The Red Dragon and Rome.

See Empires Diagram

Rev 12:3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
Rev 12:4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

The above verses make clear, in even superficial reading, that the Great Red Dragon is Satan. But there is another relationship that is not as readily apparent. Verse 4 is referring to the birth of Jesus, and Satan's attempt to kill the infant Jesus. Satan however, did not attempt this act of murder on his own. He made his attempt through the power of one man on earth. This man is identified:

Mat 2:13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

Herod the Great, the King of Judea and Palestine was the agent Satan used in his attempt to kill the infant Jesus. It is significant to note that Herod received his office from the Roman Empire. In 37 B.C. Herod the Great conquered Jerusalem with the aid of Roman armies and made himself king.

Now notice again in Rev 12:3 that Satan is described as having seven heads, ten horns and seven crowns. This is important because it is a key to identify Satan and his agents elsewhere in Revelation:

Rev 13:1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
Rev 13:2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.

Here another agent of Satan can be found. Although nearly identical in description, it is not Satan, because verse 2 says this beast power gets his power from the dragon - a clear reference to Satan. As we observed in Matthew, Satan used the power of the ancient Roman Empire to attempt the murder of Jesus. The dragon and Rome worked with the same mind toward the same goal. So in Rev 13:2 we can possibly substitute Rome for the word Dragon. Lets explore a little farther.

Note the animals that are mentioned. This is a reference back to Daniel 7. John the Revelator was looking backwards in sequence at the previous empires, to give us a time hack if you will, to identify this Sea Beast in the stream of time. The Lion (Babylon) is referred to as the head of Gold in Dan 2, the Bear (Medo-Persia) which is also the chest of silver in Dan 2, and the Leopard (Greece) the thighs of brass in Dan 2. Now there is also a fourth beast in Dan 7, to match the legs of iron in Dan 2 -

Dan 7:7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had TEN HORNS.

This fourth diverse beast with ten horns correlates to ancient pagan Rome. Ancient pagan Rome, when it disintegrated, was followed by the divided kingdoms, which is to say a divided Europe (a condition that exists today), represented by the feet and TEN TOES of clay and iron in Dan 2.

The Winged Dragon and Rome

In 312 A.D. Emperor Constantine was about to enter into battle with his rival emperor Maxentius. Greatly outnumbered by his opponents army, Constantine on the day before the impending battle saw a vision in the sky of a cross with the words "In Hoc Signo Crucis Vinces" emblazoned about it, which means "In This Sign (the Cross) You Shall Conquer". Constantine immediately adopted the cross as his emblem and had it put on troops and banners. The following day Constantine defeated Maxentius in the battle of Milvian Bridge. Constantine went on to declare Christianity the state religion of Rome and was himself later baptized a Christian.

A fresco in the Vatican, (The Sala di Constantino, Palazzi Vaticani, Rome) painted by RAFFAELLO (1509-10 A.D.) depicts Emperor Constantine's Vision of the Cross.

In the fresco, note what is in the upper right-hand corner (and shown above). There you will see a winged serpent, or dragon. Raffaello was depicting a pivotal moment in the conversion of Pagan Rome to Christianity, the dragon he painted being symbolic of ancient Pagan Rome.

Dragon Coat of Arms of Pope Gregory XIII

Curiously, one of the Popes adopted the winged serpent or dragon as his symbol on his heraldic shield. Here is the heraldic coat of arms of Pope Gregory XIII, 1572-1585 A.D., who is most known for initiating the calendar reform in use today, the Gregorian calendar. This is something you can confirm in the book The Pope Encyclopedia by Matthew Bunsen, published by Crown Trade Paperbacks, 1995, ISBN 0-517-88256-6, page 163.

The coat of arms of Gregory XIII shown here is one of two that can be found above the doors in the Gallery of Maps in the Vatican. Revelation 12 clearly tells us that the dragon is symbolic of Satan, so why did a pope use it as his symbol?

In 1582, by decree of Gregory XIII (Inter Gravissimas), 10 days were dropped from the calendar, and a new system of leap years was inaugurated.

Dragon Coat of Arms of Pope Gregory XIII

From the book
"The New Illustrated Great Controversy"
Copyright © LLT Productions
Used by Permission

Dan 7:25 And he [the little horn] shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

Changing Times and Laws


(Year of Restitution 1582)

The above papal medal of Pope Gregory XIII, designed by L Parm, is dated 1582, marking the year of the Gregorian calendar reform. On the reverse of the medal is a winged dragon / serpent encircling a ram's head. As previously mentioned, the dragon is the biblical symbol of Satan (Rev 12:9). The serpent that is chasing or devouring its tail is called Ouroboros, Uroboros, or Oureboros. The ram's head is also a satanic symbol, and is frequently associated with the Egyptian deities, such as the god Amon (Amoun, Ammun, Ammon), the king of all gods, who was also regarded as the sun god, and Khnum, who created mankind on his potter's wheel from the mud of the Nile.

