Satan Evicted: Study Framework

The animal with the ten horns and the animal with the lamb horns, c. 1530-1532, Ottheinrich Bible

Study Overview

Definitions First
Things You May Not Know
Christians Will Face Persecution
Three Dimensional Prophecies
The Book of Revelation
Daniel’s 70th Week
The Olivet Discourse
A Fictional Narrative

In any work of substantial length and depth, the details have a tendency to obscure the overall picture, “You can’t see the forest for the trees.” In order to address this difficulty, this section paints an overall portrait using a variety of views. Scriptural and supporting evidence are provided elsewhere within the study text.

Questions, concerns, comments, and rebuttals are encouraged and emailed to mail@satan-evicted.com.

Definitions First

Most scholars force their discussions on “end time” prophecy to conform to a single seven year period referred to as Daniel’s 70th Week. Under such forced conformity, a distorted and misleading picture emerges. Unfortunately, the events related to the Christian Church do not fit within such a timeframe… events begin prior to the confirms a “covenant with many” and events end prior to the physical return of Jesus Christ to establish His Millennial Kingdom.

There is a difference between the Great Tribulation, the Wrath of God, Daniel’s 70th Week, and the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. Treating these four distinct periods as if they were a single, unified period leads to great confusion and misunderstanding. The transition from the current Church Age to the future Millennial Age involves both the Christian Church and the remnant of Israel. While they overlap and sometimes share common traits, these periods are not identical nor should their labels be used as synonyms. Understanding these difference helps bring the events and relationships into sharper focus:

Explanation of the Events within the Table

  • Transition from Church to Millennial Age: The time period spanning from the transfer of the scroll with seven seals from the Father to the Son until Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.
  • The Great Tribulation of the Church: The time period spanning from the breaking of the 1st Seal (removal of the “restrainer”) until the Rapture of the Christian Church at the breaking of the 6th Seal.
  • The Christian Church in Heaven: The time period spanning from the Rapture of the Christian Church until Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.
  • Daniel’s 70th Week: The time period spanning from the making of the covenant between the Antichrist and “the many” until Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.
  • 1st Half of the Week (3 ½ Years): The time period spanning from the making of the covenant between the Antichrist and “the many” until the Antichrist sets up the Abomination of Desolation.
  • 2nd Half of the Week (3 ½ Years): The time period spanning from the Antichrist sets up the Abomination of Desolation Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.
  • Time of Jacob’s Trouble: The time period spanning from the Antichrist and his armies surrounding Jerusalem until Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.
  • The Wrath of God: The time period spanning from the Rapture of the Christian Church until Jesus Christ establishes His physical kingdom on earth.

Things You May Not Know

The learned scholars have it wrong, at least many things wrong. Why? Perhaps the meaning of end time prophecy has remained sealed since the days of Daniel? Perhaps Satan has been more effective in misleading the scriptural message than one would think? Perhaps the mankind’s obstinate mind prefers the teaching of man rather than the voice of the Holy Spirit? Perhaps the mankind strives to protect their fragile ego rather than admitting possible error? I’m not sure. There are many things we cannot know about the latter day events, but the Holy Scriptures are clear on several issues:

