Up until after the time of the Emperor Constantine, there was no real Pope as we know this office today. The church was scattered throughout the world and particularly across the Mediterranean area of the Roman Empire. Each major city looked to its own Bishop
The Sun Worshiper Constantine, is reported to have seen a vision of a cross and the words “in this sign conquer”. At that time the cross was considered a symbol of Tammuz the founder of Sun Worship; and Constantine used this vision, real or not, to gather the masses of pagans who worshiped the sun under the names of Jupiter, Saturn, Apollo, Baal etc, around his cause.
Achieving victory, he then began the arduous task of attempting to unify his empire.
Finding the sect of the Christians a divisive influence and finding many of them already lukewarm for the practical aspects of their religion; he entered into talks with the Bishop of Rome; Sylvester. Constantine agreed to legalize Christianity if the Bishop would support him as Emperor.
Constantine would support Sylvester as supreme bishop of the Christian church, and make the other bishops bow to him, and declare Christianity the official religion of Rome: if Sylvester would support Constantine as the Emperor or temporal leader.
Conferences of Bishops were then called to standardize teachings and secure the loyalty of the Bishops to Sylvester and Constantine. This was accomplished at the Councils of Nicaea and Laodicea as well as in many smaller meetings.
At these meetings the Sun worshiper Constantine forced the Christians to apostatize and accept the observation of the “Venerable Day of the Invincible Sun” as a day of rest and worship; instead of the Biblical Sabbath observed by Jesus Christ and His apostles.
Those who refused this change were forced to flee beyond the borders of the Empire, or be turned over to the authorities for punishment and often execution. That is how the Sunday of the pagans, came to be broadly observed and called “Christian” instead of the Sabbath commanded by God; which falls on Saturday.
The observance of the Sunday of the sun worshipers already accepted by most in the empire was then forced on all people by the power of the sword of Rome, as a part of the process of unifying the Empire under one religion.
Compromise after compromise was made until the now apostate “Christian” Church, became a new organism; A new faith, looking nothing like the faith of Christ and the early church.
A new class of Sun Worshipers who accepted the authority of a new Pontifix Maximus over the Empire; and who called themselves Christian while continuing most of their Sun Worshiping activities by simply renaming them Christian became the state religion of Rome.
Astarte’s day became Easter; The Saturnalia became Christmas; the mother goddess Semiramis became equated with the Virgin Mary, who was then exalted as fit to be worshipped, in defiance of Holy Scripture, and on and on.
Constantine remained a confirmed Sun Worshiper until the day of his death. On his deathbed, when he was too ill to resist; some water was sprinkled on him and he was pronounced a Christian.
The Roman Catholic Church and the Papacy; as we know it today, was born in the fourth and fifth centuries. Massive and awesome changes were made to bring this birth about.
The primacy of Peter, an Authoritarian form of Church Government system exalting men above the Word of God was brought in, placing the priests and popes between the people and God. [in our day this abominable idolatrous Nicolaitane system (which Jesus Christ HATES Rev 2:6, 2:15 because it separates him from his people) into the COG].
This false idolatrous system always results in great apostasy from the Holy Scriptures, as men begin to decide for themselves and allow a man to come between themselves and God, instead of standing on God’s Word.
I suggest that those who wish to dispute these findings do some inquiring and searching into history for themselves. These findings are certainly NOT unique to me. Take the time to discover the roots of modern Roman Catholic / Protestant Christianity
Transition in Rome
In Jeremiah 5:30, Jeremiah recorded that God said to him, “A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?”
“The prophets prophecy falsely and the priests bear rule by their means”. What does this mean? If we looked at Strong’s Concordance Word Number 3027, we see that the word means refers to presumptuously or with strength. So, the priests bear rule presumptuously and with strength or power dominating the people. God says is a wonderful and horrible thing, or in the marginal rendering, this is an astonishment and filthiness. “The prophets prophesy falsely, the priests bear rule by their means, and my people love to have it so”.
People have been taught to fear the human authority over them. They had been taught to believe that some man comes between them and God, that there is an intercessor, a mediator between man and God other than Jesus Christ.
And when people really believe this, when they believe that a man comes between them and God, that a man has the power to keep them out of God’s Kingdom, to keep them out of eternity, to keep them out of heaven or the paradise of God; having the power to prevent them from the being in the resurrection: When people really believe that, then this person has power, a real power, over those who believe such a thing and the people are enslaved with mental chains far stronger than any physical chains.
If the people believe that some person has the power to consign them to the second death, to consign them to the lake of fire, or as some teach to an ever burning eternal torment, that is real power. The people are enslaved with chains around their minds and around their spirit far more powerful, far stronger, far harder to break than any chains around their hands and feet.
