September 29, 2008

Revelation Re-visit - A New Study

The following paper presents an analysis of two key chapters (13 and 17) in the Bible's Book of Revelation.
The Book of Revelation is the last book of the Bible, and perhaps the most abused sacred literature due to its vivid but confusing mosaic of imagery that can be so easily misinterpreted to suit a variety of ends. My approach starts with a reading of the text, with informative comments juxtaposed, and then proceeds to a unique attempt at ‘unforced deduction,’ where the text explains itself... using interpretive keys supplied within the text, in the light of recent historical events. Whether you are a ‘Christian’ of some stripe, an adherent of another faith, or a non-believer, I invite you to see how the Bible explains and validates itself... if only we allow it.
Important notes to keep in mind: 1) Revelation is a symbolic book, the record of John's visions; all numbers and images must be considered as symbolic, not literal. 2) the major images (see 1st comment) are defined within the text-- we don't have to impose supposed meanings.

Revelation 13
Text (from NASB)
Comments

1 And the dragon stood on the sand of the seashore. Then I saw a beast coming up out of the sea, having ten horns and seven heads, and on his horns were ten diadems, and on his heads were blasphemous names.
Beast = ‘nation,’ country, empire
Dragon = Satan (the Devil)
Sea = populous area; the ‘old world’
Horns = rulers
Heads = kingdoms, nations
Diadems = sign of authority, rulership
Blasphemous - indicates un-Godly
2 And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were like those of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion And the dragon gave him his power and his throne and great authority. Leopard = Greece
Bear = Medo-Persia
Lion = Babylon
Throne = dominance
This beast is a composite of several empires, & operates with satanic power.
3 I saw one of his heads as if it had been slain, and his fatal wound was healed And the whole earth was amazed and followed after the beast; 1 of the 7 nations is apparently destroyed but later is restored, to the amazement of the world.
4 they worshiped the dragon because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, "Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?" ‘Everyone’ worships Satan, perhaps not even aware, since it is done as patriotism.

The ‘empire’ has absolute military power.
5 There was given to him a mouth speaking arrogant words and blasphemies, and authority to act for forty-two months was given to him. The empire’s rulers/spokespersons speak with worldly arrogance;
This entity is virtually unopposed for ’42’ symbolic months = 1260 days = 3 ½ years. Pos. 1260 years; or an indeterminately long, symbolic period.
6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, that is, those who dwell in heaven. Blasphemy=disrespect for God, sacred things.
Tabernacle=the ‘church’, ‘saints’, who are, spiritually, residents of heaven.
7 It was also given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him. The empire oppresses the believers; some give up their faith. It has global power in a secular sense.
8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain. Everyone on earth will give homage to the empire except for the steadfast believers in Jesus, who refuse.
9 If anyone has an ear, let him hear. Listen up-- even ‘one ear’ will suffice!
10 If anyone is destined for captivity, to captivity he goes; if anyone kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed. Here is the perseverance and the faith of the saints. ‘Looks like there’s no escaping destiny... and fate.
The faithful must hold on thru all this persecution.

11 Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb and he spoke as a dragon.
Another prominent nation arises; this time from a less populous region.
It looks innocent, but ‘carries a big stick.’
12 He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence And he makes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose fatal wound was healed. This nation has similar satanic power to the 1st one, and is contemporary with the restored nation. It forces every one to pay homage to the 1st nation that was revived.
13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down out of heaven to the earth in the presence of men. This nation can bring down fire-power with ‘shock & awe’, and on the ‘world stage’ .
14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform in the presence of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who had the wound of the sword and has come to life. This nation deceives everyone with its impressive ‘magic.’

