One should take careful note here that this portion of Scripture is directed specifically at a "Christian audience." This is evidenced by the fact that this particular portion of Scripture is tied DIRECTLY to the parable of the "Unprofitable Servant" - someone who is called a "Servant of God," but who acts contrary to his calling. One should also take careful note of the fact that in the passage above (i.e., Matt. 25:31-46) Jesus identifies Himself UNWAVERINGLY with the poor and dispossessed of the world. It's not without reason that James warns us: "Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? (James 2:5) And he warns the rich: "Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you." What's that say, then, about the rich and powerful? Balzak was right when he said, "Behind every great fortune is a great crime." [Please see our article, "The Deceitful of Riches and the Marxist Paradigm;" please also see our article, "Capitalism and Christianity."]
Clearly, then, God intends to confirm our Christianity by the way we treat the poor and off-scouring of the earth; it will be validated or invalidated on how we treat the destitute and dispossessed of the world. Of course, this may not comport very well to what you have learned from your pastors and in the precincts of your effete, middle-class churches, but PLAINLY, this is what the Scriptures say - and what else would you expect from a Judge whose "Legal Script" reads in part:
"FOR THE LOVE OF MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." (1Tim 6:10) [That's ALL evil; not some evil, but ALL evil.]
This brings us to the matter of the Tribulation. The word, "Tribulation," means "test." It is derived from the Latin word, Tribulum, which means to press and subject to stress as in a test. But the word means more - it means to SEVERELY test; to press to the point of ANGUISH - much as a test pilot tests an experimental plane and presses it to its breaking point. [Again, please study our article, "The Tribulation: Acquiring a Kingdom Perspective."]
The Roman word, Tribune, is also derived from the Latin word Tribulum. A Tribune in ancient Rome was a magistrate or judge appointed to hear civil and criminal proceedings. It is the word from which our modern English word, "Tribunal," is derived - which means a seat of judgment. In all these instances, the word Tribulum [from which, once again, the English word "Tribulation" is derived] had a legal sense attached to it. It meant [in the sense that is appropriate here] pressure and stress applied to an object in order to test it.
This is the exact sense that the translators of the King James Version of the Bible were trying to convey when they translated the Greek word, Thlipsis, as Tribulation in Revelation 7:14. As with the Latin word, Tribulum, the Greek word, Thlipsis, means pressure and stress applied to an object for the purpose of testing.
This is substantiated by Revelation 3:10 when Jesus referred to the Tribulation as -
"... the hour of testing." (Rev. 3:10) [For those Christians who continue to believe in a rapture before the Tribulation Period, we urge you to read Chapter IV of the Antipas Papers, "The Great Escape: Misconceptions Concerning the Rapture."]
The Tribulation will be a period of seven years (about the length of a huge corporate trial) and will be divided into two distinct parts of three and one-half years apiece. The first half of the Tribulation Period is called the "Beginning of Sorrows;" the second half is called the "Great Tribulation." The dividing line between these two periods is an event called the "Abomination of Desolation" when, in effect, THE PROSECUTION WILL RIP THE MASK OF "CHRISTIANITY" FROM THE FACE OF THE DEFENDANT (i.e., THE AMERICAN NEW WORLD ORDER SYSTEM) AND REVEAL THE "BEAST" FOR WHOM HE REALLY IS: THE DEVIL'S PAW. [Please see Chapter V of the Antipas Papers, "Understanding the Book of Revelation."]
The entire course and character of the Tribulation Period are outlined in Matthew chapter twenty-four;
"And as he (Christ) sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the SIGN OF THY COMING, and of the END OF THE WORLD?
"And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you." (Matt. 24:3-4)
THE SEVEN SEALS
"For many shall come in my name, saying, I am the Christ: and shall deceive man.
"AND YE SHALL HEAR OF WARS AND RUMOURS OF WARS: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
"FOR NATIONS SHALL RISE AGAINST NATION, AND KINGDOM AGAINST KINGDOM: and there shall be FAMINES, and PESTILENCES, and EARTHQUAKES, in divers places.
"ALL THESE THINGS ARE THE BEGINNING OF SORROWS.
"Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
"And then shall many (who have merely professed to be Christians) be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
"And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
"And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
"And this GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM SHALL BE PREACHED IN ALL THE WORLD for a witness unto all nations, and THEN SHALL THE END COME." (Matt. 24:5-14) [Please see Chapter VII of the Antipas Papers, "The First Half of the Seventieth Week: the Seven Seals."]
"Then let them ... flee ..." [etc.] (Matt. 24:15-16) [Please see Chapter VIII of the Antipas Papers, "Midway through the Tribulation: the Abomination of Desolation;" please also see "Body, Soul and Spirit in the Antipas Papers" and "Post-Millennialism vs. Pre-Millennialism," also in the Antipas Papers.]
THE SEVEN TRUMPETS
"For then shall be GREAT TRIBULATION (the second half of the Seventieth Week) such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be (again)." (Matt. 24:21) [Please see Chapter IX of the Antipas Papers, "The Second Half of the Seventieth Week: The Seven Trumpets."]
THE SECOND COMING
"Immediately AFTER the tribulation of those days (the second half of the Seventieth Week) 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:
"AND THEN SHALL APPEAR THE SIGN OF THE SON OF MAN IN HEAVEN: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory,
"And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a TRUMPET [i.e., the trumpet spoken of in I Thess. 4:16-17: 'For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with ... the TRUMP of God AND THE DEAD IN CHRIST SHALL RISE FIRST: THEN WE WHICH ARE ALIVE AND REMAIN SHALL BE CAUGHT UP TOGETHER WITH THEM IN THE CLOUDS to meet the Lord in the air]; and they shall gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." (Matt. 24:29-31). [Please see Chapter IV of the Antipas Papers, "The Great Escape: Misconceptions Concerning the Rapture."]
THE SEVEN VIALS
[The Judgments &
Now, our purpose here is not to elaborate on all the matters that pertain to the Tribulation Period - i.e., the "hour of testing" - that shall "come upon the whole earth;" we have provided sufficient links for you (above) to study these matters on your own. Suffice it to say that we are very close to that time now, especially in view of the fact that this great period will be preceded by unprecedented FAMINES, PESTILENCES, EARTHQUAKES and other "natural disasters" in divers places. And isn't that exactly what's been happening? [Please see our article, "Fearful Sights and Great Signs from Heaven."]
Think about it! - IN LESS THAN A YEAR NOW WE HAVE SUFFERED -
Now, you must understand something: there is nothing normal about what's been happening here, as some would like you to believe. These events are UNPRECEDENTED in their magnitude and in the vast numbers of people killed - after all, the combined number of people killed in the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki fall short by more than half the number of people killed by the Indian Ocean tsunami last December, to say nothing about all the people who were killed in Pakistan and New Orleans. And who knows what's coming next?
Something very ominous and frightening is afoot! - A SIGNAL IS BEING SENT TO MANKIND BY THE "CLERK OF THE COURT:" THE COURT IS BEING CALLED TO ORDER! THE TRIAL IS READY TO START! MANKIND IS ABOUT TO BE JUDGED! AND IN THE COURSE OF THIS "PROCEEDNG" YOUR CHRISTIANITY WILL BE CALLED INTO QUESTION! And there is something more that you should understand: During this legal procedure, your vain "lifting up of holy hands" to the Lord, your eloquent, repetitious prayers, your false pieties and all other such similar nonsense will count for nothing. To all those HYPOCRITES who think they can hide behind such vanities, they would be well advised to remember what the Lord said to the prophet Amos concerning the false pieties of the people of Israel under similar circumstances:
"I HATE, I despise your feast (holy) days, and I ... [cannot abide] your solemn assemblies [your Sunday morning worship services].
"Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings [i.e., much prayer and sacrifice], I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings ....
"Take thou away from me the ... [music] of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols. (Amos 5:21-23)
God HATES such false pieties - and that's a heavy word: HATE! Believe me, then, when I tell you that during this "legal proceeding," all such worshipful pretensions will count for nothing. Again, it's what one actually does and how one actually comports himself during this time that will count. One's own actions will betray or reveal who one really is - whether for good or for evil.B. MORE SIGNALS THAT THE
In addition to these "signals from God" (i.e., famines, earthquakes, pestilences, etc.) that indicate the TIME IS AT HAND FOR JUDGMENT TO COME, there are a number of other indicators (signals) that we are near the "BEGINNING OF THE END," so to speak. I speak here most especially of the gathering storm in the Middle East - a storm the United States has placed itself in the middle of by its invasion of Iraq, making itself a central player in the hurricane of forces that are now gathering themselves together in that area of the world - a tornado of demonic frenzy that the Bible says will destroy five-sixths of the population of the Middle East (Ezek. 39:2). [Please see Chapter VI of the Antipas Papers, "The Gog/Magog War and the Treaty with Death and Hell;" please also see our article, Sowing the Seeds of the Gog/Magog War."]
The fact is, the Tribulation will be born of war and it will die in war: Specifically, the Gog/Magog War will initiate the great events of the Tribulation Period, and Armageddon will bring the Tribulation to an end.
In sheer size and scope, these two wars will dwarf all the conflicts that have preceded them. Indeed, the course and magnitude of both wars will stagger the imagination. Neither clash will be an isolated incident - the use of the Greek word polemos (Revelation 16:14) rather than the Greek word mache, clearly indicates this. Polemos signifies a campaign of some duration, while mache signifies a single, isolated battle. This distinction is observed by Trench (New Testament Synonyms), Thayer (Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament), and Vincent (Word Studies in the New Testament).
In the popular mind, the Gog/Magog War and Armageddon have more often than not been confused as one rather than two wars, the tendency being to merge the Scriptures which detail the events of the Gog/Magog War with those of Armageddon. This confusion of the popular mind has been aided and abetted by pastors and teachers who are connected to the American New World Order System: THEIR PURPOSE HAS BEEN TO LINK AN AMERICAN "VICTORY" IN THE COMING GOG/MAGOG WAR TO THE COMING OF CHRIST'S KINGDOM ON EARTH, AND CLAIM THAT IT SIGNALS THAT AMERICA IS THE "HAMMER OF GOD" TO THAT END - WHEN IN FACT THE EXACT OPPOSITE IS TRUE.
