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.:The Book of Revelation :.
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 Posted April 11th, 2011 12:35 PM   IP              
Finely we have more Sermon.....

85 - The Book of Revelation (Chapter 3:7) - Billy Crone

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 Posted April 12th, 2011 03:43 PM   IP              
I don't know when we will get another one but as soon as they come in I will post it...today

86 - The Book of Revelation - (Chapter 3:8a) Billy Crone
http://www.sermonaudio.com/playpopu...?SID=4811105926

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 Posted May 1st, 2011 01:53 PM   IP              
87- The Book of Revelation - (Chapter 3:8b) Billy Crone
http://www.sermonaudio.com/playpopu...SID=42611939265

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 01:46 PM   IP              
I'm going to try do the Churches of Revelation for understanding I pray I can do this right....today.

Ephesus

Ephesus, in the Roman province of Asia, is 56 kilometers (35 miles) from Smyrna. Located opposite the island of Samos, it is the closest of Revelation's seven churches to the island of Patmos where the apostle John wrote the book of Revelation. It was the capital both of Ionia and proconsular Asia and was founded primarily by those from Athens. The city was originally called Arsinoe after the second wife of one of its governors.

Ephesus' location made it the chief city of Asia Minor. It maintained an artificial harbor accessible to the largest ships. The city stood at the entrance of a valley that reached far into the province. It was also connected via highways to other important cities in the region. Easily reachable either by land or sea, Ephesus was the most easily accessible city in Asia.

Ephesus had a plethora of the most eminent orators and speakers in the world and contained many beautiful buildings. It was world famous for its large temple to the pagan goddess Diana (in the New Testament Diana is a translation of the Greek word Artemis).

The city was also known for building the largest outdoor theater in the world, capable of containing 50,000 spectators. For many years it was the largest city in the Roman Empire next to Rome and boasted a population of more than a quarter million.

The Ephesian church was founded by the Apostle Paul.


Paul traveled through the upper parts and came to Ephesus; and when he found certain disciples, 2. He said to them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit after you believed?" And they said to him, "We have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit."

5. And after hearing this, they were baptized . . . (Acts 19)

Although Paul visited the city briefly during his second missionary journey, he returned during his third missionary journey and stayed for a little more than three years.

Tradition states the apostle John lived in the city after being released from Patmos. A marked tomb in Ephesus is believed by some to be that of John.

Map of the Roman Empire at its Peak


The traditional date for the founding of what eventually became the Roman empire is 753 B.C. This is the year, according to legend, that Romulus and Remus founded the city of Rome (also known as the Eternal City and the City of Seven Hills).

The Roman Republic began after the overthrow of the monarchy around 509 B.C. Two consuls, advised by the Senate, governed the Republic from its creation to about 27 B.C. The election of consuls took place annually. During this period a constitution gradually developed, based upon a separation of powers and a system of checks and balances within the government. Public offices during this era were generally limited to one year so that no single person could control and dominate the people.

From Republic to Empire

The date of the Republic's transition to the Roman Empire is a subject of disagreement among historians, scholars and others. Some believe the change took place in 44 B.C. when Julius Caesar became perpetual dictator. Others believe the transition occurred at the defeat of Mark Antony at the Battle of Actium in 31 B.C. or when the Senate granted extraordinary powers to Octavian (Augustus) in 27 B.C. The first true Roman Emperor is Augustus Caesar, who ruled from 27 B.C. to 14 A.D. After his reign came that of Tiberius (14 to 37 A.D.), Caligula (37 to 41 A.D.), Claudius (41 A.D. to 54 A.D.), and Nero (54 to 68 A.D.).

After the death of Nero, until the end of the first century, the empire was reigned by Galba (68 to 69), Otho (69), Vitellius (69), the Vespasian (69 to 79). After Vespasian General Titus became emperor. Titus was the man who led a campaign against Judea and destroyed Jerusalem and its temple in 70 A.D. Domitian followed him as Emperor in 81 A.D. Emperor Domitian exiled the apostle John to the Island of Patmos in 95 A.D. Following him as ruler is Nerva (96 to 98) and Trajan (98 to 117).

The Year of Four Emperors

After the death of Nero, around May of 68, Rome entered a short period of chaos and civil war known as the 'Year of Four Emperors.' In this period, four Roman emperors would rule in quick succession. Galba reigned from June 68 A.D. to his murder by Praetorian guards in January 69 A.D. Otho then came to power and lasted only until he committed suicide in April 69 after losing a battle. Vitellius then took the reins of power but he too, like Galba, was murdered. After Vitellius' death, the Senate declared Vespasian Emperor on December 20th of 69.

At the Peak of Power

After Domitian's death, the empire reached its peak of power and wealth under the rule of the 'Five Good Emperors.' These rulers, known for their moderate policies, were in contrast to their more tyrannical and oppressive predecessors and successors. This period was particularly notable for its peaceful method of succession, where each emperor chose his successor by adopting an heir. This prevented the political turmoil associated with unstable and weak governments. Secure from both internal and external threats these Roman rulers governed during a time of unprecedented territorial, economic, and cultural expansion.


Roman Emperors during
its height of power




Name Reigned

Nerva 96 - 98 A.D.

Trajan 98 - 117 A.D.

Hadrian 117 - 138 A.D.

Antoninus Pius 138 - 161 A.D.

Marcus Aurelius 161 - 180 A.D.

The greatest extent of territorial expansion occurred with Trajan's conquest of Dacia in 117 A.D. Rome is considered the third largest and most powerful ancient empire, behind the first place Persian and second place Han dynasty. At the time of Jesus, it had a total population of about 60 million people.

Fighting God

The Roman empire and its impact on Christianity and its beliefs were enormous. Rome carried out ten waves of persecution against Christians, the first of these began by Emperor Nero in 67 A.D. He instigated the torture and death of believers, many times as sport in the Circus Maximus, in order to deflect criticism of himself. During this first purge, the apostles Paul and Peter died a martyr’s death. The tenth and last of these persecutions began under Diocletian (284 to 305 A.D.). All during this period, in spite of the concentrated efforts to stamp out God's truth through the martyrdom of countless saints, believers in the Bible continued to multiple. The persecutions by the state finally ended in 313 A.D. when Constantine, in his Edict of Milan, legalized Christianity and ended the violence.
http://www.biblestudy.org/maps/roman-empire.html

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 01:56 PM   IP              
Smyrna

Smyrna, originally peopled by Asiatics known as the Lelages, is located 56 kilometers (35 miles) from Ephesus and 79 kilometers (49 miles) from Pergamos (Pergamon). It was one of the principal cities of Roman Asia and competed with Ephesus and Pergamos for the title "First City of Asia." Although the city was settled in the 11th century B.C., it did not begin to reach its height of importance until after Alexander the Great laid the foundation for a new city. The actual enlargement and fortification of the city was carried out under Antigonus (316 - 301 B.C.) and Lysimachus (301 - 281 B.C.).

The name Smyrna means "myrrh," which is a resin obtained from the Commiphora myrrha tree. Myrrh was used chiefly in embalming the dead since it had the property of preserving dead bodies from putrefaction. This type of embalming was used in Egypt and Judea. Myrrh is often remembered as one of the three gifts the Magi gave to Jesus after he was born.

Smyrna was known for its schools of science and medicine. It boasted of, on the slope of Mount Pagus, a theater that could seat up to 20,000 spectators. The city also celebrated Olympian games that were very popular with the local populace.

