In 1986 the pope of Rome, John Paul II, held a massive interfaith gathering in Assisi, Italy, billed as a “World Day of Prayer for Peace”. It was attended by representatives of many religions of the world. And back then, a quarter of a century ago in the wake of this momentous gathering, I wrote the following in the Bible Based Ministries Newsletter: “On October 27, members of different religions came together at Assisi, birthplace of Roman Catholic ‘saint’ Francis, for a day of prayer. This was at the instigation of the pope. Around the world, three governments and guerillas in 11 lands held a 24-hour truce. 12 religions were represented, and prayed for peace.
“Such is the power of this man over the peoples of the earth, that at his call, top leaders of 12 different religions gathered from around the world, and even governments obeyed him! They came together to pray in direct contradiction of God’s Word, which commands true Christians to be separate from the world, and not to come together with those still in darkness. What a ‘Babylon’ took place here!”
A religious “Babylon” indeed, and one in which no true Christian could take part, for it was an abomination to the Lord. John Paul II declared before the event that the representatives of the different religions would not pray together, but they would offer up their own prayers, in accordance with their own traditions, in the presence of the representatives of the other religions! This, he said, would show their “respect for the prayer of others and for the attitude of others before the Divinity”. He said that “Christians” (i.e. Roman Catholics and those ecumenical “Protestants” present) praying apart, but at the same time as people of other religions were praying, would be a “humble and sincere witness to Christ, Lord of the Universe”. The lies of the serpent! A direct violation of such passages of God’s Word as 2 Cor. 6:14-18, which forbids any kind of yoking together with unbelievers in religious matters, and of Jn. 14:6, in which the Lord Jesus stated emphatically that He alone is the way, truth, and life, and that no man comes to the Father but by Him.
And now, 25 years later, a second Assisi event was held on October 27, 2011. The Vatican invited representatives of various “Christian” denominations (“Christian” in name only!), as well as representatives of the Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Shinto and many other religions to be present, and also people of no religion. In the end, some 176 representatives gathered at Assisi on October 27.
But before analysing this event, let us go back to the original one in 1986, and take a look at that:
The 1986 Assisi Event
The choice of Assisi 25 years ago was a deliberate one. In the words of the superior of the Franciscan convent in Assisi, the Roman Catholic “saint”, Francis, appeals to both believers and non-believers because Francis “incarnated those high aspects of humanity, simplicity, humility” which enable people to recognise each other as brothers and sisters, and to see all of creation as the work of the same hands that made them. The truth, of course, is very different. Francis was no saint, no Christian, and his doctrine of creation and of brotherhood between creatures was a totally false and unbiblical one. But the Papacy deliberately chose Assisi for the hosting of the event because it would resonate with many around the world.
Consider how that day unfolded. The pope of Rome gave an opening address. This was followed by an ecumenical “church” service (i.e. all those false professing “Christians” together), while members of other religions prayed at the same time in their respective meeting-places. All this was utterly unbiblical: first, that professing “Protestants” would obey the Roman Antichrist, condemned in God’s Word as the Man of Sin and Son of Perdition (2 Thess. 2); second, that they would participate in an ecumenical service, contrary to 2 Cor. 6:14-18 and various other Scriptures; third, that they would attach any value at all to the prayers of representatives of false religions, when the Bible is so clear that the religions of the world are all of satanic origin! The religions represented on that day included Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims, Baha’is, Shintoists, snake worshippers from Togo, and representatives of various other religious groups! Romans 1 is crystal clear: “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things” (vv.22,23). See, too, Psa. 115:3-9. That people calling themselves “Christians” could support the concept of prayers to creatures, including even snakes, and to hideous idols of wood and stone, is so shocking as to almost defy credulity – and yet it happened! But it got worse. Towards the end of that horrible event, both so-called “Christians” (oh, so plainly false “Christians”!) and representatives of other religions all met together in the Roman Catholic Basilica of St. Francis, where each religion was permitted five minutes to pray in its own way, with intervals of silence between the prayers of each! What a denial of the absolute uniqueness of Christ (Jn. 14:6), of giving worship to the Lord alone (Matt. 4:9,10), and of prayer to the Father only in the Name of the Son only (Jn. 14:13,14; 16:23,24)! What blasphemy! What vile abomination!
