his right he places a crown on the head of Constantine...." Some authorities such as Spanheim excuse this on the ground that the mints just had not caught up. "The fact is, however, that, with the exception of the In hoc sig. vic. legend of a doubtful medallion, all the epigraphs and types of the artful, cautious, and anything but pious or humane Constantine are drawn from heathen mythology, not from Christian theology. And, accordingly, we see on his medals the Sun represented as the Guide, Protector, and even Colleague of the emperor with the inscription SOLI INVICTO...."[42] However, late in Constantine's reign, 336-7, a gold coin was struck in Antioch with the variant christogram of a vertical cross with a superimposed P or flag. Thus, if the original christogram had an X with the superimposed P, the X had been rotated to a vertical cross so that the superimposed P caused the image to now be a hybrid Tau with the circle being to the right side. The legend on the coin read "VICTORIACO NSTANTINIAVG" or victory in Constantine I Augustus.[43] In Roman pagan mythology the dragon was the animal of the sun.[44] In more ancient Rome dragons appeared on top of war helmets, apparently in tribute to the god, Sol, and their ideal of glorious victory in battle.[45] When Constantius II entered Rome historians tell us his Draconarius, a military officer, wore a vexillum with the image of a dragon, a draco, woven into it as an ensign.[46] Here is the dragon of Isaiah and Revelation.

In a second council of Nicaea in 327 Arius was reinstated. In 333, however, Constantine personally excommunicated him in a scathing letter in which he called Arius a dishonest fool and the mouthpiece of Satan.[47] The man who called himself the 13th apostle seemed to have little regard for the authority of the church to make the decision to excommunicate. In 335 Arius was again readmitted to the eastern church by the Council of Jerusalem.[48]

After moving the capital of the empire from Rome to Constantinople, "Constantine also set up a statue of himself on his porphyry column vested as Apollo or Sol, and wearing the rayed crown of the sun-god." [49] "The Forum of Constantine was elliptical in form, paved throughout and surrounded by a colonnade. There was a spacious portico at each end, along which were pagan statues of the ancient gods, while at the end was a triumphal arch. Near the center was the lofty column on the top of which stood the statue of Constantine...."[50] Constantine's excuse for decorating Constantinople with pagan statues was that he upheld religious toleration. However, in 333 A.D., he passed a law which branded Arians as Porphyrians and imposed the death penalty on anyone who failed to burn Arius' books.[51] This was clearly in response to Arius' 333 letter to Constantine in which he posited that the Son is of a different substance to the Father. As a result as with so many other things, we have only the establishment's version of Arius' works and views. The 333 law also proscribed every layman who refused to rejoin the Catholic church peaceably with ten capita added to his census assessment. Clerics who communed with Arius were to perform public liturgies.[52] Constantine's view was clearly that if flattery didn't work on Arius, resort to coercion!

Only when Constantine became sick, which a trip to Prepanum failed to cure, did he seek baptism in 337 in order to obtain purification from his sins before he died that year.[53] "To be numbered publicly among one of the groups of penitents would involve a degree of ignominy and shame inconceivable for the emperor who, even more than his predecessors, had surrounded himself with Oriental pomp, and had presented the appearance before his subjects of one more than human, almost divine."[54] History shows that above all things Constantine was ambitious for and loved power, and that his actions were more motivated by political expediency than Christian piety. The historian, Will Durant, summed up Constantine's reign in this manner: "In his [Constantine's] Gallic court he had surrounded himself with pagan scholars and philosophers. After his conversion he seldom conformed to the ceremonial requirements of Christian worship. His letters to Christian bishops make it clear that he cared little for the theological differences that agitated Christendom - though he was willing to suppress dissent in the interests of imperial unity. Throughout his reign he treated the bishops as his political aides; he summoned them, presided over their counsels, and agreed to enforce whatever opinion their majority should formulate. A real believer would have been a Christian first and a statesman afterward; with Constantine it was the reverse. Christianity was to him a means, not an end."[55]

The 4th century writer Epiphanius concluded that a spirit of Satan entered Arius.[56] However, after reviewing the evidence it appears much more likely that this spirit entered Constantine. In fact "Constantine described himself as 'bishop of those outside the church.' He always remained, however, Pontifex Maximus: the first emperor to reject this was Gratian."[57] Originally, the Pontifex Maximus [supreme pontiff] was the chief pagan priest of the Roman people, and selected the rex sacrorum or king of the sacrifices, the vestal virgins, and flamines.[58] The people elected the first Roman emperors as their Pontifex Maximus. Thus, during the whole of his reign, Constantine was ordained as a pagan priest rather than as a Christian, having not been baptized until his death. Constantine surely did more than any man since Jesus to single-handedly change the face of Christianity. Paul said: "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them." The Acts 20:29-30. Do not mistake, however, that these words place a stamp of complete approval on Arius. His desire to stand by the scriptures was admirable (even he may have wavered in order to be reinstated in the Church), but it apparently was not in God's plans for the complete truth to be known at the time. Remember that the Nicene creed did not talk about the consubstantiality of the Holy Spirit. For decades much of eastern orthodoxy did not accept the consubstantiality of the Son nor the trinity in the same way meant by the West. Other doctrines introduced by the western Church were foreign to the eastern Church until the thirteenth century.

Chapter 4

Most of the "Christian" world has experienced a lifelong indoctrination in the trinity. We must remind ourselves of the source of fear for it is a spiritual law to always flow against fear because truth is to be found on the other side whether complete or partial. Protestant and Catholic "Christians" will be challenged to support their indoctrination of the trinity with even one tittle of God's law. Jesus did not teach the trinity and it is not found in the gospel. It came from the Nicene council, and one called the father of the Catholic Church, Tertullian. It was later solidified by Augustine.

This is where Revelation comes into focus: Rome is the seven-headed beast of Revelation 13. The number of the beast is 666 or "the number of a man", Revelation 13:18, "or the number of his name", Revelation 13:17. One of the official Latin titles of the bishop of Rome is Vicarius Filii Dei or the Vicar of the Son of God. Inscribed over an entrance to the Vatican is "VICARIUS FIILIO DEIO." [1]

V = 5 (I, V or U, X, L, C, D, & M are roman numerals) V = 5
I = 1 I = 1
C = 100 C = 100
A = 0 (some letters have no roman numerical value) A = 0
R = 0 R = 0
I = 1 I = 1
U = 5 (U and V = 5 IN ROMAN NUMERALS) U = 5
S = 0 S = 0
F = 0 F = 0
I = 1 I = 1
L = 50 I = 1
I = 1 L = 50
I = 1 I = 1
O = 0
D = 500
E = 0 D = 500
I = 1 E = 0
666 I = 1
O = 0

This particular title is not used in print by the Catholic Church after it was pointed out by Protestants that it equals 666. This is a man who has received riches of gold as his measure. Note that in one year king Solomon of Israel received 666 talents of gold. 1 Kings 10:14. He turned his heart from the Lord and followed strange gods. Pope Julius II turned the Roman bishop's tiara, a triple crown, into a richly jeweled gold piece of art work representing his worldly kingdom, which apparently can be seen in the British Museum.[2] The tiara has had the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei on it.[3] The bishop of Rome now rarely uses the tiara, but now wears a much more modest looking cloth hat to represent the same thing.

The gospel contains many parallels. Many things in the Old Testament books have been fulfilled. Further, their authorship, especially including use of symbols, reveals the penmenship of one mighty Hand, when comparing them to new books. Revelation 13 & 17 contain the New Testament parallels to Daniel 2 & 7. Using prophetic symbols revealed in Daniel 2 & 7, you will find that beasts are countries or kingdoms (these great beasts... are four kings. Daniel 7:17; the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom. Daniel 7:23). Horns are ruling kings/offices (the ten horns...are ten kings. Daniel 7:24). The great dragon is the devil. Revelation 12:9. The great red dragon had seven heads, ten horns, and seven crowns. Revelation 12: 3. The first beast of Revelation 13 rises out of the sea (Psalms 98:7 Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein; Revelation 17:15), and has three animal references: like unto a leopard (Greece), feet of a bear (Media/Persia) and mouth of a lion (Babylon). These same animal symbols are identified as separate kingdoms/beasts in Daniel 7:4-8. These three geographic areas all became part of the Roman Empire (1 kingdom/beast), which absorbed their Hellenistic culture.

The first beast of Revelation 13 has ten horns with ten crowns which represent the 10 divisions of the Roman Empire at the time it was broken up and the bishop of Rome gained political power in 538 A.D. The 10 Teutonic tribes/divisions which sacked Rome and divided the Empire are: the Visigoths, Vandals, Lombards (Lombardy), Franks (France), Suevi/Alamanni, Gepidae, Saxons (although Saxony was not in the Roman Empire but the Holy Roman Empire), Burgundians (Bergundy), Ostrogoths, and the Heruli who were all prophesied in Daniel 7:8 (the 10 horned beast with iron teeth which subdued/ encompassed the lion, bear and leopard). This beast also has seven heads, but ten crowns. Revelation 13: 1. "...And the dragon gave him his power, and his seat and great authority." Revelation 13:2. This beast is like unto the dragon, and takes his shape and power from the dragon.

After Rome was first sacked by king Alaric and the Visigoths in 410 A.D. (who spared the churches), the western emperors immediately sought an uneasy alliance with the tribes, especially the Franks and Goths.[4] The Vandals and Suevi were the first to sign a treaty in 411 A.D., by which they became foederati of the empire. In 416 the Visigoths were hired to reclaim Spain from the Vandals and the Suevi.[5] The Franks and Alemanni were a coalition of several tribes which moved into what is now France. The Goths were a large family of tribes which had moved into Asia, but were forced west by the Huns: the Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Heruli, Gepidae, and perhaps the Rugii. Most of the Goths were converted to the Arian faith of Christianity by Ulfilas (Wulfila) who translated the Bible into Gothic (Runic forms) for them, and it was called the Codex Argenteus.[6] By 450 A.D. the situation in the western empire had vastly changed. The pagan Franks were in the north (Gaul/France), the Arian Bergundians in the east (may have become Arian under Gundobad about 470), and the Arian Goths/Visigoths in southwest Europe or Spain. The Visigoths had been hired by Rome to boot the Vandals and Suevi out of Spain, although the Suevi held onto northwest Spain/Portugal for awhile. North Africa, excluding Egypt, had been conquered by the remaining Arian Vandals under their king, Gaiseric (Genseric). Britain was lost to the Saxons who apparently left Saxony in such great numbers that the Thuringii were able to move in. Much of Spain still belonged to the Suevi, who eventually were overcome by the Visigothic kingdom and intermarried with the Alemanni, a federation of Suevian tribes which had largely stayed in their Germanic homeland, although some invaded with the Franks.[7] The Visigoths eventually settled in the area of Segovia in Old Castile, which is now the center of Gothic Spain. According to the Roman historian, Gibbon, the Roman alliance grew until it included Rugii, Heruli, Thuringians, Franks, Bergundians, Gepidae, Ostrogoths, Visigoths, and Alani. The Alani were a non-Germanic race of Tartars who were either captured by the Huns, or fleeing the Huns, became Germanized. Some joined the Vandals after Alaric invaded Spain. Some of the Gothic tribes, especially the Ostrogoths and Gepidae, were temporarily also subjugated to Attila and his Huns.

When Attila, king of the Huns, attacked, the Roman alliance repelled him at Chalons in 451 A.D., in one of the greatest single battles of all time with perhaps more than a million men on the field of battle. Apparently some Teutons were serving both sides in the battle. Attila was apparently only turned away from sacking Rome by the convincing of the bishop of Rome, Leo I. This was not a Catholic miracle, but probably mainly the result of offering princess Honoria as a dowry.[8] Attila died within a year or two with his new wife in bed, and the Teutons in his camp defected under Adaric to join the free Teutons. This was the end of the alliance with the tribes, which had lasted about 41 years(1 hour, see 2 Peter 3:8). The western empire of Rome was now falling apart from within - in 454 and 455 two emperors were murdered through intrigue. The end of the alliance cleared the way for the sack of Rome by the Vandals in 455 A.D., who were probably the least tolerant of the Catholic faith - thus, the infamy of their name being attached to robbers. They did make a deplorable habit of raiding. In the mean time the aforementioned Adaric, king of the Gepidae, led a federation of mostly Gepids against the Huns, defeating them. Most of the Huns fled back east out of the Empire. The Gepidae moved into the territory in the northeastern Roman empire known as Dacia or now Hungary, and became a great tribal nation until the Avars began to raid in vast numbers in the next century.[9]

The power vacuum back in Italy was filled around 475 A.D. by Odovacar/ Odoacer, king of the Arian Heruli, who through the combined strength of the Heruli and Rugii who elected him King of Italy, was able to maintain a kingdom in Italy until defeated by Theodoric and his Ostrogoths in 489. Although Odoacer did not persecute Catholics, he reserved the right to approve the choice of the Bishop of Rome. He invaded the Rugii to the north of the Alps and eliminated all Rugii who would not pledge allegiance to his rule. The remnant fled back across the Danube. He killed their king, Fava, in cold blood after bringing him back to Rome.[10] Thus, the Rugii never established a kingdom in the Roman Empire. Some historians call Odovacar king of the Rugii, but this is probably a misnomer since there is no real evidence that he was Rugian, and he persecuted the Rugii. He may, however, have taken the title as one of his own since he viewed himself as their conqueror.

Thus, we see that the Roman empire fell to this light-skinned, fair-haired race from the north - from the area of Germany, Denmark, and Scandinavia. To be sure, there were other Teutonic tribes other than the ones I discuss. However, some had invaded or been conquered by the Empire centuries earlier only to be defeated or absorbed into the population without establishing their own kingdom. The Goths had grown too populous for the northern lands, so some left the homeland just after the time of Christ. Avoiding the strong Roman empire to the south, tested to their misfortune by other Teutons, they moved east, and grew powerful around the Black Sea until the Huns came. Thus, Teutons surrounded the northern Empire, and through their invasions, eventually spread themselves all over Europe, playing a major role in modern Europe and America. They invade as if one, but once the Empire is subjugated, they easily turn on one another. Others, such as the Thuringii stayed home in their native north Germany or Scandinavia, and thus did not take part in dividing up the Roman kingdom. As we shall see out of the milieu of the ten new kingdoms of the western Roman Empire, the bishop of Rome arises as a king in his own domain.

In Daniel 7 we find "... in this [little] horn were eyes like the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking great things." Daniel 7:8. The bishop of Rome did not care for the Arian invasion. On the criterion that the Roman bishop received the primacy of the Apostle Peter, Leo I (440-461) induced the eastern emperor, Valentian III, to order the whole western church to obey the bishop of Rome.[11] At the Council of Chalcedon in 451 Leo's legate, Paschasinus, calls Leo "'the pope [episkopos] of the city of Rome which is the head of all the Churches... If the city of Rome - that is, the Church of that city - is the head of all the other particular Churches, the same should be said of the bishop of that city. It is a short step from 'head of all the churches' to 'bishop of all the Churches.' In fact the legates refer to the bishop of Rome as 'archbishop of all the Churches,' which is found in the Greek version of the Acts at the start of the fourth session, while the Latin translation says 'pope of the universal Church.'"[12] Such was the flattering argument of the papal legate.

The little horn which rises among the 10 horns (Daniel 7:8) subdues three kings (Daniel 7:24). In other words "there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots." Daniel 7:8. Under king Theodoric "the Great" the Arian Ostrogoths conquered Italy in 489, and ruled beneficially for approximately thirty years.[13] The Roman church assisted Theodoric in his Italian campaign, and although I have found no evidence that the church induced him, the pattern of concerted assistance the church afforded to Theodoric evidences that the bishops had foreknowledge of his coming. The eastern emperor, Zeno, may have asked the bishop of Rome if he could send the vast horde of Ostrogoths to Italy, because he deposed Odoacer as patrician of Rome, and invested Theodoric with the title. Theodoric had apparently grown so powerful that the eastern emperor, Zeno, promised him a western empire if Theodoric would take Italy. In any event news of the Ostrogothic attack obviously reached Rome before the arrival of the Ostrogoths. When Odovacar left Rome and traveled north to fight Theodoric's Ostrogoths, the authorities in Rome (the bishop) closed the gates behind him - a seemingly unwise act unless the bishop of Rome expected Odovacar would not return. "Without asserting that Theodoric owed all his success to the Church, the facts show pretty clearly that she afforded him- Arian though he was, like Odovacar [Odoacer] - valuable assistance. It was Bishop Laurentius who opened for him the gates of Milan and it was he who, after the treason of Tufa, held for him that important city; Epiphanius bishop of Pavia acted in a similar fashion. In a letter written in 492, Pope Gelasius takes credit to himself for having resisted the orders of Odovacar and finally it was another bishop, John of Ravenna, who induced Odovacar to treat [a banquet where Theodoric killed him]."[14] Thus, the Herule kingdom of Italy disappeared from history. After the Lombards migrated the northern Heruli disappeared from history as well.[15] During Theodoric's reign cities such as Venice were started under his benevolent rule. He, however, demanded that the Roman Catholics pay back or rebuild the Jewish homes and synagogues they destroyed.[16]

By 518 A.D. eastern orthodoxy was seen as ripe for a fresh approach by the Roman bishop. An Arian emperor, Anastasius, had passed away in his palace at age 88 (due to being struck by lightning according the Catholic chronicle Liber pontificalis or Lives of the pontiffs). Anastasius left a large government reserve, which Procopius estimated at 320 thousand pounds of gold, even though he abolished the unpopular chrysargyron - a gold tax instituted by Constantine (Anastasius replaced it with a new gold tax, the chrysoteleia, upon land owners).[17] A Catholic viewpoint of what then transpired is offered by Hartmann Grisar. "His successor was the Emperor Justin I. [a Catholic], whose disposition was more conciliatory, who saw the need and the urgent desire of the people for union, and who was anxious not to oppose it. As a matter of fact, this craving of the Faithful for the restoration of peace was already bursting the political barriers. Through the intermediary of Gratus, a Comes of the Imperial consistory, written requests of the new sovereign, of his nephew Justinian, and John II., the Patriarch of Byzantium, were presented to Hormisdas, praying him to come personally to the East to establish peace, or at least to despatch legates with conditions of peace and full powers for its conclusion." So Hormisdas, the bishop of Rome, first sought the advice of the Arian king Theodoric, and then sent envoys to Constantinople. Grisar continues: "The envoys from Hormisdas brought to Constantinople a formulary (libellus) by signing which the schismatics would show their submission to the See of Peter, and secure their re-incorporation in the Catholic Church. This famous formula Hormisdae had been drafted some years previously, and had been submitted and accepted in the provinces of Illyricum and in Spain. The Formula of union was now to triumph entirely."

All names of Acacians, Arians and other objectionable persons were removed from the diptychs without objection from the Greeks. In the eyes of the Italian Romans: "the Greeks no longer desired any cloak for heresy, now that they sincerely wished to forswear the heresy itself. In Constantinople, John II., the Patriarch, subscribed to the formula on Maundy Thursday, March 28 [519]. On this occasion a special synod met in the Imperial Palace. 'I look on God's holy Churches.' John adds, in writing, 'that of Old Rome and that of New Rome [Constantinople], as one and the same Church. I regard the See of the Apostle Peter and See of Byzantium as one and the same.... I agree with the Pope in confession of doctrine, and reject all those whom he rejects.' The Emperor, the Senate, and all present testified their approval and consent by loud applause." Justin caused the Senate to approve the measure.[18] All the bishops in the Greek remnant of the Roman Empire were asked to assent to the formula of Hormisdas, but the bishops of Alexandria and Antioch held out, thus, being considered "heretical" or "weak and impotent."

The altar of St. Peter's in Rome bore eloquent witness in the multitude of its Greek votive offerings to the settlement now happily secured. The Emperor and the Imperial family, including Justinian, the future Emperor, as well as the Patriarch and many other people of note, sent valuable gifts in precious metal to be exposed at the tomb of the Prince of the Apostles. During the Pontificate of Hormisdas, Theodoric, King of the Goths, also presented two silver candelabra, each weighing seventy pounds, to the tomb of Peter. From Chlodovec, King of the Franks, who had rejoiced all Catholics by joining the Church, a richly jewelled crown came after his death (511) as a gift to St. Peter. [19]

In 523 the eastern emperor, Justin, proscribed Arianism throughout the Empire, and began to persecute Arians in the East.[20] In response "Theodoric sent a delegation to Constantinople headed by the Bishop of Rome to secure the annulment of the anti-Arian decree. Although Justin apparently agreed to this, Theodoric was angered by the favor shown the pope by the emperor, which emphasized the solidarity of eastern and western orthodoxy."[21] In 526 according to a Catholic priest "there [in Constantinople] an honourable reception on the part of the Catholic capital of the East and the Court formed a brilliant contrast to the treatment just experienced. The news spread like wild-fire through the delighted and excited city that the Pope [John] was arriving, the first of Peter's successors to tread the soil of Constantinople. The distinguished guest was met at a distance of twelve Roman miles from the walls of the city, the people and clergy receiving him in solemn procession with crosses and candles. The emperor too, on meeting him, prostrated himself, honouring him, says our authority, as though he had been Peter himself. ...During the stay in Constantinople John performed the religious ceremony of crowning the Emperor. At Easter, on April 19, he publicly celebrated the liturgy in the Latin language, and during the ceremony took precedence in rank over the Patriarch [bishop] of the capitol."[22] Upon his return bishop John published a "furious epistle to the bishops of Italy calling on them to oppress and extirpate the Arian perfidy." Theodoric jailed him.[23] In catholic eyes John quickly expired in prison a martyr due to Theodoric who was then considered a despot.

In summation the path for Constantinople had been set by the bishop of Rome. "The way was paved for the reconquest of the Roman West by a reconciliation with the Roman bishop Hormisdas, as a result of which [western] orthodoxy was once more formally established at Constantinople and persecution of ... heretics was inaugurated in the eastern Empire (519). Although this ecclesiastical union with Rome was brought about while the influence of Vitalian was predominant, it had the cordial support of Justinian (527), who recognized that the good will of the clergy and the Roman population of the western provinces would be won for the eastern emperor in this way [deliverance of western orthodoxy from Arian domination]."[24] Theodoric saw what was happening, and the policy being pursued. The eastern emperors had continued the policy of reconciliation with the bishop of Rome in order to gain assistance of the Roman Catholics in subduing all the western Arian kingdoms under the rule of Constantinople. In return the Roman See was gaining the emperor's sanction of Roman ecclesiastical domination of all the East.

The next Arian kingdom to fall after the Heruli was the North African Arian kingdom of the Vandals which was eliminated by the arms of the eastern emperor, Justinian. As a tribe, the Vandals disappeared from history. The Roman bishop was to give his continued cooperation to emperor Justinian to throw the Ostrogoths out of Rome. The campaigns started in 535 A.D. In the campaigns after Theodoric's death the Ostrogoths were initially defeated, and the troops of Justinian took control of Rome. Before the Ostrogoths had been fully vanquished from Italy, the imperial commander, Belisarius, deposed bishop Silverius, who sympathized with the Goths. At the orders of emperor Justinian, Belisarius installed a pro-eastern bishop, Vigilius, who was ordained in 537. By this means Justinian was fulfilling his motto of "one state, one law, and one church."[25] The Ostrogoths laid siege to Rome, which was now cooperating with Justinian under the new bishop, Vigilius.[26] The bishop took possession of Rome in 538 A.D., when the eastern emperor, Justinian, decreed the Roman bishop should be the head of all the "Christian" churches. The goal of the Roman bishop was realized. Rome was made a duchy of the Eastern Empire. This was the beginning of the bishop's political power. Revelation 13:2: "... and the Dragon [devil] gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority." The Ostrogoths and their new leader, Totila, fought mainly fellow Teutonic mercenaries hired by Constantinople, but Totila eventually capitulated and was killed. His successor was killed in a last-stand battle, but the remnant of the Ostrogoths were able to negotiate a truce with Narses, the Roman commander, and disappeared over the Alps to assimilate into other Teutonic tribes.[27] Thus, the Heruli, Vandals, and Ostrogoths were defeated due to the persuasion and influence of the Roman bishop, and became the first 3 horns/kings plucked up before the little horn of Daniel 7. They were plucked up by the roots, and disappeared from history. It is also noteworthy that each of these three had desired the wealth of Rome. The little horn or bishop of Rome gained political control of Rome.

At about the same time the Lombards moved into an area just north of Dacia in northern Hungary and began battling the Gepidae. By 567 the Lombards, who had come out of Sweden, were finding the Avars to be a threat to their existence. So probably in an exchange for leaving the land in safety, they formed an alliance with the Avars against their enemies, the Gepidae, who were soundly defeated, and fell from history. They were apparently absorbed into the peoples of Romania. King Alboin killed the Gepid King Cunimund, and married his daughter princess Rosamund. The Lombards moved to Italy, and found the rich land in northern Italy mostly denuded of people through war, famine, and plagues. They set up a small kingdom here known as Lombardy, and had some successful expansive campaigns. Although history is unclear, they too probably mostly became Arians judging from the fact that works of Arius were later burned by the Catholics. One king in particular, King Rothari of Brescia of the house of Arod (636-652), has been noted to favor Arius.[28]

In 695 the Council of Toledo voted to enslave all Jewish adults, and take their children to Catholic homes. The Muslim Arabs had recently taken Carthage, Africa, and therefore, the Jews wrote the Arabs for their assistance. Although the Muslim Saracens were defeated by the Byzantines they subsequently converted the Moors to Islam, and the newly converted Moors answered the call to Spain. They defeated the Visigoths, and then invaded southern France. Thus, the Visigothic kingdom was effectively overthrown but not plucked up.[29]

In 754 A.D. the Roman bishop granted the title of patrician to Pepin the Short, king of the Franks in exchange for defeating the Lombards. The land holdings won in north and central Italy became the basis for the church's vast temporal empire, and was the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire, which was officially inaugurated under Pepin's son, Charlemagne. Again, most of the tribes were Arian (so named by the Catholic church after Arius) Christians, and did not recognize the trinity.[30]

The remaining verses of Revelation 13 are interpreted thus: "And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed." Revelation 13:3. Remember, one of the heads has the little horn. "...The beast... had the wound by a sword, and did live." Revelation 13:14. The Roman pontiff was captured by Napoleon's general, Berthier, on February 15, 1798 A.D., after arriving at Rome on February 9, 1798.[31] This was exactly 1260 years after 538 A.D., when the eastern emperor made the Roman bishop the head of all Christendom, during which time, the woman with a crown of 12 stars which had given birth to the man-child (the Church and Jesus) fled into the wilderness 1200 and three score (3 X 20) "days." Revelation 12:1-6. Prophetically, each day stands for a year. Nos. 14:34. Ezekiel 4:6. The deadly wound was healed when the church again gained autonomy in 1929 by the Vatican City becoming an independent state.

Here's how the stage was set for the deadly wound. Martin Luther, a German parish priest, sought to reform the church when he found his parishioners crossing the river to buy letters of indulgence bearing the name of the pope. Purchasers were told that not only were they relieved of the temporal consequences of their sins, but the souls of their grandparents were released from purgatory. It was later learned "that some of these funds were designed to service the debt of the large fee imposed by the pope on Margrave Albrecht of Brandenburg as the price of allowing him to combine the archbishopric of Mainz with the archbishopric of Magdeburg." In response Luther authored 95 theses in October 1517.[32] Apparently, however, the majority of the funds went towards the building of the Vatican and the new St. Peter's Basilica. Martin Luther declared "I have sought nothing beyond reforming the church in conformity with the Holy Scriptures. The spiritual powers have been not only corrupted by sin, but absolutely destroyed; so that there is now nothing in them but a depraved reason and a will that is the enemy and opponent of God. I simply say that Christianity has ceased to exist among those who should have preserved it." However, the church would not be reformed. In 1521 Luther was summoned before the Council of Worms where he declared: "Unless I am convicted by scripture and plain reason - I do not accept the authority of popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other - my conscience is captive to the word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe.... Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise."[33] Knowing that the church wasn't true, people began to leave in droves to form new churches. "In France, England, and the Netherlands, hundreds of common people, women as well as men, were content to be burnt alive for their newly acquired Protestant beliefs."[34]

At the time of the Roman bishop's capture in 1798, he was declared deposed. He was taken to France where he died at Valence on August 29, 1799. The pope's 1260 years of political power had come to an end. Although a new bishop was elected by 1800, the church had lost its papal state to Napolean. Under the Concordat of 1801, Pius VII seceded many political rights to Napolean who again occupied Rome in 1808, declaring the bishop's temporal power to be defunct.[35] In the meanwhile the Protestant religions continued to gain recruits. "In Spain in 1846 thirty-eight out of fifty-nine dioceses had no bishop; monasteries and even church buildings were often to be found lying empty and looted; the priests were in a state of impoverishment. In Italy, two years later, Pope Pius IX fled in disguise from the city of Rome after a mob fired upon his palace and killed a monsignor standing near him at a window; the Jesuits quietly evacuated the city to avoid riots against them."[36] So indeed the Roman Church did receive a deadly wound, yet as prophesied, it was healed.

"And they worshiped the dragon [the Devil's tool, the emperor, the son of a god] which gave power unto the beast: and they worshiped the beast...." Revelation 13:4. The Roman sun-god, Sol or Apollo, became the most venerated god, even under Constantine. Remember, in Roman mythology the dragon was the animal of the sun and the ensign of the emperor. [for Apollo & dragon see, e.g. Aelian, De Nat. Animalium, xi.2 (ed. Hercher, 1864, 270)]. In Revelation 12 the seven headed beast was in the form of a dragon. Remember, that the dragon had seven crowns instead of ten crowns. The first seven emperors of Rome are discussed herein below as to how they fulfill prophecy. The beast of Revelation 13:1 had ten crowns. These are the ten kings of the tribes that divide up the western Roman empire, and are eventually defeated or converted to Roman Catholicism.

The Roman bishop rises as another horn during the same time period, and represented not only a kingdom but an object of worship/adoration. Before the fifth century the bishop of Rome was on an equal plane with the other bishops until Nicaea, when he was declared equal to the bishop of Alexandria and the bishop of Antioch. "...This has been pointed out several times by historians - a Church's apostolic origin was a far too common factor in the East to have had the importance it acquired in the West where the Roman See was the only apostolic see and the main center from which evangelization spread."[37] With the desire of orthodoxy to fight Arianism, the richest churches apparently desired to solidify the power their positions had bestowed in the eyes of the Roman government: "Canon VI [of 325 Council of Nicaea] The Bishop of Alexandria shall have jurisdiction over Egypt, Libya, and Pentapolis [S. Libya]. As also the Roman Bishop over those subject to Rome. So, too, the Bishop of Antioch and the rest over those who are under them...."[38] "Catholic historians, however, are often disturbed by this equality proclaimed between Rome and Alexandria by the Council of Nicaea, for, indeed, Rome is referred to as an example, not as a source of authority. This equality, according to them, applies only to the patriarchal privileges of the Roman See and not to its universal primacy."[39] If indeed the Roman church had always enjoyed a primacy, why were later attempts of the Roman pontiff for the eastern bishops to pledge an oath to him not recognized? In truth the Roman bishop was able to fill a power vacuum over time to become the head of the Roman Catholic Church, and for a time, venerated by all Christendom including the East. When the Muslims invaded the East, however, the Roman pontiff was able to increase his power immensely.

"And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months." Revelation 13:5. Under the 27 propositions found in Dictatus Papae, (some call the "Dictates of Hildebrand") pontiff Gregory VII (1073-1085) asserted: "1. The Roman church was founded by the Lord alone. 2. Only the Roman Pontiff deserves to be called universal. 7. He alone may, as circumstances require, establish new laws... 9. The pope is the only man whose feet all princes are bound to kiss. 18. His sentence may not be varied by anyone and he may by himself vary those given by everyone. 19. He may not be judged by anyone. 20. No one may condemn a decision of the Holy See. 22. The Roman Church has never erred and, as Scripture shows, can never err."[40] Like the emperors before him, the pope gets his feet kissed by all his subordinates. However, Jesus removed his clothing, and girded himself with a towel with which he washed the feet of his apostles. The pope claims infallibility. Something none of the biblical prophets did. Even Moses was rebuked for breaking the tablets. The pope's namesake, Peter, denied Jesus three times. Pius IX convened the first Vatican Council which proclaimed the dogma of papal infallibility. In the 9th century "the body of Pope Formosus... was disinterred by his successor, Stephen VI(VII), and subjected to trial [for being ambitious and usurping the office of pope while yet a bishop], after which it was thrown into the Tiber [river]."[41] One of them had to be wrong! If popes declare matters of doctrine which are later declared to be wrong, then the Roman Church declares them anti-popes. Thus, there are a number of anti-popes in the history of the Roman Church for this reason (most others were anti-popes because their appointments were unauthorized by the Church, but made by emperors).

The little horn of Daniel "shall speak great words against the most High (note the parallelism to Revelation 13:5,6), and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time [one year or 360 biblical days] and times [2 prophetic years] and the dividing of time [1/2 of prophetic year]." Daniel 7:25. (See Daniel 4; 3 1/2 X 360 = 1260 days or 1260 years!). In Revelation "...power was given unto him to continue forty and two months." Revelation 13:5. Forty two months equals 3 1/2 years or 1260 biblical days! Gregory XII, the bishop of Rome, even changed the calendar to include some extra days and a leap year so that now our calendar year has 365 days by the Gregorian calendar. I am not faulting the change, but the biblical calendar had 360 days.

"The Pope has power to change times, to abrogate [change] laws, and to dispense with all things, even the precepts of Christ."[42] The church did not stop with the doctrine of the trinity. The number of laws set forth by Christ and changed by doctrines of church councils is significant. At first there was no pope. At first there were apostles. It was not illegal to replace apostles. Matthias, Paul and Barnabus were replacements. Acts 1:26,13:2,14:14. The bishop of Rome or pope claims to be the successor of Peter. Peter was not a pope. He was an apostle. Bishops held a different office than apostles. The office of a bishop is spelled out in 1 Timothy 3:1-10, including the fact that they should be married. As an apostle, Peter was married. "And when Jesus was come into Peter's house, he saw his wife's mother laid, and sick with a fever. And he touched her hand, and the fever left her...." Matthew 8:14-15. "Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write... thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars." Revelation 2:1-2.

What happened to the structure of Christ's church? Note what happened after the apostles were martyred. After two more centuries of the most rigorous persecution and martyrdom "the Council of Nicea set its seal on the structure that had thus come into being: a network of urban bishoprics, grouped into provinces headed by a metropolitan bishop, usually in the capital city of the civil province."[43] Eventually the other two bishoprics the council declared equal to the bishop of Rome in canon six, Alexandria and Antioch, were overcome in Muslim invasions, leaving the bishop of Rome to claim supreme authority with only the newer see of Constantinople (unrecognized by the Council of Nicaea) to challenge him.

The first thing the council did was form the doctrine of the trinity, although the use of the word "trinity" later arose with Augustine. "The council held under him [Constantine] at Nicaea in 325 enacted an agreement with the emperor's support. But its formula of the Son's 'consubstantiality' with the Father was slow to gain general acceptance, despite Constantine's efforts to impose it."[44] Later councils came up with new doctrines. Mary, as the mother of Jesus, was given an altar as the mother of God, which is in all the Catholic churches. Praying the right prayers in front of her image is said to bring forgiveness of sins. Hence arose legends such as the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Lay Catholics came to believe that simply wearing the Brown Scapular at the moment of death was a sure guarantee of achieving salvation and avoiding the pain of Hell. In 1322 pontiff John XXII published a bull in which he described Mary appearing to him and declaring that those who died wearing the Brown Scapular received the promise "that in the case of such a person she herself would descend into Purgatory on the Saturday after that person's death and set that person's soul free, that is, take the soul to Heaven."[45]

The Catholic Church maintains that for Mary to intercede on behalf of human beings they must adhere to the Catholic faith. Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII on the Rosary Sept. 8, 1894: "11. Now may God, 'Who in His most merciful Providence gave us this Mediatrix,' and 'decreed that all good shall come to us by the hands of Mary' (St. Bernard), receive propitiously our common prayers and fulfill our common hopes."[46] It has been alleged Francis of Asisium had a vision showing the mediating power of Mary.

St. Francis of Asisium, observed in a heavenly vision, two ladders resembling that of Jacob, which touched both heaven and earth, with their extremities. Above the one, appeared our Lord; above the other, his most holy mother. Then he beheld a number of his brethren striving to ascend to heaven by the steps of the ladder, where our dear Saviour appeared; but they all, after having ascended some steps, some more, and some less, dazzled by the glory and majesty of the God of virtues, were obliged to descend, without being able to advance: which having remarked, this saint exhorted his children to have recourse to the mother of God. They did so, and all were admitted into the presence of God, and saved by the all powerful interest of her, who has never abandoned those who have placed a firm and solid confidence in her.[47]

However, Jesus tells us that no man can come unto the Father except by Him. He is our mediator - not Mary. Mary declared "My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour" from which all good comes. Luke 1:46-47. She did not hold the priesthood as not even her husband, Joseph, was a priesthood holder, and therefore, she was incapable of being a mediatrix under God's law. The law tells us: "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." 1 Timothy 2:5.

With the man-made doctrines grew the man-made office. "Thus, originally 'Pope' was not the name of an office, although we have come to think of it that way. It was a title of respect, and the office to which that title became attached was the Bishopric of Rome."[48] "For the idea of the papal office grew. As we have seen, it certainly did not spring ready-formed from the pages of the Gospels. Papal authority as it is now exercised, with its accompanying doctrine of papal infallibility, cannot be found in theories about the papal role expressed by early Popes and other Christians during the first 500 years of Christianity."[49]

No one can deny that in the early church baptism was by immersion. People can still visit the sites of these baptismal baths. A picture of an ancient baptismal font with three declining steps can be viewed in Glay, Voisin, & Bohec. A History of Rome (Blackwell Publ.; Camb., Mass. 1996), p.528. The Lateran Baptistry in Rome once had a circular basin used for baptism by immersion.[50] Jesus was baptized in the Jordan river without "holy water" and other pagan mutations. Symbolically, through our birth people are born into the sea of the world, but through Christ and a repentant heart, they rise up reborn out of this sea ready to be baptized or truly cleansed by the Holy Spirit. "Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again." John 3:5-7. See also Acts 1:5, 2:38; 1 Peter 3:21. We are baptized into one body in one Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:13. The Roman church instituted baptism by sprinkling in 905 A.D. The water undergoes a rite by which it is widely held that the water itself is able to wash away sin, and make one pure. What rubbish! True baptism is in the Holy Spirit through a repentant heart. There is absolutely nothing holy about the water more than is holy with the rest of His creation. No holy power is imbued to it. Common river water will suffice.

Then there is the scripture considered most mysterious to the churches. In 1 Corinthians 15:29 Paul writes: "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?" If baptism for the dead was a lost doctrine, one could expect to find some trace of it in the early church, and one does. Epiphanius of Salamis became the bishop of Constantia in Cyprus. He was born in approximately 310 A.D., in Palestine, but received Egyptian training, and described himself as of the same faith as the fathers of Nicene. In speaking of Cerinthus and Corinth, Epiphanius writes: "For their school was at its very peak in this country, Asia [Minor], and Galatia moreover. And in these localities I even heard a piece of tradition which said that when some of their people died early without baptism, others would be baptized for them, in their names, to keep them from being punished for rising unbaptized at the general resurrection, and becoming subject to the authority that made the world."[51] On the other hand the Roman bishops such as Innocent I and Gelasius I came to hold that infants must be baptized as soon as possible so that if they die, they will not pass purgatory and be damned to hell. However, a thousand years later the Council of Trent anathematized this doctrine.[52] How about all those that have never heard the gospel? Without baptism for the dead, they are damned too.

Doctrines such as purgatory and indulgences came into being. These doctrines are reminiscent of the Greek pagan view revealed in Plato's Phaedrus, which is that after judgment some people "go to the place of correction under the earth and pay their penalty."[53] Jesus told the thief on the crosses with Him, that he would be in Paradise with Him that day - not purgatory. The Apostles Creed of the Roman Church is as follows:

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth:
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary:
Suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified dead and buried:
He descended into hell: [I cannot believe Jesus called Hell "Paradise" as He told the thief on the cross]
The third day he rose again from the dead:
He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty
From thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost:
The Holy Catholic Church....

The Church apparently determined that Jesus descended into hell because Isaiah tells us that He was taken from prison, and Jesus Himself also said he would spend three days in the heart of the earth. Matthew 12:40. However, Jesus said he was going to Paradise after His crucifixion - this is not the prison portion of the spirit world. Although Peter tells us that at some point Jesus did teach the spirits in Prison, these are spirits awaiting resurrection in the first resurrection which can live godly in the spirit - not spirits in the damnation of Hell. 1 Peter 3:19, 4:6. Why would Jesus need to teach spirits in hell? They are without redemption in the first resurrection, and until the book of life is opened, and they are brought forth to be judged according to their works. Revelation 20:12,13.

The incense smoking upon the numerous altars of the churches recall Virgil's description of the Paphian Venus. The use of holy water was long esteemed as heathenish by the early Fathers, and when adopted by the Church, the same composition of water and salt, and even the same form of sprinkling-brush was retained. The lights which burned before the shrines of the Saints were adopted in the same way after having been condemned, from the pagan ritual. Votive offerings hung in churches as they once hung in the temples of the gods. Crowds of worshipers still bowed before images of wood and stone, though saints, instead of demi-gods, have served as the originals.[54]

The exorcism of the salt before mixing it with the water is peculiar to the Roman rite. The eastern churches did not practice it, nor is there any evidence of such a tradition.

Even the structure of the church was borrowed from the pagan Roman empire. The Roman Curia was an ancient governing body in the Roman Republic, even before the empire. In order to better govern the empire, Emperor Diocletian divided provinces into dioceses, each governed by a vicarius (vicar). The bishop of Rome borrowed from this system, and became the vicar of the Son of God over all the dioceses of the church. He is the head of the curia or college of priests which govern the canons of the Roman Church. He has been called Lord and Caesar, and gloried in it.

But, remember, the little horn thinks to change not only laws but times. The following is from a three volume work which received the Nihil Obstat and the Imprimatur of the Roman Catholic Church, authenticating the work as being free from doctrinal error (but not factual error):

Just as the Roman outdoor procession on St. Mark's Day, the Litania maior of April 25, coincided with the heathen Robigalia, which the Popes in this wise endeavoured to supersede, so other celebrations kept by the Roman Church show a similar connection with the religious observances of heathen times. Instead of prohibiting with misplaced severity any observance by the faithful of certain time-honoured days, set apart in olden times, the authorities of the Church strove to impart a Christian character to the traditional practices with which the people were familiar. To the number of such festivals which mark the transition from Paganism to Christianity belongs the feast of the Collection or Oblation, which St. Leo the Great often mentions, a charitable festival of which we hear no more after his time.... Pope Leo looked on it as a venerable festival of Christian Rome, and even traced it back to the time of the Apostles.

The feast of St. Peter's Chair (Natale Petri de Cathedra) fell on February 22, on the very day when Pagans kept their popular festival of the "dear relatives" (Cara Cognatio), a sort of remembrance of the dead members of each family.

It would also seem that Christmas Day, solemnised on December 25th, has some connection with a feast of the heathen Calendar. Though the actual day of Christ's birth was not vouched for by any certain tradition, and though the East kept the Epiphany on January 6th as the feast of the Christ's entrance into the world [now known to be April 6], Rome, from the end of the third century, preferred to keep the commemoration on the day on which the winter solstice fell, and on which the festival of Sol Novus was celebrated according to the Roman Calendar. In the Philocalian list, December 25th is given as Natalis Invicti; i.e. the birthday of the invincible Sun-God [there's that dragon of the sun again]....

It is therefore no great wonder that, in the endeavour to Christianize the heathen festivals, this same day was set apart for the celebration of the rise of the Sun [dragon] of the world, i.e. Christ [but instead it is the prince of this world, who tried to usurp Christ by these means].

We meet with a yet more striking coincidence of Christian and Pagan festivals in the three Ember Weeks. At first, the Roman Church kept these seasons - which when a fourth had been added came to be known as Quattuor Tempora- only three times in the year, viz. in the fourth, seventh, and tenth months, according to ancient reckoning, i.e. in June, September, and December. It was at these same times that the heathen set aside certain days (Feriae) for the purpose of invoking the blessing of the gods on the fruits of the fields. At the beginning of summer the prayers were for the harvest; in the autumn for the vintage, and in winter for the freshly-sown seed. It is curious to note how, even now, the Scripture readings for the Ember-Day services contain allusions to the agricultural seasons.[55]

"Mainstream Christianity became infected with a pronounced streak of distrust towards bodily existence and sexuality. This permanent 'encratite' tendency was given powerful impetus in the debates about Christian perfection at the end of the fourth and the beginning of the fifth centuries."[56] Celibacy became the law first for bishops in the Christian east in the sixth or seventh century and then for all clergy in the Roman west in the twelfth century. The Second Lateran Council, 1139 A.D., being the 10th general council strictly forbids the marriage of ecclesiatics.[57] Even then "... in parts of Europe, like southern Germany or Wales, it was common for village priests to have a consort and a family, with the support of their flock and the connivance of their bishop who derived income from the annual fee or tax to allow the arrangement."[58]

"This people draweth nigh unto me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." Matthew 15:8-9. "Now the spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy... forbidding to marry...." 1 Timothy 4:1-4. "And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables." 2 Timothy 4:4. "The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant." Isaiah 24:5.

"And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven." Revelation 13:6. Jesus commanded "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your father, which is in heaven." Matthew 23:9. The holy title of Father is reserved to our Heavenly Father by commandment clearly broken by the Catholic church. The Roman pontiff has at least 62 names listed by Capel, Domestic Prelate of pope Leo XIII, some of which are:

Most Divine of All Heads.
Holy Father of Fathers, Pontiff Supreme over all Prelates...
Peter, by thy Power
Christ by Unction.
Abraham by patriarchate.
Melchisidec in order.
Moses in authority
Samuel in the Judicial Office....
High Priest. Supreme Bishop.
Prince of Bishops.
Heir of the Apostles....
Pontiff appointed with Plentitude of Power.
Supreme Chief; Most Powerful Word
Vicar of Christ
- Sovereign Priest.
Bishop of Bishops.
Ruler of the House of the Lord.
Peter, who lives and presides in his own See
Apostolic Lord and Father of Fathers
Ecumenical Archbishop and Patriarch...
Apostolic Throne, where are the foundations of Orthodox Faith
Infallible Pope
See, which the Lord appointed to preside over the rest....

Thus, the title "Pope" clearly breaks Jesus' commandment and blasphemes God by taking his name (showing himself that he is God), and the name of Jesus. The bishop of Rome blasphemes the tabernacle of the LORD by calling himself Ruler of the House of the Lord. The ruler is Jesus (although admittedly in ancient times the priest is referred to as ruler, even though a better term might be guardian until Jesus comes). As an apostle, Jesus sits on the apostolic throne - not the bishop of Rome. We see that the Roman pontiff takes the names which are attributed to Christ in scripture implying his supremacy over the church. He also blasphemes "them that dwell in heaven" by calling himself Moses, Abraham, and Melchisidec. The Council of Florence declared: "...the vicar of Christ is superior in authority and status even to Moses."[60] The Catholic Church reached this conclusion because it says it is more righteous than the synagogue. But of Moses the Scriptures say: "Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth." Numbers 12:3. The Lord chose Moses because although he was placed in a position to gain the wealth of Egypt as Pharaoh's son, and rule over his people, he rejected this temptation when he realized who he was. Instead, he rose in defense of his kin, and ran into the desert to face likely death. Then did our Lord speak unto him.

The Latin papa, or Greek pappas, 'Daddy', was used by early Christians of a bishop to whom they stood in a filial relation. North African Christians called the bishop of Carthage papa, but his colleague at Rome was 'bishop of Rome'. From the sixth century the title papa became especially Roman in the West. [the bishop of Rome became the pope or holy father] Until the fourth century his authority lay in being 'successor of Peter and Paul'. The influence of Matthew 16:16 led to the dropping of Paul. Not until Innocent III (d.1216) is the title 'successor of Peter' replaced by 'vicar of Christ'.[61]

Pope Innocent III presented himself "as vicar of Christ on earth and as Melchizedec, the Old Testament figure who was both king and priest; he was said to enjoy 'fullness of power', in contrast with the partial authority of all other bishops."[62] "'The Pope is the vicar of Jesus Christ. He has the same mission as Jesus Christ, the same power [when did he last heal a blind man], the same destiny: to instruct, sanctify, do good, ... and to suffer.'"[63] "'Q: Who is the visible head of the Church? A: It is our Holy Father the Pope, the bishop of Rome, who is the vicar of Jesus Christ and the visible head of the Church. The word Pope comes from a Greek word meaning Father.'"[64]

"...The day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. ...For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." 2 Thessalonians 2:2-12. The Roman Catholic Church refers to itself as the temple of the Lord. In the 1000 room Vatican Palace the Roman bishop has a gold chair and a private gold telephone.[65] A picture of his throne room in the Vatican Palace can be seen in The Vatican Its History - Its Treasures (Letters & Arts Publishing Co., NY. 1914), p.16. "But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition." 1 Timothy 6:9. Also in the Vatican are murals such as "The Coronation of Charlemagne", "The Hall of Constantine", "The Vision of Constantine", and a battle scene of "The Victory of St. Leo IV over the Saracens at Ostia."[66] "'The pope has about six hundred soldiers to guard his residence.... As a sovereign, the pope mints money, confers decorations, has a white and yellow flag, ambassadors (legates, apostolic nuncios) to every nation, etc. Those who are shocked by this pomp, remembering that Jesus Christ was not surrounded by a similar court, forget that the pope does not represent Jesus Christ pursued by his enemies, shamed and humiliated on the cross, but the divine savior gloriously raised to the heavens.' F. Spirago, Catechisme Catholique Populaire, pp.605-6 (Paris, 1903)."[67]

"And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased." Matthew 23:12. In one of his titles, Prince of the Apostles, the bishop of Rome elevates himself from the office of bishop past that of the apostles to Christ himself. His church teaches he represents Jesus Christ gloriously raised. In response to the quarreling disciples Jesus said: "But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant." Matthew 23:11.

