Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations?
Revelation 17:12-13 tells of two reorganizations that are to occur that will result in the rise of the final Beast power (a third happens later; cf. Revelation 17:15-17).
Some claim that these passages refer to a gathering of 10 currently existing nations together, while one group teaches that this is referring to 11 currently existing nations getting together. Is that what Revelation 17:12-13 refers to?
Those that do not understand this may find that they will not understand when the Beast power is about to start the Great Tribulation. This will prove disastrous for those who insist on a non-biblical position.
This article will examine the Bible, the position of the old Worldwide Church of God (WCG), the position of the improperly named Philadelphia Church of God (PCG), the position of the Living Church of God (LCG), and the position of the Continuing Church of God (CCOG). (A related sermon is titled Ten Kings of Revelation and the Great Tribulation.)
Let’s start by looking at what Revelation 17:12-13 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, NKJV throughout unless otherwise specified)
These ten kings have no kingdom, but are to attain one. Thus, this is a type of reorganization in verse 12. Since they give their power to the Beast in verse 13, this is a second reorganization. The “beast” is not shown to have much power prior to Revelation 17:12-13. This beast would seem to have Assyrian roots per Isaiah 10:5-11, and hence would likely be someone from Germany or Austria (see also Germany in Biblical and Catholic Prophecy).
Notice that Revelation 17:12-13 does NOT say that ten existing nations will give their power to the Beast, but that ten kings who had not had a kingdom will get power and transfer it. This, as I have written before (see Herman von Rompuy, the Greek Debt Crisis, and Where May this Lead?), means that a political/structural shift is expected to happen in Europe.
Hence while nations will be involved, this is more likely groups of nations, combinations of nations, and/or redrawn territorial borders.
The term translated in English from the Greek in Revelation 17:12, basileís (Greek characters βασιλεïς), as “kings,” essentially means "possessor of the highest office of a political realm" (Bauer’s A Greek Lexicon of the New Testament and other Early Church Literature, 3rd edition. FW Danker editor. 2000, University of Chicago Press, pp. 169-170).
Also the biblical fact that these ‘kings’ had no kingdom prior to becoming kings also helps prove that this is not a reference to ten currently existing nations. Furthermore, the term translated in English as "kingdoms" from the Greek in Revelation 17:12, basileín (Greek characters βασιλεíαν), means "royal administrations" (Ibid, pp. 168-169) is not specifically referring to existing nations.
It also should be noted that the Greek terms normally translated as “nation” or “nations” (Strong’s word 1484) is not used in Revelation 17:12. Although the term for nations is in that chapter (verse 15), it is not part of what is happening in Revelation 17:12 or 17:13. If God wanted to specify ten existing nations, He could have inspired Revelation 17:12 to be worded differently.
Yet, some have oddly concluded that Revelation 17:12 specifies that ten currently existing nations, and only ten currently existing nations, will turn their power over to ten new leaders (who will then give it to the final Beast). But that limitations on ten existing nations is not consistent with what the Greek states. And while one does not need to be an expert in Greek to understand the Bible, one should not insist that the Greek states something it does not if one truly wants to understand the Bible.
It may be of interest to note that some Catholics are looking towards the time a future leader that they call the 'Great Monarch' or the 'great prince of the North' (who is really the Beast and the final King of the North that the Bible warns against in Revelation 11:27-45) will cause a type of reorganization in Europe:
Rudolph Gekner (died 1675). "A great prince of the North with a most powerful army will traverse all Europe, uproot all republics, and exterminate all rebels. His sword moved by Divine power will most valiantly defend the Church of Jesus Christ. He will combat on behalf of the true orthodox faith, and shall subdue to his dominion the Mahometan Empire. A new pastor of the universal church will come from the shore (of Dalmatia) through a celestial prodigy, and in simplicity of heart adorned with the doctrines of Jesus Christ. Peace will come to the world." (Cited in Connor, Edward. Prophecy for Today. Imprimatur + A.J. Willinger, Bishop of Monterey-Fresno; Reprint: Tan Books and Publishers, Rockford (IL), 1984, p.36).
While we are not relying on this Catholic prediction, the Bible does show that reorganization will occur in Europe (Revelation 17:12), the Beast will persecute the faithful (Daniel 7:25) who will not wear the mark (Revelation 13:16-17) and that the King of the North will overpower the King of the South, who rules territories that are currently Muslim (Daniel 11:40-43). The Beast will also bring in a worldwide religion (Revelation 13:4,8).
Because the old Worldwide Church of God sometimes used the expression “ten nations” alone when referring to Revelation 17:12, some have seemingly concluded that the old WCG taught that this would be ten existing nations.
That is not truly the case.
FWIW, I have found at least a dozen references in magazines, booklets, books, etc. from the old WCG which demonstrate that it realized that Revelation 17:12 was absolutely not restricted to 10 currently existing nations.
Here are various quotes that prove that:
These ten nations or groups of nations, comprising the modern revived Beast...
One of these was the formation of "Benelux" — a joint customs union formed by the three nations of Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg — which actually began operation on January 1, 1948. The purpose of Benelux was to gradually reduce duties and tariffs on commerce between the three member nations to promote increased trade among themselves.
In 1951, the European Coal and Steel Community was set up which comprised six nations — the "Benelux" nations with the addition of West Germany, France, and Italy. In four years, combined steel production soared 36%, and next to the United States, they became the largest steel producer in the world!
Then, finally in 1957, these six nations signed "The Treaty of Rome," setting up the European "Common Market." OFFICIALLY IT IS CALLED EUROPEAN ECONOMIC COMMUNITY, or EEC. It went INTO FORCE on January 1, 1958.
The "Common Market" BINDS THESE NATIONS TOGETHER ECONOMICALLY. The ultimate aim of the plan is to create one solid economy between the present member nations.
But it has been made plain that the plan is NOT LIMITED only to the PRESENT SIX NATIONS. Now other nations want to join the European Economic Community. (Remember that there must be TEN NATIONS or groups of nations to comprise the final resurrection of the modern "Holy Roman Empire"!) (AMBASSADOR COLLEGE, BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE. LESSON 32 (1963, 1965, 1967, 1969)
No one knows yet just which nations will make up the final 10. The possibility always exists some nations could be considered one, such as Benelux (Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg), or two or more Balkan ' or Iberian states could be grouped together. After all, the modern borders of European nations greatly differ from the many different borders in historic times. (Kelly R. A United Europe Nearer Than You Think! Plain Truith, November-December 1985)
"And in the days of these kings..." it is here speaking of the ten toes, part of iron and part of brittle clay. This, by connecting the prophecy with Daniel 7 and Revelation 13 and 17, is referring to the new UNITED STATES OF EUROPE which is now forming, out of the European Common Market, before your very eyes! Revelation 17:12 makes plain the detail that it shall be a union of TEN KINGS OR KINGDOMS which (Rev. 17:8) shall resurrect the old ROMAN EMPIRE.
So, mark carefully the time element! "In the days of these kings" — in the days of these ten nations or groups of nations that shall, IN OUR TIME, resurrect briefly the Roman Empire — notice what shall happen:
"... shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed… but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever"! (Armstrong HW. Just What Do You Mean... The KINGDOM OF GOD? Tomorrow's World, June 1969)
"And in the days of these kings ..." it is here speaking of the ten toes, part of iron and part of brittle clay. This, by connecting the prophecy with Daniel 7, and Revelation 13 and 17, is referring to the new UNITED STATES OF EUROPE which is now forming, out of the European Common Market, before your very eyes! Revelation 17:12 makes plain the detail that it shall be a union of TEN KINGS OR KINGDOMS which (Rev. 17:8) shall resurrect the medieval "holy" ROMAN EMPIRE.
So, mark carefully the time element! "In the days of these kings" — in the days of these ten nations or groups of nations that shall, IN OUR TIME, resurrect briefly the Roman Empire — notice what shall happen:
"... shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed ... but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever"! (Armstrong HW. Incredible Human Potential, book, 1978)
"In the days of these kings"—in the days of these ten nations or groups of nations that shall, in our time, resurrect briefly the Roman Empire—notice what shall happen: "... shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed ... but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever"! (Armstronng HW. 7 PROOFS OF GOD'S TRUE CHURCH: Part Four. Plain Truth, May 1979).
