he Bible teaches about a time when GOD will sharply escalate his dealings with unrepentant mankind - and a time when He will reckon with His servants. Ironically, the specific period when God inaugurates the Reckoning is almost universally taught to be a time when He will do the exact opposite of what the scriptures actually tell us He will do.
In what may very well be the greatest tragedy of the last two centuries, the dispensational theorists have seized the reins of leadership in the "church" and as they have consolidated their power, they have widely programmed millions of church attendees into believing in something called the "rapture." The great irony of this is found in the fact that many of the verses put forth to describe the so-called "rapture" actually describe an event that may more appropriately be dubbed the Reckoning.
Not The Second Coming
One of the most common errors seen in prophetic studies is our apparent propensity to consolidate many passages into the same event - especially when such a compression is unwarranted by the text. Thus, when we see a verse that describes the wrath of God, many simply say this is the same thing as the second coming.
Others, in seeking to "rightly divide the word of truth," 1. arbitrarily assume the "wrath" spoken of in a tribulational context, is the second "half" of a theoretical seven-year tribulation. Because the doctrine of a seven-year great tribulation is itself false, the assignment of the passages dealing with the "wrath of God" 2. into a portion of this faultily derived seven-year period then compounds the error.
Thus, error exponentially engenders further error until the prophetic chronology that is specified in scripture becomes so completely convoluted that retrieving basic truth becomes a Herculean task. The largest single offender in this babelistic bovine eskatology of the modern church is the false doctrine of dispensationalism - also known as the rapture cult.
Lest we offend the cultists with the erroneous assumption that in slashing the false doctrine of pretribulationism we're propagating preterism or some abstract and non-literal form of the second coming, I'll hasten to state that Jesus Christ IS coming back in our time. Furthermore, He IS coming back physically, just as the angels stated at His ascension, "this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven" 3.
The real question is not only WHEN is He coming back, but WHOM is He coming back to retrieve, and "what shall be the sign of [His] coming, and of the end of the world?" 4.
A Great Dividing
For many years, prophecy teachers have offered various interpretations concerning the numerous verses that speak of a great dividing. Multiple accounts in the New Testament speak of this in the dividing of the sheep and the goats, 5. the separation of the wheat and the tares, 6. and the splitting of the ten virgins into two groups - the latter metaphor describing the five virgins that were foolish and the five virgins that were said to be wise. 7.
This great division has been placed all over the prophetic timetable. Some have assigned this event to the supposed pre-tribulational rapture, while others place it at the second coming of Christ. Still others place this dividing far into the future at the end of the millennium, the 1,000-year reign of Christ here on the Earth.
Although these passages can be applied very broadly as a way of describing the progressive division of the saved from the unsaved, they also have a very specific location in the prophetic timeline. Perhaps the most pivotal description is found in the Olivet Discourse where Jesus Christ likens "the days of the Son of man" 8. to the days of Noah. 9.
Although this fascinating passage is still being widely taught to be descriptive of the false doctrine of the rapture cult, a close look at these verses shows something entirely different. Immediately after characterizing His return to be "as it was in the days of Noe," 10. Jesus tells us:
"For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the son of man be. Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left [behind]." 11.
This astonishing segment of scripture has been used for decades to propagate the cult theology that is personified by the catch phrase "left behind." A literary bonanza, the Left Behind series of novels has spawned a lucrative cottage industry of films, videos, comic books, tracts, greeting cards, and more. The commercial aspect of the now trademarked term has been amply demonstrated to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Unfortunately, the entire foundation is based on the false doctrine of the rapture cult, and in the process, literally tens of millions of "believers" have been subtly channeled into the Antichrist theological system.
The Lie That Is Left Behind
The basic premise of the rapturist dogma is those that are "taken" in Christ's descriptive scenario will be "raptured" to be with Him and avoid the horrors of the Antichrist and the tribulation. Concurrently, those that are "left behind" have a second chance at paradise with Christ, but the requirements for salvation at that point shift to a gospel that requires martyrdom.
The people ensnared in this false system don't recognize the intrinsic fact that the 'left behind' scenario requires the commencement of another gospel that is initiated for those that miss 'the rapture bus.' While it should be self evident the scriptures only speak in the singular term concerning "the glorious gospel of Christ," 12. the rapture cult carefully couches their language by seeking to characterize this time period as another "dispensation" - as opposed to a time when believers are supposed to embrace "another gospel."