It prevails on the world to make an ‘image’ (?) in honor of the 1st nation.
15 And it was given to him to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast would even speak and cause as many as do not worship the image of the beast to be killed. Somehow, the 2nd nation injects ‘life’ into the image; this image has ‘speech’ and can impose death on those who refuse to worship it (follow its dictates).
16 And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand or on their forehead ‘He’ (the nation, presumably) forces everyone to accept a symbolic ‘mark’ on the hand or forehead, indicative of slavery to the system.
Hand or forehead may imply either implicit/ practical, or else conscious assent.
17 and he provides that no one will be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the beast or the number of his name. Only those having the ‘mark’ are allowed to ‘buy or sell.’ [Unclear if literal or not.]
The mark relates to the name of this nation, or to the ‘number of its name.’
Commerce may imply expression of ideas,especially of truth.
18 Here is wisdom: Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six hundred & sixty-six. With divine enlightenment, one can determine this nation… its ‘no.’ is ‘that of a man,’ and = 666. Could it be a nation named after a man? A nation with divine aspirations but doomed never to attain them?


Revelation 17

1 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and spoke with me, saying, "Come here, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters, bowl = symbolic container of penalties
harlot = apostate church
judgment = fate, punishment
waters = people, populations
‘Seems to be a church that
includes many people.
2 with whom the kings of the earth committed acts of immorality, and those who dwell on the earth were made drunk with the wine of her immorality." Earthly rulers are ‘in bed’ with this church, and many people are caught up in her scandalous values and behavior.
3 And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness; and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast, full of blasphemous names, having seven heads and ten horns. Wilderness = unpopulated area
Woman = church
Scarlet beast = bloody/infamous nation
7 heads & 10 horns - recalls the beast of Rev. 13 (& Daniel 7).
4 The woman was clothed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a gold cup full of abominations and of the unclean things of her immorality, Purple & scarlet - priestly garb (‘Papal’)
gold etc = valuables; great wealth
gold cup - looks good on outside, but full of filthy realities… religious hypocrisy!
5 and on her forehead a name was written, a mystery, "BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH." Mystery = occultism
Babylon = Sumer; birthplace of false religion and abhorrent, occult practices. Mother of harlots = origin of all false religions with ungodly practices.
6 And I saw the woman drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the witnesses of Jesus. When I saw her, I wondered greatly. A church steeped in the deaths of many true believers in Christ.
The Roman (Catholic) Church’s history fits this image, but likely is not the only one.
7 And the angel said to me, "Why do you wonder? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns. (We hope to get some heaven-sent illumination here!) If the beast is the ‘old world,’ then the woman seems to be the Roman church (later, RC church).
8 "The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and go to destruction And those who dwell on the earth, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, will wonder when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come. The nation existed before the time of this vision; but at that time did not exist. It will rise up once again, and is destined for destruction. It rises from the ‘abyss of time’ or of history… or of dispersion.
Those living when this nation is restored will be amazed to see this restoration.
9 "Here is the mind which has wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits, Mountains = thrones; governments(?)
7 = completeness
A church that presides over ‘7’ symbolic mounts; a universal church (RC).
10 and they are seven kings; five have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come; and when he comes, he must remain a little while. Kings = kingdoms, ‘countries’
5 were gone at the time of the vision;
1 was in existence in ~ 90 AD; (Rome);
1 hadn’t appeared yet, at that time.
(5 + 1 + 1 = 7)
11 "The beast which was and is not, is himself also an eighth and is one of the seven, and he goes to destruction. The kingdom that had gone in 90AD but will return was one of the 7 kingdoms, and will become an ‘8th’ nation when it is restored. Ie. it is the one that hadn’t yet appeared (above) but is somehow ‘new.
12 "The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but they receive authority as kings with the beast for one hour. Horns = ‘kings’ or rulers.
These kingdoms didn’t exist in John’s day, but will be in power when the ‘scarlet beast’ makes its final moves in the last moments of history.
13 "These have one purpose, and they give their power and authority to the beast. These end-times rulers give their allegiance to the nation being ridden by the apostate church.