Now this fact is very important for you to grasp. If you miss it, you will surely be carried away with the false euphoria connected to the coming American (and Israeli) triumph against the forces of Islamic Radicalism in the Middle East; an euphoria that will make the celebrations that swept Germany after the Wehrmacht (i.e., the German army) captured Paris in 1940 pale in comparison - celebrations that swept the German Church up in the giddiness of the moment and linked it forever to the demoniacal purposes of Adolf Hitler. But what the German people (and German Christians) failed to grasp is that there were more battles to come - Kursk, Stalingrad, the Normandy Invasion, etc., and that their initial victories would be buried in a massive, mind-numbing defeat. So also with the people of the United States - AND THAT BY THE DIRECT INTERVENTION OF GOD.
It is, therefore, imperative that you grasp the distinction between the Gog/Magog War and Armageddon, and that you understand that the alliance between Israel and the United States in connection with the Gog/Magog War (i.e., the war that opens the Tribulation Period) is NOT something that is approved of by God, but something that God - in speaking to Israel - calls "your [i.e., Israel's] COVENANT WITH DEATH" and "your AGREEMENT WITH HELL" (Isaiah 28:15) - an alliance that is based on "lies" and "falsehoods:"
"... for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves ..." (Isaiah 28:15)
And you think that God will have mercy on you in that day if you make a similar agreement with the American New World Order System? If so, you are presuming too much on the mercy of God, not realizing that God's mercy is intended to lead one to repentance; but if you fail to repent (turn away from your folly), and - in effect - say that "God will have mercy on me anyway," you should understand that you are "presuming too much" on the kindness of God. [Please see our article, "Individual Responsibility before God;" please also see our article, "Transitioning from Moderation to Radicalism."]
The Bible says that those who presume on the mercy of God in this fashion "despise" His "goodness" and "forbearance" and "longsuffering" (Rom. 2:4), and "after the hardness and impenitence" of their hearts are storing up to themselves -
"... wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God." (Rom. 2:4:5)
Is that what you are doing in these "Last Days?" Are you making "lies your refuge" and are you "hiding yourself behind falsehoods?" Are you "storing up wrath against yourself? - for surely that's what ALL Christians are doing when they - like Israel - make an alliance with the American New World Order System, directly or indirectly, centrally or just peripherally.
"... your COVENANT WITH DEATH shall be disannulled, and your AGREEMENT WITH HELL shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then YE SHALL BE TRODDEN DOWN BY IT." (Isaiah 28:18) [Please see Chapter VI of the Antipas Papers: "The Gog/Magog War and the Treaty with Death and Hell."]
That there exists a clear distinction between the Gog/Magog War and Armageddon there can be no doubt! As J. Dwight Pentecost has pointed out, there are a number of considerations which make it very plain that we are dealing with two great wars rather than one during the Tribulation.
Thus, as Dwight Pentecost has suggested,
"Two diverse movements (wars) must be acknowledged."
Moreover, to suggest, as some NINCOMPOOPS do, that the Scriptures that reference the Gog/Magog War refer to some sort of event that occurred in antiquity is pure nonsense. The truth is, NO prior invasion of the land of Israel is sufficient to be the fulfillment of this prophecy. There have been invasions in the past which have wrought hardship on the land and the people of Israel, but NONE answer to the details given here. The destruction of the Temple in AD 70, for example, was accomplished by the Romans who came from the west. But the invasion described here comes from the direction of TURKEY and Persia to the north, and EGYPT, Ethiopia and Libya from the south.
This fact is attested to by almost all Orthodox Jewish scholars (who themselves consider these prophesies to be as yet unfulfilled). These passages, then, can only refer to some as yet future event in Israel's history - and this is clearly indicated by the phrase, "... in the latter years" (Ezek. 38:8). Dwight Pentecost, Robert Duncan Culver, and David L. Cooper agree with the Orthodox Jews. For example, Cooper writes,
"... it is utterly impossible to locate the fulfillment of this prediction (i.e., the Gog/Magog War) after the Millennial Age. It cannot be placed at the beginning of the Millennium, nor at the end of the Tribulation. It must, therefore, be located (at the beginning) of the Tribulation, because there is no other logical place for it to occur since the three other dates are impossible ... There will (thus) be a time between now and the beginning of the Tribulation when [this war will occur which will initiate the seven years of the Tribulation Period]."
This thesis is substantiated in a somewhat backhanded way by Ezekiel 39 when the prophet reveals that a full SEVEN years will be needed to clear away the wreckage of the Gog/Magog War:
"And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons ... and they shall burn them with fire SEVEN years ..." (Ezek. 39:9)
The seven years referred to here by Ezekiel could be none other than the seven years of the Tribulation Period - since no such seven years will follow Armageddon; after Armageddon, the beasts of the field and the fouls of the air will clear away the wreckage - and that by divine direction and in a short period of time. Then the Millennium will begin - there is no seven year interval here. Thus, the Gog/Magog War will immediately precede the events of the Tribulation period. There is, as Cooper suggests, simply no other place to put it which will conform to the pertinent Scriptures; and it (i.e., the Gog/Magog War) will initiate the great happenings of that era (i.e., the Tribulation Period).
It should be noted in reference to the Gog/Magog War described above that this great conflict has nothing to do with the conflict described in Revelation 20:8; the war that is described there takes place AFTER the Millennium (Rev. 20:7), while the conflict which is described in the passages above and later in Daniel clearly takes place BEFORE the Millennium. "Gog" is obviously a reference to an evil, angelic prince who possesses Satanic dominion over those nations which have arrayed themselves against Israel - much in the same way that the "Prince of Persia" and the "Prince of Grecia" (Greece) [described in Daniel (i.e., Daniel 10:13-20) with whom Michael, the archangel of God, fought] possess. Evidently, Gog will be loosed with the devil one final time after the Millennium (please see Revelation 20:7-8).
The Gog/Magog War, then, will precede the Tribulation and will act as a catalyst for the great events of that period, while Armageddon will bring to a conclusion the events of the Tribulation Period. A FAIR READING OF THE PASSAGES IN SCRIPTURE THAT DEAL WITH THESE GREAT WARS WILL YIELD NO OTHER RESULT.
Now one must understand something about the Gog/Magog War: It's a war of GREED - and while the leaders of today's American Church will try to tell you differently as the storm clouds gather - i.e., that it's a war that aims to "bring democracy to the peoples of the Middle East;" a war that aims to "break the power of Islam so that Christianity can once again bloom in its ancient heartland" - it's, nonetheless, purely and simply, a war about GREED, as are ALL wars. To say otherwise is to fly in the face of the clear teachings of the New Testament. Jesus said:
"Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
"But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
"And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also.
"And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
"Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
"Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
"But I say unto you, LOVE YOUR ENEMIES, BLESS THEM THAT CURSE YOU, DO GOOD TO THEM THAT HATE YOU, AND PRAY FOR THEM WHICH DESPITEFULLY USE YOU, AND PERSECUTE YOU;
"That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
"For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?" (Matt. 5:38-46)
There is no such a thing as a "Just War" in this world and in this life; that the church is authorized to participate in a such a war is a concoction of the Medieval Church which used that concept to justify its murderous participation in the crusades and its bloody conquest and subjugation of the "New World." The Bible instructs us that wars result from COVETOUSNESS:
"From whence come wars ... ? come they not hence, even of your lusts ... ? (James 4:1)
What the Bible is saying here is that, ultimately, wars are not about ideology or God, or any other such things. These are just the masks behind which those who indulge themselves in the rapacity of war hide themselves. In the end, it's all about GREED and AVARICE:
"Ye lust, and have not: [so] ye kill, and desire to have [more], and cannot obtain:[so] ye fight and war [all the more] ..." (James 4:2)
In the case of the Gog/Magog War - the war that we are examining now - its about the oil elites' effort to hold on to their ill-gotten gain in the Middle East: the fabulous oil riches of that area. It's about preventing the people of the Middle East - the rightful owners of this wealth - from taking back those riches and expelling America from the region.
Unfortunately for the people of the Middle East, mixed up in their effort to regain control of their fabulous wealth is a HATRED of Israel, whom the people of the Middle East and Central Asia see as America's "CAT'S PAW" in the region. And it's not without reason that they think so - because that's exactly what Israel has become: AMERICA'S "TOADY." In doing so, Israel - a people who are called by God's great Name - have brought shame upon themselves and upon Him by whom they are called. [For an understanding of the difference between Israel and the Church (which is essential to any understanding of the Prophetic Scriptures, we urge you to read Chapter III of the Antipas Papers, "The Distinction between Israel and the Church;" please also see our article, "Israel and the End of the Age."]
There can be, of course, no question as to the gathering storm in the Middle East; it's plain enough for anyone to see who wants to see (Mark 8:18); one doesn't even need the Bible to see what's going on: Specifically, that the forces of Islamic Radicalism are gathering themselves together to -
Clearly, what the leaders of Islamic Radicalism are seeking to do is reestablish a single Islamic Caliphate over the entire area - one that stretches from Morocco in the west (including possibly even the Iberian Peninsula) to Pakistan in the east (and possibly farther east to Malaysia and the Philippines). [Please see our article on the origins of Radical Islam, "Radical Islam;" please also see our articles, "The Coming War in the Middle East" and "Israel and the Renewed Struggle for the Holy Land."]B. HATE DRAWS GOG DOWN ON ISRAEL
"Thus saith the Lord GOD; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall things come into thy mind [i.e., Gog's mind], and THOU SHALL THINK AN EVIL THOUGHT:
"And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of UNWALLED VILLAGES [i.e., Israel]; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates,
"To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and UPON THE PEOPLE THAT ARE GATHERED OUT OF THE NATIONS [again, Israel], which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land." (Ezekiel 38:10-12)
"Thou shall think an evil thought?" Ezek. 38:10) - clearly, Gog's primary purpose here is to destroy Israel, "The people that are gathered out of the nations." (Ezek. 38:12) If there is some spoil to be had in the process, that's all well and good - but what really is driving Gog is HATE: HATE FOR ISRAEL!C. GREED DRAWS IN THE
Then the Bible says something very interesting that reveals Gog's secondary purpose (#2 above) - the elimination of America's presence in the Middle East (which will bring the wrath of America down on Gog). IT ALSO REVEALS WHOSE OX IS REALLY BEING GOADED BY THE FORCES OF ISLAMIC RADICALISM AND WHO REALLY IS BEHIND WHAT'S GOING ON IN THE MIDDLE EAST - i.e., THE CEOs OF AMERICA'S MULTINATIONAL OIL COMPANIES, companies who are more than willing to sacrifice America's sons and daughters for the sake of their "bottom lines." [Please see our article, "The Coming War in Iraq; What It's Really All About."]
