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. 02/23/2012 at 10:59 PM

    tried to post a comment but it doesn’t want to take…being moderated? could not post the URL even in plain text

    Perhaps a sign that God does not want it on here.

    I can accept that

    Like

  2. ICA
    02/23/2012 at 11:07 PM

    Not moderated, unless it contains more than 2 URLs. Try refreshing page, or possibly clear cookies? My guess is the URL string may contain a mix of letters that the filter thinks is a blocked word.

    Like

  3. ICA
    02/23/2012 at 11:44 PM

    http://gretawire.foxnewsinsider.com/video/the-rev-franklin-graham-on-the-record-3/

    Rev. Franklin Graham sits down and talks with Greta Van Susteren about the Christian persecution now taking place throughout the Muslim world.

    Like

  4. 02/23/2012 at 11:44 PM

    neutral reply to Sandra,

    One can interpret scripture without changing scripture. Prophesy, unlike essential doctrine, is open to a very wide range of speculation. Only God knows the day or the hour. Only God knows the whole story from beginning to end. What is required for salvation He has made so clear that a child can understand. What He has to say to those that will endure “the time of Jacobs trouble” will be made know in His timing.

    Faith in the cross is essential. Faith in any particular eschatology is foolish.

    I still see the EU model as most probable. But there are a lot of interesting things brought out here.

    Still watching.

    ICA – I wound up posting that item on my “shift” blog.

    http://thecomingparadigmshift.blogspot.com/2011/12/mideast.html

    Peace

    Like

  5. 02/25/2012 at 1:39 AM

    Hey ICA,

    I just read your revised “Mark of the Beast” article – thanks for the citation! You’ve definitely connected a lot of threads together. Its a little long!! But other than that, ‘right on the mark’, so to speak.

    I’m in Redding, CA tonight, up here watching my son compete in sections, trying to qualify for the CA State Wrestling Championship (HS) next weekend. He won his first two, and has two more tomorrow, assuming he makes it into the Finals.

    I just got back from a very encouraging service at Bethel Church here, since we’re spending the night. They were packed out on a Friday night (I’d say about 2000 people). Very encouraging worship and message. First time I’ve ever been. Its really special to get together with other believers who are really passionate for God.

    Anyway, bless you all,
    Kurt

    Like

  6. ICA
    02/25/2012 at 8:28 PM

    Kurt J., “I just read your revised “Mark of the Beast” article – thanks for the citation!”

    My pleasure. It was a well-written and pointed question, and I wanted to leave it as is.

    Kurt J., “You’ve definitely connected a lot of threads together. Its a little long!!”

    It’s a bit long, yes. I almost thought about making Zechariah 5 its own article, but since it was so integral to this subject decided to incorporate it. I did another slight revision today that I think gives it a slightly better flow.

    Kurt J., “First time I’ve ever been. Its really special to get together with other believers who are really passionate for God.”

    We’re all one big family with a kinship that many non-believers could never fully appreciate! :)

    Like

  7. Ed
    02/26/2012 at 2:30 PM

    Just read the article latest update. Outstanding, very compelling proof that the mark has everything to do with Islam.

    Like

  8. 02/26/2012 at 8:20 PM
  9. 02/27/2012 at 12:02 PM

    YES! I think you’ve done it.

    Like

  10. 03/03/2012 at 3:00 AM

    Gold and silver replacing paper money honoring sharia law (video).

    Like

  11. 03/03/2012 at 1:28 PM

    The gold souks with billions of dollars in gold in the middle east and Asia may well prove this point – 24k gold has been currecy there forever

    Like

  12. 03/04/2012 at 8:14 PM

    Willard, et al,

    Yes. Gold has been a currency in various ways going back thousands of years. But this will change very soon, Gold will soon go into hiding.

    This is the monetary aspect that I spoke about, which I believe is compelling evidence for the EU/RRC model.

    You see the price of gold is not determined by a physical market, and is no longer directly pegged to the dollar. It is determined by a commodity exchange (paper gold). In other words, we do not know what the price of gold is as a monetary metal, because it is traded on the comex like a stock. And it is traded in volumes substantially greater than what could ever be physically delivered. To put it another way, there are many more claims on gold than there is physical gold in existence.

    Now, in the current financial system, the dollar is the world reserve currency. The dollar is the vehicle for foreign exchange and the purchase of OIL. The dollar severed its direct tie with gold in 1971. So officially, gold is a commodity. But the commodity market is based on the dollar, so in a sense, the dollar is still linked to gold, only the price is way undervalued.

    So we have two things going on. Gold (an asset) with many more claims on it than can be redeemed; and dollars (a debt instrument) with trillions of debt accumulation that can never be paid.

    Now imagine what happens when this system finally collapses. I can guarantee that it will. The USG alone is in hock to the tune of 15 trillion, and cant even keep up with the interest being accrued. But that is just a fraction of the total dollar debt. The rest of the world is not going to let that continue into infinity.

    Now we have the Euro. It is a unique currency. It has two characteristics that distinguish itself from all others. 1) It has severed its tie to a nation state. 2) The ECB (European Central Bank) which manages the currency, offsets its foreign exchange debt with Gold. In other words, they hold Gold as an asset on their balance sheet in proportion to claims on their currency. The dollar could never do this, because all of its gold is only a small fraction of all of its debt.

    I’m trying to make this as short as possible.

    When the dollar based system collapses. Gold (which is the one non-consumed asset that everything else is measured against) will be the one item which retains its value. And because gold has been undervalued in the current system. Its value in the next system will be many times what it is in this dollar system.

    Gold will go into hiding. It is way too valuable to be used as a currency. The Euro will become the world reserve currency. It will not be pegged to gold as the dollar was in the past. It will simply be backed by gold as an asset held by the ECB. And all other countries will have to reset their currencies based on how much gold they have.

    We will see that the gold dinar in the video will cease to exist, and that those Muslims, will by necessity, be required to embrace a fiat currency again.

    Now the question is what will that fiat currency be?

    If the A/C is out of a revived Ottoman Empire, that means that the Islamic states will need to form a coalition (Sunni and Shia). And they will need to issue a common currency, which at the very least, is solely used as a medium of exchange in the Mideast. This would support the local A/C dominance portrayed on this blog.

    If the A/C is out of the revived Roman Empire, the vehicle (Euro) is already in place. And because it WILL BE the world reserve currency, can support the global A/C dominace portrayed in the RRC model.

    Understanding currency, gold, and the path that we are on is key. Which model do you think fits the currency monetary situation better?

    It is the RRC model.

    Like

  13. ICA
    03/04/2012 at 8:33 PM

    Hi Nickelsaver, what Scriptures do you rely on to support your position of some kind of “world reserve currency”? I can’t find any passages that say anything about it. That idea seems that be based upon assumption and speculation, and little to do with Scripture. What happened to “Sola Scriptura”?

    Like

    • 03/05/2012 at 1:21 AM

      ICA,

      We have a world reserve currency. It is called the US Dollar. Regardless of what you believe the bible says or doesn’t say about the A/C use of a single global currency, that is not the same thing as a world reserve currency. We have had a world reserve currency for over 100 years. I think you meant to say that you find no place in the bible that refers to a “single” global currency. And you are correct.

      But, are you implying that “Sola Scripture” means that we should only look at the bible and not at what we observe in the world? I take “Sola Scriptura” as referring to the basis for belief, not the sum total of belief. There is a distinction. That is, whatever the bible talks about, is absolutely correct. But this does not imply that the bible talks about everything.

      Furthermore, you are being disingenuous in saying that you find no place that “implies” a single world currency. “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. Rev 13:16-17.

      What you should have said is that you disagree that this implies a global reserve currency, which is the difference in our interpretation of that scripture.

      But I am not even implying that there even needs to be a single global currency. In actuality, all that is required is a single medium of exchange. Money actually consists of three different parts. 1) medium of exchange, 2) unit of account, and 3) store of value.

      In this model, countries would still have there own currency, but the “mark” is the medium of exchange.

