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Antichrist's Origins

By Rodrigo Silva

 

Recently we explored the possibility of Western Europe being excluded from the kingdom of the Antichrist and being a coalition of nations that will attack the political and economic capital of the Antichrist. We saw that even though the Roman empire will be part of the kingdom of the Antichrist, only the Eastern section which for the most part dominated the areas of Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria - all Islamic nations - will be included in the Antichrist's political kingdom.

The first three beasts of Daniel, namely the lion (Babylonian Empire) the Bear (Medo-Persian Empire) and the Leopard (Grecian Empire) are combined together  into one mega-empire as seen in Revelation 13:1-2. The beast of Revelation 13 has 7 heads which represent the 7 empires that ruled the Middle East and Israel as seen throughout the Bible. These empires are:

1 - Egyptian Empire
2 - Assyria Empire
3 - Babylonian Empire
4 - Medo - Persian Empire
5 - Grecian Empire
6 - Roman Empire
7 - Ottoman Empire

Many prophecy students teach that the 7th empire according to Revelation 17:10 is a second phase of the Roman empire but the Ottoman empire conquered the Byzantine Roman empire and was the seventh head-kingdom of the beast. The 10 horns are scattered upon the 7 heads of the beast in Revelation 13. This beast is the fourth beast of Daniel 7 which could only be described by the prophet as terrible and dreadful and as we study the maps of these kingdoms, we discover that Rome most likely was not the fourth beast of Daniel 7 because the fourth beast was said to crush all the previous kingdoms. Rome was a Western Empire which extended no further East than Syria, Egypt and Jordan. During its greatest extent, it went as far as the Euphrates River but only for a few months according to some historians. The fourth beast of Daniel 7 was supposed to conquer all the area dominated by Babylon, Persia and Greece. As we study the maps of these three empires, we discover that with the exception of the Babylonian Empire, they extended from Macedon in the West all the way East to Pakistan and Afghanistan, areas which the Roman empire never conquered.


The fourth beast of Daniel 7 is a geographical combination of the first three beasts. This is emphasized in Revelation 13 where we read that the beast was like a leopard, it had the feet of a bear and the mouth of a lion. This is the description of the Babylonian, Medo Persian and Grecian empires combined together politically and geographically. The 10 kings must be 10 nations that will rise within the geographic location of the 3 empires combined together. Since the 7 heads of the beast represent the 7 kingdoms - Rome was one of the kingdoms - some nations of the Roman empire must be included but only the area that was also  within the confines of Babylon, Persia and Greece since the physical description of the beast in Revelation 13 emphasizes these three kingdoms. The  most  Middle East influential nations  that came out of the Roman empire which were within the confines of the Babylonian, Persian and Grecian Empire are:

Syria
Turkey
Egypt
Jordan
Lebanon

These 5 nations already make for 5 of the 10 kings that were scattered upon the head of the beast. The other 5 most influential Middle East nations that are confined into the geographical combination of Babylon, Persia and Greece are:

Sudan or Libya (These are North African countries which were under the dominion of the Persian, Grecian, Roman and Ottoman Empires
Iraq
Iran
Pakistan
Afghanistan

Here we have a total of 10  Middle Eastern nations that were geographically confined within the Babylonian, Persian, Grecian, Eastern Roman  and Ottoman Empires. Many great prophecy teachers point to the two legs of the image of Daniel as the East and West divisions of the Roman Empire, thus making 5 kings  Western nations and 5 kings Eastern nations. But if the image of Daniel 2 is parallel to the four beasts of Daniel 7 and the Roman empire most likely was not the fourth beast because it became the composite beast of Revelation 13:2, a combination of Babylon (lion), Persia (bear)  and Greece (leopard), then the legs of Iron of the image in Daniel 2 most likely is not a reference to the Roman Empire either. It must also refer to a political and geographical combination of the three previous metals (gold, silver and brass) together which will bring the same 10 kings represented by the 10 toes of the feet of the image which are a mix of Iron and clay.