14 "These will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful."
The end-times rulers make war on Jesus (his church?) but will be defeated.
15 And he said to me, "The waters which you saw where the harlot sits, are peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues. Waters = crowds of people (as above) in a multicultural setting-- likely Europe.
16 "And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the harlot and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire. The rulers and the restored nation will turn on the false religion and destroy it.
17 "For God has put it in their hearts to execute His purpose by having a common purpose, and by giving their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God will be fulfilled. Despite their plots, the rulers are being directed by God to do His will. They give their authority to the restored nation, but only until God’s will is done.
18 "The woman whom you saw is the great city, which reigns over the kings of the earth." Woman = ‘city’; human construction
Great city = (probably) a nation, country
Seems to be one nation that has hegemony over all earthly rulers.
Analysis

After going thru this dissection of the text, letting scripture define its own terms as much as possible, and always bearing in mind that Revelation is a symbolic book, there are a number of reasonable inferences that emerge. Re-capping:

  1. The text refers to a nation that had disappeared at the time of John’s writing, yet would reappear later in history;
  2. when this nation reappears it will cause many to be amazed;
  3. this nation is associated with the name of a man; and perhaps aspires to attain godly heights… their way.
  4. this nation was among a group of 7 that existed in a then-populous region-- i.e. the Middle East-- before it was extinguished;
  5. when it reappears, it will be in some ‘new’ form (different from the 1st appearance);
  6. this nation is associated with a false religion somehow;
  7. there is another nation that appears later, that will be closely allied with the restored nation-- it wasn’t one of the original 7; but when it arises in an unpopulated area, it will enforce homage to the old/restored nation;
  8. this ‘new nation’ will first appear benign (lamb-like), but will issue draconian edicts that will cause all other nations to ‘fall into line’ with it;
  9. the new nation is being directed by a false, apostate religion;
  10. there seems to be a blurring between the woman as a church and as a ‘city,’ but in any case, there is a highly urbanized nation that exercises hegemony over all other nations;
  11. a set of ‘ten’ symbolic kingdoms arise in the end-times and they give their ‘power and authority’ to the restored kingdom for a short time (17:12-13).

When you look at the facts laid out like this, while there may still be some fuzzy details, nonetheless, some conclusions jump out as inescapable!

As soon as you mention ‘restored nation’ the obvious candidate that leaps out is ‘Israel’. Its name comes directly from ‘a man,’ their patriarch Jacob who was renamed Israel. Ancient Israel was one of a group of seven prominent nations in the Middle East that includes Egypt, Assyria, Persia, Greece, Babylonia, and Rome. With their rejection of the Messiah, Israel’s treasured, cultural religion, Judaism, is become an antichristian blasphemy. In any case, as a nation, Israel has always aspired to ‘help’ God do things their way. From the taking of the Promised Land, to the Pharisaical plot to eliminate Jesus, the children of Israel preferred their deeds to acceptance of God’s grace. The dramatic restoration of the Jewish homeland of Israel in the land of Palestine in 1948 was indeed seen as amazing, if not miraculous, by the on-looking world. While many assumed that it must be due to God’s intervention, there are others who have investigated the creation of the modern state of Israel, and find that it was rather due to conniving plans dating back to the late 19th century and revamped following the First World War. It was not God’s hand that was involved, but that of the Dragon, motivating Zionist agents behind the scenes of diplomacy. The Bible had this insight long before any modern pundit could possibly discern the covert machinations that culminated in a restored Jewish state. However, this resuscitated nation is a pretender! Altho populated by Jews (encompassing Benjamites and Levites), they call themselves Israel, in pretense of representing the original, full 12 tribes of Jacob. And whereas ancient Israel, the state, occasionally worshipped the true God, the new nation follows a worldly, ultra-nationalist, anti-religion that could be simply labeled as Zionism. Thus, ‘Israel’ has reappeared, in a new, ersatz format.

Now, the second prominent nation, the later one which is not of the original seven, and which originates in a less populous region, seems to reach its zenith near the culmination of apocalyptic events. Again, on the evidence, there’s one nation that immediately springs to mind-- the USA. Obviously, it didn’t exist at the time of John. And when it did appear, it arose in the ‘new world’, far from the populations of the old world. With its declaration of the rights and freedoms of individuals, particularly in regard to religious worship, the USA indeed looked lamb-like, and the two horns could symbolize the separation of church and state. Lately, there is no doubt about the dragon-like voice with which the US government has been throwing its weight around the world over the last 60 years or more. All nations of the world are compelled to heed the voice of the US government, whether they like it or not. In the vivid imagery of Revelation, this beast calls down fire from heaven, and deceives the Earth with the ‘signs’ he has the power to perform in front of the world. This made little sense-- until September 11, 2001, that is; now it reads as prescient indeed!