      Now even if you are talking about your local ROE model. The issue of currency in terms of buying and selling is still an issue that you need to deal with in the Rev 13 text. I find that it seemed very important for the Holy Spirit to include it in the text. To write it off as simply a matter of Islam local governments preventing non-muslims from transacting is absurd. The non-muslims could trade with each other. Look at the text. ..causes ALL…to receive & …NO ONE may buy or sell.

      What is preventing anyone from buying and selling right now? Nothing. What will change that?

      I’ve spelled it out for you.

      Antichrist Money Function

      Like

  14. 03/04/2012 at 10:03 PM

    This is the problem that I see with gold – it is the paper gold – when it all collapses it will collapse the entire worlds finacial system – I see no other way out of our finacial situation other than implosion – Europe – Asia – Africa – the US – are all in for the fall

    Nicklesaver – So we have two things going on. Gold (an asset) with many more claims on it than can be redeemed; and dollars (a debt instrument) with trillions of debt accumulation that can never be paid.

    I am a strong believer that the AC is middle eastern based – there are many reasons for this – Micha speaks about The Assyrian, Daniel speaks about the Little Horn coming out of the four Greek horns, prophecy is Israel and Jerusalem centric, also I do not agree with the many that give Rome the credit it gets for 70 AD. I know I am going against the grain of many but Dan 9:26 does not speak about Rome when it says THE PEOPLE of the prince who will come. THE PEOPLE are not Romans but rather are people with the DNA of the four horns of Alexander – Greeks. The prince of these people is the A/C who also is the Assyrian

    We are seeing it all come together (the ten toes – ten horns – ten crowns) I BELIEVE in the Arab spring nations which will unite and become the Islamic Caliphate of the Sunnis and the Shias the two iron legs united as the ten toes of clay and iron – but that is just what I see

    Nicklesaver – If the A/C is out of a revived Ottoman Empire, that means that the Islamic states will need to form a coalition (Sunni and Shia). And they will need to issue a common currency, which at the very least, is solely used as a medium of exchange in the Mideast. This would support the local A/C dominance portrayed on this blog.

    Like

  15. 03/04/2012 at 10:16 PM

    Nickelsaver –

    The way the world is following and turning and condoning Islam with churches even turning that direction even Rick Warren and many other churches. Even the RCC with John Paul II kissing the Koran. There may be an chance that this is where the False Prophet will come from – but again it is a wait and see.

    Like

    • 03/05/2012 at 1:35 AM

      Willard,

      So you agree that ecumenism is on the rise, unlike ICA.

      I believe Islam is the tool which the A/C will use to strike down all fundamentalism, christian, Jewish, and Islamic.

      Outside of Islam, do you believe the world embraces radical Islam. And by radical i mean fundamental. The cu-ran and the bible are both viewed as archaic. The A/C will condemn intolerance, through intolerance. In other words, religions of exclusion will be excluded, in favor of the ultimate all inclusive religion. And that religion will then become exclusive.

      Like

  16. Sharon
    03/05/2012 at 3:45 AM

    You spoke about the possibility of the number being that of “In the name of Allah”. Well in my bible Rev 13:18 says that it is a number of a man…..not a god.

    Like

    • ICA
      03/05/2012 at 1:40 PM

      Sharon, “You spoke about the possibility of the number being that of “In the name of Allah”. Well in my bible Rev 13:18 says that it is a number of a man…..not a god.”

      Hi Sharon, thank you for your comment. Please read the article in full. This is already addressed specifically in the second and third last paragraphs of the article.

      Like

  17. 03/05/2012 at 8:54 AM

    ICA,

    How do you reconcile these two scriptures?

    “Surely the Lord God does nothing, Unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” Amos 3:7 and “…no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.”

    Like

  18. Willard
    03/05/2012 at 12:25 PM

    nickelsaver – I am not sure that I fully grasp what you mean by ecumenism – I agree with most of what ICA posts as he makes a lot of sense especially about Islam etc. – but some topics I still am of my own mind – but I think that we all have to agree that more and more we are seeing Islam take over churches that have closed their doors especially in England and Europe and even on the streets and businesses there are more and more both women and men in Islamic scarfs – beards.

    We also are seeing Chris-lam taking root in some churches – it is like people have become blind to the real truth. It is just like Dan 8:25 says He will cause deceit to prosper?? Daniel is speaking about the four horns and The LATTER PART of THEIR REIGN. I think this is telling us the lands (of the four horns) that we should be looking that will produce the A/C kingdom. I am speaking for myself on this because this is what I see or understand that we are being told.

    Da 8:25 He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes…………..

    It simply amazes me how after the Islamic wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and 9/11 Islam is becoming the religion of choice for many. Even in the highest levels of US Government and office.

    Last summer they barged a mosque up the McKenzie River all the way up into Inuvik NWT right on the Arctic Ocean in the land of the Eskimo – really makes one wonder Why!

    Like

  19. ICA
    03/05/2012 at 1:32 PM

    Nickelsaver, “you are being disingenuous in saying that you find no place that ‘implies’ a single world currency. ‘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. Rev 13:16-17.'”

    Hi brother, imho claiming that Revelation 13:16-17 refers to a single world currency is like reading 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 and claiming that it refers to a pre-trib rapture. Yes, the text speaks about our gathering to Christ, but it says nothing about it being pre-trib. Likewise, Revelation 13:16-17 speaks about buying and selling, but it says nothing about a single world currency, or currency in general. Sound exegesis and sound hermeneutics both demand that we take meaning out of the text and allow Scripture to interpret Scripture. The idea of “currency” and it’s “medium of exchange” does not do this, but instead is eisegetical in adding meaning that isn’t there and cannot be substantiated elsewhere in the full counsel of God’s Word.

    Nickelsaver, “are you implying that ‘Sola Scripture’ means that we should only look at the bible and not at what we observe in the world?”

    The suggestion of a single world currency goes beyond the explicit teaching and, I would argue, the intent of the text. Sure, economies may collapse and there may be attempts to restructure or even amalgamate economies and trade, but I would contend that these difficulties are more in line with the “birth pains” leading up to the Second Coming of Christ.

    Nickelsaver, “But I am not even implying that there even needs to be a single global currency. In actuality, all that is required is a single medium of exchange. Money actually consists of three different parts. 1) medium of exchange, 2) unit of account, and 3) store of value.

    In this model, countries would still have there own currency, but the “mark” is the medium of exchange.”

    Those who dwell in the lands controlled by the kingdom of Antichrist and are permitted to buy or sell must have the mark, *or* the name of the beast, *or* the number of his name. If the “mark” is the medium of exchange, then what is the “name of the beast”? What is “the number of his name”? Since they can also buy and sell just by having the “name of the beast” or just by having “the number of his name”, what would then be the “medium of exchange”?

    Nickelsaver, “What is preventing anyone from buying and selling right now?”

    That’s very simple brother. What is preventing many from buying and selling right now is their refusal to “worship the beast”. They have not submitted in mind (forehead) or in deed (hand). They do not carry the “name of the beast”. They are not counted among his number. In this article, a Christian Bishop in Egypt reveals that Christians are facing incredible hardships “because 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, for example by job advertisements specifying ‘a female employee with headscarf’. Attempts are being made ‘to drive the Christians out’.” This is especially true now since the Arab Spring. In this article, Islamists in Iraq destroy Christian businesses and leave notes stating that if any Christian tries to reopen their store, they would be killed. The only way that they can buy or sell is if they convert to Islam. Islamic extremism is today spreading in the Muslim world, and it is not going to get better.

    Nickelsaver, “How do you reconcile these two scriptures? ‘Surely the Lord God does nothing, Unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets’ Amos 3:7 and ‘…no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.'”

    The prophets didn’t just “make up” prophecies. The prophecies were given to them by God through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and these prophecies have a purpose and intended meaning that we need to study, but “precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little” (Isaiah 28:9). Using just one tiny passage of Scripture to be the sole foundation of an idea that is not explicitly taught by the text is virtually no foundation at all.

    Like

    • 03/05/2012 at 9:16 PM

      The suggestion of a single world currency goes beyond the explicit teaching and, I would argue, the intent of the text. Sure, economies may collapse and there may be attempts to restructure or even amalgamate economies and trade, but I would contend that these difficulties are more in line with the “birth pains” leading up to the Second Coming of Christ.

