Category: The Church

Pope Francis Resignation Would Precede the Apocalypse, Ancient Prophecy Predicts

© REUTERS / Yara Nardi

14:39 20.12.2019(updated 14:58 20.12.2019) Get short URL

by Egor Efimchik

The Pontiff has not yet announced any plans to step down, but a journalist working with the Vatican has claimed that it could happen as early as next year.

A centuries-old apocryphal prophecy foretells the end of times after the last pope. The same text says Pope Francis could be that last one.

The Prophecy of the Popes is a list of 112 popes and antipopes in succession. It was first published in 1595 by monk Arnold Wion in Lignum Vitæ, a book on the history of the Benedictine order.

Wion attributed it to Saint Malachy, the 12th-century Irish saint and Archbishop of Amragh. According to a later account, the manuscript with Malachy prophecy was stored in the Vatican archives but was forgotten until its rediscovery in 1590.

The text contains (often metaphoric) mottos/descriptions of pontiffs; the first description on the list is widely believed to be attached to Pope Celestine II (1143-1144). If those descriptions are matched one by one with the list of his successors, Pope Francis would be the last, 112th pope. According to the prophecy, the last pope is identified as ‘Peter the Roman’.

This is what it says of his papacy: “Peter the Roman, who will pasture his sheep in many tribulations, and when these things are finished, the city of seven hills will be destroyed, and the dreadful judge will judge his people. The End.”

The penultimate pope on the list is described as ‘glory of the olive’. Proponents of the prophecy view it as a reference to Benedict XVI, Francis’s predecessor, who chose his papal name after Saint Benedict of Nursia. The latter was the founder of the Benedictine order, which comprises the Olivetans.

As for Francis himself, there is a far-fetched theory that ‘Peter the Roman’ has a connection with Saint Francis of Assisi, whose father was named Pietro (Peter).

Is this prophecy to be believed?

There is no historical consensus on the veracity of the text, but several researchers have pointed to the fact that the verses referring to popes who reigned up until around 1590 are very accurate (they often refer to papal heraldry), but the descriptions for the popes that follow are rather vague. This means the prophecy was likely forged around the time it was published, which could explain the rapid decline in accuracy.

Malachy’s biographer and contemporary, Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, has left no mention of the prophecy. An Irish priest named O’Brien, who wrote an 1880 monograph on the text, believed that it was based on a 1557 list of popes that included their heraldry.

O’Brien said: “It is impossible to attribute such absurd triflings … to any holy source. Those who have written in defence of the prophecy … have brought forward scarcely an argument in their favour. Their attempts at explaining the prophecies after 1590 are, I say with all respect, the sorriest trifling.”

Why would Pope Francis want to resign?

Pope Francis (born Jorge Mario Bergoglio) took the Catholic Church in 2013, following the resignation of Benedict XVI, then 86 years of age, due to declining health. Roman popes typically reign from election until death, with Benedict becoming the first pontiff to relinquish the office in around 600 years.

Francis, now 83, has not given any word so far on whether he would ever resign. However, Catholic journalist Austen Ivereigh, who authored Pope Francis’ biography, claimed in 2015 that Pope could step down as early as next year.

He said in a TV interview: “I don’t think there’s ever been any doubt that that’s what he’s gonna do (resign in 2020).”

“He made clear from the beginning that he regarded Pope Benedict’s act as a prophetic act of great humility and he would have absolutely no problem in doing the same.”

“What was interesting was that he said to Mexican television [in 2014] that he believed that he would have a short papacy he thought of about five years.

“But what I’m hearing now from people close to him is that he’s going to need seven years to achieve his five-year plan and that, of course, would mean staying on until 2020.”

Pope Francis also faced calls to resign last year in the wake of massive sex scandals that have rocked the Church. Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano wrote an open letter claiming that he had informed Pope Francis about sexual assault allegations against Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, but the Pope turned a blind eye to them.

“In this extremely dramatic moment for the universal Church,” Vigano wrote, “[Pope Francis] must acknowledge his mistakes and, in keeping with the proclaimed principle of zero tolerance, Pope Francis must be the first to set a good example to Cardinals and Bishops who covered up McCarrick’s abuses and resign along with all of them.”

Several senior figures in the Catholic Church criticised Vigano’s accusations as unsubstantiated, while Pope Francis maintained that he “knew nothing” about McCarrick’s crimes. “I don’t remember if [Vigano] told me about this,” he said. “If it’s true or not. No idea! But you know that about McCarrick, I knew nothing. If not, I wouldn’t have remained quiet, right?”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10351

Popular End Times Televangelist Jack Van Impe Dies at 88-Years-Old

Kayla Koslosky | ChristianHeadlines.com Editor | Monday, January 20, 2020

Controversial yet wildly popular end times televangelist Jack Van Impe has died at the age of 88.

Jack Van Impe Ministries International confirmed the passing of the eschatological pastor in a statement on Saturday calling him a “good and faithful servant.” 

“The beloved Dr. Jack Van Impe was welcomed into Heaven by His blessed Savior and Lord who he had so faithfully served in ministry for over 70 years,” the statement read.

