Many voters during this election cycle are finding it extremely difficult, if not impossible altogether, to bring themselves to vote for one of the major party candidates for the United States Presidency. While others are proverbially holding their noses and voting for the “lesser of two evils,” as evangelical preacher Franklin Graham advised.1 However, no matter how different the policies and platforms of the candidates seem to be, they are working for the same director and their respective policies lead to the same ends—the repudiation of every principle of the United States Constitution and the subsequent establishment of Papal principles. What are conscientious Christians to do?
“The Lord would have His people bury political questions. On these themes silence is eloquence. Christ calls upon His followers to come into unity on the pure gospel principles which are plainly revealed in the word of God. We cannot with safety vote for political parties; for we do not know whom we are voting for. We cannot with safety take part in any political schemes. We cannot labor to please men who will use their influence to repress religious liberty, and to set in operation oppressive measures to lead or compel their fellow men to keep Sunday as the Sabbath. The first day of the week is not a day to be reverenced. It is a spurious sabbath, and the members of the Lord’s family cannot participate with the men who exalt this day, and violate the law of God by trampling upon His Sabbath. The people of God are not to vote to place such men in office; for when they do this, they are partakers with them of the sins which they commit while in office… What are we to do, then? — Let political questions alone.”2
That both a Hillary Clinton and a Donald Trump presidency will lead to Romanism and persecution for those who stand for liberty of conscience, was made abundantly clear from their own mouths at the Al Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner, a fundraising event for Catholic Charities, which are mostly Jesuit-founded and operated. It must also be considered that both the running mates of the presidential nominees are Jesuits themselves. In their respective closing remarks strong appeals were made to build bridges between Protestants and Catholics and to stop anti-Catholic rhetoric and sentiments. Here is an excerpt from Hillary Clinton’s closing remarks wherein she praised Pope Francis’ “humility” and admonished listeners to take heed to his message.
“And when I think about what Al Smith went through it’s important to just reflect how groundbreaking it was for him, a Catholic, to be my party’s nominee for president. Don’t forget – school boards sent home letters with children saying that if Al Smith is elected president you will not be allowed to have or read a Bible. Voters were told that he would annul Protestant marriages. And I saw a story recently that said people even claimed the Holland Tunnel was a secret passageway to connect Rome and America, to help the Pope rule our country. Those appeals, appeals to fear and division, can cause us to treat each other as the Other. Rhetoric like that makes it harder for us to see each other, to respect each other, to listen to each other… I’m not Catholic. I’m a Methodist, but one of the things that we share is the belief that in order to achieve salvation we need both faith and good works. And you certainly don’t need to be Catholic to be inspired by the humility and heart of the Holy Father, Pope Francis. Or to embrace his message. His message about rejecting a mindset of hostility, his calls to reduce inequality, his warnings about climate change, his appeal that we build bridges, not walls. Now as you may know, my running mate, Tim, is Catholic and went to Jesuit schools, and one of the things he and I have talked about is this idea from the Jesuits of the Magis, the more, the better. But we need to get better at finding ways to disagree on matters of policy while agreeing on questions of decency and civility. How we talk to each other, treat each other, respect each other.”3
A portion of Donald Trump’s speech, though not as lengthy as Clinton’s, echoed the same sentiments. “We can also agree on the need to stand up to anti-Catholic bias, to defend religious liberty and to create a culture that celebrates life. America is in many ways divided like it’s never been before. And the great religious leaders here tonight give us all an example that we can follow… We’ve got to be very strong, very, very smart, and we’ve got to come together not only as a nation, but as a world community.”4
Both candidates are echoing Pope Francis’ message of unity while disparaging those that “criticize” other religions and refuse to join in the movement for the “common good,” specifically the Roman Catholic Church. What does this mean for the faithful Protestants who recognize that the Pope is the anti-Christ and for those who rightly identify the leopard-like beast in Revelation 13:1-10 as Roman Catholicism, and for those who are faithfully preaching the present truth of the Three angels Messages that delineate Popery as Babylon and attribute the Mark of the Beast to this system? It is clear that such persons will be denied freedom of speech and freedom of the press; and this is already happening to a greater or less degree. We must not be fooled by the Roman Catholic Church’s pretended tolerance and efforts for peace; and neither should we be deceived by politician’s supposed love for the United States Constitution and rhetoric favoring unity in diversity. These are just means to achieve the ends of the Papacy.
“Marvelous in her shrewdness and cunning is the Roman Church. She can read what is to be. She bides her time, seeing that the Protestant churches are paying her homage in their acceptance of the false sabbath and that they are preparing to enforce it by the very means which she herself employed in bygone days… The Roman Catholic Church, with all its ramifications throughout the world, forms one vast organization under the control, and designed to serve the interests, of the papal see. Its millions of communicants, in every country on the globe, are instructed to hold themselves as bound in allegiance to the pope. Whatever their nationality or their government, they are to regard the authority of the church as above all other. Though they may take the oath pledging their loyalty to the state, yet back of this lies the vow of obedience to Rome, absolving them from every pledge inimical to her interests.”5
2. White, Ellen. Fundamentals of Christian Education (1923), 1975
5. White, Ellen. The Great Controversy (1911), page 580