  1. Today’s current events do not predict that we are in the last days. Commentaries from a century ago proclaimed that the “signs of the time” confirmed that they were in the final days. Preachers today proclaim the same message; however, all these wars, famines, plaques, natural disasters, and wickedness are very, very minor compared to those of the end time. Some 68 million people died in World War II; over 3.5 billion will die during the transition from the current age to the next.
  2. The book of Revelation has a clear, distinct chronology. Some scholars assert that John’s Revelation contains three major divisions that parallel each other. Other scholars assert that the book is written in a purely chronological order. Both beliefs ignore the clearly defined organization structure – seven seals leads to seven trumpets that lead to seven bowls of wrath. Interspersed within this primary narrative are several interludes that provide explanations and additional details.
  3. There is a distinction between the Great Tribulation, the Wrath of God, Daniel’s 70th Week, and the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. Although the periods may overlap and share common elements, the purpose, principals, and outcome are different. Prophecies from the Old Testament focus on Israel; prophecies from the New Testament focus on the Christian Church. While those prophecies may intermingle at times, the role and destiny of the Church and Israel are different.
  4. The prophecies within the Olivet Discourse are not directly only at the Jews. There is no scriptural evidence indicating that Rapture of the Christian Church will not occur prior to the start of the Great Tribulation. In fact, the Rapture will occur at the breaking of the 6th Seal on the scroll with seven seals well after the Antichrist has assumed authority over the nations. The Rapture will not be silent, but all nations and people will see Jesus Christ coming in the clouds to gather His elect.
  5. The Rapture of the Christian Church will not come upon us suddenly or unexpectedly. Although the Bible does not provide clues about when events begin, Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul provide significant details about the things that will occur prior to Christ’s coming in the clouds. We may not know the day or the hour of His coming, but those who study the Bible and listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit will recognize “all these signs” and know that He is near, even at the door.
  6. Redeemed Christians will experience tribulation, persecution, and martyrdom. The early Christians faced extensive persecution. In fact, scriptures clearly indicate that such suffering should be considered a normal part of a Christian’s daily walk. Open Doors USA reports, “An estimated 100 million Christians worldwide suffer interrogation, arrest and even death for their faith in Christ.”1 The world and Antichrist will persecute Christians, but the Lord will never leave their side (1 John 4:4).
  7. Those “left behind” after the Rapture will NOT have an opportunity to be “saved.” Some scholars assert that the 144,000 Jews become preachers, the two witnesses in Jerusalem become evangelists, and only “saved” will inhabitants the Millennial Kingdom initially; however, there is no scriptural evidence to support those claims. Once the Christian Church, the body of Christ, is translated to heaven, the Church Age will close and human redemption will assume a different form.
  8. Israel, orthodox Jews, will not become “saved” or “born again” Christians. Certainly, Israel will be saved, but not in the same manner or consistency as redeemed Christians. Israel will be reestablished in Palestine with its capital in Jerusalem. Israel will be ruled by a King, Jesus Christ, who sits on King David’s throne. Memorial sacrifices and offerings in a third Jewish temple will resume. Christians will receive imperishable, spiritual bodies and rule with Christ.
  9. There is a distinction between a Jew and a Christian. A Christian is an individual who has accepted and confessed Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the Son of God, and Lord… heritage has no bearing whether Jew or gentile. All Christians share in the same promises and the same body of Christ. However, a small Jewish population who remain faithful to their Jewish tradition. This group has not accepted Jesus as the Christ and do not share in the new covenant. They are the remnant of Israel.
  10. The Antichrist will only be one of many. Many scholars tend to concentrate on the beast from out of the sea, the Antichrist, and his partner, the false prophet. Certainly, the Antichrist will gain prominence and ultimately acquire authority over all nations and peoples; however, prior to his rise to power, numerous false messiahs and false prophets performing great wonders and deceiving many people. Perilous times will arise and the sources of trouble will abound.
  11. The Great Tribulation will begin prior to the Antichrist’s covenant with the many. Many scholars attempt to fit all latter day events into a neat, concise package of seven years, Daniel’s 70th Week. However, the Antichrist must have enough time to grow in stature and fame. He must have ample time to acquire sufficient influence to enact his covenant. The Antichrist will remain a minor player until the restrainer is moved out of the way; that takes place at the breaking of the 1st Seal.
  12. Israel and the Jews will not stand up for their Christian brethren. Although Christians and Jews share a portion of Holy Scripture and a common heritage, Jews will not forget their treatment by the bloody hands of Christians throughout the past two millennia. Similar to the Christians who remained silent during the Holocaust, the Jews will turn their backs on suffering Christians. Israel place their own security and survival over that of the Christian neighbors.
  13. The initial inhabitants of the Millennial Kingdom will not be “saved” individuals. Certainly, the wicked and those in allegiance with the Antichrist will share his fate and not pass into the Millennial Kingdom. A quarter to a third of the earth’s population will survive the distress of the latter days. Those who lack the traits consistent with the Kingdom of God will pass to Christ’s left during judgment. But the meek, the merciful, the persecuted, and the charitable will pass to the right.
  14. The Millennial Kingdom will not be a perfect utopia. Old Testament tends to focus on the positive aspects of the Millennial Kingdom while minimizing the negative. Certainly, manmade environmental devastation from millennia of neglect, warfare, and abuse will heal. Certainly, Satan and his legions will be bound and unable to nurture wickedness and suffering. However, there will be sin, there will be illness, there will be death, and there will be rebellion. Not yet a perfect world.
  15. Prophetic utterance can serve more than one purpose. Many scholars assert that a prophecy can only serve one purpose and be fulfilled once. This is an error. The Word of God is a living, breathing document that speaks to individuals and ages differently. The words do not change, but the function may apply differently. The Olivet Discourse provides an excellent example; it forewarned 1st Century Jews of the coming Diaspora and also describes the latter days of the current age.
  16. Christians can surrender their individual salvation. The doctrine of eternal security, once saved always saved, is generally true in principle – a person can never be forced to surrender their salvation and God will always provide an avenue of escape during times of extreme duress. However, the scripture clearly preaches that the one who endures to the end will be saved. As angels long ago, a saved Christian can reject and rebel against God; a person can abandon the faith.
  17. King David’s throne will be in Jerusalem within an earthly kingdom. Some scholars assert that Jesus Christ is ruling from David’s throne in heaven at this very minute. This is an error. Jesus Christ is currently sitting at the right hand of the throne of God the Father. He is serving as a priest, in the order of Melchizedek, to His Church on earth. When the time is right, that role will change and Christ will assume the role of conquering king and establish King David’s throne on earth in Jerusalem.

