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Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Whore of Babylon, Part I

Edited to add: I'm having a really hard time getting Candy's words to be big enough to be readable. I'm out of naptime now, so I'll try to fix it this evening.

As mentioned previously, Red Neck Woman and Joy have already done a great job on Candy's Whore of Babylon post, not to mention Elena's post from the last time Candy brought up the issue. I'm not going to try and recreate the wheel, but I wanted to give my thoughts on the post.

I recently finished reading the Bible again. Every time through, I'm just shocked when I read Revelation chapter 17. Who/what could that chapter be discussing?

I took the time to look up Revelation 17 in the King James Bible. I admit, I didn't get out Candy's list to see if it was an uncorrupted translation. At any rate, I too was a bit "shocked." Okay, not really. But I keep hearing the same bits referenced over and over, and they are just a small part of the entire chapter.

For example, we keep hearing about these seven hills. But the very first verse says that the whore "sitteth upon many waters." The last time I checked, Rome was pretty land-locked.

The Whore of Babylon sits over a city. That city sits atop 7 hills, and is under a strong religious influence. There is only one city that fits this description, and that is Rome.

I didn't see anything in the chapter about a strong religious influence. There are actually quite a few cities which are built on seven hills. If strong religious influence is a must, then Istanbul is a likely candidate. Located in the Bosphorus Strait, it would actually be sitting on many waters.

Certainly many Christians have been killed from Muslims, but more so from the Roman Catholic Church. For example, Pope Innocent (I think he was Pope Innocent III, but I'm not positive) killed 70,000 Christians in one day, - that is more than all of the Caesars of Rome put together.

That is certainly a paragraph which could use some citations. I find it curious that she begins by saying that the Christians have been killed by Muslims, but the last line says more than Caesars.

I haven't been able to find any historical data on any of the Pope Innocent's killing 70,000 Christians in one day, or any scholarly agreement on how many Christians were killed by Rome. It seems that 90,000 Christians were killed after Jerusalem fell to the Persians in 614. But perhaps not in one day.

During the Inquisition and burnings, Christians were killed because they refused to convert to Roman Catholicism. This is not Christian or Christ like. Christ said that after you've told someone the Gospel message, if they don't accept it, you are to just shake the dust off of your feet and move on. To see an example of historical religious killings, by Roman Catholics killing Christians, watch the movie Elizabeth (the first one is the best).

Christians would know that killing someone if they don't accept your message is un-Biblical, huh?

The followers of John Hus, known as the Hussites, were quite a force in their day.
As Zwingli spread protestantism in Switzerland, protestant forces declared war on the Catholic cantons.
The factions of Luther, Calvin, and Zwingli all killed Anabaptists.
Saintly Queen Elizabeth killed Catholics for not converting to Anglicanism.
Witch trials encompassed all forms of Christianity, in Europe and America. Lutheran Germany had the highest execution rate.

All this at a time when historians are admitting that "The Inquisition was an image assembled from a body of legends and myths which, between the sixteenth and the twentieth centuries, established the perceived character of inquisitorial tribunals and influenced all ensuing efforts to recover their historical reality."

Philip Jenkins, Professor of History and Religious Studies at Pennsylvania State University (non-Catholic), writes in his book, The New Anti-Catholicism: The Last Acceptable Prejudice:

"There never was such a thing as a Church-wide inquisition, a terrifying monolith comparable to the NKVD or the Gestapo. It is more accurate to think of inquisitions that operated extensively in some areas in a highly decentralized way, although they notionally acted under papal authority. Inquisitions were important at certain times and places but never existed in other areas."

"The main problem about speaking of 'the Inquisition' is that it suggests that religious repression of this sort was a Catholic prerogative. In fact, before the Enlightenment, virtually all religious traditions on occasion acted similarly when they had the power to do so..This indictment of religious savagery and intolerance applies to.all the Protestant nations, even relatively liberal ones such as England and the Netherlands..Equally blameworthy would be Muslims, Hindus, and even Buddhists. After all, in the seventeenth century, when Catholic inquisitions were at their height, the Buddhist/Shinto nation of Japan was engaged in a ferocious attempt to stamp out the deviant faith of Christianity through torture and massacre. In just forty years, these Japanese religious persecutions killed far more victims than the Spanish Inquisition would in all the centuries of its existence."



There are ancient Mystery Babylon cults. These cults tend to have the below in common:

1. They worship a mother and child. For example: Isis and Horus.

Catholicism: Worships one God in three divine persons. I guess we don't fit this one.

