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Saturday, November 22, 2014


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The Papacy In History And Prophecy




Charlemagne's reign lasted for more than 40 years and during that time the world was filled with the renown of his deeds. He extended the size of the Frankish kingdom on all sides, completed the union of the German people, attacked and overthrew the enemies of Western Christendom, cemented the relations with the Church, and more completely brought about the union of the German elements with Christianity, thereby giving to the Western world a new form and preparing for the German people a great future.

AD 772 New Pope, Hadrian 1, elected. The king of the Lombards, Desiderius, tried to win the pope to his own side against Charles, but without success. Hadrian at once appealed to Charles pointing out Desederius' plans and Charles declared war and made for Italy.

Ad 774 Charles entered Rome and was magnificently received. He increased the gift of land made to Stephen by his father.

AD 778 Hadrian wrote to Charles mentioning the land he was given. He made reference to a forged document called the Donation of Constantine as a proof that he should


receive the land by divine and regal right. This forgery set forth that Constantine having been cured of leprosy by the prayers of Pope Sylvester resolved to bestow on the pope the city of Rome, his palace, and all the provinces of Italy and of the Western regions. By most textual critics and experts this document was written in 744 and was manufactured in Rome to make the pope succeed to the glory and position of the old Roman emperors.

780's Charles continued to gradually add a few more cities and lands to the already expanding temporal dominion of the papacy.

AD 795 Hadrian died and Leo succeeded.

AD 799 Leo, charged with heinous crimes and maltreated flees to Charles for help. Officers of the king escorted him back to Rome, held the trial of the oppressors and sent them into exile.

AD 800 Charles came to Rome & the Pope, claiming to he judged by no man, absolved himself of his own sins and confessed his innocence of the crimes.

On Christmas day the pope "by the will of God and Peter" crowned Charles "the most pious Augustus, great and pacific emperor." Charles now became Emperor, rather than the King of the Franks despite the fact that the pope had no authority whatever to confer this title. (It was later that the pope claimed this right of coronation as a precedent for future coronations).



The closer relationship of Church and State made the ecclesiastical offices of great political importance and the hierarchy of the Church was fully conceived and functional. Secular affairs engrossed the higher ecclesiastics whilst ignorance began to characterize the lower clergy. The election of bishops was done by the king and the pope fought bitterly against it. The bishops themselves recognized that it was to their interest to bring their churches into dependence upon their rulers. The tendency was carried even further and firmly crystallized in feudalism where large ecclesiastical estates and properties became an integral part of the feudal order.

In the struggle of the 9th century the great church prelates take the place of the secular nobles in political influence and council. Their influence served to increase the power of the pope whom each party was eager to secure at any time as an ally.

Unfortunately secular obligations brought evil and corruption, simony and ambition, greed and pride which began to thrive amongst the clergy. Marriage, although forbidden, was common amongst the clergy and vice of every kind increased.