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THE POLITICAL MASSIF
Rouses Itself in Readiness for Ruin
News Radio, Adelaide, June 17, 2007
The Advertiser Saturday, June 23, 2007
Europe is once more coming of age; and that is of age in this Age, a thing of no-mean unloveliness. Let us look at the fact and then the implications scripturally.
EUROPE IN VAST GROWTH ?
In News Radio, on Sunday June 13, 2007, there was an interview in which considerable displeasure was voiced at the understood reduction in Polish voting power in the EU. There was talk of various agenda and provisions as the Market grew, to have this effect. I n particular, there was a movement at this EU summit, in Germany, for voting rights to relate to population. The Polish PM indicated that were it not for the 'incomprehensible' conduct of Germany in WW II, his country would be expected to have now 66 million citizens - not the current 38 million! He wanted compensation. The German President of the European Parliament, Hans-Gert Poettering, found this 'very painful' as there had been for decades strong efforts to encourage goodwill. Unity is the theme.
In fact, Germany has been seeking a revival of parts of the Constitution rejected by Dutch and French voters in 2003. There was thus a threat to the plan; but it is undeniable that despite these only to be expected set-backs to gleaming steel and concrete efficiency in the EU, there is a thrust to the advantages of solidarity for strength, safety, economic advance, mutual encouragement by the best of each member, capacity to face Russia's invasive actions as with the gas encounter not so long ago, to feel independent of the USA, and to find and follow its own road.
A Columnist in the Mail, apparently British, was asked his opinion and spoke freely of that view of Europe which he believed to be justified, relative to EU Constitutional and related developments. In this, he spoke of its being inevitable that the EU would become a super-State, that the member nations would be 'provinces', while the EU would have both a State identity and a place in the UN as do some other 'national bodies'. In this case, however, it would be a trans-national and supra-national body which for all that, was evidently conceived as going to have its OWN stamp, seal, nature and position AS IF A NATION of itself. It would be a joint presence, characterisable, impactive, powerful, united, integral.
Asked if this was pessimistic, the Columnist in effect replied that as to that, it was not that he was defeatist or anything of that kind, but rather simply was observing an indefeasible fact. There is no need to become hysterical about it, he said in one of those savvy substitutes for thought which act as if to induce calm and disarm those of a contrary desire, for it will simply happen: it has to do so.
Such was his view as a specialist journalist.
Already, he pointed out, the International Court takes precedence over national courts. There was trouble, he proceeded, from France and the Netherlands particularly in the last vote on the EU Constitution: they negated it. However, it was a lack of tact, he felt, to call it a 'Constitution', for this tended to create apprehension or negativity. Certainly it WAS a Constitution, however.
From all this, it grew apparent that the trend of thought was in this, much in the manner of Marxism, that ultra-contra-factual fairy-tale belligerence against morality and right, in the name of morality and right, which sought to remove moral considerations as a possible item, by moral considerations, which it brought to bear on those who felt it immoral to attack morals, especiallly with morals when they were supposed to have no existence objectively. Many of these were its victims, which it exhorted as it slew them, tortured and tormented them, displaced, harassed and condemned them, in terms of their breach of the State and its codes, commands and right.
The ludicrous and pre-emptive character of such attacks on MORAL considerations by CERTAINTIES which are invoked from unknown resources and anti-verified, constructions of the mind which cannot on that model be true, since it dispenses with 'right' as a criterion altogether, and so is mere antilogy when it affirms it, is always the same. It is SURE that such and such will happen, and it is also RIGHT. Such was Marx. How loose the morals of those who clung to morals, was the effectual mouthing of moralising Marx. There was this insidious certainty which for reasons always unknown was eminently desirable, right, righteous and to be sought, that it would all happen as Marx 'foresaw'.
The mere fact that it did not do so, was to be sure an embarrassment. The fact that Germany, allegedly through its industrialist specialties, ripe for take-over by the 'certainties' of Communist was not taken over (except for half of it by something as ordinary as an army in association with the Allies who loved liberty), and that Russia, ostensibly unripe because of its relative backwardness in industrial giganticism at that time, was taken over (by armed force of a small minority also), was nothing to the point. Like evolutionism and all naturalism, which merely ignores the grounds of being and the dynamics back of its arrival, while affirming this or that imagined aspect as if it made things for you while it was at it: it did not happen. The more it was tested, the less it could be seen (cf. Ch. 3 Appendix above, and The gods of naturalism have not go!).
So in the Communist fallacy, the certainty was illusion, the ground of it was skimpy thought on inadequate bases, the foundation of it was matter and energy, the delimited and definable elements of which have no cause in terms of this idea, but yet mystically manage to produce what has no dynamic for its construction as well, so that everything is from nothing for nothing; and it is thus scarcely surprising that nothing does what it is supposed to do on such nebulous, nugatory and illusory swollen rivers of idle verbiage*1
It is this strange idea of the certain, what is sure to happen, based on a statistical, or group dynamic, or current of history as seen from some one aspect, or simplistic concept of some specialised, localised and reductionistic kind, than which nothing could well be less certain, that tends to attract some. It tends to hypnotise people into submission, or lure their minds into scaling down creative thought, taking spectacular bounds into reality with hope, based on preference, penchant, fear or submission to the inevitable - so that they can ignore everything and live without thought. It tends to grind the mind, unless it is taken apart as it must be, and criticised for the simplistic substitution of perception for proof which it constitutes.
It is the assurance of what is going to happen which is the telling point of resemblance in this tale: Europe is sure to become a supranational, pseudo-national, vast and multiplied presence, in the UN, in its own right, with those who think otherwise for it, mere irrelevancies, failing to get on the so very merry-go-round: it is this which resembles the devices of Communism. It may have no ulterior motive; but it has the same kind of musing expectation, and bemused assurance, slender grounds and inchoate certainties.
NOT STATISTICS BUT SPIRITUAL FORCES ARE AT WORK,
AND FACTS FOLLOW
In this case, there is with this anything but diminutive aspect of the Columnist's expectation, so sure a thing that it was neither defeatism nor anything else emotional, but just realism... something else.
