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PROPHECY

Who Is Who

WHO IS WHO                     REVELATION CHAPTERS 11, 12, 17 & 21

The message of the two witnesses.

In Revelation 11:3 two special emissaries are sent to Israel. Their ministry is accompanied by signs to substantiate the divine origin of their message according to the Old Testament prophetic use of signs. The substance of their preaching is not revealed, but its content may be seen as suggested by the clothing of those messengers. They are said to be clothed with sackcloth (Greek sakkos), which is defined as:

a coarse cloth, a dark coarse stuff made especially of the hair of animals - a garment of the like material, and clinging to the person like a sack. It was worn by mourners, penitents, suppliants ... and also by Hebrew prophets.

When we compare the ministry of Elijah in 2 Kings 1:8 and that of John the Baptist in Matthew 3:4, whose ministries were parallel in that they were sent to Israel in a time of apostasy to call the nation to repentance, with the ministry of the two witnesses of Revelation, we see that the sign of their message in each case is the same.

It is possible that they do not neglect the preaching of the cross, for Revelation 7:14 and Zechariah 13:8-9 indicate that the preaching of the gospel of the kingdom must be accompanied by the preaching of the cross.

Who these two witnesses are is a mystery. Some think they could be Moses and Elijah for they did appear on the mount of transfiguration (Mt. 17:1-3). And others say they could be Enoch (Gen. 5:24) and Elijah (2 Kings 2:11) since neither of these men experienced physical death, and Jesus stated: "It is appointed unto man once to die and after this the judgment." They believe that since these two men have not died, they are the two witness that will lie dead in the streets of Jerusalem.

They are also referred to as the:
TWO OLIVE TREES Revelation 11:4 Zechariah 4:3, 11, 14
TWO CANDLESTICKS Revelation 11:4 Zechariah 4:2

THEIR MISSION was to declare the Word of the Lord to their generation.

"Then the angel that talked with me answered and said unto me, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord. Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. (Zech 4:5-6)

The Three Women In Revelation

The bride, the Lamb’s wife Rev. 21:9
The woman clothed with the sun Rev. 12:1
The great whore Rev. 17:1

The Bride, The Lamb’s Wife

THE CHURCH WILL BE UNITED TO CHRIST -        The figure of the Church as a virgin has been used previously (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:27), and in the Revelation her union with Christ at the "marriage of the Lamb" is foretold (Rev. 19:7). This can only mean that she will be brought into the most intimate relation with Him. The idea of fellowship and of co-ownership are involved in the conception (Rom. 8:16,17).

THE CHURCH WILL REIGN WITH CHRIST -       As His bride she will be at His side and share in His authority in His worldwide kingdom on earth (I Cor. 6:2; Rev. 1:6; 3:21; 20:4,6; 22:5). She will even have a part in the judging of angels (I Cor. 6:3). Having suffered with Christ in the day of His rejection, the Church will reign with Him in the day of His glorification (2 Tim. 2:11-13). The duration of the reign is first specified as one thousand years (Rev. 20:4,6), but later on it is said that His servants shall "reign for ever and ever" (Rev. 22:5). That is, they shall reign with Him the thousand years, and this is but the beginning of a reign that shall last through eternity.

THE CURCH WILL BE AN ETERNAL TESTIMONY -        She will witness throughout eternity to God’s wisdom and goodness (Eph. 3:10,21). Her very presence with Christ will speak of His grace and power in saving and keeping her in the midst of an evil generation. Thus Christ will be eternally glorified in the Church.

"Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb"

The Woman Clothed With The Sun

One point of prophetic revelation that it is essential to clarify in dealing with Israel in the tribulation is the identity of the "woman" in Revelation 12.

THE MAJOR EMPHASIS -    In Revelation 11:19-20:15 we find the attack of Satan against the people with whom God is dealing at that time. This attack comes in chapter thirteen through the beasts, who offer a false Messiah and a false fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant. It comes in chapters seventeen and eighteen through an apostate religious system, which falsely claims to be the Kingdom of God. It comes in chapter nineteen through the alliance of nations which is formed against this people and their King, which the Lord destroys at His coming. Since the major movement in this portion of Revelation is against the one called in chapter twelve the woman, it is important to identify this individual who occupies so important a place in the book.