The son of perdition is the son of the earthly father of lies, who gives power to Satan's evil through pagan secrecies. He is the son of the devil, the dragon, being born of his deception. He perverts and usurps the Word, thus denying the true power of our Savior. He slayeth with the sword in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. The Vatican Council has quoted from St. Gregory "the Great" (590-604) bishop of Rome, who wrote a series of letters denouncing the title of Universal or Oecumenical Bishop being used by the bishop of Constantinople. The Domestic Prelate of Pope Leo XIII, Thomas Capel, also admitted that Gregory strongly objected to the title Universal Bishop."[68] Pope Gregory wrote to the emperor: "'I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself or desires to be called, Universal Priest, in his pride goes before antichrist because through pride he prefers himself to the rest.... Since Truth says 'everyone who exalteth himself shall be abased,' I know the more any pride inflates itself, the sooner it bursts.'"[69] Gregory wrote to the patriarchs of Alexandria and Antioch: "'If a single patriarch is called universal the name patriarch is taken from the rest. But far be this from the mind of a Christian that anyone should wish to seize for himself that by which the honour of his brethren may seem to be in the smallest degree diminished....'"[70] In writing to the bishops of Thessalonica Gregory calls the title Universal Bishop a "'new and audacious name of superstition.'"[71] Since later bishops of Rome accepted the title of Universal Bishop, they also unwittingly accepted Gregory's label of antichrist, although the Scriptures call him the son of Perdition. The antichrist readily denies Jesus as the Christ Savior and Son of God. However, the bishop of Rome had the truth, but perverted it. Yet, as we shall see in a remarkable way he, as the son of perdition, does go before the antichrist.

Further, the Roman Catholic Church blasphemes the tabernacle of our Lord through doctrines such as transubstantiation in which it is claimed that spiritually the Catholic priests have the power to call Jesus' body to the sacrament table to be reoffered. Who is going to build the tabernacle of our Lord prophesied in Ezekiel 40-46? When built, the body of our Lord will be without blemish. Our Lord will not allow the Jews to fulfill this prophecy while they are apostate.

"And it was given unto him to make war with the Saints and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations." Revelation 13:7. The Catholic church has a presence all over the world in all the nations with about 1 billion members. Everyone has felt the effect of its adultery. Not only the Roman Empire, but early in its history the Roman Catholic Church persecuted and tortured the early Christian saints. Under Nero's reign, Tacitus wrote, "Their execution was made into a game. They were covered with the skins of wild animals and torn to pieces by dogs. They were hung on crosses. They were burned, wrapped in flammable material to illuminate the night. To escape death they had but to repudiate Christ and sacrifice to the emperor." Christians were officially outlawed and persecuted until 313 A.D., when Constantine and Licinius issued a joint edict of toleration. Because the Christian religion continued to spread, Satan changed his tactics to sanction the religion, but pervert it. Emperor Constantine became a "Christian" and the Catholic Church was split into the Roman Catholic Church (in Rome) and the Greek Orthodox Church (centered in Constantinople). After the Roman emperor's power crumbled the church stepped in to fill the power vacuum. The Roman church at first persecuted and then overcame the Arian tribes. Later, the African church was overrun by the Muslims, therefore leaving the bishop of Alexandria with little influence, while the Muslims also overran Antioch. The eastern bishops of Constantinople split off and formed the Greek Orthodox churches. That left the Bishop of Rome as the sole leader of the western church, and he began to think of himself as such.

The church followed Rome's example. The Catholic church convinced Emperor Honorius to persecute the north African Donatists from 400 - 428 A.D., (Gibbon) and they were sometimes put to death. "The brutality with which Charlemagne's armies [kinged as Holy Roman Emperor by the Roman pontiff] brought the Saxons to enforced Christianity and extracted tithes from them through new ecclesiastical foundations stands clearly revealed. But it is exposed above all in a letter to Alcuin (796) criticizing the whole policy."[72]

In 1143 A.D. the Roman citizenry sought to free themselves from ecclesiastical control, but in 1155 A.D. their leader, Arnold of Brescia, was burned at the stake for his so-called heresy, including his call for ecclesiastical poverty and separation from temporal interests.[73] Burning was a common tactic used by pagan Rome against the early Christians to induce them to recant and worship the emperor. The church initiated the Inquisition. Anyone who disagreed with the church was burned alive or tortured. "The acquisition of an effective force of popular persuaders was important in combating heresy, but it was unlikely that persuasion would be enough, and the church sought also for means of coercion. As early as the Third Lateran Council in 1179 the possibility of directing a crusade against the Albigensian heretics of Languedoc had been envisaged, but it was only under Innocent III, after the failure of a series of preaching missions, that it was finally launched. In the summer of 1209 an army of northern French barons and bishops marched against the southern heretics and captured Beziers, where there was an appalling massacre, and Carcassonne." To this day the Inquisition prison of Carcassonne stands as a testament to those chained there for their beliefs. "In 1231 [Gregory IX] issued a general condemnation of heresy in his bull Excommunicamus, and followed it by a series of commissions of inquisition ... They were a response to an emergency, but a response which marked an important stage in the development from the easygoing ways of the past to a regime of repression."[74]

Cornelius Agrippa wrote "'The inquisitors act entirely by the rule of the canon law and the Papal decretals, as if it were impossible for a Pope to err.... They accept as a rule of faith the teaching of the Curia, and the only question they ask the accused is, whether he believes in the Roman Church. If he says Yes, they say, 'The Church condemns this proposition - recant it.' If he refuses, he is handed over to the secular power to be burnt [like the blood of Jesus being placed on Pontius Pilate].'"[75] Janus, p.247. There was no right to a defense. The Catholic Encyclopedia, VIII "Inquisition", p.32: "Curiously enough, torture was not regarded as a mode of punishment, but purely as a means of eliciting the truth.... It was first authorized by Innocent IV in his Bull "Ad extirpanda" of 15 May, 1252, which was confirmed by Alexander IV on 30 November, 1259, and by Clement IV on 3 November, 1265."

The Church sought to break people's wills, and like the Roman emperors, force them to worship the authority of the pope. But beginning with the Teutonic peoples, rebellion was in the air. Hus of Bohemia was imprisoned for preaching against moral corruption. He taught to follow Christ and scripture above other doctrines. His call to follow one's moral conscience even against ecclesiastical authority was viewed as dangerous. He was tried by council, degraded from the priesthood (concluded by placing a paper cap on his head which read 'We commit your soul to the devil'), and handed over to civil officers to be burnt at the stake on July 6, 1415.[76] "The Council of Constance (1414-1418) succeeded in ending the Great Schism by enforcing the abdication of three rival popes and achieving the universal acceptance of a fourth, Martin V. Orthodoxy was also vindicated with the burning alive of Hus on the authority of the council...."[77] Luther probably only escaped the same fate by leaving the place of his summons secretly by night.

Great men of science who disagreed with the church were persecuted and killed. The eclectic philosopher Giordano Bruno was burned at Rome in 1600.[78] Remember Galileo who disagreed with the model of an earth-centered universe? "Late in 1616 the Pope ordered Robert Cardinal Bellarmine to admonish Galileo to abandon the Copernican system. If Galileo resisted, the Commissary of the Inquisition was instructed to threaten him with imprisonment were he ever to teach it again orally or in writing."[79] (Clearly also an example of the pope's doctrinal fallibility). Whose tactics do these sound like? Certainly not Jesus'. In his papal bull of 1487 Innocent VIII prescribed an archdeacon, Albert de Capitaneis "to labor in the extirpation of the very pernicious and abominable sect of men called the Poor of Lyons or the Waldenses [the Waldensian missionaries], in concert with the Inquisitor-General Blasius, of the order of the Preaching-Brotherhood. The Pope gives him, for that object, full power over all archbishops, bishops, their vicars and chief officers; 'in order,' says he, 'that they may have authority, together with you and the said inquisitor, to take up arms against the said Waldenses and other heretics, and to come to an understanding to crush them like venomous asps, and to contribute all their care to so holy and so necessary an extermination..... We give you power to have the crusade preached up by fit men: to grant that such persons as shall enter on the crusade and fight against these same heretics, and shall contribute to it, may gain plenary indulgence and remission of all their sins once in their life, and also at their death; to command, in virtue of their holy obedience, and under penalty of excommunication, all preachers of God's word to animate and incite [italics by author] the same believers to exterminate the pestilence, without sparing, by force and by arms.'"[80]

In the Council of Toulouse the Roman church ruled: "We prohibit laymen possessing copies of the Old and New Testament... We forbid them most severely to have the above books in the popular vernacular." "The lords of the district shall carefully seek out the heretics in dwellings, hovels, and forests, and even their underground retreats shall be entirely wiped out."[81] The Roman church considered the possession of scripture in a non-Latin vernacular to cause trouble, and partially justified its position by saying any translation would pervert the scriptures. Yet surely they would not be so bold as to claim that the true apostles wrote in Latin instead of their native Hebrew and Greek. William Tyndale made one of the first English translations of the Bible from the original Greek. For his efforts on behalf of the common man he was burned at the stake in Belgium as a Protestant heretic in 1536. The pope has not been the universally loving vicar of Christ he has painted himself to be - in fact history shows he has been the opposite - the false prophet or son of Perdition who rules with fear and terror. But he paints himself as the only bearer of truth: "Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII on the Study of Holy Scripture Nov. 18, 1893 'What the Bible Owes to the Catholic Church' ... 6 ...Moreover, it is owing to the wisdom and exertions of the Church that there has always been continued from century to century that cultivation of Holy Scripture which has been so remarkable and has borne such ample fruit."[82]

"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits... a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit." Matthew 7:15-17.

"And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. If any man have an ear, let him hear. He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints." Revelation 13: 8-10. For a time all Christendom revered the Roman pontiff - even the eastern church in Constantinople. The vicars of Christ extended their temporal power through the sword, rather than setting an example as Jesus did. The Lord taught that truth, not force and fear, sets us free. "...Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts." Zechariah 4:6. "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:32. Under Innocent I (412) no one could be ordained who had served in the army since baptism.[83] However, later the Catholic Church reserved to itself the right to use force. Point 24 of the Syllabus of Errors which must be affirmed by ordainees of the Catholic clergy states that "the Church has the power of employing force and [of exercising] direct and indirect temporal power."[84] Pope Julius II gloried in the ruination of the republic of Venice. During the Dark Ages popes such as Sixtus IV, Alexander VI, and Innocent VIII used papal armies to take possessions for their relatives upon which they conferred dukedoms, lordships, princes, and in the case of the pope's son, Caesar, the captain general of the Holy Roman Church. At times towns were retaken by successor popes for their successor relatives.[85]

I will examine the case of Alexander VI, Rodrigo de Borja (Borgia). Of the Spanish de Borja family, he was appointed as a bishop by his uncle, pope Callistus. Also given the office of vice-Chancellor, Rodrigo was able to amass enormous wealth as he was endowed with Spanish bishoprics, Italian abbeys, etc., which he used to build the most splendid palace in Rome of the day. He had a mistress, Vanozza de' Cataneis, by whom he had four illegitimate children, having already three other children. English authors point to sources saying he bought the papal office outright or the fact that he had "much to give away to those whom he favored." He then made his son Cesare (Caesar in Italian) a bishop at only age eighteen. Cesare too was later made the captain general of the Church after his return from a conquest. He was the model for Machiavelli's The Prince (Webster's New International Dictionary, 2nd, states Machiavelli was noted for his theory that any means, no matter how unscrupulous or lawless may justifiably be employed to ensure a strong centralized government). Pope Borgia's children had political marriages in order to solidify the family power over all of Italy. "Lucrezia, another of Vanozza's children, was married to Giovanni Sforza, Lord of Pesaro, in a splendid Vatican ceremony. Alexander [VI]'s favourite son Juan, who had inherited the Duchy of Gandia, from his half-brother in 1488, was married to the cousin of the king of Castile, and to promote the interests of the dukes of Gandia... he gave the greater share to Spain, to the detriment of Portugal."[86] One can still find Alexander VI in the "Hall of Mysteries" of the Borgia apartments of the Vatican. He is painted in humble reverence in "The Resurrection."[87]

Chapter 5

The beast is reiterated in Revelation 17. There can be no doubt. "I saw a woman [church] sit upon a scarlet coloured beast [mutated red dragon], full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls [this church possesses and craves wealth], having a golden cup in her hand [the sacrament wine goblet] full of the abominations and filthiness of her fornication: and upon her forehead [the mark of the Beast] was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT [spiritual Babylon], THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS [the mother of corrupt churches] AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH." (Revelation 14: 11 "the mark of his name"). Revelation 17:3-5. How does one receive the mark of his name or the number of his name? By joining the Roman Catholic Church.

Apparently, the very first Roman Church basilica, now rebuilt, was called the Basilica Constantiniana or Lateranensis, and was dedicated to Our Saviour (S. Giovanni in Laternano). It was built by means of endowment from twenty-nine estates under the auspices of Constantine on the site of the Lateran palace. It became known as "the mother and head of all churches" (mater et caput omnium ecclesiarum).[1] At this day on the facade of the original papal palace and church headquarters, the Lateran, appears the inscription: "Omnium Ecclesiarum Urbis et Orbis Mater et Caput (The Mother and Head of all the churches in the city and in the world)."[2] At the Fourth Lateran Council begun under Innocent III in November, 1215, appearances were made by all the major bishoprics, including Alexandria. Beforehand, Innocent had prepared 71 canons which the bishops had little opportunity but to affirm. Certainly, there was no opportunity for a lone bishopric such as Alexandria to win a victory by dissenting. The fifth canon of the council states: "...that after the Roman church, which through the Lord's disposition has a primacy of ordinary power over all other churches inasmuch as it is the mother and mistress of all Christ's faithful, the church of Constantinople shall have the first place, the church of Alexandria the second place, the church of Antioch the third place, and the church of Jerusalem the fourth place, each maintaining its own rank. Thus after their pontiffs have received from the Roman pontiff the pallium, which is the sign of the fullness of the pontifical office, and have taken an oath of fidelity and obedience to him, they may lawfully confer the pallium on their own suffragans...."[3]

Later, the mark appears as part of a confirmation creed prospective members are asked to affirm. They affirm the creed of the Roman Catholic Church as stated by Pope Pius IV (1559-1565) who issued a Bull summarizing the doctrines of the Council of Trent:

I, [name], believe and profess, with a firm faith, all and every one of the things which are contained in the symbol of faith which is used in the Holy Roman Church, namely:

1. I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.... [the Apostle's Creed and the Nicene Creed]


11. I most firmly assert that the images of Christ and of the mother of God ever Virgin, and also of the other Saints, are to be had and retained, and that due honor and veneration are to be given them.

12. I also affirm, that the power of indulgences was left by Christ in the Church, and that the use of them is most wholesome to Christian people.

13. I acknowledge the Holy Catholic and Apostolic and Roman Church and Mother and Mistress of all Churches, and I promise and swear true obedience to the Roman Bishop, the successor of St. Peter the Prince of the Apostles and the Vicar of Jesus Christ [representative of 666].[4]

Note that affirming the Nicene Creed and the trinity is part of this unholy rite. Also part of the confirmation is a mark on the forehead in the form of a cross, signifying the trinity. Neither Jesus nor the gospel ever requires us to swear to the trinity, because it is a man-made doctrine. The mystery of the trinity is a mark identifying Rome as MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT. Even Leo XIII called the trinity "the greatest of all mysteries."[5] Most of the Protestant churches have adopted the doctrine of the trinity, and their congregations mark themselves with it in their services. There are but a few exceptions such as the Unitarians and the Anabaptist faiths. However, I am not saying this is the mark of the image of the beast.

The woman with a cup in her hand is the Church represented in Rome. On the Jubilee, 1825, pope Leo XII struck a medal bearing his image on one side and on the obverse a 7-rayed woman holding a cup/goblet in her right hand and a staffed cross in her left with the words "Sedet Svper Vniversvm [V=u]," which is "The Whole World is Her Seat."[6] With the advent of wealth in the church, the clergy apparently began to wear separate apparel from even the aristocratic laity. These developed into the scarlet robes seen on cardinals and bishops in the Vatican even today, which fulfill the words of Revelation.[7] "The 'imperialization' of the Church is one of the outstanding features of the Reform Papacy.... To this array there belonged above all the cappa rubea, the imperial purple, which the pope donned immediately after his election and which constitutionally was even more important than the tiara with crown. The purple, introduced in the age of Reform, was considered the true symbol of papal dominion. Its reception was effected also by the Donation of Constantine [the forgery of which is discussed herein below] where the clamis purpurea is mentioned among the raiments ceded to the pope, a garment styled in the 'Dictatus of Avranches' a signum imperii et martyrii."[8] "Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; Which devour widows' houses, and for a shew make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation." Luke 20:46-47.

For examples of her gold, precious stones, and pearls see the Pala D'oro at St Mark's, Venice, (dating to around the tenth century). "It is the most obscenely ostentatious of all the medieval church's treasures, including 1,300 pearls, 90 amethysts, 300 emeralds and 83 large enamels [all inset in gold], many plundered from the Byzantine world."[9] Another is "The Statue of St Faith at Conques, early tenth-century, of wood encased with gold and encrusted with gems."[10] Then there is the gold tiara of pope Julius II which is richly endowed with pearls and gems laid in precious metal. They go on and on.

Nor has the LORD ever commanded us to revere any images - on the contrary. "Neither shalt thou set thee up any image; which the LORD thy God hateth." Deuteronomy 16:22. But the Catholic Church causes followers to swear that they will revere them. "In the sacristy [of S. Maria in Aracoeli] is the celebrated miracle working image of the Santissimo Bambino. It is a small figure carved out of olive wood from the Mount of Olives, swathed in gold and silver tissue. The Santissimo Bambino is, according to the popular belief, invested with extraordinary powers in curing the sick. Its aid is in constant requisition in severe cases, and its practice brings to it more fees than any physician in Rome. The Santissimo is always borne in a private coach under the care of two Franciscan monks; as it passes through the streets devout people kneel and cross themselves. Its gold crown adorned with pearls and precious stones and the countless sparkling diamonds, emeralds, and rubies by which it is covered, are votive offerings recording its miraculous powers."[11]

"And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her I wondered with great admiration [she fools you into admiring her riches and power]." Revelation 17:6. In 1204 A.D. Innocent III called upon the king of France to take up arms against the Albigensians who believed all matter was evil, and therefore sometimes starved themselves to death. Innocent said heresy was to be treated with a knife as a doctor treats a wound. The nobility of the north struggled to subdue the south. The Archbishop of Narbonne and a leader of the Catholic forces purportedly exclaimed "'kill them all - God will recognize His own'" in response to how to distinguish Catholics from heretics.[12] "The Popes in their wars in Italy were often represented in the field by cardinal legates as military commanders. Cardinal Robert of Geneva (afterwards Clement VII) when he captured Cesena gave the inhabitants up to three days' carnage. Even the leader of his mercenary troops was shocked, but the cardinal's cry was: 'I will have more blood - kill all.' Five thousand perished."[13] He was also reported to cry "'Blood, blood, and justice.'" To prevent escape the city gates were closed. When the victims finally did get a gate open, they found only more soldiers waiting outside.[14] "Pope Gregory XIII in 1572 upon the massacre in Paris on St. Bartholomew's day, caused medals to be struck with this inscription about his image 'Gregorius XIII. Pont.Max.An.1.' and on the reverse side, a destroying angel holding a cross in one hand, and in the other, a sword thrusting, with the words, 'Hugonotorum strages, 1572.' 'The slaughter of the Hugonots.' Voyage to Italy, p.15 An. 1688."[15] Pope Sixtus IV excommunicated Venice on May 25, 1483 for warring against Ferrara; he blessed the artillery being sent to battle against the Colonna family and Venice.[16] This drunkenness over death can't be more contrary to the words of Jesus when his disciples implored him to rain fire down on his enemies: "But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to another village." Luke 9:55-56.

"And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth." Revelation 17:9. The Roman church figuratively and literally sits on the seven mountains. Ancient Rome was a walled oval city of seven hills with Latin names preceded by mons - for example, Mons Capitolivm or in Englliish, Capitoline. The literal english interpretation of mons is mount or mountain. The six others are Mons Qvirinalis, Viminalis, Esqvilinvs, Palatinvs, Coelivs, and Aventinvs.[17] On each mountain sits a cathedral or some kind of Catholic shrine; on mons Coelivs/Caelian sits the Lateran, the original location of the pope's palace and church headquarters. The Lateran palace was part of the dowry of Constantine's bride, Fausta, who was the daughter of Emperor Maximinian. History is unclear whether Constantine gave the Lateran palace to the Roman bishop before or after he murdered Fausta, but the bishop did apparently use it as at least a temporary residence before the murder.[18]

"And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space." Revelation 17:10. The first six emperors of the Roman Empire are Caesar, Augustus (Octavian styled himself Imperator Caesar Augustus, Son of a God and adopted Julius Caesar as his deified father), Tiberius, Gaius "Caligula", Claudius, and the sixth, Nero, who died in 68 A.D. After Nero's death three men vied for power over the course of about one year - Galba, Otho, and Vitellius. However, a fourth, Vespasian, who had been in the east fighting the Jews, reappeared on the scene, and his Danubian legions stormed Rome and defeated Vitellius in 69 A.D. He ruled until his death in 79 A.D. His son, Titus, put down the Judaean revolt which began in 67 A.D., by destroying Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 A.D. By 73 A.D. the last threads of resistance, such as Masada were put down. Later, Domitian, Titus' brother, erected the Arch of Titus in Rome commemorating the destruction of the Temple with reliefs showing the spoils from the Temple.[19] Jesus' prophecy regarding the destruction of the Temple had come to pass. Thus, it was done. The last of the four horns or beasts to spread Judah/Israel was finishing its work. Vespasian was the seventh king the early church members were warned about. After that the beast was the true ruler, and began to do his work to subvert Christianity.

"And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition." Revelation 17:11. This is "the Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass. [once again Jesus tells us that His Father is showing His will to Jesus]" Revelation 1:1. When our Lord Jesus left us, he gave us these words: "Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me." John 14:30. In the third century after Christ the Aurelian wall was built to expand ancient Rome even across the Tiber river. "...On the west bank of the River Tiber... was a hill called Mons Vaticanus. It was not one of the traditional seven hills on which Rome was built, but it is the only one which most people remember today - for it has given its name to the world's smallest independent state, the Vatican City." "It is not a democracy, it is - at least in theory - the world's most absolute dictatorship, one which cannot sign the United Nations' Declaration of Human Rights because within its boundaries there is no freedom of religion."[20] Under Constantine the church gained possession of the east face of Mons Vaticanvs, where the basilica of St. Peter was built. By the 2nd millennia A.D. an independent township had grown up called the Leonine city with its own wall connecting it to Rome. Nicholas III (1277-1280) made the Vatican his permanent residence.

Thus, the Vatican City became the eighth mount, and is the beast of Revelation.[21] The beast that was, the imperial red dragon of Rome, mutated into a new spiritual dragon or beast. The Roman pontiff desired to have the political power of the emperors, and when the western emperors were no more he took their title of the supreme pagan priest, Pontifex Maximus (maximum or supreme pontiff), and adopted devilish ceremony to invest himself. Thus, he is truly of the seven. "The high priest of the Roman State was called the Pontifex Maximus, a title assumed eventually by the pope [Leo I] and only recently disavowed by Popes John Paul I (d. 1978) and John Paul II."[22] But the Vatican cannot disavow the name so easily. Above the Vatican library, is the inscription "Pius XII, Pontifex Maximus." Pius XII was addressed as "His Holiness the Pope, Bishop of Rome and Vicar of Jesus Christ; Successor of St. Peter, Prince of the Apostles; Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Church; Patriarch of the West...."[23] The title, Pontifex Maximus, or abbreviations of it can be seen not only all over the Vatican, but on other buildings in Rome including St. Peter's Basilica.[24]

Thus, we see that the bishop of Rome took the title of even that dreaded Roman emperor, Nero. He also took the name of Caesar. In the Quadragesima of Lent school boys stood in front of the Lateran palace where they shouted out their "Victoria": "'Open the doors to us, we have come to lord pope Innocent; we wish to greet him and to raise praises to him in the manner that is fitting to Caesar. Lord, open the window. [approach to window] You see who comes. Comes the sun! Comes the moon! Comes the clouds of the heaven with manna. We come to our most holy lord pope I(nnocent) with palms. May God give him life! May Christ give him Life! [interlude of Greek laudes] Bravo blessed pope Innocent, who governs all in place of St. Peter.'" [25] Early Catholic writers saw Nero as the beast of Rome, and said that his name as it appeared on Asian coins, the Greek form of Neron Kesar, equaled 666 when written in Hebrew. Some Latins even changed the number to 616 to correspond with the Latin form of Nero.[26] But they missed the eighth mountain and great MOTHER OF HARLOTS of Revelation 17 completely.[27]

And the bishop of Rome goeth into perdition because he is the son of perdition. "When Christianity conquered Rome the ecclesiastical structure of the pagan church, the title and vestments of the pontifex maximus, the worship of the Great Mother and a multitude of comforting divinities, the sense of supersensible presences everywhere, the joy or solemnity of old festivals, and the pageantry of immemorial ceremony, passed like maternal blood into the new religion, and captive Rome captured her conqueror."[28] The beast of the Roman Church took on virtually all the forms of the Roman pagan seven-headed and seven-crowned dragon - the Pontifex Maximus, the Curia, its dioceses, its rites, its holidays, and the use of force and fear to dominate its people. The Caesar-pope was endowed with imperial, totalitarian power over the Roman clergy who acquired the senatorial name and rank of the Curia. In another twist of fate the English version of the word pope resembles the popa. "Popa, was the sacerdotal minister, who, crowned with laurel, and naked to the waist, conducted the victims to the altar, provided the knives, mallets, water, and other necessaries, for the sacrifices, felled the victims, and cut their throats. - Vaillant, in his brass medallions, gives a fine group of this kind, in which the Emperor Commodus stands as Pontifex at a lighted altar, and opposite him is the Popa, answering to the above description, standing by a bull with his slaughtering hammer."[29]

"And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth." Revelation 18:24. On Mons Vaticanus Emperor Gaius Caligula (d.37), built the Circus Gai which was completed by Emperor Nero. Here, in this stadium games and races were held, and Nero staged the first terrible persecution of the Christians. "St. Peter himself was probably put to death in the Circus around 64. Next to the circus was a cemetery, largely the resting place for the lower strata of Roman society. Christians used the cemetery as well, and, from the second century, it was revered as the burial place of St. Peter. Once Christianity was granted full recognition by the imperial government, the hill assumed increasing importance because of the presence of so many martyrs, especially the Prince of the Apostles and the first bishop of Rome. Emperor Constantine the Great (d.337) thus built a great basilica [St. Peter's] on the Vatican Hill, placing it directly over the cemetery of the Christians."[30] The Roman Church is responsible for many deaths - not only Christian but Jewish and Muslim. She not only is literally built on the blood and bones of some of the last of the prophets for hundreds of years, but in her is found the blood of those who had the courage to fight against each new corruption she introduced, as well as hundreds of thousands who died in the religious campaigns of the Middle Ages. As many of her members realized, true followers of Christ would not condone the instigation of such warfare.

Even Catholic writers admit that Peter called Rome by the name Babylon.[31] The Catholic Church maintains that Peter was captured and crucified in Rome and that St. Peter's Basilica is built upon his grave. [John 21:18-19; 2 Peter 1:14]. Before his death Peter wrote two epistles. In closing 1 Peter, he uses the spiritual name of Rome, Babylon, probably to avoid further persecution of the Christians there: "The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son." 1 Peter 5:13. The Babylonian city of Babylon had long since been destroyed and finally abandoned, but it was the birth of the fiery flying serpent of Isaiah. In his second epistle Peter tells us: "Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me." 2 Peter 1:14. Paul the apostle wrote similarly in 2 Timothy saying "all they which are in Asia [Minor] be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes." 2 Timothy 1:15. He says: "For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica." 2 Timothy 4:10. Paul is telling us that those of the Church in Asia Minor were already allowing their love of God to wilt under the heat of persecution. "At my first answer [at his Roman trial] no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge." 2 Timothy 4:16. He tells us "Only Luke is with me." 2 Timothy 4:11. However Paul commends "... Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain [prison chains]: But, when he was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me." 2 Timothy 1:16-17. In concluding Paul says: "For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith." 2 Timothy 4:6-7. Thus, the blood of apostles was laid in Rome, fulfilling Scripture.

"And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth." Revelation 17:18. (Rome or spiritual Babylon). For hundreds of years the bishop of Rome crowned the kings of Europe in his Holy Roman Empire, and pitted them against one another for his interests. He also took away their power through excommunication, bulls, etc. "During the hundred years or so after Constantine Christianity could be a passport to office, power, and wealth."[32] If pagans wanted to have power, they became "Christians." "As bishops like Augustine and Pope Leo I (like their Eastern colleagues such as John Chrysostom) often complained, the people who filled the churches on the festivals of Jerusalem also filled the theatres on the festivals of Babylon."[33] Was Rome really so profligate? After being elected, a bishop of Rome was expected to dole out money to the citizens of Rome in exchange for their good behavior. Innocent III refused to do this immediately, so the citizens rioted, and Innocent was forced to put down several riots.[34]

Why Babylon? "Babylon hath been a golden cup in the LORD's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad." Jeremiah 51:7 [see the Lord's promise to the nations which drink thereof in Jeremiah 25(they shall be punished)]. "Babylon gradually declined in the Hellenistic period and was abandoned before the time of Christ [Jeremiah 51:9]. But the world still owes an enormous debt to the ancient civilization of Babylonia, which, through its influence upon Hebrew and Greek cultures [and hence the Roman], has contributed enormously to the civilization of the West."[35] But our Lord says: "This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men." Daniel 4:17. It is true that the Semitic culture in Babylon laid the basis for our calendar, our measure of time, mathematics, and science. These things passed to the Greeks and then the Romans. But with them passed the Hellenistic values of pleasure loving; loving outward things more than things of the heart - physical beauty, and fine clothing. Hellenistic culture has always rewarded those who grabbed power through intrigue, and glorified conquest in war.

The Hellenistic presumption of superiority embedded in the imperialistic ideal still survives in the Roman Catholic Church. Witness these words of Hartmann Grisar, S.J., a Roman Catholic priest:

Arianism, which practically everywhere assumed the form of a State religion, felt neither the desire nor the need to stretch beyond the limits of its own country or beyond the range of view of the sovereign of the land. Even had it so desired, it could not have done so. Its bishops were men of no importance; its religious potency almost nil. Compared, in respect to action and influence, with cultured Latins, distinguished both for their education and force of character, who usually occupied the Catholic sees, the Arians were completely in the shade. The contrast was increased by the Arians' spite and jealousy against the Roman system and the Catholic Church.

If Grisar is correct, how is it, as even he admits, the ancient catholic scholar, Avitus, exclaimed "If Arianism is not to be our ruin, we must with all our might take the part of the Bishop of Rome?"[36] Avitus obviously thought Arianism had some potency. So did the Teutons for it converted them from paganism, except for the Franks and Saxons.

"And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings [the same 10 horns of Daniel 7:7], which have received no kingdom as yet [at the time Revelation was written]; but receive power as kings one hour [up to 41 years; the uneasy alliance with the tribes] with the beast." Revelation 17:12. The Romans characterized these Teutonic tribes as barbarians because they were nomadic. Although they fought voraciously, on the whole they had a strong sense of honor and moral standards. For instance they liked to give their opponents a choice of when and where to do battle, even though it was not beneath the Romans to disregard the agreement and attack early. They did not have a sovereign emperor. They elected their kings on the basis of leadership skill and ability. They were usually quick to remove bad kings. Thus, they had a semi-democratic society, and loved their freedom. They never tolerated oppression long, and this spirit lives to this day. While in the employ of the Romans, they largely came to loathe the Romans for their debauchery. One historian put it like this: "Now in contrast to all these abominations, old Salvian sets, boldly and honestly, the superior morality of the barbarians. That, he says, is the cause of their strength and our weakness. We professing orthodoxy, are profligate hypocrites. They, half heathens, half Arians, are honester men, purer men than we. There is no use, he says, in despising the Goths as heretics, while they are better than we. They are better Christians than the Romans, because they are better men. They pray to God for success, and trust in Him, and we presumptuously trust in ourselves."[37]

"These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast." Revelation 17:13. Most of the tribes who received kingdoms in the break up of the Roman empire were Arian. They virtually swooped down upon the Empire all at one time within a few decades. After they defeated their Roman subjects they were all eventually converted to the Catholic Church, and thus gave their strength to the beast. One of their great organizations was the Teutonic Knights, who fought on behalf of the Roman Catholic Church to maintain the crusader states and convert others. Eventually, there was a line of Germanic popes (Spanish, French and German). The Roman historian, Gregorovius, sums it up thusly: "The Germans, who had destroyed the Western Empire, after having been received into Roman civilization and the bosom of the Church, now effected its restoration. And the Church, whose laws controlled the West, from within herself created anew the Roman Empire, as the political form of her cosmopolitan principle, and the spiritual unity within which the Pope had embraced so many nations. His supremacy over all churches of the West could, moreover, only attain complete recognition through the Emperor and the Empire."[38]

The Arian tribes were Germanic (Teutonic) peoples who were also among the first to successfully revolt against the Roman Catholic Church, and form Protestant churches. Their spirit was led by persons like Luther and Hutten. Luther declared: "'If the virtual Church is the Pope, what horrors shall we have to reckon in the Church! The bloodshed of Julius II., the tyranny of Boniface VIII. You will not persuade us [the German school] under the name of your virtual and representative Church to revere such things.'"[39] "[Hutten] recalled the old glories of Germany when the Empire had been a reality; he meditated on Germany's downfall before the hostility of the Papacy; he compared it with other nations and found it divided, distracted, and helpless before Papal extortion. He saw in the Papal power the cause of Germany's abasement, and attacked the abuses of the Papal Court..." in stinging triad epigrams such as "Three things maintain the dignity of Rome: the authority of the Pope, the relics of saints, the sale of Indulgences. Three things are brought back from Rome: a depressed conscience, a ruined digestion, empty pockets. Three things are laughed at in Rome: the example of the past, the pontificate of Peter, the last judgment. Three things are feared in Rome: a General Council, reform of the Church, the opening of the eyes of the Germans. Three things are excommunicated in Rome: indigence, the primitive Church, preaching of the truth. Three things are despised in Rome: poverty, the fear of God, equity."[40]

"These shall make war with the Lamb...." Revelation 17:14. Unknowingly, however, most of the Teutonic peoples end up fighting against the truth. "And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled." Revelation 17:16-7. The time cometh that the ten horns shall see the whore sitting on the waters.

Were the new Protestant churches true? Was proper authority passed on by the laying on of hands as was done in Christ's church? Ex. 2 Timothy 1:6. The Protestant churches also tended to deny any prophetic power. If the old church had not the truth, but it had been perverted or completely lost, how then were the new leaders going to reestablish the truth without prophetic power? Were they able to divine all the truth for themselves? If so, how come there are so many churches? Luther at first doubted the genuiness of the Revelation apocalypse, only adding it later to his translation of the Bible in an appendix. Although he saw the Roman pontiff as the antichrist, the pontiff does not meet the scriptural requirement of denying Jesus Christ as the Son of God. Luther obviously had an astute mind, but a seer or prophet he was not. Moreover, his Protestants taught that good works contributed nothing to salvation. This is contrary to the scriptures, yet arose as a result of Luther's teachings and a somewhat natural reaction to fraud perpetrated on the people by the church in the name of their dead. The medieval religion they rebelled against has been called a "religion practised by the living on behalf of the dead."[41] However, almost always where the truth has been perverted a thread remains. Did the Protestants react too abruptly in rejecting work for the dead in toto? How does one then explain scriptures such as 1 Corinthians 15:29?: "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?"

Did the Protestant churches truly have the fullness of the gospel? "The Spanish physician and classical scholar Michael Servetus obtained a special prominence among the earlier representatives of this movement [Protestant anti-trinitarianism] by reason of his tragic fate. In his Christianisoni Restitutio he denies the tripersonality of the Godhead and the eternity of the Son. He also rejects infant baptism. The Restitutio aroused the antagonism of Catholics and Protestants alike. After he escaped the Catholic inquisition, he was arrested while passing through Geneva, and with the full consent of [John] Calvin, condemned as heretic and burned alive, in 1553, though Calvin preferred for him the milder execution by the sword."[42] Of course, not all Protestant churches persecuted solely on the basis of faith, but the fact remains they not only persecuted Catholics, but other Protestants.

The author Gerard Philips has concluded: "Whereas the Reformation bows before the inaccessible majesty of God, Rome substitutes itself for God and claims his powers."[43] However, both are false distortions of the truth from an ungodly source. We are not God, and do not have His power. Only the most godly have been given an inkling of His power so that others may know the truth. On the other hand Jesus came to teach us that His majesty is not inaccessible, and prays that each of us will be one with the Father as He is. He set the example to lead the way. He followed the example of His Father. Satan fears this truth, and uses men as his pawns to persecute it, and cause men to fear it.

"The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." Revelation 17:15. This corrupt church has influence over the nations of the Earth. Remember, it sits on the sea. "For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the Earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies." Revelation 18:3. As an example I will cite the papal Bull of the Holy Crusade, Clement XI, MDCCXVIII (1718), to the Kingdoms of Spain. At a cost of 13 pence, 3 farthings it grants a pardon of all sin for several future years, and a modest burial for those who die in battle in exchange for his service in the eastern crusade. Some bulls or indulgences granted pardons from sin for up to 15 years in the future. By these means the people were promised they would escape suffering in purgatory (a kind of temporary hell not found in the scriptures). All one had to do was follow the Bull, and all future sins within the allotted time were wiped away in exchange for money or services. At the time the Spanish king received approximately 2/3 of the proceeds while the balance went to the pontiff.[44] Crusading songs make repeated reference to this "good deal."[45]

"...Many theologians protested against the undue extension of Indulgences. But their protests did not influence the commissaries who were entrusted with their sale. It was natural that they should magnify their office, and seize upon the highest views of the efficacy of Indulgences which had received any sanction from canonists."[46] "Wessel answered [orthodox friends] by an examination of the historical basis of Indulgences. It is not to be found in Scripture, nor is it a custom that can be traced to apostolic tradition. It cannot claim to be part of the rule of faith; nor are the Bulls of Boniface VIII. and Clement VI. sufficient to exalt it to that position."[47]

The evil of indulgences cannot stand in the light of the Scriptures. Peter teaches us that we cannot purchase the gifts of God. "But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God." The Acts 8: 20-21. Nowhere did the apostles accept money in exchange for their prayers to forgive sins of donors. "None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious....)" Psalm 49:7-8.

"And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, come out of her [leave that church] my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." Revelation 18:4. The woman is "Jezebel [devotee of Baal], which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. And I gave her space to repent of her fornication [of the everlasting covenant]; and she repented not. Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches [other women] shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts...." Revelation 2:20-23. Another name for Jezebel is "Woe to the dunghill."[48] "And the carcase of Jezebel shall be as dung upon the face of the field in the portion of Jezreel; so that they shall not say, This is Jezebel." 2 Kings 9:37. "The Mirabilia [Urbis Roma] also says: 'Before the ambit [of the Lateran palace] is the seat of the dung-heap (sedes sterquilinii) where the Pope is led for to sit, when he hath been crowned at St Peter's, and he saith: Silver and gold have I none, but that I have, give I thee. Above the palace be seats, in which it is considered whether the Pope be a man or woman.' The three seats alluded to were of porphyry and stood in front of the palace and on the day of his coronation he sat first on one and then on the other. While in the first he received the keys of the Lateran palace and basilica, and from the second he threw money to the people. The purpose was to show that a man could raise himself from a mud-heap to the highest position in the world." However, this ceremony was last done by Leo X (1513-1521).[49] Gregorovius says at the time of Innocent III the marble seat was called the sella stercoraria. He says "this symbolic ceremony, of the deepest abasement of the supreme Head of Christendom on a seat bearing such a name, is perhaps the most curious custom of the Middle Ages...."[50] The Oxford Latin Dictionary tells us that sella means a seat for one person or a seat used for defecating. Stercoria (ius) means pertaining to dung or a dealer in manure. Sterquilinium means a manure heap.

"How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow." Revelation 18:7. "Of her mission in the realm of religion, it may here be said only that imagination will not conceive of her ceasing to be the capital of the great masses of Christendom. But whatever her political, intellectual, or ecclesiastical part in the affairs of the future, Rome will never lose her importance in the history of human culture. In the domain of the spirit, she will indeed be the Eternal City."[51] The art of the church provides a mirror to her soul. In one illustration an ornately dressed lady wears a crown, and holds the imperial symbols of the orb and the frond. She is seated on a cathedra flanked by two lions, and represents Roma caput mundi - Rome, head of the world. Another medieval illustration shows a lady with a nimbus, dressed in Hellenistic style. In her left hand is a model of the church while in her right is a tripartite orb topped with a kneeling angel holding an orifiamma. She stands on a crouched lion together with a winged dragon and a serpent, which she is crushing under foot. An accompanying legend indicates the woman is Ecclesia Romana (Roman church), the globe is mundus (the world), and the church is Ecclesia Dei (church of God). The lion has been interpreted as the imperium romanum, and the angel as triumphus clericorum. "Taken together these illustrations show that by incorporating the symbol of the lion in the papal throne in Santa Maria in Cosmedin, Calixtus boldly identified the pope as the successor of the Caesars and the ruler of Rome."[52] Sitting on her throne of power, she boldly declares to the world: "As the Christian community at the heart of the new Babylon, she will become the 'memory' of the presence of salvation in the full tide of the world's sin, marked as she is by the outstanding authenticity of witness which it is her mission to guard."[53]

"And the light of the candle shall shine no more at all in thee [at first the light did shine there]; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard nor more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived." Revelation 18:23. Jezebel wrote letters in the name of the king, her husband Ahab, using his seal. These letters asked two witnesses to stand falsely against Naboth, so that he may be stoned, and his vineyard taken. 1 Kings 21. The bishop of Rome writes in the name of the true King, our Heavenly Father, calling Jesus the Husband of the Catholic Church. He also wrote at least one letter in the name of Peter, apparently in order to gain more influence with Pepin and his soldiers. Through means of deception such as this, he took our Lord's vineyard.

The letter addressed from Peter occurred when Rome felt threatened by the Lombards. In 752 Aistulf/Astolf led his Lombards in a siege of Rome. They sacked everything outside the city walls, except St. Peter's and St. Paul's basilicas, including the catacombs. They were apparently encouraged into this action by the passing of Zacharias, the bishop who had successfully countered their attacks. The new bishop of Rome, Stephen II, passed away even before being consecrated, and the next pontiff therefore also took the name of Stephen II. He wrote three letters to Pepin, the Frank, imploring his military assistance against the Lombards. One was dated February 23, 752 - 55 days after the siege began. One letter was addressed as being from Peter the apostle: "Petrus vocatus Apostolus a Jesu Christo Dei vivi filio...[Peter who is an apostle of Jesus Christ the Son of the living God]." Stephen caused the apostle to write:

I, Peter the apostle, have been set by the power of Christ, the son of the living God, to be a light to the whole world... Our Lady Mary, the ever-Virgin Mother of God, unites her entreaties to ours, protests, admonishes and commands, and with her the thrones and dominations and the entire army of the celestial host, as well as the martyrs and confessors of Christ, and all those who are acceptable to God. Together we exhort and conjure you to deliver not only the city of Rome entrusted to us by God, but the sheep of the Lord who dwell therein and are troubled, and the Holy Church which God has confided to me, from the hands of the persecuting Lombard; so that (which God may avert) my body, for which the Lord Jesus Christ suffered, and my grave, where by God's command it rests, may neither be desecrated by them, nor the people belonging to me dispersed and killed by these Lombards; barbarians guilty of perjury and transgressors of God's word.


Should you, which we cannot believe, be guilty of delay or evasion, or fail to obey our exhortations in coming to the rescue of this, my city of Rome, its inhabitants, and the Apostolic Church, entrusted to me by God and its chief priest, know that, by the power of the Holy Trinity, by the grace of the Apostolic office confided to me by the Lord Christ, on account of your disobedience to my summons, you shall be declared to have forfeited the Kingdom of God and Eternal Life.[54]

Unless Peter actually gave Stephen such words, who is committing the perjury? Some commentators excuse the letter on the grounds that ancient orators were familiar with invoking the dead or the immortal. Even the historian, Gibbon, comments that the purpose was surely to persuade rather than deceive.[55] Even so, the purpose would be to persuade and invigorate the rank and file soldiers unfamiliar with such niceties, and who would be impressed with the complement allegedly made by Peter to the Franks as the first and most deserving nation or intimidated by the threat of the loss of eternal life. If caught, Jezebel's heart would seek a similar excuse.

Even Roman Catholics have admitted to her sorceries. "... Gregory VII faced overwhelming internal and external problems when he was elected in 1073: simony(the buying and selling of spiritual goods and church offices), nepotism(placing relatives in lucrative church offices), violations of clerical celibacy, and the interference of lay princes in the appointment and installation of bishops and abbots("lay investiture"). Gregory VII had his canon lawyers comb the archives for every trace or shred of support for the kind of exercise of papal power that he deemed necessary to meet these challenges. Some of the materials they uncovered were authentic; others were spurious - forgeries."[56] How did these forgeries arise? "They [the Romans] claimed their privileges and lands as granted to them by past Roman Emperors, under the Roman law. This fact made it their interest of course, to perpetuate that Roman law, and to introduce it as far as they could among their conquerors, to the expulsion of the old Teutonic laws; and they succeeded on the whole.... Observe now that as their rights dated from times which to the Teutons were pre-historic, their statements could not be checked by conquerors who could not even read. Thence rose the temptation to forge; to forge legends, charters, dotations, ecclesiastical history of all kinds."[57]

Some forgeries were admittedly used by popes or even in the canon law. Two examples are in The Catholic Encyclopedia, V, but I will point out they were apparently not drafted by the church in Rome. In the eleventh century the false decretals of Isidore became part of the canon law of the Roman Catholic Church. It is admitted on pp. 773-80 that these forged decretals of some 33 popes were used in canon law. The Donation of Constantine was repeatedly used by the bishop of Rome both in reality and in art. He used it to gain the support of Charlemagne because in it Constantine purportedly gave the bishop of Rome primacy over the bishops of Antioch, Alexandria, Constantinople and Jerusalem, which was of course contrary to the Council of Nicaea. Nor would it lend credence to the argument that God gave the Roman bishop primacy, even if it were authentic. However, although it is admitted as a fraud on pp. 118-9, it is not admitted that any pope used it before Leo IX in 1054. Nonetheless, Walsh states that John VIII gave King Otto I of the Saxons an ornamental copy of the Donation of Constantine on February 2, 962, upon crowning him as the Holy Roman Emperor. [58] Walsh, p.93.

"And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise anymore: the merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, ... and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men." Revelation 18: 11-13. Many bishops going to the 325 Council of Nicaea were accompanied by two priests, and attended by slaves.[59] Rome served as a central trading center for the empire including a trade in slaves, and its royal purple survives to this day. Although I have already discussed the royal purple, I will add here that it was often bought through money or murder. Books still talk about not only emperors, but Church officers assuming the purple. "On June 2nd, 1572, Gregory XIII., in accordance with the urgent request of many Cardinals, conferred the purple on his brother's son, Filippo Boncompagni, who was thirty-three years of age, and then entrusted to him the administration of the States of the Church, with the exception of military and financial matters."[60]

Before I go on, let me ask you a question of logic: do you believe the Catholic Church is true, and the pontiff is a true prophet? If he is not a true prophet, what is he? (See Rev. 19:20 - "And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshiped his image.") What shall happen to those who are deceived? "...And I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image... and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished." Revelation 20:4-5. God is warning the world. "...If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and the presence of the Lamb." Revelation 14:9-10. Even after the thousand years the smoke of their burning will rise forever - thus, their decisions have eternal consequences to them with which they are tormented even though they are redeemed for judgment.

Chapter 6

Let us return to Revelation 13 for the next revelation. The second beast/country is the United States.

And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth [prophetically the earth equals wilderness as opposed to the seas or waters which equal populated areas]; and he had two horns like a lamb [president and vice president], and he spake as a dragon [with lies - sadly the fate of U.S. politics]. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him [a world power], and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast [the Catholic Church has more U.S. members than any other church], whose deadly wound was healed [remember, it was healed by 1929]. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth [bombs, nuclear or otherwise] in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast [See Daniel 2: the five part image comprising the great powers of earth's history], which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Revelation 13:11-17.

The United States was born out of the Protestant Reformation and the desire for religious freedom which had come to a head by the time of Martin Luther. An infant nation founded on the basis of disdain for power has become the most powerful military and economic power in the world. Statesmen founded the United States on principle and ideals - pillars which built this country have given way to decisions and political speak according to the polls. Genius has given way to the top dollar. The will to do what is right has been usurped by the idea that the old statesmanship is no longer appropriate for our age. How much longer will this beast, the United States, hold together as a society when everyone is out for themselves?

Perhaps ironically in a letter dated February 27, 1821 to Timothy Pickering, Thomas Jefferson left the following words for us.

