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ARE WE THERE YET?

A look at how things that happening around us are possible fulfilment of the Book Of Revelation



I am going to preface this message with the note that I am not saying that what associations I am making here are truly the fulfilment of a large number of prophecies that are found in the Book Of Revelation, what I am saying is that they are certainly capable of fulfilling them.

The Book Of Revelation is a rather fascinating book that has interested scholars and Christians since it was first written almost 2000 years ago by the Apostle John from a revelation he received while he was in prison on the Island of Patmos. Most scholars agree that John wrote in 'picture' language so that he would be allowed to share the document without fear of punishment and it is often that 'picture' language that has fascinated scholars over the years, because there is nothing to say what is 'picture' language and what is plain language. I certainly won't be entering into any aspect of that argument in this message and I will leave it to the individual reader to decide how what I say, fits into their personal perception of what the relevant passages say.

In Matthew  Chapter 24, Jesus, Himself, warns of things to come and how they will affect us. These are the things that must come first, before the end time.

Firstly, we are warned that major times of trouble will happen to the faithful. There will be the great deception that is to occur. The deception and lies of Islam are leading many astray as the message of Islam is spread further and further afield.

There is also to be wars before the end time comes. The last 100 or so years has certainly seen some terrifying wars and battles that have encompassed the whole world. There will also be famines, earthquakes everywhere - these we have certainly experienced in recent times.
 
Secondly, and more specifically affecting the faithful, will be the arrest and punishment (including death) of those who are loyal followers of Jesus. This persecution will cause many to turn away from their faith. We don't have to look very far to see these things taking place, especially (though not exclusively) in Islamic countries. The believers are encouraged to hold on to their faith regardless of the price.

False prophets will abound and anyone aged 50 and over will probably know of the high profile people who fit this category. The Good News will be preached to the whole world and, while this is not 100% done as yet, this is close to completion.

Then there is the "awful abomination" that will be seen in the holy place. Some take this to mean the mosque that now stands on the Temple Hill in Jerusalem (and that may be so) but it can also mean the false teachings that are taking place in so called Christian churches, where the teachings of the world have diluted the Gospel message in sometimes diverse ways - this is the church trying to conform to the world to be more acceptable.


Jesus warns His followers that His coming will be seen everywhere and not just in one place, so believers need to be aware not to be misled by false messages of His return. While the signs leading to the return of Jesus will be clearly visible, no-one knows the exact time Jesus will return, that is known to no-one but God, so those who prophesy the actual event are to be deemed as false prophets.

One thing I have become aware of in my extensive studies of this book (and other prophecies) is that the written order may or may not correspond to the chronological order of the events taking place. That must be kept in mind as we look at this message.

Rev 2:1-3:22 - In the letters to the 7 churches, John has described seven basic church types that are found. Basically, the modern Christian churches still fit within these definitions. There is a call here to the readers of this message about how these fit. They need to honestly examine themselves (as an individual),  the church congregation they belong to, and the overall church grouping they belong to - honestly looking at which of the seven churches (and it can be more than one) that each is aligned to. Having determined that aspect, working out what needs to be changed (if anything) and how it might be done. Great care is advised in these "self checks" for it is very easy to be over judgmental, if you are not careful. There is some influence on what takes place in this interpretation that will affect how the events of the current time fit into the picture.

In the next section (4:1 to 5:14) there are some further aspects of the vision that will most probably have little or no bearing on what is to follow, with reference to this actual message, but the verses are listed for those who wish to follow the process in detail.

Then comes the first of the actual prophecies (6:1-17). This is the passage that deals with the opening of the first 6 seals that were mentioned in Chapter 5.

Seal 1: The white horse - the horse of the conqueror. We certainly can see plenty of examples of where this may be fulfilled in modern times. In respect to Islam, this has so many fulfilments, especially in Africa, where we see the large number of countries that have been brought under Islamic control in recent historic times and this includes much of the north of Africa. But, looking further back in history, we see a continuous stream of conquests, from early European exploits onward. The Americas, Australia and many other countries have been conquered in one way or another.

