FROM MORAL MAJORITY TO TEA PARTY
"The freedom of the Church meant both the freedom of the Church as a corporate body to teach, to evangelize, to organize its life, and so forth, and the freedom of the individual to receive that teaching, to conform his life to the church’s dictates, and so on. . . The primary aim of Dignitatis Humanae was, then, to defend, and indeed to restore, the principle of “the freedom of the Church,” as a corporate, visible body, with the right to evangelize, to speak to the consciences of citizens and rulers. . ." (Robert P. George & William L. Saunders in "Church, State & Conscience")
A POLITICAL ACTION PLAN GOES INTO HIGH GEAR
In the case against the Church of Rome for unleashing on the American nation religious fanatics who indulge in vociferous cant about religious freedom but scorn the essentials of individual liberty, the Roman Catholic hierarchy is indicted by the activities of its own clerics and authorized lay representatives. On the record is the Pastoral Plan of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops published in 1975. The following is quoted from Paragraph 28 of the Statement Issued by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops:
28. Accomplishment of this aspect of this Pastoral Plan will undoubtedly require well-planned and coordinated political action by citizens at the national, state, and local levels. This activity is not simply the responsibility of Catholics, nor should it be limited to Catholic groups or agencies. It calls for widespread cooperation and collaboration. As citizens of this democracy, we encourage the appropriate political action to achieve these legislative goals. As leaders of a religious institution in this society, we see a moral imperative for such political activity.
The Bishops then moved to achieve the "widespread cooperation and collaboration" and the "appropriate political action." Although the primary focus was on abortion, what followed was a broad onslaught of Roman Catholic ideology based on the papacy's Social Doctrine. (Cf. However heartfelt, opposition to abortion).
It would be a serious mistake to think that the Church of Rome suddenly burst on the American scene in 1975. In fact the presence and influence of the papacy in America was traced by Pope Leo XIII himself all the way back to Columbus' discovery of the continent (The Pope recognizes . . .) His reference to George Washington reveals a papal policy of cultivating cordial relations with the leaders of the nation. Why? The probable reason is that once the leaders are neutralized, Rome is free to propagandize the masses with her ideologies, and they become drunken with her wine,. This is what has happened in the United States of America (Cf. "Making America Catholic") Today there is not a single prominent voice in the nation that is speaking out against the religio-political influence and ambitions of Rome. To the contrary, leaders seek the counsel of the Vatican, [Nancy Pelosi - (There was in fact not only intervention on Capitol Hill . . .) and yield to the lobbying of Roman Catholic bishops (Barbara Bradley Hagerty then stated as follows . . .) Oblivious of the destructive influence of Rome, they praise the Pontiff and the papal hierarchy for their "moral" influence on the world. The President of the United States praises Pope Francis as "somebody who lives out the teachings of Christ" (President Obama is a fan of Pope Francis;) but the Bible does not lie. Here is the Divine viewpoint on the papacy.
What happened after the Bishops' Pastoral Plan of 1975 is well-documented, and yet sadly overlooked. Roman Catholic activists authorized by the Roman Catholic hierarchy engineered the creation of the Moral Majority, which appeared on the surface to be a Fundamentalist Protestant movement (The bishops' Pastoral Plan prompted the creation of the Moral Majority.) Two of the most prominent Catholic activists were Richard A. Viguerie (note this name, because he is still on the scene and very active) and Paul Weyrich (now deceased) (At the heart of the Moral Majority; Cf. But who is the Religious Right?) The Moral Majority folded in 1989, because of the TV evangelists' scandals (Moral Majority Folds,) but the Pastoral Plan and the Roman Catholic activists remained. The Christian Coalition succeeded the Moral Majority. Paul Weyrich had a hand in creating this organization, which still exists today, although secondary to the Tea Party (Paul Weyrich; Cf. Remembering the New Right.)