And how exactly do we know that this is so? The Bible leaves us a plethora of clues which anyone who has "eyes to see" and "ears to hear" (Mark 8:18) can pick up on. We can begin by examining Ezekiel 38:13 which follows hard on the heels of the verses we have just examined (Ezekiel 38:10-12):
"Sheba and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee (i.e., Gog), ART THOU COME TO TAKE A SPOIL? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil?" (Ezek. 38:13)
The question that fairly begs to be asked in connection with this verse is Who exactly are "Sheba" and "Dedan," and the "Merchants of Tarshish" who raise a protest against what Gog is doing? Evidently, they're not particularly interested in Israel per se; what they're interested in is the SPOIL that will accrue to Gog if his attack proves successful.
Sheba, Dedan, and the "Merchants of Tarshish" are all mentioned in Ezekiel chapter twenty-seven as merchants of great wealth who made the ancient kingdom of Tyre "roll and go." Speaking to the king of Tyre, the prophet says:
"TARSHISH WAS THY MERCHANT by reason of the multitude of all kind of riches; with silver, iron, tin, and lead, they traded in thy fairs.
"DEDAN WAS THY MERCHANT in precious clothes for chariots.
"THE MERCHANTS OF SHEBA ... they were thy merchants: they occupied in thy fairs with chief of all spices, and with all precious stones, and gold.
"The ships of Tarshish did sing of thee in thy market: and thou wast replenished, and made very glorious in the midst of the seas. (Ezekiel 27:12, 20, 22, 25)
IN OTHER WORDS, THESE MEN WERE, SO TO SPEAK, THE CEOs OF THE GREAT "MERCHANT HOUSES" OF THEIR TIME; men of "high finance" - the "Robber Barons" who made the Kingdom of Tyre (again,, the kingdom referenced in Ezekiel twenty-seven) the wealthiest nation of its day. THE "KINGDOM OF TYRE" AND THE "MERCHANTS OF TARSHISH" ARE INEXTRICABLY LINKED TOGETHER IN HOLY WRIT.
That, of course, brings us to the matter of Tyre's empyreal ("spiritual") identity; what Tyre was really all about in the ancient world. Concerning Tyre, the great Bible expositor, J.N. Darby writes :
"TYRE ... REPRESENTS THE WORLD AND ITS RICHES, in contrast with Israel as the people of God; and rejoices [over the destruction of Israel] not like the other nations of the world from personal hatred, but because, having opposite interests, the destruction of that which restrained its career gave free course to its natural selfishness."
What Darby is saying here is that unlike most other peoples of the ancient world who hated Israel with an open and very PERSONAL hatred, Tyre had a hidden distaste for Israel; but not out of any PERSONAL animosity, but simply because Israel hindered Tyre from its quest for worldly wealth. [Please see our article, "The Real Enemy of Israel; It's Not What You Think;" please also see our article, "The Republican Party and the Jews."]
It's interesting to note in this connection that for a time Israel had proved itself useful to Tyre's own selfish ends; but eventually Tyre came to view Israel as an impediment to its continued aggrandizement. The parallel to what's happening today with Israel in connection to the United States and what happened centuries ago between Israel and Tyre should be plain enough for anyone to see. AND THAT'S PRECISELY WHY THIS CONNECTION IS MADE IN THE PROPHETIC SCRIPTURES.
Tyre was driven by GREED, and when it eventually turned on Israel, there was nothing particularly ideological or theological in its "breach of faith" insofar as Israel was concerned. Israel had become an obstacle to the riches that Tyre wanted to take unfettered possession of. For that reason Israel had to be expunged, much as a robber would brush aside a yelping puppy that stood in his way of burgling a house; OR better yet, much as a criminal would turn on his former comrades when it came to dividing up the spoil of their mutual plunder - which is precisely what America will do to Israel shortly after the Gog/Magog War.
In the Scripture, TYRE IS TO AMERICA AS THE "MERCHANTS OF TARSHISH" ARE TO THE CEOs OF AMERICA'S GIANT MULTINATIONAL CORPORATIONS. BOTH VIEW ISRAEL AS NOTHING MORE THAN A USEFUL TOOL WHICH CAN BE THROWN AWAY AFTER ITS USEFULNESS HAS PASSED. Hence God's warning to Israel concerning its alliance with America:
D. THE KING OF TYRE
"... your COVENANT WITH DEATH shall be disannulled, and your AGREEMENT WITH HELL shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then YE SHALL BE TRODDEN DOWN BY IT." (Isaiah 28:18)
And now - in case anyone has missed the point - the Bible very clearly draws the parallel forward to today and links the King of Tyre to the AntiChrist, and it does so in a most marvelous way. The prophet begins by first addressing the kingdom of Tyre as a whole:
"The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
"Now, thou son of man, take up a lamentation for Tyrus;
"And say unto Tyrus, O thou that art situate in the ... [midst] of the sea, which art a merchant of the people for many isles, Thus saith the Lord GOD; O Tyrus, thou hast said, I AM OF PERFECT BEAUTY.
"Thy borders are in the midst of the seas, THY BUILDERS HAVE PERFECTED THY BEAUTY. (Ezekiel 27:1-4)
This is a nation, then, that glories in its beauty and what it sees as its perfection. It dwells in the midst of the seas. It is bounded by the seas. What nation could that possibly be? Come on now - be honest. [Please see our articles, "The American Empire: In Search of Babylon; What Do the scriptures Say?" and "The Image of the Beast."]
And then the prophet turns his attention to the king of Tyre:
"The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
"Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I AM A GOD, I SIT IN THE SEAT OF GOD, IN THE MIDST OF THE SEAS; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God:
"Behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee:
"With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures:
"By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches, and THINE HEART IS LIFTED UP BECAUSE OF THY RICHES:
"... thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God ..." (Ezekiel 28:1-6)
Up to this point, it could be said that the Bible is describing a man - a very impressive and remarkable (though extremely egocentric) man - but still a man.
Then, however, the Bible goes beyond what could be the description of a mere mortal - way beyond:
"Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; THOU SEALEST UP THE SUM, FULL OF WISDOM, AND PERFECT IN BEAUTY.
"THOU HAST BEEN IN THE EDEN OF GOD; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created.
"THOU ART THE ANOINTED CHERUB THAT COVERETH; and I have set thee so: THOU WAST UPON THE HOLY MOUNTAIN OF GOD; THOU HAST WALKED UP AND DOWN IN THE MIDST OF THE STONES OF FIRE.
These are words that could not possibly be said of a mere man:
"Here, as in Isa. 14:12, THE LANGUAGE GOES BEYOND THE KING OF TYRE TO SATAN, the inspirer and unseen ruler of all such pomp and pride as that of Tyre. Instances of thus indirectly addressing Satan are: Gen. 3:14, 15; Matt. 16:23. The unfallen state of Satan is here described ... The vision is not of Satan in his own person, but of Satan fulfilling himself in and through an earthly king who arrogates to himself divine honours, so that THE PRINCE OF TYRUS FORESHADOWS THE BEAST (i.e., the AntiChrist - Dan. 7:8; Rev. 19:20)." [Please see Chapter XIII of the Antipas Papers, "AntiChrist, King of Babylon;" Please also see "George Bush, the Promise Keepers, and the Principles of Messianic Leadership."]
"In chapter xxviii , it is the prince and the king of Tyre that are judged for their pride. Verses 1-10 set Tyre before us the prince of this world's glory as a man, exalting himself and seeking to present himself as a god, having acquired riches and glory by his wisdom. Verses 11-19, while continuing to speak of Tyre, go ... much farther, and disclose, though darkly, the ... ways of Satan, become through our sin the prince and god of this world. The prince of Tyre represents Tyre and the spirit of Tyre. The verses which follow (11-19) are much more personal. I do not doubt that, historically, Tyre itself is referred to; verses 16-19 prove that. But ... the mind of the Spirit goes much farther [toward Satan]."
In this connection, it should be noted that Hiram, the king of Tyre, promoted himself as the friend of Israel. Indeed, Hiram had allied himself with Solomon and had even helped Solomon build the Temple. Darby writes: "The special relation of Tyre with Israel added something to the position of the merchant city, and gave room also for the use made here of the history of its king as a type or figure of the prince of this world" - who will, in the 'end of days' attempt to pass himself off - like Hiram before him - as Israel's friend."
The Bible continues concerning the king of Tyre:
"BY THE MULTITUDE OF THY MERCHANDISE THEY (i.e., SHEBA, DEDAN, AND THE "MERCHANTS OF TARSHISH") HAVE FILLED THE MIDST OF THEE WITH VIOLENCE, AND THOU HAST SINNED: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
"THOU HAST DEFILED THY SANCTUARIES BY THE MULTITUDE OF THINE INIQUITIES, BY THE INIQUITY OF THY TRAFFICK; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.
"All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more. (Ezekiel 28:12-19) [Please see our article, "The Elite, Money and the End of Days;" please also see our articles, "Greed, Avarice and the Coming Dictatorship" and "The Measure of a Man's Worth."]
Tyre and the prince of Tyre have defiled themselves, and one should take careful note of the manner in which they have done so:
What's the Bible saying here? - it's saying that Tyre and the Prince of Tyre have been corrupted by the GREED and COVETOUSNESS of their business leaders. When the Bible speaks here of "traffick," it's speaking of "economic activity." Believe me when I tell you that the Bible wasn't blowing smoke when it said:
"They that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, WHICH DROWN MEN IN DESTRUCTION AND PERDITION.
"FOR THE LOVE OF MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL ..." (I Tim. 6:9-10a) [Again, not some evil, but ALL evil.]
