Old Books

Today, I was reading in one of my old books, printed in 1871. One of the wonderful things about old books is that they have absolutely magnificent titles. The title of this book, in its entirety, is:

The Open Bible or The Hand of God in the Affairs of Men: Illustrating Prophetically and Historically the Great Conflict Between the Gospel and Its Enemies Together With The Council of the Vatican and the Bible -- Rev. Joseph F. Berg, D.D. – published by J.J. Foster & Co., 1871

As I read in the author’s preface, it struck me that what I was reading could have come from one of today’s newspapers:

The old struggle between the Christian Church and its enemies – between light and darkness – has recently developed itself, in various parts of the country, in an effort to exclude THE BIBLE FROM THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS. In this is discernible the same unholy and inexplicable enmity that produced the crimes enumerated in these pages—it may be, to a somewhat more restrained and modified degree, because of the advanced civilization and duplicity of a depraved and less powerful priesthood. That the result of this struggle is fraught with momentous consequences to the American people, it is unnecessary for us to show. Our free institutions are the offspring of the Gospel; our national glory, its hold upon the executive, legislative, and judicial arms of the government; our only hope, its continued application to every system of education as a reformatory agency. In this view, the efforts of the papists are as bold in purpose as they are insulting in character, and demand of every friend of the Christian religion increased efforts in diffusing the truth-—though the feet of the Roman Church become entangled in it, and their progress effectually impeded… (emphasis in original).Ibid., pp. vii-viii

I find it interesting that, at the time these words were written, the Catholic Church was perceived by some to be a leader of the effort to remove the Bible from public schools. I have not discovered to what degree, if any, the RCC is involved in the current drive to remove the Scriptures from our schools. However, I do not doubt that Mother Church’s skirts cover a multitude of activities designed to wrest the last vestige of non-Catholic religion, and in particular the Bible, from our public schools.

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us. There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after. -- Ecclesiastes 1:9-11, KJV

Included in this book are a number of accounts that show to what levels of atrocity the Catholic Church is able to descend when she enjoys the blessings of a national government, or herself as the governing body over a territory. Though some of the accounts are based on third-party, or later, testimony, there also are a number of first person tellings of experiences at the hands of the Inquisition. Even more damning, are transcripts of ecclesial and secular court decisions handed down for such terrible heresies as refusing to adore the host, reading the Bible in one's’ home and, worst of all, evangelizing for Protestantism. Over the next few weeks, I may post a few of these, for the purpose of showing what Catholicism is capable of when in she enjoys the favor of secular rulers.

Catholic readers will, of course, take exception to these accounts, likely denying their authenticity. This is to be expected, for they are sworn to defend their Church as soldiers from the moment of their Confirmation. I invite no debate from Catholic apologists, for this forum is not designed for that purpose. All who read here are invited to determine for themselves whether to accept or reject what is posted here.

In closing what must be considered an introductory post, I call again upon the words of Dr. Berg:

The duty of all who believe the gospel of Jesus Christ is to hold fast to Bible principles, and in all the relations which they sustain to the political and religious institutions of the country, to allow no compromise with the great enemy of the free circulation of the Scriptures. – Joseph F. Berg, Op. cit., p. x

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