Home > Radical Islam, Theology and Eschatology > The Mark of the Beast – What Your Church May Not Be Telling You

The Mark of the Beast – What Your Church May Not Be Telling You


By ICA

Revelation 13:16-17, “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”

A literal and physical mark, or something else?The most popular view today regarding the Mark of the Beast in Revelation 13 is that it is a literal mark physically placed in the forehead or right hand of those who worship Antichrist. Many teachers of Biblical eschatology will even refer to modern 21st century technology and point to some type of tattoo or implantable microchip under the skin when attempting to explain the mark.  But why?  What is in the text that leads many to believe that this mark must be physical when, after all, virtually every one of us would agree that while the book of Revelation speaks about the dragon, the Beast, the “Whore of Babylon” or the mark of Christ upon the elect etc. that these descriptions are not referring to a literal dragon, a literal animal, a literal prostitute or a literal seal of Christ? This is obviously figurative language pointing to something completely different.  On the other hand, so to speak, is there anything from Scripture to indicate for us that this mark need not be a physical mark at all, but could instead be something else entirely?

After careful consideration, I believe that the Mark of the Beast is very likely a spiritual mark just as the mark of Christ upon the elect is spiritual.  Since many will resist the suggestion that a figurative Beast will also have a figurative mark, despite the fact that there is nothing in the text stating that the Mark of the Beast must be physical, it is important to rightly divide the Word of God and study, from the whole of Scripture, the significance of the hand and head and how it often relates to man’s condition in the Biblical text.

Arguments Against a Figurative or Spiritual Mark

First, however, let’s begin with arguments that are often issued against a figurative or spiritual mark.  Some will contend that if John literally saw a mark in the forehead and hand of those who worshiped the Beast then it must therefore have been literal and physical. This, however, is a poor argument considering that John “saw” the seal of God upon the foreheads of the elect as well, yet everyone agrees this seal is spiritual in nature. Since we know that the seal of God is not literal, “seeing” the mark in the forehead of those who worshiped the Beast likewise does not mean that it must be a physical, literal mark.

Others may argue that because John used the word “charagma” (G5480) for “mark” which means “a stamp, an imprinted mark” that it must refer to a literal mark because it is physical by definition, but this — again — is another example of poor argumentation because John employs many other words throughout Revelation that refer to something physical by definition yet uses them figuratively as symbols of something else entirely. For example:

Revelation 13:17 – the beast – “therion” G2342 – an animal, a wild beast
Revelation 12:3 – Dragon – “drakon” G1404 – a dragon, a great serpent
Revelation 12:3 – horns – “keras” G2768 – a horn; of animals
Revelation 12:3 – crowns – “diadema” G1238 – a diadem; a kingly ornament, crown
Revelation 14:4 – Lamb – “arnion” G721 – a little lamb, a lamb

Art used by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.

Art used by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.

According to the “charagma = physical mark” argument, the Beast should be literal. The dragon should be literal. The ten horns on the head of the dragon, the crowns, the lamb, etc. etc etc. should all be literal because the words that John used refer to things that are physical by definition.  We would all agree, however, that these are figurative.  It does not stand to reason that the figurative dragon, with the seven figurative heads, ten figurative horns and a figurative crown upon each figurative horn — a figurative dragon who hates the figurative woman and who gives power to the figurative Beast that opposes the figurative lamb (a figurative lamb who figuratively marks those who follow the figurative lamb with a figurative seal) — puts a literal, physical mark upon those who worship the figurative Beast. The song “One Of These Things (Is Not Like The Other)” comes to mind, doesn’t it? It makes much more sense that the word “mark (charagma)” is used figuratively by John, just as “lamb (arnion)” and “crowns (diadema)” and “horns (keras)” and many others all refer to something physical and tangible that we can identify with. All are symbolic or spiritual, not literal and physical.

The Significance of the Head and Hand, and Being ‘Marked’ in Scripture

As for the significance of being ‘marked’ in the head or hand, let’s review a few portions of Scripture that refer to the head and hand and what these terms mean in those specific contexts.

Exodus 13:9 says, “And it shall serve AS A SIGN to you on your hand, and AS A REMINDER to you on your forehead, that the law of the LORD may be in your mouth; for with a powerful hand the LORD brought you out of Egypt.”

The Lord said that His words are to be as a sign on our hand, and as frontals on our foreheads. The word “as” is “used to express similarity or equality in a specified characteristic, condition, etc., as between one person or thing and another.” It means “like” or “similar to.”

Sign: H226 Strong’s Bible Dictionary “ôth” – Probably from H225 (in the sense of appearing); a signal, as a flag, beacon, monument, omen, prodigy, evidence, etc.: – mark, miracle, (en-) sign, token.

Deuteronomy 6:5-8, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them AS A SIGN ON YOUR HAND and they shall be AS FRONTALS ON YOUR FOREHEAD.”

Deuteronomy 11:18, “Therefore you shall lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and bind them AS A SIGN ON YOUR HAND, and they shall be AS FRONTLETS BETWEEN YOUR EYES.”

James 4:8, “Come near to God and he will come near to you. WASH YOUR HANDS, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you DOUBLE-MINDED.”

Psalms 119:48, “My HANDS ALSO I WILL LIFT UP to Your commandments, Which I love, And I will MEDIATE ON YOUR STATUTES.”

Instead of interpreting Scripture to conform to our understanding, we must allow our understanding to conform to Scripture. When Scripture is permitted to interpret itself we’ll then begin to see why the Mark of the Beast need not be literal at all, but is instead simply an identifying mark upon the head or forehead to represent the mind, what you believe, your faith, how you think, and in the right hand to represent actions, works, what you do. There is nothing in the text necessitating a physical and visible mark upon the forehead or right hand as in a microchip or tattoo or anything else that a people or government can physically place therein or upon. It just doesn’t exist.

The Mark of the Beast – A Closer Look

Aside from those who worship the Beast, the only other figure in the book of Revelation directly related to the Beast and described as having a mark or name upon their forehead is one who many Bible scholars and prophecy teachers refer to as the “Whore of Babylon.”  This “woman” is described as being carried by the Beast (17:7), and all agree she is figurative and identified by the name upon her forehead. This alone should beg the question: If the name marked upon the forehead of this “woman” is figurative to designate identity, would this not then infer that the Mark of the Beast is itself also a figurative mark to designate identity, especially considering the fact that the mark of God upon the foreheads of the elect is itself also figurative to designate identity (Rev 7:3, Rev 9:4, Rev 14:1, Rev 22:3-4)?  Common sense would dictate that, yes, it would.

In Scripture, the seal of God upon the forehead of the elect refers to those who keep the commandments of God and who do not worship the Beast.  Conversely, those who have the Mark of the Beast would therefore be identified with those who worship the Beast and do not worship God. This would be the direct antithesis to the mark of Christ and symbolic of worship, of allegiance, of identity to permit all readers of Revelation to know to whom the individual or group belongs to and to whom their allegiance lies.  And for those with the Mark of the Beast, it is not with YHWH the God of Israel. Just as those who worship Christ receive the mark of Christ and are “sealed for the day of redemption” (Eph. 4:30), those who worship the Beast receive the Mark of the Beast and will “drink of the wine of the wrath of God” (Rev. 14:9-10) and suffer the same fate as the “Whore of Babylon”: destruction.

The Beast Carries the “Whore of Babylon” – Who Is She?

