By Jonathan Ekene Ifeanyi
English atheistic philosopher John Locke is rightly
considered to be the Father of Modern Democracy.
2015 is already here and Catholics, just like other Nigerians, are warming up, getting ready to vote candidates of their choices into different elective positions—in fact, others even warming up to contest! But what actually does our faith as Catholics teach us about modern democracy? Can a Catholic, practising his faith, really participate in our type of democracy and still remains a Catholic?
Here, as briefly as possible, I will try to answer these questions strictly from Catholic perspective.
In my newspaper article entitled “At Last, Buhari Attacked by Jonathan’s Men!” I disagreed completely with those advocating for a “dialogue” with Boko Haram members, arguing that Islam, just like all the ancient religions, including Christianity, is simply anti-democracy, that is, democracy as understood in the modern world. Shekau has made it very clear that he is fighting modern democracy which he sees as evil, I wrote. As he puts it, “The concept of the government of the people, by the people and for the people must be replaced with government of Allah, by Allah, and for Allah.” I stated that some Muslims who have argued that Islam does not support Shekau’s position on democracy are simply mere comedians. Modern democracy, it must be noted, unlike the type practised in ancient Greece, was actually propounded by ardent enemies of religion, many of whom were atheists—no true Muslim can tolerate this.
The origin of modern democracy is simply the French Revolution, particularly the French Freemasonic Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789, which affirmed the so-called principles of civil liberty and of equality before the law. That is why it is simply alien to Islam and to all the ancient religions. By this I am not trying to suggest that Islam and Christianity have anything in common, however.
I quoted Pope Leo XIII who, countering the advocates of modern democracy, wrote the following in his June 29, 1881 encyclical letter entitled “Diuturnum Illud” (On Government Authority):
“Indeed, very many men of recent times, walking in the footsteps of those who in former ages assumed to themselves the name of philosophers, say that all power comes from the people; so that those who exercise it in the State do so not as their own, but as delegated to them by the people, and that, by this rule, it can be revoked by the will of the very people by whom it was delegated. But from these, Catholics dissent, who affirm that the right to rule is from God, as from a natural and necessary principle.”
Put simply, this was—and still is for traditional Catholics—the position of the Catholic Church with regards to government authority until the Second Vatican Council, held in the 1960s, a Council which was evidently hijacked by the Church’s bitter enemies and hence which brought unimaginable changes to the Catholic world. Since then, the world has witnessed wonders, priest-politicians, bishop-politicians, cardinal-politicians and even, “pope”-politicians!
What is democracy? First, it is necessary to understand exactly what the word “democracy” means. Strictly speaking, democracy means “government by the people”. It is in this political sense that it is generally used. However, it possesses a secondary meaning, i.e. “movement of benevolence for the benefit of the people.” This has no political implication, it only denotes a social awareness of the needs of the people. It could also be found in, say, an absolute Monarchy (Cf. Pius XII, 1944 Christmas message). But it would be more aptly named “demophily” (love for the people). It is in this latter sense that Pope Leo XIII and Pope Pius XII used the word “democracy” in their Encyclicals. In view of this, these Encyclicals cannot be cited to justify political democracy. To do so would be to disregard the Popes’ express teaching: “Many excellent men find the term Christian Democracy objectionable. They hold it to be very ambiguous and for this reason open to two objections. It seems by implication to covertly favour popular government, and to disparage other methods of political administration… Under the shadow of its name, there might easily lurk a design to attack all legitimate power either civil or sacred… It would be a crime to distort this name of Christian Democracy to politics, for although Democracy implies popular government, in its present application it is so to be employed that, removing from it all political significance, it is to mean nothing else than a benevolent and Christian movement in behalf of the people… This is what Catholics are to think on this matter.” (Pope Leo XIII, Graves de Communi).
Democracy is not a new thing; it is inherited from ancient Greece and Rome. Some city-states in the Middle Ages had democratic constitutions and many Christian heresies were inspired by a misguided democratic outlook. It finally found its way into England where it began to acquire its modern form. French philosophers brought it back from England in the 18th century and perfected its modern form, with special emphasis on emancipation from all authority which is not based on popular will, especially religious authority. During the Napoleonic wars, it spread from France all over Europe, and eventually throughout the world through colonisation. The English and American type of democracy was somewhat different from that practised on the continent of Europe, but it became increasingly influenced by the continental forms.