Then, immediately afterwards, John Paul II appealed to those who were fighting anywhere in the world to lay down their arms for the duration of the event – and in Nicaragua, El Salvador, and other places, his appeal was actually heeded.
Let us now examine the 2011 Assisi event in the light of the 1986 Assisi event.
The 1986 event was heavily criticised for its syncretism, and, acutely aware of this, the Vatican tried to avoid similar criticism of the 2011 event. At a press conference held prior to the event, Romish Cardinal Peter Turkson said that each representative of the various religions would pray according to his own beliefs. And Giovanni Maria Vian, the Jesuit editor of the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, said that neither John Paul II at the 1986 event, nor Benedict XVI at the 2011 event, intended to promote syncretism. He said, “Assisi is not just an ecumenical meeting. Ecumenism is an irreversible path…. Assisi is not just an inter-Christian meeting, but a meeting with the other religions, without a syncretism that mixes everything indistinctly.” Was he telling the truth? To find out, we must answer the question: What is religious “syncretism”? If we define it, we can ascertain whether the Assisi event was syncretistic or not.
One type of syncretism claims that there is no unique religious revelation, but rather that there are many ways to reach God. This is also known as religious pluralism. But this version of syncretism is not the Papacy’s version, because Rome believes that it alone is the one true religion, the one true Church, and that all others are false. Another type of syncretism, however, is that which seeks to create a single world religion by taking elements of each religion and merging them into a new religion, so as to make this new religion acceptable to all. This comes much closer to the Papacy’s vision of syncretism. Although not out to create a new religion, for it believes that it alone is the true one, it nevertheless has for centuries willingly incorporated into itself various elements of pagan religions, creating what Alexander Hislop rightly called a “baptized paganism”. Its adoption of the ancient heathen festivals which commemorated the birth and death of the sun god, renaming them Christmas and Easter and retaining all the heathen elements of those festivals after first “catholicizing” them, provides a very clear illustration of this; but there are many others. Believing itself to be the one true religion on earth, it nevertheless willingly takes on board all kinds of heathenish doctrines and practices, so as to maintain its hold upon the masses. According to its own official statement on the matter, issued at the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s: “The Catholic Church rejects nothing which is true and holy in these [other] religions. She looks with sincere respect upon those ways of conduct and of life which… often reflect a ray of that Truth which enlightens all men.” She believes she has all the truth, but other religions have some truth. At the same Council she declared: “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator…. Nor is God himself far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God….” And all this was again stated by the Roman pope, Paul VI, in his encyclical Evangelii Nuntiandi: “The Church respects and esteems those non-Christian religions because they are the living expression of the soul of vast groups of people…. They are all impregnated with innumerable ‘seeds of the word’ and can constitute a true preparation for the Gospel”.
Seen in this light, then, the first Assisi event in 1986 was most decidedly syncretistic. In fact, this was virtually admitted by Jorge Mejia, who back then was the vice-president of the Pontifical Commission Iustitia et Pax. He said the Assisi gathering demonstrated the “hidden convergence” or “incipient but real unity” of the world religions which underlay their differences. And these differences, he added, “from God’s point of view did not constitute an obstacle to their coming together for prayer, but on the contrary made it desirable.” Words such as “convergence” and “unity” are unmistakable in their meaning.
The 2011 Assisi Event
And just as at the 1986 Assisi event, the 2011 event was blatantly syncretistic as well! Again, just consider the programme for the day:
Upon arrival in Assisi, delegates went to the Roman Catholic Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels, for a moment of commemoration of earlier meetings and further reflection on the topic of the day. The Roman pope and some other religious leaders gave an address there. The large numbers of people outside were able to follow the proceedings on giant screens set up in the square outside the basilica.
Then there was a light meal, “to express our coming together in fraternity”. Is light in fraternity with darkness? Not according to God’s Word! Therefore, the leaders gathered there “in fraternity” were all in the darkness, the darkness of the prince of darkness himself. It was a gathering of brothers all right, but brothers in the devil’s kingdom.