Christians Will Face Persecution

Many proponents of a pretribulation Rapture firmly assert that Christians will not suffer persecution under the Antichrist. This belief is so firm that they ignore clear historical and scriptural evidence demonstrating that persecution is a normal component of a Christian’s life. This error is significant and dangerous. It discourages Christians from arming themselves for possible future battles.

  1. The Lord sought not to remove Christians from this world but interceded for protection:
  2. John 17:14-15: I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. (NIV)

  3. The scriptures clearly indicate that the Antichrist will have authority over the saints:
  4. Revelation 13:7: He was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them… (NIV)

  5. Statistics clearly indicates that Christian martyrdom is not restricted to the past:
  6. The Catholic Standard and Times, 2008: Even the average church-going Christian is not likely to know that 45.5 million of the estimated 70 million Christians who have died for Christ did so in the last century.2

  7. Out earthly life and physical body are temporal; our souls are everlasting:
  8. Matthew 10:28: Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. (NIV)

  9. Persecution, suffering, and martyrdom is a normal component of Christian life:
  10. Hebrews 11:35-38: But others were tortured, not accepting release, to obtain resurrection to a better life. And others experienced mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, sawed apart, murdered with the sword; they went about in sheepskins and goatskins; they were destitute, afflicted, ill-treated (the world was not worthy of them); they wandered in deserts and mountains and caves and openings in the earth.

Three Dimensional Prophecies

Also referred to as Dual Purpose Prophecies, Dual Purpose Literary Devices, or Dual Fulfillment Prophecies.

Background

Matthias Gerung, The Giving of the Seven Bowls of Wrath
Matthias Gerung, The Giving of the Seven Bowls of Wrath / The First Six Plagues, Revelation, 1530-1532

Amillennialism – the Kingdom of God has already arrived, we are already in the millennial kingdom, and the first resurrection occurs upon spiritual rebirth. Preterism – prophetic events described in the Bible are historical; they have already occurred. Idealism – prophetic events should be viewed figuratively as imagery, symbols, and allegories not to be interpreted literally. Premillennialism – the Kingdom of God was delayed and Jesus Christ will return to establish His earthly kingdom one thousand years before the White Throne judgment. Which viewpoint is correct? Well, in a manner, each is based upon a partially correct view of the whole picture.

Of the competing views, the amillennial portrayal of the Kingdom of God seems relatively accurate. The Kingdom of God has already come and, if we accept Christ as Lord, we are living within that spiritual kingdom. The Preterism assertion that prophetic events have already occurred is at least partially correct. The Olivet Discourse accurately warned 1st Century Jews of the impending destruction of Jerusalem and the Diaspora. A partial Idealism view seems virtually imperative. If we do not interpret the beast in Revelation 13 as symbolic, our picture of the Antichrist would be incomplete. The Premillennialism accurately claims that Jesus Christ will return and establish an earthly, millennial kingdom prior to the final judgment. Unfortunately, each takes a flat view of prophetic events… they don’t view biblical scripture as multidimensional. They emphasize supporting passages, diminish opposing passages, or spiritualize passages to suit their purpose. This approach is problematic preventing us from forming a full and comprehensive portrait of God’s message.