In fact, however, biblically he is not far wrong. Although it could not be proved from such bases as those named in the broadcast, yet there is ON BIBLICAL GROUNDS, nothing less than something of this order to come. If you say someone has chicken pox because of widespread red spots, you are obviously simplistic. It MAY however be that the case is as you imagine, and that while needing just care in real diagnosis, this is the nature of the disease.
So here: Europe is to do just such things as these, as biblically forecast (cf. SMR pp. 886ff., Highway of Holiness ... Chs. 3, 8, 10, Biblical Blessings Chs. 1, 2 and 6). This is the prophecy of Daniel, and Europe has been growing in various ways, over time, along the paths foretold, not because of economics, not because of fear, not because of hope for significance, though all these things may play some part from time to time, but because this is, was and has in fact been ordained by GOD, and what He has said.
It is however emphatically important to see that there is no human necessity for what will become a scourge, just as there was none for Hitler, who could have been torpedoed at the outset, possibly if the Romanist movement had not voted for him*2, for example, or for Stalin, if the help to the White Russians had been more realistic. If it comes, and reaches the destiny assigned, as it will, it will be in human terms, because of failure to discriminate, deter, and desire which will conquer prudence. Desire for glory has already been apparent, not only in the Roman Empire itself, in the Holy Roman Empire, in the Romanist arrogations, but in the desire for a power bloc, a glory of architecture and achievement, of revolutionary, racial or more diffuse kind, as seen also in Napoleon and Hitler, and now in the EU. Destiny beckons ... but the key question of where ? this is bypassed.
Imagine a body with a common destiny in view and in phrasing, such as the EU, which cannot or will not designate what it is about in terms of what deserves destiny! Hop in the car and put down the accelerator; but don't quibble about the steering!
It is true the Common Market - EU has been a growing movement, often disguised, for many decades; but it is also true it would have been easy for it to be derailed in disappointment, rejected in frustration, or relinquished because of its religious inclusivism, in the sense that it finds it virtually impossible to have ANY religion, and leaves the direction and point of things very much for a "common destiny" as it phrased it, without too much sense of the direction for the attainment of this destiny. Its marvellous entity-ship is like a nautical vessel, with a sense of its own greatness, cultural, artistic, scientific, linguistic, historical, but without protection against submarines, aircraft or navigation disasters.
Thus in various and continuing ways does Europe continue its plighted course, over history giving a strange assemblage of power and potency, weakness and fracture, disaster and triumph: but a CONTINUING one.
You see this combination of characteristics - fragility and power, brokenness and ruthlessness - in Daniel's fourth kingdom, which following the specified Medes and Persians (Number two after Babylon) and Greeks (Alexander the Great after the Medes and Persians) was in fact Rome. This, the fourth and the last of the Danielic series*2A, statedly leads to the rule of the Lord, whose kingdom and power will break all the aspirants of simplistic thought, sovereign dominion and all the arrogations of power over man, by man and his rebellious spiritual allies. It is this which will, unlike the other four, not pass away (Daniel 7:14,26-27).
THIS kingdom knows where it has come from, why, where it is going, with what objective, who is going with it and is filled with the Spirit of the God who created, redeemed and releases His divine significance and grace to His citizens. It does not alter, though thousands and millions misuse its treaties, alter its treatment, ape its actualities and seek to take it over, from the days of John the Baptist till now, from the day of the Lord on the Cross to the resurrection and from this to the crusading zeal. This is not with physical armies, but the task of those who know Him, that others find His haven, before the world is blown away with all the follies which have distorted, diffused and deleted the good things it might have had: before judgment settles like locusts, and truth makes its final declaration against the unatoned evils of the spiritually rebellious.
It is, then, Europe with that centre that is in view for this last empire, this fourth imperial focus. Daniel does not call it 'Rome,' but as the fourth kingdom, it is noted as the last, and the Roman Empire, that of Europe, this was the fourth beyond all scruple, argument or possibility. Its broken and rebuilt entity-ship has been paraded for millenia, taken many forms and now nestles happily in its own name, the European Union, starting its renewed course with that so well-named, Treat of Rome.
From way back in the 8th century B.C., it began, coming to pre-eminence with the control of the fragmented areas of Alexander the Great, in massive victories imposing its power over most of the central, cultivated world. It continued till 410 A.D., and in the Eastern Empire till 1453 A.D., and in the Holy Roman Empire, which tended to give orders to Roman Catholic Kings who did not always appreciate this, in one form or another, to the day of World War I. Perhaps one of the most palpable of these orders to kings and emperors can in the particular case of Henry IV. It was he who did not appreciate being made to wait barefooted in the snow for some days, in order to gain forgiveness for not doing what the lord pope told him. That is his famous penitential setting!
Henry had dared to show defiance to the pope's ambitions and regalities, the more after the strong showing of his father, Henry III. When however he sought to depose the pope for his arrogations of power and authority, the latter decided to excommunicate him, in a nice piece of workmanship of battle.
As the princes of Germany were not unhappy to have no fealty to Henry, he had to submit, sad in the snow, till the lord pope chose to even so much as see the man! Such was the humiliation of the emperor before Rome in the papacy dress, one which would marshall empires and emperors, when not being stricken by them. Yet even when as in the days of Henry III, popes could be made and dismissed - the emperor dismissed three of them, and you had three of them claiming papacy together, there was the sense of power in Europe, whatever its particular squalls, squabbles and unlustrous lordlinesses.
England is famed for its successful resistance to the pompous powers of the papacy. Indeed, it is notable for the manner of its deliverances as in the two Armadas from Spain, the death of the ruler of Russia during the Seven Years War (at a stage nearing calamity for the British, one thus avoided as the new ruler had a much more propitious attitude), the amazing deliverances of Waterloo, where enemy poor communication and co-operation helped enormously (cf. Ch. 3 above), as also for the stark seeming miracle of Dunkirk. Its career, for all its faults, was one of exalting a nation at least seeking in many palpable ways, to honour the God of the Bible.