Next, a time of silence for personal reflection and prayer was held. But once again it must be said categorically: prayer to anyone except the Father, in the Name of the Son, is false prayer! It is nothing less than prayer to demons!
Then various religious leaders rose to speak. And lastly, there was a silent pilgrimage to another Roman Catholic basilica, the Basilica of St. Francis, which was an attempt (according to Turkson) to “symbolize the journey of every human being in the assiduous search for truth and the effective building of justice and peace.” But this is not what true Christianity is about, and it just shows yet again the antichristian nature of Roman Catholicism and of all other “Christian” institutions represented there. True Christians are not “searching for truth” – they have found the Truth (Jn. 1:41), for the Truth has found them! (Lk. 15:4). The Lord Jesus Christ is the Truth (Jn. 14:6).
Oh yes, it certainly was syncretistic.
But the emissaries of Rome always speak with forked tongues, and no one does it better than the Jesuits. The same Jesuit editor of the Vatican newspaper, quoted above, who claimed that the Papacy was not promoting syncretism, went on to say that “fragments of the one truth” are “spread mysteriously everywhere”. A very good definition of syncretism! He said, “This is what enabled Jesuits in the 17th century, missionaries in India, Japan and China… to find small parts of the truth also in these very ancient religious traditions, which had never known Christ.” Then, regarding the Assisi event, he said, “one understands that the ways of salvation can be many because no one knows God’s designs. The traditional teaching of the Catholic Church continues to be valid, confirmed by Vatican II,” and in the year 2000 by the document Dominus Iesus, a “summary of the affirmations of Vatican II.” Note how, in the very same breath, he said “the ways of salvation can be many” and yet “the traditional teaching of the Catholic Church continues to be valid”, by which he meant the teaching that “outside the Catholic Church there is no salvation.” Truly a serpentine forked tongue at work! No wonder so many Roman Catholics today are confused about what their religion actually teaches. If the “Catholic Church” is the only way of salvation, then how can the ways of salvation be many? This is how John Paul II explained it a few days before the 1986 Assisi event: he claimed that “Christ is united in a certain way with everyone”. Years later, however, this same pope declared that religions are neither complementary nor equivalent, and he maintained the doctrine of the uniqueness of the “Catholic Church”. This is always how Rome behaves: she speaks with a deliberate, fuzzy ambiguity that enables her to sit on the fence, and tilt herself in whichever direction the winds may be blowing at any given moment. The objective? To take eventual control of all religions worldwide.
The theme of the 2011 Assisi event was “Pilgrims of Truth, Pilgrims of Peace.” It was called a “Day of Reflection, Dialogue and Prayer for Peace and Justice in the World”. According to Benedict XVI, the objective of the event was as follows: “Through this gathering we wish to express, with simplicity, that we believers have a special contribution to make towards building a better world, while acknowledging that if our actions are to be effective, we need to grow in dialogue and mutual esteem.” For the biblical Christian, “building a better world” is not his mission on this earth. This world is God’s enemy! It is heading for destruction. But Roman Catholicism is not biblical Christianity.
Romish Cardinal Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, said that 25 years after John Paul II’s initiative, “the world needs peace”. It has always needed peace, and it has never had it, and never will, for the world rejects the Prince of Peace Himself. He said, “After 25 years of collaboration between religions and of common witness it is time to take stock and to re-launch the commitment, given the new challenges. The challenges are the financial and economic crisis, which is lasting longer than foreseen; the crisis of democratic and social institutions; the food and environmental crisis; the biblical migrations; the more subtle forms of colonialism; the continuous scourge of poverty and hunger; the uncontrollable international terrorism; the growing inequalities and religious discrimination.” Yes, these are the things the Vatican is poking its nose into around the world, because it harnesses these leftist “causes” to promote its own objective of eventual world domination. But nowhere in the Bible does it say these are the “challenges” the Church must seek to overcome. The Church’s only purpose in the world is to preach the Gospel to the lost. But what would Turkson know of that? His “Church” is a Whore, not the Virgin Bride of Christ (Rev. 17).