Traditional democracy was regarded as being one possible way, among many others, of designating leaders. It was seldom regarded as self-sufficient, and never as an exclusive political system. In traditional democracy, the people designated leaders but did not formulate policies, leaving that to their leaders, in whom they placed all their trust. Kings, magistrates, even Bishops, have been elected in this way. But, once elected, they had effective powers; they were real leaders, not merely representatives of the people. A leader takes initiatives and assumes responsibilities, whilst a representative, strictly speaking, takes no decision of his own, being only the spokesman of the people or the party. Modern democracy, on the other hand, is regarded as being the only legitimate way to designate leaders! It claims to be self-sufficient, rejects all other political systems as being contrary to justice, and gives the people, or political parties, the “right” to dictate policies. It is no longer exclusively a system of designation which, owing to circumstances peculiar to times and places, may be preferred to other systems; it is an exclusive regime, claiming absolute rights. Any suggestion of its possible suppression is regarded as absurd and contrary to basic human justice. Traditional democracy was a revocable right, partly or fully granted—or withdrawn, according to the needs of the moment; but modern democracy is regarded as an inalienable right, the only fountainhead of political justice, lawfulness, and authority.
In its modern form, democracy is absolute. Any law which is not based on popular will is regarded as tyrannical, and any law based on popular will can never be suspected of being tyrannical. The possible “tyranny of the masses” is a concept quite alien to modern democratic thinking. Conversely, the word democracy has become a synonym of freedom, whilst in fact, tyranny or freedom can indifferently be found or not found in a democracy. Modern democracy has become an end in itself, a yardstick of truth and goodness, a mystique, a superstition. It is “a criterion for judgments, a theory of knowledge, a method, a principle, an aim, an ideal, a way of life, a matter of faith.” (C. B. Carson) “The people” become the sole judge of what is good and bad, just or unjust. Natural Law, and especially Divine Law, have no place in the modern concept of democracy—thus in Nigeria, for instance, even though Christianity and Islam are the major religions practised by all, it is simply forbidden to discuss the doctrines of these religions publicly—for instance, to teach publicly that Catholicism is the only true religion in the world. And what does this really mean? It simply means that under democracy it is not permissible to talk about God publicly. And why? Because modern democracy was not born in the minds of God-fearing men, but in the minds of so-called philosophers who had already abjured their Christian faith, and rejected Christian Philosophy. It follows that many tenets of modern democracy are contrary to Christian doctrine, a thing which the Popes before Vatican II had repeatedly stressed. In all modern democracies, without exceptions, Christian principles are continually flouted, and Christian values superseded by man-made ideas.
St. Thomas Aquinas stated that “people have the right to choose their rulers,” and he also said that: “rulers can be chosen from the people,” but he never contemplated majority rule. He did not see democracy as a political creed or as a self-sufficient and complete system finding in itself justification for any sort of legislation, but rather as a set of institutions within a monarchical-hierarchical structure. People have, indeed, the right to choose their rulers because if it were not so, they might be ruled against their own wishes. People should also be able to provide rulers from among themselves, and not choose them only from an upper class, because it is from the people, in the final analysis, that the life of the nation renews itself. St. Thomas’ teaching is therefore eminently wise, and he made it clear that: “such was the form of government established by Divine Law. For this is the best form of polity, being partly Kingdom, since there is one head of all; partly aristocracy, in so far as a number of persons are set in authority; partly democracy, i.e. government by the people, in so far as the rulers can be chosen from the people, and the people have the right to choose their rulers.”
St. Thomas gives a number of biblical references which make it clear that authority is not exercised by the people. The people only designate rulers, but do not impose them; for the final appointment of rulers designated by the people rests with the superior authority. This democratic procedure which has been in various ways explicated in the Papal Encyclicals, is a far cry from modern ideas of popular sovereignty. “Let me have from among you wise and understanding men, and such whose conversation is approved among your tribes, that I may appoint them your rulers.” (Deuteronomy, Ch. 1, Ver. 13) A similar reference can be found in Exodus 18:25, which shows that Moses himself, as the supreme ruler of the Jews, appointed the lesser rulers designated by the people. Modern Popes, in particular Pius IX, Leo XIII, St. Pius X and Pius XII, have re-asserted that authority comes from above, that is, from God, and is handed down rather than ascending from the people. The people only designate leaders. Vatican II popes who teach otherwise are manifestly impostors masquerading as popes, period!