Prophecy says there will be TEN NATIONS (or groups of nations such as Benelux) but it does not say WHICH nations. The WHICH nations is speculation, but current rapid-fire news happenings do give us significant clues. (Armstrong HW. Brethren & Co-Worker Letter, February 18, 1980)
That final resurrection of the Roman empire is going to be made up of ten nations or groups of nations united together in one final attempt of man to maintain human government. That union of nations will be very short lived, as we read in verse 12, and in Daniel 2:44. (Kelly R. You Can Understand Prophecy. Plain Truth, May 1983)
The Bible shows that 10 nations or groups of nations in Europe will be goaded by circumstances to unite. They will be unlikely allies, "iron mixed with miry clay" is how the Bible describes them (Dan. 2). But a common cause — or a common fear — forces them into a fragile union. (Halford J. Old Barracks and the New Europe. Plain Truth, May 1985)
This power is referred to in the Bible as the "beast" — a powerful union of 10 European nations or groups of nations to arise in the closing days of this world's civilizations (Rev. 17:12-14). This European power — led by a military superdictator also referred to in prophecy as the "beast" — will be the final, end — time revival of the medieval Holy Roman Empire. (Stump K. Just What Do You Mean - ARMAGEDDON? Plain Truth, June 1985)
These prophecies depict detailed ADVANCE NEWS of one more, last revival of this empire, yet to occur, by a union of 10 nations, or groups of nations, in Europe. (Armstrong HW. What Is Now Prophesied! Plain Truth, June 1985)
Bible prophecy reveals that an end-time revival of the ancient Roman Empire will once more arise in Europe. This confederated Europe will rapidly become an immense economic, political and military power — a Third Force in world affairs, a superpower in its own right. This powerful union, prophecy tells us, will be composed of "ten horns" — meaning 10 nations or groups of nations (Rev. 17:3).
Notice further that the ancient prophecies of Daniel picture this system as a human image standing on two legs. The original Roman Empire was broken into two "legs" — the Eastern Empire at Byzantium (Constantinople) and the Empire of the West centered at Rome. Thus it is probable that the coming reconstituted Roman Empire will also be composed of two distinct yet cooperative parts: one comprising nations of Western Europe, the other incorporating nations released from Soviet dominance in Eastern Europe.
Moreover, the 10 toes of the image of Daniel's prophecy (Dan. 2:41-43) correspond to the 10 end-time national units described as "horns" in Revelation 17. These 10 entities constitute a political system that will dominate the Western world and will exist at the return of Jesus Christ, when he will establish the kingdom of God on this earth and bring us peace at last (Dan. 2:44, 45).
Given the fact of five toes on each foot, it is possible that five entities will come from Western Europe. and five from the East. That the toes are described as being composed of "iron mixed with miry clay" indicates an imperfect adhesion. (Stump K. Soviet Economic Crisis: Prelude to United Europe? Plain Truth, January 1986)
Now, notice that several of the above were personally written by Herbert W. Armstrong himself. Quotes above go from the 1960s until being published the month he died in January 1986. He and his old church long realized that Revelation 17:12 was not restricted to ten currently existing nations.
Herbert Armstrong taught that he felt that some currently existing nations, such as Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg might be grouped together.
I would also add that at the Feast of Tabernacles in 1979 in Tuscon, AZ, the late Dr. Hoeh said that he and Herbert Armstrong were convinced that the two legs/feet of the Beast represented nations in both eastern and western Europe. The nations that were referred to in that sermon exceeded 10 or 11 in number.
Revelation 17:12-14 tell of the rise of an end-time power with ten horns that God will destroy. Daniel 2:41-44 tell of the rise of ten-toed end-time power that God will destroy.
The old WCG and others have noted a connection between the ten toes of Daniel 2:41-43 and the ten horns of Revelation 17:12. That connection is valid, but some fail to understand how Daniel 2:41-43 helps prove that Revelation 17:12 is not limited to ten currently existing nations.
Let’s look at the passages in Daniel:
41 Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; yet the strength of the iron shall be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with ceramic clay. 42 And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile. 43 As you saw iron mixed with ceramic clay, they will mingle with the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, just as iron does not mix with clay. (Daniel 2:41-43)
Notice that the toes of the feet are composed of mixed peoples. Some are iron and some are clay in some of the same toes. This would tend to prove the view that the ten horns in Revelation 17:12 is a reference to an artificial government as opposed to only being inclusive of existing individual nations. Although probably no nation is 100% ethnically consistent, many are quite consistent that way and tend to adhere to themselves.
Just like the ancient Roman Empire was composed on many peoples, so will the one warned about as the Beast power of Revelation 13,17, & 18.
Daniel 2:41-43 helps prove that Revelation 17:12-13 is not restricted to 10 existing nations.
Furthermore, since on human feet, eight of the ten toes seem to be similar in size, the analogy of toes also indicates that the ten kingdoms in the end will be somewhat similar in size. Thus, Poland and Cyprus, to cite two current EU members would likely not be equal in this final arrangement (Cyprus would likely be combined with Greece and or some other currently existing nations).
One group that has claimed to teach what the old WCG taught is the improper named Philadelphia Church of God.
The PCG is the only Church that holds onto ALL of what Christ established through Mr. Armstrong (Flurry, Gerald and Leap, Dennis. Ezra and Nehemiah: Building God's Temple. Booklet. 1997. p.29).
Yet, its position on Revelation 17:12-13 is NOT consistent with what the old WCG taught:
The EU is now comprised of 27 nations. But your Bible says it will have 10 kings. That means this political-religious union is about to be radically reduced. (Flurry G. The Holy Roman Empire Is Back! Philadelphia Trumpet. February 2010, p. 1)
The Trumpet has long forecast, based on Bible prophecy, that Europe would be dominated by a combination of 10 nations. Currently the eurozone is made up of 16.
Could this crisis be what whittles Europe down to 10 core nations? Perhaps. But as one EU senior negotiator said, “The eurozone debt crisis has a long way to run. No one knows where it is going to end up. Only one thing is sure, the eurozone will change.”
The Bible tells us that Europe will become a more unified group of 10 nations. This is where the trend is leading. Keep watching the euro crisis. (Germany and France Discussing New European Currency. June 24, 2010 | From theTrumpet.com)
“Ten kings” are going to arise—and the 28 nations currently comprising the European Union are going to be pared down to 10. (Flurry G. The Crimean Crisis Is Reshaping Europe! Philadelphia Trumpet. May-June 2014)
Despite that, PCG's Gerald Flurry posted the following:
July 31, 2015
One of the greatest prophecies in all the Bible is about the union of European nations. More specifically, it’s about the political union of 10 European nations.For decades, people in Europe have tried to forge a cohesive political union. To that end, they have created the present, loosely hinged 28-nation European Union. Yet Revelation 17 says there are going to be 10 kings there that are going to unite politically and form a real superpower: a modern-day Holy Roman Empire.
Bible prophecy also reveals that this European superpower will be led by a strong German leader who will essentially hijack the European Union.
The prophesied political union of 10 nations in Europe is being fulfilled before your eyes. And the United States is playing a key role in that union—in a negative way.
It is happening in a way that was predicted three decades ago by Herbert W. Armstrong! …
On June 16, the Congressional Budget Office warned that government debt is threatening to send U.S. economy into a death spiral.
Greece is the latest European victim of America’s debt crisis. That nation’s troubles are threatening trouble to other nations in Europe.
But they are also presenting opportunities for a more compact Europe.
The prophecy in Revelation 17 discusses the seven times that the Roman Empire would be resurrected as the Holy Roman Empire—from the Middle Ages all the way up to our present day. These resurrections are depicted as the seven heads of a beast. …
Revelation 17:12-13 is about a more streamlined Europe, and Greece’s crisis is showing us how it all will happen. These verses say, “And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.”
This is the last head of that Holy Roman Empire, and it’s going to have 10 kings. It won’t have 28 kings—it will have 10, and that is what this financial crisis is going to trigger and promote in a powerful way. …
Herbert W. Armstrong predicted years ago that the collapse of the western world’s financial system, led by the United States, would unite those 10 nations into what is called the Holy Roman Empire—led by Germany.