Later he added: “Violence between religions is a scandal that perverts the true identity of religion, veils God’s face, and estranges from the faith. The path of religions to justice and peace, as a primary commitment of conscience that longs for the true and the good, can only be characterized by a common search for truth. The search for truth is a premise for knowing one another better, to overcome all forms of prejudice, but also to overcome syncretism, which clouds identity. For all of us to participate on a common path in search of truth means to recognize one’s own specificity on the basis of what makes us equal – we are all capable of truth – and different at the same time.” He also said that the search for truth is a condition to “defeat fanaticism and fundamentalism”, which seeks to obtain peace by imposing “one’s own convictions on others.”
There is so much in this statement that only a very brief critique can be given here. Again we see the phrase, “the search for truth”. But for true Christians, the search is over: they have found in Jesus Christ all the truth (Matt. 13:45,46). The world’s religions, including Roman Catholicism, “search for truth” because they are of the devil, and have no knowledge of the truth. And note how he spoke of “overcoming syncretism”, even while the Assisi event was a major syncretistic event! The forked tongue again. The smokescreen, deliberately raised. And, significantly, he spoke of the need to defeat “fundamentalism”, equating it with fanaticism; but did he mean by this only such fundamentalism as radical Islamic fundamentalism? Certainly not, for Rome has been combatting evangelical fundamentalism for decades, and equates it with Islamic fundamentalism! And the irony here is that Rome itself has been the most rabidly and fanatically intolerant religion of all, through the centuries of its existence!
The Roman Pope’s Speech
In his speech at the Assisi event Benedict XVI, despite having called the interfaith gathering, took a somewhat different approach from that of his predecessor, John Paul II. Benedict, standing before representatives of almost all the major religions of the earth, was more critical of those very religions than John Paul II would have been. But in order to understand this, his words must be carefully examined. Here is what he said:
“Even if there is no threat of a great war hanging over us at present, nevertheless the world is unfortunately full of discord…. violence as such is potentially ever present and it is a characteristic feature of our world….. not a few have misinterpreted freedom as somehow including freedom for violence.” Clearly he had Islam in mind; but of course he conveniently overlooked the fact that his own diabolical religious system has been one of extreme violence through the centuries.
He went on: “Firstly there is terrorism, for which in place of a great war there are targeted attacks intended to strike the opponent destructively at key points, with no regard for the lives of innocent human beings…. We know that terrorism is often religiously motivated and that the specifically religious character of the attacks is proposed as a justification for the reckless cruelty that considers itself entitled to discard the rules of morality for the sake of the intended ‘good.’ In this case, religion does not serve peace, but is used as justification for violence.” Again, this was a reference to Islamic terrorism; but – Rome’s own history has been one of violence, even in recent times. One just has to think of Rome’s support for the terrorist IRA, so that his words about terrorism often being religiously motivated condemn Roman Catholicism as much as Islam! And the IRA is just one example of Roman Catholic religious terrorism.
“In a way that is more subtle but no less cruel,” he said, “we also see religion as the cause of violence when force is used by the defenders of one religion against others. The religious delegates who were assembled in Assisi in 1986 wanted to say, and we now repeat it emphatically and firmly: this is not the true nature of religion.” Oh, really? It is the true nature of Islam, and of many other religions! And, Benedict, it is the true nature of Romanism, as you yourself well know, but are deliberately trying to hide!
“As a Christian I want to say at this point: yes, it is true, in the course of history, force has also been used in the name of the Christian faith. We acknowledge it with great shame. But it is utterly clear that this was an abuse of the Christian faith, one that evidently contradicts its true nature.” Hmmm…really? That’s not what the popes were saying back then, as one after another they issued their thunderous edicts condoning vicious massacres and condemning millions of people to cruel deaths at the hands of their servants! In the light of Rome’s own history, Benedict’s crocodile tears about “acknowledging with great shame” the use of force in the name of “the Christian faith” (Roman Catholicism) are worthless.