2. They will mix in other pagan practices, and refine their mystery religion into a melting pot of sorts.

Does Catholicism mix in pagan practices? Perhaps, but I think Candy can defend Catholicism in her own words here:

Moving on to the decorating of the evergreen or other green deciduous trees, we do find in history pagans celebrating winter solstice, long before Christ was born. This tree decorating was also done by other heathen and pagan peoples in the past. Does this mean that a Christian having a Christmas tree is pagan? Not at all.

The pagans had feasts. Does this mean then, that Christians should not eat? The pagans sang and danced unto their false gods. Does this mean then that it was pagan of King David to dance unto the Lord when he was celebrating the returning of the ark of the covenant?


If it's good enough for Christmas, it's good enough for Catholicism.

3. Many teachings of such a cult are esoteric. You'll only be told a little here, and a little there, until you are far enough in the religion to learn more.

Catholicism: Not an esoteric religion. You can read all of our doctrine in the Catholic Catechism.

I guess we've successfully proven that Catholicism does not meet the three standards for Mystery Religion. Glad we got that settled.

Is this why the pope wears a Dagon fish hat?

Is that why Protestants wear fish magnets on their car?

The basilica of Saint Peter's, according to some, stands upon the former site of Cybele's main temple in Rome.

Well, "some" people will believe anything. But the basilica of Saint Peter's is built on the tomb of St. Peter.

I'll handle the actual doctrine part of her article in a second post.


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26 comments:

Joy said...

Great job as usual, Kelly. Fish magnet- ha ha!

faithful catholic said...

"I love the fishes 'cause they're soooo delicious!" Why has this song been running around in my head for the last several days?

Give a man a fish and he eats for a day.
Give a man a fish hat and he teaches all who follow his teachings about God.

Okay, now I'm officially around the bend. Why am I perseverating about the fish thing?

Kelly, that post was good, and funny! Especially the fish line. Thanks!

Perplexity said...

I am going off topic here to ask a question of all of you.

My nephew is doing his first communion at the end of the month.

What kind of gift is appropriate for this? I don't want to spend a fortune and I don't really want to get into anything specifically religious, simply because his parents, grandparents and godparents will cover those bases, I presume.

We are not going to the Mass but we are going to the family gathering afterwards.

Tracy said...

Great job as always Kelly!!

Rachel said...

Perplexity - same thing here. I am giving money so he can get whatever he wants to mark the occasion. He has many a year to be guided and preached to and well.. I just think he needs to mark the day in his own way. :)

Rachel said...

Candy gets old, really old, really fast. I, too, am amazed at those reading her blog are suddenly transformed and "see the light" and especially those who use to be catholic and then picked up the bible and said it wasn't catholic? I'd list a few things.. but uh.. that would be the ENTIRE BIBLE. I do smirk when I see her contradict herself - pagan stuff and then her christmas tree?? Pick and chose to suit her needs of the moment. Her commentors are more than likely fake, her facts are full of holes. It use to make me madd, but now it makes me sad. She's spinning her own web and is getting herself caught up in it. I just pray for her to see the truth. I wonder why she picks on Catholics so much? She truley despises them. Why? When I "spread the word" I certainly don't discount someones religion. Instead, I share what's so awesome about my own. You are only going to put people on the defense when you do it the way she does. Which, in my case, worked for me. I read my bible each night and smile in church when the readings are done... yup.. read that the other night :)

Keep the faith everyone!! Yall do an awesome job is discounting her untruths!

a soldier's wife said...

Hi Kelly,
Off topic questions here :)
On a comment you suggested the 3 volume readers set of the Navarre Bible. I'm trying to find it and called up Aquinas and More and we think we have the right ones, but when you have time, could you make sure I have the ones you suggested before I purchase?
Thanks in advance!
soldier's wife

http://www.aquinasandmore.com

item #
4000 (Gospel and Acts)
20624 (The Letters of Saint Paul)
1077 (Revelation, Hebrews, and Catholic Epistles)

kritterc said...

OK - the whole inquisition topic really interests me. There were actually four inguisitions according to Wikipedia. They actually happened, but details have been greatly exaggerated through the centuries. I did find this paragraph interesting and wanted to share it:

Recent Investigations

In the year 2000, Pope John Paul II called for an "Inquisition Symposium", and opened the Vatican to 30 external historians. What they found discounted many exaggerated facts previously believed. It was learned that more women accused of witchcraft died in the Protestant countries than under the Inquisition. For example, the Inquisition burned 59 women in Spain, 36 in Italy and 4 in Portugal, while in Europe civil justice put to trial close to 100,000 women; 50,000 of them were burned, 25,000 in Germany, during the 16th century by the followers of Martin Luther.[9][10][11]

Kelly said...

perplexity, you aren't obligated to get him a gift, so a nice card would suffice.