In chapter 5 of the book of Zechariah we read about a vision that Zechariah was given of a flying scroll and a “wicked woman”.  An angel tells Zechariah that “This is the curse that is going out over the whole land” at the appointed time (5:3,11). The Prophet Zechariah then writes that “the angel who was speaking to me came forward and said to me, ‘Look up and see what this is that is appearing.’ I asked, ‘What is it?’ He replied, ‘It is a measuring basket.’ And he added, ‘This is the iniquity of the people throughout the land.’ Then the cover of lead was raised, and there in the basket sat a woman” (Zech 5:5-7).  Zechariah continues, “He said, ‘This is wickedness,’ and he pushed her back into the basket and pushed the lead cover down over its mouth. Then I looked up–and there before me were two women, with the wind in their wings! They had wings like those of a stork, and they lifted up the basket between heaven and earth. ‘Where are they taking the basket?’ I asked the angel who was speaking to me. He replied, ‘To the country of Babylonia to build a house for it. When it is ready, the basket will be set there in its place.’” (Zech 5:8-11).

babylon-empire-map2Of particular interest here is the fact that this “curse” is described as a “woman” who would be set up in “Babylon” (Shin’ar). The Babylonian Empire encompassed areas of Saudi Arabia (the birthplace and spiritual homestead of Islam) to the south, to parts of Asia Minor (Turkey) in the north, and from Egypt in the west to Persia (Iran) in the east. This area is today the regional epicenter of Islam. Additionally, one intriguing aspect to the “curse” that goes out over the whole land is that the word for “curse”, and even how it is pronounced, is the Hebrew word “alah”. The Prophet Isaiah, in describing the condition of the earth at the time leading up to the Second Coming of Messiah, says that “the curse [alah] has devoured the earth, And those who dwell in it are desolate” (Isa 24:6).  To dwell in the earth does not in and of itself make one “desolate”. But the same cannot be said for those who dwell in the “curse.”

There should be little doubt that the “woman” of Zechariah 5 that would have a house built for it in Babylon directly represents the “Whore of Babylon” referred to earlier. Over 600 years after Zechariah’s vision of the end times, John in Revelation 17 is given a vision of the future and of “the great harlot who sits on many waters … And on her forehead a name [was] written: MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH” (17:1,5).  Given the fact that the “Whore of Babylon” directly represents the curse (alah), is being carried by the Beast, and is herself marked with a name upon her forehead, does it not stand to reason that the Mark of the Beast would therefore be associated with, or directly related to, the “woman” and “curse” (alah) prophesied by Zechariah and John?

Narrowing It Down and Zooming In

Moreover, let’s also consider the following. The Church of God — the assembly of His people — is called the “Ekklesia” in Scripture and in terms of location is identified with Jerusalem, Israel. This is the epicenter of the Judeo-Christian faith. If the “Bride” of the Lamb is identified as a city called “Jerusalem” (Rev. 21:9-10, “Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife… and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God”) then does it not stand to reason that the “Whore of Babylon” would also be associated with a city of its own? From the preponderance of the evidence that we are given throughout Scripture, the “whore” identified by John in Revelation is associated with the epicenter of Islam itself. And what would that be? The city of Mecca. Whereas the Judeo-Christian faith came out of Jerusalem, Islam came out of Mecca, the birthplace of “Allah’s religion” and the spiritual city of the “Ummah”.  She is the “whore of Babylon”. “Babylon” is the Islamic kingdom. The Islamic kingdom is the Beast. (And for what it’s worth, Mecca is known as a “city of seven hills” in the Muslim world).

Babylon: Spiritual Confusion and the Quagmire of Islam

The name Babylon written upon the forehead of this “woman” comes from the Hebrew word Babel, which means “confusion (by mixing)”. Since the region of ancient Babylon is today the epicenter of Islam and its god “Allah”, it is befitting to note a brief history of the founder and ‘prophet’ of Islam, Mohammed, and his self-proclaimed holy book, the Qur’an.

In an effort to entice Jewish and Christian converts to Islam, Islam’s ‘prophet’ incorporated a twisted mix of Jewish and Christian teachings with the existing Babylonian religion of Arabia early in his campaign to gain adherents to his “new” monotheistic Arab religion (formerly polytheistic), even going so far as to claim that “Allah” was the same god that Jews and Christians worshiped [1].  But Jews and Christians would not be deceived and, already familiar with the polytheistic religion of the Romans and their Greek gods, understood full well that just as abolishing all other Greek gods except Zeus would not suddenly make Zeus the God of Israel, neither would abolishing all Babylonian gods except for the moon god “Allah” suddenly make Mohammed’s god the God of Jews and Christians. This complete rejection of Mohammed and his teachings infuriated the ‘prophet’ of “Allah”, resulting in subsequent “revelations” for the Qur’an for the next 20 or so years that grew increasingly hateful and violent against Jews, Christians and all non-Muslims in general. This twisted mixing of Judeo-Christian teachings, Babylonian paganism and vengeful anti-Semitic and anti-Christian hatred is what permeates every crevice of Islam, even today.

 

Islam – Belief, Behavior, Bureaucracy, and Business

According to Islam, anyone who believes that Jesus was God in the flesh who died on the cross for the sins of mankind, a foundational tenet upon which Christianity is built, is accused of committing the worst of all possible sins called “shirk”. In Islam, this is an unpardonable sin that “Allah” will never forgive. In Christianity it is the key to everlasting life. But although Islam includes religious teachings as a vital, integral part of its core — Muslims must pray five times a day, and the only way for any Muslim to guarantee Paradise after death is to wage Jihad and be killed for the cause of “Allah” — it is not just simply a religious ideology that seeks to assert itself in place of Christ and all other religions. It is also a works-based system that completely encompasses legal, political, economic and even military components as well that seek to replace all other non-Islamic religions, values, laws, governments and economies until only Islam reigns supreme throughout the world [3]. Not only does Islam force its adherents to submit to “Allah” and his ‘prophet’ and demand that you reject any belief that Jesus is the Son of God and all other non-Islamic teachings, it also teaches that “Allah” weighs the good deeds and bad deeds of Muslims on a scale to determine who makes it into Paradise, and who does not.

In contrast, notice how we as Christians only receive a mark on our foreheads when we are sealed by God. Why not in our right hand as well? Unlike Islam, which is based upon works, Christians are saved by grace through faith, by being born again, by believing in the true Jesus of Biblical Scripture who died upon the cross, by being transformed by the renewal of our mind. We are not saved by works, lest any one should boast (Eph 2:9).

No One Can Buy or Sell Unless They Have the ‘Mark’

The biggest question that many will have regarding a symbolic mark is, “If the Mark of the Beast is only symbolic, how can those who do not have a literal mark not buy or sell?” This is often used as well by some as an argument against a figurative mark, arguing that any such mark must be visible and/or physical if it is required in order to buy or sell.  However, the answer to this question is much simpler than many may think.

When it comes to the conditions that exist in many Islamic nations for Christians, Dr. Labib Mikhail, a former professor of homiletics from the Faith Mission Bible College in Cairo, Egypt, states that one reason why people are forced to embrace Islam is because of the poverty they will assuredly find themselves in if they do not. “If you don’t embrace Islam you may not find a job; you may not find an apartment, and you’ll be in financial trouble” [4].  Non-Muslims, particularly Christians and Jews, living in Muslim-dominated countries are finding themselves subjected to an ever increasing wave of discrimination, oppression and persecution at the hands of the Ummah (Islamic Community).  Even today a Christian in a Muslim country is often treated as a second-class citizen or worse, unable to serve in the military or police, many cannot work or own a business, or even find a place to live. They cannot own a weapon to defend themselves, nor can they testify against a Muslim in court, etc. etc. etc. [5].  And this type of treatment is getting worse, not better. (Update: Read here to find out just how much worse this has become in 2011 alone).

According to NIFCON (Network for Inter Faith Concerns) in Iraq, for example, minorities have faced a tremendous crisis due to their religious identity and are increasingly becoming targets of unprecedented terror. Canon Andrew White, vicar of St. George’s Anglican Church in Bagdad and head of the Foundation for Reconciliation and Reconstruction in the Middle East, testified as a witness in 2007 at a hearing that Christians, in particular, “are being disproportionately targeted” and many Christians are being threatened either to convert to Islam or face execution [6].  In fact, in April 2011, “an Iraqi Muslim scholar issued a fatwa that, among other barbarities, asserts that ‘it is permissible to spill the blood of Iraqi Christians.’ … Among other atrocities, beheading and crucifying Christians are not irregular occurrences; messages saying ‘you Christian dogs, leave or die,’ are typical. Islamists see the church as an ‘obscene nest of pagans’ and threaten to ‘exterminate Iraqi Christians.'” [7].