“The enemies of religion… see in religion one of the principal sources of violence in the history of humanity and thus they demand that it disappear. But the denial of God has led to much cruelty and to a degree of violence that knows no bounds…. The horrors of the concentration camps reveal with utter clarity the consequences of God’s absence.” It is certainly true that Communistic atheism has resulted in horrifying violence and the deaths of multiplied millions; but the Nazi concentration camps were not atheistic – this is another deliberate smokescreen – the leading Nazis were Roman Catholics, and were acting with the blessing and full support of the Vatican!
“Finally I would like to assure you that the Catholic Church will not let up in her fight against violence, in her commitment for peace in the world. We are animated by the common desire to be ‘pilgrims of truth, pilgrims of peace.’” But the Roman Catholic institution has used violence throughout its history, and has no true commitment to peace in the world! Not now, and not ever. Learn from history, and do not be deceived by such smooth words and lying speeches!
After Benedict’s speech, a Hindu nun in the crowd outside was interviewed. She said, “I feel very close to Benedict XVI; today’s event is a beautiful gesture on the part of the pope, and message of hope and peace. Among the many wonderful words that I have heard, I’ve been especially struck by the idea that God is love. The word ‘love’ brings us all together.” The words of this poor, benighted woman should make every true Christian weep, and pray. What a tragedy that this Hindu nun had never before heard the biblical truth, “God is love” (1 Jn. 4:8,16). But what a tragedy, too, that she had to hear it first from the pope of Rome, whose God is not the God of the Bible, and whose religion has murdered millions in the name of the false Roman Catholic god, all the while claiming it knows the God of love. This woman heard these wonderful words, “God is love”, but she was given no true understanding of what they mean; for she left with the false notion that because God is love, He accepts people of all religions, and in this “love” all religions can come together. This is not the meaning of those texts which say, “God is love.” How the heart of every true Christian should weep for such gross darkness of the soul; weep for the deception of Popery, of Hinduism, of every false religion; and pray for the Gospel to be sent throughout the earth!
Let us move on to consider the speeches of other religious leaders at the Assisi event. Speeches were delivered by the ecumenical Eastern Orthodox patriarch of Constantinople; the Anglican archbishop of Canterbury; the primate of the Armenian Diocese of France; the secretary-general of the World Council of Churches; the representative of the chief rabbinate of Israel; a representative of the Yoruba religion; a representative of the Hindu religion; the president of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism; the secretary-general of the International Conference of Islamic Schools; and a person representing “non-believers”.
We will analyse parts of the speeches of just some of those who spoke below:
The WCC Secretary-General’s Speech
Olav Fykse Tveit, a Norwegian Lutheran who is the secretary-general of the World Council of Churches (WCC), delivered an address at the event. It is so very typical of the utter drivel that always emanates from the WCC, which is an ecumenical Babel of religious institutions claiming to be “Christian”, but which are in reality so far removed from what true biblical Christianity is that they have no right whatsoever to the name of “Christian churches.” It speaks volumes that this speech (at least as reported) did not even mention the Name of Christ. But even if His Name had been mentioned, it would simply have added to the blasphemy of it, for those who can join such a wicked organisation as the WCC know nothing of Christ, of His true Gospel, or of true, sound doctrine.
Tveit said the following:
“Your Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, Your Eminences, Your Excellencies, Fellow Religious Leaders”. Let us stop right here. This is how this man opened his address! Would any true Christian refer to the Roman Antichrist as “Your Holiness”? Would any true Christian refer to the representatives of the other satanic religions present in such terms? Never! But then again, would any true Christian even attend, let alone address, such a sinful gathering of Satan’s emissaries? Never! Again, 2 Cor. 6:14-18.
He went on: “St. Francis offers us inspiration for how faith in God, open dialogue and genuine encounter can lead to significant contributions to a just peace.” Francis of Assisi was not a true Christian, and thus not a “saint” in the biblical sense of the word. He knew nothing of saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. He was a man blinded by the devil himself.
“In the course of a war being fought which had Jerusalem as its ultimate prize,” said Tveit, “Francis came to share experiences of faith with the Sultan in Egypt. As many crusaders, he came to convert the other. He became changed, converted, himself.” Apart from showing that Francis was very obviously then not a true Christian, these words of Tveit show that he does not believe his version of “Christians” should preach to those of other religions! And this shows how blind he is to the true Gospel of Christ, which does seek the conversion of others.
