Catholicism

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Christian Heroes and Martyrs. (1895) Massacre of Protestants at Béziers by Catholics during the Albigensian Crusade. (1209 A.D.)

Roman Catholicism was instituted in A.D. 313 by Emperor Constantine I's Edict of Milan and formalized in A.D. 380 by Roman Emperor Theodosius I's Edict of Thessalonica as a way to destroy Christianity. Before that, Rome had tried unsuccessfully to stamp out Christianity in defense of government power over the people and to protect its pagan traditions by lining up crucified Christians all along its highways, feeding them to lions, seizing their property, and imprisoning them to work in underground mines for the rest of their lives. That wasn't working, people continued to become Christians. Therefore, Rome declared Catholic 'Christianity' the state religion but only pardoned Christians who swore allegiance to Rome, and confessed belief in the newly-created doctrine of the Trinity under the Nicene Creed.

Thus Rome, realizing it could not defeat Christianity through outright persecution, chose to defeat it through deception by declaring Christianity the state religion under Emperor Theodosius I. The real Christians continued to be persecuted (Donatists, Montanists, Novatians, Arians, etc.) In essence, Protestants are the real Christians, and Catholicism a continuation of the Roman Empire's paganism in the guise of Christianity. The Catholic Church considered Donatists (311-750) heretics, per the Council of Arles (314 A.D.), because they criticized false Christians who had rejected Christianity during the Diocletian Persecution (traditors). Catholicism was thus defined early on by its support for traitors who rejected Christianity.

Those who believed Jesus and God the Father were separate entities, and that Jesus was the first-born of creation (a created being rather than eternal, according to Colossians 1:15 and Revelation 3:14) were declared Arians and exterminated. This was only the beginning of Catholic persecutions of 'heretics.' The Novatians and Donatists, who both believed in re-baptizing rather than infant baptism, were also persecuted. That the real continuation of Christianity was through the Donatists, Montanists, Waldenses, Cathar, Albigenses, etc., long before the Protestant Reformation, has been taught since at least 1851 by Landmark Baptists, and was popularized in 1931 by J.M. Carroll's tract, the Trail of Blood. It is sometimes referred to as Baptist Successionism or Landmarkism, although it is applicable to Christians in general, not just Baptists.

Roman Catholicism was Satan's attempt to persecute real Christianity while removing popular appeal by creating a fake Christianity. This allowed Rome to continue persecuting the real Christians, giving itself justification for doing so (since now they were 'heretics' rather than 'Christians'), allowed it to preserve its pagan traditions under the guise of 'Christianity,' allowed it to attack all forms of real Christianity as heretical eliminating them wherever they'd sprout, and allowed it to retain power over government and the people (Catholic confession e.g. is a population control tactic).

History

Background: Roman Persecution

For the first several hundred years of its existence, Christianity was viciously oppressed by the Roman Empire, which fed Christians to lions, forced them to work as slaves in mines, and crucified them along highways, beginning primarily with the reigns of Claudius (41-54 A.D.) and Nero (54-68 A.D.). Nero in 64 A.D. blamed Christians for the fire that by many reports he himself had started. Nero had Christians fed to dogs and burned alive.[1] Persecution was particularly bad under Emperors Decius (249–251 A.D.) and Diocletian (284–305 A.D.), but there was empire-wide persecution under Emperors Trajan (98-117 A.D.), Marcus Aurelius (161–180 A.D.), Septimius Severus (193–211 A.D.), and Valerian. (253–260 A.D.)[2]

Galerius

This persecution did not finally begin coming to an end until Emperor Galerius (305-311 A.D.) declared an Edict of Toleration ceasing the persecution of Christians that had continued under his reign. Seeing that Christians insisted in their refusal to worship Roman gods, even when large numbers were killed and tortured, and facing an economic recession with Christianity continuing to grow in popularity despite Rome's persecution of it, Galerius officially stopped the Diocletian Persecution of Christians and restored previously confiscated property to them.[3]

"The emperors had therefore issued an edict (in 303), designed to bring the Christians into harmony with this ancient Roman tradition (veterum instituta). The effects were not those desired nor anticipated, for the number of Christians brought back into the pagan fold or eliminated (by the death sentence, imprisonment, exile, etc.) by no means equaled the total of those who continued to survive, firm in the faith. Furthermore, the affairs of state during the interval of persecution had not prospered as well as they might have: civil wars, usurpations, and conspiracies had occurred, the state finances were in a bad way, an economic depression existed, and the very life of the senior August was threatened by long-continued disease."
J.R. Knipfing, 1922[3]