A MAN CHILD -     This quotation from Psalm 2, which all would agree is a Messianic Psalm, identifies the man child here as none other than Jesus Christ. The fact of the birth, the fact of the destiny of this child, for He is "to rule all nations with a rod of iron," and the fact of the ascension, since He is "caught up unto God, and to His throne," all cause the identification to point to one person, the Lord Jesus Christ, for of none other could all three statements be made.

THE WOMAN REVEALES -       The whole context in which this passage is set reveals that John is dealing with the nation of Israel. Revelation, chapters eleven to fourteen, leads us prophetically to Israel. Israel’s land and Israel’s final tribulation, the time of Jacob’s trouble and the salvation of the godly remnant. The scene of the eleventh chapter is "the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified." That city is not Rome but Jerusalem. The twelfth chapter begins a connected prophecy, ending with the fourteenth.

SUN, MOON AND STARS -         Frequently in the Old Testament the sun, moon, and starts are used in reference to Israel. They are so employed in Gen. 37:9, where the sons of Jacob are clearly understood. Compare Jer. 31:35-36; Joshua 10:12-14; Judges 5:20 and Psalm 89:35-37 where heavenly bodies are associated with Israel’s history.

THE TERM  "WOMAN" -     Eight times the term woman is used in this chapter, and eight additional times the pronoun she or her is used in reference to the woman. We find this term used frequently in the Old Testament to refer to the nation of Israel. It is so used in Isaiah 47:7-9; 54:5-6; Jer. 4:31; Micah 4:9-10; 5:3; Isa. 66:7-8. While the church is called a bride, or a chaste virgin, we never find the church referred to as a "woman."

The Great Whore

Revelation 17 outlines the judgment on the great harlot, the apostate religious system, that exists in the tribulation period. The unbelieving professing church went into the tribulation period (Rev. 2:22; 3:10) and a great religious system, under the domination of the great harlot, arose. This refers to "religion", those who profess Christianity, but deny the Divine authority of the Word of God, the virgin birth and vicarious sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

The description of the harlot - John has given many details that furnish a description of this system:

1. The system bears the characterization of a harlot (Rev. 17:1,2,15,16). It claims to be Christ’s bride, but has fallen from its pure position and became a harlot.
2. The system is a leader in ecclesiastical affairs (Rev. 17:2,5). Spiritual fornication in the Scriptures has reference to adherence to a false system.
3. The system is a leader in political affairs (Rev. 17:3). It is seen to be controlling the Beast upon which it sits.
4. The system has become very rich and influential (Rev. 17:4).
5. The system represents a phase of the development of Christendom that was before unraveled (Rev. 17:5) in that it is called a "mystery."
6. The system has been the great persecutor of the saints (Rev. 17:6).
7. The system is an organized system of world-wide scope (Rev. 17:15).
8. The system will be destroyed by the Beast, the head of the Roman coalition, so that his supremacy may not be threatened (Rev. 17:16,17).

THE IDENTITY OF THE HARLOT -         We will now trace its genealogy beginning with:

Ham - Son of Noah
Nimrod - Grandson of Ham
Semiramia - Wife of Nimrod (started the "Babylonian mysteries")
Tammuz - Son of Semiramia & Nimrod (started the cult - Mother & child)

The following nations followed the "mother & child" cult instituted by Tammuz:

Phoenicians (Astoreth & Tammuz)
Egyptians (Isis & Horus)
Greece (Aphrodite & Eros)
Italy (Venus & Cupid)
Israel - (followed Canaanite Baal-worship)
Rome - (Etruscan Mysteries)
Julius Caesar   (Pontefex Maximus)
Constantine the Great
Bishops of Rome (Pope) Read Foxes book of Martyrs

HAM

Ham, the unworthy son of Noah. Noah had brought through the flood the revelation of the true God. Ham on the other hand seems to have been all too readily affected by the apostasy that brought the flood, for he shows no evidence of self-judgment. His name means "swarthy," "darkened," or more literally, "the sunburned." The name indicates the state of the man’s soul. Darkened by light from heaven. Ham begat a son named Cush, "the black one," and he became the father of Nimrod, the apostate leader of his generation.

NIMROD

 We learn that the founder of Bab-el, or Babylon, was Nimrod, of whose unholy achievements we read in the 10th chapter of Genesis. He was the arch-apostate of the patriarchal age. He persuaded his associates and followers to join together in "building a city and a tower which should reach unto heaven." To be recognized as a temple or rallying center for those who did not walk in obedience to the word of the Lord. They called their city and tower Bab-El, the gate of God; but it was soon changed by divine judgment into Babel, Confusion. Nimrod, or Nimroud-bar-Cush, was a grandson of Ham, the unworthy son of Noah.