Moreover, the Bible sets up a kind of formula here, a social equation, as it were: The search for wealth - i.e., "the ceaseless quest for money to make still more money," as Michael Parenti puts it - leads INVARIABLY to VIOLENCE. That's what the Bible is saying when it says, "They [i.e., Sheba, Dedan, and the "Merchants of Tarshish] have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned."E. PARALLEL WORLDS
Come on now! - is it that hard to see the parallel between Tyre and the "Merchants of Tarshish (on the one hand) and America and her business elites (on the other hand)? The fact is, in today's world, the American business elites stand in exactly the same place to America as the "Merchants of Tarshish" stood in relation to the kingdom of Tyre - AND IT IS, THEREFORE, NOT WITHOUT PURPOSE THAT THE BIBLE DRAWS THIS PARALLEL FORWARD TO TODAY'S WORLD IN EZEKIEL CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN: Those who have "eyes to see" and "ears to hear" (Mark 8:18) will easily make the connection.
And make no mistake about the centrality of the American business elites to the way America (and, ipso facto, the world) is run today. The late Professor C. Wright Mills of Columbia University has written:
"... in this particular epoch a conjunction of historical circumstances has led to the rise of an elite of power ... the men of the circles composing this elite, severally and collectively, now make such key decisions as are made; and that, given the enlargement and the centralization of the means of power now available, the decisions that they make and fail to make carry more consequences for more people than has ever been the case in the world history of mankind." [Please see our article, "Greed, Avarice and the Coming Dictatorship."]
"The pursuit of the moneyed-life is ... (the elite's) commanding value, in relation to which the influence of other values has declined, so ... (THAT THEY HAVE) EASILY BECOME MORALLY RUTHLESS IN ITS PURSUIT..."
"(They have) narrowed the meaning of 'success' to big money and in these terms condemn (financial) failure as the chief vice, raising money to the plane of absolute value."
"Whenever the standards of the moneyed-life prevail, the man with money, NO MATTER HOW HE GOT IT, will eventually be respected. (In America), it is not only that men want money; it is that their very standards are pecuniary. In a society (i.e., the American society) in which the money-maker has ... no serious rival for repute and honor, the word 'practical' comes to mean 'useful for private gain' and 'common sense', 'the sense to get ahead financially'."
Just as the moneyed elites of Tyre filled Tyre and Tyre's tribute states with bloodshed and violence, so also America's moneyed elites have filled America and her "client-states" with violence and bloodshed, except it's not called that when America's business elites "traffic" in it. When they rob the poor, dispossess them of their land and houses, pollute the environment, ship their jobs overseas to "slave-labor factories," instead of calling it what it is - i.e., "criminality" - they call what they are doing "sound business practices." [Please see our article, "The American Empire and the New Global Elite;" please also see "The American Empire and the U.S. System of Client-States."]
And its just not that they openly practice such things; they then buy up legislators, take control of the judiciary, co-opt the administrative organs of the government, and buy up the electoral process in order to insure that they are immune from the consequences of their felonious acts. Commenting on the kind of "democracy" they have created for themselves in America, Michael Parenti writes that as things stand now, the American people -
"... might better think of [their system of government] ... as a dual political system. First, there is the symbolic political system centered around electoral and representative activities including party conflicts, voter turnout, political personalities, public pronouncements, official role-playing and certain ambiguous presentations of some of the public issues which bestir presidents, governors, mayors and their respective legislatures. Then there is the substantive political system, involving multi-billion dollar contracts, tax write-offs, protections, rebates, grants, loss compensations, subsidies, leases, giveaways and the whole vast process of budgeting, legislating, advising, regulating, protecting and servicing major producer interests - now bending or ignoring the law on behalf of the powerful, now applying it with full punitive vigor against heretics and 'troublemakers'. The symbolic system is highly visible, taught in schools, discussed by academicians, gossiped about by newsmen. The substantive system is seldom heard of or accounted for."
The fact is, THE RICH IN AMERICA ARE NOTHING MORE THAN CRIMINALS IN ARMANI SUITS, But unlike the Mafioso (who have, in relative terms, only a few "hit men" at their disposal to enforce their will), the CEOs of General Electric, Ford Motor Company, Haliburton, Exxon-Mobil, etc. have the entire U.S. military at their disposal to enforce their will. AND SO WE NOW UNDERSTAND THE CRYPTIC REFERENCE TO "SHEBA, DEDAN AND THE MERCHANTS OF TARSHISH" IN EZEK. 38:13:
"Sheba and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee (i.e., Gog), ART THOU COME TO TAKE A SPOIL? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil?" (Ezek. 38:13)
It is a protest that will act as a catalyst to America's presence in the Middle East and - again - it reveals whose ox is really being goaded by the forces of Islamic Radicalism (i.e., the CEOs of America's multinational oil companies), and who really is behind what's going on in the Middle East (i.e., these very same rapacious oil companies who - again - are more than willing to sacrifice America's sons and daughters for the sake of their "bottom lines").F. THE PROPHECIES OF EZEKIEL AND DANIEL
We have now gleaned about as much as we can concerning the Gog/Magog War from the prophet Ezekiel. This much has been made clear:
But, having said this, little else can be gleaned from Ezekiel concerning the Gog/Magog War except that Gog will be almost totally annihilated. But how will the war unfold? Are there other "players?" How exactly does the AntiChrist become involved? These and other questions are left unanswered by Ezekiel. Instead, Ezekiel passes over these questions, bypassing the rest of the Tribulation Period, and moves directly into a picture of a restored Israel during the Millennium.
We must take up the rest of the Gog/Magog story (where Ezekiel left off) in Daniel chapter eleven. [Please see Daniel and the Latter Days (Moody Press) by Robert Duncan Culver for an excellent treatment of these and other passages.]
Daniel 11:36-39 begins the prophecy with a description of the Antichrist and compares him with Antiochus Epiphanes [the Greek (by ethnicity) not Syrian ruler of the ancient Selussian Empire] who desecrated the Temple in Jerusalem in the Second Century B.C. (Daniel 11:21-35). Among other things, he (Antichrist) is described as a man who shall corrupt with flatteries (Daniel 11:32), and a man infatuated with military power and glory. Daniel goes on to say:
"And at the end time [same as "in the latter years" - cf. Daniel 11:40 and Ezekiel 38:8] the king of the South [the leader of the southern confederation, i.e., EGYPT, Libya, etc.] will collide with him [i.e., the Antichrist - please see Daniel and the Latter Days by Robert Culver], and the king of the North [Gog] will storm against him [again, the Antichrist] with chariots, with horsemen, and with many ships; and he [Antichrist] will enter countries, overflow them, and pass through.
"He [i.e., the Antichrist] will also enter the Beautiful Land [i.e., Israel], and many countries will fall; but these will be rescued out of his hand: Edom, Moab and the foremost of the sons of Ammon [i.e., that portion of land east of the river Jordan which sweeps in a large arc (with the Dead Sea as the fulcrum) from about 30 miles northeast of the Dead Sea southward to about 50 miles due south, southeast of the same sea - a barren and desolate wilderness devoid of any significant vegetation. Mt. Nebo is located in this area where it is reputed that Jeremiah hid the "Arc of the Covenant" in order to prevent its capture by the Babylonians - and there are some scholars today (mainly Orthodox Jews) who believe that it is still there (Numbers 35)].
"Then he [i.e., Antichrist] will stretch out his hand against other countries, and the land of EGYPT will not escape.
"HE [i.e., Antichrist] WILL GAIN CONTROL OVER THE HIDDEN TREASURES [ i.e., THE OIL OF THE MDDLE EAST] AND OVER ALL THE PRECIOUS THINGS ...
"But rumors from the East and from the North will disturb him [i.e., Antichrist], and he [Antichrist] will go forth with great wrath to destroy and annihilate many.
"And he [Antichrist] will pitch the tents of his royal pavilion between the seas and the beautiful Holy Mountain ..." (Daniel 11:40-45a)
As described here, the Gog/Magog War will be initiated by a "push" from the king of the south (i.e., the leader of the southern confederation, probably the leader of EGYPT) against the Antichrist, whose forces are at least partially located in the "glorious land" [Israel] - probably as a result of a defense pact between Israel and Babylon, the nation which he leads. Shortly thereafter, the king of the north [Gog] - leading the combined forces of TURKEY, Iran, etc - will launch his attack, and between them, the king of the north and the king of the south will attempt to trap the combined forces of Israel and Babylon in a giant pincer movement. The attack of the king of the north [Gog] has been referred to in Ezekiel 38 and 39. Now new detail is given. Ezekiel 38 and 39 had mentioned the fact that Ethiopia and Libya would join Gog in this attack; now a third nation is added - EGYPT (Daniel 11:42).
As a result of the information contained in the above verses and those in Ezekiel, we have now -
This, at last, brings us to the matter of Turkey and Egypt; specifically their decline into the fires of Islamic Radicalism. The submergence of both countries in these fires will take place in an atmosphere of increasing turmoil and confusion in the Middle East as the forces of Islamic Radicalism (on the one hand) and America and her client-state, Israel (on the other hand) maneuver for advantage in the upcoming struggle for control of the vast oil riches of the area. In this struggle, both sides will be radicalized because - in the end - only the radicalized elements of each camp are prepared to endure the horrors of the clash that lie ahead; only they possess the esprit de corps (as it were) and the kind of intellectual (really, religious) rigor necessary for such a contest.
As the struggle continues, both sides will be progressively driven back to the ancient springs from which their cultures first drew breath; in the case of America, Christianity; and in the case of the Muslim people of the Middle East, Islam. There is no room on this battlefield for the "faint of heart," which in this case means the religious "moderates" on both sides. All this bodes ill for the "secular" governments of Turkey and Egypt. Indeed, what's happening in both countries is that their "moderate" underpinnings are rotting away under the impress of Islamic Radicalism. In Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood - a radical Islamic group that has been banned for years - is making an astounding comeback, capturing over 37 percent of the Egyptian vote in recent elections, which by all accounts were rigged in favor of the current government.
The fact is, it's not too much to say that without the police-state apparatus of the Egyptian state, the present secular government of Hosni Mubarik would have fallen a long time ago to the forces of Islamic Fundamentalism. Indeed, the pathology of rot that has taken hold on the Mubarik government resembles nothing so much as the rot that took hold on the Shah's government in Iran shortly before its fall in 1978.