Yet, as quotes shown elsewhere in this article prove, Herbert W. Armstong believed that it was likely groups of nations, not only ten currently existing nations.
While there have been and likely will be more “Euro” crises and it is possible that it could be replaced as my book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect states, this insistence on a 10 existing nation EU is not biblically correct (for some other comments, see also PCG Gerald Flurry: EU to be Smaller).
Apparently because I keep pointing this out, PCG decided to change, to a degree. Here is something from Stephen Flurry in the February 2016 edition of the Philadelphia Trumpet:
Mr. Armstrong knew a 10-nation union would rise out of Europe in these latter days. ...
“So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns” (Revelation 17:3). These seven heads and 10 horns are the biblical terms used to describe the Holy Roman Empire in its seven specific stages, culminating in the final union of 10 nations, or groups of nations, at the end of this age. Here the Bible is plainly speaking of a great political beast rising in Europe, which will be led by a great European religious beast in an unholy alliance that sets out to conquer the world.
These seven successive resurrections of the Holy Roman Empire would have lapses in between, pictured by the mountain peaks and valleys in Revelation 17. As H. G. Wells wrote in The Outline of History,”The Roman Empire staggers, sprawls, is thrust off the stage, and reappears, and … it is the Church of Rome which plays the part of the magician and keeps the corpse alive.”
The 10 horns mentioned in Revelation 17 are part of the seventh head. These 10 horns are 10 heads of state in Europe that will join together 10 nations or groups as part of the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. (Flurry S. Herbert W. Armstrong’s Signature Prophecy. Philadelphia Trumpet, February 2016)
Hopefully, PCG will change its other errors as well.
As far as the current size of the Eurzone, in August 2014, the "Eurozone consisted of Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain. Other EU states (except for the United Kingdom and Denmark) are obliged to join once they meet the criteria to do so. No state has left and there are no provisions to do so or to be expelled. Monaco, San Marino, the Vatican City and Andorra have formal agreements with the EU to use the euro as their official currency and issue their own coins. Other states, like Kosovo and Montenegro, have adopted the euro unilaterally, but these countries do not formally form part of the Eurozone and do not have representation in the ECB or the Eurogroup." (Eurozone, Wikipedia, viewed 08/13/14). If the four small 'city-states' are included, there are 24 currently using the Euro in Europe as their official currencies.
The Living Church of God is teaching something similar to PCG, but with a slightly different twist.
LCG teaches that it is ten nations in Revelation 17:12, plus one more in Revelation 17:13, making a total of 11. Notice what LCG is teaching:
In recent years, as the EU grew to 27 members, skeptics criticized the biblical idea that ten nations would form the nucleus of a final Beast power in Europe (Daniel 2:41-43). However, the Bible clearly states that at the time of the end, “ten kings… will give their power and authority to the beast” (Revelation 17:12-13). If this Beast is led by a particular nation (e.g., Germany), then the total number involved could well be 11! While it is not yet clear which nations will make up the final Beast power prophesied by Daniel and the Apostle John, world events indicate that a group of 10 or 11 nations coalescing to form the final Beast power is not far-fetched, fictional, or even a far-off idea-it is a soon-coming reality! (TW News & Prophecy, May 16, 2014)
Bible prophecy reveals that the final leader of the end-time European Beast power will be an influential person who is both self-confident and arrogant (Daniel 11:36-39). This charismatic leader will lead ten nations who give their "power and authority" over to him (Revelation 17:12-13). (A Young Face Among Old European Leaders. TW News & Prophecy, July 11, 2014)
The idea of ten currently existing nations is NOT a biblical idea. Neither Daniel 2:41-43 nor Revelation 17:12 use the Herbew or Greek terms for 'nations' in conjunction with the words for ten. Although LCG is referring to Daniel, the number of toes in Daniel 2 is ten, not eleven. The European Union, itself, currently has 28 member nations.
Here is information on the European Union members:
So, those were the nations as of mid-2014. Other nations have also asked to join.
In late 2015, LCG softened its position:
Bible prophecies have long foretold the emergence of ten kings or nations in Europe in the last days. Events in Europe appear to be moving inexorably in that direction...(Winnail D. World Ahead Weekly Update, November 12, 2015).
The migration crisis, according to the Foreign Minister of Luxemburg, Jean Asselborn, “could lead to the collapse of the European Union and even to war” (EU Observer, November 9, 2015). His concern is that Europe may have “only several months time left” before a collapse of the European Union which he believes “can break apart” (ibid.). Since Luxembourg currently holds the “six-month rotating presidency of EU” and counts itself “among the bloc’s six founding states, its words carry extra weight” (ibid.). France, which used to be the leading nation in Europe on foreign affairs and diplomacy, has little to no answers, and struggles to cope with the lack of influence it now holds as it is sidelined by a resurgent Germany (The Economist, November 7, 2015).
The confusion in Europe should be no surprise to individuals following Tomorrow’s World. Bible prophecies foretold these developments thousands of years ago. Explaining the final empire of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, the prophet Daniel said, “Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided... And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile” (Daniel 2:41-42). This end-time European power will have links to the ancient Roman Empire. If a EU break-up does occur soon, watch for a smaller group of nations to emerge (possibly 10) that will form a close alliance with the Catholic Church (see Revelation 17). (TW News & Prophecy, May 16, 2014)
Actually, because of its twists and changes in teachings, those who are following Tomorrow’s World will be confused as, unless it changes, I do not believe that LCG will know when Revelation 17:12-13 is being fulfilled nor when the Great Tribulation will begin before it is too late.
In 2016, LCG went back to pushing the ten nations concept:
Although the current configuration in Europe will undoubtedly change, we need to watch for a streamlining of EU nations, very likely into a group of ten, based on prophecies in Revelation 17.(Future EU Army. TW News & Prophecy, July 8, 2016)
In addition to some of the arguments that I have addressed in this article, those in LCG sometimes indicate that the Beast power will not include the “Israelite-descended” nations that are in Europe:
Switzerland’s vote shows the growing divide between the EU and certain states, revealing the “iron and clay nature” of this unnatural, multinational entity (Daniel 2:40-41). It also suggests that the Israelite-descended nations at the end of the age—likely including Switzerland—will not be part of the final European Beast power, but could become subservient to it (Deuteronomy 28:47-50; Ezekiel 39:23, 28)! Watch for more changes in Europe before the final ten kings/nations of the Beast appear (Daniel 2:42; Revelation 17). (TW News & Prophecy, February 14, 2014).
Divisive decisions by the European elite appear to be further fracturing long-standing relationships within the EU, while Britain is taking actions that further alienate it from nations once seen as friends. This corresponds with ancient Bible prophecies that place Israelite-descended nations like Britain on the "outside" of the final Beast power that will emerge in Europe (see Ezekiel 23:9-10, 22-30; Hosea 5:1-9; 11:3-7). (A Divisive Head for Europe. TW News & Prophecy, June 27, 2014).
Let's address the scriptures that LCG brought up to attempt to prove this, starting with Deuteronomy 28:
47 "Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joy and gladness of heart, for the abundance of everything, 48 therefore you shall serve your enemies, whom the Lord will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in need of everything; and He will put a yoke of iron on your neck until He has destroyed you. 49 The Lord will bring a nation against you from afar, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flies, a nation whose language you will not understand, 50 a nation of fierce countenance, which does not respect the elderly nor show favor to the young. 51 And they shall eat the increase of your livestock and the produce of your land, until you are destroyed; they shall not leave you grain or new wine or oil, or the increase of your cattle or the offspring of your flocks, until they have destroyed you.
52 "They shall besiege you at all your gates until your high and fortified walls, in which you trust, come down throughout all your land; and they shall besiege you at all your gates throughout all your land which the Lord your God has given you. (Deuteronomy 28:47-52)
Deuteronomy 28:47-50 is a reference to Israelite nations with high defenses from outside forces. Yet, That simply is not the case of the Israelite nations within continental Europe. Furthermore, that prophecy states that the enemy will come from AFAR, FROM THE END OF THE EARTH. And while that could apply to nations like the USA and Canada, it certainly does not apply to continental Europe as LCG is indicating.
