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The Inhuman Inquisition!

It's a fact of history!

SPIRITUAL DARKNESS IN THE MIDDLE AGES #11


The INHUMAN IN QUISITION

by Ralph Woodrow


     SO OPENLY CORRUPT did the fallen church become in the Middle
Ages, we can readily understand why in many places men rose up in
protest. Many were those noble souls who rejected the false
claims of the Pope, looking instead to the Lord Jesus for
salvation and truth. These were called "heretics" and were
bitterly persecuted by the Roman Catholic Church.
     One of the documents that ordered such persecutions was the
inhuman "Ad exstirpanda" issued by Pope Innocent IV in 1252. This
document stated that heretics were to be "crushed like venomous
snakes." It formally approved the use of torture. Civil
authorities were ordered to burn heretics. "The aforesaid Bull
'Ad exstirpanda' remained thenceforth a fundamental document of
the Inquisition, renewed or reinforced by several Popes,
Alexander IV (1254-61), Clement IV (1265-68), Nicholas IV
(1288-92), Boniface VIII (1294-1303), and others. The civil
authorities, therefore, were enjoined by the Popes, under pain of
excommunication to execute the legal sentences that condemned
impenitent heretics to the stake. It is to be noted that
excommunication itself was no trifle, for, if the person
excommunicated did not free himself from the excommunication
within a year, he was held by the legislation of that period to
be a heretic, and incurred all the penalties that affected
heresy."
     Men pondered long in those days on how they could devise
methods that would produce the most torture and pain. One of the
most popular methods was the use of the rack, a long table on
which the accused was tied by the hands and feet, back down, and
stretched by rope and windlass. This process dislocated joints
and caused great pain.

     Heavy pincers were used to tear out fingernails or were
applied red-hot to sensitive parts of the body. Rollers with
sharp knife blades and spikes were used, over which the heretics
were rolled back and forth. There was the thumbscrew, an
instrument made for disarticulating fingers and "Spanish boots"
which were used to crush the legs and feet. The "iron virgin" was
a hollow instrument the size and figure of a woman. Knives were
arranged in such a way and under such pressure that the accused
were lacerated in its deadly embrace. This torture device was
sprayed with "holy water" and inscribed with the Latin words
meaning, "Glory be only to God."

     Victims after being stripped of their clothing had their
arms tied behind their backs with a hard cord. Weights were
attached to their feet. The action of a pulley suspended them in
mid-air or dropped and raised them with a jerk, dislocating
joints of the body. While such torture was being employed,
priests holding up crosses would attempt to get the heretics to
recant.
     Ridpath's "History of the World" includes an illustration of
the work of the Inquisition in the Netherlands. Twenty-one
Protestants are hanging from the tree. A man on a ladder is about
to be hanged, below him is a priest holding a cross.

"In the year 1554 Francis Gamba, a Lombard, of the Protestant
persuasion, was apprehended and condemned to death by the
sentence of Milan. At the place of execution, a monk presented a
cross to him, to whom Gamba said, 'My mind is so full of the real
merits and goodness of Christ that I want not a piece of
senseless stick to put me in mind of Him.' For this expression
his tongue was bored through and he was afterwards burned."

     Some who rejected the teachings of the Roman church had
molten lead poured into their ears and mouths. Eyes were gouged
out and others were cruelly beaten with whips. Some were forced
to jump from cliffs onto long spikes fixed below, where,
quivering from pain, they slowly died. Others were choked to
death with mangled pieces of their own bodies, with urine, or
excrement. At night, the victims of the Inquisition were chained
closely to the floor or wall where they were a helpless prey to
the rats and vermin that populated those bloody torture chambers.
The religious intolerance that prompted the Inquisition caused
wars which involved entire cities. In 1209 the city of Beziers
was taken by men who have been promised by the Pope that by
engaging in the crusade against heretics they would at death
bypass purgatory and immediately enter heaven. Sixty thousand, it
is reported, in this city perished by the sword while blood
flowed in the streets. At Lavaur in 1211 the governor was hanged
on a gibbet and his wife thrown into a well and crushed with
stones. Four hundred people in this town were burned alive. The
crusaders attended high mass in the morning, then proceeded to
take other towns of the area. In this siege, it is estimated that
100,000 Albigenses (Protestants) fell in one day. Their bodies
were heaped together and burned.
     At the massacre of Merindol, five hundred women were locked
in a barn which was set on fire. If any leaped from windows, they
were received on the points of spears. Women were openly and
pitifully violated. Children were murdered before their parents
who were powerless to protect them. Some people were hurled from
cliffs or stripped of clothing and dragged through the streets.
Similar methods were used in the massacre of Orange in 1562. The
Italian army was sent by Pope Pius IV and commanded to slay men,
women, and children. The command was carried out with terrible
cruelty, the people being exposed to shame and torture of every
description.

     Ten thousand Huguenots (Protestants) were killed in the
bloody massacre in Paris on "St.Bartholomew's Day", 1572. The
French king went to mass to return solemn thanks that so many
heretics were slain. The Papal court received the news with great
rejoicing and Pope GregoryXIII, in grand procession, went to the
Church of St.Louis to give thanks! He ordered the Papal mint to
make coins commemorating this event. The coins showed an angel
with sword in one hand and a cross in the other, before whom a
band of Huguenots, with horror on their faces, were fleeing. The
words Ugo no ttorum Stranges 1572 which signify "The slaughter of
the Huguenots, 1572", appeared on the coins.
     An illustration from Ridpath's "History of the World," as
seen on the next page, shows the work of the Inquisition in
Holland. A Protestant man is hanging by his feet in stocks. The
fire is heating a poker to brand him and blind his eyes. 

     Some of the Popes that today are acclaimed as "great" by the
Romish church lived and thrived during those days. Why didn't
they open the dungeon doors and quench the murderous fires that
blackened the skies of Europe for centuries? If the selling of
indulgences, or people worshipping statues as idols, or Popes
living in immorality can be explained as "abuses" or excused
because these things were done contrary to the official laws of
the church, what can be said about the Inquisition? It cannot be
explained away as easily, for though sometimes torture was
carried out beyond what was actually prescribed, the fact remains
that the Inquisition was ordered by Papal decree and confirmed by
Pope after Pope! Can any believe that such actions were
representative of Him who said to turn the cheek, to forgive our
enemies, and to do good to them that despitefully use you.

                           .....................


It is a fact of recorded history, what the Roman church did, or
ordered to be done, to so-called "heretics" in the Middle Ages.
It is truly mind-bending that this Roman Catholic church has even
one memember today, with all the recorded history of its sins,
brutality, violence, and wickedness. Yet, she today has OVER ONE
BILLION members worldwide. It is proof indeed as to how deceptive
Satan the Devil has been through the centuries.

Keith Hunt

To be continued with "Lords Over God's Heritage"

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