      I have never heard of “Birth pains” or “pangs” explained in any other context except earthquakes and volcanoes. How do you justify interpreting a man-made financial system with what is an obvious description of a creation related phenomenon?

      Like

  20. 03/05/2012 at 6:47 PM

    ICA,

    You know as well as i do that 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 is not the only proof text used to for pre-trib rapture. That is a strawman, because Revelation 13:16-17 is the only verse we have regarding the mark, and its monetary control.

    Here is a good article on pre-trib rapture, many verses cited.

    Click to access Ice-RaptureMyths.pdf

    Like

  21. ICA
    03/05/2012 at 6:55 PM

    Nickelsaver, “Here is a good article on pre-trib rapture, many verses cited.”

    No verses were cited. It was an attempt by Thomas Ice to defend the indefensible. In fact, Mr. Ice calls the “pre-trib” rapture his “blessed hope” in his conclusion, which causes me to wonder if he has even taken the time to consider what the Apostle Paul was referring to in the epistle of Titus:

    Titus 1:2, 2:13, 3:7, “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began … Looking for that blessed hope [eternal life], AND the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ… That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

    Paul uses the word “hope” three times in his epistle — at the beginning when speaking about eternal life and then later while referring to that blessed hope, and then once more again near the end. Each time he is referring to the blessed hope of eternal life. Nowhere does Paul ever say that the “blessed hope” is our gathering to Christ. We are looking for the blessed hope of eternal life, and (in addition to) the glorious appearing of Christ. The Greek includes the word “kai”, which the NIV does not incorporate in the English translation, unfortunately.

    The glorious appearing is the “epiphaneia” (G2015). There is something that is very important about the “epiphaneia” of Christ that very few pre-trib teachers will discuss:

    2 Thess 2:8, “And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness [epiphaneia G2015] of his coming”

    The “epiphaneia” is post-trib. If we are to believe that the “blessed hope” of eternal life is actualized at the “epiphaneia” of Christ, then we must therefore also believe that the blessed hope is His post-trib appearance and gathering of the elect. This means that the rapture is post-trib, not pre-trib. But Thomas Ice would rather we just ignore that significant detail.

    Like

    • 04/30/2012 at 5:03 AM

      ICA, good point about the blessed hope. It is totally about eternal life. Eternal life stems from salvation. Would you know it, on friday I saw the mega church guys again and got razzed for not being pre-trib. I don’t think I’ll talk to anyone about it anymore. Not because of ‘division’ but because it is like screaming into the wilderness and nobody hearing a thing. You obviously must take a blood pressure medication due to all the lengthy explanations being ignored. God bless you man, JJ JHS

      Like

      • ICA
        04/30/2012 at 12:52 PM

        Hi JJJHS, some probably gloss over the explanations, but I’m sure that there are many who do not. Someone changing their position on any given subject usually does so after an extended process. It’s not something that one argument alone will always do overnight. Sound explanations, highlighting current events in the real world, asking the right questions and throwing in a healthy serving of reason are the right ingredients that will combine to produce a solid product. Sometimes it’ll just need the time to simmer.

        Like

  22. 03/05/2012 at 8:19 PM

    ICA,

    Let’s just look at 2 Thess 2:8 in context with all of 2 Thess 2:1-12 and support text.

    This is a full breakdown by David Hocking

    “WHEN THE ANTICHRIST IS REVEALED”
    2 Thessalonians 2:1-1

    Introduction: 1 John 2:18 – “ye have heard that antichrist shall come” – Revelation 11:7
    calls him “the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit” and often with the simple
    words “the beast” – whose final destiny according to Rev. 19:20 is “the lake of fire
    burning with brimstone.”

    Daniel 7:8 refers to him as a “little horn” with “eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth
    speaking great things.”

    Daniel 8:23 calls him “a king of fierce countenance.” Daniel 9:26 refers to him as “the
    prince that shall come.”

    Daniel 11:36ff refers to him as “the king” that “shall do according to his will, and he
    shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous
    things against the God of gods… ”

    Zechariah 11:15 calls him a “foolish shepherd” and “the idol shepherd that leaveth the
    flock” in v. 17.

    The word “anti” in English means “against” but in Greek it means “in the stead of” – the
    Antichrist is a counterfeit Christ – meaning will accept him as the Messiah and be greatly
    deceived!

    Notice the following facts about the coming of this world deceiver:
    1A. THE DAY OF THE LORD IS THE TIME OF HIS REVELATION – 1-2

    1B. The RAPTURE is the basis for this word of exhortation from Paul – 1
    “by the coming (Greek: parousia) of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our
    gathering together unto Him.”

    2B. The immediate REASON was the reaction of these believers to reports that the
    day of the Lord was already here – 2
    “that ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by
    word, nor by letter as from us”

    <2A. THE DEPARTURE OF CHURCH-AGE BELIEVERS WILL COME FIRST – 3
    “a falling away first” – Greek: apostasia – used twice in its noun form (cf. Acts
    21:21), and 15 times in its verb form, aphistemi. It is translated “depart” in 11
    places.

    Once in Luke 8:13 it is translated “fall away”; it is found in Acts 5:37 where it is
    translated drew away,” and in 5:38 as “Refrain from these men.”

    It is used in 1 Timothy 4:1 as a religious apostasy or departure from the faith.

    The very qualifying words “from the faith” are needed to describe what kind of
    “departure” it is – nothing like this is in our text. The definite article is used with
    the word which implies a specific departure, just mentioned in 2 Thess. 2:1, and in
    1 Thess. 4:13-18.

    The Antichrist will not be known until after the “departure” or the Rapture of the
    Church.

    3A. THE DESCRIPTION OF THE ANTICHRIST THAT REVEALS HIS REAL
    IDENTITY – 3-4

    “that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition” – modern translations follow the
    MSS evidence that reads “lawlessness” instead of “sin” (primarily in Vaticanus &
    Sinaiticus – not in the majority of texts).

    1B. His DEPRAVITY will go unchecked
    “man of sin” – cf. Daniel 11:37-38

    2B. His DESTINY is already settled
    “son of perdition” – cf. Rev. 19:20; 20:10
    Cf. John 17:12 – Judas: “son of perdition”

    3B. His DETERMINATION to be honored above every one and every thing – 4a
    “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is
    worshipped.” – cf. Daniel 7:8, 11, 20, 25; 11:36-37

    4B. His DECISION to sit in the temple of God will be the final evidence of his
    real identity – 4b

    4A. THE DAY OF HIS REVELATION IS IMPOSSIBLE UNTIL THE RESTRAINT IS
    REMOVED – 5-8A

    v. 6 – “that he might be revealed in his time”

    v. 7-8 – “until HE be taken out of the way… and then shall that Wicked be
    revealed”

    All Greek MSS read “lawless One” not “Wicked.”

    5A. HIS DESTRUCTION WILL COME WHEN OUR LORD RETURNS IN ALL HIS
    GLORY – 8
    “whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with
    the brightness of His coming” – cf. Rev. 19:19-20

    6A. HIS DEEDS WILL BE INSPIRED BY SATAN HIMSELF – 9
    “whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and
    lying wonders” – NIV – “displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles”
    Cf. Rev. 13:4, 12-14

    7A. HIS DECEPTION WILL AFFECT THOSE THAT PERISH – 10
    “with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish”
    Cf. Rev. 13:8; 17:8 – cf. 1 Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 3:1-5, 13

    8A. THE DELUSION WILL COME FROM GOD HIMSELF – 11
    “and for this cause (cf. v. 10b) God shall send them strong delusion, that they
    should believe a (literally – “the”) lie.”

    9A. THE DAMNATION OF ALL THOSE WHO ARE DECEIVED WILL COME – 12
    “that they all might be damned”

    two reasons:
    1B. Because they did not believe the truth!
    2B. Because they delighted in unrighteousness!

    Like

  23. 03/05/2012 at 8:22 PM

    nickelsaver

    Before the world can look at deal with some form of currency should it all collapse would we not have to somehow eliminate all of the debit that the world has accumilated – It is hard to envision any new financial system working without dealing with the debit crisis first and foremost.