Seal 2: The red horse - the horse of the war maker. Once again, there are plenty of examples of Islam being responsible for war (Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, etc., are but a few in most recent times). However, we must note that it is not only Islam that is endeavouring to make war as we see many others (North Korea and some of the South American countries certainly come to mind) that fit into this mold of making war a priority. And one can hardly rule out the willingness of the USA to go to war (in so called defence of 'invaded' nations) along with its NATO allies and UN allies.

Seal 3: The black horse - the rider with the scales - political and economic turmoil. Here,  2009 would be one of the best examples and the current crisis in the USA (October 2013) would also stand, with this one having the Islamic links. Dominance of the control of oil by the Islamic nations is also a major factor in the economic instability of the world. The colour of this horse may have a veiled reference to the oil factor.

Seal 4: The pale horse - whose rider is death and accompanied by Hades. Certainly death and violence (not just on a war level) are a major issue these days. The wholesale slaughter by terrorism and jihad abound, with  both mass executions and individual deaths coming in to play. Since September 2001, the statistics of Islamic connected killings is unbelievable (a list of atrocities can be found on a dedicated website that is to be found at http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/attacks-2013.htm and this is just for 2013. Since 9 September 2001, Islamic terrorists have carried out in excess of 21,800 [as at 25th October 2013] deadly terror attacks). However, we cannot overlook the alarming rise in killings all around the world by individuals and gangs.

An interesting aspect is a news video broadcast during the first Egyptian uprising (2009) that showed an unexplainable object that appeared to be a pale horse (Video Ref :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEXMoCwHVTE - about 5:15 into the video). Many have tried to explain the pale horse in this video, but none have really done so. Whilst this may not have any meaning, when we are considering prophetic fulfilment, anything that might be relevant should be mentioned.

Seal 5: The fifth seal reveals God's martyrs who are crying out for justice and revenge. Certainly the large number of Christians that have been killed by Islamic terrorists is high, as they regularly target and destroy Christian churches throughout the world and make no secret of the fact. In recent times we have seen many such attacks, especially in Pakistan. This is common in Islamic countries as they seek to remove all Christian influence in such countries. A single attack on a church in Pakistan recently (September 2013) saw 150 Christians killed with the church destroyed. I have recently read a story that suggested that the number of Christians killed under Islam in the last 1400 years is in excess of two million. With numbers like that, there are certainly sufficient martyrs to be crying out for justice.

Seal 6: With this seal, we see nature rebel against the earth and the implication here especially appears to refer to massive earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and the possible inclusion of other natural and man made disasters (such as nuclear accidents, shipwrecks, including mass drowning of so called refugee boats) that would all fit into this. There has been, over recent years, been some very devastating earthquakes (December 27, 2004; Haiti; Fukushima, Japan are just some) that have affected more than just the location. These, of course, are  nowhere near them all. We have also seen some massive volcanic eruptions, huge storms and much more that certainly fit this prophecy.

The second part of this seal is about man's fearful reaction to these horrors. However, the reactions of mankind, while being horrified, suggests that, while these maybe close, they really haven't taken place yet, suggesting that maybe much worse is yet to come with respect to the disasters. If greater disasters are still to come, then we have cause to be fearful.

In Chapter 7: 1-17, we see the vision of people who have been singled out for being saved in the first wave. The first group is labelled as descendants of Israel. There is some conjecture as to whether this is literally those of Israel, or those who may be descended from the dispersion of Israel (and who may not even know that they are descendants). I don't think that we need to argue on the technicality of this group here.

The second group is likely to include those who are not included in the previous list and would certainly cover Christians. The implication here might be that some may be taken away so as to not have to suffer the full force of what is still to come. Alternatively, it may be Christians who have already died. It certainly promises good things to those included in this group.

However these two groups are to be made up, we do not know whether this has happened or is still to happen and may not have bearing on what we are discussing in this message.