I, personally, think that a religious gift is appropriate for a religious occasion. A nice medium reading level Bible with good illustrations, for example. I like the one by Fr. Lovasik, which has an illustration on the left page, and a story on the right.

There are also some good boy-oriented story books, such as The Squire And the Scroll, or Andrew Lang's The Book of Saints and Heroes. I'm a huge reader, though, so I just don't have it in me to recommend a Wii game, or something. :P

a soldier's wife--Those are ones that I have. I think you could probably find them cheaper on Amazon or Half.com, but I don't want to discourage you from buying from a Catholic store, either! As I said, I only have 2 of the 3 currently, because they are so pricey.

Sal said...

Kelly,
I am giggling so inappropriately, but oh, this is funny.
In a sad kind of way...
Hoisted! On her own petard!
the perils of being one's own authority, yet again.

Great job, as usual

Nancy Parode said...

Perplexity, you could also get a Catholic or Christian music CD. My favorite FHC gift, which I still have, was a book of saint stories. My daughter received a really nice saint book for her FHC, written by Amy Welborn.

Dana said...

Hi, I was brought up in the Catholic church, didn't really receive any instruction. I became a Christian in 2001 and received a Protestant foundation.
I have been reading Candy for 4 years and she has helped and blessed me with some things.
Now, she's only pushed me further into researching out Catholicism. She has shown me the 'light' in that many many baptist, protestant preachers are so hateful in their rants about Catholics (I used to be under one such shepard), and that is not Christlike in any stretch of the imagination. If anything, I believe that the thing that gave her special prophecies in translating and interpreting Biblical passages was NOT Christ. As time has gone on, she has become more and more haughty and highminded. It is truly a shame. The reason I state this is that, ONE man's opinion (and man's hearts are deceitful above all things) is not gospel. Historical accounts need to be compared to a multitude of writers whose accounts were written at the same time. Anything written by just 'Jack Chick' is not credible. That is just illogical thinking.
I give her the credit that has pushed me in my pursuit of knowledge in the realm of true Catholicism. Just wanted to share and thank all of you for your time and efforts in bringing information to back up the hows, the wheres and the how comes. Ladies, please continue on in keeping up the good work.
yours in Christ

Perplexity said...

Thanks, Kelly. I know religious gifts are appropriate for religious occasions, but my hesitation comes from a few areas. One, not being religious, I am not really knowledgeable. Two, my nephew has many, many, many people in his life; in short, he is a very spoiled little boy (not in a bad way; he is, actually, quite well behaved) but he "has" everything and anything a child could possibly want. There are going to be a good 50 people at his party, and that is 50 gifts...I also know he already has several bibles (I've seen them on the shelf in his room; his younger brother has several as well).

I guess I wanted to avoid religious gifts because he has most of the things I could think of and will get anything I can't by those that are more aware of what he does and doesn't have (parents, grandparents).

We got him a card and I think we are going to go with a Savings Bond. That is our fall-back gift four our nieces & nephews and we've been using it more and more over the past few years. They may not get any enjoyment from it now, but eventually it will be appreciated.

Kelly said...

dana, thank you so much for your kind words. It is always good to hear that we are making a difference in clearing up what Catholicism is really about.

perplexity, wow! That is one big party! I think in that case a savings bond is the way to go.

faithful catholic said...

Dana,

I'm so glad you are seeking out the truth. Many people who have commented here have had similar experiences. I was also raised Catholic but, I did have pretty good instruction. My mother was our director of religious education and we went to Catholic schools (which were still really Catholic back then.) However, when I began to recognize all the anti-Catholic sentiment out there in the world, I found I had to do even more investigation on my own to see if there might be any truth in what some were saying. It's just in my nature to question when people are presenting such vehement arguments. I'm glad you are checking for yourself. There's a whole bunch of really good books on these topics, several of which are shown on the sidebars here on this site. Check it out. Glad you're reading here. God bless you.

faithful catholic said...

Perplexity,

I agree with those who voted for the savings bond. And, if your nephew has a saint's name, either first or middle, you could see if you could find him a patron saint medal. Maybe boys aren't so excited about those sorts of things anymore but, I know my brothers and my nephews liked to get things like that. You can get them at any Catholic goods store or even order them online, and they're not very expensive.

Blondie said...

One of my son's favorite First Communion gifts was a black leather necklace with a St. John Bosco medal on it. He wore it all the time.

Perplexity said...

