Pope Benedict XVI
What did the pope know and when did he know it?
I don’t think Cardinal Ratzinger called himself “Benedict XVI” to fulfill Malachy’s prophecy for several reasons:
1) I think he knows about the prophecy, but doesn’t pay much attention to it. Even though the Roman Church believes in continuing revelation, I don’t think the official church takes this seriously.
2) I don’t think he or anyone else wants to fulfill this prophecy because it specifically says that he would be the second-to-last pope. Does the pope really want to admit that the next pope will be the False Prophet, as the last prophecy suggests? Do they really want to believe that the city of Rome will be destroyed in the days of the very next pope? I don’t think so.
3) The liberals certainly don’t like the prophecy. Despite the frequent doom and gloom talk of many liberals, they would never accept an eschatological finality of the last pope prophecy.
4) So, whadda we got? A lucky guess? Could it be a demonic prophecy? If it is, I don’t see how Satan could gain from it. And would God give Satan that kind of information?
5) Did God give an actual REAL prophecy after the closing of the canon of Scripture? What kind of a believer was “St.” Malachy? There were very few other choices in the 1100’s – we can’t judge on the basis that he was part of the Roman Church, because he was 400 years before the Reformation. Why would God give a prophecy about the popes, anyway? Actually, a number of Old Testament prophecies are about kings of the nations, like Daniel 2, 7, and 11. The other prophets often had prophecies about the Gentile nations.
6) I’ve always said that God never does anything in a closet. When He acts in history, it’s front page stuff – He’s involved in everything, but He uses big events to demonstrate His power and sovereignty to an unbelieving world. You can’t deny that the entire world seemed to be transfixed by the events over the last few weeks, emanating from Rome. The world is looking for a human leader – the pope certainly could be in a position of world leadership. And Israel is certainly the center of the world’s troubles, from their point of view. Terrorists hate us mainly because we support Israel. So, the pope, whatever his spiritual condition, is important enough to the world to be the focus of a prophecy of God.
What say ye? (written in 2005) Unchanged from the original e-mail more than 10 years ago