The intended symbolic meaning, however, is undoubtedly that of Aries the Ram, the first sign of the Zodiac, which symbolizes the Vernal / Spring Equinox, and Draco / Drako (or Ouroboros) the serpent depicting a cyclical returning. Pope Gregory XIII had modified the calendar specifically so that the Vernal Equinox would remain relatively constant, on or about March 21st, which is the beginning of the Zodiacal year, when the Sun crosses the Equator and enters the astrological sign of Aries. This had the desired result of returning Easter to the time specified by the Nicene Council (325 A.D.).

Dragon on Pope Gregory 13th's Vatican monument

At left is the tomb of Pope Gregory XIII which celebrates the Gregorian Calendar reform, and above is a close up of the guardian dragon near the base of the monument. At the top of the monument (but not visible in the photo at left) is a large heraldic shield for Gregory XIII, which contains the winged dragon, a symbol of Satan.

Wearing Out the Saints


Pope Gregory XIII, with the dragon of Satan as his heraldic symbol, was also the pope who upon hearing of the wholesale slaughter of Protestant French Huguenots, known as St. Bartholomew's massacre, had a medal struck to celebrate the bloody event. The reverse side of the medal, shown above, depicts an angel with a cross and sword murdering the Huguenot heretics.

To his credit, while in Paris to celebrate the 12th World Youth Day on Saturday, August 23rd, 1997, the eve of the anniversary of the massacre, Pope John Paul II made a brief apology for the acts of French Catholics 425 years before, by admitting that "Christians did things which the Gospel condemns."

A second pope, Paolo V (1605-1621) also used a winged dragon on his heraldic shield along with an eagle. In the Vatican Gardens there is a fountain called the Fountain of Towers, bearing the inscription and papal shield of Paolo V, in which the central figure of the fountain is a winged dragon centered in water spouts. Flanking either side of the fountain are fortress like towers topped by sculptures of winged dragons.
Photo by Mario Carrieri
Because it somewhat resembles an altar, this fountain has also been called the Fountain of the Sacrament, or in Italian, Fontana del Santissimo Sacramento. The spray of water from the dragon's mouth is said to imitate the rays of a sunburst monstrance.

Fountain of Towers, Vatican Gardens

The Transfer of Power to the Bishop of Rome.

As we established with Rev 12:4, the dragon's agent in trying to kill Christ was ancient Rome (through Herod). With this relationship of Dragon = Rome we can see that the beast from the sea of Revelation 13 should get his power and seat and great authority from the Ancient Roman Empire, through Satan, just like Herod did. This prompts the question, did ancient Rome formally bestow its power and authority on any existing power?

A check of history will reveal the successor to the Roman emperors. With the move of the Roman capitol to Constantinople, there was a political power vacuum that was quickly and willingly filled by the Bishop of Rome-

[p. 269] Whatever Roman elements the barbarians and Arians left … [came] under the protection of the Bishop of Rome, who was the chief person there after the Emperor’s disappearance… [p. 270] The Roman Church in this way privily pushed itself into the place of the Roman World-Empire, of which it is the actual continuation; the empire has not perished, but has only undergone a transformation … That is no mere “clever remark,” but the recognition of the true state of the matter historically, and the most appropriate and fruitful way of describing the character of this Church. It still governs the nations … It is a political creation, and as imposing as a World-Empire, because the continuation of the Roman Empire. The Pope, who calls himself “King” and “Pontifex Maximus,” is Caesar’s successor.

Source: Adolf Harnack, What Is Christianity? trans. by Thomas Bailey Saunders (2d ed., rev.; New York: Putnam, 1901), pp. 269, 270. [Ernest Benn Ltd., London, has recently published a new edition of this book.]

The archetype from which the pope descends is that of the imperial Caesar, ... while for the most part Italy wasn't even a unified state - unlike France, Spain, England, Russia - that unique supreme Christian authority, purely Italian, nevertheless continued to represent the universality descended from the emperors. It is not paradoxical to say that in Italy the monarchy has continued to exist despite the expulsion of the royal House of Savoy, because the monarchical authority of the pontiff has a charisma and a national power of attraction that no president of the republic has ever been able to claim.