When we shall have done away the incomprehensible jargon of the Trinitarian arithmetic, that three are one, and one is three; when we shall have knocked down the artificial scaffolding, reared to mask from view the simple structure of Jesus; when, in short, we shall have unlearned everything which has been taught since his day, and got back to the pure and simple doctrines he inculcated, we shall then be truly and worthy his disciples, and my opinion is that if nothing had ever been added to what flowed purely from his lips, the whole world would at this day have been Christian.... The religion-builders have so distorted and deformed the doctrines of Jesus, so muffled them in mysticisms, fancies and falsehoods, have caricatured them into forms so monstrous and inconceivable, as to shock reasonable thinkers, to revolt them against the whole, and drive them rashly to pronounce its founder an impostor.[1]

Jesus told the Jews: "Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof." Matthew 21: 43. Has this come true? Let us examine Daniel 2 to see what it offers about the United States being the two horned beast which promotes the "image of the beast." The "great" and "terrible" "image" (image of the beast) of King Nebuchadnezzar's dream shows "what shall be in the latter days." Daniel 2:28. The image incorporates five distinct parts: the "head of fine gold" [Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon (604 B.C.) "Thou art this head of gold." 2:38], "his breast and arms of silver ["another kingdom inferior to thee"], his belly and his thighs of brass [another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth], his legs of iron [the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron], his feet part of iron and part of clay." Daniel 2:32-33. The feet of iron and clay are spoken of distinctly as a separate or 5th component of the image, but a fifth kingdom is not numbered in the King James Version.

"And the fourth kingdom [legs of iron] shall be as strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise. [It will be a world power]. And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided [into states]; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron [steel] mixed with miry clay [bricks]. Daniel 2:40-41.

So again the head of gold is Babylon, which is also the beast like a lion in Daniel 7:4. The lions wings were plucked "...and it was lifted up from the earth, and made to stand upon the feet as a man [the great and terrible image in Daniel 2], and a man's heart was given to it." Daniel 7:4. Even more than one thousand years before Nebuchadnezzar, Babylon was one of the richest cities the world had yet known. At the time of Nebuchadnezzar the ziggurat of Babylon was crowned with a shrine containing a large table of solid gold and a bed on which a woman slept to await the pleasure of a god each night.[2] According to Herodotus, the great altars of Babylon in the head of the ziggurats were made of gold.[3]

The inferior kingdom of silver is the Medo-Persian empire spoken of in Daniel 8, and Daniel 7:5(the bear with 3 ribs in its mouth). "The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia." Daniel 8:20. "...And the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.... the ram... did according to his will, and became great." Daniel 8: 3-5. Babylon was taken by the kings of the Medes and Persians as prophesied by Daniel when he told Belshazzar, king of the Chaldeans [Babylonians]: "PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians." Daniel 5:28. The second horn of the ram or Persians became greater than the Medes, and became like to a bear. Daniel 7. "...It raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh." Daniel 7:5. It raised up on one side because the Persians became greater than the Medes. It had three ribs in its mouth because it conquered the kingdoms of Sardis (Asia Minor or Turkey), Babylon, and Egypt. The Persian empire was ruled by the Achaemenid dynasty of which the Bible specifically speaks of Cyrus (Cyrus II the Great), Darius the Mede (Darius I), probably Darius II (see Ezra 6:15), Xerxes I, and Artaxerxes. Darius inherited the kingdom from Cambyses who died of an accidental wound. Darius was the son of the governor of Parthia in the northern Middle East next to Media, rather than south in Persis. Thus, he was apparently of Median descent.[4]

The third kingdom of brass which bear rule over all the earth is the Grecian empire headed by Alexander the Great and his four successors. He was the third horn to conquer Israel. He is the great horn of the he goat prophesied in Daniel 8. The "... he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground [on horses]: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. And he came to the ram that had two horns [Medes and Persians], which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.... and smote the ram, and break his two horns.... Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven." Daniel 8:5-8. In Daniel 7:6 the third beast like a leopard had four wings and four heads.

Alexander also fulfilled the prophecy of Ezekiel concerning the fall of Tyre. First "Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon... shall set engines of war against thy walls, and with his axes he shall break down thy towers." Ezekiel 26:7-9. Then Tyre moved its city offshore to an island fortress. "And I will make thee like the top of a rock: thou shalt be a place to spread nets upon." Ezekiel 26:14. "When I shall bring up the deep upon thee, and great waters shall cover thee... that thou be not inhabited." Ezekiel 26:19-20. "Thy riches ... shall fall into the midst of the seas in the day of thy ruin." Ezekiel 27:27. Alexander finished off Tyrus. He literally fulfilled prophecy by throwing the ruins of the ancient Tyre into the sea in order to build a bridge to the new island city, and plunder it.

Alexander III conquered the Persians, whose empire ran to the Indus River, and the Egyptians. He drank himself into a sickness which killed him in 323 B.C., after his last great conquest (when he was strong, the great horn was broken). He died in the vicinity of Babylon. He was the "first king" (Daniel 8:21) of "Grecia" (Daniel 8:21), which theretofore had been a loose republic of cities which typically fought amongst themselves, although Phillip II had consolidated them somewhat. Alexander was the first dictator. His empire centered in Macedonia became divided amongst his four generals(four notable ones). "And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will. And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven; and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled: for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside those." Daniel 11:3-4. One of the four generals was Seleucus Nicator who inherited the former empire of the Assyrians/ Medes/Persians, and stretched it east to the Indus River and south into Palestine forming the Seleucid empire. His successors levied taxes/tribute from the Israelites. Antigonus Cyclops and his son, Demetrius, ruled much of the near east til about 300 B.C., when they lost a major battle against a coalition of the others. Lysimachus had a kingdom. General Ptolemy inherited the Egyptian lands, and, initially, Palestine. These four kingdoms split off from the original Macedonian kingdom - to the four winds. Three of these four dynasties held power until the Romans came. The last of the four, the Ptolemaic dynasty, ended with the famous story of Cleopatra and Marcus Antony.

"Four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power." Daniel 8:22. "And out of one of them came forth a little horn [not to be confused with the pope] which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land [the Holy land]... and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground ... Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down." Daniel 8:9-11.

In the Seleucid empire "gradually a Hellenistic ruler cult developed, and epithets such as 'savior,' 'anointed,' and finally 'god' appeared on coins." [magnified himself to the prince of the host].[5] In the 2nd century B.C. Antiochus IV Epiphanes (Epiphanes can be translated "god manifest") came to rule the Seleucid Empire which had expanded east and south, and established a new capital at Antioch over 200 miles to the north of Jerusalem. Antiochus IV was a little horn because he, unlike his predecessors, persecuted the Hebrews for religious reasons. The remaining Jews were probably never so persecuted while in the Holy Land. They had been carried away by the Assyrians and the Babylonians, but unlike his predecessors including Alexander "the Great," Antiochus IV had a demonic desire to force pagan worship on the Jews. His soldiers would kill or persecute Jews who kept the Torah or refused to worship the pagan gods. He not only sacked the temple, but replaced the altar with a pagan altar to worship the sun god, Zeus or Apollo in about July through December 168 B.C. (took away the daily sacrifice). The Jews did not have an independent king after Nebuchadnezzar invaded. "He hath cut off in his fierce anger all the horn of Israel...And he hath violently taken away his tabernacle...The Lord hath cast off his altar, he hath abhorred his sanctuary...." Lamentations 2:3-7. Ezekiel was shown the "inner court of the LORD's house" which had "five and twenty men... and they worshiped the sun [ie sun god, Zeus/Appollo] toward the east." Ezekiel 8:16. "Therefore will I also deal in fury: ...and though they cry in mine ears with a loud voice, yet will I not hear them." Ezekiel 8:18.

The persecution reached its peak in about 168 B.C. Out of this severe persecution came the Maccabean revolt, which really began when Mattathias Hasmonean saw a fellow Jew sacrificing to pagan gods at the behest of Antiochus IV's general (he cast some of the stars to the ground). He slew the offenders including the general, and vowed to revolt rather than turn on God. His sons took the name Maccabee (the hammer), and started a revolt.[6] At the same time the foundation of the abomination which maketh desolate spoken of by Daniel the Prophet (Rome) was being laid and helped the cause of the Maccabean revolt by diverting military attention of the Seleucid Empire towards Rome.

Although the temple was subsequently "cleansed", and finally King Herod built a new one, our Lord had promised He would no longer accept their sacrifices, and Jesus Himself cleared the temple court when He arrived. "They sacrifice flesh for the sacrifices of mine offerings, and eat it; but the LORD accepteth them not." Hosea 8:13. "I have no pleasure in you, saith the LORD of hosts, neither will I accept an offering at your hand. For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles." Malachi 1:10-11. This is all relevant because the sanctuary will be cleansed 2300 "days"(years) after the daily sacrifice is taken away by the little horn and the sanctuary is trodden under foot. Daniel 8:13-14. We know this is not a literal 2300 days because the Jews "cleansed" the temple within 3 years of its desecration by Antiochus IV according to 1 Maccabees 4:52 (admittedly unscriptural) and other sources. Thus, in Daniel 8 our LORD has given us a time line to about 2132 A.D. There is another time line in Daniel 12 into the 25th century.

In Daniel 2 "the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things." Daniel 2:40. Remember, the fourth kingdom of the image was represented in the legs. The Roman Empire was split in two after Constantine - into an eastern and western empire. This also led to the splitting of the church into two main apostate branches - the western Roman Catholic Church and the eastern Greek Orthodox Church centered in Constantinople. The western empire soon was divided into states or kingdoms of the 10 Germanic tribes which became kingdoms under the rule of the bishop of Rome, but the eastern empire centered in Greece lasted longer as what we call the Byzantine Empire (probably because the western historians could not bear to call it the Roman Empire). Later, these two legs split further into the feet and toes of the modern nations.

The fourth beast of Daniel 7:7 "...had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it [becoming a religious kingdom]; and it had ten horns." The fourth and last kingdom to scatter Israel/Judah was Rome. "Then lifted I up mine eyes, and saw, and behold four horns. And I said unto the angel that talked with me, What be these? And he answered me, These are the horns which have scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem." Zechariah 1: 18-19.

Knowledge of the beasts of Daniel 7 brings more understanding to Isaiah 11:6-7. In the last days "The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox." There are those three beasts again. How about the wolf? Remember the legend of Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome? They were the children of a wolf who suckled them. The wolf was an object of worship in more than one of the pagan cults of Rome. It was the animal of Mars. Isaiah continues: "And the sucking child [a man child in the gospel] shall play on the hole of the asp (horned viper), and the weaned child [a man with gospel understanding] shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den [hold evil in its pit]. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea." Isaiah 11:8-9.

Rome of course became the greatest power the world had ever seen. With its weapons of iron it handily defeated the older countries still using softer, heavier bronze/brass weaponry. "The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth...." Daniel 7:23. Rome evolved from being a political kingdom to being a religious kingdom(diverse from the rest), which devoured the whole earth. Due to the Protestant Reformation and Napoleon she received a deadly wound. In Vatican II the Roman Church tried to reform itself into a kinder, gentler church. Many stamps revealing it as a beast were quietly removed - the inquisition, the papal tiara, the title of Vicarius Filii Dei, and many others. The wound of the beast healed, and it became an image of its former self. Indeed, the Roman Catholic Church has more members than any other church all over the world - about 1 billion. It and its harlot offspring have encompassed the world. "...And they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is." Revelation 17:8.

This brings understanding to the remaining verses of Daniel 2, which have caused the greatest controversy: "the kingdom shall be divided... And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men [they'll intermarry]: but they shall not cleave one to another [they'll divorce like crazy and have social strife], even as iron is not mixed with clay. And in the days of these kings [which is after the kingdom of iron is divided] shall the God in heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever [the kingdom of Heaven]." Daniel 2:41-44. Jews have been waiting for the promised earthly political kingdom to consume all others. Protestant Christians believe that these verses all refer to the Roman Empire when Jesus came and set up his kingdom, which shall never be destroyed. Literally, this interpretation is not unreasonable. However, "...the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; Until the Ancient of days came...," Daniel 7:21-22. During this time the little horn "shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time," Daniel 7:25, which is the same "time, times and half a time" period the woman with twelve stars was in the wilderness. Revelation 12:14. If the Protestant churches place the kingdom He set up (Daniel 2) at the time of the Romans, they are virtually admitting that the Roman Catholic Church is Jesus' church, because this kingdom "shall never be destroyed" once set up. Further, the Protestant reformation started considerably before the 1260 year biblical time line ended in 1798 A.D.

Most importantly, however, a continuing true church on the earth is unscriptural. Jesus and the early church reigned during the time of the iron legs (Roman Empire) of the image of Daniel 2 before the fourth kingdom became divided. Daniel 7 tells us that the little horn (pontiff) rules for a time and times and the dividing of time until the judgment sits and the saints take away his dominion to consume and destroy it unto the end. And the kingdom is given to the people of the saints of the most High. Daniel 7:25-27. Thus, the little horn which changes times and laws comes before the end, when the saints shall prevail. Scripture tells us "...the day of Christ... shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition." 2 Thessalonians 2:2-3. Paul warned: "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock." The Acts 20:29. Jesus told us the prince of this world would come first, and said "I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world." John 9:4-5. Jesus told us at the beginning of Revelation the things therein would "shortly come to pass." Revelation 1:1.

The fifth part of the image of Daniel 2 represents the latter days when the stone smites the image. Daniel 2:28. This image is akin to the image of the beast of Revelation 13. It is a continuation of spiritual Babylon. In these days men do not cleave to one another. It may also represent a fifth political power (presumably an amalgamation of not only the states of Europe and the Middle East, but the United States). Note that each successive geographic area represented in the image is larger than the previous one. God has blessed the United States, but has spiritually forsaken her, unless she repents. The foundation for this image has been laid. During its course whoever refuses to recognize (worship) it will be subjected to death. Those without the mark, name or number of his name will apparently have complete economic sanctions placed against them, and will find it impossible to "buy or sell." This is the image of the beast. This image has to do with the Catholic Church and peoples with Hellenistic values - peoples that worship or revere things. The Catholic Church is the largest church in the United States. The author of The Third Crown, Edmund Odescalchi, has noted "The papacy was so far the only power in the history of the world that established authority over what we would call today sovereign national governments." "Today, the United Nations Organization performs many of the former functions of the papal government: bestowing legitimacy, allocating territories, censoring governments, ordering military operations..." and both organizations possess all the requirements of a supranational world government including taxing authority, enforceable laws, courts, armed forces, a chief executive, and global reach with power over national governments. [7]

"Thou sawest [the image] till that a stone was cut out [of the mountain, Daniel 2:45] without hands which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing- floors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth." Daniel 2:34-35. "Upon one stone shall be seven eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day. In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, shall ye call every man his neighbour under the vine and under the fig tree." Zechariah 3:9-10. "For they shall rejoice... with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth." Zechariah 4:10. In Revelation 5:6-7 the seven horns and seven eyes on the slain Lamb (Jesus) are the seven spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. These search out the hearts of men. In Zechariah 6 four chariots come from between two brass mountains, and go forth from the Lord of the earth to walk to and fro through the earth.

I do not know how the image will further unfold beyond what Revelation 13:14-17 tells us, but those who want to know the truth will know when they experience the fear of the image. It is not given me to know these details for our God doth plan to try our hearts. The persecution of the latter days is part of His plan. Remember the purpose proposed upon the whole earth starting with the fiery flying serpent of Isaiah 14? Whoever faces the image, should remember the words of Paul: be "... in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God. For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake; Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me." Philippians 1:28-30.

Of additional Biblical relevance is the golden image king Nebuchadnezzar "set up" and ordered everyone to worship. Whoso would not do it was to be thrown into the fiery furnace. Daniel 3. (In the last days those who refuse to worship the image of the beast should be killed and without the mark of the beast shall not be able to buy or sell). Remember King Nebuchadnezzar was the head of gold of the great and terrible image of Daniel 2. However, like the three thrown into the fiery furnace we know that God will be with those thrown to the death of flames. This is promised not only in Daniel 2 (the kingdom shall never be destroyed), but Revelation and numerous books of the Bible. It is evident that the righteous will have to be self-sufficient and rely on God.

Also relevant is the fact that all the numbered parts of the one image of Daniel 2 were image worshipers, and now worship with a misunderstood concept of the oneness of God. Praying the right prayers to images, allegedly allowed the pardon of sins or provided miraculous cures. This continues down to the feet and toes of the image. Jesus prayed that we may become one with God as He is. However, Satan wants to be the greatest one worshiped. "...O Lucifer, son of the morning... thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High." Isaiah 14:12-14. How does one's soul know which one is the right one? Islam (Babylonia) prays to one god, Allah, and denies the divinity of Jesus. Both the Roman and Orthodox churches as well as most Protestant churches have adopted an unscriptural concept of the godhead - the trinity.

Chapter 7

Let us now break from our discussion in Daniel to examine another source the Scriptures give us for the trouble of these latter days. These latter days are a time of evening wolves. Islam has spread through almost all nations, including the United States, and is the predominant religion of North Africa, the middle east/central Asia, and Indonesia. Like the Catholic Church, Islam claims adherents of about one billion members. Islam was born in Arabia in the early seventh century A.D. Mecca had been a leading religious center since ancient times. Its renown was due to its ancient pilgrim sanctuary called the Kaaba, which contained several idols, including one called Allah, and a black stone. After the collapse of the Ghassanid and Lakhmid kingdoms large populations of Jews migrated to the trading center of Mecca. Many Christians lived in Mecca too. When the Kaaba was reconstructed around 600 A.D., the new decorations reportedly even included a picture of Jesus. Mohammed (ca. 570-632) was born into the ruling tribe of Mecca, the Quraysh, but not in an influential branch. He became employed in the caravan trade as a camel-driver by a wealthy widow named Khadija, whom he married. At about the age of 40 he began receiving messages from a visitor who called himself Gabriel. The inhabitants of Mecca were mostly not receptive to his messages - especially the ruling classes. He and a few followers were received in Yathrib about 250 miles to the north because of the need for an arbitrator between the two principal Arab tribes. Yathrib became known as Medina (Madinat-an-Nabi, the city of the prophet). Medina became the base for Mohammed's religious and raiding operations, including an attack against the Jews in Khaibar which provided him with abundant loot. [1] However, he and his followers mostly survived by plundering caravans. As their wealth grew, more adherents joined. Eventually, Mohammed defeated the forces of Mecca, and he "cleansed" the Kaaba. The Arab population of Mecca became converted. He died not long after this, and a schism arose as to who would be his successor. This has been foreseen: "This is the curse that goeth forth over the face of the whole earth." Zechariah 5:3. Yet, in the end Islam will be defeated.

The vision of Zechariah 5:1-11, is given by an angel of the LORD.

THEN I turned, and lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a flying roll [the Qur'an/Koran]. And he said unto me, What seest thou? And I answered, I see a flying roll; the length thereof is twenty cubits, and the breadth thereof ten cubits. Then said he unto me, This is the curse that goeth forth over the face of the whole earth: for every one that stealeth shall be cut off as on this side according to it [law to cut off hand Qur'an 5.6.38]; and every one that sweareth shall be cut off as on that side according to it [those swearing against Allah/Mohammed shall have hands and feet cut off on opposite sides Qur'an 5.5.33]. I will bring it forth, saith the LORD of hosts, and it shall enter into the house of the thief [Mohammed thieved the Lord's glory & made himself a greater prophet than the Lord Jesus Christ although he nary prophesied one thing], and into the house of him that sweareth falsely by my name: and it shall remain in the midst of his house, and shall consume it with the timber thereof and the stones thereof. [the Koran's false words shall cause Islam to destroy itself]. Then the angel that talked with me went forth, and said unto me, Lift up now thine eyes, and see what is this that goeth forth. And I said, What is it? And he said, This is an ephah [the Kaaba containing black stone or black gospel versus white stone of the Bible] that goeth forth. He said moreover, This is their resemblance through all the earth. And, behold, there was lifted up a talent of lead [resemblance of the black stone which sits in the Kaaba]: and this is a woman [city or church] that sitteth in the midst of the ephah [Kaaba is in Mecca]. And he said, This is wickedness. And he cast it into the midst of the ephah; and he cast the weight of lead upon the mouth thereof. Then lifted I up mine eyes, and looked, and, behold, there came out two women [2 corrupt daughters resembling the birth cities of Medina and Mecca which birthed the two branches of Islam, Shi'ites (claim by bloodline) and Sunnis ( 80% - 85% of Muslims); analogous to Samaria and Jerusalem, two women, the daughters of one mother in Ezekiel 23:2-4], and the wind was in their wings; for they had wings like the wings of a stork: and they lifted up the ephah between the earth and the heaven. Then said I to the angel that talked with me, Wither do these bear the ephah? And he said unto me, To build it an house [Islam] in the land of Shinar [Daniel 1:1-2: "king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar...carried into the land of Shinar"(i.e. Babylonia); The 4th Muslim Caliph, "Ali moved his capital from Medina (Saudi Arabia) to Kufa in Iraq (Babylonia) and confronted Muawiya in battle at Siffin." "In 762, al-Mansur, the second Abbasial Caliph, founded Baghdad [in the plains of Shinar] as his new capital."[2]: and it shall be established, and set there upon her own base [not the base of the Torah, the Bible, or the Scriptures].

Where is the history of the Arab in the Qur'an? It is not - it is in the Bible. The two books conflict. The Bible can stand without the Qur'an but the Qur'an cannot stand without the Bible, because we would not know who the characters are - Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and others only mentioned in the Qur'an. For example, the Kaaba is said to have been built by Abraham as the burial site of his second wife, Hagar, and their son, Ishmael. Name places and historical facts of the Bible are being proven again and again by archeologists. The Bible is one of the oldest most accurate historical texts in existence.

The Qur'an leaves out virtually all factual history. The Arab people have no history in the Qur'an which historically may have been disproven(if it had been put in). If Allah is so great why would he leave Islam dependent upon the Bible to know who Abraham and Jesus are, if the Bible is terribly inaccurate? Since the Qur'an does not change these points of biblical history, it must be assumed that they are correct. Hence, Jesus must have been born of a virgin Mary as even the Qur'an admits, although swearing falsely in the name of Jesus. This is indeed a miracle. (Qur'an III 3.5.46: "She [Mary] said: My Lord, how can I have a son and man has not yet touched me? He said: Even so; Allah creates what He pleases. When He decrees a matter, He only says to it, Be, and it is.") Where are Mohammed's miracles? There are none in the Qur'an. There rose up varying stories of miracles occurring around Mohammed, but there are also stories that when he was first visited, Mohammed feared he was being possessed by an evil spirit. He tried to resist at first. In fact he reported that this spirit, identifying itself as Gabriel, seized him by the throat and pressed hard three times near death! Fear and force - tools of the devil. Fear was being used to try to prevent his departure. Further, when he died his wife, Aisha, reported his last words as: "No, the most Exalted Companion is of paradise" to which she replied "You were given the choice and you have been chosen by Him who sent you with the truth."[3] Is it possible that Mohammed was making a plea in an attempt to ward off evil spirits or was being rejected at the gates of the afterlife? Else why would he plead "No...."? Mohammed made the wrong choice. He succumbed to the fear and force being used against him. He chose a god that believed in plundering caravans, and conquering other countries in order to spread Islam.

"Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father...." 1 John 2:22-23. Although the Qur'an calls Jesus the "Christ" [VII 5.19.75], it also says:

O people of the book, exceed not the limits in your religion nor speak anything about Allah, but the truth. The Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, is only a messenger of Allah and His word which He communicated to Mary and a mercy from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers. And say not Three [godhead]. Desist it is better for you. Allah is only one God. Far be it from His glory to have a son. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth. Qur'an VI 4.23.171.

And for their saying: We have killed the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the messenger of Allah, and they killed him not, nor did they cause his death on the cross, but he was made to appear to them as such. And certainly those who differ therein are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge about it, but only follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for certain. Nay Allah, exalted him in His presence. Qur'an 4.22.157-158.

So Islam denies that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. It also denies that Jesus physically died, and was resurrected, although the Qur'an says Jesus had raised the dead by the permission of Allah. Qur'an VII 5.15.110. The great Deceiver gives hints to his lying works. "You cannot attain to righteousness unless you spend out of what you love[reference to a type of monetary tithe, but this implies love of money is okay]. And what you spend, Allah surely knows it." Qur'an IV 3.10.91. "And whoever commits a sin, commits it only against himself." Qur'an 4.16.111 [What? I suppose one cannot sin against Allah - since one cannot sin against the devil]. "And with those who say, we are Christians, We made a covenant, but they neglected a portion of that whereof they were reminded so We stirred up enmity and hatred among them to the day of Resurrection." Qur'an VI 5.3.14. "And We shall certainly try you with something of fear and hunger and loss of property and lives and fruits. And give good news to the patient." Qur'an II 2.19.155. Here is the truth - Allah is a spirit of fear and hatred rather than love. Fear we experience in our trials is due to the adversary and ourselves - its source is not found in God, although He does allow Satan to test us. God does not cause brothers to hate one another. Another hint is that fighting is prescribed in the Qur'an: "Fighting is enjoined on you, though it is disliked by you; and it may be that you dislike a thing while it is good for you...." Qur'an II 2.26.216.

There is no scripture to support a single miracle surrounding Mohammed. Yet the Qur'an admits Jesus brought the dead to life, and healed the blind and the leprous. Qur'an III 3.5.48. There are no prophecies in the Qur'an which have come true, except the prophecy of the "Roman" (Byzantine Greeks called themselves Romans) defeat which had already occurred by the time the Qur'an was written out of its oral history. Unlike our mighty God of Scripture, Allah does not know specifics of what the future holds (before interpretation), and showed no miracles to dozens or hundreds of witnesses.

Chapter 8

Let us now return to Daniel for Daniel has yet more to offer regarding the apostacy to take place after Jesus. Let us look at the specific prophecy regarding the coming of the Messiah in Daniel 9. Daniel prayed and fasted to know the meaning of the seventy weeks of Jeremiah. Knowing the law of Moses decreed evil would come upon them, he prayed the LORD would forgive and save Jerusalem from desolation. Then Gabriel came therefore to understand the vision.

Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah [Anointed one] the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall even in troublous times. And after threescore (60) and two weeks shall Messiah be cutoff, but not for himself: and the people of the prince [Rome] that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary [Titus destroyed the temple]; and the end thereof shall be with a flood [again a flood being the workings of Satan in men], and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week [3 1/2 days or years] he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation [the END], and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. [The last sentence has also been interpreted as: "and upon the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator." Oxford Annotated Bible] Daniel 9:24-7.

I will start by saying Rome is the abomination which maketh desolate. The Roman Church is the Great Harlot and Mother of Abominations of the Earth. At the decreed end the desolator will receive the judgments of Revelation 18. Now let us determine when the 70 weeks start. After Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem, the Hebrews returned to Jerusalem in two main migrations, but Daniel stayed in the capitol of the Persians. The first migration under Zerubbabel had commission to rebuild the Temple [known as the Temple of Zerubbabel]. The commission came through king Cyrus of Persia in his first year to build an house at Jerusalem to the LORD God. Cyrus the king brought the vessels of gold and silver king Nebuchadnezzar had taken, and gave them to Sheshbazzar, the prince of Judah (Zerubbabel), to be taken to Jerusalem. Ezra 1. Zerubbabel led forth the families listed in Ezra 2 to Judah. By the seventh month the people were in their cities, and gathered in Jerusalem where Zerubbabel directed them first in building an altar. Then according to the grant of Cyrus king of Persia, they began collecting wood and materials to rebuild the Temple. Ezra 3. Apparently the rebuilding effort stopped or slowed during the eight year reign of Cambyses. In the sixth month of the second year of Darius the spirit of the LORD was stirred in Zerubbabel through the words of Haggai, to finish the Temple. Apparently, by this time Zerubbabel was recognized as governor of Judah. Haggai 1. The Temple was finished under Darius, king of Persia (who renewed the decree of Cyrus or possibly Darius II), on the third day of the month Adar in the sixth year of Darius. Ezra 6. The second migration returned under Ezra, the scribe, who left Babylon the first day of the first month in the seventh year of king Artaxerxes, who ruled after Darius I, and therefore after Daniel's account. Ezra 7:7-9. They were commissioned by the LORD and king Artaxerxes to beautify the Temple by a letter found in Ezra 7.

However, in the twentieth year of king Artaxerxes, Nehemiah learned of the troublous times of his people: "The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire." Nehemiah 1:1-3. King Artaxerxes saw his troubled countenance, and Nehemiah told him it was because Jerusalem lay waste, and the gates lay burnt. So the king prepared a letter to the keeper of his forest to cut timber for the rebuilding, and sent Nehemiah to Jerusalem. Nehemiah 2:1-8. When he arrived, he found the city in a state of waste. He told the people what God had put in his heart to do, and called the people to rebuild. Nehemiah 2:17-8. But these were troublous times. When the Arabians, the Ammonites, the Ashdodites, and Tobiah, and Sanballat heard of the rebuilding, they came to fight against Jerusalem, so Nehemiah "...set the people after their families with their swords, their spears, and their bows." Nehemiah 4:7,8,13. "So the wall was finished in the twenty and fifth day of the month Elul, in fifty and two days." Nehemiah 6:15. "Now the city was large and great: but the people were few therein, and the houses were not builded." Nehemiah 7:4.

Cyrus II (the Great) reigned from 549-530 B.C.; Cambyses II from 530-522 B.C.; Darius from 522-486 B.C.; and Xerxes from 486-465 B.C. The commandment to rebuild the walls and the city was to Nehemiah in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes. Artaxerxes I ruled from 465 B.C. to 424 B.C.[1] His twentieth year was 445 B.C. This is about when Old Testament prophecy stopped. This is the beginning of the seventy weeks, which commence with seven weeks (7 x 7 = 49 days/years) to restore and rebuild Jerusalem (when the walls are rebuilt) unto the Messiah, which brings us to 396 B.C. After the second period of threescore and two weeks the Messiah is cut off. Sixty two weeks equals 434 days or prophetic years, which brings us to 38 Anno Domini (according to Roman dating). After His ascension our Lord continued to periodically speak to His apostles, and personally called Paul as a disciple. He then was cut off for awhile, and the Holy Spirit did His work. So the third and last period of the seventy weeks is not consecutive. "Then said I, I will not feed you: that that dieth, let it die; and that that is to be cut off, let it be cut off; and let the rest eat every one the flesh of another. And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people. And it was broken in that day: and so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that is was the word of the LORD. And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver. And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD. Then I cut asunder mine other staff, even Bands, that I might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel." Zechariah 11:9-14.

The third period is a period of only one week (7 years) when he shall confirm the covenant with many. This is a prophecy of the seven year Jewish war beginning under the reign of Nero. One might say He began to confirm the covenant in Rome in the autumn of 63 A.D. or 64 A.D., when many Christians were called to confirm their covenants with our Lord, and were sacrificed under Nero who chose to blame the Christians for the great fire in Rome. A tradition places the sacrifice of Peter in 67 A.D., rather than 64 A.D. However, this prophecy was directed specifically to the Jews, some of whom had accepted Jesus Christ (Acts 11,12). In the Holy Land the Jewish war did not start until approximately August 15, 66 A.D., when Antonia was attacked, although some argue that it began with the unrest in Jerusalem and its surroundings in approximately May, 66. For the dates concerning the Jewish war I rely on the history of Josephus, the Jewish historian to the Romans. His history uses Macedonian (Greek) names for the months of the year which seem to correspond best with an accurate date if imposed upon the Roman months of the year. If, alternatively the Macedonian name is imposed on the Tyrian system or on the luni-solar calender, the date may vary up to one half month from the date I use herein (Roman). In the spring of the 13th year of Nero, 67 A.D., Vespasian, who is the seventh crown of the great red dragon, was sent to subdue the Hebrews. He began by taking cities and fortresses in Galilee: Jotapata, Japha, Garizim, Tarichaeae, and Gamala. After the death of Nero, Vespasian left his invasion of Judaea in 69 A.D., and returned to defeat Vitellius and become emperor. He then sent his son, Titus.

In the midst of the week, that is in the fourth or middle year, He causes the sacrifice and oblation to cease. The fourth year of the war would be August 15, 69 A.D., to August 14, 70 A.D. According to Josephus, Titus took the outer wall of Jerusalem on May 7, 70. The Temple sacrifice ceased on 17 Panemus, which would correspond with July 17, 70 A.D. Titus burned the Temple on August 10 (10 Lous), 70 A.D. Then the prophesied desolation began. On September 8 (8 Gorpaeus), 70 A.D., Titus took the upper city of Jerusalem. According to Tacitus 600,000 Jews perished. According to Josephus the Romans killed 1,197,000 Jews in the siege and the aftermath of revolts. About 97,000 captives were sold as slaves, or died as unwilling gladiators in the Roman games. The city walls were destroyed. The Jewish War continued until the fall of Masada in 73 A.D. [2] So the Hebrews had till 73 A.D., to accept their Messiah. Major revelations stopped, and the canonical books of the New Testament were set. Continuing revelation was through the Holy Spirit which revealed the truthfulness of the gospel to those who earnestly sought. He knowing the Hebrews would not accept their Messiah, has fulfilled His promise to give His light unto the Gentiles in the latter days. "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate: and verily I say unto you, Ye shall not see me, until the time come when ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." Luke 13:34-5.

But Daniel has yet more to offer, which takes us to the very last days. Praise God for telling those who understand. The last vision of Daniel is given to him by a "man clothed in linen, whose loins were girded with fine gold of Uphaz" who shows Daniel "what shall befall thy people in the latter days: for yet the vision is for many days." Daniel 10:5,14. He tells Daniel: "But I will show thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince [revealed as Adam]." Daniel 10:21. I shall quote Daniel 11 in its entirety with the introduction that Babylon, the first of the four beasts, has been subjugated to the Medes and Persia who are the first king in the vision of Daniel 11. Daniel has been rescued from Babylon and is now in the service of King Darius of Persia (the Achaemenid Dynasty).

"1 Also I in the first year of Darius the Mede, even I, stood to confirm and to strengthen him. 2 And now will I shew thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia [in Daniel 7:17 the beasts are called kings which represent kingdoms, while horns are individual offices; this is the KEY to interpreting the prophecy; literally there were 8 more kings in the Achaemenid dynasty after Darius]; and the fourth [Rome] shall be far richer than they all: and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Grecia." (NOW PROPHECY CONCERNING EACH OF THE THREE KINGDOMS WHICH COME TO RULE IN PERSIA IS GIVEN WITH SOME DETAIL - BABYLON WAS THE CAPITOL).

"3 And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will. 4 And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven; and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled [Alexander III's Grecian kingdom represents the second king or first after the Achaemenids and rules all the Middle East to India]: for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside those." Remember, after Alexander died four parts broke off his Grecian kingdom under four generals: Ptolemy got Egypt; Seleucus got the eastern domains including Persia; Lysimachus got Thrace; and Antigonus Cyclops (the one-eyed) got the Near East until about 300 B.C., when his son, Demetrius, managed to establish a kingdom in Greece and Macedonia. Later, I will discuss the Roman Empire which stirs up all against the realm of Grecia, and plucks up the remnants of these four.

"5 And the king of the south [Ptolemy; Egypt] shall be strong, and one of his princes; and he shall be strong above him [also interpreted: "but one of his princes shall be stronger than he" ie. Seleucus I is stronger than Ptolemy I; this and some following notes are taken from the Oxford Annotated Bible which I shall denote as OAB], and have dominion; his dominion shall be a great dominion." The king of the north, Seleucus, induced Ptolemy and Lysimachus(Thrace) to form an alliance against the fourth, Antigonus Cyclops, who was trying to gain land in mainland Greece. Antigonus was defeated and died in 300 B.C. Antigonus' son, Demetrius, managed to later scrape together a kingdom out of Cassandros' domains in Macedonia. Most of Antigonus' domain in Syria and Asia Minor benefitted Seleucus, who styled himself king of Babylon and Media - the third kingdom of the vision or second after Darius. Seleucus' first capital was Babylon, but its materials were looted for the new capitol of Seleucia-on-the-Tigris. This was the beginning of the end for the city of Babylon. A second western capital named Antioch was built about 200 miles north of Jerusalem. Being by far the largest of the kingdoms after Alexander, his is the "great dominion."[3]

"6 And in the end of years [also interpreted "after some years", OAB] they shall join themselves together; for the king's daughter of the south shall come to the king of the north [Seleucid Empire] to make an agreement; but she shall not retain the power of the arm; neither shall he stand, nor his arm: but she shall be given up, and they that brought her, and he that begat her, and he that strengthened her in these times." In about 250 B.C., Ptolemy II gave his daughter Berenice to Antiochus II to marry according to a treaty which gave their first son the kingdom. This agreement was precipitated by the loss of the eastern-most domains of Antiochus during his war with Ptolemy. Antiochus left his first wife (also his half-sister), Laodice, the mother of Seleucus II and Antiochus Hierax. Two years later Ptolemy II died, so Antiochus remarried Laodice, who poisoned him in order to ensure her son as heir. Thus, Berenice did not retain power.[4]]

"7 But out of a branch of her roots shall one stand up in his estate, which shall come with an army, and shall enter into the fortress of the king of the north, and shall deal against them, and shall prevail: 8 And shall also carry captives into Egypt their gods, with their princes, and with their precious vessels of silver and of gold; and he shall continue more years than the king of the north." According to the Oxford Annotated Bible, Ptolemy III, the branch, captured the eastern capital of Seleucia and brought back immense booty. Other sources say he brought back thousands of idols as well.

"9 So the king of the south shall come into his kingdom, and shall return into his own land. [OAB: Then the latter shall come into the realm of the king of the south but shall return into his own land. ie. Seleucus II attacked Egypt in 242 B.C. very unsuccessfully]. 10 But his sons shall be stirred up, and shall assemble a multitude of great forces: and one shall certainly come, and overflow, and pass through: then shall he return, and be stirred up, even to his fortress." Of the sons of Seleucus II, Seleucus III and Antiochus III, the latter attacked Egypt. OAB.

"11 And the king of the south shall be moved with choler, and shall come forth and fight with him, even with the king of the north: and he shall set forth a great multitude; but the multitude shall be given into his hand. 12 And when he hath taken away the multitude, his heart shall be lifted up; and he shall cast down many ten thousands: but he shall not be strengthened by it." Ptolemy IV sent armies through Palestine and defeated Antiochus at Raphia. OAB.

"13 For the king of the north shall return, and shall set forth a multitude greater than the former, and shall certainly come after certain years with a great army and with much riches." Antiochus III in turn crushed the Egyptians at Banias. OAB.

"14 And in those times there shall many stand up against the king of the south: also the robbers of thy people shall exalt themselves to establish the vision; but they shall fall." Under the child king Ptolemy V the Egyptians caused insurrections. Ptolemy lost Palestine to Antiochus III, who then married his daughter to Ptolemy. OAB. His successor, Ptolemy VI Philometor, took the throne at the age of six. His mother, Cleopatra, died when he was fourteen. The two governors advising him desired to reclaim Palestine from the Seleucids who had captured it from Egypt under Antiochus III "the Great." In the meantime Antiochus IV "Epiphanes" came to the throne. [5]

Now at the time of Antiochus IV some Hebrews apparently were trying to establish Daniel's vision in order to know the outcome because they identified themselves with the people who would fall by flame and captivity for many days. In fact many English interpretations of the Hebrew apocryphal work, 1 Maccabees 1 :54, call the statue erected by Antiochus in the Jerusalem Temple "the abomination of desolation," which are the same words used in Daniel 11:31 & 12:11.[6] As I will show, other Jewish scholars as well as English scholars have followed suit. Further, I add that the Roman Catholic Church has accepted 1 Maccabees and two other books of the Maccabees as scriptural by canonical law, when they are clearly not divinely inspired even if they are mostly factually correct. Also the Roman Church has adopted two additional chapters as part of Daniel which are not found in the original twelve Aramaic and Hebrew chapters of Daniel. These additional two chapters include the stories of Susanna and the Elders (Chapter 13 in Catholic Bible) and Bel and the Dragon (Chap. 14). Herein it will be demonstrated the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet has nothing to do with Antiochus. "I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing: ... Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the LORD." Jeremiah 23:14 & 16. When the Romans came, this cycle probably repeated itself. This is why many Hebrews thought they were fighting to the end against the Romans. But the end did not come, and this apparently caused the Hebrews to lose faith in Daniel and the last prophets of the Old Testament.

"15 So the king of the north shall come, and cast up a mount, and take the most fenced cities [walled cities]: and the arms of the south shall not withstand, neither his chosen people, neither shall there be any strength to withstand." In response to Egypt's overtures Antiochus IV invaded Egypt and gained possession of the king, Ptolemy Philometor, after defeating him in battle between Mount Casius and Pelusium in about 170 B.C. Then Egypt had no strength to withstand him. But he showed leniency to his captives, and thus won favor with the people. All the walled cities capitulated to him except Alexandria. Antiochus apparently returned with Philometor, who also happened to be a nephew through a prior marriage between the daughter of Antiochus III and Ptolemy V. On their return through Palestine, Antiochus IV raided the Temple in Jerusalem taking all its riches, which 1 Maccabees 1:20-23 describes as follows: "After subduing Egypt, Antiochus returned in the one hundred and forty-third year [of the kingdom of the Greeks]. He went up against Israel and came to Jerusalem with a strong force. He arrogantly entered the sanctuary and took the golden altar, the lampstand for the light, and all its utensils. He took also the table for the bread of the Presence, the cups for drink offerings, the bowls, the golden censers, the curtain, the crowns, and the gold decoration on the front of the [T]emple; he stripped it all off. He took the silver and the gold, and the costly vessels; he took also the hidden treasures which he found." OAB. So neither did the chosen people have strength to withstand him.

Alexandria installed Philometor's younger brother, Ptolemy Euergetes, also called Physcon. Rather than allowing Egypt to fall into the hands of Antiochus however, Philometer reconciled with his brother and returned to Alexandria to be a joint king. Antiochus seeing his plans being foiled, again planned an attack using all his strength. However, the two Egyptian brother kings apparently anticipated the response of Antiochus, and therefore sent envoys to the Peloponuesus of Greece to approach the Achaean League with a request for troops. Polybius supported the appeal but apparently either intrigues or the threat of war with the Romans intervened. No material help was offered to Egypt.[7] The Historians' History of the World, v.IV, pp.559-561, states Ptolemy Euergetes and his sister, Cleopatra, sent ambassadors to Rome for help. Antiochus returned in the spring of 168 [around March] under the pretense of restoring the rightful heir, Ptolemy Philometor, who had been governing Cypress. He sent a fleet to Cyprus which was controlled by Egypt, while he personally headed his army to Egypt.

At Rhinocolura between Palestine and Egypt, he met envoys from Ptolemy Philometor who discreetly thanked him in the name of their king for the support of Antiochus in restoring Philometor to the throne. They then pleaded for what cause Antiochus was making his warlike display saying the Alexandrian court would consider his desires in a friendly manner. The only response of Antiochus was a demand for the formal cession of Cyprus and Pelusium within a fixed time. History is unclear as to where Antiochus went to wait. At the appointed time of his ultimatum, Antiochus crossed the Egyptian border. The first two books of the Maccabees intonate that rumors spread he had died, and therefore citizens of Jerusalem took measures displeasing to Antiochus. Rome had been prosecuting a war against the house of Antigonus for one of the four Grecian kingdoms. At the battle of Pydna on June 22, 168, Perseus lost to Rome, and his Grecian kingdom became the first of the four to be extinguished as an independent kingdom by Rome. This changed things dramatically. Now, Rome had free troops.[8]

"16 But he that cometh against him [note the king of the south is not referenced; this is a third king whose estate is passed to a vile one whom both the kings of the north and the south come against at the time of the end, see Daniel 11:40] shall do according to his own will, and none shall stand before him [none of the Grecian kingdoms nor other peoples stand against Rome]: and he shall stand in the glorious land, which by his hand shall be consumed." At this point the vision takes a drastic turn because it must cover more than 2000 years to the end of Rome. [see Daniel 12:7, 11-12]. Upon hearing the result of the Macedonian war the Roman embassy awaiting on the Grecian island, Delos, in the middle of the Aegean Sea, immediately sailed for Egypt under Gaius Popillius Laenas. When the Romans arrived, Antiochus was encamped on the east side of Alexandria at a place called Eleusis. What happened next Roman pride has spread to all the history books. Antiochus knew Popillius from Rome, but Popillius was not going to let him wiggle. He handed Antiochus a decree of the Roman Senate requiring him to quit all aggression toward Egypt. Popillius used his walking stick to draw a circle around Antiochus, and required an answer of him before he stepped out. Antiochus capitulated. The Romans went to Cyprus to make sure he quit his siege of this possession of Ptolemy. Here, the forces of Antiochus had been completely successful, but the Romans would not leave until all the troops of Antiochus were gone.[9]

I will now reiterate some of the facts outlined in the interpretation of Daniel 8, in order to make several points relevant to this last vision of Daniel. Two years had now passed since the time of the first raid of Antiochus into Jerusalem. Jason had been deprived of the office of the high priest by a higher bribe to Antiochus by Menelaus. Jason had returned from Ammon on an apparent report of the death of Antiochus, and bottled Menelaus in the citadel of Jerusalem. With Rome as a new threat to Antiochus, it is apparent that he desired to shore up Jerusalem as his southern buffer against Egypt. One Jewish historian gives a date of 17 Tammuz, July 168 as the time of the desecration. This was apparently when the desecration began. He states that Antiochus sent a noble Antiochian citizen to dedicate the Temple to Jupiter, who sacrificed a swine on the altar, and lists other desecrations. He then states: "The statue of Jupiter, 'the abomination of destruction,' was then placed on the altar. And to him sacrifices were henceforth to be offered...."[10] With all due respect to the author, however, his statement shows an identification of the abomination of desolation of Daniel 11:31 with a god of the Seleucid Empire rather than with Rome. Here, the chronology of the apocryphal book of 1 Maccabees seems a bit confused, but it can be reconciled with other historical sources if it is assumed that Antiochus sent Apollonius, his commander of the Mysian mercenaries, or another of his commanders into Jerusalem ostensibly to collect tribute, while he awaited outside at a safe distance. 1 Maccabees 1:29-32 states: "Two years later the king sent to the cities of Judah a chief collector of tribute, and he came to Jerusalem with a large force. Deceitfully he spoke peaceable words to them, and they believed him; but he suddenly fell upon the city, dealt it a severe blow, and destroyed many people of Israel. He plundered the city, burned it with fire, and tore down its houses and its surrounding walls. And they took captive the women and children, and seized the cattle." 1 Maccabees continues that the king wrote to all the kingdom for all to adopt one religion, and "now on the fifteenth day of Chislev [December], in the one hundred and forty fifth year, they erected a desolating sacrilege upon the altar of burnt offering." 1 Maccabees 1:54. OAB. It is not necessary that Antiochus remained at Jerusalem until December of 168. The facts seem to indicate he did not. The date of 168 B.C. from other historical sources makes it clear that Antiochus visited Jerusalem on his return trip, and that the daily sacrifice was taken away sometime between July and December 15, 168 B.C. [although at least one historian places it in 167 B.C.], which is relevant to establishing the foundational time-line of Daniel 12. This was the start of the persecutions of the Jewish people by Antiochus, which continued for months.

But now we will continue to follow the vision of Daniel 11. Rome, the third kingdom after Darius and the fourth king of Daniel 11, consumed the land of the Israelites which does not rise again until the end; Remember Alexander's kingdom "shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven; and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled: for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside those [four]." Daniel 11:4. The Romans must be referenced to complete the vision. This consummation began with the invasion of general Pompey.

"17 He shall also set his face to enter with the strength of his whole kingdom, and upright ones with him; thus shall he do: and he shall give him the daughter of women, corrupting her: but she shall not stand on his side, neither be for him." In 67 B.C. Pompey was granted a single force hitherto unheard of under one Roman general - 120,000 troops, 5,000 cavalry and 500 ships. He quickly subdued the pirates in the Mediterranean with this force. In return he was granted governorship of the eastern provinces of Cilicia, Bithynia and Pontus in Asia Minor (Turkey). Pompey was the first Roman general to be granted the power of making peace and war on his own initiative without reference to the senate and people of Rome. He started an expedition to the east for the purpose of securing Rome's claims to his new provinces and subduing any foreign threats to them. He conquered Mithridates and reduced Tigranes to dependence on Rome. In 65 B.C. he conquered Iberia and Albania. Pompey took the position that by subduing Tigranes the Seleucid claim of Antiochus XIII had been extinguished. This gave him an excuse to enter Syria. He annexed Syria in 64 B.C.

Then out of Judah the two rival Hasmonaean brothers came to Pompey to have him settle their dispute - the younger Aristobulus II having taken rule by force from his older brother, Hyrcanus II. These were descended from Mattathias through his son Simon. They are the upright ones because their ancestor called on the LORD and stood up to Antiochus IV. When Pompey began leaning in favor of Hyrcanus, Aristobulus withdrew to his fortresses. This gave Pompey an excuse to invade the Holy Land. When Pompey ordered Aristobulus to give up his garrisons after some parlays, Aristobulus withdrew to Jerusalem. Pompey pursued apparently bringing Hyrcanus with him. Aristobulus came out to meet Pompey, but the city did not want to honor his promises. Apparently, some supporters of Hyrcanus opened the gate to the northern-most wall in an attempt to win favor with Pompey, but the remaining northern wall was formidable. After besieging Jerusalem for three months, Pompey took it with considerable slaughter.[11]

The scriptures call Jerusalem the daughter of a woman [Ezekiel 23:2], but it had now been Hellenized and had become the daughter of several religions or women. Back at the time of Antiochus IV Jason even had a gymnasium built where the young priests of Jerusalem began to pursue the Greek ideal of an athletic, beautiful body. They tried to hide the fact of their circumcision. 1 Maccabees 1:14-15. They competed in the nude, and began to don Greek clothing. Seeing how the Greeks were "enslaving Israel," Judas Maccabeus chose two citizens to go to Rome, and seek an alliance to which the Roman senate responded favorably on two bronze tablets. 1 Maccabees 1:17-32. The LORD told Jerusalem it had taken lovers whom He would send against it. Ezekiel 23:22. Rome was the last lover.

