The visit of the Pope to the Republic of Ireland last weekend ( 24th -25th August 2018 ), has already generated controversy, division and confusion.
There are divisions within the Presbyterian Church of Ireland as to the attendance of their Moderator Dr. Charles McMullan, and within the Roman Catholic Church, dissenting voices have also been raised, especially in light of the crimes of abuse against children and the subsequent coverups of the same.
To the Bible Believer there is no ambiguity concerning our response to whom the Pope claims to represent, and to the worldwide abuse of children, executed by Priests and Teachers who work under the supervision of the ‘Holy See’.
For the Pope to take upon himself the title, ‘the Vicar of Christ on earth’, or Anti Christ, (one who takes the place of Christ), not only distances himself from the Biblical definition of what it is to be a Christian, but also the institution that he represents. The words of Archbishop Thomas Cranmer as he was burned at the stake are still the cry of the true believer to this day, “And as for the Pope, I refuse him, as Christ’s enemy and antichrist, with all his false doctrine.”
It is a clearly established Biblical principle, that false religion has the potential to conceive acts of immorality. (Exodus chapter 32). There is no doubt, that the theology of the Roman Catholic Church is based upon a series of false premises:
- Superstition instead of the Scriptures
- Tradition instead of the Truth
- Religion instead of Redemption
- Control instead of Conversion
There is nothing within the message of the Roman Catholic Church that leads a man or woman to a transformed life. Sadly the opposite is the case, as the names of Priests and Nuns are catalogued in documents that record some of the vilest acts against the children of this, and previous, generations.
It is therefore reprehensible for any professing Protestant to shore up a depraved and degenerating system with their presence. For a professing Protestant minister or any born again believer to countenance being in the presence of the Pope, attending the mass, and remaining silent over the offer of indulgences and pretend purgatory is a great act of betrayal to Jesus Christ and his Gospel. Such action is reprehensible and displays a grave lack of concern for the people’s spiritual wellbeing.
Surely our love for Roman Catholics living in Northern Ireland and in the Republic of Ireland demands that we have a genuine concern for the salvation of their immortal souls?
The Bible teaches that we are to ‘speak the truth in love’ to all our neighbours.
Our spiritual love for all sinners is constantly fuelled through the gracious power of God the Holy Spirit, who through the Word of God, exalts the Lord Jesus Christ as the sole King and only Head of the Church.