It is, if possible, yet more notable for the combination of such things as these, where sometimes as if by a hair, its deliverance was secured; and the result was no hair! It resisted Rome, removed its place and power and sequestration of State funds by improper taxes or "Peter's pence" which it exacted, even when some bishops in Rome did not bother to come to the ... Island to do their job. Indeed, while suffering many burnings and horrors as the torment of Rome sought rule, it was delivered and this showed most markedly in the famous, burningly prosperous days of Elizabeth I, despite Romanesque plots to her detriment.
If then England has left its religious moorings, so has its fame and name diminished; yet for all this, it is now part of Europe, and its diminution, a voluntary one through increasing disfaith (q.v.), is shown well in the Muslim pushings of both Prince Charles and of PM Blair, and its power is increasingly disposed towards that European body into which it increasingly moves.
Thus while many resisted Romanism's tilt for power, many did obey, make war as directed and seek to instal papacy here or there. Moreover, that engine of oppression to break the human will, the infamous Inquisition added to the duress as it dealt with those who likewise did not do what they were told. As recompense, they were tortured, burnt or otherwise disposed, being seized, with their property, this taken even from the hands of their children, in a thorough going operation as far from anything to do with Christ Jesus, as is the pit from the palace. In much of this, imperial power and papal pretension were in co-operation, in one of the most hideous effusions of this despicable dynamic of the 'beast' as the Bible designates it, that one could well imagine.
For this, in Europe and its manifold history, Hitler was a coping stone, not a lone adventurer when it came to casuistry, pretension, self-obsession and striving for supremacy. This became a feature, whether as with him, of race, or with the pope, of place, or as in the case of nation or Emperor, in the lust for martial supremacy.
This then is some exhibition of the biblical and political, the historical and the prophecy-fulfilling nature of Europe. It is by now means to dislike that body; one does not dislike Joan because she has influenza, but like her though one may, one has no time for the 'flu she has, and would prefer it gone, and that quickly.
Thus it IS an indication of the dangers of the forecast 'disease', this romancing, roaming, ruthless power cohesion which has defiled Europe from the subjugations wrought on other continents, notably Africa, now much in ruins, to her religious ravagings and rampagings. Nor is it to act as if Europe were not for its own part, also a haven where grand theologians and great saints were active in denouncing Romanism and showing a courage and constancy of delightful proportions. It is not to ASSESS Europe; it is however to expose the disease forecast for it, so often notoriously exhibited by it, and predicted to grasp it as in an horrendous spasm at the end, when at last the ruler for whom Hitler and Napoleon were proto-types, proceeds to grip the earth.
It is therefore interesting, in view of this, and in terms of seeing the impact of biblical prophecy, controlling history, though not responsible for those who freely choose to fire it with their follies, to see the new frankness about Europe, the coming super-State, member of the UN, as designated by the Columnist, but more importantly, in essentials shown in biblical prophecy.
It would therefore be well to increase our penetration into details of the past, as we consider what is being evoked, at this very time, for the predicted future.
EUROPE HAS HAD MANY PRELIMINARIES
How often has Europe surrendered itself to folly, even in the last 100 years. Sophisticated as a byword, but not in virtue in this era so much as in knowledgeability, savvy, couture, culture and the art of external living with address, it has had periods of extreme beauty, as in the Reformation where along with England, parts of it such as Switzerland or Sweden, played important roles, and in France the Huguenots, lovers of the Bible, had influence.
Let us consider this last case, however, that of France in this regard.
This Protestant influence decreased not a little at the fulfilment of the absurd, al Qaeda-like plot to kill the influential Admiral Coligny and many other Protestant assembled in Paris for the marriage of the Huguenot Henry of Navarre (future King Henry IV) to the daughter of the assassination-minded Catherine de Médicis, mother of the then reigning French King, Charles IX. One contemporary Duke, who narrowly escaped death in this ruthless, regal riot, one backed by nobility and the King, the Duke de Sully, estimated the savage clandestine slaughter which came by political and regal plot, at 70,000. After the first evil night, it grew in the bleeding statistics of abomination, as the massacre moved to the provinces, and did not even stop when the royal command came to cease.
A papal medallion struck to commemorate this depravity which remains a livid scar on the reputation of France, paralleled by the excesses of the Revolution which not surprisingly, was two centuries later, a response to the marvels of cruelty of the nobility and Romanism with its excesses and pomp; for although the offences of these same two bodies which were in no small way involved in the 1572 St Bartholomew's Day Massacre were profound, wild confusion of hatred with correction are never wise.
The papal pretension to rule*3 the world by virtue of the name of Christ, but in fact with complete contradiction of the command and ruling of Christ, thus paraded its dissolute dissemblance. Rather had Christ indicated that those who live by the sword will die by it, and that His kingdom is not of this world, for otherwise His servants would fight to protect Him: which He forbade dramatically. This was keenly exemplified when He told Peter to put down his protective sword at the time of the arrest of the Saviour. It is this principle which was specified when He spoke to Pilate (John 18:36): but this work of sanguinary violence, product of Romanism, acclaimed by the pope, was a substitute, a contradiction and a calamity all three in one. This was a new slaughter of the Lord, though His blood was no more available: it was as if to slay His name; but in the mercy and wisdom of God, HIS views of such violence are in the BIBLE once for all, and Christ's deposition remains written, by whomever it may be smitten, and however they may misuse His name.
This command of Christ, concerning non-violence in His name, in what claimed to be a church, came to grief in this way, in causing grief over time, directly and indirectly, to millions (cf. Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 14). Here was the very paragon of hypocrisy and the very depth of contradiction of the Christ by what, ostensibly serving Him, was serving an arrogant glory, and serving its own self! This, it was part of the fourth kingdom's power and performance, of its "teeth of iron and nails of bronze" (Daniel 7:19).
It is an infection of both political power and religious, running riot in the system of nations. Here was a tip to the papal boil which had been raging in the back of Europe for centuries, from the days of the Waldensians on, when papal armies sought to exterminate these believers in their mountain retreat; and here its pus was poured out with shocking agonies that ravaged the land.
It is well in our current context to consider some of the background to these affairs, and for this we cite from SMR pp. 912 (slightly adapted for our present purpose).
