Why the Pope Offends Muslims, Jews and Protestants

From the October 2007 Trumpet Print Edition

In September 2006, the pope offended Muslims by quoting a Byzantine emperor from the 14th century. Here is what the emperor said: “Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached” (emphasis mine throughout).

The pope apologized for offending Muslims, but didn’t retract what he said. And it was a shocking statement.

But here is something far more shocking: I didn’t notice anyone reminding the pope of his own church’s history! He discussed Mohammed’s “command to spread by the sword the faith he preached,” but the truth of history is that no church has spread its faith by the sword more than the Catholics!

The Vatican and Germany primarily comprise the so-called Holy Roman Empire. Six resurrections of that empire have come and gone. I defy anybody to show me a religious empire that has shed more blood in man’s entire history!

In spite of this bloody history, the pope is doing most of the criticizing and condemning.

The seventh head of the Holy Roman Empire is now on the scene in Europe. And the stronger it gets, the more aggressive the Vatican becomes. That empire has had a history of converting people to Catholicism with the sword for about 1,500 years. Bloodshed has repeatedly followed its strong criticisms.

The greatest hero of the Holy Roman Empire is Charlemagne. He waded through a sea of blood to win converts to Catholicism. Still, the last two popes have continually instructed Roman Catholics to remember and resurrect that “glorious” past! That is the opposite of repenting for past sins! Some European Union leaders even discuss how they are waiting for a new Charlemagne to get the Holy Roman Empire moving again. And nobody seems to be alarmed.

Have people forgotten the history of the Holy Roman Empire?

How about the Catholic crusades?

Most religious (and even secular) people are reluctant to criticize the Vatican. But the pope is hurling some scathing criticisms at others—especially other religions.

Since the Vatican is so critical, surely it can stand a little criticism too.

If we fail to learn from history, the bloodshed is going to get a lot worse. This world desperately needs to know where the Vatican’s aggression is leading. All religions have their faults. However, the Vatican acts like it is innocent.

Protestants Not Even a “Church”

In July, London’s Telegraph reported, “Christian denominations outside Roman Catholicism are either defective or are not full churches of Jesus Christ, the Vatican has reaffirmed. A 16-page document released by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which Pope Benedict xvi once headed, described Orthodox churches as true churches, but said they are suffering from a ‘wound’ since they do not recognize the primacy [state of being first!] of the pope.

“The document, approved by Pope Benedict, went on to say the ‘wound is still more profound’ in Protestant denominations. ‘Despite the fact that this teaching has created no little distress … it is nevertheless difficult to see how the title of “church” could possibly be attributed to them,’ it said. …

“While there was nothing doctrinally new in the document, it nevertheless prompted swift criticism from Protestants, Lutherans and other Christian denominations” (July 11). But the criticism was anemic compared to the pope’s scathing condemnation of their religions. The reason Protestants revolted in the first place was the corruption inside the Roman Catholic Church.

The pope can’t see how the Protestants could even have the title of “church” attributed to them! Quite an outrage coming from a church with such a bloody history.

This document criticized Orthodox churches almost as severely.

Other religions have a history of being afraid to criticize a powerful Catholic Church. That situation is only going to get worse as the Catholic Church rapidly grows in power and influence.

Jews Are “Blind”

Also in July, the Observer newspaper wrote, “Jewish leaders and community groups criticized Pope Benedict xvi strongly yesterday after the head of the Roman Catholic Church formally removed restrictions on celebrating an old form of the Latin mass which includes prayers calling for the Jews to ‘be delivered from their darkness’ and converted to Catholicism. …

“However, the older rite’s prayers calling on God to ‘lift the veil from the eyes’ of the Jews and to end ‘the blindness of that people so that they may acknowledge the light of your truth, which is Christ’—used just once a year during the Good Friday service—have sparked outrage.

“Yesterday the Anti-Defamation League, the American-based Jewish advocacy group, called the papal decision a ‘body blow to Catholic-Jewish relations.’” Still, the Vatican continues to allow use of the ceremony, and Jewish criticism is becoming muted. The Vatican is certain that it sees Jewish blindness, but what about its own blindness?

We all remember that the Nazis killed 6 million Jews in World War ii. There is an abundance of proof that the Vatican helped more Nazis escape at the end of the war than any other institution by far!

How could that happen if the Vatican hadn’t been allied with Adolf Hitler? Is that history a prophetic insight, showing that history is about to repeat itself? Is this the kind of “light” the Vatican wants to give the Jews? Does the Vatican think it was following Christ in those evil deeds?

“The pope also sparked bewilderment when he made no mention of anti-Semitism, or the fact that the Nazis killed millions of people because they were Jewish, in a speech last year at Auschwitz. He also failed to acknowledge that there might be some degree of collective responsibility of the German people” (ibid.).

Is this the voice of a church that has repented of its sins? These are mind-numbing facts that we can’t ignore! And yet the Vatican goes around castigating all other religions and acting like it is the repository of all righteousness. It is a deadly sign of where the European Union is headed!

The Catholic Church has over a billion members and wields frightening power within the European Union and in this world. (For a thorough understanding, request our free booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.)

Where are these events leading? If people knew, and just understood their history books, they would be deeply disturbed.