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Sixth Scroll: The REAL “POPE”

Copyright © Jules Dervaes

November 12, 1987




In MYSTERY OF THE AGES, in the chapter entitled “Mystery of the Church,” the Apostle of the Worldwide Church of God had identified this Church as THE TEMPLE:

The Church, then, is to grow into a HOLY TEMPLE—the spiritual TEMPLE to which Christ shall come—even as he came to a material temple of stone and metals and wood the first time.


There is no scripture foretelling the construction of a material temple in Jerusalem before Christ’s appearing.

And the Apostle Paul wrote:

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises TO BECOME A HOLY TEMPLE in the Lord. (Eph. 2:19-21)

Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is sacred, and YOU ARE THAT TEMPLE. (1 Cor. 3:16-17)

What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For WE ARE THE TEMPLE of the living God. (II Cor. 6:16)

Also, Mr. Tkach has stated:

There are many ways to defile the temple of God—or the Body of Christ. (The Worldwide News, April 6, 1987, page 3)

These, then, are irrefutable proofs that the New Testament Temple is none other than the Church, THE BODY OF CHRIST. (1 Cor. 12:27; Rom. 12:5) Furthermore, THE CHURCH, as the spiritual mother of its members, is identified as the NEW JERUSALEM!!!

But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother. (Gal. 4:26)

With this knowledge, it’s time to face all the facts. It’s time to remove the mental “roadblocks.” It’s time to proceed to that stark, but undeniable conclusion.

The NONEXISTENCE of the physical temple does ALSO mean the NONOCCURRENCE of the “abomination desolation” being set up within the PHYSICAL Jerusalem. For, no one can SIT as “God” in a temple that will not even be erected. And no Catholic pope (or anyone else) can DEFILE a “holy place” which NEITHER would exist, NOR would ever be holy!

Haven’t we skirted this touchy issue for too long? Are we refusing to consider knowledge because it goes against the Church’s TRADITIONAL beliefs? Yet, Mr. Armstrong’s challenge to such traditional Christianity still stands; it has always been: “BELIEVE THE BIBLE!”


The Ambassador College Bible Correspondence Course (1983), lesson 3, on page 11, presents this poignant question: “At His ‘coming’ (parousia), what will Christ do to ‘that Wicked [one]’ who has seated himself ‘as God’ in the temple of God?” This is in reference to Second Thessalonians 2:4.

For an unbiased explanation of what specific temple is meant here, simply “ask” the author—Paul. Apply a cardinal rule of exegesis: LET PAUL INTERPRET PAUL! Since this Apostle also wrote the passages quoted earlier from Ephesians and Corinthians, since not one retraction, correction, or even amendment was ever expressed by him, and since God recorded ALL scripture useful for our teaching (II Tim. 3-16), the correct answer is that the “temple of God” SHOULD MEAN—consistently, uniformly—THE CHURCH OF GOD. To conclude otherwise would be to exhibit a fatal prejudice against the PLAIN TRUTH, which could lead to spiritual death.

Candidly expounded, the second chapter of Second Thessalonians reveals that there will be a man in the CHURCH OF GOD who will have risen through the ministerial ranks to be placed atop this human government of God. As the highest representative of the true Church on earth, he would then cut off that authority ABOVE him and, thereby, establish himself as THE FINAL AUTHORITY. Not answering to God, he would render arbitrary decisions based on personal opinions. This exalted man would put his word above God’s WORD—the Bible! Thus, this religious leader would be taking the very PLACE OF GOD as Head of His Church.

For, in claiming to possess “the mind of Christ”—even while dispossessing the truth of Christ–he would be proclaiming himself to be—essentially and effectively—EQUAL WITH CHRIST! In asserting to use “the government of God”–even while MISUSING it as a weapon to demand the absolute loyalty only reserved for God—he would be seating himself upon the throne of God.

And so, this “God”-man would require worship of his PERSON and all his followers would be expected to bow down before his IMAGE. Now, an IDOL would stand in the “holy place”!!!

The only HOLY place—the ONLY “place” on this earth which is set apart to the service of God; the sole, unique state that belongs to God; the “holy nation” [I Pet. 2:9]—is THE CHURCH—representing the people of God. There can be no other fulfillment of Matt. 24:15!

The Ambassador College Correspondence Course (1972), lesson 2, on page 14, states:

The modern “abomination of desolation,” therefore, will also be some kind of FALSE “god” in Jerusalem!


But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. (Heb: 12:22)

As Christians you come to the NEW Jerusalem. For, certainly, the OLD Jerusalem had forfeited its special place in God’s eyes.

The plain truth, then, is that the ABOMINATION will make desolate the TRUTH of Christ and will desecrate the very CHURCH of God. Having been ousted by His own government Christ will reveal the LAWLESS ONE and return to overthrow this USURPER!

Here, then, is THE GREAT LIE—the heinous HALF-TRUTH—which is promulgated by the “man of sin”: to obey him is to obey God, while to oppose his ways is to oppose the government of God. This warped, distorted PARTIAL truth will have been set in God’s Church by “the son of perdition.” Those members who go along in harmony with this satanic deception and rigidly hold to its wicked “fruits” will perish.

They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the LIE and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. (2 Thess. 2:10-12)

Many will wish to believe the delusion that they are obedient to God when, in truth, they are only obedient to a man. It will be all-too-easy to embrace this IMAGE of Christianity rather than to face the reality that this is nothing but IDOLATRY. Adoring followers of “the vicar” will delight in their comfortable fantasy. Disdaining the REAL duty of a Christian, they will decline to enact the WHOLE—the unadulterated—truth. Peter and John understood it (Acts 4:19); the other apostles (Acts 5:29); so also Paul (I Cor. 11:1); and Mr. Armstrong. It is: FIRST, FOLLOW GOD; second, follow others ONLY AS THEY FIRST FOLLOW GOD!!!

The abrogation of this clear, God-given responsibility will open the way for what is prophesied as the GREAT APOSTASY. It is well-known that such a church-wide rebellion will occur. Here, then, is the answer to HOW it will occur. In order for the “falling away” to be “great,” it must logically be UNSUSPECTING. It cannot be out-in-the-open. It cannot come from an outside agent. It cannot originate from the lower ranks. Any such outbreak could only be public, obviously wrong, and easily squelched. Because of the hierarchical basis of the Church, this type of revolt would, by its anti-government nature, be so small and have just MINOR consequences.

Naturally the most effective deception always works from the top down. Deceive the leader and those under him will follow blindly and willingly all the way, as they tout passionately the virtue of LOYALTY. This way, people could sincerely believe that they were doing the right thing.

The problem is that, while it is right for our justice to be blind, it’s dangerous for our loyalty to be so. BLIND LOYALTY CREATES “HITLERS”!!! And, “too much” loyalty is really only a vice in disguise. The history of man should have taught us this lesson by now!

Satan is not stupid. He knows how to make “little Satans.” He knows what works. As Lucifer he, too, was once God’s TRUE representative on earth and directed “the government of God.”

HOW do you think that one-third of God’s HIGHEST creation could have become deceived?

Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. … Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist … (Eph. 6:11-14)

NOTE: Prior submission of this material has been made to the Pastor General of the Worldwide Church of God.

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