Pompey entered the Holy of Holies in the Temple where no man was to enter but the High Priest on the Day of Atonement. He saw the golden table, the holy minora with seven candles, the pouring vessels and great quantities of spices. The next day he allowed the Temple to be cleansed and restored the high priesthood to Hyrcanus.[12] Thus, were the Temple and Jerusalem corrupted. Through his desecration of the Temple, Pompey earned the enmity of the Jews towards the Romans even though he did no looting. Of course Jerusalem was not for Pompey nor Rome, but in the Hellenistic way some showed favors in order to win the personal support of the Roman leaders. In the eyes of God, however, no ends justify any means other than righteous means.

"18 After this shall he turn his face to the isles, and shall take many: but a prince for his own behalf shall cause it to turn upon him." Jerusalem was Pompey's last eastern conquest. He knew he did not have authority from the Senate to pursue further conquests, such as the rich jewel of Egypt. So he began to consolidate his hold on his conquered lands as he slowly returned to Rome. He apparently set up his center of administration in Amisus in his province of Bythnia. From the Black Sea he sailed to Asia. In Miletoupolis an inscription hails him as "Saviour and Benefactor." Then he sailed to Mytilene on the island of Lespos where he freed them from threads of Mithridates' rule. Then he sailed to the island of Rhodes where he won their favor by making a donation of fifty talents towards rebuilding and a talent to each philosopher. Historians suspect he made other island stops owing to the protracted time of his travel. From Rhodes he may have visited Crete to pick up Panares and Lasthenes because they appear in his victory celebration in Rome in 61 B.C. The Roman proconsulate of Crete, Metellus, had captured them after they surrendered to Pompey in Cilicia. Pompey took credit for the conquest of the island kingdom of Crete. [13]]

After returning from the East to Rome, Pompey retired for awhile in Amisus in northern Asia Minor (Turkey) before being recalled.[14] "There is a striking contrast between the scene Pompey was leaving and the one to which he was returning. In the East he was monarch of all he surveyed, with a vast army at his back, dictating terms and distributing favours to cities, kings and princes within a brilliantly organized system of his own creation. At Rome he would find himself once more working within a constitution hedged around with checks and restrictions against the growth of individual dominance, where every word of his would be scrutinized, every move opposed; where there were numerous rivals for position even among men who had been his friends, and advice was offered before it was asked for."[15] In 57 B.C. Pompey was appointed to the newly created position of corn commissioner with power to raise a fleet and arms. He appointed assistant commissioners who worked in Africa, and the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, thus establishing a power base for himself on these islands as well. At about the same time and during his second consulship Rome annexed the island of Cyprus from Egypt. [16]

But a prince for his own behalf caused it to turn upon him. For awhile Caesar shared power in Rome with Pompey. But if Pompey was for the Republic, Caesar was not. With his small army of about 25,000 men Caesar had been conquering Gaul and the Teutonic tribes there. The Roman senate began to suspect Caesar's ultimate intentions and made Pompey sole consul. He entered office on February 25, 52 B.C. In 50 B.C. Caesar began consolidating his forces in Ravenna, Italy. Although Pompey brought two legions into Rome, he decided to retreat despite his boast that all he need do is stomp his feet and armies would rise up out of the earth.[17]

"19 Then he shall turn his face toward the fort of his own land: but he shall stumble and fall, and not be found." In 49 B.C. Pompey sailed out of Brundusium, Italy towards the base of his strength in the East while Caesar looked on. Caesar returned to Rome and the senate capitulated. He forcibly opened the treasury to find 3,500,000 pounds. Caesar then began to build a fleet. Pompey's legions in Spain capitulated. At Dyrrachium in Greece Pompey fortified himself. He called on all rulers in his eastern domains to raise troops. His father-in-law, Scipio, brought an army out of Syria. Caesar eventually came after him, but Pompey's superiority at sea began to starve out Caesar's troops forcing action. Caesar was decisively defeated in this first battle with his troops being pursued all the way to the camp. In a turn curious to historians Pompey stayed in his fortifications and did not press his advantage - letting Caesar escape with a majority of his army still intact. This forced Pompey to pursue Caesar into the open, where he had to try to manage all the competing leaders of his camp. At the battle of Pharsalia in 48 B.C. Caesar's flanks were suffering, but Caesar had put 2000 of his best troops in the center which were able to make a forward thrust movement. When Caesar's reserve line pressed in, Pompey, the seemingly invincible conqueror of Spain and the East, stumbled further - he lost his confidence and abandoned his army. He fled on one of his ships through Cyprus and to Egypt. There he was met at the shore by an army. One of the rival Ptolemies apparently wished to win favor with Rome. As Pompey disembarked to the shore he was struck down, beheaded, and his body left to the beasts.[18] Thus, his grave is not found, although there was a monument to him in Alexandria. Although like Alexander before him, historians have given Pompey the title of "the Great," both desecrated the Temple (tipping the Lord's scales of justice commonly known as earning the wrath of the Lord), and suffered ignominious deaths - Pompey more than Alexander. Caesar was then uncontested. With Caesar came the end of the Roman Republic. The senate became subject to the emperor.

"20 Then shall stand up in his estate a raiser of taxes in the glory of the kingdom: but within few days he shall be destroyed, neither in anger, nor in battle." Caesar was the prince for his own behalf. He is regarded as the first emperor of Rome, but as all historians know after he left his residence, the house of the Pontifex Maximus, and went to the senate to be crowned king, several senators raised up and stabbed him to death. Caesar's estate was that of a temporal emperor and a Pontifex Maximus claiming spiritual dominion over the people. Constantine "the Great" was of the same estate. He taxed and built for the glory of the kingdom of Rome perhaps like none other.

Constantine inherited Diocletian's huge army of 460,000 to 600,000 men - reportedly at least double, if not triple the size of the prior army. He used a new gold coin, the solidus, for quin-quennial donativa or five time per year bonus pay to each soldier. On top of this he added a large bureaucracy to administer his program of 'Public Utility' as placarded on his coinage. Although Eusebius extolled him for decreasing the land tax 25 percent, which at least temporarily benefitted rural land owners, he instituted significant new taxes he needed to maintain the existing structure while also building the grand new capitol of Constantinople within a ten year period. It is reported that in order to induce senators to move, he rebuilt their Roman homes in every detail. "No ruler, it was declared, had spent so liberally since the last year of Alexander the Great. Eusebius also emphasized Constantine's generous almsgiving to widows, orphans and beggars."[19]

There were three taxes Constantine either initiated or put into effective practice in addition to the existing ones. A poll tax, the caput, was added to Diocletian's iugum. The previously tax-exempt senators and perhaps some previously exempt state appointees, had the collatio glebalis or follis senatorius tax imposed upon them. But the big tax was the collatio lustralis or chrysargyron which was called the gold and silver tax because it had to be paid in these precious metals rather than the bronze coins used by most of the populace. The reason why becomes evident when we learn that the bronze follis was reduced from thirty-two coins per pound in 307 A.D. to seventy-two per pound in 313, and the bronze denarius was reduced from 60,000 per pound in 300 A.D. to 172,800 per pound in 324 A.D. As any economist can attest this high rate of money growth in the bronze coinage would produce a huge windfall or profit to the government at the cost of a delayed high inflation rate in the bronze currency. The brunt of this inflation was of course borne by the common people who had to use their inflated bronze currency to buy gold and silver to pay the tax, a loss hardly offset by a twenty-five percent reduction in the land tax. If nothing else the tone of the ancient historians including the Christian, Lactantius, and with the exception of Eusebius, shows that the people considered the taxes to be oppressive.[20] Some historians point to the fact that Constantine raided pagan temples for gold, but we also know that many of the new churches were richly adorned. "In a letter to the Bishop of Jerusalem Constantine made it clear that he desired all the churches built by himself to be greater in splendour and beauty than any secular buildings."[21] To complete the prophecy Constantine was destroyed neither in anger nor in battle - which were the usual fates of emperors. He died in 337 of an unknown ailment, perhaps leprosy, after a reign as sole emperor of about thirteen years - days being years.

"21 And in his estate shall stand up a vile person, to whom they shall not give the honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries." Constantine was the first emperor or king to call himself Christian. The vile person is a third king, whom the kings of the north and south come against "at the time of the end." Daniel 11:40. Either after an avowed christian western emperor disowned the title of Pontifex Maximus or after the western empire disintegrated the bishop of Rome took their title of the Pontifex Maximus and got the Eastern Emperor to give him a duchy to western lands in Italy; he eventually became the head of the Holy Roman Empire, thus, standing in Constantine's estate and honoring Constantine with Vatican murals. An illustration of the alleged transference of the tiara (crown) from Constantine to bishop Silvester can be found in the chapel of S. Silvestro in Quattro Coronati. "In the second half of the twelfth century magnificent mosaics depicting scenes from the history of the early church were cemented into the porticus of the Lateran basilica" including "three episodes from the legends of Sylvester. The third portrays Constantine in the act of presenting his donation to Sylvester. It is accompanied by the inscription, Rex in scriptura Sylvestro dat sua jura [Sylvester, King in Scripture..]... The pope is sitting on his throne, the emperor is standing, and they are jointly holding the Donation of Constantine."[22] The creed in Session 11 of the Council of Florence, 1442, calls Constantine "the great and most pious emperor Constantine."[23] Even St. Bernard who wrote De consideratione for the pontiff, Eugenius, could not restrain from commenting on the moral and spiritual problems of the Roman Church as he points in an oft-quoted passage: "They (the Romans) take part in all papal business. Who can you quote to me in the city who acknowledged your position as pope without a bribe or the hope of a bribe? 'The pope is decked in gold, mounted on a white horse, surrounded by troops and officers.' In this you have succeeded not to Peter but to Constantine. I advise you to tolerate this position for the time being, not to assert it as your right. The Romans are wolves rather than sheep."[24]

"She [the Church] did not recognize the sovereignty of th[e] Teutons as 'ordained by God.' Out of this simple fact grew up vast consequences. The Teuton king was a heathen or Arian usurper. He was not a king de jure, in the eyes of the clergy, till he was baptized into the Church, and then lawfully anointed king by the clergy. Thus the clergy gradually became the makers of kings."[25] "This hereditary sense of superiority on the part of the clergy may explain and excuse much of their seeming flattery. The most viscious kings are lauded, if only thy have been 'erga servos, Dei benevoli;' if they have founded monasteries; if they have respected the rights of the Church."[26]

The bishop of Rome flattered his way to the head of the churches and Constantine arranged for his murdered wife's dowry, the Lateran palace, to be provided to him. Remember the previous discussion on how his legate told a council it was a short step from being head of all the churches to being bishop of all the churches? Because he was the bishop of the empire's capitol where Peter and Paul both died he came to call himself prince of the apostles. Not even the Church claims that Peter or Paul ordained the bishop of Rome as an apostle. Rather, he flattered his way to being called an apostle, because he did not hold the office of apostle at all, but the office of bishop. It started with his claim of primacy over the other bishops. By these means he gained favor with the emperors. However, by being an apostle Jesus was the Prince of the Apostles, and he died in Jerusalem to rise and sit on His throne in accordance with His Father. Jesus is the Prince of the covenant. By this logic why wouldn't the bishop of Jerusalem have primacy? Yet, in the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215 the bishopric of Jerusalem was given the fifth and last level of primacy. The flatteries the bishop of Rome has used for centuries to win friends and influence are completely hollow.

"22 And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflown from before him, and shall be broken; yea, also the prince of the covenant." Such a flood symbolizes the workings of Satan in men - like the flood cast out of the serpent's mouth at the woman with twelve stars in Revelation 12. With its small army of Romanized converts the Roman Catholic Church eventually converted all the Arian Teutons. For a time in the sixth century eastern Greek or Byzantine orthodoxy merged with Roman orthodoxy. During the pontificate of Gregory I (590) the Lombards began to be converted from Arianism. The conversion process of Britain to Catholicism was begun by Augustine. By the end of the first millennium, virtually all of Europe was Catholic except for the Muslims, the Jews, and the eastern orthodox church during the periods in which it asserted independence, although by this time the eastern church had accepted a lot of the western doctrines, especially the trinity. Harald Bluetooth converted Denmark around 974 A.D.; Vladimir converted Russia to the eastern version around 988 A.D.; Boleslav the Brave converted Poland around 999 A.D.; Olaf Trygvesson converted Norway around 999-1000 A.D.; Although the trinity remained a mystery to them, in Iceland Thorgeir the Lawgiver made the decision to convert, and the people of Iceland converted to the Catholic Church as a political act in 1000 A.D.; Leif Ericksson discovered America around 1000 A.D., then converted Greenland.[27]

Pontiff Gregory I introduced a new mode of chanting in the church services. Although a liturgy had been adopted, Gregory molded it into a fixed, permanent form of repetitive readings, chants, and prayers. There was little or no room for the spirit of God to manifest itself through the spiritual growth of one another. The earliest Church writers make it clear, however, that the early Christian Church of the east had no fixed liturgy. Pliny (112 A.D.) gives a description of a church service which came under his scrutiny: "...they were in the habit of meeting before dawn on a stated day, and singing alternately a hymn to Christ as to a god, and that they bound themselves by an oath (sacramento) not to commit any wicked deed, but that they would abstain from theft, and robbery, and adultery; that they would not break their word; and that they would not hold a deposit when reclaimed. This done it was their practice, so they said, to separate, and then to meet together again for a meal...." There are no surviving books to evidence the existence of an early liturgy. The historical accounts of the Christian persecutions under Diocletian, do not mention any liturgical books, if they existed, as being burned. There is plenty of evidence, however, of a wide assortment of forms of worship in the bishops of the first three centuries after Jesus' ascension.[28]

All Christendom succumbed to the Roman pontiff, and the truth brought by the Prince of the covenant, Jesus, was smothered. The Church entered a period of complete apostasy. There was no word from heaven. The use of force became more and more prevalent. Anyone not sharing the views of the bishop of Rome was labeled a heretic and persecuted. The Prince of the covenant did not teach us to use such means to forward the gospel - on the contrary. Jesus rebuked his apostles for such thoughts.

"23 And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people." The bishop of Rome started as the head of a very small portion of the Church. Most of the church members were in the East, but they did not have the wealth and influence of the Roman capitols - nor the corruption. At first most of the Church councils were filled with eastern bishops who held significantly different views than the western church was trying to force on them. The first league of the bishop of Rome was the formula of Hormisdas the eastern emperor signed, and required the eastern church patriarch to accept. It became a requirement for all to pledge an oath of fidelity to the bishop of Rome. I am not aware of any requirement by the church of an oath or covenant with our Lord Jesus - the oath was to the Roman pontifex maximus.

The eastern emperor again moved away from the Roman Church, when it no longer appeared politically important to have connections with it - when he no longer desired to conquer the West. In 726 the emperor Leo issued an edict against image worship which provoked the ire of Rome and Italy. In 741 the pontiff Zacharias was the first to be elected without the customary consent of the exarch of the eastern empire, thus, marking a political disconnection with the eastern empire. The pontiff was now on his way to his independent political power. In 772 Hadrian/Adrian I sought the assistance of Charlemagne against the Lombards. After Charlemagne conquered the Lombards, and assumed the title of king of the Lombards, he gave a large amount of conquered territory to the pontiff. In 800 pontiff Leo III crowned Charlemagne as the Holy Roman Emperor, which marked the beginning of the true political power of the pontiff. This was the point at which later pontiffs such as Innocent III could point to show the Roman pontiff had authority over kings. He was no longer subject to the Greek emperor in Constantinople, but was the head of his own Holy Roman Empire. He sought the assistance of whatever European kings would follow his command, and would promise them the imperial crown. The custom was initiated that for a king to become the Roman emperor, he must go to Rome, and take an oath of obedience to the Roman pontiff whose feet he was to kiss.

In 858 pontiff Nicholas I marked the advent of the sole legislative power of the pontiff by adopting and declaring the "False Decretals" as authentic. Even an avowed Catholic priest, Grisar, professes that the legend of Silvester's baptism of Constantine is a fiction together with the subsequent recovery from leprosy. He asserts these legends started from the Constitutum Silvestri which made its way into the papal decretals, but avowed some impossible points. For instance the Constitutum states that in 325 Silvester presided over a council in the presence of Constantine while it is known that Constantine was not staying in Rome. It ridiculously asserts a requirement of 46 years service in the Church before one could join the priesthood. It did not appear in the earliest collections of canonical decrees such as that of Dionysius Exiguus, but first appeared in a later sixth century collection of canonical law. He concludes: "The latter legend, once started, took the fancy of the Romans, and, as it seemed to redound to the honour of the Roman Church, it could scarcely be omitted in speaking of Silvester; it thus came to be used first by the less educated, and then even in cultured and official circles."[29] Other historians claim things like the Romans just could not stomach the baptism of Constantine by Eusebius, "who was practically an Arian." All the ancient historians who recorded the event, including Eusebius, placed the baptism of Constantine squarely in the hand of Eusebius of Nicomedia, which occurred in 337 - two years after the death of Silvester. Yet, even today one can find the story of the baptism of Constantine by Silvester I repeated on the Egyptian obelisk in the Piazza di San Laterano (Lateran square).[30]

A century and one half of great disorder in the papacy began with Boniface VI (896), and was culminated in the pontificates of Benedict VIII and Benedict IX. Rival Roman families such as the Crescentii and the Tusculani, pitted their power through the papacy. The tellingly short papacies during this period reflect the premature deaths of a good number of the pontiffs. Fifteen of the pontificates (two anti-popes) were about one year or less. Boniface VI died within a few days of his election, and the Italian party elected Stephen VI, who disinterred the body of Formosus and mutilated it. In 897 he in turn was imprisoned and strangled. Romanus and Theodore II each held office for a few months. After a few months in office, Leo V (903) was imprisoned by his chaplain, Christopher, who in turn was elected. In 904 Christopher was driven from Rome by the soldiers of Berengar, and Sergius III was elected. History claims Theodora got her paramour, the archbishop of Ravenna, elected in 914 as John X. He raised Croatia to the rank of a kingdom by bestowing the royal crown to Duke Tomislav in 925. He was the first pontiff to lead his troops into battle. He defeated the Saracens (Muslims) in south Italy, and destroyed the fortress of Garigliano. After the longest pontificate of the period, fourteen years, John in turn was imprisoned in 928 by the party of Theodora's daughter, Marozia, and died an unknown death. His replacement, Leo VI (928), had a pontificate of a few months. In 931 the son of Marozia and Sergius III was elected as John XI. The next year his brother, Alberic, cast he and his mother, Marozia, into prison where he died in 936. The next four pontiffs were elected by the will of Alberic. The second, Stephen VIII, intervened in France on behalf of Louis IV in 942, by using the threat of excommunication to suppress a revolt by the nobility of France and Burgundy. At the death of the fourth, Agapetus II, the son of the deceased Alberic, Octavian, was elected as John XII (955) at age eighteen. In 961 John appealed to king Otto I of Germany for assistance against king Berengar of Italy by promising the imperial crown. Otto was crowned emperor in 962. At Pavia Otto learned that John had entered into correspondence with the deposed Italian king Aldabert. Otto sent investigators who returned with a long list of crimes charged against John by the Romans. On the approach of Otto, John fled, and Leo VIII was elected. But when Otto left, people of Rome rose up against Leo, and reinstated John (964) who was then apparently murdered.

In 972 Benedict VI was elected, but in 974 he was imprisoned by Bonifazio Francone at the instigation of the Tuscan party, who then became Boniface VII. After about a month Boniface fled Rome to Constantinople with the treasures of St. Peter. Benedict VII was then elected, and he immediately excommunicated Boniface, who was declared an anti-pope by the papacy. After the death of Otto in 983, Boniface reappeared in Rome, and in 984 imprisoned the newest pontiff, John XIV (983), who died imprisoned. The next year Boniface suddenly died. Then the new emperor, Otto III, became involved once again when Crescentius compelled John XV (985) to flee. When in 996 John died, Otto caused his kin, Gregory V, to be elected. Crescentius opposed Gregory as well, and once-pardoned by Gregory, caused an anti-pope, John XVI, to be seated as pontiff. In 998 Otto put Crescentius to death, but the next year Gregory died by suspicion of poison.

With the creation of the college of cardinals to elect the pontiffs at the beginning of the next millennium, the political stability of the papacy was greatly enhanced, and the papacy again began to grow in power. But at first we find the families of the Crescentii and Tusculans still warring through the papacy. In 1012 Benedict VIII was elected by the Tusculan party. The party of the Crescentii then elected an anti-pope, Gregory, and Benedict sought the protection of the emperor, Henry II. On the death of Benedict, his brother, Romanus, was seated in the papacy as John XIX through the influence of the Tusculan party, allegedly by bribery or threat of force. In 1029 John XIX raised the domain of Poland to the status of a kingdom by raising Boleslav I to royal rank. On the death of John in 1033, his nephew, Theophylact of Tusculum who was a boy of age twelve, was placed in pontifical robes by his father, and became Benedict IX. His father placed his brother, Gregory, at the head of civic government as Consul. In 1044 the populace rose against Benedict, and allegedly the gold of Girardo de Saxo bought the papal seat from the rebels. He took the name of Sylvester III, but after forty-nine days, the gold of Benedict whose party held out in the fortress of St. Angelo, apparently bought the papacy back in 1045. However, Benedict was still apparently hated by a majority of the Romans, so he took an unusually open step. "The Abbot Bartholomew of Grotta Ferrata urged him to the step, but he unblushingly sold the Papacy for money like a piece of merchandise. In exchange for a considerable income, that is to say, for the revenue of Peter's Pence from England, he made over his papal dignities by a formal contract to John Gratianus, a pious and rich archpriest of the church of S. John at the Latin Gate, on May 1, 1045," who took the name of Gregory VI. Incidentally, he was also of the house of Tusculum. This scandal caused the emperor, Henry III, to assemble an unrecognized Council of Sutri, which in 1046 deposed Benedict, Sylvester, and Gregory in favor of Clement II. The Council reserved in the emperor the right to nominate the pontiffs - a step unpopular with Rome. Clement summoned a council to condemn the vice of simony, but died on October 9, 1047. The wresting Benedict IX immediately forced himself back onto the papal throne where he sat for another eight months until the emperor appointed a new pontiff at which Benedict took flight. Even a later pontiff, Victor III (1086) in dictum proclaimed the aforementioned period of the papacy to be venal ("non parva a patre in populum profligata pecunia, summum sibi sacerdotium vendicavit"). He charged Benedict IX robbed and murdered in Rome.[31

"24 He shall enter peaceably even upon the fattest places of the province; and he shall do that which his fathers have not done, nor his fathers' fathers; he shall scatter among them the prey, and spoil, and riches: yea, and he shall forecast his devises against the strong holds, even for a time." The Roman pontiff was treated like royalty when he entered Constantinople for the first time (c.526), which had more wealth at the time than any place in the western part of the old Empire. It was the fattest part of the Empire. Bishop John was enthroned in a solemn assembly in order to ordain Justin, which was apparently the pontiff's first crowning of a Catholic emperor.

With the spread of Catholicism, the pontiff was ready to start the spread of his political power in the beginning of the second millennium. At first this process was peaceful. A long history of enfeoffing leaders was begun with the Normans of south Italy. Leaders placed their lands under the protection of the Roman pontiff in exchange for their military assistance and a yearly tribute to the pontiff. In 1059 two Normans swore such fealty to pontiff Nicholas II. Robert Guiscard was vested with duchies in Apulia, Calabria, and Sicily, and Robert of Aversa with the principality of Capua. In this way the Roman pontiff gained more feudal vassals in the Middle Ages than any other king using only the stroke of his pen.[32 Hungary was raised to the level of its nationhood when Duke Vajk asked pontiff Silvester II for the royal crown. In 1001 the request was granted, and Hungary became a recognized power. However, in 1074 the Hungarian king, Geza I, recognized pontiff Gregory VII as his feudal suzerain to fend off German overlordship.[33]

The bishop of Rome had several devices he used to assert power without resorting to arms - anathema, excommunication, interdict, bans, bulls and others. At first these devices were used to punish religious offences such as murder, adultery or stealing. As he gained temporal preeminence, however, he began to use these devices against kings who refused to support his candidates for ecclesiastical offices or other political or papal causes. He used these devices to force the strong holds to succumb, and was able to topple dynasties far away by the stroke of his pen. "Papal policy was always guided by the usefulness of a candidate for office. An incompetent king is useless in the furtherance of papal policies and, therefore, should be replaced by someone who is able to promote the papal program."[34] In fourteenth century France towns had up to a few hundred excommunicated persons. People were excommunicated for failure to pay tithes, and petty offences such as eavesdropping.[35] In 1526-31 monks in Troyes even excommunicated ravenous caterpillars which were eating the crops, but only on tithe-paying lands.[36]

I will not fill pages with examples but will discuss a few - others are in this book. The 27 propositions of the Dictatus Papae of Gregory VII have already been discussed. In them he claimed the pontiff has the right to depose emperors, and the power to absolve subjects of unjust rulers from their oaths of allegiance to the rulers. Yet, he claimed the pontiff can be judged by no man. Henry IV of Germany resisted the dictates, because he felt he would not be able to rule if the half of the land in ecclesiastical hands in Germany were brought directly under papal control through pontifical power to elect and depose bishops. Gregory's response was immediate. At the synod of 1076 he declared: "I withdraw the government of the whole kingdom of the Germans and of Italy from Henry the king, son of Henry the emperor." He placed Henry and all his supporters under a papal ban of excommunication. All the subjects of Henry were released from their oaths of allegiance to Henry. Thus, with the stroke of his pen, the pontiff dethroned the most powerful monarch in the West for a political rather than moral offence. Finding himself unable to govern, Henry crossed the Alps to the castle of Canossa, where the pontiff was in a winter retreat. After three days of waiting in the snow, Gregory granted Henry the absolution he sought. He was admitted to kiss the papal feet, but Henry was not placed back on the throne. Therefore, a faction of German princes elected Rudolph of Swabia as king, and the power struggle renewed.[37]

One of the strongholds against Catholicism was England. The Anglo-Saxons were converted to Catholicism from their pagan religion, but they were politically distant from the papacy. However, the papal power was extended even here. Innocent II (1130) ratified the election of king Stephen of England. In 1151 an issue arose with Rome when an appointment for the see of York came up. Pontiff Eugenius III refused the bishops to consecrate Eustace, Stephen's son, and instead the throne passed to Henry II in 1154. In 1156 Henry asked the pontiff for permission to invade Ireland, which was granted in the bull Laudabiliter, which bestowed the overlordship of Ireland on Henry. Innocent III (1198) and king John of England disputed over an appointment to the see of Canterbury. First the pontiff excommunicated John, and placed all of England under the interdict which basically meant all Church services stopped. When John and England did not bend to his will, Innocent III next formally deposed king John in 1213, and commissioned Philip II of France as Philip Augustus to execute the sentence. This forced John into submission, and he surrendered his crown to the papal legate. "As the king stated in his official letter: 'We offer and freely yield ... to our lord Pope Innocent III and his Catholic successors, the whole Kingdom of England and the whole Kingdom of Ireland.'" John was now reinstated as a vassal to the pontiff upon making an oath to the pontiff and paying a yearly tribute of 1000 marks sterling. John promised to "'bind in perpetuity our successors and legitimate heirs that without question they must render fealty ... to the Supreme Pontiff.'" For this and because he wanted France free to crusade, the next pontiff, Honorius III (1216), forced France to abandon its planned invasion of England under threat of excommunication of the French king. In 1223 pontiff Honorius allowed Henry III of England, a minor, to mount the throne of England by declaring him of age. Around this time Bulgaria, Aragon, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, and Sicily all accepted the pontiff as their feudal suzerain.[38]

One of the ways in which the Roman pontiff won a following was to spread the riches. In the early Middle Ages the pontiff continued the emperors' policy of doling out corn every year to the public. In 593 pontiff Gregory sent his consiliarius, Theodore, a Sicilian slaveboy as a reward for his loyal service. Although Theodore was a lawyer, he apparently was not rich, and up till this point had no servants. He was, however, the only layman known to have influence in Gregory's circle.[39] It became a custom for each new pontiff to throw money to the public during his confirmation while at the same time proclaiming he had no gold nor silver. The reader will recall that Innocent III was forced to put down a revolt as a result of his initial refusal to do this. But more importantly the pontiff used this same policy with persons in positions of power. At the 1133 coronation of Lothair II by Innocent II, Innocent gave Lothair the allodial possessions of the countess Matilda as a fief. According to the Gesta Innocent gave the patriarch of the Bulgars a large ring with topazes in it.[40] The coronation of Innocent III included a lavish banquet. All the scholae of the pontiff, churches, convents, judges, scribes, prefect, and senators received a present. All the triumphal arches cost thirty-five pounds. Jews received twenty solidi. At Advent and Easter all the senators received a malechino. At every festival to which the pontiff wore his crown, the highest ranking guests received a cask of wine, a cask of claret, and a dinner of forty covers. [41] In the 1550's the so-called "statue of Pompey," a nude and noble captain making an oration, was discovered in the Via dei Leutari. Pontiff Julius III purchased the statue, which had been supposed was the statue in the curia of Pompey's Theater (Curia Pompeia) in front of which Caesar was murdered. He made arrangements for the statue to be gifted to the home of cardinal Capodiferro, the Palazzo Spada.[42] In the sixteenth century the Church gave king Henry of France, a married man with children by mistresses, 3,000,000 golden crowns in turn for his cancellation of his father's decree which had restricted the powers of ecclesiastical courts.[43] We shall also see how the pontiff gave kings money to wage war.

"25 And he shall stir up his power and his courage against the king of the south with a great army; and the king of the south shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand: for they shall forecast devises against him." Now by the time of the early Middle Ages, the kingdom of the south, Egypt, had been conquered by the Fatamid Muslims, which the Europeans called Saracens. They were Shi'ite Muslims, which means they traced their leadership back to Mohammed genealogically. The Muslims began a campaign to conquer Egypt in 639 A.D. They defeated the Byzantines (who called themselves Romans) under Augustalis Theodorus in the battle of Heliopolis in July 640 with no more than 9000 men. Constantinople was not in a fighting mood so Cyrus concluded a treaty with the Amir without the knowledge of the Alexandrians under which Alexandria, the capitol of Egypt, was to be evacuated no later than September 17, 642.[44]

Historians have always assumed this verse refers to a battle occurring in Egypt, but this verse does not necessarily imply that at all. The two fought someplace. In 1095 the eastern emperor was feeling great pressure from the Seljuk Turk Muslims who were conquering Asia Minor. In the Council of Piacenza of March 1095 the Byzantine Empire appealed to the West for help. The bishop of Rome, Urban II, began touring France in July 1095. He arranged the Council of Clermont in November 1095 where he gave a fiery speech to deliver the holy land from the Muslims whom were called the Infidel. But the first wave of crusaders were a rowdy, disorganized mob, more than a military force. They began their escapade by initiating persecution against Jews in what has been called "The First Holocaust." Their number has been estimated at up to 273,000. They divided into three armies, apparently numerous enough to cause problems in supporting themselves from the land in their travels. The Hungarians got disgruntled with them and sent soldiers to fend them off in battle. Most of these crusaders died in battling fellow Europeans, disease, and famine. What was left under Peter the Hermit was cut to pieces by the Turks in Asia Minor.

The second wave was just as numerous, but better organized and prepared. They too divided into two or three armies. These crusaders included many experienced soldiers. They fought their way through Asia Minor, but their goal was not to defend the eastern emperor's domain - their goal was to deliver Jerusalem from the "infidel." Now, Jerusalem had just been recaptured from the Seljuk Turks by the Fatamid Muslims in 1098, and therefore, was part of the Egyptian "kingdom of the south." When the crusaders arrived in 1099 only the most experienced and hardened remained - estimated at 50,000 out of the original 250,000. The Fatamid occupants of Jerusalem numbered from 50,000 to 70,000. The crusaders built devices to cast against the walls of Jerusalem. These were towers on wheels with draw bridges to lower onto the city walls. Bales of hay which had been set as inner walls were ignited by the crusaders when the wind was favorable. The people of Jerusalem could not stand the onrush of the crusaders. On July 15, 1099 the crusaders entered the city, and began their work of slaughtering all the inhabitants who did not escape. Nor were the Jews shown mercy - the crusaders mercilessly burned the synagogue while the Jews prayed inside. Almost no one was spared - not even women nor children. These men fancied themselves singing a new song unto the Lord. The Greek priests were set aside in favor of the Latin priests. Arnold was given the pastorate of the church of Jerusalem. Later, the Archbishop of Pisa, Daimbert, got himself commissioned by the Roman See to be appointed Patriarch of Jerusalem in place of Arnold. Godfrey, the new king of Jerusalem, yielded to Daimbert's demands that as Christ's vicar he should reign with Godfrey and have absolute sovereignty over Jaffa and the environs of the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem. Thus, the conquerors, Godfrey, Bohemond, and Baldwin, were made vassals of Rome, and received permission from the papal legate to rule.

The escaped of Jerusalem caused a stir in the feuding Muslims. The Turk of Syria went to augment the Egyptian army which was gathering in Gaza in southwest Palestine. When word reached Jerusalem Godfrey called the knights to arms. On August 11, 1099 on the plain between Jaffa and Ascalon the crusaders marched by a large drove of camels and cattle, which they had first mistaken for the enemy. Just beyond marched the combined armies of the Muslims consisting of Mussulmen, Turks, Moors, and Egyptians. Then the herd of beasts wheeled and followed the crusaders, multiplying their numbers in the eyes of Muslims from about twenty thousand foot and horse to a vast horde. Panic set in, and the crusaders attacked with their usual abandon as if to reinforce the fame of the terror of their arms. The raw recruits of the Muslims, although greatly superior in numbers, were no match for the tried veteran crusaders. The portion that could retreat to its fleet departed leaving the remainder of the multitudinous army to die at the hands of the crusaders. After a quarrel over a proposed siege of Ascalon the crusaders returned to Jerusalem with great booty. This was in addition to the booty from the fall of Jerusalem which included the riches of the mosque of Omar - six chariot loads with twenty gold and one hundred twenty silver candelabra. An Arab source claims there were about seventy candelabra, plus one weighing forty Syrian pounds of silver. The clergy received a good portion of this wealth. Most of the crusaders then traveled back to Europe with tales of victory and honor, but leaving Jerusalem and the newly conquered lands denuded of people since most of the prior inhabitants were slaughtered or driven out.

This prompted men to again market their goods, lands, and castles in order to raise money. A third wave of an estimated 200 to 300 thousand men, women, young girls, and monks formed into three armies. The first departed in 1100 A.D., and took the city of Ancyra, which was the only aspect of this escapade which may be termed a success. When it met the Turkish army, it could not resist the Turkish attack. The slaughter was enormous. Only a few thousand men could be gathered for a continued march under the duke of Burgundy and Raymond of Toulouse. The second column led by the Counts of Nevers and Bourges suffered a similar fate. The third column under the Count of Poictiers, the duke of Bavaria, and Hugh of Vermandois only escaped with about one thousand crusaders. Out of all three groups only about ten thousand men pressed on to a battle at Ramla, and further depleted numbers reached Jerusalem. "Measured by its cost in human life, and by its loss off earning power to Europe, history hardly records a greater calamity than the first Crusade."[45] I will not detail the battles and sieges of the settlers.

"26 Yea, they that feed of the portion of his meat shall destroy him, and his army shall overflow: and many shall fall down slain." Again, scholars who have interpreted these verses as referring to the two main Egyptian raids of Antiochus IV cannot establish this verse, because Antiochus was not destroyed after his first campaign - neither was the king of Egypt. Both lived to see the second campaign of Antiochus against Egypt. Antiochus did not die at the hands of his associates, but finally died at the hands of foreigners while raiding a foreign temple to collect tribute to pay the Romans, unless one wishes to believe the version in 1 Maccabees 6:1-16 that, repentant, he lay sick and died in the place of his abode after crowning one Philip or the version in 2 Maccabees 9:1-12 that while riding his chariot to Jerusalem in vengeance God smote him with sharp internal pains and worms after a temple raid in Persia.

This verse refers to a Roman revolt during the life of Arnold of Brescia. The Romans themselves had grown somewhat weary of the papal meat, and the factions in which bishops fought for Rome on one hand and Germany on the other. They wanted some representation in their government. Arnold's criticism got him condemned in the Lateran Council of 1139. Innocent II banished him from Italy. Arnold did not alone stir up the discontent necessary for a revolt. At the same time clergy within the Church were stirred with discontent against the secular emphasis emergent in the papacy. S. Bernard wrote his De Consideratione in which he criticized the worldly matters with which those who were supposed to be serving the Lord occupied themselves, saying they ought to wield the gardener's spade rather than the royal scepter. Arnold apparently made a protracted stay with a fellow student from France, cardinal Guido, and a letter from the papacy warning Guido attests to the fact. Arnold's whereabouts are then unknown until the last half of the next decade. Innocent died on September 24, 1143, and just two days later cardinal Guido ascended the papal chair as Celestine II; the quick succession obviously due to the revolution raging in Rome. The record that he died at the Palladium on March 8, 1144, indicates he probably was forced to seek the protection of the Frangipani from the Roman citizens. The next pontiff, Lucius II, tried to form an alliance with Roger of Sicily and the Roman nobles. The nobles formed what came to be known as the Guelf party, which was opposed to the populace of Rome because overthrow of the ecclesiastical state meant the reversion of their fiefs to the commune. The nobles were allowed to take control of the Circus Maximus which was included in their Palatine fortress. They also gained the Colosseum, the Septizonium, the arches of Titus and the other towers of the city. The populace appointed a Patricius, Jordan Pierleone, as the head of their republic, and wrote a civic constitution in 1144. They asked the pontiff to surrender his sovereign rights to the Patricius, and to live on a pension or tithes. Lucius II turned to the Holy Roman Emperor, Conrad III, who courteously greeted the papal envoys, but abandoned Rome and Italy to their fate. In apparent desperation the pontiff attacked the Capitol, but Pierleone and the senators defended it bravely. The pontiff reportedly fell bleeding on the Clivus Capitolinus as a result of a blow from a stone. His death a few days later on February 15, 1145, was therefore at the hands of his fellow citizens of Rome. The destruction of a pontiff, however, has never meant the destruction of the Church.

The next pontiff, Eugenius III, was the monk Bernard and the student of the Bernard who wrote De Consideratione. He fled Rome on February 17, just two days after his election. The Roman populace sacked and destroyed the palaces and towers of the papal party, the Guelfs. Eugenius was able to unite several vassals of the Church, and sent them to assist the papal party in the war against the burgher populace. With the reinforcement of the Guelfs, the Roman populace had enough, and sought a treaty in which the pontiff acknowledged the existence of the commune senate under his investiture. This being executed in December 1145, the pontiff returned to his Lateran palace. Thus, the pontiff was both destroyed by his subjects, and defeated them. But this was not the end. The pontiff again was forced to seek protection a month later. In March 1147, he went to France where King Louis VII was preparing for the second Crusade. Left to themselves the Roman nobility attacked many patrimonies of the Church, and seized what they could in order to indemnify themselves for their support of the pontiff. Rome remained in violent revolution. It was at this time that Arnold of Brescia reappeared in Rome to do penance. With the flight of the pontiff, however, he returned to his goal of depriving the pontiff of civil power, and thereby returning to a Christian society with the democratic conditions of the early unpolitical Church. This man with his monastic habit and body emaciated by fasting quickly won many friends through his respect for pure morals and poverty. He proclaimed neither reverence nor obedience were due the pontiff, because he was not a shepherd of souls, but a murderer, a tyrant over churches, and a corrupter of innocence. While in his exile Eugenius III wrote to his "exalted and illustrious people" with flattering words such as "Your fathers rendered the universe subject to the city," and "Illustrious city of heroes." Ironically elsewhere he wrote of his exalted people: "Their speech is arrogant but their actions are mean. They promise everything and perform nothing. They are at the same time honeyed flatterers and bitter slanderers, in short, worthless traitors."[46]

The next pontiff, Hadrian IV called for the expulsion of Arnold, but he was well protected by the senate, and idolized by the populace. After a cardinal was stabbed Hadrian/Adrian imposed the interdict on Rome which suspended all religious ceremonies except burials in unconsecrated ground, baptism, communion to the dying, and marriages outside churches. At first the Romans bore the interdict with defiant contempt, but as time passed it had a dramatic effect on the people. Hadrian would only remove the interdict on the condition of Arnold's banishment, so Arnold fled trying to get beyond the papal states and the reach of the pontiff. At that time Frederick I was in Tuscany preparing to war against the Normans. Hadrian decided to ask Frederick to obtain the surrender of Arnold. The young emperor probably knew nothing of the circumstances into which he was delving. Desiring to show goodwill to the pontiff, he had his troops compel the surrender of Arnold, who was given to the papal legates to be judged in Rome. Frederick apparently decided to seek his coronation as Holy Roman Emperor at this time. Hadrian went to meet Frederick. It was a custom for a rising emperor to play the part of the groom of the Church by meeting the pontiff on his horse, and holding his stirrup. However, when Hadrian first rode to meet him, Frederick tried to avoid this humiliating pretense by waiting for the pontiff to dismount before approaching him and kneeling. Then the offended pontiff refused Frederick the kiss of peace. Frederick dutifully submitted the next day. Nor did Frederick care for the greeting Rome gave him picturing him submitting to Roman law by standing at the gate of Rome to swear allegiance to the Roman pontiff. In the eyes of Frederick Rome was not an independent republic. So with 1000 hand-picked calvary Frederick rode into the Leonine city - not Rome proper. The coronation was performed in S. Peter's. During the coronation banquet, the senatorial Romans attacked Frederick's imperial camp, and any single persons encountered were cut down. Perhaps the Romans were just intending to rescue Arnold. A battle ensued. Frederick's reserves under Henry IV entered the Leonina, and attacked the Romans from the rear. The battle lasted till night. Having lost about one thousand men and more wounded, the citizens were overcome by superior numbers, and retreated back into Rome proper. Emperor Frederick departed without entering Rome in 1155. Arnold was apparently hanged and burned by Frederick soon thereafter.[47] The emperor thus acted as the papal puppet. In the early Middle Ages the Church rarely did its own killing. The condemned were always handed over to the civic authorities to be executed.

"27 And both these kings' hearts shall be to do mischief, and they shall speak lies at one table; but it shall not prosper: for yet the end shall be at the time appointed." In his eastern wars the Roman pontiff was represented by papal legates or prelates, who in effect made decisions for the pontiff. The legate, particularly, bore the authority of the holy see, and his decisions were binding upon the pontiff. Since the pontiff was also insistent on investing the local civic authorities with their civil powers, the kings and barons of the Latin states in Palestine also acted as the agents of the Roman pontiff.

The history of the Latin states in Palestine is one filled with battles and skirmishes between the Catholic settlers and the Muslim neighbors. These were augmented by the major eastern crusades which took place over a century and a half. Most of the eastern crusades, however, were called in response to major Muslim incursions. This was the case with the second crusade, which was called after the Turks of Asia Minor attacked Edessa. The county of Edessa lay on the fringe of Asia Minor and Syria on the northern end of the Latin states. A minor crusade was called after Aleppo fell in 1128. However, on December 24, 1144, Edessa fell to Zangi. On December 1, 1145, Eugenius II issued a letter, Quantum praedecessores, proclaiming the second crusade, and his prior teacher, Bernard of Clairvaux, preached the Crusade. In response king Louis VII of France took the cross at the head of one hundred thousand crusaders. The holy Roman emperor, Conrad III, started with a German army so large Otho said the fields were not spacious enough to contain its battalions. Nine-tenths of Conrad's great army, including civilian women and children, perished under the arms of the Turks in Asia Minor. Louis' army routed the Turks, killing many, in their first battle, but the army was split due to Queen Eleanor's desire to descend a mountain height into an inviting valley. The Turks took the heights, and surprised the rear of the army which was virtually annihilated. Louis landed at the port of Antioch having lost about 75,000 men. The thought of recapturing Edessa seemed to disappear. Louis was invited to Jerusalem where it was proposed that the crusaders could help to extend the northern borders of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. So bearing the alleged "true cross" which had been found in Jerusalem, Louis and Conrad combined their armies to attack Damascus in Syria. They were again badly defeated. They left for Europe in 1148.[48]

In 1163 Almaric/Amaury became king of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. He determined to crush the Egyptians. He pursued a conquest to the banks of the Nile, and forced the caliph to terms of peace. Almaric organized four more expeditions into Egypt which I detail only partially. His expeditions seemed to release an internal struggle between generals in Egypt, and one Chaver, was forced to flee to Damascus where he promised tribute to the Sunni, Nur al-Din, to send an army to Egypt. This marked the downfall of the Shi'ite Fatimid Caliphate of Egypt. An army was sent under Chirkon, and the Egyptian, Dargan, asked king Almaric for help. After victory over Dargan, Chirkon refused to retire his troops and then besieged Chaver. However, Chirkon retired to Bibeis on the approach of the Catholic army. Chaver then promised Almaric the tribute he had promised to Nur al-Din, and Almaric accepted. After a siege of three months terms were made, and Chirkon left enriched. Chirkon returned preaching an holy war against the Egyptian Empire of the Shi'ite Fatimids. Apparently hearing Chirkon's plans, Chaver again asked Almaric for aid, which prompted the king to call a council at Naplouse. Another Catholic army was sent from Gaza to contend with the troops of Nur al-Din. The combined forces defeated Chirkon in their first battle, but Chirkon reanimated his troops to inflict a sufficient defeat to press on to Alexandria where more loot was gathered. Chirkon then left again. Fearing Almaric, Chaver then entered a truce with him paying a heavy tribute, and loading Almaric with presents. With eyes full of the riches of Egypt Almaric returned, and married the daughter of Manuel, the Emperor of Constantinople. He then asked his new father-in-law, Manuel, to share in the riches of an Egyptian conquest. In Jerusalem rumor spread that Chaver had violated his treaties and was conspiring with Nur al-Din. In fact the Catholics played into the hands of Nur al-Din by being the first to break their solemn treaty with Egypt, which Almaric had obviously not intended to honor, thus, making it a lie. Almaric proceeded to Belbeis, Egypt which was pillaged and burned. Chaver gathered his forces and countered. In order to stave off Almaric, Chaver offered the King of Jerusalem two million crowns of gold to suspend operations, while he secretly sent for the help of Nur al-Din. "King Amaury saw, at too late an hour, that he was deceived by those he had attempted to deceive. Not being able to withstand the combined armies of Syria and Egypt, he beat a hasty retreat and was pursued...." The year was 1169, and the lies spoken at one table backfired on both parties. Chaver soon lost his head. The Fatimid Caliph awarded the generalship to Chirkon, but now the Sunni Muslims took control of Egypt, and deposed the Caliph - ending the Fatimid dynasty.

Nur al-Din now controlled an empire from Mesopotamia to Egypt and Syria. He fixed his sights on the Catholic kingdoms in Palestine, but time was not on his side. Chirkon died, and his nephew, Saladin, was chosen to succeed him. Then Nur al-Din soon died, and in the subsequent strife, the Mussulmen turned to Saladin. It was at this time that the last of king Almaric's expeditions to Egypt failed. In 1174 king Almaric died having exhausted much of the resources of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. His successor and son, Baldwin IV, was a minor, and Raymond gained the regency. Raymond continued Almaric's fortuneless policy, and through a combination of misfortunes nearly lost his army in an attack of Alexandria which was aided by a Sicilian fleet. Then the emirs of Emessa asked for his aid against Saladin. Saladin was now Sultan of Cairo and Damascus. To assure his success in Syria, Saladin sent rich presents to Raymond, and secured a truce. Raymond then promptly broke the treaty by raiding Damascus. About this time Baldwin IV reached majority, and assumed the lead of the army. Saladin countered with a formidable army before which the Catholics assumed a scorched earth policy. Baldwin took cover in Ascalon from whence his army sallied forth with such vigor that Saladin was left to retreat with only a remnant of his body-guard. Not to be discouraged Saladin returned more cautiously with a fresh army. Not being able to gain an advantage over Saladin, Baldwin sued for peace. Now Renaud/Reynald and his Knights Templar thought little of peace treaties with Muslims. Therefore, the Catholics were again the first to break a treaty. The Templars made fresh attacks against the Muslim caravans traveling to Mecca. Unarmed men were massacred, and women and children captured. Saladin complained to Baldwin concerning the treaty infractions, but to no avail. Saladin then kept fifteen hundred shipwrecked pilgrims. Neither Saladin, Baldwin, nor the fate of the Catholic pilgrims changed the course of the Templars. Therefore, Saladin again attacked. After Saladin was deflected, Renaud barely escaped destruction in an ill-conceived attack on Medina. At this Saladin seemed to become more determined, destroying several cities before retreating to Mesopotamia under the cover of a new truce. [49]

Now thirty years had passed since the second crusade, and seven papal crusade proclamations had elicited little response. But by 1187 Saladin had determined that he had gained enough strength to deal a final blow on the Kingdom of Jerusalem. At the Battle of Hattin on July 4, 1187 Saladin utterly defeated the Catholic army, and on October 2, 1187 he took Jerusalem. Saladin had been determined to revenge the deaths of the Muslims at the hands of Godfrey and his fellow crusaders, but the Catholic general, Baleau, said if Saladin did not allow an honorable surrender, the defenders would destroy the Mosque of Omar and the stone of Jacob revered by the Muslims. This and most of the wealth of the citizens purchased their freedom, but the Catholic Patriarch passed out of the city bearing the sacred vases, ornaments of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and the Church treasures. Out of the remaining money raised for the defense of the city, Baleau was able to purchase the freedom of most of the indigent, while even Saladin's brother, Malec-Adel, purchased the liberty of two thousand more. Later that same month, Gregory VIII proclaimed the third Crusade in his October 29, 1187 letter, Audita tremendi. The Saladin tithe was imposed. Saladin quickly reduced the Latin states to three principalities tightly hugging the coast: Tyre, Tripoli, and Antioch. Saladin was master of a large empire. Richard and Henry II of England, Phillip II of France, and Emperor Frederick I "took the cross" within six months.[50]

On August 27, 1189 king Guy of Jerusalem opened the siege of the important port city of Acre/Ptolemais which the crusaders captured in 1191. Germany had already lost Frederick I and a majority of its army. Phillip II of France left his army due to the interference of Richard, and returned to Europe. The remaining combined army under Richard won some cities in southern Palestine, but internal strife over the glory of a proposed conquest of Jerusalem, and growing suspicions about Richard which began with Conrad's death tolled the end of this Crusade. The Duke of Burgundy retired with his French soldiers to Acre. The Duke of Austria and his German soldiers likewise quitted Palestine. This crusade only succeeded in conquering a narrow strip of coastal Palestine from Acre to Antioch as an isolated Catholic outpost in a sea of Muslim territory. With a reduced army Richard entered negotiations with Saladin. Among his tactics he spread a rumor that the pontiff was about to arrive at the head of an army of two hundred thousand men. On September 2, 1192, Saladin agreed to a treaty in which the Catholics would be allowed to hold the cities then occupied on the coast, and Jerusalem would be open to pilgrimages and devotion. The next year Saladin died. This treaty too would be broken by a German army under a papal prelate not more than five years after the truce. Although this army stayed about one year in capturing a number of cities, the Roman pontiff implored them to stay longer.[51]

"28 Then shall he return into his land with great riches; and his heart shall be against the holy covenant; and he shall do exploits, and return to his own land." "The clergy, who had derived inordinate riches from the first crusade, contributed liberally to the second. Many of the lords and barons sold or mortgaged their castles and estates...."[52] If anyone was enriched from the Catholic states of Palestine, it was only the Catholic Church. At the time of Saladin's siege the clergy were able to depart Jerusalem with the riches of the Church. The city had about one hundred thousand occupants. Most of these departed for Europe. With the failure of the third crusade, more departed.