    Like

  24. ICA
    03/05/2012 at 8:43 PM

    Nickelsaver, “Let’s just look at 2 Thess 2:8 in context with all of 2 Thess 2:1-12 and support text. This is a full breakdown by David Hocking”

    The “apostasia” is — according to David Hocking — the “departure” of the Church. In other words, according to David Hocking the rapture will not happen until the rapture happens. I wonder if he realizes what he is teaching.

    Mr. Hocking also says that the Day of the Lord is the time of Antichrist’s revealing. He doesn’t seem to understand when the Day of the Lord occurs according to Scripture: It is the Second Coming of Christ. The pre-trib position, as evidenced by Mr. Hocking, strains to stretch the Day of the Lord to include the entire “tribulaton”, but there are passages that absolutely forbid the Day of the Lord from overlapping into the tribulation. The two are mutually exclusive.

    Here are five examples:

    1. Throughout the Old Testament, very specific “celestial signs” are associated with the coming of the Day of the Lord. The darkening of the sun and moon will usher in that day (Isa 13:9,10, Isa 24:19-23, Joel 3:13-15). Here is one example.

    Joel 2:31 “The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD.

    Matt 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.”

    These verses establish a clear sequence of events. They place the cosmic signs, the darkening of the sun and moon, between the end of the tribulation and the beginning of the Day of the Lord. This absolutely forbids any overlapping of the tribulation into the Day of the Lord. They are distinct events. No other interpretation is possible without purposefully twisting these passages.

    2. The very first time the Day of the Lord is mentioned in the Bible, the text clearly forbids associating it with the tribulation. Isaiah describes the “Day of the Lord” as follows:

    Isa 2:10-19, “Enter into the rock, and hide in the dust, From the terror of the LORD And the glory of His majesty. The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, The haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, And the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. For the day of the LORD of hosts Shall come upon everything proud and lofty, Upon everything lifted up — And it shall be brought low — Upon all the cedars of Lebanon that are high and lifted up, And upon all the oaks of Bashan; Upon all the high mountains, And upon all the hills that are lifted up; Upon every high tower, And upon every fortified wall; Upon all the ships of Tarshish, And upon all the beautiful sloops. The loftiness of man shall be bowed down, And the haughtiness of men shall be brought low; The LORD alone will be exalted in that day, But the idols He shall utterly abolish. They shall go into the holes of the rocks, And into the caves of the earth, From the terror of the LORD And the glory of His majesty, When He arises to shake the earth mightily.”

    Twice these verses indicate that the Lord alone will be exalted in the Day of the Lord. This is an exclusive statement. No one else can be exalted or worshipped during the Day of the Lord. Yet, during the tribulation, Mr. Hocking would concur that Antichrist will be worshipped as God (Rev 13:3-8,14, 2 Thess 2:4) and his image will be worshipped as well. Isaiah’s statements about the Lord alone being exalted, and the idols being abolished during the Day of the Lord forbids any overlapping with the tribulation and reign of Antichrist.

    3. Zechariah 14:7 indicates that the Day of the Lord may just be one literal day. The Hebrew text says “one day”:

    Zechariah 14:1,7, “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee… But it shall be one day (echad yowm) which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, [that] at evening time it shall be light.”

    Also see Isaiah 10:17:

    Isa 10:17, “And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame: and it shall burn and devour his thorns and his briers in one day (echad yowm)“.

    4. In Isaiah 13:9, Joel 2:1 and Zech 14:1 we read in each of these verses that “the Day of the Lord COMETH”, and in each verse the text immediately begins to describe the battle of Armageddon. The word “cometh” or “at hand” is the Hebrew word “bow” and it means “to come” or “arrive”, and it implies the beginning of the Day of the Lord. In each case the arrival of the Day of the Lord brings about the battle of Armageddon.

    5. Joel 3:9-17 describes the gathering of the armies of the nations around Jerusalem for the battle of Armageddon, the cosmic signs, and the coming of the Lord. After the armies are gathered, but before the cosmic signs, Joel wrote that the Day of the Lord is “near.” The Hebrew word means “at hand,” “imminent,” or “next in sequence”. The Day of the Lord must begin after the armies of the nations are gathered for the battle, which occurs at the end of the tribulation, according to Rev 16:13-16.

    The pre-trib position tries to stretch the Day of the Lord into the tribulation, but no one has ever provided any biblical requirement for doing so — because it cannot be done. In fact, none of the Old Testament passages support this pre-trib idea, as we can see above.

    Like

    • 03/05/2012 at 9:34 PM

      The “apostasia” is — according to David Hocking — the “departure” of the Church. In other words, according to David Hocking the rapture will not happen until the rapture happens. I wonder if he realizes what he is teaching.

      That is not what he is saying. He is say that the rapture will preclude the revealing of the A/C. How do get what you said out of that?

      I’m only going to deal these at a time until we come to resolution on each one.

      Like

    • A. S
      03/06/2012 at 1:31 AM

      The rapture and the day of the Lord are two separate events. The day of the Lord is the second coming of Jesus to earth, the rapture is him coming for his church to take them out, he never sets foot on earth during that event. I think it is mistaking these two events to be
      the same thing that causes so much confusion in interpretation. An end of tribulation rapture
      makes absolutely no sense, it would be pointless and totally unnecessary at that time. If you
      are being counted worthy to escape all these things, how would you be escaping it by being left until the end, and what point is there when at the end is when Jesus returns to earth to set up his kingdom, he returns with his saints, so apparently they are already with him.

      Like

    • 04/30/2012 at 5:31 AM

      Hey ICA, a brief note as I listen to house music and read the blog. A guy somewhat aligned with Hocking stated a few months ago that the word apostasia meant something different now than it did back when it was written. By this they say it meant rapture/departure and through the years has been changed. You know the rest: since the HS holding back evil, and departs, and it is in us, then we are gone and no longer holding back evil. I must disagree about the evil part first. The amount of evil today is to a very vile level if you really want to see it, it is there for one to see. What is the church doing to hold it back exactly? I’ve done research into this and it is far more shocking than the pre-tribbers realize. If that statement were true then do something pre-trib guys and stop evil. I believe it was a point you made or steven (skydiver) made that nobody can proclaim that Jesus is the Christ but by the Holy Spirit. SO, how would the Jewish 144,000 (according to pre-trib) after the church is gone, make this confession. Very solid question…

      What is amazing ICA, is that many comments within this blog appeal to authority as evidence. Many people are quoting Hocking, CC, and similar pre-trib advocates. Since a pastor can’t be mislead nor fooled, and he is an authority because God made him a pastor, then he is obviously right and some guy on the internet is wrong.

      I have heard this before and I am sad at this type of thinking, it is very unberean-like. We are living in a time in which was written about. There is mass confusion due to misinformation, re-writing history and misrepresentation of facts. Why do nothing to check and verify what is being said in church? Just go on Sunday, get your coffee, feel good about you, and get ‘fed’. Often times I have seen a method being used that I do not care for. Someone reads you the verse and then says ‘well doesn’t the bible say that’? but include a reading-into explanation included.

      I do read commentaries but they have to be weighed carefully. Your blog is very solid and I appreicate the amount of time and thought that goes into it as well as the time that goes into answering almost every question. 5 stars, God bless, JJ JHS

      Like

  25. 03/05/2012 at 8:57 PM

    Willard,

    There is default (non-payment of debt) and devaluation (payment with weaker and weaker dollars). Collapse typically comes with both. The devaluation is happening as we speak QE; QE2; QE3? Hyperinflation (HI) of the currency is an inevitable byproduct of devaluation. But by the time HI is evident to the masses, it will already be too late, collapse will come. I would expect the USG to pass on as much of the debt to private hands before a reset of the currency is done. To be honest, not sure the dollar will survive a reset. If it does, were talking about a current dollar having the spending power of pennies, if that.

    Gold will not only retain its value, it will increase perhaps 20 to 30 fold in value. This is because the worlds central banks are and have acquired gold to serve as the reserve asset for the reset. Want to learn about it? fofoa.blogspot.com

    Like

  26. ICA
    03/05/2012 at 9:54 PM

    Nickelsaver, “I have never heard of ‘Birth pains’ or ‘pangs’ explained in any other context except earthquakes and volcanoes. How do you justify interpreting a man-made financial system with what is an obvious description of a creation related phenomenon?”

