paul ii and benedict xvi
John Paul II
After leading the Roman Catholic Church for 27 years, Pope John
Paul II died on April 2nd, 2005. He is highly regarded and praised by almost
everyone, Catholics and non-Catholics alike. Now he appears
before God to be judged according to the truth. Man's praise will
not influence or impress the Divine Judge, the true Head of the
Church: "Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for so did
their fathers to the false prophets" (Luke 6:26).
Pope means father; he is even called by the divine title
"Holy Father" - but the disciples of Jesus Christ know
only one Father, God. "Do not call anyone on earth your father;
for One is your Father, He who is in heaven" (Matthew
23:9). Nor do we call anyone by the title "holy" except
our God, for the Scriptures say: "Who shall not fear You, O
Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy" (Revelations 15:4).
The Pope is also known as Supreme Pontiff, a title inherited from
old Roman pagan mystery religion. Pontiff (Latin pontifex)
means a bridge; but for us Christians we have only one bridge to
heaven -- one mediator between God and man, Jesus Christ (1 Timothy
The Pope claims to be the vicar of Christ, and has worked all his
life to bring peace on earth. But the One he claims to represent had
another purpose. Jesus said: "Do not think that I came to bring
peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword" (Matthew
10:34). Jesus preached one God, one way of salvation - the Pope
gives false hopes to those who worship other gods and seek salvation
apart from Jesus Christ, to Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists. Thus
he is loved by all, but Christ was hated by all, and crucified!
He claims to be the successor of St Peter, but unlike Peter, Pope John Paul II taught others to trust in Mary and to surrender
the hour of death wholly to her care. The apostle Peter taught
people to call on the only name given by God for our salvation, the
blessed name of Jesus the Messiah. "Nor is there salvation in
any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men
by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
The Pope claims to be the infallible teacher of all Christians, but he
distorts the clear meaning of Scripture to uphold traditional
Catholic dogma. For example to defend the Mass (which is said to be
a re-enactment and a carrying on of the sacrifice of Christ on the
cross), Pope John Paul wrote: "Through the shedding of His own
blood, Jesus Christ constantly 'enters into God's sanctuary thus
obtaining eternal redemption' (cf. Heb 9:12)" (Crossing the
Threshold of Hope).
Compare the Pope's words with what the Bible actually says: "Not with the blood of goats and
calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once
for all, having obtained eternal redemption" (Hebrews 9:12).
Notice how the word 'entered' is changed to 'enters' - giving the
impression that this action is continuous rather than a simple
action completed in the past. Moreover, the word 'once' is omitted,
and the quotation is preceded by the word 'constantly.' Also,
instead of 'having obtained' he writes 'obtaining', as if redemption
is in the process of being accomplished! The meaning of this
scripture is reversed! If Jesus 'constantly enters' the holy place,
Christ is no better than the Levitical priests and if He has not
obtained redemption, his blood is as powerless as that of goats and
calves. But thanks be to God, His Word teaches the very opposite:
"By his own blood he entered in once (not constantly enters)
into the holy place, having obtained (not obtaining) eternal
redemption for us."
What do you choose to believe: God's Word or the teaching of the
papacy? Would you trust your salvation wholly in the hands of Jesus
Christ alone? Or would you continue to perform religious works, do
penance, rely on the daily sacrifice of the Mass, call on the name
of Mary in the hope that perhaps you will be saved in the end?
If you trust in Jesus Christ and rest on His once-for-all
sacrifice on the cross for the forgiveness of your sins, you
cannot continue to submit to a man, whoever he may be, who by reason
of his office usurps the title of Head of the Church and teaches a different gospel.
Christians acknowledge one head, the Lord Jesus: "Christ is
head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body"
The religion of the papacy cannot give you confidence to face eternity. Did you notice the contradiction in Archbishop Leonardo
Sandri's announcement of the Pope's death: “Our Holy Father John
Paul II has returned to the house of the Father. Let us pray for
him." Why should anyone pray for someone who is in the
Father's house? Catholics pray for the souls in purgatory, not for
the saints in glory. If he is in heaven, he needs no prayer for the
repose of his soul, and no masses in suffrage for his soul. But the
Catholic religion cannot give assurance of salvation, not even to
her "Holy Father"!
Thank God for the comfort and assurance of the Gospel:
"Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in
Paradise" (Luke 23:43). The day a believer in Jesus dies, that
same day he or she will certainly be with the Lord forever! Praise
Habemus Papam! Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the former head of the
Inquisition, has been elected as the new Pope - Benedict XVI. Over
one billion Catholics worldwide rejoiced for their new Holy Father,
new Pontiff, and new Infallible Teacher.
On the other hand Christians have the same Holy Father we had
from the beginning, and He will remain with us forevermore. Our
Father does not grow old and die, nor is he succeeded by a new one.
Our Father is in heaven, the great I AM, immortal and eternal. We
don't have a list of popes to show; we only have one Father, the
true and living God.
Christians still have the same Pontiff, the same mediator, whom
God had appointed from eternity. His name is the Lord Jesus Christ.
Unlike mere mortal men, our High Priest, having died once for all,
is alive forever. "There were many priests, because they were
prevented by death from continuing. But He, because He continues
forever, has an unchangeable priesthood. Therefore He is also able
to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He
always lives to make intercession for them" (Hebrews 7:23-25).
Christians have the same Infallible Teacher, the Holy Spirit,
whom our glorified Lord sent to be with His church forever. He
convicts the world of sin because the world does not believe in
Jesus, the Son of God. He does not give a false hope of salvation by
teaching people to call on the name of Mary, or by assuring those
who deny the Sonship of Jesus -- the Judaists and Muslims -- that
they too may be saved. The Spirit declares: "There is no other
name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved"
Christians have one Father, Mediator and Teacher - the Triune God
- and we give Him our complete allegiance, our adoration, our very
heart and soul. That is why we reject the arrogant claims of the
Catholics awake! Who is your Holy Father, your Pontiff, and your
Teacher? Is He the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit? If not, he
is an impostor. You must choose between the ETERNAL and the NEW; the
TRUE and the COUNTERFEIT.