Source: Why the next pope needs to be Italian, by Roberto Pazzi, The International Herald Tribune Online, Monday, January 12, 2004, translated by Ann McGarrell from Italian.

One of the most famous forged documents ever was the Donation of Constantine, which it was claimed, proved that Emperor Constantine had given authority and property to the Pontiff of Rome. For many centuries the Donation of Constantine was used by the Catholic church to validate it's claim to authority. OK, you say, but that was a forgery - it was not an authentic transfer of power to the Papacy. True. There was such a document however, the authenticity of which is not challenged even to this day. In 533 A.D. Roman Emperor Justinian in the Justinian Code declared the Bishop of Rome to have the first rank of all pontiffs, head of all Christian churches, and that he (Justinian) would exert every effort to increase the honor and authority of the Apostolic See of Rome! This was the formal transfer of power from the Emperor of Pagan Rome to the Papacy. It should be noted however, the implementation of this decree did not actually occur until 538 A.D. when a siege of Rome by the Ostrogoths was broken.

Dan 7:7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.

Rome is described in Dan 7:7 as diverse, or different from previous powers. This is because, as we have seen, the ancient Pagan Roman empire GAVE political power and religious authority to it's successor, the Roman Catholic Church.

Note that each of the beasts in Daniel can be described as UNIVERSAL powers that dominated the world at the time. Ancient Rome also was a universal power, yet in time, the Roman empire faded. It's clear successor is the UNIVERSAL (Catholic) CHURCH - again another universal power. Rome was the diverse fourth power because it evolved from a Pagan Political power, into a Christian religious AND political power, though still dominated by Pagan beliefs.

The "Little Horn" Power

Dan 7:8 I considered the (10) horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, ...

 Pope Pius IX gave this remarkable testimony:

"It is, therefore, by a particular decree of Divine Providence that, at the fall of the Roman Empire and its partition into separate kingdoms, the Roman Pontiff, whom Christ made the head and center of his entire Church, acquired civil power." − Pius IX, Apostolic Letter Cum Catholica Ecclesia, March 26, 1860.

Source: Papal Teachings: The Church, selected and arranged by the Benedictine Monks of Solesmes, translated by Mother E. O'Gorman, R.S.C.J., Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart, St. Paul Editions, Boston, © 1980, 1962 by Daughters of St. Paul, Library of Congress catalog card number 62-12454, par. #225, page 160.

Divine Providence indeed! Daniel had prophesied it! The phrase "little horn" indicates a "little kingdom". This is one of the distinguishing characteristics of this entity, its small size geographically. The Vatican, the headquarters for the Catholic Church located in Rome, is today the smallest independent country in the world, covering only about 108 acres in size. The papal monarchy came up among the divided kingdoms (the 10 horns), after the fall of the Rome Empire, and has had influence greatly disproportionate to its geographical size.

Dan 7:8 ... before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: ...

Who were these three kingdoms that were uprooted? The Heruli, Vandals, and finally the Ostrogoths. Each of them were Arian, considered heretics by the Roman Catholic Church, and were defeated by the Emperor on the Pope's behalf.

Dan 7:8 ... and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.

This now should be an obvious reference to the great things and blasphemies spoken by a man of the Roman Catholic church (the Papacy), that persecuted the saints for 1260 years, changed the day of rest and tampered with the Ten Commandments and also defeated three other European political powers that followed the downfall of the Roman Empire.

Tampering with God's Unchangeable Law.

Look at Daniel 7:25 -

Dan 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High,
and shall wear out the saints of the most High,
and think to change times and laws (of the most High):
and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

Note what I added in parenthesis above. The Little Horn (The Papacy) thinks to be able to change times and laws, and in context it is speaking about the times and laws of God. So has the Papacy, the Roman Catholic Church, claimed that the Law of of God, the Ten Commandments can be changed? Indeed they do. They think they have done it by changing the day of rest to Sunday! In one action they have fulfilled that portion of the prophecy of Daniel 7:25, changing both the time and the law of God.

Here is a link to the Catholic New Advent web page. Note what they say about the Sabbath commandment (3rd by Catholic reckoning)-

Here is a link to the Catholic Baltimore Catechism on the Sabbath commandment. Read #353 to #360...

Here is the General index to the Baltimore Catechism.

Note the fate of this beast in Daniel:

Dan 7:11 I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flame.

