Featured Pope as Antichrist

Discussion in 'Spiritual Warfare' started by Seeking_Thy_Kingdom, Jan 13, 2020 at 3:13 PM.

  1. The Pope is Antichrist

  2. The Pope is an antichrist

  3. The Pope is neither

    0 vote(s)
  4. The Pope is other, namely....

    0 vote(s)
  1. Seeking_Thy_Kingdom

    Seeking_Thy_Kingdom Puritan Board Freshman

    Inspired by @W.C. Dean thread that has a side discussion regarding the Pope as Antichrist.

    For a long time I believed that the idea of the Pope being Antichrist held by many Reformers/Puritans/Covenanters was due to their own experiences in their own time. However, due to Scriptural evidence I am now about 75% convinced that the Pope is indeed the Antichrist.

    What say ye?
  2. W.C. Dean

    W.C. Dean Puritan Board Freshman

    Before someone mentions it: this topic, like others, has been talked to death. I'm sure some will post some threads. To put in my thoughts however (I can't really argue well for it, I'm just learning about it), I do believe the Papacy is the fulfillment of the prophecies in Daniel 7-9 of the little horn that arose out of the Roman Empire.
  3. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    The Puritans were children of their age and fallible. But, if there was ever a title or role which fit the description of Antichrist, it is the Papacy. There are many Antichrists, the Pope being one, and in the End will come the final Antichrist.
  4. Tom Hart

    Tom Hart Puritan Board Senior

    As I have grown more familiar with Rome's doctrine and history, I have come to think the Pope is quite obviously the Antichrist, today no less than five centuries ago.
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  5. alexandermsmith

    alexandermsmith Puritan Board Sophomore

    Someone was telling me the other day about the missionary work in the early days of New Zealand. How it started with Protestants going out to various places and teaching the Maoris. They taught them the need for repentance and of true conversion and were very careful about who they admitted to church membership. But then the Papists came along and they would tell the Maoris that all that wasn't necessary, that they could continue living their old lifestyle and still be a Christian. The Papists basically bribed them into joinging with them.

    It struck me that that was a stark example of the nature of the Antichrist: wherever the true religion goes, it's not long before the the fraudulent, the Anti-Christian counterfeit, shows up and starts opposing the Gospel. All non-Christian religions are at enmity with Christ and Christianity. But Romanism is the Anti-Christian religion, and the Pope the Antichrist, because it sets itself up as the true church, as the true representative of Christ, and yet is, in the excellent old phrase, the masterpiece of Satan. How it has deceived millions into believing they were followers of Christ when really they were followers of Satan. Satan is behind all other non-Christian religions, of course, but in Romanism he presents himself as an angel of light.
  6. ADKing

    ADKing Puritan Board Junior

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  7. W.C. Dean

    W.C. Dean Puritan Board Freshman

    Thank you for actually saying why you disagree. It seems common for those to disagree to not actually give a reason beyond the Puritans were just products of their time. I understand the futurist position, so thank you for explaining.

    As for being children of their time, I agree. And we should be too. Papal doctrine has gotten worse since their time.
  8. timfost

    timfost Puritan Board Senior

    I think it's clear that the pope is an antichrist. My fear is that those who say that he is the Antichrist may be surprised one day when they have been looking at the wrong place the whole time. The Pope is certainly in the Antichrist radar (so to speak), but my scope is not zeroed in on him alone as the one who can claim the definite article. We should watch our backs!

    I don't have the time or desire to debate the issue, I'm only providing a reason for my vote.
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  9. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    My reasons for no.

    1) Historicism has to continually rewrite their schema. If you were in the year 1630 and you were going to place the entirety of church history within the book of Revelation, it would look different than it would in 1830 or 1970.

    2) If the Pope is the "man of sin in the temple of God," then we have to conclude that Rome is the temple of God. That then changes what you mean about baptism and who is in the (in)visible church.

    3) If applied to Matthew 24, especially verse 15, then this means the Great Tribulation spans the entire church age, which is bizarre. Put more modestly, they could see the event as happening in AD 70. So when Titus entered the temple, being the abomination of desolation, that caused the Great Tribulation. A believer suffering persecution today isn't suffering because of Titus's actions, yet that's what the exegesis demands.

    3.1) This means that the church age is one of unprecedented persecution, yet this doesn't seem correct.
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  10. Ed Walsh

    Ed Walsh Puritan Board Junior

    And remember. It is likely that we ain't seen anything yet. What and if in the future we see a deadly wound healed?
  11. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Of the passages below, all describe THE antichrist. The antichrist fits every single description below, not some and not most but all. There's only one that fits that description and that is the papacy.