In the ancient Roman Empire, the emperor was supreme. He had a huge area of land populated by many different peoples, and societies, and religions, and cultures, and there was a problem of controlling all those different people. Somebody over in Britain might say, “I don’t like the policies of Rome and I want independence”. And while the emperor was fighting in Britain, somebody might say the same thing in Bulgaria, and there was constant strife, constant upheaval, constant uprisings, and friction, and confusion, and the emperor had a headache.
The price of his empire was worry and stress, and he had a real problem maintaining his position and maintaining the empire. And then he began to notice that every culture, every society had their gods. And the people respected their gods, they worship their gods, they looked up to those gods, and each of these gods had their priests. And the priest had the respect of the people by teaching the people about this particular god, and by using his position as a priest of this particular god. And setting himself between the people and the god, the priest had great respect and great authority over the people.
Now Rome as an empire had many cultures and many gods. And it became very clear to the emperor that the way to power, the source of real power, lay in becoming a god. So, the emperor declared himself a god, or had the Senate proclaim him a god. This was not a difficult thing to do because he would just be one of many gods. Every culture respected the gods of other cultures and acknowledged their existence. One more wouldn’t make a whole lot of difference to the people, but it would make a lot of difference to the emperor. If he was a god, people would not dare to rebel against him. He would have that added degree of respect, the added degree of authority, and the added power of the superstition of the people.
So, the emperor declared himself to be a god. And this helps smooth out the affairs of the empire until the empire began to include the Jews in Judea. They did not acknowledge any other god as being a god. However, they tended to keep to themselves lest they’d be rendered unclean by the Gentiles; and except for commercial ventures, could pretty much be trusted to keep to themselves. So, this mingling was not a major problem until a person named Jesus Christ came on the scene. And He commanded his followers:
Matthew 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Jesus commanded his followers to go out and spread the word, to evangelize, to teach all nations that the Eternal was God, and that Jesus Christ was his son. To teach all nations to observe all the commandments of God and to teach all nations that there was only one God, the Eternal Father, and the Son. This was a real problem for Rome. As these people went out preaching, a certain man named Saul went out, called an apostle to the gentiles; and he toured through Greece and Asia Minor and ended up in Rome. And it was said of him and those with him that he turned the whole world upside down. And that is exactly what he did.
He taught there was no god but God, and the emperor was not God, and neither were any of these other gods.
Suddenly the whole empire was turned upside down because the very foundation of power, the foundation of authority, the basis of the authority of the emperor was being challenged. This could not be tolerated and persecutions began. Not because these people were some sort of monsters or they were evil, or they did all kinds of wicked things, but because their teachings about God and about the Eternal being, the only God, set the entire Roman empire back on its heels, undercut the foundations of the authority of the empire, and made it extremely difficult for him to maintain order in the empire as people began to think, “Well if he’s not God, then maybe I can get independence or maybe I can challenge this, law or that law, or challenge the rulings on this or that, or rebel, or rise up in some way”.
The Roman Empire was shaken. Now over a period of time the degree of persecution rose and fell according to the inclinations of the various emperors that came along. However, by a certain time about the beginning of the fourth century A.D., a man named Constantine sought the throne of Rome. This man Constantine is purported to have seen a vision of a cross, and hearing the words in this sign conquer. Since that time, it has been suggested and thought that this was the sign of the cross, and it was Christianity, and he was being converted to Christianity. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The cross is simply the same thing as the letter “t”. Go to your paper and write the letter “t” in English and you will find that it is a cross. And the letter “t” stood in the mind of Constantine who was a sun worshiper, for the high priest of the sun god Tammuz. The letter “t” stood for Tammuz. Tammuz was the originator of the worship of the sun. People who worship the sun will tell you, “We do not worship the sun. The sun is merely a symbol. It is a symbol of the light bringer”. And the first high priest of this religion, the first teacher of this religion, the originator of this religion was a man named Tammuz. Tammuz was high priest to the Sun God and the Sun God is only a symbol for the uninitiated, and the initiated know that the sun is merely a representation of the light bringer Lucifer.
Lucifer, the being who rebelled against God and who became his adversary and was renamed Satan, the adversary. Lucifer, the God of this world, who deceives the whole world, used as his symbol the sun, because his original name Lucifer meant “the light bringer”. Now Constantine worshipped the sun. He was a sun worshiper, but being initiated into the highest levels of the hidden mysteries, he was a Satan worshiper, a Lucifer worshiper. The sun was the symbol of his god and the letter “t” or the cross was the symbol of his high priest Tammuz. In fact the cross was not and has never been the symbol of Christianity. The cross is always been a symbol of the religion of sun worship and of Tammuz.