Discussion

All too frequently, Christians forget that God created everything that has ever been created, that God nourished Israel while they wondered in the desert for forty years, that Jesus healed the sick and resurrected the dead, and that Christ arose from the grave. Biblical scriptures are not restricted by the limits of the human mind or human understanding but are omnipotent, infinite, and everlasting. The words were written by humans but inspired by the Holy Spirit. They transcend time, language, and interpretation. The Bible is the living, breathing Word of God. Holy Scripture is fully capable of transcending time:

Revelation 1:8: “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Revelation 1:19: Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later. (NIV)

The simplest and best example can be found in Daniel 9:27 and Matthew 24:15-16:

Daniel 9:27: …In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing [of the temple] he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him. (NIV)

Matthew 25:15-16: So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand— then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. (NIV)

According to some versions of the Jewish tradition, the “abomination that causes desolation” was committed by Antiochus Epiphanes in 168 BC by erecting a stature of Zeus within the Jewish Temple. Another view considers it as an allusion to Manasseh, who set up a carved image in the house of God.3 However, some 200 years later, Jesus Christ referred to it as a yet future event. Is there a discrepancy? No. Throughout history, we can see “types” that foreshadow future reality.

Some scholars argue that a prophecy can only be fulfilled once. Others argue that a prophecy can be partially fulfilled in one event and fully fulfilled at a later date. And, still others argue partial fulfillments serve only as an example of a future event. This debate is fruitless… the scholars argue technicalities while overlooking the intended messages. They are placing the limits of human logic on a document that transcends the human mind.

Early Christians understood that prophetic utterances had multiple applications in time:

Acts2:17-21: 17“In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. 18Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. (19)I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 20The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 21And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (NIV)

These words from Joel 2:28-32, spoken by the Apostle Peter, correctly applies to Pentecost when early Christians were initially baptized in the Holy Spirit. Notice the events used in verse 20 parallels that used by Jesus Christ within the Olivet Discourse, Matthew 24:29, Isaiah 13:10, and Isaiah 34:4.

Preterism asserts that those verses were thus fulfilled. Did Jesus Christ return during the 1st Century to gather His elect? Did the Day of the Lord, the final judgment, take place on Pentecost? Did the Apostle Peter misapply Joel’s prophecy? Of course the Day of the Lord did not occur during the 1st Century; the events of Pentecost simply serve as a “type” and foreshadow the latter days.

Adhering to a strict, rigid interpretation of scripture makes it impossible to acquire a comprehensive understanding of Bible messages. We must remain flexible. Acquiring a full meaning requires examining the words, figurative language, audience, context, intent, related examples, and parallel passages. Of course, too much flexibility can be equally destructive… We can over-read a passage assigning more meaning than intended. We can also spiritualize a passage distorting the intended meaning. We must use great caution; we must be flexible but not too flexible. Naturally, the addition of a second or third witness helps validate the perceived meaning.

Dividing Prophecies

Some scholars assert that individual elements of a prophetic vision can be fulfilled on different occasions. For example, some claim that portions of the Olivet Discourse were specific to 70 AD siege of Jerusalem and will not be repeated while other portions of the same discourse are reserved for the “end times.” We see a similar pattern when John’s prophetic visions within Revelation are spread over a period of two-thousand years.

There are examples of where two different elements of a prophecy are fulfilled on two separate occasions such as the resurrection of the saints and the resurrection of the wicked. There are also prophetic visions that are fulfilled over an extended period of time such as Nebuchadnezzar’s vision of the great statue. However, we must be very, very careful in dividing single prophetic visions into individual parts, and there must be ample justification for such divisions. In the case of the great statue, Daniel’s interpretation provides clear and sufficient evidence. In the case of two separate resurrections, the division is less clear and requires far more than a cursory glance – it requires a careful comparison and detailed analysis of related scripture.

Three Dimensional Examples

Abomination of Desolation

The Seven Churches4

The Olivet Discourse

Womand and the Dragon

The Book of Revelation

Matthias Gerung, The Fifth and Sixth Trumpets, Revelation, 1530-1532
Matthias Gerung, The Fifth and Sixth Trumpets, Revelation, 1530-1532

The human organ that gives the body it shape, framework, and durability is its skeleton; without a skeleton, the human would be a squishy blog without recognizable form and without meaningful function. Biblical prophecy can have a similar problem if we don’t have a proper framework to build a proper understanding. Luckily, the book of Revelation provides just such a structure for those events occurring during the transition between the current age and the next.

Some scholars assert that events within John’s Revelation occur in the exact order that they are presented. I have difficulty with this approach because it would force several events into an unnatural and illogical sequence. For example, the birth and resurrection of Jesus Christ is described in Revelation 12:5; we know, of course, those events occurred nearly 2,000 years ago and are unlikely to be repeated. A purely chronological framework is unworkable.

