This week was an awkward one for the Catholic Church. In a show of power, the US Conference of Bishops voted overwhelmingly to deny communion to the nation’s second Catholic president, Joe Biden, due to his support of abortion, and in another embarrassment, hundreds of unmarked graves were discovered in Canada at residential schools that were run by the Church. These events are part of a bigger picture showing the unprecedented influence of the Roman Church over the world's most powerful nations.
ABC News reported (2021-06-18) under the headline US Catholic bishops OK steps toward possible rebuke of Biden,
U.S. Catholic bishops have overwhelmingly approved the drafting of a “teaching document” that many of them hope will rebuke Catholic politicians, including President Joe Biden, for receiving Communion despite their support for abortion rights
What we are seeing in the US, and in other world leading nations, is the Roman Catholic Church in an unprecedented position of power and influence.
In an NPR interview under the headline, U.S. Government Sees Wave Of Catholic Leaders (2021-01-24), the Church's position of disproportionate influence was outlined:
“Joe Biden is not the only Catholic to hold the reins of power right now - Speaker Nancy Pelosi, six Supreme Court justices, some eight of Biden's Cabinet picks and nearly a third of the lawmakers on Capitol Hill. It is a sea change in the political representation of a faith that not so long ago was viewed with suspicion in the United States…
President Biden's inauguration events foregrounded the Catholic faith. Cardinal Wilton Gregory prayed at the remembrance for COVID-19 victims. Father Leo Donovan delivered the invocation during the actual inauguration. And there were masses, prayer services throughout the week.
…World War II brought Catholics into the mainstream. Certainly, the Cold War brought Catholics into the mainstream. And then in the 1960s, we had this wonderful moment of Catholic confidence with the election of the first Catholic president, John Kennedy, the Second Vatican Council, that told us that the church and the modern world can live together and can reinforce one another. Joe Biden's very much formed by those experiences as a man of his generation would be. It's an ecumenical outlook. It's an interreligious outlook. It's an outlook that sees the modern world as an opportunity rather than a problem.”
So, six of the nine Supreme Court Justices are now Catholic (seven of nine if also considering those who attended Catholic schools). To date, there have only been 15 Catholic justices — out of 115 justices total — in the whole history of the Supreme Court. The current position of power and influence is completely out of proportion with the number of Catholics in the United States (approximately 25%) and yet it has evolved almost unnoticed. The days of Protestantism seem to have passed.
Out of the mouth of the false prophet
We note that the Second Vatican Council and its ecumenical spirit arose out of the French Revolution and is referenced in the sixth vial of Revelation 16:
"And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming out of the mouth of the dragon (Russia), out of the mouth of the beast (Europe), and out of the mouth of the false prophet (the Papacy). For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty. Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame. And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon" (verses 13-16).
Therefore, we see this frog like spirit in the teachings of the Catholic Church since the 1960s. This is part of the influence on the nations of the world which will exist at the time when the Lord Jesus Christ will return as a thief.
* G7 nation, global power ranking as of 2021.
When we look at the most powerful and influential nations we find that there is strong Catholic influence. As of June 2021, five of seven G7 countries are led by a Roman Catholic. Four of six of the most powerful countries in the world are led by a Catholic or Orthodox.
Boris Johnson's unthinkable move to Catholicism
Consider the prime minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, who recently converted to Catholicism. This is another sign that Protestantism is all but defeated in Britain as well. The Guardian made these observations, noting in the headline that A Catholic prime minister in No 10 is a watershed moment (2021-06-12):
“Who would have thought, when he became prime minister in 2019, that he would stop the balancing act and instead become a standard bearer for Roman Catholicism as the first occupant of No 10 to practise the religion?”
“But the issue that really merits attention is the significance of having a Catholic prime minister. In many ways, what is particularly noticeable is the lack of fuss about it. Once, given that the Church of England is the established religion of the country and that it was created following the break with Rome under Henry VIII, a Catholic prime minister would have been unthinkable. Even as recently as 2007, Tony Blair delayed his conversion to Rome until he had left office due to concerns that it would play badly in Northern Ireland.”