Our modern type of democracy—as well as the so-called Christian Democracy—is just a dream. The City of God cannot be built but in a Monarchical order because, “such was the form of government established by divine law. For Moses and his successors governed the people in such a way that each of them was ruler over all; so that there was a kind of kingdom.” (“Summa”, Part I, 2, a 105, a.l.)
Man, contrary to modern Freemasonic doctrines, is not really free. Modern democracy says he is. In a sense this is true, but Man is free-thinking and responsible in essence. He is free because God gave him free-will. He is thinking because God gave him an intellect capable of dealing with abstract ideas contrary to animals which can think only about concrete realities. He is responsible as a consequence of his freedom and mental faculties. But these three qualities are only potentialities. In actual fact, the average man is anything but free, thinking and responsible. It is indispensable to differentiate between the Absolute (or Essential) and the Contingent (or Accidental). Failure to do so is at the root of many dangerous fallacies. A political system (contingent by necessity) cannot be built on the absolute premises of man’s freedom, intelligence and responsibleness. Man is not wholly free because he is often a slave to his passions. Being the slave of his passions, he cannot be fully responsible. Being clouded by emotions, his judgment cannot be wholly reliable. A system which gives sovereignty to the least thinking and responsible members of the community is bound to be the least desirable. “It would be vain to think that their (the enlightened men’s) sage judgment … will be generally accepted by public opinion, or even by the majority of men,” said Pope Pius XII in his 1944 Christmas Message. “Human reason is (not) the sole arbiter of truth and falsehood, and of good and evil,” said Pope Pius IX in his Maxima Quidem. It follows that the people must be guided and not be the guide. According to St. Pius X (in the Sillon) “Man will be a man worthy of the name only when he has acquired a strong, enlightened, and autonomous consciousness, able to do without a master, obeying only himself, and able to take on and bear without erring the most demanding responsibilities.”
What then is true freedom, from the Christian perspective? Used loosely, words can be misleading. It is important to note that freedom can have two different meanings. In the Christian sense freedom is the faculty to choose between different courses of action; this is free-will, as opposed to the mechanistic determinism of inert matter, or the instinctive automatism of animals. But the free-will of man is morally bound by certain unchangeable laws of divine origin. Free-will, is in fact, the freedom to choose between obedience and revolt; our duty is evidently to choose obedience to God’s authority. That is why Pope Pius XII, commenting on the trilogy “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity,” said that freedom was a duty: “What a spectacle is that of a democratic State left to the whims of the masses! Liberty, which is really a duty of the individual, becomes a tyrannous claim of freedom to give free rein to one’s impulses and appetites at whatever cost or detriment to others.” (Pius XII—Christmas 1944) In this allocution on democracy, which was widely misunderstood, Pope Pius XII also explained what the freedom of the citizens of the modern state should be: “They (the citizens) shall have full freedom to set forth their own views of the duties and sacrifices imposed upon them.” Duties and sacrifices, the Pope said; but modern democracy insists on rights and privileges … To set forth views the Pope also said; but modern democracy holds that the citizens have the right to dictate their views … These are the significant differences. There is still a deeper implication in this question of freedom: if freedom of choice really implies obedience to the moral law, and if obedience to the moral law gives true freedom, it follows that the alternative, i.e. revolt, can only result in tyranny. Indeed, the Angelic Hierarchy is perfectly free because Angels are perfectly obedient to God, their King and Father. Their voluntary obedience gives them freedom. Compulsion arises only when perfect obedience is lacking. But modern democracy opposes freedom to obedience. What it calls freedom is, in fact, a revolt. Having chosen revolt, it can only find tyranny. This is the deeper reason why modern democracy evolves into Socialism: the element of compulsion inherent in Socialism is rendered necessary by lack of voluntary obedience, (to take but one example, nationalisations may be necessary because Capitalists, who are actuated by greed, fail to observe voluntarily certain moral principles). Christian freedom, therefore, is the factual faculty to choose between different courses of action, but not the moral liberty to do so. In the liberal sense, freedom is a complete emancipation from moral restraint, a refusal to recognise any superior law, a claim that man is bound only by the laws he himself makes. Such a belief can have far-reaching consequences, and if the western democracies have not yet reached a stage of complete anarchy, this is because the peoples of the West are still influenced by their Christian tradition. But the fact remains that such