Church of Rome taking more steps to call itself the Church of God

Pope Benedict XVI Sitting & Wearing White

Former Pope Benedict XVI


A while back, I noticed the following announcement related to former Pope Benedict XVI (originally known as Joseph Ratzinger):

Vatican Diary / Pope Benedict’s Parting Shot

It concerns the rite of baptism. He wanted “Church of God” to be said instead of “Christian community.” The order to change was issued a few days before his resignation. And it went into effect after the election of Francis…

In practice pope Joseph Ratzinger, as a sophisticated theologian, wanted that in the baptismal rite it should be clearly said that it is the Church of God – which subsists fully in the Catholic Church – that receives those who are being baptized, and not generically the “Christian community,” a term that also signifies the individual local communities or non-Catholic confessions, like the Protestants…

Currently in English the phrase in which the two words “Christian community” must be changed to “Church of God” is: “The Christian community welcomes you with great joy”.

In French: “La communauté chrétienne t’accueille avec une grande joie.”

In Spanish: “La comunidad cristiana te recibe con gran allegria.”

In Portuguese: “È com muita allegria que la comunidade cristã te recebe.”

Departing slightly from the original Latin are the German version: “Mit großer Freude empfängt dich die Gemeinschaft der Glaubenden [The community of believers welcomes you with great joy]” and the one in effect in Italy: “Con grande gioia la nostra comunità cristiana ti accoglie [With great joy our Christian community welcomes you],” where there is the addition of an “our” not present in the original Latin.

The Italian version is the one that Benedict XVI used each time he administered the sacrament on the Sunday of the Baptism of Jesus. And perhaps it is precisely that excessively self-referential “our” that induced the pope theologian to decide on the change.

Until 2012, in fact, Benedict XVI omitted the “our,” and although he was celebrating in Italian, he told the little baptizands: “With great joy the Christian community welcomes you.”

But in the end he must have considered the original Latin ambiguous as well. So that on last January 13, in celebrating baptism for the last time as supreme pontiff, he said: “Dear children, with great joy the Church of God welcomes you.”

And shortly afterward, among the last measures of his pontificate, he prescribed this formula for the whole Church.

It is interesting to note that the above writer commented because Joseph Ratzinger was a “sophisticated theologian” he made that change.

Actually, those who have studied the proper name for the Christian church realize that it is some version of the expression “Church of God” that the New Testament endorses.

Notice something from the Statement of Beliefs of the Continuing Church of God:


The predominant biblical name of the true Church in the New Testament is “Church of God.” Variants of this expression are clearly stated singular and plural forms in twelve different places in the New Testament (Acts 20:28; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 10:32; 11:16,22; ;15:9; 2 Corinthians 1:1; Galatians 1:13; 1 Thessalonians 2:14; 2 Thessalonians 1:4; 1 Timothy 3:5,15).  Throughout Christian history, the true church has normally used a version of the expression “Church of God” (or Church of Christ, cf. Romans 16:16) though often with another term, like a geographic region (cf. 1 Corinthians 1:2) or another word, with it (1 Timothy 3:15). Jesus said that Christians would be kept in His Father’s name (John 17:12), which most often is simply “God” in the New Testament, hence “Church of God.” The most faithful Church of God in the end times in the Book of Revelation is the Philadelphian one, but since only a remnant of that is left, the term Philadelphia remnant Church of God is an appropriate description of the portion of the Church of God that holds fast to Philadelphia era teachings. Since the true Church of God has continued from the time of the original apostles, the name Continuing Church of God helps convey that.

As I have been teaching for over a decade, in the final phase of the work, it will not be mainly issues between the Church of God and Protestant sects, but the real Church of God verses a modified version of the Church of Rome.

The Church of Rome is being prepared for this and I believe that this last ditch change by then Pope Benedict XVI fits into that.  The Church of Rome will push the idea that only it and its allies are the “Church of God” and that others using that name are newcomers that are not worthy to use that name.

Yet, historically it is the Church of God that those of us in groups like the Continuing Church of God that has continued with the ‘faith once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3) and who have used some version of the term “Church of God” or “Church of Christ” throughout history.

The Church of Rome will not like us pointing that out.  Nor pointing out that the Church of Rome has changed from biblical teachings, does not truly have apostolic succession, and does not have the true faith of the original apostolic Church of God (e.g. Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God?).  This will result in the Church of Rome backing persecution and murders of Church of God followers later this century.

And because the Continuing Church of God also points out that groups like the Eastern Orthodox Church also do not have apostolic succession, etc., many of those in groups associated with them will likely support Rome’s efforts against the faithful in the Church of God.

Some items of related interest may include:

Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions. [Português: Qual é fiel: A igreja católica romana ou a igreja do deus?]
Why Should American Catholics Should Fear Unity with the Orthodox? Are the current ecumenical meetings a good thing or will they result in disaster? Is doctrinal compromise good?
Some Similarities and Differences Between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Continuing Church of God Both groups claim to be the original church, but both groups have differing ways to claim it. Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
Orthodox Must Reject Unity with the Roman Catholics Unity between these groups will put them in position to be part of the final end time Babylon that the Bible warns against as well as require improper compromise.
What Do Roman Catholic Scholars Actually Teach About Early Church History? Although most believe that the Roman Catholic Church history teaches an unbroken line of succession of bishops beginning with Peter, with stories about most of them, Roman Catholic scholars know the truth of this matter. Is telling the truth about the early church citing Catholic accepted sources anti-Catholic? This eye-opening article is a must-read for any who really wants to know what Roman Catholic history actually admits about the early church. There is also a YouTube sermon on the subject titled Church of God or Church of Rome: What Do Catholic Scholars Admit About Early Church History?
Nazarene Christianity: Were the Original Christians Nazarenes? Who were the Nazarene Christians? What did they believe? Should 21st century Christians be modern Nazarenes? Is there a group that exists now that traces its history through the Nazarenes and holds the same beliefs today? Here is a link to a related video sermon Nazarene Christians: Were the early Christians “Nazarenes”?
Location of the Early Church: Another Look at Ephesus, Smyrna, and Rome What actually happened to the primitive Church? And did the Bible tell about this in advance?
Apostolic Succession What really happened? Did structure and beliefs change? Are many of the widely-held current understandings of this even possible? Did you know that Catholic scholars really do not believe that several of the claimed “apostolic sees” of the Orthodox have apostolic succession–despite the fact that the current pontiff himself seems to wish to ignore this view?  Is there actually a true church that has ties to any of the apostles that is not part of the Catholic or Orthodox churches?  Read this article if you truly are interested in the truth on this matter! Here is a version in the Spanish language La sucesión apostólica. ¿Ocurrió en Roma, Alejandría, Constantinopla, Antioquía, Jerusalén o Asia Menor?
Early Church History: Who Were the Two Major Groups Professed Christ in the Second and Third Centuries? Did you know that many in the second and third centuries felt that there were two major, and separate, professing Christian groups in the second century, but that those in the majority churches tend to now blend the groups together and claim “saints” from both? “Saints” that condemn some of their current beliefs. Who are the two groups?
Persecutions by Church and State This article documents some that have occurred against those associated with the COGs and some prophesied to occur. Will those with the cross be the persecutors or the persecuted–this article has the shocking answer. There is also a YouTube video sermon you can watch: The Coming Persecution of the Church. Here is information in the Spanish language: Persecuciones de la Iglesia y el Estado.

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