We have had occasion to consider and will consider other elements where Christianity has been persecuted, in the fourth kingdom and its various phases: its partly strong and partly weak aspect, its partly patent and partly latent areas, its partly hale and partly broken history, as predicted by Daniel (Daniel 2:31-34,40 ff., cf. the fourth kingdom in Daniel 7). Where is it now ?
Not only are there communistic contributions as to the spirit and method to be employed, and Nazi contributions as to the scope and the religious vagrancy involved, but Roman Catholic contributions in that these inspired Hitler (who devoutly admired the organisation of the Jesuits and indicated this): these are centred in central Europe, and the current Pope (now the last one) is explicitly seeking one religion for the new and 'united' Europe which so splendidly fits the fourth empire in its continuation. It is for this reason that the doctrine of Rome, and its contradiction of the Bible and of Christ required, does require and will require analysis (e.g. pp. 1040-1086, cf. 1032-1040 infra), so that the fourth kingdom will be seen operative in all its dimensions. In particular, this will include its contribution in quality and trend, to predicted events, yet to come.
Another reason, of course, as dealt with elsewhere1 is the relevance, to our apologetic field, of the principial use of force in the subduing of those who will not believe what is wanted, relative to alleged salvation. This in turn requires us to research the statements and practice of Rome, historically, on such use of violence (e.g. in Chapter 10, Section
2A , and pp. 913 ff. infra), enabling both of two necessary points.
What are these ? The first is this: that Rome's use of force here is contrary to the construction of man, in God's image: the Bible does not signify force for conversion purposes. God pleads, exhorts, asseverates, thunders, protests, judges, but does not make force the means of 'conversion'*3A; and of course Jesus stated that His kingdom does not belong to this world.
It will be seen that this, apart from Biblical contradiction, rules out both the Moslem heresy and that of Rome, each of which employs a different 'Christ', re-defined (cf. More Marvels ... Ch. 4). It does more than this. It helps to define the nature of the cruelty which Daniel (7:7,19) predicated of this fourth Empire, in which Rome has played so substantial a part, in its ecclesiastical format, in the Church of Rome. There is a total co-ordination between prediction and performance!
The second is this: that Rome, with its force is part (as we have developed and will develop this theme) of a predicted apostasy from Christianity. It is not at all apologetically relevant as a negative (as if Christ now offered violence, crucifying, no more satisfied with being crucified); but is relevant as a positive item, in that it is a predicted perversion of the purity of the Saviour, carried out in His name. (See Chapter 10, infra.)
Thus Boniface VIII, so long occupied in conflict with Philip the Fair of France, had some words echoing with divine sovereignty:
How shall we assume to judge kings and princes, and not dare to proceed against a worm! Let them perish forever, that they may understand that the name of the Roman pontiff is known in all the earth and that he alone is most high over princes. (Italics added. Address to the Cardinals against the Colonna: Schaff - History of the Christian Church, VI, p. 16.)
One had thought that God alone was most high and all the princes of the earth were as dust before Him (Isaiah 40:1-17)! Again, for ever... seems a long time for one mortal sinner to reflect on the superior, and indeed lordly powers of another mortal sinner, when it is God alone who "shall be exalted in that day" (Isaiah 2:10-11) when all is revealed. That day will of course take place within the 'for ever' held in view by the Roman pontiff. For ever will become never! and this by strictest principle. It is again a strong penalty pompously envisaged on behalf of one mortal sinner who specifically is not to be in the lordly mode of 'the Gentiles' (Matthew 20:25-27), if a Christian. For as Christ said:
He who is greatest among you will be your servant ... and he who exalts himself will be abased, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.
The lesson, if learnt, would not seem to correspond to the 'humbling of himself' on the part of the pope. The object of the lesson is in fact the precise opposite - the full realisation of the ineffable power claimed by the Pope, and defended with such zeal that eternity is needed to reflect adequately on it. Such is the pope's lesson, here! Such teaching and such 'understanding', he would impart.
ONE BISHOP OF ROME WHO PUT THINGS STRAIGHT,
NEAR THE FIRST!
Further, as Schaff also observes (loc. cit.), in view of this exaltation of the Bishop of Rome alone, it is notable that, in recognising the Emperor, Albrecht, Pope Boniface VIII declared that "as the moon has no light except as she receives it from the sun, so no earthly power has anything which it does not receive from the ecclesiastical authority". God, for His part declares:
It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers... He brings the princes to nothing: He makes the judges of the earth useless (Isaiah 40:22-23).
It would appear a most anomalous grasshopper who makes the princes depend on him! One of the antichrist sentiments seems commonly to be the removal of God from all practical involvement, whether verbally, symbolically, by philosophy or, as here, by mere pretension; and when you reflect on it, this is natural. To be God requires no opposition; and to make Him inoperative or irrelevant to the point, would prima facie convince some that all that was HIS was now theirs, for their own disposition; and perhaps it might almost convince some of the victims likewise!
Let us pursue this, using How Great is the God We Adore Ch. 11
Small wonder Boniface I, another bishop of Rome (*5) once sent a humble petition "to the emperor to provide some remedy against the ambitious contentions of the clergy concerning the bishopric of Rome" (Foxe, in his Book Of Martyrs, p. 12); whilst Gregory 1 (op. cit., p. 15) detested the vulpine vulgarity of 'universal bishop' as a title. This is merely the flesh and the spirit, as so often, at war: the one aspiring, the other adoring Christ.
Consider the almost slap-stick derision of Romanistic pretensions, when one of the illustrious bishops of Rome (the pope, even in form, is no other) declared that it was a thing of antichrist so to divide the brethren and instil such sense of superiority divisively! Rome condemns Rome! and how justly. Such was the action of Gregory I (cf. Schaff, History of the Christian Church, Vol. III, p. 329).
It is well to remind ourselves of this salient spirituality which so well expressed itself, against the self-adulatory procession of papal pronouncements. Thus let us continue the citation from How Great is the God We Adore Ch. 11, and see further the impact of the ancient holder of the bishopric of Rome, this Gregory I.
