What is the mark of the beast?

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Jeremy

Puritan Board Freshman
What is the mark of the beast?

I have considered many possibilities over the years, from microchips to false religion.

Lend me the truth please!

-J
 
The mark of God in Deut. 4-6 requires one to have the law of God on their forhead and hand (obviously metaphorically speaking). The Beast (ie, the Totalitarian state) requires one to have a different law code (ie, different moral standard, different God) to live by.
 
Originally posted by Draught Horse
The mark of God in Deut. 4-6 requires one to have the law of God on their forhead and hand (obviously metaphorically speaking). The Beast (ie, the Totalitarian state) requires one to have a different law code (ie, different moral standard, different God) to live by.

I have considered that as well. But how do you reconcile that idea with Rev. 13:17?
 
Originally posted by Jeremy
Originally posted by Draught Horse
The mark of God in Deut. 4-6 requires one to have the law of God on their forhead and hand (obviously metaphorically speaking). The Beast (ie, the Totalitarian state) requires one to have a different law code (ie, different moral standard, different God) to live by.

I have considered that as well. But how do you reconcile that idea with Rev. 13:17?

As a partial-preterist I see the initial thrust of that passage applying to the first century. However, to answer your question: I see no tension there at all. In many non-Western countries humanism is seeking to stamp out Christianity. In doing so they deprive it of financial rights, etc.
 
I can't say that I know much about it, but there is something about the number six that I think a lot of people miss. Its the first number for which all its parts add up to it. That is, all those whole numbers that can be divided into six, except itself, are 1, 2, and 3, which add up to six. So it is considered a complete or perfect number. The number 7 is attributed to God to show that He is above the perfection of creation. He would be perfection plus one, because He is the originator of perfection; or to say it differently, perfection finds its satisfaction in Him alone.

The mark of the beast will be one of those demonstrations which will fool the entire world, and even the elect if it were possible. He will show signs and wonders which will convince many, even though it will be accompanied by evil. For he will demand worship which belongs only to God. So his mark will not only be six, but 'six six six'.

I put this in contrast to 'holy, holy, holy', which is a completely different thing. Its like "All women are humans, but not all humans are women." In God all things are perfect, but not everything that appears perfect is in God. And that will be the difference: appearances. It will appear logical, it will appear inevitable, it will appear as the only choice, but it will not appear holy. That, as I understand it, will be the mark of the beast. That's what people will be wearing on their foreheads and hands, in contrast to the mark that God's people will have on their foreheads and hands.

Revelation is about judgment, about the future and past rolled into one, and about the whole of human history right up to the end. Without knowing the precise history of the end it is impossible to know how to interpret Revelation. We can glean some doctrine from it, but some things will remain a mystery until Christ comes to judge the living and the dead. For me its enough to know that God is holy holy holy, (Ps. 99), and that many people and powers will strive to overrule God from now until the end, and not to be taken in by it through prayer and watchfulness.
 
Originally posted by JohnV
I can't say that I know much about it, but there is something about the number six that I think a lot of people miss. Its the first number for which all its parts add up to it. That is, all those whole numbers that can be divided into six, except itself, are 1, 2, and 3, which add up to six. So it is considered a complete or perfect number. The number 7 is attributed to God to show that He is above the perfection of creation. He would be perfection plus one, because He is the originator of perfection; or to say it differently, perfection finds its satisfaction in Him alone.

The mark of the beast will be one of those demonstrations which will fool the entire world, and even the elect if it were possible. He will show signs and wonders which will convince many, even though it will be accompanied by evil. For he will demand worship which belongs only to God. So his mark will not only be six, but 'six six six'.

I put this in contrast to 'holy, holy, holy', which is a completely different thing. Its like "All women are humans, but not all humans are women." In God all things are perfect, but not everything that appears perfect is in God. And that will be the difference: appearances. It will appear logical, it will appear inevitable, it will appear as the only choice, but it will not appear holy. That, as I understand it, will be the mark of the beast. That's what people will be wearing on their foreheads and hands, in contrast to the mark that God's people will have on their foreheads and hands.

