Goodnews Christian Ministry
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The Reign of Christ

"Ask and I will give you the nations for your heritage, the ends of the earth for your domain.
With iron sceptre you will break them, shatter them like potter's ware.
So now, you kings, learn wisdom, earthly rulers, be warned:
serve the Lord, fear him, tremble and kiss his feet,
or he will be angry and you will perish,
for his anger is very quick to blaze.
(Ps.2:1-12)

_____________


The reign of Christ on earth is now almost over. Virtually 1700 years long, that reign remains largely unseen today. Historically, it is easy to perceive in the iron-fisted reign of the western Church. While prominently visible in the history books, many do not recognize this rule (pragmatic and earthly as it has been) as "Christian" in nature ­ thinking ahead to the perfect rule to come.

Yet the Bible (see Psalm quotation above) gives a much different interpretation of Christ's earthly reign ­ one more in keeping with what history has already unveiled, Christianity's now collapsing political (as well as spiritual) 17 century-long dominance over the earth.

That political and spiritual dominance, Christianity's earthly rule, began with Contantine in 312 A.D. when he signed the Edict of Milan, a proclamation that freed the empire's Christian population from the catacombs of the Roman ghettos, and let them climb out to freedom and ultimately to preferential Roman citizenship. Constantine's own conversion to Christianity sealed for them this favored status.

Constantine's immediate successors, the Roman emperor's Galerius in the East and Theodosus in the West signed decrees that outlawed paganism throughout all territories ruled by Rome (at that time virtually all of the civilized world). The pagan temples that were so ubiquitous across the Greek and Roman landscape were, to a one, ordered closed and many were converted into churches in the service of the Lord.

From that time (the end of the 7 weeks) to the beginning of the 20th century (the 62 weeks) the rule of Christ on earth has proceeded along the rocky and checkered road that Daniel prophesied for it:

"Know this and understand: from the time this message went out: "Return and rebuild Jerusalem" to the coming of an anointed Prince, seven weeks and sixty-two weeks, with squares and ramparts restored and rebuilt, but in a time of trouble. And after the sixty-two weeks an anointed one will be cut off -- and the city and the sanctuary will be destroyed by a prince who will come." (Dan.9:25-26).

Marking the end of the 62 weeks, the reign of Christ on earth will end with the fall of Vatican City (at this point, the final survivor of the Revolt). That citadel, the City of David in exile, is the last Christian nation still left standing in a secular onslaught against Jesus that continues to this moment unabated.

Over the last hundred years all other nations on earth have, in favor of secularism, legally divorced themselves by proclamation from Christian rule. The most prominent to fall was the United States in 1963 when, through edicts issued by the Supreme Court, the unwritten compromise that had allowed Christianity a strong voice in the rule of the American government and its affairs was abolished once and for all.

The 1963 judgment came as a declaration in favor of secular school independence from religious rules, but a series of edicts followed that quickly expanded that separation to include the entire government heirarchy from all elements of Christ's religion, abolishing its moral hold over the nation entirely.

In the 45 years that have followed, this ban on religion has spread throughout the nation, extending far beyond the government to include even the corporate world, fomenting a visible "war" on Christ that has virtually consumed the nation.

In less than a hundred years, the sprawling nations that once marked the Christian-ruled West have turned their back on Christ. In that brief period, every nation in the western world has evicted Jesus from their political throne rooms. Finding themselves suddenly severed from the moral base of the Christian Gospel, these nations have embraced all the licenses of Satanism long forbidden by the Church.

In concert with this upheaval, atheism, a political philosophy outlawed by the Church during its 1700-year reign made an instant and spectacular return in the godless communistic doctrine driving the Russian Revolution in 1918.

This was the healing of the mortal wound (Rev. 13:3). Entering the world stage on the heels of the first global world war, it returned godlessness (the philosophy of Anti-god) to world political power.

