THE ECUMENICAL MOVEMENT
The Ecumenical Movement is one of the most controversial subjects in this present hour.
What is the Ecumenical Movement?
The word 'ecumenical' comes from the Greek word 'oikoumene' which basically means 'this inhabited world'.
At present, there are two great bodies -- the World Council of Churches (W.C.C.) and the National Council of Churches (N.C.C.). The main aim of the Ecumenical Movement is to bring churches of all denominations and cults, and ultimately, all other religious organisations together as One Ecumenical Church or World Church. At the first Ecumenical Assembly held in Amsterdam in 1948, the motto 'ONE WORLD -- ONE CHURCH' was adopted. It is agreed that one of the major issues for the WCC to tackle is the relations between the churches and the organisations of all the other religions and ideologies. With regards to this issue, dialogues are being held among the different religions of the world. The Bible Prophecy of a Super Church is now being fulfilled.
THE COURTSHIP BETWEEN THE WCC AND THE ROMAN CATHOLICS
For years now, there is much courtship between the WCC and the Roman Catholics. "Roman Catholic bishops from around the world met in an Ecumenical Council at the Vatican from 1962-1965. They revised the Catholic liturgy, and have updated the church in several areas in an effort to bring the Protestants back into the fold. In the higher echelons of Catholicism, Protestants are no longer called 'heretics' but are referred to as 'separated brethren'. It should be noted that this procedure has not reached the grass roots level in some areas. Booklets are being distributed to Catholic laymen on 'ecumenical etiquette'. Each year million of leaflets, 'Week of Prayer for Christian Unity' are distributed. Catholics and Protestants are having joint communion services. They undertake joint projects for social activities, and even have joint folk-singing programmes. One of the biggest drives toward unity is the amalgamation of Catholic and Protestant seminaries. For the first time in history Roman Catholic churches are joining city church council... The leaders of World Council and the leaders of Rome are working together for a union of these two bodies. No fewer than 39 representatives of Protestant churches have been received by the Pope. The Archbishop of Canterbury was the first Anglican primate to visit a Pope in 400 years. Official Roman Catholic documents are beginning to use the term 'church' to describe Protestant churches. A Lutheran professor has urged all Protest- ants to reunite with Roman Catholicism, which he described as their 'ecclesiastical homeland'." (Quoted from The Ecumenical Movement by H.Duncan).
POPE -- HEAD OF THE SUPER-CHURCH
There is no doubt that the irresistible effort of the Ecumenical Movement to form a World Church will culminate in the acceptance of the Pope -- that man of sin, the son of perdition -- as its head. In 1972, Michael Ramsey, who "made ecclesiastical history by preaching in Manhattan's Roman Catholic St.Patrick's Cathedral at a service attended by Terence Cardinal Cooke and Archbishop Iakovos of the Greek Church of North and South America" (TIME Feb.,7), said, "I can foresee the day when all Christians might accept the Pope as Presiding Bishop. Perspectives change, and we must give the bag a good shake and see what happens."
Even notable and influential churchmen speak of it with great favour. The Evangelist Billy Graham was quoted in a German newspaper as saying, "that it would be a great tragedy if the ecumenical policies of the late Pope John were reversed. 'Pope John brought an entirely new era to the world. It would be a great tragedy if the cardinals elect a pope who would react against the policies of Pope John and bring back the walls between the Christian faiths'." With such assurance, we are going to see (or have already seen) an endless procession of sincere people, their minds befogged with the spirit of delusion, join the wedding procession to union with Rome. The only ones who will escape this delusion will be those in whom is the mind of the Lord Jesus Christ -- The Word of God.
ROMANISM, DENOMINATIONALISM, ECUMENISM, CHARISMATICISM
What has God said about this One World Church System? Plenty, and much of which is recorded in the Book of Revelation. Bible-believing Christians will agree with me that we are living in the last of the Seven Church Ages mentioned in the first three chapters of the Book of Revelation. We are living in the Laodicean Age -- a period when the Church and its works are totally lukewarm being neither hot nor cold. Revelation chapter 17 mentions a mysterious woman called "MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS of THE EARTH". She is none other than the SYSTEM of the Roman Catholic Church which has been handed down through each and every Church Age to every denominational church and which is now magnified as the One World Church. Yes, Mama Rome, the Great Mother Harlot, and her harlot 'daughters' (organized denominational churches) are now joined together in an unholy union. No doubt, it is a Super Church which is rich in material wealth but poor in spiritual Truth, and dying spiritually. God said that she is wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked (Rev.3:14-18), and she doesn't even know it!
Ecumenism (together with Charismaticism) is Satan's master-plan of deception through which He is trying to deceive the whole world in this climatic period (Rev.12:9).
BIBLE-BELIEVING CHRISTIANS SHOULD NOT SUPPORT THE ECUMENICAL MOVEMENT
There are reasons why True Believers of Christ should not support the Ecumenical Movement or be associated with it in any way.
