The prophesied last pope is here according to Saint Malachy’s vision of 112 popes: "Peter the Roman/Petrus Romanus." If Malachy is accurate, then Armageddon and the Tribulation that he "pastures" during it cannot be more than a single pope’s reign away or a few decades. But is Malachy’s last pope a reliable end time sign that faithful saints should get excited about? What does Bible prophecy say about the pope? Is he the Antichrist or the False Prophet? Learn the surprising details that both Catholic and Bible prophecy agree on about the last pope’s evil reign.
Saint Malachy's “Prophecy of the Popes”
Pope Francis has replaced Pope Benedict XVI. You might think that a transition of popes would be of no interest to those watching for solid signs of the Apocalypse. Believers typically focus instead on approaching comets or asteroids (Rev 8:8), major earthquakes (Rev 6:12=Mt 24:7), pandemics (Mt 24:7), or wars and rumors of war involving Israel (Lk 21:20) and the like. But thanks to Saint Malachy's surprisingly accurate “prophecy of the popes” the prospect of a new pope to replace Pope Benedict XVI is big, exciting news for those hoping for Jesus to come in their lifetime. It may be extra-biblical prophecy (not even endorsed by the Catholic church). It may be realistically less than 100% accurate and questionable in its authenticity. Yet in the never-ending quest to know when the end of the age will come, many believers find it hard to resist considering it.
Saint Malachy was the Archbishop of Armagh who had a vision while visiting Rome in 1139. He wrote down a few lines in Latin for what he saw about each pope and then gave the document to Pope Innocent II. It remained unpublished in the Vatican archives until 1590 (leading some to suspect it to be a forgery written later by someone else).
Regardless of doubts over its true source, it has gained in fame over the years because of how well it can be matched up to past popes. Admittedly, the fact that the prophecy consists of 112 short and vague papal descriptions is a key to it having this favorable perception. It would not be a stretch to liken it to horoscopes (which similarly have their legions of fans despite a dubious reputation).
As an ex-Catholic with a focus on Bible prophecy, my interest is not to validate this Catholic prophecy. My goal is to discern anyone's predictions by Bible prophecy (Acts 17:11; Isa 8:20) and disregard them if our "more sure word of prophecy" contradicts it.
Indication of Time Remaining?
What's most intriguing about Malachy's prophecy is that it is ready to complete now with the new 112th pope in his and our lifetime.
If you stop to think about it, there could have been 100, 50 or even 5 more popes left on Malachy's list today. Instead, we now have only the remaining lifespan of a single elderly man to complete this prophecy. Given that the average reign of a pope is 7.5 years and the two longest reigns were only 31 years (Pope Pius IX) and 26 years (Pope John Paul II), this means that we have at most three decades and probably more like one or two.
If accurate, it is exciting and encouraging news for those who want to see Jesus return in their lifetime, and another reason why Malachy's prophecy is so popular. It's telling most believers what they want to hear.
More importantly, this may fit what Bible prophecy indicates for how much time we have left until Jesus' return: only several more Sabbath years (which come every seven years and would cover just a few decades). Longtime readers know that I am not like most of my prophecy expert peers continually suggesting that the end time “may” start “this year” or even “in the next few years.” I cannot say that because none of the plain and unmistakable prophetic milestone markers that Jesus (Mt 24) or Revelation (Rev 6:12) describe have happened yet. Nor are they looking ready or about to pop.
However, the general consensus that Iran and her Arab allies have for years now been actively pursuing the development of nuclear weapons means that the first milestone—the Psalm 83 nuclear Middle East war—is just over the horizon. It's hard to imagine such nuclear proliferation in the Middle East being prevented for more than a decade or two.
That is why the arrival of the last pope of Malachy's prophecy is a little exciting to me as well. It dovetails with my understanding that the prophetic end time stage will be set in our lifetime.
The 112th and Last Pope – Petrus Romanus / Peter the Roman
Another key point of interest for people who follow Bible prophecy is what Malachy says about the circumstances surrounding the last pope. Both Malachy and the Bible agree that he reigns during the Great Tribulation in which he plays a key role. Here's a translation of the lines for the last pope, pope number 112 - Peter the Roman:
In the extreme persecution of the Holy Roman Church, there will sit [i.e., as bishop].
Peter the Roman, who will pasture his sheep in many tribulations, and when these things are finished,
the city of seven hills [i.e. Rome]
will be destroyed, and the terrible judge will judge his people.