This is also a reference to:

Rev 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

Continuing to follow the trail of seven heads and ten horns in the Bible leads us also to a beast in Rev 17, the same beast destroyed in Rev 19:20 as we have just seen.

Rev 17:3 So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.
Rev 17:4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:
Rev 17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.

Note the contrast of this woman with the woman found in Rev 12. In scripture a woman commonly represents a church (Jer 6:2, Isa 54:5-6, Hos 2:19-20, John 3:29, 2 Cor 11:2, Rev 19:7-8). The symbolic woman of Rev 12 represents the righteous church of believers that brought forth Jesus and is described in admirable terms. Compare that with the symbolic woman described here in Rev 17, the apostate church. Note that this church is described as the Mother of Harlots. There is only ONE Christian church that is self-described as the Mother church - the Roman Catholic Church - and her Protestant daughters are called harlots.

The Mother Church
St. John Lateran Cathedral


© 1999-2004 by Gregory Ferdinandsen

Above is the inscription at the base of the columns on either side of the central entrance door of St. John Lateran, the Cathedral of the Bishop of Rome, the pope. It reads:


It translates to "Sacred Lateran Church, Universally for the City and the World, Supreme Mother of Churches", a fulfillment of Revelation 17:5.


Rev 17:18 And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.

Here we are told that the woman of Rev 17, the apostate church, is the same entity as the great city of Babylon that reigns over the kings of the earth, found in Rev 18. There is only one church that history shows to have made the claim of authority over the kings of the earth. That church is the Roman Catholic Church, and Babylon is the code word for the city of Rome-

1 Pet 5:13 The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son.

This verse is widely recognized as meaning Rome, not Babylon. Roman Catholics have even acknowledged this association:

"Babylon," from which Peter addresses his first Epistle, is understood by learned annotators, Protestant and Catholic, to refer to Rome - the word Babylon being symbolic of the corruption then prevailing in the city of the Caesars.

Source: Faith of Our Fathers, by James Cardinal Gibbons, 111th printing, Published by TAN Books and Publishers, INC., P.O. Box 424, Rockford, Illinois 61105, Copyright 1980, page 87.

Here is wisdom

There are two verses in Revelation that have a striking relationship, both calling for wisdom:

Rev 13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

Rev 17:9 And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth.

This is a clear linkage of the number 666 with the woman that sits on seven mountains. A woman is common symbology in the Bible for a church. Look in any encyclopedia and you will discover that Rome is the city of seven hills or mountains. It is very interesting to note that Vatican City and St. Peter's Basilica of the Catholic Church were built upon what was called in Latin vaticanus mons or vaticanus collis, which when translated means "hill of prophecy":

vatis / vatic = prophecy, anus = of
mons / collis = hill or mountain.

Rev 17:18 And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.

Pope Pius the 12th - 1958

Pope John the 23rd - 1959


Pope Paul the 6th - 1963


Above are three 100 Lire coins minted by Vatican City, or the "City of Prophecy". (Click on a coin for a closer look.) Vatican City is unwittingly declaring itself to be that woman of Revelation 17, the church that claims to rule over the kings of the earth, because the Catholic Church is portrayed on the coins as a woman (FIDES = FAITH) with a cup in her hand (a golden cup of the Mass with sunburst Eucharist host) as described in Rev 17:4:

Rev 17:4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:
Rev 17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.

The cup the woman holds represents false doctrine; fornication or adulteration of the truth.



Above is a bronze papal medal (Mazio #585) of Pope Leo XII, minted to commemorate the second year of his reign, the jubilee year of 1825. Again the Roman Catholic Church is portrayed as a woman seated on the globe with a cup in her hand. The inscription on the reverse reads SEDET SUPER UNIVERSUM, declaring that her seat of authority is universal, i.e., over the entire globe.

Below are illustrations of two more coins (gold - 2 Zecchini) minted during the reign of Leo XII, which depict FIDES (the Catholic Faith) as a woman on the reverse side, also holding the golden cup of the Mass.

2 Zecchini, 22mm diam., 6.9g, .998 gold, Fr. 253, KM 1089
Pope Leo XII - 1825 (Anno III)
Populis Expiatis

Pope Leo XII - 1828 (Anno V)
Supra Firmam Petram

Illustration from Standard Catalogue of World Coins
by Chester L. Krause and Clifford Mishler
19th Century Edition 1801-1900
Copyright MCMXCVI by Krause Publications, INC.

