Nearing
Midnight

Commentary on world events that relate to Bible prophecy and on Rapture Ready issues world events.




Prior Updates

  • Sep 8, 2014
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  • Jul 18, 2011
  •  


    Sep 15, 2014

    Satanism: Like I’ve Never Seen It Before

    The Satanism category has been part of the Rapture Index ever since I formed the list back in 1987. In all this time, Satanism has never been ranked higher than a rating of three. Over the past few months, a flood of news stories about devil worship has brought the rating up to four.

    In May, there was an outrage when Harvard University agreed to host a black mass. The Harvard Extension Cultural Studies Club claimed its goal was to: “Learn and experience the history of different cultural practices.” An outcry from the Catholic Church forced the event to move off campus.

    The New York based Satanic Temple has been the most active Satanist group in America. They came into the public view in January of 2013, when they showed up at Florida’s capitol to encourage students pray to Lucifer. The Satanic Temple has recently made news by announcing its plans to open a chapter in Detroit.

    The group has even stepped into the gay marriage debate by offering to perform same-sex weddings in the state of Michigan with the intention of having the union recognized under the First Amendment’s protection of religious freedom.

    The Satanic Temple has been lobbying to erect a bronze statue of Baphomet, a bearded, goat-headed demon deity, posing with two children in Oklahoma City. The move is in response to Christians posting the Ten Commandments at the capitol building. The statue of Baphomet is still under construction and completion is anticipated by the 1st of October.

    Another Satanist group has also caused trouble in Oklahoma City. Dakhma of Angra Mainyu said it will be holding a black mass on Sept. 21, 2014. Its black mass will be a “tamer” version. For example, vinegar will be substituted for all acts involving urine. Since bloodletting does not comply with Parks and Recreation rules, it will also be missing from the satanic ceremony. All 88 tickets to the event held at the theater in the city’s civic center have been sold.

    Canada has not been spared from the rash of Satanism. Last week, a nine-foot tall statue of Satan mysteriously appeared in Vancouver overnight. The bright red statue depicted a nude Satan with one hand raised, giving the “sign of the devil.” The Satan statue was quickly taken down, but not before receiving wide media coverage which was generally positive.

    Finding a Satanist who actually worships Satan is quite rare. Most don’t even believe he exists. Like atheism, this religion is comprised almost entirely of their hatred of all things Christian. Satanists argue that the Bible is the root of the world’s problems, and the rejection of Christianity is the pathway to a utopian society.

    Christians have a long history of being suckers for anyone who claims to be a former Satanist. When I was a young believer, I remember a series of people who specialized in warning that Satan and his minions were plotting to take over America. The devil must of had a good laugh when the vast majority of these ex-Satanists were proven to be spectacular liars.

    Even the most basic form of fact checking would have uncovered their dishonesty. When conspiracy theorist, John Wayne Todd, made the rounds in evangelical Christian circles saying that Jim Bakker, Jerry Falwell, Billy Graham, Bob Jones, Sr. and Pat Robertson were part of a vast satanic plot, few people questioned his information. He claimed to have provided the seed money for Christian rock music so as to entrap youth with its “demonic beat.” He also predicted that U.S. President Jimmy Carter was the Antichrist.

    John’s career came to a sudden end when he was arrested for the rape of a University of South Carolina graduate student, and the sexually molesting two children. Despite the fact that John Wayne Todd was found to be mentally unfit and guilty of multiple sex crimes, people continue to quote him as an authority on Satanism (more demonic laughter).

    There is little chance that Satanism will ever attract large numbers of followers. You can’t build a religion on Western civilization’s most notorious evil character. Satanism is for people who think they’re rebels.

    The rise of Satanism is useful in measuring the spiritual state of our nation. People turning to the dark arts because of Satan’s influence over the world is becoming stronger.

    In the end, Satanism is not part of the devil’s master plan. When the Antichrist—the greatest Satanist of all time—rises on the scene, he will be welcomed as an angel that has the answer to all of mankind’s problems. But it won’t be until the midpoint of the Tribulation that he will show his horns.

    “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:13-14).

    “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect” (Matthew 24:24).

    --Todd


    Antichrist’s Incubator

    Mulling over the astonishing end-times stage-setting we are witnessing for the coming Tribulation, I came to a realization that one of the most prominent signals given in Bible prophecy is strangely on the periphery at the moment. Every other signal God’s Word gives for the end of the dispensation of grace and the beginning of Daniel's seventieth week (the Tribulation era) is front and center. But, the prophecy about the entity I call for purposes of this essay "Antichrist’s Incubator" is almost so low profile at present as to be virtually invisible.

    I’m referring to the entity we have long considered the reviving Roman Empire.

    The European Union (EU) is at present not much written about as being the matrix out of which will come planet earth’s final diabolical dictator. However, the subject has previously long been at the heart of eschatological profferings. Dr. Dave Breese, for example, did a great deal of study, writing,and speaking on the subject of Antichrist and his origins as coming from the area that is now known as the EU.

    About the only mention of the EU during these days of Mideast and Russia-Ukrainian turmoil is the more or less limp-wristed part this entity that was once considered to be growing in power is playing.