Next German leader may be Catholic
We will come back to Northern Ireland, but let's first consider Germany. Germany is to elect a new chancellor on September 26th. The front runner according to polling (by 8 points as of June 24th) is Armin Laschet, leader of the Christian Democratic Union and EPP in the European Parliament. Of course, Armin Laschet is a Roman Catholic. If he is elected, by the end of September six of seven G7 countries will be led by a Roman Catholic. Only Japan will remain.
The Irish Times commented on Armin Laschet and the influence of his faith, under the headline Catholic views shape politics of German CDU leader Laschet, Analysts will watch for religious influence in chancellor hopeful’s election manifesto. The article continues:
“Like Joe Biden, Berlin watchers say Laschet practises a liberal, progressive Catholicism but, similar to the US leader, the 60-year-old German makes no secret that his faith informs his political decisions.
“Catholics have a drive to shape things on a global level; embedded in the papacy, we are rarely nationalists,” he said last week, livening up a dry Brussels panel discussion.
The Great City that rules world leaders
Therefore, we see that the Mother Church reigns over the leaders and nations of the earth and is known for immorality (2Thes. 2:1-8) as the Bible foretold it would be:
"And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters (i.e. peoples, nations): With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication" (Revelation 17:1-2).
This system is also seen to be a "mother" religion and is associated with seven mountains (and as a tourist you can visit them in Rome) as well as the religion of ancient Babylon:
"And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH... And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth" (Verse 5,9).
This system is seen to be a "great city" which rules over world leaders and has far reaching influence and power over the nations of the earth who have become rich through this relationship:
"And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth... For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies" (Revelation 17:18; 18:3).
The conflict in Northern Ireland
One place where we see this power coming to bear is in Northern Ireland, which is pulled in two directions. On the one hand there are the “republicans” who are traditionally Catholic and would like to see Northern Ireland become part of the republic in the south which is an EU member state. On the other hand there are the “unionists” who are traditionally Protestant and are in favour of the north remaining part of the United Kingdom. The ongoing difficulty is seen in news reports of the Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party, the largest party, formally endorsing Jeffrey Donaldson as its new leader this weekend:
The DUP, which is rooted in the fundamentalist Free Presbyterian Church, opposed Northern Ireland’s 1998 peace accord. It later became reconciled to it and has shared power with the Irish Republican Army-linked Sinn Fein. The power-sharing relationship has often been strained, and the U.K's departure from the EU last year has shaken the political balance in Northern Ireland.
“Donaldson said one of his key priorities would be to “right the wrong” of the Northern Ireland Protocol, a post-Brexit trading arrangement between the British government and the European Union…”
The Northern Ireland unionist community has been angered by checks which they argue “amount to a border in the Irish Sea and weaken ties with the rest of the U.K.”
“This protocol is doing enormous harm to our economy, to confidence, to political stability and that’s why I believe that we’ve got to find another way of doing things that doesn’t do the harm the protocol is doing to Northern Ireland,” Donaldson said.
Now what we have seen and continue to see is the predominantly Catholic G7 leaders, like Joe Biden and Justin Trudeau, calling for the UK to uphold the Belfast Good Friday Agreement (as was the case recently at the G7 in Cornwall), joining the EU to put pressure on the UK to keep the protocol that governs the post Brexit customs arrangements. If not there is the threat of losing "political stability". The Protestants have the cards stacked against them.
In the past the Irish armed conflict was seen to be agitated by Catholic influence. A book was written on the subject, “Catholic Terror in Ireland” by Avro Manhattan. This contentious issue is one to watch in the coming months. We can expect agitation to continue, resulting in difficulty for Northern Ireland and pressure on London. The Vatican and Catholic Europe will continue to use the thorny issue of Northern Ireland to punish Britain for Brexit and to attempt to wield power over the United Kingdom.
This is as we would expect from Bible prophecy. Britain and the US will protest against Europe and Russia, who are seen to be under the influence of the Papacy (Rev. 17:3,12-13), when they will invade Israel at the time of the return of the Lord Jesus Christ (Eze. 38). What we are seeing today is leading toward this climax. We pray that by the Lord's mercy we will escape the troubles that lie ahead.
This has been Daniel Billington with you this week as we continue to watch the Bible in the news and events moving forward to the return of Jesus Christ to this earth.