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CHRIST or ANTICHRIST?By David Jon Hill
Events are plunging toward the eventful climax of Christ's return. How will you know the REAL CHRIST when he comes?
IS the Pope ignorant of the plain Bible statements that label HIM "the Antichrist"? What deception will Satan use to keep the world from realizing the Pope's true identity?
God's Word warns us that this man — masquerading as a great "Christian" leader — will finally declare himself to be GOD! (II Thes. 2:8.) If he calls HIMSELF "God," whom will he point to as the ANTICHRIST?
Catholic Interest in Prophecy
God declares that the end-time Pope will be a false PROPHET, yet the Pope has never declared himself to be a prophet. When will he deceive the world into thinking that he foresees future events? What events will he foretell? How will these prophecies affect YOU? How can you keep from being deceived?
A recently published book reveals a startling Catholic interest in end-time prophecy. This book, together with tradition and the writings of some of the "early church Fathers," brings to light an eye-opening preview of the false prophecies that are about to be preached!
Satan knows God's general plan. He has been at work in the minds of evil and deluded men throughout the ages to lay the groundwork of the GREAT DELUSION! Though the vials of the wrath of God are poured out on sinful men, their impenitence remains — "AND THEY REPENTED NOT" (Rev. 16:9). They will flee from Christ — even calling for rocks to fall on them, hiding out in caves — RUNNING AWAY FROM GOD!
Because of "that man of sin... who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he IS GOD... even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and LYING wonders, and with ALL DECEIVABLENESS." THAT MAN WILL TELL THE WORLD THE BIGGEST LIE EVER TOLD! Into the ears of those who do not have a love of the truth he will pour the LIE that our returning King, JESUS CHRIST, IS THE ANTICHRIST! And they will believe him because God will have sent them a "strong delusion that they should believe a LIE"! (II Thes. 2:3-11).
But upon what will the Pope base this claim?
By its own admission, the Catholic Church bases its definition of the articles of faith on its OWN interpretation of the Scriptures AND TRADITIONS as explained in the writings of the early church "Fathers"! "And then it was approved by all, that THE TRADITIONS should be received as of equal authority with the Scriptures" ("History of the Council of Trent," page 145).
Any attempt to dispute their interpretation by use of plain Scripture is greeted, as it was at the time of this declaration, with the cry of "HERETIC" and branded as "Anathema"! "... the holy Scripture CANNOT BE EXPOUNDED AGAINST THE SENSE HELD BY THE HOLY MOTHER THE CHURCH, nor against the common consent of the Fathers" ("History of the Council of Trent," page 152).
Catholic Definition of Antichrist
Here now, for the professed prophecies in the Catholic Church's recently published book, "Prophecy for Today."
"Towards the end of the world Antichrist will overthrow the Pope and usurp his See"! ("prophecy" of Abbott "Merlin" Joachim, died 1202; see also "Catholic Encyclopedia," article "Antichrist.")
Because they will not admit the truth the Church believes the Antichrist will be the one to unseat the Pope, while every Bible prophecy commissions the true Christ with that job.
"Antichrist will fight a successful battle at Mageddo [Armageddon] in Palestine after which... he will hereafter become lord of the world" (Ibid; Anna Catarina Emmerick, d. 1824). It is almost impossible to see how they could believe this! But there it is! And here is more! "The Kings will send armies to the Holy Land, but the Antichrist will slay them all"! (Ibid.; "Venerable Maria of Agreda." d. 1665). Compare this with Revelation 19:19.
But to continue. "Antichrist and his army will conquer Rome, kill the Pope and take the throne... The Jews will come from everywhere, and accept Antichrist as the Messiah." (Ibid.; from a "prophecy" by Venerable Bartholomew Holzhauser, d. 1658).
