"The Honor of Kings" - Jack Kinsella - www.omegaletter.com
According to the Bible, in the last days, the whole world will come together under a single, global government. Or at least, that is the way many Christians understand it, although that is not strictly accurate.
The mental picture most of us have of the antichrist is something along the lines of a super-Hitler, wielding absolute global authority and enforcing his edicts and dictates through regularly scheduled public executions.
The Apostle John says of his religious counterpart, the False Prophet, that:
"he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed." (Revelation 13:15)
Further, John tells us that;
"he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name." (Revelation 13:16-17)
The Prophet Daniel tells us that the antichrist will be a 'prince' of the Roman Empire, and the consensus understanding of Daniel 9:26 is that it means the antichrist will be a European.
Further, he is most probably from Rome, and his partner, the False Prophet, is a global religious leader also headquartered in Rome.
I often warn of the dangers of interpreting Bible prophecy according to current events, but that doesn't preclude questioning traditional interpretations as God reveals more information.
The Proverbs tell us that,
"It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter." (Proverbs 25:2)
The Bible is a Living Book. It is also a book of progressive revelation, and while it has been sealed as complete for two thousand years, that progressive revelation has continued through the generations since.
Jesus summarized the concept of 'progressive revelation' as it applies to prophecy to His disciples, saying,
"And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe." (John 14:29)
The Apostles didn't know what He was talking about much of the time. They were blinded by the traditional interpretation that when the Messiah came, He would destroy Israel's enemies and set up an earthly kingdom.
Despite His presence among them for three years, it wasn't until after they were indwelt by His Holy Spirit at Pentecost that they began to understand all that had been revealed to them.
The Bible also tells us that as believers, we are kings and princes through Him and are honored with the authority to search out matters heretofore previously concealed.
So, with that in mind, let's challenge the conventional wisdom that the antichrist is a European and the false prophet's headquarters is the Vatican.
First, the antichrist's government is indivisible from its religion. It isn't the antichrist that issues the order to receive the Mark of the Beast.
Look at Revelation 13:15-17 again.
The False Prophet gives life to the beast, demands he be worshipped, and decrees anyone that refuses should be killed.
Then, to ENFORCE that edict, the False Prophet orders everyone "marked" to show loyalty, linking it to the ability to engage in normal buying and selling.
Hmmm. A religion that is also an economic and political system.
John tells us that the religion of the False Prophet will have two horns like a Lamb, but that it will speak like a dragon.
Hmmm. A religion that claims to be 'peaceful as a lamb', but one that preaches war and destruction?
The Bible never directly uses the word "antichrist" to describe the political Beast. 1st John says of the antichrist;
"Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son?" (1st John 2:22)
Hmmm. A religion of global power, that claims to be one of peace and love, that preaches war and death, and denies that God has a Son?
"Anti-Christ" - the simple understanding of the phrase is, 'against-Christ' the way anti-abortion means 'against abortion' or anti-American means 'against America'.
Hmmm again. A religion dedicated to making war with Christ.
The Prophet Daniel reveals of the antichrist, "by peace he shall destroy many." The Apostle John pictures him in Revelation 6:2 as a rider on a white horse, armed with a bow, but with no arrows.
Four fourteen hundred years, Christians interpreted this religion as being ruled from the Vatican. Why?
Because for fourteen hundred years, the Vatican had that kind of power. That was THEIR interpretation based on their understanding of what were-then current events.
But in this generation, when one 'searches out the matter' and overlays a religion most of us knew nothing about a decade ago, one gets an entirely different Big Picture.
One of the conveyers of Hadith, Ka'b al Ahbar is quoted as saying:
"I find the Mahdi recorded in the books of the Prophets... For instance, the Book of Revelation says: "And I saw and behold a white horse. He that sat on him...went forth conquering and to conquer."
The Bible tells us that it is the political Beast, or antichrist, that confirms a seven year covenant with Israel. Daniel says the agreement is abrogated halfway through.
The Islamic Hadith says that the Mahdi will mediate a seven-year peace hudna through a Jewish Priest from the lineage of Aaron.
According to Muhammad Ali ibn Zubair, while speaking of the time that the Mahdi's will come to reign and rule, Mohammed the 'prophet' said this:
"There will be four peace agreements between you and 'the Romans' [or "the Western powers" -ed].
The fourth and last treaty will be mediated through a person who will be from the progeny of Hadrat Aaron [Honorable Aaron, the brother of Moses] - ed and will be upheld for seven years.
The people asked, "O Prophet Muhammad, who will be the imam (leader or Mahdi) of the people at that time?" The Prophet said: He will be from my progeny and will be exactly forty years of age. His face will shine like a star."
According to the Apostle John, there are two distinct penalties for refusing to accept the Mark of the Beast.
The first penalty mentioned is death (Revelation 13:15) -- by decapitation! (Revelation 20:4)
The second penalty is social:
"that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name." (Revelation 13:17)
Islam proscribes two penalties for unbelievers. Those who refuse to submit are to be decapitated, and those who agree to submit are marked as dhimmis - social outcasts with no legal standing, no rights of ownership, and no rights of citizenship.
Finally, the over-arching theme of the Book of the Revelation is the persecution of Israel, the destruction of the Jews, and the eradication of Christianity.
The religious duty of the Muslim 'umma' (worldwide Muslim community) is the elimination of Israel, the destruction of the Jews and the overspreading of Islam, by force, if necessary, to the Christian world.
Islam divides the world into two zones, the Zone of Islam (dar al Islam) and the Zone of War (dar al harb). If you aren't in one, you're in the other.
As to Daniel's identification of the antichrist as a prince of the Roman Empire, continental Europe, already nicknamed 'Eurasia,' continues to reel under the weight of Muslim immigration.
It is estimated that, at current rates, Europe will become majority Muslim within a generation.
All this challenges conventional wisdom, and I am therefore not prepared to be dogmatic about any of it.
I am mindful of the danger of dogmatically interpreting prophecy in light of current events.
But I am also mindful that the conventional interpretation of Europe and the Vatican is ALSO the product of fourteen hundred years of interpretation based on what were-then current events.
"And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand." (Daniel 12:8-10)
"For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known." (Luke 12:2)
I've just scratched the surface insofar as the similarities between Islam and the predictions concerning the A/C's government, but they are intriguing enough to be worth further exploration.
We'll keep searching out the matter together and see where it leads us.