By explaining that after the so-called "rapture" occurs, the "economy" of salvation is now focused on Jewish redemption and thus more closely resembles the Old Testament system of works, rapturists claim the tribulation gospel is actually the same "gospel." Others say we now preach "the gospel of Christ," 13. but during the tribulation, that 144,000 Israelite Christians, now miraculously converted, will preach "the gospel of the kingdom." 14. It should be self evident the 'second chance gospel' that is supposedly offered to those that have been left behind, requires a martyrdom coupled with a Jewish supremacism that is obviously not the same gospel as the classically defined experience of being born-again in Jesus Christ.
Worse yet, the rapture cult has completely distorted these essential words of Jesus Christ concerning the events that will precede His return - and in the process, they have placed vast numbers of "believers" into the position where they are expecting to be evacuated. The truth is, most of these alleged believers are about to begin the most horrific experience of their entire lives. In short, instead of the rapture, the reckoning is about to begin.
You Want To Be Left Behind
When Christ described the conditions precedent to His return as being similar to "the days of Noe [Noah]," 15. He made a clear-cut analogy to the conditions of the time of the great flood. The picture is one of the world hurtling towards an enormous devastation with the overwhelming majority of people completely unaware of the reckoning that is about to occur.
The Lord tells us how the people "...bought, they sold, they planted, they builded...they did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage....and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away...." 16.
Please note how the ones that were taken away were destroyed - not evacuated. Indeed, Luke's account reads "and the flood came, and destroyed them all." 17. Although I've actually heard lying preachers intentionally try to twist the Lord's words by saying 'the ark got taken away,' Jesus makes it perfectly clear that it was those that "knew not" that the flood was coming that were taken away. Obviously, Noah and his family knew the flood was coming, so those that were taken away and subsequently destroyed were those that were living life as usual - eating, drinking, and marrying, etc. Such activities infer a broad cross-section of society that has no idea they are in enormous peril - or they simply do not believe the peril they have been told about is genuine.
Thus, when Jesus described "two men in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left," 18. He was plainly describing a judgment that is so discriminating and focused that it kills only one of two people in the same bed. When "two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left," 19. the death that sweeps away the one that is taken will kill one and leave the other in close proximity unscathed.
As if to make certain the disciples understood the meaning of this incredible prophecy, in Luke's rendition, we read how the disciples said unto him, "Where, Lord?" 20. It is apparent they were asking Him where the ones that were taken had gone. His answer was "Wheresoever the body is, thither [there] will the eagles be gathered together." 21. In short, Christ responds that wherever there is a dead body, is where the eagles [read carrion, or vultures] will be "gathered together." In what has now become a colloquial expression, the LORD is simply saying 'if you want to know where a dead body is, look for the vultures.'
Furthermore, there is simply no other coherent explanation for this analogy. The fact is, if we reverse the application and try to make those that were taken away a rescue, the analogy is wildly inaccurate. This would show an errancy in the scriptural account - something we cannot accept as "the words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times" 22. Along this same line of thought, I've learned that it is a spiritually deadly proposition to attempt to force the scriptures to conform to any interpretation. It's supposed to be the other way around. Thus, the analogy plainly tells us those that were "left behind" are the ones that were designated as worthy of survival.
It is worth noting at this juncture that it is because of the emotional and psychological process that begins when a rapture adherent reads material like this that I commonly refer to the rapture theology as a cult. To put it bluntly, these verses provide the 'smoking gun' evidence that the "left behind" teaching is a fraud - yet the majority of so called "Christians" value the truth so little, they will inevitably reject this most basic understanding because of their conditioning. It is, therefore, appropriate to ask 'is not such irrational behaviour a classic characteristic of a cult?'
In The Days Of The Son Of Man
Since the scriptures plainly indicate this passage does not describe the supposed pre-tribulational rapture, we are compelled to ponder just what it does describe. We might think it is the second coming of Christ - which He tells us will occur "immediately after the tribulation of those days," 23. however, there are so many verses that contradict this idea that a studied analysis indicates that this 'two men out in the field' destruction is something other than the second coming.
For example, at the return of Christ the scriptures describe it as an event in which He will "gather together his elect from the four winds..." 24. The concept of "gathering" is in sharp contrast to a description of those that are suddenly and abruptly "taken away" and destroyed. Ironically, many of the verses that are used to describe the alleged pre-tribulation rapture actually describe the LORD's gathering of His remnant believers at the end of the tribulation. In short, the so-called "rapture" is actually the second coming.
In I Thessalonians 4 we find one of the classic narratives:
"For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first; Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lord." 25.