The breaking of the seventh seal (8:1-5) is heralded in with complete silence. Keeping in mind that silence often means peace in Biblical prophecy and the day often refers to our time span of one year, this might be seen as the "calm before the storm" and that there would be an artificial peace (possibly including with nature) across the entire planet for 6 months.

If that were the case, the arrival of such a period should raise much terror amongst those who are still alive. The silence is ended with violent happenings, especially storms and earthquakes, the likes of which have not been seen before.

Now, having said all this, there is a possibility that all seven seals have already been opened and come to pass. Meaning that we are further into the end times than was first thought.

This next section (8:6 - 9:21) could be referred to as the catastrophic section.

Trumpet 1: This is a series of events (or a massive single event). The prophecy talks about hail and fire and, over the years, this has sometimes been interpreted as massive volcanic eruptions, or, as in recent times, nuclear explosions. Certainly these are both possible and a combination of the two could not be ruled out. What we do know is that the result is that one third of all vegetation would be gone. This would be catastrophic on such a densely populated planet. Starvation would be the inevitable product of this event.

Trumpet 2: This is most likely an asteroid or very large meteor hitting the ocean. This would appears as a "flaming mountain" falling into the sea. The destruction suggest one that is extremely large as it destroys a third of everything on and in the oceans and leaves it blood red. This could also cause massive tsunamis of a magnitude only seen in movies up until now. The red could be caused by the object having large amounts of iron oxide or from the blood of all the creatures that would be destroyed (or both). Catastrophic result. Most recently we have seen such an action taking place over Russia that caused quite a few problems, though they hardly fell in the catastrophic category, but they indicate that such an event is nowhere near an impossibility. Certainly that event lit up the sky in dazzling light.

Trumpet 3: This is similar to that of trumpet 2 but the affect is different. Here we find the poisoning of one third of the world's fresh water. A different chemical structure and an asteroid/meteorite that explodes in the atmosphere would certainly cause chemicals/dust to be scattered across the planet and affect the water. Another catastrophic outcome.

Trumpet 4: Similar reaction to that of trumpet 1 with the creation of what was (and maybe still is) known as the nuclear winter. The dust from a massive volcano (cast you mind back to Mt. St Helens years back or to Iceland a few years back) or a destructive nuclear explosion (such as Chernobyl), could create a large dust cloud that was capable of covering a third of our atmosphere. Upper air current would move this cloud around so it would be unlikely to be only covering a single part of the planet, giving the appearance of shutting off a third of the stars. If the cloud was not overly dense, the sun would still appear though it but with much less warmth and light. Catastrophic to food production at the least.

Now when we consider events like Mt St Helens, the volcano in Iceland and some of the others, trumpets 1 and 4 might be deemed to have already happened. Then there is Ison that is due in our neighbourhood next year (2014) with remote possibilities of either hitting us or fragments hitting us, this could cover trumpets 2 and 3. So these events are within the realms of possibility for now (and may have already happened).

Trumpet 5: Prefaced with a warning that the remaining trumpets to be blown will bring greater tragedy than the first 4, does not offer much joy.

The falling star heralds the release of a plague of indescribable horror. This horror does not bring death to people, only a suffering that makes them wish they could die (though, somehow, it is prevented). We have seen such a horror on a small scale with Agent Orange in the Vietnam war and, knowing that most developed countries have chemical weapons, the accidental release of a stockpile of these could certainly produce this effect or they could be delivered by a nation (or group) that was out of control. The description of the locusts who deliver the plague is not far off the description of a large helicopter and, for someone living almost 2000 years ago, a very good way of describing something that was way beyond his imagination.

