Jesus replied, “You are frauds and hypocrites! How accurately did Isaiah prophesy about you phonies when he said:
‘These people honor me with their words
while their hearts run far away from me!
Their worship is nothing more than a charade!
For they continue to insist
that their man-made traditions
are equal to the instructions of God.’
“You abandon God’s commandments just to keep men’s rituals, such as ceremonially washing utensils, cups, and other things.”
Then he added, “How skillful you’ve become in rejecting God’s law in order to maintain your man-made set of rules. For example, Moses taught us:
‘Honor your father and your mother,’
‘Whoever insults or mistreats his father or
mother must be put to death.’
“But your made-up rules allow a person to say to his parents, ‘I’ve decided to take the support you were counting on from me and make it my holy offering to God, and that will be your blessing instead.’ How convenient! The rules you teach exempt him from providing for his aged parents. Do you really think God will honor your traditions passed down to others, making up these rules that nullify God’s Word? And you’re doing many other things like that.” ~ Mark 7:6-13, TPT
Long before the time of Jesus, the Jewish religious leaders frequently added to the Law of Moses their own traditions—the traditions of men—that were their rules they made everyone follow. The reason they added their traditions was because these religious leaders wanted to make the Word of God more convenient to themselves. They also wanted to control the entire Jewish population—to control Israel—and they wanted to take the place of God.
Over the course of time, mostly after the Roman Empire destroyed the Jewish Temple in 70 AD, as well as after the deaths of Jesus Christ’s apostles, the Roman believers in Christ developed their own highly sophisticated theology and organizational structure that was controlled by the papacy. The papacy was nothing like the Ekklesia that began on the Day of Pentecost, which was right after Jesus Christ’s Ascension Day that happened forty days after His Resurrection.
By the way, Jesus Christ was raptured twice. He first was raptured on the Day of First Fruits, when He rose from the grave and then secretly went to Heaven where He was presented before Father God who accepted His Son as the firstfruits of the resurrected dead. Secondly, Jesus Christ was raptured when He ascended to Heaven right in front of His original disciples.
Now, although the Roman Catholic Church has claimed that it is the Church Christ died for, according to the New Testament, the real truth is that the Roman Catholic Church’s beginning was not based on the teachings of Jesus Christ or His original disciples who became apostles. Indeed, for the first 280 years after Jesus Christ established His Ekklesia on the day of Pentecost, the Roman Empire banned believers in Christ and His teachings.
In fact, it wasn’t until after the Roman Emperor Constantine’s alleged “conversion” that the Roman Catholic Church made “Christianity” the ONLY religion of the Roman Empire. As a result, the Roman Empire stopped persecuting and crucifying believers in Christ around 313 AD.
However, even though the Roman Catholic Church has claimed it is the Church Jesus Christ established, nowhere in the New Testament are there any mentions of a papacy; the confession of sin to a Catholic priest for his absolution; the immaculate conception of Mary, the mother of Jesus; the worship of Mary, the mother of Jesus; purgatory; infant baptisms; the petitioning of saints in Heaven for their prayers; calling priests “fathers”; the rosary and its string of prayer beads; Lent; and so many more of the Roman Catholic Church’s traditions of men.
Like the Jewish religious leaders who added their own traditions to the Law of Moses, the Roman Catholic Church added its own traditions to the teachings of Jesus Christ and His disciples—to the New Testament. The Roman Catholic Church did this because it wanted to make the Word of God more convenient to its papacy and the religious leaders under the Pope, and it wanted to combine and control the “Christian” and pagan populations. Moreover, the Roman Catholic Church’s early religious leaders wanted to control the world, to take the place of God, and to give absolute POWER to the Roman Catholic Church. Indeed, even the Roman Catholic Church’s history confirms that many Popes, Bishops, and other religious leaders were wicked, power hungry, and greedy for monetary gain. This description also applies to many of the Jewish High Priests, Pharisees, and Sadducees.
Most important, because the Roman Empire was massive, sprawling, and diverse, the Roman Catholic Church’s religious leaders not only wanted to distance themselves from the Jewish communities that were still celebrating God’s appointed seven annual feasts but also these religious leaders wanted to absorb the pagan feasts, beliefs, and rituals of their non-Christian citizens—feasts, beliefs, and rituals the Roman Emperor Constantine also continued to practice. Thus, the Roman Catholic Church’s religious leaders at the time of Emperor Constantine wanted to absorb the existing paganism so that these religious leaders could get all Roman citizens to embrace the Roman Catholic Church’s religious brand—“Christianity.”
