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The Christian Counter

 



The Rise of Babylon

 

In the segment about the Seven Trumpets, we examined the global crisis that will cause Babylon to form. An overwhelming fear of God’s wrath during the first four trumpets will bring world leaders together in ways that are unimaginable now. Earlier in this segment, we also examined the rise of Babylon and the identity of the seven heads and we learned that they represent the seven religious systems of the world. Before we further investigate the sudden rise of the leopard-like beast, a recent event occurred that illiterates how quickly Babylon could rise from a multitude of nations.

 

As I am writing this segment, the world is experiencing a sudden financial crisis. Consider this abbreviated report written by CNN correspondent, Kathleen Koch, on October 18, 2008:

 

WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Bush announced Saturday that he will host the first of what could be several summits of world leaders to discuss the global response to the financial crisis. President Bush and French President Nicolas Sarkozy discussed the summit Saturday in Maryland. “It is essential that we work together because we’re in the crisis together.” Bush said at Camp David, Maryland, with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and European Union President Jose Manuel Barroso. “Together we will work to modernize our financial systems,” Bush said. “We must resist the temptation of financial isolationism…” (Italics mine)

 

If world leaders can quickly come together to repair a broken economy, what will they do when God’s wrath breaks out against the whole world? What will world leaders do when our infrastructures are destroyed and 1.75 billion people die because of God’s wrath? Desperate circumstances require extreme solutions and this explains how the rise of Babylon will be “astonishing.” The whole world will think, at first, that Babylon’s rise and efforts to appease God are appropriate, but global approval will soon fade. With these thoughts in mind, please consider Revelation 13:2-8:

 

“The beast I saw resembled a leopard, but had feet like those of a bear and a mouth like that of a lion. The dragon [Lucifer] gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority [over the world]. One of the heads of the beast [Catholicism] seemed to have had a fatal wound [February 1798], but the fatal wound had been healed. The whole world was astonished [and overwhelmed at God’s wrath] and [they innocently] followed [the demands of] the beast.” (Revelation 13:2,3, insertions mine) I believe the healing of the fatal wound means the Catholic Church will be elected as the leader of Babylon to facilitate the attempted recovery.

 

“Men worshiped the dragon [that is, they unknowingly obeyed Lucifer] because he had given authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast [they obeyed the laws of Babylon] and asked, ‘Who is like the beast? Who can make war against Him?” [Who can resist this global endeavor for appeasing God’s wrath?] The [leopard-like] beast was given a mouth [by the devil] to utter proud words and blasphemies [defying and insulting God’s demands] and to exercise his authority for forty-two months.” Revelation 13:4,5, insertions mine) The leopard-like beast has no authority over the world other than these forty-two months.

 

“He [the leopard-like beast] opened his mouth to blaspheme God, and to slander his [holy] name and his dwelling place and those who live in heaven.” (Revelation 13:6, insertions mine) This phrase means Babylon will declare the Ten Commandments null and void. Babylon will arrogantly claim that it has the highest authority in all religious matters and opposition will not be tolerated.

 

‘He [the leopard-like beast, a hand puppet of the devil] was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation.” (Revelation 13:7, italics and insertions mine) This includes the “great” nations of China, India, Russia, and the United States of America.

 

“All inhabitants of the earth will worship [obey] the [leopard-like] beast – all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world.” (Revelation 13:8, insertions mine)

 

Millions of Sleeping Christians Are About to be Ambushed

 

Look at Revelation 12:17:   “Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring…” This war is described seven verses later: “He was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation.” (Revelation 13:7) Lucifer will persecute the saints for forty-two months. The chronological flow from Revelation 12:17 to Revelation 13: 1-8 is very clear, but millions of Christians totally ignore this linkage. Religion is so blinding. Christians who believe in a pre-tribulation rapture think they will be in Heaven, even though the Bible clearly says the dragon will make war against the “remnant of the woman.” On the other hand, people who believe the leopard-like beast and the forty-two months of persecution took place during the Dark Ages are just as misguided. Regardless of which position you take, the devil is armed and ready to make war on God’s people, and hundreds of millions of Christians are asleep. They do not have a clue that they are about to be ambushed.

 

To put this ambush in perspective, let us review four items that were examined in the segment on the Seven Trumpets:

 

1.        The first four trumpets judgments described in Revelation 8:2-13 will produce death and destruction on a scale that exceeds human measurement and calculation. These judgments will occur during the first thirty to sixty days of the Great Tribulation. Because these judgments will be global, most survivors will seriously question whether survival on planet Earth will continue. These judgments will destroy thousands of cities. Earth’s infrastructures will be in ruins and twenty-five percent of Earth’s seven people (1.75 people) will die.