The lobbying of the ‘religious right’ has become increasingly influential since the Reagan presidency of the 1980s-- some call it a profane, false religion ‘directing’ affairs in D.C. At least, that is the cursory analysis of ‘the harlot riding the beast.’ However, one could argue that the religious right is still, nominally, Christian, and not necessarily what the prophecy points to. Geo-political events since ‘9-11-2001’ have uncovered a more covert connection between an abominable religion and the US administration. Summarizing a vast amount of evidence, let me state simply that there are undeniable indications that the cabinet in Washington is dominated by Zionist interests. One can think of Zionism as Judaism gone mad, or more properly, as a geo-political conspiracy (for the ‘New World Order’) whose luminaries seem to come largely from the ranks of Jews. In any case, there is a groundswell of evidence that the individuals who populate the US administration are linked to a panoply of occult practices and symbolism that can be traced back to ancient Babylon. These politicians congregate at the ‘Bohemian Grove’ (California) annually to indulge in bizarre, satanic rituals. That is their abominable, antichristian religion. It is well known that G.W. Bush is also a member of the Yale U. secret society called the ‘Skull and Bones.’ Many high-placed officials in Washington are associated with various occult/demonic societies, as a little Internet research will attest. One could argue that this ‘mystery cult’ of the elite could also represent the prostitute of the prophecy.

You can see that the other implication of this Zionist link to Washington is political. With increasing boldness, the Israeli government in Jerusalem exerts influence over the USA to do its dirty work in the Middle East. For decades the US delegation has used its veto in the Security Council of the United Nations to prevent censure of Israel. Lately, US foreign policy seems to be dictated by Israel. The First and Second Gulf Wars make little sense except when analyzed in the light of Israel using US military power to subdue its enemies in the Middle East theatre. When Israel invaded Lebanon in 2006, deliberately destroying civilian infrastructure and killing non-combatants, the US waited until it was too late before expressing some measure of reservation over the Israeli depredations. While Israel and the USA make an uproar about supposed nuclear ambitions by Iran, they simply ignore the open secret that Israel already possesses nuclear weapons, and has the means to deploy them. Any nation fingered by Washington must jump and salute; however, Israel gets a free pass. In other words, the ‘second beast’-- the USA-- causes the rest of the world to worship the first beast-- Israel. The trend is so marked that we can see that it’s an emergent reality of the ‘New World Order.’

As many commentators have speculated, the 10 horns of 17:12 probably refer to the leaders of the European Union, who have had reservations about Israel’s policies towards the Palestinians, yet in the end, support the US-British backing of Israel. Once EU membership exceeded ten nations, some pundits abandoned this view; but they fail to note that ‘ten’ is simply a symbolic count for an inclusive set. And in any case, only ten or less countries have significant influence on EU foreign affairs. This view also is in accord with Daniel’s vision of the statue in chapter 2, where the feet and toes (of iron mixed with clay) have long been identified as the ‘revived Roman Empire’ embodied in the modern EU, with its strained mix of strong and feeble economies.

The one piece of the puzzle that escapes me at present is the question of the ‘image of the beast.’ While the other pieces fall into place fairly neatly, this one is far from obvious, at least at this time. I expect that it will become apparent as events unfold, but for the time being, the image is an open question. The NIV translates the passage as: “an image in honor of the beast.” The NASB and the KJV translation is: “an image to the beast.” In the Amplified Bible, the passage reads: “a statue (an image) in the likeness of the beast.” So, we have the later nation commanding the inhabitants of the earth to ‘make an image’ that represents the first (restored) nation in some manner.