ENTER THE TEA PARTY PHASE OF THE POLITICAL ACTION PLAN
The Tea Party movement arrived on the scene in 2009, appearing at first to be a purely grassroots, populist movement against big government, big business, big national debt, and big taxes (History of the Tea Party Movement.) That it is much more than this has become abundantly clear. The Pastoral Plan is alive and well, and so is Richard Viguerie (Blasting ‘big-government GOP,’ Viguerie plots ‘Takeover’; cf. Onward Christian teavangelicals; Teavangelicals are latest incarnation of religious right and Moral Majority cultural movements; The Tea Party's religious roots exposed.) The following November, 2010, report is very significant in the light of the present (September, 2013) insane budget battle in the US Congress, in which the Tea Party members are controlling the Republican leadership:
While we all watched the election returns and followed Sarah on Twitter, two generations of religious right leaders announced plans for Wednesday, when they will to get to work consolidating the strength of the Tea Party.
Richard Viguerie, often credited with developing and implementing the direct mail technology that helped build the new Christian right in the late 1970s, held at an election night event for tea partiers in Washington. He told them to get a good night’s sleep, eat a good breakfast, and then, Wednesday afternoon, get on with the work of taking over the Republican party. Long critical of “country club Republicanism,” Viguerie said in a press release:
"The next stage of the Tea Party movement — Tea Party 2.0 — means taking over the GOP at every level from precinct captain to state chairman, and nominating one of our own for president.” (Tea Party 2.0, Ready For Post-Election Launch [Web page appears to have been taken down])
In the budget battle on Capitol Hill, there is an aspect of the Republicans' intense focus on repealing or fatally crippling the Affordable Care Act that is either overlooked or ignored in the news media. This is the fact that the Roman Catholic hierarchy opposed final passage of ACA:
For nearly a century, the Catholic bishops of the United States have been and continue to be consistent advocates for comprehensive health care reform to ensure access to life-affirming health care for all, especially the poorest and the most vulnerable. Although the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) did not participate in these cases and took no position on the specific questions presented to the Court, USCCB's position on health care reform generally and on ACA particularly is a matter of public record. The bishops ultimately opposed final passage of ACA for several reasons.
First, ACA allows use of federal funds to pay for elective abortions and for plans that cover such abortions, contradicting longstanding federal policy. The risk we identified in this area has already materialized, particularly in the initial approval by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) of "high risk" insurance pools that would have covered abortion.
Second, the Act fails to include necessary language to provide essential conscience protection, both within and beyond the abortion context. We have provided extensive analyses of ACA's defects with respect to both abortion and conscience. The lack of statutory conscience protections applicable to ACA's new mandates has been illustrated in dramatic fashion by HHS's "preventive services" mandate, which forces religious and other employers to cover sterilization and contraception, including abortifacient drugs. . . (Bishops Renew Plea To Congress And Administration To Repair Affordable Care Act.)
From the perspective of the Bishops, these are not minor objections. This article Catholic Doctrine and Reproductive Health WHY THE CHURCH CAN’T CHANGE lays out in stark terms the reason for the Church of Rome's dogged opposition to abortion and family planning, and the Vatican's related political action plan. This is an explosive struggle to the death, and millions of Americans are innocent bystanders threatened by the fallout. Of the most profound significance is the fact that this a fundamental factor in the fulfillment of Rev. 13.
TWO MAJOR PERSONALITIES IN THE TEA PARTY MOVEMENT
AND THEIR IDENTIFICATION WITH THE ROMAN CATHOLIC HIERARCHY
There are two personalities who stand out in the rise to power and influence of the Tea Party, and consequently the Roman Catholic hierarchy. The one is Richard Viguerie Richard A. Viguerie, who has been a major figure in the implementation of the Pastoral Plan from the beginning, the other is Robert P. George, who has come to prominence more recently. Viguerie's role in the Tea Party movement has already been described and documented. Some space needs to be devoted to Professor George, a man of a powerful intellect which has been devoted to the cause of neoconservative, religious right politics, and the advance of the Roman Catholic agenda in the United States. This man is described by the New York Times as "a Roman Catholic who is this country’s most influential conservative Christian thinker." This profile of Robert P. George reveals the vast scope of the man's influence:
On a September afternoon, about 60 prominent Christians assembled in the library of the Metropolitan Club on the east side of Central Park. It was a gathering of unusual diversity and power. Many in attendance were conservative evangelicals like the born-again Watergate felon Chuck Colson, who helped initiate the meeting. Metropolitan Jonah, the primate of the Orthodox Church in America, was there as well. And so were more than half a dozen of this country’s most influential Roman Catholic bishops, including Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, Archbishop John Myers of Newark and Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia. At the center of the event was Robert P. George, a Princeton University professor of jurisprudence and a Roman Catholic who is this country’s most influential conservative Christian thinker. . .