 

2.        During the first four trumpets, the inhabitants of Earth will be traumatized by two painful observations: First, they will tremble at the reality of Almighty God and the power and scope of His wrath. Second, they will observe that God’s wrath fell on cities and places that were known for their wickedness. Since very few people understand the book of Revelation now, most survivors will logically think that more judgments from God are imminently forthcoming. This anticipation will induce urgency, and this urgency will move the leaders of the world to rapidly and radically transform the world’s governance. Desperate situations require extreme solutions. During the fourth trumpet, darkness will cover the middle third of our planet and during this darkness, world leaders will quickly agree on the formation of a crisis government whose mission will be to reduce sinful behavior and appease God’s wrath. The crisis government is Babylon, the leopard-like beast of Revelation 13.

 

3.        The need for a crisis government will be compelling. Everyone will be afraid of God and no one will argue against appeasing God’s anger. Almost everyone will assume that more destruction is forthcoming unless something is done quickly! The religious and political justification to form Babylon will be simple: “Mankind must immediately appease God through repentance and worship or all mankind will perish.” This justification and the mayhem of the moment will require martial law. Constitutions will be set aside and religious freedom will become a memory.

 

4.        Jesus will turn the world upside down with the first four trumpet judgments. He will put the religious leaders of the world in positions of power. God’s greatest frustration is not with political leaders, but with religious leaders who claim to know Him. Religious leaders will be given higher positions of higher authority than political leaders because religious leaders will claim (and billions of people will believe) that they know the will and ways of the Almighty God! (Of course, their actions will prove otherwise, but their ignorance will take a few months to unfold.) This “fruit basket upset” will enable religious leaders to get what they want. They will insist on the creation of many “sin-less” laws and bewildered politicians will have no choice but to enact and enforce them. As political leaders survey the extent of death and global destruction caused by the first four trumpets, they, too, will realize that God targeted places that were well known for wickedness. This fact will motivate them to do whatever the religious leaders think best. Sinful behaviors of all kinds will be declared “illegal.” Morality will be legislated and offenders will be severely punished – all this to avert more of God’s wrath. 

 

Babylon Gets Organized

 

In a vacuum of darkness, fear, foreboding, and global uncertainty, I anticipate the Roman Catholic Church will step forward with leadership. The pope will invite religious leaders and political leaders from all over the world to a worldwide summit. At a minimum, three amazing decisions will come from this summit that would otherwise be unthinkable. Here is a sample:

 

1.            The council will agree that (a) God is angry because the world’s behavior is degenerate and decadent, and (b) all nations must unite as one family, improve their behavior, and appease Almighty God. Amazingly, everyone will see the problem and agree on the solution.  In concrete terms, the solution will consist of legislative producing repentance, reformation, and worship.

 

2.            Everyone at the council will realize that God’s anger was directed at notably wicked places. Therefore, the political leaders of the world will agree to submit to the directives of Babylon because God’s wrath could break out against any nation or even the whole world again.

 

3.            The leaders of the world will create an executive committee of religious leaders from the seven religions of the world. (This committee will be something like the Security Council in the United Nations, except it will be religious in nature and far more dictatorial.)  The pope will be selected as the leader of this council for several reasons. First, his selection will be the moment the deadly wound is completely healed. Second, the Roman Catholic Church is uniquely prepared to lead Babylon because it is both a spiritual and a political organization having diplomatic relations with more than 170 nations on Earth. Keep in mind the pope will not be elected for the purpose of promoting or imposing Catholic doctrine on the nations of the Earth. The diversity of the world’s religions will not permit this. Rather, the mandate the pope and his council will have is to oversee and direct a global effort to appease God.

 

Actually, for all the good the leopard-like beast intends to do, it will quickly become a hand puppet of the devil. “The dragon [the devil] gave the [leopard-like] beast his power and his throne and great authority.” (Revelation 13:2, insertion mine) Babylon will be a “human glove” which mankind will create to appease God, but the devil will use it to persecute the woman. Consider this illustration: If you put your hand into a glove and then you hit someone with your gloved hand, who or what is responsible for the pain you caused, the glove or your hand? When the world exalts the rule of religion over politics and creates Babylon, the devil will quickly enter through the back door to take control of the world.

 

The devil is waiting for Babylon to be formed because he has been preparing to make war on the saints for a long time. (Revelation 12:17) Soon, his chance to destroy them will come. Jesus closes this portion of the story by saying, “he who has an ear, let him hear [what the Spirit says]. If anyone is to go into captivity [for his faith in Me], into captivity he will go [don’t worry because I will give you strength to endure]. If anyone is to be killed with the sword [because of his faith in Me], with the sword he will be killed [but, don’t worry because I will set you free from your fear]. This calls for patient endurance and faithfulness on the part of the saints. (Revelation 13:9,10)  




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