Origin

Constantine and the Edict of Milan

Roman Catholicism essentially began with the Edict of Milan issued by Emperor Constantine I of the Roman Empire in 313 A.D., which established a policy of religious toleration and freedom for those who accepted the new Roman definition of Christianity (as will be seen, the real Christians were quickly declared heretics and persecuted).[4] Nonetheless, in spite of Constantine's claim of a vision of 'Christianity' causing him to convert, his sincerity is questioned by historians:

"Constantine’s ‘conversion’ poses problems for the historian. Although he immediately declared that Christians and pagans should be allowed to worship freely, and restored property confiscated during persecutions and other lost privileges to the Christians, these measures did not mark a complete shift to a Christian style of rule. Many of his actions seemed resolutely pagan. Constantine founded a new city named after himself: Constantinople. Christian writers played up the idea that this was to be a 'new Rome', a fitting Christian capital for a newly Christian empire. But they had to find ways to explain the embarrassing fact that in this new, supposedly Christian city, Constantine had erected pagan temples and statues."
-Sophia Lunn-Rockliffe, BBC News[1]

Thus Constantine, in accusing others of heresy, was in fact a heretic himself.

Council of Arles

Although the Council of Nicaea is better known, it was preceded by the Council of Arles; both of which were called by Emperor Constantine to address schisms in the Christian Church. The Council of Arles (314 A.D.) dealt with the Donatist Controversy. The Donatists were the dominant force in the Eastern Orthodox Church at the time, and insisted that Christians who had rejected the faith under persecution by Emperor Diocletian ('traditors' or traitors to the Christian faith) should not be allowed back into the Christian Church or recognized as clergy.[5][6] Thus the Catholic Church was initially defined, from its earliest beginnings, by its support for those who had betrayed the Christian faith.

"In 311 Caecilian was elected bishop, but he was opposed by many because he allowed himself to be consecrated by a traditor bishop (one who had surrendered copies of Scripture to the authorities during Emperor Diocletian’s persecution of Christians, beginning in 303). The primate of Numidia, Secundus of Tigisi, who had acquired in the previous 40 years the right of consecrating the bishop of Carthage, arrived in Carthage with 70 bishops and in solemn council declared Caecilian’s election invalid. The council then appointed a reader (lector), Majorinus, to replace Caecilian."
-Encyclopedia Britannica[7]
Council of Nicaea

The Council of Nicaea was convened in 325 A.D. by Emperor Constantine I to settle the Arian Controversy. The Arians insisted that Jesus was created by God the Father and that they were separate beings, consistent with Biblical teachings. In spite of this, Constantine originated the unBiblical and illogical doctrine of the Trinity, that God the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are the same identical being; and that Jesus was never created. Constantine and the Catholic Church responded by declaring the Arians heretics and creating the Nicene Creed to declare that God the Father, Jesus the Son of God, and the Holy Spirit are all a single being, despite the fact that Jesus repeatedly prayed to God the Father and taught His disciples that His Father was greater than He.[8]

The Trinity
See also Trinity

The doctrine of the Trinity, that Jesus, God the Father, and the Holy Spirit are the same identical being and that Jesus is eternal, is an unBiblical misunderstanding of what Jesus meant when He said He and His Father are one. Jesus also said at the same time that He, Christians, and His Father would be one as well. (John 17:21) Obviously both Jesus and God the Father are superior to us in authority. Oneness refers to an indwelling of spirit. Just as God's spirit indwelt Jesus while He was on Earth, even so Him and the Father's spirits indwell Christians, along with the Holy Spirit, so long as we love Jesus and do His commandments; leading us in the way of truth.

While Jesus as the Son of God is superior to the rest of creation, He is nonetheless still a created being, the "beginning of the creation of God" (Revelation 3:14) and "the firstborn of every creature, for by Him were all things created, that are in Heaven, and that are in Earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by Him, and for Him: and He is before all things, and by Him all things consist." (Colossians 1:16-17)

Revelation 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

John 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.

John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
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: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

John 16:27 For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.
28 I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.

John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
14 He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
15 All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

Colossians 1:12 ¶ Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:
16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.
19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;

The doctrine of the Trinity keeps us from knowing God's true nature, and respecting and coming to God the Father and Jesus, the Son of God, as they truly are. The doctrine of the Trinity disrespects both God the Father and Jesus, the Son of God, by denying the very existence of Jesus as an individual Being; it is the spirit of antichrist.

