European Babylonian Unity Poster
Is there an Islamic Antichrist as opposed to a European one? A reader forwarded me a couple of articles related to author Joel Richardson who believes that Europe will not rise up and become the Beast power that the Bible warns about. Here is the beginning of one of them:
EU collapse: Doom for popular Bible prophesies?
WND – May 30, 2010By Joel Richardson [author of "The Islamic Antichrist".]
Nearly 20 years ago, I intently watched as a very popular Christian television prophecy teacher declared, “The present formation of the European Union is literally the fulfillment of Bible prophecy right before our eyes!”
According to this teacher, the creation of the European Union represented a biblically prophesied revived Roman Empire. Because the last-days empire of the Antichrist, as described in the books of Daniel and Revelation, is portrayed as a 10-nation alliance, this teacher confidently declared that when the number of EU member states reached 10, this would signal the imminent return of Jesus Christ.
Soon, the number of EU member states reached the magic number 10, just as this teacher had predicted. Then the number reached 11, and then 12. Soon there were 20. Today there are 27 member states. The teacher’s very confident predictions failed. http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=160393
There are many problems with the above. But the one to mention here is that the Bible does not say that the Beast power will only have ten nations. Notice what the Bible actually states:
12 The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast. 13 These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast. (Revelation 17:12-13)
The above prophecy is clear that the Beast power will be composed of ten kings who did not previously have a specific kingdom. Or in words, the prophecy in Revelation 17:12-13 is most certainly not teaching that the Beast power will be composed of ten nations in the form that they existed prior to some type of structural reorganization. The fact that some prophecy “experts” may have indicated otherwise does not in fact change the actual prophecy from the Bible.
Joel Richardson also wrote:
Since 1993, with the official formation of the European Union, many prophecy teachers have set their prophetic imagination like flint on Europe, confident that someday soon, the EU would invade the Nation of Israel and actually dominate the whole earth.
Surely we are witnessing the emergence of the restored Roman Empire that will ultimately come to be controlled by the Antichrist himself, they would declare. But the present harsh realities in Europe may soon cause all of this Euro-centric, restored Roman Empire prognosticating to come crashing down...
As the world watches, the European Union seems to be teetering ever closer toward the brink of collapse with its massive debt crisis. Member nations are fighting to prop up the euro and maintain European unity through, you guessed it, a mega-billion dollar bailout. Meanwhile, Greece’s economic failure continues to metastasize across its borders. Numerous headlines across the globe are asking if the EU can survive.
However, it is precisely because there will be problems in Europe that it will need a powerful leader to rise up and lead it. The Bible is clear that the union in the Beast’s territories will be “fragile” (Daniel 2:42-43). It also is clear that the Beast leader will be successful from a military perspective (Revelation 13:1-4).
In contrast to Joel Richardson, let’s look at some of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
There have been writings from various Catholics suggesting that prior to the rise of a “Great Monarch,” Catholics will become lax in their religion and something will happen in Europe.
Some believe that God will punish the nominal Catholics with civil unrest and war in Europe… here already has been civil unrest in Europe…Some believe this civil unrest will result in the rise of a militaristic leader who will quell that particular violence, establish a new religious order, and reign with a pope who will perform miracles…
The descriptions of the Great Monarch/Prince in many ways parallel the description of one the Bible refers to as the “prince” in Daniel 9:26–27, final “King of the North” in Daniel 11:27–45…
And while many do not consider that the European Union is much of a military power that perception is likely to change in or after 2013.
Why 2013 or after?
In 2013, the Europeans are planning on having their own global positioning system (GPS), called Galileo, available for military applications…Because the Europeans will be able to control Galileo, they will also likely be capable of derailing certain sophisticated U.S. military applications. This will give the Europeans a unique defensive (as well as offensive) capability that no others on the planet will have.
But there is more. The Europeans now also have the world’s leading-edge physics project called the Large Hadron Collider (the world’s largest and highest-energy particle accelerator)…The Bible is clear that the final “Beast power” (which will be primarily European) will have such unique military capabilities that the entire world will marvel (cf. Revelation 13:3–4). It appears that these capabilities are being developed now.
Which book is right?