Long story short, it is the Roman Catholic Church’s traditions of men that became the law and the customs the entire Empire had to follow as soon as said religious leaders during Emperor Constantine’s reign “Christianized” their existing pagan rituals and feasts. These traditions of men became the law and customs that most of the world, Protestant believers included, still follow today. A few of these traditions of men are the celebration of Christ’s birth (the annual Christmas holiday), the celebration of Good Friday (the annual celebration of Christ’s death), and the celebration of Easter (the annual celebration of Christ’s resurrection).
The uncomfortable truth is that there is nowhere in the entire Word of God—the Old and the New Testaments—that Father God instructs His Children to celebrate His Son’s birth. Christmas, therefore, is not an annual God-appointed feast day. It is just one of the many pagan feast days and rituals that the Roman Catholic Church absorbed and Christianized.
Likewise, there is nowhere in the entire Word of God that Good Friday is presented as a God-appointed feast (annual holiday). Good Friday is the Roman Catholic Church religious leaders’ attempt at getting rid of Passover—the annual God-appointed feast day that is in the Word of God. Passover is the day of preparation for the Jewish High Sabbath (a sacred day), and Passover is the day the Roman soldiers crucified the Messiah on the Cross.
Then too, there is nowhere in the entire Word of God that Easter is presented as a God-appointed feast (annual holiday). Easter, however, is the Roman Catholic Church religious leaders’ additional attempt at getting rid of Passover, which they did by making Easter fall on the first Sunday after the first full moon that occurred on or after the spring or vernal equinox. These same religious leaders also changed Passover’s name to Good Friday, changed First Fruits’ name to Easter, changed Passover’s significance—Jesus Christ’s crucifixion day—and changed First Fruits’ significance, which was Jesus Christ’s resurrection day. By changing Passover and First Fruits’ dates, names, and significances, the Roman Catholic Church’s religious leaders were able to get rid of three Jewish feasts—Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and First Fruits. These were Jewish Feast days that many of the Roman Catholic Church’s “Christians” were observing. Having Roman Catholic “Christians” who also celebrated these Jewish Feasts days was causing a big problem in the Empire. Even so, the truths these early Roman Catholic Church religious leaders tried to bury were the Holy Bible’s annual God-appointed feast days of Passover and First Fruits, which were the days when Jesus Christ died and rose from the grave—not Good Friday and Easter.
The bottom line is as follows: If the Roman Catholic Church started with Jesus Christ and His disciples it certainly has done everything in its power to change or remove the Lord and His disciples’ teachings by either altering or replacing them all together with their own traditions of men, all for their own convenience. Out of their own disdain for the Jewish festivals’ traditions that line up with the entire Word of God, and because of their own life of compromise—mixing Christianized pagan feasts and rituals with their “Christianity”—the early Roman Catholic Church’s religious leaders ended up leaving behind an unholy legacy.
Tragically, today’s believers in Christ have inherited from these early Roman religious leaders the same life of compromise and the same disdain for God’s appointed seven annual feast days that begin with Passover and end with Tabernacles. Consequently, way too many of today’s believers in Christ—Roman Catholics and Protestants—still religiously celebrate Christmas, Good Friday, and Easter. They do so as believers in Christ who are ignorant of the following fact: By continuing to celebrate these nonbiblical feasts, they are saying that the Roman Catholic Church’s attempt to change Father God’s prophetic calendar was ordained by God when it wasn’t.
It is evident that Father God foresaw this unfortunate example of the blind leading the blind—not only in the Roman Catholic Church’s celebrations of the wrong feasts but also in ALL the Hebrew and Roman religious leaders’ other traditions of men that have been added to the Word of God. Sadly, every followed tradition of men is why so many believers in Christ who will be living right before the Tribulation Period begins will be so unprepared and unalert that they—carnal believers and natural men and women (unbelievers – Jews and Gentiles)—will miss the Rapture and end up suffering during the Tribulation Period.
May the Lord help them see the errors of their ways before it is too late. Amen.