The cross was later adopted by certain elements within the religion of Rome and accepted and labeled as Christian, but it was not Christian. It is simply relabeled as Christian and used to help deceive people into the religion of sun worship.
Now Constantine conquered his opposition and assumed the leadership of the Roman Empire in the name of Tammuz, the high priest of the Sun God. And he worshipped the sun until the day of his death continuing to cast coins throughout this reign dedicated to Sol Invictus, the invincible Sun. Now Constantine realized that he had a problem on his hands. The so-called Christians were turning the beliefs in the empire upside down. And the more that were killed, the more were converted to that belief. So, that on many occasions the actual executioners were convicted and converted by the example of their victims.
And it was just impossible to control this new sect. So, Constantine did the one thing that is often done throughout history, “if you can’t beat them join them”. And he had a conference with Sylvester, Bishop of Rome and they reached a compromise. The Bishop of Rome would teach that the Emperor was not God but that he was the choice of God, the personal choice of God, that God backed him up, that God put him on the throne, and that anyone who disobeyed — who disobeys the emperor was disobeying God, and anyone who challenged the Emperor was challenging God, and that the Emperor was backed up and had his authority from God.
And as proof of that, he, the Bishop of Rome as high priest, would crown and anoint the Emperor thus demonstrating to people that the Emperor had the backing of God.
What was in this for the Bishop of Rome? Why he was made the Head of all the bishops, the head of the church, and his church was made the official religion of the empire. Now certain problems arose. If he was the official religious leader and the Head of the official religion of the empire, all the other religions wouldn’t like that idea. So, he had to convince them to join with him and to become part of the official religion.
How was this to be done? He went and he took their beliefs, their choice prized beliefs such as their annual festivals like the Saturnalia, which was the birthday of the Sun God. What the Bishop of Rome did was to simply re-label this the birthday of, the Son of God; and placed a Christian veneer upon it, relabeling this festival Christian, in this case Christmas. He did this with the other festivals as well such as the Bacchanalia and the Mayday and so on. These changes had to be justified amongst the Christian community already existing.
And how is that to be done? The bishops got together and they racked their brains and came up with the Primacy of Peter doctrine stating that Peter was given all authority from God regarding things on the earth to make whatever decisions they wanted, and what they were doing is in the best interests of the church, because it was bringing in millions of converts who weren’t really converted, but they were joining the church, officially becoming a part of the church. The church was becoming a force to be reckoned with within the empire, a power, and this end justified the means.
They took the “ends justifies the means” approach and used the Primacy of Peter heresy as the foundation. To make sure that the church and the Bishop of Rome would cooperate, Constantine called the Council of Nicea and there he commanded that all the bishops would now observe the venerable day of the invincible Sun and would no longer observe the Biblical Sabbath, which runs from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday on the grounds that it was Jewish. Constantine wanted the people to worship on the day of the sun. So, he passed an edict that all people would worship on the day of the invincible Sun. And this edict by the Emperor and the Bishop of Rome was to be enforced by the power of Rome, the armies and police of the Roman Empire.
And so it came about that, what was once the Christian church, which followed the teachings of Jesus Christ and obeyed the commandments of Almighty God, was perverted and seduced away from the teachings of God. Now the Primacy of Peter doctrine, which elevated the leader of the church above the word of God and empowered him to make any decision to bind anything or to loose anything, as he saw fit and for his own benefit, and the benefit of his institution and his organization. This resulted in the substitution of his own opinions, and the traditions of his Church; for the Word of God.
This exalted this man above God’s Word and set him up as judge of God’s word, and in so doing, by being a judge of what God said, he set himself up over God, he exalted himself above Almighty God. Now for these people things worked pretty well for the next few hundred years until a certain British King became more concerned with his own reproductive needs that he was above the authority of Rome. And he decided that he would make just as good a Pope as the Pope in Rome was, so he declared an English church with an English leader. He declared that the Crown head of England, the King or the Queen would be the Head of the Church of England, and that they would separate from the Vatican because the Vatican would not grant him the divorce he wanted.
This set in motion a series of wars between Catholics and Anglicans in Britain and also a series of reformers within the Roman church. Many heroic personalities began to teach in the Roman church about the need for justice and judgment and the weightier matters of the law, and that the authority of the leader of the church was being carried too far. Other people like Cromwell fought against the religious power of Kings [notably Charles 1 of England] to gain for us the advantages of religious freedom that we possess in our nations today.