Just one more quote to illustrate their satanic definition: "After the destruction of Rome, Antichrist will appear and exalt himself above pagan deities and the Trinity... Coming to Jerusalem, he will succeed through false preaching, miracles, gifts, terror, aided throughout by the devil. An evil spirit will come out of the air and descend upon his followers. HE SHALL FEIGN A RESURRECTION FROM THE DEAD, cause rain to fall... and perform other wonders, all through the power of the devil... The Jews will welcome him." (Ibid.; Richard Rolle of Hampole, d. 1349).
Compare With Your Bible
Hippolytus is one of the "early church Fathers" upon which the Catholic church depends for inspiration and dogma. Get your Bible, and compare the plain statements of Scripture, the Word and authority of Almighty God, with the blasphemous prophecies made by Hippolytus about the year 170 A.D. Satan very cleverly inspired this early writer to pen these prophecies just a hundred years after the true Church of God had to flee to Pella. Since that time there have been scattered prophecies by many important men and women in the Catholic church on this subject of greatest importance — even up to as recently as 100 years ago.
HIPPOLYTUS begins by saying, "Believe NOT the enemy who is to COME AND BE SEEN, for he is an adversary and corrupter and son of perdition, and deceives you; and for this reason he will kill you, and smite them with the sword" ("Ante-Nicene Fathers;" Hippolytus, section XXIX).
GOD'S Word says, "Behold, he [Jesus Christ] cometh with clouds; and EVERY EYE SHALL SEE HIM... and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him" (Rev. 1:7).
"And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should SMITE the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God" (Rev. 19:15).
Hippolytus goes on to say: "... at that time the whole earth will bewail the life of anguish, and the sea and air in like manner will bewail it; and the sun, too, will wail; and the wild beasts, together with the fowls, will wail; mountains and hills, and the trees of the plain, will wail on account of the race of man, because all have turned aside from the Holy God, and obeyed the deceiver, and received the mark of that abominable one, the enemy of God, INSTEAD OF THE QUICKENING CROSS OF THE SAVIOR" (Ibid.; section XXXIII).
God's clear revelation shows that the time when the families of all the earth are going to bewail for anguish is the time of Christ's return. "And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise anymore: The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones... fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and SLAVES, and SOULS OF MEN... The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, WEEPING AND WAILING"! (Rev. 18:11-15.)
Hippolytus: "And in the presence of all he exhibits himself as taken up into heaven with TRUMPETS and SOUNDS, and the MIGHTY SHOUTING of those who hail him with INDESCRIBABLE HYMNS; the heir of darkness himself shining like light, and at one time soaring to the heavens, and at another descending to the earth with great glory, and again charging the demons, like angels, to execute his behests with much fear and trembling. For he will show forth his demons brilliant like angels, and he will bring in hosts of the incorporeal without number" (Section XXXIII)..
The Holy Spirit through the revelation of YOUR BIBLE says: "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a SHOUT, with the VOICE OF THE ARCHANGEL, and with the TRUMP OF GOD: and the DEAD IN CHRIST SHALL RISE first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to MEET the Lord in the air"! (I Thes. 4:16-17.)
As for Hippolytus' "demons brilliant like angels," Daniel tells us that the resurrected and changed saints "shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars [angels] for ever and ever"! (Dan. 12:3.) See also I Cor. 15:50-53.
And the "indescribable hymns" — "And they sung as it were a new song before the throne... and NO MAN COULD LEARN THAT SONG but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were REDEEMED from the earth... the FIRSTFRUITS unto God and to the Lamb"! (Rev. 14:3-4.)
More From Hippolytus
"Then that abominable one [if this is not blasphemy against the very God of Heaven, what is?] will send his commands throughout every government by the hand at once of demons and of visible men, who shall say, 'A mighty king has arisen upon the earth; come ye all to WORSHIP him; come ye all to see the strength of his kingdom: for, behold, he will give you corn; and he will bestow upon you wine, and great riches, and lofty honours. For the WHOLE EARTH AND SEA OBEYS HIS COMMAND. Come ye all to him'" (Ibid., section XXXVII).