The people of Europe were already gaining a certain reluctance to undertake crusades. It seemed to them God was against their designs. Yet with the departure of the Germans from Palestine, the Fourth Crusade was proclaimed in August 1198. In December 1198 the first direct taxation of the Church for the crusades was implemented. As crusaders were getting organized, a young prince of Constantinople came to Philip of Swabia for aid. Young Alexius IV was the victim of his father's brother, who had dethroned his father. Although Greek sources claim the Roman pontiff agreed to help Alexius, there is no tangible evidence for this claim. It appears young Alexius traveled Europe, and implored the aid of the crusaders. The Venetians, who agreed to provide the ships for the crusade, also apparently liked the prospects of Greek conquests, which would expand their profitable shipping trade. So rather than go to the holy land, the majority of the crusaders went to capture Zara which quickly capitulated in November 1202. The Roman pontiff was displeased. Warned by the papal legate, on June 20, 1203 Innocent III wrote to Boniface of Montferrat and Baldwin of Flanders, absolutely forbidding them to continue on to Constantinople under threat of excommunication, "'but rather give up these sorry undertakings and pretended necessities, and go on to the rescue of the Holy Land; avenge the [Moslem] insult to the Cross; take from your enemies the spoils you needs must seize from your own brethren, as it were, if you thus stay in the lands of Romania [the Roman name for the Greek remnant of the Roman Empire].'" Innocent went on to say while the crusaders could continue to the holy land on board Venetian vessels even though the Venetian doge and his subjects were excommunicate, they were not to fight in the company of the Venetians lest they be defeated.[53] The crusade leaders were granted absolution on the grounds that they not again attack a Christian people.[54] The crusaders continued with their plans, however, and attacked Constantinople on July 17, 1203.

In what was the most audacious exploit of all the crusades, the orthodox city of Constantinople was captured by Roman Catholics who entered the city and sacked it for three days in April 1204. Constantinople was the wealthiest city in Europe at the time. The crusaders burnt part of the city, undoubtedly destroying much of the wealth they were trying to plunder. Even so historians tell us that the plunder was greater than the annual combined income of the West. Western writers recording the event, however, pass over the details of the sack. To soften the anger of the pontiff the newly elected emperor of the new Latin states of Greece, Baldwin of Flanders, wrote him of the value of their great exploits. In his letter Baldwin "ever Augustus" said no sooner had they placed Alexius on the throne, one Murzuphlus strangled Alexius, and attacked. He said the crusaders retaliated and assaulted the city "'for the honour of the Holy Roman Church and for the advantage of the Holy Land.'" He denounced the Greeks for their abuse and hostility toward the Latins and the See of Rome, and for refusing to make images of our Lord. He assured the pontiff that they had been the Lord's instrument in punishing the Greeks, and the Lord had given a glorious land. He then pleaded the pontiff to partake of the great work by sending people to defend and colonize the new possession including priests and monks to convert the Greeks. He concluded "'Now, Holy Father, now is the acceptable time, now is the day of salvation.'"[55] Innocent III replied "'to the illustrious emperor of Constantinople'" rejoicing the wonders God had wrought through him "'to the honour and glory of His name, to the advantage of the Apostolic See, and to the profit of the people of Christendom.'" He exhorted the new emperor to restore the empire to the obedience of the Roman Catholic Church and to safeguard church property "'so that without any confusion there may be rendered to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's.'"[56] Baldwin received the title of Knight of the Holy See.[57] Baldwin again wrote in early 1205 requesting religious persons be sent from the chief orders. In response Innocent wrote the hierarchy in France on May 25, 1205 requesting "'men of each order, praiseworthy in character and in learning, and fervent in religion.'" He promised "'it would be no source of hardship for many of you to go to a land abounding in silver and gold and gems, well supplied with grain, wine, and oil, and rich in great quantities of all good things.' He assured them that their spiritual rewards would even surpass their temporal gains - if they would but serve in Greece 'to the honor and glory of Him, from Whom is the gift of all knowledge.'"[58]

On November 13, 1204 Innocent III wrote to the Catholic clergy in the East invoking the words of the psalmist saying that the transfer of imperial power in Constantinople to the Latins was "the Lord's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes."[59] When complaints were lodged that the Catholics had absconded with church property and relics in various parts of the new Latin kingdoms in Greece, Innocent III replied by letter in which he alluded to the destruction of the golden calf the Israelites made and worshiped. [60] By 1205 Innocent had a more complete picture of the reality of what had transpired in Constantinople, and wrote in scorn to Boniface of Montferrat: "'you rashly violated the purity of your vows; and, turning your arms not against the Saracens but against Christians [not heretics], you applied yourselves not to the recovery of Jersusalem, but to seize Constantinople, preferring earthly to heavenly riches.'"[61] In the same eyes as Pontius Pilate, Innocent absolved himself of the exploits by denouncing the perpetrators. On July 12, 1205 he wrote Cardinal Peter Capuano: "'How can the church of the Greeks be expected to return to devotion to the Apostolic See, when it has seen the Latins setting an example of evil, and doing the devil's work, so that already, and with good reason, the Greeks hate them worse than the dogs?'"[62] On August 5, 1206, he again upbraided the Venetians for diverting his grand army brought together through so much toil and expense. Nevertheless he declares: "'It is true, I am glad that Constantinople has returned to the obedience of the holy Roman Church, its mother, but I should have been much more pleased if Jerusalem had been restored to the Christians.'" [63] The empire of Constantinople was divided amongst the crusaders. The Venetians got a large portion including islands and important ports. The Lombards eventually moved into Thessalonika and Macedonia. The Bergundians received lands in the Morea or the environs of Athens. The French received Constantinople.

In 1208 the pontiff proclaimed a crusade with little response. Just four years later a shameful response occurred, however. Apparently believing the long history of crusade failures could be attributed to the avarice and impurity of the crusaders, an idea was somehow instigated that innocent children could successfully undertake a crusade to liberate the holy land. Although the papacy surely did not place such an idea in the hearts of the people, it had placed the crusading fervor in their hearts which gave birth to this excess, and clergy actively promoted the idea. Some said the sea would dry up in 1213 allowing the children to cross. Although some tried to dissuade this suicidal mission, others showered gifts on the children to help them on their way. Thus, about 50,000 minors tossed themselves to the wind, and the wind was not kind. History does not record what happened to those, if any, who arrived in Palestine, but most were robbed or tricked out of their presents, returned, or perished.[64]

"29 At the time appointed he shall return, and come toward the south; but it shall not be as the former, or as the latter. 30 For the ships of Chittim shall come against him: therefore he shall be grieved, and return, and have indignation against the holy covenant: so shall he do; he shall even return, and have intelligence with them that forsake the holy covenant." The Hebrew word being rendered into "return" in verses 29 and 30 is the perfect form of the Hebrew word in verse 28. It means to stop and turn aside; to turn around and go a different direction; to cease; to return. Innocent III was not done with exploits. He wanted to regain the Holy Land. In April 1213 Innocent issued his letter, Quia major, in which he proclaimed the Fifth Crusade.[65] He called the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215 which in part addressed this issue. Remember, that its 71 constitutions were pre-written by Innocent or under his direction. The seventy-first dealt with the proposed expedition for the recovery of the holy Land which it called "this business of Jesus Christ," and called for the clergy to preach the cross. It granted "unto all those who undertake this work in person and at their own expense, full pardon for their sins about which they are heartily contrite and have spoken in confession, and we promise them an increase of eternal life at the recompensing of the just." Those who did not personally go, but sent suitable men in their stead also received a pardon from sin according to the Council.[66] The Council also concerned itself with the liberation of the empire of Constantinople apparently because of Greek resistance. "Yet though the apostolic see has eagerly sought a remedy on its behalf by earnest endeavour and many forms of assistance, though for long Catholics have striven by grievous toils, by burdensome expense, by care, sweat, tears and bloodshed, yet the hand that extended such aid could not wholly, hindered by sin, snatch the empire from the yoke of the enemy. Thus not without cause we are troubled with grief. But because the body of the church would be shamefully deformed by the lack of a loved member, namely the aforesaid empire, and be sadly weakened and suffer loss; and because it could rightly be assigned to our sloth and that of the church, if it were deprived of the support of the faithful... we firmly propose to come to the help of the empire with swift and effective aid."[67] Innocent III died in 1216, and Honorius III was elected.

This Fifth Crusade birthed two new Orders called the Knights of Christ and the Knights of the Sword. The first departures of the Fifth Crusade were in August 1217. The strategy of this crusade shifted to liberating Jerusalem by attacking at a prime source of the local Muslim power - Egypt. Landing first in Palestine and finding only famine, much of the soldiery fell to looting the settlers, but as prophecied, once again the vile one came towards the south. After the death of Saladin in 1193 his empire was divided amongst his relatives, and after seven years of contention Saladin's brother emerged as the head of the Sultanate in Egypt. The Ayyubid dynasty thus survived for awhile as a sort of confederacy of about eleven sultans which united against the crusaders but otherwise tended to squabble amongst themselves. Cairo, Egypt remained the head sultanate, but emerged with a separate identity once again.[68] On May 27, 1218 the crusaders landed in Egypt. They first initiated a siege of Damietta lasting almost a year and one half in which the Muslims failed to drive the crusaders away. The Sultan of Cairo offered terms. The city and Kingdom of Jerusalem was to be returned to the Catholics with sufficient money to repair the walls, and a return of Catholic prisoners. A few rights were reserved. Most of the barons leading the army favored the proposal, but the papal legate, Cardinal Pelagius, and the Italian nobles rejected the offer believing not only Jerusalem, the object of their crusade, but Damietta and more would be won upon the arrival of Frederick II. The crusaders noticed a marked activity on the part of the Sultan to get provisions and reinforcements into Damietta, most of which the crusaders foiled. Inhabitants began to flee. On November 5, 1219 the crusaders saw an empty tower on the city walls. They advanced and entered the city. Prepared to put this city of approximately 70,000 to the sword, they met with a pestilential odor. Only about 3000 inhabitants remained. Their valor drooped to inaction in the face of this city of corpses. About one hundred thousand crowns of precious stuff was looted, over the thunders of the clergy.

Next the crusaders advanced into the Egyptian interior where their delay had given the Sultan of Cairo time to fortify Mansurah. Pelagius essentially took complete control, but simply camped in the region for about a month. Then the Muslims brought ships through a canal, and destroyed the Catholic fleet cutting off supplies. The Muslims opened the canal sluices flooding the fields. The inaction of the papal legate had led things from bad to worse. Famine and contagion broke out. Pelagius sued for peace by offering Damietta back to the Muslims and an evacuation of Egypt. The king of Jerusalem pleaded for assistance for the crusaders, and the Sultan of Cairo, the nephew of Saladin and an infidel to the Catholics, handed out 30,000 loaves of bread to the crusaders. The remnants of the army left Egypt on September 8, 1221, and returned to Europe.[69]

The papacy began preparing the next wave of crusaders. Honorius III stood by the legate, Pelagius. He blamed the European kings with the failure, especially Frederick II of Germany. Although not going in person, Frederick had renewed his vows three times, and supplied vessels and provisions for the crusade. Angered, Frederick made overtones of war. The pontiff called a grand assembly at Verona to coordinate the European powers. It was proposed that Frederick marry Yolande, daughter of the heir to the throne of Jerusalem, John of Brienne. Frederick accepted, and the marriage was later solemnized in Rome. Frederick was freshly invigorated with crusading spirit, but asked for a two year extension because of rumblings in his domains of Sicily and Naples. The pontiff cared not for Frederick's ambitions in Italy, and asked for new assurances which Frederick gave. Then Frederick, seeing only a future enemy in John of Brienne, his new father-in-law, disputed John's claims to rule in the Kingdom of Jerusalem, once reestablished, and claimed the title for himself. Pontiff Honorius favored the position of Frederick, apparently believing it would increase the chance of success for the crusade by making Frederick more vigorous. The pontiff deposed the title of John, and vested it in Frederick. Desiring more cooperation with the crusade the pontiff also threatened the king of France, Louis VIII, with excommunication if he did not immediately make peace with England.[70] While the papacy was trying to prepare a second wave of crusaders, however, other events began to reshape the character of this, its second attempt to regain the Kingdom of Jerusalem. This new force caused the papacy to first stop, and then divide its efforts, thus, its second attempt to regain Jerusalem would not be the same as the former.

It was at this point that the ships of Chittim enter the prophecy. The key is where is Chittim? Here, I credit Thomas Newton, Dissertations on the Prophecies which have Remarkably been Fulfilled, and at this Time are Fulfilling in the World (London 1803), pp.74-77, with some of the best reading besides the scriptures. Kittim was one of the sons of Javan. After the flood they were among the peoples who divided "the isles of the Gentiles." Genesis 10:1-5. Wherever Kittim or Chittim settled was apparently given the name forever by the Hebrews like the Assyrians became known as the name for the descendants of Asshur who built Ninevah. Genesis 10:11. Numbers 24:24: "And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber, and he also shall perish forever." Thus, Chittim is probably not too far from the coasts of Assyria in the northeast Mediterranean. Isaiah discusses the "land of Chittim." Isaiah 23:1,12. Jeremiah said: "For pass over the isles of Chittim, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing." Jeremiah 2:10. Ezekiel said: "Of the oaks of Bashan have they made thine oars; the company of the Ashurites have made thy benches of ivory, brought out of the isles of Chittim." Ezekiel 27:6. Cyprus has never been known for an ivory trade. There were also isles of Elishah. Ezekiel 27:7. Although not scriptural, 1 Maccabees 1:1 provides an important clue as to where the Hebrews were referring when they spoke of Chittim: "After Alexander son of Philip, the Macedonian, who came from the land of Kittim, had defeated Darius, king of the Persians and the Medes, he succeeded him as King. (He had previously become king of Greece)." OAB. In 1 Maccabees 8:5, OAB, Kittim got translated to Macedonians: "Philip, and Perseus king of the Macedonians [a note says "or Kittim"]...." The ancient Jewish historian to the Romans, Josephus, also discusses Chittim or Chethim as referencing the isles and coasts west of Israel and Judah. Besides Cyprus and its city of Citium, the first islands are in the Aegean Sea.[71] Now Macedonia is what the Greeks and Romans called the northeastern coast of Greece on the Aegean Sea where the Greek isles are. The northern-most tip of the coast is where Constantine built Constantinople, now Istanbul, Turkey. Even before the conquests of Alexander "the Great," ancient Macedonia had incorporated a huge area including Byzantium (later Constantinople) and the coast of the Black Sea. At the time Daniel made the prophecy, Darius I attacked and damaged Byzantium, which the Greeks had settled around 659 B.C.[72]

Modern scholars have followed the lead of the Jews who tried to establish this vision. Most who have attempted to interpret the vision have placed the events of Antiochus IV's reign at verse 30, saying the ships of Chittim came against him in his second campaign. Catholic interpretations of the Bible even substitute the words "the islands of Italy" (see, Ezechiel 27:6) or "the galleys and the Romans" (see, Daniel 11:30).[73] However, as none except the OAB seem to admit, such an interpretation causes the vision to fail, and nothing the LORD does fails.

While the papacy was trying to organize the second wave of the Fifth Crusade in Veroli in April 1222, Greek rebels centered in Epirus to the west (under Theodore Doukas) and Nicaea to the east (under Vatatzes) were making marked gains. In March 1222 the young heir to the throne of the Lombard Kingdom of Thessalonika, Demetrius of Montferrat, was in Italy seeking help against the Greek rebel, Theodore Doukas, who was winning back Macedonia town by town from his rebel base west in Epirus. Thessalonika was the major city of Macedonia. Theodore probably first came to the attention of the papacy when in 1217 he captured the newly crowned Latin Emperor of Constantinople, Peter of Courtenay (France), after Peter apparently upset Theodore by rashly and unsuccessfully laying siege to Durrazzo as he traveled from Italy through Epirus to his new kingdom with the papal legate, Colonna. The pontiff wrote to France for the bishops to preach a crusade, and Theodore released the papal legate. However, Peter nor his company were heard from again. Honorius III then addressed a letter to the Venetian clergy in which he called Theodore "one of the foremost sons of the Church," and exhorted them not to allow any crusaders into the territories of Theodore. By 1221 Theodore had captured a ring of fortresses around Thessalonika. The Lombard baronies of Thessaly had been extinguished. A letter of Honorius shows a serious concern for the fate of the Kingdom of Thessalonika due to the fall of the Latin garrison at Serres. He had now declared Theodore excommunicate. In March 1222 Honorius received the visit of Demetrius, now 15 years old, in Anagni. Also in March 1222 Honorius urged the Latin Patriarch to give what help he could to the Archbishop of Serres, now in the control of Theodore. Honorius began to preach a crusade against Theodore. The sea route to Thessalonika was now endangered by Theodore's control of Platamona, which guarded the entrance of the Gulf of Thessalonika. In late 1222 a small vanguard contingent of the crusade reached Thessalonika under Hubert of Biandrate. Having the Lombard contingent of the city apparently reinforced seemed to cause some unrest in the city, and Queen Margaret soon left.

In early 1223 Theodore laid siege to Thessalonika. Honorius offered 15,000 marks toward the crusade, and excommunicated Theodore again. This money had been raised for the crusade to the holy land. "From the number of documents drafted by the chancery clerks at Anagni in September, 1223, and concerned with affairs in the principality of Achaea and the lordship of Athens, it is apparent that Pope Honorius, though he might find relief at Anagni from the heat of Rome, found none from the anxiety under which he labored in the cause of Latin Christendom in Greece."[74] In 1224 Frederick II was approached, and lent 9,000 marks. Honorius wrote the various princes and lords of Achaia, Athens, and Euboia requiring their cooperation. In January 1224 Honorius extended papal protection to everyone participating in the crusade. Rather than launching the crusaders to Palestine or Egypt, a crusade against Theodore was assembled at Brindisi under a papal legate in March 1224. "On 20 May [1224] the pope wrote Blanche of Castile, 'illustrious queen of France,' to try to persuade her husband King Louis VIII to send aid to the Latin Emperor Robert of Courtenay, son of the unfortunate Peter and cousin to the king, to help defend the empire of Romania [east Greece], 'which in the time of King Louis' own father [Philip Augustus] was won by Frenchmen in a glorious display of valor, and where there has been created, as it were, a new France.'"[75]

At the same critical time the king of Thessalonika, William Guglielmo IV of Montferrat, was taken ill in Brindisi, delaying the departure of the crusaders. On November 28, 1224 the pontiff wrote a letter addressed to all the clergy and knights in the Latin kingdom of Romania (Constantinople), assuring them that the crusade army under Guglielmo would depart in March 1225. The pontiff himself had devised a detailed campaign plan, and gave Emperor Robert of Constantinople careful instructions about launching the first attack against Theodore from the east so the crusaders could surprise Theodore from the west. Robert sent an army which laid siege to Serres, but upon hearing of a defeat of their countrymen near Poimanenon (Asia Minor) by the Nicaean Greek rebels, the army began returning, and a contingent of Theodore's army captured the officers. The details regarding the simultaneous advance of the Nicaean Greeks are given below. World history is bereft of the details of the siege of Thessalonika by Theodore, including his use of ships. We know virtually nothing of his naval capacity. One may reasonably surmise that he had some naval power from the west coast towns of Epirus (Greece), and had captured some vessels in his conquests of Thessaly and Macedonia, but we have no details. While most details of this siege of Thessalonika are lacking in English history books, including whether Theodore was using ships to blockade the fortified harbor of Thessalonika, the historian Donald Nicol observes there appeared to be some reason no supplies nor help could get through from Athens or Morea. The garrison of Thessalonika was reduced to extremities, and Thessalonika was forced to submit around December 1224. If ships with news and supplies could get in to port, one would think the city would have held out till the expected crusade of March 1225. Thus, the province of Macedonia, called the Latin Kingdom of Thessalonika, was the first Latin state of Greece to fall after an existence of merely two decades. The crusaders left in March 1225 with the half-brothers, William and Demetrius of Montferrat, at the helm to recover Thessalonika, but entering Thessaly, William died. The landing in Thessaly, which was far short of their ultimate destination of Thessalonika, may also speak of some naval strength of Theodore. The crusaders dejectedly turned around and returned. Demetrius died in 1227 under the protection of Frederick II who inherited his title.[76]

At the same time the other Greek rebel kingdom of Nicaea was also making headway under Vatatzes. His arms had successfully fought the Latins in Asia Minor in Poimanenon and the land south of the Sea of Marmara where he took several Latin strongholds. He crossed over the Hellespont (Dardanelles), and pillaged the trading stations at Gallipoli, which guarded the south entrance to the Sea of Marmara. In the Aegean Sea Vatatzes' fleet of ships had been attacking and conquering the Greek Isles one by one - Lesbos, Chios, Samos, Icaria, and Cos. Thus, the Latin Empire of Constantinople was surrounded by Greek rebel kingdoms on the east and west. Emperor Robert sought a truce, which apparently made him unpopular with his nobles. In 1225 Vatatzes granted a treaty which significantly reduced Latin holdings in Greek Asia Minor. The Latins were left with only the eastern shore of the Bosporus and the environs of Nicomedia. Around April 1228 Theodore Doukas entered a treaty with the Count Orsini, which he sealed with the marriage of his sister or niece to Orsini. The Count Orsini was probably the most eminent privateer in the Ionian sea-basin through his choice of settling on the islands of Cephalonia (Kefalonia) and Zante (Zakynthos) which rendered easy monitoring of ship traffic from Italy. Theodore's desire for more control over shipping was apparent.[77]

Back in Italy Honorius III died in 1227, and Gregory IX was elected in his place. Frederick II did sail from Brindisi at the head of a crusading force, but reporting that he got sick, he returned to Ottranto. A messenger from Frederick did not diminish the thunder of Gregory who denounced Frederick as a perjured and faithless prince. This set off a feud between Frederick and the pontiff which never closed. Gregory excommunicated the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick. Upon hearing of this discord the Sultan of Egypt sent Frederick presents, and invited Frederick to the East, offering to deliver Jerusalem. Seeking the crown to the title of king of Jerusalem promised to him by Honorius III, the excommunicated Frederick then led his own small but elite force of 600 knights on to the East despite a papal envoy sent to forbid his departure. Upon arriving in Syria Frederick was joyously received until two papal envoys arrived to denounce Frederick. Then all clergy greeted him with contempt. About this time the Sultan of Damascus died after having formed a coalition with the Sultan of Carismia against the Sultan of Cairo, Egypt. In this confusion the Sultan of Cairo rode an army into Palestine, where he met Frederick who reminded him of his promise to deliver Jerusalem. About this time the new Sultan of Damascus declared war against the Sultan of Cairo. Frederick entered negotiations with the Sultan of Cairo. Also the Templars suggested to al-Kamil, the Sultan of Cairo, that he might capture Frederick who was planning to bathe in the Jordan River. Not being moved by such treachery the Sultan of Cairo sent the letter of the Templars to Frederick. Thus, in 1229 a ten year truce was entered between the Sultan and Frederick in which Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth, and Thoron were surrendered by the Muslims while they retained the right to worship at the Mosque of Omar. Catholics and Muslims alike decried this agreement. Upon arriving in Jerusalem Frederick found the Church of the Holy Sepulcher deserted by the clergy. Without ceremony Frederick placed the crown on his own head, and was proclaimed king.[78]

Things were definitely not like the former. The Patriarch of Jerusalem wrote to the pontiff who decried the conquest of Jerusalem by Frederick. Gregory IX was looking at options. In 1228 Robert, the emperor of Constantinople, died after coming to Gregory to complain of the actions of his Latin lords who had tried to rouse him to action against the Greek rebels. Gregory now entered an arrangement in April 1229 with John of Brienne, Frederick's father-in-law, who, it was proclaimed, distinguished himself in the disastrous crusade to Egypt. In return for service John was promised men and money to protect the constricted dominion of Constantinople for which he was granted co-emperorship for his lifetime acting as regent for Baldwin. First, however, John led papal armies against Frederick's dominions in the Kingdom of Naples (Apulia), Italy. Meanwhile, Frederick had moved on to the port city of Acre where the clergy imposed the interdict, suspending activities of the Church. Frederick closed the gates of the city, and posted archers. He had monks dragged from altars and publicly beaten. But he also heard that papal armies had advanced against his Italian provinces, so he quit the East. With his arrival in the fall of 1229 Frederick reanimated his troops and quickly drove John's papal forces out of his Italian cities.[79]

Finding life difficult when everyone associated with him was excommunicated, Frederick sent ambassadors to Gregory who did not desire open war with the powerful emperor. Some conciliation was entered, and Frederick was invited to a council at Spoleto to talk of further crusading. Frederick brought up the ten year truce, but the council continued. However, Gregory then did exhort his prelates to preach peace for awhile. Gregory assessed all the Catholic followers a denier per week to defray the costs of its war. John of Brienne retired to France where with papal aide he spent about one year gathering a sizable army. In the fall of 1231 John arrived in Constantinople aboard Venetian ships. John won some smaller victories on land while the Venetians won some victories by sea, but by 1235 his forces and resources had been depleted after fighting off the allied forces of Vatatzes and the Bulgarian Tsar, John Asen II. The Greeks blockaded the port of Constantinople with approximately 300 Greek ships. In 1236 Geoffrey II of Villehardouin hastened to Constantinople with ships and troops. He engaged the Greek ships, destroying about fifteen of them, and entered the city, thus ending the immediate Greek threat to the Latin capitol. As revealed by papal documents dated July 12, 1235 and June 27, 1236, the Greek rebels were active in the Athenian lordship as well with frequent attacks on Thebes. A two year truce was entered to end in 1238. In March 1237 John of Brienne died, and his successor by the papal agreement was Baldwin II who traveled western Europe stressing the plight of Constantinople.[80]

For more than fifteen years the Greek rebel kingdoms had thwarted the papacy's plans for a crusade to recapture the Kingdom of Jerusalem. In a letter of May 21, 1237, Gregory warned "the nobleman Vatatzes" by "announcing a great crusade for the protection of the Holy Land and, if need be, for the assistance of the Latin 'empire of Romania,' which was threatened by Vatatzes." In a reply letter, which has been lost if sent to the papacy, Vatatzes asserted in summary "that the see of Rome was in no wise different from the other ancient bishoprics, and that he, and no usurping Latin, was the direct successor of the great Constantine, the Ducae, and the Comneni. The papacy should never have condoned the Latin seizure of Constantinople nor contrived the election of the late John of Brienne. ...The conduct of the Latins and the existence of their alleged empire were inconsistent with the papal hope of freeing the Holy Land." The pontiff's grief caused by the arms and ships of Chittim were addressed in two letters. On January 18, 1238 Gregory IX wrote to the Latin clergy in Greece: "'Sad is the news we have heard from the city of Constantinople, and no little the grief it has caused us, but we hasten to apply a remedy to counter the perilous ills of which men tell us.'" Gregory reported famine in the city, and desertion in the ranks. Gregory's remedy was to require the Latin clergy to pay one third of their incomes and movable goods. He reminded the clergy that their safety was bound with the safety of Constantinople, and told them Philip was empowered to compel payment. A second letter of January 18, 1238 to Count Matteo Orsini of Cephalonia and Zante reminded him of his interests in Constantinople, saying: "'if, God forbid, the Greeks should obtain possession of the aforesaid city.'" The pontiff promised him not only the remission of sins for his assistance, but "unending praise among men and the crown of supernal achievement in heaven."[81]

Indeed, an army was assembling at the behest of the papacy, and Gregory asked them to change their plans from Palestine to a more pressing matter closer to home - Constantinople. However, the French particularly were adamant about continuing the crusade to Palestine saying they would not forsake their vows. As the leaders assembled at Lyons they received a nuncio from Gregory directing them to return to their homes and charging them with betrayal. Then Frederick II advised the French to wait because he was gathering troops as well, but many of the French left anyway. About this time the pontiff and Frederick fell into a dispute regarding Sardinia. Gregory once again excommunicated Frederick. Gregory used his newest and greatest political tool: "he preached a crusade against Frederick, saying, 'there was more merit in combatting a prince who was rebellious to the successors of St. Peter than in delivering Jerusalem." Frederick then brought all his available forces to bear on the papacy, quickly defeating the papal forces, and marched on Rome, which he laid to siege. Many of the crusaders who had left for Palestine or Constantinople returned to take sides in the Italian civil war. The crusading vows of all those in Hungary were commuted to fight against Frederick. When the French assembled their forces in Palestine there was but a small fraction of the original army, so they were not able to take advantage of the civil wars of the Muslim Ayyubid princes. The ten year truce of Frederick had expired in 1239, and the Sultan of Damascus had re-entered Jerusalem destroying the tower of David. The Duke of Brittany recovered much booty in a raid of Damascus, but the forces of the Duke of Burgundy were cut down in a march to Gaza.[82] Nothing of import seemed to happen in Constantinople. Just before his death in 1241, on May 29, 1241 Gregory IX wrote the clergy of Greece concerning the tithe to be paid, and lamenting in regards to the see of Constantinople that "'yet there was no one willing or able to extend a helping hand.'"[83] In 1242 Vatatzes became the center of Greek power by attacking Thessalonika, and subjecting Theodore Doukas' successor.[84] Meanwhile, although Frederick had sent some small contingents of arms back to Palestine, their presence only seemed to add to the turmoil. With his own civil war on his hands Frederick offered no further assistance to his self-proclaimed Kingdom of Jerusalem. The Tartars/Mongols then appeared from the East, prompting the Sultan of Damascus to seek an alliance with the Franks for which he handed over Jerusalem to the Catholics. The Tartars then allied themselves with Egypt, and dealt a crushing blow to the Catholic-Damascus allies. Once again in August 1244 Jerusalem fell to these Khwarizmians.[85]

Boyd sums up this crusade by saying: "Though five hundred thousand warriors left Europe, at one time or another, for Syria or Egypt, they never aggregated a really formidable army on the Nile or Jordan. The Egyptian enterprise robbed the armies of that enthusiasm inspired by the sight of the holy places." "Owing to the eagerness of the Popes to have Europe engaged in Church wars the faithful were distracted by the preaching of several crusades at once. No one could tell which was the cause of Christ and which was not." [86] None were.

There was yet one more great eastern crusade known as the Sixth (sometimes Seventh) Crusade. Gregory's successor, pontiff Innocent IV, called the First Council of Lyons at which he thundered against Frederick saying, "'I am the vicar of Jesus Christ. All that I shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven according [to] the promises of the Son of God. Therefore I declare Frederick, attainted and convicted of sacrilege and heresy, to be excommunicated and degraded from his empire. I absolve from their oaths all who have ever sworn fealty to him. I forbid any, under pain of excommunication, to henceforth, yield obedience to him. I command the electors to elect another Emperor, and I reserve the right to dispose of the Kingdom of Sicily.'" This council concluded a new crusade should be preached. Frederick continued to war against the papacy. In addition Tartars threatened the eastern German border. The English were remonstrating against the pontiff for his assumption of feudal powers in England. This left Louis IX of France to take the cross, which he did partly to defend the French name in the East. His three brothers joined him, and a small but well equipped army of about 15,000 men was prepared.[87]

The crusaders assembled in Cyprus in 1248-9 where a minor number of crusaders joined from various countries. This crusade seemed a repeat of the prior Egyptian crusade. The crusaders took Damietta, Egypt in about one month. Receiving further reinforcements from France, they advanced towards Cairo on November 20, but Mansurah proved the stumbling block once again. After fording a canal the vanguard of the army disobeyed orders and followed retreating Muslims into the city where a trap had apparently been set for them. They were pummelled from above in the narrow streets which did not allow them to fight back. With the loss of the majority of the vanguard in Mansurah, and further reinforcements of the Egyptians, the out-numbered crusaders were forced to retreat. On April 6, 1250 Louis surrendered, and was taken captive. By paying a huge ransom, and surrendering Damietta, Louis was able to free himself, but left about 12,000 captives. He was able to regain the captive survivors by staying in Palestine where he simultaneously negotiated with the Egyptians and the Sultan of Damascus, who both wanted his alliance. He was able to enter an agreement with the Egyptians who released the prisoners. After fortifying several cities, he then quitted Palestine, never to return.[88] Beside a raid on Alexandria, Egypt by Peter of Cyprus, this would be the last major crusade to the East. One needs to keep in mind there were dozens of smaller crusades amongst the major ones, a few after Louis'.

Meanwhile the Greeks were still fighting to liberate themselves on the papacy's other war-front. On August 20, 1252 Innocent IV wrote bishops of the Greek peninsula, Negroponte and Olena, that revenues from the churches of Athens and Corinth would be used to pay one thousand marks of silver to his beloved sons the doge of Venice, the prince of Achaea, and other barons or persons willing to supply men "'for a whole year of war'" to defend Constantinople against Vatatzes, the Greek Emperor of Nicaea. In 1258 the Grecian rebel Despotate of Epirus rose again under Michael II of Epirus who married his daughter to Manfred, prince of Taranto and future king of Sicily and south Italy, with the dowry of his claim to certain Grecian cities and lands. In return Manfred sent Philippe Chinard at the head of a fleet of ships against the other Grecian rebel kingdom of Nicaea. Nevertheless, in 1259 under its new emperor, Michael VIII Palaeologus, the Kingdom of Nicaea not only dealt a deadly blow to the rival Grecian rebels of Epirus at the battle of Pelagonia, but also the local Catholic barons. Prince William of Villehardouin was captured. The Kingdom of Nicaea was now the undisputed power of the region, and once again set its sights on Constantinople. In 1261 while most of the Latin ships and forces were on a raid of the Greek island of Daphnusia in the Black Sea, a small Grecian patrolling force under Alexius Strategopoulus left the Nicene shores, and crossed the Hellespont to the city of Gallipoli. From there they traveled along the north shore of the sea of Marmara and west to Constantinople. This would be the last time ships of Chittim would come against the Latins of Constantinople for Strategopoulus learned a very small force was guarding Constantinople, and through some means was able to enter the city. About this time the Latin raiding party was returning, and the fleeing residents of Constantinople quickly evacuated in their Venetian ships. Constantinople once more belonged to the Greeks.[89]

The church historian Raynaldus tells us the newly appointed pontiff Urban IV was stunned by the loss which fell upon his ears like an explosion ("veluti ex quodam terrifico sonitu vehementer attoniti"). The Roman pontiff "looked to France, however, 'the mirror and exemplar of all the Christian kingdoms,' to begin action against the Greek usurper, for then the other states in Europe would follow suit and the expedition would soon get under way." Collectors of crusading funds were sent out to the states of Europe, but the collection of funds was far less than necessary for an expedition against the victorious Greeks of Nicaea. It was not for lack of effort. Even the doge of Venice was grieved over the loss of these profitable domains. Dreaming of a reconquest of the Bosporus the doge of Venice wrote Urban IV: "It is not unknown to your Holiness how great, how honorable, and how excellent the empire of Romania was and is for the strength of Christendom, nor with what effort and expense as well as loss of life it was acquired and thereafter defended with the support of the Holy Roman Church...."[90]

The purity of early Christianity was long gone. The crusaders were not messengers of heaven, but messengers of war and persecution for the sake of colonization by which the merchants of the earth were enriched. Yet, the crusaders were impoverished. The wars in the east had brought nothing but misery to the people of western Europe. They were losing their taste for this costly and unproductive warfare; but the Roman pontiff and those enriched by providing ships and warfare equipment did not give up. The pontiff continued to call more intelligence with more councils - people who did not understand the true covenant with our Lord. The Seventh (eighth) Crusade ended in 1272 when Edward quitted Palestine having succeeded only in taking Nazareth after killing Mussulmen occupants. Louis IX of France had died of sickness in the taking of the ruins of Carthage, Africa. About the same time the pontiff died, and his replacement was Thibault, Archdeacon of Liege, or Gregory X. Being from Palestine, hopes were high that he could turn the tide. The Latin states in Palestine were dying. "The [public] sentiment was that the Crusades only promoted the shedding of human blood, and that the people could find sufficient cause for such sacrifice in defending themselves; ...that there was no more national reason for punishing the Mussulmen than Jews, neither of which could ever be converted by wars; that war did not appear to be agreeable to God, who had permitted so many misfortunes to overcome the Crusaders. Such were the conclusions forced on Christendom [Catholics] after two hundred years' of experience, which involved the loss of millions of precious lives and billions of treasure."[91] To overcome public sentiment the Second Council of Lyons of 1274 was called largely to organize a crusade to support the last eastern remnants of the Palestinian states. The council adopted the following words regarding the Holy Land in its first constitution.

Whose heart will not soften with compassion for her? Alas! [T]he very land in which the Lord deigned to work our salvation and which, in order to redeem humanity by payment of his death, he has consecrated by his own blood, has been boldly attacked and occupied over a long period by the impious enemies of the christian name, the blasphemous and faithless Saracens. They not only rashly retain their conquest, but lay it waste without fear. They slaughter savagely the christian people there to the greater offence of the creator, to the outrage and sorrow of all who profess the catholic faith. "Where is the God of the Christian?" is the Saracens' constant reproach, as they taunt them. Such scandal, which neither mind can fully conceive nor tongue tell, inflamed our heart and roused our courage so that we, who from experience overseas have not only heard of those events but have looked with our eyes and touched with our hands, might rise to avenge, as far as we can, the insult to the crucified one. Our help will come from those afire with zeal of faith and devotion. Because the liberation of the holy Land should concern all who profess the catholic faith, we convoked a council, so that after consultation with prelates, kings, princes and other prudent men, we might decide and ordain....[92]

See what abominations the beast speaks? "Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing." James 3:9-10. The Lord does not need us to avenge for he is omnipotent - He can destroy us with famine, disease and the like. He has waited thousands of years for us to learn to love one another, and continues to wait due to our disobedience. "As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?" Ezekiel 33:11. Our Lord told the Romans: "Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good." Romans 12:19-21.

The Second Council of Lyons also addressed the proposed unity with the Grecian church offered by the Greek emperor, Michael VIII. There is no dispute among historians that Michael offered the proposed unity as a negotiating tool to stave off continuing papal action against the Greeks. Again conversion by threat of force. On May 24, 1267 an agreement or treaty was ratified in the presence of the pontiff and fourteen cardinals between William of Villehardouin and Charles of Anjou in which William made concessions in order to gain Charles' military help in regaining his prior lands in the Morea of Greece. Three days later on May 27, 1267 Charles of Anjou entered another agreement with the dispossessed emperor Baldwin against the schismatic emperor Michael VIII, his usurper, reading "Michael Palialogus schismaticus imperatoris sibi nomen usurpans." The treaty states it was signed in the presence of and with the approval of pontiff Clement IV. The treaty laments the separation of the Latin empire of Greece by schismatics from the sacrosanct Roman Church. In return for suzerainty over Grecian lands, Charles promised within six or seven years to provide 2,000 soldiers for a period of one year for the alleged noble task of recovering Baldwin's kingdom. Gone was Innocent III's disapproval of shamefully attacking fellow brethren. At the battle of Tagliacozzo on August 23, 1268, William rode by Charles' side in the victory. Charles was thus emerging as a new antagonist against Michael VIII. It is not surprising in this mesh of political intrigue that in 1274 we find an envoy from Michael VIII at the Second Council of Lyons solemnly accepting the primacy of the Roman Church and pledging the obedience of Michael VIII. Even the Church later realized the ploy of Michael VIII for on November 18, 1281 pontiff Martin IV promulgated a bull of excommunication against Michael VIII, a heretic and schismatic "like his people." (not Christian brothers).[93]

At almost the same time the Catholics were forced to return out of the Latin Empire in Greece, they were beset in Palestine by the new Egyptian rulers. The Egyptian Empire of the Ayyubids had been overthrown from within by their soldier slaves, the Mamluks, who were a Caucasian people the Ayyubids had stolen from the area of the north Black Sea. In 1268 Antioch surrendered to Egyptian general, Bibars. In 1289 Tripolis was taken. In 1291 Khalil took Acre, the last important city. Then the remaining Catholic possessions in the Holy Land were abandoned to the Egyptians.

"31 And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice [symbolizing the true sacrifice made by Jesus; they corrupt the sacrament], and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate." The Crusades "were asked for in the name of the Pope, preached in the name of the Pope, and carried on under the auspices of the Pope. The banner of the cross was the Pope's invention. Warriors took the oath of the Pope. The Pope granted them absolution and freed them from all obligations except those of the Church."[94] The Roman pontiff had not one but three major exclusive military orders which operated during the Middle Ages under papal charter: the Knights Hospitalers (Knights of the Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem - started as a charity), the Knights Templar, and the Teutonic Knights. These exclusive forces fought his wars in Asia, Africa, and Europe. They were the most formidable fighting forces of the time, and combined two opposite passions: war and worship. Wasn't a prime object of worship in most pagan religions to bring victory in glorious battles of conquest? Bloodletting became chivalrous - glorified. But these warrior "monks" even fought among themselves. A prime example was the feud between the Templars and the Hospitalers between 1199 and 1231 over the crusader state of Antioch. Their inability to cooperate due to their desires to be lord of a feudal state seems to be a prime reason for the fall of the crusader states to the Muslims.[95]

The Roman pontiff called upon emperors to take up arms against "heretics." He polluted the truth, and won the less cumbersome eastern orthodoxy toward western Roman orthodoxy. They who are uncircumcised of heart are as strangers to our Lord, and pollute the sanctuary when they offer His bread, the fat and the blood, for they break His covenant. Ezekiel 44:7. There were no knights of the sword among Jesus' disciples to overcome the evil in the Roman Empire. Jesus did not ordain knights to go forth, and conquer with the sword. He ordained humble men he sent forth as lambs. "But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them. But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister: And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." Mark 10:42-5.

Like the Seleucids the Romans literally took away the daily sacrifice, but more permanently - by destroying the temple in Jerusalem. However, remember that the LORD had told the Jews He did not accept their sacrifices anymore, and the daily sacrifice was first taken away by the Seleucids. The daily sacrifice was representative of things to come. The daily sacrifice can be taken away in a fashion other than the physical. Hebrews 6:6 teaches us: "If they shall fall away ... seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame." The Catholic Church introduced the doctrine of transubstantiation, by which they literally believe Christ is sacrificed afresh on the sacrament table, and that the bread and wine literally become His body and blood, rather than a token of the remembrance of His sacrifice. This is the Paschasian doctrine. "In the year 1059 Berenar, its most outspoken opponent, was summoned before a council of 113 bishops, presided over by Pope Nicholas II and dominated by Cardinal Humbert, and there, in the city of St. Peter and St. Paul, beaten down and humiliated, as he believed under peril of death, he was forced to read aloud this recantation:

I, Berengar, an unworthy deacon of the church of St. Maurice of Angers, acknowledging the true Catholic and Apostolic faith, anathematize every heresy, especially that concerning which I have hitherto been in ill repute.... And I assent to the Holy Roman and Apostolic See, and with mouth and heart I profess that concerning the sacrament of the Lord's Table I hold the faith which the Lord and venerable Pope Nicholas and this holy synod have by evangelical and apostolic authority delivered to be held and have confirmed to me, namely that the bread and wine which are placed on the altar are after consecration not only a sacrament but also the real body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, and that with the senses (sensualiter) not only by way of sacrament but in reality (in veritate) these are held and broken by the hands of the priests and are crushed by the teeth of the faithful."[96]

Many scholars have interpreted verse 31 as occurring during the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes, but this cannot be because 200 years after Antiochus, Jesus said: "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains...." Matthew 24:15-16. The Roman Church is the MOTHER OF ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH; Rome starts the inquisition; "from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up" is 1290 days [years], Daniel 12:11. 1290 years from 168 BC, when Antiochus Epiphanes desecrated the Temple and took away the daily sacrifice, to 1122 AD brings us to the Concordat of Worms (Pactum Calixtinum) signed on September 23, 1122, which brought the investiture contest to a close. This is often called a peace treaty between the papacy and the empire. A similar agreement had already been reached with the English king in 1107. At Worms the German emperor of the Holy Roman Empire agreed that the bishop of Rome should elect bishops and abbots and invest them with the ring and staff, symbols of their spiritual authority. The emperor gave up his prior right to elect bishops and invest them, although he did keep the right to invest them with the scepter, the symbol of secular authority. However, now the bishops answered to the bishop of Rome, rather than the emperor, which was in reality a huge jump in power. The following is King Henry's part of the agreement:

In the name of the holy and indivisible Trinity, I, Henry by the grace of God Emperor Augustus of the Romans, for the love of God and of the holy Roman church and of the Lord Pope Calixtus, and for the cure of my soul, give up to God, and to the holy Apostles of God, Peter and Paul, and to the holy catholic Church all investiture by ring and crozier, and I grant that, in all churches which are in my kingdom or empire, there may be canonical election and free consecration. I restore to the same Roman church such possessions and regalia of St. Peter as I have which were taken away between the beginning of this conflict and the present day, whether in the time of my father or in my own; and I shall faithfully assist to the end that those which I do not have may be restored. With the counsel of princes, and by justice, I shall also give back such possessions as I have of all other churches and princes and others, both clergy and laymen, which were lost in this war, and I shall faithfully assist to the end that those which I do not have be given back. And I give true peace to the Lord Pope Calixtus and to the Roman church and to all who are, or have been, on its side. And I shall faithfully assist in such matters as the holy Roman church asks aid, and I shall do the justice due it in such things as it complains about....

The first immediate result of the agreement was that half of the land and wealth of Germany passed from the control of the emperor to the Roman pontiff since these were in the hands of bishops and abbots.[97]

Many historians seem to overlook the importance of the Concordat, but the Roman Church did not. It knew it had won a great victory in temporal power for which it had sought for hundreds of years although the lay investiture controversy was the last aspect of the battle lasting approximately 75 years. "That he was the spiritual head of the [Roman] Church would hardly have been questioned before, but his authority had been rather that of a suzerain, who was expected to leave the local archbishops and bishops in independent control of their own districts. In imitation of the policy of the temporal rulers, the Popes had striven, with a large measure of success, to convert this suzerainty into a true sovereignty."[98] The papacy now viewed itself as supreme - as the head of the kingdom which would never be destroyed. Calixtus summoned the First Lateran Council, a huge gathering in 1123, which became largely a celebration for the signing of the Concordat and approval of it. The Council's canons of 3,4,8 and 12 address the investiture subject.[99]

Calixtus also had plans for St. Peter's where pilgrims who traveled to its altar every three years received a remission of sins.

Calixtus could have rebuilt the altar and left its identification with Sylvester intact, as Gregory I had done, but by totally concealing the older altar [by building a new one over it], and engraving his own name upon the new one, he superceded Sylvester as the most visible heir of St. Peter. When pilgrims came to the most holy spot in St. Peter's, they would see his name.... Calixtus encouraged this association by bringing the whole First Lateran Council to St. Peter's to participate in the consecration of the altar. The pope and what is estimated to have been between three hundred and one thousand bishops, abbots and cardinals celebrated the consecration on March 25, 1123, as the culmination of the council summoned in large part to approve the Concordat of Worms. The scene was reminiscent of the consecration of the first altar by Sylvester. The date - the anniversary of the feast of the Annunciation of the Blessed Mary - was also carefully chosen. The feast off the annunciation was one of the principal festivals of the year, but the festival of the dedication of the altar would take precedence over it. Every year Christians would be reminded of Calixtus when the confessio was decorated with a mappula and torches in commemoration of the dedication of the altar 'facta a papa Calixto.'[100]

Prior to the Concordat of Worms the bishop of Rome claimed to wield one of the two swords of God created to rule mankind - His spiritual sword. The temporal sword was wielded by the emperor (remember how church historians conceived Constantine as welding the two world's together). After the Concordat of Worms, the canon lawyers began asserting that both swords belonged to the bishop of Rome, who delegated the temporal sword to the emperor. Thus, the bishop of Rome crowned himself with the third crown of his papal tiara. The third crown represented the pontiff's authority over the kings of the world. The second crown represented his spiritual power over mankind, and the first crown symbolized his temporal sovereignty over the papal states.[101] "After Worms... the papacy's star was in the ascendant for the rest of the century, rising to its highest point with the accession of Innocent III in 1198." "The medieval papacy had now reached the zenith of its spiritual and temporal power."[102]

The third crown gave the bishop of Rome the power he needed to be the desolating abomination spoken of by Daniel the prophet. Jesus warned the Jews of Judea to flee to the mountains when the abomination of desolation appeared in the holy place [but in time this warning applies to the seventh seal, herein below]. All the Jews of Judea were persecuted by the Latin church - not just those burned in Jerusalem. "The decade of fighting (1099-1110) which created the Latin Kingdom left behind it, stormed, burned, and depopulated cities. Jews were wiped out together with their Muslim fellow citizens, and whole Jewish communities disappeared." "Massacres happened in all the maritime cities of the kingdom (except, as we shall see, Tyre and Ascalon), and the Jewish communities were wiped out together with the Muslim inhabitants." When Jews did move back, they suffered the same ban they had under Constantine 800 years before - they could not return to Jerusalem.[103] This is another story I will not address, but by the words of Jeremiah: "And I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, among them, till they be consumed from off the land that I gave unto them and to their fathers." Jeremiah 24:10; see also Jeremiah 29:18-19. Jesus said it thusly: "And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." Luke 21:24.