Revelation is about judgment, about the future and past rolled into one, and about the whole of human history right up to the end. Without knowing the precise history of the end it is impossible to know how to interpret Revelation. We can glean some doctrine from it, but some things will remain a mystery until Christ comes to judge the living and the dead. For me its enough to know that God is holy holy holy, (Ps. 99), and that many people and powers will strive to overrule God from now until the end, and not to be taken in by it through prayer and watchfulness.

That kind of falls apart when you consider that the number is not 6-6-6, but Six-hundred, sixty six.
 
While I will go with Gabe's route, John is right to bring up 666. If I am correct--and I don't have my greek text on me (and if I am not etymologically correct my point still stands)--the number has a hissing sound to it. This brings to mind the Cosmic warfare between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent. Add to the fact that the Dragon is mentioned throughout Revelation.

Also, we have dragon-imagery throughout the bible (think Leviathan). Modern translators and commentators try to play down this aspect. Reason: They have taken their epistemological cue from the enlightenment. Having been told by unbelievers what they can and can't believe about reality, they translate it to "crocodile" and not "dragon."

Thesis: The cosmic warfare often takes form between a devout minorite versus the Totalitarian State.

Test Case: David vs. Goliath. Goliath, as any good representative of State Worship, mocked the Lord of Hosts. Furthermore, he is dressed in Scale Armor. He is a type of the Dragon. He dies.

Further evidence: Moloch is related to Melek--the hebrew word for king. Moloch worship is state worship. Even today we give our children to the government hoping to receive salvation from the state. We allow the state to educate our children in the name of pagan humaism. We even sacrifice our chidlren to the State.
 
Originally posted by WrittenFromUtopia

That kind of falls apart when you consider that the number is not 6-6-6, but Six-hundred, sixty six.

No, Gabriel, it falls apart when you consider it comes from me.

We'd have to look up the Greek here, I suppose, as Jacob calls for. In the English language it is always good form to write out the numbers that than putting their numerical symbols down. That rule is not followed in our day, and so we get a mix of things in our versions. I'm not really sure what the Greek rule is here. But Six Hundred and Sixty Six is 666, or six, six, six. No matter how you put it, the symbolism is still there.

Jacob:

I think we need to be on the lookout for things that fool us. The devil will come to us with blue eyes and blue jeans, not in flaming red with horns. He won't fool many that way. And it will be to fool those that are elect that he will manifest himself. He won't have to fool those that are already in his power, deceived or deceiving. I think we have been seeing this all along in church history, with all the Christian-like religions that have sprung up since the earliest times of church history. All the old heresies keep coming back. Its not like some of the diseases that have been wiped out through vaccine; these keep coming back. They just have different slants to them today.

And there are new ones that show up too. I remember the days when Katherine Coleman (or something like that) was all the rage. And even today some of our steady faithful go to people like that when they are faced with a family member with a terminal illness. She posed a lot of danger to the churches, and even our staunch church lost a couple through that.

I think it'll only get stronger; or maybe the Reformed will only get weaker.

[Edited on 10-3-2005 by JohnV]
 
JohnV:
Perhaps. While I fully expect a horned dragon to appear, I recognize the symbolism involved. Unregenerate (and compromising Christian) man worships the state. He finds his source of meaning in the state. His ultimacy is the Law-word of the state. In applying the 666 the State is requiring all men to live by his law-code; man is now to find meaning and ultimacy only in the Will of the State. This is worshipping the beast.

God says whoever worships the beast goes to hell.
God requires us to live by his law-word, not the state's. We are to oppose the State's law-word with all our might.
Yes, the state will grow more savage in its warfare. This would appear to bode the end of the Christian people. However, humanism by definition cuts its own throat. It cannot sustain a long-term engagement against my people.

Dr Rushdoony powerfully taught us:History has never been dominated by majorities, but only by dedicated remnants who stand unconditionally on their faith."

My people win by definition.
 
But how does a state manifest itself to its constituency? Is it not by appeal to higher standards? Doesn't it try to explain its dogmas by trying to show itself to better than the alternative? I know, to you and I it fails hands down. But its broad appeal engulfs even those that oppose it in theory. Look at Canada. Most people are NOT homosexual, nor are sympathetic to their lifestyle. But they'll vote for the government that has instituted homosexual marriage into the constitution, simply because they are caught (I should say, ensnared) in the arguments. They look at the tunnel vision of the Christians, the judgmental mentality, the ones that murder doctors who perform abortions, and so on and so on, whether or not it applies, and they prefer the better morality of the government. The government panders to the immorality of the people, all the while making prey of them.

