This is part two, a continuation of the article entitled “There Will Stand Up A King Fierce in Countenance.”
When Jesus walked the earth he revealed that Satan the Devil is the real ruler of the world. In fact, Satan himself boasted of that very fact when tempting Christ to worship him. The account of the matter is recorded in the fourth chapter of Luke:
“So he brought him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the inhabited earth in an instant of time; and the Devil said to him: ‘I will give you all this authority and the glory of them, because it has been delivered to me, and to whomever I wish I give it. You, therefore, if you do an act of worship before me, it will all be yours.’ In reply Jesus said to him: “It is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.’””
Although, as the Devil said, all the kingdoms of the world have been delivered to him (temporarily), God has never abdicated his own throne.
That is evident from the occasions when Jehovah has intervened in human affairs; for example, when Cyrus overthrew Babylon and allowed the captive Jews to go free, which God had foretold two hundred-years in advance – before the Jews even went into captivity! Or when a thousand years before that Jehovah crushed Pharaoh and his army of crack charioteers under the surging waters of the Red Sea, achieving the same result of liberating a captive people.
Ultimately, because he is Almighty and Wise, God always accomplishes his purpose. There is nothing any human or demon can do to prevent it. God even foretells long in advance the things that will take place.
But for anyone interested in the truth, the fact of the matter is: The world inhabiting this beautiful blue sphere has been the primary focal point of conflict between God and Satan for the past several thousand years. And all indications are the conflict is about to heat up.
The Hebrew word from which Satan is derived means opposer – resister. And he has resisted and opposed God from the beginning. The good news is: It is only a temporary situation. The bad news is: It is going to get much worse before it’s over. That is because there is a final, decisive battle that is destined to be waged on the symbolic battlefield known as Armageddon. And leading up to the end of Satan’s domination is the tumultuous period variously designated in the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures as “the time of the end,” the “final part of the days,” the “conclusion of the system of things” and the “last days.”
What is to occur in the end phase leading up to the war at Armageddon?
As pointed out in the previous article, an angel revealed to Daniel that he had assisted the king of Persia in behalf of Daniel’s people and fought against the prince of the royal realm. The prince of the royal realm could not have been a human prince. No man can successfully resist a superhuman angel. Why, one angel was once dispatched who slaughtered an entire encamped army that Satan had maneuvered to destroy Jehovah’s city during the reign of the Judean king, Hezekiah. No, the prince of Persia was spirit in nature – a demon prince operating under the authority of Satan.
Although the demons are disposed to completely tyrannize the human race, and certainly now have the means at their disposal to destroy virtually all life on the entire planet, Jehovah will not allow it. As in the case of the renowned, God-fearing, Oriental named Job, God permitted the malevolent Devil to bring all manner of hardship upon him, but disallowed Satan from taking his life. On a broader scale God allows Satan to use human rulers to oppress and enslave, but apparently, as in the case described in Daniel, the angels have intervened to ensure that God’s purpose ultimately succeeds – no doubt in ways we are not even unaware. Although the demons have misled mankind to develop the means to blow up the whole world, again, God will not allow it – even as Christ stated in regard to the oncoming great tribulation: ‘Unless those days were cut short no flesh would be saved. But on account of the chosen ones those days will be cut short.’
As an expression of his rule over mankind Satan has moved power-hungry men to establish great empires. When Jesus walked the earth the Roman Empire controlled the affairs of men and nations in the Mediterranean region. Roman soldiers were used to arrest and execute Jesus. Later Christ’s followers were persecuted and also put to death by the Caesars who sat upon Satan’s throne in Rome. Although not recorded in the Bible it is implied that the apostle Paul was also executed on orders from Caesar.
In time, though, Satan’s agents successfully infiltrated and subverted Christ’s congregation from within, so that a few centuries after Christ established his holy congregation on earth it became the official religion of the Roman Empire and was ruled over by the emperor of Rome himself. Thus, Christendom was born.
And as all of Jehovah’s Witnesses surely know, over the centuries various aspects of paganism were fused into Christianity. As the political empire fragmented, so did Christendom, splintering into various warring blocks such as Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, Catholicism, Anglicanism, Protestantism – but none of them teaching the truth.