In 197 B.C. Smyrna severed its relationship with King Eumenes of Pergamos then appealed to Rome for help. Smyrna, because it had never established any ties to the Roman Empire, sought to create a bond by creating a cult of Rome. Smyrna's 'Rome cult' soon spread to other locations and may have led to the worship of the pagan goddess Roma.

On the ground floor of Ephesus' marketplace (Agora) existed twenty-eight businesses, all of which faced toward the north. The market's second floor contained rows of columns between which galleries existed. As such, the Agora was the largest marketplace in the ancient world.

Paul the apostle likely began the Christian church in the city. Polycarp (69 to 155 A.D.), believed to be one of apostle John's students, played a leading role in the Ephesian church in the second century A.D. It is believed Polycarp was martyred in Smyrna.

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 01:58 PM   IP              
Pergamos

Pergamos is located 79 kilometers (49 miles) from Smyrna and 61 kilometers (38 miles) from Thyatira. It is a town of Mysia located on the Caicus river. The city, from 281 to 133 B.C., was the residence of Attalia's kings and the Kingdom of Pergamos' capital.

Pergamos, after King Attalus died, was given to the Roman Empire in the hope of preventing civil unrest. His son attempted to seize the kingdom for himself but was defeated. The Roman province of Asia was then formed with the city as its capital.

Pergamos is also the birthplace of the well-known Roman physician, surgeon and philosopher named Galen.

Plutarch, a Greek historian and writer, started a library in the city. It soon grew to over 200,000 volumes and became the Greek's second best ancient library. It's reputation was so highly regarded that Marc Antony, upon his marriage to Cleopatra, gifted it to her as a present. Pergamos was also popular for the creation of a papyrus replacement (named pergaminus or parchment) using calfskin.

Pergamon's Great Altar, which was constructed in the early part of the 2nd century, is now located in a Berlin, Germany museum. The altar's base shows a epic war between a race of giants and the pagan gods of Olympus. A picture of the pagan god Zeus, believed to be the ruler of all things, adorns the altar's frieze. This gigantic altar was likely referred to in Revelation 2 when God said he knew his church in Pergamos resided "where Satan's throne is" (Revelation 2:13).


but you (Pergamos) are holding fast My name, and did not deny My faith, even in the days in which Antipas (the first Christian to be put to death by the Roman state) was My faithful witness, who was killed among you . . .

16. Repent! For if you do not repent, I will come to you quickly, and will make war against them . . . (Revelation 2:13, 16)

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 01:59 PM   IP              
Thyatira

Thyatira, seated on the river Hermus, is 61 kilometers (38 miles) from Pergamos and 51 kilometers (32 miles) from Sardis. The city was located in the northern part of Lydia of the Roman province of Asia, and bordered Mysia on the north and Lydia on the south. Thyatira, which in the Greek language means daughter, got its name in 290 B.C. in honor of the birth of King Seleucus I Nicator's daughter. Thyatira's modern name is Akhisar (Akhissar), which means a white colored castle.

Thyatira was a prosperous trading town that also hosted a major cult of the pagan god Apollo (son of Zeus). The city was famous for its dyeing and was a center of the indigo trade. Its trade guilds, for which it was well known, were more organized and in far greater numbers than in any other ancient Asia Minor city. Among its ruins were found inscriptions relating to a guild of dyers. Evidence suggests these artisans made use of the madder-root for making purple-colored dyes.

Every artisan in Thyatira belonged to a guild. Guilds were incorporated organizations that could own property in its own name and enter into contracts for construction projects. As such, they wielded a significant amount of influence. Two of the most powerful guilds were those of the coppersmiths and the dyers.

During his second missionary journey (Acts 16:13 - 15) the apostle Paul traveled to Philippi. On a Sabbath day, he meets a woman named Lydia, from Thyatira, who is praying near a river. Lydia is a seller of purple (either of the dye or cloth dyed in this color). She listens to Paul's preaching and becomes so convicted in God's way of life that she, along with her entire household, are baptized (likely on the Holy Day known as Pentecost). It is likely Lydia, when she traveled back to Thyatira, helped spread the gospel throughout the city.


Who is Jezebel?

God criticizes his church in Thyatira for allowing a female, who is given the symbolic name Jezebel, to teach false doctrine to believers (Revelation 2:20 - 23). The real life Jezebel was the wife of King Ahab, considered the most evil king of ancient Israel. Her notorious life earned her the spot as the fifth most mentioned woman in the entirety of the Bible!


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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:00 PM   IP              
Sardis

Sardis, located at the foot of Mount Tmolus, is 51 kilometers (32 miles) from Pergamos and 44 kilometers (27 miles) from Philadelphia (Alasehir). The city and surrounding area was watered by the river Pactolus. The river, known for its golden sands, helped make the city prosperous when gold was found near its banks.

The city was also noted for its fruits, wool, and temple to the pagan goddess Cybele (whose worship was very similar to the worship of the pagan goddess Diana (Artemis) found at Ephesus).

Sardis was the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Lydia. The kingdom's most noteworthy king was the very wealthy Croesus (Kroisos), who ruled from about 560 to 547 B.C. He was the first person to strike and issue the first true pure gold (and silver) coins used in the marketplace. His father King Alyattes, who reigned from about 610 to 560 B.C., minted and distributed the world's first coins. Alyattes' coins were made of electrum, an alloy of gold and silver.

The city became important to the Persians after it was conquered by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century B.C. By the first century A.D. the city had passed into the hands of the Romans. Although an earthquake destroyed it in 17 A.D. the city was soon rebuilt.

Tradition states the city was the first in its area to be converted by the preaching of the apostle John. It also may have been the first city that revolted from Christianity and one of the first that was laid in its ruins. The inhabitants were dimly viewed by their contemporaries for their voluptuous way of life. There may be an allusion to this fact in God's message to the church found in the book of Revelation.


4 But a few of you there in Sardis have kept your clothes clean (symbolic of being spiritually clean). You will walk with me, clothed in white, because you are worthy to do so. (Revelation 3:4)

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:01 PM   IP              
Philadelphia

The ancient city of Philadelphia, which sits near the Cogamus River, is 44 kilometers (27 miles) from Sardis and 77 kilometers (48 miles) from Laodicea. It is located in the Kuzucay valley, near the bottom of Mount Bozdad, in modern Turkey's province of Manisa. Behind the city are volcanic cliffs which the locals call 'inkwells.'

On one side of the city the land was fertile enough to grow grapes. The quality of wine produced by Philadelphia's fields was such that the Roman poet Virgil wrote about its excellence.

Philadelphia was founded in 189 B.C. by Pergamon King Eumenes and given its name in honor of the love he had for brother Attalus. The city was also called Decapolis, because it was considered one of the ten cities of the plain. In the first century A.D. the city was referred to Neo-kaisaria. During the reign of Vespasian, it was called Flavia. In addition to these names it was also sometimes referred to as 'Little Athens' because of the pagan temples and other public buildings which adorned it. Its modern name, Ala-shehir, might be a corruption of the Turkish words meaning 'city of God.'

Attalus III, the last of Pergamos' kings, lacked a royal heir to the throne. He bequeathed, upon his death (which occurred in 133 B.C.), that his kingdom (which included the city) be given to the Roman empire. Rome's Asia province was created in 129 B.C. by bringing together Ionia and Attalus' former kingdom.

