Summary: Babylon has a voice in every generation, until its demise in the end of time. See how she speaks in the 17th and 18th centuries...
FORTY: THE LEGS OF ROME
I have shown how Rome has ruled the earth from the days of the Caesars until about 1600 A.D. She has torn and plundered and deceived her way to power by use of Roman swords, German kings, Spanish Inquisitors, French missionaries. The Mistress riding every known power on earth, including elements of Christendom, to the heights of wealth, success, and pre-eminence is, I believe, a manifestation of the woman of the Revelation of John.
But wait. Almost 400 years left in the story. Can she not change, even yet? After all, even most Catholics agree with what I have recorded so far. Let us give her a chance to prove herself, to make things right, to repent.
We shall indeed give her that chance.
And now the story takes more and more of a multi-dimensional flavor. We slow our pace to view as many aspects as possible in our walk. And when it is finished - may I give you a preview? -
• much more bloodshed
• much greater deception which will bring Babylon to
• much greater power than she now has, for a short time.
I refer readers once more to the interpretation of the vision by Daniel:
The leg begins, on its way to the foot, as a substantial amount of flesh and bones. At the knee it has grown somewhat less substantial. And after the knee, a slight resurgence. Then it becomes quite thin at the ankle, and soon after joining the foot it loses its identity as a leg.
The Pagan Roman Kingdom was a super-power, as was the original Papal Kingdom. Through the years the substance, that is, the extent, of that Kingdom, has waned. But it still is identifiable as Rome, the only world power to be expected from the days of Greece until the days of antichrist, from whose Kingdom it will one day be severed.
Before we move on let us see how Jesus' countrymen, the Jews, are doing: a bull is issued in 1555 by Pope Paul IV. It becomes one of the landmarks in human persecution. There is to be, under the conditions of the bull, only one synagogue in every city. All others are to be destroyed. Jews are to own no real estate. What they presently own is to be sold to Christians. They are to wear a badge. Converted Jews who secretly continue to observe their faith are to be burned alive. Printed Hebrew books are to be burned.
The power, the greed, the Babylonian style religion, the enmity to the people called by God's name or seeking a deeper walk with God...the same identifying traditions - threads -continue, though names and faces change.
In the category of names that change: the term "inquisition" is changed to the "Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office"(1542). Though given a new name, the job is still the same, even to our present day (though its name has been changed again!): to protect faith and morals (Catholic-style faith and morals) to judge heresy (and to turn those condemned over to the secular arm, when nations involved will allow it) to examine and prohibit dangerous books, etc.
We'll meet the Holy Office again a little later.
FORTY-ONE: THE JESUITS