a concept of freedom is a revolt against the laws made by God, a revolt against God Himself. Since modern democracy is rooted in Liberalism, it is also a revolt against God. The divorce laws are a case in point. Like all other man-made laws they can be changed according to the whims of Man, by way of suffrage, until the sacredness of marriage has been completely destroyed. In other fields, business in particular, we have seen that this complete freedom can sometimes be broken by arbitrary measures such as nationalisations, and, thus, freedom ends in tyranny. Considering now the deeper implication as we have done in the case of the Christian concept of freedom, we find again that freedom, in the liberal sense, being essentially a revolt, ends in tyranny through quite a different process too: obedience to God is true freedom; revolt against God is tyranny. How can this come about? When all superior laws are rejected, freedom becomes essentially egoistic. It is the freedom of instincts, that of animals, and, eventually, the complete subjection of self to inner urgings. Since desires can never be satisfied, this tyranny knows no limits. Animals, of course, are not subjected to this tyranny, because their instincts exist only in relation to their real needs. But Man, as a thinking animal, has imagination; his inner urgings are imaginary as well as instinctive. That is what the promoters of liberal ideas failed to realise in their enthusiasm for the animal state: “Animals have the natural advantage over us of their independence … in that natural state enjoyed by untamed quadrupeds, birds, and reptiles, man would be as happy as they”, said Voltaire.
Today we see “Catholics” the world over—with the backing of Vatican II popes—celebrating the so-called Separation of Church and State, a “separation” which is simply iniquitous and disastrous. It is a step backwards which can only have the direst consequences on the future of civilisation. The State must draw its strength from the Church. A State separated from the Church is like a man separated from God. “The State cannot be built unless the Church lays the foundations and supervises the work … You cannot build a society without God,” said St. Pius X in “Our Apostolic Mandate.” As early as in the 18th century, Pope Pius VI, in “Caritas Quae”, spoke of “the fury of those called the Tiers Etat … (the authors) of that baleful constitution separated and cut off from the Catholic Religion.” In “Quanta Cura” Pope Pius IX spoke of “the false and perverse opinions (which wanted) to abolish that mutual co-operation and agreement of counsels between the Priesthood and Governments.” In “Ad Apostolicae” he said that it was an error to believe that: “In the case of conflicting laws the civil law should prevail (over that of the Church).” And in “Acerbissimum”, he explicitly condemned the opinion that: “the Church ought to be separated from the State, and the State from the Church.”
Today, however, many “liberal” or “progressive” “Catholics” hold such views, seemingly unaware that when the civil law prevails, the divine law is more and more encroached upon by an inevitable, irresistible and gradual process. Basic human liberties are then lost in the name of “freedom.” Let us not forget that Communists, too, speak of “freedom.” When they believe that they are free from religious “superstition”, they are not necessarily less in earnest than the modern Democrat of the West who is convinced that it is a great blessing to be free from the “interference of the Church” in all domains of life, and in education in particular. The state of the world today is conclusive proof that the Popes were right. No lasting improvement will ever be secured in national and international affairs unless Church and State are united again. Vatican II in “Gaudium et Spes” stresses the juridical autonomy of Church and State (which is not denied in the above excerpts), and ignores the moral obligation of the State to follow the Church’s teachings (which is emphasised above). Vatican II does speak of “co-operation between Church and State”, but apparently on an equal footing, as if the Church has as much to learn from the State in order to run her affairs, as the State has to learn from her in order to run its own affairs. This is a far cry from the “supervision” advocated by St. Pius X. In many ways, the process of “supervision” has been reversed. Take education; at first all schools were run by the Church—which was quite proper since Truth comes from God and cannot be divorced from the Word of God. But the victory of Masonic and liberal ideas in general, the rise of agnostics and atheists to power, produced a new situation: the State set up its own system of education. Today, the State supervises Catholic Education! This, of course, is intolerable; and there is no doubt that it would not have succeeded at all if the Catholic Hierarchy had simply refused to comply with the Law. Indeed, no government can afford to lose the Catholic vote, and if a particular government were foolish enough to do so for the sake of its sectarian principles the opposition would immediately grasp the opportunity and profess a contrary policy. In time, both parties would recognise the right of the Church to be completely independent, for party platforms do change from generation to generation—and even from decade to decade.
