Sunday, February 24, 2013

Let's Pray for a Christ-Following Pope

Like it or not, the Pope has a huge impact on millions of people. His thoughts, ideas, statements, decrees, etc. impact lives all around the globe. As Pope Benedict departs, the Vatican will have to decide who the next Papal resident of St. Peter's will be.

My gut reaction to all this is to just ignore it. Roman Catholicism is at the other end of the spectrum from simple church. The Pope has no impact whatsoever on what I believe; therefore, as an individual Christian it matters nil to me what the "Holy Father" has to say.

However, I keep dwelling on the millions of people the Pope impacts. What he says, whoever he is, really does matter. While some within Catholicism know Jesus as Lord, my guess is that the majority do not. Keeping in mind that there are over one billion Catholics worldwide, that is many souls who are still apart from Christ.

Instead of ignoring the latest Papal transition, I'm burdened to pray for a Christ-following Pope. Just imagine what a truly redeemed person could do in that position. The impact could be tremendous. A Pope who believes in the biblical gospel has the potential to share the good news with millions upon millions.

I have known a number of Roman Catholics in my life who I know love Jesus Christ. I'm not sure how they deal with Rome's faulty teachings, but they follow Christ nonetheless. Because of that, I assume (I hope correctly) that there are some in leadership positions within Catholicism who also love the Lord. My hope is that one of these will be selected as the next Pope.

Throughout history we've seen God select people for key roles who were unexpected. In the bible we read about, for example, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, David, Amos, many of the original twelve apostles, and Paul. These are not men that we might have expected to be chosen. When we look at church history we see other unexpected people used greatly by God such as Athanasius, Augustine, Patrick, John Calvin, John Newton, William Carey, William Wilberforce, Fanny Crosby, C.S. Lewis, and many others.

In light of this, maybe God will, in His absolute sovereignty, select an unexpected Pope. Maybe God will appoint someone who actually follows God. Maybe God will choose a missionary Pope who will preach the gospel to the masses during the Mass. What a great and glorious day that would be!

Let's all pray fervently that God puts a Pope in place who loves Christ, obeys Christ, and proclaims Christ!


Arthur Sido said...

I concur and join you in prayer although I also have to think that someone who was a Christ-follower could not in good conscience accept the titles and trappings of the papcy. What follower of Christ would permit men to call him "Holy Father" or "The Vicar of Christ"?

Eric said...


I've thought about that, too. It's difficult to imagine. I'm praying almost in spite of that.

Chris Jefferies said...

Interesting idea. Organic house church in the Vatican, anyone?

But I am with you in praying.

Eric said...


I don't suspect that the Vatican will change much in the way of church practice in our lifetimes; however, if they had a Pope that knows Christ, then he at least could preach the gospel. Let's see what God will do.

md said...

I can say like Paul I desire all men to be saved, but for a Pope to be a true Christ follower, he could not a Pope; i.e. the head of Roman Catholicism and espouse their anti-Christ doctrine. From Mary as Mediatrix and a help to salvation, to "Christ" being sacrificed on their alter and given to the people to eat him body, sould and divinity, to indulgences, purgatory and so much more, it would be a complete impossibility.

Eric said...


I understand what you are saying, and I tend to agree. Additionally, I respect your familiarity with the subject.

I'm thinking of the possibility of a Pope who grew up in the Catholic Church only recently to be saved. Maybe he thinks it is best for himself to remain within Catholicism to work for reform.

I recognize that the likelihood of this is slim to say the least. However, I believe we can hope.