The Prelude to the Coming of the Lord
There are many prophecies in scripture that speak about the man of terror who is to come in the future and launch the final war against God and His people. Most of these prophecies were buried in the writings of the prophets and meant little to those who read them. Only in the Book of Daniel was the time line clarified. But even in his book, the writings were mysterious and incomprehendable.
Jesus brought all the mysteries to light. Through him, a lengthy portrait of the figures of perdition have taken shape. John, in his Book of Revelation has shown that there will be three figures in the last days, the Rebel, his boss (the Dragon [Satan]) and a 'false prophet'. Paul amplified on the character of the Rebel:
"To turn now, brothers, to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and how we shall all be gathered round him: please do not get excited too soon or alarmed by any prediction or rumor or any letter claiming to come from us, implying that the Day of the Lord has already arrived. Never let anyone deceive you in this way." (2 Thess.2:1-2).
"It cannot happen until the Great Revolt has taken place and the Rebel, the Lost One, has appeared. This is the Enemy, the one who claims to be so much greater than all that men call 'god', so much greater than anything that is worshipped, that he enthrones himself in God's sanctuary and claims that he is God." (2 Thess.2:3-4).
"Surely you remember my telling you about this when I was with you? And you know, too, what is still holding him back from appearing before his appointed time. Rebellion is at its work already, but in secret, and the one who is holding it back has first to be removed before the Rebel appears openly." (2 Thess.2:5-7).
"When he does appear, the Lord will kill him with the breath of his mouth and will annihilate him with his glorious appearance at his coming." (2 Thess.2:8).
"But when the Rebel comes, Satan will set to work: there will be all kinds of miracles and a deceptive show of signs and portents, and everything evil that can deceive those who are bound for destruction because they would not grasp the love of the truth which could have saved them. The reason why God is sending a power to delude them and make them believe what is untrue is to condemn all who refused to believe in the truth and chose wickedness instead." (2 Thess.2:9-12).
Armed with the descriptions given us by John and Paul, the writings of the prophet Ezekiel have taken on added meaning. Ezekiel refers to this Rebel as 'Gog' and says that he will come from the lands of the far north. He describes the areas involved in his initial rise to power and explains how God is using him to be the final scourge that drives wickedness from the earth.
Jeremiah tells us that the Rebel's fires will burn the earth completely, ending all of mankind's works and edifices. (Jer.51:58)
Daniel says that Satan's Beast will erect an abomination in the holy place, desecrating God's sanctuary and that he will put a stop to the communion offering of the perpetual sacrifice. (See footnote). Jesus told His disciples that they should look for this occurance as the definitive sign that the dreaded and catastrophic tribulation has arrived.
Daniel describes the Rebel's forages and battles very clearly and even gives a portrait of his death and the terrible carnage that will follow that event.
All of these descriptions and many more fill the pages of scripture, proclaiming the future in advance so that the people of the earth cannot ever say that they were not forewarned by God.
1. 'The Last Days of Babylon, Chapter 22, 'Gog, Prince of Magog'
2. Gog and Magog
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