So then, to the question: “can Catholics participate in today’s democratic government?” The answer is simply NO. Catholics must not participate in today’s atheistic democratic government because its principles run counter to the doctrines of our holy religion. But this does not mean that we should cease playing our roles as citizens in a country where atheistic democracy is being practiced—like paying of tax, etc. Our attitude as Catholics should rather be like that of the early Christians who were faithful in performing perfectly and promptly whatever they were commanded which was not opposed to their religion, and who, in this regard, were faithful even to the point of shedding their blood in battle. “Christian soldiers,” Augustine writes, “served an infidel emperor. When the issue of Christ was raised, they acknowledged no one but the One who is in heaven. They distinguished the eternal Lord from the temporal lord, but were also subject to the temporal lord for the sake of the eternal Lord” (in psalt. 124, n.7). Apart from playing our roles as good citizens, the only other help we can offer to the evil system is a constructive criticism.
I do not need to say much on how—in countries under democratic governments—the principles of modern atheistic democracy make it simply impossible for Catholics to practise their faith. First, among numerous dichotomies, Catholicism teaches that a political leader must be chosen by God—through different human methods—and therefore must be accountable to God. Atheistic democracy, on the contrary, holds that “the people,” and not God, have a “right” to vote in their own leaders who would govern them according to what they want and not what God wants. Again, Catholicism teaches that the rights of man are derived from his duties towards God. Atheistic democracy, on the contrary, turns men and women into “gods” and “goddesses” by teaching that every man or woman in the State has a “right” to live his or her life the way he or she pleases. Again, Catholicism teaches that religion must rule every aspect of our lives, including the government itself. Atheistic democracy holds that religion must remain a private matter and must have nothing to do with the government. Catholicism teaches that God is one and that this one God can only with certainty be sought and found in the one true religion, that is, in Catholicism. Atheistic democracy makes mockery of this very idea with its relativism, that is, the doctrine which maintains that there are truths and values, but denies that they are absolute, and which holds that one man’s opinion—whether religious or otherwise—is as good as another’s. Worst of all, atheistic democracy prepares the way to hell for all men and women in the State by teaching that every man or woman is free to profess any religion he or she chooses to profess. This is simply terrible, yet, that is the reality in a country like the United States or Nigeria. I need not say much on the Church’s teaching in this regard, but to quote the following writing of a wise pontiff, Pope Leo XIII (his Libertas Praestantissimum):
“…the growth of liberty ascribed to our age must be considered apart in its various details. And, first, let us examine that liberty in individuals which is so opposed to the virtue of religion, namely, the liberty of worship, as it is called. This is based on the principle that every man is free to profess as he may choose any religion or none.
“But, assuredly, of all the duties which man has to fulfill, that, without doubt, is the chiefest and holiest which commands him to worship God with devotion and piety. This follows of necessity from the truth that we are ever in the power of God, are ever guided by His will and providence, and, having come forth from Him, must return to Him. Add to which, no true virtue can exist without religion, for moral virtue is concerned with those things which lead to God as man’s supreme and ultimate good; and therefore religion, which (as St. Thomas says) “performs those actions which are directly and immediately ordained for the divine honour”, rules and tempers all virtues. And if it be asked which of the many conflicting religions it is necessary to adopt, reason and the natural law unhesitatingly tell us to practise that one which God enjoins, and which men can easily recognize by certain exterior notes, whereby Divine Providence has willed that it should be distinguished, because, in a matter of such moment, the most terrible loss would be the consequence of error. Wherefore, when a liberty such as We have described is offered to man, the power is given him to pervert or abandon with impunity the most sacred of duties, and to exchange the unchangeable good for evil; which, as We have said, is no liberty, but its degradation, and the abject submission of the soul to sin.