The Book of Daniel and the Book of Revelation both speak to the reign of the Church. It is described (in Daniel's quotation above) as a period of troubled peace bordered by two horrendous wars against God. The first of these two wars forced the Church of Christ into the Roman catacombs to escape slaughter at the hands of the godless authorities then ruling the empire.

A shorter second war, to take place in the last days, after Daniels predicted 62 weeks of "troubled" rebuilding have seen the rescue completed, will then follow ­ a direct result of the "Revolt" of the nations, the rebellion of the 20th century. These rebelling nations are the same nations that in the previous centuries had allowed Christ (through the Church) to sit in their throne rooms and rule their people spiritually in conjuctions with the temporal powers.

In between these two wars, scripture describes a time of troubled peace ­ in Daniel, a period of 62 weeks. This time span, designed for the spiritual rebuilding of Jerusalem, received its power to exist in the jailing of Satan, a spiritual incarceration described in the Book of Revelation:

"Then I saw an angel come down from heaven with the key of the Abyss in his hand and an enormous chain. ·He overpowered the dragon, that primeval serpent which is the devil and Satan, and chained him up for a thousand years. ·He threw him into the Abyss, and shut the entrance and sealed it over him, to make sure he would not deceive the nations again until the thousand years had passed. At the end of that time he must be released, but only for a short while." (Rev. 20:1-3).

The period of that imprisonment is defined in those verses as "a thousand years" in length. Consequently it is called "the millenium". It's meaning is ascribed to the earthly reign of Christ rather than to Satan's time in jail in the Abyss because the two dovetail one another, and are each a consequence of the other, with the greater importance being the salvation of God's people.

While erroneous prophets have attributed this "millenium" to a future time, they are wrong. The fact is, the millenium (God's offer of atonement to the people of the earth) is almost over ­ the revolt of the nations having brought the millenium to its final moments ­ the end of the harvest in keeping with Jesus' declaration:

"No one who believes in him will be condemned; but whoever refuses to believe is condemned already, because he has refused to believe in the name of God's only Son.

"On these grounds is sentence pronounced: that though the light has come into the world men have shown they prefer darkness to the light because their deeds were evil. And indeed, everybody who does wrong hates the light and avoids it, for fear his actions should be exposed; but the man who lives by the truth comes out into the light, so that it may be plainly seen that what he does is done in God." (John 3:18-21).

The speed of the revolt of the nations against Christ, and the swiftness of their return to secularism's godlessness has been astonishing. Out of all those countries, there is only one nation on earth that still remains politically commited to the rule of Christ.

This shows that the reign of Christ's Church on earth is now holding on by a thread, wrapped up (according to Paul) in an offering of bread and wine by the single person on earth who has been given divine authority to "hold back the wrath" with that very offering.

"It (the Day of the Lord's Return) 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 thaat is worshipped, that he enthrones himself in God's sancatuary and claims that he is God. Surely you remember me 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 Thes. 2:3-7).

In this verse Paul tells us that when this single person is removed, the last nation still ruling its people in Christ will be forced to flee. Set free by the Prince of Persia's hostile proclamation and actions, the City of David will return to Jerusalem in secret. At the same time, in the desecration of the Eucharist, the world's final protection from Satan's wrath will tumble from its place.

"See how God lays the earth waste, makes it a desert, buckles its surface, scatters its inhabitants, priest and people alike, master and slave, mistress and maid, seller and buyer, lender and borrower, creditor and debtor. Ravaged, ravaged the earth, despoiled, as the Lord has said...The earth is defiled under its inhabitiants' feet, for they have transgressed the law, violated the precept, broken the everlasting covenant. So a curse consumes the earth and its inhabitants suffer the penalty, that is why the inhabitants of the earth are burnt up and few men are left." (Is.24:1-6).