Two months later, at a Washington press conference to present the group’s “Manhattan Declaration,” George stepped aside to let Cardinal Rigali sum up just what made the statement, and much of George’s work, distinctive. . .
George looked on with arms crossed and lips sealed. But he was obviously pleased. To anyone who knew George’s work, the cardinal’s words sounded very much as if George had written them, and when I asked him about it later, he acknowledged providing assistance. Rigali’s remarks were a summation of the distinctive moral philosophy that is the foundation of George’s power. . .
FOR 20 YEARS, George has operated largely out of public view at the intersection of academia, religion and politics. In the past 12 months, however, he has stepped into a more prominent role. With the death of the Rev. Richard John Neuhaus, a Lutheran minister turned Roman Catholic priest who helped bring evangelicals and Catholics together into a political movement, George has assumed his mantle as the reigning brain of the Christian right. . .
Last spring, George was invited to address an audience that included many bishops at a conference in Washington. He told them with typical bluntness that they should stop talking so much about the many policy issues they have taken up in the name of social justice. They should concentrate their authority on “the moral social” issues like abortion, embryonic stem-cell research and same-sex marriage, where, he argued, the natural law and Gospel principles were clear. To be sure, he said, he had no objections to bishops' “making utter nuisances of themselves” about poverty and injustice, like the Old Testament prophets, as long as they did not advocate specific remedies. They should stop lobbying for detailed economic policies like progressive tax rates, higher minimum wage and, presumably, the expansion of health care — “matters of public policy upon which Gospel principles by themselves do not resolve differences of opinion among reasonable and well-informed people of good will,” as George put it. . . (The Conservative-Christian Big Thinker.)
Professor George is chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, an extraordinary example of the deceptive nature of his ideology. His writings appear on the surface to advocate religious freedom; but careful reading reveals the opposite. A review of a collection of his essays on the subject of Religious Liberty and Freedom of Conscience states the following (inter alia):
One of the essays is dedicated to the topic of religious freedom. Human rights, including the right to religious liberty, are among the moral principles that all should respect, including governments, George affirmed.
Different faith traditions have varying positions on what constitutes religion, with different doctrines and structures. One element common to all is the human effort to live in right relation to the divine and to understand a body of truths and to live in accordance with those truths.
Respect for a person’s well-being requires respect for their efforts to order their lives according to the principles of religious faith. Faith of any type cannot be authentic unless it is free, George maintained.
Given that a person’s spiritual life is integral to their fulfilment and the realization of basic human goods, it makes sense, from the perspective of reason, and not just according to religious ideas, to understand religious freedom as a fundamental human right.
Just as it would be wrong to compel an atheist to perform religious acts that he cannot in good conscience believe in, so too the rights of believers should be respected.
There are limits on religious liberty, George clarified, as evil and injustice can be committed by people for the sake of religion. There is, however, a broad and powerful presumption in favor of respecting religious liberty, he concluded.
Note the highlighted phrases. They are very significant. The Roman Catholic conception of "evil and injustice" do not always conform to what is normally defined as such. In Freedom means responsibility Professor George states:
Contrast this understanding of conscience with what Newman condemns as its counterfeit. Conscience as "self-will" is a matter of feeling or emotion, not reason. It is concerned not so much with identifying what one has a duty to do or not do, one's feelings and desires to the contrary notwithstanding, but rather with sorting out one's feelings. Conscience as self-will identifies permissions, not obligations. It licenses behavior by establishing that one doesn't feel bad about doing it - or at least one doesn't feel so bad about doing it that one prefers the alternative of not doing it.
I'm with Newman. His key distinction is between conscience, authentically understood, and self-will - conscience as the permissions department. His core insight is that conscience has rights because it has duties. The right to follow one's conscience and the obligation to respect conscience - especially in matters of faith, where the right of conscience takes the form of religious liberty of individuals and communities of faith - obtain not because people as autonomous agents should be able to do as they please; they obtain, and are stringent and sometimes overriding, because people have duties and the obligation to fulfill them.