This verse only hints at the conditions that will be precedent when Jesus returns, but when Paul writes about those that will "remain" he is definitely speaking of the remnant - a word that firmly implies that a much larger portion of the original whole has now been removed. Thus, since the translation of the believer (usually referred to by the term "rapture") occurs "immediately after the tribulation," and those believers that are "changed" into their immortal state are said to be those that "remain," a steep reduction in the original numbers must have previously occurred.
We get more information in the corollary verse describing Christ's raising of the dead, and the changing of the remnant into our resurrection bodies, when Paul writes:
"Behold, I show you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." 26.
This verse ties the raising of the dead to "the last trump" - something that is found in Revelation at the end of the tribulational cycle. Once again, the scriptures plainly teach us that when Christ returns to catch us up to be with Him, it occurs at the end of the tribulation.
During the tribulation, there are seven angels with trumpets, and as each one blows his trumpet, the judgments progressively worsen. We see all green grass and a third of the trees burned up just at the first trumpet. The second trump has a giant meteor or comet impacting the sea killing marine life. The third trumpet causes fresh drinking water to be so polluted that it kills vast numbers of people, and the fourth trump even impacts the orbit of the moon and the length of the day - all devastating judgments creating enormous carnage and death.
By the time we get to "the last trump," the term remnant rather succinctly describes the survivors. Thus, when Paul speaks of those "which are alive and remain" 27. to the end of this hideous period, it is consistent with the description in Revelation. Furthermore, when Paul writes "Behold, I show you a mystery," 28. referring to those that will survive all the way to "the last trump," Revelation even pins that "mystery" to the seventh and "last trump" as well:
"But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets." 29.
All of these elements are also seen in the Olivet sermon that describes the real "rapture" - the second coming of Jesus Christ. There in Matthew 24 (and in the synoptic accounts in Luke 17 & 21), we find the angels involved in the gathering of God's elect. We see the last trumpet as well when Christ says "with a great sound of a trumpet they shall gather together his elect..." 30. And all of this shall occur "immediately after the tribulation of those days...." 31.
Another proof that the 'one taken, one left' episode does not occur at the second coming is found in a passage of Revelation describing the very end of the age. In Revelation 6, we find the same tribulational description wherein "the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood, and the stars of heaven fell unto the earth...." 32.
These are the same celestial devastations Jesus described as being post-tribulational when he stated "immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give its light, and the stars shall fall from heaven...." 33.
Back in Revelation, just as these things occur, the text tells us:
"And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand" 34.
It doesn't take much discernment to realize these people are absolutely terrified concerning the condition of the world, as they evidently realize that they have become the object of "the wrath of God" 35. This Revelational description also covers every class of person - rich men, bondmen (employees or slaves), free men, military men, royalty, etc. Thus, the contrast between the two scenarios (mankind cowering in caves, versus two women openly grinding at the mill) rather concisely indicates two different time periods are in view.
Let's review a few of these facts. We know the darkening of the sun and moon occurs "after the tribulation." 36. When those conditions occur, we find a wide cross-section of the world (rich men, bondmen, free men, kings, etc) in abject terror hiding from God's wrath.
This is in sharp contradistinction to the conditions when there will be "two [out in the open]...in the field" 37. - a setting that gives no indication of fear of the surrounding conditions. We see people that are "eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage" 38. and they don't seem to be terrified and hiding "in the dens and the rocks of the mountains." 39.
We see "two women grinding at the mill" 40. with no hint of concern over the imminent danger. The verses describe a world where "they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded" 41. and the picture is consistent in that these verses describe people that are completely unaware that they are about to be "cast ...into great tribulation..." 42. Because of this obvious delineation of circumstances, we conclude the 'eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage' episode must occur at some point before the tribulational events begin.
The indication is, this account of the sudden and unexpected destruction of individuals (one taken, one left) is very likely the inaugural event of the tribulation. Although the terms utilized that describe this epic occurrence are somewhat veiled, the scriptures do label this event as the reckoning.
Reckoning By Lineage
In the Old Testament, we find the word "reckon" is used as something of a synonym for "counted" or "numbered." It is used to describe numeric accounting situations as well as in monetary applications. For instance, in I Chronicles, we find a description of the sons of Issachar and the text tells us
"And their brethren among all the families of Issachar were valiant men of might, reckoned in all by their genealogies fourscore and seven thousand." 43.
There are numerous verses where the word "reckon," or "reckoned" is used, and many of them are associated with the political standing, or the inheritance that was to be received by the children of Israel. For example, I Chronicles records
"So all Israel were reckoned by genealogies; and, behold, they were written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah, who were carried away to Babylon for their transgression." 44.