Even for people with only a cursory knowledge of end time Bible prophecy, the parallels between Malachy's final pope prophecy above and Bible prophecy are obvious:
- Malachy: “many tribulations” = Mt 24:21: “For at that time there will be great tribulation...” = Daniel 12:1: “...There will be a time of distress such as never has occurred since nations came into being until that time. But at that time all your people who are found written in the book will escape.”
- Malachy: “extreme persecution” = Rev 12:13: “When the dragon saw that he had been thrown to earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male child.”
- Malachy: “the city of seven hills will be destroyed” = Rev 16:19-20: “...the cities of the nations fell. ... Every island fled, and the mountains disappeared.”
- Malachy: “the terrible judge will judge his people” = Rev 19:11: “Then I saw heaven opened, and there was a white horse. Its rider is called Faithful and True, and He judges and makes war in righteousness.”
By the way, don't be surprised that Malachy says the church will be persecuted. Just because both Catholic and Protestants believers are part of Jesus' church does not mean they will automatically escape the Great Tribulation for their belief. I expect that most of today's roughly two billion believers will not escape the Great Tribulation. This is because it will take faith to act on God's escape instructions in time before the Tribulation starts. Many believers will have doubts or be deceived and not act. This will leave them in a position of disobedience without God's protection to be tortured into taking the Mark of the Beast just like most non-believers will. Some non-believers will become believers along the way, and some believers will be offended when there is no pretrib rapture and betray other believers over to the Beast and his mark (Mt 24:10).
What's more surprising about the Petrus Romanus prophecy is its perspective that the returning judge (Jesus) is “terrible” or “dreadful.” Jesus Christ is supposed to only be a terror to the wicked (Mt 24:30). He's coming with a reward for the righteous (Rev 22:12) who should love his appearing and judgment in their favor (2Ti 4:8). But this is typical of Catholic prophecies. You sometimes have to flip the good guys and bad guys to make sense of it. (This is perhaps appropriate given that the papacy and Catholic church are man-made religious institutions supported by mere tradition, not by Scripture or the teachings of Jesus in whose name they come (Mt 24:5).)
The End In 2026? It's Now Possible
Since learning in 2001 that Yeshua must return in a Sabbath year, I've had to rule out three Sabbath year cycle windows for the final 7 years (2003-2009, 2010-2016, 2017-2023). With the next window (2024-2030) less than 7 years away, I'm ready to share why I believe, based on the real end time sign of Mt 24:14, that this can be the one. If it is, the "birth pains" (WW3 + Wormwood, Lk 21:10-11) would hit near its middle in 2026 with Yeshua returning in 2030. Find out what's changed to convince me about 2026 and what you can do about it...
Identifying the Pope in Bible Prophecy
If Catholic readers were somehow not offended by the previous paragraph, I suspect my next point on who the pope is in Bible prophecy will use up the rest of their good will (sorry, guys). Contrary to what Catholics might hope, the pope is not one of the Two Witnesses or Elijah, or even one of the good guys. And no, he's not the Antichrist either. (See, I'm not purposely anti-Catholic). Nevertheless, he's only about one step down from that according to Revelation.
Revelation 13 is a frightening chapter where the Antichrist / Beast (Rev 13:1-10) and another “beastly” Tribulation figure are described (Rev 13:11-18). This is the chapter where the dreaded mark of the beast that they force on people is introduced as well.
Rev 13:11 (KJV) - And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
This “beast from the earth” is the same person later referred to as the “False Prophet” (Rev 16:13). The Antichrist's partner-in-crime is linked to him up until their mutual end in the lake of fire (Rev 19:20; 20:10). Here is why I think the last pope will fulfill the False Prophet prophecy:
- "Like A Lamb" — In the Bible, the Lamb represents Christ, the Lamb of God. The pope takes the title "Vicar of Christ" meaning he is presented as Christ on Earth, in his place. So he is literally the most famous man on earth to be "like a lamb," or like THE lamb.
- "Two Horns" — The pope's mitre literally has two horns. If you go to the Catholic Encyclopedia, they themselves call it a "two horned mitre!" Again, its plain meaning is fulfilled in the pope. He is a like a lamb with two horns.
- "Spoke Like a Dragon" — Revelation 12:9 tells us that Satan is the Dragon and the "Serpent of old" of the Garden of Eden. Jesus called Satan the Father of lies (Jn 8:44). Therefore speaking like a dragon refers to the deceptive talk of Satan. But this "spoke like a dragon" is more than just telling any old mistruth. Remember how Satan spoke to Eve in the Garden? He did not tell her obviously crazy ideas like "drink human blood and worship me." Even Eve with her fledgling discernment would know to reject that. Instead he told her subtle, appealing lies which sounded reasonable and appealed to her desire to be good. This is how the pope operates.