A gold Scudo minted during the reign of Pope Clement XI in 1718
(Anno XVIII) with a cup holding Fides on the reverse. (Berman 2363, KM 771)

The woman of Rev 17, holding a golden cup, is described in verse 6 as being drunk with the blood of martyrs of Jesus. There is only one Christian church responsible for the death of thousands and thousands of fellow Christians during prolonged periods of persecution - the Roman Catholic Church. This happened in what is called the Dark Ages of European history. Christians were burned at the stake for possessing a Bible, speaking verses in the common tongue rather than Latin, or contradicting the policies of the Papacy. Uncounted thousands were slaughtered during this persecution. Note the following:

(Rev 13:15) ... And cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be put to death.

Christ does not do so, neither his Prophets or Apostles teach so, neither have the kings that are Christians received any such instructions to kill men, or to make them think that the worship of Christ is to be stained with blood; for the true God doth not desire any forced, but voluntary service. Wherefore by his mark especially will he make it evident to all that have any understanding, that indeed he is the Antichrist; that indeed he is not Christ, but, according to his name, opposite and contrary to Christ. He is Christ that sheds his own blood, he is Antichrist that sheds the blood of others. -- Rupertus, Abbot of Tuits, in his12th century commentary on Revelation, Apoc. lib. 3. cap. 13.

Source: Pierre Allix, Ecclesiastical History of Ancient Churches of the Piedmont, published in Oxford at the Clarendon Press in 1821, reprinted in USA in 1989 by Church History Research & Archives, P.O. Box 38, Dayton Ohio, 45449, p. 230


The woman of Revelation 17 also rides a beast, and in Bible prophecy a beast is symbolic of a political power or country. So the woman / church of Revelation 17 rides on the political power of the state. The Vatican is not only a city, but since the Lateran Treaty of 1929 signed with Mussolini it is again also a country, with diplomatic relations with nearly every other nation on earth, and the Pope is the head of state. On the left is the Vatican state flag.

She also bears the name of Mystery. Mystery is the term used by the Roman Catholic Church to refer to the Mass, specifically the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ. It is a key part of Catholic dogma. These are the words of the priest in Latin or English (emphasis is mine):



The Latin Mass online at True Catholic, with an English translation.

She is described in Revelation 17:3 as full of names of blasphemy. How does the Bible define blasphemy? Here is one biblical definition:

Mark 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
Mark 2:6 But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts,
Mark 2:7 Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?

Only God has the power to forgive you your sins. Yet the Roman Catholic Church claims this power for it's priests. In addition, for hundreds of years the Roman Catholic Church sold what it called indulgences. By contributing to the church, your sins could be forgiven. Indeed the Vatican itself was built by funds raised in this manner. Indulgences continue today in the form of penance. They claim there are works you can do that bear either partial remittance of sins or plenary (full) remittance of sins. So, with the blessing of the church, you can forgive your own sins by your own actions. As Mark 2:3-5 shows, these are examples of the blasphemy described in Rev 17:3.

Conclusions Evident with Additional Facts:

A. The Roman Catholic Church (Papal Rome) is the beast from the sea of Rev 13, the woman of Rev 17 and the Babylon of Rev 18.

B. The Papacy is the Antichrist of Rev 13, whose number is 666, and he is the little horn of Daniel 7 and 8. His mark of authority is Sunday worship (the mark of the beast).

C. The Protestant churches derived from the Catholic Church are considered harlots. This is because they still adhere to much of the Catholic inspired false doctrine (like the dead go immediately to heaven or hell) and bear it's mark of authority (Sunday worship). It can be shown that U.S. based Protestantism is in fact the False Prophet of Revelation, as well as the image to the beast, the beast being Catholicism.

D. The power behind the Papacy of the Roman Catholic Church is none other than Satan. He first attempted to use Rome to kill the infant Jesus. He also used the Roman empire to try to exterminate the early Christians. This just forced Christianity underground, even in a literal sense, yet it still flourished. So Satan changed tactics and infiltrated the church through Pagan practices and began to persecute those who clung to true doctrine, by using the church itself as the exterminator. This era of papal power began in 538 A.D. and ended in 1798 a period of 1260 years. This is the period referred to as 1260 days, 42 months, and 3 1/2 times in the Bible.

The 1260 years of Papal Supremacy

Catholic writers attest to 12 centuries of Papal Supremacy and Sovereignty:

[pg. 6]

9. ... In books of all sizes, and from the pulpit of every church, we have been taught from our infancy, that the "beast, the man of sin, and the scarlet whore," mentioned in the Revelations, were names which God himself had given to the Pope; and we have all been taught to believe of the Catholic Church, that her worship was "idolatrous," and that her doctrines were "damnable."