What they are doing is making themselves look better. I think we haven't seen the best of that yet. Not only will there be more convincing Katherine Colemans, but there will be a more overt attempt to make Christianity look like perverted morality. The use of the law will wane as the signs and wonders increase. But there won't be any hint of true holiness in those signs and wonders. And that will be our hallmark, not only in worship, but in life and godliness.

But I can see your point: there will come a time when people will welcome a fire-breathing dragon rather than bend the knee to the inevitable coming Christ.
 
I agree with the heart of what you are saying and I know what you are getting at. I maintain that those onthe other side of the antithesis are worshipping and acting according to their own religion--humanism--the worship of Man.

That explains the California scenario.
 
The material of an ex Roman Catholic priest who knows a lot about the subject of the beast and frankly hits the nail on the head can be found on this site...

www.bereanbeacon.org

The truth seems to lie in the area of worship, or a false religion, considering the context. We ought to take at face value that those on earth won't be able to buy or sell unless they have the mark. But we have to go deeper to find out what the mark itself is.
The context is worship in view of the preceding texts. And what creature has desired more than anything to be worshipped since the beginning of creation? Satan has been manipulating unbelievers into inadvertenly worshipping him through false religions since the beginning of time, starting with Cain, using men as puppets (i.e. the pope). When anyone but God is worshipped, Satan claims the glory for himself (But God will have all glory in his damnation).
If you look at Rev. 13:2 we see the dragon is behind it all. So the other beast causes everyone on earth to worship the 1st (Rev.13:12) which is what Satan is after. Naturally he will have to set up an idol for them to worship as it says in Rev.13:14-15. There will come a time when this government regulated religion will impose death on those who don't worship the image. Isn't that the track record of history. Monarchs throughout the ages have tried to force a world religion. But this prophecy will be the mother of them all. Whatever this religion may be, whether it be Catholicism or not, I don't know; the one world government that is now being sought after will impose this false religion on the world. I would estimate that this false religion will appear under the name Christianity if it is to nearly fool the elect.

The 666 seems to imply a man-centered worship, since 6 is the number of man. Seems as though that's already happening, wouldn't you say?

Well, enough said. What be your replies?
 
I agree with the thrust of the quote, except I don't see the Pope as being the beast. Honestly, I think he lacks and always will lack that power.

Secondly, the one world government is given too much credit (make no mistake--their are satanic conspirators out there) for being too powerful. The promises of Psalm two reiterated in Revelation 2 guarrantee their total destruction within the space-time cosmos.
 
Originally posted by Draught Horse
I agree with the thrust of the quote, except I don't see the Pope as being the beast. Honestly, I think he lacks and always will lack that power.

Secondly, the one world government is given too much credit (make no mistake--their are satanic conspirators out there) for being too powerful. The promises of Psalm two reiterated in Revelation 2 guarrantee their total destruction within the space-time cosmos.

Don't forget that Satan is quoted by Christ as "the god of this world". Not that Satan is anything compared to the Holy One of Israel. But in Rev. 13:2 it says the dragon gave the beast "power, and his seat, and great authority."

Concerning the Papacy, check out Rev. Ch. 17 (especially verses 4,5,6 and 9)

Purple and scarlet (Official colors of the Church as of the middle of last century)
Gold and precious stones and pearls (Self-explanatory)
Golden cup in her hand (see below)

About verse 6, consider the inquisition when the Catholic church martyred the saints.

Consider the titles the Pope usurps: Most Holy Father, Vicar of Christ, etc...If these are not names of blasphemy for a man to take them, nothing is. The golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication could be the indulgences and masses, etc. I mean, is it possible for another institution to fulfill these prophecies better. Why are these prophecies always off in distance, involving futuristic scenarios that can never be documented? That approach blunts the sword of Biblical prophecy.

-J
 
Jeremy, if we could identify what the image of the beast is, we would immediately know what the mark is ... because all of its followers display that mark on their right hand.

The victors (of understanding) over the image, mark and number sing the Song of Moses and the Song of the Lamb. Rev 15:3.