Protestants already know that the pope's Catholicism is at odds with the teaching of the Bible. Yet, even in the midst of leading people astray from what the Bible teaches, he is widely respected as a man of God, and a great spiritual world leader. That's speaking like a dragon! (NOTE: In case Catholics reading this are wondering, I bear no malice towards Catholicism or the pope. In fact, I was a Catholic until I read the Bible through for myself-something I was never encouraged to do by Catholicism.)
Revelation 13:12-14—12 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, 14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.
The pope is the leading religious figure whose endorsement is the most important one a future Antichrist "declaring himself god" (2The 2:4) would want in order to ensure a global following. Therefore, the pope is positioned better than anyone on the scene to fulfill this prophecy. As well, Catholicism already has a long history of making images (statues) for people to worship in front of, disregarding the biblical principle against abominations to God like this. Not to mention that Catholicism already has a legacy of many documented miracles for the greater miracles predicted at the hand of the False Prophet to fit into.
Pope Will Not Be The Antichrist
Some people think that the last pope will be the Antichrist. But it is not as good a fit as the False Prophet when examined carefully. For example, notice these scriptural titles for the Antichrist:
- Daniel 9 calls him "the Prince...who shall come."
- Daniel 11 calls him "the King of the North."
- Daniel 7 and 8 call him "the little horn" among other horns...with the horns explained there to be kings or rulers.
These passages give the idea not of a religious leader, but of a prominent political ruler. If the Antichrist is going to be the head of the coming One World Government, he ought to have been a lesser political ruler already. While the pope does "rule" the Vatican principality, he is known chiefly as a spiritual leader, not the political ruler of a principality that is only 0.2 square miles containing less than 1000 subjects. Rather than being known as the "prince of the Vatican," he is known worldwide as the religious man in place of the "lamb" who wears a mitre with "two horns," just like the false prophet.
For an extra-biblical prophecy, Malachy's vision of the popes has an intriguing level of accuracy and relevance. If it's right (not saying it is), we are now one pope's tenure away from Jesus' return. This would translate to putting us two or, at most, three decades before Jesus returns which is an exciting prospect to most believers. This explains why Malachy's prophecy is so popular, even with Protestants.
Further, Bible prophecy and Malachy agree that the final pope will play a big role in the Great Tribulation. Revelation implies that the final pope will be the Antichrist's sidekick, the False Prophet. Through miracles and the Mark of the Beast he will give validity and complete support to the Antichrist. As one of the most enduring and prominent institutions in human history, the pope is uniquely positioned to influence the world so powerfully.
Nevertheless, even if two senior citizens were identified tomorrow as the Antichrist and False Prophet (no young cardinals become pope), it would still only limit the time left until Christ returns to within several decades. While thankfully in our lifetime, it's still not telling us much more than we already can know from the Bible and the current level of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East. Until the milestones identified by Bible prophecy appear, we should not expect (or fear) the end times to begin soon.
Finally, remember, this is not Bible prophecy. I'm not saying it's right. Because it is not from the Bible, it would not surprise me if Pope Francis dies suddenly and we have another pope. Then people will move on to the next "prophecy" as always. =)
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IF YOU BELIEVE NOSTRADAMUS, you will believe Malachy;
IF YOU BELIEVE ASTROLOGY, you will believe Malachy;
IF YOU BELIEVE literal interpretations of the Bible, you will believe Malachy;
IF YOU BELIEVE any foretelling of the future, you will believe Malachy.
IF YOU BELIEVE any writing or verbal forecast of our “endtimes”, you will believe Malachy.