The city was nearly destroyed and suffered a great deal when a major earthquake hit the area in 17 A.D. Emperor Tiberius, in lieu of the damages, allowed Philadelphia to be free of taxation. Various other emperors aided the area, such as Caligula (ruled 37 to 41 A.D.), Vespasian (69 to 79 A.D.) and Caracalla (188 to 217 A.D.).


10. Because you have kept the word of My patience, I also will keep you from the time of temptation which is about to come upon the whole world to try those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:05 PM   IP              
Laodicea

Laodicea, located at the junction of several important trade routes, is 77 kilometers (48 miles) from Philadelphia (Alasehir) and 155 kilometers (96 miles) from Ephesus. A round trip visit to all the seven churches of Revelation would be 523 kilometers or 325 miles.

The city, originally named Diospolis ('the city of Jupiter') and then Rhoas, was given the name Laodicea by King Antiochus II. The King, who named the city after his wife, rebuilt it and populated it with Syrians and Jews who migrated from Babylonia.

Laodicea, like Rome, was built upon seven hills. It was one of Asia Minor's most flourishing cities. It prospered primarily due to its trade route location, which made it a hub for large money transactions. Laodicea's sheep were also known for their fine black wool. The city minted coinage, some of which have inscriptions showing evidence of the worship of the pagan deity Zeus and of the emperors.

The city often suffered from earthquakes. It was completely destroyed when an earthquake occurred during the reign of Emperor Nero. The inhabitants were so wealthy that they declined Roman assistance to rebuild the city and instead opted to quickly rebuild it at their own expense.

The city's number of believers in the early New Testament church of God made it a major hub of Christianity. The apostle Paul makes at least 4 references to the city in his epistle to the Colossians. Interestingly, he references the city even though he had never visited it (quotes taken from The Holy Bible - A Faithful Version unless noted).


1. Now I want you to understand what great concern I have for you, and for those in Laodicea, and as many as have not seen my face in the flesh; . . . (Col. 2:1)

13. For I bear witness to him (Epaphras, a preacher who was pivotal in the conversion of many people in Colossae) that he has much zeal for you, and for those in Laodicea, and for those in Hierapolis (4:13).

15 Give our best wishes to the believers in Laodicea and to Nympha and the church that meets in her house. 16 After you read this letter, make sure that it is read also in the church at Laodicea. At the same time, you are to read the letter that the believers in Laodicea will send you. (4:15, TEV)


The Seven Churches
of Revelation Map
http://www.biblestudy.org/maps/the-...lation-map.html


Prophetic World Empires
from Babylon to the End Time Beast



God has revealed, in the books of Daniel and Revelation, the world-ruling Gentile (non-Israelite) empires (kingdoms) that would exist from the time of Babylon's empire to the Second Coming of Jesus - a span of more than 2,600 years! Biblical prophecy predicts no less than fifteen empires and the most influential false religious system the devil would create. The symbolic Bible prophecies that proclaim such events BEFORE they happen are:

The large image of a man dreamed by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon (Daniel 2).


The prophet Daniel's dream of four great beasts: A lion, bear, leopard and one strong beast with iron teeth and ten horns (Daniel 7).


Daniel's vision of a ram and a male goat (Daniel 8).


The apostle John's vision of a woman riding a beast with seven heads and ten horns (Revelation 17) along with an end time beast that will rule the world just before the Second Coming of Jesus (Revelation 13:1-8).


One simple but profound question generated from Bible prophecy concerns ancient Israel. Why would God allow Gentile nations to dominate the world instead of his chosen people - the Israelites? The Bible records God making a very special promise to the people of Israel just before they crossed the Jordan River to receive their inheritance in the land of milk and honey. He promised to make them HIGH ABOVE all the nations IF they keep his commandments (Deuteronomy 26:18-19).

God promised to make the Israelite nation preeminent in the world IF they obeyed his voice. Over time, however, they increasingly rejected God's way to the point where they refused to have him as their King and instead requested a human king be put over them (1Samuel 8:5-7). Eventually, because of their ongoing disregard for God's laws, ten of Israel's tribes were conquered and taken out of the land by the Assyrian empire (723 B.C.). The remaining tribes (Judah, Benjamin and Levi) lived in Palestine until they too, because of disobedience, were conquered and taken from their inheritance. Because Israel rejected God, he rejected them and gave their promised leadership role in the world to others - the Gentile empires which are listed below.






Assyrian and
Babylonian
Empires Map


Map of the
Persian Empire
at its height


Map of the
Roman Empire
at its PEAK


Alexander the
Great's vast empire


Empire of Athens
at its most powerful


Parthian Empire
at its greatest extent













Babylonian Empire
612 B.C.

Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Head of Gold (Daniel 2:32, 38)
First Beast like a Lion (Daniel 7:4)

Explanation
Babylon was the kingdom that ruled the earth at the time when Nebuchadnezzar dreamed an image of a man.

Notes

In 612 B.C. King Nabopolassar of Babylon defeated the Assyrian Empire and sacked its capital city of Nineveh. It was this victory that began Babylon's period as a world empire. The empire's greatest King was Nebuchadnezzar (reigned 605 - 562 B.C.), who conquered the Kingdom of Judah, took the inhabitants as captives to Babylon and, in 586 B.C., burned Jerusalem and destroyed its temple. Babylon's world supremacy lasted for only 73 years.



Persian Empire (Medo-Persian Empire)
549 B.C.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Chest and Arms of Silver (Daniel 2:32, 39)
Second Beast like a Bear (Daniel 7:5)
Ram with two horns (Daniel 8:3-4, 20)

Explanation
Persia is the second beast (prophetic kingdom) to rule the earth. This kingdom actually represents two kings ("ram with two horns") - the king of Media and king of Persia.

Notes

Astyages became king of Media in 585 B.C. Cyrus the Great became king of Persia, though not an independent ruler, in 559 B.C. Like his predecessors, Cyrus had to recognize Median dominance over his kingdom ("one was higher than the other, and the higher one came up last"). In 549 Cyrus overthrew the Medes and King Astyages (who was a family member, possibly Cyrus' grandfather).

The Persian empire is considered the most powerful kingdom of the ancient world. At its height it ruled more than 2.9 million square miles (7.5 million square kilometers) of land that spanned three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. The Persians were the largest empire in ancient history in terms of total land controlled. It is estimated that in 480 B.C. Persia had 50 million people living under its authority - or roughly 44% of the entire world's population. It was during the reign of Cyrus the Great that captive Jews were allowed to return to Jerusalem.



Macedonian (Greek) Empire of Alexander the Great
336 B.C.
and
Division of kingdom into four pieces
323 B.C.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Belly and Thighs of Bronze (brass) (Daniel 2:32, 39)
Beast (Leopard) with four Heads (Daniel 7:6)
Male Goat with large horn and four smaller horns (Daniel 8:5-8, 21-22, 11:3-4)

Explanation
After Alexander's death (the "broken horn") the "four that stood up in its place" to rule in his stead were his four generals. This means the empire that Alexander built and its subsequent division into four pieces are counted as the third, fourth, fifth and sixth prophetic kingdoms to rule the earth.