Other scholars assert that John’s Revelation is divided into seven parallel sections each representing events occurring during the current Church Age (Progressive Parallelism). These scholars assert that Christ’s work was essentially complete at the cross, and the “thousand years” mentioned in Revelation 20 is symbolic of the current age. Although an interesting construct, a plain reading reveals that the seven trumpets follow the seven seals, and the seven bowls of wrath follows the seven trumpets. This sequence in most notable in Revelation 8:1-2. Progressive parallelism requires far too much “spiritualization” to be considered a viable framework.

John does utilize a number of transitions throughout his narrative such as “and I saw,” “and I beheld,” “and I heard,” and “and I looked.” These transitions help us understand that John’s experience was not a one, coherent vision but rather a single, primary narrative intermingled with other related but non-sequential scenes (interludes) that provide explanation, additional details, or justification of the events within the primary narrative.

If we could image John watching his revelation on a television, it is highly unlikely that he that he would be watching on a single television monitor, but, more likely, he would be standing in a room with multiple monitors, perhaps something similar to a television control booth. Periodically, his focus would shift from the action on the main monitor to images being displayed on secondary monitors. When these secondary images play out, John’s focus would then shift back to primary monitor. These secondary images do not necessarily share the same time sequence as the main event but provide additional information to help us acquire a better understanding. Although determining when John’s focus shifts from one vision to another can be difficult, the book actually contains a clear, coherent organizational structure – much like a bulleted list within a formal business presentation.

John’s narrative reads as a legal justification for God’s outpouring of judgment and wrath. Several non-sequential scenes (interludes) are placed within the narrative to justify these outpourings. For example, although the two witnesses (11:1-13) give their testimony beginning with the first trumpet, they are not introduced into the narrative until after the sixth trumpet. Through their testimony, humankind has an opportunity to repent of their evils ways, but they will not (9:21). God’s outpouring of wrath, therefore, is justified and begins at the sounding of the seventh trumpet.