As an example of Satan’s opposition to the truth, for centuries the Roman Catholic Church, as well its more recent Anglo offshoot, the Church of England, forbade any translation of the Bible from Latin. Any who dared to defy the pope or king of England were considered the worst sort of criminals. But with the invention of the printing press Bibles in various languages could be mass-produced, and the Vatican and the king of England eventually relented and authorized their own versions, so that when the peoples of Europe set out to colonize the newfound world, colonists distributed the Bible in numerous languages far and wide.
Can it be a coincidence that dozens of Bible societies sprang up in England and America in the 1800’s, at the very time the British Empire was growing to dominant the world to a greater extent than any previous empire and causing English to become the second language of millions of people around the earth; thus, laying the foundation for the work of the Bible Students and especially Jehovah’s Witnesses today? Spain and other colonial powers accomplished the same thing in other parts of the world.
And as for America, with a vast ocean between the Pilgrims and the lords and popes of Christendom, religious freedom and freedom of speech were greatly valued and enshrined by the founders for future generations. Could it be that God really did bless America in a sense, just as in the case of the angel who once stood as a strengthener of the king of Persia until the purpose of God was accomplished?
Without a hint of nationalistic pride or patriotism the answer is obviously yes. But, again, it is only temporary, until such time as Christ concludes his Father’s business in our age. (See Downfall of America)
Unquestionably, the developments of the preceding centuries have provided the favorable environment for the Watchtower Bible Society to effectively train and equip an army of ministers, who have displayed a similar spirit as the first-century evangelizers, who have declared the name of Jehovah throughout the earth and distributed the Bible to receptive people on a scale heretofore unknown – the New World Translation now being available in over 100 languages and Bible literature in an astounding 439 languages!
But with the truth comes accountability. As the Gospel of John states in connection with Christ: ‘The light came into the world, but men loved the darkness rather than the light.’ Thus, the concluding period will be a time of judgment – of Christians first and then the nations.
Since the reign of Alexander the Great up until now the dominant political and economic power has existed in Europe, with the exception of the breakaway United States of America, which is really an extenuation of European culture. And consequently Christendom has been an appendage of the empire.
Two ghastly “world wars” devastated much of Europe in the first half of the 20th century – wars fomented for the purpose of perpetuating London’s domination.
As indicated in the article linked to the previous hyperlink, from the early 1900’s, and even before with the creation of the Fabian Society, London’s scheme has been to infiltrate and seize control of the levers of power within America and use it as their “dumb giant” to perpetuate the power of the European oligarchy. (See – King of the North) This has largely been accomplished at this point, as even the formidable American military machine, including its vast nuclear arsenal, has come increasingly under control of London.
No doubt because Satan is the unseen ruler there has always been a burning ambition within the hearts of a clique of European aristocratic families to establish a world government as the means to effectively destroy the nation-state, Westphalian system, which God has ostensibly used up to this point. (Remember, Paul stated that God had placed the “superior authorities” of Satan’s world in their relative positions to facilitate his work.)
By destroying the present political and economic system Satan can then remove all the protections that God has put in place in order that he might viciously persecute and kill God’s people. The prophecies indicate that Satan will be permitted to do that in the finale, even as Revelation 12:17 foretells: “And the dragon grew wrathful at the woman, and went off to wage war with the remaining ones of her seed, who observe the commandments of God and have the work of bearing witness to Jesus.”
With the ongoing Euro Zone crisis in the news on a daily basis, how did Europe come to be in the situation in which it finds itself today?
Europe has certainly experienced more than its share of violent revolutions, financial collapse, fascism, genocide and war.
After the Great War of 1914-1918, London imposed impossible war reparations upon Germany, which led to the hyperinflationary destruction of the Reichsmark in 1923 and the immiseration of the German people, which paved the way for the rise of Hitler and the Nazi party.
But whereas the Nazis failed to bring Europe under fascism then, after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union, in the face of the reunification of London’s long-time continental nemesis – Germany – London first foisted the Maastricht Treaty upon Europe and then more recently the Lisbon Treaty, in a scheme to bind the nations into an artificial union intended to override national sovereignties and ultimately impose a fascist dictatorship over all of Europe and the world.
Coincident with the establishment of the Euro Zone, London launched an assault upon the nations via unregulated, vulture capitalism.