In Turkey, the same rot is extant as in Egypt. All that's needed to push the "moderates" out in Turkey is the rejection of their bid for E.U. membership - a bid that looks increasingly shaky. For example, Valery Giscard d'Estaing of France recently asserted in an interview with Le Monde that Turkey has no business in the E.U. It's not a "Western" country at all. He continued:
"Turkey's capital is not in Europe, and 95 percent of its population is outside Europe. It has a different culture, a different approach, and a different way of life ... E.U. membership for Turkey would mean the end of Europe."
And Giscard d'Estaing is not alone in his sentiments. His comments have been echoed by West Germany's former chancellor, Helmut Schmidt, who publicly voiced fears that the admission of Turkey -
"... would open the door for similarly plausible full membership of other MUSLIM nations in Africa and the Middle East. That could result in the political union degenerating into nothing more than a free trade community [without a common culture]."
While the secular elites in Europe continue to press for Turkey's membership in the E.U., most of the differing populations of the E.U. member states are opposed to Turkey's membership for cultural and, yes, even religious reasons. The current population of Turkey is about 70 million; by contrast, Germany is the largest E.U. state with about 83 million residents, but it is shrinking by about 82,000 a year while Turkey's population is exploding. That means that in a few years, Turkey would be the largest state - both in terms of geography and sheer numbers - in the E.U. What that could mean is that Europe could be flooded with Muslim immigrants who would be accorded unrestricted immigration rights under the E.U. Charter. That's something that sends shivers down the spines of most Europeans.
Should Turkey's bid for membership in the E.U. continue to stall, however, Turkey could irrevocably turn away from "moderation" and embrace Islamic Radicalism. Indeed, the current government of Turkey is made up in part from previously banned Islamic parties. The leader of this coalition, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has warned that if things continue as they are, the Turks will look at the E.U. as "nothing more than a Christian Club" which is closed to Islamic participation. AND THE FACT IS, THERE IS ALREADY A GROWING SENTIMENT IN TURKEY AGAINST BECOMING A "PARIAH" MEMBER OF THE E.U. WHEN IT COULD INSTEAD BECOME THE LEADING MEMBER IN A COALITION OF ISLAMIC STATES THAT WOULD STRETCH FROM MOROCCO TO THE PHILIPPINES
The question , now, that fairly begs to be asked is, How close are we to the collapse of the present secular governments of Turkey and Egypt? The short answer is, very close! Indeed, as we just indicated, both Turkey and Egypt stand in just about the same situation as the government of Iran did just prior to the fall of the Shah.
When the collapse of the Shah finally came in 1978 - which led to the Middle East's first Islamic government - it looked at the time to have come out of nowhere. But the social rot that led to the collapse of the Shah's government had been eating away at Iran's foundations for years. While the façade remained, the substance was gone; as a result, when the collapse came, it came suddenly. THIS IS PRECISELY WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN VERY SOON NOW IN BOTH EGYPT AND TURKEY - AND NOTHING WILL BE ABLE TO STAVE OFF THIS COLLAPSE.
Moreover, this kind of rot is extant in almost all the secular governments of the Middle East and North Africa - from Morocco and Algeria in the west, through Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Yemen, Lebanon, and Syria in the center - and even eastward through Pakistan, the states of Central Asia, and on into Malaysia. The fact is, all of these secular governments are rotten to their very foundations, AND THIS ROT HAS A LOT TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT THEY ARE ALL AMERICAN CLIENT-STATES with very little popular support at the grass-roots level.
Ultimately, the secular governments of each of these states owe their existence to the support of the U.S. military; and all of them are in league with the Americans in the rape of their respective countries by America's huge "multi-national" corporations - corporations such as Exxon-Mobil, Haliburton, Shell (which, despite its British and Dutch façade, is really an American-owned corporation), Conoco-Phillips, Dow, Union Carbide, etc.
But Egypt and Turkey are crucial in the fact that they - together with Iran - possess among themselves more than 80 percent of the population of the Middle East. That makes what happens to them crucial to what happens to the Middle East as a whole.G. RESTATING THE FACTS ON THE GROUND
When Egypt and Turkey go, all of the Middle East will go with them! - AND, AGAIN, IT'S JUST A MATTER OF TIME NOW. When that finally happens, ALL THE "PLAYERS" THAT ARE DIRECTLY MENTIONED IN THE PROPHETIC SCRIPTURES WILL HAVE GATHERED THEMSELVES TO WAR:
While nothing is DIRECTLY said about such countries as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, the nations of Central Asia, etc., great peril nonetheless attaches itself to the populations of these nations. And why is that? - because (1) their proximity to the "killing fields" of the Gog/Magog War places them in great jeopardy, and (2) each of them also possesses populations that are dangerously near to delivering themselves over to the power of Islamic Radicalism. That would then make them DIRECT targets of Babylon's (i.e., America's) fury as well. Pakistan stands in particular peril because it possesses nuclear weapons which would make it a special target should it succumb to Islamic Radicalism.
There is only one other event before us that we have yet to examine in connection with the Gog/Magog War and the beginning of the Tribulation: The signing of a FORMAL defense pact between the United States and Israel. The Scripture calls this agreement between Israel and Prophetic Babylon as "YOUR [i.e., ISRAEL'S] COVENANT WITH DEATH" and "YOUR AGREEMENT WITH HELL:"
"Wherefore, hear the word of the Lord, ye ... men that rule this people which is in Jerusalem.
"Because ye have said, We have made a COVENANT WITH DEATH, AND WITH HELL (Prophetic Babylon) are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us ...
"(But) ... your COVENANT WITH DEATH shall be disannulled, and your AGREEMENT WITH HELL shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it." (Isaiah 28:14-15, 18)
Why does the Bible use such strong language with regard to this covenant? - because it is an abomination to God for His people to trust in anything but the hand of God! It is a fearful thing for the people of God [be that people Israel or the church] to trust in gentile world power. God calls it "harlotry!" Concerning this pact, J. Dwight Pentecost writes:
"According to Daniel 9:26-27 ... [Babylon (i.e., the United States)] will make a covenant with Israel for a seven year period. This covenant evidently ... guarantees Israel's integrity [i.e., is a defense pact] ... [and] also is a Satanic imitation of the fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant which ... [guaranteed] Israel title deed to the land. This action is pictured by John [in the Apocalypse] (Rev. 16:2) as a rider going forth to conquer [as the first horseman in the Apocalypse] ... This condition exists for three and one-half years, after which the covenant is broken by the ... [Antichrist]."
Sir Robert Anderson elaborates on the prophetic circumstances surrounding this treaty and its connection to the Tribulation Period:
"... the Seventieth Week [i.e., the seven year period of the Tribulation Period] will be a definite period of time, of which the beginning, the middle, and the end are definitely marked [by certain well defined events]. [Just as the beginning of the first sixty-nine weeks were signified] ... not by the return of the Jews from Babylon, nor yet by the rebuilding of their Temple, but by the SIGNING OF THE PERSIAN DECREE [TREATY] which restored ... [them], so also the beginning of the Seventieth Week will date not from their restoration to Judea [May 14, 1948], nor yet from the future rebuilding of their shrine, but from the SIGNING OF THE [DEFENSE] TREATY BY THE COMING PRINCE [ANTICHRIST]." [Again, we urge you to read Chapter V, "Understanding the Book of Revelation."]
It is important to note here that Anderson pins the actual commencement of the Tribulation Period to the signing of this defense pact. IT SHOULD BE FURTHER NOTED THAT HE WHO SIGNS THIS TREATY ON BEHALF OF BABYLON (i.e., THE UNITED STATES) IS THE ANTICHRIST. THAT WILL BE FIRST "SURE SIGN" AS TO HIS IDENTITY. [Please see Chapter XIII of the Antipas Papers, "AntiChrist: King of Babylon."]
According to the Bible, the circumstances surrounding the signing of the coming U.S./Israeli defense pact are not exactly what one might at first suppose - especially in light of the extensive turmoil that is extant now in the Middle East. The picture of Israel given in the Scripture is NOT a picture that one would expect in the days and months leading up to the greatest war in history. Specifically, the Bible says:
"And thou [i.e., Gog) shalt say, I will go up to the land of UNWALLED VILLAGES [i.e., Israel]; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates ..." (Ezekiel 38:11)
This is a picture that reveals the Israeli people "... at rest ... dwelling safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates ..." (Ezekiel 38:11)
But wouldn't this contradict the realities that now exist on the ground in the Middle East? No! - not at all if one once grasps the fact that U.S. foreign policy is still operating in a paradigm that is a decade and a half behind the facts on the ground. The truth is, the U.S. foreign policy establishment (as opposed to the radical neo-cons that surround George Bush and his Christian Right allies who are desperately seeking a "final conflict" with Islam), still believes it's possible to operate in the Middle East behind the "moderate," secular facades of their client-states in the region: Jordan, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Yemen, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey - even countries farther afield such as Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Pakistan, etc. They UTTERLY fail to grasp just how far radical fundamentalism has taken hold among the populations of the Middle East - AND THAT HAS BEEN MADE ABUNDANTLY CLEAR IN THE DEBACLE IN IRAQ and the emergence of "suicide bombers" in the name of "Allah."
Nonetheless, the U.S. pursues this "failed policy" relentlessly, and this is precisely what it is doing when it inserts itself in the turmoil between Israel (on the one hand) and the Palestinians (on the other hand) - thinking that if it can broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians it can quench the flames of Islamic Radicalism. But the fires of Islamic Radicalism long ago burned through that fuel. Nothing can stop it now! - it will burn until it consumes itself finally in its own Gotterdamerung: the GOG/MAGOG WAR.
Still, the U.S. plods on - hoping to save its Middle Eastern client-states by concluding a peace agreement between the Palestinians and the state of Israel. To that end, the U.S. is planning to lean very, very HEAVILY on its "Toad," Israel: it will demand that Israel tear down its SECURITY WALL, and retreat back to the "green-line" (its 1967 borders); in return, the U.S. will guarantee Israel's security in a defense pact. All of this lends INCREDIBLE meaning to the words of Gog in Ezekiel 38:11:
"I will go up to the land of UNWALLED VILLAGES [i.e., Israel]; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates ..." (Ezekiel 38:11) [Please see our article, "The Wall: The Israeli/Palestinian Accords and Israel's Agreement with Death and Hell."]