    We get a flavor of this seeming degradation of the EU’s status on the world stage by the following news excerpt:

    European governments approved a new round of economic sanctions against Russia, but the measures won't enter into force for several days to see whether negotiations over the fate of war-torn eastern Ukraine show progress. Some nations, led by Finland, wanted to hold back on implementing the new sanctions while talks are under way, after last week's cease-fire between Kiev, Moscow and pro-Russia rebels…

    The new sanctions, if implemented, will expand the number of Russian businesses barred from raising new money in the bloc's capital markets to include three major state-owned oil companies, according to documents seen by The Wall Street Journal. (Laurence Norman, "EU Approves New Round of Sanctions on Russia, http://online.wsj.com/articles/eu-to-launch-more-sanctions-on-russia-1410169944)

    This back-burner status of the EU has opened up the study of things to come in a way I would have thought not possible just several years ago. Middle East machinations have simply overwhelmed the headlines, causing many prophecy observers to push all else from the headlines so far as consideration of traditional eschatological viewpoint about the first beast of Revelation is concerned. Antichrist’s point of origin has changed in the minds of these observers–at least in the viewpoints of a considerable number of those who didn’t have an alternative view all along.

    To clarify, there are those who have believed all along that Antichrist will come from the Middle East–will be a Muslim. Others held to the view that Daniel 9:26-27 indicates that Antichrist will be a European–out of the revived Roman Empire— but now believe the son of perdition will be an Islamist. This change in viewpoint for these comes because of the stunning movement of ISIS (ISIL as Mr. Obama would have it, I believe, in order that Israel be included in land up for grabs with the terrorists’ march across the region).

    I have due respect for these alternate views to the traditional premillennial, pretrib model. Certainly, there is a strong case that Antichrist will spring from Middle Eastern roots. My close friend, Phillip Goodman, of Bible Prophecy as Written, for example, has a superb work on the subject –The Assyrian Connection (1993). He is one of the most excellent scholars of Bible prophecy on the scene today, and I heartily suggest you get the book and read it.

    My own view continues to be that the first beast of Revelation 13 will emerge from the area surrounding Rome–from the European Union. I do believe he will be of Middle Eastern genetic extraction, however. Bible prophecy plainly teaches he will be “the Assyrian.”

    However, I am equally convinced that this most horrific tyrant of human history will be born and raised in the area of Rome. There is no doubt in my mind that Bible prophecy also plainly teaches this regarding this man of sin. Further, the title of my essay, " Incubator," carries with it, in my prayerfully considered thinking, a more sinister possibility than his merely being born somewhere in the heart of Europe. It carries also the conjecture–and I’m about to get into trouble with some here—that his genetics will also include that which isn’t human at all.

    Jesus said things will again be like they were in the days of Noah when he next catastrophically breaks into the affairs of fallen mankind (Matthew 24 and Luke 17). He spoke of the judgment of that time upon a world filled with iniquity when people were carrying on with business as usual despite the wickedness of the time.

    The most pronounced wickedness, I believe, was that mentioned in Genesis 6 about the fact that the genetics of man were contaminated by fallen angels, who “married” human women. The results of this union were the Nephilim offspring, part human and part supernatural (demonic).

    Jesus, remember, said things will again be like in those days. He was talking about at the time of Rapture, I’m convinced. Here’s the application I wish to make to my title: "Antichrist’s Incubator."

    The son of perdition–Antichrist—will, I’m contemplating, possibly be a Nephilim, a part-human, part-demonic entity. This won’t necessarily be by a "Rosemary’s Baby" sort of sexual union, but, perhaps, the result of genetic manipulations in man’s laboratory settings, under demonic “inspiration.”

    Antichrist’s Incubator, in this sense, might well be considered in this, admittedly, strange manner.

    I bring this conjecture forward because God’s character and justice demand that He allow every human being ever born to have his or her trial for their comportment in life conducted before His throne. The trial will either be a time of distribution of rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ (Bema) or for eternal punishment and separation from God at the Great White Throne judgment.

    However, the angels who rebelled are allowed no such trial, just as they have no chance for redemption. Thus, the “corrupted flesh”–the Nephilim offspring of fallen angels—had no chance for redemption, but was doomed without remedy in the Flood of Noah’s day.

    The first and second beasts of Revelation 13 also have no trial. Antichrist and the false prophet are the first to be cast into the Lake of Fire. They do not stand before Christ at the Bema or before God at the Great White Throne. Their fate is sealed before these judgments.

    It is theologically reasonable, therefore, to believe that these two individuals are not fully human, rather likely are Nephilim–the result of a union between the seed of mankind and the seed of the fallen ones, the angels who rebelled, just as happened in the days of Noah.

    Today we are witnessing the incubation of Antichrist and his future partner in crime in the sense of the world being prepared for their appearance upon the world stage.

    All of this said, take heart. If you know Christ for salvation, you won’t be here to see them emerge from their incubation chamber –where ever they are spawned. Christ is about to say, “Come up hither!” (Revelation 4:1). Even so, come Lord Jesus.

     --Terry