“Please pray for his beloved wife and lifelong ministry partner Rexella and their families as they grieve this immense loss and for wisdom as she and the Board lead the ministry in the days ahead.”

Van Impe – often referred to as the “walking Bible” for his expansive memorization of Bible verses – first gained popularity through his television show Jack Van Impe Presents in the late 80s and 90s. The show – which starred both him and his wife Rexella – featured a controversial segment of the couple analyzing current news headlines through the lens of the second coming and end times prophecies. 

According to Christianity Today, Van Impe was no stranger to controversy. Reportedly, after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the television pastor became increasingly worried about Islam. During Barack Obama’s presidency, Van Impe even claimed that Obama was part of a Muslim plot to infiltrate the United States. 

Then in 2011, Van Impe had a falling out with Christian TV network, Trinity Broadcasting Network. Van Impe reportedly split from TBN after the network refused to air an episode of his show where he claims megachurch pastors Rick Warren and Robert Schuller were secretly promoting Chrislam – a new religion mixing Christianity and Islam. 

Nonetheless, the show continued independently with its last episode airing on January 10, 2020.

Amid his passing, popular conservative evangelical leader Franklin Graham offered his condolences to the family. 

Graham wrote on Twitter, “Our condolences go out to Rexella Van Impe as news comes about the death of her husband, evangelist Jack Van Impe.

“He was among a large number of young men who served in the early days with Youth for Christ. Dr. Van Impe became known as “The Walking Bible” because he memorized large portions of Scripture, inspiring young people to do the same.”

Graham concluded noting that he hopes more people can be inspired by Van Impe’s dedication to the word. 

“His life demonstrated the importance of “laying up these words of Mine in your heart and in your soul” (Deuteronomy. 11:18). May we all be inspired to do the same,” he wrote.

Further details are yet to be released regarding Van Impe’s celebration of life.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10345

3 Biblical Reasons Christians Should Say No to the Enneagram

2:00PM EST 1/1/2020 Rosilind Jukic

If you don’t know what an Enneagram is, don’t feel dumb or alone. A lot of people are still unfamiliar with the Enneagram.

In fact, I had never heard of it until a few months ago when I saw someone post about it on social media.

Shortly after that, I saw several articles pop up about how it can help your marriage, how it can help your walk with God and even a pastor who took several weeks to preach a series of Sunday sermons on the Enneagram to his congregation.

That’s when I realized I needed to know more about this really funny word.

The Enneagram isn’t something new; it’s just in the past couple of years that it’s gained traction among Christians. It teaches that there are nine different personality types.

What makes the Enneagram concerning from the start are its origins in the occult, divination and New Age. This article from The Gospel Coalition delves into the occultic background, and I encourage you to read it for yourself.

3 Biblical Reasons Christians Should Say No to the Enneagram

Beyond the sketchy origins of the Enneagram (something Christians should absolutely take into consideration), there are other reasons why we should reject the urge to join this new fad in the church.

Over the past few months, my dad (Dr. Hackett and author of the blog “Foundational“)and I have been writing about our concern about the direction the evangelical church is heading.

There is a growing love affair with New Age ideas, hedonism, Gnosticism, spiritism and extra-biblical revelation.

Because we have a form of godliness, but deny its power, we have to find that power in other places:

So we create adrenaline-charged atmospheres in our churches. We become fascinated by New Age doctrines.

We practice energy healing. We preach self-help, self-care and how to live your best life now.

We obsess over preachers and evangelists of the past, visit their graves, take pilgrimages to their churches, engage in necromancy and pray for their mantles.

We “Christianize” yoga, meditation, centering and other Eastern religious activities.

All because our godliness being void of power has created a vacuum that demands something something for which we have determined that God, the Bible and the Holy Spirit are not enough. Blasphemous.

It is worse than blasphemous, because we expect unbelievers to deny God and His power, because by their very definition, they do not believe in Him.

But the light that is in us has become darkened, because by our very definition we should believe, and we don’t.

We lie. We blaspheme. We declare God’s power and deny it at the very same time. But then we go a step further and march right into the devil’s territory and borrow His sulfur-saturated, evil, twisted, distorted, and demonic ideas and try to worship God with them.

I would like to add that researching Enneagrams has caused me to consider why Christians are so preoccupied with personality tests at all.

We spend a lot of time filling out questionnaires that tell us about ourselves, doing those silly Facebook quizzes and pondering whether we’re introvert, extrovert or somewhere in between.

I know. I have done this very thing.

But preparing for this article has given me a whole new perspective on this and it is central to the danger I find not only in Enneagrams, but in this entire quest to know who we are.

1. Christians should say no to Enneagrams because their identity is in Christ.

The very first danger I see with Enneagrams is the quest to know who we are.

This is a natural question every human, at one point or another, asks themselves: “Who am I?” God created us with this deep need to find our identity. And He simultaneously created the answer: Himself.

When we discover our true identity in Jesus Christ, we have no need for personality tests, quizzes, Enneagrams, Myers-Briggs—all of which have, at one point or another, been proven as scientifically inaccurate.

Of course they are! Human psychological study will never be so advanced as to answer the plaguing question: “Who am I?”