Thus of Gregory I, Foxe writes:
In his epistles how oft does he repeat and declare the same to be directly against the gospel, and ancient decrees of councils, affirming that none of his predecessors did ever usurp to himself that style or title and concludes that whoever does so, declares himself to be a forerunner of antichrist.
Thus did faithful Gregory, in the early days, despise such high claims to being 'universal bishop', repudiate them, claim them as novelties in the history of the church - though himself bishop of Rome. His predecessor, Bishop Pelagius of Rome, urged similarly, showing that to take such a title makes one bishop to become 'derogatory' of another. Gregory, Foxe notes, spoke "with sharp words and rebukes, detesting the same title, calling it new, foolish, proud, perverse, wicked, profane, and that to consent to it, is as much as to deny the faith." This is scarcely surprising in view of Matthew 23:10. It is not only disobedience, but direct usurpation: for the reason that it is forbidden, is this - that the post is Christ's!
I Peter 5:1 tells us that Peter is a fellow elder, and 2:25 that Christ is operative "bishop of our souls".
Verbally to arrogate that title is to derogate deity!
To assume such a role is to imitate deity in His majesty;
to suffer it, is to allow idolatry!
To embrace it in the heart, is idolatrous.
We must agree absolutely with Gregory I in his assessment, in the early springtime of his office.
Wrote Gregory: "As for me I seek not mine advancement in words, but in manners: neither do I account that any honour wherein the honour of my brethren I see to be hindered... my honour is the full and perfect vigour of my brethren. Then am I honoured when to no man is denied the due honour which to him belongs... Let these words therefore go, which do nothing but puff up vanity, and wound charity..." (Foxe, loc. cit.).
BACK TO THE PRESENT AND ON TO THE FUTURE!
Many have been the self-exaltations of the papacy, the imperial power, the national grandeurs, the land-grabbing aggressions which have emanated, now in this format, now in that, from Europe. As Britain so valiantly resisted, now it more and more supinely surrenders what no tyrant could make it do.
Europe, thus more united, and without the Protestant power of the British Empire (not that none of the rest of Europe has strong Protestantism, as in Denmark and Finland), feeling more and more free, rebuilt not least by the USA after its last extravanganza of the 1940s, discourtesy of Hitler, is proceeding to its appointed place in the realms of ravaging history. It has had two recent very significant attempts to rule - Napoleon had to be overthrown by multiplied nations, even in his second outburst upon his escape from Elba, and Hitler was not far from success, his own temper apparently helping to ruin him, in that rampaging relentlessly in Yugoslavia delayed his assault on Russia, and so helped him to inhabit snow in his forces, not Moscow when Winter came.
They were close enough.
More is to follow.
It is not that it is a mere war that is to do it. As in the case of Britain, it won and lost: the war was won, the peace was lost. Put differently, Churchill is on record as stating that it is a simple matter, relatively, for him in his action, for he had ONE objective, to remove the threat of Hitler; and if the Hitler were to invade hell, he would have considered saying something nice about the devil, in the House of Commons! (James Leason, War at the Top, p. 130).
This undoubtedly contributed, this sort of attitude, to the Cold War, for the dynamic devilries of Stalin, killing swift and slow at will, many millions, were thus an albatross around the Allies' neck, one which did not cease to act for decades after that colossal error. It is this spiritual malaise and demeaning lack of vision, Christian perspective - although England is still ostensibly through its rulers, Protestant, a thing most hidden and virtually mythical - which has mauled Britain these last decades (A Question of Gifts, Section VI), nor has it worked there alone.
The World Council of Churches has been white-anting in the most ludicrous manner, many who might have originally meant simply to increase genuine Christian co-operation on the mission field, the ostensible thrust for its institution. Abused by infiltration, defaming itself by heresies that are almost only by a smirk, seen to relate to Christianity at all (like Liberation Theology, putting alien terms in Christianity, in order to abuse it into serving other causes, in effect a secular, social parody of Christianity cf. SMR p. 743). The work of Bishop Swing in his Unification modes, has had its own part (cf. News 121, 122), and even Billy Graham, for a time seeming all but scriptural, has turned his back on biblical requirements, in making common task with Rome to the point not only of using for Crusades, Romanist chaplains or counsellors, placing what is merely liberal meddling with the faith on the platform with himself, but of congratulating it on having the same Gospel! (Stepping Out for Christ Ch. 1).
Many Protestants also have added to their failure, these falling from the courage of former times into insipid inclusivism, no more valiant for the truth, in exposing the heresies of Rome, but rather now coming to make many of their own (cf. SMR pp. 686ff.). Thus many forces have been burrowing into the changed foundations of visible Christendom, until in Australia, a nation founded by a far more consistent Protestant Britain than now appears, is this very day seen to be asserting in a survey, by some 57% of those tested, that same sex union is fine, many claiming rights of payment should be the same also.
Thus the whole world is being prepared this time, not only by the power of martial weapons (Australia is even now setting about to buy a SPANISH destroyer plan), but by that of spiritual ones, such as inhabit the schools, press, mass media, TV, colleges, universities in massive and spiritually murderous venom. Children are shamelessly indoctrinated, and many in universities have it made clear to them that failure to find their place in the evolutionary theatre (rather like Punch and Judy, where each strikes the other stridently down for winning and survival, but here on a less comic scale), will mean massive displeasure. The vomit spreads like that on an oily deck, while the ship sways in the waves into which its misled captain, the Prince of the World, smashes.
As the spirit of man is doctored, drugged, hypnotised, inveigled, abused, misshapen from youth, tossed in untruth, threatened in prospects, mocked in discords monumental like the howling of fiends, peer pressures are abundant and authority raves as one out of his mind, all discordant with fact and grating with it like chalk on a blackboard: so is this generation being dextrously prepared for the servitude to the powers that are to be. Communism has been a means of infiltration to make more heresies in the Christian body, as seen in the Earth Charter sort of concept *4, just as earlier with alleged KGB representatives masquerading as Christians, while mystical approaches are taken with the sort of agreeable consultation and community on all differences by psychological manipulation, which forgets the war and confers with the enemy.
