Isn’t it interesting that people who argue against Christian faith love to point out the persecution and slaughter of millions through history in the name of Christianity, but the reality is it was millions of Christians themselves who were tortured and issued death decrees by a Roman Catholic hierarchy punishing them for such “heresies” as not baptizing their infants into Catholic Church membership.
American philosopher Will Durant named the Catholic popery-invented Inquisition of the Middle Ages as “among the darkest blots on the record of mankind, revealing a ferocity unknown in any beast.”
Of course, the Roman Catholic Church to this day has not confessed or renounced its centuries of brutal murder. The doctrines responsible for their terrible crimes still underpin the system!
“Infallibility can never admit it was wrong,” points out author Dave Hunt in his exhaustive book profiling the horrific resume of the Roman Catholic Church from its inception, A Woman Rides the Beast. He quotes John Fox’s reminder in his all-time classic Book of Martyrs, “A Church which pretends to be infallible will always seek the destruction of those who dissent from it . . .”
Hunt writes of the Inquisition, “Failure to give wholehearted allegiance to the pope was considered treason against the state punishable by death. Here was the basis for slaughtering millions. As Islam would be a few centuries later, a paganized Christianity was imposed upon the entire populace of Europe under the threat of torture and death.”
“The inquisitors seemed to be drugged into insensibility until their normal sense of horror and sympathy had been numbed. Indeed, to be able to impose the most extreme torture without a twinge of conscience or compassionate thought became a mark of holiness and fidelity to the Church.
“ . . . Imagine the torment of dislocated joints, torn and seared flesh, internal injuries, broken bones on the rack and other devices, mended by doctors so they could be torn asunder again by fresh torture . . . Such was the fate of millions.
“These were real people: mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters—all with hopes and dreams, with passions and feelings, and many with a faith that could not be broken by torture or fire.
“Remember that this terror, this evil of such proportions that it is unimaginable today, was carried on for centuries in the name of Christ by the command of those who claimed to be the vicars of Christ.
“They are still honored with that title by this Church, which has never admitted that the Inquisitions were wrong. She has not repented or apologized, and she dares to pose even today as the supreme teacher and example of morals and truth. Remember also that the doctrines which supported the Inquisitions remain in force within the Roman Catholic Church even at this present time.”
What is all too telling is the astonishing parallels between the Church and the upcoming Antichrist church foretold in the New Testament.
Hunt writes, “If Antichrist pretends to be Christ and is worshipped by the world (Rev. 13:8), then his followers are of course ‘Christians.’ Not Communism, but Christianity will take over the world, and not real Christianity but an Antichrist counterfeit thereof.
“. . . Part of the apostasy is the ecumenical movement, which is literally setting the stage for a union between all religions and even influences evangelicals as well. An Antichrist ‘Christianity’ must be created which embraces all religions and which all religions will embrace—precisely what is occurring today with astonishing speed.
“. . . The Latin equivalent of the Greek ‘anti’ is ‘vicarius,’ from which comes ‘vicar.’ Thus ‘vicar of Christ’ literally means Antichrist. Although the Roman Catholic popes have called themselves vicar of Christ for centuries, they were not the first to do so, but inherited that title from Constantine. His future counterpart, the coming world ruler over the revived Roman Empire, will be the Antichrist.
“As already noted, in the ancient Roman Empire the Emperor was worshipped as God. As such he was the leader of the pagan priesthood and of the official, state-sponsored pagan religion of the empire. An image was made to the Caesars, before which the citizens were required to bow in worship. Those who refused to acknowledge the emperor as God were killed. And so it will be when the Roman Empire is revived under Antichrist.”
(Editor’s Note: To be continued . . . )