10. Now let us put a plain question or two to ourselves, and to these our readers; and we shall quickly be able to form a

[pg. 7]

just estimate of the modesty, sincerity, and consistency of these revilers of the Catholic religion: ―they will not, because they cannot, deny, that this religion was the ONLY CHRISTIAN religion in the world for fifteen hundred years after the death of Christ. They may say, indeed, that for the first three hundred years there was no Pope seated at Rome. But, then, for twelve hundred years there had been; and, during that period, all the nations of Europe, and some part of America, had become Christian, and all acknowledged the Pope as their head in religious matters; and, in short, there was no other Christian Church known in the world, nor had any other ever been thought of. Can we believe, then, that Christ, who died to save sinners, who sent forth his gospel as the means of their salvation, would have suffered a false Christian religion, and no other than a false Christian religion, to be known amongst men all this while? Will these modest assailants of the faith of their and our ancestors assert to our faces, that, for twelve hundred years at least, there were no true Christians in the world? Will they tell us, that Christ, who promised to be with the teachers of his word to the end of the world, wholly left them, and gave up hundreds upon hundreds of millions of people to be led in darkness to their eternal perdition, by one whom his inspired followers had denominated the "man of sin, and the scarlet whore"? Will they, indeed, dare to tell us, that Christ gave up the world wholly to "Antichrist" for twelve hundred years?

Source: History of the Protestant Reformation in England and Ireland, Showing How That Event Has Impoverished and Degraded the Main Body of the People in Those Countries, by William Cobbett, published in 1832 in New York by John Doyle, 12 Liberty-street; and Thomas Doyle, Market-street, Providence R.I., pages 6 and 7.


    Now the abandonment of Rome was the liberation of the Pontiffs. Whatsoever claims to obedience the Emperors may have made, and whatsoever compliance the Pontiff may have yielded, the whole previous relation, anomalous, and annulled again and again by the vices and outrages of the Emperors, was finally dissolved by a higher power. The providence of God permitted a succession of irruptions, Gothic, Lombard, and Hungarian, to desolate Italy, and to efface from it every remnant of


the Empire. The Pontiffs found themselves alone; the sole fountains of order, peace, law, and safety. And from the hour of this providential liberation, when, by a Divine intervention, the chains fell off from the hands of the successor of St. Peter, as once before from his own, no sovereign has ever reigned in Rome except the Vicar of Jesus Christ.. The moral import of this Divine action must be adequately appreciated. It cancelled, abolished, and extinguished finally and for ever the right of conquest, possession, occupation, and property claimed by the Emperors over Italy and Rome.

[pg. 11]

For three hundred years, then, the Church had over it, in Rome itself, a temporal power, to which it rendered obedience in all things that were lawful. In this it only obeyed the precept, "Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's.

    But from the hour when Constantine, in the language of the Roman law, "Deo jubente," by the command of God, translated the seat of empire to Constantinople, from that moment there never reigned

[pg. 12]

in Rome a temporal prince to whom the Bishops of Rome owed a permanent allegiance. From that hour God Himself liberated His Church. ... Therefore, in that day when the first Christian emperor withdrew himself into the far East, he abandoned Rome and Italy; and the "donation" of Constantine, as it is called, expresses not a fact, but a principle. Constantine signed no instrument of donation; but the manner of conceiving and of speaking, in those simple ages, so represented the provi-

[pg. 13]

dential fact of the donation of God. God gave to the Vicar of His Son the possession of the city in which thirty of his predecessors has sealed their testimony with their blood. The donation of Constantine consisted in the simple providential fact, that he departed from Rome to Constantinople, moved by an impulse from God himself. It would delay me too long to dwell upon the motives which God implanted in the first Christian emperor, to impel him to abandon his sovereignty in Rome. They were motives of a supernatural origin, and he was but obeying a supernatural impulse. The donation was of God, and not of man. ...

[pg. 16]

    I say, then, that it was God's own act which liberated His Vicar upon earth from subjection to temporal power; and that for twelve hundred years the Bishops of Rome have reigned as temporal princes. They have possessed their own. No man has given to them their sovereign rights. They reign there as Christian princes by the providence of God. They are the first example of a Christian monarchy, the first seed of Christian Europe, the first roll of Christian princes. When France was yet distracted by con-

[pg. 17]

flicting races, when England was divided by the Heptarchy, when Germany was a forest, and when Spain was a desolation, the Vicar of Christ already reigned as a sovereign prince in Rome.