Central to this essay is the idea that there is an equivalency between what he calls self-will and license. Note the highlighted passage.
What is at the heart of Robert P. George's ideology is revealed in Church, State & Conscience. He and his co-author rationalize papal principles of religious freedom:
While Pius X speaks to the church’s right, Dignitatis Humanae speaks of the individual’s right. These rights do not contradict each other. The Church presents the truth undiminished and may demand that its members adhere to its tenets. But individuals are to be free in the civil order to heed the Church—to join the Church and even to leave the Church—or not, even if they are mistaken in that choice. Dignitatis Humanae expressly “leave[s] intact the traditional Catholic teaching on the moral duty of individuals and societies towards the true religion and the one Church of Christ” (DH 1)3—precisely the moral duty that Pius X was at pains to assert4—but supplements that teaching with new (but not contradictory) teaching on how the individual is to find that truth.5
The teaching of Dignitatis Humanae that (subject to the demands of public order) neither the state nor anyone else may exercise coercion on the individual in matters of religion appears to be a development of the teaching of a successor of Pius X—Pius XII. According to John Courtney Murray’s account,6 in a discourse to Italian journalists in 1953, Pius XII approached the issue by referring to the parable of the tares (Matt. 13). Therein, Jesus tells the story of the master whose enemy sows weeds among his wheat. When his workers ask if they should remove the weeds, the master says, “Let them grow side by side until harvest time, and at harvest time I shall direct the reapers to collect the weeds first, bundle them up and burn them, but to bring the grain into my barn.”
Pius XII drew the lesson that to facilitate civil peace and the common good in the face of modern pluralism, “The duty of repressing religious and moral error cannot . . . be an ultimate norm of action. It must be subordinated to higher and more general norms which in some circumstances permit, and even perhaps make it appear the better course of action, that error should not be impeded to promote a greater good.”
In effect, Vatican II acknowledged that modernism had recognized an important truth, but removed from context, it was merely a half-truth. Modernism rightly emphasized the dignity of individual conscience, for the entire Christian message likewise turns on this; but modernism was wrong to believe that the untutored conscience could direct the state to truth, to moral ends. And it was wrong to seek the “privatization” of religion and the marginalization of the Church, whose role, as bearer of truth, is to challenge and exhort individuals and communities to just and upright living.
Modernism was correct to recognize, and to organize political power around, the dignity of the individual, his reason and free will; but it failed to recognize that freedom could not be exercised responsibly by an ill-formed or unformed conscience. The primary aim of Dignitatis Humanae was, then, to defend, and indeed to restore, the principle of “the freedom of the Church,” as a corporate, visible body, with the right to evangelize, to speak to the consciences of citizens and rulers. . .
If the freedom of the Church is recognized, the foolish monism of modernism will be replaced by a new version of the old dual sovereigns. Where once there was emperor and Church, now there will be “the constitutional democratic state” and the Church, with the Church, through its teaching and evangelization, mobilizing consciences to (among other things) guide and check the state. Restoring the freedom of the Church replaces modernism’s half-truth with full truth. It acknowledges the “corollary” to religious freedom (which modernism ignored) by restoring the balance between the individual conscience in search of truth and the wise teacher of truth.
Professor George leaves no room for doubt about the intentions of the Vatican and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The papacy claims the right to teach everyone, whether or not they are willing students.
ANOTHER POWERFUL INTELLECT AND AN ANARCHIST MENTALITY
"Ted Cruz" is a name that has burned itself into the public consciousness. Like Professor George he is reported to have a powerful intellect. A Republican Voice With Tea Party Mantle and Intellectual Heft:
“I’d have predicted that he would be a professor, not a politician,” said Robert P. George, Mr. Cruz’s adviser at Princeton in the early 1990s. Professor George, a noted social conservative, said that Mr. Cruz stood out even among his Ivy League peers as “intellectually and morally serious,” writing his thesis on the separation of powers. . . .
Political elders and experts who have watched him during his time here as state solicitor general and on the campaign trail predict that he will be an intellectual force in Congress on behalf of constitutional limits on federal power.