Ezekiel 39:23,28 could be relevant, but this is not a clear reference to what happens at the time of Revelation 17:12. It should be noted that Ezekiel 5 shows that after the USA and probably its Anglo-Saxon descended allies are eliminated, problems will spread to "ALL the house of Israel":
1 "And you, son of man, take a sharp sword, take it as a barber's razor, and pass it over your head and your beard; then take scales to weigh and divide the hair. 2 You shall burn with fire one-third in the midst of the city, when the days of the siege are finished; then you shall take one-third and strike around it with the sword, and one-third you shall scatter in the wind: I will draw out a sword after them. 3 You shall also take a small number of them and bind them in the edge of your garment. 4 Then take some of them again and throw them into the midst of the fire, and burn them in the fire. From there a fire will go out into all the house of Israel. (Ezekiel 5:1-4)
Notice that after 1/3 is destroyed by fire (perhaps a reference to nuclear or other weapons of mass destruction), a third struck by other weapons, and one-third will be scattered, then there is other fire and after all of that, "fire will go out into ALL the house of Israel." Consider also the order in the following:
16 'For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions.' (Ezekiel 37:16)
Notice that the Anglo-Saxons (Joseph and Ephraim) are mentioned first before all of the house of Israel--this seems to be another scripturally slight separation between the descendants of Joseph (Ephraim and Manasseh and the other tribes of Israel).. The fire in Ezekiel 5:4 originally does not affect ALL, but only part of the descendants of Israel (the USA and its Anglo-Saxon allies), as ALL of Israel is mentioned later. Similarly, Hosea talks first of Samaria (prophetically the USA) being cut off, then Israel:
7 As for Samaria, her king is cut off
Like a twig on the water.
8 Also the high places of Aven, the sin of Israel,
Shall be destroyed.
The thorn and thistle shall grow on their altars;
They shall say to the mountains, "Cover us!"
And to the hills, "Fall on us!" (Hosea 10:7-8)
Samaria is destroyed when Ephraim is in Ezekiel 5:1-3. Samaria, the nation with the strongest fortresses (Daniel 11:39), is destroyed at the beginning of the time of Jacob's trouble (Jeremiah 30:7). And the time when some say to the mountains, 'fall on us,' happens later in Revelation 6:16.
Hosea also indicated that Ephraim (the British-descended nations) could be cut off before the rest of Israel:
8 "How can I give you up, Ephraim?
How can I hand you over, Israel? (Hosea 11:8)
So, there seem to be scriptures suggestive of delays between when the sons of Joseph get cut off and then the rest of Israel.
Perhaps it should to be pointed out that several of the "Israelite nations' are ethnically mixed (per Davidiy Y. The Tribes, 4th edition. Russell-David Publishers, 2011 and other sources) and it may take them some time for the actual Israelites to separate out.
LCG pointed to Ezekiel 23:9-10, but that is a reference to Samaria, although LCG left out citing that:
Samaria is Oholah, and Jerusalem is Oholibah.
5 "Oholah played the harlot even though she was Mine;
And she lusted for her lovers, the neighboring Assyrians,
6 Who were clothed in purple,
Captains and rulers,
All of them desirable young men,
Horsemen riding on horses.
7 Thus she committed her harlotry with them,
All of them choice men of Assyria;
And with all for whom she lusted,
With all their idols, she defiled herself.
8 She has never given up her harlotry brought from Egypt,
For in her youth they had lain with her,
Pressed her virgin bosom,
And poured out their immorality upon her.
9 "Therefore I have delivered her
Into the hand of her lovers,
Into the hand of the Assyrians,
For whom she lusted.
10 They uncovered her nakedness,
Took away her sons and daughters,
And slew her with the sword;
She became a byword among women,
For they had executed judgment on her. (Ezekiel 23:4-10)
Biblical prophecies related to Samaria tie it in with Manasseh, the USA:
8 The Lord sent a word against Jacob,
And it has fallen on Israel.
9 All the people will know —
Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria —
Who say in pride and arrogance of heart:
10 'The bricks have fallen down,
But we will rebuild with hewn stones;
The sycamores are cut down,
But we will replace them with cedars."
11 Therefore the Lord shall set up
The adversaries of Rezin against him,
And spur his enemies on,
12 The Syrians before and the Philistines behind;
And they shall devour Israel with an open mouth.
For all this His anger is not turned away,
But His hand is stretched out still...
21 Manasseh shall devour Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh;
Together they shall be against Judah.
For all this His anger is not turned away,
But His hand is stretched out still. (Isaiah 9:8-12,21)
1"When I would have healed Israel,
Then the iniquity of Ephraim was uncovered,
And the wickedness of Samaria.
For they have committed fraud;
A thief comes in;
A band of robbers takes spoil outside.
2 They do not consider in their hearts
That I remember all their wickedness;
Now their own deeds have surrounded them;
They are before My face.
3 They make a king glad with their wickedness,
And princes with their lies. (Hosea 7:1-3)
Since this is a reference to Manasseh, Ezekiel 23:4-10, which talks about being betrayed by those that are trusted, does not seem to be directly related to European-based Israelites. Obadiah 17-18 also ties Samaria as one of the descendents of Joseph as well. Currently, the USA has alliances with Assyria/Germany/Europe. such as NATO.
Hosea 5:1-9 tells of Ephraim (the UK and its Anglo-Saxon allies) and Judah. Notice that Ephraim and Judah are affected before others in Israel are:
1 "Hear this, O priests! Take heed, O house of Israel! Give ear, O house of the king! For yours is the judgment, Because you have been a snare to Mizpah And a net spread on Tabor. 2 The revolters are deeply involved in slaughter, Though I rebuke them all. 3 I know Ephraim, And Israel is not hidden from Me; For now, O Ephraim, you commit harlotry; Israel is defiled.
4 "They do not direct their deedsToward turning to their God, For the spirit of harlotry is in their midst, And they do not know the Lord. 5 The pride of Israel testifies to his face; Therefore Israel and Ephraim stumble in their iniquity; Judah also stumbles with them.
6 "With their flocks and herds They shall go to seek the Lord, But they will not find Him; He has withdrawn Himself from them. 7 They have dealt treacherously with the Lord, For they have begotten pagan children. Now a New Moon shall devour them and their heritage.
8 "Blow the ram's horn in Gibeah,The trumpet in Ramah! Cry aloud at Beth Aven,'Look behind you, O Benjamin!' 9 Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke; Among the tribes of Israel I make known what is sure.
10 "The princes of Judah are like those who remove a landmark; I will pour out My wrath on them like water. 11 Ephraim is oppressed and broken in judgment, Because he willingly walked by human precept. 12 Therefore I will be to Ephraim like a moth, And to the house of Judah like rottenness.
13 "When Ephraim saw his sickness, And Judah saw his wound,Then Ephraim went to Assyria And sent to King Jareb; Yet he cannot cure you, Nor heal you of your wound. 14 For I will be like a lion to Ephraim, And like a young lion to the house of Judah.I, even I, will tear them and go away; I will take them away, and no one shall rescue. 15 I will return again to My place Till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face; In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me." (Hosea 5:1-13)
Verse 9 is consistent with what I believe that Ezekiel 5:4 teaches. The 'Look behind you, O Benjamin!'comment is an interesting one. Although much of Benjamin was part of Judah, the old WCG taught, based upon historical records and Genesis 49:27, that the former vikings, now of Norway and Iceland, best represented Benjamin (LOCATION OF THE TRIBES OF ISRAEL by Herman L Hoeh (ca. 1957) http://www.giveshare.org/israel/locationtribes.html). "Looking behind" could be a reference to them looking towards the UK, which is the leader of Ephraim. Thus, Hosea 5:8 may be another warning that the remaining tribes of Israel will be affected after the Manasseh (USA, possibly referred to as Israel above, cf. Genesis 48:13-16) and Ephraim (UK and its Anglo-Saxon descended allies).
Hosea 11:3-7 tells of at least part of Ephraim not being able to get assistance from Assyria:
3 "I taught Ephraim to walk,Taking them by their arms; But they did not know that I healed them. 4 I drew them with gentle cords, With bands of love,And I was to them as those who take the yoke from their neck. I stooped and fed them.