That the destruction of independent nations is the intended goal of binding the nations of Europe into a union has been made abundantly evident in the events that have recently played out in Greece. Under demands of the bankers and other creditors of Greece for more and more austerity, the political leaders of the nation have revealed themselves to be mere cowering debt collectors, working to squeeze out from the people a fictitious debt claimed by the financiers. (No doubt there are behind-the-scenes, mafia-connected enforcer goons, whose job it is to intimidate and terrify politicians into submission.)
And, of course, as of this writing Greece is no longer the focus of international consternation. Spain is. Wait, today, June 12th, Italy is back under the gun. Soon it will come back around to Greece as the last semblance of democracy holds an election. Call it the “crisis du jour.”
In view of the fact that the nations of Europe are the remnants of the former Roman Empire, it is very significant that Europe is also ground zero for the now-exploding debt crisis.
Now consider the prophecies, if you please.
As stated already in part one, think of the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation as being snapshots of the same development, but from various angles; realizing too, the Bible is not a history book, but is only intended to reveal Jehovah’s judgments in connection with the establishment of Christ upon the throne of God. God is not trying to impress anyone with prophetic parlor tricks.
The seventh chapter of Daniel relates a vision of four beasts, with the last beast being unusually ferocious, as it tramples and crushes everything. Jehovah’s Witnesses understand the four beasts to represent the four kingdoms that have succeeded each other, beginning with Babylon. The fourth beast represents the Roman Empire and what has developed from it.
According to Daniel’s account, the beast has ten horns, but another horn springs up – an 11th horn. And it proceeds to supplant three of the ten horns and grow to become greater than the ten. And the ascending little horn has the eyes of a man and a mouth speaking grandiose things.
What is signified by the three horns that are plucked out by the little horn?
For many decades the Watchtower has claimed that the prophecy was gradually fulfilled over the course of several centuries, beginning with the disaster that befell the Spanish Armada in 1588! The three horns are believed to have been Spain, France and the Netherlands. The 11th horn is thought to have been the British Empire, which was indeed victorious in numerous naval battles and gained considerable territorial concessions from its colonial rivals during the period of its ascendancy.
However, the Watchtower makes no attempt to reconcile their interpretation with the facts of history, such as the fact that France has been a major world power in its own right since the time it was supposedly supplanted. For example, as a member of the exclusive nuclear club of the victors of the last world war, France possesses more nuclear warheads than even Great Britain. And, of course, Spain is considered a great nation today too.
And as for the supposed demise of the Netherlands, the Anglo-Dutch-Swiss financier oligarchy presently wields great power over the nations by means of their control over food production and global distribution.
Serious Bible students should consider why, if the prophecy of Daniel is sealed up until the time of the end, and even supposing the time of the end began in 1914, that God would reveal matters related to the prophecy that had already occurred centuries before and are now little more than historical footnotes?
By their hackneyed interpretations the Watchtower Society has effectively rendered a significant portion of prophecy into obscurity. Worse, their approach portrays God as being the Reveler of relatively insignificant historical trivia, as if such happenings were monumental events relative to the establishment of his kingdom over mankind. But it must also be assumed that the blindness imposed upon Jehovah’s Witnesses will ultimately contribute to the sanctification of God as the Revealer of secrets.
More reasonably, the plucking out of the three horns is portraying the same event as the death-stroke upon the head of the beast of Revelation and the bringing to ruin of the mighty ones by a king fierce in countenance, and the victory of the king of the north over the king of the south. (Keep in mind the king of the north will also subject three nations – Egypt, Libya and Ethiopia.)
Now consider another common theme of the prophecies; namely, the arrogance and blasphemy of the last kingdom and its opposition to God and Christ and their holy ones on earth.
The 13th chapter of Revelation portrays a seven-headed beast, which is merely a combination of the previous empires, going back even before Babylon; all the way back to Egypt and Assyria. It too also has ten horns. Another commonalty is that the beast will speak great things against God and persecute the holy ones for three and a half years. And according to Revelation that situation comes about after one of the heads of the beast receives a sword stroke and then revives. The 17th chapter of Revelation indicates that after the beast recovers from its mortal wound it becomes an eighth king.
The king fierce in countenance is also portrayed as a little horn that comes up during the time of the end and it puts on great airs, so that it even confronts the Prince of princes and destroys his holy place…
To be continued…