Think about this very carefully. According to the Greek text of Revelation 13:17-18 it isn’t just someone who hasn’t received the “Mark of the Beast” on the right hand or forehead that cannot buy or sell. In order to buy or sell they must have the Mark of the Beast *or* the name of the Beast *or* the number of its name. In other words, those able to buy or sell are counted among the number of they who submit to the authority of the Beast empire or kingdom, not because they have been physically marked in the right hand or forehead for all to see, but because they are considered one of them ideologically or culturally or religiously in speech and practise. Consider these recent new stories, for instance:

And these are simply some of the incidents that we know about.

On one hand, while many are coming face to face with the threat of death for not converting to Islam, other Christians elsewhere are threatened to convert in other ways that, for some, make life extremely difficult.  In many Islamic nations, for instance, everyone must be given an ID card and this ID card specifies what religion you are, such as “M” for Muslim or “C” for Christian or “J” for Jew.  For example, “Christian converts and members of minority religions suffer daily discrimination in Egypt, which restricts their access to work, education, travel and healthcare… Every Egyptian over 16 years old must have an ID card which mentions religious belief”. In fact, “an ID card is required for the most basic needs in Egypt — to open a bank account, get a driver’s licence, obtain a pension cheque, enrol at school, get a job, and even for childhood immunisations…” Some Muslims will convert to another faith other than Christianity, but “Muslims who convert to Christianity account for many more and their treatment is often harsher as they are considered to be apostates, which some Muslims see as punishable by death” [8].  And now, since the fall of Hosni Mubarak and the rise of the ‘Egyptian Revolution,’ the situation has worsened dramatically for Jews and Christians.  This is where Islamic supremacy veiled in a cloak of ‘democracy’ will take you in a country where Islam is the overwhelming, dominant religion.  It’s like Sunni and Shia.  It’s like iron and clay.  Democracy and Islamism will never fully mix.

These sort of conditions exist for Jews and Christians all throughout North Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere where Islam dominates or seeks domination, from the Ivory Coast to Nigeria, Sudan, Ethiopia, TunisiaGaza, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Pakistan, Iran, Malaysia, Indonesia, The Maldives, Bangladesh and others.

When we begin to understand the dire social and economic conditions that Christians are increasingly facing in Islamic nations we then begin to understand that they who will not be able to buy or sell, or are targeted for execution, are those Christians that refuse to submit to Islam both in mind (forehead) and in deed (right hand) yet are forced to remain in Islamic nations during the rise of the Beast. How can a non-Muslim “infidel” — who is often threatened with death — buy or sell if they are not permitted to work and earn money, if they are not granted permits to open a business, if the superior Muslim will refuse to sell to the inferior “dhimmi”?  As bad as this situation is now, it is only going to get worse.

Chi-Xi-Stigma — In The Name of Allah?

Revelation 13:18, “Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number [is] Six hundred threescore [and] six.”

Someone asked me once if I believed Walid Shoebat’s theory regarding Revelation 13:18 and “666”. Shoebat says that when he first saw the Greek symbols that are often translated as “666” he immediately recognized that the Greek text closely resembled the Arabic text for “Bismillah”, which translates to “In The Name Of Allah.” His theory is interesting and is something to consider.  At the very least, it is prudent to have an open mind to this position, especially given the likelihood that the Mark of the Beast is, in some way, directly related to Islam.   Mr. Shoebat and Chuck Missler speak about this possible aspect of chi-xi-stigma here in the following two videos, respectively:

Sunan Ibn Majah 2763, “The Messenger of Allah [Mohammed] said: ‘Whoever meets Allah with no mark on him (as a result of fighting) in His cause, he will meet Him with deficiency.”

Although I believe that the Mark of the Beast is primarily a spiritual designator, much like the mark of Christ that is upon the foreheads of the elect, that is not to say, however, that there cannot or will not at times also be a physical indicator that could identify the spiritual designation.  In addition to the “battle marks” received while waging Jihad or the “zebibah” (prayer mark) on the foreheads of many devout Muslims, Jihadists typically wear the “Bismallah” on the forehead and on the right arm, which itself is significant because the Greek word translated as “right hand” is dexios which not only means the right hand, but also the right side (the right hand side). In fact, even the Hebrew word “yad” means both hand and arm [7].

Exegetically and hermeneutically, the “number” (arithmos) of the beast does not necessitate the use of mathematics or gammatria to “reckon” (understand) what it is, something that many prophecy teachers often fall into. The word “arithmos” is used a total of 18 times in the NT, and aside from Rev 5:11 when John refers to the number of living beings he witnesses around the throne of God, every other time “arithmos” is used it is always referring to a group of people. This is significant because it therefore means that the Greek text is better understood as “the multitude of the beast: for it is the multitude of a man.” But what multitude of people would that be and what man are they all following? There is nothing in the text telling us that the man referred to here must be someone alive at that specific time or an end-of-days Antichrist. So what and who is John the Revelator referring to? Significantly, as noted above, “chi-xi-stigma” (often translated as “666”) closely resembles the Arabic Bismallah, which translates to “In The Name Of Allah”. In order to convert to “Allah’s” religion, however, one must recite the Islamic statement of faith, called the Shahada, by declaring that “There is no god but Allah, and MOHAMMED is his messenger.” Without Christ, there can be no Christianity. Likewise, without Mohammed, there can be no Islam.

Think about it.

One of the reasons why Muslims hate Christianity is because Christianity associates Jesus with God, making Jesus a co-equal partner with the Almighty. According to Islam, this is called “shirk” and is an unpardonable sin that “Allah” will never forgive. The truth of the matter, however, is that Islam itself also associates the “prophet” Mohammed — whom Muslims claim to be the most “perfect man” to ever walk the face of the earth — with “Allah” himself. On one hand, Islam teaches that “Allah” has no partners, but then contradicts itself by teaching that someone cannot become a Muslim unless they acknowledge that “There is no God but Allah and Mohammed is his messenger” per the Shahada. Unless one acknowledges Mohammed they cannot become a Muslim. In Islam, a Muslim’s “salvation” is therefore entirely determined by their obedience and devotion to Mohammed, effectively elevating the “prophet” of Islam to the same co-equal status of Islam’s own deity. To acknowledge “Allah” is not enough. You MUST acknowledge the “perfect man” Mohammed as well, and failure to do so means that they cannot be counted as part of the Ummah of Islam (Islamic community or nation).

The multitude of the Beast, which is the multitude of a man, are those who receive the “Mark of the Beast” upon their “foreheads” and are destined for destruction. This is the direct antithesis to the “great multitude” of Rev 7 and 14, which is the multitude of the Lamb that receives the seal of God upon their “foreheads” (Rev 7:3, 14:1) and are destined for redemption (cf Eph 4:30). One multitude is lost and separated from Christ forever (Rev 14:11), the other is saved and received unto Christ (Rev 7:15-17, 19:6-9, 22:2-5) to be with Him always. In light of what we have just learned, it therefore stands to reason that “the multitude of a man” is not referring to an eschatonic Antichrist, but rather to Mohammed — the founder and “prophet” of Islam — and those who follow him whose teachings even today continues to force all those under Islamic rule to worship “Allah” who should otherwise be killed if they refuse.

Revelation 13:15, “The second beast was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that the image could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed.”

Knowing that the mark of Christ includes a name upon the seal, it therefore makes sense that the Mark of the Beast could also have a name upon its seal as well. If it is plausible that what John saw was Arabic for “In The Name of Allah” for those who worship the Beast — the antithesis of those who worship God and are sealed with the name of Christ written on their foreheads — then in stark contrast those who worship the Beast and follow the religion of Mohammed could have the name of “Allah” upon theirs, and there would be no doubt about who belongs to who. Interestingly enough, the Qur’an itself at times emphasizes the significance of a Muslim’s forehead being marked during the worship of “Allah” — a mark that is required in order to be saved from hellfire per the Hadith — and how their works will be judged by what is in their right hand on the Day of Judgment:

Qur’an Sura 48:29, “Muhammad is the messenger of Allah. And those with him are hard against the disbelievers … The mark of them is on their foreheads from the traces of prostration …”

Qur’an Sura 18:49, “And the Book (one’s Record) will be placed (in the right hand for a believer in the Oneness of Allah, and in the left hand for a disbeliever in the Oneness of Allah) …”

Qur’an Sura 69:19, “Then, as for him who is given his record in his right hand, he will say: Take, read my book!”

