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    September 5, 1895

    “Rome Pagan and Papal” The Present Truth 11, 36, pp. 565-567.



    “ROME never changes.” This is the oft-repeated boast of the Papacy, and it is true. It is true, too, in a much larger sense than many realise, even of those who believe the proposition.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.1

    In its spirit, in its disposition, in its essential nature and characteristics, Rome is the same to-day that it was two hundred or five hundred years before Christ. Between Rome’s beginning and our day, between 753 B.C. and 1894 A.D., she has appeared in different outward forms, she has taken on different phases, such as the kingly, the republican, the imperial, and the papal, but it has been Rome all the time—Rome in spirit, in nature, and in essential characteristics.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.2


    THERE is no world-power that occupies so large a place in the Bible as does Rome. Rome, from its rise in ancient time and in its pagan form, through all its career, its merging into the papal form, and on to its impending ruin in our own day, is traced in all its workings, and is marked in its every essential feature, by the pen of inspiration. And it is Rome all the time and always the same—cunning, crafty, insinuating, arrogant, violent, persecuting and bloody—always actuated by the same spirit and pursuing steadily the same policy. So constant, so persistent, and so characteristic is this police, that it is singled out in the Scripture and distinctly defined as “his policy.”PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.3

    In the eighth chapter of Daniel there is a prophecy of the careers of Media and Persia, of Grecia under Alexander, and then under Alexander’s successors, and of the power that should succeed these which by every evidence of Scripture and history, is demonstrated to be Rome only. And in that place it is briefly but powerfully sketched thus:—PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.4

    And in the latter time of their [Alexander’s successors’] kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many; he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.5

    Thus it is distinctly declared that “through his policy also, he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand,” “and by peace shall destroy many.” To know what this “policy” is, is to know Rome from beginning to end. To understand the workings of this “policy,” is to understand the workings of Rome so well, even to-day, that she can never deceive nor get any advantage of him who understands it.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.6


    IN Rollin’s ancient history there is an analysis of this Romish policy and its workings in the progress of Rome to power and dominion over all the ancient nations. And so entirely is this “his policy” ever, that Rollin’s analysis of it as it was manifested in ancient times is as perfectly descriptive of Rome’s policy and its workings to-day as it is of it in ancient days. Here are the historian’s words:—PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.7

    The reader begins to discover, in the events related, one of the principal characteristics of the Romans, which will soon determine the fate of all the States of Greece, and produce an almost general change in the universe; I mean a spirit of sovereignty and dominion. This characteristic does not display itself at first in its full extent; it reveals itself only by degrees; and it is only by insensible progressions, which at the same time are rapid enough, that it is carried at last to its greatest height.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.8

    It must be confessed, that this people, on certain occasions, show such a moderation and disinterestedness, which from a superficial view seems to exceed everything we meet with in history, and which we feel it incumbent on us to praise.... But if we penetrate ever so little beyond this glaring outside, we soon perceive that this specious moderation of the Romans was entirely founded on a profound policy; wise, indeed, and prudent, according to the ordinary rules of government, but at the same time very remote from that noble disinterestedness so highly extolled on the present occasion.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.9

    Nothing could be more gentle and equitable than the conduct of the Romans in the beginning. They acted with the utmost moderation toward such States and nations as addressed them for protection. They succoured them against their enemies, took the utmost pains in terminating their differences and in suppressing all commotions which arose amongst them, and did not demand the least recompense from their allies for all these services. By this means their authority gained strength daily, and prepared the nations for entire subjection.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.10

    Under pretense of offering them their good offices, of entering into their interests, and of reconciling them, the Romans rendered themselves the sovereign arbiters of those whom they had restored to liberty, and whom they now considered, in some measure, as their freedmen. They used to depute commissioners to them, to inquire into their complaints, to weigh and examine the reasons on both sides, and to decide their quarrels; but when the articles were of such a nature that there was no possibility of reconciling them on the spot, they invited them to send their deputies to Rome. But afterwards they used, with plenary authority, to summon those who refused to come to an agreement, obliged them to plead their cause before the Senate, and even to appear in person there. From arbiters and mediators, being become supreme judges, they soon assumed a magisterial tone, looked upon their decrees as irrevocable decisions, were greatly offended when the most implicit obedience was not paid to them, and gave the name of rebellion to a second resistance. Thus there arose, in the Roman Senate, a tribunal which judged all nations and kings, and from which there was no appeal.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 565.11