“Christians are reminded that the cross is not for crusades but a sign of how God’s love embraces everybody, also the other.” No, the cross reveals the love of God for the elect, the sheep, His Church; for those for whom Christ died; those whom God loved from eternity (Jn. 10:11,14,15; Acts 20:28; Eph. 5:25). It is true that the cross is not for crusades, although Tveit’s buddy, the Antichrist of Rome, heads up a false “Church” which enthusiastically used vicious, violent, bloodthirsty crusades in past centuries.
“For the World Council of Churches a clear commitment over the coming years is to work for just peace in Jerusalem and all the peoples living there and around that city…. This city, holy to Jews, Christians and Muslims, is a visible symbol of our longing, our highest and best desires, our love of beauty and our desire to worship God…. Let us as religious leaders pray for justice and peace for Jerusalem and for all who live there…. We are called to participate in the re-establishing of peace for Jerusalem”. Actually, no – true Christians are not called to participate in any such thing. This is an incorrect exposition of Psa. 122:6, which for the New Testament believer has a spiritual application, and enjoins him to pray for the peace of the heavenly, spiritual “Jerusalem”, the true Church of Christ (Heb. 12:22). But besides that, the WCC is very committed to supporting Islam against the Jewish state of Israel. So that what it means by a “just peace” for Jerusalem is a situation in which Israel constantly backs down and cedes more and more to the Muslim terrorists attacking it.
The Jewish Rabbi’s Speech
A Jewish rabbi, David Rosen, had the following to say during his address at Assisi:
“This vision of pilgrimage, of ascent, is central to the prophetic vision of the establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth – the messianic vision of universal peace.” He then went on to quote the prophecy of Isa.2:3,4, and 11:6-9. But in truth, there is no “messianic vision” in the Bible (rightly divided) of “universal peace” between people of different religions and of no religion – rather, there is only peace between true Christians; those from every nation who are converted to Christ, and are added to His true, universal Church. As for Isa. 2:3,4, this is a wonderful prophecy of the true Church (the “mountain” in this prophecy, mystical Zion); and Isa. 11:6-9, too, is fulfilled spiritually, not literally: there is not coming a time on earth when the wolf will literally dwell with the lamb, or the leopard lie down with the kid – but whenever fierce opponents and persecutors of true Christians are converted (like Saul of Tarsus), then this lovely prophecy is spiritually fulfilled. This rabbi, and indeed all religious Jews, are mistaken in their understanding of these prophecies because they reject Jesus of Nazareth as the true Messiah.
He added: “For demonstrating this aspiration [to peace] in such a visible manner already in Assisi twenty-five years ago, we owe a debt of gratitude to the memory of Blessed John Paul, and we must give profound thanks to his successor Pope Benedict XVI for continuing in this path.” How utterly sad that, after all Rome has done by way of persecuting Jews through the centuries, even right up into World War Two when the Vatican’s servant, Adolf Hitler, tried to exterminate them, its whitewashing of its own bloody anti-Jewish history has been so successful that even many rabbis have become convinced that the Papacy has changed and actually likes them now!
The Islamic Scholar’s Speech
Kyai Haji Hasyimmuzadi, the general secretary of the International Conference of Islamic Scholars, addressed the Assisi event. Here is some of what he said:
“…many human problems on this planet in fact originate from people with religions, even though the problems arising from people of religions do not mean they originate from the religion itself.” That problems arise from religious people is certainly true of both his own Islamic religion, and Roman Catholicism, to name just two. But they do arise from the religion itself, when that religion teaches that violence can be used to coerce someone, as both Islam and Romanism have done. The devil created the world’s religions, which is why their followers cause so many of the problems in the world.
He said: “…so as to attain lasting harmony and co-existence among religions, therefore what is not similar [among the religions] should not and must not be forced to be opposing, and what views are not shared should not be imposed.” And yet Islam does impose itself on those who do not share it, insisting that all men should convert to Islam even at the point of a sword if necessary. There’s no escaping this, it is the teaching of the Koran itself, and this Islamic scholar was doubtless banking on the fact that members of other religions are so ignorant of Islam that they do not realise this. The same is true of Romanism.