The seven heads of the beast also include the Egyptian and Assyrian Empires. We will not expand upon this here since Egypt and Assyria were also  confined within Babylon, Persia and Greece.

If this view happens to be the correct one, the 10 kings that are scattered upon the 7 heads of the beast are:

King #1 Egypt
King #2 Sudan or Libya

As mentioned above, these two African nations were under the Persian, Grecians, Roman, and Ottoman Empires.

King # 3 Lebanon
King # 4 Syria
King # 5 Turkey
King # 6 Jordan

Jordan holds custody to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and must be an important player in the kingdom of the Antichrist. Perhaps this is the reason why it escapes the Antichrist's military attacks to conquer the other 9 nations as seen in Daniel 11:40-45

King # 7 Iraq
King # 8 Iran
King # 9 Afghanistan
King # 10 Pakistan

It is interesting to note that almost every single one of these nations is mentioned in the Bible as coming under the judgement of God.

Egypt is judged by God in Isaiah 19
Egypt, Sudan (Ethiopia), Libya (Put),  and Arabia are judged by God in Ezekiel 30:5, Isaiah 18
Syria (Damascus), Iraq (Babylon), Iran (Elam) are judged by God in Isaiah 13-14, 17 and Jeremiah 49-51
Turkey (Magog, Meshech, Tubal and Gomer)  is judged by God in Ezekiel 38
Iran (Persia) is judged by God in Ezekiel 38
Lebanon (Tyre) is judged by God in Ezekiel 27-29, Isaiah 23
Jordan (Moab, Ammon and Edom) Isaiah 15, Jeremiah 49

Why do we insist that the beast is a confederacy of European nations when all the prophets other than Daniel mention all these nations by name? The problem is that most prophecy teachers only base their conclusions on the book of Daniel especially chapters 2 and 7, but totally ignore the rest of the information God gave us in the Bible concerning the nations that will be part of the kingdom of the beast.


Afghanistan and Pakistan might be the kings of the east mentioned in Revelation 16:12, not China as most prophecy teachers claim. The East in the Bible is a reference to the  region East of the  Euphrates River in Iraq and this area was ruled by both the Persian and Grecian Empires which extended their dominion all the way East to the Hindus River, the border between Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, therefore, the East must be confined within the kingdoms mentioned in the Bible, not the far East which had no influence in biblical history whatsoever. Prophecy teachers connect the 200,000,000 creatures of Revelation 9:16 with the kings of the east of Revelation 16:12 - something I also used to believe - in order to come up with a Chinese army. The problem with this teaching is that the 200,000,000 creatures are released during the sixth trumpet judgement which apparently takes place during the first three and a half years of the tribulation whereas the kings of the east belong to sixth bowl judgement which takes place close to the end of the second three and a half years of the tribulation. Besides, these 200,000,000 creatures whatever they are, are connected with the area of the Euphrates River (Revelation 9:14) which again, points to the Middle East, not to the far East.

Since the region of  Saudi Arabia was not under the dominion of any of the above empires, we have excluded it here but since Saudi Arabia is the heart of the Islamic religion which will play the major role is this political kingdom, Saudi Arabia might replace one of the 10 kings. Or it will not be one of the 10 kings because in Ezekiel 38:13 , Saudi Arabia as Sheba and Dedan seems to oppose (at least diplomatically) the Magog invasion which some great prophecy teachers believe is not a reference to Russia, but to the Antichrist himself coming from Turkey. On the other hand we have Saudi Arabia as the Ishmaelites joining the Arab confederacy that seeks to destroy Israel in Psalm 83. It is really hard to conclude whether Saudi Arabia will be one of the 10 kings or not. It might only offer the religion that will dominate the political policy of the beast.

