The part of Hebrews 11 that I want to start in is beginning in verse number 35. The Bible reads in Hebrews 11:35, "Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect."
This morning, the title of my sermon is The Roman Catholic Inquisition. Now, this is something that you don't hear a lot about, unfortunately, because it's not politically correct to talk about. In fact, I remember when I was a high school student at public school in Roseville, California, I remember drawing attention to this in a history class, talking about the fact that the Roman Catholic Church had executed heretics and tortured and burned people at the stake for not being willing to accept the Catholic religion. I was told by the teacher that I shouldn't say things like that and that I was offending Catholics and I had some Catholic girls shrieking at me in anger in the class because I had the gall to stand up and speak about these historical facts that so many don't want to talk about. Usually, in school, this chapter was skipped. Most people know very little about it. I'm going to talk about it this morning and I'm going to give a biblical view on these events.
Now, first of all, what is the Inquisition? Well, the word literally means questioning or investigation or interrogation. For example, if we talked about someone who was inquisitive, that would be a person who asks a lot of questions. The Inquisition had to do with finding heretics and forcing them to conform their beliefs to the idolatrous, Pagan, superstitious Roman Catholic Church. What the Roman Catholic Church calls a heretic could easily be a Bible-believing Christian because of the fact that the Roman Catholic Church is not Christian whatsoever. Now, I go soul-winning every week and I have gone soul-winning every week for about seventeen or eighteen years now. Usually, I start out with this question: Are you a Christian? That's usually the first question that I ask people. About three-quarters of the time, when the person is Catholic, they will literally say, "No, I'm Catholic." Who's ever heard that answer before? "Are you a Christian?" "No, I'm Catholic." Truer words have never been spoken. The Roman Catholic Church is Pagan, Roman religion, superstition, idolatry, and evil and I'm going to go into that a little bit later.
Let me just explain to you what they would do to these so-called heretics which is basically anybody who doesn't believe like them, anybody who won't accept the church. Torture was basically used to get people to confess their heresies and that they were wrong and that the church was right. Those who refused to recant would be burned at the stake. Those who recanted but then they relapsed and had the wrong belief a second time, they would also be burned at the stake. Now, make no mistake, many of these heretics did believe false doctrine. The Roman Catholics love to emphasize heretics like those who denied the deity of Christ or emphasized heresies like the so-called Cathar heresy or Manichean where they believed that the God of the Old Testament is different than the God of the New Testament, that there's more than one God and all this stupid stuff. The Roman Catholics would love to point out that these heretics that were torturing and killing, they had these really weird beliefs and we had to get rid of these people.
In reality though, every single person that's in this church this morning would be considered a heretic according to the Roman Catholic Church. We're all heretics. Why? Because a heretic is anyone who denies the authority of the Pope. I say that the Pope is an anti-Christ. Anybody who denies the authority of the church at Rome is a heretic. We're all heretics. Denying the mediation of saints. Well, the Bible says there's one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, not the saints or Mary or anyone else. Denying that the wafer in the Catholic Mass literally turns into Jesus was a major heresy for which people were burned at the stake. Refusing to make your confession to a faggoty priest and receive absolution from him. That would make you a heretic. Not going to mass and denying the authority of the church fathers and of all their little councils that they had to determine doctrine makes you a heretic. Well, according to that, every single one of us here is a heretic and if not, you're in the wrong place. Every Baptist would be considered a heretic for many different reasons.
Now, if you would, turn to Acts chapter 22. Now, the practice of using torture to interrogate people actually goes back to the Roman Empire before the Roman Catholic Church even existed and that is where the Catholic Church received this practice, from Roman law, from the Pagan Roman Empire. Even the very terms themselves, inquisition and inquisitor, were used before there ever was a Roman Catholic because they were used by the Romans in their legal system for determining guilt and innocence. In Acts chapter 22, we have the apostle Paul preaching to the Jews and they get angry when he talks about the gospel going to the Gentiles because they had this weird idea that they were so much better than the Gentiles and that the Gentiles were not worthy of hearing the gospel.
Now, it says in verse 21, "And he said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles. And they gave him audience unto this word, and then lifted up their voices, and said, Away with such a fellow from the earth: for it is not fit that he should live. And as they cried out, and cast off their clothes, and threw dust into the air. The chief captain commanded him to be brought into the castle, and bade that he should be examined by scourging; that he might know wherefore they cried so against him." Notice he is going to be beaten in order to figure out what he did wrong. They don't even know what he did wrong. They're not even accusing him of anything specific but they're thinking, "Well, people are mad at you so there must be a reason. Tell us what you did." They're going to scourge him as a way to examine him and determine guilt or innocence.
Look what it says in verse 25, "And as they bound him with thongs, Paul said unto the centurion that stood by, Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemned? When the centurion heard that, he went and told the chief captain, saying, Take heed what thou doest: for this man is a Roman. Then the chief captain came, and said unto him, Tell me, art thou a Roman? He said, Yea. And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom." Basically saying, "How is it that you're a Roman? I mean, it cost me a lot of money to get that Roman citizenship." And Paul answers that he was free born.
Look if you would at verse 29, "Then straightway they departed from him which should have examined him: and the chief captain also was afraid, after he knew that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him." The bottom line is that the vast majority of people in the Roman Empire were not citizens of the city of Rome. Citizens of the city of Rome had a special status, special rights and privileges. The vast majority of people in their empire did not fall under that category which is why they don't just assume that your everyday Joe or somebody like the apostle Paul is going to be a Roman citizen. They're very surprised to find out that he was.