[pg. 126]

It is true, indeed, that in the three centuries between the conversion of Constantine [312 A.D.] and the period of St. Gregory the Great [590-604 A.D.], in those three centuries of turbulence and disorder, invasion and warfare, by which Italy and Rome was afflicted, the temporal power of the Supreme Pontiff was only in its beginning; but about the seventh century it was firmly established, and that which the Divine Providence had prepared from the beginning received its full manifestation; and no sooner was the material power which once reigned in Rome consecrated and sanctified by the investiture of the Vicar of Jesus Christ with the temporal sovereignty over the city where he dwelt, than he began to create throughout Europe the order of Christian civilization,

[pg. 127]

Christian empires, Christian monarchies, which, confederated together, have maintained the peace and order of the world from that hour to this. What we call Christendom, that is to say, the great family of Christian nations, Christian races organised and knit together with their princes and their legislatures, by international law, mutual contracts, treaties, diplomacy, and the like, which bind them together in one compact body—what is this but the security of the world against disorder, turbulence, and lawlessness? And now for these twelve hundred years the peace, the perpetuity, and the fruitfulness of the Christian civilization of Europe, has been owing solely in its principle of this consecration of the power and the authority of the great Empire of Rome, taken up of old, perpetuated, preserved, and as I have said, by the salt which has been sprinkled from heaven and continued in the person of the Supreme Pontiff, and in that order of Christian civilization of which he has been the creator.

[pg. 182]

The conversion of the empire to Christianity, and then its removal, its banishment into the far East, freed the Vicar of Jesus Christ from temporal subjection; and then, by the action of the same Providence, he was clothed with the prerogatives of a true and proper local sovereignty over that state and territory and people so committed to his charge. From that hour, which I might say was fifteen hundred years ago, or, to speak within limit, I will say was twelve hundred, the Supreme Pontiff has been a true and proper sovereign, exercising the prerogatives of royalty committed to him by the will of God over the people to whom he is father in all things both spiritual and temporal.

Source: The Temporal Power of the Vicar of Jesus Christ, by Henry Edward Manning, D.D. (appointed Archbishop of Westminster in 1865 and Cardinal in 1875), second edition with a preface, published in 1862 in London by Burns & Lambert, 17 &18 Portman Street.

Take special note that Manning, who became a prince of the Roman Catholic Church, admits a twelve century rule by the Bishop of Rome, a twelve century period of temporal papal supremacy, that was well established by the seventh century.

Civil Power of the Roman Pontiff began with the fall and division of the Pagan Roman Empire

It is, therefore, by a particular decree of Divine Providence that, at the fall of the Roman Empire and its partition into separate kingdoms, the Roman Pontiff, whom Christ made the head and center of his entire Church, acquired civil power. − Pius IX, Apostolic Letter Cum Catholica Ecclesia, March 26, 1860.

Source: Papal Teachings: The Church, selected and arranged by the Benedictine Monks of Solesmes, translated by Mother E. O'Gorman, R.S.C.J., Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart, St. Paul Editions, Boston, © 1980, 1962 by Daughters of St. Paul, Library of Congress catalog card number 62-12454, par. #225, page 160.

In prophecy days are symbolic of years. The 70 weeks of Daniel 9:24 being the most commonly known example. Seventy weeks is 490 days, but actually means 490 years. If this is unclear to you please go to Time, Times, and Half a Time.  See also the 70 weeks Diagram (16K GIF) The following verses then, refer prophetically to a period of 1260 years of apostasy prevailing in the church:

Rev 11:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.

Rev 12:6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.

This period of 1260 days is also spoken of as 42 months:

Rev 11:2 But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.

Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
Rev 13:6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
Rev 13:7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

The 1260 days are also referred to as 3 1/2 times:

Dan 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

Dan 12:7 And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.

Rev 12:14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.

The 1260 Years Begin with the Implementation of Emperor Justinian's Decree

Arian Ostrogoths under Theodoric had controlled Italy since 493, and had even imprisoned Pope John I, who died in Ostrogoth custody in Ravenna in 526. Catholic Emperor Justinian, who began waging open war with the Arians in the 530s, declared the Bishop of Rome the head of all Christian churches in 533, and commissioned his General Belisarius to destroy the Arian Vandals and Ostrogoths. The Vandals were defeated in 534 in the battle of Tricamarum. Turning his attention to the Ostrogoths, General Belisarius took Rome in December of 536, and under the direction of Emperor Justinian, deposed Pope Silverius who had been installed by the last Ostrogoth King of Italy, Theodahad, who had terrorized the clergy into electing his pro-Gothic candidate. Belisarius installed Vigilius, a confidant of Empress Theodora, as the Bishop of Rome in March of 537. In quick reply, the Ostrogoths rallied and laid siege to Rome. When the siege was finally broken by General Belisarius in March of 538, the Ostrogoths withdrew from Rome in defeat, leaving it in the Emperor's control, and Vigilius as the Bishop of Rome (who reigned until 555 A.D.). So it was in 538 A.D. that Emperor Justinian's Decree of the supremacy of the Bishop of Rome over the Church could actually be implemented, beginning the prophetic 1260 years of temporal rule by the papacy.