Revelation 14:6-7: "And I saw another fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation and kindred and tongue and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and WORSHIP him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountain of waters [and therefore the whole EARTH AND SEA OBEYS HIS COMMAND]."
When these false "prophecies" are read from pulpits into the ears of gullible people and they begin to see God's intervention come to pass, THEY WILL BELIEVE THE ONLY MEANING THEY HAVE EVER LEARNED ABOUT THESE SIGNS AND WONDERS... AND BE CONVINCED THAT THE GLORIOUS CHRIST RETURNING IN TRIUMPH IS IN TRUTH THE ANTICHRIST!
A more modern prophetess of the Catholic Church has this to say about this time of preaching: "Whole nations will join the Church shortly before the reign of the Antichrist. These conversions will be amazing. Those who shall survive shall have to conduct themselves well. There shall be innumerable conversions of heretics, who will return to the bosom of the Church" ("Prophecy For Today;" from Anna Maria Taigi d. 1837).
These false doctrines and false prophecies are going to be preached with ALL DECEIVABLENESS, and are truly going to deceive ALL THE WORD. You and I, when we enter God's Kingdom at His return, are going to have to convince these people of the TRUTH.
Being God's Born Sons Not an Easy Job!
The whole world will be up in arms AGAINST Christ. The chaos from years of pestilence and plague, the devastation of hydrogen and nuclear wars of cosmoscide will have to be CLEANED UP. Complete anarchy will take over in all the countries of the world as the earthly governments collapse; order will have to be restored. This CANNOT BE DONE OVERNIGHT.
It will take painstaking effort, even AFTER the complete cooperation of the population of the earth is gained! Human nature will resist the Government of God to the bitter end!
It's not going to be easy to convince these hysterically frightened, demoniacally deceived, pitifully desperate human beings! This last generation, sinful as it is, will need the full compassion and mercy you will be able to give as God's Sons. You will need every ounce of spiritual power and wisdom God will give you to perform the JOB of rehabilitating millions of crazed, completely deceived men left on this earth.
They will be gaunt, wild-eyed! They will have seen more horrible things happen in their lifetime than all the pages of history have yet recorded.
Driven in stark, raving FEAR AND OPEN TERROR from their homes, they will seek to hide from the newest and most overawing manifestation of WORLD-SHAKING POWER that they have yet seen — the only thought in their tortured minds will be that HERE IS YET ANOTHER ENEMY IN THIS SICK, HELL-TORN EARTH... HIDE, HIDE, HIDE!!!
HIPPOLYTUS agrees with WHAT will happen, but he calls the ONE WHO CAUSES IT TO HAPPEN the ANTICHRIST and not the TRUE CHRIST! "Then will he send the cohorts of the demons among MOUNTAINS AND CAVES AND DENS OF THE EARTH, to track out those who have been concealed from his eyes, and to bring them forward to worship him" (Ibid., section XXIX).
The Bible tells us from WHOM men will hide in the rocks, "And the Kings of the earth and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves IN THE DENS AND IN THE ROCKS OF THE MOUNTAINS; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb" (Rev. 6:15-16).
You, as a born son of God, may have to be one of those who is sent out to track down these frightened people. You may have to counsel with them and assure them that the true living God has returned to the earth and that there will be peace from that time forward.
Here is another false prophecy from Hippolytus.
"And by reason of the SCARCITY OF FOOD, all will go to him and worship him; and he will put his mark on their right hand and on their forehead, that no one may put the sign of the HONORABLE CROSS upon his forehead with his right hand; but his hand is bound" (Ibid., section XXVIII).
Now turn to the Book of Zechariah in your Bible, and read what the true, triumphant, returning Christ will do to the nations of this earth in order to get them to worship Him. "And it shall come to pass, that every one that is LEFT of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso WILL NOT COME UP of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the Lord will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of ALL NATIONS THAT COME NOT UP TO KEEP THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES" (Zech. 14:16-19).