John’s Revelation: Brief Outline

Revelation Outline

John’s Revelation: Detailed Outline

Revelation Outline: Detailed

Daniel’s 70th Week: Detailed Outline

Daniel's 70th Week

  1. Transition from Church to Millennial Age: Encompasses all events from Jesus Christ accepting the scroll with seven seals until He physically establishes His Millennial Kingdom on earth.
  2. The Great Tribulation of the Church: Encompasses all events from the breaking of the 1st Seal on the scroll with seven seals until the translation of the Christian saint to heaven.
  3. The Church in Heaven: Encompasses all events from the translation of the Christian saints to heaven until those saints accompany Jesus Christ during His Second Return to take physical possession of earth.
  4. 1st Seal Broken: Jesus Christ breaks the 1st Seal on the scroll with seven seals (Revelation 6:1) and the “one who now holds it back” is “taken out of the way” (2 Thessalonians 2:7). Transition from the current age to the future age beings.
  5. 6th Seal Broken: Jesus Christ breaks the 6th Seal on the scroll with seven seals (Revelation 6:12) and the coming of Christ in the clouds to gather His Christian elect – the Rapture (Thessalonians 4:16-17, Matthew 24:30-31).
  6. Coming of Christ in the Clouds: The translation of redeemed Christian to heaven – the Rapture (Matthew 24:40-41, 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 2 Thessalonians 2:3-6, John 14:1-3, Acts 1:9-11, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, Philippians 3:20-21).
  7. Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: The breaking of the first four seals on the scroll with seven leading to conquest, war, famine, and plagues primarily the result of man’s wickedness and cold-heartedness (Revelation 6:1-7, Matthew 24:4-8, Luke 21:8-11, Mark 13:5-8).
  8. Great Distress upon the Earth: False messiahs, false prophets, wars and rumors of wars, nation against nation, famines, earthquakes, wickedness (Matthew 24:4-8, 2 Timothy 3:1-5, 2 Peter 3:3-7).
  9. Persecution of Christian Saints: Christian witnesses brought before rulers, persecuted, flogged, put to death, hated by all, apostasy, love grown cold, betrayal, preach the gospel to whole world (Matthew 24:9-14, Luke 21:12-19, Mark 13:9-13)
  10. Antichrist Grows in Stature: The Antichrist is empower by Satan and grows in stature, power, and authority (Revelation 6:1, 2 Thessalonians 2:6-7, Revelation 13:1-4)
  11. The Church in heaven takes residence and prepares for wedding feast: The bride, Jerusalem, prepares in heaven for the wedding feast. (John 14:1-4, Matthew 22:1-4, Matthew 25:1-13, Ephesians 5:22-32, Revelation 19:6-9)
  12. Nation Against Nation: A time of conflict and conflagration between nations prior to the Antichrist assuming authority over all nations. (Matthew 24:6-7, Mark 13:7-8, Revelation 6:1-4)
  13. 1st Half of the Week: (3 ½ Years) Time of relative peace between nations and Israel (Daniel 9:20-27)
  14. 2nd Half of the Week: (3 ½ Years) The Antichrist’s covenant broken, and the dragon pursues Israel. (Daniel 9:20-27)
  15. Rule of the Antichrist: Antichrist consolidates power and assumes authority over all people and nations. (Daniel 7, 9:20-27, 11:36-45, 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12, Revelation 12, 13, 17, Matthew 24:15, Mark 13:14)
  16. Antichrist Sign Covenant with Many: A peace treaty between warring nations including Israel. (Daniel 9:27)
  17. Relative Peace among Nations: Nations united under covenant of Antichrist; Christians targeted as scapegoats.
  18. Israel Reinstitute Sacrifices & Offerings: Third Temple rebuilt, covenant with Antichrist permits use (Daniel 9:27, Matthew 24:15, Mark 13:14, 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12)
  19. Antichrist Breaks Covenant: Jerusalem conquered, Abomination of Desolation. (Daniel 9:27, Luke 21:20, Matthew 24:15)
  20. Flight from Judea: Jerusalem conquered, Jews flea Jerusalem (Luke 21:20-24, Matthew 24:15-23, Mark 13:14-20)
  21. Sealing of the 144,000: Spiritual remnant of Israel sealed & hidden in wilderness (Revelation 7:1-8, 12)
  22. Wrath of God: Day of the Lord – 7th Seal Broken, 7 Trumpets, and 7 Bowls of Wrath (Revelation 8-11, 15-16, 19)
  23. Antichrist gathers for Armageddon: 6th Bowl of Wrath (Revelation 16:12-16, Revelation 19:11-21)
  24. Christ Returns w/ Armies: The physical coming of Jesus Christ as King and conqueror. (2 Thessalonians 2:8, Rev. 19:11-21)
  25. Time of Jacob’s Trouble: Israel regathered & hidden; Jews persecuted. (Jeremiah 30, Daniel 7:21-25, Rev. 7:1-8, 12, 14:1-5)
  26. Two Witnesses: Elijah and Enoch or Moses witness in Jerusalem (Malachi 4:5, Zechariah 4, Revelation 11:1-14)

The Olivet Discourse

The information provided with the book of Revelation is incomplete – it does not contain all the information necessary for a complete portrait. This is not an uncommon trait within biblical scripture… many passages omit information when they assume the listener is already familiar with the material or the information does not directly impact the lesson being taught. For example, in Matthew 24:15 Jesus does not provide a detailed description of the “abomination of desolation” – he assumes his listeners are aware of Daniel’s prophecies. Similarly, John’s Revelation relies on other scripture to fill in many details.

Jesus Christ described many events that will occur at the end of this age within his Mount Olivet Discourse detailed within Matthew, Mark, and John. In conjunction with the book of Revelation, we can acquire a fairly detailed outline of the events at the close of the current age:

Gospel Prophecy Outlines

The Olivet Discourse and Revelation

A Fictional Narrative

The following narrative is purely fictional with events having little or no scriptural support. It is provided to the reader visualize what might happen, not what will happen.

This fictional narrative is based largely upon the ideology of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, “Anyone who loves freedom and justice must strive for the annihilation of the Zionist regime in order to pave the way for world justice and freedom.”5 There is no intent to cause offense to peace loving people of any religious, cultural, or ethnic background. It is my fervent prayer that all come to know God and find peace and redemption within His message to mankind.

  1. BREAKING OF THE 1ST SEAL: CONQUEST: (Revelations 6:1-2) The “restrainer” is moved out of the way and the transition from the current age to the next begins (2 Thessalonians. 2:6-7). The Antichrist is empowered by Satan and begins to grow in power and stature (Revelation 13:6). Proud and arrogant leaders rise to positions of authority especially in the Middle East (Matthew 24:6). Efforts by Israel to ensure its survival and security are increasingly frowned upon by the global community (Psalm 83:2-4). The frequency and influence of false messiahs and false prophets increases exponentially (Matthew 24:5, 11). Christianity and their beliefs are increasingly considered radical, archaic, and socially unacceptable (Matthew 24:9-14). Self-interest reigns supreme in the absence of moral codes.
     