    Man-made disasters are also part of the “birth pains” as well (nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom). But the collapse of man-made financial systems or economies could easily result from a significant natural calamity as well, anything from a volcanic eruption (look at the havoc that a relatively small eruption in Iceland caused a couple of years ago), to a mega-earthquake under a key global economy such as Japan, to a direct hit from a strong X-class solar storm or asteroid, etc., not to mention a severe famine or biological pandemic. It wouldn’t take long for a natural disaster to create an economic collapse — especially when financial infrastructures are already weakened — which would then have a ripple effect across the globe.

    “We live in a world that is becoming increasingly unstable, and the potential for an event that could cause ‘sudden change’ to the U.S. economy is greater than ever. There are dozens of potentially massive threats that could easily push the U.S. economy over the edge during the next 12 months. A war in the Middle East, a financial collapse in Europe, a major derivatives crisis or a horrific natural disaster could all change our economic situation very rapidly.” (Source).

    Like

    • 03/06/2012 at 1:37 AM

      It’s hardly worth arguing about, but a global economic collapse at this point is inevitable, with or without a natural disaster. It certainly would fall into the nation against nation category though.

      Like

  27. ICA
    03/05/2012 at 10:27 PM

    Nickelsaver, “That is not what he [David Hocking] is saying. He is say that the rapture will preclude the revealing of the A/C. How do get what you said out of that?”

    The Apostle Paul says that our gathering to Christ is the Day of the Lord in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3. Here it is slightly condensed:

    “concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him … [do not] become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy … saying that the day of the Lord has already come … for [that day will not come] until the [apostasia] occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed …”

    Paul ties in the Day of the Lord with our gathering to Christ. He is saying that our gathering (rapture) will not happen until the falling away (apostasy) happens and the man of sin is revealed first. But, in an effort to support a pre-trib presupposition, David Hocking contends that the “apostasia” is the departure of the Church and is effectively saying that the gathering (rapture) will not happen until the departure (rapture) happens first (!).

    I agree with David Hocking that Paul is talking about the rapture here in 2 Thessalonians 2:1, but Hocking fails to realize that Paul uses the word “episynagōgē” (G1997) here when referring to the rapture as “our gathering”, which is from the word “episynagō” (G1996) — the exact word that Christ used in Matthew 24:31 regarding the gathering of the elect immediately after the tribulation. In explaining the rapture, Paul is in fact referring directly to Christ’s own teaching in the Olivet Discourse and connects the “watching” for the rapture with Jesus’ instructions for His disciples to be watching for His coming “immediately after the tribulation“. In other words, Paul is teaching us that the rapture is post-trib, not pre-trib.

    This becomes even more evident when we compare all of Paul’s teaching on the rapture in 1 Thess 4 and 1 Thess 5 and how it parallels with Christ’s own teaching of the Olivet Discourse. Notice the following:

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Coming of the Lord From Heaven

    Jesus: Matt 24:30 “…they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 4:16 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven…”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Angel(s)

    Jesus: Matt. 24:31 “…He shall send forth His angels…”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 4:16 “with the voice of the archangel…”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Trumpet Blast

    Jesus: Matt. 24:31 “…with the sound of a trumpet…”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 4:16 “…with the trumpet of God”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Catching up of the Living

    Jesus: Matt. 24:31 “…they shall gather together His elect…”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 4:17 “…shall be caught up together…”

    Paul Referred To Jesus – Thief in the Night

    Jesus: Matt. 24:43 “…if the master … had known what hour the thief would come…”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 5:1,2 “…so cometh as a thief in the night.”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Warning Against “Sleeping”

    Jesus: Mark 13:36 “lest coming suddenly He find you sleeping.”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 5:6 “…let us not sleep as do others”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – Warning Against “Drunkenness”

    Jesus: Luke 21:34 “take heed … lest your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 5:6-8 “be sober … they that are drunken are drunken in the night … be sober”

    Paul Referred to Jesus – “Watching” for Christ’s Coming

    Jesus: Mark 13:35-37 “Watch ye therefore … What I say unto you, I say unto all, Watch.”
    Paul: 1 Thess. 5:6 “let us watch…”

    This is not just some simple yet astounding coincidence. Even in 2 Thess 2 we see where Paul again alludes to Christ’s own teaching on the Olivet Discourse and teaches a post-trib rapture:

    Paul – two things take place before the gathering:

    1. Paul says that that day (the Day of the Lord and our gathering to Him) will not come unless “there come a falling away first …”.
    2. “… and the Man of Sin be revealed, the son of perdition… who sitteth in the Temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”

    Jesus – two things take place before the gathering:

    1. Before the gathering of His elect, Jesus says “Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved” (Mat 24:9-13).
    2. “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand)” (Mat 24:15).

    Paul teaches the same thing as Jesus. Jesus taught a post-trib gathering of the elect that would be preceded by a departure from the faith and the revealing of the man of sin. Paul also taught a post-trib gathering of the elect, preceded by a departure from the faith and the revealing of the man of sin.

    1 Tim 4:1, “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith …”

    When all of this is laid out and considered in their full context only one inescapable conclusion can be drawn: Paul referred to Jesus when speaking about our gathering (rapture), and Jesus spoke of this gathering and Himself stated that it was immediately after the tribulation.

    Like

    • 03/06/2012 at 2:11 AM

      ICA,

      This is where we disagree regarding what is meant by “that day” and the “falling away”
      When Paul speaks of “that day” he is referring to the second coming, not the rapture. This is the view that you hold too, since you don’t believe that there is a difference between the two. On the other hand, the “falling away” does not refer to the Christian church falling into an a state of apostasy, it refers to the rapture. He goes on to list all of the different uses of the word apostasia(noun) and aphistemi(verb) in scripture.

      The very qualifying words “from the faith” are needed to describe what kind of
      “departure” it is – nothing like this is in our text. The definite article is used with
      the word which implies a specific departure, just mentioned in 2 Thess. 2:1, and in
      1 Thess. 4:13-18.

      In other words, the text reads “the departure”. It does not read, “a departing from the faith”

      You and I are going to watch the tribulation happen together from above. And i’m going to put my hand on your shoulder and say, “It’s all good brother” Because the moment we put on the incorruptible, there will be no shame and no guilt.

      Shalom

      Like

  28. ICA
    03/06/2012 at 1:13 PM

    Nickelsaver, “This is where we disagree regarding what is meant by “that day” and the “falling away” When Paul speaks of “that day” he is referring to the second coming, not the rapture. This is the view that you hold too, since you don’t believe that there is a difference between the two. On the other hand, the “falling away” does not refer to the Christian church falling into an a state of apostasy, it refers to the rapture. He goes on to list all of the different uses of the word apostasia(noun) and aphistemi(verb) in scripture.”

    Hi Brother, are you interpreting Scripture to conform to your understanding, or are you allowing your understanding to conform to Scripture? There is nothing in the text that would lead us to conclude that “that day” refers to the Second Coming, and not the rapture. Only a presupposition that isn’t there. In fact, Paul is clear that our gathering to Christ and the Day of the Lord are one and the same, not two separate events.

    2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 is so detrimental to the idea of a pre-trib rapture that the only answer pre-trib teachers can provide is a completely distorted and strained explanation of the plain and straightforward teaching clearly laid out by Paul. Throughout the history of Christendom every single teacher, theologian, scholar, commentator, translator et al all understood what “apostasia” referred to, and it was never a “physical departure” as in the “rapture”. It wasn’t until the idea of a “pre-trib” rapture starting creeping into the Church in the mid-late 19th century that some attempted to conveniently change its inconvenient meaning.