Notes

Alexander the Great, born in 356 B.C., was an ancient Greek king whose father was King Philip II of Macedon. Soon after ascending to the throne in 336 B.C. due to his father's assassination Alexander began a military campaign to realize his father's expansion plans. His conquests included the Persian Empire, Syria, Phoenicia, Judea, Egypt and Mesopotamia. The empire's boundaries stretched as far west as the Ionian sea and as far east as the Himalayas and India. Alexander never lost a battle (though many times he was outnumbered) and is considered one of the most successful military commanders in history.

The Greek kingdom, after Alexander's death in 323 B.C., was NOT passed to either of his two sons ("but not among his posterity"). Instead, as the prophecies indicated, it was divided up into four separate kingdoms by his generals Ptolemy, Antipater, Seleucus and Antigonus.



Roman Empire
27 B.C.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Two Legs of Iron (Daniel 2:33, 40-43)
Fourth Beast with teeth of iron and ten horns (Daniel 7:7, 23-24)

Notes

The transition of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire highly likely occurred in 27 B.C., when the Senate granted extraordinary powers to Augustus - who many consider to be the first true Roman Emperor.

The greatest extent of the empire occurred with Trajan's conquest of Dacia in 117 A.D., which gave the kingdom control of 2.5 million square miles of territory (6.5 million square kilometers). Rome is considered the third largest and most powerful of the ancient empires (behind the empires of Persia and the Han dynasty). At the time of Jesus it is believed Rome controlled a total population of 60 million people.

In 395 A.D. the united kingdom split into two separate pieces: The Eastern (Byzantine) Empire, which lasted until 1453 A.D. and the Western Empire, which lasted until 476 A.D.



The Great False Religious System
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Little horn among ten horns that causes the first three to be removed (Daniel 7:8, 20, 24-27)
Mystery, Babylon the Great, a whore riding a beast who is the mother of harlots (Revelation 17:1-6, 18)

Explanation
Prophecies represent the Roman Catholic Church and the Papacy. Rome is the "great city" that rules over the kings (kingdoms) of the earth.

Notes

The great whore of Revelation 17 did not ride any of the seven prophetic heads (empires) mentioned in Daniel 2 (Babylon, Persia, Greece (four heads) and Rome before its split) nor the first three horns of the fourth beast of Daniel 7. It did, however, mount and ride the fourth beast's last seven horns. These last seven horns of Daniel 7 are the same as the seven heads ridden by the great whore in Revelation 17.

The title "Supreme Pontiff" (Pontifex Maximus or "highest office") was first used around 220 A.D. by Tertullian to refer to the head of the Roman church. It wasn't until the 590's A.D. that this title was used in an formal sense to refer to the Pope.

Additional Bible Study Materials
Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel - Its teachings and humor
Picture of St. Peter's Square
Does the Pope rule over the world's SMALLEST state?
Did the Popes receive the "keys of the kingdom" and authority over the church from PETER?


The Vandals
439 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
First of ten horns / kings / kingdoms related to Rome's classical empire (Daniel 7:24)
First of three horns "plucked up" due to a little horn (Daniel 7:8, 20)

Explanation
The kingdom was overthrown at the behest of the Papacy.

Notes

The Vandals migrated to live in Roman territory around 400 A.D. King Geiseric led the tribe to North Africa in 429. In 439 they created their own kingdom which included parts of Africa that were controlled by Rome plus islands such as Sardinia, Malta and Corsica. They sacked Rome in the year 455. The Vandals defeated the fleets sent against them from both the Western (460 A.D.) and Eastern (468 A.D.) Roman empires. Their empire collapsed, however, in 534 A.D. when Belisarius (commander of Byzantine Emperor Justinian's army) defeated them at the battle of Hippo.



The Heruli
476 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Second of ten horns / kingdoms (Daniel 7:24)
Second of three horns "plucked up" due to a little horn (Daniel 7:8, 20)

Explanation
The kingdom was overthrown at the behest of the Papacy.

Notes

Under Odoacer (who became the first barbarian King of Italy) the Heruli deposed the last Emperor of the Western Roman Empire in 476 A.D. In 508 their short-lived empire came to an end when they were destroyed by the Lombards.



The Ostrogoths
493 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Third of ten horns / kingdoms (Daniel 7:24)
Third of three horns "plucked up" due to a little horn (Daniel 7:8, 20)

Explanation
The kingdom was overthrown at the behest of the Papacy.

Notes

In 493 A.D. Theodoric the Great became the first king of the Ostrogothic kingdom and replaced Odoacer as ruler of Italy. The Ostrogoths considered themselves upholders of the direct line of Roman traditions. In 535 A.D. the Byzantine emperor Justinian attacked the Ostrogoths and started what would become the nineteen year long Gothic War. In 554 the Ostrogothic empire finally fell.



Partial Restoration of the Roman Empire
527 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Fourth of ten horns related to Rome's classical empire (Daniel 7:24)
First of seven heads of scarlet Beast rode by the great religious whore (Revelation 17:1-6)

Explanation

Under Byzantine emperor Justinian I the Eastern empire conquered many of the lands lost by the Western Empire when it collapsed in 476.

Notes

Justinian, who reigned 527 to 565 B.C., was the first Eastern Roman (Byzantine) king who sought to reclaim the glory of Rome through conquering lands lost by the Western Empire. As a "Christian" emperor he considered it his divine duty to restore Rome's kingdom to its ancient boundaries. During his reign he fought many wars (Iberian, Vandalic, Gothic, Moorish, etc.) and did conquer many territories formerly controlled by the West (Italy, Africa, southern Hispania, etc.).

Although he considered himself "priest and king" over the Empire, Justinian officially recognized the Roman See (office of the pope) as the highest ecclesiastical authority.



Charlemagne (Charles the Great)
800 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Fifth of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Second of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)

Explanation
Charlemagne, crowned by the Pope, was the first Roman Emperor in Western Europe since the fall of the empire in 476 A.D.

Notes

Charlemagne was king of the Franks (starting in 768 A.D.) and the Lombards (starting in 774 A.D.) before becoming Emperor. In 799 A.D. Pope Leo III was mistreated by the Romans who tried to put out his eyes and tear out his tongue. After escaping and fleeing to Charlemagne the Pope requested his position be restored. Charlemagne traveled to Rome, then entered it with the Pope in November 800 A.D. A synod was held December 1 and the charges against Leo pronounced false.

On Christmas Day in 800, during Mass, the Pope crowned Charlemagne as Emperor of the Romans. This was the first time in history a Pope crowned a Roman Emperor. Charlemagne became the papacy's chief protector. He would ultimately unite most of Christian Europe under his rule.



Otto the Great
962 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Sixth of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Third of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)

Explanation
In 962 A.D. Otto the Great, in Rome, was crowned the first "Holy" Roman Emperor by the Pope.

Notes

Otto the Great was king of Germany and Duke of Saxony (starting in 936) and king of Italy (starting in 961) before becoming Emperor. He is considered the founder of the Holy Roman Empire.

Otto considered himself the protector of the Church in part due to his belief he had the "divine right" to rule. He strengthen ecclesiastical authorities such as bishops and abbots at the expense of the secular nobility.



Charles V
1530 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Seventh of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Fourth of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)

Explanation
In 1530 Charles was the last Holy Roman Emperor to be crowned by the Pope.

Notes

Charles was also Lord of the Netherlands (starting in 1506) and the first king of Spain (starting in 1516). He was of the house of Hapsburg, who produced all the formally elected Holy Roman Emperors from 1438 to 1740 A.D. Charles became king of the Romans / Italy in 1519. He ruled as Emperor from 1530 to 1556. It was during his reign that the Hapsburg Dynasty, for the first and only time, achieved the status of a true world empire.