The temptation to identify ourselves as introvert or extrovert; melancholy or sanguine; judging or perceiving; or any of these personality types is great. We get a false sense of knowing ourselves and understanding others. But we will only ever truly know ourselves when we seek to know God. The more we know who God is, the better we see ourselves for who we really are.

More importantly, the more we glorify God in our lives, the less our significance and self-awareness matters to us.

2. Christians should say no to Enneagrams because self-awareness is a trap.

I am deeply concerned with how much the church has begun to shift its focus off God, His sovereignty, and His supreme glory and on to self:

—Self-care.

—Self-help.

—Self-actualization.

—Self-awareness.

In other words, self-glorification.

The idea of “self” in general flies in the face of God’s Word that commands us, “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself” (Phil. 2:3, NKJV).

Self-awareness has its roots in ancient philosophy that denies God and His supremacy in our lives.

As Christians, we are not called to be self-aware; we’re called to be God-aware!

When we become God-aware, our identity comes into proper alignment, and we understand that we are: Lost, Helpless, Corrupt, Not good (Rom. 3:10), Chosen, Adopted, Redeemed and Made new.

What more do we need to know? In other words, our self-awareness cannot help us. Apart from God, we are nothing and nobody; we cannot redeem or cleanse ourselves. When we are aware of this, if our natural inclination isn’t to turn to God, but to try to help ourselves, we will spend the rest of our lives in futility.

Once we come to a proper view of ourselves, our only hope is to become God-aware and find a new identity and awareness in Him!

3. Christians should say no to the Enneagram because it is rooted in the counsel of the ungodly.

Psalm 1 tells us that we are blessed when we do not walk in the counsel of the ungodly. Why?

Because the mind of the unbeliever is unregenerate; it is filled with knowledge rooted in philosophies that deny God, His power and His very existence. While I know that this may seem extreme to some (perhaps many), if we calls ourselves Christians, we must allow God’s Word to dictate every decision and action of our lives. And His Word clearly says that we are blessed when we do not walk in the counsel, in the philosophy and in the advisement of the ungodly.

So using a personality test rooted in occult and New Age origins, attributing our identity and awareness of who are to it, and then allowing this newfound identity to determine our direction is dangerous. There is no blessing in that!

The Christian should, instead, turn to God’s Word, allowing it to reveal who we truly are apart from God—in all of its raw, rough, ugly detail, and then discover Christ’s solution to that problem. Through that, we will uncover our real identity.

When we become aware of who He really is, our own desire for affirmation and significance loses importance.

Once we come to this place, our direction is clear; the question of “Who am I?” is answered, and we have peace and security—the quest is over. And that vacuum we were born with is filled.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10336

Pope Francis Invites Freakish Circus With Scantily-Clad Women Doing Sexually Charged Dances To Perform In Reptile Shaped Vatican Hall

At the end of the General Audience, the “Aqua Circus” performers put on a show for the pope and pilgrims. Pope Francis participated in the spectacle by tossing a hoop at one of the acrobats. This circus presents itself as “the European response to ‘Cirque du Soleil.’” Its show proposes defending the environment. The artists tell the story of a mermaid and a man under the sea who fight against contamination of the ocean.

by Geoffrey Grider January 14, 2020

At the end of the General Audience, the “Aqua Circus” performers put on a show for the pope and pilgrims.

The Roman Catholic Church has always had a penchant for things that are odd, creepy, dark, weird and offbeat. Did you know that every Roman Catholic Church has a ‘relic‘ of a Catholic ‘saint’ built into the altar? Do you know what a relic is? It is a body part. How’s that for weird, creepy and sinister? The Bible calls this type of behavior necrophilia, or necromancy, and it is forbidden in both Testaments. The Vatican loves dead things, and creepy things, and perverted things. Things like the circus that Pope Francis invited to the reptilian Audience Hall on January 8, 2020.

“Abstain from all appearance of evil.” 1 Thessalonians 5:22 (KJV)

As you will see in the video below, this circus is the stuff of nightmares complete with creepy performers doing creepy things. But this is the Vatican, so you might expect it to be sexually charged as well, and it certainly was that. You can’t make this stuff up, people, and the truth about the Roman Catholic Church is always wilder than fiction. Speaking of wild, after the video, take a moment to read about the reptile room in the Vatican where all this creepiness and perversion takes place.

Pope Francis participates in circus act during General Audience

FROM ROME REPORTS: At the end of the General Audience, the “Aqua Circus” performers put on a show for the pope and pilgrims. Pope Francis participated in the spectacle by tossing a hoop at one of the acrobats.

This circus presents itself as “the European response to ‘Cirque du Soleil.’” Its show proposes defending the environment. The artists tell the story of a mermaid and a man under the sea who fight against contamination of the ocean. READ MORE

Why Was The Papal Audience Hall Building At The Vatican Constructed In The Shape Of A Giant Reptile?

This is the building where Pope Francis watched the creepy circus perform in. It’s called the Papal Audience Hall building, and as you can see, the building inside and out is in the shape of a giant snake. Have a look at the image below and compare its shape to the image of a snake beside it. Note the overall shape — wide back, narrow, rounded front, eyes in the middle, nostril at the front, and curved top. So even from the outside and viewed from the sky, the entire building is a dead-ringer for a snake’s head.