The deceptive nature of Islam’s teachers was also shown at an inter-religious meeting held in Munich a few weeks before the Assisi event. Here, a Moroccan professor of Muslim dogma and comparative religion, Mohammed Amine Smaili, said that the 1986 Assisi meeting “marked a decisive and memorable about-face in our history” because the world’s religions established a consensus that dialogue is the only way that humanity can understand itself. If this really was so, then why has Islam advanced by violence and force ever since 1986? Looking at the advance of Islam worldwide today, the good professor would have to forgive us if we simply cannot see it using “dialogue” to help humanity “understand” itself. And then, revealing the two-faced, deceptive nature of Islam, he added that the “democratic reform movements” sweeping across North Africa and the Middle East have also reflected the “spirit of Assisi”, as they bring people of different religions together to promote greater freedoms and human rights. In the first place, there is absolutely nothing truly “democratic” about the violent uprisings that have been engulfing the Muslim world, if by “democratic” is meant people using their vote and peaceful means to bring about regime change. If by “democratic” he simply means mob rule and the bringing to power of new tyrants to replace the old ones, then yes, it has been “democratic”. In the second place, considering that the “spirit of Assisi” supposedly is about peace between religions and between religious and non-religious people, then the violent uprisings in the Muslim world cannot reflect a spirit of peace. But then again, considering that the true “spirit” behind the interfaith Babel at Assisi is none other than the prince of darkness himself, leading men astray and leading them to hell, the Islamic uprisings then do reflect the same spirit. For Satan appears as a spirit of “peace” or as a spirit of war; either way, he deceives mankind.
In the third place, the Islamic uprisings have not “brought people of different religions together to promote greater freedoms and human rights”! This is so obviously untrue that one is forced to the conclusion that this Islamic professor is deliberately trying to pull the wool over our eyes. The uprisings have been Muslim uprisings; and during the uprisings as well as in their aftermaths, Muslims have actively and violently persecuted non-Muslims, including Copts and true Christians. Non-Muslims are fleeing these Arab states in huge numbers as they see the writing on the wall. Their lives are in great danger.
In his farewell address to the religious delegates, Benedict XVI said, among other things, that the Assisi “pilgrimage” highlighted a genuine desire to contribute to the good of humanity, and of “how much we have to share with one another.” However, although it is doubtless true that many sincere religious people want to “contribute to the good of humanity” in some way, the plain fact of the matter is that many others have no such interest – including many who were present at this very event. Roman Catholics and Muslims, for example, believe that the only genuine way to “contribute to the good of humanity” is to convert the whole world to their respective religions, by whatever means they possibly can. This has ever been the desire of these two violent and powerful religions. Therefore, all these talks are at the end of the day utterly meaningless. They are merely designed to fool the world into believing that these religions are tolerant, decent religions which have the good of mankind at heart. This is a demonic lie. Religions such as Romanism and Islam have no genuine desire to “share with each other”. They desire to conquer each other! Also, the exclusivity of the true Gospel (Jn. 14:6; Acts 4:12) means that biblical Christians have nothing to share with those of other religions except the true Gospel of Christ! This is why true Christians can never enter into such interfaith “dialogue” as occurred at Assisi. It is simply not the true Church’s mission, and would be sinful in the eyes of the Lord, for all the religions of the earth are satanic. Light has nothing to do with darkness, and this is why true Christians evangelise the world – they go into all the world and seek to preach the Gospel to every creature (Mk. 16:15)! Why evangelise at all, if all religions are equal and their various teachings should be respected? We do not all worship the same God, as interfaith pluralists and syncretists would have us believe! There is in truth only one true God, Jesus said in Jn. 17:3. All who do not worship this one true God are following Satan. All the religions of the world are satanic at their very heart and core.
All these facts reveal that the Roman Catholic institution is not the true Church of Jesus Christ: firstly it is shown by its deception at this very Assisi event, and secondly by the fact that if it really was the true Church, it would not want to “share” with other religions anyway!