Qur’an Sura 57:12, “On that day [of judgement] you will see the faithful men and the faithful women [Muslims] — their light running before them and on their right hand …”

Needless to say, anyone standing before God with a “mark” on their foreheads other than the seal of Christ will face eternal damnation when the books recording what they had done are opened:

Revelation 20:12, 15, “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books … Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.”

Revelation 14:11, “And the smoke of their torment will rise for ever and ever. There will be no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and its image, or for anyone who receives the mark of its name.”

To Whom Do You Belong?

Revelation 22:3-4, “And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name [shall be] in their foreheads.” (See also Rev 14:1).

The Ekklesia is “Jerusalem” — the Bride of Christ — and is identified with the kingdom of God. The Ummah is “Mecca” — the “Whore of Babylon” — and is identified with the kingdom of the Beast. It is no secret that al-Qaeda and all like-minded Sunni and Shia terror organizations despise the “apostate” kingdom of Saud, not to mention Iran — a state-sponsor of terror — that is well on its way to obtaining nuclear weapons. These are they who “hate the harlot and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire” (Rev 17:16). The “Whore of Babylon” has spread radical Islamic ideology throughout the earth and the Beast that she has ridden throughout the centuries will soon turn on her to devour the hand that fed it.

New insights into Scripture and a review of developments being witnessed on a near daily basis in the Muslim world has lead a growing number of Christians to now recognize that Islam is the religious system of the Last Day’s Antichrist [be it a man or a system] and ideology of the Beast. It is the Adversary’s aim to corrupt and destroy anything that God has created, and this “curse” [alah] is his weapon of mass destruction.  There should be no doubt today that we are in the last of the Last Days and as we can see every day in the media, the Judeo-Christian West is being bombarded by the steadily encroaching tentacles of Sharia influence as Islamists take advantage of the West’s accommodating naivete and political correctness by using and abusing the very same democratic freedoms they seek to destroy.  While seeking the destruction of the West from within, it is getting increasingly dire for Jews and Christians in the Islamic world. The Beast of this Islamic Empire is coalescing. It is gaining in strength militarily. The Islamist ideology espoused by Al Qaeda and its ilk has metastasized since 9/11 throughout the Muslim world and is seeking to force as many non-Muslims as possible into Islamic submission.  Within this kingdom, laws are being enforced or implemented in accordance to Sharia Law to produce your ID card and/or prove you are Muslim in order to buy or sell. If anyone wants to have any semblance of a life they will be forced to convert to Islam if they have not already done so. It may even get to the point where one will be unable to obtain an ID card if they are not Muslim. Want a job? Prove you’re a Muslim. Want a bank account? Prove you’re a Muslim. Want a credit card? A business? A place to live? Prove that you are a Muslim. As radicalization continues to take hold it will also get to the point where either you convert, or you are killed.  Indeed, many areas are already at this point today.

Revised 2/10/2015
  1. 08/03/2011 at 1:45 PM

    OK, OK, I give up. Again.

    For we who have believed enter that rest… (Heb 4:3)

    I rest…

    Like

  2. 08/03/2011 at 3:44 PM

    AHF – I also agree that the sea is the nations (gentiles) out of which the beast rises. Definitely could be the nations that are now in turmoil.

    The below verses agree with this line of thought as does Jer 50 and 51 when Jer speaks about the waters of Babylon – I am getting the feeling that the prostitue may be the RCC – other wise who could it be that the beast could hate, makes no sense to hate yor own religion unless it could be the Sunni / Shiite sects which are always at logger heads.

    Rev 17:15 Then the angel said to me, “The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages.Rev 17:16 The beast and the ten horns you saw will hate the prostitute. They will bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and burn her with fire.

    Like

  3. Anonymous
    08/03/2011 at 6:13 PM

    I still lean toward Mecca being the harlot. The city has been attacked before by believers in Islam. See here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Mosque_Seizure

    Interestingly, the attack had to do with a group who believed they had found the Mahdi and wanted him to be revered as such by all muslims. I can easily imagine Iran attacking Mecca, due to Shia fervor regarding the Mahdi and their hatred of the Saudi royal family.

    The prostitute sits on the beast which came out of the waters. If the beast is Islam, then the harlot, for a time, is upheld by the ten nation confederation. If the ten nations are muslim, then there is no way they are going to allow the RCC to “ride” them.

    Like

  4. Anonymous
    08/03/2011 at 6:23 PM

    Another really interesting message from Jim Staley is on the red heifer sacrifice. The meaning behind the ritual and its fulfillment is Christ is deeply moving. Again, take or leave any of his references to law-keeping for believers today.

    Here is the podmatic page where you can download the audio: http://jim-staley.podomatic.com/

    At the end of the talk, he plays audio from rabbis with the Temple Institute who claim they have bred a kosher red heifer which is ready for sacrifice (if it hasn’t already quietly been done). More signs that we are right at the cusp of the final period?

    Like

  5. Willard
    08/03/2011 at 10:34 PM

    I have never considered Mecca as the prostitute but Mecca may have merit – so could the Kabba be the Image that will be worshipped

    Like

    • ICA
      08/03/2011 at 10:42 PM

      Walid Shoebat believes that the Kaaba may be the image, though I have a different view in that regard. See here.

      Like

  6. Willard
    08/03/2011 at 10:48 PM

    The attached link may support this – the silver cover for the Kabba Stone appears to look sexual, the people falling down are from many nations, multitudes, peoples and they do look like an ocean of water in a sense. It also may explain the wickedness of the Women in the measuring basket in Zec 5:5 that was taken to the country of Babylonia where a house would be built for it – the house and it contents are worshipped so maybe it could be considered the image

    http://www.google.ca/search?q=kabba+stone&hl=en&rlz=1R2ADSA_enCA387&biw=1024&bih=515&prmd=ivnsom&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=qwU6TszJCs6ftwf6-JmaAw&ved=0CDkQsAQ

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  7. ICA
    08/03/2011 at 11:10 PM

    Though I could be wrong, I think that the Kaaba is simply one of the many idols of Islamic worship referred to in the following verse:

    Revelation 9:20, “And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk …”

    There is no mention of the image of the Beast here in Revelation 9:20 in the context of worshiping devils and idols — which one would expect considering that those who do not worship the image of the Beast are said to be put to death (Revelation 13:15) — and I would contend it is because the image of the Beast is something separate all together. In fact, in this very verse, the image of the Beast is said to speak:

    Revelation 13:15, “And 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.”

    The Kaaba does not ‘speak’ nor does it ’cause’ anyone who does not worship it to be killed. But the Qur’an does. Significantly, the word “Qur’an” means “The Recitation” — literally, to speak. As Rev 13:15 says, the “image of the Beast” speaks and anyone who does not worship the image of the Beast should be killed (Rev 13:15). Likewise, according to the Qur’an anyone who dares to say anything negative about Islam/the Ummah/the Qur’an/the ‘prophet’ Mohammed should be killed according to what the Qur’an says (Surah 4:89-91; 5:33; 9:11), and “fatwas” (religious edicts) are often issued by Imams against someone for speaking out against Islam. See here for instance where an Australian Imam named Feiz Muhammad issued a death fatwa calling for the beheading of Dutch politician Geert Wilders. Even ‘moderate Muslims’ who speak out against radical Islam will risk death (see here and here for example).

    Surah 4:89 - Have no unbelieving friends. Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them.

    To the world of Islamic fundamentalism, the Qur’an will “come to life” as it were. In their minds the revival of such a Caliphate or arrival of the Mahdi will be like a ‘miraculous fulfillment’ of the ‘word of Allah’ and the image of this new Islamic Empire will be one of world conquest for the Ummah. Those who worship the Beast will be compelled to do what the Qur’an says against those who dare insult or mock Islam and Mohammed: put them to death. (see Revelation 13: A Commentary).