The following excerpts are from my unpublished booklet.
Most of these findings regarding the image mark and number were known during the period 1980-83 but God, as it were, kept a muzzle on me.

Who will believe my report? Likely very few.

Some look to the PAST regarding the interpretation of prophecy ... a preterist. Some look to the FUTURE regarding the interpretation ... a futurist.

It is my hope that those that look to the past and present will understand.

In order for our claims for Revelation 13 to be accepted by fellow believers, one has to present scriptural and logical explanations that will interconnect the following:

The False Prophet and his association with the numbered beast.
The speaking "image" and its connection to the FP and the numbered beast.
The mark on right hand and its connection to all the above.

We can speculate as to what the mark may be, or who the False Prophet is, or the numbered beast, but if there is no scriptural interconnection, it is just that ... speculation.

Over time, I hope to show this connection by identifying the False Prophet, the numbered beast, the mark and the speaking image that has "life".

I would like to start with the hyper-literal interpretation of a futurist regarding the FP making an image of the beast that died by a mortal wound yet had "life", followed by my less sensational, but more logical and understandable explanation.

And I saw ONE of his heads as it were wounded to death, and his deadly wound was healed; and all the world wondered after the beast. Rev 13:3.

And he exerciseth all the power of the beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast whose deadly wound was healed. Rev 13:12.

And he had power to give LIFE unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. Rev 13:15.
(see Foxe's Book of Martyrs)

A futurist professor, J Dwight Pentecost Dallas Theological College had this to say about the false prophet and the image that could speak:

"Now I don't profess to be able to explain to you how this false prophet can make this image of the beast speak, whether he does it electronically, or by ventriloquism or by some Satanic marvel, but I know that here is something so awesome that when the world sees this dead and lifeless image begin to give commands, they fall down before it as though it had come from Almighty God Himself".

So much for hyper-literal sensationalism of prophetic interpretation.

Sir Isaac Newton, scientist and very serious student of prophecy had this to say:

"If God was so angry with the Jews for not searching more diligently into the prophecies which He had given them to know Christ by, why should we think He will excuse us for not searching into the prophecies which He hath given us to know Antichrist by?"

Newton had no doubts as to the identity of Antichrist and the Whore of Babylon ... that is, the Church of Rome and its pope.

In Newton's mind, the task of the scholar was to show that biblical prophecies had been fulfilled in historical events. One could know, however, only AFTER the event, and it was not for the student of prophecy to become a prophet ... until the event occurred, the prophecies pertaining to it could well remain obscure. This was an important point for Newton ... all would become clear in due course

The interpretation ... the false prophet creates an image that has life and can speak

Each pope is considered to be ... "Peter".

When pope Paul VI addressed the United Nations he said ... "Do you know who I am? My name is "Peter"

Vatican dogma declares its pope to be the IMAGE of Peter.
The only person that Jesus called "Satan" (other than Satan himself) was Peter. Matthew 16:23.

When "ONE OF ITS HEADS DIES" (Rev 13:3) the Vatican through its College of Cardinals "creates" an image of the previous "Peter" ... ie the previous pope that died by a mortal wound.

The interpretation ... The Vatican is the False Prophet.

The word "vatic" means "prophet"

Vatic = prophet = Vatican = False Prophet.

By the required 2/3 vote (66.6%) of the 111 cardinals present in the case of John Paul The Second, he became their new "image of Peter" and this is how John of the Revelation describes the (not so mysterious) image that has "life" and a "mouth". Rev 13:15.

By the way, the word "Peter" that Jesus "added" to Simon indicates the meaning ... to count or calculate ... small stones were used for that purpose.

My explanation for these things does not require rocket science knowledge, nor is it sensationalism as some prophecy "experts" would have us believe. Most of those experts continue to make their predictions as "future events" and are therefore unaccountable for their hyper-literal claims, because those things never seem to come to pass.

I have to give evidence to support my claim now ... I hope I have done so.

Post 2 ... to be continued ... the "mark" of the beast.

Jeremy, I will be leaving soon for Nebraska till around the 20th of October, but you likely have figured out what the mark is ... or will, before I get back

calvin
 
Gabriel and Jacob,
I'm surprised that neither of you have mentioned Gentry's take on 666, i.e. that it is a numerical representative of the Hebrew for Kaiser Neron.