Trumpet 6: There is much that can be read into this disaster but some interesting facts arise. We see an army of 200 million people who come across the Euphrates River and destroy one third of the human population. For a long time, because this army comes out of the east, most people have predicted that only one country could mount such an army: China. However, we may have been looking in the wrong descriptive interpretation. Currently there are in excess of 700 million Muslims in the world who would, theoretically, cross the Euphrates River as they marched on the world with an army of 200 million. The Koran openly states (as do the Imams) that they have a decree and an unchangeable task to destroy all infidels (that is anyone who will not bow to Islam). That invasion is well and truly happening and their record of jihads and terrorism, along with their stated aims, make it quite clear that it would be within their power to destroy one third of the human race. This task is well and truly upon us.

This section concludes with a statement that still people will not accept God's ways and will not step back from their various forms of idolatry, which includes the worship of possessions and trade. Isn't that what we see today - a world full of apathy towards what is happening all around them.

The next passage (10:1-11) is about a little scroll and an unrevealed message. The little scroll is offered to  John and he is told to eat, with the warning that it will taste like honey in his mouth but it will make him feel really sick. A possible interpretation here is that mankind is offered something that, on the surface, looks like a real blessing but once it has been foolishly accepted, it backfires and causes no end of problems. Islam marches in under a lying banner of being a religion of peace and people like this idea, but once an area or a country has been subjugated and Sharia law introduced, people have discovered that peace is no longer existing and it truly becomes a most hated thing, but it is too late. It is one possible outcome of this prophetic story.

As for the message of the thunder which John was not allowed to share, we can only guess at what that may have been. Was it a warning of mankind's failure to be able to truly see what is happening? As the process must occur, the warning was not allowed to be known.

In Rev 11:1-14, two witnesses appear on the scene and stand against the events that are happening all around. They bring a message of condemnation to the world. Both to those who are fighting against God and those who refuse to believe what is actually happening. They are protected for the duration of their work (42 months) and they have extraordinary powers whereby they can bring about destruction and death to the non-believer and they have control over the rain and the water supplies.
 
Finally, after their allotted time has expired, they are killed when the beast that comes from the abyss (the unknown) defeats them. Their bodies are displayed in the great city where all can see them. The world celebrates in great pomp and fashion but the celebrations are short lived for the two are raised from the dead after a short period of time (three and a half days in the book that John wrote)  and taken straight to heaven. As they depart, there is a huge earthquake that destroys 10% of the city and seven thousand people die as a result. Terror spreads amongst the survivors at the display of this power, and they actually praise God.

Certainly, there are people rising up and speaking out against this evil of Islam, and anyone of these people could, I imagine, become one of these two special witnesses. However, no special powers have yet been seen and so we must wait on this part of the prophecy. They may also be two people who have not yet been heard.

The seventh trumpet sounds (11:15-19) and with it comes the revelation of God's Heaven and all the glory therein. Here is the final unleashing of terror, which includes a massive electrical storm, an earthquake and heavy hail. Judgement is about to be unleashed. I would see this as a promise of things still to come.

12: 1-17 - A massive sight appears in the sky which unfolds a story that encompasses history: from the birth of a child (who is taken straight to heaven), followed by an attack by the devil and his followers, who chase the woman (representing the good of mankind) as she flees to hiding place prepared for her.

I think there is a need to be aware that some of mankind may be able to go to a safe haven, where they will be able to be protected from what is to follow.

With this action, war breaks out in the heavens between the Army of God and the armies of the devil, and the devil is banished to earth. Many believe that this battle has already taken place (in fact, this whole section has passed) and that the devil is among us. Certainly when we look at Islam, that event took place in the early 600's when Mohammed wrote the Koran. The evil has grown since that point in time. "The dragon was furious and went off to fight the descendants of the woman." Revelation 12:17. Now I am not saying that evil was not around prior to that time, because we know that it was. I am saying that it would now have an applied and increased vigour.

The one that killed the two messengers is now joined by a beast, who rises from the sea (the sea is sometimes used to indicate the populace as a whole - someone coming from the masses of the people) and is given great power (13:1-18).

With this power he sets out to establish the kingdom of evil amongst all of mankind and he was allowed this power for 42 months. The people of the world worshipped this beast as a hero. This is a period of great killing of God's people and the faithful are called upon too endure this horror.