5 "He shall not return to the land of Egypt; But the Assyrian shall be his king,Because they refused to repent. 6 And the sword shall slash in his cities,Devour his districts,And consume them,Because of their own counsels. 7 My people are bent on backsliding from Me. Though they call to the Most High, None at all exalt Him. (Hosea 11:3-7)
None of the scriptures LCG listed are directly applicable to any of the other Israelite-descended nations in Europe departing prior to the start of the Great Tribulation.
The reason I mention all of this is that LCG has been leaning towards a doctrinal change, which it has somewhat adopted, that the Israelite descended nations of Europe will not be part of the 'ten kings,' which LCG has been insisting are ten (or eleven) currently existing nations, that will make up the final European Beast power of Revelation 17:12. This is not consistent with what the Bible actually teaches about the ten kings in Revelation 17:12, nor the historical position of the old Radio or old Worldwide Church of God.
Let us look at this potential removal of Israelitish nations issue briefly and see the count of the nations in Europe without those who are considered to be Israelite descended.
There were 12 tribes of Israel, plus a half tribe if you will, so a total of 13. The tribes of Simon and Levi were prophesied to be scattered (Genesis 49:5-7), thus they do not represent a single nation in Europe--some believe that much of Levi ended up with Judah. Manasseh and Judah represent two nations whose descendants do not comprise a nation that is in Europe (the USA and the nation of Israel). Thus, this potentially leaves 9 (13-4). But since Switzerland and Norway are not in the EU (though that could change), this leaves 7 ‘Israelitish” nations currently in the EU.
Even if the nine European nations of Montenegro, Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine, Albania, Kosovo, Moldova, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Macedonia do not join the European Union (EU) as many expect, this leaves 21 nations in the EU not counting the Israelitish nations.
Notice something that was in this article since 2014:
While I do expect violent unrest in Europe, and some losses to Europe including the United Kingdom, this does not mean that the final beast power will have to be restricted to 10-11 existing nations.
I only indented it now, because that happened. But its happening does not change the biblical realities.
Sometimes when I was part of LCG, LCG published something similar to the statement about the final Beast power being 10 nations without insisting as strongly as it did in 2014. When that happened, I would work with them to show that the Bible does not teach that it must be 10 current nations. LCG used to acquiesce to me on that, but now that I am out of that group, LCG seemingly is insisting on a position that is not required by the Bible. LCG needs to change and properly teach prophetic sequencing. I am still willing to assist LCG as well as other groups on this, if they truly will love the truth over improperly published positions.
It should also be noted that LCG had historically taught that several Israelite-descended nations were key to the formation of what became the European Union. Notice something from its Dr. Meredith and the late John Ogwyn:
Europe is proceeding toward a unification that would have seemed improbable to most on that day in March 1957 when France, Germany, Italy and the Benelux nations signed the Treaty of Rome, establishing the European Economic Community.(Meredith RC. Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ's Return. LCG booklet)
Daniel also described a little horn coming up, rising out of that same Roman Empire, that would think to change times and laws, that would persecute the true people of God, and that would play a remarkable role in the history of Europe and the revival of Roman rule in the establishment of what came to be known as the "Holy Roman Empire." (Ogwyn J. A Great Historical Hoax. LCG Commentary. http://www.tomorrowsworld.org/commentary/a-great-historical-hoax#sthash.WYJv783f.dpuf
The late Dr. Hoeh, under Herbert Armstrong's direction, taught that this little horn of Daniel 8 was the power that would become the final King of the North:
Turn in your Bible to verse 9: "And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land." ...
The King of the North
The little horn in Daniel 8 is none other than the LAST KING of one of the four divisions of Alexander's Empire. He is, in fact, the final "King of the North" described in Daniel 11. (Hoeh H. The 2300 Days. Plain Truth, August 1965)
Furthermore, and I believe it was in a sermon, at least one LCG minister taught that the Benelux nations were a representation of the 'little horn' that developed into the European Union consistent with the prophecy in Daniel 8:9-12. Partially because of that, when I was then part of LCG, Dr. Meredith concurred with that when he in 2009 endorsed my book 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect which stated the following:
Millennia ago, Daniel wrote a prophecy that discussed a little horn that would mainly expand to the south and east:
8 And 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. (Thiel B. 2012 and the Rise of the Secret Sect. Nazarene Books, 2009)
For some in LCG to now teach that the Israelite-descended nations are not to be part of the final European Beast power is in seeming contradiction to previously taught and endorsed LCG positions. And it should be emphasized that the late Herbert W. Armstrong himself endorsed that the Benelux nations would be part of the final European power on Revelation 17 (Armstrong HW. Brethren & Co-Worker Letter, February 18, 1980). His church, as well as LCG, also taught that the final Beast power would be a resurrection of the old 'Holy Roman Empire,' a group that included parts of at least six Israelitish-descended nations.
LCG has made several statements about the role of France:
French Influence in Europe Waning
Bible prophecy reveals the Israelite-descended nations will go into captivity under the European “beast” power at the time of the end. But, will France be inside or outside the “beast” power? The increasing EU frustration with France will be interesting to watch. (French Influence in Europe Waning. TW News & Prophecy, March 27, 2015).
France’s Tumble from the Top
France has been a major player in the development of the EU. However, France is an Israelite-descended nation. (France’s Tumble from the Top. TW News & Prophecy, June 30, 2014).
Whom Will France Support?
As core nations in the EU seek to form a European military, Britain and France are formulating other plans. ...
For decades the Church of God has taught that a European Beast power composed of 10 nations or kings will emerge at the end of the age and play a dominant role in the world (Revelation 17 and 18). Bible prophecies indicate that most Israelite nations will not be a part of this empire (Ezekiel 23:9, 22-27; Hosea 11:5-7; Amos 5:3). The question is, will France support Europe or join with “brother” England? Time will tell. (Whom Will France Support? TW News & Prophecy, November 11, 2013).
Will France Exit the EU? ...
While France may not leave the EU in the immediate future, the Front National’s win highlights changing political winds in France and the growing unrest with the Brussels-centered EU. Some experts suggest this recent local election win is just the “tip of the iceberg”...
For decades the Church of God has understood that the end-time European Beast power will be ten kings or nations who give their power to that Beast (see Revelation 17). Bible prophecies indicate that most Israelite-descended nations will be overcome by that Beast and not be part of it (Ezekiel 23:9, 22-27; Hosea 11:5-7; Amos 5:3). It will be interesting to see what France will do. (Will France Exit the EU? TW News & Prophecy, October 21, 2013)
A coming "world political authority"? ...
The Bible predicts that, at the time of the end, ten kings will temporarily give their authority in an uneasy alliance to the “King of the North” (Daniel 2:41-43; Revelation 17:12-13)! The result will be a German-dominated European economic, military and religious superpower. It will reign for a short time, and it will not be friendly to the United States, England or France. A coming "world political authority"? TW News & Prophecy, November 3, 2011)
This view differs from what the late evangelist Dibar Apartian wrote:
This soon-coming union of ten nations or governments prophetically represents the last "head" of the resurrected "beast"-the revival of the "Holy Roman Empire" (Rev. 17 :9- 1 2). But contrary to what you may think, it wiIl NOT consist only of Gentile nations. It will INCLUDE a group of ISRAELITISH nations. "Come out of her , my people," says God in Revelation 18:4. "My people" means Israelites in Bible prophecy. Yes, once again, Joseph' s own brothers will sell him to the Gentiles!
Once again REUBEN (the first-born of Jacob who anciently conspired with his brothers, will "act" in terms of saving him, but end · up by compromising with his brothers to send him into CAPTIVITY. (Apartian D. De Gaulle and the Next World War. Plain Truth, September 1964, p. 11)
This Union of 10 Kingdoms is already in formation in Europe. In fact, France is at present one of its key members. As this prophecy reveals, this union will receive authority "for one hour" only-that is, a short time-because it is like "iron mixed with miry clay" (Dan. 2:43) ...