I have explored the possibility of Western Europe being included in the kingdom of the Antichrist and mentioned some European nations as some of the 10 kings. But as I examine the maps and the possibility that Rome was not the fourth beast of Daniel 7 which becomes the composite Babylonian, Persian and Grecian Beast of Revelation 13, I begin to realize that this political mega-empire will be a Middle East centralized kingdom totally excluding the West from it. It might have diplomatic relations with the West as we see with the formation of the Mediterranean Union, but it will ultimately be confined within the Islamic-Arab nations of the Middle East.

It is interesting to note that the Islamic Messiah known as Imam Al-Mahdi signs a 7 year peace treaty with Israel more specifically through a Jewish priest according to Islamic eschatology which will be mediated by a Roman (a Western political leader). This kind of thing  has already taken place when Bill Clinton, a Western leader mediated the Oslo Peace Accords signed between Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and the Prime Minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin. The same thing happened when Bill Clinton also mediated a peace plan between Yitzhak Rabin and King Hussein of Jordan known as the Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace.

When this takes place again, and the peace treaty is signed for 7 years, a very prominent Muslim leader will sign a peace treaty with Israel  which will be mediated by a Western leader, perhaps from the United States or perhaps from the European Union. The Secretary General of the Western European Union Javier Solana has recently offered to be a peace broker between Israel and the Arabs in order to put an end to the Israeli - Palestinian conflict. Supposing for a moment that this takes place next year just for the sake of illustration with Javier Solana mediating a 7 year peace treaty between Israel and a Muslim leader, the Christian world will point to Javier Solana as the Antichrist (if the Rapture does not take place before) when in fact it is the Muslim leader who signed the peace treaty with Israel who will be the Antichrist and will be given authority by the 10 Islamic nations mentioned above according to Revelation 17:10 - 12.

Most Bible prophecy teachers today point to Europe as the kingdom of the Antichrist and to the Antichrist as a European political leader. This is what I also used to believe until not long ago, but as I keep studying Bible prophecy and comparing it to Islamic eschatology, everything seems to fall into place perfectly. The Antichrist will definitely be a Muslim leader to rise to power in the Middle East and will be supported by 10 Islamic nations when he breaks his treaty with Israel and invades Jerusalem to make it the capital of his kingdom (Caliphate) as desired by the entire Islamic world.

One thing that must be addressed here is the view that the Antichrist will not rule just the Middle East, but the entire globe. We usually point to Revelation 13 where we read:

''and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.'' (Revelation 13:7b)

We often make the mistake of over-emphasizing a Bible verse in order to make it mean whatever we want it to mean. The same is true with this verse. We have concluded that the Antichrist will rule the entire planet based on this passage. Again, I had to correct my view on this one too. The kindreds, tongues, and nations that are in view here are Middle Eastern nations. The context of the passage is talking about a Middle Eastern political kingdom. Remember that the Beast was like a leopard, had the feet of a bear and the mouth of a lion and that it had 7 heads? This explains that the beast  geographically points to:

Leopard: Remnants of the Grecian Empire - Turkey, Syria and Egypt (Daniel 11)
Bear: Persian Empire - Modern day Iran
Lion: Babylonian Empire - Modern day Iraq

The seven heads are:

Egyptian Empire - Mostly Egypt today
Assyrian Empire - Northern Iraq today
Babylonian Empire - Mostly Iraq today
Medo- Persian Empire -  Mostly Iran, Kurdistan, Pakistan and Afghanistan  today
Grecian Empire - Seleucid and Ptolemaic dynasties which are mostly Syria and Egypt today
Eastern Roman Empire - Mostly Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey and Jordan today
Ottoman Empire -  Turkey and the rest of the Middle East

These are the nations that the beast is given power over to according to the context. I Daniel 2 we read that God gave power to King Nabuchednezzar over all the earth, but he only reigned over the region of Mesopotamia and the Middle East. The Greek word translated ''earth'' in Revelation is ge and one of the definitions of the Strong's concordance describes it as:

a country, land enclosed within fixed boundaries, a tract of land, territory, region

This and the context of Revelation 13 that points to the Middle East geographically shows that the dominion of the Antichrist will be a regional dominion, not a global one. He desires to bring the whole world under his dominion but God will raise up a group of nations to oppose his rise to world dominance and the European Union is in my opinion, the league of nations that God has allowed to come together in these last days to be one of his tools against the Antichrist and his political kingdom.