Notice this practice of torturing someone just in order to question them and get them to confess to something when you don't even know what it is that you're supposed to confess to. That's going to come up later as we talk about the Inquisition.
Here's where this comes from. If we go back to the Roman Empire, we see the Inquisition, the inquisitor, the practice of torturing people. I showed you a biblical example where they almost did this to Paul. History books are replete with evidence of the fact that this was a Roman practice in the ancient world.
Now, this is the philosophy that the Roman Empire had. They worshiped a lot of Pagan gods and goddesses and they strongly believed that the success of their empire depended on keeping these gods happy. The emperor would enforce worshiping Pagan gods because they said we have to keep the gods happy in order to keep succeeding and taking over more territory. We see that concept in the Old Testament too where these Pagan nations are trying to please their god in order to gain a military victory.
Now, they were okay with you worshiping other gods too. You could pretty much worship whatever gods you wanted in the Roman Empire just so long as you also worshiped their gods. If you didn't worship their gods, it was considered treason because the state and its success depends on keeping the gods happy. If you're refusing to keep the gods happy or if you're screwing up our religion, well, then you're bringing down the wrath of the gods on our whole nation and you're a traitor. Therefore, the punishment is death. What happened was Roman emperors in the early centuries after Christ started forcing Christians to make sacrifices unto their false gods. When the Christians would refuse to make sacrifice unto their false gods, they would be put to death as a traitor. That goes back to the Roman Empire before the Roman Catholic Church.
Then in 313 AD, Constantine, the Roman emperor, converts to Christianity and makes Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. When he does, he does it for political reasons. His goal is to unite the whole empire under himself because it had been divided under a few different Caesars that ruled in different areas. He wanted the whole thing. He used Christianity and he used that cause as a way to rally people and unite the empire and to mandate Christianity upon his subjects. I use the term Christianity very loosely because of the fact that even in the time of the apostles, there were all kinds of false doctrines and heresies and weird beliefs. Just like today, not everyone who says they're Christian is really Christian. It has been like that since the very beginning.
People get this weird idea that the early church, for the first few hundred years, they just had this real pure religion and nowadays, we have all these crazy beliefs. No, the crazy beliefs started from day one. I proved that in my recent sermon that was called Vain Tradition. I don't remember what the sermon was called. Something about God's word versus vain traditions. I went through and showed all the evidence that even at the very beginning, even in the days while the apostles were still alive, they were constantly being thrown out of churches and the truth was being rejected and all kinds of false Christianity had already sprung up.
Well, Constantine, when he turns the empire Christian, his agenda was let's get everybody to agree. I don't want any fighting. I want to use Christianity as a united front to fulfill my political ambition. I want to have a peaceful realm that's all under my control. I don't want different kinds of Christians bickering over doctrine and fighting with each other. He held these councils where he forced everyone to agree. Now, he didn't tell them what to believe. He didn't really care. He would sort of preside over these councils, call these councils, invite all these church leaders and church whoever and they would get together and they would argue the doctrine and they would come up with some kind of a consensus and say, "Well, here's what we all believe." From then on, everybody has to believe that. Once they agreed on that at this council or that council, anything else becomes heresy and it becomes illegal.
Now, real Christians don't compromise doctrine. Real Bible-believing Christians don't get together with the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Catholics and the Presbyterians and the Methodists and the United Church of Christ and get together and say, "Hey, let's all kind of come to a compromise. Let's all come to agreement." What agreement hath the temple of God with idols? None. What concord hath Christ with Belial? What part hath he that believe with an infidel? "Come out from among them. Be separate," saith the Lord. This idea of let's unite everyone. Let's force people to be a Christian and then let's force everybody to agree on one doctrine. Look when you get a bunch of heretics together and a bunch of false teachers together to agree, here's what you end up with: the least common denominator. Broad is the way that leads to destruction and many there be which go in thereat, because straight is the gate and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life and few there be that find it.
These people that are getting together and agreeing, many of them are false teachers who believe in all kinds of false doctrine. One of the biggest false doctrines that you'll find is this idea that the church at Rome was somehow special. You got the church at Alexandria, the church at Antioch, the church here, the church there, but the church of Rome somehow was special the bishop of the church of Rome, he's special. Eventually, he becomes the Pope. Then, that pope takes on the title Pontifex Maximus which is exactly what Caesar was called, Pontifex Maximus. That heresy goes back all the way to the very beginning of these councils where they're declaring the bishop of Rome is special. Where's that in the Bible? Nowhere, of course.
Now, here's the problem with this. Not only did you already have all this garbage and false doctrine even from the very beginnings of Christianity, not only does marrying the church and the state bring in the worst kind of people, because we all know that politicians are the worst people, pretty much the scum of the earth, morally, because wicked people gravitate to these positions of power and then power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. These church leaders that are getting together and want to rub elbows with Caesar are obviously not the right kind of men of God and wicked people. They're all getting together and deciding what the doctrine is. Not only that though, but by making the whole empire Christian and saying, "Hey, we're all going to be Christian now," here's what you're doing. You're bringing in a bunch of Pagans into the church.