The Ecumenical Movement is built on the wrong premise which misleads sincere Christians into a counterfeit 'unity'. Emphatically, this is certainly not the unity of the Spirit. It is not the spiritual oneness of the Body of Christ which our Saviour had prayed for. The Ecumenical Movement is an unholy organisational union of a bunch of ignoramuses! The True Church is composed of only the born-again, Blood- washed Christians whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life.
INFALLIBLE WORD OF GOD REJECTED
For the sake of charity and unity the Ecumenical Movement rejected THE HOLY BIBLE as the Infallible Word of God and has published its own edition of THE BIBLE which is sanctioned by Rome. It has four parallel columns showing the reader the similarities and differences in the interpretations of the four major denominations of the Ecumenical Movement -- Roman Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox (Eastern Christian) and Jewish. The edition has grossly distorted the Truth by taking away from, and adding to, the Inspired Word of God. As Martin Luther had said, "Cursed be that love and unity for whose sake the Word of God must be put to stake!" Bishop Latimer, who died at the stake for his faith in Christ, said, "Unity must be according to God's Holy Word, or else it were better war than peace. We ought never to regard unity so much that we forsake God's Word for her sake." But, even then, we still find many Bible-believing Christians in, or associating with, the Movement.
The Ecumenical Movement and many Christians have a wrong concept of the Church. They are confused about the Church of God and the Kingdom of God. They believe that we should strive to set up the Kingdom of God on the earth. The Bible does not teach this. Rather, it has revealed to us that this age will end in apostasy (2 Thess.2:3). The Apostle Peter tells us that in the last days there will be false teachers who will bring in damnable heresies. Peter says that many will follow the pernicious ways of these false teachers. In other words he is not referring to the false doctrines or teachings of Christian cults, or churches, who may attract their tens of thousands, but rather to the apostates who go about deceiving millions of people. These false teachers are not only guilty of teaching wrong doctrines but are also guilty of denying the Lord Jesus Whom they claim to believe. They are so theologically unsound that they even deny the Virgin Birth of Christ, His Vicarious Death and Atonement, His Resurrection and Ascension, His Second Coming and almost all the fundamental truths that are taught in the Bible. It is deplorable that many sincere Christians do not realise the extent to which these false teachers have infiltrated and control their own denominations (2 Pet.2:1,2).
Today, in most of the churches, we see plenty of form and ceremony -- religiously pompous -- singing, shouting, dancing, speaking in tongues, etc., but none of the Apostolic teachings and the power of the Truth. The Bible does not encourage the Believer to stay and try to improve such situation in his church, but It warns him in no uncertain terms to turn away from it (2 Tim.3:1-5).
We often hear people say that it does not matter what we believe as long as we are sincere in what we believe. What folly! What we believe makes us what we are! And the Ecumenical Movement is exactly what it is -- "the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird"! It tolerates those who encourage immorality! Many ministers of the WCC defend homosexuality and encourage pre-marital sex as was manifested at Uppsala, Sweden in 1968. Beside this carnal sin, their unholy alliance with the Roman Catholic church, which promulgates countless erroneous doctrines, is enough to make one sick! Even the evangelicals has compromised and fellowshipped with that which God has cursed!
The Ecumenical Movement opposes and condemns missionary activities as outmoded ideas of evangelism. It is also soft on Communism. This has been confirmed many times by investigating agencies of the United States government.
WARNING! CHECK YOURSELF AND YOUR CHURCH!
Dear Christian friend, if you believe that Jesus Christ was God incarnate, born of a virgin, died a vicarious death on the Cross for you and that you are cleansed and pardoned through His shed Blood, that He arose on the third day, ascended to Heaven, and is coming again as He promised, and that you are "saved by grace through faith....the gift of God, not of work", then "COME OUT OF HER...." and have no dealing whatsoever in an organization (even your denomination) which denies these fundamental truths!
We are now in the final hours of the age of grace. This is no time for ecumenical association in unholy compromise! Compromise dulls the spiritual vision. Compromise is an affront to a Holy and Righteous Saviour. THIS IS A TIME FOR TOTAL SEPARATION FROM UNBELIEF!!!
Find out for yourself whether your church -- your denomination -- is affiliated with the NCC and/or the WCC. If so, the leaders are blind and apostate! God does not revive apostasy; He judges it! And if you knowingly and wilfully remain in apostasy, you would never make it in the 'Rapture' of the saints! Return to the Word! Back to the Faith of the Apostolic Fathers!
These are strong words, yes, but God's Word is even stronger. He calls for TOTAL SEPARATION from Mystery, Babylon the Great, and all that she represents -- "COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM and be ye SEPARATE, saith the Lord, and TOUCH NOT THE UNCLEAN THING" -- 2 Cor.6:17. "COME OUT OF HER, My People, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues" -- Rev.18:4. Yes, contend for the Faith that was once delivered unto the saints of God!
[Read Revelation 17 & 18; 2 John 9-11; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; 2 Timothy 3:13-14; 1 Timothy 6:3-5.]