1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.

Theodosius I

The reign of Emperor Theodosius I, first as Emperor of the East from 379-92 A.D., and later as Emperor of both the East and West sides of the Roman Empire, marked the beginning of Roman Catholicism as the official religion of the Roman Empire. On February 27, 380 A.D. Theodosius proclaimed the Edict of Thessalonica declaring that Catholicism would be the new religion of the Roman Empire and that the Arians were heretics.[9] A year later in 381 A.D., Theodosius called the Second Ecumenical Council, also called the Council of Constantinople, declaring the Nicene Creed and the Doctrine of the Trinity to be the official creeds of the new Catholic Roman Empire.[10]

"Out of political as well as religious motives, he energetically undertook to bring about unity of faith within the empire. His position was improved by the fact that during 379 the followers of the Nicene Creed gained ground, whereupon Theodosius on February 28, 380, without consulting the ecclesiastical authorities, issued an edict prescribing a creed that was to be binding on all subjects. Only persons who believed in the consubstantiality of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were henceforth to be considered Catholic Christians, a designation that here appears for the first time in a document."
-Adam Lippold, Encyclopedia Britannica[9]

Nonetheless, Theodosius himself was no Christian. In 390 A.D. he was excommunicated for having 7,000 people killed in retaliation because the city dared to criticize his imprisonment of a charioteer. He ordered a chariot race, and when the crowd entered, had the gates locked and then his soldiers slaughtered the crowd indiscriminately. For this act he was temporarily excommunicated by Ambrose, the Bishop of Milan, until doing penance. He also persecuted the Arians.[9]

In essence, Emperors Constantine and Theodosius declared a fake religion in place of the real Christianity, preserving Roman paganism in the guise of Christianity, and continued persecuting the real Christians like the Donatists and Arians, who were now termed heretics.

Albigensian Crusade and Inquisition

That Protestantism began long before the Reformation is further evident from the Albigensian Crusade. The Crusades began in part as a war by Catholicism against Protestant Christians like the Waldenses, Cathar, and Albigensian. Catholicism had whole cities slaughtered in its attempt to destroy Biblical Christianity. This also included the infamous Inquisition.

"During the first season the Crusaders captured Béziers in the heart of Cathar territory and—following the instructions of a papal legate who allegedly said, “Kill them all. God will know his own,” when asked how the Crusaders should distinguish the heretics from true Christians—massacred almost the entire population of the city. With the exception of Carcassonne, which held out for a few months, much of the territory of the Albigeois surrendered to the Crusaders. Command of the Crusade was then given to Simon, lord of Montfort and earl of Leicester, who had served during the Fourth Crusade (1202–04)."
-Encyclopedia Britannica[11]

List of Christian Groups Persecuted by Catholicism

There were actually numerous Christian groups persecuted by Catholicism as heretics long before the Reformation, a little-known fact, as seen from the "Trail of Blood" chart by J.M. Carroll, including Montanists, Novatians, Puritans (no relation to 17th century group), Cathar, Donatists, Paulicians, Henricians, Arnoldists, Albigenses, and Waldenses.[12] The following list is sorted chronologically by when Christian groups began:

2nd Century

Montanists

A.D. 150-800. Believed God continued giving revelation to the Church. They were the first to call the Holy Spirit God. They emphasized fasting and rejected remarriage after divorce, consistent with Jesus' teachings (Matthew 5:32) but angering Catholicism. Tertullian defended them. [13]

3rd Century

Novatians

A.D. 254-600. Denied readmission of Christians who denied their faith and sacrificed to pagan deities. They also said remarriage was wrong after divorce. For this they were considered heretics and stamped out. According to Catholic sources, they also held similar beliefs to the Arians in considering Jesus created and subject to God the Father. They called themselves Puritans (no relation to later group in 16th century). [14]

4th Century

Donatists

A.D. 311-750. Considered Roman Catholicism the "Church of Judas'. Like the Novatians, they said those who had denied the Christian faith under persecution should not be re-admitted, and were traitors. They rejected infant baptism, and thus practiced rebaptism, a serious crime by Catholicism's standards.[15][6]

Arians

A.D. 320-671. Claimed Jesus was created and separate from God the Father. Catholicism instituted the Nicene Creed declaring a Trinity and that Christ was eternal and born of a virgin, in response. Their books were burned, they were killed, and much of what we know about them is written by their enemies. Judaism views them somewhat favorably because they did not seek to persecute Jews when in power.[16]