Now, let me just illustrate it to you this way. I got to hurry because I have so much to cover here. Let's say that Tempe passed a law that said you have to be a Baptist. You have to go to a Baptist church. Let's say everybody in my subdivision over here, which a couple thousand people probably live in my subdivision right down the street where I live. Let's say everybody in my subdivision was just assigned, well you guys are going to go to Faithful Word Baptist Church. That's your church now. By law, the official religion is Baptist and you got to go to the Baptist church. You know what that would do? That would just bring in a bunch of unbelievers, a bunch of weird doctrine, a bunch of wickedness into our church. Obviously, those people are just going to corrupt the church and make it worse and worse over time even if it starts out where it's the same and Pastor Anderson's preaching to us and it's the same doctrine and these people just kind of you know. Over time, they're going to take over. It's just going to get more Pagan. It's just going to get more wicked. You're bringing in all these weirdos.
Now, let's go to the Bible. Go to Romans chapter number 16. Obviously, we know that the Roman Catholic Church is a false religion, Pagan, idolatrous, murderous, the filthy whore of Babylon. We get that. Let's just look at it from their perspective for a minute. They're saying, "Well, we have to get rid of heretics. We can't just let these heretics just teach and preach false doctrine or we can't just allow people to believe false doctrine." Let me show you how the Bible says we should handle heretics. People that actually do believe false doctrines like let's say they deny the deity of Christ or they teach whatever the false doctrine. Look what the Bible says to do with heretics. Romans 16 verse 17, "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple."
Now, here we have exactly what the Roman Catholic Church is so afraid of. These false teachers and heretics are going to deceive the simple, looking at it from their perspective even though we know the biggest deception is being in the church. What does the Bible say to do about people like that? To just mark them and avoid them. Does it say arrest them, torture them, persecute them, murder them? No, it just says to avoid them. What are we supposed to do with heretics? Mark them, point them out, and avoid them.
Go to 2 Thessalonians chapter 3. We're looking at what the Bible actually says about how to deal with real heretics. 2 Thessalonians chapter number 3 says this in verse 6, "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us." Jump down to verse 14, "And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother." The Bible's very consistent, isn't it? Flip over to Titus chapter 3. What do you do with the guy who's causing divisions and offenses and leading simple people down a path of false doctrine? What do you do to heretics and false prophets? What do you do to people who don't obey the epistles that Paul wrote? What do you do with heretics? You avoid them. You have no company with them. You stay away from them. You preach against them. Do you force them to get on your page? Do you arrest them? Do you murder them? No.
Titus chapter 3 verse 10, "A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition reject; Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned of himself." Flip back a couple pages to 2 Timothy chapter 2. The Bible says in verse 24, "And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient. In meekness instructing those that oppose." It doesn't say destructing. It says, "Instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth." Hey, maybe these people will get it right. Maybe these people, if we instruct them and preach to them and teach them will get their doctrine right. In no case does the Bible ever teach that heretics are supposed to be punished, tortured, flogged, burned, murdered. Nowhere does the Bible teach that. You say, "Where are they getting this from?" Well, as I showed you, they are getting it from the Roman Empire who murdered Christians before there ever was a Catholic. They are following in those same footsteps because they're the Roman Catholic Church and there's a big emphasis on the Roman.
Now, if you would go to Luke chapter 14. Roman, pretty obvious what that signifies. Catholic means universal, global. See, they want everybody to be apart of their church. Everybody has to be ruled over by the church at Rome. That's what they're teaching with that universal whereas the Bible teaches local churches, church at Ephesus, church at Smyrna. All these separate churches, when somebody is teaching heresy, all they do is they just kick the person out of that church and just stay away from that person. That guy's a bad guy. They don't feel the need to force them. Here's the problem. When you make everybody be "Christian", well then how do you throw someone out of the church when they're being forced to be apart of the church? Then it's like we can't do that. Okay. Let's just torture this person and get them to admit that what they belief is false. If that doesn't work, we're just going to have to kill them.
Where do Catholics go to justify this from the Bible? Let me say this. Even to this day, the Roman Catholics still justify both the Inquisition and all of the murder of heretics that they've done throughout their history which goes all the way back to the very beginnings in the 4th Century AD, all the way up until the early 1800s when the Inquisition was done away with in the early 1800s. They justify it to this day. There are all kinds of books out there, the lies of the Inquisition and it turns out it was actually good. Catholics today will say the Inquisition was a good thing. Don't tell me that they've totally repented. No, they haven't. They still believe that what they did was right, to burn heretics. In fact, I picked up several books this week and read all their justifications of why it was good and they said, "Well, the thing that stood out about the Inquisition was just how lenient it was." Yeah. I'm going to go into that in tonight's sermon. By the way, it's a two-parter. This morning is just the introduction. Tonight is where we're going to get into the real meat of it.
This is their bizarre scriptural justification for torturing and murdering heretics. It comes from a guy named Augustine who they call Saint Augustine. Who's ever heard of this guy? He's one of their main Catholic philosopher, their main theologians, the guy that they look to as a great hero. Augustine gave them this wonderful reason for torturing and killing people who would not be Catholic. It goes back to Augustine. They used this parable from Luke 14. This parable was used for over 1000 years to justify it and even today they're still using this parable to justify it.