Note that Professor George was his adviser at Princeton University. Ted Cruz's intellect makes his antics in the U.S. Senate the more reckless and reprehensible; but there is method to his madness. He is promoting his presidential ambition and the Tea Party's agenda. Cruz, Tea Party Hero, Rankles Senate G.O.P. Colleagues:
Mr. Cruz’s 21-hour, all-night assault on the Affordable Care Act — which ended rather anticlimactically on Wednesday after the Senate voted to take up a budget bill that Democrats intend to alter to their liking — has focused national attention on the 42-year-old agitator, who is only nine months into his first term in the Senate but appears to have greater ambitions. On Tuesday night as he spoke, his political action committee was hosting a $2,500-per-plate fund-raiser in Washington. A television provided a live feed of his speech.
Mr. Cruz’s efforts have helped re-energize a sizable contingent of conservatives who felt leaderless and demoralized after Republicans lost seats in Congress and the White House last year.
Groups like FreedomWorks, Heritage Action for America and Tea Party Express have relished picking fights with Republicans like Mr. Corker, whom they dismiss as turncoats. And this week they mobilized as part of a carefully choreographed and mutually beneficial effort to rally conservatives behind Mr. Cruz’s cause.
The cause of Ted Cruz is the cause of Robert P. George and the Tea Party. That this is the cause of the Roman Catholic hierarchy is already well documented. There is no daylight between Ted Cruz and the Roman Catholic Social Doctrine (Cf. HOW THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SOCIAL DOCTRINE IS ADVANCING IN AMERICA):
Cruz, who turns 42 in December, represents an amalgam of far-right dogmas—a Paulian distaste for international law; a Huckabee-esque strain of Christian conservatism; and a Perry-like reverence for the 10th Amendment, which he believes grants the states all powers not explicitly outlined in the Constitution while severely curtailing the federal government's authority to infringe on them. Toss in a dose of Alex P. Keaton and a dash of Cold War nostalgia, and you've got a tea party torch carrier the establishment can embrace. . . .
But something else happened to Cruz at Princeton: He came under the tutelage of Robert George, the original thinking man's tea partier. A Catholic political theorist whom the New York Times once dubbed "this country's most influential conservative Christian thinker," his big idea is what's known as "new" natural law. It's a spin on natural law, a foundational principle best summed up by the Declaration of Independence's promise that people are "endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights"—freedoms that are every human's birthright and that governments must protect. The basic idea behind natural law is that, just as the world is informed by laws of mathematics and physics, so too is it shaped by a set of ethical precepts. George's theory is that this moral order can be divorced from its theological overtones entirely; even an atheist could grasp it by "invoking no authority beyond the authority of reason itself," as he puts it.
Applied to politics, however, George's theories look a lot like classic Christian conservatism. The clearest example is abortion, which George attacks not by citing Scripture, but by arguing that terminating a pregnancy violates the natural order. If abortion contradicts natural law—and natural law is, as George believes, the basis of the Constitution—then it's not a stretch to argue that the 14th Amendment should grant full citizenship to fetuses.
George met regularly with Cruz and advised him on his senior thesis, an analysis of the history and meaning of the 9th and 10th amendments. They work in tandem: the 9th implies that people have many more rights than are specifically outlined in the Bill of Rights; the 10th reserves unspecified powers for the states. For a growing movement of conservatives, these amendments have taken on an almost religious import as a very real check on the federal government's power: Delivering the mail and fighting pirates is all well and good, but don't even think about forcing a sovereign state like Texas to set up a health insurance exchange.
Titled "Clipping the Wings of Angels," Cruz's thesis draws its inspiration from a droll passage, attributed to James Madison, in Federalist 51: "If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary." The drafters of the Constitution intended to protect the rights of their constituents, Cruz argued, and the last two items in the Bill of Rights offered an explicit bulwark against an all-powerful state. "They simply do so from different directions," Cruz wrote. "The Tenth stops new powers, and the Ninth fortifies all other rights, or non-powers." In other words, they sharply delineate the role of the federal government and preserve individual rights—at least those that the states don't claim the authority to govern. As Cruz saw it, though, his beloved amendments had been trampled by decades of jurisprudence. Government was granting itself powers it couldn't be trusted to wield; it was playing God with the Constitution.