“This kind of liberty, if considered in relation to the State, clearly implies that there is no reason why the State should offer any homage to God, or should desire any public recognition of Him; that no one form of worship is to be preferred to another, but that all stand on an equal footing, no account being taken of the religion of the people, even if they profess the Catholic faith. But, to justify this, it must needs be taken as true that the State has no duties toward God, or that such duties, if they exist, can be abandoned with impunity, both of which assertions are manifestly false. For it cannot be doubted but that, by the will of God, men are united in civil society; whether its component parts be considered; or its form, which implies authority; or the object of its existence; or the abundance of the vast services which it renders to man. God it is who has made man for society, and has placed him in the company of others like himself, so that what was wanting to his nature, and beyond his attainment if left to his own resources, he might obtain by association with others. Wherefore, civil society must acknowledge God as its Founder and Parent, and must obey and reverence His power and authority. Justice therefore forbids, and reason itself forbids, the State to be godless; or to adopt a line of action which would end in godlessness—namely, to treat the various religions (as they call them) alike, and to bestow upon them promiscuously equal rights and privileges. Since, then, the profession of one religion is necessary in the State, that religion must be professed which alone is true, and which can be recognized without difficulty, especially in Catholic States, because the marks of truth are, as it were, engraved upon it. This religion, therefore, the rulers of the State must preserve and protect, if they would provide—as they should do—with prudence and usefulness for the good of the community. For public authority exists for the welfare of those whom it governs; and, although its proximate end is to lead men to the prosperity found in this life, in so doing, it ought not to diminish, but rather to increase, man’s capability of attaining to the supreme good in which his everlasting happiness consists: which never can be attained if religion be disregarded…”( Libertas Praestantissimum, 19-21)
On 11 December, 1925, Pope Pius XI promulgated his encyclical letter Quas Primas on the kingship of Christ. The encyclical dealt with what the pope described correctly as the chief cause of the difficulties under which mankind was labouring. The pope explained that the manifold evils in the world are due to the fact that the majority of men and women have thrust Jesus Christ and His holy law out of their lives; that our Lord and His holy law have no place either in private life or in politics; and as long as individuals and states refuse to submit to the rule of Our Saviour there will be no hope of lasting peace among nations. Men must look for the peace of Christ in the kingdom of Christ—Pax Christi in Regno Christi.
In the February, 1976 issue of The Approaches Hamish Fraser stated with, alas, complete accuracy, that Quas Primas is virtually ignored by the so-called Catholic nations and by the Catholic clergy. It was, he lamented, the greatest non-event in the entire history of the Church. “What is it that caused the Catholic clergy, and the bishops of the world in particular, to be so embarrassed by this encyclical that it was virtually ignored at the time of its promulgation, and has been all but forgotten in the post-Vatican II epoch? What is it about this encyclical which caused its teaching to be passed over in silence, if not actually contradicted, by the Second Vatican Council?…”
Pope Pius XI, speaking of efforts to obtain world peace through a League of Nations, declared:
“An attempt in this direction has already and is now being made; its results, however, are almost negligible and, especially so, as far as they can be said to affect those major questions which divide and serve to arouse nations one against the other. No merely human institution of today can be as successful in devising a set of international laws which will be in harmony with world conditions as the Middle Ages were in the possession of that true League of Nations, Christianity. It cannot be denied that in the Middle Ages this law was often violated; still it always existed as an ideal, according to which one might judge the acts of nations, and a beacon light calling those who had lost their way back to the safe road.”