Charles is best known for his role in opposing the Protestant Reformation. The Society of Jesus (Jesuits), formed initially to peacefully combat Protestantism, was started during his reign.



Napoleon I (Bonaparte)
1805 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Eighth of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Fifth of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)

Explanation
Napoleon was crowned King of Italy by the Pope in 1805, a title which he held until 1814 A.D.

Notes

In 1806 the Holy Roman Empire formally dissolved when the last Emperor abdicated following his defeat at the hands of Napoleon and the French. Napoleon reorganized most of the empire into the Confederation of the Rhine, which eventually was composed of 9 kings and 28 princes. The confederation collapsed in 1813 after Napoleon's failed attempt to conquer Russia.



Otto von Bismarck
1871 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Ninth of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Sixth of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)
The 'one is' king that will come after five have fallen (Revelation 17:10)

Explanation
The five kings / kingdoms that fell before Bismarck's rule were Justinian, Charlemagne, Otto the Great, Charles V and Napoleon. After a series of short wars, Otto was able in 1871 to unify numerous German states into a powerful Empire. He was the first Imperial Chancellor of the Empire from 1871 to 1890.

Notes
Otto created a "balance of power" in Europe that preserved the peace in the region from 1871 until 1914 (World War I).


Benito Mussolini - Adolf Hitler
1929 A.D.
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Tenth of ten horns related to Rome's empire (Daniel 7:24)
Seventh of seven heads of Beast rode by the great whore (Revelation 17:1-6)
The 'other that has not yet come' king (Revelation 17:10)
Explanation
Represents the European empire (kingdom) created by Hitler and Mussolini. In 1938 it became one of the wealthiest empires (by size of GDP) in modern times.

Notes

Mussolini was Prime Minister of Italy from 1922 to 1943. Hitler was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945. Supporters of Mussolini's attempt to create an Italian empire called it the New Roman Empire. Interestingly, in 1917 the British Security Service (MI5) paid Mussolini £100 a week to help him get started in politics.

In 1929 the Lateran treaties were signed by Mussolini and the Vatican. The treaties established the independence of Vatican City within Italy and granted Roman Catholicism special status in Italy. The treaties also included a legal provision whereby the Italian government would protect the honor and dignity of the Pope by prosecuting offenders.

The term "Third Reich," meaning the third German empire, is often used to refer to Germany during its years under Nazi control. The Nazis considered the first Reich to be the Holy Roman Empire from 962 to 1806 A.D., and the second Reich to be the German Empire from 1871 to 1918 A.D.



Final World Empire / Government
Represented in Bible prophecy as:
Ten Toes of Iron and Clay ultimately destroyed by God's kingdom (Daniel 2:41-44)
King that will kill Christians and fight the return of Jesus (Daniel 8:23-25)
Beast with seven heads and ten horns who will rule earth 42 months (Revelation 13:1-8)
Beast with two horns like lamb but spoke like a dragon (Revelation 13:11)
Eighth head that is Beast "that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth" (Revelation 17:11)
Ten horns (kings) that will give their power to fight against the Lamb (Revelation 17:12-14)

Explanation
The full meaning of these prophecies has yet to occur


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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:08 PM   IP              
Important Events in
Early New Testament Church
http://www.biblestudy.org/maps/map-...ent-church.html

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:10 PM   IP              
Japan in Biblical Prophecy

Does Biblical prophecy state the nation of Japan will be a major factor in the end time just before the return of Jesus Christ? Will Japan be an enemy or an ally of the United States? Is it fulfilling its prophetic role RIGHT NOW? Which countries might launch a sudden sneak attack against other countries in the world? The 38th and 39th chapters of Ezekiel reveal vital information about what happens to certain groups and alliances before Jesus returns to set up the Kingdom of God on the earth.

The prophet Ezekiel, under the inspiration of God, describes a great war between two global power blocs that occurs in the end time. The first power block is:


""Son of man, set your face against GOG, of the land of MAGOG, the prince of ROSH, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say . . . "Behold, I am against you" ' "

"'PERSIA, ETHIOPIA, AND LIBYA are with them . . . GOMER and all its troops; the house of TOGARMAH from the far north and all its troops'" (Ezekiel 38)

Who are these ancient groups of people TODAY that will eventually become a part of an alliance of nations?

Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh: The English word "Rosh" comes from the Hebrew word (Strong's Concordance #H7218) which means "head" or "chief." It means either the individual who is the chief or leader of this alliance or the nation which leads it.

Gog is identified as the prince of Meshech and Tubal. These entities have long been identified by Christian teachers as designating Russia in the modern world, and they are correct. There is much support for this designation. According to Ezekiel's prophecy Russia will lead an attack.

Persia is the region now called Iran. In ancient times, these people were known as the Medo-Persians. The word "Medes" is derived from the word for their ancestor named Madai, a son of Japheth. Japheth's other sons included Gomer, Magog, MADAI, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. Ham, another one of Noah's sons, had sons himself named Put, Cush, Canaan and others. Cush's sons included Seba, Raamah and others. Raamah had sons named Dedan and Sheba (see Genesis 10).

The next nation named as Russia’s ally is Ethiopia, which is derived from the Hebrew word for Cush (Strong's Concordance #H3568). Cush’s descendants do include the nation of Ethiopia in the Horn of Africa, but they are only a small portion of Cush’s descendants. Most Cu****es migrated eastward toward and into the Indian subcontinent and the name of their forefather Cush is still on the "Hindu Kush" mountains along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The next ally is called Libya. The Hebrew word translated "Libya" is Phut or Put (Strong's Concordance #H6316). Phut is a nation descended from Phut, a son of Ham (Genesis 10:6), and Young's Analytical Concordance to the Bible defines Phut / Libya as " . . . the region W(est) from Egypt along the African coast." This describes the region which includes Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, etc. Ezekiel’s prophecy does not specifically state "all of Phut" will join Russia’s alliance, so time will tell whether this region joins Russia.

The next Russian ally is labeled Gomer, who was one of the sons of Japheth (Genesis 10:2-3). The original language word for "troops" in Ezekiel 38:6 means "bands." Gomer will have an extremely large population and it will have many internal ethnic groups defined as "bands" or "troops." The nations of Japheth are found in the Oriental regions of Asia and especially in the most populous nation on earth: China.

The last major ally listed is Togarmah, who was a son of Gomer (Genesis 10:2-3). This group is described as being populous and having many ethnic groups ("bands"). It will be located in the "far north" regions of Asia and its close relationship with Gomer indicates it will be located just north of Gomer’s latter-day descendants.

The other alliance

The second large global alliance, attacked by the first one led by Russia, is called Israel in God's word. It is also referred to as the "the house of Israel."


" . . . In the latter years you (the global alliance led by Russia) will come into the land of those brought back from the sword and gathered from many people on the mountains of ISRAEL . . . "

"Thus says the Lord GOD: "On that day when My people ISRAEL dwell safely, will you not know it? Then you will come from your place out of the far north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great company and a mighty army. You will come up against my people ISRAEL like a cloud . . .
"For seven months the HOUSE OF ISRAEL will be burying them, in order to cleanse the land." (Ezekiel 38:8, 14-16, 39:12)
The lost tribes and Jesus

When the Parthian empire fell millions of refugees swarmed into the European continent. These refugees were known as the Saxons, Goths, etc. Many of the migrating tribes were descendants of Israelites who were taken captive out of the land of promise many years previous.