We have spoken of the radicalization of the Islamic nations of the Middle East and Central Asia, but the United States is also going through a similar process of radicalization: A CHRISTIAN radicalization. Those who get caught up in it will inevitably find themselves allied with the Antichrist and the power of hell!
That radicalization process is already far advanced and is apparent to anyone who has "eyes to see" and "ears to hear" (Mark 8:18). The fact is, CHRISTIANITY IN THE UNITED STATES IS IN A RACE BACK TO THE DARK AGES, THE DAYS OF POPE GREGORY VII AND THE CRUSADES, and this is made apparent not in the secret memoranda of the leaders of today's American Church, but in their public pronouncements. Consider, for example, the words of C. Peter Wagner, a professor at Fuller Theological Seminary and the father of the "Church Growth Movement" which has taken hold everywhere in American Christendom today; Wagner, who considers President George Bush "GOD'S MAN ON EARTH," says:
"In God's providence, things have now changed in Washington. The election of 2000 (which brought George Bush to power) was a vital spiritual victory for our nation ... Today we have leaders who desire a DIVINE CONNECTION BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH."
Wagner elaborates on what he calls this "divine connection between heaven and earth:"
"We must keep in mind that there are two important and interconnecting worlds, the visible world of the natural world and the invisible world of the spiritual world. God has established governments to set policies and execute strategies in the visible world. He has established the church to do likewise in the invisible world."
The thoughts expressed here by Wagner are truly amazing - and are portentous of fearful things to come: of blood and gore and mangled bodies; of ruin and heartache; of orphans and widows; of tears and great sadness! Wagner is pulling the West back to the Dark Ages and the Medieval Church - a world filled with witches and demons and "things that go bump in the night;" a world where the church and the state - i.e., those twin powers of Regnum and Sacerdotium that governed the lives of Medieval Man - were co-equals in the affairs of mankind. This doctrine was known to the Medieval Church as the "Doctrine of the Two Swords" (i.e., the "temporal sword" and the "spiritual sword"): To the Caesars of the state must be given some things, to the church of God must be given others. Si Roma locuta sit, cause finita sit. [Please see our articles, "Apostasy: Christianity in the Service of a Religio-Political-Corporate Terrorist State" and "Political Christianity."]
Hildebrand (i.e., Gregory VII, pope from 1073 - 1085) wrote:
"... the spiritual (i.e., churchly) and temporal (i.e., civil) powers are entrusted to two different orders, each drawing its authority from God, each supreme in its own sphere, and independent, within its own sphere, of the other ... the king is subject to the bishop in spiritual matters, the bishop is to the king in temporal matters." [Please see our article, "Regnum and Sacerdotium."]
This is precisely what Wagner and others of his ilk believe.
Wagner believes that for there to be victory in the "visible world" (i.e., victory for the "American New World Order System" which he fervently believes is God's "Redeemer Nation" ordained by Him to conquer the world for "Christ and the church - please see our article, "Inside the American New World Order System") there must be victory in the "invisible world" (i.e., the church). That both spheres (worlds) must coordinate their respective efforts in order to bring God's Kingdom to earth. Wagner writes,
"It is our responsibility, as church leaders, to use the authority that God has delegated to us and to conquer the invisible forces of darkness ... THIS IS WHAT OPENS THE WAY FOR OUR GOVERNMENT LEADERS (i.e., Bush et. al.) TO MAKE GODLY DECISIONS IN THE NATURAL REALM."
"We have enemies in both the visible world and the invisible world, and, ultimately, our enemies in the invisible world, under Satan as their Commander-in-Chief, influence our natural enemies such as the hijackers who commandeered the commercial jets which inflicted unthinkable destruction on our nation."
And make no mistake about it, Wagner is plainly making a connection between Islam and the events of 9-11. Wagner is plainly setting up an equation here, as it were: Islam = Satan; and Christianity = God.
Wagner goes on:
"... If our government leaders ... are to implement God's purpose here on earth, the church must be equally ready to move into a wartime stance and go on the offensive ... It is time to go to battle in the invisible world ..."
Wagner says that it is the duty of church leaders everywhere to prepare Christians for battle in the "invisible realm" in support of what Bush is trying to accomplish in the "visible realm;" to that end, church leaders must thwart and defeat any "CLINTONESQUE (Wagner's word), PACIFISTIC, ANTI-WAR mood" from taking hold of the church; the unity of the church is paramount if pacifism is to be defeated, and anti-war sentiment successfully driven from the church. Accordingly, the saints must be brought UNDER THE DISCIPLINE OF THEIR PASTORS and elders, who in turn must SUBMIT themselves to the RULE (i.e., the government) of the "Apostles and Prophets." Wagner says,
"God has prepared us for this moment: Intercessors began to be recognized in the 1970s, prophets in the 1980s, and apostles in the 1990s. THE GOVERNMENT OF THE CHURCH IS IN PLACE and we must be obedient ... (The apostles are now prepared to rule over the saints and prepare them for war) ... the church leaders most responsible for MOVING BELIEVERS INTO WAR ARE THE APOSTLES ..."
Speaking concerning the discipline that the "government of the church" must be prepared to impose on believers who "vacillate" as the church prepares itself for war in conjunction with Bush's American New World Order System, Rick Joyner writes,
"SOME PASTORS AND LEADERS WHO CONTINUE TO RESIST THIS TIDE ... MUST BE REMOVED FROM THEIR PLACE."
"... there will be many 'stumbling blocks' circulating in the church ... . Those serving in leadership must trust their discernment and REMOVE the 'stumbling blocks'."
Wagner says that "pacifism" in the church opens the door to "a spirit of fear." The "government of the church" must drive out that spirit by imposing OBEDIENCE on the saints - again, the kind of obedience that will culminate in church UNITY. This will then enable the church to take its place with Bush (and America) in what he calls "this great prophetic moment." [Please see our article, "Today's Church: Making Zombies out of Christians: The Prophets and Apostles Movement."]
"I believe that we are on the threshold of entering into a season in which the power of God in prophecy, healing, miracles, strategic-level spiritual warfare ... will be widely manifested."
Pope Gregory VII couldn't have said it better.
Can anyone who is reasonably conversant with the Prophetic Scriptures doubt that this kind of thinking is not the fulfillment of Revelation 17? - a picture of things in the "end of days" that portrays a religious system - a "Woman" - sitting on a "Beast" full of names of blasphemy (cursings, profanities, impieties and irreverence) towards God? And can anyone really doubt the twin entities that the Scripture has in view here? - the United States and the American Church? [Please see Chapter XIV of the Antipas Papers, "The Beast of Revelation 17" and Chapter XV of the Antipas Papers, "The Woman of Revelation 17;" please also see our last article, "Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth."]
"Turning then to the seventeenth chapter of the Book of Revelation, we see the whole stage filled with two personalities only: a "Beast" and a "Woman" ... these two ... picture ... the future prophetic earth ... there can be no argument or discussion as to this speaking of both the CIVIL [political, economic, and military] and ECCLESIASTICAL [religious] conditions that will rule and characterize that part of the earth that is within the limits or boundaries of Prophecy. The whole of it will be filled with what shall answer to this 'Beast' and this 'Woman'. The two [the 'Beast' (which answers to the Civil Power) and the 'Woman' (which answers to the Religious Power) are thus indissolubly co-related, and tell us to what end all [this is] trending; and that is that there will eventually be a one World-Empire and a one World-Church, and these will cover the whole of what is now called CHRISTENDOM; the one Empire supporting the one Church, [as] the 'Beast' in the picture supports the 'Woman', and the 'Woman' is supported by the 'Beast' ... "
Come on now! - isn't that a precise picture of what's going on in the United States? Of course it is! Isn't this exactly the kind of America that Wagner and his ilk are pressing towards? Of course it is? And isn't this the kind of union between church and state that President Bush and Karl Rove are encouraging as a result of their pandering to the Religious Right? Of course it is! Finally, isn't this dual system of church and state the exact kind of system that plunged the world into the holy wars that pitted Islam against the Christianity 1,000 years ago? Of course it is!
When we speak, therefore, of a race back to the Dark Ages we're not just blowing smoke! AND THIS NEW SYSTEM OF THINGS IS EMANATING STRAIGHT OUT OF AMERICA, and is spreading out and filling the world.
Dear brothers and sisters in the Lord: Our progress towards the "End Game" is already very, very far advanced. The time for judgment has arrived, a time that will make people "... cry out to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath [i.e., judgment] is come; and who shall be able to stand?" (Rev. 6:16-17).
Consider seriously - very seriously - all that we have discussed so far:
The Bible says that this great day - the day of judgment - will be preceded by unprecedented FAMINES, PESTILENCES, EARTHQUAKES and other "natural disasters" in divers places. And isn't that exactly what's been happening?
Again, just think about it! - IN LESS THAN A YEAR NOW WE HAVE SUFFERED -
The elites, of course, would like to attribute these sufferings to the "backwardness" of the African continent and to the people of Africa themselves; and although they never quite say it, what they are implying is that the Africans are not as "advanced" as white Europeans and North Americans. But that's nothing more than a despicable "cop-out" to cover their own sins in the rape of Africa. The Bible says that we are ALL "sons and daughters of Adam" with EXACTLY the same mental, intellectual, moral and spiritual capacities. [Please see our two articles, (1) "Racism and Right Wing Christianity - The Bell Curve" and (2) the "Hamitic Hypothesis."]
Before judgment is rendered, however, there will be a "trial" (so to speak) - the "hour of testing" (Rev. 3:10); that's what the Tribulation is all about. This "trial" will separate those who claim to be Christians and are not (the goats) from those who really are (the sheep). The Bible says: "Not everyone who says unto me Lord, Lord shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven." (Matt. 7:21) The separation process will be based on how one relates to the American New World Order System and - ipso facto - his treatment of the poor and dispossessed of the world. (Matt. 25:44-46). The course of the Tribulation is as follows:
As described by the Prophetic Scriptures, the Gog/Magog War will begin shortly after the consummation of a defense pact between Israel and the United States guaranteeing Israel's security in connection with an Israeli/Palestinian Peace Accord predicated on an Israeli withdrawal back to the so-called "Green Line" (Israel's 1967 Border) and the reduction of Israel's security wall. The hope here is that such an agreement will diffuse the frenzy of Islamic Radicalism in the Near East. The accord will fail; but the defense pact will remain intact.