Now with the rise of Barak Obama with the start of his second term in office (notice that he didn't show his true colours until after the election for the second term) we see that one who could fit the picture of the beast has now risen to the forefront of history in the making. If that were to be so, then we are given just three and a half years from February 2013 when his second term began. This would have to mean that the two witnesses  actually must be already here for they have the same time span as the beast and it is the beast that kills the two witnesses. I don't have too much trouble with this aspect because, as I said at the start, written sequence and actual sequence can certainly overlap, nor necessarily in the exact same order. The big issue here is that things are going to really start to happen in the very near future. Certainly the stage is set for this but just how will it unfold is yet to be fully revealed.
 
This beast is joined by a second beast who also has power and it is his task to force the people of the world to worship the first beast. Part of this process is the creation of a "living statue" that helps to enforce this worship because, while it is not living, it can see and speak and act. Another part of this enforcement is the "Mark Of The Beast", whereby unless a person bears that mark (referred to in the Bible as '666') they cannot participate in the general trade of the world. Many contenders for the title of the mark have been raised over the years but the one with the most credence is to be seen in the badge that is worn on the heads (and arms) of Islamic fighters and terrorists. For a detailed explanation of this aspect, watch the following YouTube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9I7Q9bbunRg). The video runs for about 15 minutes but it is very clear in the explanation. With this mark comes Sharia Law, the aspect that Islam wishes to subjugate the whole world under. Muslims make it very clear that this aspect is what they aim for across the entire world.

Two things come to play here. The first is that the one I assigned to the beast a couple of paragraphs early, may, in fact, be the second beast. Certainly, things are being put in place for the 'mark' to be used on people and this mark is the one of the 'identifying capsule' (microchip) that is injected under the skin. This is similar to the ID that has been placed into dogs and cats for identification. There is information coming out of the USA at the moment that says that to participate in the Obama Healthcare System, you will carry such a microchip to identify you as being a part of the system. It is only one step to move from identifying you for healthcare to
identifying for any trading. Thus a potential 'mark of the beast' system is already in place.

Now I hasten to add here, that much of the time span is assuming a literal 42 months of time. As most Bible scholars will tell you, time in prophesy can be stated to mean extended periods of time, so the idea of 42 literal months may not be exact in the interpretation. It may be shorter or it may be longer.

While some aspects of judgement are mentioned in these next two chapters (14 & 15), much of it deals with events that will follow and then into the prelude to the last plagues of God's judgement. It won't hurt the reader to set aside time to read these two chapters as there are many words of encouragement to be found in that passage. As we read the events unfolding, Christians are going to need all the encouragement they can get. The Bible certainly tells us that our strength must come from God but there is much emphasis placed on unity. Petty differences will have to be put aside - United we stand: divided we fall.

The next passage (16:1-21) covers the final punishment of the people of earth. How do these fit with things we know? We will look at each.

1. The first plague is terrible and painful sores. Not hard to envisage and could be related to the escape of some of the germ warfare weapons that have been developed over the years (and denied by many). We know that some terrible diseases have been developed and have already accidentally leaked into the environment with some devastating effect. It isn't hard to imagine the total release of these and the damage they would cause to people. This description also clearly fits what we know of the effects of radiation poisoning.

2. The second plague is basically the poisoning of the sea. Again, we know how possible that can be, especially when we think of the Exon tanker that sank off the west coast of Canada and, in more recent times, the disastrous oil leakage in the Gulf Of Mexico. Not hard to imagine this on a much wider scale, considering what is carried on the high seas and extracted from the sea.

3. The third plague is the poisoning of the freshwater waterways across the planet with catastrophic effects. This could well be related to the second plague.

4. The fourth plague is the scorching of the planet by the sun and there are three main possibilities here. The first is that we are already aware of the destruction of the protective ozone layer that protects this planet - that process is well under way. The second is a massive sun flare which is not beyond the realms of possibility. The third could be a combination of the two.