The very Hebrew word that is translated "reckoned" that is used in these verses specifies an association with genealogy. Strong's Lexicon tells us this Hebrew word "yachas" (reckoned) means to "enroll by pedigree." In fact, the definition offered in the famous Hebrew dictionary edited by James Strong specifically mentions the term "genealogy" as part of its description. 45.
This "reckoning" in the Old Testament has to do with the reward the tribes received when God gave them their inheritance in the land that was to become Israel. The book of Numbers tells us "Unto these the land shall be divided for an inheritance according to the number of names." 46. Since Israel was "reckoned" by their genealogies, and an inheritance is based on receiving a reward based upon one's lineage - we see the use of "reckoning" is directly related to a recognition of whose family one belongs to.
In the famous passage in Isaiah 53 that plainly prophesies of Jesus Christ 700 years before His birth, we find some very important information that will ultimately impact our immediate prophetic future. Prophesying of the Messiah, Isaiah tell us
"He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him: and with his stripes we are healed.
"All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.....he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors." 47.
These are some of the most poignant and elegant words in the entire Bible. But there is a hidden clue in this passage that has bearing on our immediate future. In a revealing transliteration of this passage found in the New Testament, we find the disciples Mark and Luke both quoting from this passage. In his description of the crucifixion of Jesus, Mark quotes Isaiah:
"And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take. And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors." 48.
In a revealing glimpse behind the English translation, The word used for "numbered" here in Mark, is the same Greek word that is used elsewhere in the gospels for "reckoned." In fact, in the corollary verse in Luke, we find that Luke also quotes the verse in Isaiah about Jesus Christ being "numbered" with the transgressors, and uses the very same Greek word as Mark. However, in this passage, which has Jesus Christ identifying Himself as the fulfillment of the predictions in Isaiah, the translators rendered the verse as follows:
"for I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, and he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end." 49.
This interchangeability between the word numbered and reckoned brings to mind the well-known passage of the writing on the wall at the great banquet when Babylon fell. The reader will remember that fingers of a hand began to mysteriously write the words mene, mene, tekel, upharsin - which the prophet Daniel interpreted as numbered, numbered, weighed, divided. 50. The writing on the wall became the epitaph of Babylon as the military forces of the Persian Union came in that very night and slaughtered the king of Babylon and the attendees at the great party - but Daniel remained unharmed. 51.
With these verses, we see that the reckoning plainly has an association with judgment. Furthermore, in the modern timeline where we find voluminous numbers of "believers" that are expecting an evacuation even as they refuse the reproof of the scriptures which instead tell them the reckoning is about to occur, we will see massive "weeping and gnashing of teeth" 52. as this event comes to pass.
A Reckoning Among His Servants
In Ezekiel, we find the astonishing prophecy of the writer with the inkhorn. At the time of this prediction, the people of God had fallen into gross apostasy, and Ezekiel was carrying a stern warning from the LORD concerning a terrible reckoning that was to occur. Through Ezekiel, the Lord describes His judgment:
"...Cause them that have charge over the city to draw near, even every man with his destroying weapon in his hand. And, behold, six men came...and every man a slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer's inkhorn by his side....And the Lord said, Go through the midst of the city...and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.
"And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary." 53.
This amazing episode clearly puts forth the principle of a priestly figure providing the just with the path for preservation in anticipation of a ghastly judgment. In the immediate example, the writer with the inkhorn places a "mark" on those that are to be preserved. Those that were elected to be saved from this reckoning are said to be the ones "that sigh and that cry for all the abominations" that had overtaken God's covenant people.
It is worth noting that the individuals that were sealed so they would be spared the destruction were already vexed by the "abominations" that were all around them. To put it another way, they were not given a conditional promise - i.e. the prophet did not tell them, if you repent then the Lord will spare you. Those that were marked for salvation were already spontaneously grieved by the apostasy their people were engaged in.
Turning to another scriptural example of a reckoning, it should be obvious that the primary account of such a scenario is the Passover - the root of the original sacrificial covenant between God and man. In that wonderful historical epic of the children of Israel in Egypt, the Lord told the Israelites to
"...take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood...and none of you shall go out at the door of his house until the morning. For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you." 54.
This marking of the doorway of each house in order to be spared is a perfect picture of the blood of the lamb being the preserving element. As the angel of death passed over Egypt, he saw the blood daubed in the form of a cross (on the top and the two sides of the doorway) and thus the Passover was implemented.