Conclusion

The 10 kings of Revelation 17 which will give their authority to the beast will be within the confines of the 7 kingdoms of biblical history which ruled over the Middle East and Israel. It will be a regional kingdom, not a global one as we have been taught in the past. The more I study this subject, the more I feel the need to go back and correct my views. Some might say that there is contradiction in my articles but I say they are not contradiction, they are just further corrections. I personally believe that we have to be humble enough to accept the fact that we have been wrong and be willing to correct our views. Unfortunately this is not a virtue possessed by many prophecy students and scholars out there. I love what Chuck Missler has to say about this:


"
The only certain barrier to truth is the presumption that you already have it.'' ......Chuck Missler








Antichrist's Origins (...take 2)

 

By Bill Salus

 

Relatively recently a small circle of individuals have injected into the Christian Church a paradigm shift in Antichrist thinking. They advocate that this beastly individual has Assyrian origins. Oddly the book of Daniel, which seemingly issues the most pivotal prophecy regarding the origin of this personage, does not once mention the Hebrew word Ashur, or Ashshur, which is translated as Assyria, or Assyrian. This term is utilized within the Old Testament approximately 135 times; however, Daniel considered by many to be a prophetic authority on the subject of the Antichrist, apparently didn’t feel the Assyrian shoe fit the foot of this coming crazed world leader.

This is striking in that among all the prophetic books within the Bible, perhaps excepting the book of Revelation, the book of Daniel alludes to this individual as much, if not more than, all the others. Daniel calls this individual by several names like the beast, representing his hostile disposition, and the horn, alluding to his authority; however, he never labels him the “Assyrian”.

Similarly, Daniel issues numerous telling descriptions of him; like he speaks pompous words and declares himself above all that is called God, but the one who hails from Assyria, is never referenced among Daniel’s defining terms.

Perhaps one might think that Daniel was given information about the Antichrist, but not necessarily about his ancestral roots. However, Daniel 9:26 refutes this presumption in that it gives us the most detailed literal account within the entirety of scripture as to the origin of this individual. Therein we are informed that the Antichrist will originate from the people who would eventually destroy the city of Jerusalem, and the sanctuary, referring to the second Jewish temple.

According to world history books and traditional Church teaching this was accomplished by the Roman Empire, which In 70 A.D. did indeed destroy both the City of Jerusalem and the second Jewish Temple in apparent fulfillment of Daniel’s powerful prophecy. Hence the book of Daniel, rather than being vague about the origins of the Antichrist, could easily be considered the foremost book of Bible authority on the subject matter.

To date the best argument I’ve heard advanced by these Assyrian Antichrist advocates to refute Daniel’s claims, is that it wasn’t actually the Romans who destroyed Jerusalem and the temple. Rather, they argue that the Roman legion(s) responsible for the destruction consisted largely of Assyrian soldiers. This argument shows its weakness in several areas.

First, thematically the book of Daniel deals primarily with four Gentile world empires: the Babylonians, Medo-Persians, Greeks, and the Romans. The Assyrian empire had for the most part already come and gone by the time of Daniels prophetic discoveries. To suggest that it was the Assyrian soldiers within the Roman legions whom Daniel was actually alluding to, even though it was the Romans who wielded world authority and issued the command to destroy Jerusalem and the Jewish temple, makes no sense whatsoever.

Secondly, historical precedence typically dictated that the subservient soldiers of any ruling kingdom or empire became the subjects of that kingdom or empire. In this instance, even though the Roman Empire was known to employ non-Roman troops within its ranks, such as defeated Assyrians, these troops operated solely under the command of their Roman leadership. The legions that destroyed Jerusalem and the Jewish temple did not do so out of their own independent accord, but acted solely under the direct authority and instruction of the Roman Empire.