According to the Bible, it will be a European power that will rise up (Daniel 9:26-27). Notice what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
While there have been various understandings of the Daniel 9:26–27, notice what…Protestant commentators basically correctly state (bolding/italics in source):
Matthew Henrys Commentary: It is here foretold that the people of the prince that shall come shall be the instruments of this destruction, that is, the Roman armies, belonging to a monarchy yet to come…That the desolation shall be total and final: He shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, that is, he shall make it completely desolate…And when it is made desolate, it should seem, there is something more determined that is to be poured upon the desolate (v. 27), and what should that be but the spirit of slumber…
Wycliffe Bible Commentary: C. F. Keil (Comm., in loco) is correct in asserting that the prince is said to be coming (habba’), because he has already been introduced and discussed in the prophecy of chapter 7…The Romans who destroyed Jerusalem (A.D. 70) were his people because they and he belong to the fourth stage (the Roman) of world empire (chs. 2; 7)…
The two commentaries correctly identified this leader as one who will be part of a “Roman Empire,” and is also the leader warned about in Daniel 7:23–26…And lest some feel that the idea of a European deal with Israel is far-fetched, even within Israel, many suggested such a deal.
Getting back to his interpretation of the Bible, Joel Richardson also wrote:
In fact, going back to the first few centuries of the church, the consistent testimony of the early believers is that the Antichrist, his empire and his religion would arise from out of the Middle East, and not Europe.
That is simply not really the case. Here is more of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
The first early writing that has been found suggests that a Roman, or the Roman Empire, is 666, was by Irenaeus (who was likely influenced by Polycarp). In the 2nd century, Irenaeus wrote:
Then also Lateinos (LATEINOS) has the number six hundred and sixty-six; and it is a very probable [solution], this being the name of the last kingdom [of the four seen by Daniel].
The late John Ogwyn wrote this about 666:
The earliest proposed solution to the meaning of 666 is a tradition attributed to Polycarp, the disciple of the same Apostle John who wrote Revelation. This tradition is preserved in the second century writings of Irenaeus. The number 666 is “…contained in the Greek letters of Lateinos (L=30; A=1; T=300; E,=5; I=10; N=50; O=70; S=200)” (Commentary on the Whole Bible, Jamieson, Fausset and Brown). Lateinos is a Greek term referring to the Romans. Interestingly, the Greek expression meaning “the Latin kingdom” (h Latine Basileia) also has a numeric value of 666. Greek writers commonly referred to the Roman Empire in this way. The book of Revelation was originally written in Greek, as it was written to Greek-speaking churches in ancient Asia Minor…
The founder of ancient Rome was Romulus, from whose name Rome and Roman are derived. The Latin name Romvlvs is written in Hebrew as Romiith. In the Hebrew language this also adds up to 666 (resh=200, vau=6, mem=40, yod=10, yod=10, tau=400). Thus, in both Greek and Hebrew, the two languages of the Bible, the number 666 is stamped upon the kingdom that derived from Rome
Thus, 666 will be the leader of the revived Roman Empire—an empire that seemed to suffer from a “deadly wound” (cf. Revelation 13:3) centuries ago, but that is now apparently in process of forming again.
Early writers basically all felt that the 666 was stamped on the Roman Empire. Nero was probably the first person that some in the Christian era suspected. To suggest that the early Christians did not consider that the European Roman Empire was to be the final Beast power is inaccurate. The Roman Empire, though having territories in the Middle East, was based in Europe.
Notice what The Catholic Encyclopedia reports:
St. Irenæus (Haer., V, xxx) does not hesitate to explain the number of the beast 666 (Revelation 13:18) by the word “Lateinos” since the numerical value of its constituent [Greek] letters yields the same total (30+1+330+5+10+50+70+200=666); while sober critics of our own day are inclined to solve the mystery upon the same principles by simply substituting for Latinus the words Nero Caesar written in Hebrew characters which give the same result (“Use of Numbers in the Church.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 11. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 31 May 2010 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11151a.htm>).
For more on 666, please see the article Two Horned Beast of Revelation and 666.
Furthermore, both Protestant and Catholic commentators (Daniel 7:7-8. The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1962 by Moody Press) and The Prophecies of Daniel. The Original And True Douay Old Testament Of Anno Domini 1610, Volume 2. Prepared and Edited by Dr. William von Peters, Ph.D. Copyright © 2005, Dr. William G. von Peters. Ph.D. 2005 copyright assigned to VSC Corp., p. 732) agree that the last of the four kingdoms in Daniel 7:7–8 is the Roman Empire.
