John the Baptist and his “internal torture of doubt”
A) The text of the speech by J.M.Bergoglio:
“John truly “is the greatest man born of woman, the greatest saint: this is how Jesus canonized him”. But John “meets his end in prison, with his throat cut”. The Gospel passage seems to end on a note of “resignation”. John’s “disciples heard of it, they came and took his body, and laid it in a tomb”. This is how “the greatest man born of woman” meets his end. “A great prophet, the last of the prophets, the only one allowed to see the hope of Israel”…… John “suffered in prison — let’s say the word — the inner torture of doubt”. He ends up asking himself: “Might I have made a mistake? This messiah is not how I imagined the Messiah would be!”. Thus, “he sent his disciples to ask Jesus: ‘Tell the truth, are you he who is to come?’”.
Obviously, “that doubt caused him to suffer” and he asked himself: “Was I wrong to proclaim one who isn’t he? Have I deceived the people?”. Thus, he had “great suffering and inner loneliness”….. “I instead must decrease, but decrease in this way: in spirit, in body, in all”…. “A great one that did not seek his own glory, but that of God” and that ends in such a manner “so prosaic, in the anonymity”. But with this attitude … “he prepared the way for Jesus”, which similarly “died in agony, alone, without his disciples …” (Homily, Casa Santa Marta, February 5, 2016)
B) References to Scriptures:
“Now it happened that when all the people had been baptised and while Jesus after his own baptism was at prayer, heaven opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in a physical form, like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son; today have I fathered you” (Luk 3:21-22)
“The next day, he saw Jesus coming towards him and said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. It was of him that I said, “Behind me comes one who has passed ahead of me because he existed before me.” I did not know him myself, and yet my purpose in coming to baptise with water was so that he might be revealed to Israel.’ And John declared, ‘I saw the Spirit come down on him like a dove from heaven and rest on him. I did not know him myself, but he who sent me to baptise with water had said to me, “The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and rest is the one who is to baptise with the Holy Spirit.” I have seen and I testify that he is the Chosen One of God.’ The next day as John stood there again with two of his disciples, Jesus went past, and John looked towards him and said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God.’ And the two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus” (Joh 1:29-37)
“The disciples of John gave him all this news, and John, summoning two of his disciples, sent them to the Lord to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or are we to expect someone else?’ When the men reached Jesus they said, ‘John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask, “Are you the one who is to come or are we to expect someone else?” ‘ At that very time he cured many people of diseases and afflictions and of evil spirits, and gave the gift of sight to many who were blind. Then he gave the messengers their answer, ‘Go back and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind see again, the lame walk, those suffering from virulent skin-diseases are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, the good news is proclaimed to the poor; and blessed is anyone who does not find me a cause of falling.’ When John’s messengers had gone he began to talk to the people about John, ‘What did you go out into the desert to see? A reed swaying in the breeze? No! Then what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? Look, those who go in magnificent clothes and live luxuriously are to be found at royal courts! Then what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and much more than a prophet: he is the one of whom scripture says: Look, I am going to send my messenger in front of you to prepare your way before you. ‘I tell you, of all the children born to women, there is no one greater than John; yet the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.’ All the people who heard him, and the tax collectors too, acknowledged God’s saving justice by accepting baptism from John; but by refusing baptism from him the Pharisees and the lawyers thwarted God’s plan for them” (Luk 7:18-30)
Bergoglio is limitless and without brakes. He perseveres in error and confirms, to all true Christians, that if to err is human, to persevere in error is diabolical.
Bergoglio perseveres claiming that John the Baptist was assailed by doubt of having lived a wrong life. This is false, because Jesus in the Gospels says the exact opposite. Jesus speaks of John as one who is not “reed shaken by the wind”, enhancing the firmness of John the Baptist, his being firm in his faith. Not a reed in the wind, swinging now right, now left without infusing any certainty; but a firm, confident man, without doubt. For his faith Jesus has placed him above all.
Bergoglio However, despite the evidence of what is written in the Gospels, goes back again on this matter. He wants to make believe that even the greatest saints either have been sinners (as mentioned recently of King David), or at least they doubted, lacking of faith in God, as he stated for Our Lady (when he said: “Our Lady was human and had perhaps wanted to say to the Lord, «Lies! I was deceived!»“) or twice for John the Baptist (saying that John “lived the darkness of error, and the darkness of a life burned in the error“; and in a negative way, that “Jesus is different also from John the Baptist“).
From the words of Jesus, these interpretations had never emerged in history. The biblical passage analyzed by Bergoglio (Gospel of Mark, chapter 6, verses 14-29) does not leave, at all, to intend what Bergoglio states.
Bergoglio manifests a blasphemous thought that is unprecedented.
For what reason does Bergoglio say that John “has suffered in the prison the inner torture of the doubt“? This statement is diabolical. John the Baptist is for all a champion of the faith, the greatest saint (Lk 7,28), because of its consistency, for his faith. Anything but doubt!
For what reason does Bergoglio say: “because that doubt pained him; «Have I made a mistake in announcing one that is not? Have I deceived the people?»; the suffering, the internal loneliness of this man“? All this is deception! John had no doubt that Jesus was the Christ. God the Father Almighty has confirmed it to him, making His voice heard and sending His Spirit, as a dove, in the moment when John baptized Jesus. John sent His disciples to Jesus so they should believe in Him. John the Baptist already believed. Immediately he had indicated to his disciples that Jesus was “the Lamb of God,” as reported in the Gospel of John the Evangelist (who was his disciple and witness to all this: Jn 1, 29-37).
For what reason does Bergoglio say that John “ends in a manner “so prosaic, in anonymity”. But with his attitude …”has prepared the way for Jesus, “which similarly” died in anguish, alone, without His disciples“?. Stating that means blaspheming the Holy Spirit. John the Baptist is the precursor of Jesus for having invited everyone to convert, so that all hearts sprinkled clean from sin could receive Christ and rise to new life, to live the Kingdom on earth, that when Christ is physically present, already Is. Anything but anguish! John is the witness!
Under the cross with Jesus were Mary and the other John, the Apostle of Love. Their presence represent the Mother Church (Mary) and all Her faithful children, totally purified in Love (John the Apostle). So no loneliness and no anguish, but filial abandonment to the will of the Father, so that the Father’s will be done in perfection.
Isaiah says of Jesus: “Ill-treated, He let himself be mortified, yet he never opened his mouth: He was like a lamb brought to be slaughtered, like a dumb sheep before its shearers, yet He never opened his mouth” (Is 53,7). This is the truth. Both Jesus and John are perfect examples of total, filial obedience to the Father!
The interpretations of Bergoglio are false and have no basis in the Scriptures. Bergoglio distorts the true meaning of the Holy Scripture to instill in his listeners a new gospel, which is not from God and not from the Holy Spirit.
In this regard, the words of St. Paul strongly echo: “But even if we or an Angel from Heaven, should preach to you a gospel that is different from the one we preached to you, may he be anathematized! We have already said and now I say again: if anyone preaches any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed! ” (Gal 1,8-9). The anathema is the curse.
Whoever has ears to hear, let him hear; and hear the voice of the Spirit: “Come out, my people, from her (Babylon) that ye be not partakers of her sins and receive not of her plagues” (Rev 18, 4b). Who does not want to lose the authentic Christian faith, but wants to remain faithful to Christ, come out of Babylon, and let themseves be embraced by Mary, Mother of the Church, the New Jerusalem.