The Eternal God, at His return, is going to cause the nations of this earth to recognize Him as Ruler and to worship Him through the means of CONTROLLING THE WEATHER, causing drought and famine — SCARCITY OF FOOD — until ALL NATIONS COME UP TO KEEP THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES!
Giant Rehabilitation Program
The "mop-up operation" that will follow the return of Christ, in which you may be employed, will be the greatest in all history!
It is difficult to realize the total chaos that will exist! The truth of your Bible revealed in the pages of Revelation is not just "apocalyptic writing" — but these revelations are from the Almighty God who foresaw this end of civilization and realized as He told us Himself in Matthew 24:22 that, "Except those days should be shortened, there should NO FLESH BE SAVED ALIVE!"
So let your mind dwell for a moment on the REALITY of this. Let the truth sink in! This will be a time such as the earth has NEVER FACED BEFORE.
No ships are plying the sea, no forests cover the mountainsides, no grass clothes the plains, whole islands have disappeared into the sea, mountain chains have been wrenched out of shape, peaks have become valleys and valleys have become plateaus. Even the earth itself is not circling the sun in its proper orbit, but reeling like a drunken man through the solar system!
In a situation such as this only those who have God's truth could be expected to be sane!
"The public service of God shall be extinguished... at that time SILVER and GOLD shall be cast out in the streets, and none shall gather them; but all things shall be an offense" (Ibid. Hippolytus, section XXXIV).
The "public service," the Catholic Mass, will not be allowed! Silver and gold won't be worth anything to man, BECAUSE YOU CANNOT BUY GOD — only repentance will be worth anything in that day! "And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he arises to shake terribly the earth. In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship to the moles and to the bats!" (Isa 2:19-20.)
The supreme government on earth is the Government of God. Christ Himself, with all of the saints born into His Kingdom with Him, and the multitudes of Israel coming out of captivity are abiding in peace at Jerusalem. "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In his days JUDAH SHALL BE SAVED, AND ISRAEL SHALL DWELL SAFELY: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that they shall no more say, The Lord liveth, which brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; But, The Lord liveth, which brought up and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the NORTH COUNTRY, and from ALL COUNTRIES whither I had driven them; and they shall DWELL IN THEIR OWN LAND (Jer. 23:5-8).
The first twenty-six verses of Jeremiah 31 repeat again the establishment of peace and God's rule at Jerusalem over Israel and over His born-again sons. Read it yourself!
During this same time, "He shall judge among many people, and rebuke STRONG NATIONS AFAR OFF; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" (Micah 4:3).
Then, after a period of time — including the three and one-half years of the ministry of Jesus Christ which He has yet to finish as a personal ministry to Israel — those of us who are the born sons of God AND the physical seed of Israel will go forth from Jerusalem to establish government, peace and prosperity. The laws of God will be taught to all the peoples of the earth, beginning at Jerusalem. "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will SOW the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man, and with the seed of beast" (Jer. 31:27).
When you come to them and say, "This is THE WAY, WALK YE IN IT!" (Isa. 30:21), when you begin to explain to them that the Christianity they have known is FALSE, that the Sabbath is the seventh day of the week — even when you are able to read the thoughts of their minds — it is STILL GOING TO BE DIFFICULT TO BRING THEM TO THEIR SENSES! They will have been deceived ahead of time by a clever satanic-inspired prophecy. They will believe that you will be teaching exactly these things which they have been told are false! Yes, believe it or not, Satan knows the Scripture — he TREMBLES AT GOD'S WORD BECAUSE HE KNOWS IT WILL COME TO PASS! And he will have tried his best, by his method of CONFUSING THE FACTS, to so deceive this last generation as to frustrate the plan of God in setting up His government in the millennium. Even though Satan himself is restrained at this time from FURTHER deceiving the nations, HE HAS ALREADY DECEIVED THIS LAST GENERATION!