One thing is certain, tho; and that is that by means of so-called ‘anti-hate’ laws, it is becoming almost impossible for anyone to question Israeli policies and actions. Many commentators have taken the picture of ‘buying and selling’ quite literally, and have weaved some rather bizarre scenarios based on that view (e.g. micro-chips, bar-codes in people’s flesh). On the contrary, I expect that the figure is meant to be symbolic… but, of what? Perhaps Proverbs 23:23 gives a clue: “Buy truth, and do not sell it, Get wisdom and instruction and understanding.” Increasingly, no one in Western societies can dare openly criticize Israel without unleashing severe censure. It doesn’t take much imagination to foresee a time when any expression of reservation about Israel will result in prison or even death. And yet, how can we ‘get understanding’ if any criticism of Israel is crushed by so-called ‘anti-hate laws?’ Zechariah 11:4-6 is another passage that puts buying and selling in the context of duplicitous and predatory exploitation of one class by another, and God’s judgement on them. So, Rev 13:17 may be alluding to the fact that no one can speak truth about Israel and religion, but only mouth what the state permits.

My guess is that the construction of the image hasn’t yet happened, and when it does, we will be close to the end of the game. I predict that when the USA proposes some kind of ‘solution’ to the Middle East crisis that involves enforced homage to something that stands for (symbolizes, represents) the state of Israel, then we will recognize the fulfillment of this graphic prophecy. I expect that whatever it is, it will be a surprise to all, yet clear to those who remember scripture. The other factor is the ultimate uncovering of the false, apostate, mystic religion that masquerades as Christianity (or Judeo-Christianity) and that exercises covert control over the nations. It has long been realized that the Vatican, seat of RC authority, is full of mystic symbolism, derived from Egyptian and Babylonian sources. And since ‘Mystery Babylon’ is the ‘mother of ALL harlots,’ then all the Christian denominations are implicated, not just Roman Catholicism. Similarly, modern Judaism is seen as being heavily influenced by Kabbalah, a mystic school whose Jewish adepts say dates back to the time of ancient Babylon. (Some investigators claim various connections between the Vatican and Zionists, but those theories are rather speculative at this time.)

Finally, I should anticipate one observation that some readers who are versed in history may raise. The predictive imagery of widespread, bloody persecution of true believers by an apostate church prevailing upon government to do its bidding, may ring familiar. Yes, it happened during the Dark Ages, when the official, Rome-based Church persecuted ‘heretics’ of all kinds, especially those who revered the Bible. However, it is possible for prophecy to have a primary fulfillment, and a later reprise, according to some scholars. Thus, the persecution of the first millennium could be repeated in its characteristics in this third millennium, with different actors but the same plot... and a much shorter time frame.

What I hope this analysis demonstrates is that without imposing a lot of exogenous, novel, dogmatic interpretations on the text, and allowing the scriptures to illuminate themselves, a sensible picture readily emerges… and, without the need of a Ph.D. in something or other to do so. And another important thing is that the Bible is not a book of science-fiction or technological predictions. The abstract scenes in Revelation are sketches of geo-political and geo-religious currents, not of helicopters, atomic weapons, and so on (as sensationally claimed by some American Evangelicals). And note that the whole panorama would not be comprehensible until the time when it is needed.

Conclusions

We have to note that the text had to be written in such a way that an accurate prophecy can be presented without being so obvious that unscrupulous forces could suppress or alter it. And yet, the clues are skillfully encoded so that someone who has a reasonable understanding of history, and allows the scripture to explain itself, can gain a fairly clear grasp of who the actors are, and what they are doing. Still, the picture only clarifies after the fact; i.e. after the forecast events actually begin or unfold. In this process, it is astonishing to see how a book written millennia ago in a far-off land contains a description of the geo-political and religious situation that has unfolded over the last, mere half-century or so... within the lifetime of many who read this article. Friends, you can’t make this stuff up-- no human mind could produce the bizarre vision-clips of Revelation, and use them to accurately predict world political events 2,000 years in the future!

Clearly, the prophecies are designed to demonstrate and reveal that God is real and supreme, and that we can’t determine what will happen next-- it is entirely in His hands. Our job is just to trust and believe. I pray that sincere atheists will read this essay and have their eyes opened to the beauty of God’s scriptures. Remember, the Bible has been in a more or less final, ‘canonical’ state for many centuries. The prophecies survived intact to this day for the very purpose of demonstrating the genius behind them. No human could have achieved such a feat-- that’s why this book is truly a Revelation!