During the last two WORLD WARS France was at the side of her natural allies, the Anglo-Saxons. They are, indeed, her natural allies because the French people, in turn, are the modern DESCENDANTS of one of the twelve tribes of Israel, namely REUBEN! The situation, however, will be quite different during the next WORLD WAR, France will no longer fight at the side of her former allies; she will turn AGAINST them. The descendants of Reuben will play their part in selling into slavery their brother Joseph - just as Reuben did some 3700 years ago. You are now beginning to see why the relations between the United States of America and France are gradually deteriorating. (Apartian D. France: The Enigma of our Time. Plain Truth, August 1966, pp. 11-12)
There were several doctrinal and other concerns that Dibar Apartian had about LCG before he died (see Remembering evangelist Dibar Apartian), and this seems to have been one of them.
The late Herbert W. Armstrong agreed with Dibar Apartian here:
Poland, and as you know Romania is not really very enthusiastic with the Soviet, and neither is Yugoslavia. And I can begin to see some of those nations breaking loose from the Russian orbit and going in.
Instead of the Scandinavian nations, they will go in with France and Germany; and with Spain and Portugal and Italy, and form the ten ... with the Roman...and that will be the same territory that was occupied by the old Roman Empire. That is coming along. (Armstrong HW. Beasts of Daniel and Revelation. Bible Study, Date: November 8, 1980)
So, this is another change that some in LCG seem to wish to promote.
(More on Reuben and France is in the article The 'Lost Tribe' of Reuben: France in Prophecy?)
As far as "core Europe" goes, this is something that LCG brings up from time to time. Here are several such events:
Since meetings in Brussels ended on June 23, 2007, a two-track “United Europe” of several core nations united as one, with many additional satellite nations, now appears to be on the horizon. ... This core group could become the end-time Roman Empire, which will consist of ten nations, pictured as ten horns on a fearsome beast in Bible prophecy. (Ponder C. Europe a step closer to reviving the Holy Roman Empire! LCG Commentary, July 7, 2007)
Events in Europe are driving a wedge between Britain and the core nations of the EU (including Germany). (BREXIT and Germany. TW News & Prophecy, May 20, 2016)
Bible prophecy and an understanding of the true identity of the Israelite-descended nations make it clear that Britain and France are actually brothers. These current military actions bear watching in light of the prophesied future of the Israelite-descended nations during the great tribulation. Will greater cooperation between these two nations occur, or will France be pulled further into the core of Europe, as author Christopher Booker suggests (Telegraph, October 23, 2010)? (British-French defense agreement. Monday, November 15, 2010; http://www.lcg.org/cgi-bin/lcg/newsprophecy/lcg-np.cgi?category=NewsProphecy1&item=1289516674 viewed 12/20/14)
As core nations in the EU seek to form a European military, Britain and France are formulating other plans. ...
The question is, will France support Europe or join with “brother” England? (Whom Will France Support? Monday, November 11, 2013; http://www.lcg.org/cgi-bin/lcg/newsprophecy/lcg-np.cgi?category=NewsProphecy1&item=1383867981 viewed 12/20/14)
Although many of the 28 member-nations of the European Union may retreat to their original boundaries, it appears that a smaller core of European nations will emerge from the current turmoil. Bible prophecy has long foretold that at the end of the age, a group of ten European kings (or nations) will “give their power and authority” to a Beast. This short-lived political union will cooperate with and be influenced by a great world-church (see Revelation 17). Events in Europe are fitting into ancient Bible prophecies. (EU Will Collapse Like Roman Empire! TW News & Prophecy, December 4, 2015)
LCG apparently has not been sure if agreed with the late Dibar Apartian on this.
It was the position of the old WCG that Benelux and France were part of core Europe:
"core Europe," essentially the six original members — Germany, France, Italy and the Benelux nations. (Hogberg G. What is a West German. Plain Truth, September 1985)
LCG seems to have either misunderstood what the old WCG taught or some there have decided to change on this. Groups that do not understand the role of the Israelitish nations on this are holding positions contrary to the Bible as the beasts of Daniel 2 and 7 clearly included lands that were dominated by Israelitish peoples while under the domination ancient Rome, as well as the 'Holy Roman Empire." Those who misunderstand this are likely to not truly realize when the final Beast power has formed.
On December 4, 2015, LCG put out the following headline in its TW News & Prophecy e-zine:
EU Will Collapse Like Roman Empire!
Let me specifically and unequivocally state that in complete contradiction to LCG's headline: The EU will NOT collapse like the old Roman Empire.
The Bible teaches reorganization in Europe (Revelation 17:12-13), followed by its ultimate rise, then destruction from forces to its north and east (Daniel 11:44; Jeremiah 50:41-46; see also Europa, the Beast, and the Book of Revelation) and then its final elimination by the return of Jesus (Revelation 17:12-14; Daniel 2:40-45). The final rise and fall of the final European Empire will take less than four years.
That is NOT how the old Roman Empire collapsed. LCG's headline is in error here. It took centuries and multiple invasions of mainly European forces to bring the Roman Empire down.
While some nations may leave the EU, the reality is that the final European Beast power will not be limited to ten or eleven currently existing nations as some in LCG keep indicating. And the EU cannot possibly collapse like the old Roman Empire did.
Notice also something else LCG has sent out:
Bible prophecies have long referred to an end-time iron-and-clay configuration in Europe composed of ten kings or nations (Daniel 2:42-43)—which suggests that the 28-member EU will downsize. (Many Europeans Unhappy with EU. TW News & Prophecy, May 13, 2016)
While the UK will not remain an equal member of the final European Beast power, and there could be different nations in the European Union, Bible prophecy teaches that there will be a reorganization. Daniel 2:42-43 mentions ten toes, not ten nations. It is Revelation 17:12 that mentions ten kingdoms. Yet Revelation 17:12 is NOT pointing to a reduction of nations.
Sadly, LCG continues to push more prophetic teachings that are not sound scripturally.
Some of the Europeans realize that Europe needs to reorganize into regions.
Certainly. Notice something from New Europe:
Do we need a new Europe?
Yes. Europe has to change completely because it isn’t able to solve problems but only to create them. ...
What kind of Europe do you want?
I want a different kind of Europe – one based on the regions and the peoples. Lombardy is big like Belgium. We have 10 million inhabitants, 800.000 enterprises, a quarter of the Italian PIB, but in Europe we are worth almost nothing. If Lombardy was an independent state we would be the sixth biggest EU country. I want Brussels to understand that there are some regions with which the EU must start a dialogue. I’m very interested, for example, about the creation, in just a few months, of the Alpine Macro-region. This new conglomerate will include eight Italian regions, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, Bavaria, Baden-W., Rhone-Alpes and Provence. This could bright about be a real change in Europe because regions would become the counterparts of the EU commission and not the member states. So if we will be able to join forces thanks the to the Macro-region and the Greek case to open the institutional crisis, I think that Europe could rapidly evolve towards a new model which is not the EU with 28 member states, each with veto right, but a Europe based on people and regions. (Grandesso F. Europe has to change completely. New Europe, July 6, 2015 http://www.neurope.eu/article/europe-has-to-change-completely/)
Notice that the author wants it so that "regions would become the counterparts of the EU commission and not the member states." The idea that Europe will reorganize into regions, some of which are likely to be groups of nations, is what some Europeans are considering.
Notice something from the Vice Chancellor of Germany:
2 July 2016
German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel has called for the number of EU Commissioners to be cut and for Brussels to reconsider how it allocates its budget, just over a week after Britons voted to leave the bloc.
“A Europe in which 27 Commissioners want to prove themselves doesn’t make sense,” he said in an interview with the newspaper Neue Osnabruecker Zeitung, published on Saturday. “It would be good to downsize in this respect.” …
He also said the EU should build up a joint European army.
Gabriel, who is also Vice Chancellor, said a Brexit did not endanger the EU . . . http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-germany-gabriel-idUSKCN0ZI0B7
His call for a reduction in top leaders as well as a European military is consistent with various biblical prophecies (e.g. Daniel 11:21-24).
Since Vice Chancellor Gabriel called for a reduction in EU Commissioners, let’s look at what an EU Commissioner is:
A European Commissioner is a member of the European Commission. Each Commissioner within the college holds a specific portfolio and are led by the President of the European Commission. In simple terms they are the equivalent of national ministers. Each European Union member state has the right to a single commissioner (List of European Commissioners. Wikipedia, accessed 07/02/16)
In other words, currently each EU nation gets to appoint its own EU Commissioner and German Vice Chancellor Gabriel believes that should be reduced. Thus one commissioner would represent, on average, more than one nation and/or perhaps a redefined region.