"32 And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. 33 And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil many days." The Roman pontiff began to use his third crown right away. "In 1162-63, Pope Alexander III proposed that instead of waiting for reports of heretics from informers, officials should be sent out to discover them." "In 1231, Gregory IX issued a bull setting down procedures for how church agents or 'inquisitors,' should root out heretics and persuade them to recant: it was the start of the Inquisition. At first the Inquisitor was empowered to cast the accused into prison to loosen their tongues." "Then, in 1252, Innocent IV sanctioned the use of torture to extract confessions. Although the accused were allowed to be tortured only once, inquisitors got around this by calling subsequent torture a 'continuation' of the first. Punishments for convicted heretics were harsh and included imprisonment, the confiscation of property, or being handed over to secular authorities to be burned at the stake."[104] Those who tried to teach true gospel principles were overwhelmed by burning at the stake, imprisonment, etc., for power was given unto him for 1260 years; when the LORD says many days, He does not mean a few years during the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes. Those of understanding did not hurl anathemas and hate, but their love. They followed the example of Jesus. "And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge." Acts 7:59-60.

The enemies of the pontiff also died by the sword. All through the period of the eastern crusades the bishop of Rome continued and expanded his policies in crusading and indulgences. He turned the crusade into his ultimate weapon. With his new power it was no longer necessary to have the goal of purportedly liberating the Holy Land in order to gain pilgrim followers. He continued to have intelligence with whoever would join in his efforts.

If the crusade was a pilgrimage and the crusader a pilgrim, it was at the same time, paradoxically, a holy war, and the crusader a much blessed warrior. In the legislation of the popes, it was this latter theme which became increasingly dominant in the century which began with the pontificate of Alexander III and ended with that of Innocent IV. Throughout this period the crusader was endowed with ever greater and more extensive privileges. His status was more closely defined, his privileges enumerated, the process of fulfilling or legally commuting his obligations clarified, his relationship to the rest of society spelled out in greater detail. Even more striking, however, was the way in which the crusade gradually changed in nature. The pilgrimage motif, though still present, faded in to the background, and the crusade, from being a specific type of holy war, directed against a particular group of non-Christians in a particular area, was transformed into an all-purpose holy war, and instrument to serve the politico-religious policy of the papacy in its combats with all sorts of enemies in all corners of the known world. Crusades against the Balts and Slavs, against the Hohenstaufen and the Ghibellines - these represented a thoroughgoing transformation of the earlier crusade idea.


Thus the pilgrim motif of the early crusades became a convenient legal fiction, which served to justify the rewarding of knights and others with a privileged status that might attract them to fight for the objectives proposed by papal policy.[105]

The main means of inducing people to undertake a crusade was however, always the indulgence by which people were promised a forgiveness of their sins. Among the less conscientious, the indulgence turned into a license for unmitigated rape and pillage with the perverse excuse that these sins were forgiven. Each crusading story has an example. Captives had their gullets slit open to recover any gold they may have swallowed. Women were raped. Captives were sold into slavery. All those things termed the usual ravages of war were committed by at least some segment of the pilgrims of the Roman pontiff.

The process of increasing the numbers of persons who might secure the indulgence proceeded rapidly and relentlessly. In 1188 the bishops of England and France were permitted to grant one-half of a full crusade indulgence to those who paid up their share of the tithe collected for the third crusade, while in 1213, Pope Innocent III directed that those who attended the sermons of crusade preachers should likewise be granted a fractional indulgence - a grant frequently reiterated by his successors. The conditions for the grant of the crusade indulgence and other privileges to non-crusaders were stated in classic form in Ad liberandam (1215), and continually broadened by later popes. In 1252, Innocent IV decreed that the wives of crusaders were to receive the same indulgence that their husbands earned on crusade. In 1263, Urban IV explicitly granted the crusade preachers themselves the full indulgence as a reward for their labors on behalf of the Holy Land. The indulgence was extended to those who collected money and alms in aid of the Holy Land, to missionaries working on Europe's frontiers, to colonists who settled in the Holy Land, to an advance party of scouts sent to spy out conditions there in preparation for a new crusade, to the regents for a crusading king, and ultimately to inquisitors and their helpers, on the theory that they, too, were performing an heroic Christian labor by combatting the inroads of heresy. [106]

In 1245 the Teutonic Knights were given the power to grant plenary indulgences without specific papal authorization to Germans who assisted them in subduing the Prussians whose land they had invaded.[107]

"34 Now when they shall fall, they shall be holpen with a little help: but many shall cleave to them with flatteries. 35 And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed [the end of the 1260 years is not the end of the world, but is the beginning of the latter days]." If persons upheld the papal program, they were flattered and bestowed with privileges, but if they did not they were condemned. For example, Robert I, the Bruce, of Scotland was excommunicated by Clement V for murdering his rival, John Comyn, but nevertheless, in 1323 pontiff John XXII bestowed the royal title on Robert.[108]

Those of understanding were generally those in possession of the Scriptures, who tried to live by scriptural precepts. For instance the Waldenses (named after Waldo) of southern France possessed their own translation of the Scriptures. As early as the twelfth century they sometimes brought unwelcome attention to themselves by refusing to bring their babies to the Catholic priests for baptism, and through other such innocent acts. During the Inquisition such acts brought questioning and persecution. John Wycliffe of England came to bitterly oppose the Church based upon what he learned in the Scriptures. Although he adopted a false doctrine of predestination, his rejection of a secularized, rich clergy laid the foundation for the later Reformation in England. Based on scriptures such as Acts, he rejected the property-centered society. "And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need." Acts 2:44-5. After his death in 1384, his followers, the Lollards, carried a small following.

When John Huss was being sentenced by the Catholic council, tears streamed down his face, but even in the face of the threat of his life, he would not bend to the will of the Roman pontiff and so was burnt at the stake in 1415 for preaching against the sale of indulgences and on moral matters. He offered only to recant that which the council could show him to be false by scripture. His courage inspired his followers, however, who called upon God to help them. Jerome of Prague was arrested for preaching against the treatment of Huss. At first he recanted under duress, but then asked for another hearing in which he reminded those of the council that they were liable to error, being mortals, and that it was a great sin for a priest to wrongly slay a priest. He charged that burning Huss was a crime certain to be punished by God. He told his executioner to light the fire in front of him for he would not be there if he had feared his death. The followers of Huss called for a reform of the clergy, and a review of the temporal possessions of the Church. The council ordered the University of Prague to be closed, but most Bohemians ignored the order. King Wenceslaus, a prior sympathizer now appointed anti-Hussites to a Prague council, but the people killed them, and elected a popular council. After confirming the popular council, the king died, probably by heart attack. The people then began their own repressive campaign against German Catholics.

Even though the papacy successfully called for a crusade against the Hussites, answered by king Sigismund and his Germans, the Hussites used innovative techniques, crossbows, and mobile war wagons to repel the German crusaders again and again. Five crusading attacks into Bohemia/Czechoslovakia over the period of a decade (1420-1431) were successfully repelled.[109] In 1433 Paul Crawar was accused of importing the doctrines of Huss, tried, and burned by the government of Scotland.[110] In 1459 a Hussite, George Podiebrand, was elected king of Bohemia. His ambitious nature led to trouble. In 1466 pontiff Paul II excommunicated him, and ordered his removal from the throne. The pontiff summoned Matthias of Hungary who joined a papal crusade against king George, and conquered large parts of Moravia. Catholic magnates elected Matthias who was crowned in 1469.[111] As time passed Europeans began to taste the spirit of freedom. The advent of the printing press in the fifteenth century brought more knowledge of the gospel to the poor and less educated, and the knowledge of God began to grow in their hearts, thus inspiring a grass roots movement against the repressive system set up by the papacy. For the first time in centuries people were able to read and hear the words of Scripture in their own languages.

"36 And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god [even above the apostles and prophets], and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done. 37 Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers [like the Jews, he loses the truth], nor the desire of women [maintains celibacy], nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all."

The roman pontiff was able to do according to his own will because no man could judge him. According to two sources, Nicholas III (1277-80), who was the first pontiff to live permanently in the Vatican, built the Vatican Palace with the ecclesiastical tithes collected for the crusades by Gregory X.[112]

"By the twelfth century, the Roman Church was conceived of, and styled accordingly, as the true and new Imperium Romanum, while the College of Cardinals appeared as Senatus Romanus. It was in this period that the pope first was depicted in the Maiestas, that is enthroned as a world-ruler like the Lord or the emperor, whereas in former days the pope was depicted in the humble way in which saints were represented."[113] The bishop of Rome magnified himself to the level of the prince of the apostles, and set himself up as the king of the world. "The eleventh century was the high tide of the coronamenta, the crown-wearings, and festival coronations, on the part of the secular rulers. The Roman pontiff, being himself a crown-bearer by that time, did not hesitate to follow the model of emperors and kings. In Benedict's Liber Politicus we find for the first time a section unknown to any earlier ceremonial which has the rubric: 'These are the festivals on which the pope must be crowned.' There follows a list of eighteen holidays - Christmas, Easter, Pentecost, Epiphany, Ascension, the pope's anniversary, and twelve other days...."[114] "It is not only the impoverishment of the liturgical emperor worship that strikes us, but also the fact that this worship itself seems to have lost its basis in life. The image of Christ the Emperor and King began to fade away in the West and so did that of Christ the Commander...."[115]

A few writings up to the time of the Reformation reveal the high exalted image of the Roman pontiff. For instance in the Extravagantes Ioannis XXII the pontiff was referred to as "Deum nostrum papam" (our lord God the pope).[116] In a later edition this title was changed to "Dominum nostrum Papam" (our lord the Pope).[117] This high image survived even past the Reformation. A Roman church official, Lucii Ferraris, referred to the pontiff as follows:

1 Papa tantae est Dignitatis, & celsitudinis, ut non sit simplex homo, sed quafi Deus, & Dei Vicarius. [The Pope is of so great Dignity and so exalted, that he is not a mere man, but as it were God, and the Vicar of God]


3 Hinc Papa idem est ac Pater Patrum. [Hence, the Pope is likewise the Father of Fathers]


8 Papa prae excellentia suae supremae Dignitatis vocatur Episcopus Episcoporum. [The Pope by reason of the excellence of his supreme Dignity is called Bishop of Bishops]


10 Item Episcopus universalis Ecclesiae. [He is likewise Bishop of the universal Church]


12 Item Divinus Monarcha, ac Imperator Supremus, & Rex Regum, Annotat. Secundae partis ad. Decis. 2. Rotae Recentior. n.7. [He is likewise the Divine Monarch and Supreme Emperor, and King of kings]

13 Hinc Papa triplici corona coronatur tamquam Rex Coeli, & Terrae, & Infernorum. Annotat. I. ad decis. 2. par. 3. Rotae recentior. §. 45. n. 61. [Hence the Pope is crowned with a triple crown, as King of Heaven, and Earth, and Purgatory (the lower regions)].[118]

But a "... broth of abominable things is in their vessels; Which say, Stand by thyself, come not near to me; for I am holier than thou." Isaiah 65:4-5. The Council of Florence plainly stated that the Catholic Church was holier than the Jewish synagogue. What about the Jewish Temple which Jesus acknowledged as His house? Jews were oft persecuted by the church too. So the Roman pontiff did not regard the God of his fathers even though the original twelve apostles were all converted Jews. The bishop of Rome even maintains his authority is greater than Moses. Moses spoke what our Lord told him to speak - there is no greater authority except the Father's will which Jesus did. "This Moses whom they refused, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge?: the same did God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel which appeared to him in the bush." The Acts 7:35. The Roman pontiff claims no human can judge him. Through his representations he claims he has greater authority than our Lord, authority equal to that of the Father, and even calls himself Holy Father, thus, magnifying himself above all, and breaking the commandment Jesus gave us. The medieval pontiff alleged he was the highest in the world and that all princes should kiss his feet - a ceremony now largely dispensed with.

"38 But in his estate shall he honour the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honour with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things." The bishop of Rome turned from the truth, and began to honor the god of force - the enemy of our free agency - Satan. Jesus does not use force to spread the Truth of the gospel. The use of force to allegedly spread the truth is irrefutable evidence of the presence of our arch-enemy, Satan. Before it received its deadly wound, the Roman Catholic Church used force and fear everywhere it went. If it had the truth, it would not have resorted to force. Our Lord will build his kingdom on stones of truth rather than swords of death. War, death, fear, disease, pestilence, and contention have followed the Roman Church in its wake. Her bishops did not hesitate to call upon knights to assist in subduing a people. After soldiers went forth to subdue a people, the Catholic priests would follow venting the wrath of hell upon the "heathen" more than the love of Jesus our Savior. In the decade prior to 1230 bishop Albert of Riga used the assistance of a small order of knights, the Sword Brothers, to conquer Livonia (Latvia) in northern Europe. At the same time a missionary bishop used another small order of knights, the Knights of Dobrzyn, to try to convert Prussians (N. Poland). With their failure Duke Conrad called in the Teutonic Knights who had been kicked out of Hungary for trying to create their own state within a state. The Teutonic Knights absorbed the two smaller orders of knights operating in the area, the latter first. In 1234 pontiff Gregory IX granted them his protection as a papal fief. By 1250 they had established an independent state in Prussia.[119]

Books were burned and "heretics" extinguished both in the old and the new world. When the crusaders took the city of Tripoli in the aftermath of the First Crusade, one of Bertrand's priests ordered its library to be burned as containing only infidel literature. This was the richest library of the East containing the lore of Persia, Arabia, Egypt, and Greece, and employing one hundred copyists.[120] The ancient language of Babylonia has only recently been deciphered, because Darius the Mede, king of Persia, had caused his exploits to be carved in three languages, including Babylonian, on the cliffs of Media.[121] Even the Maya of the Americas had vast written records burned by the Catholic priests who came to convert what was left of them after the diseases brought ravaged their numbers. Jews were persecuted; Muslims were persecuted; and even Christians were persecuted; anyone who disagreed with the self-proclaimed infallible Roman pontiff, being the rest of the world, was proclaimed heretical and persecuted.

If Jesus desired us to convert with the sword, He would have set such an example, but when Peter smote off the ear of one Malchus coming to take Jesus, He said: "... Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword." Matthew 26:52; John 18:10. When Jesus approached the Samaritan woman by the well who marveled that He, being a Jew, asked a Samaritan for a drink, He did not address her as an infidel, and condemn her. Instead He opened her eyes to truth, and blessed her with a knowledge of truth because of her willingness to see truth. John 4. In the eyes of Jesus, none is an infidel except those who have personally known truth and rejected it, for all are God's children. Muslims have not known truth, and are our brothers even though they are led astray by the antichrist.

The Roman pontiff fills his sanctuaries with things precious to men believing that God desires it rather than a contrite and humble heart. I will not repeat a list of the riches of the Roman Church - one only has to turn the pages of a history book to glimpse a few. Churches were filled with them. Fine linens adorned the congregations, cathedrals, and clergy. More notably, however, fine and expensive things fill the papal palace. Nowhere does the gospel value these things, except as permanent fixtures of the Temple. Jesus never indicated He wished any of these things to be given to Him. Being their creator, He did not desire a possession any greater than to enjoy beauty. He was poor by example, and had those things He needed to live. He valued good deeds done for Him such as the woman who anointed Him with oil. Her kind act towards Jesus is one of the few kind acts toward Him recorded in the Scriptures for which He made a promise. "Why trouble ye the woman? for she hath wrought a good work upon me. For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always. For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her." Matthew 26:10-13. Riches of precious metals and jewels are merely tools to forward the work of the gospel and the economies of men toward the benefit of all.

"39 Thus shall he do in the most strong holds with a strange god [the strongest pockets of truth succumb], whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory: and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for gain." Being a creation of Satan, the Roman Catholic Church acknowledged this god of force through its actions. The gospel tells us we shall know the wolves by their fruit. The fruit of the Roman Catholic Church brought us the Dark Ages. It brought the endless wars of the Middle Ages, and the death of millions. It brought principles not based on gospel Truth, but fought truth in science and in the gospel. It brought love of power and wealth, and gloried in it. It brought deceitful dealings. It brought force and fear. All these are fruits of evil.

The Roman pontiff made pacts with leaders in order to gain an advantageous position or money. He divided the lands of Europe among kings - often receiving a tribute. He even divided the world among the European powers. This process began in the early fifteenth century. Portugal had been exploring the west coast of Africa, and in 1415 took Ceuta. In 1438 pontiff Eugenius IV issued a papal bull to the Portugese allowing them the rights of exploration to the south. In 1455 pontiff Nicholas V issued a bull which gave the Portugese the exclusive rights of exploration and conquest along the whole coast of Africa "all the way to the Indies [Asia]." In 1481 Sixtus IV issued a bull granting the Guinea coast of Africa to Portugal. The same year the king built a fortress there. When Columbus returned from his discovery of the Americas, the Spanish king and queen, Ferdinand and Isabella, immediately applied to the pontiff Alexander VI (Borgia) for validation of Spain's claimed rights. On June 4, 1493 Alexander issued a bull, Inter caetera, which provided in part: "We... out of the fullness of our apostolic power ... give, grant, and assign to you and your heirs and successors, Kings of Castile and Leon, all islands and mainlands found and to be found ... one hundred leagues towards the west and south... from any of the islands commonly known as the Azores and Cape Verde." The bull concluded with the usual warning of excommunication to any persons of any rank who infringed on this new right of Spain. Thus, the pontiff drew a line from the north pole to the south pole, and gave Spain everything to the west of it. King John II of Portugal felt the bull was too generous to Spain, so he approached Spain, and the two countries entered a treaty on June 7, 1494, the Treaty of Tordesillas, which moved the line of demarcation in the bull Inter caetera to 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde Islands. The treaty entreated the pontiff to accept the new terms. This was done on January 24, 1506 by pontiff Julius II, who ratified the treaty. Whereas the old line excluded Portugal from the Americas, the new line (370 leagues west) allowed Portugal to establish a bridgehead on the easternmost part of the Americas - Brazil. Thus, this day Portugese is the main language of Brazil, whereas Spanish is the predominant language of the rest of South America.

Pursuant to the authority of the papal pronouncements, Portugal went on to establish a string of forts all along the coasts of Africa, Asia, India, China, and all the way to Japan. They established a very lucrative eastern trade which the Ottoman Empire had sought to monopolize. The system of fortified strong points was largely established under the Portugese viceroy of India, Alfonso de Albuquerque, who took Goa from the sultan of Bijapur, and took Malacca in 1511. Now the gateway to the south China Sea was established. In 1557 Macao, China was established as a Portugese colony. Based on their papal bulls and decrees, the Portugese claimed a monopoly on China. By this time the Portugese were in Japan, and in 1549 the papal legate to the Indies, Francis Xavier, landed there. The Portugese monopoly was not broken until the next century by England, which spurned the papal decrees.

Similarly, the Spanish conquests of the Americas took place rapidly. In 1513 Vasco Nunez reached the Pacific Ocean, and claimed it for Spain. King Ferdinand, being cautious, had a document drawn up known as the Requisition (Requerimiento). In 1513 the king ordered this document to be read in the tongues of the native peoples to be conquered. The document gave a brief Catholic viewpoint of the history of the world, and represented to the natives that their land had been donated to the Spanish crown by the pontiff, as the regent of God on earth. It called on the natives to accept the rule of the Spanish king as a representative of the pontiff. On this basis in 1521 Hernando Cortes conquered Mexico. Shortly thereafter, Peru was reached, and in 1532 the Incas were subdued by Francisco Pizarro. Upon hearing the Requisition read to them by Fernandez de Enciso two Cenu chiefs (Columbia) commented that they could understand the existence of one God who rules the universe, but that the Roman pontiff must have been drunk when he gave their land to the Spaniards. After each conquest Spanish culture and the Catholic religion were inculcated by a religious order - the Franciscans, Dominicans, or Jesuits. However, the Spanish administrators often ignored papal bulls which recognized that the natives were not property, but were capable of being converted to Catholicism. When it came to native possessions, the bulls were essentially completely ignored or bypassed, and galleons full of native gold and riches routinely returned to Spain.

Francis I of France considered the line of demarcation promulgated by the papal bulls to be a possible affront to France. He was not able to resolve the issue with the kings of the countries. Reportedly, he demanded "to see the clause in Adam's will which excludes France from the division of the World." Accordingly, in Marseilles in 1533 he met with the pontiff, Clement VII, who interpreted the papal bulls as applying only to those places actively colonized or discovered. Clement VII granted to France the same rights with respect to North America. Hence, a race for colonization was initiated, and France hastened to colonize North America.[122]

A few papal bulls or decrees had allowed a few favored European countries to exploit the civilizations of the world. Gold taken from native peoples, or earned through monopolized trade poured into Europe. In this process the coffers of the Spanish and Portugese kings were especially enriched - thereby enriching Rome.

"40 And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over." These last verses of the prophecy mark the signs of the end time of this world as well as the decline of the political power of the papacy at the last of the 1260 years of political reign. At this time the kings of the north and south are Muslim. After the fall of the crusader states in Palestine to the Mamluk/Mameluke Egyptians eastern crusading subsided until the Muslim Ottomans began to press from Asia Minor into Europe in the late fourteenth century. At the same time the Mamluks were pressing from their Egyptian domain. In 1425 the Mamluks attacked the Catholic possession of Cyprus. In a renewed attack on Cyprus in 1426 the Egyptians took king Janus of Cypress prisoner. In 1440 the Egyptians attacked the island of Rhodes occupied by the Knights Hospitaller. The Hospitallers had built formidable fortifications on the island. The location was strategic because around 1320 Clement V had authorized the Hospitallers to enforce a naval blockade against Egypt, and sequester cargoes. This and the raid of Alexandria by Peter of Cyprus in 1365 are probably the reasons the Mamluks struck out at the West. The Mamluks attacked Rhodes again in 1444, and besieged it for forty days. At the same time the Ottomans were beginning to attack eastern Europe.

The Ottoman state began under Osman around 1300, and eventually took over the whole Turkish Empire and the Greek provinces of Asia Minor. It became the new kingdom of the north. The Ottomans were expert calvary riders. At first they had small fleets, but their naval power became frightening to the West. In 1516 the Ottomans defeated the Mamluks of Egypt near Aleppo, and captured Syria at the heart of the kingdom of the north. Within one year the Ottomans had conquered all of Egypt. Soon afterwards under Suleiman they conquered all the Muslim lands of Babylonia to the Persian Gulf including Baghdad. The Ottomans remained a significant power until World War I, when they were defeated by the Allied powers.

However, at first the European response was minimal, until the fall of Constantinople appeared to be a real threat. In 1366 Amadeus of Savoy left Venice on a successful venture to recapture Gallipoli from the Ottomans in the Hellespont of northwest Greece. In response to a 1394 invasion of the Morea in Greece, and the blockade of Constantinople by the Ottomans, the Roman pontiff and the French pontiff (in Avignon) proclaimed a crusade. Under king Sigismund of Hungary and John of Nevers (France) an army of about 10,000, and a crusader fleet suffered a crushing defeat at Nicopolis, Bulgaria on September 25, 1396. Although in 1399 the French captain, Marshal Boucicaut, succeeded in temporarily lifting the Ottoman naval blockade of Constantinople, the Ottomans continued to advance into Bulgaria. In January 1443 pontiff Eugenius IV called for a crusade against the Ottoman advance. That summer the Hungarians had some initial successes in inner Bulgaria. In 1444 a western fleet was unable to stop sultan Murad II from crossing the Bosporus in a large fleet. In August 1444 king Ladislas of Hungary and an army of 20,000 were completely defeated by Murad at Varna on the Black Sea. The king and the papal legate died. This was a huge blow to the eastern crusading effort.

In 1451 Mehmed/Mehmet II succeeded his dead father to the Ottoman throne. He proved an ambitious and capable conqueror. In order to be a major power, the Ottoman Empire needed a capitol with influence. It had set its sights on Constantinople, and in 1453 Constantinople fell to the Ottomans with an army of about 250,000 men. Constantinople became known as Istanbul. In 1458 Corinth and Athens fell. In 1480 an Ottoman fleet and troops were sent to capture the city of Otranto in south-eastern Italy. Pontiff Sixtus IV sent a papal fleet to recapture Otranto, but after doing so it returned home. By the death of Mehmed II in 1481 the Ottomans had conquered all of mainland Greece. Thus, the Ottomans had conquered the major power in Eastern Europe with a flood of manpower and ships. Bulgaria and Greece were conquered. However, the next forty years were relatively quiet in southeastern Europe. Bayezid II, the son of Mehmed II, spent his reign consolidating the infrastructure created by Mehmed II. His successor, Selim I (1512-20) turned the Ottoman power to the East fending off the Safavids in 1514, and capturing the Mamluk domains of Syria (1516) and Egypt (1517 Cairo).[123]

"41 He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown [He shall come into the glorious land. And tens of thousands shall fall, OAB]: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon." At first the bishop of Rome used the Franks to overthrow the remaining Teutonic kingdoms such as Bergundy and Lombardy. He pitted the Teutonic kingdoms against one another, and they were overcome - all became Catholic. He overthrew many kings and countries in the Middle Ages by the power of his words. He divided up the world. India, China, Africa, and the American Maya were all conquered through his efforts to convert the world.

As a result of the First Crusade a Latin kingdom and church existed in Palestine for almost 200 years. Tens of thousands of Jews were put to the sword or pushed out of the glorious land. In these latter days the Catholics again operate several churches in the glorious land. But Edom, Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon escaped. These people east of the Jordan river chiefly become Muslim. Although as of 2000 A.D. they represent the antichrist, they have not received the Roman mark of the Trinity. Of course there have been many people on both sides who sought to do right, but they did not have the complete truth. It is better not to have been given the truth than to have the truth and wilfully pervert it or ignore it. "For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them." 2 Peter 2:21. As our Lord told His apostles regarding their work and those cities in which He had performed miracles: "But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say, Even the very dust of your city, which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city. Woe unto thee, Chorazin! Woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which have been done in you, they had [would have] a great while ago repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment, than for you." Luke 10:10-14 (Matthew 11:21-2). He also told us: "And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more." Luke 12:47-48.

Although the crusaders of the First Crusade were successful in recapturing Jerusalem from the Fatamid (Shi'ite) Muslims, and in establishing crusader states in Palestine, they never made inroads in the surrounding Arab states. Egypt was attacked repeatedly, and some cities were captured, but in the end the Muslims always defeated or starved the crusaders. Thus, Edom, Moab, and Ammon escape the Roman pontiff. These peoples are descended from the days of Abraham. "...The LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates." Genesis 15:18. Abraham had a son, Ishmael, by Hagar the Egyptian, and a son, Isaac, by Sarah. The angel of the LORD told Hagar, Ishmael's seed would not be numbered for multitude which have Egyptian blood through Hagar. Genesis 16:1,10. Hagar also chose Ishmael a wife from Egypt. Genesis 21:21. Ishmael was the father of twelve princes or nations. Genesis 25:12-16. Isaac had two sons by Rebekah - Esau and Jacob. Esau and Jacob were brothers whom the LORD named Edom and Israel, respectively. Esau took a daughter of Ishmael to wife, and therefore, his progeny are descendants of Ishmael and Egypt. Genesis 28:9. Moses and the Israelites journeyed through these peoples. "And when we passed by from our brethren the children of Esau, which dwelt in Seir, through the way of the plain from Elath, and from Eziongaber, we turned and passed by the way of the wilderness of Moab." Deuteronomy 2:8. Esau was named Edom by the LORD. Genesis 25:29; 36:1. The land of Seir is the country of Edom. Genesis 32:3. "Thou shalt not abhor an Edomite; for he is thy brother: thou shalt not abhor an Egyptian; because thou was a stranger in his land. The children that are begotten of them shall enter into the congregation of the LORD in their third generation." Deuteronomy 23:7-8. The Moabites and the Ammonites are the children of Lot. Lot was Abram's (Abraham) nephew. Genesis 11:26. Lot took his two daughters out of Zoar. These two daughters got him drunk, and became with child by him. The oldest daughter called her child Moab, and the second called her son Benammi who is the father of the children of Ammon. Genesis 19. The LORD gave Ar to the Moabites for a possession. Deuteronomy 2:9. Ar is in the vicinity of the coast of Moab, which is the land the LORD gave to the Ammonites. Deuteronomy 2:18-19. They are children of God, and are brothers through Lot. "An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation... because they met you not with bread and with water in the way, when ye came forth out of Egypt; and because they hired against thee Balaam the son of Beor of Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse thee." Deuteronomy 23:3-4. Thus, all these peoples are descended from the line of Shem (Gen.11), but some mix with Egyptian blood which is of the house of Shem's brother, Ham. Egypt is the land of Ham. Psalms 78:51; 105:23. Ham was also the father of the land of Shinar through his son, Cush, and grandson, Nimrod. Ham's son, Canaan, was the father of the Canaanite tribes. Genesis 10. "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse." Malachi 4:5-6.

"42 He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and Ethiopians shall be at his steps." The reader will recall that the Nicene Council gave Alexandria, Egypt jurisdiction over Libya. The Alexandrian church eventually gained jurisdiction over the Ethiopian church as a Coptic church. In the days of the Roman Empire the Hellenistic city of Alexandria, Egypt reportedly held approximately ten percent of Egypt's population of about 8,500,000 if its suburbs were included. The walled city probably could not have held more than three hundred thousand. In industry and commerce Alexandria was first in the Empire. Its great harbors had some nine miles of wharves for its merchant fleet. It was the fashion center, and produced and sold all kinds of goods. An annual record reveals that up to 220,000 tons of grain were shipped annually from Alexandria to Constantinople. This would require 647 trips of average-size grain ships. Large quantities of grain were shipped to Rome as well. The wealth of Alexandria spilled over to the church. History reports that Cyril of Alexandria utilized generous application of eulogiae, customary gifts, to ensure ratification of the Council of Ephesus (431). Among the influential employed at court in Constantinople this Schmiergeld amounted to a half ton of gold, 117 elegant rugs, and 32 ivory chairs and stools.[124]

Despite its enormous wealth, in matters of the Church the Alexandrian "pope" (the title patriarch was apparently adopted in the fifth century in deference to the new title of Roman "pope") came to look to Rome for appeals. Arius was forced from there, and the orthodox Athanasius of Alexandria became perhaps his most vocal critic. Athanasius was supported by Rome, and during his forty-three year tenure, he sought help and protection from Rome. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, his successor, Peter II, "was obliged to seek refuge in Rome from the persecuting Arians (d. 381)." Rome also sided with Alexandria in the attempts of Constantinople and the imperial government to give Constantinople primacy. Neither Rome nor Alexandria recognized the third canon of the Council of Constantinople (second ecumenical council - 381) by which Constantinople claimed primacy.[125]

Rome generally exercised great influence over Alexandria not because it "...enjoyed a universal jurisdiction, but because it was the Church 'very great, very ancient, known by all, founded and established by the two very glorious apostles Peter and Paul' (Irenaeus, Adversus haereses, III:2), and which, as a consequence, enjoyed a 'potentior principalitas' (ibid.). In brief, there was no legal authority, but a moral one."[126] Although the early Alexandrian patriarch apparently never took an oath of allegiance to the Roman pontiff, the Roman pontiff did exercise a degree of authority over the Alexandrian see because a custom began for all ecclesiastical appeals to be decided by Rome. Further, Alexandria followed the Roman canonical law.

In the opening years of Athanasius' episcopate, the Melitians proved to be a thorn in his side, and there are indications that his attempts at using traditional means to curb their activities proved fruitless. Over time, his methods became increasingly brutal. Beatings, confiscations, and imprisonments became the order of the day, but these sanctions came back to haunt him later in the accusations of his enemies. Significantly, however, Athanasius' illustrious successors all followed his lead and offered violence to their perceived ecclesiastical enemies: Theophilus with the Tall brothers and their associates, Cyril with the Novations and the Nestorians, Dioscorus with the family of Cyril, Peter Mongus with the Acepheloi. Even so mild a patriarch as John the Almsgiver employed a corps of disciplinary officials (ekklesiekdikoi) to enforce his authority and punish those who violated the canons - with beatings if necessary.[127]

The Arian patriarchs, Gregory and George, may have been even more forceful in reprisal against the orthodox.

A great schism occurred in the Egyptian church after the Council of Chalcedon (451), which proclaimed Jesus Christ had two natures and deposed the Egyptian pope, Dioscorus. This result was quite unpopular with a majority of the Egyptian people. Generally, those of Greek descent, which were concentrated in Alexandria, were willing to accept the decision of the council. These became known as Melchites or the church of the king. This was the church officially recognized by Rome and the eastern emperor, and essentially comprised most of the richest churches of Alexandria. The remaining church members became known as the Coptic Church, and elected their own patriarch or pope. About 482 the emperor Zeno banished the Alexandrian patriarch, John Talaia, who sought refuge in pontiff Simplicius. Simplicius tried to get the patriarch reinstated. The reader will recall that emperor Justinian ecclesiastically united his empire with Rome. Justinian "restored the Catholic succession (538-539) in the person of the Abbot Paul. Unfortunately, the new patriarch gave some grievous offence to the Emperor, whereupon he was deposed, and Zoilus succeeded him in 541."[128] Around 543 A.D. the emperor Justinian ordered the Coptic churches to be unestablished and disendowed. All the revenue from the ancient endowments, equivalent to about 80,000 English pounds per year (compared to 1897), was ordered by the state to be paid to the patriarch in Alexandria, thus making the state church even richer.[129] This was the state of things through the time of the Muslim conquest of Egypt. The Coptic Church became a poor church although it retained a majority of the church members. The Alexandrian Patriarch, Eulogius (580-607), exchanged correspondence with the pontiff, Gregory "the Great," concerning the provision of Italian timber for a shipbuilding program. The patriarchate thus built its own small fleet of ships. Reportedly, in the early seventh century the Alexandrian patriarch was one of the wealthiest men in the empire. Upon his ascension in 609/610 John the Almsgiver found 8,000 pounds of gold in the church treasury. He remarked "My revenues from Christ-loving persons almost exceed human calculation."[130]

During the establishment of the Latin kingdom in Greece (the eastern Roman empire of Byzantium) in the thirteenth century the Roman pontiff gained preeminence over the orthodox see of Alexandria through the Latin capitol at Constantinople, and the Alexandrian patriarch sent a representative to the great synod of Innocent III, the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215. This council granted Alexandria the third level of primacy, second to Constantinople, but the Egyptian pontiff had to take an oath of obedience to the Roman pontiff. In a letter from the Alexandrian patriarch, Nicholas I, to the Roman pontiff, Honorius, he acknowledged the supremacy of Rome. Nicholas wrote (around 1225): "To the Most Reverend Father and Lord, by Divine Grace, Chief Pontiff of the Holy Roman Church, and Universal Bishop... [then he lists the trials of the church members under the Muslims]... Have pity, therefore, on us, our Lord and spiritual Father! As the Saints, before the advent of CHRIST, longed for their redemptions and liberation from our SAVIOUR, so we your children expect the coming of the Emperor."[131] Under the Egyptian Mamluk regime the Alexandrian church began to suffer. In this confusion in 1310 the Roman pontiff nominated a Latin priest to the see of Alexandria. A Dominican named Giles, a native of Ferrara and prior patriarch of Grado, was elected to the see of Alexandria. Thereafter, a succession of Latin patriarchs for the see of Alexandria was apparently kept up by the papacy, although they did not necessarily sit in Alexandria. For example, one was sent to Ethiopia as a missionary. The author, Sollerius, however, starts the list of Latin patriarchs with S. Athanasius in 1219 through 1547.

After Peter of Cyprus looted and destroyed Alexandria in 1365 with about 10,000 men and 100 ships, shiploads of wealth were carried away. So much was loaded onto the ships that the crusaders began throwing goods overboard to lighten the vessels. Quantities of spices were left on the shores. However, the government gold escaped to Cairo. Setton does not tell us how the papal legate distributed this enormous wealth. After this the Muslims made the Alexandrian churches pay for damages the crusaders had caused. The old walled city was even abandoned. Alexandria was in the hands of the Muslims, and current knowledge of the Alexandrian church of the time is extremely scanty. We do know that the city was a skeleton of its previous self.[132]

As the church began to arise out of the ashes of its domination under the Mamluk and Ottoman regimes, however, a new presence arose with it. Around 1675 Jesuit priests settled a mission in Cairo, and in upper Egypt the Franciscans appeared. These made little headway. According to a local story Catholicism made virtually no headway in Egypt until a French consul-general suggested to Muhammad Ali that the Coptic patriarch should offer ecclesiastical allegiance to Rome. His Coptic secretary, Mu'allin Ghali, offered himself as a proselyting example to other Copts with some permanent results. In 1895 the Catholics elevated Cyril Macarius as papal nuncio to the Copts, and the Coptic liturgy was adopted by the Catholics with interpolations regarding the Roman pontiff. The Copts thundered back that these overtures by the Catholics were a pretentious ploy.[133] Presently a large Roman Catholic Church operates in Alexandria. There are also about eight Roman Catholic churches in Cairo. The Melchite patriarch became an "ecumenical judge," and leads a sparse church. There are also Melchites united to Rome, which are essentially natives of Egypt and Syria. They have been governed by a bishop as vicar of the patriarchate. The Catholic Copts united to Rome are lead by a patriarch in Alexandria - a title granted by pontiff Leo XIII in June 1899 to Mgr. Macaire. These now number about 200,000.[134]

Since the time of Nicaea, the Libyans and Ethiopians (within two centuries) were part of the see of Alexandria, although their churches had become Coptic, and hence, did not pay homage to Rome. Their Coptic churches have been following in the train of the Egyptian Coptic church - they have begun to show allegiance to Rome. Ethiopia's first exposure to Christianity was probably through a man-servant of Candace, queen of Ethiopia, who Philip baptized when the man was returning from Jerusalem in his chariot. Acts 8:26-40. Around 1518 a Portugese Catholic mission was sent to Ethiopia, and stayed for about six years. A later missionary sent from Rome, Oviedo, was told the Ethiopian king was well disposed towards the Portugese, and would give them land, but that their church had been under the Copts, and they felt they owed no allegiance to Rome. In response Oviedo placed a spiritual ban over the kingdom on February 5, 1559. The first Catholic convert appears to have been won by a mission arriving in 1603. The king's brother, Ras Sela Chrestos, was converted. Other nobles or chiefs followed him. Edicts began to be passed compelling certain Catholic conditions or customs. The first set conditions of Catholic obeisance in order to hold public offices, and prohibited promulgation of the ancient doctrine. A second prescribed the death penalty for whoever did not profess the two natures of Christ. A third compelled all subjects to become Roman Catholics. After a bloody civil war initiated by the king's son-in-law, another edict was passed forbidding the observance of the Sabbath on Saturday. The king converted to Catholicism, and submitted to Rome on February 11, 1626. Another son-in-law started a rebellion put down with great slaughter. Finally, the old religion was restored by edict in 1632. The Catholics cannot proclaim innocence. The emperor would have listened to their counsel. The fact is several uprisings were put down by force, and much native blood was again shed in the name of Catholic progress. As of 1904 there were two Vicariates of Abyssinia (Ethiopia) with approximately 22,000 Catholic members.[135]

"44 But tidings out of the east [Ottoman Muslim invasions] and out of the north [Protestant revolt] shall trouble him: therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many." After Selim I (1512-20) captured the Mamluk domains of Syria (1516) and Egypt (1517) the Ottoman power appeared to be a new threat. Pontiff Leo X wrote Cardinals Wolsey and Campeggio on August 20, 1518 that where there had been two "'most ample empires'" in the East, now there was only one - the Ottoman Empire. He noted Greece was under Ottoman control, "'and now [the sultan], inflated by this victory, as we have heard, is preparing a great armada in the East for an attack, as many people suspect, upon Christian territories since he has no other enemies left whom he can assail by sea....'" The pontiff sought to gather "'some sort of confederation... to last for five years.'"[136] However, sultan Selim I died on September 22, 1520 at a time when the plague raged in Istanbul. In 1520 his son, Suleiman/Soleiman "the Magnificent," acceded to the Ottoman throne on which he vigorously ruled for forty-six years. He was thought to be a peaceful young man, and the plans for a crusade faded.

Suleiman immediately turned the Ottoman forces back to the West, and his reign brought Ottoman power to its peak. On July 7, 1521 he took Shabats (Sabac), and slaughtered its garrison. Next he made about twenty attacks on the major city of Belgrade, Hungary, the capitol of the Serbians, which surrendered in August, 1521. The next year Louis II of Hungary asked the papacy for assistance. During the last half of 1522 Soleiman lay siege to the Hospitallers who had fortified Rhodes in the southeast mouth of the Aegean Sea. The fortresses were considered almost impregnable. They had multiple zones of defense. The Muslims made massive assaults, and were repeatedly repelled. After five months and after almost 100,000 Turkish lives were spent in the assault through war casualties and disease, however, the Hospitallers capitulated, and this strategic location became Ottoman. On December 21, 1522 pontiff Hadrian VI wrote Alfonso d'Este of Ferrara regarding his concern for the Catholic republic. He called for every resource to be used against the Turkish threat.[137] In 1526 Suleiman defeated and killed the king of Hungary, Louis II, in the battle of Mohacs.

Europe was filled with fresh alarms. It was becoming clear that Suleiman desired to dominate the Mediterranean, and he was knocking on the eastern doors of the Holy Roman Empire. This new tiding from the east prompted the Roman pontiff to call for a new crusade. In the 1526 Treaty of Madrid, Charles V of Germany and king Francis of France expressed a desire for a general crusade. With an army of about 120,000 men Suleiman took Budapest, the capitol of Hungary, in 1529. Most of Hungary was now part of the Ottoman Empire. Suleiman then besieged Vienna, Austria, but there was turned away by German power and the approach of the winter of 1529. On February 2, 1530 a new crusade was proclaimed. Charles V was crowned as emperor. He in turn gave Tripolis, Africa, and the island of Malta to the Hospitallers on March 23, 1530. In October 1530 heavy rains flooded the Tiber River, and many houses in Rome were ruined. On May 5, 1531 Clement VII issued the bull, Existimavimus haud futurum, to record that the Turks were preparing for another invasion the following summer with an even more powerful army. An attack of Italy was possible. He stated he had authorized the conversion of church vessels and jewels into money for the purpose of defense. He said thousands had been taken captive by the Turks. In 1532, Suleiman's army of about 200,000 unsuccessfully attempted to siege Guens in the imperial buffer east of the Holy Roman empire. Again the besieged held out. During Suleiman's retreat sallies from the arms of Charles V made an impression upon Suleiman. In 1535 Charles led a crusade to Africa.

In December 1536 the pontiff commissioned nine cardinals to study the issue of Italian defense against the Turks - they recommended a double tithe and a hearth tax. On January 11, 1537 cardinal Denonville wrote that pontiff Paul III and the Curia Romana were thinking of abandoning Rome in the face of the Turkish threat. He related that the pontiff was hoping to raise four to five hundred thousand crowns by imposing double tithes on the clergy throughout Italy, and a hearth tax of one crown (escu) upon each household in the papal states. "They were troublous times, and no one knew it better than the lords of the trade in Venice. On 10 February, 1537, the [Venetian] Senate wrote Marc' Antonio Contarini, who had just arrived in Rome as the new Venetian ambassador, that they planned a large increase of their naval forces, 'as we observe that all the other princes in the world are doing.' They had planned to arm fifty galleys; now they were going to arm another fifty." The Senate told the ambassador to ask Paul III to impose a tithe to raise an additional 100,000 ducats to prepare the fleet to be paid by clergy in Venetian lands. He was also to request a state subsidy of like amount.[138] That year a new crusade league was formed comprised of Venice and the papacy. It was joined in 1538 by the Holy Roman Empire (Charles V) and Spain. Plans called for some 50,000 land troops with the pontiff to arm thirty-six galleys, the emperor to arm eighty-two galleys, and Venice to arm eighty-two galleys. On August 11, 1538 and September 27, 1538 the league fleet attacked the Turkish fortress at Preveza, but the league dissolved after being defeated both times. In the mean time the Turkish army had moved out of Greece, and on September 16, 1558 they occupied the capitol of Moldavia, Suceava, with an army of about 240,000 and 100,000 horse. In 1541 Transylvania became an Ottoman protectorate. In 1552 the Turks took some twenty-five Hungarian strongholds.[139]

In 1565 the Hospitallers of Malta successfully resisted a determined siege by the Ottomans. In 1566 the Ottomans attacked the Grecian islands of Chios and Andros, which were controlled by Venice. In 1570 a new Holy League was formed comprised of the papacy, Spain and Venice. The Ottomans landed on Cyprus (Venetian) and took Nicosia. One of the big Catholic victories was the naval battle of Lepanto, Greece in October 1571 in which about 280 Ottoman ships (galleys and galliots), and up to 120,000 Ottoman men were routed by a Holy League fleet of Venetian, Spanish, Genoese, and papal ships with about 80,000 fighting men. A good number of the western ships were armed with canon. Most of the Ottoman fleet was captured or destroyed. Blood poured from the scuppers to stain the water. This battle was a major setback for the Ottoman power, which essentially turned away from western exploits, and soon began a slow decline in power.[140]

Probably the main reason the Catholic Church seemed slow in responding to the Ottoman advance was because at the same time there were also tidings from the north. The peoples of Germany and northern Europe began to rise up against the Roman Church. This was seen as a greater threat than the Muslims. So, indeed, the bishop of Rome went forth with great fury to destroy. In 1420 to 1431 the Teutonic Germans had answered the call to persecute the Hussites of Czechoslovakia (Slavs). Now it was the Germans themselves, directly to the north of Rome, who adopted the spirit of reform. The advent of the printing press made the Bible available to the populations in their own languages. In the decade 1510-1520 Luther revolted against the use of indulgences by the Church. He had seen and heard enough. He cared not for the attitude the sale of indulgences brought such as that reflected in the couplet: "As the coin in the coffer rings, the soul from purgatory springs." After he posted his ninety-five theses in 1517 the protestant reformation was born in Germany. The more he sought to reform the Church, the more force with which the Church sought to repress him. Luther did not seek to start a new religion. If the Church had allowed it, he would have preferred to make a few changes from within. He wished to reject the Church's emphasis on works in salvation in favor of his doctrine of salvation by grace. Yet Scripture tells us we will be judged according to our works. He rejected Copernicus' heliocentric (sun-centered) universe for a geocentric one (earth-centered) because the Bible reads Joshua commanded the sun rather than the earth to stand still. The pontiff at the time was more open to the idea of Copernicus than Luther was.

Luther's intemperance developed from an idea that although a soft answer turns away wrath, an axe was necessary to cut the oak of the papacy. He never did divorce himself from many medieval notions the absolute power of the Church had fostered. For instance Luther quoted the Old Testament in condoning slavery. Although Jesus proclaimed that for this cause does a man leave his parents - to join with a woman that the two may become one - Luther retained the notion that copulation was sinful even in marriage, but that "God covers the sin." Luther proclaimed he would have advised God to cause men to procreate by fashioning them out of clay like He did Adam. He almost seems to contradict himself in maintaining "'Take women from their housewifery, and they are good for nothing,'" while also saying "'The greatest gift of God to man is a pious, kindly, God-fearing, home-loving wife.'" At first Luther did see that truth should prevail with learning - "'We should vanquish heretics with books, not with burning.'" Yet, he quickly became intolerant of other viewpoints such as those of the so-called pernicious anabaptists and Zwinglians, and later had their books banned. He favored compulsion in Protestant worship. He also later advised governments to put heretics to death.[141] Being raised as a Catholic, he finally adopted their rationale that Deuteronomy 17:6-17 condoned the death of heretics - even whole cities. He did not understand that in the Mosaic law animal sacrifice was made as an atonement for violations of the law, which remitted the temporal punishment. Nor did he understand that Jesus did away with the temporal punishments of the Mosaic law, which were a semblance of the spiritual punishment remitted by the atonement of Jesus Christ. Else when the Jews sought to stone the adulterous woman according to the Mosaic law (Leviticus 20:10,27), why did Jesus tell them "he that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her?" Why did Jesus not condemn her? John 8:7-11. Why did Jesus command Peter to forgive all sins? Jesus was the first and last sacrifice under the Mosaic law for atonement of the sins of this world, which bought us atonement with God. For His name is Endless and Eternal.

Change came about not because Luther dragged society to his point of view, but because society was ripe for change. The people had grown weary of the repressive feudal system in which the majority were bound as serfs in drudgery to their lords. The spirit of freedom caught fire in this atmosphere. The European kings and feudal system had modeled themselves after the Roman law of totalitarian authority. The battles, including the papal battles, were fought over control of the right to absolute authority. The word of the king came to outweigh the word of the courts, and the people had no say in their governments. Even in early sixteenth century England, the king could persecute parliament members who did not conform. The young Thomas More (1504) fell prey to king Henry who briefly jailed and heavily fined Thomas' father after Thomas argued too successfully against a proposed measure of the king. The Bible had been interpreted so as to support this system. The vassal was to be dutifully subservient to his lord in all things, and bear all things for him. Everything in life, including religion and tithing was compulsory. There was little or no room for men to learn by making their own choices. When they were able to read and were told God gave them choice, very powerful human forces were unleashed.