The U.S. will seize the oil fields [i.e., the "hidden treasures" (Dan. 11:43)] of the Middle East and take steps to place Israel under what will amount to be a permanent occupation, fulfilling the words of Scripture to Israel: "The overflowing scourge (the military forces of the United States) shall pass through, then ye (Israel) shall be trodden down by it." (Isaiah 28:18)
Using its victory in the Gog/Magog War, the U.S. will then launch a ruthless and bloody war to erase all the opponents of the American New World Order System worldwide. This campaign will continue all through the first half of the Tribulation Period (i.e., The "Beginning of Sorrows") up to the "Abomination of Desolation," at which time the Beast will throw off his "Christian Mask" and reveal himself for what he really is: The DEVIL'S PAW. [We urge you to read our article, "The Superman Theology of the International Christian Embassy's Feast of Tabernacles" which unravels the convoluted relationship between the American Church and the present state of Israel, and which delineates "big time" trouble ahead between the two.]
It is difficult to say what the exact events will be that will finally light the fuse to the Gog/Magog War which will blow up the Middle East and, ultimately, the world. We are left to speculate on that matter. This much we do know, however: Historical forces are now at work pressing towards that end, and that's especially true insofar as these forces are impinging on the United States.
Things cannot continue as they are insofar as the American New World Order System is concerned. U.S. military forces are stretched to the breaking point as a result of their "drawdown" after the end of the Cold War. What's more, even if the present "caps" on the size of the army were to be lifted, there is no longer any possibility that the army could be rebuilt to the levels of the Cold War without conscription. It's one thing, after all, to join a "peace-time" army to get college and VA benefits, but it's quite another to put your life on the line to get these benefits during a war.
All this presents the American elites with an impossibly difficult problem: How does one hold together a worldwide empire with an army less than half the size it was fifteen years ago? The fact is, the U.S. military has troops stationed in 127 different countries around the world. In addition, it has two on-going "hot wars" - one in Afghanistan and the other in Iraq; it is facing down an army that numbers close to a million men on the Korean Peninsula; and it is fighting more than ten so-called "counter-insurgency wars" around the world, the largest of which is the war in Colombia against the FARC. Moreover, it is facing an accelerating "civil-insurgency" against its New World Order System in Latin America led by President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela.
What to do? Well, there isn't much it can do at the present time. The fact is, even if the U.S. possessed an army three-times the size it possesses today, the U.S. military would be hard-pressed to quash the various challenges to its rule that are sprouting up throughout the length and breadth of the Empire.
Now you must understand something here! - money isn't the problem, and for people who think it is, they simply don't understand the financial structures that undergird the Empire or how the Empire really works.
The trade deficits and budget deficits that the U.S. habitually runs and about which naïfs habitually complain are in reality part of a complex financial system designed to compel the flow of TRIBUTE MONEY to the United States from the Empire's slave-states: Specifically, the European Union, Japan, China, and most of the other nations of the world.
These nations are forced to accept what amounts as IOUs (bonds) as payment on the debt the U.S. owes them as a result of America's budgetary and trade deficits; but, as Professor Michael Hudson writes in his book, Super Imperialism: The Origin and Fundamentals of U.S. World Dominance, THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED TO USE THESE DOLLARS TO BUY INTO THE AMERICAN ECONOMY "the way American investors bought into theirs in the 1950s and 1960s." They are not even allowed to buy back the industries and other hard assets the U.S. bought from them during the 1950s and 1960s. They are forced to sit on these dollars - and that's the end of it. This system of things balances their books, but that's about all it does insofar as the tribute-paying countries of the American New World Order System are concerned; and ultimately, while this system enriches the few in these tribute states, it impoverishes the overwhelming majority.
TRIBUTE! - that's what this kind of thing was called during the Roman Empire when Rome transferred money from its tributary states to its coffers in Rome. It's what all past empires have done, and it is what the U.S. is doing today to the rest of the world. Hudson calls it SUPER IMPERIALISM; a system of extortion that -
"... involve an adroit use of central banks, the IMF, the World Bank and its associated regional lending institutions to provide FORCED loans to the U.S. Treasury - loans that the U.S. never intends to repay. This rigged game has enabled the United States to flood the world with dollars without constraint as it appropriates foreign resources and companies, goods and services FOR NOTHING IN RETURN EXCEPT TREASURY IOUs ..."
THE U.S. ENFORCES THIS "RIGGED SYSTEM" ON THE RESTO F THE WORLD BY RECOURSE TO ITS POSITION AS THE WORLD'S ONLY MILITARY SUPER-POWER, and, according to Hudson,
"The central banks of Europe, Japan, OPEC, China [and the rest of the world] have totally acquiesced to it."
Obviously, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to recognize that this tribute system does not go down well in the rest of the world, and as this system becomes ever more onerous, it takes a larger and larger military for the U.S. to enforce subservience on its vassal states, which in the end means CONSCRIPTION.
Again, money isn't the problem - it's getting the American public to acquiesce to the forced CONSCRIPTION of their sons and daughters into the U.S. military. That's the problem. [Please see our two articles, "Closing the Trap: The Draft [Catching Those Christians Who Think Prophecy Is Just a Game]" and "The Draft: You Had Better Get Ready."]
As a result, WHAT THE U.S. NEEDS IS A NEW PEARL HARBOR; either that or a "natural disaster" so huge that the U.S. can impose UNIVERSAL NATIONAL SERVICE on its population, and siphon off a good number of these people into the military. But - again - the American elites need either (1) a new Pearl Harbor or (2) a huge "natural disaster" to use as "cover" in order to sucker the U.S. population into sacrificing their sons and daughters on the altar in the interest of U.S. finance.
Until the Empire is handed such an event or events, the Empire will be left dangling in the wind. But, as the old and rather trite saying goes, When the going gets tough, the tough get going. And that's certainly true of the Empire's current leader, George Bush.
Consider, for example, what Bush normally does when he is cornered and desperate - as he now appears to be in the face of his plummeting poll numbers, the continuing debacle in Iraq, and the drip-drip-drip of poison from the CIA leak investigation: He firms up his core supporters and / or HE MAKES A DESPERATE GAMBLE TO CHANGE THE EQUATION.
He's doing both now.
He began this two pronged strategy about a month ago when he pulled the nomination of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court and replaced her with Samuel Alieto. In nominating Miers, Bush had hoped to avoid a fierce fight with Democrats in the Senate over social, religious and cultural issues; it was enough to his business backers that Miers was an economic conservative who could be counted on to cut benefits to the poor and expand government programs that benefited the rich. That's what's really important to the richy-riches who back Bush, not the "nonsense" that swirls around the "traditional values" issues that animate the Religious Right. Money - that's what counts with the economic elites that support Bush, not religion.
Bush had hoped to appease his Religious Right backers by pointing out that Miers was an evangelical Christian. But she had no track record as a conservative jurist who could be counted on to "fight the good fight" against the "abortionists," the homosexuals, the radical feminists, the "secular-humanists," the atheists, etc, The Religious Right had been suckered by this kind of accommodation with the country-club conservatives of the Republican Party in the past - and had been badly disappointed. They would have none of it now. "No more Sourters, no more Kennedys" - that was the cry from the Religious Right. They wanted someone like Alieto who had a conservative track record on social issues and could be counted on to overturn Roe v. Wade and put an end to the high court's animosity toward organized religion; specifically, Christianity.
Cornered and desperate now, with his poll numbers slipping and with the Democrats threatening to do to him over the "Valerie Plaime Affair" what they had done to Nixon thirty years ago over Watergate, Bush decided to shore up his conservative base by persuading Miers to withdraw in favor of Alieto. It would mean a bruising battle with Senate Democrats over Alieto's confirmation - but it would engender the kind of conflict that would enliven his core base of supporters and harden them against his domestic critics, especially insofar as the "War on Terrorism" is concerned.
The Democrats, who hold only 44 of the Senate's 100 seats, have no way to block a Republican-backed nominee for confirmation to the Supreme Court without employing a filibuster which takes 60 votes to stop. But this tactic - i.e., the use of a filibuster - is not a Senate rule written in stone. As strange as it may seem, the rule itself can be overturned by a simple majority vote in the Senate. Such a tactic - what some call the "nuclear option" - has never been used before, but there's no reason why it couldn't be employed. If the Democrats employ the filibuster, and the Republicans are unable to muster the 60 votes necessary to quash it, they can then call for a change in the Senate's rules, write the use of the filibuster out of the Senate rules, and resubmit the Alieto nomination for confirmation based merely on a simple majority.
The kind of Culture War that would result from this maneuver is EXACTLY the kind of war for which Bush's Religious Right supporters have been panting for years now. If Bush were successful here, he would gain him the kind of ROCK-HARD support he needs from his core followers to reintroduce CONSCRIPTION to expand the army to the numbers needed to hold the Empire together.
He also needs to "change the equation" of American politics so he can create the kind of "government" he needs to prosecute the "War on Terrorism" - i.e., he needs a dictatorship; to that end, he needs pretty much the same "cover" he requires to re-introduce conscription:
Both of these kinds of events would give the Bush administration the "cover" to "change times and laws" (Dan. 7:25) and impose Martial Law on the American people. AND DON'T THINK THAT THE NEO-CONS AND THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT TOADIES THAT SURROUND BUSH ARE NOT CAPABLE OF FABRICATING SUCH AN EVENT, after all, they're bringing in the "Kingdom of God" and anything goes when one is working for God. The fact is, there are growing numbers of people who fervently believe that those who surround Bush are more than capable of fabricating a "natural disaster" or another 9-11 event to get what they want: CONSCRIPTION and MARTIAL LAW.
That's what Daniel Ellsberg, who did so much to expose the government's lies during the Vietnam War (the Pentagon Papers), thinks. He recently warned against another 9/11 type incident, after which Bush would make "the Patriot Act look like the Bill of Rights." He went on to say:
"People who steal election and believe they're on a 'mission from God' will not go without a fight'."
Plainly, all that's needed now for a dictatorship to be imposed on the United States is for someone to light the fuse and "manufacture" another 9-11 event or a "natural disaster." WHEN THAT HAPPENS, "ALL BETS ARE OFF."
"PUT YE IN THE SICKLE, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great.
"Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.
"The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. (Joel 3:13-15)
Brothers and sisters, listen to me here! I somberly warn you, the world is about ready to be reaped [Joel 3:13-15 (above)] - and you're Christianity is about to be tested: and after that, the JUDGMENT.
In this test, it's not what you claim to be that will count for anything, but what you really are: What you PROVE yourself to be. Again, the Bible says:
"NOT EVERY ONE THAT SAITH UNTO ME, LORD, LORD, SHALL ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." (Matt. 7:21)
"... COME OUT OF HER, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. (Rev. 18:4) [Please see our article, "Come out of Her."]
This is a three-part DECLARATIVE sentence.
1. The FIRST part reads:
"COME OUT OF HER." That's a non-negotiable DEMAND. There are no "ifs," "ands" or "buts" attached to it - and if you are truly a servant of God, you MUST obey.
2. The SECOND part reads:
"... that ye be not partakers of her sins ..." You are COMMANDED to "come out" because if you don't, you will be spiritually COMPROMISED. There is NO room here for you to believe that if you disobey God and stay, you will not be compromised. If you couldn't obey God in the first instance, what makes you think that you will be able to stand in the second instance? No! - by staying you prove that you are one of those about whom the Bible says have gone "... the way of Cain, and run greedily after the error of Balaam for reward." No matter how piously you attempt to cover your disobedience (Jude 1:11); you are no different than Esau who "for one morsel of meat sold his birthright" (Heb. 12:16), and -
"... when he would have inherited the blessing, HE WAS REJECTED: for he found no place of repentance, THOUGH HE SOUGHT IT CAREFULLY WITH TEARS." (Heb. 12:17)
In connection with this, it is a very dangerous thing for you to believe that somehow or other you are any better than those of your peers who have already succumbed to the fetid poison that is now extant in the American Church (and that is now seeping into the very fabric of the nation itself), OR do you think that all of the following were always reprobate? - Christians such as Harald Bredesen, Paul Crouch, David and Justin Du Plessis, Jack Hayford, Ken Metz, Charles Stanley, D. James Kennedy, Tim LaHaye, the late John Wimber, Juan Carlos Ortiz, C. Peter Wagner, Beverley LaHaye, Ern Baxter, Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, Oral Roberts, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Chuck Colson, David Yonggi Cho, Robert Stearns, Mike Bickle, Reuven Doron, Che Ahn, Frank Hammond, Cindy Jacobs, Bill Hamon, John Eckhardt, Bobbie Byerly, Dutch Sheets, Jim Goll, John Paul Jackson, James Ryle, Frank Damazio, Ed Silvoso, Carlos Annacondia, Claudio Freidzon, Roger Mitchell, Ted Haggart, Paul Cain, Chuck Pierce, Rick Joyner, Kingsley Fletcher, Jim Laffoon, Barbara Wentroble, ad infinitum.
Some of these so-called Christians were, of course, reprobate from the beginning, but not all of them. However, they all certainly are now! They long ago sold themselves out for the sake of filthy lucre (money). That's precisely what the Scriptures mean when they speak of the "error of Balaam" (above); people who, as Darby explains -
And who, as the Bible says -
And isn't this what the leaders of the American Church are doing? - of course it is, fulfilling the prophecy that -
3. The THIRD part of Revelation 18:4 reads:
"... that ye receive not of her plagues [judgments]." If you stay and are compromised (which will surely happen to you if you stay), you will be judged with the enemies of God; and - like Esau who sold his birthright - you will not find repentance, no matter how hard you search for it, even with many tears.
Now, this command - i.e., "COME OUT OF HER" Rev. 18:4) - is not my command; it's God's command. This has nothing to do with me. It will do you no good to argue with me; it will do you no good to ask me for an "indulgence" in this matter. It is far beyond my poor power to grant you one.
Whatever your reason for staying in the United States in light of God's command in Rev. 18:4, IT IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH! - even if you think you are on some kind of "mission from God." NOW is the time for OBEDIENCE; not tomorrow or sometime in the future at your convenience. [Please see our article, "The Cost of Discipleship."]
The fact is, when you act on your own convenience, you prove that you have gone the "way of Cain" (Jude 1:11). [cf. Gen. 4:1] Scofield explains:
"Cain is a type of the religious, natural man, who believes in God ... BUT AFTER HIS OWN WILL ..."
That's precisely what Christians are doing when they hear the COMMAND of God, but "add to" or "subtract from" its IMMEDIACY according to their own will. But you have NO right to detract from the IMMEDIACY of this COMMAND!
For those of you who think that you can "add to" or "subtract from" the IMMEDIACY of Rev. 18:4, you would do well to bear in mind the fearful warning of Scripture that says:
"For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, GOD SHALL ADD UNTO HIM THE PLAGUES THAT ARE WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK:
"And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, GOD SHALL TAKE AWAY HIS PART OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE, AND OUT OF THE HOLY CITY, and from the things which are written in this book.
And isn't that what you are doing when you add your excuse for not going to the words of Revelation 18:4, or when you ignore this command altogether? - for whatever reason! Of course it is. Darby echoes Scofield (above) when he says that when one adds his excuse to the command of God, or when he rejects that command altogether -
"... they abuse the grace of God IN ORDER TO INDULGE THEIR OWN CONVENIENCE."
The Apostle Jude calls such Christians "filthy dreamers" - not my words, but the Bible's. And why is that? - because their Christianity is a "dream" and nothing more; there is no substance to it. As Darby explains,
"... they possess the name of Christian, but ... the truth is not in them." (cf. Jude 1:8);
Christianity is a matter of convenience to them. They obey God when it is convenient for them to do so. They would not, of course, put it that way; they would rather insist that they are waiting "on the movement of the Spirit of God within them" - as if their "feelings" take precedence over the clear COMMAND of God in His WRITTEN WORD.
How totally arrogant for people to think that God will wait on their convenience. The Bible says:
"Wherefore, as the Holy Ghost saith, TODAY if ye will hear his voice,
"Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
"When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years.
"Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, THEY DO ALWAYS ERR IN THEIR HEART; and they have not known my ways.
"So I sware in my wrath, THEY SHALL NOT ENTER INTO MY REST." (Heb. 3:7-11)
The Bible says that today - NOW! - is the time for obedience, not by-and-by when you think it is convenient, or when you feel a "moving in your spirit" - even if you think you are dong a favor for God by waiting.
To think such a thing is a PROVOCATION to God. That's what the Bible says (Heb. 3:8) - and it is NOT a good thing for you to provoke God. When God speaks, He expects unquestioning OBEDIENCE from you; and if you fail to obey - and obey immediately - you have no right to call yourself His servant - AND WHEN THE DOORS OF THE COUNTRY SUDDENLY - AND QUITE UNEXPECTEDLY - SLAM SHUT ON YOU (AS THEY SURELY WILL), DO NOT THINK ON THAT DAY THAT YOUR MANY TEARS WILL AVAIL YOU ANYTHING INSOFAR AS GOD IS CONCERNED. That's what the five foolish virgins thought, and they were wrong (cf. Matt. 25:1-13); and that's what Esau thought, and he was wrong as well. (cf. Heb. 12:16)
Obeying God is a matter of faith! If you fail to obey Him, then don't say that you have faith! You don't! You retort, I have faith whether my works prove it or not! But the Bible says that the kind of faith that does not MANIFEST itself in works (i.e., in obedience) is dead:
"Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. (James 2:18)
Now this isn't to say that in a very slight way you might still believe; but that kind of shallow belief will get you nowhere with God. The Bible says:
"Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils [demons] also believe, and tremble." (James 2:19)
And you should know that - like the demons - there is a fearful judgment awaiting those whose faith does not manifest itself in obedience; and, again, I speak here specifically in reference to God's COMMAND in Rev. 18:4, OR do you think that God said in vain concerning those who refused to obey Him to go into the Promised Land -
"THEY SHALL NOT ENTER INTO MY REST." (Heb. 3:7-11)
And make no mistake about it - this remonstration is meant for YOU as well. The Bible says:
"Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God." (Heb. 3:12)
The one verse follows on the other. Obviously then, this warning is meant also for you and not just for the saints of the Old Testament.
So much for those who live in the United States.
To those in other lands (together with those who obey God and leave Babylon), the command to you is to TESTIFY AGAINST ALL THOSE CHURCHES IN YOUR COUNTRIES WHO ARE IN ANY WAY CONNECTED TO THE AMERICAN NEW WORLD ORDER SYSTEM, AND WARN YOUR NEIGHBORS NOT TO GET MIXED UP WITH THEM - FOR WHATEVER REASON. If they do - and they will be sorely tempted to do so because of the largess the American church will tempt them with - THEY WILL SUFFER THE SAME FATE THAT THEIR BRETHREN IN THE UNITED STATES WILL SUFFER. You CANNOT tie yourself to the American New World Order System or to any church that supports that system and not suffer the wrath of God. This is the "GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM" - and the Bible says:
"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." (Matt. 24:14) [Please see our articles, "The Power of Self-Sacrifice: Taking up Our Cross and Following Him," "The Good News Of The Coming Kingdom," and "I Am Amazed."]
God bless you all,
"If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal (material) things?" (1Cor. 9:11)
If you have benefited from this ministry, then we ask that you return the favor by ministering to us of your material things. We need your continued financial support for this ministry - which is moment by moment under very heavy spiritual and physical attack - if we are to go forward.
We need your help to spread the word concerning Antipas Ministries and the eschatological viewpoint it represents; WE NEED YOUR HELP BECAUSE WE DO NOT "LINK" WITH OTHER SO-CALLED "CHRISTIAN" WEBSITES which are, for the most part, "in the tank" insofar as their loyalty to the United States is concerned - a loyalty that has made them partners in the BLOODY trail the American military has left in its TERROR-RIDDEN rampage throughout the world, as well as making them partners in the abject poverty that American corporations have imposed on the peoples and nations the American military machine has ravaged - A BLOODY, TERROR-RIDDEN RAMPAGE THAT HAS TO A LARGE DEGREE BEEN CARRIED OUT IN THE NAME OF THE "PRINCE OF PEACE." [Please see our articles, "The Third World as a Model for the New World Order," Inside the American New World Order System" and "The American Empire: The Corporate / Pentagon / CIA / Missionary Archipelago."]
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