While I have contended this type of reorganization for years, the fact that the Vice Chancellor of Germany is proposing that the top ”possessor of the highest office of a political realm” (basileís in Revelation 17:12) of the European Union need to be reduced BELOW the number of nations in the EU, is confirmation that the reorganization in Revelation 17:12 certainly does not need to be the actual number of nations that will support the final Beast power. At least as far as some important European political leaders are concerned.
Did you realize that although there were 15 nations in 1953 involved in the initial Council of Europe, a twelve star flag was adopted in 1955?
Why hasn't the Council of Europe (which has 45 member states, including the EU--which has 28 member nations) used another number or changed it?
There seem to be two reasons.
The first is that Mary is prominent in an unusual way in the new European Union as she was the "inspiration" for its flag. According to the Times Online (November 16, 2005):
"The chosen flag was designed by Arsene Heitz, a German Roman Catholic who said that he had been inspired by a line in the Book of Revelation about the Virgin Mary wearing a crown of 12 stars, a common depiction in Christian iconography."
Hence, we see a clear tie between Mary (called the "Queen of Heaven" by the Roman Catholics) and the flag for the European Union. The final European power will also be a religious one (Revelation 13:4,8).
The second reason for 12 stars may be because of private Catholic prophecies concerning 12 kings at the end.
St. Francis of Paola (Born in Italy, 15th century). "By the grace of the Almighty, the Great Monarch will annihilate heretics and unbelievers. He will have a great army, and angels will fight at his side. He will be like the sun among the stars. His influence will spread over the whole earth. All in all, there will be on earth twelve Kings, one Emperor, one Pope and a few Princes. They will all lead holy lives." (Dupont, Yves. Catholic Prophecy. TAN Books, 1973, p.38)
The above shows that many Roman Catholics will believe that God is on the side of the one the Book of Revelation calls the beast--who they call "the Great Monarch" (additional specific prophecies are listed in the article Who is the King of the North?).
Hence the flag seems to tie Roman Catholic symbols in with a "Queen of Heaven" and a the future European Emperor--one who is expected in the 21st century (see also Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End?).
A peculiar part of the above prophecy is that many Roman Catholics seemingly believe that there will be twelve kings associated with the beast (who they often seem to look forward to as "the Great Monarch"), yet the Bible states that there are ten kings (Daniel 7:24; Revelation 17:12). However, this is not necessarily a contradiction. Daniel 7:24 says the last kingdom arises from ten kings, while Revelation 17:12 states that ten kings will give their power to the beast. However, it may be that after the beast power is fully formed, that he may add two additional kings and/or perhaps some princes. Of course, another way to get twelve is to consider the Beast and Antichrist as kings, in addition to the 10, and simply conclude that the Catholic prophecy is in error. This could thus be consistent with the EU flag.
It should also be noted that Revelation 17 itself discusses a power from the city of seven hills that has religious ties that makes arrangements with the European Beast power. From this, we can tell that the religion will not be Islamic, but something tied to the Church of Rome--although this will not last (Revelation 17:15-17).
In Revelation 17:12, it states that the ten kings "receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast." Someone asked me how long that hour is.
Well, there is another reference in Revelation that may have clues to the answer. Jesus said:
10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)
The 'hour of trial' that Jesus referred to seems to be the the three and 1/2 year period of the great tribulation and day of the Lord. This is consistent with as the 'hour of trial.'
The Beast will reign for 3 1/2 years (forty-two months):
13 These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast. 14 These will make war with the Lamb ... (Revelation 17:13-14)
3 And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast. 4 So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, "Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?"
5 And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months.
6 Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. (Revelation 13:3-8)
So, when we see Europe reorganize into ten districts/kingdoms, this could be a sign that the Great Tribulation will start soon, and the persecution, the fifth seal of Revelation, is about to open (see also When Will the Great Tribulation Begin?).
Notice that the faithful portion of the Church of God is protected for three and 1/2 years according to the following:
14 But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent. (Revelation 12:14)
So, notice that the church is protected for 3 1/2 years: a time (1), times (2), and 1/2 a time. These passages in Revelation support the idea that the amount of time that the ten kings have authority is also about 3 1/2 years.
It perhaps should be noted that the period of time would seem to have to be much more than a literal hour. One of the reasons to conclude that is because these ten kings, also called the ten horns in Revelation 17:12, eventually turn against the fallen Church of Rome in Revelation 17:16. Notice:
17:16 And the ten horns which you saw on the beast, these will hate the harlot, make her desolate and naked, eat her flesh and burn her with fire. 17 For God has put it into their hearts to fulfill His purpose, to be of one mind, and to give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled. 18 And the woman whom you saw is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth."
18:1 After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. 2 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, "Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! 3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury." (Revelation 17:16-18:3)
Notice that the harlot is devoured towards the end of the time that Babylon rules. Other passages in Daniel show that the Beast that the ten kings give their power to is also given a certain type of power for 3 1/2 years per Daniel 7:25 (time, times, and half a time), which is also consistent with Daniel 12:7 (which also tells of the time, times, and half a time).
Thus, it seems that the 'hour' the ten kings/horns have authority is probably 3 1/2 years.
This beast empire that the Bible warns of in Revelation 17:12-13 and Daniel 2:41-43 is a European one and has connections to a particular sea.
Notice what other passages in Revelation and Daniel reveal:
1 Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name. 2 Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority. 3 And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast. 4 So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?” (Revelation 13:1-4)
2 Daniel spoke, saying, “I saw in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven were stirring up the Great Sea. 3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, each different from the other. 4 The first was like a lion, and had eagle’s wings. I watched till its wings were plucked off; and it was lifted up from the earth and made to stand on two feet like a man, and a man’s heart was given to it. 5 “And suddenly another beast, a second, like a bear. It was raised up on one side, and had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. And they said thus to it: ‘Arise, devour much flesh!’ 6 “After this I looked, and there was another, like a leopard, which had on its back four wings of a bird. The beast also had four heads, and dominion was given to it. 7 “After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, exceedingly strong. It had huge iron teeth; it was devouring, breaking in pieces, and trampling the residue with its feet. It was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. (Daniel 7:2-7)
The final version of the above beast has ten horns (Daniel 7:7) as does the Beast power of Revelation 17:12. This is the Beast of the Sea.
According to the Bible, the “Great Sea” that bordered the ancient lands of Israel (Joshua 9:1; 23:4; Ezekiel 47:13-16) was the Mediterranean Sea--and that is the sea that Daniel was referring to.
Why does this matter?
Well, the ancient Roman Empire controlled all the lands that used to border the Mediterranean Sea. The final Beast power in Revelation 17 is the one also referred to as the King of the North in Daniel 11. The “north” refers not only to areas north of Jerusalem, but also the lands that border the northern portion of the Mediterranean Sea (the nations that are on the southern border of the Mediterranean Sea are part of the King of the South, Daniel 11:40-43).
The individual nations that currently have borders with the Mediterranean Sea that are in or have indicated a desire to be in the European Union include (ignoring Turkey):
7. Bosnia and Herzegovina
The above list does not include nations such as Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Macedonia, and others which could be expected to be part of the final Beast/King of the North power. There are currently at least 37 nations in the EU or highly interested in joining it—and that also does not include Vatican City and several other small territories.
Although some of questioned if Israelitish-descended nations could be part of the final Beast power, they need to look at history. History shows us that France, Switzerland, and at least parts of the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, and UK were part of old Roman Empire. At least parts of France, as well as essentially all of the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Belgium were part of the so-called 'Holy Roman Empire.' Consider also that three members of the House of Luxembourg reigned as 'Holy Roman Emperors.' Consider also that three members of the House of Luxembourg reigned as 'Holy Roman Emperors.'
The fact that at least part of the Israelitish peoples were part of the beasts in Daniel 2:40-43 and 7:2-8, should show all that it, for a time, can be part of the final Beast power.
Perhaps it would be of interest to note that the old “Holy Roman Empire” of the Middle Ages had territory that is currently occupied by 14 nations (six of which were “Israelite-descended”). But that empire did not dominate the world anything like the final one of Revelation 13/17/18 is prophesied to, nor was the “Holy Roman Empire” ever considered to be the “King of the North.”