SEMIRAMIA

She is reputed to have been the founder of the Babylonian mysteries and the first high-priestess of idolatry. Semiramis bore a son whom she declared was miraculously conceived! and when she presented him to the people, he was hailed as the promised deliverer. This was Tammuz.

TAMMUZ

Ezekiel protested against the worship of Tammuz in the days of the captivity. Thus was introduced the mystery of the mother and the child, a form of idolatry that is older than any other known to man. The rites of this worship were secret. Only the initiated were permitted to know its mysteries. It was Satan’s effort to delude mankind with an imitation so like the truth of God that they would not know the true Seed of the woman when He came in the fullness of time. Their worship was celebrated with the most disgusting and immoral practices. The image of the queen of heaven with the babe in her arms was seen everywhere, though the names might differ as languages differed.

Linked with this central mystery were countless lesser mysteries. Among these were the doctrines of:

1. Purgatorial purification after death.
2. Salvation by countless sacraments such as priestly absolution.
3. Sprinkling with holy water.
4. The offering of round cakes to the queen of heaven (See Jeremiah)
5. Dedication of virgins to the gods, which was literally sanctified prostitution.
6. Weeping for Tammuz for a period of 40 days, prior to the great festival of  Istar, who was said to have received her son back from the dead.
7. The sign of the cross was sacred to Tammuz, as symbolizing the life-giving principle and as the first letter of his name.

It is represented upon vast numbers of the most ancient altars and temples, and did not, as many have supposed, originate with Christianity.

JULIUS CAESAR

When the city and temples were destroyed, the high-priest fled with a company of initiates and their sacred vessels and images to Pergamos, where the symbol of the serpent was set up as the emblem of the hidden wisdom.

From there, they afterwards crossed the sea and emigrated to Italy. There the ancient cult was propagated under the name of the Etruscan Mysteries, and eventually Rome became the headquarters of Babylonianism.

The chief priest wore mitres shaped like the head of a fish, in honor of Dagon, the fish-god, the Lord of life-another form of the Tammuz mystery, as developed among Israel’s old enemies, the Philistines. The chief priest when established in Rome took the title Pontifex Maximus, and this title was held henceforth by all the Roman emperors down to Constantine the Great, who was, at one and the same time, head of the church and high priest of the heathen!

BISHOPS OF ROME (POPE)

The title "Pope" was afterwards conferred upon the bishops of Rome, and is borne by the pope today, who is thus declared to be, not the successor of the fisherman-apostle Peter, but the direct successor of the high priest of the Babylonian mysteries, and the servant of the fish-god Dagon, for whom he wears, like his idolatrous predecessors, the fisherman’s ring.

THE PERSON AND MINISTRY OF THE FALSE PROPHET, THE RELIGIOUS LEADER

In close association with the Beast, the head of the federated empire, is another individual known as the "False Prophet" (Rev. 13:11-18; 19:20; 20:10), called "the second beast". Here is some interesting information.

1. This individual is evidently a Jew, since he arises out of the earth, or land, that is Palestine (13:11).
2. He is influential in religious affairs (13:11, "two horns like a lamb").
3. He is motivated by Satan as the first beast is (13:11).
4. He has a delegated authority (13:12, "the power of the first beast").
5. He promotes the worship of the first beast and compels the earth to worship the first beast as God (13:12).
6. His ministry is authenticated by the signs and miracles which he does, evidently proving that he is Elijah that was to come   (Malachi 4:5;  Rev. 13:13,14).
7. He is successful in deceiving the unbelieving world (13:14).
8. The worship promoted is an idolatrous worship (13:14,15).
9. He has the power of death (Job 2:6) to compel men to worship the beast  (13:15).
10. He has authority in the economic realm to control all commerce (13:16,17)
11. He has a mark that will establish his identity for those who live in that day  (13:18).

It will be observed that the Revelation, in relating the second beast to the first, presents him as subservient to the first. He is called "the false prophet" (16:13; 19:20;20:10), who ministers in connection with the first beast as his prophet or spokesman. We are presented, then, with a Satanic trinity, the unholy trinity, or the trinity of hell.