    Like

  8. Willard
    08/03/2011 at 11:17 PM

    Page 24 on the above link shows the Kabba roof top covered in scarlet cloth and on page 13 we have the Ayatollah Modarresi or the Imam of the kabba also dressed in scarlet ???

    Like

  9. 08/04/2011 at 1:36 AM

    ICA :
    I think Passion For Truth’s statement of beliefs says it well. See the last 7 bullet points:
    http://www.passion-for-truth.com/statement-of-beliefs.htm

    I read all their/his bullet points…why do I get the sense that they/he is not Trinitarian? There is such blunt statement about “Father, Son, Holy Spirit”, or that Yeshua is God. Yes, they say just about everything else about him, that he is “The Word, the Son of God, the Messiah, the Lamb…” There is very little about the Spirit as well. Sorry, but I’m getting an oogy feeling about them/him.

    I listened to another 1.5 hr sermon from JIm Staley today while at work on the Law vs. Love/Grace… I hear what he’s saying, but, hmmm…

    Like

  10. ICA
    08/04/2011 at 1:41 PM

    I don’t see anything on their website about the Trinity, so I can’t answer that. Although I am a staunch Trinitarian (see here), I wouldn’t throw out the ‘baby with the bathwater’ so to speak. If they teach Oneness theology, I reject that and personally would not attend their congregation because of the Oneness teaching. But that would not mean that all of their teachings should therefore be rejected. Some very good post-trib arguments come from Oneness believers, but I do not reject all of their teachings because of Oneness. Another example would be with Seventh Day Adventists. I reject the SDA’s elevation of Ellen White and some of their doctrines, but I do not reject them all. Even SDAs believe in the Trinity. But like I said above, we must discern to keep the meat, and spit out the bones.

    When we observe the fire of a candle we observe three distinct things: light, heat, and a flame. Yet, the light is fire. The heat is fire. The flame is fire. Although these three are fire, are there three fires, or only one? Likewise, God is revealed to us in Scripture as God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, but there are not three Gods. Only ONE God that is Triune. The Father is called God in Scripture (Phil 2:1), and so is the Son (John 1:1,14; Col 2:9), and so is the Spirit (Acts 5:3-4). Yet they are clearly seen as distinct (cf. John 14:23, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.”)

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  11. Anonymous
    08/04/2011 at 2:20 PM

    I agree, ICA. It didn’t even occur to me that they might not be trinitarian. But, I have gleaned a lot from his teachings, as you say, I’m not going to throw out the baby with the bath water.

    I emailed Jim Staley and asked if he had any articles or teachings on this topic. I’ll let you all know when he gets back to me.

    AHF

    Like

  12. Anonymous
    08/04/2011 at 3:28 PM

    Here is the response I received:

    “As of right now, Jim doesn’t have a teaching or article on the “Trinity”. He really wants to devote a lot of time, prayer, and study into this subject before he makes a public stance on it. :)

    Blessings and Shalom,
    Deanne Glenn
    Passion For Truth Ministries”

    AHF

    Like

  13. ICA
    08/04/2011 at 3:33 PM

    I hope he considers “The Jewish Trinity” by Yoel Natan as part of his study.

    Like

  14. 08/04/2011 at 3:39 PM

    OK, I hear what you two are saying. But….here’s my problem: “Christian” cults always get 2 things wrong: #1 The Trinity and #2 Saved by grace alone through faith alone. These two things are suspect in my mind when I dig into Staley’s teachings, which I have like none other in recent memory. And the reason for this is that there are some REALLY GOOD things he has to say. The last time I spent this much effort/time in listening, learning, evaluating, comparing somebody’s teaching with scripture was Mike Bickle back in 2009. Bickle, though I disagree with on a few points, still gets “four stars.”

    The more I listen to and read from Staley, the more uncomfortable I get (‘oogy’ was the technical term). Yes he gets a lot right, particularly regarding post trib, the end times, etc. Lots of insight. But he’s also strongly “kosher”, holds to “soul sleep”, sees himself as neither Catholic or Protestant, is anti-holidays because they are pagan (ala JWs), wants to reinterpret Galatians and Hebrews… I would be interested to hear what Joel Richardson thinks about him, since apparently they have had some contact.

    Like

  15. 08/04/2011 at 3:49 PM

    I just read AHF’s post above–that’s all I needed. THANK YOU AHF for writing them, and it was great of them to respond honestly. I am telling you guys, I truly believe, the HS, through the confirmation of the Word, has been giving me warnings about him, no matter how interesting and right on in certain areas he is. I am not judging his salvation, that is between him and God.

    But to me, the Word is clear: we are NO LONGER under the Law, period, ANY LAW–the 10 or the 613. The law was our tutor to lead us to Christ. We keep the law, perfectly, in Christ.

    The law is the standard. If we break it, like if we break the speed limit and a cop sees us, we will pay the penalty. But we are in the “car of Christ”–he always obeys the speed limit, and every other traffic rule, PERFECTLY. If we say we’re in Christ, and we constantly break the law, then we’re lying to ourselves, and we’re not in Christ (1 John, Kurt J. Version).

    Blessing on you guys!!

    Like

  16. ICA
    08/04/2011 at 3:54 PM

    At least we recognize the really good. Tastes like chicken. :) Until Staley does make an official stance in this regard, it might be best to withhold judgment until he does. I would ask Joel what his thoughts are on Staley’s teachings, but I don’t think they got into any other areas of theology other than eschatology.

    Like

  17. 08/04/2011 at 3:55 PM

    Here is a facebook note I wrote a while back: http://www.facebook.com/#!/note.php?note_id=158128835238

    I started to get worried about it while listening to Staley. But since it is almost exclusively scripture, I think I’m safe…I might revise it slightly at some point to avoid the appearance that I am telling people not to keep God’s law; wouldn’t want to be guilty of Mt 5:19.

    Like

  18. 08/04/2011 at 4:09 PM

    ICA, think about this: If he has to “devote a lot of time, prayer, and study into this subject before he makes a public stance on it”, once he does, how likely is it going to be the traditional, and by that I mean biblical, understanding of the trinity? ‘Not very’, IMO.

    Like

  19. ICA
    08/04/2011 at 5:02 PM

    Kurt J., “ICA, think about this: If he has to “devote a lot of time, prayer, and study into this subject before he makes a public stance on it”, once he does, how likely is it going to be the traditional, and by that I mean biblical, understanding of the trinity? ‘Not very’, IMO.”

    I’d be curious to know as well.

    Kurt J., “But to me, the Word is clear: we are NO LONGER under the Law, period, ANY LAW–the 10 or the 613. The law was our tutor to lead us to Christ. We keep the law, perfectly, in Christ.”

    Ok, but if we also include the Ten Commandments as being obsolete, why would God now write in our minds and heart His laws if they are now all obsolete?

    Hebrews 8:10, “For this [is] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.”

    Obviously, the old laws contained in ordinances with the rules and requirements of the law of Moses with the various civil, ceremonial, sacrificial, and dietary laws, which have all been fulfilled in Jesus, would not be written in our minds and hearts. Scripture is clear that these all ended at the cross. But those that God writes in our hearts and minds would not be there if He did not want us to follow them. They are commandments that we are to keep, as evidence by the many references below:

    John 14:15, “If you love Me, keep My commandments.”

    John 14:21, “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”

    1 John 5:2-3, “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.”

    1 John 2:3-5, “Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.”

    Rev 12:17, “And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”

    Rev 14:12, “Here is the patience of the saints; here [are] those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.”

    Rev 22:14, “Blessed [are] those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.”

    And what are the commandments that we must follow as believers?

    John 15:10,12, “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love… This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

    2 John 1:6, “This is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, that as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it. ”

    1 John 3:22-24, “And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight. And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment. Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.”