While we have many legal freedoms today, there is still the matter of freedom of the mind, freedom of conscience, and freedom of spirit. The individual who believes that anyone can stand between themselves and God, and honestly believes that another human being can keep him out of God’s Kingdom, will be prevented by that idolatry from being in the resurrection to eternal life, and can consign him to the second death.
If someone really believes that another person is God’s gatekeeper, then the person that he believes in; has total complete ultimate power over us as a falsely supposed moral authority. Which is idolatry since ALL moral authority belongs only to Almighty God; for we shall be judged by every Word of God and only Almighty God will decide whether we are righteous or not. Only God will decide whether we may enter His Kingdom or not.
There is no mediator between man and God except Jesus Christ. There is no intercessor between man and God except Jesus Christ.
1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God [the Father], and one mediator between God [the Father] and men, the man Christ Jesus [The one who became Jesus Christ gave up his Godhood and as a physical man came and gave his life for us, after which he was resurrected to spirit and returned to God-hood as the ONLY Intercessor between God the Father and humanity.]; 2:6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
You know the Scriptures, you know these words, if you don’t, get a good concordance and look them up intercessor and mediator, there is none between man and God, only Jesus Christ.
Romans 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, for thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors for him that loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor death, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Consider he says, “Neither powers, nor principalities, nor things present nor things to come can separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”. The term powers and principalities refers to all authorities, and even to people claiming to be apostles and Popes and Kings; and none of them, none whatsoever can ever come between us and God and his Christ, unless we allow them to do so, unless we allow them to come between us and God, unless we choose to follow them without checking and testing whether they be of God and from God and whether their words are consistent with the Word of God.
No, Peter did not have the power to change God’s Word. And no man before or since has ever had such a prerogative. The Bible contains the laws of God, which are the means by which order will be maintained, the weak and innocent will be protected, and the means by which peaceful harmonious relationships between men, between each other, and between men and God will be maintained. The Holy Bible is the Constitution of the coming Kingdom of God. It is the basic law, the foundation upon which the Kingdom is built. No man has the right to try and tamper with that, has a right to decide to change that, has the right to decide for himself what must be bound and obeyed, and what may be ignored.
This is the basic law, the Constitution of the Kingdom of God. It is God, who is the king. It is his law and none of his subjects has the right to question that law or his authority because He is also our Creator, our Father. And the creation is never greater than the Creator, and the children are never greater than their father. Why then do people love to be dominated and controlled? Why then, as God said to Jeremiah, do the people love to have it so?
First, because they are taught that that is the way things should be. Second, because like the people of Israel in the days of Moses, they are afraid. They said, “Moses, you go and speak to God for us because we are very afraid”. And people are afraid today. They are afraid of making mistakes; they are afraid that they can’t understand, they are afraid, and they lack faith that God can lead them into the truth, that God’s Spirit will lead them into the truth. Yes of course mistakes will be made, but the righteous man gets back up and dusts himself off, and carries on with the journey into knowledge.
Do not ever be afraid to try and learn. If we were all afraid to try to walk as children, we would have never learned to walk. And the same is true spiritually speaking. If we are afraid to study, afraid to think, afraid to trust God, we will never develop and learn spiritual things. People want to be controlled. They want to be told what to do because they’re afraid, because they are taught to be that way, and because they are naturally involved in their own physical lives, and they’re spiritually lazy, and they don’t want to be bothered with checking things out, and studying and making the effort.
God is looking around for people who are willing to make the effort to live by every Word of God. And those are the people to whom He will give the gift of eternal life and bring into His Kingdom; People who care enough to try, people who care enough to make the effort.
Read the Parables of the Pounds and the Talents, remember the lessons there; that people who bury their talent, people who don’t try, people who don’t care, people who are content to be spoon-fed, and told what they should think and do, those people will have their pound, their talent taken away from them and given to somebody else who will do something with it, who will make an effort.
People just love to be told what to do, because that is the easy way. That is the way that requires a minimum of personal effort, and they figure they have it made if they just do what they are told. Well, it doesn’t work that way. To attain salvation man must do what God tells us to do, not what some man tells us!
And to find out what God says, we must make the effort to check it out, look it up, study, pray and learn, and not just rely on what some other person tells you; because human beings make mistakes. They really do. We all do.
Put your trust in God. Do not put your trust in men; and if you put your trust in God even though you yourself may make mistakes, God will lift you up, and He will help you, and you will make it right through to the very end.
For a thorough study into the Primacy of Peter: see our Articles 101 to 106 in our Sabbath Calendar Category on the Sovereignty of God!