Let's read the parable together. Verse 15, "And when one of them that sat at meat with him," Jesus, that is, "heard those things, he said unto him, Blessed is he that shall eat bread in the kingdom of God." Now, the problem is most people interpret this parable and completely ignore verse 15 which is the context of the parable. A guy is eating with Jesus and he says to Jesus, "Hey, Jesus, blessed is he that shall eat bread in the kingdom of God. Then, said ye unto him." Then, Jesus responds to that guy singularly, particularly with a parable. It has to be understood in the context of verse 15.
Verse 16 says this, "Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many: And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper."
Now, let me give you the interpretation of this parable. By the way, there's another parable like it. If you want to keep your finger in Luke 14 and you want to flip over to Matthew, you'll see the same parable once again. This isn't in my notes to do this but I do want to mention it. Over in Matthew 22, there's a very similar parable. It's not exactly the the same but it's very similar where it says in verse 2, "The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son. And sent forth his servants to call them." It's just like the parable in Luke 14 where they make excuses and they don't come.
What does the lord do as a result of them not coming? It says in verse 7, "But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city." The reason it says murderers is because in this parable, it says that the servants who were sent to gather them to the wedding, to gather them to the feast, some of them were slain and killed. He destroys the murderers, burns their city, and invites others to the feast in the highways and hedges.
Now, the answer to this parable is pretty obvious what it represents. What is he saying? He's basically talking about the fact that Jesus Christ first came to the Jews. They were the ones that were invited to the kingdom of heaven. They were the ones who were invited to the great marriage supper of the lamb and they rejected him. The Bible says he came unto his own and his own received him not. Jesus talked about how the Jews had killed the prophets and that last of all, they killed the Lord's own son. Because of that, he would burn down their city and slay them. Well, what happened in 70 AD? The Romans came in and burned down their city. They rejected Christ and the punishment was their city was burned, destroyed, the vineyard was let out to other husband. Lots of parables about this.
Here's the thing. Everybody pretty much agrees that that what this parable is about. Augustine would say amen to that. Everybody would agree with that. That's just common sense of just reading the Bible. It's first offered unto certain people who rejected it. That's the Jews. Then, after that, look down where you are in Luke 14. After the first people are invited and rejected, the servant came and showed his lord these things. "Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind." Then, Augustine says to that, that's the Gentiles now. Okay. The Jews rejected it, well we're going to go out and invite somebody else now. That's the Gentiles.
In Augustine's warped mind, there's a third group of people here besides the Jews and the Gentiles. See, the Jews are the ones who are initially invited and they reject it. Everybody agrees. The poor, the maimed, the blind, the halt. Yeah, okay. Now it's going out to different people. That's the Gentiles. Everybody agrees. He says there's a third different group here, the people on the highways and hedges. These are the heretics. The heretics are the third group, the people that are in the highways and hedges. They must be compelled to come in.
According to Augustine, anybody who is a heretic, meaning that you're a "Christian", but you don't believe exactly like the Roman Catholic Church, translation: everybody in the room, you must be forced to be brought into the church. You must be compelled to come in. This is their one scriptural justification for that. Can you believe that? I mean, talk about a stretch. Talk about a bizarre interpretation to say the poor, the maimed, and the blind is the Gentiles and everybody else in the story is just a heretic and they all need to be compelled to come in.
First of all, they don't even understand the word compelled. That's not even what compelled means. Get the story here. It's about being invited to dinner. Just think about this. It's a dinner. It's a feast. It's a great reception where fine dining is going to take place. It's kind of surprising that the people don't want to come. That's why the master's so mad. He went through all this trouble, nobody wants to come, he's angry, his servants are mistreated, et cetera. What does he do? He has all this food. He has all this preparation and he wants someone to enjoy it so what he does is he says, "Let's go invite the poor, the maimed, the blind." Why? Because they're the most likely to want to come. I mean, if you're giving out a free fancy meal and you're inviting homeless people, derelicts, the handicapped, they're going to be thrilled because they didn't normally get to enjoy feasts of that nature. They go out and they invite the poor, the maimed, the blind, and the halt. Through inviting all those people, there's still room for more. The house is not filled. They have more room. Then, it's expanded to saying we'll just invite everybody now. Now just go into the highways and hedges, meaning just walk up and down the street and just find anyone you can.
When it says compel them to come in, it's not saying like put a gun to their head, "You're going to dinner, buddy." No, compulsion or being compelled, if you just break down the word. First of all, you could look up every time compel is used in the Bible and you'll see that people were compelled to do various things and it's obvious what it means. Think about just the root word of compel. That root pel is used in a lot of English words. It comes from the Latin pellere which means to drive or to push. Think about this word propel. Pro means forward. Propel means to push forward. Propulsion is pushing something forward. This would be like a propulsion engine or so forth. Everybody understand the word propel? A propeller pushes things forward. Movement. How about this word? Repel. Re means back. Repel, to drive back, to push back, to drive away, to push away. That's repulsion. Compel comes from the same type of word, pushing, driving. When it says compel them to come in, what's he saying? Be pushy. Push people. Go to those people and say to them, "Look, you need to come to this." Not saying use force, put a gun to their head, beat them up if they won't come. I mean, there's no indication of that. That's ridiculous and stupid of an interpretation. It doesn't fit the parable. It doesn't fit reality. It's ridiculous.