The 1260 Years End with a Head Wound to Papal Power

The "head wound" to papal power was inflicted in 1798 when General Berthier of France captured Pope Pius VI, who soon died in captivity in Valence, on August 29, 1799.

... when the French general L. Duphot was killed in a riot in Rome the Directory ordered the occupation of the papal states. On 15 Feb. 1798 General Louis Berthier entered Rome, proclaimed the Roman Republic and the deposition of Pius as head of state, and forced him to withdraw to Tuscany. For several months he lived at the charterhouse at Florence, cut off from almost all his advisers, but able to use the nuncio to Florence as secretary of state. The Directory planned to banish him to Sardinia, but his precarious health ruled that out. When war broke out afresh, fearful of attempts to rescue him, it had him conveyed from Florence (28 Mar. 1799) via Turin across the Alps to Briancon (30 Apr.) and then Valence (13 July). He died a prisoner in the citadel there, and was buried in the local cemetery; his body was then transferred to St. Peter's, in Rome, in Feb. 1802.

Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Popes, by J. N. D. Kelly, Copyright 1986, published by Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-282085-0, page 302.

[p. 439] The object of the French directory was the destruction of the pontifical government, as the irreconcilable enemy of the republic… The aged pope [Pius VI] was summoned to surrender the temporal government; on his refusal, he was dragged from the altar… His rings were torn from his fingers, and finally, after declaring the temporal power abolished, the victors carried [p. 440] the pope prisoner into Tuscany, whence he never returned (1798).

The Papal States, converted into the Roman Republic, were declared to be in perpetual alliance with France, but the French general was the real master at Rome… The territorial possessions of the clergy and monks were declared national property, and their former owners cast into prison. The papacy was extinct: not a vestige of its existence remained; and among all the Roman Catholic powers not a finger was stirred in its defence. The Eternal City had not longer prince or pontiff; its bishop was a dying captive in foreign lands; and the decree was already announced that no successor would be allowed in his place.

Source: George Trevor, Rome: From the Fall of the Western Empire (London: The Religious Tract Society, 1868), pp. 439, 440.

See also The Deadly Wound of Revelation 13:3 for more details.

Wound Heals and Papal Power is Restored

Napoleon had closed down the Catholic Church and the Papacy, it's power was thought to be forever broken. The wound was largely healed in 1929 when Mussolini gave the Vatican back to the Pope and established it as a country in it's own right in the Lateran Treaty. Today the Vatican (a church), has formal diplomatic relations with almost every country in the world. (The woman of Rev 17 is the apostate church, who rides on the back of a beast representing the political power of the state.) The Vatican is the epitome of the church and state combined, and today the world wonders after the beast.

E. So finally, by identifying the woman in Rev 17 as the Roman Catholic Church, we note that she is also called Babylon the Great in verse 5 and again defined as such in verse 18.

Rev 16:10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
Rev 16:11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.

The fifth plague is directed specifically on the people of spiritual Babylon, the apostate church, located in Rome. Revelation 18 describes the destruction of the apostate church in detail.

In all this, is there any good news? Yes, most definitely.

Rev 18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.
Rev 18:5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.

It is clear that God has people that are now in Babylon. Everyone still has an opportunity to escape the wrath of God as manifested in the final 7 plagues. But in order to do so, you have to know who and what spiritual Babylon is. You must know the Antichrist and what the mark of the beast is and what the seal of God is. You have to be able to discriminate between true and false doctrine. You do all of this with the Bible. While Roman Catholicism is specifically evident as Babylon in scripture, it is actual broader than that. Spiritual Babylon is really a kind of corrupted religion, not just one denomination. Are you in Babylon? There is still time to get out of spiritual Babylon if you are in it - but it may not last much longer. Can you afford to wait? Would you bet your life (eternal) on it?

star.gif (4793 bytes) A Catholic rebuttal by Eric Hall