    The commandments are rooted in loving God, and in loving one another. This is why, in my reasoning, this is referring to the Ten Commandments of God because the first four commandments deal with our love for God, and the last six commandments deal with our love for one another. If we wanted to condense the Ten Commandments into simply loving God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our mind and also loving others as we love ourselves (Matt 22:36-38) then I guess it’s ok to view it that way. But at the end of the day, doesn’t that still involve following those Ten Commandments anyway? I say yes, it does. But we must understand something important — these commandments are not what saves us. It is not by works. It is by grace through faith in Christ alone that saves us. But although we are saved by faith alone, the faith that saves us is not alone.

    James 2:17, 26, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead… As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.”

    Like

  20. Anonymous
    08/04/2011 at 5:30 PM

    However, that still leaves us with the conundrum of the 4th commandment. Are we obligated to keep the Sabbath day literally?

    I feel somewhat responsible here as I was the one to introduce the Staley videos into the conversation. Dr. Walter Martin was one of my first mentors as a new believer, and I am usually a stickler for checking out “statements of faith” before I get into someone’s teachings. However, Kurt is right in that it is difficult to make heads or tails of what they believe about the deity of Christ, etc. from their statement of beliefs. I DO appreciate Staley’s teachings on the end times, but now I am wondering about the entire “Hebrew Roots” movement. I guess I just lumped them all in to the “Zola Levitt” category, but now I think there might need to be some deeper digging.

    So, I apologize if what I shared has in any way caused confusion.

    AHF

    Like

    • ICA
      08/04/2011 at 7:06 PM

      We don’t need to keep the Sabbath day literally if our Sabbath rest is now fulfilled in Christ. Otherwise Scripture would not have given us the freedom to choose for ourselves the day (Rom 14:5).

      Don’t feel bad about introducing Staley. It gives us something to chew on. As the body needs meat to grow, so does the spirit. These are the sort of topics that believers should embrace with opened arms because with them we debate, we discern, and we develop.

      Like

  21. 08/04/2011 at 6:38 PM

    The commandments are rooted in loving God, and in loving one another. This is why, in my reasoning, this is referring to the Ten Commandments of God because the first four commandments deal with our love for God, and the last six commandments deal with our love for one another. If we wanted to condense the Ten Commandments into simply loving God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our mind and also loving others as we love ourselves (Matt 22:36-38) then I guess it’s ok to view it that way. But at the end of the day, doesn’t that still involve following those Ten Commandments anyway? I say yes, it does. But we must understand something important — these commandments are not what saves us. It is not by works. It is by grace through faith in Christ alone that saves us. But although we are saved by faith alone, the faith that saves us is not alone.

    I’m absolutely not saying the commandments are obsolete…I’m saying that the mind set on keeping will result in death…we walk in the Spirit now, and as we do that, we keep all of God’s commands, even beyond the 10… Have you noticed the 10 are conspicuously missing some important ones? Gluttony, selfishness, nothing about giving/tithing…. there are a lot of other important commandments that are not found in the 10. I’m still at work, and no time to cut and paste scriptures…maybe later.

    AHF…don’t feel bad about introducing Staley–this has resulted in an awesome discussion, and is growing me, for one. Thanks for checking with their ministry about the trinity.

    Like

  22. Anonymous
    08/04/2011 at 7:53 PM

    That’s why I think that the Sermon on the Mount IS Jesus’ new commandments to us. He took the 10 commandments (and others) and baptised them all in the fountain of LOVE for God. If I love God with all of my heart, then of course I don’t want to worship idols, commit adultery, murder, steal, etc. A wonderful book to read on this subject is Bohhoeffer’s “Cost of Discipleship”.

    Some of the hebrew roots teaching gives me that “oogy” feeling as well, Kurt. It is implied that TRUE believers will NOT celebrate Christmas or Easter, will keep the feast days, will keep the Sabbath, etc. I have known the Lord for 31 years now and He has always been faithful to guide me in to all truth (John 16:13). If I hear or read a teaching that fills me with a sense of condemnation, I know it is NOT the leading of the Holy Spirit. His truth always comes with joy.

    Thanks for the grace, guys.

    AHF

    Like

  23. 08/04/2011 at 11:14 PM

    Even though commandments are talked about in the New Testament/Covenant, the overarching reality is that we’re not to have a “commandment” mentality, but a “love” mentality. Yes the word “love” is thrown around way too much, but here is the new command of Christ:

    A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. John 13:34

    Its not even “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart….” When we love each other, because we are now ‘the Father’s House’, we love Him.

    John 15:12 and 17 say essentially the same thing.

    The two core commands of the NT are:

    This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us. I JOhn 3:23

    These also show up in Col 1:3-4, Eph 1:15-16, Phil 1:4-5, Gal 5:6 and Heb 10:22,24.

    When we do these things, walking in the Spirit (Gal 3:3, Eph 5:25), we will fulfill the law and all the commandments of God.

    And of course we love because He FIRST loved us.

    There is a great, simple book by a Chico pastor, Gaylord Enns, called “Love Revolution”. I have been reading it on and off. The subtitle is “Rediscovering the Lost Command of Christ”. He postulates that this command was lost relatively early in the life of the Church, thus it didn’t show up in any of the creeds, really Christ’s most important command. What a shame.

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  24. ICA
    08/04/2011 at 11:17 PM

    I agree with that Kurt.

    Like

  25. Anonymous
    08/05/2011 at 1:36 AM

    You all probably keep up with Joel’s speaking engagements, but just in case you might have missed this, he spoke at a three or four day conference back in April at IHOP Atlanta. There are 6 or 7 sessions that are free to download either from their website or ITunes.

    Kurt – I was glad to hear you mention Mike Bickle. I’ve just started listening to some of his teachings and heard one of the best messages ever from him recently. And yes, I checked out their statement of faith! :)

    Like

  26. 08/05/2011 at 10:31 AM

    As soon as IHOP moves to a Jerusalem-centric, surrounding nations/Islam-beast end times model, which at this point they are not that specific about, talk about some spiritual warfare and attacks beginning. Joel Richardson and IHOP already have a relationship, and agree on most E.T. aspects. When they begin to run with that torch they won’t only be concerned about petty lawsuits from the ‘Int’l Hse of Pancakes’ over the use of the term ‘IHOP’. (Interesting side note that I would like to check out: IHOP [pancakes] is spreading rapidly in Islamic countries; I wonder if this lawsuit against IHOP [prayer] is related??)

    Re: Prayer Houses, I play bass and sing on two diff teams at our local one here in Chico. These are fantastic places of agreement/spiritual warfare for the body of Christ. They are usually independent, adhere to basic Christian doctrines (but are, w/o fail, pentecostal–OK by me!), and open to anybody from the body of Christ. They uphold a ‘bowl & incense’ approach to prayer and worship (google that term).

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  27. 08/05/2011 at 11:00 AM

    Here’s a link to the 24/7 prayer room at IHOP-KC: http://www.ihop.org/Publisher/Article.aspx?ID=1000058181

    Best way to learn about ‘harp & bowl’ is to watch for an hour or two.

    Like

  28. Anonymous
    08/06/2011 at 1:29 AM

    It sure seems like IHOP Atlanta is leaning in that direction. Haven’t listened to much of Bickle’s end-time teachings.

    Like

  29. Anonymous
    09/27/2011 at 1:13 PM

    Kurt that lawsuit got dismissed months ago. IHOP-KC has some of the best solid biblical eschatology I’ve heard. Recommend:

    http://mikebickle.org/resources/resource/1482?return_url=http%3A%2F%2Fmikebickle.org%2Fresources%2Fsearch%2F%3Fsearch_terms%3Dmark%2Bbeast%26x%3D0%26y%3D0

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  30. 12/19/2011 at 3:57 PM

    Very interesting… i grew up in a church where the anti-christ was the pope. Believe you me, there were a lot of evidence against “Vicarius Fili Dei” (which conveniently ends up computing as 666, see http://www.aloha.net/~mikesch/666.htm ).

    This view I suspect is not shared by the Catholic Church, and they have their own version of the beast and the mark.

    Now it might be Islam… oh wow. The number of different, seemingly, plausible interpretations based on the same texts will never cease to amaze me.