The Papal Audience Hall in Vatican City as viewed from the sky and compared with a reptile.

When the building is viewed from the inside, the unmistakable resemblance to a reptile hits you like a ton of bricks. A ton of dark, evil and very sinister bricks.

The Papal Audience Hall in Vatican City as viewed from the inside and compared to a reptile.

Just when you thought it couldn’t possible get much worse, it does. Way worse. Right behind the pope’s throne, they installed a statue created by Pericle Fazzini in 1977 that purports to show Jesus Christ rising up from an ‘atomic apocalypse’, and looking for all the world like a scene from ‘Night Of The Living Dead’ zombie movie. And if you look closely at the top of the “Jesus” head, you will see something quite interesting indeed.

The demonic and massive statue of Jesus turning into a reptile by Pericle Fazzini

You will notice that the “head of Jesus” has his hair blowing in the breeze or some such thing, but if you look closer it is more than that. The head of Jesus is turning into…(anyone care to hazard a guess here?)…a reptile. What is the importance of that? Well, you read this verse and then you tell me what it means.

“And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” Genesis 3:14,15 (KJV)

In the Bible, Satan is pictured as a reptile who will have a coming war with King Jesus at the Battle of Armageddon at the Second Coming. Revelation shows us that the Genesis serpent had an ‘upgrade’ along the way and now is a giant, red-headed multi-headed dragon, though still a reptile.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10327

How The Followers Of The Roman Catholic Church Are Blinded To The Fact That Their Religion Is Really Old Testament Idol Worship

With this novena, the faithful implore the Holy Infant of Prague for His intercession in temporal and spiritual needs. When former Pope Benedict XVI visited the Prague church where the Infant Jesus is kept, he said he thought the image demonstrated God’s closeness and love through His child-like tenderness. He specifically prayed for children who are victims of violence and different forms of abuse, and he also prayed for broken and unfaithful families.

by Geoffrey Grider December 12, 2019

The Catholic News Herald invites you to pray the nine-day Holy Infant of Prague novena with us this Advent as we prepare for Christmas.

When I was a lost Roman Catholic, it seemed like the most natural thing in the world to say a prayer to St. Jude when something seemed hopeless, or to St. Anthony when I lost something and couldn’t find it. Of course, as a good Catholic, the bulk of my prayers were to be directed to the ‘Virgin Mother‘ Mary who could seemingly solve any problem. It wasn’t until after I got saved in 1991 that I realized that all of that, with the beads, statues and candles, was nothing more than idol worship condemned in both Testaments as an abomination before God.

“And there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the LORD carried away before them; and wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger: For they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing.” 2 Kings 17:11,12 (KJV)

God can absolutely save a Roman Catholic, just as He saved me all those years ago, but here is the point I need to make. The Roman Catholic Church instructs, invites and even commands their followers to pray to idols like the Holy Infant of Prague you see in today’s story. Look closely at the photo and see the “2-finger salute” that little baby idol Holy Infant of Prague is making. That is the same 2-finger sign made by all popes and by the soldiers in Nazi Germany. It is a sign of war, of attack and of conquest. Who is the target? You.

“Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:10-12 (KJV)

We invite you to not pray to the Holy Infant of Prague and instead pray to Someone who can not only actually hear you but who can also answer you as well. His name is Jesus Christ, and He is the one and only person you should be praying to. Anything else is idol worship. The Holy Infant of Prague can’t hear a word you’re saying.

Pray the Holy Infant of Prague nine-day novena, Dec. 16-24

FROM THE CATHOLIC NEWS HERALD: This novena is rich in Church history and is prayed for nine consecutive days starting on Dec. 16 and ending on the vigil of the Feast of the Nativity, Dec. 24.

With this novena, the faithful implore the Holy Infant of Prague for His intercession in temporal and spiritual needs. When former Pope Benedict XVI visited the Prague church where the Infant Jesus is kept, he said he thought the image demonstrated God’s closeness and love through His child-like tenderness. He specifically prayed for children who are victims of violence and different forms of abuse, and he also prayed for broken and unfaithful families.

The two finger salute is a sign that is satanic in origin, and wherever and whenever it is used it is always a “bad sign”. The connection between both the Nazis and the Vatican using this sign gets especially more evil when you consider how the Vatican not only signed a pact with Hitler, they also helped thousands of Nazis to escape through Switzerland after WWII.

WHY DO BOTH ROMAN CATHOLIC POPES AND NAZI SOLDIERS MAKE THE TWO-FINGER ‘PEACE SIGN’ SALUTE?

Devotion to the Holy Infant of Prague began in the 16th century. In April 1639, the Swedish army began a siege of the city of Prague. The frightened citizens hurried to the shrine of the Infant Jesus of Prague as services were held day and night at the Church of Our Lady of Victories. When the army decided instead to retreat, the Discalced Carmelite monks who took care of the statue and the grateful residents ascribed their rescue to the miraculous Holy Infant.