The King of the North must be more powerful than the old “Holy Roman Empire” and this certainly may mean that it will have more territory.
The position of the Continuing Church of God is that since the Greek in Revelation 17:12-13 does not state that the final Beast power will be restricted to 10 currently existing nations it is not wise to insist on something that the Bible does not insist on.
If there ends up being more than 10 or 11 existing nations in the final Beast power empire, those who insist on 10 or 11 nations will not understand when Matthew 24:15, Daniel 11:31, and Mark 13:14 is being fulfilled.
One could rightly conclude that knowing if there are ten or more nations that will be part of Revelation 17:12 is not an issue of salvation for Christians.
But is this subject important?
Jesus taught that proper knowledge of certain aspects of end-time prophecy was important:
29 Then He spoke to them a parable: "Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. 30 When they are already budding, you see and know for yourselves that summer is now near. 31 So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near. 32 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all things take place. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
34 "But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. 35 For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man." (Luke 21:29-36)
32 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. 34 It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. 35 Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming — in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning — 36 lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!" (Mark 13:32-37)
36 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. 37 But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. 42 Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. (Matthew 24:36-43)
So, Jesus taught that prophecy is important. Before going further, please remember that truth is important and that Jesus taught, "Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth" (John 17:17). Insisting the Bible teaches that there must be ten (or eleven) currently existing nations is simply not the truth. Organizations that do this, also have problems with other scriptures and teaching the truth. Spiritually, that is why this matters.
In the gospels, Jesus refers to the rise of the final Beast power and gives a specific admonition:
15 "Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place" (whoever reads, let him understand), 16 "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let him who is on the housetop not go down to take anything out of his house. 18 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. 19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. (Matthew 24:15-21)
14 "So when you see the 'abomination of desolation,' spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not" (let the reader understand), "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let him who is on the housetop not go down into the house, nor enter to take anything out of his house. 16 And let him who is in the field not go back to get his clothes. 17 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 18 And pray that your flight may not be in winter. 19 For in those days there will be tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the creation which God created until this time, nor ever shall be. (Mark 13:14-19)
20 "But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near. 21 Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those who are in the midst of her depart, and let not those who are in the country enter her. 22 For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. 23 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people. (Luke 21:20-23)
When Jerusalem is surrounded by armies, and that Beast power potentially has more than ten or eleven nations in it, groups who hold th 10 or 11 nation view will not realize that Daniel, chapter 11, verse 31 is being fulfilled or that they need to flee to a place in the wilderness (Revelation 12:14-16). Because they would not believe the word of God as they should, they will be vomited out of Jesus' mouth (Revelation 3:16) and be turned over to Satan (Revelation 12:17).
Those who insist that the final King of the North power must have 10 or 11 currently existing nations will not believe that the King of the North has properly fulfilled Daniel 11:31 and thus will not then flee as Jesus says in Matthew 24:15-20, Mark 13:14-18, and Luke 21:20-22.
While various COG groups, including PCG, LCG, and CCOG all believe that they best represent the end-time Philadelphia remnant of the Church of God, PCG and LCG are insisting on 10 or 11 nations. Only one of them is "rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15) on this matter.
The Bible teaches:
10 Cursed is he who does the work of the Lord deceitfully, (Jeremiah 48:10)
4 For the word of the Lord is right, And all His work is done in truth. (Psalms 33:4)
LCG and PCG are not teaching the truth on this matter, but have insisted on a deceitful position. Neither of those organizations can possibly represent the Philadelphia remnant at this time.
Notice also that the Philadelphia remnant is the only part of the true Christian church that is specifically promised protection from the “hour of trial” known as Great Tribulation:
7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write,
'These things says He who is holy, He who is true, "He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens": 8 "I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. 9 Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie — indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. 10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. 11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. (Revelation 3:7-11)
The end-time “Philadelphians” live their lives as Jesus would have them live in the 21st century, keep Jesus word, know which doctrines to hold fast to, and will be subject to protection from the ‘hour of trial.” No other Christian group is promised that specific protection at the time of the end (though the Philadelphians themselves will get persecuted prior per Revelation 12:13-16; Daniel 11:29-35; and Daniel 7:25a).
Those in LCG and PCG teach that the US, Canada, UK, Australia, and New Zealand will be taken over by and/or because of the King of the North Beast power. Since this happens shortly after the second reorganization in Revelation 17:12-13 (and before the third reorganization which is listed in Revelation 17:15-17), unless they repent they simply will not realize what is happening until it it basically too late to flee (see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra).
While understanding all the nuances of end-time prophecy will not of itself protect anyone (cf. Luke 21:36), insisting on prophetic misunderstandings will blind many who are Christian from seeing what is happening when various end-time prophecies are being fulfilled. Those who do not believe that the Beast power is fulfilling Matthew 24:15, Mark 13:14, and Daniel 11:31 will not flee as Jesus advises in Matthew 24:16-20 and Mark 13:14-18. Only those Jesus leads to flee when it is time will be protected per Revelation 12:14-17.
A Possible Tie to Daniel 11?
Notice a prophecy that Daniel wrote down:
21 And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue. 22 With the force of a flood they shall be swept away from before him and be broken, and also the prince of the covenant. 23 And after the league is made with him he shall act deceitfully, for he shall come up and become strong with a small number of people. 24 He shall enter peaceably, even into the richest places of the province; and he shall do what his fathers have not done, nor his forefathers: he shall disperse among them the plunder, spoil, and riches; and he shall devise his plans against the strongholds, but only for a time. (Daniel 11:21-24)
So, this leader will promise peace and prosperity. He will make a deal with a small amount of people to gain power. Consider that Revelation 17:12-13 indicates that the ten kings will give their power to the Beast, and that bssically that was their plan all along (they probably will not say it publicly before they decide that they will do it, probably for reasons of peace, order, and prosperity).
Understanding Revelation 17:12-13 helps us understand a variety of end time prophecies.
To teach that Revelation 17:12-13 means that there must be 10 nations as they currently exist is in error. The Greek word normally translated as nation/nations is not in those passages.
The Bible in Revelation 17:12-13 does NOT teach that this is a reference to ten currently existing nations.
The Bible in Daniel 2:41-43 teaches that the ten will be an unnatural/artificial confederation of “toes,” thus demonstrating that not all the “toes” are ten naturally existing nations.
The old Worldwide Church of God realized that Revelation 17:12-13 was not restricted to ten existing nations.
The Continuing Church of God realizes that Revelation 17:12-13 was not restricted to ten existing nations. When the ten kings gain power, this will point to the fact that the Great Tribulation is soon to begin.
Yet, both PCG and LCG have sometimes taught and/or insisted on positions that were also not consistent with what the old Worldwide Church of God taught.
Both PCG and LCG have relied on positions that are not consistent with what the Bible itself actually teaches. This is not good (Jeremiah 48:10; Psalm 33:4). However, since I have publicly pointed this out, both have seemingly somewhat modified their views.
By insisting on (or basically expecting) 10 or 11 currently existing nations are all that could be in the Beast, various ones will not know when the King of the North is about to attack the USA and its Anglo-Saxon allies (Daniel 11:39). They are not "rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15) on this matter.
(Furthermore, since both PCG and LCG have the wrong end-time prophetic sequence involving the battle between the King of the North and the King of the South, unless they change, they will not know what is happening at the end; see PCG and LCG do not understand the end-time King of the South sequence–do you?)
Unless they change their positions, NEITHER PCG NOR LCG WILL REALIZE WHEN THE FINAL KING OF THE NORTH WILL BE FORMED NOR WHEN THE GREAT TRIBULATION WILL BEGIN. SINCE THEY WILL NOT KNOW, NEITHER WILL THEIR SUPPORTERS REALIZE WHEN IT WILL BE TIME TO FLEE TO BE PROTECTED IN A PLACE OF SAFETY IN THE WILDERNESS (Revelation 12:14-16).
We in the Continuing Church of God strive to always rely on the Bible: ” We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts” (2 Peter 1:19, KJV).
Will you truly rely on the more sure word of prophecy?
Thiel B. Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations? http://www.cogwriter.com/ten-kings.htm (C) 2014 /2015/2016 1014