By the way, this is a great thing to show people and I've used this verse often when people try to say, "Hey, you shouldn't be pushy when you're soul-winning or you should be really just let them come to you. Don't do confrontational soul-winning." Now, of course I believe that we should not be rude. We should be gentle and kind, but we shouldn't just be laid back like, "Well, you know it's there if you want it." We should be preaching to people, "Now is the accepted time. Now is the day of salvation." Remember, the house is not church. Did you forget about verse 15? "And when one of them that sat at meat with him heard these things, he said unto him, Blessed is he that shall eat bread in the kingdom of God." That is the feast that these people are being invited to. It's a great feast in heaven. He's not saying compel them to come into church. He's saying compel them to get saved. Being saved is what we're talking about.
When it says here, "Compel them to come in," basically tell them, "Hey, you need to be there. It's not optional. God commandeth all men everywhere to repent." This is his commandment that we believe on the son Jesus Christ and love one another as he gave his commandment. We can't force people to believe that. You can't force people to be saved. If they say, "Look, I don't want to be there," then fine, you're not going to be there.
If you actually get into the parable a little bit, think about this. Let's say you went out and invited someone, some random person on the street and said, "Hey, see that hotel over there? There's a great wedding reception going on. You're invited to dine with us tonight on filet mignon and all the fixings and it's right over there. It's the wedding of John and Crystal Buck, let's say. It's right down here." Here's the thing about that. People probably would feel like they're not really sure if they're really invited or they're not really sure if they're imposing. They might feel a little awkward just showing up at a wedding that they weren't initially invited to. The compel them to come in is basically saying, "Look, we want you there," as opposed to just, "You're invited." I mean, the blind, the maimed, and the halt, when they're told they're invited, they're just like, "Cool. Let's go." It's a great opportunity for them. Your average person might feel a little bit unsure. Look, a lot of people feel that way about salvation. "Well, I don't know. I've done a lot of bad things." They need to be told, "No, you really are invited. God wants you there." Compel them to be saved. This has been perverted.
Now, there aren't three groups of people here. Good night. What kind of ridiculous, Jews, Gentiles, and heretics. Why would your average Joe in this parable, just because he's able-bodied represent a heretic? Doesn't even make any sense. What's really going on here is that God's telling us that when we go out and win people to Christ, we should first go to the literal poor, blind, maimed, and halt. We should give them the gospel first and then give the gospel to everyone else. By the way, that is what we practice at this church. We practice a soul-winning that goes first to the poor, second to everyone else. Look, God wants us to preach the gospel to every creature. We all agree on that. I believe that we should first go to the people that are the most receptive, just like this story shows. First go to the people that are most likely to show up to the dinner. Then, once you've exhausted that, then go to everyone else. That's what I believe.
You see, in our soul-winning, we have knocked all of the poor areas of around our church literally five or six times each. We're to the point now where it's getting to the point where we'll go soul-winning near the church in a good soul-winning area, more of a working class or poor area, and I'm knocking doors and I'm recognizing people. I've knocked this person's door three times personally, let alone what the rest of the church has done.
I remember the town of Guadalupe right near here. It was a really fertile soul-winning ground. It's not exactly a ritzy area. We would go down to that Guadalupe and we would knock every door once a year and we're seeing a whole bunch of people saved. Here's the thing. After we knocked every door for the fifth or sixth time and started seeing all the same people, recognizing people, you'd get a lot of people who are already saved because we already won them to the Lord. You'd get people who weren't interested then and they're still not interested. It got to the point where in the fifth, sixth time through, less and less people were getting saved. The first time was the most fertile. There was a law of diminishing returns that kicked in.
Sometimes people will complain, like for example, on Wednesdays. We can't really go that far soul-winning on Wednesdays. We have to stay fairly close to the church. They'll complain like, "Oh, man. We're going to this middle class neighborhood. This is going to be rough." Every single time we go to the middle class neighborhood, we get at least one person saved, praise God. "Oh, man. Pastor Anderson's taking us to the ..." Yeah, that's because you weren't here when I went to that poor area six times. You get to a point where people, sometimes they take this a little too far where all they want to do is only witness to poor people. He didn't say go back and witness to the poor people the seventh time. He does want the gospel to go to everybody.
Here's what I believe in as a soul-winning method for our church. We go to the poor first. We go to the poor repeatedly but that we go everywhere. Even the richest neighborhood, the door should be knocked one time. At least give them that one. I'm not saying we're going to go back and back and back but you got to go one time, go through the middle class, go through the rich, go through the upper middle class, lower middle class. My goal, as pastor of this church, is to see every door in Phoenix knocked, not just the ghetto for the eighth time. This is coming from somebody who has heavily emphasized the poor areas over the last ten years. Why? Because the fact that that's what the Bible, I believe, teaches, not just here, but in other places.
That's what this is talking about. When the Bible says, "Hey, go get the poor, the maimed, the blind then just go out and get everybody," that's just a model for how to win people to Christ. None of this has to do with torturing anyone, burning anyone a slow, painful death. None of that is in this passage. Augustine is a liar and a false teacher justifying the deeds of his wicked, Pagan, idolatrous Roman Catholic Church. That's where he came up with this.
The Bible says, "As a thorn that goeth up into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouth of fools." See, parables are easily twisted because they're stories that can be interpreted in more than one way. The Bible contains many clear statements and then it contains parables. Well, guess what we should base our doctrine on, clear statements, then we should use the statements to determine the parable. What were the clear statements on how to deal with a heretic? Avoid them. Reject them. Have no company with them. Instruct them. Try to teach them the truth. Hopefully, they'll repent. Then, they just ignore all those clear statements, go to a parable and say, "Well, I think those people out in the highways and hedges are the heretics," which means anybody who's not a Catholic. If you're Christian but not Catholic, you're that heretic that needs to be compelled, not to come into heaven, compelled to come into the church and put your money in our offering plate and obey us. That's what it's all about.