These peoples eventually formed countries known today as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to name a few.

A THIRD power bloc

Ezekiel 38 mentions another bloc of nations which is NOT part of the attacking alliance. Indeed, they OBJECT to it when it occurs:

13 The people of Sheba and Dedan and the merchants from the towns of (Tarshish) will ask you, 'Have you assembled your army and attacked in order to loot and plunder? Do you intend to get silver and gold, livestock and property, and march off with all those spoils?' (Ezekiel 38:13)

India, the largest democracy in the world, are descendants of the people of Dedan and Sheba. They increasingly are aligning themselves with the West due to the same concerns about terrorism, China and so on.

Tarshish (incorrectly translated as Spain in some Bibles), who was the son of Javan, are descendants of Japheth. Ezekiel 38 calls them "the MERCHANTS of Tarshish." The people of Japan perfectly fit the prophecies about Tarshish in the end time. They created the export-driven model of goods and services to other nations as a national policy. The father of Tarshish is Javan, a name only slightly changed to form JAPAN.

Is Japan a close ally of the West?

Japan lives near two world powers which it warred with in the past - the nations of China and Russia. These nations will not become its ally anytime soon. For its own survival it must, therefore, align itself with the other world power - the United States of America. The U.S. did not harshly rule Japan after the second world war. Rather, it allowed the nation to keep its monarchy and it treated its people with a certain amount of respect. And, more importantly, America helped lay the foundation in Japan for its economic revival.

TWO interpretations

There are two different interpretations of what verse 13 of Ezekiel 38 means.

The FIRST interpretation is that a set of Asian nations that includes Japan are allied with the modern descendants of Israel. The SECOND interpretation is that the alliance that includes Japan (Tarshish) is a neutral set of nations between two warring alliances. It seems likely Japan will be a military ally of the United States in the world's last war, even if they are not the initial targets of Russia, China and others. There is no doubt that Japan, India and other Western-type nations are fully aware that if America falls they will fall next. This end time war is called in the Gospels the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:21-22)

The prophesies of Ezekiel show that God will intervene in mankind's last war. He will fight with and for the modern-day descendants of the tribes of Israel and their allies such as Japan. Those who oppose them with be destroye

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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:15 PM   IP              
What is the KEY to
understanding the Book of Revelation?



Prophecy reveals, not conceals

Some believe the Bible's last prophetic book is closed - meaning no one as yet can understand it. Yet, the very first verse of Revelation states the opposite!


1. The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to Him, to show to His servants . . .

God gave to Jesus something to REVEAL, not to hide. In the book's last chapter God reiterates that his words were given to reveal and not to be sealed (Revelation 22:10)!

Revelation's theme

Revelation's theme is the events leading up to the Jesus' second coming. Revelation 2 and 3 contain vital warnings to seven churches that existed in Asia Minor in the first century A.D. Many believe these churches represent Christians from the time of Christ to the end time, or symbolize churches that will all exist before Jesus returns.

The Seals Unsealed

In Revelation 6 Jesus begins to open the first of six seals. As the seals are opened the apostle John records what he hears and sees. He sees, however, things that are symbolic of real things and events that will happen on the earth. The KEY to understanding what these symbols mean is to use Jesus' Mount of Olives message to interpret them.

Just a short period before his death on the cross, Jesus' disciples came to him on the Mount of Olives and asked him a very direct question after he stated the temple would be destroyed.


"Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of Your coming, and of the completion of the age?" (Matthew 24:3)





How did the
MAGI help
fulfill Prophecy?



List of world
ruling empires from Babylon to the Beast!



Do Old Testament verses accurately predict the future?



What are the HIDDEN numbers
of Revelation?



Why study
Biblical prophecy?



Who were the
Old Testament
minor prophets?












Jesus' answer will help us interpret the many symbols found in Revelation. He stated that before his return several things will happen.
1.
Many people pretending to be him, or pretending to speak for God, would appear.

2.
Nations will begin to fight each other in a global conflict.

3.
Starvation, suffering and devastating earthquakes will become common.

4.True believers will be taken and martyred for believing in and obeying Jesus.
5.
The sun will become dark, the moon will no longer shine and stars shall seem to be falling from the sky. A sign will be given that the time of Jesus coming has now arrived followed by his actual second coming back to the earth.


Now let us get back to the seals. When seal number one is opened (Revelation 6:1) a man on a white horse is shown who also has a bow in his hand and a crown on his head. This symbolizes those who PRETEND to be Jesus - who are false Christs - or who pretend to speak for God - false prophets.

Seal number two is opened. What appears is a horse that is red, and someone who is setting on it who has been given the power to take peace AWAY from the world. This seal begins a time of war, a time when Jesus stated nations will rise up against other nations in a global war.

Seal three is opened and a black horse appears. The one sitting on the horse has a scale that weighs food and charges a hefty price. This seal represents starvation and hunger. A fourth seal produces a pale horse that has Death riding it. It represents those who die due to disease and pestilence.

Jesus opens a fifth seal and what appears is an altar with the spirits of those slain for the word of God under it. This is the large killing of saints that will occur during what many call the Great Tribulation. Signs in the heavens, with the sun appearing as if it were black and the moon becoming as blood appear when the sixth seal is loosed. This represents the time leading up to the return of Christ.

A seventh seal is opened, and under it John sees angels, and the angels are given trumpets. This seal represents that last seven stages of God's plan.

Trumpet plagues one, two, three and four are are described as winds that blow on the earth, trees, rivers, sea. Trumpets five and six portray war. The last three of the seven trumpets are referred to as WOES (Revelation 8:13).

Woe, Woe, Woe

Woe number one is given in Revelation 9:1 to 11. The power that brings destruction to man is told to us in Revelation 17:14. It seems likely this power will be a type of resurgence of the old Roman Empire. For more information, read our article on world empires from Babylon to the End Time Beast power.

The second woe, with its horses and horsemen, is found in Revelation 9. When the second woe finally ends the ministry of the two witnesses does also.

When the seventh and last Trumpet sounds (third woe) Jesus Christ begins his return to rule the earth! This is the time when he shall conquer all his enemies and the world's nations will be ruled directly by him.



Time Sequence of Revelation


SEALS

False Prophets
War
Famine
Pestilence
Tribulation
Heavenly Signs

The Seventh Seal begins
the Trumpet Plagues

Trumpets 1, 2 and 3
Injure the earth, sea, trees and rivers

4th Trumpet
The Sun, Moon and Stars are darkened

5th Trumpet
Or first woe, where man is tormented

6th Trumpet
Or second woe, a great army is allowed
to kill one third of the world

7th Trumpet
Or third woe, the ministry of the Two Witnesses
and the Seven Last Plagues




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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:19 PM   IP              
What is the MARK of the BEAST?


How is the BEAST mentioned in the book of Revelation related to King Nebuchadnezzar's dream of a giant statue in the form of a man (Daniel 2)? Who will likely be the power that will rule the world during the end time? What exactly is the MARK of the Beast?

In order to figure out what the mark of the beast is, we first need to know who and what is the Beast. The key Biblical verses related to this topic are found in Daniel 2 (where it discusses Nebuchadnezzar's image of a great statue), Daniel 7 (where four great animals representing four kingdom are shown coming out of the Sea) and Revelation 13 (where the end time Beast is specially mentioned).