Thus the time is ripe, the power of Europe as the forecast centre is becoming far more manifest in word and deed*5 , its Constitution showing the beginning of the dissociation from Romanism as foretold (for they were emphatically NOT willing to cite anything Christian, actual or pretended, in their past in that Constitution, to Romanism's disapproving frown); and the future beckons like a Paid Pied Piper, taking this time not children, but nations to their ruin.
The attractions ? Beyond the obvious advantages of a united Europe, noted at the outset of this Chapter, there is that sense of 'common destiny', marvellous possibilities (Galileo space work an exalted anticipation), supra-national integration with a powered past, amid and perhaps despite all its horrors, that mangling of science which invades philosophy with starry-eyed sense of man's magnitude, and then ... the glory.
This is always one of the great thrusts in the human spirit, making men ludicrously servile, instead of properly respectful, to king or prince, intoxicatedly adulatory of sportsmen or teams, of each other, of social orders or the like. It is the misplaced worship of God which, set to one side, then gallops off to find some satisfaction in some substitute, which being infinitely less, is often all but incredibly naive! General de Gaulle, it was he, for his own land, who had such a sense of la gloire! The pursuit of glory, where it belongs not at all, is inveterate because God made man and man in general, loves to wander. It is however not to be so limited as to one nation. It is Europe which is making itself into something!
Thus do we gain a perspective on Europe in its spiritual dimensions and domain, and perhaps sooner than some may imagine, demesne.
The perspective however would not be complete without the realisation that while these ambits and ambiences of the Prince of this World (cf. Christ's forecast of John 14:30) are specific and are growing into life, as does the bud in Spring, producing in this case flowers of evil as Baudelaire phrased things, there is what is far more valuable, significant and worthy both in law, logic and love.
It is that other Prince, whose ways are sagacious, gracious, spacious for the freed spirit of man (II Corinthians 5:17), whose love of fact is consonant with the liberties man loves (John 8:40 14:11, Acts 4:19-20), but often trades for chains. Here there is no need for endless propaganda, such as is used in the dissolution of the human spirit into a mould for man to make into stop-gap gods who gape and understanding nothing, do anything: truth speaks without force or subjugation. It is free, and inspires freedom, which darkness ever desires to subjugate.
It is precisely these facts which lead constantly, continually and consecutively in much of the Western world to amazement, horror, aghast goggling and appalled emotion as the retrogression of morals, ethics, law, order and safety, of security in the streets proceeds on a grand scale, guns in corridors for some schools and murderers investing them with their bullets, as if a spree on drugs of the body, mind or spirit were as much part of life as trams.
DOING JUST ANYTHING is precisely the spirit and consequence of BELIEVING NOTHING.
The light indeed shines in the darkness, which fails, as John 1 tells us, to comprehend, to apprehend and to seize it. It seized Christ, and it is trying to seize the children of light, whether by force even now in China, or in the Sudan in massacres and vilenesses unspeakable, or by stealth and hidden threats, as in Australian colleges and universities more broadly than one would like to think, as in the USA; and this ? lest freedom should endure, or truth should hold sway. It will not succeed, but like Hitler, and better than he in darkness, it will seek to engulf and impress and distress and conform and co-ordinate all to its sullen and sunken, its all too well-hidden treasure, stored in the ocean depths of intolerance and inanity.
Such is the sure destiny of what rejects truth, in favour of cultural tyranny, unspiritual blindness, anti-empirical insistence, unscientific obfuscations that confuse issues (cf. Secular Myth or Sacred Truth, Government Composite) and religious combinations which fudging all things, foster darkness as a candle snuffer the light of its flame.
The Prince of light and truth, Jesus Christ, on the contrary, instils all that makes man even interesting: nobility, self-sacrifice, honesty, integrity, willingness to suffer rather than be seduced spiritually, mentally or physically, grace, graciousness, kindness, helpfulness, serviceability, reliability, humility, realism, mercy, loving-kindness, and brings man into the kingdom of heaven, not as a phrase, but as a fact, not as a fantasy but as an activity, not as a hope but as a fellowship.
Foretold in Daniel 9, as were the Empires, in Daniel 7-8, this ultimate Prince, to be set at nought, was given a predicted death date of extreme significance, one set at what may be computed at 30 A.D.. This is, like the imperial predictions, an amazing arithmetical presentation and confirmation. Being well-fulfilled when that date came, some 6 centuries later, with a precision merited by the wonder of His task, it saw Christ, where ? It was on the Cross as prepared, prophesied and portrayed. But WHEN did this prophecy find its result! It was just when Christ, consistent as always, brought to fruition this sacrificial death at the very time for so long foretold.
This crucial event of all time lies marked out, inimitable, indefeasible, firstly of all, for that marvel of the atonement for sin which Christ supplied; then for the love which did it, and for the mercy which prompted it, and finally for the power which achieved it. It is never easy to remedy personal sin, and this does it!
This work, presented with arithmetical precision, a fitting prelude to the passion of Him who knowing all things, and the heart of man, knows His own mind and is omniscient with the same majesty as soars through His mercy: it is the best of surgery for those who receive Him, and that without scalpel. His Cross-culminating and consummating work is infinite in compassion, in efficacy, in exhibiting with accuracy the nature of sin, both in those who crucified Him and in the very horror of the crucifixion itself, wrought before sin came, in the heart of God, for the bearing of sin for the recipients of His mercy, and then wrought in history itself (cf. Ephesians 1:4, Revelation 13:8), in the power which brought Christ alive from the tomb, and that from the corruptly misused law’s point of view, the thief of His own body (cf. *8 infra).
In Daniel 7, the Lord is shown receiving the final authority over all peoples, as the Son of Man, who in the realm of deity has full glory (as further seen in Revelation Ch. 2:9 and Ch. 5 passim). This resembles the vision of Isaiah 48:16, which shows God sending the Redeemer, as rays from the sun, yes as His own exact expression, to use the wording of Hebrews 1, whose throne is the throne of God Himself*6.
Further detail on the predicted, and later performed payment for sin on the part of Deity Himself, is seen in Isaiah 49-53, Psalm 16, 22, 49, Hosea 13:14, Psalm 22, Zechariah 2:8 with 3:9, 12:10-13:1, Micah 5:1-3, for example. As precise in time, so is this portrayal eminently graphic, detailed and stainless in sincerity, pure in integrity and effectual in its objective.