    Daniel 7:8, 23 - Leads a nation, King or series of kings.
    Daniel 7:8 - Speaks pompous words.
    Daniel 7:23-24 - Kingdom comes out of the Roman Empire.
    Daniel 7:21, 25 - Makes war against the Church.
    Daniel 7:25 - Changes laws and times.
    2 Th. 2:3-4 - The antichrist is a deceptive office bearer in the church.
    Mt. 24:24, 2 Th. 2:9-10 - He deceives with signs, wonders, and miracles, even many in the Church who will perish because of it.
    2 Th. 2:3 - He’s a man, a person.
    2 Th. 2:4 - He exalts himself above the church.
    2 Th. 2:4, Daniel 11:35-36 - He shows himself to be God or sits in the place of God.
    1 Jn 2:18 - There is one and many antichrists.
    1 Jn. 2:22-23; 2 Jn 7 - Deceptive heresies are connected to him.
    1 Jn 4:3 - There’s a spirit of antichrist that was in the apostolic church.
    Rev. 13 - There is a connection with him between civil magistrate and the false church.
    Rev. 17:9 - He rules from 7 mountains
    Rev. 17:18 - He rules over a city that reigns over the kings of the earth.
    Rev. 18:9 - The nations live luxuriously with the city over which he reigns.
  12. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    In logic, these are necessary conditions, not sufficient ones.
  13. W.C. Dean

    W.C. Dean Puritan Board Freshman

    Here's why I do believe it:

    Antichrist: The title is one that means in the place of, and has literally been taken on by Romans and by Popes, as they believe the Pope is the vice Christ, his embodiment on earth. An appropriate title for the Pope is our Lord God the Pope (according to the Romans)
    Man of Sin: a reference to Antioch Ephinanes who set himself as a ruler of the church and changed the doctrines of God into idolatry.
    Son of Perdition: A reference to Judas Iscariot, who pretends to be a friend of Christ but instead betrays him and sells him.
    Exalteth himself in the temple: I see what some have said about the temple of the Pope not being the temple of God. I agree. However we can view the RCC as a sort of anti-temple, that stands in the place of the true temple, the body of Christ. The RCC is seen as the voice of Christianity in the world by many.
    Against all that is called God: we are shown that all that is called god are infact the tenporal rulers of our world, as the Scriptures call them 'gods'. The Pope certainly has and still does rule over temporal rulers.

    I find some of these objections interesting and I want to investigate them more, but please allow me some time to do so. I think these are reasonable objections, yet I still disagree. Everything I've said here is pulled from Reverend Todd Ruddell of Christ Covenant Reformed Presbyterian Church, and I highly recommend his lectures titled: The Pope is Antichrist on sermonaudio. These are not the only reasons I affirm WCF 25.6
  14. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    None of these reasons are exegetical. The first one is close, but it is dangerous to build doctrines on etymology.
  15. W.C. Dean

    W.C. Dean Puritan Board Freshman

    Do you mean those titles aren't scriptural? The Antichrist title is from the Apostle John and all the other titles are directly from 2nd Thessalonians. All those words and phrases are specifically used by Paul.
  16. A.Joseph

    A.Joseph Puritan Board Sophomore

    I think he fits the bill, but as Bunyan refers to him in PP, the papacy is such an impotent caricature at this point. He's too illegitimate and impotent to be seen in such a serious light at this point, even though the position is such an affront to the Living God. He's at best a false idol
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020 at 3:45 PM
  17. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    I mean you aren't making an exegetical case. You can take those Scriptural titles and apply them to many people throughout history.
  18. ADKing

    ADKing Puritan Board Junior

    Historic Protestantism has made an exegetical case out of Daniel, 2 Thessalonians, 1 John and Revelation. See, for example, Turrentin linked above. That case is certainly fair game for debate and it may be you don't find it persuasive. I think the interesting point being made about applying the names (particularly "antichrist") to the Pope is that in the case of "antichrist" it is not just that Protestants can apply it to him, he applies it to himself (antichrist/vicar of Christ).
  19. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    I understand that cases have been made. I was simply commenting above on the assertions per the titles.

    Are there any recent commentaries that argue for historicism?
  20. ADKing

    ADKing Puritan Board Junior

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  21. Megs

    Megs Puritan Board Freshman

    Francis Nigel Lee wrote John's Revelation Unveiled, available here: http://www.historicism.net/reading.htm
  22. Megs

    Megs Puritan Board Freshman

  23. ADKing

    ADKing Puritan Board Junior

  24. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

  25. James 1689

    James 1689 Puritan Board Freshman

    I am with you, I mean hey it is in my confession. Honestly, who better would fulfill 1 Thessalonians 1. Just saying.
  26. Megs

    Megs Puritan Board Freshman

    I should mention that in addition to Dr. Dilday, Pastor Mencarow also did a sermon series on Revelation from a historicist perspective: https://www.sermonaudio.com/search....SpeakerOnly=true&includekeywords=&ExactVerse=

    It's not a written commentary, but he does go verse by verse through the book and explain the historicist perspective, which may be helpful.