The two legs of iron of the great statue in Daniel 2 and the Beast that rises up out of the sea (Revelation 13) are symbolic of the same thing that the fourth animals in Daniel 7 represents. Daniel 7's dreadful and strong beast has teeth of iron and ten horns, making it the most fearsome animal seen in Daniel's dream. It represents the Roman Empire, including its various resurrections, such as the Holy Roman Empire of the Middle Ages.

The End Time Identity

The term 'Beast' can refer to either an empire as a whole or the dictator leading it, just as a king represents his country symbolically (cf. Daniel 7:17-18, where "king" and "kingdom" are interchangeable). The end time Beast will be the current European Union (possibly minus a few smaller countries) or the dictatorial person who heads it. What can be confusing is that the SECOND beast of Revelation 13 (verses 11-18) is the false prophet or man of sin described by Paul in 2Thessalonians 2 and the religious institution he or she leads. If we use what Revelation chapter 17 to 18 says about a "woman riding the Beast," this second 'animal' is also symbolized by a woman. Ask yourself what church became unified with the state during the Middle Ages and even with the Roman Empire before it fell? What church had great influence over kings and emperors?

Identity of the woman

If we use history as our guide to interpret these above symbols we arrive at the conclusion that the Roman Catholic church, both in the past and near future, was and will be in an unrighteous alliance with the European-based government that supports it. It may sound incredible and highly unlikely, but the union of church and state that characterized the Middle Ages WILL be reborn fully in the years just ahead of us. The church, or the person who represents her, will publicly perform demonic miracles that will deceive almost everyone into believing the power of God backs him.

The Number of the Name

What could the number 666 referred to in Revelation 13 possibly mean? Biblically, the number 6 represents incompleteness or imperfection, as it is one less than seven which is the number of completeness (e.g. seven days in a week). The meaning of three 6's, or 666, therefore, points to someone or something being imperfect or limited in three ways or three times. That is why it's the number of a man, since man is necessarily imperfect compared to God. A key understand that will help us further interpret this number arises from an interesting aspect of the Greek language (which was the original written language of the New Testament). You may have noticed certain clocks that use archaic numbers on their faces such as V or X. Most people know that V represents the number 5 and X the number 10. The Greek letters of the alphabet can also represent numbers.

In Revelation 13 it says to count or calculate the number of the beast (Revelation 13:18). It needs to be added up to mean something. It should not surprise those who have studied some Bible prophecy that the word for a "Latin man" in Greek (Lateinos) is made up of letters that add up to 666! This confirms that Rome is the first beast of Revelation 13 and the fourth beast of Daniel 7.

We know WHO or WHAT the Beast is, but what is its MARK? Let us use one of the tried and true principles of Bible study which is to let God's word interpret itself. Notice that nothing is said in Revelation 13 about high tech items such as computers and government issued photo IDs, although it's possible that such tools may be used to enforce the mark of the beast in the future. Notice that the mark (Revelation 13:16) appears on the right hand or on the forehead of people. The right hand is symbolic of a man's ability to do something that he thinks about. The forehead is symbolic of the brain and mind, where thoughts, good and bad, come from. Notice also that this mark will be popular and that most people will accept it. They will take the mark because they want to buy or sell, which includes their labor and services at work to their employers, not just product and service purchases in stores (verse 17).

Another clue to what the mark of the beast actually is comes from the fact that people who obey God's law DO NOT receive it.


and those who worship the beast and his image, and all who receive the mark of his name, have no rest day and night. 12. Here is the patience of the saints; here are the ones who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. (Revelation 14:11-12)

Those who reject the mark of the beast are in a different group than those keeping God's commandments. (See also Revelation 15:2-3). Satan will attack those true Christians who are keeping God's commandments (Revelation 12:17).

A mark or sign identifies who someone is or what something is such as a logo or trademark of a corporation. Notice that God's sign (keeping the commandments and Jesus' faith) is opposed to the Beast's mark. Exodus 32 and verse 13 says that the Biblical Sabbath (the seventh day of the week) is a "sign" between God and His people. Furthermore, God's law is considered to be on people's foreheads (Deuteronomy 6:1, 6-8) and hands (Deuteronomy 11:18; Exodus 13:9). Which of God's Ten Commandments are the most ignored? Which one can most people be easily deceived over since it can't be argued that its exists by natural law reasoning? It is the fourth commandment. People either say that Jesus abolished it or that it was transferred to Sunday from Saturday. The Catholic Church even boasts that, by its own authority, it changed the Sabbath to Sunday and that all Protestants are doing is following their lead. In Daniel 7:25 a prophecy is given that the little horn, which represents the end time false church, will want to change times and laws. In this case, they changed the law concerning the time of the Sabbath rest without Biblical authorization. The Bible warns that whoever breaks one of God's Commandments is considered to be as bad as one breaking all of them (James 2:10-12).

Given the evidence above, we are lead to the conclusion that the breaking of God's law, especially His seventh-day Sabbath rest, is the mark of the Beast. It will be enforced by the civil government, just like other religious-based or related laws have and are enforced today. For example, still in force in certain parts of the United States are what are called "blue laws" that forbid stores to open on Sundays or forbid the selling of alcohol before noon Sunday. Even now, in mostly secularized France, the government's laws make many stores close their doors on Sundays.

In conclusion

People should not needless worry mainly about implanted computer chips and mandatory credit cards as the actual mark of the Beast. If a future dictatorial government, in Europe or America, uses them, they will merely help to enforce the religious laws of the "universal" church.

The Sabbath is hard for many people to observe because it threatens their jobs and their standard of living. Keeping the Sabbath means they cannot sell their labor services to employers starting from Friday night until Saturday night. The mark of the beast is associated with buying and selling (Revelation 13:17). The true Sabbath, based on an literal interpretation of Exodus 20:8-11, is a sign that interferes with buying and selling in the world. In like manner, when the counterfeit Sabbath (Sunday) is required to be observed by the end time Beast, it too will interfere with buying and selling. Just before Jesus' return, the keeping of a seventh-day Sabbath, in obedience to God, will be the mark that identifies true Christians. The mark that identities those deceived by the devil, however, will be Sunday worship.




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 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:24 PM   IP              
What is the DESTINY
of the United States of America?

What is the DESTINY of America? The United States is arguably one of the most powerful, and the richest of, world powers in history. America ranks ninth as one of the greatest empires in history based on total land controlled. She is considered one of the top five greatest sea powers of all time. Not surprisingly, the U.S. is easily the wealthiest empire ever to exist based on both its GDP (gross domestic product) and its percentage of world GDP.

The U.S., after the collapse of the Soviets, became the only nation capable of extending its military power anywhere on the planet. The massive spending by America on its military accounts for 41% of the world total! China is a very distant second with just over 8% of the world's total military spending, with Russia (4%) and both the United Kingdom and France (both at 3.6%) rounding out the top five. The U.S. military budget is so BIG that it is greater than the total military spending of the the next ten ranking nations combined.

Is it America's destiny to FALL?