The truth is, and we all know this, the Bible says and we know the gist, even if they don’t know it precisely, that the Bible says (more or less), “Not the angels in Heaven, nor all the saints, nor the Prophets of the Bible, not even the Son of God or the Holy Spirit, know the day, or the hour of the ‘Final Coming’ (or words to that effect) only God.” The Bible also says, and we know this, too, “Beware of false prophets.. those who claim to speak the truth and those who speak of the endtimes, and those who speak of the final day and the final hour”. So, really, are we to take this “for real”? Really? If you read the ads for “Psychic Friends”, they have the disclaimer, “For entertainment purposes only”. Everybody believes what they want to believe, it helps them keep a grip on something they trust, or claim to. Anyone who keeps close tabs on things like world events, assassinations, economy flips, climate change, the “alignment of the stars”, etc., really needs a change of scenery. These people are aging before their time, and it shows. People will say, “I’m not a false prophet, I’m just drawing conclusions from history and the news.” Right, and would they retain their audience if they didn’t put some “spin” on their “essays”? How many times has someone “foretold” the “End”? In the 19th century, the forerunner of the sect now known as “Jehovah’s Witnesses” did that, in the 1840s.. Guess what? He was wrong! Several times! How many tried it in the 20th Century? Hundreds, before and after every war in which the U.S. fought. So, I may disagree with what you choose to predict, but if someone pays money to hear the “Word” as annunciated by whoever, and nothing happens, as it won’t, I sure would want my money back! But, I could be wrong!
Acts 2:17 says And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams Malachy had a vision …plus he had a vision of the popes not the second coming of yeshua….the prophesy of the popes is that birth pains yahweh talked aboutReply
Pietro Parolin will be the 112 pope. False prophet pope francis was never official ordained as pope. Pietro Parolin is a Globalist. He will assist the Antichrist. Pope francis will step down this year. 2021Reply
Thanks for the information TM – what exciting times we live in.
We need the HOLY SPIRIT to help us discern fact from fiction.
Someone mentioned the Rev 12 Sign as well as the book of truth
that was promised to us here at the end. I found both here – https://bit.ly/2W7dJbE Thanks for this blog and allowing my post.
That Pope Francis is “Peter the Roman, who will pasture his sheep in many tribulations” is almost a certainty.
But is the tribulation(s) period span over the 3 years of Antichrist’s reign? Isn’t it only about 5 months of locust’s torturing? (which after that, everyone is either beheaded or taking the mark)
So I thought of this possibility:
True that Pope Francis is the last, legitimate Pope who pasture catholics for several months at the beginning of Antichrist’s reign. Then a pope candidate (“papabile”) will seized the position by force/illegitimately. He will be a false, illegitimate ‘Pope’ (not a real Pope), who will also serve the role of the False Prophet.
Personally I saw Cardinal Tagle a (now a Cardinal Bishop, promoted per May 1) as a serious flatterer and a dishonest person (check his videos especially when Pope Francis visited Philippines at 2015). Soon he became Pope Francis’ favourite.
There is also Fr. Michel Rodrigue’s “prophecy about the two popes” (Benedictus XVI and Francis) with similar scenario.Reply
Hello, from Sept. 2020. No one has commented on here in the last year?? I find that very interesting…
Is anyone on here saved? The Gospel is 1Corinthians 15:1-4 (KJV). Please, put your faith and trust in the atoning blood of Jesus Christ for remission of your sins, past, present and future. It is His finished work on the Cross, HIS shed blood that saves, alone.
Pope Francis IS THE ANTICHRIST !!!
He arrived on Feb. 12th, 2013.
“I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.”
After Benedict’s resignation, lightning struck St. Peter’s Basilica.
Malachi’s vision is TRUE !!!
check out these links concerning the final pope and the answer to who peter the roman is:
“In fact, I was a Catholic until I read the Bible through for myself-something I was never encouraged to do by Catholicism.”
Your continued reference that you were once a Catholic so you therefore understand Catholicism is a Lie. If you understood Catholicism, you never would have left.
I’ve read the Bible through myself and remain a Catholic. I was encouraged to do so many times by our religion.
You were never a Catholic and therefore I am offended that you think you can speak for us.Reply
Justain, just because your Catholic experience was different does not disprove mine. I would wager good money that most Catholics were like me. You need to recognize you were an exception (and probably also exceptional) to be encouraged to read your Bible by your priest and to remain a Catholic after doing so. There is a reason they don’t encourage this and instead focus on the pope and the catechism…Reply
Jesus said the Kingdom is within you. We do not need a division of 1000 different churches and ultra-wealthy churches. There is a time and a season for everything under the sun. The Vatican has been known to contain stockpiles of astrological books but do you ever hear them referenced? The Vatican Owns the L.U.C.I.F.E.R. telescope on Mt. Graham in Arizona. What are they looking at? They have a huge history of homosexual parties and child molestation charges and child sacrifices one need only look at all their statues and the serpents lining everywhere you look to know these top people were never of God. It was a money bath. Watch this if you dare this is truth the news and Vatican will never cover. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2K2aqYiUJaMReply
Apart from the Catholic prophecies, there are quite a few images/icons/building designs in the Vatican that match up to the images of Revelation and Daniel. When I look at the icons/images I always scratch my head about why they would have made those. Most will say its just a remnant of the Middle Ages, but I wonder about it. They haven’t removed any of them and continue to create disturbing images (see the Pope’s audience hall).