    That, said, the evidence from the politico-religious context of muslim countries seems to me very scant and mostly amounted to hearsay and anecdotes. I wish the author took a longer view on the history of the world and the power plays between religious groups and their directions in the long haul…

    Like

  31. ICA
    12/19/2011 at 4:22 PM

    Hi cafeproz, thank you for your comment. The view that held a papal antichrist was largely born out of the reformation, but as I wrote here the struggle that Christendom has had to endure in the face of Islamic jihad is much bloodier, farther reaching and broader in scope than the struggle between Catholics and Protestants has ever been in Europe during the Middle Ages. The fact of the matter is that no serious historian will deny that Islam’s most devout adherents are directly responsible for the greatest mass murder of both Christians and even non-Christians in the history of humanity.

    “Jihad destroyed a Christian Middle East and a Christian North Africa. Soon it was the fate of the Persian Zoroastrian and the Hindu to be the victims of jihad. The history of political Islam is the destruction of Christianity in the Middle East, Egypt, Turkey and North Africa. Half of Christianity was lost. Before Islam, North Africa was the southern part of Europe (part of the Roman Empire). Around 60 million Christians were slaughtered during the jihadic conquest…

    The Jews became permanent dhimmis throughout Islam. In Africa over 120 million Christians and animists have died over the last 1400 years of jihad.

    Approximately 270 million nonbelievers died over the last 1400 years for the glory of political Islam. These are the Tears of Jihad which are not taught in any school.” (FrontPage Magazine Feb. 2007).

    And these numbers continue to rise today, each and every day. I think that if we ask the right questions regarding a papal Beast vs an Islamic Beast we’ll begin to move away from the notion that Roman Catholicism meets the criteria required to be that of Daniel’s or even John’s eschatonic “Beast”. For instance, what happened to the Seven Churches of Asia mentioned in Paul’s letters? Have they all become Roman Catholic, or have they all been destroyed and/or converted into mosques through Islamic conquest? Are there any Roman Catholics who are born-again and saved by the blood of Christ, as they teach that Jesus is God in the flesh who died on the cross for the sins of the world? Are there any Muslims who are born again and saved by the blood of Christ, even though they deny that Jesus is God in the flesh who died on the cross for the sins of the world? If Roman Catholicism is the Beast, how is it that there can be Roman Catholics who are saved?

    If the Book of Revelation speaks about events that not only happen throughout history, but also in the eschaton of time leading up to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, can we reasonably conclude that Roman Catholicism is the Antichrist/Beast when Islam has campaigned against and desolated Christendom all throughout North Africa and the Middle East, and continues to do so to this very day in increasing measure? Why is Roman Catholicism and the Papacy not demanding the beheading and murder of non-Catholic Christians when radical Islamists all throughout the Islamic world call for the destruction of Christians and the Church each and every day? When we consider questions such as these, does it not stand to reason that Islam — which calls for the killing of all Christians regardless of whether one is Catholic or Protestant, and which also sanctions the beheading of these ‘infidels’ — is in fact the Beast that both Daniel and John prophesied about, and not Roman Catholicism wherein there are those who are born again by the Holy Spirit of God?

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  32. Gus
    12/31/2011 at 11:34 PM

    I am a Catholic; as such I appreciate your attempt to correct the view that the Catholic Church is the Whore of Babylon. I find your whole analysis about the Antichrist and his probable connection to the false religion that is Islam to be well reasoned. The more that I’ve learned about Islam the more that I have come to suspect that it is nothing short of the work of Satan in as much as Islam claims to be the definitive divine revelation and as such explicitly denies that Jesus Christ is Lord and God. Satan appearing as an angel and giving Mohammed a false revelation would have been a stroke of evil genius; and he does it in the most subtle way by on the one hand appearing to honor Jesus and Mary but on the other denying the central claim of Christianity: Jesus Christ is Lord. In the book “The Islamic Antichrist” Joel Richardson argues that in fact the Antichrist is the Islamic Mahdi or Messiah. In the book “Trial, Tribulation, and Triumph: Before, During and After Antichrist” Desmond A. Birch presents a Catholic perspective on the End of Days based on Magisterial interpretation of the apocalyptic literature in the Sacred Scriptures as well as on mystical experiences of numerous Saints. Interestingly, Birch posits that the minor chastisement (which will precede the Great Chastisement associated with the Antichrist) that Catholics and other Christians will suffer will be due to an alliance between Marxists and Muslims. I’m interested to get your take on these two books if you ever get the chance to read them and care to comment on them. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

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  33. ICA
    01/01/2012 at 3:44 PM

    Hi Gus, thank you for your comment. I’m familiar with Joel Richardson’s works and have read/watched his materials, and am in agreement with him (Joel has also now just recently released a new DVD teaching series called, “The Return is Near“). I haven’t read Desmond A. Birch’s book, but it does sound interesting. Other material I would recommend would be from Walid Shoebat (I’ve included links and comments to his End Times Today teaching series here), as well as Jack Smith’s book, “Islam – The Cloak of Antichrist“. We don’t have to agree with each and every single point of all of these teachers, but I agree with this: Islam’s role in the End of Days leading up to the Second Advent is critical, and there is a very good reason why every nation mentioned by name in the Bible that Christ will fight against when He returns is today an Islamic nation.

    Like

  34. Willard
    02/03/2012 at 10:21 PM
  35. 02/14/2012 at 9:45 PM

    I’ve read your article and I find your logic faulty. If you say that it is a spiritual mark because it is given by a metaphorical beast, than by that same logic the bowls and plagues are metaphorical too, given by a metaphoric God, are they not? Or if we take your logic to the absurd, there entire book of Revelation is spiritual and we have a very Platonic evaluation of scripture. In fact, if you take this logic to its extreme, the entire bible is spiritualized. This is the same logic used by those that would accommodate theistic evolution.

    Buying and selling. This is the key. You mention the physical and the spiritual plane, but what about the monetary plane? What is it that would force an entire world economy to be subject to the beast? Or in other words, how do you prevent people from monetary exchange, if you don’t control the currency? This control would have to be so invasive that even groups of individuals that wished to segregate and trade among themselves, would stand out like sore thumbs, and be prevented from doing so.

    What is control? Well, God is sovereign and omnipresent. Satan is not. How would Satan attempt to gain omnipresent control in the physical realm?

    God knows the hearts, minds, and whereabouts of every living creature. Satan is going to attempt to emulate that omnipresence. Yet, since he does not have the spiritual capacity to do so, he will attempt to do so in the physical and monetary plane.

    Our monetary system, as we know it, is coming to an end. Trust in paper / credit money is about to vanish. What do you suppose would be able to re-instill trust in fiat currency and at the same time provide control to the beast? It would need to be something so technologically advanced that it would provide the beast with the ability to know the location of every living creature(GPS), know every heart and mind, although a shallow alternative to God’s Knowing (genetic identification and digital domain transaction).

    In short, a spiritual mark is no mark at all. For if it were, than there would be no need to even mention it, let alone calculate it.

    Like

  36. ICA
    02/14/2012 at 11:14 PM

    Hi Nickelsaver, thank you for your comments.

    Nickelsaver, “If you say that it is a spiritual mark because it is given by a metaphorical beast, than by that same logic the bowls and plagues are metaphorical too”

    That is a possibility.

    Nickelsaver, “given by a metaphoric God.”

    That conclusion would be nonsensical. We have common sense, and we need to make use of it.

    The key to helping us decipher difficult passages of Scripture is to allow Scripture to interpret itself hermeneutically, especially in a book such as Revelation that is replete with symbolism. How do other, more clear, passages of Scripture use the terms? Also consider the style of writing being used, who wrote it, who it was written to, and why it was written. We must learn to understand what is intended to be read and understood metaphorically, or as a figure of speech, or in a wooden-literal sense.

    Nickelsaver, “Buying and selling. This is the key. You mention the physical and the spiritual plane, but what about the monetary plane?”