The statue has also merited papal recognition through Pope Leo XIII, who instituted the “Sodality to the Infant Prague of Jesus” in 1896. On March 30, 1913, Pope St. Pius X further organized the “Confraternity of the Infant Jesus of Prague.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10256

23,000 Cambodians Hear the Gospel, More than 1,300 Give Their Lives to Christ at Franklin Graham Festival

Michael Foust | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Tuesday, December 10, 2019

23,000 Cambodians Hear the Gospel, More than 1,300 Give Their Lives to Christ at Franklin Graham Festival

More than 23,000 heard the Gospel and 1,396 made the decision to give their live to Christ during a two-day Franklin Graham Festival over the weekend in Cambodia, a nation that is 98 percent Buddhist.

“Did you know that you have a soul?” Graham asked the crowd. “One day you will die, but your soul continues to live. Your soul will live in the presence of God, or it will be separated from God. The decision you make tonight will decide where your soul will spend eternity.”

The “Love Phnom Penh Festival with Franklin Graham” was held Dec. 7-8 in the same country where Christianity was nearly eliminated during the Khmer Rouge – a genocide in the 1970s that sought to eliminate religion and develop a “master race”  under the leadership of Pol Pot. It was the focus of the film The Killing Fields. An estimated 2 million people died, and only about 200 Christians survived the atrocities, according to a press release. Missionaries fled during the genocide. 

Local Christian leaders say the Festival had a major impact. It was the largest Christian outreach ever in the country, with 23,700 attending, Christian Newswire reports

“The Holy Spirit has touched our city and entire land. We are thankful that people heard the Gospel that Jesus is the Truth, Way and Life,” said Sin Somnang, pastor of Fellowship Church of Pochentong and the Festival’s general chairman. “This will be a blessing for our country and our spiritual legacy to be remembered for the next generation through the Festival.”

Among those who made a decision for Christ was 59-year-old Chhimreth. She had heard of Jesus before, but had not made Him Lord of her life.

“I feel very happy and joyful,” Chhimreth said through a translator. 

Local churches will follow up with those who made decisions.

“We pray this [Festival] will open the door for more of the Lord’s work in the future,” Graham said.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10250

Speculation Is Rising That A Jesuit Takeover Of The Roman Catholic Church Is Underway With Pope Francis Leading The Charge From Vatican City

The Society of Jesuits has been the object of considerable suspicion from more traditional religious orders and from sections of the Catholic laity. Pope Paul IV, who served from 1555 to 1559, described the Society’s internal structure as a tyranny, and in a difficult and bad-tempered exchange with the second superior general of the Jesuits, he alleged that if they did not begin the choral recitation of the office, one day “Satan would arise from their ranks.”

by Geoffrey Grider December 3, 2019

Speculation has arisen lately about the status of the Society of Jesus, now that the highest office in the Church is held by a member of the Jesuits.

One reason why Pope Francis is such an excellent candidate for either the False Prophet or the Antichrist is because he is a Jesuit, and the Jesuits are the George Soros of the Roman Catholic Church. They are a secret society that has been the brains behind more mayhem than you could shake a stick at. In fact, they once hatched a plot to assassinate King James of England in order to try and stop the King James Bible from being produced, but happily they were unsuccessful. Guy Fawkes Day commemorates that occasion every year.

“For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.” Revelation 19:2,3 (KJV)

In 1540, Pope Paul III officially accepted “The Society of Jesus” (Jesuits) into the Roman Catholic system. Today, the Jesuit General, is respected and feared by every Jesuit as God Himself. It is neither a secret nor a conspiracy theory that the Jesuit Pope Francis has not only been remaking the Roman Catholic Church, but creating the One World Religion as well. A Jesuit takeover of the Vatican led by Pope Francis? It could absolutely be happening, and most likely is.

A Jesuit coup? Speculation rises of a Vatican takeover by the Pope’s own religious order

FROM LIFE SITE NEWS: Historically, the Society of Jesuits has been the object of considerable suspicion from more traditional religious orders and from sections of the Catholic laity. Pope Paul IV, who served from 1555 to 1559, described the Society’s internal structure as a tyranny, and in a difficult and bad-tempered exchange with the second superior general of the Jesuits, he alleged that if they did not begin the choral recitation of the office, one day “Satan would arise from their ranks.”

Famously, one of the greatest theological disputes in the history of the Church, the de Auxiliis controversy, was left unresolved because of Pope Paul V’s fear that condemning the Jesuit theology of grace as heretical (as the older theological schools insisted that it was) would do irreparable harm to the society’s prestige, damaging the Counter-Reformation.

CLICK TO READ ALL ABOUT THE SECRET HISTORY OF THE JESUITS

The celebrated French author and mathematician, Blaise Pascal, reproached the society for having compromised the Augustinian doctrine of God’s grace and led their penitents into moral laxity.  Through the first two hundred years of its history, the society was adorned with many saints whose missionary labors were prodigious and who gave their lives for the Gospel and for the unity of the Church. Undoubtedly, the Jesuits struck fear into the hearts of Protestants and secular enemies of the Church.

In 1773, under huge pressure from so-called “Enlightened” despots then ruling Catholic Europe, Pope Clement XIV (a Franciscan) “forever annulled and extinguished” the Society of Jesus. In the period following their dissolution, certain theological positions dear to the Jesuits but less congenial to the more traditional schools sank beneath the waves, and in the words of Francis Sullivan, SJ, “hardly any Catholic theologians dared to question the traditional teaching.”