  2. BREAKING OF THE 2ND SEAL: WAR: (Revelations 6:3-4) The proud and arrogant leaders form an alliance and strike Israel (Psalm 83:508). Although initially a regional conflict, global powers step in as the tides of battle ebbs and flows. With focus on the Middle East, other regional conflicts – Pakistan and India, North Korea and South Korea, and Vietnam and China – flare. Some rogue nations may resort to use of tactical nuclear weapons on a limited scale. (Matthew 24:6-7) Trade sanctions and embargoes are employed, shipping lanes and ports become hazardous, and global trade comes to a virtual standstill. (Matthew 24:7) The arrogance of the Christianized West is banner song among non-Western nations and fuels acts of barbarism on its own citizens and nonmilitary targets.
     
  3. BREAKING OF THE 3RD SEAL: FAMINE: (Revelations 6:5-6) In the absence of significant global trade, devastation to transportation and infrastructure, and damage to the environment, economies sputter and scarcity permeates societies (Matthew 24:7). Taxation to support war efforts coupled with rampant inflation compounds the effects of scarcity, especially food stuffs. Because of vigilance and frugal lifestyles, Christians fair relatively well. Moderate leaders are toppled by civil unrest, and they are replaced with radical activists advancing unrealistic promises (earthquakes: Matthew 24:7) and shifting the blame for social and economic ills on the “radical Christian extremists” who “encouraged Israel to attack her peaceful neighbors” (Matthew 24:9-12).
     
  4. BREAKING OF THE 4TH SEAL: DEATH: (Revelations 6:7-8) Death and disease become rampant through war, malnourishment, disease, and repressive regimes (wild beasts). Infrastructure lies in ruins. Monetary systems have collapsed. Sound military strategy is replaced by religious fanaticism… humans are thrown into battle with little equipment, supplies, and ammunition. Marshall Law is declared throughout the world. Christians are blamed for shortages of food, medicine, and clothing; authorities assert that “radical Christian extremists” are promoting death and mayhem in order to hasten the return of their Hebrew Messiah. The prevailing attitude among the young is “eat, drink, and be merry for tomorrow we die.” Rioting and vandalism become widespread. Dead bodies are collected and burned daily to suppress contagion.

  5. THE COVENANT WITH THE MANY: RISE OF ANTICHRIST: (Daniel 9:27) People, nations, and armies are exhausted. Miraculously, Israel has survived the onslaught and exists as a permanent military encampment. In the midst of conflict, they have built the third Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount; they intend to remove the Islamic Dome of the Rock to make way for the Temple’s outer court. But a young charismatic leader arises from the North to promote a seven year armistice between Israel and her Arab neighbors:

    Let us rest our armies and weapons for a season so that we might turn our energies to feeding and clothing our young. Burn your sacrifices and incense to your God but let the Rock lay barren for a time. Let our women and children mourn their dead this night; and when the sun rises in the morning, we will talk of future things.
     

    An uneasy peace emerges, and the world is able to momentarily turn from war to rebuilding its infrastructure, its trade, and its monetary system. Domestic disruption continues but diminishes as the properties of “radical Christian extremist” are confiscated and redistributed to the masses.

    PEACEFUL INTERLUDE: RULE OF THE ANTICHRIST: (Revelations 13) Through his charisma and the diplomacy of his religious adviser, the young leader guides the nations out of the darkness of war. An international bartering system replaces monetary systems and permits the trade regional resources necessary to rebuild civilization: grain, crop seed, medicine, labor, livestock, fertilizer, energy, textile, and other commodities. Nations tap into the system enabling rationing of supplies in exchange for products and labor… local farmer and goods markets are forbidden. The charismatic young leader is viewed as a Godsend by the masses.

    Muslims view Jewish Temple service in such close to the Dome of the Rock as profane and an affront to Islam; they hotly strain at their leash desiring end the atrocity. The charismatic young leader keeps the peace by quietly promising his Arab allies that they will strike when the time is right. He silently siphon the profits from the trading system exchanging food, clothing, and medicine for weapons of war.