    It’s very simple. Take a look at what is happening now in places like Egypt after the “Arab Spring” where “calls are often made in the media not to buy from Christian merchants or to sell anything to Christians. Businessmen are therefore faced with a struggle for economic survival. Christians are indirectly excluded from employment” (read here), or in Iraq where Christian businesses are destroyed by Islamists and Christians are told that they will be killed if they try to reopen their stores (read here). This sort of discrimination and intimidation against Christians is becoming prevalent throughout the Muslim world.

    Nickelsaver, “What is it that would force an entire world economy to be subject to the beast?”

    Where do you find this idea in the Bible? It is not found in Scripture. This is a perfect example of why hermeneutics is vital when reading Scripture, particularly when dealing with kings and kingdoms, especially the Beast of Daniel/Revelation and his kingdom. I’d recommend reading the following article: “Antichrist: Leader of a One-World Government?

    Nickelsaver, “In short, a spiritual mark is no mark at all. For if it were, than there would be no need to even mention it”

    God’s mark is spiritual (cf. 2 Tim 2:19; Rev 9:4). Why mention it?

    Nickelsaver, “let alone calculate it.”

    As I mentioned in “Revelation 13: A Commentary“:

    The word for “number” in Rev 13:18 is “arithmos” and it does not simply mean number. It also means multitude. This is significant because it therefore means that the Greek text can also be translated as “the multitude of the beast: for it is the multitude of a man.” But what man would that be? There is nothing in the text telling us that the man referred to here must be the end-of-days Antichrist. In fact, consider the following — in order to convert to Islam one must recite the Islamic creed, called the Shahada, by declaring, “There is no god but Allah, and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah.” Because of this very fact it therefore stands to reason that the multitude of a man refers not to an eschatonic Antichrist, but rather to Mohammed, the founder and prophet of Islam. If you cannot acknowledge Mohammed, you cannot become a Muslim. Thus, the multitude of the Beast, which is the multitude of a man, are they who receive the mark of the Beast upon their ‘foreheads’ and are therefore destined for destruction. This is the direct antithesis or contradistinction to the great multitude, which is the multitude of the Lamb (Rev 7:17, 14:4) that receives the seal of God upon their foreheads (Rev 7:3, 14:1) and are therefore destined for redemption (cf Eph 4:30). One multitude is lost and separated from Christ forever (Rev 14:11), the other is saved and received unto Christ (Rev 7:15-17, 19:6-9, 22:2-5).

    Yes my friend, there is indeed a need to “calculate” (psēphizō – reckon) the multitude of the Beast. Don’t just scratch the surface. Dig a little deeper.

    Like

    • 02/16/2012 at 2:30 AM

      Sorry, I subscribe to the theory that the EU is the vehicle (a revived Roman Empire). That the Euro’s design is perfectly in place to sub-plant the Dollar as the worlds reserve currency. And yes, that the beast will have more than regional power, it will be global.

      But before I get any deeper into this. I am going to read what you offer so I can give a more Berean reply.

      Like

  37. 02/15/2012 at 1:31 AM

    ICA :

    The word for “number” in Rev 13:18 is “arithmos” and it does not simply mean number. It also means multitude. This is significant because it therefore means that the Greek text can also be translated as “the multitude of the beast: for it is the multitude of a man.” But what man would that be? There is nothing in the text telling us that the man referred to here must be the end-of-days Antichrist. In fact, consider the following — in order to convert to Islam one must recite the Islamic creed, called the Shahada, by declaring, “There is no god but Allah, and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah.” Because of this very fact it therefore stands to reason that the multitude of a man refers not to an eschatonic Antichrist, but rather to Mohammed, the founder and prophet of Islam. If you cannot acknowledge Mohammed, you cannot become a Muslim. Thus, the multitude of the Beast, which is the multitude of a man, are they who receive the mark of the Beast upon their ‘foreheads’ and are therefore destined for destruction. This is the direct antithesis or contradistinction to the great multitude, which is the multitude of the Lamb (Rev 7:17, 14:4) that receives the seal of God upon their foreheads (Rev 7:3, 14:1) and are therefore destined for redemption (cf Eph 4:30). One multitude is lost and separated from Christ forever (Rev 14:11), the other is saved and received unto Christ (Rev 7:15-17, 19:6-9, 22:2-5).

    ICA, that is very good–you must have edited that article since I read it last; at least I don’t remember this insight. I think you’ve really struck the truth with that one.

    Like

  38. ICA
    02/15/2012 at 12:06 PM

    I’ve made a couple of revisions on this article and the Revelation 13 commentary since the original post to flesh out or incorporate another thought, or to update broken links and add a couple of new ones in light of some “Arab Spring” developments.

    It’s become apparent to me that although the enemy will try to destroy what God has created, he cannot. All he can do is create his own corrupted version of the elect to wage war against the elect, in an effort to stand in place of the elect.

    * God has the Ekklesia. The enemy has the Ummah.
    * God’s Ekklesia is “as a bride adorned for her husband” and filled with “the glory of God”. The enemy’s Ummah is a harlot “decked with gold and precious stones and pearls” filled with abominations.
    * God has given the Ekklesia His Word, the Bible. The enemy has given the Ummah its corruption, the Qur’an.
    * God’s Ekklesia is the multitude of the Lamb, whom they follow. The enemy’s Ummah is the multitude of a man, whom they follow.
    * God’s Ekklesia comes out of Great Tribulation. The enemy’s Ummah is responsible for it.
    * God’s Ekklesia receives the seal of God upon their foreheads and are redeemed. The enemy’s Ummah receives the Mark of the Beast upon their foreheads and are destroyed.

    Isaiah 14:12-15, “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! [How] you are cut down to the ground, You who weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation On the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’ Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, To the lowest depths of the Pit.”

    The word for “ascend” in Isaiah 14 is “alah” (H5927), pronounced exactly as the “curse” of “alah” in Zechariah 5:3 (H423). Lucifer fell from heaven and said in his heart that he would ascend back into heaven and be exalted greater than God. Is it any wonder, therefore, that the battle cry of Islamists (called the Takbir) is “Allahu akbar” — which does not mean “God is great” as is often translated in the media — but translates literally as “Allah is greater” …

    Like

  39. 02/15/2012 at 3:23 PM

    Yep. “I will sit on the mount of the congregation”, how telling. Reminds me of arithmos, ‘multitude’, and I think of the poor, deceived masses circling the Kaaba in Mecca.

    Your points are being confirmed and strengthened daily. Other contrasts could be added to those above:

    * Satan is prowling lion, seeking whom he may devour; Yahweh is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah
    * Yahweh is the sun of righteousness; Satan and Islam are symbolized by the moon, coming out in darkness and consisting only of reflected light…

    and I’m sure we could think of many others.

    Off topic, I saw this:

    Israeli library uploads Newton’s theological texts

    He’s considered to be one of the greatest scientists of all time. But Sir Isaac Newton was also an influential theologian who applied a scientific approach to the study of scripture, Hebrew and Jewish mysticism.

    Now Israel’s national library, an unlikely owner of a vast trove of Newton’s writings, has digitized his theological collection — some 7,500 pages in Newton’s own handwriting — and put it online. Among the yellowed texts are Newton’s famous prediction of the apocalypse in 2060.

    Newton revolutionized physics, mathematics and astronomy in the 17th and 18th century, laying the foundations for most of classical mechanics — with the principal of universal gravitation and the three laws of motion bearing his name.

    However, the curator of Israel’s national library’s humanities collection said Newton was also a devout Christian who dealt far more in theology than he did in physics and believed that scripture provided a “code” to the natural world.

    “Today, we tend to make a distinction between science and faith, but to Newton it was all part of the same world,” said Milka Levy-Rubin. “He believed that careful study of holy texts was a type of science, that if analyzed correctly could predict what was to come.”

    So he learned how to read Hebrew, scrolled through the Bible and delved into the study of Jewish philosophy, the mysticism of Kabbalah and the Talmud — a compendium of Jewish oral law and stories about 1,500 years old…

    http://news.yahoo.com/israeli-library-uploads-newtons-theological-texts-181458861.html

    I know there are some peculiarities about Newton’s theology, but he was quite an interesting guy and I think it would be fascinating to read his writings.

    Like

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  1. 01/20/2012 at 4:25 PM

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