Cruz's worldview has remained unflinchingly consistent. Challenged at a Federalist Society panel in 2010 to defend his proposal to convene a constitutional convention to draft new amendments aimed at scaling back federal power, he paraphrased his 21-year-old self: "If one embraces the views of Madison...which is that men are not angels and that elected politicians will almost always seek to expand their power, then the single most effective way to restrain government power is to provide a constraint they can't change."
One thing had changed, though, in the two decades since Cruz penned his thesis: His views had started to creep from the fringe to the fore. . . .
Other cases he took on reflected his conservative Christian ideology. On his campaign website, he touts successfully defending the inclusion of the term "under God" in the Texas Pledge of Allegiance and a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the state Capitol. . . . (Underscored emphasis added.)
Ted Cruz is intent on a complete takeover of the Republican Party by the Theocons, and in this he is in accord with the Roman Catholic hierarchy and its representative Richard Viguerie - the hierarchy having set its objective in 1975, and Viguerie as recently as this year (2013.) Actually, the Vatican has had extraordinary control of the Republican Party since the end of the twentieth century. What more do Rome and Richard Viguerie want? Whatever the extra degree of control sought, Cruz is seeking to accomplish it; or he is a loose cannon seeking to promote himself:
Critics think the Tea Party senator is being self-defeating, but his antics make sense if he's actually trying to remake the Republican Party in his image. . . .
But let's suppose Cruz sees something (or is betting on something) that his opponents in the Republican Party don't see. Then his actions make a lot more sense. He is not a terrorist or a bomb thrower. He is a Leninist. He wants to sow discord among his erstwhile allies so that he can seize control. . . .
Suppose you thought that the Republican coalition is fracturing, that traditional Republican leadership can no longer hold the party together . . .
Suppose you are also convinced that Obamacare will be a total disaster. . . .
If you think both these things are true, then what Ted Cruz is doing makes some sense. Cruz wants to take over the Republican Party. He could try to organize the Tea Party as a third party, but that is a risky proposition, and it could easily fail. Representational systems like the one we have in the United States, which lack proportional representation, are generally unkind to third parties. It's true that the Whig Party fell apart in the early 1850s and was succeeded by the Republican Party, but since that time no third party has won a majority of either house of Congress or the presidency.
So the prudent move is to take over the existing GOP's operations and transform it in the image of the Tea Party, with the goal of becoming the dominant party once again. . . .
The Vatican and its hierarchy are indifferent to the damage done to nations, so long as Roman Catholic hegemony is the ultimate result; and this applies whether or not Ted Cruz is a loose cannon:
THIS is the man who forced the United States government to shut down yesterday.
His name is Ted Cruz. He is a junior politician who occupies no official leadership position. But having served as a US Senator for just 10 months, Cruz has established himself as the de facto leader of America's ultraconservative right wing and positioned himself for a divisive presidential run. . . .
The shutdown has already rattled financial markets around the world and forced about 800,000 public sector workers off the job. It's estimated the ordeal will cost the economy about $300 million a day, Bloomberg reports. All of this and more because Cruz pushed his party into an irresolvable standoff.
The evidence is overwhelming that since 1975 the Roman Catholic Church has been in control of an alliance of Catholics and Protestants organized to aggressively promote the Vatican's agenda, with Protestants serving as a front to conceal Rome's involvement in the political activities which are furthering the agenda. The objective of this agenda is to achieve papal dominance in the United States and throughout the world. The public statements of the Pope and members of the Roman Catholic hierarchy cannot be trusted. History reveals the devious and deceitful history of this Institution which does not change, and does not waver from its purpose over centuries of time. There has been no change in Rome's objective for the United States in the decades since 1975.
CHAOS THREATENED BY THE TEA PARTY'S ACTIVITIES
It is too easy to indulge in wishful thinking that the disruption of the regular processes of governance in the United States is an unintended consequence of the Roman Catholic hierarchy's political action plan. A. T. Jones was inspired with profound insights into the thinking of Pope Leo XIII and the papacy in general. Note the havoc currently being wreaked on the effective working of the United States federal government, and ponder this closing passage from A. T. Jones' 1895 Third Angel's Message #3 titled "The Papacy" -
I must read a few more statements and make a few more comments. I read from the Catholic Standard of November 3, 1894, as follows:
There is an awakening, a metamorphosis, uneasiness and hope. The tradition is that in ancient Rome there were such strange expectations while the tragedy on Golgotha was being enacted and even now mysterious voices may be heard announcing that Great Pan is dead. What new order will arise? Will humanity be once more its own dupe? and will the old evils appear again under new names to people the world once more with false gods? Who knows?