And yet, in 1814, in the wake of Napoleon’s defeat and abdication, Pius VII revived the Society, its dissolution being associated with the secularism that climaxed in the French Revolution.

“The public is practically unaware of the overwhelming responsibility carried by the Vatican and its Jesuits in the start of the two world wars — a situation which may be explained in part by the gigantic finances at the disposition of the Vatican and its Jesuits, giving them power in so many spheres, especially since the last conflict.” Edmond Paris

While the scale of the hostility among Catholics that existed before the dissolution did not revive, there remained a strong resistance to the appointment of Jesuits to senior positions in the Roman Curia, and to the election of a Jesuit as pope. The Jesuits in fact promise to spurn high ecclesial office unless compelled to accept it under obedience.

But in these days, concerns have been raised that, the ultimate glass ceiling having been broken, with a Jesuit upon the throne of St. Peter, all the lesser bastions are also giving way, or rather being given away.

In the wake of the Second Vatican Council, the Jesuits have become stalwarts of the new liberal conception of Catholicism and the hostility of former centuries among more conservative and traditional clergy, laity and religious has revived. Like the medieval tale of Prester John, the legend of the good Jesuit endures in the hearts of the faithful. Over the next hill and around the next bend he must exist, prostrated somewhere in a cave doing penance for the latest article of James Martin, with copious tears.

Journalist Joshua McElwee, Vatican correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter (NCR), has observed an increasing flow of Jesuits into prominent positions in the Roman Curia under Pope Francis. The Society’s formidable reputation has in the past created a general reluctance to concede to them the commanding heights of the papal administration. But now, McElwee alleges, that age is past. McElwee argues that a number of significant appointments under Francis, including the recent pick of Spanish Jesuit Father Antonio Guerrero Alves as prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, a post held until recently by Cardinal George Pell, have raised Jesuits to positions never before held in the Roman Curia.

Until now, Fr. Guerrero has served as Councilor to the Society’s Superior General, Fr. Arturo Sosa, and has overseen Jesuit houses in Rome, including the Gregorian, the Biblicum and the Pontifical Oriental Institute. In an interview with Vatican News following Guerrero’s appointment, Fr. Sosa said he asked the Pope that the appointment “not be associated with the episcopate,” so that Fr. Guerrero, 60, could “return, after finishing his mission, to his normal life as a Jesuit.”

According to McElwee’s reckoning, the only Jesuit ever previously to have held the rank of prefect in Rome was the late German Cardinal Augustin Bea, who “headed the Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity under Popes John XXIII and Paul VI from 1960-68.” One NCR source called Pope Francis’s choices “an anomaly and certainly not traditional,” while another argued that it is only natural for a pope to appoint “like-minded” men who “fit the model.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10234

We Are Now In The Midst Of The Great End Times Falling Away Of The Christian Church, And It Grows Uglier Every Day

On this episode of Rightly Dividing, we will explore the many prophecies in the King James Bible related to the end times falling away of the Christian Church. The Falling Away is not so much a falling into something, but a falling away from something that is very critical to the Body of Christ, and that is Bible doctrine. Charles Spurgeon once remarked that the “time will come when instead of pastors feeding the sheep, we will have clowns entertaining the goats”. I believe we have gathered enough evidence to prove that to now be the case. 

by Geoffrey Grider November 24, 2019

Charles Spurgeon once remarked that the “time will come when instead of pastors feeding the sheep, we will have clowns entertaining the goats”. I believe we have gathered enough evidence to prove that to now be the case.

Last week, we warned you about the very real possibility of an end times false revival breaking out within the Christian Church, one fueled in part by the intense popularity of Kanye West and his ‘Jesus Is King‘ album. Tonight we will show you proof that it is also highly likely that the great ‘falling away’ prophesied by both Jesus and the apostle Paul has already begun and indeed is well underway.

“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that 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.” 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5 (KJV) 

On this episode of Rightly Dividing, we will explore the many prophecies in the King James Bible related to the end times falling away of the Christian Church. The Falling Away is not so much a falling into something, but a falling away from something that is very critical to the Body of Christ, and that is Bible doctrine. Charles Spurgeon once remarked that the “time will come when instead of pastors feeding the sheep, we will have clowns entertaining the goats”. I believe we have gathered enough evidence to prove that to now be the case.

Groups like the LGBTQ+P for Pedophile Movement, Planned Parenthood, transgender activists, Drag Queen Story Hour and countless others have not only risen to power over the last few years, they are on the verge of seizing power. You may truly not be aware of how bad things really are, but after listening to this very important Bible study, you will not longer have the excuse of ignorance. I guarantee this particular will be an eye-opener, and it may even make you mad. But I would rather have you mad and awake, than happy, pacified and docile the way most of you are right now.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10215

The Enneagram is Getting More Popular Among Christians. That’s Bad.

Bad.

By Tom Gilson Published on October 31, 2019 • 237 Comments

Tom Gilson

My friend Dan told me recently he was thinking of leaving his church because they’d spent nine consecutive sermons on the Enneagram. Since then the same topic has popped up in at least four different places. I’ve done some research, and I’m alarmed at what I’m discovering.