Let me show you one more scripture that they use to specifically justify why they burned people at the stake. Go to John chapter 15. Again, a vague parable that they can twist according to their wicked mind. You know, approaching the Bible with a wicked mind, "How can I justify torturing people to death because they won't join my church?" They take that wicked mind and search the Bible, page after page, ignoring everything about being peaceful and merciful and loving and everything the Bible teaches about the local church. It's all, to them, just about power, money, and control. Then, they search with that wicked heart, "Aha! I found it. Compel them to come in. Get out the rack. Get out the torture implements. Kindle the faggots on the fire and let's burn someone at the stake." I'm using the real meaning of faggot there, just so you know. Look it up in the dictionary. Sometimes I use it the other way too.
Anyway, John chapter 15 verse 5 says this, this is Jesus speaking, "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." You know, that's a beautiful passage, isn't it? "If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned." Well, there it is right there. If you don't abide in mother church, then you're not abiding in Christ. If you're not abiding in Christ, we're going to gather you and burn you. Again, not a clear statement, just a twisting of a parable. What does the Bible teach? Go to Revelation 22.
Revelation chapter 22 and look what the Bible teaches about this as if we hadn't seen already enough scripture about how to deal with heretics. Revelation chapter 22 says this in verse 11, "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still." Does that sound like God needs us to go force people to believe in Christ, force people to obey us, doctrinally? Not at all.
Now, look at verse 17. Verse 16 says, "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will," whosoever wants to, he's saying, "let him take the water of life freely." You see, we are to make our own decisions and everyone should be allowed to make their own decision, whether or not to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and beyond that, whether or not they want to attend church.
You see, I don't want people to attend church who don't want to be here. If you don't want to be here, then by all means, don't come. If you don't want to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, you know, I will do everything to persuade you to become a Christian. I'll get on my knees and beg you to be saved, but I'm not going to force you to be saved because I can't force you to be saved. I'm not even going to get on my knees and beg you to come to church. I'll get on my knees and beg you to be saved. Men of corrupt minds reprobate concerning the faith, they approach the Bible and pull out these weird, sick, twisted interpretation of parables in order to promote the agenda of their godless, wicked church.
Now, in tonight's sermon, this morning's sermon, I'm basically focused upon the rational behind it. How did they get to this point? How could the Roman Catholic Church get from a New Testament that sits there and gives you exact details of how to deal with problems in the church, even how to deal with people trespassing against you and throwing them out of the church, throwing out this person, how to deal with heretics? How do you get from that to the Inquisition? We saw their twisting of scripture and their wicked justification for it.
In tonight's sermon, I'm going to get into basically the detail and the nitty-gritty of actually what they did during the Inquisition. Now, let me say this. I'm not going to get overly graphic with it. In fact, I'm not going to be graphic at all just for the sake of children. I don't want to sit there and go into all the gruesome, gory details. Let me tell you something. It's disgusting. I'm going to keep it G-rated for the children tonight but I'm going to go into the detail of all the processes and everything that they did tonight in the Inquisition. I'm telling you, it is the most hair-raising, evil, Satanic, just disgusting actions that people have committed in the history of mankind, the barbarity, the cruelty, the sadistic wickedness of the Roman Catholic Church is just beyond comprehension. Yet, people today think this is a godly religion.
Even Baptists will sometimes say, "Oh, well, you know. There are a lot of Catholics that are Christian. You know, they're still Christian. They're just off on a few things," or blah, blah, blah. I've been in a Baptist church where the Sunday school teacher literally said that the church was really corrupt around the time of the Reformation to the point where many of the popes weren't even saved. My mom, she didn't want to like speak up or anything. She's not the type that is constantly piping up or something. She's keeping silent in the church and everything. She felt compelled to stand up and say, "Are you saying that there ever was a pope that was saved?" The teacher said, "Well, yeah. Of course." He said, "I think the pope we have right now." We have. He said, "I think the pope we have right now is saved," referring to John Paul II who's roasting in hell right now. John Paul is in hell. Oh, how dare you say that? He's right there with Mother Theresa.
You say, "Well, I'm offended. I'm leaving." Well, then go back to the mother whore Catholic church that's drunken with the blood of the saints and drunken with the martyrs of Jesus that has murdered and killed and tortured true believers and heretics and Jews and everybody else. Yeah, all the blood that's shed on the earth of all kinds of people, but including biblical Christians. You have the gal to get offended when I tell you that the leader of this cult is in hell today. He's burning. All those who were burned at the stake, they may have only suffered for a few minutes or a few hours but John Paul will roast in hell for all eternity with every last Catholic pope before him, all of them, every bishop of that damnable, wicked church of Rome is in hell, in the lowest hell, and will be for all eternity.
We need some preaching against the Roman Catholic Church today. You know, it's wicked. They're murderous, hands dripping with blood, dark places filled with pedophilia and sick filth of homosexuality. These monasteries are like a queer bathhouse. Somebody needs to point out this horrible dragging of the name of our savior in the mud for the last 2000 years. Making excuses for it, acting like it's not that bad. It's wicked. It's nothing to do with Christianity. It's a Pagan, hocus pocus, chanting, work your way to heaven, build us a tower that we may reach unto heaven religion. I have nothing to do with anything of that harlot, the Roman Catholic Church. Filthier than any literal whore who has ever walked down the streets of a downtown area. Decked in more jewelry and ornaments than the most gaudy woman of the night is that wicked Roman Catholic Church.