    In addition, I know this is a controversial source, but Greg Price did several sermons touching on Revelation from a historicist perspective in his Ezra sermon series: https://www.sermonaudio.com/search....SpeakerOnly=true&includekeywords=&ExactVerse= (Don't ask me why sermons on Revelation are buried under the title of Ezra, though).
  27. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritanboard Amanuensis

    I have listened to those sermons, and the ones by Price. Mencarow's are well-done. I still don't buy the exegesis but it is a good presentation.
  28. Reformed Covenanter

    Reformed Covenanter Puritanboard Commissioner

    There is a commentary by E. S. Turnbull, a minister (probably deceased now) in Rev. Winzer's denomination, called The Radiant Light of the Revelation or something to that effect. I used to own it but sold it about 15 years ago without reading it. It was published in 2002 but is pretty hard to obtain now.
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  29. Megs

    Megs Puritan Board Freshman

    Here is an interesting path to take:

    In "Biblical Predictions not Preterist but Historicist...," Francis Nigel Lee cites sources from early church history showing that the early church knew the Roman Empire was going to fall and that Antichrist would arise after that happened. The sources were clearly anticipating something yet future to them and not an imminent fulfillment of all of the Book of Revelation: http://www.historicism.net/readingmaterials/biblicalpredictions.pdf

    Then, during and after the Reformation, opinion seemed to crystallize around the conclusion that the Papacy was the prophesied Antichrist. This is from a SDA source, but the chart is helpful for illustrating this point: https://www.remnantofgod.org/4fathers.htm. Again, these sources as I understand them were not claiming everything would be imminently wrapped up in their times.

    I am no expert in this area, but the more "recent" sources I have read show that the downfall of Antichrist wasn't expected anytime before 2000 A.D. at the earliest (as claimed in Robert Fleming Jr.'s The Rise and Fall of the Papacy, 1701, which contains one of my favourite quotes: “If they ask, But when will the tide turn for the Protestant Church? I answer, When they turn more universally to God, and no sooner.”).

    Here is one source claiming it couldn't be earlier than 2015 A.D.: https://antipaschronicles.blogspot.com/2019/12/2015-at-earliest.html

    And Adam Clarke, in 1825, also re 2015: https://antipaschronicles.blogspot.com/2014/12/2015-or-thereabout.html and also here: https://antipaschronicles.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-identity-of-antichrist-and-year-2015.html

    Incidentally, the Brexit vote and Trump's election happened around then, which I have seen news articles referring to as part of the downfall of the current New World Order so it could all come together as the historicists claimed it would.

    The downfall of Antichrist relates to the 1260 years, which seems to have multiple fulfillments in history. For instance:

    70 A.D. (Destruction of Jerusalem) to 1330 (Birth of Wycliffe, the morning star of the Reformation)

    257 A.D. (Rome declared the head of the church) to 1517 (Luther starts the Reformation)

    529 (Justinian Code gave political and legal power to Rome) to 1789-93 (French Revolution ends the political power of the Papacy)

    755 (temporal power given to the Pope) to 2015 (per above-mentioned source), etc.

    So, while Historicists may quibble on the details, I don't think their schemes are vastly all over the place so as to discredit the interpretation in the main (at least from what I've read/listened to).

    At the same time, though, I have seen numerous Futurists schemes put forth (Pat Robertson didn't have a rapture starting things off in his book but the Left Behind series does, etc.) and if I recall correctly, Preterists have some major differences of opinion too, such as whether Revelation is all about Jerusalem or about Jerusalem and Rome and which parts refer to which and so on and so forth. The point I'm making is that each camp operates within a certain paradigm but the details within each differ depending on the author. If historicists can be accused of rewriting their schema as history marches on, it seems like the same criticism could be applied to other views as none of them are entirely nailed down and agreed upon by all within their respective camps. If none of the above are correct, that would seem to leave idealism, but I haven't yet been convinced of it.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020 at 10:28 PM
  30. Stephen L Smith

    Stephen L Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Sorry for getting a little (but not totally) off topic but I am constantly challenged by this statement by John Newton.

    “I have read of many wicked popes, but the worst pope I ever met is Pope Self.”

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