What we see in each of these accounts is the judgment strikes very closely to the people of God, but those that are in accord with His plan are preserved. In the writer with the inkhorn judgment, it's worth noting that just being an Israelite did not guarantee redemption. Clearly, many Israelites were killed by the men with the "slaughter" weapons, whereas those that were preserved were those whose hearts were turned towards the LORD.
In the Passover account it is the same story. Moses was not told that all Israelite homes in Goshen would be preserved. He was instructed to relay God's instructions and only those that were in obedience to His will survived when the destroyer passed over Egypt.
So it will be in the reckoning in our time. To phrase it another way, just being a declared "Christian" is not going to protect those that profess to know Christ from the destroyer. This redemption belongs only to those that "take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." 55.
The Sealing Precedes The Reckoning
It should be somewhat obvious that a sealing that is used to preserve something is to be applied before the destruction begins. For instance, I built a deck outside of my mountain cabin, and I applied a water seal to protect the wood from the rainy season. Logic would dictate that one needs to get the seal on the deck before it starts to rain! So it is with the two examples of reckoning seen in the Old Testament that I just cited.
In Ezekiel's example, the writer with the inkhorn seals the Lord's servants before the men with the slaughter weapons begin their judgment. So too in the Passover account as the blood was applied to the lintel and the doorway before the destroyer passed over Egypt.
Closer to our time, the primary New Testament example of a sealing is seen in Revelation's description of the 144,000. In this enigmatic passage, the beloved Apostle John writes
"And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel." 56.
Although the modern church has widely bought the lie that these verses supposedly apply to a special group of physical Israelites that they believe will be set apart for a specific work after the "church" has been raptured, we have already concluded the pre-tribulation rapture is a complete fraud. Furthermore, the New Testament categorically teaches that the saved in this generation are "the remnant of Israel." 57.
Since "they are not all Israel, which are of Israel," 58. to suggest the Lord will provide a provisionary sealing for physical Jews during the tribulation with no mention of any comparable preservation for the Christians during the last time is inconsistent with the totality of scripture. Although space does not allow a thorough re-examination of the subject at this point, we must state unequivocally that the true remnant of Jesus Christ during the last generation is identified In the New Testament as "the Israel of God" 59. - a remnant of believers that is comprised of people that were formerly Jews and Gentiles - but are now to be forever identified under that eternal identity seen throughout the word of God as Israel. In short, the true Christians are the remnant of Israel (for a detailed examination of this indispensable truth, see The Remnant Of Israel by the present author).
There are priceless clues relative to the timing of the reckoning that may be calculated utilizing certain data associated with the sealing. In Revelation's description of the angelic sealing, we see the angel tells the four judgment angels "Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees" until we have sealed the LORD's tribulational servants. Because he mentions the "trees," there is a connection between this event and the first trumpet judgment - which commences in the very next chapter in Revelation.
In Revelation 8, the first trumpet inaugurates the tribulation with a fiery judgment wherein "hail and fire mingled with blood [are] cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up...." 60. In the very next trumpet, we see a fiery mass streaking down into the sea, with a devastating impact on life in an unspecified ocean. Thus, with the first two trumpet judgments, which are administered by angels, we have a tremendous toll on the "trees" as well as the "sea" - two of the three components that are not to be harmed until the sealing occurs.
In Revelation 6, at the opening of the sixth seal, "lo, there was a great earthquake" 61. - an event that is certain to "hurt" the earth. In a previous work, I have placed the trumpet judgments of Revelation 8 and 9 within the sixth seal (see The Wrath Of The Lamb, Christian Media Volume 8 #4), thus the opening event of that seal that is characterized as "a great earthquake," would then be followed by the trumpet judgments.
This chronology means the significant earthquake of Revelation 6:12 will be followed by the first trumpet burning of the trees, then the massive death in the sea generated by the second trumpet - the same 3 tribulational elements described in association with the sealing.
Sequential Identifiers And Scriptural Indicators
In still other previous prophetic efforts I have established that the fourth horseman is emblematic of the rise of Islam concurrent with the global dominion of the Antichrist system (see The Lion, The Bear, And The Leopard by the present author). This phase of end times activity is followed by the martyrs of Jesus (the fifth seal at Revelation 6:9) - something we're already seeing on a global level, so it is quite likely this sealing has already begun.
Once again, although space considerations preclude a lengthy reiteration of the basic facts concerning the fourth horseman, the text tells us "death" (the Antichrist that is also seen as the maker of a covenant in Isaiah 28:15) and "hell" (the False Prophet that is in "agreement" with him) are given "power...over the fourth part of the earth" as an instrument of death and destruction. Because it is a quantifiable fact that there are now 1.5 billion adherents to Islam among the planet's 6 billion inhabitants, it is self evident that the spirit behind Islam NOW controls "the fourth part of the earth." 62.