    Nowhere in Scripture does “apostasia” ever refer to “physical departure”, either in the Greek LXX (Joshua 22:22; 2 Chron 29:19; Jer 2:19) or the New Testament (Acts 21:21). It is always understood as falling away or departing from the faith. Even pre-trib scholar Paul Feinberg admits that “If one searches for the uses of the noun ‘apostasy’ in the 355 occurrences over the 300-year period between the second century B.C. and the first century A.D., one will not find a single instance where this word refers to a physical departure.” (Robert R Ramirez, The Complete Layman’s Guide to End Times Prophecy a Biblical Perspective, p 280). This is again demonstrated in The Vocabulary of the Greek Testament Illustrated from the Papyri and Other Non-Literary Sources by Moulton and Milligan. The word “apostasia” is never used to refer to a “physical departure”, because it is only used in a political or religious defection sense (p. 68-69).

    Nickelsaver, “The very qualifying words ‘from the faith’ are needed to describe what kind of ‘departure’ it is – nothing like this is in our text.”

    The word is not “departure” in the Greek. It is “apostasia”, and the “qualifying” words “from the faith” are not required because that intent is already understood by definition. If “from the faith” were required to qualify what “apostasia” referred to, then why wouldn’t “from the earth” be required for David Hocking’s explanation, especially when “apostasia” by definition never refers to a physical departure?

    This is devastating to the pre-trib argument and destroys the contention that “apostasia” refers to a pre-trib rapture. Additionally, if Paul wanted to convey the meaning of a physical departure he would have used a word that conveyed such a meaning, such as “kataleipō” (G2641) which means to physically “depart from” or “leave”, or even “chōrizō” (G5563) which means “to depart” or to “go away”. But he did not. In fact, the Holy Spirit did not even inspire Paul to use the word “aphistemi” (G868). None of these words were used by the Holy Spirit for a very good reason: because “physical departure” is not the intended meaning.

    Nickelsaver, “You and I are going to watch the tribulation happen together from above.”

    We’re already in the tribulation my friend. Our Christian brothers and sisters are, right now as I write this, being shot, blown up, stabbed, tortured, beheaded, raped, imprisoned, etc. simply because of the fact that they hold fast to the faith of Jesus. There is a genocide of Christians taking place throughout the Islamic world, while many Christians in the West still expect a secret pre-trib rapture.

    ‘Bloody’: Christian Persecution is ‘Coursing Through Muslim-Majority Nations from One End of the Globe to the Other’

    ‘The Most Important International Story Not Being Told by the Mainstream Media’: Christian Persecution in the Middle East

    ‘A New Evil is Sweeping the Middle East: Religious Cleansing’, Anti-Christian Violence Throughout Middle-East Concerns London

    Genocide Warning – Urge President Obama to Defend Mideast Christians

    Dr. Rob Dalrymple: Bethlehem and the Middle East – The Very Birth Place of Christianity – Threatens to be Extinct of Christians

    Egypt: Rising Islamic Leader Declares ‘We Will Launch a Campaign of Islamic Conquest Throughout the World’, ‘Exterminate’ Christians Who Get In the Way of Sharia Law

    Like

  29. ICA
    03/06/2012 at 1:37 PM

    A. S., “If you are being counted worthy to escape all these things, how would you be escaping it by being left until the end, and what point is there when at the end is when Jesus returns to earth to set up his kingdom, he returns with his saints, so apparently they are already with him.”

    Many have used Luke 21:36 to support a pre-trib rapture, which says, “Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.” Let’s look at Luke 21:36 in its proper context and examine the words of Christ in the Gospel of Luke:

    Luke 21:25-28, “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars… At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

    Many who assume a pre-trib rapture often point to “begin” and say it only means the first few signs mentioned earlier in the chapter, but Jesus says “When these things begin to take place” AFTER describing the cosmic signs that we are told happens immediately after the tribulation in Matt 24:29-31. The fact that Jesus does not say “when these things begin to take place” before mentioning those post-trib signs is very significant.

    A couple of verses later, in Luke 21:31, Jesus says “when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand”, and again these things INCLUDE the cosmic signs and the coming of the Son of Man immediately after the tribulation mentioned a few verses earlier.

    Now let’s look at Luke 21:34-36:

    Luke 21:34-36, “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, [referring to “that day”] and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”

    What day is “that day”? Jesus just gave us cosmic signs that Joel 2:31 says will happen just BEFORE the Day of the Lord, but immediately AFTER the tribulation according to His own words in Matt 24:29.

    Joel 2:31, “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.”

    Matthew 24:29, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken”

    Therefore, “that day” that Jesus is referring to in Luke 21:34 is the Day of the Lord. It is the day of Christ’s judgment, of His Divine Wrath – the “orge” that we as believers are not appointed to suffer (1 Thess 5:9 – read more here). The Greek for “escape” in Luke 21:36 is “ekpheugō” (G1628) and is used elsewhere to refer to escaping the judgment of God (Romans 2:3).

    The Apostle Paul even parallels this perfectly when telling us about the gathering of the elect (rapture):

    1 Thess 5:2,4,6 “For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the nightBut ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief… Therefore let us not sleep, as [do] others; but let us watch and be sober.”

    So how do we escape? Paul ties in the Day of the Lord with the gathering (rapture) in 1 and 2 Thessalonians, and tells us to watch for that day just as Jesus does in Luke 21:36. Since we know that the Day of the Lord takes place immediately after the tribulation (read here), the escape — and therefore the rapture — is post-trib as well.

    Like

    • A. S
      03/07/2012 at 3:00 AM

      There is some teaching that the elect is not referring to the church, the church and the elect are two different groups of people, the elect being the jews who come out of the tribulation and do not accept the mark. Which means the rapture is parts. And again, raptured to where at the end of tribulation, Jesus is not going back to heaven, but setting up his kingdom on earth for the thousand year reign, it says he is coming with is saints, where are the saints coming from ? the rapture and decent back to earth are in the same second ? I don’lt care how many scriptures are twisted to support a post “trib” rapture it just makes no logical sense and serves no purpose, what are you escaping at the end ?. The rapture and Second coming are separate. But again, done debating this, got things to do, life does not stand still regardless of what is or isn’t happening right now.

      Like

  30. 03/06/2012 at 3:27 PM

    Nickelsaver, A.S. and other pre-trib believers,

    I don’t know how people can look at scripture only, not ‘this or that famous prophecy teacher’, and come to any other conclusion than that the return of Christ/transformation of the saints is the same, singular event that occurs after the tribulation. If you read what ICA has painstakingly laid out for you, from scripture alone and comparing it with scripture alone, it is fairly simple.

    I like people like Chuck Smith, Calvary Chapel pastors and many of the pre-Trib prophecy teachers, but they are not correct on this teaching.

    Kurt

    Like

  31. 03/06/2012 at 4:03 PM

    Nickelsaver, A.S. and other pre-trib believers,

    Let’s play a hypothetical for a moment: Assume ICA (and a whole bunch more of us) are correct on two counts:

    #1 The return of Christ and rapture of the saints is post-trib, and
    #2 The Beast that recovers from the fatal head-wound is actually the revival of Islamic strength and hegemony in the M.E.

    What would be the effect on the “pre-Trib-believing” believers? I can think of several:

    1. Inability to recognize biblical fulfillment of scripture – that the Beast is arising before their very eyes.

    2. Perhaps accommodation of the Beast (i.e., Rick Warren) and the frog in the boiling water effect…doesn’t know to jump out until its too late.

    3. Lack of preparation for the difficulties right around the corner, although I guarantee the believers most affected by the Beast, those in the M.E., have no pre-trib rapture illusions are fully in touch with scriptural teachings, being in tribulation NOW.

    4. Disillusionment when their expected “ticket out” gets lost in the mail.

    5. Inability to preach the truth to the world – they need to repent as the tribulations get hotter, or face the wrath of the soon returning Lamb.

    There are certainly other effects, but these are significant, if scripture teaches a post-trib, singular, second (and not also a third) return of Christ.