Further getting back to his interpretation of the Bible, Joel Richardson also wrote:
What many Westerners, and perhaps Americans most of all, often fail to recognize is the fact that the Bible is a thoroughly Eastern book. It always has been. As shocking as this may be to some, the Bible was not written primarily for Americans.
Today, many scholars, students and teachers alike are acknowledging the consistent testimony of the prophets as pointing us to the Middle East. As any realtor will tell you, it’s all about location, location, location. Likewise, as anyone astute Bible student should know, the first issue that must be established when attempting to properly interpret the Bible is context, context, context. And simply stated, the context of virtually all biblical prophecy is Israel and the Middle East.
But Joel Richardson has failed to notice several items related to the context of the location. Notice some of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
There is another reason to suspect that the area involves the territories of Europe. Millennia ago, Daniel wrote a prophecy that discussed a little horn that would mainly expand to the south and east:
8And out of one of them came a little horn which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the Glorious Land. 10 And it grew up to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and some of the stars to the ground, and trampled them. 11 He even exalted himself as high as the Prince of the host; and by him the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of His sanctuary was cast down. 12 Because of transgression, an army was given over to the horn to oppose the daily sacrifices; and he cast truth down to the ground. He did all this and prospered (Daniel 8:9-12).
And while the above has had a past fulfillment, this prophecy seems to be dual (compare with Daniel 11:27-–39)—and seems to be for our time.
What is now the EU began as a small organization involving three small countries located in the northern and western regions of Europe (Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg, called the Benelux nations)—they then helped form the European Economic Community. This European Economic Community expanded mainly south and east of the Benelux nations, into what had become the expanded European Union. Now, about 500 million people are under a new (though not completely united) government headquartered in Brussels, Belgium.
…the Bible predicts that at the appointed time, a King of the North and a King of the South with rise.
The Bible is clear that there will be both a King of the North AND a King of the South (Daniel 11:27-45). Only Europe meets all the biblical criteria for the final King of the North–and the one commonly called Antichrist is aligned with the King of the North.
City of Seven Hills and His Gaping Hole
Here are some quotes from Joel Richardson’s actual book The Islamic Empire:
Now the seven heads are seven mountains. The Bible often uses mountains as a symbol representing a kingdom or empire…the sixth empire was the Roman Empire…German Third Reich, some Bible teachers have speculated that Germany was the seventh empire and thus Germany will come back as the eighth…
There are, however, some glaring problems with this theory: First, Rome was the sixth empire. If Rome was the sixth, and will also be the last, what happened to the seventh? There theory has a gaping hole (Richardson J. The Islamic Antichrist: The Shocking Truth about the Real Nature of the Beast. WND Books. 2009, pp. 93-94)
He then tries to explain why he does not feel that the final empire can be Roman. But there are several points that he did not seem to address well in that book. He seems to confuse the empires in Daniel with those in Revelation (which is apparently how he came up with his list), plus he adds two (Egyptian and Assyrian, which were pre-Daniel) in order to get to his list.
His book seems to forget about the “Holy Roman Empire” and its many revivals (his book does not use the term “Holy Roman Empire”–they fit into the so-called “glaring hole” (for specific details on the how the Holy Roman Empire fits the related prophecies in Revelation, please see the LCG booklet by the late John Ogwyn titled The Beast of Revelation: Myth, Metaphor or Soon-Coming Reality? ).
Notice some of the scriptures about the seven mountains:
1 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and talked with me, saying to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters, 2 with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication.”
3 So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 4 The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication. 5 And on her forehead a name was written:
MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
6 I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. And when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement.
7 But the angel said to me, “Why did you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns. 8 The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
9 “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits. (Revelation 17:1-9)
The harlot woman would seem to have to be the same woman for all the empires. Joel Richardson teaches that essentially each of the empires had a different religion. This is really not consistent with what the Book of Revelation teaches.
It is the same woman “drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus”. There were no martyrs specifically of Jesus” until after He came. Yet, in Joel Richardson’s list, five of his empires were gone prior to the birth of Christ. This is part of his own “gaping hole”.