I've already written extensively on the Pale Horse scenario wherein the Greek word underlying "pale" is the word "chloros" - meaning green. This is the emblematic color of Islam (note the green crescent, green cross, etc) as well as the signet for the ecology movement that is destined to soar in importance as the tribulation erupts.
It's important to recognize that this does not indicate the Beast is a Moslem (he is, in fact, not a Moslem, and neither is the False Prophet), it simply demonstrates that the spirit that empowers them also controls the politically violent movement known as Islam - thus pinning the time period of the fourth horseman to the present.
Before leaving the angel that administers the sealing of God's tribulational elect, it is worth noting that the angelic host that distributes the seven trumpet judgments are segregated in two groups. The first four trumpet judgments appear to be clustered in a sequence that, upon their completion, then transitions to the last three trumpets as another aggregate of judgments. To this end, after the first four trumpets have devastated the earth, the sea, and the trees, the Revelator describes "an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitors of the earth by reason of the other voices of the three angels, which are yet to sound!" 63.
The last three of the trumpets are associated with the release of the Nephilim spirits bound in the bottomless pit, and the genetically engineered military assets described as biologically engineered animal life forms that were designed to house the newly released fallen angel's spirits. 64. These are decidedly different from the first four trumpet judgments which directly impact the earth, the sea, and the trees (among other things).
Thus, when the sealing angel "cried with a loud voice to the four angels," 65. not to hurt the earth, sea, or trees they are almost certainly the four angels that administer the first four trumpet judgments as those judgments coincide with the objects of destruction in both passages (Revelation 7 and 8).
Furthermore, because the fourth horseman of Revelation six provides a linkage to a violent Islamic presence as being associated with the chaotic conditions wherein significant numbers of people will die through the "sword" (among other things), we even have a subtle connection with the sealing passage of Revelation seven.
For many months, militant Islamic terror groups, including the elusive figure Osama Bin Ladin and the Al Quaida terrorist organization, have threatened to unleash something referred to as "the black wind." 66. This ominous sounding terminology is rooted in Islamic prophecy, and it speaks of a dreadful death on a massive scale.
In the first quarter of 2004, Al Quaida, communicating to the world through the London based Islamic publication known as Al Quds, stated that they were "90% ready" to unleash something they called the "black wind of death" on the United States. 67. Significantly, Quranic prophetic lore speaks of "four winds" and these appear to be somewhat similar to the four winds being held back by angels in Revelation. 68. The "black wind," known as Huarya Yana in the Arabic world, is associated with a judgment from their god and speaks of a "scorching wind and shadow of black smoke." 69.
It is not inconsequential that there is an Old Testament prophecy against Babylon, which is applicable to America in the present time, that also speaks of this horrifying judgment. In Jeremiah 51:1 we find the Lord saying "I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in the midst of them that rise up against me, a destroying wind...."
This is almost certainly connected to Revelation seven, where we find that just before the sealing, John sees the four angels "holding [back] the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree" 70. until the sealing of God's servants is initiated.
While we give no credence to the Islamic religion as it is a belief system that is clearly riddled with "doctrines of demons," 71. it is plain to see that Islam may very well be the instrument of the LORD's punishment of the nations. Thus, I am convinced the great tribulation has a significant Islamic component in the simple fact that there is an obvious connection between the present conflict between Islam and America and the description in Revelation. This is a conflict that is destined to be instrumental in generating the massive destruction from which the Antichrist will emerge.
There is yet a further element that helps to locate the chronology of these things. In another work, I have examined the role of the restrainer and concluded that he is not the Holy Spirit as is commonly taught by the now familiar vessels of dishonour that are the fountainhead of false doctrine in the church today - what I refer to as the cult that kidnapped Christianity. The Holy Spirit's role is to draw men to the truth and to teach them, not to engage in spiritual battle. 72.
Angels are seen in combat, and "withholding" 73. the activities of their spiritual opponents. In those battles we see the "powers of the heavens" (Matthew 24:29) are utilized - witness the four angels "holding the four winds" 74. that we've just mentioned. Furthermore, there are also four angels that are identified in Daniel that are seen holding back the intellects behind the principalities of each kingdom - there identified as "princes" (for a thorough look at this aspect of prophecy, see The Prince Of America by the present author).