    We have no room to doubt that Providence had decreed to the Romans the sovereignty of the world, and the Scriptures had prophesied their future grandeur; but they were strangers to those Divine oracles, and besides, the bare prediction of their conquests was no justification of their conduct. Although it is difficult to affirm, and still more so to prove, that this people had from the first formed a plan in order to conquer and subject all nations, it can not be denied but that if we examine their whole conduct attentively, it will appear that they acted as if they had a foreknowledge of this; and that a kind of instinct had determined them to conform to it in all things.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 566.1

    But, be this as it may, we see, by the event, to what this so much boasted lenity and moderation of the Romans was confined. Enemies to the liberty of all nations, having the utmost contempt for kings and monarchy, looking upon the whole universe as their prey, they grasped, with insatiable ambition, the conquests of the whole world; they seized indiscriminately all provinces and kingdoms, and extended their empire over all nations; in a word, they prescribed no other limits to their vast projects than those which deserts and seas made it impossible to pass.—Book XVIII., under “Reflections on the Conduct of the Romans.”PTUK September 5, 1895, page 566.2


    THIS statement of Rome’s policy and its workings is as true and as appropriate in the case of the Romans Church and the nations to-day, as it is in the case of the Roman State and the Grecian Republics in all time. It describes the policy of Leo XIII. and the ultimate purpose of it toward the governments and peoples of the world; toward the workingmen; as the self-appointed intermediary between capital and labour; and the would-be world’s arbiter, to-day. Nor is the identity of this policy in Rome to-day, and in Rome of old, denied by the Papacy. In fact, it is asserted by the Papacy, and the continuance of this policy from ancient Rome is the acknowledged inspiration of modern Rome.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 566.3

    When Imperial Rome was falling to ruins under the violent inroads of the barbarians of the North, the spirit and policy of Rome not only survived but was deepened and perfected in papal Rome. And this spirit and policy were consciously and intentionally continued by the Popes of the time and were conscientiously received and diligently cultivated by each succeeding Pope.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 566.4

    Such was the heritage bequeathed to Leo “the Great,” (A. D. 440-451) by his predecessors, and the arrogance of his own native disposition, with the grand opportunities which offered during his long rule, added to it a thousandfold. “All that survived of Rome,” says Milman, “of her unbounded ambition, her inflexible perseverance, her dignity in defeat, her haughtiness of language, her belief in her own eternity, and in her indefeasible title to universal dominion, her respect for traditionary and written law, and of unchangeable custom, might seem concentrated in him alone.” At the very moment of his election he was absent in Gaul on a mission as mediator to reconcile a dispute between two of the principal men of the empire. He succeeded in his mission, and was hailed as “the Angel of Peace,” and the “Deliverer of the Empire.” In a sermon, he showed what his ambition embraced. He portrayed the powers and glories of the former Rome as they were reproduced in Catholic Rome. The conquests and universal sway of heathen Rome were but the promise of the conquests and universal sway of Catholic Rome. Romulus and Remus were but the precursors of Peter and Paul. Rome of former days had by her armies conquered the earth and sea: now again, by the see of the holy blessed Peter as head of the world, Rome through her divine religion would dominate the earth. (Milman.)PTUK September 5, 1895, page 566.5

    This is Rome; Rome always, and Rome ever the same. This is “his policy”—craft and hypocrisy, hypocrisy and craft, always employed to feed an insatiable ambition for universal dominion. “Rome never changes,” that is true. In “policy,” in spirit, in working, in essential nature, it never has changed and it never can change. In all this, Rome is just as bad as it can be, and yet thinks itself better than God, and therefore how would it be possible to change? No, Rome never changes,—That is the truth. She never can change,—And that is the truth.PTUK September 5, 1895, page 567.1

    A. T. JONES.

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