A. The Dragon
B. The Beast
C. The False Prophet

Satan's failed plan:

The position occupied by God in His program is assumed by Satan (Isa 14:12-16)
        Offers a false covenant with Israel

The place of His Son, Jesus, is assumed by the first Beast (Rev 6:2)    
        Offers a false messiah to the world

The ministry of His Spirit in the earth is discharged by the False Prophet. (Rev 13:13, 14)
        Offers a false spokesman for God with signs & wonders

THE WORD OF GOD                     REVELATION 19:13

THE ANCIENT OF DAYS    

To fully understand the subject of the Godhead, we need:

1. A revelation from God.
2. A reliance on the authority of the Scriptures.
3. A dismissing of preconceived ideals.
4. A hunger to learn more of the mystery of God.
Question: What was the first thing created by God?
Answer: The Word of God "... These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the beginning of the creation of God;" Revelation 3:14

What are we dealing with here?             "The revelation of Jesus Christ,....." Revelation 1:1

First -

Jesus, the physical man, was never Pre-existent. He was born in a stable in Bethlehem. Christ, the Divine anointing by God, the Word (Logos Greek), was pre-existent.

A. "In beginning was the word, (Logos) and the Word was with God, and God was the Word. He was in beginning with God. All things through him came into being, and without him came into being not even one which has come into being." Interlinear Greek-English John 1:1-3
B. "And the Word (Christ) became flesh (human, incarnate) and tabernacled- fixed His tent of flesh, lived awhile among us; and we (actually) saw His glory - His honor, His majesty; such glory as an only begotten son receives from his father, full of grace (favor, loving kindness) and truth."        The Amplified New Testament  John 1:14
"......for he was before me." John 1:15
"......where he was before?" John 6:62
"......Before Abraham was I am." John 8:58
".....I had with thee before the world was." John 17:5
".....he is before all things." Col. 1:16
".....by whom also he made the worlds;...express image" Heb. 1:1-3

God is spirit, is invisible and fills the universe. To be able to deal with man (Gen. 3:8) God took on a human form that appeared to man (Gen. 18:1,2;20-33).   This form we call the Word and through this form God created all things that were created. Now you might think that this form of God called the Word was a second Divine Being which we call God but that is not truth (Isaiah 43:10,11). God does not know of any other god beside Himself, and neither do I.

This creative force called the "Word" filled the man Jesus, who is the Christ (annointed) of God so that Jesus could say, "If you have seen me you have seen the Father." So the fullness of the Godhead dwelt bodily in the man Jesus. Is it any wonder that Thomas would say "My Lord and my God!" John 20:28

Second -

Jesus in his humanity was not equal with God the Father. But Jesus in His Divinity (as Jesus the Christ = the Annointed) was not only equal but was the visible composite of the only true and invisible God, Jehovah.

Jesus was obedient to the Father. Mt. 26:39
Jesus did not know when he would return. Mr. 13:32
Jesus could not do mighty works by himself.     Jn. 5:19
Jesus needed to be taught.         Jn. 8:28
Jesus said His Father was greater. Jn. 14:28
Jesus said His Father was His God.  Jn. 20:17
Jesus was subject to His Father in all things.       I Cor. 15:28

Does that mean that Jesus Christ is just another manifestation of the One True God? No, but I place Jesus in a special category not as a angel, but as The Son of God, begotten of the Holy Ghost (which is the Spirit of God) brought forth into the world. Jesus the man, the flesh, was and is the Son of God. With the limitations that is put on flesh, all flesh.

As the Son he was hungry. Mt. 4:2

As the Son he was thirsty.     Jn. 4:7
As the Son he got tired and slept.     Mr. 4:38
As the Son he had no place to call home. Mt. 8:20

What we refer to as the Book of Revelations, is actually "The Revelation of Jesus Christ" (Rev. 1:1):

1. Rev. 1:13 "one like unto the Son of Man," = Jesus
2. Rev. 4:9 "to him that sat on the throne," = Jesus
3. Rev. 5:6 "a lamb" = Jesus
4. Rev. 12:5 "a man child" = Jesus
5. Rev. 19:6 "Lord God omnipotent" = Jesus
6. Rev. 19:13 "The Word of God." = Jesus
7. Rev. 22:16 "I Jesus" = Jesus

 

Forward to the Next Section:  The Rapture,  or  "Catching Away"

Bibliography

 


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