    Kurt

    Like

    • A. S
      03/06/2012 at 5:25 PM

      We are not in the tribulation. And if if of the “day and hour no one knows but the father in heaven” and it can “overtake you as a thief”, explain how it can overtake you by surprise
      if you are at the end of the tribulation, which you would be able to calculate by years, and now are seeing Israel surrounded by armies ? you would know this is the time right ? Makes
      no sense, and that’s the last Im going to say on it, because we could all waste the rest of our lives debating this point instead of doing something constructive with the time we have and live our precious lives instead of watching the skies all day. Peace

      Like

    • 04/30/2012 at 5:48 AM

      hey KJ, that is probably the simplest best explanation of the negative fallout to occur concurrently with tribulation preceding the SHINING FIERY GLORIOUS LOUD MARVELOUS COMING of Jesus Christ. hehe. My top 2 points in your comment are your first 2. The inablity to further contemplate eschatological prophecy since the pretrib mindset is wrapped around one idea that precedes the hard stuff. The accomodation of the false prophet and his crew is huge as well and most liely being put in place right now. No further comment, I think you are correct in your assumption though.

      BTW, I am not doing so hot in life right now and I know it will get worse. I pray to remain in the faith, as mine has taken a huge hit, until the end of the race and persevere with the Holy Spirit guiding me nack home through the spiritual trenches. What is sad my friend is that my pretrib guys do not offer me any real advice except wait for the rapture. When I am miserable in my afflictions, it is because I never had the joy of the Lord to begin with. Are you serious? I am going through a lot. We are to be helpers of each others joy but Kurt, I am surrounded by Job’s friends and pre-tribbers. God bless, JJ JHS

      Like

      • 04/30/2012 at 10:20 AM

        I’ll pray for you JJJ. May Yeshua be close to you and reveal His love for you, to you.

        Like

        • 04/30/2012 at 11:49 AM

          I appreciate your prayer. Thank you God bless you b’shem Yeshua as well.

          Like

  32. ICA
    03/06/2012 at 5:39 PM

    A. S, “We are not in the tribulation. And if if of the “day and hour no one knows but the father in heaven” and it can “overtake you as a thief”, explain how it can overtake you by surprise if you are at the end of the tribulation, which you would be able to calculate by years, and now are seeing Israel surrounded by armies ?”

    It does *not* overtake us as a thief:

    1 Thessalonians 5:2,4,6, “For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night … But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief … Therefore let us not sleep, as others [do], but let us watch and be sober.”

    As for not knowing the “day or the hour”, many miss the point that Jesus was making in Matthew 24. Look at Revelation 3:3 and pay close attention to what Jesus is saying:

    Revelation 3:3, “Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. IF therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.”

    This statement by Jesus uses the exact same language as verses that many use to state that we can never know (Matt. 24:36; 25:13; Mark 13:32) and reveals something that is very significant and profound: IF we do not watch He WILL come upon us as a thief and we WILL NOT know what hour He will come upon us. If this verse is true, then the inverse must also be true: If we DO watch, He WILL NOT come upon us as a thief, and we WILL know.

    Jesus does *not* say anywhere in Matthew 24 or elsewhere that we can not know and that we will never know. Jesus is merely saying, in the present tense per the Greek, that we do not know *right now* when He will return. A few verses later in Matthew 24:42 Jesus tells us to WATCH for the signs that He just gave us. Why watch? Watch so that we CAN KNOW, because today we do not know the day or hour of His return. His entire point was that it was a BAD THING to not know, which He repeated again in Revelation 3:3, and which the Apostle Paul reiterates for us in his epistle to the church in Thessalonica saying “you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief … Therefore let us not sleep, as others [do], but let us watch …”

    Like

  33. 03/06/2012 at 6:42 PM

    Seriously A.S., consider what ICA just wrote above. Could not have said it more clearly.

    Like

  34. 03/06/2012 at 8:15 PM

    We’re already in the tribulation my friend.

    When did this tribulation start?
    When will it end?

    Matthew 24:14-15 NKJV
    And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. So when you see standing in the holy place the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel…

    This certainly does not refer to the Dome of the Rock. The Holy Place is a specific room within the temple. The text does not read that the AoD would be on the ground of where the temple used to stand. And it speaks of a man standing. Not a building.

    Futhermore,. the Dome of the Rock does not sit where the Holy Place was located in the past. it is located in the outer court of the former temple mount.

    http://www.calvarybible.org/node/637

    The AoD clearly indicates the midpoint of the 7 year tribulation. And those that are aware of the scripture and witness the AoD will then be able to calculate the exact moment of the Second Coming.

    While the Temple and Jerusalem were destroyed in 70 AD, that was not the fulfillment of these verses (as the preterists and historicists claim). The sequence of the prophetic events from Daniel 9:12 and Daniel 12 is that a peace treaty would have to be struck 3.5 years before the abomination of desolation. Then the sacrifices are stopped, and the abomination of desolation performed in the Temple takes place where a person declares himself falsely to be God in the holy place of the Temple. Only after those events do the armies surround Jerusalem. Then exactly 1290 days later the Messiah comes visibly to reign on the earth. 45 days after the Second Coming, all the people of the earth are judged. During the 45 days, all governments and armies on earth are defeated and subdued.

    In 70 AD, armies did surround Jerusalem, but it was before the sacrifices were stopped. There was no abomination of desolation where a person declared himself falsely to be God and demanded worship. There was no mark of the beast system (666), where if a person refused the mark, they couldn’t buy or sell. Finally, the Second Coming visibly did not take place 1290 days after the destruction in 70 AD. The Roman armies continued their dominance for hundreds of years. The people of the earth were not judged visibly standing before the Messiah. And Isaiah 65 was not fulfilled where people’s lifespans increased so much, that a youth would die at the age of one hundred years. Only a foolish person would believe or teach that 70 AD fulfilled all the prophecies.

    Let’s go on with our proofs of the 7 year period. In Rev 12:6, Israel (the woman, here is one of those figurative symbols within a literal timeline) flees into the wilderness for 1260 days, persecuted by the world system under the antichrist, a minion of satan.

    Revelation 12:6 And the woman fled into the wilderness where she had a place prepared by God, so that there she might be nourished for 1260 days.

    Revelation 12:14 And the two wings of the great eagle were given to the woman, in order that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she was nourished for a time and times and half a time from the presence of the serpent.

    The first thing to notice is that verses 6 & 14 tell the same thing, but the timeframe is defined differently. 1260 days = time , times, and half a time = 3.5 (years). This is the same exact thing mentioned in Daniel 12:7, except that Daniel 7 calls them the holy people, Israel. The woman in Revelation 12 is Israel. Revelation 12:4-5 amplifies that point, since it states that the woman gives birth to the Messiah, the one who will rule all nations. The woman is not Mary, since in Daniel 12 and elsewhere, the prophecies speak of the Jewish people when it talks about the same exact prophecies. Christians all know that Yeshua (Jesus) was born and lived as a Jew.

    In Revelation 13:5, we are given an additional corroborating piece of the puzzle.

    Revelation 13:5-7 And there was given to him a mouth speaking arrogant words and blasphemies; and authority to act for 42 months was given to him. And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, that is, those who dwell in heaven. And it was given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them; and authority over every tribe and people and tongue was given to him.

    Revelation 13 tells us the same thing as Revelation 12 and Daniel 12, that the beast (antichrist) has an allotted period of power of 42 months, and he will persecute the Jewish people for that timeframe. He will also persecute the Christians as is shown in Revelation 12:17.

    Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.

    While the evidence is that satan through the antichrist will persecute Christians too for a season, the main point is that the persecution of the Jewish people is for 42 months. Therefore:

    1260 days = time, times, and half a time = 42 months = 3.5 years
    I suppose that God added these different methods of describing the same timeframe, in order that people wouldn’t foolishly say that it is a day for a year and the 1260 days is actually 1260 years. It is described in every possible way, to avoid misunderstanding the point. The 1260 days of allotted power for the antichrist are actually 24-hour days, and equal 42 months, or 3.5 years. Daniel 7 also describes the allotted time of power of the beast (antichrist) and it is the same 3.5 year period.

    Daniel 7:25 And he will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time.

    Here we again have the abomination of desolation mentioned, when the beast will speak out against the Most High by falsely declaring himself to be God. He will be allowed to persecute the Jewish people for a time, times, and half a time (3.5 times = 3.5 years = 1260 days = 42 months).

