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Originally posted by moocowman
reply to post by Ranger23
Isn't it amazing how a omniscient omnipotent god, the alleged creator of everything, can completely fail to get a uniform message across.
Originally posted by huckfinn
I don't think that is the case. While the words rapture and tribulation may be new words, I think they were developed as people began to understand the deeper concepts of the Bible.
In 1545, the Catholic Church convened one of its most famous councils in history—the Council of Trent. It continued for three sessions, ending in 1563. One of the main purposes of this Council was for Catholics to plan a counterattack against Protestantism, also known as the Counter-Reformation. Up to this point, Rome's main method of attack had been blatant—burning Bibles and heretics. Yet this warfare only convinced Protestants that Papal Rome was indeed the Beast that would "make war with the saints." Revelation 13:7. Therefore a new tactic was needed—something less obvious. This is where the Jesuits come in.
On August 15, 1534, Ignatius Loyola founded a secret Catholic order called the Society of Jesus, also known as the Jesuits. "Jesuit priests have been known throughout history as the most wicked political arm of the Roman Catholic Church. Edmond Paris, in his scholarly work, The Secret History of the Jesuits, reveals and documents much of this information."3 At the Council of Trent, the Catholic Church gave the Jesuits the specific assignment of destroying Protestantism and bringing people back to the Mother Church. This was to be done not only through the Inquisition and torture, but also through theology.
At the Council of Trent, the Jesuits were commissioned by the Pope to develop a new interpretation of Scripture that would counteract the Protestant application of the Bible's antichrist prophecies to the Roman Catholic Church. Francisco Ribera (1537-1591), a brilliant Jesuit priest and doctor of theology from Spain, took on the challenge. Like Martin Luther, Ribera read the prophecies about the Antichrist, the little horn, the man of sin, and the beast. But he came to different conclusions than Luther did. He decided that the prophecies applied, not to the Roman Catholic Church, but to one diabolical figure at the end of time. This viewpoint quickly became the official Roman Catholic position on the Antichrist.
The Catholic Origins of Futurism and Preterism
Francisco Ribera (1537-1591) was a Jesuit doctor of theology, born in Spain, who began writing a lengthy (500 page) commentary in 1585 on the book of Revelation (Apocalypse) titled In Sacrum Beati Ioannis Apostoli, & Evangelistiae Apocalypsin Commentarij, and published it about the year 1590. He died in 1591 at the age of fifty-four, so he was not able to expand on his work or write any other commentaries on Revelation. In order to remove the Catholic Church from consideration as the antichrist power, Ribera proposed that the first few chapters of the Apocalypse applied to ancient pagan Rome, and the rest he limited to a yet future period of 3 1/2 literal years, immediately prior to the second coming. During that time, the Roman Catholic Church would have fallen away from the pope into apostasy. Then, he proposed, the antichrist, a single individual, would:
Persecute and blaspheme the saints of God.
Rebuild the temple in Jerusalem.
Abolish the Christian religion.
Deny Jesus Christ.
Be received by the Jews.
Pretend to be God.
Kill the two witnesses of God.
Conquer the world.