[Edited on 10-3-2005 by SharperSword]
 
Originally posted by Draught Horse
I agree with the thrust of the quote, except I don't see the Pope as being the beast. Honestly, I think he lacks and always will lack that power.

Secondly, the one world government is given too much credit (make no mistake--their are satanic conspirators out there) for being too powerful. The promises of Psalm two reiterated in Revelation 2 guarrantee their total destruction within the space-time cosmos.

I'd be inclined to agree with you about the pope, Jacob. Back at the time the Reformation the Popish church was the world-wide church, having jurisidiction even over emporers and kings. Their power was immense by today's standards. I can well appreciate the Reformers impulse to call the pope the antichrist, and to see the kingdom of that church as the kingdom of the devil. But I don't see them holding that kind of power anymore. The latest pope will spell the end of any hint of orthodoxy in the RCC. His ultra stance will be more of a counterpoint to bolster the reactionary forces into firmer action, I think. I already see it happening in this morning's newpaper, where the pope is called inhuman by a writer, for ruling homosexuals out for ordination. Its the beginning of the end for the old RCC. At least, that's what I think is going to happen.

I don't agree with your interpretation of Psalm 2, though. I don't put too much stock in these world government scenarios either. I heard of one professor of philosophy who began his class with two questions (this was back when Quebec was making motions to separate and form their own independent government. ) His first question was a show of hands for those who supported world government as a solution for world peace, to which he received an overwhelmingly positive response. Then he asked them who favoured Quebec having the right to rule themselves? Again he got an overwhelming positive response. Then he noted to them the contradiction. Well, I don't think that politicians are much smarter than those philosophy students. I think that modern trends to unity will only lead to war, not peace. There's just too much at stake for countries to give up with the economic base the way it now is, even if they're going to lose it all anyways. I tend to think more in terms of collapse than solidarity. But all the same, its not because they revere God that they are snubbing world government; its because of selfish ambitions.

A Dispensationalist once asked me about what I thought of the mid-east situation, whether it boded well for the return of Christ. But I only asked him to show me where there was a mass turning to Christ in that area of the world, and he could not even list the ones that really are happening there. Yes, there is a recognition of Christ as the Son of God, and some are even Reformed, but it is far from a nationwide return to God. I think that consideration outweighs any notion of Jews gathering in Palestine, no matter how many there may be, or what wars they are winning.

As a Presuppositionalist, though, you should be recognizing that Christ has them all in derision today, even the most powerful of the principalities that now exist. Their arguments and proofs fall to the ground when placed against the simple and irresistible force of the Bible's truth. That's been the case throughout history, and is so today. Its you and I that see it, but not those that want the lie to be true. They refuse and suppress the truth; its not that the truth is insufficient to convince. So I see Psalm 2 as fulfilled, being fulfilled today, and is yet to be fulfilled until Christ returns.

But again, that is my opinion; which holds about as much water as bluejeans tied at the pantlegs' bottoms.
 
Sure thing, John. I like your example about the Quebec scenario.

Calvin: What is the time-referent in Revelation (ie, 1:3-4)?

SharperSword: I agree with Gentry's take on it, but most people don't take him seriosuly (which is a far different thing from refuting his arguments), so I don't bother with it. Also, I think the case can be made from other angles.

[Edited on 10--3-05 by Draught Horse]
 
Originally posted by Draught Horse
Originally posted by WrittenFromUtopia
I'll talk about Revelation once Gentry finishes his commentary.

Oh, did that go through? Is he starting it?

He is trying to raise enough money so that he can take a sabbattical and finish it. See his website.

In related news, DeMar stated on his blog (www.americanvision.org) today that he is working on a book called "Why The Rapture Won't Happen" or something similar to that. I can't wait.
 
why the rapture wouldn't happen hehehehehe such a condescending title.

It should be, "Is there a rapture or not"? That way he can actually get the hardcore Dispensationalists to read it.
 
Originally posted by Calvin Cormier
Jeremy, if we could identify what the image of the beast is, we would immediately know what the mark is ... because all of its followers display that mark on their right hand.

The victors (of understanding) over the image, mark and number sing the Song of Moses and the Song of the Lamb. Rev 15:3.