The dragon is present as well in an honored spot in various places – the same Roman dragon of Wales and The Order of the Dragon monarch society. I have no doubts that the Man of Sin will come from the European royalty and that the False Prophet will be the pope. Whether it is the current one or not is left to be seen.Reply
Every single non catholic commenter I have read on this prophesy all try to turn the last pope into a villian. But that is not at all what the prophesy says. It says he will Sheppard his flock during terrible times. Yet every single Christian uses this prophesy to establish the pope as a bad guy.
It’s just not the case. And it’s another example of why fundamentalism SUCKS.Reply
Timmeh, my pastor once remarked on how well the Catholic prophecies line up with the Bible as long as you remember to reverse the perspective from good to evil and evil to good. So when it says “Peter the Roman…will feed his flock amid many tribulations, after which the seven-hilled city will be destroyed and the dreadful Judge will judge the people.” Yes, the last pope will make sure those enslaved by the Antichrist during the “many Tribulations”=Great Tribulation are well fed because he wants them alive for their job like my dream revealed to me. Yes, the “dreadful judge” who is actually Jesus (!) will indeed judge those people Peter the Roman helped keep alive! He may be “dreadful” to Antichrist-worshiping Catholics, but not to the saints. Reverse it and it makes sense.Reply
Fr. Arnold Wion made this prophecy and attributed it to St. Malachy in order to avoid attention from the Roman Inquisition. In 1624 Fr. Thomas Messingham published an edited version of Wion’s list of 113 papal predictions. He combined Wion’s last two paragraphs into one thereby shortening the list to 112. Every subsequent commentator has gone by Messingham’s shortened version, and that is why everyone supposes that Pope Francis must be Petrus Romanus. But that is not the case. The prediction that applies to Francis is:
In psecutione. extrema S.R.E. sedebit.
—He will reign in the final persecution. of the Holy Roman Church.–
This ominous prediction is related to the terrible visions of Pope St. Pius X which foretold of a disaster at Vatican City which would involve both a pope and a “successor of the same name.” That successor is Joseph Ratzinger who shares a name with Giuseppe Sarto.Reply
Considering that the generation of “Her Branch” is prophesied “not to pass” the same as the generation of “His Branch” that didn’t pass,
and Her Branch restored in 1948, making 2018 the 70th year, same as His Branch. (fig tree parables)
I’d say the prophecy was “Correct”.
Oh, did I mention we’re also in the early morning hours of the “Third day” from Jesus, (7th day/Mill reign)
when Jesus said he would be “Resurrected”, or back on earth.
The more I read about Malachy’s ‘prophecy’ the more it seems to me to be a clever satanic deception. If people believe this ‘prophecy’ they will be deluded when the real false prophet arrives. He will probably be a young man, who is elevated to the Papacy, and then proceeds to argue for peace and reconciliation among all the religions of the world. He will forcefully argue that God is all religions and there is good in each one that all can agree on. Even wicca, Islam, Hinduism and any other false pagan religion in the world will join in with the rest. “Peace’ will reign. It will probably be following some sort of terrorist attack, or worse, a full scale attack by one country on another or even a world war or to the brink of said war, or even a nuke attack on some country. The young Pope who looks like a Lamb and speaks like a dragon, will oppose the Most High, and defame Jesus Christ, the True God. He will appear humble and charming. And, he will point to the antichrist as the long awaited peace bringing ‘peace’ to the whole world. People are ready for this. They are scared to death, and the governments of the world are preparing to take away self defense weapons and enslave, in a peaceful way, of course the entire planet. The people will beg for it and the charismatic young ‘Pope’ will lead them.Reply
[…] According to Malachy, the pope will reign over the “Great Tribulation” whereby there will be a great persecution of the Holy Roman Church and the destruction of the “City of Seven Hills” (Rome) leading to judgement of both the good and wicked. Although most experts arrive to this basic conclusion, there are many interpretations to the “signs” that will usher in the time of tribulation or revelations. […]Reply
Malachy said there will be 112 popes but the current pope is the 266th pope. What gives?Reply
Eric, you probably figured it out after you asked, but Malachy was born after 150 popes already came.. =)Reply
Interesting, to say the least. Have you heard of the “Book of Truth” ?Reply
Thanks. Too many books of that name. By which author and why do you ask?Reply
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