LOOKOUT FOR THE BEAST OF TRIBULATION; HE IS AND IS NOT
by Dr. Henderson Ward 6/13/2012 / Prophecy
The quotation attributed to Abraham Lincoln that talks about fooling some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, etc is incomplete. He should have added "but you can fool a lot of people all the time" and the quote would have been more comprehensive.
A lot of people are being fooled not because they are cognitively inferior but because there is a strong tendency in humans to find solace in the herd instinct. And when the stampede is heading for the precipice individual thought and action are like rabbits standing in the way; frightfully counterproductive.
This was brought home to me in the sixties when a huge section of the American public was deluded by religious fundamentalists into believing that the Soviet Union was the eschatological Beast of Tribulation from who would emerge the Anti-Christ ushering in Armageddon and the end of time. As is often the reality of misguided and befuddled prognosticators the Soviet Union collapsed and its disparate constituents enthusiastically threw off communism with its atheist creed and fully embraced monotheism.
This left the Soviet-Union-is-the-Beast-of-Tribulation purveyors in a state of spiritual apoplexy as they scramble around in heightened misanthropy choosing their next target. Some of them apply this appellation to Iran and some to China and others to whichever country caught their fancy. These are the flat-earthers, the existential dinosaurs and ecclesiastical suicide bombers and in truth are so far on the noisy periphery that they are virtually in another world and we can well afford to ignore them.
Those on the other hand who affirm with unbreakable conviction that the Pope/Roman Catholic Church is the Beast of Tribulation are neither peripheral in their theology nor marginal in their influence and must be commended for their scholarship. But they are wrong and need to reexamine their interpretations.
Many serious theological thinkers agree that the eschatological Beast of Tribulation from who would emerge the Anti-Christ, the person that will end up killing billions of people, will be from or be part of the revised Roman Empire.
They say that the devil is in the details and in this scenario of the end-times beast the bamboozlement lay in biblical hermeneutics. The revised Roman Empire is taken by many to extend in a linear direction and at some point will repeat that which it has already experienced; hence the Pope and Roman Catholicism. Not so. The revised Roman Empire will extend and mutate not existentially as before but in kind; morally bankrupt, spiritually dead and theologically secular.
In the book One Minute to Midnight on God's Clock (listed below) in chapter eighteen the author lays out compelling reasons backed by scriptures why the eschatological Beast of Tribulation is not the Pope. People need to examine for themselves the truth of these assertions and for once defy the herd instinct and reason for themselves.
The Roman Empire will never be revised in the context of a sovereign nation because scripture makes it clear that the Roman Empire was the final world empire where one sovereign country ruled the civilized world and every attempt to revive it has dismally failed.
There were two powerful attempts to revive the Roman Empire and both have failed because they didn't understand the deterministic nature of Bible prophecies. Both of these attempts were made by French men and this is powerfully significant.
The first real, credible, and powerful attempt was made by the Frenchman called Charlemagne (Charles I of France), who at the time was king of the Franks. History shows that Charlemagne was incredibly successful in conquering much of western and central Europe, including France, Germany, and Italy, but his efforts failed and the revived Roman Empire never emerged.
The next credible attempt was made by another Frenchman of more recent vintage called Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France and king of Italy, who was enormously successful in conquering and dominating much of continental Europe as he successfully fought nearly all European powers. His demise came when, at the height of his power, he threw his mighty army against Russia, was soundly defeated, and forced to abdicate; so his grand scheme of the revived Roman Empire came to nothing.
The third and final attempt to revive the Roman Empire came from another Frenchman, but this time he was sufficiently perceptive to know a revived Roman Empire could not take place based on the Roman paradigm of one sovereign country. He put together an entity that would imitate the Roman Empire in many aspects but made sure the entity was multinational. The Frenchman was President Giscard of France, who, along with Chancellor Schmidt of Germany, formed a multinational entity in 1975 that would later be called the Group of Seven (G7) nations.
It is imperative to be extremely cautious when examining prophecies and trying to tie them in to contemporary situations. The G7 nations may turn out to be just another blip or it could morph into a totally different (benign) organization. However, in examining end time events in the light of prevailing circumstances the G7 nations is the eschatological Beast of Tribulation and you can check this for yourself by reading the chapter in the book.
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Dr. Henderson Ward received his Doctor of Divinity in theology, with distinction, from Masters International School of Divinity, USA, where he is currently a post-doctoral fellow. Dr. Ward's career involved pastoring, evangelism, and teaching. Copyright 2013