The Messiah's payment for securing, for those who receive Him, the inestimable magnificence of entry into this spiritual life, that with God as Father and Himself, blessed Redeemer, has been what this world cannot touch; for man can by no means redeem his brother, though he may well aid his damnation through spiritual seduction (Psalm 49). It is His power which this world cannot control, though it loves to think shed blood and seduced consciences make reality its slave; and it even makes universal laws for its squadrons of suppression to follow, which truth-seekers in the Lord, not following, at once invalidate. Truth is not made by politics, but proceeds from God, without whom there neither is nor could be any (cf. Barbs ... 6 -7, SMR Chs. 3 and 10).
In Christ is the harmony this world cannot offer, for what breaches reality MUST of necessity be breached BY it, simply because this is what is there. Ignore a lamp-post and collide by all means; but this does not remove the fact of its existence, rather inclining to remove your own life. As Christ declared, "Whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, will find it," (Matthew 16:25).
Not in breaches and over-reaching, in implausible teachings and arrogant assertiveness, false to the heart and invalid to the mind, is life to be found; but in logical sensitivity, in spiritual alertness, in honesty and integrity, instituted by Christ as He rescues us from the ravages of savageries that ignore the very spirit of man.
Indeed, these readily imprison in some places for the very mention in any strength of man's spirit and the question of his spiritual needs. In Him however, is the only validated, verified, confirmed, authenticated answer*7, found in the Bible, foretold from millenia ago, fulfilled in detail ever since as God has brought to man, the answers of the heart of which sin has robbed him.
To all ? but not so. As Titus 2-3 and John 3, Colossians 1:19ff. make so enormously clear, it is with passion offered to all*3A; but it is received by only some, who enter by the gate, the constraining gate, and thus find the narrow way.
It is, then, for the Evangelical and Believing Body of Christ, that this blessed path becomes like a highway, though it is not broad; for to this there is no addition nor subtraction to its way and way (Isaiah 35:8, Proverbs 30:6). Under Him as the Head, with His word, the Bible, their direction and succour, as many as take Him, that He becomes their inward spring, strength, guide and wisdom (Proverbs 30:6,I Corinthians 1:30, John 4:14), while their blessed loss is the power of sin to control, and gain the grace of Jesus the Messiah to pardon, empower and lead: since He is then IN YOU, Christ the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27, cf. Romans 8:1-10), by His Spirit (cf. Ephesians 3:16).
Thus, as foretold, offered to all, He is found by MANY. Isaiah 53 makes this predictively clear, advising in particular that by His knowledge - that of the impact of sin vicariously borne - the righteous Christ would justify MANY. It is so also in Isaiah 53:1-5, for all whose sins are borne are there identified as those who are healed of their ultimate sickness, their iniquity. By no means all are so healed, and by no means do all receive Him: and that, that too is precisely as He declared (Matthew 7). If however there is restriction in the reception by man, there is none in the bounty of God who would have all, in heaven as on earth, reconciled to Himself (Colossians 1).
It is in this same Prince of life (Acts 3 cf. Daniel 9), in Him that the way of life is constituted. It is in Him that there is provision to enter into His rest (Hebrews 4, foretold in Isaiah 11:10 cf. Matthew 11:28-30); for there is no other but He who has the answers of the heart, the mind and the spirit of man, and with these, proceeds to restore by the power of His resurrection*8, abundant spiritual life to those limp byproducts of sin and creation, at times galvanised by disastrous dynamics: the children of men.
See for example:
Tender Times for Timely Truth
The Grating Grandeur ... Ch. 2; SMR pp. 925ff.;
Beauty for Ashes Ch. 6 (and Hong Kong, and the movement of nations in the last century a concern),
with News 98, News 37.
See SMR pp. 968ff..
Cf. His Wounds ... Ch. 4, *5 - brief survey of relevant past, SMR pp. 886ff.. See also on this series of Daniel: Cyrus and Christ, Ch. 1, Biblical Blessings.
For more extensive coverage of elements, items and concepts biblically in this field, see further:
The Pitter-Patter of Prophetic Feet Ch. 1 with
Highway of Holiness Ch. 10.
See Unam Sanctum in SMR Index. This was a pronouncement by Pope Boniface VIII, which sought to arrogate to the Romanist religion all power in all the temporal and spiritual dimensions, the power of rule of this world and of ruling in regality the spiritual domain. The statements which are concurrent strain credulity; but they are in line with the history prophetically depicted (cf. I Timothy 4, Revelation 13,17-19).
On this, see SMR pp. 946ff..
From SMR p. 903, we have this:
Though Jesus Christ turned down the devil in the offer of just powers (Matthew 4:8-10), here in Europe was one who would use them, and that in Christ's name! Thus in the famed 'Bull', Unam Sanctam, Boniface VIII, pope, wholly contradicts Christ, as if by an antithetical and angry, carnal spirit, in bold style. Its vigour and virulence reminds one of the manner and approach of Satan, when tempting Christ in the wilderness (Matthew 4): always against and 'beyond' the word of God, that spirit sought to seduce. It has fared better with some who misuse the name of Christ than with the Master Himself; and false christs have indeed come, merely attesting once more the absolute mastery of Jesus Christ in His person OVER Satan - to whom so many fall, in predicting what was to come in serpentine seductions from the truth which - as He claimed - He was and is (John 14:6, 8:58). But let us taste for edification and awareness, the flavour of the papal literary liquor.
'Truly he who denies that the temporal sword is in the power of Peter, misunderstands...' declared this Pope. Speaking of swords, symbols of power and rule, one for the things temporal, or of this world, and one of things spiritual, he added: 'both are in the power of the church...' As to the temporal sword, that trifle, it is also in the power of the church, 'by kings and captains but at the will and by the permission of the priest' (Bettenson: Documents of the Christian Church, p. 160).