The following excerpts are from my unpublished booklet.
Most of these findings regarding the image mark and number were known during the period 1980-83 but God, as it were, kept a muzzle on me.

Who will believe my report? Likely very few.

Some look to the PAST regarding the interpretation of prophecy ... a preterist. Some look to the FUTURE regarding the interpretation ... a futurist.

It is my hope that those that look to the past and present will understand.

In order for our claims for Revelation 13 to be accepted by fellow believers, one has to present scriptural and logical explanations that will interconnect the following:

The False Prophet and his association with the numbered beast.
The speaking "image" and its connection to the FP and the numbered beast.
The mark on right hand and its connection to all the above.

We can speculate as to what the mark may be, or who the False Prophet is, or the numbered beast, but if there is no scriptural interconnection, it is just that ... speculation.

Over time, I hope to show this connection by identifying the False Prophet, the numbered beast, the mark and the speaking image that has "life".

I would like to start with the hyper-literal interpretation of a futurist regarding the FP making an image of the beast that died by a mortal wound yet had "life", followed by my less sensational, but more logical and understandable explanation.

And I saw ONE of his heads as it were wounded to death, and his deadly wound was healed; and all the world wondered after the beast. Rev 13:3.

And he exerciseth all the power of the beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast whose deadly wound was healed. Rev 13:12.

And he had power to give LIFE unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. Rev 13:15.
(see Foxe's Book of Martyrs)

A futurist professor, J Dwight Pentecost Dallas Theological College had this to say about the false prophet and the image that could speak:

"Now I don't profess to be able to explain to you how this false prophet can make this image of the beast speak, whether he does it electronically, or by ventriloquism or by some Satanic marvel, but I know that here is something so awesome that when the world sees this dead and lifeless image begin to give commands, they fall down before it as though it had come from Almighty God Himself".

So much for hyper-literal sensationalism of prophetic interpretation.

Sir Isaac Newton, scientist and very serious student of prophecy had this to say:

"If God was so angry with the Jews for not searching more diligently into the prophecies which He had given them to know Christ by, why should we think He will excuse us for not searching into the prophecies which He hath given us to know Antichrist by?"

Newton had no doubts as to the identity of Antichrist and the Whore of Babylon ... that is, the Church of Rome and its pope.

In Newton's mind, the task of the scholar was to show that biblical prophecies had been fulfilled in historical events. One could know, however, only AFTER the event, and it was not for the student of prophecy to become a prophet ... until the event occurred, the prophecies pertaining to it could well remain obscure. This was an important point for Newton ... all would become clear in due course

The interpretation ... the false prophet creates an image that has life and can speak

Each pope is considered to be ... "Peter".

When pope Paul VI addressed the United Nations he said ... "Do you know who I am? My name is "Peter"

Vatican dogma declares its pope to be the IMAGE of Peter.
The only person that Jesus called "Satan" (other than Satan himself) was Peter. Matthew 16:23.

When "ONE OF ITS HEADS DIES" (Rev 13:3) the Vatican through its College of Cardinals "creates" an image of the previous "Peter" ... ie the previous pope that died by a mortal wound.

The interpretation ... The Vatican is the False Prophet.

The word "vatic" means "prophet"

Vatic = prophet = Vatican = False Prophet.

By the required 2/3 vote (66.6%) of the 111 cardinals present in the case of John Paul The Second, he became their new "image of Peter" and this is how John of the Revelation describes the (not so mysterious) image that has "life" and a "mouth". Rev 13:15.

By the way, the word "Peter" that Jesus "added" to Simon indicates the meaning ... to count or calculate ... small stones were used for that purpose.

My explanation for these things does not require rocket science knowledge, nor is it sensationalism as some prophecy "experts" would have us believe. Most of those experts continue to make their predictions as "future events" and are therefore unaccountable for their hyper-literal claims, because those things never seem to come to pass.

I have to give evidence to support my claim now ... I hope I have done so.

Post 2 ... to be continued ... the "mark" of the beast.

Jeremy, I will be leaving soon for Nebraska till around the 20th of October, but you likely have figured out what the mark is ... or will, before I get back

calvin


Interesting points. Glad to see someone else notices the R.C. Church for what it is. Didn't understand your quotes at first because I was in a hurry to do something else around the house. We just need to be careful to remember that no prophecy of scripture is of any private interpretation

My interpration of Rev. 13 is shared by more than myself. See www.bereanbeacon.org

Go to articles and audio, you'll find some good stuff.