    Which takes us back to Daniel 9:27 and the week of years. All of the above shows that included in the last half of the week of years is the 1260 days=3.5 years=3.5 times=42 months of the antichrist’s allotted period of power on the earth. All of the 1260 days is included in the 1290 days in Daniel 12:11, from the time of the abomination of desolation until Yeshua (Jesus) comes to reign on the earth.

    The only way that someone can not believe this proof, is if they suddenly say they take all prophecy figuratively and don’t believe the Bible is literal. The internal proofs for a literal end-times 7 year period are extremely strong, with the last half being 1290 days long. How will you face the facts?

    This source was quoted for the latter half of the above response
    http://ad2004.com/prophecytruths/Articles/Prophecy/7yrsproof.html

    Like

  35. ICA
    03/06/2012 at 9:05 PM

    Nickelsaver, “When did this tribulation start?”

    It began nearly 2000 years ago since the time of the Apostles. Tens of millions of Christians have died for their faith throughout the centuries. In fact, some historians even believe that more Christians have been persecuted and murdered for the faith of Jesus in the 20th century alone than all of the prior 19 centuries combined.

    John 16:33, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

    Acts 14:22, “Confirming the souls of the disciples, [and] exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

    Rom 5:3, “And not only [so], but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience”

    Rom 8:35, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? [shall] tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?”

    Rom 12:12, “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer”

    2 Cor 1:4, “Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble…”

    2 Cor 7:4, “Great [is] my boldness of speech toward you, great [is] my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.”

    1 Thess 3:4, “For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know.”

    Some believe that we have been experiencing “great tribulation” since 70 AD, while others like myself believe that the worst is yet to soon come and will last for 3.5 prophetic years.

    Nickelsaver, “When will it end?”

    With the Second Coming of Christ. Romans 11:25b-26, “… blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: ‘The Deliverer will come out of Zion, And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob'”. “All Israel” includes you and I. As Gentiles who believe in Yeshua, we have been grafted into the Israel of God. Before Messiah we were “aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one … so as to create in Himself one new man [from] the two … that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross … Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God” (Eph 2:12-19).

    Nickelsaver, “This [Abomination of Desolation] certainly does not refer to the Dome of the Rock… The text does not read that the AoD would be on the ground of where the temple used to stand. And it speaks of a man standing. Not a building.”

    Some view the AofD as already fulfilled in either 70 AD or with the Dome of the Rock. My current view is that the DotR is a type/shadow, and at this time I still see a future fulfillment of the Abomination of Desolation that will usher in “Great Tribulation”. The “Great Multitude” of Rev 7:9 come out of “Great Tribulation” (Rev 7:14), and in order for them to come out of it, they had to be in it. See “2 Thessalonians 2:4 — A Rebuilt Jewish Temple, or Something Else?“.

    Nickelsaver, “The Holy Place is a specific room within the temple.”

    Together, we are the temple, and each of us are now individual “rooms” of that temple, indwelt by God, holy and acceptable (John 14:23; 1 Cor 3:17, 6:19; Rom 12:1). See the article “‘… That Where I Am There You May Be Also’ – It Means More Than We Think“.

    Nickelsaver, “The AoD clearly indicates the midpoint of the 7 year tribulation.”

    Scripture never says anywhere, at any time, that the “tribulation” is 7 years, nor does it ever speak about a “peace treaty”. Those teachings are added to Scripture, not taught by it. See here. I do believe, however, that the AofD will begin the “countdown”. This is what we were told to watch for (Matthew 24:15, 24:42, 1 Thess 5:6) so that we can know (Revelation 3:3) when our Deliverer will return.

    Related Articles:

    * Al Aqsa Mosque Imam Claims that Future Caliphate Will Originate From Temple Mount
    * Hamas MP and Cleric: The Caliphate is Coming and in a Few Years a ‘Great Massacre of Jews’
    * Muslim Brotherhood Elder: ‘Jerusalem Belongs to Us, and the Whole World Belongs to Us … the Caliphate Will Return’

    Like

  36. 03/06/2012 at 10:43 PM

    ICA,

    This is the end of the road as far as challenging your views. i was correct in my previous statement the it would not matter what scripture I quoted, that you would interpret it through a different lens. I find it eerily similar to discussions with Jehovah’s Witnesses. (I’m not say that you are a Jehovah’s witness) We can look at the same scripture, and basically get a totally different understanding from it.

    Let’s just leave it at, “you won’t convince me and i won’t convince you”

    Peace

    Like

  37. 03/06/2012 at 10:54 PM

    Sorry, one last parting thought.

    John MacArther and Chuck missler both hold a pre-trib view. In fact, probably 99.99% of their teaching is in line with what I believe. Yet you claim that they have changed their views, at least in terms of a Muslim A/C, and offer that up as a carrot to those that may know of them.

    Let’s just be clear. What you teach is WAY different than what they teach.


    Like

  38. ICA
    03/06/2012 at 11:19 PM

    Nickelsaver, “i was correct in my previous statement the it would not matter what scripture I quoted, that you would interpret it through a different lens.”

    My mind was already changed once when I switched my view a number of years ago from pre-trib to post-trib. That’s when everything else finally began to fall into place and verses that had before given me questions suddenly began to make a lot more sense. The post-trib view provides clarity, and it’s a lens that I highly recommend, so there’s no reason for me to go back to a view that created more questions than it answered. Post-tribism is the Carl Zeiss of eschatology.

    Have you ever wondered why there are a large number of Christians who have changed their view from pre-trib to post-trib/pre-wrath, but only a tiny number by comparison who have changed their view from post-trib/pre-wrath to pre-trib?

    Nickelsaver, “I find it eerily similar to discussions with Jehovah’s Witnesses… We can look at the same scripture, and basically get a totally different understanding from it.”

    On non-essential doctrine, sure we’ll have disagreement. But on the essentials, we see eye to eye. Jehovah’s Witnesses wouldn’t agree with much of anything that you and I both agreed on.

    Nickelsaver, “Sorry, one last parting thought. John MacArther and Chuck missler both hold a pre-trib view. In fact, probably 99.99% of their teaching is in line with what I believe.”

    John MacArthur and Chuck Missler are great teachers, and I enjoy them quite a bit. But they were “born into” as it were and therefore bought into pre-tribism like many modern evangelicals without seriously studying the post-trib position. Fortunately, I don’t have to believe everything they teach in order to consider them great teachers. I, too, can point to other great teachers such as the late Walter Martin. Here he teaches a post-trib rapture:

    (Part 1 of 6)

    Prior to the mid 19th century pre-tribism was never taught by the Church. Nobody believed it. Nobody heard of it. The Church has always been post-trib historically, yet despite this fact efforts have been made by some “teachers” such as Grant Jeffery or Thomas Ice to somehow find documentation of pre-tribism prior to the 19th century. But their efforts have been demonstrably futile, and any “example” they’ve come up with has always turned out to be deceptively false.

    Nickelsaver, “Let’s just be clear. What you teach is WAY different than what they teach.”

    I teach post, they teach pre. But be wise brother — never simply believe anything that anyone says. Always test all things in light of Scripture, and hold fast to that which is good.

    Like

    • Ed
      03/07/2012 at 1:20 AM

      Great sermon by Walter Martin, I listened to all six parts. He was a real thinker. Loved the question he asked Hal Lindsey. I wish more churches and least presented the different views like this and let everyone decide for themselves.

      Like

    • John Jacob Jingleheimersmith
      04/25/2012 at 1:00 AM

      Carl Zeiss of eschatology? BUAHAUHAUHAAAAAAA!

      Like

  39. 03/07/2012 at 12:28 AM

    nickelsaver – I have had one question which no pretribber seems to be able to answer – if the rapture is to escape from the tribulation as I understand most teach – than why would the dead have to be raised first in 1 Th 4:16 – the dead are dead – how could the tribulation hurt those that are dead for how ever long. Why would the dead be raised pre-trid verses post-trib? The rapture would make some sense if it was strictly for removing the living from the tribulation but makes no sense to remove the dead.

    1Th 4:16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
    1Th 4:17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds d to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever

    Like

  40. 03/07/2012 at 2:36 AM

    Willard,

    So that all the church age saints can return with the LORD at the Second coming

    Missler talks about that too, near the end of this clip

    Like

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