  6. BREAKING OF THE 5TH SEAL: MARTYRDOM OF THE SAINTS: (Revelations 6:9-11) Despite relative peace, shortages of vital commodities such as food, clean water, clothing, and shelter remain critically low causing widespread rioting and looting. Civil authorities, seeking appease the masses, institute rigid anti-Christianity laws that (1) bans confessing Christians from holding government, professional, or public positions, attending public schools, or receiving treatment from publicly supported medical facilities; (2) permits the search, upon “reasonably suspicious cause,” of private property and seizure of any “communal” property, weapon, or “excessive” supplies of food or clothing; (3) forbids the publication or distribution of “unauthorized” religious or political materials; (4) prohibits the private assembly of two or more individuals not related by close kinship; and (5) permits the confiscation of any land, property, or structure considered “vital” to reconstruction efforts.

  7. Local authorities, in an effort to quell local uprisings, are granted permission to perform public summary executions for “any individual who publically displays intolerance for a peaceful society striving for the ‘enlightenment of humanity’ through mutual aspiration, tolerance, and cooperation.” Local authorities may grant a reprieve to any individual who publically repents from their transgressions against society, renounces any philosophical or religious doctrine harmful to peaceful coexistence of mankind, and publicly demonstrates remorse through a permanent “exhibition” of loyalty to the “enlightenment of humanity.”

    THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK: ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION: (Daniel 9:27, Daniel 11:36-45, Luke 21:20-24) Radical Arabs, dressed as Hasidic Jews, bombing the Dome of the Rock causing extensive exterior damage; Israeli officials enter the Dome area to assess the damage and conduct an investigation. Arab nations are enraged and return of authority to manage the Temple Mount. The government of Israel refuses.

    Under the guidance of the charismatic young leader, Arab armies strike Israel with three primary objectives: (a) decapitate Israeli leadership through the use of mujahedeen forces, (b) avoid Israeli military strongholds, and (c) seize control of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. Within hours, the armies lay siege to Jerusalem. Israeli citizens are captured, imprisoned, deported, and executed. Many escape the city through a labyrinth of underground tunnels. Levitical Priests hide within the catacombs beneath the Temple Mount. Jerusalem succumbs to the siege and the Arab armies turn their focus on the remaining Israeli military encampments.

    In an internationally televised event from the Temple Mount, the charismatic young leader is seen entering the Jewish Temple, and upon his exit, he announces from the Inner Court:

    Humanity has suffered long enough from the bloody hands of Zionist pigs and their whoring lapdogs. Their filthy spew has contaminated the enlightenment of humanity for far too long. The day of the Mahdi has come; immorality, oppression and injustice will cease. Find them, kill them, and purge the land from this heinous plague.
  8. BREAKING OF THE 6TH SEAL: RAPTURE/SEALING: (Revelations 6:12-17, 7) A calm creeps over the earth, the winds do not blow, and birds do not sing. A slow, building rumble penetrates the stillness, and darkness descends. A star emerges from the east growing in brilliance and magnitude, and then it explodes as if the sun itself had burst. Humans fall to the ground, they shield their eyes, their knees tremble, and their hearts quiver; the earth trembles violently and fear permeates the air. A pillar of fire descends over the Temple in Jerusalem purging the interior with tongues of fire. Christians stand and gaze at the heavens while the Jew kneels in silent prayer.
  9. A grave darkness and heavy silence encases the earth… the only sound a muffled weeping of small children and their young mothers.

TO BE CONTINUED…


1Jerry Dykstra, “Islamic-Majority Countries Top Open Doors 2012 World Watch List,” Earned Media, January 4, 2012. <http://www.earnedmedia.org/odusa0104.htm> August 26, 2012.

2Susan Brinkmann, “The Greatest Story Never Told: Modern Christian Martyrdom,” The Catholic Standard and Times, December 5, 2008. < http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2143770/posts> August 22, 2012.

3“ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION,” Jewish Encyclopedia, 1906. <http://jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/353-abomination-of-desolation> August 27, 2012.

4Dates derived from Jim A. Cornwell, The Alpha and the Omega - Chapter Six, 1995. <http://www.mazzaroth.com/ChapterSix/SevenHistoricalChurchAges.htm> August 27,2012.

5Joanna Paraszczuk, “Ahmadinejad: World forces must annihilate Israel,” The Jerusalem Post, August 2, 2012. <http://www.jpost.com/IranianThreat/News/Article.aspx?id=279864> August 28, 2012.


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