The true church has long considered the pope to be the biblical antichrist, but does he qualify?
Firstly, the term antichrist is found in Scripture in John’s first letter. John teaches that an antichrist is someone who denies Jesus is the Christ; denies the Father and the Son; and who denies that Christ has not come in the flesh to earth. A superficial reading of 1st John might suggest that this cannot apply to the pope because he does not deny these things. However, if he teaches that Christ is someone other than the Bible’s description of Christ, then he has denied the Father and the Son and denied that the Christ of Scripture has come in the flesh. This is the case for Mormons, Muslims, Unitarians, and other heretical preachers such as Joel Osteen who ‘preach’ to large crowds, but avoid preaching about sin and hell and preach a prosperity gospel which is not found in Scripture. The Christ they preach is not the Christ of Scripture but a construct of their own idolatrous imagination.
Secondly the antichrist, also called the man of sin (2 Thess. 2:4) ‘… opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God’. The popes, including the current one, oppose God and exalt themselves over God in various ways. They bring new revelations, they call traditions, such as the ‘immaculate conception’ and the bodily assumption of Mary. They alter the teaching of Scripture in many and profound ways, adding all kinds of will worship and accretions to the gospel. And he ‘opposeth’ himself above God, as one commentator puts it: ‘By his opposition of the general system to the gospel; the persecution of Wickliffe, of John Huss, of Jerome of Prague, of the Waldenses and the Reformers; the Inquisition, the cruelties in the reign of Mary, and the massacre of St. Bartholomew in France, are obvious illustrations of this’.
He also claims to sit in the temple of God, that is the church, and ‘sheweth himself that he is God’. While the Roman Catholic church is not a true church, it claims to be ‘the’ church nonetheless. And in it, he shows that he is God. How does the pope do that?
As Matthew Poole puts it ‘by pretended miracles, signs, and wonders, by pardons, indulgences, canonizing saints, dominion over princes and kingdoms, he shows himself as a God before men, and claims a power to be judged of no man, and to be judge of all men’. He also exalts himself above God in his claim of infallibility when speaking from the throne in introducing doctrine not found in Scripture; and by holding that the Scriptures are just a wax nose without the Roman Catholic church and thus the pope’s authority.
Many, including Protestants, deny that the pope (or the papal system) is either antichrist or the antichrist, but this in spite of his obvious undeniable qualifications. The antichristian nature of this pope was reinforced as recently as the 15th of April just passed, when pope Francis answered the question of a little boy who asked him whether his dead atheist father was in heaven.The pope repeated the boy’s question for those present: ‘A short time ago, my dad died. He was an atheist, but he had all four of his children baptized. He was a good man. Is Dad in heaven?’
The pope answered that the dead atheist father was a ‘good man’. He had a ‘good heart’ because he had his four children baptised. The pope pondered, ‘how does God respond to a man like that’, answering his own question: ‘A dad’s heart! God has the heart of a father’. Moreover, he added that because this ‘unbeliever’ had his children baptised ‘do you think that God would be capable of leaving him far from Him?’ Plainly a rhetorical question which argues this unbeliever is now in God’s presence.
The pope then asked his listeners whether God abandons his children. They responded ‘no’. The pope turned back to the little boy and assured him: ‘There you go, Emanuele, this is your answer. God surely was proud of your dad, because it’s easier to have your children baptized when you are a believer, than to have them baptized when you are not a believer. Surely, this pleased God greatly. Talk with your father, pray to your father.’
Thus for the pope, God is proud of an atheist who denies Christ, yet who baptised his child in the Roman Catholic church; that this pleased God; and that the boy can pray to his dead father.
I hardly need to show that this is all so contrary to Scripture that it is absurd. And yet tens of millions of people claim to be Christians and go to this church whose head is not Christ, but the pope who spouts such heretical nonsense.
I am aware that some Roman Catholics say that this fellow is not a ‘true’ pope, but that is not what their church says. He was elected by the cardinals and qualifies as their vicar of Christ.
In his teaching the pope shows that he does not believe in the Father and Son of Scripture, nor in the Holy Spirit who states clearly in holy Scripture ‘Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me Joh 14:6’; and ‘He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. Joh 3:36’