Furthermore, notice some of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
…a female can symbolize a false church according to Revelation 17:1-6…Since the Babylon in the Book of Revelation is a city on seven hills (Revelation 17:5-9), this is referring to a city such as Rome according to Catholic scholars as ancient Babylon was on a flat plain.
The above is important for at least two reasons.
The first is that the Bible clearly shows that the “woman” is based in a city:
18 And the woman whom you saw is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth. (Revelation 17:18)
Several of the six empires that Joel Richardson listed did not have anything to do with a specific “great city”.
The second is that there is one city that is located on seven hills/mountains. It is known as “the city of seven hills”. It is universally recognized that Rome is the city of seven mountains. This fact is also noted by various Protestant and even Catholic theologians. One such Catholic writer would be Yves Dupont who wrote in his book Catholic Prophecies,
The seven headed city is probably Rome (septicolis– seven hills) (Dupont Yves. Catholic Prophecy. TAN Books, 1973, p.24).
Other than Ammon Jordan, Rome is apparently one of few great cities in the world to have precisely seven hills/mountains (though there may be some less important cities with seven mountains, and there may be seven near Constantinople/Istanbul). While Rome itself was the ruling city of the Western world for several centuries, the Roman Catholic Church, whose headquarters is completely within the boundaries of Rome, has maintained tremendous influence over kings and governments of the earth for even more centuries (and in the end, an Antipope is expected to rise up according to various prophecies).
But Joel Richardson has apparently overlooked the idea of the city being on seven hills/mountains as he claims that the seven mountains are only symbolic. This is part of his “gaping hole”.
The Final Antichrist is Not Islamic
Here are a couple of other statements from his book:
…Islam is the future. Yes, you read that correctly: Islam is the future. (Richardson J. The Islamic Antichrist: The Shocking Truth about the Real Nature of the Beast. WND Books. 2009, p. 3)
He then explains that if present trends continue that Islam will be the predominant religion of the world in a relatively few years. Now, he is correct that Islam is growing, but what he does not realize is that this growth is fostering enough resentment in Europe, that this will lead a larger backlash against Islam. With the banning of burqas and other rules (see Burqa Banning in Belgium, Italy, France, and Australia), Europeans are starting to stand against Islam. And as Islam tries to intrude more into Europe, the re-emergence of a religious Europe to counter Islam is what will come to pass.
Now here is another article that discusses Joel Richardson and his views:
Author: European Antichrist looking more and more unlikelySays atheists will have field day with popular Bible interpretationWND – May 30, 2010
With Europe on the verge of economic collapse, what about all those popular predictions that the European Union would become the world’s political powerhouse, giving rise to the endtimes prophecies of a world dictator known to Bible students as the Antichrist?
Joel Richardson, author of a best-selling book on Bible prophecy, says atheists will have a field day mocking Christians for the incorrect interpretations about the last days…
His book makes the case that the biblical Antichrist is one and the same as the Quran’s Muslim Mahdi.
“The Bible abounds with proofs that the Antichrist’s empire will consist only of nations that are, today, Islamic,” says Richardson. http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=160357
Like some who even claim COG affiliation, this Joel Richardson gives his reasons, but they are in error.
The Islamic Mahdi better meets the geographic region for the final King of the South, not the King of the North. Most of the Arab nations are south of Jerusalem, while nearly all the European nations are basically north of it. Even Iran, a country that is working towards the emergence of the Mahdi, does not meet the geographic criteria for either King (though it may support the coming King of the South). Since the final Beast power is also the one known as the King of the North, Joel Richardson’s views of an Islamic Antichrist do not fit his own criteria about location. Antichrist, in the normally-used sense, will be involved with a European power (and he will be primarily a religious leader–the final Antichrist is the False Prophet of Revelation, as opposed to being the final Beast).
Here is some of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches about the final Antichrist:
The terms ‘antichrist’ and ‘antichrists’ are only used in the Bible five times (four and one respectively), and are only found in four verses of the Bible—all written by the Apostle John.
Those verses are II John 7, I John 2:18, I John 2:22, and I John 4:3. As all of them discuss some aspect of theology, they suggest that the final Antichrist is mainly a religious figure…
This scripture similarly states that the “spirit of Antichrist” is not confessing that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh. It also shows that apparently some of Antichrist’s teachings began when John was still alive.