The Enneagram is a personality test, much in the same vein as the Myers/Briggs Type Inventory, or the DiSC test. It claims to do more than they do, though. I’d heard of it long ago, and I did enough work on it then to have serious doubts about it on technical grounds. Research on its validity — essentially, whether it reliably measures what it claims to measure — was unimpressive, to say the least. My friend Jay Medenwalt has details on that.

That in itself ought to be of concern to Christians using it. “Validity” is psychometric tech-speak. Functionally, you could say another word for it is simply “truth.” An invalid instrument is one whose purported results aren’t quite telling the truth, in one way or another. That’s not to suggest the test’s creators were practicing deceit, only that the test results can’t be entirely trusted. Still it matters.

Yet Christians use it. My friend’s church is a fine one by every measure I’ve known. I’ve never attended it, but my son met his wife there. The mission group Cru, with which I served for 34 years, has taught “Going Deeper with the Enneagram.” One Cru staff seminar called it “awesome.” InterVarsity has apparently used it, too. Maybe they’re not so much in tune with psychometrics.

And honestly, I’m not a total stickler for validity myself, as long as tests like these are used appropriately. The popular DiSC test also lacks strict validation last time I checked. Still, I’ve found it useful as a conversation starter. I’ve used it to get team members talking with each other about their strengths, weaknesses, and relational styles. I put emphasis on starter there, though. I don’t encourage them to dwell too long on their test scores as if they told the complete and lasting truth about themselves.

The Enneagram’s Occult Origins

My friend Dan was up to speed on these matters. He had all of it in mind when he told me about the Enneagram being taught at his church. But then he dropped a bombshell: the Enneagram was birthed out of an occult vision.

I looked into that, checking Marcia Montenegro’s website for my main source of information. (More than one knowledgeable friend has informed me she’s the go-to Christian thinker on this.) Turns out the occult-origin story is controversial, but the information I read makes it seem more than likely it’s true.

Says Montenegro:

A simple investigation into the Enneagram reveals that its theories of personality are based on esoteric teachings and an occult worldview. The clear origin and purpose of the Enneagram is to initiate a Gnostic spiritual awakening to one’s alleged true divine Self, which is in itself an occult initiation. This is the claim and goal of virtually all occult and New Age teachings.

Montenegro calls it the GPS: “Gnostic Path to Self.” Gnosticism was a secret-knowledge heresy that plagued Christianity in its first few centuries. It still lives on in various cults and occult groups today.

Further Research on Origins and Effect

And yet I still had to ask whether this concern might be overblown. The New Testament’s teaching on “food offered to idols” (Romans 14:14-23 and 1 Cor. 10:23-32) tells us it’s not an item’s origin but its content that matters. What also matters is the confusion it might create for onlookers. But setting that aside, the more I looked into it, the more the content itself appeared problematic.

Even if it seems “eerily accurate,” as some people have said, it’s not worth staking any decisions on it.

Amazon only appears to offer one book on it written especially for Christians, which is not self-published: The Sacred Enneagram: Finding Your Unique Path to Spiritual Growth by Christopher L. Heuertz, with a foreword by Richard Rohr, published by Zondervan. Richard Rohr calls himself Christian, but he teaches an unorthodox universalist/evolutionary mysticism instead. That sets the book off to a bad start.

The “Sacred” Enneagram?

In a book trailer, author Heuertz describes the book in terms that continue to raise issues. He says the Enneagram “found me” and gave him “clarity” on “what it looks like to find our way home.” This is giving a human-created instrument of dubious origins way too much spiritual credence.

There’s more. It’s about “excavating essence,” for “self-liberation,” he says. It does what we can’t do for ourselves, which is to “self-observe.” It’s even “sacred,” he says, because it “moves beyond personality quirks … tethering us to our eccentricities and our foibles.” It’s about “nine inward journeys, nine inward paths back home to God.” It can help us “find our way back to the source of love that authentically defines us for who we are.”

That just about tipped it over the top for me. All this God intends to do for us through His Word, through prayer, through service, and through authentic, transparent Christian community. Not through an invalid self-report questionnaire, and not through one of “nine paths to God”! And especially not one with occult origins.

Still, I wanted to look at the book itself. On page 50, Heuertz seeks to answer Christian concerns about the Enneagram. The attempt is not, shall I say, very heartening:

Its role in bringing about a transformed life bears out its holy validity. And thanks in large part to the great work done by Father Richard [Rohr] and others to bring a Christian perspective to this ancient tool, evangelical seminaries and churches everywhere are incorporating the Enneagram into their curriculum.

I have serious trouble seeing how Rohr has influenced evangelicals with “a Christian perspective.” This is undiscerning at best. (I’ll leave it at that, to be as charitable as possible.)

Not Recommended

That answered my final question. I have to agree with my friend Dan, with Marcia Montenegro, and others who’ve raised serious concerns about the Enneagram. It doesn’t have psychometric validity, it has occult origins, and it doesn’t fall in the potentially innocent “meat offered to idols” category. Its main proponents in the Christian realm appear to be using it for purposes God clearly intended to be fulfilled in other ways.

