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So it was with great interest that I read of the meeting on March 11th between President Mohammed Khatami of Iran and the Pope in Rome. Khatami is trying to rid Iran of its terrorist image and bring in a more moderate form of Islam in the country. This is also the desire of the majority of the population, especially the younger generation.
Khatami said that the world had tired of terrorism and that peace had to be based on a "mutual respect of nations." He said that he hoped that the "spirit of Assisi would continue to act as a model for understanding between religions and people."
This is a reference to the gathering organised by the Pope in Assisi, Italy, in 1986 of 130 leaders of the world's major religions to pray for peace. Praying together were snake worshippers, fire worshippers, spiritists, animists, North-American Indian witch doctors, Buddhists, Moslems, Hindus, as well as various denominations of Christian clergymen. The Pope declared that all were praying to the same God.
As Khatami parted from the Pope, he said, "The hope is for a final victory of ethics and morals together with peace and reconciliation. May God protect you and please pray for me." One of the mullahs accompanying Khatami asked the Pope: "Can I do something?" He then warmly mbraced and kissed him.
A coming together of Rome and Islam should not really surprise us since both came out of the corruption of Christianity and both fulfil the definition of antichrist in 1 John 2:18-19: "They went out from us, but they were not of us: For if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us; but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us."
Both became ferocious persecutors of true Christians and denied the only way of finding real peace and reconciliation with God and our fellow human beings, through repentance and faith in the final sufficient atoning sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is also significant that Roman Catholicism became the dominant religion of the Western half of the Roman Empire and Islam the dominant religion of the Eastern half.
On a human level we may certainly see President Khatami as an improvement on Khomeini and the clerics who held power after the Islamic revolution in Iran. But on a spiritual level and with regard to end time prophecies, a coming together of Islam and Roman Catholicism in the name of "peace" is a powerful force for bringing in the end time religious system (see Revelation 17), which will be the greatest evil this world has ever known.
While it must be recognised that Islam does not speak with a united voice any more than does Christendom, the present Reconciliation Marches organised by YWAM and others to repent about what is called the "generational sins" allegedly committed during THE CRUSADES and the fact that the Pope has gone on record as being in favour of UNITY between the three major "mono-theistic" religionsIslam, Jewry and Christianitylooks very ominous in the light of the above. The ONE WORLD CHURCH may be closer than most of us realise.
Appeared in Volume 5.1 March/April 1999
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