At the same time Luther was leading changes in Germany, Ulrich Zwingli was adopting reformist views of his own which he brought home to Switzerland. In 1517 he was preaching reliance on the Bible. He was influenced by the writings of Huss and Luther. On January 25, 1523 the local Council of Zurich heard Zwingli's defense of sixty-seven theses, and bade the clergy to teach only what they could establish by Scripture. Zwingli was not so readily received in the other Catholic cantons of Switzerland. Rather, these formed a Catholic League against Zurich. They then also formed an alliance with Austria, where Archduke Ferdinand surely would have liked to reestablish Hapsburg power in Switzerland. Zurich missionaries were captured and executed. Zurich then armed itself. In May 1529 another Protestant missionary from Zurich was burned. War was declared with the League, but after the two sides met a treaty was entered in which it was agreed religious differences were not to be settled by arms. In the short interlude of peace Zwingli met Luther, but Luther maintained a stout distance on theological grounds, having kept many Catholic views. In May 1531 Zurich tried to compel the Catholic cantons to allow Protestant missionaries, and a conflict escalated until reaching armed conflict between 8,000 Catholics and 1,500 Protestants on October 11, 1531. Zwingli was killed. Luther's inability to sever himself from many Catholic views is evident in his 1532 charge to Duke Albrecht of Prussia not to allow any Zwinglian in his territory under pain of everlasting damnation. Although Protestantism then dwindled in Switzerland, it quickly continued in Germany until about half of Germany was Lutheran.[142]

At this same time the term Protestants was coined by the Catholics. On April 25, 1529 the Lutherans signed a "Protest" in which they refused to recognize a decree of the imperial government which required toleration of Catholic services but banned Lutheran services in Catholic states. The Catholics called these persons Protestants. In 1531 Suleiman, the Muslim general, was pressuring the east border of Germany. The Catholics had formed a League in Germany, and the Protestant answer was the Schmalkaldic League. The emperor, Charles, did not believe it a propitious time to enter a religious civil war, so he set aside the Augsburg decree in April 1531, and asked the Protestants to defend Germany against the Turks. In 1540 a papal nuncio wrote that unless the pontiff intervened in a decisive manner "'the whole of Germany will fall a prey to Protestantism.'" In 1545 Suleiman was in a war in Persia, and gave a five year truce to the Germans. Pontiff Paul III promised the German Emperor, Charles V, the sum of 1,100,000 ducats and 12,000 infantry with 500 horse to turn his full force against the so-called heretics. The Protestants tended to flout imperial authority, and the Protestants caricatured the emperor - some even called him Son of Satan. The pontiff offered him a rich chance to make all Germany one religion again - he accepted. The emperor began to gather his forces. The pontiff excommunicated all who resisted Charles, while granting indulgences to all who assisted him in the so-called holy war. The Protestant princes mustered about 57,000 men, but these fell into disarray even though John of Saxony brilliantly defended the emperor's attack on Ernestine Saxony.

But then a noticeable turn occurred. Perhaps fearing Charles would have too much success which would threaten the papal states of Italy, the pontiff recalled the papal troops in January 1547. John had some additional victories, but Charles finally defeated, and captured him. But then the pontiff charged Charles with killing the natural son of the pontiff, Pierluigi Farnese. The Protestants regained muster, and formed a new majority against him. The emperor conceded temporary consent to ecclesiastical marriage. The pontiff fumed at the presumption of the emperor. The Protestants formed an alliance with Henry II of France. While Henry attacked the southwest corner of Germany, a Protestant army of 30,000 men attacked the emperor who had disbanded his troops. On August 2, 1552 the emperor entered a treaty which granted freedom of worship forever unless the next diet reached an acceptable settlement. The Diet of Augsburg, February-September 1555, reached an agreement in accordance with an idea of Luther - each prince would decide what religion to adopt in his territory, and dissenters would be ejected to another territory. This was the effective end of the Holy Roman Empire.[143]

The Protestant fervor spread to France, England and the Netherlands. In 1523 Jean Leclerc was arrested in France for placing a placard which called the pontiff the Antichrist. By order of the Parlement of Paris he was branded on the forehead (1524). He then moved to Metz where he smashed some religious images. Now his nose was torn away, his hand cut off, his nipples plucked out with pincers, his head bound with a red-hot iron, and he was burned alive (1526). In 1527 several others were condemned to the stake for denying that the virgin Mary or saints had intercessory power. Under king Francis of France, printers who printed anti-papal pronouncements were arrested. Then suspects were arrested. In 1535 six Protestants were burned by slowly lowering and raising them over a fire. In the six months prior to May 5, 1535 twenty-four Protestants were burned in France. Even the pontiff, Paul III, reproved the king for the extreme measures. In 1536 in France John Calvin had published his major theological work which would be a groundwork for a major Protestant movement in Geneva and later in France. Calvin's movement was more austere and no more tolerant than Catholicism. Cardinal de Tournon persuaded king Francis to sign a decree (Jan. 1, 1545) which proscribed the death penalty for all Waldenses found guilty of heresy. The officers of the French Parlement interpreted the decree for themselves and quickly sent soldiers who killed about 3,000, burned villages, and imprisoned others.[144]

Scandinavia was next. In Denmark the Church owned half the land. The nobility were exempt from taxes because they paid for the wars. The clergy were exempt. The Church received a tenth of all nonecclesiastical income or produce. It exacted a fee for every child born, every couple married, every body interred, and all property inherited through its probate courts. King Frederick I allowed Protestantism into the country telling Catholics he had no lordship over the souls of men. After Frederick's death the two sides eventually came to armed conflict. The Protestants won under Frederick's son, Christian III, and in 1536 all bishops were arrested and held until they promised to abide by the Protestant government.[145]

In the two decades after which a translation of the New Testament and the writings of Luther began to circulate in Scotland, a number of persons were put to death. Patrick Hamilton stood his ground with James Beaton, the Archbishop of St. Andrews, and was burned in 1528. Two more men were burned in 1534. Four were hanged in 1544. In 1546 Cardinal David Beaton had George Wishart tried for heresy; he was strangled and burned, but his pupil John Knox, lived on and spread Protestant fervor. Archbishop Hamilton ordered the April 1558 burning of Walter Milne, an aged priest who left the Church and married. The Reformists refused to tolerate any more persecutions. In 1559 after a confrontation between a youth and a priest, crowds rose up to destroy three monasteries. In 1560, Mary Stuart, queen of the Scots, signed the Treaty of Edinburgh, and the reform church, the Congregation of Jesus Christ, won almost a bloodless victory. That year Knox and his aides wrote a Confession of Faith which formed the basis of the Presbyterian Church.[146]

In 1546 according to the Venetian ambassador at Charles' court nearly all Anabaptists of the Netherlands, approximately 30,000, perished by the hands of the imported inquisition. Another, however, estimated the number to be 1,000. A remnant stayed - probably most survivors fled. Then persecuted French Huguenots brought in the doctrines of Calvin.[147] In August 1566 a storm broke in the Netherlands. Everywhere churches, convents, and monasteries were sacked and their contents destroyed by Protestants.

In Spain the Inquisition remained in force. Between 1520 and 1550 at least twenty persons were executed and many more imprisoned for their religious beliefs. In Seville a canon of the cathedral, Juan Gil, was imprisoned for one year for preaching against image worship, prayer to the saints, and the efficacy of good works toward earning salvation. Between 1550 and 1600 A.D., some 200 people were executed for their beliefs. Burning at the stake was reserved for those who would not recant, while even those willing to recant were oft times executed by beheading or another expeditious means.[148]

In Italy reform was more within the Church than of the Church. For the most part the Church did not reform its doctrines, but sought to answer criticisms from without and within by increasing the discipline of the clergy, monks and nuns. Pontiff Paul III appointed three Cardinals, Piccolomini, Sanseverino, and Cesi, in 1534 to propose a program of moral reform. In 1536 he held a reform conference in Rome to which he invited Contarini, Caraffa, Sadoleto, Cortese, Aleander, Pole, Tommaso Badia, and bishop Federigo Fregose. At the opening Sadoleto boldly pronounced that the Roman pontiffs had been the prime source of moral decay through their crimes, sins, and greed. In March 1537 this commission presented its "Counsel of the Appointed Cardinals on Reforming the Church" (Consilium dilectorum cardinalium de emendanda Ecclesia), which ascribed the abuses in the Church governance to "'reckless exaggeration of the papal authority by unscrupulous canonists.'" The report even held that some pontiffs "'had assumed the right to sell ecclesiastical offices,' and this simony had spread venality and corruption so widely through the Church that now the great organization was on the verge of destruction...." It added "throughout the world, almost all the shepherds have deserted their flocks and entrusted them to hirelings." Paul III sent a copy of the report to every cardinal. Paul III did try to institute some changes, but each suggestion brought objections. For instance he ordered some eighty archbishops and bishops staying in Rome back to their sees. One of the objections was that some of the bishops might be driven to Protestantism. He called the first session of the Council of Trent. The pontificate of Julius III showed no external change - several victims were burned in Rome. The new Inquisition ordered a trial of any clergy who would not preach against Protestantism.

The next pontiff, Paul IV (1555), was the reformist cardinal Caraffa, who ordered the gates of Rome closed. Vagrant monks were arrested. Church officials were ordered back to their posts. Absentee officials of monasteries were not to be supported with their revenues. He reduced revenues of various offices including the pontiff. His Bull of July 14, 1555 ordered all Jews of Rome into a Jewish quarter. They were required to sell all their real estate, and could not acquire any. Their physicians could not treat Catholics. They were forbidden to trade in food items. The sale of Jewish real estate in the papal states realized approximately one-fifth of its value. Paul IV had been on the reform panel of the new Inquisition, and now increased its rigor. In 1557 the Inquisition produced a long list of books to be burned including all those of Erasmus. In 1559 Paul published the first papal index of banned books, the Index auctorum et librorum prohibitorum, containing sixty-one printers under the ban. No books were to be read without the imprimatur, "let it be printed." Enforcement was through the Inquisition. In 1556 in Ancona, depending on the source, twelve to twenty-four persons were burned while forty-two others by paying considerable sums succeeded in having their sentence changed to life imprisonment in galleys. In 1558 heretics were sent from Naples to Rome to be burnt at the stake when refusing to recant. Whole families in Italy fled to Germany or Geneva. The jurisdiction of the Inquisition was extended beyond cases of alleged heresy to blasphemy, polygamy, procuring, rape, simony, sodomy, violation of fasting regulations, and others. According to the 1558 report of a Portugese ambassador a painter who designed a crucifix which appeared improper to the inquisitors was tortured. In his History of the Popes, the Catholic author, Pastor, concluded: "The envious and the calumniator were kept hard at work snapping up suspicious words fallen from the lips of men who had been firm pillars of the Church against the innovators, and in bringing groundless accusations of heresy against them. It thus came to accusations being made and proceedings being taken against bishops and even Cardinals, which are as incomprehensible as they were baseless. An actual reign of terror began, which filled all Rome with fear."[149] Rome celebrated the death of Paul with four days of rioting. The buildings of the Inquisition were burned with Inquisition records, and its prisoners freed.[150] But the Inquisition carried on for over another century torturing and killing Protestants, Jews, and Indians. In its art the Church had used motifs of horned-demons and hell to scare people from leaving the Church and being damned to hell. Now a bit of hell came to earth with the Son of Perdition raining force and fear on the people unless they verbally assented to all his doctrines. Jesus taught truth and love attract people to the gospel.

The last great religious war was the Thirty-Years War (1618-48) in Germany. It was begun under the pontificate of Paul V, and at various times involved Britain, Spain, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Sweden. Under cardinal Richelieu even France joined the war on the Protestant side. The war actually began in Bohemia where an ardent Catholic was elected king-designate. Protestant nobles perceived that attempts were being made to centralize the government, and to Catholicize the land. In protest they started the war by hurling two imperial commissioners and a secretary from a window of the palace in Prague in 1618. The revolt was ended with the defeat of the Protestants in November 1620, and Protestantism in Bohemia was suppressed. The pontiff began granting subsidies in 1620 to the Catholic League and the emperor, Ferdinand II, to assist in the war against the Protestants. The next pontiff, Gregory XV, did likewise, but in addition provided large subsidies to the king of Poland to support the continuing war against the Ottoman Empire of the Turks. This war left Germany starving, depopulated and in ruins, but freedom was won from the papacy. Estimates place the population loss of Germany up to forty percent in the country and up to thirty-three percent in the cities. In 1648 the hostilities were ended with the Peace of Westphalia (the treaties of Munster and Osnabruck). It was at this time that the Protestant states of the empire were declared free of papal jurisdiction. The pontiff objected to the loss of his supranational religious authority, but was ignored by the Catholic and Protestant parties to the treaty. Now there could be no doubt that the Holy Roman Empire had come to an end.[151]

In 1645 the Turks struck the Venetian possession of Crete which involved Venice in a twenty-four year war. In 1684 the Venetians joined with the Poles and Austrians in a holy league under Innocent XI. The Russians entered in 1686. Starting in 1685 the Venetians, with league assistance, entered a campaign to recapture the Morea of Greece from the Turks. The venture captured all the strongholds but that of Malvasia, which finally surrendered in 1690.[152]

I have not tried to paint the most horrible picture I can. I merely present a few facts about the period, which are by no means a complete record. I do not know how many thousands died in these later eastern and northern crusade wars and in the Inquisition during and after the Protestant Reformation, but I know the number meets the scriptural requirement of "many."

I don't believe there is a greater paradox in this story than the belief of the Middle Ages that by taking the sword one was taking the cross of Jesus. Nothing could be further from the truth. The sword was used as an instrument of Satan spreading hatred among fellow men. Reliance on it is like putting our Savior back upon the cross. The sword of our Savior is the spirit of His Word - the Truth by which we are set free. Jesus came to save the lost - not to put them to the sword.

"And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." Isaiah 2:2-4. "And the loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low: and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. And the idols he shall utterly abolish." Isaiah 2:17-8.

"45 And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace [Catholic cathedrals] between the seas in the glorious holy mountain [Utah Lake and the Great Salt Lake]; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him." Note the differentiation from the glorious land of previous verses - the United States is the country which will bring forth the fruits of His kingdom despite it's being the second beast of Revelation 13 which causes the image of the beast to speak.

"Daniel 12:1-2 And at that time shall Michael [revealed as the archangel Adam who holds the keys of the Ancient of days of Daniel 7:13] stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book [of life]. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt."

"When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand;) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! But pray ye that your flight be not in winter, neither on the Sabbath day: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. Then if any man shall say to unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before. Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together. Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily, I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left." Matthew 24:15-40.

"For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim: Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD their God, and David their king; and shall fear the LORD and his goodness in the latter days." Hosea 3:4-5. "HEAR the word of the LORD, ye children of Israel: for the LORD hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land." Hosea 4:1. "Ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves. For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land [the U.S.] they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them...I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them." Isaiah 61: 6-8. Moses also told the Hebrews likewise: "And the LORD shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen, whither the LORD shall lead you. And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men's hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell [showing the LORD does!]. But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul [with open-heartedness and open-mindedness]. When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice." Deuteronomy 4: 27-30. "Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand." Daniel 12:10.

Chapter 9

When shall all these things be? "... It shall be for a time, times, and a half [the 1260 years the Roman pontiff reigns]; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished." Daniel 12:7. "And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end." Daniel 12:9. We are given another timeline in Revelation 6 - 8. The seven seals represent time periods. Jesus is the "Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David." Revelation 5:5. He is the Lamb of Revelation 5 & 6 with seven horns and seven eyes who "hath prevailed to open the book and to loose the seven seals thereof." Revelation 5:5,6. The first seal starts at about 4000 B.C., which is also about the beginning of recorded history. Each of the first four seals are represented by horses of white, red, black, and pale. The signs or plagues of the seven seals are from the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb. In Exodus 7-12 is the story of the captivity of the children of Israel and the signs God sends to Egypt. These are the spiritual aspect of the song of Moses. The literal aspect of the song of Moses is the song of deliverance sung by Moses and the children of Israel in Exodus 15:1-19.

"And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer." Revelation 6:1-2. This is Adam's dispensation. In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet. Thou shalt speak all that I command thee: and Aaron thy brother shall speak unto Pharaoh, that he send the children of Israel out of his land." Exodus 7:1-2. "And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, When Pharaoh shall speak unto you, saying, Shew a miracle for you: then thou shalt say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and cast it before Pharaoh, and it shall become a serpent. And Moses and Aaron went in unto Pharaoh, and they did so as the LORD had commanded: and Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh, and before his servants, and it became a serpent. Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers: now the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. For they cast down every man his rod, and they became serpents: but Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods. And he hardened Pharaoh's heart, that he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had said." Exodus 7:8-13.

"And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see. And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword." Revelation 6:3-4. In the song of Moses: "Get thee unto Pharaoh in the morning; lo, he goeth out unto the water; and thou shalt stand by the river's brink against he come; and the rod which was turned to a serpent shalt thou take in thine hand. And thou shalt say unto him, The LORD God of the Hebrews hath sent me unto thee, saying, Let my people go, that they may serve me in the wilderness: and, behold, hitherto thou wouldest not hear." Exodus 7:15-16. "And the LORD spake unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and stretch out thine hand upon the waters of Egypt, upon their streams, upon their rivers, and upon their ponds, and upon all their pools of water, that they may become blood; and that there may be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood, and in vessels of stone. And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. And the fish that was in the river died; and the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink of the water of the river; and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt. And the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments: and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, neither did he hearken unto them; as the LORD had said. And Pharaoh turned and went into his house, neither did he set heart to this also. And all the Egyptians digged round about the river for water to drink; for they could not drink of the water of the river. And the seven days were fulfilled, after that the LORD had smitten the river." Exodus 7:19-25.

"And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine." Revelation 6:5-6. In the song of Moses: "And the LORD spake unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch forth thine hand with thy rod over the streams, over the rivers, and over the ponds, and cause frogs to come up upon the land of Egypt. And Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt; and the frogs came up, and covered the land of Egypt. And the magicians did so with their enchantments, and brought up frogs upon the land of Egypt. Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, Intreat the LORD, that he may take away the frogs from me, and from my people; and I will let the people go, that they may do sacrifice unto the LORD. And Moses said unto Pharaoh, Glory over me: when shall I intreat for thee, and for thy servants, and for thy people, to destroy the frogs from thee and thy houses, that they may remain in the river only? And he said, To morrow. And he said, Be it according to thy word: that thou mayest know that there is none like unto the LORD our God. And the frogs shall depart from thee, and from thy houses, and from thy servants, and from thy people; they shall remain in the river only. And Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh: and Moses cried unto the LORD because of the frogs which he had brought against Pharaoh. And the LORD did according to the word of Moses; and the frogs died out of the houses, out of the villages, and out of the fields. And they gathered them together upon heaps: and the land stank. But when Pharaoh saw that there was respite, he hardened his heart, and hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had said." Exodus 8:5-15.

"And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see. And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth." Revelation 6:7-8. The rider of death represents the millennia of the four horns which scatter Israel before Jesus. These four horns experience death, and hell follows their pagan practices. In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch out thy rod, and smite the dust of the land, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt. And they did so; for Aaron stretched out his hand with his rod, and smote the dust of the earth, and it became lice in man, and in beast; all the dust of the land became lice throughout all the land of Egypt. And the magicians did so with their enchantments to bring forth lice, but they could not: so there were lice upon man, and upon beast. Then the magicians said unto Pharaoh, This is the finger of God: and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had said." Exodus 8:16-19.

Thus, the fifth seal is Jesus' dispensation (and Peter). "...I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony that they held." Revelation 6:9. "And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were [latter day persecution of saints], should be fulfilled." Revelation 6:11. "Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." 2 Timothy 3:12. "Yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service." John 16:2 [see also Luke 21:10-16]. In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh; lo, he cometh forth to the water; and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Let my people go, that they may serve me. Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are. And I will sever in that day the land of Goshen, in which my people dwell, that no swarms of flies shall be there; to the end thou mayest know that I am the LORD in the midst of the earth. And I will put a division between my people and thy people: to morrow shall this sign be. And the LORD did so; and there came a grievous swarm of flies into the house of Pharaoh, and into his servants houses, and into all the land of Egypt: the land was corrupted by reason of the swarm of flies. And Pharaoh called for Moses and for Aaron, and said, Go ye, sacrifice to your God in the land. And Moses said, It is not meet so to do; for we shall sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians to the LORD our God: lo, shall we sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians before their eyes, and will they not stone us? We will go three days journey into the wilderness, and sacrifice to the LORD our God, as he shall command us. And Pharaoh said, I will let you go, that ye may sacrifice to the LORD your God in the wilderness; only ye shall not go very far away: intreat for me. And Moses said, Behold, I go out from thee, and I will intreat the LORD that the swarms of flies may depart from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people, to morrow: but let not Pharaoh deal deceitfully any more in not letting the people go to sacrifice to the LORD. And Moses went out from Pharaoh, and intreated the LORD. And the LORD did according to the word of Moses; and he removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people; there remained not one. And Pharaoh hardened his heart at this time also, neither would he let the people go." Exodus 8:20-32.

The symbology of the sixth seal is not readily apparent. "...Lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair [the light of Christ disappears in the dark ages], and the moon became as blood [much bloodletting in the name of Christendom]; And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken in a mighty wind [like the stars of heaven that fall under the persecution of Antiochus Epiphanes, many persons will wilt under the persecution they experience; note that the inquisition started in the twelfth century]. And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together [there is no word from heaven until the heavens open at the end of the sixth seal]; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places [this is a time of formation of new churches and nations - even the mountain of the Catholic Church moved temporarily to France]. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men,... and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens [pits of evil] and in the rocks [false words where seeds don't grow] of the mountains [seek refuge in false churches]. And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the lamb: for the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?" Revelation 6:12-17. (In the end these "mountains were not found" Rev. 16:20).

During the First Crusade just before the crusaders entered the plain on which Jerusalem sits in June 1099, there appeared a lunar eclipse, and the moon was turned to blood. Believing this to be a bad omen, many were disquieted at first, but were reassured that it was just God's way of foretelling the utter destruction of the Infidel. Then occurred the already related story of the besieging of Jerusalem, and the slaughter of its inhabitants. The First Crusade was the beginning of a bloody millennium under the auspices of the Roman pontiff and Islam. Millions of European lives were spent in numerous crusades and in the Inquisition in the effort to spread or defend Catholicism - not counting Jewish, Muslim, and Indian lives. But this was not all. In 1114 A.D., just prior to the set up of the abomination of desolation in 1122, a famine visited Palestine caused by the devastation of war and the visitation of Arabian locusts. Antioch, Edessa, Jerusalem, and every city suffered. But that was not all - beginning on the Feast of St. Lawrence (August 10, 1114) a series of great earthquakes destroyed several important cities, especially Cilicia. In Aleppo the citadel was destroyed. Towers and churches fell in Antioch. The towers of Edessa fell. A November quake destroyed part of Mamistra. Many towns were destroyed in whole or in part, including city walls. It had significant aftershocks for five months. The people fell into great dread, and abandoned their dwellings. The quakes were felt in Muslim lands as well. About 100 miles north of Antioch a November quake destroyed the walls and houses of the city of Maresh. On the Euphrates river the city of Balis was the scene of an earthquake (June 7, 1114 - May 26, 1115).[1]

In the middle of the millennium the Reformation came - about 1520 A.D. Men hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, fall on us. Men literally ran for cover from the wrath of the Roman Catholic Church, desperately looking for a way to truly worship God. They made their own churches. Satanic accusations and fear of the end ran amok. An example of the extremism is found in one of Luther's followers - Thomas Muntzer. He took the language of Revelation and other Biblical passages, and worked the peasants into a frenzy in which they literally invited the world to fall on them. Luther banished him, and he was eventually able to gain his own following. He invited his followers to view themselves as the elect who should slaughter the ungodly, and thereby form the kingdom of the saints. He fomented a peasant's war with language such as: "'Now is the time... If you be only three wholly committed unto God, you need not fear one hundred thousand. On! On! On! Spare not! Pity not the godless when they cry. Remember the command of God to Moses to destroy utterly and show no mercy.'" Luther was not content to leave the outcome to God, but looked to each prince to "exceed his duty in offering terms to the mad peasants. If they decline, then he must quickly grasp the sword." Luther wrote a tract which concluded: "'Thus, rebellion brings with it a land full of murders and bloodshed, makes widows and orphans, and turns everything upside down like a great disaster. Therefore, let everyone who can, smite, slay, and stab, secretly or openly, remembering that nothing can be more poisonous, hurtful, or devilish than a rebel [was not he a rebel against the Roman Church?]. It is just as when one must kill a mad dog; if you don't strike him, he will strike you, and the whole land with you.'" Some princes began to gather their forces. Muntzer's followers sent word that they only sought the righteousness of God, and wished to avoid bloodshed. However, the princes wished the peasants to deliver Muntzer who told his followers that David slew Goliath. A rainbow appeared in the sky, and the peasant's rallied. The princes captured six hundred, and slew five thousand. Muntzer was caught, tortured and beheaded. Then the princes cleaned up the countryside. At the same time Luther's tract was published. Although he tried to counter it in another tract, the peasants never forgot his call to "'smite, slay, and stab.'" More peasants were slaughtered in other battles - possibly up to 100,000.[>2] Most peasants turned from Lutheranism, and it became a religion of the bourgeois.

In the song of Moses: "THEN the LORD said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh, and tell him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. For if thou refuse to let them go, and wilt hold them still, Behold, the hand of the LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there shall be a very grievous murrain. And the LORD shall sever between the cattle of Israel and the cattle of Egypt: and there shall nothing die of all that is the children's of Israel. And the LORD appointed a set time, saying, To morrow the LORD shall do this thing in the land. And the LORD did that thing on the morrow, and all the cattle of Egypt died: but of the cattle of the children of Israel died not one. And Pharaoh sent, and, behold, there was not one of the cattle of the Israelites dead. And the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people go." Exodus 9:1-7.

"And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel." Revelation 7:1-4. Thus, after the turmoil of the Reformation, when people took shelter in new, but false churches, the gospel is restored. This is near the end of this sixth seal (about 1830 A.D.). The angel ascending from the east has been revealed as Elias the preparer who is also John the Baptist (Matt. 11:14 & 3:3) or one holding the keys of his power. Although John said he was not Elias (John 1:21-23), he was the one spoken of by Isaiah in Isaiah 40:3, and held the title of Elias through priesthood keys. He spoke in the spirit and power of Elias (Elijah). Luke 1:17. John the Baptist as well as Elijah have appeared to a latter day prophet, Joseph Smith, who brought the gospel and the power of the keys received from the eastern United States to the West. The gospel is restored in its truth. "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD." Malachi 4:5. Those who were involved in the murder of Joseph Smith were smitten.

In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses and unto Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace, and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heaven in the sight of Pharaoh. And it shall become small dust in all the land of Egypt, and shall be a boil breaking forth with blains upon man, and upon beast, throughout all the land of Egypt. And they took ashes of the furnace, and stood before Pharaoh; and Moses sprinkled it up toward heaven; and it became a boil breaking forth with blains upon man, and upon beast. And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils; for the boil was upon the magicians, and upon all the Egyptians. And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had spoken unto Moses." Exodus 9:8-12.

The seventh seal represents the Sabbath or the day of cleansing. The seventh day is Saturday, recognized by Hebrews as the Sabbath. Our Lord's day when he will reign on the earth is now the day after. He rose the first day after the Sabbath. Thus, Christians worship on Sunday. The seventh and first days are set aside for an holy convocation in the feast of unleavened bread. Exodus 12:14-17. This is when He shall smite the nations with the two-edged sword of His mouth. One edge is truth, and the other edge is justice or responsibility for they are intertwined. "In that day the LORD with his sore and great and strong sword shall punish leviathan the piercing serpent, even leviathan that crooked serpent; and he shall slay the dragon that is in the sea." Isaiah 27:1. Such is the Day of Atonement. Jesus atoned for us, but we were not one with Him. But the time of resurrection is at hand when we can be one with Him.

When the seventh seal is opened there is silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. Revelation 8:1. Peter tells us " not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." 2 Peter 3:8. Thus, 1/2 heavenly hour is 20.8 years, and the time frame included would be about twenty-one years. At the start of the seventh seal an angel servant with a golden censer walketh the seven steps to the altar, and stands at the altar before the throne; "and there was given unto him much incense [that he die not: Lev. 16:13], that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand. And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth [Lev. 16 & Numbers 16:46]." Revelation 8:3-5. At the specified time the silence will be broken: "and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake." Revelation 8:5.

In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth. For now I will stretch out my hand, that I may smite thee and thy people with pestilence; and thou shalt be cut off from the earth. And in very deed for this cause have I raised thee up, for to show in thee my power; and that my name may be declared throughout all the earth. As yet exaltest thou thyself against my people, that thou wilt not let them go? Behold, to morrow about this time I will cause it to rain a very grievous hail, such as hath not been in Egypt since the foundation thereof even until now. Send therefore now, and gather thy cattle, and all that thou hast in the field; for upon every man and beast which shall be found in the field, and shall not be brought home, the hail shall come down upon them, and they shall die. He that feared the word of the LORD among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his cattle flee into the houses: And he that regarded not the word of the LORD left his servants and his cattle in the field." Exodus 9:13-21.

"And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them." Revelation 14:13. [Leviticus 16 ("For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned without the camp. Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate." Hebrews 13:11-12); Exodus 29:36-39: "And thou shalt offer every day a bullock for a sin offering for atonement: and thou shalt cleanse the altar, when thou hast made an atonement for it, and thou shalt anoint it, to sanctify it.... Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning; and the other lamb thou shalt offer at even." (there is apostacy inbetween; remember, Jesus sent the disciples out as lambs)]. Also 1 Kings 18:36-38: "And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah [Elias] the prophet came near, and said, LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word. Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the LORD God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again. Then the fire of the LORD fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench." Note that the devotee of Baal and namesake of the great and abominable whore of Revelation, Jezebel, slew the prophets of the Lord (1 Kings 18:13) while Jezebel's priestly devotees of Baal who had prayed in vain to their man-made god were taken and slain at the brook Kishon in the Lord's day of justice. In Babylon is found the blood of the prophets and saints (Rev. 18:24) including Peter and Paul. These latter days are the days of the evening sacrifice. This is the counsel of the Lord "to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." Revelation 3:18. For the trial of our faith with fire is much more precious than gold that perishes. 1 Peter 1:7. Herein is the secret of the little book or mission of John by the keys of Elias or the spirit and power of Elias the preparer: take it and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. Revelation 10:9-10. Remember, even Jesus, the greatest among us, prayed not to shrink from the bitter cup. See Matthew 26:42; John 18:11.

"And as it was in the days of Noe [Noah], so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot's wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it." Luke 17:26-33.

Here, Daniel speaks again in the dream of the strong and high tree by the king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, in Daniel 4.

The tree that thou sawest, which grew, and was strong, whose height reached unto heaven, and the sight thereof to all the earth; Whose leaves were fair, and the fruit thereof much, and in it was meat for all; under which the beasts of the field dwelt, and upon whose branches the fowls of the heaven had their habitation: It is thou, O king, that art grown and become strong: for thy greatness is grown, and reacheth unto heaven, and thy dominion to the end of the earth. And whereas the king saw a watcher and an holy one coming down from heaven, and saying, Hew the tree down, and destroy it; yet leave the stump of the roots thereof in the earth, even with a band of iron and brass, in the tender grass of the field; and let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let his portion be with the beasts of the field, till seven times pass over him; This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the most High, which is come upon my lord the king: That they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field [and a beast's heart was given unto him, Daniel 4:16], and they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and they shall wet thee with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. And whereas they commanded to leave the stump of the tree roots; thy kingdom shall be sure unto thee, after that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule. Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by shewing mercy to the poor; if it may be a lengthening of thy tranquility. Daniel 4:20-7.

This dream is "... to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men." Daniel 4:17.

"And the seven angels which had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound." Revelation 8:6. In Revelation the first four trumpets sound during the period of the reign of the image of the beast. When the first trumpet sounds comes hail and fire mingled with blood. A third part of the trees are burnt up. All green grass is burnt up. Revelation 8:7. In the song of Moses: "And Moses stretched forth his rod toward heaven: and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along the ground; and the LORD rained hail upon the land of Egypt. So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. And the hail smote throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail smote every herb of the field, and brake every tree of the field. Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, was there no hail." Exodus 9:23-26.

"And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and a third part of the sea became blood." Revelation 8:8. A great church will burn with fire, and be cast into the sea of peoples. We can know this is a church because when our Lord speaks of His holy mountain, he is speaking of His church. In the song of Moses: "And Pharaoh sent, and called for Moses and Aaron...." Exodus 9:27. "And the flax and the barley was smitten: for the barley was in the ear, and the flax was bolled. But the wheat and the rie were not smitten: for they were not grown up." Exodus 9:31-32.

"And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters; And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter." Revelation 8:10-11. This is a great religious leader who leads away a third of men. This is a time of trial.

And in the latter time of their kingdom [Greece/Persia or Greece, Egypt, and the Middle East], when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power [through evil spirits]; and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace [a religious leader] shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand. And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days. Daniel 8:23-26.

In the song of Moses: "And the Lord said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh: for I have hardened his heart, and the heart of his servants, that I might shew these my signs before him: And that thou mayest tell in the ears of thy son, and of thy son's son, what things I have wrought in Egypt, and my signs which I have done among them; that ye may know how that I am the LORD. And Moses and Aaron came in unto Pharaoh, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, How long wilt thou refuse to humble thyself before me? Let my people go, that they may serve me. Else, if thou refuse to let my people go, behold, to morrow will I bring the locusts into thy coast: And they shall cover the face of the earth, that one cannot be able to see the earth: and they shall eat the residue of that which is escaped, which remaineth unto you from the hail, and shall eat every tree which groweth for you out of the field: And they shall fill thy houses, and the houses of all thy servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians; which neither thy fathers, nor thy fathers' fathers have seen, since the day they were upon the earth unto this day. And he turned himself, and went out from Pharaoh. And Pharaoh's servants said unto him, How long shall this man be a snare unto us? let the men go, that they may serve the LORD their God: knowest thou not yet that Egypt is destroyed?" Exodus 10:1-7.

"And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars." Revelation 8:12. This represents a third - those who seek to hold the rod. Through Zechariah our Lord prophesied: "...smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn my hand upon the little ones [after the Lord our shepherd is crucified the Lord turns to the little ones, his lambs - not those who raise themselves up]. And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God." Zechariah 13:7-9. For the refiner takes the rough ore of the earth, and carefully refines it in the fire until he can see his reflection in the pure, precious metal. In the song of Moses: "And Moses and Aaron were brought again unto Pharaoh: and he said unto them, Go, serve the LORD your God: but who are they that shall go? And Moses said, We will go with our young and with our old, with our sons and with our daughters, with our flocks and with our herds will we go; for we must hold a feast unto the LORD. And he said unto them, Let the LORD be so with you, as I will let you go, and your little ones: look to it; for evil is before you." Exodus 10:8-10. "Not so: go now ye that are men and serve the LORD; for that ye did desire. And they were driven out from Pharaoh's presence." Exodus 10:11.

Then an angel flies through heaven announcing the last three angels to sound with three woes by saying "...Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!" Revelation 8:13.

The tables are turned when the fifth angel sounds: "And he opened the bottomless pit." Revelation 9:2. Locusts arise from the smoke of the pit which are commanded to hurt only men "which have not the seal of God in their foreheads." Revelation 9:4. In the song of Moses we find: "And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch out thy hand over the land of Egypt for the locusts, that they may come up upon the land of Egypt, and eat every herb of the land, even all that the hail hath left." Exodus 10:12. "And the locusts went up over all the land of Egypt, and rested in all the coasts of Egypt: very grievous were they; before them there were no such locusts as they, neither after them shall be such. For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they did eat every herb of the land, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left: and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt." Exodus 10:14-15.

John the Revelator tells us what shall be when this fifth trumpet sounds and the sanctuary is cleansed in the 22nd century [remember Daniel places this at 2132 AD]:

and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit; And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months [5 X 30 = 150 days or 150 years]: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man. And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them. And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. And they had hair as the hair of women [adorned themselves as a church], and their teeth were as the teeth of lions [the lion representing Babylon]. And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months. And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek Tongue hath his name Apollyon [Satan]. Revelation 9:2-11.

"And it shall come to pass, that he who fleeth from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that cometh up out of the midst of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake." Isaiah 24:18. One must stand by truth and flow against fear. When Peter allowed his faith to waiver, and did begin to fear the wind, he began to sink into the sea, and cried out to our Lord. Matthew 14:29-30. Regarding the teeth of lions we find parallel symbology in the Old Testament. Joel tells us: "For a nation is come upon my land, strong, and without number, whose teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he hath the cheek teeth of a great lion. Joel 1: 6. Here again we see the lion symbol of Babylonia or Chaldea also reflected in Revelation 13:2 as the beast's mouth of a lion. Judges tells us: "And the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the children of the east lay along in the valley like grasshoppers [locusts] for multitude; and their camels were without number, as the sand by the sea side for multitude." Judges 7:12. Due to the 150 year time requirement this period begins at 2132 A.D., when Daniel tells us the sanctuary will be cleansed, and last till 2282 A.D. "One woe is past." Revelation 9:12.

Revelation continues with the second woe:

And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates [peoples of Babylonia]. And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year [391 days + = 2395 A.D.]. And the number of the army of the horsemen [horsemen always come from the north] were two hundred thousand thousand [200 million man army or a great percentage of the nation of Islam]: and I heard the number of them. And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone. By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone [lies, deception, and hate], which issued out of their mouths. For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt. And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk. Revelation 9: 13-20.

In the song of Moses: "And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch out thy hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt. And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days: They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days: but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings." Exodus 10:21-23.

"But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets." Revelation 10:7. This angel stands on the sea and the earth, and has been revealed as one holding the keys of Adam, returning to finish the mystery from the little book. The remaining people shall know the power of the Lord. They will be given one last chance to harken unto His word. At the last of the second woe two great prophets shall prophesy concerning the very last days and the fullness of the gospel. "AND there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months." Revelation 11:1-2. In the song of Moses: "And Pharaoh called unto Moses, and said, Go ye, serve the LORD; only let your flocks and your herds be stayed: let your little ones also go with you. And Moses said, Thou must give us also sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice unto the LORD our God. Our cattle also shall go with us; there shall not an hoof be left behind; for thereof must we take to serve the LORD our God; and we know not with what we must serve the LORD, until we come thither." Exodus 10:24-26.

Zechariah tells us of Jesus' two anointed ones: "Then answered I, and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof? And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves? [They know they will be sacrificed; they are His two stones]. And he answered me and said, knowest thou not what these be? And I said, no, my lord. Then said he, these are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth." Zechariah 4:11-14.

In the law of Revelation: "And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. [This contradicts and casts doubt on those who say the days of the prophets are over and there shall be no more scripture.] These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth." "And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt [being forbidden and akin to spiritual name of Rome, which is Babylon], where also our Lord was crucified. And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half [same period Jesus' body was lifeless]... And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them." Revelation 11:3-12. In this day the holiest things of the Holy of Holies will be revealed, but the great day of at-one-ment is not yet fulfilled. In the song of Moses: "But the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, and he would not let them go." Exodus 10:27. Then "the second woe is past; and behold, the third woe cometh quickly." Revelation 11:14.

"And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned. And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come... And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail." Revelation 11:15-19. In the song of Moses: "And Pharaoh said unto him, Get thee from me, take heed to thyself, see my face no more; for in that day thou seest my face thou shalt die. And Moses said, Thou hast spoken well, I will see thy face again no more." Exodus 10:28-29. "So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen." Matthew 20:16. "Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days. [2457 A.D.] Daniel 12:12.

In the song of Moses: " And the LORD said unto Moses, Yet will I bring one plague more upon Pharaoh, and upon Egypt; afterwards he will let you go hence: when he shall let you go, he shall surely thrust you out hence altogether. Speak now in the ears of the people, and let every man borrow of his neighbor, and every woman of her neighbor, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold. And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians. Moreover the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, in the sight of Pharaoh's servants, and in the sight of the people. And Moses said, Thus saith the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt: And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts." Exodus 11:1-5. "Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying...they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house." Exodus 12:3. "Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it." Exodus 12:5-7. The LORD sayeth: "For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD. And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt. And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever. Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel. And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you. And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this self-same day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generation by an ordinance forever." Exodus 12:12-7.

"And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut to pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it." "In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them. And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn." Zechariah 12: 3, 8-10.

"And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints." Revelation 15:2-3. In Revelation 15 & 16 seven angels clothed in linen pour out seven plagues on the earth and sea. A noisome and grievous sore falls upon all those with the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. Every living soul in the sea dies as in the blood of a dead man. Of these I say no more.

"And I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and thy lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished." Revelation 20:4-5.

"And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea." Revelation 20:7-8 (see also Ezekiel 38). This is a battle for heaven like unto the battle in which Satan was cast out of heaven with his followers before the world was, and after the man child was born. Revelation 12:7-9. Then this world shall cease to be. "And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel." Matthew 19:28. John saith "and I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea." Revelation 21:1. Isaiah saith: "For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind." Isaiah 65:17. The earth shall be reborn in its spiritual and celestial glory as a new heaven in which Jesus shall reign for His kingdom is not of this world. But a new world is created, and there is a new beginning. The branches of His holy office and calling as the Son shall bear fruit. He shall receive the fullness of His inheritance as our God and Father. All power, wisdom, strength, honor, glory and, blessings be to Him. "The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints." Ephesians 1:18. "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. Isaiah 9:6-7. "For thy maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called." Isaiah 54:5. So it is, and so shall it be, worlds without end. "Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame." Revelation 16:15. Amen.

"But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death." Revelation 21:8.

Chapter 10

Even after reading all these things, there may be those who do not believe that the beasts, women and other symbols of Revelation are about churches. They are wrong. Revelation ends with the testimony of our Savior that these things are in the churches. Revelation 22:16. "And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come." Revelation 22:17. Come to Jesus Christ our Savior, and learn of Him. I tell you the words of this book are true, and there is a true church for the people to build up our Lord's kingdom. It is my testimony that the only true church on the earth is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints formed in 1830 A.D. Note Alvin Smith, Joseph Smith Jr.'s oldest brother, and the first latter day saint to be confirmed to reach the celestial kingdom in vision, was born on February 11, 1798 at the same time General Berthier was capturing the bishop of Rome February 9-15, 1798. The 1260 year political power of the beast came to an end, and the woman with twelve stars which flew into the wilderness for 1260 days/years to be nourished from the face of the serpent was assaulted with a flood [the sea] from the serpent's mouth. Revelation 12. Some have heard of the Church, and say that it is a cult. Don't cults:
1. Have persons at the top who manipulate the masses to enrich and empower themselves?
2. Use fear and force tactics?
I know a very meek person who was crucified as being a cult leader - Jesus.

Here is a quote from one who experienced the crushing forces of the Roman Church first-hand, Albert Houtin:

Disillusion marks the life of all priests, unless they succeed by dint of self-suggestion in becoming what the Church terms a saint. Their imaginations have been fired by pious mothers who direct their good sons towards the Sanctuary, they enter the seminary like the Magi travelling in search of the King of the Jews, following the Star. There, in the Seminary, the process of suggestion goes on unrelentingly, magnifying before their eyes the priesthood as the source of honour and glory, the splendour of life. But, except for the sermons they hear, what a prosaic initiation! Instead of the knowledge of God they have been dreaming of, they receive a crabbed scholastic philosophy; and when their intelligence keenly longs for food and development, it is pent up and crushed down. Still the young people persevere, persistent and full of confidence, and their superiors are careful to represent their aversion and weariness as trials intended by God. The enlistment having taken place, the young levites try to live "supernaturally," till a day comes when they have to acknowledge that they lack even those natural resources which human reason supplies when it has not been weakened; when the bishop, the authentic official authority in the Roman Catholic Church, causes them to realize - if they had not guessed it for themselves, and if their love of truth has not already been killed in their bosom by the training they have undergone - what the Church means by "Catholic Truth."[1]

The truth feeds the soul. Although some feel the responsibility which comes with the truth weighs too much, their soul is fed until they make this decision. However, the intricacies of Catholic canon law do not feed the soul, nor do its man-made doctrines. God's law in the Scriptures feed the soul, because it is Truth. But "if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries." Hebrews 10:26-7. Wherefore, repent, and be saved.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS) has no paid ministry nor apostles nor prophets who enrich themselves at the expense of others. Such a thing is against biblical law. "Feed the flock of God... not for filthy lucre." 1 Peter 5:2. Obviously the opposite is true of the Catholic Church and its derivations. Also Micah 3:9-11: Hear this...that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity...the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money." The Church of Jesus Christ LDS has always been the object of persecution - not the persecutors. Early members were robbed, killed and raped by mobs in Missouri and Illinois - in a country founded on the basis of religious freedom (note: each of the 4 kingdoms of Daniel 2, the 4 beasts of Daniel 7, and the parts of the beasts of Revelation have persecuted His church!). Even LDS children were shot and killed in the Haun's Mill massacre. The Missouri governor issued an "extermination" order against the "Mormons" in October 1839 allowing church members to be shot on sight. "And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away in the flood [sea of the world]." Revelation 12:15. In the face of severe persecution in Nauvoo, Illinois, the church moved to the semi-arid desert of Utah. "And the earth [wilderness] helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth." Revelation 12:16. The federal government sent troops to Utah to subdue the Church of Jesus Christ, and all church property was seized without legal basis until the federal government finally had to concede to its relinquishment.

The use of the term "Mormons" by non-members is in itself a fear tactic designed to label the church as a cult having nothing to do with Jesus Christ, even though many members came to accept the term without enmity including Joseph Smith. However, it reduced the truth to something to which an "ism" could be attached in the eyes of non-members (Mormonism). 3 Nephi 27:8. Mosiah 26:18. Fear and force - tools of Satan. I am not "a Mormon." I am a disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ - a Christian. 1 Peter 4:16. Alma 46:15. "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love." 1 John 4:18. The fear and force used by the Catholic Church, and the riches collected by the bishop of Rome will not be discussed again, but it led to the dark ages until persons grasped bits of truth here and there and revolted against the Roman Catholic Church. It's "Catholic Truth" has not and will never lead us to that day when every man shall call his fellow man brother. As Paul told the Romans almost 2000 years ago: "What then? Are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God." Romans 3:9-11. "...The wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand." Daniel 12:10.

The Truth has always been persecuted, and always will be, because Satan hates Truth. "Remember the word I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you." John 15:20. Do not misunderstand - the presence of persecution in and of itself is not a guarantee that the persecuted possess more truth for Satan loves for men to fight one another, and increase their hate. But if one is pursuing the ideals of Truth, love, and peace, and is yet persecuted for them; and made to fear, it is of Satan. If you run from such fear, the LORD promises you will fall into the pit. Having been given truth, do not fear, for the LORD will bring your fears upon you. See Isaiah 66:4. The Protestants were persecuted because they were beginning to topple the castle of lies Satan had managed to build for over 1000 years. This did not mean they possessed all the truth, but they found totally different truths in the scriptures from what the Roman Church had been teaching them. The Roman clergy had been made the possessors of the Scriptures which were meant by God to be a light to all mankind - not just to the Catholic clergy.

Some say: but I have heard all those "things" about the "Mormon" church. Assuming there is a true church on the planet which meets every jot and tittle of God' s law, which church would the devil want to spread the most lies about? The true church or the false church(es)? So yes you can expect there will be lots of lies, fears, and doubts to overcome. I did. I was once a Baptist. I've attended a Presbyterian Church, a Unitarian church, the Unity church, the Seventh-day Adventist church, the Church of Christian Science, the Church of God, and a Methodist church. I've attended an Episcopalian school, a Jesuit (Catholic) school, and a traditionally Methodist School, Duke University (where I also studied Oriental religions), and a Baptist school (Mercer). I've attended about three meetings of a Buddhist sect and several meetings of the B'hai faith. None possess all the truths of the gospel, except the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Jesus has told us He "overcame" (be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. John 16:33) and that is what he has led us to do. Overcome what? Force, fear, and lies - all tools of the devil. For I too feared that the devil might pull a double entendre' and scare me into his false church with the false prophet. Then I prayed, and my prayers were answered. I now know the beast is the Roman Church with whom the false prophet (bishop of Rome) is associated. Revelation 16:13 and Revelation 19:20. Although I had to search the answers out, through prayer and seeking a clean heart He continued to provide, even though I knew not where I went. I thank not only the spirit of Jesus and the prophets, but also those who have committed countless hours of research used by myself herein.

Which church do you believe Jesus will return to? Your church among the hundreds of denominations of "Christian" churches or the church which meets every jot and tittle of His law? "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism." "Till we all come in the unity of faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ." Ephesians 4:4-5,13-15. However, there are many harlots. Does this sound familiar? "Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas[Peter]; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided?" 1Corinthians 1:12-13. "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment." 1Corinthians 1:10. In the early church men were ordained by apostles, elders, and officers of the church, and were given decrees to keep (Acts 16:4). Does your church have prophets and apostles (Ephesians 2:20; Acts 15:2), seventy (Luke 10:1 Lord appointed other 70; Num 11:16 Lord requested Moses appoint 70 elders), high priests (Hebrews 5), elders (Acts 14:23; 15:2), bishops (1 Timothy 3:1-10 which says bishops should be married - obviously Catholic bishops are not), the Melchisidec priesthood (Hebrews 7:11), the Aaronic priesthood (Hebrews 7:11; 2 Kings 23:4 the priests of the second order), the law of complete sacrifice, the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands (Acts 8: 17), washing and anointing (John 13: 8 if I wash thee not thou hast no part with me; 2 Cor. 1: 21-22 and hath anointed us, is God; who hath also sealed us; Exodus 29:4-7), and the power of healing through anointing with oil and blessing (Mark 6:13)? If not, I respectfully submit your church does not meet every jot and tittle of God's law and will be one of the harlots swept aside with the mother of harlots.