The only problem when people continually seek futuristic scenarios for the fulfillment of prophecy is that it subtly ignores the fact that certain prophecies may have already been fulfilled. Aren't the Jewish people still looking for the Messiah?

I find it hard to believe that God did not speak in scripture about some of the things that have happened over the past 2000 yrs.

When it comes to the Catholic church having to do with these prophecies, we shouldn't look for them to wield some sort of power beyond what they have. What I mean is this. Satan is concerned about souls. How many people on the face of this earth think they are Christians when they have actually been worshipping idols? So this is mostly spiritual warfare we are concerned with here, unlike these Armageddon movies that involve more tangible example of war and machines etc.

Concerning the image that speaks and has life, look at the things around us today that could be the fulfillment of it. Think of the Jesus Film Project. It's very popular in many evangelical churches, but the 2nd commandment hasn't changed. That movement has swept all over the world, but it doesn't change the fact that it's idolatry. If one has wisdom, they will see that the church is moving towards an image driven message and the Word is being slowly filtered out. I would say that Satan is a better chess player than our modern experts on prophecy. He's subtly trying to tear the church apart through compromise. He's already got the world. Good thing no one can snatch the true believers out of the Father's hand.

Think also about the pictures we're using to teach children about Jesus. I don't think so. May God forgive our wickedness!

More later!

-J

[Edited on 10-4-2005 by Jeremy]
 
What I find interesting is that a Postmillennialist - I mean a hyper-Postmillennialist - once preached about how necessary it was to take the kingdom now, and that it was other Christians, ones like myself who were Amillennialists - pessimillennialists he called it - who were antagonisitic to Christ's kingdom. I think I used his terminology here, but just shortened it for brevity's sake. Anyways, I was impressed that the more he jumped up an down about his ultra view the more that Amillennialism proved true at his expense. I mean, Amillennialists believe they will be persecuted for Christ's sake, and that they will be trodden upon for their faith. Well, he was doing just that. We will face opposition, even in our own churches, and he was doing that too. I was even told that I was a sinner for being Amillennialist. I hadn't done anything wrong that he could charge me with, it was just that I was an Amillennialist.

Well, this is just a short story to show that when we start to proclaim what the end it going to be like, we are actually proving the opposite, that we don't know anything at all. When someone claims to know, I know enough to tune out, because that right there is an admission of ignorance. How can any one of us know the future without God revealing it to us? Either we're cllaiming special revelation, or we're making things up out of our own heads. There are just too many variables to knowing even the most certain things for the future. Everyone expected the USSR to fall, but who could have predicted such a fall? And at that time? We all know that immorality will bring our nations down too, but we have no idea of the what and how of it; what major event will precipitate it, and why properity still grows in the meantime?

The short of it is, the more one millennial view takes the initiative to make predictions, the more it makes the other views look true. That's what I've noticed about these end-times scenarios.
 
Originally posted by JohnV
What I find interesting is that a Postmillennialist - I mean a hyper-Postmillennialist - once preached about how necessary it was to take the kingdom now, and that it was other Christians, ones like myself who were Amillennialists - pessimillennialists he called it - who were antagonisitic to Christ's kingdom. I think I used his terminology here, but just shortened it for brevity's sake. Anyways, I was impressed that the more he jumped up an down about his ultra view the more that Amillennialism proved true at his expense. I mean, Amillennialists believe they will be persecuted for Christ's sake, and that they will be trodden upon for their faith. Well, he was doing just that. We will face opposition, even in our own churches, and he was doing that too. I was even told that I was a sinner for being Amillennialist. I hadn't done anything wrong that he could charge me with, it was just that I was an Amillennialist.

Well, this is just a short story to show that when we start to proclaim what the end it going to be like, we are actually proving the opposite, that we don't know anything at all. When someone claims to know, I know enough to tune out, because that right there is an admission of ignorance. How can any one of us know the future without God revealing it to us? Either we're cllaiming special revelation, or we're making things up out of our own heads. There are just too many variables to knowing even the most certain things for the future. Everyone expected the USSR to fall, but who could have predicted such a fall? And at that time? We all know that immorality will bring our nations down too, but we have no idea of the what and how of it; what major event will precipitate it, and why properity still grows in the meantime?