Look, you say, "Well, you hate Catholics." No, I don't but I hate the Pope and I hate the Catholic Church. May they all rot in hell who have created this wicked religion. The Catholics, I don't hate. I love the Catholics which is why I'm telling them the truth about this Satanic minister who's trying to lead them to hell with this Pagan hocus pocus and superstition. You see, if you love Catholics, you'll tell them the truth that there's no salvation inside the Catholic Church. Catholics love to tell you there's no salvation outside of the Catholic Church. No, there is no salvation inside the Catholic Church. None. If you want to go to heaven, you must reject the Roman Catholic Church. If you believe in the Roman Catholic Church, you will split hell wide open. That rosary, chanting, and hail Mary is going to send you to hell. There is no mediator between God and man but the man Christ Jesus.
That little wafer that he holds up, you know what people used to do in England during the Reformation? There were people who would get so angry at the Catholic Church and get so mad, there were numerous stories of where somebody, when the Pope was holding up that piece of bread, would just grab it out of his hand and throw it on the ground and stomp on it and say, "You're an idolater! That's not Jesus! It's a piece of bread!" Of course, he would be promptly have his tongue removed, hand cut off, burned at the stake, and numerous other horrors happen to them because he had the guts to state the obvious, that your stupid cracker isn't Jesus and that Jesus Christ does not need you to go through a bunch of idols and goddesses and gods and Pagan so-called saints to get you to heaven or to talk to Jesus. The Bible says that we may boldly come unto the throne of grace and obtain mercy to find help in time of need.
Why does this need to be preached today? I remember when I first started preaching, when I was about nineteen to twenty years old and I was newly married and I had a nursing home ministry and I got up and preached this sermon against Catholicism and my ministry leader at my church took me aside and said, "Listen, you can't preach that here." I wasn't even preaching like I'm preaching this morning. This is my turf. You know what I mean? I'm the bishop here, buddy, and I'm going to preach what God lays on my heart. Here's the thing. I'm on his turf. He's ministry leader and he said, "Hey, you can't preach against the Roman Catholic Church by name because there's Catholics here." I wasn't even saying anything radical. I just said, "Hey, they're teaching false doctrine. They're teaching you to work your way to heaven. You got to believe on Jesus to be saved. It's all by faith. It's not through works. It's not through sacraments and Pagan rituals." He took me aside and said, "You can't do that." He said, "Just preach the truth but don't preach against that which is false." This is in a King James soul-winning Independent Fundamental Baptist church. Don't preach against what's false, just preach what's true. Just preach that we're saved by faith alone but don't say that the Catholics teach that it's not. I just said, "Oh, okay. All right."
I come back the next week with my sermon. I had made a little visit to the Catholic bookstore in between. I get up and I write a sermon. We only preach for fifteen minutes in the nursing home so the ministry leader's there. I get up and preach for fifteen minutes and I did exactly what he said. I preached, "Hey, it's by faith. We don't need any mediator." I went through every Catholic doctrine without mentioning the Catholic Church. I just said, "Hey, we don't need a mediator. We don't need to pray to anyone but Jesus." He's just sitting there smiling and, "Oh, it's so good. You're doing it right."
Then, I get to the very last minute and I said, "Let me tell you something about the Roman Catholic Church." I looked right at this old man that told me no, the ministry leader. He wasn't the pastor of the church or anything though. He's just the guy who ran this nursing home ministry. "Let me tell you something about the Roman Catholic Church," and then I went on a rant about it. I pulled a picture out. I said, "This sissy, this isn't Jesus. This long-haired sissy is a product of somebody's imagination." I tore it up and threw it on the ground. I went and sat down. My wife was there. This was a long time ago.
Then, afterward, he came up to me and said, "Good sermon." "Thank you." That's what happened. I'm just telling the story as it happened. That's how it happened. My wife was there. My sister might have been there. I don't remember. That's how it happened. Why? Sometimes you just have to have the guts to just stand up and tell people no because I'm going to preach the truth. This thing of we don't want to offend Catholics, I do. Maybe I'll offend them to the point where they realize that that cracker's going to damn them to hell. They're eating and drinking damnation unto themselves.
Look, you say, "You catch more flies with honey." Okay, how many people in this room are an ex-Catholic? Put up your hand if you've ever been a Catholic. Look around. Well, it looks like the Baptists are reaching a lot of Catholics. You know what. It's not trough tip-toeing through the tulips and telling them, "Oh, yeah. Well, know you, you guys believe in Jesus. We believe in Jesus. You believe in the trinity. We believe in the trinity." Yeah, except that you guys are a bunch of idolatrous Pagans and we're Christians and we need to understand ...
Look, when we go soul-winning, obviously you don't preach the way that I'm preaching behind a pulpit to God's people at a door soul-winning. When I knock on the door and I talk to a Catholic, obviously I'm very kind and gentile. In meekness, instructing those that oppose themselves. If God peradventure will give them repentance. You say, "Well, why do you preach so hard about it in here?" Because this is a Baptist church. Everybody in here is supposedly saved. Everybody in here supposedly understands that the Catholic Church is an abomination. The reason that somebody needs to get up and preach hard is because if I don't get up and preach hard and lay it out there, then what you have is Baptist churches filled with people who think Catholics are saved. I've been in Independent Fundamental Baptist churches. I've been in other denominations of Baptist churches where they think John Paul is saved.