These verses specifically tie in the idea that false prophets have the spirit of Antichrist. Thus, it would seem consistent with these passages to conclude that the final Antichrist would be a false prophet (which is a term that John uses later in the Book of Revelation)…
Who is the Antichrist?
The first Beast, also known as 666, is not the Antichrist, because the first Beast of Revelation 13 is not mainly a religious leader.
The second beast in Revelation 13 is primarily a religious leader (even though he has political influence). He promotes religious worship and is also referred to in other scriptures as “the false prophet” (Revelation 16:13; 19:20; 20:10).
As far as the final Mahdi is concerned, notice some of what the book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect teaches:
Now, it needs to be made clear that the Bible predicts the rise in the end time of a Future King of the South (see Appendix B)—and this person may be the one that Muslims will consider to be their prophesied “Mahdi.”…
Some in Islam seem to believe that the reign of the Beast and Antichrist will happen after the Mahdi’s death. Now this is true, to a degree, for the Arab lands. However, the Beast (King of the North) and the final Antichrist (False Prophet) will rule in Europe and in some of the American land, prior to the European reign over Arab lands (hence the final Antichrist will have power prior to the death of the biblical King of the South, who seems to be the Islamic Mahdi)…
40 “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through.”
The one called the King of the South in the above passage may be one with the title “Mahdi.” And while Shi’ite (and some other Muslims) consider that he will be “a saviour” and establish an Islamic world, the Bible clearly shows that the King of the North will defeat him (see also Daniel 11:41-43).
The reality is that while an Islamic leader will rise up, he will be the final King of the South, not the final King of the North. It is the Beast power of the King of the North that the final Antichrist will be aligned with.
Thus, Joel Richardson’s interpretations are in error from a biblical perspective. Even if some signs suggest to others that the final King of the South will be (some Islamic prophecy indicates certain mystic signs associated with him), the fact is that the Bible clearly shows that the King of the South will be taken over by the King of the North:
40 At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through. (Daniel 11:40)
The King of the South, who is expected to be an Islamic leader, does not survive in the end. The King of the South does not meet the criteria for the Beast power in the Book of Revelation. The countries of the Middle East are overwhelmed by the King of the North.
It is not that in no sense would a false religious leader, like the Islamic Mahdi Imam be an Antichrist, but the King of the South is not the final Antichrist. The one commonly known as the final Antichrist will be supporting a European Beast power, that will destroy America (Daniel 11:39) and ultimately control much or all of the Middle East (Daniel 11:40-43). The final Antichrist will not be an Islamic Antichrist.
To see even more about these end time events, please check out the following and compare what they teach with your own Bible:
Can You Prove that the Beast to Come is European? The Book of Revelation tells of a beast power that will rise up. Some think that this must be Russia or could be Islamic, while others say that this power is European. The Book of Daniel tells of the rise of an end time King of the North that some think must be referring to a Russian leader, while others say that this power is European. How can you be sure? This YouTube video has all the scriptural proofs that you should need to prove that this power must be a European one.
Who is the King of the North? Is there one? Do biblical and Roman Catholic prophecies for the Great Monarch point to the same leader? Should he be followed? Who will be the King of the North discussed in Daniel 11? Is a nuclear attack prophesied to happen to the English-speaking peoples of the United States, Great Britain, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand? When do the 1335 days, 1290 days, and 1260 days (the time, times, and half a time) of Daniel 12 begin? When does the Bible show that economic collapse will affect the United States?
Might Hindus Unknowingly Be Looking for the Arrival of the Beast and False Prophet? Do biblical and even Hindu prophecies suggest that many in India will follow, for a while, the Beast and False Prophet/Antichrist?
What Does the Bible teach about the Antichrist? This video quotes all scriptures that mention the terms Antichrist or antichrists. It also gives examples of the type of deceptions, signs, and results of the time of the final Antichrist. It mentions certain Catholic prophecies and provides some disturbing quotes about Pope Francis. It discusses Antichrist’s role in Armageddon. It quotes Jesus about the coming deception and what Christians should do.
Some Doctrines of Antichrist Are there any doctrines taught outside the Churches of God which can be considered as doctrines of antichrist? This article suggests at least three. It also provides information on 666 and the identity of “the false prophet.” Plus it shows that several Catholic writers seem to warn about an ecumenical antipope that will support heresy.