The restrainer is the archangel Michael, and he is peculiarly associated with the alias known as Israel. In Daniel, he is scheduled to "stand up" and rejoin the battle. 75. This begs the question, at what point he was "taken out of the way" 76. in order to facilitate the emergence of the Antichrist. The second letter to the Thessalonians tells us this occurs when the church (read the spiritual temple of God) falls away into apostasy, something that has now been underway for many years. In short, the restrainer has been removed for some time.
This would, of course, be analogous with the writer with the inkhorn episode in Ezekiel. That dreadful reckoning was also triggered by a terrible falling away from the true worship of God in the temple.
Revelation confirms Michael's re-emergence in the conflict of the ages, as he and "his angels fought against the dragon" when the text tells us there is to be "war in heaven" 77. Again, chronological clues associated with this epic fight serve as markers to help us see when the reckoning, and the other prophetic events mentioned in this essay, will occur. These clues confirm the sequencing offered herein.
After Michael casts the dragon "out into the earth" 78. we hear "a loud voice saying....woe to the inhabiters of the earth...for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time." 79.
This "woe" may be synchronized with the conclusion of the first four angelic trumpet judgments when an angel, flying through the midst of heaven, declares with a loud voice "Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitors of the earth...." 80. This is also consistent with the two-phase understanding of the office of the Antichrist that I have prophesied of for many years.
The Antichrist is a political leader that has held power, lost his seat of authority, and is scheduled to be returned to power in the midst of the terrifying events described in this work. Thus, this man can hold power at the fourth seal and be identified as the rider of the pale horse "death," be subsequently ousted from office during the fifth seal, and experience a political resurrection at the sixth seal. This prophetic revelation fulfills the passages about the eighth "head" being "of the seven." 81. It also fulfills the passage describing "the beast that was, and is not" in that he holds power, loses it, then regains it.
Furthermore, this sequence recapitulates the Judas Cycle in that the only two people in scripture ever referred to as the "son of perdition" are Judas Iscariot and the Antichrist 82. The reader will recall that Judas was originally a follower of Jesus, but his faith deteriorated through the love of money as evidenced by the fact that "Judas had the bag [read the disciple's funds]." 83.
John records that "the devil...put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him" 84. Luke tells us "Then entered Satan into Judas...." 85. so we see that although Judas starts out as a disciple of Jesus, he ultimately turns against the Lord. This predictive pattern indicates the Antichrist will be a "Christian" that betrays the body of Christ in a global fulfillment of the foreshadowing seen in Judas Iscariot.
A crucial aspect of this 'second stage' of the Antichrist saga is also placed after the first four trumpet judgments. At the fifth trumpet, the Nephilim spirits are released and Revelation informs us "they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit..." 86. Although it appears this angel was bound therein, the scripture doesn't actually specify that. A close read of Revelation 9 shows this "king" over the fallen ones is actually the evil angel Lucifer - just cast out of heaven by Michael, given the "key" to the pit, and now exiled to earth for the short time he has left.
It is after the four trumpet judgments that this occurs and at that time, Satan will indwell the Antichrist - the "Christian" leader whose political career has already been resurrected as the nations turn to him to lead the UN through the nightmare the world has become. This is similar to what I call the Judas cycle in that Judas is not possessed by the devil until the inauguration of the "tribulation" of Jesus Christ - i.e. his trial, beating, and crucifixion. Thus, the modern "son of perdition" will also become possessed late in the drama.
The prophet Daniel provides still another witness to this timeline as he informs us the Antichrist will "honour the god of forces" - 87. a rather astute appellation for the returning gods of antiquity we know as the Nephilim. In other words, the fallen angels that have been bound in the bottomless pit arrive back on the earth just as Satan possesses the leader of the world. Once again, this occurs immediately following the fourth trumpet when the "woes" are announced.
The Reckoning Is At Hand
I believe that God is sealing His servants now. As previously stated, the reckoning is a "judgment [that] must begin at the house of God." 88. This is precisely what Ezekiel wrote concerning "the writer with the inkhorn" whose mark preserved the remnant, whereas the reckoning that ensued was to "begin at my sanctuary." 89.
Revelation tells us that God requires that true believers separate themselves from the "the great whore" of Babylon 90. - the organized "Christian" church. We are told to "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." 91. This is not negotiable. Those that cannot discern the painful truth that organized churches have "become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird" 92. are destined to be destroyed in the reckoning.
The LORD is no longer in the church as we see in Revelation when Jesus is seen outside the seven churches. He states "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock...." 93. The true remnant of Jesus Christ, spiritual Israel, has come out of every beast licensed church, and is already in the spiritual wilderness this generation embodies.