Benedict said, “As we go our separate ways, let us draw strength from this experience and, wherever we may be, let us continue refreshed on the journey that leads to truth, the pilgrimage that leads to peace.” But again – the Lord Jesus Christ is the truth! (Jn. 14:6). And therefore those who know Him, who have been irresistibly drawn to Him by sovereign grace, who have believed in Him, who have been saved from their sins by Him, are not on any “journey leading to truth”! This again just reveals that Roman Catholicism is utterly ignorant of the truth, for it is utterly ignorant of Christ. If it knew Him, its leader would not have spoken this way. True Christians are not still searching for “truth”; Roman Catholics, and those of other religions, still are. They have not found the Pearl of Great Price.
The world’s religions are united against the Lord Jesus Christ, His true Church, and His glorious Gospel. They differ in many respects, but on this they are in agreement: that they hate the light, and relentlessly wage war against it, in innumerable ways. To the true, Bible-believing Christian, the message is clear: “Do all things without murmurings and disputings: that ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; holding forth the word of life” (Phil. 2:14-16). Against all such ecumenical and interfaith lies, we must raise our voices, hold forth the only Word of life, and shine as lights in this world of darkness by reflecting the light of the One who is the light of the world (Jn. 8:12; Matt. 5:16)!
Shaun Willcock is a minister of the Gospel. He runs Bible Based Ministries. For other articles (which may be downloaded and printed), as well as details about his books, audio messages, pamphlets, etc., please visit the Bible Based Ministries website; or write to the address below. If you would like to be on Bible Based Ministries’ email list, to receive all future articles, please send your details.
.The Bible Based Ministries Newsletter, November 1986, No.21. Bible Based Ministries.
.L’Osservatore Romano, 27 October 1986.
. “Spirit of Assisi” To Be Revived with Pope, September 21 to 27, 2011. The Southern Cross.
.L’Osservatore Editor Notes Continuity in Assisi Events, October 26, 2011. Zenit.org.
.The Inter-Faith Movement: the New Age Enters the Church, by Herbert J. Pollitt, pg.14. The Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh, UK, 1996.
.See The Two Babylons, by Alexander Hislop. Loizeaux Brothers, Neptune, New Jersey, USA, 1959.
.See The Pagan Festivals of Christmas and Easter, by Shaun Willcock. Bible Based Ministries, 1996. Available from: www.biblebasedministries.co.uk.
.See The Documents of Vatican II.
.The Inter-Faith Movement: the New Age Enters the Church, pg. 74.
.L’Osservatore Editor Notes Continuity in Assisi Events, October 26, 2011. Zenit.org.
.See Rome Still Claims to be the One True Church, by Shaun Willcock. Bible Based Ministries, 2007. Available at www.biblebasedministries.co.uk.
.The Southern Cross, March 12, 2000.
.Vatican Intent on Avoiding Any Hint of Syncretism in Assisi, October 19, 2011. Zenit.org.
.Vatican Intent on Avoiding Any Hint of Syncretism in Assisi, October 19, 2011. Zenit.org.
.Papal Address at Assisi Pilgrimage, October 27, 2011. Zenit.org.
.See Catholic Terror in Ireland, by Avro Manhattan. Chick Publications, Chino, California, 1988.
.See such works as The Vatican Against Europe, by Edmond Paris, the Wycliffe Press, London, 1988; and many others. See the Bible Based Ministries catalogue of recommended books for details: www.biblebasedministries.co.uk.
.Believers of Many Faiths Seek One Truth, October 28, 2011. Zenit.org.
.World Council of Churches Leader at Assisi Event, October 27, 2011. Zenit.org.
.Rabbi Rosen at Assisi Event, October 27, 2011. Zenit.org.
.See, for example, Hitler’s Pope: the Secret History of Pius XII, by John Cornwell, Penguin Books, London, 1999; and many others. See the Bible Based Ministries catalogue of recommended books for details: www.biblebasedministries.co.uk.
.Leader of Islamic Scholars at Assisi Event, October 27, 2011. Zenit.org.
. “Spirit of Assisi” To Be Revived with Pope, September 21 to 27, 2011. The Southern Cross.
.Pope: Assisi Showed Us What We Have to Share, October 28, 2011. Zenit.org.
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