Rome and the Ecumenical Movement
(Understanding Prophetic Events-2000 PLUS! - Series - Part 3)
A number of years ago now, Archbishop Runcie who was, the head of the Church of England, told “Time Magazine” that he had given a ring to Pope John Paul II as “an engagement ring” in view of the coming marriage between the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of England. Nonetheless, it is true to say that the Church of Rome has still not renounced any of the fundamental doctrinal errors that provoked the Protestant Reformation in AD1520. Therefore non-Catholic members of the union were and still are making Ecumenical union on the basis of theological compromise.
If we are going to be swept up in the more recent events that have helped encourage a new wind of ecumenical-fever, we must first remember that unity comes via the Spirit and not man-made-structures. Let it also be said, that if it is the Spirit Who unites us; already we are one! But if we depend on man-made-structures to unit us, then there can never be unity, (as Babylonian structure will never sync with God’s Spirit).
In addition to this, Jesus never promised “religious-unity.” Quite the opposite in fact! His choice of words in Matthew 10:34 were quite emphatic: “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword” (NIV).
Concerning theological compromise, as mentioned above, this can be adequately highlighted by the fact that Catholic theologians still positively admit that John Paul II was the most traditional Pope of this last century and the strongest advocate of the worship of Mary, Queen of Heaven, and Mother of God, as the “Co-Redemptrix” along with Jesus Christ. Intense ecumenical dialogue continues therefore.
Recent church history reveals that leaders were indeed very close to healing the schism between the Greek and Russian Orthodox Churches and the Church of Rome. Pope John Paul II even met with Buddhist, Muslim, and Jewish religious leaders from around the world. And for the first time in history, the Vatican had sought to establish what it considered significant ties. In fact engaging in such ecumenical religious rituals and services with other religions, would have been unimaginable for any previous Pope!
The danger then today, is that in opting for a man-made unity based on compromise; and abandoning the Protestant Reformation and the truths of the Scriptures that were sealed in the blood of Martyrs, we are heading back to whence we came.
Michael de Semlyen was quite aptly quoted as saying, “Today in Britain, there is a ‘love Gospel’ about, which confines its self exclusively to what is called ‘the positive.’ It is claimed that as long as Jesus Christ is proclaimed as Saviour and Lord, we are all as one in Him. Differences over doctrine must not be allowed to get in the way of this. We can affirm truth, but not confront error.”
Also at the time, Clive Calver (UK Director, Evangelical Alliance) even had this to say:
“More barriers need to come down if a true alliance of evangelicals in the UK is to emerge. There are thousands more with whom we wish to stand shoulder to shoulder.”
So is this part of the New World Order? Or is such a blunt question simply too conspiracy theorist for us? Yet to the naked eye, it’s easy to recognise that the same crowd who accuse those standing for truth today (as being sect minded), actually help make up the unity-at-any-cost crowd; the Babylonian church!
A.W. Tozer once said that, “Every century needs its prophetic voices. Those men who have been gifted by God with an incisive cutting edge to expose hypocrisy, denounce compromise, and call for holiness.”
He was also quoted as saying: “If THE CHURCH in the second half of this century is to recover from the injuries which she suffered in the first half, there must appear a new type of preacher. The proper ruler of the synagogue type will never do. Neither will the priestly type of man who carries out his duties, takes his pay and asks no questions, nor the smooth talking pastoral type who knows how to make the Christian religion acceptable to everyone. All these have been tried and found wanting. Another kind of religious leader must arise among us. He must be of the old prophet type, a man who has seen visions of God and has heard a voice from the throne.”
Finally, let’s not be irreverent or indifferent to what he had to say next: “The Protestant martyrs, godly and loving men, could have taken this same position of, peace at any cost, within the wider Church of their day. They could have confined themselves to avoiding all controversy and to agreeing with their persecutors about many of the ‘positives.’ But, the Scripture commanded them to ‘exhort and convince by sound doctrine’ and to ‘flee from idolatry.’ They obeyed; they saw the error and the idolatry, and as responsible leaders, as pastors trusted to guide their flocks into green pastures, they exposed and opposed it all roundly. They could so easily have chosen to look the other way and concentrate on the many truths of the Christian faith, which was common ground. They could have elected to please men, rather than please God.”
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Father, You said if anyone lacks wisdom, let him ask of You, Who gives to all men liberally without fault finding. Therefore I ask to be filled with the knowledge of Your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding and keep me from deception. I have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind. Help me live in obedience and courage for these last days.
CONFESSION OF THE DAY
With my soul I will bless the Lord. My mind will not wander out of His presence. I look carefully to how I walk, not as unwise but as wise. I keep my eyes looking straight ahead and allow God’s Word to dwell richly in me, concerning all things.
(TAKEN FROM: ISRAEL, THE CHURCH AND THE ENDTIMES, pages 167-169. Published by APMI Publications, Available as PDF version. Other formats available soon.)