Listen to this satanic delusion: "Antichrist will be an ICONOCLAST [against idols]. Most of the world will adore him. He will teach that the CHRISTIAN RELIGION IS FALSE, confiscation of Christian property is legal, SATURDAY IS TO BE OBSERVED INSTEAD OF SUNDAY, and he will CHANGE THE TEN COMMANDMENTS [that is, restore them in their ORIGINAL FORM, including the declaration against idols]. All his wonders could not be written in a book. They will be more wonderful than the Old and New Testaments!... he will READ PEOPLE'S MINDS, RAISE THE DEAD, REWARD HIS FOLLOWERS AND PUNISH THE REST"! ("Prophecy For Today;" from Dionysius of Luxemberg, d. 1682.) AND, "... He will begin by affecting RESPECT FOR THE LAW OF MOSES" (Ibid.; from Frederick William Faber d. 1863).
The Pope's Prophecy
Here we see in full the prophecies this end-time false prophet will preach! He will attribute Jesus Christ's intervention in world affairs to the person and the workings of Antichrist!
Christ is the One who is AGAINST IDOLS! Christ is the One who will show how perverted this world's "Christianity" has become — that it is a FALSE RELIGION! CHRIST is the Lord of the Old Testament whose day of worship is the seventh day, INSTEAD OF SUNDAY! CHRIST is the One who GAVE the Ten Commandments in their ORIGINAL FORM, and will restore them. CHRIST IS THE ONE WHO WILL RAISE THE DEAD AND REWARD HIS FOLLOWERS... HE IS GOD, AND THERE IS NONE LIKE HIM!
So we see here the diabolical plot hatched by this professed "Christian" leader. Here is the age-old attempt of Satan the Devil to arrogate to himself and to his deceived minions the OFFICE OF GOD; while he attributes the intervention of the True Christ in his returning glory to the PERSON AND ACTION OF ANTICHRIST!
This charges the office and work of the Holy Spirit as having its origin as a WORK OF THE DEVIL, AND CONSTITUTES UNPARDONABLE SIN!
These diabolical thoughts, ensconced in the fear-ridden minds of completely deceived human beings, WILL BE DIFFICULT TO DISLODGE! You will need all the power God bestows on you as His born son to do the job He will give you to do.
Peace at Last!
Egypt is an EXAMPLE of all the nations who refuse to come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles, to recognize God as the Ruler of the earth. Then we see the last rebellion put down as those from the far corners of the earth up in Siberia, and in the provinces of China — the farthest spot on earth from Jerusalem — will swoop down upon Jerusalem in a vain effort to take away the great riches that God has bestowed on His peace-loving people. A thousand years of peace and prosperity, health and happiness stretch beyond that time that cannot be imagined in your mind.
And think of it, brethren, YOU have been called to help God bring His peace to this earth! You are offered a sonship in the Kingdom of God to teach other people how to become God! By overcoming yourself daily. By getting close to God in prayer and Bible study. By learning how to live YOURSELF. By setting a Christian example in overcoming the petty sins that weight you down.
As one last illustration of the reality of this fact please turn to Isaiah 19, and begin reading in verse 16, "In that day shall Egypt be like unto women: and it shall be afraid and fear because of the shaking of the hand of the Lord of hosts, which he shaketh over it... In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptian shall serve with the Assyrian. In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land: whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, BLESSED BE EGYPT MY PEOPLE, AND ASSYRIA THE WORK OF MY HANDS, AND ISRAEL MY INHERITANCE"! (Isa. 19:23-25.)
This is real, brethren, and you need to realize it!
THE REWARD OF THE RIGHTEOUS IS NOT ETERNAL RETIREMENT, BUT A REAL DOWN-TO-EARTH, 24-HOUR-A-DAY JOB... EMPLOYMENT FOR ETERNITY, JOYFUL WORK!