Despite its superiority, could America FALL as a world power like the Babylonians, Persians, Romans, Spanish or British? Even more striking, could it NOW be in a state of decline leading to its ultimate COLLAPSE? Glubb Pasha, in his book The Fate of Empires, writes that world powers throughout history experience many similar cultural developments and life cycles in terms of their birth, expansion, rise to power, maturity and decline. In general, these seven stages in terms of "ages" are Pioneers, Conquests, Commerce, Affluence, Intellect, Decadence and the final stage or age of Decline and ultimate Collapse.

In the first few stages of an empire, its pioneers propel it to power as it expands its territory by conquest. Later, the materialistic values of business begin to assert their influence in the fourth and fifth stages (or ages) of empire building. Instead of acquiring more territory to expand their influence, world empires during this period build up their defensives. A good example of this would be China's Great Wall.

Wealth collected through conquest and investments by the business community make possible institutions of learning such as colleges and schools. The intellectual age of empires produces those who start to disbelieve and question the values of those who founded the very empire they live in!

Over time the elites of society and the people in general reject their founder's self-sacrificing values that helped create the empire. Moral decay begins to set in due to the morally corrosive affects of prosperity. The empire grows more and more weak, becoming less and less able to combat the destructive forces that work to bring it down.

The stage of America's empire


Has America entered the last phase or two of its empire? Is there a relationship of its values and culture with other former world powers, such as the Roman Empire before they collapsed?


Who are considered, for example, heroes in the United States and what does this list tell us about the values of its society? America, for quite some time, has looked up to and admired famous celebrities - be they in sports, music, television and alike. In the first phases of building a world power the empire's explorers and early pioneers are looked up to and highly valued. During the ages of commerce and wealth (affluence) those who are successful in business are admired. During the age of Intellect those with advanced degrees and who are considered intellectuals are prized.

During the final stages of empire people idolize and look up to sports athletes, actors, etc. in spite of their (many times) messed up personal lives. For example, Pasha found in Baghdad, during the 10th century decline of the Arab Abbasid empire, that many writers complained of how singers were corrupting their youth!

Warning signs of an empire in decline

In a fascinating book entitled When the Empire Strikes Out, authors Pasha and Goetz delineate some of the hallmark features and characteristics of an empire in decline.

The first few characteristics of a world empire that is in the process of falling is the erosion of sexual standards, the preference of people to live together rather than marry, and a growing rate of divorce. Birth rates decline and the killing of babies (today we call it abortion) increases due the size of families being limited.

Another feature of a declining power is the influx of foreigners into the empire. The diversity they bring ultimately becomes a divisive issue in the culture.

The spirit the apostle Paul discusses in 1Corinthians 15 also begins to take hold of a falling empire.


"Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die." (verse 32)

When people in a society begin to give up trying to find solutions to life's difficulties they turn to time-wasting pleasures such as taking drugs, drinking alcohol, sex and entertainment that is ultimately mindless.

One last major warning sign of decline occurs when the government provides expansive welfare programs for the poor. In the city of Rome, for example, the citizens were kept happy and distracted by government-sponsored bread and entertainment at the Colosseum ('bread and circuses'). Although helping the poor is part of being Christian, it can at times encourage people to be lazy and not work.

Destiny of decline for America

The above and other evidence points to the inevitable conclusion that America is currently in the declining phase of its power and empire. Some indicators, however, are not yet as bad as they have been in previous world powers that fell.

The ultimate question for believers in the Bible is how should Christians respond to this situation? Believers living in declining empires should redouble their work in warning the world's nations (Matthew 24:14) about what will happen if they do not repent of their sins. Christians should also be wary of adopting, in their own lives, the negative beliefs and practices they warn others not to adopt. As the apostle Peter stated to those on Pentecost, believers must make every effort to save themselves from the corrupt society in which they live (Acts 2:38-40). This is especially true in America, where the destiny of the United States is decline.


Political Map of the World
http://www.biblestudy.org/maps/poli...-the-world.html

God, Whose Love Is Always Stronger
   
today
Administrator

Posts: 17162
Registered: Mar 2009
 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:26 PM   IP              
Map of the Middle East

Fast Facts on select Middle East countries

Israel has a total land and water area of 20,770 square kilometers and is slightly bigger than the state of New Jersey. Both the Gaza Strip and what is called the West Bank are occupied by the state of Israel. Their status is subject to an Interim Agreement. The West Bank, with a total area of 2,262 square miles (5,860 square kilometers), is the larger of the two areas comprising the Palestinian territories. In 1950 the state of Israel declared that Jerusalem was its capital, but the United States and many other countries around the world do not maintain an embassy in the city but rather have one in Tel Aviv.

Jordan has a total land and water area of 89,342 square kilometers, which is ranked 112th in the world. The country is a little smaller than the state of Indiana. Its population is 6,482,081. Jordan's ecomony is one of the smallest in the Middle East.

Kuwait has a total land and water area of 17,818 square kilometers, which makes it somewhat smaller than the state of New Jersey. Though the nation is relatively small, it contains the world's seventh largest proven reserves of crude oil. It also has the world's largest budget surplus in terms of GDP.

Syria has a total land and water area of 185,180 square kilometers, making it a little bigger than the state of North Dakota. The country has one of the greatest budget deficits in the world based on GDP.

Turkey has a total land and water area of 783,562 square kilometers, which is ranked 37th in the world. It has a total population of 80,694,485 people. It is the world's tenth largest importer of natural gas.

Yemen has a total land and water area of 527,968 square kilometers, which is a little more than double the size of the state of Wyoming. The country depends on its declining oil reserves for 70% of its revenue.


World Rank of Internet Users
for select countries
(2009)

15 - Turkey - 27,233,000

21 - Egypt - 20,136,000

30 - Saudi Arabia - 9,774,000

35 - Iran - 8,214,000

51 - Israel - 4,525,000

52 - Syria - 4,469,000

World Rank of Internet Hosts
for select countries
(2012)

16 - Turkey - 7,093,000

36 - Israel - 2,483,000

59 - Georgia - 357,864

61 - United Arab Emirates - 337,804

71 - Egypt - 200,430

72 - Iran - 197,804
http://www.biblestudy.org/maps/map-...iddle-east.html

God, Whose Love Is Always Stronger
   
today
Administrator

Posts: 17162
Registered: Mar 2009
 Posted May 18th, 2014 02:41 PM   IP              
FCC votes to go forward with ‘net neutrality’ rules


By BREE FOWLER

| The Associated Press


First Published May 15 2014 06:24 pm • Last Updated May 15 2014 07:37 pm

New York • The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday voted to go forward with the proposal of new rules that could set standards for Internet providers who wish to create paid priority fast lanes on their networks.

The preliminary vote, in which three of agency’s commissioners supported the measure and two dissented, moves the so-called "net neutrality" rules into a formal public comment period. After the 120-day period ends, the FCC will revise the proposal and vote on a final set of rules. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has said he wants the rules in place by the end of this year.

FCC votes to go forward with ‘net neutrality’ rules


By BREE FOWLER

| The Associated Press


First Published May 15 2014 06:24 pm • Last Updated May 15 2014 07:37 pm

New York • The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday voted to go forward with the proposal of new rules that could set standards for Internet providers who wish to create paid priority fast lanes on their networks.

The preliminary vote, in which three of agency’s commissioners supported the measure and two dissented, moves the so-called "net neutrality" rules into a formal public comment period. After the 120-day period ends, the FCC will revise the proposal and vote on a final set of rules. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has said he wants the rules in place by the end of this year.
http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/world/...c-vote.html.csp

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