The revolt of the nations is a clue to the release of Satan from his prison in the Abyss. We have no idea when it occurred, but the signs of the times seem to point to a moment early in the 20th century. It was then that the nations of the world began to gather for world war, fulfilling for the first time, Revelation's prediction:

"When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive all the nations in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, and mobilise them for war." (Rv.20:7-8).

Just before the first world war started, a giant comet or meteroid came out of the sky (see chronology,1908) and crashed into Russia obliterating hundreds of square miles of forest in a blinding flash of light ­ an explosion so vast it would dwarf even the power of the atom bombs destined to follow. Had God intended to give the world a physical sign of Satan being released from his chains in the Abyss and hurled back to earth, nothing could have served better notice.

It is hard to see Russia's rejection of Jesus and vociferous proclamation of atheism ten years later as a coincidence. The two seem to go hand in hand.

Those who expected a literal millenium, a thousand years in exact terms had their expectations thwarted by Joshua's prophecy:

"Is this not written in the Book of the Just? The sun stood still in the middle of the sky and delayed its setting for almost a whole day (making one day into two). There was never a day like that before or since, when God obeyed the voice of a man, for God was fighting for Israel." (Joshua 10:12-14).

How is a thousand years equal to a single day?

The daylight of Christ is the "Day of Atonement", the holiest moment in the entire Bible. For the full term of Satan's incarcertion, the Sonshine of that holy "day" has shone brightly across the earth, searching every dungeon for the lost people of God held captive by Satan. It is the time alloted for the Gospel to be preached to the whole world, a time when the light of Christ touches every part of the planet. And it has been expanded from one day into almost two by the power of God ­ from one thousand years into almost two thousand years.

Satan's return is destined to put an end to this search, bringing back the night, as he crushes the power of the holy people:

"Work while you still have the day, night is coming when no one can work". (Jn.9:4).

When does scripture say this day will happen? In the prophecy of Moses there is a clue couched in biblical metaphore. Moses led his people out of Egypt and took them on a three-day journey into the wilderness to meet God face to face at the foot of Mt. Sinai. Those three days pointed to a greater symbolism in Jesus Christ:

"But there is one thing my friends, that you must never forget: that with the Lord, 'a day' can mean a thousand years, and a thousand years is like a day." 2 Peter 3:8; Ps.90:4).

Moses told his people that they must wash and clean for two days and on the third, see God in person. Similarly in Christ, we have witnessed two metaphoric days of washing and cleaning (repentance and baptism), now replaced by the "third day". Dawning on January 1, 2001, this third "day" seems certain to witness His Return. But how soon?

Jesus rose from the dead very early on the third day in Jerusalem. His tomb was empty before dawn.

And here we are now witnessing the revolt of the nations and the Jewish return to Jerusalem. The clues to the times we find ourselves in today are not only there, they are quite powerful.  An early return seems inevitable.

We have passed from the 62 weeks (the time of washing and cleaning) into the last week of Daniel's vision ­ the time of war and devastation. The only thing keeping the last half-week at bay is the "man in white", the anointed bishop described by Lucia de los Santos of Portugal ­ the same "anointed one" in Daniel's prophecy:

"After the sixty-two weeks an anointed one will be cut off ­and...will not be for him ­the city and the sanctuary will be destroyed by a prince who will come. His end will come in catastrophe and, until the end, there will be war and all the devastation decreed. He will make a firm covenant with many for the space of a week; and for the space of one half-week he will put a stop to sacrifice and oblation, and on the wing of the Temple will be the disastrous abomination until the end, until the doom assigned to the devastator." (Dan.9:26-27).

The Perpetual Sacrifice abolished in these actions by the evil prince as described by Daniel is not a Jewish sacrifice. It is the Eucharist, the body and blood of Christ offered in atonement for mankind's sins. When that sacrifice is desecrated, and the one who offers it, assassinated, the last half-week in Daniel's vision will commence.

