As of January 1, most of the nations of Europe have bound themselves together in a single economy under a single currency, the euro. For several months, leaders of the European Union (EU) have been pushing for the next phase: unification on the political and military level.
And for years the pope has been reminding the leaders that Europe needs to get back to its "Christian roots." Of course, the pope's brand of "Christian" has little to do with biblical Christianity but is much about power over political leaders.
For example, British Prime Minister Tony Blair recently tasted the power of Rome as he attempted to receive communion at a mass and the Cardinal in charge "politely" asked him not to receive it. This was because Blair claims to be Anglican.
However, his wife is Roman Catholic and he frequently attends mass with her. He also has the distinction of being the first British Prime Minister to watch his baby being baptized by a Catholic priest. Their children attend Catholic schools. There is some speculation that he may eventually convert to Catholicism.
Besides in his family, Blair has brought other Roman Catholics into positions of influence around him. The most recent was the appointment of John Battle to be Blair's personal envoy among the Christian denominations and faith groups. Battle once studied to be a Catholic priest and is a practicing Roman Catholic.
The fact that Blair would even attempt to receive the blasphemous Roman eucharist is an affront to British - and protestant - history. It was in England where the King James Bible in the common language was born and its readers turned back the papists that held the death grip on the rest of Europe.
Ever since the Protestant Reformation, the Vatican has made repeated attempts to reestablish its rule over Europe. In the past it has tried to ride the backs of dictators such as Hitler. Today, the pope is taking a more subtle approach: promote economic and political unity and then step in as the dominant spiritual force. In this way the Vatican can fulfill Revelation 17:18 to continue its role as ruler of the kings of the earth and the great spiritual whore that seduces kingdoms (Rev 17:1-2).
Dave Hunt has described Rome's history in light of Bible prophecy in his book A Woman Rides the Beast. He writes that,
"Though John Paul II lacks the power to enforce such brutal claims today [of the inquisition], his church still retains the dogmas which authorize him to do so. And the practical effects of his power are no less than those of his predecessors, though exercised quietly behind the scenes... Ambassadors come to the Vatican from every major country, including the United States, not out of mere courtesy but because the pope is the most powerful ruler on earth today."
When Rome's agents under English Queen (Bloody) Mary burned Ridley and Latimer at the stake for preaching salvation by grace through faith, Latimer cried out to Ridley, "Be of good courage, Master Ridley, and play the man. We shall this day, by God's grace, light such a candle in England as I trust will never be put out!"
Today, nearly 500 years later, Latimer would be horrified that that candle of freedom from popery is in danger of being snuffed out - and nobody seems to care.
If Britain's resistance to popery is broken, the rest of Europe will be much easier for the Vatican to conquer.