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are not better than anyone else. We are not immune from the temptings of Satan, but are subject daily to he and his minions. It is a daily struggle and learning process for every single being on this earth - and is our reason for being here. However, Satan will not have power over the pure in heart. We continue to learn His word. "And Jesus answered him [Satan], saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God." Luke 4:4. Adam did eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil by which he came to know evil in order that he could love the good. It was then for him to partake of the tree of life. Jesus promised the Jews that He would next give His gospel to the Gentiles to be preached to the whole world, and He has fulfilled that promise. It is only by the power of the true priesthood that we are able to overcome and defeat Satan, which gift is given us in Jesus Christ and His high priest atonement.

Chapter 11

In writing these things I merely seek to do what our Lord wishes us to do. "Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." 1 Timothy 4:14-16. "Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine. His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant..." Matthew 25:24-7.

The things I write are part inspiration and part perspiration. I am not the first to see Rome as BABYLON THE GREAT (the reader can even look it up in the footnotes of the Oxford Annotated Bible; former Catholic priests are especially counted in this category), but none have shown how she is the MOTHER OF HARLOTS because the time was not yet. If one wishes to know the truth, it is in the gospel, rather than all the man-made doctrines handed down by the Roman Catholic Church.

I have had many people say to me that they need some proof that God exists. The words herein are as much proof as I can give. They evidence One divine Word in the Old Testament, New Testament, and all Scriptures which fit into one beautiful divine law. A mosaic with One Author - the Father of our Savior Jesus, whom the Father sent as His Word. The LORD has established His word in multiple prophets who lived hundreds of years apart. Only one divine Author could do this. This is my witness that our Savior Jesus Christ liveth, who was sent as the elect Only Begotten Son by our Heavenly Father. He has set His mighty hand the second time to call to His sheep and gather Israel. Lest any declare me as a prophet, I say the prophets have spoken so that the earth may know the power of God. There is one prophet appointed to speak to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints - I am not he, and I do not seek to do so. Nor do I prophecy, and do not need to do so to know these things. Like every humble follower I seek understanding of the scriptures in the light of the Spirit and the prophets. I am only a sinning man who prays and thinks a lot. I committed great sin in the eyes of our Lord, and did repent and return to His fold. I reversed my courses. I continue to make mistakes, learn, and grow. I pray at that great day I will not be counted as a goat, which eats of everything the world places in front of it, but as a lamb. Matthew 25:32-3. I do not know who will hearken unto the words herein, but I do know they will love truth, and will seek the truth in love above all. I testify with a sure heart convicted by the Spirit of God that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints represents the last and final chapter of our Lord's true work here on the earth before He returns to rule. I testify that the words herein are true - I testify of a surety that the beast of Rome is the Vatican, and the bishop of Rome is the son of perdition who rejected and corrupted the truth; that the second beast of Revelation 13 is the United States which does bring about the image of the beast; and that Mohammed is a prophesied antichrist. Many prayers were answered in knowing these things. I know with a sure heart that God will perform every jot and tittle of His law. He causeth everything to pass that He writeth. Whether you accept it or not at this time, you are seeking the truth. Pray, go to church, read the Scriptures which are His light by which the Holy Spirit convicts us, and lift up no man but the Father and Jesus who is our God and Redeemer.

I pray for those in the coming days of great tribulation and temptation, that they will humble themselves before our God, and seek His face for they will be blessed. "And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith?" Mark 4:39-40.

If you desire the truth above all else, the Holy Spirit will manifest it unto you. "...Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." Philippians 2:12-13. Mormon 9:27. You need not depend on my word. You can read all the things I have - I spent much time seeking them out through prayer and research, because I love truth. If you come with a pure heart, Jesus will offer you the salvation you seek in His time and His way. Pray to our Lord who giveth liberally to all who seek. "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me." John 10:27.

Your loving brother in Jesus Christ, I am

Brent Creighton © Copyright 2000


I. Some common lies about the LDS church from the Evangel Vol XLV, No.4 of the Southern Baptist convention.

1. Evangel p. 2. Joseph Smith could not be a true prophet because he "predicted the temple of the church would be built in Independence, Missouri, within his lifetime. (D & C 84:2-5)."

By a neat slight of hand the devil has worked a lie. D & C 84:4 reads "Verily this is the word of the Lord, that the city New Jerusalem shall be built by the gathering of the saints, beginning at this place, even the place of the temple, which temple shall be reared in this generation ." Prophetically a generation is not a human lifetime. If so, Baptists would make Jesus a liar for He proclaimed: "Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass away, till all these things be fulfilled. [He will return in the clouds]." Matthew 24:34. Further, spiritually, the seven days of the creation are called "The generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created." Genesis 2:4. [Read this way Genesis gives a concise synopsis of the creation of the solar system and the earth.]

2.Evangel p.5. Lie - Joseph Smith couldn't be a true prophet because he didn't believe the book of Mormon.

Truth - Although the Roman pontiff's claim of infallibility is only doctrinal, he also claims he can be judged by no man, and his word is beyond reproach. Joseph Smith recorded that he was rebuked/corrected no less than three times in Doctrine and Covenants(see D&C 3:5-15, 24:2, 93:47). Why would a false prophet admit to being rebuked? Only the true and humble do. I will not touch on each point of this article but the author seems to say if it is not found in the book of Mormon, it can't be a teaching of Joseph Smith even though the Church of Jesus Christ LDS recognizes at least three other books of scripture. For instance point 8 of the article is that the book of Mormon does not teach baptism for the dead. But it is found in the Bible: "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead not rise at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?" 1 Corinthians 15:29.

Point 10 says "The Book of Mormon never mentions either the Aaronic or Melchisidec priesthood. You will find this in Gospel Principles, p. 73."

The Baptist who knows his gospel will also find it in the Bible! (See Hebrews 7: 11). Also contrary to the author's assertions, you can find Melchizedek and the holy order of the high priesthood discussed in Alma 13: 10 & 14 of the Book of Mormon. The churches do not understand the priesthood. They think that by joining a church they inherently receive a priesthood, although they don't know what type. "...They have defiled the priesthood, and the covenant of the priesthood..." Nehemiah 13:29, and therefore, they are ripe for destruction. "And because of all this we make a sure covenant, and write it; and our princes, Levites, and priests, seal unto it." Nehemiah 9:38.

Point 16 says "The Book of Mormon never mentions 'garments of the Holy priesthood.'"

Righteous garments are briefly mentioned however in Alma 34:36 of the Book of Mormon. Holy garments are mentioned in Isaiah 52:1; Exodus 28:2 (thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron...), and Ezekiel 42: 14; 44: 18-19. "But the garments modern Christians think of as Western ecclesiastical vestments developed from the 'Sunday best' of late Roman aristocrats which the clergy continued to wear after their barbarian congregations had put on trousers or Lederhosen."[1]

Point 20 says "The Church of the Firstborn is the highest level in the celestial kingdom. Such expression is never used in the Book of Mormon. The church of the firstborn is found in Doctrine and Covenants 76:94 and The History of the Church 1:283."

Mr. Dennis Wright (the author) please open your Bible to Hebrews 12:23 "To the general assembly and the Church of the firstborn..." Our Lord sayeth to the author of Psalms: "I have made a covenant with my chosen, I have sworn unto David my servant." Psalms 89:3. "He shall cry unto me, Thou art my father, my God, and the rock of my salvation. Also I will make him my firstborn, higher than the kings of earth." Psalms 89:26-27. "I knew a man in Christ... such an one caught up to the third heaven." 2 Corinthians 12: 2. The parable of the sower indicates that some seed fell on good ground and brought forth fruit - some 30 fold, some 60 fold, & some 100 fold. Matthew 13. These are a likeness of the three degrees of glory. See also Matthew 19:29: "And everyone that hath forsaken houses, or brethren ... for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold...." See also D & C 77:11 which explains the 144,000 of Revelation 7 which bring as many as will come to the church of the Firstborn. They are they sealed as high priests to administer the everlasting gospel. All are come through great tribulation. (See also Alma 13:1-3). The things of Revelation 7 are to be accomplished in the sixth thousand years. D & C 77:10.

3. Evangel p. 3 - LDS are polytheists.

NO! We do believe there is more than one god. However, unlike polytheists we worship only one God - the Author of our salvation, His Father, and His Comforter, who act as one in the words of Jesus. We worship the Father in the name of Jesus. See also Hosea 13:4 "thou shalt know no God but me: for there is no saviour beside me."

4. Evangel, "A Guide to Mormon History and Teachings" - "There is no evidence from scripture of pre-existence. Rather, God acknowledges it was in the womb of our mothers that He formed us(Isaiah 44:2)." Evangel, p.2.

Again this Baptist author needs to open his Bible further, and expand his knowledge of the word of the Lord. As an example Jeremiah the prophet was told "before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." Jeremiah 1:5. This single scripture not only evidences that we existed as at least intelligences before this life but also that some of us are foreordained to particular callings, another teaching by Joseph Smith. This does not mean that one cannot fall. If a foreordained person falls he/she will be replaced with someone else to do the job. "[Jesus] hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began." 2 Timothy 1:9. "In hope of eternal life, which God that cannot lie, promised before the world began." Titus 1:2. Jude tells us: "And the angels which kept not their first estate [angels in the pre-existence which did not inherit bodies]... he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day." Jude 1:6. These are some of the evil spirits Jesus casts out which crave possession of a body so that they are even willing to enter swine. "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares." Hebrews 13:2.

II. Another common criticism of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is its history of polygamy. The Church of Jesus Christ LDS does not currently practice polygamy, but many detractors point a finger at this early practice as evidence of evil in the church. I in turn point their finger to Abraham who had two wives of which Jesus was a product, and the prophet Samuel who was the answer to the prayers for a son by his mother Hannah - one of the two wives of Elkanah. 1 Samuel 1. Who shall tell God He erred in keeping His covenant with Israel(Jacob), because the sons of Israel were born of different but concurrent wives? Why does God give the Hebrews a law of inheritance when they have two wives (Deuteronomy 21) if this practice is inherently evil under all circumstances? Yet the Catholic Council of Trent (1545-1563) declared that for Christians to have more than one wife is against Divine law. Again modern Protestants are faced with ignoring or throwing out parts of scripture with which they disagree. It was David's adultery with Uriah's wife and Solomon's hundred's of wives and concubines who turned his heart away from God with which the LORD disapproved as well as the unrighteous wielding of the sacred covenant of marriage.

III. To my knowledge the Roman pontiff has never made any prophecies which have come true. However, before he was martyred in 1844, Joseph Smith uncontrovertedly prophesied the U.S. civil war of 1862, thirty years before it transpired. D & C, Sec 87, Dec. 25, 1832 reads "Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that will shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina ... For behold, the southern states shall be divided against the northern states, and the southern states will call on other nations, even the nation of Great Britain, as it is called...." "And then war shall be poured out upon all nations" in the two great world wars of the 20th century, and surely beyond.

It is my testimony that Joseph Smith received much direct inspiration from our Lord. He heard the voice of our God - only by these means was he able to accomplish the restoration of the Lord's church. Was Joseph Smith perfect? No. Was every word which came out of his mouth (and as recorded) divinely inspired? No. The Scriptures prevail over the understanding of men where there is a conflict. In his life Joseph Smith was like the rest of us - seeking to learn and grow - forging his way, though imperfectly, toowards the truth. But this thing told to us by Joseph Smith I know to be true even though it is not in Scripture (prior to 2000 A.D.) in these same words - "If a man gets a fullness of the priesthood of God he has to get it in the same way that Jesus Christ obtained it, and that was by keeping all the commandments and obeying all the ordinances of the house of the Lord." In the King Follett Discourse he declared: "God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret.... It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for a certainty the Character of God, and to know that we may converse with him as one man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us; yea, that God himself, the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth, the same as Jesus Christ himself did."[2] This is not a doctrine of transmigration nor of reincarnation in this world, which are doctrines of the devil. For Joseph Smith understood that the atonement is the greatest work of God, and that all aspects of the law and His Church are appendages to it.[3] Truly, the atonement is the greatest teaching of Jesus Christ and encompasses the whole of His ministry and the Scriptures. "...It is generally supposed that sacrifice was entirely done away when the Great Sacrifice [i.e.,] the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus was offered up, and that there will be no necessity for the ordinance of sacrifice in future; but those who assert this are certainly not acquainted with the duties, privileges and authority of the Priesthood, or with the Prophets. The offering of sacrifice has ever been connected and forms a part of the duties of the Priesthood. It began with the priesthood, and will be continued until after the coming of Christ, from generation to generation." [4]

IV. Adam is revealed as Michael the prince in Doctrine & Covenants 107:54. At the beginning of this last restoration our Lord said: "For they cannot bear meat now, but milk they must receive; wherefore, they must not know these things, lest they perish." D & C 19:22.

V. The Book of Mormon also tells us of the Great and Abominable Church, the mother of harlots, in 1 Nephi 13-14. The Book of Mormon is different from the Bible, and may be unfamiliar to the reader. It has much to teach concerning the atonement, such as the fact that God gave us our free agency such by we may freely choose the truth of His atonement. This choice allows us to progress. God allows us to make our wrong choices so that we may learn the hard way and also know the power of Satan to lead us away. The words of the Book of Mormon are great in matters of the heart and soul. The Book of Mormon says: "Behold, my servant shall deal prudently; he shall be exalted and extolled and be very high. As many were astonished at thee - his visage was so marred, more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men - so shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him, for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider. Verily, verily, I say unto you, all these things shall surely come, even as the Father hath commanded me. Then shall this covenant which the Father hath covenanted with his people be fulfilled; and then shall Jerusalem be inhabited again with my people, and it shall be the land of their inheritance." 3 Nephi 20:43-6. "And verily I say unto you, I give unto you a sign, that ye may know the time when these things shall be about to take place - that I shall gather in, from their long dispersion, my people, O house of Israel, and shall establish again among them my Zion;... Therefore, when these works and the works shall be wrought among you hereafter shall come forth from the Gentiles, unto your seed which shall dwindle in unbelief because of iniquity; For thus it behooveth the Father that it should come forth from the Gentiles, that he may show forth his power unto the Gentiles, for this cause that the Gentiles, if they will not harden their hearts, that they may repent and come unto me and be baptized in my name and know the true points of my doctrine, that they may be numbered among my people, O house of Israel; And when these things come to pass that thy seed shall begin to know these things - it shall be a sign unto them...." 3 Nephi 21:1-7. "For in that day, for my sake shall the Father work a work, which shall be a great and a marvelous work among them; and there shall be among them those who will not believe it, although a man shall declare it unto them. But behold, the life of my servant shall be in my hand; therefore they shall not hurt him, although he shall be marred because of them. Yet, I will heal him, for I will show unto them that my wisdom is greater than the cunning of the devil. Therefore it shall come to pass that whosoever will not believe in my words, who am Jesus Christ, which the Father shall cause him to bring forth unto the Gentiles, and shall give unto him power that he shall bring them forth unto the Gentiles, (it shall be done even as Moses said) they shall be cut off from among my people who are of the covenant." 3 Nephi 21:9-11. "For it shall come to pass, saith the Father, that at that day whosoever will not repent and come unto my Beloved Son, them will I cut off from among my people, O house of Israel; And I will execute vengeance and fury upon them, even as upon the heathen, such as they have not heard. But if they will repent and hearken unto my words, and harden not their hearts, I will establish my church among them, and they shall come in unto the covenant and be numbered among this the remnant of Jacob, unto whom I have given this land for their inheritance." 3 Nephi 21:20-22. "The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions: And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand.... Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand." Ezekiel 37:15-19. "And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them." Ezekiel 37:24. I shall also state that it is significant that the Book of Mormon ends around 421 A.D., when apostasy fell upon America. Thus, when Europe and the East fell into apostasy, the whole world was in apostasy, by which Scripture was fulfilled.

VI. "Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. The keys of the kingdom of God are committed unto man on earth, and from thence shall the gospel roll forth unto the ends of the earth, as the stone which is cut out of the mountain without hands shall roll forth, until it has filled the whole earth." D&C 65:1-2. "Wherefore, may the kingdom of God go forth, that the kingdom of heaven may come, that thou, O God, mayest be glorified in heaven so on earth, that thine enemies may be subdued; for thine is the honor, power and glory, forever and ever. Amen." D & C 65:6. "In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ." Colossians 2:11.

"For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." 1 Corinthians 15:21-6.

"And another angel shall sound his trump, saying: That great church, the mother of abominations, that made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, that persecuteth the saints of God, that shed their blood - she who sitteth upon many waters, and upon the islands of the sea - behold, she is the tares of the earth; she is bound in bundles; her bands are made strong, no man can loose them; therefore, she is ready to be burned. And he shall sound his trump both long and loud, and all nations shall hear it. And there shall be silence in heaven for the space of half an hour; and immediately after shall the curtain of heaven be unfolded, as a scroll is unfolded after it is rolled up, and the face of the Lord shall be unveiled; And the saints that are upon the earth, who are alive, shall be quickened and be caught up to meet him. And they who have slept in their graves shall come forth, for their graves shall be opened; and they also shall be caught up to meet him in the midst of the pillar of heaven - They are Christ's, the first fruits, they who shall descend with him first, and they who are on the earth and in their graves, who are first caught up to meet him; and all this by the voice of the sounding of the trump of the angel of God." D&C 88:94-98. Chapter 88 also shows the priesthood principle to set an example: "And, again the order of the house prepared for the presidency of the school of the prophets, established for their instruction in all things... And this shall be the order of the house of the presidency of the school: He that is appointed to be president, or teacher, shall be found standing in his place, in the house which shall be prepared for him. Therefore, he shall be first in the house of God, in a place that the congregation in the house may hear his words carefully and distinctly, not with loud speech. And when he cometh into the house of God, for he should be first in the house - behold, this is beautiful, that he may be an example - Let him offer himself in prayer upon his knees before God, in token or remembrance of the everlasting covenant." D & C 88:127-131.

"Therefore, tarry ye, and labor diligently, that you may be perfected in your ministry to go forth among the Gentiles for the last time, as many as the mouth of the Lord shall name, to bind up the law and seal up the testimony, and to prepare the saints for the hour of judgment which is to come; That their souls may escape the wrath of God, the desolation of abomination which awaits the wicked, both in this world and in the world to come. Verily, I say unto you, let those who are not the first elders continue in the vineyard until the mouth of the Lord shall call them, for their time is not yet come; their garments are not clean from the blood of this generation." D & C 88:84-5.

"He that sendeth up treasures unto the land of Zion shall receive an inheritance in this world, and his works shall follow him, and also a reward in the world to come. Yea, and blessed are the dead that die in the Lord, from henceforth, when the Lord shall come, and old things shall pass away, and all things become new, they shall rise from the dead and shall not die after, and shall receive an inheritance before the Lord, in the holy city. And he that liveth when the Lord shall come, and hath kept the faith, blessed is he; nevertheless, it is appointed to him to die at the age of man. Wherefore, children shall grow up until they become old; old men shall die; but they shall not sleep in the dust, but they shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye. Wherefore, for this cause preached the apostles unto the world the resurrection of the dead. These things are the things that ye must look for; and, speaking after the manner of the Lord, they are now nigh at hand, and in a time to come, even in the day of the coming of the Son of Man. And until that hour there will be foolish virgins among the wise; and at that hour cometh an entire separation of the righteous and the wicked; and in that day will I send mine angels to pluck out the wicked and cast them into unquenchable fire." D & C 63:48-54.

"...Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And they shall see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh." Luke 21:24-28.

"And I have told you concerning Jerusalem; and when that day shall come, shall a remnant be scattered among all nations; But they shall be gathered again; but they shall remain until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. And in that day shall be heard of wars and rumors of wars, and the whole earth shall be in commotion, and men's heart's shall fail them, and they shall say that Christ delayeth his coming until the end of the earth. And the love of men shall wax cold, and iniquity shall abound. And when the times of the Gentiles is come in, a light shall break forth among them that sit in darkness, and it shall be the fulness of my gospel; But they receive it not; for they perceive not the light, and they turn their hearts from me because of the precepts of men. And in that generation shall the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." D & C 45:24-30. "And I said unto them: Be not troubled, for, when all these things shall come to pass, ye may know that the promises which have been made unto you shall be fulfilled. And when the light shall begin to break forth, it shall be with them like unto a parable which I will show you." D & C 45:35-6. "And then they shall look for me, and, behold, I will come; and they shall see me in the clouds of heaven, clothed with power and great glory; with all the holy angels; and he that watches not for me shall be cut off. But before the arm of the Lord shall fall, an angel shall sound his trump, and the saints that have slept shall come forth to meet me in the cloud." D & C 45:44-5.

"Wherefore, a commandment I give unto you, to prepare and organize yourselves by a bond or everlasting covenant that cannot be broken. And he who breaketh it shall lose his office and standing in the church, and shall be delivered over to the buffetings of Satan until the day of redemption. Behold this is the preparation wherewith I prepare you, and the foundation, and the ensample which I give unto you, whereby you may accomplish the commandments which are given you; That through my providence, notwithstanding the tribulation which shall descend upon you, that the church may stand independent above all other creatures beneath the celestial world; That you may come up unto the crown prepared for you, and be made rulers over many kingdoms, saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Zion, who hath established the foundations of Adam-ondi-Ahman; Who hath appointed Michael your prince, and established his feet, and set him upon high, and given unto him the keys of salvation under the counsel and direction of the Holy One, who is without beginning of days or end of life. Verily, verily, I say unto you, ye are little children, and ye have not as yet understood how great blessings the Father hath in his own hands prepared for you; And ye cannot bear all things now; nevertheless, be of good cheer, for I will lead you along. The kingdom is yours and the blessings thereof are yours, and the riches of eternity are yours. And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more. Wherefore, do the things which I have commanded you, saith your Redeemer, even the Son Ahman, who prepareth all things before he taketh you; For ye are the church of the Firstborn, and he will take you up in a cloud, and appoint every man his portion. And he that is a faithful and wise steward shall inherit all things. Amen." D & C 78:11-22.

Some Other Links of Interest

Testimony Stories:   Our LDS life conversion stories "our stories"   Hebrews in America?    The Decalogue Stone

End Notes


[1] Encyclopedia Americana, v.21 "Persia, Ancient", p.733.
[2] Durant, Will. Our Oriental Heritage (Simon & Schuster, NY. 1954), v.I, pp.254-5.


[1] Irenaeus. Against Heresies. Bk II, ch. xxviii, in Ante-Nicene Fathers.
[2] McBrien, Richard P. Catholicism (Winston Press; Minn., MN 1980), v.1, p. 290.
[3] Gonzalez, Justo. A History of Christian Thought, v.1 (Abingdon Press, Nashville 1970), p. 180.
[4] Klotsche, E.H. The History of Christian Doctrine (Baker Book House; GR, Mi. 1949), p.54.
[5] Ante-Nicene Fathers, v.3, Tertullian book II, p., 300-303.
[6] Klotsche, p. 53.
[7] McBrien, p. 291.
[8] Elliot, T.G. The Christianity of Constantine the Great (Univ. of Scranton Press, 1996).
[9] The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, Trans. Frank Williams (E.J. Brill, NY, 1987), p. 329.
[10] A New Dictionary of Christian Theology (SCM Press, 1983), p. 40.
[11] Elliot, p.207.
[12] The Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, 2nd (Charles Scribner's Sons, NY, 1900), v.1, p.3.
[13] Barnes, Timothy D. Constantine and Eusebius (Harvard Univ. Press; Cam., Mass. 1981), p. 226.
[14] Id., p. 244.
[15] Boak & Sinnigen. A History of Rome to A.D. 565 (Macmillan Co., N.Y., 1965), p. 506.
[16] The Cambridge Medieval History, v.I, p.140.
[17] Id., p.163.
[18] Gibbon, Edward. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, v.5 (Kelmscott Society, NY), p.21.
[19]Hall, Stuart. Doctrine and Practice in the Early Church (Wm. Eerdmans Publishing Co; GR, Mi 1991), p.116.
[20]Holsapple, p.350-51.
[21] Grant, Michael. Constantine the Great (Charles Scribner's Sons, NY. 1993), p.86.
[22] Holsapple, Lloyd. Constantine the Great (Sheed & Ward, NY 1942), p.354.
[23] Id., p.319.
[24] Barnes, p. 259.
[25] Boak & Sinnigen, p. 437.
[26] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, ed. John McManners (Oxford University Press, NY, 1992), p.70-71.
[27] Holsapple, p.292.
[28] Elliot, pp. 83-84.
[29] Sharp, Mary. A Guide to the Churches of Rome (Chilton Books, NY. 1966), p.4.
[30] Hislop, Alexander. The Two Babylons (Loizeaux Brothers, NY. 1948), pp.203-4.
[31] Hislop, pp.197-201. Jastrow, Morris. The Religion of Babylonia and Assyria (Ginn & Co., NY. 1898), pp.50-5,239,407-48, 547-8. King, L.W. Babylonian Religion and Mythology (Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co. London 1899), pp.100-2.
[32] Budge, Wallis. Osiris and the Egyptian Resurrection (Philip Lee Warner, London 1911), pp.32,51-9.
[33] Butcher, E.L. The Story of the Church of Egypt (Smith, Elder & Co. London 1897), v.I, p.219. Neale, John. A History of the Holy Eastern Church: The Patriarchate of Alexandria (Joseph Masters, London 1847), v.I, p.218.
[34] Stewart, Desmond. Great Cairo: Mother of the World (The American Univ. in Cairo Press, Cairo 1996), p.31.
[35] Hislop, p.198-9. See, Neale, v.I, p.213.
[36] Barnes, p. 66.
[37] Barnes, p. 150.
[38] Elliot, p.233. Burckhardt. The Age of Constantine the Great (Pantheon Books, NY. 1949), p.283.
[39] Ridley, R.T. History of Rome (L'ermer di Bretschneider, 1987), p.631.
[40] Holsapple.
[41] Hall, p.118.
[42] Stevenson, Smith, & Madden. A Dictionary of Roman Coins, Republican and Imperial (B. A. Seaby Ltd., London 1964), p.755.
[43] Bellinger, A.R. et al. "Late Roman Gold and Silver Coins at Dumbarton Oaks: Diocletian to Eugenius" in Dumbarton Oaks Papers (Johnson Reprint Corp. NY. 1964), N.18, p.183-4.
[44] Burch, Vacher. Myth & Constantine the Great (Oxford Univ. Press, London; 1927), p. 57-61.
[43] The Historians' History of the World, v.5, p.522.
[46] Stevenson, Smith, & Madden, p.347.
[47] Barnes, p.233.
[48] Barnes, pp.238-9.
[49] Elliot, p.258.
[50] Holsapple, p.317.
[51] Elliot, p.112.
[52] Barnes, p.233.
[53] Holsapple, p.344.
[54] Holsapple, p.345.
[55] Durant, Will. Caesar and Christ (Simon & Schuster, NY. 1944), pp.655-6.
[56] The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, p. 325.
[57] Ridley, p.630.
[58] Id., p.133.


[1] Davis, George S. The Real Beast and its Image (Hammond Press, Chicago, 1922), p.200-201.
[2] Maxwell-Stuart, P.G. Chronicle of the Popes (Thomas & Hudson, London 1997), p.166.
[3] Horsley, A. Burt, Peter and the Popes (Religious Studies Center, BYU 1989), p.62.
[4] Wait, Eugene. The March of the Teutons (Carlton Press, NY. 1972), pp.44-7.
[5] The Cambridge Medieval History, ed. Gwatkin & Whitney (Cambridge, London 1964), v.1, pp.304-5.
[6] Diesner, Hans. The Great Migration (Hippocrene Books 1978).
[7] Wait, p.70; Hope. Conversion of the Teutonic Race (R. Washbourne, London 1872).
[8] Gibbon, v.6, pp.73-4.
[9] Wait, ch.3.
[10] Kingsley, Charles. The Roman and the Teuton (Macmillan & Co., NY. 1891), p.110.
[11] Boak & Sinnigen, p. 503.
[12] Tillard, J.M.R. The Bishop of Rome (Michael Glazier, Inc., Wilmington, De 1982), p.73.
[13] Boak & Sinnigen, p. 488-93.
[14] The Cambridge Medieval History, v.I, p.439.
[15] See, Diesner, p.140-1, 244.
[16] Kingsley, p.128-9. Wait, ch.4.
[17] Vasiliev, A.A. History of the Byzantine Empire (Univ. Of Wisconsin Press, Madison 1958), pp.112-3.
[18] Grisar, Hartmann. History of Rome and the Popes in the Middle Ages (Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co. London 1912), v.II, pp.249-253. Bower, v.I, pp.314-8.
[19] Grisar, v.II, pp.252-3.
[20] The Cambridge Medieval History, v.I, p.453.
[21] Boak & Sinnigen, p. 487.
[22] Grisar, v.II, pp. 254-55.
[23] Kingsley, p.129.
[24] Boak & S., p. 489-90.
[25] Vasiliev, p.148.
[26] Richards, Jeffrey. The Popes and the Papacy in the Early Middle Ages: 476-752 (Routledge & Kegan Paul, London 1979), p.141.
[27] Kingsley, p.151; Wait, ch.4.
[28] Wait, ch. VIII "The Lombards".
[29] Wait, ch.9.
[30] Encyclopedia Americana, (1991, v.23), pp.695 (source for the Lombard-Avar alliance),739.
[31] Walsh, Michael. An Illustrated History of the Popes (S. Martin's Press, NY. 1980), p.191.
[32] Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.245.
[33] Bainton, Roland H. Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther (1950), p.185.
[34] Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.245.
[35] Walsh, pp.191-5.
[36] Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.356.
[37] Meyendorff, John. Orthodoxy and Catholicity (Sheed & Ward, NY. 1966), p.56.
[38] The Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, 2nd, v.1, p.15.
[39] Meyendorff, p.54.
[40] Tillard, pp. 53-54.
[41] Encyclopedia Americana, (1991, v.23), p.695; Walsh, p.91.
[42] Decretal, De Tranlatic Episcop.
[43] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.72.
[44] Id., p.72.
[45] Carroll, Michael. Catholic Cults and Devotions (McGill-Queen's, London. 1989), p.115.
[46] The Papal Encyclicals 1878-1903 (McGrath Publishing Co. 1981), p.359.
[47] (Taken from his life, by St. Bonaventure.) Man's Only Affair, Trans. Paul LeClerc, S.J. (J. Seymour, NY. 1813), pp.175-6.
[48] Walsh, p.8.
[49] Walsh, p.9.
[50] The Vatican. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Harry N. Abrams, Inc. NY 1975), p.319.
[51] The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, v.I, bk.II, ch.28, sec.6, p.110.
[52] Janus. The Pope and the Council (Rivingtons, London; 1869), p.51.
[53] Pentecost, Dwight. Romanism in the Light of Scripture (Moody Press, Chicago 1962), p.100.
[54] Shortt, de Lisle. Divine Revelation or Man-made Doctrines (T & T Clark, Edinburgh 1939), p. xii.
[55] Grisar, v.III, pp.281-3.
[56] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.69.
[57] Conc. Lat. II can.6, Labb. Vol X, p. 1003.
[58] McManners, p.40.
[59] Capel, Thomas. The Pope: The Vicar of Christ; the Head of the Church (Fr. Pustet & Co., NY. 1885), pp. 101-4.
[60] Tanner, Norman, ed. Decrees of the Ecumenical Councils (Sheed & Ward, 1990), p.529.
[61] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, pp.36-37.
[62] Id., p.209.
[63] Tillard, p. 36 citing Abbe' Ollagnier, Catechisme. Livre du Maitre, p. 139, Paris 1924.
[64] Tillard, p.36 citing ed. Lasfargues, Explication litterale et sommaire du Catechisme (Quebec 1946), pp. 66-7.
[65] Johnson, Frederick A. Christ and Catholicism (Vantage Press, N.Y. 1954).
[66] Id., pp.155-59.
[67] Tillard, p. 36.
[68] Capel, p. 27.
[69] Kerr, William Shaw. A Handbook on the Papacy (Philosophical Library, NY 1951), p.204 citing Ep. Ad Mauritium, lib. vii, ep. 33. P.L. 77: 891,892.F
[70] Id., p.205.
[71] Id., p.206.
[72] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.98.
[73] Encyclopedia Americana, (1991, v.23), pp.695-696.
[74] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.214-215.
[75] Janus, p.247.
[76] Creighton, Mandell. A History of the Papacy (Longmans, Green, & Co. NY. 1911), v.VII, pp.25-50.
[77] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p. 240.
[78] Id., p.264.
[79] Encyclopedia Americana, (1991, v.12), pp.242.
[80] Dowling, John. History of Romanism (Edward Walker, NY.1853), Bk. six, ch. 5, sec. 62, pp.425-6.
[81] Concil Tolosanum, Pope Gregory IX, Anno, Chr. 1229, Canons 14 & 2. Although this was apparently not an ecumenical council, its authority over the Albigenses is recognized by The Catholic Encyclopedia, v.VIII, 1910, "Inquisition."
[82] The Papal Encyclicals, p.328.
[83] Walsh, p.48.
[84] Johnson, p.46.
[85] Kerr, pp.217-19.
[86] Walsh, p.145.
[87] The Vatican, p.114.


[1] Grant, p.195.
[2] Sharp, p.1.
[3] Tanner, p.236.
[4] Johnson, pp. ix-x. The Creed can be looked up in a Catholic book of ordinances, Ordo Administrandi Sacramenta, pp.83-86.
[5] The Papal Encyclicals 1878-1903 "Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII on the Holy Spirit May 9, 1897," p.410.
[6] Hislop, p.6.
[7] For a picture of the scarlet robes during the Second Vatican Council see The Vatican, pp.18-19.
[8] Kantorowicz, Ernst. Laudes Regiae (Univ. of Ca. Press, L.A. 1958), p.138.
[9] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.165; illus. opposite 165.
[10] Id., p. 119; illus.118.
[11] Fattorusso, Joseph. Wonders of Italy (The Medici Art Series, Florence 1952), p.437.
[12] Walsh, p.117.
[13] Kerr, William, p.217.
[14] Creighton, Mandell, v. i, p.73.
[15] Gavin, Anthony. The Master Key to Popery, p. 375.
[16] Creighton, IV, pp.110-5.
[17] Lanciani, Rodolfo. The Golden Days of the Renaissance in Rome, p. opp 132. Grisar, v.I, p.158.
[18] Sharp, p.2.
[19] Encyclopedia Americana, (1991, v.23), pp.723-730.
[20] Walsh, p.7.
[21] Even the Janiculum was at one time part of Montes Vaticani. Grisar, v.I, p.270.
[22] McBrien, p.259.
[23] Johnson, p. 26.
[24] See, The Vatican Its History - Its Treasures, pp.46,47,191,192,287,306,434.
[25] Stroll, Mary. Symbols as Power: The Papacy Following the Investiture Contest (E.J. Brill, NY. 1991), p.183.
[26] Renan, Ernest. Antichrist (Roberts Brothers, Boston. 1897), pp.323, 353-6.
[27] See Victorinus of Pettau (Bibl. etc., iii. 418), Lactantius (Inst. Vii. 14-20; De mort. persec. 2), and Malvenda, De Antichristo, lib. vi. De vitiis Antichr.
[28] Durant, v.III, pp.671-2.
[29] Stevenson, p.641.
[30] Bunson, Matthew. The Pope Encyclopedia (Crown Trade Paperbacks, NY. 1995), p.359.
[31] See e.g., Walsh, p.59.
[32] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.63.
[33] Id., p.76.
[34] Walsh, p.112.
[35] Encyclopedia Americana, v.3, p.11.
[36] Grisar, v.II, p.291.
[37] Kingsley, p.42.
[38] Gregorovius, v.2, p.498.
[39] Creighton, VI, p.85-6.
[40] Creighton, VI, pp.140-1.
[41] Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, p.254.
[42] Klotsche, p.224.
[43] Philips, Gerard. The Role of the Laity in the Church (Fides Publishers, 1956), p.173.
[44] Gavin, pp.77-82.
[45] McManners, p.172.
[46] Creighton, VI, p.75.
[47] Creighton, VI, p.77.
[48] Creighton, James. A Dictionary of the Scripture Proper Names (Griggs & Dickinsons, Phil. 1814).
[49] Sharp, pp.23-24.
[50] Gregorovius, v.5, p.13.
[51] Showerman, Grant. Eternal Rome (Yale Univ. Press, New Haven, Conn. 1924), p.586.
[52] Stroll, pp.13-14.
[53] Tillard, p.84.
[54] Gregorovius, Ferdinand. History of the City of Rome in the Middle Ages (AMS Press, NY. 1967), v.II, pp.293-5. Mann, v.I, p.307-9.
[55] Gibbon, v.III, p.365.
[56] McBrien, Richard. Lives of the Popes (Harper, San Francisco. 1997). p.181.
[57] Kingsley, p.207.
[58] Walsh, p.93.
[59] Holsapple, p.263.
[60] Pastor, Ludwig. The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages (B. Herder Book Co., St. Louis, Mo. 1952), v. XIX, p.30.


[1] The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, vol. 7, pp.210.
[2] Durant, v.I, p.222-4.
[3] Jastrow, p.652.
[4] Newton, Sir Isaac. Observations upon the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John (Darby & Brown, London 1733), p.29; Encyclopedia Americana, v.21, pp.732-734.
[5] Encyclopedia Americana, v.21, p.736.
[6] Cleon Skousen, The Years of the Living Christ, V.1, (1992), pp. xxxvii-xxxix.
[7] Odescalchi, Edmund. The Third Crown: A Study in World Government Exercised by the Popes (Univ. Press of America, NY. 1997), p.2-3.


[1] Grant, Michael. Dawn of the Middle Ages (Bonanza Books, NY. 1986), pp.68-71, 142-3.
[2] Robinson, Neal. Islam: A Concise Introduction (Curzon Press 1999), pp.21,23.
[3] Ibn Ishaq, The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ishaq's 'Sirat Rasul Allah.'" Oxford University Press(1955, p. 682).


[1] Encyclopedia Americana, v.21, pp.733.
[2] Durant, C & C, p.545. Levick, Barbara. Vespasian (Routledge, NY. 1999), pp.40-42.
[3] Jouguet, Pierre. Macedonian Imperialism and the Hellenization of the East (Alfred A. Knopf, NY. 1928), pp.150-60.
[4] The Historians' History of the World, v.IV, pp.554-7.
[5] Historians' History of the World, v.IV, pp.573-4.
[6] See, The Holy Bible Containing the Old and New Testaments and the Apocrypha (R.H. Hinkley Co., Boston 1904) [as translated for King James in 1611].
[7] Bevan, Edwyn. The House of Seleucus (Barnes & Noble, NY. 1966) v.II, pp.142-5.
[8] Bevan, pp.142-5; Hill, v.1, p.188.
[9] Bevan, pp.144-5. Hill, v.1, p.189.
[10] Graetz, Heinrich. History of the Jews (The Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia 1891), v.I, p.455.
[11] Seager, Robin. Pompey: A Political Biography (Basil Blackwell, Oxford 1979), pp.35-52; Smallwood, Mary. The Jews Under Roman Rule from Pompey to Diocletian (E.J. Brill, Leiden 1981), v.20 of Studies in Judaism in Late Antiquity, pp.16-26.
[12] Complete Works of Josephus (Bigelow, Brown & Co., NY. 1900), v.2 "Antiquities of the Jews," pp.390-6.
[13] Greenhalgh, Peter. Pompey: The Roman Alexander (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London 1980), pp.97-8; 165-170; Leach, John. Pompey the Great (Croom Helm, London 1978), pp.96-101.
[14] Leach, p.109.
[15] Leach, p.111.
[16] Leach, pp.135-7.
[17] The Historians' History of the World, v.5, pp.513, 531.
[18] The Historians' History of the World, v.5, pp.534-543.
[19] Grant, Constantine, p.86.
[20] Grant, pp.86-96.
[21] Sharp, p.3.
[22] Stroll, pp.14, n.55; 31.
[23] Tanner, v.I, p.578.
[24] Partner, Peter. The Lands of St Peter (Univ. of Ca. Press, LA. 1972), pp.185-6.
[25] Kingsley, p.201.
[26] Kingsley, p.204.
[27] Reston, James Jr. The Last Apocalypse: Europe at the Year 1000 A.D. (Doubleday, NY. 1998), p. intro, 276.
[28] Mercer, Samuel. The Ethiopic Liturgy (The Young Churchman Co. Milwaukee 1915), pp.36-43,42.
[29] Grisar, v.III, pp.218-9.
[30] Grant, Constantine, p.213. The Historians' History of the World, v.VIII, pp.502-9.
[31] Gregorovius, v.4, pp.24-72. The Historians' History of the World, v.VIII, pp.503-8. Odescalchi, pp.16-18.
[32] Odescalchi, p.19.
[33] Odescalchi, p.62.
[34] Odescalchi, p.11.
[35] Edwards, p.82.
[36] Durant, v.VI, p.850.
[37] Odescalchi, pp.20-2.
[38] Odescalchi, pp.28-30,64-5.
[39] Richards, p.258.
[40] Brentano, Robert. Rome Before Avignon (Basic Books, NY. 1974), p.151.
[41] Gregorovius, v.5, pp.14-15.
[42] Hibbert, Christopher. Rome: The Biography of a City (W.W. Norton & Co., NY. 1985), pp.172,353.
[43] Durant, v.VI, pp.520.
[44] The Cambridge Medieval History, v.II, pp. 350-1.
[45] Boyd, James. Story of the Crusades (P.W. Ziegler & Co., Phil. 1892), pp.50-138, 131. Riley-Smith, Jonathan, ed. The Atlas of the Crusades (Facts on File, NY. 1991), pp.10,26-31. The Historians' History of the World, v.VIII, pp.314-53.
[46] Gregorovius, v.4, pp.506-7.
[47] Gregorovius, v.4, pp.478-546.
[48] Boyd, pp.172-192; Riley-Smith, pp.10,11,47-58.
[49] Boyd, pp.193-201.
[50] Boyd, pp.201-211. Riley-Smith, p.11.
[51] Boyd, pp.230-256; Riley-Smith, p.11-12.
[52] Boyd, p.171.
[53] Setton, Kenneth M. The Papacy and the Levant (The American Philosophical Society, Phil. 1976), v.I, p.9.
[54] Mann, v.II, p.262.
[55] Mann, v.11, pp.263-4.
[56] Mann, v.11, p.265.
[57] Boyd, pp.266-98.
[58] Setton, v.1, p.20.
[59] Setton, v.I, p.1.
[60] Lock, Peter. The Franks in the Aegean, 1204-1500 (Longman, NY.1995), p.198.
[61] Mann, v.11, p.267.
[62] Wolff, Robert Lee. Studies in the Latin Empire of Constantinople (Valorium Reprints, London 1976), reprinted from Traditio (NY. 1948), v.VI, p.34.
[63] Mann, v.11, p.252.
[64] Boyd, pp.315-7. Riley-Smith, p.12.
[65] Smith-Riley, p.12.
[66] Tanner, v.I, pp.267-71.
[67] Tanner, v.I, p.295.
[68] Smith-Riley, pp.108-9.
[69] Boyd, pp.325-40; Smith-Riley, pp.13,94.
[70] Boyd, pp.340-3.
[71] Hill, George. The History of Cyprus (Cambridge University Press, London 1972), v.1, p.97.
[72] Encyclopedia Americana, v.5, "Byzantium."
[73] The Holy Bible (Catholic Version), (Good Counsel Publishers, Chicago 1966), pp.708, 743 under heading "Antiochus as a Figure of Antichrist."
[74] Setton, v.I, p.49.
[75] Bredenkamp, Francois. The Byzantine Empire of Thessaloniki (1224-1242), (Municipality of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki 1996), pp.69. Setton, v.I, p.51.
[76] Bredenkamp, pp.71-5. Nicol, Donald M. The Despotate of Epiros (Blackwell & Mott, Oxford 1957), pp.50-64. Setton, v.I, p.44-53.
[77] Bredenkamp, pp.141-2. Setton, v.I, p.52,55(n.46).
[78] Boyd, pp.342-5. Setton, v.I, p.55(n.46).
[79] Boyd, pp.346-7. Setton, v.I, pp.54-5.
[80] Setton, v.I, pp.54-63. Boyd, pp.346-7.
[81] Setton, v.I, pp.63-5.
[82] Boyd, pp.350-2.
[83] Setton, v.I, p.66.
[84] Setton, v.I, p.61.
[85] Boyd, pp.357-9. Smith-Riley, p.13.
[86] Boyd, p.354.
[87] Boyd, pp.360-3.
[88] Boyd, pp.363-93. Smith-Riley, p.96.
[89] Setton, v.I, pp.70,81,89-93.
[90] Setton, v.I, pp.95-7.
[91] Boyd, p.417.
[92] Tanner, v.I, p.309.
[93] Setton, v.I, pp.104-38.
[94] Boyd, p.458.
[95] Odescalchi, pp. 89-93.
[96] More, Paul. The Catholic Faith (Princeton Univ. Press 1931), p.134-5.
[97] Morrison, Karl, ed. The Investiture Controversy (Holt, Rinehart & Winston, NY. 1971), pp. 82,87,101.
[98] The Cambridge Medieval History, v.V, p.109.
[99] Tanner, v.I, pp.189-90.
[100] Stroll, pp.42-4.
[101] Odescalchi, p.1,10.
[102] Hapur, James. Revelations: The Medieval World (Henry Holt & Co., NY. 1995), p.19.
[103] Prawer, Joshua. The History of the Jews in the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem (Clarendon Press, Oxford 1988), pp.42-6.
[104] Harpur, p.95
[105] Brundage, James A. Medieval Canon Law and the Crusader (Univ. of Wisconsin Press, Milwaukee 1969), pp.192-3.
[106] Brundage, pp.154-5.
[107] Smith-Riley, p.74.
[108] Odescalchi, p.65.
[109] Smith-Riley, p.130. Durant, v.VI, pp.165-9.
[110] Durant, v.VI, p.607.
[111] Odescalchi, p.63.
[112] Setton, v.I, p.133 (n.49, See, Pipino, Francesco (Dominican), Chron.: de papa Nicholao III; and Chronicon imperatorum et pontificum Bavaricum).
[113] Kantorowicz, p.139.
[114] Kantorowicz, p.137.
[115] Kantorowicz, p.145.
[116] Extravagantes Ioannis XXII (Ad Salamandrae, Apud Sennetonios, 1556), Title 14 under Declaramus, col. 140.
[117] Extravagantes, Tvm Viginti D. Ioannis Papae XXII Tvm Commvnes (Nicolaum Iullieron Typographum Regium, & Ioannem Iullieron, 1618), Title 14 under Declaramus, col. 153.
[118] Ferraris, Lucii. Prompta Bibliotheca (Gasparem Storti, Bononiae, Venetiis, 1763), Tomus 6, "Papa", pp.16-17 (Tomus 5 in 1858 version, p.1823).
[119] Smith-Riley, p.74.
[120] Boyd, p.147.
[121] Durant, v.1, p.249.
[122] Odescalchi, pp.97-104.
[123] Smith-Riley, pp.17,146,148,162,164. Odescalchi, p.84-7. Encyclopedia Americana, v.27, "Turkey."
[124] Durant, v.3, p.499. Haas, Christopher. Alexandria in Late Antiquity (John Hopkins Univ. Press, Baltimore 1997), p. 42-6, 249-50.
[125] The Catholic Encyclopedia (Robert Appleton Co., NY. 1907), v.I, "Alexandria, The Church of," p.301.
[126] Meyendorff, p.55.
[127] Hass, p. 248.
[128] Catholic Encyclopedia, v.I, p.301.
[129] Butcher, p.326.
[130] Hass, pp. 248-50.
[131] Neale, v.II, p.294.
[132] Setton, v.I, pp.269-73. Neale, v.II, p.326,330. Tanner, v.1, p.236. Catholic Encyclopedia, v.I, p.302.
[133] Atiya, Aziz. A History of Eastern Christianity (Methuen & Co. London 1968), pp.112-3.
[134] Catholic Encyclopedia, v.I, p.300. Our Sunday Visitor's Catholic Almanac, (Our Sunday Visitor, Inc. Huntington, In. 1999), p.302.
[135] Hyatt, Harry. The Church of Abyssinia (Luzac & Co., London 1928), pp. 34-41.
[136] Setton, v.III, p.185.
[137] Boyd, p.449. Setton, v.III, pp.193-215.
[138] Setton, v.III, p.410.
[139] Setton, v.IV, p.585.
[140] Boyd, pp.450-1. Smith-Riley, p.18,19,164. Encyclopedia Americana, v.27, "Turkey." Setton, v.III, pp.325-6,353-4,406-46.
[141] Durant, Will. The Reformation (Simon & Schuster, NY. 1957), v.VI, pp.415-7, 421-4.
[142] Durant, v.VI, pp.406-13.
[143] Durant, v.VI, pp.442-6, 453-7.
[144] Durant, v.VI, pp.503-6.
[145] Durant, v.VI, pp.621,628.
[146] Durant, v.VI, 615-8.
[147] Durant, v.VI, pp.635.
[148] Durant, v.VI, pp.640-1.
[149] Pastor, XIV, p.267-86,287 (see Avviso of 12/31/1558).
[150] Durant, v.VI, pp.897-9, 924-6.
[151] Odescalchi, p.53. Encyclopedia Americana, v.26, "Thirty Years' War."
[152] Setton, v.IV, pp.1100-1.


[1] Boyd, pp.105, 148-9 (between death of Tancred 1112 and Baldwin 1118). Riley-Smith, p.10. Fulcher of Chartres. A History of the Expedition to Jerusalem 1095-1127 (The Univ. of Tennessee Press, Knoxville 1969), Trans. by Frances Rita Ryan, p.210 (incl. notes).
[2] Bainton, pp. 2777-81.


[1] McLoughlin, Emmett. Famous Ex-Priests (Lyle Stuart, NY. 1968), p.168-9.


[1] The Oxford Illustrated History of Christianity, ed. John McManners (Oxford University Press, NY, 1992), p. 34.
[2] Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp.308; 345-6.
[3] Id, p.121.
[4] Id., p.172.


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