7 comments:

  1. yes, the original bible was a true revelation, but the Jews again played and changed it.
    In the bible of Barnabas , Jesus prophesiced the coming of the Percalates( the one who gives thanks, Ie MOHAMMED(saas)
    He said the master of the world would be born and He Jesus would be grateful if he was allowed to tie the shoelaces of Mohammed.
    We , Muslims will, Inshallah break the Israili and heathen backs!

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  2. Dear brother john please read my views on exactly the same topic on Pak alert blog (2012 comments)and please reply,it may be a new perspective . Regards usman

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  3. Consider another view. The seven heads of this wild beast stand for six major world powers featured in Bible history up to John’s day—Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome—and a seventh world power prophesied to appear later. (Compare Revelation 17:9, 10) There have been other world powers but these seven heads of the beast are the one’s that have effected God’s people. As you note, the dragon, or Satan gives life and power to these political kingdoms (Luke 4:6, 1John 5:19). So each head of the beast represents a world power that has existed in history, so represents Satan’s entire political system that he has built up through history to our day (Compare Daniel 8:15-26). There is not a lot of space here to elaborate but the 7th head represents the duel Anglo-American world power that now runs the world. This is the only world power after the Roman world power.

    But now another wild beast comes onto the world scene. John reports: “And I saw another wild beast ascending out of the earth, and it had two horns like a lamb, but it began speaking as a dragon. And it exercises all the authority of the first wild beast in its sight. And it makes the earth and those who dwell in it worship the first wild beast, whose death-stroke got healed. And it performs great signs, so that it should even make fire come down out of heaven to the earth in the sight of mankind.” (Revelation 13:11-13) This wild beast has two horns, indicating a partnership of two political powers. And it is described as coming out of the earth, not out of the sea. Thus, it comes out of Satan’s already established earthly system of things. It must be a world power, already existing, that takes on a significant role during the Lord’s day.
    What can it be? The Anglo-American World Power—the same as the seventh head of the first wild beast but in a special role! Isolating it in the vision as a separate wild beast helps us to see more clearly how it acts independently on the world stage. This figurative two-horned wild beast is made up of two coexisting, independent, but cooperating political powers. Its two horns “like a lamb” suggest that it makes itself out to be mild and inoffensive, with an enlightened form of government to which all the world should turn. But it speaks “as a dragon” in that it uses pressure and threats and even outright violence wherever its version of rulership is not accepted. It has not encouraged submission to God’s Kingdom under the rule of the Lamb of God but, rather, to the interests of Satan, the great dragon. It has promoted nationalistic divisions and hatreds that add up to worshipping the first wild beast.

    Is this two-horned wild beast as innocent as its lamblike horns would indicate? John goes on to say: “And it misleads those who dwell on the earth, because of the signs that were granted it to perform in the sight of the wild beast, while it tells those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the wild beast that had the sword-stroke and yet revived. And there was granted it to give breath to the image of the wild beast, so that the image of the wild beast should both speak and cause to be killed all those who would not in any way worship the image of the wild beast.”—Revelation 13:14, 15.
    What “image” did this two horned beast set up? The United Nations! Originally started as the League of Nations, but went off in destruction. Then came back basically the same but with a new name and stronger. This is an image of the first beast because all the government of the first beast now also belongs to the image, although some only fragment of what they once were. The point is that both beasts represent Satan’s world wide political system.

    The scarlet colored beast is the same as the image. The harlot, as you point out, started in Babel or Babylon centuries ago. But instead of representing a single religion represents Satan’s worldwide false religious organizations that he has like wise built up over the centuries and that has worked with the political part to mislead mankind (2Cor 4:3-4; Rev 12:9).