Michael Davies says the answer to the question of why Quas Primas was contradicted by the Second Vatican Council is that in his encyclical Pope Pius XI reaffirmed the unbroken teaching of his predecessors upon the papal throne that States as well as individuals must submit themselves to the rule of Christ the King. He says Pope Pius XI, in reaffirming this fundamental truth of our faith, was not referring simply to Catholic nations, but to the whole of mankind. The Pope “stated this truth unequivocally”, he writes, “by quoting a passage from the encyclical Annum Sacrum of Leo XIII.” The passage from the Annum Sacrum of Pope Leo XIII is contained in the encyclical Quas Primas, where Pope Pius XI, in order to reinforce his teaching, inaugurated the Feast of Christ the King:
“It was surely right, then, in view of the common teaching of the sacred books, that the Catholic Church, which is the kingdom of Christ on earth, destined to be spread among all men and all nations, should with every token of veneration salute Her Author and Founder in Her annual liturgy as King and Lord, and as King of Kings. …[T]he empire of our Redeemer embraces all men. To use the words of our immortal predecessor, Pope Leo XIII: ‘‘His empire includes not only Catholic nations, not only baptised persons who, though of right belonging to the Church, have been led astray by error, or have been cut off from her by schism, but also all those who are outside the Christian faith; so that truly the whole of mankind is subject to the power of Jesus Christ’’. Nor is there any difference in this matter between the individual and the family or the State; for all men, whether collectively or individually, are under the dominion of Christ.”
Vatican II Popes reject—though in a very subtle manner—the kingship of Christ. For instance, both Paul VI and John Paul II believed and indeed taught that the United nations—an institution which promotes worldwide genocide in the womb—and not the Catholic Church, is the institution through which world peace can be attained. On October 4, 1965, during the final session of the Second Vatican Council, Paul VI went to New York city to pay tribute to the emerging ‘universal public authority’ at its very centre, the United Nations. To the delight of the U.N. delegates, Paul VI praised their twentieth century Tower of Babel as ‘this lofty institution’ and ‘the last great hope of concord and peace.’ If the U.N. is the last great hope of peace, what then is the Holy Catholic Church, founded by the Prince of Peace Himself in order to bring peace to men of good will? And what about the Message of Fatima, Heaven’s own plan for peace in this epoch, delivered personally to the world by the Mother of God within the lifetime of Paul VI? Paul VI did not talk about Fatima on that day at the United Nations. Instead, to the thunderous applause of the General Assembly, he placed the Vatican’s seal of approval on a godless world government to be administered from the glass and steel temple of the New World Order. “Let unanimous trust grow, let its authority increase”, he said. And so it has. Since the Second Vatican Council, the Vatican has been a permanent observer to the United Nations. Vatican bureaucrats have negotiated the Vatican’s signature to a number of U.N. treaties, including the deplorable Beijing Conference agreements and the ‘U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child’, which makes no mention of the right of the child to be born. The Vatican signs these humanistic manifestoes with certain ‘reservations’; but sign them it does!—thereby legitimating the awful notion that the U.N., and not the Catholic Church, is a valid moral body which ought to exert authority over the whole of mankind!
Like Paul VI, during his tour of the United States, John Paul II addressed the General Assembly of the United Nations on October 5, 1995, proclaiming the “esteem of the “Apostolic See” and of the “Catholic Church” for this institution”, and pronounced the U.N.—an evil organization which promotes abortion, contraception, and godless humanism—“a great instrument for harmonizing and coordinating international life.” As Paul VI had done in 1965, John Paul II devoted much of his speech to human rights and called for world peace, that is, world peace to be attained through the U.N.!
Finally, if we wish to adopt a form of Christianity consistent with the Bible, then we must seriously consider whether or not we are perhaps being deceived by our society and culture—and perhaps also by our own human selfishness—when we preach democracy as the panacea for all political problems. Aside from offering the citizen certain legal rights, most versions of democracy tell us we have the power and authority to claim for ourselves certain “inalienable rights”, such as “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Yet this is one of the greatest political lies ever told! Christianity is a religion of the cross, a religion whose founder taught that true life comes only to those who are willing to die [see e.g., Mat. 10:38-39; 16:24; cf. 1 Cor. 15:31]. Among other things, this means Christians are called to give up all rights: not just the basic right to “life”, but also rights such as “liberty” and “the pursuit of happiness.” For the Bible repeatedly says Christians are to be “slaves of Christ” [e.g., Eph. 6:6; Rom. 6:22] and are to endure all manner of suffering for the sake of a future glory [see e.g., Rom. 8:18; 1 Pet. 2:18-4:19; and Chapter Six below]. How, then, can a Christian defend a political system which encourages its citizens to stand up and defend their “basic human rights”?