5. The fifth plague is total darkness over the kingdom of the beast. Again, there are a number of possibilities but I will mention just two. The first would be a "nuclear winter" that totally enveloped the planet, being caused by an out of control nuclear war. The instability of the USA at present, along with its huge nuclear arsenal, is certainly a strong contender for this cause. The second would be mass volcanic eruptions that would also put so much dust into the air that it would have the same affect.

6. The sixth plague is the drying up of the Euphrates River that would allow the passage of the armies of the beast to move westward. Now there are some who say that this has already happened and that 'barrier' has been removed and Islam is already advancing westward. It talks about 3 terrible leaders (hideous frogs) that will lead that army. There are many contenders to this role including Hitler, Obama, the United Nations and others that exist.

7. The seventh plague is one of natural destruction caused by huge storms, earthquakes of unprecedented magnitude, the destruction of mountains (swallowed by the earthquakes) and monstrous hailstones (the Bible says weighing 1 hundredweight or 50 kilogrammes). Each of those, in themselves would be bad enough but all together they would be very destructive. Part of the destruction is the great city that is called, in the Bible, Babylon. Now Babylon could easily be representative of the centre of Islam and the destruction of that area would have a major effect (to say the least) upon the Islamic way of life. For many years, Babylon has also been linked to Rome and the Vatican and this is yet another possibility.

17:1-19:4 - The Destruction Of Babylon: This follows straight on from the seventh plague. The destruction of, what would be, the centre of Islam, would be devastating to the world, the reference here being to Babylon, the city that has become trade, political and religious centre of the world.
 

Because with Islam, by this time in our assumptions, having gained control, its centre of power and wealth would suddenly be gone and world leaders, the traders and the transport systems would no longer have anything to do and their wealth would be destroyed. This could also indicate the destruction of the world financial system. Much can be associated with this destruction prophecy but none of it is good for the powers of evil.

What follows is a brief section where the good people of the world are invited to a coming feast that will take place at the close of the age, termed in the Bible as the Wedding Feast Of The Lamb.

The armies of God come out of heaven and march upon the armies of evil. The battle is swift and decisive. The armies of evil are destroyed and the devil, himself, is imprisoned for a period of time that the Bible describes as 1000 years. The result is that there will be no deception of the remainder of the human race during that period of time. This is so hard to imagine. This is aworld where there is no wrong happening. Whilst it will be a wonderful time for those who are involved, there is a warning that it is not quite over, as evil will get one more chance.

At the end of that period, the devil is released to once again deceive the world. During this period he raises yet another army of followers (some people never learn) but that army is destroyed and, along with the devil, is dropped into total destruction in the Lake of Fire. The human race is then judged. All people who have lived from the beginning of time are judged on how they have lived. Those deemed as righteous are to have eternal life whilst the rest are cast into the Lake of Fire.

The remainder of the book is devoted to John's endeavour to describe, in human language, what is really indescribable - the everlasting paradise we refer to as heaven.

In Matthew Chapter 24, there is a very great message of comfort. In verse 22, we are told that, fortunately for us, God has reduced the number of days in the end time, otherwise none of us would survive.

In conclusion, I repeat what I said at the beginning of this message. I am not saying that what associations I have made here are truly the fulfilment of a large number of prophecies that are found in the Book Of Revelation, what I am saying is that they are certainly capable of fulfilling them.

Copyright R. J.. Burling 28th October, 2013

ADDENDUM:  Since the writing of this message, I have discovered a very recent video that deals with further links between Islam and The Book of Revelation. This video, approximately 50 minutes in length, has some extensive imformation regarding the prophecies relating to Babylon. I found this extensive study fitting very closely with the rest of this message. The reference to this video is called Babylon The Great & The Turkish Antichrist - ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uY20IFaWlsQ&feature=share ). I recommend you look at this video.

Copyright R. J. Burling 7th December, 2013


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