The idea is suggested there that nobody knows what the answer will be. Now he tells:
What we do know is that a world is in its death agony.
Is it not time that Seventh-day Adventists knew that thing full well too? The papacy knows that the world is in its death agony. do you know that? If you know it, is it not your place to tell it to the world, as well as it is the place of the papacy to tell it to the world? What has God given us this message for all these years but that we may show that the world is in its death agony and that we may tell the people so, that they may turn to the Author of life and be saved when the agony brings the last result? The papacy knows this, and she is acting in view of it. I will now read the rest of the sentence:
What we do know is that a world is in its death agony, and that we are entering upon the night which must inevitably precede the dawn.
Of course we are. "Watchman, what of the night? Watchman, what of the night? The watchman said. The morning cometh, and also the night."
Continuing I read:-
In this evolution, the church, in the eyes of the pope, has a mission to fill.
This is in view of the times to come. What is she looking for? A world in its death agony. All nations uneasy, society racked, everything going to pieces as it is. The papacy sees all that is going on and expects it to go on until the finish, and out of the agony and the tearing to pieces that comes with it, she expects to exalt herself once more to the supremacy over the nations, as she did of old. And she is going to do it; we know that. The Scriptures point that out.
She sees precisely what we see. We see the world in its death agony. We see society racking itself to pieces. We see thrones trembling. She sees that too, and she proposes to exalt herself upon what comes through all this at the end. We see that coming. We know she is going to do it, for her triumph comes out of this death agony. She gains new life herself and then glorifies herself upon it, living deliciously. . . .saying in her heart, I sit a queen and am no widow and shall see no sorrow. Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death and mourning and famine. And she shall be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the God who judgeth her.
Are we not, then, in the very whirl of events that brings that thing before the whirl shall stop? We are in it; the whirl is going on. What are we here for but to tell the people that the world is in its death agony and to call upon them to flee to Him who is the life of all?
Has not the papacy had experience in just that thing? Has not the papacy seen, practically, the world once in its death agony? The Roman Empire was the world; all civilization was embraced within its limits, was under its control. She saw the Roman Empire go to pieces; she saw universal anarchy there. As the world then stood and then was, she saw the world once in its death agony, and out of that death agony of the world she exalted herself to the supremacy that she had in the Dark Ages and wrought the mischief that cursed the world so long. She sees the same elements working again--the same movements again going on among the nations, and she congratulates herself. "We did it once. Once I rose upon the ruins of that thing. I will do it again. That demonstrated to the world in that day that I was superior to all earthly things. This will demonstrate to the world in this day--large as it is--'I am, and there is none else beside me.' I shall be a lady forever. 'I sit a queen and am no widow and shall see no sorrow.'"
That is her tone. That is what she is watching for, and God has opened this up to us in the prophecies that are before us and he wants us to call to all the people that the world is in its death agony. She raised herself upon the ruins of the death agony of the Roman world, and after the pattern of her old experience, she proposes to do the like thing now. She will succeed; that is certain. And it is likewise certain that her success will be her certain ruin, and therefore, "Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins and that ye receive not of her plagues." [For the connection between our times and those of A. T. Jones cf. Some Historical Background.]
Rome is not afraid of wrecking the US federal government to accomplish her ends! Also note that when central civil government is weakened, the Pope reigns supreme (Cf. An Excellent Portrayal of Hypocrisy.)
The dark night of papal supremacy (Rev. 13:12, Dan. 11:45, Isa. 2:2-3,) and oppression of all who resist the Roman Catholic dictatorship (Rev. 13:15-17,) followed by the personal appearance of the power behind the papal throne (Rev. 13:2b & 4a;) Isa. 14:12-14; Rev. 17:3b & 8,) is looming, but it will come to an end in judgment from the throne of God (Rev. 16,) and the glorious appearing of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will follow swiftly (Rev. 19:11-21.)