I mean, one time, I remember one time I was at a swimming pool party with a youth group of a Baptist church. This was when I was about sixteen. Somebody had a towel over their head like this because they had just gotten out of the pool. Somebody said to this girl, "Hey, you look like Mother Theresa with that towel on your head." I said, "I have an impression of Mother Theresa." I said, "Here's my impression of Mother Theresa," because she's dead. I said, "Oh, you don't like that one? Here's another impression of Mother Theresa. Ahhhhhh!" I said, "Because she's burning in hell right now."
Every single person at that pool party condemned me and said, "How dare you judge her. How dare you say that she's in hell. She was a wonderful, godly Christian," they say. "Wonderful, godly Christian. She was greater than any of us." I said to them, "How do you know that?" I said, "Have you ever heard Mother Theresa say a single word?" They said no. I said, "Do you know what language Mother Theresa speaks? Is it English?" "I don't know." I said, "Well, that proves that you've never heard anything that she's ever said." I said, "What do you know about Mother Theresa?" "Well, she's Catholic." "Okay. What else do you know about her?" "Oh, she did good things." I said to these teenagers, I said, "Is that how you get to heaven? By being Catholic and doing good things?" That's what I said to them.
This was like a wake up call for me because I thought that most of my friends were saved. At the end of that conversation, I realized they all virtually had no clue that salvation was by faith alone. They were like, "Well, you do have to do good works." I'm like, "Whoa, this is a Baptist church." I'm telling you, this is where we're at today, friend. Look, if you go soul-winning, you'll talk to people from Baptist churches, they don't even know what the gospel is. Listen, in the end times what we're seeing is an ecumenical movement where basically the Catholic Church is uniting with all these other churches and all these other religions.
I mean, when I was in Sacramento, California, even sixteen years ago, they had an event called Jesus Christ Jubilee 2000 that was put on by the Roman Catholic Church and I went out and stood outside of it. You know, I don't do this kind of stuff anymore because it's a waste of time. I go door-to-door soul-winning. I stood out there with a sign, with my brother and a friend of ours, I had a sign that said, it was like the drinking and driving don't mix but I just changed it to Catholic and Christians don't mix. You know, my brother had a sign that said, "We're saved by faith, not the sacraments," or whatever. You know, I don't believe in holding signs and stuff because it's a waste of time.
We stood out there and I saw literally scores of people that I went to Christian school with over the years, you know, because it's a small world of evangelical Christians in Sacramento. I was seeing person after person. "Steve, how you doing? Whoa, what are you doing?" I was able to turn away about a third of them where they turned around and got in their car and left. "Hey did you know that this event is put on by a Catholic bishop? Did you know that this is a Roman Catholic thing and that's it's supposed to be bringing all religions together?" Then, another third of the people walked out halfway through and said, "Man, you were right. They're saying that we should all agree on doctrine and put aside differences with the Catholics and everybody." Then, you know one-third followed Lucifer and his angels to damnation. That's a true story. I'm talking of people that I knew. I grew up in pretty fundamentalist, pretty conservative circles. That's why a lot of the people that I was seeing would be the type of people that would be turned away.
I'm telling you, that's where we're at today. This ecumenical, don't offend anyone. Look, the Baptist preachers of the past said the Pope is an anti-Christ. You couldn't even be Baptist if you didn't believe that. I'm not kidding. I mean, every single Baptist. That's part of being a Baptist is that the Pope is an anti-Christ in the place of Christ and that the church is the whore of Babylon and that the church is Satanic, the Roman Church, that is. That's part of being a Baptist. Today, people say, "Tone that down." No, I'm not going to tone it down. You know what's funny? They'll get mad at me for making a joke at a pool party that's in bad taste, at a swimming pool, but they don't mind the Catholic Church torturing and murdering millions of people. That's what I'm going to get into tonight, the millions of people tortured and killed by the Catholic Church. You say, "Well, I don't like this kind of preaching." Well, then, stay home tonight.
Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer.
Father, we thank you so much, Lord, that we don't need to bow a knee to a guy in a dress who calls himself Papa, dresses like Mama, and looks like a homo. Lord, thank you so much that we have the mediator of Christ. Thank you so much that we can boldly come unto the throne of grace, Lord, and that we have salvation through faith in Christ, not through baptism, not through a church, not through rituals and voodoo and sacraments and all kinds of kneeling and genuflecting, Lord. Thank you that we have the gospel of Christ to save us.
Lord, as we go out soul-winning amongst the Catholics, Lord, help us not to hate them or take it out on them, Lord. They're just deceived. They've never even heard this stuff, Lord. Help us to be kind to Catholics and nice to them, but, Lord, help us not to give them a false sense of security by telling them that they're saved, Lord. Help us to gently show them, "No, you're not saved. Salvation is through faith, not through the church." Lord, I pray that you'd put your blessings on us this afternoon and also that you would bless the evening sermon, Lord, that this great hidden evil, this great cover up of this bloodbath that the Catholic Church is responsible for would come to light, Lord, and that people would realize that this institution known as the Roman Catholic Church is rotten to its very core. In Jesus' name we pray, amen.