America is appointed to utter devastation, and the so-called "Christian" churches are first in line for the horrifying judgment that is now imminent. Millions and millions of so-called Christians are universally absorbed in "marrying and giving in marriage." These statements are readily apparent to the true remnant as they see how the deceived "believers," convinced they are saved, are "eating and drinking" even as they buy and sell, and plant and build.
They take vacations, plan their career moves, and think about insurance, children, and recreation. They obey the beast in virtually everything, misquoting scripture to justify their disobedience to the laws of God. They purchase new cars, invest in the stock market, and revile those odd people that call themselves the remnant that are willing to tell them the terrible truth, even as they scoff while dwelling "carelessly in the isles" 94. - and they know not that the reckoning is about to come and take them all away to the place where the eagles are gathered, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
"The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb..." 95.
"But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall met with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." 96.
-- James Lloyd
©2004 CHRISTIAN MEDIA RESEARCH, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
1. II Timothy 2:15
2. Colossians 3:6
3. Acts 1:11
4. Matthew 24:3
5. Matthew 25:32
6. Matthew 13:25
7. Matthew 25:1
8. Luke 17:22
9. Matthew 24:37
10. Luke 17:26
11. Matthew 24:38-41
12. II Corinthians 4:4
13. I Thessalonians 3:2
14. Matthew 24:14.
15. Luke 17:26
16. Luke 17:27, Matt 24:39
17. Luke 17:27
18. Luke 17:34
19. Luke 17:35
20. Luke 17:36
21. Luke 17:37
22. Psalms 12:6
23. Matthew 24:29
24. Matthew 24:31
25. I Thessalonians 4:16,17
26. I Corinthians 15:52
27. I Thessalonians 4:15
28. I Corinthians 15:51
29. Revelation 10:7
30. Matthew 24:31
31. Matthew 24:29
32. Revelation 6:12,13
33. Matthew 24:29
34. Revelation 6:15,16
35. John 3:36.
36. Matthew 24:29
37. Matthew 24:40
38. Matthew 24:38
39. Revelation 6:15
40. Matthew 24:41
41. Luke 17:28
42. Revelation 2:2
43. I Chronicles 7:5
44. I Chronicles 9:1
45. word #187
46. Numbers 26:53
47. Isaiah 53:3-6,12
48. Mark 15:24,28
49. Luke 22:37
50. Daniel 5:25-28
51. Although scripture is silent on Belshazzar's fate, the
historian Xenophon tells us all at the fateful party were executed.
52. Matthew 8:12
53. Ezekiel 9:1,2,4-6
54. Exodus 12:22,23
55. I Timothy 4:16
56. Revelation 7:2-4
57. Zephaniah 3:13
58. Romans 9:6
59. Galatians 6:16
60. Revelation 8:7
61. Revelation 6:12
62. Revelation 6:8
63. Revelation 8:13
64. See Genesis 6:4, II Peter 2:4, Revelation 9:11
65. Revelation 7:2
Black Wind Coming? - Consider This A 'Red Alert,' Spanish leader
blasts U.S. policy March 16, 2004, Geir Moulson, http://www.suntimes.com/output/news/cst-nws-spain16.html
Ramadan and "black wind" - http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/viewthread.php?tid=19281
[56.41] And those of the left hand, how wretched are those of
the left hand! 56.42 In hot wind and boiling water, 56.43 And the
shade of black smoke, 56.44 Neither cool nor honorable. 56.45 Surely
they were before that made to live in ease and plenty. 56.46 And they
persisted in the great violation.
Lampholder Publications, reported in the Feb 21, 2004, Lampholder
The Black Wind Coming??
70. Revelation 7:1
71. I Timothy 4:1
72. See also the "comforter" passages of John 14:16, 26;
73. II Thessalonians 2:6, Daniel 10:21
74. Revelation 7:1
75. Daniel 12:1
76. II Thessalonians 2:7
77. Revelation 12:7
78. Revelation 12:9
79. Revelation 12:12
80. Revelation 8:13
81. Revelation 17:11
82. See John 17:12, II Thessalonians 2:3
83. John 13:29, 12:6
84. John 13:2
85. Luke 22:3
86. Revelation 9:11
87. Daniel 11:38
88. I Peter 4:17
89. Ezekiel 9:6
90. Revelation 17:1
91. Revelation 18:4
92. Revelation 18:2
93. Revelation 3:20
94. Ezekiel 39:6
95. Revelation 14:10
96. I Thessalonians 5:2, II Peter 3:10
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2000-2010 CHRISTIAN MEDIA RESEARCH