I looked to see if there is a Saint for my nephew on the advice of Faithful Catholic.

This is what I found:

St. Daniel, the Stylite, Priest. Feast day is December 11. Daniel was born in Maratha, Syria in 409 and became a monk in nearby Samosata on the Upper Euphrates. He learned of St. Simeon Stylites the Elder, living on a pillar at Antioch and got to see him twice. At the age of forty-two, Daniel decided that he too wanted to become a stylite (from the Greek word "stylos", meaning pillar) and live on a pillar at a spot near Constantinople. Therefore, Emperor Leo I, built a series of pillars with a platform on top for him, and Daniel was ordained there by St. Gennadius. The saint quickly became an attraction for the people. He celebrated the Eucharist on his pillar, preached sermons, dispensed spiritual advice, and cured the sick who were brought up to him. He also gave prudent counsel to Emperors Leo and Zeno and the patriarch of Constantinople. All the while, Daniel lived his particular type of pillar spirituality. He came down from his perch only once in thirty-three years - to turn Emperor Baliscus away from backing the heresy of Monophysitism. Daniel died in 493 and became the best known Stylite after St. Simeon Stylites the Elder. The life of St. Daniel the Stylite is an apt reminder that there are many ways to live the spiritual life. All of us have our own way to be close to God every day. Our task is to find that way and follow it to the very end.


I like the last two sentences of this description so much that I think I have decided to go that route. I like my nephew having a connection to someone who shows that there are many ways to worship and it is up to us to find which way works for us.

Thanks for the idea, Faithful Catholic.

Kelly said...

I find the Stylites some of the most fascinating saints. Can you imagine living on a pillar for decades! What a truly different culture it was then.

Perplexity said...

I'd never heard of the Stylites until I looked up the Saints this afternoon.

Now, I've spent the past hour or so Googling and reading about them. It's an extremely interesting history and kind of intriguing in its own way.

Kelly said...

If you've ever read A Conneticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain, there is a Stylite there.

faithful catholic said...

Perplexity,

You are most welcome for the idea. I have to say though that I've been cruising the internet, looking at some sites that sell saint medals and I am shocked at how much they cost these days! I hope you will be able to find a reasonably priced one. Honestly, I can't remember ever paying more than ten dollars for one and I believe those were sterling silver. The ones I bought for the kids though were usually the pewter ones. That way, if it gets lost accidently, the kids don't feel too bad about losing it. The playgrounds at Catholic schools used to be a veritable treasure trove of saints medals and scapulars. I don't think that's still the case though.

Perplexity said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nancy Parode said...

Dana,

It's wonderful that you've found your way here and that you're open to learning more from reliable sources. I hope you'll comment often!

One of my dear friends, who is United Methodist, told me about her experiences at Baptist VBS, where she was told Catholics are going to Hell. I was so amazed that pastors would tell young children this! (Little did I know how anti-Catholic some people can be...)

Please keep sharing your thoughts; it's so nice to be part of a community that can discuss things civilly and openly.

Kelly said...

Actually Nancy, I went to VBS at a Baptist Church, because the Catholic Church wasn't doing VBS at that time. No one mentioned Catholicism at all.

Baptist churches are very independent, so while they might be more inclined in general to anti-Catholicism, they aren't all that way. Many are downright mainstream, but not without the minimal liturgy you might find at a Methodist or low-Lutheran church.

Nancy Parode said...

Kelly,

Yes, I know that. I worked in a military chapel for two years (as DRE!) and had fascinating discussions with people of all faith backgrounds. (That was my first real experience with apologetics...let's hope I did well!)

I know a Navy chaplain - Southern Baptist - who learned to pray the rosary and carried rosaries in his pocket to give to the Catholic marines he served with in Iraq. There are many wonderful, caring Baptists out there, and I've been privileged to meet some of them. (This same chaplain has learned to ride a skateboard, too...a great way to connect with young sailors and with teens!)

I think that what's helped me learn about other faiths, from mainstream Christianity to Islam and Jehovah's Witness, has been a willingness to listen attentively, share information and answer questions honestly. One of my most interesting jobs was supervising people from diverse faith backgrounds (Islam, Southern Baptist, Jehovah's Witness, no set church) who all had to work together. Throw in Catholic Yours Truly and it was a real melting pot (we had diverse national/ethnic backgrounds as well). I learned so much from all of these people because we agreed to discuss things in a civil way, rather than a critical one.

I guess that's why I like this blog so much - there's a chance to explain and to listen, without fear of being banned or of having your post stuck in "truth" limbo. I am sure anyone could come here, ask an honest question, and receive an equally honest answer.