So I’ve decided I’ll never use it, and I strongly advise others not to use it, either. If you’ve used the Enneagram, even if you come to different conclusions about its spiritual origins and impact, you should at least know that your “number” comes out of poorly developed testing practices. Even if it seems “eerily accurate,” as some people have said, it’s not worth staking decisions on it.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10204

Pope Francis Endorses Essay Trashing U.S. Conservative Christians

Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D.

27 Sep 20197,175

ROME — Pope Francis has publicly endorsed an essay that appeared in 2017 criticizing relations between Evangelicals and Catholics in the United States as an “ecumenism of hate.”

On Thursday, La Civiltà Cattolica journal released the transcript of a meeting between Pope Francis and a group of 24 Jesuits on September 5, 2019, during his recent trip to Mozambique in which the pope suggested that certain Evangelical Protestants in the United States “cannot really be defined as Christian.”

“Two important articles in Civiltà Cattolica have been published in this regard. I recommend them to you. They were written by Father Spadaro and the Argentinean Presbyterian pastor, Marcelo Figueroa. The first article spoke of the ‘ecumenism of hatred.’ The second was on the ‘theology of prosperity,’” the pontiff said.

“Reading them you will see that there are sects that cannot really be defined as Christian. They preach Christ, yes, but their message is not Christian,” the pope said. “It has nothing to do with the preaching of a Lutheran or any other serious evangelical Christianity.”

In the first essay recommended by the pope, the authors, who are both friends of Francis, slammed conservative Christians in the U.S. as ignorant, theocratic, Manichean, war-mongering fanatics.

For the “Evangelical right,” the authors proposed, the panorama of threats to the American way of life “have included modernist spirits, the black civil rights movement, the hippy movement, communism, feminist movements and so on. And now in our day there are the migrants and the Muslims.”

The authors did not hesitate to suggest that many Evangelicals are southern racists who reject climate change.

“Another interesting aspect is the relationship with creation of these religious groups that are composed mainly of whites from the deep American South,” the article stated. “There is a sort of ‘anesthetic’ with regard to ecological disasters and problems generated by climate change. They profess ‘dominionism’ and consider ecologists as people who are against the Christian faith.”

Throughout the essay, the authors criticize a string of exclusively Republican presidents as being tainted by the teachings of Evangelical Protestantism. The list of those mentioned includes Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush, and, of course, Donald Trump.

One of the most serious evils of American Evangelical Christians, the article stated, is “the defense of religious liberty,’” which takes the form of “a direct virtual challenge to the secularity of the state.”

The authors went on to denounce the ecumenical alliance between conservative Catholics and Evangelical Christians who align behind certain moral issues in the public square.

“Some who profess themselves to be Catholic express themselves in ways that until recently were unknown in their tradition and using tones much closer to Evangelicals. They are defined as value voters as far as attracting electoral mass support is concerned,” the article asserted.

This poisonous alliance over shared objectives “happens around such themes as abortion, same-sex marriage, religious education in schools and other matters generally considered moral or tied to values,” the essay claimed, which unite Catholics and Evangelicals in “the nostalgic dream of a theocratic type of state.”

At the time of its publication, the article triggered an avalanche of critical responses denouncing the ignorance and political ill-will underlying the essay.

Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, for instance, wrote a sharp criticism of the essay, saying that the authors were guilty of “dumbing down and inadequately presenting the nature of Catholic/evangelical cooperation on religious freedom and other key issues.”

“Dismissing today’s attacks on religious liberty as a ‘narrative of fear,’” as the La Civiltà Cattolica article does, Chaput said, “sounds willfully ignorant.”

In his critique of the article, Dr. Samuel Gregg called the article “disturbing,” while lamenting the tacit anti-Americanism and “distinctly amateur grasp of American religious history.”

As Dr. Gregg noted, to describe “Marxism-Leninism, Islamist jihadism, or National Socialism” as evil is not evidence of a Manichaean worldview. “It is simply recognition that some ideas are indeed wicked and lead to many people, even nations, engaging in gravely evil acts.”

Moreover, Gregg wrote, if one looks at statements put together by various scholars and intellectuals involved in movements such as Evangelicals and Catholics Together, “they contain not a shred of theocratic aspiration.”

“The ecumenical discussion between those involved in these endeavors have led over time to genuine fruit in terms of clarification of points in common, removing misconceptions, identifying real doctrinal road-blocks, and identifying areas where practical work to promote the common good can be pursued together,” Gregg observed.

It is not a theocratic nostalgia that leads Evangelical and Catholic Christians in America to make the argument that “unborn human beings are entitled to the same protections from the unjust use of lethal force as any other human being, or that religious liberty is more than just freedom of worship, or that parents are entitled to insist that their children not be subjected to the nonsense of ‘gender theory’ at school,” Gregg added.

The published criticisms of the original article by serious scholars, both Christian and secular, ended up being so numerous they could fill a book. The article was eventually dismissed as simply an embarrassing attempt at political propaganda by overly zealous Italian and Argentinian clerics who were completely out of their depth.

Which could lead one to wonder what Pope Francis could possibly be thinking when he dredges up this ill-begotten essay out of the swamp of oblivion to recommend it as a useful aid for understanding America’s complex religious landscape.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10096