The short of it is, the more one millennial view takes the initiative to make predictions, the more it makes the other views look true. That's what I've noticed about these end-times scenarios.


Not to be disrespectful, but you seem to be quite opinionated rather than trying to find out "What saith the Lord". Regardless of what our opinions are or what expert has written the latest book for $$$$, the truth is the truth. For some reason, it seems as though too many Christians today come at the Bible with an "I feel" attitude (including me) rather than coming together with clean hearts and hands to find wisdom from God Himself.

Now what I had said was speculation as well, but there comes a point when we have to ask ourselves what the text actually does mean. That's what I'm trying to do. Is it wrong for us to say that Isaiah 53 is a prophecy about Jesus Christ? The majority of the Jewish people today will tell you that's wrong.

See what I mean?

We can know in vague terms as to the basic spiritual connotations of prophecies in Revelation, but you're right, none of us should be pointing to newpaper articles in Sunday's paper saying, "This is Rev. 13:16".

But since God deemed it important enough to give us these prophecies in Revelation, we need to be seeking the Lord's face concerning their interpretations. We are no longer under a reign of prophecy that is shut up to our understanding, because God told John not to seal the sayings of Revelation for the time was at hand. Rev. 22:10

On the other hand, he told Daniel to shut the prophecies up until the time of the end (Daniel 12:4). And if God told John not to shut them up, then that was the beginning of the end. Hence with God's help we should be able to understand the scriptures.

-J
 
You're right about me, I am too opinionated. I meant no disrespect. I related an observation, one that I could document if I were trailing people to catch them in their words.

I am not opposed to finding out what the meanings of texts are. But we have to respect the fact that predictive aptitude goes only so far. I could not really relate to you what the fifties and sixties were really like, but that doesn't mean that you can't know the history. How much more cloudy is the future? If the predictions of Scripture are true, which I am sure they are, then they will be true to the time at which they are fulfilled. That means that if it came true today it would be far different than if it came true hundreds of years from now. The whole world situation will be changed, and the particulars which are symbolically represented will have far different connotations then. Look how different it is now from the time of the Reformation. But even the most orthodox of the members of the Westminster Assembly thought the pope was the antichrist at the time. World War II made it look altogether different again. And then we had the cold war, and now we have an uneasy peace, not knowing who or where the enemy is, but who is present all the same: they can blow up our buildings at any time. We just don't know what the future history of the world will be, but it will impact how we understand these texts.

Having said all that, there are invariables too. And you are right that we should be clear on them. There should be no dilly-dallying around about those truths. But they should not in the slightest depend upon our speculative surmizings. I was commenting on someone who stood on his opinion as if it were the gospel, and only showing his ignorance that way. Finding the meaning of Scripture is a far different thing than assuming some kind of authority for our speculations in the Bible.

[Edited on 10-4-2005 by JohnV]
 
Calvin, thanks for your post. While I disagree with the particulars of your interpretation of Rev 13, I believe the principle of interpretation you employ is the correct biblical method. The book of Revelation is traditionally divided into 3 sections based on 1:19 (1) "things which thou hast seen" the visions John received of the Son, the candlestick, etc. (2) things that are - the 7 churches (3) and things which shall be. The third part takes place in the sealed book. The sealed book represents the secret decrees of God to the end of the world. From the 1st verse we understand that the events revealed by the opening of the seals begin shortly after the writing of the apocalypse. The sealed book was future history of the entire last days (the NT era), we do it injustice by limiting the scope of its prophecies to one short time period. Aditionally, Partial preterism is inconsistent by, as a rule, constraining Revelation to the 1st century but then jumping to the end of the world for the application of a few passages. Finally, preterism is refuted from the first verse of Revelation. John saw visions of futurity, not the past which Jewish War was by the time Revelation was written, viz. the late reign of Domitian according to the early 2nd century patristic Irenaeus. Like preterism historicism ties prophecy to actual events in history, connecting christianity to the social concerns of the real world, and also, not forever frozen in fear of always imminent literal fulfilment of obviously symbolic prophecies. But Historicism is preterism without any artificial time restraints.
 
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