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  4. I was so excited when I read your blog! I came to almost the same conclusions as you about 3 weeks ago! I have similar penciled comments in the sides of my bible, except not as historically detailed as you (history is a weak point for me!) I also see Zionism (which is a movement of interests in both the "pseudo-jews" and the "pseudo-evangelical" Christians' camps) as a political agenda under the guise of a religious one as you do.
    The only part that I disagree with you on is the RC Church/Christian denominations as the Harlot. Remember, Babylon is a PAGAN religion which is key here. I see more ties to the New Age religion / UFO phenomena as the pseudo religion, although all the kinks in my thinking have not fully been resolved. Remember, if you research the "UFO" phenomena, especially the pompous stuff by Dr. Steven Greer, you can't help but draw the conclusion that the orbs that they "conjure" up are NOT UFOs but rather demons. Remember, Satan's deception is a key theme in the Book of Revelations.
    If you do further research on the whole UFO phenomena, you'll also notice it is tied into supra-high technology of the military-industrial complex. Satan is a preternatural spirit who can take whatever earthly mass God has created and use it for his own twisted purposes.
    It is still a work in progress, and I am still researching, but I wouldn't be surprised if the so-called grays and reptoids that people witnessed are actually demons in disguise or some DNA-twisted humanoids that the demons possess bodily. They may have teamed up with the MI complex underground, giving the MI secret technology to build anti-gravity aircraft (which seems to be the case with all the military vets coming out lately with all these UFO reports.) And there is probably HAARP-like technology/halographic technology by the demon-MI complex that can fool the public into thinking that 3-D images are real, i.e., the IMAGE OF THE BEAST. For all we know, the demon-aliens themselves may come "out of hiding" and shock the public into submission to the anti-christ forces. The key, again, is DECEPTION by Satan: aliens and supra-technology. Also remember that some of the elite are into Satanism- so I wouldn't be surprised if there is a link here. That Dr. Greer is an atheist and has become so duped by satanic phenomenon that that represents the other side of the same satanist coin. So you got the satanists and the elite atheists/new agers doing satan's bidding in the end times. So many people have lost their religious compass that they'll believe in anything.
    I can't believe I am actually writing all the above: it still seems so far-fetched to me, yet there is something to it--something is going on in this regard. Maybe you can help fill in those gaps.
    Thanks for your thoughts. They validate mine.

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  5. Hi Lori; thanks for your thoughtful remarks. You state: "Remember, Babylon is a PAGAN religion which is key here." In response, I say: Remember, Babylon represents ALL false religion- whether it pretends to be Godly or not. That is why John was so appalled when he saw the harlot in Ch. 17... after he had seen the glorious woman 'clothed with the sun' in Ch. 12 (who was clearly the pure, original church). She had now morphed into the great, drunken prostitute/pretender... just as happened, historically.
    As for ETs, greys, UFOs, etc., I have done much study on this subject, too; and I basically agree with you. However, it is clear to me that scripture does not specifically talk about such things. The Bible warns us about demons vs angels, about 'the powers of the air' (Eph 6:12) etc. But the broad outlines of human history that are presented in prophecy do not include reference to alien invasion. If I had to speculate, I'd say that God's forces must be constraining those aliens/demons so that they can't overly influence the events playing out on this planet.
    Blessings on you and yours.

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  6. I think you may be right, John. I suppose a part of me hopes the Church as an institution would remain faithful; but as Jesus says, where 2 or 3 are gathered in his name, he will be in their midst. He promised he would never abandon his true church, even if it shrinks to a remnant!

    I also had another thought based on your logic of who/what 666 represents. I thought your idea of Israel being named after a man was very perceptive. I also want to add to it: suppose we include Israel AND the USA as Israel-USA-666 since USA was also named after a man: Amerigo. What do you think? I also inputted IsraelAmeria (minus the "c" in Christ) in a 666 calculator online and it added up to 666! I know it is a long shot, but at least it's a start. What do you say?

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  7. Frankly, Lori, I don't think there's any scriptural evidence to support the idea you propose-- it's far too contrived. Many Roman emperors (among others) took names that 'equalled' 666; it was fashionable. While 7 is God's no., 6 'falls short.' Consider that humans consist of body, soul (mind), and spirit; 3 elements that can never equal God's.

    I think people make too much of the '666' because it seems like a coded puzzle. But, this number clue cannot stand on its own; it has to be seen in concert with the other clues provided. That's my present view on it.

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