A secondary Assyrian Antichrist argument has been advanced that the Roman Empire, after the death of Theodosius 1 in 395 AD, underwent an East / West split and that the Eastern section could be considered as much a part of the Roman empire that Daniel referred to as could the Western. Daniel did seem to foretell of such a split in Daniel 2:33 where he described the fourth Gentile empire having legs made of iron. Since “legs” is in the plural most scholars concur that Daniel’s fourth empire refers to the Roman Empire, and that Daniel was describing such a split.

The Assyrian advocates suggest that the Antichrist arises out of the Eastern leg, since the Western leg today best describes the European Union, which is not geographically connected to ancient Assyria. In Daniel's time Assyria encompassed modern day Syria and parts of Northern Iraq.

There are two primary arguments against the Eastern leg being the leg from which the Antichrist comes: the "Historical" and the "Prophetical". The Historical argument will conclude part one of this article and the Prophetical will be discussed in part two.

The Historic argument is based upon the understanding that the capital city of the Roman Empire at the time of the destruction of Jerusalem and the second Jewish temple was in Rome, which then and today is located in the Western leg of the former empire. This provides at least one solid argument that the Beast does not come from the East.

Furthermore, much of the Eastern leg of the Roman Empire was swallowed up by the Turkish Ottoman Empire during its reign from 1517 to 1917; especially the territory formerly recognized as ancient Assyria. As such today the former Assyrian territory has no Roman connection. Therefore, should any future charismatic world leader arise from ancient Assyria he or she would likely be without Roman roots, and could not be the Antichrist described in Daniel 9:26.

The prophetic argument starts with Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 & 39 and concludes with several chapters in the book of Revelation. To preface the prophetic argument one must first understand that the Assyrian advocates need the Antichrist to be a Muslim. This is quite obvious, since should this devilish character emerge on the world scene soon out of Assyria, a predominately Islamic territory, the logical conclusion is that he would be a Muslim. After all, Daniel did make a religious connection with this individual when he said in Daniel 11:36, “Then the king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods…”

Some of the Assyrian proponents have suggested that the harlot religious system of Revelation 17 is Islam and that it is the magic carpet so to speak, upon which the Beast rides into world power. Thus to diffuse the Assyrian argument we must address the role of Islam in the agenda of the Antichrist.

Some, like Joel Rosenberg, Dr. David Reagan, myself, and others, have suggested that in the aftermath of the fulfillment of the Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 & 39 prophecies, Islam is dramatically diminished. The theory is that both of these prophecies likely occur before the Antichrist arrives on the world scene and that the 19 populations involved in these two major sequential prophetic events, which go down in defeat, are all predominately Islamic. Thus the conclusion can be drawn that when the Beast from the West arrives, he will find Islam as a religion largely irrelevant and of little utility in his bid for world dominance.

Needless to say, the Assyrian advocates have to group the Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 & 39 events all into the Antichrist’s Armageddon campaign for this reason. Islam cannot be diminished prior to Armageddon since, in their estimation, the Antichrist is a Muslim.









Some Bible Prophecy Scholars believe the Antichrist will be a Jew, or of Roman descent. Recently, more are coming to the conclusion that the Antichrist will be a Muslim from Syria or a future Assyria.

More recently, some compelling arguments have been put forward to suggest that the Antichrist may in fact come from America, and that the USA is actually mystery Babylon (listen here).

Similarly some believe the Antichrist's kingdom will be worldwide emanating from Europe, while others believe it will be restricted to the Middle East area. It is important I think to be open to all well founded arguments until the evidence for or against them becomes clearer.

If we are open to various arguments and don't become prematurely dogmatic one way or the other, at least we should not be taken by surprise, confused or caught out in any way, by the eventual realities. ....Keygar.

 

( related article here )

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