Many of the nations of Europe and Asia cast aside their relationship with Christ in the earliest days of the 20th century. In 1922, following this trend Mussolini, the leader of Italy secularized his nation as well, divorcing it from the Roman church, and isolating the Vatican into its own city-state (it's own country). That action gave visible witness to the reality of the City of David and set the stage for its later return to Jerusalem.

Looking at the words of the Psalm that heads this page, how quick actually was God's anger to blaze in the wake of the nation's revolt?  What happened as a result of all these Eastern Hemispheric nations spiraling one by one in rapid succession away from Christ?

The results were immediate and horrendous. World War I; the political reappearance of atheism as a world power in the Russian revolution with its 50 million dead; a second world war with the ghastly appearance of what has to be the seventh head of the beast, Adolph Hitler; his horrible massacres and venom; the Japanese atrocities; Atomic warfare; Korea; the Cold War and its explosion of nuclear armaments, enough to kill every person on the planet hundreds of times over; genocides sweeping across the face of the earth, killing millions here and millions there; the Israeli wars.

All this mayhem, decade after decade, plunged the cities of the Eastern Hemisphere into smoking ruins from one end to the other while hundreds of millions of people died or were massacred.

The United States, holding fast to God, both politically as well as spiritually, escaped all this carnage. But that was then. What can we expect now, after joining the others and turning Him out in the 1960's along with the Gospel's moral code? 

In our cities, the towers have fallen (biblically the overarching symbols of power and might). And before that, tanks rumbled menacingly down the streets of Chicago, soldiers shot students at an American university, there was the assassination of the president; the ravages of Vietnam, more assassinations and racism, a populace polarized into deeply etched political hatreds of one another, the two Gulf wars and Islamic terrorism. Eight of the 10 greatest natural disasters in American history have occurred in the last 10 years alone. And now we are faced with endless war in the Middle East and a collapsing economy claimed to be worse than the 1929 depression.

Again, the results seem to have been immediate and horrendous. We find ourselves today in a world tumbling out of control into the Wrath. There has never been a time like this before in the history of the earth. Does all this reflect God's anger?  

It certainly does not reflect His approval.

Seeing into our time, Jeremiah prophesied that God tried to cure Babylon (this world), but was thwarted by her sinfulness. The only salvation he said, was to escape by the road of God, to get out of her by conversion into righteousness:

"We tried to cure Babylon: she has got no better. Leave her alone and let us each go to his own country. Yes, her sentence reaches to the sky, rises to the very clouds. God has vindicated our integrity." -Jer.51:9-10.

"Escape out of Babylon (save your lives, each one of you); do not perish yourselves in her punishment, for this is the time of God's vengeance: he is paying her her reward! Babylon was a golden cup in the Lord's hand, she made the whole world drunk, the nations drank her wine and then went mad. Babylon has suddenly fallen, is broken: lament for her!" -Jer.51:6-7.

The true reign of God is in heaven. As Jesus Himself said, His kingdom is not of this earth (John 18:36). Peter wrote, "But by the same word, the present sky and earth are destined for fire, and are only being reserved until Judgement day so that all sinners may be destroyed." (2 Peter 3:5-7).

"The Day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then with a roar the sky will vanish, the elements will catch fire and fall apart, the earth and all that it contains will be burnt up. Since everything is coming to an end like this, you should be living holy and saintly lives while you wait and hope for the Day of God to come." (2 Peter 3:10-12).

Then will come the true reign of Christ:

"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; the first heaven and the first, earth had disappeared now, and there was no longer any sea. ·I saw the holy city, and the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, as beautiful as a bride all dressed for her husband.

Then I heard a loud voice call from the throne, 'You see this city? Here God lives among men. He will make his home among them; they shall be his people, and he will be their God; his name is God-with them. He will wipe away all tears from their eyes, there will be no more death and no more mourning or sadness. The world of the past has gone. 

Then the One sitting on the throne spoke 'Now I am making the whole of creation new' he said, it is already done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End." (Rev. 21:1-6)

 

 

 

 


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