These absurd pretensions are like the words of a 'Peter' who, instructed to put up his sword in defence of Christ, the very Head of the Church, changed the record and not merely refused to do so, but seemed to imply that Christ should join him in a world beating parade of military force, or that he should stir up at the 'will' of Christ the rulers to employ their force at His will and fight those who would not. But Christ simply said. "Put up your sword " (Matthew 26:52), and later to Pilate, announced with His sublime authority:
My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here... (John 18:36).
It follows with blessed simplicity that any 'kingdom' that is of this world, that does promote fighting for its will in military matters, is not Christ's.
Whose is it ? Revelation 13 is explicit here in terms of the coming world kingdom, and with Chapters 17:1-6 and 18 reveals what the above principles of Christ already make so clear. To insist, as is done in Unam Sanctam, that salvation requires obedience to the Pope, merely means that this other kingdom denies access to consistent Christians, for they are forbidden to so much as call any man on earth Master (Matthew 23:10); whereas the one able to send them unaided to hell is very much their Master.
Beauty of Holiness Ch. 2,
The Glow of Predestinative Power Chs. 1, 4, 8,
SMR Appendix B,
Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 8,
The Christian Pilgrimage Ch. 3,
How Great is the God We Adore Ch. 3, 3 Epilogue.
Beauty of Holiness Ch. 4, and with this, a further account of similar grounds of decline.
For early reviews of the development in Europe in or near our time, see firstly, the area of values and objectives, then that of power.
A) Objectives ... and direction
Outrageous Outages, Awesome Inputs and the Courage of Christ Ch. 5 ,
Three Anzas, One Answer Ch. 5, Ch. 1 and Ch. 2 (NATURE of Europe, and objectives with special reference to Israel)
Beyond the Crypt ... Ch. 1
Christ the Cumulative and the Culmination Ch. 4
Cascade of Mercy, Torrent of Truth Ch. 10
A) and B) SMR pp. 923ff.),
His Wounds Opened Eternity
(and meaning, and EU constitution).
The Wit and Wisdom of the Word of God ... Ch. 6 (Britain and Europe, principles of integration and disintegration in Europe) cf. With Heart ... Ch. 10.
The Grating Grandeur ... Ch. 2
The Divine Agenda Ch. 3 explores some of the past-present developments and dynamics.
In this composite field, the following note from Bon Voyage Ch. 3, *2 provides some depth and breadth.
Re the background for the prophecies and the movements of Europe towards their certain fulfilment, see:
His Wounds Ch. 3, *7, Three Anzas ... Ch. 2, Christ, the Cumulative and the Culmination Ch. 4
Now they are to draw "inspiration from the cultural, religious and humanist inheritance of Europe": this is to be found in one version of the EU Constitution draft (see His Wounds ... Ch. 3). The vacuum to meaning, motive and direction is phraseologically secure. On the underlying humanism, see Christ, the Cumulative and the Culmination Ch. 4. This, with the background of the 'mysterious' (see Kant in Predestination and Freewill Section IV, and in SMR Ch. 5) becomes a perfect ground for the crop of man's declaration, via the antichrist, that he is God! (II Thess. 2). Europe is being formed for the day as if an embryo in the 7th month, already. See on the biblical background, also, SMR pp. 886ff, Highway of Holiness Ch. 10, Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 9.
B) Power, and development in this direction, including historical background ... SMR pp. 917-931. Dastardly Dynamics ... Ch. 4 (historical and current), Calibrating Myths ... Ch. 9, Cascade of Mercy, Torrent of Truth Ch. 12.
In general on Europe and its developments in biblical perspective, see:
SMR pp. 730-731, 886-888, 899-973A,
esp. 904 ff., 923-930, 955-956, 973A, 955-958.
The Pitter-Patter of Prophetic Feet Ch. 1 with Highway of Holiness Ch. 10 (comprehensive outline Babylon, Rome and Daniel-Europe );
Joyful Jottings 14, Divine Agenda Ch. 3,
Heart and Soul ... Chs. 9, 10, 11,
Trust God ... Ch. 7, His Time is Near Ch. 8;
Pall of Smoke and Diamond of Joy Ch. 10,
... Immovable Faith Ch. 4 (and Empire disposition)
with 10 (some survey of developments),
His Wounds Opened Eternity Ch. 3 (Europe is on its mark, getting ready ...),
Ch. 4, *5 (survey of relevant past),
What is the Wheat to the Chaff! Ch. 10,
Christ, the Cumulative and the Culmination Ch. 4,
Three Anzas, One Answer Ch. 5,
Outrageous Outages, Awesome Inputs and the Courage of Christ
Chs. 3, 5,
His Wounds Opened Eternity Ch. 3
(and meaning, and EU constitution);
Cascade of Truth ... Chs. 10 , 12 , Calibrating Myths... Ch. 9,
Heart and Soul Ch. 10.
See Appendix, to follow.
On this, for method see:
Wake Up World! ...Ch. 5 at Demonstration,
What is the Chaff to the Wheat Chs. 3 and 4
In application see, for example, the demonstrations of:
The Meaning of Liberty and the Message of Remedy.
Reason, Revelation and the Redeemer
Light Dwells with the Lord's Christ.
See, for example:
Great Execrations ... Ch. 7;
Barbs ... Appendix 3,
Biblical Blessings Ch. 15, Extended Endnote 2,
BIBLE TRANSLATIONS 33
Acme ... Ch. 11,
With Heart ...Ch. 3,
Spiritual Refreshings ...Ch. 5
The Magnificence of the Messiah, Endnote 1,
Dastardly Dynamics ... Ch. 11, SMR Ch. 6 and Index,
The Kingdom of Heaven Ch. 9, Section 14,
Joyful Jottings 25,
A Spiritual Potpourri 15, 16,
Stepping Out for Christ Ch. 5,
Things Old and New Ch. 2, Excursion 2A;
Light of Dawn Ch. 3,
Beyond the Crypt ... Ch. 2;
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 2;
Spiritual Refreshings ... Chs. 5, 6,
Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 8 (on resurrection and Lazarus, yes and both with Jerusalem); contrasting Greek bodily terms - Let God be God Ch. 2 ;
The Frantic Milleniium Ch. 4;
and on New Zealand,
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 6.