7th Century

Paulicians

A.D. 650-950. They rejected worship of Mary, saints, the cross, and Mass, and believed everyone should be able to freely study the Bible for themselves. Like many others they were accused of Dualism, considering a good God vs. an evil one of the world, and opposition to the materialism Catholicism worshiped.[17]

9th Century

Waldenses

A.D. 800-Present. They created a non-Latin translation of the Bible, enraging the Catholic Church, who spent centuries trying to massacre them out of existence. They emphasized poverty and rejected Indulgences, Purgatory, prayer for the dead, popes, holy water, refused to take oaths, and considered Roman Catholicism the Harlot of Babylon.[18]

10th Century

Bogamils

A.D. 950-1900. Dualists, rejected worship of the cross and emphasis on external church buildings.[19]

12th Century

Cathar

A.D. 1100 - Present. Also called Paterines. Believed in Dualism, that the God of the Bible is opposed by a god of this world, Satan (Biblical - 2 Corinthians 4:4, John 12:31, 16:11). They believed in poverty, rejected priesthood and church buildings, and refused to swear oaths (Biblical - see Matthew 5:34, James 5:12). Despite the Albigensian Crusade, which killed some 500,000 of them, remnants have survived to the present day.[20]

Albigenses

A.D. 1100-1350. Believed in Dualism, a good God vs. an evil one of this world, Satan, and condemned Catholic "corruption, ritualistic pomp, and superficiality". While they disagreed with Judaism, they coexisted peacefully. Were destroyed in one of the bloodiest massacres in Catholic history, the Albigensian Crusades.[21]

Petrobrussians

A.D. 1100-1250. Also called Henricians. Rejected an outward visible church, said the real church was in the hearts of all believers. Rejected infant baptism, crucifix worship, prayer to the dead, and Mass/the Eucharist.[22]

Arnoldists

A.D. 1136-1200: Founded by Arnold of Brescia. Rejected infant baptism and material possessions.[23]

Catholic Doctrines

The following is an examination of Catholic doctrines:

Revelation 17-18

The most explicit reference to Roman Catholicism is found in Revelation chapters 17-18 which discuss a "great city" which would fall away from God, persecute Christians across all ages, and ultimately be destroyed by God at the last. The city's name? Babylon, what the early Christian Church called Rome.

Verse Analysis

If there's any doubt, it is specifically said to be a great city in 17:18 ("And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.") built on 7 mountains as specified in 17:9. ("And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth.") Rome of course is worldwide recognized for "The Seven Hills of Rome". It is symbolized by a great whore with fancy clothing, a cup full of abominations, and on whose forehead is written, "Mystery: Babylon The Great - The Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth". (17:1-6)

Other features of Babylon mentioned are:

  • Drunk with the blood of saints, martyrs of Jesus, prophets, and all those slain upon the earth. (17:6; 18:20,24)
  • Rules over peoples, multitudes, nations, and languages. (17:15; 18:3) By its sorceries were all nations deceived. (18:23) Rules over the kings of the earth. (17:2,18; 18:3,9)
  • Out of it will come the Beast, more commonly called the Antichrist, which will be worshiped by all non-Christians on the earth in the final world empire. (17:8) The Beast will be the 8th in a lineage (kings?) and ten previously kingdomless kings will receive power as kings under the Beast, to serve him, only to be destroyed by the returning Christ. (17:9-14)
  • It is a great merchant city by the sea to be mourned by merchants and shipmasters for their loss of trade in gold, silver, jewels, pearls, clothing, thyine wood, ivory, bronze, iron, marble, spices, ointments, wine, oil, flour, wheat, cattle, chariots, slaves, and souls of men. (18:3,11-19)
  • Said to be the home of devils, foul spirits, and cage to every unclean and hateful bird. (18:2)
  • Christians are a part of it, and commanded to "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues, for her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities." (18:4-5)
  • Known for its harpers and musicians, including pipers and trumpeters, as well as for its craftsmen. (18:22)
  • To be utterly destroyed with death, mourning, and famine; burned by fire (which Rome was in A.D. 64) and no more found at all. (17:16; 18:8,21)

In all my years of examining Catholic doctrines, I'm not sure I've found a single one yet that actually comes even close to teaching what the Bible does. Not one.

Racism in the Catholic 'New Advent' Encyclopedia

See also Racism in New Advent

There is a popular online encyclopedia that Catholics love to cite called 'New Advent.' Unfortunately, it is filled throughout with racist commentary, so I refuse to cite it or consider it a reputable source.


Sources

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